Tag Archives: LDS

Priorities Of Preservation

There is a push today to limit human suffering, to prevent any pain from occurring at all. This cringing drive is so rabid that a father sues his daughters’ school when she is stung by a bee on the school yard. There are schools refusing to allow recess, there are schools sanitizing their play equipment, removing anything which may remotely cause any risk. The schools don’t have a choice, the parents will sue them out of existence if their children encounter the slightest discomfort.

This issue here is contained in the fundamental difference in perspective cause by a proper understanding of mans inherent value before a creator God. A humanist will not

Compare this to the lifestyle lived by many Christians seeking to save the soul and the mind. In God’s design the body is temporary, it dies, but the soul is immortal, it is freed from the body by death and lives forever. To a Christian, more important than the body is the soul. A Christian may be called to give up their life, literally or figuratively, to save peoples’ souls. A Christian does not discount the value of a body. You find Christians at the forefront of most of the humanitarian efforts around the world, seeking to protect the bodies of millions of human lives, regardless of whether or not those being protected are Christian or not. The Christian seeks to preserve the body because under God we are all equally valuable, and because the body is the corporeal home of a soul which either needs saving or has a life to live and purposes yet to accomplish.

The world seeks to preserve the body, while summarily dismissing the mind, allowing anything whatsoever to creep its way into the receptive, untrained recesses. And even then they desire to allow anything we want to be used on our body, so long as we do the choosing. We can choose abortion, we can choose drugs, we can choose tattoos, just so long as we do the choosing. It is a matter of control. God is God, He holds choice in His hands. He allows us to choose all the time, but there are many times He chooses for us,for His glory, for our good. Mankind does not want God to choose for us. All of nature are God’s tools, and He wields Nature for the furthering of His plans. As we seek to limit the influence of God over our lives we will find Nature rising up and thwarting our plans, exerting His control over us.

I love butterflies. I have lots of experience with butterflies. I worked over the course of 2 or 3 consecutive summers for a local butterfly farm in my home town. We bred and raised monarch butterflies and sold them for weddings funerals, graduations, research, etc… There is a crucial stage of every butterflies development when the caterpillar has grown to the right maturity level it crawls to the underside of the leaf in the wild or our special rearing containers in the lab and in a weird jerking dance encloses itself in a chrysalis. The caterpillar goes through a metamorphosis, a fundamental change in it’s very nature and emerges and beautiful and brilliant butterfly. The escape from the chrysalis is one of the most important passages in its brief life. Without this struggle the butterfly will die. With the metamorphosis complete the chrysalis turns transparent and the orange and black wings are scrunched against the body in the little space left by the bulging abdomen of the butterfly. The butterfly braces itself against the chrysalis wall and pushes until the skin of the chrysalis breaks at the butterflies shoulders. The butterfly pulls itself with great difficulty out of the chrysalis shell and hangs from it, pumping its wings slowly it pushes the fluids from it’s distended abdomen into its wings, inflating them slowly until they are stiff and straight.

If the butterfly were to fall too easily out of the chrysalis, it would not have the strength to pump its wings full of the fluid. The stunted wings would hang limply in a bundle at the doomed insects side and it will die. There is not an option here. The butterfly either engages in an intense and painful struggle or it dies.

We as humans need pain and need struggles to grow many times. Pain and discomfort serve many purposes and there is no way I can explore all of them here. Pain can mean we’re human and we live in a physical world. It is a sensation, a feeling. A bee sting means that we offended a bee and he is willing to give his life in order to offend us a little. Pain can be a warning. A hot stove burns us and we are careful not to put out hands there again. Pain can be growth. The aches and pains of childhood as our bodies stretch to new and unfamiliar heights are not bad, but merely a sign that we’ll not be looking quite so far up at the rest of the world very much longer. Pain is not bad, it is an indicator, a sign.

And yet, in spite of the necessity and normalcy, the elite of our culture push for protection of the body. Control.

The Christian perspective is different. The soul and the mind are more important because they exist eternally. The body is just a temporary home.

How To Win The Culture War

Romans 1:18-32 (ESV):

(18) For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. (19) For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. (20) For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. (21) For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. (22) Claiming to be wise, they became fools, (23) and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.

(24) Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to (25) because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves,

(26) For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; (27) and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.

(28) And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to what ought not to be done. (29) They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, (30) slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, (31) foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. (32) Though they know God’s decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.

This passage is contains the litany of sin from it’s roots, to it’s inception, to it’s fruition. Of particular importance is the fact that this litany is particularly applicable to a lifestyle of sin.

The process of temptation described in James 1:14-15 (ESV) is more universal in it’s application:

(14) But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. (15) Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.

James’ process applies to all in that even we as Christians are prone to temptation, lustful desires, sin, and spiritual death or dormancy.

Paul’s process and description is more applicable to the sin of lifestyle. From a consistent denial of God and His attributes, God will cast them down into degrading passions. If they will not exalt Him, He will deny them even ‘human’ decency.

But in our sinful state, the heart of man seeks approval, approbation, and acceptance. As our sins have crawled out of the closet and been accepted by others, they have gained courage and through courage, further acceptance. Eventually, and this is the state of our nation today, sin and acceptance reach critical mass and breaks out into the mainstream, demanding recognition as something other than what it is.

But how do we deal with this? The lines have been drawn, the gauntlet thrown down, our children are being indoctrinated in school and our cities are being cajoled into hosting sex-fests in their streets in the form of “gay pride parades”.

We’ve confronted them, attacked their ideology, beaten back their growth at times, but bit by bit they seem to be winning as people stop caring and say to themselves: “what’s so wrong about it, they aren’t hurting anybody”.

A key fact in any war is that those fighting FOR something have a distinct advantage over those fighting AGAINST something. A positive goal inspires confidence and wins allies, while a negative goal works against the human spirit bringing discouragement and desperation.

So far in our culture war, we’ve been fighting against the encroaching forces of multi-culturalism, sexual deviancy, and other forms of social decay. At times we remind ourselves that we’re fighting for our families and children and nation, but overall, it is a war of defense.

We have lost the high-ground though. The momentum is with the enemy. We are being backed into walls in nearly all fronts of this war. This is a good thing.

Yes, this is a good thing.

We now have something to fight for.

But what are we fighting for, and how do we wage that battle most effectively.

In the last year of blogging here at I, Pandora, I’ve come to realize the futility of forcing political change. Bringing about a political change may bring temporary gains, but we have to compromise. We force ourselves to accept less-than-optimal options in our leaders.

Political change is still important, very important. Those who stand in the gap for us are heroes who ought to be protected, and prayed over, and supported. But unless the hearts change, the same people will keep coming back with the same goals: to wipe out the influence and effectiveness of God’s word in the world.

Don’t be misguided, the people who champion the wrong ideas’ personal goals may be the forced societal acceptance of some deviance. But they are only the faces, they are not the enemy. They need true love, God’s love, as much or more so than any other.

No, the enemy is Satan. The deceiver. And it is in his impending and sure doom that we have our strength.

His goal is not acceptance of homosexuality, it is destruction of individuals in any way possible.

Our counter is the reaching of individuals in any way possible. And just as when Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, and it brought healing to those who saw it, and as Jesus, when He was lifted up on the cross, drew all men to Himself. Lifting God’s standard once again will draw men and women to Him.

The root cause, according to Paul, of the sin lifestyle is a refusal to recognize God, His attributes, and His truth. So we need to place God, His attributes, and His truth before them in an unimpeachable, undeniable, and undeniable way.

This is not done necessarily with posters and signs, slogans and shouts. But with lives lived wholly for Him.

The mission field is not just in Zimbabwe or Zambia, China or Croatia, or India. It may be in Indianapolis, or Sacramento, or Dallas, or Boston. For you it is wherever you are, whenever you are there. And if you’ve not started yet, it starts right now.

Your mission: to live your life wholly for God.

This does not mean perfection or even the illusion of perfection. God’s law and God’s love balance each other and provide guidance for us through our struggles and our triumphs.

The family is under assault, so shore up the breeches. Starting with as solid a foundation as can be found, Christ’s love, build your family with hard work and constant prayer. Grow it as large as God will give, and share and spread.

It is humorous, but conservative, loving, Christianity enjoys a distinct advantage over all alternate and deviant lifestyles even if only through the “Rabbit Method”: where we out-grow the deviant by means of procreation. (Soberingly, this is exactly how Muslims are taking over much of the world, by having large families).

Large families are not required, and I know many good people who choose a single life of service, or if they cannot have children, use their additional freedom to free energy to wage mighty war against the enemy.

The important thing is not that we have large families, but that we follow God’s call for our lives.

In our stable and strong, God-fearing, and God-glorifying relationships, we have something the rest of the world, including every religion and worldview and mythos, envies: peace.

Not a hypnotized, brainless, mind-numbing peace. But an despite-the-world-falling-around-us peace which comes from having the Master and Maker of all creation caring for us and promising that He’ll work everything together for our good.

That peaceful life, lived on ever lane and at each corner, in the car and on the roads. Lived in public and in private, at the grocery store and the lumber mill and the cannery. And yes, even on the battlefields around the world. Will draw all people.

So don’t beat your plowshares into swords or your rakes into Uzis. Using your plowshares and rakes to God’s glory will bring a far greater, far more lasting, and far more effective harvest.

American evangelicals are the wests best hope (American Thinker).

“its no the ppls fault”

In comments following the video I found this observation:

“its no the ppls fault its the roads not being salted fault”

Obvious schooling and literacy issues aside, this is a supremely immature reasoning and conclusion. But I fear it is all too commonplace today.

To read the comment literally, we see the fallacy of blaming an inanimate, amoral object. But to take the apparent, obvious, or implied meaning, the government is to blame.

Because the government wasn’t there to plow and salt the roads, these people have suffered damage to their property and cars. That’s what is being said.

What about life requires that the government be responsible for such things? Sure, the government owns and is responsible for maintenance of the roads. But are they required to avert any “act of God”, preventing them from hampering the free exercise of stupidity on the part of the citizens of that government?

I would argue that the government has a reasonable obligation to work to maintain the safety of those things it owns and maintains for specific use and benefit of it’s citizens. If inclement weather is expected and normal, reasonable foresight should be employed to allow an efficient and orderly clearing of the snow or ice. But the government bears no responsibility beyond reasonable protection.

These people driving, and every person engaging in the fruits of freedom and/or liberty, take their safety and security into their hands. Each person is responsible for acting in a manner which minimizes risk to themselves and others on their own. Not because the government requests or requires them to, but because it is the right thing to do.

The government does not have the power in and of itself to say that speeding is wrong. Instead, it has the responsibility demanded by ethics to set reasonable restriction to promote the maximal good to each individual while not inhibiting the liberties of all.

So these people in the video went out on a snowy day with the responsibility to be aware their cars would not operate in the way they are used to them operating. They should have driven at much slower speeds and operated generally with much more caution.

As technology builds up, shielding us from elements of nature, we tend to forget that nature is a much more powerful force than technology and operates on rules much more established and concrete.

Drive at your own risk.

Divorce Is Not Eco-nomical

As if the burden of divorce weren’t bad enough, people with failed marriages can be blamed for global warming, according to a study by Michigan State University.
Divorce Pains The Planet, CNet News

“If you have more households as a result of divorce, then you would need more housing units, and if you need to build more houses or apartments, that means you need more land, and that will contribute to urban sprawl,” he says.
-Jianguo “Jack” Liu in Marriage: Eco-friendlier Than Divorce?, USA Today

“A married household actually uses resources more efficiently than a divorced household,” said Jianguo Liu, a sustainability expert with Michigan State University.
Divorce Isn’t Resource Efficient, Study Finds, Seattle Times

If you thought divorce was bad for the kids, you should see what it does to the environment.
In Divorce Even The Environment Pays A Price, LA Times

I Pandora finds the evidence does not support claims that human energy use has a significant effect on global temperature. However, we do recognize the unsightly nature of waste and the issues of inefficient use of resources. And we realize the almost universally evil nature of divorce.

As such, if you can’t stay together for love, and you can’t stay together for the kids, and you’re just to d****d selfish and pig-headed to work to live with this person you used to love and promised to never leave, then maybe the fact that if you break up your making twice as much trash will give you pause…

Naw, didn’t think so. Pig.

Redemptoween

Halloween. Bugbear of knee-jerk non-involvists and new ‘favorite holiday of the religiously atheistic media and cultural leaders’. Where did it come from anyway? And can and should a Christian participate in it and to what extent?

I make no claims to historical accuracy in this article, merely stating what I’ve heard over the years and researched myself, all thrown into a big puddle and stirred until I get this… mess.

It is common to hear that Halloween is a night dedicated to the worship of Satan, the prince of evil and darkness. The favored decorations are dark on the nice side, and hideous on the bad side. Tales of ancestor worship and demon calling are frequent and true. Yes, it does happen.

The current version of Halloween borrows, as do most holidays we celebrate, from a plethora of traditions and belief systems. First we shall visit the Christian roots. The early Christians celebrated days when brave Christians laid down their lives as holidays. As persecution grew and the number of martyrs rose, it became impractical to even celebrate only your regional martyrs, and one day, the 1st of November, was dedicated to the celebration of the lives of those who gave their lives for Christ’s glory. Eventually, the rumor grew that on All Hallows Eve (Hallowe’en) God allowed the saints one day to walk the earth, visiting and comforting people and their loved ones and doing good deeds. This of course fueled the imaginations of people, feeding ghost stories and our natural fear of the unknown, the dark, and the dead.

The primary pagan roots of Halloween are Celtic. Druidism is an earth-worshiping, animistic, pan-theistic, evil religion which practiced, at various times, human sacrifice and erected marvelous structures facilitating it’s domination of the superstitious Celts. An brief but accurate description of the Druid’s hold on early Britain can be read in the early chapters of Charles Dickens’ A Child’s History of England (an excellent book for family and table reading). Around the time of Halloween has always been a time of harvest festivals, as the last of the summer and fall crops have been stored, the fields and woods were full of fat, lazy animals to hunt and kill. The storehouses of the industrious young civilizations were stuffed and the people were ready for one last wild fling before being confined to their hovels and huts by inclement weather. The Druids had convinced the populace that they were responsible for the success of each year, and that the god’s must be payed with ritualistic sacrifice in order to procure their blessing for the long winter and hope for the coming spring. The spiritism and human sacrifice and overall dark tone of the Druid religion permeated this time of the year for the pagan Celts. With the arrival of Saint Patrick in Ireland and other missionaries and conquering cultures such as the Romans, Druidism gave way to a hybrid Christianity, much as it did in South America, where a pagan reverence for the Dead mixed with a Christian knowledge of eternal life and an entirely human desire to see one’s loved ones again.

Halloween retains it’s Christian name: “All Hallows Eve”, and for most of us it retains a good theme, going into the neighborhood one last time to knock on all the doors and receive gifts and give greetings before the cold of winter chases us all indoors again. For a few it retains the pagan trappings of animal sacrifice, for others it involves getting drunk and/or high and naked, making pentagrams, lighting a fire, and chanting loudly at midnight and waking the neighbors.

For the vast majority it means walking your kids around the neighborhood worrying about razor blades in candy and never finding any (kids will digest ANYTHING) and waving hi to the neighbors who fuel your children’s sugar rush for the next 2 weeks.

For some Halloween is a time of remembering Luther’s 95 Theses, which he nailed to the door of the Wittenburg Cathedral on this day 490 years ago. His 95 arguments against the teachings of the Roman Catholic church set fire to the revivals of spirit and social and cultural upheaval and growth which started immediately thereafter and have continued to some extent even to this day.

Some even still remember the martyrs for the faith, whose numbers are growing at an ever greater rate as many nations seek to expunge the redemptive work of Christ from their borders.

But it is important to note that evil has not, cannot, and will not ever create anything new for itself. Evil is only capable of perverting things that are good, taking them out of balance and propriety, assigning more of less significance to them. That is all evil can and will ever be able to do.

God is capable of redeeming all things because He first created all things. Just as man was not made for the Sabbath, but the Sabbath for man, days and times and seasons have no inherent control over us, and can only affect us to the extent we allow ourselves to be controlled by them. The only thing we as Christians should allow to control us is Christ, and through His power we share in His overcoming the world. Greater is He that is in us, than he that is in the world. We are not given a spirit of fear, but of power, of strength, and of a sound mind. Our God has overcome the world, and nothing occurs without His knowing it and His plan and purpose directing it.

Mr. CleanEnglish LordHalloween, for me, is a time to enjoy the change of season, to remember the faithful who have given their lives for Christ, to visit the neighbors while enjoying costumes and goodies. These are pics of my costumes for Halloween 2005 and 2006. I went to work in these. The English Lord included poofy pants and leggings and THE most uncomfortable shoes ever, and I went trick-or-treating with several of my friends that night. It was fun. The other one is, obviously, Mr. Clean, and yes, I shaved my head. It was the first time ever, and it felt weird.

The important thing to remember is that we are called to be light in a dark world. The culture’s current view of Halloween reinforces very strongly the fact that we are indeed in a very dark world that desperately needs light. We are also called to do whatever we do for Him and His glory. If that is not our goal, whether we participate or not, we’re doing it wrong.

EDIT: Scott over at Verum Serum has his own response to kids he teaches and knee-jerk non-involvists.