4 years ago

Be sure your (Twitter) sins will find you out


 

 

 

 

 

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MODERN HEADLINES MIRROR BIBLICAL LESSONS, BOTH GOOD AND BAD

TOM LAMPRECHT:  Harry, I want to take you to a couple of stories, one out of The Daily Wire, the other out of Fox News.

The Daily Wire is reporting that, apparently, Twitter employees are paid to view private sex messages. All those people that have been doing things on their Twitter accounts who thought that nobody else would notice – well, apparently, at Twitter, there’s a whole group of engineers who monitor what you think are your private messages.

One Twitter employee was quoted as saying, “All your illegitimate wives and, like, all the girls you’ve been doing things with, they’re now on my server. I’m going to send it to your wife and she’s going to get you in a divorce.”

Then the second story, out of Fox News, three brothers – Ned, Roger and Steven Landau – their mom inherited some things from their grandparents and they, in turn, when their mom passed away, inherited it from her – things like a silver tea set, a couple of old paintings, perhaps, were worth a few hundred dollars.

As it turns out, one piece that was inherited, a painting, turned out to be a Rembrandt painting. What they thought they were going to get a few hundred dollars for, they got over $1 million.

DR. REEDER: Tom, when you brought these stories, first of all, they were interesting, but they were interesting beyond just a personal interest story or a human-interest story. They were interesting in that there are a couple of Biblical principles that are embedded in this.

YOU REAP WHAT YOU SOW, EVEN ELECTRONICALLY

Let’s take up the first one and that is this fact that, here, people are gathering all of these messages that you think are private, and they’re together and, as one employee said, “You’re just a moment away from financial ruin as I collect all this data and send it in a package to your wife.”

I couldn’t help but think of the Book of Numbers that contains an amazing statement – and it’s supported, of course, in the book of Galatians – in Numbers, it says, “Be sure your sins will find you out,” and in Galatians, “What a man sows, he’ll also reap.”

And then the warnings of the apostle Paul that, “We must all appear before the judgment seat and we will give an account for all that we have said and done.” And the reality that the Lord says to us that, “The things that you think are done in secret will yet be revealed in the light of day and from the housetop, itself.”

Here are these warnings that what you think is done in private and what you think is done in secret actually will also see the light of day – if nothing else, the light of day at the judgment where we all give an account.

SIN IS NOT VICTIMLESS OR SECRET

I was absolutely convinced that my mother had some omniscient gift in that I could not get away with anything in my life. The reality is it not only comes out in knowledge; it comes out in effect, as well. When we sin, there’s no such thing as victimless sins.

What your sins do is they destroy something in you and when they destroy it in you, they destroy it in the relationships you have with other people. Secret moments of pornography, those are victimless? Well, no, it’s not victimless. Just think of what’s happening in the lives of the people that you are purveying and think of what’s going to happen in the way you now look at other people, including your spouse. They have consequences in life and they certainly have consequences in eternity.

JESUS MAKES US RIGHTEOUS DESPITE TRANSGRESSIONS

If anyone’s listening to me and you believe that there is a God who is holy, who will by no means leave the guilty unpunished and that we must all appear before the judgment seat to give an account, then you have got to be thinking, “Oh my goodness, every sin is worthy of the judgment of God – the wages of sin, singular – is death and here I will stand before the Lord with thousands upon thousands upon thousands of capital crimes. Is there any hope?” I want you to know today there is a glorious hope for you and that hope is to come to Jesus Christ.

The Bible said, “In Christ, He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us. He paid for all of the sins of all of His people.” The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 5 that, “He did not count our trespasses against us.”

Now, by the way, it doesn’t say He didn’t count our transgressions – our trespasses, our sins – it doesn’t say that. He counts them. They are legally and experientially attached to us, but for all who are in Christ, He doesn’t count them against us. He did count them against His son and, when He counted them against His son, something else happened: He counted the righteousness of Christ for you.

Tom, there’s a wonderful moment when Jacob – and you can see the echo – Jacob knows what he did in deceiving his father Isaac, so when it came time for him to bless the children of Joseph, you remember how Joseph directed his hands to the younger and to the older. And now, so he reverses his hands and, by purpose, the blessings that goes to the older goes to the younger and the blessing to go to the younger went to the older.

If you’re a Christian, that’s exactly what happened to you. Jacob is a type of the glory and grace of God toward us. He took His hand and the consequences of our sin that ought to be placed on us, He switches and crosses His arms and it is placed upon the one who did not deserve it and that is Jesus. And the blessings upon his son are now put upon those sons of wrath so that we can have eternal life in Jesus Christ.

UNKNOWN TREASURE REVEALED TO FAMILY

Now let me go to the other story in the few moments that we have left and that’s this. You’ve got these paintings and, “Oh, this is just throw away stuff – went down to Woolworth’s and picked up a few paintings, here,” and then they find out, “Here’s a Rembrandt. You think it’s worth a couple hundred dollars and it’s worth a million.”

I’m reminded of the story of Randolph Hearst, who hired a guy to go find a particular Rembrandt and the guy searched and searched and he came one day and said, “Well, Mr. Hearst, I’ve got bad news and I’ve got good news.” And he said, “What’s the bad news?” He said, “The bad news is I have searched every art gallery, every treasure trove in all of Europe and everywhere for that Rembrandt and I cannot find it in any of those places.”

He said, “Well, then what’s the good news?” He said, “The good news is you already own it.” He finally came back and he went through the warehouse to look for something else and, as he came to the warehouse to look for something else, he found out that Randolph Hearst had already purchased this Rembrandt years ago or one of his agents had purchased it for him. He already owns it.

OUR TREASURE IN HEAVEN WAITS FOR US

I’m reminded of arriving in Heaven. One guy said, “You look at these boxes and you say, ‘Peter, what are these boxes over here for?’ and he says, ‘You don’t want to know.’ He said, ‘Yeah, I do want to know.’ He said, ‘Okay, they’re unclaimed blessings for believers.’ And he said, ‘Oh, Peter do I have any boxes over there?’ He said, ‘You don’t want to know.’ ‘Yeah, I do, Peter.’ He said, ‘Well, come here, let me show you,’ and here are these hundreds of boxes labeled ‘Unclaimed Blessings for Harry Reeder.’”

People say to me, “Have you gotten the second blessing?” I said, “Second blessing? I got the third, the fourth, the fifth.” Listen, I’ve been blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places. The riches I have in Christ are untold. The problem isn’t do I have them already – the problem is am I using them now?

BELIEVERS MUST SEEK KNOWLEDGE OF GOD’S MAJESTIC BLESSINGS

And that’s what that story reminds me of. You and I have in our possession untold blessings. “Harry, how can I find out about these untold blessings?” Get in a Bible-believing church that preaches the riches and responsibilities of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

What you are and who you are in Christ is unbelievably majestic. You think your walk and blessings in Christ are worth a pittance – actually, they are majestic in worth and value. And that’s what you need to know: the blessings that have been given to you and purchased for you in Jesus Christ. Not these unbiblically defined blessings of the riches of this world, but the gloriously defined blessings of the riches of eternity.

Remember, your sins will find you out, but what you need to do is find Jesus, who finds you and, when He finds you, God switches hands. The blessings due to Christ He places upon all those who are in Christ but don’t deserve it. Those things that you deserve, those things came from God’s hand to punish Son, that you could have eternal life when He went to the cross. Now you have riches untold that are yours in Christ Jesus, the Lord of Glory.

TOMORROW’S TOPIC: NEW DISCOVERY OUT OF HOLYLAND

TOM LAMPRECHT:  Harry, we are out of time for today. On Wednesday’s edition of Today in Perspective, once again, a little digging in the Holy Land has unearthed a major find and a confirmation of the accuracy of the Bible.

DR. REEDER: And why is that important? Well, let’s talk about archaeology, the Bible and the Gospel of Jesus Christ and what does it mean in your life.

Dr. Harry L. Reeder III is the Senior Pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham.

This podcast was transcribed by Jessica Havin, editorial assistant for Yellowhammer News. Jessica has transcribed some of the top podcasts in the country and her work has been featured in a New York Times Bestseller.

7 hours ago

Birmingham-Southern College to impose fee on unvaccinated students

Unless students of Birmingham-Southern College are vaccinated against COVID-19, those who attend the private liberal arts school will be forced to pay a $500 fee “to offset continual weekly antigen testing and quarantining.”

In an email sent to students, the college announced its pandemic protocols for those returning to campus for the fall semester. In what appears to be an effort to encourage students to receive the vaccine, BSC told students it will levy a monetary charge against those who are unvaccinated. The school cited the need for funding to be applied toward COVID-related mitigation measures as a reason for the charge.

The email reads in part, “Due to the lack of federal funds for pandemic precautions this term, all students will initially be charged $500 for the fall term to offset continual weekly antigen testing and quarantining. Students who are fully vaccinated prior to the beginning of fall term will receive an immediate $500 rebate.”

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The college announced in the email that it has also set separate move-in dates for vaccinated and unvaccinated students.

The College Republican Federation of Alabama (CRFA) has condemned the move as discriminatory against students who have chosen not to receive the vaccine.

“The College Republican Federation of Alabama condemns this obvious attack on students who are not vaccinated,” says CRFA chairman Clint Reid. “While vaccines are an important tool in the fight against COVID-19 we are still a free society where one should not be held at ransom to the tune of $500 if they do not feel the vaccine is the best course of action for them. We call on Birmingham-Southern College to drop this outrageous fee.”

The college’s email goes on to direct students who have been immunized against the virus to complete a “Vaccination Report Form.” BSC stated that the school’s goal is to achieve an 85% vaccination rate among students, faculty and staff.

Portion of the email sent to BSC students as follows obtained by Yellowhammer News: 

Birmingham-Southern College did not respond to a request for comment. Yellowhammer News has inquired with the Attorney General’s Office regarding the legality of BSC’s guidelines and will provide updates accordingly.

Dylan Smith is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanSmithAL

8 hours ago

Tim James: A house divided against itself cannot stand

Last week the discussion of COVID vaccination burst into the news and ripped the scab right off the wound exposing the divide among Alabamians about whether to vaccinate or not. We all know there can be tense moments among friends and family when the vaccine topic comes up especially when there are differing opinions in the room.

Well, last week the discussion hit a fever pitch on a grand scale and landed on the front pages of the national news outlets. According to news reports, in Alabama, there are about 2.5 to 3 million people that have CHOSEN NOT to take the vaccine out of the state’s population of 5.1 million. Approximately 60% of all Alabamians have made this their personal health choice.

I am writing this letter today to express my distaste for those bent on shaming people in which they disagree on the vaccine issue. They divide Alabamians into two classes: the vaccinated and the unvaccinated. The media’s contempt is in overdrive for anyone that dares to disagree and not blindly follow the government directives. So, they shame by spewing their poison proclaiming the unvaccinated are the problem. Their assertion of “Blame” by extension means the unvaccinated are responsible for the spread of COVID. If you want to blame someone or something, blame the virus and the makers of it. As everybody knows, it was not the bats.

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The problem is not the unvaccinated, but rather those spawning division among the population. It’s the BLAME GAME.

They shake their fingers in the face of millions of Alabama citizens for refusing to take the vaccine and are beside themselves when everyone does not fall in line like sheep. I guess the unvaccinated are the “New Deplorables.”

I’ve listened to their shaming long enough and felt it was time to stand up for millions of Alabamians that have made their decision, over the many months, NOT to take the vaccine. I fall into this category; however, like most families I have family members that have chosen TO take the vaccine. Alabamians know full well what is going on in their communities, local hospitals, nursing homes and churches. They are not ignorant to the medical realities and associated risks. Neither are they reckless or selfish.

Every unvaccinated person has considered whether to take the vaccine for months. They have discussed the matter with others, prayed about it and even may have tolled back and forth on the decision. In the end, their “call” was to not take the vaccine for their own personal reasons. I can’t help but wonder why so many vaccinated people lecture everyone else when they themselves have marginal health risk as they are the vaccinated class.

Has it occurred to them that their shaming is certain to follow children into the classroom in the form of bullying? Do they care about young women in childbearing years who are rightfully cautious about what goes into their bodies? It’s ironic that people that CHOOSE NOT to take the vaccine are labeled dissenters even though they are the majority in Alabama and cross all races and political lines.

Going forward I want to encourage people to take a deep breath and stand back from the situation. COVID, of course can be lethal, but at the same time the odds of fatality are extremely low. This is one of those times when we must not succumb to fear. Fear is the root from which anxiety and worry bud.

Fear is a weapon used to manipulate the public, and the press is its enabler. The Lord speaks to the issue of fear through the Apostle Paul. “For God hath not given a spirit of fear but of power and sound mind” – 2 Timothy 1:7

I also would like to take this opportunity to say something about Governor Ivey’s statement last week concerning unvaccinated Alabamians. She said, “It’s time to start blaming the unvaccinated folks, not the regular folks. It’s the unvaccinated folks that are letting us down.”

The unvaccinated people represent approximately 60% of the population in our state. The Governor’s comments triggered uncontrollable elation and gaiety from politicians and news anchors at CNN, NBC and others. As one could expect, President Biden and Dr. Fauci were ecstatic at Alabamians being scolded by their Governor over this issue. I believe the Governor’s comments were off-base. I also believe she likely misspoke in the heat of the moment; something any of us could do. As we navigate forward, we need to lower the tone and not take the bait of those whose goal is to sow seeds of division amongst Alabamians.

I have a message for the American press corps concerning their hysterical, fear-based coverage of the pandemic.

It’s a quote from Edward R. Murrow, the great broadcast journalist during the first half of the 20th century.

He effectively warned his fellow journalists what would happen if the free press became compromised. He wrote: “No one can terrorize a whole nation unless we are his accomplices.”

Tim James, the son of former Gov. Fob James, is a Greenville, Alabama businessman. He was a 2010 GOP candidate for governor.

8 hours ago

Regions names Jason Isbell senior vice president of state government affairs and economic development

Regions Bank has tapped one of the state’s foremost experts on banking law and government affairs to serve as senior vice president of state government affairs and economic development.

Jason Isbell comes to the Birmingham-based bank brandishing nearly two decades of legal and government affairs experience in the public and private sectors.

Elizabeth Taylor, head of government affairs and economic development for Regions, highlighted Isbell’s depth of knowledge and relationships throughout the industry.

“Regions Bank has a strong history of working with government leaders and other stakeholder groups on issues impacting our associates, customers and communities,” Taylor said in a statement to Yellowhammer News. “Jason Isbell brings a wealth of knowledge and experience on a variety of financial services matters to this role. His work building relationships and navigating a myriad of legislative issues will serve us well. We look forward to his service advancing economic development opportunities that move our communities forward while also building on the strong relationships we have in the areas Regions serves.”

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Isbell most recently worked with Maynard Cooper & Gale where he represented a wide array of clients, including Regions, as an attorney and lobbyist in the firm’s Government Solutions Group.

Prior to his time at Maynard Cooper, he held the position of vice president for legal and governmental affairs at the Alabama Bankers Association (ABA). Isbell was charged with implementing ABA’s legislative and regulatory agendas at both the state and federal levels. He honed his skills in public policy during his 11 years in state government, first as a fiscal analyst for the Alabama Legislative Fiscal Office and then as general counsel to the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Isbell is a member of the Faulkner University board of trustees and is a graduate of the school’s Thomas Goode Jones School of Law.

Regions Financial Corporation recently reported $748 million in second quarter earnings. The company cited strategic decisions in high-growth areas, such as Florida, Texas and Tennessee, as contributing to those earnings.

Isbell noted the momentum of the bank’s growth and influence throughout its footprint as he prepares for this new endeavor.

“I’m excited to represent an institution with such a rich history and stellar reputation,” he told Yellowhammer News. “Regions Bank is poised to continue making a positive impact on communities in Alabama and beyond. I’m grateful for this opportunity and look forward to being part of the Regions team.”

Isbell is set to officially join the bank in mid-August.

RELATED: Joia M. Johnson appointed to Regions board of directors

Tim Howe is an owner of Yellowhammer Multimedia

9 hours ago

State Rep. Wes Allen: Biden administration’s mixed message on COVID shows he doesn’t put Americans first

The Biden administration is issuing warnings to Americans regarding the increasing number of COVID cases across the country. Calls for a return to mask-wearing and social distancing are becoming more frequent from the President and his advisors.

Businesses, large and small, fear the possibility of mandated shutdowns that plagued our nation last year. Parents are wondering if they will be forced to face the inadequacies and challenges of remote schooling again. These are all worries that are being forced upon law-abiding, tax-paying Americans by the Biden administration.

But it goes further. Our northern border with Canada remains closed to non-essential travel for fear of spreading the virus. Biden and his team cited concerns over the Delta variant as the reason for banning travel from 26 nations including most of Europe, South Africa and Brazil.

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This all seems like a concerned President who is trying to save our nation from the death and damage of a pandemic. But a closer look at Biden’s policies proves that his concern is not for Americans and he has little to no desire to stop the spread of COVID from coming across our border.

His policy that allows thousands of illegal immigrants to move freely across our southern border and into our towns, neighborhoods, restaurants and schools without any regard for their immigration status or their COVID test results prove that the Biden administration doesn’t care about America or Americans. Is the health of Americans, the success of our economy and the fate of our schools and health care system of any concern to this President or his advisors?

I think not.

State Rep. Wes Allen is a Republican candidate for Alabama Secretary of State.

10 hours ago

Alabama League of Municipalities launches Economic Development Academy

The Alabama League of Municipalities (ALM) on Thursday announced the creation of its Economic Development Academy, which will partner with local leaders in an educational capacity to offer their assistance regarding business and industry recruitment practices.

Developed in conjunction with the Alabama Community College System (ACCS) and supported by an advisory council of industry leaders, the Academy will engage local leaders and help them further understand their role in the economic development process.

The Academy is specifically designed to educate and engage municipal officials and designated community business leaders on best practices and strategies for successful economic and community development. Additionally, the ALM says the Academy will focus on the role of elected officials regarding evaluating abatements, legal processes and implications, correctly marketing the community, gaging the community’s expectations, workforce development as well as other key aspects of the development process.

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ALM says the Academy is unique from other economic development programs in that it is tailored to municipal officials using a team model. The mayor or another designated elected or administrative official and at least two council members are required to participate from each community to form a team of up to five members.

In promoting the new program, ALM executive director Greg Cochran conveyed the importance of economic development efforts that take place at the local level.

“Our organization is pleased to collaborate with the Alabama Community College System and Neal Wade to launch the ALM Economic Development Academy,” said Cochran. “It is our goal for the Academy to develop intentional programming and identify resources to empower our municipal officials so they can create legacy programs and projects within their cities and towns. Municipalities are the foundation of our state’s economy, and it is the League’s mission to provide our members the necessary tools to build a community where citizens can live, work, play and prosper and where businesses can thrive.”

The Academy will take place over a full year and consists of an orientation; four one-day sessions that include community assignments; and a special graduation ceremony. To graduate, participants must conduct an economic vitality survey of their communities; complete a community assessment/project; and attend all sessions.

At the conclusion of the year-long program, graduates will be presented a certificate of municipal economic development from the League and ACCS.

Neal Wade, former head of the Alabama Development Office as well as a consultant for Alabama Power, The St. Joe Company and the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, has been tapped to develop the Academy’s curriculum and conduct the classes.

“The objective is for Alabama communities to be the best they can be and competitive for growth and new revenue,” Wade said. “Setting realistic expectations for each community will be foremost.”

In addition to working with Wade, the League has developed a partnership with ACCS to provide classroom space and workforce development resources for Academy participants. The four mandatory sessions for selected municipalities will be conducted at ACCS campuses throughout the state based on each region.

Chancellor Jimmy Baker praised the partnership and expressed his optimism on the potential growth opportunities he believes can stem from the Academy.

“At Alabama’s community colleges, everything we do is workforce development – from education and training to providing wraparound services and hosting community events,” Baker said. “We are honored to work alongside the Alabama League of Municipalities to launch the Economic Development Academy and host its participants at our campuses across the state. Education is so often the linchpin to positive change and the resources and training this effort will provide will have a positive impact on Alabama for years to come.”

An Academy Advisory Council has been developed to add input, assist with training and provide additional resources to the process. The Council consists of state and federal government agencies, ACCS presidents, utility partners, League strategic partners, local economic developers and statewide business associations.

Academy applications will be accepted via the League’s website July 29 – August 31. Applicants will be thoroughly evaluated and candidates chosen by mid-September. There is a community fee to participate.

Those interested in attending the Academy may apply via online application at almonline.org.

Dylan Smith is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanSmithAL