March 26, 2005

Prolonging life vs. Prolonging the act of dying (revised)

So, Terri Schiavo is dead; killed due to "diminished brain
capacity." By that reasoning, some would contend that about half the members of congress should be killed.

While I do believe there is Biblical warrant for a right to die, there is no
warrant for a right to be put to death. The difference?

Former Surgeon General of the United States, C. Everett Koop, said that
you have to distinguish between prolonging life versus prolonging the act of
dying. With just food and water, Ms. Schiavo could have lived for years--that is
called prolonging life.

My grandfather on the other hand, at 84, was in the hospital with
congestive heart failure. It wasn't the first time. He was spiritually ready, he
was prepared to die, and with congestive heart it means the muscle is just old
and worn out. Stripping away the euphemisms, he was dying. So when I was
asked if a code order should be placed on his chart, I said of course not. That would have been prolonging the act of dying.

That is a far cry from facilitating his death as was the case with Ms. Schiavo.

So for all the hand wringing going on pretending like this is such a hard
case; I tell you while there are hard cases that arise, this is not one of
them! That we killed this woman is an indictment on our nation. This does not bode well for our future.

March 19, 2005

The Truth of Palm Sunday

Yesterday we observed the week before Resurrection Sunday traditionally called Palm Sunday. What I would find interesting and tell tale is what message your pastor brought you concerning this monumental week in the life of Christ. It has been traditionally called Jesus’ Triumphal Entry in to Jerusalem but if you just read the few chapters before and after this historical day it’s pretty clear it was really anything but a triumphal entry.

Let me explain: Jesus is coming off the peak of his popularity having just fed the multitudes miraculously, working various miracles climaxed with Lazarus being brought back from the dead. In other words, Jesus was performing as Savior, the way the masses envisioned. Here in living color was the answer to all their worldly woes, troubles, health issues and heartbreaks. Shoot; who wouldn’t follow someone like that? He was better than a magic genie who would say, “Your wish is my command.”

But read the account again! Luke 19:41ff
“And when He approached, He saw the city and wept over it, saying, "If you had known in this day, even you, the things which make for peace! But… you did not recognize the time of your visitation."

Jesus crests the hill, lays his eyes on the City of Peace and weeps. Where’s the triumph in this triumphal entry? Jesus wept because he knew the only reason the vast majority of people were hailing him as king was not because of who He was but because of what He could do for them! And when it would become apparent that He didn’t come to solve all their life dilemmas and disappointments, they would not only reject him en masse but they would cry for his head.

And so Christian I ask you; why are you a Christian? Have you given your life to the sovereign Lord who demands undivided allegiance and obedience or do you merely do obeisance to a lucky rabbit’s foot Savior throwing him bone now and again to keep him on your good side?

Think about it this holy week and be ready for Resurrection Sunday!

The Passion of the Christ

This evening at our church we will be showing Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ” in it’s original uncut, R-rated, horror. There has been much controversy surrounding this film for many reasons but on this Good Friday, I want to say just this.

Jesus came to take upon Himself the due penalty of sin of everyone who puts their trust in Him. The prophet Isaiah wrote, “Many were amazed when they saw him—beaten and bloodied so disfigured one would scarcely know he was a person.” Isa 52:14

He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
He was despised and rejected by men,
a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering.
Like one from whom men hide their faces
he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

Surely he took up our infirmities
and carried our sorrows,
yet we considered him stricken by God,
smitten by him, and afflicted.
But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was upon him,
and by his wounds we are healed.
We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to his own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.

So if you somehow think that Hollywood’s depiction of the suffering of Christ, with all its graphic innovation and creative imagination is over done, it only underscores one thing. You understand neither God’s holiness nor your sinfulness.

And if you don’t understand those two things, I don’t see how you can possibly appreciate what you have been saved from. Maybe that explains the dismal state of church growth, church health, and church holiness.

So tonight, there will be one showing only at 6:30; children under 18 will not be admitted without an adult or written permission. As always, admission is free but by all means bring someone who doesn’t yet believe.

Hail Mary--It's not a footbal play

Flipping through the channels the other night I paused on the Catholic channel where Sister Angelica, the elderly, sweet faced, soft voiced nun you can see other times of the broadcast day giving various teachings on sundry catholic matters. She was reciting what is called the “Hail Mary” with the rest of the sisters parroting it back endlessly repeating it over and over and over again. Hearts in the right place, I thought, but so misdirected. How clear does Jesus need to be when he says, “"And when you are praying, do not use meaningless repetition, as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words.” Matthew 6:7

The prayer says, "Hail (Mary) full of grace, the Lord is with thee, blessed art thou amongst women.” "and blessed is the fruit of thy womb (Jesus)" "Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen."

According to the Catholic Encyclopedia the prayer is an “invocation of the most holy Mother of God, thereby implying that we should piously and suppliantly have recourse to her in order that by her intercession she may reconcile God with us sinners and obtain for us the blessing we need both for this present life and for the life which has no end."

Did you follow that? Mary is believed to intercede on our behalf so that we might be reconciled to God to obtain the blessing we need both in this life and the life to come.

With all due to respect, this is a serious problem. Because Jesus alone is our mediator “For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, per 1 Tim. 2:5 and Jesus alone “is able to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.” says Hebrews 7:25.

This holy week, remember “Jesus paid it all, all to whom I owe, sin had left a crimson stain; He washed it white as snow.”

March 11, 2005

Hypocrisy 101 at University of Colorado

Okay, if you are a sensible person with any sense of justice, fair play or honesty this piece should make your blood boil even if you don’t agree with the specifics.

Before I go further, take a dose of ant-acid; trust me on this…

Professor Phil Mitchell is a dedicated teacher, who taught for 24 straight semesters at the Hallet Diversity Program. He is employed by the University of Colorado. He was told his contract would not be renewed because "his teaching was not up to the department standards." Mitchell won the prestigious SOAR Award in 1998 for teacher of the Year.

Now let me tell you Mitchell is a Bible believing Christian and let me tell you his egregious offenses. He took exception to an opinion expressed by black intellectual Thomas Sowell--and of course was branded a racist. Now let me tell you that Mitchell, who has nine children, two adopted, said, I think my two black children would disagree with you.”

And let me tell you that he also used a book in his history class which contained the dreaded word GOD in it and was fired. Although he was later reinstated, he was banned from teaching in the history department.

Now let me tell you this is the same University of Colorado, which still has the perverse, hateful, anti-American, anti-Jewish nasty professor who called the people in the World Trade Centers “Little Eichmans” and they all deserved what they got. Yes, the same school that still employs Ward Churchill has essentially fired Phil Mitchell.

And some wonder why there is such acrimony among political forces and ideologues today? It is precisely because of the blatant, hypocrisy of godless liberals who are not only godless but have lost the ability to even maintain a consistent thought. There is no integrity, no honesty in their fabric. They are morally bankrupt and even common sense does not even show up as a vestige of days gone by.

Jesus said, "Woe to the world because of its stumbling blocks! For it is inevitable that stumbling blocks come; but woe to that man through whom the stumbling block comes!”

He also said, In the world you will have tribulation, but take courage, “I have overcome the world.”

Schumer's pro-abortion politics shot down

Charles Schumer has been messing up a well-intended bankruptcy bill for years. Schumer, a Democrat from New York has been trying to put pro-life protesters who are fined by activist judges in the same category as financial dead beats who simply want to scam the system by declaring bankruptcy at whim.

At issue is a bill Senate Republicans are pushing for which would bring about the greatest bankruptcy reform in decades. It would prevent irresponsible or dishonest people from skipping out of their financial obligations by declaring bankruptcy which is way too easy these days. That’s a real good idea. But Schumer, a typical liberal with low ideals, has wanted to make the same law apply to peaceful pro-life protesters who have been fined into oblivion by abortion loving judges.

But Schumer’s bill was defeated last week clearing the way for the Republican, good sense bill to make it through the Senate. See, if you ever wondered how much it mattered if you voted; see it does!

But here is what makes me seethe with liberals who have no integrity. Schumer, in his bombast, incessantly referred to violent anti-abortion protesters who need to be fined and shouldn’t be allowed to escape with such an easy way out.

Well, Schumer is a dishonest idiot who is merely an advocate for killing babies. And after all, someone who doesn’t have a problem with killing babies surely wouldn’t hesitate at a little lying now and again would they?

But I was one of those so-called violent protesters Schumer wants to hammer. And what did my violence look like? Kneeling or laying on the pavement, praying in quiet. When arrested, there was not a word uttered, nor a hand raised. That’s what Schumer calls violence. When you think of what happens in one of those abortion mills and you hear Schumer decrying the peaceful protest of Americans merely trying to save babies, you have to wonder what genetic fiber liberals are made from. But, happy days, thanks to conservatives with a conscience, having the majority, Schumer’s bill is dead.
Remember that the next time you think voting doesn’t do any good.


Well here’s something you’ll never hear on the regular, secular media; a retraction and an admission that I got it wrong!
Let me refresh your memory; a few weeks back a New Jersey family was savagely murdered. Hossam Armanious, his wife, and two children were found bound and gagged with their throats slit.
Investigators said there was nothing to point them to a religiously motivated attack on this Christian family who were very aggressive in their evangelism of Muslims. Additionally, a local Imam also declared the family’s blood “Halal” meaning anyone who shed their blood would receive special favor from Allah. This same Imam even named a suspect who fled the country. In light of it, Hudson County Prosecutor Edward DeFazio was accused of being politically correct not wanting to rile members of the Muslim community.
I asked in a previous commentary why this was being left in the hands of local yokels and not turned over to the feds in light of homeland security concerns and joined the cacophony of critics excoriating the authorities for shirking their duties to protect and serve rather than risk offending.
I was WRONG! As it turns out the police—those local yokels arrested two men whose motivation looked pretty convincingly that they were robbing the Armanious’ home and the plan went awry. Since the family had seen the men they had to be killed.
Certainly a tragedy but a bit of relief to those Christians who have converted from Islam that there isn’t some homegrown hit squad out there ready to execute Sharia law and murder anyone who converts from Islam.
I’m sorry I got it wrong. Jesus said in John 7:24; "Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment." While I feel bad about the misstep, I am certain it won’t be the last time. In what I do, one has to make judgment calls with the best information one has be it ever so incomplete. Thankfully, God does not judge so haphazardly. And when He does, it is with mercy and grace. Thank you our Father who art in heaven.

March 03, 2005

More Inconsistent Liberal "Thinking"

I need to say more about the horrendous ruling by our United States Supreme Court which allowed the Missouri Supreme Court to vacate the Supreme’s previous ruling.
One thing you can always depend on with liberals whose moral and intellectual powers of reason are grounded in nothing but passing fancy, are that they routinely destroy their own ideologies whenever they try using their brains.

It was determined that the sentence against a 17 year old who was convicted of murder and sentenced to death should be overturned as cruel and unusual punishment. Watch out now because here comes their convoluted reasoning.

Leonard Rubenstein, of Physicians for Human Rights said, "It provides a legal grounding for what scientists have shown: that kids are different from adults. Brains of young people are underdeveloped, particularly in the areas that dictate reason, impulse control and decision-making."

Indeed, liberal Justice Kennedy submitted research to the court about the differences between adolescent and adult minds. Young people "lack maturity," are "more vulnerable or susceptible to negative influences" and have characters that are "not as well formed as that of an adult," wrote Kennedy.

Now here’s what gets my dander up. Compare these remarks with what we hear all the rest of the time in our society about shunning terms like “boys” and “girls” for students in high school calling them “young men and young women.” And then we hear, until I’m ready to puke, about how mature they are which is why they are quite capable of making decisions about what they watch and listen to and about sex and condoms and birth control and why “girls” as young as 12 should have the right to make decisions about abortion and for parents to keep their noses out of it.
So I am baffled; what changed? How come one-minute teens are ready for the weightiest decisions of life but another are incompetent, infantile, immature, blithering idiots?

The answer, because when you’re a liberal determining right and wrong by sticking your finger in the air, it all makes perfect sense even when it’s all nonsense.
It makes me nuts; and it’s ruining our children, our cities, and our nation.
“For the wisdom of this world is foolishness before God. For it is written, "He is the one who catches the wise in their craftiness." (1 Corinthians 3:19) Paul might as well have been writing to us. Liberal, consider yourself busted.

Hunter Thompson Is Dead

Hunter S. Thompson is dead. Now I’m a fairly well read individual and I couldn’t have told you who he was. He apparently invented what is called Gonzo journalism which a web site defines as “a highly subjective and extremely personal form of reporting.”

Okay, call me cynical but what’s the difference between that and the reporting done by essentially all the network news anchors? Sounds to me like their all Gonzo journalists but I’ll stick with Thompson. Perusing a short biographical sketch I would have to say his life was one big mess. I guess that kind of explains why he is being extolled as some great individual. But what I want to highlight is the pathetic way his pathetic life ended.

He had been talking about ending his life for sometime wanting to “go out on top of his game.” That shows you where this guy’s head was. If he thinks he was at the top of his game, it shows you what the rest of his life was like.

So he phones his wife at her health club and asks her to come home but never says goodbye; he just lays down the receiver and then splatters his brains around the room; a special little remembrance for his grandson, son and daughter-in-law all of whom were in the house at the time.

Pardon me for sounding a bit calloused but suicide is the epitome of self-centeredness. Did you ever think about it? The only one in view of the one contemplating it is ME, ME, and more of ME. And look at the wonderful legacy this man left his wife, who had no idea she was coming home to a scene out of a horror movie, and his son, daughter-in-law and grandson who said they thought a book fell off a shelf. Surprise!

Suicide is a tragedy to be sure, and the loss of such a life is yet another victory for the evil one. Sure Jesus came to save the likes of Hunter Thompson but Thompson didn’t want any of it and as horrible as it may sound, from what I have heard and read, the world is better off without him.

May others learn from his empty life of despair and look to the Author of life before they are consumed with a self-absorbed delusion that something wonderful waits on the other side. Apart from Christ—there isn’t.

State Court Successfully Tramples Supreme Court Ruling

Okay just when it seems that our highest court in the land cannot get too much further a field of America’s system of jurisprudence, it does precisely that.

The current situation is a bit confusing. A Missouri juvenile was convicted of a brutal murder when he was 17 years of age and sentenced to death. The man’s lawyers won his appeal against the death sentence with the Missouri State Supreme Court unilaterally vacating the previous ruling of the highest court in the land which had already established that the execution of a juvenile does not violate the 8th amendment. So here is what is extremely troubling.

A state supreme court trampled a ruling already standing by the highest court in the land. The U.S. Supreme Ct. should have rebuked the state court asserting their own precedent. Instead, the highest court in the land allowed this minor court to vacate their ruling.

But on what basis? The 8th amendment hasn’t changed so what has? The answer? According to Stephen Breyer world sentiment. That’s right Justice Breyer said the U.S. is out of step with the rest of the world so on that basis the Supreme Court ruled against themselves—not according to sound jurisprudence but according to international opinion.

This is outrageous! No longer is American law the rule of our judicial system but international law.

Steve Chapman writing for the Chicago Tribune unwittingly clarifies the issue at hand. He wrote, “Justices had no choice but to weigh in on the juvenile death penalty, simply because there wasn't a national consensus. What changed, in the court's opinion, were the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society. Today, it sees a new national consensus against such executions."

Wait a minute, since when is our system of law based on a raising of hands at any given time allowing the changing fancy of the masses or unelected individuals to establish or disintegrate specific laws at whim. If a law is to be changed, we have a legislative process which has been followed for over 200 hundred years yet all of that is discarded by activist judges who, in the view of Justice Scalia, are choosing their own personal views on issues rather than following case law.

This is judicial tyranny plain and simple. The epitaph our nation was penned centuries ago in the book of Judges. “There was no king in Israel, and every man did what was right in his own eyes.” God save the United States.