Every Christian should read the following article written by Ray Comfort from Living Waters Ministry. (Read Full article here)
God has supernaturally taken you back in time. The date is September 10, 2001, the day before the attack on New York’s famed Twin Towers. You and two other speakers have been invited by the United Nations to address one thousand employees at the top of Tower One of the World Trade Center. The subject you have been given is “The Benefits of My Religion.” The other speakers are a well-known Hindu and a New Age teacher from Santa Barbara, California.
The world hates us because it knows not God and hated Him from the beginning
Jesus made some very relevant statements concerning the hatred of His followers (also called Christians) a long time ago. In the book of John from the Bible Jesus stated these words to His disciples, “If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.” (see John 15:19) In verse 18, we read that Jesus made it clear that He would be the object of this hatred before it would come to Christians. “If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you.”
God makes it clear that any hostility Christians face is actually aimed at God Himself. If you don’t believe that, all one needs to do is take a look at the Ten Commandments. Looking at just a few of the commandments, ask yourself if you have ever lied, used God’s name as a cuss word, lusted (Jesus said that is committing adultery in the heart – see Matthew 5:27,28). had hateful thoughts toward a brother, or failed to put God first? If so, then we are seen from God’s perspective as breaking His perfect, holy law. Take a moment to think about what this means. Perhaps you find or have found yourself getting enraged at God. Any anger or lack of humility we have toward God is the hostility we have by nature toward Him. But our mind and flesh filled desires are to naturally desire to do evil and break God’s law.
“…the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” see Romans 8:7,8
We all by nature deserve the judgment of God because we have broken God’s law. We have all committed crimes against God who cannot have sin in His presence. (Sin is the breaking of God’s perfect law and we are guilty of that as seen in the good person test. ) The question we all need to ask is what can be done, if anything, to remedy our relationship with God? If God judges us who are deserving of Hell because we have sinned against Him, is that the end of us or is there a way of escape?
“It is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.” Hebrews 9:27
For anyone sensitive to finding out the answer to this they will find it. You may be surprised or not but the answer has nothing to do with good deeds we do or don’t do. It has nothing to do with what sacrifice we can or cannot make for God either. We cannot earn back a right relationship with God. In fact, the answer really has nothing to do with us at all but Him. And the answer will not be because one joined the right church, or became a better person or found Religion. There is no religion that has the answer for how to escape God’s judgment and restore a right relationship with Him because the answer is found only in God in the Bible. God Himself is the only one who can provide a way of escape from His judgment. Because His love is so great for us, He did that Himself 2000 years ago in the person of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the perfect, holy sacrifice who paid the penalty for us breaking His own law.
“now, once at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.” Hebrews 9:26
“The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23
Jesus Christ is the answer for all humankind to be saved from coming judgment against sin. Satan (God’s arch-enemy) knows it and hates it. Therefore he hates true Christians because he hated God first. But there is hope because Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice and payment, satisfying the great wrath that God has against sin.
“Therefore He [Jesus] is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.” Hebrews 7:25
“God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.” see Romans 8:9-10
As an independent voter, I did not vote for Mr. Trump in 2016. At the time, I felt he wasn’t going to be conservative enough. Now in 2020, we have another presidential election coming up and I plan, God willing, to vote for Donald Trump for the first time. And if you care at all about supporting and protecting our American values as our founders did, I advise you to do the same.
Two vastly different worldviews
Now unless you’re a criminal or a criminal’s advocate and seek to do evil, it’s not difficult to see why everyone should be supporting Trump as president in 2020. There are two political parties and two candidates each representing vastly different views. As it stands today August 8, 2020 one candidate defends life and the other supports death. One defends innocent babies while the other sadly promotes the murder of babies. Mr. Trump has repeatedly spoken out against the religion of death (Islam) as the other candidate continues to defend a religion that beheads, abuses women and seeks to murder any Kafir (none believer) who doesn’t follow Muhammad. President Trump supports our closest alley Israel while the other candidate does not. Trump supports law enforcement and the other party’s candidate does not (see Oregon riots, MN riots).
The right party candidate will support biblical values. The right party candidate will have a moral compass. The right party candidate will love God. And the right party has not removed God from it’s party platform as the Democrat party did in 2012.
The choice is clear
So the choice is clear. Donald Trump represents the only real choice there is for president in 2020. The alternative has sadly been destruction, death and dying. Just look at the cities Portland Oregon, Seattle, New York City, and Chicago to name a few. Besides the destruction and chaos occurring from within, what do these cities all have in common? They are all Democrat controlled cities with leadership who hates Donald Trump.
Let us consider the following accounts during the time Jesus walked on the earth.
Jesus talking to the Jews said.. “I have come to you representing my Father, and you refuse to welcome me, even though you readily accept others who represent only themselves. You gladly honor each other, but you don’t care about the honor that comes from God alone. “ (John 5:43- 44)
The high priest said to him, “I demand in the name of the living God that you tell us whether you are the Messiah, the Son of God.” Jesus replied, “Yes, it is as you say. And in the future you will see me, the Son of Man, sitting at God’s right hand in the place of power and coming back on the clouds of heaven.”
Then the high priest tore his clothing to show his horror, shouting, “Blasphemy! Why do we need other witnesses? You have all heard his blasphemy. (Matthew 26:63-65)
Jesus said to the man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” “Who does this man think he is?” the Pharisees and teachers of religious law said to each other. “This is blasphemy! Who but God can forgive sins?” The Jewish leaders tried all the more to kill him. In addition to disobeying the Sabbath rules, he had spoken of God as his Father, thereby making himself equal with God.
The Jewish leaders replied“…you, a mere man, have made yourself God.” (John 10:33)
After reading the above passages, you may have realized many trends. I would like to draw your attention to a simple yet common theme. This particular theme stirred up many who listened to Jesus talk. The Jewish leadership and others sought to even kill Jesus because of it and eventually we know they did. But why such hatred for an apparently good man who healed, and even performed countless miracles? Why would simple statements and acts of kindness and love by Jesus cause the leaders to cry out “blasphemy!” from a simple statement by Jesus? We know the answer from the verses above.
Jesus claimed one thing that was clear to all who heard Him speak. Jesus made the claim to be God and this was obvious blasphemy to the Jewish leadership. Likewise, even today this remains true. This claim continues to be considered blasphemy by Jesus and/or anyone who claims to be God unless of course it is true and Jesus truly is who He says He is. Like the Jewish leaders, I am aware that many today choose to believe Jesus is not who He claims and yet are willing to accept the account of the life of Jesus. In fact, many might even consider Jesus to be a good teacher and one who would offer good advice.
For us this remains true. If we do not believe Jesus is God than no one can be able to trust anything Jesus says to be the truth. If you do not believe Jesus is who He claims to be, than how can one trust Him to have been even remotely a good teacher? The choice remains. Either Jesus is God and the Savior of the world with power to forgive sin or He is not. Your life depends on who you put your trust in. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6)
Elite Dangerous is a massively multiplayer online space game by Frontier Developments. Although the game requires a persistent internet connection it also features a solo or single-player mode. Elite Dangerous is the successor to Elite which was first released in 1984 and now 30 plus years later, the game has seen quite a change.
My history with Elite Dangerous is virtually non-existent aside from hearsay about a learning curve and how fantastic the game is to play in Virtual Reality. Now it’s true I have interest in open world simulation games such as X-plane, Microsoft Flight Simulator and both Euro and American Truck simulators but interest in a space game not so much. It seems most space games are about aliens, monsters and mostly shooting other spaceships in an arcadey fashion. Something about the wide open vast nothingness of space travel also hasn’t had much appeal….but then again I have never encountered game quite like Elite Dangerous.
What Learning Curve?
Something about Elite Dangerous seemed different. Oh and there’s that learning curve I kept hearing about. A learning curve to play a game? There is always some learning when you are starting a new game especially in flight simulators but this game simulation was suppose have a notable learning curve and was not meant to be taken lightly.
And so armed with a wee bit of knowledge of what I might be getting myself into only through those online game reviews and gameplay, I took the plunge into beginning my journey into the world of Elite Dangerous. And what a journey it has been.
Read the Manual and Make Friends with the Options Menu
Now I don’t consider myself a very fast learner and besides that I prefer to take my time to make sure I’m understanding what I learn. And so after 14 hours later, I was able to fly my first ship! Did I mention I like to take my time? You see, perhaps Elite Dangerous is a game at heart but it’s also a simulation that takes place in space. It must be experienced and that’s not even with VR! Now I generally do not enjoy multiplayer games and so my time in ED has been spent in singleplayer (Solo) mode, along with training tutorials and the options menu for keybindings and that is probably one of best places to start in Elite Dangerous.
If you aren’t familiar with the game, within the universe of Elite Dangerous there are 400 billion star systems as part of the in game reproduction of the Milkyway galaxy. All these systems can be seamlessly traveled to in a spaceship which you can upgrade as you gain credits. You begin the journey in a spaceship called the Sidewinder. If you die or crash in Elite Dangerous you will get your Sidewinder back but will have to start over. Later, when you buy a different ship, you will need to pay a rebuy amount (5%) of your total ship value should you die or crash it.
Flying and docking is an accomplishment in Elite Dangerous
For me the learning curve in Elite Dangerous has been first and foremost related to keybindings and understanding both the game, menus and ship systems terminology. At the start you will want to take a look or two or three at that Elite Dangerous manual which gives a nice overview of system terms. Of course you will need to learn how to operate your ship and it’s not a point and click operation (at first). Each ship features a six-way on-board thruster system (vertical(up and down), lateral(side-to-side), forward and backward and don’t forget about pitch, roll and yaw) somewhat like trying to fly a Harrier jet in space. But unless you would like to go spinning uncontrollable toward the side of the spaceport you might want to leave Flight Assist on.
If you have familiarity with flight/combat simulators then learning to fly in Elite Dangerous will a piece of cake, maybe. Your ship features thrusters are not unfamiliar but figuring out your keybindings just might be! I am using a Flight Stick with throttle control – Thrustmaster Hotas X (Hands On Throttle and Stick). Also a keyboard, a mouse and a Xbox controller. I have heard you can fly with a keyboard and mouse only but I haven’t tried it.
Moving your ship to another star system is another accomplishment
Moving from one star system to another within the galaxy is also a new experience which must be learned. We just don’t do that kind of thing on Earth!
Likewise docking (landing) in a spacestation-like port is also not like driving to grandmas around the block in your car unless you use AutoDock which is a newer feature of the game. (Note: All ships come equipped with AutoDock, Auto Launch and Auto Cruise. Auto Cruise can be useful when hyper-traveling around the galaxy.)
Doing most anything successfully in Elite Dangerous feels like an accomplishment
So you can move around in Elite Dangerous and you’re learning the keybindings and termology? Good. Now what? As a noob to ED at just over 80 hours (at the time of this post) I have learned about a few things you can do in this vast openworld galaxy. There is a war going on within the game but it appears to me, at least visually speaking, to be a nearly silent war (maybe it’s different in Open mode with human players?). But nevertheless, space is really big and so unless you go looking for a fight you might not find any. Each port features a news and mission board which displays information about the faction war and their particular allegiance (if any). You can choose to do missions for the leaders of the factions to earn credits (in game currency) or go exploring on your own.
I have found that doing Courier jobs at first helps as you are learning how to jump from star system to system and it doesn’t require any cargo space. The data is store on your internal computer and if you get scanned by another ship or pirate they will not try to steal your stuff. NPC’s or none playable characters are all that is found in the solo mode but in Open play mode you will encounter human players.
Explore some Planets with Horizons
Recently I have begun to explore systems and map individual planets using the Detailed Surface Scanner (which must be bought at a Starport). The data you get after mapping a planet and from discovered systems can be sold 20ly (light years) away in a different star system for sometimes hundreds of thousands of credits!) If you prefer combat, you can learn how to shoot other ships down and gain credits for doing it. Besides doing missions, you might try mining an asteroid, landing on a planet and disabling turrets on the base for a particular faction leader. This is part of the war except you won’t encounter actual people or aliens walking around with guns. Maybe you like to free-roam and wish to visit a random planet (not for a mission). You can with the included SRV (Surface Recon Vehicle) that is part of the Horizons expansion pack in Elite Dangerous. Horizons is great especially if you want to be able to land on some of the planets and moons. (Note: As of this post there is no life on the planets and you cannot land on any Earth-like planets)
The Universe in Elite Dangerous is really big
I haven’t really scratched the surface (aside from a few planets) of what this game probably has to offer since I am still quite new. However, I have been able to get a glimpse of what this game is and how vast it is. Elite Dangerous is masterpiece in it’s size and beauty but something more jaw dropping is what this game is based off of. When you go outside on a clear night, look up at the night sky and see hundreds of dots of light and realize those are suns similar to our own—one cannot but ask at least one big question. Who made all this?
I know the Maker of the Universe and perhaps you do as well. But if you do not know the Creator Almighty God, there is a reason why it matters more than anything else on this earth. Elite Dangerous was made by mere men but someday all men will face God. Some will meet God willingly in worship and some will be kicking and screaming but today you have an opportunity to find out who the true God really is and why it matters. Many people believe in Heaven but if hell is real place you need to find out what that means to you. I don’t want anyone to go there. If you haven’t already why not check out the good person test linked at my website or read my post called 5 things you should know before you die. And if you have a Bible start reading in John 1. The good person test and starting with John 1 from the Bible will give you a good start to understanding who God is and why it matters since none of us are promised tomorrow. And in case you wondered, this is a matter of life or death and not about joining a religion or church.
But after all we’ve learned, is the game any good?
You learn quite a bit in Elite Dangerous, you need to even to survive but is it a game I would recommend? And how about that learning curve? I would enthusiastically recommend Elite Dangerous but especially to anyone with special interest in Flight/combat simulators and/or truck simulation games with a twist. If you don’t mind learning and setbacks and frustrations and grind to get a reward (menial at first) then you might like this game. Each person is different but do your research and then if you still like what you see, get it on sale with Horizons. Naturally, you will need to take your time to learn ED but I think it can be a rewarding experience when you learn something new. I know it has been for me (and that’s saying a lot).