Sunday, November 30, 2008

A Sunday Prayer

Please join me today in praying for the people of India in the midst of their great tragedy. Pray that God will use this situation to draw many to Himself, and away from false gods.

Pray also that the ones who are responsible for the attacks (the ones who ultimately planned it and ordered it done) will be caught and brought to swift justice.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Here's Another View . . .

This evening, I am in the mind to write a little love letter to the terrorists out there. My last post was similar, but I don't think I was graphic or clear enough in my attempt at communicating just how disgusted I am at their murderous ways. I hope they don't forget that America is not Europe. We still execute here.

In the last post, the electric chair shot was taken at the Cook County Jail in Chicago, back in the days when they were allowed to execute there. In Illinois, the death penalty statute at the time permitted counties with populations in excess of one million to carry out their own executions. Chicago is in Cook County, therefore they qualified. The last execution by electric chair in Illinois actually took place at the Cook County Jail in 1962. Cop killer James Dukes was the one who got fried.

Yes, that was the chair pictured in my last post. The shot was taken from the side, unfortunately without someone strapped in. In case the side view wasn't sufficient, you terrorists, take a gander at the photo in today's post. This photo is of the electric chair once used -- and now stored -- at Stateville Prison near Joliet. They're keeping it on ice just in case it should be needed again. There's a second one in storage also, once used at Menard State Prison near Chester. While Illinois now uses lethal injection, there is a proviso to bring these chairs out of mothballs if necessary. They're waiting for you terrorists, arms wide open.

Now, for the terrorists' contemplation. Imagine the brine-soaked sponge and electrode strapped to your shaved skull, perhaps with a bit of conducting jelly to aid passage of the current.

Next, imagine the second electrode strapped with another brine-soaked sponge to your right leg. Some states have used electrodes on both legs.

The current used varies from state to state. In Virginia, it averages about 1,800 volts. Here in Illinois, when we use the chair, we do it right. We use about 2,400 volts, in at least two or three cycles. We want to be sure you're cooked done.

Of course, things don't have to be this way. You could repent of your sins and turn your back on terrorism. Trust me, if you choose terrorism and what you think is martyrdom, you won't get 72 virgins. You'll be in Hell instantaneously after death. If you end up going to the chair, you'll burn twice. Once for a couple of voltage cycles, and then in eternity, way down deep in the Lake of Fire.

My Bible says that God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked. I know that I am supposed to feel the same way as His disciple, but it's difficult. Your murderous acts are so despicable. Right now, I feel very little sympathy for you, except in wonderment how you could possibly be so deceived in believing that murder will merit you heaven. You fools. You stupid, stupid fools.

Lord, have mercy on them . . . and on me. It's been said often enough, and it's true. "But for the grace of God go I."

Friday, November 28, 2008

Muslim Terrorists . . . Grrrrrr!

For the record, not just Muslim terrorists. Any kind of terrorists. The incident in Mumbai (Bombay) India is revolting. Rather than caving in to these beasts, this incident should only serve to make lawful authority in each nation more resolute to hunt these animals down. And once they're caught . . .

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Be Thankful!

The Seventh Sola is taking a brief hiatus for Thanksgiving. So let me wish you and yours a wonderful day with family and friends, and remember to be thankful. Here in the United States, we are blessed with so much. It's sad to think that we might have to lose it all to be reminded of just how much we have been blessed.

And for believers, there is no excuse for not being thankful.

. . . Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful (Colossians 3:15).

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Reb Bradley: A Nation of Liberal Crybabies

WorldNetDaily has been advertising a new book by author Reb Bradley called Born Liberal, Raised Right: How to Rescue America from Moral Decline – One Family at a Time. In it, he makes a pretty convincing case about why our nation is in such straits. He was on Fox and Friends this morning to chat about it. In essence, we can thank liberals for the way our nation is turning into a country of whiny crybabies who are incapable of governing themselves. Here's an excerpt from the WND article on this book . . .

America is increasingly lacking in-self control, says Bradley. He says adults no longer restrain themselves from destructive actions and behaviors, because they have not been taught to do so as children.

"A few decades ago, people were just as human as we are in this decade," he writes. "Like us, they got angry, they lusted, they coveted, and they drowned their grief by one means or another. But in one important way, they were different from us – they had greater self-control. Because they were more self-restraining, they did not allow themselves to be ruled by their anger; hence the murder rate was markedly less. They lusted, but they had greater sexual self-restraint, so had sexual contact with fewer people and contracted fewer STDs. They coveted other people's money and possessions, but they had the ability to not act on their covetousness; hence fewer were compelled to steal. In the last 40 years we have lost the virtue of self-control. No longer is our society populated by individuals who can restrain or 'govern' themselves. To lack the capacity to control one's urges or passions is to lack what our nation's Founders called personal 'self-government.'"

Bradley contends that liberalism is the natural condition of the human heart and for people to be capable of self-government, they must be trained against their own nature.

"In this age of technology, one might say that liberalism is our 'default' operating condition," he writes. "Throughout our childhoods, our parents must work hard and change our settings to keep us from operating in our default mode. If parents are successful, we enter adulthood with our new settings fully locked in. Left untrained, all children would grow up liberal in their outlook."

"Liberals are merely inadequately trained children who grew up and now lead using principles they gleaned from their upbringing," he says.

All people are born liberal, Bradley writes, meaning they are ruled first by their emotions and passions.

"We come into the world determined to survive, and we vehemently express ourselves to get what we need: 'Waaa!' and Momma feeds us," he writes. "'Waaa!' and our diaper is changed' 'Waaa!' and we are put down for a nap. As infants, our strong will can keep us comfortable and alive – the more outspoken we are, the more our needs are met. However, as we start to grow, we no longer cry for our necessities – we crave pleasure, too."

These ideas are not really new, explains Bradley. They are just in need of rediscovery.

I couldn't have said it better myself. Interesting how the liberal mindset and instinct seem to go hand in hand with an unrestrained sin nature.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

A Word from Donald Grey Barnhouse

While doing my study on Romans, I found this wonderful quote from the late Bible expositor and commentator Donald Grey Barnhouse. This is a wonderful example of "he being dead still speaks."

“God will give a man brains to smelt iron and make a hammer head and nails. God will grow a tree and give man strength to cut it down and brains to fashion a hammer handle from its wood. And when man has the hammer and the nails, God will put out His hand and let man drive nails through it, and place Him on a cross in the supreme manifestation that men are without excuse.”

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Arrrrgh! Media!

This evening on The Fox Report, anchor Julie Banderas was interviewing former Mondale campaign manager Bob Beckel on the forming Obama Cabinet. In responding to a question about the supposed "centrist" nature of Obama's picks, Beckel said that, prior to Bill Clinton, there hadn't been a Democratic administration in 30 years.

Excuse me?

Let's count back. Bill Clinton. George H.W. Bush. Ronald Reagan. Jimmy Carter. . .

Jimmy Carter? Between Carter's 1977 election and Clinton's inauguration in 1993, that's 15 years. Not 30.

Before Carter, we had Gerald Ford, and Richard Nixon before him. And Democrat Lyndon Johnson before him.

I would think there ought to be some minimum knowledge of history out there, don't you?


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Reining In the Courts

On my radio program as well as in other forums, I have long advocated reining in the federal courts because of the way they have usurped authority and far exceeded their proper constitutional role. Among the ways this can be done is by Congress exercising its constitutional power to restrict the courts' jurisdiction.

This linked article was written by former Attorney General Ed Meese for the Hoover Institution. I think his analysis and prescriptions to solve the courts problem is spot on. It is far beyond time to get control of this runaway train, especially because the left uses the judiciary to accomplish what it cannot accomplish legislatively.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

What Is a Cult?

With yesterday's anniversary of the Jonestown massacre in Guyana, I thought it would be a good idea to review the controversial subject of cults. For starters, I will post the definition of "cult" we use at the Institute for Christian Apologetics. And that is . . .

Two or more people who have a real or imaginary need they are trying to meet or fulfill by believing that which is false about the Person and work of the biblical Jesus Christ."

On the surface, that seems like a very broad definition. One reason we did it that way was because of the litigiousness of today's society. I'd love to see a judge rule on that definition. But there are other reasons that we'll highlight later.

I am limited on time today, so I will leave it here for now. Discuss at will.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Happy Birthday, Mickey!

Every now and then, we need a break from the cares of this life. So today, let's all wish a happy 80th birthday to Mickey Mouse. Although I can't get by without at least one editorial comment. If Walt Disney were alive, and Mickey were real, I have a hunch they both would be headed to the offices at Disney with willow switches in hand.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Cheers for Interstate Batteries

In the past several years, there has been a growing outcry aimed at businesses over the content of their advertising. Quite a bit of the outcry and complaint is justified. Have you watched the Super Bowl much since Janet Jackson's little "foip" incident? Those aren't the only ads out there that "push the envelope." Many are -- quite frankly -- disgusting.

But today, I want to give praise where praise is due. I want to give a shout out to Interstate Batteries.

How many companies these days spend money to spread the Gospel so openly? I personally think Interstate Batteries' "God's Love" ads are refreshing, and done in a very winsome way. Yes, I am sure the content could be theologically deeper, but I am still thankful. They at least can get people talking about the issue if nothing else.

They also provide the opportunity for each one of us to talk about it at the water cooler if and when it gets mentioned. Hey, maybe we can even mention it.

Anyway, kudos to Interstate Batteries. And here's hoping more Christian-owned businesses follow their lead.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A Chilling Parallel

As much as I love Ronald Reagan, the previous post today is bumpable in light of what I just discovered in my study for tomorrow's Bible class. I just had to share it because of the obvious parallels for today.

Take a gander at this statement from the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia. The subject is what befell the Roman Republic, ending up in dictatorship . . .

Inability of either aristocracy or democracy to hold equilibrium. Previous events had proved that a narrow, exclusive aristocracy was incapable of good government because of its selfishness and disregard for the rights of lower classes.

The heterogeneous population of later Rome was not disciplined to obey or to initiate just government when it seized power. This anarchy in the body politic opened the way to usurpation by individuals. No form of free popular government could live under such conditions.

Caesar said of the republic that it was “a name without any substance.” The law courts shared in the general corruption. The judicia became a prey to party interests. It succumbed to bribery and became the agent of oppression and injustice. Justice for all, and especially for conquered peoples, was impossible.

Bribery and candidates in arms prevented the proper functioning of elective assemblies. The whole people had become incapable of self-government, and were willing -- almost glad -- to be relieved of the necessity, even though this favored despotic authority.

Chilling, isn't it?

Quotes from the Gipper . . .

I'm a bit under the weather today, plus have lots to do for Sunday school tomorrow. In lieu of a post from me today, I thought we'd take a walk down memory lane with the late, great Ronald Reagan. Don't you wish we still had him with us?

'Here's my strategy on the Cold War: We win, they lose.'

'The most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the government and I'm here to help.'

'The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they're ignorant; it's just that they know so much that isn't so.'

'Of the four wars in my lifetime, none came about because the U.S. was too strong.'

'I have wondered at times about what the Ten Commandments would have looked like if Moses had run them through the U.S. Congress.'

'The taxpayer: That's someone who works for the federal government but doesn't have to take the civil service examination.'

'Government is like a baby: An alimentary canal with a big appetite at one end and no sense of responsibility at the other.'

'The nearest thing to eternal life we will ever see on this earth is a government program.'

'It has been said that politics is the second oldest profession. I have learned that it bears a striking resemblance to the first.'

'Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.'

'Politics is not a bad profession. If you succeed, there are many rewards; if you disgrace yourself, you can always write a book.'

'No arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is as formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women.'

'If we ever forget that we're one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under.'

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Obama's "Mandatory" Youth and Civilian Force?

Please read this WND article and tell me I'm dreaming. I am sure that the photo I chose for this post will no doubt cause controversy, but I'm trying to make a point here. I think people had best listen.

In America, parents are the ones to decide their children's education and activities, not the government. I think young people and old people alike should decide for themselves what they're going to do in life, what they're going to think and believe, and how they will serve their fellow man. The government has no right to mandate any such kind of service. It reminds me of the government-mandated "subbotniks" in the former Soviet Union, or worse yet, re-education camps for people who didn't think the way the government thought they ought to think.

Such "mandatory" training etc. might start out innocuously enough, but will it end as innocuously? A very good question. All we have to go on is the ideology of those advocating this kind of thing. It's not the Boy Scouts.

Of course, the media will gloss this over even though it's right out of the horses' mouth. Most people will look at you with glazed eyes and think you're a conspiracy nut. Obama and Rahm Emanuel could say it live on national television, and people would insist that they didn't say it. Down the Orwellian "memory hole" it goes.

I've said it before, and I'll keep saying it until proven wrong. This nation's voters asked for it, and boy, are they going to get it!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Prediction of Obama "Dictatorship?"

We've discussed Barack Obama's apparent sympathies for Marxism on this blog, as have many other blogs and media. Now we get this. And from a Georgia Congressman, no less.

Fascism. Socialism. Marxism. Lots of labels. In a nutshell, they're all horrible.

It's interesting that we look at Hitler and the Nazis, calling them "right wing." But when you look at what "Nazi" stands for, it's "national socialism." Hitler railed against the communists, but really the only difference between them was that Hitler did allow for private industry under government constraint. The average Joe was in bondage and terror. Communism -- statists that they are -- also had a lust for killing as many people as possible. In the end, does the label matter if the end result is the same -- American citizens losing their freedom and their country?

I honestly don't know what Barack Obama and his supporters will do. I hope all of this is just the usual "awfulizing" by interested parties. Perhaps -- I hope -- that Obama will indeed govern from the center. But I have my doubts, if only because of the statements made by Obama and his supporters in their own writings and in public. If only because I have studied Marxists and radical socialists, and understand their modus operandi.

On the other end of the spectrum, we hear comparisons with Hitler along with the usual howls of outrage. But there is a historical picture to look at here. Hitler won in a democratic election with a minority of the vote. He announced ahead of time what he planned to do in "Mein Kampf," but no one paid attention.

Let's face it. Populaces can be very, very mind-numbed, ignorant and stupid. The term "bread and circuses" has a meaning.

If the worst is true about Obama and his incoming administration, will they get away with it? Will the moderates within and outside of his administration in the Democratic Party oppose such moves? Will the Republicans and independents have enough of a backbone to stand in opposition?

What about the rest of us? Should there be a real meltdown in this country, and the government -- of whatever stripe or political party -- tries to finally trash the Constitution and impose a dictatorship, is there enough of the Spirit of 1776 left in the people of this nation to oppose it? I don't know. I doubt it, for several reasons.

I'll explain in another post. For now, pray for America.

Late addendum: Tonight on Fox News' "Special Report," anchor Brit Hume referred to the above story and suggested that the Congressman was part of "Obama Derangement Syndrome," much as there was a "Bush Derangement Syndrome" on the left. I like Brit, so I find his remark unfortunate. I would remind him that if there are concerns about Obama's ultimate political philosophy, the seeds of the concern are in Obama's own writings, statements, history and associates. I would refer him to dig around in there for a while, and then reassess things.

There might well be a "derangement syndrome" with some eventually, especially if the concerns are proven groundless. But until we reach that point, I'd say the jury is out.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Romans - God's Perfect Plan of Redemption

I have just begun a teaching series on the book of Romans for a Sunday school class at my church. I'm sure I'll be posting tidbits here and there as we go through this foundational letter from the Apostle Paul. In the meantime, I really love this verse found in Chapter I . . .

For I am not ashamed of the Gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes . . . (Romans 1:16).

Somehow, I think this verse will become very, very relevant to true Christians in the days ahead. It's hard to imagine being ashamed of the Gospel at the moment, but as pressure from an unbelieving, hostile culture steps up pressure against the church here in North America, I wonder how many will shine brightly, and how many will hide their light under a bushel?

It remains to be seen.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Another Episcopal Diocese Bolts the Communion

It appears there's been yet another defection in the Anglican Communion. This time, it's the diocese in Quincy, Illinois. The reason, of course, is the growing apostasy of the Episcopal Church, which is the U.S. arm of the Anglican Communion. The chief reason this controversy has erupted is the decision to allow an openly homosexual bishop to remain in office.

I note with a grim chuckle that the head of the Episcopal Church, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, said she "laments the departure." She doesn't lament it enough to repent, and the rest of the Anglican Communion doesn't appear to lament the schism enough to repent. And because of their incessant inclination to give the middle finger to Scripture, this schism will continue to widen as more Bible-believing Anglicans and Episopalians leave for more orthodox ground.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Homosexuals on a Rampage

I knew it was only a matter of time.

Since the election of Barack Obama to the presidency this past Tuesday, there have been a growing number of homosexual threats aimed at anyone who opposes homosexual marriage, especially churches and other religious groups. Some of the hate was unleashed even before the election.

One rather vile liberal radio host named Charles Karel Bouley was caught on tape unleashing a profanity-laced diatribe calling for the death of Joe the Plumber. Joe didn't even say anything about gay marriage, but his backing of John McCain was enough, as McCain stands for traditional marriage.

Now that the election is over, the venom is escalating. Today we heard about homosexual activists mounting protests outside of Mormon temples because the Mormons backed the ban. The homosexual lobby is calling for investigations into churches who oppose homosexuality on moral grounds, as well as calling for the revocation of churches' tax-exempt status. But it gets worse. Leftist and gay blogs are rife with obscenities and threats of actual violence against Christians, or any other religious group that stands in their way.

Such violence is not unprecedented. Shall we recall the scene in Sodom? Let's go back in time and read the Genesis account . . .

Now the two angels came to Sodom in the evening as Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground. And he said, “Now behold, my lords, please turn aside into your servant’s house, and spend the night, and wash your feet; then you may rise early and go on your way.” They said however, “No, but we shall spend the night in the square.” Yet he urged them strongly, so they turned aside to him and entered his house; and he prepared a feast for them, and baked unleavened bread, and they ate. Before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom, surrounded the house, both young and old, all the people from every quarter; and they called to Lot and said to him, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us that we may have relations with them.” But Lot went out to them at the doorway, and shut the door behind him, and said, “Please, my brothers, do not act wickedly. “Now behold, I have two daughters who have not had relations with man; please let me bring them out to you, and do to them whatever you like; only do nothing to these men, inasmuch as they have come under the shelter of my roof.” But they said, “Stand aside.” Furthermore, they said, “This one came in as an alien, and already he is acting like a judge; now we will treat you worse than them.” So they pressed hard against Lot and came near to break the door. But the men reached out their hands and brought Lot into the house with them, and shut the door. They struck the men who were at the doorway of the house with blindness, both small and great, so that they wearied themselves trying to find the doorway. Then the two men said to Lot, “Whom else have you here? A son-in-law, and your sons, and your daughters, and whomever you have in the city, bring them out of the place; for we are about to destroy this place, because their outcry has become so great before the LORD that the LORD has sent us to destroy it.”

Both Old and New Testaments declare that homosexuality is a grave sin. The word "abomination" is used -- a very severe term. Homosexuality has been viewed as a moral evil in most societies throughout history. The problem we have today is that our society no longer has the moxie to oppose homosexual behavior on moral grounds. Many politicians and secular conservative groups who oppose such marriages make all sorts of dance steps around the issue. They say it's bad for children or harmful to traditional marriage. They'll hem and haw, or obfuscate. Or they'll just say they oppose the idea without any articulation of why. But the one thing they won't do is call it what it is -- immoral and evil. Once you surrender moral authority and the moral argument, you've surrendered the very thing that buttresses your opposition.

I am all for people holding politicians accountable on this issue, and being active politically to stand for what we believe in. But that's not enough. It's not even the main thing we as Christians should do. Our churches need to thunder the Word of God from the pulpit again. We need to begin getting angry, yet without sin. The Gospel, of course, is the ultimate solution to any social ill. Giving in to homosexual demands is not showing them love, as some misguided Christians believe. They need to be lovingly confronted with truth.

By all means, show a Christian witness to homosexuals. Be kind and polite. But don't compromise the truth as you endeavor to show Christian love. Sometimes love must be tough. Prophets call people to repentance out of love. It's the most loving thing you can do, because judgment is coming to those practicing this kind of immoral behavior.

On the political end, Christian citizens still have rights. We must remind our politicians who's ultimately in charge. And that goes for the White House, Congress, state and local governments, state and federal courts, school boards, college boards of trustees and all the way down the line. Homosexuals are a tiny minority, and their conduct is not a civil right. As Alan Keyes once said, "you do not have the right to do what is wrong." They have no right to force their behavior on society. And that brings me to my final concern.

Handling the Violence

I am afraid that the homosexual lobby feels cocky enough now to begin getting physical with people, just as bullies intimidate their targets on the playground. You don't respond to a bully by being Caspar Milquetoast.

Remember when gay activists invaded a Catholic church in New York some time back? They desecrated the host and did a number of other outrageous things during a worship service. Why didn't the men of the church get up and escort those vile thugs out of the building, by force if necessary?

Don't cite "turning the other cheek" to me either. Self-defense is permissible, as is protecting your loved ones and your property. A church is a public place to some extent, but it is also private property like a business. Churches have the right to protect their property, and order people off of it if they're behaving in an untoward way. By all means, call the police if you must and file a complaint, but if a protest turns violent, there isn't time to call 911 before someone gets hurt. The men in the church should act like men and deal with the threat.

What if they start harassing us at our homes, or -- God forbid -- even breaking and entering with the intent to do harm to us and our families? It can happen, especially if they feel emboldened by the recent political change in Washington.

If someone invades my home, it's a criminal act of violence. I can guarantee you that the invader would be greeted by the business end of a shotgun. Then I'll call the police and explain what happened. The long and short of it is, this kind of thing must get nipped in the bud now before it escalates any further.

Unfortunately, the election of Barack Obama and giving large majorities to the left in Congress will have serious consequences on this issue and many others. If you think you've got problems now, just wait. They're already arresting pastors in Scandinavia and even in Canada for taking a stand and speaking out against homosexuality.

The jackboots could well come marching up to your door next.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Socialism Is Still Bad News

NOTE: The following article is from K-House Ministries (Chuck Missler).

Most Americans might not really appreciate this, but the U.S. Constitution does not entitle anybody to health insurance.

It's true.

The Constitution does not require Congress to take money from those Americans who possess more and hand it over to those with less. It doesn’t even encourage Congress to subsidize farmers or pay for prescription medications. It just doesn't.

In Article I Section 8, the Constitution does say:

"The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States…"

It goes on to talk about securing patents for scientists and establishing postal offices and roads and supporting armies and maintaining a navy. It says nothing about feeding all the downtrodden. There were plenty of poor people back in the days of the Founders, and they did not once mention using taxes to feed 'em. Apparently, providing for the general Welfare did include maintaining roads and hiring judges and keeping the peace, and did not include buying tuna fish for single moms.

Does that mean we should let the poor starve to death? Should we leave our grandparents without support or health care? Of course not. It just was never supposed to be the federal government's job to take care of these things. Here's why:

- Congress is not an industry. It does not produce anything that can be sold. It must take money from the people in order to pay for anything.

- Governments are by nature wasteful. It's easy to overspend money when the funds come from somebody else’s hard work.

- Governments are run by imperfect humans and are therefore subject to mismanagement. For this reason, it is best to keep them small and easily managed, with very specified responsibilities.

- Governments are run by imperfect humans and are therefore subject to corruption. For this reason, it is best to keep them out of trouble by limiting their power. (Lobbyists and special interest groups could just go home were Congress kept within its constitutional limits.)

- Bigger government means more bureaucracy, more government fingers in private lives, and less liberty.

Socialism is corrupt by nature. As soon as Congress started taking money from taxpayers to give it to somebody else, the whole idea of private property was compromised. My property is not really mine if the government officials can stick me in jail for not giving some of it to them.

As George Mason University economics professor Walter E. Williams wrote recently:

"Whatever Congress wishes to give, it has to first take other people's money. Thus, at the root of the welfare state is the immorality of intimidation, threats and coercion backed up with the threat of violence by the agents of the U.S. Congress. In order for Congress to do what some Americans deem as good, it must first do evil. It must do that which if done privately would mean a jail sentence; namely, take the property of one American to give to another."

But...if the federal government did not take care of poverty, of health care, of the elderly, then who would do it! Who would take care of all these things that need serious attention?

We would, of course. We the people.

We are caring for people every day in communities all across this great nation without any government involvement. Unfortunately, we Americans have gotten so spoiled, we're in danger of losing the ability to properly govern ourselves. We think that "freedom" means license to do whatever we want to do. We think that "general welfare" means adding on to that massive government feeding trough. As we have stopped obeying God's Word and controlling ourselves, as we have gone lax in caring for our own families, young and old, we have found ourselves in an increasingly deep hole, surrounded by a growing number of government officials, along with red tape and high taxes, and... the poor still with us.

Let's get back to taking responsibility for ourselves, to doing what is right ourselves, and maybe we will find the federal government shrinking as a natural result.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Now It Begins . . .

Therefore God gave them over . . . (Romans 1:24).

I will have more to say in the next few days over the likely consequences of Barack Obama capturing the White House Tuesday. These consequences are even more likely given Democratic gains in Congress. Scripture tells us we are supposed to pray for our leaders, and we'd better begin doing it now. I believe that my country has just made a mistake of monumental proportions.

I remember the late Peter Jennings of ABC News sniffing with disdain when the GOP won control of Congress for the first time in decades in 1994. (I'm sure he'd be celebrating now, along with the rest of the liberal media) He said that the country had thrown a temper tantrum. This was much more than a tantrum. It was more like going postal. You wanted change, America. You're going to get more than you bargained for.

I think there are many ways to analyze what happened, and I intend to do that in posts to come. There are several factors that contributed to Obama's win, not the least of which are several key missteps by Republicans. Yes, the Republicans bear a good chunk of the blame. Now they've exiled themselves from the political wilderness for who knows how long. Who knows if they'll have the opportunity to even recover given what's likely coming on this nation.

As an aside, did anyone see the AP story yesterday with the headline, "World Hopes for a Less Arrogant America?" One portion of the story said, "In much of the Islamic world, Muslims expressed hope that the U.S. would seek compromise rather than confrontation." One of the quotes in that section came from the foreign minister of Malaysia, who said, "I hope Obama wins because of the need of the world to see the U.S. represent a more cosmopolitan or universal political attitude."

Cosmopolitan?!? That takes a lot of cheek considering it comes from a part of the world where women are treated like chattels and Christians undergo severe persecution. We all know how the Muslim world is known for its forbearance and tolerance, don't we?

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

No Matter Who Wins the Election . . .

1. The Bible will still have all the answers.

2. Prayer will still work.

3. The Holy Spirit will still move.

4. God will still inhabit the praises of His people.

5. There will still be God-anointed teaching and preaching.

6. There will still be singing of praise to God.

7. God will still pour out blessings upon His people.

8. There will still be room at the Cross.

9. Jesus will still love you.

10. Jesus will still save the lost when they come to Him..

God has approved this message!

Sent to me via email this morning. Good stuff!

Election Day . . . Vote!

Well, it's D-Day. Or should I say "V-Day?" I'm over my cynicism, at least for the next 24 hours or so. Despite my enjoyment of Tony Banks' witty lyrics yesterday, I do believe that every American should exercise their civic responsibility and vote. I have no idea what the outcome will be, but I do know the One who is in charge, and it's not Barack Obama or John McCain. It's our sovereign God.

It is He who changes the times and the epochs; He removes kings and establishes kings; He gives wisdom to wise men And knowledge to men of understanding (Daniel 2:21).

I'll have more to say in a day or two on the election and its aftermath. No matter who wins, there will be a lot of thinking and praying to do.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Election Wisdom from Tony Banks

Whenever we enter a political season, I really have to fight my cynical side. But from time to time, I have to give in to it.

These wonderful lyrics are by Genesis keyboardist Tony Banks. Enjoy!

(Tony Banks/Nik Kershaw)

They're kissing babies and telling me lies
They're taking over my television
They're making noises that sound so wise
Trying to influence my decision

Rituals old fashioned
With speeches so proud and passionate
Hope reigns, fears rule
I may be crazy but I'm not such a fool
No such fool

Red day on blue street
And this world promises everything
Old shoes on new feet
Again nothing changes
Red day on blue street

Here comes a man with a face so sincere
Here comes another with power on his mind
Both with a want for a word in my ear
Both with a message of hope for my kind

Heads of this nation
Fight lies with misinformation
And this gives, that takes
One or the other for the difference it makes
None at all

Red day on blue street
And this world promises everything
Old shoes on new feet again
Nothing changes
Red day on blue street

We are the chosen ones
You have asked us to serve you
We deserve you

It's going the way that we said it would
We say that you never had it so good
No one's a loser who plays our game
The difference is clear, we just changed our name
Nobody knows that it's just the same

Red day on blue street
Or how about
Blue day on red street
It doesn't matter, it really doesn't
It doesn't matter, it really doesn't

Somebody showing me the magical way
Somebody waving the key to my chains
They must believe I was born yesterday
They must believe I've got sand for my brains

Members historical
Woo me with words rhetorical
Blood runs, mud flies
Can't see a thing for the wool in my eyes
In my eyes

Red day on blue street
And this world promises everything
Old shoes on new feet again
Nothing changes

Red day on blue street
This world promises everything
Old shoes on new feet again
Nothing changes

Red day on blue street
Street, promises everything
Old shoes on new feet again
Nothing changes

Red day on blue street


P.S. By the way, I should say this for the record -- and it should be obvious by my previous posts. I think this election does matter. My concern is that, even by electing John McCain, we're only forestalling the inevitable. The entire mindset, morality and worldview of our culture has changed, and not by accident.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Wisdom from Abraham Lincoln

Spoken by the future (and first Republican) president on January 27, 1838 . . .

At what point shall we expect the approach of danger? By what means shall we fortify against it? Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant to step the ocean and crush us at a blow? Never! All the armies of Europe, Asia, and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth in their military chests; with a Bonaparte for a commander, could not by force take a drink from the Ohio, or make a track on the Blue Ridge, in the trial of a thousand years.
At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we ourselves must be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide.