Saturday, March 11, 2006

The Racket of Conception

This morning I heard an hour long interview with Professor Debra L. Spar, Harvard Economist who has written a book on the Fertility and Conception racket in this country called: "Baby Business: How Money, Science, and Politics Drive the Commerce of Conception." "Eggs are being sold; sperm is being sold; wombs and genes and orphans are being sold; and many individuals are profiting handsomely in the process." You can read all about it in’s interview with Spar.

I am not easily shocked. I am also aware of how the birds and the bees work (with a BS and BA in both from NDSU). And I have kids.

We did it the old fashioned way.

There were three things in this interview that caused me to shake my head:

The number one cloning request is from parents who have lost a child, particularly older children. They just want to duplicate the lost Teen. This will happen soon on a regular basis and will be very disappointing for the parents. The new baby will look just like the dead child but will be different somehow. “Why can’t you be like your clone?” And will that clone kid ever be spoiled.

Children are being born to be donors. Parents have a child with kidney problems, bone cancer needing a marrow transplant, or a liver problem needing part of a liver. So, grow your own. Hundreds of In-Vitro embryos are produced and the doctor does an analysis of each one until he finds one that is a perfect tissue match for the sick child. That embryo is implanted, baby born and as soon as it is up to a decent tissue bearing age the suitable organs etc are harvested for the ailing sibling. I guess they let the 90% kid live. Such as it is. And, if he or she should develop problems with the remaining kidney we can always just create another donor babe.

There is a thriving market in embryo adoption. Since no one knows what to do with all these unused embryos and since it’s against the law to stem cell them (hooray) they are traded (and sold) to infertile couples, single moms, and lesbians.

There were several other graphic and disturbing issues in this interview and in her book. As a militant pro-life Christian I am deeply disturbed and can’t believe this is going to end up well. The slippery slope just got greased again. Not all progress is progress.

Klingons for Christ

I was speaking with someone last night in a ministerial role to a 58 year old woman divorced who works in a factory for $12 an hour. She has been there for 5 years. She has been divorced about that long.

She’s an artist. A darn good one. She would really rather draw than work in a factory. When she was married she did art. She has a 4-year degree in graphic arts. She is smart enough.

Factory life is security. She has a little tiny 401K. She gets minimal health benefits.

So, she stays at the factory for $12 and “Puts off” her dream of being a professional artist. She never will. She is too afraid and too timid.

Her soul has been purchased by the Devil. Not really but metaphorically.

Fear of deprivation and fear of failure has caused her to stop hoping. She’s marking time till she retires and then will mark time till she dies. 58 is too young to die.

Rest in Peace.

I am criticized and I'm questioned in this here blog (read the comments) about that mean old Jesus I love so much. I mean, wasn’t he that nice little man who walked around humbly doing boy scout type deeds and then died by some cruel twist of fate?

That’s the Jesus so many people accept. That’s the Jesus so many people believe lived.

But that’s not the Jesus who will cause people to abandon all like Peter did and follow him or to get up like Matthew from his office desk and walk away from a lucrative gig.

I wouldn’t follow the anemic Jesus and neither do you. If people see Jesus in that way they don’t know him. They don’t now him in his glorified resurrection. They can’t know him as God.

If that’s you I’m so sorry and I hope you find him. Or better, I hope he finds you.

Jesus would have been a great Klingon. Klingons would have loved the Real Jesus.

There was such an episode where there was a Christlike figure in Klingon religion. He was no wimp and neither is Jesus.

Some Christian Star Trek Next Gen fan put this website up. It’s great. I’ll never look at Worf the same again.

Now if that beaten down 58 year old woman would just get some Klingon Blood in her or better yet get the fierceness of the Son of God down in her soul she could break out of the chains that bind her to her past and to her sense of failure.

Like the old Klingon Proverb says: Today is a good day to die. If you knew you were going to die in a month what would you do with the rest of your life? I’ll bet you wouldn’t show up at the factory for 12 bucks an hour again.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Stealing Glory

I was in conversation with my brother. He related a story of a woman who had attended his church. The pastor gave a sermon. The woman was touched. She might have even come to Jesus.

People all around were giving credit to the moving sermon the young pastor had given. I don’t know for sure, but maybe more credit was given and perhaps taken than was due.

I know for a fact that when I speak and it touches people It’s not about me. I’m a vehicle, a gift given of the Holy Spirit. I also know that if I even try to take credit at any level for what God does thru me he may cut me off until I repent.

God is jealous, and he will not share His glory with any man. If any man tries to steal His glory that man is in jeopardy of being stripped or worse.

Paul the apostle said that some plant, others water and others harvest. That means that from beginning to end there is a process orchestrated by the Holy Spirit to bring people to repentance. If we don’t give glory where glory is due we will be accountable to God. That’s more than some phony, “Glory to God” redundancy which is equivalent to gesundheit in meaning. It also means that we must be very careful to not take any credit for the results of the efforts of those who went before you in other people’s lives.

So to the young pastor, I’m glad you were used. I’m glad you prepared. Be thankful God uses you. Treat it with fear and trembling. To others around him, be careful to understand how God does what He does. Sometimes He will even use a Jackass to accomplish His mission.

And, He will share his Glory with NO MAN!

Boston Legal is Shatner’s Best

I loved the first Star Trek series, Spock, Bones and all. When Next Gen came out I was pretty convinced I would hate it. I didn’t and have see every episode.

I think Willam Shatner was part of the brilliance. An almost serious Sci Fi effort and Shatner kept it on the edge of being tongue in cheek.

After the series went off we didn’t hear much from him. Several years ago he had a bit part as the giant head in Third Rock From the Sun. It was hilarious. I commented to several about his excellent comedic timing and capacity to capture the moment. If you haven’t seen those 3 episodes they are worth digging up.

I also said that it was amazing that a man with his comedic talents wouldn’t have his own series.

Then his wife drown a few years ago. I guess I thought he drifted off into oblivion after that. Sort of Dana Reeves style.


Well into his 70’s Shatner is more brilliant than ever.

If you haven’t seen Boston Legal on Tuesday nights you are missing a wonderful piece of work. My brother Steve turned me on to it. I have told several since.

A week ago I had a dental appointment. I was an hour in the chair getting a cap ground and fitted. The dentist was yucking it up with his assistant about Boston Legal. I said uguewbbuuuggskk, They agreed. Then on the way home still saying little more than DSOFUONGOSJ (Novocain does that to you) the radio talk show hosts on WGN were yucking it up about Boston Legal.

It’s pretty much unanimous to anyone who has seen it. Great comedy. A little left of political center.

But, seeing Denny Crain (William Shatner) hold fort and dominate the screen like he does gives this old guy hope I can still make it work. I’ll try.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Evicting Smoky

You have probably heard of the proposed sale of about 300,000 acres of public land owned by the US government, land that is not on the tax rolls, land that doesn’t support schools or services, land that the 2007 proposed federal budget from GWB proposes selling to private parties to raise money to support schools. Don’t get too excited. That’s an area about 470 square miles, a square of about 21 miles on a side, about the same landmass as the Spirit Lake Indian Reservation south of Devils Lake North Dakota.

At first blush this seems like a good plan. I have surfed blogdom for insight into this issue. There are the usual leftwing stuck in a rut nutcases who’s blog essentially says, “Sale of Public lands = Bush lied, WMD’s, Bush idiot, Abortion, blah blah blah”.

There are some thoughtful essays. They say nearly uniformly, we need to think about this, this may not be a great idea. You will find them by using the blogsearch feature on google.

This is a local issue. Conrad Burns, Montana has declared this dead.

I’m not so sure. Fundamentally I am against selling assets to pay current bills. If you keep selling your clothes to pay your rent you will end up naked. That’s a sight I don’t want to see.

There is balance. I have hunted in Montana. There are 30-acre parcels here and there which are unattached and useless. The government and you and I are not served well by owning this scrap. It is usually landlocked and fenced from access to you or me. The surrounding landowner uses this land as if it were his without the consequence of tax or liability. So, I’m ambivalent.

I just hate the precedent. Selling long-term assets to pay current bills is a poor “strategery”.

And I don’t want to hear that Toyota just bought Yellowstone.

Where’s Smokey gonna live?

Monday, March 06, 2006

Nice Little Jesus - NOT

I received a well-meaning response to the Old Tiger post below.

He quoted the Sermon on the Mount. OOPS! I have taught the Beatitudes. If you ever took the course from me you would quickly discover my take on them is very different from the pantywaist Jesus most mainline denominations teach. The Jesus I live and die for is the true and living God, mighty in battle, doing wonders, glorious in holiness, pulling down strongholds and victorious over evil. He is the substance of the warrior’s armor I wear every day.

Just so you are properly oriented here is a better way to see what seems to be at first glance a nice little teaching from a nice little Jesus with a soft impotent message, I need to help you. His message is a call to war:

• Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (Verse 3)
You recognize you have no strength in yourself, you know you are needy, but you know in whom you have believed. You are poor in Spirit. More of Him, less of you.

Blessed are the meek: for they shall posses the land. (Verse 4)
Meekness is great power under control. Moses was the most powerful man on the face of the earth but God called him meek. Not weak. Meek and submitted to His purposes, controlled but determined to know and do right. Jesus instructed those to whom he gave talents and power to "...occupy till I come." Luke 19:13b. Sounds like we are not only to take the land but become an occupying force as well. Sounds like war.

Blessed are they who mourn: for they shall be comforted. (Verse 5)
Sin causes the righteous to mourn. Their own sin and the successes Satan has over the world. They are best comforted when sin, death and the devil are crushed under their feet.
Romans 16:20 The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.

Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after justice: for they shall have their fill. (Verse 6)
Justice (Righteousness) is making things right. Making things as they should be. When crooked and twisted things exist the hunger for more of Jesus causes righteousness to reign in our hearts. It’s that lack of hunger and thirst that causes complacency and lukewarmness. Be HOT or cold or vomited out of His mouth. No middle Ground.

Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. (Verse 7)
Mercy is sown and reaped. If we allow mercy to control our vision we will see that sometimes the most merciful thing we can do is allow God to work in other people’s lives without our well meaning intervention. We need to understand the nature of mercy and when external mercy is unmerciful.

Blessed are the clean of heart: for they shall see God. (Verse 8)
Clean (Pure) in heart means that we have nothing against others or ourselves. We understand that our deeds or righteousness are as filthy rags. Our motives and intents must be lined up with the word of God. We cannot confront evil if we harbor hidden sin. Seeing God in all things means we don’t see man's reason. Our purposes and intent must be pure.

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. (Verse 9)
How is peace waged? By winning the war. Warring against injustice, warring against sin, warring against the lies of the enemy. Being a peacemaker does not
involve compromise. Peacemakers understand that when a person is at odds with the Love of God he is not at peace. So, when we bring a person to Jesus and them teach them to do battle with the sin and the attacks of the enemy we are peacemakers. Peace is won thru victory not surrender.

Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (Verse 10)

This badly translated passage can still stand. If you go to war, expect to be shot at. Sometimes you will be hit. Sometimes you will be wounded. You might even be killed. But yours is the kingdom of heaven. You will win immediately under persecution, eventually under persecution, or ultimately. It’s all about the Kingdom of Heaven. Persecution and the blood of martyrs builds a strong church. Look at China. Persecution and martyrdom has caused tremendous victory. They have entered the Kingdom.

Have we, have you?

This teaching demonstrates that the beatitudes are about living the victorious Christian life. Victory is the result of wars won. So, next time you hear someone preach on this passage, listen for the sound of cannon fire.

Then run to the battle!

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Old Tigers are more Dangerous

A Pastor Friend of Mine quoted a line from a movie which I quoted in a post earlier. The fact is, old tigers are dangerous, they have nothing to lose, they are fierce, they are abandoned. They know the predictable tactics of the enemy.

As a response a friend of mine, Gary Sabela created this picture. I relate to it big time.

I'm like this old tiger. I'm out looking for that Roaring Lion who is seeking whom he may devour.

In my mouth I bear the teeth of the Word of God and my Claws are armed with the Name of Jesus.

I'm on the hunt. Is it my last hunt? I don't know. It could be. Or NOT. You'll never know, I'm immortal till my testimony is complete. And you can't do anything about it till then. I smell victory. I smell Blood. I'm more dangerous every minute. I know no fear. And Satan, that's all you have as a weapon.

I want to put as many predatory lions out of commission who are trying to kill the innocent lambs who fall prey to him.

I'm on the trail. Look over your shoulder Satan. A Fierce Blood Bought Holy Ghost Filled Child of the Living God is on your Tail.

I picked up your scent at the scene of the crime you old Devil. We're gonna get ya. You'll burn in Hell forever. I have an advance copy of your demise.