Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
United States Navy Birthday
On Oct. 13, 1775, the U.S. Navy was born when the Continental Congress authorized the arming of two sailing vessels with 80 men and 10 carriage guns in order to intercept British supply and munitions transports. The Declaration of Independence came nine months later, followed by the creation of the Department of the Navy in 1798. Today, our Navy is the most powerful in the world.
HT to Patriot Post
Here's to you, sailors! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PhCko6qUGuc
Sunday, September 5, 2010
I don’t think I mentioned about a month ago I finished reading the Bible. I had planned to read it within a year but was about 8 months late. As the months passed I was happy to adopt a leisurely pace. I am reading a little less of the Bible now, as I breeze through a few other books. A friend loaned me “Thr3e” by Ted Dekker, a psycho-thriller which ends with this quotation by Paul:
“I do not understand what I do...It is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me...For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing...I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me...I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin. I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.” Romans 7:15-25
I am not about to say I understand this paradox, which is like so many other unsolvable mysteries. However I am convinced we are, as Bruce Cockburn sang, “habit and skin,” and what follows is surely commonplace to contemplatives. We thoughtfully decide to do very few things per day compared to the vast number of habitual actions: putting on our pants, one leg at a time. Consider further that a significant percentage of those habits are neither neutral nor “good.” So we have taken into ourselves habitual sinful activity: over-eating, being prone to anger, tuning out one’s family...But here’s the rub: we are no longer slaves to that sinful nature. One cannot serve two masters: “one must either serve the one and hate the other, or love the other and despise the first.”
God can free us as readily as we have taken these sinful habits into our daily routine. It is not rocket science, my reader. However it does require a small step of faith. Stop doing it, one time. Pray every day. Allow yourself to be convinced it is actually sinful, and that your life will be better without it. Don’t do it the next day, either. Be thankful for and celebrate the good habits: daily prayer, being circumspect, listening to others and feeling compassion. When asked what God requires of us, I have often said, “To do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.” The Westminster Catechism is perhaps less specific however delightfully instructive: “Man's chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.” So many Christians in my life were never taught, nor did they consider the enjoyment part. Please do! “Greater is He who is in me than he who is in the world!”
Friday, July 30, 2010
Hmmm, Nixon...JFK...who is doing a better job of re-enacting Camelot, Clinton or Obama?
Thursday, July 8, 2010
“That has not been the case I think at any point in U.S. history,” Ferguson said. “It will be the case in the next five years.”...
"In what he called his “light moment,” Ferguson said, “I think there is a way out for the United States. I don’t think its over. But it all hinges on whether you can re-energize the real mainsprings of American power. And those two things are technological innovation and entrepreneurship."
Friday, July 2, 2010
"[T]he hour is fast approaching, on which the Honor and Success of this army, and the safety of our bleeding Country depend. Remember officers and Soldiers, that you are Freemen, fighting for the blessings of Liberty -- that slavery will be your portion, and that of your posterity, if you do not acquit yourselves like men." --George Washington, General Orders, 1776
hattip to Founder's Quote Daily
32"No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 33Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that time will come. 34It's like a man going away: He leaves his house and puts his servants in charge, each with his assigned task, and tells the one at the door to keep watch.
35"Therefore keep watch because you do not know when the owner of the house will come back—whether in the evening, or at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or at dawn. 36If he comes suddenly, do not let him find you sleeping. 37What I say to you, I say to everyone: 'Watch!' " --Gospel of Mark, Ch 13
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Saturday, May 22, 2010
The Epistle of Paul to the Galatians is a powerful, short letter in which he fleshes out to what extent Christians are "under the Law" and how that compares with faith in Christ. It struck me that this argument bears much similarity to the current state of politics in the USA. Why would we want to return to a state of tyranny, whether under the guise of socialism or otherwise? This is the land to which other people flee...and we wish to model ourselves on those rejected models? Isn't this very issue why our country was founded in the first place?
"For freedom Christ set us free; so stand firm and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery." Galatians 5:1
I challenge you to take 15 minutes to read this book of the Bible and consider this analogy. If you can only spare 10 minutes, read 2:11-5:23.
Now I certainly don't mean to diminish the Word of God by making an analogy to human politics. However, I'll bet the founding fathers wouldn't see anything wrong with it, and might even chime in: "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness." 2 Timothy 3:16
Saturday, May 1, 2010
Food for thought… re: Proposition 100, the “temporary” 1% (one percent) sales tax increase.
"The debate over Prop 100—the plan to raise the state’s sales tax by 18 percent—is in full swing and Goldwater is working hard to explain why this tax increase is unnecessary. Goldwater Institute President Darcy Olsen will be debating the issue on Channel 3 this Sunday, May 2, at 5:30 p.m. We hope you’ll have the time to tune in.
"You may remember that 10 years ago we raised the state sales tax with the promise that the new money would go to classrooms. Earlier this year, the state’s Auditor General looked into how that money is being spent and found that just over half makes it to the classroom. The rest gets spent on administration. In fact, less of each dollar spent on education in Arizona makes it to the classroom than before we raised the sales tax ten years ago. About an hour ago we posted a 30 second video on You Tube to explain this little know aspect of the sales tax debate."
emailed to me From: "Starlee Rhoades" of the Goldwater Institute
Sent: Friday, April 30, 2010 3:47:49 PM GMT -07:00 U.S. Mountain Time (Arizona)
Friday, April 30, 2010
After purchasing a box of Marine Tex, I realized I was in a different ballpark. You don’t want to mess around with this stuff…without being thoughtful. All the lessons my Dad taught me 20+ years ago came flooding back: (1) don’t use the same tools for scooping out resin and catalyst, (2) read the instructions, (3) have all your tools and clean-up stuff ready to go, (4) make plenty of extra…and be ready with extra projects to fix with the left-over. And so forth. You don’t want to be a doofus by blowing the job, which could get much more expensive than the cost of the epoxy.
Once the job was complete, I pondered the art of epoxy. Like welding, it’s a true art and one which is coming to a close in this post-modern world. Like hunting and farming. I encourage you to learn another skill and teach it to your kids. Like sharing the Gospel, it won’t be a fruitless endeavor for both you and the recipient.
Monday, April 19, 2010
"The battles of Lexington and Concord were the first military engagements of the American Revolutionary War. They were fought on April 19, 1775, in Middlesex County, Province of Massachusetts Bay, within the towns of Lexington, Concord, Lincoln, Menotomy (present-day Arlington), and Cambridge, near Boston. The battles marked the outbreak of open armed conflict between the Kingdom of Great Britain and its thirteen colonies in the mainland of British North America.
About 700 British Army regulars, under Lieutenant Colonel Francis Smith, were given secret orders to capture and destroy military supplies that were reportedly stored by the Massachusetts militia at Concord. Through effective intelligence gathering, Patriot colonials had received word weeks before the expedition that their supplies might be at risk, and had moved most of them to other locations. They also received details about British plans on the night before the battle, and were able to rapidly notify the area militias of the military movement.
The first shots were fired just as the sun was rising at Lexington. The militia were outnumbered and fell back, and the regulars proceeded on to Concord, where they searched for the supplies. At the North Bridge in Concord, several hundred militiamen fought and defeated three companies of the King's troops. The outnumbered regulars fell back from the Minutemen after a pitched battle in open territory.
More militiamen arrived soon thereafter and inflicted heavy damage on the regulars as they marched back towards Boston. Upon returning to Lexington, Smith's expedition was rescued by reinforcements under Lieutenant-General Hugh Percy. The combined force, now of about 1,700 men, marched back to Boston under heavy fire in a tactical withdrawal and eventually reached the safety of Charlestown. The accumulated militias blockaded the narrow land accesses to Charlestown and Boston, starting the Siege of Boston.
Ralph Waldo Emerson, in his "Concord Hymn", described the first shot fired by the Patriots at the North Bridge as the "shot heard 'round the world," even though it was not the first shot of the war.
God, please bless these United States of America!
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Here's are two samples:
"Tax on Home Sales. Imposes a 3.8 percent tax on home sales and other real estate transactions. Middle-income people must pay the full tax even if they are “rich” for only one day – the day they sell their house and buy a new one."
"Tax on investment income. ObamaCare imposes a 3.8 percent annual tax on investment income of individuals making $200,000 or more and on families making $250,000 or more. The new tax is not indexed to inflation, so more people will fall under it each year. Seniors on fixed incomes and people with IRAs and 401(k) plans will be hit particularly hard."
How do you think that's going to affect homeownership, the real estate market, individual investing, the economy? Just remember, a government discourages activities by taxing them. Hmmm.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
In our Bible study tonight we discussed I Peter Chapter 2, in which we are called to respect all human authority which is over us. This is one of the Bible's "hard sayings," especially for Americans, not only because it calls us to do something difficult, but also because we have a hard time understanding practically what it means. Similarly, the chapter continues by instructing slaves to obey their masters. What can this possibly mean to Americans?
My friend Dave, AKA Troubled Corinthian, made the point that Americans are under the Constitution, and that every American is, in effect, a sovereign individual. We have no master but God. This has interesting ramifications when applied to whether we should obey a law which we understand to be un-Constitutional, let alone such laws as may be in violation of our Christianity. Be that as it may, the focus here is that Jesus is our Lord, and we are slaves to Him. I repeat, this is difficult to understand for the modern mind, let alone to live under. All Americans are equal under the Constitution (if not treated equally in practice, another topic for another time), and all Christians are slaves to Christ.
Let's consider Mark 9:14-29, the story of the demon-possessed son, whom the disciples did not have faith to heal. Jesus rebuked them for their faithlessness, and we recall another saying of Christ, that if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can tell a mountain to throw itself into the sea, and it will. Now consider Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples, and gave them all kinds of power. Do you have faith that is true? Although we often bemoan particular losses of liberty in recent decades, imagine American life compared to human history: how blessed we are with political freedoms and earthly riches! Not only a chicken in every pot and a car in every garage, but a TV in every living room as well! Few of us contemplate how different much of the outside world is, where the right to gather and worship God is not protected by law. May the American dream help move our faith a little closer to appreciating the difference between a fisherman's life before and after Christ entered his life?
The founding fathers said, "Yes." They used overtones of the Great Commission and adamantly believed it was God's Will that the United States be formed and consciously planned to spread liberty. If we are truly thankful for the many blessings America bestows--especially compared to the rest of the world and all of world history--how much more should we be thankful to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns forever, who died to redeem humanity and now lives, Whose yoke is easy and Whose burden is light? His love and power is infinite, and He has invited us to be adopted sons and daughters into His kingdom. What an inheritance!
So although as Americans we struggle to understand what it means to suffer for Christ, or to be a slave, our imaginations are blessed nonetheless by comparing our blessings here on earth to the endless riches God has yet to unfold. Let us never take our blessings for granted, nor forget even America is only a tiny glimpse of the freedoms in store for all believers in Christ.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
ABC News found that Trijicon, which makes rifle scopes for the military, stamps references to Bible verses on its equipment . The defense contractor subsequently announced  that it will voluntarily stop stamping these references on combat rifle sights. These sights are used in Iraq and Afghanistan — sometimes to train Muslims, sometimes to shoot them. According to ABC News, this is very important. If a Muslim were to see this code on the side of a rifle and then look up the verse in one of the many Bibles you can easily find in Muslim countries, then that Muslim might become indoctrinated with Christianity and then … chaos or something.
read it all...
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Boy, this sure sounds like a host of federal bureaus to me. With Massachusetts electing a conservative senator to fill "Ted Kennedy's seat," I look forward to seeing that big train turning.
Hattip again to Founders Quotes Daily
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Star of Bethlehem: you will be amazed by the ground-breaking astronomical discovery behind this, whether you're a believer or not. http://www.bethlehemstar.net/
John MacArthur: Taking the mystery out of knowing God's Will. In short, God Wills that you be:
1. Saved (from your sins, and eternally)
2. Spirit-filled (Holy Spirit)
3. Sanctified (separated from sin)
4. Submissive and humble before Almighty God
5. Suffering in this world, as did Christ, but NOT like He suffered, necessarily
7. Free to act as you will, as long as you do the above!
And the glue which holds us all together, awesome science and speaking. Here's an excerpt: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_e4zgJXPpI4
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Chalk this as one of those lists which would do well do tape on the mirror.
What are the components of the Warrior Mindset?
1. A firm belief in G-D
2. Knowing the deep love of family, friends and country
3. Belief in the sanctity of human life
4. Knowing the difference between what is right and what is wrong
5. Having the strength to act on what is right
6. Having the strength to resist that which is wrong
7. Strength to overcome fear when necessary
8. Taking responsibility for one's safety and the safety of dependants
9. Wisdom to be selective in one's battles
10. Alert to one's surrounding
11. Profiling and evaluating people and things on a constant basis
12. Making plans of action dynamically and continually
13. Being committed to any necessary action
14. Placing the outcome of one's actions above the personal cost of the action
15. Willingness to terminate the life of another who threatens innocent lives
16. Accepting the possibility of death as a consequence of engaging evil
17. Commitment to training and further improving skill sets as well as deepening the understanding of the spiritual basis for being a Warrior
while the government violins get new strings and play on. Enough.
(If you haven't yet signed up for Founders Quotes Daily, get thee hence.)
"The multiplication of public offices,
increase of expense beyond income,
growth and entailment of a public debt,
are indications soliciting the employment of the pruning knife."
--Thomas Jefferson, letter to Spencer Roane, 1821
Unless you think the founders weren't that smart,
or that their thoughts don't apply to modern society, or...
...in which case I'm not sure what to do with you.
Monday, January 4, 2010
Indeed, unless you are a law student, it's a rare person who picks up, say, the Federalist Papers for light reading. Also, I think the below service is excellent for sharpening one's mind in the writing of our founders. I easily recall how in college my mind worked to process reading Shakespeare, and within a few plays it was cake. Much easier than learning a new language, but it takes a little patience and attention at the start. Of course the founders came much later than Shakespeare, and their language is the same as ours...excepting their glorious choice of wordsmithing...e.g.:
"There is something so far-fetched and so extravagant in the idea of danger to liberty from the militia that one is at a loss whether to treat it with gravity or with raillery; whether to consider it as a mere trial of skill, like the paradoxes of rhetoricians; as a disingenuous artifice to instil prejudices at any price; or as the serious." --Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 29
I thoroughly enjoy daily quotations from this service, followed by weekly editorials.