Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

O' Donnell Got It Right

Debate today between Christine O' Donnell and Chris Coons brought to light a common misunderstanding of the Constitution. Many people still believe that the Constitution (in the Bill of Rights) constructs a wall of separation between the Christian faith and public institutions like schools. The famous phrase "separation of church and state" was used in a Supreme Court decision in 1947 by a liberal court seeking to remove Christian influences from our public institutions. I say specifically Christian because this decision has almost exclusively been used to restrict Christian influence, which was THE underlying philosophical influence of our founding. The Founding fathers NEVER intended to remove Christian influences from public life. (A quick review of our national holidays will support this.) Also see David Barton's excellent review of this topic.

www.wallbuilders.com/LIBissuesArticles.asp?id=123


With this said, Mr Coons reveals his fundamental misunderstanding of the Constitution. The Bill of Rights was not penned to establish the rights or structure of the GOVERNMENT, such as to be free from religious influences, but to articulate our God given, unalienable rights and the limits of government so as to preserve these rights to the PEOPLE. True, this clause establishes a wall, but it is a wall beyond which the government cannot go, not religious influence and expression.

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof".

Like Ms O' Donnell said, where is the mention of a separation of church and state?

Friday, September 24, 2010

A Culture in Pain

The longer I live the more I am intrigued with the concept of a moral fiber or fabric that holds a society together. Mystery and spirituality seem to shroud the connection of morality to our lives. Religious people repeat the mantra, "Morality, morality, morality!" Is it just for them? Is it important?

Understanding morality and what force it really exerts in life is difficult to assess at times. For instance, traditional morality tells us that lying is wrong. So you would think that when you lie you would immediately get an electrical shock, a pain in your head or a tweaked conscious at the least. But the truth is when someone lies they most often benefit from it immediately. Examples like this make it hard to say morality matters or is important. Politicians seem to demonstrate this every day.

The current state that we are in as a nation has brought the question to the forefront. Does morality matter? Or are we just in a financial mess that has nothing to do with morality. Did morality (good or bad) have anything to do with this situation we are in or is it the result of an accounting mistake? Would a sound moral standard have prevented this crisis?

If there is a moral standard or law that is woven into the existence of man then it must be important. If there is a moral law that is written into our conscious then when it is violated in some way you would expect some consequence.

May I gently suggest that there are consequences. Those little lies people benefit from build a character that will meet with trouble. Even if it is after you have been elected governor of a state.

When I was a kid there was a commercial whose by-line was "It's not nice to fool Mother Nature." Well, not without consequences anyway. If there is a moral law that is universal then you would think the same would be true for it. You can't fool the moral law, something will make you aware of the infraction.

Is there any evidence of this thesis? If there is a moral law and it is important, then if you violate the law you would expect to have some adverse experience from violating it. This would be true whether you are aware of, believe in, or know all of the moral law.

The last thing I want to do is injure someone who is already hurting. My real hope is to start a process of healing in the lives of those who are hurting. The stakes are very high so I think we have to have this discussion. A recent article I read provides a good place to start. My thanks to http://dyspepsiageneration.com/ for high-lighting this article.

You can read the article at http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2010/09/1657 . The article addresses the phenomena of women who have had an abortion and are suffering afterward with depression, grief, anxiety etc. This does not happen to all women who have abortions. To women who experience this, it does not matter if they believe abortion to be morally wrong or a legitimate choice. A couple of captions from this article fascinated me. The authors are talking about a web site for women who are struggling to connect and help each other through this experience.

The website contains thousands of women’s stories about their abortions—and about their post-abortion feelings. And many of these women are in acute pain; some are almost totally incapacitated. One writes in a post: “I am not coping at all; I feel as though the top of my head is going to fly off.” Another says: “I am just grieving like crazy!” A third: “I don’t understand why I am not getting better, but worse all the time! I am so depressed!” (Stories on this website are protected by copyright, and it is not permitted to quote directly from them. Quotations provided here are therefore faithful rewordings.)

The use of the word "pain " to describe what these women are experiencing is accurate and insightful. One medical definition of the word is: an emotional response to a noxious stimulus. In layman's terms it is an emotional reaction to an unpleasant or damaging event.

Pain could be considered to originate from one of three areas of our being, our physical body, our psyche and (I believe) our spirit. Science has discovered a great deal about physical pain. The biology of pain is one of my areas of interest. I believe that physical pain is a great model for understanding psychological and spiritual pain. Many cultures do not make a distinction between these types of pain. They believe all pain is physical, psychological and spiritual. Even if they are not the same, they are all three intimately mingled. After all, the same drugs that relieve physical pain are used by addicts to relieve psychological and spiritual pain.

Pain is the universal warning. It is universal in its message to the body, mind and soul. Its says, "Something is wrong, something is being damaged." The acute phase of pain tells us that something is being damaged. The chronic, dull ache tells us there is something wrong. With that said lets read more of the article.

What is particularly striking is that most of the women who have these powerful emotional reactions to their abortion are stunned by them. They were not opposed to abortion; many were actively pro-choice. They were blind-sided by their own reaction. One woman lamented—and thousands of others echo her mystified anguish—“If this was the right decision, why do I feel so terrible?”

and

Thus, though a woman can decide rationally to have an abortion, afterwards the other shoe may drop—and it may drop very hard indeed. For the thousands of women on afterabortion.com and similar websites, a terrible and shocking reaction sets in after their abortion. Many women have discovered that somewhere down in their psyche—deep in their limbic system—they were already in a living relationship with the fetus, their “baby” (though they may have thought they thought it was just a random clump of cells). Often what lasts is not the relief or the power of the logical arguments: these may prove very short-lived. It is, rather, the failed, betrayed relationship between the woman and her fetus—now, in her mind, her dead baby—that has staying power.

This kind of ache of the mind and soul has a deep meaning that can't be ignored or misinterpreted without grave consequences. This mysterious, mystical thing called moral law may be the very thing that is sounding the warning, "Something is wrong, something is being damaged." Pain is the language it speaks in. If this moral law was written into the psyche and soul of men and women from the beginning and we have lost our conscious ability to know and abide by it, we are in for a tsunami of pain. Breaking this moral law in ignorance will leave us suffering without knowing why. Pain without understanding kills hope.

Science is now looking for new drugs that will “fool” the brain into not making the assessment that something is wrong. This new drug could be marvelous for those in physical pain, but if it also negates the conscious it may be the parent of a thousand Hitlers. Could mankind survive without a normal, healthy, functioning conscious?

The writers of the article then goes into a strange explanation of this experience these women have.

If we look at all this in evolutionary terms, we cannot be surprised. Human mothers (unlike the females of most other species) produce few offspring. For infants to survive, they must be very carefully tended and protected, over many years. Historically, culturally, the investment of women in their young has been tremendous. Billions of mothers have lavished their time, energy, and attention—their love—on their children. And what is the reward, the reinforcement for all this maternal time and effort? What does the mother get out of it? Whatever it is, it must be a reliable, immediate, and strong reinforcement. Otherwise, infant mortality—always high in the human and primate past—would have led to our extinction. Thus, we should not be surprised that human mothers are richly rewarded—by their own feelings, their own brain responses, their own chemistry—for good mothering, and that they are emotionally punished, internally, for failure.

It is a contradiction in reason to say that evolution, a "system" of random mutations that result in the advancement of a species (this is a stretch of reason in itself) has intelligently designed a sophisticated physiological system of punishments and rewards for the furtherance of a species. It does looks like design to me but not the "design" of a mindless, random process.

If that mythical moral law really does exist and has an author, experiences like these women relate may be first hand encounters with it. Biological pain warns us of harm to the body. Psychological and spiritual pain warns us of harm to the soul and spirit. This moral law, when breached, may result in psychological and spiritual pain, the signal that something is damaged or harmed. This moral law, if we could know it and live by it, would then protect us from harm or damage.

If there is a moral law that could protect us from harm then the author must have a motive for writing a law for us to live by that would keep us from harm. Could I be so bold as to suggest the author cares about those for whom the law was written? That avoiding harm and pain was part of the reason for writing this moral law? The ability to perceive pain is in larger terms a gift to protect us. Pain was never intended to be a way of life yet if we continue to deny there are harmful beliefs, attitudes and actions we are bound to live in agony.

Knowing the moral law, the breaking of which brings serious consequences, could save us and our neighbors a great deal of pain and change the experience of life into something much more than we could have imagined.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Gotta See This One

Here is a great video posted by my good friend Philmon. This is a "gotta see" video. Check it out on his blog.

Let's not tolerate our annihilation.


http://philmon.blogspot.com/2010/08/bill-whittle-cuts-through-crap.html

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Protesting Funerals, A New Honored American Tradition

www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/08/16/federal-judge-rules-missouris-funeral-protest-ban-unconstitutional/

The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals just ruled a Missouri ban on protesting at funerals is unconstitutional. The two Missouri statutes banned protesting funerals for 1 hour before to 1 hour after the service. They also established a 300 ft. no protesting zone around the funeral. These two restrictions were struck down by the court. The ACLU lawyer representing the Westboro Baptist Church said the law created too large a zone of restriction of free speech. This creates and interesting situation.

I wonder how this affects the restrictions on protesting at abortion clinics. State statutes allow protesting but only at a specified distances from an abortion clinic and in the case of a residence of an abortion provider the zone is 300 ft.

www.firstamendmentcenter.org/assembly/topic.aspx?topic=buffer_zones

This site gives a great history of the courts findings on protesting at abortion clinics. It is clear that getting an abortion without interruption is a much more important and noble right than laying your son or daughter to rest after they gave their life for their country.

And what about electioneering at poles? Does the 25 foot no electioneering rule get nixed? Don't count on it.

Missouri also set restrictions on where you can wear a firearm in the Conceal and Carry Law. Individual businesses and organizations can also post a sign restricting firearms from their facilities. That is a second amendment right restriction if you weren't keeping score. I'm not arguing for or against this restriction. I'm just saying we put restrictions on certain constitutionally protected rights and not on others, all based on the opinion of the court.

This is what happens when you trust the courts to "interpret" the constitution without any rules for doing so. It used to be the practice of the court to investigate the intentions of the authors of a statute or amendment to make a ruling. By dropping this practice the courts have established themselves as the legislative authority for our nation, telling the legislators what they can and cannot legislate according to their opinion. This was never the intent of the Founders. They never intended for a government official who is not elected to have the role of setting public policy.

This has to change. In my humble opinion this is one of the greatest and longest running threats to our freedom.

So let us honor the rights of some who dishonor those who defend their rights to dishonor them in honor of our courts.

Monday, August 9, 2010

The Problems with the Gay Marriage Case

I saw Ted Olson’s interview yesterday on Fox News with Chris Wallace. He made an impassioned an articulate argument for gay marriage. As I listened I was shocked and a little disappointment at some glaring errors in his argument. I will try to explain them. His main argument was that from the founding of our nation everyone has had the right to marry whomever they wished. He used a case that had gone to the Supreme Court of interracial marriage as his main argument. He makes several glaring errors in his logic that I want to address.

Watch it here.

www.foxnews.com/on-air/fox-news-sunday/transcript/ted-olson-debate-over-judicial-activism-and-same-sex-marriage


1. He assumes that a man and a man can get married (or woman and woman). He is presuming the redefinition marriage. A big presumption based on the moral belief that a relationship between a man and a man (or woman and a woman) is the same as a relationship between a man and woman. He starts his argument based on this presumption that they are the same. He presumes himself to be right and his belief more informed than ours. The problem is that a vast majority of American disagree with him. They are not the same and have never been considered the same in American History by anything close to a majority. From this assumption he tells Americas we have no right to disagree with this assumption.

If these two differing views were decided between at the ballot box there would be no controversy.

2. He used a court case challenging an interracial marriage ban to say that it used to be against the law for people of different races to marry. He again makes the assumption that same-sex marriages are the same as interracial marriages. Again, a huge presumption based on a moral belief that interracial marriage is the same as same-sex marriage, a belief never held by anything close to a majority of Americans; a belief that cannot be supported by history or science.


3. In this stance he is presuming that sexual preference is in the same category as race. This is a dangerous presumption. Sexual preference is a matter of behavior, not genetic expression. To make this assumption that sexual preference is the same as race in regard to legal or moral issues is a dangerous one. To establish that one has a right to a harmful behavior based on a preference is to undermine our legal system. One could then say I have a right to steal because I prefer to steal rather than work for my living.



4. So what about traditional marriage, isn’t it a preference and based on behavior. Yes, but there is also genetic expression that is obviously required. This genetically expressed difference of gender has been the foundation for societies from the dawn of civilization. Everyone that is, is because of this difference, even those practicing homosexuality. There is a difference and we have the right to make the moral distinction. Mr. Olson is fighting to take that right from us. What makes his moral belief superior to the majority of Americans? He has nothing in history or science to prove his position is morally superior to the one we have held since our founding.



5. www.philmon.blogspot.com/ gets it right when he explains that Mr. Olson and Judge Walker are in essence saying that the California constitution is unconstitutional; that states do not have the right to establish matters of morality; that only lawyers and judges have this right. He has set his own opinion and the opinion of his clients above the state of California’s.



If gay marriage (or unions for that matter) is recognized by our legal system, the status of wholesome and proper will be conferred on it (without our consent or discussion.) This is in direct contradiction to the stance of the Catholic Church and a vast majority of protestant churches. Their opinion will then be considered discriminatory and illegal. They will have to recognize and potentially perform gay marriages contrary to their moral conscience or be sued for discrimination. Any discussion in church against gay marriage or homosexuality will be ruled discriminatory. (It will have to be if this issue is deemed equivalent to race.) It will happen if this ruling stands. Good and decent people who hold to the proven standards of our Founding Fathers will then be persecuted for their stance against a harmful behavior.

We have the right to make moral distinctions and enshrine them into our legal system Mr. Olson. We have the right to saythat you have no right to enshrine your moral distinctions over ours through judicial fiat.

This blogger holds to the belief that we are all humans of equal worth. That standards are for the improvement of us all. The highest of these is to love each other as we love ourselves. Allowing the standards to be lowered hurts us all.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Freedom to Make Moral Judgements

I couldn't believe my eyes when I ran across the reasoning that Judge Walker gave for overturning the will of the people of California. He ruled:


The judge said supporters of the ban were clearly motivated by moral disapproval of homosexuality. “Moral disapproval alone is an improper basis on which to deny rights to gay men and lesbians,” Walker wrote. “The evidence shows conclusively that Proposition 8 enacts, without reason, a private moral view that same-sex couples are inferior to opposite-sex couples.”

http://news.yahoo.com/s/csm/20100805/ts_csm/318009

"Moral disapproval alone is an improper basis on which to deny rights..." only if you are defending traditional American values. If you are an gay activist Federal Judge "moral disapproval" is plenty of justification to overturn the will of 7 million voters. Judge Walker also found that 7 million voters held the same "private moral view". Seems pretty public to me.

Some one's morality will prevail. It is impossible for both side to have their way. One is right the other is not.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Christianity and Freedom

The following article lays out the threat we are facing with radical Islam here at home. Many would contend that it is not just radical Islam that would like to institute sharia law here in the U.S. I wonder what is the percentage of the total Muslim population that would prefer sharia law over our current legal system. To look at the condition American society today I can see how some would be mislead into believing we would be better off with sharia law established.

http://article.nationalreview.com/print/?q=ZjEwOTk4ZmIzZGYwOTNlOTRlMTY1OWIxMWNkMmYyYzA=


I would like to make two points and leave you to hash this out for yourself.

1. If sharia law is a threat to our American freedom then it certainly would not have been the right set of philosophies to draft the American form of constitutional government from. (I believe that no other major religion would have been lead to such a government but lets just consider Islam right now.)

2. If Christianity supplied the over arching set of values and principles that American freedom was born out of, shouldn't we have another look at what we got from Christianity that made us so great? Would our troubles today be less if we still held those values and principles?

OK, so that was more than 2 points but who's counting. If we as citizens had a real understanding of what is good and what is evil we would not be easily fooled by anything (especially dishonest politicians). We used to get that ability to discern good from evil from the Bible.

Our Founders did. Up until the time we started to remove Christian influence from our public life, court rooms, class rooms, town squares etc, our success was a testament to their wisdom.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

One Morality Will Prevail

Just in case you thought it an isolated case. The following is another student punished for believing homosexuality to be morally wrong.

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2010/07/28/court-university-expel-student-opposes-homosexuality/

Instead of deciding these matters of public policy and morality at the poles we have allowed liberal judges, professors and intellectuals to assign us our morality. I would be very disappointed if abortion had become legal via a national ballot but it would not be nearly as grievous as having the moral issue settled for us by an arrogant panel of judges. National debate, open discussion is at the heart of republican governance. Circumventing these is creating a division among our population that is coming to a head. This could be avoided by letting free Americans exercise their freedoms in deciding what our morality will be.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Here is another example of the open mindedness and tolerance of the left. (HA). I mean no one any harm. Quite the opposite I hope and work for health and healing of everyone.

This is one more example of the fact that one side's morality must prevail. You cannot have two opposing views that are equally treated or preferred without one prevailing over the other. This is an example:


http://www.foxnews.com/us/2010/07/27/georgia-university-tells-student-lose-religion-lawsuit-claims/

Instead of judicial fiat or executive order ruling our public policy we have to force the discussion publicly.

Monday, July 5, 2010

American Freedom is Unique and Distinctly Christian

I was sitting in church yesterday during our song service which included our usual patriotic hymns. The Battle Hymn of the Republic came up and we sang all four verses. After reading the words of all four verses of the song the name of the song peeked my interest. I did a search as soon as I got to a computer. WOW, what a bizarre trip through Americana. (Apparently this song stirs up some deep, dark convictions. Google it and see for yourself.) Anyway, I did find some consensus. This song was the theme of the Union Army and adopted by the Republican Party in one of their conventions. It distinctly refers to Christian doctrine:

In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
With a glory in his bosom that transfigures you and me:
As he died to make men holy, let us die to make men free,
While God is marching on.

I just couldn't imagine the apoplectic reaction we would get from the left if this were once again the song our warriors sang going into battle. This is clearly a violation of the "separation of church and state" clause of the Constitution by the military and political leaders of the time. Why didn't someone shut this down?

(This is a trick question.)

America's Founding was inspired by Christianity. The First Amendment was not to limit Religion's influence on public life and Government but to limit Government's influence on religion. (In the 1700's "religion" almost always meant Christianity.)

The Declaration of Independence is the document that declared our birth as a nation and it makes us the first nation in history to claim the God granted inalienable right of liberty and establish a governmental system based on it. To say there is a separation between church and state is to lose this God given right and leave liberty in the hands of men and governments to barter out. It means we have to abandon the Declaration's founding claims of the self evident truths. Americans used to know this.

Alexis De Tocqueville in his Democracy in America notes of Americans in the 1830's:

"The Americans combine the notions of Christianity and of liberty so intimately in their minds that it is impossible to make them conceive the one without the other; and with them this conviction does not spring from that barren, traditionary faith which seems to vegetate rather than to live in the soul." Democracy in America vol 1 p 306

He added on the next page:

"Despotism may govern without faith, but liberty cannot."

Our President and a prominent leader in the Republican party (Carl Rove) have been quoted as saying that we are not a Christian nation. Do they really understand what this means? Do we get to vote on it? I realize that our morality does not live up to the standards of the Bible but do we want to leave the philosophies of Christianity that inspired the birth of our country and it's unparalleled freedoms without a vote, forum or even a discussion?

Christianity gave us, as a nation, more than we realize. One of the most important things it gave us was a sense of right and wrong that transcends the experience of all mankind. We need a refresher of values that guide families and nations through troubling times as well as prosperous ones.

Friday, May 14, 2010

When God Borrows Your Life

If you have lived long enough you have certainly had a time when you looked at a wrecked situation around you and said, "Why is this happening to me?" I've been there. It can be the result of a thousand small problems at one time or one big life changing painful event. Sometimes these situations are the result of our own doing but many times they fall upon us without warning and without our being able to do anything about them. "Why?" comes out involuntarily.



As a christian I believe these times are known by God. He may even be the author of them. That's harsh. God is supposed to love you right? Why would He bring something painful into your life that you can't do anything about? Why would He have someone to lose their job, get transferred away from their family, allow the loss of a loved one, allow a businessman to go bankrupt, allow a serious illness? Why would He allow someone who loves and follows Him to experience such a painful loss or failure?



I am sure that many times it is to correct a wrong motive or attitude. That's a given, but I am persuaded that He has much more in mind. When things are changing in your life beyond your control God is taking the wheel. You may have come to a level of maturity or devotion that God can work with. It could be that your training has been completed and your are being transferred to the front lines.



The life of Joseph in the Bible is so rich with instruction for this kind of life experience. Joseph found himself in the bottom of a pit at the hands of his brothers one day. I'm sure he could hear them debating about killing him. (It could be said he was there because of an attitude of arrogance toward his brothers that was fed by his father's favoritism -Gen 33:2.) I bet Joseph had a "why me" moment. We have the benefit of looking back on the whole of his life to see that God was just beginning Joseph's life work. It was harsh to be sure but great deeds require equally great sacrifices. Joseph got the nod in Heaven for the job. From the pit, into slavery, into prison Joseph got a crash course in training he would not have gotten at home under his father's favoritism. God was borrowing Joseph's life.



What Joseph's achieved on loan to God was far beyond what he could have achieved on his own in his own wisdom. His own wisdom would have left him wondering aimlessly through life with an elevated opinion of himself (Gen. 37:14-15.) God had a much bigger picture in mind. Eventually Joseph himself came to see God's purpose. He states it in Genesis 50:20.

"As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today." ESV

He didn't white wash his brother's intent but he didn't miss God's sovereignty in the situation either. He saw how God used him to save hundreds of thousands of peoples lives from starvation. God had a bigger plan. He took Joseph's life on a wild ride through rough circumstances to use him in a great way to save many lives.

Is it possible that's what is happening to you? Maybe you are just in the rough circumstances that take you to His purpose for you in His kingdom, "to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today." Don't disqualify yourself. Don't quit. Don't refuse it. Don't doubt God has a plan to bless and use you.

Jer 29:11-13 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for wholeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me. When you seek me with all your heart,"

Friday, May 7, 2010

Social Justice = Socialism Injustice II

To build on the last post...

The first stated injustice #1, has been a matter of practice in our government for quite some time. The government has been stepping between individuals and the natural consequences of their unwise or harmful behavior for over 60 years now. I am all for helping someone after a mistake or bad turn of events. That's one thing, but to not address a problem, as a problem or mistake, and continue to fund it is not helpful for anyone.

Intervening to stop the natural consequences of bad behavior is (for the government) to play God, and contradict nature's laws. It is costly, frustrating and futile.

Whether you believe it or not we have been semi-socialist since FDR. To the extent we have been socialist we have demonstrated the folly of socialism. The war on poverty has failed miserably. Social Security officially runs out of money this year. Even with Welfare Reform the system is failed at best.

The current administration is now proposing the institution of the second injustice (#2 in previous post) to its fullest extent (see link in previous post.) Charging the "high producers" a fee to reduce their income enough to make them "equal" to the "low or non-producers" will make "low or non-producers" of us all and demonstrate once again the flaws of socialism.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Socialism In-Justice

I couldn't leave this one without comment. Socialism is based on injustice. It insures injustice in two ways.

1 It steps between an individual and the natural consequences of their bad decisions and passes the cost of those decisions on to those not responsible for them. And further those not responsible for those bad decisions cannot do anything to right the situation (stop bad behavior.)

2 It steps between a responsible, industrious, individual and the rewards for their good behavior, to pay for the irresponsible behavior of others, offering no redress for this grievance.

This is what is meant by making "everybody equal."

Everyone deserves an equal opportunity.

Making everyone equal is foolish and unjust. Transfering "wealth" from the one who has worked and sacrificed for it to someone who knows nothing of the stresses involved to get it is a crime.


http://www.breitbart.tv/al-sharpton-we-wont-have-true-social-justice-until-everything-is-equal-in-everybodys-house

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Islam and the Constitution

Bill Federer is a great resource if any of you want more info. He is almost as good as Barton. This is one of those "think it through" articles.

http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=111055

Let me emphasis again I love all people. I want everyone to experience God's love and forgiveness personally. (I need it daily.)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Neutrality is not an Option

A paragraph from Mark Levin's book Liberty and Tyranny:

"Attempts to stigmatize as "religious zealots" or marginalize as "social extremists" those individuals who resist the Statist's secular impositions- for they are the coercion behind America's moral and cultural decline - is to condemn conservatism, the Founders, and the civil society. How can it be said, as it often is, that moral order is second to liberty when one cannot survive without the other? A people cannot remain free and civilized without moral purposes, constraints and duties. What would be left but relativism manifesting itself in anarchy, followed by tyranny and brute force."


There are consequences to what you believe. The battle between Good and Evil is still raging in our time. If you claim neutrality, Evil wins. There is no neutral ground in this fight. Dr Jason Lisle has two rules to remember when someone asks you to meet them on "neutral ground"

1. They are not neutral.

2. You shouldn't be.


Freedom is at stake.

Friday, April 23, 2010

When It is Wrong to Point Out Harm

So Franklin Graham was disinvited to the Pentagon for the national day of prayer. I guess I'm not surprised but certainly disappointed.

Read the article at: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/04/21/army-weighs-rescinding-invitation-evangelist/#

His crime or disqualification was to have pointed out that Islam is a religion that has promoted violence and harmful teachings. It seems we have reached a place in our history where it is punishable to point out error or something harmful.

There are consequences to what you believe.

The philosophies and principles that guide a movement or nation determine its success. It is the same for companies. One of my truisms is that the higher your standards are the greater your potential will be. If you found a nation or movement on excellent, proven standards your chances of success will be astronomically higher than starting with poor or nonexistent standards.

Having said that, let me point out the contrast of two very prominent examples. The principles and beliefs that inspired the American Revolution and founding of the U.S., were distinctly Christian. In the very document that began the conflict, we find the principles stated that all men were created equal, and that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights such as life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. These are distinctly Christian in origin and were absolutely novel as principles of self government in world history at the time they were written. (See also Celebrate Liberty and Original Intent chapter 11- Barton.)

The principles and truths that under gird a nation or movement determine its destiny. Christianity provided our Founders with the wisdom to construct this great nation that has met with unrivaled success. The two core principles of Christianity being:

Mat 22:36-40 "Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?" And he said to him, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets." (ESV)



Now consider Nazi Germany for contrast. The principles that inspired Adolf Hitler and his national socialist movement were predominantly from the atheist German philosopher Frederick Nietzsche. He essentially believed that only the strongest deserved to live. The strong had the right to do with the weaker whatever they wished and were obligated to destroy the weakest. Let the most ferocious of nations devour the rest. When you understand this it is no surprise what Adolf Hitler did to Europe in the nineteen thirties and forties. Consider further, Mao Tse Tung, Stalin and Pol Pot. Their under girding, guiding philosophies led to holocausts of political purging. The consequences to what you believe can be severe.

The principles that under gird our nation are vital to its survival too. Christianity has provided us with the means to determine good from evil; good being what is wholesome, evil being what is harmful. This is invaluable (see earlier post dated Oct 2, 2009.) Knowing what is harmful alone is vital to survival. I should add that our guiding Christian principles were vital to the survival and freedom of the nations of Europe and many countries in Asia. We saw evil for what it was and fought against it under the guidance of Good. Millions are alive and free because we did.

It is not wrong or inappropriate to favor the teachings of Christianity over all other philosophies and principles. They have lead us well and are historically the basis for our Founding. Despite popular belief it is not unconstitutional to have a Christian Prayer Service at the seat of our military power, indeed it is necessary. Islam's teachings did not make us great, inspire us to fight Nazism or Imperialistic Japan. Hindu principles do not teach life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness for all or that all men are created equal. Christian principles are what under girded our founding and guided us to greatness.

I implore my fellow countrymen to search the Bible and consider its wisdom and worth for yourselves first hand.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Franklin Graham's Military Unvitation

Some of you may have read of the controversy surrounding Franklin Graham and his invitation to speak at the Day of Prayer service at the Pentagon. The link is:

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/04/21/army-weighs-rescinding-invitation-evangelist/

His response is admirable. He, in essence, points out the way to determine Good from Evil with working definitions of the same. That which damages, diminishes or destroys ones life, health, character, property or potential is a good definition to discern what is evil in regards to businesses, organizations, governments, religions, and philosophies. He does a great job of using this guide to point out what Islam does to the lives of those under its rule. It damages diminishes and destroys the property and potential (at least) of the women under is rule.

Those who volunteer for Islamic rule are free to do so but those who do not choose Islam are not free to leave. The damage of such slavery is incalculable.

I join Franklin Graham in saying I love and wish the best for people of the Muslim religion. I hope for them to have the freedom to leave it if they wish. The freedom to make moral distinctions is something we need to promote and exercise.

Knowing and seeking Good leads to a life well lived to its fullest potential.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Who Can be Trusted with Freedom?

We have come to the place in our history as a nation where those who have been entrusted with its leadership by a free electorate do not trust those who freely elected them with freedom itself.

Can you blame them for questioning our judgement?

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Vitamin E

I need a little Vitamin E(ncouragement) once in a while.

I'm 46. I went to college after high school and finished my BS in Animal Science in 1987. I passed on going to Veterinary College at the time due to burn out. I was working and going to school at the time. I went to work in the medical industry for 8years then was fired. It was traumatic for me at the time. Never been fired. Very humbling. So in 1995 I had to make a decision to either go back to Veterinary School or get another job in the medical industry as a sales rep. It was a big deal for me because I then had 2 children and my wife. I realized if I would ever achieve my dream I had to go back then. I decided to take the risk with my family in tow.

While working a full time job with my father-in-law, I started studying at night for the VAT (Veterinary Aptitude Test), a 5 hour exam that covered a world of knowledge. I did well as it turned out. After 1 1/2 years of preparation I was accepted and started College at age 32. For four years I worked and went to a professional college the extremes of which I can't begin to describe. I did all that I could for my family and my education. It was the hardest thing I have ever done. I felt guilty for putting my family through all the strain for my dream. We lived just above poverty level for 5-6 years because of my choice to sacrifice. The time it took me away from my two girls can never be gotten back. I had myself convinced I would make it up to them later with a higher standard of living because of my education. This is possible in America you know.

After Veterinary College I worked 3 jobs to make my student loan and house payments, one full time and 2 relief work jobs (where a vet substitutes for another who wants to go on vacation.) I was working every day. Then 1 1/2 years after graduating from Vet School I was approached by another Vet to buy his clinic. What a leap of faith it was to take that plunge while I was already in debt more than I could ever have dreamed. I did. I risked everything again to have a chance at financial independence.

If you have ever owned a business you know you don't own a business. It owns you. In 2001 I began the purchase of my practice. I have done all that I could to make it successful while maintaining my relationships with my wife and kids. It has been a never ending series of hoops and obstacles but in 2009 I finished the purchase of the practice. I am still paying off other debt but the practice is finally paid for.

All this has taken its toll on my health and family.

God has a great sense of humor in regard to my life. I look forward to sharing video clips of my hapless life with the rest of you guys in Heaven. I imagine Him watching me and saying to one of the angel, "Hey, come her and watch this." For instance...

In 2008, as you know, Barack Obama was elected to the presidency. It just so happened that he was elected at a rare time in our history when the House of Representatives and the Senate had majorities that would follow him, like possesed pigs, into the sea. Guess what. They want to change the rules to everything. Now after my long, hard, 110% bust my hump, by the rules, risk everything twice slog to some little bit of success I am faced with a new challenge. The never ending change of rules that will "redistribute" the little that I have struggled for. I now have the "priviledge" of improving the lives of those who know nothing of my sacrifices. So much for bettering my life and the lives of those around me who know and have shared in the sacrifices. Wow, tough pill to swallow.

I said all of that to say to you despite the government's aim to punish those who have worked and sacrificed for some wealth, despite the unjust practice of changing the rules in mid game, despite the ruling class attitude, despite the brushing aside of the wishes of the majority and despite the total self gratifying nature of this government they did not change in one wit who I am.

I still believe in fair play. I believe in generosity, charity and the incredible potential of an individual's life. I believe the more a government tries to control life and wealth, the smaller that government will appear and the smaller that government will be in actuality.

I believe a government that thinks its citizens need its benevolence and charity is a government run by petty, narcissistic men who have never known what personal excellence, freedom or true goodness really mean.

I believe in a personal excellence that no government or law can take away, abridge, restrain, direct or control.

I believe in a God who endows those He created with such glorious things as life, liberty and the chance to seek happiness in this world. No government should mess with Him, His plans or try to take His place in the lives of its citizens.

The "new rules" can't touch my affections for my wife. It cannot hold back my love for my children. They cannot keep me from admiring brave and noble men and women whom I own my gratitude.

The "new rules" will not stop me from protesting them, opposing them at every chance, and explaining the grievous injustice of redistributing the benefits of the labors I have poured my life into at great expense to those I love.

This government will not take my integrity, perseverance, generosity, vision and belief that God reigns sovereign over it even when it does not acknowledge Him. Heaven will demonstrate the error of such a government.

I will not surrender, ever, my passion for a free American Society that is a garden for individual excellence. I will not allow it. This administration does not have the power, wisdom nor the equipment to divest my soul of such things. I am the sole owner of these wonderous things and more. This administration will never understand, change, or take them from me.

How about you?

Friday, March 19, 2010

If you saw Glen Beck yesterday you heard him discuss the “Liberty Tree” and that today we are witnesses to a perverted “Liberty Tree” in Washington with corruption running amuck. It has been corrupted by a long running undermining of our morality. He made the point the “Liberty Tree” needs to be replanted with the seed our Founders gave us “Faith, Hope, and Love.” I was watching late and had to say good night before his show was over so I did not hear him actually reference the Bible. The Founders (and he) got those terms or principles from the Bible. I Corinthians chapter 13 is the source for those virtues. It is from Christianity that we get these and hundreds more under girding principle to guide a free society.

His lesson in the “Liberty Tree” agrees with my point that American Freedom is inspired by, built upon, fueled by and sustained by the teachings of the Bible. Its standards are beyond reproach. “Love thy neighbor as thy self,” will save the government coffers billions if we once again acknowledge it, revere it and teach it to our children (“the Bible or the bayonet” I believe was the phrase.)

High standards of Good prevent the need for government enforcement. It also preempts the need for many laws. When you have your neighbor’s interest at heart he will not need to be protected from you. Please, we all want our neighbors to believe in and live by The Ten Commandments (read them and see); not only our neighbors, our doctor, our banker, our chef, our airline pilot, even our lawyer. The Goodness taught by the Bible and Christianity protects everyone. Why would we want its influence removed from our public discourse?

American Freedom, our “Liberty Tree,” was received from God, “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights…life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” If God is the author of our Freedom and we continue to reject God, we assure the loss of American Freedom (the greatest the world has ever known), maybe forever.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

I realize I may be driving this into the ground but the threat to American Freedom is upon us. Not only the financial aspect but the assault on our liberty is becoming a matter of policy for the current administration. We have to own the self-evident truth that we (and all men/women) are created equal and endowed by our Creator with these unalienable rights.

This American Flavor of Freedom cannot survive without Christian Morality. The Founders were certain of this. Even those who were not explicitly Christian believed it i.e. Benjamin Franklin. Without the Christian moral ethic American Freedom does not work. The Founders and early leaders believed that without an inner set of laws to restrain Evil an outer set would be required.

…Holy Scriptures… can alone secure to society, order, and peace, and to the courts of justice and constitutions of government, purity, stability, and usefulness. In vain, without the Bible, we increase penal laws and draw entrenchments around our institutions.- James Mc Henry, Signer of the Constitution (taken from Original Intent-Barton pg 173)

Men, in a word, must necessarily be controlled either by a power within them or by a power without them; either by the Word of God or by the strong arm of man; either by the Bible or the bayonet.- Robert Winthrop, Speaker of the U.S. House 1847-1849 (taken from Original Intent pg 173)

American Freedom has been the greatest the world has ever known because it was disciplined by the highest moral standard, the Bible. If the Bible’s guidance and influence is removed from our society, as we are seeing, freedoms also will be removed. This I’m afraid we are also seeing. Goodness makes real freedom possible. Real freedom guided by Goodness leads to greatness. If we do not revive our commitment to the highest of moral standards i.e, “ Love thy neighbor as thy self,” we will sink into history as a once legendary, great people. Americans I beg you, make this nation great by Goodness and for the sake of Goodness. World Freedom has rested on the shoulders of Americans for two centuries. Our flavor of freedom creates, influences and nurtures the freedom of the world. It’s worth the sacrifices.

Monday, February 22, 2010

American Freedom at Stake cont...

I want to build on this notion of American Freedom. American Freedom is unique and potent but it has some standards that go with it. In order to have the kind of freedom we have enjoyed for over 230 years there are some responsibilities that come with the benefits. Those standards safe guard this liberty.

A large portion of our population has been attacking and nullifying those standards over the last 50-60 years. It has cost us a lot but these standards can be restored. It is called in old terms “revival.”

The Declaration of Independence claimed Freedom as God granted, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” (Emphasis is mine.)

This is a self-evident truth, that God created and intended men to be free. Our Founding Fathers claim to this brand of freedom is uniquely American. America Freedom is based on God’s idea of what real Freedom should look like. Like no other country in the world we have proven the benefits and superiority of this kind of freedom. That is, until we abandoned the responsibilities that come with real freedom.

American men and women of their time and hundreds of thousand since have been willing to die to keep it here. What’s more inspiring is that we have been willing to die to give it to men and women in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and various places all over the world. A taste of, or just hearing about this kind of freedom changes your life forever. No other system in the world will compare after you have enjoyed the opportunity to better yourself and keep the fruit of your labor to help others. Yes, that is part of God given freedom.

God given freedom is under attack. (American freedom is under attack.) The attack was first leveled on those principles that keep freedom strong and available to all. Hard work, self responsibility, and morality that protects you and keeps you from financial dependency have all been under attack without much defense.

I spoke about the uniqueness of American freedom in the last post and quoted two prominent figures in American history. They were not the only ones. It was recognized by all American’s in the early years of our country’s life. Lincoln acknowledged it in his Gettysburg Address:

“Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure.”

That liberty of course is granted by God, the God that the Bible tells us of. This is a critical point because the principles, standards and responsibilities required to maintain this freedom are found in the Bible. They are distinctly Christian. Here is Lincoln again talking about our founding documents and how Americans might look to them in the future (that’s us):

“…[T]hey established these great self-evident truths that… their posterity might look up again to the Declaration of Independence and take courage to renew that battle which their fathers began, so that truth and justice and mercy and all humane and Christian virtues might not be extinguished from the land…Now, my countryman, if you have been taught doctrines conflicting with the great landmarks of the Declaration of Independence…let me entreat you to come back…[C]ome back to the truths that are in the Declaration of Independence.” (Taken from Original Intent Barton pg 250.)

May I ask the same? I beg you in coming days when the financial crisis is in full bloom remember this. We don’t need a new form of freedom. We need a renewal of our original freedom with the responsibilities of it, renewal of our claim to the unalienable kind granted to us by God. This is the foundation of real freedom. It is the foundation of American freedom. The experience of this variety of freedom convicts us that we ought to keep it at all costs and that other men ought to have it too.

God is the author of the freedom our Founders tapped into. The principles in the Bible tell us how to keep it. Our Founders understood this and laid the foundation for the greatest country in the history of the world with Its guidance. We simply must return to the study of these principles.

The ability to discern Good from Evil is found there and we cannot maintain real freedom without this ability. What would American freedom be apart from God and Goodness? It would be the same as the "freedom" the French experienced in the French Revolution; Anarchy that consumed itself. It knew no guide for discerning Good and Evil.

May God bless and keep us free.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

American Freedom at Stake

Dark clouds are rolling in on American History. I was watching Glenn Beck this week and he scared the beans out of me in regard to our national debt. We have made the leap into the trillions with a recklessness that is destined to do great harm. There will be an accounting for this irresponsible spending.

With this reckoning American affluence is certain to fall. I’m afraid you only learn what a trillion dollars is when you try to pay it back. This is tragic.

With this said I want to remind you of who you are. Our affluence has deceived us over the last 100 years. We Americans have come to trust in our affluence. But our Founding Fathers were wiser than to trust in wealth. Proverbs 23:5 tell us that wealth “sprouts wings, flying like an eagle toward heaven.” (They also knew better than to trust in politicians or government. Your can take that route if you like but if you haven’t already experienced a crushing disappointment you will.) The Founders pointed the way for us, if only we will listen. They had some wealth there is no doubt, but they knew better than to trust in it. Let me quote from the summary paragraph of the Declaration of Independence. After a long list of reasons for separating from England they pronounced:

We therefore the Representatives of the Unites States of America, in general Congress assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the name and by the authority of the good people of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare that these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown and that all political connections between them and the State of Great Britain is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as free and independent States, they have full power to levy war, conclude peace, contract alliance, establish commerce, and do all other acts and things which independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.
(Emphasis is mine.)

David Barton points out in his Original Intent that the Declaration of Independence was actually a dual declaration. They declared our independence from Great Britain and our dependence on God.

In this time of financial peril I should point out that they mentioned their wealth as a support to this Declaration. They put their wealth on the line for their freedom. Wealth is not the most important thing. Remember this in the coming months. Losing ones wealth is not the worst thing that could happen to you. They knew. Wealth is better to be sacrificed than be saved at the cost of ones principles.

You may have to make this choice very soon. The choice between financial stability and freedom is upon us now. We have already made the wrong choice to a large degree in letting the Federal Government prop up failed businesses that are failing for obvious reasons. In doing this we are printing trillions of dollars to dump into unhealthy businesses. Companies that are able to lose millions are very capable of losing billions. Stop. Short term financial stability is going to cost us our freedom. Stop trillion dollar deficits now.

It may already be too late. If it is, remember who you are. You are Americans. We have the recipe for real, lasting freedom. With some corrections in the power we allow our government we can renew this special experiment that has been a blessing to the world. Freedom as the world knows it was conceived, birthed and reared here. John Quincy Adams mentions this special variety of Freedom in a speech he gave on the Fourth of July 1837, “The position thus assumed by this One People consisting of thirteen free and independent states was new in the history of the world… This was a novelty in the moral philosophy of nations and it is the essential difference between the system of government announced in the Declaration of Independence and those systems which had until then prevailed among men.” (Celebrate Liberty David Barton pg 203) as does Daniel Webster in an 1851 speech, “I have said gentlemen, that our inheritance is an inheritance of American liberty. That liberty is characteristic, peculiar, and altogether our own.”(Celebrate Liberty David Barton pg 157.) The liberty we know is born from the conviction that all men are created equally and endowed by their Creator with unalienable rights…life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness... Our freedom is not granted by the Constitution but by God. We were the first among nations to lay claim to that Freedom for all of our citizens. Don’t ever forget it. In dark days that may be ahead, never forget this. If Freedom dies in America, where we have truly understood it, the world will sink into a very dark place.

It’s time we renewed our commitment to the second part of the dual declaration in the Declaration of Independence… a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence… Let's start the renewal in our relationship with God and discover what pleases Him as we ask for His favor.