Thursday, June 14, 2012

Death By Presidential Assassination

It is hard to believe that the American people are not protesting the White House death squad.  In fact, we are sitting by while the President of the United States of America and his aides meet every week to draw up their own death list of who they will kill next.  The President of the United States has allowed the “War on Terrorism” to push him to the point that he justifies his right to kill anyone on the earth who he defines as a terrorist—American citizens included.

This is a very old story.  Our president is not the first to have a "kill" list. There was a king who took a  walk on the roof of his house one evening, he saw a beautiful woman taking a bath. Someone told him she was the wife of a Hittite soldier off fighting in his army. The king had her brought to the palace and "knew her" in the Biblical way. Sometime later she sent word to the king she was going to have his baby.

The king had committed adultery with one of his soldiers’ wives and now there was going to be a child! Desperately he tried to think of a way to cover his sin. Finally he had a plan; he would bring the solider home from the battlefront and let him visit his wife. Then everyone would think he was the baby’s father. But the plan didn’t work. The solider came back to Jerusalem, but he wouldn’t go down to his house, not even after the king got him drunk. He slept with the king’s servants instead. He wouldn’t let himself enjoy being home with his wife while the other soldiers were having a hard time on the battlefield.

What could the king do now? Soon the solider would hear his wife was going to have a baby, a baby that was not his. He must never know that the king was its father!
The king  wrote to the leader of his army, commanding him, “Set the solider in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retreat from him, that he may be struck down and die.” Then he had the solider take the letter back with him. When the king heard the solider  was dead he told his commander not to feel guilty. “The sword devours one as well as another.” The king treated the death as if it  had been an ordinary casualty of war.

The king was David, the woman was Bathsheba and the solider was Uriah.  Uriah made the king's "kill" list.

There is a difference between war and murder.  There are leaders who justify this as acceptable means of the fight on the “War on Terrorism”.  America has lost all sense of morality.  We no longer have morally responsible leaders.  The President of the United States has been ordering drone assassination and defending his actions since he took office.  His “War on Terror” is much like the expression the “devil made me do it.”  If, he is a “Christian", as he claims, he would know he is morally responsible for the murders of those innocent bystanders who are called “collateral damage”.  Where are the liberals who felt Bush are was a war criminal and should be impeached?  How can the liberals support a man who brags about the mass murders he has ordered?  The hit list of terrorist killed by drones has been at the cost of hundreds of civilian deaths.

I know it is difficult to know the full story of what has really happened when a drone pilot thousands of miles away targets a “terrorist”.  That pilot may have seen a small child who had all the characteristics of being a “terrorist” or a mother holding her young child who may have been hiding a bomb.  After all, US strikes are well researched so that we minimize the collateral damages.  US intelligence would never allow a strike to take place if innocent civilians were in the strike area.

As Christians we know it is immoral for our leaders to have a “kill” list.  Yet, we will justify these actions because times have changed and the enemy we are fighting is different from past wars.  If our enemy has no qualms killing women and children, or killing thousands of innocent Americans, destroying our economic stability, then we have no problem with putting them on a “kill” list.  We can justify how we act in an immoral way towards a pathological radical religious group and they should see the handwriting on the wall as we carry out our drone assassination program until every last insane “terrorist” is dead.  The ends justify the means.  Our feel our leaders are right in using every means available to give these maniacs the same death they give out to others.  We have agreed to move over to the dark side to stop evil--even if it is wrong.

As citizens of the United States of America how can we support leaders that have no qualms about killing innocent people, including men, women and children?  This action is not the exception, but the rule and they do this repeatedly, day after day, year after year. But of course, this doesn't matter-- we are making America secure. Because those we kill are, of necessity, insane religious bigots trying to impose absolute dominion over others. Even the innocent men, women and children we kill will eventually become a terrorist.  The people we kill whose names we don't know doing things we don't know for reasons we don't know is justified because they have been marked for death by our president and we trust his judgment. 

What we as America should not forget is the same president who can determine whose name is put on the “kill” list has the power to class you as a terrorist.  Our Congress has given him and any president following him, absolute power in making these choices.  He has the power to unleash death whenever and in whatever direction he chooses. The "right" to dispense death arbitrarily without due process-- the claim that the government may murder anyone it chooses, Americans included, whenever it desires is immoral and we should be concerned.  What the government can do to other they will soon be doing to us.  

There is outrage for what is happening in Syria--the president killing his own people.  As Americans we are appalled but we have given our president the same power and authority to kill those whom he deems as a terrorist to the security of our country.  We don’t seem to have a problem with this.  How long will it be before we have killing in our streets?  Keep in mind those being killed in Syria by their president our “terrorist”. 

We should never forget the history of our country where we had no problem killing thousands of American Native Indians because they would not conform to our ways.  When President Andrew Jackson gave the order to move Indians in 1838, hundreds of Indians lost their lives.  When Congress gave Jackson the power over life and death, he used the threat of death to accomplish his goals, just like our present president.  

America Christians, beware.  We could be next.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Drones-- The Oppression of America

 Proverbs 15:3
The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.

Soon the eyes of the government will be every place, beholding the evil and the good.

The Declaration of Independence declares the principle that government derives its just powers from the consent of the governed.  I have not given my consent for the government to fly spy drones over my house, my town or my state.  I don’t know of anyone in our small town that would give their consent to be spied upon by our government.  

The Constitution does not authorize the government to spy upon We the People. A government that spies upon its people breaks faith with the people violates the contract between the government and the people under which the people consent to be governed. A government that spies upon its people produces a nation of people who will mistrust its leaders. A government that spies upon its people ceases to honor the privacy of its people.  If our government has the power to invade the privacy of its people it is no longer a government deriving its power from the people.  America is quickly becoming a nation that is occupied by a government that no longer speaks for the American people. 

Americans have prided themselves on our Constitution that protects our freedoms.  The law on surveillance begins with the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, which states clearly that Americans' privacy may not be invaded without a warrant based on probable cause.  That was before it became accepted by the past two admirations to spy on Americans in violation of our Constitution.

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.  This is what we used to have as a protection of our privacy.  With the technology of today drones can now provide our government with surveillance that has the ability to spy on the American people from a distance or within feet of our homes.  Again, this is a violation of our freedom. 

 The US Supreme Court (US v. Katz 389 US 347) has made it clear that this core privacy protection does cover government eavesdropping. As a result, all electronic surveillance by the government in the United States is illegal, unless it falls under one of a small number of precise exceptions specifically carved out in the law.  This would include drones.

Our government leaders have used the fear and threat of “terrorist” to the point that everything has become lumped into “terrorist activities” and “We the People” need protection.  However, our government has far exceeded its authority in the area of national security.  The National Security Administration (NSA) can only spy where it is explicitly granted permission to do so by statute. Citizens concerned about surveillance do not have to answer the question, "what law restricts the NSA's spying?" Rather, the government is required to supply an answer to the question "what law permits the NSA to spy?"  That was before our present president and congress changed the law.

But can we blame the government for all this need for security?  No, I think not.  As Americans we have lost the respect for each others property rights.  Maybe, this is because we no longer feel it is important to keep the commandment “Thou shall not steal”.  If as a people we can disregard the laws of God what chance is there that we will keep man’s law?

The big theft today is stealing someone’s identity.  Anytime we make a transaction we are asked for personal information, and we are given the assurance that it will not be used for any other purpose.  Then we hear on the news the number of companies hacked and information sold to individuals who use it to rob us.  We could blame it on the terrorist since companies are required to collect information due to “Know Your Customer Laws”, to prevent international terrorists from moving money or purchasing items that may be used to manufacture items to be used against us.  In fact, Homeland Security has its own you’re your customer program and it is Homeland Security just recruited Wal-Mart as a spying partner.

We have arrived at a unique moment in the history of surveillance, in a poll conducted by the Washington Post 71% of the American’s approve of surveillance.  Every day we are photographed and videotaped on the highway, at the store, the bank, the local park, every government building, schools and even in passing our neighbor’s home that have video surveillance.  What these people fail to realize is that are an estimated 30 million surveillance cameras now deployed in the United States shooting 4 billion hours of footage a week. Americans are being watched, all of us, almost everywhere.  Soon we will be watched from the sky by government controlled drones.  When will America wake up and say enough is enough?  I for one, have come to the conclusion that I would rather place my trust in the protection of the LORD rather than this present government. As the Psalmist tells us that we should  ". . .not put your trust in princes, no in a son of man, in whom there is no help.  His spirit departs, he returns to his earth; In that very day his plans perish.  Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God." Ps. 146

Monday, June 4, 2012

Who is to Blame for Moral Decline?

I have been in the ministry 44 years and have seen a major shift in the mission of the church.  The mission of the church was to bring the message of salvation to a lost world.  Today there are very few individuals finding salvation in the church.  As our country quickly slides down the board path towards destruction we have a tendency to blame the liberals for our destruction.  However, I would say that the reason our country is in the mess we are today can be laid at the door of the evangelical churches. As Christians we are the salt and light of the world and have been commissioned with the task of spreading the true message of salvation.  This country is falling apart because we no longer are concerned about sin or sinners- we have lost what preserves—Jesus Christ.  

The evangelical churches became so anti-everything that we allowed the unbelievers to control our education, media, law, medicine, and politics.  The end result is a godless nation.  That is the end results when a nation no longer has the influence of godly people.  We can separate ourselves out of existence.  The evangelicals pride themselves on their high standards of Christianity at the cost of reaching the lost.  We have misplaced our hatred for sin with a hatred for people.  We have no problem crying out against the sins that disgust us but harbor the sins of arrogance, pride, and self-righteousness.  We no longer carry a burden for lost souls.  Our pray life is consumed with selfish requests and we disregard the mission of the church to win souls to Christ Jesus by lifting him up.  When the church gets away from the message of Jesus we have lost our way.  

We begin to wander away from God when we gave up our responsibility to raise our own families.  We have slowly given our families to the control of Satan without protest.  The Christian training of children is vital to sustaining the Christian faith.  But as Christian we have lost sight of the importance of education with a Christian view.

The education system in this country had its foundation in Christianity.  In the state of Indiana where I live, the Quakers had a major impact on early education.  In the late 1900’s they turned their schools and academies over to the state and education became secularized.  Abraham Lincoln rightly prophesied when he said, “The philosophy of the schoolroom in one generation will be the philosophy of the government in the next.”  Today evangelical Christians have lost their children to the secularized education.  This has become a serious problem.  In fact, the problem is at epidemic levels — 75% of young adults raised in a Christian home leave the church after they leave the home. Think about that — on average, three out of every four kids attending your youth group won’t be attending any church a few years from now. 

When the church gave up the training of their children to the secular public education system we set this country into a moral decline. Christians actually paid to make their children atheist.  Before you become so defensive let me explain.  Our children are taught to think the church is irrelevant.  Sports take a priority over church. What makes this so sad is that there are coaches who claim to be Christians but demand that your child put sports before God.  Sporting events at one time would never be held on Sunday; today it is a common practice.  There a fathers and mother who are condemning their children to eternal punishment because they refused to invest in their spiritual future.   

If high school has not made your child an atheist wait until college.  College professors are five times more likely to identify themselves as atheists than the general public. On top of having an avowed atheist teach your child keep this in mind, half of all college professors view evangelical Christian students unfavorably.  The whole philosophy of education today is atheistic. The evangelical church has not prepared our children to resist the false-teaching.  Maybe it is because most evangelical Christians do not know what they believe.  We live in a day when only one (1) percent of adults in America have a Biblical worldview.

Next to education, the greatest influence today on the American public is the media both news and entertainment.  Millions of Americans are so hooked on television that they fit the criteria for substance abuse.  Television has also become the major tool to spread anti-Christian views.  Anti-Christian hostility is reaching a new, more violent level. Christians are mocked and our faith and values are increasingly maligned. Anti-Christian bias within the media has played a large part in stirring anti-Christian sentiments.  

Again, who is to blame?  I would have to say the church.  The church has some repenting to do.  Outside of those who hate the church because they are just evil, what has the church done to cause individuals to hate Christians?  In my years in the ministry there have been many who have left the church because of being seriously wounded by something they heard in church or from someone in a position of spiritual authority.  It is no doubt that we are reaping what we have sown. 

 Recently I spoke with some retail people who said they hated to see one particular group of evangelical Christians come into their store because  they were demanding, arrogant, self-righteous and insulting.  That is a great testimony for the Christian faith.  No wonder making fun of Christians is becoming a past time for many in the media.  No doubt they too have run into this type of Christian.  We need to do some repenting.

I blame the evangelical church for the moral decline of America today. Yes, I am aware there are exceptions; however, most American churches over-emphasize entertainment and ignore the biblical commands.  Many of the small evangelical churches that are teaching the WORD are finding the younger generation is leaving to go to larger churches where their children will be entertained with skits, rock bands and fast paced videos.  The result is a generation that has no ability to reason, no foundation in what is truth, or a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. We’ve failed to recognize that what we win them with we win them to. If we win them with entertainment we win them to entertainment. If we train them to ignore God they will deny God.

So if you’re a true believer  who is upset because our country is going down the broad road of destruction by killing the unborn, subverting marriage, legislating immorality, denying God from the public place, making our children into a generation that does not know God then do something about it!

First, you need to make Jesus Christ a priority in YOUR life, in YOUR family, and in YOUR church.  You need to prepare YOUR children for the future.  Teach them the importance of a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.  Don’t get caught up in the attitude of the world.  Don’t rot your soul with the thing that quickly passes away.  Seek first the Kingdom of God.