Way of Life Literature

Publisher of Bible Study Materials

Way of Life Literature

Publisher of Bible Study Materials

Friday Church News Notes
Volume 22, Issue 1 - January 1, 2021
Graphical Edition
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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GOOGLE NOTIFIES CHILDREN IF PARENTS ARE MONITORING THEIR ACCOUNTS (Friday Church News Notes, January 1, 2021, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from “Google confirms,” Just the News, Dec. 21, 2020: “Google’s child-notification policies received attention when film director Robby Starbuck claimed on Twitter that his 7-year-old child had received a warning from Google that his account was being monitored.  ‘Our 7-year-old son has to have google for homeschooling,’ Starbuck wrote on Twitter, ‘so naturally we setup parental controls but look what [Google] did. They sent my son an email telling him we’re supervising his account.’ ‘Your privacy is important to us,’ the company wrote to the 7-year-old boy, ‘and we want to remind you that your parent ... is supervising your Google account.’ Reached for comment, the company confirmed it does notify young children when parents are monitoring their account activity. The company pointed to both the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and the recently passed UK Age Appropriate Design Code as examples of child-privacy advocacy to which it adheres. The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child--which dates to September 1990--holds, in part, that ‘no child shall be subjected to arbitrary or unlawful interference with his or her privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to unlawful attacks on his or her honour and reputation.’”

ONTARIO PASTOR FINED $100,000 AND COULD FACE PRISON FOR HOLDING CHURCH SERVICES (Friday Church News Notes, January 1, 2021, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from “Ontario pastor,” Conservative Review, Dec. 25, 2020: “The Harvest Bible Church in Windsor, Ontario, released a press statement on Thursday, Dec. 24, claiming that the church’s lead pastor, Dr. Aaron Rock, has been fined up to $100,000 and could face a year in prison for holding church services.Police also informed us that they will bar our congregation from entering the church on Christmas Eve, contrary to Section 176 of the Criminal Code and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. We are deeply grieved by these unlawful and immoral acts, having already been banned from meeting on Good Friday and Easter Sunday,’ a statement from the church reads. The church says that the Windsor-Essex County Health United has not responded to any written communication from the church while police close the premises. ... Pastor Rock said that legal action against provincial governments that infringe on religious freedoms is coming soon. ‘Yes there will be lawsuits, they will start in the western provinces, with the goal to overturn their draconian rules. Then they will move to Ontario.’” Pastor Rock told the Post Millennial, “I think our justice system is under the spell of foolishness, but in all honesty whatever the courts decide or not decide, makes very little difference to me. I have a work for God, a mandate for God, and whether the court upholds this ridiculous charge or not, it doesn’t change my convictions” (“Ontario pastor,” Post Millennial, Dec. 28, 2020).

JOURNALIST SENTENCED TO FOUR YEARS IN PRISON BY CHINESE COURT (Friday Church News Notes, January 1, 2021, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - As a reminder that there is no true freedom in communist China, a journalist has been sentenced to four years in prison for reporting on Covid-19. The following is excerpted from “This Brave Woman Reported Covid-19,” PJMedia, Dec. 28, 2020: “On Monday, a Chinese court sentenced a lawyer-turned-citizen-journalist who traveled to Wuhan to report on COVID-19. Authorities first detained her in May after her livestream reporting in Wuhan. The government charged her with ‘picking quarrels and provoking trouble.’ A Chinese court sentenced the journalist, 37-year-old Zhang Zhan, to four years in jail, her lawyer Zhang Keke told reporters outside the courtroom. Zhang reportedly began a hunger strike in June, but she has been force-fed via a nasal tube. China has punished eight virus whistleblowers so far. The Chinese Communist Party lied to cover up the coronavirus pandemic early on, and waited until after 5 million people had already left Wuhan before locking down the city at the center of the outbreak. The party also reportedly destroyed early samples of the virus and silenced doctors who tried to warn the world about it. A University of Southampton study found that if the Communist Party had enacted quarantine measures three weeks earlier, the coronavirus spread would have been reduced by 95 percent. When the World Health Organization (WHO) tweeted that the coronavirus might transmit from person to person, the Chinese government told the WHO to remove that statement, and the WHO complied. ... China has even threatened U.S. senators by name who dared to call Beijing to account for its malfeasance.”

VIDEO GAME INDUSTRY REVENUE SURPASSES MOVIES, SPORTS COMBINED (Friday Church News Notes, January 1, 2021, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - Revenue from video games worldwide reached $180 billion in 2020, an increase of 20% over the previous year, surpassing the sports and movie industries combined (Just the News, Dec. 27, 2020). While there are video games that are relatively innocent and might be used in wise and godly moderation, these are not the most popular ones, and even with these there is always the danger that video gaming will become an addictive waste of life’s fleeting hours. There is also the ever-present danger of getting drawn into truly wicked games. “Hell and destruction are never full; so the eyes of man are never satisfied” (Pr. 27:20). A former gamer says, “Visiting families, I’ve seen ‘innocent’ children’s games having advertisements for violent games that showed texts like ‘kill’ or ‘headshot,’ including the bloody graphics. Other advertisements contained gambling, women with very few clothes on, and so on. I’ve yet to see the first video game on a smartphone/tablet that doesn’t have such advertising.” Video games are so addictive that thousands of husbands and wives have been virtually abandoned for make-believe games played in cyberspace. In other words, they have been abandoned for nothing, for a figment of the imagination, for pixels on a screen, for less than soap bubbles. Video games are designed to be addictive. The developers and markets are in the business for money. They are not innocent promoters of entertainment. If you let them, they will steal your time, your heart, your holiness. The multi-player online video games are so addictive that they are likened to drugs. EverQuest is called “Never rest” and “Ever crack,” World of Warcraft is called “World of War Crack,” Halo 3 is called “Halodiction.” The most addictive and dangerous are the MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing) games. Nothing takes over young people’s hearts and minds more than these.

SPIRITUAL SAFETY IN THE FACEBOOK AGE (Friday Church News Notes, January 1, 2021, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - This comprehensive book on social media dangers and protections is particularly geared for use as a Bible course in homes and churches. Chapters are Spiritual Safety Requires Understanding the Times, Spiritual Victory Requires Understanding Social Media Dangers, Spiritual Safety Requires a Heart Seeking God’s Will, Spiritual Safety Requires Building the Right Kind of Churches and Homes, Spiritual Safety Requires the Right Mindset, Spiritual Safety Requires Practical Steps for Protection, Church Smartphone Accountability Program, Beware of Video Games, and Recommended Materials for Youth Discipleship. In Spiritual Safety in the Facebook Age, we look at social media in general, with special focus on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, TikTok, YouTube, Tumblr, Google, and Kik. The first chapter describes the present age as the age of apostasy, the age of the Great Commission, the age of scoffing and rebellion, the age of music, the sexualized age, the age of advertising, the age of global commerce, the age of celebrity, the internet age, the age of the smartphone, and the age of social media. The second chapter documents 14 major dangers of social media, including evil communications, the worldview of the media owners, tracking, addiction, self-promotion, stalking, slander, immorality, heresy, time wasting, and ecumenism. The chapter on practical steps gives suggestions for individuals, parents, and churches. 285 pages, available in print and eBook editions, www.wayoflife.org.

DETROIT SUES BLACK LIVES MATTER (Friday Church News Notes, January 1, 2021, www.wayoflife.org fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from “Detroit Sues,” PJmedia, Dec. 22, 2020: “The Black Lives Matter umbrella group Detroit Will Breathe sued Detroit, alleging police abuse of force during the George Floyd riots in the city this past summer. A judge granted a restraining order in September but the city responded with a countersuit, claiming that the Black Lives Matter group organized a ‘civil conspiracy’ to riot, destroy property, and disturb the peace. According to Detroit’s countersuit, the protesters ‘illegally, maliciously, and wrongfully conspired with one another with the intent to and for the illegal purpose of disturbing the peace, engaging in disorderly conduct, inciting riots, destroying public property, resisting or obstructing officers in charge of duty, and committing acts of violence against [the city] and [Detroit Police Department] officers.’ ... The city asks the court to award ‘general and compensatory damages equal to’ the losses the city sustained, along with punitive damages, a judgment the Black Lives Matter group illegally conspired, and attorneys’ fees. ... Importantly, the Detroit countersuit cites various Black Lives Matter videos Detroit Will Breathe promoted, some of which ‘show speakers encouraging violence or endorsing violence against police officers, promoting the destruction and defacing of property, and disrupting the lives of Detroit residents.’ The counter-lawsuit may force a Black Lives Matter group to fork over cash damages for the riots, a positive step toward justice for the riots that proved the most destructive (in terms of insurance claims) in U.S. history. While leftists repeat claims of ‘institutional racism,’ the riots have victimized the black community. The destruction disproportionately hit black communities in Kenosha, Wisc., Minneapolis, and Chicago. The riots destroyed black lives, black livelihoods, and black monuments. At least 26 Americans have died in the riots, most of them black.”

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).

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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, fbns@wayoflife.org

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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