Christian Life: Boldness, Bravery, Courage, Guts, Stand-Up!!, etc....

"Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness."-Genesis 15:6

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""The wicked flee though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion."-Proverbs 28

John 2 (with text - press on more info.)

Jesus Clears the Temple Courts-John 2

13 When it was almost time for the Jewish Passover, Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 In the temple courts he found people selling cattle, sheep and doves, and others sitting at tables exchanging money. 15 So he made a whip out of cords, and drove all from the temple courts, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. 16 To those who sold doves he said, "Get these out of here! Stop turning my Father's house into a market!” 17 His disciples remembered that it is written: "Zeal for your house will consume me."[c]
18 The Jews then responded to him, "What sign can you show us to prove your authority to do all this?"
19 Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days."
20 They replied, "It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?” 21 But the temple he had spoken of was his body. 22 After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said. Then they believed the scripture and the words that Jesus had spoken.
23 Now while he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, many people saw the signs he was performing and believed in his name.[d] 24 But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all people. 25 He did not need any testimony about mankind, for he knew what was in each person. ...

"29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus."

Praise and worship - Clear the Temple

"Jesus clearing the temple of His Fathers house as described in John 2:12 portrays a powerful image. Jesus goes to Jerusalem during the Jewish passover and on entering the temple courts, finds people selling sheep, cattle, doves and all manner of wares.
Angered, Jesus clears the temple, dispensing and turning out everything that shouldnt be there.
What a powerful metaphor for our own heart, mind and soul when we come to Christ. When we offer our bodies as living sacrifices, the Spirit searches us for anything that doesnt belong in a heart and soul dedicated to God. And as we prayerfully ask, the rubbish is cleared out and we are restored in Him, by the grace of God."

*see Life: Sin-Less, Righteousness, etc..

*see Bible

"34 The crowd spoke up, “We have heard from the Law that the Messiah will remain forever, so how can you say, 'The Son of Man must be lifted up'? Who is this 'Son of Man'?"

35 Then Jesus told them, "You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. Whoever walks in the dark does not know where they are going. 36 Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light." When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them. "-John 12

As I write this today-preparing for "Super Church" (Sunday School)- (Sunday, January 9th 2011) looking for Scripture (above and below) verses on this site's topic, I'm remembered of some situations in life where I feel God has given me "boldness" to speak against the "unrighteousness" around me. I have to becareful to not say that I'm "speaking" and "not judging"..

"..7 But to stop this thing from spreading any further among the people, we must warn them to speak no longer to anyone in this (JESUS') name/b>.”

18 Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. 19 But Peter and John replied, “Which is right in God’s eyes: to listen to you, or to him? You be the judges! 20 As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”

21 After further threats they let them go. They could not decide how to punish them, because all the people were praising God for what had happened. 22 For the man who was miraculously healed was over forty years old. ...-Acts 4

"31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly. "- Acts 4
*see Teachings: Triune God, Holy Spirit, etc...

-Acts 9:28- ""So Saul stayed with them and moved about freely in Jerusalem, speaking boldly in the name of the Lord."

Acts 13:46 "Then Paul and Barnabas answered them boldly: “We had to speak the word of God to you first. Since you reject it and do not consider yourselves worthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles.

Acts 14:3 "So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of his grace by enabling them to perform signs and wonders.

Acts 18:26 "He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately.

Acts 19:8 "Paul entered the synagogue and spoke boldly there for three months, arguing persuasively about the kingdom of God.

Acts 28:31 "He proclaimed the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ—with all boldness and without hindrance!

What is faith? Where do you put your faith in? I decifinally write about this after another challenge (more down below) in my life (Saturday, December 1st of 2007). I was at a "town hall meeting" with a visiting U.S. Senator (see Coleman stresses renewable energy during brief stop) later this part of the week. I know he was there to listen to our community's concerns or issues going on in our presnet day. However, I was kind of getting tired of some of the citizens/fellow neighbors of my community complaining. In fact, I've heard enough at this point after hearing many repeating the same concern-"illegal immigrants" in our country" from several folks in places I've been around (e.g. waiting for a tire change in St. Paul this summer). In fact, it's been used in the past where they use "them" as scapegoats to complain or point their fingers as "economic hindrances". Whenever our economy goes bad, they like to blame others instead of taking responsibility. We as citizens of America can sometimes depend too much on government. Whether its dependence on health care, social security, jobs, etc... I feel the government can do so much. It's like one of the famous speeches by JFK, "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what YOU can do for your country". From my years of education , I've been taught to "be involved" or "be the solution" in times of crisis.

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  • Ex-banker says he's giving Wikileaks files on rich By RAPHAEL G. SATTER, Associated Press Raphael G. Satter, Associated Press – Mon Jan 17, 10:01 am ET

  • "LONDON – A former Swiss banker on Monday supplied documents to WikiLeaks that he alleges detail attempts by wealthy business leaders and lawmakers to evade tax payments.
    Rudolf Elmer, an ex-employee of Swiss-based Bank Julius Baer, said there were 2,000 account holders named in the documents, but refused to give details of the companies or individuals involved.
    He has previously offered files to WikiLeaks on financial activities in the Cayman Islands and faces a court hearing in Zurich on Wednesday to answer charges of coercion and violating Switzerland's strict banking secrecy laws.
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    ""In Germany they came first for the Communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn't speak up because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me, and by that time no one was left to speak up."

    -- by Martin Niemöller, prominent German anti-Nazi theologian and Lutheran pastor, best known as the author of the poem First they came.... (First They Came .... poem by Martin Niemöller 64)

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    *note: persecution happens to all religions, but there has been a higher rate amongts Christians

    Warnings and Encouragements Luke 12

    "1 Meanwhile, when a crowd of many thousands had gathered, so that they were trampling on one another, Jesus began to speak first to his disciples, saying: “Be[a] on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. 2 There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. 3 What you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight, and what you have whispered in the ear in the inner rooms will be proclaimed from the roofs.

    4 "I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. 5 But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him. 6 Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. 7 Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

    8 "I tell you, whoever publicly acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God. 9 But whoever disowns me before others will be disowned before the angels of God. 10 And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.

    11 "When you are brought before synagogues, rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend yourselves or what you will say, 12 for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.” "



  • Christians speak out as China's leader visits USA Posted: 21 January, 2011

  • "USA (MNN) ― United States lawmakers didn't let Chinese President Hu Jintao off the hook when it came to China's human rights abuses. According to reports, House Speaker John Boehner says those at the House meeting with the Chinese leader "raised our strong, ongoing concerns with reports of human rights violations in China, including the denial of religious freedom."
    Jintao was in Washington for a state visit to talk about U.S.-China relations politically, socially and economically. Unfortunately, many believe the Chinese president side-stepped the issues. That concerns many organizations concerned about religious freedom in China.
    President of Open Doors USA Carl Moeller says, "The rights of Christians in China have been routinely disregarded over the years."
    In an interview with MNN's Ruth Kramer, he said, "Often in our rush to embrace China's economic opportunities, we fail to look at their just abysmal human rights record. Even today we know of at least dozens of Christian activists who are being held illegally in China and being prevented from using their voice to speak on behalf of human rights abuses."
    According to Moeller, today's most well-known case is that of Christian lawyer Gao Zhisheng. "He has been held illegally, and actually we have documentation of his torture under Chinese arrest simply for speaking out on behalf of minority religious groups, including Christians, in China."
    Zhisheng was initially seized by public security officials on Feb. 4, 2009. Shortly after his wife and two children fled China to seek asylum in the United States, Gao was held virtually incommunicado for more than a year before police staged his brief reappearance in Beijing last April 6. He again vanished on April 20 while in the company of Chinese police.
    Open Doors is drawing attention to this case and others, "asking Christians to speak out on behalf of Chinese Christians who are suffering and to not forget that, while China has made great progress since the days of Mao Zedong, it is still a highly repressive regime and one of the worst human rights abusers by all nations."
    Moeller says Christians can do something. He says believers spoke out about China's refusal to allow Christians to attend Lausanne 2010 in South Africa, and that embarrassed the country. "That embarrassment does force the government to do some things right, and I think that embarrassment still needs to be maintained as a tool for the American church."
    With 11 percent of the U.S. debit held by China, the U.S. government has less negotiating power. Moeller still thinks China can be influenced. "If we continue to integrate it into our U.S. foreign policy at the highest levels -- State Department and the President, then I think we can still see some good effect leveraging there."
    In the meantime, Open Doors continues to aid Christians in the country. Moeller says Christians are persecuted when "their faith brings them into conflict with their government. Their government wants to control and restrict the growth of the church. But the Holy Spirit is not letting that happen. The church in China is growing remarkably. And Open Doors has the privilege of helping to equip that church in its growth."
    Moeller says where there's persecution, there's growth. Pray that Christians will continue to be bold in their faith, have the resources they need to grow, and the support to affect that growth. "




    "We as American Christians, who enjoy freedom, must stand up for our brothers and sisters in Christ who have not the freedom to worship, to build churches, to share the Gospel! Let us not close our eyes and get active! Christians in muslim dominated countries suffer severe persecution on a daily basis and pay a high price just to be a Christian. What price are we willing to pay?
    The pictures shown in the beginning of this clip are actual pictures from the victims of the recent church attack in Baghdad, as well as pictures from the Armenian Genocide, where 2 million Christians were killed by Muslims.
    STOP THE PERSECUTION! Let's use our freedom and speak up for those who cannot speak up for themselves!"

    "8 Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves,
    for the rights of all who are destitute.
    9 Speak up and judge fairly;
    defend the rights of the poor and needy. "
    -Proverbs 31

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  • What protesters in Arab nations do -- and don't -- have in common By Josh Levs, CNN January 27, 2011 7:38 p.m. EST

  • "(CNN) -- Protesters who have taken to the streets in several Arab nations of North Africa are angry at their own governments, and lashing out over some specific problems in their countries. But what they're looking for -- and, in the end, what inspired them to stand up and demonstrate -- is very similar, experts on the region said Thursday.
    "They all want the same," said Emile Hokayem, with the International Institute for Strategic Studies in the Middle East. "They're all protesting about growing inequalities, they're all protesting against growing nepotism. The top of the pyramid was getting richer and richer."
    Speaking to CNN about the recent demonstrations that have occurred, to varying extent, in Algeria, Egypt and Tunisia in northern Africa, and Yemen on the Arabian Peninsula, Hokayem said the protesters were also standing up "against a high level of police brutality."
    "Fundamentally it's a question of dignity. People's dignity has been under assault for decades," he said.
    Juan Cole, a Middle East historian at the University of Michigan and a blogger, put it this way: "There's a feeling a lot of people are being left behind."
    The protesters are driven by economic frustrations, "discontent with authoritarian character of the regime," and the "feeling that there's no real representation" -- although to different degrees in each nation, Cole said.
    Across all four countries, the protest movements are "largely driven by young people" and include a "high proportion of the educated middle class," he said. There's "a feeling amongst that middle class that they're not being given the opportunities in life that their degrees warrant -- what historians would call a 'blocked elite.'"
    The worldwide economic crisis helped trigger the demonstrations by adding to economic pressures at home, and showing up in things like petroleum and food prices, Cole said.
    But there are differences among the protest movements as well.
    In Egypt, "the state probably has done more to protect people" from rising food prices by offering subsidies, Cole said. The Egyptian economy was stagnant for decades, but in the past 10 years started to grow -- creating bigger differences between rich and poor, Cole said.
    "And I think some of the protest is over the ways in which the labor movements have gotten left behind and haven't shared in the economic growth" in that country, he said.
    In Algeria, where protests have been relatively small, the demonstrations "look to me like an after-effect of the civil war that Algeria had between the fundamentalists and the secular generalists," Cole added.
    Yemen has also faced great internal strife, which serves as a background to the wave of protests, he said. The dire poverty in Yemen has also left questions about how many people have access to water, he said. "It's a deeply poverty-stricken country which is getting worse off. ... People are desperate there."
    In Tunisia, the government was run by an especially small clique, "a kind of mafia state," which people are railing against, Cole said. "The tightness of that clique and the way in which it dominated the economy is beyond anything you see elsewhere. People just weren't being let into the system to benefit."
    Hokayem said that "the key differences have to do with the makeup of these societies." For example, "Egypt is more diverse, a much bigger country," while Tunisia has a "pretty homogeneous population."
    Also, the military plays a different role in the different societies, he said. In Tunisia, it is "small and underfunded" and not a major instrument of power, unlike in Egypt, where the military is a much bigger player, he said.
    But while the context for each protest movement may be unique, "at the end of the day, the real driver is psychology," Hokayem said.
    He noted two more key similarities among the protest movements: "The Islamists don't seem to be on the forefront in any of those countries," he said. "Up to now, it has been a mix of separate leftist and moderate Islamic movements."
    And unlike other protests seen in the Arab world in recent years, the protests aren't against the West -- nor do they seem inspired by the West. "The West is irrelevant in a way," he said. Grievances at home "are driving all of this."


    Social Justice

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