REVERSING SHAKESPEARE'S WORDS
REVERSING SHAKESPEARE'S WORDS WELL
DESCRIBES THE G-20 CONFERENCE:
"NOTHING ADO ABOUT MUCH"
But that headline relates just to the major secular or
political news story of the day . . . for Christians the
major story commanding our attention is the never
ending remembrance of what history and customary
usage has called "Holy Week," that period of time
between the Sunday when Jesus entered Jerusalem,
to the Friday when He was crucified and the Sunday
when He arose from the dead. Palm Sunday, Good
Friday, Easter Sunday -- those are the days and dates
which remain forever as pillars -- "headlines" if you
will -- of the Christian faith.
Today we are midway through Holy Week. Surely at
this time -- if we should fail to do so always -- we
should pause and reflect on some of the truths which
establish Christianity as distinctly different from and
superior to all of the other world religions. Our good
friend and fellow Christian scholar, Dr, Gene Jeffries,
reminded us of those truths last week: "Christianity
is unique in that it is the only 'religion' that offers
mankind a forgiveness for sin. (Ephesians 1:7)
Christianity is also unique in that it is the only
'religion' whose Leader has risen from the dead.
(Luke 24:6) In fact, the Lord Jesus Christ is the
only 'religious' leader who ever claimed that He
would rise from the dead. (John 10: 17-18) -- not
Mohammad, not Buddha, not anyone else -- only
During Holy Week this year, let's put aside the Easter
eggs, the Easter bunnies, and focus our attention on
the eternal basic element of our faith -- the resurrection
of Jesus Christ.
To express a word of concern: it is difficult to
comment on all the issues confronting us in today's
news -- there are the tragic shootings in Pittsburgh,
in Binghamton, in Alabama and elsewhere . . . there
are the bodies of children discovered after pedophiles
have murdered them . . . there is the natural disaster
in Italy with hundreds dead and thousands homeless . . .
there are Christians in so many parts of the world
facing life threatening persecution . . . there are world-
wide violations of human rights as rogue nations
threaten nuclear attacks . . . our responsibility in all
of these situations is to pray and ask God to make His
will manifest to His followers. In the time in which we
live there is no more urgent challenge than for Christians
to be faithful in prayer.
And now back to the week's headline: for weeks
the news media had been stressing the importance of
the G-20 conference in London. There President
Obama would make his entrance on the international
stage among the heads of state of the leading nations
of the world who were gathered to seek a solution to
the economic crisis which has affected them all. Or if
such a solution could not be found, they would at least
agree on some united approach to the problem.
That was the announced goal. As for the result -- after
reading the formal reports and cutting through the "spin"
from the administration, one is reminded of the classic
line by Orson Welles in The Third Man: "In Italy
for thirty years under the Borgias, they had warfare,
terror, murder, bloodshed. They produced Michael
Angelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance.
In Switzerland they had brotherly love, five hundred
years of democracy and peace, and what did they
produce? The cookoo clock."
The G-20 conference produced a resolution to work
together and try to find a solution to the economic
disaster in which the world finds itself. And President
Obama invited G-20 members to another conference
later this year in New York.
As for our president's high hopes that he would charm
the NATO nations into sharing in the war in Afghanistan,
those hopes were also unfulfilled. There emerged a
pledge of 3,000 troops on a temporary basis to monitor
and oversee the upcoming election, plus a few hundred
civilian advisors to help organize the government, and a
few hundred troops to share in the fighting. Thus the
"surge" in new American forces, raised from 38,000
to 59,000, assures that this will remain virtually an
American staffed conflict. The NATO nations also
pledged $600 million to support the American strategy.
As of July 2008, the Congressional Research Service
showed the estimated monthly cost of the war in
Afghanistan as $2.4 billion. (That was, of course,
prior to the recent surge in US armed forces.) As of
that date the cost was $80 million per day. Thus the
NATO financial pledge would pay for approximately
one week of the Afghan conflict.
But President Obama's report included these words:
"Our allies pledged their strong and unanimous
support for our new strategy."
Probably the most notable picture, and possibly
the most significant event at the G-20 conference
was the one showing US President Barack Hussein
Obama bowing deeply before the King of Saudi
Arabia. This is something that no President of the
United States has ever done before, and is almost
beyond belief. 200 years of protocol for American
presidents were demolished in that act of humiliation.
Such a bow of abject obeyance signifies admission of
the superiority of the ruler who is being so honored.
But that, of course, is the Muslim view that they are
superior to the infidels who do not subscribe to their
beliefs. Then there is this aspect, as noted in a comment
on the Internet, "At least he is acknowledging one of
the people who made his election possible. He owes
a lot to these guys. The king will get a lot of good
use out of that photo."
The North Korean missile launch -- after they
had been warned by the United Nations not to go
ahead with their plans, the North Koreans totally
disregarded the UN, and world opinion, and
launched their inter-continental missile. President
Obama immediately called for UN action, but
after an emergency meeting of the Security Council,
no agreement on any rebuke of North Korea could
be agreed upon -- China and Russia felt there was
no reason for such a statement -- and even any very
mild message from the chairman of the Security
Council, would not be able to use the term "concern."
(Again, due to objections from Russia and China.) So
much for our reliance on the UN to do anything worth
while. And so much for any favorable results from our
newly developing friendships with China and Russia.
Let this point be made clear: we do not express
disagreement and criticism of just one political party
and just one administration. It is not so much a case
of what we are "against," but more a case of what we
are "for." We are for the Christian faith, Conservatism,
and the United States of America. It is when actions
are taken which adversely affect those three basics
that we express our concerns and objections.
We never tire of quoting America's Founding
Fathers on their views of this new nation which was
being formed: "It is necessary for every American,
to endeavor to stop the dissemination of principles
evidently destructive of the cause for which they
have bled. It must be the combined virtue of the
rulers and of the people to do this, and to rescue
and save their civil and religious rights from the
outstretched arm of tyranny, which may appear
under any mode or form of government." -- from
Mercy Warren, 1805, writing in "History of the Rise
Progress, and Termination of the American Revolution"
Some Random Afterthoughts . . .
Those great "one-liners" never seem to end;
here are a few more which came to our attention:
With respect to Obama's war against the churches,
"I think there's a clear to desire to replace the
church with a bureaucracy, and to replace people's
right to worship together with a government-
dominated system." -- Newt Gingrich
"Theft in the name of stimulus is still theft; most
of our nation's great problems, including our
economic problems, have as their root decaying
moral values." -- Columnist Walter Williams
"When Obama told us that he would 'totally change
the economic system;' 'totally change America' and
'totally change the world,' he wasn't kidding."
-- Col. Bob Pappas
And here's one we missed last week: "For April
Fools day we give you the cruelest joke of all...
President Barack Obama. The only problem is,
the joke's on us...for the next four, very, very
long years. -- Conservative Outpost
In the past two issues we have pointed out the
new "politically correct" terminology adopted for
some current events -- we are no longer to speak
of "terrorist acts" but rather call them "man caused
disasters." And we are not engaged in a global war
on terror, but rather it is an "Overseas contingency
operation." Now we are seeing the development
of new terminology to replace "illegal alien." Ingmar
Guandique, recently charged in the 2001 murder of
Chandra Levy in Washington, is an illegal alien. But
in referring to him in news stories, the Washington
Post called him a "Salvadoran day laborer;" ABC
News referred to him as an "incarcerated felon;"
CNN called him a "jailed laborer;" MSNBC used
the term "imprisoned Salvadoran immigrant;" and
it goes on and on. Apparently we are well on our
way to a new politically correct term for those who
are illegally in our country.
A different source of good news: an advertisement
by Human Events for a new book provides a welcome
testimony to the Bible: "For most Americans, the
Bible is a source of divine inspiration, moral
guidance, and the foundation of Western
civilization. But for an influential group of
academic, government and media elites, it's the
source of most of the evil in the world today. But
fear not: in The Politically Incorrect Guide to the
Bible, award-winning journalist Robert J. Hutchinson
turns the latest historical scholarship against the
mockers, skeptics and deniers to show that not
only is the Bible true -- but it is also the source of
Western ideas of charity, justice, reason, science,
and democracy." It is refreshing to see that the Word
of God still has strong support among real scholars.
And from the ultimate Founding Father: "The
spirit of encroachment tends to consolidate the
powers of all the departments in one, and thus to
create whatever the form of government, a real
despotism. A just estimate of that love of power,
and proneness to abuse it, which predominates in
the human heart is sufficient to satisfy us of the
truth of this position." -- George Washington, in
his Farewell Address, 1796
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