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America’s Fragile Empire

The United States is at its most vulnerable point since the Cuban Missile Crisis. Aside from the possibility of total annihilation due to global thermonuclear war, the United States is at its most fragile point in its entire history. This vulnerability is largely due to its dependence on the infrastructure of computer technology powered by the electrical grid. As we have seen in the recent super-storm, hurricane Sandy, when the power went out, many people were reduced to living in the dark and scrounging up what food and blankets they could for weeks. They were without power, without gasoline, and without transportation. They were miles from the nearest food supplies and electricity. From what I read, the response was far from immediate. Now imagine this situation hitting the entire Eastern Seaboard at one time, extending 300 miles inland to middle of the Appalachians. Power gone with not only no way to call in extra power crews, but no way to communicate and coordinate with them. But this time, the problem is not downed power lines, but every transformer blown and no way to replace them. Imagine food stores empty and no deliveries available or planned for weeks. Surely there would … Read more

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The Politics of Envy and a Culture of Greed

 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife… or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” –  Exodus 20:17 To covet is to desire to possess what rightfully belongs to another. It is not simply admiring what another has, but is the desire to take it. Covetousness is a form of greed. You don’t have to be rich to be greedy. You can be poor and greedy, and you can be poor and envy what others have.   We now have an entire political party dedicated to stoking the fires of envy and greed. It is called the Democrat party, and its chief strategy is intent on dividing Americans by stirring up envy towards the rich. It also appeals to people’s greed, because it promises to take what others have and give it to those who have “less.” This is covetousness, pure and simple, and that means the entire Democrat strategy is built upon a violation of the Ten Commandments: You shall not steal (take what belongs to another) and you shall not covet (desire to take what belongs to another). Anything built upon the evil of sin cannot be good. I am a populist. The fact … Read more

Strategies for Leaving The PC(USA) with Property Intact

The latest rulings by the supreme judicial committee of the Presbyterian Church(USA) have made an absolute mockery of their Book of Order and the votes of the General Assembly. The attempt to exert absolute control over the local churches gives lie to the appearance of tolerance that liberals so much advocate. If you disagree, you are still forced to accept the views of the elitist bureaucrats.  Lately the GAPJC (General Assembly Permanent Judicial Commission)  has ruled in 3 cases which void any ruling of the General assembly as a whole, while threatening to take the property of any presbytery or church that wants to leave over matters of conscience.   If you want to leave, I have some strategies for you. If your presbytery wants to leave, quickly vote to relinquish all presbytery claims to church property to the respective churches, then vote to leave the denomination as a presbytery. When the synod for comes in with an administrative commission to remove the presbytery leaders, it will be too late.   For an individual church: give all your endowments away to valid missions and ministries, indebt your buildings, and then see if the presbytery still wants them. Walk away if they … Read more

Why Atheists Don’t Exist (Part 1)

Why Atheists Don’t Exist  or… Atheist Arguments that don’t make sense.  (Part 1) 

Compromised by Immorality

Human opinion and contemporary cultural values have become as authoritative as scripture; whether that be political or moral. As a result, our debates, have degenerated into mere political majority rule. But God ‘s Truth is not decided by majority vote, but discerned by seeking the voice of God in His revealed Word.

What then does it mean to be a Presbyterian?

  ‘What then does it mean to be a Presbyterian?’ Posted Monday, November 7, 2011  in the Presbyterian Layman What does it now mean to be a Presbyterian?  Every country club, civic association or condominium, for that matter, has rules of organization, statements of principle and codes of conduct to which members must adhere. Every religion has tenets of faith by which members define themselves and their beliefs in contrast to the values of other religions, cultures, governments and groups. Reading through the new Form of Government (FOG), I have to ask, what makes anything about the new PCUSA distinctly Presbyterian? When I was in seminary, aside from a basic adherence to the great confessions of the church, a partiality to Calvinism was part of the distinctiveness of Presbyterianism, in contrast to the doctrines of the Methodists, Catholics and Lutherans. But I think the new FOG is foggy to say the least.  Take this section for example: In Christ, by the power of the Spirit, God unites persons through baptism regardless of race, ethnicity, age, sex, disability, geography, or theological conviction. There is therefore no place in the life of the Church for discrimination against any person. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) … Read more

A Possible Solution to Illegal Immigration

Illegal Immigration Myth – Jobs American’s Don’t Want   While visiting Cape Cod last year, we were approached by an independent painting contractor. He asked if we had many illegal immigrants near Pittsburgh, PA where we live. I told him that we had very few and asked him “Why?”   He said, “I am losing all my bids on house painting here because I charge a fair price, but I pay Social Security and Workman’s Comp for all my employees. But I’m losing all my bids to people who hire illegal immigrants and pay them under the table. I can’t make a decent living here… “ That one instance explodes several myths about illegal immigration: Myth#1 – Illegal immigrants only take the jobs that no one else wants. Truth: The hiring of illegal immigrants by business allows them to pay lower wages to undocumented workers, who cannot complain, and to pay wages that no US citizen can live with, especially when the US worker has to pay taxes, Social Security, Medicare tax, and workman’s comp. In truth, illegal immigrants  lower the wages for all Americans by allowing businesses to hire under the table.  There are plenty of workers who would be willing … Read more

What’s With Paul & Women? – Book Review

What’s With Paul & Women?  By Jon Zens 1 Timothy 2:11-12 has been used as a “clear” mandate to silence women in the church for over 1500 years. In What’s With Paul & Women? Jon Zens exposes the fallacies of this interpretation, and opens up the meaning of 1 Timothy 2:9-15 using insights gleaned from the Artemis-saturated Ephesian culture where Timothy was left to stand against false teaching (1:3). Going beyond 1 Timothy 2, this book covers the major issues in gender inequality with three Appendices: one on the Ephesian social world in which 1 Timothy was written, another on 1 Corinthians 14:34-36 and an extensive review of John Piper’s What’s the Difference? Manhood & Womanhood Defined According to the Bible. If 1 Timothy 2:11-12 and 1 Corinthians 14:34-36 have puzzled you, What’s With Paul & Women? will help in your quest to discern the mind of the Lord as the gender debate continues. I was hoping this book would be better than it is.  Jon Zens raises a lot of good points and issues, but makes a mess of his argument, relying too heavily on an untenable translation of the Greek verb tense as a pivotal point of his … Read more

1950’s Church Models vs. Today’s Culture

Jeff Harris, a friend of mine and a former PC(USA) pastor who has started a new church in Butler, PA  called Crossroad Community, did a very good summary of the problems with post-World War II churches trying to do outreach with 1950's methods in today's culture.  There has been such a dramatic cultural shift in the United States that the culture no longer assumes or respects a Christian worldview. And also, the things that the current generation values are significantly different than the values produced by a corporate business model  that was characteristic of the 1950's and 60's.   This table below is a summary of the different values and shows the need to adjust our methodology of outreach and evangelism in order to reach the current generation. Those churches that rely upon the old models will be frustrated if not left behind. The methodology that worked in the 1940's and 50's will never work today.  Old Church Model Core Values 1950-1960 Era New Church Model Core Values 2010-2020 Era Faith   Fellowship   Family Biblical Instruction (Faith) Prayer (Faith) Relational (Fellowship/Family) Caring Ministry (Family) Transformation (evangelism, spiritual formation) Old Cultural Setting New Cultural Setting External Culture External culture (society) … Read more

An Appeal to My Fellow Presbyterians

Come Out of Her – Leave the Dead to Bury Their Own Dead! In a debate, if we do not agree on what is truth or how to discover truth and how to determine what truth is, how can we ever decide who is right  and who is wrong?  If I say, “Truth derives from God’s revealed Word,” but you say, “All truths are relative and depend upon the individual… whatever a person believes is true for them,” then how can we ever agree on anything? Will we not be talking past one another? “Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?” Amos 3:3, NKJV. “Then I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, so that you do not take part in her sins, and so that you do not share in her plagues; for her sins are heaped high as heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities,” Revelation 18:4, 5, NRSV.   There are many Presbyterian pastors, churches, and laity who are now wondering what they should do. The confessing church, made up of the conservative and biblically faithful believers, has been filled with grief, disbelief, and dismay. They finally lost the majority vote … Read more

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