Wednesday, February 27, 2008

WW--We Should Get Rid Of Inheritance

~It’s contrary to the spirit of capitalism, where each person earns his or her own way.
~This is just in-family welfare.
~Why should the children of wealthy parents win the lottery while the children of poor parents get punished for their parents.
~This would allow children to truly live on their own merits.
~In fact, what we ought to do is provide a 100,000 stake to each person at the age of 18 out of all the proceeds raised from creating a total inheritance tax. That would be both fair and also an excellent equalizing opportunity for everyone.
~The children of wealthy people are spoiled by having the money.
~Look at the prodigal son.
~The children of people who earn a lot of wealth consistently lose it because they are given everything. Depriving their parents of the chance to spoil them this way is a very loving thing.
~If you know you aren’t going to be getting it, there is no family squabble about who gets what and how much.
~Also, there’d be no fakery and lying about how you feel toward potentially wealthy people.
~The consumption of people trying to die broke would be great for the economy.
~“I’m spending my children’s inheritance” would go from being a noxious bumper sticker to being excellent for the GNP.
~If you’re dead, how can you have any claim to how the stuff gets disposed?
~Jesus told the rich young ruler to sell everything he had and give it to the poor. Why should we do any differently?
~Contributions to charity will be much higher. One of the reasons charities have taken a fairly quiet role in this debate is they know a large portion of their funds come directly from people trying to avoid giving the money to the government.
~The rich/poor gap is inherently unfair and disastrous to covetousness and envy.
~Democracy totally depends on equality, and when you have entrenched financial interests, you become an oligarchy or an economic aristocracy rather than a democracy.
~God owns it all anyway. If the government wants to take it, so be it. Render unto Caesars’s, right?
~How is letting them have the joy of earning it a poor preparation for Christianity?
~How tempting is it for parents to use inheritance as a form of control and coercion?
~How does knowing it’s coming affect your life decisions? You know there’s a vast safety net over you.
~Similarity to affirmative action? You never know for sure if it was you or if it was your lucky parentage. And no one else knows, either. But everyone assumes the worst.

Bible references: Gen 25:24-34, Num 27:1-11, Num 36:1-13, Ecc 7:11-12, Prov 13:22, Luke 15:11-32, 1 Peter 1:1-5

Links on inheritance:
, Inheritance Tax at the State Level by Wikipedia
Should Kids Be Left Fortunes, Or Left Out? by USA Today
Should You Leave It All To The Children? by

Estate Taxes: An Historical Perspective by Gary Robbins at Heritage Foundation
Now Is (Still) The Time To Repeal The Estate Tax by William Beach at Heritage Foundation
The Economics Of The Estate Tax by Joint Economic Committee of Congress
Estate Tax Repeal: Costly Windfall For The Wealthiest by Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
Grave Robbers: The Moral Case Against The Death Tax by Edward McCaffery at Cato Institute
Long Live The Estate Tax by Bill Gates Sr. and Chuck Collins at The Nation
Estate Tax Debate Hinges On Money, Morality at Christian Science Monitor
Latest News On The Estate Tax at

United For A Fair Economy
Choking On The Silver Spoon

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Theological Tuesday

~Bible Stories 7: Abraham and Isaac (Genesis 22)
~What can churches learn from MLMs?
~What’s the right way to pray?
~Would you describe watching television as an act of worship?
~Evaluate that metaphor: Salvation is like raising Lazarus from the dead.
~What good does it do for the Bible to be infallible if it’s read by sinners who are?
~Is God a good parent? Is it ever too late to turn back to God?

Monday, February 25, 2008

Sermons From Insects?

The Bible tells us that on Day 5 and 6 of Creation, God made all the things that fly in the air, creep on the ground, and swarm in the waters. That would seem to pretty much cover the vast category of insects. The question is, if we believe that God created the world in order to express Himself and to reveal Himself to us, have we ever looked at this category of creatures as something educational rather than as pests? If you had to teach something about God using insects, spiders, crustaceans, or worms, what would you teach? Here are some examples to consider: earthworm, tick, scorpion, ant, bee, mosquito, centipede, fly, mantis, spider, cockroach, butterfly, mite, moth, locust, termite, grub, cicada, cricket, grasshopper, crab, shrimp, okay that’s enough to start.

Bible references:
Gen 25:5, Exodus 8:16-31, Exodus 10:1-19, Exodus 16:20-24, Exodus 23:38, Num 13:33, Deut 1:44, Deut 7:20, Deut 28:38-39, Deut 32:13, Lev 11:22-23, Josh 24:12, Judges 6:5, Judges 7:12, Judges 14:8, 1 Sam 24:14, 1 Sam 26:20, 1 Kings 8:37, 2 Chr 6:28, Job 4:19, Job 13:28, Job 17:4, Job 21:26, Job 24:20, Job 25:6, Job 39:30, Psalm 22:6, Psalms 78:45-46, Psalms 81:16, Psalms 105:31-34, Psalms 118:12, Prov 6:6, Prov 30:15, Prov 30:25, Eccl 10:1, Eccl 12:5, Isaiah 7:18, Isaiah 14:11, Isaiah 33:4, Isaiah 40:22, Isaiah 41;14, Isaiah 50:9, Isaiah 51:8, Isaiah 66:24, Jer 46:23, Jer 51:14, Hosea 5:12, Amos 7:1, Jonah 4:7, Joel 1:4, Joel 2:6-10, Joel 2:25, Micah 7:17, Nahum 3:16, Matt 3:4, Matt 6:19, Matt 23:24, Mark 1:6, Mark 9:44-48, Luke 12:33, Rev 9:3-7

Links on insects:
Insect by Wikipedia
Arthropod by Wikipedia

Insects by
Insects mentioned in the Bible by

Ethics: Does Morality Require God?

“Religion is the single most potent source of morality, and, since an immoral populace will eventually destroy itself, a civilization without religion cannot survive very long.”

“But I don’t think you need God in order to be good. Many atheists and non-religious folk live very decent lives. In fact, I think it’s better to be good simply for the sake of being good, not because you’re scared of some judgmental fairy tale in the hereafter. That’s just fear, not goodness. Besides, are things right because God commands them, or does God command them because they’re right? If they’re right because God commands them, that’s just divine relativism. If He commands them because they’re right, then what do you need God for? All you need is to know what’s right since He’s just the announcer, not the author.”

How would you respond to this most fundamental of arguments?

Bible references: Matt 7:21-23, Luke 13:22-29, John 15:1-5 and
Love commandment and more references by

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Various Current Events

Barkley calls conservatives "fake Christians" by
Muslim burial rites clash with Connecticut laws by Boston Globe
Woman sues after exclusion from golf tourney by Boston Globe
Parents oppose new math approach by Washington Post
Man's crusade to stop complaining by Christian Science Monitor
How republicans may sink Obama by Christian Science Monitor
US: Raul Castro "Fidel Light" by CBS News
Financial woes force church to sell private jet by
When the magic fades (Opinion) by NY Times
Pastor opposes school "sex club" by
Pakistan victors want dialogue with militants by NY Times
In Havana, few expect change by NY Times
Toshiba concedes defeat in DVD format battle by NY Times
Twilight of the dictators (Opinion) by NY Times
Chance for Pakistan (Opinion) by NY Times
Costs vs. benefits by Walter Williams,
I don't think, therefore I am by Mike Adams,
Schools to teach evolution as theory by Florida Sun Sentinel
Michelle Obama's comments under fire by USA Today
Michelle Obama clarifies remark by Fox News
Patrick: Charge against Obama "extravagent" by Boston Globe
Whistle-blower site shut down by San Francisco Chronicle
Stifling online speech (Opinion) by NY Times
Light at night linked to breast cancer by Washington Post
Jordan arrests eight evangelists by Jerusalem Post
Oxford spends $4 mil to study belief in God by
Cities to go dark for global warming awareness by Fox News
McCain's confidence in ethics risky by NY Times
NY Times revisits McCain rumor by Fox News
McCain calls report untrue by
McCain campaign's facts on NY Times story by
Missile strikes falling spy satellite by NY Times
U.S. missile hits toxic satellite by BBC News
For Muslim students, debate on inclusion by NY Times
Biggest beef recall ever (Opinion) by NY Times
Woman changes name to "Fishinghurts" by
Serb protestors burn embassy by Reuters
NFL allows church Super Bowl parties by Christian Post
Jordan expels Christians for preaching by Christian Post

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

WW--People Shouldn’t Read The Bible For Themselves

~Most people don’t have the sort of time it takes to run a family, a business, pray, serve, and also study the Bible properly.
~If everyone could read the Bible, why would we need pastors, evangelists, apostles, etc.?
~Which translation should the individual read?
~The Ethiopian Eunuch needed Phillip to explain it to him.
~Without the Holy Spirit, it’s hopeless to try to understand the Bible anyway.
~Jesus had to explain the Old Testament on the road to Emmaeus
~The Pharisees knew the Bible, what good did it do them?
~Gives the impression that knowing the Bible is more important than knowing God.
~It just leads to a thousand private opinions and divisions
~People don’t know the original languages, the cultural context, the history, or even just enough of the whole Bible to properly understand any individual passage
~People rip things out of context
~Ever since the Reformation, no one knows what the Bible says anymore.
~Gosh, one partially wrong Catholic Church or 30,000 partially to gravely wrong Protestant churches?
~It leads people to want to become teachers, but James warns us to not become teachers.
~Even Peter admits that much of what is written by Paul is difficult to comprehend, and he was an Apostle!
~Paul warns Timothy and Titus against controversy and vain discussions, and certainly there is more of this now that everyone has a Bible than ever there was before.
~Insecurity and uncertainty in the new believer with so much controversy.
~If so, does this mean that all Christians who didn’t have access to it or weren’t literate were somehow doing Christianity wrong?
~All too many Christians are educated way beyond their activity level.
~If it weren’t for private Bible reading, then all the ridiculous Wacky Wednesday arguments wouldn’t be so easily made.

WW--America’s Nothing To Be Proud Of

~Michelle Obama isn’t proud of it, why should you be?
~Pride is a sin, after all.
~This is the one thing upon which conservatives and liberals agree.
~We had slavery, and we have racism.
~We oppressed the native Americans.
~Poverty, lack of health care, and homelessness.
~Massive national debt.
~Approximately 50% taxation.
~1.3 million abortions a year.
~America is synonymous with materialism.
~We’ve lost our moral compass.
~Pornography is everywhere.
~The nuclear family is disintegrating.
~Sexual immorality is rampant.
~Drug use is widespread.
~Blasphemy and dishonoring authorities is a popular sport.
~We are falling behind in academic competitiveness.
~Television, not Christianity, is our national religion.
~We do not suffer from a plague of respect, civility, intelligence, compassion, honor, decency.
~We are very negatively perceived around the world.
~Pride and arrogance.
~We abuse our massive power.
~We have propped up many dictators and paved the way for failed states.
~Family, church, media, education are all problematic.
~Only 50% of Americans vote in the major elections.
~New York and San Francisco are not aberrations, they are the future.
~Witness our entertainment
~The environment

~Britney, Lindsay, Paris, and Madonna

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Theological Tuesday

~Bible Stories 6: The Fall of Man (Genesis 3:1-24)
~Is it ever too late to turn back to God?
~Click here to tell Andrew what you think on any of these topics.
Is saying, "Oh my God," sinful?

Bible References: Psalm 19:14, Matt 5:34-37, Matt 7:21-23, Matt 12:33-37, Matt 15:11-20, Mark 7:6-8, Luke 6:46, Romans 2:21-24, Ephesians 4:28-32, Ephesians 5:1-6, Col 3:5-8, 2 Timothy 2:19, James 1:19-21, James 3:1-12, 2 Peter 2:17-20, Rev 2:12, Rev 14:1

Deuteronomy 5:11 parallel translations by
Cool or crass: debate goes on by
Taking God's name in vain? by
Commonplace or controversial? by
Discussion thread by Yahoo Answers
The Third Commandment by Catechism of the Catholic Church
What Does the Third Commandment Mean? by
The Third Commandment by Church of God Daily Bible Study
The Third Commandment by Teen Bible Study Discussions
What Ten Commandments Really Mean by Bethel Church of God
The Third Commandment by Fathers For
Cuss Control Academy
Why Children Swear by Elizabeth Pantley
Creative Swearing
Profanity: A Biblical Assessment by Wayne Jackson
The Plague of Profanity by Wayne Jackson
George Washington's
Order on Profanity

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Various Current Events

Many tax rebates will go to creditors by Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Obama wins 3 states, Huckabee 2 by Christian Science Monitor
Nebraska: Electric chair is torture by CBS News
Kidnappings of US citizens on rise by San Diego Union Tribune
Many obstacles to digital TV reception by NY Times
Hate springs eternal (Opinion) by NY Times
Obama's path to victory by NY Times
Texas primary (note Obama supporter's flag) by Fox Houston
Obama supporter follow-up interview by Youtube
Does Sharia have role in Britain? by Christian Science Monitor
Sharia courts operating in England by Fox News
Sharia not just about stoning by CNS News
Britain clears way for polygamy benefits by Washington Times
McCain opts out on campaign funds by Washington Times
Calls to ban anti-teen device by BBC News
Pakistan nuclear staff go missing by BBC News
Great seal turns 225 by Houston Chronicle
Suspects arrested in Muhammed cartoonist plot by Fox News
Huckabee an exciting candidate by
Award against Phillip Morris affirmed by
Romney endorses McCain by
Mayor compares global warming threat to terrorism by NY Sun
Retired teacher was illiterate by
Former GOP Senator to endorse Obama by
1 in 5 killed in ATV wrecks are children by
Islamic MPs look to ban Valentine's Day by Arab Times Online
Scalia's blunt comments on torture by USA Today
Court overturns sex toy ban by Fox News
McCain senate resignation talks by Phoenix Business Journal
Shiites, Sunis enraged by terrorist's death by CNS News
Sex and sensibility by Christian Science Monitor
Bush signs stimulus package by Fox News
NYC unveils "Get some" condom campaign by CBS News
Female referee removed from religious school by Fox News
When we torture (Opinion) by NY Times
My Saudi Valentine (Opinion) by NY Times
Gun control advocates introduce microstamping by CNS News
A flawed feminist test (Opinion) by NY Times
Anglican head clarifies Sharia remarks by Christian Post
NIU officials say campus is secure by
Dying mom wakes from coma by Minneapolis Star Tribune
House to let surveillance law lapse by Washington Times
Christians commend ESPN by Christian Post

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

WW--It's a Sin To Be Sad

~We’re supposed to be content with whatever situation we find ourselves in.
~Angels singing and trumpets playing are not a morose or serious picture.
~Daniel and David are the people most after God’s heart, and they’re the happiest as well.
~Dennis Prager claims that unhappiness is a powerful testimony to the falsehood of a religion because the unhappy person is either a good practitioner of a religion which doesn’t work or else a poor practitioner of a religion which does but is apparently so hard to do right that it’s adherents can’t do it. If he’s right, and Christians are supposed to be bringing others into Christianity, then wouldn’t that make unhappiness a sin? It either turns people off to Christ or to you as His representative, right?
~Joy is a fruit of the Spirit
~Sadness is just lack of faith in a God who is supposed to meet all our real needs.
~Only circumstances can make you sad, and why are you so concerned with circumstances?
~Worry is a major cause of sadness, and Jesus tells us specifically not to worry.
~Fear is a major cause of sadness, and we are repeatedly told to not fear.
~If you know Jesus, how can you ever be sad?
~There won’t be any tears in heaven, and we should be trying to emulate that now, shouldn’t we?
~Laugh and the world laughs with you, cry and you cry alone.
~The main thing that produces sorrow is sin, why should we let sin control us?
~The Catholic church, following Aquinas, taught that sloth is the laziness that keeps us from meditating on God’s goodness and doing the works that flow from loving Him, and this term Acedia was originally translated as sadness, especially the sadness at failing to fully manifest the fruit of the spirit, which led to inactivity: sloth.

Post-Show Thoughts: Jesus wept. Have you read the book of Psalms? God keeps a bottle of the tears of the saints. In the Old Testament, when people hear God's Word read to them, they regularly respond by ripping their clothes and putting on sackcloth and ashes...out of happiness? Far from believing the nonsense that sadness is a sin, I actually believe that someone who never feels sadness is probably sinning because it means either that he is not sufficiently attached to any other people or else is not sufficiently aware of his own sinful nature compared to what God expects of him: both of which are excellent foundations for at least occasional grief.

Links on sadness:
Bible References: passages with the words Sadness, Sorrow, Wept, Weep
Being happy, even in sadness by
Spiritual acedia, torpor and sadness by
Sloth by
Is sloth a sin? by

WW--We Shouldn’t Celebrate Valentine’s Day

~It’s origins go back to a Roman sex festival to the demigod Lupercus.
~It’s just another example of the commercialization of everything.
~It makes people who are single or recently singled feel great pain.
~If we’re going to have a “Love Day,” it should be agape, not eros, we commemorate.
~Do we really need more emphasis on sexual desire in America?
~The very notion that you can schedule passion into your planner on a particular date is contrary to the essence of genuine passion.
~When did “I bought you something” and “I love you” become synonymous?
~You can’t win on Valentine’s day. If you buy something, it’s expected. If you don’t, it’s a tragedy. It’s become a lose-lose day of misapplied entitlement thinking.
~Like mother’s day and father’s day, this holiday is primarily a benefit to women, and hence a burden on men. Where’s the reciprocity?
~Where, exactly, in the Bible does it tell us to celebrate Valentine’s Day?
~It just means more Victoria’s Secret ads.
~The very notion that you can schedule passion into your planner on a particular date is contrary to the essence of genuine passion.
~Romance is just a distraction to the real projects near to God’s heart.
~Celibacy is upheld as an ideal in several parts of the Bible, and until we have national celibacy day, I’m not going for Valentine’s Day either.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Theological Tuesday

~Bible Stories 5: Jesus turns water into wine (John 2:1-11)
~Is saying, “Oh, my God!” a sin?
~What should we make of Proverbs 31:16?
~Is it ever too late to turn back to God?

Links on Jesus Turning Water Into Wine:
Bible References: John 2: 1-11
Marriage at Cana by Wikipedia
Jesus turns water into wine (PDF) by
Jesus turns water into wine by
Why did Jesus turn water to wine? by
Did Jesus turn water into wine? by
The great transformation by

Monday, February 11, 2008

Best and Worst Advertising Slogans

We’ve all lived our lives in the midst of a culture created in large part by advertising, but what makes for a great ad slogan? Is it enough to just be memorable, or must it also actually promote the product itself and do so accurately? Thinking over the hundreds (or thousands) of slogans we all have memorized, which ones stick out as particularly good or particularly bad?

Good Slogans
~“Reach out and touch someone” AT+T 1979
~“You’re in good hands with Allstate.” Allstate 1956
~“The quicker picker upper.” Bounty 1971
~“Nighttime sniffling sneezing coughing aching stuffy head fever so you can rest medicine.” Nyquil
~“Time to make the donuts.” Dunkin’ Donuts
~“Crunch all you want. We’ll make more.” Doritos
~“Fifteen minutes could save you 15% or more.” Geico
~“Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don’t.” Almond Joy/Mounds
~“It’s everywhere you want to be.” Visa 1988
~“The ultimate driving machine.” BMW 1975
~“Plop, plop, fizz, fizz, oh what a relief it is.” Alka Seltzer 1976
~“Have it your way right away.” Burger King 1973
~“M’m! M’m! Good!” Campbell’s Soup 1935
~“Have a Coke and a smile.” Coca-Cola
~“When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight.” FedEX 1982
~“We answer to a higher authority.” Hebrew National 1975
~“Snap! Crackle! Pop!” Kellogg’s Rice Crispies 1932
~“Finger lickin’ good.” KFC 1952
~“Fill it to the rim with Brim.” Brim
~“Got Milk?” Milk 1993
~“Just do it.” Nike 1988
~“The Uncola” 7-Up 1973
~“All the news that’s fit to print.” New York Times 1896
~“It takes a licking and keeps on ticking.” Timex 1956
~“Be all you can be.” US Army 1981
~“Let your fingers do the walking.” Yellow Pages 1964
~“Does she or doesn’t she?” Clairol
~“Where’s the Beef?” Wendy’s
~“Is it live, or is it Memorex?” Memorex
~“Can you hear me now? Good.” Verizon
~“So easy a caveman could do it.” Geico
~“Life is short. Stay awake for it.” Caribou Coffee
~“They’re Grrrrreat.” Kellogg’s Frosted Wheats
~“Think outside the bun.” Taco Bell
~“Two all-beef patties, special sauce lettuce cheese pickles onions on a sesame seed bun.” McDonald’s Big Mac
~“Zoom Zoom.” Mazda
~“Give a hoot, don’t pollute” Forestry Service

Mediocre Slogans
~“Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there.” State Farm--Yeah, but I don’t have to pay my neighbors to act this way.
~“It keeps going, and going, and going.” Energizer--I’ve gotten better results with Duracel
~“99 44/100s percent pure” Ivory Soap--Pure what, and why not 100% pure?
~“When it rains, it pours.” Morton Salt 1911--It’s misunderstood by most people. Humidity won’t stop it pouring.
~“Good to the last drop.” Maxwell House 1915--Isn’t it true of all coffees?
~“The milk chocolate melts in your mouth, not in your hand.” M&M 1954--All candy looks the same on a dashboard in June in Phoenix.
~“Calgon, take me away.” Calgon 1985--To this day, I have no idea what Calgon is.
~“Breakfast of Champions.” Wheaties 1935--The major problem here is that it surely isn’t true. Wheaties never paid another ad agency creative fee again.
~“Don’t leave home without it.” American Express 1975--How would you leave home without your credit cards, unless you left your wallet?
~“Please don’t squeeze the Charmin.” Charmin 1964--Why not? And who squeezes toilet paper for kicks?
~ “Betcha can’t eat just one.” Lays--I can never remember the brand of chip it represents.
~“Taste’s great, less filling.” Miller Lite--No one in his right mind would say that any Lite beer was great tasting.

Bad Slogans
~“Every kiss begins with Kay.”--Also the slogan for Golddiggers of America United. I’ve kissed my wife many times, and I don’t think I’ve ever stepped foot within a Kay’s Jewelers. And, because of this slogan, I never would. How about, every kiss begins with love”
~“ A diamond is forever” DeBeers Consolidated--In case our love isn’t?
~“When you care enough to send the very best.” Hallmark 1934--No greeting card is ever the very best of anything. “When you care enough to spend just a couple bucks.”
~“Strong enough for a woman.” Secret--It used to be strong enough for a man but pH balanced for a woman. Now with feminism, it’s that women are as stinky and strong as men?
~“The choice of a new generation.” Pepsi 1984--So what happens when they grow up? I love Pepsi, but this was a bad idea.
~“Kid tested, mother approved.” Kix--No kid ever asked his mom for little yellow cardboard spheres. No mom ever thought she was really meeting her kid’s nutritional needs with tiny Cheeto’s minus the cheese.
~“No rules, just right.” Outback--Huh?
~“Doctors recommend Phillip Morris.” Phillip Morris--That should have been a warning and an admission of guilt, not an ad slogan.
~ “I’m lovin’ it.” McDonalds--Only if you don’t have taste buds.

Links on advertising slogans:
Advertising slogan hall of fame by
The advertising century by
Famous advertising slogans by Wikipedia
Marketing slogan database by


When someone says or does something that bothers you, how do you handle it? If you’re like most people, you keep your mouth shut, do nothing, and then go complain to your friends. If you’re like a few people, you get angry and do damage to the relationship by ineffective confrontation designed around winning rather than around reconciliation. Is there another way? A Biblical way? And do we have the right to not confront people when they’re wrong? But what about getting the story straight? Should witnesses be allowed to be anonymous? What are the rules for all of this stuff?

Post-Show Thoughts: This is one of the most important things people are missing in their relationships: the awareness of the benefits of confrontation and the skill to do it successfully. The decision to confront forces you into the practice that will cultivate the ability to do it better. Pray, get your heart right, forgive, be humble, listen, and always be seeking to achieve reconciliation and relationship in a loving manner. There is simply no other acceptable Biblical option for us. Any relationship which can be broken by right-hearted Biblical confrontation isn’t a relationship worth worrying too much about losing. Every fracture in a relationship is an opportunity forced upon us to either reduce the quality of it or to significantly improve the quality of it. And the real reward of relationships which are open and successful because they have endured such opportunities is unquantifiably large.

Bible References: Lev 19:16-18, Deut 19:15, Matt 6:9-15, Matt 18:15-20, Luke 17:1-10, John 13:34-35, John 15:12, John 15:17, 1 Cor 6:1-8, 1 Cor 13:4, 2 Cor 13:1, Gal 6:1-3, 1 Thess 5:14-15, 2 Thess 3:6, 2 Thess 3:14-16, 1 Tim 5:19, 1 John 2:8-11, 1 John 3:15, 1 John 4:19-21, James 5:19-20

Christian Confrontation by Covenant Fellowship Church
A Time to Confront by
Biblical Confrontation and Church Discipline
by Brent Cunningham
Biblical Confrontation and Restoration

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

WW--It Doesn’t Matter Who Is President

~All leadership is appointed by God, not men, anyway.
~The real strength of America is not in its Presidents, but in its people.
~We can endure and survive anyone. Conservatives endured Clinton. Liberals endured Reagan.
~The whole purpose of the Constitution is to make it so that it matters very little who is running the show.
~Our real concerns should be on the kingdom of heaven, which can survive and thrive in any environment. After all, what did Jesus care about politics?
~Whoever gets elected will, by definition, have won a fairly long and difficult process which by its very nature vets the candidates to eliminate the fruitcakes.
~One bad President won’t destroy too much.
~The President has so little daily power because so much of his time is taken up by dignitary functions and delegated to subordinates.
~He can’t do anything really without Congress, which matters much more than does the President.
~God can work through anyone, and if you say He can’t, what does that say about His power?
~It’s easier to submit to and pray for our leaders when you take this approach.
~Too much emphasis on who becomes President is what leads you to become vicious and partisan against the other one.

Post-Show Thoughts: People truly do overestimate the importance of the President, at least in contrast with how little attention is paid to Senators, House members, and politicians at the local and state level. Furthermore, politicians are not the most important people anyhow. All that being said, the President is very important because he makes the biggest decisions and represents such a massive chunk of power at the federal level, even moreso because our government functions in such an extra-constitutional way. But the easiest element of this question to see is that in the next 8 years somewhere between 2 and 6 Supreme Court justices will retire, and given the prominence of the Court in modern politics, this is huge. One more President with the right justices being nominated will really do a lot for some of the major social issues, particularly abortion. Also, the Bible is so clear about the blessings of good leadership and the burdens of bad leadership. If God would hold nations accountable for their bad leaders under monarchial systems, just think of what He might do under democratic ones.

Links on presidency:
The case for Supreme Court term limits by

WW--Grace is Bad

~It undermines personal responsibility.
~It indebts people unfairly.
~It does not teach people how to solve their own problems.
~It creates dependency.
~If you don’t give everyone equal relief from what they deserve, it becomes disparate treatment.
~Grace must not be so great or else we would be encouraged to sin so that it might abound.
~The soil for growing grace is evil and imperfection, so how can something good grow out of that?
~It’s just a manipulative to get better behavior out of people.
~People abuse it and those who are prone to give it.

Post-Show Thoughts: Those who get frustrated by grace because the individual doesn't get punished have made the principles of right and wrong into something more valuable than love. At the very core of God's nature is to express and experience love in relationship with us, and to complain about that as being a violation of justice is to care more for a principle than for people and what is best with them and God. That's the power of grace. It reconciles us to others and to God, which is the highest good. And one great blessing of marriage is the opportunity it gives us to continually practice divine grace toward our spouses by doing the one and only thing truly necessary to make marriage work and be a blessed union: treat our spouses better than they deserve.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Theological Tuesday

~Bible Stories 4: David and Goliath (1 Samuel 16-17)
~Why shouldn’t we sin?

~What should we make of Proverbs 31:16?

Bible References: 1 Sam 16-18, 2 Sa, 21:18-19, 1 Chron 20:5

Links on David and Goliath:
Samuel, David and Goliath
Who killed Goliath? by
Did Saul know David? by
Countering Bible contradictions by
David and Goliath summary by
David and Goliath by

Monday, February 4, 2008

Best Christian Books Other Than The Bible

I’ve recently had a couple of different people email me to ask someone email to ask me what I would recommend for them to read, and both of them kind of stumped me. So I gave them each some sort of answer, but I thought this would make a very useful discussion topic. So, what books, other than the Bible, would you recommend other Christians read?

Book Recommendations
CS Lewis—Narnia Series, Silent Planet trilogy
GK Chesterton—Father Brown Stories
Frank Peretti—Piercing the Darkness, This Present Darkness
Tolstoy—War and Peace
Dostoevsky—Crime and Punishment,
Solzhenitsyn—Gulag Archipelago
JRR Tolkien—Lord of the Rings
David Wilkerson—Cross and the Switchblade

Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica
Thomas A Kempis—The Imitation of Christ
John Bunyan—The Pilgrim’s Progres
Martin Luther—Large Catechism
Catechism of the Catholic Church

John Stott—Basic Christianity
CS Lewis—Screwtape Letters, Mere Christianity, Abolition of Man, Great Divorce
GK Chesterton—Orthodoxy
Francis Shaeffer—Christian Manifesto
Stephen L. Carter—Civility, God’s Name in Vain, Culture of Disbelief
Lee Strobel—The Case for Faith, Christ, Creator
John Baille—A Diary of Private Prayer
Richard Foster—A Celebration of Discipline
Walter Martin—Kingdom of the Cults
Josh McDowell—Evidence that Demands a Verdict
Os Guinness—Fit Bodies, Fat Minds
JI Packer—Knowing God

Edwin Louis Cole—Communication, Sex, and Money
James Dobzon—Bringing Up Boys
Willard Harley—His Needs, Her Needs
Gary Smalley—If Only He Knew
Joshua Harris—I Kissed Dating Goodbye
Phillip Johnson—Reason in the Balance, Darwin on Trial
Jonathan Wells—Icons of Evolution
Michael Behe—Darwin’s Black Box
Randy Alcorn—Pro Life Answers to Pro Choice Arguments
David Murrow—Why Men Hate Going to Church
John Eldredge—Wild at Heart
Emerson Eggerichs—Love and Respect
John Piper—Desiring God

Listeners Recommended
Jackie—Francine Rivers—Redeeming Love
Keith—George Barna—Think Like Jesus
Terri—Charles Sheldon—In His Steps
Veronica—RC Sproul—Defending Faith
Gina—Arnold Pen III—Ten Peas in a Pod
Gina—Josh McDowell—The New Tolerance
Steve Brown—A Scandalous Freedom
William Backus and Marie Chapian—Telling Yourself the Truth
Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend—Boundaries

Lisa—Jeff Van Vonderan—The Subtle Power of Spiritual Abuse
D. Arthur Fife—The Secret Place: Passionately Pursuing His Presence
James H. Rutz—The Open Church: How to Bring Back the Exciting Life of the 1st Century Church
Jonathan—John Bevere—The Bait of Satan, Under Cover
Jonathan—Terry Nance—God's Armor Bearer

Links on Christian reading:
Essential reading list for Christian thinkers by

Should We Judge People By How They Speak?

There are many things for which we might possibly judge people: ethics, appearance, knowledge, athleticism, health, height, humor, etc. Some of these are more and others less important as ways of evaluating other people. How does the ability of a person to speak eloquently fit into the list of things we might use to evaluate a person? How important are grammar, phrasemaking, vocabulary, concision, comprehensibility, quickness, etc.? Given the apparent impact of eloquence on the Democratic Primaries, there is also the question of how much leadership depends upon or can be measured by it.