FINDING PEACE IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE 2012 ELECTION — PART 5

Onward, Christian Soldiers

Here is the last part of FINDING PEACE IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE 2012 ELECTION. I cannot offer a grand plan to defeat the Socialist Democrats, I have only two suggestions, that we read our Bibles and pray. What matters is God’s plan for you, not mine.

When we seek earthly guidance, we seek guidance that would pit us against earthly foes. In the Bible, the Apostle Paul points us to a spiritual enemy.

Ephesians 6:10-18 Good News Translation (GNT)

10 Finally, build up your strength in union with the Lord and by means of his mighty power. 11 Put on all the armor that God gives you, so that you will be able to stand up against the Devil’s evil tricks. 12 For we are not fighting against human beings but against the wicked spiritual forces in the heavenly world, the rulers, authorities, and cosmic powers of this dark age. 13 So put on God’s armor now! Then when the evil day comes, you will be able to resist the enemy’s attacks; and after fighting to the end, you will still hold your ground.

14 So stand ready, with truth as a belt tight around your waist, with righteousness as your breastplate, 15 and as your shoes the readiness to announce the Good News of peace. 16 At all times carry faith as a shield; for with it you will be able to put out all the burning arrows shot by the Evil One. 17 And accept salvation as a helmet, and the word of God as the sword which the Spirit gives you. 18 Do all this in prayer, asking for God’s help. Pray on every occasion, as the Spirit leads. For this reason keep alert and never give up; pray always for all God’s people.

A spiritual enemy? Is our battle unearthly? Did Paul want us to remove ourselves from the world? Did Jesus tell us to do such a thing? No. Jesus sends us into the world; He tells us to “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you” (The Great Commission). To the best of our ability, we are to bring the Kingdom of God to the world. As Paul observed, although we are not saved by our own works, we have works to do.

Ephesians 2:8-10 Good News Translation (GNT)

8-9 For it is by God’s grace that you have been saved through faith. It is not the result of your own efforts, but God’s gift, so that no one can boast about it. 10 God has made us what we are, and in our union with Christ Jesus he has created us for a life of good deeds, which he has already prepared for us to do.

Therefore, to do that which Christ Jesus prepared us to do, we each must strive for a society that permits us to freely share the message of the Gospel and to live life of good deeds. When those who choose to serve evil abuse the power of government and try enslave our fellow citizens, as Christians we must act to stop them. As Christians we must work to preserve a free society.

How then do we find peace? We will find it in the knowledge we have done what we could, but the victory belongs to God.

Psalm 60:12 Good News Translation (GNT)

With God on our side we will win;
he will defeat our enemies.

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This is the last post in a five-part series.

DO YOU REALLY WANT TO BE WORKER BEE?

At FINDING PEACE IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE 2012 ELECTION — PART 2, we are having a furious debate. The fact people are discussing instead of fighting important issues is a good thing, but I do find the attitude that some people have towards other people’s money and other people’s lives disappointing. We debate issues that were once settled.

What are the topics of our debate? Abortion and taxes. Since the issue of abortion has been rather thoroughly discussed in other forums, I will let that topic rest in the threads at FINDING PEACE IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE 2012 ELECTION — PART 2.

Do I care about ending of evil of abortion? Yes, but I cannot debate everything at the same time. Only Socialist Democrats can do that — sort of.

The Comforting Drone Of The Hive

In FINDING PEACE IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE 2012 ELECTION — PART 3, I quoted a passage from Democracy in America by Alexis De Tocqueville. De Tocqueville worried that in our drive for equality we would lose our liberty. What inspired that concern? I suspect what he knew about the French Revolution and the Reign of Terror that followed it gave rise to his concern.

If we are to have Liberty, then it is almost essential that we have Equality before the Law. However, some people insist upon a different kind of equality. They want economic equality, and in their ideal world, they want us all to think, look, and behave the same way. In their dream world, men behave like happily buzzing little bees.

Are bees happy? I have never been able to ask one. I am happy they exist. Nonetheless, I don’t want to be like a bee. I don’t want to be forced to think, look, and behave just like everyone else, but that is what government-forced economic equality requires.

Consider this excerpt from one Eric’s comments.

You have no absolute right to property.  Period.  The government can take your property as allowed for in the Constitution.  If you had a God-given right to it, they could not take it.  End of story.  Same for your supposed God-given right to life.  Your government can take your life anytime they so choose and again it is perfectly allowable under the Constitution.  Just ask any number of the boys who were drafted and died in the US, Europe, Korea, and Vietnam.  The government has denied MILLIONS their so-called “right” to life. (from here)

What was Eric defending? He defended President Barack Obama’s reelection and Obama’s programs to redistribute the wealth. Eric wants the “rich” to pay their “fair share” — whatever that might be.

Yet never fear, we have an expert on what the rich’s fair share might be. What expert? Paul Krugman, of course.

Consider the question of tax rates on the wealthy. The modern American right, and much of the alleged center, is obsessed with the notion that low tax rates at the top are essential to growth. Remember that Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, charged with producing a plan to curb deficits, nonetheless somehow ended up listing “lower tax rates” as a “guiding principle.”

Yet in the 1950s incomes in the top bracket faced a marginal tax rate of 91, that’s right, 91 percent, while taxes on corporate profits were twice as large, relative to national income, as in recent years. The best estimates suggest that circa 1960 the top 0.01 percent of Americans paid an effective federal tax rate of more than 70 percent, twice what they pay today. (from here)

Why would an economist suggest a stupid idea? Is Krugman an enemy of the rich? No. Then why would he advocate making the rich pay their fair share? Is it possible that Krugman is not an honest man? Is he only saying what he believes those in power want to hear?

What is making the rich pay their fair share all about? It is about a sin, that one mentioned in the Tenth Commandment.

You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor. (from here)

When a man appeals to one of our base desires — such as envy — he does not have our best interest in mind. He wants something for himself. Thus, when a demagogue campaigns to tax the “rich,” what he after is power, and any power he can use abuse the rich, he can use against anyone.

So What Does The Tenth Commandment Have To Do With Bees?

What does the Tenth Commandment have to do with bees? If envy — and jealous hatred — is what drives the quest for economic equality, then what becomes the state of men in a society that prides itself on its equality? What happens is what De Tocqueville warned us against. Because we fear the power of the majority’s envy, we force each other to become just another dull droning worker bee — to think, to look, and to act just like every other worker bee. After all, in a hive there is generally only one queen allowed at a time.

So When Is It Right To Make A Citizen Pay Taxes?

We need government to protect ourselves from each other. That is, we need government to protect our rights to life, liberty, and property protect. To pay for government to protect our rights, we tax each other.

Economic equality is not a right; it is just an excuse to covet what rightfully belongs to someone else.

Did Jesus Support Government-Run Charity?

No. Because our salvation is a personal matter, charity is a personal choice.

FINDING PEACE IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE 2012 ELECTION — PART 4

In Part 3 of this series, Understanding The Nature Of The Enemy: Red Tape, we considered how our government snarls us in red tape to keep us dependent, to keep us from becoming mature adults. Here we consider the damage we have done to ourselves.

The Best Defense Is A Good Offense

It is a truism. You want to defend yourself? Then build an offensive capability. Make your enemy aware of the fact that you can and will counterattack ferociously. Then he will leave you in peace. That is true with respect to both external and internal threats.

What happens when “good men” do not prepare for conflict? What happens when “good men” refuse to take a stand and do nothing? When evil men prowl about, seize, and ravage the weak, what happens when “good men” stand idly by, doing nothing?

What does the Bible say?

What does the Bible say happens when good men do nothing to stop evil? Consider the history of Israel. For the most part the history of the kings of Israel is a history of kings leading their people into sin. What follows is the story of a king who was one of the worst of the lot.

2 Chronicles 33:1-9 Good News Translation (GNT)

King Manasseh of Judah

33 Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king of Judah, and he ruled in Jerusalem for fifty-five years. 2 Following the disgusting practices of the nations whom the Lord had driven out of the land as his people advanced, Manasseh sinned against the Lord. 3 He rebuilt the pagan places of worship that his father Hezekiah had destroyed. He built altars for the worship of Baal, made images of the goddess Asherah, and worshiped the stars. 4 He built pagan altars in the Temple, the place that the Lord had said was where he should be worshiped forever. 5 In the two courtyards of the Temple he built altars for the worship of the stars. 6 He sacrificed his sons in Hinnom Valley as burnt offerings. He practiced divination and magic and consulted fortunetellers and mediums. He sinned greatly against the Lord and stirred up his anger. 7 He placed an image in the Temple, the place about which God had said to David and his son Solomon: “Here in Jerusalem, in this Temple, is the place that I have chosen out of all the territory of the twelve tribes of Israel as the place where I am to be worshiped. 8 And if the people of Israel will obey all my commands and keep the whole Law that my servant Moses gave them, then I will not allow them to be driven out of the land that I gave to their ancestors.” 9 Manasseh led the people of Judah to commit even greater sins than those committed by the nations whom the Lord had driven out of the land as his people advanced.

King Manasseh sacrificed his own sons as burnt offerings to an idol named Molech or Moloch: a god of the Ammonites. This god required the sacrifice of children.

Why did the people of Israel put up with such a terrible crime? Some were no doubt afraid. However, the people of Israel were not mere observers; they imitated Manasseh’s sins. Why?

Virtue is not something we are born with. If we are fortunate, our parents taught us virtue. That is why the Bible tells us to teach the commandments of God to our children, but some time prior to the rule of King Manasseh, the people of Israel had  stopped teaching their children the commandments of God. So their descendents forgot the meaning of virtue. How much did they forget? In the next chapter, 2 Chronicles 34, we learn that the Book of the Law, the Bible of that era, had become lost. Fortunately, when one of the few good kings, King Josiah, cared enough to restore the temple, Hilkiah, then the high priest, rediscovered a copy.

What happens to a people who no longer know what values they should honor? Here is what happened to Israel.

Isaiah 3:1-4 Good News Translation (GNT)

3 Now the Lord, the Almighty Lord, is about to take away from Jerusalem and Judah everything and everyone that the people depend on. He is going to take away their food and their water, 2 their heroes and their soldiers, their judges and their prophets, their fortunetellers and their statesmen, 3 their military and civilian leaders, their politicians and everyone who uses magic to control events. 4 The Lord will let the people be governed by immature boys.

Whereas a man does what is right because he knows what is right, a boy dithers — watching first to see what those around him do. Yet even a man finds sinning easier than doing good. So we must teach our children well. Jesus once put it this way.

Matthew 7:13-14 Good News Translation (GNT)

The Narrow Gate

13 “Go in through the narrow gate, because the gate to hell is wide and the road that leads to it is easy, and there are many who travel it. 14 But the gate to life is narrow and the way that leads to it is hard, and there are few people who find it.

Are Our Leaders Idly Standing By, Doing Nothing To Stop Evil?

We have in Washington D.C. Socialist Democrats taking us where no good Christian would want to go. And it is all out in the open.

  • We put up with huge budget deficits. The Democrat-run Senate won’t even pass a budget, but they will happily “stimulate” the economy with wasteful spending.
  • We allow our president to appoint “Czars” without congressional approval. He has even bypassed Congress to appoint regular officials.
  • We put up with leaders who advocate same-sex “marriage.” We have even let them authorize open homosexuality in the military.
  • We have let our leaders pass unconstitutional legislation such as Obamacare.
  • We have let Congress institutionalize lying. Consider baseline budgeting. If the Federal budget does not increase by a set percentage, they call the mere “lack of spending growth” a budget cut.
  • We have allowed our government to pay for abortions. Under Obamacare, our government can even force private insurers to cover and private organizations to pay for insurance policies that pay for abortions.
  • And on and on and on.

And what do Establishment Republicans do? They complain gently. Apparently, they do not want anyone to think they actually get angry about unconstitutional government; lying public officials; fraud, waste, and abuse; or killing unborn babies. And we voted for these “men.” So it seems our elected officials are not alone in their indifference.

Could that change? Perhaps. Our problems have reached the point where Socialist Democrat greed and ideological blindness is killing adult citizens. Consider The Benghazi Orders by , Keith DeHavelle.

I see much activity from pundits and questioners demanding to know what orders President Obama gave regarding the attack on the Benghazi consulate, which apparently he was tracking within a half-hour or so after it began.

In fact, Obama already detailed this list of orders, in Presidential Debate #2:

So as soon as we found out that the Benghazi consulate was being overrun, I was on the phone with my national security team, and I gave them three instructions:

  • Number one, beef up our security and — and — and procedures not just in Libya but every embassy and consulate in the region.
  • Number two, investigate exactly what happened, regardless of where the facts lead us, to make sure that folks are held accountable and it doesn’t happen again.
  • And number three, we are going to find out who did this, and we are going to hunt them down, because one of the things that I’ve said throughout my presidency is when folks mess with Americans, we go after them.

Note the present tense “was being overrun.” In other words, despite the fact that the attack was still under way, and we had resources in the area (including people one mile away), and he could see that the consulate staff was still under attack, his orders (based on his own statement here) amounted to “let them die, and we’ll figure something out for next time.” None of the three orders he says he gave had anything to do with saving the people in our consulate under attack. (continued here)

 goes on, however, to bring up another coverup that concerns him even more.

But I am actually more concerned about the now-forgotten Fast and Furious operation, during which the Obama administration coordinated among multiple agencies (DOJ, ATF, FBI) to put Americans at risk and increase killings in Mexico in order to provide political support for gun control — over the objections of many agents. When those agents complained, they were told that they should consider this activity should be “fun” and in fact “the most fun you have with ATF.” (from here)

Is the Fast and Furious operation forgotten? That’s up to us. Like boys who would be men, our leaders lead from behind. They see where we want to go, and then they hurry to get ahead of us.  Therefore, if we want our leaders to behave virtuously, we must become more mature — more virtuous — ourselves.

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This is the fourth post in a series.

BILL WHITTLE ON “A NEW BEGINNING”

H/T to quotes and notes and opinions. See Bill Whittle Weighs In on a New Beginning.

Immediately after the 2012 election Bill Whittle experienced a catharsis. He produced a one and a half hour video he titled “A New Beginning.” Instead of allowing himself to lapse into a state of despair, Whittle looked ahead.

Whittle calls himself a journalist. In doing so, he helps to give what has become a dreadful profession some hope of restoring its reputation. What he does in the video below is use his skill as a teacher. He provides a cogent explanation of the results of the 2012 election. That includes explaining, without blaming anyone except the winners, why Conservatives lost. Then he offers hope for the future by charting a course for us.

Because it offers a realistic, imaginative, and virtuous path on the journey ahead, the video is both worth watching and worthy of high praise.

Unlike Whittle, I experienced my post-election catharsis more slowly, and I waited until late into the evening of the next day to post anything. Unlike Whittle, I had no ready-made plan of my own for a post-election lost. Instead, I have studied what others have offered, and I have taken refuge in the Bible. Therefore, when I give my comments on Whittle’s new beginning, I have the advantage of being a critic. Hopefully, because I like Whittle’s proposal, Conservatives view my criticism as constructive.

What Whittle hopes to do is to spur a movement to build structures that parallel and compete with what are currently government monopolies. That is, we pay twice. We pay to support the government monopolies, and then we pay again to buy something that actually does the job in the private market.

Actually, what Whittle proposes has happened before. Even though the USSR was a totalitarian state, because the government-run farms performed so poorly, much of the USSR’s high quality agricultural produce came from small farm plots the state suffered to exist (see Agriculture in the Soviet Union). The survival of those small farms show that Whittle proposes is possible. However, unless you listen to his whole presentation, you will not appreciate why his idea is so important. You will not understand what Whittle thinks our conflict is about, whether we will survive as a virtuous people.

As Whittle suggests himself, what he proposes still needs refinement. So I have offered a few refinements. Here is a comment I left at Bill Whittle Weighs In on a New Beginning.

Like Bill Whittle. Got about halfway through. Sounds excellent! Only problem so far is that I think he underestimates one problem and over estimates another.

As our economy continues to decline, we will have less disposable income. If it is already difficult to get people to pay twice (for parallel private structures), hard times will make it even more difficult. Nonetheless, we don’t have a choice.

We also have no choice except to fight the government tooth and nail. When we start setting up parallel private structures, government regulators will step in order to destroy the competition. Then we will have to fight ferociously to protect those parallel structures. That could easily involve civil disobedience. At the same time, we will have to fight to starve certain parts of the government of money to render it less dangerous.

What we may experience something the early church experienced, persecution. When Whittle talks of ignoring the government, he strikes me guilty of hoping to play it safe. In a sense, he is ignoring his own advice. When we stand for virtue, those without virtue will hate us because we have what they do not have. Will their government officials benignly neglect us, people they see as dangerous competitors? Whittle’s own experiences suggest otherwise; it’s not a realistic expectation.

If we fight for virtue, then we must do what virtue requires. That is, first we render unto God what God’s. Then we render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s.

Anyway, those are early observations, and so perhaps unfair.  On the other hand, I like what I saw, and I will definitely watch the rest tomorrow evening. (from here)

My initial observations survived listening to the rest of Whittle’s interesting presentation. What else have I to add?

  •  Whittle’s definition of government is ambiguous. However, he only talks about replacing certain types of government institutions with parallel structures. Those are the Socialist institutions. When government is doing what it is suppose to do (and not engaging in Socialism), it exists to protect our rights. Protecting our rights requires judges, juries, policemen, and military forces. There is no practical way to build parallel structures to replace those government institutions. That is why Conservatives cannot simply abandon participation in the government. Therefore, we must take part in government. Otherwise, we will not able to protect the rights of our family, friends and neighbors.
  • In his video, Whittle speaks of what we deserve. Whittle intends no harm. Nonetheless, when someone tells me what I deserve, I find such presumption grating (See YOU DESERVE IT? WHY?). I know better! What I deserve is what God decides I deserve, and is that not true for everyone? Therefore, we must look to Him for guidance, and we must obey His commands.

With respect to the aftermath of the 2012 election, what does God require of us? In FINDING PEACE IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE 2012 ELECTION — PART 5, I will offer what I think the Bible says about this matter.