Thursday, December 31, 2015
Wednesday, December 30, 2015
Wednesday, December 23, 2015
Tuesday, December 22, 2015
Naive Religionists Eager To Find Shackles Under Their Nonsectarian Commemorative Photosynthesizing Lifeform
Observers of America's cultural situation witnessed something similar in the developments that unfolded surrounding the 2015 Starbuck's Christmas cup. For whatever reason, the purveyor of shockingly overpriced caffeinated beverages decided to go with a plain red cup unadorned by any additional ornamentation with the exception of the company's mermaid logo. Absent were the snowflakes or decorations of Christmas cups past.
Christian Evangelist Joshua Feuerstein responded that this design alteration was akin to removing Christ from the celebration of His birth. Most Christians shrugged off such a reaction with a laugh or two, remarking that they really didn't care as they never purchased a $7.00 cup of coffee in the first place and weren't about to begin doing so now.
Others such as Lutheran theologian Chris Roseborough reflected that it is the duty of actual Christians rather than retailers to take the true meaning of the holiday to the broader unbelieving world. Still others such as Southern Seminary President and former Southern Baptist functionary Richard Land assured that there will indeed be a boycott of Starbucks nevertheless just to assure the captains of commerce that conservative
Christians are still capable of exerting economic influence. Yet an additional perspective contends that, since lack of a snowflake on a red cup has got to be the flimsiest of evidence of a war against Christmas that one could come up with, that must mean the war against Christmas must be about as real as flying reindeer. However, children born the day I published my first column regarding the effort to undermine Christmas are now nearly old enough to legally spike their eggnog.
These deprivations of liberty and subversions of culture have occurred with such regularity that I was able to assemble a sufficient number of these holiday-themed columns into my first book published in 2006 titled “Yuletide Terror & Other Holiday Horrors” and am well on my way to completing an even longer sequel. Among these apparently non-existent incidents ranked students denied the opportunity to attend a performance of “The Christmas Carol” because of the work's holiday-specific content, municipalities terrified to refer to their celebratory greenery by the traditional nomenclature, and students forbidden from distributing to classmates something as simple as a candy cane accompanied with a card interpreting the confection's origin from a religious perspective.
Even more disturbing than either Christians that don't celebrate Christmas over objections as to what they perceive as the holiday's questionable origins or outright unbelievers wanting to censor the Gospel message because of the offense of the cross comes an additional outlook that is apparently aroused by the prospect of cultural subjugation. This particular viewpoint was articulated in a ChristianPost column titled “Why Christians Should Lose The Christmas Culture War” by Jared Byas. Of his particular bias, Mr. Byas writes, “For me, defending God means letting go of 'Merry Christmas' so my non-Christian neighbors feel respected when I invite them to the holiday table. For me, keeping Christ in Christmas is not about winning the culture war --- but about losing it.”
If that is how Jared Byas gets his Christmas jollies, that is his own business. But just because his mental lights exhibit the symptoms of a loose bulb, there is no reason the remainder of us must also. If your neighbor is such a burro excretory orifice that they have a mental breakdown at the sight of religious symbols or even decorations where the religious meaning might not be quite as obvious, is there really much of a point in inviting them to this hypothesized nonsectarian holiday table? If we are to gradually set aside the traditions that characterize this particular season, perhaps the first to go is pretending to care about those that you barely give the time of day to the remainder of the year.
It might be one thing to tone down one's in your face religiosity in the attempt to reach out to an acquaintance overtly hostile towards true spirituality. However, this attitude of abject surrender is not without profound consequences.
Those such as Jared Byas elevating nicety to the status of something akin to the Prime Directive from Star Trek have failed to realize that God establishes different missions or objectives for what are conceived of as the distinct social spheres or what might be referred to as orders of creation in Augustinian theology. For example, Romans 13:3-4 stipulates, “For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil...For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid: for he beareth not the sword in vain for he is the minister God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. (KJV).”
However, for someone that is thought of as a traditional minister in terms of church office that administers the sacraments or delivers the public proclamation of God's Word to draw a sword to settle an acrimonious debate on what color the new carpet in the sanctuary would be or to resolve a heated doctrinal disagreement in Sunday school class would be for such a pastor to overstep the boundaries of appropriate authority. Translated in terms of the Christmas issue, it might be in good taste that, if you invite the adherent of another faith over for Christmas, you don't berate them up one end and down the other as to the shortcomings of their errant belief unless they first proceed to attack you in like manner.
However, a culture or nation cannot necessarily afford to be as lenient in terms of its standards and foundational assumptions. For example, those that do not share in the assumption that values Christmas as a cherished celebration should be allowed to verbalize that they do not, articulate the reasons why, and pretty much allowed to continue along in their affairs without bodily harm or without fear of such to an extent that a person steeped in a common sense realism would deem sufficiently reasonable. However, that does not mean that the majority that value, celebrate, and derive meaning from the comprehensive narrative source from which Christmas is derived should be required to cower in silence for fear of upsetting those that do not or of receiving punishment for having done so.
In the attempt to position themselves as profoundly pious, it is quite evident that some fail to comprehend the full implications of what they are actually advocating. Jared Byas writes, “For me, keeping the Christ in Christmas is not about winning the culture war --- but about losing it.”
As in any conflict, sometimes the battles go on for so long and become so acrimonious that the involved parties can end up forgetting that for which they are fighting. The term “culture war” gained widespread notoriety in Pat Buchanan's speech at the 1992 Republican convention. In the address, the political analyst and former presidential candidate gave rhetorical voice to the proverbial Silent Majority noticing then that the embrace of progressivism and permissiveness on the part of various institutions such as academia, media and government was resulting in symptoms of noticeable decline throughout American culture and society.
Therefore, in calling for a surrender in the culture war those of the viewpoint shared by Mr. Byas think that what they are calling for is a truce on the part of all parties to simply play nice on the part of all parties irrespective of creed. What they are inadvertently giving the green light to is an anything goes mentality that will eventually result in the worst depravities and possibly even atrocities imaginable.
The veracity of this observation is already playing itself out in regards to the gay marriage issue. After standing up for years against the steady drumbeat to normalize this particular moral corrosion, many sincere Christians finally relented. They essentially said, “Fine, go ahead and do as you please in the privacy of your own bedroom. Just don't expect the remainder of us to stand around applauding in approval.”
This armistice of don't ask don't tell did not last long in terms of history's lengthy reach. For throughout this unfolding cultural revolution, the propagandists and social engineers insisted that the love between a couple of any combination imaginable was not dependent upon a piece of paper. But nearly as soon as those attempting to order their thoughts and their lives in compliance with the sanctified and the holy began to make peace with the fact that much of society was going to recognize such unnatural couplings as perfectly ordinary, additional blows were landed by the ephors of the judiciary that those objecting to the solemnization of wanton carnality would also be required to render the legal equivalent of acceptance and adulation.
In a court ruling upholding the right of conscience for the marrying couple but apparently not for the objecting merchant, a baker was threatened with financial ruination and the profound psychological trauma resulting from such for doing little more than refusing to bake a cake for a wedding that the baker believed to be an abomination in the eyes of God and for a couple not even likely to remain faithful to one another within the next couple of years anyway.
Libertines will snap why can't the baker just go ahead and bake the cake? Traditionalists can retort why can't the couple simply find another baker (which shouldn't be too difficult given that those of the couple's boudoir proclivities are often quite skilled in those crafts requiring a creative flair).
So what other freedoms and liberties is Jared Byas willing to surrender when he hoists the white flag in the culture war? Edmund Burke admonished that all it takes for evil to win is for good men to do nothing.
At the University of Mississippi, not only has the word “Christmas” been banned because it “connoted too much Christianity on campus” but so has the traditional color combination of red and green, having been replaced with red, blue, and silver. Commissars at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville decreed that in the future staff and student organizations must eliminate all religious themes and cultural allusions associated with designated celebration periods commonly referred to as holidays. But do such acts of censorship also apply to Muslim or secularist Jewish populations as well?
One waits with anticipation to hear of the commencement of orgies and human sacrifice. Think that remark goes a little too far?
It must be pointed out that the Nazis were also big on removing Christ and Christmas in favor of generic winter celebrations venerating nature, the state, and the COMMUNITY. As to the orgies, the University of Mississippi has changed the name of its celebration from the festive yet dignified “Grand Ole Christmas” to “Hotty Totty Holidays”. And with a name like that bringing to mind drunkenness and lewd behavior, academic administrators will still gawk on dumbfounded and flabbergasted at the expansion of the alleged rape culture supposedly reaching epidemic proportions on campuses across the country.
From the way Byas formulates his argument, it is assumed that insisting that the existence of Christmas be recognized is an inherently selfish act. This is evident in the phrase ...laying down my demand that the coffee shop I share with my non-Christian neighbors 'privilege' my religion.” The word “privilege” was no doubt deliberately selected in the attempt to link this issue with the revolutionary fervor of the Black Lives Matter movement with its constant drum beat of “White privilege” in the hopes of eroding resistance to increasingly extravagant demands. But are the motives for demanding a generalized respect for Christmas necessarily an either/or dichotomy between selfishness and altruism? Why can't it be a little bit of each?
In “The Wealth Of Nations'”, Scottish economist Adam Smith hypothesized that it was through the enlightened self-interest of numerous individuals making decisions on behalf of their own particular needs and desires that the great invisible hand was able to manifest the will of providence. This particularly brought about the distribution of a finite quantity of goods and services.
However, this theory can just as properly be applied to a Christian approach to the controversy surrounding the Christmas issue. In his call for abdication along this front in the culture war, Jared Byas believes that he I upholding the Biblical admonition to esteem others more highly than ourselves. And that principle does indeed have a place in adjudicating the relationship between specific individuals.
For example, if someone wishes you “Happy Holidays” rather than “Merry Christmas” and they seem sincere in their extension of the sentiment, there is no need to go “Old Testament” upon them calling down holier than thou condemnation in how you go out of your way to maintain the theological formalities of the holiday. Such stridency might do more harm than help in advancing the cause of Christ.
However, what about addressing the attempts of unbelievers demanding that their own animosity towards traditional expressions of religion be granted a place of privilege so militant that in order to be satisfied an entire civilization is expected to lay down in what amounts to ritualized suicide? Therefore, provided one goes about it in a levelheaded manner, each time that you speak out against a censorship or deprivation of Christmas even if as little as letting someone know how much these radical activists tick you off, you are not being selfish.
You are in fact defending the right of someone else to enjoy Christmas unabashed in compliance with their particular convictions. Even more importantly, you are also lighting a candle against a pending Dark Age bent on plunging the world into an engulfing and pervasive tyranny.
Dr. Frederick Meekins
Monday, December 21, 2015
Thursday, December 17, 2015
Wednesday, December 16, 2015
As an example, the pastor provided the illustration of a husband telling his wife to do one thing while the wife responds how she feels led by the Lord to go in another direction.
But provided that either alternative is equally godly, wouldn't a loving husband take into
consideration what the wife had to say and perhaps in many instances even defer to her suggestion?
So why wouldn't a pastor worthy of respect as such do similarly?
Rev. Cooley insists that, since such indolence would not be tolerated in the home, it should be just as quickly punished in the church.
Pastors insisting that they should be obeyed without question or hesitation like a parent in general and a father in particular need to be reminded of a fundamental assumption that cannot really be altered.
That is you have no say into what family you are born; however, an adult is perfectly free to up and leave any church in which they do not feel that they are being respected as a free human being.
This legalistic pastor admonished in this same homily posted at SermonAudio that one cannot have a foot in what would be considered a strict congregation in terms of the expectations imposed upon the members and the other foot outside in terms of refusing to relent to pastoral obedience.
So does Cooley intend to bestow a blessing upon those that depart such congregations to attend those that still adhere to essential Christian doctrine but which do not deem it necessary to clamp down so tightly regarding secondary matters?
Or will he hint at Hellfire in the attempt to frighten people from looking for more psychologically or methodologically balanced churches?
In this sermon, Pastor Cooley also criticized those that set out to establish churches on their own without proper authority.
By that, does that mean he intends to repent of being a schismatic and to return to the Roman Catholic Church?
By Frederick Meekins
Tuesday, December 15, 2015
Monday, December 14, 2015
Missouri Synod Lutheran Statement On Scouting As Condemnatory Of Non-Denominationalism As Homosexuality
Sunday, December 13, 2015
Friday, December 11, 2015
Thursday, December 10, 2015
As someone with formalized studies in history, philosophy, and political science, I would be fascinated by a film or two detailing how it became an acceptable notion to force children to fight to the death in gladiatorial combat.
Click On The Headline
Wednesday, December 09, 2015
Is it against everything that Americans that actually work for a living stand for or merely everything the prevailing globalists wanting to enslave humanity in a New World Order stand for?
Of course Cheney is opposed to any curtailment of immigration.
He needs access to a steady supply of cheap transplant organs.
As an advocate for an interventionist foreign policy, Dick Cheney justified that on the grounds of standing against belligerent Islam.
So why is it do we want those of that particular persuasion to be allowed the opportunity to overwhelm our borders in their mission to spread violence?
Dick Cheney wasn't the only public figure or media personality to get swept up in the anti-Trump frenzy.
One particular Yahoo headline approvingly intoned “Muslims decry Donald Trump's comments.”
Too bad the adherents of that particular errant theology aren't as eager to denounce the violence of their coreligionists.
According to J.K. Rowling, Voldemort (the antagonist in her Harry Potter Series) was nowhere near as bad as Donald Trump.
What she is saying is that outright murder (which Voldermort committed against Harry's parents as well as numerous other characters throughout the series in case Rowling has forgotten) is apparently not as bad as exercising one's First Amendment Rights in a politically incorrect manner.
Speaking to the issue on The Five on Fox News, Juan Williams articulated his agreement with Hillary Clinton that Donald Trump's suspicions of Muslims are reprehensible.
So will Juan Williams also now admit that National Public Radio was correct in condemning his own verbalized reservations about explicit Muslims?
Juan Williams remarked in response to Donald Trump's remarks that fearmongering and demagoguery sell.
What, sort of like the current occupant of the Oval Office, applauded along with Williams and throngs of brainwashed drones, for accomplishing little more than emerging from his mother's birth canal as half Black?
Trump's proposal to ban Muslim citizens from reentering the United States might go a step too far.
However, forbidding the entrance of residents of specific countries is not beyond the bounds of propriety.
The United States exists primarily for the benefit of those categorized as actual Americans.
We should be the ones to determine the criteria by which immigrants will be admitted and not the other way around with foreigners dictating these terms.
By Frederick Meekins
Pewfillers Keep Their Mouths Shut, Their Thoughts To Themselves & Coin Flowing Into The Collection Plate
Tuesday, December 08, 2015
In the attempt to play on Christian sympathies at Christmas time, the National Catholic Register has posted a story titled, “No Room At The Inn, Why So Few Syrian Refugees Come To America”.
Firstly, the only ones that can be blamed for that are those that formulate the admissions policy.
Most Americans aren't held in much higher esteem by the secret society elites that run the upper echelons of the State Department and related agencies than the refugees applying for entrance.
It is doubtful your State Department gives a hoot what you think.
If the agency had it's way, those that run the place would probably like nothing better than to implement Prince Philip's proposal of systematic depopulation in the most diplomatic way possible where you would end up thanking them for doing you a favor in terminating your existence.
Secondly, Roman authorities ordered the swarms of whom Mary and Joseph ranked to report to their ancestral lands.
The United States did not compel the dispossessed to flock here only to slam the door in their face.
There is not a constitutional obligation to let them in.
Thirdly, enough with badmouthing what transpired at the inn after all these centuries.
How do we not know that the beds there weren't filled by other pregnant women also on the verge of giving birth or perhaps even elderly in nearly as much agony as Mary might have been?
Even if Mary had made a fuss that she was carrying the Redeemer, without angelic intervention to verify, why ought she have necessarily been believed in the first place?
By Frederick Meekins
Hillary Insists Christian Pedagogues Obligated To Indoctrinate Students To Embrace Subjugation By Muslims
Monday, December 07, 2015
Apologetics exists as a field of Christian study to aide the believer in understanding his beliefs, why critics refuse to ascent to these eternal truths, and how these beliefs apply to broader intellectual concerns. Upon hearing of these applications of the discipline, those unfamiliar with such studies might conclude the field to be a subject preoccupied with trivial, esoteric arguments divorced from more pressing issues arising in the course of everyday life.
However, Apologetics does not have to confine itself to the halls of higher education. Apologetics does, in fact, have a role to play in the more popular forms of communication and cultural expression often looked down upon by more traditional academics and clergy.
Many students enrolled in formal degree programs and academic courses of Apologetics no doubt embrace aspirations of serving the Lord in the capacity of a pastor, missionary, or some other form of traditional Christian service. While these students are to be commended for such lofty goals, it must be noted that formalized education in Apologetics can also be good preparation for vocations involving more direct confrontation with the social and cultural realities of the day.
Such an assessment is not a detached observation. Rather it is one derived from my own experience of nearly two decades as a writer of editorial and op-ed commentaries. These efforts began in local newspapers but eventually migrated onto the Internet as that particular technology became more widespread and assessable.
One would not, at first glance, suspect a connection between Apologetics and scathing news analysis. However, Apologetics can serve as as useful tool to get at the ideas and assumptions concealed beneath the theatrics and hoopla surrounding most public issues.
Likewise, the Evangelical might be surprised by the receptivity of many of these public forums to the presentation of the Christian worldview since most believers have grown accustomed to a hostility towards traditional religious perspectives in the mainstream media. The point is not so much for the Christian to expect to anchor the nightly news on one of the major networks but to capitalize on those opportunities made available by new technologies contributing to the democratization of the means of mass communication.
The ability of the Christian to stake a foothold and win at least a modest audience in the tumultuous arena of public debate is predicated on the nature of truth itself. Romans 2:14 says, “Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, since they show that requirements of the law are written on their hearts...”
This reality serves as a gateway to an apologetic utilized by some of the most influential Christian thinkers. Dr. John Warwick Montgomery writes in “The Law Above The Law”, “...the fundamental function of the legal profession is to seek justice by seeking truth. The lawyer endeavors to reduce societal conflicts by arbitrating conflicting truth claims (68).” Similar things could be said of the journalist or columnist as these modern scribes chronicle the events of the day and attempt to relate them to the overall human condition.
Yet the Christian taking the insights of Apologetics into the public debate should not expect things to always go along peachy keen. After all, this is an age whose prevalent outlook of relativism stands in opposition to the absolute claims of the Christian faith. It, therefore, falls to the apologist to show the contemporary unbeliever, acculturated to the temper of these times, the disjunction that exists between what the average non-Christian publicly professes and the stable moral order the heart actually longs for whether the individual fully realizes it or not.
C.S. Lewis in “Mere Christianity” noted that when there is a disagreement between two individuals, “It looks, in fact, very much as if both parties had in mind some Law or Rule of...morality...Quarelling means trying to show that the other man is wrong. And there would be no sense in trying to do that unless (there was) some sort of agreement as to what Right and Wrong are (31-32).” If radical tolerance really was the ultimate principle around which the universe operated, argumentation would be pointless and perhaps impossible. Alister McGrath writes in “Intellectuals Don't Need God & Other Modern Myths”, “Lewis's point ... is that there is a core of moral constraints underlying human civilization (40).”
The Christian makes the argument for the superiority of his answer by comparing how well Christianity and the competing belief system in question measure up to various tests such as that of systematic consistency and coherence. By this test, the philosophical investigator examines how well the statements within a given worldview logically fit together and how these propositions square with the external facts. In the arena of public debate, this test is carried out by extrapolating from policies and ideas to their ultimate conclusions and how they either help or hinder both the individual and the nation.
For example, Winfred Corduan of Taylor University writes in “No Doubt About It: The Case For Christianity”, “Relativism plays the role of Zorro in the world of knowledge. It stays in concealment for long periods of time only to suddenly appear at crucial moments, conquer the day, and go back into hiding (37).” In other words, relativism might be good for tearing down dogmas, but there is no way an individual can live or a society govern by this perspective consistently. Because with no standard by which to cry “foul”, such an ethic naturally degenerates into the strong imposing their arbitrary will upon the weak.
Francis Schaeffer noted in “A Christian Manifesto”, “We live in...sociopolitical law. By sociopolitical law we mean law that has no fixed base but law in which a group of people decides what is sociologically good for society ...and what they arbitrarily decide becomes law (41).” So if society needs to kill a few million Jews or experiment on a few million fetuses, who is the average relativist to argue against these kinds of things when these atrocities are couched in the language of the “common good”? There might have been a time when Christians could have ignored the outside world with little peril; but as apologists such as C.S. Lewis, John Warwick Montgomery, and Francis Schaeffer have made know, that day is long gone if it ever existed at all.
Of the gains made by Christians in the discipline of Philosophy over the past several decades, J.P. Moreland says in “Evangelical Apologetics: Selected Essays From The 1995 Evangelical Theological Society Convention”, “In spite of these gains, however, it would be misleading to speak as if all were well on the battlefront. There is much work to be done...philosophical apologetics should be focused on those areas of study in which activity is underrepresented...Political and social philosophy would get my vote here (19-29).” This analysis has echoed this sentiment in calling for a Christian voice to address the pertinent issues of the day. This examination also embraces the spirit of Dr. Moreland's comments calling upon apologists not to ignore other forms of popular communication for the most part traditionally overlooked by Christian polemicists, primarily imaginative literature.
Bombarded with an unending twenty-four hour news cycle and conflicting streams of argumentation on nearly every conceivable issue, some overloaded minds simply turn off any alacrity they once had for the absorption of raw facts and refined logic. The desire to be entertained here in the twenty-first century shows few signs of letting up.
John Warwick Montgomery writes in “Neglected Apologetic Styles: The Juridical and The Literary” appearing in the same volume as J.P. Moreland's essay writes, “The...juggernaut of scientific technology has alienated many in our society...Might literary creativity offer a way through this labyrinth? Can literature succeed where other paths have failed (126)?” Unlike rational argumentation, which as to get around tenaciously held objections or what C.S. Lewis referred to as “watchful dragons”, stories have a way of infiltrating the defenses of the mind before one realizes what is happening (McGrath, 198).
The success of this approach is not predicated, however, upon literature for literature's sake. For although packaged in the regalia of high adventure, sympathetic characters and compelling settings, to literary sophisticates John Warwick Montgomery observes in “Myth, Allegory & Gospel”, “Chesterton, Lewis, Tolkien display...an infuriating combination or ingenuousness and genius. On the other hand, no 20th century writers in the English-speaking world have had such an ... extensive impact on the intelligentsia in the sphere of ultimate commitment (14).” Of Tolkien, Montgomery admits that some say of this fantasist that he “...limits his imagery to the symbols of Celtic and medieval myth and the verities of the Christian tradition that in the judgment of a recent critic ...'his earnest vision seems syncretistic, his structure a collage, and his feeling antiquarian.'. (14).” Yet “The Lord Of The Rings” has been heralded as the greatest novel of the twentieth century and the cinematic adaptations set in this imaginary realm are the box office hit of any Christmas season.
What these tales do is tap into a fund of themes, ideas, and images etched upon the human mind and soul. Lewis himself reflected upon the theories of Jung and Tolkien to account for the appeal of these timeless narratives. Jung believed that myths and fantasies verbalize symbols universal to the human psyche. Tolkien Christianized this idea when he said as quoted in “Myth, Allegory & Gospel”, “The Gospels contain...a story of a larger kind which embraces all of the essences of fairy stories (117).” John Warwick Montgomery further expounds, “To Tolkien and Lewis, tales such as “The Chronicles Of Narnia” can...serve as pointers to...Christian Redemption. Moreover, they will establish in the heart of the sensitive reader an appreciation of and a longing for the Christian story (118).” This technique works because, as Romans 1:20 informs, “For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities --- his eternal power and divine nature --- have been clearly seen so that men are without excuse (NIV).” Thus, each human being's inbuilt curiosity regarding God and eternal things pops up in regards to the stories of good and evil so prevalent in contemporary popular culture.
With such names as Lewis and Tolkien attached to it, the average Christian might feel unworthy of employing an apologetic having grown synonymous with classical literature for fear of not properly honoring it. However, even those unlikely of ever penning a timeless epoch for the ages can still use speculative narrative to stimulate the imagination in the direction of religious truth. In fact, one does not even have to adorn the tale in the traditional medieval fantasy motifs popularized by this format since the underlying concepts being presented are much more important than the external trappings and regalia.
Though it might seem a bit clichéd now in light of the popularity of Left Behind and the crop of other End Times novelizations that popped up at the turn of the millennium, in a creative writing class during college I wrote a short story incorporating certain elements of a literalist eschatology such as the Rapture, the Mark of the Beast and Christian Redemption and placed them in a literary setting incorporating elements of the techno-thriller and police-state genres. The story was surprisingly well-received by a state university audience. Some of the students were kind enough to rank it among the best in the class.
It has been said that those who can, do; those who cannot, teach. Likewise, in the literary world, those who can, write; those who cannot, criticize.
Among those Christians who enjoy imaginative adventures but lack the creativity to craft their own speculative worlds there is more than ample opportunity to relate the symbols found in these narratives to Biblical truths. Some might consider it bizarre to comb science fiction and fantasy for parallels in Christian thought. Silly as it seems, it is not without precedence among secular academics to examine this kind of material through the analytical lenses of their own respective disciplines.
Such efforts have given rise to a group of semi-popular works one might classify as “Star Trek Studies”. One such volume entitled “The Ethics Of Star Trek” by Judith Barad, head of the Department of Philosophy at Indiana State University, examines the moral dilemmas confronted by these beloved characters created by the late Gene Roddenberry. It would, therefore, be just as legitimate to probe and analyze programs such as “Babylon 5”, “Stargate”, “Battlestar Galatica”, and “Doctor Who” as a form of apologetic outreach to an overlooked segment of the population, namely science fiction enthusiasts. The Blackwell Philosophy & Pop Culture Series already does something similar from the standpoint of secular philosophy.
II Corinthians 10:3-4 says, “...we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses (NAS).” The Scripture acknowledges that the children of God are at war. In this conflict, it would not be strategically sound to have all the participants engaged in the same kind of combat. The army fights on the land, the navy on the sea. Still other agencies such as the CIA gather intelligence for the other branches and engage in other assorted activities not exactly fitting the mission profiles of the other services. Likewise, it is the mission of the apologist to gather information of the conditions outside of the Church and to relay that knowledge back to the body of Christ and to go into places where a pastor might not be accepted or appreciated.
By Frederick Meekins
Sunday, December 06, 2015
In a blog post at ChristianPost, it said that the most common reason a pastor leaves a church is because the pastor believes that they have taken a church as far as they can.
From the assorted scandals that erupt nearly constantly, I would have assumed it was because the pastor couldn't keep his hands off other men's wives or even underage minors.
But on a more serious note, why is it that a church has to necessarily “go anywhere”.
Isn't it enough that people show up each week, politely listen to the sermon, drop a few dollars into the collection plate, and wash and repeat the next week?
A pastor saying that they have to take a church as far as they can sounds like a pronouncement uttered from atop a dangerous precipice.
Primarily, it sounds like a pastor is willing to stomp all over a congregation in order to make a name for himself.
In such a situation as a member of the congregation or regular attender, if you don't go along with the pastor's outlandish schemes, you are made out to be some kind of dangerous subversive.
Slow and steady wins the race.
If you find yourself in a congregation where the church needs to “go somewhere”, you might very easily find yourself in the jungles of Latin America where the unsuspecting before they realize it are forced to line up to take the “spicy Kool Aid” whether they really want to or not.
Friday, December 04, 2015
Thursday, December 03, 2015
If the government targets public service announcements encouraging Native America youth to exercise more, aren't bureaucrats propagating the assumption that Indians are a bunch of lazy (probably drunken) fat asses?
The Department of Energy has issued a public lamentation regarding how decaying pumpkins likely contribute to climate change. It can be disturbing at times to see pumpkins go to waste. However, is it the place of a government that isn't exactly heralded for its own prudent use of resources to get up on a high horse regarding this issue? After all, you'd don't see a similar form of taxpayer supported environmental slut-shaming about piss so saturated with birth control that when released into the nation's waterways that these compounds are mutilating the genitals of certain kinds of fish.
How come decomposing pumpkins contribute to global warming according to the Department of Energy but President Obama's numerous airline trips to play golf on hydro-intensive courses seemingly do not?
A pastor insisted that God used September 11th to judge America because of the removal of prayer and Bible reading from public schools. But wasn't that the fault of a limited number of jurists that weren't even killed that tragic day rather than the scores of people whose occupations and professions had nothing whatsoever to do with educational jurisprudence and policy? Ministers making these kinds of claims would then turn around and drill the congregation a new one if it became known Christians weren't doing things because they were right but rather in the hopes of avoiding God smiting them in unbelievably horrifying ways.
Reflecting upon the irritation of Republican presidential candidates at the less than fawning debate moderators, Obama mused how the aspirants to the nation's highest elected office cannot handle these journalists, how are they going to handle the likes of Russia or China. As if he has done a stellar job in the arena of foreign policy.
Apart from the premiere episode, the pending Star Trek series will not be available through conventional television but rather through CBS's video subscription service. That stinks worse than a Klingon's armpit. I hope it is a bigger flop than the Star Wars Christmas special.
In a podcast rant against Halloween, the theme to the Halloween movie was played as bumper music. Isn't that the equivalent of playing Shania Twain's “Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under?” during a discussion on promiscuity or Conway Twitty's “Tight Fittin Jeans” during a discussion on dressing modestly?
In an anti-Halloween sermon, a pastor mentioned that he was a swimmer in college. If out religion is supposed to be wound so tight that a child is to be denied the opportunity to collect candy while in costume, couldn't it be argued that the immodest apparel worn in aquatic athletics has sparked more lustful thoughts than any Jack-O-Lantern ever has. Or is this like so many other activities harangued from the typical pulpit? They were perfectly acceptable when the pastor was wrong; but, now that the pastor is approaching codgerhood, by golly everybody else in the congregation had better be against it now as well.
A Yahoo headline laments half of Black youth know a victim of police violence. And how many of these were engaged in activity that deserved a forceful response? It's doubtful most were returning from vespers.
Does this mean that since an ISIS scumbag blew his lower extremities to smithereens that he will lack the equipment necessary to defile his 72 virgins?
Neil Cavuto has criticized the hype surrounding the new Star Wars movie. Admittedly, Fox News tends to be the default setting on my television. However, isn't Fox News itself guilty of hype at times? After all, just because it is the top of the hour, that does not qualify the first story to be present in the form of a breaking news alert as if the lives of thousands depended upon the information.
Former President George H.W. Bush in an official biography has come out in condemnation of former Vice President Dick Cheney's robust foreign policy. But wasn't Cheney the senior Bush's own Secretary of Defense? And wasn't it the first President Bush's own New World Order speech that established the conceptual parameters of intervening in situations destabilizing international institutions and threatening human rights.
If the Pentagon wants to stage patriotic spectacles during NFL events, why shouldn't they have to pay for the time like any other corporate sponsor? If it is a matter of patriotism, shouldn't weapons manufacturers be required to provide their hardware for free as well?
On Gretta Van Sustern, it was pointed out that the school where a student was given detention for giving another student a hug has a policy that forbids hugging, hand holding, arm locking, and kissing at all school functions (including dances). What is the point of dancing without at least minimal contact? At that point, isn't it no longer dancing but merely swaying?
On Fox Business, pundit Katherine Timpf remarked that no one likes passive aggressive men. It must be the active aggressives that can backhand and berate a woman into compliance that are adored by one and all.
Despite verbalizing all of the necessary catchphrases and battle cries, propagandists are insisting that a knife attack on a campus of the University of California had nothing whatsoever to do with Islamic terrorism. Just utter the “n-word” or a “homophobic” slur during an assault and see if they don't attach additional time onto your prison sentence.
Wonder how long until the incident where law enforcement justifiably terminated an Islamist assailant wielding a knife during a rampage at a campus of the University of California will be protested as an act of police violence.
Deviants at the University of Cambridge are insisting that it is natural and normal for men to be aroused by children. And this campus probably has a code of conduct that would nearly criminalize the same men for gawking at a 22 year old coed with shorts two sizes too small with “juicy” plastered across the backside and a skintight halter top.
Ben Carson has been accused of being less than transparent about his considered attendance at West Point. And how is that worse than that surrounding Obama's birth certificate?
Regarding the Ben Carson/West Point hullabaloo. ABC News disturbingly intoned that details regarding the overrated neurosurgeon's life didn't add up. Did this journalistic outlet become as outraged over details of Obama's own biography not adding up either?
Records regarding Ben Carson''d West Point application are really no less tangible that Obama's entire academic record.
President Obama justified the decision to scuttle the Keystone Pipeline on the grounds that this particular petrochemical conveyance was not in the national interest. And how is the United States better off with decreased access to natural resources and this fuel likely diverted to Red China?
Regarding Ben Carson's claims of almost matriculating at West Point. If every politician was barred from office over exaggerating their accomplishments, the term limit issue would pretty much resolve itself.
Athletes in academic settings that refuse to play until their political demands are met should lose their scholarships.
A U.S. Border Patrol internal review has recommended that body cameras were an unnecessary enforcement tool. Is that to cover over abuse of the migrants? Or perhaps even more importantly, is this to downplay how management has probably instructed frontline officers to let the apprehended go without sanction?
In a podcast discussion on Christian hospitality, it was admitted that part of the reason for opening up one's home to nosy gawkers is to let other people see what elements that you have within its walls representing your faith. So my “spidey sense” was correct that this effort is in part an intelligence gathering operation to snoop around the properties of gullible church members.. As to the “element in my house that represents my faith”, I have hanging a painting of Jesus that my grandparents actually purchased through Oliver Greene's ministry that they donated to their church. Given that no act of kindness goes unpunished, they agreed to take it back when the anti-religious art fanatics in the congregation pitched a hissy fit about it.
And the point of admonishing people to examine themselves to see if they number among the elect if the interpretation of the elect that you teach is so ramrod hard that people have no say in the matter?
It was said in a podcast on Christian hospitality that hospital hospitality could consist of preparing meals for those with loved ones in the hospital so they would not “have to eat out of bag.” Such people no doubt mean well. However, I rather eat prepackaged things I've put in a bag myself than someone else's slop even if it is homemade.
There is conjecture that a proponent of sanctuary cities might be selected to head the Border Patrol. Isn't that the equivalent of a child pornography being appointed to administer the sex offender registry?
If for no other reason, the University of Missouri president should have remained in office to see if that brat would have made good on the promise to starve himself to death.
The New York Times insists that Ted Cruz's father's past as a freedom fighter against the Castro regime has been exaggerated. Sort of like that of Obama's mother being a loving one that took good care of her son?
No wonder the financial sector is near collapse. According to an official at the bank, I have not yet recived my October bank statement that should have been dated at the the close of last month because tomorrow is a Federal Holiday.
Governor Jerry Brown of California vetoed legislation that would have allowed patients to try experimental medicine. Yet he is probably an advocate of legalized pot and hacky the unborn to pieces all in the name of bodily autonomy.
Why is the poo swastika any worse than the portrait of the Virgin Mary smeared in elephant dung or the cross submerged in urine which government functionaries lavished with grant funds?
It's fascinating how administrations that mistreat veterans the whole year through on Veterans Day propagandize as if that negligence is the fault of the average American rather than those running these agencies.
Regarding these demonstrators in Missouri badmouthing the First Amendment. Let's see if they are singing the same tune once the National Guard is sent in to whack a few skulls.
In a series of tweets, astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson went on a rant against the Second Amendment. Given that the scientist is an avowed secular humanist whose Cosmos propaganda insists that nothing ultimately matters anyway and there is ultimately no such thing as right or wrong, why should he get worked up over gun deaths in America? Secondly, now that scientists are apparently handing down policy pronouncements outside of their narrowly defined areas of expertise, does that mean similar pronouncements made by NRA lawyers and allied Creationists ought to be similarly binding upon the astronomical establishment?
Obama did not use the word "Islamist" once in connection to the attack on Paris. It must be a joint Amish/Franciscan assault. Americans need to stop and take notice. It seems terrorist attacks are coordinated with Obama's statements insisting what little threat these violent extremists actually pose.
If liberals here are constantly encouraging America to emulate the policies of European social democracies, not that France has closed its border shouldn't they be calling upon the United States to close its border as well? The attack on Paris was merely a dry run for ones on America.
With his own daughter on the scene of one of the terrorist attacks, wonder if Geraldo supports the policy of closed borders in France. Geraldo should be asked how are those murdered by the illegal aliens he coddles less dead than those murdered by the terrorists he wants wiped out.
From the pulpit, a pastor categorized his mother as spiritually immature for having a plaque hanging on her wall asking, “Is my name written in the Lamb's Book Of Life?” His response was that one should already know. However, how is that blessed assurance to arrived at unless the question is contemplated? Therefore, why is it not proper to deliberately raise such introspective reflection from time to time? Secondly, how do we know that this decoration is displayed for the benefit of the domicile's primary occupant rather than as a way to encourage apologetic or evangelistic dialog with guests happening to gave upon such a placard?
In a Tweet, ardent Christ-despiser Stephen King remarked, “Hating all Muslims for what happened in Paris is like hating all Christians because of the gay-hating Westboro Baptist Church.” On the surface, one can't fault the beloved author for what he posted. But when was the last time a narrative linked to Stephen King's imaginative mind featured a prominent Islamic antagonist? On the other hand, a significant percentage of his stories feature a villain depicting the dark undersides and shortcomings of characters professing Christianity.
A Yahoo headline reported that Muslims are facing harassment and threats following the terrorist attack in Paris. That is indeed lamentable. However, these people are still being treated better than those blown to pieces, particularly those in wheel chairs that were singled out for execution.
In an interview, Jorge Ramos insisted that Donald Trump's “words are dangerous and his ideas extreme.” But aren't those of Ramos even more so if a sovereign nation ought to be denied the power to determine when the conditional privilege of enter may be extended and when deleterious foreign elements need to be expelled? In reflection of his expulsion from the press conference, this propagandist compared this treatment to that endured by dissidents in Marxist dictatorships such as Cuba or Venezuela. Did the tolerancemongers pounce all over these remarks in criticism the way that they do whenever a conservative analyst or commentator likens a particular government action or policy to something that transpired under the auspices of other historically infamous tyrannies?
An article in the 9/7/15 issue of Businessweek was titled “You're Invited To A Finnish Tea Party Unless You Are Gay, Muslim, Or Greek.” Do the organizations and rallies catering to non-straight, non-Christian, or Mediterranean Europeans embrace the Finns? And why ought likely more productive Scandinavians pick up the tab for deadbeat demographics that barely pull their weight or expect entire nations to bend to their religious psychosis. Will this publication feigning so much concern for inclusivism get as jacked out of shape over the arising breed of Afrosupremacist activists that militantly refuse to be in the company in the name of requiring a “healing space”?
“An honest conversation about race” is euphemism for verbally berating and abusing Whitey.
If Toys For Tots tykes were so needy, wouldn't they be glad to get a quality used toy as in decades past?
An Inc. article suggests that scuffed shoes create a bad impression. Scrutinizing an individual to that degree reminds of a joke my grandparents thought humorous. During an examination, the doctor looked down the patient's throat. Following the procedure, the patient asked if the doctor was going to look up the opposite end. The doctor asked what for. The patient replied to see if his hat was on straight.
Ben Carson's proposal of the government having a database of all immigrants is more acceptable than Donald Trump's that there be one composed of Muslims. For if there is one dedicated to identifying Muslims, what is to prevent one from being compiled listing Christians holding to the soteriological exclusivity of their professed faith or that believe valid marriage is only between a man and a woman? Regarding Carson's proposal, to be here legitimately, immigrants are supposed to possess the proper paperwork to begin with. So what is so out of line with the government keeping systematized tabs on such information? How is this appreciably worse than legitimate citizens being saddled with a Social Security number nearly as soon as they slide out of the birth canal?
Given the European alacrity for comprehensive regulation and control, what is to prevent the lockdown in Brussels from becoming permanent? It has been a decade and a half since 9/11 and some things here are still closed in the name of national security. Will one of the things eventually forbidden be asking why a particular thing is being forbidden?
In an epistle, Jim Bob Duggar insists that all sensual content must be removed from the home. Would that include his television program as well? For in one episode where the parents took one of the offspring on a chaperoned courtship encounter (only whores dates), there is footage of Jim Bob trying to hump Michelle through the back door, or as it's also called, doggie style.
A Facebook posting of Ligonier Ministries' Tabletalk Magazine admonishes “If we feel lowly as believers, we should not fight this sense. We are the people made glad by news of our weakness.” But the question must be asked for the sake of protection “To what extent?” For couldn't this state of awareness be indoctrinated so that no one will think they are worthy of questioning those running a congregation or ministry organization living like fat cats while fostering deprivation and even abuse among those from whom those in power derive benefit? There is also a point where what one perceives as a sense of humility can warp back on itself and can prevent the individual from enjoying the good things God provides in this world and using these things in the pursuit of accomplishment. Apparently the author of that Tabletalk remark thought himself not only good enough for his own reflections to be pondered by others but to also attach his byline to them.
Of an American aide worker killed in the terrorist attack on a hotel in Mali, it was said that her son was her highest priority. If that was true, wouldn't she have been at home with him rather than questing for adventure around the globe in the name of humanitarianism? At best, isn't that poor child merely a distant second?
Joyce Carol Oates is upset little positive is being said regarding ISIS. Isn't this hag the one that also condemned Stephen Spielberg for posing with what she assumed was a dinosaur killed by the director?
President Obama insists that the most powerful tool in combating ISIS is courage. Does he intend to set this example by abolishing the Secret Service and demolishing the perimeter around the White House?
Regarding DC Police Chief Cathy Lennier's suggestion that citizens now take out terrorists in active shooter situations, how does she propose we accomplish this act of heroism when this very same jurisdiction interferes in the legitimate utilization of Second Amendment rights?
It's revealing as to what side the global elites are really on when Facebook takes down the page for a White Student Union but probably leaves jihadist profiles and pages untouched until the pork chops come home.
Apparently the deranged liberal mind is more concerned about Donald Trump's precise tabulations as to how many Mulsims he actually witnessed celebrating the 9/11 tragedy rather than that someone somewhere perceived these attacks as laudatory. Any other time a single racially insensitive remark ought to be enough to ruin entire careers or pillaging entire communities to the ground.
So with which directive are we expected to comply? The same government elites berating and shaming the population over global warming into taking public transportation have now issued a worldwide terrorist alert suggesting that we avoid public transportation and large crowds.
If you don't want to be shot by police, shouldn't you drop a knife when so instructed by law enforcement?
So is Ron Paul as condemnatory of Russian interventionism (given that they are often his benefactors) as he is of America's? Putin is no doubt giddy that the fighter jet was shot down.
As a form of psychological warfare against the American people, Obama operatives are suggesting that administration policy priorities be raised as part of Thanksgiving dinner conversation. They must figure that if they cannot get you to pray directly in Obama's name they are at least going to verbally beat you over the head with this particular ideology's version of an evangelist. Obama will certainly be discussed at some point around the table. It's just that if my remarks regarding such were broadcast over television, a significant percentage of those off the cuff before editing would be bleeped.
It was suggested in the nation's capital that a citizenry armed with firearms would not be necessary to repulse terrorist assailants. Instead baseball bats would prove to be an acceptable deterrent. And when police see you walking regularly down the street with a baseball bat and its obvious you aren't going to recreation, you will probably get charged with harboring “burglary tools”.
Small Business Saturday urges consumers to shop where you love. And what if those are the large retailers?
That's an actual dog show following the Macy's parade, not Michelle Obama's Thanksgiving Oration. Just clarifying in case you found it difficult to tell the difference.
To be consistent, shouldn't the Today Show propagandists covering the parade be condemning today's weather as a symptom of global warming instead of celebrating the fact they aren't freezing their backsides off in New York?
The Today Show broadcast one segment suggesting how we shouldn't eat mashed potatoes and gravy for Thanksgiving and then two segments later broadcast a segment on how to improve the taste of mashed potatoes and gravy. But won't that get people to eat more mashed potatoes which we aren't supposed to do? How many mashed potatoes did Al Roker scarf down before having his gastrointestinal tract mutilated.
Regarding the musical The Wiz, shouldn't that be condemned as the cultural misappropriation of the original Wizard of Oz?
Matt Lauer described “The Wiz” as the Wizard of Oz in an African-American context. So does that mean that instead of Dorothy trying to reach the Wizard in the Emerald City to get home, it is about Dorquesha trying to get to the administrator in the social services office to file a complaint about her dead beat “baby's daddy's” failure to pay child support?
A McDonald's advertisement suggests that it's time to start breaking some rules. Does that mean they will no longer verbally ream you a new one if you present more than one coupon per transaction?
At the parade, one group is billed as being as “all female depicting life in India.” So does that include a dance symbolizing them be sold into forced prostitution or left on a trashpile to die?
Al Roker ought to start a Black Lives Matter style protest objecting to the fact that every year he's the one that has to march on foot to the broadcast booth and not Matt Lauer.
One group in the parade was named “The Sino-American Friendship Association.” That translates into normal English as Red Chinese front group.
Latin Grammy Nominee translates as still not quite good enough for a real Grammy.
If you don't procure your Elf on the Shelf from an officially sanctioned adoption center, is that the same as buying a child on the black market?
These health insurance companies pushing annual checkups and wellness visits aren't doing so for your benefit. You are being probed for reasons to either drop your coverage or levy a hefty fine against you for medical noncompliance.
Three tragically murdered in shootout in the vicinity of a Planned Parenthood. That's still fewer than the number slaughtered by the average Planned Parenthood butcher.
By Frederick Meekins
Wednesday, December 02, 2015
Tuesday, December 01, 2015
At a low point in his life at the age of 58, he found himself in a Michigan sanitarium.
Here he cried out, “Lord, I can do nothing. Will you take care of me?”
Of that petition, the testimony reads, “God answered Penney's prayer for salvation and restored his health and wealth.”
Praise be to God.
However, the part about health and wealth raises a number of questions.
How is emphasizing that much different than the Osteenism that Independent Fundamental Baptists rightly preach against?
But what of those that God does not return to health and material prosperity?
Are not “no”, “later”, or “in a manner different from the way you asked” also answers to prayer?
If such souls do not receive restitution on this plane of existence, are we to conclude that the prayer requesting such was not sincere?
And what about when Penney croaked at 95?
Should that be taken that his prayer was not focused or directed, to use the faddish terminology we are hearing enunciated even in churches that go out of their way to assure how much they avoid prevailing theological innovations?
It can be uplifting to hear stories of those that find themselves in destitute or despondent circumstances that God elevates in this life to a level higher that from which the individual initially fell.
However, there also needs to be encouragement for those that sincerely seek God but who for whatever reason are for now denied the healing for which they ask.
By Frederick Meekins