Jesus Christ, Lord of the State and How That Informs My Voting

As a post-mil, “Thy Kingdom Come” kinda guy here is where my difficulty lies.  For a Christian to actively support a person for a position of authority over the State is to also promote that person to a position of authority over the members of Christ’s body, the Church. To promote a non-Trinitarian to that position is, I believe, very problematic. If God is Lord over the State, which I believe he is, then to elect someone within the LDS to the presidency is to give tacit approval to, or at least gross ambivalence toward, the doctrine of Joseph Smith and the LDS Apostles.

So, what is different between this case and supporting someone who advocates for example an unjust preemptive war or is ambivalent to homosexual unions? We all make compromises when we vote these days. What makes this more significant than Ron Paul’s ambivalence toward the Morning After Pill, Senator Santorum’s desire to treat Iranian nuclear scientists as Al-Qaida members, or Newt Gingrich horrid personal life?  Two things…

First, our primary call as Christians is to expand the Kingdom of Christ. We are his workmanship created for good works and the first and greatest work is that we should go out and make disciples of all men, teaching them and baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Why would we actively work to promote the Mormon god and his disciples?

Second, the other candidates I mentioned may be addressed within the governance of the Church and, God willing, one day with a state in submission to Christ. We can even call a man like President Obama back to the truth of his God as revealed in Scripture, pray for him as a Christian who may yet return to the Triune God of his Baptism. If our particular Church were in authority over him – we could discipline him in accordance with the Scriptures that he might repent.  None of these things are an option with a Mormon.

This is the key for me.

I welcome your thoughts…

 al sends

Baking Thoughts on Warren

Here is a transcript of Rick Warren’s prayer from the inauguration. Hasty, preliminary, and half-baked comments follow.

Let us pray.

Almighty God, our Father, everything we see and everything we can’t see exists because of you alone. It all comes from you. It all belongs to you. It all exists for your glory.

History is your story. The Scripture tells us, “Hear O Israel, the Lord is our God. The Lord is One.” And you are the compassionate and merciful one. And you are loving to everyone you have made.

Now, today, we rejoice not only in America’s peaceful transfer of power for the 44th time. We celebrate a hingepoint of history with the inauguration of our first African American president of the United States. We are so grateful to live in this land, a land of unequaled possibility, where the son of an African immigrant can rise to the highest level of our leadership. And we know today that Dr. King and a great cloud of witnesses are shouting in heaven.

Give to our new President, Barack Obama, the wisdom to lead us with humility, the courage to lead us with integrity, the compassion to lead us with generosity. Bless and protect him, his family, Vice President Biden, the cabinet, and every one of our freely elected leaders.

Help us, O God, to remember that we are Americans, united not by race, or religion, or blood, but to our commitment to freedom and justice for all. When we focus on ourselves, when we fight each other, when we forget you, forgive us. When we presume that our greatness and our prosperity is ours alone, forgive us. When we fail to treat our fellow human beings and all the earth with the respect that they deserve, forgive us. And as we face these difficult days ahead, may we have a new birth of clarity in our aims, responsibility in our actions, humility in our approaches, and civility in our attitudes, even when we differ.

Help us to share, to serve and to seek the common good of all. May all people of goodwill today join together to work for a more just, a more healthy and a more prosperous nation and a peaceful planet. And may we never forget that one day all nations and all people will stand accountable before you. We now commit our new president and his wife, Michelle and his daughters, Malia and Sasha, into your loving care.

I humbly ask this in the name of the one who changed my life, Yeshua, Isa, Jesus [Spanish pronunciation], Jesus, who taught us to pray:

“Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.”

1. The prayer was prayed in the name of Jesus. Whatever else was spoken, it was a Christian prayer. Warren was being a faithful minister of the gospel.

2. I think it is quite significant that he led the assembled company in the Lord’s Prayer. Frankly, I was surprised. It added a connection to Scripture, to liturgy, to tradition, that rooted the prayer in the historic Christian faith and the Christian church.

3. Warren delighted in the fact that “we are Americans, united not by race, or religion, or blood.” Not united by race or blood? Certainly. Not united by religion? Is this a good and acceptable thing? Is it a descriptive statement or a prescriptive statement? What if he had prayed: “we are Americans united not by race or blood and though not bound by religion, yet we must repent, yet there is but one Lord of our nation, Jesus Christ the crucified and risen one.” Would he have been roundly drummed out of Washington … by other Christian ministers?

4. The tired rhetoric of “a peaceful planet” makes me want to vomit. The knowledge of the Lord will cover the earth as the waters cover the sea. That is the only peace.

5. “And may we never forget that one day all nations and all people will stand accountable before you.” Psalm 2. Yes.

6. It lacked poetry. It leaves me feeling dry. Whatever we might say about Rev. Lowery’s benediction (see #7), it had a certain rhythm and poetic texture to it, with rich biblical imagery and powerful metaphors. Warren’s prayer felt like a Baptist preacher — now, let me finish — giving an invitation prayer. I know what he’s going to say before he says it.

7. Compared to Lowery (“Lord, in the memory of all the saints who from their labors rest, and in the joy of a new beginning, we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get back, when brown can stick around — (laughter) — when yellow will be mellow — (laughter) — when the red man can get ahead, man — (laughter) — and when white will embrace what is right.”), Warren was positively dignified and sober.

You have any half-baked thoughts of your own?

Bible Belt Education…

… less bible and a belt to the mouth.

My friends…  Can anyone give me a reason to keep your children in the government school system?  Here is an article in our local paper, picked up by DRUDGE and soon to be commented on by WWW.HOTAIR.COM  (I am sending them a link)…

A federal judge has ordered the Santa Rosa County School District to stop promoting religion and prayer in the classroom and at school events.

U.S. District Court Judge Casey Rodgers ruled Friday after school officials admitted allegations in a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union.

The ACLU sued the district, Pace High School Principal Frank Lay and former Superintendent John Rogers on behalf of two unnamed Pace High students.

Rodgers’ order prohibits employees from:

n Promoting prayer at school-sponsored events, including graduation.

n Planning or financing religious baccalaureate services.

n Promoting religious beliefs to students in class or during school-sponsored events and activities.

n Holding school-sponsored events at churches.

Frank Lay was a track coach when I went to school at Pace. My mom and Coach Lay’s sister were best friends growing up and he is a good man, a godly man, laboring for the good of the kingdom in a difficult situation.  It saddens me that he had to go through all of this.

Back to my question… Any takers?  Anyone at all?

al sends

Ice, Ice Baby…

…it’s the truth.  From Pravda:

The earth is now on the brink of entering another Ice Age, according to a large and compelling body of evidence from within the field of climate science. Many sources of data which provide our knowledge base of long-term climate change indicate that the warm, twelve thousand year-long Holocene period will rather soon be coming to an end, and then the earth will return to Ice Age conditions for the next 100,000 years.

I still have my Y2K supplies, which I had rolled over from my “88 reasons Christ shall return in 88″ stash.  Those supplies were reserved for those who were left behind and they were stored in our family bomb shelter, built in the 60s.

At the fall of the Soviet Union I moved them to my boat house, located 10 miles from the coast, waiting for glacier melt, but I will now move them into our underground, geothermic capsule.  It is buried near a hot spring in Alabama.

Still trusting in Christ,

al sends

The Rock Is Rolling…

Psalm 95:1-3

1 Oh come, let us sing to the LORD!
Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation.
2 Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving;
Let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms.
3 For the LORD is the great God,
And the great King above all gods.

Our God is a Rock of Salvation.  He is not a God of an ethereal salvation.  His Salvation is not a wisp of wind or permeating mist.  It is solid.  It is foundational.  We may stand on it and Him with confidence.

Although we stand on a Rock, whereby we cannot be moved, that Rock is itself moving through history.   Daniel sees this Rock or Stone moving through history and laying waste to the kingdoms of this world. He describes it this way in Dan 2:34-35

34 You (Nebuchadnezzar)  watched while a stone was cut out without hands, which struck the image on its feet of iron and clay, and broke them in pieces. 35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold were crushed together, and became like chaff from the summer threshing floors; the wind carried them away so that no trace of them was found. And the stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth.

Now, this is not simply the destruction of the kingdoms that rise up in opposition to the one True Kingdom, this is Salvation!   You see, that Stone becomes a mountain which fills the whole earth.

On Tuesday there will be an election in this country and we will elect a man who in many ways is opposed to the Kingdom of Christ; but I want you to know that the Rock of our Salvation is still moving.  He is not bogged down in some marshy pit of noble history.  And if our kingdom should stand in His way, shake its collective fist at Him or call ourselves “the Rock that shall not be moved”, then the Mountain shall grow over the top of us and Salvation will still, without fail, come to the world.

He is the Rock of our Salvation and He rolls along.

al sends

Pray, Pray, Pray, Pray, Vote, Pray…

… and then pray.

Let me just say that I have not voted yet.

I liked Piper’s video on the election and believe that his reasoning is pretty much in keeping with what I believe in most of this.  Jesus Christ is King and I hate that some believe that spreading Democracy from Jerusalem, to Judea and Samaria and the uttermost parts of the earth, will bring peace to the world (cutting my eyes at the Republican Party).  In the same way, I do not believe that Democracy will end abortion.  It just won’t.

We, in the Demcratic West, believe that we are teachers, sophisticates, in need of nothing.  But in reality we are dunces, rubes and suffer loss at almost every turn.  Can there be any hope of repentance without discipline from God?  I am afraid that discipline may come in the form of an Obama presidency (or a McCain presidency for that matter).

Here is the bottom line though: If McCain wins he may, and I really mean may, appoint judges that actually read the constitution and believe what it says.  If Obama wins his nominees won’t and that will leave us exactly where we are right now, with abortion legal and babies dying by the millions.  The rate of abortion will not increase if Obama is elected and only ‘may’ go down if McCain is put into office.

That ‘may’ is enough for me though.  I am changing my flirtation with a “No” vote to one for McCain and I will pray, vote, pray, support the crisis pregnancy center, pray, and worship God.  And pray.

Thanks for all your thoughts on this issue.

al sends

Its Just Numbers…

… very large numbers.

Just to let you know… If we took the $700,000,000,000.00 promised in the government bailout bill passed by the House yesterday and divided that amongst the 300,000,000 or so men, women and children currently in the US, we would each get over $2300.00.   For my family that would mean $13,800.00.

They are not giving that money directly to us though.  We would just waste it on paddle balls, wacky-taffy and rides at the fair.

Thankfully the government is turning all that cash over to investment bankers.  Some of whom have nice government jobs, our current Treasury Secretary for example.

Look at this CNN article from 2007:

A big question mark hangs over Wall Street: How is it that the top firms consistently beat the odds, earning spectacular returns on their own investments? Last year the five biggest U.S. investment banks – Morgan Stanley (Charts), Goldman Sachs (Charts), Merrill Lynch (Charts), Lehman Brothers (Charts) and Bear Stearns (Charts) – generated $61 billion from proprietary trading, about half their total revenue and a 54 percent increase over 2005.

Let’s see…

Morgan Stanley almost failed this year, relying upon Mitsubishi UFJ of Japan to bail them out.

Goldman Sachs lost half its stock value during the last couple of months yet is expected to do really well during the bail out. (Henry Paulson, our Current Treasury Secretary, was Goldman’s CEO before he became a public servant.)

Merrill Lynch is no more… owned by Bank of America.  Good news though.. the CEO of Merrill gets a great job at BoA.  He gets to run all the business elements that were formerly part of Merrill.  How great is that?!?

Lehman Brothers is bankrupt.

Bears Stearns was one of the first failures.  Of course it may not have been their fault… it seems that some of their competitors may have spread false rumors about the company, driving them to sell their holdings to JP Morgan for pennies on the dollar.

Please remember… place your treasure in Heaven where neither rust nor robber barons can get at it.

For your edification:

Matt 6:19-34

19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal;  20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.  21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

22″The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light.  23 But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness!

24″No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.

25 “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?  26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?  27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?

28 “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin;  29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.  30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’  32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.  33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.  34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

al sends

Train Them Up…

…it is what we are to do.

I once asked a friend of mine why he had not Baptized his teenage son?  He said that his son had not show the fruit of regeneration.  Seeing as how he raised his son in a Christian home and taught him the scriptures from his youth I asked if his son had ever requested to be baptized.  He said he had when he was younger, but the father did not think he truly understood the gospel.  He had made professions before, but they never seemed to come with any lasting fruit.

What if a father had a rule that only those who proclaimed,  “Daddy – king of table,” and really believed it, could eat with the family.   What could the father reasonably be expected to do to get his children to the table?  I think the “really believed it” part is beyond him and he should let his children eat with the family upon profession.

It would be tough to teach a child he was part of the family if he had to sit the corner at meal time, even though he consistently proclaimed every day – DADDY, YOU ARE KING OF THE TABLE!

Rom 10:8-11
8 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): 9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”

al sends