Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Word of the Lord for 2009 - A Year of Judgment

I just posted the Word of the Lord for 2009 as I have for several years. Find it HERE.

Reviewing the prophetic word for 2008 I am astonished.

A few things the Lord is Saying:
  • Judgment of the Whore Church
  • Economic restoration beginning in spring
  • Judgment of unjust balances and rulers
  • An uncertain future for President Obama
  • The most important of all.... The BAALS torn down in response to the Prayers of the Saints
  • 2009 holds great promise for those who love God and are the Called

Why Blacks aren't Republicans even though they are conservative

The awkward co-dependence of blacks and liberal Democrats
Star Parker
Monday, December 29, 2008

What does Caroline Kennedy have in common with black America? If your answer is not much, I'd tend to agree with you.

When I think of Caroline, I think of Manhattan and Park Avenue, not the Bronx and Brooklyn. I think of Brentwood and Beverly Hills, not Watts and South Central Los Angeles.

But there is something that Caroline and black America do have in common. The Democratic Party.

Whether Kennedy succeeds in her effo rt to slide into Hillary Clinton's soon-to-be-vacated Senate seat will have little to do with her Democratic Party bona fides. Per her policy positions ticked off the other day, she is in perfect and predictable liberal alignment with party boilerplate. If she fails, it will be for reasons other than her views.

So what exactly is the common political ground that Kennedy bluebloods share with the 90 percent of America's blacks who vote for Democrats?

A careful look shows the deep internal contradictions of the Democratic Party and the complexity of the political psyche of black Americans.

Ironically, despite Democratic Party rhetoric about economic inequities and wealth and income gaps in America, those gaps are more pronounced inside the Democratic tent than inside the Republican one.

According to exit polls from November's election, Barack Obama captured the vote of America' richest and America's poorest. Fifty-two percent of those with incomes over $200,000 voted for Obama and more than 60 percent of those earning under $30,000 did.

Our wealthiest senator, John Kerry, is a Democrat, as is our wealthiest House member, Jane Harman.

The nation's two wealthiest men, Bill Gates and Warren Buffett are both, by all indication, Democrats.

What political aspirations can black Americans, whose median income lags the nation's share with these multimillionaires and billionaires?

There is little common ground regarding values.

Church attendance correlates reliably over time with party affiliation, and this remained true in this last election. Those who attend church frequently vote Republican. Those who don't usually vote Democratic. Except blacks.

Blacks, in fact, have the highest church attendance in the country. Seventy-six percent of black Democrats attend church at least monthly. Sixty-seven perce nt of Republicans do and 50 percent of white Democrats do.

A recent Gallup poll shows blacks more aligned with Republicans than Democrats on social issues -- moral acceptability of homosexuality, abortion, and sexual promiscuity.

On energy and environmental issues, blacks poll more closely with conservatives than with liberals. It's because these are pocketbook issues. Working blacks have little interest in paying the higher taxes and bearing the higher costs that will result from chasing global warming windmills and displacing cheap hydrocarbon energy with exotic government-subsidized alternatives. Lower energy costs also put blacks on the side of offshore drilling for oil and gas.

How about education? Wealthy liberals, despite having their own kids in private schools, oppose school choice. When a black family is given the opportunity to pull its child out of a failing public school and send him or her to a church school or another alternative, they are grateful.

So where's the common ground? Income redistribution. A recent Zogby poll shows 80 percent of Democrats, 90 percent of liberals, and 76 percent of blacks supporting taxing the weal thy to give money back to low-income Americans.

Despite everything else, blacks vote to stay on the liberal plantation. Pop psychologists would call the relationship between wealthy liberals and blacks co-dependence.

Republicans are wrong if they think they'll win blacks on social issues alone. They need to help blacks understand that lim ited government provides the economic mobility and opportunity they need and that the welfare, redistribution state does the opposite. They must help blacks gain self-confidence so that they can enjoy the benefits that can only come from freedom.

So far, Republicans have failed to do this. Which is another reason why they now sit on the outside looking in.

Copyright © 2008 Salem Web Network. All Rights Reserved.

Email Change

I have been asked for a correct email.

I won't tell you what it WAS. It is generedlin at

Please add that to your address book if you care.


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Mystical MANA of Obama

From Dummie Funnies:

"Does Obama have MANA???" I thought it was referring to Biblical manna as "Manna from heaven." However this mana being being referred to is the mystical Polynesian Mana which gives him supernatural power. You think I'm kidding. Look at this thread that worships the mystical power of MANA that Obama has according to those deists over at Democratic Underground.

If this weren't so sad it would be funny. Or as Julie wants us to say.....

God Help Us
. Or in Democrat talk, that would be Obama Help Us.

Monday, December 29, 2008

I have no recommendation or opinon on some things

I was asked by a good friend about a ministry I am marginally familiar with.

The Exodus Project.

I know almost nothing about it. I am asked often to give a "review" or Evaluation of various ministries local and national. It's a problem.

My problem is, ministry would be easy if it weren't for all the people. People being ministered to and people leading the ministry. It's a mess. Yet, it's the Mess God Uses.

My ultimate test for a ministry is simple, does it have the net effect of causing the hearts of those who come in contact to beat faster for Jesus?

If it doesn't draw people to the MAN Christ Jesus then I am not certain it will do much good. If a person connects intimately with the Living Christ he or she will change in ways that no ministry can replicate with a formal program.

So, about Exodus, I suppose it's well intentioned. What is more important than trying to change people is changing the heart of those who come for help, that is a sovereign action of the Holy Spirit. Nothing else matters.

If we want to change homelessness, divorce, adultery, gang banging, murder, poverty, and all the other ills confronting urban Chicago, first people must encounter Jesus one on one, so their heart is changed. A changed heart will change all those other things.

That is my single evaluation of an effective ministry. Most don't pass muster I'm afraid.

Even Eve Needs a Savior

No story, it just touched me. Reconciliation!

We all need to come just as we are.....Like Eve.

10,000 Hours or Ten Years - There is NO SUCH THING as an Instant Success

Malcom Gladwell has written a new book, number three of a series. First was The Tipping Point. Second was Blink.

Now he has written one called Outliers.
It is in my opinion the most interesting of the three. It may not be the big success but it has some premises that are really critical if you or someone you know and love want to become accomplished and successful in life:

  • It takes preparation, intense practice to become good at anything. 10,000 hours or ten years.
  • You must have the opportunity. Luck does play a part. Being in the right place at the right time.
  • Passion for doing or becoming something will drive someone to pay the price.
  • Talent is far less important than most people think.
  • Education while important is a smaller component than we be live.

I think these are important concepts because most people, particularly young people think there are short cuts to success. That being bright gets you somewhere. The reality is that to become accomplished and fluid in anything takes time, passion and experience.

I don't think the people who really need to see this will watch the half hour video. This is really bad karma for those who suffer from attention deficit disorder. They won't become accomplished without a passion and focus.

It's bad news. But if you want the whole story, watch the whole video interview and get a grip. You can become accomplished, but it takes time. Lots of time. 10,000 hours.

New York Times Hall of Shame 2008

Just so you know for sure that real journalism is dead and buried, there is a blogger who keeps an eye on the idiocy that passes for objectivity in journalism.

The TOP TEN dumbest things that the NYT did in the last year.

We must Apologize to Bernie Madoff

Paul Mulshine:

A lot of people have been comparing the Ponzi scheme allegedly run by Madoff to the Ponzi scheme run by the U.S. government, also known as Social Security.

That’s entirely unfair.

To Madoff.

From what I can gather, Madoff at least made an attempt to invest the money he got from early investors to give them the returns he promised. Those investments failed to bring in enough money and the scheme was doomed to fail sooner or later. But if Madoff had been a more brilliant investor, it might have worked.

The federal government, on the other hand, never tried to make the Social Security system work. The feds didn’t invest the money in the market. They took the money that we gave them and lent it to themselves, promising themselves interest. To be paid by themselves.

This scheme is even more crooked than Madoff’s.

John Langbein speaking at the law school a few years ago, said that if Wall Street tried to do what Social Security does they’d all be in jail.

Common Sense on Alternative Energy from the Wall Street Journal Opinon Page

Carbon Limits, Yes; Energy Subsidies, No

Wind and biofuel could become the next subprime mortgage fiasco.


There isn't much doubt that Congress and incoming President Barack Obama will try to impose some kind of limits on carbon emissions. The Republicans, girding in opposition, are denouncing global warming as a fraud, and claiming that either a carbon tax or cap-and-trade system will impose an unacceptable burden on the economy.

Their strategy of stonewalling cedes the game in what will be the most dangerous aspect of carbon legislation -- the effort to use the proceeds of an emissions tax to subsidize a dead-end expedition into "renewable" energy.

Whether global warming is real will probably not be known for another 50 years. There are signs, in the melting of the Arctic ice cap and warming in Alaska, that something unusual is happening to the climate. But skeptics note that world temperatures haven't risen since 1998 and that, if anything, recent weather has been unseasonably cold. Still, that doesn't mean we can dump billions of tons of CO2 into the atmosphere each year without eventual consequences.

A $50 per ton carbon tax would raise gasoline prices about 25 cents per gallon -- nothing we haven't experienced in the last two years -- and accelerate a move toward electric hybrids, weaning us away from foreign oil. Nothing catastrophic there. The same levy would raise electric rates about 10%, which would encourage conservation while pushing us away from fossil fuels.

The real danger is that, instead of refunding the tax to consumers, Congress will grab the money to subsidize the current craze for specific forms of energy, particularly wind or biofuels.

Wind generation is the prime example of what can go wrong when the government decides to pick winners. The idea that it can replace significant quantities of coal or natural gas in electrical generation is a fantasy.

Windmills generate power only 25% of the time and can change output minute-to-minute. A contemporary electric grid is a highly tuned instrument that cannot vary in voltage by more than a few percentage points without causing brownouts or damaging electric equipment. Under these circumstances, wind is more of a nuisance than a source of power.

Nonetheless, wind is our fastest growing form of electrical generation, due entirely to federal and state subsidies and "renewable portfolios," in which the government tells utility companies what to build. In a few years we could find ourselves in the position of Denmark -- which has built thousands of windmills without closing a single fossil-fuel plant.

Biofuels have already proven to be an even bigger disaster. They've gobbled up 30% of our corn crop and have leveled tropical forests, while replacing less than 3% of our oil.

Solar energy, on the other hand, has distinct advantages that will emerge from limiting carbon emissions without any additional subsidies. Besides being carbon-free, solar electricity is at a maximum when it's needed most -- on hot summer afternoons. This is when the utilities need "peaking power," usually provided by expensive gas turbines. Rooftop solar collectors could provide ample peaking electricity, particularly in southern climates where air conditioning is a way of life.

The real beneficiary of a carbon-emissions regimen, however, is likely to be nuclear power. Already anticipating this revival, the nuclear industry has submitted 18 proposals for 28 new reactors before the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Granted, many of Mr. Obama's environmental allies seem ready to lie down in front of bulldozers before allowing a nuclear revival to take place. But the president-elect's position seems more nuanced. His home state of Illinois, after all, gets 45% of its electricity from nuclear reactors.

A prudent position for Republicans should be: "Carbon limits, yes, subsidies, no." If a carbon tax or cap-and-trade auction is imposed, use the revenues to reduce other taxes so it won't cripple the economy. The thing to avoid is a wild, congressionally driven speculative boom in alternative energy. As Jesse Ausubel, director of the Program for the Human Environment at Rockefeller University, puts it: "Renewable energy could be the next subprime mortgage meltdown."

Mr. Tucker is author of "Terrestrial Energy: How Nuclear Power Will Lead the Green Revolution and End America's Long Energy Odyssey," published in October by Bartleby Press.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Death of Global Warming

I just wanted to publish the Obituary of the greater than Madoff Scam, The Idea that Man causes Global Warming.

The Wicked Green Witch is Dead. Ding Dong.

This article from the Daily Telegraph in England is worth Reading:

Easily one of the most important stories of 2008 has been all the evidence suggesting that this may be looked back on as the year when there was a turning point in the great worldwide panic over man-made global warming. Just when politicians in Europe and America have been adopting the most costly and damaging measures politicians have ever proposed,

Friday, December 26, 2008

Cheer Up — It’s Christmas!

Cheer Up — It’s Christmas!

Posted By Elizabeth Scalia

On December 25, 2008

The year 2008 is when things got totaled up, bills were presented, and markers called. We close the year hearing stories of staggering corruption, fraud, and mismanagement on the economic front, and in a social climate so broad-minded it allows every identity group to call itself “victim” and commence whining.

You can count on one hand the folks who feel contentment or hope these days and still have five fingers left.

Into this tumult arrives Christmas, and so convulsed is society that the season can find only a grudging welcome made by a distracted people. Christmas is costly in uncertain times. It is religious, when the “sophisticated” world is post-belief. Christmas is one more thing to feel victimized about, no matter who you are.

And it is so much damned work, too.

But then there is the story, and it has something for everyone.

An angel sent by God proposes an outrageous venture to a virgin Jewess who — at some personal risk — agrees to play her indispensable part. A quiet carpenter is enlisted to protect her and she is off — first to visit a cousin who is having a bit of an adventure of her own, what with her priest-husband suddenly struck mute and her aged womb alive with a rambunctious prophet. He makes his first pronouncement in utero, and the young Jewess launches into one of the greatest songs ever written. Then a census is called; heads must be counted so that taxes may be levied. The carpenter and his young wife travel by rough road to an obscure town, where they discover that obscure towns surrounded by bad roads are generally short on lodgings. They put up in a cave where, surrounded by oxen and asses, the woman gives birth to a son. She lays him in the manger, the food bin. In the starlit night, angels appear for a big musical number with a timely message: peace on Earth. There are shepherds and astrologers and even a king, but he’s a cynic.

Billions of people believe this story, which is only the prologue to a longer narrative. [1] They suffer for this story. [2] They survive for it. Sometimes [3] they die for it. For believers, this story brings tidings of comfort and joy.

But in these difficult days, perhaps even non-believers can take some comfort in the story of Christmas. Certainly they can find inclusion in a narrative that showcases the speech-impaired, the doubting, the empowered women both young and old, the he-man protector-types, the showfolk (two songs!), the policy wonks, the farmers, the friends of animals, the professors, the privileged, and even the service industries.

With only a little effort, one can find even more: wonder at a mythology that departs from any other mythology to introduce not a god, but God-made-man; esteem in the notion that humanity is so valued and beloved of its Creator that he would want to set his tent among theirs; joy in a story of stars and angelsong and new life, and most of all — hope: that what has gone wrong may be made right; that frightening realities can be borne and incalculable debts paid down, that darkness may be pierced and shelter may be found.

We do not always understand a story at its beginning, or even in mid-narrative; endings are not always obvious.

Like the story of America, the Nativity of the Christ is a story of people drawn together from disparate lives, toward something brand new, something troubling to some and mysterious to most. But it is only a prologue. The story goes on, with dreadful twists — slaughter of innocents, flights of refuge, prophecies, intrigues, trickery, and stupid mistakes that no shepherd or king or mute old priest could ever have dreamed up. The ending breaks your heart, until three days later it reveals its secret — that the story does not end at all, that it goes on and on, still. It makes all things new.

The ringing-bowl emptiness of 2008 would appear to be the conclusion of the American prologue; but the story of Christmas is an invitation to hope for all who feel hopeless, or whose optimism has run dry. Even if one chooses not to believe, it reassures us that mid-narratives are always full of conflict and chaos and traps and treachery, but the story goes on. Merry Christmas.

Faith in Madoff, Faith in Barack, Faith in Government ---- all Cheap Imitations for in Faith in God

Examples of faith abound at this time of year. There is the faith children put in Santa Claus to bring them stuff that magically no one seems to have paid for. Call it a "bailout" for kids.

There is adult faith which believes that a Bernard Madoff can do what no one else can: guarantee a consistent rate of return on money invested with him while others who invest the legal and old-fashioned way experience the normal ebb and flow of the stock market.

Then there is the messianic-like faith many have placed in Barack Obama, the faux messiah of our time, who has been sent by the political gods to deliver us, if not from our sins, than at least from George W. Bush. Those who place their faith in Obama see him as god-like and Bush as the devil. These metaphors serve them well as substitutes for the genuine articles, in whom they either do not believe or have re-created in their own image.

A Broadway play and film called "Doubt" has won fans, many of whom probably do when it comes to God. Bill Maher made a movie about faith, mocking those who believe in God and ignoring the warnings, "The fool has said in his heart 'There is no God'" (Psalm 14:1) and "the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing" (1 Corinthians 1:18). If Maher thinks the Christmas story is foolish, isn't that evidence he is perishing?

Shoplifting increases during the Christmas season and so does its spiritual equivalent: those who want the blessings of Christmas without paying the price. Laura Miller, a staff writer for Salon, engaged in this practice in a New York Times column, "It's a Narnia Christmas." Miller said about the C.S. Lewis classic, "That I'm not a Christian doesn't much hinder my enjoyment of either the holiday or the book."

Lewis' "The Chronicles of Narnia" series was not meant solely to entertain, though entertaining it is. The books are metaphors for great truths. Elsewhere, Lewis writes that those who claim Jesus as just a great teacher have it wrong. Lewis said Jesus is either who He said He is -- the Son of God -- or a liar, a fool, or deranged. Call him anything you like, said Lewis, but don't call Him a great teacher. That is an option He does not allow. Besides, how can anyone be a great teacher if he teaches something that is not true?

The mockers and doubters, like the poor, have always been with us. They have nothing new to say. Their unbelief is as familiar as it is predictable.

Faith is a gift, the ultimate gift. It is of far greater and eternal value than anything to be found under a Christmas tree. While clothes and toys wear out or are forgotten, faith lasts. It has the additional benefit of already having been bought and paid for by Someone else. It is the "substance of things hoped for, the assurance of things not seen" (Hebrews 11:1).

Faith cannot be taught (though teaching plays a role). No one is argued to faith, which is why it is fruitless to debate those who lack it. Better to demonstrate the faith one has than berate and belittle people who do not yet have it.

Christmas offers an opportunity to again consider what matters most. Especially this year with the anemic economy and multiple challenges to our misplaced faith in prosperity and politicians, now would be a good time to consider the song lyric: "Fame, if you win it, comes and goes in a minute. Where's the real stuff in life to cling to?"

The answer to that question is to be found where it has always been: Start in the manger and then move to the cross and the empty tomb and consider the carol, "where meek souls will receive Him still, the dear Christ enters in."

From Cal Thomas

You don't have that kind of faith? You asked someone for a Christmas gift, didn't you? Ask God for the ultimate gift.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

A Take on Three Kings and Jesus

I know, I Know. There is no evidence for there being three, they weren't actually kings, they weren't any wiser than anyone else, they never went to the manger in Bethlehem, the manger creche scenes are all wrong. I read the Bible too.

But there is a truth in the story that is profound and helpful at this time of year.

First two stories:
One is a friend of my Son Tim. John was lost in a bad storm near Minot ND. Couldn't find his way home. People in the car with him. He feared he might be stopped, stalled and not be found again except dead.

Suddenly, an old farmer type who apparently had driven up in some kind of vehicle knocked on the window. He said, "Are you lost" Yes said John. The man said. The man said follow me I'll get you back on the road. So, he said follow me, I'll walk you out. He walked ahead of the car for a ways, perhaps a mile and then waved them on. They turned onto a main road and began driving. It went find for a while, then all at once they realized they were lost once again. They knew their driveway was near, but they couldn't find it. If they drove past it they would not get turned around. Such is the nature of a blizzard in ND. In a quandary once again, once again a knock on the window. Same old man. Did he have a snowmobile? How did he find them once again? He told them, just follow me, It's only a few hundred yards. So, they did. Suddenly their mailbox came into view and they were safe. The man disappeared. John wanted to thank him. Since they were right where they wanted to be, John jumped out of the car to look for him. No vehicle. No snowmobile. No footprints from someone who had been there not a minute before. He was gone. Vanished. John believes an angel from God led him home. Of course there is a practical no supernatural explanation. Right? This is a man with an address and a phone number, John. You could verify it if you chose to.

Or how about this story about an angel appearing in a hotel corridor shortly before the remarkable recovery of a young woman. Angel? I don't know. I do know they believe so.

I mention all this because the story of the wise men has a message of hope missed by most.

Here's what we know for sure, the wise men knew of the prophecies in the Bible. They knew a king was about to be born. There was a manifestation in the constellations that indicated it was about to happen. So, they set out to follow the stars and seek for the new king.

It led them to Judea. They went to Herod and asked if he knew of this king's birth. Then they discover that the King was to be born in Bethlehem. Now, timing wise, this had already happened. Jesus had been born, perhaps a year or two before. The stars announced the event as it happened. They arrive after. Jesus, Mary and Joesph have already moved back to Nazareth.

So, how is it that a STAR led them. How did it lead them not to Bethlehem, but to where Jesus was as a toddler. It was the intention they had in Seeking the True King that caused God (now the rest is my opinion) to send an angel to lead them. He came as a shining star. Like the pillar of fire by night. This angel manifested himself as a bright star. They followed him from Bethlehem where they must have gone first since that was the prophecy. And of course the slaughter of the innocents (those two and under male children) in the city of David.

That angel star led them directly to and hovered over the house where Jesus lived. They came into the house and upon encountering the Manifestation of God in human form fell on their faces in worship. They gave him gifts of great value.

It was an encounter with God by the leading of Angels.

There are several references in the Bible where Angels are referred to as Stars. Revelation, Jesus says so, Isaiah 14. Many.

So, the word used as star and angel can be interchangeable. I would suggest that the star that led them to Jesus was in fact an angel.

They lead people. They led John. They led the mom and they led the Wise Men.

But then that's just my opinion. I like it. It's as good as anyone's.

The message of hope is this, If you seek Jesus with all your heart, God will even send Angels of all kinds to guide you to truth. I have known some.

Christmas 2008 at the Redlins

This would be almost 5 decades of Christmas as celebrated last night in Ellendale ND. They are not all the same. They are always fun. Interesting. Full of personalities.

Last night was no different. A few observations.

This was the first Christmas for the new Mrs Sam. It's always tough for wives or husbands who show up at these deals for the first time.

People come from a very long way. Jenny was there from Scottsdale AZ. Long way.

Lots of carols sung ending with the friendly beast song. Much food eaten. Way more presents changing hands than makes any sense at all.

What made this fun was all the cousins playing games. good games. Fun games. It was fun to see them all siting around.

Overall there were 26 of us there.

I know things will change. Life does that. We have maintained this for almost 50 years just like this. It's quite amazing. Someday it will all end.

That will be a shock to the system. To me too.

But Christmas never changes in our hearts and memories are more than pictures on a flash card.

Merry Christmas.

PS: One Christmas eve in 1968 we all sat around the TV and watched and listened as the Astronauts from Apollo 8 read from the first Chapter of Genesis from the orbit of the moon in space. I remember it well.

This is so Incorrect Politically, and so funny you must read it.

My Triumph Over Kwanzaa!

It is a fact that Kwanzaa was invented in 1966 by a black radical FBI stooge, Ron Karenga, aka Dr. Maulana Karenga. Karenga was a founder of United Slaves, a violent nationalist rival to the Black Panthers and a dupe of the FBI.

Kwanzaa itself is a nutty blend of schmaltzy '60s rhetoric, black racism and Marxism. Indeed, the seven "principles" of Kwanzaa praise collectivism in every possible arena of life -- economics, work, personality, even litter removal. ("Kuumba: Everyone should strive to improve the community and make it more beautiful.") It takes a village to raise a police snitch.

This is a holiday for white liberals -- the kind of holiday Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn probably celebrate. Meanwhile, most blacks celebrate Christmas.

Kwanzaa liberates no one; Christianity liberates everyone, proclaiming that we are all equal before God. "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus" (Galatians 3:28). Not surprisingly, it was practitioners of that faith who were at the forefront of the abolitionist and civil rights movements.

You have to read this whole thing. It' absolutely hilarious and will disturb you just a little. Just like Ann Coulter always does.

Worst Bailout Idea EVER - Protest Stupidity

Abortionists are looking for Government Money to kill more Children

12.18.08] An ambitious $1.5 billion plan, signed by powerful advocates of the abortion industry and submitted to Barack Obama’s transition team, is being dubbed the “Abortion Industry Bailout” by the head of a Washington-based watchdog group that tracks abortion legislation.
“After a decade of commonsense restrictions on taxpayer funding, the abortion industry thinks it deserves a bailout from President-elect Obama,” said Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List (SBAL), which earlier this week launched “Stop the Abortion Bailout” grassroots campaign.
The 55-page manifesto titled “Advancing Reproductive Rights and Health in a New Administration” and posted online by Obama’s transition team outlines 15 priorities for Obama’s first 100 days in office. It is signed by more than 60 pro-abortion groups, including Planned Parenthood, NARAL, the ACLU and the Sierra Club.
The goal of the SBAL campaign is to secure the 41 votes in the U.S. Senate necessary to filibuster any congressional action seen as a promotion of federal taxpayer funding for abortion.
Highlights of the plan’s marching orders include: de-funding abstinence programs; repealing the Hyde Amendment; increasing federal funding for abortions to $700 million; providing funding for UN-backed abortions abroad; and appointing only judges who support abortion.
Said Dannenfelser: “President-elect Barack Obama spoke of finding ‘common ground’ on abortion policy, but abortion advocacy groups clearly see an open door.”
Though the door may appear open, the abortion advocacy groups notably left one divisive item off their top 15 list—the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA), which would federally codify Roe v. Wade and potentially make abortion legal even if the renowned case was ever overturned. Obama has indicated in the past that one of his first orders of business in the White House would be signing FOCA into law.
One SBAL staff member told Charisma a top priority for the pro-life community in Obama’s first 100 days in office is preserving the Hyde Amendment, which was enacted in 1976 to restrict Medicare and Medicaid funding for abortions.
“To repeal that would be a major, major setback,” said Joy Yearout, political director of the Susan B. Anthony List. “It would just open the floodgates [to dramatic increases in abortions].”
It is unclear to what extent President-elect Obama will be willing to compromise on the issue of abortion. Pre-election rhetoric and his voting record suggest his position is firmly pro-choice, yet he appears committed to a reputation he’s developed that is known for inviting input from both sides of an argument.
A miraculous change of heart will be necessary though if the pro-life community is ever to find an advocate in President-elect Obama, according to Lou Engle, a prayer leader and prominent pro-life voice.
“[When] I consider that 50 million babies have been killed since the ruling handed down in Roe v. Wade that legalized abortion and that the incoming president plans to ensure the ongoing legality of this march of death, I cannot live in peace,” he wrote on his blog after last month’s elections.
“In this election we have bowed the knee to Baal and chosen prosperity over posterity. Abortion is a spiritual battle. The blood of babies is not another socio-political issue,” Engle wrote. “We must pray for Obama. He is not our enemy.”
On Thursday, the Bush administration issued the pro-life “right of conscience” regulation, which allows medical staff to refuse abortion-related work that they object to on moral grounds.
Yearout, who reported thousands already taking action in “Stop the Abortion Bailout” initiative, said SBAL and others worry that restrictions on abortions enacted during the eight years of the Bush administration could be reversed.
“The abortion industry and President-elect Obama are looking to overturn many of those restrictions and expand direct taxpayer funding for abortion through a myriad of federal programs,” she said.
The Christian Defense Coalition sent a letter to Obama on Wednesday appealing for a private audience with the president-elect.
“In a spirit of openness, dialogue and diversity,” wrote Patrick J. Mahoney, director of the Christian Defense Coalition, “the pro-life community seeks a first time face-to-face meeting with you to establish a foundation on how we can all work together to build a ‘culture of life,’ which honors equality and human rights, and ends abortion.” —Paul Steven Ghiringhelli

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

People staying away in droves

Growth? What Growth?

Last week the Ministry Report highlighted a New York Times article stating that the current economic downturn was resulting in a nationwide church growth trend. But pollsters from Gallup say not so fast.

According to a massive review of almost 300,000 Gallup interviews in 2008, the bad economic times aren’t affecting church attendance in the slightest bit. Data from the fall months—including part of December—shows that 42 percent of Americans attend church weekly or almost weekly, which is exactly the same percentage as last year (and, coincidentally, 1 percent lower than early 2008).

“It is … possible that certain specific churches or even types of churches (such as the evangelical churches featured in the New York Times article) have seen an increase in attendance,” says Gallup’s Frank Newport, “but that on a percentage basis, these represent such a tiny part of the universe of all churches that this increase is not reflected in broad, national church attendance percentages. … If there has been some alteration in church attendance caused by the economic bad times, it does not appear to have been of sufficient magnitude or scope to have altered ongoing church attendance patterns in the overall U.S. population.” [, 12/17/08]


This might be true in many churches, but in the ones I am well familiar with it's not. I was with the Pastor of a Church from Batavia during a social event Sunday Night. He has seen a significant increase in attendance. 5 people have made brand new confessions of Christ in the last month. This in a church of 130 people.

Churches that flow in the fullness of the Holy Spirit are prospering. In a time when people need something secure and real, the Holy Spirit is all there is. He is a comforter, He is the Paraclete as he comes along side, he is a guide, he is the presence of God in your life. If you don't know him well it can get pretty lonely out there.

Churches that keep busy introducing Him to their people are growing. Those who are like the Ephesians in Acts 19 churches are dying. They need what Paul brought to them:

Acts 19:1-7

Paul in Ephesus
1 While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples 2 and asked them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?"
They answered, "No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit."

3 So Paul asked, "Then what baptism did you receive?"
"John's baptism," they replied.

4 Paul said, "John's baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus." 5 On hearing this, they were baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. 7 There were about twelve men in all.

(New International Version)

This was about 20 years after Pentecost. So much for Cessasionist teaching. When did it cease? It didn't, still hasn't, won't!

Jeff Blackman says what do we do now?

I get an email from Jeff Blackman. He is an encourager. That's what he does. I thought it might encourage you.

"Hard work spotlights the character of people: some turn up their sleeves, some turn up their noses and some don't turn up at all."
- Sam Ewing, American writer / humorist

"The price of greatness is responsibility."
- Sir Winston Churchill, British statesman / prime minister

"Behold the turtle. He only makes progress when he sticks his neck out."
- James Bryant Conant, American chemist / university president


Jeff, when it comes to the future...I'm trying to hope for the best, but I'm anxious and concerned. How can I change my perspective? (italics provided)
Hope. Change.

Two simple words. They can bring the promise of a new tomorrow. A fresh start. A bright beginning.

They are words that work.

They helped get Barack Obama elected, the 44th President of the United States.

He proved, anything is possible!

This is NOT a political message. It's a business message. About how to capture attention. Stir emotion. Generate enthusiasm. Create action. And profit!

As I travel the country as a "business-growth specialist"...there are three common messages I'm hearing from CEOs, executives, leaders and salespeople:

1. "Business stinks. Sales are down. We’re laying off people."

2. "We're hanging in. We're holding our own. It's tough, but we're breaking even or still profitable."

3. "Business is actually up. We're adding people. Last month, this quarter... broke new sales records."

While there are of course nuances to the preceding, these are the mantras I'm hearing. In varied regions. From all types of businesses.

The consistency…is the inconsistency!

Yet, there's ONE constant.

These folks remain "hopeful."

And, they know "change"...(even if things are good), is required.

However, hope and change come with high expectations.

Because, hope and change alone...aren't enough to secure the "dawn of a new day."

YOU better make intelligent decisions and take meaningful action.

To get you headed in the right direction, here are fifteen strategies:

1. Focus on training, development and productivity enhancement

2. Plan and prepare, better to be pro-active vs. reactive

3. Establish "teams"

4. Have defined goals that are realistic, but that "stretch"

5. Monitor progress and modify

6. "Pilot" change before expanding

7. "Empower" your self and others...before, during and after the change

8. Link "change" to rewards

9. Find ways to improve, enhance or upgrade your products and services

10. Make "value" your differentiator, not price

11. Get closer to your prospects, customers or clients...ask them better questions, discover how you can improve their condition

12. Make referrals a part of your pipeline; ask for 'em, get 'em, convert 'em (Your customers already know you, like you, love you and trust you. It's a dis-service, not to ask, who else you can help!)

13. Pay close attention to your receivables and cash flow

14. Stay optimistic

15. Be patient

Your future...

Starts with "hope." It's your "wish list" for something positive to happen. It seems possible. Plausible. Likely. It's that gut-feeling, that desirable outcomes, are just around the corner.

Your future...

Then requires "change." New choices. New skills, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors.

Your future...

Then demands "action." To "get" must "do" something.

May you transform hope, change and action...into results.

And may you too prove, anything is possible!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Left Wing Tightwads - Generous with Other Peoples Money - Stingy with Their Own

From Shannon Love:

In the NYTimes, Nicholas Kristof asks why leftists give less to charity than do those on the Right. Why do the people who collectively advocate redistributing wealth from producers to the poor donate so little as individuals to the same cause?

I think the reason simple: Leftism isn’t about compassion. Leftism is about control. Leftism is about freeing the individual from personal responsibility for anything, including charity.

Redistribution via government coercion enhances the power of leftists in two ways: First, it takes from the productive segments of society, reducing their freedom of action and forcing them them to kowtow to leftists in order to try to avoid even harsher confiscation. Second, it creates a large population of individuals who depend on leftists for the necessities of life. A poor person in America today relies on government for food, shelter, jobs, medical care, transportation, etc. They can’t be defined as “free” in any meaningful sense.

The surest indicator of leftist true motives can be seen in the specific mechanism they seek to employ to redistribute wealth to the poor. Whenever possible, they employ a centrally managed system that takes the power of choice out of the hands of beneficiaries, and they wage open warfare on any type of redistribution mechanism that might let beneficiaries make their own independent choices. For example, leftists oppose voucher systems across the board. Voucher systems seem like the ideal solution. People get the money they need for things like health care, education or housing, and they have to spend on the need mandated but still retain personal choice and benefit from the efficiency and flexibility of the free market.

Yet, leftists oppose vouchers-based redistribution with a passion. They base their arguments against vouchers almost entirely on the premise that individual citizens are simply too stupid to make their own decisions about their own lives. Instead, they advocate systems in which benevolent leftists will use other people’s money to force others to behave as the leftists wish.

Coerced redistribution also allows individual leftists to escape personal responsibility for making the world a better place. To receive accolades and garner self-respect a leftist doesn’t have to do anything more than verbalize support for the leftist cause du jour. If I were a leftist, I would feel that merely by writing this blog post (on a different subject, naturally), I would have engaged in an actual compassionate act. I could feel as good about myself as someone who, you know, actually helped another human being. Leftists off-load their responsibilities to care for others onto the state, leaving themselves free to pursue a narcissistic lifestyle with a clear conscience.

For the religious conservative, charity and community involvement become matters of deep personal obligation. They believe that each individual must account for their own efforts to make the world a better place. They don’t believe they can “outsource” that obligation to a third party. Secular leftists, by contrast, don’t even talk about their own personal, individual obligation to devote their own resources to help others. Instead, they blame everyone else for the evils of the world and demand that those people sacrifice.

Leftism always comes back to the power, status and freedom from responsibility of the leftist. Actually writing checks to the poor, serving on juries, being foster parents, donating blood, etc. don’t contribute to their power, status or freedom from responsibility, so they don’t bother.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Stupid Commercial ----------------- Santa is not coming to town, he's dying but environmentalists to the rescue

Jesus is NOT the ONLY way to Heaven....That's the message of our cuture today

Just in case you think I'm some sort of reactionary pushing against the new evangelical culture of today, in case you think this is all so much smoke without fire, I want you to see what Christopher Hitchens has written about Rick Warren. I have had issues with Rick Warren.

One he has stood firm on is the truth that Jesus is the Only way to Salvation.

It's a tough position to take, and the culture all around you hates you for taking it.

But, it's either true or we are all frauds who name the name of Jesus.

Here's what he wrote here in part:

That's all in a day's work for the wonderful world of the American evangelical community, and one wishes them all the best of luck in their energetic fundraising and their happy-clappy Sunday "Churchianity" mega-feel-good fiestas. However, do we want these weirdos and creeps officiating in any capacity at the inauguration of the next president of the United States?

It is a fact that Rick Warren, pastor of the Saddleback Church in Orange County, Calif., was present at a meeting of the Aspen Institute not long ago and was asked by Lynda Resnick—she of the pomegranate-juice dynasty—if a Jew like herself could expect to be admitted to paradise. Warren publicly told her no. What choice did he have? His own theology says that only those who accept Jesus can hope to be saved.

A president may by all means use his office to gain re-election, to shore up his existing base, or to attract a new one. But the day of his inauguration is not one of the days on which he should be doing that. It is an event that belongs principally to the voters and to their descendants, who are called to see that a long tradition of peaceful transition is cheerfully upheld, even in those years when the outcome is disputed. I would myself say that it doesn't need a clerical invocation at all, since, to borrow Lincoln's observation about Gettysburg, it has already been consecrated. But if we must have an officiating priest, let it be some dignified old hypocrite with no factional allegiance and not a tree-shaking huckster and publicity seeker who believes that millions of his fellow citizens are hellbound because they do not meet his own low and vulgar standards.

Now, this all from a man who is an atheist in spades. Why is he worried about if or when he might find salvation. I mean according to him there is no God. Why worry Chris? You'll be OK. Right. There is no heaven, no hell, no nothing, so when you die there's nothing to worry about. RIGHT?
Bailey Smith, one of the deputies of the late Jerry Falwell, claimed that "God almighty does not hear the prayer of a Jew," I was in complete agreement with him. This is because I do not believe that there is any supernatural supervisor who lends an ear to any prayer.

Or, is that nervousness I hear in all the big talk.

What're........wrong about all that.......

Hell is very dark, cold and lonely.

You'll have a long time to regret your choices.


This would have been the 20th anniversary of the Orphaning of our children

20 years ago today Peggy and I were scheduled to fly from Frankfurt to New York on Flight 103.

I don't recall why, but we changed our reservation and flew back a day earlier.

Then the plane we were supposed to be on blew up. Pan Am over Lockerbie Scotland was bombed 20 years ago today. I was 43 years old. Peggy was a day away from her 41st birthday. That might be why we came back early.

In any case, we didn't die.

No one knows the day nor the time.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Have yourself a Hopey little Changemas

Syndicated columnist

"See the USA in your Chevrolet!" trilled Dinah Shore week after week on TV.

Can you still see the USA in your Chevrolet? Through a windscreen darkly.

General Motors now has a market valuation about a third of Bed, Bath & Beyond, and no one says your Swash 700 Elongated Biscuit Toilet Seat Bidet is too big to fail. GM has a market capitalization of about $2.4 billion. For purposes of comparison, Toyota's market cap is $100 billion and change (the change being bigger than the whole of GM). General Motors, like the other two geezers of the Old Three, is a vast retirement home with a small money-losing auto subsidiary. The UAW is AARP in an Edsel: It has three times as many retirees and widows as "workers" (I use the term loosely). GM has 96,000 employees but provides health benefits to a million people.

How do you make that math add up? Not by selling cars: Honda and Nissan make a pretax operating profit per vehicle of around $1,600; Ford, Chrysler and GM make a loss of $500 to $1,500. That's to say, they lose money on every vehicle they sell. Like Henry Ford said, you can get it in any color as long as it's red.

In the 20th century, most advanced nations made automobiles but only America made them mythic: "Drive the USA in your Chevrolet!" sang Dinah. "America's the greatest land of all!" America had road movies. With car chases. Thelma and Louise drove their vehicle off the cliff and, unlike the Old Three, they didn't demand American taxpayers come along for the ride. But, if you didn't want to hit the open road, you could just hang around, being cool. In Chuck Berry's immortal quatrain:

"Riding along in my automobile

My baby beside me at the wheel

Cruising and playing the radio

With No Particular Place To Go."

Not if you were a European teen. Cruising was an American activity. A Saturday night out for a Brit meant hanging around at a rain-streaked bus shelter hoping the night service would show up. Even if you had a particular place to go, you had no means of getting there.

So many areas of endeavor that once embodied the youth and energy of this great land are now old and sclerotic. I include, naturally, my own industry. I loved the American newsrooms you saw in movies like "The Front Page," full of hard-boiled, hard-livin' newspapermen. By the time I got there myself, there were no hard-boiled newspapermen, just bland, anemic newspaperpersons turning out politically correct snooze sheets of torpid portentousness. The owner of The Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune recently filed for bankruptcy protection. The New York Times is mortgaging its office to fund debt repayment. The Detroit Free Press is cutting out home delivery except on Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays, thereby further depressing sales of delivery trucks in the Motor City.

The newspapers blame the Internet, just as Detroit blames Japan. But the Japanese have problems of their own. One day they'll get theirs. That's the beauty of capitalism. Nothing is forever. The big railroad barons smoking cigars and enjoying pheasant under glass in the dining car on the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe thought Henry Ford was a schmuck. Who'd want to ride around in that thing? Next thing you know, everyone's getting their kicks on Route 66:

"You'll see Amarillo

Gallup, New Mexico

Flagstaff, Arizona

Don't forget Winona

Kingman, Barstow, San Bernardino."

Ah, California. The Golden State! To a penniless immigrant named Arnold Schwarzenegger, it was a land of plenty. Now Arnold is an immigrant of plenty in a penniless land. What's the motto on the license plates? "Ah'll be back …for more of your money!" In California you don't have to be an orange to have your pips squeezed. The Terminator makes Gray Davis look like Calvin Coolidge. Care to terminate a government program, Governor? Hey, great idea! We'll hire 200 people to do an impact study on terminating the Department of Impact Study Regulation and get back to you in a decade. And when Gov. Girlyman has run out of state taxpayers to fleece for his ever-more-bloated bureaucracy, he'll go to Washington to plead for a federal bailout of Cantaffordya.

California! The state that symbolizes the American Dream! If you can make it there, you'll make it anywhere!

No, wait, that's New York. "This is the worst fiscal downturn since the Great Depression," announced New York Gov. Paterson. So what's he doing? Why, he's bringing in the biggest tax hike in New York history. If you can make it there, you'll be paying state tax on it, sales tax, municipal tax, a doubled beer tax, a tax on clothing, a tax on cab rides, an "iTunes tax" on downloads from the Internet, a tax on haircuts, 137 new tax hikes in all. Call Albany today and order your new package of tax forms, for just $199.99, plus 12 percent tax on tax forms and 4 percent tax-form application fee partially refundable upon payment of the 7.5 percent tax-filing tax. If you can make it there, you'll certainly have no difficulty making it in Tajikistan.

Hey, and who needs to make it therewhen you can just get appointed there? Gov. Paterson is said to be considering appointing Princess Caroline of Kennedy to Hillary Clinton's vacant Senate seat. After two and a third centuries of republican experiment, America has finally worked its way back to the House of Lords.

"Friends Say Kennedy Has Long Wanted Public Role," Anne Kornblut assured readers in an in-depth Washington Post tongue-bath. She hasn't "long wanted" it to the extent of, you know, running for dog catcher in Lackawanna and getting – what's the word? – "elected," but, if you have a spare Senate seat, she's graciously indicated that she'd be prepared to consider accepting it. As lady-in-waiting Anne Kornblut pointed out, Caroline is highly qualified, being "the author of several books." It's true! She's an experienced poetry editor. She edited "The Best-Loved Poems Of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis." Jackie Kennedy wrote poems? Of course! She wrote so many poems that some are better loved than others.

See the USA from your Chevrolet: An hereditary legislature, a media fawning its way into bankruptcy, its iconic coastal states driving out innovators and entrepreneurs, the arrival of the new Messiah heralded only by the leaden dirge of "We Three Kings Of Ol' Detroit Are/Seeking checks we traverse afar," and Route 66 looking ever more like a one-way dead-end street to Bailoutistan. Boy, I sure could use a poem by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis right now, even one of the lesser-loved ones.

"I feel like I lost my country," the Hudson Institute's Herbert London said the other day, wondering whatever happened to the land of opportunity and dynamism. But I'm more of an optimist. Maybe Princess Caroline will be appointed CEO of GM and all will be well. Or maybe Bed, Bath & Beyond will put wheels on the Swash 700 Elongated Biscuit Toilet Seat Bidet.

And on that cheery note let me wish you a very Hopey Changemas.

Brothers and Sisters in Christ carry no Denomination

God is raising the bar for believers. Unfortunately there is no denominational label that allows who makes it over the bar or not. Sheep and Goats, Light from darkness, Good from evil.

He is separating his people from those who are not his people. I have been writing about this. It's sloppy Christianity couched in terms of unity and ecumenicalism. The only true ecumenicalism is those who are his, who revere his name above the opinions of men, those who will cling to Jesus before the name that is on their church door.

As a fundamental full Bible Believing (Genesis to Maps) pentecostal (I don't know how else to define myself) I find myself in more spiritual unity with Conservative Catholics, Conservative Anglicans, Conservative (not confessional) Lutherans and of course many other very conservative groups in evangelical and pentecostal circles than I do with most so called evangelical and mainline churches. They have drifted somewhere I will not go.

The Conservative Bible Believing Christians from these groups seem to gravitate to the same voices I do. We are hearing God speak thru his servants. To hear a Catholic Priest confirm the word of the Lord from Bob Jones is a wonder to behold. It seems like we are all coming into a convergence that is a miracle. Maybe it is because we are so hated by the world and by compromising evangelicals.

Everyone seems to be a theologian now. Particularly the left. They seem to be ready to "Instruct" the rest of us miscreant Christians who actually READ and BELIEVE the Bible cover to cover. Even if it's amusing, for those of you who want to actually reach your culture, being like them is not the way to do it. Stand for something. Rise up. Wake up.

For evidence of this look at the comments from this post about Rick Warren:

In an interview tonight on Dateline NBC, Ann Curry asks Rick Warren if he is homophobic. He laughs a little obnoxiously in response, which seems to tick Ann off. She then asks him if he would change his position on homosexuality if science were to find it was "natural." He responded with this: "No, and the reason why is because we all have biological predispositions. I’m naturally incline to have sex with every beautiful woman I see. But that doesn’t mean its the right thing to do." As NB notes, check out Ann’s facials in immediate response to this answer.

Of course the "Theological Left" immediately resorts to the three Sunday school classes they ever attended at the insistence of their parents and the 4 posts on religion they ever read on the internet to give these kinds of "Insights" (my responses in RED):

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. That leaves out Rick Warren. Lust is a sin, so Rick Warren is a sinner.
YEP, so are you buddy. We all are. So, let the stone casting begin, read on.

The problem with this answer is that Warren seems to be confusing the issue of promiscuity, with one’s sexual orientation.

The Bible, of course, prohibits sexual promiscuity–for anybody. The law nowadays does not; whether or not this is a good thing, consenting adults in the United States are generally permitted to do whatever they like in bed. The exceptions to this resolve around things like prostitution and incest; neither of which are controversies at the moment, and neither of which have to do with sexual orientation.

However, Warren nonetheless has an “outlet” for his natural dispositions–while his faith prohibits him from playing the field; he can find a woman, marry her, and have a fulfilling relationship with her, including sexually.

His interpretation of his faith, however, denies that choice to gays and lesbians–for them, it seems, the only two permissible choices are either a) celibacy, or b) a straight marriage, which may well be unfulfilling to the gay person, and manifestly unfair to his/her spouse.

As a “biblical answer”, Ericka, many people will not wish to accept it–starting with those who are not Christians. The Qu’ran prohibits the consumption of pork and alcohol; do I care? No, as I am not a Muslim, I am not bound by its strictures. And I would object to any attempt to legislate sharia into our civil law.

Warren is, of course, entitled to his opinions; and I much prefer him to crass bigots and frauds like Pat Robertson or the late Jerry Falwell; but “the bible says so” is almost never a good argument in the sphere of secular politics.

The Bible says so, IS a good argument. And I imagine you developed an opinion about Falwell from having watched him all those many years....NOT. And, about NATURAL DISPOSITIONS. They do NOT include sodomy. That is imposed or learned. But that's just my opinion,,,,, and the BIBLE. IF you are going to instruct regarding theology, it might be good to read and understand the original document.

he’s entitled to choose to believe what he does. the problem comes in when he attempts to shove his lifestyle choice down everyone elses throats, and seeks to codify his lifestyle choices into law.

OH, I see, like the homosexual lobby doesn't SHOVE THEIR LIFESTYLE down my throat. Schools, cities, laws all falling in FAVOR of homosex. Stove calling kettle black.

“It’s a simple biblical answer that opponents cannot seem to accept.”

No, it’s not a simple Biblical answer. Picking out isolated verses about “sodomy” - what’s the Hebrew word for ’sodomy’? Greek? How were those words understood in millenia past? - is not a “simple answer.” If a couple odd lines from Leviticus and Paul are a simple answer, then I’m going to have to start keeping my wife and daughter in a tent in the backyard for a few days every month. Because that’s what the Bible says I have to do.

OK, Bibleboy. Why don't you actually study the word. There are a couple dozen strong and clear oppositions to the homosexual lifestyle. But that doesn't matter to you. You have no idea what you are talking about in your reference to the tent.

Rick Warren just does not get it. He is ignorant. A person who is born with an homosexual sexual orientation has just as much a right to marry their same sex partner as heterosexuals have the right to marry.

Sorry, getting IT is asking me to embrace, accept, celebrate and applaud your rebellious open SIN. Not going there and neither should Rick Warren. There is so much wrong with your premise I'll just leave it there.

Why is someone so ignorant re: sexual orientation going to be playing such a high profile role at the inauguration of the President that I fought so had to get elected?

I respect and honor President Elect Obama even more....

Oh, and one other thing, Am I supposed to agree with your assessment of his being ignorant? Nope didn't think so.

I’m not sure why Christians allow themselves to get tangled up in this stuff. We are simply never going to convince the non-believers of the world that restraint has it’s own virtue.

They see restraint only in pragmatic terms, how can there be a meaningful meeting of the minds on this?

This is most likely written by some inclusionist new evangelical that thinks to reach the world we have to be just like them. WOW. That's what this post is all about.

Warren suggests that gay people must “restrain themselves” far above and beyond what straight people must do. If he were denouncing bathhouse culture, I’d have little objection to what he has to say; there are valid reasons to dislike widespread promiscuity.

But he seems to think that the sexual choices available to gays, should be the same as the choices available to straights: Celibacy, or heterosexual marriage. The former is a big sacrifice for anyone to make–outside the priesthood, I don’t know of any adults who are celibate by choice (I know so-called “asexuals” exist; I’ve just never met one). The latter is not acceptable either–anymoreso than you would accept the suggestion that you should have a same-sex relationship. (I’m assuming, of course, that you are straight and have no desires for such).

If the objection is to sexual promiscuity, then gay marriage is an excellent antidote.

But with Warren, and others, the objection is to homosexuality itself.

YES! Sin is Sin, even if you codify it thru marriage. If you want to live in sin, open rebellion, in my face sin, and you want to take it to court to get a civil contract, that's what laws are for. If not, don't try to make what you do seem good or nice. It's not.

But what is sex for?


Or only for reproduction?

The dystopian sociatey portrayed George Orwell’s 1984 took the latter position, despite having no use for any sort of religion apart from worship of the State itself. The act of lovemaking was feuphemistically called “doing one’s duty to the State”, if my recollection is correct. Much of Catholic theology seems to have reached a similar conclusion–that sex is an innately evil act that is sometimes mitigated by the need of mankind to reproduce.

Other orthodox religious traditions, including other Abrahamic religions, take a different view; holding essentially that married couples can do whatever they want to in bed, for whatever reason they like. Both Hinduism and Islam, which often demand more from their adherents in the name of propriety than does Christianity, make no attempt to restrict the bedroom of the married couple. And even among Christians, as you note, the notion that sex is only for copulation is widely disputed.

In a framework where sex is only intended for copulation, then lots of things, including homosexual sex, can be denounced as evil. But outside that framework–the case becomes far weaker.

At any rate, it is one thing to preach, to advise, to encourage the faithful. It is another to make commands of others, especially when those others may not share the same moral code as you to begin with.

I agree that you do NOT share the same moral code. I won't preach to you. But, the writers and comments on this blog have preached to the believers in the church and sadly some of them have now bought the lie. They are called New Evangelicals. Exposure is needed. I'm doing my part.

Close but no actual cigar

I got this via email yesterday. It's close in it's analysis but not exactly right on. It's true in that we need to as the Church of Jesus meet people's needs temporally with financial management classes. The problem is they can get that kind of counsel anywhere. It isn't the unique factor that will keep them coming back. The unique factor for those who are not aware of the concept is the idea that if you are gonna get it you gotta get it here. Ken Vance. If we get it right we will encourage people to have hope and faith in the GOD who is there in a time where the question is God where are you in my pain.

So, while this is encouraging, and I respect A R Bernard, concentration on worldly answers isn't the unique factor. Jesus is. Anyway, I'm happy that Churches are reaching out to meet needs. Just make sure it's real needs.

Economic Downturn Boosts Church Growth

A study of past recession cycles found that the growth rate among evangelical churches dramatically increased while mainline Protestant churches declined.
Economic Downturn Boosts Church Growth
[12.17.08] A study last year by economics professor David Beckworth showed that during each recession cycle between 1968 and 2004, the rate of growth among evangelical churches grew by 50 percent, while mainline Protestant churches continued their steady decline. With the economy sinking, more churches are now verifying this trend and seeing remarkable growth The New York Times.

"It's a wonderful time, a great evangelistic opportunity for us," said A.R. Bernard, founder and senior pastor of the Christian Cultural Center in Brooklyn, New York to the Times. "When people are shaken to the core, it can open doors."

The key, many pastors say, is staying relevant with the average churchgoer's biggest concern today-which means offering more insight, guidance and hands-on assistance on money matters. To that extent, churches nationwide have begun financial management classes and opened food pantries, while pastors are delivering more sermons on what the economic downturn means.

"We need to leverage this moment, because every Christian revival in this country's history has come off a period of rampant greed and fear," said Seventh Day Adventist televangelist Don MacKintosh according to the The New York Times. "That's what we're in today-the time of fear and greed." --