Religion, Politics, Culture: Defined & Explained

Friday, February 12, 2016

Glen Beck Attacks Trump

Two very different articles today have appeared about discrimination and Christianity.

First, Glen Beck has launched a full-on attack of Donald Trump as a fraud who has never opened a Bible and is a fake Christian.

image

“too many people are looking at Trump and believing that man has ever opened a Bible…that’s the biggest crock of bullcrap I’ve ever heard”
– Glen Beck 02-11-2016

Glenn Beck On Trump’s Christian Faith: ‘Biggest Crock Of Bullcrap I’ve Ever Heard’

Glenn Beck floats Trump’s Christian faith as fake

Mr. Beck’s personal beliefs on religion are rather out of the mainstream so I find it interesting that this is the area that he has chosen to attack Trump. Beck is a Mormon that likes to borrow ideas from Evangelical Christianity. There is no clear record that Beck could rightly be called a Christian—as defined by the Historical Creeds.

Beck was campaigning for Ted Cruz when he made his comments. Cruz has lifted the banner of Christ as his rallying point. This is curious to me when Cruz is unwilling to model public policy after Biblical Law.

I have reluctantly come to agree with Gary North’s assertion that Christians are not ready to lead. I have been in, under, and around Christians in politics for over thirty years, and this is long enough to follow several movements from start to finish, everything that Christians touch in the political arena, they screw-up. The latter state is worse than the former.

In the 1990’s, Evangelicals took over the Republican Party in California and made a huge mess out of it. Look at the Moral Majority, Christian Coalition, Capital Resource Institute, and a host of similar groups. They all end-up not bringing their faith and applying it to the political landscape but copying the power politic tactics of their enemies—they know no other paradigm—and adopting them as their own. Baptizing Power Religion does not make it Christian.

I don’t know where Trump’s heart is; only God does. I am not aware of any “fruit” to which I could point that says, “There’s your proof” but so what? I think of him as a typical American Roman Catholic. He has some incomplete knowledge of God and likely lacks a personal relationship with him. Trump needs your prayers—whether or not he is elected.

For Beck, Cruz, and Trump, I think of verses like this:

It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains.  But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.
Philippians 1:15-18



The second story which I will only mention briefly is about a BBC news anchor (presenter) Dan Walker. Walker is under fire for believing that Genesis is true and refusing to work on Sundays. (Chariots of Fire anyone?)

The bulk of the article is an attack on Walker by London Telegraph columnist Rupert Myers. Myers’ real problem is with God. Myers appears to be a typical humanist who is openly hostile to Christianity.

The gist of the matter is that because Walker is a Christian, he cannot be trusted when interviewing people on issues of science, education or technology.

If it weren’t for Christianity and the belief that God is knowable and his Creation is orderly and not random, we would have no basis for science but why let history get in the way of prejudice? Education in the West was the product of a Christian worldview.

Clearly Myers sees his chance to become the next Christopher Hitchens.


New BBC anchor takes heat for Christian faith

Posted by william on 02/12 at 08:31 AM
Christianity & ReligionPermalink

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Don’t You Wish?

If Beyoncé did a Doritos ad for the Super Bowl would the controversy be “Unborn Black Lives Matter?”

Posted by william on 02/11 at 03:06 PM
BloggingPermalink

Monday, February 08, 2016

NARAL: Fetal Parody Tantrum

The National Abortion Rights Action League took issue with a Doritos advertisement that aired during Super Bowl 50 and made total asses out of themselves in the process.

I thought the ad was slightly offensive for making fun of a baby inside the mother but I never expected that the pro-abortion crowd would actually take this as a serious affront to their right to kill babies. I’m sure Doritos is happy about the publicity and doubly happy at how stupid NARAL looks to the rest of us. Thus no grounds for a corporate apology.

In the ad, the mom, a doctor and the father watch as the fetus moves to and fro in its mom’s tummy in an attempt to get closer to a chip wielded by the father.

When the exasperated mom flings the chip across the room, the baby follows – exiting the ultrasound frame and, apparently, the womb. The last bit is only intimated, as the camera pans to the horrified faces of the mom, dad and doctor as the Doritos logo flashes on the screen.
NARAL Article on FoxNews.com

image
NARAL stupidity on Twitter


Here are a few choice—can I use this word when attacking abortion rights folks who think they own it—quotes from the Fox New article.

“If NARAL is scandalized by the notion that a human fetus is human, then they are scandalized by science,” Ashley McGuire, a senior fellow with The Catholic Association, said in a statement to FoxNews.com.

McGuire’s statement continues:

“We know children in the womb have distinct and human DNA. We also know that they exhibit all sorts of human behaviors in the womb such as yawning, thumb-sucking, and even dancing thanks to tremendous advances in ultrasound technology.

“But groups like NARAL and Planned Parenthood rely on a denial of these scientific realities better suited to the Dark Ages to maintain their rabid insistence that those unborn babies are undeserving of basic human rights.”

Rush Limbaugh is right, Liberals have no sense of humor.

 

Posted by william on 02/08 at 07:12 PM
News & PoliticsPermalink

Friday, February 05, 2016

Myth of Solar Energy

Dishonest scales are an abomination to the Lord, But a just weight is His delight.
Proverbs 11:1

I have a few older stories that I’ve been saving to comment on later; The State of Nevada and Solar Power is one. As is often the case, you must go outside the United States to see what’s going on in our country since our media is so reluctant to report the news instead of regurgitating press releases from their Liberal friends.

One would think that a state that is mostly desert, heat, and sunshine would be a leader in solar energy; however, this is not the case. Like their neighbors in California, the politicians in Nevada have decided that killing the “Golden Goose” is better than slowly bleeding it.

Although Nevada is one of the sunniest places in the world, there has recently been a dark cloud hovering over the rooftop solar industry in the state. Just before Christmas, Nevada’s public utility commission (PUC) gave the state’s only power company, NV Energy, permission to charge higher rates and fees to solar panel users – a move that immediately shattered the rooftop solar industry’s business model.
theguardian.com/environment/2016/jan/13/solar-panel-energy-power-company-Nevada

That’s right, at a time when Obama and company are trying to pile drive fossil fuels into the ground and Saudi Arabia has declared economic war on US energy companies, Nevada Power has killed the alternative energy market and effectively nationalized all privately owned solar cells in the state.

The money quote in the article is, “People would pay more for going solar rather than less. It has left companies no choice but to stop doing business in the state.”

Instead of Nevada Power paying fair market value for excess power that they purchase from solar customers, the utility says it will pay only 2.8 cents per kilowatt and then they will sell it for 13 cents. They also will be charging solar customers more for electricity that they buy on nights and cloudy days. This is in addition to charging each solar customer a $40 per month fee just to be hooked up to “the grid”.

The article concludes, “Not only that, if they are going to give us 2.8 cents a kilowatt and then sell it for 13 cents, basically 17,000 Nevada homeowners built a solar farm for Nevada power. I don’t think that can be right.”


For those of you that think commercial solar power is the answer, take a look in your favorite Internet search engine. Enter this criteria: California solar farm gross polluter

On the first page, you will begin to see mention of Ivanpah solar farm. Yeah, solar power is a gross polluter. Why? Because they need to burn large quantities of natural gas. big solar big gas Ivanpah

As its name implies, the Ivanpah Concentrated Solar Thermal Power Plant in the Mojave Desert is supposed to provide renewable energy from the rays of the sun.
But on March 26, 2014, Ivanpah applied to the California Energy Commission and the California Air Resources Board to increase, from one to five hours, its auxiliary gas-fired boiler’s use of pre-warmed fluid for its steam generators.  Ivanpah generates power for about 12 hours of solar insulation each day, of which four to five hours are peak generation. Ivanpah is projected to generate electricity for 249 days each year due to cloud cover, desert windstorms, nighttime and other constraints.
Ivanpah morphs into gas solar hybrid


“The moral of the story? Expansive government is good at merely shifting environmental and economic problems around from one political constituency or region to another, while claiming it has solved such problems.”
—Master Resource article.


I recall seeing another story which stated that a solar farm in California was classified as a “gross polluter’ because they use too much water to scrub their solar panels. Sorry but I can’t find the reference to this story.


I did however find another solar related article.

A PV solar panel is not “pollution free”, just the opposite, it carries with it a very large carbon footprint and a trio of toxic emissions unique unto itself. A solar panel is a product manufactured by energy rich fossil fuels and lots of them, and that manufacturing process creates additional bad guys unique unto itself. Quote from Ozzie Zehner new book “Green Illusions”: “Not only are solar cells an overpriced tool for reducing CO2 emissions, but their manufacturing process is also one of the largest emitters of hexafluoroethane, nitrogen trifluoride, and sulfur hexafluoride, chemicals used for cleaning plasma production equipment, these three gruesome greenhouse gases make CO2 seem harmless. As a greenhouse gas, hexafluoroethane is twelve thousand times more potent than CO2, is 100 percent manufactured by humans, and survives ten thousand years once released into the atmosphere. Nitrogen trifluoride is seventeen thousand times more virulent than CO2, and sulfur hexafluoride, the most treacherous greenhouse gas, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, is twenty-five thousand times more threatening. The solar photovoltaic industry is one of the leading and fastest growing emitters of these gases, which are now measurably accumulating within the earth’s atmosphere, recent studies on nitrogen trifluoride reports that atmospheric concentrations of the gas have been rising an alarming 11 percent per year.” 
Go solar California Information

I’ve been hearing the praises of solar power since Jimmy Carter was President but it still doesn’t seem ready for primetime.

The truth is nuclear can be safer, cheaper, and more available but one Jane Fonda movie and some stupid government regulations ruined the industry.

 

Posted by william on 02/05 at 03:51 PM
BloggingPermalink

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

Hawkeyes Results

Iowa Results in percent

Cruz   28
Trump 24
Rubio   23
Carson   9
Paul   5
That’s 89 percent of the vote!

Where’s Bush?

Huckabee is out.

Look for Carson to decline further. I expect his support to shift to Cruz.

Paul, like his dad, will stay in as long as he can. The real question is when he does drop out, will he endorse anyone? And when he does will it matter?

Next it’s New Hampshire. Look for more GOP hopefuls to drop off after that.

I expect Trump to win in New Hampshire but who gets second? If Cruz finishes third, it may be a rough March for him. If he gets second, then we may have a more interesting contest.

Update 02-03-2016
Paul did drop-out. Wow.
Ditto for Rick Santorum

Also, is it the “Bush effect”? Not a single governor has a snowball’s chance to make it. This used to be proof that you could handle the Executive duties of the job.

Posted by william on 02/02 at 09:42 AM
News & PoliticsPermalink

Monday, February 01, 2016

Bloomberg Running? Now that’s March Madness

Michael Bloomberg, is threatening to run as an independent for President if he doesn’t like where the race is heading. Supposedly, he will make-up his mind come March. link for article “President Michael Bloomberg”


This is nothing but wishful hoping by a bunch of Democrats that are fearful that Hillary won’t be their nominee. By March, Bloomberg will not only have missed most filing deadlines to run but missed participation in all early primaries and missed-out on being on the ballot during the “Super Tuesday” contests in March. By the time he would jump into the race and actually get his name on a ballot somewhere, the Republicans will likely have their nominee and we will know if Bernie Sanders really has the support of Democrats.

Bloomberg’s entrance into the race would cement a Trump victory and a fractured Liberal ticket. It would be worse that what Ross Perot did to George Bush back in 1992.

While it would be fun to watch, there is no way that it will happen. However, it does raise some interesting questions.

• Are Sanders voters voting for Bernie or against Hillary?

• Suppose Bloomberg managed to get on California’s ballot by the March 25th deadline. What happens in a State like California where only the top two vote getters in the primary appear on the November ballot? Suppose he is a serious candidate going into November but California says he can’t be on the ballot.

• Perhaps Bloomberg and Sanders show-up on the November ballot but a Republican does not.

Posted by william on 02/01 at 10:22 AM
News & PoliticsPermalink

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

A Story Concerning 13 Hours

image

A friend of mine is retired from the Air Force. Recently, he invited some Facebook friends to join him for a viewing of Michael Bay’s 13 Hours at a local theater. This was the second week after the movie’s release. He stated that we should all arrive early to be sure we got tickets.

I followed his instructions and arrived at the specified time. Not seeing him outside the theater, I bought my ticket so I could get out of the rain and inside the theater to see if he was already there. Again, I did not see him in the lobby, so I got a medium popcorn and drink and went to the appropriate theater. Again, I did not see him. I found a seat and waited.

After about 15 minutes of previews for TV shows I probably will never watch, I sent him a text. His reply was that they were about 8 minutes away.

Ten minutes later, they finally arrived. He said, “I’m sorry we’re late”.

My response was, “Isn’t that the whole point of the movie? You Air Force guys being late?”

wink

Posted by william on 01/27 at 07:44 AM
BloggingPermalink

Thursday, January 14, 2016

ECUSA Gets a Timeout

The Anglican Communion has suspended the Episcopal Church of the United States. In a move that should have happened when the 1928 Prayer Book was dumped in favor of a watered-down, modern language one (i.e. the 1970’s), nevertheless, the worldwide group has finally acted.

For the first time, the global organizing body of Anglicans has punished the Episcopal Church, following years of heated debate with the American church over homosexuality, same-sex marriage and the role of women.

The Anglican Communion’s announcement Thursday that it would suspend its U.S. branch for three years from key voting positions was seen as a blow to the Episcopal Church, which allows its clergy to perform same-sex marriages and this summer voted to include the rite in its church laws.

It was also seen as a victory for conservative Anglicans, especially those in Africa,, who for years have been pressing the Anglican Communion to discipline the U.S. body.

“The traditional doctrine of the church in view of the teaching of Scripture, upholds marriage as between a man and a woman in faithful, lifelong union,” the leaders of the Anglican Communion, which represents 44 national churches, said in a statement during a meeting in Canterbury. “The majority of those gathered reaffirm this teaching.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2016/01/14/anglican-communion-suspends-the-episcopal-church-for-3-years-from-committees/

The article goes on to report that since 2003, ECUSA

“has lost more than 20 percent of its members since it consecrated Robinson, and new statistics suggest that membership continues to fall, dropping 2.7 percent from 2013 to about 1.8 million U.S. members in 2014.”

What is happening is that the faithful part of the church—which is showing exponential growth—has isolated the malignant tumor that is the American Church. Were it not for hundreds of millions in trust funds and endowments, ECUSA would be extinct. This large cache of money has insulated them from having to hold to biblical orthodoxy in order to survive.

It’s sad when wolves like Gene Robinson are the Shepherds of the flock. When lay people need to pray for the repentance and salvation of their church leaders, in my world it’s time to go elsewhere. No wonder today’s youth are so pagan. Many people are in hell today because of Robinson and his fellow liberals but they’re ok with that because they don’t believe in hell anyway.

Since believing the words of Jesus is not necessary to be a Christian as Robinson defines it, I’m not sure why he would even call himself a Christian. Gene, if you don’t believe in the Bible, be honest enough to get out of the church. Heretics, heathen, and hypocrites are leading ECUSA beyond apostasy. Scripture promises that leaders like you should be fitted with a millstone and put out to sea.

Instead of repenting, look for the ECUSA leadership to double-down on their rebellion.

 

Posted by william on 01/14 at 09:26 PM
Christianity & ReligionPermalink

Friday, January 08, 2016

Cartoon Network: Leaven in Your Living Room

It is the belief of some fringe protestant group—possible the Amish—that claim that “Satan travels true wires” so if you don’t have electricity, he can’t target you. I’m starting to think they might have a point.

Earlier this week I was reading articles on Blastr.com. I often visit this website to see what movies are in the works; one article caught my eye.
Cartoon Network UK censoring Steven Universe’s sexuality misses the entire point of the show

Until recently, I would not be interested in what is happening in the U.K. but since Obama took office, I have found England’s U.S. news coverage more comprehensive than I usually get from American journalists. The media here is so in love with our dictator-in-chief that they are rarely objective. Often they either praise his rule by Executive Order or just ignore what he is doing—whichever they think will further his administration more.

When a website dedicated to the genre of science fiction entertainment is talking about Cartoon Network, censorship in England, and sexuality; clearly something is amiss.

Before I get into this article I want you to understand who owns and operates this website. This website is run by the SyFy Channel. SyFy is owned by NBC-Universal which is owned by Comcast. This is not some fringe place on the internet. No, this website is part of one of the largest entertainment companies in the world.

The article is an opinion piece that defends a particular cartoon and castigates the censorship by English broadcasters. The edit being complained about is rather mild in my opinion. What shocked me most was the high praise of Steven Universe for being the most openly gay cartoon ever made. Steven is gay; not just the side-kick or some peripheral character.

Steven Universe is gaaaaaaaay. It is easily the gayest kids’ cartoon in the history of western animation. And we’re not just talking about subtext, either. While Steven Universe may be innocent and cutesy, there’s no denying certain facts:

- Garnet is a gem fusion that resulted from Sapphire and Ruby being in romantic love

- Pearl is in love with Rose Quartz (as confirmed by the show’s creators), often to the detriment of her own self worth

- Amethyst shape-shifts into all sorts of forms, many of them male-presenting

- Steven and Connie have fuzed to form a genderqueer person, Stevonnie, who is, let’s be real, attracted and attractive to both men and women

- Background characters often feature same-sex couples

In short, Steven Universe is a rainbow show, kids. And everyone loves it for that.

Well, almost everyone ...



image
Steven Universe


I’m like dang! I had no idea that there was such a thing. To me this cartoon is totally out of bounds. I know that most programming on Cartoon Network is not Thomas and Friends but really! This is propaganda and recruiting in its most blatant form.

The fact that this is shown on Cartoon Network means to me that it will fly under the radar of most parents. When I think Boomerang or Cartoon Network I think of children’s programming and I likely wouldn’t give much thought to the title Steven Universe. I thought it was Jimmie Neutron for the next generation.

It’s hard to have worse programming than the pre-teen crap on the Disney Channel but apparently NBC found a way. Too bad they can’t keep homosexuals confined to their Bravo channel.

This also means Steven Universe will eventually find its way to streaming services like Netflix and Hulu. Parents, it might be a simplification that Satan travels true wires but he certainly is trying really hard to get through your television to desensitized your children to evil.

This is another reason to “cut the cord”.

Posted by william on 01/08 at 01:07 PM
Christianity & ReligionPermalink

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Cutting the Cable in 2016

2016 began with my efforts to stop more fiscal bleeding so I can add more fuel to the Dave Ramsey snowball”.

On New Year’s Day, we cancelled our subscription to DirecTV. I had been a customer of DirecTV for about ten years.

Back in 2006, I traded in our miserable service from Comcast. Comcast’s Internet and HD television we just crappy. Dial-up was faster on evenings and weekends than anything offered by Comcast. Their HD could be beaten by “rabbit ears” any day.

Unfortunately I live on the “old side” of Elk Grove where there is no fiber-optic cable or competition. Thus we looked at Dish and DirecTV. The deciding factor of which satellite product to go with literally came down to one TV show. My three year old liked Thomas the Tank Engine and Dish didn’t carry the station and DirecTV did so we went with them.

In contrast to Comcast, DirecTV had great service and a superior television experience. However, the bill kept inching upward. Two years ago, we dropped one television from our bill. We went from three to two TVs. I think we did that in November or December of 2014. We also went to a lesser programming package. Then in January, DirecTV raised their rates. After all was said and done, our DirecTV bill was about two dollars cheaper than having a higher programming package and an additional TV.

We have been subscribing to Amazon Prime and Netflix anyway so I decided to bite the bullet and “cut the cord”. The only thing we immediately miss is HGTV. They have no streaming subscription package and you can’t get much from their website. Yeah I know you can get them on Sling TV but you can’t DVR the programs or watch them when you want. Besides, we just added Hulu and the idea is to save money not reallocate it.

We bought a TiVo Bolt and a drone unit for the bedroom. Only after buying it did we learn that Hulu is not available thru the Bolt. As best as I can piece together, the app for the Bolt needs to be written in HTML 5 but previous TiVo products used Flash Player to power their app. TiVo has yet to get their Hulu app working on the Bolt. I called TiVo a few days ago and was assured that the Hulu app would be deployed to users in the next few days; I have yet to see it.
Update: After posting this blog, I checked again and found that the Hulu app is now available on my TiVo Bolt

Anyway, here is the quick and dirty economic analysis. DirecTV costs $109 per month less Hulu subscription of $12 yields a net savings of $97 per month. ($1,164 per year)

Oh the TiVo Bolt was $299 at BestBuy but was on sale for $289 and when we paid for it, for some reason we were given a $50 BestBuy card. We used the card to buy the $149 drone unit so we got both for about $400. The Bolt will support 4K displays and record up to four programs at once off the HD antenna.

In April, we get to kick Verizon to the curb. We will finish switching to Cricket. This will cut our monthly cell phone bill about $140 dollars compared to what I’m paying right now for two phones on “Big Red”. Oh, I think we will at least double our data when we switch.

Posted by william on 01/05 at 09:20 PM
TechnologyPermalink

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Christmas in a Time of Apostasy

I was hoping just to post something light in honor of Christmas and then take a few days off but then I went to World Net Daily and saw an article that really got me upset. 

‘Fairy tale’: Many pastors don’t believe Jesus born of virgin

More people might come to church if Christians would drop “fairy tale” tidbits like the Nativity story.

That’s the belief of a minister in Cairns Church in Milngavie, Scotland.

According to Scotland’s Herald, Rev. Andrew Frater wants Christians to “move on from the ‘fanciful, fairy tale’ Nativity story and ‘disentangle the truth from the tinsel.’”

The report said Frater believes telling the traditional story of the birth of Jesus “had the effect of keeping people with doubts about their faith away from the church, as the Nativity was too easily dismissed.”

Christian preacher nativity story just fairy tale

With the widespread rejection of a six-day creation in favor of evolution, it’s no wonder that the Virgin Birth of Christ should be so easily rejected. To reject one and hold to the other is a logical contradiction. What this also means is that once you reject Creation and the Virgin Birth, then you logically must also reject the Resurrection of Christ. Once you reject the Resurrection, then you are no longer a Christian.

Which brings us to the next part of the article.

According to a 1998 poll of 7,441 Protestant clergy in the U.S., the following ministers said they didn’t believe in the virgin birth:

• American Lutherans, 19 percent

• American Baptists, 34 percent

• Episcopalians, 44 percent

• Presbyterians, 49 percent

• Methodists, 60 percent

With so many clergy rejecting the authority of Scripture, is it any wonder that the Church is becoming increasingly irrelevant in the West? Wolves in sheep’s clothing are the norm in many denominations. If clergy are willing to publicly disclose their disbelief, it seems likely that others doubt but are afraid to say so. These statistics are gathered by religious tolerance.org Virgin Birth Surveys


I’m sure the heresy in these denominations has grown worst since 1998. Can you say “gay marriage”?

What is interesting on this website is that more regular people believe in the Virgin Birth than clergy by a wide margin.

Some ministers think they can deny the clear teaching on such core issues such as the Virgin Birth and Resurrection and be Christians but Scripture contradicts such nonsense.

The Virgin Birth is not optional; it is the core of the Incarnation. If God did not become man then there is no hope for us. Creation, the Virgin Birth and Resurrection are all core doctrines of the historic Christian Creeds.

The Biblical account is not ambiguous. The Virgin Birth is an historical fact. Here are some passages supporting this core doctrine:

This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.  But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.  She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: “The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”—which means, “God with us.” When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus. Matthew

1:18-25 emphasis added

Luke, a physician by train, wrote not only the Gospel bearing his name but also the book of Acts, begins his narrative by stating that he interviewed eye witnesses and investigated the facts to write his account of the life of Christ.

Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word.  Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus,  so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.

Luke 1:1-4 emphasis added

Contrast this with Rev Frater, “For me, it’s time to travel beyond the literalists’ landscape; time to acknowledge that Luke and Matthew were not newspaper reporters. Although facts were for them significant, they were also secondary.”

So we have a choice, believe the written account of eyewitnesses or the rambling of a Scottish hypocrite who swore an oath of fidelity to a God he doesn’t believe in.
Like Matthew, Luke is not ambiguous.

“How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”  The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God.  Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is in her sixth month.  For nothing is impossible with God.”  “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said.” Then the angel left her.

Luke 2:34-38 emphasis added

There are other mentions of the Virgin Birth in the Gospels that are beyond the scope of this article that create even more problems for Frater and other doubters.

Likewise the Resurrection is not an optional doctrine for Christians.

But the one whom God raised from the dead did not see decay. Acts 13:37

And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 1 Corinthians 15:14

And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 1 Corinthians 15:17

Paul, an apostle—sent not from men nor by man, but by Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead— Galatians 1:1


I would like to close this blog with some portions of the Athanasian Creed that are relevant to this topic. There are 44 lines to the complete Creed.

1. Whosoever will be saved, before all things it is necessary that he hold the catholic faith;

2. Which faith except every one do keep whole and undefiled, without doubt he shall perish everlastingly.


29. Furthermore it is necessary to everlasting salvation that he also believe rightly the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ.

30. For the right faith is that we believe and confess that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and man.

31. God of the substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds; and man of substance of His mother, born in the world.

32. Perfect God and perfect man, of a reasonable soul and human flesh subsisting.

33. Equal to the Father as touching His Godhead, and inferior to the Father as touching His manhood.

34. Who, although He is God and man, yet He is not two, but one Christ.

35. One, not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh, but by taking of that manhood into God.

36. One altogether, not by confusion of substance, but by unity of person.

37. For as the reasonable soul and flesh is one man, so God and man is one Christ;

38. Who suffered for our salvation, descended into hell, rose again the third day from the dead;

39. He ascended into heaven, He sits on the right hand of the Father, God, Almighty;


44. This is the catholic faith, which except a man believe faithfully he cannot be saved.

emphasis added

Posted by william on 12/24 at 10:28 AM
BloggingPermalink

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

CRI’s Legacy of Failure Continues

image

According to the Los Angeles Times, Capitol Resource Institute (CRI) has concluded its 2015 fund raising campaign. The organization has used several failed attempts to overturn the “bathroom bill” via the initiative process as their latest source of fundraising and mail list building.

From the LA Times., “Karen England of the Privacy for All campaign said in a statement that the volunteer-led effort fell short of the 365,880 signatures needed to get the initiative on the November 2016 ballot.”
http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-transgender-public-restroom-requirement-fails-to-make-california-ballot-20151222-story.html

This is the least amount of signatures required to qualify a ballot measure in the modern era and CRI doesn’t even have enough signatures to submit them to be counted!

CRI has never qualified any ballot initiative they have attempted. This has been their pattern for about fifteen years now. They either find an issue or try to highjack someone else’s and use it to fund their operations. Furthermore, they never seem to raise enough money on their efforts to file any reports with the Secretary of State’s Office. I have been told by those that have investigated CRI ventures in the past that SOS doesn’t really care about failed attempts because statewide there are too many to follow up on. This has been fortunate for CRI because they have skirted the campaign finance rules and possibly some provisions of the tax code for non-profits.

CRI does not act ethically and follow the law—which most people would assume a Christian family values lobbying group would naturally do.

However, I have criticism that needs to be leveled at CRI different than those mentioned above; this is related to the fact that CRI is acting in the name of Jesus Christ.

First, Jesus told us to “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not first sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it?  For if he lays the foundation and is not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him,  saying, ‘This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.’ “Luke 14:28-30

CRI knows how much a ballot initiative costs to run in California and they never have the money to complete what they set out to accomplish. To qualify a ballot initiative usually costs about three million dollars. As mentioned earlier, they never even get to the threshold of having to file electronically with the Secretary of State—$50,000. Once something is qualified for the ballot, you need additional funds to run the campaign. Depending on the issue and degree of opposition—which in CRI’s case would be significant—a campaign will cost on average 20 to 30 million dollars.

CRI not only looks foolish and makes themselves an object of ridicule but they do something even worse; they embolden the other side to become even more radical. The mockers of biblical authority and of Christ wrongly think that God is impotent because of the bad witness these folks are giving to our Lord.

In short, CRI has found a way of taking the Lord’s name in vain.
“You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name. “ Exodus 20:7

The people involved with CRI have a proven record of failure. As much as it pains me to say it, I think we would be better off without CRI. A bad witness is worse than none at all.

Posted by william on 12/23 at 09:51 AM
News & PoliticsPermalink

Friday, December 18, 2015

California Agency Struggles to Comfort Employees

De Nile is not just a river in Egypt; it’s a way of life when liberals run the government.

Yesterday, another missive was circulated entitled “Emergency Situation Preparedness.” Citing the San Bernardino shooting and closure of Los Angeles schools (based on a hoax), this state agency sent out the “…following information copied from a large university’s safety update includes valuable information from their Campus Security on preparedness and what to do if you are involved in an active shooter situation.”

The email goes on to try to describe the difference between an active shoot and a hostage situation. “Hostage or barricaded subject situations often take place over a longer period of time, and usually there is no ongoing injury or loss of life. “

Somehow the Beslan terror attack is omitted from these discussions. (see Wikipedia article on Beslan school siege) The Beslan terror attack involved 1,100 hostages taken at an elementary school. Over the three day siege, 385 were killed. Most Americans have never heard of this event. A documentary on this event—narrated by actress Julia Roberts—is well worth viewing.

The memo then goes on to describe how to respond when a shooter is in your area. The reader is offered three options after they dial 911:
1. Run
2. Hide
3. Fight

Option 3, Fight is the most entertaining section to read. Remember government buildings including schools and offices are “gun free zones”. This means only bad guys can be armed in these areas. They are the aggressors and we are the targets (victims).

3. Fight.
Take action against the active shooter as a last resort, and only when your life is in imminent danger, attempt to disrupt and/or incapacitate the active shooter by:

• Acting as aggressively as possible against him/her.
• Throwing items and improvising weapons.
• Yelling.
• Committing to your actions.



Todd Beamer comes to mind when I read this section but then I remember it is addressed to government workers and my heart sinks. Just for fun, let’s go thru these.

Acting aggressively—OK that guy has a gun, he has just shot up your office and now you walk up to him and do what, growl? Oh, sorry be aggressive and yell. When you yell what do you say, “Get off my lawn”? “Bullying is wrong and you should stop it?”

Throw items—perhaps staplers and tape dispensers. Yeah, tape dispensers, they are heavier and more aerodynamic than coffee cups and flat screen monitors. Like zombie movies, aim for the head.

Committing to your actions—means what exactly? Contrary to popular culture, John Wayne never took unnecessary risks in his movies; he just did what needed to be done. I guess if you plan to fight, be willing to “take one for the team”.

Apparently this is why the last memo we got said keep your ID card with you at all times, so they can identify your body after you miss with the stapler.

Posted by william on 12/18 at 09:30 AM
BloggingPermalink

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Review: Childhood’s End

This week I watched the three part presentation of Childhood’s End on the SyFy channel. The program looked interesting. It was a modern take on the 1953 story by Arthur C Clarke. I have not read the book by Clarke but I did read the summary on Wikipedia.org just to get a feel for what the story was about.

During the six hour program, there were some iconic scenes in this drama that I have seen in other movies. It appears that Clarke was influential on others. The spaceships arriving over the large cities of the world seemed like a redo of Independence Day or the TV show V. Part 3 had some portions that reminded me of the last part of 2001—a much later novel by Clarke. Some parts were like the movie portrayal of Carl Sagan’s Contact. Some of the Midwestern farm scenes were similar to Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar. One scene with the farm house was reminiscent of Poltergeist.  I also thought of Hellboy and the video game series Diablo for a couple of reasons.

These other movies all came between the novel publication and the miniseries of Childhood’s End. Who properly deserves credit for copying whom is probably debatable. The photography and visual effects were really good for something produced by this NBC owned cable network.

The story was tweaked to fit a 21st century setting as opposed to one at the height of the Cold War and prior to the “Space Race”. The story was about aliens coming to our world to end, war, poverty, and disease. They established a utopia for man’s existence. Had the story gone a different direction at this point, it could have become the famous Twilight Zone episode To Serve Man.

The story goes that the utopia or “golden age of man” not only ended war, poverty, and disease but all organized religion as well. In fact, part 2 of the miniseries opens to a cover of John Lenin’s song Imagine. The world created by the alien race was a verbatim fulfillment of the song.

So who were the aliens that brought all this about? I was expecting E.T. , or some guy in green make-up, but no; in the last five seconds of part 1, we get to see the Overlord, Karellen. Karellen is an alien that is a dead-ringer for ol’ scratch himself. I’ll let Steve Taylor describe him:

When the wind came hissing through the vents,
And I felt my sneakers growing tense
My forehead broke in a cold, cold sweat
In the rearview was a silhouette
Then I heard the doorlocks take a dive
And a whisper screamed “Don’t turn around, just drive”

Scratch! Dressed in red—pointy tail and horn-rimmed head
And a widow’s peak like Eddie Munster

From Drive, He Said 1985


Yeah, the aliens looked like Diablo or Hellboy without big muscles.


image
Karellen, the Overlord of Earth


Clarke did this on purpose. Not only did he have to do away with organized religion but he had to do it in a way that directly tries to confront Christianity. Here are some things that came to my mind as I think about the program.

Satan and those that look like him are the good guys.
“Five decades after their arrival the Overlords reveal their appearance, resembling the traditional Christian folk images of demons: large bipeds with cloven hooves, leathery wings, horns, and tails.” –Wikipedia
Satan doesn’t look like Scratch but appears as an angel of light. The time frame in the TV show was less than the fifty years in the novel.

What we know as manifestations of demon possession are really demonstrations of psychic power
The Bible teaches that demon possession happens, whether it is common or exceptional is a matter of some debate amongst Christians. Scripture has no warrant for telekinesis or psychic powers.

Ouija boards are good
People with psychic powers use Ouiji board to find the homeworld of the Overlords.
In the Bible, seeking knowledge from the spirit world is forbidden. We are to rely solely on God.

All humans are rendered incapable of having children
Children are a gift from God and part of the mandate to take dominion over the Earth. Infertility is not normal. A closed womb can be a sign of divine judgement.

Children are mutated (or evolved) into higher beings
Man will never change or evolve; our technology may change but only the Gospel of Jesus Christ can transform mankind.

God is the creation or a least the consciousness of it
“Karellen reveals the Overlords’ purpose; they serve the Overmind, a vast cosmic intelligence, born of amalgamated ancient civilizations, and freed from the limitations of material existence.” –Wikipedia
This contrasts with the Biblical teaching that God is separate from the creation but interacts and sustains it.


The portrayal of Christians on the show is of deluded souls who deny reality.
The false dilemma of faith being not only at odds with science but in direct opposition to it is perpetrated. Christians believe that God made the material world and that because God is a God of order and perfection that the creation is in fact knowable. Christianity is the basis of science not its adversary. The universe is not random chance, probability, and time. Such a world would be unfathomable.

Clarke’s metaphysics are nonsense and not internally consistent.
Since Childhood’s End is an earlier work than 2001, the portion of the miniseries dealing with the death of a main character is less of an LSD trip than the Star Child junk at the end of 2001. In Childhood’s End, it’s a cross between that scene and John de Lancie’s Q running amok on the holodeck in TNG.

Clarke wants an afterlife but without God. It’s appointed for man to die and after death to face judgement, but it’s a prospect that Clarke tried to avoid.

Childhood’s End is more like Clarke’s childhood tantrum.

We believe that the world was created, has a purpose, and will end someday. Some Christians believe we are living near the end times while others say we are still in the age of the early church. I know some that say we will go to the stars and populate other worlds. They see no contradiction with such an idea. My friend David Chilton was one who held this position.

Science fiction does not have to be hostile to organized religion. Babylon Five is a great example of such a futuristic place. Clarke, Sagan and others want to abolish it. Gene Roddenberry was another. He got very upset when he learned Christians embraced much of his vision of the future. In fact, one episode of the original Star Trek was devoted to Christianity but it has rarely ever aired in syndication. The episode is of a parallel Earth where it took two thousand years for Christianity to finally overcome the Roman Empire.

Childhood’s End starts with much promise but implodes completely before the end of the second part. The final installment becomes laborious to watch. The most interesting part was the man that travels to the Overlord’s homeworld. Their home looks suspiciously like Hell, complete with fire and brimstone. Unfortunately, all we get is a brief glance of the planet followed by some more metaphysical nonsense and the poor guy is whisked off to a dead Earth.

Posted by william on 12/17 at 02:49 PM
BloggingPermalink

Monday, December 14, 2015

Islam or Christ

image
Pastor James McConnell

I saw this headline today, “Evangelical preacher on trial after branding Islam ‘satanic’”

LONDON (AP)—An evangelical preacher from Northern Ireland who branded Islam satanic has been charged with spreading a “grossly offensive” message.

In a May 2014 sermon, James McConnell told worshippers at the Whitewell Metropolitan Tabernacle in Belfast: “Islam is heathen. Islam is satanic.”

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/E/EU_NIRELAND_PREACHER_CHARGED?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2015-12-14-10-21-20

Let’s look at the facts, Islam denies the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus.

Here is a sample of Biblical quotes:

Who is the liar? It is the man who denies that Jesus is the Christ. Such a man is the antichrist—he denies the Father and the Son. 1 John 2:22

Many deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist. 2 John 1:7

That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Colossians 3:1


OK so should I believe the testimony of 1,600 years of prophecy and its fulfillment with a promise of life or a cult of death stuck in the seventh century?

If the Bible is from God then Islam is from something not God and therefore has its origin in Satan. The followers of Islam are deceived and without intervention will end-up in hell. Sounds like the preacher is preaching the Gospel to me.

 

Posted by william on 12/14 at 11:36 AM
Christianity & ReligionPermalink
Page 1 of 41 pages  1 2 3 >  Last »