Monday, June 30
In analyzing the gluten-free fad, homeschool activist Kevin Swanson poked fun at those that cut out gluten without even understanding what gluten is or conducting extensive research tests to determine whether or not they might have a biological sensitivity to the substance. Does he intend to make similar observations of what goes on in assorted churches across the varying swaths of Christendom? Don’t just as many sitting out in the pews simply go along with a particular theological application because they have been told to do so by someone in the pulpit without coming to these conclusions on their own through their individual process of ratiocination? In a podcast just the other day, this same minister attempted to work listeners into a panic not to let their children go to the library over a pro-homosexual book that might be on the shelves even though a good library offers works on a wide array of topics from a variety of perspectives. Wouldn’t the wiser, more responsible counsel have simply been to urge parents to exercise caution and discernment rather than to impose a blanket prohibition for those that want to be considered upstanding homeschool families?
Hillary Clinton remarked that, as laboratories of democracy, states should be able to decide the legalization of recreational drugs on their own. Does she intend to make a similar policy pronouncement regarding gay marriage and decry the federal judicial intervention jamming this unnatural cohabitational arrangement down the throats of jurisdictions not wanting to approve it?
On an episode of Issues Etc defending marriage, it was said that there is nothing wrong in getting married and not going to college or getting a big important job beforehand. Shouldn’t it have also been emphasized that, if that is the path you decide to take, be prepared to paddle it yourself and not expect everyone else to float your boat financially. Not my kids, not my financial duty no matter how allegedly large my apparently invisible pile of single person money.
Each of these spokesmen for the secularist perspective (though Williams made a fuss over his Episcopalianism which has been one of contemporary Christianity's most spineless forms) insinuated that one's position regarding origins somehow represents an intellectual deficiency if one does not enthusiastically embrace Darwinism. Perhaps we should take a moment to examine how this might impact a politician's political philosophy.
Often ultrasecularists assure we dimwitted rubes that religion has no bearing on the nuts and bolts issues voters really care about as the nation edges closer to financial ruination and social collapse. These days, one is as likely to hear this from certain varieties of grassroots conservatism as you are from ACLU types.
Even if evolution was true, what bearing does Rick Perry, Michelle Eichmann, or Sarah Patin believing the world was created six thousand years ago have on the proverbial price of tea in China? Given the worthlessness of the US dollar, such an example is no longer as merely rhetorical as it once was.
On the national level, it's not like a singular figure would be able to reverse the inertia of an entrenched technocratic bureaucracy steeped in scientism.
If a more creationist approach to science held sway in the jurisdictions where the aforementioned politicians enjoy a constituency, who are elites to criticize the prevailing conceptual framework?
After all, aren't these the same multiculturalists that dare anyone to criticize the adherents of a particular unmentioned religion who have a penchant for flying jetliners into skyscrapers and to strap sticks of dynamite to their chests.
Those thinking, to paraphrase Bernard Goldberg, that is is ignorant to believe that dinosaurs and human beings might have shared the earth at the same time apparently also believe that how the world came into existence impacts other areas of existence. That is a notion that they share with the Christian that actually just comes at the question from the opposite direction.
Since those wanting to shut God out or at least hold Him at bay in one's approach to one of life's most fundamental questions on what is constantly tauted as cable's most highly rated news program, perhaps we should examine these assumptions a little more closely.
Those holding to evolution believe everything is in a constant state of flux and change. There are no unaltering realities or lasting principles.
For example, Congress shall make no law abridging the free exercise of religion or speech, or the right to bear arms shall not be infringed. Those might have been alright in the 1700's, but those provisions aren't meant for today since we have progressed so far beyond them, the evolutionary collectivist would argue.
Rights are not something we are endowed with by our Creator as individuals made in his image. Rather these protections are statutory provisions that can be extended and contracted for the benefit of the elite ruling any given society.
The contrasting perspective holds that every detail in the opening chapters of the Book of Genesis are to be taken literally. Such an assumption produces a number of worldview implications.
For example, the theist holding to the Genesis account generally believes that the individual is created in the image of God. This doctrine is taught in Genesis 1:26.
As such, the individual possesses an innate dignity and worth. The person is not some random conglomeration of cells to be manipulated, reconfigured, and even obliterated for no valid reason. Thus, those principles viewed as outdated and obsolete are often the only things that prevent us from being obliterated by those so deluded that they can remake the entire world in their own warped image.
By Frederick Meekins
Friday, June 27
Radical homeschooler Kevin Swanson said that, because public libraries stock books sympathetic to the homosexual agenda, he likely will not allow his children to visit such facilities. So given the increasing number of pastors that can’t seem to keep their hands off minors below the age of consent, does that mean Christians should stop attending church?
Thursday, June 26
Interesting. Apparently the White House invites to receptions those that flout Southern Baptist beliefs as in the case of a pastor that altered his congregations stance on homosexuality in support of his morally deficient son but the White House persecutes those challenging the assumptions of Islam in the case of the filmmaker that administration propagandists went out of their way to blame for the Benghazi uprising and kept him in prison as long as possible on unrelated charges.
If you are going to bore someone a new one if they say they accepted Christ as Lord and Savior instead of expressing the verbal formulation in an approved predestinarian manner, don’t pitch a fit or staid there dumbfounded when hardly anyone comes back to your church.
Even Darwin himself is alleged to have relented that his theory would ultimately be proven or discarded on the basis of such geological evidence.
For well over a century now, those wanting to extol what passes for education over and above commonsense have attempted to elaborate any number of conceptual bypasses around the 800 pound subhuman hominid in the room.
An article in the May 2011 edition of Discover Magazine makes such an attempt by positioning that we ourselves are the transitional forms or at least what's left over of them in terms of primate evolution.
No longer are we to think of ourselves in terms of being exclusively modern homo sapiens. Rather we are to view ourselves as the genetic composites of previous ancestors such as Neanderthals and those other creatures reminiscent of Chaka from Land of the Lost.
This theory is put forward as an attempt to silence the critics of naturalistic evolution.
Yet the hypothesis ends up raising a number of questions that reveal just what one has to ignore and overlook in order to accept this particular narrative's attempt to account for the origins of man.
Foremost, if other higher order hominids were eventually wiped out or disappeared because they interbred increasingly with what we would recognize as human beings, why wouldn't these alleged ancestors we are more reluctant to embrace as part of our own kind, if they are able to produce a fecund offspring as a result of copulation through mating, be considered fellow human beings?
For is not the history of Anthropology literally littered with the corpses of people thought to be of the status of less than fully human? I recall Ken Ham one time claiming that at one point in the 1800's Australian Aborigines were harvested as research specimens.
Even when these remains are uncovered as part of legitimate research and excavation, it must be asked if a number of these conclusions arrived at are really inherent to the evidence or are active imaginations reading back into the data what these researchers instead intensely want to see.
For if Neanderthals could interbreed with run of the mill human beings to the point where certain evolutionary theorists are insisting that we ourselves are partially Neanderthal, aren't Neanderthals just anther racial or ethnic group?
Researcher Jack Cuozzo hypothesized in “Buried Alive:The Startling Truth About Neanderthal Man” that Neanderthals may have been the extremely aged or the diseased suffering from degenerative bone conditions similar to arthritis. For daring to proffer such a conjecture foremost proponents of inquiry and knowledge resorted to intimidation and threats of violence for presenting such an unconventional perspective.
By downplaying distinctions between human beings and what were at one time categorized as species preceding us along the chain of primatology obviously nothing more than glorified apes, radical evolutionists hope to further erode the preconceived boundaries between the species for the purposes of biological manipulative amalgamation.
Several years ago, I posted a column about Darwinistic propaganda speculating that in prehistoric times that the genetic boundaries might not have been as set in stone with jungle fever taking on a connotation that might shock those of us entrapped by a morality that frowns upon transpecies romance.
Sophisticates of the scientific establishment easily dismiss bloggers for being out of touch and not playing with a full deck. However, seldom will they speak out against media mouthpieces allied in the cause of foisting a revolutionary secularism upon the nation such as The New Republic.
On the cover of the April 23, 2008 issue was a photo that bordered on the creepy. Depicted was a chimpanzee gazing dreamily off into the sky. However, that was not the truly disturbing aspect.
For as the chimp looked to the sky, tucked beneath his arm was a human female. However, this was not the embrace of a zookeeper showing a little affection to one of her charges or like one would share with a pet. Rather, from the depiction, one gets more of the impression that these two are somehow lovers.
The look on the woman's face with head tilted back with her eyes shut and her hand intertwined with the paw of the chimp causes one to wonder if the duo might go swinging in the trees together a bit later if one gets the drift.
Some might dismiss such shock as the rantings of a prude with too much time on their hands. However, numerous credentialed scientists have come out speculating as to the possibility of a human/chimp hybrid as mankind's technical expertise continues to advance while moral expertise among the overly educated continues to atrophy.
According to an article in Wired Magazine titled “Science Without Limits”, such a primate hybridization program was suggested by renowned evolutionary theorist Stephen Jay Gould. Categorizing the experiment as “the most potentially interesting and ethically unacceptable experiment I could imagine”, Gould speculated such a hybrid would theoretically shed light on how the retention of juvenile characteristics in chimpanzees led to the rise of human beings. That is if one believes in that sort of hooey.
The Wired article insists such an endeavor would not be as outlandish as it sounds. Research conducted with baboons and rhesus monkeys suggests that given genetic similarities such an undertaking might be biologically feasible. Such a creature could be brought into existence through the techniques of invitrofertilization and placed within a human surrogate.
Proverbs 8:36 teaches that those that hate God love death. That not only applies to the individual existential death that comes to mind when contemplating that term horrid to all people of goodwill. It also applies to the broader obliteration of our species that will result from the failure to properly recognize those distinctions that set mankind above his fellow creatures in the natural order below.
By Frederick Meekins
Wednesday, June 25
In a Youtube video on introductory Lutheranism, the viewer was assured that Martin Luther was no saint. Foremost among the flaws listed was nothing more than that he irritated people. But is that necessarily a flaw in itself without context or elaboration? Did not Christ, the sinless Lamb of God, so irritate people that He was crucified in part because of that character trait?
Tuesday, June 24
That famous catchphrase is itself non-scientific at best and pseudoscientific at worst.
Even if one grants that the universe is billions and billions of years old (to employ rhetoric of nearly that many parodies of Sagan), on what grounds can one state such an absolute conclusion from the basis of observational science?
For example, in the worldview espoused by Cosmos, it is held that the cosmos began at the moment of the Big Bang.
Thus, if one cannot peek back beyond that point, on what grounds apart from a faith as deeply held by the most adamant of theist does one conjecture that something else did not exist to bring the something into existence?
One can make the case of the cosmos being all there is all one wants.
But if the triumvirate of space, time and matter is all you are going to appeal to, on what grounds do you lodge a complaint should those not wanting such a gospel of nihilistic hopelessness to infect the minds of their children want to blow your brains out?
The last segment of Sagan's trademark mantra dogmatically asserted that the cosmos is all that will ever be.
If we are to exist in an epistemological framework where nothing is certain and there is no purposeful supreme intelligence superintending so that everything continues on a routine path, how do we know some manner of quantum cascade won't take place tonight where one subatomic particle is so knocked off course that all of reality disintegrates back into nothingness?
For did not even the great skeptics such as David Hume concede that, just because the sun rose from time immemorial, that was no guarantee that it would do so tomorrow?
Interestingly, the proponents of the Cosmos invocation might insist that they are providing viewers insight into whatever was or ever will be.
However, what these propagandists are conveniently leaving out are those aspects of the totality they happen to disagree with or cannot flippantly gloss over.
For example, in the premiere episode, an inordinate amount of time was spent badmouthing the adherents of a supposedly non-existent God in the case of Giodarno Bruno who was persecuted for believing that an infinite God could have created additional inhabited planets.
If nothing is to be concealed in the name of approaching a comprehension of the universe as it is rather than how we would like it to be, at any point in this documentary's presentation did Neil deGrasse Tyson --- himself an avowed atheistic humanist --- give an as lengthy presentation about the liberties infringed and abridged by assorted forms of atheism such as Communism in the attempt to maintain a stranglehold on power by preventing the dissemination of not only competing perspectives but as well as facts deemed inconvenient to adherents of that particular ideology?
Thus, if the hallmark of what distinguishes the modern era as supposedly superior to that of the medieval is that by the definition of these terms that we know better and are more enlightened, doesn't that make the atrocities of Communism far greater having been committed by the self-professed adherents of science?
In another episode, Tyson became emotionally discombobulated that if we as a species did not repent of our carbon combusting, global warming ways, we could very well cease to exist.
However, once again, if the only thing that exists is the material totality of the universe and there is no noncontingent intelligence or personality sustaining these complex systems, who is to say existence is superior to nonexistence?
Science writer George Johnson suggested that the tendency to view the universe as designed is an evolutionary holdover that humanity ought to progress beyond.
Then why not this desire for continued existence beyond that of our immediate selves?
For is this for the most part a trait and bias of the human plague infesting the planet?
Swarms of grass hoppers defoliating an area don't reflect if there will be enough to go around decades down the road.
One truism is that any resident of this realm will be subject to some kind of ultimate authority.
One can either settle for that of other flawed human beings that will in the end lead to disappointment and eventually destruction.
Or, one can look to God as the foundation and utilize a number of the tools that He provides such as His word foremostly followed by reason contemplating upon principles derived from that revelation and their operation through the handiwork of His creation.
By Frederick Meekins
Monday, June 23
And what about those that feel closer to God in the Cathedral of Nature than in a setting not that appreciably different than a police interrogation where those in attendance are expected to spill their guts in such a sordid and scandalous manner that the men and women need to be cordoned off from one another during the ritual?
In rebuking lack of attendance at prayer meeting as evidence of an individual not dedicating satisfactory time to prayer, isn't that saying that the appearance of prayer is more important than the substance? Unlike Sunday morning service, there is no indication that attendance at a midweek service is a Scriptural mandate.
So if he was mangled by an improvised explosive device filled with shrapnel or his children vaporized in the World Trade Center Attack, would he still be strumming such a blame the victim tune?
Click On The Headline
Friday, June 20
Science journalist George Johnson has written in the New York Times that the sense of design many experience when observing or reflecting upon the intricacies of nature is an evolutionary holdover that we must strive to overcome as a species. Yet, any other time, these very same radical naturalists insist that we must not resist the primitive animalistic impulse to copulate outside of the shackles of monogamous heterosexual marriage.
In an attempt to undermine a literal understanding of the Book of Genesis in conservative Evangelical circles, the argument is being put forward that the scientific implications of the Biblical origins account (especially the consideration of the timeframe involved) should not be considered a major issue. Instead, these texts are to be viewed as a corrective to the Egyptian polytheism from which the ancient Israelites emerged under the leadership of Moses. But if that is the case, just where does the contemporary believer draw the line? If death really didn’t enter into the world through the singular act of Adam, why should we take seriously the Bible’s claim that only Christ provides an escape from this curse? For that matter, if we are to not take seriously as literal the whole seven day time frame because the ancients apparently couldn’t wrap their minds around basic astronomy and geophysics but rather as the allegorical understanding of the Hebrew pastoralists, can we be assured that talk of the risen Christ just wasn’t concocted to mirror the tales of anthropomorphized deities that the Greek and the Romans had a penchant for in a time when the intricacies of biology where still a mystery?
Thursday, June 19
When asked what he thought the meaning of enlightenment was, Chopra responded, "The meaning here is that your real self is not a person, that there is no such thing as a separate self, that a person doesn't really exist...So enlightenment here means transcendence to that level of existence where the personal self becomes the universal self.”
If the separate self and the person does not exist, I wonder what Dr. Chopra would think if some tragedy befell his friends or family members? Is he simply going to brush it off by saying they did not exist anyway? If that is the case, I bet Mrs. Chopra and the children feel loved knowing that, in the eyes of dear old dad, out of sight will be out of mind.
With Christianity on the other hand, while the believer is admonished by I Thessalonians 4:13 not to mourn as the heathen as if there was no hope, the Christian legitimately pines for the departed loved one as one would for any friend or family member that has moved far away that you know you are probably not going to see for quite awhile but whom has nevertheless retained the same degree of distinct individuality as the day you met them.
Though Chopra has manipulated his followers into accepting his teachings and in the process made himself a very wealthy man (so much for desire causing suffering as basic Buddhism postulates), one can't help notice that Chopra doesn't exactly comport himself by the Eastern dictum that the self does not exist. For if the self does not exist, why has Chopra placed his name on the novel? And his photograph in the U.S. News & World Report profile is not of some disheveled lunatic consistently living out the implications of his worldview that appearance is just an allusion but rather of one who poses deliberately with his arm over his knee and his head cocked just so in a statement to the world that he is just a bit better than you.
More importantly, if a person doesn’t really exist since the individual is merely a “transient behavior of the total universe”, is Chopra going to forego the proceeds of what will probably be a bestseller and instead distribute the revenues to every person on the planet equally if “the universal self” and we are all the same person anyway? If Deepak Chopra doesn’t really exist, then why is the name slapped across his Center For Wellness?
But then again, such common sense and logic aren’t an integral part of Chopra’s worldview. When asked in the U.S. News & World Report interview if there is a fundamental tension between spirituality and religion, Chopra responded, “It [spirituality] has very little to do with religious dogma, ideology, or even self-righteous morality.”
Isn’t that itself a dogma? Are those that do not share in such metaphysical open-mindedness in the wrong? Doesn’t saying so imply a morality?
If ultimately morality does not really exist, on what grounds does Chopra have to complain should his publisher abscond with the proceeds of his novel? More importantly, if some horrible crime befell Mrs. Chopra and the kids, would such be wrong beyond the breaking of society’s arbitrarily derived laws? That must really make his family feel special. Some might point out I already made that point. However, if you have no problems with the Eastern worldview espoused by this cultic guru, repetition and second go-arounds float your boat anyway.
by Frederick Meekins
Wednesday, June 18
Are Conservative New York Roman Catholic Churches Being Abolished In Favor Of Sodomite Congregations?
Tuesday, June 17
In verse 1, Paul points out that what he is about to teach is not some new doctrine pulled out of the sky but rather a reminder of the fundamental Gospel on which believers in the church have taken their stand often without regard to earthly consequences. In verse 2, Paul makes it known that the Gospel is not just a set of intellectual propositions but rather the message through which the believer is saved if they "hold firmly to the word I have preached to you" outside of which there is no hope.
Sometimes when confronted with the complexities of both daily life and raging religious debates, it is easy to neglect and even forget about the basics upon which our faith rests. Thus, in verses 3 and 4 Paul provides the Corinthians with a recap of the basic Gospel message which he summarized as the following: "that Christ died for our sins, according to the Scripture, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures."
Either in an attempt to lull believers into lowering their discernment or, as in the case of the Neo-Orthodox to curry favor with the elites of academic theology, occasionally one will find that the cultured despisers of the old time religion will allow those comforted by traditional religious language to speak of some kind of belief in Christ's Resurrection. However, these propagandists turn around and insist that at best the Resurrection be understood merely as a metaphorical or spiritual event meaning Jesus simply went on living in the memories of those that loved him or in a manner outside of verifiable empirical history.
In verse 5, the reader is told that the risen Christ appeared to Peter and then the Twelve. This is also a summation of Gospel accounts such as John 20 where Jesus appeared to His disciples in the Upper Room.
Some skeptics might dismiss such encounters, claiming that the Disciples were so fraught with grief and so beside themselves that they imagined seeing Jesus. However, from verse 6, we learn that Jesus appeared to over 500 believers and it is highly doubtful you could get 500 Jews to agree on anything unless they had witnessed it for themselves. And though it might carry slightly less resonance with us as it did for the Corinthians, at one time one could ask these 500 if what Paul wrote was true or not as at that time most of the witnesses were still alive.
In verse 7, it is pointed out that Jesus appeared to James. While the testimony is powerful that Jesus appeared to over 500 people, the resurrected Christ is further authenticated by appearing before his earthly half-brother who would have been more qualified than the 500 as a family member to expose someone masquerading as Jesus. While this report of what others experienced is sufficient to establish the veracity of Christ's resurrection as a concrete historical event, in court first hand eyewitness testimony is considered a very powerful form of evidence. As such, in verse 8, for that reason Paul claims Christ appeared to him as well.
But whereas most would consider themselves superior to others if they had a tangible firsthand encounter with God, in verse 9 Paul does not consider himself worthy of being an apostle and views himself as the least among them because of his past persecution of the Church. This itself has implications in the life of the average person.
Often, some put off accepting Christ as their personal savior by claiming that Jesus would never accept them because of all the wicked things they have done. However, by accepting Paul into the ranks of apostleship, the average sinner is shown that, if we confess the error of our ways and repent of them under the shed blood of Christ, as I John 1:9 tells us, "He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
In verse 10, Paul admits that his turnaround was not the result of pulling himself up by his own sandalstraps but rather as a result of God's own grace. From this, believers realize that what good ultimately comes about in their own lives is not the result of our own efforts but rather a result of God working through us. As it says in Isaiah 64:6, our righteousness is as filthy rags.
Even in our religiously turbulent times, the denial of the Resurrection sounds so foreign to our Christian ears that it is easy to assume that this heresy is a new development. However, it must be remembered that the Greco-Roman world was marked by (to utilize an overused phrase) considerable diversity. Paul writes, "But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say there is not resurrection of the dead?"
Such an inquiry would indicate that, even at this early stage in the history of the church, criticisms of the Resurrection were beginning to creep in doctrinally, possibly in part due to Neo-Platonic or Gnostic influences. For these philosophies tended to downplay the role and need for the body in the quest for spiritual enlightenment. For example, the Docetics believed that Jesus only appeared to have a body and was rather a spirit that could not really die or be resurrected.
In verse 13, Paul begins to expose the implications of just what it would mean if there was no resurrection from the dead. Paul bluntly states, "If there is no resurrection from the dead, then not even Christ has been raised."
Some are so detached from what they believe that they would probably continue plodding along not caring one way or the other whether Jesus rose from the dead. It is not until the implications of certain ideas show up on the doorstep of our own existential predicament that we begin to sit up and take notice.
Thus, in verse 14, Paul draws the conclusion that, if Christ has not been raised, his preaching is useless and so is our faith. We are shown why this is true for a number of reasons.
In verse 15, it is pointed out that, if Christ was not resurrected, the Apostles such as Paul would be false witnesses about God. And if they cannot be trusted in this matter, why should they be trusted in others?
In verse 16, the subject is examined from a slightly different angle. Paul posits that, if the dead in an absolute sense do not rise in the body, then Christ has not been raised either.
In verse 17, Paul applies the issue of the Resurrection to a direct personal application by pointing out that, unless Christ has been risen from the dead, our faith is a waste of time. For as Christ Himself responded in Matthew 12:39-40 when asked for a sign authenticating His authority, “But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”
Adding to the personal repercussions if Christ is not raised from the dead, in verse 18 Paul provides an added shock observing that, if Christ has not been raised from the dead, the those asleep in Him (a polite way of referring to the dead) are lost. Anyone that has lost a loved one as a Christian knows that sometimes the only thing that enables you to cope with the big gaping hole in your heart is knowing that one day we will be reunited with them. As I Thessalonians 4:13 instructs, “Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope.” Because of this hope, we don’t cry because those we cherish have passed out of existence but rather in a manner more akin over someone that has moved away that we won’t have any contact with for what to us may seem to be many years or even decades to come.
Finally, to end this litany of despair regarding the ramifications if Christ did not rise from the dead, Paul flat out says in verse 19, “If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pittied more than all men.” As stated previously, sometimes liberals and progressives think they are doing a magnanimous thing by enunciating an admiration for the so-called “ethics of Jesus”. However, if we simply end up as food for worms as G. Gordon Liddy mused one time on “The Tonight Show” before his own spiritual awakening, then turning the other cheek and putting others before yourself is a rather pathetic way to live if kindly and devout grandmothers end up with the same eternal reward as homicidal serial rapists.
Fortunately, Paul does not leave the reader on a decidedly glum note and in fact becomes markedly more positive with verse 20. Here it is reinforced that Christ has indeed risen from the dead as the firstfruits of those that have fallen asleep.
In verses 21-22, Paul shows how it is only logical that the Resurrection would be provided through Christ. Paul’s argument goes something like this: since death came through one man, the resurrection would also come through one man.
From Genesis 3, we learn that, as the forefather of the human race, as a result of his sin of eating the forbidden fruit, Adam brought death to all those to whom his sin nature was passed on. Therefore, since God the Father sent His Son into the world in the form of a sinless human being to live the sinless life we could not yet have to pay the price of the sins of the world through the shedding of His blood and being raised from the dead, if we acknowledge our sinfulness and what Christ did for us what we could not, then as our newly adopted federal head we are extended the privilege of enjoying our resurrection life in Heaven with Him throughout eternity.
In verses 23-28, Paul provides a rough chronology to the order of events connected to the Resurrection and the ultimate fulfillment of all things. In verse 23, it is pointed out that, as we already know, Christ was risen first as the firstfruits. We will be given our opportunity when He returns.
However, that will not be the sole purpose of Christ's return. For at that time, according to verse 24, Jesus will hand the world over to God the Father after He has destroyed all earthly power and authority.
In verse 25, Paul informs us that Christ must reign until all His enemies are under His feet, the last of which, verse 26 tells us, is death. These verses coincide with Revelation chapter 25, describing the Millennial Kingdom particularly as that period draws to a close when Satan is released from the Pit to foment one last rebellion that is ultimately put down according to verses 7-10. In Revelation 20:14, death is cast into the Lake of Fire, becoming (as I Corinthians 15:26 tells us) the "the last enemy destroyed".
In verses 27-28, the believer is given a glimpse into the distinctions within the Trinitarian Godhead. Verse 27 tells us that, while everything has been put under feet of Christ, that does not include the Father as it was the Father who put everything under Christ. In verse 28, Christ the son willingly subjects Himself to God the Father. This demonstrates that, while Christ is Himself God, He is Himself subject (though in perfect accord) to the will of the Father.
In verses 29-34, Paul returns to the theme of why should anyone even bother with Christianity if the Resurrection is a fiction. In verse 29, Paul asks, "Now if there is no resurrection, what will those do who are baptized for the dead?" If there is no future hope for the dead, why should we express any formalized concern for them?
Throughout this chapter, Paul has primarily analyzed the logical implications that would result if the Resurrection was not an actual event. However, in verses 30-33, we can easily pick up on the emotion and passion the Apostle feels in connection with the issue.
In verse 30, Paul asks point blank, "And as for us, why do we endanger ourselves every hour? I die every day...just as surely as I glory over you in Christ Jesus our Lord." Paul is asking why should he bother risking his behind if its all for nothing anyway.
Often in Christian circles, it is portrayed that serving in the Lord's will is all sunshine and moonbeams here in this life, forgetting that in this life we will have trouble. Paul makes it known in verse 31 that, even though he found much glory in his labors on behalf of his fellow believers, he died a bit everyday as of a result of these hardships.
Bringing this line of analysis to a conclusion in verse 32, Paul observes that, if he fought wild animals in Ephesus for merely human reasons, what had he gained and if the dead are not raised one might as well "Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die." While this quote is from Isaiah 22:13, it is also a summation of the Epicurean philosophy prominent throughout the Greco-Roman world at that time. It was the contention of this perspective that, since this world was all the individual had, the best one could hope for was to maximize pleasure, minimize pain, and look to one's own interests while in pursuit of this goal.
From verse 35 onwards, Paul for the most part examines what the Resurrected and their bodies will be like. In verse 35, the question on everybody's mind is asked: "How are the dead raised? With what kind of body will they come?"
Since most of us are buried in the ground after we die, in verse 36-40, Paul likens the process of the resurrection to the planting of a seed. As such, our earthly bodies that are subject to decay and death serve as a kind of seed from which God will bring forth our glorified bodies, each after its own kind.
Though there will be similarities between our old bodies and our resurrection bodies, they will also be marked by considerable differences. In verse 42, it is observed, "The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable." Thus, unlike the old body, the resurrection body is not subject to death.
From verse 43, we learn this is because the resurrected body of the Christian will no longer be marred by the stain of sin. The text reads, "it is sown in dishonor [a reference to original sin passed down through our parents all the way back to Adam and Eve], it is raised in glory." In verse 44, we learn that while the body is sown as a natural body, it is raised as a spiritual body.
In verses 45-49, we learn that the natures of these are derived from the federal heads to whom those possessing them belong. In verse 45, it is stated that the natural body traces back to Adam whereas the incorruptible body comes as a result of the finished work of the last Adam, Jesus, being "a life-giving spirit."
It would be easy from this to dismiss the natural body entirely as was the tendency of certain Gnostic sects of the ancient world. However, as Paul points out in verse 46, the natural body came first before the spiritual. In terms of human beings, one cannot have one without the other.
In verses 47-48, Paul examines a number of the differences derived from the natures of the first and second Adams. Verse 47 informs us that the first man cam from the dust of the earth whereas the second man, Christ, came from Heaven.
Since Adam and Christ are the two respective heads of the human race in terms of representing redemptive states, their respective followers take on a number of their characteristics. Verse 48 says, "As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the man of heaven, so also are those who are of heaven." As those, those still in Adam remain in sin and are subject to the penalties of being in such a state. Those found in Christ are no longer subject to the eternal penalty of their sins.
In verse 50, Paul announces that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. Thus, we are provided with the primary reason why we much undergo this transformation from, to the use words found at the end of the verse, from the "perishable" and into the "imperishable".
It is usually assumed that one cannot enter this glorified state without having first partaken of death's bitter taste. However, in verses 51-52, Paul reveals that, for all Christians, such will not be the case. According to the text, in the twinkling of an eye (even quicker than a blink) when the lat trumpet sounds and the dead are raised, those living at that time will be instantaneously changed.
Verse 53 reminds us of the lesson learned in verses 42-44 that this transformation of our very nature signals death's ultimate defeat as it will no longer hold any power in the end over the redeemed child of God. In verse 55, a bit of a taunt is rubbed in the face of death when the passage reads, "Where, O Death, is your victory? Where, O Death, is your sting?"
From verse 56, it is clarified that the sting of death is sin and the power of sin is the law. However, as is proclaimed in verse 57, God gives the believer victory over these things through Jesus Christ. Since He takes away our sins and takes them as far as the east is from the west according to Psalms 103:12, these transgressions do not leave a lasting stain if we ask for forgiveness.
In verse 58, Paul ends on a note of victorious encouragement. Echoing words similar to the comforting truism of if the Lord is for us, who can be against us, Paul admonishes Christians to stand firm, let nothing move them, and to give ourselves fully to the work of the Lord because of labor is not in vain. Without the Resurrection provided by the work of Christ, the most anyone could hope for is the cold sleep of the grave. However, such physical affliction is ultimately temporary as a result of His triumph.
In “Star Wars”, Obi-Wan Kenobi warns Darth Vader that, should the Sith lord decide to strike him down, the Jedi master would become more powerful than could possibly be imagined. Though a fictionalized scene since as soon as Kenobi was struck down by Vader’s blade Kenobi began to instruct Luke in the ways of the Force from beyond the grave, the sentiment is one echoed in the hope that the Christian has a life beyond this one not subject to the same drawbacks, restraints, and letdowns that plague is the few brief years that we trod this earth.
by Frederick Meekins
Monday, June 16
There indeed are movies and television programs that attempt to lure the viewer into embracing the occult.
However, Maleficent did not really seem to be one of them.
Rather, the magical and mythological elements served more as a backdrop against which to consider more mundane themes and human truths.
Though certainly not a traditional rendition of the classic Sleeping Beauty tale, a number of Christian analysts and cultural critics have done a less than complete job in considering the story as presented.
Before condemning the version of Maleficent in this interpretation of the story, shouldn't it be considered what drove her over the edge?
To gain the throne, someone that she once did have feelings for did slip her a roofie and amputated her wings.
In the story, wasn't that sort of an allegorical depiction of being raped?
Furthermore, you can't just expect Princess Aurora to automatically take her father's side in the dispute as she didn't even know that the crazed king was her father until the time she turned 16. She had never really met the man.
However, though mistaken about her original motives, the Princess had considered Maleficent a presence in the background at least throughout her life.
As much as the legalists oppose dating and displays of casual affection, you'd think the movie would get bonus points for making a fuss that the kiss of the prince hadn't had time to develop from infatuation into true love by the time of their second encounter.
Instead of a kneejerk reaction to classical fantasy motifs, perhaps the viewer informed by a Christian worldview should also take the time to consider the message as depicted in the lives of both Maleficent and King Stephan of how the hurts and temptations of life in this fallen world can eventually warp one's soul to the point where the individual is a distorted version of what they use to be.
By Frederick Meekins
Friday, June 13
In “How To Train A Dragon 2”, it is hinted that one of the characters is gay.
Homeschool advocate Kevin Swanson has already forbade his children from seeing it on the basis of a single line.
But if one imposes an outright prohibition over something that is more inferred at this point by someone with an adult understanding rather than on the level of a child excited to see the dragons, aren’t you going to end up creating a greater fascination and obsession over this movie?
Click On The Headline
Thursday, June 12
Medical Elites Declare Genital Mutilization Should No Longer Necessary For Legally Recognized Sex Change
Regarding many of the conservative Evangelicals properly outraged over the gay rights flag hoisted over the U.S. embassy in Israel: do they plan to criticize Israel as vehemently for the establishment of a flourishing homosexual tourist industry in the Holy Land? The Jews Are Always Right portion of Fundamentalism certainly doesn’t mind bashing the Roman Catholic Church over the head for the slightest doctrinal deviation or shortcoming.
Given that Mohler's program is primarily available through this particular medium, it is ironic that he would raise this complaint.
Should the discerning Christian cut back on this renowned seminarian's program if it is not so much quality of the screen time we are to be concerned with rather than quality?
As part of his argument, Mohler quotes from theologian Jacques Ellul who argued that, once a technology enters our lives, it begins to take them over.
Would Dr. Mohler have made such a complaint about the printing press and the revolution in information made available by the proliferation of economically approved.
Back then, it was also argued that works disseminated in that fashion would undermine authorities and put knowledge in the hands of those not deemed qualified to handle it.
But most importantly, without the printed word, would the Protestantism (of which Albert Mohler is one of the movement's most prominent contemporary spokesmen and thinkers) have blossomed into a viable expression of the Christian tradition?
By Frederick Meekins
Wednesday, June 11
Tuesday, June 10
Monday, June 9
Those professing to be enlightened and progressive scoffed that such a claim was an over-exaggeration designed to elicit fear. However, in the thirty-plus years since the legalization of abortion, some of the nation’s most celebrated academics in the most prestigious publications are now advocating that we as a society do away with infants that do not live up to some standard while going out of their way to defend the rights of animals and criminals.
Princeton Professor of Bioethics Peter Singer, who advocates bestiality (giving a whole other connotation to the phrase a boy and his dog) and animals rights as epitomized by the Great Apes Project which argues gorillas and orangutans deserve many of the protections enjoyed by human beings, believes that it is permissible to kill an infant up until 28 days after birth because an infant is not self-aware nor worthy of personhood since the baby has no preferences concerning living or dying. Furthermore, such a course of action might be of benefit to the family.
Interestingly, Singer is not some lone crank that got hold of a bad batch of pot in the faculty lounge. Professor Steven Pinker, director of MIT’s Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, in the November 2, 2000 issue of the New York Times Magazine defended the practice of infanticide by suggesting that the killing of an infant should be treated differently than a person.
Pinker argues that we only have a right not to be killed if we have “an ability to reflect upon ourselves as a continuous locus of consciousness, to form and savor plans for the future, to dread death, and to express the choice not to die.” Thus, infants do not qualify for protections against murder, and may be disposed of without offense.
The fundamental issue of this debate is perhaps one of the most important of all in this day of unsettled foundations. That of course is the question of what exactly is a human being.
Both Singer and Pinker argue that newborns should not enjoy legal protection from on the part of parents or the medical establishment because they are not fully human since they have not reached a certain level of development. The traditional ethical position contends that the baby is entitled to the same protections from bodily harm as any other member of the human family. Though these two professors have countless accolades and honors heaped upon them for their acclaimed erudition, both science and Biblical teaching affirm the position considered outdated by influential opinion-makers.
From scripture, it clearly teaches, “Thou shalt not murder.” And though many theologians and Bible scholars grant an exception for the taking of human life in the case of self-defense in the case of war or when confronted by someone intent on doing bodily harm and in the case of capital punishment authorized by the Noahic covenant as spelled out in Genesis 9, in no way does an infant pose the kind of threat presented by these specific exceptions. Inconvenience just does not constitute that manner of bodily harm.
Jeremiah 1:5 says, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you.” In Psalms 139:13-16 it says, “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;...My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body.”
If the embryo inside the mother is not a distinct person in his own right, how is the Lord able to know a specific collection of cells apart from the mother? Life as a continuum from conception and gestation on through birth and maturation is further confirmed in Psalms 51:5 which says, “Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.” Nonpersons are not capable of existing in a state of sin.
Those with degrees as long as their arms cannot turn around and claim such speculations are ancient Hebrew superstitions. These prophetic revelations are confirmed by the very science the wonders of the modern world are based upon.
Both the fetus and the newborn are as genetically unique at these particular stages as the ethicists and physicians pondering the nuances of this philosophical quandary. Scott Rae writes, “(1) An adult human being is the end result of the continuous growth of the organism from conception. (2) From conception to adulthood, this development has no break that is relevant to the essential nature of the fetus. (3) Therefore, one is a human person from the point of conception onward (142).”
One of the most powerful arguments against both infanticide and abortion is that if you devalue human life at these stages, what is to prevent it from being devalued at other stages by radical utilitarians and the like? This is what happens when the standard suggested by both Peter Singer and Steven Pinker is employed.
For starters, what even is a “continuous locus of consciousness” and even if we knew, how many would even want to reflect upon it? Furthermore, even if one did, shouldn’t human value be based on something more than whether or not the individual is tickled pink at the prospect of his own belly button?
What if the individual does not temporarily possess the ability to reflect upon oneself as a “continuous locus of consciousness”; does this mean the disgruntled spouse has a window of opportunity each night to whack their mate as the sleep and get a get of jail free card? After all, during many stages of sleep one is not even aware of one’s surroundings much less one’s inner emotional workings.
The other criteria used to determine whether or not an infant is worthy of life are no less troubling. Both Pinker and Singer hold to a standard that an individual is not worthy of life unless one has the ability to ask to be kept alive.
If that is the case, if one slips on the ice and knocks themselves out, they had better come to before the ambulance gets there because who knows what organ hungry doctors would do if this criteria is allowed to play itself out. Before you know it, your kidneys and corneas could be on airplanes headed in multiple directions.
All joking aside, Pinker’s comments especially cause one to stop and pause to wonder if these remarks could be used to justify a sliding scale for human life not all that different than the blue books used by insurance companies to assess automobile depreciation. For example, Pinker says, to be worthy of life, one must savor plans for the future and dread death. Since the twenty-year old has more of these than the eighty-year old, doesn’t it then follow that it would be a greater offense to kill the twenty-year old than the eighty year-old? If the Professor has raised his children in light of such values, I trust for his own sake he does not let his guard down around them for fear of what he might find being plunged in his back as he ages.
Furthermore, who at some point in their lives (especially during the moody teenage years) hasn’t gone through a period where they didn’t care one way or the other whether life continued or not? Even if one is no where near jumping off the root of a building or suck fumes out of an exhaust pipe hasn't gone through times where the thought did not transiently skip across out minds how much easier things would be if we simply didn't wake up the next day. That did not mean that those around us had the right to do away with us.
It has been said that a society will be judged by how it treats its weakest members. If current academic opinion about how easily the unborn can be discarded is any kind of barometer, America could be in for a tumultuous twenty-first century.
By Frederick Meekins
Thursday, June 5
Wednesday, June 4
Tuesday, June 3
Thus far we know the following. Medical science has determined that stem cells posses the potential of being altered into other kinds of cells. This could potentially make them useful in curing various kinds of diseases.
The controversy arises over the source from which these cells are harvested. One possible source are mature stem cells obtained from adults. This extraction does not harm the donor. The drawback is, however, that it is believed it may not be possible to manipulate mature stem cells into becoming the different kinds of cells doctors and scientists may need to treat all the conditions begging for medical attention.
On the other hand, it has been suggested that stem cells obtained from embryos may be a more fruitful source. These may prove easier to alter since they have not yet matured. The main drawback, however, is that the embryo must be destroyed in order to obtain the stem cells for research and experimentation.
This debate has become one of the foremost issues in contemporary American politics as both sides make a number of compelling ethical claims. On the one hand, advocates of embryonic stem cell research often suffer from afflictions those of reasonably good health cannot possibly understand at this given point in our lives. It is only natural that they and their loved ones would want research into what could be the most effective cure. Yet on the other hand, there are concerns about the destiny of the embryo from which the stem cells are taken since the fertilized egg is a self-contained genetically distinct living human organism.
The foremost ethical principle bearing on this dispute is the sanctity of human life. Interestingly, in this case the principle is being invoked by both sides of the debate. Thus, one almost needs the wisdom of Solomon in attempting to apply the concept in a judicious manner.
Since the suffering are beings made in the image of God, medical science does have a duty to do what it can to ease the misery of the profoundly ill. That said though, society in general and the medical establishment in particular must go out of its way to defend innocent human life that cannot protect itself.
It is against the law to destroy an eagle egg which is essentially an unborn eagle. Then why should it then be permissible to kill an unborn child since it is a principle Biblical in origin traditionally accepted throughout Western society that a human being is infinitely more valuable than any animal? For if His eye is on the sparrow, then I know He’s watching me.
Furthermore, with all the efforts by activists lobbying for funding for embryonic stem cell research, it is doubtful that most of the public is being told the entire picture regarding these developments in medical science.
According to columnist Charles Krauthammar, who is himself a paraplegic and a trained physician, in a column from October 15, 2004 titled “Anything to get elected” posted at Townhall.com claims of those such as John Kerry and John Edwards that hold out the hope of such miracle cures only if Americans vote for the right candidates, “In my 25 years in Washington, I have never seen a more loathsome display of demagoguery.” Krauthammar goes on to point out that it could be another generation before scientists are anywhere close to finding a cure for paralysis and that NIH stem cell researcher Ronald McKay has admitted that “stem cells as an Alzheimer’s cure are a fiction but that people need a fairytale.”
Furthermore, even if embryonic stem cells prove more malleable than their adult counterparts, we might not like the results. According to a LifeNews.com story by Steven Ertelt titled “Embryonic Stem Cell Research Causes Tumors”, University of Rochester researchers found that, while stem cells injected into the brains of rats to ease the symptoms of Parkinson’s did help a number of the rodents, a number of the cells began growing in a manner that would have led to tumors.
Apart from the harm that might befall the recipients of the procedure, it would still remain morally dubious even if it returned the patients to robust health and vitality. Writing in another column entitled “Stem Cell Miracle?: An Advance This Side Of Bush’s Moral Line” appearing in the January 12, 2007 Washington Post, Charles Krauthammar admits that, even though he himself supports abortion and does not believe life begins at conception, he is leery of what may result should some kind of restriction not be placed on embryonic research. Krauthammar warns, “You don’t need religion to tremble at the thought of unrestricted embryo research. You simply have to have a healthy respect for the human capacity for doing evil in pursuit of the good. Once we have taken the position of many stem cell advocates that embryos are discardable tissue with no more intrinsic value than a hangnail, then the barriers are down. What is to prevent us from producing not just tissues and organs but humanlike organisms for preservation as a source of future body parts on demand?”
This possibility has been explored in a number of imaginative contexts such as “Gene Rodenberry’s: Earth Final Conflict”, where one episode depicted human bodies not quite allowed to develop consciousness kept in a state similar to suspended animation until their organs were needed. In “The Island” starring Ewan MacGregor, clones were kept in a guarded facility until their parts were needed by their genetic progenitors.
The fundamental guiding principle of medicine is to do no harm. That lofty ideal ought to apply to both the patient seeking services as well as the individual from which the cure could very well be extracted.
By Frederick Meekins
Monday, June 2
A pastor opposed to church hopping remarked that church is not about being a spectator but about serving. But what if one is not allowed to serve in a church unless one has exhibited a degree of personal and doctrinal perfection that has next to nothing whatsoever with the tasks at hand?
It would therefore seem that contemporary society is marked by two seemingly contradictory extremes --- that of extreme license and that of excessive control. However, upon closer inspection it could be concluded that these conditions are not as contradictory as the situation might originally appear. Rather, it would seem each is the result of the systematic removal of the ethical balance provided within the Judeo-Christian tradition with its emphasis upon transcendent standards provided by an infinitely just and loving God.
With the increasing complexity of knowledge and technology, those trained in the acquisition and use of this complex body of thought (those broadly referred to as “intellectuals”) have taken on increased levels of influence and responsibility throughout society. No longer does agriculture or manufacturing dominate society to the degree it once did.
Futurists from Alvin Toffler to Newt Gingrich have characterized the current sociological epoch as information-based, with those manipulating this information from government bureaucrats to Hollywood producers exercising unfathomable power over the composition of the contemporary mind. Therefore, it must be remembered, as Lord Acton is believed to have said, “Absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
Through a historical process too complicated to detail to a significant degree in this brief analysis, the prevailing secular elite came to see the world around them and their own assorted intellectual systems as satisfactory explanations in and of themselves for the reality in which these thinkers found themselves. According to Phillip Johnson in “Reason In The Balance”, this way of viewing the world prevalent among the most influential intellectuals is naturalism. Naturalism is the idea that the material reality constitutes the totality of existence and the idea of God is merely a mental construct promulgated in an attempt to cope with the stark realities of the universe in which man finds himself (7).
The average person might naturally conclude that naturalism by its nature would confine itself to the issues of blunt observable scientific fact. However, naturalism has left the tedium of the laboratory and now seeks to influence fields as divergent from science as education, ethics, and government. It is through this set of paradigms embracing the present material reality as the highest criteria of judgment that the twin siblings of chaos and tyranny have become so prevalent throughout world society.
No matter what the secular elites call their particular systems or what concerns these systems emphasize, it is the goal of the secular elite to remake man in the image of the prevailing secular elite. According to Alister McGrath in “Intellectuals Don’t Need God & Other Modern Myths”, prominent ideologies competing for the minds of men include Enlightenment rationalism, Marxism, and scientific materialism (160).
Despite the shades of difference between each of these systems, at their core each shares the assumption that man is bound by no eternal standard beyond this reality and can be remade into whatever the powers that be see fit. It is from this effort to remake the fundamental nature of man that the sorrow of anarchy and tyranny flow.
Bound by certain God-ordained limits regarding behavioral standards and human relationships, man can expect nothing but heartache should he decide to ignore these warnings. However, those seeking to craft a cultural ethos standing apart from the moral will of God regularly ignore these moral stoplights like newly-licensed teenagers barreling down the Las Vegas strip.
Proponents of modernism originally hypothesized that man could retain a high degree of morality without reference to all that theological superstition. Yet without a clear theological reference by which to measure, the actions of man degenerate into the depths of unfathomable evil.
According to Norman Geisler in “Introduction To Philosophy: A Christian Perspective”, when man looks to himself as the source of right and wrong, the result is existential subjectivism and relativism where each person becomes a law unto themselves (404).
And while modernism attempted to maintain the illusion of objective standards apart from the revelation of God, the logical conclusion of such atheistic thinking --- postmodernism --- holds to no such delusions. In fact, political radical and literary critic Michel Foulcalt has stated there are no facts (though this assertion is itself stated as a fact) and his fellow travelers down the deconstructionist superhighway literally fancy themselves as “assassins of objectivity” according to Lynne Cheney in “Telling The Truth: Why Our Culture & Country Have Stopped Making Sense & What We Can Do About It” (91).
Such sentiments possess ramifications beyond settling the issue of whether or not hemlines will be low or high for the coming year. Such ideas determine the very shape and composition of human society and relationships.
This is particularly evident on college campuses where these kinds of ideas enjoy free reign having the status of orthodoxy and where no one bats an eye with anarchy and tyranny walking together hand in hand. For example, Dinesh D’Souza points out in “Illiberal Education : The Politics Of Race & Sex On Campus” that many college campuses distribute condoms and support the vilest profanity as art yet advocate a radical form of feminism just about branding traditional forms of sex as rape and enforce speech codes so broad as to punish “misdirected laughter” and “exclusion from conversation” (238).
Furthermore, much of twentieth and twenty-first history has been a running commentary on the chaos and tyranny that result from attempting to undermine the insoluble union between morality and divinity. The former Soviet Union perhaps stands as the primary example of this kind of experiment where in an attempt to better himself man turns his back on God and reaps the consequences in abundance. That particular society experienced bloodshed and misery rarely repeated in human history except perhaps in its sister dictatorships of Nazi Germany and Maoist China.
Without an objective standard as provided by the moral revelation of God, the state as embodied by the Communist Party was free to do as it pleased such as changing the law at the drop of a hat and then violate the law when it suited without any degree of institutional recourse available to the Soviet people. In his monumental Understanding The Times, David Noebel quotes a Communist functionary who said, "There is no God, no hereafter, no punishment for evil. We can do as we wish. I thank God, in whom I don't believe, that I have lived to this hour when I can express all of this evil in my heart (104). Few Evangelical thinkers have been able to express the moral dangers of atheism in a more succinct manner.
Standing in marked opposition to atheism and its law of the jungle and inherent antinomianism is belief in God and the corollaries of morality flowing from God's existence. From the heartaches and confusion mentioned previously in this exposition, it is evident that mankind is incapable of establishing a satisfactory moral system of his own accord.
Instead, man must be provided one by an objective outside source yet one familiar with the conditions under which man is capable of thriving. Furthermore, it is only through God as revealed in Scripture that one is even justified in speaking of morality in the first place.
Try as he might, C.S. Lewis points out in "Mere Christianity", man cannot escape the encompassing embrace or rebuke of morality. For even in the attempt to flee from its more traditional formulations, one must invoke the structure of its dialogue in order to appeal to a competing set of standards (3).
For example, D. James Kennedy points out in "Character & Destiny: A Nation In Search Of Its Soul" that tolerance is the last virtue of an immoral society since this moral principle in invoked to cover over a plethora of popular abominations ranging from pornography to abortion to sodomy (78). The issue is not so much that man will live without some degree of morality, but rather by whose standards will man live and the consequences resulting from such decisions.
Westminster Seminary Professor John Frame elaborates in "Apologetics To The Glory Of God" that, in order to exist as objective standards beyond the level of subjective sentiments, morals must stem from an absolute source; and since these principles govern personable entities, they must exude from an absolute ultimate personality (100). If morality exists in a transcendent source apart from man in God, morality is granted a degree of liberation from the murky fog of subjectivism yet is accessible to man and can be said to exist in all situations even if finite man refused to disentangle himself from the passion of the moment to view these conundrums from the crisp peaks of objective detachment.
Since these divinely legislated standards stem from God, they exist as part of the underlying fabric of the universe. Try as he might, man cannot escape the lure of morality, such a situation further attesting to the power of the God standing behind these principles. Romans 2:14-15 says, "Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law, since they show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts...(NIV)."
Even those who actively choose to suppress and undermine this universal order appeal to it when it suits their interests. C.S. Lewis writes in "Mere Christianity", "Whenever you find a man who says he does not believe in a real Right and Wrong, you will find the same man going back on this a moment later. He may break his promise to you, but if you try breaking one to him he will be complaining before he can say Jack Robinson (5)." Norman Geisler illustrates this point in "Christian Ethics" in the story of a student professing antinomianism who appealed to objective standards upon receiving a failing grade from this ethics instructor regarding a trivial matter (384).
At this point, readers not normally enchanted by the banter of academic dialogue may concede that morality does indeed flow from God but may wonder what practical impact such a truth may have in everyday existence. Actually, quite a bit.
Since God is both the legislator of traditional morality and the loving creator of man, it follows that the traditional moral system established by God and set forth in the revelation of the Holy Bible is the system of morality best suited to the nature of humanity, both protecting him to the greatest possible degree from the rampant evil plaguing a fallen world and allowing him to enjoy whatever goodness that remains in it through the grace of God.
For example, God did not establish the rules surrounding marriage in order to toss a wet blanket over the fornication follies. Rather, confining the act of human intimacy within the context of marriage balances both the desire for physical pleasure and the need for lasting love, to say nothing of protecting the individual against the proto-apocalyptic pestilences now ravaging millions. Instead of withering away like a forgotten memory as predicted by some, Tim LaHaye hypothesizes in "The Battle For The Family" that the family will in reality provide a foundation of stability in times of unprecedented social turmoil (237).
The moral argument for God is far more than a dry academic proof found in seminary textbooks. Its reality is being made more concrete each day throughout the culture as the nation continues to drift away from its Judeo-Christian foundations.
In "Turning The Tide: The Fall Of Liberalism & The Rise Of Common Sense", Pat Robertson describes the two possible futures that await the United States (293-296). Americans can either repent of their wickedness and return to God and His standards, experiencing national renewal, individual well-being, and eternal salvation in the process. Or, the American people can continue in their sin and deny God's very existence, risking national decline, personal suffering, and eternal damnation as a result. The choice is up to you, with your eternal destiny and the welfare of your family hanging in the balance.
by Frederick Meekins