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Jesus: “Will You Also Leave Me?” [#WillYouAlsoLeaveMe #WillYouAlsoLeaveJesus #ChristianViews]

The truth of all of Christianity is that there are sometimes very hard things we have to walk through which we do not understand.

If we choose to press in and allow God to grant us His strength and peace, then He will bring us to the other side of the hard place. If we choose to not press in to Him, it is a grave mistake, because that is where most people get bitter and choose to “walk with Him no more!”

Here is the difference between a friend and a buddy.

A buddy says things like: “Hey dude go ahead and smoke that weed, or drink that alcohol, it is not going to hurt you!” Or go ahead and have premarital sex, you won’t get pregnant! Party party; have a blast, if it feels good do it, everyone else is!

But a friend is different.

A true friend says, “No, don’t do those things! They can hurt you, you can be killed in a car accident, or your girlfriend can get pregnant.” A true friend stands up for what is right and cares about you as an individual.

Jesus never made any of the disciples, or anyone else, His buddy!

This is where many fall away from the faith. For many, it possibly will be the hinge that turns the door for them on their way out of the Christianity they once professed!

One of the most subtle yet convincing false teachings that has risen its ugly head in the past several decades, coming in several flavors, is the teaching that Jesus wants to be your buddy!

He is the false Jesus that winks at sin. He is the false Jesus that allows you to do whatever you want to; you just need to ask for His blessing on it! He is the Jesus that causes many people to fall away when their formulas that they have come up do not work!

Incorporating this false Jesus persona does not produce some concocted miracle during any given crisis of life.

It morphs from the sincere “Why God did you allow this?” question of a solid Christian with a true Biblical relationship with the living Christ, to a “Jesus my buddy, I just lost everything while trusting You to bless my ‘not ordained of God’ plans. You must be a false god, so I am leaving You” scenario.

When we as believers finally stop thinking of Jesus as if He is some kind of “buddy” He will be able to teach us about the hard lessons of Biblical Christianity. Jesus was clearly teaching those disciples, about the hard things they would have to go through as believers.

Oh that many of those today in places of great influence would stop promoting and believing that Jesus is their buddy and start seeing Him as a true friend, a friend that sticks closer than a brother.

A friend who will reveal in prayer what the Father is doing eventually during a severe trial if we will just pray through on it.

He is a friend who would ask all of us today, “Will you also leave Me?”

Then may we be like Peter who responded, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You alone have the words of eternal life. You are our only hope!” (John 6:68)

Will you also leave Jesus?
Christian Post

Christian street preacher, Oluwole Ilesanmi who had his Bible confiscated as he was handcuffed in Enfield, London, by MPS accused of Islamophobia awarded £2,500 for wrongful arrest [#OluwoleIlesanmi #ChristianPreacher #MPS]

A Christian street preacher who had his Bible confiscated as he was handcuffed by police has been awarded £2,500 for wrongful arrest.

A video of Oluwole Ilesanmi pleading with a police officer to “not take my Bible away” has been viewed millions of times since his arrest in February 2019.

Ilesanmi was detained outside Southgate tube station in Enfield, north London, by Metropolitan police officers after he was accused of Islamophobia by a passerby.

The Christian admitted describing Islam as an “aberration” but said he was simply expressing his opinion rather than preaching hate against Muslims.

Footage of the arrest showed Ilesanmi, 64, being told by an officer that he was “causing problems, disturbing people’s days” and that “no one wants to hear that. They want you to go away.”

The video shows a police officer snatching a Bible from Ilesanmi’s hand, as the preacher says: “No, no, no, no, no. Don’t take my Bible away.” One of the officers then says: “You should’ve thought about that before being racist.”

Ilesanmi was led away to a police car and driven 3 and a 1/2 miles away to a bus stop where he was de-arrested.

Ilesanmi said he had been awarded £2,500 for wrongful arrest for his humiliating and distressing treatment.

“I believe God loves everyone, including Muslims, but I have the right to say I that I don’t agree with Islam – we are living in a Christian country, after all.

“I was upset when they took away my Bible. They just threw it in the police car. They would never have done that if it had been the Koran. Whatever happened to freedom of speech?”
– Oluwole Ilesanmi, Christian street preacher

Ilesanmi will on Tuesday, July 29, 2019 hand a petition to the Home Office asking for greater protection for street preachers. The campaign, which is being supported by the group Christian Concern, has been signed more than 38,000 times.

“The MPS has reached a settlement with a man arising from an incident on 23 February near to Southgate Underground station. It would not be appropriate to discuss further details of this.”
– A Scotland Yard spokewoman

“The Met respects and upholds the rights of all individuals to practice freedom of speech, and this includes street preachers of all religions and backgrounds.

“However, if the language someone uses is perceived as being a potential hate crime, it is only right that we investigate.

“That is the role of the police, even if a decision is subsequently made that their actions are not criminal. In this case, it was deemed appropriate to remove the man from the area.”
– Supt Neil Billany, of the force

Christian preacher accused of racism gets wrongful arrest payout
The Guardian

Pass Christian school supply giveaway a huge success in Mississippi [#PassChristianSchool #Giveaway #Mississippi]

One Pass Christian school supply giveaway was a huge success after 100s wiped the inventory in less than 30 minutes.

“We let them in at 1:55, and by 2:15 all the backpacks were gone, most of the supplies were gone”
– Event organizer Prescott Williams

Williams and his family spent the last 2 weeks preparing more than 120 backpacks for the event and collecting the supplies to go in them. According to Williams, he and his family have only been collecting school supplies for 2 weeks, but the donations have poured in.

They planned to fill each backpack with supplies specific to their educational level. The event was targeted toward helping students entering kindergarten to 8th grade.

“We probably had about 200 people lined up outside the park. A long line a bunch of smiling kids. Then we cranked up Old Town Road and started rolling them in.”
– Prescott Williams

It was not long before tables on the Fleitus Avenue basketball court were nearly empty. The event was billed to run from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., so volunteers made sure to give every pen, pencil and notebook away.

“We know we still have got a little bit left over but for the most part, everyone got everything they needed.”
– Volunteer Gary Maurice.

When he learned about the idea for the drive, he was ready to help out however he could.

Pass Christian nurse collects more than 100 backpacks for back-to-school giveaway
WLOX

Joshua Harris, author of best-selling book I Kissed Dating Goodbye “falling away” from the faith and no longer identifies as a Christian [#JoshuaHarris #IKissedDatingGoodbye #FallingAway]

Joshua Harris, the author of the best-selling book I Kissed Dating Goodbye, announced in an Instagram post Friday, July 26, 2019 that he is no longer a Christian.

The shocking admission comes a week after Harris publicly announced that he and his wife, Shannon, were separating after 20 years of marriage, but would remain “friends” as they continue to raise their 3 children together.

In the Instagram post, Harris commented on the responses he received about his pending divorce and dropped another shocking announcement by revealing that he is “falling away” from the faith and no longer identifies as a Christian.

Harris also apologized to the “LGBTQ+ community” for not supporting same-sex marriage and affirming their place in the church.

Here is the Instagram post in full:

My heart is full of gratitude. I wish you could see all the messages people sent me after the announcement of my divorce. They are expressions of love though they are saddened or even strongly disapprove of the decision.

I am learning that no group has the market cornered on grace. This week I’ve received grace from Christians, atheists, evangelicals, exvangelicals, straight people, LGBTQ people, and everyone in-between. Of course there have also been strong words of rebuke from religious people. While not always pleasant, I know they are seeking to love me. (There have also been spiteful, hateful comments that angered and hurt me.

The information that was left out of our announcement is that I have undergone a massive shift in regard to my faith in Jesus. The popular phrase for this is “deconstruction,” the biblical phrase is “falling away.” By all the measurements that I have for defining a Christian, I am not a Christian. Many people tell me that there is a different way to practice faith and I want to remain open to this, but I’m not there now.

Martin Luther said that the entire life of believers should be repentance. There’s beauty in that sentiment regardless of your view of God. I have lived in repentance for the past several years — repenting of my self-righteousness, my fear-based approach to life, the teaching of my books, my views of women in the church, and my approach to parenting to name a few. But I specifically want to add to this list now: to the LGBTQ+ community, I want to say that I am sorry for the views that I taught in my books and as a pastor regarding sexuality. I regret standing against marriage equality, for not affirming you and your place in the church, and for any ways that my writing and speaking contributed to a culture of exclusion and bigotry. I hope you can forgive me.

3 years ago, Harris also apologized for the advice he gave in his 1997 book, I Kissed Dating Goodbye, that he wrote when he was just 20 years old before he had ever been in a dating relationship. In the book he described dating as a “training ground for divorce.”

“I no longer agree with its central idea that dating should be avoided. I now think dating can be a healthy part of a person developing relationally and learning the qualities that matter most in a partner.”
– Harris wrote in a statement posted on his website.

Harris then announced last year that the book would be discontinued.

“In light of the flaws I now see in I Kissed Dating Goodbye, I think it’s best to discontinue its publication, as well other supplemental resources tied to it (this includes the 2 books I wrote after it whose content is similar).”
– Harris

Harris also previously served as senior pastor at Covenant Life Church, a megachurch in Gaithersburg, Maryland, and stepped down from that position in 2014 after a former church volunteer was convicted of child sex abuse.

That same year, Harris also resigned from his position at the Reformed ministry, The Gospel Coalition.

Joshua Harris falling away from faith: ‘I am not a Christian’
Christian Post

Author of Christian relationship guide says he has lost his faith
Joshua Harris says his marriage is over and apologizes to LGBT+ people for promoting bigotry
The Guardian

Phil Heller announced as new lead pastor of Crossroads Christian Church, one of Tri-State’s largest congregations with campuses in Newburgh and on Evansville’s West Side in Indiana [#PhilHeller #Crossroads #Indiana]

Phil Heller has been announced as the new lead pastor of Crossroads Christian Church, one of the Tri-State’s largest congregations with campuses in Newburgh and on Evansville’s West Side in Indiana.

Heller’s hire was recommended by the search team to Crossroads Christian Church elders. Elders unanimously accepted the recommendation.

Heller was on the staff of Crossroads from 1996 to 2002 as student ministries pastor and high school pastor.

He was executive pastor for 13 years at White River Christian Church in Noblesville, Indiana, where he was responsible for providing direction for executing the church’s vision, mission and strategy and developing leadership among the staff and congregation, according to a release from Crossroads.

Heller has a bachelor’s in specialized ministries from Kentucky Christian University and is near to completing his masters in Organizational Leadership from Indiana Wesleyan University.

“I am excited about rejoining the tri-state community. And I look forward to pursuing the collective vision among Evansville area church leaders to see the Tri-State be a place where everyone flourishes.”
– Phil Heller

Crossroads Christian Church announces new lead pastor
Evansville Courier & Press