Leftist progress on diversity looks to be moving right along. I’m guessing they have a schedule for undoing the dispersion of Babel. We’ll see how that works out.
Trembling as I am to utter the following blasphemy against one of the Secular Man’s highest articles of faith, it appears to me that segregation is pretty much a natural thing for most people. If we don’t segregate by race, we do it by sex, religion, income, the type of work you do, your IQ, or even your status as a manager or worker bee. I’ve noted that the Ivy League humanities majors don’t pal around with the NASCAR set a whole lot, not that either side of this travesty of segregation is complaining about it, because each side is equally convinced that the other side is peopled with bigots and idiots. In fact, NASCAR people won’t even hang around NHRA. Oh, well.
So people prefer to be around folks who are like themselves. But somehow, acknowledging this obvious fact makes me a blasphemer in the eyes of the Secular Man. Like Winston said in 1984, “theyll shoot me i don’t care theyll shoot me in the back of the neck i dont care”.
There are exceptions to the general trend toward segregation, sometimes benign, sometimes not. There are cases where we let students come over here and send ours over there. No harm there. If you want a kid from France in your home for the school year, more power to you, sez I.
And there are Christian societies who send doctors, farmers, engineers and whatnot. They have an ulterior motive, of course, but it’s an open secret. They’ll treat lepers and show folks how to have safe drinking water in exchange for a chance to explain about Jesus and the cross. There is definitely no harm in that. And — speaking only of my own premillennial views — Christianity decidedly does not teach us to take over the world by force. If there is to be any force, Jesus will impose it in person when He arrives. Post-mill folks, I’ll let you speak for yourselves on this.
Other cases are not quite so benign. Caesar desegregated the Italians and the Gauls, but not to help the latter. Likewise the Assyrians in Israel, the Babylonians in Judah, and so on.
In general, I’d say anybody who thinks it’s the destiny of his group to take over the world by force is a threat. In modern times, the Communists and Fascists fit this category and were proud of it. There was a time when Americans understood this and reacted against it. The old adage about being better dead than red was a way of acknowledging the open threat posed by Communism while saying that we intended to push back with whatever force it took.
And to get back where I started from, Moslems fit this category. Islam intends to take over the world, by persuasion where it can, by force where it must.
In the vast majority of cases, your Moslem co-worker is no threat to you or anybody else. He’s just a guy trying to get by, raise his kids to be good Moslems, and keep his wife from feeling like a conspicuous fool wearing her burqa.
The problem arises when there are enough Moslems to form a society that runs along Islamic lines. Because Islam expects to own Earth and everyone on it. The Secular Man, wearing his feelings on his “coexist” bumper sticker, is just not prepared to deal with the reality of an Islam that will not rest until everyone bows to Mecca. The Secular Man’s refusal to see a threat where there clearly is one looks a lot like a suicide pact.
But the biggest source of influence over the way the government governs is the government itself.
And here’s how it works. Something like 148 million Americans are receiving some form of stipend from the government. Government is essentially buying their votes with money confiscated from the 90 million private sector workers who pay for it all. So maybe it’s true that we have an oligarchy or plutocracy settling in upon us, but the “evil” corporations are by no means the dominant players in this field. The money laundering from the government dwarfs all other forms of paid influence, whether it’s from the Koch brothers on the right or Warren Buffet and George Soros on the left.
It’s a victory for Big Irony that many of the people complaining the loudest about the influence of Big Corporations are actually part of Big Government and seem completely blind to their role in the most pervasive and ruinous corruption scheme of all.
Struggling families can’t find a reason to stick it out. People give up and give over to their pet sins. People born, raised, and married in the church suddenly go secular, not out of any sense of offense or hostility, but because they just don’t care any more.
So why are you still plodding along with a crowd that seems to be losing so badly? Maybe it’s because you’re part of the gray-haired set that still does all that Churchianity stuff (including Wednesday night). Maybe it’s because America isn’t the only place in the world, and in some other places like China, Christianity is growing like mad. Maybe you stick around because you’re one of those fortunate folks still plugged into a dynamite church, and you really enjoy it.
Here’s a reason for you to ponder: You should keep the faith because Jesus is alive. The only real reason to get into Christianity in the first place, if I could say it like that, is because it is true. And the central truth of Christianity is that He rose from the dead. If He rose from the dead, there is every reason in the world to continue faithful regardless of what the rest of society does.
If Jesus didn’t rise from the dead, there never was a reason to be a Christian. In the early days of Christianity, Paul said that if Christ has not risen, then “we of all men are most miserable.” Why suffer for a dead god? What sense does that make? We don’t suffer any serious persecution in America, so let’s apply the thought more accurately to us: why deny yourself the pleasures of a hedonistic life to honor the memory of a dead guy?
But if Jesus is alive, that changes everything. That would mean that He has power over death. It would mean He really is the Son of God. It would mean His church is destined to become the central focus of history. It would mean that following Jesus matters, not just to your kids or your person sense of stick-tuitiveness, or the moral tidiness of your little corner of the world, but it matters on the biggest and most cosmic scope imaginable.
And if Jesus is alive, it would mean that death is not the end of life that we all thought it was, but just a pause before we transition into something far greater He has prepared for us. It would mean that our ultimate conclusions about life stand upon a living hope. And hope is the thing that makes us keep on keeping on.
So I’m still a Christian because the tomb was emptied when Christ came out of it alive.
But now Obama’s failures are starting to earn compound interest. Obama, who years ago helped bring about the decline of America’s manned space program — not that he did this by himself; he had plenty of help — now has another problem on his hands in the matter of Ukraine.
He can’t afford to anger the Russians too much because we depend on them to get our astronauts and supplies to/from the space station. We’re in one of those moments when you realize that great nations have to remain strong in every area. America’s space program has been the envy of the world for 60 years, that is, until the last shuttle flight. Now we have no way to get people and cargo to the space station.
So Mr. Obama will be low key in his reactions to the Russian dealings in Ukraine. It would be too embarrassing to have the Russians tell America to kiss off next time we need one of our astronauts to bum a ride in a Soyuz spacecraft.
And I feel I need to add something here. I am not ashamed of America, but I am ashamed of our self-imposed weakness and immorality after years of secular, Socialist-leaning misrule. The looming problems confronting our astronauts are the kinds of weird, unique gotchas that crop up when foreign policy is dominated by the wishful, utopian thinking of liberal academics instead of a hard-headed determination to deal with facts as they are. Russia is a powerful nation that sees itself as our rival. Mr. Putin is a smart, tough ex-KGB agent and a fierce nationalist. He plays to win and won’t hesitate to spill blood to achieve his goals. Only blind folly could have failed to see that and act accordingly. Putting our space program into a state of dependency on the Russian program is beyond naïve.
So remember that next time a liberal politician tells you America is disliked around the world, embarks on a worldwide apologize-for-America tour, and offers a former KGB agent one of those ludicrous red reset buttons.
The physical universe tells us it had a beginning. The sun isn’t merely shining; it is burning up. The world isn’t merely turning; it is spinning down to a stop. Natural processes everywhere are in a state of decay and decline. The available energy in the universe is a consumable resource. There’s an end point when the mainspring of the whole cosmos will stop ticking. Therefore, it had to have been wound up at some point in the past. So the physical universe isn’t eternal.
So something else must have been here before there was a universe. Whatever that was, it must have been eternal and must have had the capacity to bring the universe into being.
When you drive through the South and see a 1000-acre tract of pine trees planted in rows, equally spaced along the row and all the same age, you don’t have to ask if somebody did that. When I look at the far more complex arrangements of DNA, it’s obvious that a mighty intelligence made this. DNA contains the coding needed to duplicate itself. But a process capable of creating a DNA molecule from scratch simply does not exist in nature. Nothing even remotely approaching this degree of sophistication has ever been observed, not in nature, nor even in man’s most advanced laboratories.
So something eternal and powerful was there before the universe existed. And it had the capacity to bring the universe into being, wind up the spring, and then release the energy through myriads of the most intricately designed mechanisms. Such a being is intelligent beyond all the reckoning of man.
People have a moral component to their nature. Ms. Antony shows this when she asks that we all work for peace. Nice thought, though I wish she’d explain why, on atheistic principles, peace is better than war. After all, isn’t evolution driven by conflict and winnowing away the unfit so that only the strongest and smartest survive to breed again? Here’s a case where evolutionists are better than their principles. They generally wish the world were better — and “better” is defined in moral terms.
Furthermore, there is, for lack of a better term, a genuine reality underlying morals. We aren’t merely displeased when brutes kidnap little girls and sell them into sexual slavery. No, this is really and truly evil, and wrong. And it’s not just that we feel happy about a man who would redeem little slaves out of their bondage. No, such a deed is really and truly good and right.
The fact that morality cannot be derived from nature is not an argument from gaps in our knowledge. Rather, it’s plain to see that there is no arrangement of particles and forces that can ever account for a moral right and wrong because morality involves not just an assessment of facts, but an assertion of authority. Morality is the claim, coming from outside your own head, that you ought or ought not do something. And “ought” inherently arrives in the form of a command. Morality sees what is wrong and authoritatively forbids it. Morality sees what is right and authoritatively commands it.
The origin of morality, then, is very much like the origin of the physical universe. It’s here; it’s real, and it defies natural, material explanation. It demands a source that is outside of this world, transcendent, and that was capable of implanting it in the human heart when man was first formed.
So — just building the argument — something eternal brought the universe into being, something that was powerful enough to do it, intelligent enough to design it, and this Being possessed a moral code which it then hard wired into the hearts of men.
It’s an interesting question as to why, on naturalist/materialist principles, people should have ever evolved to be capable of wondering about what could be outside this physical dimension. Where’s the survival value in such a massive and stressful distraction? Or to take the question a level deeper, how do matter and energy interact in such a way as to produce conscious beings who ponder things higher than matter and energy?
Ms. Antony herself experiences the draw of the transcendent but drops it too soon. The real question is what a sense of transcendence is leading you to. Being a Christian, it’s obviously my opinion that God created this in us to lead us to Him. Paul told the Athenians that we “feel after Him,” (Acts 17:27) clearly expecting that even pagan men would have been open minded enough to investigate an intuition shared by virtually all people.
We Christians find our sense of transcendence filled, satisfied, yet heightened and completed by knowing our God through His Son, Jesus. People from other religions testify of their version of the same sense of transcendence. It’s not my purpose to address those experiences, only to say that whether we’re making out shapes in a fog or seeing in the full light of day, something is there, and we all sense it to some degree. And although the argument is not dispositive, I can’t frame a better explanation for a sense of transcendence than to propose that God has indeed set “eternity in our hearts” (Eccl 3:11) as a way to both prompt us to seek Him and as a way to experience Him once He is found.
The chief way God chose to reveal Himself to man was through Jesus. The officers sent to arrest Him said, “Nobody ever spoke like this man.” We exhaust all the superlatives when we consider Him. His teachings set the standard for goodness even among those who reject Him. He led such a life that those who sought His ruin could accuse Him only by lying. Without money, without armies, without political connections, without allies, without any access to the levers of power, having died young, Jesus did more to change the world for good than all who ever came before or after.
And He rose from the dead. Yes, His followers reported many other miracles He did, turning water to wine, walking on water, feeding multitudes out of a sack lunch.
But the miracle of His resurrection was the story they were all, to man, willing to be tortured and die for the privilege of telling it, not because they had anything to gain by it, but because they undeniably believed it to be true. If there is a God such as I have described, and if God became a man, I would expect Him to be a man like Jesus.
So that’s it. It’s why I think God exists and has revealed Himself to us through His Son, Jesus.
First, Antony says, “I deny that there are beings or phenomena outside the scope of natural law.” This, of course, is no argument at all. It’s just assuming the conclusion. Presupposing materialism merely evades the debate about whether God exists. The Christian idea of God is that He is transcendent, meaning that He is “above” or “beyond” or “outside” the universe. Looking for God by material methods is like prospecting for diamonds with a metal detector. Wrong tool.
In her second argument, Antony says religious people can’t all agree on what God is, what He is like, or whether there are more gods than one. This is all true, and all irrelevant. For the sake of argument, let’s assume that all religious people are hopelessly muddled on the nature of God. Does this mean they’re all equally deceived on the existence of God? Not at all. Even in a total fog, people can know something is out there without knowing any details about it.
Antony then says she cannot reconcile the existence of evil with the existence of God. Beg pardon, but what is this “evil” she speaks of? The existence of categories like “good” and “evil” assumes a Supreme Authority who establishes what’s good and what’s not. And consider again Antony’s statement, “I deny that there are beings or phenomena outside the scope of natural law.” Yet the very categories of good and evil are outside of natural law. You cannot derive morality from Newton’s laws or the Schrödinger equation. That requires a transcendent source.
On the other hand, if good and evil are not real categories, if they’re just cultural norms or her own private intuitions, then her objection vanishes. Her argument amounts to, “I’m displeased (or we are); therefore, there is no god,” which is absurd.
But Ms. Antony is left to ponder the motions of her own heart. Why is she outraged by rape or brutality? Who cares, and why should anyone care, if orphans starve, tyrants strut, armed gangs pillage and plunder, girls are bought and sold, and all the rest of human misery is played out before our eyes? If Ms. Antony knows anything at all, she knows there’s Something Big moving out there in the fog.
And following that, Ms. Antony should be the first to accept religious experiences. After all, she’s had a big one. She’s felt the wrong of this fallen, sinful world and felt the need to put it all back right. That didn’t evolve from a big cloud of hydrogen gas. God has set eternity in our hearts, and that’s what it sounds like when people pay attention to it, even a little bit.
But now a bar owner in California says he’ll refuse service to state legislators who vote for anti-gay legislation. Actually, he went a bit farther and said he’d deny them entry to his bar.
I’m thinking his valiant pro-gay stand isn’t likely to cost him a lot of money. How many Christians are clamoring to enter a gay bar in California?
Still, the principle being established here should tell every Christian that it’s past time to gird up the old loins. Christian bakers are fair game for discrimination suits if they transgress against the Secular Man’s homodoxy on the grounds that public businesses have to accept whatever the public accepts.
To borrow from Spurgeon, I’ll adventure to prophesy that anti-Christian bar owners will be immune from suits on the same grounds. Yet — lest we all forget — Californians voted against homosexual marriage, even going so far as to forbid it in their state constitution. So it’s clear that the actual public in California accepts anti-gay legislators just fine. But you can be certain that the bar owner, should he get sued for discrimination, will get a pass.
Christians should be waking up to the fact that we’re in a fight. And to paraphrase Mordecai to Esther, don’t think this won’t ever touch you.
Zimri took over and reigned for about a week. Another servant named Omri found out Baasha was dead and came after Zimri. Zimri neither fought nor fled, but went into his own house and burned it down upon himself. Moral: It’s easier to take over than it is to actually keep order, and once order is lost, you don’t have a lot of options.
Omri was a wicked king and plunged Israel deeper into ruinous idolatry. Moral: A guy who just wants to be in charge is about the last man you want in power.
Omri’s son Ahab eventually became king. The Bible describes Ahab as worse than all who came before him. He married Jezebel who was even worse than he was. Moral: Getting rid of drunks, killers, and tyrants doesn’t mean things are about to get better. The son might make you wish for his daddy back. And beware the tyrant’s wife.
During Ahab’s reign the prophet Elijah called for a drought that lasted for years. Moral: When the right leadership arrives, the fight isn’t over; it’s just starting, and you may dislike his methods.
At Mount Carmel, God spoke by fire from heaven. Israel, convinced, repented. They acknowledged that the Lord is God, not Baal, and executed the idolatrous priests. Then the rain came. Moral: Fixing a country starts with fixing hearts.
Bad timing for her announcement, though, coming right after the administration has been cheesecake grinning and doing happy hands over what a great American blessing it is to escape “job lock” by getting fired.
We should all savor this rare moment of unanimity in the political world with both Republicans and Democrats saying that ObamaCare is a failure. The GOP says it’s a failure because (among other things) it makes people lose their jobs. The Democrats say it’s a failure because ObamaCare job losses are only mythical, leaving millions of hapless citizens still locked in a job.
Is this a great country or what?