The endless attempts to remove a War Memorial that has been there since 1954 has entered another phase… Makes me sick. “X’
U.S. judge orders landmark California cross taken down
- View Gallery Mt. Soledad War Memorial in La Jolla
By Dan Whitcomb
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A massive cross that serves as part of a war memorial on a San Diego hilltop must be dismantled because it has been found to violate a constitutional ban on government endorsement of religion, a federal judge grudgingly ruled on Thursday.
The decision by U.S. District Judge Larry Burns marks the latest development in a long-running legal battle over the 43-foot-tall cross, a local landmark that has stood on top of Mount Soledad since 1954 and is visible for miles.
Burns stayed his order to give the Obama administration and the association that erected the cross, which have fought its removal all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, a chance to file another appeal. Otherwise, he said, the monument must be taken down within 90 days.
“This is a victory for religious liberty,” said Daniel Mach, director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s program on freedom of religion and belief who argued the matter for the plaintiffs in a hearing before Burns on Thursday.
“We firmly support the government’s efforts to honor the service of those who fought and died for this country, but there are many ways to do that without playing favorites with religion,” Mach said.
The case hinged on whether it is legal for a religious symbol to be prominently displayed on public land and whether the cross violated the U.S. Constitution’s requirement on separation of church and state.
The Mount Soledad cross has been the subject of litigation since 1989, when two veterans sued San Diego to get it off city land. In 2006, Congress intervened in the dispute, resulting in the federal government taking ownership of the property.
A group of plaintiffs, including the Jewish War Veterans of the United States of America, then sued. The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals court ruled that the dominance of the cross conveyed a message of government endorsement of religion.
The Obama administration and the Mount Soledad Memorial Association, which erected the cross, appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, supported by 20 U.S. states and various veterans groups in arguing the cross should be allowed as part of the memorial.
In June 2012, the Supreme Court declined to take the case, letting the Ninth Circuit’s ruling stand. In ordering that the cross be taken down, Burns said on Thursday he did not agree with the Ninth Circuit’s ruling but that his hands were tied.
The cross, located between the Pacific Ocean and a major interstate highway, is surrounded by walls displaying granite plaques that commemorate veterans or veterans groups. Easter services were held annually at the cross from 1954 until at least 2000, according to court documents.
The Mount Soledad Memorial Association, which erected the cross in place of another cross that had stood on that spot since 1913, could not immediately be reached for comment on Thursday’s ruling.
(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Cynthia Johnston and Cynthia Osterman)
JUST ADDED -Received this in my e-mail-
Judge Says Tear Down Famous Veterans Memorial Cross!
Liberty Institute vows to fight to U.S. Supreme Court
Dear Friend of Liberty,
Liberty Institute needs your immediate action in defense of veterans and religious liberty.
On Thursday, a U.S. District Judge ruled for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) that the nationally famous Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial Cross overlooking San Diego, California, must be torn down.
Liberty Institute vows to appeal the ruling and fight all the way to the Supreme Court if necessary.
We represent the official caretaker of the memorial—the Mt. Soledad Memorial Association—at no charge, through the generous donations of our supporters.
HISTORIC COURT BATTLE AHEAD “The judge reluctantly agreed with a previous ruling by the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that this hallowed veterans memorial must be removed,” said Hiram Sasser, Director of Litigation for Liberty Institute.
Sasser was present at the hearing. He said, “We are thankful, however, that the Judge allowed the Memorial Cross to stand as the case is appealed. And we will appeal—all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court if necessary. And we are confident we will win.”
WHAT IS AT STAKE The outcome of this case touches thousands of other veterans memorials across the nation. If the ACLU can force the government to tear down the Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial Cross, where will they stop? What will happen to the 20-foot Canadian Cross of Sacrifice or the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery?
The Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial has stood since 1954 as a symbol of the selfless sacrifice and service of our nation’s military. The memorial has a 29-foot Latin cross surrounded by six concentric walls that display the photos, names and diverse religious symbols of our veterans who paid the ultimate price for freedom.
For more than 20 years, this veterans memorial has been the subject of a prolonged lawsuit brought about by the ACLU because of the inclusion of the cross.
WHAT YOU CAN DO Liberty Institute needs your financial support as we appeal and fight this decision. “We are confident we can win, just as we won the Mojave Desert Veterans Memorial case at the U.S. Supreme Court,” said Kelly Shackelford, President and CEO of Liberty Institute.
With the support of our donors, we won the Mojave Desert case and kept a memorial cross standing after repeated legal attempts to tear it down.
Thank you for your gift to keep the ACLU from tearing down the Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial Cross.
Kelly Shackelford President and CEO
A briefing held at Camp Shelby in Mississippi listed Evangelical Christian groups alongside domestic hate groups like the Ku Klux Klan, Neo-Nazis, the Black Panthers and the Nation of Islam.
Soldiers at Fort Hood were warned that participating in or donating money to evangelical Christian groups or Tea Party groups could result in military punishment.
Last year an Army Reserve training brief listed Catholics and Evangelical Christians as examples of religious extremism.
“Men and women of faith – who have served the Army faithfully for centuries – have been likened to those who regularly threaten the peace and security of the United States. It is dishonorable for any U.S. military entity to allow this type of improper characterization.” — Ron Crews, Executive Director of the Chaplain Alliance For Religious Liberty
The Army repeatedly claims these briefings were isolated incidents where instructors used materials that were not approved by the military.
What’s In Your Forehead?
The English word “forehead” is generally used to refer to the upper part of the face, above the eyes. The original Hebrew and Greek words of the Holy Scriptures also sometimes use the word that way, but more often use the term “forehead” to describe what is foremost inside the head, not merely on, or a part of, the outside surface. The Bible doesn’t just use the term “forehead” to describe what is physically foremost inside the head, but what is consciously foremost inside the head, much more like the term “heart and mind” is used today.
Will you choose “the seal of our God in your forehead” or “the image of the beast in your forehead”?
The Hebrew word pronounced may-tsak literally means to be in the clear, or prominently visible, and was sometimes used to refer to the part of the head that was prominent, as in these two examples for Aaron and Goliath, both of which refer to the upper part of their head:
“And thou shalt put it on a blue lace, that it may be upon the mitre; upon the forefront of the mitre it shall be. And it shall be upon Aaron’s forehead [see also Christ's Mitre], that Aaron may bear the iniquity of the holy things, which the children of Israel shall hallow in all their holy gifts; and it shall be always upon his forehead, that they may be accepted before The Lord.” (Exodus 28:37-38 KJV)
“And David put his hand in his bag, and took thence a stone, and slang it, and smote the Philistine in his forehead, that the stone sunk into his forehead; and he fell upon his face to the earth.” (1 Samuel 17:49 KJV)
Along with the literal-meaning examples shown above, may-tsak was also used in a figurative sense, to denote a “hardheadedness” for, or against, God:
“Therefore the showers have been withholden, and there hath been no latter rain; and thou hadst a whore’s forehead, thou refusedst to be ashamed.” (Jeremiah 3:3 KJV)
“Behold, I have made thy face strong against their faces, and thy forehead strong against their foreheads. As an adamant harder than flint have I made thy forehead: fear them not, neither be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house” (Ezekiel 3:8-9 KJV)
In the New Testament, the Greek word that is translated as “forehead,” pronounced met-oh-pon, means the middle of the head – but is consistently used to refer to the “heart and mind” usage. For example, the 144,000 are made so by the “seal of our God in their foreheads”
“Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel” (Revelation 7:3-4 KJV)
“And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.” (Revelation 14:1 KJV)
The infamous “mark of the Beast” that will be “in their right hand, or in their foreheads” will also be a matter of “heart and mind.” The mark of the beast will be about thoughts and actions, opposing God’s Law, for which they will face God’s wrath, while God’s true people will have the “seal of our God in their foreheads” to “keep the Commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus”
“And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name” (Revelation 13:15-17 KJV)
“And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the Commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” (Revelation 14:9-12 KJV)
Those who refuse to receive the mark of the beast in their foreheads will reign with Christ “and his name shall be in their foreheads”:
“And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon [literally, in] their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.” (Revelation 20:4 KJV)
“And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the Throne of God [see The Throne Of God, From Heaven To Earth] and of the Lamb. In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. And there shall be no more curse: but the Throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and His servants shall serve Him: And they shall see His face; and His Name shall be in their foreheads.” (Revelation 22:1-4 KJV)
Fact Finder: How were Jewish Frontlets and Phylacteries invented and used for a principle in which The Lord actually meant that His Law was to be foremost in their thoughts and deeds? See Frontlets and Phylacteries
Video: Waters turn ‘blood-red, biblical color’
Startling phenomenon draws comparisons to end times, prophecy
Afterthought – this ought to have been included in my America Implodes Part III “X”
Remaining part of post from Godfather Politics:
Sgt. Monk has retained the services of attorney Mike Berry of the Liberty Institute. Berry stated that the Air Force is denying Monk’s account of what was said and says that this should be a warning to everyone in the military. Even though Sgt Monk has a 19 year spotless career and is within one year of retirement, he could find himself being forcibly discharged from the Air Force with no retirement benefits at all because of his Christian faith.
“You cannot criminalize somebody’s thoughts. You criminalize actions, not thoughts. Within the military never before have we reached that status.”
“We’re now at this juncture … if you don’t believe, or think in a particular manner, that’s going to be held against you.”
“He had to agree with her beliefs, and if he wasn’t able to do that, he was deemed unfit to hold that position. This is a dangerous and slippery slope … that somehow the government is going to be delving into your thoughts.”
It seems that Senior Master Sgt. Monk is not the only one being singled out by the military because of their Christian faith and belief that homosexuality is a sin. Steve Branson is the pastor at Village Parkway Baptist Church in San Antonio. His church is about 20 minutes away from Lackland Air Force Base and a number of military personnel attend services at his church. In a Fox News Radio interview with Todd Starnes, Branson stated:“Anyone who doesn’t hold to the right view on homosexuality is having a very difficult time.”
“I’m raising the warning. It’s not a good situation out here. The military’s job is not to fight these kinds of battles. Christians are having to walk so carefully. I hear it every Sunday at church.”
As long as Obama and his liberally tailored military command remain in control, Christians will find it more and more difficult to live their faith while serving our nation. I believe this is being done deliberately to tailor the entire military to one that will follow Obama into his war against patriotic Americans. Christian soldiers are less likely to obey orders to fire upon fellow citizens who stand up for their constitutional rights. But pro-homosexual personnel already have a warped sense of right and wrong and moral values and will be more likely to follow their gay activist hero into whatever battle he leads them in, including the one against you and me.
Courtesy of Gunny G - Re My Use of the term “God’s Marines” On my Gunny G Blog…
I recently used the term “God‘s Marines” in a post I made on my Gunny G Blog; I also recalled another Marine’s website from years ago using that term… found it!
Here it is below.
January 6, 2011 at 1:15 pm | #4
Here It Is Right Here! http://www.behindthebadge.net/bloodstripes/marines.html
Who are God’s Marines?
Would it surprise you to know that I think angels are God’s Marines? It might if you think of angels as chubby little kids, or beautiful females in flowing silk robes. Where do people get those ideas? Not from the Bible that is for sure. See for yourself, here are a few passages from the Bible describing angels:
He unleashed against them his hot anger, his wrath, indignation and hostility– a band of destroying angels. Psalms 78:49 Sounds a little like a fire team doesn’t it?
This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels. 2 Thessalonians 1:7 God’s Word says that the angels are powerful!
I will send an angel before you and drive out the Canaanites, Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. Exodus 33:2 Only one angel was needed to drive all of these people out of the land.
But David could not go before it to inquire of God, because he was afraid of the sword of the angel of the LORD. 1 Chronicles 21:30 David was no wimp, he was a mighty warrior but he was afraid of the angel.
And the LORD sent an angel, who annihilated all the fighting men and the leaders and officers in the camp of the Assyrian king. So he withdrew to his own land in disgrace. 2 Chronicles 32:21Again it only took one of God’s Marines to annihilate the whole army.
Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, “Are you for us or for our enemies?” “Neither,” he replied, “but as commander of the army of the LORD I have now come.” Joshua 5:13-14 I love this because of the way the angel answered. He was sure of himself, “I have now come,” period.
There are many more examples in the Bible. Of course many people think of God as a gray haired old man too, but they are wrong there too. The angels are His Marines but He is a battle field Commander-in-Chief. The LORD will march out like a mighty man, like a warrior he will stir up his zeal; with a shout he will raise the battle cry and will triumph over his enemies. Isaiah 42:13
Now for the good news, I believe we will also be Marines if we believe in Jesus Christ and accept Him as our Savior. Here is why I think this: I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Out of his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. “He will rule them with an iron scepter.” He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS. Revelation 19:11-16 I believe we are part of that army which rides out with Christ.
Leader Be a Marine In Honor Bloodstripes POW/MIA Weekly Devotional My Testimony
Another Testimony Another Testimony
Please forward this PAN members posting - “X”
This week on ‘The Hal Lindsey Report’
In 1954, the American Legion sponsored a series of network television broadcasts called “Back to God.” On one of those national telecasts, President Dwight D. Eisenhower appeared from the White House. He thanked the American Legion for urging Americans to acknowledge God in their daily lives.
Then the President said, “As a former soldier, I am delighted that our veterans are sponsoring a movement to increase our awareness of God in our daily lives. In battle, they (the veterans) learned a great truth, that there are no atheists in the foxholes.”
Can you imagine this happening today?
The President humbly referred to himself as “a former soldier.” In truth, he was one of only five Americans to earn the rank of five-star general. He was the Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces in Europe in World War II. He and General George Washington are undeniably the most widely admired soldiers in American history.
Fast forward to 2013. An Air Force chaplain at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson near Anchorage, Alaska, wrote a column for the base website. Keep in mind that Lt. Col. Reyes is a chaplain. He titled his column: “No Atheists in Foxholes: Chaplains Gave All in World War II.”
His look back at the contributions and sacrifices of chaplains on the battlefields of World War II quoted one of America’s most beloved soldiers and Presidents, Dwight Eisenhower. Now, that sounds like pretty safe territory for a military chaplain to tread, doesn’t it? An officer whose job is to provide spiritual comfort and guidance to his troops remembering the sacrifices of other officers who provided spiritual comfort and guidance to their troops on the battlefield? And basing it on a quote from one of America’s greatest soldiers and Presidents?
Folks, this ain’t 1954 and that ain’t your Daddy’s Oldsmobile!
Chaplain Reyes was reprimanded for the column and his base commander publicly apologized for not stopping him from discussing religious subjects on the base website. What was the chaplain expected to discuss? Automotive repair tips?
So what has changed since 1954? Lots of things, obviously, but two stand out: 1. These are the last days. 2. Mikey Weinstein.
You probably remember Mr. Weinstein from previous programs. He heads the benignly and misleadingly named Military Religious Freedom Foundation or MRFF. (A more appropriate name would be the Military Freedom FROM Religion Foundation.)
The MRFF protested the chaplain’s column and within five hours it had been removed from Elmendorf’s website.
Apparently no place or venue is safe from Mr. Weinstein’s near-omnipresent gaze. He’s the guy who publicly called a Christian service member sharing his or her faith “spiritual rape.” He has labeled Christians “monsters,” “terrorists,” and “enemies of the Constitution.”
Who cares, you say? He sounds like a nut! Well, I agree, but President Obama doesn’t. In fact, Weinstein has become the Administration’s go-to guy on topics of “religious tolerance” in the U.S. military. Which sounds about par for the course these days — pick someone who has NO religious tolerance to advise the brass on religious tolerance.
Just a few short decades ago, our national leaders actually promoted faith in God and the inclusion of God in the life and fabric of the nation. You see, they faced the specter of an opposing world superpower who sought to eliminate God and vest His authority in the State.
They understood that America’s strength lay in her citizens’ belief in and obeisance to an authority higher than man-made government: the Divine Creator. That freed us from the doubt and indecision and fear that pervades when the conduct of our lives is determined solely by whoever is in power at the moment.
It’s a short and undeniable principle: Man changes. God doesn’t. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist or brain surgeon to figure which of the two will provide a more stable national environment.
On August 21, 1941, President Franklin Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill sat together, with hundreds of sailors and marines, at a church service aboard the HMS Prince of Wales in a harbor on the coast of Newfoundland. They sang the hymns of the church and drank in the strength provided by a mutual spiritual heritage and faith in a common God.
Later, Roosevelt told his son that the service “cemented us” for the dark days of World War II that lay ahead. Churchill wept during “Onward, Christian Soldiers” and later remarked that, “Every word seemed to stir the heart. It was a great hour to live.”
It brings tears to my eyes just writing these words. My friends, that is a world that is long past.
In Britain today, fewer than 10% attend religious services, and a majority of those are Muslim. Now, the number one choice for a baby’s name in the UK is “Mohammed.”
In Luke 18:8, Jesus Himself asked this question: “When the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?” Some studies show that atheism will replace “religion” as the dominant spiritual practice by 2041.
I personally don’t worry too much about atheism because every man and woman has an innate awareness of God. But I do worry about the church. Will we become so desperate to attract people to our pews that we’ll modify and water down the message of the Gospel? Perfect examples of this are the liberal denominations that have become like empty sepulchers. And now it’s happening in many evangelical mega-churches.
At the rate we’re going, and if the President and his party get their way, I’m not certain Jesus will find faith in the military when He returns. Likewise, I doubt He’ll find faith in the ranks of academia or even in the lower echelons of our educational system. It appears that faith is in achingly short supply in the entertainment business already. Government, at least on the federal level, has already declared its independence from faith and conscience. Many believe that business, especially Big Business, turned its back on God long ago and worships only at the altar of the dollar.
So where will Jesus look for faith when He returns? In your heart and mine. That’s why, no matter what happens in the world around us (and it’s happening fast and furiously), stand confidently on the firm foundation of God’s immutable promises to us. “Then after the battle you will still be standing firm.” (Ephesians 6:13, NLT)
Don’t miss this week’s Report on TBN, Daystar, CPM Network, The Word Network, various local stations, www.hallindsey.com or www.hischannel.com. Please check your local listings.
PROGRAMMING NOTE: This is the 400th edition of “The Hal Lindsey Report.” We are available in more than 200 nations and territories around the world and in more than 90% of the homes in America because of God’s grace and your generous support. I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for your faithfulness in standing with me as a “watchman on the wall” during these critical times. I pray daily that God will bless you abundantly for your sacrifice and generosity. Only eternity will reveal the harvest that you have made possible by your prayer and financial support. I thank you and bless you in God’s name.
mail: HLMM, P.O. Box 470470, Tulsa, OK 74147 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
ABCNEWS.COM – A priest mysteriously appeared at the scene of a crash when Katie Lent’s vital signs were failing.
via Did Guardian Angel Save Teen?. [VIDEO LINK; THEY'RE A BIT TERRITORIAL WITH THEIR VIDEOS; AND THE EMBED CODE WOULDN'T WORK "X"]
‘Mystery Priest’ Vanishes After Anointing Crash Victim
A small Missouri town is looking for a man not suspected of a crime but, rather, a miracle.
“I think that this time I’ve actually witnessed a guardian angel at work,” Jeremiah See of the New London Fire Department told ABC News.
An unidentified allegedly drunken driver hit Katie Lentz, of Quincy, Mo., head on Aug. 4 while traveling on Route 19 near Center, Mo., pinning the 19-year-old in the front seat of her convertible. With her vital signs failing fast, she asked rescue crews to pray with her.
That’s when first responders say a man who looked like a Catholic priest seemed to appear out of nowhere, despite a 2-mile perimeter blocking the scene.
“He began to pray and use the anointing oil,” New London Fire Chief Raymond Reed said. “There was a calmness that, to me, seemed to come over the entire scene.”
But that’s not the only seemingly divine detail. Firefighters say their equipment kept failing until the mystery man showed up.
“The words were to remain calm, that our tools would now work,” Reed said. “Instantaneously, at that moment, our neighboring department arrived with fresh extrication tools.”
Lentz survived, but the man vanished before crews could thank him.
The young woman is recovering in the hospital with broken legs and ribs, but some say it could’ve been worse, if not for the mystery man on the highway.
“Whether it was just a priest as an angel, or an actual angel coming down,” Lentz’s friend Travis Wiseman said, “he was an angel to everyone and to Katie.”
EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the first of a seven-part series by veteran journalist Troy Anderson about major evangelists who are turning their attention toward America to help ignite what Billy Graham describes as an end-times “great spiritual awakening.”
By Troy Anderson
“God’s prophet” – famed evangelist Billy Graham – is praying America will experience another “great spiritual awakening.”
International evangelist Reinhard Bonnke – whose ministry records 72 million people responding to the call of salvation in Africa and elsewhere – says God told him the time has come for “a mighty wave of salvation to sweep the USA.”
And Harvest Crusades President Greg Laurie – a Southern California megachurch pastor who became a believer during the legendary Jesus Movement of the late 1960s and 70s – believes America’s “only real hope” is national revival.
At a time when many believe the midnight hour on God’s prophetic clock is fast approaching, major evangelists – Billy Graham, Franklin Graham, Bonnke, Laurie, Chuck Smith, Banning Liebscher and others – are turning their attention toward America in the hope of helping ignite an end-times awakening.
Get the blockbuster book “The Harbinger” bundled with the top-selling companion documentary “Isaiah 9:10 Judgment” for a special discount price at WND’s Superstore!
The movement comes as Graham, the 94-year-old New York Times bestselling author and evangelist who has preached to more people – 2.2 billion – than any Protestant in history and has provided spiritual counsel to every president from Harry S. Truman to George W. Bush, released a letter last summer titled “My Heart Aches for America.”
In the letter, Graham wondered what his late wife, Ruth, would think of a nation in which “self-centered indulgence, pride and a lack of shame over sin are now emblems of the American lifestyle.”
Graham compared America to the ancient city of Nineveh, the lone superpower of its time. When the prophet Jonah finally traveled to Nineveh and proclaimed God’s warning, the people repented and escaped judgment, Graham wrote.
“I think it’s an apt description,” Laurie said. “I think in many ways America is like Nineveh. The wickedness of Nineveh was so great that God effectively said it was recognized up in heaven – ‘the sin of Nineveh has come before me’ – and I believe America is at such a state.”
Laurie said Graham “is a prophetic voice, and to me it’s like Isaiah or Jeremiah standing up and telling our nation what we need to do.”
“We would be wise to heed his warning and his admonitions and turn back to God, because I believe God’s prophet is speaking to us,” Laurie said.
Hope for America
Believing that America, like Nineveh, also has a window of time to repent and return to God, Graham is holding the My Hope America with Billy Graham evangelistic outreach the week of Nov. 7, his 95th birthday. [More information can also be found by calling 1-877-7MY-HOPE, or 1-877-769-4673].
A Billy Graham meeting at the Los Angeles Coliseum in 1963 set an attendance record of 134,254
“My Hope has been used in many countries and hundreds of thousands of people have received Christ as Savior,” Graham said. “I think it’s going to be a tremendous time of evangelism. I think that the Lord is going to use it mightily. I’ve been praying that we might have a spiritual awakening. But I think that becomes possible as individuals surrender their lives fresh and anew to Christ. And that’s the hope that we have.”
In a massive, nationwide event now involving more than 16,000 churches and hundreds of thousands of people, Americans are expected to gather with family, friends, neighbors and co-workers the week of Nov. 7 to watch programs featuring a new and powerful message from Graham, dynamic music and testimonies.
Some will invite guests into their homes or churches to learn about Jesus using television or video, while others will gather at a coffee shop or the park to watch the program on a tablet or smartphone.
“I believe this could be a huge night in American church history as hundreds of thousands of homes are opened and hundreds of thousands of people are sitting and watching and hearing the gospel,” said Franklin Graham, Graham’s son and president and chief executive officer of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. “It just might be one of the largest evangelistic efforts in the history of our nation.”
The My Hope America with Billy Graham event is part of a larger effort by major evangelists and ministries who are planning numerous evangelistic crusades, conferences and other events this year and next.
The movement began in February when Bonnke declared to 5,000 people in attendance at the two-day Gospel Fest in Vero Beach, Fla. that, “All America shall be saved!” Bonnke is best known for his crusades in Africa and for his cry, “All Africa shall be saved!”
On June 16, several thousand “Jesus People” gathered at the Calvary Chapel Summer Crusade with Franklin Graham and Calvary Chapel Pastor Chuck Smith in Costa Mesa, Calif. Then, on July 22-24, about 6,000 youth gathered for the Jesus Culture Conference in Universal City, Calif. where Bonnke spoke.
Bonnke, known for his Great Gospel Crusades in Africa in which as many as 1.6 million people attend, said God told him last year it was time to “cast the Gospel net across America.”
Bonnke will speak next Sept. 27-28 at the Good News Orlando crusade at the Amway Center in Orlando, Fla.
He said he wants to fill the Orlando arena and then “go from city to city, from state to state and from coast to coast.”
“America will be saved!”
Bonnke said Americans “need to hear the Gospel.” When he preached in Germany, he said, skeptics told him Germans had rejected the Gospel.
“I preached in a stadium and when I made the altar call, the power of God was so wonderfully present that I saw with my own eyes people jumping over the benches to come forward,” Bonnke said. “They couldn’t come forward for the prayer of salvation fast enough, and then I realized one thing: Germany has not rejected the Gospel. I think the new generation has never really heard the Gospel.
“Every generation has a right to hear the Gospel, the ABC’s of the Gospel – the Gospel of salvation. And I believe the younger generation in America also has the right to hear the glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ and make up its own mind.”
Call to repentance
The crusades and other events come as a number of spiritual and political leaders have made calls for repentance in recent years, arguing the nation is in a downward spiral of economic decline, corruption, immorality, secular humanism and attacks on religious liberty.
WND.com founder and Chief Executive Officer Joseph Farah is calling for a nationwide day of prayer, repentance and fasting on Sept. 11 – the 9/11: National Day of Prayer and Repentance – in response to the “ongoing downfall of our nation.” The plan is embraced by thousands around the country, including Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., Chuck Norris, Laurie and Rabbi Jonathan Cahn.
Rabbi Jonathan Cahn
Cahn, author of the New York Times bestselling book “The Harbinger: The Ancient Mystery that holds the Secret of America’s Future,” said there is a strong awareness among believers and Christian leaders that America is in “great spiritual danger.”
“The speed of its departure from God has accelerated,” said Cahn, the senior rabbi at the nation’s largest messianic congregation, the Beth Israel Worship Center in Wayne, N.J., and a descendant of Aaron, the brother of the biblical prophet Moses. “Hardly a day passes without another step in the nation’s moral and spiritual descent. To anyone who is spiritually sensitive or, for that matter, who reads the Bible, the picture is clear.
“We stand at a tipping point,” he said. “I believe that’s why the Lord caused ‘The Harbinger’ to be released at this exact point in time. It’s a warning, the sounding of the trumpet, the call to return. The only hope we have is that of a turning of course, repentance, revival, a return to God.”
In addition to the annual Harvest Crusade Aug. 23-25 at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, Calif., Laurie will preach Sept. 28-29 at Harvest America at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.
Harvest Crusades, in its 24th year of leading national and international Christian revivals, selected Philadelphia because of its history as the birthplace of the nation.
Many believe the U.S. is at a new historic crossroads and hope that events such as this can help bring spiritual revival across the land. The event will be held at 7 p.m. Eastern Time on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 28 and 29. Thousands of other locations around the country will participate via satellite and live-streaming.
“I think (Graham) is the reason we are seeing this emphasis on the gospel and bringing it to America,” said Laurie, who has preached to more than 4.7 million people and has seen nearly 400,000 make a faith decision since beginning Harvest Crusades in 1990. “Those of us who are Christians recognize that the only real hope for our country is for us to have a spiritual awakening.”
Meanwhile, hundreds of ministers and others in all 50 states are continuing to gather in preparation meetings for My Home America with Billy Graham. At the meetings, pastors and lay church leaders are learning how to maximize the nationwide evangelistic outreach in their own congregations. Meetings are still taking place across the country through the summer. In addition to the meetings, thousands of individuals have registered for the project and participated in the free online training.