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In case you missed it, yesterday’s post was a thorough one on John MacArthur’s biblical thoughts about the current protests.

It’s worthwhile reading that, if you haven’t already, before moving on to recent protest scenes in the United States, where young and old are railing against each other while the coronavirus pandemic rages on.

Our first stop is The Villages in Florida, a conurbation of retirement settlements for the well-heeled middle class. In 2008, many residents supported John McCain. In 2012, many went for Mitt Romney. In 2016, many supported then-candidate Donald Trump.

This was the scene late last week, as Trump supporters and Democrats waged a shouting war against each other. Strong language in the second video. I’m glad she’s not my mayor:

This is our future. Remember, these people have grandchildren, who are young adults.

In a sense, it’s amusing for some onlookers …

… but there can be serious problems, such as STDs among this age group. Coronavirus could be there as well:

Hmm. How many of these people were politically active back in the 1960s?

Let’s leave Florida and travel a few hundred miles north to Raleigh, North Carolina, where a BLM protest took place with 100% white people. Two black conservatives turned up by chance as spectators:

I really wish there had been more interaction here. I’ll get to that shortly.

One wonders if it would have gone like this:

Well, when you’re in your 20s, you know everything. I know I did at the time, like this woman’s niece:

Yet, many of us in our 40s and beyond (I’m at the latter end), were raised to be colour blind and adopt the teachings of Martin Luther King on character. I remember the civil rights era. My parents and many others were shocked at what went on in the South. Yet, that has now been forgotten. Millions had sympathy for the plight of American blacks who could not truly vote (without jumping through hoops, figuratively) until … 1965, with Democrats being the main objectors to that legislation. Once again, Republicans led the way to equality. Since then, further legislation has helped to bring different races to further equality in unemployment and housing.

No one who lived through the civil rights era ever forgot it, so it is unclear why these protesters are so angry. One would have thought the lessons of the recent past would have been transmitted to the next generation. Perhaps not.

Interestingly, Benji Irby’s friend on the day, Shemeka Michelle, filmed a much longer video of the protest:

She said that it seemed the whites protested in order to feel better about themselves.

Perhaps it is some sort of atonement.

Oddly, only one of the protesters there to support black lives bothered to speak to her:

After the protest, she says the other whites avoided her and Benji Irby and went on their way.

Maybe the protesters have never lived amongst people of another race? Maybe they feel bad about it. Well, that’s no reason to take it out on everyone else:

Perhaps it is about control.

Our last stop is across the country in the Pacific Northwest: Portland, Oregon.

Protesters want to take down the monument to the Oregon Trail:

Precisely.

If missionaries had not organised the Oregon Trail after Lewis and Clark’s expedition to the Pacific Northwest, someone else would have. The British tried it and were unsuccessful.

The move westward had been laid out by President Thomas Jefferson in 1803. From Wikipedia:

In 1803, President Thomas Jefferson issued the following instructions to Meriwether Lewis: “The object of your mission is to explore the Missouri river, & such principal stream of it, as, by its course & communication with the waters of the Pacific Ocean, whether the Columbia, Oregon, Colorado and/or other river may offer the most direct & practicable water communication across this continent, for the purposes of commerce.”[1] Although Lewis and William Clark found a path to the Pacific Ocean, it was not until 1859 that a direct and practicable route, the Mullan Road, connected the Missouri River to the Columbia River.

As I remember learning about it in history class more than once, it was a big deal in terms of trade. To begin with, there was fur. Later there was gold.

The plan was called the Manifest Destiny, as History.com explains:

By the 1840s, the Manifest Destiny had Americans in the East eager to expand their horizons. While Lewis and Clark had made their way west from 1804 to 1806, merchants, traders and trappers were also among the first people to forge a path across the Continental Divide.

A merchant, Nathan Wyeth, led the first group of missionaries who settled in Idaho in 1834.

Marcus Whitman, a Methodist missionary from the state of New York, made the first successful crossing to what we know as the state of Washington in 1836. His wife, Narcissa, kept a diary of their perilous journey:

The party made it to the Green River Rendezvous, then faced a grueling journey along Native American trails across the Rockies using Hudson Bay Company trappers as guides. They finally reached Fort Vancouver, Washington, and built missionary posts nearby—Whitman’s post was at Waiilatpu amid the Cayuse Indians.

Whitman’s small party had proved both men and women could travel west, although not easily. Narcissa’s accounts of the journey were published in the East and slowly more missionaries and settlers followed their path which became known as the Whitman Mission Route.

In 1842, the Whitman mission was closed by the American Missionary Board, and Whitman went back to the East on horseback where he lobbied for continued funding of his mission work. In the meantime, missionary Elijah White led over 100 pioneers across the Oregon Trail.

Whitman led another expedition of settlers in 1843, destined for what we know as Oregon:

The group included 120 wagons, about 1,000 people and thousands of livestock. Their trek began on May 22 and lasted five months.

It effectively opened the floodgates of pioneer migration along the Oregon Trail and became known as the Great Emigration of 1843.

Unfortunately, the settlers brought measles with them, infecting the Cayuse. Whitman did try to help cure those infected:

After a measles epidemic broke out in 1847, the Cayuse population was decimated, despite Whitman using his medical knowledge to help them.

In the ongoing conflict, Whitman, his wife and some of the mission staff were killed; many more were taken hostage for over a month. The incident sparked a seven-year war between the Cayuse and the federal government.

We can say what we like in the 21st century, but travelling from coast to coast involved a lot of planning and expense:

Emigrants had to sell their homes, businesses and any possessions they couldn’t take with them.

They could not take a lot of possessions, because they had to ensure that their covered prairie schooner wagons could accommodate their families and their food. There weren’t any real settlements at the time, so everything had to be purchased in advance. There were no restaurants, cafés or grocery stores along the way. Wives had to make every meal from scratch. The most common meat was bacon. Imagine how limited their meals were day to day for five months. How awful.

So they put up with that. Then they had to endure a) the weather and b) the terrain:

There were slightly different paths for reaching Oregon but, for the most part, settlers crossed the Great Plains until they reached their first trading post at Fort Kearney, averaging between ten and fifteen miles per day.

From Fort Kearney, they followed the Platte River over 600 miles to Fort Laramie and then ascended the Rocky Mountains where they faced hot days and cold nights. Summer thunderstorms were common and made traveling slow and treacherous.

It’s a wonder anyone was able to make the journey. The major landmark along the route was in Wyoming at Independence Rock:

The settlers gave a sigh of relief if they reached Independence Rock—a huge granite rock that marked the halfway point of their journey—by July 4 because it meant they were on schedule. So many people added their name to the rock it became known as the “Great Register of the Desert.”

After leaving Independence Rock, settlers climbed the Rocky Mountains to the South Pass. Then they crossed the desert to Fort Hall, the second trading post.

From there they navigated Snake River Canyon and a steep, dangerous climb over the Blue Mountains before moving along the Columbia River to the settlement of Dalles and finally to Oregon City. Some people continued south into California.

There was also a lot of disease, possible conflicts with native Americans — and death:

According to the Oregon California Trails Association, almost one in ten who embarked on the trail didn’t survive.

Most people died of diseases such as dysentery, cholera, smallpox or flu, or in accidents caused by inexperience, exhaustion and carelessness. It was not uncommon for people to be crushed beneath wagon wheels or accidentally shot to death, and many people drowned during perilous river crossings.

Travelers often left warning messages to those journeying behind them if there was an outbreak of disease, bad water or hostile American Indian tribes nearby. As more and more settlers headed west, the Oregon Trail became a well-beaten path and an abandoned junkyard of surrendered possessions. It also became a graveyard for tens of thousands of pioneer men, women and children and countless livestock.

With the advent of the railroads in 1869, covered wagons gradually became obsolete.

The westward migration continued — more comfortably. You can read more here.

So, one wonders what these protesters in Oregon are angry about. Perhaps they should live elsewhere?

As John MacArthur says (see yesterday’s post), these protests are built on lies, helping no one.

Before reading this, here are Parts 1, 2 and 3 of a series on coronavirus and lockdown.

It seems that the British silent majority were largely fine with obeying the rules that Boris Johnson’s government set until the end of May.

By then, they began asking questions about the duration.

During the first two months of lockdown, they understood that the reasons were not to put too much pressure on the NHS.

However, as Boris and his ministers are taking only ‘baby steps’ (Boris’s words) to release us, many wonder what the real plan is.

Rightly or wrongly, suspicion is rife:

There is also the question about the NHS and the need for treatment outside of COVID-19.

Those of us who watch the daily coronavirus briefings from the government can’t help but notice the messaging, especially from Health Secretary Matt Hancock:

I missed this little titbit from the coronavirus briefing on Friday, June 5. Hancock said, ‘As the NHS reopens’. Hmm:

Yet, Britons are still missing out on non-coronavirus NHS treatments that are urgent:

I couldn’t agree more with this next observation from Prof Karol Sikora:

Then we have the unknown consequences of Big Data intrusions into our lives:

This is now climbing up the chain to stain Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the champion of his soi-disant ‘Government of the People’:

The goalposts have clearly shifted since Boris’s stonking victory in December 2019:

Lockdown has now gone on too long:

Despite what the government and scientists say on the weekday coronavirus briefings, other statistics find their way through the established narrative:

Yet, part of the blame also lies with the proportion of the British public who are afraid of re-engaging with society the way they did before lockdown:

Those who are afraid can stay at home. Let the rest of us get back to real life.

This London Assembly member from the Brexit Party is spot on. Lockdown must end:

Social distancing will end up being a killer, too:

One hopes it doesn’t come to this:

One wonders whether there is such a thing as conservatism any more:

Or is the WHO driving this? They must think we are stupid. Perhaps we are:

We will never be in a risk-free, virus-free world.

Ending on Boris, for now, this is something I missed. Then again, I don’t listen to BBC Radio 4. Even if I had, I would have thought that Boris’s father Stanley was voicing his own views, not his son’s:

Boris is still better than his Labour counterparts — Jeremy Corbyn (then) and Keir Starmer (now).

However, his polling will take a dive unless he restores what he called the People’s Government.

More tomorrow: coronavirus and the June riots.

See Parts 1 and 2 of this series before reading more about Britain’s silent majority who are angry about lockdown.

At present, here we are, unable to shop, get our hair cut and must still practice two-metre social distancing. Masks are optional except on public transport:

Whether we are old or young, we are treated like dirt:

And what if this coronavirus were dirt, rather than a virus?

If that is true — and I’m not saying it is — what then?

It couldn’t be, could it? After all, the First Minister of Northern Ireland, the DUP’s Arlene Foster, has briefed the Queen on COVID-19:

But what about all the deaths in care homes and the lives lost?

What about people’s businesses going to ground?

Thank goodness for the government’s generous furlough, but …

And what about travel?

This is going to be dire:

No more on board delicious dining for you:

What if you cannot reasonably travel with a face covering?

What about everything else in life?

Who wants to live like that?

This is turning the apolitical into political activists:

Is this ever going to end?

If so, how?

Perhaps it is a giant reset.

After all, we are told this is (shudder) the ‘new normal’:

The ‘new normal’ could be green:

Didn’t we all enjoy the bluer skies on those sunny May days? We could keep them. ‘Fewer holidays for you’, the government could say:

One does have to wonder about government advisors from the public sector:

These people do not encounter the everyday man or woman. They live in their own scientific, misanthropic bubble.

They do not care what happens to us. After all, they have a guaranteed salaries and gold-plated pensions.

To be continued next week.

On April 2, in response to my post on Project Veritas hospital interviews, a reader of mine, Lynnfay, and I had a discussion about cause of death during the coronavirus outbreak.

I linked to an article that said Italy and New York State were determining the cause of death as being COVID-19 even when there were underlying causes.

She wondered why reporting higher COVID-19 death rates would be in anyone’s interest.

I responded, ‘We’ll see.’

A fortnight later, evidence is coming to the fore about listing COVID-19 as the cause of death. What follows comes from the United States and Northern Ireland. The latter has a devolved government, so they have a certain latitude in their legislation.

Before looking at their methods, however, here is a snapshot of the global death figures during the coronavirus pandemic.

This tweet from Candace Owens caught my eye:

Let’s go back to 2015. These were the weekly deaths in England and Wales in January of that year:

With those figures in mind, how many people still think we should be in lockdown?

United States

Moving on to the United States, someone replied to the tweet above from Candace Owens with this:

Ohio is recording many deaths as COVID-19 mortalities. Is there more federal funding to be had by doing so?

Insurance could also factor into this:

On April 10, The Daily Caller reported on Ohio:

Health departments across the state of Ohio will now includes people it suspects of having coronavirus, but have not tested positive for the virus in its official count.

The United States has a high COVID-19 death rate.

The Daily Caller article cites Dr Deborah Birx, who appears with President Trump and Vice President Pence at the daily coronavirus press briefings. The article includes this tweet from Wednesday, April 8:

concerns over the accuracy of the count have emerged after top White House coronavirus adviser, Dr. Deborah Birx said during a press conference earlier this week that the government was counting patients who died with the virus in its official death toll, even if the patient did not die as a direct result of the virus.

The other national health ‘expert’ chimed in:

Dr. Anthony Fauci later dismissed concerns of over counting as a “conspiracy theory.”

Here is another tweet from the same briefing:

This is not going down well with the general public:

The fragrant Dr Birx must have sensed pushback. The following day, she tried to deny it:

On April 10, a member of the public posted a screenshot of CDC (Center for Disease Control) guidelines for cause of death:

On April 8, Gateway Pundit reported on a state senator from Minnesota who said he received a seven-page document from the US Department of Health and Human Services with guidelines for death certificates during the COVID-19 outbreak (bold emphases in the original, purple ones mine):

Dr. Scott Jensen, a Minnesota physician and Republican state senator said he received a 7-page document coaching him to fill out death certificates with a COVID-19 diagnosis without a lab test to confirm the patient actually had the virus.

“Last Friday I received a 7-page document that told me if I had an 86-year-old patient that had pneumonia but was never tested for COVID-19 but some time after she came down with pneumonia we learned that she had been exposed to her son who had no symptoms but later on was identified with COVID-19, then it would be appropriate to diagnose on the death certificate COVID-19,” Dr. Scott Jensen said.

Dr. Jensen explained that this is not a normal procedure.

Dr. Jensen said for example if the same patient had pneumonia during flu season and he didn’t have a test confirming the patient also had influenza, he would never diagnose the patient with influenza on the death certificate.

Here is his interview:

There IS money in overstating coronavirus deaths.

We can see that in the new CARES Act, America’s coronavirus emergency legislation:

The Daily Caller article above about changing estimates is behind a paywall, so I cannot see it, but someone responded with this, which seems reasonable:

Unrelated to The Daily Caller, Candace Owens had this to say about changing estimates:

Let’s look back at history:

And let’s not forget that the Spanish Flu Epidemic raged at the end of the First World War.

Northern Ireland

Philip Watson, a data analyst from Northern Ireland, has delved into their death rates from COVID-19.

The United Kingdom has generous provisions from the Treasury during this pandemic.

This is a link to the document he cites below:

He then pits those numbers against the lockdown:

Conclusion

Please think long and hard about what is happening to all of us during our respective lockdowns.

‘The new normal’? I jolly well hope not. We’re being deceived.

Recording deaths as being COVID-19 when they are not IS about money.

The other day, I entered into an exchange with a WP blogger, prognosticatasaurusrex, or Prex, for short.

He writes at politicalprognosticator.

This is what he had to say about much of the worldwide reaction to coronavirus, which a talk radio show in France has called ‘draconian in restricting people’s freedom of movement’.

Why is this? I have also had several conversations offline about this. My friends and I do not understand the general panic.

What Prex has to say sums it up perfectly.

We exchanged comments on an excellent coronavirus thread, ‘Of Exponents and Viruses’ at the Q Tree.

I said, in part:

Some might also say this is groundwork for controlling populations worldwide and how various countries react …

This is the text of his first comment, which he has kindly allowed me to post in full:

Church, IF they succeed in doing this just ONCE, we will see it over and over again. I call it the sky is falling narrative or the boy that cried wolf. As we know, it did NOT end well for the boy, as eventually the woodsman (We the people) IGNORED the boy’s cries (the MSM) and the wolf (Trump?) came and ATE the boy.

My GREATEST fear is that this will, as I predict, turn out to be NOWHERE near as bad as the MSM and Cabal are hyping it to be, and then, sometime in the future, after a man like Trump, we WILL get hit by a REAL killer, and the people, using the old axiom fool me once, will IGNORE it, and they we will have a TRUE, and not manufactured crisis.

There was simply Z E R O reasons to jump the shark like we are and continue to do so, calm, common sense, and CAUTION would have worked, probably even BETTER.

Instead we have a 100% MSM induced spate of market fluctuations, panic buying, hoarding, price gouging, and unnecessary closures.

IF I am right, we have all been exposed to this for weeks if not MONTHS. The facts that they CONTINUE to skew the numbers, and HYPE the panic, over the one facility, in WA state, was red flag #1 for me.

Then, they NEVER talk about the % of ALREADY RECOVERED, red flag #2. Red flag #3, is they ALWAYS talk about the WORST possible case “exponential” projections, or the “curve”. They NEVER take into account EARLIER first introduction, the preventative measures ALREADY taken, and the basic differences between a country like the US and the other hotbeds like China, Italy, and Iran.

Let’s highlight those, just a few. What is the BASIC quality and condition differences between here and the other spots? Do we have JAM packed population centers with little sanitary or BASIC hygiene? NO, although some areas in some of the dem controlled cities are getting there, they are still like the Starship Enterprise vs the Minnow from Gilligan’s Island in terms of conditions, facilities, infrastructure, etc. Think ZERO sewers as a START, then think communal water supplies, UNTREATED, used for more than just drinking.

Then, let’s talk healthcare. Try as they might, the left have STILL not been able to destroy the American healthcare system, the BEST in the world. Even places like South Korea, and Taiwan, despite what the MSM will tell you, cannot TOUCH our facilities, personnel, or levels of care. Want PROOF? Do the South Koreans, Chinese, and Iranians keep their students in house in their countries? NO, why do you think that is, if they were so advanced and good and better than us? No, my friend, they send their BEST and BRIGHTEST right here in the good old USA. Our ONLY failing here, thanks to dems like Clinton and Obama, is outsourcing our medical equipment, supplies, and pharmaceutical production to China, and THAT, is about to change, change big, and change QUICKLY.

Then let’s look at response and government actions. The Chinese, and the South Koreans, as well as the Italians, did not ACT until there was ALREADY a serious condition, they ALLOWED the virus to spread like wildfire BEFORE taking drastic action.

In the US, despite the impeachment distraction, despite MSM and dem protestation of “racism”, and despite dem obfuscation, indifference, and interference, Trump took bold decisive action in stopping ALL travel to China in January, once the world found out the lie China had been spewing.

I submit we were all already exposed at that time, but, Trump’s actions stemmed NEW influxes, maybe new mutated strains, from entering, and that gave us VALUABLE time to get ahead, and we, I believe are WAY ahead, despite the hype.

ALL these things and MORE, like the fact that Italy and China have some of the OLDEST populations in the WORLD, and this virus is VASTLY disproportionate in its effects on the elderly, a STRANGE curiosity. This virus basically discriminants AGAINST the young, and hones in on the elderly, red flag #4. Normally it is the very old, and the VERY young that are affected by viruses, NOT in this case. The instances of INFECTION, not mortality, are 1% or less in teens through infant, a BIG outlier from norm.

So, in closing, thanks for the reply, I am trying to EASE the fears with calm, reasoned FACTS, not projections. IMHO, we jumped the shark on the closings and cancellations, BIGLY. We should have STARTED, if we were going that route, to have the elderly and infirm curtail their exposures, not the young and middle aged, of which 80% show little or NO symptoms. there was simply NO reason to go full “outbreak” level panic here, yet.

The hype leads to disinfo. The disinfo leads to fear, the fear leads to PANIC, hoarding, and panic buying. The panic COULD lead to civil discord, looting, and worse. It was STUPID, and not on Trump’s end, on the people that supposedly work for him like RR’s sister [Rod Rosenstein’s sister Dr Nancy Messonnier of the Center for Disease Control, CDC], and some of the other health “officials” He rightly, finally, got CONTROL of the message, at least at the federal level thanks to the task force. Now it is local and state health “officials” like the twit in Ohio, spreading hysteria by GUESSTIMATING. WTF. She SHOULD, rightly, be fired, and SHOULD lose her medical license.

The FIRST rule of a crisis situation is to REMAIN CALM, and NOT panic. In an active shooter situation, usually, those that keep their cool, SURVIVE, those that PANIC, sadly, die.

Calm, and reasoned allows people to THINK, and not react, or OVERREACT. Hopefully, in a few days if not weeks, we WILL turn the corner, I think it will be shorter rather than longer.

One last thing. The MSM hype, AGAIN they ALWAYS over reach. They CANNOT continue the stoking to defcon 5 of 24/7 hysteria, breathlessly reporting NOTHING but covid 19. People are ALREADY saturated with it, they are growing TIRED of it, especially with no sports, and little movies to go see. Soon, they will simply TURN IT OFF. Do you know what happens then? I will bet my gopher suit that this “crisis” will suddenly, miraculously, END. If you cut off either the oxygen or the source of a fire it DIES.

Prex gave me permission to publish his comment (emphases in purple mine):

Feel free, I WANT people to NOT panic (what the Cabal want); this is getting ridiculous, when they start closing restaurants and bars, the next thing is a curfew. There simply is NO need for this, at least not at this time. This is their dry run, after Trump something like this will be MUCH worse. We the people need to get and STAY informed, and start MAJOR pushback on the insanity. Caution is one thing, sequestration is QUITE another. Remember we have FEWER than 70 deaths, and 30 of those were in ONE spot, not one state, not one city, one BUILDING.

This is akin to shutting down the country of Legionnaires disease…think on that.

Again, feel free to post ANY of my comments here, or my blog, just link me as proper credit…you know the deal. I would suggest sharing mine and Steve in CO’s running thread, it is quite informative if I do say so myself! Thanks, Prex

He then added this:

I would suggest taking in a post by Jim Hoft on the Gateway Pundit, he is BASICALLY, proving my point. It is about the MSM openly LYING to us all about the ACTUAL death rate of covid 19 vs the seasonal flu. He has an interesting take that dovetails with my theory. Basically, the REAL numbers of flu deaths here NOW are 10 % of the REAL documented cases. 22000 of 220000 documented cases. For Covid 19 it is 3.4 % for the REAL documented cases, including the OUTLIER of the one facility.

The reason the CDC can state that the Flu mortality rate is .1% is that they are ESTIMATING that there are 36 million infected here in the US with the flu, and THEN extrapolating the REAL deaths out of THAT number 22000 of 36000000. That my friends is what we call GIGO.

Why this is IMPORTANT. IF they can estimate the flu numbers, because they KNOW the spread, they KNOW the gestation, why can’t they do the SAME with covid 19?

They have NEARLY the same sample size WW 178000 vs 222000 for the FLU here. They KNOW the mortality rate WW is 3.8%, 5786 of 178000. So why didn’t they ESTIMATE the numbers of infected and compare and extrapolate like they did the flu? Answer: because it would show that covid 19 is NOT more virulent than the common flu, and there are a LOT more cases than we are being told (#’s of infected withheld?) They KNOW the #’s from China, to the size of the city to the reported dates (gestation), and they KNOW the amount decesased AND infected. If you do not trust China, how about South Korea? They have ACCURATE info, and it is MUCH less than reported.

In short my friend, we are being BAIT AND SWITCHED on the numbers to create PANIC.

EX a: estimated # of flu infected vs ACTUAL mortality to get .1% mortality

Ex b: Actual #of known infected vs ACTUAL mortality to get 3.4- 3.8%.

These two are NOT like comparisons, not even CLOSE, and it is IMPORTANT to see that they are using actuals vs ESTIMATED to get the higher numbers. IE comparing apples to apples in covid 19, and apples to ORANGES in the flu.

The question is WHY can they not extrapolate the numbers in covid 19 like they do with the flu?

Answer, they do not want a panic over the flu, it is something people are USED to, has been around, and therefore even with the TRUE number, would not panic.

Covid 19 is NEW, and “unknown” and can be used to spread the panic desired. When one factors in the avg age of infections, serious infections for BOTH, and the factors in that 8 of 10 in covid show mild to NO symptoms, you start to REALLY see the agenda.

We are being MANIPULATED, folks.

Then he rightly pointed the finger at leftist mayors and governors in the United States:

We are being manipulated, and leftist mayors and Governors are doing what they ALWAYS do, overreach. They are closing restaurants and bars, and now daycares..WHY? children are basically NOT affected. Answer because this is a TEST, a TEST of just what they can get away with before we the people say ENOUGH.

Time for some lawsuits, testing the Constitutionality of this. Then, the states and cities would have to PROVE actual danger, NOT projections. I hope you see now why I so vehemently went against the exponential projections, I KNEW they would be used against us for an AGENDA, damned if I wasn’t right.

The left will CONTINUE to infringe, and spread panic, till something pops, it will not take long, I give it 3 weeks TOPS. Hopefully, there will be enough SANE people, and Trump, to put a STOP to this through pushback. Plus, I believe they CANNOT keep up the hoax, and, yes, folks, it is a HOAX because of its PURPOSE, for much longer, they will NOT be able to fool the people much longer and fuel the hysteria. People will soon see, that they nor NO ONE they know is infected, and THEN the pushback starts.

The virus is real, but it is being made into the Spanish flu, and it is NOWHERE near that. May God have mercy on us all if a REAL killer comes a calling after this FIASCO by the MSM.

I IMPLORE President Trump, please for the love of the country, RESCIND the Obama EO that permits propaganda to be spewed. FORCE these people to report the TRUTH and NOTHING but the truth, and that includes lying by omission.

Many people are just now coming to where I have been for over 2 weeks, pissed off, and it will get MUCH worse if they do not quit openly LYING and spreading hysteria, let alone infringement of life, LIBERTY, and the pursuit of happiness. All in the name of a crisis, and “public health”. My considerable rear end. The numbers do NOT bear out the reaction.

EX A. 69 deaths of 330000000 =.000000020990 %
EX B 3300 cases of 3300000000= .00001%

Now tell me again why we are in lockdown and PANIC?

Projections and exponential projections coupled with HYPE. Nothing more. These are FACTS, not projections.

I fully agree more with those sentiments. I hope that you do, too.

Prex has more on his site in ‘Corona-steria’.

We have never seen anything like this in living memory.

Based on what Prex and SteveInCO say, governmental response has been over the top.

When all is said and done, outside of China, Iran and Italy, it is likely that less than 1% of various nations’ populations will have died.

Meanwhile, every year, there are tens of thousands of deaths from influenza and respiratory illnesses in each Western country every year. On average, 1%-10% of populations die in each of those countries from those ailments. The percentage varies among countries. In England, it is around 1%.

Then, let’s talk about the much higher percentage rates of death from heart disease, diabetes, obesity and the like.

Yet, our leaders are obsessing over coronavirus?

I do not know how much people can push back on this at the moment. However, if you are healthy and your government allows it, keep patronising local shops and restaurants. Otherwise, they will go under. That would be very bad for the owners, their employees — and the economy.

Just keep in mind what is happening right now, because this is not the last pandemic we will ever see. Far from it. And, what sort of restrictions on freedom of movement will we see then?

The following graphic comes from elsewhere on WordPress, but it is a timely reminder from the Book of Revelation about those headed for damnation.

‘Who’s Who in Hell’ comes courtesy of K B McGee, and posted elsewhere:

Our first death is our departure from this mortal coil.

The second death is eternal death.

I pray we all avoid it.

George Washington 189px-BlackadderivwordpresscomOn Monday, February 19, 2018 George Washington’s birthday was celebrated as a state holiday in the United States. Wall Street also closed on this day.

America’s first president was born on February 22, 1732 or, as the Julian calendar was still in use in Britain and the colonies, February 11, 1731.

Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809.

When I was a child, each had his own holiday. Some years ago, the two were combined. Some states celebrate both presidents’ birthdays on the third Monday in February. Others honour one of the two. Some states celebrate Presidents(‘) Day at other times of the year.

Last year, my reader sunnydaysall, from BrainHavenNet, posted Dr Christopher’s Herbal Legacy Newsletter from July 7, 2017, ‘The Untimely Death of America’.

It is well worth reading, especially for those interested in natural remedies.

One would have thought that George Washington would have had the finest medical care available. It seems he did in principle, but, judging from his final days, not in practice.

A summary and excerpts follow, emphases mine.

On Thursday, December 12, 1799, Washington was on his Mount Vernon estate and made his daily rounds. He was, as usual, out of the house between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. It was snowing that day and three inches of snow had already accumulated. The former president had helped to move a carriage that day that had been stuck in the snow.

Upon returning home, he felt a sore throat coming on. He was also growing hoarse. However, instead of changing into dry clothes, he sat down to dinner. Afterwards, he remained in his damp attire.

On Friday, he worked on his estate marking trees to be felled. He returned home:

had a pleasant evening and even joked about his worsening hoarseness. Two o’clock Saturday morning he was chilled, could scarcely speak and breathed with difficulty. In the morning a servant was dispatched to retrieve Dr. Craik and another servant was dispatched for a Mr. Rawlins who was a local bleeder. Mr. Rawlins removed a half pint of blood and then Dr. Craik upon arriving removed another pint of blood and dosed the former President with calomel (a mercury preparation). Two more Doctors arrived and yes removed even more blood and administered more mercury, purgative enemas and blistering plasters. A fourth bleeding was proposed and immediately protested by Dr. Elisha Dick the youngest of the three doctors. However, he was overruled by Dr. James Craik and a Dr. Richard Brown who then bled George Washington a fourth time and of course administered another round of mercury and another toxic chemical, antimony. It is estimated that half of his blood had been removed. By today’s standards that much loss of blood would result in extremely low blood pressure and would require an immediate transfusion along with intensive care.

That is incredibly over the top treatment for a bad cold. How President Washington must have suffered. He died on December 14, 1799.

At the time, when nothing else worked, the physicians in those days tried bleeding. Using emetics was also common, but less toxic ones were available. Using antimony and mercury were last resorts, even then. Why did the physicians not try a less dramatic treatment?

Dr Christopher says that the cause of Washington’s death given today is bacterial epiglottis:

and that an emergency tracheotomy would have saved his life.

That also seems pretty extreme.

One of the physicians got in touch with another two weeks later:

Dr. Brown had misgivings and in a letter to Dr. Craik said, “If we had taken no more blood from him, our good friend might have been alive now.” He added, “But we were governed by the best light we had. We thought we were right, and so we are justified.” A contemporary British physician John Reid sarcastically remarked that the “current of blood” drained from George Washington reflected the currents of American rivers. He then was critical of the heavy dosing of mercury and the administrations of emetics and blistering to a man in his late 60’s.

Exactly!

As Dr Christopher points out in his newsletter:

We do know as a fact that herbalists were present in the 1700s and for that matter in all eras. They were sometimes praised and sometimes ignored. We know that herbalists would have used remedies that were simple such as; lemon grass, rose hips, garlic, and onions that could have saved our beloved leader’s life. The emerging Thompsonian doctors could have relaxed the muscles with Lobelia and applied cayenne to the throat to increase circulation. Perhaps the native population could have provided golden seal with its berberine alkaloid that kills bacteria. It is a fact that there was plenty of light and knowledge available in 1799 that could have been used by the Washington family instead of turning to the popular or mainstream doctors of that day with their blood-letting and poisonous practice. At any rate, the sudden agonizing death of George Washington was untimely and a great loss to his family and countrymen.

What a sad Christmas that must have been for the Washington family and their friends. Then there was the population of the new(ish) United States, which also mourned his death. What a miserable end to the year.

I did not know this story and am grateful that Dr Christopher wrote about it and that sunnydaysall posted it.

If this had happened today, I would have said it was a murderous plot. Nowadays, we cannot accept anything as it appears.

Bible and crossThe three-year Lectionary that many Catholics and Protestants hear in public worship gives us a great variety of Holy Scripture.

Yet, it doesn’t tell the whole story.

My series Forbidden Bible Verses — ones the Lectionary editors and their clergy have omitted — examines the passages we do not hear in church. These missing verses are also Essential Bible Verses, ones we should study with care and attention. Often, we find that they carry difficult messages and warnings.

Today’s reading is from the English Standard Version with commentary by Matthew Henry and John MacArthur.

Acts 12:20-23

The Death of Herod

20 Now Herod was angry with the people of Tyre and Sidon, and they came to him with one accord, and having persuaded Blastus, the king’s chamberlain,[a] they asked for peace, because their country depended on the king’s country for food. 21 On an appointed day Herod put on his royal robes, took his seat upon the throne, and delivered an oration to them. 22 And the people were shouting, “The voice of a god, and not of a man!” 23 Immediately an angel of the Lord struck him down, because he did not give God the glory, and he was eaten by worms and breathed his last.

——————————————————————————————-

Last week’s post described Herod Agrippa I’s ire and humiliation over the disappearance of Peter, who makes no more significant appearances in Acts, other than in Chapter 15.

As my post explains, Herod Agrippa I — i.e. his men — searched for Peter but could not find him. Herod then sentenced his 16 guards assigned to Peter to death.

Matthew Henry thought that their sentence was commuted — because of the events in today’s post. John MacArthur says that they did die.

Regardless, my post said that the death penalty was Roman law for a guard who, even inadvertently, allowed a prisoner to escape.

In any event, Herod Agrippa was completely humiliated. He wanted to put Peter on stage for a kangaroo trial and bloody death after Passover that year. He had already had the apostle James — St James the Great — beheaded in a more low-key way. Peter was to be the great public spectacle, akin to Jesus before the Crucifixion.

However, God foiled Herod’s evil plan for Peter at every stage.

And God wasn’t finished yet.

As I wrote last week, after Herod was humiliated, he left Judea for Caesarea, where he staged lavish performances praising Caesar, who had just returned from a triumphant trip to Britain. He was surrounded by the great and the good of the day. They went to sponge off Herod, enjoying his hospitality. They went to honour Caesar, not Herod.

Herod Agrippa was saturated with sin. Not only was he angry with the most devout followers of Christ, he was also infuriated by others, as Matthew Henry’s commentary tells us, possibly for trivial reasons.

In verse 20, we discover that he was angry with the people of two ancient cities, Tyre and Sidon. Those cities appear occasionally in both the Old and New Testaments. In 2015, I wrote about Matthew 11:20-24, saying that Sidon was a Phoenecian port city, first mentioned in Genesis 10. The Egyptians sent their wheat to Sidon. From there, ships sent the wheat to Mediterranean ports. Tyre was a nearby fortified city, mentioned in Judges 19. It provided the cedars of Lebanon for Solomon’s temple. The two cities were — not surprisingly — steeped in idolatry, corruption and vice. This is why Jesus’s comment about the two cities — a judgment against the Jews of his time — was such a stinging curse (i.e. ‘Woe to you’):

21 “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I tell you, it will be more bearable on the day of judgment for Tyre and Sidon than for you.

Also see the parallel in Luke 10:13-15, with more about the two cities.

MacArthur explains that, at the time of Herod Agrippa, who was their king for all intents and purposes:

Tyre and Sidon are two free cities north of Caesarea. Caesarea is right on the Mediterranean Sea west of Jerusalem. And up north in Syria, north of Galilee is Tyre and Sidon, coastal cities, free cities, technically belonging to Syria. They were the neighbors of Galilee and of Herod’s territory, so there was a necessary interdependence.

That interdependence had to do with foodstuffs passing through those cities. Both depended on food from Galilee. Tyre and Sidon did not produce their own, as they traded.

MacArthur tells us:

Herod was mad. Maybe he didn’t like the duties or the tariffs that Tyre and Sidon were charging him for his movement of materials. So he got mad at them and he cut off all supplies and they were hurting badly. Herod was very angry and when Tyre and Sidon couldn’t get the food they needed and the supply they needed from Galilee and Israel they were in trouble. And so they knew they needed to make a treaty with Herod.

The people of Tyre and Sidon made an ally out of a man named Blastus, the king’s chamberlain — his trusted attendant or treasurer — who acted as their intermediary. Henry wrote that they likely used bribes.

In any event, they asked for peace, because they were in danger of going hungry.

Herod agreed a date to speak to them. This was a situation he must have relished: having two powerful ports — comparable to city states — being forced to grovel at his feet.

Herod made sure he donned his most royal robes, looked majestic on his throne and delivered an oration to them (verse 21). He milked this for all it was worth. MacArthur says:

He decided that the whole world would know how super he was, how great he was, and watch these two nations bow at his feet, these two cities.

MacArthur adds that all the great and the good who saw the performances lauding Caesar were likely to have been in attendance. The performances had taken place the day before.

Henry agrees with MacArthur that the Jewish historian Josephus also wrote about this event (emphases mine):

he had all the mucky mucks and the leaders all arriving in Caesarea and they met in the amphitheatre that had been built by his grandfather, Herod the Great. I was in that place where that is, big massive amphitheatre and there he had his big throne and all the people were sitting around cheer upon cheer cheering people and he comes out splendid in his royal apparel and Josephus said he had a silver robe on, made of silver. And the sun just came and splattered off of that thing and he just looked resplend[ent] in all of his glory, which is just what he wanted. He was going to get out there and sit in his throne and the cheering people, and he was going to watch all the Tyre and Sidon people bowing down to him and … eat up every second of it. This was day one, the tip of the hat to Caesar, day two my day, see. So he got day one out of the way and the second day comes in his silver robe and he’s the glory of man at its pinnacle. All the Rome pomp and circumstances there, the soldiers, the whole shot, everything is set up and all the little mealy mouth favor seekers are sitting in the chairs cheering, crowds lining everywhere.

This was a big deal. If this were to happen today, it would have been discussed for days on all the cable news channels, on Internet sites, tweeted about and hyped beyond reason. It would have been in all the newspapers and analysed endlessly. It would have been filmed live as a great televisual showdown.

So, duly puffed up with himself, Herod Agrippa gave an oration. Henry paints the picture for us:

He made a speech to the men of Tyre and Sidon, a fine oration, in which, probably, after he had aggravated their fault, and commended their submission, he concluded with an assurance that he would pass by their offence and receive them into his favour again–proud enough that he had it in his power whom he would to keep alive, as well as whom he would to slay; and probably he kept them in suspense as to what their doom should be, till he made this oration to them, that the act of grace might come to them with the more pleasing surprise.

If that had occurred today, there would have been a lengthy commercial break between oration and conclusion of perceived mercy.

Amazingly, those who heard the oration — and, frankly, this isn’t too different to our times — pronounced the ‘voice of a god, and not of man’ (verse 22).

Immediately, an angel of the Lord struck him down. He breathed his last, but not before being eaten by worms (verse 23).

N.B.: Herod Agrippa was sentenced to death by worms. Those worms did not eat him in his grave. They ate him alive. We all know how hideous maggots and grubs are. Imagine being eaten by them. Talk about a spectacle. That was God’s — and Jesus Christ’s — message to him, those watching and us.

Henry analyses this for us, including Herod’s quasi-Judaism:

his fault was that he said nothing, did not rebuke their flattery, nor disown the title they had given him, nor give God the glory (Acts 12:23); but he took it to himself, was very willing it should terminate in himself, and that he should be thought a god and have divine honours paid him. Si populus vult decipi, decipiatur–if the people will be deceived, let them. And it was worse in him who was a Jew, and professed to believe in one God only, than it was in the heathen emperors, who had gods many and lords many.

This brings us back to Jesus’s curse on Chorazin and Bethsaida cited above. If we know and ignore God’s will and Christ Jesus, we will surely perish.

We cannot know God unless we truly believe that Jesus Christ is our Lord and Saviour.

As Henry explains:

Now he was reckoned with for vexing the church of Christ, killing James, imprisoning Peter, and all the other mischiefs he had done.

Also:

The angel smote him with a sore disease just at that instant when he was strutting at the applauses of the people, and adoring his own shadow. Thus the king of Tyre said in his pride, I am a god, I sit in the seat of God; and set his heart as the heart of God; but he shall be a man, and no God, a weak mortal man, in the hand of him that slayeth him (Ezekiel 28:2-9), so Herod here. Potent princes must know, not only that God is omnipotent, but that angels also are greater in power and might than they. The angel smote him, because he gave not the glory to God; angels are jealous for God’s honour, and as soon as ever they have commission are ready to smite those that usurp his prerogatives, and rob God of his honour.

Henry adds the following for his audience, as the microscope was in its infancy then. His words are also pertinent for us today, four centuries later:

Surprising discoveries have of late been made by microscopes of the multitude of worms that there are in human bodies, and how much they contribute to the diseases of them, which is a good reason why we should not be proud of our bodies, or of any of their accomplishments, and why we should not pamper our bodies, for this is but feeding the worms, and feeding them for the worms.

Yes! A thousand times yes!

Of the worms, MacArthur tells us:

Josephus says they ate him for five days before he died. That’s a sickening debasing terrible way to die. Just when a man thinks he has exalted himself to the place of glory God crushes him to a place of humility. And I say to you, you can’t fight God because his power can’t be contested and His punishment can’t be avoided. Don’t fight God. He was painfully smitten. The pompous fool done in by worms.

God will never be defeated by unbelievers or mockers.

Next time — Acts 12:24-25

Bible read me 1The three-year Lectionary that many Catholics and Protestants hear in public worship gives us a great variety of Holy Scripture.

Yet, it doesn’t tell the whole story.

My series Forbidden Bible Verses — ones the Lectionary editors and their clergy omit — examines the passages we do not hear in church. These missing verses are also Essential Bible Verses, ones we should study with care and attention. Often, we find that they carry difficult messages and warnings.

Today’s reading is from the English Standard Version with commentary by Matthew Henry and John MacArthur.

Acts 5:7-11

After an interval of about three hours his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. And Peter said to her, “Tell me whether you[a] sold the land for so much.” And she said, “Yes, for so much.” But Peter said to her, “How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord? Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out.” 10 Immediately she fell down at his feet and breathed her last. When the young men came in they found her dead, and they carried her out and buried her beside her husband. 11 And great fear came upon the whole church and upon all who heard of these things.

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Last week’s post concerned the first part of this shocking episode: Ananias’s death, a sentence God carried out through Peter for deceiving Him and the Holy Spirit.

If you haven’t already read it, I strongly recommend doing so, because it concerns the sometimes fatal folly of humans trying to pull one over on the Holy Trinity. Not recommended. In the case of Ananias, it was his sin unto death: the last one before God decides to pull the plug on someone’s life in cases of egregious offence.

Acts 5:6 tells us that young men wrapped up Ananias’s body and carried it out — implying out of the city — for burial. Matthew Henry explains that they:

buried it decently, though he died in sin, and by an immediate stroke of divine vengeance.

Three hours later after the death of Ananias, Sapphira, his wife, walked in (verse 7). She did not know what happened nor that Peter, the Apostles and others present knew the two had consciously not given all the money from their property sale to the congregation. They kept some back for themselves.

Given those circumstances, both our commentators surmise that she thought she was in for a lot of love, given the donation. She was, in John MacArthur’s estimation:

expecting to get in on the laurels.

Henry tells us that all this took place at Solomon’s Porch of the temple in Jerusalem, because the next few verses took place there, the subject of next week’s entry about the signs and wonders done.

He thought that the original idea came from Sapphira herself:

perhaps … first in the transgression, and tempted her husband to eat this forbidden fruit.

Peter confronted her about the amount of money from the property sale. She agreed with what he said (verse 8) and, therefore, lied to him. He then asked her a question similar to the one he posed to Ananias (verse 9). How could the two of them have agreed to test the Holy Spirit? He then told her that the men who buried her husband were ready to take her body, too!

Henry explains the couple’s thought process (emphases mine):

Ananias and his wife agreed to tell the same story, and the bargain being private, and by consent kept to themselves, nobody could disprove them, and therefore they thought they might safely stand in the lie, and should gain credit to it. It is sad to see those relations who should quicken one another to that which is good harden one another in that which is evil …

That they agreed together to do it, making the bond of their relation to each other (which by the divine institution is a sacred tie) to become a bond of iniquity. It is hard to say which is worse between yoke-fellows and other relations–a discord in good or concord in evil.

Peter made sure that, before Sapphira breathed her last, she was aware of her sin — testing the Holy Spirit:

It seems to intimate that their agreeing together to do it was a further tempting of the Spirit; as if, when they had engaged to keep one another’s counsel in this matter, even the Spirit of the Lord himself could not discover them. Thus they digged deep to hide their counsel from the Lord, but were made to know it is in vain. “How is it that you are thus infatuated? What strange stupidity has seized you, that you would venture to make trial of that which is past dispute? How is it that you, who are baptized Christians, do not understand yourselves better? How durst you run so great a risk?”

Henry gives us examples from the Old Testament where people tested God:

That they tempted the Spirit of the Lord; as Israel tempted God in the desert, when they said, Is the Lord among us, or is he not? after they had seen so many miraculous proofs of his power; and not only his presence, but his presidency, when they said, Can God furnish a table? So here, “Can the Spirit in the apostles discover this fraud? Can they discern that this is but a part of the price, when we tell them it is the whole?” Can he judge through this dark cloud? Job 22:13. They saw that the apostles had the gift of tongues; but had they the gift of discerning spirits? Those that presume upon security and impunity in sin tempt the Spirit of God; they tempt God as if he were altogether such a one as themselves.

As soon as Peter made Sapphira aware of her sin, she dropped dead at his feet (verse 10). It could be a combination of being found out and the sudden knowledge that her husband dropped dead was too much for her. All this, in Henry’s words:

struck her as a thunderbolt and took her away as with a whirlwind.

The Holy Spirit was working powerfully through Peter, giving him the discernment, the right words to say and the most effective delivery.

Henry advises us not to consider every sudden death as being divine punishment:

We must not think that all who die suddenly are sinners above others; perhaps it is in favour to them, that they have a quick passage: however, it is forewarning to all to be always ready. But here it is plain that it was in judgment.

He also does not think they were eternally saved, either:

Some put the question concerning the eternal state of Ananias and Sapphira, and incline to think that the destruction of the flesh was that the spirit might be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. And I should go in with that charitable opinion if there had been any space given them to repent, as there was to the incestuous Corinthian. But secret things belong not to us. It is said, She fell down at Peter’s feet; there, where she should have laid the whole price and did not, she was herself laid, as it were to make up the deficiency.

The young men, having just returned, came in to remove her body to bury it beside her husband’s. Henry points out:

it is not said, They wound her up, as they did Ananias, but, They carried her out as she was, and buried her by her husband; and probably an inscription was set over their graves, intimating that they were joint-monuments of divine wrath against those that lie to the Holy Ghost.

Not surprisingly, those who learned of these deaths from attempting to deceive God and the Holy Spirit were struck with ‘great fear’ (verse 11).

This whole event really should be in the three-year Lectionary. If it scares people — the clergy’s great and near-universal fear — so much the better!

We in the West have such a blessing of creature comforts that we have forgotten the wrath of God! Woe betide us!

MacArthur says:

Oh, there are lessons here, what are they? God hates sin. Especi­ally sins in Christians’ lives. Second, God punishes sin. I Peter 4:17, says Judgement must begin at the house of God. And if God cares about the sins of the saints that much and punishes them that stringent­ly, I say to you who are unbelievers, beware of the judgement of God upon you. And so we see lessons, powerful, speaking to our hearts.

Some will wonder whether the Apostles kept the money that Ananias brought them. Henry thought so:

I am apt to think they did … What they brought was not polluted to those to whom they brought it; but what they kept back was polluted to those that kept it back.

The tone of Acts 5 changes in the verses that follow and we return to the glorious wonders that the Holy Spirit made possible in the earliest days of the Apostolic Era.

Next time: Acts 5:12-16

Bible read me 2The three-year Lectionary that many Catholics and Protestants hear in public worship gives us a great variety of Holy Scripture.

Yet, it doesn’t tell the whole story.

My series Forbidden Bible Verses — ones the Lectionary editors and their clergy omit — examines the passages we do not hear in church. These missing verses are also Essential Bible Verses, ones we should study with care and attention. Often, we find that they carry difficult messages and warnings.

Today’s reading is from the English Standard Version with commentary by Matthew Henry and John MacArthur.

Acts 5:1-6

Ananias and Sapphira

But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property, and with his wife’s knowledge he kept back for himself some of the proceeds and brought only a part of it and laid it at the apostles’ feet. But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back for yourself part of the proceeds of the land? While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not at your disposal? Why is it that you have contrived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to man but to God.” When Ananias heard these words, he fell down and breathed his last. And great fear came upon all who heard of it. The young men rose and wrapped him up and carried him out and buried him.

———————————————————————————————–

The story of Ananias and Sapphira is one of the most dramatic and instructive in the New Testament with regard to Christian living.

In last week’s post, I cited the final verses of Acts 4, which concluded a description of the generous spirit of giving among the new Christians, filled with the Holy Spirit on and after the first Pentecost. No one was in need or want.

Those who could do so volunteered to sell property and give the proceeds to the disciples to be used for the benefit of the quickly growing community of converts, which, thanks to Peter’s bold evangelism, probably exceeded 20,000 at this point. Scripture gives us the numbers of men. John MacArthur asks us to add on extra for women and children.

Acts 4 ends with this:

36 Thus Joseph, who was also called by the apostles Barnabas (which means son of encouragement), a Levite, a native of Cyprus, 37 sold a field that belonged to him and brought the money and laid it at the apostles’ feet.

Of this gentleman, MacArthur says (emphases mine):

Now Joseph was, verse 36, by the apostles nicknamed or surnamed Barnabas. Now Barnabas means the son of consolation, encouragement or exhortation. Apparently Barnabas or Joseph had the gift of exhortation, so they just called him, son of exhortation. And he plays an important part. You remember Barnabas was the man who accompanied the apostle Paul later on in his first miss­ionary journey. Barnabas in chapter 11 verses 22 and following is giv­ing a little counsel, and it’s kinda a beautiful thing to see. Apparent­ly a beloved fellow, you remember he and Paul had a little falling out over John Mark and they parted ways, ’cause Barnabas was such a loving soul, he just couldn’t give up on John Mark. So apparently he was a very dear, a very precious man, and so here he is, his name is Barnabas and he was a Levite and that’s interesting because the Levites were the priestly family, they couldn’t own any property. You say, well how did he get this property? Well, I think it’s another indication that the Old Covenant had passed away. The Old Covenant passing away, then freed the Levites from the bondage of the old law, and he had the right then to own property. And so apparently he’s purchased this, now if he was a Levite he wouldn’t be very wealthy ’cause a priest didn’t make any money, they pretty much lived off of what other people supplied them. And so this was a big thing to him and perhaps he had saved and scrimped and all the way along to be able to have this. He was from the country of Cyprus. Well it says in 37, “Having land, he sold it, and he brought the money, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.” Isn’t that interesting? That was something that probably was his whole lifetime investment, if any history of the Levites is any indic­ation. And he sold it and just said here, you do with what you want.

That brings us to today’s verses. Note that verse 1 begins with ‘but’. Think in terms of ‘however’, signifying something of an opposite nature to come. Matthew Henry explains:

The chapter begins with a melancholy but, which puts a stop to the pleasant and agreeable prospect of things which we had in the foregoing chapters; as every man, so every church, in its best state has its but.

We discover that Ananias and his wife Sapphira sold a piece of property. Furthermore, both husband and wife knew that Ananias was going to withhold some of the proceeds for themselves (verse 2).

When Ananias brought the portion of the proceeds for the apostles to do with as they saw fit, Peter asked why he lied to the Holy Spirit because his heart was now filled with Satan (verse 3).

Both MacArthur and Henry say that the couple wanted to appear to be as good as Barnabas. It seemed they thought they were on to a win-win situation — a deceptive one. They pledged to the apostles they would donate all the proceeds but knew from the start they would hold some back for themselves. No one would ever know, right?

Henry contrasts the rich young man who encountered Jesus and this couple:

It was commendable, and so far it was right, in that rich young man, that he would not pretend to follow Christ, when, if it should come to a pinch, he knew he could not come up to his terms, but he went away sorrowful. Ananias and Sapphira pretended they could come up to the terms, that they might have the credit of being disciples, when really they could not, and so were a discredit to discipleship.

MacArthur describes what probably happened before the sale:

You see, they had vowed to the Holy Spirit and publicly in front of the congregation that they were going to sell this thing and give it all to the Lord. That was the physical action; it was a lie, they lied to God and to men, and ah, that’s really what Peter says at the end of verse 4, is that you didn’t only lie to men, but you lied to God. So they just put a big lie on. That was really the physical act sin, but behind every physical act sin, watch this, is a mental attitude sin, and the mental attitude sin was, was the secret sin, you know like Lewis Sperry Chafer says, secret sin on earth is open scandal in heaven. They thought they were sneaky. And the mental attitude sin was this, hypocrisy based on a desire for spiritual status. I’ll say it again, hypocrisy based on a desire for spiritual status. You see they wanted to be elevated in the minds of everybody else, spiritually, they wanted everybody to think they were super spiritual. And they believed that they would be applau­ded for sacrifice and they could save a little cash at the same time.

By the way, Ananias is alone before Peter. (We’ll get to Sapphira next week.)

Peter asked Ananias why he contrived in his heart to lie — not to man but to God (verse 4). Henry says that the Holy Spirit drove Peter to this truth and to say it aloud:

The Spirit of God in Peter not only discovered the fact without any information (when perhaps no man in the world knew it but the man and his wife themselves), but likewise discerned the principle of reigning infidelity in the heart of Ananias, which was at the bottom of it, and therefore proceeded against him so suddenly.

Some may ask if Ananias changed his mind after making the sale. Henry surmised that if such were the case:

Peter would have taken Ananias aside, and have bidden him go home, and fetch the rest of the money, and repent of his folly in attempting to put this cheat upon them …

However:

he knew that his heart was fully set in him to do this evil, and therefore allowed him not space to repent.

Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, could discern that Satan had entered Ananias and could corrupt the new, fledgling set of Christians. MacArthur explains:

Hypocrisy was the dirty sin, hypocrisy was the mental attitude sin, the core sin, creating the impression they were giving all, and they were really pious, and they were really spiritual. And dear ones, this is Satan’s initial move to the inside, to corrupt the church, the sin of hypocrisy among Christians.

Peter’s words were true, because when Ananias heard them, he dropped dead (verse 5). Furthermore, those who heard of what happened were struck with ‘great fear’.

Peter convicted Ananias of lying to the Holy Spirit (verse 3) and of lying to God (verse 4).

Ananias received divine judgement — death sentence — for his grave sins.

MacArthur says:

You say, how did he die? I’ll tell ya how he died. He died by judicial act of God’s judgement. You say, well what were the physical causes? I think the shock of the whole thing just stopped his heart, right then. I think his conscience was so struck with the horror of what Peter had just said that he just stopped living.

Had Ananias received the Holy Spirit previously? Henry thought it possible:

1. … Some think that Ananias was one of those that had received the Holy Ghost, and was filled with his gifts, but, having provoked the Spirit to withdraw from him, now Satan filled his heart; as, when the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, an evil spirit from God troubled him. Satan is a lying spirit; he was so in the mouth of Ahab’s prophets, and so he was in the mouth of Ananias, and by this made it appear that he filled his heart.

2. The sin itself: He lied to the Holy Ghost; a sin of such a heinous nature that he could not have been guilty of it if Satan had not filled his heart.

Some will wonder if this really took place. MacArthur gives us an example from English history:

English history records for us the account of the Dean of Saint Paul’s who went in to see Edward [I], and Edward [I] was so mad, he looked at him with a glare that struck him so hard that he fell over dead. Now if Edward [I] can do that, I think God can do it

Therefore:

I think God just brought to the attention of Ananias such a flagrant, blatant act of sin at such a shocking moment of time and he was so discovered, that instead of having to go out and kill himself, he just stopped his heart, dead. In sheer fear and terror.

MacArthur cites other examples in the New Testament whereby God takes people out when they are sinning against Him egregiously. I have broken these up into separate paragraphs so that we all can read them more easily:

Does God actually kill Christians? Yes, He does. Not always though, but He does. You say, you mean that God would actually take the life of a Christian? Yes. You say, What gives you belief in that? I’ll tell you, it’s simple; it’s right in the Word of God. And if the Bible says it, I believe it, and as somebody said, that settles it. [I] Corinthians 11, and you listen well, talking about communion, the Lord’s Table, “He that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgement to himself.” You come to the table of the Lord as a Christian and your heart’s not pure, you’re com­ing and you’re going to eat and you’re going to do it unworthily, unless your heart is clean and there’s no open sin in your life. Listen, he says some of you are doing this and, “For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.” … actually taken the lives of some of you Corinthians because of the way you come to the Lord’s Table.

Let me give you another one. It’s [I] John 5:16 says this, “If any man sees his brother (Christian) sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death; I do not say that he shall pray for it.” You say, what is the sin unto death? It’s that last sin that a sinning believer commits when God says, that’s it, I’ve had it, you’re comin’ home. It’s the straw that broke the camel’s back, and sometimes a Christian lives in sin, and God finally just says, I’m sorry, that’s all, and takes him outta the world. That’s ultimate discipline.

Let me show you one other passage, maybe you never thought of it in this light, but I read it to you in this light. James 1:18, “Of His own will begot He us (he says) with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of first fruits of His creatures.” God begot us, to be a living example to the world of what His creatures oughta be, you see? We’re to be examples, that’s why He saved us and left us here, now watch, verse 21, well verse 19, let’s go right through it, “Wherefore, my beloved brethren, (now to whom is he speaking when he uses those words, Christians or non-Christians? Christians, he says my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, and slow to speak, and slow to wrath; For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. (listen) Wherefore, (here you are beloved brethren, God has called you to be examples, so do this) put away filthiness overflowing of wickedness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.” Do Christians need to do something to have their souls saved? No, that’s a problem isn’t it? It’s not a problem if you understand the Greek word for “souls” is also the word for lives. You know what he’s saying? Put the wickedness out of your life, put the filthiness out of your life, receive the Word, or you’ll die. That’s what he’s saying. That’s how strong God spoke in the early church. If you want to save your lives, ya better get into the Word and put away the filthiness. Now that’s serious stuff.

God will not be mocked.

Atheists do not have a get-out clause by saying, ‘Well, I don’t believe in God. I’m okay.’ No, they are not ‘okay’. Divine judgement concerns everyone.

Verse 6 tells us that Ananias’s corpse was wrapped up and the young men removed it from the congregation to bury it.

MacArthur says they took him out of the city for burial.

To be continued next week.

This really should be in the three-year Lectionary. Can’t you just imagine theologians and clergy saying, ‘Well, we don’t want to scare anyone off’?

Christians have it too easy these days. We ignore or rationalise the hard truths of Holy Scripture because ‘they’re not nice’.

I would suggest that if clergy actually preached from the Bible as John MacArthur does, our mainline denomination churches would have the attendance they did in the 20th century. It sounds paradoxical, but MacArthur proves my case with his huge congregation. No church growth malarkey for him, just the word of God.

Next time: Acts 5:7-11

 

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