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The New York Times Editorial Calling for the Rejection of God

The Line of Fire / Dr. Michael Brown
The Truth Network Radio
April 18, 2022 4:40 pm

The New York Times Editorial Calling for the Rejection of God

The Line of Fire / Dr. Michael Brown

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April 18, 2022 4:40 pm

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Seriously? On Good Friday and the first day of Passover, The New York Times posted an op-ed calling for people to get rid of God? It's time for The Line of Fire with your host, biblical scholar and cultural commentator, Dr. Michael Brown, your voice for moral sanity and spiritual clarity. Call 866-34-TRUTH to get on The Line of Fire.

And now here's your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Friends, we are here for you. We are here to help you get healthier than you've ever been in the Lord, stronger than you've ever been in the Lord, infused with faith and courage as truth so that you can make an impact in the world in which you live. We are here to be your voice for moral sanity and for spiritual clarity. And boy, boy, do we need sanity and clarity today when more than ever I can remember my lifetime. It seems like the world around us is literally losing its mind, not to mention its soul. Welcome to The Line of Fire. Here's number to call 866-34-TRUTH, 866-34-87-884. You know, there's so many shows where people want to call in and we don't get to all the calls or you've got things kind of wrestling on the inside.

It's like, oh, I want to I want to air that. I want to discuss it. Well, phone lines are open for any and all subjects as we get into the broadcast.

But first and foremost, I want to ask you a question. Why do you think it is that often secular media right around the time of Easter or Christmas will launch some article, will publish some controversial article or a new book will come out targeted for right then, say, denying the resurrection right around Resurrection Sunday or casting aspersions on the life of Jesus that will come up around Christmas time. Have you noticed that pattern? Now, I put out a book about the resurrection of Yeshua, the resurrection of Jesus, and arguing it from a Jewish viewpoint and in order to reach Jewish people, and we put that out intentionally came out right at the beginning of covid.

It's called Resurrection if you missed it. But that came out right around the time of Passover Easter intentionally to build faith, to encourage. But if you notice, the secular media often does the opposite of that. That's the time to attack.

So should I say no surprise or should I say still, this was a bit of a surprise that it was so overt, so aggressive. But but check this out. This is New York Times Friday. Now, remember, this is Good Friday on the Christian calendar.

And that night, first day of Passover on the Jewish calendar. And it's entitled In this time of war, I propose we give up God. And then the graphic for the article is by Shalom Auslander, we'll talk more about him in a moment. The graphic is by Leanna Fink, and it's got this giant, angry looking being, this man that's supposed to be God holding someone in his hand, some victim, and then like a lightning bolt in his other hand and marching through a city kind of like Godzilla-like.

That's the graphic. That's the God that we allegedly worship and that we should get rid of. This is a New York Times op-ed piece of of all days.

I mean, you go to website after website after website. Christian websites talking about Good Friday, talking about the death of Jesus, talking about his resurrection coming that Sunday. I mean, website, even more secular websites that have a conservative bent article after article, I wrote a special article about the substitutionary atonement of Jesus and then and then if you go to Jewish websites, of course, there's been talk for weeks leading up to Passover. And of course, that's going to be the focus. So New York Times is telling its readers what it really thinks out of the many op-eds that were submitted to The New York Times, and they may have even solicited this. I don't know. But let's just say it was submitted.

Of the many that were submitted, they chose this one. That's saying something. And as a New York Times reader, it's yet another slap in your face. So what about the author of the article, Shalom Auslander?

So it says this. Mr. Auslander was born and raised in the town of Munson, New York. He's the author of Foreskin's Lament and Hope a Tragedy. His most recent novel is Mother for Dinner. That pretty much told me everything I needed to know. If he was raised in Muncie and he confirms this in the article, then he was raised an ultra-Orthodox Jew and he has obviously not just stepped away from traditional Judaism, but from belief in the God of the Bible more specifically or more generally, and therefore he wants us to get rid of this hurtful, angry God, who in his view is guilty of war crimes, should be prosecuted rather than emulated.

Yeah. Now, if you want to see my response to that, just go to my website. Ask Dr. Brown dot org. It's up on other websites as well. But if you want to see my response to his articles, you can share it with others. And I've got some terrific quotes in there in the response as well. Quotes from others. It's an Ask Dr. Brown dot org.

But let's do this. Let's read through his editorial and then we'll comment. I'm not mad at him. I feel terrible for him and his mind. He's liberated in his mind. He's free, his mind. He's enlightened and he probably feels bad for people like me. But just being candid, I'm not angry with him. My heart goes out to him. And I pray that he'll truly come to know God the way that he never has before.

So here's what he writes. This weekend, Jews around the world will celebrate the holiday of Passover, the name of which comes from the story of God, quote, passing over the homes of our distant ancestors and his way to slaughter the firstborn sons of evil Egyptians. Our forefathers, the story goes, mark their doorpost with lamb's blood in order to spare their own sons the awful fate of their enemies. In this time of war and violence, of repression and suffering, I propose we pass over something else. God. Two aspects, he writes, of the Passover story have troubled me since I was first taught them long ago in an Orthodox yeshiva in Muncie, New York.

I was eight years old. As the holiday approached, our rabbi commanded us to open our Chumashim, Old Testament, technically Chumashim, that's five books of Moses, or Old Testaments to the Book of Exodus to get us in the holiday spirit. He told us gruesome tales of torture and persecution. Egyptians, he told us, use the corpses of Jewish slaves in their buildings. You mean they used slaves to build their buildings, I asked, and the slaves died from work?

No, said the rabbi. They put the Jewish bodies into the walls and used them as bricks. My father was something of a handyman at the time, and this seemed to be a serious violation of basic building codes, not to mention a surefire way to lose a home sale. Is this brick?

The interested couple asked. No, no, says the realtor. That's corpse. But just as troubling, even more so today in the light of the brutal slaughter taking place in Ukraine were the plagues themselves. God, the rabbi said, struck all the Egyptians with his wrath, not just for our soldiers, Egyptians, young and old, innocent, guilty, suffered locusts and frogs, hail and darkness, beasts running wild and water becoming blood. Mothers nursing their babies, the rabbi's explained, found their breast milk had turned to blood. I'm just going to interject this for a moment here before I go back to the article. Nowhere does the Bible say anything about mother's breast milk turning to blood or milk turning to blood. So if you heard these from the rabbis, heard this from the rabbis, this doesn't do with what the Bible says, just just for the record list. You know, sometimes we read something and don't even think about what we're reading. OK, back to his article.

Yay, my classmates cheered. But Pharaoh, the story continues, still wouldn't relinquish his slaves. Technically, this was God's fault, as he called hardened Pharaoh's heart, but the issue of free will wouldn't begin troubling me until my teens, and so God in his mercy started killing babies. Every firstborn son of the land of Egypt shall die from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sits on the throne to the firstborn of the servant girl. Surely, I wondered, there are some Egyptians who didn't whip Jews. He didn't have anything against Jews at all.

Surely there are Egyptians horrified by slavery, Egyptians who disagree with Pharaoh as often as we do with our own leaders. Everyone, I asked the rabbi, he struck everyone, everyone. The rabbi said, yay, my classmates cheered. God, it seems, paints with a wide brush. He paints with a roller. In Egypt, said a rabbi, he even killed firstborn cattle. He killed cows. If he were mortal, the God of Jews, Christians and Muslims would be dragged to the Hague. And yet we praise him. We emulate him. We implore our children to be like him. Perhaps now, as missiles rain down and the dead are discovered in mass graves, is a good time to stop emulating this hateful God.

Perhaps we can stop extolling his brutality. Perhaps now is a good time to teach our children to pass over God, to be as unlike him as possible. And so God killed them all.

The rabbis and priests and imams can preach to their classrooms. This was wrong, children. God threw Adam and Eve out of Eden for eating an apple they can caution the students. That's called being heavy handed children, cursing a woman for eternity because of these choices. That's called collective punishment, children. They can warn the young.

Don't do that. Boo, the children will jeer. I was raised strictly Orthodox, he writes.

Old school, shtetl fabulous. Every year at the beginning of the Seder, the Passover meal, we welcome in the hungry and poor Jews who can't afford to have a Seder themselves. It's a wonderfully human gesture. A few straight hours of God later at the end of the Seder, we open the front door and call out to him, pour out thy wrath upon the nations that did not know you. And God does, with plagues and floods, with fire and fury on the young and old, the guilty and innocent. And we humans, made in his image, do the same with fixed wing bombers and cluster bombs with self-propelled mortars and thermobaric rocket launchers. Why did God kill the first born cattle, my rabbi said? Because the Egyptians believed they were gods.

Killing gods is an idea I can get behind. This year, at the end of the Seder, let's indeed throw our doors open to strangers, to people who aren't our own, to the terrifying them, to the evil others, those people who seem so different from us, those who those we think are our enemies or who think us theirs, but who, if they sat down on the table with us, we'd no doubt find, despite, who find, excuse me, we'd no doubt find, despise the pharaohs of this world as much as we do and who dream of the same darn, I'll substitute that, saying as us all peace. OK, again, reading it out loud after reading it last night and writing about it, my heart goes out to the author even more. I don't say that in a condescending way. And again, my assumption would be if he happened to be listening to this or read my article, which I don't assume he'll do either. But if he happened to, that he'd be shaking his head, this poor fool, he doesn't get it, you know, thinking of me that way. I don't mean in any condescending way.

I'm just 100 percent sure of the reality of God and the reality of the goodness of God and the reality of the mercy of God, and the reality of the justice of God, not just because of what's written in the Bible, but because of his dealings in my own life for over 50 years. But when I read this, I understand many kids growing up in religious homes, Christian, Jewish, that have these hidden questions and they don't find a way to ask their questions. You're not allowed to say, what? You question God, you question the Bible, you question the pastor, you question the rabbi, you question our traditions. So often people hold on to these questions as opposed to us raising our kids in an environment where if they really are struggling or they really don't see this as right or fair, that we welcome their questions, that we welcome their issues. If you just suppress them, they're going to come out later and they're going to come out probably in a pretty hostile form later. Best thing to do is you teach and train the kids is be sensitive and say, you know, if you have questions about anything, just go ahead and ask.

And if you as a mom or dad don't have answers or as a youth leader don't have answers, that's a great question. Let's get an answer to that together. And you study and learn and get answers.

But this is what happens. So I'm not questioning that in the environment in which he was raised, certain questions were off limits. I don't question that at all. It can happen in a religious environment, but it's counterproductive.

It just causes people to suppress their doubts and then they come out later with intensity. We'll be right back. It's the line of fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown, get on the line of fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH.

Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Thanks for joining us on the line of fire. When you read the Bible, are there passages that trouble you? Not that you find difficult to understand. That seemed pretty clear in terms of what they're saying, but they trouble you because it paints God in a bad picture or it seems to call believers to do things that are morally wrong or you simply can't explain when an atheist sincerely asks you questions or challenge you challenges you or a non religious person asks you a question and I don't know why it's a good question. Fair enough. The Bible tells us they're going to be questions.

How do we know? Because because the nature of the Bible having books like Job and Ecclesiastes in there say if you're not raising the questions, we'll raise them for you. Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. So if you've got a question, difficulty with biblical morality, difficulty with biblical standards, something that strikes you as unfair, maybe something that Mr. Auslander raised in his article, then by all means, give us a call.

Eight six six three four eight seven eight eight four. OK, I want to raise an issue as I interact with this New York Times op ed piece as it raises questions that others have raised as well here from a specific a specific traditional Jewish viewpoint, but of larger universal moral interest. It raises the question of how do we know the difference between right and wrong, between good and bad?

If there is no God, so we are the random products of an unguided evolutionary process, which at its base is moved by the survival of the fittest. Is there any such thing as moral good or moral bad? In other words, do you think that when a lion kills and eats a zebra, that it has any second thoughts about it, that it has any compunctions of conscience, that it struggles and says, was it right for me to kill that zebra to keep myself alive or to keep the cubs alive? No, no.

Why? It's an animal. And this animal is doing what it needs to do to survive. And when the zebra gets away from the lion who's on the edge of starvation, does the zebra think, hey, I preserve my own skin. And so I feel bad for let's just feel bad for the lion is going to die. The lion is a predator.

Get away from the predator. So if we are simply again freak random products of an unguided evolutionary process, which is ultimately driven by survival of the fittest, is there such a thing as right or wrong? You know, we have the saying that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.

Right. And in many ways, that's true. Different cultures esteem different things as being beautiful. You may look at a woman from one very foreign culture and think, oh, that's so unappealing. And the men there think, oh, she's incredibly attractive. And then then one of our beautiful women stands before them and they're like, oh, this poor lady or here's a guy that we think now this guy, he looks he looks strong and fit someone else looks and says, what's bad with him?

You know, when I was getting rid of a car one time in this auto mechanic so I could use these parts, he goes, you know, the same one man's garbage is another man's gold. So is it the same with morality and ethics? I've watched debates between believers and atheists where the atheists had to say that there is nothing intrinsically wrong about Nazis slaughtering Jewish children because there is no intrinsic right or wrong. We may agree on certain things as right or wrong, but a different culture may have a different take on it. A different culture may have a different position on it. So here's a fundamental issue that we have to address.

Right. And this is very common in apologetics and interaction with atheists. But suddenly you have to push because ultimately to say it again, that if we are simply the random results of an unguided evolutionary process, then as C.S. Lewis says, we can't even trust thought itself.

It's these are just neurons firing. This may be our perception of reality, but it has nothing to do with reality or reality itself may not have ultimate right or wrong in it. Hey, after all, if by slaughtering half of the human race, we could preserve the human race for several more generations because of food supply, isn't that a good and humane thing to do rather than have everyone starve to death? I mean, this is some of the early eugenics philosophy and some of the early Margaret Sanger abortion philosophy. So here's what C.S. Lewis wrote. Remember, he was an atheist who intellectually became a theist.

And then after that became converted and became a Christian. Listen to what he wrote. And I have this in my article up on My argument against God, he says, was that the universe seems so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust?

A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust? If the whole show was bad and senseless from a disease, so to speak, why did I, who was supposed to be part of the show, find myself in such a violent reaction against it? He continued, Of course, I could have given up my idea of justice by saying it was nothing but a private idea of my own. But if I did that, then my argument against God collapsed, too. For that argument, the argument depended on saying that the world was really unjust, not simply that it did not happen to please my private fancies. Thus, in the very act of trying to prove that God did not exist, in other words, that the whole of reality was senseless, I found I was forced to assume that one part of reality, namely my idea of justice, was full of sense. Consequently, atheism turns out to be too simple. If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out that it has no meaning, just as if there were no light in the universe and therefore no creature with eyes, we should never know it was dark.

Dark would be without meaning. So in other words, Mr. Ouslander's whole moral outrage against God undercuts rather than supports his argument. Now, you might say, well, I believe in a God, but not the God of the Bible. OK, that's that's a different step. That's a different step. That's saying I believe we were created.

I believe that there is a God of justice and morality, just not the God of the Bible. All right. That's something else to discuss.

But that's quite different than, quote, get rid of God. I've got a ton more to say. And tell you what, I'm going to go to the phones on the other side of the break. And Glenn in Dayton, Ohio, you are first up because I posted a meme about this very topic that you want to talk about.

So I'm going to do this on the on the other side of the break. How about something like the hardening of Pharaoh's heart? How could God be fair and just and say to Pharaoh, repent. Let the children of Israel go. Let my firstborn son go. I'm going to kill your firstborn son. And Pharaoh was like, OK, sounds good to me. I don't want to get killed. My firstborn son get killed and all that. Go ahead. And then God says, you know, I'm going to harden your heart. And I was like, second thought.

No, no. That's not the way it happened. In fact, I have a whole video.

If you've never watched this, I have a short video and then an in-depth video, I don't know, 15, 20 minutes long, and it's linked in my article. That's Dr. Brown Dog, a detailed video actually showing you the Hebrew text and showing you the words to demonstrate first, Pharaoh repeatedly hardens his heart before God does anything one time, another time, another time, another time. Then the first thing the Hebrew says is uses the verb, the verb L'chazek, to strengthen. God then strengthens Pharaoh's heart. He strengthens his resolve. In other words, OK, you want to harden your heart.

You want to say, no, I'm going to strengthen your resolve to do what you want to do. So that's the next thing that happens. And then after that, L'chabed, which is to make heavy. So this is now giving him over to his sin, just like an alcoholic getting drunk. And then the more they drink, the drunker they get and they lose sensibility even more so they want to drink even more. We are given over to our sins and our addictions is a natural result.

And then finally, L'chakshot, which is to harden. That would now be God's judgment on Pharaoh for his cruelty, for his years of cruelty, for following the footsteps of those who for decades and centuries acted with cruelty and on and on it goes. You say, but what about the innocent Egyptians? Well, remember that Israel leaves Egypt with a mixed multitude.

Many want to leave with them. That could even suggest that at this critical time, they could have even joined with Israel. The text does not say that this didn't happen, that they could have joined with Israel and taking refuge in the homes of Israelites so that the destroying angel would pass over them as well. The text does not say that did not happen. But what is implied was that the nation corporately was involved in the enslaving of Israelites and that people actively participated in this, that it was just looking the other way, this was a way of life, this was something they leaned on.

They did not have a civil war over this like America did. All right. And that ultimately judgment fell after repeated warnings, after repeated warnings, after repeated warnings.

But think of this. God waited hundreds of years before he brought judgment. Ultimately, God's patience and mercy are displayed. And the same God gives laws to the children of Israel. Don't hurt the foreigner. Don't hurt the stranger because you know how you are mistreated in Egypt. Don't do that to others. The same God puts forth laws that says, don't put a stumbling block in front of the blind, don't curse the deaf, don't take advantage of the widow or the orphan because God says, I'm their God. I'm the protector of the innocent and the downtrodden.

That's the God of the Bible whom we emulate and who reveals himself to us ultimately in the person of Jesus, keep reading and get to the full revelation of God, which is a demonstration of, as some have said, excessive and certainly undeserved love. We'll be right back. It's the line of fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown, get on the line of fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH. Here again is Dr. Michael Brown.

Welcome. Welcome to the line of fire. In a moment, I'm going to go back to 1966 Time magazine. Oh, yeah. Front cover Time magazine 1966. Then I'm going to jump to Time magazine 1971. Then to the New York Times, 1997. Why? Because of an outrageous op-ed piece posted, published in the New York Times in conjunction with Good Friday and the first day of Passover. So this past Friday, written by a former Orthodox Jew saying we should get rid of God.

Yeah, I've got some edifying, encouraging words about that from my article responding. If you're just tuning in, go to You'll see it as the lead article there. All right, let's go to the phones and I want to store it in Dayton, Ohio. Glenn, are you listening by radio, sir? I have the radio turned off. I'm listening over my phone right now. Okay, well, great.

I appreciate that. But you are listening in a station we've just been on for a few months in Dayton, Ohio, so shout out to everybody on our great new station there in Dayton. Yeah, the Truth 106.5. Come on, man.

That's it. The Truth 106.5. I love it.

We'll get you doing a commercial for us. Yeah, Glenn, go ahead with your question, please. Well, my father was a Baptist over in Indiana for many years, and he passed away about three or four years ago, and I want to thank you also for everything that you do each day. You have a very eloquent way of explaining things. And as a preacher's son growing up in church my whole life, having it forced on me for many years, almost kind of legalistic and then kind of coming back around to church with my family and son and wife. I very much appreciate the delicate way that you have of explaining things. I was convicted a lot lately by some of your messages and some of the other programs that I've heard on 106.5, the Truth here lately. And I was doing some thinking my father taught for many years, as did the other pastor with him, about that women's place in the church.

And I don't want to melt your phone lines here down. I don't mean to offend anyone. I just want to try to be as accurate and correct here as I can be for myself and the others that I'm trying to lead. Also, he taught that women were not to preach in the church. They could teach over children. They could teach over other women. It's referring to the scripture, I believe it's in 1 Timothy 2.12, where Paul was instructing Timothy.

And could you give me some clarification? Our church that we're going to now does a wonderful lot of outreach, but it has definitely caused me some concern. I feel like things are getting too watered down. We're so worried about luring people in the door that we're not staying in some ways kind of strict enough. And this is one of those areas that I have a great concern. It says the path is narrow. Not everyone is going to make it. And so I worry if we start broadening the path too much to pull others in, then we're losing sight of that narrow path is also. So could you give me a little clarification on that, please? Thank you so much, brother.

Oh, yeah. And thanks for the kind words, Glenn. So just super quick, why did you understand in your father's view that a woman could teach other women or could teach children, but not men?

Why was that? Well, I understand the scripture reference, but what was the reason behind it? Well, it's to my understanding, I believe it was explained in Timothy there as well in that scripture that it went all the way back to Eve and the way that she was deceived. And through her her deception, Adam then follow.

So in other words, women are more easily deceived, right? Would be the idea. Yep.

All right. So why have why have them teaching other women and why have them teaching impressionable children? Well, that's a good question. It's a very good question.

If they're not fit to teach the women and children, why have them teaching anyone? And that scripture actually says they are to be silent. Right. Exactly. But I don't mean to be offensive there with it. But no, no, no, not at all. But what I just want to point out is that the way it's often interpreted, it can't mean that, because if it's OK for women to teach children who who are not really going to be able to think these issues through and other women who presumably are not as educated in the word as the men, especially in the ancient world, right, the ones they should be able to teach are the men, because the men can say that's bogus.

Throw it out, whereas the others will be led astray. So we do know that women are called to teach and train their children in the home. We do know that women are called to teach and train other women. Right.

And just look at this for a second. Romans 16, Romans 16. I commend you, our sister Phoebe, a servant of the Church of Cancri, that you may welcome her in the Lord in a worthy way of the saints and help her in whatever she may need from you, for she has been a patron of many and of myself. Greet Prisca and Aquila elsewhere, Priscilla and Aquila. So notice the woman's name comes before the husband's name. This is the normal way.

The more it goes both ways. But more commonly, it's Priscilla first and Aquila. My fellow workers in Christ Jesus who risk their necks from my life to whom not only I give thanks, but all the churches of the Gentiles give thanks as well. Greet also the church in their house. Greet my beloved.

And he goes on with other names. Greet Mary, who has worked hard from you. Greet Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen and fellow prisoners. They are well known to the apostles. They were in Christ before me.

It goes on and on. He greets woman after woman in this list here as as co-workers, as to be honored, to be received as as well known among the apostolic leaders, as in prison for their faith. And we know the early church women were super active. Yesterday I posted this. Someone sent it to me and I posted it just to generate some interesting conversation on Facebook. And I just said, this will certainly stir some controversy. Then later I posted my own views. But I just it's a meme and it's meant to get attention. And it says in the interest of biblical accuracy, all the preaching about the resurrection this Easter Sunday will be done by women, because, of course, they were the ones that first believed and went and told the men he's risen and the men didn't believe it initially. So it's playing on that. My understanding, I didn't even I didn't even see that. So that's funny. Oh, yeah.

And of course, let's see, it's got one point six thousand reactions and three hundred eighteen comments, so people people joined in. My own understanding is the issue in First Timothy. It's being addressed is one of usurping authority over a man taking authority that doesn't belong to them and teaching accordingly.

Not that a woman cannot teach a man at all. You know, for example, Acts eighteen, it says Priscilla and Aquila together and her name first taught Apollos. And again, you've got these other women who are highly esteemed that Paul references in his letters. And then you have in First Corinthians eleven, a woman, as long as it's in proper authority structure, can can prophesy. So she's speaking forth God's words and can pray.

This is in public meetings. So and then when Paul says, hey, what's the proper order? In First Corinthians fourteen, one has a song, one has a revelation, one has an interpretation, one has a tongue, et cetera. So I see women as anointed and called by God to do virtually everything that that men can do in the church, but they are not primarily called to have governmental authority.

So God may raise up as an exception, a Deborah. But the norm and it's the Norman churches around the world. It's also the Norman governmental leaders around the world that the governmental authority is meant to be male.

So you do have exceptions to the rule. But even though I've worked with women who are senior pastors and preach for them and they're anointed, I don't believe that's the primary pattern or the norm. And what would concern me was if the church did not have biblical conviction, but was rather just trying to show how progressive they were, that they gave women featured roles so as to win the lost. I don't imagine that's the case, because in most of society, that's not a debate.

You know, most of society is completely egalitarian in that regard. So I would just think that they believe it's biblical and therefore they do it. And as long as you have the senior leadership as male and things are done under that, then to me, that's a biblical order. And women preaching, teaching, ministering in a thousand different ways as they're anointed.

Wonderful. And think of this. You know, think of the books that have been written by godly women like Elizabeth Elliott over the years, do we not read them as men? Because that would be a woman teaching a man. If you can't read Corrie 10 Boom, if she gives a testimony, you can read it. But if she shares the teaching in the midst of it, you can't. Surely that's not what what scripture is telling us.

If there are other things the church did and that actually watered down the gospel, that's a whole separate issue. But just to focus on this, you know, meditate on Romans 16, especially, sir. And I think there'll be some some good insights that they come out of that in the process.

Thank you very much for the call. Now, listen, this is something, for instance, obviously we don't divide over. Right. We don't divide over. And I do understand arguments in different directions here. And I'm not trying to cater to women or to cater to men. I'm trying to understand the word and please the Lord in the midst.

We have differences here, but not differences we divide over. OK, I'm going to go back to your calls in a moment. But first, let me take you back to 1966, 1966.

And I want you to look at this cover. All right. Now, bear in mind, Time magazine puts this out April 8th, 1966, which is two days before Easter Sunday.

So once again, on a Good Friday. Right. And this is the question, the front cover of Time for the first time without a picture, it's always had a picture, right, a picture and then a caption this time, no picture.

Never did that before. And Time was really influential back then for those that were can remember that. Right. And this is it just says it's a black cover. Right.

Time written in white and then with red letters. Is God dead? Is God dead? This was Time magazine, 1966.

All right. Two days before resurrection Sunday. Therefore, on Good Friday. And the article, the lead article said, yeah, it may have been alive before and relevant to people, but he's dead now.

Hmm. What did Time publish five years later? Five years later, in June of 1971. This is the front cover of Time. It's a red cover. The Jesus Revolution is written in white and there's a hippie like looking Jesus on the front cover. And the lead article talks about the incredible wave of salvations of hippies, radicals, rebels, just like me that very year coming to faith five years after Time magazine asks, is God dead? Time magazine is proclaiming the Jesus Revolution. What do you know?

Magic. It's the line of fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown, get on the line of fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH. Here again is Dr. Michael Brown.

Thanks for joining us on the line of fire. Okay, so I started the show talking about this outrageous. Let's get rid of God editorial posted insensitively by the New York Times on April 15th, which this year was both Good Friday and that night, the first day of Passover. Well, here's what's interesting. Back in 1997, the New York Times had a front page article, not front page of the religion section, not front page of the op-ed section, but front page of the New York Times itself. I'm looking at it and check this out.

This is May because the exact date, May 27th, 1997. And for those watching, we've got a picture of the front page. We'll scroll down to show you the article. It was called In Florida, a Revival That Came But Didn't Go. It was written by Rick Bragg. This is two years into the Brownsville Revival, and it was favorable coverage, and Rick Bragg told evangelist Steve Hill as he stayed for the meetings and listened to the preaching. He said the media is going to follow. In other words, it's going to get a flood of media coming now that New York Times has covered it, and New York Times was much more influential back then as well. And because he was positive on it, it caused some other media to not attack as aggressively as they might have. So listen to what he wrote. So I'm expecting the next headlines and front page stories in the years ahead to be the stories of what God is doing in America, the stories of the mercy he's pouring out, the stories of the lives radically changing, a new type of a Jesus revolution, of God moving powerfully throughout the nation.

That's what I'm looking for. Just like Time magazine 66 says, is God dead and five years later is proclaiming the Jesus revolution? So New York Times in 2022 is saying, let's get rid of God. And who knows when they'll be talking about what God's doing around America like they did in 97.

So here's how the article starts. The first of them get here at dawn and wait all day facing the door. By noon, the line outside the modern looking brown brick church stretches for a city block pilgrims from around the world sit or stand in the parking lot and during heat sun their own expectation. It'd be too hard if they were waiting for just a possible encounter with God.

But this is no weight at all. The people in line say because they know with absolute conviction that he God is just inside. He's here. So Jennifer, Jennifer Molson, a 20 year old, 21 year old college student from California who, like hundreds of thousands, believes that she felt the hand of God. The moment she stepped over the threshold at the Brownsville Assembly of God. This is a place God has chosen to change many, many lives, she said. Revivals come and go.

But what has been happening here night after night for almost two years is different. What started as a typical temporary revival in Father's Day in 1995 had snowballed into what is apparently the largest and longest running Pentecostal revival in America in almost a century. And it goes on from there.

I'll stop reading there. And by the way, it didn't start as a typical revival. It started as a Sunday morning service with a guest speaker where God started moving and they went on with extra services and those services went on a few more days and a few more weeks and a few more months.

Ultimately, for the better part of five years, four or five nights a week, services running five and six hours a night, people coming from over one hundred thirty nations. And I was there. I was one of the leaders. God called me into it one year into into the revival. So I was there when the New York Times reporter came. I was there as he was interviewing Steve Hill and getting perspectives on things we remember vividly in the midst of the schedule and he heard the testimonies of the lives being changed.

And to this day, I run into people around the world, literally around the world. The moment they see me, Dr. Brown, I was with you in Pensacola, God changed my life. And they're still excited about it. Sometimes they break down crying, not not with nostalgia. Just that was so special.

But I've been a wretch since some some of Duster memories. Oh, God was so near. It was so extraordinary. The presence of God was so real. The repentance, so deep, the encounter with his holiness, so overwhelming.

The revelation of his love, so incredible. And they remember back, but many are telling me I've never been the same. It's twenty five years later, by the way. Emotionalism doesn't do that. Can't do that. Emotionalism does not change your life for decades that follow.

Emotionalism gives you a temporary up and then the down crash is worse. And the devil doesn't do it. Oh, he counterfeits everything. He doesn't counterfeit people loving Jesus, loving the word of God, loving holiness, following the God of the Bible, being active witnesses, Satan doesn't do that. Otherwise, he would divide against himself.

He would be destroying his own kingdom. So I tell you the truth, whenever I see these things, New York Times with this outrageous op-ed, Time magazine with some outrageous piece news, some outrageous piece, I always wonder what are they going to be reporting on next when God's moving in such undeniable ways? And it's going to be very hard to demonize what he's doing because of the amount of people whose lives are being dramatically changed. So I'm waiting for another story like the revival story to make it to the front page of The New York Times or the front cover of Newsweek or Time or whatever mags and websites and influential places are out there. Yeah, I fully expect it.

Well, I'm not looking to the secular media to do our work. I just believe that God's going to be moving in so many amazing ways all around America that it will be hard to ignore. That's my hope. That's my prayer.

That's my expectation. That being said, how would you like to never miss an article that I write or never miss a video that we put out or never miss a special resource offer that we put a few things to get a discounted price or a new book is coming out? How would you like to never miss that simple way? Sign up for my emails.

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If you haven't asked Dr. All right, let's get back to the phones. We go to Joseph in Alabama. Thanks for calling the line of fire. Thank you very much. How are you doing today? Doing well. Thank you.

So my question is a little background. I've been married twice. My first marriage, she cheated on me and left. I'm remarried now.

And a friend of mine has been doing a study on this. And Matthew, I believe it's Matthew 18. Jesus did pretty much he doesn't justify divorce, but he gives the reason of fornication or the Greek word, I think, is for me. So is that speaking just through the Israelites?

Or the Gentiles as well, and I'm not looking for just a reason to get a divorce. I want to know, am I living in adultery now? Right. So yeah, Joseph, understood.

First, I commend you for your attitude. In other words, you want to do what's right in God's sight, no matter how painful and difficult it is so that that's the only posture we can have as servants of God. We have to obey him no matter how difficult. Having said that, my understanding of Matthew 5 and Matthew 19 is that if a spouse has committed adultery and reconciliation is not possible, then you can divorce and remarry. Now, the question is, why does Jesus, as it's translated into Greek, use the word for fornication rather than adultery?

And the general answer that would be given is that porneia is much more widespread in its use. It can refer to all types of sexual sin. And so, for example, if let's say a woman had sex with another woman, a man's married, the woman has sex with another woman. Is that adultery, you know, is that really adultery? Wouldn't it be adultery if she had sex with a married man? And well, porneia would cover all of that.

Some have tried to argue that he was only speaking to the Jewish people because you could be betrothed before you were married and if you were betrothed and you're and the person you were betrothed to. So it's engaged but beyond engaged. So that person that you're committed to, they have sex with someone else.

Well, that's porneia. And now you can divorce them and then you can go ahead and marry somebody else. I don't believe and the vast majority of biblical scholars don't believe that Jesus was primarily speaking about that.

Rather, the word is used to speak of sexual immorality in a broader sense. So my understanding of scripture also, first Corinthians seven, repulses if you're married to an unbeliever and the unbeliever departs, that you're not bound, that it means legally bound. So let's say you and your wife were not saved. You got married. You came to faith.

You were born again. And she says, I want nothing to do with you or your God. And she abandoned you and leaves the marriage that you would be free to remarry. So my understanding, Joseph, is if adultery was involved, that you did have grounds for divorce, especially if you tried to reconcile.

And that was not possible. And and then from there you are free to remarry. That's how I understand the scriptures. And I do not believe the argument that limits porneia to sexual sin committed by someone who is betrothed or in our case, engaged.

Plus, you know, even more committed than an engagement. I just encourage you to study the scripture so that you are convicted yourself, that you are sure yourself. You know, Mark and Luke don't mention the exception clause. But the fact that it's in Matthew obviously means that it carries nonetheless. So I'd encourage you just to be sure before God. I've given you my view that says it is not adultery if there were valid grounds for divorce. But just be sure in your own heart that you're convinced. That's what scripture says, that you can have peace in your relationship before God with your wife moving forward. Friends, let's stand strong together. Jesus wants to work through you and through me. Another program powered by the Truth Network.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-30 05:35:49 / 2023-04-30 05:55:57 / 20

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