“Therefore behold, I am going to make them know—this time I will make them know My power and My might; and they shall know that My Name is Yahweh.” (Jeremiah 16: 21)
Pope Francis is a Hypocrite
At this point, the most compassionate thing I can say about Pope Francis is that he has some form of foot-in-the-mouth disease. I don’t think that’s the case, so he must be suffering from a more severe malady.
An article in CNN titled “Pope Francis on Trump: Building walls instead of bridges ‘is not Christian’” will help me explain what I mean:
Thrusting himself into the combative 2016 presidential campaign, Pope Francis said Thursday that GOP frontrunner Donald Trump “is not Christian” if he calls for the deportation of undocumented immigrants and pledges to build a wall between the United States and Mexico.
The Pope, who was traveling back to Rome from Mexico, where he urged the United States to address the “humanitarian crisis” on its southern border, declined to say whether American Catholics should vote for Trump.
But Francis left little doubt where he stood on the polarizing issue of immigration reform.
“A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian. This is not in the gospel,” the Pope told journalists who asked his opinion on Trump’s proposals to halt illegal immigration.
Trump immediately fired back on Thursday, calling Francis’ comments “disgraceful.”
“No leader, especially a religious leader, should have the right to question another man’s religion or faith,” he said in statement. Trump added that the government in Mexico, where Pope spent the past five days, has “made many disparaging remarks about me to the Pope.”
Thanks to the pope, Donald Trump’s stock is rising in my book.
Part of me wants to say that the pope should stick to things he understands, but another part of me says that if he did that, he wouldn’t have much to say.
Trump will be glad to know that he is in good company. A few months ago, Pope Francis said, “It makes me think of … people, managers, businessmen who call themselves Christian and they manufacture weapons. That leads to a bit of distrust, doesn’t it?”
Like anyone else, the pope is entitled to his opinions, but when you wear a big hat and chirp from a high and mighty perch, you need to make sure that you don’t sound like a hypocrite.
Below is a picture of Pope Francis. Notice all the men in suits surrounding his vehicle. Every one of them is carrying a weapon.
A couple of years ago, Katie and I were in Jerusalem while the pope was in town. We did our best to avoid him, but we couldn’t. When our paths finally crossed, he was in a motorcade. His car was protected by several well-armed vehicles, and the streets were lined with soldiers carrying automatic weapons.
Below is a picture that Katie took as the pope drove by. It was taken just outside the Dung Gate to the Old City. That’s the gate that leads to the Western Wall/Kotel and the Temple Mount.
Notice the gun-carrying security personnel standing guard. You can’t see them in the picture, but the street was lined with more security people carrying automatic weapons. The vehicles in front of the pope’s car and those behind it were loaded with well-armed security people.
My point is that the two pictures above don’t begin to tell the whole story. In addition to all the gun-carrying security people that you can see, there were dozens or possibly even hundreds of other gun-toters nearby on rooftops and other places who were ready to fire in an instant if anyone threatened the pope.
From where I sit, the pope sounds a lot like a hypocrite. The Messiah had several things to say about people like him. For instance, in Matthew 23: 13-33, he said,
“But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you shut off the kingdom of heaven from people; for you do not enter in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in. [“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense you make long prayers; therefore you will receive greater condemnation.]
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you travel around on sea and land to make one proselyte; and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves.
Woe to you, blind guides, who say, ‘Whoever swears by the temple, that is nothing; but whoever swears by the gold of the temple is obligated.’ You fools and blind men! Which is more important, the gold or the temple that sanctified the gold? And, ‘Whoever swears by the altar, that is nothing, but whoever swears by the offering on it, he is obligated.’ You blind men, which is more important, the offering, or the altar that sanctifies the offering? Therefore, whoever swears by the altar, swears both by the altar and by everything on it. And whoever swears by the temple, swears both by the temple and by Him who dwells within it. And whoever swears by heaven, swears both by the throne of God and by Him who sits upon it.
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected the weightier provisions of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others. You blind guides, who strain out a gnat and swallow a camel!
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside they are full of robbery and self-indulgence. You blind Pharisee, first clean the inside of the cup and of the dish, so that the outside of it may become clean also.
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. So you, too, outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you build the tombs of the prophets and adorn the monuments of the righteous, and say, ‘If we had been living in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partners with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’ So you testify against yourselves, that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets. Fill up, then, the measure of the guilt of your fathers. You serpents, you brood of vipers, how will you escape the sentence of hell?”
I’ll be brutally frank. The pope doesn’t just sound like a hypocrite. He is a hypocrite.
I’m on solid ground when I make that claim. I’m not chirping from a lofty perch like his. Interestingly, the Messiah was talking about “scribes and Pharisees”. They were religious leaders, too.
The pope started a brouhaha when he shared his opinion about the wall that Trump plans to construct along our border with Mexico. The CNN article that I mentioned earlier quotes the pope as saying, “A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian. This is not in the gospel”
Below is an aerial photo of Vatican City where the pope lives. The walls surrounding it are outlined in the picture. They are high and substantial. Paraphrasing Ronald Reagan, if the pope is honest, he should “tear down that wall”.
There is almost no room for doubt. The pope is a hypocrite. Keep that possibility in mind as things progress. It’s important.
It’s a mystery to me why hypocrites and really arrogant people can’t see their afflictions. I think that’s the pope’s problem.
He’s just like the scribes and Pharisees that the Messiah was talking about. They could see faults in others, but they were blind to their own shortcomings.
Below is a video that I took in May 2014 as Jerusalem was preparing to meet the pope. Several days before he arrived, his presence was felt. The day before he arrived, armed security personnel were taking their positions. If anyone had tried to harm the pope, he or she would have been shot and killed instantly.
In the video, Katie is the woman walking in front of me during several clips. She’s wearing a large hat to keep the sun off of her face. I wasn’t stalking her.
A regular SnyderTalk reader from South Africa contacted me about this editorial and asked me a few questions. Below is part of my response to him:
I was in Israel while the pope was there. If he said anything about the barrier fence in Israel, I didn’t hear about it.
Katie and I did our best to avoid the pope, but we couldn’t. I don’t follow the news while I’m in Israel. I talk with people about what’s actually going on.
I have some interesting stories to tell about the pope’s visit to Israel. Some of them are funny. Others are serious.
This is a funny story. It’s true.
I wanted to know the pope’s itinerary so that Katie and I could stay out of his way. We went to the Vatican compound inside the Old City to meet with a priest. When we arrived, the Israeli officer in charge of security was meeting with the priest to finalize details for all security measures associated with the pope’s visit. Below is a picture of them talking as we walked up.
I apologized for interrupting their meeting, but the priest insisted that we join them. We did.
I explained to the priest that I needed to know where the pope would be and approximate times so that we could do our business in the Old City. We had been told that every entrance to the Old City would be blocked on Sunday and Monday.
For us, that would have been a serious problem. We had a commitment on Monday that couldn’t be rescheduled.
The priest explained that they would randomly close and open gates to the Old City throughout the day on Sunday and Monday. That meant we could move about, but that minor inconvenience should be expected. He went on to say that no one would know exactly where the pope would be at any given time.
The priest must have thought that Katie and I wanted to see the pope in person, so he explained that it was too late to get on a list. Everyone in close proximity with the pope had to be vetted. He said, “If you want to see the pope, you’ll have to watch him on TV.”
I told the priest that I didn’t want to see the pope. I simply wanted to know which gates I could enter and exit while he was in town. Then I said that Katie and I planned our visit before the pope announced his visit. You may recall that the pope announced his visit shortly before it was to take place.
Then I said that if I did meet with the pope, I would like to ask him this question: “How did he know when we would be in town?”
The priest broke out in laughter. The Israeli security officer was laughing so hard that he couldn’t stand up straight.
I couldn’t resist continuing. I said, “I would also like to ask him where I can buy one of those big hats that he wears occasionally.”
At that point, both of them were rolling over in laughter.
It was time for us to move on, so I calmly said, “Thanks for your help. I think we’ll be fine.” We went on our way.
I’ll bet both of them remember that meeting.
Every time I visit Israel, something interesting happens. I have plenty of stories to tell.
To see videos that explain the importance of God’s Name, click here.
Less than four in ten Democrats think of Hillary Clinton as honest and trustworthy compared to her main challenger for the Democratic nomination, according to the latest Washington Post/ABC News poll. Her honesty numbers fell six points in three months, allowing Bernie Sanders to get within twenty points of her for the first time in this series. However, Sanders falls short on other personal characteristics, such as … better personality? Talk about a burn:
Clinton’s single greatest vulnerability has worsened in this poll, produced for ABC by Langer Research Associates: Sanders now leads by 12 points, 48-36 percent, in being seen as more honest and trustworthy, vs. 6 points last month and an even split in October. Should Clinton emerge as the nominee, it’s an issue the Republican candidate likely will repeat at every chance.
Further, the candidates are virtually even, 47-43 percent, Clinton-Sanders, on who “is closer to you on the issues,” down from a 17-point Clinton lead just last month. And it’s close (Clinton +7) on who’d do a better job “bringing needed change to Washington.”
SnyderTalk Comment: Hillary Clinton’s honesty problem is the stuff of legend even among Democrats. I doubt she will ever say it publicly, but she must be disturbed by the obvious double standard.
Her husband is and always has been a notorious liar. Everybody knows it. His most ardent supporters know it better than anyone. They love him for it. Most of them would vote for Bill for president right now if they could.
That’s a classic double standard.
Hillary is going down in flames for doing something that Bill is admired for. I’ll admit that the quality of Bill’s lying is exceptional. If we had a lying contest, I think he would make mincemeat of Barack Obama even though Obama is no slouch. He’s a really good liar, too.
Democrats coined a term to describe their true-blue members. They are called yellow dog Democrats. That means they would vote for a yellow dog against any competitor if the yellow dog was a Democrat.
I have coined a term for Democrats who support Hillary. They are stinking skunk Democrats. That means they would vote for Hillary no matter what even though she lies like a stinking skunk.
I have a dream. In my dream, Hillary is indicted for violating our national security laws on more than 1,700 separate occasions, and she still wins the Democrat Party nomination for president. If that happens, I’ll say that the Democrat Party is the Stinking Skunk Party.
Actually, I am saying that already because it’s true. I also call them the Party of Perversity. That’s true, too.
“Turkey will not shy away from using its right to self-defence at any time, any place or any occasion,” President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said.
Officials said a vehicle full of explosives was detonated as military buses were passing by on Wednesday.
Funerals are expected to take place later on Thursday.
No group has so far said it was behind the attack.
SnyderTalk Comment: Erdogan is claiming a right that he denies Israel—the right to self-defense. Shame on him.
At the University of Virginia, I taught lots of Turkish students. Without exception, they were some of the best students I had. I liked them, and they liked me. They used to sponsor cultural events, and they made sure that I was there. Katie and I visited with one of my former students in Istanbul. She and her family are some of the most gracious people I know.
It pains me to see what Erdogan has done to their country, and it is a beautiful country. In fact, it’s stunning.
Erdogan is no Ataturk. He has been playing both ends from the middle for more than a decade, and now the chickens are coming home to roost.
He deserves it, but the people of Turkey don’t. I fear for the Turkish people I know.
Erdogan has enemies everywhere, but he has a friend in the White House. They are birds of a feather.
2: Jerusalem Post—‘Britain deserves praise for standing beside Mideast’s only democracy’:
Netanyahu salutes UK for publishing anti-boycott regulations; PLO says move perpetuates injustice that began with Balfour Declaration.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently ordered preparations for launching “terror” attacks on South Koreans, a top Seoul official said Thursday, as worries about the North grow after its recent nuclear test and rocket launch.
In televised remarks, senior South Korean presidential official Kim Sung-woo said North Korea’s spy agency has begun work to implement Kim Jong Un’s order to “muster anti-South terror capabilities that can pose a direct threat to our lives and security.”
He said the possibility of North Korean attacks “is increasing more than ever” and asked for quick passage of an anti-terror bill in parliament.
The U.S. anticipates a “very serious conversation” with China in the near future following reports of the Asian power’s apparently increasing military presence in the South China Sea, Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday.
SnyderTalk Comment: What are the three best words to describe Barack Obama and John Kerry?
Answer: Talk, talk, talk.
A desperate hunt for “highly dangerous” radioactive material is on in Iraq, where officials fear it could be used to make a “dirty bomb” if in the hands of ISIS, according to a government official in Baghdad.
SnyderTalk Comment: This quote from Winston Churchill is apropos: “Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.”
This thing is just getting started.
6: Washington Post—Merkel: German ‘national interest’ for UK to remain in EU:
Chancellor Angela Merkel said Wednesday that it’s in Germany’s national interest for Britain to remain in the European Union, and she also pressed her fellow European leaders to work with Turkey to curb the migrant influx.
SnyderTalk Comment: The EU is sinking fast.
7: Daily Caller—Did Israel Just Get Involved In The Syrian Civil War?:
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported Wednesday that three Israeli missiles struck Syrian army outposts near the capital of Damascus.
If the reports are confirmed by the Israeli government, it would mark the first time Israel has been directly involved in the now five-year Syrian civil war. No casualties have been reported thus far, and it appears the missiles have only caused property damage. A pro-Syrian government source has denied the reports to Israel’s Haaretz news outlet.
8: Business Insider—TRUMP: I’ll give solving the Israel-Palestine conflict ‘one hell of a shot’:
Donald Trump said on Wednesday that he’ll give solving the conflict between Israel and Palestine “one hell of a shot.”
During an MSNBC town hall, the Republican presidential candidate said that he had some doubt that he could settle the complex, decades-long conflict between Israelis and Palestinians.
But he said that he wouldn’t hesitate to forge a deal between the two sides if it could be done.
“It is a very, very tough agreement to make,” Trump told “Morning Joe” hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, who were moderating the town hall.
“But I will give it one hell of a shot. That I can tell you. But of all agreements — I would say if you can do that deal, you can do any deal. That’s probably the toughest deal in the world right now to make and it’s possible it’s not make-able,” he continued.
SnyderTalk Comment: Trump MAY be the right man for the right time. Don’t interpret that as an endorsement.
9: Celestine Bohlen—Why Do Terrorists Target Democracies?:
When terrorists attacked the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo last January, the prevailing view in Europe was that their target was freedom of speech, “a key component of our free democratic culture,” as Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany said then.
On Sept. 11, 2001, President George W. Bush had a similar explanation for why the United States had been singled out. “America was targeted for attack because we’re the brightest beacon for freedom and opportunity in the world,” he said in a speech to the nation.
These attacks have been attributed to Islamist extremists, but other attackers have targeted their own societies in more solitary wars: Anders Behring Breivik, obsessed with a hatred for multiculturalism, went on a murderous rampage in Norway in July 2011.
Democracies are not the only target of terrorist groups. Suicide bombings occur with deadly regularity in the Middle East and elsewhere, often in societies that lag far behind the democratic ideal, claiming the overwhelming majority of terrorism’s recent victims.
SnyderTalk Comment: Why do scorpions sting?
Answer: because they are scorpions.
If you think terrorist attacks are scary, wait until you see the backlash.
10: Steven Beller—Is There a Future for Democracy?:
The world is changing faster than ever, and it is unclear whether modern democracy will be able to keep up with the changes. To quote A.J.P. Taylor, ‘nothing is inevitable, until it happens’, and predicting democracy’s future is no exception. In a world where the IT revolution is having profound effects on the economy, society and politics, positive and negative, where inequality in the developed world is on the rise, but where millions in the developing world are rising out of poverty, where Islamic fundamentalism appears on the rise in the Islamic world, but where in other regions there is also an increase in a non-ideological, secular approach, and where over half the world’s population is urban, it is hard to say what opportunities democracy will have, what threats there are to it, and whether its response will be effective. Will the connection between freedom and equality hold, or will it be broken – or will their relationship change under the pressure of new circumstance? Will democracy as we know it – a hybrid of government by elected officials, a free market economy and the rule of law – nevertheless survive in recognizable form?
11: Lee Smith— The Ambassador From Hell?:
Even die-hard supporters of President Barack Obama’s “realist” approach to foreign affairs are nauseated by the White House’s Syria policy. New York Times columnist Roger Cohen, a vocal supporter of the nuclear weapons agreement with Iran, is fed up with nearly five years of the “fecklessness and purposelessness” of a Syria policy that “has become hard to distinguish” from Russian President Vladimir Putin’s. “Syria is now the Obama administration’s shame,” Cohen wrote last week, “a debacle of such dimensions that it may overshadow the president’s domestic achievements.” Ambassador Dennis Ross and New York Times military correspondent David Sanger also published articles excoriating Obama’s policies in Syria. There is a military solution, it’s “just not our military solution,” a senior U.S. security official admitted to Sanger. It’s Putin’s.
Perhaps most damning of the stink-bouquets was a Washington Post op-ed from former New Republic literary editor Leon Wieseltier and Harvard professor Michael Ignatieff. “It is time for those who care about the moral standing of the United States to say that this policy is shameful,” they wrote. “If the United States and its NATO allies allow [Putin and his allies] to encircle and starve the people of Aleppo, they will be complicit in crimes of war.”
SnyderTalk Comment: I couldn’t have said it better myself.
Actually, I did say it myself—many years ago.
But why stop with Syria? Why not talk about Libya, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Turkey, etc. as well?
Obama’s legacy touches every country on the face of the planet.
Obama will be remembered. Who can forget the skunk that invaded the garden party?
12: Jerusalem Post—Why did Nasrallah focus on Israel when Hezbollah is busy in Syria?:
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah checked off all the boxes for harsh anti-Israel rhetoric during his speech, but his aim was to rally Shi’ite support behind him and even try to improve his group’s drab image in the Sunni Arab world.
He sought to embarrass Sunni Arab states by tying them to Israel because of their common goal in opposing Iran’s aggressive goals in the region.
And to hammer home the point that Hezbollah is the one standing up to Israel, not the Sunni Arabs, Nasrallah threatened on Tuesday night to hit large ammonia gas storage tanks in Haifa that he said would wreak damage and casualties equal to a nuclear attack.
“Do you accept a friend occupying Sunni land in Palestine? Can you become friends with an entity that has committed the most horrible massacres against the Sunni community? “You are free to consider Iran an enemy, but how can you consider Israel a friend and an ally? This issue must be confronted in a serious manner,” he said.
“This would be exactly like a nuclear bomb, and we can say that Lebanon today has a nuclear bomb, seeing as any rocket that might hit these tanks is capable of creating a nuclear bomb effect,” he said.
SnyderTalk Comment: Nasrallah is fixated on Israel because his master is fixated on Israel.
Who is Nasrallah’s master?
He doesn’t have horns and a pointed tail, and he doesn’t carry a pitchfork. Cartoons of him show him that way, though.
So, why is Satan fixated on Israel?
Answer: it’s because of Yahweh’s promises and nothing else.
That begs this question: how important is Yahweh’s Word?
Consider this: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.”
So, how important is Yahweh’s Word?
Satan’s days are numbered, and he knows it. That’s the truth.
He really is a monster, but he doesn’t look like one. In other words, the picture below doesn’t do him justice.
SnyderTalk Comment: And bleeding heart liberals in the West, progressives as they like to tell us, said, “To hell with the facts. I have an opinion.”
SnyderTalk Comment: Hillary Clinton may not be one “of the people”, but she sure knows how to fleece the flock.
So does Bill. They deserve each other.
If Hillary’s last name wasn’t Clinton, a fact resulting from her marriage to Bill, she would not be running for president. My guess is that she would be a disgraced former attorney serving time in a federal penitentiary.
I have a dream that one day she will get what she deserves.
Other Books by Neil Snyder
- Stand!: A novel that exposes the lies, corruption, and greed underlying the theory that man-made CO2 emissions are responsible for global warming. Click here to order the eBook. Click here to order the paperback.
- What Will You Do with the Rest of Your Life?: A question that every Christian should consider. Click here to order the eBook. Click here to order the paperback.
- Falsely Accused: A true story about a young woman who was accused of committing a double homicide. Click here to order the eBook. Click here to order the paperback.
“The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me. Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.” (John 17: 22-24)
See “His Name is Yahweh”.