"I went to Jerusalem to become acquainted (Gk. istoria) with Cephas" - Paul's words from Galatians 1:18.

A Future War That Could Make Iraq Seem Small

The Israeli National News is reporting that the US Refuses to Aid Israel in Attack on Iran. The article is particularly interesting because of the points reporter Zi'ev Ben Yechiel makes about Israel's use of Georgia's airbases in preparation for an attack on Iran. The facts seem clear:

(1). This summer Israel had placed drones and personnel on Georgia Air Force bases in preparation for a preemptive strike on Iran's nuclear facilities.

(2). Georgia and the United States were providing assistance and intelligence to help Israel in the attack, planned for this fall or next spring.

(3). Russia invaded Georgia under the pretext of preventing "border skirmishes," but in reality took an aggressive approach, at the request of Iran, in order to shut down Israel's preparation for such an attack.

(4). The United States, stretched thin due to wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are now pulling back from any assistance to Israel, wary of causing any conflict with either or Russia, Syria or Iran.

(5). Israel will now act on their own.

These facts reveal to us that the next person who will serve as President of the United States will need to be a person of resolve and strength. There could be events in the Middle East within the next four years (or four months) that very well may cause the war in Iraq to look like war games compared to what could happen if conflict between the Israel and the alliance of Russia/Iran/and Syria breaks out.

The United States, no matter what they say now, will not sit on the sidelines.

For this reason, all of us ought to be very sure of the reasons why we vote for whom we desire to see President. More is at stake than just the economy.

In His Grace,

Wade Burleson

174 comments:

Anonymous said...

I personally don't see how anyone can have this information and still vote for Barack Hussein Obama.

Please vote for John Sidney McCain!

Anonymous said...

And I don't see how someone could have this information and vote for the McCain-Palin ticket. I am voting for Sen. Obama. Either way, all of us should pray and seek the Lord's direction on how to cast our votes.

Anonymous said...

Two comments, two diametrically opposed positions. Christians can come down on opposite sides of a political position, especially one as complex as candidates.

This info doesn't change how I'd already planned to vote, but does make me hope that whoever is elected has better sense than some in the past.

There may have been a time when our country could have been a peacemaker between them. Not now. Nor do we have the resources to get involved in another war.

War is seldom the answer. Blessed are the peacemakers. Let's pray that there are some.

Susie

M. Steve Heartsill said...

Seems like I've read a story somewhere that seemed to foretell events like this...now, where was that story?

Anonymous said...

Emotionally, many Americans will always want to see Israel protected. The interesting thing is that Israel is planning to initiate an attack on Iran. Can we assume the following:

First, Iran's comments about Irael have led Israel to consider and prepare for a "pre-emptive strike".

Secondly, the secretive Bush administration has led Israel to expect American help: some already has been given apparently as "Georgia and the U.S. were providing assistance and intelligence to help Israel in the attack."

So, Iran gets Israel into attack-mode; then the Bush Administration in an effort to stir the pot, offers assistance; pulling out after Russia says "No Way".

OR, is the Israeli government in its news report, trying to rally the citizens of the United States to openly back Israel. As we know, many of our citizen have great love for Israel and will put pressure on our government to respond aggressively.

Very complex. Could lead to World War III. Very good reasons why U.S. backed off of support: we're broke and our military (God Bless Them) have been badly over-stretched by the Iraq War.

So, the new leader of "resolve and strength" is needed. We can all agree. May I add that it would be wise if this leader was also a man of proven intelligence and the temperment to respond to the situation wisely and appropriately, taking ALL reality factors into consideration. Hopefully, our new leader will have a good grasp on reality.

"Strength and resolve" are paramount but not exclusively so. Hitler had "strength and resolve" in abundance, but no just and wise vision. Quite the opposite.

What other qualities are needed in this new leader that will help guide that "strength and resolve" and so lead to a course of wisdom?

The coming debates will help. Watching the actual speeches of the candidates will provide unfiltered information. Spin from media is predictable, but not helpful in forming judgment. All of above will only benefit those voters who seek further clarification on the candidates.

Anonymous said...

I don't see how someone could have this information and vote for the McCain-Palin ticket. I am voting for Sen. Obama- Biden ticket, because they will keep us out of this conflict. We need someone to lead us in another direction, like talking to those who are heads of countries that don’t agree with us. To get some respect without having to hold a gun in our hands! To see if there may be some coming ground were we could meet? Jesus talk to those who opposed him why not the good old USA? May all of us pray and seek the Lord's direction on how to cast our votes.
Art

Anonymous said...

Dear Lord, please help us all. And help some to not believe all the lies and distortions, and to know the difference between right and wrong in Your eyes.

Lord help me to realize that you are in control and your Word says "I will bless those who bless thee and curse those who curse thee" (Israel) and also that your Word teaches "those who shed innocent blood, their blood will be shed".

Lord help people discern between a man who believes in the sanctity of life and the one who believes in the culture of death.

Lord help people to recognize the difference between a proven leader who is a true hero and the other person.

And Lord, I pray for those who will probably come on here and attack me for this prayer.

Lord God, Oh Creator of life, the One who knows when life truly begins, have mercy on us all.

Dave Miller said...

Interesting that when politics becomes the issue, everyone starts writing anonymously.

rmkton said...

Response to prayer of the Anonymous....when we clothe our political views in the cloak of a prayer what this says to me is that "anyone who would consider themselves a Christian would see things the way I do...the way God does."

This oversimplies the issue. McCain may be pro-life in policy but he is not going to do anything about it...and he knows it.

Shane "George" Lambert said...

McCain says he would nominate judges like Thomas, Roberts, Alito & Scalia. Obama says he would nominate judges more like Ginsberg.

The president can't do anything about abortion, but his Supreme Court picks certainly can. For that reason alone, McCain is clearly the better choice for those who believe pro-life issues are of paramount importance.

And as for the Israel/Iran situation, that one seems to me to be a "no-brainer". McCain sees the Iranian threat for the evil that it is. Obama has said that Iran is a small country that we needn't worry that much about.

And he says McCain is out of touch.

Anonymous said...

What does the idea of "sanctity of life" and "culture of death" say about those who start wars without justification? I'm not justifying Saddam Hussein's rule, but there were other dictators just as bad if not worse.

Did you know that many if not most Iraqi Christians have fled that country as a result of that war? They are being persecuted by those who make connections between Christianity and the U.S. This idea isn't helped by calling the war a crusade and calling the U.S. a Christian nation.

Susie

rmkton said...

Appreciate your perspective George ...however the appointing of conservative judges is not change the outcome even if Roe is overturned (which is doubtful). If you read the Senate confirmation hearing proceedings of justices Roberts and Alito (probably two of the most conservative justices beside Scalia) both reaffirmed that although the decision in Roe v. Wade was faulty based upon the law...the ultimate decision is the prevailing law of the land has set a precedent that has stood the test of time and for that is to be kept. So I would not get your hopes up about it...even if Roe is overturned some day.

McCain knows this....and for this he gets your vote.

Saved said...

Israel aside Mr. Anonymous that will still vote for Obama, I fail to see how it is that you can square your "Christianity" with the wholesale slaughter of innocent life of which your Mr. Obama is one of the grossest violators of. No, the fact remains that if you can support this man in the face of the knowledge of his murderous activism you do not belong to Christ. I do not say this to be hard but for you to wake up and examine yourself and realize that you are not in the faith before you waltz before the throne of God thinking that you are His when in reality you are not. Repent and believe on the gospel and not merely give mental ascent to a few key points of facts about the person of Christ. Christianity is not a religion, religion is man trying to make himself presentable to God through his own means and his own actions and Christianity is a relationship with God, having no confidence in the flesh and putting all of your faith, hope and trust in Jesus Christ, Who was God in human flesh. There were those who believed that Christ was exactly who He said that he was and still refused to follow Him. I would not have you to be deceived and that is why I implore you to turn to Christ and be saved from the wrath of a thrice Holy God.
http://repentbelieve.blogspot.com/
Mike Anderson

Shane "George" Lambert said...

Thanks for the response, rmkton.

Putting aside the pro-life/pro-choice arguments, it is clear that Roe v. Wade was and is simply bad law (especially considering that it's not the Supreme Court's job to make laws but rather to interpret them). The correct thing would be for Roe v. Wade to be overturned and the issue left in the hands of the individual states. I don't believe that is out of the realm of possibility, and I don't believe McCain does, either.

As far as my vote is concerned, Obama's refusal to support the Born Alive Infant Protection Act tells me everything I need to know about him as a potential president. I realize that others won't necessarily share my conviction, but that's how I feel.

rmkton said...

Saved:

These kind of judgments and statements make me want to hang my head in shame..."if you can support this man in the face of the knowledge of his murderous activism you do not belong to Christ."

With this statement we have clearly created a pharisaical line in the sand and decided who belongs to Christ and who does not based upon a narrow view of life. I am not for abortion but with this statement you ignored the cries of the innocent Iraqis.

rmkton said...

George...so let's say for the sake of argument that you are right in that McCain appoints conservative justices and eventually Roe v. Wade is overturned and the issue is left in the hands of the individual states...how does that promote life if some states approve it and some not?...hard for me to imagine CA or NY creating laws against it...so we have just made it harder to get an abortion. Let's face it, we will never end abortion even if outlawed in all 50 states (which won't happen). I think a better idea is to look at the underlying reasons why people have them and try to do something about that. This to me is being truly pro-life.

Anonymous said...

I remember when we voted George W. Bush in as "God's Choice".

So now we need to vote for John McCain, for the same reason?

I wonder what God's new choice has in store for us?

When will people stop letting a political party manipulate their faith?

I think we owe God an apology.

Saved said...

To say that man can be for abortion and still be "in Christ" makes me want to hang my head. That is off the charts insane and goes to show as to why there will be MANY who are told depart from me for I do not know you.

Jack Allen said...

I am sick to death of neocons hiding behind the sanctity of life when it comes to Republican polictics and then TOTALLY ignoring the way President Bush and his party has demonstrated a totally barbaric, and UNBIBLICAL approach to war. Where's the sanctity in life of all the thousands of INNOCENT Iraqi citizens, NOT to mention our own American troops.
Either you believe in the sanctity life or you don't...you can't pick and choose WHOSE life is worth saving. YOU BLIND HYPOCRITES!!
And "SAVED"...where in the WORLD do you come off looking down your condesending nose and calling into questions the salvation of others! You my brother should take a long look in the mirror and see that HUGE PLANK you got in your own eye!!!
May God have pity on us all...

Shane "George" Lambert said...

Mike (Saved),

Although I may not agree with rmkton's choice for president, I'm afraid I have to agree that your post crossed a line. It is not for us to stand in judgment about the condition of another's soul. Although I believe a vote for Obama would be a huge mistake, I don't believe that it determines whether or not someone truly knows Christ.

Saved said...

For the record Bush is no brother in Christ any more than Mccain or Obama. God is the one that has placed those who are in authority over us and He is does so according to the council of His own will.

Anonymous said...

Is it wise to tell other Americans that they will not be saved if they vote a certain way?

Who are we to sit in judgment on another Christian? No offense, but isn't that a little above our pay grade?

Very Republican. What "threat level" is this? Stirring up the ultimate fear as a form of political manipulation?

My dear Christians, are we not better than that? May God forgive us our foolish ways.

Shane "George" Lambert said...

rmkton,

First of all, overturning Roe v. Wade and leaving it in the hands of the states would simply be our government working the way it was intended to.

Secondly, I concede to you that some states will vote to legalize abortion. As big of a travesty as that would be, it pales in comparison to our current situation where states that would outlaw abortion are said to be denying someone their constitutional rights.

Last time I checked, neither the Bill of Rights nor our Constitution guarantee anyone an abortion. Of course, the pro-choice crowd likes to talk about a "constitutional right to an abortion", but they must have failed to read our founding documents.

Saved said...

Are we not able to recognise them by their fruits? Is that not in the word of God along with do not judge and the plank in your eye? Does it take such a great amount of discernment to see that if someone is for the murder of babies that they are not in Christ.

Anonymous said...

Before we commit any more of our prescious sons into "the valley of death", for purposes of another "Crusade", we can ask God to quiet our fears and give us courage and wisdom.

I don't think George W. Bush was anymore "God's Choice" than John McCain is.

How can we know that mind of God?
If it's true that a candidate for president is chosen by God; then George W. Bush was the choice of a lesser god. We shame ourselves.

Shane "George" Lambert said...

rmkton,

One more thing:

You said that we need "to look at the underlying reasons why people have (abortions) and try to do something about that."

That's one area in which we can both agree.

Bob Cleveland said...

Somebody ought to point out again (I have a Soap Box with this label on it) that God told Habakkuk ... who'd been griping to God how bad things were in Israel, which wasn't even killing babies yet, to my knowledge ... that HE (God) was raising up the Babylonians to bring a bit of correction to the land. GOD was raising up the period equivalent of Nazi Germany and Muslim Terrorists, all rolled up in one mob, to go to work for HIM.

We've been looking at the mess for a long time. Why wouldn't we think this election is part of The Plan?

Bob Cleveland said...

And I can flat guarantee you that I've never said the words "My Muslim faith".

One candidate has.

Anonymous said...

As a mother of a son in uniform, I certainly hope that, this time, we use both our hearts and our heads before choosing who to vote for.

Remember, if you value life, we need to have something left of a world to bring life into. And, then, once life is here, it must be respected. I hope we use ALL of our God-given gifts to choose our next president.

I worry about this country as a mom. If it's true that we get the leadership that we deserve, then the last eight years have been an indictment about the state of our country.

Which candidate will help us to make a better America so that we can welcome and nurture new life?

Shane "George" Lambert said...

Saved,

Not to get into a theological argument, but in Matthew 7 when Jesus talked about "knowing them by their fruits", He was referring to false prophets.

It's true that sometimes a person's actions will reveal a lost condition, but that's not what this is about. Although I don't agree with those voting for Obama and their reasoning, they have convictions that are just as strongly held as yours and mine.

Rather than condemning those who disagree with us, let's state our case in a way that promotes a healthy conversation.

That's all I'm saying.

Saved said...

if you do not believe you are condemned already

Saved said...

It is beyond me as to how some professing to be Christians can go on the offensive when another brother has the “audacity of hope” that the sanctity of life would be of the utmost importance to genuine Christians. If I cry out for some real perspective on who it is that we call a brother in Christ it is shouted down as though I am a judgmental bigot. You think that just because someone makes a profession of faith in Christ that that is it he be in Christ after all he said he was didn’t he? Jack Allen, you said “...you can't pick and choose WHOSE life is worth saving.” And yet this is what Obama does. He places value on life in this war and devalues life in the womb

Saved said...

what is someone that professes Christ and does not hold to the truth if he is not a false prophet?

Anonymous said...

The son of man who tended goats in Africa becomes the president of the Harvard Law Review.

The son and grandson of admiral becomes a senator.

One of these men will lead our country.

If I thought that God had a choice here, I would think that his money would be on that first guy.

Saved said...

wow! What?

Saved said...

The devil came as an angel of light and his have no problem pretending to be believers. Obama is a lying Muslim and McCain say that his faith is an extremely private matter to him. That flies in the face of the great commission. Jesus said, If you deny before men I will deny you before my father. There is no such thing as private faith if you serve that God of scripture.

Shane "George" Lambert said...

Saved,

When a person gets saved, that doesn't mean that they are automatically programmed to think just like you (or me for that matter).

And for the record, you're the one who went on the offensive when you summarily condemned all Obama supporters to hell. A better response would've been to tell them why you believe a vote for Obama violates your Christian convictions.

I'm not going to keep debating you on this. If you could only see that you are doing your cause more harm by responding the way you have.

And by the way, I would never question your salvation. Please don't question mine.

Anonymous said...

Several days ago I received a forwarded email urging recipients to pray for McCain and Palin and using terms straight from Scripture about those who oppose them like "wicked" and "like a roaring lion".

Now I am all for praying for people. The Bible even tells us to pray for enemies (when did you last pray for such as Osama bin Laden?) though my prayers for such as them are mainly that God will touch their hearts.

But to cloak an outright political push as a prayer request is wrong. Besides those two, they all, Obama, Biden, Ron Paul, Ralph Nader, George Bush, Dick Cheney, etc. need to be prayed for. As I remember, Obama is the only candidate who has had a threat made against him, so maybe he needs the most prayers.

But what got to me about the whole thing is that it was forwarded to me by a friend who is not a Christian with her comments (she's a Democrat). What kind of witness is this?

Argue all you want about politics, and I will too. I have a candidate's sign in my yard, and plan to work to help the people I want to get elected. But don't pretend God is on one side or the other. As for us trying to be on God's side, that's good, but we often have imperfect understanding.

There are issues on which Christians might legitimately choose sides, but even so, too many times they are oversimplified by proponents or opponents. But candidates are complex people, not to mention sinners like the rest of us.

So vote as you wish, support whatever candidate you will; it's a free country. Just don't claim God's voice when you speak these things.

Susie

Saved said...

When a person is regenerated / born again / brought from death to life, he now hates sin and everything that exalts its self above the knowledge of God. The thing you onced loved you now hate and the God you once hated and rejected you now love and esteem. We are to be obedient to the word of God. Not be concerned about if we are coming off PC or not . Obedience is the only validation of your salvation. It is the only possible proof that you recognize the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Because if there's no obedience then you're confessing Jesus is Lord is just so much verbal exercise. It's not as simple as just making a decision, signing a card, raising your hand. Salvation is a recognition of a divine standard, a subsequent overwhelming sense of sinfulness, a pleading for God's mercy to receive His righteousness, because you desire to fulfill His Word. For those people who say/live, well I'm coming to Christ, and I want to be saved but I don't want to get into all that obedience stuff. Then you're not a Christian. You must do as Christ first commanded us to do and that is to repent and believe the gospel. Obey what it is that you read.

rmkton said...

Saved...clearly you see right and wrong better than many others commenting on this blog post. My congrats.

Anonymous said...

Lot of stone-throwing going on here. Literally.
I live in a neighborhood where I am AFRAID to put up an Obama sign. I guess my neighbors are "saved"?

Saved said...

Are you saying that because I contend for the veracity and integrity of the gospel which tells us that we are not our own? It does not matter what your or my opinion is on any given matter. It only matters what the word of God says.

Saved said...

people in the church are eager to conform the thruth of the gospel to fit the age in which we live. to make it relevant to our culture. this is the exact opposite of what is to take place. as Christians we are to spread the gospel in such a way as to cause those in the culture to conform to the word of God.

Anonymous said...

I've tried to be non-partisan in my comments here, even though I know where Jesus is on this. It was a donkey, not an elephant that He rode into Jerusalem. :-)

But I must refute the comment that Obama is a Muslim. He is a Christian and was a member for many years in the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago. Say what you will about that church's doctrines and controversial statements about its present and former pastors, but it is a Christian church.

The Muslim statement is just one of the many lies that has been circulated about him. There are always lies and partisan statements in any election, but stick to factual information. Willful ignorance is not a Christian trait. Go to snopes.com for more info.

Susie

Anonymous said...

Dear "Saved",
No, nothing so personal as that, thank God. It's only that I feel as though I have been given some insight into the thinking of my neighbors. That maybe sometimes the strongly held beliefs of people spill over into picking up stones. I think in the Gospel, Jesus doesn't tell us NOT to throw stones: He just reminds us to consider if WE are perfect, without sin, before casting our stone. Very wise of Him, don't you think?


I am glad that you are sure of your salvation. I wish to be saved from being unkind. I'm sorry if you think I commented personally.

Wayne Smith said...

Bob C. and All,

If the ones that are reading this comment and profess to be True Christians, I have a Question.
How can a Man who professes to be a Christian sit in a Church for 20 years and listen to a Preacher, who Preaches HATE????

Wayne Smith

Shane "George" Lambert said...

Someone in my church asked me on Wednesday night if I believed Obama was a Muslim.

I told him that whether he was Muslim, Christian, or something else, there's enough things I DO know about him that are red flags on my radar screen.

NativeVermonter said...

Are there Believers today who really, genuinely believe that a woman has a right to choose? Are there Christians today who have been purchased by His Blood that will even contend for the right for a woman to choose?

They may claim His Name but I’m just wondering… has He claimed theirs. I’m ready to be taken to the woodshed but if someone claims to be a born again, blood bought Christian and they feel that a woman should have the right to end their baby’s life…then they will not receive my hand in friendship. I know big loss right? Although with repentance they would. An unbeliever would always be extended the hand of friendship however.

Since Saved is taking some heat I thought I’d join him :)

Saved said...

Obama's is not Christian in any way shape or form. His church is not a christian church they lifted up and honored luis farakhan as a great man of god. This pig says that the "historical jesus was only a type of the real jesus to come. he says that the messiah was not born in bethehem but in gorgia in his home town. Obama's church glorified a man who says that he is the messiah that the historical jesus is only a foretelling of the real messiah which he himself is. if that is what passes its self off as christian in your book examine yourself to be sure that you are in the faith

rmkton said...

...am always a little wary when I hear statements like "It does not matter what your or my opinion is on any given matter. It only matters what the word of God says." presumably because they usually mean not what the word of God says but what they say it says. You don't have to go far to realize that very committed believers come out on different sides of very fundamental issues based upon their interpretation of what the Bible says (i.e. read the comments to Wade's blog post "Will God Choose Not To Save My Loved Ones?")

also interests me when folks say that "people in the church are eager to conform the truth of the gospel to fit the age in which we live." Why don't we have women wear head coverings? If this is in the Bible and commanded that women do it why don't we enforce it? We reluctantly concede it is cultural but then quickly close the door to other things expressed in the Bible that might be cultural.

When people give simplistic answers like "we just need to follow the Bible" it shows me that they have not really thought about the implications and complexties and have languished into intellectual (and therefore spiritual) laziness.

Saved said...

the ten commandments are a reflection of God's holy and rightous character. whether a woman wears a covering does not violate that character. whether or not you contend that it is ok to murder babies does.

Anonymous said...

I always wonder about people who say they just need to follow the Bible; and then they go the church on SUNDAY?

Like it or not, we are a part of a Christian tradition. The early Church fathers did NOT agree about when life began in the womb.

Depending on what part of Christian tradition you choose to uphold, for what ever reason: there is some history in Christianity for open debate on the subject.

And no, medical science has NOT clarified the matter.

Saved said...

that statement is just plain wrong. what makes you think that there was any confussion as to when life started with the church fathers?

Shane "George" Lambert said...

I have a Christian friend (with lots of fruit as evidence of his salvation) who I believe is leaning toward voting for Obama. And he is VERY MUCH pro-life!

His reasoning: He feels Obama will do more for the poor in our country. He feels Obama is the better choice for the "least of these". He feels this is just as important of an issue as his pro-life beliefs.

Now, I disagree with him. I think the policies of the left do more to create poverty in this country than they do to alleviate it. However, I would never question his salvation because of what he believes politically.

You tell me: Is my friend lost? Not based on what I know about him. We just happen to disagree.

rmkton said...

Nativevermonter,

Will try to explain my position. I support Obama but am not pro-abortion...even though Obama supports abortion rights for women. Still to come back to one issue (abortion) is not a fully pro-life stance. In fact I think one could make the argument that Obama is more pro-life than McCain if you look at the whole picture of what it means (to me at least) to be pro-life. Let's face it McCain cannot and will not end legalized abortion in the U.S.

So McCain takes this stance, gets your vote and does not have to deliver on anything...sound familiar? i.e. Bush. Conservative supreme court justices are not going to change this.

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Lambert,
I don't believe that your friend is "lost". He just believes that it is important to care for others. I think God knows your friend's name and will receive him as one of His children.

I think this man is fortunate to have you for a friend. You see beyond his theology and look into his heart. I think God does that, too.

Saved said...

there is not one gospel for me and one gospel for you and one gospel for your friend. there is but one gospel and we are to live it out in complete submission to the Lordship of Christ our savior. we do not get into bed with those who are known and revealed haters of God simply because they are not all bad. it makes no difference whether Obama will help the poor or not. He labors to bring about the murder of innocnet life. you friend would do well to think on that. Ps i have to remind myself that this is a christian blog.

Anonymous said...

The number one reason to vote for
John McCain is Barack Obama.

Shane "George" Lambert said...

rmkton,

You and I will have to agree to disagree about the Supreme Court justices. I think the responsibility to nominate judges is one of the most important jobs a president has, and one that has the most lasting results.

Personally, I believe that Bush's greatest legacy (despite all of his problems) will be his picks for the Supreme Court. We need more justices who will interpret the law based on the Constitution. We've had too many in the past fifty years who've found things in our Constitution that are clearly not there.

If Obama's model justice is Ruth Bader Ginsberg, then I fear for the direction the high court will take if he becomes president and gets to nominate one or more to the bench.

And it's not just about abortion. Activist judges cause all kinds of problems in this country when they overstep their authority and legislate from the bench. For me, McCain is clearly the better choice.

rmkton said...

saved...we need to be open to people who think differently than us. I find your approach to others rather like the Pharisees and not like Christ.

this attitude is what drives folks away from the church. It is why these days I like to refer to myself as christian (small "c") rather than a Christian if being a Christian means I have to think like what you expressed in these comments.

Shane "George" Lambert said...

Saved,

Who said anything about different gospels for different people? Did you even read what I wrote?

What if my friend questioned your salvation because he felt that you didn't care enough about the least of these. He might say, "Jesus said, 'whatever you have not done to the least of these, you've not done to me. Cast them into the lake of fire prepared for the devil and his angels.' You, sir, are obviously lost because you don't support the proposals of Barack Obama to combat poverty in this country."

I know that sounds absurd, but no more absurd than you questioning the salvation of those who support Obama. Their reasons for supporting him may be just as rooted in the Bible as yours are for not supporting him.

Again, I don't agree with their conclusions, but I don't condemn them, either.

Saved said...

first of all this is a Christian blog site so my answers are not so much in keeping with the pharisees tone towards others by with Christ tone towards the pharisees. It is the gospel that calls men to repentacne not my disposition to the heresy that I read from so called Chistians on this. I also get the feeling that your chrianity is spelled with a small c because you chirst is spelled with small c

Anonymous said...

The one thing I don't hear in the words of "Saved" is any compassion for those that you feel will be damned.

Saved said...

I apologise for the way that I made my last point. that was over the top.

Shane "George" Lambert said...

Anybody remember how this post was originally about Iran and Israel? I had quite forgotten until I went back and re-read it.

Saved said...

remember i am talking to brother and sisters in Christ and not the lost. if i were i would not water down the truth so that they would be more likely to make a "decission for Christ" we are not to be like the world with the same standards of right and wrong. the truth is not relative it is absolute and you need to study to find out where God comes down on any point and that is where you are to come down. you do not have that luxury to say what is right for me may not be right for you.

Anonymous said...

Wow! These posts are interesting -to the point of crossing into the absurd at times.

Here are my thoughts.

Let's stipulate that both candidates and their vp choices claim to be Christian and treat them as such.

We cannot get in their heads and hearts and figure out anyting beyond that.

Of all 4, Palin probably has a religious background that is most similar to all of the people commenting here. To me, that is of no consequence, because I am not into identity politics. If I were, either Huckabee or "Bring Back" Jimmy Carter would work. I would not vote for either as President.

Let's don't guess about whom God likes.

Does God like Obama because his dad was a goat herder? Is he for Palin because she birth a Downs Syndrome baby? Let's be humble enough to not claim to know the mind of God.

The difference in the expereince of these candidates could not be more different, if for no other reason that McCain has lived almost twice as long as Obama, and has a personal experiences that can be topped by few people.

The question is how these men will perform once they are in office and what direction they will take us.

I will also weigh in on the judicial selection issue. It's amazing how sophisticated the voters have become on this.

None of my ancestors would have conceived of voting for a president on the basis what type of Supreme Court justices he would pick. But with the last 50 years of court activiity that ushered in a much more active federal judiciary, people are beginning to think that the judicicary has become the supreme branch of government such that it affects how they vote for President.

It is clearly possible that Roe v. Wade will be overturned or subtantially modified in the future. It was decided in 1973. The language of Roe itself and the science involved open the possibility of substantial modification, even aside from the idea that a new court might just do away with the right of privacy in the U.S. Constitution.

Clearly, the type of justices that sit on the court will impact abortion and a host of other issues.

Those issues include:

Partial birth abortion (I believe the court ruled in a 5 to 4 vote a year or two ago that a prohibition against that was constitutional). McCain's picks would not probably not overturn this. Obama's would.

The incorporation of foreign law into decisions about the U.S. Constitution. McCain's picks would probably not cite foreign laws as a basis for decisions (unless it is a treaty case or a case involving foreign law). Obama's would.

Judicial review of the conduct of a war. Historically, the court has not gotten involved in the prosecution of a war, as the Pres is Commander in Chief, and the Congress declares war and funds it. Look for the future to include possible challenges to block invasions or military actions by court order. McCain's picks would probably not entertain this. Obama's probably would.

Related to the above - the treatment of enemy combatants and prisoners of war. The court has already ventured into this arena for the first time in history - just recently, giving the detainees at GTMO the right to petition U.S. District Courts. McCain's picks would probably be against this. Obama's would probably keep this right and may expand it.

Immigration/voting. One issue that is really big in think tank circles now is "Do national boundaries or citizenship really matter in political engagement?" Newer theories say no. They say that as a fundamental human right, people should be able to move wherever they want, and that a corresponding fundamental right is to be able vote and have a say so in the community that you live in, such that formal citizenship is an unnecessary barrier to participation. It's hard to see how this issue may present itself to the court or how it would ever gain acceptance. McCain's picks probably would not go for this. Obama's picks would be more open to it.

Agency authority to write rules and enforce them. This first came up in the New Deal. The old court said that the Consitution said Congress can make laws, but it didn't say anything about administrative agencies. So, they struck down lots of agency rules and regs. The new court came along and created a whole body of law empowering agency action. McCain's picks would be more restrictive on this. Obama's would be more open.

Homosexual rights. The Supreme Court found no right in the constitution to homosexual sex in 1988 (I think). It reversed itself a few years later, and found one in the 5 to 4 decision. Kennedy wrote for the majority. McCain's picks would be less likely to support this. Obama's would be more likely to support it.

Gay marriage. The activists have not taken this to the US Supreme Court because they cannot count 5 votes in their favor presently. They are pressing cases in the gay friendly states with the hope to create a body of state law before the issue goes to the US SCt. McCain's picks are unlikely to find a right to Gay Marriage in the U.S. Constitution. Obama's would be more inclined to. That would mean the end of the federal DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act). Would also have huge implications for the adoption of children.

Home Schooling vs. state and federal mandates for compulsory state education. Home schooling is a big deal nowadays. It's done by all types of folks. In the early days, homeschoolers faced a lot of legal challenges. McCain's picks would probably be more open to alternative educational choice. Obama's would be probably be more supportive of state action.

Federalism - this relates to the relationship between the states and the federal government. McCain's picks would probably be more restrictive against federal intervention. Obama's would probably be open to it.

Right to own firearms. This was just decided in a 5 to 4 decision (I think - it might have been 6 to 3). McCain's picks would be more likely to support an individual right to own firearms. Obama's would see that right as owned by the state. Obama has said that he agreed with this decision. But when he describes the type judges he admires and would pick, they are the judges who voted against this right.

Church/state issues. This is really broad and includes everthing from public prayers at inaugurations, football games, at the flag pole before school, the rights of persons to hold and display religious symbols and personal things at work, the right of the government to fund religious people doing non-religous work (e.g. soup kitchen) as well as non-religious groups doing the same type of work, the right of a doctor or nurse to refuse to perform an abortion for religious reasons. McCain's picks would probably support an accommodation approach -not advancing religion, but treating religious groups and issues like all other groups and issues. Obama's picks would probably lean toward a strict separationist viewpoint.

Statutes are written by congress, enforced by the executive branch, and interpreted by the courts. McCain's picks would be more likely to interpret the words of the constitution and statutes. Obama's would be more likely to see the consitution as a "living document" that grows and changes, and they would decide how it grows and changes.

Whomever wins this November will need our prayers and support and not the snide comments that are directed toward our current commander in chief and others.

Louis

rmkton said...

Saved, apology accepted...I have to admit that it was not that long ago that I would have been "amening" your point of view...but I have come to see things differently in the last couple of years that have made me re-examine my view of things. I am 48 years old BTW.

I still love Jesus...but how I see the meaning of that has changed over time...God's spirit had been speaking to me for some time about the poor and neglected. I ignored it as long as I could but God would not let me go...so I started volunteering in a local soup kitchen where every Saturday we feed over 100 homeless, drug addicts, prostitutes, kids, elderly and just lonely...which has given me a different perspective. I don't say these this to toot my own horn but just to give you a glimpse of why I see things the way I do (similar to George's friend).

It is hard to explain to others why I feel God has called me to do this but when I do the sense of God's presence is very real.

So we may come out differently on issues and you may not be able to understand other's point of view but when we finally cross the river...it will not matter.

B Nettles said...

It's both humorous and sad to see the comment list degenerate so quickly into political diatribes. It reminds me of some church committee meetings I've been in.

Susie, thanks for your comment. It seems that you have maintained perspective about presidential politics.

Wade said: The United States, no matter what they say now, will not sit on the sidelines.

For this reason, all of us ought to be very sure of the reasons why we vote for whom we desire to see President. More is at stake than just the economy.


I completely agree! Then each person needs to realize that we might be decide wrongly because we all are still subject to selfish pride and the lust of the flesh. And neither Obama nor McCain will do any better than 50/50. I do have a preference for well considered reasons, but my data could turn out to be lies and my analysis is definitely biased by my humanity.

My only hope: Read Psalm 11!..."How can you say to my soul, 'Flee like a bird...' The Lord is in His holy temple...the Lord is righteous; He loves righteousness; The upright will behold His face."

Political war or political peace offer no hope for they are the works of man. Be "sure" (as much as one can be) of the reasons, vote, then trust the Lord to protect your soul from this fallen world. In the Lord I take refuge. That should be everyone's politics!

Chris said...

To Saved:

You contend that Obama is evil for supporting abortion. McCain supports the continuation of a war which also causes death. Is the taking of life through abortion really different than the taking of life through war? Either way a life which God created and ordained is destroyed. Therefore both candidates are guilty of the murderous activism which you detest.

You are correct in noting that there is one gospel, but how that Gospel truly works itself out is something Christians have contended for ages. I somehow doubt that you or I or anyone else on this blog will come up with the definitive answer. Therefore, many God-fearing Christians will vote both ways thinking that the gospel is best fulfilled by the policies of the candidate they choose, even if they cannot support the candidates full platform (the alternatie is, of course, not voting).

Where both sides are wrong is that they are trying to get the nation state of America to conform itself to appropriate and propogate the Gospel (a gospel that goes against its best interests). They are not relying on the church to be the Kingdom which presents the gospel to the world regardless of nationalistic concerns.

Where one votes for McCain to outlaw abortion because God is against it, but they are not acting in such a way BEYOND their vote to assist those who would otherwise pursue abortions, we have shamed our Gospel and sold it out to America. Where we vote for Obama because we think he will help the poor and oppressed in American society but REFUSE to part with our own time and money and comfort in the process, we have shamed our Gospel and sold it out to America to use and twist as it may.

Neither party, neither candidate, is the will of God. It is His body, His church, which is the will of God in this earth. It is in the church where we make our distinctive set of values known to the world. Not in our vote.

Saved said...

I agree that we are to be compassionate and loving and to reach out to everyone that is in need of love in a world gone crazy and I do my own out reach as we are compelled to do. But Christ did not call us to a social gospel where we ease their pain, we are to do in this world exactly what Christ came to do. Although He could have fed and clothed everybody by His miricles He didn't. He came to seek and to save the lost and the lost come to Christ as they hear the true gospel and not some todays seeker friendly version of the gospel.

Shane "George" Lambert said...

Well friends, I've enjoy this conversation, but I must go pick up my son at kindergarten.

I wanted to say that I have no ill will toward anybody on this blog. If some of my responses came across as angry, that wasn't my intention. I'm just passionate about my views.

Thanks for the discussion!

Saved said...

The same here and God bless you brother,
Mike

Shane "George" Lambert said...

Thanks Mike. God bless you too, my brother.

rmkton said...

gotta run as well but enjoyed the interaction. Parting words...

"Now is it God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, put his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit guaranteeing what is to come." I Cor 1:21

Mike

Anonymous said...

Hey guys:

That is the way to wrap up a blog. Love all the kind words and apologies.

If I were a non-Christian reading this blog, that would impress me.

Louis

ezekiel said...

Zec 12:2 "Behold, I am about to make Jerusalem a cup of staggering to all the surrounding peoples. The siege of Jerusalem will also be against Judah.
Zec 12:3 On that day I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples. All who lift it will surely hurt themselves. And all the nations of the earth will gather against it.

At some point, Israel will become too heavy to support. Regardless of the name on the oval office.

Bob Cleveland,

It is part of the plan. Great comment.

Mr. Heartsill,

Most likely you read it in the OT prophets.

Zech is full of it and references there take you to Isa_59:19-21; Eze_39:29

When all nations fail to support Israel and begin to gather against her, it looks a lot like what we see in EZ 38-39.

We are not that far from dropping Israel like a heavy rock. Either because we don't have the stomach or political will for another, larger scale fight or because we have a Muslim in the White House.

Steve said...

Interestingly, the US Air Force very publicly retired its F-117 Nighthawks and just kind of rolled them away in some big hangers earlier this year, out of sight and mind.

Just like any surviving F-14 Tomcats that can look just like Iran's original model Tomcats from the late 1970s. Just rolled out of sight. Hmmm....

A resolute armed forces presence is definitely going to be important in maintaining peace for the U.S. and its allies in the next decades, and we have seen how Presidents who just hungered for the White House to be known as a President damaged our very security.

Joe White... said...

I realize I am getting into this discussion late, but I did want to address one thing.

Chris you wrote... "You contend that Obama is evil for supporting abortion. McCain supports the continuation of a war which also causes death. Is the taking of life through abortion really different than the taking of life through war? Either way a life which God created and ordained is destroyed. Therefore both candidates are guilty of the murderous activism which you detest."

I don't think you have a proper interpretation of the commandment thou shalt not kill. The word for kill is( רצח, râtsach, raw-tsakh').
A primitive root; properly meaning to to dash in pieces, especially to murder. When God said thou shalt not murder, He was talking about the taking of innocent life... not the killing of animals, not the killing of someone in self-defense, not the killing of someone by capital punishment, and not the killing of someone in war.

So; unless they start giving unborn babies machine guns to fight the abortonists, the two are not one and the same. No one is in Iraq that did not sign their name on the dotted line, and the majority of the soldiers will tell you they are proud of the job they are doing.

Saved said...

Thing are rampimg up and Russia is going to be the major player. Putin's pres. is over he makes himself the PM. We have tension with our neighbors in south america russia is there. Tension with Iran russia is there too. Rusias agression with Gorgia is a smoke screen to control the airfeilds that Israel there so that they do not attack Iran from there. I wonder what that region of the country was called a long time ago. It might be a little place known as Magog.

Anonymous said...

If the Bush administration has exhausted and stretched our military with two wars; McCain will still be able to count on Blackwater in the coming fight with Iran and Russia. Someone was thinking ahead.

Saved said...

the US is not tapped out by any means as far as resorces go. There is alway conscription. I feel that the anti-christ is poised and waiting and america is not mentioned in prophecy because we will be a none player as we will be judged for all of our unrightous deeds and thumbing our nose at a holy and rightous God. If are not then God will need to apologise to sodom and gemora.

Anonymous said...

To "Saved",
Are you a member of the same church denomination as Sarah Palin?

Tom Parker said...

Joe:

I think you are wrong. Taking a life is wrong whether it is before someone is born or after they are born.

Saved said...

not by a longshot. Why what would lead you to think that?

Anonymous said...

From the WaPo"

"Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.), an Obama supporter, sent out a reply to the NOW e-mail yesterday afternoon, defending his record on abortion and criticizing the e-mail as an effort to "to falsely attack and artificially divide us."

"The facts are clear -- in the Illinois state senate, choice advocates asked strong pro-choice legislators like Senator Obama to vote 'present' on Republican-designed bills like a ban on partial birth abortion to protect a woman's right to choose," she wrote. "Senator Obama has always had a 100 percent pro-choice rating, and he is the only candidate running for President who stood up and spoke out when South Dakota passed an incredibly restrictive ban on abortion."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/04/AR2008020402980.html

Another important article:

http://www.bpnews.net/bpnews.asp?id=28732&ref=BPNews-RSSFeed0820

I have a friend in Ill in the pro life movement who followed this 'born alive' vote in Ill legislature. Obama and his campaign lied about the neutrality clause and those who have read the bill and followed this for years know it.

Obama effectively voted against allowing those babies born alive to live because he was concerned it would hurt the existing abortion laws.

Anyone who thinks they can 'talk' to Islamic fundamentalists do not understand radical muslims at all and do not understand that culture at all. Bullies only understand power. How quickly we forget Osama bin Laden's very words about us.

Barak is out of his league.


Lydia

Anonymous said...

Dear "Saved",

I asked out of curiosity because I thought I saw similarities in your references to the Anti-Christ and to the, I think it's called, "End Times" war.

I'm just trying to sort out which denominations are thinking about the "end of the world" coming with this battle between Israel, Iran, Russia, and so on.

Saved said...

so where do you land? ru a dispesationalist? amillenial? premillenial?

Joe White... said...

Tom Parker,

All murder is killing, but not all killing is murder. If it was God would be guilty of breaking His own law.

Anonymous said...

Dear "Saved",

I don't understand the terms that you mentioned, so I cannot answer to that part of your question.

Where do I land? Not sure. I believe that I will be judged by the Good Lord when He separates the "sheep" from the "goats". I hope that I don't end up landing in with those goats!

I do feel peaceful, though, and I am not fearful. I believe so strongly in the infinite love, justice, and mercy of our gentle Father. What could be more important?

I do feel that, for me, He will look more at how I care for others than any theology I cling to. And, I believe that of faith, hope, and charity, charity is most important to Him. Where do you "land"?

Peaceful

Saved said...

Peacful,
I land on the fact the prior to being born again I was dead in my sin and justifiably guilty as I was in utter and total rebellion angainst a holy God. When I heard I was completely unable to come to God as a dead is unable to react to stimuli outside of himself.

When I heard the gospel which is to say that when I heard that I was dead in my sin and that I was deserving of eternal punishment in an eteral lake of fire from a just and loving God. When I heard that there was absolutely nothing that I could do to earn eternal life and be reconciled to God. By earn I mean to say that I could not be moral enough, well intentioned enough, that I could not have some artificial sytem where I can say that my good deeds out way my evil deeds, and that if I was left on my own and in that state that I was desdined to suffer forever. Well, that got my attention.


Iheard that God was holy and would not look on sin and that because of that holiness I needed a savior. I needed a savior from the just wrath of God on the sin that I myself was. I also heard that Jesus had paid the sin penalty for the sin that poluted every aspect of my existance.
I realized that the judgment against was air tight and I was guilty and deserved Gods wrath. I cried out repented of my sin and believed that gospel Christ saved me from my sin and I came to Him savior and Lord. I have been bought with a price, I am no longer my own and make every effort to serve Him in what ever capacity He request of me. When I sin against Him it rapes my soul and I repent of my sin and carry on in His service as long as He allows me to do so.
Although theology is not the most important it is extremely important. You must know why it is you believe what it is that you believe.

Anonymous said...

How 'bout them Cowboys??!

Anonymous said...

Dear "Saved",
Thank you for sharing about your faith.

It is said that when we know the name that God calls us; then we know who we are.

I think God calls you "Saved" and I think now you know you are His child, and that He will not abandon you.

Peaceful

Tim G said...

If you mean that Dallas team - YEP! How bout them boys!!!

Your question may just be the most uplifting of all on this string!

Only By His Grace said...

Here we go. What better way for Christian friends to part ways than over politics?

What I look for in a President is a person who is level headed in times of stress;

who shows foresight as well as insight into problems;

who is concerned about the well being of every human being as well as every American;

who is not in the pocket of anyone;

who respects the Constitution as a living and changing document;

who believes in the separation of governmental powers as well as building a good high, thick wall of separation between Religion (Church) and State;

who will tell us the truth and not cook the books so we will believe lies that affect the whole world;

who will say, "Please forgive me. I made a mistake and I was wrong."

Phil in Norman.

Only By His Grace said...

I have read about forty-five comments:

If I were to die to night and stand before God; if He were to ask me, "Phil, why should I let you into My Heaven." Here, according to some of these comments is what I should say.

"Lord God, I voted against abortion every time regardless of the working poor and the uninsured sick."

Bob Cleveland, I enjoy your comments, usually and I do not want to be harst; however, you are not being honest in one of your comments tonight. I think you allowed your passion to over-ride your brain.

Obama is not a Muslim and you know that. You know he belongs to a Christian Church in Chicago. He did not choose his father; God did that. His father left him and his single mother when he was two years old. She had a job working from Hawaii through Indonesia.

Genesis 2:l7,
"And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man BECAME A LIVING SOUL" (COGNITION, VOLITION AND EMOTION).

I am a sixty-eight year old pastor who has been behind a pulpit for forty-six years. I hold to an inerrant or plenary view of the inspiration of the Scriptures with a pre-millennial and a seven dispensational approach some where to the right of C.I. Scofield and just to the left of E.W. Bullinger.

My burring desire is not Dispensationalism but soul winning. I am a six point Calvinist. My first business cards in 1966 read at the top, "To Know Christ and To Make Him Known." I still hold to that motto today.
Phil in Norman.

Bryan Riley said...

Saved,

You may feel like you are talking to brothers and sisters, but this blog is public and a highly read blog. When you search google for something this blog talks about, it will be one of the #1 referred sites. As a result, thousands of nonbelievers read the posts and comments. If they come here and see what appears to be vitriol between people who are supposed to be brothers and sisters and who demonstrate who Jesus is by their love for one another, they will continue to look elsewhere for how to be saved.

To all,

God will be God regardless of who is elected. I pray that people will vote as God leads them to vote, and that they will take that seriously and not just as a platitude. May they truly seek His heart and purpose for the leadership of this country and so vote. He knows who will be President and it doesn't scare Him.

Bob Cleveland said...

Only By His Grace,

I do apologize, but only because the remark was gratuitous. I'd never want to dismiss what he said as meaningless, though.

I've always been taught where there's smoke, there's fire. The fact is that Senator Obama did, indeed, say that, and when he was corrected by the interviewer, the Senator didn't say anything ameliorating about the slip.

I'll consider his remark, along with all the other factual evidence I can find.

Also, we've had non-believers as members of our church. His being in the church he was doesn't mean that much in and of itself.

Pamela said...

For those that believe that the prophecies about Israel are literal it appears that things are indeed lining up. I am convinced that a preemptive strike will take place, especially since Olmert agreed to step down this month or may have already stepped down.

Anonymous said...

Dear Pamela,

It's not the prophecies that worry me, it's the politicians who take them literally and, when they are voted in, might proceed to use their power to 'fulfill' a prophecy.

It would be a good idea to find out as much as we can about the religion of any candidate who might someday have his/her finger on the button.

VIGILANT

Steve said...

I don't know how the U.S. Constitution ended up being addressed here but some of you surprise me. If we decided the Bible says one thing today and something else contradictory tomorrow, do we really have anything at all? Heaven forbid it.

Do you think the Constitution can mean one thing this year and be flopped over the next to say something it never did the next? Then, you don't have the Constitution, and you don't have the United States. For us to have judges who flop this way on the Constitution should raise red flags all around.

Being pro-choice on abortion means if murder is really convenient, and popular, then it's not really murder. That's how I felt about it when I was pro-choice, and how everyone felt who was there with me. However, it stands you in good stead with the MS-13 soldiers who are making life so wonderful along the Texas-Mexico border right now!

While I have got you, Russian President Medvedev is as bad a guy as Putin - he is KGB and the U.S. armed forces recognize what he really stands for, and it's not peace.

Anonymous said...

Only By His Grace:

I noted that you wanted a President who respects the Constitution as "a living and changing document."

I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on that. What do you mean by a document being "living and changing?"

Does that mean that new provisions can be added to the document, or that provisions can be struck without the Constitution being amended?

Would the concept of a living and changing document do away with the need for an amendment process in the Constitution which spells out how the document is to be changed?

For example, the some of the amendments include the right of blacks and women to vote. Under a living and changing document theory, would it have been necessary to amend the constitution to include blacks and women? Couldn't the court simply have declared "We the people" was living and changing to include blacks and women? Could the court decide that with respect to resident aliens who are not here legally?

In your view would all of the Constitution's articles being living and changing or only the amendments?

Would the living and changing document theory apply to the executive branch and legislative branches? In other words, when President Lincoln adopted some of his war powers without the approval of the congress or the courts, was he on firm ground on the basis of the Constitution as living and changing?

Would you describe any other laws as "living and changing?"

Would you apply that description ("living and changing") to other written works, say, the Declaration of Independence, the Bible, the Koran, the BFM?

Also, I would enjoy hearing about whether you have any concerns about declaring a document as "living and changing."

Interpretation is a difficult task alone. We can each read a sentence and see it differently. However, if we also agree that the sentence is living and changing, it sounds as if it had or now has no fixed meaning or intent? That sounds very post modern to me.

These are some questions that I have wondered about over the years. I would be really interested in your take, if you have the time or interest.

Thanks.

Louis

Anonymous said...

To Bob Cleveland,

Something is worrying me about your rationale. I saw the interview of Barack Obama and, yes, he did slip and say that, and was immediately corrected by the interviewer. Barack had no problem with the correction.

If we are to follow your thinking; must we then take literally all of John McCain's numerous slips and gaffes? I can't do that. Because I am not perfect in that regard, I must give John the benefit of the doubt and I do.

Why not choose a more appropriate criterion for judging Barack. Here's a good one: vision.

From Proverbs in the Holy Scriptures, we are given:

"Where there is no vision, the people perish."

Now THAT is a criterion for judging a candidate.

We need to put our stones down. The only One who never made a slip or gaffe was the Lord Jesus.

Only By His Grace said...

Bob Cleveland and Louis,

I would point out to the times I have heard Obama say, "When I accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior," and even "when I was saved," and "when I became a believer in Christ."

Louis,
I am not a lawyer; however,I did my Masters in History at NTSU in Denton where I was a pastor for nine years after I finished my M.Div at SWBTS. I know of no one who does not believe in a living and changing constitution. It was changed before it was adopted with the ten Bill of Rights.

I think it is a shame that we waited ninety years to pass the Fifteenth (15 Amendment), don't you? On the same token, I think the Eighteenth Amendment (18)(1919?) was a vulgar joke (I, also, wish that the Bible was as total anti-alcohol as I am, but, alas, it is not). As you well know, that Amendment was later changed with the crime wave of the Roaring Twenties and Thirties.

I pray tell why did it take one hundred and forty years (140) to pass the Nineteenth (19) Amendment making a woman a full citizen and still would be another forty-five years before Blacks were made full citizens ending the American Apartheid?

The Civil Rights Act of 1965, may have been 1964, signed by Lyndon B. Johnson changed the Constitution but was never an Amendment because it was declared in 1870 that those naturalized or born in the US were citizens.

When you consider you had to be wealthy to vote, be educated to vote (the poll tax), that a Black person was only one fourth to one eighth of a human being, must be a white man to be a citizen and to vote, if you were a woman you were just about half way between where Muslims are today and were a woman in the US is today.

Louis, I would say our Constitution has been changed many times in many ways and mostly for the better

Yours in Christ,
Phil in Norman.

Anonymous said...

To Mr. Riley,

Your comments to "saved" do not allow for him to be his honest self. I am one of those outsiders and, although I do not agree with many of "saved"s views, I can UNDERSTAND them. That's important.

Also, I can see through his rough rhetoric to the great strength of his faith. Any one of us can see that he has a good heart.

It is said that God looks at a man's heart before He looks at a man's brain.

Please don't worry about us outsiders. We are not going to have to look elsewhere to find good people who are unafraid to ask their questions and speak their thoughts. God uses us as we are.

Saved said...

Bryan,
Be that as it may, no one comes to Christ because they like the way Christians interact with each other over presidential issues. Yes, they will know us by our love for one another but disagreement and pointing out error does not mean that they do not love one another. Yeah, I get it, I come off sounding rough and uncaring when I answer Christians who say abortion is not that big a deal. Let me ask you something Bryan, can a man kill Jews and be a Christian? Can a man look the other way while a "brother" kills Jews? Would I be uncaring if told them that they were not in Christ? Let me tell you something brother that is the most loving thing that I can do. What kind of fiend would I be if know someone like a catholic or a Mormon or an abortion supporter, who thinks themselves to be right with God and is in reality going to hell? Do I not say anything to them so that I do not offend their feelings or because an on looker might preserve me to be uncaring and judgmental? Not one single solitary soul will go to hell because somebody did not convey the right image of love before their eyes. No my friend every man that ends up in hell will be their because he hates with a perfect hatred the one true God of this universe. Because, he is filled with utter contempt and disdain for Him. His heart is deceitfully wicked; he is a hater of God to the nth degree as his mind is at enmity against a thrice holy God. The fact remains that men do not come to Christ any other way than to hear the gospel and not whether or not they hear negative comments on a blog site between Christians/so called Christians. Jesus said that no one can come to the Father accept through the Son. He also said that no one can come to the Son unless the Father draws him. So you see men are saved as God wills it. We must make sure that men hear the gospel preached and not end up thinking that they will come into the fold any other way. That means it does not matter how great your choir is, how great your multimedia presentations are, or how culturally relevant your pastor and his sermons are and least of your silent wittiness. It is the gospel and only the gospel that brings men to Christ. Remember Jesus is not PC and by today's standard would be considered the narrowest minded man on the planet. Jesus and His holiness is that standard not the culture. There is nothing wrong with defending the God of scripture but there is something wrong with trying to hold out as the truth this effeminate god that winks at sin that so called Christians present today. I.e. Rob Bell, Brian McLaren and many other including those whom I was speaking with on this site yesterday.
Mike

Tom Parker said...

saved:
What a shame you come on a Christian blog and conduct yourself the way you have. You blow my mind the way you attack other christians. You think way to highly of yourself. You will not win people to Christ your way.

Steve said...

On a minor point:
I am glad to hear that we all agree on the U. S. Constitution. All over the Liberal world, people use the code words “living and breathing“ to mean that the Constitution can be interpreted in accordance with the laws of other nations (Justice Kennedy) or that it must be re-interpreted to match the changing attitudes of society, the most recent elections, or simply the skewed personal gripes of individual justices. I don’t believe anyone has a problem with public steps to alter the document by means of amendments. I actually like the fact that things like the Prohibition Amendment remain part of the document, to remind us that mistakes need to be remembered. The 16th, 17th, and 23rd Amendments may join the 18th in this regard.

Saved said...

Tom,
Who did I attack? And more to the point who did I attack to such a degree that you would declare public shame on me which is an act you clearly do not see as an attack on a Christian brother. You see Tom you chose to address me in a rough and uncaring tone merely because of my tone. Why? Because you see it as an important matter that should be addressed in the body of Christ. I happen to address the Laissez-faire attitudes of professing Christians towards something that should be so fundamental in the makeup of those that belong to Christ and that is to come to the defense of the least of these (unborn). So other than your disappointment can you be more specific as where am so wrong in my content.

Anonymous said...

Only By His Grace/Phil in Norman:

Thanks for the response.

I have not said anything negative about Obama's faith. You may have meant that for someone else.

On the Constitutional question, I think I see where you are coming from. You believe that because the Constitution has an amendment process and can be changed by amendment, that's what you mean by living and changing.

I agree with you. I do not know of any living person who would not agree that the constitution can and has been changed by amendment.

I agree that the Constitution has an amendment process outlined in it. And I agree with the amendments. Certainly the Civil War Amendments and the Women's Suffrage amendment were needed and excellent.

I personally do not believe that any of the amendments are absurd jokes. I think that our predecessors were trying to wrestle with issues in their day, and did the best they could.

The Civil Rights Act is a federal statute and does not act to amend the Constitution. It is an act of Congress, and that is one of the functions that Congress has in the Constitution.

You are plenty smart - way beyond me in fact, based on what I have read from you in the past. Law school only lowers one's I.Q., in my opinion.

What many legal scholars mean when they refer to a "living consitution" is not what you mean (that it can be amended).

What they mean is the document has no fixed meaning. This allows the U.S. Supreme Court to find new rights (e.g. a constitutional right to an abortion, a right to have homosexual relations etc.)

Other scholars do not believe that the constitutuion is "living" or so flexible that it can or should be read by later courts to cover things that the framers clearly never intended.

Of course the framers and ratifiers of the consitution had no intent of securing the rights of abortion or gay sex. Both were outlawed in every state in the union when the consitution was ratified.

But those who believe in a "living" constitution believe that the Supreme Court can come along 200 years later, and read the constitution with modern eyes, and that they can find new rights etc. Gay marriage is one of issues that is waiting to be heard.

Someone who believes in a "living constitution" typically believes that, for example, the U.S. Supreme Court could chose to declare that gay marriage is a fundamental right in the constitution.

That is typically what is meant when legal scholars say the consitution is "living."

I take it from your response that you were referring only to the fact that the people of the states have ratified certain amendments over time. That is spelled out clearly in the constitution. And as I said, no one I know of disagrees with that.

The reason I brought up the amendments to allow blacks and women to vote is that the legal scholars who do not believe in a living constitution (in the world of legal scholarship, not as you have stated) would agree that those amendments were an absolute requirement to secure the voting franchise for blacks and women (many of the states had prohibitions against blacks and women voting).

Those who believe in a "living constitution" would probably concede that the amendment process was one way to go, but not the only way. The Supreme Court could have expanded the franchise without the amendment process by judicial decree, by finding a new right based on the needs of society.

You probably know this, but the reason blacks were not counted as full persons was not at the request of the South and the slave holding states. The Southern states and slave holders wanted the slaves to be counted as full persons because it would have given them more representation in Congress due to a larger population in their states.

The non-slave holding states wanted to count slaves as less than full persons, so the Southern states would not have as much representation in Congress.

So, counting slaves as full persons was the Slave holders' position. What ended up in the constitution (counting slaves as less than a person) was the anti-slavery position.

What an irony. It doesn't read that way unless one knows the history. If the Slave holding southerners had won out, that language would not even be in the Constitution.

Take care.

Louis

Tom Parker said...

saved:
I'm not sure you understand that Republicans who are Pro-Life are not blameless like it seems you are making them out to be. They claim to be Pro-Life and people like yourself vote them in and then they do little to nothing about abortion.

Saved said...

First off, I am no Bush, McCain, Rice, Obama or any other kind of supporter. Abortion is not a question of political party it is a matter of the level sinfulness of this country and present age that we live in. Rep. and Dem. and every one in between are guity of the abortion pandemic. God is judging us and we are so blind we refuse to see it. We kill are babies by the truck load out pure self love, it was a sign of being under a curse in the word of God if woman held public office, when we address or sin question the abortion question will take care of its self.

Rex Ray said...

Wade,
I believe like you in saying the war in Iraq would look like war games compared to what could happen. You said in words to the effect that we should vote wisely.

This opened up a can of worms that one candidate would be a bad choice, but you do not say which one. When you introduce a problem, you usually give your solution. Why the silence?

The polls look like a close race, and may be decided by their choice of vice president.

www.bdrtax.com tells how Biden cheats and steals, but in a strategic move, (reported on the internet) he may be replaced by Hillary about October 5 on the grounds that Biden will withdraw because of aneurism health problems.

I believe our next president will have to ‘vote’ on some tough decisions, and there won’t be any button to punch that says, PRESENT.

John Fariss said...

I haven't read all the comments yet, but I just "have to" jump in. Would a Republican president--assuming he has to opportunity to do so--appoint a justice or justices who are more conservative than liberal? Conventional wisdom wants to say yes, although one never can tell. For one thing, sitting justices of a particular slant (liberal or conservative) have been known to hang on until there was an administration favorable to their views; consequently, the more liberal justices are more apt to retire if a Democrat is elected, and more apt to remain on the bench (as long as they can) if a Republican is elected, so it's not the clear-cut opportunity some seem to expect it will be. Same thing with conservative justices if a Republican is elected. Like it or not, that's just the way our system works. And IF Mr. McCain is elected, and IF he gets to appoint a justice or justices, and IF he decides to appoint a conservative judge (hmmm, he does like to be known as a maverick, out to shake Washington up), there are two further issues. First, remember that the Democrats control the Senate, and unless the Republicans not only win a majority sometime in the next two or three elections, but enough of a majority to cut off a fillibuster (which ain't gonna' happen, folks), no justice who admits he wants to overturn Roe v. Wade is going to be approved by the Senate--that's just the way our system works, like it or not. And if the nominee lied about his true intentions, and if the Senate bit such a lie, well, "conservative" or not, I wouldn't want OR trust a justice who lied during his confirmation hearings, and I would have no problem being skeptical of that person's professed Christianity, if he did so profess. You know: that pesky "by his fruits" business. And IF McCain is elected, and IF a liberal justice retires, and IF Mr. McCain appoints a conservative, and IF that conservative somehow gets approved while wanting (or at least being willing) to overturn Roe v. Wade, the second issue would be IF that justice remained conservative--because not all have, you know.

My point is that the Christian, evangelical imperative to vote Republican in order to eleminate legal abortions is a house of cards, and they are teetering mightily. And direct action against it? Well, the Republicans had control of the White House for almost the past eight years, and control of Congress for six of those years, and they did NOTHING about it. Why should we think they will do anything about it in the next four years, now that they have lost control of Congess, and if they retain the White House, it will be with a man who wants to be known, not as the evangelical's darling, but as a maverick who has little appeal to the far right, either socially or spiritually. And yes, I suppose this is a cynical perspective, but that is what the past eight years has done to me.

As opposed to abortion as retro-active birth control as I am, I think that is just a non-issue (or perhaps a red herring) in this Presidential election.

So we come back to the war issue as a deciding factor. For me at least, it's a tough call. John McCain understands war as no American President has understood it since at least Harry Truman and John Kennedy (both of whom were combat veterans AND Democrats, and pretty tough on Communists, as I understand it; and I leave out Dwight Eisenhower, because although he was Supreme Allied Commander during WWII, he was not a combat officer then or in WWI). On the other hand, it is well known that Mr. McCain has a short fuse, and I don't know but that I want someone as Commander-in-Chief who will look to diplomacy first. And folks: this pre-emptive strike stuff: is it really Christian? I just don't think so! Is Mr. Obama a bit light on experience? Yes, he is. If elected, he will arguably be the least experienced man to achieve that office since Abraham Lincolm. . . who, come to think of it, did a pretty decent job as a war-time President.

I have an idea: why don't we all commit to pray for the next President whoever his is, pray for the Spirit's leadership (for him and each of us in the voting booth), and in the meantime ratchet down the rhetoric about "you can't be a Christian if you vote for_______ (fill in your favote party to hate here)?

Anonymous said...

John Fariss:

You make some excellent points.

Depending on one's perspective, Bush almost nominated two justices that would have been much more moderate than the ones he ended up picking. Many think that Alberto Gonzales and Harriet Myers would have been his first choices. Both are Republican. Neither are believed to be committed to a jurisprudence that would be seen as conservative. Most think they would have fallen along the lines of O'Connor and Kennedy in voting.

McCain was part of the "Gang of 10" (or whatever the number was in that gang) who were not willing to change the Senate fillibuster rules to allow judicial nominees a vote unless 60 senators agreed. He has not been a leader in the Senate on confirming conservatives to the court. He has voted for them, but it has not been his signature issue. I note that he is saying that he would appoint people like Jusitices Scalia and Thomas.

But, as you have rightly noted, there is no guarantee that McCain would pick a solid conservative for the court. There are lots of Republican lawyers who are not conservative, and sometimes party ties and friendships play a big role in who gets picked.

However, I would not go so far as to say there is no difference. There clearly is a difference between the types that Obama will pick and McCain will pick.

Also, your other good point is that the Dems will control the Senate no matter who wins. They not only have more than 40 so that they can fillibuster. They have more than 50, so they could have votes and vote against nominees.

The Dems worked mightily to defeat Roberst and Alito behind the scenes, but those guys were so accomplished, the public pressure caused them to have a vote and they did not have the votes to defeat them.

The next time around might be different.

But having said that, even though a McCain Presidency would not necessarily guarantee an opportunity to appoint a justice, or to get his preferred justice approved, we KNOW what Obama will do with the judiciary. There is no guess work there.

Obama will certainly get 2 picks - Stevens is very old. Ginsburg has been ill. They have held on to keep Bush from getting another pick. If Obama is elected, they will most certainly retire before the mid-term elections.

Obama was Editor in Chief of the Harvard Law Review. He is not naive to these issues. He will have over 50 votes in his favor in the Senate. He has talked about the type of justices that he will pick. I believe they will be more "liberal" than Clinton's picks - Breyer and Ginsburg.

Many think that two who are on Obama's top list of picks are Hillary Clinton and Susan Estrich (Michael Dukakis' campaign chairman).

You also make a good point about abortion. Even if Roe v. Wade were overturned tomorrow, the Congress would probably have a legislative solution similar to Roe v. Wade. Of course, there would be some compromise to get through a Republican filibuster in the Senate (they will still have over 40 senators), but we will still have abortion in this country. I think Bush recognized that when he ran in 2000 and said that to end abortion would take the changing of a lot of hearts and minds.

Still, the issue of the federal judiciary (the Supreme Court, the federal Courts of Appeal and the U.S. District Courts) is a major consideration for many people.

Many people recognize that major governmental action in areas that relate to morals (which the church is involved with) over the last 50 years, have not come from Congress, but the Court. Some of the court's decisions have been met with joy. Others have been concerning to many.

There are many issues that the federal court will get to decide over the next few years. Just because the abortion issue will not be solved in accordance with the Christian perspective does not mean that there will not be many issues that will affect the Church and Christians.

The Court is not our salvation. And as you have rightly pointed out, electing John McCain is no guarantee. He, like all people, is flawed. And he will have to operate in a system larger than himself, which may require compromise.

But, for those who are concerned about the issue of judcial activism generally, not just on abortion, but all the other issues that will or have come up (e.g. homosexual sex, gay marriage, gun rights, federalism, public decency issues, media ownership, law and order issues, immigration, the use of foreign law as a standard for U.S. Constitutional interpretation, school choice or homeschool issues, church/state issues, public evangelism and other free speech issues, access to courts by enemy combatants, judicial action in military affairs etc.) the selection of the federal judiciary is one of the most important things a President does nowadays.

Those are things to give serious consideration during this and other elections.

Louis

B Nettles said...

Bob, you said the Senator didn't say anything ameliorating about the slip.

I have to disagree with you. This blog post by Lubos Motl has the video. At about 1:20 is when Obama makes the comment, then he does try to "ameliorate" by saying

"What I'm saying is that he [McCain] hasn't suggested that I'm ...that I'm, uh, a Muslim. "

And taken in context with the whole discussion, I can't fairly deconstruct that "my Muslim faith" phrase to mean anything other than what he explains. Obama doesn't seem to be a very good extemporaneous speaker and he does beat around the bush [oops, unintended pun] trying to figure out how he's going to slip around the question. He tends to get diarrhea of the mouth and turns a phrase that he really doesn't mean.

Anyone who speaks for a living (teachers and preachers, especially) can understand that while planning what you're going to say in the next sentence or two and exactly how to say it, your words can get jumbled. (Wade, can I get an amen on that?)

While I'm no fan of Obama, I certainly don't think it's reasonable to build a case that his statement is one of hidden truth, rather one of jumbled thought which he reasonably corrected ...McCain hasn't said Obama is Muslim.

On the other hand, I think the "lipstick on a pig" statement was intentional and he fully knew what he was implying.

Anonymous said...

China has not been mentioned in any of this talk of a coming war involving Iran, Russia, Israel, possibly the United States. Any thoughts on how China will weigh in? Remember, Bush has been borrowing our war money from China, so we need to think about this, too.

Anonymous said...

To B. Nettles,

I am SO sorry that you mentioned about Barack's intention when he used the term "lipstick on a pig".
You see, I never got the connection. I'm afraid that from, now on, that phrase and Sarah will be connected in my mind and I certainly don't want to think like that!

Only By His Grace said...

Louis,

As my response to your questions was much longer than I wished it to be, I am sorry I never answered two or three of your other questions.

I only hold the Bible to be sacred and the absolute Word of God noting that the Written Word reveals the Living Word and Living Word authenticates the Written Word. Scriptures almost deal with them as if they are one and the same for how can one separate thought from the thinker.

Again, I do not hold the Declaration of Independence, the Baptist Faith and Message, the Koran, the Constitution or any other document other than the Holy Scriptures to be divine documents, but human documents.

I do think President Lincoln overstepped his boundaries in suspending Habeas Corpus and other citizen's rights during the Civil War, just as I think President FDR overstepped his boundaries in threatening to pack SCOTUS, and just as I think President Bush has overstepped and is presently overstepping his boundaries in not living up to ratified treaties, torture of prisoners in our care and a dozen other things which may be impeachable.

When the Declaration of Independence says, "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." I note that this D. of I. does not say, "Just Americans."

When we can torture prisoners under our care with impunity and keep men never found guilty of anything incarcerated for five years as in Gitmo without recourse to a trial of any kind, I am ashamed that we have the gall to tell other folks how to treat their prisoners, and yes, that is overstepping his (President Bush) boundaries.

If another nation such as Japan and Germany did to our prisoners what we have been doing in this war to our prisoners, we would demand a world tribunal of those officials. It strikes me as very contradictory that this one who (President Bush) claims to be a follower of Him who said "to love your enemies and do good unto them that persecute you" should be so blood thirsty as a Governor and as a President.

I find it ironic in our evangelical family that the four presidents with the most unpopular ratings were two Southern Baptist and one so called fervent Christian who has a potty mouth which would make Richard Nixon blush (Presidents Truman and Carter were and are Southern Baptist; President Nixon was a Quaker, and President Bush is a Methodist with evangelical written all over him).

I will take Jefferson who never claimed to be much of a Christian and took all the miracles out of the Bible with his Jefferson's Bible including the resurrection, Lincoln who held to no faith until late in his first term, FDR who is my favorite of all favorites who was with someone other than Eleanor when he died in Hot Springs. It is why I and Baptist historically adhere to almost an absolute Separation of Church and State. I just do not depend on government officials for my Christianity. I am much closer to the Swiss Brethren, the Amish, the Hutterites and the Mennonites than I am to this "modern" or "contemporary" Southern Baptist position on Church and State.

Phil.

Anonymous said...

To Phil,
Thank God someone has spoken out against torture of our prisoners. I was beginning to feel that few people cared. There has been talk, not of impeachment, but of future war crimes trials. The trials would not be just for a few scape-goats, but for those really responsible.

If John McCain wins, I wonder if he will pursue this?

The world has already judged this country on the subject. I wonder if a war crimes trial can be conducted by an international body in accordance with the Geneva Convention? Oh, I know, the Bush administration does not respond to anyone's subpoenas, so the trial would, of course, be in absentia.

For us as a country to bury our heads in the sand on this issue is tantamount to giving our collective approval to the Bush administration's horrors. We were better than this. Our honor needs to be restored.

Steve said...

For Goodness' Sake! Only a doctrinaire Democrat would even dream of mentioning our mild-as-Ivory-Soap treatment of enemy combatants in the same conversation as the Japanese treatment of POWs in WWII.

I am embarrassed for your teachers. Anyone taken prisoner by the Empire of Japan in the Second World War had less than a 75% chance of getting home alive. I remember some accidental deaths of non-combatants during this decade as in all armed conflicts, but NO ONE we have taken prisoner has died as an outcome of torture or other planned actions. I think there was one G.I. that got mad and shot an unarmed combatant or two.

Anyone that even dreams of impeaching President Bush has spent far too long reading filth like Daily Kos and similar material.

Anonymous said...

To Steve,
I don't care what another nation has done as far as torture goes. My country, the United States of America, has in my life-time and the life-time of my parents, behaved with honor. There is no excuse for our great country to become like "them". If we do, then the enemy has indeed been victorious.

I have a son in uniform. I am very patriotic. My love for my country trancends any political party. If my son were to be captured in combat, I would want him to be humanely treated. No one's son deserves less than humane treatment at the hands of our great country. WE ARE BETTER THAN THAT. That's what makes us special.

If we descend into barbarianism, we will no longer be the United States of America. Do you think we will then become a "Christian" nation?

Anonymous said...

To Steve,

Oh, and one more thing. This May, I buried my father. He had a full military funeral: flag, honor guard, gun salutes, the works.
He was a World War II veteran. He was horrified by what the Bush admistration has done. Is he to be called unpatriotic? NO WAY. He was an honorable man who loved and served his country. He would have given his life for this country; but no one could have ever forced him to torture a prisoner. WE ARE AN HONORABLE COUNTRY; some of us need to be reminded of that.

Tom Parker said...

Steve:

President Bush will go down in history as one of the worst presidents ever. He and his inner circle have violated so many laws it is unbelievable.

Anonymous said...

Phil:

I understood from your first response that you do not see the Constitution as a living document in the sense that legal scholars do. I understand that you mean it is living only because it is amended from time to time by the vote of the people. Given that, I would be surprised if you would see any other document as "living." I did not ask if you thought the Constitution was divine. I think I knew your answer to that already.

I don't think that I had any other questions, but you were nice to write such a lengthy comment.

Lincoln very much set the historical standard for the President's war powers under the constitution. There are lots of conundrums one can get into when trying to figure out since the President has the power as Commander in Chief over the armed forces what is he actually prevented from doing, so long as he declares it is part of the exercise of his war powers? Lincoln did lots of other stuff and thought that he had a right to do it as commander in chief to save the union. Not a lot of people were happy, but he won the war.

I have to say that the impeachment talk that I have heard over the years related to Bush, in my opinion, is just talk at a high volume. Almost all of what I hear people mention (and I am not really talking about you) really boils down to disagreement over policy, which is not legally actionable. Even when the Dems took back Congress in 2006, they realized even though they have the votes any action against Bush would not be enforceable due to the nature of the issues.

I also don't agree with the way that torture has been discussed over the last few years. There are some fairly involved and sophisticated legal arguments involved in the difference between the enemy combatants at GITMO and POWs, and whether Geneva Convention provisions should be extended to the former. There had been attempts long before the Iraq war to extend the protections to non-POWs, but that failed. Again, people may disagree about that, but because they do, that does not make it an impeachable offense one way or the other.

I do disagree with your comparison of our treatment of the combatants at GITMO to the Japanese and German treatment of US prisoners during WWII (though in re-reading, your comment, it's hard to follow if you meant that or if some other commenter thought you did). I am not trained in that area, nor am I extensively well read. However, I am aware that some U.S. prisoners in Japan underwent vivisection (sp?) surgical dissection while living. Also, Bataan was extensively written about and vicious. I have not seen anything from GITMO that would approach that. From what I can gather, the issue there is water boarding.

I am not familiar with Germany's treatment of U.S. POWs, though I know that there were war crimes trials for some wholesale executions on the battlefield after capture.

I am not opposed to rendition - sending a prisoner to another country, even if that country tortures people. I think that the commanders on the field should make the decisions about whether to keep folks or not (as opposed to lawyers in D.C. or wherever). If we need to get rid of them, fine.

POWS do not get trials. They can be held for the duration. I am also unaware that any POWs historically got to bring lawsuits in court. So, I am not bothered by keeping the bad guys there. Military tribunals have historically been used for that, and I see no reason to change that.

Now, the Bush administration wanted to have it both ways on this, but that's not illegal. It had just never been done before. They wanted to classify the guys they are holding as "enemy combatants" so that they did not have to extend Geneva convention rules to them, which is legally o.k. (McCain opposed this). But they also wanted to keep them locked up for the duration of the war on terror as if they were POWS. So, I think they are going to have to chose - according to the US Supreme Court.

I would be in favor of what we were doing historically - keep the bad guys as long as we need to. No trials for the bad guys. That seemed to work for 200+ years.

In short, I would leave military matters to the military. That's the only way we will ever win armed conflicts.

Wasn't Warren Harding a Baptist, too?

By the way, let me recommend Richard Land's recent book on church state matters. Have you read it? It is excellent and provides what I believe is an accurate and balanced look at church/state issues.

Even if you are not a Richard Land fan, I would encourage you to read it. I think that you might be surprised to find the tack he takes and the good history he has about Jefferson.

Take care.

Louis

Tom Parker said...

Louis:

Any chance that one or more of the "bad guys" are not really "bad guys" that are being kept locked up indefinitely?

Anonymous said...

I'm trying to be non-partisan in my comments but here are a few very partisan ones (and off the subject besides, sorry, Wade):

Bumper sticker:
Nobody died when Clinton lied.

I think the main reason there has not been more effort to impeach Bush (who has done more impeachable acts than Bill Clinton probably thought of doing) can be said in two words: Dick Cheney. Cheney as president would be much worse than Bush.

And do not accuse me of condoning sex outside marriage. I think it is wrong. But starting an unjustifiable war is worse in human terms (though they are both sins).

It will probably take more than two terms of someone else to clean up the mess those two have made of our country and its reputation in the world.

Latest: $7 billion proposed giveaway to Wall Street. Think how many people in danger of foreclosure could be helped by that instead of giving it to those who made the mess in the first place.

Sorry to be partisan but I couldn't stand it any longer.

Susie

Anonymous said...

Hi Susie,

You aren't off topic. Wade does ask us to think before we choose a candidate.

Eight years ago, how many good Christian people supported George W. Bush and Dick Cheney? They TRUSTED that these men were honorable and that their decisions would be guided by their professed Christian faith. Many members of my own family believed this.

So what did we learn: torture is okay? (Yes, waterboarding IS torture). Wow. What really is disturbing is that some religious leaders actually support this.

Is it not reasonable that Christians can be judged on how they treat their enemies? Are there any instructions from Lord Jesus on this issue?

I do SO wish that John McCain had led a "crusade" against this torture thing. He certainly has the moral authority to do so, of all people in our government. He protested too quietly, I think. I was so disappointed.

For those Christians who see no problem with the torment and torture of our prisoners, what does the "Bible say"?

My scriptures tell me that it is an evil thing. Moral? Acceptable?
Christian? NOT EVEN CLOSE.

VIGILANT

Anonymous said...

This administration has given new meaning to the term:
'THE BULLY PULPIT'

Anonymous said...

I thank God for Blessing President Bush with the brains to keep all things secret due to the history of the liberals and the press to leak our secrets to our enemies. I pray to God to thank HIm for giving our president the knowledge to run this war and to keep our families safe.

I thank God for giving the president the strength to ignore of the lies and half truths of the left and to get it right dispite the lies.

I thank God for the president appointing judges to help save the babies from the murderers.

God Bless George Bush, who is a Christian, who is pro life and who had to overcome all the messes of the left and was still able to keep us safe and on track.

He is truly one of the best presidents in history.

OH, AND FOR ALL THOSE WHO MOUTH ABOUT THE ANON POST, YOU WILL UNDERSTAND IF THE LEFT COMES AFTER YOU LIKE THEY HAVE MRS PALIN AND OTHERS.

Tom Parker said...

any mouse:
I would respect you a whole lot more if you had signed your name, otherwise in my books your comment is from a chicken little.

Anonymous said...

Hi, Tom

As far as safety goes, what exactly did George W. Bush do for our country? My family is not safe. I have a son in uniform and another family member in Iraq. I could lose them both, God forbid. What kind of "safe" is the anonymous person referring to, I wonder? I pray to God for my family every night, but I can't thank God for George W. Bush.

Joel's Mom

Anonymous said...

If Bush were pro-life he wouldn't have started a war in Iraq that has killed so many people, our military and their civilians.

He may be against abortion but opposes health care for children after they are born. Some people who say they are pro-life seem to think life begins at conception and ends at birth.

Leaking secrets? What about outing an agent because her husband wrote opposing one of Bush's lies about Iraq's weapon capability. Secrets were leaked when they suited his purposes.

Are our families safe? Not from pollution (relaxed rules), bad food (less inspection, less regulation), lead, etc. in baby products, predatory lenders (being bailed out by his followers), job losses due to callousness of big business encouraged by his policies.

I will not say he isn't a Christian. If he says he is I will accept his statement. We may question how another lives it, but it is not our place to judge their faith.

But he certainly isn't pro-life in the fullest sense of the term.

Susie

Anonymous said...

Dear Susie,

I can see your point about not judging G.W.B's statement on his personal faith. You do have a good point.

What worries me is this:
Someday some of the victims of abuse and torture will be released and they will make their way to their home countries.

If THEY believe G.W.B. when he says he is a Christian, and they tell of their treatment at his command, then I think we really have a problem. This will not exactly increase our safety or moral standing in the world.

What do you think?

WORRIED

Anonymous said...

Adolf Hitler called himself a Christian, too. What HE did makes G.W.B look like a saint.

Christian Thinker said...


The Bush administration did not lie. Saddam's Iraq was a threat to the US that demanded the use of military force. That was not just Bush's "cowboy" opinion; that was the written law, passed by huge and bipartisan margins in both houses of Congress. That opinion was supported by both pre-war intelligence and post-war intelligence.

Moreover, the "legal case" was solid and Iraq was given chance after chance after chance.

* The authorization noted at least 10 UN resolutions, spread out over a decade, to justify the use of US military force.

* The Authorization noted that "the President has authority under the Constitution to take action in order to
deter and prevent acts of international terrorism against the United States, as Congress recognized in ... Public Law 107-40." [Emphasis added.]

* The Authorization noted Public Law 105-235 (passed under President Clinton) that urged the President "to take appropriate action, in accordance with the Constitution and relevant laws of the United States, to bring Iraq into compliance with its international obligations."

The invasion of Iraq was arguably the most justified case of military action the US has ever taken in its history, based on national defense, validated intelligence and legal authority, not to mention morality. Articles of impeachment would have made more sense if Bush had not invaded.

That the exact opposite story is what a majority of Americans appear to believe, and a super-majority of non-Americans, is a scary thought. The truth has been sabotaged, and not by President Bush or his allies.



From Who Lied About Iraq?
By Randall Hoven
americanthinker.com

Anonymous said...

If you Google in "Randall Hoven", you can get a REALLY good look at his idea of the truth.

No wonder he feels that most Americans and almost all of the world "don't get it".

You know, you can fool some of the people all of the time; and all of the people some of the time; but you can't fool all of the people all of the time.

While we are still a free country, I think I'll do my own research and thinking, thank you very much.

Michael said...

Before you read any post, take a deep breath and try not to have ANY assumptions about what the poster means

and if it helps smile as you read the post.








Joels Mom,
that unfortunately is the story when you sign up for the military. Your children did not sign up to stay safe when they joined the military.
I don't know what their motives were but in a way they're keeping you safe from something that is preventable.

Susie,
no one died directly from the leader of the people lying under oath. I know you love the precedent though.
the 9/11 terrorist were planning that attack for how many years? What set them off to it? MTV?

think about it and use that thing in your head rather than just that thing in your chest.

the world is a very complicated place. to that end I suggest you read "the black swan: The impact of the Highly Improbable"
it will "clear" a number of common assumptions up.
The beat of a butterflys wings can cause a hurricane on the other side of the globe especially in todays world.

if we're going to blame administrations for all bad that goes on in the world I'd say that 9/11 was clinton's fault and the economy meltdown of this last year is Bush's fault.
but I won't blame all bad stuff on the president because he can't do everything.
He is after all, just a man.

Christian Thinker said...

anonymous whose post follows my previous one,
Indeed, think! I encourage all to Google "Randall Hoven" and read much more of his writings. Think, indeed!

Anonymous said...

Hi Michael,

I'm Joel's Mom and I could not be more proud of him. He signed up after 9/11 to SERVE HIS COUNTRY. Yes, he would give his life for his country. I know this and it is part of my pride in him.

So when someone writes that G.W.B. is keeping our families safe, I disagree. My son showed up for duty. My son is one of the guardians of our freedom. My son and many like him are "keeping us safe", not G.W.B.

Some of our guardians will make it back home and some will not. But yes, THEY are keeping us safe. In a way, I feel like they are all my sons; and it breaks my heart to see the pictures of our dead soldiers. So many of them remind me of Joel.

Once, again, please understand, I believe it's not about safety, it's about freedom. This country IS worth fighting and dying for, because, at least for now, we still have our freedom.

MY SON SHOWED UP FOR DUTY.

JOEL' VERY PROUD MOM

Anonymous said...

"No one died when Clinton lied."

Are you kidding me?!!!

The "Office" died when Clinton lied.

That should be so much more important than any of us or even our children if you ask me.

Or are you one of those that only cares about your "own" children and your "own" baby-killing choice and your "own" pocket book?

Were you forced to explain ejaculation, sperm, what a cigar had to do with sexual intercourse, or why the President of the USA couldn't even say what "is" is to your children like a lot of us did?

GWB may be a lot of things to the left leaning haters, but a sexual predator is not one of them.

God bless him!

Watch the newscast from 9-11 again. It will rip your heart out and remind you of what this about.

Then go and vote for...NOT Barack Hussein Obama...but for John Sidney McCain!!!

Anonymous said...

Susie:

I have heard some people make the argument that if one is against abortion then one must also be for government funding of food, housing, education, transportation etc. for children.

Isn't it possible to hold a position that seeks to protect the killing of innocent life, but also to hold the position that many publicly funded programs designed to help children are not the wisest for society?

I am not saying that I don't support many programs that are designed to support children.

I just believe that there are many people of good will who do not want to see innocent lives ended, but who also question the wisdom of some economic policies.

The best thing that we can do to advance discussion in my opinion is talk about the merits of various programs and whether they work or not, or whether they are the best direction for the country.

Louis

Anonymous said...

Guys:

The doors have come off of this discussion.

The one saying Bush is worse than Hitler is the ultimate.

Louis

Chris said...

Joe:

Sorry for not having replied myself, but I have been out of town this weekend.

Two things I would say in response: what is it about that word that specifically eliminates the acts of killing in war, self-defense, or capital punishment? If I am misunderstanding the word I would appreciate a little more context to understand it correctly and not just it doesn't mean these things.

I'm not just trying to be stubborn, I really do wonder why we make these kinds of distinctions. My fear is that we have let America's cry of "Peace and Safety" pervert our understanding of the radical nature of God's ethics. I'm afraid that because war and capital punishment insulate us from harm we just excuse their presence by saying "the Bible doesn't really mean that."

I read the New Testament and I can't help but wonder at how Christians condone any of those things. If I am to immitate Christ, war, capital punishment, and even self-defense seem to be things which I should detest, not embrace.

It was capital punishment that killed Christ. It may have turned out for good, but that was certainly not its intention. Nor would I be so quick to dispatch those who may not be ready for what comes after.

Self-defense was the option Christ turned down in Gethsemane when He told Peter to sheath his sword (a sword Jesus had previously indicated it might be good to have around). In His trials, Jesus didn't defend Himself. He simply let the powers do with Him what the powers always do to Godly men and women.

War is the trickiest because we have seen how war can accomplish some very good things. But if Christian ethics teach us nothing, they teach that ends do not always justify means. And again, I worry that we as Christians are too quick to send our enemies into the afterlife to avoid our arrival there. When Jesus died, He rebuked His friends and died for His enemies. War seems the exact opposite of that model. Nation states will have their wars. I don't doubt that. But I cannot condone a Christians participation in that war because I do not believe that the NT leaves such a route open. Nor do I believe I can promote a Christian candidate who says that as a Christian he can justify the war. If he can justify it as a politician, that is one thing. But to twist the Bible to justify this seems almost heretical to me.

One final thing: you say that an ethic like this claiming Biblical justification serves the purpose of making God break His own law. I'm not going to try and theologize a way around that right now. I have a question instead. Is that not the same liberty we give God every day we praise as Job did, "the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. Blessed be the name of the Lord."?

These are the mere musings of a Missouri undergraduate student and do not claim them to be infallible. But I do not think myself unbiblical, either.

Anonymous said...

Louis,
No one said (or implied) that Bush is worse than Hitler. But this discussion does seem to be generating more heat than light.

Anonymous said...

Louis,
Can you quote this "Hiter" thing. I can't find it.

CONFUSED

Anonymous said...

Tom Parker:

Sure it's possible that the U.S. forces just picked up some innocent guy on the battlefield. Happens in every war. I suspect it doesn't happen that often, but we'd be silly to say it never happens.

Historically, the military sorts these things out. It takes time, especially when a conflict is ongoing. I believe that the military has released some prisoners from GITMO after they are confident of their decision.

And it is tougher here because the combatants are not the army of a state, and do not wear a uniform.

I have more confidence in our soldiers serving on the ground to figure this out than I do any other group of people. Plus, this being war, this is something I want the U.S. military to do.

Also, I would use a reverse standard of proof in a military situation. Let them out only if there is no reasonable doubt they were not combatants or aiding combatants.

I think that is what Pershing, Eisenhower, Nimitz, Westmoreland, have done historically. I see no reason to do anything differently here.

Again, what caused the problem for the administration here, I think, was their classification of these guys. That created some interesting legal issues.

Louis

Saved said...

Hitler claimed to be a catholic not a Christian. Thers a difference.

Anonymous said...

Louis,
Does it matter what category a prisoner falls into if the majority of Americans and most of the civilized world feel that torture is a MORAL EVIL ?

Anonymous said...

Seems like the Bush Administration has played with definitions a lot. Now, McCain is doing this. After repeatedly saying that the "fundamentals of our economy are strong"; until people began to question his grip on reality, McCain then 'clarifies' what he means by 'fundamentals' as being the equivalent of our American working force. Now this also, has people wondering who is advising him.

REALISTIC

Anonymous said...

Anon:

My bad. The reference is that what Hitler did makes Bush look like a Saint. Got it backwards. Read too quickly. Thanks for calling me out!

Was just so surprised to see Hitler end up in this discussion.

Hitler was a nominal Catholic in his upbringing. He later said the Christianity was the product of sick minds. He acknowledged the Vatican and the Pope, but as a political move and as part of his alliance with Musolini (sp?). He also played on the antisemitism that Luther expressed. Lutheranism was the dominant religious expression in Germany in the 1930s. There is no evidence in any of his leadership that he publicly advocated Christian teaching in any way. He believed in the state as the supreme thing. None of the Nazi rallies used religion as a prop. The SS actually had an occult type belief system from the pagan gods of Germany that preceded Christianity. Valhalla and all that.

Think of Hitler as really a socialist/communist - but with German culture (as opposed to all cultures) being the only legitimate expression.

Here's an obscure reference - the interrogation of Adolf Eichmann (I think I have this right) after his capture in South America. There is a book containing word for word one of the interrogations. In it Eichmann talks about being raised in an Evangelical family in Germany. But that as Naziism became the predominant political expression in Germany, he had to chose between being a good Nazi and being a believer in the Bible etc.

It's an interesting read if you ever can find it.

I think every believer who has any political interest is at times tempted to subordinate the faith (the City of God) for political doctrines and goals (the City of Man). We know what Eichmann chose.

Louis

Anonymous said...

Anon:

What torture are you talking about? Where, by whom, and what?

The army field manual and other docs relate to POWS. The administration did not call the bad guys POWS because they faught for no state. They called the enemy combatants. So, there was an issue about Geneva Convention protections. But there is a lot of activity that goes beyond what the Geneva Convention allows and torture.

That is what I am referring to.

I do not know what you are referring to when you mention torture. If you could tell me the details that would be helpful.

Thanks.

Louis

Anonymous said...

REALISTIC (LIKE THE ALL CAPS THING!):

I have not followed the economic plans of the candidates closely.

What specifically does Obama want to do, and how does that compare to what McCain wants to do?

Louis

Anonymous said...

Susie:

Frankly, you have not presented a good reason to explain why Bush hasn't been impeached. If the Dems have the goods and they have the votes, and they have good cause, impeach the guy.

The Dems' staffs have a lot of smart lawyers advising them. They just don't have the goods, as much as you apparently believe they do.

As for the reason you suggested - the Cheney would become President, that doesn't wash. Cheney can be impeached. I have read a bunch about impeaching him, too.

But it never happens because they cannot impeach people for policy choices.

Oh, and if you think about it, they could impeach Bush and Cheney. Wouldn't Nancy Pelosi then become President? Isn't she in the line of succession after the Pres and VP? If the Dems really had a case, they would go after it hard.

I think we all have to realize that politicians say a lot of things to get the base charged up that they can never really put into practice.

Here's a quick list from the run up to the 2006 mid terms. The Dems, or various ones of them, promised to do the following if elected:

1. End funding for the war in Iraq. (We are still there, and winning the occupation (we already won the battle to take control) thanks to persistence and a change in strategy. Obama will still be there probably through his entire first term, if elected).

2. Impeach Bush. (Has not, and Will never happen).

3. Lower gas prices. (Hasn't happened. First energy bill was is just now coming up for a vote, and it was brought up as a result of the "Drill, drill, drill" discussion).

People of any stripe, Republicans and Dems need to realize what is rhetoric and what can truly be accomplished by the parties they may chose to follow.

Christians, especially in a democracy where we have a say so, should develop some sophisticaton about politics. Me included!

Louis

Anonymous said...

Louis,

Does it matter what label you pin on another human being before you torture him? Does saying it's legal make it right? The prisoner is a person. He is one of us: the human race.

I kind of wonder: if these prisoners had been from a Christian country, would they have been tortured; or would there have been a national out-cry against it?

How quickly we dehumanize others before we abuse them.

It's the dehumanization that makes us think it's okay to abuse them. You can call them anything you want. They are still human beings. That criterion is all that matters.

Very sad, this. Choose a label. Slap it onto the prisoner. Now he is not longer worthy of humane treatment?

We are no better than the way we treat the most vulnerable among us.

Saved or not, the torturers will stand someday before God's throne.
What excuse then?

Very sad.

Anonymous said...

Hi Louis,

I was reading your comment about not being able to impeach Bush. Louis, he's already been informally impeached: look at his poll numbers. Not all of those people who don't approve of him are "Dems".

I don't know too many Americans who didn't feel like vomiting when they witnessed his "leadership" during and after Katrina.

Impeachment or not, among Americans, his credibility was seriously damaged. Who on earth has been advising this man?

Bill said...

Interesting, the use of John McCain's middle name so using Barack Obama's somewhat infamous middle name doesn't seem so obviously anti-muslim.

Anonymous said...

Anon:

I did not agree with the Administration's handling of Katrina either, though I think that the State and local governments there were equally to blame for not evacuating and calling out the national guard immediately.

I get the sense that you may not have voted for Bush. That's o.k. You are right that not just Dems are disappointed with him. Lots of conservatives think that he has just signed any spending bill that came his way, which is true.

But many Americans are pleased with what he has done. I have appreciated the aggressive military approach to the war on terror. I noted today that the terrorist blew up a builing in Pakistan. Terrible.

That's about the last place they have reach. I hope that McCain or Obama, whoever, will keep those guys on the run and stay after them militarily.

My own take on the Bush Presidency is that after 9/11, he decided that there was one most important thing to him - prosecuting the war on terror. That has been his singular focus. I think he has done a great job. He has won two conflicts in two countries. The military has performed well. I think that the occupation strategy was wrong, but it's easy to arm chair quarterback. The surge has been a success (Obama finally admitted that in an interview last week).

He has been cautious in other places militarily when needed.

The Katrina response was a disaster - agreed.

The tax cuts were great, in my opinion. I think Obama has backed off on promising to repeal those over the last few days.

Impeachment has a specific legal meaning. Let's not try to say he has been impeached. He has not.

His approval ratings are low. True. So were his father's around election time. His father's are fairly high.

Clinton's ratings are fairly high even though he was impeached for trying to fix a court case. I am not a Clinton hater. But I do think in retrospect that he was very passive on the international front (not in the Balkans, however), and that was a bad mistake. North Korea got all their nukes with his approval (for energy). China got a lot of tech transfer that has turned out to be dangerous. Al Qaeda was not really pursued aggressively. He took a "legal" approach to terrorism as opposed to a military one. But in fairness to Clinton and/Gore, if 9/11 had happened on their watch, they probably would have responded as Bush did.

I am 48. I have been voting in the Pres election for 30 years. I have seen several administrations come and go. The partisans will howl about this one and that one. It usually takes a few years to get a true perspective. None are perfect. All have flaws. Bush's flaws are no worse than the others.

Would take too much time to go through them all.

I really hope that whomever is elected that we can all agree, as citizens and Christians, that we can treat the Pres with respect. I think that we have lost a lot in the political discourse over the years. There is plenty of blame to go around on all sides.

I hope our disagreements can be based on rational, civil, even passionate argument, and not invective and epithets.

Thanks for your good thoughts.

Louis

stan said...

Chris,

Before you start thinking that Jesus is all peace and love, you might want to read the OT and Rev.

God hasn't changed. Mal 3:6 and Heb 13:8

Anonymous said...

To Louis,

Thanks for the response. Healthy debate is an American tradition. I can not agree with many of your points; but I have been able, at least, to understand you because of the clarity of your argument.

I'm afraid my logic is often overcome by my love of ethics. I just cannot rationalize about something that seems to me to be so clear-cut in its 'rightness'. I'm very old-fashioned in my concept of what takes pre-eminance in an ethical hierarchy.

I think that you may have an academic or legal background. I'm sure you are extremely well-read. Thank you for sharing your point of view. This helps me to understand another way of thinking. I'm glad I tried to understand. And I very much thank Wade for allowing us to have this opportunity to communicate.

By the way, I do have ever so many Republicans in my own family. You should hear us when we get going about the issues. Very entertaining. :)

Anonymous said...

Dear Stan,
Start reading the Psalms: one per night. Read them all the way from the first one until you read the last; then begin again.

This is an EXCELLENT anti-dote for an overdose of Revelations.

Give a try for at least one month and watch your whole change.

Saved said...

Does God hate anyone?

Does God hate anyone? The answer is yes.

Psalm 5:5, "The boastful shall not stand before Thine eyes; Thou dost hate all who do iniquity,"

Psalm 11:5, "The Lord tests the righteous and the wicked, and the one who loves violence His soul hates."

Lev. 20:23, "Moreover, you shall not follow the customs of the nation which I shall drive out before you, for they did all these things, and therefore I have abhorred them."

Prov. 6:16-19, "There are six things which the Lord hates, yes, seven which are an abomination to Him: 17 Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, 18 A heart that devises wicked plans, feet that run rapidly to evil,
19 A false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers."

Hosea 9:15, "All their evil is at Gilgal; indeed, I came to hate them there! Because of the wickedness of their deeds I will drive them out of My house! I will love them no more; All their princes are rebels."

Are these verses hard to read? Do they make you feel uncomfortable? They should. God hates sin. But, He does not punish sin. He punishes the sinner. Sin cannot be tied up and thrown into a fire. It cannot be put in a box or glued to a stick. It is rebellion. It is rebellion in the heart. It is breaking God's Law. Sin occurs inside the heart and mind of people. Therefore, God must punish the sinner. Why? Because He is both Holy and Just and the person who sins offends God. God's Holy and Just character will not allow Him to ignore this offense. Why?....

God's Law is Perfect

When God said, "Let there be light," it happened. When He commanded that the oceans be, they came into existence. God's word is powerful. What He says is never futile, empty, or without power.
The Law is a reflection of God's character. It is pure and perfect. It is powerful. The Ten Commandments reflect God's holiness and justice. These commandments are not without punishments. A law without consequences is only an empty slogan.
To sin is to break God's Law and offend His character. To sin means to challenge His character and authority. It means you go against His word. But God is not a liar. His word is true. He has said He will punish the lawbreaker.
But, praise be to God, that while we were yet sinners, Jesus died for us (Rom. 5:6). There is no way we can appease God. That is why God became one of us (John 1:1,14; Heb. 2:17), to take our place and become sin on our behalf (2 Cor. 5:21). Therefore, people have two options:

Trust Jesus, God in flesh, as your savior and put your faith in the sacrifice that He made on the cross and in nothing you do.

Reject the cross and let the penalty of the Law fall upon you.

Either God pays, or you do -- forever. Which will it be?

"For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins," (Heb. 10:26). If there is no sacrifice available for you, then God's wrath abides upon you because He hates sin and your sin is not removed (John 3:36). Trust Jesus alone or the wrath of God will abide upon you forever.

Conclusion

The sobering fact is that God is so holy and righteous that He hates the sinner (Psalm 5:5; Lev. 20:23; Prov. 6:16-19; Hos. 9:15). Some say that we should say that God only hates the sin but loves the sinner. But, the above scriptures speak contrary to that. But it is also true that He is love (1 John 4:8). It is better to accept the love of God found in Jesus than to reject it and suffer His wrath.

Lee said...

For what it is worth, after all of the comments here, the seriousness of a situation that could launch a war, especially one such as this, goes well beyond the politics of the day. This is the kind of situation that requires the US to draw together beyond the pettiness and silliness of partisan politics, and realize that it will take more than lip service to deal with this kind of situation. The polarization that is represented in many of these 161 comments is evidence that we have deep seated problems, and obviously neither candidate seems committed, or willing, to look at real solutions that will resolve some of these problems. A conflict between Israel and Iran is much more serious, regarding our own national security, than the fruitless arguments over abortion and gay marriage. The resolution of this situation does not lie in a partisan political position. This is a major foreign policy decision, and all the little petty political garbage flying around, like people continuing to insist that Obama is a muslim (he is not) or that McCain's age renders him incompetent will do nothing but weaken our ability to deal with the situation if it happens to kick off.

Anonymous said...

Dear "Saved",

I believe God has shown us His love for all of mankind: the gift of His Only Son.

If God could do this for us; I just don't "get it" that He hates any people. We weren't created to be hated; we were created to be redeemed.

Our Father wants all of us to come Home, if we can get across that wide gulf that Jesus has bridged for us.

Have you been reading "Sinners In the Hands of An Angry God"? I hope not.

Let me see if I can find some things to help you see the Father in a different way. In the meantime, pray the Psalms and read the Gospel of St. John. These are two very powerful testaments to the love of God. My goodness, I worry about you! Be peaceful, my friend, you are His child.

Prayers,
L's Gran

stan said...

Anon,

Read the whole bible 3-4 times cover to cover and see if you can't see the church in Exodus, Joshua, the prophets (especially Jeremiah), Lamentations and almost everywhere you read.

1Co 10:1 For I want you to know, brothers, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea,
1Co 10:2 and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea,
1Co 10:3 and all ate the same spiritual food,
1Co 10:4 and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ.
1Co 10:5 Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for they were overthrown in the wilderness.
1Co 10:6 Now these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did.
1Co 10:7 Do not be idolaters as some of them were; as it is written, "The people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play."
1Co 10:8 We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day.
1Co 10:9 We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents,
1Co 10:10 nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer.
1Co 10:11 Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come.

Christ has not changed. God's people have not either. We are still a stiff necked, hard hearted rebellious people.

Anonymous said...

To Stan,

But isn't it interesting how God arranges interventions in our lives designed to crack open our hardened hearts? What a wonderful mystery. Even in the midst of our troubles, God is merciful.

stan said...

Anon,

Amen to that!

Anonymous said...

Louis,

You asked about POW's kept by Germans. I saw on a documentary recently that a large portion of the Polish soldiers that were held by the Nazis during the war returned home after the war. However, the ones held by Stalin over 250,000 only a few returned home.
If you are not familiar with Katyn then you should check it out. Stalin actually killed as many or more people than the Nazis during WWII.

It makes sense why the Polish gov't after over a year of stalling, signed the missle defense treaty with the US during the first week following the invasion of Georgia by Russia.

If Russia is siding with Iran, then we have bigger problems than Sen. Obama may have the experience to handle. Putin is former KGB and not a man to be trusted.

Just a mom,

Anonymous said...

To Just A Mom,

You do know about G.W.Bush's opinion of his friend Putin's character. I wonder if John McCain shared George Bush's opinion of Putin. There is evidence in the voting record of John McCain, that he values George Bush's political opinions and choices. Wonder if it carries over to personal evaluations of others.

WORRIED MOM

Chris said...

Stan:

Don't get me wrong. I don't think that God isn't wrathful or jealous or even vengeful. But I think there is a qualitative difference between God being those things and allowing ourselves to be those things because God is. For one, God is the only one with all the facts, so He alone is in a position to judge whether wrath is appropriate. And only God is just, therefore He will met out the appropriate judgement and nothing more or less. Both of those qualities make it unwise for us to put ourselves in the position of God and to act in a war-like manner on His behalf. I still believe in a God who will rain down fire from Heaven if he thinks it appropriate. I don't need to make that fire-rain for Him.

Secondly, please note that I have read the OT. And Jesus said that the OT was summed up in this: love God and love your neighbor. Love is patient, not vengeful. Love is kind, not wrathful. Love does not envy, it is not jealous. Therefore, if we are to say that God is those things, it must be that He is those things in a very different way from the way we would normally use them.

I have also read Revelation. I find it incredibly significant that the sword that the white rider has in Rev 19 is coming from His mouth (sword of truth, anyone?). I find it incredibly significant that though an army is behind Him, this army never has to do anything (and nor do they bear weapons). It is the rider alone who defends and avenges and judges the world. Throughout Revelation, those who the world has opposed look to God to vindicate them. They did not try to defend themselves nor did they try fight off the world. They saw a Holy God who would fight for them, they did not need the sword themselves.

The verses in Malachi and Hebrews you provided make a very important point for me. Thanks. God, Himself, does not change. But in the context of both of those verses are people who are vascilating in their faiths. God will honor the covenant with His people, but His people must take responsibility for their part of the covenant. That means responsiblity for keeping the law. And that means we must be ready to be the living sacrifice which is called for in the NT, not to make others that sacrifice for us.

Mike In Enid said...

Okay Wade, I am jumping in as you encouraged me to do.

I have read your thoughts over and over again and I can't agree more with what you have shared. Whoever is elected in November "will need to be a person of resolve and strenth." I really thought the responses to your thoughts would be more on point, guess I was wrong.

I offer these thoughts...

Back when abortion was legalized I knew it was wrong. My wife was on the debate team in high school in 1973 and the national debate topic was "abortion". As two young teenagers in love we talked a lot about the issue. Even as teenagers we knew that abortion was not good for our country. Even back then I knew that this would eventually open the door and possibly the floodgates for more than we bargained for as a nation and I am not talking just about abortion.

I thought of what it would mean down the road for older folks or people, who because of their disabilities would be judged useless by a functioning society. Then along came the movie,
"Soilent Green". Kinda creeped me out.

As the years have flown by and I have lived this life and debated and listened to people debate this one issue I am at this point in my understanding... If you do not respect life, how can you say you respect the giver of life?

The door was opened for us as a country to begin to factor God out of the equation. With one vote we began a trip down a slippery slope as a nation.

The door was opened for us as a country to determine that life does not begin at conception. I have seen both my grandchildren via ultrasounds, prior to their births, and I know that my precious girls were definitely little people just waiting to meet us. Even my first little granddaughter gets it, she talks to her little sister all the time and she isn't scheduled to join us until January 09.

The door was opened for us as a country to decide that partial birth abortion is okay. What the heck? I was visiting with someone at work last week about this "procedure" and they had no idea what the "doctor" does. They were sickened when I explained the procedure and all I could think was, "how could you not know?"

The foundation laid by our founding fathers has been cracking for years and when the foundation of a house cracks the house eventually collapses.

Signs of a deteriorating foudation:
-Abortion legalized and eventually accepted as a form of birth control.
-Violent crimes of every kind for us to hear about every night on the news... because people no longer respect the lives of others.
-Schools and colleges kicking God out and letting the world in.
-Senior citizens, those who have the greatest wisdom to share, are cast aside and forsaken, not only by society but by their own children...aborted from their hearts.
-Politicians ranting and raving about one another, stirring up the people to vote and then, when elected, do nothing for those who were stirred up to vote for them.
-Oil company execs and those who head up agencies like Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac lining their pockets at the people's expense.
-Young and old, men and women strung out on the latest street drug, at the expense of their families.
-Talk show hosts leading people further down the slippery slope with their form of worldly wisdom.

I could go on and on but will leave you with some parting thoughts.

As we abort God out of our hearts we no longer understand that we are to value others as image bearers of the God who made us.

In regards to your thoughts Wade...

As we as a nation factor God out of the equation of our lives, then we factor out the fact that we will have a clue as to how to act on the situations in Israel, Russia, Georgia, Iran...etc.

An example of how off track we are is how off topic and angry the conversation has gotten here.

I would challenge your readers to go online and take a listen to your latest sermon series; "The Long Reach of Your Speech". Right now I see a whole lot of piercing going on.

rmkton said...

Mike in enid,

Thanks for the comment I appreciate your insight and perspective.

One thing that I think I would challenge is the notion that our foundation is cracking. I don't think we are any more or less godly now as opposed to when our country was founded...it may appear that way...but every generation feels that way (i.e. read what Jonathan Edwards had to say about his time) so I think it becomes a bit of a straw man to take this approach as a basis to say our foundation is crumbling.

I don't not believe our society is served well by abortion, however what are we trying to accomplish here? Are we trying to criminalize it or end it? If we are trying to end it then outlawing it is not going to stop it. Abortion has been happening ever since man (or woman) realized that a pregnancy could be terminated (with the death of the fetus as pro-lifers like to put it).

If this was such a crime against God and humanity why didn't Jesus or Paul deal with it directly? It was certainly going on then and was no secret.

Anonymous said...

Just a Mom:

You are more than just a Mom, based on your excellent last post.

Louis

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