Hidden Treasures

The Bible is much more than a book of religion.

Stealing Elections

America is capable of putting men on the moon.  We are capable of technological wonders; however,  in spite of obvious fraud in election cycle after election cycle down through the years, we have not yet figured out how to conduct an honest, fraud-proof election. Such elections are simple and work like clock work for honest citizens. Thank God for every honest citizen who votes and for every honest poll worker who watches carefully to protect us from fraud.

 

But like many other elections for as long as I can remember; elections in America are still being  stolen from honest, tax paying voters through all sorts of fraud, including allowing dead people to vote, allowing people to vote more than once, buying votes, dumping ballots in a river fifty-two years ago, thereby stealing an election,  allowing felons to vote and making it difficult and even impossible  for many of our military service men and women overseas to vote or have their votes counted.

 

In Habakkuk 2:6 the prophet pronounced woe on the one who  “increases that which is not his.”  Crooked politicians may buy their way into office; but their dishonesty is not hidden to God.  He sees it all and he will pour out his woes and His wrath  on all those who are involved in stealing elections.

 

In every election I have observed through the past fifty years, elections have often been very close, as dishonest politicians “have found just the votes they needed” to put their candidate into office, even if it means counting the dead or double counting votes, or destroying the ballots of the opposition.

 

I remember reading in my history book that when out nation was founded, the concern was “no taxation without representation”.   What is so evil in turning that around? “No representation without taxation.”   I would like to see the day when only law abiding, tax paying citizens who are educated enough to read a ballot and make intelligent decisions be permitted to vote.

 

Would you pray with me for God’s will to be accomplished in this election?

 

 

 

October 22, 2012 Posted by | America | Comments Off

War on Poverty

Three times the Scriptures record Jesus’ matter of fact statement concerning the poor. “The poor you have with you always.” Matthew 26:11, Mark 14:7, John 12:8.   No matter what we do as individuals or as a church or as a nation in our “war on poverty”,  there will always be a segment of human society that remains poor and  destitute.   What are we to do about it?  Wring our hands and feel guilty about the food we eat and the clothes we wear and the cars we drive and the homes in which we live?  I don’t think so.

As a pastor for fifty-five years I have dealt with the poor in every church I pastored. I have repeatedly answered the phone to listen to enraged scam artists shout at me to  try to make me feel guilty because I will not get in my car and drive downtown to meet them at a particular location and bring them $50.00 or more  to help them in their destitute situation.   Usually their stories are all somewhat similar.

Throughout my ministry in every church I have pastored, I have visited the poor in the communities, sharing the Gospel with them and inviting them to church. As I have visited them in their homes, often I had no place to sit for every chair was sticky with food or other kinds of filth.  I have been in homes in both Pennsylvania and New Mexico  where young mothers with their little children were living in absolute filth with human and animal feces and broken glass on the floor.  When our three children were small, often we picked up two or three of these school aged children in our car to take them to Sunday School and church with us. When we got home, we had to bathe our children to get rid of the fleas that had jumped into their hair.

I have talked to husbands and fathers of these children about getting a job and they have rejected seeking work for fear of losing their welfare checks.

Several years ago, a couple visited our church and after the service stood outside   the front door hitting up the church members for money. After rebuking them for begging,  I later that day visited this couple in their apartment and talked with them about their need.  I noted they were both chain smokers and had plenty of canned  sodas and junk food.   I took time to show them that they were wasting their limited money and talked to them about cleaning up and going to a particular establishment  that was presently hiring.  I shared the Gospel and prayed  with them and then gave them $20. from my pocket. That week they followed my advice and applied for jobs.  Both of them were hired.  They continued coming to church for a few weeks and then quit coming. Last I heard, they were both still working at that job.  Nevertheless, I had done what I could for them, both spiritually and materially.

We live in a strongly divided nation of Democrats and Republicans with Libertarians scattered in the mix.  The name Democrat is taken from the fact we are a democracy, that is, the rule of the people.   The name Republican comes from the fact that we are constitutionally a republic, ruled by laws.  At this crucial stage in our nation’s history, the choice before us at the polls is the question do we want mob rule by the people?  We’ve seen that recently in the mobs who riot in the streets in opposition to business and Wall Street and also in the rioting in Europe  The ultimate question before us is, Do we want the rule of the people, which is ultimately mob rule  and  the despotic rule of Socialism or do we desire to be the Republic under the rule of law, as defined in our Constitution?

The question at the polls is not who has the most concern and who  will do the most for the poor and needy. Both parties have that concern.  The question for us is do we want to go down the road of mob rule and fiscal irresponsibility as we continue to go trillions of dollars deeper into debt such as we have never known in the history of our Republic. With that debt we are seeing the devaluation of our dollar such as we have never seen before.  With the devaluation of our dollar has come inflation, financial hardship and further poverty on our aged and on all who live on a fixed income.  The question for me is a “no brainer”.

We are a sin-sick nation.  A large segment of our society wants to attempt to remove God from our national life.  Our political direction and our only hope for the future lies in the hands of Christians.  II Chronicles 7:14 applied not only to Israel, but it applies to God’s people today. “If My people which are called by My name shall humble themselves and pray, and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from Heaven and will forgive their sins and will heal their land.”  Our decision at the polls will determine the America we leave to our children and to our grand children  for generations to come.

August 6, 2012 Posted by | America | Comments Off

Crumbling Foundations

IF THE FOUNDATIONS BE DESTROYED

 

( A message I preached July 3, 2011 shortly before I retired in November)

 

Satan is shaking America in a series of moral earthquakes, which result in economic earthquakes, including debt, devaluation of our currency, depression and despair.   These continue to grow in ever-increasing intensity on the moral Richter scale, as  evidenced by the  increasing rebellion towards God and His  Word  and the resulting immorality and violence over the past century.

Psalm 11:3 warns of the destruction of any nation whose moral foundations are destroyed. The very foundations of America  are crumbling. Looking at things from our earthly perspective, all seems hopeless.

As America has become more immoral and violent have you shared the desire of the Psalmist to flee from all the sin and turmoil and live with your family alone on some desert island or in some mountain sanctuary far from trouble, where all is rosy and peaceful?  I have and  it wouldn’t surprise me if at times most of us have had that desire.

Note the importance of foundations. Foundations are basic and essential. Without solid foundations; homes  and  institutions are at risk.

Consider some institutions which  are fragile and crumbling without sound foundations.

 

THE HOME AND FAMILY.

 

 When  buying a house, if we are wise we are  especially concerned  about  the foundations.

 

Square feet, sturdy quality construction, ample insulation,  quality doors and windows, heating and air conditioning, dependable wiring and plumbing, an intriguing. roomy floor plan, lot, location and price. All these things matter. But nothing matters if the foundation is not solid and firm.

So it is in every area of life.    Family is the basic building block of society; not the government, school nor church, but the home. God created a home first in the  Garden of Eden. The home needs a solid rock foundation to make it  through the difficulties of life.

According to I Corinthians 3:11 Christ is the solid foundation. Homes built on Christ give stability; not only to the home, but  to the  institutions of school and government.  Homes built on Christ, the solid Rock,  stand the storms of life, according to Matthew  7:24-27. Such marriages and homes are built on Biblical principles as taught in  Ephesians 5.

Over the past century we have increasingly seen the termites of Liberalism and Socialism eating away at the foundations of our homes,  schools and the institution of  government.

Make no mistake about it. We are gradually becoming  a socialistic society as these enemies of God and the Bible use public education, the media and  Hollywood  entertainment to gain control of our minds.

They accomplish this by fomenting racial strife and class warfare between the rich and  the poor.

They encourage us to become more dependent on government for all our needs.

They encourage our allegiance to world government and the new world order through  the United Nations while de-emphasizing our national sovereignty.

These termites of Socialism, anti-God and  anti-Bible philosophies  eat away at the foundations of home  and families  by promoting same-sex  marriages and undermining family loyalty.

 

 

SINCE SCHOOLS ARE MADE UP OF FAMILIES, IT FOLLOWS THAT

IF FAMILIES LACK SOLID SPIRITUAL FOUNDATION,  SCHOOLS ALSO LACK SPIRITUAL FOUNDATION.

 

Most of us over age 60 remember the Lord’s prayer and Bible reading in public schools.  That’s what I remember in the elementary schools  when  the worst crime was shooting a spit wad.

Prayer, Bible and corporal punishment have been thrown out leaving young people with no moral compass in the school nor in the home.

The Bible has been replaced by the crumbling foundation of evolutionary  theory of beginnings.

A study of our nation’s history and of how the Pilgrims came to this land to further the cause of Christ and  protect themselves from an oppressive  State Church have been deleted from history books in many public schools.

Students know more about  United Nations  and the Muslim religion and sexual perversion than they do about Founding Fathers and  our founding documents such as The Mayflower Compact, our Constitution and  Declaration  of Independence.

We live in a godless society that has no room for God nor  for Biblical moral  standards.  Children have no respect nor fear of authority.  Furthermore, socialism influences a child’s distrust of  his parents and teaches  that government knows what is best for children,

These socialists thumb their noses at parents by giving immoral, perverted sex education  in public schools, by dealing with teen pregnancies and by promoting and providing abortions without parental notification nor consent.

There is  a declining  percentage of Christian teachers in public schools, and an increasingnumber of teachers who are  evil role models and fill our  young people’s minds with Socialistic mush and immorality.  A growing number of  high school graduates today are not prepared for college nor for the work force. They lack a foundation in the  basics. When one learns how to live, he is prepared to learn how to make a living.

Rampant immorality and crime are  on increase. Many schools have become  war zones.  Homo-sexual lifestyle, as well as promiscuous sex are accepted norms of  society.

 

OUR GOVERNMENT ALSO LACKS A MORAL FOUNDATION

 

It  follows that if our homes and schools lack moral foundation, our government also lacks a moral foundation.  Though founded on the Bible;  now it has been barred from national life  and government has become  hostile tothe Bible and to Christianity as they fight toremove all Christian symbols from public places and from our currency.

 

Criminals, including murderers, rapists and pedophiles walk free in society and we are seeing an  increased rash of horrible crimes against children.   But that doesn’t matter, for Liberals are more concerned for  criminal’s rights than for victim’s rights.  That includes our treatment of captured terrorists.

 

Liberalism has taken over our courts, and much of Congress.  Over the past sixty years our courts have over-stepped their bounds of  interpreting the law, to legislating it.  That is the responsibility of the legislative branch of government and the legislators are responsible to the electorate.  The time may come when the our nation’s Constitution could be ruled unconstitutional. How Christians need to be praying for God-fearing justices in our local  and regional courts and in the Supreme Court.

 

 

HOW DID THESE FOUNDATIONS DISAPPEAR?

 

 

Europe, the seed bed  of the Protestant Reformation 500 years  ago, later became the seed bed of Liberalism and Neo Orthodoxy  as it spread  to  America  and infected the colleges, seminaries and ultimately the pulpits of our land.

With the foundations of the Bible  eroded, including the Genesis account of Creation and the Fall and of sin and the universal Flood in Noah’s day, (all facts Jesus confirmed in His New Testament teachings)  there followed the denial of the deity of  Christ and our need of His blood atonement and the preaching and reception of the Social Gospel

The God-fearing foundations laid by  the  founders of our republic were gradually removed and  our homes, schools and society in  general began crumbling all  around us.

Even though on the surface, we have still kept a semblance of our former glory in our public life:

1. Prayers in times of national crisis.

2. Chaplains in our halls of Congress and in the military.

3. “In God we trust” on our currency.

We are no longer a Christian nation rooted  in God’s Word and in Christian values.

 

 

WHAT CAN BE DONE ABOUT IT?  

 

 

Please,  turn to Psalm 11.

 

The wicked hate the righteous and want to destroy us.  Psalm 11:2

 

As long as the foundations are destroyed, there is nothing the righteous can do.  11:3

Our only hope is in God who sees what is going on.  Psalm 11:4

He is trying our faith as we live in the midst of a godless nation. Psalm 11:5   as Enoch walked with God in the wicked days before the flood.

The wicked are about to be judged. Ps. 11:5-6   “now will I arise.”

He loves us and His eyes are on us.  11:7

It is the responsibility of every new generationto rebuild foundations of righteousness beginning  in our homes.

Marry only  godly mates &  build Christian homes

Establish Bible preaching churches.

Spread the Gospel  throughout the land and throughout the world.

 

In spite of all the facade of religion in America, it is my growing conviction that America  is one of the neediest mission fields in the world today.  We have become a   heathen nation.

Over a period of years,  (if the Lord tarries) we can once again lay a  Biblical foundation  in our nation.

From our Christian homes and schools must come the future preachers,teachers and  leaders of government.

If our eyes are on the Lord and our trust is in Him,  we need not be depressed and long to flee to the  mountains or to the wilderness or to some desert island to escape the contamination of this socialistic, sinful society?  Ps. 11:1

Our job is to be salt and light in a corrupt society. Matthew 5:11-16

Philippians 2:12-16

We must  get right with God and pray for God to heal our land.  II Chronicles 7:14

Genuine Christians have been doing this for years

For 55 years as a pastor, this has been  my primary concerns and prayer.

Until the foundation of the Bible  is once again laid, in our homes,  schools, churches and nation;  all our efforts  to reduce  teen  pregnancies, abortion,  homo-sexual activity, drunkenness, drugs and all the other problems of  our society are  in vain.

 

The Sands of Time Are Sinking, is a hymn written by Anna Ross Cousin

 

The sands of time are sinking,

The dawn of Heaven breaks,

The summer morn I sighed for,

The fair sweet morn awakes.

Dark, dark hath been the midnight,

But Dayspring is at hand.

And glory, glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s Land.

-

Oh, Christ, He is the fountain,

The deep sweet well of  love!

The streams on earth I’ve tasted,

More deep I’ll drink above.

There to an ocean fullness,

His mercy doth expand,

And glory, glory dwelleth in Immanuel’s Land.

-

Oh, I am my Beloved’s,

And my Beloved’s mine!

He brings a poor vile sinner

Into His house of wine.

I stand upon His merit;

I know no other stand,

Not e’en where glory dwelleth

In Immanuel’s land.

-

The Bride eyes not her garment,

But her dear Bridegroom’s face.

I will not gaze at glory,

But on my King of Grace.

Not at the crown He giveth,

But on His pierced hand,

The Lamb in all His glory,

Of Immanuel’s land.

Here is an applicable benediction from Psalm 67:1-2 for  American Christians today.

God be merciful unto us and  bless us and cause His face to shine upon us, that Thy way may be known upon earth, and Thy saving health among all nations.  Let the people praise Thee, O God; let all the people praise Thee. Then shall the earth yield her increase; and God, even our own God shall bless us.  God shall bless us, and all the ends of the earth shall fear Him.

May 19, 2012 Posted by | America | Comments Off

Unity and Beauty

 

Unity and Beauty of the Declaration and the Constitution

An Interview with Larry P. Arnn  

LARRY P. ARNN, the twelfth president of Hillsdale College, received his B.A. from Arkansas State University and his M.A. and Ph.D. in government from the Claremont Graduate School. From 1977 to 1980, he also studied at the London School of Economics and at Worcester College, Oxford University, where he served as director of research for Martin Gilbert, the official biographer of Winston Churchill. From 1985 until his appointment as president of Hillsdale College in 2000, he was president of the Claremont Institute for the Study of Statesmanship and Political Philosophy. In 1996, he was the founding chairman of the California Civil Rights Initiative, the voter-approved ballot initiative that prohibited racial preferences in state employment, education, and contracting. He is the author of Liberty and Learning: The Evolution of American Education and The Founders’ Key: The Divine and Natural Connection Between the Declaration and the Constitution and What We Risk By Losing It (forthcoming February 2012).

The following is adapted from an interview by Peter Robinson of the Hoover Institution for his show “Uncommon Knowledge.” The interview took place on October 3, 2011, at Hillsdale College, and it can be viewed in full at hoover.org/multimedia/uncommon-knowledge/96901.

 

 

Peter Robinson: Larry, I am quoting from you: “You can read the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution in a few minutes. They are simple. They are beautiful. They can be understood and retained.” Place the documents in their historical context. Why did they matter?

 

Larry P. Arnn: There are three incredible things to keep in mind about the Declaration. First, there had never been anything like it in history. It was believed widely that the only way to have political stability was to have some family appointed to rule. King George III went by the title “Majesty.” He was a nice and humble man compared to other kings; but still, when his son wanted to marry a noble of lower station, he was told he mustn’t do that, no matter what his heart said. That was the known world at the time of the American Founding.

 

Second, look at the end of the Declaration. Its signers were being hunted by British troops. General Gage had an order to find and detain them as traitors. And here they were putting their names on a revolutionary document and sending it to the King. Its last sentence reads: “And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.” That is how people talk on a battlefield when they are ready to die for each other.

 

The third thing about the Declaration is even more extraordinary in light of the first two: It opens by speaking of universal principles. It does not portray the Founding era as unique—“When in the Course of human events” means any time—or portray the Founding generation as special or grand—“it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another” means any people. The Declaration is thus an act of obedience—an act of obedience to a law that persists beyond the English law and beyond any law that the Founders themselves might make. It is an act of obedience to the “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God,” and to certain self-evident principles—above all the principle “that all men are created equal” with “certain unalienable Rights.”

 

For the signers to be placing their lives at risk, and to be doing so while overturning a way of organizing society that had dominated for two thousand years, and yet for them to begin the Declaration in such a humble way, is very grand.

 

As for the Constitution, first, it is important to realize that some of the most influential modern historians suggest that it represents a break with the Declaration—that it represents a sort of second founding. If this were true, it would mean that the Founders changed their minds about the principles in the Declaration, and that in following their example we could change our minds as well. But in fact it is not true that the Constitution broke with the Declaration. It is false on its face.

 

The Constitution contains three fundamental arrangements: representation, which is the direct or indirect basis of the three branches of government described in the first three articles of the Constitution; separation of powers, as embodied in those three branches; and limited government, which is obvious in the Constitution’s doctrine of enumerated powers—there is a list of things that Congress can do in Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution, and the things that are not listed it may not do. And all three of these fundamental arrangements, far from representing a break with the Declaration, are commanded by it.

 

Look at the lengthy middle section of the Declaration, made up of the list of charges against the King. The King has attempted to force the people to “relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.” He has “dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.” He has “refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.” So he has violated the idea and arrangement of representation.

 

What about separation of powers? As seen in the charges above, and in the charge that he would call together legislatures “at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant…for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures,” the King was violating the separation of the executive and legislative powers. And in “[making] judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries,” he was violating the separation between the executive and judicial powers.

 

Similarly, he violated the idea of limited government by sending “swarms of Officers to harrass [the] people, and eat out their substance,” by importing “large Armies of foreign Mercenaries,” by “imposing Taxes on [the people] without [their] Consent,” and in several other ways listed.

 

By violating these arrangements—which would become the three key elements of the Constitution—the King was violating the principles of the Declaration. This is what justified the American Revolution. And the point of this for our time is that in thinking about the American Founding, we should think about the Declaration and the Constitution together. If the principles and argument of the Declaration are true, the arrangements and argument of the Constitution are true, and vice versa.

 

PR: I quote you again: “Woodrow Wilson and the founders of modern liberalism call these doctrines of limited government that appear in the Declaration and the Constitution obsolete. They argue that we now live in the age of progress and that government must be an engine of that progress.”

 

Wilson was dealing with conditions that the Founders could scarcely have imagined: industrialization, dense urban populations, enormous waves of immigration. So what did he get wrong?

 

LPA: The first thing he got wrong was looking back on earlier America as a simple age. There was nothing simple about it. The Founders had to fight a war against the largest force on earth. They had to figure out how to found a government based on a set of principles that had never formed the basis of a government. The original Congress was called the Continental Congress, although no one would understand the extent of the continent until Lewis and Clark reported to President Jefferson in 1806. They had to figure out a way for the first free government in history to grow across that continent. These things took vast acts of imagination. And this is not even to mention the crisis of slavery and the Civil War. So the idea that the complications of the late 19th century were something new, or were greater by some order of magnitude, is bunkum.

 

The second mistake Wilson makes is fundamental, and goes to the core of the American idea. Wilson is opposed to the structure imposed on the government by the Constitution—for instance, the separation of powers—because it impedes what he calls progress. But what idea was behind that structure? James Madison writes in Federalist 51:

 

[W]hat is government itself but the greatest of all reflections on human nature? If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary.

 

 

In other words, human nature is such that human beings need to be governed. We need government if we are not to descend into anarchy. But since human beings will make up the government, government itself must be limited or it will become tyrannical. Just as we outside the government require to be governed, those inside the government require to be governed. And that has to be strictly arranged because those inside the government need, and they will have, a lot of power.

 

Against this way of thinking, Wilson argued that progress and evolution had brought human beings to a place and time where we didn’t have to worry about limited government. He rejected what the Founders identified as a fixed or unchanging human nature, and thought we should be governed by an elite class of people who are not subject to political forces or constitutional checks and balances—a class of people such as we find in our modern bureaucracy. This form of government would operate above politics, acting impartially in accordance with reason.

 

Now, it’s pretty easy for us today to judge whether Wilson or the Founders were right about this. Look at our government today. Is the bureaucracy politically impartial? Is it efficient and rational, as if staffed by angels? Or is it politically motivated and massively self-interested?

 

PR: You’ve spoken about restoring a rounded and rigorous sense of constitutional government, and you have put forward, in a tentative way, four ideas or “pillars” to suggest how to begin doing that. The first pillar is this: “Protecting the equal and inalienable rights of individuals is government’s primary responsibility.”

 

Here’s a problem though: Something like 47 percent of Americans now pay no federal income tax, and we hear a great deal about the tipping point—the point at which more people become dependent on the federal government than pay into it. What is it within the Constitution, or within a revived constitutional government, that prevents this majority from simply voting itself the property of the minority?

 

LPA: Well, the first thing is the majority’s larger self-interest rightly understood. Is that practice working out in Greece right now? As Margaret Thatcher used to say, pretty soon you run out of other people’s money.

 

I myself am not particularly gloomy about the tipping point you mention. I do understand that there will come a time, if we do not repair our problems, when we will not be able to repair them. But given that so many people today clearly think the government is out of hand and does not represent them anymore, I think we won’t pass that tipping point. I’ve had the privilege of studying Winston Churchill for a long time, and his great belief—and I think this should be the model for us today—was to make the great political questions clearer to the people and then to have faith in them. I am optimistic partly because the explanations of the great political questions given to Americans have not been very good or very clear since Reagan. What if we were to get better in explaining them? That is our hope, I think.

 

PR: Okay, pillar two, still quoting you: “Economic liberty is inversely proportional to government intrusion in the lives of citizens. We must liberate the American people to work, to save, and to invest.”

 

But here’s a constitutional question that Milton Friedman noticed and that James Buchanan won a Nobel Prize for writing about: The benefits of federal spending accrue to small groups who have incentives to organize and agitate for more and more spending, whereas the costs of federal spending are diffused across the whole population, so that no one has a counterbalancing incentive to organize and agitate against spending. Therefore, you get this ratchet that always leads in the direction of greater spending. Did the Constitution not foresee this problem?

 

LPA: Two points. The first is that we should not blame the Constitution. It is the longest surviving and greatest constitution in human history, and the effort by Progressives to overturn it is now more than 100 years old. It is not a failure of the Constitution, but the success of the political rebellion against it—which has been systematic and going on for a very long time—that brings us to where we are today.

 

Second, public choice theory as you describe it is a true and sufficient explanation of things as far as it goes. But is there not more to it today? Milton Friedman used to say that subsidies to farmers are going to grow and subsidies to old people are going to decline. Why? Because there are so many old people that for us to give them $100 will cost us $175, whereas there are so few farmers that for us to give them $100,000 will cost us only $10. That is public choice theory in a nutshell. But isn’t the fact now that a growing number of people know we are broke? And that they are going to have to pay more and more to sustain the voracious appetite of the bureaucratic state?

 

I believe there is an abiding or overarching sense of fairness that touches a majority of the American people. If there is, constitutionalism will look more attractive than it used to look. I think that if Americans are provided a good and clear explanation of the choices before them, they will be willing to begin moving back toward constitutional government.

 

PR: On to pillar three: “To accomplish its primary duty of protecting individual liberty, the government must uphold national security.” That seems perfectly straightforward. You also write: “Promotion of democracy and defense of innocents abroad should be undertaken only in keeping with the national interest.”

 

Where do you place your views on the spectrum between Ron Paul and George W. Bush?

 

LPA: I side with Thomas Jefferson when he said, “We are the friends of liberty everywhere, custodians only of our own.” Foreign affairs are prudential matters, and prudential matters are not subject to narrow rules laid out in advance. But that practical statement by Jefferson is a brilliant guide.

 

Also, we have to remember that it is a very dangerous world. Churchill believed that one of the effects of technology is to make us both wealthier and more powerful. And both wealth and power can turn to destruction. The great wars of modernity have been much larger in scale than ancient wars, and equal in intensity. Churchill believed that liberal society contains in this respect and others seeds of its own destruction. It is the work of statesmen to find the cheapest possible way to defend their countries without consuming all the resources of those countries.

 

I pray that Iraq is going to be a free country, and I think there is a chance of it, and I give George W. Bush credit for that. But I have been skeptical, and it is a more complicated question than many seem to understand. A senior person in the White House said to me one time, “Don’t you think the Iraqis want to be free?” And I said: “Sure they do. But have you read The Federalist Papers? Do you divine from its arguments that wanting to be free is sufficient?” As it turns out, it is hard to obtain civil and religious liberty, and it is hard to maintain it.

 

But do I think we did a good thing imposing a new constitution on Japan after World War II? Sure I do. Japan did a terrible thing to us, we conquered it, and there was an opportunity in that. It would have been a false economy not to seize that opportunity. Does that mean that in every country where there is a threat to us, we won’t be perfectly safe until they are democratic? Maybe. But even so, is trying to make them democratic practicable and the most practical way to serve our security? Probably not. Again, these are matters of prudence.

 

PR: Pillar four: “The restoration of a high standard of public morality is essential to the revival of constitutionalism.” What is your distinction between public morality and morality per se?

 

LPA: Public morality means laws about morality. Murder is a moral harm, and we have laws against it. Public morality also includes laws supporting the family. Human beings were made for the family, and we should uphold that. It is hard to raise kids right, and it takes a long time. Laws should support that effort, not undermine it. This extends to reducing the size of government so that it does not become a burden on families. The Gross Domestic Product of the United States is about $15 trillion, and state, local and federal spending is about $6.7 trillion. So we are $800 billion away from taking half of GDP out of the private sector, and the new health care bureaucracy is coming. Once it comes, if it does, government will be larger than society.

 

The principles of our country stem from the laws of nature and nature’s God. This word “nature” is full of rich meaning. It comes from the Latin word for birth, so of course the nature of man, and natural rights, must be understood to include the process of begetting and growth by which human beings come to be. This process takes longer, and is more demanding and expensive, than for any or nearly any other creatures. If families do not raise children, then the government will. What then becomes of limited government?

 

PR: And as a constitutional point, do things that undermine public morality and degrade people include the garbage language in some pop songs, or the proliferation of pornography on the Internet?

 

LPA: Yes. At this college, students are supposed to be civil, and we don’t have many problems because they subscribe to that before they come. Having an honor code makes for good order and operation. Teachers, students, and staff come together and make a common effort. A well-functioning college is a microcosm of constitutional rule, and shows what can be achieved in a country when everyone is governing himself.

 

It is important for all of us to understand that free people are not governed by rules. Here at Hillsdale we are governed by goals, and then the rules are very broad. Tell the truth, be straight, do not cheat, do not be foul, take care of other people. Those are rules. But the federal rules pertaining to colleges number now more than 500 pages. We at Hillsdale do not live under these rules because we do not take federal money. But I asked our lawyer once to send me the list to read anyway, and he said I wouldn’t be able to read it. I replied that even though I am not a lawyer, I am a pretty smart guy, maybe I can. No, even he can’t read it, he replied, it is incomprehensible.

 

Ask yourself, who gets powerful under a system like that? The answer is, whoever has the power to interpret the rules. They can do whatever they want.

 

This is the point I hope every American will come to understand—that in our country, we are supposed to have a very powerful government in order for it to do what it must, but also a government of a far different character than the kind we have today. The distinction between constitutional government and bureaucratic government is fundamental.

 

PR: How can we get there from here? I am quoting you once again: “There is only one way to return to living under the principles of the Declaration of Independence and the institutions of the Constitution. We must come to love these things again.” How?

 

LPA: First, you have to know about them. I am like the hammer who looks at everything as if it were a nail. Everything is a teaching opportunity. Teaching is, of course, what we do here at Hillsdale. But the great presidents are teachers as well. It is a generous and fine thing to do, to labor to make important things clear to people—which of course you cannot do unless you are able to make them clearer than if you are just talking to yourself. That is why Abraham Lincoln’s speeches are beautiful. You cannot read many of them unless you read them carefully. An example is Lincoln’s Peoria address on the history of slavery. He labored for months putting it together, and Americans could learn how slavery moved in our country because he laid it out. And then at the end of the speech he combined that history with a lovely explanation of why the principles of our country are capable of reaching and protecting every human being, and ennobling them, because they get to participate in rule. To know that about the principles of our country is to love them. I see that happen all the time in the classroom. So what we need is for people to know and understand our country’s principles. Love will follow.


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December 17, 2011 Posted by | America | Comments Off

How Long, America?

About the time our original thirteen states adopted their new constitution in 1787, Alexander Tyler, a  Scottish history professor at the University of Edinburgh, had this to say about the fall of the AthenianRepublic some 2,000 years earlier:

A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury.

From that moment on, the majority always vote for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship.

The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations from the beginning of history, has been about 200 years During those 200 years, those nations always progressed through the following sequence:

1. From bondage to spiritual faith;

2. From spiritual faith to great courage;

3. From courage to liberty;
4. From liberty to abundance;

5. From abundance to complacency;

6. From complacency to apathy;

7. From apathy to dependence;

8. From dependence back into bondage”

The United States is now somewhere between the ‘complacency and apathy’ phase of Professor Tyler’s definition of democracy, with some forty percent of the nation’s population already having reached the ‘governmental dependency’ phase. As a few million more new voters seeking government welfare join us at the polls, we may live to see the collapse of our nation in several more years.

The ONLY hope for America is found in II Chronicles 7:12-14  The Lord appeared to King Solomon one night and said, “If I shut up Heaven and there be no rain, or if I command the beasts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among My people,   If My people which are called by My Name shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, THEN will I hear from Heaven and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

 

July 7, 2011 Posted by | America | Comments Off

Despising the Pleasant Land

Psalm 105 describes Israel’s deliverance from Egyptian captivity and God’s leading them into their promised land of Canaan.

Psalm 106 reminds us how Israel so soon forgot God and despised all He had done for them.

As Israel was led by God to their promised land, so  the Pilgrims and pioneers were led by God to the promised land of America;  and as Israel forgot and forsook God, so America over the years has followed Israel in despising the God who led, protected and provided for them.

We can say of Americans what the Psalmist said of Israel in Psalm 106. “They forgot God”  vs 21  “They despised the pleasant land.” Vs 24, They murmured in their tents and harkened not to the voice of God.” Vs 25.

AMERICA‘S GODLY HERITAGE

 

The Mayflower Compact

 

The Pilgrims came to America on the sailing ship, the Mayflower in 1620, just about 400 years ago.  Let by Governor Bradford aboard the Mayflower before landing at Plymouth Rock in what became Massachusetts,  he wrote The Mayflower Compact, a plan for the first self-determining self government ever put forth in America.  Here it is, minus some old English words and phrases. 

“In the name of God, Amen.”

We whose names are underwritten, loyal subjects of our dread sovereign, Lord King James by the grace of God of Great Britain, France and Ireland, Defender of The Faith, and in honor of our King and country, we have undertaken this voyage to plant the first colony in the northern parts of Virginia, (the winds had blown them north to Cape Cod) do by this document solemnly and mutually in the presence of God and one another, covenant and combine ourselves into a civic body politic for our better ordering and preservation and furtherance of the ends foresaid, and by virtue of this document enact, constitute, and frame such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions and offices, from time to time as shall be thought right for the general good of the colony, unto which we promise all due submissions and  obedience.

“In witness we have hereunder subscribed our names at Cape Cod, the 11th of November in the 18th year of the reign of Sovereign Lord, King James,  1620 AD. “

The United States Constitution

 

Let’s move ahead one hundred and fifty years later to 1770.  When the Continental Congress met to frame the Constitution of the United States of America, they had the difficult task of forming a single nation from the thirteen colonies: each with their own laws, their own money and with their own taxes and import duties.  They argued and worked for long weeks, seeking some plan on which they could agree.

At last Benjamin Franklin stood up, we are told and said, “I have lived sirs, a long time: and the longer I live the more convincing proofs I see of the truth that God governs in the affairs of men.

“If a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid?

“We have been assured, sirs, in the Sacred Writings,  that except the Lord build the House, they labor in vain that build it”

“I firmly believe this and I also believe that without His concurring aid, we shall succeed in this political building no better than the builders of The Tower of Babel.”

The delegates of the Continental Congress agreed and stopped for prayer. The difficulty seemed soon to dissolve and out of that prayer meeting grew the great historic Constitution of the United States, probably the most important historical document ever written.  So the colonies became one nation under God. 

It would be foolish and devilish to contend that America was not founded with the help of God, or that our founders did not claim that help.

The Senator from Massachusetts

 

Daniel Webster, a US Senator from Massachusetts 200 years ago said about our founding as a nation, “Our ancestors established their system of government on morality and religious sentiment.

‘Moral habits, they believed, cannot safely be trusted on any other foundation than religious principle, nor can any government be secure which is not supported by moral habits. Living under the heavenly light of Revelation (the Bible) they hoped to find all the social disposition and the duties which men owe each other and to society, enforced and performed. Whatever makes good Christians, makes them good citizens.”

Webster continued, “Finally, let us not forget the religious character of our origin.  Our Fathers were brought hither by their high veneration of the Christian religion. They journeyed by its light and labored in its hope. They sought to incorporate its principles with the elements of their society and to diffuse its influence through all their institutions, civic, politic, or literary.

“Let us cherish these sentiments and extend their influence still more widely; in the full conviction this it the happiest society which partakes in the highest degree in the mild and peaceful spirit of Christianity.”

These were the words from the senator from Massachusetts 150 years ago.

America was born a God-fearing nation.

And so today we have our God honoring Declaration of Independence, our Constitution, our national songs, such as “God Bless America”,  “The Star Spangled Banner”  Listen to the third stanza, 

“O thus be it ever when free men shall stand between their loved homes and war’s desolation.  Blest with victory and peace May the Heaven’s rescued land praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation! Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,  And this be our motto, “In God is our trust.” And the star spangled banner in triumph shall wave, O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.”

In our beloved national song, “O Beautiful for Spacious Skies”, God is mentioned in all four stanzas, “God shed His grace on Thee”.  “God mend thine every flaw”,  “May God thy gold refine”,  and again, “God shed His grace on thee.”

In another beloved national song, “My Country, Tis of Thee”  we address this hymn of praise to God, the source of our nation and our freedoms. Listen to the last stanza. “Our Father’s God, to Thee, Author of liberty, to Thee we sing, Long may our land be bright, with freedom’s holy light; Protect us by Thy might, Great God, our King!”

I wonder how long it will be before the liberals will ban these hymns of praise to God from public use.  Perhaps it has already happened in some places.

In addition to our founding documents and our national hymns of praise to God, nearly all our national buildings and monuments  are filled with inscriptions of Holy Scripture engraved in stone.  Not only in our capitol, but also in the Washington Monument, the Jefferson Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, in Liberty Hall in Philadelphia, in the Gettysburg battle field, and so many other places.

Our Bill of Rights forbids Congress from establishing a state religion and also protects us and guarantees that no one can prohibit anyone from the free exercise of their religion.

Back in 1836  a minister, Rev. McGuffey, wrote a set of readers for six grade levels from first through sixth grade. All these readers are filled with Bible stories and Bible verses to be memorized, teaching moral values to the children.  For decades following, America’s boys and girls grew up learning to read and learning these Scriptural values in America’s schools.

The dumbing down of America

With the banning of such literature and with the banning of the Bible from the public class room has come increased crime and immorality in our schools and in our nation and the dumbing down of America.

Listen to our late night television comedians go out on the streets and ask the general public simple questions concerning our nations history.  Recently one of them asked several  the meaning of July 4.  Most young people  who were asked had no idea that it commemorated  America’s freedom  from England.   At the same time, these young people have been taught in school, even in the elementary grades how to use condoms.  Our  Nanny State now attempts to protect children from the influence of their own parents.

I thank God that my wife and I back in the early 70′s became aware of the academic and moral bankruptcy of the public schools and began home schooling our children until we could establish a Christian school in our church.

Nearly all of our great statesmen, presidents, and military leaders have in their speeches spoken of their dependence on God and asked for the prayers of God’s people.  Every November our President honors God by calling on the nation to give Him thanks for His blessings on us.

Until recent years when we shut God out of our schools and out of our lives, America was a blessed nation from our founding. We believed and experienced the truth of Psalm 33:12 “Blessed in the nation whose God is The Lord and the people whom He has chosen for His own inheritance.”  We Americans knew the God of the Bible was our God and we were His people.

As a result of that relationship with God, we were the most blessed nation on the face of the earth. We enjoyed freedom like no other nation. We were blessed materially beyond measure.

America in the Balance

Since the 60′s our nation has been swinging in the balance between liberalism’s rejection of the Bible and conservatism’s acceptance and dependence on the Bible and its moral values.  Unless we turn to a strong acceptance and reliance on the Bible, we will go the way of all nations that have forgotten and forsaken God and drown in the muck of depravity and poverty.

Many, perhaps most Americans today, have fallen for the devilish philosophy that the government owes us  a living and must meet all our needs from the cradle to the grave.

The Liberal’s 23rd Psalm

For the typical liberal-educated American the 23rd Psalm reads as follows.

The government is my shepherd, I shall not want.

It leads me by the still waters of complacency.

When I have financial needs it bails me out.

It leads me in the path of total government dependence.

In old age it gives me Social Security.

Yea though I walk through sickness and trouble, I will fear no evil for Medicare and Medicaid are there for me.

It prepares a table before me with Food stamps

and other government subsidies.

It doesn’t matter if there is fraud and waste, as long as I get my share.

Surely mounting taxes and increasing government controls will be with me all the days of my life and when I am gone, my children and grand children will be saddled with a mounting national debt for generations to come.

But who cares?

WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT THIS DEPRESSING STATE OF AFFAIRS?

Christian friend,  America’s future is in our hands as Christians. As goes the church so goes the nation. I Peter 4:17 warns us, “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the House of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the Gospel of God?”

Remember, human government is God’s provision to protect citizens and provide for them a safe and quiet peaceful atmosphere of freedom  so we can each live our lives in pursuit of God’s will which leads to happiness and success.

According to Romans 13:1-7, I Timothy 2:1-4  and I Peter 2:13-17 we are to honor and pray for our leaders, even if we don’t agree with them.

We are to pay our taxes, fair or unfair.

We are to work as citizens to elect good, God fearing leaders and change unbiblical laws.

We are to bring about justice in the criminal justice system by punishing law breakers and making sure that victims of crime are avenged.

Our alternative is found n Psalms 9:17 “The wicked shall be turned into hell and all nations that forget God.” America is no exception.

My Solutions

 

My solution is not to immediately dismantle our welfare system, but to work on a plan that would over a generation allow individuals and families to set up their own investments and insurance programs without tax penalties on capital gains, so that within the next  thirty to fifty years we could gradually phase out Social Security and Medicaire and Medicade

As for our ability to compete in the market place with the nations of the world,  the whole idea of unions must be eliminated. Allow the free market place to do it’s thing. Let the businesses that do the best job succeed and flourish and let those business that  don’t produce excellent products and services and those who mistreat their employees fail.  There will always be a demand for excellent products and services.  The rest don’t deserve to exist.

May God raise up some Godly, principled men and women to run for public office on the local, state and federal level and may we see a return to old fashioned patriotic Americanism.  It’s not too late!

 

 

June 5, 2011 Posted by | America | Comments Off

Reaganism

 

Principles that President Ronald Reagan taught and lived.

He described himself as an undying optimist, especially in regard to America’s future.

Life is one grand sweet song, so start the music.

The top priority of the federal government is the safety of this country.

Some have forgotten why we have a military. It’s not to promote war. It’s to be prepared for peace.

Some people wonder all their lives if they made a difference. The Marines don’t have that problem.

We don’t have a trillion dollar debt because we haven’t taxed enough; we have a trillion dollar debt because we spend too much.

Inflation is as violent as a mugger, as frightening as an armed robber, and as deadly as a hit man.

Man is not free, unless government is limited.

We have long since discovered that nothing lasts longer than a temporary  government program.

Government tends not to solve problems, but to rearrange them.

It is rather to make government work with us, not over us, to stand by our side, not ride on our back.  Government can and must provide opportunity, not smother it; foster productivity, not stifle it.

Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!

I believe that Communism is another sad, bizarre chapter in human history whose last pages even now are being written.

Always remember that you are Americans, and it is your birthright to dream great dreams in this sweet and blessed land, truly the greatest, freest, strongest nation on earth.

Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal with a big appetite on one end and no responsibility on the other.

How can a President not be an actor?

I have wondered at times what the Ten Commandments would have looked like if Moses had run them through Congress.

While I take inspiration from the past, like most Americans,  I live for the future.

If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we will be a nation gone under.

There is no institution more vital to our nation’s survival, than the American family.

Through love and instruction, discipline, guidance and example, we learn from our mothers and fathers the values that will shape our private lives and our public citizenship.

With our eyes fixed on the future, but recognizing the realities of today… we will achieve our destiny to be a shining city on a hill for all mankind to see.

Don’t let anyone tell you that America’s best days are behind her- that the American spirit has been vanquished.  We’ve seen it triumph too often in our lives to stop believing in it now.

______

From Reagan Ranch  2011 Calendar celebrating Ronald Reagan’s 100th birthday.    Born February 6th, 1911

August 7, 2010 Posted by | America | Comments Off

Thomas Jefferson said:

 

 The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.  

 It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world.

I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.

 My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government.  

 No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.  

The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.  

 

 The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.  

To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical. 

‘I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.  If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around the banks will deprive the people of all property – until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered .

May 2, 2010 Posted by | America | Comments Off

OUR SILENT GOD

Solomon’s temple, one of the architectural wonders of the world, was built silently.  According to I Kings 6:1-7 there were no sounds of iron tools such as hammers, chisels, etc.  All the measuring and cutting of stones was done at the quarry.  The temple went up at the building site in total silence as the men put the pre-measured, pre-cut stones into their proper places. 

Is this just mere trivia?  Not at all.  Nothing about the Bible is trivial. Everything is for a reason.  There’s something intriguing about this silence. It tells us something about God and of how He works. Consider

OUR SILENT GOD

 

The universe moves in its orbit in total silence. The sun  rises and sets  in total silence.  At the Grand Canyon and other marvelous natural wonders, the hushed silence is noticeable as people ponder God’s creation.

Oh yes, there is the occasional roar of thunder and lightening storms, of tornadoes and hurricanes and other natural disasters.  That’s all part of the curse of sin on this earth.  So are the angry screams and roarings of anger and rage as sinful people vent their sinful hearts.

Babies are formed silently in the womb.  They continue to grow from infancy to old age, all in silence.   All of God’s creation moves through time and space in total silence.  

Though God moves and acts in silence; the redeemed respond in worship and praise in a great variety of beautiful melodious and harmonious music to God and in joyful fellowship with Him and with one another.  

By contrast there is the mind-numbing dissonant cacophony of discord and confusion in hell’s music.

As one who loves God-glorifying music, I can’t wait to hear and participate in its variety and perfection in Heaven.

In the midst of God’s silence, when it seems as though nothing good is happening and God is not answering our prayers;  we can take comfort that God is at work in our lives and working all things together for our good.

Listen to the third stanza of the Christmas carol, “O Little Town of Bethlehem as it speaks to us of Christ’s coming into this world.

“How silently, how silently, the wondrous Gift is given.

So God impart to human heart the blessings of His Heaven.

No ear may hear His coming, but in this world of sin;

Where meek souls will receive Him still, the dear Christ enters in.”

As physical growth takes place silently in the body of a child who eats, drinks, exercises and rests; so spiritual growth occurs silently in those who feed on His Word and surrender to His will. 

In this message, consider the silence of:

1. Worshiping God

2. Serving God

3, Effecting change in individuals, churches, nations and the world.

THE SILENCE OF WORSHIP

 

Habakkuk 2:20 instructs us regarding worship,  “The Lord is in His holy temple. Let all the earth be silent before Him.”  Reverential silence is to be desired in worship. It’s not that  there should be a funeral-like silence in the church; but a respectful, reverential silence is often missing.

There is a place in worship for loud, joyful, Biblically-based, instrumental and vocal music  as David describes it in the Psalms, some of which are Psalm 33:3,  66:1-2,  81:1-3,  95:1-3,  98:4-9,  100.  Quiet, peaceful music that turns our thoughts to reflecting on Christ and what He means to us also has a place in worship. 

Not only should we joyfully sing from our hearts, but we should reach out in Christian fellowship to others in genuine love, warmth and friendliness.

Let us show respectful, reverential treatment of our church property, including our rest rooms, sanctuary and hymn books.  At the same time, keep in mind that our bodies are the true sanctuary in whom the Holy Spirit dwells.  As much as it is important to take care of our church sanctuary, it is even more important that we recognize our bodies as the true sanctuary and holy property of God, as I Corinthians 6 teaches. 

The highest form of worship takes place silently in our hearts as we worship the Lord in Spirit and as He prepares our hearts for the Truth of His Word, the Bible.  John 4:24

Certainly singing hymns and choruses from a wicked, rebellious heart is blasphemous, according to Amos 5:21-24.

THE SILENCE OF DOING GOD’S WORK

 

As Isaiah prophesied  of Jesus’ ministry in Isaiah 42:1-4, Jesus ministered quietly. He was not a rabble-rouser.  Though we are to always be ready to share the Gospel; our witness is empowered by the silent witness of a consistent godly life.  If we are failing to live it, it would be better to be silent about our love for Christ, because our hypocrisy brings shame to His name. 

Paul writes in II Thessalonians 3:11-12 that we are to mind our own business as we do our own work quietly.  Jesus gives a wonderful description of the attitudes of the Christian life in His Beatitudes in Matthew 5:3-16.  For more on this, go to my link, Beatitudes, on this web site.

God’s work takes time, energy and commitment; however, we must avoid  frenzied activity. Yes, we get physically tired and emotionally drained, but in our weakness, He promises His strength.  Read some of the wonderful promises upon which we can rest in our times of weariness.  Isaiah 40:29-31, 30:15, Zechariah 4:6  and Matthew 11:28-30.

THE SILENCE OF EFFECTING POLITICAL CHANGE

 

The political situation in America and throughout the world today is not encouraging, to say the least.

I am convinced from Scripture that my calling as a preacher is not to get caught up in politics and political and social causes.  I believe that through my faithful preaching of the Word and magnifying Christ, I can quietly be used of God to effect changes in values and thus changes in political thinking as changed people seek political leaders who best reflect their changed values.

As Christians are grounded in God’s Word, they become like King David’s mighty men described in I Chronicles 12:15-40  Note especially verse 32 as the men of Issachar are described.  They were men who “had an understanding of the times and knew what Israel ought to do.”

God is not impressed with big crowds nor majorities. In fact, God does not get the biggest crowds in this world today.  The devil does. He not only gets the biggest crowds, but he also makes the most noise.  We accomplish nothing by trying to out-shout him.

God still speaks with a “still small voice.”  I Kings 19:11-12

“Be still and know that I am God.”  Psalm 46:10

“Stand in awe and sin not: commune with your own heart upon your bed and be still. Psalm 4:4

Our strength in times of trouble is to sit still. Isaiah 30:1-7

We are to study to learn to be quiet before God. I Thessalonians 4:11.

We are to pray for our leaders that we may enjoy a peaceable and quiet life. I Timothy 2:1-2

A woman’s greatest strength is her “meek and quiet spirit”.  I Peter 3:4

How does God change our nation?  Quietly without any big show or loud commotion as we Christians get right with God.  II Chronicles 7:14

September 2, 2009 Posted by | America, Worship Series | Comments Off

The Kingdom of God in America

America was founded as a Christian nation.  Although that truth has been removed from the modern history books used in public schools today, the fact remains that the colonists who came over from England and  settled along our eastern shores, came not primarily to seek gold and wealth; nor did they come to these shores to gain freedom from religion,  but freedom from the control and the oppression of a State Church and for freedom to worship and serve God according to the dictates of their conscience.

 

These colonists were not merely religious; they were Christians.  Listen to testimonies of this down through the last four centuries. 

 

John Winthrop, aboard the Arabela in 1630 reminded the colonists, “We are a company professing ourselves fellow members of Christ.”

 

Alexis de Tocqueville, a French philosopher who visited America in 1831 wrote, “There is no country in the world where the Christian religion retains a greater influence over the souls of men than in America.”

 

President Woodrow Wilson in 1911 wrote, “America was born a Christian nation. America was born to exemplify that devotion to the elements of righteousness which are derived from the revelations of Holy Scripture.”

 

President Truman to Pope Pius XII in 1947 wrote, “This is a Christian nation.”

 

Former Governor of Mississippi, Kirk Fordice stated on CNN,  “Christianity is the predominate religion in America. We all know that is an incontrovertible fact.  The media always refers to the Jewish State of Israel, they talk about the Muslim countries of Saudi Arabia, Iran and Iraq.  We all talk about the Hindu nation of IndiaAmerica is not a nothing country. It’s a Christian country.”

 

Though the Seeds of Righteousness had been planted in the heart of the Colonists, it wasn’t long before Satan  sowed his tares in hearts.  The colonists needed to be revived.  In answer to prayer, God sent godly preachers to them, men such as Jonathan Edwards and George Whitefield.   They preached the Gospel to tens of thousands during the decades of  1730-1740.  People got right with God and their hearts were prepared for their struggle against England and for the founding of America, a new nation free from the control of a state church and free to worship and serve God.

 

Our founders cried to God in prayer for wisdom and unity as they began the process of establishing this Republic.  Our founding documents, including our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution are filled with reference to our dependence upon God. Our nation’s hallowed buildings and monuments  are filled with Biblical  references carved in stone  to God’s glory and to our sacred purpose as a nation

 

Wherever God is at work, you can be sure the devil is also at work attempting to undo what God has done.   By the end of the 18th century, Liberalism had begun to take control of seminaries and pulpits across America and was turning America away from the God of their fathers.

 

WHAT IS LIBERALISM?

 

Liberalism is basically the denial of the Bible as the inspired, inerrant Word of God.  It is the denial of the deity of Jesus. The Liberal may use the adjective divine to describe Jesus as being God-like, but they reject the deity of Christ,  the truth that the man Jesus who walked in Palestine 2000 years ago and then died on a cross, is God in a human body. Of course, along with that rejection of the deity of Christ, was the denial of His virgin birth, His miracles and His bodily resurrection.

 

A liberal is at heart a Unitarian, that is, one who denies the Trinity,  He is at heart a Universalists, that is, one who believes “all roads lead to Heaven and eventually all will be in Heaven”.  They repudiate the truth that Christ rejecters suffer for eternity in Hell.

 

A liberal rejects the Biblical truth that God created the universe in six days simply by the power of His Word. He would rather choose to believe his god of chance, evolution, as the answer to the source of life on earth. He would reject the universal, world wide flood in which all but Noah and his family and the animals in the ark were annihilated.

 

The liberal  judges the Bible by his own mind and refuses to submit to the Bible which  judges all men as sinners under God’s judgment.

 

The liberal’s idea of Christianity is subjective,  based on his reason and experience. He refuses to base it on the Bible.  He interprets it in the light of limited knowledge and teaches it with his unregenerate mind simply as an ethical way of life that we must all strive to live.

 

I argue that if Jesus is not God, as He claimed to be,  then He was a liar and a fraud and therefore not a good teacher. Therefore a liberal is inconsistent in claiming to follow Christ.

 

HOW DO LIBERALS WORK?

 

Liberals believe they are building the Kingdom of God by capturing the hearts and minds of the masses through gaining control of our educational system, our legislative system and the media over the past century. They have been very successful at that. The public school system and most colleges and universities teach the religion of liberalism and humanism.  The way they have accomplished that has been to legislate the Bible from the classroom or in some cases teach it only from a Liberal perspective.  Thus Satan has accomplished his purpose  in turning America, a nation founded on Christianity, into a secular nation.  With their liberal values, they have turned well over half of America into a liberal, secular, godless nation.

 

The National Council of Churches and the World Council of Churches, founded about sixty years ago,  unite liberal minded churches who advance the liberal social gospel throughout our nation and the world.

 

American Liberalism began in New England in the latter part of the eighteenth century when a handful of Boston area ministers called for a modern rational Christianity.  Hence Liberals were often referred to as Modernists up through the first half of the twentieth century.

 

Their so-called enlightenment ideas gave rise to American Unitarianism and Universalism at the dawn of the 19th century. Perhaps the major fountainhead of Liberalism in America has been Union Theological Seminary in New York City. From there it has spread to most of the major denominational seminaries and State Universities.

 

Again, I remind you that Liberals basically feel they are building the Kingdom of God on earth. Their goal is to promote their idea of the universal fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man.  For more on this subject go to  my link LIBERALISM.

 

WHAT IS FUNDAMENTALISM?

 

At the beginning of the 20th century, in response to the rising tide of liberalism in America,  a group of Bible believing ministers and seminary professors from the major Protestant denominations rose up to form the Fundamentalist Movement, a movement who, as the Apostle Paul in Philippians 1:17, was set for the defense of The Gospel.

 

These Fundamentalists, though having their denominational differences, agreed on what became known as the Fundamentals of the Christian Faith. They were godly Christian scholars who agreed that the Bible is the inspired, inerrant Word of God,  that Jesus is God in human flesh, born of the virgin Mary, and that He  suffered and shed His blood on the cross to make a perfect atonement for the sins of all mankind. Fundamentalist believe that Jesus arose in His glorified body back to Heaven and that He is returning one day to judge the world and set up His Kingdom on this earth.

 

An important doctrine that marked the Fundamentalist Movement was an insistence on Biblical separation from apostasy.  This is clearly taught in the Bible in both the Old and New Testament.  Some of the major New Testament passages on this subject are found in Romans 16:17-18,  II Corinthians 6:14-18,  Ephesians 5:11  II John 7-11  Jude 3-4 and Revelation 18:4.

 

 

WHAT IS NEO-ORTHODOXY?

 

The Liberal’s dream of bringing in the Golden age of the  Kingdom was dashed with World War I and further crushed with World War II.  About that time a new theological movement was exported from Germany,  Neo-Orthodoxy. 

 

An Orthodox Christian is one who holds faithfully to the Christian Faith. 

 

The term Neo-Orthodox was actually a contradictory term.  How can one come up with a new position concerning the Christian Faith which was once  for all given to the Church, as Jude 3 teaches?

 

No, the term Neo Orthodox was a misnomer for this new theological movement from Europe.  A better name would have been Neo-Liberalism. This new theological movement that swept America’s seminaries almost a century ago was another  “wolf in sheep’s clothing” about which Jesus had warned.  This new movement was rooted in the works of Kant, Schleimacher, and Hegel.  The works of Karl Barth, Emil Brunner and Soren Kierkegaard popularized it in America. Reinhold Niebuhr, a promoter of the Socialist Party in America, was also a leader in this new movement.

 

The Neo Orthodox are masters of double-talk. They say, “Though the Bible is not inerrant, it becomes the Word of God to us whenever it speaks to us.”   Though they deny the bodily resurrection of Jesus, they wax eloquent when they preach on the Resurrection at Easter.   Though they deny that Jesus shed His blood on the cross to appease the wrath of God for our sins, they preach eloquently on the cross of Christ and His love for us.

 

If our sins do not incur for us the wrath of God and eternal damnation in hell fire, then why on earth did Jesus go to the cross and endure  the worst torture and means of death that anyone could ever devise?  Why did He have to show His love to us that way?  That doesn’t make sense. In fact, it would be sheer stupidity.

 

If you were in your front yard watching your home burn to the ground and a fireman should rush into your house, knowing there was no one to save, yet should stay there and burn to death to show his love for you, that would be ridiculous.

 

If on the other hand you were in the burning house trying to escape and a fireman should come rushing in to help you escape and in the process he should die in the flames, that would be an act of pure love.

 

Neo Orthodoxy, which denies the truth that all men are sinners and are sentenced to eternal damnation in Hell fire, teaches the irrational doctrine that Jesus endured the torments of death on a cross just to show how much He loves us.   Of course, He loved us.  He died on the cross and shed His blood because He loved sinners and He paid the penalty of death that we deserved to pay in Hell for eternity. He paid that penalty for a world of sinners by enduring the death that we all deserved to pay. Those who reject Christ as their Saviour will suffer in Hell for their own sins.

 

Christ’s death on the cross makes no sense unless He died to be the propitiation or to appease God’s wrath that we deserved to suffer for our sins.  See my link on PROPITIATION for more on this.

 

Neo-Orthodoxy denies the orthodox position of inerrancy and verbal, plenary inspiration. By that term we mean that every word in the Bible is completely inspired by God and is accurate, whether it refers to science or history or anything else.  Neo-Orthodoxy teaches that as the authors of the Bible wrote, they interpreted the events or the words of Jesus,  writing their own flawed interpretations. But in this gobbledygook of error, “the Bible becomes the Word of God whenever it speaks to us”.

 

Whereas Orthodoxy accepts the Bible as the complete and sufficient revelation of God to us, Neo-Orthodoxy believes that the Bible is merely a medium of revelation.  Orthodoxy claims it is God’s Revelation to us.

 

To the Neo-Orthodox, truth  is defined as that which is relevant to his experience  or to his personal interpretation, making the discovery of  truth a mystical experience, rather than a concrete fact.  See my article on EXISTENTIALISM on this web site for more on this confusion that is associated with Neo-Orthodoxy.

 

Neo-Orthodoxy further teaches that Scripture is not the only form of revelation, but that further revelation can be directly obtained from God as He speaks directly to us apart from the Scriptures.  This explains the modern “prophetic ministry” which has become a norm in liberal and Charismatic Churches. 

 

Speaking of the gift of prophecy, let me clarify.  In the early church, before the Bible was completed,  there were those who had the gift of prophecy.  In the early church service one with this gift would stand up and prophecy, declaring truth given to him by God.  When the Bible was completed, that gift, along with the gift of tongues, vanished away, according to I Corinthians 13:8-10

 

If a church has come to the place where she believes that Truth is revealed directly and that it is subject to the interpretation of each individual  and that God is still declaring new truth and new revelation, then they have departed from the Truth of God’s Word and according to Revelation 22:18-19 they bring judgment on themselves.

 

We hold and preach the Bible, the complete Word of God.  Let’s not lose it by departing from it to seek new revelations and mysticism, the very foundation of Liberalism and Neo-Orthodoxy.

 

WHAT IS NEW EVANGELICALISM?

 

By the 1940’s a number of Fundamentalists were fighting one another over issues that had nothing to do with the defense of The Faith.  There was a spirit of negativism and legalism in some quarters of this movement.

 

With Neo Orthodoxy sweeping the country, a new generation of Fundamentalists were enthralled by what they were hearing from the Neo Orthodox. They thought,  “They sound so much like Christians. Surely they must be our brothers in Christ.” 

 

In 1950 a group of these former Fundamentalist leaders decided in a meeting in Pasadena, California to disassociate themselves from the Fundamentalist movement and become known as the New Evangelicals. Christianity Today, a brand new periodical, began to be published to promote this new movement. I remember as a young pastor receiving some of the first issues.  The New Evangelicals  reached out to the Neo Orthodox.  They invited them to teach in their Colleges and Seminaries.  They invited them into their pulpits.  They worked with them in ecumenical evangelistic crusades.   They channeled the converts into their churches.  For all intents and purposes, they eradicated the theological  differences between them.

 

These New Evangelicals were “throwing out the baby with the bathwater.” That is, they were giving up their Biblical stand against false doctrine and ignoring the Biblical doctrine of separation  because some Fundamentalists were bringing a bad name on the Fundamentalist movement and because they felt that they were basically one with the Neo Orthodox.

 

Chances are you have never heard the terms Neo Orthodox or New Evangelical. They are both passé and irrelevant today.

 

In the meantime, over the past sixty years or so,  this compromise has had a tsunami-sized negative influence in Christian churches. The Christian’s compromise with unbelief has resulted in a massive almost sudden change in the church.  I’ve watched it happen before my eyes as it grew with blinding speed in the early 60’s  and it has broken my heart.

 

There is theological confusion in churches and Christian colleges and seminaries across our land and they are beginning to accept the old fashioned unbelief of the liberals.   If I were a parent of college students today, I would be very cautious of some “Christian” colleges. I’ve observed graduates of these schools come out with a disdain for the Biblical doctrines and values and with an acceptance of liberal values.

 

Modern churches are more concerned about giving people what they want to hear, inoffensive preaching that does not  cramp their sinful lifestyle; rather than preaching the truth that often offends. We Fundamentalists are often branded legalists for our stands against sin.  For a correct  understanding of legalism I challenge you to go to my study of Galatians under the category FREEDOM. There you will learn what true legalism is and how the Apostle Paul dealt with it.

 

As one who loves and appreciates beautiful, inspiring Christian music, I grieve over its loss to the past two generations. Though some modern Christian composers have given us some quality Contemporary  Christian music, volumes of beautiful Christian music written and sung prior to the ’60’s has been lost to this current generation.  Why discard generations of Scriptural, beautiful hymns of the church to limit yourselves to one style of music?

 

I’ll agree that some of the Christian songs we teens sang in the ’40’s and ’50’s were silly and insipid; but most of what we sang in church and in our youth meetings had spiritual substance and was sung to music that lifted us to Heaven. I grieve when I think of what modern Christians have never known and its replacement with irritating noise lacking melody, harmony and a solid Biblical message, with it’s relentless, same, boring rock beat. Congregations no longer sing four part harmony in the typical church. I listen to them attempt to sing, groaning in a monotone, looking up at the screen, not knowing where the melody is going.

 

Churches today are majoring on fleshly worship experiences and minoring on preaching.   The average Christian today has little or no appetite for Biblical preaching. But we should not be surprised.  Paul warned it would happen. Read II Timothy 4:1-4

 

All of this has resulted in the weakening of Christians and making them more susceptible to the lure of the world, the flesh and the devil.

 

I think we have almost come full circle.  Christians from evangelical churches are  accepting the liberal’s view of missions as simply meeting the social needs of people, with little or no thought to the preaching of the Gospel that saves a sinner from hell.

 

I am not advocating that Christians should not help meet the material and health and educational needs of the lost in third world countries.  I’m simply warning that if that is all we are doing we are helping well fed, well clothed, educated, healthy sinners continue on their way to hell.

 

My prayer is that God would bring the Church back to the solid preaching of the Word of God and make us aware of the subtlety of Satan.  At the same time, may we be loving and kind in our dealing with one another as brothers and sisters in Christ. 

 

I challenge you to read through Paul’s thirteen Epistles and note how much concern and attention he gives by inspiration of God to warning of the dangers of compromise with unbelief.  Read the warnings Jesus gave in His Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 7.

 

“When the Son of Man cometh, shall He find faith on the earth?”  Luke 18:8  I wonder!

 

“Even so, come, Lord Jesus!”  Revelation 22:20

 

April 10, 2009 Posted by | America | Comments Off

Election-Eve Meditation

If you are concerned and worried about the election and the spiritual condition of America, take time to read and meditate on the following passages from God’s Word.

 

 Pray, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done.” Matthew 6:10   

It all starts with submission to God’s will and a desire for God to be glorified, and with an understanding that God knows what He is doing.

 

“For promotion cometh neither from the east nor from the west, nor from the south, for God is the judge: He putteth down one, and setteth up another.”  Psalm 75:6-7 

Understand that God is in charge; not the electorate. God uses the electorate to accomplish His sovereign will.

 

“Surely the wrath of man shall praise Thee. The remainder of wrath He restrains.”  Psalm 76:10

God never wastes the wrath of man nor allows them to carry out their wrathful, ungodly agenda, beyond His will. God never loses control of a situation.

 

“The Most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever He will, and setteth up over it (even) the basest of men.”    Daniel 4:17

God is the Sovereign Ruler of the universe. He uses  evil man as well as good to accomplish His will.

 

“I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto Heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the Most High,  and I praised and honored Him that liveth forever,  whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and His Kingdom is from generation to generation. And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and He doeth according to His will in the army of Heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay His hand, or say, ‘What doest Thou?”   Daniel 4:34-35

God humbled proud Nebuchadnezzar and he became a worshipper of the God of Israel. He was enabled to understand God and God’s ways in a way that many Christian’s today fail to understand Him.

 

“Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God; the  powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.” Romans 13:1-2 

Regardless of who is elected, God allowed it and ordained it. We must submit ourselves to God unconditionally and to human government conditionally, as long as human government does not command us to disobey God’s Word.

 

In that case, we must submit to God and accept the consequences, as Daniel’s three friends, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, did when they refused to obey King Nebuchadnezar’s order to bow down and worship his image.  Daniel 3 tells the wonderful story of how they were cast into a fiery furnace and came out unscathed without even the smell of smoke on them.  as recorded in Daniel 3.

 

In Daniel 4 we read the amazing story of how God changed the heart of Nebuchadnezzar and he became a worshipper of the one true God of Israel.

 

Years later, Daniel, himself also disobeyed the decree of Darius of Persia, prohibiting him to pray to God.  In spite of the decree, Daniel continued to pray to God and for that he was cast into a den of lions. Read how God wonderfully spared his life and changed the heart of Darius.

 

As we read through the Book of Daniel, we have to be impressed with how God took Daniel, a young Israelite captive, who determined to be  faithful to God as a young man,  and used him to influence two empires, Babylon and Persia,  for God’s glory.

 

God is looking for godly young men and women today whom He can use to impact nations for Him.

 

“If My people which are called by My name, shall humble themselves and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from Heaven and will forgive their sin. and heal their land.”   

II Chronicles 7:14

Here is a wonderful promise to God’s people in any age that if we will meet His conditions, He will heal our sin-sick nation.  America, it’s not too late for us. But it all begins with Christians.  We must be broken and repentant before God whom we have offended with our sins.  When Christians get right with God, He will heal our nation. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

November 2, 2008 Posted by | America | Comments Off

America

In 1776 America was born in one of the greatest explosions of freedom in all of history 

Our Founding Fathers paid the ultimate price for the freedoms and blessings we enjoy today. The greatest document in all of history,  next to the Bible,  is the Constitution of the United States of America with its republic form of government; with it’s checks and balances in it’s three branches of government: executive, legislative and judicial  and with its free elections.  The 1700′s was the time of our childhood with its zeal and excitement.The 1800′s was  the time of our adolescent idealism.The 1900′s was the time of our affluent middle age. About that time the fatal disease of humanism began to destroy us, the disease that makes man his own god. It was during this time that the Bible upon which our nation was founded began to be rejected and become irrelevant. Since that time our nation has rapidly declined as evidenced by our godless modern culture, our rising national debt, racial strife, immorality, abortion and all sorts of crime and political confusion as well as our increasing loss of liberty.

Why are we losing our liberties? 

 We are losing our liberties to  increasing government bureaucracy and control because we have failed to understand the relationship of liberty and responsibility. 
Liberty is earned by assuming responsibility.  An adult who has not learned responsibility soon discovers that his liberties are severely curtailed.  A prisoner has no responsibilities and no freedom.  He has no internal control, so he is controlled externally. 

What is that internal control?   

  

CHARACTER!  Character is a quality of life. It affects our personality, attitudes, convictions and life-style.  It results in a person’s basic philosophy of life. Character is the  willingness and the ability to assume responsibility which  results in freedom.

  

How does character affect the way we live?

1. We keep our word.

2. We  pay our bills on time.

3. We keep our appointments on time.

4. We control our use of credit, never allowing ourselves to go over our head in debt.

5. We work faithfully for our employer, even when other workers are wasting time.

6. Employers pay their employees generously and produce products and services of value.

7. Students do their homework without being coaxed or threatened.

8. Children do their chores without being told.

9. We clean our homes instead of flopping on the couch and watching TV all day.

10. It enables parents to carry out needed discipline, even when they don’t feel like it.

11. It helps us go to church when we would rather stay home and watch TV. or go fishing.

12. It helps us keep our promises.

13. It enables a married couple to stay together, even when their love  grows cold at times.

14. It enables a young couple to be pure on a date, even when the temptation is strong to do wrong.

15. It gives courage to stand publicly for that which is right, even when scorned and ostracized.

16. It give strength to be honest when we are tempted to cheat. 

What is true of individuals is also true of nations.  Look at Israel in the Old Testament.  When Israel obeyed God’s Laws, they had freedom under God. When they disobeyed, they lost their freedoms.  The more character  Israel  had, the more internal strength they had and the heathen fled before them. On the other hand, the less character Israel had, the less strength they had and they fled from their enemies.

  

What gave character to the Founders of our nation and brought about the freedom we enjoy as Americans? 

The Pilgrims who came to our shores from England and Europe, brought with them a Biblical philosophy  and life-style. This equipped them for the severe hardships and struggles of founding a new nation.  Their Biblical philosophy was foundational to their lives: personally, economically, socially, politically, and educationally. Every decision was made in the light of the Bible. 

Over the next century a surge of immigration brought in a diversified population with no unifying element, except a desire for liberty and opportunity. The Church and State became increasingly separated. At the beginning of the eighteenth century revival fires began to burn all over America as preachers like Jonathan Edwards, George Whitfield,  John and Charles Wesley and others preached God’s Word. God used this to bring about The Great Awakening.  Christian colleges such as Harvard, PrincetonRutgers, Dartmouth, Yale and others were established by Christian leaders of character. Jonathan Edwards, the preacher who preached the famous sermon, “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” was the first president of Princeton. These and other schools throughout the land trained the preachers and political leaders who eventually established our  “one nation under God” and produced a generation of citizens who were ready to assume  freedom with its responsibilities.

  

What has happened to bring America to its moral low today? 

The rise of religious liberalism during the nineteenth century and  on into the twentieth century  led people to reject the inspiration and  infallibility of the Bible and with that rejection of God and His moral standards,  there came a growing acceptance of immorality.  Movies and television  have made it increasingly popular and accepted. Humanism invaded our public schools, fathered by Horace Mann and John Dewey.

By 1963 the Bible and prayer were legislated out of the public schools and out of our national life. As a result, our population lost their character and sense of responsibility. We lost our dependence on God and put our dependence on government.

It was no longer, “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.”  instead it’s “The government is my Shepherd, I shall not want.”  We either choose security by the government or find our security in God.  The only true freedom we can ever know is  freedom under God  A prisoner is totally secure and totally a slave of the penal system.  A lion in the zoo  is totally secure and has no freedom to be what he was born to be. So is the citizen who has learned to depend on the government for his support.   

What happens when people lose their character? 

1. They gradually lose their freedoms as the government takes over the control of their lives. 

2. They lose pride in workmanship.

3. They become sloppy and dirty.

4. They don’t care about others.  They only care about what they can get out of government.

5. They develop an “anything goes” mentality.

6. They cease being truthful and trustworthy.

7. As a nation loses character, it affects the monetary system. Money loses its value. Property,   houses, cars     and other things don’t increase in value.  It only takes more  dollars of less value  to buy them.

8. Music, art and literature are affected by loss of character as beauty is replaced by ugliness.

9. Like the people who rejected God in the book of Judges, we become a lawless society as “every man does     that which is right in his own eyes.”

In the past  50 years I’ve watched with a broken heart as America has slidden down the slide of immorality at an ever-increasing rate of speed.

  

What is our only hope?

 Our hope is not political, nor is it  found in the field of education.   Wall Street and the Federal Reserve System cannot solve our problem.  There is NO HOPE for America apart from turning back to God and to the Bible.  It starts with Christians.  “If MY people who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from Heaven  and will forgive their sins and heal their land.” II Chronicles 7:14  That’s the only answer to the mess we find ourselves in America today. 

Christians must take the lead by getting right with God.  When that happens  God will intervene and  restore this nation.    “Righteousness exalteth a nation.  But sin is a reproach to any people.”  Proverbs 14:34  Throughout Old Testament history God gave Israel opportunities to repent. Whenever  they did,  freedom, peace and prosperity were restored.  God can do the same for us.  If we refuse to repent, our nation’s super-power status may  diminish to that of a third world power or into oblivion.

 ******* 

Heavenly Father, Forgive us Christians for our Laodicean* attitude. Turn us  back to the Bible and back to You. Help us as Christians to lead the way through our life and testimony. Help us to raise up a godly generation of young people who will reclaim this land.  Remove from national, state and local offices those who hate and oppose You and give us godly men and women to lead this nation.  Silence the voices and weaken the influence of those who rise up against You and against Your children.  Help us once more to return to the Bible for direction to guide us as a nation.   Lord Jesus, we look forward to the day when You will return to this earth as King of kings and Lord of lords and begin Your reign of peace and justice over the whole world.  We gladly submit to you right now to be King and Lord of our lives.  Use us to bless America and glorify Your name.   We ask in  Jesus name, Amen. * Revelation 3:14-22

I received most of this information from Dr. Don Howard’s pastor’s training to have an Accelerated Christian Education school in my church back in the early 70′s.

June 3, 2007 Posted by | America | Comments Off

America: Declaration of Independence

Whereas the Spanish explorers first came to our Southwest and to places such as what became St. Augustine, Florida over 500 years ago in search of gold and also to extend the Roman Catholic Church into these regions;  it was not until one hundred years later that the Pilgrims from England came to our eastern shores seeking to establish a new life for themselves, free from the repressive power and persecution of the spiritually dead  State Church.

 

Jamestown Colony in 1607  and Plymouth Colony in 1620 were but two of many colonies that were founded by the English colonists up and down the Eastern seaboard of what is now the United States of America.   It took about 150 years of oppressive regulation and taxation of England to bring these pioneers to the point of rebelling against this oppression and declaring their independence from England by writing and signing the all-important document,  our Declaration of Independence on July 4th, 1776.

 

The signers of this awesome document came from all thirteen of our original colonies, including John Hancock from Massachusetts, the only one who signed it on July 4th. He  scrawled his name across the bottom of the document “largely and clearly so King George III could read it without his spectacles”.  The other 56 delegates to that Continental Congress added their signatures on August 2nd.

 

The signers were all men of means and educated: including lawyers, jurists, merchants, farmers and large plantation owners.  What a price those brave men paid for their signatures, knowing full well they would face death if captured!  Their fate is well known and recorded by many.

 

Five were captured by the British as traitors and tortured to death.  Many had their homes ransacked and burned.

 

Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader saw his ships destroyed. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died a pauper.

Thomas McKean of Delaware was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly. He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding. His possessions were taken from him, and he died in poverty.

Vandals looted the properties of Ellery of Rhode Island, Clymer of Pennsylvania, Hall of Georgia, Walton of Georgia, Gwinnett of Georgia, Heyward of South Carolina, Ruttledge of South Carolina, and Middleton of South Carolina.

At the battle of Yorktown, Thomas Nelson Jr., of Virginia, knowing that the British General Cornwallis had taken over his home for his headquarters urged General George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.

Francis Lewis of New York lost his home and properties. His wife was jailed and she died within a few months.

John Hart of New Jersey was driven from his wife’s bedside as she was dying. Their 13 children fled for their lives. His fields and his grist mill were destroyed. For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished. A few weeks later he died from exhaustion and a broken heart. Lewis Morris of New York and Philip Livingston of New York suffered similar fates.

Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin were among prominent Americans well known in England. Yet both signed enthusiastically knowing they would be hanged if caught. Jefferson risked Monticello and Franklin his wealth and world prestige if independence was not secured.

Such were the stories and sacrifices of the American Revolution. These were not wild eyed, rabble-rousing ruffians. They were soft-spoken men of means and education. They had security, but they valued liberty more than security. Standing tall, straight, and unwavering, they pledged:

“For the support of this declaration, with firm reliance on the protection of the divine providence, we mutually pledge to each other, our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.”

Where are such men of honor and principle to be found today?  No wonder America became a great nation and has been blessed beyond measure by Almighty God!

Can America endure much longer when the God who gave us our freedom is being mocked in the class room  and His Word is being driven out of our national life and the Christianity upon which we were founded is bring replaced by the false religions of “liberalism”, “multiculturalism” and “political correctness”? 

For a definition and explanation of liberalism, see my article on this topic in this series. 

June 2, 2007 Posted by | America | Comments Off

Liberalism

 

The great divide in America is not red states vs blue states.  It is not between Democrats and Republicans. Basically it is a conflict between liberal philosophy and conservative philosophy

 

The conflict between Liberals and Conservatives is more of a spiritual issue than a political issue, although it certainly has political repercussions.  Liberals and Conservatives are found in both major political parties. The word  liberal is a good word.  The word means generous and broadminded.  Proverbs 11:25 states, “The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered himself.”  However, the name liberal has been applied in the religious arena to those who deny the  inspiration and infallibility of the Bible and  the doctrine of Christ. A more accurate name for such would be heretic.

 

Liberals Worship Their Minds

 

Liberals consider themselves intellectually superior to Conservatives and they look down on those who believe the Bible to be the inspired, infallible Word  of God  as ignorant, simplistic and inferior. Instead of allowing God’s Word to judge their minds,  they judge the Bible by their own minds.  They determine their own moral standards which are directly opposite from the moral standards of the Bible.   That’s why when it comes to moral issues,  Liberals and Conservatives are diametrically opposed to one another. 

 

 What Do Liberals Believe?

 

Liberals believe  that the Old Testament writers had a warped  understanding of God. They believe these ancient writers saw God as a capricious, vengeful, cruel despot.  Liberals  deny that the writers of both the Old and New Testaments were inspired of God.  They believe that the erroneous thinking of the writers flawed their documents which became part of the Bible.

 

Liberals reject the deity of Christ,  but they see Jesus as  a good man who had a more enlightened view of God then the Old Testament writers.  Liberals declare  that because of His teachings, Jesus  was rightfully  called the Son of God.   They deny that Jesus is  the virgin born Son of God who lived a sinless life in a human body, then shed His blood on the cross as the final and complete sacrifice for our sins. Instead, they affirm that Jesus died as a martyr for the things He believed and taught.

 

The Liberal sees God as being so kind and loving that He  overlooks sin.  Liberals reject that God would ever consign anyone to eternal hell.  They teach that everyone is a child of God  and that eventually everyone will be in Heaven.   They say  that it does not matter what you believe;  all roads lead to Heaven.

 

The religious Liberal picks and chooses what he wants to accept in the Bible.  If something speaks to him it becomes the Word of God to him.  If it seems contrary to human reasoning and science, then he rejects it as myth.  Most Liberals would reject a  universal flood in Noah’s day.  They would reject the miracles of the Bible, including the virgin birth of Christ and His bodily resurrection; concluding that His corpse lies as dust in some tomb.

 

When Liberals speak of believing in the resurrection of Christ they mean only that Jesus’ spirit rose in the lives of His followers. It’s true that every Christian is indwelt by the Spirit of Christ. The Bible teaches that the slain body of Jesus literally rose again from the dead three days later in a glorified state and is in Heaven today. Jesus is returning in that body to raise us from the dead, to judge His enemies and  bring in His  everlasting Kingdom of righteousness and peace.  All of this is rejected by Liberals.

 

Liberals reject the creation of man and choose to accept  the evolutionary theory.  They see man as an animal that has evolved to a higher level.  As an animal, they reject the idea of a  human being having a conscience that enables him  to recognize God’s moral standards and know when he has done right or wrong. 

 

Because  Liberals declare there are no absolute moral standards,  but every man has freedom to do whatever he desires;  they welcome the theory of evolution as reason to ignore Almighty God, The Creator;  and reject the moral standards of the Bible.  They reject the fact that all of Adam’s race is born with a sinful nature. They teach that if we just fan the spark  of divine goodness in every man and woman, mankind will continue to evolve and become God-like.  Because of this false premise, it colors their thinking about everything in life.

 

Whereas the Christian’s view of tolerance is to accept others without agreeing with or sharing their beliefs or lifestyle choices; the liberal’s view of tolerance is to accept the beliefs, values, lifestyles and the truth claims of all as of equal value.

 

Whereas the Christian’ source of truth, Christ and His Word, the Bible,  are accepted as absolute and final; the liberal’s view of truth is relative. They tell us that truth is “whatever is right for you.”

 

Whereas the  Christian’s understanding of  right and wrong are determined by the Bible;  the liberal claims that no one has the right to judge another’s views or behaviour as being right or wrong.  Many Christians today have swallowed the liberal’s philosophy that Christians who so judge others are “judgmental”.

 

How Their Liberal Beliefs Affect Their Positions

 

Because  Liberals consider the Old Testament  too harsh,  they are generally opposed to the death penalty for capital  offenses.  They are also basically in favor of showing leniency for those who commit crimes.  They are  for lighter sentences.   They argue that the criminal is not at fault alone.  Rather, they blame society for the criminal’s behavior. To Liberals, criminals are not the problem; guns are the problem. They declare that if we remove guns from the people, that crime will decrease.

 

Because  Liberals are convinced  that man is basically good,  they see no need for a strong military defense.  Instead, they conclude man can bring about world peace through diplomacy alone.

 

Though most Conservatives care about the environment,  Liberals are more incensed by environmental pollution than by  moral pollution.  Interestingly, the same Liberal who is opposed to the death penalty for murderers is usually for killing unwanted babies by abortion.

 

How do Liberals Operate?

 

The Liberal Intelligentsia  promote class warfare. They try to convince the poor and middle class that they are victims of the rich. They see their calling in life to be Robin Hoods; stealing from the rich through excessive taxation to provide government programs for the poor. Instead of solving economic problems, they create  more dependence on government. Many dependants  see themselves as victims of societies inequities and gladly choose those political saviours who offer them the most money and the most security, even it if means less freedom.

 

Liberals  promote their agenda and increase their power by teaching their religion of humanism and socialism in the public schools and secular universities where they are welcomed with open arms. Through their so called “progressive education” they have brought about the dumbing down of America in the past fifty years. Liberals desperately need  to operate among naive, dependant people who will look to them as saviours. 

 

Basically the difference in strategy between  Conservatives and  Liberals is that  Conservatives use facts and reason to appeal to the intellect, while Liberals appeal to emotions to make their points.

 

The Fairness Doctrine

 

The extreme Liberals are Socialists at heart, they are rabid in their desire and efforts to silence all opposition to their views.  When popular conservative talk shows spring up, they are enraged  and attack them furiously with what they call a “Fairness Doctrine”  which is actually an attempt to stifle and control free speech.

 

By this so-called “Fairness Doctrine” for every hour of Conservative talk on the radio and television, they want equal time to let Liberals give their side.   The foolishness about this is that they already have the freedom and opportunity to use the media as much as they wish.  Who is stopping them from presenting their own side?  Their problem is that few Americans want to listen to their drivel and few businesses want to support them. 

 

Whose talking about fairness?  The Liberals already have control of the public educational system from PreSchool through college. They already control the major new media.  What more can they want but the silencing of Conservatism?  

 

How did they gain that power and control? Through the spiritual blindness of Christians who allowed theological liberalism to take control of  their churches over the past two centuries.  Again, I assert that theological liberalism leads to political liberalism.

 

What is the Answer to Liberalism?

 

The only answer to the malaise of Liberalism is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. When one finds salvation in Christ, and starts growing in his Christian faith, he is filled with hope and self-confidence as he learns to put his confidence in God.   He no longer sees himself a victim, but as a victor over his circumstances. He develops a work ethic. He loves the Bible and  rejoices in God’s holy standards and in his freedom in Christ.  Because he has found new life and God’s solution to his problems,  he desires to share the Good News with others.

 

If anyone ever had reason to be a liberal, I did.  I was born into a poor missionary family.  My father died when I was four.  My mother could have taught me how poor we were and how dependent we were on others.   If there had been government relief when I was a child, my mother could have opted for that relief.  Instead of thinking myself a victim and looking for relief from others,  I was taught the value of work and free-enterprise from childhood.

 

Come to think of it, I never even knew I was poor as a child.  I knew nothing of scholarships or government grants. I worked my way through a Christian high school and Christian college, earning my tuition, room and board.  I say all of this; not to boast, but to encourage you who have had it difficult in life.  By the grace of God,  I came to know Jesus from  early childhood. He has given me the confidence and the enthusiasm to tackle the difficulties of life. 

 

I thank God that Jesus is my Saviour,  my Shepherd, my Provider,  my Lord and my God.  I thank God for the Bible, God’s Word  that shows me how to live.  I thank God for the high privilege of being an American citizen and for the freedom I  have enjoyed all my life.  I thank God for our police officers,  fire fighters, and servicemen and women who are defending and protecting  America with their lives. May God bless and protect them.  May God continue to bless America with the freedom that comes from Him alone  and may we Christians in America see our responsibility to take the Gospel of Christ to those around us and to those in other lands who are bound by  Satan and his lies.

June 1, 2007 Posted by | America | Comments Off

AMERICA: Prayer for America

“When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.” Proverbs 29:1 

GOD OF OUR FATHERS   Daniel C. Roberts 

God of our fathers, whose almighty hand Leads forth in beauty all the starry band

Of shining worlds in splendor through the skies,Our grateful songs before Thy throne arise. 

Thy love divine hath led us in the past,In this free land by Thee our lot is cast;

Be Thou our ruler, guardian, guide and stay, Thy Word our law, Thy paths our chosen way. 

From war’s alarms, from deadly pestilence, Be Thy strong arm our eversure defense;

Thy true religion in our heart increase,  Thy bounteous goodness nourish us in peace. 

Refresh Thy people on their toilsome way, Lead us from night to everlasting day;

Fill all our lives with love and grace divine,  And glory, laud, and praise be ever Thine! 

********

Heavenly Father, We thank you that we can call you our Father because we come to you through the merits of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, who died and rose again to save us from our sins. 

 Thank you, Father,  that you invite us to come before Your throne of mercy with all our burdens that we may find grace to help in time of need.  

We thank You that  America was founded by men who honored You  and Your Word.

We thank you for the way You have led us through difficult times when our nation was almost destroyed by hatred and division from the Civil War to our present time.  

We thank you for brave men and women who have fought and sacrificed their lives to defeat the enemies of freedom. 

 Almighty God, as you fought on behalf of your people in  Bible times, we look to you now to strengthen us in our war against devilish terrorism.  Bless the people of Iraq and other nations of the Middle East  with Your peace and with the freedom  of self-government.

Rid this world of tyrants now as you helped us rid the world of Hitler and other tyrants of the past.  Thank you for helping us rid Iraq of Saddam Hussein. Bring peace to the  Middle East.  By Your might, bring the reign of terrorism to an end that the world may know that You are God and beside You there is no other.  Speed the day when our service men and women may return home safely to their families.

 We pray for our President as he leads our nation and as he appoints judges and other office holders.  May there be cooperation in Congress and may good men and women be confirmed to their offices. 

 Remove from office those who have godless agendas and rebel against Your Word.  We pray for the godless of our nation who want nothing to do with You or Your Word and who bitterly hate those who love You. Cause them to come to the end of themselves and fall on their faces before You and see themselves as Your enemies,  headed for eternal destruction.  Cause them to see that their only hope is Jesus Christ.  Father, allow  whatever it takes to bring people to see their desperate need of You. 

 We rejoice that You are still sovereign and one day Jesus will return to this earth to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We thank You that we who trust and love you are on the winning side; that soon we will be in Your presence, free of sin and war and terrorism.  We offer these requests with thanksgiving and praise  to You, our almighty , all wise and loving Heavenly Father through the merits and in the name of our Saviour Jesus Christ.  AMEN  

April 4, 2006 Posted by | America | Comments Off

America the Beautiful

Founded by oppressed Pilgrims who came with their Bibles longing to worship God in  freedom without government restriction, we have a beautiful history.  Our desire to honor God and His Word are inscribed in the buildings and monuments in  Washington DC and in our founding documents as well as  each of the Constitutions of our fifty states.

Our beautiful Constitution was written by men who knew their Bibles and understood the sinfulness of men. Certainly God had a hand in leading the designers of  this amazing document with all its checks and balances, protecting us from taking advantage of one another.  

As “the mixing bowl of the world” we unique Americans are more than European, Spanish, African, Native American, or  Asian.  We gladly forsake our allegiance from the past and blend together into one beautiful American culture. Together, under God and under one flag,  we live and fight our common enemies who would seek to destroy us.

April 4, 2006 Posted by | America | Comments Off

Citizenship

“For our conversation ( citizenship) is in Heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ.”  Philippians 3:19   The Christian has a dual citizenship:  an earthly citizenship and a Heavenly citizenship. 

PERU,  CANADA

The son of missionaries,  I was born in Peru, South America.   When my American father died I returned at the age of four with my mother and my younger brother to her home in Canada where we lived for the next seven years.  At the age of eleven  I  moved with my younger brother  to  “that nation south of the border”, The United States of America.

USA

For the next six years I  had the privilege of attending a one room  Christian school in South Carolina where my Indiana born school teacher, taught me  her love and appreciation for America.  After sitting under Miss Deardurff for three of those six years and learning of our American heritage and how this nation was founded and established under God,  I was proud to be an American.

We Americans are quite an assortment; coming from every nation on the face of the earth basically for one reason, FREEDOM!!!  Those who have lived under tyranny in other lands most appreciate that freedom that we Americans so often take for granted.  But with that freedom comes responsibility.

In our homes and in  our extended family circles,  let us celebrate our native traditions, speak our native languages  and sing our native songs;   but as   American citizens we have  the responsibility to learn the English language, to learn American history, to learn our patriotic songs, to read and study our Constitution and other founding documents so that we may better appreciate our privileges and responsibilities as American citizens. We also have the responsibility to respect and honor our flag,   to obey the laws of our land  and to defend that freedom from those who would subvert it and take it from us.

As  American citizens we have the solemn responsibility  and precious blood bought privilege of voting in our elections.  Our nation owes us nothing but freedom.  Our nation is “We the People!”  None of us are entitled to anything but freedom and protection from our enemies; both foreign and domestic.  Let’s get over this “victim”  mentality; this total dependency on the government to supply all our needs from the cradle to the grave.  Americans are not victims.  The poorest of us are highly favored and privileged to live in this land where anyone with gumption and a degree of health, regardless of his race or nationality, can be successful.  Thank God for the privilege of being born or naturalized American citizens.

HEAVEN

But as privileged as we are to be American citizens,  we are infinitely more privileged to be citizens of Heaven through faith in our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ.  May God help us, as citizens of Heaven,  to be good citizens  of the nation in which God has placed us. All those who honor and seek to obey the Bible  make the best citizens.  We are a blessing and not a burden to our nation. 

Thank God for our godly heritage.  How can we once more return to the God of our fathers and  become a godly nation?   II Chronicles 7:14 puts the responsibility on Christians.  When Christians repent of their sins and turn back to God,  He will hear from Heaven and heal our land. God’s blessing on America lies in the hands of God’s people.  Thank God for the evidences we see that Christians are awakening to their responsibility.

April 2, 2006 Posted by | America | Comments Off

Minding our Own Business

   As Christians, we ought to be model citizens and an asset to our nation. We ought to live a quiet and peaceable life doing our own work, minding our own business, being a good neighbor, helping the weak, being involved in our own communities as we are able and paying our taxes. I Thess. 4:11-12  II Thess. 3:11-12   Romans 13:1-8

Don’t be a disturber of the peace!  Because of our clean, holy living, we ought never to be an unnecessary  tax liability or burden to our society.   We are never to be agitators and disturbers of the peace. We ought not be a danger to our streets and highways by drunken or reckless driving.  We ought not be a burden to our neighborhood with loud, drunken parties, or  by allowing our trash to litter the streets.  We ought not blight the appearance of our neighborhood by allowing our house and yard to become sloppy and run-down.  

Don’t get in their face!

 By our lives and through our prayers we ought to be quietly influencing our nation for good in our homes, in our neighborhoods and in our work place. Jesus described our influence as light and as salt. Matthew 5:13-16  The purpose of light is not to glare, but to give light to those who walk in darkness. The purpose of salt is not to call attention to its presence, but to make food more palatable.  So a Christian is not to live his life in the faces of those he desires to reach with the Gospel,  but as a quiet, helpful friend always ready to give an answer for the hope that lies in us.  Colossians 4:4-6  I Peter 3:15  

Pray for our leaders!

 We, Christ’s Church,  ought to be blessing our neighborhoods and our nation by praying for those around us that they might come to the saving knowledge of Christ.  I Timothy 2:1-4  Pray for our President.  Pray for the members of Congress, including those you detest.  Pray for our state and local officials; that those without Christ may come to know Him as Saviour and Lord.  

Pray for our peace-keepers,

 both our military and our local and state police as they daily risk their lives for our safety and protection.  Romans 13 teaches us that they are servants of God for our good.  Give them your support and appreciation. Next time you get a traffic ticket, thank the cop for doing his job.  

Pray for the garbage collector,

 the meter reader,  the mail man or woman, the school teachers who influence your children.  Thank God especially for every Christian teacher who has a godly influence on his or her students.  

Are you able to volunteer?

 Thank God for Christian doctors and nurses in hospitals and for nursing home workers, and hospice workers who as they do their work,  patiently and tenderly bringing God’s love to fearful, despondent, suffering patients. Are you available for God to use as a  volunteer? 

Smile when you answer your door!

 Thank God for the person who disturbs your privacy by knocking on your front door to sell you something or try to convince you of his beliefs.  Treat him kindly and offer him a Gospel tract or introduce him to this web site. 

Our Fulltime Business is to be an Ambassador of Christ

 Paul tells us that in II Corinthians 5:20-21.  Every moment we are in the presence of others: whether shopping, working, walking, standing in an elevator with others, in public transportation, on vacation, visiting in a hospital, at school, or wherever we are; we ought to be aware of the fact that if we are Christians, we are Ambassadors for Christ. That’s why the way we live our lives is so vital.  We must reflect Christ to others.  We must be looking for ways to introduce Christ to others.  It is our responsibility, it is our business of taking the message of reconciliation to those who do not know Christ.  Read it again and master the message of II Corinthians 5:20-21. Use your computer to evangelize the lost and to encourage and strengthen Christians in the Word.  One simple way to do this is to forward this web site to others.  Ezekiel 3:18-21 was a sober challenge to the Children of Israel.  It is also a sober challenge to every Christian of the responsibility we have towards those around us. 

Remember, your primary business as a Christian is to live for Christ’s glory twenty-four hours a day. If others respect and admire your kindness and genuineness, they are going to be more open to know the Christ you reflect. 

April 2, 2006 Posted by | America | Comments Off

For God and Country

Jesus’ Kingdom is a heavenly kingdom. He spoke of it in John 18:36 at His mock trial before Pilate.  His life on earth was Heaven-centered on doing His Father’s will.

Jesus was also a Roman citizen by birth. In fact,  His mother, Mary,  and step-father, Joseph, were doing their civic duty by going to Bethlehem to be registered for Roman taxation. Palestine was part of the Roman Empire.  While there, Jesus was born in a stable because there was no room in the inn.  Thirty  years later that same Roman Empire would give orders for Jesus’ crucifixion. 

Jesus also taught  others to pay their taxes. Matthew 22:17-21.  As an Israelite, He also  paid the temple tax and taught others to fulfill this responsibility; although in Matthew 17:24-27 we see His humor in handling this responsibility.  

As Jesus, so we Christians have a dual responsibilities and privileges  as citizens of Heaven, as well  as citizens of our nation. 

CITIZENS OF HEAVEN 

Two thousand years earlier God called Abraham , the Father of the Jews, to go to a land that God would give him forever.  Abraham went in obedience to God, dwelling in tents in his Promised  Land with his son, Isaac and grandson, Jacob,  as pilgrims and strangers. Somehow Abraham understood his eternal purpose and that His eternal Home was Heaven.  See Hebrews 11:8-10 

So we as Christian citizens of our nation, understand that our citizenship is in Heaven.  We live in this land, understanding this is only temporary.  Our eternal Home is in Heaven.  Philippians 3:20-21 and Ephesians 2:18-19 speak of our Heavenly citizenship which far transcends our earthly citizenship. Our Heavenly citizenship unites us in spite of  our differences of races and nationality.  That Heavenly citizenship is being lived out in churches now around the world.  It will continue perfectly in Heaven throughout eternity. 

Jesus In John 17:14-23 prayed for His Church that though we live as citizens in  earthly nations, we would not forget our far greater privilege and responsibility  as citizens of Heaven.  It is our desire as Heavenly citizens living in this world as citizens of our native lands, to live in such a way that the unconverted world will listen to our message and see Christ in our lives and join us in Christ’s Kingdom.   

OUR RESPONSIBILITIES AS AMERICAN CITIZENS 

Though we magnify our  Heavenly citizenship we are very much aware that we still live in earthly bodies in earthly political units known as nations. We don’t belittle or ignore our humanness. We take care of our bodies. We enjoy our family relationships and we  enjoy fellowship. We are rightfully proud and rejoice in our American citizenship and the Christian foundation upon which our nation was built. We don’t belittle our nationality.   

As Christians, we are very much aware that to continue to enjoy our freedoms and  privileges as Americans, we  must also bear our civic  responsibilities as citizens of our nation.  The Bible teaches us: 

To pray for our leaders.  I Tim. 2:1-4    

To respect our leaders. Rom. 13:1- 5

To pay our taxes   Rom. 13:6-7

To enjoy and take full advantage of our privileges and rights as citizens. 

The Apostle Paul did that.  In Acts 25 it tells us how he appealed to his rights as a citizen of the
Roman Empire for protection by appealing to Caesar. He appealed to government to  protect him from the Jewish leaders  wanting to kill him.
 

As Christians, we are instrumental in blessing our very secular, anti-Christian nation. We understand Ps. 33:12  “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord”   

How do we bless our nation?1. We seek to win the lost to Christ.2. Many Christians enter  military service to make a difference  and to protect our nation. 3. Though we are warned in Scripture to avoid seeking great things for ourselves, some of us ought to be seeking God’s will about running for political positions as  God fearing office holders. 

Look at a few biblical examples of outstanding political leaders. 

Joseph, a young man, became Prime Minister of Egypt. God took him through some very painful and discouraging circumstances.  Without seeking any fame or glory for himself, God brought him to his high office. God gave him wisdom to prepare for famine that would affect Palestine as well as Egypt. God used him to bring blessing to his family, as well as to the world. 

Daniel is another young Israelite man who through suffering as a slave of Babylon, influenced emperors of
Babylon and later Persia. Note in Daniel 1:9 his character as a young man.
 

Nehemiah, another Israelite slave,  was a servant, a  cupbearer of the  Persian Emperor,  Artaxerxes. Read the book of Nehemiah for a wonderful story of how God blessed Nehemiah and of how God caused Artaxerxes to help Nehemiah rebuild the ruined city of Jerusalem.  

The book of Esther tells the intriguing story of beautiful Godly Israelite woman, Esther, who became the wife of the Persian Emperor, Ahasuerus. Through her position she was able to save the Jews from destruction by an evil man, Haman.  Esther’s uncle Mordecai, made an astute statement to his niece, “Who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”  

Seek to serve 

Let us as Christians not seek fame or fortune, but let us prepare ourselves and be available for God to use: wherever He wants to use us.  For some it may be political.  God has a prepared place for a prepared person. God may open the door for you to public  service  in the legislative, judicial or executive branches of government. Why not you? 

Remember, Christ’s plan for us is not to whisk us out of this sinful world system right now, but to use us to glorify Himself within the world system. Read His intercessory prayer for His own in John 17.  No doubt, that’s the same concern He has for us today as He intercedes for us in Heaven.  

OUR PURPOSE AS CITIZENS OF OUR NATION 

God’s purpose for us is that we might be a blessing to our nation.  According to  II Chronicles 7:14 God blesses a nation through His people.  We Christians are called to lives a righteous life. Christians, don’t blame the heathen for our ungodly nation. When Christians are right with God,  He blesses our  nation. When Christians are not right with God, He curses our nation.  That principle was true for Israel in Bible times and it is true for us today, no matter where we live.    

Proverbs 14:34  teaches us that Righteousness exalts a nation.  Unsaved people are not righteous.  Only Christians can live righteous lives.  The responsibility for our nation rests on us as Christians.  God has us in our nation to bless it  and make a difference.  Not only will He bless our nation, but Psalm 67:1-7 teaches us that He will bless all the nations of the world through us. How do you like that for responsibility?   America is a prime example of a nation that was founded by godly pioneers. For over two centuries we have brought blessing to the world.  May God help us as Christians to walk closely with Him and may He continue to use us the bless our nation and the world.  Satan and God are in a continual battle and that battle is being played out on the political scene.  May God help us as Christians to confess our sins and seek God’s face and turn from our wicked ways.  He promises to hear our prayers and heal our land.  Only as Christians are right with God can He bless America.  The alternative is unthinkable; perhaps demotion to the rank of a third world nation or perhaps oblivion.

April 1, 2006 Posted by | America | Comments Off

Justice

Thank God for human government. Thank God for our police officers and our military personnel who risk their lives daily to protect us from those who would do us harm.  Thank God for just judges who see to it that justice is served in the courts and who are more concerned with the rights of victims than the rights of criminals.  May God increase their numbers. 

SHAMEFUL INJUSTICE

Shame on a judicial system that perverts justice by accepting bribes and pay-offs. Shame on a system that allows felons back on the streets to commit further crimes.  Shame on a system that would free murderers, rapists and other violent  criminals on bail. What a terrible injustice and insult that is to victims and society in general.

CAPITAL PUNISHMENT

The only true so-called closure for violent crimes is for the State to avenge victims by seeing to it that such criminals are punished according to the law.  God commanded back in Noah’s day, long before Moses and the Ten Commandments,  “Whoso sheds blood, by man ( by human government) shall his blood be shed, for   in the image of God made He man.”  Genesis 9:6   Moses  had much to say  about capital punishment  as he gave God’s  Law in  Exodus 21 & 22.

GOD’S SERVANTS WHO CARRY GUNS

The Apostle Paul teaches by inspiration of God in Romans 13 that human government is God’s servant to protect citizens from foreign and domestic enemies.  He teaches that the police officer who carries a gun is acting in his capacity as God’s servant.  He teaches that the purpose of the justice system of the State is primarily punishment and vengeance; not rehabilitation.

REHABILITATION

No one is against rehabilitating criminals;  but that is not the primary purpose of prisons.  Some prisoners will be rehabilitated.  Other’s won’t.  Actually only God can rehabilitate a felon and that is through God’s Word working in his heart.  Only when the heart is changed, can the prison inmate truly be rehabilitated.

PERSONAL VENGEANCE

God’s Word also teaches that individuals are not to take personal vengeance into their own hands.  Justice and vengeance are to be left to the State to carry out. Romans 12:17-21.

SOLEMN RESPONSIBILITY

Kings, presidents, governors and all in executive authority have the solemn responsibility under God to see that justice is carried out.  In  II Samuel 23:3 King David spoke by inspiration of God, ” He that ruleth over men MUST be just, ruling in the fear of God.”  Rulers, as well as judges,  must one day answer to God for their administration of justice.

Thank God for God-fearing men and women in high office who take their responsibilities under God seriously.  Because we live in a sinful society, we can never expect total, perfect justice until Jesus returns to reign as King of  Kings and Lord of Lords.  The Bible is filled with prophecies about this coming reign.  Some of the outstanding passages on this are Psalm 2;  Psalm 72; Isaiah 11:1-9;  Isaiah 35;  Zechariah 14;  and Revelation 19-20.

PATRIOTIC CHRISTIANS

In the meantime, as we live our lives in this sin-darkened world, let us as Christian citizens pray for our political leaders as we are taught in I Timothy 2:1-4 and let us vote for principled, God-fearing men and women to carry out their responsibilities under God.  Let us be used of God to win the lost and ease the sufferings of injustice all around us and let us each learn  “to do justly, and to love mercy and to walk humbly with our God.”  Micah 6:8   That is the most patriotic thing we can do as Christian citizens.

March 30, 2006 Posted by | America | Comments Off

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