Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Supreme Court

Good Afternoon...

In recent days, Justice David Souter of the United States Supreme Court, announced his retirement...the President, eagar to make his mark on the Court (as all Presidents are) has named as his choice to succeed Souter, Judge Sonia Sotomayor of the 2nd Court of Appeals in New York...She was enthusiastically endorsed by the two current Senators from that state...Now, in considering who should or should not be appointed, we, conservative Christian believers, must keep in mind that the President is allowed to nominate whomever he pleases...we certainly could not expect the President to nominate someone like Chief Justice Roberts or another Justice Anthony Scalia...we must understand that coming in, this President will appoint Judges whom he believes will be just as liberal as he is and one who holds as much disdain for the U.S. Constitution as he does...he made it clear leading up to this nomination that he wanted someone who will have "empathy" in making decisions for all those whose voices are not being heard...the problem with that line of thinking Mr. President is that we are a nation of laws and the law is supposed to be color blind and not show any bias towards anyone...this brings me back to Judge Sotomayor...she is quoted as saying that she would hope that a Laitina Woman, with the life experiences that she has had, would come to a better conclusion than a white male who has not lived that life...I can only imagine what kind of uproar we would hear if a white male judge had said the same thing about his qualifications!
I imagine that Judge Sotomayor will be confirmed as our friendly Republican Senators will seat on their hands as usual and watch this travesty play out...We can only hope that what happened to President George H.W. Bush when he appointed Souter happens to Obama when naming his replacement....

Even So, Come Quickly Lord Jesus!

Monday, May 18, 2009

The President & Abortion...

Good Morning!

Yesterday, the President of the United States, Barrack Obama, was the invited speaker at the commencement exercises at Notre Dame University. There was quite a bit of contraversy surrounding this choice for this honor at this school. Never-the-less, the President accepted the invitation. There was, as a result, a number of protesters to his being there and receiving an honarary doctorate.

My purpose here is to look at several things the President said and then offer commentary:

The Prseident said:

"Unfortunately, finding that common ground -- recognizing that our fates are tied up, as Dr. King said, in a "single garment of destiny" -- is not easy. Part of the problem, of course, lies in the imperfections of man _ our selfishness, our pride, our stubbornness, our acquisitiveness, our insecurities, our egos; all the cruelties large and small that those of us in the Christian tradition understand to be rooted in original sin. We too often seek advantage over others. We cling to outworn prejudice and fear those who are unfamiliar. Too many of us view life only through the lens of immediate self-interest and crass materialism; in which the world is necessarily a zero-sum game. The strong too often dominate the weak, and too many of those with wealth and with power find all manner of justification for their own privilege in the face of poverty and injustice. And so, for all our technology and scientific advances, we see around the globe violence and want and strife that would seem sadly familiar to those in ancient times."

To say that "too many of us view life only through the lens of immediate self-interest and crass materialism" and then advocate abortion on demand for any reason seems contradictory. That is essentially what abortion is all about...Most abortions are for the convenience of the one seeking an abortion...yet the President stands with those who would have unfetterred abortion and has even exported this over-seas by sending U.S. Tax-Payer money to support it...

"The soldier and the lawyer may both love this country with equal passion, and yet reach very different conclusions on the specific steps needed to protect us from harm. The gay activist and the evangelical pastor may both deplore the ravages of HIV/AIDS, but find themselves unable to bridge the cultural divide that might unite their efforts. Those who speak out against stem cell research may be rooted in admirable conviction about the sacredness of life, but so are the parents of a child with juvenile diabetes who are convinced that their son's or daughter's hardships can be relieved."

In the area of stem-cell research, embryonic stem cells have never shown to be an answer in fighting disease whereas, adult stem cells have...

"As I considered the controversy surrounding my visit here, I was reminded of an encounter I had during my Senate campaign, one that I describe in a book I wrote called "The Audacity of Hope." A few days after I won the Democratic nomination, I received an e-mail from a doctor who told me that while he voted for me in the primary, he had a serious concern that might prevent him from voting for me in the general election. He described himself as a Christian who was strongly pro-life, but that's not what was preventing him from voting for me.
What bothered the doctor was an entry that my campaign staff had posted on my Web site -- an entry that said I would fight "right-wing ideologues who want to take away a woman's right to choose." The doctor said that he had assumed I was a reasonable person, but that if I truly believed that every pro-life individual was simply an ideologue who wanted to inflict suffering on women, then I was not very reasonable. He wrote, "I do not ask at this point that you oppose abortion, only that you speak about this issue in fair-minded words."
Fair-minded words.
After I read the doctor's letter, I wrote back to him and thanked him. I didn't change my position, but I did tell my staff to change the words on my Web site. And I said a prayer that night that I might extend the same presumption of good faith to others that the doctor had extended to me. Because when we do that -- when we open our hearts and our minds to those who may not think like we do or believe what we do -- that's when we discover at least the possibility of common ground.
That's when we begin to say, "Maybe we won't agree on abortion, but we can still agree that this is a heart-wrenching decision for any woman to make, with both moral and spiritual dimensions. So let's work together to reduce the number of women seeking abortions by reducing unintended pregnancies, and making adoption more available, and providing care and support for women who do carry their child to term. Let's honor the conscience of those who disagree with abortion, and draft a sensible conscience clause, and make sure that all of our health care policies are grounded in clear ethics and sound science, as well as respect for the equality of women."

The President speaks of "fair-minded words"...that we can find common ground...there is no common ground...we believe that abortion is murder and the President and those who push for policies like his do not...How can we reduce the number of abortions when you Mr. President advocate making it available under any circumstances? How can we reduce the number of abortions when you Mr. President promise to sign legislation that will over-turn every abortion limitation to include the abhorrent procedure known as Partial-Birth-Abortion? Or when you advocate that a child that survives a botched abortion should be left to die so as not to interfere with a woman's right to choose? He also tells us that "we can agree that this is a heart-wrenching decision"...DUH! Of course this is a heart-wrenching decision! This is so because a woman is contemplating destroying and murdering the growing life of her CHILD within her!

The fact is that the President holds the power...he has the congress firmly within his grasp and the time for payback to all his supporters has come...the problem is that there are human lives in the balance...human lives that will be murdered for the sake of convenience...God help us...

One last statement about the speech. The President claims that maybe these graduates will help us out with the problem of climate change:

"We must decide how to save God's creation from a changing climate that threatens to destroy it."

He says that he is a Christian and I am reminded of God's own word on the subject from Genesis 8:22, "While the earth remains,Seedtime and harvest,Cold and heat,Winter and summer,And day and night Shall not cease."

Either we believe God or...Al Gore?

Friday, May 8, 2009

Who is Jesus?

Good Morning...many in our world today think that they know Jesus. The question of course is do they know the REAL Jesus! Jack Kelly has written a wonderful piece about Jesus that I would love to share with you today:

Seven Men Named Jesus


A recent poll claimed that about half of all professing Christians don’t believe that Jesus is God, or that the Holy Spirit and Satan even exist. Smaller but still significant percentages don’t believe that Jesus lived a sin free life or that He is the only way to salvation. This has prompted questions about whether this means they aren’t really saved. I remembered an article on this subject that I wrote a number of years ago and in response to these questions I have updated and expanded it. I believe it will explain what you have to believe about Jesus to be saved. Let’s read it.

The Other Six

Ever suspect while talking with someone that you may have a mutual friend? Then as you get further into the conversation you realize that you are describing two different people who happen to have the same name? So it is with discussions of Jesus. The name’s the same but the descriptions vary widely. Over the years I’ve collected numerous descriptions of men named Jesus. Which one do you know?
First there’s the Jesus of Judaism. He’s known in Jewish writings as the illegitimate son of Miriam (Mary). He lived in the first century CE (they don’t use AD) and led people away from main stream Judaism into a cult. His followers were first called Netzerim (people of the branch) and later Christians. In his name Jews have been persecuted unmercifully over the centuries. Jews who admit to believing He was their Messiah are often considered dead to their families. Jews don’t believe in a second coming because they don’t believe there’s been a first one.
Then you have the Jesus of Islam. He was a prophet and teacher on a par with Mohammed. His role was to help prepare people for the great leader from Allah coming at the end of time to judge the world. He was born of a virgin but was not the son of God because the Quran says “God begets not, nor is he begotten.” He didn’t die for the sins of the people because in Islam salvation comes from good works. Neither was he resurrected. Instead, in a time of confusion God took him live into heaven and someone else was crucified. He will return at the end of the age to defeat the anti-Christ, call everyone to Islam, and prepare the world for judgment.
The Jesus of Mormonism is the spirit brother of Lucifer. Both are sons of a god who was once a man and one of his many wives. This Jesus became a human as the result of a sexual union between the Mormon god and an unmarried Jewish girl named Mary. He’s often called the Savior but never Lord, because although he’s one of god’s sons, he’s not god. If he determines that you’ve done everything you possibly can to earn your own salvation and are still short, he’ll graciously make up the difference. He’ll return at the End of the Age, having protected his saints through the time of Great Tribulation, to set up his kingdom.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses have a Jesus too. He’s a son of Jehovah, but He’s not God. Rather, he was a perfect man just like Adam originally was. Before he became a man he was the Archangel Michael, who The Witnesses believe to be Jehovah’s first created being. Just believing in Jesus is not enough to save us. we also have to become a Jehovah’s Witness, be baptized, and obey God’s laws all of our life to prove ourselves worthy. Their Jesus wasn’t physically resurrected, but came back to life in Spirit form. He returned to Earth in Spirit form in 1914 and will become a physical being again at Armageddon.
Then there’s the Jesus of the liberal denominations. He’s a first century man who lived an exemplary life of such gentleness and grace that it was almost as if he was God. He’ll see that everyone who joins their denominations gets accepted into heaven whether they’re born again or not. Some proponents of liberal theology claim that he’ll also see that everyone who was sincere in whatever other religion they practiced will get to heaven too. For the most part, liberal denominations don’t believe in the literal fulfillment of End Time events. For many, the 2nd Coming happened to each person when they first believed in Jesus.
The New Age Jesus is really one of the oldest. He originally appeared in first century Gnosticism. This Jesus was a man who like 40 other “ascended masters” holds the key to knowledge (gnosis) that when learned will bring about the next phase of human evolution, a spiritual growth that will finally make peace on earth possible. He didn’t die for our sins because there’s no need for us to be saved.
You’ll find variations on these six themes in nearly every major religion and cult around today. It seems every body wants you to think they know a man named Jesus, even if they have to redefine him to suit their beliefs.

The Real Jesus
But there is one more man named Jesus. He is not a created being. On the contrary He is our Creator. As Paul wrote in Colossians 1:16, By him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He’s not an angel and he’s not a mere man, because He created both. The archangel Michael might be the first created being, but if he is, Jesus is the one who created him. And Lucifer may have many brothers, but if he does, Jesus created them all.
This is the Jesus of the Bible. He claimed to be God in the form of man (John 10:30 and 14:9). Men who knew Him agreed. Paul taught the Deity of Jesus in Colossians 1:15-16. So did John (John 1:1-3). The writer of the Book of Hebrews also agreed (Hebr 1:3) and included a quote from Psalm 45:6-7 that shows God Himself addressing Jesus as God (Hebr 1:8). And this is not just a New Testament idea. In his prophecy of the Messiah’s birthplace, Micah said He was an eternal being whose goings forth were from days of eternity. Literally from before time and perpetual. (Micah 5:2) He is the eternal God.
Here’s where your knowledge of Scripture becomes really important, because in order to be all the Bible claims, Jesus has to be both 100% man and 100% God. If He isn’t a man He couldn’t have been made like us in every way and suffered our temptations as Hebr. 2:17-18 claim; he couldn’t be our High Priest as Hebr. 4:14-15 assert; and he can’t be our redeemer because he wouldn’t be our next of kin as required by Lev. 25:47-48 and explained in Rom 5:18-19. If He isn’t God He couldn’t be King David’s Lord (Matt 22:41-45) He couldn’t be sinless (Rom 3:20) and He couldn’t be our Savior (Mark 2:6-12 and 1 Ptr 1: 18-21).

Is This a Cult?

Three things distinguish Christian cult beliefs from orthodox theology. The cults deny the doctrine of salvation by grace alone. You have to earn at least part of the salvation they offer. They also deny the notion of eternal punishment for sin. Everyone goes to some kind of Heaven. And most importantly, they deny the deity of Jesus. They portray Him as a great man and role model; a great teacher, a prophet, even a social revolutionary, but certainly not God.
In truth Jesus was all of that. But He was also much more. He was God in the form of man; the Father dwelling in the Son (Col 1:19). To think of Jesus as anyone other than God is to reject the truth concerning Him revealed through out His Word, and to put yourself at risk of trusting in the wrong Jesus for your eternal destiny. The Jesus of the Bible is the only one of the seven men named Jesus who is able to save you. Selah 05-02-09