“Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, And who desires to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, To God our Savior, Who alone is wise, Be glory and majesty, Dominion and power, Both now and forever. Amen.” Jude 1:24-25 TNT
“He who believes in Jesus Christ is not condemned; but he who does not believe in Him is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name and person of the only begotten Son of God.” John 3:18 (TNT)
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There should be an admission fee just to view these classics.
The artist had to live this life in order to paint these.
To readers of my website, I want to thank you for visiting this site over the past seven years and I pray you have been blessed by some of the articles, pictures etc. I will continue to post articles and pics here on my page while I rework and/or remove some of the other webpages. Being just one week younger than dirt I think it is about time to slow down. God bless each and every one who have visited www.hislightshining.com
Tamara Kolton, A Female Rabbi, Creates Her god In Her Own Image
This is not a total surprise coming from the same publication that ran a piece this week suggesting that Orthodox Jews are the new white supremacists.
The author, Tamara Kolton, is a female rabbi and psychologist in Birmingham, Michigan. She’s also the author of a presumably unreadable soon-to-be-released book, Oranges for Eve: Walking The Way of the Divine Feminine. But if this essay is any indicator, that book will best be used as a doorstop.
Kolton begins her intellectually execrable journey into Biblical exegesis by praising women coming forward to report sexual assault and harassment. That's fine. But then she goes wildly off the rails. In fact, she goes so far off the rails she nearly runs down Harrison Ford, who must jump into a ditch in order to escape the engine of stupidity bearing down upon him, churning the earth in his wake.
As a 47 year-old woman rabbi, I’ve become emboldened by these brave young women to speak a truth that I’ve known in my heart for a long time but have been hesitant to share. The time has come for me to step forward, too. It’s time we all acknowledge an overwhelmingly powerful source of shame and silence — in the bible.
Now, does Kolton cite the usual litany of supposedly anti-feminist verses in the Bible? Of course not. That might make a smidgen of sense. Instead, she goes right to the beginning of the Bible: Adam and Eve.
The story that begins the bible, the first one that we learn in Sunday school, the founding story of man and woman upheld for thousands of years by Judeo-Christian religion, is actually the story of the first sexual assault of a woman. The woman’s name is Eve. And the perpetrator? God.
There are no words.
But let me try to come up with a few anyway: stupid. Asinine. Ridiculous. Ludicrous. Imbecilic. Witless. Obtuse. Fatuous. Harebrained. Doltish. Preposterous.
The story of Adam and Eve has literally nothing to do with sexual assault. It has to do with Eve refusing to obey a Godly command not to eat from a certain tree at the behest of the snake, then telling Adam to do so as well, then lying to God about it. End of story.
But here’s Kolton’s take:
I want you to think about this. Here is a young, beautiful, intelligent, naked woman living in a state of Grace. She’s hungry, so she does the most natural thing in the world and eats a piece of fruit. For following her instincts, trusting herself, and nourishing her body, she is punished. Her punishment? She will never again feel safe in her nakedness. She will never again love her body. She will never again know her body as a place of sacred sovereignty.
To paraphrase Shakespeare: Um, wut?
There is simply no way to read the story of Adam and Eve and come away with the notion that Eve wanted to raid the fridge. The snake explicitly discusses with her the consequences for eating the fruit, and tempts her to do so by stating that she will become like God. Here is the relevant verbiage from the book of Genesis:
For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil. When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
Notice anything about her pangs of hunger here? Anything about starving in a garden filled with other food? No? Didn’t think so.
But Kolton’s not done:
“What have you done?” He God thunders. Eve wants to defend herself, but she is too ashamed to speak. Eve, our first mother whose name means the “mother of all living things,” is silenced, much the way the “patients” of Dr. Nassar were.
To paraphrase Milton: You gotta be freaking kidding me.
Here’s the actual exchange from Genesis between God and Eve:
Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
That’s not her being silent. That’s her answering. And it’s also Eve denying responsibility for her own actions, which is the point of the story. But Kolton apparently doesn’t read English, so she continues with her nonsensical point:
The founding myth of Judeo-Christian religion, the story of Eve, granted generations of men permission to violate women. It teaches us that women are liars and sinners. Even if “She” is telling the truth, she deserved it. God told her not to eat that apple, or wear that skirt, or go out after dark, or be pretty, or desirous, or in that bar or on that street or in that car or born a girl.
To paraphrase Milton: What the actual hell?
No, that story is not about men violating women. God commands Adam. He commands Eve. He punishes Adam. He punishes Eve. He punishes the snake. The end. The story doesn’t say that Eve is a liar. And it doesn’t say that Adam can abuse her. In fact, the first time she is known as “Eve” — as an individual, and not just as “woman” — is when Adam names her by saying she will become the mother of the living.
And is God cruelly punishing Eve? Of course not. He promises to kill both Adam and Eve, and doesn’t kill either of them, because He is merciful. He instead says that they will have to labor for that which would have come easily to them in the first place had they abided by His commandments. And then He comforts them by giving Adam and Eve clothing He makes for them in order to respect their own sense of modesty: remember, God never commanded them to make clothing. They made clothing for themselves after eating from the tree.
But Kolton’s not done yet:
This God, this man-made figurehead of the patriarchy, is not my God. He is a fiction, a man-made myth, but yet one so powerful that it’s poisoned and limited our notion of what GOD, the truly divine, is and can be, especially for women. It’s time for the one truly loving, compassionate God — the God who wants nothing more than to see Eve to rise and resume her place as “the Mother of All Living Things" — to make herself seen, known, and available to all of us. The God I believe in is all loving. God is a Divine source of life and healing, not shame and abandonment.
Good news! The Bible touts that same God, if Kolton were capable of comprehending human language properly.
Sadly, she can’t. Thus, she concludes:
I know that at this very moment in time, Eve is with us and she is awed and proud that we are finally finding our voices, one at time, and then hundreds, and thousands at a time. She, who was lost to us so long ago, is actually here with us now, marching in the streets, testifying, raising her voice, at last.
Eve, our blessed mother, is saying, “#Metoo.”
Eve wasn’t sexually harassed or assaulted by God. She wasn’t a #MeToo victim. The only victims in this piece are Kolton’s readers, who all lost IQ points simply by sticking around to read it.
It's not necessarily a knock against government, but it also shouldn't be surprising.
After a dozen years without a major hurricane, the U.S. has been hit hard in recent weeks, getting rocked first by Hurricane Harvey in Texas, and then Hurricane Irma hitting Florida. In both cases, the storms destroyed thousands of homes and impacted millions of lives. And in both cases, ordinary faith-based groups and churches beat government to the scene to aid victims.
What the average American news consumer may not know is that faith-based relief groups have provided roughly 80% of the aid. Methodists, Presbyterians and other denominations sent out relief crews to help with cleanup after Harvey. Samaritan’s Purse, the Christian non-profit founded by the Reverend Franklin Graham, brought a convoy of trucks loaded with food, chainsaws and other goods. Seventh Day Adventists began dispersing bottled water, diapers, clothing and other supplies. Mormons have also gotten in on the act, providing truckloads of water, hygiene kits and other relief supplies for the victims of Hurricane Harvey, as well as opening up their church buildings as command centers for coordination of relief efforts. They will also be sending in thousands of volunteers to help with the cleanup and recovery from these storms.
Beyond the U.S., Baptist volunteers are already on the ground in the Caribbean, assessing needs there.
That’s just scratching the surface.
It’s amazing to see churches and their volunteers already on site giving assistance before FEMA shows up. Many of these Christians are veterans of previous disaster relief efforts, able to assess needs and get to work without waiting on government bureaucrats for direction. Often times, FEMA plays a supporting role in the work the churches have begun. This is the essence of the American spirit, and of the Christian spirit — self-reliance and charity working hand in hand.
While the victims of these disasters rejoice at the sight of these Earth-bound angels come to provide assistance, not everyone is pleased at non-government-authorized charity. Some have sought to prohibit churches from receiving federal funds to aid in their disaster relief efforts.
As of now, FEMA guidelines prohibit federal aid from going to any institution that allocates more than half of its space to “religious programming,” which would obviously include virtually every church. This despite the fact that many of the same churches being denied federal funds have already opened up their facilities to victims of these disasters and as coordination centers for relief efforts. Several churches are suing.
Last Friday, President Donald Trump tweeted the following message on the subject: “Churches in Texas should be entitled to reimbursement from FEMA Relief Funds for helping victims of Hurricane Harvey (just like others).”
(We’ll offer the caveat that churches should do and are doing what they can whether backed by the feds or not.)
Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE) also highlighted the unfairness of targeting for discrimination the very religious organizations that are doing the most to alleviate suffering. “This policy discriminates against people of faith. It sends the message that communities of worship aren’t welcome to participate fully in public life,” he said. “It reduces the facilities and volunteers time, talent, and effort available to support the broader community. And it is inconsistent with the Supreme Court’s recent 7-2 ruling in Trinity Lutheran. … In other words, it is unconstitutional. It is unreasonable. And it is impeding ongoing recovery efforts.”
Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, a militant secularist organization seeking to eradicate every last vestige of religion, and specifically Christianity, from American public life, has actually condemned allowing faith-based charities the same access to government resources that non-religious groups enjoy.
Barry Lynn, founder of the anti-religious group, made the following statement, stunning in its abject contempt for religion and its heartlessness toward the victims these Christian groups assist: “We know a lot of people in Texas are suffering, and we are sympathetic. But the fact that something bad has happened does not justify a second wrong. Taxpayers should not be forced to protect religious institutions that they don’t subscribe to.”
Not discriminating against religious groups providing critical aid to disaster victims is a “wrong”? Lynn’s is an outrageous statement worthy of condemnation.
The irony of the anti-religious secularists’ position is that they are not themselves willing to provide the same relief they seek to prevent churches from providing. As Arthur Brooks, respected social scientist and president of the American Enterprise Institute, points out regarding charitable giving in America, “Religious people are far more charitable than nonreligious people. In years of research, I have never found a measurable way in which secularists are more charitable than religious people.”
When seeing those in need, Christians act upon a moral imperative required by their religious beliefs, without thought of earthly reward. In the Christian faith, when we feed the hungry, clothe the naked, or give drink to the thirsty, we are serving Christ, for it was Christ himself who declared, “Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”
Following is an excellent article by Star Parker one of my favorite lady journalist!
Star Parker is a conservative black journalist who writes regularly for a number of different publications. As she points out in the following article, it is interesting to watch the reactions from both the right and the left on the events of the last couple of days in Charlottesville, Virginia. In watching Sheppard Smith on Fox news earlier this afternoon, it was revealing and telling along these same lines as Mr. Smith used clips from some of President Trump’s recent announcements about the violence to say that he was equating Robert E. Lee with George Washington. Agreed, President Trump lets his mouth overload his better judgment at times, but to see this slanting of news coverage even from Fox News is very telling. Folks really need to be mindful of what they see, read and hear in the media. We should read and think for ourselves.
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Trump Is Right: Bigotry, Violence 'on Many Sides'
Star Parker · Aug. 16, 2017
British writer and theologian G.K. Chesterton observed, “It is hatred that unite s people — while love is always individual.”
The use of hatred to mobilize has a long and bloody history. We should understand why it works so well. It taps into human weakness. It exploits the unwillingness of individuals to take responsibility for their own lives, to courageously confront life’s ambiguities and inconsistencies, and still move forward constructively. It’s so much easier to blame someone else.
This is what racism is about.
Speaking to the horrible incident in Charlottesville, President Donald Trump condemned the “egregious display of bigotry and violence” on “many sides” that’s “been going on for a long time in our country.” The president appealed for the “hate and violence” to stop and that we “come together as Americans.”
For these remarks the president is being attacked.
Immediately, former Vice President Biden tweeted out “only one side.” Congressional Black Caucus member Maxine Waters followed suit with the same.
But President Trump is right. The use of hate to blame others, the refusal to take personal responsibility for one’s life, is going on and has been going on in our nation “for a long time” on “many sides.”
Being honest about this does not justify the vile white supremacist violence and murder in Charlottesville. But to claim that these distorted individuals are the exclusive locus of bigotry in America does not help our cause.
The Black Lives Movement, for example, has been going on for a number of years, with rallies laced with threats, blame and violent language.
Eight police officers were murdered by young black men in Dallas and Baton Rouge last year. According to then-Dallas police chief David Brown, during the standoff in Dallas, the young black assailant “said he was upset at white people. The suspect said he wanted to kill white people, especially white officers.”
We can’t solve our problems if we refuse to be honest about them and if, in trying to solve them, we demonstrate the same behavior that caused them — suppression of the truth, blame, absence of personal responsibility.
I am astounded when those on the black Left speak out self-righteously about white bigotry.
If not bigotry of the black Left, how do we explain the absence of any mention of Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas in the new National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC?
Or the absence of any mention of America’s first black secretary of state, Condoleezza Rice, who grew up in Birmingham, Alabama, from the Civil Rights Institute in Birmingham?
As the black Left moves to whitewash all evidence of the confederacy and the civil war from our history, it also wants to whitewash the present and pretend the only blacks in America are liberals. And while it does so, it claims a monopoly on tolerance.
The Charlottesville incident began with a movement from the Left to remove a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee.
In an interview several months ago, Condoleezza Rice was asked about removing statues of individuals who represent history that repels us. She said, “When you start wiping out your history, sanitizing your history to make you feel better, it’s a bad thing.”
Reality is what it is. Not what those with a political agenda choose it to be.
And in this sense, President Trump told the truth. Bigotry and violence is coming from “many sides” and it has been for a “long time.”
How do we ultimately solve the problem? Here are the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. from a speech he gave when he was 14 years old:
“We cannot have an enlightened democracy with one great group living in ignorance… We cannot be truly Christian people so long as we flout the central teachings of Jesus: brotherly love and the Golden Rule.”
Monday, May 8, 2017
Xie Yang, pictured with a guard, this morning at his trial
in the Changsha Intermediate People’s Court. (Photo:
After God had created the heavens and earth and all animal life therein, He created mankind. However, before God actually created man from the dirt of the earth He had a conversation with the Holy Spirit and the Preincarnate Son. In this conversation, God is recorded as having said the following:
"Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth" Gen 1:26.
The Us in the above verse is referring to the three persons who make up the Godhead. We know that all three persons of the Godhead – God, the Almighty, the Holy Spirit and God the Son in His Preincarnate state were present at creation. We know that from scripture. In Gen. 1:1 we read:
“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.”
In this verse, the word God is plural. For those of us who believe that there is a plurality of persons in the Godhead—Father, Son, and Spirit, we believe it is They who were engaged in this creative work of making from nothing all that was created. Verse one says conclusively that God the Almighty was involved. Verse two reveals conclusively that the Holy Spirit was also involved in creation:
“And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.”
We have to go to the New Testament and read the words in books by the Apostle John and others to be convinced that Jesus was there at creation.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made” Jn. 1:1-3.
We know of course that it is Jesus, who is speaking through the apostle John in the above passage. We also know that Jesus is the Word. We know from this passage that Jesus was in the beginning with God the Father. We also know that according to what Jesus said in this passage that He has made everything that was made.
Perhaps you are wondering how I can say with any assurance that Jesus is speaking through the Apostle John in this passage, especially after having said above that we were going to read the words of John the Apostle and others.
Let’s jump ahead about fifteen chapters and look at what the Lord Jesus said through the apostle John in chapter sixteen, verses 13 – 14:
“However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. 14He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you.”
This passage is saturated with truths that every believer needs to embed in their hearts and minds. Let’s take a look at several of them:
When does the Holy Spirit speak words He hears? Here is a hint: In 2 Timothy 3:16 Paul says:
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.”
In saying, “All Scripture”, Paul, is making reference to all the scripture in the Old and the New Testament. The Greek words that are translated into “by inspiration of God” actually mean – “God breathed”. This means the process of Holy Spirit inspiration is the same as when God breathed life into Adam to make Adam a living being. How are the words of scripture “God breathed”? Look back at what Jesus said to the eleven faithful disciples in the upper room as revealed in John 16 above.
Jesus said: “The Holy Spirit will not speak on His own authority, but will speak those things He hears.” From whom does the Holy Spirit hear words that become scripture? Jesus said, “He (the Holy Spirit) will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you.” In the writing of all the Old and New Testament scriptures the process was something like this: Jesus would speak to the Holy Spirit, the Holy Speak would breath the words that Jesus spoke to Him through the ear, into the heart and mind of whoever was writing sacred text at the time and they would write down what the Holy Spirit breathed into their ear, heart, and mind.
In reference to the inspiration of God’s Holy Word, as revealed by Paul in 2 Timothy 3:16, Merle F. Unger in his New Unger's Bible Handbook has this to say:
“The inspiration and use of Scripture. This declares: (1) The full inspiration of the entire OT and by implication all canonical Scripture. (2) All Scripture is a product of God – God-breathed. God actually produced it, 'breathed it out.' It remains so whether man believes it or not. It has this unchanging quality objectively inherent in it. (3) As God-breathed it is inerrant and fully authoritative, since God produced it and actual error is inconsistent with God. (4) The whole of Scripture is useful (a) for doctrine (teaching); (b) for reproof or censure of wrong and sin; (c) for correction, setting aright or reformation; (d) for instruction (disciplinary education) in righteousness, both God's inherent righteousness and the righteous conduct He requires of His own; (e) that 'the man of God may be thoroughly equipped' in the sense of complete with nothing lacking, completely equipped and furnished 'for every good work.' This view of the full inspiration of the Bible is the citadel against error and apostasy.—New Unger's Bible Handbook, The
Paul the apostle also said a very interesting thing in Eph. 3:9:
“…… and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ”.
I believe that Paul speaks undisputable truth when he says that God created all things through Jesus Christ. This includes every written word within the covers of the Holy Bible.
The writer of the book of Hebrews, I believe, said it very succinctly:
“God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, 2has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; 3who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, 4having become so much better than the angels, as He has by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they” Heb 1:1-4.
Please note, in this passage from Hebrews, Jesus not only created our world, but verse two says it was He who created our Universe, in that He made all the worlds.
Why is it so important that we know that every person of the Holy Trinity was there at creation? We need to know and understand these things because of what God was referring to when He said to the Holy Spirit and the Preincarnate Son:
“Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness…”
It is so important for believers to understand what God meant when He made that statement. To help us understand, let’s think for a moment: What does the whole of scripture reveal to us that God is first and foremost? The whole of scripture reveals that God is a Spirit being. He is not flesh and blood, skin and bone. God can appear in whatever shape, form or posture He chooses, but He himself has said that He is not a man or a son of man. In Numbers 23:19 God said through Balaam:
"God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?
Jesus said in John 4:24: “God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
Let’s think about several things Jesus said in this verse for a moment. (A.) He said God is Spirit. Jesus is saying that God in His essence, His intrinsic fundamental nature, in His essential being - He is a spirit being.
However, there is something else of utmost importance that we must recognize in this verse. (B.) Jesus reveals that since God is spirit, those who worship Him must do so in spirit and truth. What do you suppose He means when He says people must worship God in spirit and truth? 1. He means that only people with a spirit being existing in them can worship God. Every person who has believed in Jesus Christ unto salvation has a new spirit being living in them from the moment they believed. And 2, it means those who have a new spirit being living in them must worship God through their spirit being.
How do we know this? Look at what Jesus said to Nicodemus in John 3:3:
"Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God."
Let me share with you something I learned about this verse from Billy Graham when I was only a few months old in the Lord and I have never forgotten it. I learned this while listening to Billy Graham preaching on the radio in my car as I was driving from one Xerox customer’s office to another that was separated by about 6o miles. Therefore, Mr. Graham had my undivided attention for about an hour.
Mr. Graham began by reading the verse as it is printed in most bibles and then he explained that this verse as he had read it was not the correct rendering of the Greek text from which all New Testament books are derived. Then he pronounced the Greek word from which the erroneous English words “born again” come. Next, he gave the semantically correct English translation. That correct translation is: “from above, from a higher place,” (when speaking) of things which come from heaven or God.
Here is the correct translation, according to Mr. Graham of John 3:3, from my Parallel New Testament in Greek and English. “Answered Jesus and said to him: Truly, truly I tell thee, except anyone is born from above, he cannot see the kingdom of God” John 3:3.
We are not born again, we are born from above via the Holy Spirit the moment we believe in Jesus as God’s Son and our personal Savior. At the very moment, when the Holy Spirit comes into our being upon our believing in Jesus Christ, He (the Holy Spirit) brings into our physical being our new spirit from the throne room of God in heaven.
Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, through the apostle John in John 1:18 reveals that because God is spirit, no human has seen Him in His Spirit form:
“No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him.”
God has presented Himself at times and in such a manner that allowed humans to see Him in a physical posture. Here is how He presented Himself to Moses.
“So it shall be, while My glory passes by, that I will put you in the cleft of the rock, and will cover you with My hand while I pass by. 23Then I will take away My hand, and you shall see My back; but My face shall not be seen” Ex 33:22-23.
Also, Isaiah said He saw God while God was sitting on a throne and the train of his robe filled the temple.
“In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the temple” Is. 6:1-2.
Why is it so important that believers have a good biblical understanding of their spiritual existence? Because when we close our eyes in death, or when we are raptured with the all the living saints of the church, we will forever more exist as glorified spirit beings. Whereas, until one or the other of those two mile stones are reached we will continue to exist as dichotomous earthly beings.
I don’t know about you, but I get excited thinking about that glorious time in the future when I shed my old earth suit and begin living in communion every moment of time without end with my Lord and Savior, my brothers and sisters in Christ, and the saints of all time, as a glorified spiritual being.
The truth is that we believers, if we are walking in fellowship with the Lord, are experiencing spiritual time with Him every day. When we are having pure thoughts, we are operating in the spirit. When we are loving others, as He has told us to love others, we are operating in the spirit. When we speak wholesome words for the purpose of representing Christ to others, we are operating in the spirit.
On the other hand, when we speak unkind words to others, we are operating in the flesh. When we have impure thoughts, or we are not loving others as we know we should, when we are using foul, hateful, unkind language we are operating in the flesh. The reality of our daily walk is that we only please, exalt and bring honor and glory to Him when we are operating in the spirit.
Another thing we need to keep in mind, when we are walking in the spirit we are worshiping Him in spirit and truth. I also believe it can be said that in the kingdom of God’s Son here on earth, walking in obedience to the known, revealed will of God and His Son is a form of worship of our Almighty God and His Son.
Look at what the Apostle Paul said in Col. 1: 13 – 14:
“He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, 14in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.”
Is the above verse of scripture a reality in your life? If you have trusted in Jesus Christ as your Savior, you have been delivered from the power of darkness and have no excuse for walking anywhere but in the light of Christ. Glory Hallelujah!
A TRAGIC MISAPPLICATION OF MATTEW 10:33
More and more I see Christians on facebook using Scripture out of context to put pressure on other facebook readers to share or repost a spiritual slogan, premise, thought, or a passage of scripture. The verse that is used to instill guilt feelings in another Christian is this one:
“But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven”. Matthew 10:33.
This verse does not in any way pertain or apply to Christians today. Jesus was speaking to Jews still under the Law when He spoke these words. These Jews were awaiting the coming of Messiah to usher in the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. From the beginning of the ministries of John the Baptist and Jesus their message was first and foremost this:
“Repent for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand”.
We know this from these verses:
“In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!”” Matthew 3:1-3;
“From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”” Matthew 4:17;
“These twelve Jesus sent out and commanded them, saying: “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’””Matthew 10:5-7.
I know that many believers have never been and are not even now being taught that we are to be very discerning when we read the gospels, especially Matthew’s gospel. We must always determine the context of each passage of scripture in the gospel of Matthew to know whether the passage is to be understood in the context of the Law or in the context of grace.
We must never forget that God first sent His Son to make a bona fide offer to the Jews; That offer being: if they would repent as a nation and turn back to God that God would usher in the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth; and He would seat His Son, Jesus the Messiah on the throne of David to reign over the Jewish nation.
Let’s look at Merle F. Unger’s commentary in His Bible Handbook says about this message of Jesus at the beginning of His ministry:
“This expression 'near' or 'has drawn near' meant that the King was then present and that a bona fide offer of the kingdom was being made to Israel on the one condition of her repentance. The nation's failure to repent even with its true King in its midst, and the consequent rejection of both the King and the kingdom were part of the divine plan to demonstrate the nation's inveterate sinfulness and the necessity of the King's atoning death as a prerequisite for the future establishment of the kingdom”. Commentary on Matt. 4:17;
“The King sent forth His 12 disciples, endued with miraculous powers, to proclaim the kingdom to Israelites only, 1-6. Their message was identical with that of John, the King's forerunner, 7, and of the King Himself . Their commission was to confirm the gospel of the kingdom with miraculous powers.” Commentary on Matt. 10:5-7. Both commentary quotes from The New Unger's Bible Handbook.
It is so very important that Christians and Jews understand that God made a bona fide offer to Israel through, not only the Prophet John the Baptist, but through Israel’s Messiah, Whom they rejected and put to death. John spent his brief ministry on earth proclaiming that the Kingdom of Messiah was near at hand, and if Jews would only repent and embrace Messiah, God would usher in His earthly reign.
Today’s Jews may have an excuse for not knowing much about John the Baptist, the Millennial Kingdom and their Messiah, whom they rejected, because they absolutely refuse to read the New Testament. Some say they don’t read it because it is a book of gentile prayers to a foreign god. Some say it was inspired by Satan. To some Jews it has been on a banned book list sanctioned by most Rabbis from the time of Christ here on earth.
We Christians on the other hand have no excuse for not understanding every truth set forth in the New Testament. All that any believer needs to do to gain understanding of the New Testament is to ask the Holy Spirit to guide them into every truth contained therein. Why would we not? For it is the NT that we find all the teachings of grace from the heart of our Savior,
However, when our pastors and teachers in the church, don’t preach and teach the truths from the uncompromising word of God, it is little wonder that their followers don’t learn the truths of God’s word.
Let us revisit the verse which I conclude many Christians are taking out of context and, in effect, spreading an untruth.
“But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven”. Matthew 10:33.
When someone from an email, or on facebook, reads a posting by a friend that has a spiritual message, a spiritual challenge, or a word of knowledge and they are informed at the end of the message that if they don’t share the message with others then they are guilty of denying Jesus before men, they have just been told a blasphemous lie. Then to make matters worse, if they are told that as a result of denying Jesus before men, Jesus is going to deny them before His father they have been lied to twice.
In the first place you are not denying Jesus by refusing to forward an email or reposting a fb that contains a spiritual phrase, or a verse, or an genuine word of knowledge.
In the second place Jesus is never going to deny any believer for any reason ever!!!!
If you are a believer in Jesus Christ and you have been posting this lie, I beg you in the name of Jesus to stop. If Jesus would deny any believer before the Father for not having forwarded and email or reposting a word of truth, then Jesus has stopped being the Savior of man, and has become the condemner of man. Which will never happen, for true disciples of Jesus Christ know who the great deceiver and condemner of man is.
If you have a strong disagreement with anything I have said, before you go ballistic and send me a hate message, ask the Holy Spirit to show you exactly where I err in my understanding of the scriptures I have quoted, or any other scripture to which I might have alluded.
“Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue”. 2 Pet. 1:2-3.
By Tom Hanson
I am truly frustrated and dismayed with what is going on in my country right now. A cursory observation of what has happened in the past two weeks, enforces my contention that a power beyond human control is threatening to rip our country apart, or worse, blow our country to smithereens. Without our heavenly Fathers intervention America can’t withstand the forces of evil much longer.
If that power that is now controlling a minority of human hearts and minds is not brought under control, this nation is going to implode. It may very well be that self destruction is why the United States of America is not ever mentioned, alluded to, or referenced in scripture that deals with end time events. Whether that is true or not, I believe we are living in the midst of that time Jesus spoke of in Matthew’s gospel, chapter 24, verses 10 and 12. The events mentioned in those two verses proceeds that which takes place just describe by Jesus in verse 21? In describing the times shortly before His 2nd coming to set up His millennial Kingdom He said:
“And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another”.
“And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold”.
In verse 21, He describes the drawn out events which will cause the planets in the solar system to shutter.
“For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be”.
Many people, hopefully still in the minority, have lost their ability to recognize what is truth and what are lies. They have also lost their ability to think clearly, rationally, logically, and humanely. They have developed what some have called, “Their own truths” or “Their own realities”; which are 180 degrees out of phase with the truths and realities of most conservative Christians – aka sane people. The responses of those who have “their own truths or realities” to some of life’s hard lessons have become so egregious and perverted, and their anger so out of control, that their responses are worse than their original problem(s).
For instance: Over the past few years a number of people, while breaking the law, or having just broken the law, resisted the police when they were being arrested, and were killed. Are the public businesses in the immediate area of a tragedy such as this to blame for the death of these people? The obvious answer to anyone with common sense is no! Then why would hundreds of people of the same race of the people killed, descend on the area and burn, burglarize, vandalize, and destroy a multitude of retail businesses in the area where the original crime was committed or where the suspected criminal died?
In a report on all crime in the USA in 2012 – 2013 the Justice Dept. revealed these statistics:
During the 2012/2013 period, white people committed 99,403 crimes against black people. Whereas, black people committed an average of 560,600 violent crimes against white people. This means that black people were the attackers in 84.9 percent of the violent crimes involving blacks and whites.
Also, according to statistics maintained by the far-left extremist Guardian newspaper in Britain, more than half of all people killed by US police in 2015 were white, while only 25 percent were black.
The Guardian’s statistics are contained in a tally of police killings maintained by that newspaper on a site titled “The Counted.” This website was set up by the far-leftist newspaper with the intention of “proving” how “racist” the police in America are—an aim which has now completely backfired in face of the facts.
According to the Guardian’s tally, of the approximately 1001 people killed by police in 2015 in America, 502 were white, 250 were black. I wonder from reading these last two paragraphs how many readers will immediately understand what these statistics reveal? In case the truth has escaped anyone reading these statistics, more whites are being killed by police than blacks, yet whites has never rioted in any city, stealing, burning, destroying property, and injuring innocent people because a white person was killed by the police.
I repeat, far more white people than black people are killed by police in America, both proportionally to their population sizes and in real numbers, completely contrary to the anti-white propaganda put out by the “Black Lives Matter” campaign and its allies.
There is something so wrong with people’s hearts and minds in America that has no humane cure, that unless God directly intervenes soon, I fear this nation will implode.
Racism is a problem in America. It has been a problem since the first Europeans landed on America’s shores. It will be a problem when Jesus comes at the rapture of the Church. However, it did not have its beginning with America. Racism had its beginning in the heart of Satan. He is the one who planted the first seed of racism in the human heart when the very first person figuratively pointed a finger at a person of a different color and said in their heart: “I am better than that person”.
There is a cancer that Satan is embedding into the heart and soul of every person, who lives to do evil in the shadows of imagined and manufactured racism. I call these persons mongers of racism. They live to promote and induce racial strife and heartache in our cultures.
By Tom Hanson
While I had planned to have posted my first article from a six article series from American Renaissance by now, I am still waiting on their written permission to use their material.
As I wait, I will continue to share some things that are on my heart concerning the crisis with which blacks in America are faced. When I see blacks, of various ages, being supported by male and female whites and some latinos, in the raucous Black Lives Matter demonstrations, it makes me wonder. For what legitimate reasons are they demonstrating? Because some black lawbreakers have been killed by white policemen trying to make an arrest? Is it strange to anyone else, besides me, that more than half of all people killed by US police in 2015 were white, while only 25 percent were black? Yet, whites are not protesting that “White lives matter!” We know that all lives matter, but we also know, at least the intelligent majority, that the majority of whites and blacks killed by policemen were guilty of committing a crime, even if it is just resisting a police officer trying to do his or her duty. Resisting arrest is also a crime by the way!
I have never heard or read of any whites believing that policemen have it in for them because they are white. When it comes to one race attacking another specific race, the 2012/ 2013 statistics from the Justice Dept. and elsewhere reveal white people committed 99,403 crimes against black people.
However, black people committed a total of 560,600 violent crimes against white people. Yet, we don’t see whites demonstrating or forming up mobs and attacking black businesses and destroying the livelihood and sometimes the lives of innocent black people. Nor, have we heard of whites targeting white or black law enforcement personnel because of the rate of arrests by law enforcement. Why is that? Be thinking about it.
I do not mean for this treatise to come off as a diatribe against blacks, but I must reveal some troubling statistics to make a greater point later. Therefore, I ask you the reader to read this with a prayer filled heart. I pray that believers everywhere will have their eyes opened to the horrible issues that blacks in America face. For most of their problems, they are going to have to take responsibility for changing attitudes, outlooks and their world view. We can not do that for them, or for people of any race. I believe you will see this from the things revealed in the articles written by honest, fair, conscientious, caring people who truly want what is best for blacks in America and what is best for America.
However, for Christians that does not remove our responsibility before God to reach out and help where we can, beginning with prayers and encouragement to those whose lives are being viciously torn asunder. Albeit, part of what is destroying black lives, black families, black futures, had its beginning in the 1960’s. It was then that the black people in America surrendered their well being and their destiny for the second time to a progressive political machine.
This political machine in the 1960’s, in essence, promised blacks in America, another free ‘40 acres and a mule’ gift, just as their ancestors were promised shortly after Abraham Lincoln gave them their freedom. It was a lie in the 1860’s and it was a lie in the 1960’s. There is nothing free, when it’s connected to the government. Somebody always pays. And very often it is more than one entity that ends up paying for a government’s fiascos.
When the nearsighted, unscrupulous politicos of the third quarter of the twentieth century created the catalyst for our present welfare state, they began building a time bomb that is about to explode on America here in the first quarter of the 21st century.
To blame everything negative that is going on in the black culture today on welfare would be very irresponsible on anyone’s part and would be overlooking the facts of human history which teaches us that most human problems result from the disobedience of the laws of God and man.
It is no secret that the black community is struggling desperately with marriage, drug and crime problems. It is also absolutely incredible that those who have a voice within the black community simply do not stand up and denounce the things that are destroying their communities.
The two black voices that have done more to bring harm to blacks in America while claiming to want only the best for blacks is Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, yet I have never heard any black man or woman, preacher, teacher or public figure speak out on national or local television or radio against either of these two hate mongers. I have read very convicting columns on problems in the black culture by Thomas Sowell and Walter Williams to name two of the best black Columnist in America, but no TV or radio commentators have I heard. And that is very important because, most people today get their news and information about the world from the tv, radio or internet.
In going through mammoth reams of printed pages in my looking for answers to the plight of black people in America, I have comprised a list of the most harmful things that blacks say are destroying the black culture in America.
Believe it or not, one of the most damaging things to the black culture as perceived by both blacks and whites is black music, under the banner of hip-hop music.
Here are a few of the internet article titles I highlighted and pasted into this document:
“BLACK MUSIC” CULTURE DESTROYING THE FABRIC AND MORALITY OF YOUTH IN AMERICA…”;
“How Hip-Hop Destroys the Potential of Black Youth”;
“Yes Hip Hop Is Destroying The Black Youth…”;
“The Color of Hip Hop: How Negative Lyrics are Destroying the Black Culture”.
Many commentators and columnist, black and white, have begun to speak out against rap, hip-hop, and whatever else it is called that has submerged this nation’s youth over the past twenty or so years in vile language and degrading imagery. It is this aspect of hip-hop that clearly is influencing the increase in drugs, violence, and even marital problems within families among young people, but especially young blacks.
Dr. Ben Carson, retired neurosurgeon and a recent GOP presidential candidate, in a 2015 radio appearance on New York’s WBLS, spoke about the role he said hop/hop music is playing in destroying the black community.
Dr. Carson stated, “We need to re-establish faith in our communities and the values and principles that got us through slavery, which got us through Jim Crow, and segregation and all kinds of horrible things that were heaped upon us.
“Why were we able to get through those? Because of our faith, because of our family, because of our values, and as we allow the hip-hop community to destroy those things for us, and as we grasp onto what’s politically correct and not what is correct, we continue to deteriorate.”
Though rap, or hip hop, or whatever it’s name, is a major component in what is bringing our black families and culture in America to ruin, there are other issues we need to face also.
By Tom Hanson
In my last sentence in Part two of this treatise I said: “Though rap, or hip hop, or whatever it’s name, is a major component in what is bringing our black families and culture in America to ruin, there are other issues we need to face”. I should have added to that sentence the words, ‘as well’, or ‘also’.
In no way did I mean to leave the impression that hip hop music is the only major component that is destroying the black culture and communities, for there are other major factors that are contributing to the destruction of our black cultures and communities in America. I am going to do my best to present facts and figures to show the impact of many different things that are threatening the well being of the blacks in America. But, it’s not only the well being of blacks I am concerned about. I am concerned that what is taking place in our country right now within the black culture and community at large may escalate into a blood bath as a response on the part of whites, latinos, and others who perceive they and their families well being are at stake.
For instance: A 2012 study by the Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention revealed that in 2010 black youths committed six times more murders, three times more rapes, 10 times more robberies and three times more assaults than did their white counterparts. Considering that there are almost three times as many whites in America as blacks, these statistics speak volumes about one of the other major problems in the black culture.
Other statistics released by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in their “Uniform Crime Reports” reveal that: “In the year 2008, black youths, who make up 16% of the youth population, accounted for 52% of juvenile violent crime arrests, including 58% for homicide and 67% for robbery.”
I am not a psychologist or social worker by any stretch of the imagination. But, even I can see that until there are drastic changes for the better made in our black culture and communities in America, there is something rotten in Demark.
Why is there so much crime in our black youths? Let’s look at some other statistics that may give us insight into this and other black problems.
*In 1965, only eight percent of childbirths in the Black community occurred out-of-wedlock;
*Today, the out-of-wedlock childbirth in the Black community is over an astonishing 70 percent;
*In black American families today, 72 percent live in a single parent household;
*The percentage of blacks 25 and over with a high school diploma or higher in 2014 - 19.7%;
*The poverty rate in 2014 for blacks was 88.2%, while nationally it was 14.8 percent for all the other races;
* Forty-two percent of Black students attend schools that are under-resourced and are performing poorly;
* Black males are three times more likely to be suspended or expelled from school than their White peers, missing valuable learning time in the classroom;
* Black and Hispanic males constitute almost 80 percent of youth in special education programs;
* Black males are 2.5 times less likely to be enrolled in gifted and talented programs, even if their prior achievement reflects the ability to succeed;
* Black male students make up 20 percent of all students in the United States classified as mentally retarded, although they are only nine percent of the student population;
* Twenty-eight percent of core academic teachers at high-minority schools lack appropriate certification;
* Less than half of Black male students graduate from high school on time, although many eventually complete a GED.
Using word specific engine searches, I found the above statistics in articles, publications, dissertations and documents posted on the internet.
All told, it’s a gloomy recital of stats — one that screams, as blacks often do, “racial inequality,” meaning race-based social injustices. Such a list of stats indicates to lots of people that blacks need special help, government help, because without government aid, the situation will likely become worse. But that isn’t what the evidence really shows! The fact is that most of the problems which blacks are experiencing today are because of the intervention into their lives of progressive governmental solutions.
Therefore, the answer is not governmental solutions! In fact, the preponderance of the proof demonstrates that preferential treatment and, especially, government aid has harmed blacks, not helped them.
There are several problems with today’s black culture, which most Christians find disturbing. The first is the number of children being born out of wedlock. Another is the high percentage of single parent families, especially those single parent families where the father has very little or no input into the lives of the children. Boys and girls need both moms and dads in their lives growing up. But little boys more especially need a father figure because it is through the dad or an influential male figure that little boys learn how to relate to the world around them as a male.
Research shows that good fathering helps children develop in many important areas. Here are just a few:
These are not the only valid reasons for having a dad in a child’s life. There are many more but we won’t take the time to enumerate them here. Let it suffice, by my saying that common sense and research proves that blacks - male and female, are suffering from the lack of father figures being present in black children’s formative years. While reading an article on the need of male role models in black communities this quote jumped out at me:
“It is easy to recognize that this absence of men in America’s African-American communities is at the heart of the crisis”.
By Tom Hanson
I vividly remember how important my role as the father to my sons became, almost instantly, after accepting Jesus as my Savior and Lord. It was a God thing I am convinced. I believe the Holy Spirit immediately began to work in my heart to learn all I could about being a godly father and then to become one.
As I write this I’m reminded of two verses in Proverbs that are so apropos for all fathers to be reminded of on a regular basis:
“Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it. Prov. 22:6;
This verse became my beacon for steering my sons through the obstacles of growing up in east Texas that most boys faced in the 1970’s and 80’s.
This next verse convicted me that if a father was intended by God to be the glory of his children, then I needed to become the kind of man God wanted me to be. The Holy Spirit convicted me that every area in my life as a man needed to demonstrate to my sons what a godly man looked like. My sons needed to see me loving them, loving their mother, loving the Lord, loving people around me and treating each and everyone with respect.
“Children's children are the crown of old men, And the glory of children is their father”. Prov. 17:6
I like Matthew Henry’s comment on this verse from Proverbs 17:
“It is an honor to children to have wise and godly parents continued to them, even after they are grown up and settled in the world”. Matthew Henry’s Concise Bible Commentary.
Now, consider prayerfully what Paul the apostle says in the following verses. I think you will see that his words not only apply to fathers who are actively involved in raising their children, they also apply to those fathers who have been removed, or they have removed themselves, from the day to day raising of their children. A father’s responsibility to his children doesn’t stop with the separation, divorce, or estrangement placed upon him.
“And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord”. Eph. 6:4;
“Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged”. Col.
O, how my heart weeps for any child whose mother or father demonstrates that they love themselves more than they love their children.
I have just posted on fb an article titled “Why Are Black People So Angry” by Paul R. Hollrah. This article lays out very specifically why there is so much discord, anger and frustration in the black communities today. Anyone who hasn’t read the article on my fb page and would like to read it can go to:
Following are some very astute observations and nuggets of truth that Mr. Hollrah puts forth in his article that reveals the two major reasons blacks in America as so very angry.
“To find an answer to that question (Why are black people so angry) we need look no further than a federal program called Aid to Families With Dependent Children (AFDC), the first of two major tipping points in black history following the Emancipation Proclamation. AFDC was passed in 1935 by a Democrat-controlled Congress with a 72-23 majority in the Senate, a 322-103 majority in the House, and signed into law by a Democrat president, Franklin D. Roosevelt. In order for a family to be eligible for AFDC payments, the family must have had at least one dependent child, under age 18, who was “deprived of financial support from one of their parents due to the parent’s death, continued absence (emphasis added), or incapacity.” In other words, if two able-bodied parents lived in the home the family was denied AFDC benefits.
“Nothing… not drugs, not poverty, not urban decay, nor lack of educational opportunities… has contributed more to the disintegration of the black family unit in America than the restrictions of the AFDC program. As an unintended consequence of AFDC, marriage was discouraged, fathers were forced out of their homes, and single-parent welfare mothers found they could increase their monthly income by simply having more babies. As a result, we now have a society in which three out of four black babies are born out of wedlock, and where black mothers, unable to discipline their fatherless children, find so many of their young men either imprisoned, addicted to drugs, or the victims of gang violence.” 
It isn’t only Mr. Hollrah that is convinced of the damage that AFDC has done to black families since it’s inception. There are hundreds of other scholars, researchers, and god fearing individuals that have spent incalculable hours of research to discover the cause of black issues in America today. Many of these have arrived at the same conclusions as Mr. Hollrah, who continues:
“The second major tipping point in black history was the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision of the U.S. Supreme Court, striking down the “separate but equal” concept in public education, followed closely by the War on Poverty of the Kennedy-Johnson era. It was then that Democrats resigned themselves to the notion that their century-old campaign to oppress blacks through violence and threats of violence was at an end. Instead, they found it politically expedient to simply buy the allegiance of black people with funds from the public treasury.
“Accordingly, the Kennedy and Johnson administrations, with a Democrat-controlled Congress, enacted a vast array of social welfare programs designed to mollify blacks and to capture their votes for Democrat candidates. At that juncture, blacks had two well-defined paths to choose from: 1) They could choose what conservatives and Republicans offered: equal opportunities in jobs and education, hard work, and perseverance… the time-honored road to the American Dream, or 2) They could choose the “free lunch” that Democrats offered. Unfortunately, under the self-defeating leadership of race hustlers such as Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, blacks entered into a “devils bargain” with the Democratic Party, choosing the “free lunch” alternative.
“It was pure cynicism on the part of white Democrats. In his well-documented book, Inside the White House, historian Ronald Kessler quotes Lyndon Johnson as he justified his support for civil rights legislation to two Democratic governors on board Air Force One. Johnson is quoted as saying, “I’ll have those n*****s voting Democratic for the next two hundred years.”
“The only price blacks had to pay for all the free money, food stamps, subsidized housing, free healthcare, and preferential treatment in jobs and higher education was to pull the Democrat lever on Election Day. Since that time, blacks have consistently given 90-95 percent of their votes to Democrats. Yet, 61 years after Brown v. Board of Education, and in spite of endless Democratic promises of “better times,” blacks have seen little social and economic progress.”
I pray that I am not actually being unfair to blacks by sighting all the statistics that point to problems within the black culture and communities. It is only when blacks face their problems and cry out and seek for help from the correct source will blacks ever arrive at the solution to their problems.
Unless I am greatly mislead, we know by those statistics we have looked at, why the black culture and consequently the black communities are being destroyed in America. Yet, regardless of what the current statistics are revealing to us, I will stand by these convictions: 1.) blacks are not inherently a depraved people; 2.) blacks are not inherently a felonious people; 3.) blacks are not inherently an ignominious people; 4.) blacks are not inherently an uncultured people; 5.) blacks are not inherently an imbecilic people.
Black Americans are basically like most other Americans, with these exceptions: Blacks have been disenfranchised many times in their history and most Americans know this.
The first time they were disenfranchised as a free people was when they were removed from their home country – Africa and brought to America as slaves. The second disenfranchisement happened after having been given their freedom from American slavery and while the civil war was coming to an end. At that time they were promised by General Sherman forty acres of land in the defeated south where they could begin life anew as free men and women and children. They were told that they could start anew in the south with their own land coming from the very land on which they had been forced, as slaves, to work. This quickly became known as “the forty acres and a mule program”.
“Forty acres and a mule refers to a concept in the United States for agrarian reform for former enslaved African American farmers, following disruptions to the institution of slavery provoked by the American Civil War. Many freedmen believed and were told by various political figures that they had a right to own the land they had long worked as slaves, and were eager to control their own property. Freed people widely expected to legally claim 40 acres (16 ha) of land (a quarter-quarter section) and a mule after the end of the war, long after proclamations such as Sherman's Special Field Orders, No. 15 and the Freedmen's Bureau Act were explicitly reversed.
“Some land redistribution occurred under military jurisdiction during the war and for a brief period thereafter. But, Federal and state policy during the Reconstruction era emphasized wage labor, not land ownership, for African Americans. Almost all land allocated during the war was restored to its pre-war owners. Several African American communities did maintain control of their land, and some families obtained new land by homesteading. African American land ownership increased markedly in Mississippi during the 19th century, particularly. The state had much undeveloped bottomland behind riverfront areas that had been cultivated before the war. Most blacks acquired land through private transactions, with ownership peaking at 15,000,000 acres (6,100,000 ha) in 1910, before an extended financial recession caused problems that resulted in the loss of their property for many.”
The third through fifth disenfranchisements have been covered in the article by Mr. Hollrah. But as a reminder - the third was when the Democrats created the AFDC program in 1935. The fourth came with the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision of the U.S. Supreme Court, striking down the “separate but equal” concept in public education. The fifth resulted from the War on Poverty of the Kennedy-Johnson era.
When we continue with Part Five we will look at suggested ways for blacks to take charge of their lives, deal with their problems and become an intrinsic part of the American culture and community.
“The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.”
 Do Progressive Policies Hurt Black Americans? By Kurt Williamsen
 Do Progressive Policies Hurt Black Americans? By Kurt Williamsen
 “Why Are Black People So Angry” by Paul R. Hollrah http://drrichswier.com/2014/08/28/black-people-angry/
 “Why Are Black People So Angry” by Paul R. Hollrah http://drrichswier.com/2014/08/28/black-people-angry/
 From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
By Tom Hanson
Quoting from Walter Williams article, “Challenges For Black People” Part One”:
“Heather Mac Donald's most recent book, "The War on Cops," points out some devastating and sobering statistics: "Blacks were charged with 62 percent of all robberies, 57 percent of all murders, and 45 percent of all assaults in the 75 largest U.S. counties in 2009, while constituting roughly 15 percent of the population in those counties. From 2005 to 2014, 40 percent of cop-killers were black. Given the racially lopsided nature of gun violence, a 26 percent rate of black victimization by the police is not evidence of bias."
Throughout these treatises on Racism Mongering I have tried to use true, unprejudiced, statistics, such as those above, to paint a accurate picture of what the black culture and the black community faces all over America.
As we look at statistics such as those above and those I have presented throughout these treatises, it is easy to let negative numbers over shadow our common sense and those true spiritual convictions of our heart. These biblical convictions results from a sound, viable relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ in which we have spent copious amounts of time in prayer and the study of God’s word.
Without faithful, focused time in God’s word and in prayer, our convictions of what is right and wrong begin to be shaped and molded by the world around us. When our convictions are shaped and molded by the world our understanding and perception of the whole black community can end up being distorted by statistics. Instead of sending us to our knees in prayer for those who are in such great need of prayer, we are tempted to turn our backs and say: “Let them work out their problems!”
I shudder to think of anyone who has to face problems that are Satan saturated, who does not have spiritually strong, committed, prayer warriors interceding at the throne of grace on their behalf.
My whole purpose in writing this treatise was to inform brothers and sisters in Christ of the continual deteriorating situation in the black community and solicit the help of those on whose hearts God will move, to begin interceding for blacks all over America.
However, what I am asking is for believers, who are not fearful of coming against Satan and perhaps one of his greatest strongholds, ever, over a people in the USA.
Yet, I believe God has equipped us to deal with every problem known to man and in the power of the Holy Spirit to come against any evil in this world that impacts believers, our families, and our neighbors. How can I say this? I take God at His Word. The Lord Jesus through the Holy Spirit, breathed this teaching of grace into the heart of Paul the apostle:
“For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for: 1.) pulling down strongholds; 2.) casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God; 3.) bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ; 4.) and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled”. 2 Corinthians 10:4-6. I have numbered each of the things which God assures us that our weapons of warfare will accomplish
Let’s look at that verse and answer three questions that come to mind:
What does it mean our weapons are mighty in God?
What does it mean casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God?
What does it mean to bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ?
In an effort to answer these questions in the most biblical inclusive manner let me quote Eph. 6:10-13:
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”
We find that the weapons we need in serving in the army of the Lord are spiritual weapons. These are designed by God to win any and every battle into which He sends us. These spiritual weapons are: the girdle of truth in which we wrap our soul and spirit in preparation for and during the battle; the breastplate of righteousness to protect our heart, our will our resolve; we protect our feet with combat boots which carries the gospel of peace to all mankind; our shield is the shield of faith; our helmet is the helmet of salvation; and our sword is the sword of the spirit - God’s word. And the greatest weapon of our warfare is prayer! We are to be praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit - as revealed in Ephesians 6:14-18.
Therefore, what could it mean by our weapons being mighty in God? It means that because God the Holy Spirit lives in us we have the power of almighty God at our disposal, to use for His honor and glory.
Therefore, what does it mean to caste down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God? It means that God’s word stands against and will overcome anything raised up or exalted by man to defeat God’s purpose and will for mankind here on earth.
Therefore, what does it mean to bring every thought captive to the obedience of Christ? It means that God has given us this weapon to prevent Satan from building a stronghold in our hearts and minds through deceitful thoughts, ideas, and lies. Though this is a spiritual weapon given only to believers, I believe that Christians through their correctly applying the word of God to their lives and ministry can benefit others, not just in introducing them to the Lord Jesus, but also in helping folks in their struggles with the dark forces of this world.
First there must be concerted efforts to marshal the body of Christ to pray fervently, frequently, continuously for the black communities in America and the black culture within every community.
Through this means of intercessory prayer, I believe God will aid those being prayed for and over in their efforts and attempts in escaping the bonds and shackles of Satan strapped on them by the mongers of racism.
One of the ways that I believe that Christians can help open the eyes of blacks to some of the sources of their frustrations, struggles, seeming helplessness and hopelessness at times is through revealing to black people the great body of evidence that exposes the lies and deceitfulness of progressive politicians over the past one hundred and fifty five years is a start.
As I was thinking about things that are relative to the black community, for which we might want to pray, I came across some prayers for blacks published by a black Catholic priest from the late eighteen hundreds. Here is a short bio on the man whose name was Augustine John Tolton.
Augustine John Tolton (April 1, 1854 – July 9, 1897), was the first Roman Catholic priest in the United States, publicly known to be Black when he was ordained in 1886. He was born into slavery in Missouri and was Baptized and reared Catholic. After responding to his call to the priesthood, Tolton studied formally in Rome and was ordained there on Easter Sunday at the Cathedral-Archbasilica of St. John Lateran; after which he was assigned to the diocese of Alton (now Diocese of Springfield). Father Augustus first served to his home parish in Quincy, Illinois with tremendous success and was later assigned to Chicago where he led the development and construction of St. Monica’s Catholic Church as a Black “national parish church”, completed in 1893 at 36th and Dearborn Streets on Chicago’s South Side. Read more about Father Augustus Tolton
I have taken the liberty to incorporate much of his prayers into the following seven prayers that I have created as guidelines of sorts as we pray for blacks all over America. You might consider copying the prayers and using them as a guide in praying one the prayers each day. Amen
Father in heaven, I pray for every man and woman in every black community who knows the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior, Lord and King, whose faith is grounded in Christ Jesus that together they might be unified in one faith, one Lord, and God. I pray Father for the lost in every black community to be convicted by the Holy Spirit of their sin, of righteousness and judgment just as Jesus promised in John 16:8 that lost people would be. I pray for the presence of the Lord Christ Jesus in the believers in every black community, to become so supreme that it will enable the Holy Spirit to work to conform all the saints into the image of Christ before you, O God our Father. Amen.
I pray O Holy Father that the Holy Spirit, the one who guides believers into all truth, will begin to convict the lost youth in every black community in America that Jesus Christ died for their sins and that through Him they can have eternal life. I pray for their moral grounding in the teachings of Christ our Lord, so that they might be living witnesses to the youth all around them. I pray Holy Father for a strengthening of the spirits of every believer in every black community so that they might be guided and protected in all truth, and thereby able to withstand all assaults by the Evil One. Amen.
Heavenly Father, I pray for families and marriages in every black community in America to be strengthened through the prayers of the Saints. I pray that healthy life styles will be incorporated into the lives of every black family which will prove to be beneficial for the black community as a whole. Father I pray that all husbands will love their wives as Christ loved the Church and love their wives as their own bodies. Father I pray that each wife will embrace her God given role as a woman, wife, and mother, as a testimony in her household as to what a godly woman looks like and is. Father, I pray for the sanctity and dignity of marriages in the black community in America. I pray for the end of all sexual impurity and promiscuity that has resulted in far too many fatherless homes. I pray for the restoration of true Christ-like masculinity for black men, and for young black women to be befriended by the godly black women in their communities who will serve as examples of faithful and virtuous womanhood. Amen.
Holy Father, I pray for an end of all forms of violence and for an everlasting peace in the black communities all over America. O Prince of Peace, convict blacks all over our country that violence against each other portrays to the world that blacks are a backward, primitive, undisciplined and unlawful people and it robs them of their future. I pray, O Holy Father, that blacks might come to know Christ Jesus and begin to see Him in each other. I pray Father, that blacks will begin to pursue peace and that they might go from seeing Jesus in each other, to loving each other through Him. I pray that Your grace will so empower them that their testimony will be: Christ in them the Hope of Glory. I pray Holy Father for peace to begin to reign in black communities throughout this nation. Amen.
Holy Father, I pray that the doors of opportunity will begin to open to Christ filled blacks all over this nation. And will open even more fully to those who have sacrificed and gotten an education. I pray O Lord for the Holy Spirit’s gifts of wisdom, understanding, and knowledge to pour out abundantly over the Black community in America. I pray that the schools and universities that service these communities will be blessed with the resources, staff, and faculty they need to achieve their goals. I pray that Christian Schools all over America will begin to extend scholarships to black Christian children, especially to the poor and to the disadvantaged. Amen.
Heavenly Father, I seek your intercession for the spiritual needs of the Black community in America, as I also ask for Your hand of blessings be upon their material needs. I pray O Holy Father for those in the black communities to have more and more opportunities in finding gainful employment, so that all might have the resources they need to provide for themselves, their families, and support those in need in their communities. Amen.
Father in heaven, I pray that you will open the eyes of black people to their great loss of precious treasure from the black communities in America through the tragedy of abortion. I pray O Lord, for a quickening of the Holy Spirit in the Black community so that its conscience will be awakened to know that each child conceived belongs to You God, and that You God have given each precious child a plan and purpose for its life. Father, I pray for an end of sexual exploitation, adultery, and pre marital sex because it is an abomination to You. I pray that young people will come to understand the joy it brings to You Holy Father when they live clean, wholesome, chaste lives. Amen.
To God be the Glory, hallelujah Amen. The end!
AN EPILOGUE TO RACISM MONGERING
By Tom Hanson
In Ephesians 6:12-13, speaking to believers, Paul the apostle said very plainly:
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
Again, still speaking to believers in 2 Corinthians 10:3-6, the apostle Paul said:
“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled”.
There is no doubt in my mind, or in the Holy Spirit crafted understanding in my heart, that the apostle Paul is giving a warning to believers. The warning is that there are powers of darkness in this world, with which all believers are going to have to struggle during our time here on earth. Though Paul is addressing his words to believers in these verses, other scriptures reveal that these powers of darkness come against all of God’s creation.
In our world today we have an incomprehensible amount of violence perpetrated by Muslims against Christians and Jews - both Gods’ people, almost all over the world. Though there is almost no one in media, nor in the pulpit these days, who will proclaim it, this violence is perpetrated by the god of darkness, Satan himself. The god of Islam, regardless what this present pope says, is the god of darkness. If you recall, the pope said, while visiting in America last December that Jews, Christians and Muslims all serve the same God. You can read it for yourself:
“Jesus Christ, Jehovah, Allah. These are all names employed to describe an entity that is distinctly the same across the world.” So saith the pope!
The fact is the pope is wrong about our God and Allah being the same. He is also wrong about other things, but I must hold my tongue and continue with my thoughts on the violence taking place in America today and who is basically behind it.
Let’s do a short revue of Parts 1 -5:
At this present time we have in our own nation, blacks declaring war on white police officers because of perceived racism on the part of some white officers of the law. Yet, a close look at the number of crimes committed by white policemen against blacks, compared with the number of crimes committed by blacks against policemen, reveals a different reality.
Blacks kill more police officers, black and white, than police officers kill blacks. In addition, blacks assault, rape and kill more white people than whites assault, rape and kill blacks. These two revelations are astounding when you consider the percentages of the population of the USA that are made up by blacks and whites.
In 2014 the estimated populations by race/ethnic groups were: Whites 62%, blacks 12%, Hispanics 18% and Asian 6%.
Percentages of crimes committed in 2012 by race/ethnic groups were: Whites 69.2%, blacks 28.4%, Hispanics 1.5% and Asians 0.9%.
Percentages of the crime of negligent manslaughter committed in 2012 by race/ethnic groups: Whites 48%, blacks 49.7%, Hispanics 1.3% and Asians 1.0%.
Percentages of the crime of robbery committed in 2012 by race/ethnic groups: Whites 42%, blacks 55.6%, Hispanics 0.8%, Asians 0.7%.
These statistics almost makes me wish I had been born Asian. However, as the old saying goes that is neither here nor there. What I want readers to take away from this epilogue may be very shocking to those who are not believers. I did not stick these statistics in here to disparage blacks. I use these stats to show that there is a problem of crime in our black culture and our black communities, so that we will begin, as believers in Jesus Christ, to pray especially for those blacks engulfed in a battle with Satan (without access to the armor of God) and to pray more intelligently.
In the passages of scripture from Ephesians and 2 Corinthians quoted above I believe Paul is revealing to believers that Satan, the prince of darkness, is going to do everything he can to destroy our relationship with the Lord. Let’s look at Merle F. Unger comments on the verses in Ephesians:
“The warrior's resources. The Christian inevitably engages the opposition and spiritual resistance of Satan and his hosts. Thus, as a Spirit-filled warrior he must continually 'be strong' or strengthen himself with the armor provided for him. The ground of the warrior's strength is his position 'in the Lord.' His strength is 'in His [Christ's] mighty power.' When the Christian takes into account his position in Christ and appropriates the provided armor, the Holy Spirit empowers him to make good the new life in resisting Satanic attack. The New Unger's Bible Handbook.
I believe Mr. Unger is absolutely correct. However, all indications from what I am reading and observing is that these folks for whom I am asking believers everywhere to pray, have yet to believe in Jesus as their Savior and Lord.
Therefore, in our intercession we aren’t asking God to send a strong warrior in Christ to come alongside a brother who is back sliding and doing all sorts of horrible things, so that he or she will turn from their sins and back to their first love. My humble opinion is that anyone who is committing robbery, assaults, rapes and murder at will, is not a Spirit-filled individual by any stretch of the imagination. Therefore, if my opinion is correct, those for whom we are going to be praying are lost people who are involved in a life of crime. How then should we pray?
I would pray, asking God the Father in Jesus’ name, to begin doing two things in their lives. 1.) Break Satan’s stronghold(s) in the lives of those for whom we are praying! 2.) Draw the lost person(s) to His Son; In that order! Here is why.
People who are committing rape, robbery, assaults and murder are so severely bound by the chains and shackles of the evil one, and their hearts are so full of bitterness, vileness, and hate for God that before the Holy Spirit can get a conviction into their hearts, even edgewise, there must be room in their hearts to hold that God given desire to be receptive to the Holy Spirits work in their lives.
Now you might be wondering: Do believers have the God given right or permission to pray so boldly that they would ask God to break the chains and shackles of Satan?
My answer is emphatically “YES”! Based on what Jesus promised you and me, as believers, in John 14: 14;
“And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it!” John 14:13-14.
Why must we ask God to draw the lost people to Christ?
Because of what Jesus told us in John 6:44:
“No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day”.
Drawing any lost person to the Lord Jesus is that wonderful work of God and He always chooses to involve people, places, things and whatever else that pleases Him.
I say this, not boastfully, nor full of pride, that God can and will use who ever avails themselves, in the drawing of lost people into His forever family. That is why I am calling on people who read this to begin praying for black people all over this nation who are involved in any kind of crime, to turn from the schemes of Satan and to the Lord Jesus, who alone can save them from the fires of hell. By the way, by praying, you are availing yourself to God.
Now, may God richly bless each one of you who is committed to join me daily in praying for blacks who are being used as tools of Satan all over this nation, that they turn from the god of this world to the Lord Jesus and His Father, the great God and ruler of the universe!
“The LORD bless you and keep you; The LORD make His face to shine upon you, And be gracious to you; The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, And give you peace.”
The following is a blog page for Parental Care Ministries trip to Uganda this summer 2016. My nephew, Adam McMahon, teacher at Lindale High School in Texas is one of the adults on this trip. Adam took his daughter, Mahayla with him on this mission trip. They and their co-team members were a blessing to a lot of Uganda children where they held their summer program.
Team 62 had a great time at the PCM radio station, Glory FM! Diana Martinez was able to give the testimony of her son’s adoption from China on air. It is a powerful story of God’s faithfulness and how it brought him to Uganda. Read on as she shares about this opportunity.
Exactly how wise is it to take a child who was once an orphan himself to a country that is full of abandoned children?
Would the old friend depression regain a grip on his heart? Would it cloud him with those old feelings of abandonment? Would some unrealized memory thrust itself to the forefront of his mind?
These were the questions my husband and I were wrestling with as we were deciding whether or not to allow our oldest son, Tikki, to join me and my (biological) daughter, Jodie, on a PCM mission trip.
In the end, we felt like the cultures of China and Uganda are so very different from each other that our son would likely gain some new understanding and insight.
Yes, it was worth the risk. Tikki was headed for Uganda. But boy oh boy, did God have something even greater than new insights for TIkki in mind for our trip.
Being a behind the scenes kind of a gal, my father (who is heavily involved with Glory FM) received a slight roll of the eyes when he told me that he had arranged for me to go on air when in Uganda. Don’t doubt for a minute that I can run my mouth, that’s not the issue, I just prefer to do so on a more private platform. What could I talk about live on air to such a huge audience unfamiliar with my Texas draw? Then the small still voice suggested, “Tell Tikki’s story.” With his permission, I did so.
Abandoned at Tiananmen as a toddler
who was unable to walk or crawl, Tikki was found by police and placed into a wonderful foster family.
(Tikki is at the bottom right.)
He had a severe spinal malformation, a birth defect. After many happy years with his “family” the government showed up one day and took Tikki away from the only home he had ever known and put him into an orphanage.
In time, we decided to adopt from China and Tikki’s profile was one of three that we received. As it was time for me to fly to Beijing to pick Tikki up and bring him home, he developed an infection along the rods attached to his spine. Although, I did fly to China, they would not release him to come home with me. Two attempts and one surgery later,
I was finally able to bring our son home.
Severe depression ruled his life for a long time. He would sit on his bed and go into deep sulking episodes. Eventually, Tikki became a Christian and we were able to identify his depression and deal with it. It was the very thing that caused his depression, that awful cloud of regret and obsession that ruled his young heart for so long. That was the very thing that ultimately brought Tikki to America and eventually to the Lord. His birth defect. That spinal malformation that he so hated was the means by which God brought about redemption for Tikki.
Tears were streaming down Tikki’s face. He was standing right behind me as I was telling his story live on Glory FM. Who would have thought that a Chinese orphan would one day come to Uganda to share a message of hope and redemption through heartache and depression?
Only God can bring such beauty from such ashes. And He used PCM’s Glory FM to do so.
When I (Adam McMahon) was asked to write a short blog I couldn’t help but think about the “Uganda Time” theory. In Uganda, if you say, “I will come and pick you up at 3:30 “ It could possibly be 4:30 or 5:00 by the time you get picked up. There is always time in Uganda.
A time to be born,
and ride a Boda Boda (motorcycle)!
Whether you have heard the familiar lyrics from the Byrds, or you have read Ecclesiastes, there is a time to every purpose under heaven. What is that purpose?
I weep inside when I think of our fast paced society in America. We are surrounded by distraction after distraction. We constantly fill time slots in our schedule. When you think about that for just one second, when do we make time for God?
10 minutes in the morning? At church? I cringe when I think about the leftovers I give him. God created us to have a relationship with him and to embrace the beauty that God has created for us to enjoy.
If we gave our spouse that much time, the end result wouldn’t be very good. Thank God he never leaves us or gives us leftovers. So just to give you an encouraging word to take from all of this…
Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not on your understanding; in all your ways submit to him and he will make your pathways straight. (Proverbs 3:4-5)
Make time for God today! Identify ways to acknowledge him. Look at his beautiful creation. Reach out to someone
whether it’s holding a hand
or just a warm embrace.
Take time to sing songs together,
or play instruments
and worship our Lord and Savior.
Play with your children because one day they will not want to play anymore! Talk with someone you don’t know regardless of skin color or political views.
Nephew Adam in the blue shirt.
Give yourself away and let God use you. Whether that means serving in the U.S or another country ministering to those in need. You will understand God’s will, his good and perfect will. How Great the Love our father has lavished on us that we shall be called children of God. (1 John 3:1)
Lastly, God has shown me through my experience here that spending time serving with my daughter (Mahayla) is truly a blessing in disguise. Ugandan time has shown me that God’s timing is perfect. Although I was heart broken because my wife could not go on her March trip to Uganda, one in which she so badly wanted, God had another plan. A plan where we will be having another member added to our family. Praise God, Praise Him! Mahayla is growing before my eyes and I have seen God’s hand in her life.
Mahayla and three of her Uganda friends.
She has a servant heart and has loved on these young children of God. Thank you Lord for restoring the joy of my salvation and for showing me your beautiful creation. – Amena
I had numerous reasons for wanting to come to Uganda with Parental Care Ministries (PCM). I was content to just sponsor a child (and even that was more driven by my lovely “mukazi” (wife)—but after seeing the kids on choir tour and attending the PCM conference hosted by my church, I thought about actually coming on a trip. Again—“my agenda” was more about making it a teaching moment for my 11-year old son, Michael. He is a sweet, funny, intelligent, athletic, and handsome boy who is all too quickly growing up.
I wanted to ensure that as he grows up he has perspective on how blessed he is and to be outwardly focused and give back. Of course, I wanted to meet our sponsor child—but truthfully, it was more about teaching my son. As God is so good about doing—He will surprise you in how He can/will replace your “agenda” with His purpose to accomplish a work in you and others.
To me, “sponsorship” was more about financial support (which to me was perfectly fine) than relationship. I was never very “intentional” about letter writing or any form of connection with our sponsor child (Augustine—pictured below).
This trip has opened my eyes to the fact that PCM is more about building relationship than the financial support aspect. I’ve seen with my own eyes the difference between those who were already being intentional with building a relationship with their sponsor children and those (like me) who was content to let it be more about financial support due to my perceived time constraints. Some were meeting their sponsored children for the first time too—but seemed to have already developed a rapport/relationship with them via letters.
All of us desire a connection / relationship—it’s how God designed us—to have a relationship with Him but also connections to others around us. These children are no different—they desire that connection as well. Don’t get me wrong—they are VERY appreciative of sponsorship and are cognizant of the blessing that it is (it changes lives)—but I think WE are missing out on the larger blessing of RELATIONSHIP and connection with children and people who can teach US so many things from putting God first DAILY and trusting Him for EVERYTHING (instead of…thanks God, but I’ve got this from here…but that’s a whole additional blog .
I came to teach my son about giving back (largely financially) to bless others and to use my love of photography to capture that process of learning—but, while He may use the trip for that purpose in my son, He has used the trip to open my eyes about being more intentional with relationship and in trusting Him daily (I’ve always tried to recognize Him for so many blessings He’s given my family—but there is always a tendency to want to “help” Him or direct the agenda). He’s also used it to redefine my definition of “poor”—these wonderful people may be “poor” in the eyes of many—but it is definitely NOT in SPIRIT or JOY! I’m sure they’re just as prone to being “normal” people in many ways—we all have a sin nature (thus the need for a savior)—but they truly rely on Him DAILY and will stop in the middle of anywhere and pray over a need.
I have seen and experienced so much during this period—and the intended purposes were not always as I planned (God’s good about that—and I’m thankful).
I’ve seen the relationships that were already developed despite never having met—and I saw the connection and mutual blessings as a result.
I’ve seen joyful spirits despite having come through circumstance that many could not have endured (the definition of joy—it comes from God).
The older children look after the young ones (and the age difference isn’t always that much).
Mahayla and a Unganda friend.
I’ve seen the faces of children who have lost their sponsors—and it is devastating (and convicting because we had a false-start many years ago with sponsorship before becoming more engaged with PCM). I believe that God is at work via PCM in Uganda and now see that relationships are a vital part of the long-term success.
Michael and I will definitely return—hopefully with my wife and girls (when they are a few years older). In the meantime, we will be more intentional about developing a relationship with Augustine (and others as we add more—this trip has given the opportunity to meet and connect with potential candidates).
Mukama asiimwe (Praise the Lord)
Black Woman Obliterates the Left’s Muhammad Ali Love Fest With 1 Brutal Question
Posted June 11, 2016
For the past week, liberals nationwide has been celebrating the life of Muhammad Ali as a champion of liberal causes and a Muslim-American activist who stood up against injustice.
Mona Walter has taken issue with this and posted a video on YouTube in which she called liberals out for (once again) being complete hypocrites when it comes to Islam.
“Something is wrong when (a) black man converted to Islam in modern time,” she explained. “Something is wrong with that because Islam is the religion of slavery … Muhammad is a master, a slave master. So how is that this Muhammad Ali is fleeing a slave master and he went to another slave master?”
Walter had an excellent point. It is well documented that the religion of Islam, and many people who practice it, believe in slavery. In fact, there are thousands of slaves in the Middle East right now, yet liberals don’t seem to care about those.
“The Muslim Arabs, they had slaves, black slaves like me, from Africa! They had black slaves in the 60s! And this man converted to Islam. Something is wrong with that. That is you are a traitor. You betrayed your African race,” she exclaims.
Liberals seem to gloss over this fact. They are more than happy to remind America that we used to be a slave nation, but they continue to ignore horrific conditions in the Middle East.
The Islamic State terror group has thousands of slaves. Some are sex slaves, others are used for manual labor. Despite all this slavery, liberals are more concerned with trying to figure out whether just saying the words “Donald Trump” means you are a racist.
Liberals need to get their priorities straight and focus on ending the horrific atrocities being committed in the Middle East before they start lecturing anyone on imaginary racism.
So, let us end this essay by asking the one all important question again. How is it that Cassius Clay would flee one slave master just to embrace another slave master, after whom he renamed himself?
THE PARTY’S OVER FOR PRO-ISRAEL DEMOCRATS
By Jonathan Tobin, Commentary—
May 27, 2016
The names of those chosen to be on the Democratic Party platform committee were announced yesterday, and the headlines were about Bernie Sanders getting his due. Sanders was able to name five of the 15 members of the committee with Hillary Clinton getting six and Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz naming four. The group will have plenty to argue about as they decide just how far to the left they will tilt as Democrats prepare for the general election. But it is also painfully obvious that one of the clear points of disagreement will be about Israel and the Palestinians.
Three of Sanders’ picks are outspoken opponents of Israel. While there are some clear supporters of the Jewish state among the others chosen, there are also others who are deeply critical of Israel. It is not clear that such a group can possibly arrive at a consensus and avoid a painful floor fight about how “even handed” Democrats will claim to be about the Middle East conflict, we do know one thing, any pretense of this being a pro-Israel party is now officially exploded.
The reports that the Sanders camp is planning on making demands that the platform move away from the unambiguously pro-Israel document it has put forward at past conventions were confirmed when we learned the names of the committee members his campaign selected. They include: Representative Keith Ellison of Minnesota, the first Muslim in Congress and a fierce critic of Israel though he does have good relations with Minnesota’s Jewish community; James Zogby, president of the Arab-American Institute and someone who has fought for many years to distance the Democrats from the Jewish state; and academic Cornel West, an advocate for the BDS — boycott, divest, sanction — movement that advocates for economic war on Israel in order to isolate and ultimately destroy it. Among Clinton’s picks was Neera Tanden, head of the Center for American Progress think tank, who is not an opponent of Israel per se but a fierce critic of the Netanyahu government, even if her group did allow the prime minister to speak at one of their events.
One that calls for a response
Jonathan S. Tobin, writing in Commentary said: “Pro-Israel Democrats must, if they are honest, now admit they are no longer a clear majority within their party. Sanders and the far left may not yet be in complete charge of the Democrats, but their influence is undeniable and increasingly decisive…The Democrats have ceased to be a pro-Israel party and become one where Israel-haters are not only welcomed but given honor and power. If they are honest, pro-Israel Democrats must understand that they are on their way out in their old political home. Anyone who doesn’t understand that’s one of the clear outcomes of the 2016 campaign is in a state of denial.”
God says: “Deep in his heart; there is no fear of God before his eyes. For he flatters himself in his own eyes that his iniquity cannot be found out and hated. The words of his mouth are trouble and deceit; he has ceased to act wisely and do good. He plots trouble while on his bed; he sets himself in a way that is not good; he does not reject evil.”… “For when he dies he will carry nothing away; his glory will not go down after him. For though, while he lives, he counts himself blessed —and though you get praise when you do well for yourself— his soul will go to the generation of his fathers, who will never again see light. Man in his pomp yet without understanding is like the beasts that perish.” (Psalm 36:1-4; 49:17-20)
Laura Ingraham Interview with Joe DiGenova on Hillary Clinton-Commentary!
Summary of eRumor:
Copied from the website of Truth or Fiction
"SO WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE!"
I believe any reader with a modicum of intelligence can read this interview and see that if justice is done, Hillary will never become president of the USA ever and should spend time in federal prison for the crimes she committed as SOS.
In an interview with Laura Ingraham, former U.S. attorney Joe DiGenova said Hillary Clinton “would not make it to the finish line” in her presidential campaign because the FBI will recommend that she faces criminal charges for using a private email server while secretary of state.
Joe DiGenova predicted that Hillary Clinton would be indicted for criminal conduct related to her use of a private email server — but that doesn’t mean it’s true.
Joe DiGenova made the comments during a January 5th appearance on the Laura Ingraham Radio Show. He said that the FBI “has so much information about criminal conduct by her and her staff and there is no way that they walk away from this,” according to a transcript:
DiGenova: Hillary Clinton’s going to have problems because of what’s in the emails, but also the classifications. Her biggest problem right now is the FBI. They’re not going away. They have reached a critical mass in their investigation of the Secretary and all of her senior staff. And, it’s going to come to a head, I would suggest, in the next sixty days. And, I predict Hillary will not make it to the finish line. She’s not going to be able to complete her campaign. The criminal investigation must focus on her and all the people around her. And, if Jim Comey, the FBI director, is doing his job, which I expect him to do as an honorable man, she cannot be the nominee of the Democratic Party. She’s going to have to be charged with the crime. It’s going to be a very complex matter for the Department of Justice, but they’re not going to be able to walk away from it. She and her staff have committed numerous federal crimes involving the negligent and improper handling of classified information. They are now at over 1,200 classified emails. And, that’s just for the ones we know about from the State Department. That does not include the ones that the FBI is, in fact, recovering from her hard drives.
Ingraham: So, Hillary testifies on Capitol Hill and says she did not receive classified – did she say receive or send? You always have to parse the words with Hillary. That is false. Correct?
DiGenova: She has actually said both things. And, she’s also then modified to say, none of them were marked classified. But, she has definitely made false statements, under oath, both in interviews and on Capitol Hill. She has not yet been interviewed by the FBI in their investigation. That will be the final step in her investigation. But, as a matter of fact, the Bureau has so much information about criminal conduct by her and her staff that there is no way that they walk away from this. They are going to make a recommendation that people be charged and then Loretta Lynch is going to have the decision of a lifetime.
Ingraham: Do you have confidence that Loretta Lynch, from what we saw with her handling of the Baltimore riots and all that, is going to okay, green light an indictment of Hillary Clinton in an election year?
DiGenova: I believe that the evidence that the FBI is compiling will be so compelling that, unless she agrees to the charges, there will be a massive revolt inside the FBI, which she will not be able to survive as an Attorney General. It will be like Watergate. It will be unbelievable. The evidence against the Clinton staff and the Secretary is so overwhelming at this point that if, in fact, she chooses not to charge Hillary, they will never be able to charge another federal employee with the negligent handling of classified information. The intelligence community will not stand for that. They will fight for indictment and they are already in the process of gearing themselves to basically revolt if she refuses to bring charges.
Intelligence officials have claimed that Hillary Clinton’s email server contained information that was classified as “beyond top secret,” or Secret/Special Access Program (SAP), the intelligence community’s internal watch dog wrote in a letter to lawmakers.
For her part, Hillary Clinton has disputed those reports, and it’s still not clear exactly what information those emails allegedly contained.
TruthorFiction.com previously investigated claims that Hillary Clinton’s email server contained SAP information, and we deemed it “unproven” due to lack of information. Click here to read that report.
But we can say Joe DiGenova’s central claim — that charges related Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server — will somehow disqualify her from running for president, have proven false.
Former Attorney General Michael Mukasey initially made that claim in August 2015, but he later changed his mind and said he was wrong.
TruthorFiction.com previously reported that the only U.S. Constitution outlines qualifications to be the president, and the only three are being at least 35 years old, having lived in the U.S. for at least 14 years, and having U.S. citizenship.
That means criminal charges related to the email fiasco wouldn’t legally “disqualify” Hillary Clinton, but it could make her unelectable.
So, Joe DiGenova predicted that Hillary Clinton would not be able to finish her presidential campaign, but that doesn’t make it true. That’s why we’re classifying this one as “commentary.”
The inaugural address we won’t hear next January, but should
The mere possibility of a Donald Trump presidency — gold-plated faucets in the house first occupied by John and Abigail Adams — will perhaps have a salutary effect. It might demystify an office that has become now swollen with inappropriate powers and swaddled in a pretentiousness discordant with a republic’s ethic of simplicity. This wholesome retreat from presidential grandiosity would be advanced if on Jan. 20, 2017, the 45th president delivered the following inaugural address:
My fellow Americans, brevity is not only the soul of wit and the essence of lingerie, it is, on occasions such as this, polite. You who are arrayed in front of me, losing the feeling in your feet as you stand on the frozen Mall, should be spared a long soliloquy by someone who, as a presidential candidate, inflicted on you an excruciating amount of talk.
Besides, you have hired me only to administer one of our three branches of government, and only for four years. So let’s avoid unseemly excitement about today’s routine transfer of power. Years ago, Dallas Cowboy Duane Thomas said this about another recurring extravaganza, the Super Bowl: “If it’s the ultimate game, how come they’re playing it again next year?” I may ask Mr. Thomas to be my press secretary, if I decide to have one.
I probably will not have one because I hope weeks will pass without having to bother you with reminders of my existence. Weeks during which there will be nothing much of importance to hear from or about me as I go about the humdrum business of seeing that the laws enacted here on Capitol Hill are faithfully executed.
In the next four years, beloved entertainers will die, local law enforcement disputes will occur, March Madness will come and go — and I will have nothing to say about any of these things because they are unrelated to my duties, which do not include serving as national pastor-cum-pundit.
As is traditional, at the conclusion of these remarks I shall eat lunch in the Capitol with Congress. But before doing this, I shall pay a tribute to Congress, which the Constitution’s Article I establishes as the first branch of government. My tribute will be to delay joining its members for the 10 minutes or so it will take to sign a stack of executive orders nullifying most executive orders issued by my predecessor. He used them to wield executive power to institute policies and alter laws that properly should be initiated by Congress.
This will be enough business for Day One of my first 100 days. And I promise you this: On the 100th day of my administration, America will be ... pretty much indistinguishable from what it is today. Would you, my over-excited countrymen, really want it any other way? Would you really want to live in a nation that can be substantially changed in a matter of a few months by a hyperactive government?
For efficiency, and to minimize unnecessary folderol, I am going to take a minute right now to deliver my first and last State of the Union address. It is this one sentence: Things are much better than they once were — slavery? gone; the Oregon Trail? replaced by the Interstate Highway System — but things could be better.
There. Wasn’t that less disagreeable than the annual midwinter prime-time pep rally that presidents stage because of the Constitution’s blurry mandate that the president “shall from time to time give to the Congress information” about the country’s condition? How quaint. As though Congress is interested in information.
After today’s lunch, Congress should try nibbling at the edges of our problems, many of which Congress created to please you, the clamorous people. To you I say: We have nothing to fear but your insufficient fear of what has been done on your behalf and at your behest.
In the 2016 “contest of opinion through which we have passed” — Thomas Jefferson’s decorous description, at his first inauguration, of the ferocious 1800 campaign — a trillion words were spoken, approximately none about the public’s appetite for unfunded government entitlement programs.
If you want the United States to be Puerto Rico writ large — or, even worse, Illinois — just stay the course you are on. In words Lincoln spoke at his first inauguration, the nation’s fate is “in your hands, my dissatisfied fellow-countrymen, and not in mine.”
The following was sent to me by a dear friend. It was published last May in the Baltimore Sun, yet I have never heard anyone in the media mention this article. The astounding thing about this piece is the guts the writer had in publishing the truth in a media and culture that distains the truth and turns a blind eye only in truths direction.
So True and So Sad.
“The Baltimore Sun” is definitely not known as a Conservative newspaper, this very well written assessment of the situation in USA comes as something of a surprise. Some great thoughts about other races that have come to the USA and successfully integrated into our society.
The Black Dilemma "For almost 150 years the United States has been conducting an interesting experiment. The subjects of the experiment: black people and working-class whites.
The hypothesis to be tested: Can a people taken from the jungles of Africa and forced into slavery be fully integrated as citizens in a majority white population?
The whites were descendants of Europeans who had created a majestic civilization. The former slaves had been tribal peoples with no written language and virtually no intellectual achievements. Acting on a policy that was not fair to either group, the government released newly freed black people into a white society that saw them as inferiors. America has struggled with racial discord ever since.
Decade after decade the problems persisted but the experimenters never gave up. They insisted that if they could find the right formula the experiment would work, and concocted program after program to get the result they wanted. They created the Freedmans Bureau, passed civil rights laws, tried to build the Great Society, declared War on Poverty, ordered race preferences, built housing projects, and tried midnight basketball.
Their new laws intruded into people’s lives in ways that would have been otherwise unthinkable. They called in National Guard troops to enforce school integration. They outlawed freedom of association. Over the protests of parents, they put white children on buses and sent them to black schools and vice-versa. They tried with money, special programs, relaxed standards, and endless hand wringing to close the achievement gap. To keep white backlash in check they began punishing public and even private statements on race. They hung up Orwellian public banners that commanded whites to Celebrate Diversity! and Say No to Racism. Nothing was off limits if it might salvage the experiment.
Some thought that what W.E.B. DuBois called the Talented Tenth would lead the way for black people. A group of elite, educated blacks would knock down doors of opportunity and show the world what blacks were capable of.
There is a Talented Tenth. They are the black Americans who have become entrepreneurs, lawyers, doctors and scientists. But ten percent is not enough. For the experiment to work, the ten percent has to be followed by a critical mass of people who can hold middle-class jobs and promote social stability. That is what is missing.
Through the years, too many black people continue to show an inability to function and prosper in a culture unsuited to them. Detroit is bankrupt, the south side of Chicago is a war zone, and the vast majority of black cities all over America are beset by degeneracy and violence. And blacks never take responsibility for their failures. Instead, they lash out in anger and resentment.
Across the generations and across the country, as we have seen in Detroit, Watts, Newark, Los Angeles, Cincinnati, and now Ferguson, rioting and looting are just one racial incident away. The white elite would tell us that this doesn't mean the experiment has failed. We just have to try harder. We need more money, more time, more understanding, more programs, and more opportunities.
But nothing changes no matter how much money is spent, no matter how many laws are passed, no matter how many black geniuses are portrayed on TV, and no matter who is president. Some argue it’s a problem of culture, as if culture creates people’s behavior instead of the other way around. Others blame white privilege.
But since 1965, when the elites opened Americas doors to the Third World, immigrants from Asia and India people who are not white, not rich, and not connected have quietly succeeded. While the children of these people are winning spelling bees and getting top scores on the SAT, black youths are committing half the country's violent crime, which includes viciously punching random white people on the street for the thrill of it that has nothing to do with poverty.
The experiment has failed. Not because of white culture, or white privilege, or white racism. The fundamental problem is that American black culture has evolved into an un-fixable and crime ridden mess. *They do not want to change their culture or society, and expect others to tolerate their violence and amoral behavior. They have become socially incompatible with other races by their own design, not because of the racism of others - but by their own hatred of non-blacks.*
Our leaders don't seem to understand just how tired their white subjects are with this experiment. *They don't understand that white people aren't out to get black people; they are just exhausted with them. They are exhausted by the social pathologies, the violence, the endless complaints, and the blind racial solidarity, the bottomless pit of grievances, the excuses, and the reflexive animosity.*
The elites explain everything with racism, and refuse to believe that white frustration could soon reach the boiling point."---
"You can't legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government can't give to anybody anything that the government doesn't first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they don't have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it."
The Baltimore Sun, May 30, 2015
"Friends are memories you never forget."Boy creates a flag for a class assignment. But no one expected THIS!
Subject: An American art projectThe men and women who serve America in the military deserve our full respect and support. They risk their lives around the world to keep us safe.Soldiers are why America is free. And when we have the chance to take care of veterans, we MUST always do so.Jacob, a young man from Indiana, designed an American flag for a school art project. What he did is going viral in a BIG WAY!Can you see what the fuss is about?
There are 4,466 army soldiers on the flag, painted red, white, and blue. It took more than 52 hours and was done in freezing weather.Here’s a closer look:
What a great way to honor the troops! Jacob deserves an A+ for his art project.
The coming Bible Ban
April 12, 2016
By Bill Wilson
The American Library Association has released its list of the top 10 "challenged" books in America. ALA provides the list to inform the public about censorship efforts that affect libraries and schools. The list is compiled from libraries, schools, and the media reports on attempts to ban books in communities across the country. ALA says the top three reasons cited for challenging books are that the material is considered sexually explicit, contains offensive language, and the material is unsuited to any age group. There is, however, another reason that has propelled this particular book to the top ten list of those challenged to be banned from libraries and schools across America. Religious content. The results are shocking.
Among books that are sexually explicit, promote sex outside of marriage, those about transgendered teens, promote homosexuality and violence, is The Holy Bible. It is the sixth most challenged book in America. This is the first time since ALA began keeping statistics in 1990 that the Bible has made the list, debuting at 6. In context, the ALA has compiled the lists of top 100 challenged books in the decades of 1990-1999 and 2000-2010. The Bible was not on those lists. In fact, the Bible was not on the ALA challenged book list from 2011-2014. This needs to sink in. This is the first time the Bible has ever been on this list and it made it to number six. This is not only an indicator of society, but of a dangerous road ahead.
ALA says that 85% of book challenges receive no media attention and remain unreported. According to this statistic, there is a possibility that the Bible could be far and away number one on the list if all incidents were reported. The only measure to make the list is the number of "documented requests to remove materials from schools or libraries." The largest groups of those who challenge books in general are two-fold: parents and administrators in public schools. Individual statistics on who challenged the Bible were not made public. An ALA spokesman said that there are complaints about the Koran, but not nearly as many as the Bible. In fact, the Koran doesn't even make the list.
This is a grave reflection on the recent direction of society. The Bible is not "challenged" substantially for decades, probably since the establishment of public schools and libraries in America, and it debuts as the sixth most challenged book in American libraries and public schools. While the "church" should be outraged, it also should be ashamed at the job it is doing. The self-indulgent, extra-biblical doctrines being taught over the past generation are having more impact than even the devil could have imagined. Our nation is turning dark. Parents are seeking to ban the Word of God. Psalm 119:105 says, "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." How dark are we to become?
Have a Blessed and Powerful Day!
Pope Francis Makes History by Calling for Gay Tolerance in Catholic Church
Note from the Website Editor (My comments are in parenthesis)
“Then hear Thou in heaven, and forgive the sin of Thy servants.” II Chronicles 6:27 (The Israel Bible™)
On Friday, Pope Francis made an official statement calling for Catholics worldwide to be more accepting of homosexuals, challenging an age-old position held by the Catholic Church, which has traditionally deeply condemned gay lifestyles and sexual activity.
While the Pope’s announcement did not signify a shift in official church doctrine, the 256-page document he released, an apostolic exhortation entitled “Amoris Laetitia” (“The Joy of Love”), outlined a significant change in attitude towards the Vatican’s stance on family matters, including same-sex relationships and divorce.
While the Pontiff did not condone gay marriage, he urged Catholics to be more tolerant of non-traditional lifestyles and those who practice them. “A pastor cannot feel that it is enough simply to apply moral laws…as if they were stones to throw at people’s lives,” said the document, as reported by CNN.
He discouraged such a stark worldview. “By thinking that everything is black and white, we sometimes close off the way of grace and growth,” he noted, adding that he believed Jesus Christ would have supported a similar perspective.
“I understand those who prefer a more rigorous pastoral care which leaves no room for confusion. But I sincerely believe that Jesus wants a Church attentive to the goodness which the Holy Spirit sows in the midst of human weakness.”
“Unjust discrimination” against gays and lesbians is not acceptable, he wrote in the document.
“There is no stereotype of the ideal family, but rather a challenging mosaic made up of many different realities, with all their joys, hopes and problems,” Pope Francis wrote.
(There may be no stereotypical ideal family, but God has given us the correct make up of a marriage, which is the nucleus of a true family, in Genesis 2:24: “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh”. Just in case the Pope doesn’t know it, God is saying in this verse that the only true marriage approved by Him is between a man and a woman.)
“Every person, regardless of sexual orientation, ought to be respected in his or her dignity and treated with consideration.”
(God also had something to say about sexual orientation. Through Paul, the apostle, God said we are not to keep company with sexually immoral people. God also said: not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner--not even to eat with such a person.)
However, he was careful to emphasize that “in no way must the Church desist from proposing the full idea of marriage,” stating, “[a] great variety of family situations … can offer a certain stability, but de facto or same-sex unions, for example, may not simply be equated with marriage.”
The leader of the Catholic church also touched on the sensitive issue of divorce in his paper. The Catholic church famously forbids divorce, viewing remarried divorcees as “living in sin” and excluding them from receiving communion.
While the Pope did not say explicitly that divorced Catholics should be allowed to take Communion, the document suggested that it should be easier for Catholic couples to have their marriages annulled, allowing them to continue to participate in church life.
“The divorced who have entered a new union should be made to feel part of the Church,” Pope Francis wrote. “It can no longer simply be said that all those living in any ‘irregular situation’ are living in a state of mortal sin.”
(After hearing that the Pope says there is no difference in the God of Jews and Christians and the god of Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, I suspect that true believers should probably shun his advice in any spiritual areas.)
IsThe Prophet Jeremiah’s Prophecy Coming True In America?
Thursday, April 7, 2016
I will fill thee with locusts
As the first Syrians are now on there way under the "president's" resettlement policy of bringing over 100,000 Islamic "refugees" from terrorist-sponsoring Syria, the same "president" is arguing with Congress and the Supreme Court whether he has the ability to forego the law and make some four million illegal aliens eligible for social security. According to CNSNews.com, on April 18, the Supreme Court will hear arguments on the case United States v. Texas, pitting the "president" against a majority of the states, which have joined in the litigation against the administration. It is essentially a test case as to whether a president can choose not to enforce the law, but there is far more than that at stake.
CNSNews.com reports that at issue is the White House policy called Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA), which would allow aliens in this country illegally who are parents of citizens or lawful permanent residents to stay in the US. The brief submitted by the Texas Attorney General to the Supreme Court on behalf of the states explains: "The Executive Branch unilaterally created a program--known as DAPA--that contravenes Congress's complex statutory framework for determining when an alien may lawfully enter, remain in, and work in the country." Bottom line, DAPA classifies illegals as "lawfully present," making over four million illegals eligible for Medicare and Social Security.
Part of this "president's" legacy is choosing the laws he wants to support and those he doesn't. We have seen this on numerous occasions since the beginning of his administration--off shore drilling, Defense of Marriage Act, Fast and Furious, border security, and immigration laws. The combined impact of this lawlessness is the invasion of the United States with lawbreakers, prospective terrorists, anti-democracy anarchists, and criminals. Aside from the attack on society--which costs billions a year in criminal acts, court defenses, and personal injury--Americans are being asked to aid and abet this invasion by shouldering the burden in "entitlements" such as health care, welfare, and even Social Security.
Add to this a report by The Tax Foundation that Americans on the average will spend more on federal, state, and local taxes in 2016 than on food, clothing, and housing combined. Those of us who work, do so an average of 114 days to pay for government programs. The cost of government policies, however, reach far beyond the tax bill. One cannot look at these policies without assigning a strategic weight to them. It appears that the Islamic Marxist in the White House is strategically accomplishing what the Lord prophesied through Jeremiah for judgment on Babylon, "Surely I will fill thee with men, as with locusts; and they shall raise a battle cry against thee." America faces an invasion of dependents whose first act of coming to the country is breaking the law. Another wave are from terrorist-sponsoring states where there is no way to vet their intent.
Have a Blessed and Powerful Day!
“For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. (These are those who have died and gone to heaven who believed in Jesus from His time here on earth until a few moments before the rapture.) 17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. (These are those who believe in Jesus right now and who do not die before the rapture of which we are speaking) And thus we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words”. 1 Thess. 4:16-18. )
“And a redeemer will come to Tzion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Yaakov, saith the LORD.” Isaiah 59:20 (The Israel Bible™)
The question of the timing of the arrival of the Messiah is on more lips than ever before. In videos published last week, two rabbis addressed this question to very different audiences.
Last month in Jakarta, Indonesia, Rabbi Tovia Singer taught an 8-hour seminar on Jewish ideas to a mixed audience of 100 Jews, Christians and high-ranking Muslim leaders and scholars. There are approximately 220 million Asian Muslims, 25 million Christians and fewer than 20,000 Jews in Indonesia.
Speaking to Breaking Israel News, Indonesia-based Singer said, “I’m asked to speak by non-Jews. They love that I teach Torah and answer their questions.”
As part of the seminar, Singer took questions from the audience. One audience member asked, “When will the Messiah come? What are the Jewish people waiting for?”
In the video of his response, Singer cautioned, “We are actually warned in Tanach (the Jewish Bible) never to make a calculation of when Moshiach (Messiah) will come. If someone tries to make a calculation of the time of the end, their bones will never be at rest in the grave. This is a very severe curse.
“Why is this such a great sin? Because if you say there is a date, you are saying that Isaiah is a liar. If you say there is a date, you’re saying that God is untruthful.”
Singer is referring to this verse in the Book of Isaiah:
And a redeemer will come to Tzion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Yaakov, saith the LORD. Isaiah 59:20
He continued his explanation. “Isaiah says, ‘What will trigger, what will spark the coming of Moshiach? The repentance of the Jewish people.’ That the people of Israel return to the God of Israel. So if you say there’s a specific time, that means it has nothing to do with the repentance of the Jewish people.
“You may be asking, ‘Why just the Jews? Why is their repentance so important?’ What is the role of the Jewish people? What is our job? What are we doing here?
“The role of the Jew is to be an ohr l’goyim, a light to the world. Before the Ten Commandments were given at Mt Sinai, the Almighty said that the Jewish people are to be ‘a kingdom of priests and a holy nation’. And therefore the role of the Jew is to be an example to the world of how to worship God.
“And it is for this reason that God punishes the Jewish people much more than any other nation. Because if we sin, we cause the world to sin. And if a Jew performs a mitzvah (Biblical commandment), does a good thing, it raises up the world.
“Therefore it’s not the clock that tells us when Moshiach is here, but it is a return of the Jewish people to their God that triggers the Messianic age.”
In an interview with Breaking Israel News, Singer spoke about the severity of the prohibition not to reveal the End of Days. He mentioned how the prophet Daniel started to give the calculation of when the End of Days would come and the Angel Gabriel ordered him to close the book.
But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end. Daniel 12:4
In response to the idea that the coming of Moshiach is dependent on the repentance of the Jews, Singer told Breaking Israel News, “Moshiach cannot come to a wicked generation, so God will force the Jewish people to repent. God will not stop waking us up, even if He needs to use the enemies of the Jews. Whatever it takes, God will tweak the circumstances until we have no choice except to repent.”
“It says in the gemara [Talmud] that if the Jews do teshuva (repent), then the geula (final redemption) is going to come b’chesed u’b’rachamim (with kindness and mercy). If they’re not going to do teshuva, I’m going to put a king on them whose decrees are going to be worse than Haman.”
Anava asked his audience, “We’ve been talking about Moshiach for thousands of years? Why now? The Torah itself is already giving us so many hints when Moshiach is coming.”
After reviewing hundreds of End of Days prophecies, which he compiled into a 300-page document, Anava asserted, “Right now, we are at the time for the geula to happen.”
Explaining that the suffering of slavery in Egypt was a necessary part of being able to get the Torah, Anava hinted to the grandeur in store for the world when Moshiach comes. “They suffered for 210 years [of slavery], and look at the Godly revelation that they got. They saw the Shechinah (feminine aspect of the the Divine) coming down on the mountain. Just imagine what type of revelation we are about to get, for waiting 2,000 years of suffering from this exile.”
Nevertheless, he said, “I don’t know how many people really, honestly wake up in the morning and they open the paper or whatever to see if Moshiach came. I don’t know how many people b’emet (in truth) really live like that. The point is, ‘Am I ready?’ Unfortunately, I believe that most will fail in the question if they really, really believe Moshiach can come now.”
The following comments are from the website editor of this website:
Knowing how imbecilic and demonic the Muslim extremist are, Iran's leadership can be depended upon to try to carry out Satan's demands before the Lord's return to set up the Millennial Kingdom. This kind of war could very well be a part of the Gog and Magog scenerio, or could be an independent action on the part of thisSatanically controlled part of our world. Perhaps the Lord is coming in the air for the saints sooner than some expect!
“And I will spur Mitzrayim against Mitzrayim; and they shall fight every one against his brother, and everyone against his neighbour; city against city, and kingdom against kingdom.” Isaiah 19:2 (The Israel Bible™)
Iran is preparing for an all-out war with the US, said Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Commander Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari on Tuesday at a gathering of senior IRGC commanders in Tehran.
Jafari said that Iran’s long-term military plan has been shaped by anticipation of a future war with America in which Iran would be the “decisive victors”. “For years, we have been building power on the presumption of a widespread war with the US and its allies, and have developed all our capacities and capabilities for decisive victories over such enemies,” he said, Tasnim News reported.
In a statement unlikely to surprise anyone paying attention to Iran’s constant anti-Western rhetoric and threats and its blatant dismissal of international condemnations of its arms developments, Jafari emphasized that a combative solution is prioritized over the weaker tools of diplomacy.
“Before political and diplomatic options, we have gotten prepared for a military option,” he said.
The announcement will surely come as a surprise to US President Barack Obama, who has often insisted that diplomacy is the only way to move forward in relation to Iran.
If the time should come for a military confrontation, Jafari predicted that, as in past conflicts in the region, the US will not be able “to do a damn thing” about it.
He added that Iran is also prepared to confront the “rude” and “stupid” behavior of Arab states who have allied themselves with the US, warning, “Regimes like Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and their peers are symbols of modern political underdevelopment, and the IRGC … has made preparations for response to their rudeness and stupid behavior, which stems from [their] reliance on the US power.”
Jafari also criticized certain Arab states for their “disgraceful” support of Israel, said Tasnim News, though the specific states were not named.
As for Iran’s missile program, which has repeatedly violated UN and international restrictions, the Iranian general promised that the regime will continue to develop and mass-produce ballistic missiles with higher accuracy and more destructive power in flagrant disregard of bans.
Its most recent offense occurred in March, when Iran tested multiple ballistic missiles in a move which a US State Department official said “violated the intent” of a United Nations resolution which aimed to curtail Iran’s missile activity.
Meanwhile, Russia is preparing to make its first shipment of S-300 surface-to-air defense systems to Iran in the coming days, a senior Russian official announced on Tuesday.
The arms deal was originally made in 2007 but prevented from going through by a UN Security Council sanction that limited weapons sales to Iran. Last year, on the heels of the controversial nuclear deal which five world powers signed with Iran, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a new contract to supply the Iranian regime with the missile defense systems.
You may have noticed that often during a conversation about Islam, someone points out that radical Muslims are but a small percentage of the whole Muslim population. That is true, but there is another percentage that rarely gets mentioned: the percentage of Muslims who want to make Sharia law the official law of a country.
A number of years ago, Pew Research interviewed nearly 40,000 Muslims in 39 countries concerning sharia law. Let’s start with the two countries where American troops have been for more than a decade. They found that 99 percent of Muslims in Afghanistan favor making sharia the official law of their country. The same poll found that 91 percent of Muslims in Iraq also believed sharia should be the official law of their country. It will be hard to bring democratic values to countries where nearly all the citizens believe that sharia law, not a constitution, should be the law of the land.
If you look at the list of other countries you see high percentages: 84 percent in Pakistan, 74 percent in Egypt, and 72 percent in Indonesia. In nearly every country surveyed, you had a substantial majority that believed that sharia law should be the official law of their country.
If you come to the United States, the percentages are different because (1) there are fewer Muslims in America, and (2) many Muslims have been willing to accept American democratic values. But that does not mean that sharia has not been implemented even here on a limited basis.
The Center for Security Policy published a paper awhile back that identified 146 cases of sharia law coming into conflict with American law. Granted these are not major cases but they still illustrate the willingness of Americans (both Muslim and non-Muslim) to accept some aspects of sharia law.
Radical Muslims may only be a small percentage of Muslims, however the percentage of Muslims who accept sharia law is much larger percentage.
After reading Kerby Anderson’s Viewpoints (below) one has to ask why individuals, especially women, would be in favor of Sharia law!! Maybe the percentages Anderson references are void of women input! Here are a few examples of this most intrusive and strict law:
Criticizing or denying any part of the Quran is punishable by death.
Criticizing or denying Muhammad is a prophet is punishable by death.
Criticizing or denying Allah, the moon god of Islam, is punishable by death.
A Muslim who becomes a non-Muslim is punishable by death.
A non-Muslim who leads a Muslim away from Islam is punishable by death.
A man can marry an infant girl and consummate the marriage when she is 9 years old!
A woman can have 1 husband, but a man can have up to 4 wives; Muhammad can have more.
A man can unilaterally divorce his wife but a woman needs her husband’s consent to divorce.
A man can beat his wife for insubordination.
A woman’s testimony in court, allowed only in property cases, carry half the weight of a man’s.
A woman cannot drive a car, as it leads to fitnah (upheaval).
A woman cannot speak alone to a man who is not her husband or relative.
Muslims should engage in Taqiyya and lie to non-Muslims to advance Islam.
And the list goes on…….
The Answer to Muslim Violence: Jesus
3/31/2016 12:01:00 AM - Jerry Newcombe
Virtually a week does not go by without some headline of a Muslim attack somewhere in the world. The latest stories involves the alleged crucifixion of a Christian priest on Good Friday, as well as an Easter suicide bombing targeting Christians in Pakistan, which killed 71 at last count.
Some Muslims get disgusted with their fellow Muslims for such attacks. What is the ultimate solution to radical Islam? I believe Jesus is the solution to whatever ails the individual, family, society, the country, and nations.
We have freedom in the West because wise leaders of time past recognized that humanity is best off when religion is not forced on anyone. Thomas Jefferson wrote the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom in 1777 (passed, 1786). This gave freedom to all in that state, regardless of religion.
Jefferson argues that it violates the principles of Jesus (“the holy author of our religion”) to force anyone as to how they believe.
Obviously, professing Christians have sometimes gotten this wrong through the ages---but Jesus, the Prince of Peace, does not operate that way.
So, how is Jesus the answer to the Muslims? I think some clues can be found within the Qur'an itself, for those willing to see the truth.
I had the privilege of learning many things about the Qur’an from the late Aril Edvardsen, a follower of Jesus from Norway who was a preacher. In 1998 and 1999, I went with him to Malawi, Africa and to Islamabad, Pakistan.
Aril held open air Gospel meetings for Muslims and Christians in these places, using the Bible and the Qur’an. His goal was for everyone to have a better understanding of who Jesus (Isa bin Miriam, Jesus, Son of Mary) really is.
Here are some things found in the Qur’an worth highlighting:
*The Gospel (injil) is good, according to the Qur’an, but it does not specify what the gospel is.
*The Qur’an uses the term “Jesus Christ.” Christ was not the last name of Jesus. It was His title. The Hebrew word is Messiah; in Greek, it is Christ; in English, it means Anointed One.
*The Qur’an calls Jesus “the Word of God.” This means God has communicated to us through Jesus.
*The Qur’an teaches Jesus is born of a virgin and was conceived by the Spirt of God. There are liberal “Christians”---including many “Christian” leaders---who do not even believe that.
*The Qur’an references briefly the miracles of Jesus.
*It also says that Jesus will return one day. But Christians and Muslims disagree on the details surrounding that.
So what’s the point of all of this? That we all hug and sing Kumbaya? No. The point is that there is One who can be found in the Qur’an itself who can bring personal peace and salvation to those who believe in Him.
But doesn’t the Qur’an teach that Jesus was not crucified, but rather Judas in His place? No, but commentators on the Qur’an proclaim that. But that is just an interpretation. Who is to say that that interpretation is the correct one?
What the Qur’an actually says is that the Jews claimed that they crucified Him, but they crucified Him not. That is technically correct. The Romans took the right to perform capital punishment out of the hands of the Jews in AD 10, and it was they who crucified Jesus.
Meanwhile, the Qur’an teaches two of the most important things about Jesus: that He dies and rises again. Specifically, in Surah 19:33, where Jesus is talking, it is written of Him: "’So peace is on me the day I was born, the day that I die, and the day that I shall be raised up to life (again)’! Such (was) Jesus the son of Mary: (it is) a statement of truth, about which they (vainly) dispute.”
Thus, the death and resurrection of Jesus are found in the Qur’an, although commentators dispute that too.
So why did Jesus die? When John the Baptist saw Jesus, he declared, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.”
Another great prophet, Isaiah, said that all of us like sheep have gone astray. But the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
When people come to believe in Jesus and ask Him into their hearts and ask Him to forgive their sins, they are amazed at the peace and positive transformation He brings. Through faith in Him, because of His substitutional death, we can find the removal of our guilt and shame, and find true forgiveness from all our sins. When people truly trust in Him, violence finds no place in their hearts.
As the late Andre Crouch sang, “Jesus is the answer for the world today. Above Him there’s no other. Jesus is the way…”
The Prophetic Islamic Invasion of the US
March 30, 2016
Islam has been at war with America for some 233 years, beginning with the birth of our nation and the onslaught of the Barbary Pirates of the Ottoman Empire. This has continued through the 9-11 terrorist attacks and several other smaller attacks on American soil and against Americans abroad ever since. But now, America is beginning to experience a type and shadow of the Babylon prophecy of Jeremiah 51:14, where the Lord says, "Surely I will fill thee with men, as with locusts; and they shall lift up a battle cry against thee." This invasion, aided and abetted by Congress and the office of the Presidency, is part of the Muslim Brotherhood strategy to takeover the US. The "president" is complicit in this strategy.
In his Easter weekend radio address, the "president," still referring to the Islamic State as "ISIL" (which includes Israel), said that the US will continue to allow Islamic immigrants into the US from terrorist nations such as Syria as a part of his strategy to defeat "ISIL." The White House web site summarizes the "president's" remarks: "that defeating ISIL remains our top military, intelligence, and national security priority. He reminded us that as we move forward in this fight, we must use the power of our example as a Nation that is open to refugees escaping ISIL's violence, refuses ISIL's hateful and violent propaganda, and rejects any attempt to stigmatize Muslim-Americans."
The "president's" strategy appears to be that America will defeat the Islamic State by bringing as many Muslims to the United States as possible. In his radio address he said: "Our openness to refugees fleeing ISIL's violence; our determination to win the battle against ISIL's hateful and violent propaganda--a distorted view of Islam that aims to radicalize young Muslims to their cause" was paramount to victory. He ignores Islam's history of war, terror, slave trade, human sex trafficking, violence against women and children, and drug trade continue today in every country where there is a Muslim majority. And the "president" appears to believe the way to defeat this history is to bring Islam to America.
Truth be told, Islam is at war with anyone who is not Islamic. It is using a dark and evil concept of "religion" to advance its fascism. Anyone who disagrees with its religion is labeled an Islamophobe, a bigot, even a racist rather than a wise discerner of the truth. As President John Quincy Adams wrote in the 1827 American Annual Register about the Islamic war against Christianity: "That war is yet flagrant; nor can it cease but by the extincture of that impostor, which has been permitted by Providence to prolong the degeneracy of man." Adams knew of the Genesis 16 prophecy of the father of Islam, Ishmael: "he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him." Adams understood then, what America seems not to understand today.
Have a Blessed and Powerful Day!
BUCHANAN TO OBAMA
By Patrick J. Buchanan
Posted March 29, 2016
You say we need to have a conversation about race in America. Fair enough. But this time, it has to be a two-way conversation. White America needs to be heard from, not just lectured to. This time, the Silent Majority needs to have its convictions, grievances and demands heard. And among them are these:
First, America has been the best country on earth for black folks. It was here that 600,000 black people, brought from Africa in slave ships, grew into a community of 40 million, were introduced to Christian salvation, and reached the greatest levels of freedom and prosperity blacks have ever known. Jeremiah Wright ought to go down on his knees and thank God he is an American.
Second, no people anywhere has done more to lift up blacks than white Americans. Untold trillions have been spent since the '60s on welfare, food stamps, rent supplements, Section 8 housing, Pell grants, student loans, legal services, Medicaid, Earned Income Tax Credits and poverty programs designed to bring the African-American community into the mainstream. Governments, businesses and colleges have engaged in discrimination against white folks -- with affirmative action, contract set-asides and quotas -- to advance black applicants over white applicants. Churches, foundations, civic groups, schools and individuals all over America have donated their time and money to support soup kitchens, adult education, day care, retirement and nursing homes for blacks.
We hear the grievances. Where is the gratitude?
Obama talks about new 'ladders of opportunity' for blacks. Let him go to Altoona? And Johnstown, and ask the white kids in Catholic schools how many were visited lately by Ivy League recruiters handing out scholarships for 'deserving' white kids?
Is white America really responsible for the fact that the crime and incarceration rates for African-Americans are seven times those of white America?
Is it really white America's fault that illegitimacy in the African-American community has hit 70 percent and the black dropout rate from high schools in some cities has reached 50 percent?
Is that the fault of white America or, first and foremost, a failure of the black community itself?
As for racism, its ugliest manifestation is in interracial crime, and especially interracial crimes of violence. Is Barack Obama aware that while white criminals choose black victims three percent of the time, black criminals choose white victims 45 percent of the time? Is Obama aware that black-on-white rapes are 100 times more common than the reverse, that black-on-white robberies were 139 times as common in the first three years of this decade as the reverse?
We have all heard ad nauseam from the Rev. Al about Tawana Brawley, the Duke rape case and Jena. And all turned out to be hoaxes. But about the epidemic of black assaults on whites that are real, we hear nothing.
Sorry, Barack, some of us have heard it all before, about 40 years and 40 trillion tax dollars ago.
This needs to be passed around because, this is a message everyone needs to hear!
OK, will you pass it on?
YES. I did but will you? I passed it on because I'm for a better America. I am Not racist, Not violent, Just not silent anymore.
In GOD we trust!
Cruz's Brussels Response: What More Do You Need?
By Lloyd Marcus
March 24, 2016
In response to the Islamic terrorist attack in Brussels, along with other commonsense solutions, Ted Cruz cited the success of the NYPD Muslim surveillance program.
Well, the mainstream media and Democrat talking heads went nuts, launching their usual shock-and-awe attack on anyone who refuses to bow their knee in worship to their god of political correctness. The left called Cruz an idiot and a racist, demanding his head on a platter.
And yet Cruz has not wavered, not walked back his solutions or blinked in his resolve to protect Americans. That's what I am talkin' about, folks. Ted Cruz is a rock-solid, character-driven, backbone-of-steel conservative, sold out to defending and advocating for We the People.
The Islamic terrorist attack in Brussels happened in the middle of a highly contentious U.S. presidential campaign. This is a time when candidates are typically extremely cautious about what comes out of their mouths, careful not to P.O. any group of voters. Cruz's immediate instinct was to throw political correctness to the wind. Cruz immediately came out with solutions rooted in the best interest of the American people that infuriated the left. Again, that's what I am talkin' about, folks.
There is an old parable about a man who was trapped on his roof during a flood. He prayed for God to reach down His hand and rescue him. He drowned. In Heaven, the man asked God why He did not answer his prayer. God said, I did. Before the water got too high, I sent a guy in a pickup truck. Then I sent people in a rowboat. Finally I sent a helicopter. You rejected them.
Folks, since 2008, alongside millions of patriots, I have been fighting Obama and his leftist associates' implementation of their fundamental transformation of America. Attending over 500 Tea Party rallies over the years, I have held patriots' hands and prayed for God to restore our great land.
We prayed for God to raise up strong conservative leaders who will keep their word when we send them to our nation's political Sodom and Gomorrah (Washington, D.C.). Sen Ted Cruz is among a rare few we sent to Washington who has remained true-blue to We the People and our Constitution. Cruz has paid a huge price for courageously standing up for We the People – hated by Democrats, the GOP establishment, and the mainstream media.
This is why, for the life of me, I cannot understand why anyone would not enthusiastically vote for Ted Cruz.
When those patriots get to Heaven, they will ask God: Why did you allow our Founding Fathers' inspired vision of America to fade away? Why did you allow government to double down on forcing all Americans to embrace sodomy against their faith? Why did you allow government to force taxpayers to fund the selling of dead baby heads for profit?
Patriots in heaven will say, “You promised to bless those who bless Israel and curse those who do not. Why did you allow government to betray our longtime ally, Israel?”
God will say to those patriots, “I answered your prayer, but you rejected it. I sent you Ted Cruz.”
Immigration numbers must be slashed to stop filling 'enabling pools' for terrorists
Sat. Mar 26th
I'm seeing a lot about "home-grown" terrorists from news media and open-borders enthusiasts.
They seem to be suggesting that the fact that many of the perpetrators were not recent immigrants means that immigration policies don't play a significant role in the wave of terror in Brussels, Paris, San Bernardino and the next target cities.
Of course, there are many factors other than immigration behind these tragedies. But regardless of whether these bad guys arrived in a country six months ago or lived their whole lives there, nearly every one of them operated from within immigrant communities.
Experts on organized crime have long noted that big foreign-culture communities unintentionally serve as the pools in which the bad guys can easily swim out of sight of the authorities.
Crime historians tell us that nearly every nationality that has immigrated to America over the last 200 years in a large wave has brought with it a new organized crime network. It isn't that those nationalities are filled with criminals. But the large unassimilated number of a nationality in a foreign land provides a space for the bad guys to swim with much less chance of detection.
For half a century, promiscuous immigration policies in Europe and the United States have been filling these "enabling pools" faster than assimilation has been able to empty them.
While security forces in our countries work to protect against the next terrorist attack, our immigration policies should NOT continue to fill those pools with large flows of new foreign citizens.
There is no need to single out people by religion, ethnicity or country of origin. The problem can be greatly addressed by dramatic reductions in nearly all forms of immigration.
We don't need the tragedies of Brussels, Paris and San Bernardino to justify adopting all the immigration-reduction goals of NumbersUSA (recommended by a bi-partisan federal commission for economic reasons).
But Brussels, Paris and San Bernardino should provide even more urgency to break the gridlock in Congress.
The aim should be to halt all immigration possible. Add as little as possible to the enabling pools. This will ensure that the number of immigrants arriving is small enough that all can truly be screened for security. In addition, the categories allowed to continue will be of immigrants most likely to arrive with the best chance of rapid assimilation.
Our full set of recommendations are found at: https://www.numbersusa.com/about
And for now, a change in our long-standing goals, enact a moratorium on all refugee resettlement until Americans can be guaranteed of the safety of the program. In the meantime, the U.S. should concentrate on helping far more refugees find safe, healthy refuge in their home region.
During an era of Brussels, Paris and San Bernardino, we should restrict immigration to (a) spouses and minor children of immigrants already here, (b) marriages and adoptions by U.S. citizens, (c) workers with extraordinary skills in the national interest.
March 25, 2016
On Sunday, Christians around the world will celebrate Easter, which commemorates the resurrection of Jesus, the cornerstone of the Christian faith. That makes Easter the single holiest day on the Christian calendar.
But one pastor who specializes in teaching Christians about the Jewish roots of their faith has a bombshell for believers – they are celebrating on the wrong day.
Pastor Mark Biltz, discoverer of the blood-moons phenomenon and the author of “Blood Moons: Decoding the Imminent Heavenly Signs,” argues Christians’ abandonment of the biblical calendar has led to a strange situation in 2016, as believers will actually be celebrating Jesus rising from the dead almost a full month before the anniversary of His crucifixion.
“Why do believers celebrate the Resurrection of the Messiah before his actual death?” asked Biltz. “This is what happens when we follow the traditions of men, rather than the Bible.”
Biltz, the head of El Shaddai Ministries, argues Christians need to return to the Jewish, or biblical, calendar to properly interpret Scripture.
“The main reason for Christians to return to the biblical calendar is to understand prophetic events and to understand prophecy,” he explained. “Biblical prophecy is fulfilled according to the biblical calendar. If we want to understand what’s coming prophetically, we need to be on that calendar. How can we make the connection to what the Lord did in the past, and hope to understand what God will do in the future, when we aren’t making that initial connection?”
Biltz’s new book, “God’s Day Timer,” set for release this fall, explains how Christians have been taken off the biblical calendar and explores the catastrophic consequences of following man-made customs rather than Scripture. Easter is just one example.
As Biltz explained, in Leviticus 23:5, it says Passover should be on the 14th day of the first month. Of course, as Biltz observes, this does not mean in January, but Nisan, the first month of the biblical calendar. This year, Passover, or Nisan 14, occurs at sundown on April 22.
This year, Easter has been scheduled for March 27. This is significant, Biltz says, because he believes the Gospels clearly show Jesus died on Passover.
According to Matthew 26:17-19, the Last Supper was a Passover meal, or, as Biltz puts it, the “Last Passover Seder.” He argues this is no coincidence, but the fulfillment of God’s plan.
“Most Christians will admit Jesus had to follow the Torah to fulfill prophecy,” said Biltz. “It’s plain in the Gospel Jesus died on Passover. When you tie this in to Leviticus, you can see exactly when it was happening.”
Biltz also believes Christ instructed his followers to continue to celebrate Passover.
“The Lord said during the Last Supper, ‘Do this in memory of Me,’” he said. “Well, what He’s referring to is Passover. We should follow the biblical command. Instead, most Christians don’t do this, they simply celebrate the Resurrection. And they do that on the wrong calendar!”
Biltz argues it doesn’t make any sense for Christians to try to celebrate biblical holidays without using the biblical calendar.
“What would your spouse say if you said they were born on the Islamic holiday of Ramadan, and now you are only going to celebrate their birthday when Ramadan comes around?” asked Biltz. “They would think you are completely crazy. This is the same thing. Why would we want to pull one of the biblical celebrations and put it on a completely different calendar? How is that honoring or obeying the Lord’s command?”
Following Biltz’s logic, the celebration of Christ’s resurrection should be held on April 24.
“If Jesus fulfilled everything to the day, they know he died on Passover,” he explained. “And we know because of Leviticus 23:5 that Passover is on the 14th day of the first biblical month. So that’s when we should celebrate it. Jesus didn’t tell us to just celebrate ‘Friday’ as a day of the week.”
Biltz said Christians should celebrate the Resurrection but take care to do it “when God said according to His calendar.”
The pastor also argued the term “Easter” is problematic, as it derives from paganism, rather than anything celebrated by the early church.
Biltz charges it was the Emperor Constantine who took the early church off this calendar to begin with. He argues it was a decision motivated by anti-Semitism and “Jew hatred.”
“Constantine didn’t want anything to do with the Jews when they were setting the calendar,” said Biltz. He quotes Emperor Constantine at the Council of Nicea in AD 325 as saying:
“When the question relative to the sacred festival of Easter arose, it was universally thought that it would be convenient that all should keep the feast on one day; it was declared to be particularly unworthy for this, the holiest of festivals, to follow the customs (the calculation) of the Jews who had soiled their hands with the most fearful of crimes, and whose minds were blinded.
“In rejecting their custom we may transmit to our descendants the legitimate mode of celebrating Easter; We ought not therefore to have anything in common with the Jew, for the Savior has shown us another way; our worship following a more legitimate and more convenient course (the order of the days of the week). And consequently in unanimously adopting this mode, we desire, dearest brethren to separate ourselves from the detestable company of the Jew. For it is truly shameful for us to hear them boast that without their direction we could not keep this feast.”
Biltz says it is time for believers to reject this hateful tradition and begin honoring God’s calendar. And he argues this switch in perspective will allow Christians to more fully understand their faith and God’s plan for the end times.
“At Messiah’s first coming he fulfilled the spring feast days on the biblical calendar,” said Biltz. “He died on Passover. He was buried on the Feast of Unleavened Bread. He rose on the Feast of First Fruits. And all of this was part of God’s plan, set out from the foundation of the world, because He is the same yesterday, today and forever.
“At Messiah’s Second Coming, he will fulfill the fall feast days on the biblical calendar. Again, to the day. So it is important we are on God’s calendar so we can understand that.”
God says:“On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Where do you want us to make preparations for you to eat the Passover?” He replied, “Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, ‘The Teacher says: My appointed time is near. I am going to celebrate the Passover with my disciples at your house.’” So the disciples did as Jesus had directed them and prepared the Passover…
While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.”
Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom. (Matthew 26:17-19, 26-29)
The Jerusalem Connection says: Constantine’s willful divorce of the death and resurrection of Jesus from the Jewish Passover and the Biblical calendar, has served as a tragic support of anti-Semitism. Easter, as we know it, with its emphasis on bunnies and eggs is right out of paganism’s playbook. True Believers will see beyond this charade and celebrate the goodness and Godliness of Good Friday and the glorious victory of Jesus on Resurrection Sunday – remembering it all took place on the date of the Biblical Passover.
LARGEST INSANE ASYLUM IN THE WORLD
From the L. A. Times.
Posted in hls.com March 17, 2016
1. 40% of all workers in L. A. County (L.. A. County has 10.2 million people), are working for cash; and not paying taxes. This is because they are predominantly illegal immigrants, working without a green card.
2. 95% of warrants for murder in Los Angeles , are for illegal aliens.
3. 75% of people on the most wanted list in Los Angeles , are illegal aliens.
4. Over 2/3 of all births in Los Angeles County, are to illegal alien Mexicans on Medi-Cal; whose births were paid for, by taxpayers.
5. Nearly 35% of all inmates in California detention centers, are Mexican nationals; here illegally.
6. Over 300,000 illegal aliens in Los Angeles County, are living in garages.
7. The FBI reports half of all gang members in Los Angeles, are most likely illegal aliens; from south of the border.
8. Nearly 60% of all occupants of HUD properties, are illegal.
9. 21 radio stations in L. A., are Spanish speaking.
10. In L.A. County, 5.1 million people speak English; 3.9 million, speak Spanish. (There are 10.2 million people, in L. A. County.)
(All 10 of the above facts, were published in the Los Angeles Times)
Less than 2% of illegal aliens are picking our crops, but 29% are on welfare. Over 70% of the United States ' annual population growth, (and over 90% of California , Florida , and New York ) results from immigration. 29% of inmates in federal prisons, are illegal aliens.
Our World: The Subversion of American Evangelicals
The largest Evangelical communities remain solidly supportive of Israel, and their size dwarfs that of the rising forces of replacement theology and its concomitant hatred of Israel.
Monday the Bethlehem Bible College, an Evangelical Christian college in Jesus’s hometown, opened its fourth biennial Christ at the Checkpoint conference. The conference, which is directed specifically toward US Evangelicals, will run through the week.
Today, Evangelical communities in the US number anywhere between 60 and 150 million people, depending on who is counting. They form the backbone of American support for the Jewish state. It is the support of the Evangelical community, rather than the Jewish community in the US that ensures that come hell or high water, no matter how Israel is demonized in the media and in academia, the majority of Americans continue to support Israel.
But will this support last? One of the more surprising aspects of the 2016 elections is Evangelical support for businessman Donald Trump. Trump in many ways personifies everything that people who take the Bible seriously are supposed to oppose. He owns casinos. He curses and uses profanity in his public appearances. He has donated to Planned Parenthood and forcefully supported abortions on demand.
Trump has also insisted repeatedly that he will be neutral toward Israel.
Perhaps the most extraordinary aspect of Evangelical support for Trump is that he takes these positions as he runs against primary opponents who all wear their faith on their sleeves. All of his opponents have records of standing with the Evangelicals on social and other salient issues – including support for Israel.
What are we to make of this seemingly inexplicable phenomenon? At least as far as Israel is concerned, the readiness of Evangelicals to support the most anti-Israel candidate running for the Republican presidential nomination is no surprise.
To understand why this is the case, the Christ at the Checkpoint conference taking place this week in Bethlehem is a good place to look.
According to its website, the mission of the biennial conference “is to challenge Evangelicals to take responsibility to help resolve the conflicts in Israel/ Palestine by engaging with the teaching of Jesus on the Kingdom of God.”
The problem begins with the organizers’ interpretation of those teachings. College officials, among them keynote speakers at the conference, embrace and teach replacement theology. That theology maintains that God’s covenant with the Jews ended with Christianity.
In recent years, replacement theology has extended its biblical revisionism from Jews as people reviled for their rejection of Jesus and their supersession by Christians to Israel. The Jewish state is reviled as a religiously prohibited entity whose very existence is a sin against God.
According to current replacement theology, Jesus was not a Jew. He was a Palestinian. The Jews are not a people. They have no rights to the land of Israel.
Israel, it is asserted, has no historical or theological right to exist. Rather, according to the rewritten scriptures, the Palestinians are the chosen people.
Jews are colonialist invaders who have taken the land of Israel away from their rightful, biblically sanctioned owners.
This basic view is encapsulated in the very name “Christ at the Checkpoint.”
Today a Jewish Jesus would be prohibited from entering Bethlehem. Jews are barred from entering Palestinian population centers because Palestinians have a habit of murdering them. Indeed, just last week two IDF soldiers who accidentally entered a Palestinian village north of Jerusalem escaped a lynch mob by the skin of their teeth.
On the other hand, a Palestinian Jesus can be in Bethlehem. But to leave he has to go through an Israeli checkpoint (to ensure that he isn’t a terrorist, to be sure, but whatever).
So the image evoked by the name “Christ at the Checkpoint” ignores the reality of Palestinian terrorism.
And it leaves us with an image of the repression of a Palestinian Jesus at the hands of the Jews.
The replacement theology at the heart of the conference was made explicit by Rev. Jack Sara, president of the Bethlehem Bible Conference, at the 2012 conference. In his speech Sara edited Chapter 37 of the book of Ezekiel to transform the dry bones prophecy. That prophecy, of course, is one of the most Zionist passages in the Bible. God speaks to Ezekiel and tells him that the people of Israel will be reborn. They will be gathered from the four corners of the earth, return to Israel and restore the Davidic kingdom.
Yet in Sara’s revised version, the people of Israel, the descendants of Jacob, are replaced by the Palestinians.
Sara preached, “The hand of the Lord was on me and He brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and sent me in the middle of the West Bank – Bethlehem, Jenin and Salvit and Nablus and Ramallah.
It was full of bones…. He asked me, ‘Son of Man, can these bones live? Can the Palestinian people live?’ Then He said to me ‘prophesy to these bones and same to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord.’” Sara then said, “You see, the Palestinian people were and are a lot like this valley of dry bones that is in need of the Church to come and prophesy life on them.”
Last March the Bethlehem Bible College posted a promotional video ahead of a summer Christ at the Checkpoint conference directed toward young adults.
As Tricia Miller, who works as a senior research analyst for CAMERA noted, Christ at the Checkpoint director Munther Issac billed the conference as a means to empower Palestinian Christians.
The conference website said that the conference’s aim was “to motivate Palestinian Christian youth to take an active role as followers of Christ in spreading justice and peace, through discussing the challenges of our societies from a biblical perspective.”
Yet, as Miller noted in an article in The Times of Israel, the promotional video for the conference made clear that the conference had no intention of “spreading justice and peace.”
The video interlaced footage of Palestinians walking in heavy traffic and waiting to cross into sovereign Israel with footage from Islamic State (ISIS) videos showing hostages about to be beheaded and burned alive. Israeli flags flapping in the wind were juxtaposed with the ISIS flag.
And then, apropos of nothing, the video showed the cellular structure of the H1N1 swine flu virus.
The implied message was clear. Just as Nazi propaganda depicted Jews as viruses, so the Christ at the Checkpoint video depicted Israel as the moral equivalent of ISIS and the medical equivalent of swine flu.
In 2014, David Brog published in article in Middle East Quarterly detailing the key role the Bethlehem Bible College plays in a wider campaign directed toward American Evangelicals whose goal is to undermine and eventually end their support for Israel.
Key figures in this undertaking bring American church leaders and academics to Bethlehem and feed them a diet of anti-Israel propaganda and outright lies masquerading as biblical teaching and objective assessments of reality. These American Christian leaders have taken up the cause of ending support for Israel among Evangelicals upon their return home.
Key financiers, like Mart Green, the heir of the Hobby Lobby fortune and the chairman of the board of trustees of Oral Roberts University, and financier George Soros have been instrumental in disseminating these positions to all levels of the Evangelical community in the US.
In September 2014, Senator Ted Cruz spoke before Middle Eastern Christians, who convened in Washington ostensibly to discuss the genocide of Christians in the Middle East. Cruz was booed off the stage after telling the audience, “Today Christians have no greater ally than the Jewish state.”
Cruz added, “The very same people who persecute and murder Christians right now, who crucify Christians, who behead children, are the very same people who target and murder Jews for the very same reason.”
Cruz’s statement marked the first time a major US political leader stood up to the Jew hatred of Middle Eastern Christians and pointed out its irrationality and self-defeating core.
It could have been a seminal moment in the discourse on Islamic persecution of Christians. But rather than be embraced for his willingness to speak the truth to those who reject it even in the face of genocide, Cruz was assaulted as undiplomatic by Washington Post writer Jennifer Rubin. His message was largely ignored outside of policy circles.
To be sure, the largest Evangelical communities remain solidly supportive of Israel, and their size dwarfs that of the rising forces of replacement theology and its concomitant hatred of Israel. Yet, as Brog noted, the long-term trends are discouraging.
Moreover, the readiness of Evangelical voters to support the only Republican candidate who says he will be neutral in his handling of the Palestinian conflict with Israel indicates that anti-Israel Christians may already be having a profound impact on their communities.
This trend represents a strategic threat to US-Israel relations. Those who wish to maintain those relations in the long term must fight this trend head on, beginning with this week’s Christ at the Checkpoint conference.
Rising Global Debt and the Deflation Threat
Continued after the following comments: -
“For those with a meaningful education in economics (and for others with meaningful life-experience and intellectual engagement), the explanation offered here will ‘ring true’. The Bernanke-Yellen Fed, with the insistence of U.S. political leaders and the follow-through by central banks around the world, have structured a ‘debt trap’ from which there is no ‘politically acceptable’ escape. We have been led by fools – who were enabled by foolish citizens – who are now in the U.S. tilting towards an historical election fiasco in this election cycle. (I encourage each of you to also contemplate the futility of the Bush-Obama ‘stimulus bills’, since these were ‘the other side of the coin’ of the Fed’s debt binge. Add to these the malicious and politically motivated social spending by Obama over his two terms, and you have a veritable economic and cultural ‘wrecking ball’ that has been applied in the U.S.)”
By Dean Ethridge, Texas Technical University
Rising Global Debt and the Deflation Threat
Years of deficit spending and near-zero interest rates have led to massive borrowing but little growth.
By George Melloan
March 7, 2016
Franklin D. Roosevelt’s March 1933 inaugural line “that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself” was inspiring, but wrong. There was plenty to fear, not least the deflation that then gripped the nation.
Today we’re in a new age of anxiety, with voters opting for anti-establishment outsiders like Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders. Americans are not experiencing deflation, but there are some early symptoms. More important, the potential cause is apparent.
Among symptoms, dollar prices of oil and many other commodities have slumped; the U.S. consumer-price index hardly budged in 2015. The European Central Bank and central banks in Japan, Switzerland, Denmark and Sweden are now charging commercial banks interest on their reserve deposits (negative interest rates) to try to stimulate lending.
The decline in energy prices is appropriately celebrated, but the big question is whether the Federal Reserve and other central banks can arrest a slide into a general deflationary malaise. Here is a possible reason why they can’t: Years of government “stimulus” spending are working against them.
Irving Fisher, a prominent monetary economist in the 1920s and ’30s, explained how deflation could result from an abnormal buildup of debt. A debt bubble, he wrote (Econometrica, 1933) ultimately would burst “through the alarm of either debtors or creditors or both.” Debt will be liquidated by the distress sales of assets, the contraction of bank deposits as bank loans are paid off, and the slowing down of monetary velocity (the turnover from account to account that modulates the effective supply of money).
With falling prices come plummeting profits that force employee layoffs. The resulting pessimism and loss of confidence leads to “hoarding and slowing down still more of velocity of [monetary] circulation.” The effective money supply contracts, hence deflation. In Fisher’s view, that’s why the American economy sank into Depression in the early 1930s. (Why it stayed depressed for a decade is another story.)
When global stock markets crashed in 2008, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke was determined not to repeat a mistake made in 1929. After that crash the Fed failed to create enough money to compensate for the sudden loss of bank liquidity and a deflationary contraction of the money stock. And so Mr. Bernanke in December 2008 lowered the Fed’s interest-rate target to an upper bound of a quarter of a percentage point and a lower bound of zero. There it stayed until the quarter point increase in December 2015.
Unfortunately, Congress also passed, at President Obama’s urging, a massive and highly politicized $831 billion “stimulus” bill a few months later. The spending did not lead to much if any growth, but it was followed by a string of trillion-dollar-plus deficits. Federal debt, a bit over $10 trillion in 2009, has ballooned to more than $18 trillion.
In other words, while Mr. Bernanke and Ms. Yellen were trying to prevent deflation, the federal government was engineering its cause, excessive debt. And the Fed abetted the process by purchasing trillions of dollars of government paper, aka quantitative easing.
Near-zero interest rates also have encouraged consumers and business to releverage. Cars are now financed with low or no-interest five-year loans. With the 2008 housing debacle forgotten, easier mortgage terms have made a comeback. Corporations also couldn’t let cheap money go to waste, so they have piled up debts to buy back their own stock. Such “investment” produces no economic growth, but it has to be paid back nonetheless.
Amid the Great Recession, many worried that the entire economy of the U.S., or even the world, would be “deleveraged.” Instead, we have a new world-wide debt bubble. “The billions of taxpayer dollars that have been spent on bailing out the banks,” Aaran Fronda recently wrote in London’s World Finance magazine, “combined with huge amounts of quantitative easing and reducing interest rates to rock-bottom levels resulted in advanced economies holding the highest public debt-to-GDP ratios that had ever been seen.”
Global debt of all types grew by $57 trillion from 2007 to 2014 to a total of $199 trillion, the McKinsey Global Institute reported in February last year. That’s 286% of global GDP compared with 269% in 2007. The current ratio is above 300%. The big boost came from governments. The debt load, McKinsey noted, “poses new risks to financial stability and may undermine global economic growth.”
The Fed says it wants to “reflate” to the tune of 2% annual inflation—which would let the U.S. Treasury, among others, work off its debt with cheaper dollars. But the Fed isn’t getting the inflation it wants and the deflation risk persists. Its desperation can be deduced from Ms. Yellen’s suggestion that she would consider negative rates. “Helicopter money”—with the Fed bypassing the banks and somehow funneling money directly to consumer accounts—is even being discussed in the press.
Mr. Melloan is a former deputy editor of the Journal editorial page. His book “When the New Deal Came to Town” will be published by Simon & Schuster in the fall
The Scalia Seat: Let the People Speak
The legal stakes are higher than ever, and historic precedent favors waiting for a new president.
By Ted Cruz
March 6, 2016
Republicans and Democrats are deeply divided over the proper role of the Supreme Court. President Obama and Democrats favor justices who see the Constitution as a potter sees clay—something that can be molded to achieve their desired results. This has led the Supreme Court to invent rights that are nowhere in the Constitution—like the right to an abortion or to same-sex marriage—and ignore or restrict rights that even non-lawyers can’t miss—like the First and Second Amendments.
Republicans view things very differently. We believe the Constitution has a fixed meaning and a judge’s task is limited—to discover what that meaning is, not to make it up.
Justice Antonin Scalia, whose passing we mourn, was a passionate champion of this humbler view of the judicial role. It is nearly impossible to overstate the significance of his passing. If Justice Scalia is replaced by a Democratic nominee, many long-cherished rights will be jeopardized.
The court would be poised to allow the banning of movies and books criticizing political candidates like Hillary Clinton, to mandate that states permit the barbaric monstrosity known as partial-birth abortion, to force the religiously devout to provide abortion-inducing drugs, and to allow the confiscation of guns by holding that the Second Amendment doesn’t include an individual right to keep and bear arms.
In 2014 when the American people last spoke in a nationwide election, they clearly repudiated Democratic governance and elected a Republican Senate majority. Although the president has the constitutional power to nominate Justice Scalia’s replacement, no nominee can be appointed without the Senate’s “Advice and Consent.” And as Minority Leader Harry Reid himself once said, “nowhere” in the Constitution “does it say the Senate has a duty to give presidential nominees a vote.”
I believe the Senate should fulfill its constitutional duty by letting the American people be heard in selecting the next Supreme Court justice. Seldom has a Supreme Court vacancy arisen before the election in a presidential election year. Benjamin Cardozo, whom the Senate confirmed in February 1932, was the last justice confirmed to fill such a vacancy before the election. That was more than 80 years ago, and it occurred when the same party controlled both the Senate and presidency.
Rarer still has a vacancy arisen in the lame-duck final year of a presidency when the opposing party controlled the Senate. One must look back to 1888 to find a situation remotely similar to the one we face today where a Senate confirmed the nominee of a president from the opposing party before the election to fill a vacancy that arose in a presidential election year.
But even this lone example is not a suitable precedent. Unlike President Obama now, President Grover Cleveland was eligible for re-election and could have been held accountable for his choice of nominee. The 1888 example is also an outlier because on every other occasion when a vacancy arose before the vote in a presidential-election year and the Senate and presidency were not controlled by the same party—1828, 1844, 1852 and 1956—the Senate didn’t confirm a nominee before the election.
Most important, the deep disagreement that divides the political parties today over constitutional interpretation didn’t exist in the 19th century. This rift emerged in the early 20th century as American progressives began to question the Constitution’s merits. Woodrow Wilson—a Democrat and progressive leader—was the first president to have openly declared that the Constitution, with its separation of powers, was outdated. And Democrats have been subverting the Constitution ever since.
To overcome what he perceived to be the Constitution’s defects, President Wilson invoked the idea of a living constitution, which changes as society changes. “Government,” Wilson said, “is not a machine, but a living thing” and “is accountable to Darwin, not to Newton.”
That view has remained a foundational principle of the Democratic Party. In “The Audacity of Hope,” then-Sen. Obama wrote that the Constitution “is not a static but rather a living document, and must be read in the context of an ever-changing world.”
The extreme positions that the Obama administration has taken in the Supreme Court—for example, its argument in Hosanna-Tabor that the government can interfere with a church’s choice of ministers—are further evidence of President Obama’s devotion to living-constitutionalism. The president’s appointments to the Supreme Court have proven just as devoted. After all, justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan voted to invent a right to same-sex marriage.
Does anyone really believe that another Obama nominee would be different? The stakes are too high to allow President Obama, in the waning months of his final term, to make a lifetime appointment that would reshape the Supreme Court for a generation.
Do the American people want a justice who adheres to the unchanging text, history and structure of the Constitution, or do they want a justice who thinks the Constitution should evolve with the personal beliefs of unelected lawyers? Voters deserve the opportunity to speak on this subject through the next president.
That is why I will oppose any attempt by the Democrats to deny the American people their say. There should be no hearing on any nomination that President Obama makes, and if any confirmation vote is attempted, I will filibuster it. Notably, this approach was advocated by Vice President Joe Biden when he chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1992, and as recently as 2007 by the man now slated to be the next Democratic leader in the Senate, Chuck Schumer.
This Has Festered Long Enough
By Erick Erickson | February 29, 2016, 05:00am
We have arrived at the time where everyone who does not want Trump to be the GOP nominee must unite. And we may not be able to unite behind our candidate preference to do it. But for the good of the country, we must agree that we must stop Trump.
Tomorrow is the SEC Primary. In a number of states where Ted Cruz should be doing very well, he suddenly finds himself in third place behind Marco Rubio.
But in other states, Cruz has rebounded and he does have Texas. Nonetheless, in Texas, Rubio may perform well enough to take some delegates away from Cruz.
All of this is to say that no one knows who will come out with the delegate lead on Tuesday.
What I do know to be sure is that talk of a brokered convention could be ruination to our fortunes in November and bitterly divisive. What I also know is that there is such a strong anti-establishment current in the party and nation right now, a nominee from a brokered convention has the potential to be seen by even the anti-Trump base as illegitimate.
I think the time has come to stop letting egos and Trump fester. I think the candidates must now consider that whoever comes out of Tuesday with the most delegates behind Trump be the Presidential nominee and whoever is third be the uniting Vice President.
In 1980, Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush put aside their egos and attacks at a time of Soviet threats and a rising Iranian menace. If Cruz and Rubio are unable to do the same and unite in the face of an ISIS threat and a rising Russian menace, they will be men who failed to rise to the challenges of their age.
Now is the time for the partisans of both candidates to be willing to unite against Trump. We cannot wait till March 15th. That is a fool’s errand. The unity ticket must form after Tuesday in order to shake up the race and unite in concentrated fire against Trump.
For the good of the nation, not just the party, the second and third place delegate count winners after Tuesday need to agree to a unity ticket. We have waited too long, we have delayed the attacks on Trump, we cannot wait to see how March 15th turns out or wait for a brokered convention. We absolutely must unite to shift the race.
The only fair way is to use the delegate counts after Tuesday and set aside the egos and the preferences. We must stop Trump.
Liberal progressivism's assault on black America
February 24, 2016
A while back I wrote an article dealing with the Left's emasculation of black men. That article was in response to the concerted effort of leftists and fellow travelers to destroy the Miami Dolphins' football player Don Jones. Mr. Jones had dared to be politically incorrect regarding one of the Left's sacred cows, the mainstreaming of homosexuality.
In that article, I touched on the correlation between the sinister emasculation of black men, by championing homosexual behavior among them, and the Left's systematic destruction of the black family. I also coupled these tragedies with the mass destruction of black children in the womb, orchestrated by Planned Parenthood and other pro-abortion entities, and revealed a pattern of destruction that only the thoroughly duped are unable to or refuse to recognize.
I will add to those destructive mechanisms the malevolent manipulation of the education of black children in public schools. All children suffer under the destructive system, but I would venture to say blacks suffer more and may well be the primary target of the destruction.
To illustrate the point, I recently received an article from a couple of conservative friends. It is said to have been written by a white male teacher working in a predominantly black, southeastern public school. The article bolstered my perception of the progressive Left's sinister manipulation of public education in America, their goal being to produce a shallow, easily led class of "neo-slaves." Progressive masterminds are well aware that miseducation of the young guarantees their mental bondage for life.
What we are witnessing is a modern-day version of slavery. Outright denial of formal education for slaves centuries ago and a crippling, ineffective education today both yield a dependent class of dysfunctional people. The only distinction is where the shackles are placed, on the limbs or the mind.
Of necessity, the teacher who wrote the article does not identify himself, except by a likely fictitious last name (a wise safety precaution), and the blogger who posted it mentions only its source. Its length and obvious sincerity, however, belie its being a fraud or a hateful screed. It expresses the deep discouragement of a former school teacher who, while in the system, seemed genuinely determined to understand and assist his young charges. The article is a sad commentary on a system that is at best grossly uninterested in children's growth and development, and at worse, set on the deliberate creation of a permanent, politically malleable underclass.
I am inclined to agree wholeheartedly with this teacher's perceptions. I did a brief stint teaching English language arts in an inner-city school in New York state, in the late 1960s. Even then the atmosphere in the education system was beginning to deteriorate. I detected after a year that the powers-that-be in the school system had no real interest in uplifting those multi-ethnic children by providing an effective education. It was more of an assembly-line process – move them along to the next grade regardless of whether they are capable, because they will clog the system if held back.
That attitude was in stark contrast to my segregated grade school experience throughout the 1950s and early 1960s. One high school friend's explanation for why he was two years older than most of us in our graduating class, shed light on the difference. He lamented that those "darn nuns" in Catholic elementary school had held him back in the first grade for not having grasped the basics. He couldn't understand then but he certainly understood later that their goal was to make sure that he was prepared to graduate high school and gain sufficient skills to be a self-sustaining, independent adult.
My friend has since passed, but given a second chance in a school system (Catholic run) that was genuinely concerned about his education, he eventually grasped those basics. He became an honorably discharged Viet Nam veteran and a stellar, contributing member to society. Not a burden.
I don't have children and cannot speak to the experience of parents who shudder at the enormity of the power wielded by the National Education Association (NEA) and other leftist arms of that leviathan organization. But it behooves parents and others who are concerned about children trapped in inner-city schools (mostly blacks, ethnics and poor whites) to read this teacher's poignant account of his experiences, and make an effort to fight those forces aimed against the children. These are the kids who cannot be home-schooled because no one in the home is qualified to teach them, and they are not financially able to attend private schools.
Teachers like this "Mr. Jackson" need all the help they can get from fellow Americans who have a stake in the quality of future citizens and leaders of this nation. The children in today's grade schools will be the adults running the show in a few decades. If nothing changes, it's more likely they will be the under-educated masses controlled by a dictator class, maintaining power and wealth at their expense. Just something to think about.
Ted Cruz Is Very Electable.....
The immediate comments are by Dean Ethridge from TTU:
Berman, who has favored Rubio over past months, asserts that “Cruz is electable because he’s the real thing. . .” This is also the reason why the Republican Establishment is hellbent to avoid a Cruz candidacy. To this Republican schism add the irrationality of ‘open primary’ states like South Carolina, where any dedicated Democratic voter has ample incentive to vote in the Republican primary, and you have the dominant sources of Trump’s hegemony to either win the Republican primaries or sabotage another Republican candidate. Regardless, this represents another step toward the disintegration of the Republican Party. Erickson understands this, as his commentary in the second article indicates.
Ted Cruz Is Very Electable
By Steve Berman
February 16, 2016
If you read nothing but the New York Times, the Washington Post, and watched nothing but cable news, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Ted Cruz is a dangerous fringe reactionary, who could never be elected president.
I’ve previously written that Donald Trump must veer left to win the presidency. He must, and he will, when it suits him. Cruz, however, has no need to veer left. In the first place, he wouldn’t do it–it’s not in his nature.
But Cruz doesn’t need to veer left.
Let’s have a peek at election results. Cruz came in first in Iowa, and third in New Hampshire. Iowa is a very conservative state, with a large evangelical population. NH, not so much, it’s always been a populist, reactionary place (it’s always had an earthy-crunchy feel, but now it’s gaining an increasing liberal population). If Cruz were the dangerous fringe reactionary, we’d expect him to win in NH. But Trump won big.
Kasich got a good bounce from New Hampshire in South Carolina, but he’s barely cracking double-digits – he’s not electable as a conservative nor is he a threat to Cruz’s electability.
Rubio is very electable, but not at Cruz’s expense. In fact, the biggest argument for Rubio is that he’s electable. At best, the Cruz/Rubio feud is causing confusion and division among conservatives, but it will not hurt Cruz’s electability.
Cruz is electable because he’s the real thing: A genuine Constitutional Conservative who is visited nightly by Antonin Scalia’s visage at the foot of his bed, encouraging him to keep the faith. Cruz is a genuine Christian, who is recognizable by his fruit, not his talk. Donald Trump will learn this about genuine Christians–they survive attacks by people accusing them of lying because they own up to their mistakes and live their faith.
Trump’s continual tirades (Trumpertantrums) against Cruz, repeating the words “dishonest” and “lie” ad nauseum only reinforce Cruz’s electability among Christians, who know the truth from another source.
That kind of straightforward, consistent honesty wins elections. Reagan had it, along with another quality Cruz possesses: Civility. Call it politeness, cordiality, gentility, or amenity. In debate, Cruz throws arguments hard and fast, but never insults his fellow candidates. He reacts to attacks on his family and character with laughter.
Cruz is running a solid second place, slightly ahead of or tied with Rubio in South Carolina. Cruz plus Rubio beats Trump there. Take Kasich and Bush out of the race, and either Cruz or Rubio beat Trump.
Trump is maxed out–he can’t get more popular. There’s no possible bounce he could get from New Hampshire (he got it–zero) to make his polling go up. There’s only one way for Trump to go and it’s down, unless and until he veers left. (He will.)
Cruz can only get more popular. In a general election against Hillary, he will devastate her, despite the fear and venom of the left’s mouthpieces. Against Sanders, it wouldn’t even be close.
I like Rubio, and I like Cruz. To choose Rubio over Cruz because he’s “the electable one” is a false choice. Either of them is electable. But the biggest favor Republicans can do for themselves right now is to choose one, because there can be only one.
Makes You Wonder if the Thousand Years is Now Expired
By Erick Erickson
February 16, 2016
I keep thinking about the insanity of Donald Trump’s race.
We have no more hypotheticals about a Supreme Court in the balance, it actually is. We have a terrorist organization burning people alive overseas. The Chinese have been emboldened to harass their neighbors while the Russian lick their lips at Eastern Europe. Europeans have moved toward a secularism unprepared to cope with a tide of growing and increasingly radicalized Islam.
At home, we have millions of Americans on the sidelines of employment while the press and President hail the amazing economy we now have. Republicans are more angry at conservatives for daring to fight than at Obama for daring to beat them.
So a sizable number of Republicans have decided to choose a Democrat who will say or do anything to get their vote and contradict himself within the structure of a single sentence. But the people do not care.
The GOP’s chickens are coming home to roost. They promised to oppose amnesty, then worked with Obama to do it. Having failed to get it through the House, the GOP turned to unelected black robed masters to stop Obama instead of actually fighting his executive order.
Then Jeb Bush entered the scene, locked up major donor money, and prepared for a coronation with major Republicans in Washington nodding approvingly.
People lost their minds and the seriousness of the situation has not returned them to their right mind. This whole craziness brings home Ephesians 6:12, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.”
There’s more than something in the water. Scalia is dead. The nation hangs in the brink. And many an American is ready to jump off a cliff led by the Pied Piper of Fifth Avenue.
For many of us, we can only sit back, warn of what is coming, and watch the trains collide. It continues to amaze me. Maybe the thousand years has expired.
WHAT ALL AMERICANS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT HILLARY CLINTON’S ALLEGED SAP COMPROMISE--MAJ ED COET, USA (RET)
[COURTESY: CAPT Les Horn, USN (Ret)]
My name is Ed Coet. I am a retired US Army Intelligence Officer. In my last job in the army I was the Chief of the Human Intelligence Branch for the US European Command in Stuttgart, Germany. In that capacity I was also the Designated Program Manager for a Special Access Program (SAP) like the SAP that Hillary Clinton is alleged to have compromised in the most recent State Department Inspector General report to congress and which has been widely reported in the news. Here is what I personally know about SAP’s and what I can attest to in an unclassified forum:
1. The names of each SAP are themselves classified Top Secret because the information within the SAP are far and above Top Secret.
2. SAP’s are so sensitive that even people who have security clearances giving them access to Top Secret Sensitive Compartment Information (TS SCI), an enormously high security clearance level, cannot have accesses to a SAP’s unless they receive a special indoctrination into the SAP based on an operational “must know” that exceeds all other “need to know” standards.
3. Being “read on” for a SAP is far more then acknowledging in writing that you have been briefed on the SAP. It is an in-depth “indoctrination” into the given SAP, and each SAP is itself compartmented separately from other SAPS. Having access to one SAP does not give you access to another SAP, and in fact rarely does. Only a tiny handful of people have knowledge of all SAP’s. SAP’s are the most stringently compartmented and protected information in the entire US government.
4. Unlike Top Secret SCI which is maintained in highly secure Sensitive Compartmented Information Facilitates (SCIF’s) managed by specially trained Special Security Officers (SSO’s) at various levels of command, every single SAP is managed by an individually designated Program Manager for each individual SAP covering an entire theater of operations. In other words, SAP Program Managers are far fewer in number than there is SSO’s. SSO’s are not cleared to even know about SAP’s or to maintain information about them in their already enormously secure SCIF’s. How SAP’s are secured cannot be discussed because of the sensitive beyond Top Secret nature in which it is done.
5. Unlike individuals with the highest Top Secret SCI access security clearances, who must undergo a special background information with periodic “bring-up” background investigation, those tiny few who have access to SAP’s must also endure periodic polygraph tests in addition to the most comprehensive of special background investigations. I used to have to schedule four-star generals and admirals to be polygraphed in order for them to maintain their access to my SAP. Many generals and admirals who obviously have the highest security clearances still did not rate being indoctrinated into my SAP. In fact, they didn’t even know the SAP existed.
6. Compromise of a SAP is the single most dangerous security violation that can ever happen to the USA. Even the enormously damaging revelations of the Edward Snowden’s TOP Secret SCI security compromise does not reach the level of a SAP compromise.
7. To put SAP information in to an unsecured server like Hillary Clinton’s unsecured server is a class one felony that could, in some cases, result in life in prison. That is because such a compromise is so dangerous that it could and likely will result in the death of people protected by and within the scope of the SAP.
As a former SAP Program Manager I believe it is inconceivable that if it is verified that Hillary Clinton’s server actually had SAP information on it that she could possibly escape indictment and criminal prosecution. As hard as it is to imagine, that would even be worse than electing to not prosecute a mass murdering serial killer because even they could not inflict as much damage on our country as the compromise of a SAP. Compromise of a SAP not only could -- but without doubt would -- cause serious damage to our national security.
If it is true that Hillary Clinton had SAP information on her unsecured server, whether it was marked or not, you can be sure that the FBI will strongly recommend that charges be brought against Hillary Clinton and continue in an exhaustive investigation to trace back to every single person that had even the tiniest role in this unbelievable security compromise.
If the Attorney General, through “proprietorial discretion,” elected not to prosecute this crime, I believe congress would have no alternative but to impeach her, and the FBI would then have no choice but to conduct a criminal investigation of her for a deliberate cover up –- so grave is this security violation.
If President Obama were to pardon Hillary Clinton for a compromise of this magnitude he would render himself in the historical record as an “enemy of the state,” and could himself face criminal prosecution –- so grave is such a security compromise. Nobody, not even the POTUS could get away with something like this in our system of government. If anyone could escape persecution for compromising a SAP, we are in deep trouble as a nation. No president who loves this country and is true to his oath would ever allow anyone, not even his or her closest and most loved relative, to get away with a SAP compromise. It is simply unimaginable that this could ever happen.
If the ongoing investigation finds that Hillary Clinton compromised a SAP, then we all should know with certainty, regardless of political persuasion, that she is entirely unfit to hold public office of any kind let alone President of the USA -- and ALL Americans should never tolerate it. Compromising a SAP is an absolute “disqualifier” for public office and access to our nation’s most sensitive information - period.
Major, US Army (Retired)
P.S. It is my sincere hope that each of you will share this article, to help other Americans understand how grave Hillary Clinton’s alleged SAP compromise is. We can’t allow anyone so careless with this level of information to have access to any classified information ever again for as long as she lives. This would surely render her unqualified and unfit to hold any public office let alone POTUS if this allegation proves to be true.
I never thought I’d hear conservatives vying to show who is most supportive of registering young women for the draft. But it happened in a recent GOP presidential debate.
The question was relevant because, recently, all restrictions against allowing women to be assigned to combat positions were lifted. Certain military leaders are talking about requiring women to sign up for selective service just as men do. It’s the logical next step because a 1981 court decision prohibiting drafting women was based upon their exclusion from combat.
Here’s the question ABC News debate moderator Martha Raddatz directed at Marco Rubio: “Many of you have young daughters. Senator Rubio, should young women be required to sign up for selective service in case of a national emergency.”
He prefaced his response with support for women serving in combat as long as standards are not compromised, and then continued: “I do believe that selective service should be opened up for both men and women in case a draft is ever instituted.”
Martha Raddatz turned the question to Jeb Bush, asking him, “do you believe that young women should sign up for selective service — be required to do so?”
Governor Bush answered: “I do. I do.” His answer communicated that he does not think the draft will be reinstated and there was an exchange about military readiness and morale.
And then Chris Christie jumped in mentioning he’s the father of two daughters and “there is no reason why one young woman should be discriminated against from registering for the selective service.”
It’s not about discriminating against women it’s about requiring them, making them sign up for selective service so that if we ever have a draft again, they could be drafted. Political correctness has run amok in the military, so I’m not shocked the idea of drafting women is being floated. But for mainstream politicians to accept the idea that we as a country would ever force women into military service and into harms way in combat positions is, to say the least, worrisome.
Ted Cruz wasn’t asked about drafting women that night. He told his audience at a town hall a few days later that, as his fellow candidates answered the question, he was thinking “Are you guys nuts?” He said, “the idea that we would draft our daughters to forcibly bring them into the military and put them in close combat, I think is wrong. It is immoral….”
It’s been 40 years since we had a military draft in this country. There’s currently no sign that we’ll reinstate the draft. Congress is supposed to approve or disapprove consequential changes in military policy and a discussion is beginning. California Congressman Duncan Hunter, a Marine veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, introduced the Draft America’s Daughter’s Act, not to pass it, but to start discussion so this isn’t forced on the country.
We must never ‘draft America’s daughters.’
"13 Hours" The Movie
Posted on hislightshining. Com 2-20-2016
I will apologize in advance for my anger for what you are about to read, but believe me, I'm calmer now than I was an hour ago.
I will make this short and not so sweet. I am in absolute awe of the people who do this kind of clandestine work. I know that training and experience goes a long way but I seriously doubt that I have the ability to think on my feet like some of these “operators” do.
The level of anger and hatred I now have for Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama cannot be measured. To read about what happened in Benghazi Libya and see the interviews does not give one a clear picture, but to now see how it unfolded and played out over a 13 hour period, and how we left our fellow Americans to die, how the CIA agents in the Annex begged for help and then just wanted a simple fly over from a F-15 to hopefully scare away the insurgents after being attacked multiple times and knowing that Hillary was watching it take place (Yes, there was a drone flying over the complex the whole time and sending back a video feed)... Only to have Washington DC deny it, should make any American pissed off!
I can't tell you the amount of disgust from people in the theater throughout the movie, that this was allowed to happen, that Clinton and Obama lied to the faces of these families and then lied to the American people..... Over and over again, you felt the anger and frustration! How Hillary Clinton is not behind bars right now proves how broken Washington DC has become. But to see her lying, smiling face on the campaign trail, knowing that she and or Obama played a role in the murders of these Americans, only proves how arrogant these two are and how they have no soul. The denial for help either came from the State Department or the White House and why we still do not have that answer is not acceptable!
The movie is intense and is non stop from beginning to end and it’s as good as they said it is, maybe better. And... it's heartbreaking. After seeing this film, I have no idea why anyone would want to serve in our military under this administration or under any Liberal. They are corrupt and they are evil. They have the blood of these men and so many others on their filthy hands. There is a special place in hell for Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton and trust me, they are going there! I have no idea how anyone could watch this movie and then vote for the party of despicable trash who created the situation, left Americans to die, and then told the public pathetic lies to cover their treasonous asses is beyond redemption. God help the next person I run into who has a Hillary Sticker on their car!
This isn’t a political film. And thank God for that. In truth it doesn’t need to be. The reality of the lack of security, the repeated calls for help that went unanswered are what they are.
13 Hours works because it isn’t a political film. It is a movie about bravery in the face of grim odds. It is a movie about the type of men who run toward the firefight, toward the bullets, even when they are outnumbered. Even when they are ordered to stand down.
It is film about service, honor, patriotism and unfettered bravery. To know that there are men like these who serve this nation fills me with so much gratitude and awe. And to see their experience in those 13 hours in Benghazi come alive on the screen left me utterly speechless and overwhelmed. Don’t wait for it to come out on DVD. Go see it in the theater. Believe me. I’m going to see it again. Few movies are worth the outrageous ticket price anymore. But 13 Hours is. It’s worth far more. It’s priceless.
The movie is excellent, exhausting and heartbreaking but it also makes you appreciate our military even more, especially those who go to work for our intelligence agencies in these hell holes and risk their lives while sacrificing their personal lives, hoping to keep us safe. It isn’t every year that something good comes out of Hollywood. So don’t miss this movie and make sure if you have a heart condition, to bring your meds. I don't think I had high blood pressure before I saw this, but I sure have it now!
Hillary Clinton Faces Possible Espionage Charges
Hillary Clinton's nightmare is not the sudden resurgence of Bernie Sanders. It is the fidelity to the rule of law of the FBI.
The recent revelations of the receipt by Clinton of a Special Access Program email, as well as cut and pasted summaries of state secrets on her server and on her BlackBerry nearly guarantee that the FBI will recommend that the Department of Justice convene a grand jury and seek her indictment for espionage.
Here is the backstory.
It seems that every week, more information comes to light about Clinton's grave legal woes. Her worries are in two broad categories: One is her well-documented failure to safeguard state secrets and the other is her probable use of her position as secretary of state to advance financially her husband's charitable foundation.
The FBI is currently and aggressively investigating both. What I will describe below is in the state secrets category. It is apparently not new to the FBI, but it is new to the public.
Among the data that the FBI either found on the Clinton server or acquired from the State Department via its responses to Freedom of Information Act requests is a top-secret email that has been denominated Special Access Program. Top secret is the highest category of state secrets (the other categories are confidential and secret), and of the sub-parts of top secret, SAP is the most sensitive.
SAP is clothed in such secrecy that it cannot be received or opened accidentally. Clinton, who ensured all of her governmental emails came to her through her husband's server, a nonsecure nongovernmental venue, could only have received or viewed it from that server after inputting certain codes. Those codes change at unscheduled times, such that she would need to inquire of them before inputting them.
The presence of the SAP-denominated email on her husband's server, whether opened or not, shows a criminal indifference to her lawful obligation to maintain safely all state secrets entrusted to her care. Yet, Clinton has suggested that she is hopelessly digitally inept and may not have known what she was doing. This constitutes an attempted plausible deniability to the charge of failing to safeguard state secrets.
But in this sensitive area of the law, plausible deniability is not an available defense; no judge would permit the assertion of it in legal filings or in a courtroom, and no lawyer would permit a client to make the assertion.
This is so for two reasons. First, failure to safeguard state secrets is a crime for which the government need not prove intent. The failure can be done negligently. Thus, plausible deniability is actually an admission of negligence and, hence in this case, an admission of guilt, not a denial.
Second, Clinton signed an oath under penalty of perjury on Jan. 22, 2009, her first full day as secretary of state. In that oath, she acknowledged that she had received a full FBI briefing on the lawfully required care and keeping of state secrets. Her briefing and her oath specified that the obligation to safeguard state secrets is absolute — it cannot be avoided or evaded by forgetfulness or any other form of negligence, and that negligence can bring prosecution.
What type of data is typically protected by the SAP denomination? The most sensitive under the sun, such as the names of moles (spies working for more than one government) and their American handlers, the existence of black ops (illegal programs that the U.S. government carries out, of which it will deny knowledge if exposed), codes needed to access state secrets and ongoing intelligence gathering projects.
The crime here occurs when SAPs are exposed by residing in a non-secure venue; it does not matter for prosecution purposes whether they fell into the wrong hands.
Clinton's persistent mocking of the seriousness of all this is the moral equivalent of taunting alligators before crossing a stream. SAPs are so sensitive that most of the FBI agents who are investigating Clinton lack the security clearances needed to view the SAP found among her emails. Most FBI agents have never seen a SAP.
Shortly after the presence of the SAP-denominated email was made known, the State Department released another email Clinton failed to erase wherein she instructed her subordinates to take state secrets from a secure venue, to cut and paste and summarize them, and send them to her on her non-secure venue.
Such an endeavor, if carried out, is a felony, masking and then not safeguarding state secrets. Such a command to subordinates can only come from a criminal mind.
Equally as telling is a little-known 2013 speech that recently surfaced given by one of Clinton's former subordinates. The aide revealed that Clinton and her staff regularly engaged in digital conversations about state secrets on their BlackBerrys. This is not criminal if the BlackBerrys were government-issued and secured. Clinton's was neither. It was purchased at her instructions off the shelf by one of her staff.
Can anyone doubt that Clinton has failed to safeguard state secrets? If her name were Hillary Rodham instead of Hillary Rodham Clinton, she'd have been indicted months ago. What remains of the rule of law in America? The FBI will soon tell us.
With two days to the South Carolina Republican primary and six remaining Republican contenders, we still have plenty of fireworks going off in the 2016 race. On Wednesday night, competing town halls on MSNBC and CNN allowed viewers to hear from the candidates once more before they vote on Saturday.
Here’s just a glimpse into the status of each candidate’s campaign. Who’s topping the polls? Who’s targeting who? You may be surprised by some of today’s matchups.
Donald Trump: Trump’s newest foe on the campaign trail is not one of his Republican rivals, but the pope. During an in-flight interview, Pope Francis suggested that Trump’s immigration policy proved he was “not Christian.” Trump called the comment “disgraceful.” Before his feud with Francis, Trump fielded questions from “Morning Joe’s” Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski at a town hall event in Charleston, S.C.
Ted Cruz: Cruz continued to defend his campaign’s use of an ad that targeted Trump for praising Planned Parenthood. He said he “laughed out loud” when he learned the businessman had plans to sue him. The Texas senator is making progress again among evangelicals after gaining the support of 300 South Carolina pastors and faith leaders and he launched a new ad, entitled “Stop,” in which he pledged to end Washington cronyism.
Marco Rubio: South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley followed up her endorsement of Rubio by joining him on the campaign trail Wednesday. In a short speech to his supporters, she explained why she’s voting for him. Rubio, she said, will “have the backs” of our military and will end burdensome federal mandates like Obamacare. She also liked that the senator was “all about term limits” in D.C. Rubio joined his fellow competitors for a CNN town hall Wednesday night, where he shared a few personal stories about the adversity he faced growing up as a Cuban-American. Meanwhile, Rubio surrogate Rep. Trey Gowdy is demanding Cruz apologize for spreading lies about him.
Jeb Bush: More and more pundits are predicting South Carolina may be the end of the road for the former Florida governor. Bush admitted he was “disappointed” Nikki Haley chose to endorse Rubio over him. With a sky high approval rating in South Carolina, some consider her support crucial. Bush is not expected to finish strong in the Palmetto State and his early focus on Nevada did not pay off. He is polling at only one percent.
John Kasich: Kasich had a tense appearance on the “Late Show With Stephen Colbert” Wednesday night. The Ohio governor sparred with the late night host over the vacant Supreme Court seat. He also slammed the GOP debates as the “dumbest thing going” and repeated his pledge to run a positive campaign.
Ben Carson: At Wednesday’s CNN town hall, the retired neurosurgeon also offered his opinion on the open Supreme Court seat. He said he would “take the opportunity to nominate someone” should he be elected. He also defended his presidential chops after a voter asked how he can be commander in chief with so little foreign policy experience. It’s not just the political class who can lead, he said. "What we really need are people who know how to solve problems – not people who know how to talk."
Standings: The newest South Carolina PPP survey has Trump in front with 35 percent, Cruz and Rubio with 18 percent, Kasich with 10 percent and Bush and Carson with 7 percent. In Nevada, Trump is in front with 45 percent.
Hillary and Bernie are neck-and-neck in Nevada. Clinton, 48, Sanders, 47.
The Muslim Man’s Sexual “Rights” Over Non-Muslim Women
In word and deed, in Islamic and non-Islamic nations, Muslim men appear to think that non-Muslim women—impure “infidels”—exist solely to gratify their sexual urges.
First, consider the beliefs and actions of those committed to waging jihad for the cause of Allah, such as the Islamic State:
In the moments before he raped the 12-year-old [non-Muslim] girl, the Islamic State fighter took the time to explain that what he was about to do was not a sin. Because the preteen girl practiced a religion other than Islam, the Quran not only gave him the right to rape her — it condoned and encouraged it, he insisted. He bound her hands and gagged her. Then he knelt beside the bed and prostrated himself in prayer before getting on top of her. When it was over, he knelt to pray again, bookending the rape with acts of religious devotion. “I kept telling him it hurts — please stop,” said the girl, whose body is so small an adult could circle her waist with two hands. “He told me that according to Islam he is allowed to rape an unbeliever. He said that by raping me, he is drawing closer to” Allah.
Consider recent events in Pakistan: three Christian girls walking home after a hard day’s work were accosted by four “rich and drunk” Muslims—hardly ISIS candidates—in a car. They “misbehaved,” yelled “suggestive and lewd comments,” and harassed the girls to get in their car for “a ride and some fun.” When the girls declined the “invitation,” adding that they were “devout Christians and did not practice sex outside of marriage,” the men became enraged and chased the girls, yelling, “How dare you run away from us, Christian girls are only meant for one thing: the pleasure of Muslim men.” They drove their car into the three girls, killing one and severely injuring the other two.
Or consider the words of human rights activists speaking about another Muslim man’s rape of a 9-year-old Christian girl: “Such incidents occur frequently. Christian girls are considered goods to be damaged at leisure. Abusing them is a right. According to the community’s mentality it is not even a crime. Muslims regard them as spoils of war.”
Once relegated to third world countries like Pakistan and ISIS-controlled areas, the subhuman treatment and sexual abuse of “infidel” women is becoming a common fixture in the West.
Thus recently in Germany, a group of Muslim “refugees” stalked a 25-year-old woman at night, hurled “filthy” insults and taunted her for sex. One told her that “German women are there for sex,” before reaching into her blouse and trousers and groping her.
These recent stories from Germany and Pakistan are identical—Muslim men harassing non-Muslim women on the assumption that it’s their Islamic right and privilege—except for one difference: the German “infidel” escaped with her life, whereas the Pakistani “infidel” was murdered for refusing to gratify the sexual desires of her Islamic accosters. As Islam’s presence continues to grow in Europe, this difference will quickly fade.
Already there are other, more subtle similarities between “third world” Pakistan and “first world” Germany. In the report about the manslaughter of the three Christian girls in Pakistan, we find that “Other girls in the local area are now too scared to travel at night and are being accompanied by the men in their families.” In Germany, “The latest reports from Dortmund [where the “German-women-are-there-for-sex” anecdote transpired] paint a terrifying picture of a city where it is now unsafe for women to go out at night for fear of being attacked and raped by refugees.”
Indeed, less than a month earlier, on New Year’s Eve, 1,000 Muslim migrants, also apparently thinking that non-Muslim women exist for one thing, went on a raping spree in Cologne and elsewhere, leaving hundreds of “infidel” women violated, beaten, and traumatized—the same way “infidel” women living in Muslim-majority nations often feel.
Of course, well before the migrant crisis, Europe had and ignored ample lessons concerning what happens when Muslim populations grow. In Britain alone, where a large Muslim minority has long existed, countless British girls in various regions have been sexually abused and gang raped by Muslims who apparently deemed it their Islamic right. Said one rape victim: “The men who did this to me have no remorse. They would tell me that what they were doing was OK in their culture.” Days ago a judge told 12 Muslim men that they “took such terrible and heartless sexual advantage” of a 13-year-old British girl before sentencing them.
A Muslim imam in Britain confessed that Muslim men are taught that women are “second-class citizens, little more than chattels or possessions over whom they have absolute authority” and that the imams preach a doctrine “that denigrates all women, but treats whites [meaning non-Muslims] with particular contempt.”
Another Muslim convicted of rape in a separate case told a British court that sharing non-Muslim girls for sex “was part of Somali culture” and “a religious requirement.”
And there it is: Whether seen by “pious” Muslims as a “religious requirement”—as cited by an ISIS rapist to his 12-year-old victim—or whether seen as part of Pakistani (Asian) and Somali (African) culture—that is, Islamic culture—the subhuman treatment and sexual degradation of non-Muslim women and children by Muslims who deem it their “right” is apparently another “exoticism” the West must embrace if it wishes to keep worshipping at the altar of multiculturalism.
Reprinted with author’s permission from Raymond Ibrahim
A European’s Evaluation of the Political Impact of Justice Scalia’s Death
From The Economist: A British take on the politics of it. Methinks they give too much credit to the strategic inclinations of Trump’s supporters. They have no comment about the strategic inclinations of The Establishment. . .Dean Ethridge, TTU
In the scales: SCOTUS after Scalia
Justice Antonin Scalia, who was found dead on Saturday, aged 79, lamented the creeping politicalisation of America's Supreme Court, on which he was a fixture for three decades. Yet conservatives thrilled to his stinging critiques of Barack Obama's expansive view of executive power, and his death has kicked off a profoundly political battle. It is likely to lead to a valedictory row between the president, who says he will nominate Mr Scalia’s successor, and the Republican-controlled Senate, whose leaders have warned him not to. Happily for whoever becomes the Republicans’ presidential candidate, the prospect of Mr Obama’s choice should fire up conservative voters. It could also influence the nomination—for example by reminding Republicans that the front-runner, Donald Trump, is intellectually weak and scarcely conservative. The opposite is true of Ted Cruz. An ultra-conservative, former Supreme Court lawyer, he could gain most from Mr Scalia’s passing.
How Iran Took Obama Hostage
Obama and his political allies seek normalization with Iran. They are unconcerned with Iran’s nuclear weapons programs or its support for terrorism and they are willing to provide fig leaves for these and other threats by the Shiite terror state to the United States and to the rest of the free world.
Iran, however, is looking to escalate its conflict with the United States. Perversely, normalization is the best strategy for escalating a conflict with the United States while extracting maximum benefit from it.
Without normalization, Iran has few options for escalating its conflict with America. Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) generals are fanatics, but they know that they cannot win a major military conflict with the United States. Instead, the IRGC terror hub seeks to carry out attacks that hurt the United States, but in ways that fall short of summoning up a full American military reprisal.
Under Obama, Iran has more options than ever because the United States is now willing to tolerate what it would not have tolerated in the past. But excessive escalation would still risk a scenario in which even a pro-Iranian administration would be left with no choice but to strike back at Iran. And Iran remembers the lessons of Operation Praying Mantis all too well. It has nothing to gain by losing billions in precious military equipment while the United States demonstrates its superior firepower.
Iran’s terror attacks have traditionally depended on a degree of plausible deniability. Shiite militias backed by the IRGC, from Hezbollah to the latest kidnappers of Americans in Baghdad, do the dirty work. Iran would supply IEDs to terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan killing 500 Americans. It would provide a certain degree of training and aid to Al Qaeda, but without direct involvement in its attacks.
Iran would indirectly kill hundreds and even thousands of Americans, but with enough distance that it did not have to fear Americans bombers flying over Tehran. Under the same strategic logic, it may pass on nuclear materials to terrorists to use against the United States as long as it doesn’t fear retaliation.
Normalization, however, allows Iran to take its war against the United States to the next level.
In the deadlier phase of plausible deniability, the victims of Iranian terror have been so compromised that the affected governments themselves treasonously lead the cover-up of Iranian terror attacks.
A classic example of this, the bombing of the Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, an attack which everyone knows that Iran is responsible for, but which the local authorities were motivated to cover up because of their entanglement with Iran. Twenty years later, the cover-up led to the murder of a prosecutor who was investigating his own government’s complicity in covering up the attack.
This is what normalization accomplishes. Like the former Argentinean government, the Democrats have been compromised by their support for the Iran deal. The process began earlier when they decided to turn against the Iraq War and make outreach to the enemy into their foreign policy. Obama and other Senate Democrats refused to brand the IRGC a terrorist organization despite its role in the mass murder of American soldiers. Now they have to excuse the IRGC’s abuse of captured American sailors and any other attacks by the Shiite terror state to protect their act of collaboration in the dirty deal with Iran.
Normalization is more properly named collaboration. The collaborator is a traitor who has to excuse his treason by rationalizing the atrocities of the enemy. Iran’s Democratic Party collaborators have to explain how “nice” Iran is being by releasing American hostages. Like all collaborators, the traitors emphasize the benevolence of the enemy while overlooking the crime that benevolence is based on. They trumpet their success in getting special favors from the enemy as proof that collaboration works.
Kerry rushed to thank Iran for freeing the hostages without ever addressing the fact that taking the hostages was itself a crime. Instead of dealing with the original crime, the Democrats, like all traitors, rush to accuse opponents of being extremists who seek conflict over diplomacy. This was the same exact argument that Communist collaborators with Hitler during the era of the Soviet-Nazi pact directed at the West. It was the same argument that British anti-war activists aimed at domestic opponents of Hitler.
Democrats believe that they are engaged in a process of normalization with Iran. Senator Bernie Sanders called for Obama to “move as aggressively as we can to normalize relations with Iran”. But Iran is interested in normalization only as leverage for entangling the United States in further crises. So Iran might allow the reopening an embassy in Tehran, but only because it would give it more hostages.
While the left seeks to normalize relations with Iran, the Shiite terror state seeks to manufacture a steady stream of crises that interrupt normalization, but which it will be rewarded for resolving.
Sometimes this means literally taking hostages. But it always means taking the process of normalization hostage by creating a crisis. This crisis might be a deliberate violation of an agreement, a weapons test or even an attack. The diplomats rush for their calfskin briefcases and the latest crisis is resolved. Iran gets what it wants and leftist diplomats claim that the end of the latest crisis is proof diplomacy works.
They carefully avoid the question of why the latest crisis occurred or why there are so many of them.
This is the diplomatic version of an abusive relationship. Iran slaps around Obama, but when the cops arrive, Obama curses out the cops and yells that everything is fine. When the cops take Obama aside, he explains that it’s the hardliner IRGC side of Iran that is abusive, but that he’s in a relationship with the loving moderate side of Iran that doesn’t really mean it when it shouts “Death to America.”
It’s not just an episode of COPS. It’s also what the Democratic Party’s foreign policy looks like now.
If you think normalization with Iran is bad now, imagine an Iranian terror attack on American soil that kills 85 people and leads to a cover-up of such massive proportions that it includes the murder of a top prosecutor. It happened in Argentina. It would be foolish to imagine that it couldn’t happen here.
Ever since the nuclear deal, Iran has been escalating its provocations. The IRGC is confident enough to imprison and humiliate American sailors. How long will it take until it’s confident enough to carry out a major terrorist attack in the United States? If “normalization” continues, we may find out.
Normalization creates more opportunities for Iran to manufacture crises of every size. Every American in Iran or in territory controlled by IRGC militias, such as Baghdad, is a potential hostage. Every American vessel, civilian or military, is a potential target. But the biggest hostage is the diplomatic process.
Iran’s biggest hostage is the wishful thinking of Western traitors. No amount of human hostages could possibly give the terror state as much leverage as being able to fulfill or deny their diplomatic dreams.
As long as Democrats and Eurocrats continue to focus on the impossible objective of full normalization with a Jihadist state that literally believes they are the devil, they will ignore almost any Iranian provocation or attack as just another bump on the road to diplomatic utopia.
This is how normalization becomes collaboration. It’s how diplomacy turns into treason.
Reprinted with author’s permission from Sultan Knish Blog
As the presidential campaign season heats up, Americans are trying to get to know the many candidates in both parties and determine who would be best to lead America in 2017 and beyond. Who has the right character, vision, and detailed, substantive, serious plans for reform? Who has the wisdom, experience and sound judgment needed to lead this nation? Who is ready for the enormous and complicated challenges facing this great country?
Choosing the right leader is not an easy process, but it is vitally mportant. America is on the wrong track, going in the wrong direction. We are heading steadily — perhaps rapidly — towards implosion. We’ve murdered more than 57 million babies. We have five Justices on the Supreme Court who have decided that the Bible is wrong and they know better than God what the definition of marriage should be. We have taken on $18 trillion in debt and we’re taking on more and more debt with no end in sight. We are surrendering to Russia, Iran and ISIS. Our tax code is corruptingly complex and killing jobs and opportunity. We can’t — or won’t — control our sovereign borders. Our schools are a mess. Violence, drugs and pornography are epidemic. Sadly, the list goes on and on.
So who can get us turned around and heading in the right direction? I’ve been praying about this and studying the Scriptures for many months, asking the Lord for clarity, and here is what I have concluded.
America needs a Josiah.
A President cannot save America from all our troubles, but leadership matters. We need a leader like the one-time King of Judah whom the Bible describes as one of the most humble, strong, wise and impressive leaders of all-time. Last summer, at the Word of Life Bible camp in the Adirondack Mountains of Upstate New York, I taught a five-day series of messages titled, “Living Like Jeremiah In A Time of Coming Judgment.” It was a survey of the life and times and ministry of the ancient Hebrew prophet Jeremiah. On Day #2, I taught about the first of five kings under whom Jeremiah served. His name was Josiah and his story is one that offers great hope.
I hope you’ll take a moment and read through these notes, and read through the accounts of King Josiah in 2 Kings 22-23 and 2 Chronicles 34-35. At the end of these notes, you’ll see some of my “final thoughts” about how I believe the life and lessons of Josiah apply to our time and this presidential campaign. I hope you find this helpful. Please feel free to share with others.
JOSIAH AND THE ROAD TO REFORM AND REVIVAL
Lessons from the life of Judah’s most humble and godly king
At a time when Hebrew prophets like Jeremiah were warning of the coming judgment of the people of Jerusalem and Judah because they were refusing to read, listen to, or obey the Word of God, the Lord mercifully raised up a leader who did, in fact, love the Lord his God and loved His Word.
His name was Josiah. A godly king, Josiah passionately sought the Lord in his private life and pursued bold, sweeping reforms in his public life to get the Jewish nation turned around and headed back in the right direction.
As a result, the Lord in His sovereignty graciously chose to forestall the promised coming judgment for more than two decades. Indeed, during Josiah’s tenure in power, the Jewish people experienced one of the greatest periods of repentance, reform and revival in their ancient history.
In the end, however, when Josiah passed away, new leaders emerged and tragically they turned away from the Lord and led the people astray. Judgment came to the nation in 586 B.C. with the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple at the hands of the Babylonian army.
Are there lessons from the life of Josiah for our nation at this time? Is it possible that the Lord might graciously raise up a leader like Josiah who loves Him and His Word and will boldly pursue serious reforms to help turn our nation around and get us headed back in the right direction? Despite our many sins and failures as a nation, might the Lord be willing to forestall judgment – at least for a while – and give us a season of great reform and revival?
These are important and intriguing questions. As we seek answers, let us begin by trying to better understand Josiah, his times, his nation, and his God.
Who was Josiah?
What was the turning point in Josiah’s life?
What was the message that the Lord sent to Josiah?
What kind of reforms did Josiah make during time in power?
How did the Lord regard Josiah?
Did the Lord cancel the coming judgment because of Josiah’s faithfulness?
How long did the Lord delay the judgment of Jerusalem and Judah?
What were the godly spiritual influences in Josiah’s life that helped him turn to the Lord?
Let us bring God back into America !
GOD BLESS AMERICA !
The Middle East is currently in the midst of widespread instability, civil strife and the collapse or contraction of state authority. Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Turkey, the West Bank and Gaza Strip, Tunisia and Egypt have all experienced major instability over the last half decade. The first four of these areas have effectively ceased to exist as unitary states, and are now partitioned de facto between warring entities, organised according to ethnic, sectarian or tribal loyalty. The Palestinian territories too are divided into areas controlled by the Islamist Hamas movement in Gaza and the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority (PA) in the West Bank.
In this fractious landscape, powerful regional states are seeking to gain advantage, extend their own power, and diminish that of their rivals.
The collapse of states has in turn brought with it the decline of the national identities which supposedly underlay them, and the growth of sectarian identification as a political factor. The result is the emergence of Sunni-Shia conflict as a major overt presence in the Middle East. In Yemen, in Iraq, in Lebanon, and in a more complex way in Syria, Sunni-Shia rivalries form a central dynamic, which are also important in terms of the geo-strategic rivalries among major states competing in the Middle East.
Perhaps the single best organised and most aggressive alliance active currently in the Middle East is the bloc of states and movements gathered around the Islamic Republic of Iran. Motivated by clear strategic goals and by powerful ideological motivations, and with long experience of subversion particularly relevant to the current period of instability in the Middle East, Iran and its allies are powerful players in the regional contest.
However, the conclusion of the nuclear agreement – and with it the prospect of release of impounded funds as part of sanctions relief – has immediate implications for the related subject of Iranian regional ambitions and outreach. The precise sum likely to become rapidly available to Iran following the signing of the agreement and sanctions relief remains unclear and disputed. Estimates range from $150 billion (the sum frequently quoted by opponents of the nuclear deal) to $56 billion (the likely sum according to US Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew).
But even if one assumes the lower estimate, and combines this with additional sums likely to become available to Iran because of renewed economic ties with the outside world as an element of sanctions relief, it may be concluded that the risk of overstretch, and a consequent inability on the part of Iran to sustain its regional commitments, has effectively disappeared as a result of the signing of the JCPOA.
As a result, Iran is well placed in the current period to continue its practice of supporting proxy political-military organisations in a variety of regional locations, in pursuit of Iranian strategic goals.
I Too Have Become Disillusioned
With Mr. Obama.
By Matt Patterson (Liberal columnist and opinion writer for now defunct NewsWeek)
Years from now, historians may regard the 2008 election of Barack Obama as an inscrutable and disturbing phenomenon, the result of a baffling breed of mass hysteria akin perhaps to the witch craze of the Middle Ages. How, they will wonder, did a man so devoid of professional accomplishment beguile so many into thinking he could manage the world’s largest economy, direct the world’s most powerful military, execute the world’s most consequential job?
Imagine a future historian examining Obama’s pre-presidential life: ushered into and through the Ivy League, despite unremarkable grades and test scores along the way; a cushy non-job as a “community organizer;” a brief career as a state legislator devoid of legislative achievement (and in fact nearly devoid of his attention, so often did he vote “present”); and finally an unaccomplished single term in the United States Senate, the entirety of which was devoted to his presidential ambitions.
He left no academic legacy in academia, authored no signature legislation as a legislator. And then there is the matter of his troubling associations: the white-hating, America-loathing preacher who for decades served as Obama’s “spiritual mentor”; a real-life, actual terrorist who served as Obama’s colleague and political sponsor. It is easy to imagine a future historian looking at it all and asking: how on Earth was such a man elected president?
Not content to wait for history, the incomparable Norman Podhoretz addressed the question recently in the Wall Street Journal: To be sure, no white candidate who had close associations with an outspoken hater of America like Jeremiah Wright and an unrepentant terrorist like Bill Ayers, would have lasted a single day. But because Mr. Obama was black, and therefore entitled in the eyes of liberal Dom to have hung out with protesters against various American injustices, even if they were a bit extreme, he was given a pass. Let that sink in: Obama was given a pass – held to a lower standard – because of the color of his skin.
Podhoretz continues: And in any case, what did such ancient history matter when he was also so articulate and elegant and (as he himself had said) “non-threatening,” all of which gave him a fighting chance to become the first black president and thereby to lay the curse of racism to rest?
Podhoretz puts his finger, I think, on the animating pulse of the Obama phenomenon – affirmative action. Not in the legal sense, of course. But certainly in the motivating sentiment behind all affirmative action laws and regulations, which are designed primarily to make white people, and especially white liberals, feel good about themselves.
Unfortunately, minorities often suffer so that whites can pat themselves on the back. Liberals routinely admit minorities to schools for which they are not qualified, yet take no responsibility for the inevitable poor performance and high drop-out rates which follow. Liberals don’t care if these minority students fail; liberals aren’t around to witness the emotional devastation and deflated self-esteem resulting from the racist policy that is affirmative action. Yes, racist. Holding someone to a separate standard merely because of the color of his skin – that’s affirmative action in a nutshell, and if that isn’t racism, then nothing is.
And that is what America did to Obama. True, Obama himself was never troubled by his lack of achievements, but why would he be? As many have noted, Obama was told he was good enough for Columbia despite undistinguished grades at Occidental; he was told he was good enough for the US Senate despite a mediocre record in Illinois; he was told he was good enough to be president despite no record at all in the Senate. All his life, every step of the way, Obama was told he was good enough for the next step, in spite of ample evidence to the contrary.
What could this breed if not the sort of empty narcissism on display every time Obama speaks? In 2008, many who agreed that he lacked executive qualifications nonetheless raved about Obama’s oratory skills, intellect, and cool character. Those people – conservatives included – ought now to be deeply embarrassed.
The man thinks and speaks in the hoariest of clichés, and that’s when he has his Teleprompters in front of him; when the prompter is absent he can barely think or speak at all. Not one original idea has ever issued from his mouth – it’s all warmed-over Marxism of the kind that has failed over and over again for 100 years.(An example is his 2012 campaign speeches which are almost word for word his 2008 speeches)
And what about his character? Obama is constantly blaming anything and everything else for his troubles.Bush did it; it was bad luck; I inherited this mess. Remember, he wanted the job, campaigned for the task. It is embarrassing to see a president so willing to advertise his own powerlessness, so comfortable with his own incompetence. (The other day he actually came out and said no one could have done anything to get our economy and country back on track.) But really, what were we to expect? The man has never been responsible for anything, so how do we expect him to act responsibly?
In short: our president is a small-minded man, with neither the temperament nor the intellect to handle his job. When you understand that, and only when you understand that, will the current erosion of liberty and prosperity make sense. It could not have gone otherwise with such a man in the Oval Office
Public Misled on Climate Impacts
Global warming causes reduced extreme weather
Last Updated: October 19, 2015 11:21 am
Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore attends a session of the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, on Jan. 21, 2015. (Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images)
The public is being told by politicians, bureaucrats, and activists that global warming will cause more extreme weather. Yet both the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC) have said the exact opposite.
In 2012 the IPCC said that a relationship between global warming and wildfires, rainfall, storms, hurricanes, and other extreme weather events has not been demonstrated. In its latest assessment report (2013), IPCC scientists concluded that they had only “low confidence” that “damaging increases will occur in either drought or tropical cyclone activity” as a result of global warming.
Hoesung Lee (R), the new president of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), with French environmentalist Nicolas Hulot at Elysée Presidential Palace in Paris on Oct. 15, 2015, after a meeting with French President François Hollande. (Eric Feferberg/AFP/Getty Images)
The 2013 NIPCC report concluded the same, asserting, “In no case has a convincing relationship been established between warming over the past 100 years and increases in any of these extreme events.”
The NIPCC report “Summary for Policymakers” addressed drought as follows, “Observations from across the planet demonstrate droughts have not become more extreme or erratic in response to global warming. In most cases, the worst droughts in recorded meteorological history were much milder than droughts that occurred periodically during much colder times.”
That there is no trend toward increasing extreme weather is clearly evident in the data. The National Climate Data Center (NCDC) tracks state records for maximum and minimum temperature, precipitation, snowfall, and snow depth, and sometimes hail characteristics, for each of the 50 states, a total of 346 state records since the 1890s. The NCDC records reveal that no extreme weather state records have been set in 2015. Only one was set in 2014, one in 2013, one in 2012, four in 2011. By far the majority of state records were set well before late 20th century warming. For example, New York state’s extreme weather records are spread over the past century, with no recent increase. Here are New York’s records:
Maximum Temperature: 108 degrees F, 1926
Minimum Temperature: -52 degrees F, 1979
Maximum 24-Hour Precipitation: 13.57 inches, 2014
Maximum 24-Hour Snowfall: 49 inches, 1900
Maximum Snow Depth: 119 inches, 1943
Scientists understand that global warming leads to less, not more, extreme weather. The boundary between cold polar air and warmer tropical air marks the position of the polar front. Extreme storms with winter blizzards and heavy rain in spring and fall, including tornadoes and hailstorms, form along the front. The number and intensity of extreme weather events varies with the temperature difference across the front, a parameter referred to as the zonal index.
According to the climate models the IPCC holds dear, global warming will occur fastest in polar regions, thus reducing the zonal index and so also reducing extreme weather.
As documented in climate records—proxy indicators, written records, and the brief instrumental record—extreme weather events have always been with us. For example, British surveyor and explorer Peter Fidler’s “Red River District Report 1819″ notes, “The spring months have sometimes storms of wind and thunder even so early as March within these last years the Climate seems to be greatly changed the summer so backward with very little rain and even snow in winter much less than usual and the ground parched that all summer have entirely dried up …”
The Department of Water and Power (DWP) San Fernando Valley Generating Station in Sun Valley, Calif., on Dec. 11, 2008. In August, President Obama announced a major climate change plan aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the nation’s coal-burning power plants. (David McNew/Getty Images)
If governments truly want to help farmers and others “who live off the land,” they should be preparing for the far more dangerous threat to North American agriculture—cooling.
Contrary to official records, observational evidence from around the world indicates that we are in a period of cooling almost certainly caused by solar changes. This is expected to continue posing a serious threat to prairie agriculture. Canada, the breadbasket of much of the world, is especially at risk. Fifty percent of Manitoba’s crops cannot be grown with a 0.9 degree F overall temperature drop and much of Canadian agriculture is eliminated entirely by a 1.8 degrees of Fahrenheit cooling. It’s a trend made more threatening because governments, misled by decades of corrupted, predetermined science, plan only for warming.
Based on the false premise that there has been an increase in extreme weather caused by global warming, President Barack Obama wants to replace coal, America’s cheapest and most plentiful power source, with other more expensive fuels. It is of concern to all democratic nations when the world’s primary defender of freedom is bent on crippling itself in this way.
Instead of wasting money vainly trying to stop extreme weather from happening, governments should work to harden their societies to these inevitable events by burying electrical cables underground, and reinforcing buildings and other infrastructure. After all, Manhattan businesses that did not lose communications and power during Hurricane Sandy had their cables buried underground.
Yet, according to Climate Policy Initiative, of the almost $1 billion spent globally every day on climate finance, only about 7 percent of it goes to helping people adapt to climate change. This is the real climate crisis that should concern our leaders.
Dr. Tim Ball is an environmental consultant and former climatology professor at the University of Winnipeg, Manitoba. Tom Harris is executive director of the Ottawa, Canada-based International Climate Science Coalition. ICSC is not right wing (our participants come from across the political spectrum), is not funded by “big oil,” and there are no lobbyists or “shills” for industry of any sort. Tom Harris has never worked as a lobbyist or PR rep for any company or sector.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of Epoch Times.
Muslims Demand Texas Mayor Surrender After She Attacked Shariah Court… Here’s Her Response
Posted Oct. 27, 2015
The group of Muslims who attempted to establish the first Islamic Sharia court inside the United States in the town of Irving, Texas just received a devastating blow thanks to the town’s mayor standing strong and not backing down.
Mayor Beth Van Duyne made a public Facebook post stating that she backs the new Texas law which prohibits any kind of foreign law from being practiced in the state of Texas.
After calls, threats and toddler-like demands to apologize from the Muslims who attempted to form the Sharia tribunal along with representatives from the Council on Islamic-American Relations, a known front for the Muslim Brotherhood, the mayor never once backed down.
There were a multitude of illegal activities taking place behind the attempted formation of the Sharia court, including the fact that all four of the “voluntary” Sharia lawyers were not licensed to practice law in Texas — that’s a third degree felony.
The rules of the Sharia court had different guidelines for women and men, with typical Islamic humiliation tactics to be used against women, which is constitutionally illegal.
The Sharia court “lawyers” also conveniently failed to inform the city of Irving that they were operating a court inside of the town — again, illegal.
The mayor’s office responded to Zia Sheikh’s public hissy fit with a call for them to follow the Consitution and the American Laws for American Courts bill, which prohibits foreign law from being practiced in the state of Texas.
Their response was in typical radical Islamic fashion. “We don’t care about the bill. It’s not going to affect us in any way, shape or form. The bottom line is the foundation of this bill is anti-Islamic,” Sheikh said.
During the city vote to support the Texas bill, which passed by a 5-4 vote, members from CAIR were present, attempting to intimidate the crowd by alleging that the bill was “anti-Islamic” and used words like “bigotry” and “Islamophobia.” (H/T MadWorldNews)
The bill makes no specific reference to Islam or Sharia — it merely states that no foreign law is to be practiced in the state.
It should also be noted that one of the votes that opposed the bill was from a Muslim council member, who addressed his fellow Muslims in the room before casting his “no” vote in dramatic fashion.
We salute Mayor Van Duyne for staying strong in the face of threats and intimidation from the radical Islamic members of the Sharia court. Her efforts to stop this abomination will echo throughout the country, setting precedent for other cities and towns where Muslims attempt to establish footholds.
"What does it mean for a Christian to grow Spiritually?"
by Tom Hanson
As believers in Jesus Christ, Who is our Lord and Savior, we have been commanded by the Lord to grow in grace and knowledge. Let’s look at what He said though the Apostle Peter in 2 Pet. 3:17-18:
“You therefore, beloved, since you know this beforehand, beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked; 18 but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen”.
When we grow in the above manner we are experiencing spiritual growth and we are growing in our faith. At the moment we received Jesus Christ as our Savior, we were born from above spiritually, into God's forever family. Every newborn baby requires nourishing food in the form of its mother’s milk, or formula, for good health and growth. In the same manner, every baby Christian requires spiritual food for good spiritual health and growth. Peter also told us in 1 Pet.2:2-3:
“Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good”.
In these verses, Peter is using milk as a symbol of what is basic to the newly born Christian’s life. But, as a baby grows, its diet changes: First to very soft, strained, mashed, or pureed food; next mothers change their babies diets to also include foods solid enough to requiring some chewing.
As we think about this, let’s read what the writer of Hebrews wrote as an admonishment to the Christians of all time. Then we will see what the writer of the book of Hebrews had to say to the Jewish believers and Paul, the Apostle, had to say to the Corinthian believers about their spiritual growth, or lack thereof.
“For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food. 13 For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. 14 But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil” Heb. 5:12-14.
“And I, brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual people but as to carnal, as to babes in Christ. 2 I fed you with milk and not with solid food; for until now you were not able to receive it, and even now you are still not able; 3 for you are still carnal. For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men?” 1 Cor. 3:1-3.
The following paragraph is a quote of something I wrote in the preface of my first e-book: “Enjoying The Blessings of Grace – Obeying the Commandments of Christ”. The book came as a result of the wonderful things I had learned from God’s word in the two years after my decision to learn all I could about the grace of God.
“I shudder to think of how many believers there are in America, attending church on a regular basis, which never opens their bible seeking after knowledge of their heavenly Father, His Son, or the Holy Spirit. What spiritual knowledge they have most likely came from those who preach or teach in their church family circle. Having believed on Jesus Christ as their Savior they may never have been encouraged, taught, or compelled to grow in God’s knowledge and grace”.
Three years later I still wonder if that is the way it is in the lives of most Christians today.
There was a time in my walk of faith that I had to ask myself: Tom what kind of spiritual food diet have you been on? It happened while I was listening to a sermon by our Pastor, Craig Lacy, when I was a member of Lake Country Bible Church in Mineola, Texas. Pastor Lacy was preaching a series of messages on the Birth Blessings of Grace and I sat there soaking it up like a dry sponge, wondering: Why have I never heard about all the blessings of God’s grace given to a believer from the unsearchable riches of Christ? Here is what the apostle Paul revealed to us in Eph. 3:8-9:
“To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ”.
In his sermon, Pastor Lacy mentioned something about Lewis Sperry Chafer. So, I went home and opened up the Bible Explorer software program on my desk top and there among the free books on Bible Explorer was Lewis Sperry Chafer’s Book: Grace: An Exposition of God’s Marvelous Gift.
When I started reading Mr. Chafer’s book, I could not put it down. God opened my heart to receive the many truths revealed from God’s word by that Godly man. I read Mr. Chafer’s book three times in two weeks, being unable to put it down because of the gift blessings of grace that were capturing my heart, my spirit, my soul, my mind, and my will.
The third week after reading the book the first time, I began to put together material for a bible study that became part of a discipleship program, through which, I was taking my good friend and brother in Christ, Lonnie Stone.
Up until I became so intensely involved in discovering everything I could about God’s grace, I would have classified my spiritual growth as average. My problem had been the same as the Corinthian believers which we read about earlier. The Corinthian believers had not grown like they should have in their faith. Paul stated that he could only give them "milk" because they were not ready for solid food.
The comparison between a human baby and a spiritual baby can only be taken so far. A human baby fed and cared for by his parents, experiences growth that is natural. However, a baby Christian will only grow to the extent he or she allows the Holy Spirit to inculcate into their hearts and minds, the spiritual truths of God’s word. This is accomplished by the reading, memorizing, obeying, and applying the Word of God to his or her life. I believe it is by our faithful practice of these things the Holy Spirit is able to shape and mold our hearts, minds, souls and spirits into the image of Christ.
Spiritual growth is up to the individual believer. There are Christians who have known Jesus Christ as their personal Savior many years, but spiritually they are still babes. It isn’t that they cannot understand the deeper truths of the Word of God; they just don’t rely upon the Holy Spirit to guide them into the truths of God’s word. Read what Jesus Himself said was the Holy Spirit’s responsibility:
“However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come” John 16:13.
I have already given you a list of a Christian's dietary exercises. But let me give them to you again. They are: reading, memorizing, and applying by obeying the Word of God to your life. We all know that a physical healthy lifestyle includes exercise. And, so it is with our spiritual health as well. Let me add one more spiritual exercise to the above. It is very simple. Listen when you have opportunity to hear the word of God spoken. Take notes and during a quiet time afterwards think on those notes.
The Word of God contains all the spiritual food we will ever need! However, only the truths taught in God’s Word are to be consumed as spiritual food by believers. We are to never attempt to grow our faith on extra-biblical “truths”.
There has never been discovered in any extra-biblical revelations, one iota of truth that is necessary for salvation. The world is inundated with these so called truths of men which instead of drawing us closer to the Lord moves lost people closer to hell for having believed in them. To put it simply: It is Jesus only and only Jesus!
A careful reading of 2 Peter 1:3-11 reveals that God has given believers everything that pertains to life and Godliness through our knowledge of Him. Peter’s list of character qualities are to be developed in our beings beginning with our salvation experience and continuing on through all our days of life here on earth; with our becoming more and more like Christ each and every day.
“The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.”
FBI: Virtually No Database Exists for Syrians Entering US
'It’s a disaster of biblical proportions,' says Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, regarding the wide open opportunity for ISIS to attack the West.
Mon, October 26, 2015
Virtually no database of information exists to screen Syrian refugees coming into the United States, according to the FBI Director James Comey.
The statements were made by Comey while testifying to the House Judiciary Committee about the security risks involved in taking in Syrian refugees.
Following the Iraq war, refugees were screened against a database of fingerprints garnered from IED’s (Improvised Explosive Devices). However today, Comey said, “The only thing we can query is information that we have. So, if we have no information on someone, they’ve never crossed our radar screen, they’ve never been a ripple in the pond, there will be no record of them there and so it will be challenging.”
The FBI will base its assessment on some fingerprints and a “variety of intelligence sources that may help us understand who these people are,” Comey said, while acknowledging that, “We had a whole lot more information about Iraq because our soldiers had been there and had run into people and collected information.”
During the hearing, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) pointed out, according to the U.N., more than 43 million people worldwide are now displaced because of conflicts. Children constitute close to 41 percent of all refugees worldwide and women almost half.
However, the percentages are significantly different when it comes to the Syrian refugees. Of the close to 380,000 arrivals across the Mediterranean Sea from January through September of this year, 15%were children, 13% were women and 72% were men.
Gohmert quoted Director of National Intelligence James Clapper as saying, “This provides a prime opportunity for Islamic State groups to attack Western targets … It’s a disaster of biblical proportions.”
According to statements made by the Islamic State, Gohmert said the terrorist organization has been able to place more than 4,000 warriors among the Syrian refugees.
Concerning inadequate screening of these refugees, Comey said, “It’s a risk we are focused on and we are trying to do anything we can to mitigate.”
Pope Francis At White House: “Koran And Holy Bible Are The Same”
(Comments by hls.com web editor are enclosed in parenthesis:)
On Wednesday the Bishop Of Rome addressed 11,000 ticketed guests on the South Lawn of the White House, during which he pontificated on the dire importance of exhibiting religious tolerance. During his hour-long speech, a smiling Pope Francis was quoted telling the White House guests that the Koran, and the spiritual teachings contained therein, are just as valid as the Holy Bible, and should therefore be respected as such.
(It should not surprise anyone, who has studied the history of the Roman Catholic hierarchy, to hear any Pope confirming what informed Christians already know to be true about unbiblical positions the Holy See have taken throughout history.)
“Jesus Christ, Jehovah, Allah. These are all names employed to describe an entity that is distinctly the same across the world.
(Indisputable lie! Any god who commands his followers to slaughter Christians and Jews is not Jehovah or Jesus Christ. Allah is in fact a creation of Satan that he, Satan, uses to kill, steal and destroy, just as the Bible says that he does. John 10:10.)
“For centuries, blood has been needlessly shed because of the desire to segregate our faiths. This, however, should be the very concept which unites us as people, as nations, and as a world bound by faith. Together, we can bring about an unprecedented age of peace, all we need to achieve such a state is respect each other’s beliefs, for we are all children of God regardless of the name we choose to address him by. We can accomplish miraculous things in the world by merging our faiths, and the time for such a movement is now. No longer shall we slaughter our neighbors over differences in reference to their God.”
(The unalterable truth is that when Christians and Jews do not segregate from false faiths they end up worshipping false gods and heaping upon themselves God’s righteous judgment. And all who claim to be in a relationship with God are not all children of God. In truth, the ones who wear the unholy vestures of the papacy are the most likely to be followers of the god of this world. For, they are blinded to the truths of God’s Holy Word, and are without Christ and any hope in this world.)
The pontiff drew harsh criticism last December after photos of the 78-year-old Catholic leader was released depicting Pope Francis kissing a Koran. The Muslim Holy Book was given to Francis during a meeting with Muslim leaders after a lengthy Muslim prayer held at the Vatican.
(It should not be surprising that one who says that God, Allah, Buddha, and all other false gods are one and the same, would also equate all the holy books of the world: the Koran, the book of Mormon, the Bhagavad Gita, etc., etc., with the Holy Bible.)
St. John Paul II has courted several controversies since being elected as Pope Benedicto XVI’s replacement in 2013. Francis has gone on record to say that homosexuals are not to be judged, Proselytism is a fallacy and has endorsed the usage of contraceptive by Catholics.
(Judging the sin that God not only judges, but emphatically proclaims it to be an abomination, is not only the right thing to do, but is the biblical thing to do.)
The Vatican will meet again with Muslim leaders in late October where they plan to talk about further steps that can be taken to spread understanding and awareness of the Islamic religion.
(No doubt that they will each share their secrets on how to deal with apostates. The Muslims can share with this Pope how to slit the throats of infidels on worldwide television and win the support of all manner of heathen people while winning young people from everywhere to your worthwhile cause. The papacy can share with the Muslims how to sell out your fellow man to Nazi scum as they did the Jews and protestant sympathizers with the Jews, to the Nazi’s and Nazi wannabes in WW2.)
How Do America’s Poor Really Live? Examining the Census Poverty Report
Robert Rector / Posted on hls.com September 23, 2015
Today, the Census Bureau will release its annual poverty report. It will almost certainly report that over 40 million Americans “live in poverty.”
But what does it mean to be poor in America? To the average American, the word “poverty” suggests significant material deprivation. But the actual living conditions of those the government defines as poor differ greatly from this perception.
According to the government’s own reports, the typical American defined as poor by the Census Bureau has a car, air conditioning, and cable or satellite TV. Half of the poor have computers, 43 percent have Internet, and 40 percent have a wide-screen plasma or LCD TV.
Far from being overcrowded, poor Americans have more living space in their home than the average non-poor person in Western Europe. Some 42 percent of all poor households actually own their own homes; on average, this is a well-maintained three-bedroom house with one and a half baths, a garage, and a porch or patio.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, only 4 percent of poor children were hungry for even a single day in the prior year because the family could not afford food. By its own report, the average poor person had sufficient funds to meet all essential needs and was able to obtain medical care for his family throughout the year whenever needed.
The left likes to claim that the U.S. has far more poverty than other advanced nations. But those claims are based on comparisons that set a higher standard for escaping poverty in the U.S. than elsewhere.
When a single uniform standard is used, the U.S. is shown to have poverty rates that are very similar to other advanced nations, slightly higher or lower depending on the exact measure used.
Misperceptions about widespread U.S. poverty are, in part, driven the Census Bureau’s consistently flawed poverty measurement. The Census Bureau defines a household as poor if its “income” falls below specific thresholds. (In 2014, the poverty threshold for a family of four was $24,008.) But in counting “income,” the Census Bureau excludes nearly all welfare benefits.
Last year, government spent over one trillion dollars on means-tested anti-poverty programs, but the Census Bureau counted less than five percent of this as “income” for purposes of measuring poverty. No surprise, then, that government’s own data show that the poor actually spend $2.30 for every $1.00 of income that the Census Bureau claims they have.
It is, of course, a good thing that left-wing charges of widespread deprivation in the U.S. are wrong. But we should not judge the welfare state merely by the volume of free benefits it distributes.
When President Lyndon Johnson launched the War on Poverty, he sought to decrease welfare dependence and to increase self-sufficiency: the ability of family to support itself above poverty without the need of government handouts.
By that measure, the War on Poverty has been a huge failure. Despite $24 trillion in anti-poverty spending, self-sufficiency has not improved in 45 years.
Public assistance should aim at Johnson’s original goal: promoting self-sufficiency.
The keys to self-sufficiency are increased work and marriage.
Able-bodied recipients of welfare aid should be required to work or prepare for work as a condition of receiving assistance. Welfare programs should encourage, not penalize, marriage.
Reforming the welfare system on those principles would be good for the poor, the taxpayer, and the nation as a whole
The Nuclear Agreement with Iran: Is it a Good or a Bad Deal? (Part 1&Part 2)
Many have asked me, “Is the nuclear deal with Iran a good deal or a bad deal?” The answer depends on whose chair you’re sitting in. In this blog and the next, I will share how this deal will impact four people groups.
1).Good Deal – for the Islamic government of Iran
The Islamic government of Iran is the total winner in the negotiation. They got almost everything they wanted without giving up much. They are celebrating this victory. Yes, they consider the deal a victory because they are getting the immediate lifting of sanctions, at least a $100 billion release of funds, and the ability to sell their oil on the world market with merely a pledge to do and not do certain things in the future—a pledge that could easily prove to be just empty words.
How did this happen?
President Obama and John Kerry negotiated from a weak position. You know, to be a good negotiator, you should show your opponent that you are ready and willing to walk away from the negotiation table. The U.S. delegation showed that they desperately needed this deal, didn’t have a plan B, and couldn’t walk away from it. That position caused them to have a weaker hand in the negotiation game. The American delegates wanted a deal at any cost. The Iranian delegates knew this and took full advantage. As a result, U.S. delegates had to agree to a mediocre deal that will not stop Iran from making the atom bomb. At best (that is if Iran does not cheat), it will only slow down its development.
To justify this mediocre deal, President Obama has repeatedly stated that America’s two choices were either this deal or war—ignoring a third option of continued sanctions, which looked like they were working.
For the Iranian government, this deal throws them a lifeline. It injects fresh life and money that they needed desperately. They limped to the negotiation table, took the offered head chair, and received the winning lottery ticket—a windfall of $100 billion in cash. Before, they were in trouble existentially; now they have exactly what they need to maintain power for at least the next 15 years.
As for their required responsibilities, they paid for their lottery windfall with “credit”—a pledge to behave. Iran has broken UN agreements in past years, building enrichment facilities in the desert. Nothing will stop them from doing the same thing again, this time under their cities.
How will this money help the Iranian government?
The Islamic government of Iran will use this money to oppress its people, strengthen its military and its defense system, advance its goals around the globe (such as Yemen, Lebanon, Bahrain, Syria, and Palestine), develop new nuclear facilities (this time in cities where they cannot be detected), and buy the nuclear technology it needs in the black market—hence speeding up its goal to develop a nuclear bomb.
2). Bad Deal – for the US government and its people
Even if the Iranian government follows through with its pledges, does not cheat, and does not develop nuclear bomb, this deal does not solve the problem of Iranian’s threat to the peace in the world, and specifically to U.S. and Israel. It only delays it. So President Obama will not have to face Nuclear Iran, but his successors will.
The supreme leader, Khamenei, has declared with very clear words that “there would be no change in the country’s hostile relations with the US or its anti-Israel approach in regional policies, regardless of the fate of the breakthrough nuclear deal with world powers.” We have to understand that in the Iranian government’s organized rallies, when they chant “Death to America, Death to Israel,” they are not just badmouthing the United States and Israel; rather, they are declaring their plans and intentions. If the Iranian government had the power to do so, it would bring death to the U.S. and Israel even this afternoon.
I believe in the next few months and years, the billions of dollars that are given to the Iranian government will come back and bite the U.S. around the world. The U.S. government and its people will pay for it. Iran will continue to oppose U.S. policies in the Middle East with a greater capacity. The fading presence and influence of the United States in the Middle East will almost vanish all together. Even worse, unfortunately, we will
see that the Iranian government will finance increased terrorist attacks against U.S. establishments and its citizens around the world and even inside the United States. With this money, they will try literally to bring “Death to America.”
In my last post, I wrote about how this nuclear deal will negatively impact the U.S. government and its citizens, and also how it will benefit the Islamic government of Iran. Today, we’ll look at how this deal will impact the people of Iran and especially how it will affect the spiritual revival that is going on in Iran.
3) Bad Deal – for the people of Iran (physically)
The people of Iran—and specially the younger generation—have been celebrating this nuclear deal by dancing in the streets. The reason for their celebration, however, is totally different from why Iran’s government celebrates. The Islamic government of Iran rejoices because they were thrown a lifeline. It now has the resources to extend its existence and power and to pursue its goals nationally and internationally.
On the other hand, the people of Iran have been praising this deal because:
The people of Iran are happy because of these two hopes. But I believe they will soon be very disappointed because:
4) Good Deal – for the people of Iran (spiritually)
Over the last few years, Iran’s government has totally destroyed its political opposition. At the moment no political movement or leader is a threat. The only situation that alarms the Iranian government is the growth of Christianity. It is the only group out of their control. That is the reason that the persecution of Christians has increased drastically in the last two years.
I believe as the number of Christians and the house churches grows, Iran’s government will increase its persecution even more. It will allocate more money and personnel to stop this transformation of its people. As a result, more Christians will be arrested and jailed. Terrorist acts against Iranian Christians outside the United States will start. (Please pray for us as once again we are receiving serious threats.)
But this new wave of persecution will strengthen the church in Iran. First, the disappointment, hopelessness, and disillusionment of people in Iran will increase. This will make millions more Iranian Muslims open to the message of the Gospel. Second, the persecution of Christians will strengthen and purify the church. Since the rise of persecution two years ago, we have seen the rise of a generation of young leaders (under 25) who are not afraid of the government—not even afraid of dying for their faith in Jesus. We will see more Christians rise up with that type of deep relationship with the Lord and commitment to serve Him.
In spiritual terms, then, the nuclear agreement will become, with much heartache, a good deal for the Iranian people.
Please pray for us at Iran Alive as the Lord has graciously positioned us to have a major impact in Iran. Over the last 14 years, by His Grace, we have established a heart connection with millions of Iranians inside Iran, have been instrumental in bringing tens of thousands of Iranian Muslims to Christ, and had a major part in establishing hundreds of house churches in tens of cities in Iran.
We are now starting new underground house church networks. The government of Iran knows that we have such plans and understandably is not happy about it. We are already getting a new wave of threats. We need your prayer for protection. We also need your support so that we will not shrink back in ministry but will take full advantage of this opening of heaven in Iran to establish a strong church that will not be wiped out but be strengthened by persecution.
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INTERESTING LIST OF OBSERVATIONS
(A veteran in talk radio, Mike Gallagher is the 8th most recognized talk radio personality in the country (The Benchmark Company), is heard by over 2.25 million listeners weekly).
Written by Mike Gallagher, an American radio host and conservative political commentator. He is the host of The Mike Gallagher Show. Many listeners have asked about the, "Obama: It Was You," essay that someone sent me. Here it is:
This is why you didn't go to France to show solidarity against the Muslim terrorists:
The above provides the basis for virtually everything Obama does. If you are a faithful, patriot I pray that you will share this and I pray that it will be read far and wide.
How bad is the baby organ trafficking story for Planned Parenthood? So bad that the nation’s largest abortion provider has hired a pricey PR firm to bully media outlets into not covering the scandal. According to Politico, Planned Parenthood hired Democratic megafirm SKDKnickerbocker to handle its public relations effort surrounding the widening organ trafficking scandal. In a series of undercover videos released by the Center for Medical Progress, multiple top Planned Parenthood executives are captured haggling over the prices of aborted baby body parts and discussing ways to maximize money earned through the harvesting and sale of human organs. Unsurprisingly, preventing coverage of the videos is apparently key to Planned Parenthood’s survival strategy: "The group circulated a memo to reporters and producers late Monday that discouraged them from airing the undercover videos, arguing that they were obtained under false identification and violated patient privacy."
GOP senators unveiled a bill Tuesday evening prohibiting federal aid to Planned Parenthood and directing that the money instead be directed to "other eligible entities to provide women's health care services." Aides said an initial vote on the measure, sponsored by Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, was likely early next week. The bill cites state and local health departments, federally backed community health centers and other providers of health services to women who might get the money. Republicans were hoping that might encourage Democrats to pull funds away from Planned Parenthood, which even some abortion-rights Democrats have avoided defending since the videos were released. Citing the "horrendous videos," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., a co-sponsor, said, "This legislation would ensure taxpayer dollars for women's health are actually spent on women's health — not a scandal-plagued political lobbying giant."
So the legislation would not cut one cent from women's health funding. It would redirect taxpayer dollars away from what McConnell aptly terms "a scandal-plagued political lobbying giant." Senate Democrats are predictably lining up to oppose the bill, led by the contemptible Harry Reid, who has cast himself as "pro-life" in the past:
"Good luck," Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said of the uphill Republican drive to garner the 60 of 100 Senate votes they will need to cut off Planned Parenthood's money. "We're dealing with the health of American women, and they're dealing with some right-wing crazy."
The following article is a must read for all conscientious Christian voters. I have underlined serious concerns I have had about a lot of our Republican Congress people and why they have not done anything about some of the crooked, lawless, impeachable shenanigans and crimes he has committed: Tom Hanson
Why Obama and Hillary Must Stop Donald Trump at All Costs
By Wayne Allyn Root
Someone is getting very nervous. Obama. Valerie Jarrett. Eric Holder. Hillary Clinton. Jon Corzine…to name just a few. And I know why.
I wrote a book entitled, “The Murder of the Middle Class” about the unholy conspiracy between big government, big business and big media. They all benefit by the billions from this partnership and it’s in all of their interests to protect one another. It’s one for all, and all for one.
It’s a heck of a filthy relationship that makes everyone filthy rich. Everyone except the American people. We get ripped off. We’re the patsies.
But for once, the powerful socialist cabal and the corrupt crony capitalists are scared. I’ve never seen them this outraged…this vicious…this motivated…this coordinated. NEVER in all my years in politics, have I seen anything like the way the mad dogs of hell have been unleashed on Donald Trump.
When white extremist David Dukes ran for Governor of Louisiana even he wasn’t treated with this kind of outrage, vitriol and disrespect. When a known fraud, scam artist and tax cheat like Al Sharpton ran for President, I never saw anything remotely close to this. The over-the-top reaction to Trump by politicians of both parties, the media and the biggest corporations of America has been so swift and insanely angry that it suggests they are all threatened and frightened like never before.
Why? Because David Duke was never going to win. Al Sharpton was never going to win. Ron Paul was never going to win. Ross Perot was never going to win as a third party candidate. None of those candidates had the billion dollars it takes to win the presidency. But Donald Trump can self fund that amount tomorrow…and still have another billion left over to pour into the last two week stretch run before election day.
No matter how much they say to the contrary, the media, business and political elite understand that Donald Trump is no joke and could actually win and upset their nice cozy apple cart.
It’s no coincidence that everyone has gotten together to destroy Donald. No this is a coordinated conspiracy led by President Barack Obama himself. Obama himself is making the phone calls and giving the orders- the ultimate intimidator who plays by the rules of Chicago thug politics.
Why is this so important to Obama? Because most of the other politicians are part of the “old boys club.” They talk big, but in the end they won’t change a thing. Why? Because they are all beholden to big money donors. They are all owned by lobbyists, unions, lawyers, gigantic environmental organizations, multi-national corporations like Big Pharma or Big Oil. Or they are owned lock stock and barrel by foreigners- like George Soros owns Obama, or foreign governments own Hillary with their Clinton Foundation donations.
These run-of-the-mill establishment politicians are all puppets owned by big money. But one man- and only one man- isn’t beholden to anyone. One man doesn’t need foreigners, or foreign governments, or George Soros, or the United Autoworkers, or the Teachers Union, or the SEIU, or the Bar Association to fund his campaign.
Billionaire tycoon and maverick Donald Trump doesn’t need anyone’s help. That means he doesn’t care what the media says. He doesn’t care what the corporate elites think. That makes him very dangerous to the entrenched interests. That makes Trump a huge threat. Trump can ruin everything for the bribed politicians and their spoiled slave masters.
Don’t you ever wonder why the GOP has never tried to impeach Obama? Don’t you wonder why Boehner and McConnell talk a big game, but never actually try to stop Obama? Don’t you wonder why Congress holds the purse strings, yet they’ve never tried to defund Obamacare or Obama’s clearly illegal Executive Action on amnesty for illegal aliens? Bizarre, right? It defies logic, right?
Well first, I’d guess many key Republicans are being bribed. Secondly, I believe many key Republicans are being blackmailed. Whether they are having affairs…or secretly gay…or stealing taxpayer money…the NSA knows everything.
Ask former House Speaker Dennis Hastert about that. The government even knew he was withdrawing large sums of his own money, from his own bank account. Trust me- the NSA, SEC, IRS and all the other 3-letter government agencies are watching every Republican political leader. They know everything.
Thirdly, many Republicans are petrified of being called “racists.” So they are scared to ever criticize Obama, or call out his crimes, let alone demand his impeachment.
Fourth, why rock the boat? After defeat or retirement, if you’re a “good boy” you’ve got a $5 million dollar per year lobbying job waiting.
The big money interests have the system gamed. Win or lose…they win.
But Donald Trump doesn’t play by any of these rules. Trump breaks up this nice cozy relationship between big government, big media and big business. All the rules are out the window if Donald wins the presidency. The other politicians will protect Obama and his aides. But not Donald.
Remember Trump is the guy who publicly questioned Obama’s birth certificate. He questioned Obama’s college records and how a mediocre student got into an Ivy League university.
Now he’s doing something no Republican has the chutzpah to do- question our relationship with Mexico …question why the border is wide open…questioning why no wall has been built across the border…questioning if allowing millions of illegal aliens into America is in our best interests…questioning why so many illegal aliens commit violent crimes yet are not deported…questioning why our trade deals with Mexico, Russia and China are so bad.
Donald Trump has the audacity to ask out loud why American workers always get the short end of the stick? Good question.
I’m certain Trump will question what happened to the almost billion dollars given in a rigged no-bid contract to college friends of Michele Obama at foreign companies to build the defective Obamacare web sites. By the way that tab is now up to $5 billion.
Trump will ask if Obamacare’s architects can be charged with fraud for selling it by lying. He will ask if Obama himself committed fraud when he said, “If you like your healthcare plan, you can keep it.”
Trump will investigate Obama’s widespread IRS conspiracy, not to mention Obama’s college records.
Trump will prosecute Hillary Clinton and Obama for fraud committed to cover-up Benghazi before the election.
How about the fraud committed by employees of the Labor Department when they made up dramatic job numbers in the last jobs report before the 2012 election.
Obama, the multi-national corporations and the media need to stop this. They recognize this could get out of control. If left unchecked telling the raw truth and asking questions everyone else is afraid to ask, Donald could wake a sleeping giant.
Trump’s election would be a nightmare. Obama has committed many crimes. No one else but Donald would dare to prosecute. Donald Trump will not hesitate. Once Donald gets in and gets a look at “the cooked books” and Obama’s records, the game is over. The gig is up. The goose is cooked.
Eric Holder could wind up in prison. Valerie Jarrett could wind up in prison. Obama bundler Jon Corzine could wind up in prison for losing $1.5 billion of customer money.
Hillary Clinton could wind up in jail for deleting 32,000 emails …or accepting bribes from foreign governments while Secretary of State …or for “misplacing” $6 billion as head of State Department …or for lying about Benghazi.
The entire upper level management of the IRS could wind up in prison. Obamacare will be defunded and dismantled. The Obama Crime Family will be prosecuted for crimes against the American people. And Obama himself could wind up ruined, his legacy in tatters.
Trump will investigate. Trump will prosecute. Trump will go after everyone involved…just for fun. That will all happen on Trump’s first day in the White House.
Who knows what Donald will do on day #2?
That’s why the dogs of hell have been unleashed on Donald Trump. That’s why we must all support Donald. This may be our only shot at saving America, uncovering the crimes committed against our nation and prosecuting all of those involved.
HOW TO FIX CONGRESS AND BALANCE THE BUDGET
Posted July 25, 2015
For the jobs they are doing, US Senators and Representatives are being over paid substantially. I know of no corporation in America that offers the kind of salary and benefits that our elect representatives in Washington have voted in for themselves.
Read the following information and if you agree we need to cut salaries and benefits to all our elected and appointed, Washington Bureaucrats, share it on your facebook page. These Bureaucrats salaries and benefits should be in line with that which public school teachers and deployed military personnel receive.
Salary of retired US Presidents .. . . . .. . . . . .. . $180,000 FOR LIFE
Salary of House/Senate members .. . . . .. . . . $174,000 FOR LIFE
Salary of Speaker of the House .. . . . .. . . . . $223,500 FOR LIFE
Salary of Majority/Minority Leaders . . .. . . . . $193,400 FOR LIFE
Average Salary of a teacher . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. .. $40,065
Average Salary of a deployed Soldier . . .. . . .. $38,000
We should start with elected and appointed bureaucrats salaries and benefits and continue through all the government agencies, bringing salaries and benefits into alignment with what civilians make doing similar jobs. I think the monies saved through these salary and benefit realignments should be placed into the Social Security fund and a lock put on the Social Security founds so that the Social Security funds are used for paying Social Security benefits and nothing else.
If you agree share it on facebook, as I just did.
It is reported that Warren Buffet, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the best quotes about the debt ceiling:
"I could end the deficit in five minutes," he told CNBC. "You just pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible for re-election".
The 26th Amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only three months and eight days to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it. That was in 1971 - before computers, e-mail, cell phones, etc.
Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took one (1) year or less to become the law of the land - all because of public pressure.
I am asking everyone who wants to see this nation become financially sound with a balanced budget and a much smaller bureaucracy, to highlight, copy and paste this article into an email and send it to everyone on your contacts lists.
God bless everyone who gets involved in this project and God bless our efforts to get America back on a financial responsible footing. And God bless responsible Americans everywhere.
Suggested Congressional Reform Act of 2015
1. No Tenure / No Pension. A Congressman/woman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they're out of office.
2. Congress (past, present, & future) participates in Social Security.
All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.
3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.
4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.
5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.
6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.
7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen/women are void effective 12/1/15. The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen/women.
Congress made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and go back to work.
Don't you think it's time?
THIS IS HOW YOU FIX CONGRESS!
More Muslims In The Executive Branch of Government Than Ever Before in the History of This Nation
Never have there been in the U.S. government, so many individuals who belong to a religion that you either join or you will be killed!
When you read this you will understand why President Obama refuses to say the words "radical Islam."
Did you know that we now have a Muslim controlled executive branch in our government?
John Brennan, current head of the CIA converted to Islam while stationed in Saudi Arabia.
President Obama's top advisor, Valerie Jarrett, is a Muslim who was born in Iran where her parents still live.
Hillary Clinton's top advisor, Huma Abedin is a Muslim, whose mother and brother are involved in the now outlawed Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.
Assistant Secretary for Policy Development for Homeland Security, Arif Aikhan, is a Muslim.
Homeland Security Advisor, Mohammed Elibiary, is a Muslim.
President Obama’s advisor and founder of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, Salam al-Marayati, is a Muslim.
President Obama's Sharia Czar, Imam Mohamed Magid, of the Islamic Society of North America is a Muslim.
Whitehouse Advisory Council on Faith-Based Neighborhood Partnerships, Eboo Patel, is a Muslim.
It's questionable if President Obama ever officially took the oath of office when he was sworn in. He didn't repeat the oath properly to defend our nation and our Constitution. Later the Democrats claimed he was given the oath again in private?
CIA director John Brennan, a convert to Islam took his oath on a copy of the Constitution, not a Bible.
Congressman, Keith Ellison, a self - proclaimed Muslim took his oath on a copy of the Qur'an.
Congresswoman Michele Bachman was vilified and almost tarred and feathered by Democrats when she voiced her concern about Muslims taking over our government.
Considering all these appointments, it would explain why President Obama and his minions are systematically destroying our nation, supporting radical Muslim groups worldwide, opening our southern border, promoting the teaching of Islam in our public schools and turning a blind eye to the genocide being perpetrated on Christians all over Africa and the Middle East.
Have you noticed, the more damage President Obama does as out President, the more arrogant he becomes?!
Our nation and our government has been infiltrated by people who want to destroy us. It can only get worse!
An End of Days Prophesy:Posted July 16th, 2015
"Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold." Matthew 24:12
Christianity 2015: Pew - people leaving Christianity in the past year has grown by 20 million. 2007 78.4% claim to be Christians. 2014 70.6%. Drop of 5 million adults.85% were raised Christians, but today nearly a quarter of them don't claim to be Christians. This group median age is 36. Protestant is 52 and Catholic is 49. For every one convert to Christianity there are four that left the fath. This is happening throughout the country including the Bible belt.
Persecution of Christians in the USA?
Exposed: Christian Students Rejected, Failed, and Expelled for their Faith by State Universities
Public colleges and universities are taking the gloves off when it comes to Christian students on their campuses. Gone are the days of surreptitious slights against Christians; now it is open season on faith. Blatant, in-your-face anti-Christian discrimination is the new norm.
Christian students now face their applications being rejected because they let it slip out that they are a person of faith, receiving failing grades for daring to allow their religious beliefs to outweigh the omniscience of the educational elites, or being outright expelled for having the audacity to live in accordance with their faith.
The rise of anti-Christian discrimination on public university campuses is astounding in its breadth and shocking in its shamelessness.
The American Center for Law & Justice (ACLJ) is currently representing two students who were denied admission to the Radiation Therapy Program at the Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC): Brandon Jenkins and Dustin Buxton. These students, who were acting out their Christian faith by seeking to serve the hurting and the sick, were brazenly refused admission because of their professed belief in God.
One student, Brandon, was denied admission because when asked in an admissions interview what was the most important thing in his life, he replied simply, “My God.” In rejecting his application, Radiation Therapy Program Director Dr. Dougherty informed Brandon, “I understand that religion is a major part of your life. . . however, this field is not the place for religion. . . . If you interview in the future, you may want to leave your thoughts and beliefs out of the interview process.” The college unapologetically doubled down on this sentiment, stating that Dr. Dougherty’s statement “is not bad advice,” and that students, when interviewing for secular positions, would be better advised to “have a concrete reason for wanting to undertake the training at hand than to say only that God directed one to do it.” (For more on Brandon’s case, click here). This situation is almost unbelievable, but unfortunately Brandon isn’t alone.
Dustin was similarly denied admission to CCBC’s Radiation Therapy Program because when asked about the guiding principle in his life during his interview process, he answered simply, “My faith.” Dr. Dougherty scored the Christian student’s interview low because “He [Dustin] also brought up religion a great deal during the interview.” When we notified the college of its discriminatory conduct, rather than apologizing for their clearly discriminatory decision, CCBC instead retaliated by placing an eighty-five year hold on Dustin’s account, forbidding him from registering for any classes. (For more on Dustin’s case, click here).
We’re in federal court in both of these cases. This college’s anti-Christian discrimination is not only unconscionable, it’s unconstitutional. However, this college is far from alone in its attack on Christian students.
Sadly, we are seeing a rise of instances across the country in which students at public universities and colleges are being unjustly discriminated against because of their professed Christian faith. Audrey Jarvis, a student at Sonoma State University in California, was asked by a university administrator to remove her cross necklace during orientation because it could potentially offend others. In Florida, at Polk State College, a professor gave a student zeros on several assignments because the student refused to agree with the professor’s anti-Christian bias. The course syllabus even stated, “[t]he point of this is not to ‘bash’ any religion, we should NEVER favor one over another, they all come from the same source, HUMAN IMAGINATION….”
At Florida Atlantic University, a student was reportedly ordered to write the name of “Jesus” on a piece of paper and stomp on it. A student at Eastern Michigan University was expelled for expressing her faith in a counseling program.
Likewise, a student at the University of Wisconsin was informed by her professor that “[r]eligious contemplations and the bible [sic] belong to a different realm and not academic sources. So your argumentation along Christian lines . . . are [sic] inappropriate for this presentation. I will not allow you to present unless you change this. You will also fail your presentation if your [sic] discuss religion in connection with it.”
Additionally, Christian organizations are being removed from public university campuses. California State universities have effectively evicted Christian organizations from university campuses by refusing to recognize Christian organizations in college directories and university websites, increasing their room rental fees, and forbidding them from representing themselves at campus-wide open houses, until the Christian organizations accept California State University’s “all-comers” policy.
In light of the prevalent rise of hostility towards religion by public universities and colleges, and the unapologetic discrimination against those professing Christian beliefs, we at the ACLJ are addressing the problem, and we are working towards gaining greater protections for religious liberties. The ACLJ has launched a new public advocacy campaign, joined by tens of thousands of Americans. Along with our representation of students like Brandon and Dustin in court, we’re sending a message to state colleges and universities across America: stop anti-Christian discrimination now.
These lawsuits demonstrate to public universities and colleges that discrimination against students because of their profession of Christian beliefs is unacceptable – the American public will not support such blatant, unconstitutional discrimination against, and suppression of, religious freedoms. In short, we won’t tolerate it.
Matthew Clark is Senior Counsel for Digital Advocacy with the ACLJ. A lifelong citizen of the Commonwealth of Virginia, he lives with his wife and four children in Northern Virginia. Follow Matthew Clark: @_MatthewClark.
World strikes final “historic” nuclear deal with Iran. Will it bring peace, or war? Here are my initial thoughts.
In Uncategorized on July 14, 2015 at 5:30 pm
(Central Israel) — Lynn and I flew back home to Israel today, and arrived just as the news was breaking that the international community has struck a final nuclear deal with Iran.
Will it bring peace, or war? I am still reading through the 100-page agreement and will have more analysis later. But here are a few initial comments and observations.
President Obama and his team are convinced they have cut off Iran’s path to The Bomb and that the world will now enter a season of peace and stability. “Today after two years of negotiation the United States together with the international community has achieved something that decades of animosity has not: a comprehensive long-term deal with Iran that will prevent it from obtaining a nuclear weapon,” the president said.
The Iranian leadership is euphoric — they are calling the agreement “historic,” and celebrating their victory over the West. No wonder. They got nearly everything they wanted and gave up no serious concessions. Under this deal, Iran can continue enriching uranium. They don’t have to dismantle any nuclear facilities — not a single one. They don’t have to shut down their ballistic missile factories or dismantle any of their ballistic missiles. They don’t have to promise to stop funding and supporting international terrorism. They don’t have to release a single American citizen held in Iran — not Pastor Saeed or the Washington Post reporter on trial for his life or any of the others. The list goes on and on.
The Israeli government is also calling the deal historic — “a stunning historic mistake.” In the car ride from the airport to our home, Lynn and I listened to a live radio broadcast of Prime Minister Netanyahu addressing the nation. Here are some of the highlights:
Does Netanyahu’s remarks signal military action against Iran is coming, and/or coming soon? That’s not clear. But it cannot be ruled out. Israeli leaders certainly want to find a way to neutralize the Iran nuclear threat without using force. But Israel has successfully used preemptive air strikes to destroy two foreign nuclear facilities over the years, in Iraq in 1981, and in Syria in 2007. The possibility of an Israeli preemptive strike against Iran has just gone up significantly.
Readers of this blog know that I wrote a trilogy of political thrillers several years ago — The Twelfth Imam, The Tehran Initiative, and Damascus Countdown — imagining what might happen if a foolish American President inadvertently allowed Iran to secretly build a small arsenal of nuclear weapons, and an Israeli Prime Minister decided he had no other option than to launch a massive preemptive strike against Iran. Still, that was fiction. I pray that nothing in those novels will come to pass. I certainly don’t wish for a war with Iran, especially now that my family and I live in Israel. Indeed, I’m praying for a peaceful resolution to this mounting crisis, and I’m asking the Lord to move mightily to bring down this evil regime in Tehran and end the nuclear threat through any means other than war. But the Lord may allow a war to come. Leaders in this region — both Israeli and Arab — may conclude a preemptive war soon would be far preferable to a nuclear war with Iran later. So we must be ready for whatever comes next. I hope you will join me in praying for “the peace of Jerusalem,” as the Psalmist commands us in Psalm 122:6. Pray, too, for wisdom for the leaders in this region to know how best to deal with this challenge. And pray that the people and leaders of the region turn to the Lord for His wisdom and His grace and salvation, not their own.
Again, I will post more analysis in the days ahead as I work my way through the agreement, and as we see how other leaders and nations react to the deal. For now, let me share with you what the former head of Israeli military intelligence noted in assessingthe situation: “There are three likely scenarios for where the world goes from here,” notes Amos Yadlin.
“The deal and the lifting of sanctions on Tehran will pour more than $100 billion into Iran,” notes Yadlin. “Even a fraction of that sum will triple the budgets of terrorists such as Assad, Hizbullah and Hamas.”
He adds: “Israel learned long ago that taking out a nuclear program doesn’t equate to war.”
A Warning to the American Church
Posted July 9, 2015
Hello. This message is for my fellow Christians in the United States of America, especially those who are in the clergy. I want to talk to you about church and State. I must confess that I’m a layman in both areas. That is to say, I’ve not made a career in either ministry or politics. But I’m Christian. I’ve been a follower of Christ for 35 of my 45 years, and I’ve been a faithful member of the church. And I’m a patriot, born and raised in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.
I love this country. That is to say, I love the country that was founded here in 1776. It is not that country anymore, and in recent years – and in recent days – we have drifted farther from our founding principles than I think anyone could ever have imagined. We are a nation in crisis. And it is my opinion that we are where we are in large measure because of a slumbering, slothful church who has neglected her civic duties in a nation of the People, by the People, and for the People. Regrettably, pastors in churches across America impel this attitude of neglect through a misunderstanding first of American politics and second of the proper response – the Scriptural response – of godly people to ungodly government.
I am compelled to speak out – to respond to the recent court ruling on same-sex marriage and the response of some church leaders to that ruling. Some churches advocate capitulation. They wave the white flag of surrender and quote Romans 13 in defense of their shameful cowardice. To do so makes them wrong on at least two counts: that the Court is our final governing authority, and that as Christians we must submit blindly to any and all government foisted upon us.
We often hear about the separation of church and state. It is almost always presented in a skewed and illegitimate manner and I wonder if that has polluted our thinking even as Christians in America. What does it even mean, exactly… separation of church and State? Is it even possible to separate church and state? Well, the answer of course is yes… and no. It is possible to separate the Church and State legally, and America has done a good job of that. And both the primary reason and result has been to protect the church from the State, and not vice versa.
I must point out that the words “separation of church and state” are not found in the Constitution, or the Declaration of Independence, or in the Federalist Papers. On the other hand, the freedom to worship God without interference from the federal government is explicitly written into the Constitution. As is the prohibition of the federal government to “establish” a religion – understood by the founding generation as using tax money to fund a State Church.
While it is certainly possible, and desirable, to not use the force of government to tax the People to support a Church they might abhor, it is impossible to divorce religion from politics. This is because we live in a nation governed by the People (capital P) and for religious people our religious beliefs form the core of our worldview and therefore impacts every sphere of life. Indeed, it’s not even desirable, at least not to our founding generation, to divorce religion from politics. “Our constitution was written for a moral and religious people,” said John Adams, “It is wholly inadequate for the governance of any other.” In his farewell address George Washington admonished us: “Let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion”
So what is the role of the Christian – and the body of Christians called the Church – in American politics? It is an immensely important question because I believe, unfortunately, that a misunderstanding of the role of the Church in politics – from those both inside and outside the Church – is leading us down a death spiral of cultural depravity, which ultimately will lead to the very destruction of our nation, as forewarned by John Adams. It will compromise our ability to worship God freely, and to secure this liberty for our children and grandchildren. We MUST correct our understanding soon, or it will soon be too late to save America.
Two questions must be addressed: who is our governing authority, and is it the will of God that man be subject to any and every ruler, or government, foisted upon him?
What form of government do we have in the United States? Most will answer: “We have a democracy.” Fortunately, we do NOT have a democracy in this country. In fact, our founding fathers recognized that democracies were as despotic and destructive to liberty as monarchies and took great pains to protect us from the evils of democracy. What we actually have is absolutely unique in world history and difficult to describe in a word. We are sometimes described as a Constitutional Republic, and that is a good description, but we are more than that because the United States are a federation of Constitutional Republics. Each state is sovereign, though we rarely think of them as sovereign today. Each State is itself a Republic (this is actually mandated by Article IV, section 4 of the U.S. Constitution): every State in the Union must have a Republican form of government.
Who is the supreme ruler, that is, the ultimate governing authority, in the United States of America? It is not the President. It is not the Congress or the Supreme Court.
Most people respond, “The president.” A few others may answer, “The congress” or “the federal government.” But It is no mistake, that is to say it is by design that the U.S. Constitution begins with the words: “We the People of the United States in order to form a more perfect Union…”. In America, the People are sovereign; we govern ourselves. This is the essence of the American Experiment, described this way by Publius in Federalist Papers #1: “It seems to have been reserved to the people of this country to decide the important question, whether societies of men are really capable or not of establishing good government from reflection and choice, or whether they are forever destined to depend for their political constitutions on accident and force.
And so, our founding fathers took the once-in-history opportunity to do what had never been done before. They sat down, on a new continent, and through rumination and reflection created a nation governed by the People and structured in such a way as to secure the liberties of every individual. Although many of the founders were young, they were wise beyond their years and they were the products of the Great Awakening, one of the greatest spiritual revivals of this continent. Young Jimmy Madison and Tommy Jefferson were but little children as the revival swept through the colonies in the 1730’s and 40’s. The impact of the Great Awakening on the founding of our nation is obvious.
So, in the USA, the buck stops with “We the People.” We the People are the supreme authority, the governing authority. But what does that actually look like? If the People are the supreme authority how do you avoid anarchy; what the Scripture describes as “every man doing what is right in his own eyes”? How do you avoid anarchy and chaos on the one hand, and monarchy or dictatorship or tyranny on the other? That is the question. And our founders found the answer, in “ordered liberty.” How is liberty “ordered”? Through a Republic structured around a Constitution.
The supreme authority of the land, that is, the People, in 1787 created the supreme law of the land – the Constitution. And recognizing that the living can never be legitimately ruled by the dead, they also created a way for every generation to amend the Constitution if they so desired. But they knew and we must remember that even without a Constitution, We the People are still and always will be the rulers of ourselves, under God.
Until we decide otherwise, the Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the land. It is the ONLY national law, BTW, actually voted upon directly by the People in a purely democratic process, a process called ratification. All subsequent federal laws have been created by our delegated representatives. Every government position, including the President, congressional legislators, and judges were CREATED by the Constitution and are UNDER that law. That is to say, no one is above the law. This is a principle outlined in Scripture. In Deut. 17 and 1 Kings 2 it is mandated that even the king of Israel be UNDER the Mosaic Law. In ancient Israel’s theocracy, God was the source of all law. In the American experiment, We the People are the source of all law, but our laws are based on the Mosaic Law given to mankind from God. By contrast, in a tyranny, the king (or president, or judge, or a legislative body) presumes to be the source of all law. In both cases (the Israeli theocracy and the American Constitutional Republic), the civil authorities are UNDER the law. So, assuming for the moment that God DOES want us to be subject to whatever governing authority is foisted upon us, in the United States, that governing authority is We the People. It is NOT the president, the courts, or even our delegated legislators. The President, our legislators and judges, they are rightly called our public servants, elected or appointed to secure our unalienable rights. And when any member of government, be it a President or a court, seeks to usurp our authority and undermine our liberty by attempting to rule outside those bounds, they are acting outside the bounds of the law. They are law-breakers. They are not even fit to be called servants, much less “governing authorities.” It is therefore completely inappropriate for a pastor or a church to instruct their fellow believers to subject themselves to law-breaking tyrants who violate their oaths, both to the People and to God.
That the People are the final governing authority and the “government” is merely a creation of the People to secure their rights is easily demonstrated using the American Civil War as an example. Let us imagine that we live in Virginia in March 1861. Abraham Lincoln is the president. When the government of Virginia secedes from the Union in April and joins a new Confederacy, the president of that confederacy is Jefferson Davis. Now, who is your president? Is it not the man of your choosing? Or the collective choosing of your fellow Virginians? Is it not then evident that in this country, indeed in every country, that the People are the final authority and that governments are instituted among them deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed?
When the government usurps its delegated authority, when it oversteps its limited and enumerated powers, its edicts are unlawful and void. This message was prompted by the recent SCOTUS ruling that the 50 States in this Union MUST officially accept and endorse same-sex marriage, and by the response of some in the Church to that ruling. As has been noted by many political commentators, the federal government, including SCOTUS has no jurisdiction over marriage – it is not an enumerated power – and so is properly left to the States and to the People to decide the matter. When put to a vote, the overwhelming response of American moral majority is to reject same-sex marriage. However, whenever States attempted to amend their constitutions to reflect these values, the Supreme Court overruled them. Even when the federal government attempt to protect marriage – through the proper legislative avenues – by passing the DOMA the Court again ruled against the legislation, claiming it violated the US Constitution in part because the federal government has no jurisdiction over marriage. But, when marriage is redefined in a way that the People oppose and is unholy, the Court rules that we ALL must imbibe it. This is pure hypocrisy, and tyranny, because five justices have foisted upon 300 million people that which the People have dozens of times rejected by vote. But when a church tweets within hours of this ruling that God’s people are to “submit to the governing authorities” it certainly implies that 1/ the Court is the final authority and has acted properly in making its ruling and 2/ that submission to any government edict, rightly or wrongly given, is evidently absolute and unconditional.
Is submission to governing authority absolute and unconditional?
When is submission to any authority absolute and unconditional? Is a child to submit to a parent unconditionally? Is a wife to submit to her husband unconditionally? Is an employee to submit to an employer unconditionally? The answer of course to these questions is No. Then on what pretext is a citizen, or even a subject, to submit to a government unconditionally? Only God commands absolute power and authority, because He is our Creator; we are his creation. Only God is to be obeyed unconditionally. If we take the position that government is to be obeyed absolutely then we are guilty of erecting an idol and worshiping the creature rather than the created. No governing authority, not even our government when working properly (that is We the People) has absolute governing authority. All governing authorities are subject to God, which is why the Apostle Peter could declare that when the two are in conflict we must obey God rather than man.
Some churches will be tempted to use Daniel as an example of submission to ungodly government. Listen, I get what they are saying: you don’t rise up the ranks as Daniel did, essentially becoming Vice-King of the Babylonian Empire, without working within the system, but I have two words for those who think Daniel is the poster boy of submission to tyrants: lion’s den. It’s one of the most famous stories of the Old Testament. Daniel was tossed to the lions for his disobedience to Nebuchadnezzar, and his friends were tossed into a furnace. When push came to shove, Daniel did what all godly men must do in the face of despotism, obey God rather than man. How many times will we be pushed and shoved before we act? The church did nothing with the Court removed prayer and Scripture from public schools in the 1960’s. The church did nothing when the Court “legalized” abortion in all 50 States in the ‘70’s. Will the church do nothing now as the Court imposes gay marriage upon us and transforms our most cherished institutions? Or worse, will the church tell us to blindly submit to Satan at work in our government?
Some will use Romans 13 as an excuse for inaction. Romans 13 is an admonition to obey the governing authorities. But is it not common sense that Paul is referring to proper government? There are just governments and there are unjust governments. We are to fear and respect just governments and resist unjust governments. I have not yet found a pastor willing to take the position that Christians should have submitted to Adolf Hitler and his Nazi regime. They confess that a government as evil as Hitler’s is to be resisted. But to admit that government should be resisted in such draconian circumstances is to admit that government has limits and should be resisted when overstepping those limits. The dispute, then, is evidently not a matter of principle but a matter of application. Prudence indeed dictates that we should not defy authority for light and transient causes and even the fiery Thomas Paine advised restraint and “working within the system” to correct bad laws that arise from time-to-time. But when the government, through a ceding legislature, a legislative court, and an Executive with a “pen and a phone” advances a long train of abuses meant to strip Christianity from the very soul of America, we must act. I believe the time for restraint and inaction is past us. Our country is crumbling at a dizzying pace. When we hold it within our power to prevent this, and even reverse course, why would we not? How can we not?
How should we respond? What is the proper response of a Christian, and the Church, to the present national crisis? First and foremost, it is to We must educate and mobilize the great body of Christians to participate in the political process. No more silence from the pulpit. If the godly fail to engage, can we be surprised if the ungodly steer government to an agenda hostile to Christianity?
In other words, all it takes for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing.
What then should we do, Church? Nothing? To whom much is given much is required. We have been given a nation. We have been given LIBERTY and we have been charged with preserving it and passing it on to our children and grandchildren. Will we bury it in the ground and then expect a “Well done” when the Master returns? “I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just and that his justice cannot sleep forever.”[i] I do not fear a despotic government, but I do fear the judgment of a holy Deity, and the knowledge that judgment begins with the house of God.
[i] Thomas Jefferson
Publius Christus is a pseudonym.
THE END OF THE AMERICAN AGE
I pray everyone who reads the following message from Jonathan Cahn, the author of “The Harbinger”, The Mystery of the Shemitah, The Harbinger Companion and Study Guide, has begun to read his books and watch his dvd’s on YouTube. I believe without doubt that God has raised up a prophet in this 21st century for the purpose of calling America back to God. Let me also suggest that you log onto www.hopeoftheworld.org and sign up for his monthly devotional, “Sapphires”. Bless you as you enjoy the following article. Tom
“I noted last month, for those who haven’t read The Mystery of the Shemitah, that the word “Shemitah” in Hebrew can be translated as the fall and, by implication, the year of the fall. We are in the year of the Shemitah.
“Everyone reading these words was born in the American age. The American age can be defined as the period of America’s preeminence and supremacy in world history; its time of reigning as what the Bible would call the head of nations.
“There are key moments, thresholds, and milestones in this age. First was when America became the strongest economic power on earth in the latter part of the 19th century. The second was when America emerged as the financial center of the world. This was ushered in with the First World War. Third was when America emerged as the greatest military on earth in 1945, as the nation emerged from the Second World War as the world’s preeminent superpower.
“There is a section in “The Shemitah” called the Mystery of the Towers; the year is given for the first milestone, when the American age began. It was 1871 that America surpassed the British Empire to become the strongest economic power on earth. According to an ancient biblical mystery, that milestone even occurred right after America built the highest tower on earth.
“Since “The Harbinger” came out, I have warned that if America did not return to God, the crown the nation has borne as head of the nations would be removed and the American age we have known all of our lives would come to an end. The Shemitah began at the end of September 2014. Less than one week after it began, it was announced that America had been overtaken militarily as the Soviet Union now had more deployed nuclear missiles. But it was in the second month of the Shemitah that an even more profound announcement was made. It was this: America was no longer the strongest economic power on earth. The age that had begun 140 years earlier was not over. America’s crown as the leading economic world power had been removed. It had now gone to another power – China.
“In another section of “The Shemitah” called The Rise and Fall of Nations, it is outlined how the Shemitah is linked to the ascending and the collapsing of kingdoms, nations, and empires. The Shemitah of 1917 marked the beginning of America’s rise to world superpower as it entered the First World War. The Shemitah of 1945 marked the moment America assumed the mantle of superpower. The Shemitah of 9/11 marked another turning point in American history. As far as the present Shemitah, if nothing else at all happened but that which took place in its first month, the end of the American age, that alone would make it one of the most significant of Shemitahs and years in world history.
“What does it reveal? America’s economic fall has happened as the same time as its spiritual fall from God. The two go together. The Bible declares, righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people. America’s problems are not economic or military, but spiritual. And so with your life. Make sure you are right with God – get everything into and under His will. Seek Him first above all things. And the rest will fall into place and God will bless you as you do”!
Your brother and co-laborer
In His love and service,
SCOTUS: Religious Freedom Must Bow to New Rights
6/29/2015 7:00:00 PM - Daniel Davis
Last Friday's landmark Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage has set the stage for the new legal battle to be waged in the coming years: the battle for religious liberty. Now that same-sex marriage has been declared a constitutional right, those who conscientiously object to affirming same-sex relationships will soon find themselves in the same legal category as the Jim Crow racists who denied African-Americans fair treatment.
The core ideal that has been proffered in the gay rights movement — and which the Supreme Court cited in its ruling — is the ideal of equality. In the law, "equal treatment" is a principle that only applies to things that are fundamentally the same in nature. It means treating things that are the same, the same; but things that are different should, of course, be treated differently. In the debate over same-sex marriage, the left's position had been that same-sex marriage and male-female marriage are qualitatively the same thing. Consequently, they should both receive equal treatment under law. Opponents of same-sex marriage did not deny "equality" per se; they simply held that same-sex relationships were fundamentally different from male-female marriages, and therefore are not entitled to the same treatment.
But that debate is now over, at least legally speaking. The Supreme Court has declared same-sex marriages and traditional male-female marriages to be qualitatively the same, and therefore entitled to equal protection under law. Whether right or wrong, this puts all dissenters in the same legal position as the old Jim Crow racists: they are bigots whose ways cannot be tolerated.
The key question now before the courts is: Are religious objectors to same-sex marriage entitled to act publicly in ways that do not abide the Court's expanded definition of marriage? The likely answer to come from this Court, given its recent opinion, is "No."
In issuing the Court's opinion, Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote briefly of religious liberty protections. Yet he seemed to define religious liberty in terms of speech, not of public action or "free exercise." He writes:
The First Amendment ensures that religious organizations and persons are given proper protection as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths, and to their own deep aspirations to continue the family structure they have long revered.
Yet he also says:
Many who deem same-sex marriage to be wrong reach that conclusion based on decent and honorable religious or philosophical premises, and neither they nor their beliefs are disparaged here. But when that sincere, personal opposition becomes enacted law and public policy, the necessary consequence is to put the imprimatur of the State itself on an exclusion that soon demeans or stigmatizes those whose own liberty is then denied. Under the Constitution, same-sex couples seek in marriage the same legal treatment as opposite-sex couples, and it would disparage their choices and diminish their personhood to deny them this right.
Chief Justice John Roberts took issue with Kennedy's omission of the right to "free exercise":
The majority graciously suggests that religious believers may continue to “advocate” and “teach” their views of marriage. The First Amendment guarantees, however, the freedom to “exercise” religion. Ominously, that is not a word the majority uses. Hard questions arise when people of faith exercise religion in ways that may be seen to conflict with the new right to same-sex marriage—when, for example, a religious college provides married student housing only to opposite-sex married couples, or a religious adoption agency declines to place children with same-sex married couples . . . There is little doubt that these and similar questions will soon be before this Court. Unfortunately, people of faith can take no comfort in the treatment they receive from the majority today.
Justice Clarence Thomas added:
Religious liberty is about more than just the protection for “religious organizations and persons . . . as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths.” Religious liberty is about freedom of action in matters of religion generally, and the scope of that liberty is directly correlated to the civil restraints placed upon religious practice.
The Court's conception of religious liberty, as reflected in Kennedy's opinion, is one that would neuter religion of all public consequence and press it into the private sphere. It would restrict the influence of religion to "pews, homes and hearts." Justice Alito expressed concern over this limiting of religious liberty, particularly as it regards opposition to same-sex marriage:
I assume that those who cling to old beliefs will be able to whisper their thoughts in the recesses of their homes, but if they repeat those views in public, they will risk being labeled as bigots and treated as such by governments, employers, and schools.
The fallout to come for religious liberty is, of course, not yet determined, and it is possible that Kennedy—often the Court's deciding swing vote—will show wiggle room for some religious objectors, depending on the case. But the key upshot from the Court's ruling is clear: when push truly comes to shove, the free exercise of religion must give way to the new sexual orthodoxy that is now enshrined in law.
Meanwhile, Evangelicals and other religious dissenters are preparing to pay the cost of theological faithfulness. Gov. Mike Huckabee anticipates that many pastors, university presidents, and Christian businessmen will be forced to choose between following God's will and obeying the state. The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission is advising churches about the legal implications of this ruling and how to navigate future waters. We have seen the curtailment of religious liberty in other highly secularized western countries, like Canada. This SCOTUS ruling looks to sets the stage for a similar curtailment of religious liberty.
When Christians are forced to choose between God and Caesar, the answer is not a difficult one. But it's a shame that here in America, this once-idealized haven for religious minorities, the awful choice between God and Caesar will likely be thrust upon millions.
Sex Marriage Ruling
6/29/2015 7:55:00 AM - Katie Pavlich
For years conservatives and proponents of religious liberty in America have warned that if same-sex marriage became legal, the left would then pursue revoking the tax exempt status for religious institutions, particularly Christian churches, around the country.
Just days after the Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 decision that gay marriage is a constitutional right, progressive activists like Mark Oppenheimer of the New York Times are calling for tax exempt statutes to be stripped.
The Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage makes it clearer than ever that the government shouldn't be subsidizing religion and non-profits.
Rather than try to rescue tax-exempt status for organizations that dissent from settled public policy on matters of race or sexuality, we need to take a more radical step. It’s time to abolish, or greatly diminish, their tax-exempt statuses.
Defenders of tax exemptions and deductions argues that if we got rid of them charitable giving would drop. It surely would, although how much, we can’t say. But of course government revenue would go up, and that money could be used to, say, house the homeless and feed the hungry. We’d have fewer church soup kitchens — but countries that truly care about poverty don’t rely on churches to run soup kitchens.
So yes, the logic of gay-marriage rights could lead to a reexamination of conservative churches’ tax exemptions (although, as long as the IRS is afraid of challenging Scientology’s exemption, everyone else is probably safe). But when that day comes, it will be long overdue. I can see keeping some exemptions; hospitals, in particular, are an indispensable, and noncontroversial, public good. And localities could always carve out sensible property-tax exceptions for nonprofits their communities need. But it’s time for most nonprofits, like those of us who faithfully cut checks to them, to pay their fair share.
The left will claim they aren't singling out religious institutions through their calls for the revocation of tax exempt statuses because they include non-profits, but the fact is that a majority of non-profits in the country are religious. The Salvation Army, which truly helps the homeless and addicted clean up their lives and get off the streets, is one example.
Meanwhile, the ACLU said over the weekend it will no longer defend the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which was signed into law by President Bill Clinton in the 1990s after a unanimous vote in the Senate.
Although Justice Kennedy did carve out an exception for religious liberty in his opinion on same-sex marriage last week, it won't be enough to protect it going forward.
"Finally, it must be emphasized that religions, and those who adhere to religious doctrines, may continue to advocate with utmost, sincere conviction that, by divine precepts, same-sex marriage should not be condoned. The First Amendment ensures that religious organizations and persons are given proper protection as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths, and to their own deep aspirations to continue the family structure they have long revered. The same is true of those who oppose same-sex marriage for other reasons. In turn, those who believe allowing same-sex marriage is proper or indeed essential, whether as a matter of religious conviction or secular belief, may engage those who disagree with their view in an open and searching debate. The Constitution, however, does not permit the State to bar same-sex couples from marriage on the same terms as accorded to couples of the opposite sex," Kennedy said in the opinion.
Religious liberty is under attack in America and the next five years will serve as a battleground to protect or destroy it. If religious liberty is in fact destroyed, America will no longer hold onto one of the most important principles that makes it an exceptional nation more tolerant than the rest in the world. We are at a tipping point.
The Supreme Court of the USA Has Failed God and Man
The Supreme Court of The United States of America just forced an anti- biblical, Satan inspired law upon the Church of Jesus Christ in America. God states very clearly that a marriage is to be between a man and a woman. But the SCOTUS has said, “No God You are wrong! Marriage can be between two men, two women, and soon it will be ok for a man to marry his dog, if he feels inclined to do so”.
However, the SCOTUS has it wrong and not God. To begin with God created man after His own image; Forming him from the dust of the earth.
“So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him….” Gen. 1:27;
“And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being” Gen. 2:7.
After God created man He took man and put him in a beautiful garden which He had created especially for mankind.
“Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it” Gen. 2:15.
As the LORD God watched the first man working in this beautiful creation, He decided man needed a companion, a helpmate, a soulmate - with whom he could share his life.
“And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him”” Gen. 2:18.
I believe at this point God may have looked down through the corridors of coming time and decided that what man needed was another person who would not only complete the man but would provide the way of complimenting the man and enabling His creation to repopulate the earth. In all the essential ways this companion would be different from man but in the inessential ways she would be very much like him. And that made all the difference.
God put the man to sleep and removed from his body a rib from which he created this new being. Here is how the Holy Spirit puts it:
“And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. 22 Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man” Gen. 2:21-22.
Now, it is said by some bible scholars that it was Adam who actually named this beautiful new creation simple by his exclamation when God presented her to him. What I am told that Adam said was: “Woe!! Man!!!” Then when his heart quit fluttering and he was able to speak once again he said:
“This is now bone of my bones And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man” Gen. 2:23.
Those of you who have known me in a church setting, know that I am compelled to takes notes. I was taught early on in my walk with the Lord to keep a spiritual journal and I have found it greatly benefits me when I try to recall what the Lord wanted me to take away from any sermon or message. I promise you though I do not do this at funerals and weddings.
For some time now, the Holy Spirit has encouraged me to take my notes and share the heart of what I believe a speaker had to say in his message on my website and now on facebook. Here is my first attempt at blessing others through a message that has blessed me.
This morning my pastor, Doug Clark, preached/taught from Psalms 34. Though he read and made many succinct comments on verses 1 through 7, the bulk of his sermon came from verse 8:
“Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!” Ps. 34:8
Pastor Doug read the scripture from the NIV, however all scripture which I shall quote will be from the NKJV, mainly because my Bible Study Software does not include the NIV.
My pastor’s first point was that God wants us to experience His goodness. Therefore, the phrase in verse eight, ‘Taste and see’ is God’s way of saying to the reader “try me”, or “experience me and my ways and see if you do not find that my goodness is what you desire and need”.
He reminded us of what Jesus said in Matthew’s gospel, chapter seven, vs seven and eight:
"Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened”.
Jesus is saying that as children of God and His followers, we are to actively seek, ask, find, and enjoy all of God’s goodness. However, as we diligently seek, ask, discover, and enjoy God’s goodness, we are to realize that everything that comes our way in this life is not going to be good. In other words though God is going to be good all the time, what this world sends into our lives will not always be good.
Pastor Doug said: “Sometimes we find that the things we thought were good are not what they seem to be. Some of the things promoted as good turn out to be lies”.
Immediately I thought, that’s true because Scriptures tell us that Satan is the father of lies. We will discover these truths of life as we read and study God’s word, God’s word will also reveal God’s will for us and as we walk in obedience to God’s will Satan will do everything in his power to defeat us.
Pastor Doug shared an excellent quote from Chris Witt, a young man on our Church Pastoral Staff, in reference to God’s goodness. Chris said:
“God is bound by His perfect goodness. We as a people called to live by faith in God must understand that faith only works in our lives, if we know and believe that God is good”.
Another excellent point that pastor Doug made was: “God’s goodness is not measured by our circumstance”.
That is because our circumstances change, sometimes not for the good, but God’s goodness never changes. His goodness, like Himself, is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
Pastor Doug shared a quote by Andy Stanley that is very apropos in light of the fact that we often let our circumstances overshadow God’s goodness. Andy said:
“God’s goodness is never measured by our circumstances, but by the cross”!
Pastor Doug pointed out that: Believers should be on a need to know basis in their relationship with God, because sometimes we need to know less”.
I take from that comment that we need to seek to know only that which will enhance our relationship with the Lord.
As soon as I heard the pastor make the statement above about our relationship with God being on a need to know basis, I had this thought:
“Because of the ramifications of sin, sometimes it would spiritually benefit us to know less”. Think about that, especially when we are asked to pray for someone, whether it is about a sin issue, a health issue, or a personal issue. We only need to know enough to pray intelligently. Period.
I pray that the things my pastor shared will bless others as they have blessed me.
Posted on hislightshining.com 8-12-2014
(Ames, Iowa) — It was an honor to be invited to speak at the 2014 Family Leadership Summit here in Ames, Iowa, and to spend personal time with many of the speakers and grassroots leaders who attended.
Most of the speakers were Governors, Senators, Congressman and potential presidential contenders. The covered a range of economic, social and foreign policy issues. I was specifically invited to speak about “The Future of America, Israel & the Middle East In Light of the Scriptures.”
The following are the notes I used for my address. I hope you find them helpful. Please feel free to pass them on to others, including leaders and future leaders. Note that this is not a verbatim transcript. But please feel free to watch or listen to my remarks, which were based on these notes.
THE FUTURE OF AMERICA, ISRAEL & THE MIDDLE EAST IN LIGHT OF THE SCRIPTURES
Good morning. It is an honor to be back in Iowa, and to address The Family Leadership Summit. Thanks to Bob Vander Plaats and his team for inviting me back, especially at a time of great crisis for our country, and for Israel and our allies in the Middle East, who are facing a jihadist rampage.
When I was here for the first Summit in 2012, I made two simple points.
I’d like to recap them here because I think they remain relevant for where we are as a nation two years later. And then I’d like to add a third point for this year.
I’m so grateful that Bob and his team are doing all they can to call Iowans and all Americans to pray and fast and seek the Lord for a Third Great Awakening. We need this more than ever.
Let me now share a bit more on each point.
1. America is not simply in decline. We are heading for collapse, for implosion.
There are many reasons for this, including a massive and crushing national debt with no end in sight, the implosion of families through divorce and out-of-wedlock-birth and the assault on traditional marriage, violent crime, drug use, pornography and so forth. I wrote about this in more detail in my 2012 non-fiction book, Implosion: Can America Recover From Its Economic & Spiritual Challenges In Time?, so I won’t take the time today to go through each of these issues in detail.
But I do want to discuss one threat above all: America faces the implosion because we face divine judgment for murdering so many unborn children.
Several years ago, I had the opportunity to visit Auschwitz, the Nazi death camp in Poland. As I stood in an actual gas chamber that was used to systematically murder so many Jews, political prisoners and others, it was a horrifying experience. I’m Gentile on my mother’s side, and Jewish on my father’s side, and standing there thinking about how the Nazis created these murder factories to kill six million Jews was one of the most painful experiences of my life.
But as I stood in that gas chamber, I could not help but think of how my own country, America — a country I love so dearly — has created murder factories to kill millions of people, as well. I was born in 1967. In my lifetime — since 1973 — the American people have legally murdered more than 55 million babies. If this is not stopped soon, we will reach 60 million. Think about that. If we really get to the point that our nation has systematically murdered 60 million human beings, we will have murdered 10 times more people than the Nazis killed of the Jews.
Now we know how God judged Germany and the Nazi regime through a crushing defeat in World War II, and we believe that the Nazis deserved such judgment. What do we think is going to happen if continue to murder millions of children? We are going to face the judgment of God. It is extraordinary that it hasn’t happened already.
There is hope, but we are running out of time. We could repent as a nation. We could turn from our wicked ways, plead with God and His Son the Lord Jesus Christ to forgive our sins, and plead with Him to heal our land.
The Bible says, “If My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)
This was specifically a promise given to the nation of Israel in the Old Testament. But it is a principle we can apply today. We could plead with God for forgiveness, and He could grant it. He could give us a sweeping series of revivals that could culminate in a Third Great Awakening, with hundreds of millions of Americans — beginning with the Church — repenting of our sins, turning to Christ, praying, fasting, reading God’s Word and seeking to walk in the power of the Holy Spirit.
This is possible. There is hope. But again, we are running out of time.
But let’s be clear: Without a revival, we are on the road to implosion. Indeed, the threat of implosion is far beyond what the next President can solve alone — we desperately need a Third Great Awakening.
2. We must all ask ourselves a critically important question: “Is America at a Jonah moment, or a Nahum moment?”
In the Old Testament book of Jonah, the Hebrew prophet was sent by the Lord to the wicked city of Nineveh — the capital of the Assyrian empire — in order to preach a message of imminent judgment. Let’s not focus for the moment on the fact that Jonah didn’t want to obey the Lord and preach this messsage, and thus fled on a ship headed in the other direction.
For now, let’s focus on the fact that when Jonah finally did obey the Lord and did start preaching in Ninevah, he didn’t call the people to repentance. Rather, Jonah declared, “Forty days and Ninevah will be overthrown.” (Jonah 3:4) However, even though Jonah never called the people to plead to the One True God of Israel to have mercy on their souls and on their city, even though Jonah never called on the people to beg for forgiveness and turn away from their wickedness, that is, in fact, exactly what the Ninevites did.
The text says: “Then the people of Ninevah believed in God; and they called a fast and put on sackcloth from the greatest to the least of them. When the word reached the king of Ninevah, he arose from his throne, laid aside his robe from him, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat on the ashes. He issued a proclamation and it said, ‘In Ninevah by the decree of the king and his nobles: Do not let man, beast, herd, or flock taste a thing. Do not let them eat or drink water. But both man and beast must be covered with sackcloth; and let men call on God earnestly that each may turn from his wicked way and from the violence which is in his hands. Who knows, God may turn and relent and withdraw His burning anger so that we shall not perish?’” (Jonah 3:5-9)
Sure enough, the Lord heard the earnest prayers of the people — and their king — as they repented, and He relented. “When God saw their deeds, that they turned from their wicked way, then God relented concerning the calamity which He had declared He would bring upon them. And He did not do it.” The promised judgment did not come. The people and their city were spared from God’s wrath. What an extraordinary moment. The pagan people heard the word of the Lord and it burned in their hearts. They believed God’s word, pleaded for mercy, and the Lord gave them mercy, even though He had never indicated that He would do so.
But this was not the only time the word of the Lord came to the people of Ninevah.
Many years later, the next generation of Ninevites had abandoned the Lord and fallen back into tremendous evil, violence, bloodshed, lies, sorcery and other wickedness. In the Old Testament book of Nahum, we read that the Lord again spoke to the people of Ninevah, this time through a different Hebrew prophet, this one named Nahum. Yet this time the people of Ninevah did not repent. They did not listen to God’s word. They did not plead for mercy. They did not turn from their wicked ways and start praying, fasting and begging God for mercy. And thus, mercy did not come. Instead, the judgment of God came upon the people, and in 612 B.C. the city of Ninevah was utterly destroyed.
Today we as Americans must confront this question: Is America in a “Jonah” moment, or a “Nahum” moment? That is, will we hear the word of the Lord that we have strayed far from the teachings of the Bible and allowed our land to become polluted with abortions and pornography and violence and wickedness of all kinds? Will we admit how far we are from God’s plan and purpose for our lives? Will we confess that our hearts are far from Jesus Christ and plead with the Lord for His mercy and grace and forgiveness? Will we fast and pray and earnestly seek God’s face, and implore Christ to give us a Third Great Awakening? Or will we ignore the word of the Lord and continue in our sins and watch our nation continue to decline, or even implode?
Twice in American history we have seen sweeping spiritual revivals known as the Great Awakening and the Second Great Awakening, respectively. Millions of Americans repented of their sins during those seasons, became devout followers of Jesus Christ, began to read the Bible voraciously and to obey the word of the Lord. Nowhere in Scripture, however, has America been promised a spiritual revival in the 21st century, much less one that would be so sweeping, so game-changing that it would qualify as a Third Great Awakening. But who knows? Perhaps the Lord will show us tremendous mercy and forgiveness if we all humble ourselves and pray, and seek His face, and turn from our wicked ways? However, if we don’t repent and turn back to the Lord Jesus Christ, we may very well consign ourselves to suffer the fate of the Ninevites during the time of Nahum.
3. What happens if — on top of all our nation’s challenges and sins — America abandons or turns against Israel?
The fate of America, Israel and the Middle East are inextricably linked for three reasons.
Consider three passages of Scripture:
Genesis 12:3 — In Genesis 12, the Lord God chooses Abram, calls him out of Ur of the Chaldees (located in modern-day Iraq, 220 miles southeast of Baghdad) to go to “a land that I will show you,” which turns out to be the land later called Israel. The Lord promises to bless Abram, and through him bless “all the families of the earth.” Specifically in 12:3, the Lord says, “I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse. And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.” As one reads through the rest of the book of Genesis, it becomes clear that this promise from God is passed down from Abram (who is later named Abraham) to Isaac to Jacob (later named Israel) and then to Jacob’s descendants, Israel and the Jewish people. Thus, the Lord is making clear that those who bless Israel and the Jewish people He will bless, and those who curse them He will curse. If America turns against or abandons Israel and the Jews after being their closest friend and ally for so many decades, God warns He will bring judgment upon us.
Joel 3:1-2 — In the first chapter of the book written by the Hebrew prophet Joel, the Lord warns the Israelites and “all inhabitants of the land” that they need to “wake up” from their physical and spiritual drunkenness, stupor and wandering from the Lord. In the second chapter, the Lord also calls the people to pray and fast and humbly seek God’s forgiveness and favor because “the Day of the Lord is coming.” In the third chapter, the Lord says that before the “Day of the Lord” (the tribulation and the Second Coming), the Lord will “restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem.” In the context of other prophecies in Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and other Hebrew prophets, we know this means Israel will be miraculously reborn as a nation, the Jews will return to the land of Israel and Judah and to Jerusalem after centuries of exile, and that the Lord will use the Jewish people to rebuild the ancient ruins of their ancient homeland and build a nation of prosperity and security.
Consider the specific passage of chapter 3, verses one and two: “For behold, in those days and at that time, when I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem, I will gather all the nations and bring them down to the valley of Jehoshaphat. Then I will enter into judgment with them there on behalf of My people and My inheritance, Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; and they have divided up My land.”
The Lord specifically warns that “all the nations” who “have divided up My land” will be judged by the God of Israel.
Tragically, the United States is leading the league in trying to divide the land of Israel.
This process was formalized under President George W. Bush who officially called for the creation of a sovereign Palestinian state, which would divide the land of Israel. “I was the first American President to call for a Palestinian state, and building support for the two-state solution has been one of the highest priorities of my Presidency,” said President Bush.
President Obama and his administration have continued the Bush policy and pushed hard for Israeli leaders to divide the land. “It is not fair that a Palestinian child cannot grow up in a state of their own,” President Obama told hundreds of Israeli students in a speech in Jerusalem. “Palestinians have a right to be free people in their own land.”
Creating a sovereign Palestinian state may sound like wisdom to many. But in the Bible, God specifically says He will judge every nation that divides up the land of Israel. Thus, speaking the truth in love, we must not encourage world leaders to take actions that will lead to the judgment of their nations. Rather, we must advise them not to go down that road.
No president or prime minister has the right to divide the land of Israel in defiance of God’s Word.
That said, the Bible also repeatedly tells Israel to love and bless and treat well those who live in their country. This is repeated over and over again in the Old Testament and the New. Just because the Bible does not allow the creation of another sovereign state in the land of Israel doesn’t mean Palestinians should be mistreated, or endangered, or oppressed in any way, shape or form. To the contrary, God loves the Palestinians. We must love the Palestinians. Israelis must love the Palestinians. Thus, Palestinians living in the West Bank should absolutely have the opportunity and freedom to run their own day-to-day affairs, their economy, education, infrastructure, transportation, health care, communications, police and courts, and so forth.
Psalm 122:6-9 — This passage reads, “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: ‘May they prosper who love you. May peace be within your walls, and prosperity within your palaces.’ For the sake of my brothers and my friends, I will now say, ‘May peace be within you.’ For the sake of the house of the Lord our God, I will seek your good.”
Clearly, people all over the world, including in America, need to:
The Lord promises to bless and “prosper” those who do.
If a nation follows these principles — if they love and bless Israel and the Jewish people, and do not divide the land of Israel, and love and pray for Jews and Arabs in Jerusalem and seek their good — then God will love and bless and show mercy to such a nation.
But if a nation violates these principles — especially chronically and consistently — then there will be a day of reckoning.
The question is: What do we want, a blessing or a curse, mercy or judgment?
Overall, most Americans are very supportive of Israel and find many ways to love and bless her, as well as the Arabs and others in Israel and the Middle East. This is good.
But there are a growing number of voices who say it is time to:
Some do so because of anti-Semitism, others out of a belief in isolationism, and others because of ignorance.
Given the high stakes, one of the things we need to do is teach people about God’s love and plan and purpose for Israel and the Jewish people, and why this matters to America. We need to help more people — including our leaders and future leaders — understand why America’s fate is inextricably linked with how we treat Israel and the Jewish people, as well as her neighbors.
I would encourage you to study Genesis 12 through 17, in particular, on your own more carefully.
You will seen how the Lord unfolds the Abrahamic Covenant, piece by piece, step by step, including the fact that this is an “everlasting covenant” (Genesis 17:7) and thus cannot be broken or abrogated, and that the Lord has given the land of Israel as an “everlasting possession” (Genesis 17:8).
Posted February 4, 2014
By Tom Hanson
Years ago my doctor put me on a daily walking routine to help maintain my physical health, so I walk at least an hour every day. I decided early on that I would use the time to not only improve and maintain my physical health, but I would use that time to also pray, which I am convinced has helped improve my spiritual health as well. I carry a prayer list in my shirt pocket that reminds me of the many individuals, groups, ministries, organizations and countries I am committed to lift up before the Lord on a regular basis. One group, for which I pray almost every day, is the same group, in which, I seldom ever see my prayers answered. That group is specifically, our elected representatives in our state capitals and in Washington, D.C.
I have been praying for many years for our representatives, state and federal, in both houses as well as our governor in Texas and the President of the USA. When praying for these politicos, I start by praying for those who are believers in Jesus Christ, but are out of fellowship with God. I pray that they will be convicted by the Holy Spirit of their rebellious heart, that they will humble themselves and pray seeking God’s forgiveness and that they will return to their first love, renewing their commitment to the Lord. I then pray that they will begin doing the jobs they were elected to do.
Next, I pray for those members of Congress who are walking daily by faith to be the encouragers those prodigal sons and daughters just mentioned who need to turn back to the Lord and perform the tasks they were elected to perform. I pray that our reps would work diligently with each other regardless their party affiliation. Then, I ask God that the result of the first two groups getting their acts together would be the light of Christ illuminating the way for those in congress who don’t know the Lord to be convicted by the Holy Spirit of sin, of righteousness and judgment. (See John 16:8). Next, I pray that the ultimate result of our national leaders being revived in their relationship with or conversion to Christ would be the beginning of the greatest revival and awakening that this nation has ever experienced.
From America, I pray, that this revival of the church and corresponding awakening of the dead in Christ to the living Lord, will move over the face of the earth until every peoples group, language, nationality, race and tongue will have been exposed to the convicting power of the Holy Spirit living in every believer, or the convicting power of the Holy Spirit drawing lost people to Christ and convicting them of sin, righteousness and judgment.
I have to confess that of late the things I hear with my ears and see with my eyes have been very discouraging. You can’t tune in to any news program, television or radio, or read any newspaper, handheld or internet, without concluding there apparently has not been one smidgen of Spiritual movement in the lives of any of our politicians, state, federal or local.
I have just finished reading “Harbinger” by Jonathan Cahn and I am convicted, more than ever, believers in Jesus Christ in America must begin to pray for a great revival to break out in the Church of Jesus Christ all over America. We must also pray for a corresponding great awakening of the dead in Christ to faith in our beloved Savior, the Son of God, the Savior of all mankind. We must pray for this nation as never before.
Perhaps I have erred in focusing my prayers so fervently on our politicians. Politicians are not our greatest problem in the USA. They are just the most visible group of people who continually impact the lives of every American with each piece of legislation they pass, resolution they make and political fiats and fiascos that come about through the presidents executive orders.
Something just came to me as I was typing the above paragraph. Although they are a very small percent of our total population, a politician’s impact on our society, families, culture through their legislation fiascos may be more far reaching than that of any other group of people in this nation.
Perhaps you are wondering why I think I need to take my prayer focus off politicians and begin to pray fervently and effectually for all the members of the Church of Jesus Christ in America. It is because I actually just looked at some polling numbers published on the internet. I found that most of the polls that show up as a hit when you type in the question: “What percentage of a churches total membership attend church on Sunday morning?” are three years old or older. Therefore they may not be as accurate as polls that could be taken today.
Looking at these Gallup polls for the 48 contiguous states from 2010, I found 43.1 % of an average churches membership attended worship services on an average Sunday. The highest percent of attendees at 49% was in the south. The lowest percent of attendees was 24% in New England.
Before I did my internet search, I wrote down these guestimates:
“On any given Sunday the percentage of members on record in a local church, here in the biblebelt, that attend the Sunday worship service is probably not more than thirty percent of the total number of actual members in the church. If you go outside of the traditional biblebelt, I suspect the percentage of member attendees to actual membership, is more like 20 percent.
I was wrong in my estimation of the actual number of a churches membership that attended church on a regular basis and I am glad I was. However, when more than fifty percent of the members of a local church are not attending church, this means that less than a majority of believers go to church. That is sad.
Mr. Cahn’s novel is presented in the form of a story and what is contained within the story is real, most of which is based on true events. One of the most compelling truths that Mr. Cahn shares, as part of the story line of his book, is that America was founded by men who desired to form a nation built on the principles and precepts of God’s Word. The goal of these men was to bring into existence a nation whose people would bring honor and glory to God and His Son through its citizenry living lives that would be more righteous than any people before them. The desired results would be that God would bless this nation more than any other nation in recorded history.
These founding fathers were so totally committed to this country being a godly, Christ centered nation, that a part of the first inauguration of the United States of its First President included a dedication service of this nation to God. This dedication service was held in a little stone church located a short distance from the Federal Building where the inauguration took place. The Nation’s Capital, at that time, was New York City.
This event was publicized and the public was implored to attend this dedication service which took place at St. Paul’s Chapel. It was held immediately after George Washington was inaugurated. Both houses of Congress, the first cabinet and other dignitaries, walked the short distance from the Federal Building to the church led by the President. Bells all over New York City rang out at the appointed time as an encouragement for the people who could not attend the dedication service to pray for God’s will to be done in and through this nation.
Before the prayer meeting began, there was a short ceremony in which America’s first president delivered a prepared speech, dedicating this New Country to the God of the Universe and imploring His continuous hand of blessings upon it. This short speech by our first President may very well turn out to be a prophetic message for this nation. However, it could also have possibly been the beginning of a Covenant with God Almighty.
Here is the part of this nation’s first president’s, first speech, and this nation’s first order of business, after the inauguration of this President. Read carefully what George Washington proclaims and see if this might very well be a bona fide covenant in the eyes of God:
“The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself hath ordained.”
Here is how one of the two main characters in Mr. Cahn’s book interprets what President Washington was saying:
“If America upholds God’s eternal standards and follows His unchanging ways, then it will be blessed with His favor…His protection…His prosperity…. But if America should depart from the ways of God, if it should disregard His eternal standards, then the smiles of heaven, the blessings of God, will be withdrawn—its prosperity, its protection, and its powers would be taken away. He’s giving a warning to the nation: The day America turns away from God will be the day that begins the removing of its blessings.”
God’s Word reveals that a plan very, very similar to this plan by America’s founders actually had been put into action once before by God Himself. The nation was Israel and God’s plan for Israel had begun with the Law of Moses.
God had given to Moses Ten Commandments for the nation of Israel to live by and through which He desired to interact with the nation. God offered the Nation of Israel a Covenant under which they would promise to obey the Commandments He had given as rules of life and He would bless them abundantly for their obedience to His rules.
The Covenant stipulated that if Israel was not faithful in being obedient to His Commandments, God would remove His hand of blessing and Israel would suffer the consequences. God actually gave Israel the choice of accepting the Covenant or rejecting it. They chose to enter into the Covenant with God, promising, "All the words which the Lord has said we will do" Ex. 24:3. The nation took an oath to obey all of God’s commandments in exchange for Gods hand of blessing being upon them. The Covenant went something like this:
God’s Part: “I will bless Israel abundantly for Her obedience to My Laws.”
Israel’s Part: “We will faithfully obey all God’s Laws and He will bless us abundantly.”
Israel, from the get-go, failed miserably at keeping her part of the Covenant. However, the problem was not with the Covenant. The problem was with Israel’s refusal to faithfully obey and do her part. Quite often Israel’s failure had to do with idolatry – turning from their God to the gods of other nations or people. God’s response was to remove His hand of blessings which usually resulted in an enemy nation taking Israel captive.
However, before God would allow any nation to run over Israel, He would first send a messenger to Israel’s leaders warning her that He was going to allow devastating consequences on the nation, if the people did not turn from their wickedness and honor their commitment to the Covenant. Israel would promise to turn back to God, and faithfully obey His Laws, but it would seldom happen. God’s leniency and mercy at any point in time was always greater than Israel’s faithfulness. Finally, God would carry through with His promise and Israel would suffer greatly at the hand of one of her enemy nations for a season.
Down through her history, Israel’s forte was her constantly being disobedient to God and being taken into captivity. She did these two things with remarkable expertise. Finally, Israel became so morally corrupt that Jews were sacrificing their children on the alters of foreign gods.
America is not Israel. America was not picked by God to take Israel’s place. God has not transferred His affections, or His hand of blessings, from Israel to America. However, God has had His hand of blessings on this nation for well over 200 years. In fact, God has been blessings this countries people long before we became a legitimate nation.
There was a covenant made with God on this continent of North America, which preceded the Covenant following the inauguration of this nation by almost one hundred and seventy years; known as the Mayflower Compact. This document created and signed by twenty zealous, religions men implored God to bless their efforts at forming a colony and inhabiting them for God’s honor and glory and the advancement of the Christian Faith.
Though not stated, I believe we can assume these men also wanted God to bless their efforts to their benefit as God fearing people desiring to form a covenanted body of people to exalt God and His Son without fear of persecution and enslavement by a dictatorial government. The Mayflower Compact reads:
"In the name of God, Amen. We, whose names are underwritten, the Loyal Subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord, King James, by the Grace of God, of England, France and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, et al. Having undertaken for the Glory of God, and Advancement of the Christian Faith, and the Honour of our King and Country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the northern parts of Virginia; do by these presents, solemnly and mutually in the Presence of God and one of another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil Body Politick, for our better Ordering and Preservation, and Furtherance of the Ends aforesaid; And by Virtue hereof to enact, constitute, and frame, such just and equal Laws, Ordinances, Acts, Constitutions and Offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the General good of the Colony; unto which we promise all due submission and obedience. In Witness whereof we have hereunto subscribed our names at Cape Cod the eleventh of November, in the Reign of our Sovereign Lord, King James of England, France and Ireland, the eighteenth, and of Scotland the fifty-fourth. Anno Domini, 1620.”
What leads us to believe that the Mayflower Compact was viewed by God as a Covenant with Him? The same thing that leads Godly, learned men of any time period in the Biblical history of man to conclude that whenever believing, God fearing men beseech God to bless their efforts, in accomplishing any mission that is in accordance with His will they can count on God’s blessing, so long as they are faithful and true to the mission and to the God whose blessings they seek.
Therefore, since it was a group of Godly men who signed the Mayflower Compact and who called upon the God of the Universe to bless their efforts, I believe this compact was a legitimate and divinely appointed Covenanted undertaking. An undertaking that ultimately lead to the creation of another legitimate and divinely appointed Covenanted undertaking immediately after the Nation of thirteen states became a reality. This Covenant spoken into existence by George Washington the first president of the USA, for all intents and purposes may have been just an addendum to the first that was signed aboard the Mayflower.
It seems the two Covenants, separately and combined, obligated the people of this Nation to honor God in their existence by living in obedience to His proclaimed mandates. These men who created and signed both documents believed that God would demonstrate His faithfulness to any nation that lived to honor and bring glory to Him. Nobody who knows the history of this nation would ever doubt or deny that this nation is the most blessed of all the nations which have every existed.
However, I am greatly saddened to say, I believe there is evidence that God’s sovereign hand of blessing is being lifted off this nation.
If this be so, what then should we do? There is only one response for a nation that has been formed to these ends: 1.) for the purposes of righteousness and godliness on the part of its citizenry; and 2.) with expectations of the blessings of God for their obedience. The people of such a nation, as I believe this nation is, must repent and turn back to God before it is too late, or suffer the consequences. If God lifts His hand of blessings off our nation, as He rightly should if we do not turn from our sins, we are doomed.
Look at the nation of Israel to see how God deals with any nation whose people have entered into Covenant with Him, but whose people do not uphold their part of the Covenant. The people of Israel as a nation ratified their Covenant with God in Ex. 24:3 and once they were settled in their respective allotments of the Holy Land, God held them accountable to live in obedience to His Law as given to Israel through Moses.
By no stretch of the imagination can it be said that Israel actually ever kept any part of their Covenant with the Lord for any length of time. And God proved Himself to be very lenient with them. Time and again He would send a prophet to warn the nation and they would reject the messenger outright. On several occasions they either: beat, stoned or killed God’s messenger.
What finally caused God to actually turn his back on the nation which has resulted in almost two thousand years of suffering and defeat for the Nation? They rejected God’s Son, their Messiah. They put Him to death on a cross. And, they are still rejecting Him today.
It is tempting to say that in many ways America is following in the footsteps of Israel. The problem with that statement is that it is a lie of the greatest magnitude. Israel’s sin is primarily rejecting their Messiah. America is further down its road on the way to hell than this. We have to confess this nation has rejected both God and His Son. We’ve taken Them out of our public schools and schools of higher learning. We are forcing our children through our public school systems to honor and embrace the gods of most every religion on earth, but Christianity and Judaism. Many public schools have already begun teaching the wonderful, finer points of that peaceful religion known as Islam. Our children are being forced to undergo brainwashing about the desirable qualities of Islam and other religions. Public schools now teach: sex education to our children, beginning about grade two, that includes homosexual and lesbian lifestyles; all religions have equal value and none should be promoted over any other; people who do violence based on their religious beliefs (or lack thereof) should be understood and not condemned; and Christians should not promote their beliefs nor values in any way in public.
Some of the branches of our military have already stopped Christians from praying and sharing anything about Jesus Christ with others in the military. Also, some branches are going to allow Muslim men to grow beards and wear turbans associated with their religion when in uniform beginning early in this coming year.
These are just the tips of the icebergs, floating the waters of life around which our families must navigate in the midst of the many storms of life. If that isn’t enough to make you despair, keep reading.
We have allowed over fifty million babies to be put to death to satisfy the whims of their mothers since 1973. We have desecrated the God ordained union of marriage between man and woman, by allowing and embracing so called marriages between persons of the same sex.
We are indifferent to the reality that 70 percent of our black babies being born in America today are born out of wedlock. They are born into a one parent family with very little hope of not replicating the world and its environment into which they are being born. In the entire recorded history of the planet, there has never been a greater voluntary abandonment of children by their fathers.
We are so blasé to the moral decadence in our country, America is going to hell in the fast lane, and it seems that very few of us really care.
Whether, you want to believe it or not, America’s founders Covenanted with God and rightly so, and we are breaking that Covenant and we are going to suffer the consequences just as Israel has over her history. The difference being, it will probably come more swiftly and with greater detriment and devastation.
Can America stay the hand of God? I believe we can. Our only hope is to get on our faces before the Lord and pray as men and women have never prayed before. We need to also come clean about our own disobedience. It isn’t only the other folks who have disobeyed the Lord. I have sinned and you have sinned. We all need to seek God’s face and forgiveness. For those of us who are believers in Jesus Christ, we know that Jesus Christ has already paid our sin debt while on the cross and we are totally forgiven for all our sins – past, present and future, when we confess. But, surely we are not such fools as to think there are no consequences for sins. Yes, there are consequences for even those sins we have confessed and God has forgiven and forgotten. If you don’t believe this, ask the Christian and non-Christian, male or female who have let their sins destroy their marriages, their families, lives and families of others. Ask those whose disobedience ended in accidents that took the lives or limbs of others. Did they receive forgiveness from God and others when they confessed their sins? Did the confession always result in people getting their lives back, marriages being saved, families being restored?
Folks, the answer to preventing this nation from being completely obliterated is for every believer in this nation to turn back to their first love. Jesus told the angels of the churches at Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea that this was exactly what these churches were to do.
How does a church turn back to its first love? It does it through each individual member bowing before God in humble contrition and adoration, confessing their sins while placing the Lord Jesus back on the throne of their individual lives.
Then, once a believer is back in fellowship with the Lord, he or she must do everything in the power of the Holy Spirit to stay that way. Don’t try to stay in fellowship with the Lord in your own power. It takes supernatural power to live in obedience to the will of God. That is why we have the Holy Spirit living in us.
Believers, we must get on our knees and faces and come clean with the Lord and stay clean and in fellowship with Him because He is worthy. Let us pray that one day soon, the Lord Jesus will come in clouds above the earth and with a shout of an Archangel and the sound of a trumpet, call His bride to His side. Therefore, let us all pray fervently, Come, Lord Jesus! O Lord, Come!
“The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. 24 My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen” 1 Cor. 16:23-24 (NKJV).
Most of us have probably heard our parents tell us we should be careful about what we ask for. As American citizens, we should probably have heeded this advice for decades. But alas, we didn't. We asked for things we didn't need, or that were dangerous for us to have, always wanting what we want, when we want it, never considering the consequences. And here we stand in 2014, on the verge of losing our nation and the very freedoms given to us by our generous God who is no longer welcome, whose name can't even be mentioned, in public places. Because America has turned her back on God, He's now turning His back on us.
So then, what does the future of America hold for 2014? We are now a month into this New Year. The holidays are history, and for me, hopefully sickness is as well. Will there even be an America at the end of this year? Without a massive revival, it seems our future will be filled with many woes. In fact, we risk God turning us over both individually, and as a nation, to our own wicked desires and ways.
America is a nation that was founded by godly people for God's glory. Oh, there are naysayers who say this isn't so, that there is no proof of this. Actually, there is tons of written proof that our nation was founded on Christian principles, including the two most recognizable documents: the Declaration of Independence, and the U.S. Constitution. But before these documents were written, there was another important founding document, the Mayflower Compact. When I was in school, history classes still taught about this document. It reads:
Mayflower Compact: 1620
Agreement Between the Settlers at New Plymouth: 1620
IN THE NAME OF GOD, AMEN. We, whose names are underwritten, the Loyal Subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord King James, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, &c. Having undertaken for the Glory of God, and Advancement of the Christian Faith, and the Honour of our King and Country, a Voyage to plant the first Colony in the northern Parts of Virginia; Do by these Presents, solemnly and mutually, in the Presence of God and one another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil Body Politick, for our better Ordering and Preservation, and Furtherance of the Ends aforesaid: And by Virtue hereof do enact, constitute, and frame, such just and equal Laws, Ordinances, Acts, Constitutions, and Officers, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general Good of the Colony; unto which we promise all due Submission and Obedience. IN WITNESS whereof we have hereunto subscribed our names at Cape-Cod the eleventh of November, in the Reign of our Sovereign Lord King James, of England, France, and Ireland, the eighteenth, and of Scotland the fifty-fourth, Anno Domini; 1620.
Amazingly, the document is very succinct. Unlike today's massive bills passed by Congress that nobody can possibly read, like the latest nearly 1600 page spending bill, the Mayflower Compact was about 200 words, including the title. It also clearly states "for the Glory of God" and the "advancement of the Christian faith" as their purpose for planting the first colony. Contrary to what our current president may believe, the Pilgrims did not come to this new land to promote Islam.
Now almost 400 years later, Christians are in the fight of our lives to preserve our faith in a nation that was founded by Christians, and for Christianity. The faith of our Founders has been abolished from most public places. Prayer and the Bible have been banished from public/government schools. The military is actively banning Christian-oriented speech and prayer among the troops, and even the pastors/chaplains. But in all of these places, Islam is being promoted. In fact, special provisions are being made for Muslims in schools and the military.
Just this past week the Washington Times reported the Pentagon will be allowing Muslim soldiers to grow facial hair and wear turbans, scarves, etc. associated with their religion. By the way...Christian soldiers can only wear crosses if they can't be seen. With Muslims, these new "allowances" are prominent against military dress.
Also to accommodate and promote Islam, Conservative Frontline reports that the president has declared all public/government schools K-12 will be teaching about the wonders of Islam, starting February 1 of this year. Fox News Radio has reported that the teaching includes instruction on the five pillars of Islam. While Islam has already been taught in some states like California, it will now be mandatory. Question: Would Congress have had the guts to pass such a law? Not on your life. The only way this can happen is by dictatorial fiat. And what has Congress done to stop it?
Sadly, an increasing amount of positive information about Islam is being placed in school textbooks, while Christianity gets less space in the same textbooks, and is not portrayed in a positive manner. Parents, how do you like the fact your kids can learn about the five pillars of Islam, but NOT the Ten Commandments from the Bible? Radical Leftists/Communists love to talk about the bogus "separation of church and state" when it involves Christianity and Jesus Christ. But any and all false religions should be allowed.
Further, the Federal Government now considers Evangelical Christians, Catholics, and Ultra-Orthodox Jews serious threats to national security. Patriotupdate.com reports about Department of Homeland Security training seminars that include teaching about domestic terrorist groups. The list of top threats:
Evangelical Christianity, Muslim Brotherhood, Ultra-Orthodox Jews, Christian Identity, Al Qaeda, Hamas, Abu Sayyam, Ku Klux Klan, Sri Ram Sene, Catholicism.
Kamane Movement / Kach, Army of God, Sunni Muslims, Nation of Islam, Jewish Defense League, Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Hutaree.
Furthermore, "Islamophobia" was listed as a form of religious extremism.
Please note that Christians rank higher on the list of terrorist groups than the Muslim Brotherhood and Al Qaeda! Why is our government targeting those of Judeo Christian belief? That's because our faith is based in the Bible and the God of Abraham. And these beliefs are contrary to the communistic lies that have been taught in our schools for decades, and the communistic regime that now rules from the highest seats of power in government. We speak Truth from God's Word, and we must be silenced.
Sadly, since the 1960's, it appears anti-God forces have been successful at silencing much of the Church. When Christians allowed prayer and the Bible to be removed from the public schools, it was the beginning of the decline of Christianity in America. An overwhelming majority of Americans were Christians, and yet, one atheist is responsible for pushing God out of schools. And from then on, Christians began believing more atheist and communist lies and propaganda, political correctness became the rule, and Christians lost increasing amounts of their light and effectiveness.
There are still millions of Americans who claim they are Christians. I fear far too many of them are compromised with and far too comfortable in this evil world. The Bible says of Christians, "You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." (Matt. 5:13-16 NIV)
Salt is a preservative. As salt, Christians are supposed to preserve the society in which we live. Dear friends, this Scripture tells us that if we have lost our "saltiness," we're basically no longer of any use to God. That thought should feel like a knife stabbing our hearts. And light dispels darkness, where evil resides. If our light has dimmed, or worse, gone out, then we are of no further use to God in dispelling evil.
Dear Christian, look around you. If you haven't seriously assessed the condition of our society in awhile, now is the time to do so. This month marks the 41st anniversary of Roe v Wade that granted women the "right" to abortion. Since that terrible Supreme Court decision, over 55 million babies have been murdered by their mothers and complicit doctors. Television, for the most part, is nothing but a cesspool of legalized pornography and foul language that teaches all forms of immorality, and mocks traditional family values and Christianity. And while homosexuals number a very small minority in America, their lewd behavior and lifestyles are shoved in our faces every which way – ad nauseam.
Again, salt and light have lost their effectiveness, and now darkness reigns. We who are called by the name of Jesus are responsible. We have failed to do our part either from complacency, or compromise with the world. Others have become afraid to boldly stand for their views – and their God. Regardless of our reasons, if we don't speak truth about our God and His Word to a dark, lost world, we deny Him. Accordingly, Jesus said that if we deny Him before men, He will deny us before the Father. (Matt. 10: 33) Therein is the problem.
Dear fellow Americans, individually and collectively as a nation, we have turned our backs on God. Consequently, He is turning His back on us and increasingly removing His hand of protection and blessing. We have broken His commandments and gone our own way. We have preferred darkness over light. And now we are reaping what we have sown.
What hope do we have? Can our course be reversed? Only God knows the answers. Let's pray we haven't gone too far. And may all Christians who read these words fall upon their knees in repentance for our personal sins, and those of our nation. To anyone willing to hear....
by Tom Hanson
I came to the conclusion when I was 17 years old, although I had been raised and baptized in a Baptist church, that I wanted nothing to do with organized religion, its adherents or the God in which they professed to believe. It wasn't so much that I didn't believe in God or the teachings of the bible, it was that I could more readily embrace a life of hedonistic living without having to deal with the guilt that moral man would attached there unto. About the same time that I decided to turn my back on any semblance of organized religion and began to profess my atheist world view, I became aware of this empty feeling inside of me that for the next 17 years I tried to stuff full of pleasurable things.
After I was discharged from the Army in June 1965. I went to work for Xerox where I soon began to realize the rewards for hard work and faithfulness to the Corporation. Dianne and I were married in 1968 and, though she had been raised as a Presbyterian, she and I worked through our initial problems with my atheism and we had a good marriage. I was promoted into management in '69, but after a year I knew my heart was not in it, so I asked to return to being a Tech Rep and was given an opportunity to move away from the metropolitan area of Dallas/Ft. Worth to a rural setting south east of Dallas covering about nine counties. I enjoyed being a Tech Rep even more the second time around, our marriage continue to prosper, and our family continued to grow. Because of my dedication to hard work and zeal for the company, Dianne and I were being rewarded with very nice, all expense paid trips to places like The Virgin Islands, Jamaica, Acapulco et cetera. Life was good, we built a home on the lake, enjoyed fishing almost every afternoon after work, took our friends skiing every weekend, kept winning those nice trips. It seemed everything was going our way. Yet, that hollow space was still there inside, growing larger all the while.
In January of 1975 I came home from spending a week in Jackson, Mississippi attending a school for Xerox to find everyone in my family, accept our infant son Jason, horrendously sick with some kind of virus. Dianne and our oldest son David though very sick were not nearly as sick as our middle son Ben. I remember very vividly walking into my and Dianne's bedroom where she and Ben were, and seeing the look of death on my sons face,. Suddenly, I was convinced that we were going to lose our middle son. This was early evening and I recall the next few hours being a blur as Dianne explained as best she could how this virus had come on the family suddenly with Ben being the sickest. How she had taken he and David to the pediatrician who sent her home with a prescription and instructions to let the virus run its course. Then she came down with the virus and it had so debilitated her that all she could think of was to put Jason in the care of a neighbor while she, David and Ben got better and that Ben's condition had gotten so much worse so quickly that she was helpless to even think clearly about what to do.
I remember that night going into our guests bedroom and lying down in a confusing swirl of disconnected thoughts, trying to understand what was happening to my family. How would I ever live through the loss of my middle son? Why wasn't my philosophy of life working? Wasn't it I who proclaimed that with mans superior intellect and abilities nothing was impossible for mankind to do? Yet, here was I, a man helpless to help his son, whom he was convinced was dying. In the midst of all those confusing, worrisome thoughts I, the atheist, attempted to pray to the God whom he far so long had said did not exist. I said something like, "God, I have proclaimed to the world that you do not exist. But, if you do, and if you answer prayer then please don't let my son Ben die and give me the faith to believe in you." When I closed my eyes in sleep that night I had never felt so hopeless and helpless in all my life. That hole inside of me had become a black hole in my heart into which it seemed my whole universe was going to be devoured.
Over the next few days David and Dianne and then Ben got over their illness and life was back to normal again. Perhaps a week had gone by when I decided to try reading through the Bible, using a Living Bible that Dianne's mom and dad had given us a Christmas or two earlier. At about the same time I insisted that Dianne start taking the boys to church because they needed some foundational teaching to help them grow up knowing right from wrong. Of course as soon as they visited the closest Baptist church, recommended by one of our neighbors, the pastor insisted on visiting with us in our home. So, every Friday night for about three or four weeks the pastor of the 1st Baptist Church of Bullard paid me a visit. Boy did I enjoy that. Having by now read about four or five books into the old testament, I loved pointing out to the preacher what low down, lying, cheating people Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and others that this God of the Jew and Christian had chosen to lead his people, the Jew. The pastor would just smile, refuse the beer that I always offered, and never once seemed offended that I was attacking his biblical hero's. By this time I was probably convinced that God was real but aloof and uninvolved in the lives of present day earthlings.
Sometime in February a neighbor gave me a book titled, "Late Great Planet Earth" by Hal Lindsey and since he told me it was based on things the Bible said were going to take place in the future. I figured it might be a good read, seeing how I was already half way through the old testament. By the time I finished the book, I was ready to read more about what this guy Lindsey, and others who were called "Evangelicals" had ‘discovered' in the bible. Little did I know that down through the corridors of recorded time there has always been those who marched in step with the cadence called by the author of The Book.
In March, another neighbor invited me and my family to attend a special series of meetings at the Presbyterian Church he attended. They called this week of events a Missions Conference but I had no idea what a missions conference was, only that there would be missionaries from different parts of the world in attendance, along with special music and speakers.
The meetings started on a Sunday morning so I agreed to take Dianne and the boys just that one time. A missionary family, the Les Thompson's, from Columbia were there - father, mother and four boys, ages about 8 thru 15, who played the Swiss bells. I was surprised that our whole family enjoyed them. The speaker was an elderly evangelist, who delighted those in church that morning with his home spun humor while sharing about his years of traveling the world over preaching.
Because we had so enjoyed the family playing the Swiss bells. We went back to the meeting that night. The Thompson family thrilled the audience with their skills and abilities to get sounds out of bells that I didn't know could emanate from brass. As the speaker began reading the text for his sermon, a passage of scripture from the 1st Chapter of the Book of Romans, I saw my life for the previous 17 years played out in living color before my eyes. The words he was reading went straight as an arrow to my heart and I knew that God had written those words just for me. This by the way was my first experience at personalizing scripture.
For since the creation of the world God's invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that Tom Hanson is without excuse, because, although he knew God, Tom did not glorify Him as God, nor was he thankful. In fact, Tom became futile in his thoughts, and his foolish heart was darkened. Professing to be wise, Tom became a fool and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image of corruptible man.... Therefore God gave Tom Hanson over to uncleanness in the lusts of his heart, to dishonor his body and destroy his mind. Tom exchanged the truth of God for the lie and served himself and his passions rather than the Creator.
I had never been so convicted about anything the way I was convicted that night while sitting there in that pew listening to the preacher describe Tom Hanson to a "T". I was convicted that God was real, that His son had come to earth to die for me and that I was lost and needed a Savior. After the service, I went back to our lake front home, went out on my pier, got on my knees and I told God that I was sick and tired of running my own life. I ask Him to forgive me for all the sorry, rotten, sinful things I had done in my life and that I wanted Jesus Christ His Son to take control of my life and make me the man He wanted me to be. I knew, but I am not sure if it was from my child hood rearing in a Baptist church or from the reading that I had done the previous few nonths, that God had so loved mankind that He had sent His Son the Lord Jesus Christ to die on a cross as a sin offering for me; That all I had to do to become a child of his and escape the death penalty for my rebellious living was to place my trust in His Son. As I knelt there on that pier, in my minds eye, I could see God seated in a large chair of some sort and Jesus His Son was seated to his right and though there was nothing distinguishable about their facial features, I knew who it was who was looking at me with all the love and compassion anyone had ever longed for and though they never said a word to me, the hole in my heart was suddenly filled.
When I stood up, I knew something special had happened. I didn't know what, but as I walked back to the house I felt totally free and clean as if the weight of the whole world had been lifted off my shoulders. My heart for the first time, as far back as I could remember, was full.
If you are not certain, without a doubt, where you will spend eternity, please go click on -The Way, The Truth, The Life in the Main Menu or Contac me through the Contact
Tommy E. Hanson