Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Ready for Resurrection Day?

Easter (or Resurrection Day as I prefer to call it) falls on April 12 this year. That's still a couple of weeks off, but it never hurts to contemplate that special day early. And to do that, check out this special commentary by David Brickner, executive director of Jews for Jesus.

In his wonderful column, David discusses the division that is present within Judaism over the subject of the resurrection from the dead. I want to excerpt the following segment from it -- an outstanding summation of the core matter at least for Christians:

The Bible confidently affirms bodily resurrection from the dead whereby we'll be radically changed, yet somehow be ourselves. We know that we'll be praising God, but we also know that "eye hath not seen, ear hath not heard" the wonders that await us in those resurrection bodies. The Bible offers unbounded hope for this life and the life to come. The fact that Jesus rose from the dead not only remains the most compelling evidence that He is the Messiah; it also confirms that He alone is the Lord who gives life. Because He rose from the dead, we who believe in Him will also rise. Hope in the resurrection is central to our faith. The Apostle Paul said, "For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins." (1 Corinthians 15:16-17)

That really is the crux of the matter. That is why evangelicals such as me get a bit riled when theologians who ought to know better fudge on the resurrection, especially that of Christ. A Christianity without the Resurrection of Christ is not Christianity at all.

As we approach Resurrection Day, we would do well to remember that.

Monday, March 30, 2009

A Warning from Mr. Newt

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has a warning for us. It's a warning that's been sounded before, but no one seems to be paying attention.

He's talking about the danger posed by nuclear detonations in the atmosphere above the United States. It is believed that the electromagnetic pulse from such detonations would fry the power grid, which would likely result in the destruction of the country for all intents and purposes. It's why the idea of countries such as Iran or North Korea getting a nuke troubles so many people.

But it doesn't seem like it matters much to our current leadership, does it? Or for that matter, our previous leadership. If we were really afraid a sworn enemy of the country was about to destroy us, you'd think some sort of action would be taken besides clucking our tongues in front of the cameras.

Interesting, isn't it?

Saturday, March 28, 2009

The U.N. Hydra

So the United Nations wants to control the future of the "global warming" kerfuffle? I'm shocked, shocked!

Let's be clear. Enough scientists, meteorologists and climatologists have come out against the prevailing lemming drive to convince me. Global warming is a crock.

The global warming "crisis" has little to do with genuine concern over the climate of the earth. It has everything to do with government control, loss of sovereignty and socialistic redistribution of wealth (capital). Gin up a crisis, and in the midst of the crisis you've ginned up, push for draconian control that you could never get in any other way.

You'd think more people would begin to catch on after a while.

NOTE: Allow me to apologize again for the dearth of substantive posts of late. I've been in a very, very busy period both at work and at home. I'd like to finish my series on persecution, but that will take both time and thought, and I have little for either at the moment.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

George Soros: "Having a Good Crisis"

Is there any way on God's green earth to deport George Soros? This London Daily Mail story ought to outrage you.

If only the rest of America knew how hard this radical leftist "financier" was working to rip the guts out of this country, and to destroy everything our Founders sacrificed so much to accomplish.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

I Love Bears (3)

Old Father Flu has me by the throat today, so in lieu of a substantive post, I hereby enter another installment in my "I Love Bears" series. Doesn't this guy look like he's waiting to be served some brie and Chardonnay?

Monday, March 23, 2009

Wasting Tea at "Tea Parties?"

By now, I'm sure many of you have heard about the "tea parties" being thrown all across the U.S. to protest the tax and spend policies of the Obama Administration. Some are even sending tea bags to the White House and Congress. I liked the idea, until columnist and talk show host Neil Boortz issued this little reminder. The tea bags will never make it to their destinations because of post-9/11 security rules. How convenient!

So what does this mean? It means that instead of a cute protest action that costs us little and gets ignored by the mainstream media, we'll actually have to get serious about making our voices heard. It means that we'll have to personally hound our legislators via phone, letter, fax, public confrontation and other legal, proper means of expressing public will.

In addition, we will need to come out in droves come election time. Throw the bums out, and in sufficient enough numbers to make a difference. Senator Arlen Specter needs to be the first one to get the heave-ho, followed by as many Republicans In Name Only as we can fire.

Next, litigation. It's about time someone began mounting serious Constitutional challenges to this nonsense, and meticulously enough to get past the nettlesome, convenient "standing" issue that gets so many lawsuits thrown out. And we'd best do it before the Administration packs the courts with fellow travelers and Marxists.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

A Dream Within a Dream

I am not typically one who puts a lot of stock in dreams, or interpretation of dreams. Having said that, I do recognize that dreams CAN mean something. We certainly get that from Scripture. Even so, people can also go off half-cocked and put too much stock in what they dream.

I generally don't dream much. When I go to bed and off to sleep, I am out. Completely. Of course, there are those who will insist you always dream, and mostly don't remember what you dream. I won't argue the point. I still insist that I don't dream. But when I do, it's a doozy. I've had a recurring dream for the past five years at least. You tell me what you think is going on.

I have been a broadcaster for most of my adult life - from age 18 until 15 years ago when I began my current job out of broadcasting. Oh, I still do one radio program a week with one of the ministries with which I am involved, but it's not a full time occupation any longer. Even though I am out of "the business," I keep in touch with colleagues who still are in the business. It is amazing how much technology has changed in the last 15 years. And that might be the crux of my dreaming.

In my dream, I always go back to my first radio job. I began in telephone marketing, but always wanted to run the control board. I really didn't care if I was on the air -- I just wanted to punch those buttons and move those dials. But I had to be on the air, so I was.

I was pretty good at it too i.e. the mechanics. In fact, I can remember how things used to be when we had bad weather. The station I was at at the time had two transmitters. One was tube type, and the other was solid state. Once in a while, we had to switch between transmitters when one got knocked off the air. I was the only one in the station outside of the chief engineer who knew how to switch between the two without looking at the instructions. So I got called on quite a bit. But I am getting away from the point of this post -- the dream. So here it is.

I dream that I am back at that station. I go on the air, and am getting ready to read a newscast. But I get tongue-tied. My time to go on air comes after the network news stops, but I freeze. I can't say anything. In panic, I grab a tape to put in to play..a commercial, a public service announcement..anything. I punch the button, but it doesn't play. I cue up a record to play a song, but the turntable doesn't work. Everything I do is a mistake.

Then I am off the air in the sense of doing a board shift. I am in the news department as I was for many years. I am supposed to cover a city council meeting or a school board meeting. But I oversleep and miss the meeting. I am supposed to interview someone, but my tape recorder doesn't work. I know I am going to get in trouble, but I am trapped. There's nothing I can do.

What does all this mean? I am not someone who is typically not confident in what I can do. But in my dream, I am losing it. What is it? Is it because I am aging? Is it because I am a throwback to an earlier time and feel out of place in this present world? Is it because technology is outpacing me? Is it maybe some bad pizza from the night before?

I really don't know. I'd like some opinions.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Obama and Iran

Okay, call me cynical.

I see from the news this morning that President Obama has sent a video message to Iran. While he's speaking, there is text in Farsi running at the bottom of the screen.

It would be interesting to have that Farsi text translated to see if it matches what Obama is saying.

Okay, I'm cynical.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Three Cheers for Rupert Murdoch

No comment from me is necessary regarding this article by NewsCorp chairman Rupert Murdoch. In it, he makes a powerful argument -- if Israel goes down, so does the West.

We ought to heed the warning.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

College Dunces

Sometimes you just want to scream . . .

In this World Magazine column, Janie B. Cheaney exposes the "resentful incapacity" of many of today's college students. The opening paragraph is a stunner, recounting how a class of literature students at SUNY-Oswego can't seem to understand even the basics of the Helen of Troy story (Iliad and Odyssey) even after studying the tale for weeks. Most appalling of all, they don't care about their inaccuracies, and even get indignant when you try to correct them. "Facts don't matter. Words mean whatever we want them to mean. How dare you say we're wrong about anything. That's just your opinion."

Sorry. Words mean things and ideas have consequences. There are right answers and there are wrong answers. This culture isn't just slouching toward Gomorrah. It's diving in head first, and it will reap a bitter harvest.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Turning the Guns Inward

As I said yesterday, I'm pressed for time this week. That means a smattering of news that caught my eye early today.

First, this piece by Joseph Farah. Would you consider yourself a terrorist suspect? Here's a clip from Joseph's article . . .

Did you support Ron Paul for president last year?

Do you believe there are people actively working to merge the U.S. with Mexico and Canada?

Do you display an American flag?

Did you ever display a Libertarian Party bumper sticker on your car?

Do you buy gold?

Any of these characteristics might lead law enforcement authorities to conclude you represent a danger to the republic. You are more likely to be a militia member or a domestic terrorist, according to a document distributed to Missouri police and, potentially, law enforcement authorities nationwide.
That is the stunning news from a Feb. 20 report called "The Modern Militia Movement," which identified these "red flags" or warning signs.


You are not suspect if you have an "I like Osama" bumper sticker on your car.

You are not a suspect if you attend regularly attend a Wahhabi mosque.

You are not a suspect if you are preaching hate and anti-Americanism in a church formerly attended by the president of the United States.

You are not a suspect if you are a member of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Do you get the picture? Welcome to the Obama World.

And the scary thing is that cops are going along with this.

Next is this little piece from David Limbaugh. In the linked column, Rush's brother discusses Obama's Marxism, which everyone seems to be ignoring.

And finally, this little clip from a WorldNetDaily column by Roger Russell . . .

We have grown into a people I don't recognize. We have surrendered our badge of courage without a fight. We have taken off our cloak of integrity without the bat of an eyelash. We have jettisoned our honor without a tear. We have welcomed ignorance and sloth because to study is to know, and to know is to be required to act. We have grown so non-analytical and accepting that we are taken in by any two-bit huckster with a smooth tongue. And worse, sometimes when we well know it is a lie, we have become so self-absorbed and greed-driven and have lost our personal integrity sufficiently that we vote for it anyway. I guess, in final analysis, it doesn't even matter if we have a constitutionally qualified president. We are too lazy to care.

Some might be inclined to agree with the above viewpoints. Some will dismiss it as kookdom. Whatever your take, I hope it makes you think long and hard, and not just gulp down what you hear on the mainstream media or the White House press office (and there's little difference between those two).

Monday, March 16, 2009

Monday, Monday . . .

A good day and good week to all, but this week might well be very sporadic in the posting department, at least as far as I am concerned. I'll try to chime in with something as often as I can, but I am in a very hectic period at the moment.

In the meantime, keep your sanity and trust in the Lord.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

A Warning from Dr. Koop

In this World Magazine article, former U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop issues a sober warning about socialized medicine coming to our shores thanks to the Obama administration.

Now 92, Dr. Koop has a special interest in this issue. Here's a quote from the article's author, Cal Thomas, who includes a quote from Dr. Koop . . .

I called Koop, who is now 92. He reminded me that in 1988 he had an ailment that left him a quadriplegic. Surgery restored his limbs, but "if I'd lived in England, I would have been nine years too old to have the surgery that saved my life and gave me another 21 years." Koop fears that the United States is about to embrace English socialized medicine with government authorities deciding who lives and who dies. He says the idea of government second-guessing doctors sickens him.

Cal Thomas goes on to say that "great inhumanities are usually ushered in at the extremes in order to make the public more accepting."

A valid warning that ought to be heeded.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Why Do We Keep Electing Wrong Rulers?

I am rather pressed today, but I have something that might interest you in lieu of a post from me. This link will take you to a rather lengthy article by WorldNetDaily vice president David Kupelian. Lengthy, but well worth the read. David examines why we keep electing politicians to office who in the end do nothing but fly the country straight into the ground. We truly are reaping the harvest that we sowed.

Anyone have buyer's remorse from the last election yet?

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Book Alert

My friend Dr. Ron Gleason (see sidebar links) has a new book out on the subject of the death penalty. As you can see from the graphic, it's called The Death Penalty On Trial - Taking a Life for a Life Taken. Rev. Kevin Johnson and I interviewed Ron this week on our radio program, Perspective Underground. As always, it was a fascinating discussion. I recommend this book highly if you are wrestling with this question and wondering if the death penalty is biblical.

Next, I happened to see an ad in the latest CBD catalog that raised my eyebrow a bit. It's for the NIV 2:52 Boys' Bible, which is apparently geared toward 8-to-12 year old boys. What raised my eyebrow is the pitch line:

Rick Osborne's study tracks help young men grow "Deeper, Smarter, Stronger, and Cooler" in the Lord.

Now, I am all for studying God's Word and getting kids into it as early as possible. But do we want to encourage a study of God's Word by appealing to boastful vanity? I think we know boys at that age place a great value on being "cool." I guess we can ask the question of what it means to be "Cooler in the Lord," but whatever is meant by whoever wrote that pitch line, we know what is most often meant by boys who want to be "cool" or think that they are "cool."

Couldn't they have written something that gave God the glory? If anyone is "cool," it's the Lord and I almost blush at using that term in reference to Him.

While I am at it, there's something that bugs me about "marketing" God's Word. But what do I know? I'm a meanie.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

More Global Warming Fun

You have to hand it to European Union President Vaclav Klaus. He seems determined to throw a monkey wrench into not only the global warming juggernaut, but also into the globalist succubus itself.

I hope you enjoy the linked story as much as I did. I'd like to see more of this kind of derring-do. And while I'm at it, kudos to the growing number of meteorologists, climatologists and other scientists who are yelling "stop" to this idiocy. The last count I had was around 600.

Monday, March 09, 2009

The Long Weekend/Between the Wars

I recently received a copy of The Long Weekend by Robert Graves and Alan Hodge, thanks to The Folio Society. It's a history of sorts dealing with Great Britain between World Wars I and II. Early on in the book, there is this arresting passage that deals with the aftermath of World War I . . .

Most European wars in the past two hundred years have end in what is now derogatorily called a "patched-up peace," that is to say a peace in which the loser is forced to cede colonies or pay an indemnity but retains national sovereignty through its territories -- and is allowed to gather its forces for a revenge if it wishes. Our four gentlemanly wars with France, in the eighteenth century, for example, had been of that nature.

But this war was different: the Germans, it was said, had fought it on the novel principle of deliberately disregarding the accepted rules of European warfare. It was true that while individual French, British, Austrian, Turkish and other soldiers had done numerous atrocious deeds in the course of the fighting, usually in revenge for real or alleged atrocities by the enemy, the philosophy of "total war," that a war can best be won by complete ruthlessness, was of German origin and did not seem decently applicable to European warfare.

The torpedoing of hospital ships, the sinking of unarmed neutral vessels without provision for the crews' safety, and the use of flame throwers and poison gas were German introductions that genuinely shocked British opinion; victory had therefore been looked forward to by the British generally as a justification of force by civilized manners. It was felt that a really severe peace must be imposed on the Germans (throwing the sword into the scale with a
vae victis) in punishment for all the damage to property, the loss of life and the outrage to sensibilities that they had caused to Europe. The Victory Medal, issued soon after the war ended, officially approved the view by styling the war "the Great War for Civilization."

Without a doubt, that has to be one of the most breathtaking things I've read in quite a while. It is really illustrative of how hard the human race strives to put a civilized face on war. Of course, there are -- and ought to be -- established international norms in dealing with atrocities and war crimes. However, maintaining Marquis of Queensbury rules in combat is difficult when you're fighting an enemy that has no such restraints. Radical Islam comes to mind.

Definitely food for thought.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Patriotism of Yesteryear

For today's commentary, I thought I'd offer up some posters from World War II. In the current political climate, one has to wonder if there's enough of this sentiment left in the United States should the population finally become aware of the threat to our liberty.

Friday, March 06, 2009

Hating our British Cousins?

I've been pretty busy this week, so I haven't had time to prepare a decent post. However, this little item caught my eye. Aside from the little unpleasantness with the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812, Great Britain has been a pretty important ally and friend of the United States. Personally, England and Wales are among the very few places around the world that I'd like to see, no doubt because of my own Welsh heritage and love for English literature.

If the United States has to thumb its nose at a country, I can pick a few where it makes sense to do so. But this insulting breach of protocol doesn't bode well.

And they called George W. Bush a rube.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Viguerie on Conservative Vacuum

While the Obama administration gins up the flap over Rush Limbaugh, well-known conservative Richard Viguerie made some observant comments about what's happened to the GOP of late. In Viguerie's view, people like Rush have to step forward because the powers that be in the Republican Party have either left the reservation or are ineffective. I think he's spot on, so I am posting excerpts of his remarks here. The original article can be found over at Newsmax:

"Nature abhors a vacuum, and there is no vacuum in nature as empty as the leadership of the Republican Party today."

Said Viguerie: "The GOP absolutely refuses to replace the Congressional leaders who helped get the party and the country into this mess. There are many Republican governors campaigning for the Obama 'stimulus' plan that is wrecking the economy and will push America deeper into socialism. Governor Jindal's speech was technocratic, without passion and toothless, and Michael Steele's foolish attack on Rush Limbaugh will, I'm sure, cost the party many millions in contributions."

"Limbaugh and Hannity and most all of their conservative colleagues have something to say. They actually believe in something. They have the confidence of their convictions. They don't cower in fear of the President's popularity. They know that his popularity is built on the sand of false promises and false premises. Like Ronald Reagan facing the Soviet Union, they know how this story ends."

Even Jim Cramer of CNBC, who isn't a conservative, is providing more honest and outspoken leadership than the 'loyal opposition' about how Obama's policies are destroying the life savings of Americans.

"Americans are already beginning to realize that the new president is every bit as reckless and extreme as conservatives said he was," Viguerie said. "But the Republican Party can't get any traction, because the party leadership is as confused and clueless as the Obama administration."


Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Hmmmm . . .

If I didn't know better, I'd think some people were trying to sow chaos and wreck the United States on purpose. 

Shame on me and my suspicious mind. 

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Persecution (Part 3)

After a busy weekend, I have some time now to post, and that means part three of my commentary on potential persecution of Christians here in the United States. The question I want to examine briefly is the subject of resisting such persecution i.e. whether such resistance is justified in a biblical sense. It's a tough question — for me anyway.

One of the linchpins in this debate is the proper interpretation of Romans 13. Here is the specific passage in question . . .

Every person is to be in subjection to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God. Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves. For rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same; for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil. Therefore it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath, but also for conscience’ sake. For because of this you also pay taxes, for rulers are servants of God, devoting themselves to this very thing. Render to all what is due them: tax to whom tax is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honor to whom honor. Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law (Romans 13:1-8).

Some theologians interpret this passage to mean that believers are to submit to their governmental authorities no matter what, unless the authorities are trying to compel them to disobey God. Such an argument is compelling, especially when it is tied to how the Lord Jesus conducted Himself before the authorities, and how the Apostle Paul conducted himself when imprisoned. However, are the examples of Jesus and Paul appropriate examples, or are those examples merely an example of apples and oranges? Is this the only way to interpret this Romans passage?

Other theologians have a different view, and most of our Founding Fathers here in America had a different view. They focused on a logical syllogism within this passage — that a legitimate government is intended by God to be a terror to evildoers. But when the government ceases being a terror to evildoers and begins being a terror to the righteous, it is no longer a legitimate government and can be resisted in good conscience.

Another thing that makes this a difficult subject for me is understanding the principles on which this country was founded. In the days of Jesus and Paul, the Roman emperor was supreme and his word was law. Here in the United States, "we the people" are the final authority, at least under the constitutional system put together by the Founders. Our founding documents -- and especially the Declaration of Independence -- presuppose the right of a people to rise up and throw off tyranny. In our Constitution, the rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights were recognized as inherent, and not granted by government. These rights were viewed as being granted by God Himself, and could not lawfully be taken away by the government.

There was even a significant dispute over whether to include the Bill of Rights in the Constitution. Supporters of the Bill viewed it as necessary to codify these rights so they'd be spelled out for everyone to see. Opponents believed that if these rights were codified, they would be viewed as government-granted and subject to repeal. Both parties, however, agreed that these rights were inherent human rights and could not lawfully be taken away by government. I am afraid we have lost that notion today.

This debate takes some interesting twists and turns. Some of those who hold the earlier view of complete submission to government view the Spirit of 1776 as the spirit of rebellion, and that rebellion is as "the sin of divination" (1 Samuel 15:23). It's hard for me to take that harsh a view, because one of the things that prompted the Pilgrims to come here was their desire to worship God as their consciences dictated. By the time of the War of Independence, the chief concern had become economic, but there was still a spiritual concern over what the colonists believed to be tyranny. England was not innocent when it came to religious persecution, with "Bloody Mary" being a good example.

As you can see, this isn't an easy question. My emotional, gut reaction is to fight for the rights that so many have died to uphold. But my final position must not be driven by emotion. It must be driven by God's Word, illuminated by His Holy Spirit, and must result in glory and honor to the Lord. When it comes to persecution, will said persecution be for political beliefs, or will it be over religious, spiritual principles? Can the two be separated?

That's all for now. We'll keep exploring this subject in the days and weeks to come, although posts will not necessarily be in direct succession to each other.