RSS Feed

Tag Archives: cable news

S.A.N.S. Episode 273: Hold You Tight

If you watch any form of cable news, current events are littered with crime, devastation, and heartache. You don’t have to be a child to need a hug to brighten your day. This is the message that Dan Bremnes sings about in his new song Hold You Tight. The attached video uses current events to reach a broad group of people.

At that time the disciples came up and asked Jesus, Who then is [really] the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? And He called a little child to Himself and put him in the midst of them, And said, Truly I say to you, unless you repent (change, turn about) and become like little children [trusting, lowly, loving, forgiving], you can never enter the kingdom of heaven [at all]. Whoever will humble himself therefore and become like this little child [trusting, lowly, loving, forgiving] is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.And whoever receives and accepts and welcomes one little child like this for My sake and in My name receives and accepts and welcomes Me, Matthew 18:1-5.

When I first listened to Dan’s song, the above passage immediately came to mind. As busy adults, sometimes we lose focus on what really matters in life. The lyrics of Hold You Tight implies that Jesus will be there with you through the storms that you face, Matthew 11:28-30. Don’t try to fight these difficult times alone. Rather, cast your burdens at the foot of the cross so you can find relief for your soul.

by Jay Mankus

S.A.N.S. Episode 185: Battle for the Minds

Today’s song screams 1980’s. Crosssection released the album Before the Dawn in 1989. The lyrics of Battle for the Minds is a daily prayer Christians have been offering up to the Lord for the past 30 years. Unfortunately, if you ever watch cable news, it doesn’t take long to realize that the liberals and progressives have won this battle by controlling public education and most colleges.

See to it that no one carries you off as spoil or makes you yourselves captive by his so-called philosophy and intellectualism and vain deceit (idle fancies and plain nonsense), following human tradition (men’s ideas of the material rather than the spiritual world), just crude notions following the rudimentary and elemental teachings of the universe and disregarding [the teachings of] Christ (the Messiah), Colossians 2:8.

The apostle Paul wrote about the Battle for human minds to members of the Church at Colosse. Paul suggests that intellectualism and philosophy interfere with God’s ability to shape your mind as a spiritual potter. Colossians 2:6-7 encourages Christians to daily study the Bible so that spiritual roots are developed. While the Battle for the Minds hasn’t aged well, the message still rings true today.

by Jay Mankus

Living Good and Honest Lives

If you watch cable news, a minute doesn’t go by without at least one exaggeration, lie or mis-truth. Apparently, just reporting the news is too boring. In this age of click bait, providing one daily soundbite for social media is too tempting for commentators to abstain. According to one of Jesus’ disciples, this is not how human beings should live their lives. God has a different plan and will for your life.

For it is God’s will and intention that by doing right [your good and honest lives] should silence (muzzle, gag) the ignorant charges and ill-informed criticisms of foolish persons, 1 Peter 2:15.

I started this week by reading Aaron Sorkin’s screenplay the Social Network. The opening scene consists of Mark Zuckerberg sitting at a bar with his date. The dialog is designed to illustrate Zuckerberg’s desire to become part of the most elite club on the Harvard campus. This one-way conversation bores Ericka Albright, Mark’s date, who appears to want to live and good and decent life.

No [actual] evil, misfortune, or calamity shall come upon the righteous, but the wicked shall be filled with evil, misfortune, and calamity. 22 Lying lips are extremely disgusting and hateful to the Lord, but they who deal faithfully are His delight, Proverbs 12:21-22.

Unfortunately, in this age of Cancel Culture and Wokeness, most people are afraid to share what they really believe and think in a social setting. Rather than risk offending someone, honest opinions are held back. Instead, a growing number of people sugar coat their replies to avoid conflict and criticism. While agreeing to disagree is a good option, God wants his followers to live good and honest lives as you learn to love your neighbors as yourself.

by Jay Mankus

What Makes Demons Tremble?

Over five billion copies of the Bible have been sold worldwide. This book is a great resource for history, faith, and religious practices. Yet, the Bible contains details of what will happen in the last days on earth. The book of Revelation refers to seven tribulations that lead up to the battle of Armageddon, Revelation 16:14-16. The conclusion of this war is what makes demons tremble.

You believe that God is one; you do well. So do the demons believe and shudder [in terror and horror such as [a]make a man’s hair stand on end and contract the surface of his skin]! – James 2:19

If you follow current events by watching cable news or reading articles on various sites, not much makes sense. Criminals in many states are being released from jail without bail on the same day only to commit similar or more violent attacks on law abiding citizens days later. This trend has spiraled act of control resulting in numerous unnecessary deaths if these criminals were punished for their first violent offense.

And angels who did not keep (care for, guard, and hold to) their own first place of power but abandoned their proper dwelling place—these He has reserved in custody in eternal chains (bonds) under the thick gloom of utter darkness until the judgment and doom of the great day. [The wicked are sentenced to suffer] just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the adjacent towns—which likewise gave themselves over to impurity and indulged in unnatural vice and sensual perversity—are laid out [in plain sight] as an exhibit of perpetual punishment [to warn] of everlasting fire, Jude 1:6-7.

This is not how the Bible works. According to Matthew 12:36-37, there will be a day of judgment where you will have to give an account for everything you have done on earth. Individuals who have had near death experiences have explained this as watching a movie about your life containing the good, bad and ugly moments. After dying, everyone will be judged by God. This is what makes demons tremble.

by Jay Mankus

Overcoming the Coronavirus Mountain

If you listen to cable news, scan social media or regularly follow Twitter, fear is spread daily about the Coronavirus. When the CDC updates their numbers of new cases and death toll every afternoon, panic can set in at anytime. Trying to fight this invisible disease can overwhelm even optimistic souls. Thus, the more contagious and deadly the Coronavirus becomes. it’s like trying to climb the Mt. Everest in Himalayan Mountains by yourself, without any assistance.

And Peter remembered and said to Him, Master, look! The fig tree which You doomed has withered away! 22 And Jesus, replying, said to them, Have faith in God [constantly], Mark 11:21-22.

Beside being called a Jewish Rabbi, Jesus was an amazing teacher, using visual aids to illustrate spiritual truths. Earlier in the day, Jesus was hoping to rely on a fig tree to satisfy his hunger. Upon further review, this tree was barren. Seizing the moment, Jesus cursed this tree which withered immediately. This act wasn’t done for selfish ambition. Rather, Jesus wanted to demonstrate the power of prayer. To show the spiritual potential for those who believe in God.

23 Truly I tell you, whoever says to this mountain, Be lifted up and thrown into the sea! and does not doubt at all in his heart but believes that what he says will take place, it will be done for him. 24 For this reason I am telling you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe (trust and be confident) that it is granted to you, and you will [get it], Mark 1:23-24.

In his book Relentless, John Tess shares his battle with cancer. Given 18 months to live with a rare form of prostrate cancer, this disease was relentless, coming back time after time. Three years into his struggle to survive, one verse from the Bible transformed John’s perspective. Mark 1:23 uses a mountain to convey that obstacles face individuals daily. The only way to conquer and overcome these barriers is through prayer. May God give you the faith to believe that fasting and prayer will result in developing a cure for Coronavirus.

by Jay Mankus

To Impeach or Not to Impeach?

Impeachment is the process by which a legislative body, the House of Representatives in the United States, levels charges against a government official. A decision to impeach a government official is equivalent to an indictment in criminal law. This act does not actually remove an official from office. Rather, this statement of charges is voted on by the House. If enough votes are received, the Senate conducts a trial based upon articles of impeachment vetoed upon. The last president to be impeached by Congress was Bill Clinton in 1998.

So Jesus was saying to the Jews who had believed Him, “If you abide in My word [continually obeying My teachings and living in accordance with them, then] you are truly My disciplesm John 8:31.

While this decision more than 20 years ago seemed logical at the time for Republican leaders, impeaching Clinton back fired resulting in Democratic wins at the ballet box during the 1998 elections. The impeachment frenzy was revitalized this past week, bombarding viewers on cable news and setting social media on fire. After reports were leaked of a conversion between President Trump and the new Ukrainian president, Democratic leaders have initiated an impeachment inquiry. Meanwhile, Republican members of Congress claim this decision is merely an attempt to overturn the results of the 2016 presidential election.

And you will know the truth [regarding salvation], and the truth will set you free [from the penalty of sin],” John 8:32.

As an observer of this political drama, our justice system is on the verge of collapse. The concept of innocent until proven guilty apparently does not apply to President Trump, a former Democrat who is now the leader of the Republican party. High ranking progressive leaders continue to presume that our 45th president is guilty without any clear evidence of a crime committed. Whether it’s Russian interference, endless classified leaks or this new Ukrainian phone call, certain Democratic leaders are itching to impeach President Trump. Yet, without any concrete evidence, history could repeat itself in 2020. As concerned citizens watch this chaos, all you and I can do is pray for clarity so that the truth will set Congress free.

by Jay Mankus

Fulfilling the Common Good

Good is one of those words that is overused.  As absolutes are becoming replaced by opinions fueled by cable news and talk radio, what is good and what is bad varies.  In the days of the Old Testament, Judges began to do what was right in their own eyes, removing the Bible as a measuring stick.  Similar to modern day humanism, anything that feels natural is deemed good.  On the other hand, anything that results in unpleasant experiences is considered bad.  Those who adopt this mentality place self seeking endeavors above the common good.

Now there are [distinctive] varieties of spiritual gifts [special abilities given by the grace and extraordinary power of the Holy Spirit operating in believers], but it is the same Spirit [who grants them and empowers believers]. And there are [distinctive] varieties of ministries and service, but it is the same Lord [who is served]. And there are [distinctive] ways of working [to accomplish things], but it is the same God who produces all things in all believers [inspiring, energizing, and empowering them]. But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit [the spiritual illumination and the enabling of the Holy Spirit] for the common good, 1 Corinthians 12:4-7.

During the first century, there was some confusion due to how God was allocating spiritual gifts among church members.  Apparently, jealousy distracted Christians from accomplishing the common good for society.  People who were blessed with special abilities that demonstrated God’s extraordinary powers were placed in higher esteem that those with more traditional gifts like discernment and hospitality.  This rift within Corinth inspired the apostle Paul to remind believers that without displaying love, spiritual gifts are meaningless, 1 Corinthians 13:1-3.

“Each of us… must rededicate ourselves to serving the common good.  Our individual fates are linked, our futures intertwined.  And if we act in that knowledge and in that spirit, together, as the Bible says, we can move mountains,” President Jimmy Carter 1978.

Jimmy Carter is the last evangelical Christian to hold the presidency of the United States.  Although most Americans would refer to the Carter presidency as a failure, this man has held a higher calling.  Known for his service to Habitat for Humanity, founded in his home state of Georgia, Carter has embraced the concept of providing homes for the homeless.  While most former presidents end up going on book tours, concentrate on speaking engagements or traveling the world, Carter volunteered his time to build homes.  The quote above serves as a great example of what it means to fulfill the common good.  Just as the city of Babel came together with a common purpose to erect a tower, Christian’s united under one spirit can move mountains.

by Jay Mankus

The Center of Controversy

The term controversy refers to a prolonged disagreement often resulting in heated public debates.  These discussions are marked by emotional expressions of opposing views.  Altercations take place daily on cable news, college campuses and social media as world views clash.  This war of words involves an exchange between two or more parties, wrangling to expose the flaws of their opponent.  When someone becomes offended by another belief, comment or post, these words quickly become the center of controversy.

But avoid foolish and ill-informed and stupid controversies and genealogies and dissensions and quarrels about the Law, for they are unprofitable and useless, Titus 3:9.

Based upon my observations over the past decade, it appears that three main groups determine, define and dictate what is considered controversy and what is not.  Academia, entertainment and the media combine forces to police speech in America.  A growing number of universities once focused on higher education, now seek to create safe spaces for their student body.  Meanwhile, Hollywood stars are using their platform to become social activists, speaking out against points of view they deem controversial.  To avoid being hypocritical, disclaimers are presented before any movie or show, pre-warning audiences about their content.  Finally, the media controls news stories to denounce, excite or outrage audiences, hoping to persuade viewers to embrace their side of an argument.

After a first and second warning reject a divisive man [who promotes heresy and causes dissension—ban him from your fellowship and have nothing more to do with him], 11 well aware that such a person is twisted and is sinning; he is convicted and self-condemned [and is gratified by causing confusion among believers], Titus 3:10-11.

During one of his many messages, the reverend Billy Graham once said, “the Bible will always be the center of controversy.”  Whoever opens up this book will be challenged to alter their life style.  Thus, when an outsider hears commands, decrees and precepts from the Bible, many will be offended.  Often responding back with words like “I can’t believe you said that.”  The shrewd will reply, “I didn’t, I just quoted God.”  Meanwhile, other religions continue to object to Jesus’ own words, “there is only one way to heaven,” John 14:6.  Perhaps its time to follow in the footsteps of Hollywood by placing a disclaimer inside each cover of the Bible.  Warning this book will radically transform your life if you have ears to hear and eyes to see.  No matter what Christians do, atheists, liberals and progressives will continue to refer to the Bible as controversial.  Nonetheless, as long as modern believers strive to be salt and light to the world, quiet godly character will be more persuasive than getting caught up in a long winded controversial dispute.

by Jay Mankus

An Infusion of Worship

Following the events in Charlottesville, Virginia last weekend, I’ve been consumed with depression.  Anyone trying to keep up with this story has been bombarded with a media frenzy.  Cable news stopped normal programming to air hourly updates, carry eyewitness reports and talk to panelists about their professional opinions.  The more I listened and watched, the worse I felt.

God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth, John 4:24.

After experiencing a few days of media silence this week, attempting to remove the negativity from my life, a thought came to my mind.  The Bible suggests that human beings were created to worship God.  When individuals drift off course away from this divine purpose, meaning and purpose for life fades.  Thus, those who reach this point like me need an infusion of worship to revive your soul.

I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship, Romans 12:1.

Yesterday, I replaced the radio with Christian music from my car stereo.  As soon as a few inspirational songs came on, my mood was transformed.  Instead of arguing with talk radio callers and the host, my mind was swayed by the lyrics I began singing along to.  This spiritual infusion gave me the boost I needed to make it through the day.  However, this shouldn’t be a once in a while practice.  Rather, if you want experience a permanent infusion of worship, set aside time daily for worship by offering your body up as a living sacrifice.

by Jay Mankus

%d bloggers like this: