Wednesday, March 21, 2012 of our 10th year of publication
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A thought, a motto, for today, and for all the days to come:
"I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything,
but I can do something.
And that which I can do, by the grace of God, I will do."
D. L. Moody, 1890
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
AMID ALL THE NEWS CONFRONTING US DAILY, THERE IS
MUCH THAT IS BAD, BUT OCCASIONALLY SOME THAT
IS GOOD; CHRISTIANS CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE,
BUT ONLY IF WE LIVE ACCORDING TO OUR FAITH
To open this week's discussion, we could express our viewpoints on what is
happening in America during these days of constant upsets, but one of the
best email commentaries that we receive is The American Dream, and just
a few days ago they provided an introduction that says it so well. Important
is the fact that it contrasts today's governmental short-comings with the intent
of the nation's founding fathers. Consider it carefully. It's well worth reading.
"Do you have faith in the people running this nation? When answering
that question, most people would bash either the Democrats or the
Republicans, but...power is constantly shifting back and forth between
the two major political parties, and it seems like things don't really change
no matter who is in power...Do you have faith in the U.S. government, the
Federal Reserve, the state governments, the local governments, our public
schools and our financial system? Do you believe that the people that are
running things in this country are doing a good job?... In fact, this country
is caught in such a downward spiral that it would be easy to argue that
most of our politicians should immediately resign in disgrace. Our leaders
just keep coming up with one bad idea after another... If the founders of
this nation could see us now they would be absolutely disgusted with us."
Getting into our theme, first, a news story we all read this past week:
Saudi Arabia's "grand mufti," Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah, the nation's highest Islamic
authority, said no Christian churches should be allowed in the Arabian Peninsula --
which includes the nations of Yemen, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman and the
United Arab Emirates. Referring to a Kuwait parliament member's proposal that
that there be a ban on constructing any new churches in Kuwait, the grand mufti
said that it was "necessary to destroy all the churches in the region." And
Abdullah cited an Islamic hadith quoting the prophet Muhammad, who said on
his deathbed, "There are not to be two religions in the [Arabian] Peninsula,"
meaning that only Islam could exist there. Abdullah later added a clarification:
"Kuwait [is] a part of the Arabian Peninsula and therefore it is necessary
to destroy all churches in it." [It should be noted that Christianity is forbidden
in Saudi Arabia and there are no churches there.]
The logical question arises -- why should not America ban all Islamic mosques in
our country, since the Islamic countries are moving toward a ban of all Christian
churches? The answer, of course, is in our Constitutional right of freedom of
religion -- even though Mr. Obama is attempting via Obamacare to destroy at
least some aspects of that freedom, with an aggressive attack on not only the
Catholic church and its beliefs, but also on the beliefs of Evangelical Christians.
And in other news from the frontlines of persecution, Compass Direct
News reported this week that Iranian authorities have begun arresting Christians
in Isfahan, Iran's third largest city. The arrests re seen as the Islamists' effort to
discourage Muslims and converts to Christianity from visiting underground and
house churches. In recent days they have also arrested leaders and worshippers
at Anglican and other official churches. Since the beginning of this year,
authorities have arrested Christian converts in Tehran, Ahwaz, Shiraz, Isfahan
and Kermanshah. Iran is the fifth worst persecutor of Christians in the world,
according to the most recent World Watch List by the Christian support group,
And in Egypt, as Muslim extremists have seized control in the Arab Spring
revolution, thousands of Egypt's Coptic Christians have fled the country -- but
those who remain say conditions have steadily gotten worse. The Egyptian
Initiative for Personal Rights, an activist group tracking attacks on Egypt's
religious minorities, says Christians in Egypt are being targeted, as evident in
recent mob attacks on churches and Christian neighborhoods and Christians
being jailed for performing illegal church repairs. Also, under sharia Islamic
law, non-Muslims in Egypt have been denied many basic rights and legal
equalities, forcing Christians to take jobs shunned by Muslims, such as
collecting garbage, repairing sewers and scavenging in trash dumps. The death
this past week of Egypt's Coptic pope, Shenouda III, who had led the Middle
East's largest Christian minority for 40 years, comes at a time of rising fears for
Egypt’s 10 million Coptic Christians, who have felt increasingly vulnerable since
the fall of President Hosni Mubarak, and amid attacks on churches by hard-line
Islamists and repression by Egypt’s security forces. The rise to power of
conservative Islamist parties has raised concerns that Egyptian national identity
is becoming more closely bound to Islam.
And there is another current news item which isn't getting much attention
from the Obama-biased "Main Stream Media," and it also raises a logical
question. It centers around the fact that the Pentagon said last week that a joint
NATO-Afghan investigation into the burning of Korans at Bagram Air Field has
been completed. The investigation found that the “disposal process” of the
Qurans was improper but was not a malicious act intended to show any
disrespect for Afghans or Islam. The probe was conducted by the International
Security Assistance Force and the Afghan Ministry of Defense. That, of course,
is in accord with the initial reports which circulated after the Quran incident.
And here is the question that arises: The Afghans, essentially all Muslims, from
President Karzai on down, were outraged, and demanded apologies and
punishment for the Americans involved. The immediate results were rioting,
burning of the American flag, and the murders of six American military men.
And apologies were made, from President Obama, from the Department of
State, from the Department of Defense, from our generals in the field, etc. But
all over the world Muslims are destroying Christian churches, including Bibles
and other worship materials, murdering the pastors, and the members of the
churches -- but not one word of apology has been asked for from President
Obama or any of his administration, nor has one been offered from the leaders
of the Muslim governments or the leaders or followers of Islam. And the logical
question is "Why?" Why does Islam mean so much more to the people and
leaders of Muslim nations than the Christian faith does to the Christian people
and leaders of America?
And concerning just one indication of a moral breakdown in America,
The American Dream (referenced above), offered this comment: "Why are
wild brawls breaking out at Chuck E. Cheese restaurants all over the
United States? Sadly, the epidemic of Chuck E. Cheese fights that we
have seen in recent months is just another symptom of what is happening
to America on a larger scale. The truth is that the fabric of our society is
slowly but surely coming apart, and the rest of the world is laughing at us
... Of course it is not just Chuck E. Cheese that is having these kinds of
problems. All over the nation we are seeing brawls break out in public
places, we are seeing thieves become incredibly bold, and we are seeing a
general breakdown in civilized behavior. So where does America go from
here? ...Our country is changing and it is not emotionally prepared for
what is about to happen. Let us hope for the best for America, but let us
also prepare for the worst."
All of the above leads us into a reminder of our "Prayer Countdown."
And this is something that Christians can do in these difficult times, when bad
news often seems to outnumber the good. Months ago we announced a count-
down of prayer leading to election day, Nov. 6, 202. As of today, there are
230 days until Nov. 6. That means 230 days to pray for our nation, for
wisdom for our leaders, and for guidance as we go to the polls and vote for
new leaders to restore America to the kind of a nation our Founding Fathers
intended it to be. And we must never fail to pray for our fellow believers who
are daily suffering persecution and death for expressing their faith . . . and for
Israel, under the threat of extinction from the Islamic government of Iran. In
the Scriptures, Paul assured us that our God is able "to do exceeding
abundantly above all that we ask or think." (Ephesians 3:20) And as we
urge in the next paragraph: pray for the Supreme Court to make the right
decision on Obamacare in the hearings that begin next week.
Obamacare -- two competing prayer vigils. The Heritage Foundation reminds
us that "It has been two years this week [Friday, actually], since the passage
of Obamacare, and the firestorm it ignited has not abated but only spread
and intensified. Most Americans have already made up their minds,
understanding that until it is completely removed, the cancer of Obamacare
threatens not only our healthcare and our economy but also our most
fundamental liberties and constitutional self-government...Obamacare is a
cancer. We must not rest until we are rid of it." And next week the Supreme
Court will hear arguments as to the constitutionality of Obamacare. While the
justices listen to the opposing views, both sides have called for prayer vigils in
support of their viewpoint. We live in what is termed "The age of the polls," and
so we can almost expect daily reports from the pollsters on public opinion as to
which side God will favor. We agree with the stated assessment of The Heritage
Foundation, and for those reasons -- and others -- we urge prayer for the Court
to rule against Obamacare, or its legal name: Patient Protection and Affordable
Our busy, busy, well traveled president. Today President Barack Obama
is scheduled to begin a 5,000-mile, five-state, two-day trip on Air Force One to
campaign rallies in Nevada, New Mexico, Colorado, and Ohio. He is expected to
tout his energy policies, and brag on his administration's efforts to reduce the nation's
use of motor fuel. It is estimated that this use of Air Force One will consume
approximately 25,000 gallons of jet fuel, costing about $80,000. His support aircraft,
including the C-17 cargo jets that carry his limousine and other motor vehicles, will
each burn an equivalent amount of jet fuel.. But in an election year, with the high price
of gasoline causing political damage, he apparently feels that this exorbitant use of fuel,
and funds, is justified.
As always, it is helpful to balance the reporting of the Liberal, left-wing
media by presenting some examples of "What Others Are Saying"
Chuck Colson: "Any paper you pick up or TV show you turn on will talk
about the 'contraception controversy.'... this controversy is NOT about
contraception. It is about the ability of the government to limit the free
exercise of our religion. This is a religious liberty question . . . the first of
all our freedoms."
Robert Ringer (on Barack Obama): "Being a lifetime Marxist and
community organizer, he is breathtakingly ignorant of how the world works.
He misjudges people because he has managed to climb the political ladder
via the stealth approach. As a result, his Marxist mischief has gone virtually
unchallenged. Now, however, the natives are becoming restless and are
increasingly discovering that the Emperor of Envy has no clothes. They are
finally beginning to see him as the fraud that he is."
The Heritage Foundation: "In the Super Tuesday primary, the economy
was the number one issue on voters' minds, be they in Massachusetts,
Georgia, Ohio, or Virginia. And that wasn't because they were happy
about high unemployment and slow wage growth. Yet according to
President Barack Obama, 'the economy is getting stronger, and the
recovery is speeding up.' Of course, these things are relative. A
disappointing recovery is underway. It just hasn't touched the millions
of Americans who remain out of work, the millions more whose wages
can't keep up with inflation, and it doesn't offset the effects of high gas
prices on family budgets."
Robert Wiedemer (economist and best selling author): "The data is clear,
50% unemployment, a 90% stock market drop, and 100% annual inflation ...
starting in 2012."
Osama bin Laden (on plot to kill Obama and Petraeus, from documents
found in his compound): "The reason for concentrating on them is that
Obama is the head of infidelity and killing him automatically will make
Biden take over the presidency. ... Biden is totally unprepared for that post,
which will lead the U.S. into a crisis. As for Petraeus, he is the man of the
hour ... and killing him would alter the war's path."
Melanie Rickey (British fashion editor, on the fashion styling of first
ladies, Michelle Obama and Samantha Cameron): “In Britain, there’s a
big difference between being cool and being chic. Cool used to be the thing
you wanted to be, but now it’s all about being chic. And Samantha
Cameron is very, very chic.”
Gary Bauer (writing in American Values): "This is the reality of radical
Islam. It is an ideology of hate. It is the focus of evil in the modern world,
and Western Civilization must find the will to combat it and defeat it."
This week we found a nice assortment of "One Liners" for you to enjoy:
Max Lucado: “If God had a refrigerator, your picture would be on it. If He
had a wallet, your photo would be in it. He sends you flowers every spring
and a sunrise every morning… Face it, friend. He is crazy about you! ”
Dr. Manfred Kohl (at "Christ at the Checkpoint" conference on literal reading of
Scripture): "the theology of fools who delight in their own idiocy."
Tom Jensen (of the Democrat polling firm, Public Policy Polling): "The first lesson
you learn as a pollster is that people are stupid."
Patriot Action Network: "Liberalism is for losers."
Jack Marshall (in Ethics Alarms, on the Internet): "The web is teaching
cheating more effectively than our culture is teaching honesty."
Hans Urs von Balthasar (Swiss theologian): "Test everything; Hold fast to
what is good."
And here are a couple of classics which fit into this category:
Joe Biden (on Republican presidential candidates):“These guys don’t have a
sense of the average folks out there. They don’t know what it means to be
middle class." [Biden made the remark in a speech at the Georgetown home of
wealthy Senator John Kerry (D, MA), where some 87 guests paid a minimum
of $10,000 per couple to dine on char-grilled grass-fed New York strip steaks
and white truffle mashed potatoes, beneath a tent bathed in soft pink lighting; yes,
strictly "middle class" life style.]
Suzy Rice (columnist, on the Obama campaign film, The Road We've Traveled,
concerning the narrator: "Hanks as narrator of such politics is like dirty socks
on a soiled statue." [And there seems to be a connection with the book, The
Road We’re Traveling, by Socialist Stuart Chase, who just happens to be, as
Obama also appears to be, a Socialist and a eugenicist -- you know: do away
with the undesirables, especially when they’re extra vulnerable, can’t defend
themselves, being still in the womb.]
And as always, here are a few "Afterthoughts" from this week's research:
Oh, and about that Obama campaign film mentioned above; The Road
We’ve Traveled contains a gross inaccuracy. Specifically, it claims that General
Motors (GM) has fully repaid its federal bailout loan. It has not -- meaning the
pseudo-documentary contains a $25 billion error. Of the nearly $50 billion given
to GM, just under half has been repaid to the government. [Now that this error in
the "puff Obama" film has been pointed out, surely this outright lie be corrected.]
From CBN News we learn that the Department of Justice and the Federal
Bureau of Prisons announced a new plan to begin recruiting employees who will
serve as lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgender (LGBT) representatives for each
prison facility. The LGBT representatives will serve as members of each prison's
affirmative action committee, and will devote 20 percent of their workday to
"coordinating activities and programs designed to cultivate LGBT cultural
awareness both within and outside the institution." Pat Nolan, of Prison
Fellowship Ministries, summarized that "it makes no sense at all from a
management-of-the-prison perspective. It seems to us this is just a political
move; it has nothing to do with running better prisons." [It seems that lots of
unusual things happen in an election year.]
Barack Obama's "I wish I hadn't said that" Department. During his 2008
campaign, Mr. Obama labeled the increase in the national debt under George W.
Bush as "irresponsible" and "unpatriotic." Now that in just 3 years under his
administration the debt has been increased by more than during the entire 8 years
of the Bush administration -- what does that make him?
It is always interesting to note how our Founding Fathers, and subsequent
national leaders emphasized the same basic principles
"It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by
itself." --Thomas Jefferson, 1776
"I had always hoped that the younger generation receiving their early
impressions after the flame of liberty had been kindled in every breast ...
would have sympathized with oppression wherever found, and proved their
love of liberty beyond their own share of it." --Thomas Jefferson, 1814
"Republics are created by the virtue, public spirit, and intelligence of the
citizens. They fall, when the wise are banished from the public councils,
because they dare to be honest, and the profligate are rewarded, because
they flatter the people, in order to betray them." -- Joseph Story, 1833
"A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both."
-- Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1953
During our 10 years of offering a weekly newsletter and commentary, we
have never failed to be pro-Christian, pro-American and pro-Conservative in
our viewpoints. If you find this approach helpful, perhaps you would like to help us
to continue publication. We have no wealthy supporters, we accept no advertising,
we offer nothing for sale. We depend entirely on the support of our readers. Please
click HERE and send your contribution by check or credit card. Thank you!