Archive for Amos 5

Love, Condoms, & Moral Indignation

Posted in Christine "Clarity" McDonald, Culture with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 13, 2018 by paulthepoke

Christine McDonaldFeaturing Christine “Clarity” McDonald

Christine is the current Director of Outreach, Advocacy and Curriculum for Restoration House.

http://restorationhousekc.com/

Amos 5:21 I hate, I despise your feasts, and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies. -God

A few years ago, I operated a street outreach. We went to the streets and parks where I myself had existed for nearly two decades. We took sandwiches and basic hygiene items to the women and men in that area.

I was contacted by a TV news show who wanted to join us. The news crew had done food service during the holidays, but always in an artificial environment. They had never actually gone to the streets where the many who avoided the long feeding lines dwelled.

We brought bean burritos from Taco Bell that night, as well as water and condoms. As I handed the condoms out, the reporter stopped everything. She turned off the microphone.

I knew the deal. I had heard it before from women of faith who had joined us on these outreaches. The ladies who had so much church. I suppose, that they forgot about the human in us all.

I listened as they ranted all the reasons she couldn’t be a part of us giving out condoms. I had heard all the reasons, so I’d just hear them again. My mind raced, thinking maybe she had a new reason. She didn’t; nobody ever did.

“We are promoting their actions of prostitution” or “We can’t promote prostitutes to sell their bodies out here” were reasons commonly cited. But I was geared up and ready. Goodness knows I had given this speech at least fifty times.

 

If you are one of those individuals who might have concerns about giving out condoms in ministry work, then please continue to read this. Give this a fair shot of thought. Consider for a moment that maybe your moral indignation isn’t as productive as you think it is.

We all know by now that I was prostituted. As a formerly prostituted person, my voice provides a different perspective. During my exploitation, I was rarely in a position to go to the store to purchase condoms. If I was working for my “man” or “pimp,” my priority was to make my funds as fast as I could so I could eat and avoid drama. To state it bluntly, condoms were a luxury I couldn’t afford.

Additionally, it wasn’t uncommon for a trick or John to pay an extra twenty bucks to have sex with you without a condom. Statistics tell us that about 68% of all tricks are married or in a “committed” relationship. Do you think their loved ones at home have any clue they are paying for a prostitute to have sex with them, much less without a condom?

The prostitute might turn twenty dates in a 24-hour period, not to mention the times she has been raped. Keep in mind that her man or pimp has other girls he is having sex with – other prostitutes who are having unprotected sex with many others. Are you doing the math here?

A girlfriend or wife learns she is pregnant, and during this joyous announcement from her doctor she is also informed of another piece of highly unexpected – but far from joyous – news that she is now HIV positive. This is an extra “gift” contracted from her husband or her boyfriend – the john who purchased sex from a prostitute. Of course, this means he is infected as well. So, stop and think of how this woman and her unborn child’s life are forever affected by the man’s urge to purchase sex from a prostitute.

Please note. I am not saying all prostitutes have HIV. I worked the streets for nearly two decades and am HIV free! But I have friends who have died of AIDS and some who live with it daily.

This is yet another reason we must end the purchase of human beings. This cycle of exploitation and suffering affects not only the purchaser and the prostituted individual. There are also innocent victims who are affected who play no role in the event yet end up suffering from it.

If we are truly attempting to connect to the humanity of this complex issue, then offering condoms for the prostituted persons we encounter is not only responsible help; it is loving help. Withholding something that could save a life simply because of our moral objections to its use doesn’t stop the activity. Nor does it convict the buyer or seller of sex. All it does is place additional conditions on love and help, therefore devaluing both love and help until neither is recognizable.

HIV is only one of many damaging effects these acts have on unintended victims. The collateral damage abounds in so many ways we can’t easily see. If we are going to truly help, we must be careful of misapplying our moral objections in ways that further compound, rather than help, the problem.

Our ministry is not only for the buyer and seller, but the unintended victims whose lives can be unknowingly changed forever by someone else’s choice to pay for another human being for their own sexual gratification.

 

“Love your neighbor… ALL of ’em!” -Christine “Clarity” McDonald

 

Trend Update: Climate Change, November 2014

Posted in Prophecy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 25, 2014 by paulthepoke

Job 38:22-23 “Have you entered the storehouses of the snow, or have you seen the storehouses of the hail, which I have reserved for the time of distress, for the day of war and battle?”

The context of the verses above is God talking to Job. God is explaining to Job He is in charge of the weather. In Chapter 38 of Job, God is explaining He created the heavens and earth. God gives a brief lesson in astrophysics. He created the animals. He rules the geography of planet Earth.

The timeline is the midpoint of the Tribulation (Matthew 24). The antichrist has claimed to be the Messiah in the Temple. Jesus gives a hint of the possible weather and prayer request in Matthew 24:20. “But pray that your flight will not be in the winter, or on a Sabbath.” See also Mark 13:14-18.

Look at the progressive phenomena in Revelation that takes place in regards to the intensity of the sun.

Revelation 8:12 The fourth angel sounded, and a third of the sun and a third of the moon and a third of the stars were struck, so that a third of them would be darkened and the day would not shine for a third of it, and the night in the same way.

Revelation 9:2 He opened the bottomless pit, and smoke went up out of the pit, like the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by the smoke of the pit.

More smoke is released in Revelation 9:18 A third of mankind was killed by these three plagues, by the fire and the smoke and the brimstone which proceeded out of their mouths.

The net result of more smoke being released is the sun’s rays will be blocked further. What happens if the sun is blocked? It is going to get colder. This is what happened when Mount St. Helens erupted in 1980. Mount Pinatubo (1991) in the Philippines produced ten times as much ash as Mount St. Helens. The result of all of the ash, steam, and chemicals being released into the air was global cooling.

Sulfur compounds in the atmosphere block out the light of the sun, cooling the Earth slightly. If sulfur compounds reach the stratosphere and are carried around the globe by winds, an eruption can mean violent and abrupt changes in the weather worldwide. (http://www.pbs.org/saf/1505/features/climatevolcano.htm)

Amos 5:20 Will not the day of the LORD be darkness instead of light, even gloom with no brightness in it?

Isaiah 13:10 For the stars of heaven and their constellations will not flash forth their light; the sun will be dark when it rises and the moon will not shed its light.

Today, we have been conditioned by the media, politicians, and scientists to believe we are causing and changing the weather. The Bible has something different to say. Psalm 147:16-17 He gives snow like wool; He scatters the frost like ashes. He casts forth His ice as fragments; who can stand before His cold? According to the Bible, the trend during the course of the Tribulation is colder weather.

If you believe we are trending toward the Tribulation, you have a choice to consider. The issue is the weather. Man, led by Al Gore, says we are in a period of global warning and it is going to get worse. God says things are going to cool off during the Tribulation.

Who do you believe?

algorefire

Isaiah 11:3a The Smell of Obedience

Posted in Gospel, Isaiah, Prophecy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 12, 2014 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 11:3a And He will delight in the fear of the LORD…

The Hebrew text reads literally, “and his smelling is in the fear of the Lord.” (NET Bible).

Reyach is Hebrew for smell. The word is translated as “delight” by the NASB version. It can be translated as scent, fragrance, aroma, odor of soothing (technical term for sacrifice to God). Definition provided by Strong’s Concordance.

He, Jesus, will enjoy and desire to respect and revere the LORD as if it had a pleasant smell.

“Reyach” is the word used as God’s response to the sacrificial system in the Old Testament.

Numbers 15:7 and for the drink offering you shall offer one-third of a hin of wine as a soothing aroma to the LORD.

Leviticus 23:13 ‘Its grain offering shall then be two-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil, an offering by fire to the LORD for a soothing aroma, with its drink offering, a fourth of a hin of wine. This is a recipe for bread. God delights in the smell of baked bread. This aspect of the sacrificial system is also looking to the future. Notice the elements, bread and wine. The New Testament equivalent is Communion.

Animal sacrifices were required in the Old Testament to be a reminder of sin. These animal sacrifices upon a burning altar produced a soothing aroma to God. The smell of burning animals with spices, God likes the smell of grilled meat. The blood of these animals could not take away sin. But the blood of Jesus could. See Hebrews 10 for detail.

This same word “reyach” is used for “delight” in Amos 5:21 “I hate, I reject your festivals, nor do I delight in your solemn assemblies. Translation to the religious ones of the day, your religious actions stink. God does not care for performance religion. He wants your heart.

Our response to all of this is to pray. In the throne room of Heaven, prayers are equated with incense. Our prayers are a fragrant aroma to God. Revelation 8:3-4 Another angel came and stood at the altar, holding a golden censer; and much incense was given to him, so that he might add it to the prayers of all the saints on the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, went up before God out of the angel’s hand. Prayers smell good to God and He likes them.

He, Jesus, will enjoy and desire to respect and revere the LORD as if it had a pleasant smell.

Paul the Poke

Habakkuk 1:5 Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told. -LORD God

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