Along With Many Other Disasters, the Gilroy Massacre and the El Paso and Dayton Shootings Within 24 Hours Are a Part of That Dismantling or Judgment and We Are All to Blame. So Called Church Leaders, Pastors, and Preachers, Both Black and White, Have Failed America by not praying for the salvation of lost sinners, our government leaders and for our country, Not Proclaiming the Gospel, Preaching the Truth, and Not Speaking Truth to Power, that is to President Obama and President Trump. (And by the Way, Every Pastor, Preacher or Evangelist who has signed a non-disclosure agreement for President Obama or President Trump, you are effectively a Judas to Christ, the church, and America and you are no longer a preacher of the Gospel, whether you think so or not. God’s preachers do not sign non-disclosure agreements. Can you imagine Isaiah or Jeremiah signing a non-disclosure agreement? When you sign a non-disclosure agreement with the President so that you can be invited to the Christmas party, you cannot be a Nathan who publicly says to the President “Thou art the man” and “retain thine integrity.” I will not reveal who you are, but God knows who you are and you know who you are.) President Obama and President Trump Have Failed America by Allowing the Government to Sanction Homosexuality and Homosexual Marriage Among Other Evils, and Yes those other evils Include Both of Them Playing the Race Card for Their Own Political Advantage and We the People Put Them in Office. (By the Way, Racism Is Not America’s Main Sin or Problem. It Is the Easy Wicked Sin That We, Both Black and White, and Others Like to Pull Out and Use for Our Political, Social, and Financial Advantage) As I have been preaching for years, the race problem was solved in my heart and life on December 19, 1979 when I accepted Christ as my Lord and Saviour, and that is the only way the race problem will be solved in anyone’s life whether they be black, white, red, yellow, or brown. But again, the white church and black church have failed America in not proclaiming the Gospel faithfully. So We’re All to Blame, Red, Yellow, Black, Brown, and White. So Let Me Give Everyone a Fair Warning. The Carnage That We Have Seen Over the Past Week in Gilroy, California, El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, Will Continue Unabated Unless the Church Repents First of Its Evil and Starts Doing Its Job by Reaching the Lost by Any Means Necessary.
TEXT: 1 Timothy 2:1-8
1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;
2 For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;
4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.
7 Whereunto I am ordained a preacher, and an apostle, (I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not;) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity.
8 I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.
Christians in America today are rightly concerned about the direction of our nation. This is not strange. Believers of all ages have had to wrestle with societies that seem to be moving further and further away from God. The worst of those societies, such as that of Medieval Europe, moved into paganism, idolatry, and permissive sin under the supposed auspices of “the Church.” However, the Christians of yesteryear knew something that Christians in America today seem to have forgotten: godliness in public society can only be regained by inner spiritual transformation, not outward social reform. As we sit in the first quarter of what will be yet another long and rancorous national election season, Christians of both political persuasions are already gearing up to throw their time, money, and labor into work that they believe will bring godliness and Christian influence back to public policy and public life in America. However, if we are to make America godly again, we must operate by a different playbook — a playbook that is given to us in this passage from First Timothy — not the playbook of politics, but the playbook of prayer.
So, that is what we are going to talk about for the next few weeks. But, first, let’s look at some background information regarding Paul’s letter to Timothy and this passage in particular.
Dr. Warren Wiersbe provides us with the following description of Timothy and his relationship with the Apostle Paul: “Timothy was a young man who responded to Christ’s call to help build His church. He was one of the Apostle Paul’s special assistants. Along with Titus, Timothy tackled some of the tough assignments in the churches that Paul had founded. Timothy was brought up in a religious home and had been led to faith in Christ by Paul himself. This explains why Paul called Timothy ‘my own son in the faith.’ Timothy was born of mixed parentage: his mother was a Jewess, his father a Greek. He was so devoted to Christ that his local church leaders recommended him to Paul, and Paul added him to his missionary staff. Paul often reminded Timothy that he was chosen for this ministry. Timothy was faithful to the Lord and had a deep concern for God’s people.
“But in spite of his calling, his close association with Paul, and his spiritual gifts, Timothy was easily discouraged. The last time Paul had been with Timothy, he had encouraged him to stay on at Ephesus and finish his work. Apparently Timothy had physical problems as well as periods of discouragement; and you get the impression that some of the church members were not giving their pastor the proper respect as God’s servant.
“Ephesus would not be the easiest place to pastor a church. The city was devoted to the worship of Diana, the patroness of the sexual instinct. Her lascivious images helped promote sexual immorality of all kinds. Paul had done a great work in Ephesus during his three-year ministry, so ‘all they which dwelt in [the province of] Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus.’ It was not easy for Timothy to follow a man like Paul! Of course, Satan had his workers in the city; for wherever there are spiritual opportunities there are also satanic obstacles.
“Paul wrote the letter we call 1 Timothy to encourage Timothy, to explain how a local church should be managed, and to enforce his own authority as a servant of God.”
America, the country once described as a “shining city on a hill,” is much like the city of Ephesus today. Sexual immorality has grown rampant and has infected the church. Satan is at work in the church and the world. In fact, Satan might be busier in the church than he is in the world. Many pastors, like Timothy, are growing weary and discouraged. Those who preach the whole counsel of God are pushed to the side in favor of speakers who will tickle people’s ears and make them feel good. With the church in the state that it is in, it is easy to see why so many Christians are discourage by the state the country is in. But their is a solution to the ills of our society; that solution starts with prayer.
Margaret Cagle wrote:
Devout Christians sailed from Europe
To worship God freely in a new land.
As they started various colonies here,
They were led by God’s divine hand.
God blessed this humble new nation
As leaders sought to follow His plan,
And the citizens wanted each leader
To be a wise, Godly Christian man.
Over the decades our dear nation
From almighty God has gone astray.
In our schools, Bibles aren’t welcome,
And it is against the rules to pray.
How can a great nation so abundantly
Blessed so much by God’s great love
Seem to forget about honoring God,
Who is still on His throne above?
America, please do not forget God.
This could bring a great downfall.
Let us repent and turn back to Him.
Upon His holy name, let us call.
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
Now, if you are with us today, and you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour, your first prayer needs to be what we call the Sinner’s Prayer. First, please understand that you are a sinner, just as I am, and that you have broken God’s laws. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on trusting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. You have done the most important thing in life. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door, by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
The Lost Souls of Black Folk and White Folk
3 Killed by Gunman at Gilroy Garlic Festival in California
GILROY, Calif. (AP) — Before a 19-year-old gunman opened fire on a famed garlic festival in his California hometown, he urged his Instagram followers to read a 19th century book popular with white supremacists on extremist websites, but his motives for killing two children and another young man were still a mystery Monday.
Santino William Legan posted the caption about the book “Might is Right,” which claims race determines behavior. It appeared with a photo of Smokey the Bear in front of a “fire danger” sign and also complained about overcrowding towns and paving open space to make room for “hordes” of Latinos and Silicon Valley whites.
In his last Instagram post Sunday, Legan sent a photo from the Gilroy Garlic Festival. Minutes later, he shot into the crowd with an AK-47 style weapon, killing a 6-year-old boy, a 13-year-old girl and a man in his mid-20s .
Under it, he wrote: “Ayyy garlic festival time” and “Come get wasted on overpriced” items. Legan’s since-deleted Instagram account says he is Italian and Iranian.
The postings are among the first details that have emerged about Legan since authorities say he appeared to fire at random, sending people running and diving under tables. Police patrolling the event responded within a minute and killed Legan as he turned the weapon on them.
The gunman legally purchased the semi-automatic assault rifle this month in Nevada, where his last address is listed. He would have been barred from buying it in California, which restricts firearms purchases to people over 21. In Nevada, the age limit is 18.
Hundreds of people came out Monday night for a candlight vigil in front of City Hall in honor of those killed and injured.
“We cannot let the bastard that did this tear us down,” Mayor Roland Velasco declared to cheers.
Legan grew up less than a mile from the park where the city known as the “Garlic Capital of the World” has held its three-day festival for four decades, attracting more than 100,000 people with music, food booths and cooking classes.
Authorities were looking for clues, including on social media, as to what caused the son of a prominent local family to go on a rampage. His father was a competitive runner and coach, a brother was an accomplished young boxer and his grandfather had been a supervisor in Santa Clara County.
Police said they don’t know if people were targeted, but at this point, it appears he shot indiscriminately. Twelve people were injured.
Police searched Legan’s vehicle and the two-story Legan family home, leaving with paper bags. Authorities also searched an apartment they believed Legan used this month in remote northern Nevada. Officials didn’t say what they found.
Big Mikes Gun and Ammo, which appears to be a home-based internet gun shop in Fallon, Nevada, said on its Facebook page that Legan ordered the rifle off its website and “was acting happy and showed no reasons for concern” when the store owner met him. The post said it was “heartbroken this could ever happen.”
In California, police had training in how to respond to an active shooter. While they prepared for the worst, they never expected to use those skills in Gilroy, a city of about 50,000 about 80 miles (176 kilometers) southeast of San Francisco known for the pungent smell of its prize flowering crop grown in the surrounding fields — garlic.
The city had security in place for one of the largest food fairs in the U.S. It required people to pass through metal detectors and have their bags searched. Police, paramedics and firefighters were stationed throughout the festival.
But Legan didn’t go through the front entrance. He cut through a fence bordering a parking lot next to a creek, Gilroy Police Chief Scot Smithee said. Some witnesses reported a second suspect, and authorities were trying to determine if he had any help.
Police arrested a 20-year-old man who claimed involvement online, but investigators determined he was just trying to get attention.
The police chief praised officers for stopping Legan with handguns without injuring anyone else.
“It could’ve gotten so much worse, so fast,” Smithee said.
The gunfire sent people in sunhats and flip-flops running away screaming. Some dove for cover under the decorated food booth tables. Others crawled under a concert stage, where a band had started playing its last song.
The youngest victim, Stephen Romero, described by his grandmother as a kind, happy and playful kid, had just celebrated his sixth birthday in June at Legoland in Southern California.
“My son had his whole life to live and he was only 6,” his father, Alberto Romero, told San Francisco Bay Area news station KNTV after the shooting.
Also killed was 13-year-old Keyla Salazar from San Jose, seen dressed in pink, wearing a tiara of flowers and smiling as she poses with relatives in photos posted on her aunt’s Facebook page.
“I have no words to describe this pain I’m feeling,” Katiuska Pimentel Vargas wrote.
The oldest victim killed was Trevor Irby, 27, a biology major who graduated in 2017 from Keuka College in upstate New York.
The wounded were taken to multiple hospitals, and their conditions ranged from fair to critical, with some undergoing surgery.
Troy Towner said his sister, Wendy Towner, was at the festival for her business, the Honey Ladies, when she saw a man with a gun climb over the fence. She yelled at him: “No, you can’t do that!”
The gunman shot her in the leg and her husband three times, while a young girl dragged their 3-year-old son under a table, Towner wrote on a fundraising page he set up for his sister.
Legan then approached the couple as they lay motionless on the ground and asked if they were all right. They didn’t move, fearing he would finish them off, Towner wrote.
Towner said his sister underwent surgery and was expected to have long-term nerve damage, while her husband faces many surgeries.
Candice Marquez, who works for Wendy Towner and her husband, Francisco, told The Associated Press that she had stepped away to go to the bathroom and saw the gunman heading to their tent. She said her 10-year-old niece helped the toddler to safety.
“She was brave,” Marquez said.
Jan Dickson, a neighbor who lives across the street from the Legan family, described them as “a nice, normal family.” She said Santino Legan had not lived there for at least a year.
“How do you cope with this? They have to deal with the fact that their son did this terrible thing and that he died,” Dickson said.
Watson reported from San Diego. Associated Press reporter Mike Balsamo in Washington, Natalie Rice in Los Angeles, Scott Sonner in Hawthorne, Nevada, Ken Ritter in Las Vegas, and Martha Mendoza in Gilroy contributed to this report.
Source: Associated Press
20 Dead, More Wounded After Gunman Attacks Texas Shoppers
EL PASO, Texas (AP) — A gunman armed with a rifle opened fire in an El Paso shopping area packed with as many as 3,000 people during the busy back-to-school season, leaving 20 dead and more than two dozen injured, police said.
Hours later, there was another mass shooting across the country. Police in Dayton, Ohio, said nine people were killed by a shooter who was shot to death by responding officers.
Authorities are investigating the possibility the Saturday shooting in El Paso was a hate crime, working to confirm whether a racist, anti-immigrant screed posted online shortly beforehand was written by the man arrested in the attack on the 680,000-resident border city.
Despite initial reports of possible multiple gunmen, the man in custody is believed to be the only shooter, police said. Two law enforcement officials who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity identified him as 21-year-old Patrick Crusius. Authorities didn’t release his name at a news conference but said the gunman was arrested without police firing any shots and is from Allen, which is a nearly 10-hour drive from El Paso.
Many of the victims were shot at a Walmart, according to police, who provided updates about the shooting in English and Spanish in the largely Latino city. The shopping area is about 5 miles (8 kilometers) from the main border checkpoint with Ciudad Juárez, Mexico.
“The scene was a horrific one,” said El Paso Police Chief Greg Allen, adding that many of the 26 people who were hurt had life-threatening injuries.
The shooting came less than a week after a 19-year-old gunman killed three people and injured 13 others at the popular Gilroy Garlic Festival in California before dying of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Adriana Quezada said she was in the women’s clothing section of the Walmart in El Paso with her two children when she heard gunfire.
“But I thought they were hits, like roof construction,” Quezada, 39, said of the shots.
Her 19-year-old daughter and 16-year-old son threw themselves to the ground, then ran out of the store through an emergency exit. They were not hurt, Quezada said.
Relatives said a 25-year-old woman who was shot while apparently trying to shield her 2-month-old son was among those killed, while Mexican officials said three Mexican nationals were among the dead and six more were wounded.
Ryan Mielke, a spokesman for University Medical Center of El Paso, said 13 of the injured were brought to the hospital with injuries, including one who died. Two of the injured were children who were transferred to El Paso Children’s Hospital, he said.
Eleven other victims ages 35 to 82 were being treated at Del Sol Medical Center, hospital spokesman Victor Guerrero said.
Residents quickly volunteered to give blood to the injured. President Donald Trump tweeted: “God be with you all!”
Democratic presidential candidate and former Texas congressman Beto O’Rourke, who is from El Paso and was at a candidate forum Saturday in Las Vegas, appeared shaken after receiving news of the shooting in his hometown.
He said he heard early reports that the shooter might have had a military-style weapon, saying we need to “keep that (expletive) on the battlefield. Do not bring it into our communities.”
El Paso Mayor Dee Margo said police were investigating whether a document posted online shortly before the shooting was written by Crusius. In it, the writer expresses concern that an influx of Hispanics into the United States will replace aging white voters, potentially turning Texas blue in upcoming elections and swinging the White House to the Democrats.
The writer also is critical of Republicans for what he described as close ties to corporations and degradation of the environment. Though a Twitter account that appears to belong to Crusius included pro-Trump posts praising the plan to build more border wall, the writer of the online document says his views on race predated Trump’s campaign and that any attempt to blame the president for his actions was “fake news.”
Though the writer denied he was a white supremacist, the document says “race mixing” is destroying the nation and recommends dividing the United States into territorial enclaves determined by race. The first sentence of the four-page document expresses support for the man accused of killing 51 people at two New Zealand mosques in March after posting his own screed with a conspiracy theory about nonwhite migrants replacing whites.
Margo said he knew the El Paso shooter was not from the city.
“It’s not what we’re about,” the mayor said at the news conference with Gov. Greg Abbott and the police chief.
In the hours after the shooting, authorities blocked streets near a home in Allen associated with the suspect. Officers appeared to speak briefly with a woman who answered the door of the gray stone house and later entered the residence.
El Paso County is more than 80% Latino, according to the latest census data, and the city, where the mayor said tens of thousands of Mexicans legally cross the border each day to work and shop, has become a focal point of the immigration debate. Trump visited in February to argue that walling off the southern border would make the U.S. safer, while city residents and O’Rourke led thousands on a protest march past the barrier of barbed wire-topped fencing and towering metal slats.
O’Rourke stressed that border walls haven’t made his hometown safer. The city’s murder rate was less than half the national average in 2005, the year before the start of its border fence. Before the wall project started, El Paso had been rated one of the three safest major U.S. cities going back to 1997.
Heidi Beirich, director of the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Intelligence Project, said the El Paso shooting suspect wasn’t on her group’s radar before the shooting. “We had nothing in our files on him,” Beirich wrote in an email.
The shooting was the 21st mass killing in the United States in 2019, and the fifth public mass shooting. Before Saturday, 96 people had died in mass killings in 2019 — 26 of them in public mass shootings.
The AP/USATODAY/Northeastern University mass murder database tracks all U.S. homicides since 2006 involving four or more people killed, not including the offender, over a short period of time regardless of weapon, location, victim-offender relationship or motive. The database shows that the median age of a public mass shooter is 28, significantly lower than the median age of a person who commits a mass shooting of his family.
Since 2006, 11 mass shootings — not including Saturday’s — have been committed by men who are 21 or younger.
Balsamo reported from Orlando, Florida, and Heidgerd from Dallas. Associated Press writers Martha Irvine in Chicago; Eric Tucker and Michael Biesecker in Washington, D.C.; Michael Kunzelman in Silver Spring, Maryland; Michelle L. Price in Las Vegas; Jeff Karoub in Detroit; and Jake Bleiberg in Allen, Texas, contributed. AP data editor Meghan Hoyer also reported from Washington, D.C.
9 Killed in Ohio in Second US Mass Shooting Within 24 Hours
DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — A gunman wearing body armor and carrying extra magazines opened fire in a popular nightlife area of Dayton, Ohio, killing nine and injuring dozens, authorities say, in the second U.S. mass shooting in less than 24 hours.
Dayton police patrolling the area responded in less than a minute to the shooting, which unfolded around 1 a.m. Sunday on the streets of the Oregon District, Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley said at a press conference.
Whaley said if the police had not responded so quickly, “hundreds of people in the Oregon District could be dead today.”
The Oregon District is a historic neighborhood that Lt. Col. Matt Carper described as “a safe part of downtown,” home to entertainment options, including bars, restaurants and theaters.
The gunman, who has not been identified by authorities, was shot to death by responding officers. Whaley said he was carrying a .223-caliber rifle and had additional high-capacity magazines with him. Police believe there was only one shooter, and have not yet identified the suspect or a motive.
At least 26 others are being treated at area hospitals, though no details about their conditions have been released.
Miami Valley Hospital spokeswoman Terrea Little said the hospital had received 16 victims, but she couldn’t confirm their conditions. Kettering Health Network spokeswoman Elizabeth Long said multiple victims from a shooting had been brought to system hospitals, but she didn’t have details on how many.
Nikita Papillon, 23, was across the street at Newcom’s Tavern when the shooting started. She said she saw a girl she had talked to earlier lying outside Ned Peppers Bar.
“She had told me she liked my outfit and thought I was cute, and I told her I liked her outfit and I thought she was cute,” Papillon said. She herself had been to Ned Peppers the night before, describing it as the kind of place “where you don’t have to worry about someone shooting up the place.”
“People my age, we don’t think something like this is going to happen,” she said. “And when it happens, words can’t describe it.”
Tianycia Leonard, 28, was in the back, smoking, at Newcom’s. She heard “loud thumps” that she initially thought was people pounding on a dumpster.
“It was so noisy, but then you could tell it was gunshots and there was a lot of rounds,” Leonard said.
President Donald Trump has been briefed on the shooting and praised law enforcement’s speedy response in a tweet Sunday morning.
Gov. Mike DeWine issued his own statement before 7 a.m., announcing that he’s ordered flags in Ohio remain at half-staff and offered assistance to Whaley.
“Fran and I are absolutely heartbroken over the horrible attack that occurred this morning in Dayton, the statement said. “We join those across Ohio and this country in offering our prayers to victims and their families.”
The FBI is assisting with the investigation. A family assistance center was set up at the Dayton Convention Center.
The Ohio shooting came hours after a young man opened fire in a crowded El Paso, Texas, shopping area, leaving 20 dead and more than two dozen injured. Just days before, on July 28, a 19-year-old shot and killed three people, including two children, at Northern California’s Gilroy Garlic Festival.
Sunday’s shooting in Dayton is the 22nd mass killing of 2019 in the U.S., according to the AP/USA Today/Northeastern University mass murder database that tracks homicides where four or more people were killed — not including the offender. The 20 mass killings in the U.S. in 2019 that preceded this weekend claimed 96 lives.
The shooting in Dayton comes after the area was heavily damaged when tornadoes swept through western Ohio in late May, destroying or damaging hundreds of homes and businesses.
“Dayton has been through a lot already this year, and I continue to be amazed by the grit and resiliency of our community,” Whaley said.
Source: Associated Press