Liberty of Conscience: The Core Principle of Protestantism

April 9, 2014 | James Rafferty
Liberty of Conscience: The Core Principle of Protestantism

The Origin of Protestantism 

“Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!”

Thus ended Patrick Henry’s famous speech compelling Virginia to join the battle for independence from the British monarchy.

Nearly 250 years before, another group of men met to discuss what would become the new genesis of Protestantism. Again liberty from church-state monarchy was at stake. A deal offered the “favor” of liberty to those who then possessed it, but insisted that the teachings of the Reformation must go no further. Those still under church-state law, as well as the people of other ages (you and me in particular), would be allowed no such liberty. Nearly one half of the reformed princes present at the meeting refused the deal.

“Happily they looked at the principle on which this arrangement was based, and they acted in faith. What was that principle? It was the right of …
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James Rafferty Co-Director
Light Bearers

Heavenly Minded Or Earthly Good?

April 4, 2014 | Jeffrey Rosario
Heavenly Minded Or Earthly Good?

It’s been said that Christians are “so heavenly minded that they’re no earthly good.” That’s a tragic indictment. It infers that with all the injustices and pressing needs of this world, what good is it to be fixated on a future, distant world?

But, ironically, the true problem is precisely the opposite. The issue is not that Christians think too much about heaven, but rather that we don’t think hard enough about it. And this lack is the cause of much indifference in the church regarding the present world.

One example is the apostle Paul, who, in terms of making an impact on the world, is definitely on the long list of game changers. He summarizes his philosophy of life succinctly:

Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth (Colossians 3:2, ESV).

Some translations say “affections,” instead of “minds.” This sounds a whole lot like saying: “get fixated on heaven, not on earth!” So much for the accusation of being “too heavenly minded.” According to Scripture, the more our minds and hearts are …
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Jeffrey Rosario Speaker
Light Bearers

Hidden, Part 2

April 2, 2014 | Risë Rafferty
Hidden, Part 2

The heart has always been thought to be responsible for pumping some eight thousand liters of blood per day at rest and much more during activity. This has been compared to the lifting of approximately 100 pounds one mile high! Blood is five times more viscous than water, meaning it is thicker and heavier. The strength of the heart is evidenced by its function and the fact that the left ventricle can squirt blood thirty feet across a room. All of this blood travels through millions of capillaries, some with diameters smaller than the red blood cells themselves! From Galileo it was derived that the heart was solely responsible for this achievement. Now, some researchers have described an autonomic vortex movement of the blood, implying that the blood and its contents create a type of jet stream of its own in addition to the pump action of the heart. In either case, for there to be life, blood must move through its designated channels.

Blood pressure is the pressure exerted by circulating blood upon the walls of blood vessels. When …
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Risë Rafferty Health Educator
Light Bearers

Water for Life International in Guatemala

March 31, 2014 | James Rafferty
Water for Life International in Guatemala

In February of 2012, I traveled to Guatemala to conduct a series of evangelistic meetings in connection with a shipment of over 1.3 million pieces of literature. When I arrived, the container that had arrived about six weeks before was already half empty. Approximately eight weeks later, the rest of the literature had been dispersed over the entire country. The leadership in Guatemala was so positive that they requested another container. This was filled with over 2 million pieces of literature and shipped in October of 2013. It included 29 boxes of children’s materials prepared by Lew and Freida Tanner, a local retired couple in their 80s who have dedicated thousands of hours to this important ministry for children. Here is the latest report we received from a partner ministry, Water for Life International, concerning this latest shipment:

PARTNERS IN GUATEMALA

Water for Life International (WFL) , drills wells in remote villages of Northeast Guatemala that don’t have safe water. This is a winter project each year as volunteer drillers are available from North America. While drilling the well and setting a hand pump, WFL has the wonderful …
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James Rafferty Co-Director
Light Bearers

Revelation 13: An Annotated Reading

March 22, 2014 | Ty Gibson
Revelation 13: An Annotated Reading

The book of Revelation is highly symbolic. Its prophecies are written in a kind of code language that must be interpreted to make sense. A casual reading will blur the eyes and befuddle the mind. One must take the time to define each symbol by searching the entirety of Scripture, for in Revelation all the books of the Bible meet and end. Once this work has been done, the prophecies of Revelation can be read with understanding, each symbol automatically triggering an interpretation in the reader’s mind.

What you are about to read is Revelation 13 with simple explanatory notes provided in parentheses after each symbolic word and phrase. The effect, I think you will find, is quite rewarding. In a matter of just a few minutes you will have read and understood this remarkable prophecy at a glance, as it were.

One more preliminary note before you proceed: this is not intended to be a systematic study that provides the biblical and historical proofs for the interpretation offered. That type of study you may read here , when you have …
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Ty Gibson Co-Director
Light Bearers

The Catholic Charismatic Alliance

March 22, 2014 | Light Bearers
The Catholic Charismatic Alliance

Dr. Willard Regester talks with James Rafferty about the recent Kenneth Copeland Ministry conference where it was announced that Martin Luther’s protest was over. Bishop Tony Palmer delivered a video message from the Pope and encouraged Christians to disregard Bible truth in favor of unity between Catholics and Protestants.

Light Bearers a publishing, training and evangelism ministry.

The Romanism Within

March 15, 2014 | Ty Gibson
The Romanism Within

The new Pope, Mr. Jorge Mario Bergoglio, has caused quite a stir recently. So much so, in fact, that an ardent Protestant friend said to me the other day, “Wow, this new pope seems like a really good guy and he’s saying some good things. Maybe he’s on God’s side.”

“Yes,” I responded, “he is saying some rather good things, isn’t he? There is, however, the small matter of believing he occupies the position of God on earth, and the little thing about believing that there is no salvation outside the Catholic Church, and the tiny issue of believing he speaks with infallibility, and the minor point about God burning people forever in hell including all babies who die without Catholic baptism, and the modest idea that you can pay money to the church to get people less time burning in purgatory. Besides those items, yes, he is saying some very nice things.”

Of course, Protestantism was formed as a protest against Catholicism and the “Papacy,” a word that refers to the position of absolute authority held by the pope. …
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Ty Gibson Co-Director
Light Bearers

A Nameless Mass?

March 7, 2014 | Ty Gibson
A Nameless Mass?

Six million people.

It’s a big number. When I hear it, I don’t see faces.

But God does.

To me, it’s a number that represents a nameless mass.

But not for God.

He sees faces, behind which are personal histories and heartaches, individual predicaments and potentials. He sees actual persons with names. Each one lives in a particular place, wakes up each day, faces their issues and navigates through the obstacles that confront them. And God feels everything each one of them feels. He sees every detail of every experience that has gone into making each of them exactly who they are at this very moment.

Six million people. It’s a big number. When I hear it, I don’t see faces. But God does.

The particular six million people I’m taking about are the inhabitants of Sierra Leone. For most of us, that’s a world away. We have no way of really wrapping our minds around precisely who these people are. But we can know, and do know, that each one is intimately known by God and is of infinite value to …
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Ty Gibson Co-Director
Light Bearers

Hidden, Part 1

March 5, 2014 | Risë Rafferty
Hidden, Part 1

It was March 1, 1945, during his fourth term, that President Franklin Delano Roosevelt [FDR] delivered a speech to inform Congress and the American people via national radio of the decisions made at the recent Yalta Conference with British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin. His words had rallied the nation during the Great Depression and after Pearl Harbor. Now, America was eager to hear what had been negotiated that would greatly shape the postwar world. But many Americans, especially FDR’s speechwriter, were disappointed. For instead of his usual eloquence, FDR stumbled over his words, made mistakes, and ad-libbed as he lost his place numerous times. Time magazine calculated that he’d departed from his text 49 times and added a total of 700 words. Yes, his vision was failing, but in reality he was a dying man.

No autopsy was done after his death one month later. His medical records were destroyed or hidden. Though sickly, the nation had been assured that Ross McIntire, MD, FDR’s physician, was “perfectly satisfied with FDR’s health,” and that it was “excellent in …
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Risë Rafferty Health Educator
Light Bearers

Happy Digging

March 3, 2014 | David Asscherick
Happy Digging

Paul the Apostle said some strange things, things hard to understand. Even Peter agreed (2 Peter 3:15). And if some of his writings were admittedly puzzling back then, how much more so would that be the case today, nearly two millennia later?

I used to be exasperated over Paul’s occasional inscrutability, but no longer.

And the reason is an interesting one: the joy of discovery––you know, that aha moment when, as the Australians would say, “the penny drops,” that moment when the fog of perplexity clears and light floods a formerly opaque passage. It’s a beautiful and rewarding thing; it is, truth be told, one of my favorite things about being a follower of Jesus and a student of Scripture.

Let’s take a brief look at one such passage. Galatians 2:19 (which comes just before the oft-quoted Galatians 2:20) reads: “For I through the law died to the law that I might live to God.”

Huh?

You’ve heard people quote Galatians 2:20 a thousand times. How about Galatians 2:19? Quite probably, you’ve never heard someone quote it from memory.

Many …
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David Asscherick Speaker
Light Bearers