This Thanksgiving season

This Thanksgiving season

One of the favorite and more familiar passages of Scripture is the 23rd Psalm. In it King David uses two images or metaphors to focus his thanksgiving for each day of his life:

  1. The Lord as Shepherd, who cares for the sheep, providing for their needs, guiding them and protecting them (vv. 1-4), and
  2. The Lord of Hosts, who cares for His guest at a feast in his honor (vv. 5-6), showing gracious hospitality and generous provision.

Of all the wonderful promises God gives us in this Thanksgiving Psalm, verse five is unique and unusual: “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over.” Here, the Lord of Hosts is described as setting a banquet table for us, spread with wonderful food—in abundance! This feast is prepared, in front of our “enemies.”

In biblical terms, there are two kinds of enemies: the demonic kind and the human kind. In this psalm, David is first referring to the demonic powers and principalities. Often these evil enemies use people in our lives, which have become their tools to make us miserable! The devil may target us physically, psychologically, or even spiritually and then stir up trouble for us among our human enemies.

David describes both classes of enemies as being Continue reading

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Making America Good Again

trump-pence-hands-raisedIndiana Governor Mike Pence stood before a boisterous crowd, in New York City in the early morning of November 9, to introduce the president-elect. The born-again Christian politician said, “I come to this moment deeply humbled, grateful to God for his amazing grace,” before thanking his family for their support and then thanking the American people “for placing their confidence in this team and giving us the opportunity to serve.”

Then, without great affectation, he introduced the president-elect, “…whose leadership and vision will make America great again. It is my high honor and distinct privilege to introduce to you the President-elect of the United States of America, Donald Trump.”

And, so it has been throughout this most unusual candidacy. God and Trump were frequently blended in discussions, decisions, and destinies. The “Evangelical vote” became a public factor in this political battle, somewhat like the Moral Majority had more than two decades before. According to ABC News, this election had the largest Christian turnout to a presidential election in our nation’s history.

With Trump’s intemperate texting, salacious comments about women, and his many arrogant, braggadocios ways, his connection to the members of the religious right seems confusing and misplaced. Christian conservative leader James Dobson tried to explain the dichotomy when he said he believed Trump was “a baby Christian.”

Were it not for Trump’s concurrent conservative views favoring faith, family, and religious freedoms, there probably would not be any favorable coalition. But, even the relationships which have developed have to be viewed with concern and  Continue reading

Posted in 2016 Elections; Trump, Biblical Worldview, Human Life, Pro Marriage, Pro-Family, Pro-Life, Pro-Religious Freedoms | Leave a comment

God’s People Cannot be Silent

I’m writing this brief blog to ask you to please make sure you VOTE tomorrow, November 8.

This is perhaps the most critical, national election of our lifetimes. The consequences of who is elected to the Executive and Congressional openings will affect decades of critical decisions from the non-elected Supreme Court.  Perhaps, that is why Franklin Graham is calling this election “A Supreme Decision.”

franklin-graham-bgeaFranklin, Billy Graham’s son and President of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and the Christian social agency Samaritan’s Purse, has said, “In the last presidential election, it’s estimated that 20-30 million Christians stayed home. We can’t let this happen again! The future of our nation is riding on this election: religious freedom, the Supreme Court, protecting the unborn and our families, and so much more. The Christian voice needs to be heard on November 8.”

In case you thought there has seemed to be some main-stream-media bias in the news reporting this election cycle, THIS REVIEW OF RELATIONAL REALITIES MIGHT SOLVE THE PUZZLE.

  • ABC News executive producer Ian Cameron is married to Susan Rice, National Security Adviser.
  • CBS President David Rhodes is the brother of Ben Rhodes, Obama’s Deputy National Security Adviser for Strategic Communications.
  • ABC News correspondent Claire Shipman is married to former Whitehouse Press Secretary Jay Carney
  • ABC News and Univision reporter Matthew Jaffe is married to Katie Hogan, Obama’s Deputy Press Secretary
  • ABC President Ben Sherwood is the brother of President Obama’s Special Adviser Elizabeth Sherwood
  • CNN President Virginia Moseley is married to former Hillary Clinton’s Deputy Secretary Tom Nides.

Do you think there might be a little bias in the news and the under-reported cover-ups???

If you are not registered to vote, it may not be too late, since some states allow you to register and vote on the same day. Find out if your state is one of them.

Also, in California, several ballot initiatives have moral and safety consequences for us, our children, and our grandchildren. Propositions 62 and 66 would each change how we deal with convicted murderers. Also of concern is Proposition 64, which seeks to legalize marijuana for recreational use by adults. You can review my earlier blogs about these matters, by clicking the related links above.

God’s people cannot be silent during “such a time as this” (Esther 4:14, NKJV).

Franklin Graham, who led prayer rallies in front of the capitol buildings in all 50 states, invites YOU to join him in prayer live on Facebook at 9 p.m. ET TONIGHT, November 7.

Plan now to join thousands—even millions—of other believers TONIGHT, to pray for all who are or seek to be “in authority” over us and for the renewal of our biblical values, in this great land! Encourage your loved ones to pray, too, by sharing this graphic on social media:

Posted in 2016 Elections; Trump, Biblical Worldview, Pro Marriage, Pro-Family, Pro-Life, Pro-Religious Freedoms | Leave a comment

The Pot Proposition

As I said in a prior post, “daunting dilemmas face concerned state voters this year—ranging from abolishing the death penalty to banning plastic bags at grocery stores.”

I explained that California’s constitution provides for citizen-initiated ballot proposals and this year’s 17 propositions include several hot-button social issues, with moral implications.

Having written about Propositions 62 and 66 and the death penalty/capital punishment, I will now continue to share my viewpoints on several of these initiatives, in this and, perhaps, future blogs. Today, I speak to California’s “stinky” Proposition 64, the “Adult Use of Marijuana Act.”

marijuana-harms-childrenThis libertarian-based initiative will legalize marijuana for use by adults while collecting taxes on its sales and cultivation, both at the state and local levels. While “pot” was previously grown in urban areas in “pot houses” by “pot-heads,” this proposal would legitimatize the recreational use of the smelly weed and establish standards for its various derivative products.

The new tax revenues would be allocated for specific purposes. Though the users are supposed to be adults, 21 years of age or older, 60% of the tax revenues would be allocated for “youth programs—including substance use disorder education, prevention, and treatment.” This acknowledges the toll this supposed benign bud actually takes on the yet developing brains and lungs of teens and young adults, especially since today’s stuff is way more potent than it used to be.

Twenty percent of the “sin tax” would go to “clean up and prevent environmental damage resulting from the illegal growing of marijuana. And, the final 20% would be granted for (1) programs designed to reduce driving under the influence of alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs and (2) a grant program designed to reduce any potential negative impacts on public health or safety resulting from the measure.”

Those who argue against Proposition 64 ( ), in California’s Official Voter Information Guide, explain “five huge flaws” which Continue reading

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A Life and Death Matter

go-voteAs usual, presidential politics have overshadowed significant battles at the state levels. But, daunting dilemmas face concerned state voters this year—ranging from abolishing the death penalty to banning plastic bags at grocery stores.

California’s constitution provides for citizen-initiated, ballot proposals. This year’s propositions number more than sixteen and include hot-button social issues, with moral implications.

Please allow me to share my viewpoints on several of these initiatives, in this and a future blog. I will start with this year’s competing propositions concerning the death penalty. Whichever proposition gains the most votes will become California’s new law on this important moral issue.

Proposition 62 repeals the death penalty for first-degree murder and replaces it with life imprisonment, without the possibility of parole. This would be retroactively applied to the 748 condemned prisoners currently on death row, in various stages of costly appeals and seemingly endless petitions.

According to the state’s Voter Information Guide, “Prosecutors, law enforcement, and murder victims oppose Proposition 62 because it jeopardizes public safety, denies justice and closure to victim’s families, and rewards the most horrible killers.” The formal argument against the initiative goes on to state, “California’s death row inmates include the killers of:   Continue reading

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Polarizing Politics

PRAY for our Elections

PRAY for our Elections

The Bible is God’s communication of truth to us. It was meant to be both reliable and readable. So, I should not have been surprised when reviewing some familiar passages of scripture in a newer translation—the New Century Version (NCV)—that this very readable translation communicated new “truth” to me.

In viewing Galatians 5:22-23, which shares about the “fruit of the Spirit,” I was prompted to review the context, as well, and found the preceding verses (19-21) stated the familiar “works of the flesh” as “the wrong things the sinful self does.” These verses categorized sexual sins, sins connected with pagan religion, sins of temper, and sins related to drunkenness.

Among the wrong things listed relating to temper were these: “…making people angry with each other, causing divisions among people…” I was reminded of all the negative advertising, tweeting, and debates we’ve endured this election year from political candidates and their surrogate speakers.  Some seem intent on polarizing people for political gain by “making people angry with each other, causing divisions among people…”

Let’s see these “polarizing politics” for what they really are: “works of the flesh.” It is not something in which God’s people should be engaged. Verse 25 says “We get our new life from the Spirit, so we should follow the Spirit.” A new walk must match our new life and talk, all to please the Lord!

The real issues we face as a nation are Continue reading

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Trump and Clinton were Rude, Crude, and Lewd

donaldtrumpBoth Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton were reported this past week to have temperaments that are unsavory and unsuited for the presidency and to have made remarks and actions (more than a decade ago) that were rude, crude, and lewd.

First, Linda Tripp, who you may remember as a witness in the mid-90s Clinton-Lewinsky scandal and impeachment trial, was interviewed on Aaron Klein’s radio show about her days as a government employee in the White House.

“In the Clinton White House there was endless screaming,” she recalled. “[There was] constant vulgar profanity on the part of both the President and the First Lady. And it’s hard for me to refer to her as the First Lady, frankly.” There were rumored reports that “hard objects” had been thrown at the president!

Then, in a Friday “news-dump,” there were reports and recordings of Donald Trump talking with an entertainment reporter about his insatiable attraction to beautiful women. In “locker-room banter” he claimed to have kissed and groped many women, including the female host of the show, “and she was married!”

After his campaign released a preliminary effort to belittle the incident, Trump actually acknowledged “it was wrong” and apologized on camera. It may have been too little and too late!

The Bible says, “out of the heart, the mouth speaks.” These character issues with both candidates will undoubtedly be reviewed again (and again) in the second presidential debate Sunday night, with its “town hall” format.

Meanwhile, the Bible instructs believers that some things are “not fitting” for them: “…neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting…” (Ephesians 5:3-5). Let us, who “walk in the light as He is in the light,” have discernment and discipline in these dark days.

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