VOL. 5 NO. 9
“CONTENDING FOR THE FAITH WHICH WAS ONCE DELIVERED UNTO THE SAINTS.” JUDE 3
Adventists to Partner with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration FDA and Washington Adventist Hospital to Collaborate by Tierney Plumb, Staff Reporter Washington Business Journal Friday, January 23, 2009
Prime Minister Brown Uses Vatican Meeting to Invite Pope Benedict to Britain By Richard Owen, The Times (UK) February 19, 2009 Gordon Brown assured Pope Benedict XVI of a "warm welcome" when he invited him to Britain today. After an audience with the Pope lasting more than 35 minutes - far longer than scheduled - Mr. Brown said he had told the pontiff “that many millions of people would not only welcome his visit but it would be a great moment for our whole country.” —continued on page 3
Pope Calls on the Churches to Unite Pope: Christian Unity Week Calls to Renewal VATICAN CITY, JAN. 21, 2009 (Zenit.org).Christians should respond to Christ's urgent appeal for unity in his Church, and this is a good week to make that response more generous, says Benedict XVI.
The Food and Drug Administration and Washington Adventist Hospital, which is planning to move into the agency’s neck of the woods in a few years, announced an initiative to collaborate on medical and scientific issues. The FDA, which employs 500 medical officers, will get access to the Montgomery County hospital’s medical tech- The U.S. Food and Drug Adnologies and environments in clinical, emergency room and ministration [FDA] is an direct patient service areas. agency of the United States Department of Health and Hu“The development of a modern hospital facility and affili- man Services which regulates ated medical services on Washington Adventist Hospital’s drugs, vaccines, biological property is a perfect, once-in-a-lifetime complement to the medical products, foods, mediresearch and medical programs at our FDA campus,” said cal devices, radiation-emitting John Dyer, deputy commissioner for operations and chief devices, veterinary products, operating officer for the —continued on page 2 and cosmetics.
Baptists, Adventists— Faith Family Partners Baptists, Adventists Meet to Underscore Common Christian Values by Christian B. Schäffler March, 13, 2009 Adventist Press Service (APD) Delegates from the Baptist World Alliance (BWA) met with Seventh-day Adventist world church President Jan Paulsen March 11 to affirm their denominations' common values and recommit to their shared goals of religious freedom. —continued on page 3
Dulcie Callam (wife) with Neville Callam, general secretary of the Baptist World Alliance, John Graz, director of the public affairs and religious liberty department for the Adventist church, and Fausto Vasconcelos, director of evangelism and education for the Baptist World Alliance.
The Pope affirmed this today by dedicating his reflection at the weekly general audience to the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, under way through Sunday. —continued on page 3
Vice-president Biden Parades His Catholicism During Official White House Hearings
A History Of Sunday
For the first time in U.S. history has a Vice President presided over a White House meeting wearing ashes on his forehead. The only other Roman Catholic to hold a higher office was John F. Kennedy. As far as the historical records show, Kennedy was never photographed during any public event, much less while acting in office, with ashes on his forehead.
What Makes Sundays So Special? Charles Osgood Takes An In-Depth Look Feb. 1, 2009, CBS News Sunday Morning Whether you're planning your Sunday brunch, taking a Sunday drive, or watching Sunday Morning, chances are you have your own Sunday ritual. It's the first day of the week, and for many, it's their favorite day. "I don't think Sunday will ever be like every other day of the week. It's a special day. And it will remain a special day," says author Stephen Miller. For Miller, the best thing about Sunday is that it is a day of rest. "That it's a day when you don't have to do things, when you can just lie around, see people if you want, or not see people." And seeing people is a Sunday activity that Americans enjoy. —continued on page 4
On Wednesday, February 25, 2009, US Vice President Joe Biden attended mass on Ash Wednesday. His forehead had a smear of ash, to indicate participation in Ash Wednesday. Later he attended the announcement of Gary Locke as the nominee for Secretary of Commerce with ashes on his forehead. Vice President Biden was not shy about parading His Roman Catholicism in front of the media for all the world to see. It is interesting, however, that none of the hundreds of other Roman Catholic members of the US Congress showed up —continued on page 3
page 2 the eternal gospel herald — volume 5, no. 9
Fallen Man and Fallen Angels in the Same Confederacy —by Pastor Raphael Perez
Read the headlines in this issue of The Eternal Gospel Herald. Consider the solemn events that are transpiring before our very eyes. (1) The pope has summoned all the churches to unite. (2) President Obama has declared that God has called him. (3) The President is also appointing very prominent Roman Catholics and Pentecostals/ Spiritualists to high posts in the Federal Government. (4) Adventists are uniting with the Baptists calling their alliance a “faith family.” (5) At the same time, Adventists are also uniting with the Federal Government/FDA. Dear readers, I don’t know what you would call all this spiritual and political amalgamation—Roman Catholics, Pentecostals, Baptists/Evangelicals, Adventists, and the Federal Government—but we should remember how the Lord sees all this. “Through apostasy, fallen men and fallen angels are in the same confederacy, leagued to work against good. They are united in a desperate companionship. Through his evil angels, Satan contrives to form an alliance with professedly pious men, and thus he leavens the church of God...Thus Satan works today through his evil angels. He confederates with men who claim to be in the faith; and those who are trying to carry forward the work of God.” Bible Commentary Vol. 4, p. 1142. “Let the watchmen on the walls of Zion not join with those who are making of none effect the truth as it is in Christ. Let them not join the confederacy of infidelity, popery, and Protestantism in exalting tradition above Scripture, reason above revelation, and human talent above the divine influence and the vital power of godliness.” Bible Commentary Vol. 4, pp. 1141, 1142. This confederacy is the counterfeit of the true unity that will exist among God’s people who will be abiding in Him. (See article “An Abiding People” on page 7). “Union is strength; division is weakness. When those who believe present truth are united, they exert a telling influence. Satan well understands this. Never was he more determined than now to make of none effect the truth of God by causing bitterness and dissension among the Lord's people. The world is against us, the popular churches are against us, the laws of the land will soon be against us. If there was ever a time when the people of God should press together, it is now. God has committed to us the special truths for this time to make known to the world. The last message of mercy is now going forth. We are dealing with men and women who are judgment bound.” Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 236. In view of all of this, we should be more determined than ever before to make known the special truths for this time by every means available—whether through newspapers, radio, billboards, personal witnessing, literature, or any other method to reach souls for the kingdom. Let us unite and support each other in this most important work.
THE ETERNAL GOSPEL HERALD PO Box 15138 West Palm Beach, FL 33416 1-800-769-2150 firstname.lastname@example.org Subscription: FREE If you wish to receive a free subscription of this publication, please contact our office at: PO Box 15138, West Palm Beach, FL 33416 | 1-800-769-2150 email: email@example.com Online Edition: www.eternalgospelherald.com Editor Raphael Perez Assistant Editor Andy Roman Copy Editor Patricia Rocco
Co-Editor Ron Spear Contributors Miriam Ponce Norma Perez Peter Prestol
The Eternal Gospel Herald is published from West Palm Beach, Florida, USA, by the Eternal Gospel Church, a ministry that was founded in 1992 by Seventhday Adventist believers to bring true, genuine, world-wide revival and reformation by proclaiming the Third Angel’s Message. The Eternal Gospel Herald is sent to you free of charge, with much love, work, and sacrifice. Every effort is made to insure the accuracy of the information contained herein. This publication is printed to communicate the issues and subjects pertaining solely to the development and fulfillment of the third angel’s message and the advance of Christ’s character in the lives of God’s faithful people. We hope and pray that you will not only enjoy it but that it will be informative and spiritually enlightening to all of you. It is only by the grace of God and the support of each of you that we are able to participate in publishing, radio, newspapers, billboards, and foreign missions.
—continued from page 1 “Adventist Unite with the FDA” FDA, in a statement. Rockville-based Adventist HealthCare System, which runs the 292-bed hospital in Takoma Park, is planning to move the hospital to an improved and more accessible 48-acre campus off Plum Orchard Drive near Cherry Hill Road and Route 29. The two groups will begin working together now and expect collaboration to grow after the new hospital opens, which officials say could happen by 2013. Current opportunities include: training and exchange of medical professionals and staff by the two organizations; clinical research collaboration; sharing facilities and equipment for increased cost efficiencies for scientific research; and identifying and eliminating health disparities. Washington Adventist Hospital got unanimous approval of its site plan last month from Montgomery County and will send a Letter of Intent to the state in early February. A more comprehensive Certificate of Need, asking for permission to relocate to the White Oak/Calverton area of Montgomery County, will be filed with the state in April.
Dear Eternal Gospel Herald, Please send me your free subscription to the Eternal Gospel Herald. I read your magazine and I appreciate keeping up with our church. I want to be ready when Jesus comes. You are a great help. I hope to be alive when Jesus comes; although I’m up in age. Please keep me informed of what is happening. May God bless you in your work. Vera Rincon, California. Dear Pastor Perez, My wife and I were richly blessed by your timely “present truth” messages this weekend in New York. We would like to receive your periodical and all other printed material for our literature ministry here in upstate New York. We will continue to pray for you that God’s richest blessings will always attend you as you remain His faithful steward and “watchman on the walls of Zion.” We also enlist your prayers for us to remain true and faithful. Your brother and sister in Christ, Farisha and Sam Walters, New York. Dear Brethren, My name is __________ and I am in jail awaiting my sentence. I got your address from one of my friends in here. I am in a Bible study group and I would like to learn more about God’s word. Can you please send me your Bible studies? Sincerely, _________, Indiana. Greetings, I am writing to ask that you send me your free book. I received a flyer from a fellow convict in regards to some very interesting information about the Sunday Laws. I thank you greatly for your time and help. Respectfully, ___________, Illinois. Dear Sir, I have just read your article in the Eternal Gospel Herald, Vol. 5 No. 7 “The Sunday-Sabbath Issue.” I have been a Seventh-day Adventist all my life and have never felt the urgency that our people have to let others know what is about to happen in America. The use of force to have us worship on the 1st day instead of the true Sabbath is something I have heard of before but not in the same way as given in your Gospel Herald. I wish to find out how I can be on your mailing list. From what I have read we have a mission not just as a church but as individuals. We know that Christ is coming and He will surely return when we have finished His commission. God bless your work. Your brother in Christ, James M., New York. Dear Pastor Raphael Perez, Thank you so much for your ministry and the straight truth you put forth to expose the errors amongst our people. Also for presenting the Three Angels’ Messages to the “scattered flock” who are just waiting for God’s gems of truth. Yours is the only ministry I know of to use the secular newspapers and billboards to get the word out to the masses, and we support you in our prayers. Your ministry has sparked the idea of our own personal outreach at home by placing classified ads in major newspapers for “Free DVD’s on Bible Prophecy” and we have just recently sent out our 209th package to those who, by the Holy Spirit’s prompting, are seeking for truth. This all since we started in July 2008. We have placed our ad, usually for free or little charge, in the cities and newspapers of Las Vegas, Minneapolis, Kansas City, Billings, Rapid City, Scottsbluff, Sheridan, Lincoln, Wichita, Bismarck and Cheyenne. I wish I could handle more cities but with just my husband and parents and I we are kept busy! Praise God! Thank you to each one there at the Eternal Gospel for dedicating your time. In Christ’s Service, Kimberly & Darin Blood, Nebraska.
the eternal gospel herald — volume 5, no. 9 page 3 —continued from page 1 “Vice President Joe Biden”
—continued from page 1 “Pope Asks Churches to Unite”
with ashes on their foreheads as a public witness of faith.
The Holy Father recalled that Christ prayed for the unity of his disciples no less than four times in the Upper Room.
This raises some serious questions. Where was the Reverend Barry W. Lynn? He is the Executive Director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State. Why hasn’t he said anything? Usually he protests “lesser crimes” of religious displays by government. Where was the ACLU? They pride themselves with protesting any blatant expressions of religion by the State or Federal Government. Also, should public officials preside over political meetings wearing “sacred ashes?” Are we slowly becoming a theocracy? Perhaps in his next televised appearance Vice President Biden might perform mass from the Oval Office. “Protestantism shall give the hand of fellowship to the Roman power. Then there will be a law against the Sabbath of God’s Creation, and then it is that God will do His ‘strange work’ in the earth.” Bible Commentary, Vol. 7, p. 910. In any event, prophecy foretells that additional displays of religion by our government will become more and more frequent until finally our legislators will undo the US Constitution. “Political corruption is destroying love of justice and regard for truth, and even in free America rulers and legislators, in order to secure public favor, will yield to the popular demand for a law enforcing Sunday observance.” Last Day Events, p. 129. “Our country shall repudiate every principle of its Constitution as a Protestant and Republican government and shall make provision for the propagation of papal falsehoods and delusions, then we may know that the time has come for the marvelous working of Satan and that the end is near.” Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 451. —The Editors
—continued from page 1 “Baptists/Adventists Meet” The meeting, which included other church leaders, took place at Adventist world church headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland/USA. "[Adventists and Baptists] share a Christ-centric faith and many of the same values," said John Graz, director of public affairs and religious liberty for the Adventist church. "We also share a passion for religious freedom, and in many countries around the world we cooperate closely to promote and defend this freedom." The Jamaican pastor and theologian Neville Callam (58), general secretary of the Baptist World Alliance since 2007, echoed the common need to work for religious liberty. "Part of the genetic makeup of the Baptist community is [the affirmation] of human dignity," Callam said. He also expressed interest in pursuing "mutual sharing and collaboration in common causes" in the future. The BWA general secretary serves as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Alliance. For 15 years, Callam served as a member of the Standing and Plenary Commissions of the Faith and Order Movement of the World Council of Churches (WCC) and chaired a number of its study groups.
"This is a unity that can only grow in the example of the surrender of the Son to the Father, that is, going out of oneself and uniting oneself to Christ," he said. "Twice, moreover, in this prayer, Jesus adds as the objective of this union: that the world may believe. Full unity is connected, therefore with the life and the very mission of the Church in the world." The Pontiff said that working toward this unity is "our responsibility: that the gift of unity be visible for the world, in virtue of which our faith is made credible. For this, it is important that each Christian community become aware of the urgency of working in every way possible to reach this grand objective. "Only going out of ourselves and toward Christ, only in this relationship with him can we come to be truly united among ourselves. This is the invitation that, with the present week [of prayer], is directed to believers in Christ of every Church and ecclesial community; to him, dear brothers and sisters, we should respond with generosity." Benedict XVI dedicated part of his reflection to a consideration of the theme chosen for this year's week of prayer: "That They May Become One in Your Hand" (Ezekiel 37:17). "In the passage of the book of the prophet Ezekiel from which the theme has been taken," the Pope explained, "the Lord orders the prophet to take two sticks, one as a symbol of Judah and his tribes and the other as a symbol of Joseph and of the whole house of Israel united to him, and he asks him to 'join' the two such that they form 'just one stick' in his hand." He continued: "The parable of unity is transparent. To the 'sons of the people' who ask explanation, Ezekiel, enlightened from on high, will say that the Lord himself takes the two sticks and joins them, such that the two kingdoms with their respective tribes, divided among themselves, become 'one in your hand.' The hand of the prophet, which joins the two shoots, is considered as the hand of God himself that gathers and unites his people and finally, the whole of humanity. […] "In the second part of the biblical reading, the meaning and the conditions for the unity of the various tribes in just one kingdom are considered in depth. In the dispersion among the Gentiles, the Israelites had learned erroneous cults, had assimilated mistaken concepts of life, had taken on customs foreign to divine law. Now the Lord declares that they will no longer be contaminated with idols from the pagan peoples, with their abominations, with all of their iniquities. He reclaims the need to liberate them from sin, to purify their heart." The Holy Father said that Ezekiel's vision is "particularly eloquent for the whole ecumenical movement because it makes clear the unavoidable demand of an authentic interior renewal in every component of the People of God, which only the Lord can bring about." He contended that "we too should be open to this renewal, because we too, dispersed among the peoples of the world, have learned customs very far from the Word of God." Citing the decree from the Second Vatican Council Unitatis Redintegratio, the Pontiff affirmed that there "can be no ecumenism worthy of the name without a change of heart."
The Baptist delegation also included Fausto Vasconcelos, director of evangelism and education for the Baptist World Alliance.
"The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity," he said, "becomes for all of us, in this way, a stimulant toward a sincere conversion and an ever more docile listening to the Word of God, toward an even deeper faith."
Adventist world church President Jan Paulsen (74) also commended the group on past collaborations in the area of religious liberty.
—continued from page 1 “British Prime Minister and the Pope”
"The strength of affirming and protecting religious freedom depends on participation of many. [Let us] explore opportunities to work together in the name of Christ and to strengthen our witness for him," Paulsen said.
Mr. Brown was received in private audience by Pope Benedict, who impressed upon him that the flow of aid to the developing world must be kept up. Mr. Brown said he had agreed with the Pope that when it came to the world's poor "we cannot pass by on the other side" - a reference to the parable of the Good Samaritan.
Paulsen added that the partnership has provided "a fertile spiritual soil to our faith family."
It is thought the two discussed the forthcoming appointment of a new Archbishop of Westminster to replace Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor, head of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, who has already exceeded the mandatory retirement age of 75.
page 4 the eternal gospel herald — volume 5, no. 9 —continued from page 1 “A History of Sunday” According to a recent survey by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 40 percent of us socialize on Sundays, but twice as many - eight out of ten - sit back and watch TV, an average of four hours. And then there's church: one in four attends religious services. And about that same number goes shopping. But when Sunday Morning first went on the air in 1979, in many parts of the country it was impossible to shop on Sundays: Stores were required to be closed, says Stephen Miller, who's written a book on the subject: "The Peculiar Life of Sundays" (Harvard University Press). Americans once had a very narrow choice of permissible Sunday activities: "There were so many arguments in the United States, especially in the 19th century," Miller said. "Sunday legislation was the second-most debated subject after slavery, because there were different opinions about what you could or couldn't do on Sunday."
Which makes sense, says Harline, because football would not have been accepted on Sundays had it not first assumed a religious significance starting in the late 19th century. "Most Americans considered themselves Christians. And so they had to find a way to reconcile that. And the way they did that was, you know, this is a different day. Sunday is a special day. Most civilizations celebrate their holiest days with sports. Why wouldn't that be true in America as well?" Harline explains. And so Sunday became a day for games and celebrations. But not for everyone. There was nothing festive about the song "Gloomy Sunday," recorded by Billie Holiday in 1941. Stephen Miller says it reflects a larger theme in popular music: Sunday as a dark day:
"Gloomy is Sunday, With shadows I spend it all. My heart and I Have decided to end it all. Soon there'll be canChristians Worshipping at an Easter Sunrise Service. dles, And prayers that are said, I know, But let them not weep, Let them know that I'm glad to go. Death is no dream For in death I'm caressing you. Those opinions began with the Puritans, who settled in New England in With the last breath of my soul I'll be blessing you." the 1630s. They called it "Strict Sunday Observance." Sunday was a day "In fact, it was banned by the BBC during the war because it was too for church-going, and "Blue Laws" made almost everything else illegal. depressing," Miller says. "There were Connecticut blue laws in the 18th century, which said that "You're talking about being alone on a Saturday night, that's sad, you you could not kiss your baby. You could not tell a joke. There was absoknow?" says music journalist Fred Goodman. "Being alone on a Sunday lutely no frivolity on Sunday. And you could not play an instrument," morning, that's tragic." Miller says. Goodman says some songs about Sunday sadness focus on failed expecChurch organs and hymns aside, music was taboo on Sundays. "There tations for our day off. was a French soldier stationed in Boston, and during the Revolutionary War he started playing the flute. He was arrested. No flute-playing on "One of the great examples is Kris Kristofferson's song, 'Sunday Mornthe Sabbath!" Miller laughed. ing Coming Down.' It's about a guy who's down on his luck, you know, and really has nothing. And he's talking about Sunday morning. What Some blue laws still exist today, mostly to regulate alcohol sales. But do most people do on Sunday morning? You know, they're with their Miller says Americans have come a long way from the age of "strict obfamily, they're going to church, whatever. This guy's, like, you know, servance." sleepin' off a drunk on the sidewalk. You know, he's got nothing." "Gradually, in the 20th century, all the things that we associate with Therapists have been listening to the real-life SunSunday now started. So, there's the Sunday drive, day blues for years. In fact, Sunday actually has a the Sunday dinner, Sunday sports. And the Sunpsychiatric disorder named after it. day paper," Miller says. "The Sunday paper with the comics and the crosswords became a major "There's a famous diagnosis in the early 20th cenAmerican phenomenon." tury, [when] the discipline and practice of psychology emerged: Sunday neurosis," historian Harline "We continue to relax in front of the Sunday explains. "The person who couldn't bear the coming newspaper. One hundred and fifteen million peoof Sunday, because it threw them out of their rouple in America still read a Sunday newspaper. In tine. Sunday is timeless and it's open. There isn't that fact, readership was up last year from the year schedule that you have the rest of the week. And before," says Janice Kaplan, the editor of Parade some people can't bear that." Magazine. Not writer Judith Shulevitz. In her upcoming book For almost 70 years, it's been a Sunday institu"The Sabbath World," she argues just the opposite: tion, now appearing in more than 450 Sunday She wants to keep Sundays timeless. In a world of newspapers across the country, with a parade of 24/7 commerce, she's pushing for a return to laws covers to show for it. Parade, says Kaplan, would that would shut down businesses one day a week. not be Parade on any other day of the week. "If everybody has to stop working, then they have "The Sunday paper is so invested with tradition. to, sort of, pay attention to their family, to themIt's got all of those different sections in it. Everyselves, to their community," she argues. body in the family has a section they want to read. And everybody pulls the one that means some"So in this campaign, where do you even start?" thing to them. And then maybe they pass it Charles Osgood asks. around the Sunday table," Kaplan says. "I don't pretend to have the answer in terms of legisOne favorite section is Sunday Sports - two words Anciently, Sunday was revered by the lation. I just start by trying to point out the benefits that for millions of Americans have become syn- pagans since they worshipped the sun. and to just say 'Let's remember the Sabbath. Let's onymous with each other. Sports, like the newsremember what it did for us in the past. And let's papers that cover them, are now a firmly established Sunday tradition. think about what it could do for us in the future,'" Shulevitz explains. "It was no small thing for Super Bowl to become an adjective for Sunday," says historian Craig Harline, who has written about how professional football became a weekly ritual in America, in "Sunday: A History of the First Day from Babylonia to the Super Bowl" (Random House). "Now you look at the Super Bowl, and it's this odd combination of religion, strip tease show, and, you know, who knows what else. But certainly it's bigger than football. It's about an American civil religion."
"It's fast becoming like other days, because of the commercialization of Sunday," says Miller. "We're losing a day of rest. We're sort of 'on' all the time now. What effect does this have on our psyche? So I think we are losing something." Which brings us back to the Puritans of the 1630s: their measures may now seem extreme, but what if they were actually on to something?
the eternal gospel herald — volume 5, no. 9
Will the Recession Doom the Last Sunday Blue Laws? By Paige Bowers Time Magazine Sunday, Feb. 22, 2009 A handful of state legislatures have declared it's closing time for Sunday alcohol sales restrictions, saying an extra day of sales could give their foundering budgets a much-needed shot of revenue. Those states — Georgia, Connecticut, Texas, Alabama and Minnesota — enjoy overwhelming voter support for an extra day of sales, but face opposition from members of the Christian right, who say that selling on Sunday undermines safety and tears apart families. "During times of economic stress, our families are under enough pressure," says Jim Beck, the president of the Georgia Christian Coalition. "I don't think we need to add even more pressure to those families by passing this law." But proponents of Sunday sales argue that state budgets are under plenty of pressure too and that by allowing people to buy beer, wine or liquor on Sunday at grocery or package stores, states could reap millions of dollars in tax revenue. Besides, as President Roosevelt learned in the 1930s when he successfully repealed Prohibition, drinks have a way of keeping hopes high when things look bleak. In Johnathan Alter's The Defining Moment: FDR's Hundred Days and the Triumph of Hope, the President recognized that legally-procured cocktails were the way to keep spirits high when Americans were trying to get used to putting their trust into the nation's crumbling banking system again. And, it could be argued, the sales also helped stimulate the economy in the middle of the Great Depression. (See TIME's "25 People to Blame for the Financial Crisis")
"Slowly and systematically we've seen these laws lifted in past the century, even more so when there has been an economic downturn," Laband says. "States realize that consumers will migrate to a place where they can buy what they want. And whatever their reasons are for not wanting to sell on Sunday, these states realize they're paying a price for it in foregone tax revenues. So once the economy goes bad, then the cost of their policies are apparent to them." Beck argues that when you're facing a budget shortfall in the billions, the extra revenue from an added day of alcohol sales is just a drop in the bucket. His opponents, however, insist it is significant. "At least it's a drop," says Georgia Senator Seth Harp, who introduced a bill proposing local referendums on Sunday sales. "Maybe it's even a cup full. But right now, I'd like to have a couple of cups full than nothing at all." (See what businesses are doing well despite the recession.) Three states — Georgia, Connecticut and Indiana — ban the sale of beer, wine and spirits, while 15 ban only liquor sales. Connecticut is considering repealing its ban because it has been losing revenue to New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, three neighboring states that repealed Sunday sales bans in 2003. Texas is also reconsidering Sunday sales bans of liquor, with three bills in the state's Senate, two of them specific to sales along the Texas-Mexico border. "States are seeing Sunday sales as a positive way to raise revenue without raising taxes or cutting valuable programs," says Ben Jenkins, spokesman for the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States. "That, along with consumer demand, is driving this change." And though religious groups have sounded off about how Sunday sales are harmful to families, legislators such as Harp are reaching out to them by adding enforcement provisions designed to crack down on store owners who sell to minors. In a state like Georgia, where more than two-thirds of residents say they'd like to be able to buy a six pack on the sabbath, Harp's efforts may just win his bill votes, even though Governor Sonny Perdue, a teetotaler, said he'd veto any bill that came across his desk.
"[Sunday sales legislation] always comes bubbling up when the economy goes south," says David Laband, an Auburn University economics professor who authored Blue Laws: The History, Economics, and Politics of Sunday-Closing Laws. Blue laws, which restrict shopping of any kind on Sunday, date back to the colonial era, Laband says. However, those laws gradually died off as economic forces made some states realize that they could stand to gain by having stores open on Sunday. For example, the entry of women into the workforce in World War II made weekend shopping a necessity. (See pictures of Denver, Beer Country.)
But Perdue won't be in office forever and anti-Sunday sales advocates across the nation may realize the tide is turning against them too. "People have got a lot of activities that occupy their time, attention and affection on Sunday and shopping is one of them," Laband says. "Churches have had to come to grips with that; they haven't drawn a line in the sand and said 'You have to go to church.' So the trend is clear that states will do away with some of these alcohol prohibitions. It will happen. It's just a matter of when."
Once again, No Sunday Alcohol Sales
did not know what he would do.
By Robert Tribble Feb. 28, 2009 Fayette Daily News (Fayetteville, GA) It is not an election year in our state so State Senator Seth Harp of Midland has once again introduced legislation that if passed will allow the sale of alcohol on Sundays in convenience and grocery stores. With approval of local voters bars and restaurants can already serve beer, wine and liquor on Sundays. House Bill 104 would permit local voters to approve the sale of packaged alcohol on Sundays. The bill is presently in the House Committee on Regulated Industries whatever that is. In the past Gov. Sonny Perdue and key members of the General Assembly have blocked Harp’s former efforts to allow Sunday alcohol sales. For those of us who are against this legislation let’s hope our governor and others will do the same thing this year. It has been reported that Harp began to push for the bill three years ago when he was standing in line in a grocery store in Columbus when a couple, apparently from the North, came to the checkout counter with some soft drinks, beer and wine. The clerk told the couple they could not purchase alcohol on Sunday. They were reportedly purchasing the alcohol to celebrate the engagement of their son who was stationed at Fort Benning. Harp says he has a lot more support for his bill this time around. He said he has not spoken with Gov. Perdue about the bill this year and
He added that money was the source of all evil so there may be a way of getting the bill passed this year. Two years ago when the bill surfaced it drew strong opposition from the Georgia Christian Alliance. Sadie Fields, the lobbyist for Christian conservatives at the capital, led a strong fight against Sunday sales saying then there were six days a week to purchase alcohol and that was enough. “Sunday is the Sabbath, a day of rest, a day we honor God,” she said two years ago. Also two years ago longtime pastor and associational missionary Aaron McCollough was involved in an effort to defeat the legislation saying that nothing good could come out of Sunday sales of beer and wine. “I don’t think it serves the interest of what Sunday is suppose to be,” he said then. “If people want to drink they have plenty of time to get their drinking in before Sunday. “It takes away from the reverence of the day,” he concluded. Two years ago the Georgia Alcohol Dealers Association went on record as being opposed to the bill. At that time they added that if the bill gained momentum though, the association would want the law to include hard liquor sales on Sunday as well. Grocery and convenience stores are not allowed to sell hard liquor in the state. Under the present law folks in our state know they cannot purchase alcohol on Sundays so those who wish to drink on the Sabbath purchase what they need on Saturday or any other day in the week.
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Obama: “I Heard God Call Me” February 5, 2009—President Obama spoke at the 2009 National Prayer Breakfast, an annual event held in Washington D.C. In his address he told an audience of over 3,500 guests, including members of Congress, the media, and invitees from over 100 countries that he had heard God call him while he was walking the streets of Chicago. Following are part of the remarks of President Obama at the National Prayer Breakfast on Thursday, as provided by the White House. “I didn’t become a Christian until many years later, when I moved to the South Side of Chicago after college. It happened not because of indoctrination or a sudden revelation, but because I spent month after month working with church folks who simply wanted to help neighbors who were down on their luck – no matter what they looked like, or where they came from, or who they prayed to. It was on those streets, in those neighborhoods, that I first heard God’s spirit beckon me. It was there that I felt called to a higher purpose – His purpose." President Obama’s Remarks
President Barack Obama watches as Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, a Roman Catholic, speaks in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Monday, March 2, 2009, after he nominated her to be on his cabinet as Health and Human Services Secretary. (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds) President Obama's nomination of Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius to head the US Department of Health and Human Services is illuminating a sharp divide in the Catholic world over the question of church versus politics. Secretary Kathleen Sebelius agrees with her church that abortion is wrong and says she will work to help reduce abortion. But at the same time she has supported abortion rights. Her own bishop, Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City, has asked her not to present herself for Communion. She’s been under attack by her church for her disagreements over public policy. In her speech she stated “We
are committed to reducing the number of abortions but not by doing anything to make it harder for women to get them. Join us in creating better adoption services, sex education, and access to contraception, neonatal care, and daycare.” We know from prophecy that the churches will soon pressure our elected officials to introduce Sunday as part of the “good reforms” needed in this nation. “The leaders of the Sunday movement may advocate reforms which the people need, principles which are in harmony with the Bible; yet while there is with these a requirement which is contrary to God's law, His servants cannot unite with them. Nothing can justify them in setting aside the commandments of God for the precepts of men.” Great Controversy, pp. 587, 588.
Joshua Dubois, a Pentecostal minister, was enrolled at Georgetown Jesuit University when he was hired by Obama’s Presidential campaign. Joshua Dubois grew up in Nashville and was the son of a minister at the African Methodist Episcopal church. He will lead a council of 25 influential religious and nonprofit leaders as director of religious affairs for President Obama. Joshua DuBois has officially been appointed to lead President Obama's Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. His selection was a gamble by the Obama administration to show that religion will not remain a secondary issue for the new administration. Dubois was responsible for selecting Evangelical pastor Rick Warren from Saddleback Church in California to deliver the invocation during Obama’s inauguration. Dubois’ new cabinet position will be responsible for giving billions of federal dollars to the churches. The money is supposed to be used by the churches for charity work. Even though that may be the goal—what is the outcome? Faithbased charity is supposed to refer only to church sponsored community outreach activities. But since the churches are the ones receiving the funding, no one really knows how much actually is applied towards charity, who gets the funds, and what happens to them. The government, on the other hand, will threaten its citizens with prison if they don't pay their taxes, but then they turn around and give our tax money to churches. Taxation by the government for the church? So much for freedom of religion! So much for separation of church and state! So much for the late Constitution! When the government funds a church, it gives it a competitive advantage
over other churches who don’t receive any funding. The argument can be made that the government establishes religion when it begins to fund it. Now we are seeing wealth and power being given to a small group of religious leaders in America. President Obama could have also chosen to shut down this program of funding churches with tax dollars just as he promised to stop the torture of suspected terrorists at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp. Instead, despite being a constitutional attorney, he chose to continue this program started by President Bush.
the eternal gospel herald — volume 5, no. 9
Our first and highest duty is to know that we are abiding in Christ.” This Day with God, p. 140. “Abide in Me, I am the vine, ye are the branches…” John 15:4, 5. “The Connection of the branch with the vine, He said, represents the relation you are to sustain to Me.” Desire of Ages, p. 675. “The Branches are not tied to the vine by any….artificial fastening. They are united to the vine and have become part of it.” Upward Look, p. 182. “The life of the vine becomes the life of the branch.” Desire of Ages, p. 675. “Fiber by fiber, vein by vein, it grows into the vine stock.” Desire of Ages, p. 675. “Until it becomes one with the parent stock.” Bible Commentary, Vol. 5, p. 1144. “As the vine branch constantly draws the sap from the living vine, so are we to cling to Jesus, and receive from Him by faith the strength and perfection of His own character.” Desire of Ages, p. 676. “The soul dead in trespasses and sins receives life through connection with Christ. By faith in Him as a personal Savior the union is formed. The sinner unites his weakness to Christ’s strength, his emptiness to Christ’s fullness, his frailty to Christ’s enduring might.” Desire of Ages, p. 675. “Those who receive Christ by faith become one with Him in principle and action. They are united to Him, and the life they live is the life of the Son of God.” Upward Look, p. 182. Filled with the Fruits of the Spirit “Abiding in Christ means a constant receiving of His Spirit…” Desire of Ages, p. 676. If we abide in the Vine, we shall bear the fruits of the Spirit.” Ye Shall Receive Power, p. 95. “The branch which had been united with the true vine brings forth, not fruit of its own kind, but the fruit of the vine of which it had become a part. The Spirit of Christ makes them partakers of the divine nature. They become pure, even as He is pure.” Review and Herald, Sept. 20, 1881. “As the graft receives life when united to the vine, so the sinner partakes of the divine nature when in connection with Christ.” Review and Herald, Nov. 2, 1897. “The Life of Christ in you produces the same fruits as in Him.” Desire of Ages, p. 677. Purity and love shine forth in the character, meekness and truth control the life.” Selected Messages, Vol. 1, p. 337.
The words of Christ are spirit and life. Receiving them, you receive the life of the Vine. You live ‘by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.’ ” Desire of Ages, p. 677. “We abide in Christ by faith, by simple childlike trust in His pledged word.” Youth Instructor, Feb. 10, 1898. Live in Continual Communion It is by communion with Him, daily, hourly, by abiding in Him, that we grow in grace.” God’s Amazing Grace, p. 293. “If we would grow and flourish, we must continually draw sap and nourishment from the Living Vine.” Early Writings, p. 73. “The life you have received from Me can be preserved only by continual communion...The channel of communication must be open continually.” Desire of Ages, p. 676. God must show us every step of the way. Every hour we must have the new impulses of His Spirit. Love for Him should be the mainspring of our actions. Every hour has its duties, and every moment its cares...New scenes are opening before us, and we need to hear a voice from heaven, directing us to the right or to the left saying, ‘This is the way; walk ye in it.’ ” Paulson Collection, p. 19. “Every day we are to come to the Lord with full assurance of faith, and to look to Him for wisdom...Those who are guided by the Word of the Lord will discern with certainty between falsehood and truth, between sin and righteousness. He who does the will of God, who walks in the path that God has marked out, cannot stumble and fall. The light of God’s guiding Spirit gives him a clear perception of his duty, and leads him aright till the close of his work.” God’s Amazing Grace, p. 201. Repentance Unites us to Christ
“Connection with Him results in purity of heart, in a faultless life.” Pacific Union Recorder, Jan. 19, 1905.
“When the sinner has repented of his sins, and is united with Christ, as the branch is engrafted in the vine, the nature of the man is changed, and he is a partaker of the divine nature. He loves the things that Christ loves, and hates that which He hates. His desires are in harmony with the will of God. He treasures up the words of Christ, and they abide in him.” Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. 3, p. 90.
“Let no one deceive his own soul in this matter. If you harbor pride, selfesteem, a love for the supremacy...bitterness, evil speaking, lying, deception, slandering, you have not Christ abiding in your heart.” Testimonies to Ministers, p. 441.
Thus it is with the sinner. By repentance and faith, he becomes connected with Jesus Christ, and lives in him.” Review and Herald, Sept. 20, 1881. Keep the Mind Stayed on Christ
When we live by faith on the Son of God, the fruits of the spirit will be seen in our lives; not one will be missing.” Desire of Ages, p. 676.
“Enoch kept the Lord ever before him, and the Inspired Word says that he ‘walked with God.’ He made Christ his constant companion...Day by day he was growing away from his own way into Christ’s way, the heavenly, the divine, in his thoughts and feelings.” Heavenly Places, p. 337.
“Holy thoughts, heavenly affections, and Christlike actions will take the place of impure thoughts, perverse sentiments, and rebellious acts.” Ye Shall Receive Power, p. 33.
Abide in the Word of Christ “It is through the word that Christ abides in His followers.” Desire of Ages, p. 677. “How are we to know that the words of Christ are abiding in us? We are to study His words carefully, and be doers of His word.” Review and Herald, Sept. 27, 1892. When His words of instruction have been received, and have taken possession of us, Jesus is to us an abiding presence, controlling our thoughts and ideas and actions.” Testimonies to Ministers, p.389. “To dwell and abide in Christ is to dwell and abide in His Word; it is to bring heart and character into conformity to His commands.” Review and Herald, Jan. 14, 1896.
“As the mind dwells upon Christ, the character is molded after the divine similitude. The thoughts are pervaded with a sense of His goodness, His love. We contemplate His character, and thus He is in all our thoughts...By beholding, we are conformed to the divine similitude, even the likeness of Christ. To all with whom we associate we reflect the bright and cheerful beams of His righteousness. We have become transformed in character; for heart, soul, mind, are irradiated by the reflection of Him who loved us, and gave Himself for us.” The Faith I Live By, p. 150. This study was taken from the book Our Greatest Need, published by Mike Nicholson, www.ourgreatestneed.org
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Feb. 18, 2009—Fighters of a local self-defense “So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.” Matthew 24:33 force train in eastern Congo. Villages have formed local forces to protect themselves from rebels. Conflicts in the Democratic Republic of the Congo have claimed over 5 million lives and has displaced over 100,000 people since 1995. (Lionel Healing, AFP News).
Army soldiers arrive to patrol Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Sunday, March 15, 2009. Ciudad Juarez, a city of 1.3 million people across the border from El Paso, Texas, has been hit by a wave of drug-fueled violence, prompting federal authorities to dispatch thousands of soldiers and taking the total number of military personnel to 7,500 in Mexico's most violent city. (AP Photo).
March 17, 2009—Bangladeshi firefighters uncover a mass grave discovered at the Bangladesh Rifles headquarters in Dhaka. Bangladeshi soldiers recovered 10 more bodies in a second mass grave in a military compound in the capital Saturday, bringing to 76 the death toll from a mutiny staged by border guards over pay. (AFP/ Munir Uz Zaman)
March 3, 2009 JAKARTA (Reuters) - Four Indonesians died from bird flu in February, bringing the country's total death toll from the disease to 119, officials at the national bird flu commission said on Tuesday.
March 13, 2009, MOGADISHU (AFP) – At least 72 people, mostly children, have died in an outbreak of acute watery diarrhea in southern Somalia this month, local officials said Tuesday. "Many are dying of the watery diarrhea by the day as people drink contaminated water," said Mustafa Abdirahman Osman, a community health worker. "Many others are still sick and need urgent medical assistance." Rampant insecurity and attacks on aid workers have hampered the relief effort for the millions of Somalis affected by war, hunger and disease. The UN estimates that 3.25 million Somalis need humanitarian support.
Crash investigators examine the wreckage of the Turkish airlines plane at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport, Thursday, Feb. 26, 2009. Investigators took detailed photos of the wreckage of a Turkish Airlines Boeing 737 and analyzed black box recordings, trying to piece together why the plane lost speed and crashed into a muddy field, killing nine people and injuring 86.
Pope Benedict XVI gestures from the airplane before leaving from Rome's Leonardo da Vinci airport for a trip to Africa that includes stops in Cameroon and Angola, Tuesday, March 17, 2009. The seven-day pilgrimage is Benedict's first trip as pontiff to Africa, the fastest-growing region for the Roman Catholic Church. (AP Photo/ Pier Paolo Cito)
A group of top church officials from the African Methodist Episcopal Church administer the “laying of hands ceremony” on President Barack Obama during their 48th Quadrennial General Conference Session.
MELBOURNE, March 3, 2009 — New wild fires flared today, but thousands of fire-fighters managed to keep them within fire-breaks despite strong winds and dry conditions in southern Australia following blazes that killed more than 200 people last month. Wind gusts of up to 120kph blew in from the northwest around Victoria state. “We’ve got through today, all things considered, very well indeed,” (AP Photo/ Andrew Brownbill)
Tue Mar 17, 2009. WASHINGTON – You've heard that diabetes hurts your heart, your eyes, your kidneys. New research indicates a more ominous link: That diabetes increases the risk of getting Alzheimer's disease and may speed dementia once it strikes. Doctors long suspected diabetes damaged blood vessels that supply the brain. It now seems even more insidious, that the damage may start before someone is diagnosed with full-blown diabetes, back when the body is gradually losing its ability to regulate blood sugar. (LAURAN NEERGAARD, AP Medical Writer).