where religion and politics meet

Everyone has a worldview. A worldview is what one believes about life: what is true, what is false, what is right, what is wrong, what are the rules, are there any rules, what is the meaning of life, what is important, what is not.

If a worldview includes a god/God, it is called a religion. If a bunch of people have the same religion, they give it a name.

Countries also have a worldview, a way of looking at life that directs government policies and laws and that contributes significantly to the culture. Ours used to be Christianity. Now it is secularism, which is practical atheism.

Some of us are trying to engage the government, the culture, and the people who live here to see life again from a Christian perspective and to show how secularism is both inadequate and just plain wrong.

A religion is not a culture, though it creates one. It is not what you prefer, like your taste in music or your favorite movie. It is what you believe to be true. Because it deals with things like God, much of its contents is not subject to the scientific method, but the reasons why one chooses to believe in God or a particular religion certainly demand serious investigation and critical thinking.

Every human being has the duty to search for and learn the truth about life. Education and science used to be valuable tools in this search, but science has chosen to answer the foundational questions without accepting the possibility of any supernatural causes, and education no longer considers the search to be necessary or worthwhile.

poligion: 1) the proper synthesis of religion and politics 2) the realization, belief, or position that politics and religion cannot be separated or compartmentalized, that a person’s religion invariably affects one’s political decisions and that political decisions invariably stem from one’s worldview, which is what a religion is.

If you are new to this site, I would encourage you to browse through the older articles. They deal with a lot of the more basic issues,

For now I want to focus my writing now articles specifically addressed to Christians. So most of my new posts will be on my other website listed below. I will continue to write and post short responses to newspaper columns and letters and even other articles as the inspiration hits me.

Visit my other websites theimportanceofhealing blogspot.com where I talk about healing and my book of the same name and LarrysBibleStudies.blogspot.com where I am posting all my other Bible studies. Follow this link to my videos on youtube:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCb-RztuRKdCEQzgbhp52dCw

If you want to contact me, email is best: lacraig1@sbcglobal.net

Thank you.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

It’s Time for a Second American Revolution

It’s time for a second American Revolution.  Wait.  Let me correct that.  It’s past time.  If the Founding Fathers were alive today, we would already be either in a second revolution or it would have been over.

Why do I say this?

We need to look first at what they said at the time of the first one, beginning with the Declaration of Independence. 

“We hold these truths to be self-evident:That all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; that,

to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men,

deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed;

that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends,
it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and

organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.  Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that

mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism,

it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.

Such has been the patient sufferance of these colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former systems of government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these states. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.”

The Founders said that we have rights as human beings given to us by God which include life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Government exists to see that we have and enjoy these rights, and governments derive their power from the consent of the people. 

When government works against those purposes, the people have a right, even a duty, to alter or abolish it.

But wait.  Isn’t this what elections are for?

The election process has become so corrupt in our country as to often dilute if not thwart the will of the people:

1)         First, representative districts have become so gerrymandered that there are few choices for many political offices (most, in my state) and the same people who stay in office become less responsive to the needs and wants of the people as they rely more on certain people to help them stay in office.   
2)         The number of illegal immigrants is so high that their numbers inflate population numbers to skew the number of representatives a state is legally allowed to have, shifting political power to states more likely to favor a role of government that is more actively involved in the lives of its people, in a word, socialism.  This is contrary to our Founders’ vision of liberty and pursuit of happiness, because it involves the government controlling more of your labor and wealth to use as it sees fit rather than you doing that yourself.  
            This also gives a state more electoral votes than it should have in Presidential elections. 
3)         Political parties, while an early feature in American history, greatly limit the choices for political office and essentially block any person not in those parties from being elected.  Having a third person in most elections allows a person to win an election with less than a majority of the vote, usually giving the election to the candidate of the other major political party who should not have won.
4)         Our government has created so much government dependency that it is impossible for people to vote to end it when they are the recipients.
5)         We have lost our moral compass so that parties will do whatever is necessary to win an election.  The city I grew up in had (has) a motto: Vote early and vote often.  Many states and cities are so welcoming to illegal immigrants and so resistant to means of safeguarding the integrity of elections, it would be naïve if you thought illegal residents are not voting in numbers that are significant.
6)         Media have become so lax and useless in their role as informants of the public that they make it necessary for people seeking political office to raise enormous amounts of money to get their message out.  This ends up giving us politicians who owe a lot of very rich people a lot of very large favors

And when these politicians do get elected, they find a government so unwieldy that gradual change won’t help it.  It’s like a person so obese, he is confined to bed.  To try to reduce his weight enough so he can resume normal activity solely by diet would take years, if it is at all possible.  His metabolism has become so slow, he would probably die before achieving any kind of mobility.  This person would require radical surgery to remove an enormous amount of his bulk.  I don’t even know if that is possible.  Can you imagine eliminating a million government employees?

It’s true that our Founders wanted to make change a slow process in government.  That helps to prevent sudden mass swings on government policies based on public emotions, like we saw happen with the gay marriage issue.  We’ve lost a lot of that slow process.  Courts can now change major issues overnight.  Doesn’t matter what the people want.

But after several hundred years, small things have become big things.  Small changes over time become big changes.  But small changes are easier to accept when they occur.  Incremental changes in the same direction over generations will produce huge changes, but newer generations won’t know what was lost, how far we have come as a nation, or how it was supposed to look in the first place.  We keep getting ‘a new normal’, and only the older people know what the old normal was.

One example is that of government agencies.  Originally all lawmaking was to be done by Congress.  With the creation of all these various agencies, thousands of regulations are made every year, which have the impact of laws.  They just don’t call them laws.  Otherwise, people might wake up and realize what’s happening.

Another example is government assistance.  We all think that having some kind of safety net for people is a good concept.  But the number of people or households who aren’t receiving some kind of government assistance keeps shrinking, and the government has to borrow money it can’t pay back to pay for it.  If you talk about cutting some of this, be prepared for being portrayed as a heartless SOB.  But talking about cutting these benefits rarely happens, because politicians are afraid of losing these votes.

All these things have been going on for years, starting small and incrementally increasing in size and scope, burdening our nation with debt and diminishing the freedom and wealth of those who live here.  But like the frog being slowly boiled to death as the temperature of the water rises, those who call for major changes are labelled extremists and out-of-touch with the national consensus.

We all know these are problems, but at least they seem to be errors of judgment, natural human tendencies and faults.  Decisions made for short term gain but failing to see the long term outcomes. 

But what about government actions that are more intentional?

It’s Time for a Second American Revolution Part 2

The Founders wrote something else besides the Declaration of Independence: the Constitution.  We hear a lot about whether things are constitutional or not, but we miss the overall goal of the thing.  That will tell us whether we are even heading in the right direction at all.  The answer to this is found in the Preamble to the Constitution:

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

All those other problems of government can be excused to an extent, but this is where we can see the real intent of government.  I believe this is where our Founders would take their stand and say, “No more.”

The first purpose of our government as listed in our founding document is to “form a more perfect union.” 

It would be helpful before looking at the role of government to look a bit at some background.

When the court called supreme removed religion (Christianity) from our schools and our public life, something that had been a part of them for almost 200 years before our nation’s founding and 170 years after its founding, something had to be found to replace it. 

A religion is not simply a system of one’s personal beliefs about God.  It’s an all-compassing worldview that describes all of life.  Nations have this as well as individuals.  So while not everybody in our country was a Christian, Christianity was the worldview under which our country ran and maintained itself.  That is why Christmas could be a national holiday, why we have a Thanksgiving, why stores and businesses were closed on Sundays for most of our history, why the Ten Commandments were posted in schools, courtrooms and government buildings all across the country, and why there were so few or no government assistance programs until the 1930s.  Churches and Christian organization did all that for free, i.e. free of public taxpayer dollars.

When that court said in 1947 that government cannot “aid religion,” it eventually removed all mention of God from our schools and public life.  A few things remained like the motto on our coins and a few words in the Pledge of Allegiance, but education became completely secular.  Everything happened in life without God causing it, motivating it, guiding it, blessing it, and there certainly was nothing that He commanded people to do so that they knew how to live. 

So a new moral code and worldview were needed to fill the void.  It was obviously secularism, but there was no complete moral system yet.  It had to be made up as we went along. 

The Ten Commandments were reduced to five guiding inviolable rules: multi-culturalism, tolerance, equality, fairness, and diversity.  Only tolerance was the responsibility of individuals.  The others were the responsibility of government.  But you had to believe in all of these to be an accepted member of society.  If you rejected any of these, you are deemed as racist, phobic, bigoted, extreme, right-wing, or any combination of these.

Again, these changes happened gradually.  With each passing generation, people knew less and less about our founding documents and what concepts like church and state meant.  So people learned to live with these things.

But something changed.   A new attitude of government developed.  It is now:

We know better than you.  We will tell you what to do, we will do what we want, and you will like it.

So go back to the Preamble.  The first goal of government mentioned is to form a more perfect union.

And just how do we do that?  For years the government has been pushing diversity.  I don’t want to push exact word meanings here, but diversity means “unlike in kind or character” and “implies both distinctness and marked contrast such diverse interests as dancing and football>.”

I’m not talking about, say, a job field that is almost entirely homogenous in its work force because people in that work force have sought to exclude others who are different.  I would submit it is wrong to lower any kinds of standards for those jobs where we get less qualified people just so we can achieve some kind of diversity.

But the kind of diversity I am talking about has primarily to do with cultures, where all cultures are considered as equal, and there is nothing unique or better about American culture that is worth keeping or protecting.  So there is no reason to favor or not favor any groups of people from coming to our country.  In fact those with cultures most like ours are almost barred from entering, and those with the greatest differences are not only preferred but sought out.

Our Founders wanted and expected and formed our government the way they did because they wanted the nation united.  How is a nation to be perfectly united when its people can’t even agree on the most basic questions about life?  Married people have a hard time achieving a perfect union, and they enter that relationship willingly and after having committed themselves to each other in love.  Asking or expecting people to unite who don’t share the same culture or values is asking quite a bit.  I don’t believe a nation has ever done that before.

The government is supposed to make things easier for us, not harder.  It is not supposed to force things on its people that they naturally see problems with.  That is not the role of government.

The Preamble goes on: to insure [sic] domestic tranquility. 

Do you know what tranquility means?  Freedom from disturbance or agitation.  It is not the government’s job to force things on the American people and tell us to like it.  No, they would say we are to tolerate it.  Or, put up with it.

The latest of a long series of government imposed changes to our country is its immigration policies.  It is intent on bringing into our country as many people as possible with apparently the greatest cultural differences.   Immigrants from countries that helped build our country are routinely denied entry in favor of people the most disparate.

And now the government wants to bring in hundreds of thousands of refugees from a culture as far different from ours as any can be.  These same peoples have been migrating to Europe for generations now.  While there are exceptions, they are not assimilating.  They want to create in Europe the life they had back home.  They want Europe to become like them.  When their numbers are large enough, they will vote their way of life into existence, and you will learn to like it or live with it.  Did you know that Christmas is very offensive to them?  Not the part about exchanging gifts and having family over, but the part about the birth of Jesus, the Son of God.             

In the past, we made all of our goods here, so we could absorb new immigrants readily, because as the numbers of people grew, so did the jobs.   But our government essentially drove the jobs overseas, and now most of the new people coming here will be on public assistance for years.  Paid for with borrowed money that we will never pay off.

Sure, we have always been a nation of immigrants.  European immigrants.  Was that because we were racists?  No.  That’s because it was Europeans who founded our country, and they thought it wise to preserve the make-up of our country. 

European countries were all Christian nations, or what could also be described as Western Civilization.  Our schools used to all teach classes on Western Civilization.  There were reasons why science developed in the West, and human rights, and property rights, and immense wealth.   Even the poorest people in the United States had more than almost anyone else in the world.

The main difference between the United States and Europe is that the United States had the concept of equality of people and did not have a state church.  Europe had a noble class from which they had their kings, queens, and royalty.

Does this mean that these other peoples cannot assimilate, or melt in our melting pot?  No, but it does mean that previously there was a lot less to assimilate and that they were more likely to do so. 

But we also had a common all-encompassing worldview that covered all of life.  And we taught this to our children in our schools, and it guided our public life.

Our Founders broke from the British government, because, in a word, it was not protecting and promoting our “safety and happiness.”  Got that?  They expected the government to contribute to the happiness of its people.  And that was worth fighting for.

Government is supposed to work to form a more perfect union, ensure domestic tranquility, promote the general welfare. and secure “the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.”  Our government is hellbent on doing everything possible to divide our nation, ensure unrest and discord, promote the welfare of everybody else over its own people, and cripple our posterity with an unconscionable amount of debt.

Our government is miserably failing the task given to it by our Founders.  Maybe that is worded wrong.  That would assume they are even trying.  If the Founders were alive today, they would be thoroughly fed up to the point of abolishing our government and starting over.  Unfortunately, there aren’t enough people in leadership positions today who have the knowledge and wisdom of our Founders to make it right.  And the people don’t have the moral and Christian values to have the self-restraint to shun government assistance and the knowledge and strength to debunk secularism, restore a Christian worldview, and correct the false narratives as to our nation’s history. 


In other words, we need a revolution, but we don’t have the wherewithal right now to make things better.  We need a revival among the Christians, an active engagement of them in public life, like they used to do before government made much of it illegal, and, lastly, we need an education in American history so that we really know what our country is all about.

A response to the plea for Syrian refugees

The United States is $19,000,000,000,000 in debt.  It plans to house, clothe, feed, provide medical insurance for, and further subsidize thousands of people for about 5 years.  If you were broke, would you borrow thousands of dollars that you could never pay back to feed homeless people?

The House of Representatives passed a bill overwhelmingly to stop taking in more refugees until they were assured that they were screened better.  There is a very good chance there are people among them who want to kill large numbers of our people like in Paris.  Would you open your house to homeless people when the police were warning everybody that a lot of criminals were posing as homeless people to gain access to people’s homes?

The House controls federal spending, but if the President rejects what the House offers, the government could shut down.  The House could fund everything in the world but this one program, the President could then refuse the whole thing.  This is wrong, but we have gotten so screwed up, it could happen.  So then the government would shut down, and whose fault would it be?

The President would blame those crazy Tea Party extremists in the House who are putting partisan politics over the welfare of the country, and the media would buy that and tell everybody that the Republican Party is run by a bunch of crazies who oppose everything the President wants, partly because he is black and they oppose everything he has ever done.  But also because there are a bunch of extremists that everybody needs to be aware of and get rid of.

As I said in my article, there are 55,000,000 refugees in the world today.  That doesn’t count all the people who are just dirt poor and who may just be dying early from starvation and disease.  So what’s the best way to help them?

Our country used to be the richest nation in the world.  After WW2, we began foreign aid programs to help people all over the world.  When our nation lost its Christian roots due to supreme court decisions, the country gradually adopted socialistic policies to replace the role of the church, and the country went into debt fast, and we now have more debt than any country in the world.  All this lowers the standard of living for everybody who lives here, and the economy could collapse impoverishing millions.

There are people who are using the ruse of helping people to keep borrowing and spending money to bring the downfall of our way of life.  A lot of people would contend that the best way to help people who are poor is to show them how to get rich.  Why did the United States become rich yet other nations much older than ours continued to stay poor?  They weren’t doing the things that we were doing.


But refugees?  What about all the Christian refugees who being driven out of Muslim countries and slaughtered if they stay?  Why aren’t we helping them?  They assimilate quite well in our society.  Muslims generally don’t, as evidenced by what is happening now all throughout Europe.  Take some time to watch the videos on youtube.  We are having a lot of people who came over years ago who are joining ISIS or other terror groups.  The Boston bombers were refugees who came over as children.  Muslim thinking doesn’t usually align very well in Western civilization.  There are exceptions of course, but we are inviting a hose of serious problems that we don’t need.  We could help millions of people who would pose almost no problems but we choose to help the ones with the highest risk.  Why?

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Compassion for refugees: a response to a Facebook post

The United States is $19,000,000,000,000 in debt.  It plans to house, clothe, feed, provide medical insurance for, and further subsidize thousands of people for about 5 years.  If you were broke, would you borrow thousands of dollars that you could never pay back to feed homeless people?

The House of Representatives passed a bill overwhelmingly to stop taking in more refugees until they were assured that they were screened better.  There is a very good chance there are people among them who want to kill large numbers of our people like in Paris.  Would you open your house to homeless people when the police were warning everybody that a lot of criminals were posing as homeless people to gain access to people’s homes?

The House controls federal spending, but if the President rejects what the House offers, the government could shut down.  The House could fund everything in the world but this one program, the President could then refuse the whole thing.  This is wrong, but we have gotten so screwed up, it could happen.  So then the government would shut down, and whose fault would it be?

The President would blame those crazy Tea Party extremists in the House who are putting partisan politics over the welfare of the country, and the media would buy that and tell everybody that the Republican Party is run by a bunch of crazies who oppose everything the President wants, partly because he is black and they oppose everything he has ever done.  But also because there are a bunch of extremists that everybody needs to be aware of and get rid of.

As I said in my article, there are 55,000,000 refugees in the world today.  That doesn’t count all the people who are just dirt poor and who may just be dying early from starvation and disease.  So what’s the best way to help them?

Our country used to be the richest nation in the world.  After WW2, we began foreign aid programs to help people all over the world.  When our nation lost its Christian roots due to supreme court decisions, the country gradually adopted socialistic policies to replace the role of the church, and the country went into debt fast, and we now have more debt than any country in the world.  All this lowers the standard of living for everybody who lives here, and the economy could collapse impoverishing millions.

There are people who are using the ruse of helping people to keep borrowing and spending money to bring the downfall of our way of life.  A lot of people would contend that the best way to help people who are poor is to show them how to get rich.  Why did the United States become rich yet other nations much older than ours continued to stay poor?  They weren’t doing the things that we were doing.


But refugees?  What about all the Christian refugees who being driven out of Muslim countries and slaughtered if they stay?  Why aren’t we helping them?  They assimilate quite well in our society.  Muslims generally don’t, as evidenced by what is happening now all throughout Europe.  Take some time to watch the videos on youtube.  We are having a lot of people who came over years ago who are joining ISIS or other terror groups.  The Boston bombers were refugees who came over as children.  Muslim thinking doesn’t usually align very well in Western civilization.  There are exceptions of course, but we are inviting a hose of serious problems that we don’t need.  We could help millions of people who would pose almost no problems but we choose to help the ones with the highest risk.  Why?

Monday, November 23, 2015

Taking in Refugees

The Sun-Times (Nov. 22) printed a long opinion piece that tried to make the case for accepting the Syrian refugees.  Turning the page in that same paper, we read that there are 55,000,000 refugees in the world today. 

So why the insistence on taking Syrian refugees?  Why the insistence on taking Muslim refugees?

These refugees are fleeing a civil war.  Christians are being driven out of Muslim lands, being tortured, crucified, beheaded by ISIS, risking imprisonment in other Muslim countries for the slightest or trumped up offenses.

They won’t go to these refugee camps, because they fear for their safety there.

Europe has been taking Muslims for years now, and it is about to break apart from the social division and unrest.  Watch some of the countless videos from Europe on youtube. 

Have we forgotten the purpose of our government?
“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, . . . , insure domestic Tranquility, . . . , promote the general Welfare, ….


This government is hellbent on doing everything possible to divide our nation, insure unrest and discord, and promote the welfare of everybody else over its own people.

Friday, November 20, 2015

a response to a newspaper letter regarding religion, terrorism, and the Constitution

A reader (November 20) asked and raised some questions that need to be answered.

The reader suspects “that what ISIS is doing in the name of Islam bears as much relation to the religious tenants [sic] as the man-in-the-moon does.”  I think what he means is that the violence that ISIS perpetrates has nothing to do with Islam.

USA today recently summarized all the worldwide terrorist attacks for the last month.  There were about 30 attacks killing hundreds of people, and they were all committed by Muslims.  It’s a logical fallacy to conclude that Islam caused all these terrorist attacks, but I think it is safe to assume that there must be something about that religion that so many people seem to abuse it and in extraordinary ways.  I think maybe somebody needs to research why so many of the world’s terrorists are Muslim.

The reader also repeats one of the biggest misunderstandings about our Constitution that gives our Founders a bad name.  He says that “the Founding Fathers . . . constitutionally established an entire race as being worth only two thirds as relevant as they themselves.”

Not quite.   Most of the people he is referring to here were slaves.  Those of that race who were not slaves were not counted as 3/5 like the rest.  And the reason why slaves were counted as 3/5 of other people was that slaves could not vote.  And to count slaves as full persons would give slave states a greater representation in government than they should have had.  That would have made it harder to end slavery in the first place.

To make slavery an issue at that time might have resulted in not one new nation but two.   But the South could have remained loyal to the Crown, and in that case the northern colonies probably wouldn’t have been able to win a war for independence by themselves.  So we would still be a colony of England.


The reader ends by remarking that “it is never wise to paint an entire race or religion with the same paint brush.”  The problem is that there are just too many instances of horrible things being done in the name of one particular religion that it seems naïve not to see a link here.

What Should We Think About Islam?

The United States is the midst of a debate about admitting Syrian refugees.  Related to this is also a debate about Islam itself. 

USA Today recently surveyed all the terrorist attacks worldwide over the course of a month, and there were about 30.  I believe all of them were by radical Islamists. 

We are constantly being told that this radicalism has nothing to do with Islam itself, and that we should welcome any non-radical Muslims to our country. 

How should we respond to this statement?

We have heard a lot of rhetoric on both sides of the issue.  I would like to present two points that I have not heard yet.

1)         If you want to see what true Islam is, I would say you need to go to a country that is entirely or majority Muslim.  There are 47 Muslim majority countries in the world.  Are there any of them that you would like to live in?  Especially if you are Christian.  Or Jewish.  Open Doors publishes a monthly list of the countries with the worst persecution of Christians.  This would be killings, imprisonment, torture, etc. merely for the fact of being Christian.  Thirty-seven of the top 50 are Muslim countries.  

I am guessing here, but I think the only reason the other ten countries didn't make the list is because there are too few Christians there to judge.  By the way, the Middle East was largely Christian until the rise of Islam.  No, they did not convert to Islam, at least willingly.  Most were either killed or just fled to other countries.  I suppose Mohammed was a radical and doesn't represent true Islam. 

Are we to assume that  all these countries don’t really represent Islam?  That they are aberrations?  Where are true Muslims to be found?  Are they only the ones who already are living or who want to live in our country?

I venture to say that if Jews compiled a similar list for hostility to Jews, or even a list of perpetrators of anti-Semitic violence, the vast majority of incidents would be caused by Muslims.
Any group of people living in our country could achieve majority status at some time.  What would our country look like as a majority Muslim country?  How much different would it be from the other 47 Muslim countries in the world?

2)         Muslims have been moving into Europe for several generations now.  How is that working out?  You need just go to youtube and you can find dozens, maybe hundreds of videos, from Europe documenting or telling of changes that you would not want if it were to happen here.  Many of the stories tell of violence.  Not merely crime but violence attributed to Islam.  Is this only committed by a radical fringe?   Then this fringe is too large to be called fringe.

But more importantly it shows that this radicalism, if you want to call it that, is inherent in the system.  While any particular Muslim can be nice, friendly, and a good neighbor and citizen, as their numbers increase, so do the number of those who are called ‘radicals.’ 

But isn’t this the same as saying that any time the population increases, the number of crimes increases proportionally?  Perhaps, but ordinary crime usually involves rapes, murders, and thefts motivated by personal greed, lust, or anger.  Certainly nobody wants any of these. 

But radical Islamic violence seeks the destruction of as many people as possible and not for personal motives but for the sake of the religion.  Misguided or not, once it takes root in a society it’s almost impossible to root out.  

Introducing Muslims into our society has put incredible costs on our law enforcement community as it tracks thousands of potential offenders waiting for them to offend.  Why would we want to do this?  There are millions of people who would like to come here where this wouldn’t be a risk.  Why would we want to jeopardize the lives of our own people?


Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Merry Christmas

It doesn’t matter whether you think Christmas is a celebration of the winter solstice or the birth of Jesus.  Christmas is a federal holiday in the United States.  It is the one day of the year when the country basically shuts down.  Almost all working people will get a day off from work with pay, regardless of your religion.  And most people, regardless of their religion, will spend the day with friends and family.  So I think it is entirely appropriate in any circumstance to wish anybody in the United States a Merry Christmas. 

American Foreign Policy and the Rise of Islamic Terrorism

A reader (November 17) lambasts American foreign policy in the Middle East but seems to forget why we got involved there in the first place: 9/11.  We made a lot of mistakes there, and I would list different ones than he did, basically because we assumed the people there were more like us than they are. 

Anyway, if we had never gone into Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and ignored Iran, Syria, Yemen, we still would be encountering Islamic terrorism.  We did all this in response to 9/11.  What did we do that was so wrong before that?

Islamic terror is rampant throughout Africa, and we never touched that. 


Islam has an agenda apart from retaliation for our intrusion in the Middle East.  It goes back to its founding in the 7th century.  Islam was quiet for a while after WW1 when France and England controlled most of their lands.  But as they relinquished control, the beast awoke.  Some people believe that World War III has already begun.

Christianity in a Post-Christian West: a response to Christianity Today

It panged me to read several of the articles in Christianity Today (November) about the relationship of the church and the culture.  They gave me the sense that Christians should feel fortunate to have lived in a country that gave them such generous and unusual religious freedoms and that they shouldn’t have been surprised or alarmed that the culture turned against them.

On the contrary, our country was ‘fortunate’ to have been founded by Christians who created a new kind of government that guaranteed all kinds of freedoms for its people.  I know there is disagreement over the exact nature of the faith of George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson, but the facts remain that the First Congress among its first acts proclaimed a day of prayer and thanksgiving for our nation, it published Bibles to be used in all the public schools, the Capitol building itself was used as a church for a hundred years after our nation’s founding, and Thomas Jefferson asked Congress for funds to help evangelize the Indians.

Religion, specifically Christianity, and morality were considered by our Founders as essential for the health and happiness of our nation.

The culture in America changed basically because of the government.  The court called supreme ruled that government cannot aid religion (1947) and later removed the Bible and prayer from our public schools (the 1960s), undoing practices in place since well before our nation’s founding, hundreds of years.  This morphed into the removal of all mention of God in schools and public life essentially establishing our country as a secular nation and basically changed the definition of religion from a description of truth and reality to a person’s private beliefs, along the lines of a person’s taste in music or food.

Few people anymore question what the First Amendment actually means by “the establishment of religion.’   (Answer: the creation of a state church as still exists in most of Europe.)  Christians and everybody else blithely accepted the expansion of this principle to include essentially prohibiting any and all mention of God in our public schools and public places and discourse. 

This new definition, or view, of religion removed the idea of religion as a worldview, so nobody questioned that secularism is as much of a religion as Christianity, where government replaces God as the ultimate authority, the people’s lawgiver, benefactor, protector, and savior.  The government is now responsible for solving everybody’s problems and ensuring their welfare and happiness. 

Where were the Christians while all this was going on?  In 1954, Congress passed the Johnson (as in LBJ) Amendment, a little attachment to another entirely unrelated bill that linked tax exempt status and political involvement, and churches afraid of losing their tax exempt status stopped most or all of their political activity, something they had been doing since well before our nation’s founding.

What the early Christians in our country knew that Christians today don’t think of is that we don’t have rulers, kings, or Caesars in our country; we have representatives.  The rules about submitting to our leaders don’t apply here, at least in the way described in the Bible.  Like an employer who hires and fires people according to how the employees contribute to the interests of his company or someone who may hire a lawyer to oversee one’s affairs, government officials essentially work for us.  And discussions public and private about their policies and practices is what responsible people do.  Forbidding tax exempt status to churches who discuss politics and political candidates is a practice that the Church should have challenged and demanded to be changed.

The articles discouraged Christians from thinking that electing the right people will solve their problems.  But Christians more than anybody should know the value of leadership.  Those who know Biblical history know that how the leaders go, so goes the nation.  Moses appointed Joshua, who led the people into the Promised Land.  Joshua didn’t appoint a leader, and the nation couldn’t follow through. 

The pattern is seen over and over through the stories of the kings.  A godly king brought about a revival in the nation.  An ungodly king turned the nation away from God.  It was only when President Obama came out in favor of gay marriage that the courts and the media showed strong support for it, leading to the overturning of 30 State Constitutions prohibiting it and the eventual supreme court [sic] ruling legalizing it.  If he had not done that, gay marriage would still not be legal in our country.  Yes, the institution of marriage had been breaking down for decades, but there was still a public consensus supporting it. 

The Book of Acts seems to paint a new paradigm, where society changes from the bottom up as people turn to God.  Yet even today, as Christians well know, churches thrive or die depending on their leadership.  If Christians won’t lead the United States, we leave it in the hands of the ungodly, and we shouldn’t be surprised by the outcome.

The culture war should be a wake-up call to the Church that it has become irrelevant in a society that for the first time in history was put together in a way that gave it every advantage.  Maybe the Church was unprepared for a political fight or considered it unfitting for the Church, forgetting that our government is not our rulers but our representatives. 
The Church in America sees politics as distractions outside of its area of concern and influence, yet every member of the Church has locks on their doors and fences around their property to protect themselves from theft and intrusion.  And they wouldn’t hesitate to hire a lawyer or call the police when their material property rights were violated.  If their bank was skimming from their accounts every month, they would be in an uproar.  

Loss of rights and freedoms are not as obvious as property encroachments; and, since they happen incrementally, they are often not noted or they are accepted as necessary compromises.
Christians are careful to give their ten percent to the Church as good stewards of what God has given them.  And then they are supposed to let the government take another 50% (add up all the federal, payroll, medicare, state, local, sales, property, gasoline taxes and fees), and they are not supposed to have a say on how that money is spent?

The Church is losing the cultural war in the West, and that is seen as a good thing.  Ooh, now we get to be persecuted! 

But the Church is losing the cultural war in the West, because it failed the culture it lived in.  It showed itself as poor examples, as powerless to help people in their problems, and unable to answer the challenges presented to it, like evolution or moral and cultural relativism. 


It doesn’t make sense to think that we as a Church can and should only help people with their spiritual problems or material problems on a personal basis.  If we are not involved in our school boards and our public policies, we will be presenting ourselves to the world, not as conveyors of the truth, but like a commercial product just trying to increase its market share just to make a name for itself.

Friday, November 6, 2015

A Christian's Responsibility to Immigrants, Migrants, and Refugees: A response to an editorial

Should Christians take their kid’s college fund and give it to homeless people?  Should Christians move entire neighborhoods of people from high crime, low income areas to their suburbs so these people will have better schools and a safer place to live?

Yes, America has always been known for being welcoming to immigrants, but we never in our past accepted people just because they wanted to come here.  People were routinely refused admittance if they were illiterate, immoral, subversive, sick, or liable to being dependent on the government.  Now, whether with the illegal immigrants or the new migrants, we are being told to just take them all, no questions asked.

The West’s elaborate and generous welfare system did not exist when we had the mass migrations of the early 1900s.  Before we sent most of our good paying jobs overseas, an increase in population increased demand, and there were always plenty of good jobs for people. 

Now we have the lowest labor participation rates since maybe before World War 2.  We have record numbers of people on food stamps and welfare, and the American dream of children living better than their parents or families where mothers stay home to raise their children are unrealistic for most people.

This mass migration of people to Europe are not all Syrian refugees fleeing war.  They come from throughout the Muslim world, and they want to go to Germany and Sweden primarily, because Germany and Sweden have the best welfare benefits.  Go to youtube and watch all the videos coming from Europe about how things are going there since they have been accepting millions of immigrants, migrants, and refugees from Africa and Asia. 

Sweden is now the rape capital of the world.  Women regularly dye their blond hair black in the hopes they will less likely be a victim.  Where Islam couldn’t defeat Europe and the West in war, they have settled for doing it more slowly by demographics, replacing an aging white population with young Muslims. 


If we were winning them to Christ in the West, this could be an ideal way to win the Muslim world.  They would make the best missionaries to go back.  But we are not.  There are more and more people who are seeing the decline and rapidly approaching death of the West through bankruptcy and demographics.  We no longer know what Western civilization was built on.