Beware of the cult of the Black Hebrew Israelites

There’s a lot of cults on London where I live.

I’ve seen the Hari Krishnas, The Moonies, Falong Gong, Scientologists, evangelical Islamists telling us we need Shariah law and also one or two self style Messiah figures, around the streets of London.

In Israel, the Falong Gong, Hari Krishnas and Scientologists are there too, and a few other weird ones.

So when some folks tell me all religion is the same and there is a select bad bunch of a few, I tend to roll my eyes and shake my head.   Its no surprise that Paul spoke about it a lot, as did Peter, and Jesus said himself, there would be false Messiahs, false prophets and false religions would deceive people.   In this particular time and age stuff like this is increasing.  The Black Hebrew Israelites are some of the very worst groups I think around.   They are racist and stir up hate.

I first so these folks actually in Oxford Street in London.   They might seems like a limited fringe group, but they seem extremely active on the internet and they seem to be growing.  Among forums and Facebook groups, they seem to pop up quite often.

On the surface, BHI appear to be just some young black men who love the bible and have an interest in Israel and Jewish people and practices.

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‘Teaching material’put in front of these men.   Not my foot, a few people watching seemed quite astonished by them.

 

The group of 5 young black men preaching in Oxford Street had a cartoon showing that Jesus was a black man, and that traditional Christianity is worshiping an imposter.

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I didn’t get a closer picture of these guys for obvious reasons.  They are bigger then me and crazy.

I’m trying to help and encourage a friend who has got into very similar teaching to this.  Let me tell you this.   I am going to no mince words here, this teaching is a lie from the pit of hell that breaks families, churches and communities.   If you ever see folks from this teaching in your congregation or bible study remove them straight away and pray for protection on you and your family.

When you delve into their teaching they think that they are a lost tribe of Israel, or, and heard this quite a few times that ordinary Ashkenazi (white European Jews) are imposters, and that they should be the ones living in Jerusalem.  They also read out a passage from Revelation 3:9 to reinforce this.    They are driven by extreme arrogance and pride, I think they could easily turn nasty.

Some of these people are frequent speakers in London, one of these is close to Stratford station and some are in cult/weirdo-magnet ‘Speaker’s Corner’ in Hyde Park.

There are real black Jews of course.  BHI is nothing to do with them.    I’ve met many of the Ethiopian Jews in Israel, and be to some bars and restaurants owned by them.  They are kind and gentle people.

Introducing Miqedem, new Messianic music from Israel

migdem

Really enjoying this new album by Miqedem, a new bad from Israel, featuring the former worship leader Jamie Hilsden from my old church, Israel’s largest congregation King of Kings Jerusalem.

This is an entirely Hebrew album, with traditional Middle East/Israel style sound with one song with Arabic style melody.

This is well worth spending $7 on the download.

https://miqedem.bandcamp.com/releases
http://www.miqedem.net/

 

No, the bible doesn’t teach the world is flat

I heard from two people I know that some Christians were following some really peculiar teaching that the world is flat.  This sounds silly but this odd idea have been growing in popularity recently.   Flat Earth followers consider the world to be a flat disc and that the sun and planets revolve around us.

Here’s some examples of the Old Testament (I’ve used the NIV here, some bits but not all look more sensible actually in KJV) that Flat Earth people might use to justify this weird idea;

Ezekiel 7:2 2 “Son of man, this is what the Sovereign Lord says to the land of Israel:
“‘The end! The end has come upon the four corners of the land!

Jeremiah 25:32 This is what the Lord Almighty says: “Look! Disaster is spreading from nation to nation; a mighty storm is rising from the ends of the earth.”

Job 37:3 He unleashes his lightning beneath the whole heaven and sends it to the ends of the earth.

If you look up these links for Ezekiel, Jeremiah and Job you can see the word אָֽרֶץ (Eretz or H’aretz, land or the land)

The word Eretz is used a lot in Judaism, its used in the blessing of the bread that traditional Jews do on Shabbat.


Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech Ha’Olam Hamotzi lechem min haaretz.
Blessed are You, L-rd our G‑d, King of the Universe, Who brings forth bread from the earth.

Israel has always been known as Eretz Israel (Land of Israel) too.   There is even a newspaper in Isrel caled Ha’aretz.   (The Land)

We know from the Hebrew language this word is a little ambiguous.  The word can be the ‘world’ or it can mean the ‘land’

Meanwhile, in the New Testament, here is a wonderful message of Jesus to his followers:-

Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.

Lets now look at the Greek here:  You can see the Greek word: γῆς (pronounced “ge”)

Strong’s Greek shows just like the Hebrew, this word can also have two meaning.   Land and Earth.

So what the bible is telling us the corners of the earth, are the corners of the continents of the earth.

For people to think that space agencies are lying and the world is a flat disc or square with Antarctica is a radial edge, and that the bible is supposed to say so, only makes look a bit silly.

Science and the bible do work together very nicely!

Great teaching from Derek Prince on spiritual gifts

This is a long but great teaching.   There several other parts afterwards.

In the last few years I’ve come across situations where I need to pray in a different language (gift of tongues) over a dangerous situation.  I’m still fairly new to this, and my current regular church doesn’t speak on it.  In the past I’ve been put off by other teachings on this subject.

Derek Prince is one of the best teachers on this and this is great resource for ordinary Christians looking to move forward in their spiritual life, not just for those in academia or theology circles.

I find it best to copy this to your iPod or other MP3 player using something like convert2mp3.net and listen on a bus ride as I have done.

 

Peace monuments in Israel part 2

 This is an old article I wrote in 2012 whilst in Israel, which I never finished, not previously released.   Here is Part 1.

After meeting up with and chatting to a gent who commented on my previous blog post about Peace monuments, here is another selection of gifts from foreign nations have had as well intended but often headscratchingly worthless items that are put on street corners. As I mentioned before, Jesus talks about ‘false peace’  and its true to say there are plenty of examples of this. Here’s one over the West Bank:

Some well meaning people in Italy gave this monument to the Palestinian people in Bethlehem.   Think they could of got someone to do a better poem than this.  This artwork reminds me of all those tacky digital countdown clocks that were in pubs in the UK in 1999, did they all go in the bin I guess?

bell

This bell comes from Japan! Its in Gan Sacher Park, Jerusalem. Here is another not so legal way of trying to get peace: This poster was in a sleezy looking street in downtown Tel Aviv.  I did see before certain types of drugs that promote a legal high, that are yet to be outlawed, and that exact impacts of health and not yet known.

Back when I last visited my home city of Portsmouth, UK, there is this: A traditional style church, next to it is a large mosque that used to be a bingo hall and previously a cinema.   This new Peace design in English and Arabic on the wall seems quite eye catching.   However, I don’t really see peace in Islam, but I do know that Jesus loves the Muslim people and wants them to find him as Lord and savior.   There are a few believers in Portsmouth too who left Islam behind.

For a while now, I have had an urge to pray for Asian and Arab people in Portsmouth who peace, fulfillment and eternal life are only found in Christ, this serves as a good reminder for me to do this.

Strange subtle antisemitism in fruit and veg shop in London

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Ok what’s weird about this picture?

I’m sure the shop I went past during my lunch break near Camden Town in London didn’t notice.   This particular company selling fruit, in this case nectarines (which were very nice, as I did buy one)   The box is marked “Gog and Magog”

Ezekiel 38 : 1 The word of the Lord came to me: 2 “Son of man, set your face against Gog, of the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshek and Tubal; prophesy against him 3 and say: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am against you, Gog, chief prince of Meshek and Tubal.

Revelation 20 : 7 When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison 8 and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth—Gog and Magog—and to gather them for battle. In number they are like the sand on the seashore.

These are the only two bits of scripture that refer to Gog and Magog.   I’m thinking the Italian company who export their fruit probably consider Israel’s own agriculture to be a big competitor and calling themselves a biblical enemy think it would be hilarious.   It seems sad and quite bad taste.

How the Hebrew language reveals the trinity

Every so often, I see some Christians in some fringe weirdo movement want to deny the trinity.   This seems to happen more often recently.

I hear this same argument from Atheists, Muslims and Jews.   The ideal of the Trinity is hard to fathom, with God being three in one.   The word ‘trinity’ isn’t in the bible they say.  They are right the Trinity isn’t in the bible but the concept is there if you dig deep enough.

In my bible study we were studying Mark and I came across this passage.

Mark 12:36 (New International Version)
David himself, speaking by the Holy Spirit, declared: “‘The Lord said to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand until I put your enemies under your feet.”‘

This is a copy of Psalm 110:1 
Of David. A psalm. The LORD says to my lord: “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.”

The Lord speaks to the Lord!   These are vitally important scriptures to give to someone with this question.

If you look at the Hebrew here:- (you can check yourself on biblehub.com)

לְדָוִ֗ד  מִ֫זְמ֥וֹר  נְאֻ֤ם  יְהוָ֨ה ׀  לַֽאדֹנִ֗י  שֵׁ֥ב  לִֽימִינִ֑י  עַד־  אָשִׁ֥ית  אֹ֝יְבֶ֗יךָ  הֲדֹ֣ם  לְרַגְלֶֽיךָ׃

The letters in blue is Yahweh or Jahovah, the word for the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jaacob.

The letters in purple is Adonai, the actual word for ‘Lord’ in Hebrew.

So we know the doctrine of the Trinity is correct and exists in the Old and New Testaments. Another example of Jesus discretely mentioned before he arrives!

Hillsong church worship songs still attract more to Christ

Hillsong church, the large Australian congregation with satellite churches planted in many other countries is famous for its massively popular worship band.

They are often in the news for different reasons, they lean too much toward prosperity theology gospel despite the fact they are an Australian ministry rather than the US which gave us the “health and wealth” type message common in mega-churches and Christian television.   Also more than a few people are unsure of their teaching and style of church is healthy, particularly as lead pastor Brian Houston said the God of islam was the same as the God of the bible.  Lord forbid!!  Or, it might be using Singapore pastor Joseph Prince as headliner for a high priced ticket event, which Mr Prince says we don’t need forgiveness after sin.   (shudder)

I visited their congregation 2 years ago when I moved to London, visiting with my good friend Warren and two teenage brother and sister eastern European immigrants we got to know there.

I was listening to one of the their more well known tracks “Oceans” which has been played in a huge amount of churches I have seen.

Some Christians have said that Hillsong’s music has over-dominated Christian music and become tired of it.   I can sort of understand this.   I like to worship using contemporary and tradition songs myself.

If we take a fresh look at this song ‘Oceans’  a stellar track from when they were in the peak.

Something I noticed, if you look at the Youtube comments for this track, its hugely exciting and heartwarming to see messages from atheists, fallen away Christians and others saying how this song built them up.   People not attending church in years are asking for prayer!!!   This is massively heartwarming for me.

I don’t know of any other worship music group that can motivate such great responses like this.  I ended up settling in a different church in the end, but today I was happy to see how a band could make such an impact particularly on hurting and lost people.

I couldn’t recommend Hillsongs as congregation but I will certainly still follow and enjoy their worship music and pray they will plant more seeds in the hearts of the lost that are seeking Christ in a fallen and broken world, but I would point people to a more robust church.

Trip to Turkey 24. Tarsus’s fairly small tourist market arcade

During my time at Tarsus, I noticed very few other foreigners visiting, apart from at the waterfall place.   Probably due to:-

1. Not many local people speak English here

2. Due to recent terror attacks in Turkey (back then just Istanbul and Ankara) visitors are not in big number.

3. Tarsus has never been well marketed as a tourist place anyway, despite being an birth place for an important man who traveled spreading the gospel who was once opposed to it and killed someone previously.   The Christian places could be better represented and some tour groups done, although this is a 99% Muslim country.

tarsus arcade

This nice little arcade is very pleasant.

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I got one of these Apostle Paul fridge magnets, just 3 TL (75p)

Tarsus is the cheapest place I have ever seen for ice cream, a small corner shop sells different local made ice creams for 1 Turkish Lira (25p)

Previous 23. Paul’s church
Next 25. Museum of Tarsus

 

Spiritual warfare in communities in UK

With various travelling I have done to the Holy Land, and also to Jordan, Morocco and Turkey and other places, other battles can take place in our own home cities.

harrow preachers

This is Harrow in outer London.

Here, I see some people from a local evangelical church, some young black men, very bold confident, speaking out for Christ on a microphone.  One reminds me of my good friend Ashley who I met in Israel but is actually used preaching the gospel in his home town of Watford not far from me.

A few months ago, some Muslims were preaching messages from the Koran and had booklets and teaching.   In other instances they were telling us we need to have Shariah law in the UK. (shudder)

But instead the Hare Krishna movement were there today.   They seems to be in Indian costume but don’t actually look Indian at all, but Europeans dressed up in Asian type clothing with drums and bells, and have new age type books.

At another end of the street was a man dressed up in traditional Buddhist sarong type outfit.

Later on was a a nice band of musicians doing panpipes.  Although the main thing they were selling were Wind Charms, and other American Indian type stuff.   These items are supposed to keep evil spirits away, but actually Native Americans tended to worship their dead ancestors.  I think London has the highest number of cult groups in the world, the spiritual atmosphere is thick here and it can weight heavily on you.

This is my crazy shopping precinct.  This is spiritual warfare in North West London, and I sense it like I have when I have been in the middle east.   Through this I’ve been learning more of praying in tongues.  I’m relative new to this and I don’t do this to draw attention to myself.  A supernatural way of speaking to the Lord in a more urgent way when conventional words may not be enough.

In the past I would try and debate with people, but often some people from false religions will trip you up and tie you in knots as they are trained in deception.   I don’t see these people as the enemy only deceived by false man made bondage religion.   I’m excited that people can be free of this in Christ.

Its easy to worry and get fearful.  The scriptures says “Do not fear” at least 45 times.   39 in the OT and 6 in the NT