Friday Church News Notes
Volume 18, Issue 51 - December 22, 2017
The Friday Church News Notes is designed for use in churches and is published by Way of Life Literature. Unless otherwise stated, the Notes are written by David Cloud. Of necessity we quote from a wide variety of sources, though this does not imply an endorsement.
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Maimonides (Rambam)

LOOKING FOR A MAN OF PEACE AND A SUPREME PROBLEM SOLVER (Friday Church News Notes, December 22, 2017,, 866-295-4143) - In Jewish tradition, the building of the Third Temple is associated with the coming of the Messiah. According to Maimonides (Rambam), the highest rabbinical authority, any Jew that starts rebuilding the temple is a potential Messiah. Shimon ben Kosiba was considered a Messiah in the second century when he led a revolt to recapture Jerusalem and rebuild the temple. He was named Bar Kokhba (“Son of the Star”) based on the Messianic prophecy of Numbers 24:17, and a coin was struck depicting the temple with the ark of the covenant inside and the Messianic star on the roof. By this tradition, it is simple to see how the Antichrist will be looked upon as the Messiah. In an interview in Jerusalem a few years ago, a Reformed Jewish rabbi told us that the Messiah will come when things look really dark and will establish peace and build the temple. A representative of the Temple Institute said the same thing: “We are waiting for a Messiah. In Jewish tradition, we believe that in every generation there is someone who can be the Messiah. The question is who will he be. The answer is only someone who does specific things can be called the Messiah. The one who brings Israel back to Israel. The one who builds the temple again. The one who makes Israel go according to the commandments. After that he can be called the Messiah.” This is a description of the Messiah as a supreme problem solver, which is exactly how the Antichrist will present himself. “And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand” (Daniel 8:25).

DOCTRINAL DANGER IN THE INTERNET AGE (Friday Church News Notes, December 22, 2017,, 866-295-4143) - The Internet is a two-edged sword. On one side it has made it possible for sound Bible teaching to be disseminated to an extent previously unprecedented, but on the other side it has made it possible for heretics to disseminate their teachings to anyone with a smart phone. Many of God’s people have been tripped up by lack of wisdom about Internet resources. The first requirement for using Internet resources safely is to be saved and to know the Bible well and have keen spiritual discernment. The average “Bible-believing” Christian is emphatically not prepared to face the spiritual dangers that lurk everywhere on the Internet or in the average Christian bookstore. If you are not a serious Bible student with a good Bible education and a serious grasp of Bible doctrine; if you are “unskilful in the word of righteousness” and do not have your “senses exercised to discern both good and evil” (Hebrews 5:12-14); you are a babe in the woods. You can easily be “tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness” (Ephesians 4:14). To be able to use “Christian” writings effectively and safely, you must become skillful in God’s Word. This is what I set out to do as soon as I was saved 44 years ago. I knew that I had been deceived before I was saved, and I never wanted to be deceived again. I held onto promises such as John 7:17 and 8:31-32 and set out with much diligence to learn God’s Word. A second requirement for using Internet resources safely is to be informed and wary of authors. You must know who an author is and what he believes and what his biases might be. God’s Word warns us to stay away from men that are unsound. “Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them” (Ro. 16:17). The same Internet that has dangerous materials provides protection for the wise, because it is now a simple matter to find some basic information about an author. To fail to do this is foolish. I would also warn that when it is difficult to find information about a speaker or author, such as his testimony of salvation, church affiliation, and doctrinal beliefs, that should be a loud warning in itself. Before I will allow a man to speak to me on prophecy or any other Bible subject, I must know these things. Wise Bible believers know that they are pilgrims in a dark world and that they have an enemy who wants to deceive them, and they walk in great caution. “The simple believeth every word: but the prudent man looketh well to his going” (Proverbs 14:15).

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BOOKLET - THE CROSS AND THE MARIJUANA LEAF (Friday Church News Notes, December 22, 2017,,, 866-295-4143) - A new booklet, The Cross and the Marijuana Leaf by Linda Nathan, is a timely warning about the use of recreational marijuana. It is available from Following is an excerpt: “The current weed is immensely more powerful than it used to be—to the point of being hallucinogenic. In their book Going to Pot, William Bennett and Robert White explain: ‘Let’s acknowledge that today’s marijuana is at least five times stronger than the marijuana of the past. The THC levels of today’s marijuana average around 15 percent, but go as high as 20 percent and above in the dispensaries found throughout the states that have legalized it for ‘medicinal’ or recreational use. The marijuana of today is simply not the same drug it was in the 60s, 70s or 80s, much less the 1930s. It is much more potent, leading to a great many more health risks.’ The Marijuana Potency Project at the University of Mississippi has found levels of THC as high as 37 percent. That is a growth of a psychoactive ingredient from 3 and 4 percent a few decades ago to close to 40 percent. Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC is the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana that gives the ‘high.’ Synthetic versions can be very harmful. Consider the following: ‘The difference between 3 to 5 percent THC and 13 to 30 percent THC is very significant. It is like comparing a twelve-ounce glass of beer with a twelve-ounce glass of 80 proof vodka; both contain alcohol, but they have vastly different effects on the body when consumed. Indeed, many argue that because of the difference in potency, it is not even the same drug we once knew. Some have taken to calling today’s marijuana “industrial marijuana” or “turbo pot.”’ Such high levels can be hallucinogenic and cause profound perceptual distortions of reality. ... And then there is the connection with psychosis. ‘Nine studies following hundreds to thousands of people for decades searched for a connection between marijuana use and psychosis. All but one of these studies suggest a connection between marijuana use and schizophrenia.’ Other studies reveal the connection between high pot use and a clinically significant increased risk of developing schizophrenia and other mental illnesses during adolescence. OUR OWN EXPERIENCE HAS SHOWN THAT YOU CAN’T KNOW HOW IT WILL AFFECT YOU; IT MIGHT SEEM FINE FOR A WHILE AND THEN ACT WITHOUT WARNING AS A DEPTH CHARGE IN YOUR SOUL. Sir Robin Murray, a psychiatrist at King’s College in London, says, ‘Even I, 20 years ago, used to tell patients that cannabis is safe. It’s only after you see all the patients that go psychotic that you realize—it’s not so safe’” (excerpt from The Cross and the Marijuana Leaf by Linda Nathan,

LOVE IN MARRIAGE (Friday Church News Notes, December 22, 2017,,, 866-295-4143) - “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it” (Eph. 5:25). “That they may teach the young women to ... love their husbands, to love their children” (Tit. 2:4). God is love, and godly love is the key to a lasting, good marriage. It is the key to keeping the hearts of children. It is the key to making child discipline “work.” “Three little words, I love you, can ease a couple through many stormy seas. As someone has said, ‘I is the subject, you is the object, and there is nothing between but love.’ Love affects the look, the tone of voice, and the touch of the hand. Love is accompanied by an attitude of willing, joyful service and personal, caring solicitude. Such love is a commodity made in heaven, a balm for all of earth’s woes, and a sure remedy when all else fails” (John Phillips).

HAS THE “DESIGN ARGUMENT” BEEN REFUTED? (Friday Church News Notes, December 22, 2017,, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from Seeing the Non-existent: Evolution’s Myths and Hoaxes, David Cloud, copyright 2011: “Apologists for evolution claim that the ‘design argument’ has been refuted. They cite philosophers such as David Hume who supposedly debunked the ‘watchmaker argument,’ which was published in William Paley’s book Natural Theology, or Evidences of the Existence and Attributes of the Deity Collected from the Appearances of Nature (1802). Paley’s simple, common-sense argument says that if you find a watch lying on the ground you would recognize immediately that it was designed and produced by an intelligence; likewise, the creation everywhere demonstrates evidence of intelligent design. Contrary to the claims of some, Paley’s argument has never been refuted and indeed cannot be refuted. Dr. Michael Behe says: ‘But exactly where, we may ask, was Paley refuted? Who has answered his argument? How was the watch produced without an intelligent designer? It is surprising but true that the main argument of the [allegedly] discredited Paley has actually never been refuted. Neither Darwin nor Dawkins, neither science nor philosophy, has explained how an irreducibly complex system such as a watch might be produced without a designer. Instead Paley’s argument has been sidetracked by attacks on its injudicious examples and off-the-point theological discussions. Paley, of course, is to blame for not framing his argument more tightly. But many of Paley’s detractors are also to blame for refusing to engage his main point, playing dumb in order to reach a more palatable conclusion. ... Paley’s argument over the years has been turned into a straw man to knock down. Instead of dealing with the real complexity of a system (such as a retina or a watch), some defenders of Darwinism are satisfied with offering a story to account for peripheral features’ (Darwin’s Black Box, chapter 10). The design argument has grown even stronger since Paley’s day through research into microbiology and the discovery of the amazing living machinery in the cell. The obvious design in creation has convinced multitudes of people, including scientists, that there is a God. In 1962, Nobel laureate molecular biologist E.C. Komfield said: ‘While laboring among the intricacies and definitely minute particles in a laboratory, I frequently have been overwhelmed by a sense of the infinite wisdom of God ... the simplest man-made mechanism requires a planner and a maker; how a mechanism ten times more involved and intricate can be conceived as self-constructed and self-developed is completely beyond me’ (‘The Evidence of God in an Expanding Universe,’ Look, Jan. 16, 1962).”

CONCLUSION: The Friday Church News Notes is designed for use in churches and is published by Way of Life Literature’s Fundamental Baptist Information Service. Unless otherwise stated, the Notes are written by David Cloud. Of necessity we quote from a wide variety of sources, but this obviously does not imply an endorsement. We trust that our readers will not be discouraged. It is God’s will that we know the times (1 Ch. 12:32; Mat. 16:3) and that we be as wise as serpents and harmless as doves. The News Notes remind us that the hour is very late, and we need to be ready for the Lord’s coming. Are you sure that you are born again? Are you living for Christ? “And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof” (Rom. 13:11-14).


Distributed by Way of Life Literature., publisher of Bible Study Materials and reports for Fundamental Baptists and other fundamentalist, Bible-believing Christians. Established in 1974, Way of Life Literature is a fundamental Baptist preaching and publishing ministry based in Bethel Baptist Church, London, Ontario, of which Wilbert Unger is the founding Pastor. Brother Cloud lives in South Asia where he has been a church planting missionary since 1979. OUR GOAL IN THIS PARTICULAR ASPECT OF OUR MINISTRY (REPORTS AND FRIDAY NEWS) IS NOT DEVOTIONAL. IS TO PROVIDE INFORMATION TO ASSIST PREACHERS IN THE PROTECTION OF THE CHURCHES IN THIS APOSTATE HOUR.

David Cloud, Way of Life Literature, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143,

The Way of Life Literature preaching and publishing ministry is based at Bethel Baptist Church, London, Ontario, of which Wilbert Unger is the founding Pastor. A mail stop is maintained in Port Huron, Michigan.

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