Ministry is discouragement

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I oftentimes tell people that ministry is discouragement. My point, in saying this, is not to suggest that ministry is only and always discouraging. There are, to be sure, times of great encouragement and blessing in ministry. Praise God that it is so! There are times when we know that God is evidently using us, when we see Him visibly blessing our labors or when we see people growing in their faith like never before. There are times when we serve and see a great deal of visible fruit. My point is not to deny or make light of any of these things. My point is simply to say that ministry forces us to face discouragement, to learn to minister through it and even to rejoice in it–and not just once or twice but continually over the course of our lives. Whatever else we may face in ministry, we can be assured that we will face discouragement. It is a constant. And that is why I oftentimes say that ministry is discouragement.Sometimes discouragement in ministry comes from outward opposition. Trials and tribulations, losses and crosses, and mistreatment and persecution can definitely catch us by surprise and wear us down, to be sure. But I have found that the far greater problem comes not from the outward opposition but from one of two kinds of inward opposition. On the one hand, many of us–probably all of us–struggle with being content with the person God has made us to be. We don’t like ourselves or our gifts and abilities. We want a different set of gifts than the one God has given us, or we want the gifts that we have in greater quantities and proportions than God has given us. If we are a 1-talent preacher (à la Matthew 25:14-30), for example, we want to be a 2-talent preacher instead; and if we are a 2-talent preacher, we want to be a 5-talent preacher instead. And so it goes. We struggle with ourselves, with being the people God has made us to be.I once heard John Piper say in one of his biographical studies that we are all our own greatest trials; and, I think that is unquestionably true. Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 15:10 just may be the most difficult words to say about ourselves in the whole of the Bible: “By the grace of God I am what I am.” Far too often we want someone else’s gifts and someone else’s life and ministry. We struggle believing 1 Corinthians 15:10, and, as a result, we struggle with discouragement in our ministries.On the other hand, many of us–again, probably all of us–also struggle with our own perceptions of our usefulness in ministry. No matter how gifted we are, we tend to lose sight of the big picture of what God is doing in and through us. We lose sight of it in the messy details of every day ministry–the marriage breakups, the family dysfunction, the destructive consequences of addiction and abuse, and the difficulties of ongoing conflict and strife. This leads inevitably to discouragement. We do not see what the Lord is doing through the mess of life and ministry. We do not perceive that He is doing much of anything with all our sacrifices and investments of energy and time.Sometimes this struggle is the greatest for those who are the most gifted among us. Sometimes less gifted men receive more encouragement because we sense that they need it more, and so less gifted men may labor with a clearer perception of their usefulness in ministry. More gifted ministers, however, sometimes receive little or no encouragement, simply because we think that they hear it from everyone and that it wouldn’t mean anything to them to hear it from us as well. So they frequently go through their ministries with less encouragement and, consequently, less of a sense that God is using them and blessing their ministries when He actually is using them and blessing them quite significantly.It certainly was that way for the great Scottish preacher Samuel Rutherford. A great preacher in an age known for great preachers, Rutherford struggled mightily with discouragement throughout his ministry. He regularly complained of having little or no sense of God’s blessing upon him and his labors. At one point, he believed that the church was about to close down on account of all the resistance he was experiencing. Even after almost a decade of what was actually a very successful ministry, he looked back in discouragement and bemoaned the fact that he “had done little good.” He couldn’t see the big picture of what God was doing in and through him; the daily difficulties of ministry got in the way, and he struggled with discouragement because of it.So what do we do with this kind of discouragement? How do we keep on ministering through it? And how do we rejoice in the midst of it, as Paul calls us to do in passages like 1 Thessalonians 5:16? In answering these questions and dealing with my own discouragements, I have found help from several passages that remind me of the tremendous privileges that God has given me. He has not given me (or you either) the basically fruitless ministry that He gave to the prophet Isaiah, whose ministry was to be characterized by hardening the hearts of the people and blinding their eyes so that they would not turn to the Lord (Isaiah 6:9-10). Praise God that He has given us some visible fruit to encourage us in our labors. Even if it is less than others see, it is still more than Isaiah saw in his lifetime.I also strive to remind myself that everything I am and have has been given to me by the Lord (1 Corinthians 4:7; 15:10). He has given me the parents that I have; the personality, drive, and abilities; the education and experiences; the health and the wealth; the opportunities and audiences; everything. He has made me for a specific sphere of ministry, and He has equipped me for it. And He does all things very well.But, most especially, I strive to remind myself continually that my joy is found in Jesus and not in the things of this world–not in my health or wealth, not in my accomplishments or successes, not in my gifts and abilities, not in what people think of me, or how many people read or listen to me. My joy is in Jesus, because God made Him who knew no sin to be sin for me so that I might become the righteousness of God in Him (2 Corinthians 5:21). My joy is in Jesus, because there is no condemnation for all those who are in Christ (Romans 8:1). My joy is in Jesus, because God is for me in Christ; and if God is for me forevermore, then no one and no thing can ever really be against me (Romans 8:31ff).

Guy M. Richard is the Senior Minister of First Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Gulfport, MS. He is a graduate of Auburn University (B.I.E.), Reformed Theological Seminary (M.Div.), and the University of Edinburgh (Ph.D.). He has published two books, What is Faith? (2012) and The Supremacy of God in the Theology of Samuel Rutherford (2009), in addition to several other articles in various books and journals. You can follow Guy on Twitter at @GuyMRicchard.
POSTED AUGUST 23, 2016 @ 1:46 PM BY GUY RICHARD

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5 Lies Every Single Christian Believes

I got engaged earlier this month. I surprised Denise on vacation in Florida with a ring and the question and she said “yes.” We’re months away from our wedding day, and we’re both overflowing with joy. The Proverb is true: “A desire fulfilled is sweet to the soul” (Proverbs 13:19). But it wasn’t always this […]

Source: 5 Lies Every Single Christian Believes

Krauthammer’s Take: Putin Ready to Move, “Sees Weakness in the White House” —

Krauthammer’s Take: Putin Ready to Move, “Sees Weakness in the White House”, Fox News via YouTube, August 13, 2016 (Please see also, Europe’s armies are dysfunctional. –DM)

via Krauthammer’s Take: Putin Ready to Move, “Sees Weakness in the White House” —

Does anyone know the answer to any of these questions?????

Obama Mystery

(including the daughters)

These are certainly valid questions.

 

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Has the entire country been duped?
Well, he’s ending 8 years of living in the White House
THE UNANSWERED MYSTERY OF THE CENTURY!!!
This came from a union guy in Chicago who didn’t vote for Obama. Very interesting perspective that I never thought of in this light.
It will be interesting to see what they put in his “Library” about his early years when he is out of office.
In a country where we take notice of many, many facets of our public figures’ lives, doesn’t it seem odd that there’s so little we know about our current man in the WH, Barack Hussein Obama?
For example, we know that Andrew Jackson’s wife smoked a corn cob pipe and was accused of adultery; Abe Lincoln never went to school; Jack Kennedy wore a back brace; Harry Truman played the piano.
As Americans, we enjoy knowing details about our news makers, but none of us know one single humanizing fact about the history of our own president.
We are all aware of the lack of uncontestable birth records for Obama; that document managing has been spectacularly successful.
There are however, several additional oddities in Obama’s history that appear to be as well managed as the birthing issue.
One other interesting thing… There are no birth certificates of his daughters that can be found?
It’s interesting that no one who ever dated him has shown up. The charisma that caused women to be drawn to him so strongly during his campaign, certainly would in the normal course of events, lead some lady to come forward, if only to garner some attention for herself. We all know about JFK’s magnetism, that McCain was no monk and quite a few details about Palin’s courtship and even her athletic prowess, Joe Biden’s aneurisms are no secret; look at Cheney and Clinton, we all know about their heart problems. Certainly Wild Bill Clinton’s exploits before and during his White House years, were well known. That’s why it’s so odd that not one lady has stepped up and said, “He was soooo shy…” or “What a great dancer…”
It’s virtually “impossible” to know anything about this fellow. Who was the best man at his wedding? Start there. Then check groomsmen.
Then get the footage of the graduation ceremony. Has anyone talked to the professors? It is odd that no one is bragging that they knew him or taught him or lived with him.
When did he meet Michele, and how? Are there photos there? Every president gives to the public all their photos, etc. For their library, etc. What has he released? And, who voted for him to be the most popular man in 2010? Doesn’t this make you wonder?
Ever wonder why no one ever came forward from Obama’s past saying they knew him, attended school with him, was his friend, etc?? Not one person has ever come forward from his past.
It certainly is very, very strange…
This should be a cause for great concern. To those who voted for him, you may have elected an unqualified, inexperienced shadow man. Have you seen a movie named “The Manchurian Candidate”
As insignificant as each of us might be, someone with whom we went to school will remember our name or face; someone will remember we were the clown or the dork or the brain or the quiet one or the bully or something about us.
George Stephanopoulos of ABC News said the same thing during the 2008 campaign. He questions why no one has acknowledged that Barack was in their classroom or ate in the same cafeteria or made impromptu speeches on campus. Stephanopoulos also was a classmate of Obama at Columbia — the class of 1984. “He says he never had a single class with him”.

He is such a great orator; why doesn’t anyone in Obama’s college class remember him? Why won’t he allow Columbia to release his records?
Nobody remembers Obama at Columbia University…
Looking for evidence of Obama’s past, Fox News contacted 400 Columbia University students from the period when Obama claims to have been there… But none remembered him.
Wayne Allyn Root was, like Obama, a political science major at Columbia who also graduated in 1983. In 2008, Root says of Obama, “I don’t know a single person at Columbia that knew him, and they all know me. I don’t have a classmate who ever knew Barack Hussein Obama at Columbia, ever.”
Nobody recalls him. Root adds that he was also, like Obama, Class of ’83 Political Science, and says, “You don’t get more exact or closer than that. Never met him in my life, don’t know anyone who ever met him. At class reunion, our 20th reunion five years ago, who was asked to be the speaker of the class? Me. No one ever heard of Barack! And five years ago, nobody even knew who he was. The guy who writes the class notes, who’s kind of the, as we say in New York, ‘the macha’ who knows everybody, has yet to find a person, a human who ever met him.”
Obama’s photograph does not appear in the school’s yearbook and Obama consistently declines requests to talk about his years at Columbia, provide school records, or provide the name of any former classmates or friends while at Columbia .
Some other interesting questions:
Why was Obama’s law license inactivated in 2002? It is said there is no record of him ever taking the Bar exam.
Why was Michelle’s law license inactivated by court order? We understand that was forced to avoid fraud charges.
It is circulating that according to the U.S. Census, there is only one Barack Hussein Obama, but 27 Social Security numbers and over 80 alias connected to him.
The Social Security number he uses now originated in Connecticut where he is reported to have never lived. And was originally registered to another man (Thomas Louis Wood) from Connecticut, who died in Hawaii while on vacation there. As we all know, Social Security Numbers are only issued ‘once, they are not reused’ No wonder all his records are sealed…
Please continue sending this out. Somewhere, someone has to know SOMETHING!?!… School? Before he reorganized Chicago?… SOMETHING!!! He just seemed to burst upon the Scene at the 2004 Democratic Convention. ANYONE??? ANYWHERE??? ANYTHING???

If He Does Not Love Jesus, He Will Not Love You

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Jesus gave us the first and greatest commandment in

Matthew 22:36–40:

Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.

We know God should come first, whether we’re married, single, or dating. But how do we put God first when we are falling in love with someone else — when it’s not “just me and Jesus” anymore?

http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/if-he-does-not-love-jesus-he-will-not-love-you

So you want to be a pro-choice Christian? Here’s what you need.

Allow me to begin by saying that this is not a post about politics, although, it certainly does have major implications for political platforms. We have public figures at all levels of our governme…

Source: So you want to be a pro-choice Christian? Here’s what you need.

Our mission is to stop Hillary. She’s bad for America and our future. Never Trumpers need to STOP being sore-losers!

Far too many of my ultra-conservative colleagues are acting exactly like the party elitists they purport to despise. They didn’t get their way, so they throw a temper tantrum. Let the whining and crying begin. I don’t have time for it. I beg of you, get over it.

I’m tired of reading how the Republican Party is now “screwed.” Another headline warns, “It’s Time to Assume We’re Already Dead.” Give me a break! The Tea Party movement is alive and well here in Texas and beyond.

Ted Cruz lost. Donald Trump won. They both played by the rules. That’s how a campaign works. We have winners and losers. Instead of moving on and backing the chosen nominee, these anti-American Never Trumpers now want to scream and moan about how stupid the American voters are. It’s an arrogant response that sounds eerily similar to John Boehner and Mitch McConnell’s response after the rise of the Tea Party. They even sound like my seven-year-old son when I told him he could not have two cookies. He looked at me and pouted, “Then I don’t want any!”

Stop Being Sore Losers

This goes for you too, Speaker Ryan. You may not like it, but Trump is the boss now. It’s his party to lead. Ryan claims Trump “inherited” the party of Lincoln and Reagan. In reality, Trump won it in decisive fashion. The Never Trumpers like Ryan refuse to talk about reality. Trump has already surpassed 10 million votes. That’s more than Mitt Romney’s primary vote total from 2012 as well as John McCain’s from 2008.

I too see the reality of Trump. He’s no conservative. But right now, he’s all we have.

By the time this contest is over, “The Donald” could surpass 11 million votes, beating George Bush’s 10.8 million vote record set in 2000. Ronald Reagan only got 7.7 million votes in the GOP primary in 1980.

Clearly the GOP voters have spoken. Sadly, they aren’t as conservative as I thought. I too see the reality of Trump. He’s no conservative. But right now, he’s all we have.

Republicans like myself have always been proud of being the party of “the rule of law.” Apparently for Ryan and the Never Trump movement, that changes when they don’t get their way. We held an election; it was a fair contest.

Get Your Eye on the Prize, People

Now Ryan wants Trump to prove his allegiance to the conservative movement. By holding back a full-fledged endorsement, Ryan is actively working to destroy America by helping Hillary Clinton. Ryan wants Trump to kiss his conservative ring and plead for an endorsement. Ryan needs to grow up and stop acting like a spoiled rich kid who didn’t get what he cried for: a nominee like Jeb Bush.

Ryan needs to look at the reality of the situation we now face.

I may not be a huge Trump fan, but he is our presumptive nominee. I, like most conservatives, am not a fan of Ryan either. Trump needs to play hardball with Ryan and “The Establishment.” Trump purports to be a “deal maker.” He needs to realize he is operating from a position of strength, much to the dismay of GOP leadership. Trump and the Ryan Establishment both need each other now more than ever. Trump needs their money and support, they need Trump to win back the White House to help roll back President Obama’s damaging agenda.

After last week’s Trump-Ryan unity summit, Ryan needed to tell GOP voters that he too would vote for Trump. Instead, he played the go-to game for politicians and dodged the issue all together. By not offering his full-fledged support now, Ryan is guilty of a dereliction of duty to ensure Republicans win back the White House. Ryan needs to look at the reality of the situation we now face.

Hillary Is Horrible

Trump is certainly flawed. He’s not my kind of conservative. But he’s no liberal, either. He wants to build a border wall, beef up our military, simplify the tax code, and appoint a “Scalia-like” Supreme Court nominee. Would Hillary Clinton do any of those things? No! We only have two choices for president. We must pick the better of the two. It really is that simple.

My mission is to stop Hillary Clinton. She’s bad for America and our future. These ridiculous Never Trumpers need to get on board the Trump train now. A no vote, or a nonsensical protest vote for someone other than Trump, is a vote for Hillary Clinton. That’s disastrous.

The prospect of a Clinton presidency leaves me losing my patience with Ryan and the leaders of the Never Trump movement. I find them to be arrogant know-it-alls who may be more narcissistic than Trump. They used the Tea Party movement to help them rise to power. Now, just like the Ryan “Establishment,” they seek to control the outcome of the election. They will stop at nothing to get their way. In defeat, they act like spoiled children, not the fighters we need to help rally the conservative troops.

Iran: $400 Million In Cash Was Part of ‘Expensive Price’ to Free U.S. Hostages —

Iran: $400 Million In Cash Was Part of ‘Expensive Price’ to Free U.S. Hostages, Washington Free Beacon, Adam Kredo, August 5, 2016 (Please see also, OBAMA LIED! US-Iranian Hostage Says Iran Would Not Let Plane Leave Until Ransom Plane Arrived. — DM) Iranian television has broadcast what some say is purported footage of the $400 million […]

via Iran: $400 Million In Cash Was Part of ‘Expensive Price’ to Free U.S. Hostages —

Black Lives Matter Demands Reparations, Free College and Money ” For Black People” —

Black Lives Matter Demands Reparations, Free College and Money ” For Black People” Front Page Magazine, Daniel Greenfield, August 2, 2016 BLM has produced its policy agenda and it’s predictably chock full of reparations demands. The agenda uses typical black nationalist language because that’s what BLM always was. There are demands for, “full and free […]

via Black Lives Matter Demands Reparations, Free College and Money ” For Black People” —

An Open Letter to Hillary Clinton About Black Babies

Is it all politics, or does Hillary understand the incongruity of her statements on black babies?

 

By MICHAEL BROWN Published on July 20, 2016

I know that you and Mr. Clinton have been considered real friends of the African-American community to the point that, before President Obama’s election, your husband was jokingly referred to as the nation’s first black president.

I also know that you have identified proudly as an “old fashioned Methodist” and that you warmly welcomed a contingent of African-American pastors who laid hands on you and anointed you as the next president. It is against this backdrop that I write this letter to you.

Speaking on July 18th to the NAACP convention, you said, “Right now, black kids are 500 percent more likely to die from asthma than white kids. 500 percent. Right now a black baby in South Carolina is twice as likely to die before her first birthday as a white baby. Imagine if those numbers were reversed and it were white kids dying. Imagine the outcry and the resources that would flood in.”

You’ve made similar claims before regarding black kids dying of asthma, and last year, Politifact.com checked on the accuracy of your statement and found you may have actually underestimated the statistics. That’s truly distressing to hear, and I appreciate you bringing this to the attention of the nation. Whatever we can do to address that disparity, we need to.

But it’s the second statement that especially got my attention, namely, that “a black baby in South Carolina is twice as likely to die before her first birthday as a white baby.” That too is distressing to hear, and, if accurate, must be addressed.

But what about black babies inside the womb? How can you have so much compassion on those precious lives outside the womb and so little compassion for them within their mother’s belly? How can you affirm that black lives matter and then be the darling of Planned Parenthood, one of the greatest takers of black lives in history?

In the words of Ryan Bomberger, “Planned Parenthood kills more unarmed black lives in one day than police are accused of killing in one entire year. (These Planned Parenthood-caused deaths of black unarmed lives in the womb amount to 266 a day, which is 30% — the percentage of the nation’s abortions among blacks — of the 323,999 abortions that generates over $200 million annually for the abortion chain.)”

In case you don’t know Ryan, he’s African-American, and he was conceived when his mother was raped. Yet she didn’t terminate her pregnancy, giving him up for adoption instead. I believe he can speak to this issue with some authority — or do you think he would have been better off killed in the womb? Given, then, your fervent support of Planned Parenthood, I must cry foul when you say to the NAACP audience “a black baby in South Carolina is twice as likely to die before her first birthday as a white baby.”

One pro-life website, drawing on data from the pro-abortion Alan Gutmacher Institute and from the Centers for Disease Control, provided some shocking, painful, data. May I ask you to read this with your heart and mind open before? These are devastating statistics. Out of the more than one million abortions per year, “the African-American community bears a disproportionate number of these abortions. Although blacks make up 13% of the US population, black women have some 36% of the abortions. A Black baby is 5 times more likely to be killed in the womb than a White Baby.”

Does this matter to you? Will you decry the fact that, in South Carolina, a black baby is half as likely to reach its first birthday as a white baby while ignoring the fact that nationwide, a black baby is one-fifth as likely to make it out of the womb as a white baby — and that by the choice of the mother and the help of local abortion providers?

This same pro-life website also states that:

  • Some 3,446 Blacks were lynched in the U.S. between 1882 and 1968, That number is surpassed in less than 3 days by abortion.
  • Since 1973, abortion has wiped out over 25% of the African-American population

This is nothing less than black genocide, yet rather than oppose it, you celebrate a woman’s “right to choose” and support policies that lead to more abortions, not less. You even acknowledge that the baby in the womb is a “person,” yet claim that it has no constitutional rights. How can this be?

According to the BlackGenocide.com website, since 1973, the combined total of African-American deaths by AIDS, violent crimes, accidents, cancer, and heart disease is close to 6.5 million. In stark contrast, since 1973, African American deaths by abortion amount to more than 15.5 million. Mrs. Clinton, how can you be a lover of black Americans without standing against this genocide?

And as an “old fashioned Methodist,” can you give me one clear text in the Bible that supports the idea that the child in the womb is not a real person? Don’t the sacred Scriptures speak of God forming us carefully in the womb (e.g., Psalm 139:13), also attributing personhood to unborn babies to the point that they can even respond to things taking place outside the womb (e.g., Luke 1:41)?

With all respect, can you cite for me one scripture (or even one statement from Methodist founder John Wesley) that points to a woman’s “right” to choose abortion? And will you reject the recent pro-life shift in your own Methodist Church?

I know you have held to these positions for decades, and they form a central part of your political and personal history. But for the sake of black babies everywhere, I appeal to you before God to reconsider your ways.

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Trump / Pence 2016

You might be a Conservative if …

A number of times I’ve heard Conservative leaders indicate a dire need to educate the American public about the current status of the political system in the US. The Party of JFK, for instance, is not Obama’s party. Neither is the party of Sen. McCain, the party of most Republicans. Party lines have been skewed … or blurred … or even erased in favor of self-interest.

In light of this mass confusion or mis-identification, some questions are listed below to clarify the mis-information espoused by the media and those pushing to deceive the American people for selfish gain.

So, without further ado, YOU might really be a Conservative if

  1. you think our federal, state, and local governments ought to be required to formulate a budget and stick to it … Period! (just like you and me!)
  2. you understand government is hired by the People, and must answer to the People for their policies, decisions, and actions.
  3. you know ALL humans are greedy, not just the rich.
  4. you think a “Fair Tax” (or flat tax) is the most equitable way to tax the nation. It’s simple and fair!
  5. you there are many types of intelligence, most of which can not be well measured!
  6. you think any individual’s greatest personal treasure is his/her dignity.
  7. you understand that every human being needs a purpose, a reason to live, and that most find that in work and family.
  8. you know that the earth has “seasons” for various things, and that while the earth is actually cooling, it has nothing to do with “greenhouse gases,” which are actually Carbon dioxide – what you and I exhale and what green plants ingest. You also understand that things like “green” electric cars must be plugged in, and therefore actually use MORE fossil fuel while claiming to be “green friendly.” It’s all a scam!
  9. you appreciate the benefits of living in a nation enriched by a multitude of cultures imported by legal immigrants.
  10. you know Jesus taught “personal responsibility,” not “personal entitlement!”
  11. you wonder where all the bra-burning feminists are when it comes to the growing college interest in radical Islam that enslaves women.
  12. you favor the Constitutional rights of the individual over the assumed “good” of the “collective.”
  13. you think greed has corrupted corporate America, but also government and the Unions, and only a free market can hope to counter greed’s effects.
  14. you know that even when it’s rainy and overcast, the sun is still shining!
  15. you understand a universal moral code is necessary for a civilization to thrive.
  16. you remember the days when neighbors actually knew one another, helped one another, and accepted our differences, instead of suspecting them of any number of crimes.
  17. you understand that “political correctness” is just another word for censorship!
  18. you’ve been a convenience store clerk, a school teacher, a soldier, a mother, and never been on welfare even though it might be more … politically correct.
  19. you think most Hollywood celebs would be much better actors (and people) if they remembered what it felt like to struggle.
  20. you question the message of both Lenin and Lennon!
  21. you understand that making welfare a lifestyle is not HELP, but just another name for slavery.
  22. you believe in the “Hand up,” but not the “Hand out!” For something to have value, it must cost something.
  23. you want our federal government to STOP sending money and weapons to those who are NOT our allies.
  24. you believe all individuals are created equal under the Law, that each individual has the right to pursue his/her life according to his/her dreams, values, and goals as long as they don’t infringe someone else’s right to the same.
  25. you believe we are all different, uniquely gifted and valuable to society.
  26. you believe it is impossible to create an education system that will produce only “successful” students.
  27. you adhere to the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
  28. you are willing to fight to maintain the Right to bear arms in defense of yourself, your property, and your Constitution.
  29. you think education’s role is to equip students to consider options and think for themselves rather than program them how to think.
  30. you think the purpose of government is to facilitate the ability of the People to pursue their individual life, liberty, and happiness.

The Contempt Obama and Clinton Have For America

danmillerinpanama

The contempt for America held by Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama rivals that of Black Lives Matter, The New Black Panther Party, The Nation of Islam, The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and similar Islamist groups. Obama has tried to remake America in His own foul image. Now Hillary wants Her turn. Will we give it to Her?

Hillary and Barry

In the following video, Michael Cutler speaks about the Obama-Clinton contempt for America. Rather than try to summarize the points Mr. Cutler makes, I’ll let the video speak for itself.

Leadership comes from the top, and the leadership that Obama has provided has been deadly to America.

As noted by Sheriff Clarke, Obama has been a powerful force for the racial polarization of America. The Dallas shooting gave Him a splendid opportunity to ramp up the polarization.

Judge Jeanine’s favorable comments about Black Lives Matter reflect common misconceptions, which I had shared…

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We have a deep crisis of the soul that is killing us morally and we have no recourse. We have no recourse because the only cure has been disparaged and mocked by the elite and the powerful.

By RAVI ZACHARIAS Published on July 3, 20166 Comments

Years ago, Francis Schaeffer and C. Everett Koop penned their book, Whatever Happened to the Human Race? It was a book that warned of the decisions that were being made within a culture stepping into new and terrifying terrain. They saw clearly where we were headed. We are now there.

I narrow that title down to what is happening on the home front here in America.

Listening to the blistering political rhetoric, I am asked all over the world, “What has happened in America?” The question should go deeper. Whatever happened to the American soul? We are truly at the cliff’s precipitous edge and the fall could be long and deadly. Why? We have a deep crisis of the soul that is killing us morally and we have no recourse. We have no recourse because the only cure has been disparaged and mocked by the elite and the powerful. And those very ideologies are now presiding over the slaughter of our citizens while the abundance of speeches is inversely proportional to the wisdom they contain and Reason bleeds to death before our eyes.

These may be strong words but I am staggered by all that is happening around us while the powerful fiddle and bodies litter the floors of offices, airports and even restaurants. How many families will be shattered and offered up at the altar of our foolishness?

Three Killings

Let me connect some dots to trace where the real killing is happening. Dare I say a kind of genocide stares us in the face? Genocide is defined as the mass killing of a particular group of people. I have started to ask myself whether genocide is the first step towards mass murder or has a kind of mass murder already taken place before we experience genocide and the mangled bodies? I propose to you that multiple killings have preceded the horrors with which we now live. Those killings prepared the ground for the literal burial of our own people.

Three killings in particular are as real as the carnage we see when suicide vests are detonated: the death of morality, the death of truth and the death of reason. With such tragic exterminations, we now find ourselves in ever-present danger, constantly lectured to by those who have all the bodyguards they and their families need while the rest of us are sitting ducks for evil people whose rights are protected more than those of their slaughtered victims. Why is this happening? We are at war but not only with an enemy. We are at war within our own culture, and whether we will ever win over the enemy depends on whether we win this war within our own souls.

The Prince of Lawyers

At first, how I connect these dots may seem far-fetched, but they are indeed connected. Some time ago Robert Shapiro, the well-known lawyer of the famed O.J. Simpson trial, was being interviewed by Megyn Kelly of Fox News. She asked if justice had been served in that case. In a mind-stupefying, pathetic answer, he said, “There is legal justice and moral justice. Legal justice was served.” Maybe it was rightly called the trial of the century: We have entered the twenty-first century having amputated law from morality. Welcome to the uncivil civilization legalizing murder.

That an intelligent, educated, supposedly legal scholar can make a statement like that and think he has defended a noble cause is fatal to our culture. Maybe that’s why Shakespeare described Satan as “the prince of lawyers.” If that’s what legal theory espouses we are in great peril.

I have no doubt many an honorable lawyer cringed at that response but probably none was shocked. This is where law has drifted and come unhinged from any moral moorings. When justice is decapitated and something can be legal but immoral, we know we have already killed the heart of what it means to be human.

The morality of the beast is now normal. Is it any wonder that Nazi judges felt they were doing the “right thing” by upholding their legal prerogative that resulted in the death of millions? Our society is being dragged towards the morgue because the law has held the gun to the heart of morality.

Morality and Truth Divorced

Ironically, there was something in his response to be applauded. At least he granted there was such a thing as moral justice. So that leads to a deeper question: Should not Morality and Truth be inextricably bound together? That is at the heart of all judgments. What is the truth when a person is killed? But now, I dare say, not only does morality not matter, the truth doesn’t matter either. That has also been buried.

If you want a snapshot of our times, here it is: Four brave Americans serving their country murdered by a bunch of hate-filled thugs, whose ideology we are not allowed to identify, received and presided over by a litany of lies, their bodies draped in the national flag, while assurance is given to the bereaved that the culprits will be hunted down, including the one because of whom they were killed. If that scenario doesn’t drive us to our knees, Lord have mercy!

We are in the graveyard of a culture when a most somber moment cannot compel the conscience to tell the truth. Oh, that the victims could have sat up for just a moment and stared down that heinous lie! But it was not to be. One day it will be so as their blood cries out from the ground. As Malcolm Muggeridge said, “The lie is stuck like a fish bone in the throat of the handheld microphone. … Truth has died, not God.”

The noble thing to have done when that blunder was made was to admit a failure for whatever reason and ask for pardon, but not to bury the dead with a lie! As if it is not dark enough for a handful to tell a lie, even worse, in our culture today the lie is no longer a posture to be shunned. We celebrate power over truth, enshrouding the lie with our flag. That is a form of national murder. You see, a blunder is a momentary reality. Upholding a lie is a character flaw, sending that lie into eternity.

The Death of Reason

The death of morality, the death of truth; then we come to the last, the death of reason. Aristotle reminded us that the first law of logic is identity. We must identify what we are talking about. A particular identifiable characteristic is indispensable to the referent. We must identify the characteristics of the thing we define. That is necessary to understanding the thing and to resisting contradiction. But as destroyers enter our lands and desire to pillage and kill, we are led by rhetoric that kills the first law of logic, the law of identity.

We are told that identifying the enemy is not that important; strange that the same logic is not employed to all other local inimical ideologies but only seems to apply to Islam. Honest Muslims themselves wish to call it for what it is but our clever linguistic sleight of hand seems to restrict us from such identity — and so we bury our dead without identifying why the killer killed them.

First, we try to mitigate our peril by this incredible new coinage, “radicalized,” that conveniently shifts the blame from the active shooter to the remote controller. Now we don’t even wish to identify what controls the remote controller. Propaganda that kills identity is deadly to the soul of a culture.

We are sliding into the future with evil stalking us but no morality, no truth and no reason to guide us. America may be flirting with a self-inflicted mortal wound. Or it could well be a killing that is designed by a postmodern ideology masquerading as political correctness.

When liberalism, whose legitimate child is relativism, has played itself out it will be a Pyrrhic victory to find ourselves in the hands of those whose identity is no longer in doubt. And when they are in control, the very means they used to hide their identity will be silenced as well. They will preside over the last rites of politically correct enforcers and a “free press” that abused freedom and celebrated the lie ‘til they themselves were silenced, buried by the truth they never wanted to expose.

The One True Hope for Rescue

There always has been, and is now more than ever, only one hope for rescue. If we abide in God’s truth revealed in his Son, then we shall know the truth and the truth will set us free. That is why I say again and again that we must dispense with our verbal arsenal that speaks only in terms of right and left. We have forgotten there is an up and a down.

May God help us! We need His transforming power to change our thinking and to give us a hunger for what is true. True freedom is not in doing whatever we wish but in doing what we ought. That has been buried in America. And only one who knows the way out of the grave can give us a second chance to live: Jesus, the way, the truth and the life that sets us free from within first, before we learn to deal with the lies around us.

As my prayer for this July 4th, I think of the great hymn by Isaac Watts prayed often in moments of drastic transition. I have added a fourth verse for our times.

Our God, our Help in ages past,
Our Hope for years to come,
Our Shelter from the stormy blast,
And our eternal Home!

Under the shadow of Thy throne
Thy saints have dwelt secure;
Sufficient is Thine arm alone,
And our defense is sure.

Before the hills in order stood
Or earth received her frame,
From everlasting Thou art God,
To endless years the same.

We need thee now as ne’er before,
We mourn the wisdom gone;
Transform our land forevermore —
Redemption through your Son.

Thank God for Spiritual Grandfathers THOUGHTS ON WAYNE GRUDEM

A few months ago, Tim Challies wrote a post called, “Amusing 1-Star Reviews of Great Books.” After a short introduction, Challies “cut and pasted” a few dozen 1-star reviews of some of his favorite books, all for the purpose of showcasing “why we ought to be careful when allowing Amazon’s star ratings to influence our purchases.” As the title promised, the reviews were certainly amusing!

Among his favorite books was Systematic Theology by Wayne Grudem. A systematic theology is an attempt to say helpful things about the whole of the Christian faith as taught in the Bible. I remember, as a young Christian, when I first read Grudem’s book cover-to-cover. It taught me many things, including why there are church denominations; it’s not just that this pastor is funny and that one is serious, or this church sings hymns and that one doesn’t. No, different interpretations of the Bible create different denominations.

Challies notes several Amazon reviewers who didn’t share my appreciation for Grudem. One writes:

Make no bones about it: Grudem’s Systematic Theology represents about the dullest and least inspired end of the evangelical theological spectrum. His method is only too obvious: Announce your conclusions; line up the prooftexts; shoot holes through everyone else’s prooftexts; proudly announce the matter settled.

Dull. Uninspired. Eisegesis, not exegesis (that is, stuffs ideas into the text, not takes truth out of the text). Oh yeah, don’t forget: prideful.

Another reviewer writes: “No need to waste your money (that is what Wayne gets out of it).”

I find this comment especially interesting in light of the only time I met Grudem, a time when I found him to be generous not greedy. He was teaching how the Bible should inform our political views to a group of about a hundred pastors. After his talk, he answered questions from the audience. I had one, so from the back side corner of the room, I raised my hand. Eventually, a kind woman made her way to my table and handed me the microphone she was holding. As I raised it towards my mouth, someone from the stage (not Grudem) said, “Okay, I think we need to move on. No more questions.”

The woman looked sympathetically at me; she shrugged, snatched the microphone back, and walked away. I got snubbed. The eight people from my church who shared a table with me found this, shall we say, amusing!

Though I lost some pride, I still had a question. So afterwards, I found Dr. Grudem at his table. He was standing beside an intimidating stack of his books, which were for sale. When it was my turn, he couldn’t have been more gracious and unassuming, listening to my question, answering it as best he could, and giving me time for a follow up.

Then, he asked me a question. He asked if I had his book, Politics According to the Bible, because, as he said, “I go into that very question in a lot more detail.”

What was I supposed to say? I didn’t have the book or the money to buy it, so I mumbled, “Ahhh . . . a guy at our office has it and I’m going to read it over the next week or two.” (This was actually true; the pastors at our church were teaching a class about the topic, and I did intend to read it.)

But here’s what Grudem did: He took out his wallet, went over to the table, and bought me a copy of his own book—an expensive hardback copy! And I say it was “his book,” but it was only “his” because he wrote it. I found out later that it was the organization hosting the event who had provided the stack of books, so technically, as was pointed out, “someone should pay for it.” From a distance, I had loved and benefited from the ministry of Grudem for years, but in that moment, my appreciation for him grew by volumes.

Since that day, as I’ve listened to the audio from his Sunday school classes (which are free online), I’ve heard him show others the same care he showed me. And I’ve also learned how he has sacrificially lived the complementarianism that he’s so faithfully defended. For example, for the sake of his wife’s health, he left the large and established Trinity Evangelical Seminary to teach at the smaller and (then) less established Phoenix Seminary.

On December 22, 2015, Desiring God posted the article, “I Have Parkinson’s and I Am at Peace.” It was written by Grudem. It made me sad, a twinge of sorrow before Christmas. My grandfather died of Parkinson’s when I was in high school. I remember it well. In a way, and albeit mostly from a distance, Grudem has been a sort of spiritual grandfather to me.

At the end of the article—after describing the disease, his renewed trust in the Lord, and his hope to finish several writing projects, including updating hisSystematic Theology (from 2017–2019!)—he wrote, “I am at peace.”

I love Wayne Grudem and “I thank my God in all my remembrance of [him]” (Philippians 1:3).

What just happened?

In one of the most significant rulings on abortion in decades, the Supreme Court ruled on Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt in a 5-3 decision to overturn state laws designed to regulate abortion clinics in a way that would protect women’s health.


What was the case about?

After the Kermit Gosnell scandal created an awareness of the unsafe, unsanitary, and largely unregulated conditions in abortion clinics in America, the State of Texas passed House Bill 2. According to Alliance Defending Freedom, HB2—which became law in 2013—mandates that abortion facilities adhere to ambulatory surgical center requirements common to most outpatient facilities, and it also requires abortionists to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of the abortion facility to be able to handle emergencies when something goes wrong.

Whole Woman’s Health, an abortion provider in Texas, challenged the law in federal court, claiming it was expensive, not medically necessary, and interfered with women’s health care.

What was the lower court ruling?

In June 2015, the Fifth Circuit Court in New Orleans disagreed with the claims of Whole Woman’s Health and largely upheld the contested provisions of the Texas law. The Fifth Circuit ruled that, with minor exceptions, the law did not place an undue burden on the right to an abortion.

Why did the case go to the Supreme Court?

The plaintiffs on the side of Whole Woman’s Health Women appealed the case to the Supreme Court, arguing that when applying the “undue burden” standard of Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the Fifth Circuit court erred by refusing to consider whether and to what extent laws that restrict abortion for the stated purpose of promoting health actually serve the government’s interest in promoting health; and that the Fifth Circuit erred in concluding that this standard permits Texas to enforce, in nearly all circumstances, laws that would cause a significant reduction in the availability of abortion services while failing to advance the State’s interest in promoting health—or any other valid interest.

What is the federal government’s position on the case?

The Obama administration joined in the case in full support of the abortion clinics and their doctors.

Was the law responsible for shutting down abortion clinics?

Prior to the adoption of the new restrictions by the Texas legislature, the state of Texas had 41 clinics performing abortions. But as a result of partial enforcement of the new law, Lyle Denniston says, that number has dropped to 19, and clinic operators have argued that the total number may drop to 10, statewide, if the Court were to uphold the law. The conservative justices on the Court, however, said there was little evidence that clinics have closed or would close because of the law.

What was the opinion of the liberal justices on the ruling?

The liberal majority (Justices Breyer, Kennedy, Ginsburg, Sotomayor, and Kagan) claimed that the regulations impose an “undue burden” on women seeking abortions. According to the opinion:

The dramatic drop in the number of clinics means fewer doctors, longer waiting times, and increased crowding. It also means a significant increase in the distance women of reproductive age live from an abortion clinic. Increased driving distances do not always constitute an “undue burden,” but they are an additional burden, which, when taken together with others caused by the closings, and when viewed in light of the virtual absence of any health benefit, help support the District Court’s “undue burden” conclusion.

Their ultimate determination:

We have found nothing in Texas’ record evidence that shows that, compared to prior law (which required a “working arrangement” with a doctor with admitting privileges), the new law advanced Texas’ legitimate interest in protecting women’s health.

What was the opinion of the conserative justices on the ruling?

Justice Thomas wrote a separate dissent to “emphasize how today’s decision perpetuates the Court’s habit of applying different rules to different constitutional rights—especially the putative right to abortion.” Thomas notes that throughout the nation’s history, third parties have been barred from bringing a case challenging a statute by asserting someone else’s constitutional rights. Yet exceptions are commonly made by the Court on abortion-related cases. He writes:

Ultimately, this case shows why the Court never should have bent the rules for favored rights in the first place. Our law is now so riddled with special exceptions for special rights that our decisions deliver neither predictability nor the promise of a judiciary bound by the rule of law.

Justice Alito also wrote a dissent noting that the Court appears to have special rules when it comes to abortion. Alito said, “determined to strike down two provisions of a new Texas abortion statute in all of their applications, the Court simply disregards basic rules that apply in all other cases.”

In his dissent (which was joined by Thomas), Alito notes, “The Court’s patent refusal to apply well-established law in a neutral way is indefensible and will undermine public confidence in the Court as a fair and neutral arbiter.”

Joe Carter is an editor for The Gospel Coalition, the editor of the NIV Lifehacks Bible, and the co-author of How to Argue Like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History’s Greatest Communicator. You can follow him on Twitter.

The #NeverTrump Mass Temper Tantrum Continues: George Will Announces Departure From GOP. Well…Bye! — Kingsjester’s Blog

By now, I’m sure that you have seen or heard Donald J. Trump’s New Campaign Slogan, “I’m With You”, meaning that he stands with us average Americans, not the Political Elite of our nation. And, that has made “The Smartest People in the Room” positively apoplectic. PJMedia.com reports that Conservative columnist George Will told PJM […]

via The #NeverTrump Mass Temper Tantrum Continues: George Will Announces Departure From GOP. Well…Bye! — Kingsjester’s Blog

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Defining Decency Down

Samuel D. James

If a horrific act of murder happens somewhere in the world, but you don’t blog within minutes about it, or Tweet about What It All Means…do you still care?

In the week and a half since a young man (I won’t name him. It’s a scandal that we make celebrities out of terrorists and psychopaths) brutally murdered nearly 50 people in an Orlando nightclub, I and many of those close to me have had much to think about. The nightclub was a gay nightclub. The killer obviously targeted a specific community of human beings that particularly offended him, one that he wanted to terrorize. In the era of our media-soaked, clicks-oriented identity politics, the weight of that thought can be hard to feel. Not hard to understand, mind you; hard to feel, to truly have the horror and hatred and vulnerability of such an act reverberate in the soul.

The…

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Train a child in the way he should go, and even when he is old he will not turn away from it.

Father’s Day

So thankful for a Father like Olin Lingle

he was father who worked hard to provide

for a family of 3 boys, 3 girls. He was a

very good example and role model for all

of us. He was a man of great faith in Jesus

Christ. And he walked the walk. He prayed

about everything. His prayer life was a

commitment like I have not seen in anyone

else I have ever known. Thank you Lord

for blessing me with a Father like

Olin Lingle. He has been in heaven now

for nearly 20 years, and I look forward

to seeing him again someday.

His favorite

saying to everyone was as we were leaving:

 “Take Jesus with you” 

and big hug!

Thank you Dad —

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via 81 Free and Discount Christian Non-fiction Kindle Deals June 7, 2016 — Vessel Project

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Patriotism, like other earthly “prides,” can be a virtue or vice.

By Kevin DeYoung

This is post probably has something to make everyone unhappy. But here goes.

With Memorial Day on Monday (in the U.S.) and, no doubt, a number of patriotic services scheduled for this Sunday, I want to offer a few theses on patriotism and the church. Each of these points could be substantially expanded and beg more detailed defense and explanation, but since this is a blog and not a term paper, I’ll try to keep this under 1500 words.

1. Being a Christian does not remove ethnic and national identities.

In Christ there is neither Jew nor Greek, male nor female, slave nor free (Gal. 3:28), but this does not mean men cease to be male or Jews ceases to be Jewish. The worshiping throng gathered around the throne is not a bland mess of Esperanto Christians in matching khaki pants and white polos. God makes us one in Christ, but that oneness does not mean we can no longer recognize tribes, tongues, nations, and peoples in heaven. If you don’t have to renounce being an American in heaven, you shouldn’t have to pretend you aren’t one now.

2. Patriotism, like other earthly “prides,” can be a virtue or vice.

Most people love their families. Many people love their schools, their home, and their sports teams. All of these loves can be appropriate. In making us for himself, God didn’t mean to eradicate all other loves. Instead he wants those loves to be purer and in right proportion to our ultimate Love. Adam and Eve should have loved the Garden. God didn’t intend for them to be so “spiritual” that they were blind to the goodness around them. In the same way, where there is good in our country or family it is right to have affection and display affection for those good things.

Of course, we can turn patriotism into an idol, just like family can be an idol. But being proud of your country (or proud to be an American or a Canadian or a Russian or whatever) is not inherently worse than being proud of your kids or proud to be a Smith or a Jones or a Dostoevsky. I find it strange that while it is fashionable to love your city, be proud of your city, and talk about transforming your city, it is, for some of the same people, quite gauche to love your country, be proud of your country, and talk about transforming your country.

3. Allegiance to God and allegiance to your country are not inherently incompatible.

Sometimes Christians talk like you should have no loyalty for your country, as if love for your country was always a bad thing. To be sure, this must never be ultimate loyalty. We must always obey God rather than men. But most Christians have understood the fifth commandment to be about honoring not only your parents but all those in authority over you.

Moreover, Jesus shows its possible to honor God and honor Caesar. This is especially clear if you know some of the Jewish history. The tax in question in Mark 12 is about the poll tax or census tax. It was first instituted in AD 6, not too many years before Jesus’ ministry. When it was established a man by the name of Judas of Galilee led a revolt. According to Josephus, “He called his fellow countrymen cowards for being willing to pay tribute to the Romans and for putting up with mortal masters in place of God.” Like the Zealots, he believed allegiance to God and allegiance to any earthly government were fundamentally incompatible. As far as they were concerned if God was your king, you couldn’t have an earthly king.

But Jesus completely disagreed. By telling the people to “render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s” he was saying there are duties to government that do not infringe on your ultimate duty to God. It’s possible to honor lesser authorities in good conscience because they have been instituted by a greater authority.

If you read all that the New Testament says about governing authorities in places like Romans 13 and 1 Peter 2, you see that the normal situation is one of compatible loyalties. The church is not the state and the state is not God, but this does not mean the church must always be against the state. In general, then, it’s possible to be a good Christian and a good American, or a good Ghanaian or a good Korean. Patriotism is not bad. Singing your national anthem and getting choked up is not bad. Allegiance to God and allegiance to your country do not have to be at odds.

4. God’s people are not tied to any one nation.

When Jesus says “go ahead and give to Caesar what belongs to him” he is effectively saying, “you can support nations that do not formally worship the one true God.” Or to put it a different way: true religion is not bound with only one country. This means–as we see in Revelation 7 and Isaiah 49 and Psalm 87 and Matthew 28 and Acts 1and a hundred other places–the Church will be transcultural and transnational.

While American churches are in America, they must never be only American churches. We must keep in mind (and when applicable, explicitly state) that our congregations are filled with brothers and sisters from all over the world. Likewise, we must work hard to help people see that Christianity is not just a Western religion or American religion. Christianity started in the Middle East and quickly spread to North Africa, and parts of Asia and Europe. The Church was always meant to be international. Today there are more Anglicans in church in Nigeria than in England, more Presbyterians in South Korea than in the United States. The promise to Abraham way back in Genesis is that through his family God would bless the whole world. Christianity is not tied to just one certain nation. Following Christ is not an ethnic thing. You can be from any country and worship Jesus.

5. All this leads to one final point: while patriotism can be good, the church is not a good place for patriotism.

We should pray for service men and women in our congregations. We should pray for the President. We should pray for the just cause to triumph over the evil one. We are not moral relativists. We do not believe just because all people are sinners and all nations are sinful that no person or no nation can be more righteous or more wicked than another. God may be on America’s side in some (not all) her endeavors.

But please think twice before putting on a Star Spangled gala in church this Sunday. I love to hear the national anthem and “God Bless America” and “My Country, Tis of Thee,” but not in church where the nations gather to worship the King of all peoples. I love to see the presentation of colors and salute our veterans, but these would be better at the Memorial Day parade or during a time of remembrance at the cemetery. Earthly worship should reflect the on-going worship in heaven. And while there are many Americans singing glorious songs to Jesus there, they are not singing songs about the glories of America. We must hold to the traditions of the Apostles in our worship, not the traditions of American history. The church should not ask of her people what is not required in Scripture. So how can we ask the Koreans and Chinese and Mexicans and South Africans in our churches to pledge allegiance to a flag that is not theirs? Are we gathered under the banner of Christ or another banner? Is the church of Jesus Christ–our Jewish Lord and Savior–for those draped in the red, white, and blue or for those washed in the blood of the Lamb?

In some parts of the church, every hint of patriotism makes you a jingoistic idolater. You are allowed to love every country except your own. But in other parts of the church, true religion blends too comfortably into civil religion. You are allowed to worship in our services as long as you love America as much as we do. I don’t claim to have arrived at the golden mean, but I imagine many churches could stand to think more carefully about their theology of God and country. Churches should be glad to have their members celebrate Memorial Day with gusto this Monday. We should be less sanguine about celebrating it with pomp and circumstance on Sunday.

The Power Of Conformity

A reader writes:

Watching my Facebook feed over the past several years, I’ve come to understand what bin Laden meant when he said people naturally back “the strong horse.” Now that it appears that LGBT+ is the Winning Team, a lot of folks are suddenly super-duper in favor of pretty much the entire LGBT+ agenda, despite whatever they might have said in the past.

I grew up in a conservative, Bible-belt environment. When I was in high school about two and a half decades ago, open hatred of gays was viewed as perfectly acceptable. I vividly remember one of my classmates, a perfectly lovely and sweet-natured girl, telling me she thought all “faggots” should get the death penalty — this was around 1991, I believe. When I was brave enough to speak up with a qualified defense of gay rights, people called me a “fag-lover” and a pervert.

Today, I see some of these exact same people on my Facebook feed, and suddenly they’re far to the left of me on everything involving LGBT+ issues. It’s really amazing. In about 25 years, I went from being a “fag loving” perv to a hateful right-wing bigot without ever changing my views on the subject.

To be fair, the switch seems to have been most pronounced with the people who never had any strong principles to begin with; the most devoutly religious folks I know are still not on board with any of this, although they’ve obviously toned down their rhetoric by a few orders of magnitude. But the rest? It’s like night and day. I’m getting lectured on “tolerance” by people who would have been happy to pack gays into ovens back in the day. I know people can evolve and change, but this is just incredible. I mean, a lot of these people just show zero awareness of how much they’ve shifted.

Heck, the dad of one my high school friends said today he doesn’t care one way or another about all this transgender stuff, and everyone should be allowed to go potty where they want. This was a guy who told his son when he was a teenager that he’d disown him if he “came out” as gay and said if his son ever came home wearing an earring he’d rip it out and take a chunk of his ear with it.

In theory, of course, I always knew that most people don’t engage much with the big questions; they just go through life following the herd. Still, it’s been quite unnerving to see this play out so drastically in real life. What OTHER policies would the majority heartily endorse if the culture commanded them to do so?

It used to confuse me how the Bolsheviks were able to take over Russia when, by all accounts, they were such a tiny minority at the time. Now I understand how, and it’s starting to frighten me. If you’re on the other side of this LGBT+ debate, it should frighten you, too: You should know that a lot of those folks posting LOVE WINS memes on Facebook would be happy to abandon you and join the rabid fundamentalist side if they suddenly felt it was in their interest to do so; furthermore, a distressing number of them would do it without any awareness of what they were doing. In view of that, do you REALLY think it’s that wise to import millions of Muslim fundamentalists into the west?

Incidentally, this is why I think Trump’s chances in the general are better than most people think. Political “majorities” are, in some sense, an illusion. The vast, vast bulk of the population, it seems, will happily switch sides if it suddenly appears that the side they’re nominally allied with is headed for a crushing defeat. Trump could win a lot of voters just by creating an aura of invincibility; he wouldn’t have to change people’s minds — if he appeared strong enough, they’d change their minds FOR him.

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Exclusive: ‘I was Raised by an Islamist Terror Cult in America’ Clarion Project, Ryan Mauro, May 15, 2016 Illustrative picture: Pixabay) The Clarion Project has been in contact with a woman who grew up within Jamaat ul-Fuqra, a cultish Sufi Islamist terrorist group that now goes by the name of Muslims of the Americas. The group […]

via Exclusive: ‘I was Raised by an Islamist Terror Cult in America’ —

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Melissa Cain Travis

Apologetics, Worldview, and a Pebble in the Shoe

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The Cross Is All We Need

"Weak, feeble and foolish as it may seem to people, the simple story of the Cross is enough for all mankind in every part of the globe." ~ J.C. Ryle

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Of the sons of Issachar, men who understood the times, with knowledge of what Israel should do, their chiefs were two hundred; and all their kinsmen were at their command -- 1 Chronicles 12:32

David F. Watson

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BUNKERVILLE | God, Guns and Guts Comrades!

God, Guns and Guts Comrades!

The Cross Is All We Need

"Weak, feeble and foolish as it may seem to people, the simple story of the Cross is enough for all mankind in every part of the globe." ~ J.C. Ryle

Start Thinking Right

Of the sons of Issachar, men who understood the times, with knowledge of what Israel should do, their chiefs were two hundred; and all their kinsmen were at their command -- 1 Chronicles 12:32

David F. Watson

Musings and whatnot....

Lisa Haven News

Christian, End Time, and Conspiracy News!

News that matters

Exposing fake and falsehood

Tony Reinke

Minneapolis

Did Jesus have a Facebook Page?

Christianity 0ut of the Box

Reformedish

incompletely reformed thoughts on God, ministry, and life

Aleteia.org – Worldwide Catholic Network Sharing Faith Resources for those seeking Truth – Aleteia.org

Worldwide Catholic Network Sharing Faith Resources for those seeking Truth

Pastor Dave Online

Reflections on Christ and Culture

Samuel D. James

Assorted thoughts on life, faith, and culture

Enough Light

"In faith there is enough light for those who want to believe and enough shadows to blind those who don't." - Blaise Pascal

Worthily Magnify

Helping Worship Leaders Lead Well

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