Sunday, August 29, 2010

The Modern Sanhedrin – Are You Going To Believe Them?

At the request of the Tigress:

In the biblical land of Israel, every city had a Sanhedrin, a Supreme Court, if you will. It’s mandate covered secular and religious law. In fact, just as we look at Islam’s Shari ’a Law today, ancient Jews lived in a similar system which blended secular and religious law into the same government – a theocracy.

Each city’s Sanhedrin was comprised of 23 Judges. The Great Sanhedrin, in Jerusalem, totaled 71 members. It met in the great Hall of Hewn Stones in the Temple in Jerusalem.

There is no doubt that the Sanhedrin of Jesus’ day knew that the Messiah was to return around 27 AD (the dates are by our reckoning). They knew this because of the prophecies of Daniel. This most wondrous prophecy begins with Dan. Ch. 8. It is one of those prophecies in the Bible that makes one shudder in amazement, because if you’re not a believer before understanding the prophecy, you will be afterwards. Or else, your mind is simply closed to the truth. Forget Nostradamus and Jeanne Dixon; they are rank amateurs compared to the Lord.

Remember that before the Judean existence in Jerusalem the Israelites had been lead from Egypt by Moses, roamed the desert for 40 years (while arguing with God), eventually crossed into the promised land and because of their continuing sin, were taken captive and removed from the promised land by Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon. The Temple in Jerusalem had been destroyed the first time and Daniel, along with the Remnant of his people, were living in exile.

I’ll start at Daniel 8:13;

Dan 8:13 Then I heard a holy one speaking; and another holy one said to that certain one who was speaking, "How long will the vision be, concerning the daily sacrifices and the transgression of desolation, the giving of both the sanctuary and the host to be trampled underfoot?"

Dan 8:14 And he said to me, "For two thousand three hundred days; then the sanctuary shall be cleansed."

Most all scholars and holy men throughout history understand this 2,300 days to actually be 2,300 years. This day for a year principle is based on Ezekiel 4:4-6 and Numbers 14:34. BTW, the Jewish year was comprised of 360 days with 30 day months (unlike today). Each week was 7 days, as always, having been established that way by God’s creation. The Sabbath existed long before Moses.

In modern times we have the fortunate advantage of looking back with hindsight. The ancient Sanhedrin had to look forward in time. As this prophecy unfolds you’ll understand why this prophetic illustration has ultimate importance concerning the “modern Sanhedrin”.

As you read through Daniel it reaches a seminal point in Ch. 9.

Dan 9:24 "Seventy weeks are determined For your people and for your holy city, To finish the transgression, To make an end of sins, To make reconciliation for iniquity, To bring in everlasting righteousness, To seal up vision and prophecy, And to anoint the Most Holy. [most Holy Place]

Dan 9:25 "Know therefore and understand, That from the going forth of the command To restore and build Jerusalem Until Messiah the Prince, There shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; The street shall be built again, and the wall, Even in troublesome times.

Dan 9:26 "And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself; And the people of the prince who is to come Shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end of it shall be with a flood, And till the end of the war desolations are determined.

Dan 9:27 Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; But in the middle of the week He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall be one who makes desolate, Even until the consummation, which is determined, Is poured out on the desolate."


Looking in hindsight as we are, Daniel has been told by God that his people have a total of 2300 years before the Sanctuary is cleansed. And that starting at the beginning of that 2,300 years (at the command to restore and rebuild Jerusalem) they will have a total of 70 weeks determined for the people to accomplish certain things. Then scripture breaks it down in this way; 7 + 62 weeks before the Messiah is “cut off”. 7 + 62 = 69. BTW, the term “cut off” simply means; at the end of the 69 weeks the Messiah will appear and the Jewish people will have to decide if they will follow the Messiah. Their allotted time is finished.

[ Note: Some religious leaders say “cut off” means the Messiah is killed (the crucifixion). This “killed” idea is a modern interpretation. But linguists from ancient times up until modern times have also said it simply means the allotted time is finished; cut off. Obviously, the Messiah is "cut off " (killed), but not for Himself (but for others). Either way you interpret this particular point, the message is still clear]

The Scripture continues … 1 extra week is included for the Messiah to confirm a covenant with many and bring an end to sacrifice and offering (in the midst of the final week). The total now comes up to 70 weeks. (69 weeks + 1 week)

[ Note: Here again a modern interpretation enters the picture. Although it’s very clear to most that this prophecy is referenced to the Messiah, modern interpreters have stated this verse actually relates to a future Anti-Christ! And that this future bad guy will stop the Jewish sacrifices, et al. That’s why we have a very vocal group of modern Sanhedrin claiming that a new Jewish Temple must be rebuilt in Jerusalem – so the sacrifices can be started – so they can stopped! How convoluted is that? They don’t realize or accept that Jesus stopped the sacrifices with his own sacrifice. Also, nowhere in Scripture is there an example of taking the last “bit” (the 70th week) of a prophecy and willy-nilly moving it to the end times. “70” will naturally flow right after “69”. It makes one wonder who they actually worship sometimes!

Now, back to reality … Imagine being told, as a people, that you have 70 weeks to fix everything or that’s it – no more dealing with you!

Using the day for a year principle, this 70 weeks becomes;

7 days per week times 70 weeks = 490 days; we apply the day for a year principle so, 490 years!

So! The people have 490 actual years to get it right!

Now, all we need to know is when the decree was given to restore and rebuild Jerusalem to add the years forward, or we can establish when Christ was crucified and subtract the years back to determine if the Prophecy makes sense or not!


Here’s where some confusion comes into play. Some scholars say Christ was crucified in the year 33 AD, others say it was 31 AD, or 32 AD. Also, the Old Testament gives 3 differing “decrees” to rebuild portions of Jerusalem. Of course, Scripture makes it clear. The Bible says that Jesus began his ministry around the age of 30, so it seems reasonable He had to be 33 or so at the time of the crucifixion.

The book of Ezra tells of the decree of Artaxerxes to not only rebuild Jerusalem but to also restore the judgment of the Sanhedrin. This is why most scholars agree this is the one that “begins” the 2,300 years. In fact, Ezra gives us some of the written text of the decree

Ezra 7:11-13 "Now this is the copy of the letter that King Artaxerxes gave unto Ezra the priest, the scribe, even a scribe of the words of the commandments of the Lord and of his statutes to Israel. Artaxerxes, king of kings, unto Ezra the priest, . . . and at such a time, I make a decree that all they of the people of Israel, and of his priests and Levites, in my realm, which are minded of their own freewill to go up to Jerusalem, go with thee." BTW, this date can be traced in history to 457 BC.

The 69 weeks (which would be 69 x 7 – applying the year for a day) comes to 483 years from Artaxerxes’ decree.

457 BC + 483 years = Fall of 27 AD (remember, there is no “Zero” year from BC to AD) For biblical reference see Luke 3:1-3, 21-23 and Gal. 4:4. Also remember that Christ’s birth date is "unknown", other than being able to trace backwards from his known age of 30 at the beginning of his ministry and age 33 at the crucifixion. Most say he was born in 4 BC. People get confused about the BC - AD dating (I did!). Contrary to popular belief Christ's birth is not "centered" around a mysterious 1 BC - 1 AD date. By looking at Herod and other historical resources and astronomy, plus biblical text, we can nail down the birth of Christ to 4 BC.

27 AD is the time Christ was baptized and anointed as Messiah! We know this from secular history and the biblical record.. When was the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar?

Luk 3:1 Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judea, Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, his brother Philip tetrarch of Iturea and the region of Trachonitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene, [27 AD] . . .

Luk 3:21 When all the people were baptized, it came to pass that Jesus also was baptized; and while He prayed, the heaven was opened.

Luk 3:22 And the Holy Spirit descended in bodily form like a dove upon Him, and a voice came from heaven which said, "You are My beloved Son; in You I am well pleased." [the Annointing of the Messiah]

Luk 3:23 Now Jesus Himself began His ministry at about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, the son of Heli, . . .


This all brings us to Dan. 9:27, the Messiah’s week; or, 7 years with the day for a year principle. Jesus’ ministry was a short 3 1/2 years. But during that time he established a “covenant with many”. In the “midst” of the week, after 3 1/2 years the Messiah stopped the sacrifices of the Jewish Temple by becoming the only valid sacrifice! This occurred in 31 AD. The veil in the Temple was ripped apart! This veil was a massive thing, heavy with rug-like fabric, intricately hung in a maze as an entry way into the Holy of Holy's. It wasn’t the sheer thin thing shown in the old movies. And, although the animal sacrifices were to continue for another 40 years, they had no validity. There is no doubt that they “spiritually” ended at the crucifixion.

Our Messiah then rose from the dead and hasn’t stopped working since!

After another 3 1/2 years (finishing the 70th week) Stephen gave his now famous speech to the Sanhedrin (Acts Ch. 8) and was stoned to death – in 34 AD. The probation given to the Jewish people to finally “get it right” was over. The gospel would now go to the Gentiles and rest of the world. The Israelites, the Jews had played their part. Christians became the inheritors of Abraham! We became Israel!

When did the last part happen? The desolation? Why, in 70 AD the Roman general Titus surrounded Jerusalem. He delayed the attack inexplicitly for a few days (this is when the new-found Christians escaped by fleeing into the mountains), but then destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple. Not one stone was left undisturbed as Jesus said.

This was the second great “abomination that caused desolation” in biblical history; Nebuchadnezzar's destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple being the first.

The Bible says we have one more “abomination that causes desolation” to go. The famous end times! This time it will affect the entire world. Remember, the Israel of the end time is not the modern nation of Israel (as much as I love it), but spiritual Israel – all believers in Christ.


What about the rest of the 2,300 years? We’ve only covered 490 years! Well, that subject is for another blog entry. But, isn’t it astounding that several hundred years before the event happened the prophecy perfectly predicted it! Yet, we still have religious leaders today steering us away from biblical truth.

For those who believe that a new Jewish Temple must be rebuilt before the end times to reestablish the sacrifice; that the sacrifice of Jesus was not enough, I lovingly offer the following verses:

Jesus himself speaking of Jerusalem and it’s earthly Temple,

Mat 23:38 See! Your house is left to you desolate;

Heb 10:26 For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,

Heb 10:27 but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries.

Heb 10:28 Anyone who has rejected Moses' law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses.

Heb 10:29 Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?

Then, after all is said and done in reference to the New Jerusalem, Revelation 22 states:

For I saw no Temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are it's Temple.

In other words, a rebuilt earthly Temple in Jerusalem is actually a denial of Christ’s most merciful sacrifice! A rebuild earthly Temple is declaring that Christ’s sacrifice was not good enough. Do you really believe God would like that? In all fairness to these folks, I realize that most of them also understand that a modern rebuilt Temple would be a False Temple.

So, be forewarned! Just as in the days of the ancient Sanhedrin, a modern Sanhedrin is trying to point your attention towards a non-biblical direction. Don’t follow them. Follow the Bible instead!

If you don't believe me in all this, will you believe Jesus? On several occasions Jesus implicated and acknowledged this prophecy of Daniel. The most poignant, IMO, is from Matthew 18:21-22. Peter asks Jesus about how many times you should forgive your brother for a transgression.

Jesus answers, "seventy times seven".

Ref Article: Daniel Prophecy

The Observer

Friday, August 27, 2010

What Is The One Thing You Cannot Be Forgiven For?

Bush Campaign Chief and Former RNC Chair, Ken Mehlman, has recently announced that he is “gay”. He stated this:

"It's taken me 43 years to get comfortable with this part of my life," said Mehlman, now an executive vice-president with the New York City-based private equity firm, KKR. "Everybody has their own path to travel, their own journey, and for me, over the past few months, I've told my family, friends, former colleagues, and current colleagues, and they've been wonderful and supportive. The process has been something that's made me a happier and better person. It's something I wish I had done years ago."

Is Mehlman’s sexual sin the one thing you cannot be forgiven for? No, of course not! Remember Moses? Moses was forgiven for murder!

But there is only one thing you cannot be forgiven for!

If you just knew about this one thing you could possibly avoid it!

I heard a minister once declare that even Adolf Hitler could have sincerely and truthfully asked forgiveness for all his many sins, paid society for his incurred debt, and therefore would have as good a chance as anyone to go to Heaven. This is the extent that God forgives and loves us!

The most fateful words ever spoken by Jesus had to do with the fearful possibility of committing the unpardonable sin. He said, "Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men." Matthew 12:31.

So, what is this “blasphemy” against the Holy Spirit? Does it mean disrespect; is it words, spoken in anger against the Spirit; what is it?

Before answering all the troubling questions people ask about the unpardonable sin, a glorious truth needs to be recognized. We serve a God of infinite love and compassion. It is not His will that anyone should be lost. He has made provision in His Word for every soul to be cleansed and sanctified. The incredible promise of 1 John 1:9 applies to every man, woman, or child in the world today: "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

On the condition of sincere confession, God promises to forgive any sin, regardless of its nature. "Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool." Isaiah 1:18.

What a special assurance for those who have violated every law of God and man in their wild plunge into degradation. God loves them still! There is no guilt too great for Him to cleanse away. He waits with outstretched arms to receive any who take the first step toward His forgiveness and mercy.



So … what is so important about the Holy Spirit that it becomes unpardonable to “blaspheme” it? It all revolves around sin and what sin is. The Bible defines sin as;

"Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law." 1 John 3:4. Paul enlarges on that statement by declaring that sin is the breaking of the Ten-Commandment law. "I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet." Romans 7:7.

So, sin is the breaking of God’s law, some associated sin wrapped around the 10 Commandments. And yes, the Big 10 covers all sin!


Besides teaching us all things, Jesus indicated that the Spirit will also "guide you into all truth." John 16:13. Every searching student of the Word has probably experienced this teaching, guiding influence of the Holy Spirit. There can be no true insight into biblical truth without the enlightenment of this Spirit of God.

But wait, what about "offending" the Holy Spirit?


The third mission of the Holy Spirit is to convict of sin. Jesus said: "It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment." John 16:7, 8.

It is the special work of the Spirit to reprove or convict us of sin. When wrongs are committed, the conscience is pricked with a sense of guilt. Please take note that as long as we allow the Holy Spirit to teach, guide, and convict, we could never be guilty of committing the unpardonable sin. But suppose we refuse to acknowledge these three offices of the Spirit in our own personal experience with God? That is when people approach the deadly parameters of the worst sin on record.

1Timothy 4 tells us what this means and gives us a couple of examples. “But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth”.

This offense to the Holy Spirit, this total lack of "guilty conviction", simply disallows the Holy Spirit to work with you and I; the Sinner. We cannot be forgiven because we don't allow it! This is the sin we cannot be forgiven for!

So, when Mr. Mehlman says it’s taken 43 years “to get comfortable” with his sin, has his conscience been seared? I don’t know; that’s between him and God.

If a church teaches vegetarianism does it mean their consciences have been seared?

If a church teaches that it’s Priests cannot marry or it’s OK to be “gay”, does it mean their consciences have been seared?

The Bible declares many behaviors as “sin”. If you’re a professed Christian but you approve of gay marriage, does it mean your conscience has been seared? What if you approve of adultery? What about drunkenness? What about all the other things expressly mentioned in the Bible?

The examples of Sodom and Gomorrah are in the Bible for a reason. In our modern world it is easy to see how we are becoming more and more like these two biblical cities.

And we know what happened to them!

Remember, our feelings of GUILT comes from the convicting influence of the Holy Spirit, SHAME comes from Satan! If you have no more guilty conscience about something you know to be wrong, your conscience may be seared as with a red hot branding iron!

Ref Article: Point of No Return

The Observer

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

One Reason Why The Political Right Is Just As Dangerous As The Political Left

Alan Keyes once famously declared,” the Republican Party is dead”. Of course, he was simply stating what was obvious to anyone paying attention. Once the bastion of the moral high ground, this political hangout for "conservatives" has simply become a pale version of the Democrat Party – who’s only real effort is geared towards getting re-elected and re-assuming power. Whereas the Democrats create oppressive government and don’t pay for it, the Republicans create oppressive government and pay for it – hence the only real difference.

True Conservatives, those who base their principles on moral grounds, have no political party in America.

This is especially true in today’s environs. As we argue over the building of a Mosque at Ground Zero (no, we shouldn't allow it), Obamacare (already having a detrimental effect), and government debt (13 trillion and counting); our so-called “conservative” pundits are literally out in left field, as reported by Dave Kupelian at WNDaily :

“Conservative” superstar Ann Coulter is scheduled to deliver the keynote address at – are you ready? – the "HOMOCON 2010" conference of "conservative homosexuals" sponsored by GOProud, a Republican gay organization that backs same-sex marriage and homosexuals serving openly in the U.S. military. Excuse me, but same-sex marriage and repeal of "don't-ask-don't tell" don't sound exactly like conservative positions.

You may have heard of GOProud before – it was a proud sponsor of this year's Conservative Political Acton Conference in Washington, D.C. The largest conservative annual gathering in the country, CPAC ignored calls from genuine conservative groups not to allow GOProud to sponsor the conference.

Another so-called “conservative” pundit is Glenn Beck. To be fair to Glenn he refers to himself as a Libertarian, but also as a Conservative. Glenn recently had this exchange with Bill O’Reilly (whom I consider to be from the Left) :

O'Reilly: "Do you believe that gay marriage is a threat to the country in any way?"

Beck: "A threat to the country?"

O'Reilly: "Yeah, is it going to harm it in any way?"

Beck: (laughing) "No I don't. Will the gays come and get us?"

O'Reilly: "No, OK, is it going to harm the country in any way?"

Beck: "I believe that Thomas Jefferson said: 'If it neither breaks my leg nor picks my pocket what difference is it to me?'"

Whoa. Is this the same Glenn Beck who previously has said he opposed same-sex marriage, even warning that legalizing gay marriage will inevitably lead to legalizing polygamy?

As adults we can somewhat understand (to a point) where Glenn is coming from here (keep the government out of our bedrooms) but one cannot agree with him on principle. Of course, gay marriage harms society. Mr. Beck, who claims to be a Christian, cannot disagree with this and be a Christian! Oil and water don’t mix! Or, as the good book says, you cannot serve two masters!

Now is a good time to remind everyone. True Christians DO NOT dislike gay people at all. The Christian attitude is one of believing the sexual act is immoral; the person is to be judged by God, not us. By the same token, an adulterer is considered in the same way. It’s the sexual act, not the person. The claim that the act is immoral, BTW, is a claim made by God, not Christians. We choose to believe God, not man!

Benjamin Wiker has done a great job of defining, by bullet-point, what political Conservatism should be, but is not, in today’s political climate. Please review his points and observe how the Republican Party does not fit the definition:

Principle # 1: “Being against” is not enough.

It is tempting to define conservatism entirely negatively, such as being “against big government” or “against taxes” or “against whatever.” The temptation comes from two sources in our own time. The first is the simple fact that the Obama Administration has tried to ram through nearly every item on the far-left agenda thereby causing a significant conservative reaction. The second arises when all the disgruntled sit down for a common tea, and realize that while they agree about what they are against, they have radical disagreements about what they should be for. But no society—and especially not one rapidly unraveling because of fundamental moral and social disagreements—can be salvaged and rebuilt without deep consensus about fundamental things.

Principle # 2: Being for liberty is not enough.

Crying up liberty is, all too frequently, merely a disguised form of “against-ism.” It allows all those who are against something—be it taxes or bureaucratic interference or obscene federal debt—to appear to be for something together. But a pro-family stalwart and a professional pornographer can both stand adamantly against burdensome taxes, bureaucratic niggling, and crushing federal debt. If liberty is defined only negatively, as “freedom from” government interference, then the chaos caused by more fundamental moral and social disagreement will remain untouched.

Principle # 3: Conservatism is more than the Constitution.

Strict adherence to the Constitution is not enough to halt our decline. The Constitution is a very short document that sets out the structure of the federal government and enumerates its powers. It doesn’t define a common way of life or even defend it, but it does presuppose it. That is, the Constitution presupposes deeply shared moral, social, economic, and political principles, and the Bill of Rights was added to protect them. But neither spells them out in the kind of detail that can actually form a common life. How mortifying—so the founders would think—that we would now be thinking it necessary to add an amendment to the Constitution defining marriage as between one man and one woman.

Principle # 4: Conservatism is older and larger than America.

The deepest principles of conservatism are rooted in human nature, and therefore constitute a kind of perennial wisdom that has been available to all peoples at all times. It can be found in the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle, the Elizabethan dramatist Shakespeare, the 18th Century English conservative Edmund Burke, the French aristocrat Alexis de Tocqueville, the 20th Century Austrian economist Friedrich Hayek, as well as among our own founders and citizens. The first place to retreat and regroup during our own time of moral, social, economic, and political confusion is among the great minds who have thought so carefully, deeply, and clearly about conservatism.

Principle # 5: Human wickedness is real, pervasive, and humanly ineradicable.

To say, in Principle # 4, that perennial wisdom is available to all peoples at all times should not mislead us. “Available” doesn’t mean that all nations have availed themselves of this wisdom. In that great English conservative Edmund Burke’s sober words, “History consists for the great part of the miseries brought upon the world by pride, ambition, avarice, revenge, lust, sedition, hypocrisy, ungoverned zeal, and all the train of disorderly appetites.” Recognition of the pervasiveness of human wickedness is an essential part of conservative wisdom, and what makes conservatism sober rather than utopian.

Principle # 6: Government cannot replace the need for moral character.

No form of government, in and of itself, can eradicate wickedness or spin the straw of “self-interest” into the gold of a prosperous and orderly commonwealth. The philosopher Immanuel Kant was dead wrong to state blithely that “As hard as it may sound, the problem of organizing a nation is solvable even for a people comprised of devils (if only they have understanding).” A nation of devils, or merely of men with thoroughly debased characters, will always cleverly use the form of government, however ingeniously contrived, for their own devilry. Democracy doesn’t cure devilry, but it can make it more equitably applied.

Principle # 7: The family is the origin and foundation of society.

The first natural social, moral, and economic unit is the family—not the individual or the state, as modern liberalism asserts. The real family, not what’s left of the family after defining deviancy down. To destroy the family is to destroy the whole social, moral, economic, and political order. To repeat Moynihan’s words, “one unmistakable lesson in American history: A community that allows a large number of young men to grow up in broken families, dominated by women, never acquiring any stable relationship to male authority, never acquiring any set of rational expectations about the future—that community asks for and gets chaos. Crime, violence, unrest, unrestrained lashing out at the whole social structure—that is not only to be expected; it is very near to inevitable.”

Principle # 8: Good government begins in self-government.

There is rather unpleasant inverse proportion between self-government and national government: The less we govern ourselves morally, socially, and economically, the more power national government receives to shoulder our responsibilities. Men who enjoy the benefits of sexuality without the responsibilities marriage hand over to the state the task of providing economically for their wives and children, and cleaning up after the moral and psychological carnage wrought by their absence. Husbands and wives who foolishly steered their families into hopeless mortgage and credit card debt invited a federal rescue by the Socialist minded who always had believed that people were incapable of ruling themselves. Those who will not take care of their own health will usher in a government takeover of an imploded health care system.

Principle # 9: Conservatism is about the fullness of human nature.

Conservatism is more than mere economics. It was none other than Karl Marx that reduced the human being to homo economicus. When conservatives concentrate only on the economy, they by default allow liberals to define our social, moral, cultural, artistic, philosophical, scientific, and theological aspects. More damage has been done in the universities, due to the absence of the conservative mind than by all the ill-conceived government programs combined precisely because their conception occurred among the liberal intelligentsia in academia. Literature is generally debased because it has been left to those hotly defining deviancy down, and the same is true for the bilge flowing from Hollywood.

Principle # 10: Conservatism is essentially religious.

This is the last principle only because it is hardest to achieve. It is actually the first principle, since what we think about God and our place in the universe defines our understanding of human nature and the human good. If we are spiritual and material creatures made in the image of God with a defined moral good we will set ourselves up much differently as a society than if we are mere ephemeral bodies accidentally contrived by a mindless cosmos with no moral goal other than the pursuit of physical pleasure and the avoidance of physical pain. In large part, the history of the Western slide downward is essentially one of increased secularization; that is, a slide from the first view to the second. Defining deviancy down is, again, the way that the left has moved all the boundary markers.

It is very obvious that Glenn and Ann don't adhere to these guidelines.

We Americans may end up reinstating the Republicans this November, but, it will not make any difference in the long run.

The Observer

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Want To Go To Graduate School? Deny Your Christianity!

My daughter will very shortly begin graduate school. Luckily, she will be attending a school which doesn't press it's "humanistic" outrages on it's students. In fact, her area of study is more technical than philosophical.

Some folks aren't so lucky.

As reported on WorldNetDaily, July 22, 2010:

A lawsuit against Augusta State University in Georgia alleges school officials essentially gave a graduate student in counseling the choice of giving up her Christian beliefs or being expelled from the graduate program.

School officials Mary Jane Anderson-Wiley, Paulette Schenck and Richard Deaner demanded student Jen Keeton, 24, go through a "remediation" program after she asserted homosexuality is a behavioral choice, not a "state of being" as a professor said, according to the complaint.

Also named as defendants in the case that developed in May and June are other administrators and the university system's board of regents.

The remediation program was to include "sensitivity training" on homosexual issues, additional outside study on literature promoting homosexuality and the plan that she attend a "gay pride parade" and report on it.

The lawsuit, filed by attorneys working with the Alliance Defense Fund, asserted the school cannot violate the Constitution by demanding that a person's beliefs be changed.

University "faculty have promised to expel Miss Keeton from the graduate Counselor Education program, not because of poor academic showing or demonstrated deficiencies in clinical performance, but simply because she has communicated both inside and outside the classroom that she holds to Christian ethical convictions on matters of human sexuality and gender identity," the law firm explained.

School spokeswoman Kathy Schose today declined to address the allegations in the case but agreed to discuss the counselor teaching program in general.

She cited the American Counseling Association's code of ethics and said students would be required to adopt its provisions.

"There is a code of ethics that govern counselors," she said. "They have to abide by the code of the profession."

Ethics codes generally govern behavior, and Schose denied the school was attempting to alter any student's beliefs or moral values.

But the lawsuit specifically charges the faculty members targeted Keeton's biblically based belief system and values, not her behavior regarding the treatment of any clients, which had not yet happened.

"Schenck told Miss Keeton that it was unethical for her to believe that her convictions should also be shared by other persons. … Schenck explained that while Miss Keeton was free to have points of view about how she personally should conduct and define herself, she may not believe that others should adopt the standards she personally is convinced are true," the lawsuit said.

"Anderson-Wiley confirmed that Miss Keeton will not be able to successfully complete the remediation plan and thus complete the (Augusta State University) counseling program unless she commits to affirming the propriety of gay and lesbian relationships if such an opportunity arises in her future professional efforts," it continued.

ADF Senior Counsel David French contended a public university student "shouldn't be threatened with expulsion for being a Christian and refusing to publicly renounce her faith, but that's exactly what's happening here."

"Simply put, the university is imposing thought reform," he said. "Abandoning one's own religious beliefs should not be a precondition at a public university for obtaining a degree. This type of leftist zero-tolerance policy is in place at far too many universities, and it must stop. Jennifer's only crime was to have the beliefs that she does."

Keeton's own e-mail response to the faculty members who allegedly were pressuring her to adopt a pro-homosexual belief system defines the dispute.

"At times you said that I must alter my beliefs because they are unethical. ... Other times you said that I can keep my beliefs so long as they are only personal and I don't believe that anyone else should believe like me. But that is just another way of saying that I must alter my beliefs, because my beliefs are about absolute truth. ... In order to finish the counseling program you are requiring me to alter my objective beliefs and also to commit now that if I ever may have a client who wants me to affirm their decision to have an abortion or engage in gay, lesbian or transgender behavior, I will do that. I can't alter my biblical beliefs, and I will not affirm the morality of those behaviors in a counseling situation," she wrote.

Faculty members had demanded she "attend at least three workshops … which emphasize … diversity training sensitive toward working with GLBTQ populations." They also wanted her to "develop" her knowledge of homosexuality by reading 10 articles and increasing her exposure to homosexuals and lesbians by attending "the Gay Pride Parade."

According to the complaint documentation, which also seeks a preliminary injunction in the case, Keeton asked Anderson-Wiley how her Christian convictions are any less acceptable than those of a Buddhist or Muslim student. Anderson-Wiley responded, "Christians see this population as sinners."

The complaint alleges Anderson-Wiley specifically told Keeton she was being asked to alter some of her beliefs. The "remediation" program included a statement that Keeton would be dismissed from the program if she chose not to comply, the lawsuit said.

"Unless and until defendant's unconstitutional speech-regulating policies and threatened … actions against Miss Keeton are enjoined, Miss Keeton will suffer and continue to suffer irreparable injury to her constitutional rights," the lawsuit said.

Among the alleged violations of the First and Fourteenth Amendments are viewpoint discrimination, compelled speech, equal protection and freedom of speech, it said.

"By conditioning Miss Keeton's continued enrollment in the (Augusta State University) school counselor master's degree program on her waiver of rights to speech and free exercise of religion … by requiring that she alter her beliefs and speech, and that she … commit to affirm in a hypothetical future context the ethical propriety of transgender and homosexual identification and behavior by others, as well as other values and behaviors she now disapproves, and which violate her religion convictions, defendants have imposed an unconstitutional condition on Miss Keeton," the complaint alleges.

"The First Amendment never permits the government to penalize beliefs in this manner," the complaint said.

The ADF said it also is litigating a case involving a Georgia counselor fired by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention because she would not agree to affirm homosexual behavior. While an earlier similar case at Missouri State has been resolved, there is another in which Eastern Michigan University is defendant on similar allegations.

In the Missouri State case, a social-work professor, Frank Kauffman, eventually was placed on leave as part of a settlement of the lawsuit brought on behalf of student Emily Brooker. The student had refused his assignment to lobby on behalf of homosexual adoptions because it violated her religious beliefs. She then was brought up on ethics charges in the school.

The settlement also included monetary damages and the removal of the charges against her from her record. The school's own commissioned conclusion in the case found "many students and faculty stated a fear of voicing differing opinions. … In fact, 'bullying' was used by both students and faculty to characterize specific faculty."

In the still-pending case involving Eastern Michigan, lawmakers there considered calling top school officials on the carpet after they expelled from a counseling program a Christian student who refused to argue in support of the homosexual lifestyle.

As WND reported, trouble began for master's program student Julea Ward when she refused to accept a client whose issue concerned a homosexual relationship.

The school expelled her from the counseling program March 12, 2009, for refusing to abrogate her own personal religious beliefs and support the homosexual lifestyle.

Since then, Ward has brought a lawsuit through the Alliance Defense Fund Center for Academic Freedom.

Members of the Michigan Senate shortly later approved legislation that includes a provision calling on university counseling programs to evaluate and affirm how they can accommodate the religious beliefs of students.

State Rep. Tom McMillin told WND at the time the case was "extremely alarming," and there was growing support for an effort to penalize universities that don't accommodate religious beliefs.

"This is a state-taxpayer-supported university," he said. "She's got a court case. Hopefully that will be resolved."

In the case, the judge refused to dismiss the complaint, determining there were "genuine issues of material fact" about the school's "true motivations" for dismissing Ward from the program. Further, the judge concluded, the student's actions to avoid in advance a counseling session for which she had reservations probably followed professional ethical guidelines.

The Observer

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Atheism, Feminism, and the Bible

Is Christianity the only religion that respects women? HT: The Tigress

The Observer