Monday, December 31, 2007

Survival of the Moral: Can Man Be Moral Without God?

There are two difficult problems with Darwinist that they cannot solve by evolutionary means: religion and morality. The two are obviously related. Evolution argues that everything happened by chance and progresses by survival of the fittest. But when it comes to morality and faith, Darwin is left without an answer.

RELIGION


Let's begin with religion. Nowhere can Naturalist explain where religion has come from. The first homosaphians (if there was ever anything before them) that were on earth were inherently religious. It is argued that the Sumerians were among the first "civilized" people. If this is the case, then then it is arguable that the first civilized people were also very religious. They had an explanation for the origins of the world, they had gods they worshiped, and they practiced morality.


Mankind has always been religious. It is embedded in our souls (or for the evolutionists: genes) to believe in something greater than ourselves. Since this is the case, the atheist is, in reality, out of the mainstream. There is no ration explanation from evolution that explains why people are born with an inclination for religion.


Religion teaches man that he is not great, he was created for something more than this earth, there are consequences for our actions, obedience is not an option, and faith is a necessity. Evolution teaches that man is on his own, every man for himself, and get what you want because this is all there is to existence.


Then please explain, dear atheist, why we are religious. The common response we get from such naturalist is that there is a religion gene that we are born with. This is simply laughable and grasping for air. No evolutionist, to date, has been able to figure out where, in line with their faith in evolution, can explain why people continue to believe in folly and not embrace the truth of nothingness.


In fact, I would argue that evolution and even atheism itself is a religion. For example, if atheism was unbelief, then why are Dawkins, Harris, Hitchenson, and others (not to mention Freud, Marx, Nietzsche, etc.) trying to "convert" us to their own beliefs? 2007 has been a year for atheists with the release of many bestselling books defending the rationale for atheism. Why are they trying so hard to convince us that they are right? If they are true postmodern atheist, they would disappear and remain silent because none of it matters. The atheist would see the religions of this world as mere chance and part of the evolutionary process soon to be weeded out by something greater and better. Why are they trying so hard to convert the religious to be "unreligious?"


Secondly, atheism, naturalism, etc. have their own doctrines in which they believe. Call it postmodernism, secularism, or whatever, they do have a set of believes in which they follow. They see man's problem (sin) as being religion and it's oppression on truth. Therefore, they seek to weed out all religions as mere frauds. Secondly, their source of "divine" authority is obviously 'Charles Darwin's "The Origins of Species." Their god is themselves. And their eschatology is a Utopian world void of religion, poverty, strife, war, and pain.


If this is not a religion, then please tell what is. And therefore, we must conclude then asking the question, not why are "believers" so religious, but what can explain why so-called "unbelievers" are so religious? That, my friends, defies all explanation evolutionary rationale!!


MORALITY


Why in the world, in a naturalistic worldview, would people be moral, give up themselves for somebody else, and contradict survival of the fittest? That is the problem with evolution and it's (lack of) explanation for the issue of morality. We've established that atheism and Darwinism (oftentimes the same thing) are religions just the same as Christianity and Islam, we will also establish that evolution gives no rationale for morality.


In the animal world most (not all) parents (whether one or both) will abandon their child and family. Very few in the animal world create "families." Although some do, most do not. I have never seen anyone discipline their dog for being a "playa." I've never seen anyone yell at their pet rabbit for cheating on their first partner. Nor have I seen anyone condemn the female praying mantis for eating the father of her baby (I'm guessing that the feminist really love the praying mantis. But it's just a guess).


There seems, to me, a world of difference between humans (who can actually read these words) and the animal world.


Just look at it this way, who do humans protect the most? The young, the handicap, and the old. Those are the three groups that predators like to kill. Why? Because the young are inexperienced, the handicap can't get away, and the old are too slow. Therefore, they are easy prey.


As humans, we are appalled by this line of thinking. To take advantage of anyone in one of these groups gets you labeled as one of the worst in society. Pedophiles are among the most evil in society, as are those that take advantage of these other groups. So please explain to me where such morality comes from if we are no different than the common animal?


You do not see monkeys forming societies to protect the handicap, or passing bills that allow the elderly to retire. You do not see monkey pedophiles in monkey jail. So, why do we see these things in human society? The simple answer is that we are born with a sense of morality that even the stanches of atheists cannot deny.


Where does this natural conscience come from? God (that is, the devil for the atheists out there). And this is exactly what we see in Scripture. Paul writes:




(Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law, since they show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts now accusing, now even defending them.) This will take place on the day when God will judge men's secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares. -Romans 2:14-16

Paul is clear that even the Gentiles, who do not have God's special revelation, have a natural law that leads them to practice morality. Even the most ardent of atheist mothers tell their children not to push, not to steal, and not to run with scissors. Why? Wouldn't pushing establish territory and authority like most animals? Wouldn't stealing give them the greater advantage? And wouldn't running with scissors be a lot of fun? :o) Just like every animal in the animal kingdom?


The question must be asked of the Darwinist, what explains your lack of explanation? Why are atheist so moral if it doesn't serve our own means of survival and advancement? Survival of the fittest?....or God's Natural Law?


Even Darwin would be forced to admit, the latter seems to more probable. Just when we thought man had gotten rid of God, God shows up in the most unexpected of places!


CONCLUSION


Though Dawkins and others can try, they are unable to explain why man is moral and has strong convictions and inclinations towards faith. We have established that atheism and naturalism is just as religious as other worldviews and we have established that evolution cannot explain why humans (who are just mere animals) do not act like mere animals. Morality and faith negate the very claims of evolution.


There is only one conclusion then: evolution, as currently understood, must be false. Evolution cannot explain these things, and others, because it is false. A theory, yes, but truth, it is not.


Rather, our discussion proves one thing: every human being is made in the image of God. This explains why the religious (this includes atheism who themselves practice morality and the various doctrines of religion) were among those appalled by slavery, oppression, who help the poor, defend the weak, etc. They see equality and God's image being oppressed, not billions of years of accidental survival of the fittest.


If the naturalist were consistent, they would look at slaves, the oppressed, the poor, and the unwanted, not as victims of their times who deserve better, but rather people who just didn't make it. "Don't worry," they would argue, "in a million years, their kind will be weeded out."


Welcome to a more accurate view of the doctrines of evolution. The very fact that atheist and naturalist don't act this way proves my point: we are made in the image of God, and He holds us accountable for our actions, beliefs, or the lack their of.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Moore: The Ecumenism of the Abortion Clinic

Whenever I read Dr. Russel Moore's article concerning abortion and the religious commitments of some of the women who have abortions, I was shocked. We never really think about the religious commitments of those who have abortions (or the men who pressure them to do so), but Dr. Moore shows us why we must think about this issue.


But he doesn't stop there. What is repentance and what role does the Church play in it? Dr. Moore is less concerned with who is getting an abortion than he is about the lack of Biblical preaching on repentance and the gospel is happening in our pulpits. Such women and those involved in the murder of an infant are in need of repentance. Only repentance can bring relief to a difficult situation, not an abortion doctor.


I encourage everyone to read the following article and to think about what must be done to recover a more biblical understanding of true repentance. Repentance is defined as sorrow over sin that leads to a more perfect obedience, not, "oops, my bad."




We are accustomed to seeing Evangelicals and Roman Catholics praying together outside abortion clinics and working together for pro-life legislation. But we don't think about a less pleasant ecumenism: Catholics and Evangelicals waiting together in the lobby of an abortion facility.


A front-page article in the New York Times last September featured an inside look at the daily workings of an abortion clinic in Little Rock. The piece communicated the calloused yet tortured consciences of the women involved. They don't wish to be seen, or to make contact with others in the waiting room. Even more striking, though, are their religious commitments.


One Baptist college student, having her third abortion, is quoted in the article saying: "My religion is against it. In a way I feel I'm doing wrong, but you can be forgiven. I blame myself. I feel I shouldn't have sex at all."


"I've done this once and swore I wouldn't do it again," said a woman named Regina. "Every woman has second thoughts, especially because I'm Catholic." Regina noted that she went to confession. "The priest didn't hound me," she reported. "He said, 'People make mistakes.'"


The facility's operating room supervisor, Ebony, whom the article chillingly describes as rinsing "the blood off aborted tissues," could understand Regina's story. Ebony, too, has had an abortion. "As a Baptist, she still considered abortion a sin, but so are a lot of things we all do, she said." The article closes with the Baptist's words to the Catholic undergoing the abortion: "No problem sweetie. We've all been there."

Other Ecumenisms


As we talk through the "ecumenism of the trenches" between Catholics and Evangelicals, we should remember the sad truth that there is also an "ecumenism of the waiting room." The women ushered into the death clinics are not usually secularist feminists, proudly wearing their NOW Tshirts. More often, they are girls from St. Joseph's parish or First Baptist's youth group.


They would be counted as "prolife" on the telephone survey. They know all the right answers to the sanctity of life questions, and they can be counted on, when they reach voting age, to cast ballots for pro-life candidates. But when pregnant, they wait together for the abortionist's solution.


Whatever very real soteriological debates exist between Catholics and Evangelicals, they share, at least in the waiting room, the same doctrine of grace: "Let us sin that grace may abound" (Rom. 6:1).


The challenge for our churches is not to be more condemnatory. The message of God's grace is, after all, the heart of the gospel. The atonement of Jesus forgives every sin, including that of the shedding of innocent blood. We must comfort repentant post-abortion women with the truth that "there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ" (Rom. 8:1).


At the same time, like the Apostle Paul, we must remember that grace that is license to sin is no grace at all. The problem is not that "we all make mistakes." The issue is instead that judgment has fallen, in all of its fury, on a crucified Messiah who became sin that we might become the righteousness of God in him (2 Cor. 5:21). As we proclaim God the justifier, we must not forget that this means the proclamation of God the just (Rom. 3:26).


The challenge for our churches is to reclaim the Christian emphasis on repentance. American culture is far too familiar with nominal Catholics who prepare for Lent with a hedonistic Mardi Gras and with nominal Evangelicals who plan to "rededicate their lives" at the altar call after a weekend of decadence.


Those who claim that though I am doing this thing I deem best for me, God will forgive me later, are not only presuming upon the grace of God, they are recapitulating the sin of the first man and woman: to seek autonomy and the self as god while still wishing to remain in the presence of the Holy One. This is not a repentant disposition, but instead a deeply arrogant and satanic one.


If I follow the course of my own desires, even while looking forward to forgiveness, I am worshipping another god: the creature rather than the Creator (Rom. 1:25). Indeed, in this moment, the felt need for forgiveness itself is just another self-focused passion. The sinner seeks to be his own authority for what is best at the moment and to be his own authority for what is best in the future, reconciliation with God--but all on my terms and at my timing.


Real Repentance


Repentance, however, is about more than a formal appeal for the nullification of consequences, as though it were the equivalent of having a parking ticket expunged. Instead, repentance is a conviction that God is right in his holiness to judge this transgression with everlasting wrath. The sinner appeals to God to be merciful, not because the sin is justifiable, but precisely because it is not justifiable at all.


Repentance, then, justifies not the sin, but the holiness and justice of the Creator.
Jesus sent away a wealthy politician because he loved his financial assets more than he sought to follow the Messiah (Matt. 19:16–22). In the same way, we must fear that generations of self-professing Christians value their "reproductive freedom" or their "personal authenticity" more than they treasure Christ. And all the while they, like the rich young ruler, approach the throne of Christ talking about eternal life, perhaps even singing "Amazing Grace."


The implications for the Church are stark. If we don't preach a biblical understanding of sin and grace, the local abortionist is ready to take our place in the pulpit.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

D'Souza: Taking Christ Out of Christmas

About two weeks ago, our church was doing a special program where we would go before the congregation and tell what we are thankful for this Christmas, and then procede to hang an ornament on the Church's "holiday tree." At the end of the service, the pastor asked if anyone had anything else to say. I raised my hand and said, "Happy Holidays everyone!"


Of course I said it as a joke, but boy did it get everyone stirred up. The pastor looked at me and asked me to end the service in prayer. I responded by saying yes and explaining that I would also ask for forgiveness!


Everyone knew that I was joking, and many came up to me and wished me a very firm "Merry Christmas," of which I responded the same. People at our church, in a loving, joking way, want to make sure that I was joking as they assumed, and I was. I was not at all surprised or upset by their reaction, in fact I was thankful for it.


This whole, "war on Christmas," thing is making me sick. The anti-Christian bigotry of this country astounds me. It is p0litically correct to be the bigot and shun the Christians and the holiday they celebrate that even nonbelievers take advantage of, but heaven forbid if a Christian stands up and say that they are against anything.


In short, if you want to know who is the more bigotted, intolerant, and closed minded, look at the one's waging this so-called war on Christmas and everything else that Christian hold so dear. The real bigots are those who intolerantly accuse others of intolerance and bogitry. The old saying goes: for every finger you point, there are 3 more fingers pointing back at you. This is so true today. The secular left need to replay their own sermons and apply them to themselves.


I STRONGLY encourage you to read the following article by Dinesh D'Souza, author of "What's So Great About Christianity?" He discusses this war on Christmas and how ludicrous it is. He is a better wordsmith than I will ever be, and the points he makes are dead on. I cannot ask you enough to read the following article. He is exactly right!


I appeared Friday evening on CNN to discuss "the war against Christmas," a strange and demented war if there ever was one. We've heard about stores that refuse to allow employees to say "Merry Christmas" and communities legally compelled to take down nativity scenes. The specific case under discussion involved a Seattle volunteer policeman--a former Christian pastor turned militant atheist--who has convinced the department to remove the crosses from police chaplains' badges. His argument? Chaplains have to minister to non-Christians as well as Christians. Some people might object to the crosses. Therefore all Christian symbolism is inappropriate.


Yet the very fact that the police and military have chaplains shows that there are times of bereavement when secular counseling is inadequate. When people lose a loved one they don't want a therapist, they want a chaplain! So the religious need is apparent here. And yet chaplains don't come in the generic theist variety; they are Catholic or Lutheran or whatever. Now there is no evidence whatsoever that a Christian chaplain cannot console a non-Christian parent or widow. The sole reason for getting rid of the Christian symbol is the premise that someone may object to it, and not everyone subscribes to the Christian worldview.


But apply this logic to another holiday and its absurdity becomes manifest. Imagine if the ACLU filed lawsuits nationwide to remove all references to Martin Luther King on Martin Luther King day. The reason is that not everyone agrees that King's legacy was a positive one, and that the main beneficiaries of King's activism have been African Americans and other minorities.


Southern segregationists, in particular, feel excluded from King's "beloved community." So in the name of diversity and tolerance all monuments and symbols and references to King should be erased. Instead Martin Luther King day becomes another "happy holiday."


This would be crazy. The answer to the ACLU would go something like this: "We are honoring King because we believe he has changed our civilization and our world vastly for the better. If you don't agree, by all means write a letter to the editor. But it is intolerance bordering on bigotry for institutions to get rid of all references to King simply because some people don't like him or feel excluded by his vision."


The same argument applies to Christ and Christmas. We are celebrating Christmas because, in the words of historian J.M. Roberts: "We could none of us today be what we are if a handful of Jews nearly two thousand years ago had not believed that they had known a great teacher, seen him crucified, dead and buried, and then rise again." Notice that this is an understanding of Christmas that even secular people can embrace: whether or not you think Christ is the messiah, he has done more to shape our world, and for the better, than any other single figure. So what's wrong with celebrating Christmas in the spirit of Christ? Why on earth should the symbolism of "Merry Christmas" and carols and crosses on police chaplains' uniforms be removed just because of the presence of one or a few malcontents? Why is it racism to erase all references to Martin Luther King but socially acceptable to object on the same grounds to Christ?


We've reached a sad state in the West when we acquiesce in a hate-filled campaign to deny our Christian roots and heritage. Athens and Jerusalem are both foundation pillars of Western civilization, and the presence of a few people who object to Socrates or Christ doesn't change this fact one bit. The malcontents are suffering from historical amnesia: they don't seem tor recognize that most of our secular values from compassion to the preciousness of human life are the distinctive legacy of Christianity. That's why even atheists should, for once, set aside their deep-seated resentments and hatreds and say, even if in a lower voice so that no one else can hear, "Thank God for Christianity."

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Atheism Is Not Great - The D'Souza and Hitchens Debate

Over the past month, I have grown to greatly respect and appreciate Dinesh D'Souza. After reading his book, "What's So Great About Christianity," I began to see what else he does and has written. I quickly realized that he is known for debating the leading atheist of our day.

For anyone that keeps up with the culture, this has been a breakthrough year for atheist. It all started with Richard Dawkins release of "The God Delusion," and since then, fellow atheist such as Samuel Harris, Daniel Dennett, Christopher Hitchens, and others have written similar books claiming that God is a myth.

D'Souza responded by writing his own book as a refutation of the claims made by the authors mentioned above. And he succeeds. But after each debate, many have argued, consistently, that D'Souza has won. After watching the recent debate between D'Souza and Christopher Hitchens (author of "God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything"), I believe that it is clear that D'Souza won. Everything Hitchens threw at D'Souza was answered with logic and even common sense. D'Souza is a master of one liners, but they are one liners that drive home the message.

In short, atheism makes no rational sense, and D'Souza shows us why. Christianity has stood the sands of time, and it will continue to persevere no matter what nonsense atheism or any other worldview may throw at it.

Here is the debate between D'Souza and Hitchens. I was stunned at how articulate D'Souza was and how inept Hitchens was. Though it is over 90 minutes long, I believe that it is well worth it. Anyone who is serious about understanding the culture, atheism, theism, morality, history, philosophy, etc., should watch this debate:

Monday, December 17, 2007

Mohler: My Daddy's Name is Donor?

This is utterly amazing. It just shows how far our culture has come, and how we couldn't care less about marriage, family, or parenting. Here is what Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr. had to say about it. He makes some good points. Here is just further evidence of the moral decay of our country.
_________

The t-shirt on the toddler is meant to be an attention-getter . . . and it is. A picture of the boy wearing the t-shirt appeared first in the Chicago Tribune but now also in The Times [London]. The t-shirt reads, "My daddy's name is Donor."

As Catherine Bruton of The Times explains:


The T-shirt is offered by a company called Family Evolutions, founded by a lesbian couple whose son modelled the shirt. The co-founder, Stacey Harris, says that the T-shirt is empowering. "We want to lift the taboo surrounding donor conception so that kids don't feel that their coming into the world is a shameful secret," she says. "Kids who are empowered will grow up well-adjusted."


The "empowering" t-shirt is intended to mainstream the idea that the male agent in procreation now no longer deserves even a name. The sale of sperm is now so commonplace that it is now just one more consumer good -- and an increasing number of consumers are single women and lesbian couples who share an intention to have babies without a husband.


Bruton's article considers the controversy over the t-shirt and the response of Elizabeth Marquardt of the Institute for American Values. Marquardt insisted that her concern was not that the boy was being raised by lesbians, suggesting that the lesbian aspect of the situation was "fine with me." Rather, her concern is about the redefinition of parenthood by technology.


As she explained, "What troubles me is that children today are being raised in an era of increasingly flexible definitions of parenthood, definitions that often serve the interests of adults without regard for children."


Her concern about children conceived with donor sperm is echoed by Narelle Grech, a "donor-conceived activist" in Melbourne, Australia:


"The poor kid wearing the shirt is basically being told that his dad is not important and is just a donor. I am sure he is one of many donor-conceived people, like myself, who are made to feel like they cannot be sad about the loss of their birth fathers."


The controversy has arisen with particular force in Great Britain, where a new policy removed donor anonymity. As Bruton explains, "Since April 2005, anyone registering to be a donor has done so knowing that a child can seek identifying information once he or she reaches 18."


All this certainly complicates the picture for potential donors (who now know that they cannot remain anonymous to any child produced by the sperm), donor-conceived children (who now must decide whether to obtain donor information and attempt contact), and prospective parents (who now cannot keep children from obtaining the identifying information once the child turns 18).


The controversy in The Times raises a host of related issues. Unlike Marquardt, a large number of persons will be concerned about the idea of lesbian couples having children by simply obtaining donor sperm -- the only male contribution to the entire relationship being the donation of gametes. The context is significant. Most persons would likely express far less moral concern about a married couple using the same technology in the event of the husband's infertility.


Still, the change in relational context does not alter the moral status of the technology itself. The abstraction of procreation from the act of sexual intercourse shared by the husband and wife -- the conjugal act -- opens the door for all manner of moral problems. The technologies of assisted reproduction by donor sperm [AID] and In Vitro Fertilization [IVF] bring moral risk, whatever the context or use. The more the procreation is abstracted from marriage and the marital act, the greater the risk and responsibility.


This becomes all too clear when reports now indicate that a majority of those requesting and using Artificial Insemination by Donor [AID] are now single women and lesbian couples. A quick look survey of the situation in major metropolitan areas will make that pretty clear. Sperm banks are now big business.


These realities are signs of what is let loose when sexuality is decoupled from marriage. Before long, it may not be controversial at all to see a toddler wearing a t-shirt that reads, "My daddy's name is Donor."

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Stine: Excluding Inclusiveness

Brad Stine is probably my favorite comedian out right now. I have all but one of his albums, and I have laughed my head off on everyone of them. I had the opportunity to see him live (twice) at the Promise Keepers conference in Cincinnati, OH.

What I like about Stine isn't that he can tell a joke, but rather he shows the ignorance of liberalism, secularism, political correctness, feminism, environmental wackos, animal rights activist, the media, the French, etc. by being funny. He exposes their ridiculousness (if that is a word) but humorously pointed out their many faults and inconsistencies. He isn't afraid of not being politically correct, in fact, he tries not to be. And for that, I admire the man.


On a recent blog post, Stine discusses Christmas and our cultures fear of the word. He makes some good points that I would like to share with everyone. Enjoy:


Many of you who have my albums,( that's right...ALBUMS , I'm old school baby) may have noticed I took time in 2 of them to rant about Christmas. Not the holiday so much as the word. I don't need to beat that dead horse about the removal of the word from stores , schools, and even our own mouths , as that truth is self evident.
What I did want to comment on was the irony that in the desire to be inclusive, our social community became the opposite. First we must explore which Holidays were being left out of the December celebration? There seems to be only 3 that are observed. I suppose there are some Wiccans celebrating the harvest, or the new moon or the tree gods or something but I don't count them. Those wacky Wiccans look for any excuse to get naked and dance around at night.


First we have Hannakuh. This is the celebration of the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem. This is a noble celebration and as I am Christian I have nothing but respect for the religion and people that birthed mine. But respect or not isn't the point. Hannakuh is a specific JEWISH holiday ,celebrated BY Jews. No one else is invited simply because it isn't FOR anyone else AND SHOULDN'T BE! Nothing wrong with that.


Consequently there are no Nat King Cole Hannakuh albums out there , though I'm sure if anyone could have nailed the dradle song it would have been Nat. The next holiday is Kwanzaa. Kwanzaa by the way has only been around since the mid 60's. Its purpose is to celebrate black Africans and their culture. Notice I said BLACK,AFRICAN and culture.


Since black Americans ancestors arrived here as slaves and over time many of them lost their cutural roots, to have a celebration to reclaim them while finding unity amongst their own certainly makes sense and is a perfectly logical way to do so. The point though is it is purposely exclusionary. It isn't for all Americans and was designed on purpose not to be.


What am I getting at? IF the concept of the term "Happy Holidays" is to prove equal respect for those who don't celebrate Christmas, does no one find it odd that the 2 other holidays we honor doesn't include us? You see folks the truth is even though Christmas is a Christian holiday it has morphed over the years for non-christians as a celebration of GIVING. Atheists don't believe in Christ as God but most give Christmas gifts. Deists, secular-humanists and political correct junkies give Christmas gifts.


Every commercial that doesn't use the term Christmas still uses Christmas symbolism to get you in the holiday spirit.You always get red and green colors, snow fall while jingling bells are heard in the backgound. Santa and elves, pine trees and large wrapped presents. ALL of these symbols, anyone who hasn't been recently lobotomized are aware, refer to Christmas and Christmas only.


That...is why Christmas celebrators get bent out of shape. If your going to use our symbols to hawk your wares , have the decency to use our word. If you truly believe in inclusiveness, in your next commercial include Jewish and Kwanzaa paraphenelia. Show Jewish Americans coming out of Temple and heading to their respective family homes or black Americans wearing traditional west African garb......but you don't.
Because you know what we all do.The reason there are lights on the homes across America, the reason there is even the contemplation of the "season of giving" and the reason there is a multi billion dollar buying spree in December and December alone is because of ONE holiday....Christmas. Please don't use our symbols to pretend your including everyone as it is a lie. Use ALL symbols OR NONE.

Lastly, anyone out there who celebrates Christmas but doesn't say Merry Christmas at work, while shoppng or in school...is a wuss! Merry Christmas everyone.

Friday, December 14, 2007

The Heismann Winner That Almost Never Was

Over the past few years, I have enjoyed watching college football. I used to not be such a fan of college football, and instead only watched the NFL. But in recent years, the success of the University of Louisville Cardinals greatly sparked my interest in collegiate football. And since then, I am hooked (even though the Cardinals finished 6-6 and are not going to a bowl game just one season after winning the Orange Bowl).

This years football season has been a wild one. No one knew for sure who would play in the championship game. No one knew who should be number 1 (or even who should be in the top 10!) There were so many good teams and so many upsets that 2007 will forever be remembered as a great season of football.


Another hard issue is who should have won the Heisman Trophy? Usually, there are 1 or 2 guys that everyone know for sure who is going to win. I was obviously rooting for Louisville quarterback Brian Brohm to win, but half way through the season, it was clear that he wouldn't due to his teams performance and record. But no one really knew who would win. By the end of the season, most assumed that it was between McFadden (of Arkansas, my other favorite team)and Tim Tebow (of the Florida Gators).


Well, as you know, Florida quarterback Tim Tebow won the Heisman Trophy becoming the first Sophomore to win the most prized award in college football. What most people don't know isn't that Tebow is from a Christian family and is a Christian himself, but that his mother was encouraged to have an abortion while pregnant with the future star quarterback.


Chances are, you won't find this in the mainstream press. Journalist everywhere will be ignoring this aspect of the story, but it should at least be highlighted here.




Pam Tebow and her husband were Christian missionaries in the Philippines in 1985 and they prayed for "Timmy" before she became pregnant.


Unfortunately, as the Gainesville Sun reports, Pam entered into a coma after she contracted amoebic dysentery, an infection of the intestine caused by a parasite found in a contaminated food or drink.


The treatment for the medical condition would require strong medications that doctors told Pam had caused irreversible damage to Tim -- so they advised her to have an abortion.


As the Sun reported, Pam Tebow refused the abortion and cited her Christian faith as the reason for her hope that her son would be born without the devastating disabilities physicians predicted.


Pam ultimately spent the last two months of her pregnancy in bed and, eventually, gave birth to a health baby boy in August 1987.

What an amazing revelation. I wonder what college football would have been like without the Heisman Trophy winner. This revelation also makes me wonder how many great leaders, thinkers, artists, sports stars, mothers, fathers, champions, performers, business owners (small and large), pastors, teachers, taxpayers, etc. have been murdered by government allowed abortion slaughter houses?


This should be an important reminder of how detesting our cultures obsession with death is. Our culture seeks death more than life and it is evident here by Pam Tebow's doctors encouraging her to have an abortion. Imagine what this country could be like if people waited until marriage to get pregnant and refused to have an abortion, no matter the situation.


A country cannot sustain itself and hold on to it's traditions if death is a celebrated Sacrament of it's culture!


We need to make an important point here. I am not a big fan of the phrase "pro-choice." Everyone is pro-choice. I am pro-choice. I have chosen to protect life and to defend the innocent from being murdered. That's my choice. Rather, a better title for those in support of abortion is "pro-death;" a term that defines their position much better than "pro-choice." If we are called pro-life because we favor protecting the child from death, then it should be obvious that those who favor the murder of infants are pro-death. But let's face it, it's not an appealing term.


It is impossible to argue that abortion isn't the killing of human life. As science and technology advances, what Christians (and the Bible) have always said and held; that life begins at conception. To exterminate a pregnancy is to murder an innocent infant.


Furthermore, it is appalling that we can rationalize murder. Of course we do it more than just at the beginning of life. Western culture has encouraged the growth and practice of euthanasia, infanticide (which explains why there are less children with Down Syndrome), and other forms of murder. Any society that rationalizes murdering it's own citizens is a society that has no moral credibility.


One last thing I want to point out is the myth of the importance of the quality of life is the most important question. Our society argues that if a child is going to be born handicap or with a disease, it would be better to abort the child, out of mercy and sympathy, than for that child to be born and to live a life of difficulty and pain.


Mrs. Tebow cared more about a beating heart than about her quality of life. That is called love! Whatever happened to such a concept in our culture? What a shame that we care more about ourselves than about the future.


Nonetheless, though we all celebrate the deserved accomplishments of this young quarterback, let us also celebrate the power of defending life and standing firm to our convictions. Pam Tebow would have never know what impact her infant son would one day have. But even if he became a nobody (by our societies definition), Pam would still have believed that giving birth to a baby boy was the greatest decision she ever made, next to accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.


I pray that our culture looses it's taste for blood, and instead embraces life. Think of all of the great characters of history and think about how by today's standards they would have been aborted. Just think about Jesus Christ. Mary of Nazareth wasn't married yet, and so an anonymous abortion would have served her cause. Plus she was poor and from a poor family, and so the quality of life was at stake. And finally, her to-be husband was threatening to walk out. Another common reason for abortion. But thankfully, she gave birth to a son and they who was God in the flesh, the Savior of our souls!


I wonder how many Tim Tebow's have been murdered in abortion clinics over the years. According to recent estimates, 46 million. That's a lot of blood on our hands!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Colson: Stem-Cell Breakthrough

I want to point you to an article written by Charles Colson, founder of Prison Fellowship, concerning the recent breakthrough of the stem-cell debate. I hope to comment on it in the next few days, but in the mean time, read Colson's work. He hits the nail on the head here.

Here you go:

Just before Thanksgiving, researchers in Wisconsin and Japan announced a breakthrough in stem-cell research. This time, it was good news for those of us who believe in the sanctity of human life.

The researchers announced that they had “successfully reprogrammed human skin cells into cells indistinguishable from embryonic stem cells.”

The announcement at the University of Wisconsin was accompanied by the usual hype: The research “has tremendous implications” for medicine, drugs, and “transplantation therapies.”

The unusual part was that the leader of the research team, James Thomson, told reporters that these cells would, over time, replace embryonic stem cells in research—and he is glad of it, because he had moral qualms.

Not surprisingly, it was the possible resolution to this controversy that captured the headlines. The Philadelphia Inquirer spoke for many when it said that the findings have the potential to end the “dreary wrangle” over embryonic stem-cell research.
The news from Wisconsin and Japan is good news, and it is a vindication of those who argued that the sacrifice of human embryos was unnecessary. But this struggle is far from over.

To understand why, you need to understand what motivated many supporters of embryonic stem-cell research.

The first was political. As one liberal pundit put it, “embryonic stem cells, of course, were supposed to cure America of its affection for the religious right.” For many politicians, embryonic stem-cell research was a “wedge issue.” Its goal was not to conquer disease but, instead, to put pro-life Americans on the defensive, depicting them as uncaring fanatics. There is no reason to think that our opponents are going to stop trying to use the stem-cell issue against us even after this announcement.
The second motivation is worldview: specifically, “scientism,” the belief that scientific investigation is the only means of knowledge—that scientists can get answers to everything, including philosophy and morality.

So embryonic stem-cell research, scientism insists, must be free from any “restraints” or “interference.” Scientists—not political leaders and certainly not morally concerned citizens—should determine what it is or is not permissible in the lab.

In addition, scientism, given its materialistic grounding, rejects any appeal to the sanctity of human life. The Christian worldview teaches that humans are made in the image of God. From conception to natural death, life is sacred. The worldview of scientism teaches something entirely different. In that view, we humans are merely an interesting and potentially useful collection of cells and genetic material.
Nothing that has happened in the past couple of weeks has reduced the influence of scientism. On the contrary, “Science” is being credited with finding a resolution to the issue—and they will be back.

The only reason this breakthrough happened is that Christians stood firm for the sanctity of human life. And remember that we have had a president on our side. I remember when I congratulated President Bush for his courage in vetoing an embryonic stem-cell research bill. His answer to me was, “I didn’t have any choice: It was a moral issue.” I was never prouder of the president. But we may not have pro-life leaders in office in the future. So we dare not let our guard down.

Monday, December 10, 2007

D'Souza: Whose Scared Of The Word 'Christmas'

Dinesh D'Souza, author of "What's So Great About Christanity," has written an article relating to the so-called "war on Christmas." As most know, over the past few years, Americans have debated over the politically correctness of Christmas and how the private market should deal with it. Is it intolerant or offensive to say "Merry Christmas" simply because it has the word "Christ" in it? Should we rather change our vocabulary in order to include everyone with phrases like, "Happy Holidays," and "Seasons Greetings?"

To put it bluntly, it is a silly debate. There is no "war" over this issue, only a group of liberals and other wackos who don't have the spine to take a stand. It the English language and our cultural holidays offend you, that's your problem, not mine. I am not going to bend over backwards to make sure that everyone in America isn't offended by the words I choose to describe a national holiday.

If I all of a sudden have to stop saying Merry Christmas because it offends you, then you should be forced to stop saying Happy Holidays because it offends me!

Notice the hypocrital aspect of this debate. What our secular culture wants is for Christians to be silenced and to change, while at the same time, arroganty assuming that their way is the right way. That sounds like the same bigotry that Christians are accused of having.

So, if you want to say Merry Christmas, then by all means say it and don't be ashamed of it. For everytime we fall silent due to policital correctness and pressure from spineless wackos, then we rob ourseles from enjoying the freedoms that our founding fathers laid out and members of our military have died for.

Likewise, author Dinesh D'Souza defends saying "Merry Christmas," and he does so bluntly and eloquently. I encourage you to read his words. Afterward, I want you to read some of the comments that have been made by some of his readers. And then ask yourself, who are the real bigots of our culture? It certainly isn't the Christians!

Here is his article on the subject of the war on Christmas:


Grinches, that's who. And ACLU attorneys. And several corporate executives. With the ACLU, the motivation comes down to anti-Christian bigotry pure and simple. But why would corporations like Nordstrom, K-Mart, Best Buy and Home Depot ban the word Christmas? Why would they insist that "Merry Christmas" be replaced by "Happy Holidays"? Why would they rename "Christmas trees" as "friendship trees"? What's so scary about playing "Silent Night" and "O Come All Ye Faithful" and other religious carols?


Short answer: many corporate executives are invertebrates. Not all of them: leading companies like J.C. Penney, Macys, Amazon, and Wal Mart continue to speak unabashedly of Christmas. But other corporate executives are ever-so-worried about giving offense. Over the years they have been convinced, by the usual villains at the ACLU, that any religious references are objectionable to some litigious atheist or some hypothetical Hindu. To appease the feigned outrage of these minorities, the religious sentiments of everyone else must apparently be overridden.


To see how absurd this is, imagine if leading corporations started refusing to celebrate Martin Luther King day. When asked, corporate executives would say, "Well, King was a sort of controversial figure. There are people in America who are offended by what he stood for. In deference to them, we have decided to rename the holiday." You can imagine how the media would react to this!


Somehow it's okay to give Christians the finger. Christians are expected to be tolerant of others but others are not expected to be tolerant of Christians. I grew up in India where Christians are in the minority. Hindus and Muslims greatly outnumber Christians, and the main holidays are the Hindu festival Divali and the Muslim holiday of Ramadan. As a Christian I wouldn't dream of demanding that stores in India remove their Divali lanterns because they don't reflect my religious customs. How ridiculous would that be? Yet precisely such narrow-minded, prejudicial sentiments are responsible for the movements to ban Christian symbols in America on the occasion of Christ's birthday.


Christians bear some responsibility of letting this nonsense get so out of hand. The solution: Christians need to stop believing the atheist con. There is nothing in the Constitution or in the founding that mandates a public square monopolized by atheists and secularists. It's time to tell the ACLU to go to hell. Stop patronizing stores that outlaw Christmas, and to make your purchases at stores that aren't afraid to say "Merry Christmas."

Sunday, December 9, 2007

A Call To Prayer - Four Killed in Colorado Church Shootings

Christians in America have become so naive in thinking that they are safe from persecution and harm. Now, sermons about the persecution of the church isn't concerning death in the name of Christ, but name calling in the name of God. How wimpy we have become.

Let this be a sober minder of the dangers we live in. This Sunday, while many of us were worshipping God and complaining about the preaching that followed, at least four Christians were shot and killed in two churches in Colorado. As far as I know, police are unsure if the two attacks are related. Nonetheless, this should be a sober reminder that we are the enemy for many, even in this country.


I primarily want to call us all to pray. Pray for the families and friends of these church members. Pray for the churches. Pray for the ministers and staff of these churches. And pray for the shooters and their families. Let justice be done, but let us lead them to Christ.


This is not a time to point fingers or anything else. Rather, it is a time to pray. What the motives were, we may never know. What is important is that there is a God on His throne, and somehow and in someway He will be glorified.


To quote the early church father, "The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church." Let us pray that the Church in America will grow whenever nonbelievers see the support, love, and perseverance of a weeping Church that loves it's enemies enough to take them to the cross.


Here's an article detailing the event:


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) - A gunman killed two staff members at a missionary training center near Denver early Sunday after being told he couldn't spend the night. About 12 hours later, a gunman fatally shot a person at a megachurch in Colorado Springs before a guard killed him, police said.


The gunman at the New Life Church was shot and killed by a church security guard after entering the church's main foyer with high- powered rifle shortly before 1 p.m. and opening fire, Colorado Springs Police Chief Richard Myers said.


It was not immediately known whether the Colorado Springs shooting was related to the crime in Arvada, a Denver suburb about 65 miles to the north. Authorities in Arvada said no one had been captured in the shootings there.


A church member died of wounds inflicted by the gunman, Senior Pastor Brady Boyd said. Two others were shot and wounded at the church, where hundreds of people were milling about and parents were picking up their children from the nursery.


It was not immediately known whether the shootings were related, but Arvada authorities said they were sharing information with Colorado Springs investigators. The mission training program has a small office at the church's World Prayer Center on the New Life campus.


The church's 11 a.m. service had recently ended, and hundreds of people were milling about when the gunman opened fire. Nearby were parents picking up their children from the nursery.


Police arrived to find that the gunman had been killed by a member of the church's armed security staff, Myers said.


"There was a courageous staff member who probably saved many lives here today," Myers said.


Gov. Bill Ritter ordered state authorities to help investigate. The FBI and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were assisting, and officers combed the church campus looking for suspicious devices.


The three people injured by the church gunman were taken to Penrose Community Hospital in Colorado Springs, where they were listed in critical, fair and good condition, said hospital spokeswoman Amy Sufak.


New Life was founded by the Rev. Ted Haggard, who was fired last year after a former male prostitute alleged he had a three-year cash-for- sex relationship with him. Haggard, then the president of the National Association of Evangelicals, admitted committing undisclosed "sexual immorality."


The New Life church is one of Colorado's largest with about 10,000 members.
About 7,000 people were on the campus at the time of the shooting, Boyd said. Security at the church had been beefed up after the early morning shootings in Arvada, he said.


The first shooting happened at about 12:30 a.m. at the Youth With a Mission center in Arvada, a Denver suburb, police spokeswoman Susan Medina said.


A man and a woman were killed and two men were wounded, Medina said. All four were staff members of the center, said Paul Filidis, a Colorado Springs-based spokesman with Youth With a Mission.


Arvada Police Chief Don Wick said the suspect spent several minutes speaking with people inside the dorm. Peter Warren, director of Youth With a Mission Denver, said the man asked whether he could spend the night. Several youths called on Tiffany Johnson, the center's director of hospitality.


"The director of hospitality was called. That's when he opened fire," Warren said. Johnson, 26, was killed.


Warren said he didn't know whether any of the students or staff knew the gunman. "We don't know why" he came to the dormitory, Warren said.


Witnesses told police that the gunman was a 20-year-old white male, wearing a dark jacket and skull cap, who left on foot. He may have glasses or a beard.


Police with dogs searched the area through the night, and residents of nearby homes were notified by reverse 911 to be on the lookout. Medina said residents were asked to look out their windows for any tracks left in the snow during the night. About 4 inches of snow had fallen in the area in the past day.


In addition to Johnson, killed in Arvada was Philip Crouse, 23. Youth With a Mission said Johnson was from Minnesota and Crouse was from Alaska.


The missionary center identified the wounded as Dan Griebenow, 24, of South Dakota, and Charlie Branch, 22, whose hometown wasn't immediately known. One of the men was in critical condition, and the other was stable, police said.


About 45 people were evacuated from the Youth with a Mission dormitory and moved to an undisclosed location.


The missionary center is on the grounds of the Faith Bible Chapel. Cheril Morrison, wife of chapel pastor George Morrison, said Crouse had just hung up Christmas lights at her home and that Johnson was "an amazingly beautiful person."


Mimi Martin, who lives near the center, said she received the warning call at about 9 a.m. warning neighbors to keep their doors and windows locked.


"Why would anybody want to hurt those kids?" Martin said.


Darv Smith, director of a Youth With a Mission center in Boulder, said people ranging from their late teens to their 70s undergo a 12-week course that prepares them to be missionaries. He said the center trains about 300 people a year.


Filidis said staffers are usually former missionaries themselves and that the "mercy ministries" performed by trainees include orphanage work. He said he didn't know where the group being trained in Arvada was going to be sent.


Youth With a Mission was started in 1960 and now has 1,100 locations with 16,000 full-time staff, Smith said. The Arvada center was founded in 1984.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Update: Breaking The Law By Spanking Your Children

I want to give an update on the whole spanking issue. Recently, a Massachusetts lawmaker proposed a bill that would make that state the first in the country to ban spanking completely. This is absurd and foolish, to be quit honest with you, but this is not the first attempt, and many will follow. If this bill passes, parents could be charged with child abuse or neglect.

If you go to the link containing the news story, you will find a link that says "survey," that allows you to vote whether or not you think that spanking should be banned from Massachusetts. Whenever I voted, the votes where 3408 against the ban and only 177 for the ban. That a ratio of 95% compared to just 5%! Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised, and hopefully it reveals that there are still some parents out there who still have some sense in them. And besides, I think it's obvious that time-outs aren't working!

This whole debate is ample evidence that we are raising a bunch of wimps that will not be ready for the real world.

Comedian Brad Stine makes a good point whenever it comes to this issue. he debunks the idea that by spanking, we are teaching our kids to hit. Such an argument can be made for criminals. By putting criminals in jail, aren't we teaching them to hold people against their will? I'm just trying to be consistent. If we ban spanking, maybe we should ban all forms of punishment, including jails!


Here is a blog I wrote several months ago giving some of the Biblical, philosophical, and other reasons why spanking should be allowed, and why government should stay out of our business.






I don't know how many times when I was young that after I got a spanking for something I did, I would tell myself, "When I have kids, I'm never spanking them." Well, now that I'm married, and every time my wife and I are around family and friends and they ask us about having children, I have began to think more seriously think about the issue. I must say, it took me about a 1/2 second to come to my conclusion: I will spank my kids with or without the governments permission.


Well, there is a new bill in the California legislation that attempts to ban parents from spanking their children under the age of four. The bill was brought up by Assemblywoman Sally Lieber, Democrat. If the bill becomes law it would be the first law passed on the issue. Nowhere, in federal, state, or local law, in the nation is there a law that prohibits the act of spanking against children.


We all knew that this day was coming, and we can expect more bills in the future to be proposed, and maybe even passed, by other states. Modern psychology and child rearing has attempted to tell us that spanking only damages the child instead of teaching it responsibility, character, integrity, etc. Well, here's my problem with this bill and why I support spanking:


THEOLOGICAL


First, it is a theological issue. This is the main reason why I say that I am going to spank my kids with or without the governments permission. The Bible is very clear that a child must be spanked by the parents when it disobeys. The majority of the verses used are from the book of Proverbs:


Proverbs 13:24: "Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him."


Proverbs 19:18: "Discipline your son, for there is hope; do not see your heart on putting him to death."


Proverbs 22:15: "Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline drives it far form him."


Proverbs 29:15: "The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child left to himself brings shame to his mother."


Hebrews 12:7, 11: "It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline?...For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it."


It is clear then that godly parenting involves spanking and appropriate discipline. The Bible knows nothing of time out or anything like that (not that other methods are wrong). It is clear that the Bible sees spanking as a very important part of raising a child. It must be noted however, the Bible does not suggest beating a child or abusing a child, but appropriate spanking it does support.


LOGICAL


I want to ask you, do time-outs really help? I remember when I was a child, time-outs didn't really work on me. I have always considered time-out as an opportunity to rest and get my energy back so that I could go for another round. Now I'm not saying that it never works or that it shouldn't be practiced, but I am asking if it really helps? I don't think it does, and I'm not for sure that there is any credible evidence to support it.


We will oftentimes tell a kid to go take a time-out and think about what they did and why it is wrong. Do you really think that the child is doing that? Usually, their mad that they can't keep going and vow that after their time-out is over, they'll just go at it again.


However, if you spank a child, I know for a fact that the stinging sensation on their backside will get them thinking about what they did and why it's wrong. Though the child may get madder and pout more, it teaches them obedience and submission much better than pleading with them to listen and think about it.


Spanking to me just logically makes sense. I remember not doing things because I knew I would get a spanking. I remember trying to be my best at school, church, etc., because I feared getting a spanking. I did not fear my parents as if they were abusing me, I feared the consequences of my actions. That is godly parenting, and that is exactly the reaction parents should expect whenever they use corporal punishment.


Think about the rowdy, annoying kids you meet in public. You know, the ones that whine and throw a fit whenever their parents don't give them what they want, or want to go home, or whatever. What do you hear the parents say most often? "Wait 'til we get home, your going to take a timeout Mr," or "I want you to sit there and think about what you just did." Now honestly, does that teach the kid anything? I don't think so. But if the child knows that their actions and whining will lead to a spanking, they are more apt to obey and suck it up.


BIG GOVERNMENT IS ALWAYS A PROBLEM


Here is another question I have: How is the government going to enforce this bill if it gets passed into law? Some suggest that parents who spank their children should go to jail for up to a year. Does spanking deserve such a punishment? Should disciplining a child be a crime?


Think about it, are we going to have police monitoring our homes when we punish our children, or watch how we react to our children whenever they are being rude, disobedient, or whining in public? To enforce such a law would cost too much money and waste our time and the governments time. How about passing laws and giving suggestions that actually solves problems like crime, social security, etc. Why waste our time with this?


Anytime the government does something that makes it bigger only creates problems. We can see this in the economy, in society, etc. Whenever the government gets bigger, our freedoms gets smaller. In this situation, the government is essentially telling us that they can raise our children better, and so they must hold our hand while we raise our kids. In fact, some have suggested that first time offenders (give me a break) shouldn't get jail time, but should take a parenting class. You know, where the stuck up elites who are so far out there that they have lost their grasp with reality and treat Freud as a god. They are going to be the ones teaching the classes, not people living in reality.


Are we so worried about the children that we demonize parents? Now, I do not think that we despise parents, but at the same time, we are so engrossed with the innocent children that we almost assume that they never do anything that is deserving of discipline. And thus, we look down on corporal punishment because "innocent" children shouldn't be harmed, we say.


HISTORY


Have such laws and ordinances worked in the past. Well, let's look at one for example: schools. We took prayer and spanking out of schools, and many liberals and Freud lovers thought that this would end much of our problems in society. But has it? Has putting an end to spanking at schools solved our problems or created more? Obviously the latter.


The truth is, since students know that, by law, the teacher cannot touch them makes them more disobedient and more disruptive. I know because I went to a public school. How should a teacher deal with students who are disobedient and disruptive? They can't. The only thing they can do is take them to the office, and they can only send them home, call the parents, or send them to detention. And what a punishment that is. In detention, you get plenty of time to do whatever you want (for the most part). I use to joke that if I ever got behind in class, I would do something that would get me ISD (in school detention) and catch up. And while I was there, and when I got done with everything, I would try to solve world hunger. No wonder I had friends who were in ISD more than in class. That is not the goal of punishment.


When liberalism entered into our schools, they actually believed that they would solve many of our worldly, societal problems. The fact is that they have created more. By taking power out of the hands of teachers and administrators, and now parents, we have only encouraged disobedience in our schools. Is it not by chance that there are more bullies, school shootings, violence, in our schools now than when teachers could spank students? I don't think so. Do we really think that detention and medal detectors are going to put an end to such things? I doubt it.


It is no wonder youth ministers, pastors, mentors, etc. have such a hard time with students. They have been raised in a society where there is no punishment for their actions. Why do what your told if their are no consequences? I know I wouldn't have. This is a fundamental problem with liberalism; it's not practical and it doesn't work.


These are just a few reasons why I am against this bill and support spanking. But I believe that there are some exhortations that are needed when this subject is brought up.


BE CONSISTENT


As parents, if you say, "when I get home your going to get spanked for this," or "do it again and your going to get spanked," etc., then you must fulfill your promise. To be inconsistent only encourages the child to continue in their actions because they become convinced that their parents won't do anything. How many times have you heard someone say, "it doesn't matter, their not going to do anything about it." This is not good.


When you say your going to spank, then follow through with it. Also, if one action is deserving of spanking, it is always deserves a spanking.


USE COMMONSENSE


Obviously, not everything that a child does is worth a spanking. At times giving them a time-out, or grounding them, or sending them to the corner may be good. However, at the same time, do not be afraid to spank whenever the child deserves it.
I do not want to sound like one that thinks that we should be our children. I don't think that at all. I do believe that we should discipline our children, and that the parents are to be in control. I get sick and tired of seeing teenagers talking back to their parents or openly disobey their parents. This is not good. If the child is disobedient to the parents, how do you think they'll act to our laws? Probably with the same attitude.


Well, this is just a little bit of my opinion on the subject. One could obviously say more, but I think this gets my point across. I hate to think that by the time I have children, I may be breaking the law when I spank them. It is a sad day whenever our society throws discipline out the window.

Watch this video, and see how they treats the issue of spanking and the Bible. These "experts" know nothing of the Bible nor how to interpret it. A basic study of Biblical hermeneutics would be beneficial for these people.


Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Much To Be Thankful For

It seems like every year on the day before Thanksgiving, the media feeds us with bad news. This year, we are being informed about how crappy our economy is; the housing market is in trouble, we might be going in a recession, the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer (a template lie fed to us by liberals in this country), etc. They are also telling us that our country is in horrible shape: the world hates us, Bush is destroying us, we're loosing (rather, they want us to loose) in Iraq (actually we are kicking tail everyday over there), etc. And of course, not to mention, human caused global warming.

Despite all of this doom and gloom, we do in fact have much to be thankful for.

AS AMERICANS
The prosperity of this country far exceeds anything any nation has ever experienced in history. And it is available to everybody, and not just to a select few. The fact that everyone has access to the American dream is profound. The oppurtunities in this country are simply amazing. Those who have lived with nothing, have the oppurtunity to make something of themselves. Everday our economy gets better and more oppurtunities are open. As long as the government stays out of everything, the possibilities are endless.

We are also safe. This is something that no citizen in any nation in history can say with certainty. I am not concerned with the war in Iraq right now, rather the reality that we have a nation that is safe. That does not mean that we will never be attacked, for we have been hit on our own soil several times in our history, but Americans do not have to live with the fear of regime change, rebellion, revolution, or attack. We have the greatest military, and we are safer than anyone else in the world.

Finally, we are free. The dream of our founding fathers is being lived out by us hundreds of years later. We are free to speak our minds, serve our God, and vote for who we think is right. We have the freedom to debate and to have our opinion. Let us not forget this gift we have been given. Freedom is not a gift that we deserve, but rather others have fought for it for us.

We must be thankful for living on the greatest nation on earth in history!

AS CHRISTIANS
As Christians we should rejoice with thanksgiving abundantly. First of all, because we are redeemed. Despite the fact that we are worthless sinners in constant rebellion against our Creator, God nonetheless looked down and redeemed us. Let us never forget this. We do not deserve salvation, for we are wretched. Nor can we earn our salvation. Rather, God offers it freely because He was willing to make His Son a propitiation on our behalf. That is the gospel!

If we had nothing else in the world but to be redeemed, we have more than we could ever deserve.

Not only that, but this same God that has redeemed us has also commissioned us. It is an amazing thing to be used by our Father in Heaven. Despite the fact that we need work, He uses us. He trains us, leads us, changes us, and commissions us. Let us not look at living a godly life and being a witness for His sake to be a burden, but rather a blessing.

As believers we ought to be abundently thankful for all that we have been given.

CONCLUSION
How could we be so gloomy this weekend? If we realize what we have, we will forever be content. We deserve none of it, and yet we have been given these gifts and oppurtunities. So don't spend this weekend being bitter because the store is out of a certain toy your child wants, but rather be thankful that you have the money, the oppurtunity, and the breath to face the Black Friday craziness!

Be thankful this weekend, for much has been given to us!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Mohler: Never in the Closet...The New Face of Homosexuality

Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr., President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, has written an interesting article concerning homosexuality in our nation. I encourage you to read it:
________

The moral landscape of the culture usually shifts slowly, with barely perceptible changes that accumulate over a long period of years. This is not the case in our own times, for the pace of moral change now defies the imagination.

This is especially true when it comes to the issues related to sexuality in general and homosexuality in particular. The pace of moral change is now accelerated to the point that it is clearly visible and undeniable.

Evidence for this is found in a recent article published in The Boston Globe Magazine. Entitled, "Easy Out," the article makes the case that today's gay teenagers in Massachusetts find leaving the "closet" very easy -- because they never thought themselves to be closeted as homosexual in the first place.

Reporter Alison Lobron introduces her article with the account of Russell Peck, who declared his homosexuality as a high school freshman at camp:

One day Peck heard several female friends giggling over an attractive older boy, and the next thing he knew, he had joined the conversation. "The girls were talking about how cute he was. I said something like 'Yeah, he is so cute,'" Peck remembers. "It just kind of came out, and I was really startled by it." But his friends were neither startled nor uncomfortable. "They didn't miss a beat," says Peck, now 19 and a freshman at New York University. "They totally accepted me."
Emboldened by his friends' casual reaction, Peck, a slim young man with curly brown hair, told his parents that he was gay. He was only 15. Their response was equally positive and accepting. His mother, Nancy Peck, who lives in Concord, says her only concern was making sure that Russell was "safe, happy, and healthy." Her son shared his news with friends at Concord-Carlisle that fall, joined Spectrum - a school-based discussion club about gay and lesbian issues - and continued, he says, to feel "very comfortable" during his remaining three years of high school.
Lobron explains that a massive shift in the culture's understanding of homosexuality has produced what gay advocates have been promoting for years -- the virtual normalization of homosexuality. Friends, teachers, and even parents respond to declarations of homosexual interest, romance, and more with simple acceptance. Russell Peck's mom just wants him "safe, happy, and healthy." This assumes, of course, that homosexuality is perfectly consistent with "safe, happy, and healthy."

And that is precisely the point, of course. The elites have decided that this is what all the rest of us are missing -- that homosexuality is normal (even among teenagers) and our concern should thus be to make sure that gay teenagers are safe, happy, and healthy.
Lobron extends the argument:

In the relative ease of his coming out, Russell Peck represents what one educator calls the "next wave" of gay and lesbian teenagers: adolescents who have grown up with openly gay teachers, television characters, neighbors, politicians, and even parents and who take for granted the acceptance that earlier generations struggled to achieve. After all, this year's high school freshmen were in elementary school when gays began to marry in Massachusetts; for them, gay marriage is more status quo than radical. Most of today's high school students weren't even born in 1989, the year the US Department of Health and Human Services reported that gay and lesbian teens were two to three times more likely to attempt suicide than straight teens, sparking a wave of activism that has made many schools more tolerant places - and taught parents how to support gay children.

As a result of these cultural shifts, gay and lesbian teens are acknowledging same-sex attraction at ever-younger ages and questioning the concept of both "coming out" and "the closet." Increasingly, their challenges look less like the public health crisis of the 1980s and more like the ones their straight peers have always faced: How do you know when a boy likes you (versus just liking you)? How do you ask a girl out? And what do you do when your mom hears about your new boyfriend from one of her friends at the supermarket?

Everyone must be concerned about the problem of teenage suicides, whatever the cause of the teenager's crisis. The reduction in suicides among Massachusetts young people is truly good news. But the logic that the right way to reduce teenage suicides among those struggling with sexual identity is simply to normalize that identity is a moral revolution in itself -- and a revolution with obvious limits. Are any and all sexual orientations and identities to be normalized? Do we even have a concept of normal that means anything?

Lobron makes the significant observation that the legalization of same-sex marriage in Massachusetts has meant that this generation of Massachusetts teenagers simply assumes that homosexual unions are normal. This should come as no surprise, for some leading homosexual activists have long argued that this is indeed the main point behind the push for same-sex marriage.

One of the most troubling aspects of Lobron's article is the fact that children as young as 13 are welcomed to groups like the Boston Alliance for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth, where they are assured that their same-sex interests are just normal. Just imagine for a moment what that means as a cultural upheaval in itself.

USA Today also produces evidence of this moral shift in an article by Gary Gates on how these changes might play out as a factor in the 2008 presidential race:

Since 1990, the Census Bureau has tracked the presence of same-sex "unmarried partners," commonly understood to be lesbian and gay couples. From an initial count of about 145,000 same-sex couples in 1990, the 2006 data show that this population has increased fivefold to nearly 780,000 couples. The number of same-sex couples grew more than 21 times faster than the U.S. population did. So either gay recruitment efforts have succeeded, or lots more lesbian and gay couples are "coming out" on government surveys.

As a demographer, I say it's the latter. In a 1992 survey by the University of Chicago, 2.8% of men and 1.4% women identified themselves as lesbian, gay or bisexual. Ten years later, a National Center for Health Statistics study pegged that figure at 4.1% -- almost one-and-a-half times more men and three times more women.

More:

Meanwhile, support for gay people grows. In the late 1980s, Gallup polls found about 30% of Americans thought "homosexual relations between consenting adults" should be legal. A May 2007 poll finds this figure has risen to 59%.

If it's no surprise that Americans are becoming more comfortable living among openly gay men and lesbians, the Census data do pack a wallop that politicians ignore at their peril. Since 1990, the number of self-identified same-sex couples in Mountain, Midwest and Southern states has averaged a sixfold increase. Compare that with the more liberal East and West Coasts, where increases have been less than fourfold.

All this calls for a new awareness among evangelical Christians of how much has changed around us. Our challenge as a people committed to biblical truth has never been greater or clearer. The normalization of homosexuality is just taken as a fact by so many in our society today -- especially among those in younger ages.

Evangelical Christians must meet this challenge with both biblical truth and a keen eye on the cultural shifts around us. Our current challenge is not only to tell the truth about homosexuality, but to recover any notion of a moral norm when it comes to sexuality. That will take more intellectual energy than the evangelical movement has yet devoted to this task.

Commitment? What's That?: Recovering Marriage in a Culture That Took It Out of It's Vocabulary - Part 2

Divorce is a big business now. According to recent surveys, most marriages end up in divorce. Therefore, most children grow up in broken homes. What a sad testament for an "enlightened" society! So much for secularism and liberalism; it only tears down homes and leaves children without a parent (sometimes both).

Western society is obsessed with divorce. It is the direct result of human laziness. Thanks to feminism and other liberal movements in the West, couples don't see the point in "sticking with it." I mean, why should a guy remain in a relationship whenever he is only needed to supply sperm? Feminist are arguing that men are needed at all, let alone in the raising of children. And now, with the rise of homosexuality, marriage and commitment isn't necessary about children, but satisfying the self.

This is the problem with homosexuality: the motive. Many homosexual men crave sex without commitment, and therefore, date someone of the same gender with the same mindset. This is why many homosexual men have so many partners. It's about satisfying the self, not meeting the needs of their partner. Women are no different. Though homosexual men crave sex without commitment, lesbians crave affection and a companion with less sex. Again, it isn't about meeting the needs of one's partner, but having your own needs being met.

But don't assume this is only the case with homosexuals. Heterosexuals are no different. A thriving, healthy marriage isn't about whether or not your partner is meeting your needs, but rather, are you meeting theirs. Perhaps this is why marriage is so hard. A good marriage means giving up everything for the sake of the other. Our culture has lost this mindset. No wonder the divorce rate is so high.

Nowadays, getting a divorce is as easy as shopping on ebay. Anyone can do in just a few minutes. Some treat divorce as part of the process of finding that special someone, completely neglecting the covenant they made before God in the marriage they are leaving.

Divorce has never been healthy and beneficial for anyone, and yet our society acts like it is a wise option. Tell that to the children who don't know their father. Tell that to the teenagers who don't have a male influence in their life, while their single mom, working two jobs to make ends meet are having a hard time raising their children on their own.

So much for the sexual utopia movement! Broken relationships never mend anything, they only tear things apart. I should know, I'm a youth pastor. I can't tell you how many teenagers and children I meet and minister too who simply need a man in their lives. I don't know how many I meet that hate going home because their parents can look at each other without starting an argument.

I often wonder what this broken home generation will be like whenever they have kids.

In fact, I think I already know. Like Europe, America will likely follow in the trend of increasingly not getting married and not having children. The average European couple might have one child, and they might be married. And that's a big might! But why should they? Everything they saw in their parents own raising of children and struggling (oftentimes failed) marriage is something they don't want to experience. So why bother?

Well, here is more evidence of our on-demand-divorce-society. First, the West has introduced it's first Divorce Fair. I remember whenever I was engaged how my future wife dragged me to a wedding fair. For one, it was held in Rupp Arena, the home of the Kentucky Wildcat basketball team, and I am no fan of the Wildcats, I'm a Louisville Cardinal fan. Secondly, it was the Protestant equivalent of purgatory. I guess I had to go through it just earn treasures in heaven. :o)

My wife and mother had a blast, while I spent the entire time trying to keep the workers at the dancing booths from getting me to let them show me how to ball dance!

But instead of just wedding fairs, Austria is offering the world's first Divorce Fair. And no wonder. Divorce is a big business now. There, couples who see the end in sight, will have access to lawyers, detectives to catch their spouse cheating on them, divorce counselors (you know, to tell you that it wasn't your fault), and even people willing to test the DNA of your children to see who the father is.

Have we really sunk this far? Grant it, it is only happening in Austria, but don't be so naive and assume that it won't happen here. We are no different whenever it comes to undermining the original intent of marriage. We care more about our careers, than about Saturday morning cartoons with the kids and romantic dinners with your spouse.

A divorce fair is right up our alley. Why not? Anytime the going gets tough, we get going!!!! We are so spoiled that a little turbulence in our marriages and parenting makes us assume that we are crashing, and we therefore jump out.

Here's a simple lesson in marriage and relationships (and even in life in general): hard times and struggles, whenever we make it to the end, draw a couple closer together, not farther. But first, we've got to grow up, stop acting like selfish children, and make it to the end.

As if a Divorce Fair wasn't enough, you can now get a divorce online! And this is in America! Now, you don't even need to leave the comfort of your own home to divorce your spouse. Imagine what a surprise that might be whenever one's spouse comes home and find that their marriage "partner" has been online printing off divorce papers!

Here again, we see the carelessness of marriage. We treat everything in our society as optional. Marriage is optional, commitment is option, work is optional (cause you can always get Uncle Sam to pay your bills), and parenting is optional. I'm waiting for Webster to remove "commitment" from his dictionary!

It's a crazy world we live in, and it will only get worse. Remember what the Bible says about depravity: man will do whatever it takes to live for himself and make sin legal, normal, common, and accepted. So we shouldn't be surprised by this trend, it will only get worse. Between the 7 year itch proposal, a divorce fair, and divorce online, it is hard to imagine how our society could get worse in this area. But never doubt human depravity. Where there's a will, there will be way. And our society is looking for a way out.

Orthodoxy has been thrown out the window postmodernity has replaced it. And look at where it is taking us!
________
I have also reposted a blog I did years ago before I had a blog site. I put it on my Shortblog. Click here to read it.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Mohler: From the Bible to "Intimacy Kits" -- Goodbye to the Gideons?

It's amazing how "don't offend" me society is quickly becoming more and more secularized. We can see it in our politics, our favorite shows/movies, our music, our games, and now, our hotels. Out of fear of not offending others, many hotels across the nation are increasingly not allow the Gideon Bibles to be placed in their hotel rooms. Heaven forbid we offend someone!

But what will replace this great tradition of our faith confronting the culture? Things that are more of necessity I guess. Some hotel rooms have already replaced the Bible with Al Gore's global warming book, "An Inconventant Truth." Now, they are being replaced by things like condoms, erotic games, tickets to local nightclubs, I-pods, and even a goldfish. It seems, yet again, that our oversexed culture has made it's decision: morality or sexuality. And it has chosen sex.

I have been to my fair share of hotel rooms over the years, and I always check for a Gideon Bible. Although I always try to take my Bible with me on trips, sometimes I forget, and so their Bibles are of immense importance to me. But now, it seems, instead of a Bible, I might open the drawer and find the latest sex game craze. That will be awkward if I'm traveling with my youth group or a group of my male friends!

I find it interesting that out of fear of offending those who don't believe in Christianity and/or the Bible, they have replaced them with something that is equally offensive to Christians. That's the way our culture of "don't offend me" works. If it is Christianity that offends you, we will respond by normalizing offending Christianity. Somehow that seems fair to our culture.

Here is yet another example of the culture that we live in and the fact that it isn't going to get any easier to be a Christian. No longer will it be the norm.

Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr., President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, has written an article concerning this development. He makes some excellent points, and I encourage you to read what he has to say. I want to reiterate what Mohler says at the end of his article, "Think of this the next time you are in a hotel room. Check the bedside table for a Gideons Bible. When you find one, thank the hotel management. And, when you have the opportunity, thank the Gideons."

___________

No more Gideons Bibles in hotel rooms? That is the point of an article published in the online edition of Newsweek. Reporter Roya Wolverson explains that the trend in upscale hotels is to include no Bible among the room furnishings.

The Gideons, founded in 1899, have distributed millions of Bibles and New Testaments in scores of languages worldwide. The availability of a Bible in millions of hotel rooms is explained by the fact that Gideons International was founded after two traveling businessmen met as both were staying in a hotel in 1898. After discovering that both were Christians they shared their evening devotional together. Later, along with a third man, they agreed to start a ministry devoted to the needs of the traveling public. This led to their spectacularly successful effort to get the Bible into millions of hotel rooms.

Now, it seems, some hotel chains think the Bible no longer belongs in the hotel room:

In the rooms of Manhattan's trendy Soho Grand Hotel guests can enjoy an eclectic selection of underground music, iPod docking stations, flat-screen TVs and even the living company of a complimentary goldfish. But, alas, the word of God is nowhere to be found. Unlike traditional hotels, the 10-year-old boutique has never put Bibles in its guest rooms, because "society evolves," says hotel spokeswoman Lori DeBlois. Providing Bibles would mean the hotel "would have to take care of every guest's belief."

What might be surprising to many Americans is that the Bible-free room isn't a development just in hip New York City hotels. Across the country upscale accommodations are doing away with the Bible as a standard room amenity. And in its stead have arrived a slew of "lifestyle" products that cater to a younger, hipper (and presumably less religious) clientele. Since 2001 the number of luxury hotels with religious materials in the rooms has dropped by 18 percent, according to the American Hotel and Lodging Association. The Nashville-based Gideons International, which has distributed copies of the Christian scripture to hotels since 1908, declined to comment on this trend.

This is just another dimension of our cultural situation. These days, providing (or allowing) Bibles furnished in hotel rooms is potentially controversial. As the spokesperson quoted above implied, allowing the Bible and not allowing other materials might be seen as pushing an agenda.
This is sad, but it is also a sign of the times. Gladly, not all chains and hotels have followed this example. The fact is that many persons have come to faith in Jesus Christ by reading a Bible supplied to their hotel room by the Gideons. Many others have turned to the Bible when in crisis. Some have even decided against suicide when they read from the Gideon's Bible. Are they now to look for salvation and solace from an iPod docking station or a goldfish?
Wolverson reports further:

The reason for hotels' shift in focus? Leisure travel is up, business travel is down, and younger generations are entering the hotel market. Leisure now leads business by more than 10 percent in U.S. hotel stays, according to travel research firm D. K. Shifflet & Associates. With the lead in technology, design and nightlife, the boutique market is where Generations X, Y and young baby boomers want to be, says CEO Doug Shifflet. And with the boutique sector booming (boutique hotel rooms have grown by 23 percent since 2001, compared to only 7 percent for standard rooms), more traditional chains, which once catered to business clientele, are now desperate to emulate.

So the hotels want to be hip, and the presence of a Bible in the drawer is unhip? Perhaps this section of Wolverson's report explains the impetus:

Edgier chains like the W provide "intimacy kits" with condoms in the minibar, while New York's Mercer Hotel supplies a free condom in each bathroom. Neither has Bibles. Since its recent renovation, the Sofitel L.A. offers a tantalizing lovers' dice game: roll one die for the action to be performed (for example, "kiss," "lick") and the other for the associated body part. The hotel's "mile high" kit, sold in the revamped gift shop, includes a condom, a mini vibrator, a feather tickler and lubricant. The new Indigo hotel in Scottsdale, Ariz., a "branded boutique" launched by InterContinental, also has no Bibles, but it does offer a "One Night Stand" package for guests seeking VIP treatment at local nightclubs and late checkout for the hazy morning after.

So it turns out that the real story is not just the absence of the Bible in many hotel rooms, but the presence of very different materials, from complimentary condoms to erotic dice games. That does help to explain things.

This development is another reminder that we are living in a time of tremendous cultural and moral change. The absence of Gideons Bibles from an increasing number of hotel rooms tells us something about the secularization, sexualization, and extreme sensitivities of our age.
It also tells us that there will be no Bibles available in those hotel rooms when travelers need them, and that is a tragedy by any measure.

Think of this the next time you are in a hotel room. Check the bedside table for a Gideons Bible. When you find one, thank the hotel management. And, when you have the opportunity, thank the Gideons.