Passing the Faith through the Faithful

Passing The Faith Along

Passing The Faith Along

The shrinking birthrates among America’s Christian “faithful” are adding to the secularization of our nation and its’ growing “culture divide.” We are left with a declining workforce, along with a declining evangelism and a declining Christian worldview.

One positive response is that Christians tend to “choose life” and have more babies! Let secularists have their 1.3 baby birthrate, while those who value human life, the traditional family, and religious liberty gain the “fertility advantage” and become “fruitful” and  “mighty in the land” (see Psalm 112:1-2, 10).

The Bible offers guidance on what some have called the “cultural mandate.” It begins with a proper sense of the blessing of children—a lot of children. Large families were seen as a blessing, being loved and wanted for economic and social needs. When people and entire nations forget this sage wisdom and have too few children to even replace themselves, someone else will take charge.  A shrinking Christian population will not “inherit the earth” nor transform it “for the glory of God.”

Christians’ beliefs about the size of families are often shaped more by secular propaganda and personal preferences than our desire to have a family that makes a maximum impact for God. We are told that 47 percent of churchgoers are reported to want three or more children! But that means 53 percent want fewer or no children. Many want huge churches, but tiny families.

If the Lord tarries, we must seek to pass the baton of the faith through the families of the faithful! Children must be seen as the shapers of the future of our world. Our loving and caring for children honors God.

May our families be fruitful, fill the earth and help make a maximum impact for the glory of God!!

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Do you agree with Ben Carson?

ben-carson-facebookPresidential Candidate Ben Carson was recently interviewed on one of the Sunday news shows and asked if he could support a Muslim for President. He not only said “No,” but that he “would not advocate putting a Muslim in charge of this nation.” He then attempted to certify that was his position unless they clearly embraced our Constitution and “American values.”

Why did he make that distinction? Because traditional Muslims submit to a church/state theocracy, Islamic Sharia Law, that requires they surrender to its principles and practices above any national constitution and sees those who don’t agree with them and submit to its ideology as infidels, worthy of death. Sharia’s harsh demands and negative disciplines on gays, women and the subjugation of other religions are fundamentally incompatible with democracy and basic freedoms—just review how any of these concerns are handled in any of the Sharia-compliant, Muslim-dominated countries. Dr. Carson said he could not advocate for such an adherent to be President of the United States.

Of course, our “P.C. Culture”-commentators see Dr. Carson’s point as being bigoted and intolerant. After all, they say, Article 6 of the U.S. Constitution contains this prohibition of a “religious test”:

The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.

However, that prohibition is actually about the government not imposing a religious test after an election. Holding an office at the state or federal level cannot require a specific religion or lack thereof. Dr. Carson simply said, in response to a posed question, that he could not advocate nor vote for a Muslim to be President. In the same way, some on the left may not vote for Dr. Carson, because of his personal positions or religious ideology. This is how democracy is to work in America! And, consideration of candidates’ faith and values should influence voting.

Several days later, Ben Carson sought to clarify his position by reiterating: “Anyone who is running for president should embrace the Constitution and should place it above their personal beliefs. Anyone who can’t do that should not be running for the presidency.”

I agree. How about you?


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Iceland to Boycott Israeli Products?

Residential and commercial buildings stand on the city skyline in Reykjavik, Iceland, on Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013. Creditors of Iceland's three biggest failed banks are fighting for a waiver to krona controls imposed in 2008 amid risks pay-outs will be delayed beyond 2015. Photographer: Arnaldur Halldorsson/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Photographer: Arnaldur Halldorsson/Bloomberg via Getty Images

I can hardly spell it, but I recognize the name Reykjavik, as Iceland’s capital and the site of high-stakes diplomacy, back in 1986, between President Ronald Reagan and the Soviet Union leader, Mikhail Gorbachev.  Now, Reykjavik is in the news, not for Iceland’s alleged whale plundering but for its political correctness, in planning to boycott Israeli products.

Icelanders capital’s city council is discrete and selective by not boycotting any other country—not those who kill gays for being gay, declare women to be second-class citizens, or exploit poor Pakistani children in cruel and dangerous work environments. Countries run by genocidal dictators, missile-rattling tyrants, and narcissistic conquerors are exempted from Icelandic condemnation. Only Israel, the small, single, Jewish State, is to feel the cold of Reykjavik’s newly acquired moral sensibilities and alleged social justice. The modern leaders of this North Atlantic nation now want to boycott the only democratic nation in the Middle East, by following the wondrous example of anti-Semitism, set by Nazi Germany in the 1930s.

Refused admission and absorption by neighboring countries in the Arab world, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of those Palestinians who fled from the new nation of Israel in 1948, are made permanent victims by the Arab world and made to fester for generations, without “refuge,” in U.N. run “refugee” camps. As the Free Syrian Army (FSA) threatens strongman Bashar al-Assad for control of Syria, these Palestinian refugees have been caught in the deadly crossfire, across the border from Israel.

The Jewish State of Israel would permit Palestinians in Syria—there are an estimated 500,000—to return to the territories under Palestinian Authority control if they would give up any claims to return to Israel. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, rather than seeking to rescue his own Palestinian people, has said that it is better for them to die in Syria than give up their “right” of return.

Meanwhile, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi has taken the unprecedented step of allowing the Palestinian refugees to escape almost certain death in Syria, by proposing to resettle them in the Sinai Peninsula. Again, Abbas has said no. This Palestinian “leader” would rather see his people slaughtered in Syria than give up a “right” to replace the Jewish state, through resettlement in Israel proper.

One pundit has suggested that the Reykjavik city council might at least be consistent and also boycott all the advances Jews and Israelis have made in recent years in medicine and technology. Indeed, God has promised to bless those who bless the Jews and to curse those who curse them.

Do you think that includes boycotting them?


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Wedding Witness

Wedding KissWeddings are to be more than elaborate, bank-breaking, cultural events. For Christian believers, weddings are to be a public witness and commitment of a man and a woman to a life-long, covenantal relationship with God (Malachi 2:14-15 MSG).

Ultimately, weddings are to serve us as an earthly expression of the Bride of Christ and our Heavenly Bridegroom (Revelation 19:5-9 MSG). Because it is a serious matter, the minister warns, “What God has joined together, let no one separate.”

The prophet Malachi taught the importance of marital faithfulness and its relationship to “godly offspring” (2:15 LTB). Because of its negative effect on families, he declared that God hates divorce (2:16 LTB). These are harsh words, but divorce harshly affects not just the husband and wife, but any children who may come from the relationship, as well the extended families—for generations!

In this “post-Christian” era, we must do all we can to re-establish a biblical “culture of marriage” which will encourage, celebrate and protect marriages, along with the generations which follow after them.


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“Late Show” Truthiness

Stephen-Colbert-facebookStephen Colbert’s “Late Show” has premiered on CBS, replacing David Letterman, after 33 years.

In his prior role as a political satirist on The Comedy Channel, Colbert coined the term Wikiality.  A “wiki” is a process or document on the Web that anyone can add to or modify. And if enough users agree, it becomes “true.” Wikiality, then, is “reality as determined by a majority vote,” as when astronomers recently voted Pluto off their list of planets.

Colbert also has introduced another term to our modern culture, Truthiness. He describes it this way: “Truthiness is what you want to be true, as opposed to what the facts support. Truthiness is a truth larger than the facts which comprise it—if you cared about facts, which you don’t, if you care about truthiness!”

Taking “Truthiness” into a world of “Wikiality” allows a new theory of truth to insert itself into the way we view life. Truth becomes what the majority determine to believe it to be. With this kind of democratization of knowledge comes the democratization of truth! Fifty-one percent becomes the final arbiter of reality.

A Biblical worldview holds to absolute, objective truth. It doesn’t change. It is theocratic and not democratic.

Remember that the next time your friends question the Bible’s view of which sexual practices may be sinful or your employer wants you to welcome someone who is biologically different from you to use your gendered restroom.

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The Trouble with Trump

In 2012, Rdonaldtrumpepublican evangelicals and conservative Christians were told that we were “electing a president and not a pastor,” so voting for a wealthy, cultured, supposed conservative, who modeled our “family values” but whose Mormon faith was identified by many as a cult, was okay. Just deal with it!

Now, for the 2016 election, the party’s religiously-concerned members are being told by the current front runner’s supporters that we should get behind an unrepentant Presbyterian, whose favorite pastor (Norman Vincent Peal) died more than two decades ago. Although he claims to be Pro-life and the Bible to be his favorite book, he won’t or can’t quote a single verse from it.

Currently, nearly one in four of every likely Republican voter seems to be behind billionaire Donald Trump.

Frank Bruni’s recent article in The New York Times says polls show the flamboyant, alleged-misogynic tycoon to be “the preferred candidate among not just all Republican voters, but also the party’s vocal evangelical subset. He’s more beloved than Mike Huckabee, a former evangelical pastor, or Ted Cruz, an evangelical pastor’s son, or Scott Walker, who said during the first Republican debate: ‘It’s only by the blood of Jesus Christ that I’ve been redeemed.’”

Now, Donald Trump is nearing 70 and his children are ready to take over various aspects of the Trump Empire. Donald is looking for new challenges. Having toyed with the possibility of running for political office in years past, he has now made the jump to become the first self-funded, Republican candidate for the office of President of the United States.

Is our nation ready for an arrogant, authoritative leader, whose pompous words and pompadour hair we have not heard or seen before in modern politics?

More importantly, let us fervently pray that God’s design and desires will “be done on earth, as…in heaven.” (Matthew 6:9b)

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Christians Chased from the Public Square?

Family.generationsFaced with anti-religious Supreme Court rulings, harassment from aggressive same-sex activists and head-snapping flip-flops from politicians, how are Christians to respond in the public square?

Do we do as the opposition demands and retreat to rehearsing our values and views only within the four walls of a church building or in our whispered prayers, while cloistered in our closets at home? How can we privately show grace to hurting, broken people who may oppose us and, at the same time, publicly “stand up for Jesus” with our words and actions, in our increasingly secular society?

Perhaps we should first affirm that our Christian values are not mere opinions. They do not change with the “times,” so we can be on the “right side of history.”

Rather, as followers of Christ, our values are to be biblically based and not quickly changed. Personal convictions can guide our lifestyles, but the common values of a Christian culture should come from immutable “thus says to the Lord” commands and teachings of Scripture (1). Our personal beliefs, norms and standards should flow from there.

Followers of Jesus Christ (Who is the Way, the Truth and the Life) are to be “truth tellers” who know well the truths of the faith and are prepared (even in the public square) to present them in a peaceable –yet persuasive—fashion, with gentleness and respect (1 Peter 3:15).

(1) For example, read these chapters: Romans 12-14 and 1 Corinthians 5-9.



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