September 2004 Blog Archives
Thursday, September 30
This just in:
Thought you would be interested in this article. John
Eisenhower is not voting for Michael Peroutka, but he
is also not voting for George W. Bush. I think he
articulates his reasons in a concise, well-thought out
manner. Take care and I continue to enjoy your
outstanding website and I continue to spread the word
about Michael Peroutka and Chuck Baldwin.
is referring to
this article by the son of former president Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Thanks for sending this to me, Charles.
Farm Update: The horses seem to love their new pasture. Yesterday they
spent most of their time frolicking and checking out every nook and
cranny, though they seemed hesitant to enter the woods. They stood
bug-eyed at the goats and cows grazing in the next pasture but were as
eager as always to eat their daily oats. We'll need to watch for any signs
of colic in the next few days, but so far all seems well. What a joy to
watch them from our dining room window each mealtime!
If you live near Laurel Hill, Virginia, you might consider attending the
Civil War reenactment this weekend. The Candlelight Tour is
phenomenal, and there are mock battles daily. If you can make it, please
look for the 30th North Carolina Troops and give Pvt. Black a holler.
Iraq Update: Look who's taking on
Bush's foreign policy follies now. (Hat tip: Charles Porter.)
Take a moment and read
excellent post on the American Revolution at Buried Treasure, then go
essay for more support.
And Bush charges Kerry with
Now there's even a newscam to watch
Helen blow her stack
Gregg Harris has some great thoughts on the impact of
opening our homes to strangers:
The potential for this
strategy goes far beyond mere academics. What do you think would happen
if more of us began to host missionaries in our homes? Our children
might catch a vision for serving God in nations around the globe. Host
an evangelist, and watch a passion for souls take root in your hearts.
Host an author, and notice how your teens begin to dream of writing
their first article or book. It is all the power of companionship
working through hospitality.
Some conference organizers have asked me why I
request to stay in the home of a family when I travel and speak for
their state homeschool conferences. Why not just stay in a nice hotel?
The reason is because by staying in homes I get to meet a lot of
homeschooled adolescents and teens who, to be candid, are often in
various stages of boredom with their homeschooling. I like to change
Catholic World News proffers a take on John Kerry's "church":
Carroll, the former Catholic priest who is employed by the Boston
Globe to write regular op-ed columns bashing the Catholic Church,
has changed his target slightly. Now the "bad guys" are the Republicans
who dare to question Kerry's commitment to the Catholic faith.
instructs his readers
that Kerry is free to dispute Church teachings on every crucial moral
issue in the political realm, because Catholics are free to embrace the
truth wherever they find it (except perhaps in the Republican platform).
Regarding sexual issues, Carroll continues, the Vatican doesn't
understand that "it is clear that the human race is undergoing a massive
cultural mutation..." (I'm not making this up. I couldn't.)
personal testimony here, too. Carroll reveals: "I worship at the same
Catholic church in Boston where John Kerry and his wife often attend
You're in the same church, all right. I wonder what church it is.
Pieter's latest artwork. You ought to be working for the campaign, young
Not your typical
PBS's story on third party candidates (which ran last night) is discussed
by the show's
As I don't watch TV I missed the program, but someone wrote me to say he
saw me on the show. Hope that won't keep any of you from voting for
Peroutka and Baldwin in November....
warning is a real doozy.
Blather bloggers get their moment of
This story was all the rage on the BBC yesterday - how Jack Straw, U.K. Foreign
Secretary and rabid anti-Mugabe figure, gets suckered into an embarrassing
handshake. The power of a gesture....
A fine read on our
[T]his idea that if the
United States withdrew, these terrorists would suddenly leave Iraq and
start attacking the United States and other countries is specious. This
is simply a retread of the rationalization used during the Vietnam War
that "if we don't fight them over there, we'll have to fight them here."
Despite the U.S. withdrawal and the Communist victory nearly 30 years
ago, the Vietnamese have yet to attack the United States. The Vietnamese
stopped killing Americans when American forces got out of Vietnam. One
can similarly assume that the Iraqis will stop killing Americans when
American forces get out of Iraq.
The politics of warfare functioning
at the expense of truth.
Wednesday, September 29
The following is taken from the church covenant written by Elder (not
"Pastor") Shubael Sterns in 1754 at the founding of Grassy Creek Baptist
Church, the mother church of my current congregation in Virginia. I was
delighted when I first saw it. I'm sure you'll notice (and I hope you'll
appreciate) the emphasis on the doctrines of grace:
Holding believers' baptism;
the laying on of hands; particular election of grace by the predestination
of God in Christ; effectual calling by the Holy Ghost; free justification
through God's grace and truth; the final perseverance, or continuance of
the saints in grace; the resurrection of these goodies [sic] after death,
at that day which God has appointed to judge thee quick and the dead by
Jesus Christ, by the power of God, and by the resurrection of Christ; and
life everlasting. Amen.
Great day in the morning! Our steeds have
finally made the trek from the Old North State to the land of Washington,
Jefferson, Madison, and (now) the Black clan. The general's horses are now
safely ensconced in their new pasture at Bradford Hall enjoying the
orchard grass and getting to know their new surroundings. Many thanks to
good friend Tommy Newcomb for his help in trailering. Hmm, is a ride in
the making this afternoon before Bible study? Only your editor knows for
Blogs for Peroutka,
courtesy of Pieter Friedrich.
Yesterday I received this wonderful response to my essay on being a
I like the part about using
the mind. I really love the old Puritan
preachers and writer. They were intelligent and EDUCATED! Much more so
than our generation. As for that matter, people from the earlier
centuries or even into the early part of the 1900's were much more
literate than this generation. And of course, we know why. Gubbermint
I love your website and check it every morning first thing when I get
home from work. AND I'm voting for Peroutka. And I've gone through many,
many arguments about "wasting my vote." Fie on them all. At least my
conscience will be clear, eh?
God bless you.
Baker Book House has been a great partner with me the last two decades in
publishing five or six of my textbooks, and yesterday I received word that
Rethinking New Testament
Criticism is being released in India in what Baker is calling an
English-language Indian edition for distribution in Bangladesh, Sri Lanka,
Oman, Bahrain, Qatar, the UAE, and Nepal (of all places!). That anyone in
these countries should be "rethinking" let alone thinking about the
subject of that book amazes (and pleases) me. I hope the book can be
useful among the Christian populations in these foreign lands.
A pleasant good morning to you, DBO readers. I had a wonderful day
yesterday at the seminary getting caught up on various and sundry projects
that are easier to do there than at the farm. I especially enjoyed seeing
so many of my colleagues and meeting Chris, a new student from Colorado
who has made quite a sacrifice to be with us. May the Lord richly bless
your time at Southeastern, dear brother!
Tuesday, September 28
One response to Carmon Friedrich's latest blog entry:
It was a shock to come back after being
gone from the States for a while and see the worship of Bush and the
Republican party. Lord, help us to think Biblically.
Boat, Baby. You won't be disappointed.
Charley Reese has a lot of common wisdom; I especially resonate with this
statement in his
Bush has no real
compassion. That's why he forbids ceremonies for returning dead.
According to Ollie North, President Reagan was at the airport every time
a dead American serviceman's body came home. The British also formally
greet their returning dead with honor and respect. Only in the United
States does the government even forbid news organizations from greeting
salute, Mr. President, would go a long to assuage the grief of those who
lost a loved one overseas.
Yesterday my son stumbled across an old Haven of Rest Quartet cassette
tape that we've been listening to non-stop. The organist, Dean McNichols,
was our church organist in California and has such a gentle touch on that
magnificent instrument. But I especially appreciate the simple harmonies
of the quartet as they sing such favorites as "Dear Lord and Father of
Mankind" and "Learning to Lean." O that I could find more old recordings
of the quartet!
Monday, September 27
Fisticuffs in the
Church of the Holy Sepulcher? This can't be true! When I visited there
the placid priests were just happy to receive my bribe - er, offering.
Carmon Friedrich with a much-needed reminder about the importance of
Church Renewal Update: Here are some thoughts by Mary Pride on
performance standards for your church's programs, including "failure
standards" and "success standards." I especially like what she has to say
about children's programs:
Let me give you an
example of a failure standard for a church's Christian education program.
The leaders could say something like this: "After two years in our Sunday
school program, we expect that all of the students should be able to
recite the Ten Commandments, the Lord's Prayer, and Psalm 23 from memory.
They should know the books of the Bible in order, and be able to locate
any passage in 15 seconds or less. They should be able to give a concise
summary of each Bible book, and score no less than 90 percent on the test
of Bible knowledge we will give them at that time. If at least 90 percent
of the students can't meet that standard, our Sunday school program has
failed, and we will need to pray about it, redesign it, and also
reconsider our program for recruiting and training Sunday school
teachers." Can you get that, or anything like it, in writing from any
modern church board anywhere?
I don't think a Christian
can reasonably vote for John Kerry. John Kerry has openly defied the
Church and two thousand years of settled Church doctrine. In fact, there
is no reason to believe him anything but a secularist with fairly open
disdain for the faith once delivered to the Apostles.
So far, so
good. Now comes this:
Bush is not perfect, but his
imperfections are less certain and more open to dispute. Social issues do
not cut against both candidates with equal force.
All Christians are
called to help the poor. How to do so is open to dispute. What is not open
to dispute is that John Kerry will advance abortion, a form of murder, and
the homosexual agenda.
course, in equating Islam with Christianity or paying only lip-service to
the pro-life cause or appointing sodomites to public office, is less open
to our disapprobation. He adds (pardon all the "sics"):
may exist in the margins of the evangelical academic community or in
half-way houses to main-stream church's
on their way out, but I do not seem
[sic] them as
numerically very significant. My bet is that eighty-percent of white
will vote for Bush.
It is hard to imagine much more unity on any issue (including sadly
percent? Sad, but true. We evangelicals love our numbers - and our "unity"
- don't we? He concludes:
Our founders said, "No
King, but King Jesus!" Fair enough, but the King's minister's must act,
even at risk of being sacked, or His rule will be wrongly limited.
downright corn-fused. I wonder if he's even heard that there's a 100
percent pro-life candidate who actually believes "No King But King Jesus!"
Ah, the blessing of being a
9:12 AM The
bane of blind fealty to the state:
"Heavenly grace gave us
We promise Hitler loyalty
to the end..."
"He was our idol; he was a
demi-god. I'll tell you quite honestly: If someone had tried to shoot
Hitler, then I would have leapt forward and died for him. And nowadays I
know it was madness."
amazing quotes from the
Language tests for citizenship? A great idea but impossible in
hyper-tolerant America. Too bad we don't have the courage of
(Having studied, preached, and taught in German-speaking Switzerland, I
can empathize with those foreigners who are learning German. But German
isn't that difficult to master. My wife was speaking it within three
months of our arrival in Basel. The key was avoiding the "American ghetto"
and forcing yourself to speak the language daily. As a Baptist, I call it
the "immersion" technique of language learning, and it works.)
Interesting take in this morning's
Die Zeit: the outcome of
the election hinges on Kerry's
ability to make the unconstitutional Iraq war a central theme.
Die erste Amtszeit von
George W. Bush war begleitet von Enthüllungen
Skandalen. Trotzdem führt der Präsident deutlich in den Umfragen. Noch, sagt Seymour
Hersh, Veteran des investigativen Journalismus. Jetzt kommt es darauf an,
ob John Kerry den Krieg zum zentralen Thema macht.
Farm Update: Despite a finicky bailer, we got another 243 bales up over
the weekend, thanks to the great weather the Lord blessed us with this
summer. The fallout from Jeanne is hitting the Piedmont today and tomorrow
so it looks like I'll get to spend several hours working on my sabbatical
project (but, alas, no riding). Of course, neither farming nor writing is
more "spiritual" than the other. If we want to escape from the
sacred-secular dichotomy this truth must condition our every thought. The
knowledge that everything I have is God's - my hay fields as well as my
Greek grammars, not to mention the most important possession of all, my
family - is what unifies my heart and should make everything in life
sacred to me.
And you thought
II was over?
A judge points out the fine mess
ignoring the good old
Constitution has gotten us into. Of course, most politicians are
following the new, "living" Constitution to a "t." So the question arises:
Which Constitution are you following?
Which party puts God first?
It matters little that conservatives are
having more children than liberals. It won't make a whit of difference
once they start reading Churchianity Today and Worldly Magazine.
Kerry for his pro-abortion stance. I guess it's still OK to ignore the
Please be sure to check out a
lane on the Internet Highway by DBO contributor Matt Gamel. A fun
onramp, and some really nifty curves! (By the way, Matt, don't get
discouraged by small beginnings. The first month DBO was online we received a
grand total of 33 hits. I'm not kidding. This month we surpassed the one
and a half million mark. So hang in there and remember: Aller Anfang ist schwer.)
Heartiest congratulations to Grassy Creek Baptist Church (NC), which
celebrated its 250th anniversary yesterday. My own congregation, Averett
Baptist Church (VA), is a daughter church, as are many others in the
Piedmont. One interesting anecdote. When Grassy Creek was founded, the
church voted to require every man to attend Sunday services. If you missed
a service, the next Sunday you were required to give an explanation. If
your excuse was a lame one, the church could vote to censure you. After
three censures, you were voted out of the congregation. My how things have
And I thought
Holy Laughter was
Bad idea. A partial election, excluding the Sunni areas, will only
embolden the insurgency and put our sons and daughters at even further
If you've ever walked the controversial temple mount in Jerusalem, as I
have, you know how old it is. The latest question? How much longer before
Saturday, September 25
Do not read this
you can put up with a Reformed-leaning Southern Baptist who is a
misanthropic paleoconservative to boot. Don't say I didn't warn you!
I see fellow bibliophile
Friedrich is recommending a book by one of my favorite novelists,
Helen MacInnes. Bravo! I might add to your list Agent in Place,
Home Is the Hunter, and especially
Who Downing Street
really wants to win.
Senior Labour MPs and
ministers should also go public with their personal preferences for a John
Kerry victory. This would help to reunite a Labour party bewildered by the
closeness of Mr Blair's relationship with Mr Bush. But it would appeal to
a much broader audience at home - British voters across the political
spectrum prefer Mr Kerry to Mr Bush by a margin of five to one.
might could work where I live.
Everything's looking up for Allawi,
Speaking of freedom,
democracy and murder, the latest reporting on our current favorite
Prime Minister, Iyad "Little Saddam" Allawi,
feature his pistol shots to the heads of captured Iraqi prisoners.
I was concerned, before this, about Allawi’s newly established domestic
intelligence bureaucracy, to keep Iraqis in line so they can all have a
nice new democracy. I needn’t have worried, and you can bet George W.
What does it all mean?
Like they say, you’re either with us or against us. I’ve seen enough,
and I’ve chosen a side. And while I don’t support governmental safety
laws on principle, like Bette Davis I must advise all Americans to
fasten your seatbelts. It’s going to be a bumpy night.
Ethiopia. And yes, I hope to learn a few phrases in
Today's the day, notes
raconteur and gadfly, renowned in poetry and legend":
The Virginia League of the South wishes to invite you to our Ninth
Annual State Meeting
September 25, 2004
Best Western at Hunt Ridge
25 Willow Spring Rd
Come all, free admission
This year our topic will be illegal immigration, its impact on Virginia
and the rest of the South. Illegal immigration is drastically changing
Virginia. Harrisonburg’s public schools are now over 30%
Hispanic. This number is increasing exponentially. As reported in the
August 15, 2004, New York Times Magazine, “Hillbangers” have arrived in
the Shenandoah Valley. “Hillbangers” are members of Mara Salvatrucha, or
MS-13, a large
gang of El Salvadorans. An MS-13, 17-year-old female gang member was
found murdered, gang style, in Shenandoah County, in July 2003. Local
law enforcement agencies throughout the Valley have officers
investigating alien gang activities.
Is immigration a force of nature or a political force? Can a world wide
war on terrorism be fought with a border open to massive illegal
Come join the Virginia League of the South as we discuss these issues.
Featured speakers will include a former INS Special Agent, an
immigration control group director, and Dr. Michael Hill, President,
League of the South. [And Harry Seabrook, world-famous raconteur and
gadfly, renowned in poetry and legend, etc.]
For more information contact Randy Jamison at 276-326-6728 or e-mail at
Giving riding a
Friday, September 24
Am off to campus to check up on the Outlook situation and to meet with
students. I still may not be receiving certain emails. You might hold off
on sending me any mail for a day or two while we are resolving this issue.
Best to all!
What Hitler's voice
Yep, we get the point:
President Bush "said on Thursday that he and Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad
Allawi would 'stay the course' in Iraq."
I'm a bit tired of hearing from the president that we'll "stay the
course" in Iraq, and not just because I oppose the war. Perhaps someone
should check Bush for a concussion (one of the signs of which is
repetitive questioning), or at least get him a thesaurus.
sampling of his usage of the offending phrase follows:
"This nation will stay the course."--Oct.
"And we will stay the course."--Oct.
was able to assure them that we were going to stay the course."--Nov.
"...assured him that we would stay the course."--Apr.
"And, yet, we must stay the course."--Apr.
"We're going to stay the course in Iraq."--Apr.
"And we'll stay the course."--Apr.
"We're there to stay the course."--June
"We must stay the course."--Aug.
think it's safe to say "enough already, we get the point."
Therefore we conclude that
wisdom is correctly referred to in the female gender in the above
verses. Again, observe the parallels between a godly wife and wisdom:
Both are valued above
rubies, (3:15 & 31:10), and both are a crown unto a man (4:9 & 12:4).
Doug's Phillip's website has some
excellent resources for those who believe that the church ought to
unite families, not segregate them. All of these have driven me more and
more in the last three years to study what the Scriptures have to say
about the church, and I am amazed at what I find - so different from what
is usually given in a course on "Christian Education in the Local Church."
essay by Jonathan Grubbs piggy-backs off our lead post on DBO today.
I used to be a very strong
supporter of the Republican party, but over the years the GOP has
abandoned the conservative principles it once held dear in efforts to
reach out to the moderates and to appear to be a more “compassionate
conservative” party. In doing this I feel they have compromised on too
many conservative principles and have started to quickly drift towards
the left. We have pro-choice Republicans, “Log Cabin” Republicans,
Republicans who support big government, etc. Just as “moral relativism”
has ruined the school system and worldview of so many Americans, so
“conservative relativism” has ruined the Republican Party that started
out as a small third-party in the 1850s.
has a blog I enjoy reading.
Buried Treasure has a lengthy
that's well worth reading. Here's a snippet from Carmon Friedrich's
I'm ranting about the
silliness that passes for Christian literature not only because I think
such tripe is harmful to the people it's purported to "encourage in
their faith" by teaching them unbiblical views about God, the universe
and everything, but it also dishonors our Lord and distorts our
witness by giving a picture of Christianity as substandard and a bad
imitation of the world.
In his book Addicted
to Mediocrity, the (old) Franky Schaeffer said, ala Wodehouse,
"Whenever Christians, and evangelicals in particular, have attempted to
"reach the world" through the media—TV, film, publishing and so on—the
thinking public gets the firm idea that, like soup in a bad restaurant,
Christians' brains are better left unstirred."
So what do we do,
besides embarrassedly snicker, or wring our hands or rant?
I guess we keep trying.
Let's keep writing poems and stories and books, even if they aren't
top-notch. Just try to make them original! And true. And
glorifying to God, even if you don't mention someone praying the
Sinner's Prayer. Keep singing, keep playing and writing music. Keep
painting. Keep producing those especially creative works called children
and read lots of excellent books with them. I'm afraid you won't find
many in the CBD catalog.
Here's what Republicans on the Hill are saying about Iraq:
So if you don’t want to hear a Democrat say that the situation in Iraq
is deteriorating dangerously, listen to a Republican Senator instead. "The
thing we can do is hold ourselves hostage to some grand illusion we’re
winning," said Chuck Hagel, a Republican from Nebraska. "Right now, we are
not winning. Things are getting worse …. The fact is, we’re in deep
trouble in Iraq."
Here's one for you. What gender is the noun "blog"?
Could this be describing
Cut off their connection to
the Web and people have moments of "withdrawal and feelings of loss,
frustration, and disconnectedness" according to a report released
Wednesday by Yahoo. Dubbed -- and we're not making this up -- the Internet
Deprivation Study, the Yahoo-sponsored research tried to get a group of
consumers to give stay offline, then report back. Nearly half couldn't
take the Web-less world for more than two weeks, and the median time
participants could go without logging on was a measly five days.
I want to get
this on DVD. Though the story line doesn't follow the book, Rathbone
This email warmed my heart:
I write to you as an
encouragement that your writing speaks to my heart and encourages me
that I am not alone. Keep fighting the good fight. When I read "our
situation in America is so hopeless that only God can do something
about it", I thought "that is the conclusion that I came to some
months ago"!!! I too have read Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Cost of
Discipleship and share it with some others, but it doesn't resonate
with them as it did me. Dave, by His Grace we were called and by His
Grace we shall carry on. God bless you, brother.
for writing, dear friend. I do not want you to think we are discouraged.
We are not. It is the opposite. I have found such personal joy and
satisfaction in watching the Holy Spirit do His work in the various
aspects of our ministry. May the Lord bless you, and do pray for us.
Thursday, September 23
Sorry ol' me. Been tearing down an old barn to get its tin and lumber.
Am in a pitiful state. If I can hit my thumb with the hammer, I will. If
I can step on a nail, I will. Feel like a total
( P ) Pronunciation
- A clumsy person.
- A stupid person; a dolt.
[Yiddish klots, from Middle High German kloz,
block, lump, from Old High German.]
O well, back
Steve Bell's latest:
Sure'n begorrah, bejibbers and bejabbers,
between me forty coats and me fifty
pockets I do declare in front of all the saints, I
just love them
Irish farmers for stickin' up for them fox hunters!
at his very best. The last line made me think of Chief Inspector
Dreyfuss in The Pink Panther Strikes Again. (Make that former Chief
Bush's campaign depends
on the containment of any contrary perception of reality. He must evade,
deny and suppress it. His true opponent is not his Democratic foe - called
unpatriotic and the candidate of al-Qaida by the vice-president - but
events. Bush's latest vision is his shield against them. He invokes the
power of positive thinking, as taught by Emile Coue, guru of
autosuggestion in the giddy 1920s, who urged mental improvement through
constant repetition: "Every day in every way I am getting better and
Ooo, ooo, ooo, this is
Little Davie Bahnsen makes his case against Peroutka.
One only reads Davie for entertainment, not for serious thought, which
makes him a natural fit with the CCL simpletons. The way he throws his
support behind the anti-Christian anti-educational establishment is
priceless. See if you can follow the reasoning of the Incrementalist. He
says he hates the state of the schools, and Bush has thrown too much money
at them, and he wants the federal government to get out of the business,
"HOWEVER, the notion that this federalized education fiasco is to be
abolished TOMORROW is contra-intelligent, and anti-Christian, to the
core." Yes, he used the word "anti-Christian." And since the beast cannot
be dismembered tomorrow, we need
more of the same in
the hope that someday we will get less of it. If you don’t follow me here,
you are hopelessly irrelevant. Did you know that import tariffs are a
violation of the Eighth Commandment? Try not to laugh! Davie calls
Peroutka’s belief in the criminalization of drug possession "bizarre." On
abortion, Davie prefers a president who has demonstrated that he will
speak against it on occasion to a candidate who vows to outlaw it on day
one. "Nobody could outlaw it on day one!" pants Davie, and therefore
Peroutka is "PATENTLY DISHONEST, and EXTREMELY DANGEROUS… As the brilliant
Rod Martin of The Vanguard PAC commented… ‘Yeah, him and what army?’"
Their buddy Candy Sandlin has called Peroutka "a national socialist." Yes,
that would be a Nazi. I’ve made a vow not to pick on retards, and I’m not
going to break it yet. As I said, one reads this stuff purely for
Twelve seats go to the
far right in Saxony. Will the NDP be
8:37 AM Whew.
I feel a lot safer now that
Cat Stevens has been denied entry back into the Land of the Free.
The latest from that
out in California:
Since my article,
George W. Bush - Heretic," has continued
to be very popular and has inspired much discussion in the blogosphere, I
wanted to once again bring the piece to the attention of my readers.
With the election only
weeks away, the topic is still very relevant. I ask that you pass the
article on to your Christian friends and encourage them not to cast
their vote for a man whose words and actions deny Christ.
If you still
want more, go
Got a nice letter today from the editor of
this blog. Check it out.
Truth: It's always the
first casualty of war.
That was the wrong
question, the Liberal Democrat peer, Lord Goodhart, told peers recently.
The right question was: "Did that hard evidence exist?" If Downing Street
had looked for it, the attorney general "would, in all probability, not
have been able to advise that the invasion of Iraq was legal, and we would
not have gone to war", said Goodhart. But the leaked documents make clear
that evidence, facts - indeed, the truth - was not Downing Street's main
We will be getting up an unprecedented fourth cutting of hay today. And
the weather for working outdoors is magnificent, at least in our neck of
the woods. Farming is difficult in the best of times, especially on the
old body. Just as there are no perfect bodies, so there is no perfect
communication between human beings. This perfection must await Jesus'
return. How thankful I am in my own problems and dealing with the problems
of others in my work that it is possible on the basis of the finished work
of Christ not to have to say falsely that all is well or to plunge into
despair. All of these thoughts flooded my mind as I read the words of this
beautiful hymn this morning:
O Thou in whose presence
my soul takes delight,
On whom in affliction I call;
My comfort by day and my song in the night,
My hope, my salvation, my all.
Where dost Thou, dear Shepherd,
resort with Thy sheep
To feed them in pastures of love?
Say, why in the valley of death should I weep,
Or alone in this wilderness rove?
He looks, and ten thousand
of angels rejoice,
And myriads now wait for His word;
He speaks, and eternity, filled with His voice,
Re-echoes the praise of the Lord.
Yesterday the seminary email service had a major outage and I lost all of
my emails (inbox and sent items!) from 9/22 back to 7/18. If
you need to resend something, please do so.
got Jon Roland in trouble with the law:
IF YOU LOVE THE
COMPLETED SEP. 17, 1787
I try to vary my horse's routine whenever I ride, but yesterday was meant
for cantering. After airing him out with a full gallop uphill, he
performed a collected canter for about 15 minutes. It seemed tireless for
him, but I was exhausted when we were done. It takes a lot to to be able
to do little and achieve a lot. The less I do in terms of aids, the more
comfortable I am and the more I get done. Just sit and let gravity do its
nothing like a good canter.
Wednesday, September 22
"Terrorism's Chilling Similarities"
Al Qaeda Beheads
**Warning Graphic Video**
Windows Media Audio/Video file)
Americans Behead Babies
**Warning Graphic Video**
"Go To this website and see baby scream bloody murder!"
The Silent Scream
"See live abortions online"
Under the Bush administration over 1,000 Americans have been
killed in Iraq. And under the Bush administration over 4,500
American babies are slaughtered each day. By shedding innocent
blood G.W. Bush has defiled his office and abrogated his
authority! He is a murderer! It is a monstrous lie perpetrated by
devils suggesting this blood guilty man is "pro-life." Instead of
calling the murderer to repentance through Jesus Christ, it is a
great shame upon Christians who suggest voting for the damned!
Murderers do "not inherit the kingdom of God." (Galatians
5:21). Murderers "shall have
their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone:
which is the second death." (Revelation
21:8) President Bush is more of a
murderer than the head of al Qaeda, Osama bin Laden. And "there is
no respect of persons with God." (Romans
2:11) --Jim Rudd
Please take a moment and read this mother's
to the faithfulness, mercy, and grace of God.
This is still one of the most
aspects of the war on terrorism.
Howard Dean on the
coming national draft. I've often said that one of the most disturbing
aspects of the New Right is its close relationship with evangelical
Christianity, and you can be sure that the rank and file of our churches
will be in the forefront of support for Bush's latest threat to
constitutional government, forgetting the difference between
patriotism and nationalism.
Neo-patriots think that if
you criticize U.S. foreign policy or the country’s obsession with
security you are “unpatriotic.” True patriots believe that the exercise
of critical judgment is absolutely necessary to any civilization that is
to stand or forge ahead, and that it is both their right and duty to
criticize their government. They concur with President Theodore
Roosevelt: “Patriotism means to stand by the country. It does not mean
to stand by the President or any other public official save exactly to
the degree in which he himself stands by the country.”
I'm sure from time to time you've had your morning devotions with your
hymnal by your side. The weather has been so absolutely gorgeous these
days that as I sat on my front porch watching the sun rise I grabbed the
hymnal off the organ and sang the words of an old hymn. It was originally
composed in 1744 and published in a German Hymnal. Read the words slowly,
thoughtfully. Pause to luxuriate in their message.
When morning gilds the
skies my heart awaking cries:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Alike at work and prayer, to Jesus I repair:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
When you begin the
day, O never fail to say,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
And at your work rejoice, to sing with heart and voice,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Does sadness fill my
mind? A solace here I find,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Or fades my earthly bliss? My comfort still is this,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
When mirth for music
longs, this is my song of songs:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
When evening shadows fall, this rings my curfew call,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
When sleep her balm
denies, my silent spirit sighs,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
When evil thoughts molest, with this I shield my breast,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
The night becomes as
day when from the heart we say:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
The powers of darkness fear when this sweet chant they hear:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
In Heav’n’s eternal
bliss the loveliest strain is this,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Let earth, and sea and sky from depth to height reply,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Be this, while life is
mine, my canticle divine:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Sing this eternal song through all the ages long:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
"Pitiable." That's the word that kept coming to mind last night as I
slurped a bowl of delicious butter pecan ice cream in our library at
Bradford Hall with my wife and son. Our Sheltie named Shiloh assumed his
routine: he sat down next to me, eyes glued to my bowl, counting the
seconds until he could relieve me of my sullied dish and polish it clean.
O those sad, pleading eyes, patient yet persistent - pitiable, if you
will. As it happened, all three of us finished eating at the exact same
time, and down came the bowls - not one, but three. You never saw such
ecstasy in your life as Shiloh scurried from treasure to treasure.
nothing like a dog.
Tuesday, September 21
Jonathan Grubbs on the
anti-homeschool bias in the media. (Update: Jonathan Grubbs responds
to my link:)
It's not simply "anti-homeschool bias in the media". I spoke with the
newspaper reporter who wrote the story. She said that all of her
information came from the Muskegon County Sheriff's office.
This is another gross example of "our tax dollars" hard at work!
How I feel about
Maybe this is Dan's
Dan said all these things to a
British audience. However, back in the USA, he smothered his conscience
and told his TV audience: "George Bush is the President. He makes the
decisions. He wants me to line up, just tell me where."
During the war in Vietnam,
Dan's predecessor at CBS, Walter Cronkite, asked some pretty hard
questions about Nixon's handling of the war in Vietnam. Today, our sons
and daughters are dying in Bush wars. But, unlike Cronkite, Dan could
not, would not, question George Bush, Top Gun Fighter Pilot, Our Maximum
Beloved Leader in the war on terror.
Mixed message at
DBO contributor Keith Brumley, who just launched his own
blog, sent me this great email:
Greetings Dr. Black,
Really liked this
article for two reasons. First, because you rightly point out that
Jesus is Lord over every aspect of life - including politics. As a
libertarian Christian, I keep this in mind as I go to the polls. I
also appreciate the Constitution Party and vote for them as well.
Second (and a bit
more controversial) I liked it because of your statement on baptism.
As you may recall, I am a part of the "Restoration Movement" (I.e.,
the Churches of Christ & Christian Churches). Many have labeled us as
folk who believe in "baptismal regeneration." This is wrong. While we
do preach and teach that baptism (like faith & repentance) are
essential responses to God's good news in Christ, we don't preach or
teach that baptism, in and of itself, "regenerates." Baptism is an
integral part of responding in faith to Christ Jesus. Without faith
and repentance, it's merely getting wet. Coupled with faith and
repentance, it is part of the process whereby one is united into a
living union with God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
While it is true that
early "Campbelites," in their zeal to emphasize baptism, made too much
of baptism, I also believe many evangelicals make too little of
baptism. I'm thankful to see you putting a positive emphasis on
And, of course, I remain open to further
study. I know I have no corner on the market of God's truth and am
always happy to journey with others who help me see His truth more
From the mailbag:
Dr. Black, as a Catholic
I read with interest your article on the occurrence
of the principal of 'tolerationism' within Evangelicalism. The thought
occurred to me that this is the case of a political principal forming
instead of Faith forming political principals.
This tendency is something that I have noticed taking place with American
politics and religion for some time. The Christian faith in the US seems
be infected with the heresies of Americanism (American Exceptionalism) and
This is a great piece on the bane of
urbanization. My wife and I can't hardly drive in
Raleigh or Chapel Hill any
more, it reminds us so much of the crazy gridlock we knew in LA (and that ain't
Lower Alabama). Cities aren't the natural home of people but they suit
governments to a "t."
A war on any abstraction - whether a war on "terrorism" or not - is a sham. Add to
that the evil of preemptive war and you've got the breeding ground for
more and more terrorism. Force only begets more more force, and the world
is less safe after the invasion of Iraq.
Baldwin calls us to stop looking at the Iraq War with our eyes firmly
Declare "Mission Accomplished," topple a few statues, and get the boys
home. Wish it were that easy, Mr. President. Sorry. You're stuck with the
yanking the troops to appease the voters won't help.
The Great Flip-Flopper does in fact understand that a vote to authorize
force is not an endorsement of pre-emptive war. Kerry was clear on that
point in his
speech, and for that I give him credit.
Founders Ministries offers some
important helps to Sunday School teachers who desire to wean
themselves (and their students) from over-dependence on the Lifeway material. I would even
take it a step further and invite class members to bring their
Bibles instead of their lesson guides, and require teachers to study the Scriptures for themselves before consulting whatever
resources they may end up employing in class.
Monday, September 20
Ian Black makes impeccably good logic in his
Al-Qaida may have suffered
some serious blows, but its Jihadist affiliates are continuing their
deadly business across the globe. The terrorism
Bush vowed to eradicate after the 9/11 attacks seems more virulent and widespread.
Indeed, it has taken root where it did not exist before: in Iraq itself.
Jacques Chirac, the French
president and leader of Europe's anti-war camp, made no bones about
his views when he declared that the US-led invasion of Iraq and toppling
of Saddam Hussein had opened up a "Pandora's box which none of us can
terrible francophone like myself sides with Jacques on this one.
Just back from the big city of South Boston getting 16 foot gates for our
horse pasture. The rest of the afternoon will be spent cutting hay (our
fourth cutting this summer!) and airing out our tents for our next
Get pregnant -
Allawi: "We are winning in Iraq." GOP Congressmen say
no. War is
never by the
Farm Update: My son's latest interest is wanting to
make our own maple syrup
next year. Why not, we've got the trees....
Maybe it is just me being me, but is this the best a
Republican blogger can do?
I smile and look around.
Arnold Schwarzenegger and Serena Williams, Tina Brown and President George
H.W. Bush, all talking and laughing. For at least one week, it is a happy
child" (not a "fetus") was among those killed during the recent
hurricane-caused rains in North Carolina. Question: Why do we speak of a
dead baby as a "child" and a live one as a "fetus"?
The Dems are still wondering
what happened to Zell.
The Darfur disaster
will never be resolved by a self indulgent, entitlement-rich, bloated
organization that thinks it can fix any situation. Why don't the Islamic
nations take some leadership in this awful crisis?
Operation Market-Garden, and its famous bridge too far,
Arnhem. I well recall visiting the city a few years ago and its war museum. Sadly, the main result of the war was Europe's slide into a
gigantic welfare state. What a great (and sorely neglected)
The latest on the
Uh oh, bad news for Herr
Schroeder, who is facing increased opposition from Germans who still
want to be Germans. Socialist Schroeder, who is now married to his fourth
wife, has sent German "peacekeepers" far and wide in support of the UN.
Great Weltanschauung, ain't it? At least it's good to know the right still
has the power to exasperate the left in Deutschland.
A nice tribute to a man who "helped to restore the
value of developing a Christian worldview and offered the intellectuals
tools that evangelicals needed to properly engage with the secular
culture." I had the privilege of sitting under this pastor's teaching
when I lived in Switzerland. Read about him
7:48 AM An excellent article from the
Guardian on how America views itself as a victim - and the way it
exploits its victimhood to support its moral crusades.
When 3,000 people died on
September 11, Le Monde declared: "We are all Americans now." Around 12,000
civilians have died in Iraq since the beginning of the war, yet one waits
in vain for anyone to declare that we have all become Iraqis, or Afghans,
let alone Palestinians. This is not a competition. Sadly, there are enough
victims to go around. Sadder still, if the US continues on its present
path, there will be many more. Demanding a monopoly on the right to feel
and to inflict pain simply inverts victimhood's regular contradiction -
the Bush administration displays material strength and moral weakness.
Sunday, September 19
back at war" says head of British Army.
Good Sunday Morning! This afternoon we will be entertaining guests at our
table -- twice. Our guest of honor will be our revival speaker, and we
have invited church members both for an after-church lunch and a
pre-evening meeting supper. It's always a joy watching my wife doing what
she does best and to perfection. This morning our men's group is off to
sing at the local nursing home - good ol' country Gospel, gut bucket
and GEE-tar included.
Saturday, September 18
In case you missed it,
Covenant News is reporting about the growing problem of
euthanasia in the Netherlands.
This song is
cool! Here are
words. For you Kamaainas out there, I used to sing it, "I want to go
back to my little Black Shack in Kailua over the Pali." (Below: My beloved
home "over the Pali.")
King Tut visits Basel. My wife
and I saw the same artifacts in the Cairo Museum. Fascinating!
Incidentally, during our European tour next summer we will get to spend
the Lord's Day in Basel. I will be preaching (in German), and
English-speaking services will be available as well. I am really looking
forward to seeing our many Swiss friends again!
Sheldon Richman on whether Kerry or Bush "served his country" -
whatever that means.
I am annoyed by so much of
the debate about Bush's and Kerry's roles during Vietnam. The other
night Carl Bernstein of Watergate fame repeatedly said that the one
thing no one can doubt is that George Bush was a "shirker" and Kerry
wasn't. If he meant that Bush shirked according to the standards Bush
himself would likely endorse, then Bernstein is right. But objectively
speaking, Bernstein is wrong. To shirk is to avoid a duty or
responsibility. No one had a duty or responsibility to go to Vietnam and
shoot at perfect strangers who had never attacked him and to risk
getting killed or maimed or just badly screwed up. Likewise, Kerry
didn't "serve his country" when he went to Vietnam. At most he served a
corrupt U.S. government that continuously imposed on the American people
(not to mention the Vietnamese) by making them fight that immoral war.
Why the mystique surrounding the Arabian horse? Maybe it's because it was
original breed. What beautiful creatures!
Neat link on
epigraphy with various fonts, including obsolescent letters like the
impartiality of the Gospel and peace on earth:
Bad Christian theology regarding the
"Holy Land" contributed to the tragic cruelty of the Crusades in the
Middle Ages. Lamentably, bad Christian theology is today attributing to
secular Israel a divine mandate to conquer and hold Palestine, with the
consequence that the Palestinian people are marginalized and regarded as
This doctrine is both contrary to the teaching of
the New Testament and a violation of the Gospel mandate.
In addition, this theology puts those
Christians who are urging the violent seizure and occupation of
Palestinian land in moral jeopardy of their own bloodguiltiness. Are we
as Christians not called to pray for and work for peace, warning both
parties to this conflict that those who live by the sword will die by
the sword? Only the
Gospel of Jesus Christ can bring both temporal reconciliation and the
hope of an eternal and heavenly inheritance to the Israeli and the
Palestinian. Only through Jesus Christ can anyone know peace on earth.
What will you be doing on Tuesday, May 31, 2005, Deo volente? Why not join
us in Erfurt, Germany? By the way, rather than staying in a hotel, we'll
have the privilege of overnighting in Luther’s Augustinian Monastery --
just one of the many unique features of our European tour.
here. I hope you will prayerfully consider joining us. It's gonna be
gobs of fun!
The young shall
Iraq is not another Vietnam. It is
far graver, like the Germans going into Stalingrad, fighting for every
A DBO reader asks a very good question:
James Dobson can endorse other candidates, why not
Peroutka? I have heard Dr. Dobson admit that he voted
for the Constitution Party candidate in 2000. He said
no one in the two major parties shared his beliefs. I
say to Dr. Dobson, nothing has changed in the last
four years. Things have only gotten worse. His
suspicions about Bush have been shown to be correct.
Like Pat Buchanan mysteriously offering no endorsement
for Michael Peroutka, so has Dr. James Dobson. Dr.
Black I will continue to pray that all Christians
offer their uncompromising support to the Michael
Peroutka and Chuck Baldwin.
N. T. Wright has some good things to say about the
-- both then and now:
...if Paul's answer to
Caesar's empire is the empire of Jesus, what does that say about this new
empire, living under the rule of its new lord? It implies a high and
strong ecclesiology, in which the scattered and often muddled cells of
women, men and children loyal to Jesus as Lord form colonial outposts of
the empire that is to be: subversive little groups when seen from Caesar's
point of view, but when seen Jewishly an advance foretaste of the time
when the earth shall be filled with the glory of the God of Abraham and
the nations will join Israel in singing God's praises. From this point of
view, therefore, this counter-empire can never be merely critical, never
merely subversive. It claims to be the reality of which Caesar's empire is
the parody; it claims to be modelling the genuine humanness, not least the
justice and peace, and the unity across traditional racial and cultural
barriers, of which Caesar's empire boasted.
monotheism seems to be been missing in these days of state-worship. From
this standpoint in social history we need to see Christ again against the
backdrop of the first century and hear His words in a context of
Friday, September 17
Homeschool moms always
say it best.
Only if I believed in our two-party monopoly would I agree with Andrew
Greeley that there's
choice in '04.
The instructors at one of the Ethiopian schools I'll be teaching at have
requested that I bring copies of my intermediate Greek grammar,
It's Still Greek to Me, for their students to use. I am happy to do
so, but I do have some concerns. Not about the students' ability to
understand intermediate Greek. I'm sure they can handle that. It's my
silly English I'm worried about, especially some pretty stupid puns - "Up
the Greek without a paddle," "to Koine phrase," "tense times with verbs,"
etc. And how about that cartoon with mice illustrating preposition usage?
Well, at least it should be interesting....
Who really cares about the
tailspin over at CBS News? Not this former TV news junkie!
Mmm, mmm, now this is something you can really sink your teeth into:
My generation--that baby
boom bunch that we've heard so much about--has a compulsion to change
the church to be what they want it to be. Why? Oh....don't you know?
Our generation has been
told for the whole trip that we are special. We deserve more. We need
more. We are wounded. We are alienated from authority. We are the
victims of Vietnam, and divorce, and educational breakdown. Decades of
advertising have convinced us that we need our own Oldsmobile, cause we
can't drive daddy's. We're smarter. Thinner. Better. We've got the short
attention span. Television and movies are our medium. We need stories.
We're casual. We need to be met "where we are." We need to be in "real
relationships." We aren't satisfied with "church the way it used to be."
Yeah right. What a crock.
This is the most flattered, catered to, lied to and indulged generation
in history. I loathe my generation, not because we don't have some good
people. We do, but we also have generational selfishness honed into a
kind of idolatry that is truly awesome to behold. We are big, fat,
demographic bullies, who won't play with anyone else unless we get
everything "our way."
Contrarian Manifesto for the Church Growth Debate. Then add Michael
Spencer's website to your list of favorites.
Our friendly neighborhood hawk has been picking off our hens one at a
time. Needless to say, our otherwise free-ranging chickens are being
quarantined until our fine feathered friend can be, ahem, "taken care of."
Latest German WW II film juxtaposes the Battle for Berlin with Hitler's
bunker. Did the Leader have a human touch? Read about
The Downfall (Der
Untergang) and why so many people sacrificed their lives and their
children's lives for the state. Here's a
that lauds the picture for being a German production and not another
example of American "spin":
Zuerst einmal möchte ich sagen, dass ich
es klasse finde, dass auch mal ein deutscher Film über dieses heikle Thema
produziert wird. Dieser wird - im Gegensatz zu den US-Filmen - um
einiges objektiver ausfallen.
Dennoch werden in diesem Film einige - meiner Meinung nach sehr
entscheidende Dinge - nicht geklärt. Denn Hitler und der Großteil der
damaligen Führungsetage Deutschlands, waren schwer drogensüchtig. Herrmann
Göring zum Beispiel, war extrem Morphiumsüchtig...: "In den höheren Rängen
der NS-Hierarchie wusste man über seine Sucht sehr wohl Bescheid, und in
Gefangenschaft begab er sich mit zwei dicken Koffern,
20.000 Ampullen Morphium. Es schmerzte ihn sehr, dass ihm die Amerikaner
diese abnahmen, und sein völlig verändertes Aussehen beim Nürnberger
Prozess war eine Folge der unfreiwilligen Entziehungskur. Er war eine Art
'NS-Hippie' mit einer Vorliebe für Lametta und Paradiesuniformen..."
Oder Hitler: "Er war schwer Amphetaminsüchtig (damals Pervitin; heute
Speed), bekam gegen Darmprobleme regelmäßig kleine schwarze Pillen (Wirkstoffe:
Atropin und Strychnin) und lies sich seine entzündeten Schleimhäute mit
Kokain pinseln. Weiterhin wurde er vor seinen 'großen Reden' immer 'fitgespritzt'
und das Atropin (Tollkirsche) sorgte dafür, dass Hitler seine berühmten,
stechenden Augen bekam." Versorgt wurde er regelmäßig von Dr. Morell, der
in der Führungsetage nur als "Reichsspritzenmeister" bekannt war. Dieser
Dr. Morell war ebenfalls die ganze Zeit bei Hitler im Führerbunker und
wich ihm nur sehr selten von der Seite... und hätte vll. doch in diesem
Film erwähnt werden sollen.
Dennoch werde ich mir diesen Film anschauen, da er - wie oben bereits
geschrieben - eine deutsche Produktion ist und nicht von "hirngespinnsten"
durchtränkt ist, wie so mancher US-Film.
Did you notice? Columnist
David Saransohn of the Oregonian
pointed out the curious gap in all the talk at the Republican National
Convention about Iraq:
At this convention, you
don't hear much about Iraq.
That is, Iraq the
You hear constantly about
Iraq the symbol, the demonstration of American resolve, the place that
will be a beacon of democracy throughout the Middle East and the Muslim
world. Speakers repeatedly invoke Iraq as a stage set for President Bush's
determination, a symbol of a rebuilding world.
Thursday, September 16
The recent hurricanes remind me of an incident that happened on the shores
of Galilee (Yam Kinneret) when my wife and I were staying in Capernaum. The day started
out calm and peaceful, but in just a matter of seconds a great storm blew
down from the mountains to the west of the lake, and before you knew it I
was literally body-surfing in the historic Sea of Galilee - the waves were
so high. The God who could still a storm in Jesus' day is the
same God who can direct a hurricane to less-populated areas and preserve
life in the midst of great destruction. These hurricanes are not surprises
to God. He is the God of the storm and has a purpose in them. (Below: The Arbela Pass as seen from Capernaum.)
Too many of us play the numbers game. No, we never need be ashamed of
concern over numbers. The New Testament is full of them - how many people
were fed on a mountainside, how many people were added to the church on
the Day of Pentecost, etc. But a healthy church body is never preoccupied
with numbers. Even the secular press mocks our inflated membership
Ascol has pointed out. The solution?
Simply put, the answer is
doctrine. The men and women who founded and shaped the Southern Baptist
Convention in its formative years placed a high premium on sound
doctrine. They took for granted that which we have all but forgotten,
namely, that the foundation of vibrant Christian living and healthy
Christian churches is solid, biblical teaching.
Larry Pratt is right:
We have invited terrorists
to strike our schools because we have singled these institutions out as
criminal safe zones.
Beslan School Massacre.
does it again. I hate to say it, folks, but
I told you so....
Blitzer interviews Buchanan. Take a few seconds and read this
interesting dialogue. By the way, Pat, it's still not too late to
only true conservative candidate for president.
Went to the
seminary yesterday to hear Craig Blaising speak in chapel and to take
him out to lunch afterwards. Dr. Blaising is the Provost at our sister
seminary in Fort Worth and was on campus lecturing on eschatology. Where
did I take him? The Texas Steakhouse, of course.
terrific sinus headache yesterday afternoon and all evening. We don't need
a barometer around here. My sinuses are a pretty good sign of a low
female Boer in the hospital unit in the barn. My wife gently bathed her
foot in Epsom Salts, and the goat seems to be doing much better today. How
fragile and tender these young ones are, requiring constant monitoring.
prayer meetings at church have been a wonderful time and a great blessing
to all in attendance. This Sunday our "revival" begins, and I
pray the Lord will send a great awakening. Our little choir will
be singing one of my all time favorite hymns - "Come Holy Spirit."
anniversary my wife is getting me a set of old Haven of Rest
Quartet CDs, which are very hard to find. If yall know where we can find
some more (CDs or cassettes - no LPs), please let us know. I am desperate
to get my hands on some.
I see that
is back, and back with a vengeance. Both his pen and his new found
brush are active:
Welcome back to the blogosphere, Pieter.
Tuesday, September 14
What do blabatrice, honeyfugle, illatration, luscition, and oligosyllable
have in common? You won't find them in
Having a good blog is nothing to sneeze at. Or
about a great book called
Unleashing the Idea Virus
(by Seth Godin) on this blog. He argues that for any idea to spread that
you need to think of it as a virus and make it as easy as possible for
other people to spread the virus for you. It is much more effective to let
others 'sneeze' (or promote) your site into the web than to do it all
Despite what Mr. Bush and his veep say about people being "free" to pursue
so-called alternative lifestyles,
Sodomy is a crime, and for
Christians to publicly refer to this criminal activity as "gay" or as a
"life style" is an anti-Biblical presupposition that suggests to the
public, and to our civil officials, that the laws against sodomy can be
ignored. To ignore what God says is to mock God, and for Christians to
suggest that it is permissible for civil officials to ignore the
Commandments of God is iniquity -- anomia -- Greek for lawlessness (Matt.
Jim Rudd, editor
of Covenant News - and a
man who knows his Greek!
I recently spoke at a church that had lost its pastor rather suddenly.
Times of transition are a challenge but also a great opportunity to
rethink the biblical teaching about church leadership. I just reread
Alexander Strauch's Biblical Eldership and found it to be both
inspiring and convicting. If you have never thought through your position
on church leadership, I commend his work to you. An abbreviated version
may be found on the Internet by going
here. Meanwhile, let warm, aggressive affirmations of love be the
continual expression of our local churches whenever we come together -
even though we may differ as to temperament, politics, and personality!
And here's one from a fellow agrarian:
... one more reason to
live and work on a farm.
"In 1989, Dr. David
Strachan, a respected epidemiologist at Britain's London School of
Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, launched a tidal wave of debate with a
complex theorem of human immunology development and disease control,
saying, 'We need dirt.'"
proposed that society's growing separation from dirt and germs may
well be the cause of weaker immune systems resulting in the growing
incidence of a wide range of maladies."
"Dirt--or to be more
specific, the microbes in the earth's soil--may be some of our best
This is a quote from
The Maker's Diet by Jordan S. Rubin, pg. 69.
Still enjoying your
completely. Three cheers for Pig Pen!
From the mailbag:
This is the Peroutka commercial that is soon to be aired in the state of
Mississippi. Thought you would like to be aware of it.
great news! Thank you very much indeed!
Jonathan Grubbs wants to know
left the door open.
In a single day, more than
4,000 illegal aliens will walk across the busiest unlawful gateway into
the U.S., the border between Arizona and Mexico. And many will obtain
phony identification papers, including bogus Social Security numbers, to
conceal their true identities and mask their unlawful presence. TIME’s
Pulitzer Prize winning investigative team, Donald L. Barlett and James B.
Steele, takes a look at the damage, the dangers, and the reasons America
fails to protect itself as millions of illegal aliens pour across the
U.S.-Mexican border this year, many from countries hostile to America.
Read a mind-boggling excerpt from Hersh's
Chain of Command to see how we got from 9/11 to Abu Ghraib.
7:59 AM Robert Dabney, one of my Southern
heroes, on our indifference to the truth:
church, whose teachers are not heartily agreed in doctrine, can only have
peace within itself at the cost of a Sadducean indifference to truth. . . . Indeed,
the ends designed by this so-called comprehension can only be gained by
indifferentism. The theory has an obvious tendency to disparage the
importance of truth. . . . So benumbing is the spirit of indifferency
begotten by this comprehension, that its tendency is to extinguish all
true life in the church which practices it. . . . Peace is preserved at
the expense of life, and the motley body dies in the stupor of its own
It struck me while reading 1 Samuel 16 this morning that God picked the
most unlikely son of Jesse to be king. "The Lord does not see as man sees"
says verse 7, and this is a healthy reminder. The very things that had
commended Saul (natural ability, physical appearance) are now seen as
detrimental. God "looks on the heart" and thus picks David. Ironically,
David is a handsome young man -- ruddy, with bright eyes and very
good-looking. But his heart was what mattered. I needed to remind myself
this morning that God is not interested in my giftedness but my
brokenness. Even whatever gifts I might possess are just that -- gifts
from Him. I must refuse to claim any credit for them, but seek to examine
my heart to see whether "the Spirit of the Lord is upon [me]" (verse 13).
And then go through the day reveling in the presence of the Lord!
Monday, September 13
Sorry, but I
couldn't resist! (Below: The famous "Jaws" beach on the Island of
Tonight we begin a week of nightly prayer for our church revival that
begins next Sunday. I am much encouraged that God still has a good work to
do in our little flock, and that His work has
to do with our numbers and everything to do with our obedience, as this
essay on the
Soldier by C. T. Studd reminds us.
Come, then, let us restore
the "Lost Chord" of Christianity - HEROISM - to the world, and the crown
of the world to Christ. Christ Himself asks thee, "Wilt thou be a Slacker
or a Militant?" To your knees, man! And to your Bible! Decide at
once! Don't hedge! Time flies! Cease your insults to God, quit
consulting flesh and blood. Stop your lame, lying, and cowardly excuses!
the nation got into this mess in the first place.
The church has lost its
influence with society because it sends mixed messages and because it
has no leg to stand upon when it strays from its Biblical moorings.
Barna, based upon his constant polling and research on the church, wrote
in 2002 that the church “is not among the top dozen influences these
days — a far cry from the way things used to be.”7
Because of our timidity, naiveté, and
poor understanding of our own faith, the church is often viewed as
inconsequential in American society today. Nowhere is this more apparent
than in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, where numerous polls indicate
that the majority of the people oppose same-sex marriages, yet the
concerns of the Christians are simply swept aside.
Yes, I fought in the
trenches in the culture wars. I served in a place that suffered
substantial losses. Yet, I know God reigns. If only His people would act
The debate over N. T. Wright and the so-called new perspective on Paul
continues unabated, as a DBO reader reminded me today. Here's a
good link that
will help you sort out this important issue, if you haven't done so
Yet another pro-war Congressman
A visibly emotional U.S.
Rep. Ken Lucas, who two years ago described a potential invasion of Iraq
as being in the "interest of America and all freedom-loving people
everywhere," Friday told a Northern Kentucky audience that his vote to
authorize that war was the one he most regretted during his three terms in
Darrell Dow on the "you are either
for us or against us" fallacy of statism and the New Right:
But my question is this:
Given that we live, or at least once lived, in a republic where power
rests on the consent of the governed, what does Wilson’s indictment say
about Christians who give their consent to the advancement of
One other item that Wilson fails to address is the Bush administration
infatuation with the idolatry of statism. That our security comes from the
regime, that you are "with us or against us" in the war on terror, that
there is "wonder working power" in state-funded "faith-based" social
programs are all lies propagated by the administration, and point to the
state rather than God as the author of every good and perfect gift.
Are Americans facing a "Westmoreland
Jacob Hornberger on the
flaws of interventionism:
After 9/11, President Bush, amidst tremendous
fanfare, declared his “war on terrorism.” Rather than simply going after
those individuals who had conspired to commit the 9/11 attacks, he invaded
both Afghanistan and Iraq, on the basis of the notion that the president
has the power to preemptively attack, without the constitutionally
required congressional declaration of war, any nation whose rulers might
have “harbored” terrorists or who might pose a terrorist threat to the
United States at some time in the future. In the process, the United
tens of thousands
of innocent people (that is, people who had nothing to do with 9/11 or
even the 1993 terrorist attack on the WTC), thereby producing even more
anger and hatred that will inevitably lead to more terrorist attacks and
ensuring that the process will continue. This policy also ensures
ever-increasing budgets for the Department of Defense (so-called) and
ever-increasing federal power
over the lives and fortunes of the American people.
From the mailbag:
Bro. Dave, I just wanted
you to know that I really appreciate your web-site! It is very refreshing
to know that there are others out there who are not afraid to speak the
truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth!
The articles on your web-site on everything from family based worship,
constitutional government, and the unvarnished record of GW Bush and the
Republicans have gotten me in some hot water as I have forwarded them to
friends/family members! I recently preached a series at our church on a
Biblical perspective of voting, and the info on your site was
indispensable! Thanks again, and God Bless!
dear brother, and keep up the good work, inasmuch as you know that your
labor is not in vain in the Lord.
Good day, friends. In my reading this morning I saw an interesting
equation: "Walk about Zion, and go all around her.... For this is God"
(Psalm 48:12, 14). To praise Zion, the dwelling place of God, is the same
as praising God Himself. Yesterday we paid a visit to a some dear friends
in western Virginia, a home school family of nine children with a church
that meets in their barn. As I looked at the orderly, peaceful home, I
couldn't help but admire the job mom and dad are doing. Their "Zion" is
indeed a blessing to visit, and surely "God is in her palaces" (Psalm
48:3) and "He is known as her refuge." On our trip to Ethiopia we hope to
visit with their eldest daughter and her husband who are missionaries in
Uganda. Thank you, Lord, for this family -- for their testimony to your
grace and love, for their willingness, like Lydia and Priscilla, to have a
church meet "in their home," and for their dedication to the Word of God,
even when it's counter-cultural. Surely "Great is the Lord and greatly to
be praised!" (Psalm 48:1).
Sunday, September 12
From today's Le Monde: How Bush, Putin, and Sharon
started World War IV:
Bush, Sharon paraissent donc participer au même combat. Ils font la même
analyse d'une idéologie - le fondamentalisme islamique - et d'une méthode
- le terrorisme. Ils voient, mais ils ne sont pas les seuls, dans le
fondamentalisme une nouvelle forme de totalitarisme, rappelant les
idéologies du XXe siècle.
Die Zeit believes Vietnam
will determine the outcome of the U.S. presidential election:
Der Vietnam-Krieg kostet -
auch dreißig Jahre nach seinem Ende - noch immer Menschenleben: Erst am
vergangenen Mittwoch sind sechs Vietnamesen durch die Explosion einer
alten Granate aus den Kämpfen mit den Amerikanern umgekommen, vier
erlitten Verletzungen. Vietnam ist immer noch ein aktuelles Thema - auch
und gerade in den USA. Dort könnte der Krieg die Glaubwürdigkeit und
vielleicht auch die Wahlchancen der zwei Hauptkandidaten im diesjährigen
Präsidentschaftswahlkampf, Bush und Kerry, entscheiden.
Don't you just
love airport security these days?
The government finds it
easier to lock down law-abiding citizens in hopes of catching the bad
guys in their net. Besides, the more hassles you have to endure, the
easier it is to convince the general public that the government is
actually doing something to protect you. The fact is few bad guys and a
lot of innocent Americans are made to suffer. Powerful lists designed to
deny freedoms isn’t the way to fight terrorism.
There are more plans in
the works beyond no-fly lists. Once in place, getting on the wrong list
can cost you your bank account, your driver’s license, your job, or even
your home, all because of a typo from a minimum wage, apathetic worker.
EXTRA! EXTRA! Harry Seabrook, erstwhile
editor of Little Geneva, to Join Army, Repents of Negativism Toward Bush!
Read all about it!
I retract everything bad
I’ve ever said about George W. Bush. His Christianity was not evident to
me, but then I read this from George Grant: "Over the course of several
years now, President Bush has developed a vibrant devotional life. Every
morning before dawn, even before he brings Laura a cup of coffee, he
reads from the Bible. Not surprisingly, he finds the Book of Psalms
particularly invigorating… He also regularly reads the daily selection
from My Utmost for His Highest, the classic devotional work by
Oswald Chambers." As long as he has morning devotions, it doesn’t really
matter if he thinks Jews and Muslims worship the God of the Bible. That
does it… I’m going to talk to an army recruiter.
Harry, before going off the deep end, consider
opening. It's perfect for a
Willow Creek/Saddleback fan like yourself.
Saturday, September 11
cure-all? Might be worth checking out as often as I am a target....
Guess who sends their kids to
Is the Greek term for "elder" age specific? I tend to think it is. I agree
The word 'elder' implies that the person in question is an older man. In
the Old Testament 'elders' had a significant role in leading the people of
Israel on the national, tribal, and city level. The New Testament carries
on this tradition. Who would question that the 'elders' of the Old
Testament are actually older men? Why should we assume differently in the
New Testament? After addressing the elders in I Peter 5, Peter tells the
younger, likewise ye younger submit yourselves unto the elder. Notice the
An elder is a mature man. There are many young men gifted in the things of
the Lord, gifted to teach, and perhaps even gifted to 'pastor' in the
Ephesians 4:11 sense. But if a man has not lived long enough to fulfill
the character requirements of I Timothy 3, then we should not see him as
an elder of the church. Let him use his gifts, yes.
you might see the chapter "Jesus and the Age 30 Transition" in my book
The Myth of
If you haven't read Mark Harrington's
Terror in the Womb: The Forgotten Victims of 9/11, please take a
moment and do so. Aren't you glad we have men like Mark writing such
essays? Eventually, given enough time, any movement becomes a reflection
of its leaders. Thank God for men who have a sharp, insightful leadership
role; and shame, shame on those jokers who create congregations that do
nothing but laugh a lot!
About to enjoy some scrumptious omelets, prepared by my darling. Tonight
we are getting all fancified and going to a nearby
bed-and-breakfast/restaurant for a ritzy supper. Meantime I've got the
grass to bush-hog and more work to do on the sheds. We hope to cut and
bale more hay as well. Because of the plentiful rains this summer we may
even get an unheard-of 4 cuttings this year in some fields. Saturday a day
of rest? Not for us!* Man, what a great life!
someone once say, "Six days shalt thou work"?
Happy Anniversary to ... us! Date: September 11, 1976. Place: Grace Bible
Church, Dallas, Texas. Officiating: Dr. Dwight Pentecost, Rev. Robert
Hakes. Honeymoon: Hawaii -- where else?
Friday, September 10
Thought for the day (C. H. Spurgeon):
By perseverance the snail
reached the ark.
In today's LRC
DiLorenzo expresses his disappointment with the politically-correct
battlefield guide he had at Gettysburg. Tom, I could have told you as
much. Next time, forego the propaganda, get out your walking shoes, and
hike the fateful mile from the Virginia monument to the stone wall, as
many of us do each time we visit that hallowed ground. Gives you a brand
new perspective on the kind of frontal assault you described in your blog
Like every American, I was horrified by the events of September 11, 2001.
But don't let anyone tell you we are more secure today than we were
pre-9/11. Lee Shelton deals in great specificity about the shape, style,
and agenda of
response to terrorism in part three of his series on the
backtracks after reading
my essay on his scare
Dr. Lyman says
learn Spanish and learn it muy pronto! Izzy, I realize the Real
Academia Española was established in 1713 to "fijar las voces y vocablos
de la lengua castellana en su mayor propiedad, elegancia, y pureza," but
would my Southern California Spanglish do? After all, I am able to surfear
the web and I can both deletear and dragear an icon!
Pafford reviews Pat Buchanan's penultimate book,
Republic, Not an Empire. A
While it is true that the
United States is a multiethnic country, it has not been and must never
become a multicultural country. To proclaim that this is a multicultural
country, that the basis of our culture is diversity, is meaningless.
That really means that there is no national culture, that the country is
just a conglomeration of separate, unassimilated groups of people. A
successful country, though, must be based on voluntarily accepted values
which unite individuals from diverse backgrounds. There must be
something which transcends the differences which separate us.
Lobe den Herrn! My Microsoft Word is actually working, folks. There have
been no more crashes while I have been working on my sabbatical project.
This is indeed a miracle from the Lord (at least in this layman's
estimation). While I'm on a break from writing, it's good to see the work
Buddy Hanson is doing at the
Law website. He notes:
For too long we have been
approaching life in a schizophrenic manner: professing to be Christians,
and proclaiming that God's Word is truth, yet living as though He has
nothing to say about everyday life! As a result civil government is not
fulfilling its God-appointed role of protecting citizens and prosecuting
law-breakers. By living in accordance with the four self-governing
spheres (Self, Family, Church, State) we will:
increase our personal liberty
amount of all taxes to below 10 percent (since to pay Caesar more than
God is to dishonor God), and
communities in which to raise our families.
This is a
great reminder, Buddy. The state -- the institution of human
government -- has been ordained by God to serve the individual, not the
other way around. As Buddy reminds us, we must begin with God as Creator
and as Law-Giver. Man is a divine creation designed to love and obey God,
and governments that lose sight of this great truth often force men to bow
to service to the state without regard for their obligation to God.
Thanks, Buddy, for all you are doing to remind us that when governments
fail to recognize man's allegiance to God they court revolution, and when
men fail to recognize their allegiance to God they court tyranny. It's as
simple as that!
San Gabriel Mission
loses its cross. (Gracias: Charles Porter.)
Hmm, a husband and wife team, both of whom have degrees in Secondary
Education, home schooling their kids?
Jeff Adams wants to know,
Who left whom?
I believe in the same
things today that I did when those ideals motivated me to join the U.S.
military to ‘serve my country.’ Those ideals are what motivated me to
vote for Reagan, questioningly vote for Bush senior, hold my nose voting
for Dole, and finally in 2000 to vote for Buchanan. I’ve come to the
point that I don’t think I can even vote for either of our U.S. senators
in Texas, who are both Republican, or for the Republican running
the congressional seat for my district. These people, along with Bush,
have turned their backs on the Constitution, the ideals and principles
that have historically defined America, and the citizens they are
suppose to represent.
I won’t vote for a
Democrat either, as I gave up on the Democratic Party long ago (they are
socialists in everything but name). I have to vote for what I believe
in, not vote for a Republican because I fear the Democrats more. There’s
no real difference between the two parties any more. It’s like a choice
between sticking my hand in a jar full of rattlesnakes or a jar full of
cottonmouths. Either way, my hand is going into a jar full of poisonous
snakes, and I’m sure to get bitten.
To borrow from Ronald
Reagan, I didn’t leave the Republican Party, the Republican Party left
me. I’m voting conservative/traditionalist, and if that means the
Constitution Party, so be it. George Bush has shown his true colors and
they are anything but conservative. I’m not throwing away my vote; Bush
has thrown my vote away. What’s the problem here? It’s not me folks,
The credo of
Chuck Baldwin says it about as well as it can be said:
James Bovard and Bob Barr
are correct: America has been betrayed by President George W. Bush! Mr.
Bush has proved himself unfaithful to virtually every precept of
conservative, constitutional principles. As such, a John Kerry presidency
would be no worse. In fact, it might even be better as conservatives would
suddenly have their blinders removed and might actually start acting like
Of course, the best alternative would be to elect a true constitutional
conservative as President. And the only such candidate for this year's
election who meets that criteria is Michael Peroutka of the Constitution
Party. It is for the above reasons and more that I was happy to accept
Michael's invitation to be his Vice Presidential running mate.
If you choose to vote for G.W. Bush, go ahead, but please don't delude
yourself into thinking that by doing so you are voting for something
dramatically different from that of the Democratic candidate, because you
aren't. You are merely voting to continue the failed and fallacious
policies of the liberal establishment which controls both major parties.
The Bush Betrayal.
Thursday, September 9
I have a lot of weaknesses but ingratitude isn't one of them. I want to
thank my good friends over at the
website for their faithfulness in reposting so many of my essays. If I
get over 10,000 hits in a day, it is because of websites like Dixienet and
Vision Forum and Covenant News and Dixie Daily News and many others. A
heartfelt "thank you" to each and every one. May the Lord bless us as we
seek to honor Him and Him alone in all we do!
Tonight I received the wonderful news that the Peroutka/Baldwin ticket
will be third on the Virginia ballot. Thanks be to God! And thanks be to
God for the hard work of Mitch Turner and the rest of the Virginia
Constitution Party. This is a great note upon which to end a very busy
day. This is how good God is -- our faithful covenant God. O how I long
and pray, with tears at times, for the fulfillment of Joel 2:25-26 in
terms of our nation: "I will restore to you the years that the locust has
eaten...and ye shall eat in plenty, and be satisfied, and praise the name
of the Lord your God, that hath dealt wondrously with you." Fortunately,
America is slowly waking up. We are again recognizing the dangers of an
over-governed idolatrous society. But our pursuit of God is possible only
because He is forever pursuing us. O may we respond this November 2 in
humbleness, righteousness, trust, and hope!
SIM Friendship Day in
Charlotte, NC a week from this Saturday. A great opportunity to learn
about mission work in East Africa. (My wife's family served with SIM in
The smells emanating from the kitchen inform me that my precious wife of
28 years come this Saturday has been baking cinnamon rolls again. So if
you'll excuse me....
I believe the Christian answer to our problems is to recognize first that
God is sovereign and that all things happen either with His direction or
with His permission. But I also hold with deepest conviction that God has
created us and that we have a responsibility before Him to make wise
choices based on His character and His Word. Good people may certainly
disagree, but it seems to me that
a thinking Christian should always encourage the de-escalation of war and
discourage the resort to humanistic political means of consolidating the
state's existence. Thus, while I am encouraged by the rise in visibility
of Michael Peroutka, Chuck Baldwin, and the Constitution Party, I remain
very concerned about the coterie who surround the president with
incompetent sycophants, seeking to reinforce their imperialistic
by leaning not only on the government but also on the churches. With only
eight weeks to go before the general election it is truly sad to see those
who preach power politics discuss nations and peoples as though they were
chessmen to be manipulated. The current lack of understanding of
constitutional principles in our nation makes it virtually impossible for
individuals such as Michael and Chuck to apply Christian morality to the
struggle. But they will keep trying, and so will this writer. The main
battleground will remain, not the arena of politics, but the hearts and
minds of the Christian populace, and there, I can assure you, our efforts
will be incessant. May the Lord bless you, each one, this day.
As I am doing a great deal of writing these days, I am reminded of what
Thomas Jefferson once called "drudging
at the writing table."
This comes as
surprise. None at all.
Wednesday, September 8
My good friends at Trinity Baptist Church in Wake Forest, NC are holding a
father-son campout at the fabulous Brown farm October 8-10. For more
information, including a registration form, please go
Taking a break from writing, I found this excellent
link from Dr. Patrick Johnson. Folks, don't be afraid to be a
Amen and amen! Was finally able to download successfully Windows XP onto
my sorry old pooter, after five tries! The first three times I was like
Pickett in the movie: "Come on, you can do it, that's the style, Lo!" The
fourth time I was saying, "What's happened to my boys?" The last time,
resigned to whatever outcome God had planned for me, I was like Lee:
"God's will." And it worked! Now I can hopefully get on with my sabbatical
writing project without the complicated world of cybernetics spoiling
things for this computer ignoramus.
One of my Ph.D. students recently asked me how he could keep up with his
languages, both biblical and modern. The best way I know, indeed the
only way, is simply by reading. I try to read at least Greek, German,
and French every day. Last night it was a wonderful short story called
La creation de la femme. Try reading until the language in question
becomes second nature to you. When I was a doctoral student in Basel, it
was just expected of us that we had a good reading knowledge of the
languages. So if in my dissertation I quoted Berkhof, I quoted him in
Dutch (of course). Or Barth in German. Or Cullmann in French. Of course,
the Greek and Hebrew texts were always used, never translations, unless we
provided our own. So the key to mastering a foreign language? Simple.
Learn to love it -- and then read it every chance you get. Viel Spass!
BBC has some great links on
foreign languages, from German to French to Italian. You can easily learn
a foreign language -- correct pronunciation included -- on the web! Also,
if you want to check your knowledge of, say, German, you can always take
an online test, like
this one. Try it out, you German speakers!)
A little sore but none the worse for wear. The Yellow Fever was the most
painful but also the most necessary shot. The seminary email is down so it
may be a while before I can answer your letters.
Off to get our shots for Africa!
Scott Brown is absolutely right:
The separation of children
from their parents in the church, a practice that governs modern church
life, is more a product of our godless culture than it is Biblical
Christianity. The church has departed from its heritage.
There is no indication
from scripture that children were ever removed from the meetings
designed for preaching, scripture reading, prayer and worship. But, in
our culture, it is automatic and comprehensive.
Chuck Baldwin on what is perhaps the most important Congressional
of the century.
This means, that the
federal judiciary would be prohibited from interfering with any
expression of religious faith by any elected local, state, or federal
official. In other words, federal judges could not prevent the Ten
Commandments from being displayed in public buildings or Nativity Scenes
from appearing on court house lawns or "under God" from being recited in
the Pledge of Allegiance or prayers being spoken in public schools, etc.
This bill would limit the jurisdiction of the federal courts in these
The new "old" siding on the woodshed makes it look at least 100 years old.
Maybe we should call it the wood "mansion"; it is huge. With five wood
burning fire places in the Hall we'll need all the firewood we can get
come winter (my wife loves wood fires). Should keep the chain saw
humming this fall. Now if we can only get enough old wood for the horse
barn -- er, horse mansion -- we are building. At least the pasture
is done, and it looks pretty neat. Country living is great for many
reasons: peace and quiet, stewardship of the land, animal care,
self-sufficiency (no, that's not a dirty word for a Christian; see the
Greek of Phil. 4:11). But the real reason to love country living is
the machinery! Man, to have a Massie Ferguson to help with the farm work.
Now that's the real deal!
Tuesday, September 7
Michael Moore is
back in the
news. My take on Fahrenheit 9/11?
I came away from the movie
thinking that the greatest danger we Christians face in this era is from
ourselves, not the opposition – liberal or conservative. We have
abandoned our constitutional savvy and, by default, have lost our
ability to be the salt of the earth in terms of politics. Michael Moore
is no more biased than any other film-maker. He has the right, as does
every citizen, to engage in political and other human activities. He
also has the right to agitate for change like everyone else. The sad
thing is, Christians should be the ones exposing fraud and deception
wherever it is to be found, and yet it takes a Bush-w left-winger
to do it when it comes to our warmongering.
For more go
Bob Barr publishes his latest
Perhaps the clearest
evidence of how detached this administration is from the constitutional
underpinnings that used to hold presidents at arm’s
from near-absolute power is a quote unearthed by Bovard and included in
the closing chapter of The Bush Betrayal. In April of this year, at
a news conference, Bush described himself as “the ultimate decision-maker
for this country.” As Bovard correctly notes, of course, Bush is at most
the decision-maker for the executive branch of the government; the people
are the ultimate decision-makers for America. Our Founding Fathers knew
that. Generations of Americans understood that. Previous presidents
recognized that. Sadly, that constitutionally based and historically sound
perspective, which is the cornerstone of what America should stand for,
appears not to be a component of the current administration’s thinking.
And that is a betrayal.
one of The Bush Betrayal
Have you checked the
James Boice, a fellow Basel grad, has written one of the most readable
introductions to Reformed Theology on the web. Read it
A friend recently asked me if there is any really big surf in Hawaii
The answer is basically no. The North Shore only breaks in the winter,
but, as you can see, there is still some very good surf to be had in the
summer. Shown on the right is the "bowl" at Ala Moana (near Honolulu) on
the South Shore of Oahu. The break at Ala Moana is one of the hollowest
you'll ever see. Short ride, but very good. You have to drop in real fast,
though. As teens we used to surf it, then paddle in for "church"
(the Waikiki Beach Chaplaincy held a service on the beach), then paddle
out again. (Needless to say, that was during my Jesus Freak days -- long
hair and Mariachi sandals to boot.)
Planning a trip to
When I find the
ark, I'll let you know.
Seeker-sensitive or seeker-centered? My friend from California Greg Koukl
tidal wave sweeping American churches.
Quote of the day
The Church which is married
to the Spirit of the Age will be a widow in the next.
For readers in the UK, I just stumbled across the LogosWord "webstore"
that offers many of my books for sale, some at a discounted price. Nice
Monday, September 6
They're coming for your sons and daughters. Even the
recognizes the changing role of women in the U.S. armed services.
response is being formulated upon the solid Reformation base of a
fully authoritative Scripture.
New definition of "heavy"
infantry. Mmmm, I can taste that bratwurst already.
Mr. Charles Porter writes:
Hope that your weekend went fine and this letter finds
you in good spirits. I am halfway through "Why I
stopped listening to Rush" and am want to thank you
for putting into words the way that I feel and the way
thousands of others Christian conservatives feel about
being abandoned by the Republican Party. Wanted to
pass along the last rhetoric from Jerry Falwell. Some
say that Zell Miller sold out his own party by
speaking at the GOP convention. I had a friend that
reminded me that Dick Cheney voted against just about
all the same defense programs that Miller accused
Kerry of going against. Such is life of the
Republicrats. God speed to you and your family.
"As for the overall state of the Republican Party, I
can report that the GOP platform is very reflective of
our conservative ideals. I was able to meet with
several party officials, including Senate Majority
Leader William Frist, who were actively involved in
creating and guarding the platform. I am happy to
report that the platform remains pro-life and
Charles. As usual, you are right about the pseudo-conservatism of the
John MacArthur has some pearls on
Scripture speaks with
absolute, unmistakable clarity on these vital issues: (1) Sinners are
utterly helpless to redeem themselves or to contribute anything
meritorious toward their own salvation (Rom 8:7-8). (2) God is sovereign
in the exercise of His saving Will (Eph 1:4-5). (3) Christ died as a
substitute who bore the full weight of God's wrath on behalf of His
people, and his atoning work is efficacious for their salvation (Isa.
53:5). (4) God's saving purpose cannot be thwarted (John 6:37), meaning
none of Christ's true sheep will ever be lost (John 10:27-29). That is
because (5) God assures the perseverance of His elect (Jude 24; Phil
1:6; 1 Peter 1:5).
Those are the five points
of Calvinism. I believe them not because of their historical pedigree,
but because that is what Scripture teaches.
Having taught in South Korea numerous times and been exposed to
church-state relations there, I really want to read this
The latest blogging
One of my favorites:
Don’t try to please an
audience, and don’t post simply because you feel like you ought to –
only post when you have something to say.
More wisdom from my friend
Unless America wakes up
soon it will be too late. Either we once again embrace the Christian
value system and recognize our dependence upon God or we are doomed. I
repeat: God is the author of freedom. As such, our destiny for good or
ill is in His hands. On the one hand that reality is a reassuring
promise. On the other hand it is an ominous warning.
The Parable of the Constitutionalist and the Republican:
Also He spoke this parable
to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous and despised
others: "Two men went up to church to pray, one a Constitutionalist and
the other a Republican. The Constitutionalist stood and prayed thus within
himself, 'God, I thank You that I am not like other men -- welfare
recipients, public schoolers, youth group advocates, or even as this
Republican. I fast twice a week, I give tithes of all that I have, I home
educate my children, and I am the patriarch of my family.' And the
Republican, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to
heaven, but beat his breast, saying, 'God, be merciful to me, the sinner
that I am!' I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather
than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he
who humbles himself will be exalted."
Butler Shaffer has the
diagnosis but the wrong treatment. Statism is the status quo in our
society today; on this we can agree. But to conclude that "Our choice, as
always, is to look within our own souls, and listen for those inner voices
that continue to speak to us," is to play into the hands of our own flesh,
which the Scripture condemns as wicked beyond measure. Better to look unto
Jesus and to the Bible, which does not merely contain the Word of
God (so the liberal theologians) or become the Word of God (so the
neo-orthodox) but is the very Word of Almighty God written and
Sunday, September 5
Took the WayBack Machine last night and had a blast from the past,
listening to a 1940s radio program replete with Bing, swing, and Judy --
not to mention the ubiquitous Chesterfield commercials. As I sat in my
son's old farm house I tried to imagine the family that lived there last
century as perhaps they listened to that very broadcast live.
reading this morning (from James 1:12-27) I was reminded of our desire to
minister in Ethiopia this fall as I contemplated the two nouns the author
uses in verse 17: "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above."
The first noun for gift (dosis) refers to the act or impulse of
giving; the second (dorema) to what has been given. James is
emphasizing not only that what we give was God's in the first place
(all we have is His to do with as He pleases; we are simply managers or
stewards of His possessions), but that the very desire to give, the
eagerness and willingness to give, comes from God. We can take credit, in
other words, for neither the impulse nor the act! It is all "of His own
will" (v. 18). This point, of course, is missed in such modern
"translations" as the NIV: "Every good and perfect gift," which doesn't
even translate the first "gift" or the second "every"!
Saturday, September 4
Mowed five acres in Carolina; brought back to the farm a trailer load of
old wood for the woodshed siding; did a LOT of galloping uphill on Cody;
just had a superb supper of home-grown collards and corn on the cob; am
tired to the bone. Tonight am reading Miroslav Volf's interview with
Jurgen Moltmann, who was drafted into the Wehrmacht in 1943. A fascinating
story! From a disciple of statism to a leading liberation theologian -- in
one lifetime. For my doctoral orals in Basel I was required to read some
of Moltmann's works and be familiar with his "theology of hope"; he was
"in" at the time and a guest lecturer on campus just about everywhere.
Even heard him lecture at our university. He fit right in; most of the
profs in our "practical theology" department were avowed Marxists. Well,
time to head for my son's farm to make pop corn and READ!
From the mailbag comes this heart-warming letter:
I want to thank you.
You ask for what? Well...I am a frustrated Republican. One day I was
toying around on the internet ... and I also came across your
website. That is when I read about the Constitution Party. I
thought...hmmm?!! I continued to read and discovered that perhaps
this Republican needs to explore the Constitution Party a bit deeper.
It seems to be more to what I am about politically. I may have found
a home. I have not made the move yet. I am in the process of finding
out what party offices or contacts are in my county.
I have told family
members and friends what I have found out about the party and they are
cautiously curious. I also have the top website in my county with a
political page. I will make sure that there appears information on
the Constitution Party. Interesting isn't it? We never know the
impact we make on others and the rest of the world.
I just thought that it
was important to let you know that you may have reached out and made a
Charley Reese ably describes the beautiful manhood of
who said of himself, "I am nothing but a poor sinner, trusting in Christ
alone for salvation." Our family celebrates
Lee's birthday annually.
Darrell Dow on
Teddy Roosevelt once said of his
countrymen that, “We are a people, not a polyglot boarding house.”
Decades of mass immigration has changed the ethnic composition of the
country. But the shift to a majority non-white population is only one
revolution being foisted on the country by its ruling class.
According to a recent study at the
University of Chicago,
America’s Protestant majority will disappear in the next year. According
to the survey, the Protestant population has shrunk from 63% in 1993 to
just 52% in 2002.
The survey also found that the percentage of Americans claiming no
religion has risen from 5.1% in 1972 to 13.8% in 2002. Over the same
period, American’s claiming a non-Christian or non-Jewish religion rose
from 1.9% to 6.9%.
The decline of Protestantism leads to the sort of blasphemy that took
place at the Republican National Convention this week.
A Muslim Imam opened the convention in prayer. This decision by Karl
Rove, or whoever is responsible, is nothing less than the advancement of
idolatry, pure and simple.
Like the emperors of ancient Rome, our leaders bless all religions as
long as none claim to corner the market on truth.
Christians should ask themselves if it worse for pagans to advance
idolatry or Christians to promote idolatry.
them catacombs, boys. It won't be much longer....
does happy mommy make. (Did you get it, guys?)
Psalm 47: God is the "Ruler of the Earth," the "LORD Most High," a "great
King over all the earth." He "reigns over the nations," because all other
kings have but derived authority. Only one King is absolute in
King But King Jesus!
Friday, September 3
Latest humor from
Gerhard Schröder sitzt an
seinem Schreibtisch, vor sich eine völlig in Tränen aufgelöste Doris Köpf.
Schröder zu Doris: "Das hat wirklich nichts mit dir zu tun. Aber ich muß
bis zur nächsten Wahl unbedingt einen Mann heiraten."
Hmm, Punks for Bush. Is
that anything like "Bucks for Lolos," as we used to say in Hawaii?
This is a great
editorial (sorry, French only). The money quote:
L'Irak est cité en passant,
comme un simple épisode d'une guerre globale. "Nous frappons les
terroristes à l'étranger pour ne pas avoir à les affronter chez nous",
dit George Bush. Telle est la véritable justification de la guerre en Irak.
Cela fait longtemps qu'il n'est plus question de la présence d'armes de
destruction massive dans ce pays, motif officiel du déclenchement des
Self-esteem and the gospel of success: Yet
heresy evangelicals tolerate for the sake of "unity."
Jim Rudd: Have we forgotten that
murder is still a capital
Peroutka is being impeccably logical again (from an email):
The 1996 GOP Platform
called for the abolition of the Federal Department of Education which,
with Mr. Bush's approval, now spends more than $60 billion annually. The
2000 GOP Platform said, in part:
"We recognize that
under the American Constitutional system, education is a state, local
and family responsibility, not a federal organization (emphasis
mine)….The Republican Congress rightly opposed attempts by the
Department of Education to establish federal testing that would set the
stage for a national curriculum."
In an interview on Pat
Robertson's "700 Club" TV show on March 22, 2001, House Majority Whip
Tom DeLay (R-Tex.) said, when the subject was raised: "Well, to be
honest, I'm one of those guys who can't find education in the
Constitution as a function of the Federal Government."
Fast-forward to the recent
GOP Convention in New York City. In his remarks to this gathering,
Secretary Of Education Rod Paige praised our country as being, among
other things, "defined by our founders" --- who, of course, authorized
no role for the Federal Government in education. He noted that "no
nation can sustain its greatness unless it educates its citizens." No
"nation," of course, "educates" anybody because no "nation" has any
The Establishment Clause
These Prairie Muffin
sites are too cute! Look what you've started, Carmon!
Are you ready to puke yet? Bush on Larry King: "I
think our society is great because people are able to live their
lifestyles, you know, as they choose or as they're oriented."
Cheney at a campaign stop in Davenport, Iowa:
"My general view is that freedom means freedom for everybody. People
ought to be free to enter into any kind of relationship they want to."
Don't you love our conservative, pro-sodomy leaders?
John Leone does more than defend our biblical and constitutional
is a treasure trove of opinionated but always readable essays on
still oozing from the pores of compromisers.
Yes, Harry, I did like your
prattle about the silly convention in NYC, and, yes, I will be praying for
you and your family in the eye of the storm. Maybe I'll be able to attend
the Virginia LOS meeting in beautiful Lexington where you're speaking. Be
good to finally meet you in person (and visit the Lee Chapel again).
Off to the seminary this morning for meetings with my Ph.D. students. It's
an hour and five minute drive from Rosewood Farm, mostly on curving
country roads that take me back a century. The ante-bellum homes you
encounter on the way make it worth the drive. The only traffic is in Wake
Forest, which once was a humble village but now is a mega-city the likes
of Raleigh (we call it Raleigh North). So you think I have an aversion to
Farm Update: The weather couldn't be better for working outdoors. Got much
of the horse pasture fencing done, and started the siding on the woodshed
(at least we're collecting our materials for that project). Time to work
on my sabbatical project. (Afternoons are my time for writing.) A pastor
from Nebraska and his wife and two precious children are staying with us
at Bradford Hall for a couple of days. Right now they're enjoying some of
our reenacting videos. Today is their daughter's fourth birthday. Happy
Birthday, sweet Sarah!
My, my, how we love
the first twins:
A Muslim imam gave the invocation to open the Republican convention this
week. Incrementalist Christians believe this will move us a step closer
our nation in covenant with God. "Vote for Bush!" shouts Candy Sandlin.
So far, not a single Bible passage from any of the primetime speakers.
They used to at least pretend. Last night, Jenna Bush said to Barbara
sitting up in the balcony, "Granny, we love you dearly, but you’re just
not very hip. She thinks ‘Sex in the City’ is something married people
do, but never talk about." I tell you, it was a knee-slapper for the
evangelicals in the house. "One step closer to covenant with God," they
were thinking. The important thing, they all agree, is to stay away from
losers like Peroutka. God hates losers.
When I read Carmon Friedrich's
political diatribe this morning I thought immediately of Isaiah 66:2:
"But to this one I will look, to him who is humble and contrite of spirit,
and who trembles at My Word." I know of only one presidential candidate of
whom this can be said, and it isn't John or George. I would suggest that
the Peroutka campaign is more than just another interesting example of
third party politics. What we find here is a model from which every
Christian can learn something profound about humble and contrite
spirituality, and which indeed provides the basic outlines of how the
Spirit of God moves in true revival on the level of the church and even in
nations, not to mention in one's personal walk with God. Sister Carmon and
brother Steve, if only even a few Christians would begin to practice the
holiness and love of God on a moment by moment basis as you are seeking to
do, I believe the Holy Spirit would move in a mighty way throughout the
church. God bless you for your stand, not for Michael Peroutka, but for
the Word of God.
The Constitution Party is,
in fact, the true "Republicans." They are the only party which is
completely pro-life, anti-homosexual rights, pro-American sovereignty,
anti-globalist, anti-free trade, anti-deindustrialization,
anti-unchecked immigration, pro-second amendment, against the constantly
increasing expansion of unlawful police laws, in favor of a strong
national defense, and opposed to unconstitutional interventionism.
The fog walks through the valley while the sun nods over the pines. Psalm
31:8 reminds me "You have set my feet in a wide place." "How great is Your
goodness" (v. 19), so "love the LORD, all you His saints!" (v. 23). Above
all, "In You, O LORD, I put my trust" this very day, come what may (v. 1).
In Thee, O Lord, I put
I call upon Thy Name;
O save me in Thy righteousness,
Nor let me suffer shame.
Bow down Thine ear to
And swift deliverance send;
Be Thou to me a rock of strength,
A fortress to defend.
Since Thou my Rock
and Fortress art,
My Leader be, and Guide;
From all temptation rescue me,
Thou dost my strength abide.
To Thee my spirit I
Redemption is with Thee,
O Thou Jehovah, God of truth,
Who hast delivered me.
I hate all those that
love the false,
My trust is in the Lord;
I will be glad, and joyfully
Thy mercy will record.
For mine affliction
Thou hast seen,
And known my many woes;
Thou hast not let me be enslaved,
But freed me from my foes.
Show mercy, Lord, to
And send my soul relief;
My life is spent with bitterness,
My strength consumed with grief.
My life has aged
grown with woe,
With sighs my years decay;
Mine eye is worn for very grief:
I pine and waste away.
My foes have made me
My state my neighbors see;
My friends, appalled at mine approach,
Turn them about and flee.
For I have heard defaming
And marked the terror rife,
When all in league deliberate
To take away my life.
But, Lord, in Thee is
all my trust,
Thou art my God, I cried;
My life, my times are in Thy hand,
I in Thy strength abide.
Wednesday, September 1
Off to work on the woodshed. I leave you with
Nothing is inherently wrong
with flying a flag, of course, and in fact there can be great merit in it.
Yet it seems that some of the motivation behind the post-September 11
fervor is unqualified allegiance to a particular civil government, along
with a kind of wounded pride. In contrast to this nationalism, a biblical
patriotism recognizes that the civil government should not occupy center
stage in society, and that a disaster requires a response from the church,
families, and individuals. Loyalty to an authority does not mean
unquestioning approval of that authority's decisions--patriotism is
sometimes critical if the biblical principles that made this country great
are compromised. Yet, consistent with the idolatry of statism, our
response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 has been to expand
and reinforce the role of the state. Rather than national repentance,
renewed evangelistic efforts, and a reining in of the state in its
overseas interventionism, our response has been to grant the state even
greater access to our personal affairs, and to renew the international
crusade for democracy.
Notice how George tries to compare himself with Ronnie. Nice try. Bush is
a Harding, not a
The epistemological flaw with
Having money problems? Benny Hinn's
later this month, will change all that!
BBN booted Alistair Begg and now has re-booted John MacArthur (for
preaching election, no less!). Maybe it's time to boot BBN? By the way,
accusing MacArthur of being a Hyper-Calvinist
hardly makes him one. He's probably a 4.258927987011-er, wouldn't
This guy is some kinda
Had an interesting discussion at church the other day about taxes that are
used for ungodly and unconstitutional expenditures such as the
for the Arts. When laws are out of sync with people's values, they
will try to find a way around them. Basically, few of us believe in a
moral code that would justify forcing people to give up what they have
earned to finance purposes they do not approve. Yet that is exactly what
is happening in our society. Only the fear of punishment, not a sense of
justice or morality, will lead people to obey our current tax laws. At the
bottom of the bottom line is the real issue: the illegality of direct
taxation, as my son pointed out in our conversation at church. And there
party that will deal with this issue squarely.
In Article I, Section 9,
the original document made clear that "no Capitation, or other direct
Tax shall be laid, unless in Proportion to the Census of Enumeration
herein before directed to be taken." It is moreover established that "No
Tax or Duty shall be laid on Articles exported from any State."
Since 1913, our
Constitutional rights to life, liberty, and property have been abridged
and diminished by the imposition on each of us of Federal income,
payroll, and estate taxes. This is an unconstitutional Federal
assumption of direct taxing authority.
The Internal Revenue
Service is the enforcement arm of the Federal government's present
unjust tax system. Citizens, both in groups and as individuals, have
repeatedly sought responses from the IRS bureaucracy as to the basis for
the agency's tax policies and procedures. No answers have been
forthcoming although a responsible government must be answerable to the
people and has a duty to those it is supposed to serve.
We propose legislation to
abolish the Internal Revenue Service, and will veto any authorization,
appropriation, or continuing resolution which contains any funding
whatsoever for that illicit and unconstitutional agency. We are opposed
to the flat-rate tax, national sales tax, and value added tax proposals
that are being promoted as an improvement to the current tax system. The
Sixteenth Amendment does not provide authority for an un-apportioned
unrepentant dude who wasn't educated at the Mr. Good Guy Theological
Seminary, and that's for sure!
When I was working on the International Standard Version New Testament, I
pondered long and hard on how to translate the Greek word poiema in
Ephesians 2:10. We decided on "masterpiece." The word literally refers to
anything that has been "made" (it comes from the common Greek verb
poieo), but in this context seems to indicate a handiwork, a
masterpiece. God's church is His "masterpiece," the crown of His new
creation, just as man is the crown of the old. The point is, since God did
all the work, He gets all the credit. All boasting is excluded, as is all
pride and self-congratulation. If you have accomplished anything, my dear
friend (and some of you have accomplished a lot!), it is only because God
has been at work in a weak but yielded vessel. This "treasure" we
have is in a
pot of clay so that the surpassing greatness of the power might be of
God, and not of us. Don't forget the "forgotten" verse that comes right
after Ephesians 2:8-9!
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