The simple question which Peter asked Jesus
(John 13:36) has found its way into literature,
as one of the most read books of all time, and
into the cinema with at least two films by that
name. But beyond that recalling of Peter's
question and Jesus' insightful answer, the phrase
has come to represent profound philosophical
thinking at critical times in our history. "Where
are you going?" or in broader terms, "Where
are we going?"

It is a good question for American Christians
to consider today. Where are we going? As a
nation we find ourselves in the hands of a young
president who is at best a left leaning liberal, but
apparently one with strong European-style
socialistic convictions. And arising as it does
from some of his pronouncements, the question
"Where are we going?" takes on some very
serious connotations. Consider a few -- just a
very few -- of his "firsts" as our apprentice

Well within his first 100 days in office, he
made his first overseas trip to attend the G20
Economic Summit in London. While there he
offered Saudi King Abdullah a deep and
prolonged bow from the waist in what was
described by the Washington Times as a
"shocking display of fealty to a foreign
potentate." The paper's editorial said further,
"The bow was an extraordinary protocol
violation ...There is no precedent for U.S.
presidents bowing to Saudis or any other

Despite the "spin" put on the report by glib-
tongued Robert Gibbs, the White House press
agent, the pictures released of the scene erase
any doubt that this bow of humble obeisance
was exactly as described.

While on that same first overseas trip, his
next stop was in Strasbourg to address the NATO
conference there. The UK newspaper, the
Telegraph, reported his statements in these words,
"His speech in Strasbourg went further than
any United States president in history in
criticizing his own country's actions, while
standing on foreign soil." He spoke of the
"arrogance" demonstrated by America in our
dealings with Europe; in doing so disregarding
the more than one half million members of
American military forces who gave their lives
during World Wars I and II -- in the words of
President Woodrow Wilson in April, 1917 --
"to make the world safe for democracy." The
president also said, “It is a fearful thing to
lead this great peaceful people into war, into
the most terrible and disastrous of all wars,
civilization itself seeming to be in the balance.”

Or in the words of President Franklin Roosevelt
as he spoke of "a day of infamy," in December,
1941, "Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at
the fact that our people, our territory and our
interests are in grave danger. With confidence
in our armed forces, with the unbounding
determination of our people, we will gain the
inevitable triumph. So help us God." As twice
in one century we went into battle to save Europe,
there was little "arrogance" demonstrated by the
two American presidents who had to make the
decision to go to war.

And still within those first 100 days in office,
President Obama scored another "first" before a
Muslim audience in Turkey where he repeated a
statement he had made in a June, 2007 speech,
"Whatever we once were, we’re no longer a
Christian nation." Then, perhaps realizing what
he had said, he added the words, "At least not
just," and went on to speak of there being Muslims,
Jews and atheists in America. He thus became the
first American president to deny that America is
a Christian nation, and by so doing he repudiated
the principles of belief which have made America
great and refuted the declarations of his presidential

We have often cited the nation's Founding Fathers
as affirming this fact; for example revolutionary
leader Patrick Henry who said: "It cannot be
emphasized too strongly or too often that this
great nation was founded, not by religionists,
but by Christians; not on religions, but on the
gospel of Jesus Christ." Or the great Democrat
president, Woodrow Wilson, who said, "A
nation which does not remember what it was
yesterday, does not know what it is today ...
America was born a Christian nation. America
was born to exemplify that devotion to the
tenets of righteousness which are derived from
the revelations of Holy Scripture." And as
recently as 1947 another Democrat president,
Harry Truman, wrote to Pope Pius XII: "This
is a Christian nation ... I don't think we
emphasize that enough these days. If we don't
have a proper fundamental moral background,
we will finally end up with a totalitarian
government which does not believe in rights for
anybody except the State."

And President Obama is planning for at least
two more "firsts," neither of which is something
to cause American Christians to rejoice.
(1) The People’s Republic of China is celebrating
60 years of hard core communism, and Chinese
sources reported over the weekend that the
celebration will include raising the flag of that
communist country on the south lawn of the
White House on September 20. Chinese
associations in America had applied to hold a
ceremony in front of the US President’s
residence, and Chen Ronghua, chairman of
Fujian Association of the United States, told
reporters that their application was approved
not only because of the sound Sino-US relations
but also because China is a responsible country.

It has been announced that approximately 1,000
persons will attend the flag raising ceremony.
While it is customary to display the flag of another
nation when officials of that nation are visiting,
this appears to be the first time a foreign nation's
flag will be flown at the White House to celebrate
that nation's founding -- whether or not it is a
communist nation.

(2) On September 24, the president will take
the unprecedented step of presiding over a
meeting of the UN Security Council. FACT: No
American president has ever before attempted
to acquire the image of what is being called
"King of the Universe" by officiating at a meeting
of the UN’s highest body. However, this act has
the potential for developing into a diplomatic
blunder of the most serious proportions. Mr.
Obama did not simply decide to chair the
session -- he has also set the agenda. Our UN
Ambassador, Susan Rice, has announced that
agenda in these words, “The session will be
focused on nuclear non-proliferation and
nuclear disarmament broadly, and not on any
specific countries.” Thus, there does not appear
to be a focus on those rogue nations of North
Korea and Iran under the subject heading of
"non-proliferation," but rather on "disarmament"
-- a subject which does not appear on the Security
Council's list of issues to be considered. And
with the strong anti-Israel bloc, this could
conceivably lead to the UN deciding to delay
any non-proliferation action against North Korea
and Iran until Israel has been disarmed.

Those are a few of the "firsts" recorded
during the first few months of the Obama
administration. From a Christian standpoint, the
question we asked on June 24 remains very
relevant: "Where are we going?" Many
concerns are legitimately expressed. Concerning
the president's disavowal that this is a Christian
nation -- with various polls reporting that from
82% to 85% of the American people claim to be
Christian, and perhaps 8% to 10% claim to be
non-religious, that leaves a scant 7% of the
population for all other religious beliefs -- surely
logic and reason would come down on the side
of this still being a Christian nation.

Concerning the flying of the Chinese flag to
commemorate the communist takeover of that
ancient nation, it would seem to be culturally and
reasonably understood that patriotic Americans,
if asked, would not favor flying the flag of a
nation whose governmental philosophy is so
dramatically opposed to the founding principles
of our nation. If these reports are correct, and if
the flying of the Chinese flag at the White House
does take place on September 20, we must hope
that those in charge who have granted such
permission, understand the differences between
the Christian founding principles of our nation,
and the communist principles of the Chinese
government. We must pray that is not a futile
hope on our part.

A thought provoking new version of the
Declaration of Independence, submitted to
one of our senior advisors by his nephew, under
the title "The Liberal Declaration of Dependence."

"WE hold our Opinions to be self-evident, that
all Life-forms should be kept equal, that they
are endowed by the evolutionary process with
certain un-undocumentable Rights, that
among these are Death, Taxes, and the '
guarantee of Happiness (or the equal
distribution of Misery) -- That to secure these
Rights, Governments are instituted among the
Elite, deriving their arrogantly unjust Powers
from the Forced Consent of the Governed, that
whenever any Form of Government becomes
conducive to these Ends, it is the Obligation of
the People to tough it out and like it, and to
Support the new Government, which lays no
Foundation on any Principles whatsoever, nor
organizing its Powers with any Form, which
to them shall seem most likely to create the
Illusion of Safety, saving them from Imminent
Demise... But when a long Train of Abuses and
Usurpations, regardless of who might Object,
evinces a Design to reduce them under absolute
Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty, to
Embrace such Government, and to welcome
these new Obligations regardless for their future
Insecurity...." (Signed: Jeff Gaddy)

We have continued to ask Christians to pray
for our nation and for President Obama. In
support of this request we remind our readers of
Paul's instruction in this regard: "I exhort therefore,
that, first of all, supplications, prayers,
intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for
all men; for kings and for all that are in authority,
that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in
all godliness and honesty. For this is good and
acceptable in the sight of God our Savior."
(1 Timothy 2:1-3) And let us never cease to pray
for our brothers and sisters in the Christian faith
who are experiencing persecution -- often unto
death -- for their faith in Christ in so many parts
of the world where Islam and other pagan beliefs
dominate the daily life of Christian believers.

A word of counsel from a Founding Father:
"No people will tamely surrender their Liberties,
nor can any be easily subdued, when knowledge
is diffused and Virtue is preserved. On the
Contrary, when People are universally ignorant,
and debauched in their Manners, they will sink
under their own weight without the Aid of
foreign Invaders." -- Samuel Adams, 1775

Some Random Afterthoughts . . .

We can't seem to help it: more "one liners"

"Conservative politicians believe they are elected
to serve. Liberal politicians think they were
elected to rule." (From Letters to the Editor,
Deseret News)

"'Washington is broken,' said Barack Obama
while on the campaign trail -- and now that he's
safely in office, he's busy making it worse. Much
worse." (Tom Winter, Editor, Human Events)

"Make no mistake: catastrophic climate change
represents a threat to human security, global
stability, and -- yes -- even to American national
security." (Senator John Kerry)

"If you want to test your memory, try to recall
what you were worrying about one year ago
today." (E. Joseph Cossman)

In case you hadn't noticed: The nation's jobless
rate has hit a 26-year high at 9.7%, against the
administration's estimate of 8%. More than
200,000 jobs were lost last month. Yet the White
House continues to claim its stimulus legislation
is working. When will this charade end? But not
all statistics are rising -- as one after another of
the performance approval ratings for President
Obama continue to slide, even the venerable
Gallup poll has now fallen to near 50%. Slipping
below 50% before November of the first year in
office would represent “the third-fastest drop”
since World War II, Gallup reports. Republican
Gerald Ford slipped below 50% in his third month,
and Democrat Bill Clinton during his fourth month.
President Obama is well on his way to a prominent
place in the record books.

The president's speech to the nation's schools,
much talked about and much criticized, is over,
and in a manner of speaking, "the jury is still out"
on the effectiveness of the speech. On balance,
the prevailing opinion is that could have been
worse. We did learn about him having home
schooling in Indonesia, with no mention of his
attendance in Muslim schools. There will be much
said in the days ahead, but in the meantime we
should reflect on the historical views of the
nation's Founding Fathers on this subject.
This is how American education began.

The Founding Fathers had strong views
on the nation's education . . . beginning with
George Washington, who said in 1779, “What
students would learn in American schools above
all is the religion of Jesus Christ.”

And Samuel Adams in 1790 spoke of the need
"to renovate the age by impressing the minds of
men with the importance of educating their little
boys and girls, inculcating in the minds of youth
the fear and love of the Deity… and leading them
in the study and practice of the exalted virtues of
the Christian system.”

Benjamin Franklin, in his 1749 plan for public
schools in Pennsylvania, insisted that the schools
teach "the excellency of the Christian religion
above all others, ancient or modern." In 1787
when he founded Benjamin Franklin University,
it was dedicated as "a nursery of religion and
learning, built on Christ, the Cornerstone."

And Benjamin Rush in 1790 wrote,“By
withholding the knowledge of the Scriptures
from children, we deprive ourselves of the best
means of awakening moral sensibility in their

But we seem to have gone a long way from what
the men who founded this nation and wrote the
Constitution's Bill of Rights, had in mind for the
education of our children. Of course, in those
days they didn't have the ACLU to contend with.

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