Evangelical atheists

Dinesh D’Souza wrote a terrific article about how Atheism, not religion, is the real force behind the mass murders of history.  Various materialists have been active in spreading their un-faith, but their reasoning is poor. 

A few observations about these rabid Darwinists who consider themselves Evangelical Atheists:

  • Ever notice how they focus nearly all their energy on Christianity?  When will their first missionary trip to Muslim countries begin?  Pack light, guys, because your trip won’t last long.  A one-way ticket is all you’ll need.  You’ll find out that Christians are much more tolerant than you thought.
  • The Crusades included a fair amount of non-Christian behavior, so I’m not sure how you can hold Jesus and his authentic followers accountable for them.  Plus, I have a firm rule about not taking responsibility for things that happened nearly one thousand years before I was born. 
  • They are completely blind or deliberately ignorant of the horrors of what their dream culture looked like in Communist China and Russia.  Those countries had pure atheism and the near-complete obliteration of religious life.  Other than the minor issue of nearly one hundred million people brutally murdered, it was a swell idea.   But that was Jesus’ fault, right? 
  • These atheists better hope we stay religious, because our faith is the only thing keeping us from beating them to a pulp.  (Just kidding!)
  • Aren’t they the ones so keen to keep religion and science separated?  Perhaps they should follow their own advice.  They are doing a bad job of pretending that their mission is just pro-science and not anti-religion.
  • If Darwin and these Materialists are right, then dominating weaker people and countries would be perfectly natural and acceptable.  
  • We actually have a fair amount in common with them.  They think Hinduism, Islam and other non-Christian religions are false, and so do we.  We just disagree about Christianity.

Leviticus 22-24

Greetings!  This reading is Leviticus 22-24.

This section contains further reminders that the sacrifices had to be without defect, which foreshadowed the perfect sacrifice of Jesus.  This reminds me of when King David said:

1 Chronicles 21:24 But King David replied to Araunah, “No, I insist on paying the full price. I will not take for the Lord what is yours, or sacrifice a burnt offering that costs me nothing.”

God specified various seasons and holy days (holidays) for the Israelites.  One purpose was to help them remember all that God had done for them.  He was quite serious about having them all observe the holidays. 

Leviticus 23:29 Anyone who does not deny himself on that day must be cut off from his people.

The offerings were to be the firstfruits (the first part of their crops).  We should always give our first and best to God, not what is left over (if anything).  

They were also to leave food for the poor to pick up:

Leviticus 23:22 “‘When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Leave them for the poor and the alien. I am the Lord your God.’”

God was also quite serious about not using his name improperly. 

Leviticus 24:15-16 Say to the Israelites: ‘If anyone curses his God, he will be held responsible; anyone who blasphemes the name of the Lord must be put to death. The entire assembly must stone him. Whether an alien or native-born, when he blasphemes the Name, he must be put to death.’

Reflect on what stood out to you in this reading and share your comments and questions if you like.

Barack Obama: Pro-partial birth abortion, among other things

Also see The scariest part about Obama

McCain is significantly better than Obama in every key area:

  • Pro-life – McCain has a track record of supporting good judges, while Obama is one of the the most extreme pro-abortion advocates I’ve heard of (and that is not an exaggeration – just keep reading).  Consider his bizarre standards for judges: Instead of picking people who can interpret the law honestly, he wants this: “We need somebody who’s got the heart, the empathy, to recognize what it’s like to be a young teenage mom. The empathy to understand what it’s like to be poor, or African-American, or gay, or disabled, or old. And that’s the criteria by which I’m going to be selecting my judges.”
  • McCain has much better fiscal policies.  Obama wants to take your money to give to his pet projects, but donates a pittance himself.  Giving other people’s money at the point of a gun is not charity.  “Spreading the wealth around” is socialism, and it doesn’t work.
  • We’ll be far, far safer with McCain.  Obama is relatively clueless about foreign affairs, would have us surrender in Iraq and set the Middle East progress back 50 years, and is so naive as to think we could or should eliminate nuclear weapons.
  • His energy policies will keep the cost of fuel up for decades.  McCain knows we need to drill now and get nuclear plants started asap.  This will provide jobs, reduce greenhouse emissions and reduce energy costs for us all.
  • Obama is anti-free speech.  Watch how they try to annihilate anyone who dares to even question him, such as Joe the Plumber.  He and the Democrats will want to impose the deceptively named Fairness Doctrine, so they can try to silence conservative radio while leaving the grossly biased mainstream media untouched.
  • McCain pays his female staffers more, on the average, than his male staffers; Obama, however, pays women $0.83 for every dollar earned by men.”
  • Obama is not about change at all.  He is about the same old liberal politics.  McCain is the poster boy for real change – whether you agree with the change or not – and for reaching across the aisle. 
  • Obama lies when saying he’ll reduce taxes for 95% of the people.  Nearly half don’t pay taxes, so it is impossible to lower theirs.  He is just talking about more welfare.
  • He will be pro-gay marriage.  Just wait.

Barack Obama, hero and “savior” of the left, isn’t just pro-abortion, he’s pro-partial birth abortion.   80% of the population disagrees with this stance, so be sure to tell others.  Just Google “obama partial birth abortion letter” or something similar if you want more sources. He is against informed consent and parental notification.  In his world, your junior high daughter needs your permission to take an aspirin but not to have an abortion.

He reveals his deceptiveness and/or ignorance with his latest ads trying to say that McCain will make abortion illegal. But overturning Roe doesn’t make abortion illegal. It returns the power to the states – to the people – and lets them decide. California, Massachusetts, NY, etc. can keep killing the unborn all they like.

He also defended the rights of hospitals in Illinois to let children die outside the womb by repeatedly opposing the Born Alive Infant Protection Act against infanticide and he is against parental notification laws.

He lies over and over on his views.  He is as radically pro-abortion as one can be.  Read this thorough analysisby Randy Alcorn to see what I mean.

In his July 17, 2007 speech to the Planned Parenthood Action Fund he said,

“We know that a woman’s right to make a decision about how many children she wants to have and when— without government interference—is one of the most fundamental freedoms we have in this country. . . . I have worked on this issue for decades now. I put Roe at the center of my lesson plan on reproductive freedom when I taught constitutional law. . . So, you know where I stand. . . The first thing I’d do as president is sign the Freedom of Choice Act. That’s the first thing that I’d do.”

If you don’t know about the Freedom of Choice Act, it was written by the most radical proabortion activists because they saw informed consent and parental consent laws being passed at the state level. They wanted something powerful that would dismantle anything that could serve to reduce abortions through requiring that people be told the truth before an abortion or before their sixteen year old, who can’t be given an aspirin without their permission, can have an abortion.

Here’s a piece on the audacity of being an abortion survivor.  Remember, Obama doesn’t just see the right of unrestricted abortions in the Constitution, he sees the right to a corpse. If the abortion fails, then that shouldn’t be a barrier to a dead human.

Obama is lying about others lying– will the MSM check the facts and let voters know his real stand on abortion, partial birth abortion (aka infanticide) and his opposition to the Born Alive Infants Protection Act?

Obama wants change . . . except when it comes to abortion as birth control, inside the womb or outside it.

Obama wants you . . .

  • to pay for abortion!
  • to sanction the killing of infants born alive!
  • to believe that pregnancy is a “punishment”!
  • to accept partial birth abortion!
  • to forget his close association with radical abortion groups like NARAL and PP!
  • to endorse liberal activist Supreme Court Judges that support abortion in the 9th month!
  • to embrace a culture of death!

Listen to his own words, plus his silly comment about the question of when life begins being above his pay grade:

He couldn’t be more clear about his plans:

See The Infanticide Shibboleth for more.  Simply put, Obama is super-duper pro-abortion, and pro-infanticide as well.

He doesn’t even hide his hostility towards preborn human beings.  Consider this quote (emphasis added):

“Look, I got two daughters — 9 years old and 6 years old,” he said. “I am going to teach them first about values and morals, but if they make a mistake, I don’t want them punished with a baby.”

News flash: Sex has consequences – emotional, physical and spiritual.  Destroying – and I do mean destroying – the evidence doesn’t take the consequences away.   

Despite being portrayed as a moderate, he is also against traditional marriage, including the Defense of Marriage Act

He has bad theology, thinking that other religions will get you to Heaven (of course, our current President is guilty of saying this nonsense as well). 

More hypocrisy: He wants to take lots of your money for his pet liberal causes, but donates a pittance himself.  Once again, folks, charity is when you give your own money, not when you force others at gunpoint to support your causes.

I can’t believe he threw his grandmother under the bus.  If anyone uttered “typical black person,” their political career would be over.  Yet he gets a pass for saying, “typical white person.”

Updates: Click here for a long list of reasons why he would make a bad President.

Leviticus 19-21

Greetings!  This reading is Leviticus 19-21.

The chapter heading for Leviticus 19 in my Bible says, “Various laws,” and that describes it well.  There is a mix of laws from the 10 Commandments, some other moral laws and some ceremonial laws.  There is a lot here, so please read the verses closely.

Verse 1 says a lot of about what God wants from us: “Be holy because I, the Lord your God, am Holy.”  That sets the bar rather high. 

Verses 9-10 show how the Israelites were to help the poor by letting them pick up leftovers from the harvest.   This is much different from welfare, where able-bodied people can do nothing and still get money. 

God loves justice and does not want “partiality given to the poor or favoritism to the great.”  Everyone is to be judged fairly.

Note how verse 18 says, “love your neighbor as yourself.”  I used to think that was just from the New Testament.  I was surprised to find it in Leviticus.

Verse 28 says not to get tattoos.  This may be a ceremonial law, but I still think that wisdom and discernment should go into any decisions to permanently alter one’s appearance. 

We are not to mistreat aliens (though that doesn’t mean we have to have open borders). 

Chapter 20 addresses punishments for sin.  Some people like to use these passages to discredit other moral teachings in the Bible (usually 18:22 – “Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.”)  Their arguments are along the lines of, “Do you put your kids to death for disobeying you?  Of course not.  So these other laws don’t apply either.” (They are referring to v. 9 which says not to curse your parents).  They also point out that breaking the Sabbath could be punishable by death, as if to discount the severity of that sin for the Israelites.

These people are missing the point.  The punishments were specifically for the Israelites, who were living under a theocracy (God was their King).  In other governments the punishments are set up differently.  But that doesn’t mean that the underlying morals don’t still apply. 

There were various sins that could yield the death penalty for the Israelites.  The issue isn’t whether or not those penalties still apply (they don’t) but whether God considered those sins to be very serious (He does).  People want to downplay the sin of homosexual behavior by mocking the punishment for cursing your parents or breaking the Sabbath, implying that those sins aren’t so bad so neither is homosexual behavior.  But that gets it backwards.  You judge how seriously God considered a sin by how severe the punishment was.  And capital punishment was as serious as it could get.

Chapter 21 contains additional rules for priests.  Note that just as the animals to be sacrificed could not have defects, the priests could not have defects, either.  God wasn’t discriminating unjustly.  He was pointing to the perfection to be found in Jesus.

Reflect on what stood out to you in this reading and share your comments and questions if you like.

Book recommendation: The Flames of Rome

If you like historical fiction, check out The Flames of Rome by Paul L. Maier.  He is a professor of Ancient History at Western Michigan University.  I have heard him on various radio shows and read a few of his books and have always been impressed with his passion and accuracy. 

The story of Emperors Claudius and Nero and some of the early Christians was fascinating by itself, and the exhaustively researched and documented facts provide a simultaneous history lesson.  I had heard bits about this period of history but nothing this comprehensive.  It doesn’t hold back on the excesses of Nero and others.  

The author is very disciplined with his rules for historical fiction: No proper names are invented, nothing knowingly contradicts historical facts and great care is exercised to fill in gaps.  Any created or assumed portions are documented in the end notes. 

Where multiple theories exist, such as the source of the great fires of Rome, the most likely scenario is used in the narrative while others are analyzed in the end notes. 

This gives you a glimpse of how the early church started and the challenges they faced.

Leviticus 16-18

Greetings!  This reading is Leviticus 16-18.

Chapter 16 deals with the Day of Atonement (aka Yom Kippur), where the sanctuary and the people are symbolically cleansed from the pollution of Israel’s sins.  The Israelites had many feast days throughout the year, but this was a day of fasting.  While sins were dealt with throughout the year, their seriousness required an annual day to address them as well.

This is where the concept of a scapegoat comes from:

Leviticus 16:20-22 “When Aaron has finished making atonement for the Most Holy Place, the Tent of Meeting and the altar, he shall bring forward the live goat. He is to lay both hands on the head of the live goat and confess over it all the wickedness and rebellion of the Israelites—all their sins—and put them on the goat’s head. He shall send the goat away into the desert in the care of a man appointed for the task. The goat will carry on itself all their sins to a solitary place; and the man shall release it in the desert.

Chapter 17 warns against drinking blood, among other things, because the life of a creature is in its blood.

Chapter 18 is an important and often controversial chapter because of verse 22: “Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.”  That seems like a pretty straightforward condemnation of homosexual behavior.  Some people try to say it is just a ceremonial law that only applied to Israelites and their worship, but if you review the context carefully you’ll see that it is not the case.

The book of Leviticus does contain many ceremonial laws that were just for the Israelites. God wanted to set them apart from other peoples, so He gave them some special laws regarding clothes, food, worship, etc. But here’s why calling verse 22 a ceremonial law is incorrect.  When you read the passages surrounding Leviticus 18:22 it is obvious that it is not a ceremonial law. One of the most important guidelines to understanding the Bible is to read verses in context (What is the nature of the whole passage? Who is writing? To whom are they writing?)

Leviticus 18 contains many moral laws, and they are sandwiched by strong statements that the Israelites are not to behave like the pagan Canaanites did (the Israelites are about to displace them and take over the land). God did not expect the Canaanites and other nations to follow the ceremonial laws, but He did expect them to follow the moral laws written on our hearts. The Canaanites had committed the offenses noted in Leviticus 18 for hundreds of years, so God was judging them. Here is the beginning of chapter 18:

The Lord said to Moses, “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘I am the Lord your God. You must not do as they do in Egypt, where you used to live, and you must not do as they do in the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you. Do not follow their practices. You must obey my laws and be careful to follow my decrees. I am the Lord your God. Keep my decrees and laws, for the man who obeys them will live by them. I am the Lord.

And here is the end of chapter 18:

“‘Do not defile yourselves in any of these ways, because this is how the nations that I am going to drive out before you became defiled. Even the land was defiled; so I punished it for its sin, and the land vomited out its inhabitants. But you must keep my decrees and my laws. The native-born and the aliens living among you must not do any of these detestable things, for all these things were done by the people who lived in the land before you, and the land became defiled. And if you defile the land, it will vomit you out as it vomited out the nations that were before you. “‘Everyone who does any of these detestable things—such persons must be cut off from their people. Keep my requirements and do not follow any of the detestable customs that were practiced before you came and do not defile yourselves with them. I am the Lord your God.’”

If someone thinks verse 22 is a ceremonial law, do they think the verse before or the verse after are ceremonial laws? (Leviticus 18:21 says, “Do not give any of your children to be sacrificed to Molech, for you must not profane the name of your God. I am the Lord.” and Leviticus 18:23 says, “Do not have sexual relations with an animal and defile yourself with it. A woman must not present herself to an animal to have sexual relations with it; that is a perversion.”)

Read Leviticus 18 yourself and ask if Leviticus 18:22 sounds like a ceremonial law (such as what food to eat and what clothes to wear) or a moral law.  And consider the context of who God is talking about.  He would not have expected the Canaanites to follow his ceremonial laws, but He is judging them harshly for violating the laws set forth in chapter 18. 

If you want to know more about how to respond to pro-gay theology, the best reference on this debate I have seen is Responding to Pro-Gay Theology by Joe Dallas. I highly recommend it.

Reflect on what stood out to you in this reading and share your comments and questions if you like.