We find ourselves in this "Inter Holiday" period,
between the past national observances of New Years
Day, Presidents' Day and Memorial Day ... and the
future observance of Independence Day on the 4th
of July. This lull between national holidays provides
us with a good opportunity to pause, spend some time
in reflection, and try to grasp just where we are, as
seen from an Evangelical Christian perspective.

Where to start? From the viewpoint of Americans,
the boundaries of this holiday interval are significant:
we have just observed Memorial Day, which was
established as a day to remember and commemorate
the ultimate sacrifices of our military in the wars in which
our nation has been engaged ... and we will next be
observing, on a national basis, Independence Day,
known simply as "the 4th." We are, here in America,
basically a patriotic people, and in this interval between
these two patriotic holidays, as American Christians we
should give thanks to God for the blessings of liberty
and freedom which we enjoy every day of our lives.
Any glimpse of prevailing conditions in so many other
parts of the world should reinforce in our thinking just
how wonderfully we are blessed.

Unfortunately, the ongoing war on terror seems to be
crowding its way into the list of the most publicized news
events. Since the tragic events of "9/11," there have been
no terrorist attacks on American soil, but the threat of
more attacks has not diminished. In Britain some months
ago an active and viable scheme of attack through trans-
Atlantic airliners was discovered and thwarted. Last week a
threat of an attack -- apparently by al-Qaeda wannabes
-- was likewise discovered and thwarted. In the words of the
attack planners it would have been more destructive than
"9/11." Those two incidents, by themselves, demonstrate how
effective are the anti-terrorist detection and protection efforts
of our own agencies and those of our allies.

But this does not mean that the seriousness of those threats
has abated. Last Saturday CNN presented a lengthy program
of warning that the next global conflict could well be based on
the need for the planet's dwindling supply of oil -- and with
adequate supplies of a substitute fuel estimated at 20 years in
the future. Just a few days prior to the CNN program, a
similar warning was circulated on the Internet by The Daily
Reckoning, utilizing these headlines, and sub-heads:

A trickle of oil...
A flood of illegal immigrants...
A river of blood...

The lesson for us to learn? The intent of the terrorists of
the world -- familiarly labeled as "Islamofascists" -- is
clear and definite: the destruction and elimination of America
and our closest allies. Most of the Muslim world of nations
share this goal -- make no mistake about it. And there are
certain avowed aggressor nations who make open threats
against America -- Iran and North Korea -- in addition to
the less tangible threats of the nebulous al-Qaeda and its
fugitive leader, Osama bin Laden.

In this regard, just last week a California-born member of al-
Qaeda, Adam Yehive Gadahn, broadcast by video a warning
to President Bush to end U.S. involvement in all Muslim lands,
end all support for Israel, release all Muslim prisoners held by
us or anybody else, or face an attack worse that "9/11." His
words: "Your failure to meet our demands means that you
and your people will experience things which will make
you forget the horrors of September 11th, Afghanistan
and Iraq and Virginia Tech."

Meantime, in many parts of the world, terrorist activity is
well past the border-line of threats, and is real and definite. In
Lebanon, government soldiers have been waging daily heavy
duty battles with Muslims who are aided by Syria-backed
Hezbollah militants. The fighting is the most violent since the
1970-1995 civil wars in Lebanon. A long smoldering agitation
there erupted last week when the UN adopted a resolution
to establish an international tribunal to investigate the 2005
assassination of the former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik
Harin, apparently involving Syrian and Hezbollah intelligence
agents. The UN decision has split the country, reflecting the
strong influence of Syria on Lebanon. Fuad Saniora, the
Lebanese Prime Minister, welcomed the decision,calling it
" a triumph for Lebanon against injustice, crime and

And the nation Israel, always a target for Muslim attacks,
continues to exist in a dual state of both a threatened and
an active war, with Palestinian rocket attacks daily, and with
the Iranian president openly announcing again this week that
Israel would soon cease to exist on the face of the earth.
Israel lives in expectation of an attack from Syria, and sees
in the open relationship between Syria and Iran and the ever
present threats from the Hamas terrorists in Palestine as
evidence of a rapidly developing, soon-to-be experienced,
major conflict in the Middle-East.

The point is that while we here in America are -- at this time --
free from active terrorist attacks, there is an ever present
threat of future terrorist attacks on a severity level equal to
or surpassing "9/11" or anything else we have ever known
or experienced.

So there are some of the "important" issues at this interval
between major national holidays. Of course there are other
items like next year's national election. We have taken the
position that it is too early to discuss the candidates in detail,
and in fact we aren't even sure that all the potential candidates
have yet entered the race. When you realize that the 3rd most
favored Republican hasn't yet announced his candidacy, that fact
becomes more meaningful. There is another factor -- given the
dramatic shift in state primary dates, it becomes evident that the
final candidates for both parties might well have been determined
by mid-February.

And there is the pressing issue of immigration, which finds the
country sharply divided, with the majority -- according to the
latest polls -- in firm opposition to the comprehensive and
frequently labeled "amnesty" bill now being debated in the Senate,
and enjoying the enthusiastic sponsorship of Senators Kennedy
and McCain and President Bush.

For final mention there is the ongoing problem of homosexuality
and same-sex marriage, leading to the breakdown of the American
family, which former President Roosevelt termed the basic unit of
our society -- an endorsement obviously ignored or forgotten by
today's Democrats. The latest Gallup poll, released last week,
(if you put any confidence in such polls), showed a strong shift
in public opinion toward a more favorable view of homosexuality,
with 57% of American adults holding the view that homosexuality
"should be considered an acceptable affirmative lifestyle," and 47%
affirming that homosexual relations are "morally acceptable." On
this issue the American churches have obviously failed in their
responsibility to convey Scriptural teaching concerning this lifestyle.

Meantime the main stream media continues to divert public
attention from important issues to the more enjoyable recounting
of the antics of some irresponsible "celebrities" who ignore the laws
which do in fact apply to everyone resident in America, and violate
those laws simply because they are "celebrities" -- and often avoid
any penalty for their unlawful actions because they can afford the
most effective attorneys money can buy (and in the full sense of those
words). We have watched Paris Hilton whine at a minor penalty for
repeated violations of law, and have been exposed to hours upon
hours of "news" coverage, with more to come as she spends a few
days with special attention in a special level of confinement. And
almost equal attention has been and will continue to be devoted to
Lindsay Lohan for equal disregard of applicable law. There are more
important issues which concern the American people.

And one other evident imbalanced volume of attention has been
given to the the anti-war poster girl, Cinday Sheehan, who has finally
comprehended the error of her ways, has acknowledged that she
was merely a political tool of the Democrats.and will retire from
the public stage and stop undermining our national military efforts.

Not a bad time during this interval between these two significant
national holidays to reflect on the familiar words of Abraham Lincoln
in the Gettysburg Address, "that we here highly resolve that these
dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation under God shall
have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people,
by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth."

Afterthoughts . . .

May 27 was Pentecost Sunday, but a new group called TCPC -- or
"The Center for Progressive Christianity," adopted a new name for the
traditonal observance of the birthday of the church, and called the day:
"Pluralism Sunday." The movement has thus been defined by its leaders,
"Progressive Christians thank God for the diversity of religions
in the world. We don't claim that our religion is superior to all
others... Pluralism Sunday takes a big step beyond mere 'tolerance'
of other religions, and affirms that other faiths may be as good
for their adherents as our faith is for us." The problem herein is
identifying this heresy as Christianity, whose Founder said, "I am the
way, the truth and the life; No man cometh unto the Father but
by me." (John 14:6) This is our faith, described in the Scriptures as
"the faith which was once delivered unto the saints." (Jude 3) The
Christian faith was once, and for all, delivered; it is not a progressive,
ever changing belief ... it partakes of no "diversity."

A strange twist to an old practice -- In Melbourne, Australia, the Peel
Hotel, which caters to homosexuals, and has obtained a three year
exemption from discrimination rules, has been granted the right to exclude
heterosexuals from its bars, to insure a safe environment for homosexuals.
However, interestingly, the hotel's owner told the press, "We don't really
get any violence at the Peel. Historically the only violence has come
from lesbians, particularly when they start fighting around the pool
table." It wold be interesting to watch customers attempting to prove
what they are and what they are not.

But before we think the media is limited in its "news" coverage,
we have to realize that they now they have a new personality whose
antics they can feature for days on end in the person of Andrew Speaker,
the 31 year old honeymooner who flew to Europe last week. Then in lieu
of checking into a hospital in Italy due to his being diagnosed as having
drug resistant tuberculosis, he flew on a Czechoslovakian flight to Canada
where he rented a car to drive into the U.S. His apparent avoidance ploy
failed, and he is now confined in a Denver hospital for treatment. Himself
a lawyer, as is his father, this act of potential infection of innocent people
will doubtless keep the "talking heads" of TV news occupied for weeks
to come.

We in America owe so much to Europe so why shouldn't we share as
element of concern over these words from Pope Benedict XVI in a speech
before the recent Congress of the European Bishops Commission: "In
demographic terms it must unfortunately be noted that Europe seems
set on a path that could lead to its exit from history." The Pope was
lamenting the trend throughout Europe away from traditional family values,
a trend which me must surely recognize as underway in America.

A patriotic quote from one of our founding fathers: "The highest glory
of the American Revolution was this: it connected in one indissoluble
bond the principles of civil government with the principles of
Christianity." -- John Quincy Adams

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comments: evangelical_viewpoint@yahoo.com .

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