Tag Archives: Paul

Why Jesus Would Not Vote For Obama

Disregarding the difficulties and ironies of Jesus voting for anybody, there is key information in the Bible which gives us a clear understanding of policies that God does not condone and by extension, would not vote for.

Besides the obvious ugly sin policy of legal abortion, the fiercely debated but no less wrong homosexual ‘marriage’ policies of various states, and the not-governments-responsibility of most social programs and pet projects, there are the social welfare policies. Policies which allow and even encourage people who will not work to continue in idleness. Policies which discourage people from earning their food and keep. Policies which encourage people to believe they are owed something merely for their existance.

Couched in the phraseology of “neighborliness” by Senator Barack Hussein Obama and “patriotism” by Senator Joseph Biden, those of us who make money are told we ought to pay more of our money to allow those ‘less fortunate’ to thrive.

How are they less fortunate?

My financial counselor asked me a key question on our first consultation: what was my greatest asset? It was my self, and now, my wife and I together. As long as we are and exist, our greatest asset is not one of our possessions or investments, but our potential.

True fortune is measured not by what we’ve achieved but by our potential. Every man’s potential is vast and unmeasured. By choosing a goal and doing all that is necessary to achieve that goal, man can change his fortune to wealth.

By choosing to live on the scraps of others, a man is squandering his fortune. By his own choice.

So what does Jesus have to do with this and why would He not support Obama?

Here are just three of the many Bible verses which speak regarding Social Welfare programs:

Don’t you remember the rule we had when we lived with you? “If you don’t work, you don’t eat.” And now we’re getting reports that a bunch of lazy good-for-nothings are taking advantage of you. This must not be tolerated. We command them to get to work immediately—no excuses, no arguments—and earn their own keep. Friends, don’t slack off in doing your duty.

2 Thessalonians 3:10-12 (The Message)

Is that not obvious? “If you don’t work, you don’t eat.” There is not much wiggle room there.

There are definitely cases where the rule ought to be applied with grace, such as the case of widows or the truly infirm. But even then, all work is not hard or demanding, and some things are capable of being done by anybody, almost regardless their condition.

Besides the obvious and immediate benefits of food, work and accomplishment encourage a healthy self-image as well as a correct view of the worth and value.

Appetite is an incentive to work; hunger makes you work all the harder.

Proverbs 16:26 (The Message)

Again, the need for food drives the will to work.

Don’t be misled: No one makes a fool of God. What a person plants, he will harvest. The person who plants selfishness, ignoring the needs of others—ignoring God!—harvests a crop of weeds. All he’ll have to show for his life is weeds! But the one who plants in response to God, letting God’s Spirit do the growth work in him, harvests a crop of real life, eternal life.

Galatians 6:7-8

God apparently takes this personally. To not work is to reap slothfulness. To succeed while not exerting yourself in good pursuits is something God does not smile upon.

All this to say, to those who couch their support for Obama in terms of his being most attuned to “WWJD” it would be well worth your while to check again your assumtions regarding what He would really do.

I work that I may support the necessary functions of government and then to support myself, my family, and those to whom I choose to give. Does a man who has trouble giving the smallest percentage of his own extensive wealth to charity have the right or deserve the ability to determine where I ought to spend mine?

I make no claim that Jesus would vote for McCain, but I know He has some deep questions to ask of Obama.

Husbands, Love Your Wives

I was talking to someone over the weekend about Ephesians 5:25-31, Paul’s instructions to married men, and he commented that he finds sermons on the preceding verses, Paul’s exhortations to married women, very common. Common to the neglect of the exhorting of married men. I’ve heard sermons on each, myself, and cannot judge either way as to which I’ve heard more of. But regardless of the issue, real or perceived, married men seem to me to not be learning much of this vital information prior to tying the knot.

In the blogosphere I found an older article detailing a practical but brief perspective on the Ephesians verses for men. And an even more explicit and holistic view of the requirements of the husband in marriage (note, this article is graphic, not pictorial, but graphic) as spelled out throughout the Bible.

Marriage is a beautiful thing, so I’ve been told and have observed. My parents have been married 28/29 years, or thereabouts. I’ve observed them learn to deal with things together as they’ve raised my siblings and myself (we did not make it easy). But together they have joy and I think they can say, looking back, that the love they shared on their wedding day was the least love they’ve shared since. Marriage is a joining, a merging of two different people into a single living unit. The joining and merging brings a broadened perspective, an enhanced effectiveness. In business classes we learned that a well-balanced relationship allows for a result greater than the sum of the individual parts. This rings true for a strong marriage. Individually we may attempt and succeed at great things, but together, standing on each others shoulders, in each others care and support, and in Christs love, there is little indeed that cannot be accomplished. And children. Not only are the effect tangible in this life while the two live, but their heritage continues in their children, surpassing even the memory of their own specific achievements.

Marriage is also a difficult thing. In the “Great Unified Theory of Everything” (GUTE) marriage falls under the category Power Tools. A powerful tool can be easy and difficult at the same time, both using and mastering. A power tool can do great good and great evil, usually not at the same time. I have seen my parents argue, mostly when I was younger, and I recall the fear and insecurity those arguments gave me. But with time I can see how my mom and dad worked to deepen conversation and communication between each other, setting aside time each day to spend together. Usually right when dad got home from work, if something else wasn’t going on right then, he and mom would go into a room alone and talk. That took dedication, creating a habit in what could be a very hectic time of the day. As dad made more money he had the time and means to get involved in several hobbies, one of which is Civil War Reenacting. He’s always enjoyed camping, but my mom was never much for camping. In the past camping usually ended up being a “just us boys” time, which was good. But with reenacting there were enough amenities around that mom could go and enjoy herself too. But he also sets aside weekends several times each year that he and mom will leave for a quick weekend. Sometimes they go to the coast, sometimes they go to the mountains. Dad spends lots of time looking up Bed & Breakfasts that are well recommended and off the beaten path and he and mom will spend a weekend away, another honeymoon. Their love is palpable.  Marriage is hard work, especially when children and life seem to be trying their utmost to pull you apart individually and as a couple, and making habits of togetherness and making the special effort to get away and be just together is of supreme importance.

Marriage is a wonderful thing, so I’ve heard. Like all wonderful things it takes a lot of work, hard work. The more work that is put in, the greater the potential. Realizing the potential is up to each of us individually, but for the couple the rewards are greatest together.

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).

Congratulations, It’s A God

Originally posted December 18th, 2006.

Pastor told a story of a Christmas play written and performed by K and 1st graders for a church. The play proceeded normally enough until Joseph and Mary arrived at the stable at which time there’s a knock at the “door” and Joseph welcomes a Doctor in a white coat and bearing a stethoscope. The doctor proceeds to Mary who is behind some hay bales and groaning and straining sounds occur normal to a birth scene. After the final cry and a baby wail the Doctor comes out to Joseph who has been pacing nervously across the stage during this time and says to him “Congratulations, it’s a God.”

What wonder must Joseph and Mary have felt in that time. They knew better than any other the amazing nature of the child Mary bore. Perhaps they didn’t grasp the all the implications pursuant to such an event, but the amazement factor itself must have been nearly overwhelming.

As good Jews they were well aware of the awesome nature of God and knew only a little of the Love He showed completely through His son. They knew Him as unapproachable and Holy. They couldn’t even say His name. And yet here He had given them a son, His Son, His ONLY Son. He’s entrusted them His heart. And in the same way He’s taken the ultimate risk with each of us, He’s given each of us His heart through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, whether we accept it or not. Think of the father, mother, lover, going out on a limb, as it were, setting themselves up for endless hurt and betrayal if their son, daughter, lover, ignores their love and spites them. God gave His life, laying it on the live for each one of us, individually. No greater love has no one than this, than that He lays down His life for another. Christmas is only the beginning, Easter is only the epic moment in time when timeless God Himself changed the course of His Story to our dim eyes. The end comes when each of us dies and is brought to reckoning. It won’t be a “were you good enough to shave off enough days of purgatory” as the Catholics believe. It won’t be a “am I in a good mood did you kill enough infidels or do other feats to further Islam” such as Muslims believe. It will be “did you accept my gift.”

When the good Doctor says “Congratulations, the baby is healthy, and it’s a God” He’s given to each of us a gift that we can accept or reject. All the rest are just bonus points, or filthy rags, as Paul calls them.

Ron Paul?

A friend of mine supports Ron Paul for president. Admittedly, his libertarian views are very appealing to many people feeling as though the Republican mainstream has hung them out to dry. However, there are deep issues that I have with Ron Paul, very deep issues.

My friend and I got into a discussion regarding Ron Paul, and they have graciously given me permission to post it here:

Matthew:

Please tell me you only joined the group supporting Ron Paul as a joke.

Friend:

No, I wasn’t joking. Why should I? Go ahead and convince me! =] I’m game.

Matthew:

His political platform is mostly appealing, I do agree with that. However, he supports pulling us out of a war that, regardless of whether you agree with the necessity of the war or no, you must understand to pull out is to give a victory to an enemy who will not accept our defeat graciously but who will next bring the war to our doorstep again. His consistency on the issues he is most vocal about on the campaign trail is also less than stellar, with a marked propensity for bringing “pork” projects to his district.

Finally, and I know he himself does not espouse these beliefs, but white supremacists have jumped on his campaign, contributing money and support. Ron Paul has not repudiated these supporters or returned their money or prevented their support.

He is not a leader in the sense America needs. And while the the pickings are few in the field, I think of all the candidates running with an (R) after their name, Paul is least qualified.

Friend:

We are in a war that can’t be won. Don’t you remember that Bush declared victory over 4 years ago? Since then, 3,735 American soldiers have lost their lives. If that is victory, then we can’t win this war.

Do you remember Vietnam? We lost that war, and had the common sense to get out of there, (although it wasn’t until we lost 58,000 of our guys) and now? We trade with them! Our relations with Vietnam are as they should be with any country!

If a forthcoming attack is your concern, think about this. When Ron Paul talks about bringing our troops home, he’s talking about bringing home ALL of the troops from over 700 military bases, in over 160 different countries, all over the world. We would not no longer be growing resentment in any of these countries, who all deserve, as much as we do, to run their countries how the want, and not have a bigger, more powerful government come and tell them how to live. How would you feel if China or Russia came over here, and built 15 military bases or more, and started telling us how to run our lives? Would you sit back, and let them? I wouldn’t… I would do everything in my power, (which isn’t much=]) to stop them!

So, who would you stand behind for the next president of the US?

Matthew:

First, what about the war we are currently in is failing so very badly that there is no way the war can be one? Have you followed the news beyond what has been force-fed us by the media? Read the post here to see one side of the new growth of freedom in Baghdad. Even the New York Times, a paper arguably more invested than any other in our defeat in Iraq, last week published on the front page an article telling of the good that is occurring there.

We lost Vietnam because the politicians (the revered but Clintonesque JFK and the worst president in history Lindon Baines Johnson) would not allow the military to prosecute the war as it needed to be. The president selected the military targets, micromanaging far beyond what any true and wise leader would have or should have done. There was a small but vocal contingent at home which proclaimed the injustice of the war, getting their faces (and other body parts) smeared all over the evening news as our country fought for it’s soul. Public figures such as Jane Fonda openly consorted with the enemy while our soldiers, not allowed to fight as they should have, were captured and imprisoned and tortured. We still do not know the fate of many of those imprisoned, as the Vietnamese Communists who gained power through the pride and ineptitude of our leaders at the time, persecuting and killing many of their own countrymen as well as our servicemen.

Comparing that just but unjustly-prosecuted war with the conflict we are currently in, the times when the current was going poorly coincide with times when the military leadership has taken away responsibility and power from their field-level commanders, much as in the Vietnam war. One of the the reasons freedom from tyranny is succeeding right now and we are experiencing success in our military operations is that the generals are giving direction and responsibility and allowing the people under them to work and decide and wage their battles as they know best.

And regarding the justice of the war. Who do you believe attacked us in 1992, attempting to topple the trade towers? And again in 2001? The same people made both attempts. And regarding specifically the portion of the conflict in Iraq, yes, we have not found weapons of mass destruction. But operating on the intelligence we had then, all the leaders, not just Bush, not just Republicans, not just ‘hawks’, and not just Americans, but the UN security council (regardless of the morality of their position) supported us in our use of force to depose Saddam Hussein and protect the world from any furtherance of his tyranny, either on his own people or on others through his state-sponsoring of terrorists and their weapons systems. Important to remember in this is that while we have not found any actual WMDs we have not found evidence that they were not or never there. Instead, the consensus is that they were trucked across the border to Syria and Iran, both countries with despotic governments who are not shy about broadcasting their intentions of world domination by their religion by their leadership.

As far as defense goes. The worst defense is the kind where all your assets are kept close by. With the world getting “smaller” as technology and transportation move more and more people further and further more and more quickly, and with weapons capable of striking anyplace from anywhere in mere hours, being “on-site” and in the region of conflict is a much more effective defense.

Regarding the bad feelings we are breeding by our presence in the regions. First, America is the only superpower in the history of the world which has neither forced it’s culture upon those it is around as superior, nor have we failed to relinquish sovereign control of the nations we’ve fought in to legitimate governments of those nations in most cases (several islands in the Pacific being the only exceptions to that). Instead, we fight alongside indigent warriors to free their nations, then we spend billions upon billions of dollars to shore up those nations economies and social structures. The hotbeds of hatred spring up wherever they will regardless of our presence. And to remove from the area would only grant unwelcome power to an unworthy underclass of malcontents and misfits.

I am not sure who I’m supporting for the nomination. I will support any Republican nominee in the main presidential race because: 1, they are all and each morally and pragmatically superior to any of the Democrat nominees, and 2, third party candidates are never a viable option except to take votes away from one of the two main party’s candidate (yes, liberal third partiers… keep up the good work, grin).

As far as the nominees, I’m becoming more and more convinced that Rudy is bad news, and his promises to set up conservative judges are likely to be empty. Romney, I think most of his detractors are picking at straws in their critiques of him, but I do not think I’ll vote for him in the nomination for his lack of history to his moral beliefs regarding abortion. Thompson is (little) talk and I think he’ll fade away soon. Huckabee looks good but I’ve heard those close to him call him a pro-life liberal. I think he’d make an excellent VP if given a position of counsel and some authority. I’m not sold on him.

Of all these, I think Huckabee, if he shows strength continuing into these upcoming primaries, is my preferred choice, pending a bit more investigation.

We didn’t continue the conversation further mainly due to busy-ness.

Huckabee is looking to be less and less of a man I’d want to lead this country. He’d make an admirable vice-president, but his fiscal and many of his social programs are not good. He does not see that the best way to help people is to remove all government-sponsored assistance and as much government-required hindrance and and encourage as much private assistance as possible.

Instead his proposals include large amounts of money to be given to people by the government. Government money is never free and it always comes with strings. And it costs you and me. Why not just take less to start with?

But Ron Paul is the last person this nation needs. He does not appreciate the necessity of remaining in Iraq to bring it to a place of stability. A process in which much progress has already been made. He is not a man of his word.