Daily Archives: 26 Sep 2010

Sigh…

West Bank settlement

Jewish settlers released balloons and broke ground on a kindergarten in celebration Sunday as a 10-month construction slowdown expired, while U.S. and Israeli leaders tried to figure out how to keep Palestinians from walking out of peace talks over the end of the restrictions. After the slowdown ran out at midnight, there was no Palestinian statement about the future of the talks. The Palestinians asked for an Oct. 4 meeting of an Arab League body to discuss the situation, possibly giving diplomats an extra week to work out a compromise. Minutes after the expiration, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called on the Palestinians not to walk away, but instead to maintain constant contact “to achieve a historic framework accord within a year.” In a statement, Netanyahu said his “intention to achieve peace is genuine.”

No, the Palestinians should walk away. If Israel has no intention of halting settlement construction permanently it simply means that there is no wish for peace. Building on land which belongs, by international law, to someone else and then saying to the robbed ‘hey don’t walk off just because you’ve been driven off your land and we want to continue to build houses on that land.  You’re being unreasonable’ is stupidity incarnate. The Palestinians should walk away and the world should boycott Israel, its industries, its tourist trade, and its produce. Israel should be isolated. If it refuses to act as a citizen of the world and constantly ignores international law, it doesn’t deserve international support.

It’s A Bit Late to Organize Now, Moderates

There’s just 5 weeks till the election.  Or should I say, there are just 5 weeks till the day that people will go to the polls and vote for people who have promised the moon and who will only deliver dust (regardless of political affiliation).

But still, moderates are just now waking up (that’s the way moderates are, they always manage to wait until its too late and the loons on the fringes have already prevailed).

Galvanized by the lightning-in-a-bottle success of conservative “tea party” candidates, moderate Republicans and others in the political center are looking for ways to push back against what they see as an advancing tide of ideological extremism. The efforts are loosely organized and embryonic, but politicians, advocacy groups and others are piecing together a framework to promote moderate candidates and advance positions they say have been eclipsed by partisan sniping on the right and left. “Middle America is being ignored by Washington and the media. Centrists are desperate for a voice today; they feel entirely unrepresented,” said Mark McKinnon, a political strategist and former advisor to President George W. Bush. “The tea party has tapped into voter frustration and anger,” he said, “but does not represent millions of Americans in the vast middle.”

A day late and a dollar short.

Answering Your Letters

Dear Jim,

I sometimes find your tone a bit sharp.  Sometimes harsh.  Why?

Andrew

To which I reply,

Dear Andrew,

Thanks for writing.  You aren’t the first to suggest that my tone is somewhat brusque and in previous queries I’ve always said what I’ll now say to you- the times in which we live call for forthrightness of speech and directness of address.  Christianity is under assault, not from without, but from within.  People calling themselves Christians are peddling a false Gospel which can save none and which misleads many.  Emergent Christianity, Seeker Sensitive Christianity, Far Left Christianity (as exhibited in Episcopalianism), and Far Right Christianity (mostly exhibited by the heresy of Christian Zionism) all pander to the baser wishes of people rather than standing firmly on the Rock of Scripture.

The mamby pambyness of much modern Christian speech has achieved absolutely nothing.  It really is time, it seems to me, for Christians to stop being so afraid of everything and to stop being on the defensive and most certainly to stop accommodating the gospel to the mob.  It’s time for Christians to speak out against the false preachers and the manipulators and the money seekers and the liars which inhabit our Churches.  It’s time for Christians to engage society and politics as unflinchingly Christian and unashamed of the Gospel.  In short, it’s time for Christian theologians to excoriate heresy.

No one else seems to be doing it.  But someone has to.  And if it hairlips the devil, marginalizes me, or makes my friends on the left and right angry, so be it.  I shan’t stand before God on the Last Day and confess cowardice or an unwillingness to call a spade a spade.

My tone, then, reflects my true and authentic rage at the falsehood being passed off as Christianity.  When the situation changes, perhaps my mood will.  Until then, let him who has an ear, hear.  I won’t be sidetracked by pleas for tolerance when all that tolerance of heresy has ever gotten us is more heresy.  And loads of heretics.

I hope this explains my position clearly enough.

Yours,

Jim

Denial: Eddie Long’s Offense

The famed pastor of a Georgia megachurch said Sunday that he will fight allegations that he lured young men into sexual relationships, stressing that he’d be back to lead the church the next week. Addressing a New Birth Missionary Baptist Church sanctuary packed with thousands, Bishop Eddie Long neither discussed specifics of the lawsuits filed against him nor flatly denied the accusations. But he drew thunderous applause when he addressed his flock publicly for the first time since the first lawsuits were filed several days ago.

Told ya the place would be packed. Publicity for these sorts of people is good whether it’s good publicity or not. His ego must be in the third heaven. And told ya he would be supported. Cult-like religious leaders are always followed blindly. Think Jim Jones.

Long’s final remarks during the service invoked the biblical story of the small David doing battle with the gargantuan Goliath. “I’ve been accused; I’m under attack. I want you to know, as I said earlier, I am not a perfect man,” he said, briefly pausing for effect. “But this thing I’m going to fight.” “I want you to know one other thing, I feel like David against Goliath. But I got five rocks, and I haven’t thrown one yet.”

David… a curious choice, since it was David who murdered Uriah when he sinned with Bathsheba. I wonder who Long has in his sights.

Worst of all, his poor wife has to stand with him. Maybe the money and prestige are just too much to give up.

Still More Noah’s Ark Insanity

Noah's ark & friends

This time the Italians have found it

Here’s the letter they’ve sent out-

Dear All, after years of work, studies and risky expeditions, we have succeeded in locating the path that leads to the remains of Noah’s Ark on Mount Ararat. We would like to thank our fellow researchers for the material that they picked up for such purpose. We think it is in our duty to inform the authorities, the universities and media of the entire world, about our work. Given our limited power, we invite anybody who is interested to spread this information and to bring to light a Patrimony that belongs to the whole humanity. If the attached study in .ppt format does not open, you can see it on our website: http://www.noahsark.it/Path%20to%20the%20Ark%20.htm

Yours sincerely

Roberto Tiso
Azad Vartanian
http://www.noahsark.it

Yeah sure. They couldn’t have found it because I already found it in my back yard. I wish all these fraudsters would stop trying to bilk the gullible out of their hard earned money.

Dad the Cop Was Right: Underaged Kids Shouldn’t Be Having Sex

I applaud the San Jose cop who used ‘scared straight’ tactics to confront the boy who had sex with his stepdaughter.

Exclusive video captures the minutes leading up to a cop’s fake arrest of a San Jose teenager who had sex with his stepdaughter. The big question is does it show an officer abusing his authority or a father concerned about his teenage stepdaughter having sex with another minor? … The father took the video and now the family wants the video released saying it shows a San Jose police officer abused his authority when he found out their son had sex with the officer’s 14-year-old stepdaughter.

It shows no such thing. It shows the boy’s father actually joining in with the cop in an effort to get the kids to stop acting foolishly. Dad the Cop, I applaud you! I wish every parent cared enough about their underaged kids to teach them not to engage in sex.

San Jose police did say on Wednesday that both juveniles were cited for having sex with a minor. Those citations are likely in the hands of juvenile probation as a possible referral to the district attorney’s office. The district attorney says she is reviewing the case to see if the officer involved faces any criminal charges.

The officer shouldn’t face charges, the teens should.  Anyway, if it had been my daughter, the boy would have been much worse off.

Montana, Let The Monks Build their Monastery

I honestly don’t even know why this is an issue.  They own the land, they have the right to build on it.  Plus, it looks like it will be an awesome structure.

Ranchers in Montana need to get a grip and grow up. A Monastery is no threat to ranchers.

Plans by a group of Roman Catholic hermit monks to erect an outsized monastery in northern Wyoming have pitted neighbor against neighbor and aroused debate with religious undertones. At the center of the Wyoming controversy is a remote ranch where the Monks of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary of Mt. Carmel want to build a 144,000-square-foot French Gothic-style monastery and coffee roasting barn. The monastery will feature a church that seats 150, with one spire rising 150 feet. The proposal triggered a clash between ranchers who live miles apart, trying to protect their quiet, rural open spaces, and the hermit monks who live a secluded, Spartan life of prayer and meditation and are looking for more room to meet their expanding order and maintain their privacy. … The plan has cleared a planning and zoning board but still needs approval from Park County commissioners, who will discuss it on Oct. 5.

Again, if they own the land and have the proper zoning, what’s the issue?

They belong to an order rooted in the 16th century that requires they sustain themselves through mostly manual labor. They dress in handmade full length robes, sleep in small individual housing units called hermitages with no radio, no TV, no Internet. They raise and grow most of their own food, funding their operation by making and producing their own brand of coffee called Mystic Monk. They market mugs, bag clips, T-shirts, travel mugs and a CD of their Gregorian chants over the Internet and with mail-order catalogs.

I guess if they sell stuff online they must outsource that since they don’t do the web themselves. So I looked around and here’s their store. I think I’ll buy some stuff from them and support them.  Maybe one day I’ll be able to visit their awesome new Monastery too.  If Montana acts right.

Pastors Who Endorse Candidates From the Pulpit Are No Longer Pastors

They have become nothing but lackeys for a political party. They have abandoned their task as Shepherds and Prophets and they have turned their back on the Gospel.

And while they might think they are doing something bold and right and courageous, they are only denying God and their office and demonstrating their genuine lack of understanding of both the theological and pastoral task.

Pastors aren’t charged with getting in bed with the world- they are charged with standing opposite it as the representative of God, not of politicians or politics.

Pulpit freedom Sunday is only freedom to renounce the Gospel. Were they truly interested in defiance, their object wouldn’t be the IRS, it would be the very politicians who have lied to and deceived the American public.

This Isn’t Christianity- It’s Farce

And this isn’t a sermon, it’s a sick and demonic substitution for the proclamation of the Word of God. And if there were any Christians in the place who understood what Christianity, and worship, and preaching were, they would have stood up and walked out.

(HT: Michael Acidri on FB).