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The Daily Brief Thursday, February 21, 2013
"And they sang a new song: 'You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation.'" (Revelation 5:9)
The Daily Brief
1. Bombs Across Hyderabad in Apparent Terrorist Attack- The Atlantic Wire
At least two coordinated bombs went off in the Indian city of Hyderabad, in what appears to be terrorist attack. Reports say that as many as 15 people have been killed, though the number of dead and injured could rise considerably as rescuers and first responders sort through the chaotic scene. According to Reuters, a government official put the death toll at 10, with 50 more injured. Agence France-Presse says 15 have been killed. There were initial reports of as many as five bomb blasts, but only two have been confirmed, and there may have been a third bomb that was unexploded.
- Father , we pray for Your Presence and comfort for the people of India, and all foreigners touched by this tragedy. We ask that You heighten the ability of Indian security forces to stop this kind of devastation.
- "Arise, O Lord, confront him, cast him down; deliver my life from the wicked with Your sword" [Psalm 17: 13]
2. Photographs show new activity at North Korea nuclear site - UK Telegraph
North Korea has resumed activity at a nuclear site following its internationally condemned atomic test, amid fears that the regime is planning to trial further bombs.
- Lord, we bind the plans of North Korea and declare them null and void. Father, let them all fall to the ground unfulfilled!
- "No weapon formed against you shall prosper" [Isaiah 54:17a]
3. Russian Bombers Intercepted Over U.S. Territory of Guam - Breitbart
The Air Force has confirmed that on the night of Obama's State of the Union address (SOTU), U.S. fighter jets had to be scrambled and sent up in response to two Russian bombers circling the U.S. territory of Guam.
- Lord, we pray for Your continued protection of all US interests both at home and abroad. Let all evil plans be revealed!
- "His truth shall be your shield and buckler" [Psalm 91:4b]
4. Senators raise alarm over another possible sale of taxpayer-backed firm to Chinese - Fox News
Republican senators complained Wednesday that U.S. taxpayer dollars could end up boosting the Chinese economy, following reports that a Chinese firm is leading the pack of companies bidding for a majority stake in government-backed Fisker Automotive.
- Father, as China continues to snap up lands and businesses in America, we ask that You will reveal the hidden agendas behind these actions. We pray that You will strengthen American businesses and their ability to pay their bills so that there will be a hedge against these moves.
- "Buy the truth and do not sell it, also wisdom and instruction with understanding." [Proverbs 23:23]
5. Obama Warns Looming Sequester Would Harm US Economy - NBC News
President Barack Obama used his bully pulpit Tuesday to warn of calamitous consequences for the U.S. economy should the automatic spending cuts known as the "sequester" go into effect next Friday.
- Lord, You alone know what is necessary to turn our lumbering economy around. We ask that You will not allow America to be taken down a wrong path of over-spending, and help us to get out of the overwhelming debt.
- "Understanding is a wellspring of life to him who has it. But the correction of fools is folly." [Proverbs 16:22]
6. Texas bill would block police from enforcing new federal gun laws - AP
Under a measure advancing in the Texas Capitol, local police officers could be convicted of a crime for enforcing any new federal gun control laws.
Rep. Steve Toth, a newly elected Republican from the Woodlands, said his proposal would prevent officers from carrying out any future federal orders to confiscate assault rifles and ammunition magazines.
- Thank You, Lord for the move in Texas to stand against government's desire to destroy the Bill of Rights. We pray Your protection over them, and wisdom to prevail in all areas of law enforcement around the United States.
- "whoever listens to Me will dwell safely, and will be secure, without fear of evil." [Proverbs 1:22]
The Middle East in Focus
The Middle East in Focus
This week, for all the headlines cited below, please join us in proclaiming THIS DECREE:
"Ah Lord YHWH! Behold, You have made the heaven and the earth by Your great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for You." (Jeremiah 32:17)
1. US senator calls Jerusalem Israel's capital - AP
An influential Republican senator has called Jerusalem the capital of Israel, taking a stand on an explosive issue between Israel and the Palestinians.
2. Bennett slams Livni, Netanyahu coalition agreement - Times of Israel
Jewish Home party leader Naftali Bennett stated Wednesday that he would not join Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government at any cost and that he is not ruling out taking his party into the opposition.
3. Shas close to joining coalition, will get 3 ministerial posts - Times of Israel
Ultra-Orthodox party Shas is on the verge of signing an agreement with the Likud to join the coalition, with the party's three leaders being rewarded with ministerial posts, Channel 10 news reported Wednesday night.
4. PM echoes Livni, extends hand to Palestinians - Jerusalem Post
Israel is extending its hand once more for peace with the Palestinians, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said Tuesday at a press conference while announcing that former foreign minister Tzipi Livni had joined his coalition and will lead the Israeli peace negotiating team.
The Persecuted Church
Today's Focus: The Persecuted Church
"Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 5:10)
1. Foreigners suspected of trying to spread Christianity arrested in Libya
- Fox News
Four Christians were arrested in the eastern city of Benghazi on Tuesday and are under investigation for printing and distributing books that proselytize Christianity. Police said they found 45,000 books in their possession and that another 25,000 have already been distributed. Spreading Christianity is a crime in the predominantly Muslim North African county.
2. How China Plans to Wipe Out House Churches - Christianity Today
China's Christians felt a noticeable rise in persecution in 2012 as the Communist government began the first of a three-phase plan to eradicate unregistered house churches, a new report says.
3. Pastor beheaded in Tanzania - Christianity Today
Mathayo Kachili, pastor of the Pentecostal Assemblies of God church in Buseresere, Tanzania, was reportedly beheaded by a group of religious extremists in an attack on the church on 11 February.In light of the tragic events in Tanzania and ongoing persecution throughout the world, AG World Missions Executive Director Greg Mundis urges Christians to increase their prayers for the suffering church.
"We must continue to pray for our brothers and sisters in the context of this tragedy in East Africa and for the suffering church worldwide," Mundis says. "Following Christ has a price, as He said it would. The faithful obedience and sacrifice of believers like Pastor Kachili should motivate us to even more fervent and faithful prayer for the many who are suffering for the name of Christ."
More Questions About Hagel
More Questions About Hagel
In recent days new information about controversial speeches by former Senator Chuck Hagel has come to light. Yesterday the Washington Free Beacon reported that during a 2010 appearance at Rutgers University, Hagel allegedly accused Israel of routinely violating U.N. resolutions, called for negotiations with Hamas, labeled Benjamin Netanyahu a "radical" and suggested that Israel was becoming an "apartheid state."
This new revelation comes on the heels of a report last week about another Rutgers speech Hagel gave in 2007. During those remarks, Hagel said, "The State Department has become adjunct to the Israeli Foreign Minister's office." Monday the Daily Caller reported that Hagel's 2007 speech was organized by a foundation directly controlled by the Iranian regime. In fact, Hooshang Amirahmadi, who ran the foundation at the time of Hagel's speech, is a candidate for the Iranian presidency this year.
In recent days, I have received a number of emails expressing frustration that some Republican senators appear willing to end the filibuster of Hagel's nomination. These senators fundamentally believe that the president should get his choices.
As frustrating as that is (and we think Hagel could still be beaten), the really depressing thing is that the overwhelming majority of Senate Democrats campaigned as friends of Israel. Yet not one of them has been willing to stand up to Obama and oppose Chuck Hagel. (Gary Bauer)
Mat Staver, Chairman of the Liberty Counsel, has scheduled a new petition delivery to Capitol Hill on Monday the 25th calling on the Senate to BLOCK THE VOTE on former Senator Chuck Hagel. He has received word that some senators are apparently caving in on voting to oppose Hagel's nomination.
About the Sequester
Obama's Sequester Plan: Dread on Arrival
Yesterday, the White House pulled one of the oldest stunts in the liberal handbook: if the facts don't work in your favor, just scare people with ridiculous claims about what cutting government spending will do. With an emergency medical first responder team as his backdrop, President Obama painted a bleak picture of the country after March 1, when the first wave of sequester cuts is scheduled to hit. "[First responders'] ability to help communities respond to and recover from disasters will be degraded. Border patrol agents will see their hours reduced. FBI agents will be furloughed. Federal prosecutors will have to close cases and let criminals go. . . "
It wasn't exactly Joe Biden's "stop these cuts or there will be more rapes and murders," but President Armageddon, as the Wall Street Journal calls him, did his best sky-is-falling routine. It's an old ploy, Kim Strassel points out, designed to frighten people into supporting government spending. In reality, "voters should scoff at the idea that a $3.6 trillion government can't save one nickel of every dollar [it] spends."
Apart from frightening people, it seems the White House has no legitimate strategy for ending a "crisis" that, ironically, it helped create. While the President complains that these cuts "are not smart, they are not fair, they will hurt our economy, they will add hundreds of thousands of Americans to the unemployment rolls," he seems to forget that he's the one who invented the idea. But instead of showing leadership and offering up solutions for true reform, the President is trying to panic people. Veterans will go hungry, the administration claims, meat will spoil, poor people will be kicked out of their homes, schools won't have teachers, the mentally ill won't be treated. President Obama even argued that the cuts would "jeopardize our military readiness"--something he's never minded before, based on how he's imposed his radical social policy on our nation's troops.
"We agree the sequester is a bad way to cut spending," said Speaker John Boehner's office. "That's why we've twice passed a plan to replace it with common sense cuts and reforms that don't threaten our security, safety, and economy. A solution now requires the Senate--controlled by the President's party--to finally pass a plan of their own."
In the meantime, Speaker Boehner explains, these cataclysmic events are mostly for show. There are plenty of ways to replace the $87 billion in cuts without raising taxes or letting criminals on the loose. "The President got his higher taxes--$600 billion from higher earners, with no spending cuts--at the end of 2012. He also got higher taxes via ObamaCare... No one should be talking about raising taxes when the government is still paying people to play videogames, giving folks free cell phones, and buying $47,000 cigarette-smoking machines. Washington must get serious about its spending problem." Surely a government government that gives food stamps to lottery winners can find a few ways to save." (FRC)
Californians Fasting for Marriage
Californians Fasting for Marriage
Fasting in Advance of Supreme Court Hearing on Proposition 8, Scheduled for March 26th, and DOMA, Scheduled for March 27th.
We're almost month away from the Supreme Court weighing in on the legality of marriage equality and the Defense of Marriage Act: the high court scheduled oral arguments on March 26 for the case against California's Proposition 8 and March 27 for oral arguments on the DOMA case.
In advance of these two hearings,Christians in the State of California have called the nation to a time of prayer and fasting, which began on Monday, February 18th.
We quote, in part:
"In 1973, the United States Supreme Court ruled in favor of abortion allowing women to choose to terminate their pregnancies. The church was silent, allowing the 'legal' genocide of babies in the womb.
Forty years later another public policy related to biblical truth has arisen, marriage, and it has reached the highest court in the land. Marriage will be heard by the United States Supreme Court on March 26 and 27.
Californians responded in 2008 by affirming marriage, changing their state's constitution to ensure marriage as a union between one man and one woman (Proposition 8). In 1996, Congress also passed a federal law known as the Defense of Marriage Act (D.O.M.A.), signed into law by President Bill Clinton. The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to give its ruling on both cases in June (after the hearings take place in March).
Please join others and alert your networks to begin community and church-wide fasts, seeking God's protection of marriage in California and the United States. The Court's ruling on marriage will impact families and churches in our nation. Please do not be silent, as we have lived with the reality of millions of preborn babies aborted for 40 years, and now the fate of marriage is in the hands of nine Supreme Court Justices."- Pray that the Supreme Court will UPHOLD both of these laws that define marriage according to biblical guidelines. Ask our Lord to raise up a nationwide army who will join the citizens of the State of California as they pursue this time of fasting, unto Him. Pray!
- "Even now," declares the Lord, "return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning." (Joel 2:12)
[To raise up an army of prayer warriors, joined in alignment with this call to prayer and fasting]:
"So he said to me, "This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: 'Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,' says the Lord Almighty." (Zech. 4:6)
5 More Weeks of Prayer for Marriage
5 More Weeks of Prayer for Marriage
Partner with the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) and FRC for five more weeks of extraordinary prayer before March 26th and 27th,. Together, we have defended marriage in cases across America. We must prevail in prayer for the U.S. Supreme Court's decision that could redefine marriage for the entire nation. Their ruling on Windsor v. United States could overturn the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) that codifies marriage as a relationship between one man and one woman. Their decision on Hollingsworth v. Perry could permanently overturn California's pro-marriage amendment. In an appeal to supporters, FRC wrote:
The covenant marriage relationship between one man and one woman is a universally accepted social tradition that transcends all cultures and predates any religion and is essential to the stability of society. The legalization of same-sex "marriage" would be detrimental to families--and America... Under the guise of "tolerance" and "fairness," the demand for same-sex "marriage" is actually an attack on traditional marriage and just another front in a much wider war on religious freedom. No person should ever have to choose between following one's faith and following the law. And that is just what will happen if same-sex "marriage" is forced on the American people by a misguided minority.
Dr. Kenyn Cureton, V.P for Church Ministries has prepared an array of resources for pastors and churches to magnify the importance of standing for marriage during the short weeks ahead (download bulletin inserts, sample sermons. Urge your pastor to call your church to prayer for the Supreme Court, which will be hearing these cases on March 26 and 27, and announcing their ruling in June.
May the Spirit of God rest upon the attorneys who will defend marriage. May their cases be clear and their words anointed. May God move each member of the Court by the "wisdom that comes from above" and may they be constantly aware that America and they will give account to the Supreme Judge of the World for their rulings on these monumental cases. Until then, may God's people both prevail in prayer and speak out plainly on these all-important cases!
- " With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God's grace was so powerfully at work in them all." (Acts 4:33)
(Source: FRC Prayer Targets)
The Good News Corner
The Good News Corner:
Oklahoma forms bipartisan Counterterrorism Caucus;
Muslim Brotherhood identified as threat
Will they investigate CAIR?
State Rep. John Bennett (R-Sallisaw) announced the formation of a bipartisan Counterterrorism Caucus in the Oklahoma Legislature during a press conference held today.
Bennett, who chairs the caucus, was flanked at the press conference by a number of state senators and representatives, including caucus co-chairman state Rep. Gus Blackwell, as he detailed the formation of the first-ever counterterrorism caucus in the Oklahoma Legislature. Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Rita Aragon, the secretary of veteran affairs in Oklahoma, also attended and will participate in the caucus.
"We believe that the time has come to address the potential terrorists threats facing the citizens of Oklahoma," Bennett said. "Few people realize the nature and extent of the threats we face and our mission is to identify publicly those threats and come up with a strategy to defeat them."
Bennett, who served as a Counter Terrorism and Intelligence Specialist with the Marine Corps in Iraq and Afghanistan, also pointed out that the Counterterrorism Caucus grew out of a grassroots movement of concerned citizens and identified several of the civilian leaders in attendance. "We the people have spoken and we, their elected representatives, are listening," Bennett said.
Citing evidence from United States vs. The Holy Land Foundation (2008), a federal district court case in Dallas that was the largest terrorism-financing trial in the history of the United States, Bennett talked about the threat of Sharia law. "We are concerned about the possibility of Muslim Brotherhood organizations operating here in Oklahoma whose stated goal is replace our Constitution with Shariah law." Other speakers at the press conference included state Rep. Sally Kern, who is the sponsor of the American Laws for American Courts bill, and state Sen. Ralph Shortey, who sponsored a similar bill in the Senate.
The caucus will also focus on other areas of concern that were mentioned include environmental terrorism and the so-called "lone wolf" terrorists similar to those responsible for the 1995 Murrah Federal Building bombing.
Bennett also pointed out that former CIA Director James Woolsey spoke last year at the High Noon Club in support of the American Laws for American Courts bill and that LTG (Ret.) William "Jerry" Boykin, former commanding general of Delta Force. He also spoke at several other functions by grassroots organizations.
"We had some national leaders who came to Oklahoma last year to help draw attention to some of the issues we are facing and we intend to continue that practice," Bennett said.
More than 70% of Oklahoma's citizens voted in favor of banning sharia law but it was the Muslim Brotherhood-linked CAIR - an unindicted co-conspirator to that Holy Land Foundation conviction - that fought in favor of sharia laws and a judge sided with the terror-linked Muslims.
> > > Pray that similar caucuses will be organized in every other state in the union. The legislatures of the majority of our states are in session now.
Pray for the Harvest!
Pray for the Harvest!
"Do you not say, 'Four months more and then the harvest'? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest." (John 4:35)
Every day, in every nation on earth, tens of thousands of men and women are making decisions for Christ. Now, you can monitor this amazing fact online by literally "watching" as these souls are born again into the Kingdom.
Of course, the identities of those who are coming to the Lord are never revealed, but our God knows who they are!
Join us as we monitor these "names" daily, praying over each one to be mentored and to grow in his or her faith . . . even in these perilous times. You may visit either or both of the sites below, to pray for fields that are ripe for harvest.
Worship With Us Today!
Worship With Us Today!
by laura story
At times I may grow weak and feel a bit discouraged,
knowing that someone, somewhere could do a better job.
For who am I to serve You?I know I don't deserve You.
And that's the part that burns in my heart and keeps me