Blocking the Kingdom of Heaven

By Max Blaska

Madison, Wisconsin


PREFACE

Max Blaska is a student in Madison, Wisconsin; he will be reporting on what's happening in the nation's "heartland" on a regular basis for Antipas Ministries. This is his first article.

Max is an example of those unbelievers who have been turned off to Christianity as a result of the hideous testimony of today's evangelical leaders - leaders who have partnered themselves with the super-elite.

Max is also an example of what can happen when Christians stand up against the wretched testimony of these same leaders and who have the courage to label these leaders for what they really are: HYPOCRITES and APOSTATES. Would to God that many of our readers would find it in their heart to reach out to those like Max. That's what Fred and Jim were doing at Occupy Wall Street in NYC; that's what they are doing now in St. Louis and Sacramento. [Please see "Antipas / Fred and Jim In New York," "New Report from New York" and "Sacramento Criminalizes Peaceful Occupy Protest."

That's what we will shortly be doing as we begin our "road trip" around the country - a "road trip" made possible by YOUR prayers and YOUR financial support. [Please see our articles, "As the Time Draws Near" and "Christians: Once Again on the Wrong Side of History."]

-- Antipas

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"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut the door of the kingdom of heaven in people's faces. You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let those enter who are trying to.

"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when you have succeeded, you make them twice as much a child of hell as you are. (Matthew 23:13, 15)

This is my first article for Antipas. I am a 34-year-old student who is going to school [in Madison, Wisconsin] to help children who suffer from mental disorders; I also am a lapsed agnostic and a 3 year old born again Christian. In order to understand where I am coming from, you need to know my story. I grew up Catholic and was very devout until the priest sex scandal. I didn't go to a Protestant church because I saw Pat Robertson, the late Jerry Falwell, President W Bush. I lost my faith about the same time Bush launched the immoral and illegal war against Iraq. I was in the spiritual wilderness for 6 years. I wasn't an atheist, but I was an agnostic. And then in 2008, there was Pulpit Freedom Sunday, a Sunday where right wing apostate preachers talk about right wing apostate politics.

I was at a crossroads, either cross into atheism and God-hating or being born again. I was a seeker, seeking God's truth and love. I wrote about a dozen preachers and televangelists asking why they claim to follow Christ but ignore His teachings. Only one called me back. He asked me if I belonged to a faith community. I said no, I felt like I was an outsider looking in. That night I prayed, the first time, I rarely prayed, other than when I was flying. God reached out and entered my heart and I was baptized by the Holy Spirit and was born again. I heard a choir in the back of my head singing my favorite hymn "Let there be peace on earth" And God lead me to a spirit filled Presbyterian Church that gathers, grows, and goes in Christ.

The reason why I am telling you this is because the religious right is a clear and present danger to true faith, it is like the devil knew he couldn't hurt the church from the outside, Romans martyred Christians by the thousands but the faith was never shaken, so He decided to try to attack it from the inside.

I do believe that we are in the beginning of the end-times so we have a limited window on spreading the glorious good news about salvation and transformation. I also believe that these right wing ideologues are the forerunner to the final Anti-Christ. The definition of antichrist is this 2 John 1:7. I say this because many deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist. What is more anti-Christian than denying his teachings when He was in the flesh?

This is also the greatest irony of the age, the ones that are the loudest about the Anti-Christ and the Whore of Babylon, are members of the idolatrous and fornicating church and setting the stage for Him, although they all believe that they are going to be with Jesus on a cloud watching the carnage and destruction like a movie. They are going to be in for a rude awakening when the Anti-Christ turns on them.

I have atheist friends, I believe that they are lost and that they need Christ, and I share my faith by words and actions, but they are so warped by the portrayal of Christianity, I am afraid that they are lost forever, but that doesn't mean, I am going to stop trying. Jesus ate with sinners and Jesus had compassion. If Michelle Bachmann, Rick Perry, Pat Robertson or any other of their ilk, were eating with Jesus and the woman of sin from Luke 7 came in, they would have the same reaction as Simon the Pharisee.

The media calls them Evangelical; I do not because there is no good news from them, just toxic bile. They also call them fundamentalists, I do not, because the virgin birth, the resurrection are fundamentals of the faith, but so are love, mercy, justice, and humility. So I call them for what they are Apostates.

I will leave you with two examples. I live in Wisconsin where we have the son of a preacher man Scott Walker for a governor and the Sarah Palin wannabe, Rebecca Kleefisch for Lieutenant Governor. His administration ended collective bargaining, made huge cuts in education and health care. And just last week, he made it harder for families of abused seniors in nursing homes from suing. Also Gov. Walker is a puppet of the terrible Koch Brothers.

I was at the Recall Rally Saturday Nov 19th. There were about 30,000 strong; there were about 40 Walker supporters. I walked with them and tried to pray with and for them to no avail. I told them what damage they are doing to God's Kingdom, but they didn't want to hear it, so I started quoting the prophets. I quoted Ezekiel 16: 49 - "now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy."

And Isaiah 1: 23 - "Your rulers are rebels, partners with thieves; they all love bribes and chase after gifts. They do not defend the cause of the fatherless; the widow's case does not come before them."

The only response I got was a finger in my face, screaming, "thou shalt not covet, thou shalt not covet." This is not about coveting it is about justice. The economic elites have been systematically targeting the poor and the middle class and cloaking the inequity with false Christianity.

The 2nd example is when I went to an Occupy Madison event. I was talking to a nice man at the info desk. I talked to him about faith and Christ, and he told me that he went to Catholic Military School and was taught with one hand "thou shall love your neighbor" on another hand and "how to kill your neighbor on the other hand". He didn't go to a church, until 1992, when he was helping an elderly woman go to church. He sat down in the pew, opened a bible, and inside was literature for President George Herbert Walker Bush, and this man made a vow that he was never going to step foot in a church again. This made me want to weep. God gave this man a great opportunity and that church blocked him with politics. I prayed for him and then went back to the rally.

I do believe that God kept me in the wilderness for so long to show me what atheists think about Christ's Church and how to reach out to them and clean up the mess that these idolatrous worshipers of the Whore of Babylon does. And speak up against them.

Thanks be to God I am not alone in this effort.

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God bless you all!

S.R. Shearer
Antipas Ministries


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