Lust and Power

If you’ve ever watched or read Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, the lust for power is well imagined in the lust for the One Ring.

One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,

One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them

The lust for the ring of power was great.  It was known to contain great power and endowed the bearer with magical abilities such as invisibility, unusually long life, and others, but at a great price.  It was a corrupting force.  Regardless of the intent of the person who possessed the ring, no matter how it was used, the ring only answered to the one who made it.

Let’s unpack the concept that Tolkien was trying to convey.  The first and most obvious layer is that power corrupts.

“Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men.”

John Emerich Edward Dalberg Acton, 1st Baron Acton

“Unlimited power is apt to corrupt the minds of those who possess it.”

William Pitt the Elder, Earl of Chatham and British Prime Minister from 1766 to 1778

The lure of the power in the ring was impossible to resist.  Men would do anything to gain possession of that power – lie, cheat, steal, kill.

Take a look around at all disconcerting tyrannies that I have written extensively about to date.  Those tyrannies are either aimed at obtaining, preserving, or strengthening power.

Yesterday, May 30th, the NSA’s Utah Data Center went live.  The center has the capability to capture, record, and analyze every form of electronic communication in the domestic United States every single day.

The Department of Homeland Security has expanded it’s mission from just protecting modes of travel to protecting and actively policing within the United States.

The warrantless wiretaps on the AP, the targeting of individual reporters such as James Rosen, the IRS’ unequal treatment of conservative, Tea Party, and Jewish groups are all methods being used to silence opposition and whistleblowers through intimidation.

More than 70 percent of federal spending goes to dependency programs.  The threat of removal of these programs ensures that dissension is unthinkable lest the life support that 128 million Americans rely on for subsistence be taken away.  These people have become serfs of the new feudal masters within the government (both elected and unelected).

Schools in Florida, under the guise of an insidious program called Common Core, scanned and retained the irises of school children for their “safety” and “security.”

These are just a few instances of huge power grabs, shows of naked force.  Each one by itself could be written off as nothing, an overreaction or overreach by overzealous bureaucrats, but together in concert they are much more.  They take on the mantle of a full blown tightening of the vise of tyranny on the citizens of the United States.

Now you might even be saying that I’m overreacting because I disagree with President Obama politically on nearly every issue, but it goes far beyond that.  I would disagree with these steps regardless of which party or President was in power at the time because I see these for the lure of power that they are and will be going forward.  That power becomes a drug for the person who wields it – they need it, and not to know that they have it, but they will need to exercise it in growing frequency in order to fulfill their craving for it.  The power will corrupt them.  Even if they began with the best of intentions, that power will destroy them.

The bureaucrats and politicians that come next will see the One Ring before them.  It will call to them, not with the clarion call of liberty, but with the sinister whisper of influence, authority, power, and strength, but those powers can only be wielded by the creator of the ring.

Who is the creator of the ring?

In Tolkien’s tale, Sauron, the Dark Lord, is the creator of the ring, but even he can be destroyed by it because he is ultimately dependent on it as well.  So did Sauron create the authority, power, and strength that were endowed into the ring or did he simply channel them there?  Let’s back this up to theology now… did Satan create the power that he yields?

The short answer is no.

God created Satan as Lucifer the angel.  Satan is dependent on God for his very existence.

One day the angelscame to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them.

Job 1:6

The authority, power, and strength that Satan holds were benefits of his created nature and were gifts of his position in the hierarchy of heaven.  It is Satan’s intent to disobey and rebel against God that corrupts those gifts.  Just as Satan rebels and corrupts those great and mighty gifts that God bestowed on him at his creation, the government – the politicians and bureaucrats, the authorities, the individual branches and big players have intents and purposes that run counter to the Constitutionally-directed role of the government and it’s relationship with the people altogether.  The small tyrannies summed together will corrupt even the best intended of those men and women because they will beg to be used… the temptation is too great.

THAT is why we rail against these overreaches.  THAT is why we sound the watchman’s call as the abuses and usurpations mount.

The enemy is not just at the gates.

The enemy is now within the city walls.

If we do not stand and fight and defeat these self-obtained powers, then we will lose whatever scrap of liberty that we have left on this Earth except for the hope that we have in Christ.

If power corrupts, we must rid ourselves of it.  If we do not want a corrupt government controlling every step we take in our lives, we must disrupt and dismantle it’s power to do so or we will find ourselves prisoners in our own country.

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

Ephesians 6:12

Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

James 4:7

Something Wicked This Way Comes

And the President claims that he knew nothing…

I call bull.  The President was involved DIRECTLY in the IRS targeting of Tea Party groups, conservative PACs, and Jewish PACs.

The President claims that he went to bed.  While that may in fact be true, it is a complete dereliction of duty regarding the Americans left to die in Benghazi on September 11, 2012.  In this case, I call bull also.  The truth is far more damaging – either the President willfully elected to deny support to sovereign US territory and US citizens under an active military attack, or was incapable of making a decision in the face of a live crisis.  The question that will be answered eventually is why.  Was the US State Department running guns via Benghazi and Turkey to the Syrian Islamist rebels against international law, a handful of treaties, and without the consent of Congress?

And now the Attorney General, Eric Holder, has committed perjury.  He either lied to Congress about his involvement with the search warrants he signed regarding James Rosen of Fox News or he lied to a judge (or rather three).  The search warrants listed Rosen as a co-conspirator or co-participant in the leak of classified information, but Holder testified to Congress that there was never the intent to prosecute.  Then why argue for a search warrant?  Why waste your time if you don’t intend to prosecute?  I call bull.  This Rosen issue follows the warrantless wiretapping of hundreds of members of the media.

Which narratives are left?

Benghazi – gun-running coverup?  Presidential incompetence and dereliction of duty?  Both are impeachable.

IRS – “punishing enemies” of the President? Top-to-bottom corruption of the tax-collection arm of the Federal government?  If Obama is indeed complicit, and having the IRS commissioner visiting the White House more often than three of the most common visitors who hold Cabinet-level positions combined looks terribly suspicious, then that is 100% Nixonian and impeachable.

Wiretapping – Fourth Amendment violation folks?  Justice Department corruption?  Holder has already proven a liar (as I outlined above), so we can not trust him to properly investigate himself.

Rosen – Political targeting again?  Anti-Fox News vendetta in the Administration?

The problem with each scandal is that it requires more than a modicum of civics knowledge to understand the underlying issues, motives, and precedents that will be set if such scandals are not pursued.

If we do not start seeing the connections between each scandal and drawing out the political motivations of EACH and EVERY scandal, then we will never fully expose the absolute threat to liberty and freedom that this administration has been and will be going forward if they are not stopped here and now.

 

Outrage and Thanks

In the darkest moments of life on this ball of dust, we can find moments to be thankful for to our Creator.

I am outraged that the value of life means so little that the alleged parent (they are not worthy of the respect that “mother” and “father” entail) actually dropped their helpless newborn down a toilet.

I am outraged that the entire world considers this child to be a miracle baby since it survived this attempt at postnatal abortion, but had the mother walked into a Chinese hospital weeks earlier and requested an abortion, she would have been granted one without question per that country’s reproductive limitations and dictates.

What significant moral leap must occur to assign miracle status to a baby just a few weeks older, still attached to the placenta, merely because it refused to die when it’s biological material co-donor decided that they didn’t want him?  Was the parent not just enacting their right to choose after the fact rather than before like abortionists encourage?

Thank God for small miracles – especially the kind that way 6.2 lbs, have black hair, and a little button nose.  Maybe little “59” will spur China to step away from their draconian policies which are causing this horrible degradation of the value of human life in their country.

 

 

 

Scouting

I grew up a scout.  I worked my way up from the first years of cub scouts all the way up to just short of an Eagle.  The only reason I didn’t finish my Eagle was that I was also a football player and after-school practices, game days, and Saturday film sessions dominated by time in a way that beat scouting.

Yesterday, a majority of voting delegates decided that scouting would become open to openly gay boys.  The issue of openly gay scoutmasters and adult leaders was tabled, but the camel’s nose is under the tent now and it is only a matter of time.

The problems with this decision are many.

Older boy scouts are looked up to by the younger ones.  Children are not generally well-founded morally, ethically, or spiritually in order to define right and wrong especially on a culturally divisive issue as sexual preference.  Confusion is easy to generate in teenagers and will be amplified by the disconnect between the words of the Boy Scout Oath and Law which no longer seem to apply in light of this decision.

Traditionally, churches have been the sponsors of scout troops across the country.  These delegates are rather short sighted in that the sponsorship and support that they have received from churches that still preach morality and Godly-living will dry up and wither away as those bodies of believers will refuse to support an organization that does not abide by the moral purpose it once did.

More so, that short-sightedness fails to take into account one other element, and that is men like me.  My boys are too young to join scouting for a few more years.  The problem is that the scouting I knew will cease to exist.  There are so few organizations that take a moral stance and will proclaim right and wrong.  The Scouts have always been inclusive of Catholics, Protestants, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, and atheists.  They have never forced a certain belief set, but they have insisted historically on a moral code of behavior that set Boy Scouts apart from non-scouts.  Without that code, the scouts are just a social group that teaches how to build fires, us a compass, and go camping.  Frankly, I can teach my boys just as well or better than anyone else how to do those things AND I can use those to teach right, wrong, good, evil, and the nature of God.

On my honor I will do my best
To do my duty to God and my country
and to obey the Scout Law;
To help other people at all times;
To keep myself physically strong,
mentally awake, and morally straight.

So what motivation do I have to say to my sons that joining the Scouts is a good idea anymore?

Why would I encourage my sons to join an organization that caved on one of it’s founding principles?

Honor?  There is no longer any. A group that violates it’s own oath of membership has no honor.

Duty? My duty is to God and country.

Mental awakeness?  There is none. There was no forethought in this decision.  There was no critical thinking applied.

Moral straightness?  By demanding none, the further graying of the lines of morality will continue.

I once was forced to decide between a sport that I loved and an organization that seemed to be waffling, but I did not then understand why or for what reason.  Now I am forced to decide what is best for my sons – my duty before God.  Instead of regret though, I am proud to proclaim that this former Scout will not abide this violation of the Scout Oath, as it no longer has any meaning for that organization going forward.

Training

An interesting question my wife posed the other day has me thinking.

Why do churches and other believers not spend more time in teaching not just what prayer is, but rather how to pray?

I’m not talking about your conventional routine prayers

There are even catchy acronyms for Christians to follow: PRAY (Praise, Repent, Ask, Yield), ACTS (Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication), FACTS (Faith, Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication, and others.

These guidelines show what we should pray and can even guide how we approach prayer, but how do you go about teaching someone how to pray?

How can you convey through words how to approach an omniscient God and not just focus on what you feel led to tell Him, but rather how to reciprocate and allow prayer to become that two-way conversation?

Considering that prayer is a spiritual discipline, it requires training and instruction.

Why aren’t churches stepping into this void and teaching people not just what to pray, but rather how to pray?

Terror in the Streets

As of now just about everyone who pays attention knows that there was a incident of “sudden jihad syndrome” in London yesterday where two men brutally murdered a British soldier.

What is being revealed today is that the two attackers did not attempt to flee or attack anyone else.  They waited about half an hour for armed police officers to respond to the scene of the murder where there was a brief standoff before the two suspects were wounded and incapacitated by the police.

During the half hour time-period, the video showing one of the terrorists spouting political rhetoric and walking about with brandished weapons and covered in blood was taken.

While this attack is brazen and frightening for Londoners, I noticed a few things.

One – even in London the police response is inexplicably lengthy and gave plenty of time for the terrorists to disappear and flee or cause mass casualties.

Two – (and this is commonly known) firearms are exceedingly rare in private ownership in Britain so there was no way for the citizenry to apprehend or detain these proven violent men without placing themselves at risk of great harm since one of the two was armed with a pistol and both were openly carrying knives.

Three – there are a number of men visible in the videos just across the street watching the two men. These men greatly outnumbered the two terrorists and could have overpowered and detained them forcefully if the group had decided to do so, yet they did not despite the barbaric nature of the initial act of violence.

Four – British women have bigger balls than British men.  A mother of two engaged the two terrorists in conversation to prevent them from getting more agitated.

Now my wife and I always joke that mothers especially are the biggest threat to violent people in the world because while husbands and fathers recognize their duty and responsibility to put their lives on the line and if necessary lay them down for their families; mothers have a greater responsibility to care and protect their children, which means that they will fight harder and more viciously in order to not just end the threat, but to walk away alive in order to continue caring for their children.

My only takeaway from this event, which is unfortunate for London and Britain, is that such an attack would likely end differently in the United States.  There is a different mindset here (as evidenced in the immediate aftermath of Boston, the tornadic devastation in Moore, and myriad other times).

Imagine such an attack in Richmond, Atlanta, Dallas, Cleveland, Colorado Springs, Phoenix, or Indianapolis.  Each of those states permits lawful concealed carry.  Each of these major metropolises has devoted law enforcement professionals that will not wait to assemble en masse in order to confront two armed attackers, but will charge in alone if necessary to stop an active attack.  Those attackers would not have been free for thirty minutes to do whatever they wished… they would have found themselves staring down the barrel of a gun, or many guns, quickly.  Whether they were armed vigilant citizens or police would not matter.

For a country where it used to be a legal requirement that all able-bodied men must train for three hours daily in the use of an assault weapon, this is an embarrassment.

 

 

Time to Abolish the IRS

The IRS internal investigation concluded six months prior to the 2012 Presidential election and was concealed from Congress (Daily Mail).

The official, Lois Lerner, that oversaw the division that processed tax-exempt organization applications has asserted that she has done nothing wrong or illegal and then invoked her Fifth Amendment right to not be forced to testify against oneself (FoxNews).

The IRS has failed to fulfill a House Ways & Means Committee demand for documentation (CNSNews).

The IRS has willfully lied to Congress, and the White House to the public via the media, about the depth and breadth of the politically-motivated targeting of conservative, Constitution-teaching, Jewish, and patriotic organizations applying for tax-exempt status.  The IRS is also walking around with blood-red hands from the political-targeted audits of prominent conservative donors and media personalities (Fox19).

The IRS from top to bottom is proving itself to be a partisan weapon to be unleashed on political enemies of whoever is in charge.  As such, it is detrimental to our free republic and itself has become a domestic enemy of these United States as it seeks to play by its own rules, use our own Constitutional protections to shield itself and it’s employees from inquiry, and to deny any and all who fall into their bad graces the same protections.

It has become time to eliminate the Internal Revenue Service completely.

 

Perfect Pitch

Sometimes I do my best thinking while I’m in the car.  This is my private time with God usually as two young children fill my ears and attention when I’m at home, and when I’m at work, it’s hard to focus for long stretches of time on Him.

Today a strange metaphor came to mind during this time that I want to share with you.

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

James 1:2-4

The trials in life are kind of like individual pitches in a baseball game.  Each pitch is an opportunity.  The pitch – fast, slow, sliding, curving, or sinking – must be quickly discerned (May the Lord help you if you’re facing a knuckleball thrower because it can do all three at the same time if that’s the case!).

Each of those trials is capable of blowing right by you untouched into the catcher’s mitt and striking you out at the plate.  Equally, each of those pitches represents an opportunity for you to individually shine.

Before you step in the batter’s box, you get your signal from the third base coach (the Spirit) who in turn is relaying the expectations and the game plan from the manager (God).

You step in the box and the pitcher starts his wind up.  Your eye tracks the pitcher’s arm and watches for the ball.  If your vision is clear then you can see the ball’s seams and “read the pitch.”  The spin and release point tell you whether it’s a sinker, slider, fastball, changeup, or curve and give you a fair idea of whether the pitch will be a ball or a strike.  Then and only then do you decide whether you should swing.

What makes the “read” hard for mankind is that our vision is not clear.  It is clouded because of the obstructions of sin, doubt, and unfaithfulness.

Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.

Matthew 7:3-5

When you can’t see the pitch, rarely can you hit it, and when you do, you usually hit it on the ground or pop it up sharply and get yourself out easily.  How can we see the pitch, the trial, for what it is and recognize what God wants us to do with it?

We have to admit our faults.  Our vision sucks.  His vision is perfect.  When we accept Christ into our hearts and place our faith in Him, He will start to heal our vision and turn it into His.  By trusting our coach on when to swing for the fences, to hit for contact, or to bunt as part of the game-plan, our vision will improve more as we know what pitches we should be looking for when we step up to the plate.  Our chance to really shine and put the ball in play increase as a result.

The pitches start coming.  You might hit a solid base hit, drop a bunt, hit a home run, or get yourself out on strikes, but even if you do, there will be another chance soon and you’ll get to step into the box again and look for your pitch once more.

 

Catering Churches – Fear of Offending

ABSOLUTELY. If you remove or neglect to speak and believe the whole Truth, than you deny it.

You see the symptoms of this everywhere. A compromise between the church and the world will destroy the church as good cannot coexist with evil. Abortion, divorce, the blurring of gender roles, homosexual relations, and other sin will not just creep in the door of the church, but spread as a cancer within once the church compromises it’s foundation on the whole, complete Word of God.

It is your job to police your own church. You must be able to root out the false truths that weasel their way in. You must know your faith. You must know the Truth, because the false teachers do not show up as insidious or nefarious evil men and women, but rather cloak themselves in self-righteousness, misunderstandings themselves, or in the language of the mainstream world.

When Christ called us to be “salt” and “light” in the world, imagine the metaphor that was being made. Salt and light are purifying agents – they are naturally antibacterial. The sin of the world is the infection.

Reality Of Christ

SHUUWhere are all the Christians? Are they still around? Do they have voices? Do they take action? Do they attempt to keep God a part of this world?

Why is it that liberal candidates win and churches are on rocketed decline? Why is it that abortion, drugs, promiscuity, and homosexuality have become the norm? Why aren’t the Churches standing against such things? Where are their actions? Where is their love? Why aren’t they teaching truth?

Sadly, the church today is no longer standing against wrong, or against injustice. Instead, they cater to people out of fear of possibly ‘offending someone’, because if they ‘offend’ someone, then…”they won’t go to church any longer, and if they don’t go to church any longer, then they won’t hear the Word of God, and if they don’t hear the Word of God, then they won’t be saved. So why ‘offend’ people, after all…

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Symptoms and Birthpains

I have struggled with speaking up on this issue.  My struggle was not one where I thought my positions were contrary to the Word of God.  It wasn’t because it was a difficult topic to address because if you have read this for any length of time, you’ll know that I am willing to say the harsh truth if necessary.  My struggle wasn’t with any person or group.  My struggle was with my own guilt – I am a sinner, and as I have written before, if you have broken God’s law once, you have broken all of it.

I hesitated to wade into this issue because I was clouded with anger over it, but I have recently realized that my angry was misplaced.  My anger was not wrong or sinful and I believe it was and is still a righteous anger.

What issue could have me so hesitant and angry all at once?

What issue would the world tell me I’m not allowed to have a valid opinion about because I lack the necessary anatomy to fully understand it from the right perspective?

Abortion.

Don’t stop reading now though. I am not going to wax for pages on this as others have already well-worn the Biblical arguments against it. I just want to ask a few simple questions.

Has abortion-on-demand had a cultural impact since it’s nationwide legalization and inception in the 1970s?

Has that impact been a cheapening of the value of life within our society?

Could that lessened value have a negative impact as the generation that is in the thirties or below have not known a country without such “convenience” at terminating life that does not fit into one’s “plans?”

Could that very loss of value that life has historically had within Western Civilization be the causal reason why men like Kermit Gosnell and Douglas Karpen feel that they can get away with the wholesale slaughter of viable infants, including those born alive, not in an act of surgical birth control, but of mass murder of the worst degree – infanticide?

How can the world say that I cannot take a stand against evil – against murder?

How can I not burn with righteous anger as the horrors of the Gosnell abortion case came to light?

Now what should we do about it?

There are some that believe we should picket outside of abortion providers’ offices.

Some believe that we should fight this battle in the legislature and judiciary.

Some believe that we should fight this battle in the court of public opinion.

I believe that while those tactics have their valid places, they will not succeed in the face of one simple fact.  The houses of horror that they are designed to counter will not be swayed by such temporal, human weakness.

Are you ready for the answer?

I wasn’t.

Love.

Not human love though as our love is tainted with selfishness, pride, and jealousy.

We must ask God to pour into us His love.  We must shine the light of Christ, the infinite, forgiving, all-consuming love of our Creator and our Savior on these clinics, on these men and women corrupted by the pervasive evils that they perform day in and out at the behest of women that are afraid.  They fear the consequences of past actions. They fear future encumbrances because they believe that they are entitled to something, whatever it may be.

You cannot fight evil with evil. You can only fight it with love, specifically the pure love of God.  You cannot fight evil with man’s laws, man’s protests, man alone cannot stand against evil.  If man tries to fight evil by himself, he will be undone because you cannot fight evil without exposing it to good.  The only source of good is God.

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

1 John 4:7-12

The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery.In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women.Now what do you say?”They were using this question as a trap,in order to have a basis for accusing him.

But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger.When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.

At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there.Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”

“No one, sir,” she said.

“Then neither do I condemn you,”Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”

John 8:3-11

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