Tag Archive | Paris

I Need A Preacher

French flag

“French Flag” Photo courtesy of François Schnell, Flickr

The news from Paris that spread throughout Europe and across the Atlantic on Friday, November 13th, is still inconceivable, and yet the most horrific truth is that we are only temporarily stunned. We are growing accustomed to a cycle of terrorism while expecting the next attack and watching as our children’s dystopian future materializes. Just two weeks prior to the attacks in Paris, Metrojet Flight 9268 operated by Russian airline Kogalymavia, crashed in the northern Sinai on its way to St. Petersburg, killing 224 people. It is accepted world-wide that the plane crash, like the murderous terrorist attacks in Paris, was a cowardice act of terrorism. Making matters worse, these are two attacks in a month during a fifteen-year timespan that has seen some of the world’s bloodiest terrorism.

We are appalled by the pointless loss of human life, and we find terrorism grotesque while watching people of France suffer needlessly at the hands of brainwashed demonized murderers. We search deep inside our minds for a solution that will put an end to the collective fear and restore order. Possible solutions or quick fixes are easy to find on any news channel or blog post, and opinions vary depending on one’s cultural or political background. But we live in the most divisive time in recent memory. One person’s solution is offensive to another. This disunity exposes our weakness and again the headlines read, “Terrorist attack!” Which city is next?

But when the rhetoric ends and the voices of both corporate and social media — along with political leaders and political hopefuls — fade, we are left to our own thoughts. Many times, we accept begrudgingly the horrifying complexity of a broken humanity and the contradictory, dysfunctional systems it continues to create. Instead of solutions, we are faced with more questions.  As one continues to reflect upon the tragic events in Paris, and the unthinkable terrorist attacks over the past fifteen years, all solutions from a human perspective are short-lived in our minds. It is as if gravity itself pulls any lasting and authentic solutions into a black hole, ripping from us our hope of a peaceful prosperity. How do we make sense of a world that seems to be slipping into a reality in which terrorism is normal?

As Christians, we know right from wrong. As Christians, we know the end of the story. As Christians, we are to rise above these worldly sorrows because we realize that these events are the result of a cursed world, and that we are only saved because of the work of Jesus Christ. But the juxtaposition of our faith in Christ with the reality of what we are experiencing in the world is gut-wrenching, and often so very confusing.

Eighty-nine of the people who were killed during the terrorist attacks were watching a rock concert at the Bataclan Theatre in Paris. Someone in the crowd captured the rock band’s response to the gunfire, and we notice the drummer dive to the ground in fear for his life, and the guitarist standing for a moment in shock before taking shelter. Another camera, in an alley beside the theatre, reveals dozens of people leaving from what seemed to be an emergency exit while gunshots and explosions are heard coming from the inside. Seconds later, people are seen dragging out lifeless victims covered in blood. One can see a man hopping on one leg, as he flees for his life — obviously in agonizing pain — while looking over his shoulder in fear that he is being pursued by these monsters. A few more seconds pass and, on the small road in the narrow alley behind the famous Bataclan Theatre, the camera captures dark blood stains continuing to expand in every direction covering the alley. I say to myself, “this is real,” and my mind processes this new reality one frame at a time.

“This is the new normal,” I whisper to myself.

I think of my wife, my kids, and my church. My mind begins to race with anxiety and fear, realizing all the while that I am not supposed to respond like this. “I’m a child of God, what’s wrong with me?”

Friends, I need a preacher.

Here in the Southern parts of the United States, pastors are often referred to as “Preacher man,” or sometimes simplified to just “Preacher.”  I believe that the office of pastor is a high calling. The pastor is not only responsible for sheep, but must also confront evil head on. The commitment and price one pays to live the life of a pastor is high, but a pastor must be willing to stand up for what is right, and declare the name of Jesus Christ even when our faith is shaken to its foundations. We live in a day when men and woman are ashamed of the Gospel, living as spiritual cowards. A pastor must see through the political correctness of society and be able to identify the real enemy, and remind us of our only champion — Jesus Christ. The pastor does this in such a way that the forefront of his message is always the Gospel of Christ, and yet the pastor must be willing to face the public and private consequences for not mincing words, and for taking a stand against evil. We need fewer politicians, but more preachers.

How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. ~ Romans 10:14-17

I need a preacher. You need a preacher. Preachers aren’t perfect, but they are called to declare a bold message. This nation needs a preacher, and every place where there are human beings on this planet needs a preacher. We need a preacher to declare the mighty and powerful truth that is the Word of God. We need the preacher who stands up when the darkness of evil, pain, and hopelessness begins encamping about the church to remind us of our place in Christ, our hope in Christ, and our future in Christ. Even preachers need a preacher. I need a preacher.

In the 10th chapter of Acts, Peter enters the house of Cornelius who greets Peter with honor by bowing to him. But Peter explains to Cornelius that he’s just a man. Cornelius honors this man of God the only way he knows how. He needed a preacher. Cornelius was given a Word of the Lord, and God knew Cornelius, but Cornelius needed a preacher to lead him and his house through the process of being connected to the church through the baptism of the Holy Ghost. As Peter began to preach, the Holy Ghost filled the place. Cornelius needed a preacher.

There are more people who need to hear about Jesus Christ, and know His blessings and eternal life. Here in America, the entire political structure is a mess. We no longer know who to believe. Politicians lie, and the media lies more. Some of the first posts on YouTube after the Paris attacks were posted by people who believed that the entire Paris event was staged, also known as a “black flag operation.” We call them conspiracy theorists, or tinfoil hat-wearing fools. Yet, some of the most popular YouTube channels with millions of subscribers state that nothing we see in the news is actually real, and we’re all being manipulated by the media. People have invented conspiracy theories for a long time. Twenty years ago the world would have considered these ideas silly, but now millions of people no longer believe their government’s official statements, even concerning these gruesome terrorist attacks. Over the past three years, millions and millions of people are no longer watching news from network news channels or websites. They watch self-proclaiming “truth-experts” claiming to know what’s really going on in the world. While there are some valuable independent news sources online, including insightful YouTube channels, isn’t it strange to anyone that anti-Semitism has come to dominate independent YouTube news from all over the world?  We need a preacher.

The church isn’t much better. While churches are caving to social pressure to accept that which is ungodly, other churches who are preaching against sin are considered fanatics. We need a preacher to remind us that there is a standard. We need a preacher to remind us that we can “do all things through Christ who strengthens us.” (Philippians 4:13)

When the tidal wave of despair raced across the Atlantic carrying the news of hostages, explosions, and the cries of children, I needed a preacher. We all needed a preacher, and for many in this moment of sadness we share with our brothers and sisters in France, one such preacher is Dr. Robert Jeffress, Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church, Dallas, TX.

Dr. Jeffress first acknowledged from his pulpit in Dallas that our hearts and prayers should focus on the victims of the tragic event in Paris, but he didn’t stop there. Dr. Jeffress said…

“I believe it is time to put aside political correctness.”

As a Holy Ghost filled man of God, Dr. Jeffress stated that political correctness is hindering truth, and that it is the leading contributor to normalizing bloodshed and violence. Then, pointing his finger and looking straight into the camera, with no regard for his or his family’s safety, Dr. Jeffress — the preacher — identified the problem with no apology: “The evil religion of radical Islam.”

How could he declare this? How could he be so bold?

Because he knew someone needed to tell the truth. He knew we needed a preacher. I needed a preacher.

If Dr. Jeffress stopped after blaming a particular religion, then he is nothing more than a religious figure, and in today’s paradigm, one could also assume that he is a pseudo-political figure, simply stating ideas from his perspective. In other words, there are Buddhists who dislike radical Islam, and there are Muslims that hate radical Islam. But Dr. Jeffress does not stop by blaming a religion. Dr. Jeffress declares that the Islamic religion is not an alternate way to God, but rather it is a Satanic campaign. Dr. Jeffress does this by comparing Jesus’ statements concerning Satan to the terrorists that attacked Paris and their agenda, demonstrating the similarities between the Islamic agenda and Satan’s agenda….

The thief (Satan) comes only to steal and kill and destroy. ~ John 10:10

Dr. Jeffress identifies the Islamic belief structure as the culprit of terrorism, and speaking through the webs of lies and deceit spun by a politically correct media, he addressed the truth about what is actually in the Quran, rather than the lies that are made up about the Quran. Dr. Jeffress does so by comparing the New Testament to the Quran, reminding us that nowhere in the New Testament are Christians told to kill other people, while Muslims are instructed to kill infidels in at least thirty-five places in the Quran. Then Dr. Jeffress compares Mohammed to Christ, and in doing so, the Gospel of Jesus Christ begins to unfold in his message. The preacher always points us to Christ, not his own agenda or personal crusade. The preacher always reminds us of God’s truth when we are surrounded by humanity’s lies. Dr. Jeffress is a preacher for when I need a preacher, when the world needs a preacher, and when our country needs a preacher.

Yes, nations need a preacher too. Dr. Jeffress makes it clear that nations have a different set of responsibilities than the individual. “Government is never called upon to turn the other cheek,” Dr. Jeffress preached. “The government, according to the Word of God, is to protect its citizens.” France needs a preacher. We need a preacher.

When a man or woman is on death’s bed, they often cry out for the preacher. Drug addicts, thieves, and murderers need preachers. But your neighbor needs a preacher as well. The clerk in the store you visit almost daily needs a preacher. Your barber needs a preacher, and your doctor and lawyer need a preacher. Is God speaking to your heart? Not only do you need a preacher, but there are times you need to be the preacher. You need to be able to carry on the good fight when those around you are in despair. There are times you need to be the first hand someone shakes when they enter church for the first time, Better yet, maybe they are shaking your hand as your enter their home to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ for the first time.

While we do not know what tomorrow will bring, we know that we need Christ for every breath of hope we aspire to obtain, and we need a preacher pointing us to Christ, reminding us of our blessed hope. I know that right now in this very second, there is a preacher somewhere in France who may feel forgotten, and that the whole ministry has been a joke. If that is you, you need to know that you were born for such a time as this! You need to stand up and declare…

Il ya de l’espoir dans le Christ Jésus.

I declare revival to come forth in every corner of France from the ashes of this horrendous tragedy.

I believe and declare that it will begin with a preacher.

Vive La France!

This blog post is from the blog of my son, Dr. Ronnie Phillips, Jr. You can check out and follow his blog by clicking HERE.

As The World Burns…

Burning EarthAs I sit here watching the Middle East and Europe burn in a blaze that is rapidly moving this direction, I am baffled…

It is beyond my understanding how any Christian of any race could support the leaders of our government who refuse to acknowledge the Islamic fanatics and their fiendish goals toward the world.

When a Muslim with ties to Al-Qaeda opened fire in Fort Hood, killing 13 brave servicemen-and-women, this administration categorized it as “workplace violence.”

When a kosher deli in Paris was viciously attacked, and four Jews were murdered by a shooter who had pledged support to ISIS, our president referred to it as an “act of random violence.”

Recently, at a press conference, Attorney General Eric Holder sarcastically chastised Fox News for its criticism of the administration’s unwillingness to invoke the terms “Islamic” or “radical Islam” when discussing terror attacks. He said…

“The terminology has, it seems to me, little or no impact on ultimately what we have to do.”

Well, Mr. Holder, I think any military strategist (or second-grade football coach, for that matter) will tell you that properly identifying your enemy is the first step in defeating him. Correctly diagnosing any problem is the first step to solving it. You are going to have a hard time getting healed of cancer if, when you go to the doctor, he refers to your condition as a “broken toe”, and treats you according to that diagnosis. Ancient Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu said…

If ignorant both of your enemy and yourself, you are certain to be in peril… If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the results of a hundred battles.

And now, as the president’s Summit on Extremism gets under way, the phrases that have, basically, been discouraged from the summit???

Radical Islam and Islamic Extremism.

Coptic ChristiansThis White House has been immune to criticism because its critics are wrongly called racists — those who point out the president’s refusal to defend Christians, Jews, or their values. Whether citing climate change as the greatest threat against our world, or rushing in to talk about street crime in America’s cities, this administration has done precious little about the threat of groups like ISIS and their horrific acts — like the recent beheadings of 21 Egyptian Christians (Christians, Mr. President — not citizens). Dare we speak of the slaughter of tens of thousands of black Christians in the Sudan, Libya, and Somalia. And while this administration supports abortion on demand, gay marriage, and just about every other ungodly, liberal cause you can imagine, the world continues to burn.

In the Book of Esther, there was an ungodly man named Haman in a position of power whose desire it was to slaughter the Jewish people. Yet, in the face of this evil, a young queen named Esther risked everything to defend her people. When faced with the decision whether or not to take a stand, her cousin Mordecai told her…

“For if you remain completely silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” ~ Esther 4:14

As our leaders stand in Washington, wringing their hands and mincing their words, leaders in countries like Jordan and Egypt are taking decisive action against these acts of terror. Leaders in countries like France are making bold declarations with regard to the growing threat of anti-Semitism.

However, more than on the political stage…

RP & PauletteHow silent can the pulpits of America remain in the face of war looming in Russia and the Middle East? Pastors white, African-American, Asian-American, and Hispanic must stand on the side of the Bible in opposing evil, abortion, homosexuality, and the genocide of Christians, as well as stand in unwavering solidarity with God’s people – Israel.

Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin. ~ James 4:17

We as Christians — pastors and laymen alike — will give an account to God for how we live, and upon what side of the issues we stand. Pastors, however, will be held to a higher standard…

My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment. ~ James 3:1


CrossFor pastors, the time is long past for complacency and “milk-toast” Christianity. It is time to stand squarely on the Word of God, rightly-divide His Word, and be a voice of salvation, truth, and hope instead of political correctness and cowardice. Pastors – if you are more concerned with being relevant than righteous, or “hip” than holy, you are probably in the wrong line of work. We don’t preach from the book of the month… we are guided by the Book of the Ages!

It takes courage to stand in the face of overwhelming evil.

It takes courage to say no when everyone else is saying yes.

It takes courage to face off against the giant.

It takes courage to stare into the mouth of the angry furnace.

You, my friends, have been put here for such a time as this.

It is time to stand.

Pastor Ron