Monday, January 20, 2020

Good Read Worth Repeating: Windsors Blackmailed By Their Daughter-In-Law

Over the last one hundred years, the British Royal Family has generously provided the world with a parade of scandals more colorful and louder than the socks they wear with their kilts.  But the Meghan and Harry rupture is fundamentally different from any previous crisis to befall the British monarchy.  Prior to now, royal scandals have been cut from the same petticoats as any other public ignominies — i.e., the chin-wagging that follows uncovering some form of immoral conduct.  All the throngs of poorly hidden mistresses, caddish boyfriends, toe-sucking on yachts, assignations in the deer park while the horses wait patiently, even consorting with extremes of evildoing, such as found in the company of the late J. Epstein, arose from ordinary human weakness set against an extraordinary backdrop.  They have constituted straightforward disgraces that can unfold only among people with a shared religious heritage and moral code.

Those days are gone.

The roadside bomb in the royal family named Meghan Markle exploded not because of immoral conduct in the conventional sense.  Markle is the first duchess who hails from the American left-wing, post-Christian, anti-moral belief system that worships the journey of self-directed personal actualization.  Her justification after only a few months of marriage for urging hubby away from his family?  "It is not enough to survive, you have to thrive." 

Apparently, Harry's fulfilling his role as prince prevents her thriving.  For Meghan, thriving entails doing what you want, no matter if it hurts others or depreciates the generosity that has been heaped upon you.

Meghan Markle's psychology is affected by well managed narcissistic rage.  Narcissists seek power in relationships as a substitute for the terrifying experience of offering self-sacrificing love.  Markle has two sources of power over the royal family and the millions of people who love them.  She has the ordinary power of a disgruntled daughter-in-law to hurt her in-laws by controlling access to their brother, son, and grandchildren.  She also has the extraordinary power to blackmail the royal family with the indictment of racism!  It is widely reported that Markle has been acceding to the idea that she has been mistreated due to racism and that the royals fear being called racist in a "tell-all" interview.

The melodramatic flight of Meghan and Harry is being compared to the shattering abdication of King Edward VIII in 1937.  The two cases bear no resemblance.  King Edward VIII faced a moral dilemma that arose from a conflict with a religiously based code of behavior.  He wanted to marry his mistress.  That was not acceptable to the royal family and the Church of England, so he chose to abdicate, and that was the end of it.  Meghan Markle moves in a world where "organized" religion (the kind that comes with a moral code at no extra charge) is disrespected.  Markle may spend a Christianish day at a baptism, but she is not guided by the teachings of any church, save perhaps the church of Oprah, whose liturgy is "What works for me?"

Meghan has followed the career of all power-seeking, disruptive daughters-in-law.  She could have begun her campaign of alienating her husband from his family with vague and irremediable complaints about her dissatisfactions as soon as she joined the Firm.  "They don't respect you.  They don't appreciate me."  Wobbly Prince Harry is only too happy to be led away from his family.

Meghan and Harry possess a potent psychobiological weapon: the cry of racism. Harry drops hints of the dread allegation.  Meghan, just as she has no loyalty to her own family, discreetly ignores that ludicrous speculation against the family she chose to join.  Markle is the kind of self-promoter who frames her stratospheric privilege and luxuries into a stand upon conscience, proclaiming she will not live in the U.S. while the current president is in office.  Much noise, no sacrifice.

Meghan carries narcissistic rage against the father she perceives abandoned her and against her family of origin, whom she seems to despise.  Harry carries the abiding trauma of helplessness to protect his mother.  Meghan married an enormously rich global celebrity who is a vulnerable, emotionally unstable man, who, despite the tragic history, lived a highly protected life and whom she could control.  Harry married the opposite of his mother: an older, divorced, hardened TV actress — How brave she is,  overcoming all she has suffered! — who he unconsciously senses can protect herself, thereby saving him from re-experiencing traumatic helplessness.

Thus, her weaponization against his family works psychologically for them both.  But not as well for Harry.
Meghan is an actress, part of a business that virtually requires self-serving narcissism.  Harry was not expected to develop a career independent of his royal duties.  Furthermore, he appears to be a "serve or suffer" person like his mother.  He draws energy from directly serving others.  It is sad to see a prince shilling for his wife to Disney.  It is said that when two people marry they become as one.  Harry may not know it, but that one is Meghan.
It has been said that Harry is "stepping away" from royal duties because he has PTSD and is protecting his family from the tragedy that befell his mother.  If so, there would have been no need for the couple to behave badly.

Harry may discover that a fear-driven life is a thwarted existence.  They ambushed and distressed a frail 97-year-old man and his 93-year-old wife as a power tactic.  They could have quietly created another home in Canada.  They could have skipped the public self-congratulatory remarks about financial independence, as if hustling recently bestowed royal titles constitutes independence.  Meghan did not need to complain that nobody cared about her, or that the duchess gig wasn't working for her.  Above all, they did not have to promote the unjustified slander against queen and country that Meghan has been mistreated due to racism.

Meghan Markle enjoys absolute melanin immunity from criticism.  Any challenge, however gentle, is racist!  The duchess of York was publicly pulverized for her appearance for years on end, but she's white so it was OK.  A critique of Meghan's nail polish is racism!

Racism! is a justification for the elite globalist kleptocracy to loot their nation state, because that is where the money is.  The E.U. didn't fix up Frogmore "Cottage" for Meghan and Harry; the British people did.  Such super-rich transnational lifestylers cling to a patina of virtue in their lack of loyalty to homeland, because the British, like all white people, are racist!

This hoax, the rebuff of royal duties, and alienation from his royal family are being baked into Archie's life narrative.  Concerned about carbon footprints, Meghan announced that Archie will be an only child.  (Enforcing this one-child-to-jet conviction means that she will have to buy another jet if she becomes pregnant again.)  It seems that everything is being done to diminish Archie's one-in-a-billion birthright.  But  he will not be able to escape it for an hour of his life once he is old enough to know who he is
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So let's plan a glorious adolescent rebellion for Archie.  He announces to Mom and Dad, "You people are not working for me.  I am not thriving."  He finally goes home to stay.  The king restores Archie's titles and then some.  He "Etons up," plays polo, and gets the funny socks to wear with his kilt.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Sunday, The Remedy for Pride

Devotional by John Piper
Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit” — yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. (James 4:13–16)
James is talking about pride and arrogance and how they show up in subtle ways. “You boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.”

When you take three categories of temptation to self-reliance — wisdom, power, and riches — they form a powerful inducement toward the ultimate form of pride; namely, atheism. The safest way for us to stay supreme in our own estimation is to deny anything above us.

This is why the proud preoccupy themselves with looking down on others. C.S. Lewis said, “A proud man is always looking down on things and people: and, of course, as long as you are looking down, you cannot see something that is above you” (Mere Christianity).

But to preserve pride, it may be simpler to just proclaim that there is nothing above to look at. “In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him; all his thoughts are, ‘There is no God’” (Psalm 10:4). Ultimately, the proud must persuade themselves that there is no God. One reason for this is that God’s reality is overwhelmingly intrusive in all the details of life. Pride cannot tolerate the intimate involvement of God in running the universe, let alone the detailed, ordinary affairs of life.

Pride does not like the sovereignty of God. Therefore, pride does not like the existence of God, because God is sovereign. It might express this by saying, “There is no God.” Or it might express it by saying, “I am driving to Atlanta for Christmas.” James says, “Don’t be so sure.” Instead, you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live, and we will get to Atlanta for Christmas.”

James’s point is that God rules over whether you get to Atlanta, and whether you live to the end of this devotional. This is extremely offensive to the self-sufficiency of pride — not even to have control over whether you get to the end of the devotional without having a stroke! The way to battle this arrogance is to yield to the sovereignty of God in all the details of life, and rest in his infallible promises to show himself mighty on our behalf (2 Chronicles 16:9), to pursue us with goodness and mercy every day (Psalm 23:6), to work for those who wait for him (Isaiah 64:4), and to equip us with all we need to live for his glory (Hebrews 13:21).

 In other words, the remedy for pride is unwavering faith in God’s sovereign future grace.

Amen and amen.

Monday, January 13, 2020

The Bible Never Goes Out of Style or Veers from Truth

SINCE THE BRITISH ROYAL FAMILY HAS BEEN IN THE NEWS WITH ITS LATEST DRAMATIC CRISIS and 24-hour news coverage,  a poignant Scripture verse comes to mind which is true for them, and for all of us.

Numbers 14:18

The Lord is long suffering and of abundant mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgressions; but he by no means clears the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation.

Pastor John Piper explains how God is accomplishing this truth.

Monday, January 6, 2020

A Favorite Psalm For the New Year

THE EPISCOPAL CHURCH'S FRUITS OF HERESY

PSALM 1

Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

THE NOURISHING WORD (Commentary and prayer below by Tim Keller)

PSALM 1 is the gateway to the rest of the psalms.  The 'law' is all scripture, to 'meditate' on is to think out its implications for all life, and to 'delight' in it means not merely to comply, but to love what God commands.  Christian have their attitude towards God changed from one to duty to free loving self-giving because of what Jesus did for us on the cross.  So to know how to meditate on and delight in the Bible is the secret to a relationship with God and to life itself. Views contrary to God's Word are no anchor in time of need. God's Word gives us the resilience of a tree with a source of living water that will never dry up.

Prayer:  Lord of the Word, don't let me be seduced by the world---either naively going with the crowd or becoming a hardened cynic.  Help me meditate on your Word to the point of delight.  Give me stability and contentment regardless of the circumstances.  How I need that!  Amen

Friday, January 3, 2020

Matt Drudge, Drama Queen of Online News

I've followed Drudge for over a decade and a half.  But in the last year,  I find him a giant bore who wants to hook me.  Yawn. 

World War 3?  The beginning of the end? Oh please.  It's all for hits and popularity.

Simply getting to be a predictable bore.  He may not even still be in the building,   but whatever,  Drudge is going downhill for me.

Stuart Schneiderman Puts the Iranian Crisis Into Historical Perspective and More


STARTING OUT WITH A WALK DOWN MEMORY LANE,  SS tells it like it's been, it now is and how it's going to be with Trump, the new sheriff in town.

 Schneiderman writes

In case you hadn’t noticed, there’s a new sheriff in town. Gone are the days when American presidents would cower under their desks. Gone are the days when American presidents would react to attacks against our soldiers and citizens with empty threats. Gone are the days when attacks on American embassies and consulates would produce more rhetoric and less action.

When Hezbollah attacked a marine barracks in Beirut, killing nearly 300 troops, Ronald Reagan pulled our troops out of Lebanon. He threatened harsh reprisals and did nothing.
When the Iranian regime invaded the American embassy in Tehran and took our citizens hostage, Jimmy Carter sent a helicopter to rescue them, only to see it crash and burn in the Iranian desert.
When American pilots caught sight of a convoy of Taliban officials escaping the American invasion in the early days of the Afghanistan War, American commanders consulted with lawyers-- who told them not to attack the convoy, because someone might get hurt. 
And, when terrorists attacked the American ambassador in Benghazi, Libya the Obama administration refused to send help, but denounced and jailed a man who had made a video.
When Iranians captured and humiliated American sailors in the Persian Gulf, Secretary of State John Kerry eventually thanked them for releasing the sailors unharmed.
As for the last, the Obama policy in the Middle East involved cozying up with Iran and betraying Sunni Arabs and Israel. Now, with President Trump’s swift and decisive retaliation for the Iran-instigated attack on the American embassy in Baghdad, Democratic chickenshits are cowering in the corner, fearful of the righteous might of Iran.
If you want to know why the nation is divided against itself, look at the Democratic presidential candidates, trembling in fear, having long since abandoned even the pretense of patriotism. Nothing can stop their will to surrender to terrorism.
Qasem Soleimani had the blood of hundreds, if not thousands of Americans on his hands. The Democrats are horrified that President Trump just reduced him to ashes. I probably don't need to mention it, but if Obama had done exactly the same thing, these same Democrats would have praised him as the most courageous military leader since Alexander the Great.
Eric Nagourney got it right in the New York Times:
In July 2018, after President Trump warned Iran’s president not to threaten the United States, a rejoinder came not from the Iranian leader but from a military figure perhaps even more powerful.
“It is beneath the dignity of our president to respond to you,” Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani declared in a speech in western Iran. “I, as a soldier, respond to you.”
On Friday, General Suleimani was reported killed in an airstrike in Baghdad.
As for who he was, this man whose death strikes such fear in the hearts of cowardly Democrats, the Daily Mail summarizes:
Revolutionary Guards commander Qassem Soleimani, who was killed Friday in a US strike, was one of Iran's most prominent figures and a deadly adversary to America and its allies.
As the head of the Quds - or Jersualem - Force of Iran’s paramilitary Revolutionary Guard, Soleimani was officially charged with protecting the Islamic revolution, and in practice was used to enforce the regime's will across the Middle East. 
Commonly known as the second most powerful man in Iran, wielding more influence than the president, he was seen by many as a future leader.
His CV included helping Shia militias to kill hundreds of American troops during the US invasion of Iraq,  backing Assad as he slaughtered civilians by the thousands during the Syrian civil war, and most recently overseeing the slaughter of hundreds of anti-Iran protesters in Iraq. 

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Was A Legal Fiction: In A Major Blow To Sexual Dilly Dallying/ Hocus Pocus, James Shupe Goes Back to Being the Man He Was Meant to Be In the First Place


READ THE WHOLE REMARKABLE PIECE BY TYLER O'NEIL ON JAMES SHUPE'S COURAGEOUS RETURN TO HIMSELF AND  SEXUAL REALITY.  A WHOLE LOT OF SUFFERING WENT INTO HIS SAGA

First Trans Person to Obtain Legal 'Non-Binary' Sex Status Changes Back to Birth Sex in Blow to LGBT Movement


ABOVE: James Shupe in front of the Gainesville, Fla. Department of Veterans Affairs.

THIS MONTH,  the first person to obtain a legal "non-binary" sex designation has successfully petitioned the court originally responsible for his "non-binary" status to order that the sex on his birth certificate be restored to "male." In documents exclusively provided to PJ Media, James Shupe's petition described his "non-binary" designation as a "psychologically harmful legal fiction." He told PJ Media he hopes this decision will prevent a woman currently seeking "non-binary" recognition from following the same lies.

"The charade of not being male, the legal fiction, it's over," James Shupe told PJ Media on Tuesday. "The lies behind my fictitious sex changes, something I shamefully participated in, first to female, and then to non-binary, have been forever exposed. A truthful accounting of events has replaced the deceit that allowed me to become America's first legally non-binary person."

"The legal record has now been corrected and LGBT advocates are no longer able to use my historic non-binary court order to advance their toxic agenda," he added. "I am and have always been male. That is my biological truth, the only thing capable of grounding me to reality."

While he became a hero for the transgender movement, Shupe now aims to dispel the lies of gender identity and reverse the harm caused by the precedent of his "non-binary" legal designation.

He referenced the case of Jones David Hollister, a woman who identifies as non-binary and is currently fighting to change her legal designation to non-binary. Hollister's brief to the Oregon Court of Appeals cites Shupe's case.

"I hope that Hollister and all the others are denied the right to change their sex to non-binary because it's fraud and legal fiction based on pseudoscience," Shupe said. "I was indoctrinated to believe that I had this thing called a gender identity and that suppressing it was causing my mental health problems. It was all a lie."
He said he had embraced the lie of transgender identity as a crutch while struggling with deep psychological issues that would have been better addressed by therapy.

"I ended up in the psych ward three times because of hormones. I had blood clots in my eyes because my estrogen levels were 2,585 instead of 200, low bone density, problems controlling my bladder, and emotional instability," Shupe said. "Blood tests indicated I was dropping into kidney disease territory (EFGR below 60) for about 18 months, I had chronic dermatology issues and skin reactions to estrogen patches, I passed out on the kitchen floor from Spironolactone."

High-strength marijuana prescribed to him as he was passing through Colorado gave him hallucinations.
"The gender transitions were supposed to fix my mental health problems, but I kept getting worse instead. The high-powered marijuana made me psychotic. I started hearing booming noises and having visions of being some Indian woman," he recalled. "I started believing I was some kind of chosen one who was picked to restore the third gender to North America, that's what I thought the visions were telling me."

Shupe went public about his detransition in an interview with PJ Media's Bruce Bawer earlier this year after he asked for his official Florida documents to restore his legal sex to male.

Born in 1963 in Washington, D.C., Shupe spent eighteen years (1982-2000) in the U.S. Army. He has been married to his wife, Sandy, for three decades, and had a daughter with her. In 2013 he began identifying as a transgender woman, claiming that he had struggled for years and that he had been harassed in the military because he was perceived as gay. He lived in Pittsburgh for a year, took experimental hormones, and changed his name — but he stopped short of a surgical sex change. In November 2014, he moved to Portland, Oregon, which he found more hospitable for a transgender woman. He lived there until September 2017
.
The New York Times published a profile on him in 2015, but only a year later, he rejected his female identity for a new one. In June 2016, Multnomah County Judge Amy Holmes Hehn issued a court order to change his sex from female to non-binary.

He wanted his Washington, D.C., birth certificate to reflect this gender identity, and that required a court order. With the stroke of a pen, Shupe became the first person in the U.S. to be legally recognized as "non-binary." The sex on his birth certificate was changed to "X," meaning indeterminate. This made him a hero in the LGBT community.

USA Today reported that Shupe's "three years of living like a woman were nearly as painful as those spent as a man." Presenting himself as a transgender woman, he had felt pressured "to maintain a hyper-feminine appearance 24-7," or he would find himself "getting called sir."

Shupe began to struggle with the concept of gender identity as something other than biological sex. Explaining the non-binary identity, he told Oregon Live, "I was assigned male at birth due to biology. I'm stuck with that for life. My gender identity is definitely feminine. My gender identity has never been male, but I feel like I have to own up to my male biology. Being non-binary allows me to do that. I'm a mixture of both. I consider myself as a third sex."
Yet he began to question the damage the transgender movement has caused in society. In July 2017, he worried about "the future of transgender children," arguing that they need "societal change," not "surgical procedures," "cross-sex hormones," or sterilization. He supported a bathroom-privacy ballot initiative, and Lambda Legal dropped him as a client.

In just a manner of months, Shupe went from supporting transgender military service to defending Trump's requirement that servicemembers live according to their biological sex.

Suddenly, the media was no longer interested in his opinions. "Not a single Oregon media outlet has been willing to talk to me, let alone report that I've reclaimed my birth sex and have denounced gender ideology," he told PJ Media on Monday. "They dropped me after I supported Trump's ban on gender dysphoria in the military. That got me canceled.

This year, he took the final step. "In January 2019, I walked into the DMV and confronted a clerk with my U.S. passport, telling her 'look, I'm a male, I'm reclaiming my male birth sex, and I want a driver's license with 'male' instead of 'female,'' " he recalled.

This change would only work in Florida, where Shupe still has an ongoing case to change his name back to "James Clifford Shupe," rather than "Jamie Shupe." After this change, Lambda Legal dropped all mentions of Shupe from their briefs in the case Zzyym v. Pompeo, which involves an intersex client who was denied a U.S. passport.

In the spring of 2019, he asked the Social Security Administration to restore his male birth sex. "Social Security refused to accept a doctor's letter stating I was biologically male. They forced me to use their template, claiming I had undergone a gender transition to male," he recalled.
While Florida granted his request to return to "male" on his driver's license, this change "wouldn't override the Oregon court order that made my sex non-binary and was getting used by the LGBT advocates to advance other cases, so we had to go back to Oregon."

On December 11, Shupe petitioned the Multnomah County Court for the order to restore his male designation.

"The purpose of my request is to restore the original male sex designation that I was correctly observed to be at birth and to restore the precious name given to me at birth by my parents. I was not born in Oregon, and I have a Florida case pending to restore my name to JAMES CLIFFORD SHUPE," he wrote in the petition. "I am no longer pursuing surgical, hormonal or other treatment to affirm a non-binary identity, and I wish to reclaim my male birth sex."
"Despite six years of hormonal treatments, my sex was immutable, and I remained the same biological male I was at the time of my birth. In hindsight, my sex change to non-binary was a psychologically harmful legal fiction, and I desire to reclaim my male birth sex," he added. "Despite my documented history of severe mental illness, my birth certificate has been changed twice previously. ... Since receiving the 2016 non-binary court judgment in this case, I have been correctly diagnosed with a 'sexual paraphilia' by the Department of Veterans Affairs, the root cause of previous confusion about my sexual identity."

Even getting that diagnosis proved to be a battle for Shupe.

"I then began confronting the VA about rubber-stamping me with gender dysphoria when in fact I had sexual paraphilias, a transvestic disorder with autogynephilia and masochism. The psychologist at the VA who had diagnosed me with gender dysphoria then dumped me as a patient when I asked for the diagnosis to be changed. The VA finally gave me the paraphilia diagnosis in April 2019, the endocrinologist did it," he recalled. "The VA then outsourced me to the civilian sector to a therapist unqualified to treat me, the only one willing to take me as a patient."

VA doctors were all too happy to diagnose gender dysphoria, but they mostly refused to consider sexual paraphilias, which Ph.D. psychologist Ray Blanchard says is the real cause.

Shupe told PJ Media he later realized the judge who granted his "non-binary" court order had harmed him.
"The Oregon judge physically and mentally harmed me by silently rubber-stamping the non-binary court order to advance a transgender agenda, to which she has ties," he said. Before the proceeding, Shupe’s lawyer told him not to worry because the judge herself had a transgender kid.

Although Shupe brought doctors' letters testifying to his identity, the judge did not even ask to look at them.

 "She was negligent in her duties as a judge to not explore my mental health and motivations as to why I was seeking the sex change. If she had of done so, she would have uncovered my severe mental health issues, the sexual paraphilias, and the fact that the doctors' letters were written after a discussion with the two of them that my sex change to female was a failure and becoming non-binary was bailing all of us out," he recalled.
The judge even got scared afterward, according to Shupe.

He also claimed the doctors who approved his change from female to non-binary abused him. "Why didn't they force me to go to mental health for an evaluation about why I felt the sex change was a failure instead of giving me yet another one?" he asked. One doctor even gave him psychotropic drugs. "I stayed doped up to cope with my life as a fake woman."

It has taken tremendous courage for Shupe to come forward with his story. His non-binary status made him a hero in the LGBT community, and he could have remained quiet about his detransition.

"It's an incredibly painful thing to walk back a landmark court decision that made you internationally famous and admit the whole thing was based on lies and deceit," he told PJ Media. Yet he felt compelled to speak out and warn against these destructive lies.

Follow Tyler O'Neil, the author of this article, on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.

Tennessee's New Gun Carry Permits Show 20-20 Vision For 2nd Amendment Freedoms Here

WE NEED THESE NEW, EASIER TO OBTAIN CARRY PERMITS NOW MORE THAN EVER!  The latest church shooting in Texas continues to prove the importance of these permit.   I have the old, harder to get kind that required I go to classes two Saturdays in a row with target practice and instructors.  That was fine, but next time I'll explore renewing it with this new law.

Congratulations, Tennessee.  We just got safer, saner, like Texas.

To wit:

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — TENNESSEE IS NOW OFFERING,  as of January 1, 2020 a new concealed carry-only handgun permit that doesn't require an applicant to demonstrate the ability to fire a weapon. The law takes effect Jan. 1.

Under the new handgun law, a permit to carry a concealed handgun could be obtained after online training of at least 90 minutes. The current handgun carry permits would still remain an option
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Those permits require eight hours of training with live firing required, which critics say is time-consuming and burdensome. The National Rifle Association's legislative arm backed the new measure.

Friday, December 27, 2019

Diana West's Must Read On Christianity and Communism and the Historical Roots of Our Current Great Political Divide

Diana West, Commentary @ The Epoch Times

CHRISTIANITY TODAY, THE MAGAZINE FOUNDED BY BILLY GRAHAM IN 1956, has called, in this week before Christmas, for President Donald Trump’s removal from office.

Franklin Graham quickly released a statement on Twitter in reply: “I hadn’t shared who my father @BillyGraham voted for in 2016, but because of @CYMagazine’s article, I felt it necessary to share now. My father knew @realDonaldTrump, believed in him & voted for him. He believed Donald J. Trump was the man for this hour in history for our nation.”
Amen.

It is a beautiful statement; however, I never for a moment doubted that Billy Graham voted for President Trump. Graham’s vote for Trump was a given for important reasons and deep beliefs, which, independent of any election, are explored in “The Red Thread: A Search for Ideological Drivers Inside the Anti-Trump Conspiracy.”

The relevant chapter, reprinted below minus endnotes, follows an extensive analysis of James Comey’s lifelong homage to Marxist theologian Reinhold Niebuhr as the significant influence on his thinking, starting in his college days, when Comey describes himself as having been a communist. Comey moved to “whatever I am now,” as he put it to New York Magazine in 2003, but his affinity for Niebuhr remains unchanged to this day.

Chapter 16. The Longest War

It was the 1980s, and Jerry Falwell and his Moral Majority organization were the perfect foils for James Comey to use in his senior honors thesis to extol the socialist teachings of his hero, Niebuhr (1892-1971). In a previous generation, Comey might have juxtaposed the evangelizing Billy Graham (1918-2018) with Niebuhr’s Bible-as-myth approach to “social action.” Earlier still, Comey might have compared the anti-New Deal, anti-Communist Norman Vincent Peale (1898-1993) with the socialist and “anti-anti-Communist” Niebuhr.

It should become clear that we are looking at a theological and political divide in American Protestantism that is an old story. What is especially relevant to the “red thread” is that so, too, is Donald Trump’s place in it.

Norman Vincent Peale and Billy Graham both were Trump family favorites. Donald Trump has spoken fondly of taking in Graham sermons with his revered father, Fred, who, Donald remembers, attended “the crusades” at Yankee Stadium. On the 2016 campaign trail at Liberty University, founded by Jerry Falwell in 1971, Donald Trump recalled watching Jerry Falwell’s TV show, The Old-Time Gospel Hour. When Billy Graham died in 2018, Donald Trump attended his funeral; five living former presidents did not.

According to the New York Times, it was Peale’s church, Marble Collegiate, that the Trump family “gravitated to” in the 1960s. Peale and Donald would develop a warm friendship. Peale officiated at Donald and Ivana’s wedding (1977) and also at the wedding of Donald’s sister Maryanne. In 1988, Donald hosted Peale’s 90th birthday party at the Waldorf-Astoria. As the Washington Post put it, “The Trump and Peale clans have [a] history.”

It’s easy to imagine heavy Niebuhrian eye-rolling over this “history,” and not a little choking on the Chardonnay and canapés. Back in the day, things could even get confrontational, as in 1955, when Niebuhr and several fellow “progressives”-of-the-cloth launched a vicious attack in a national magazine on Peale and Graham both. Their attack drew a public rebuke from President Eisenhower’s pastor, the Rev. Edward L.R. Elson, who accused these pastoral critics “of ‘sneering’ and shallow thinking,” according to a news report.

Their differences were not theological only. In August 1948, Niebuhr was counseling Christians that the churches could not take a “negative attitude” toward communism. “Churches everywhere,” Niebuhr stated, “had to recognize our involvement in injustices and insecurities Communism seeks or promises to cure.” In January 1951, Peale was carrying a very different message to the faithful: “The future belongs to Christ not Communism.” These were Cold War battle cries across the pro-Communist/anti-Communist divide.


Trump’s connection to Peale, then, not only informs the Comey-Niebuhr/Trump-Peale divide, but also throws into relief the larger national cleavage between Global Elites and the America First “Deplorables.” This is another old war in America—the “internationalists” vs. the nationstaters; the “progressives” vs. the patriots; the socialistic vs. the nationalistic. Now that Donald Trump is president, the first to reach this highest office from the ranks of “America First,” this clash may never have been so highly charged.

For much of the 20th century, Norman Vincent Peale was the nationally renowned pastor of Marble Collegiate in Manhattan. In addition to uplifting, spellbinding sermons, Peale was known for being outspoken in his opposition to all varieties of collectivism, from the socialism of Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, which he sermonized against as a dire threat to liberty, to Soviet communism.

“No one has more contempt for communism than I do,” he wrote in his 1952 mega-seller, The Power of Positive Thinking. In the late 1930s, he fought against the explosion of executive powers that undergirded Roosevelt’s “New Deal,” serving as secretary of a non-partisan group called the National Committee to Uphold Constitutional Government. This committee came together under newspaper editor Frank E. Gannett to oppose Roosevelt’s infamous Supreme Court packing plan and other executive branch encroachments that were destroying the Constitution’s “checks and balances.” The same concerns drove opposition to FDR’s decision to run for an unprecedented third term in 1940, and the president’s landmark foreign aid proposal known as Lend Lease, which arrived as a bill in Congress at the beginning of 1941, eleven months before Pearl Harbor.

In most histories, Lend Lease is a barely noticed stepping-stone to America’s entry into World War II; at the time, however, the debate was loud and acrimonious. The vast war-making powers the bill gave the president galvanized its opponents in a quickly growing, grass-roots movement known as America First. Caricatured today, this anti-interventionist organization drew in a wide swath of Americans from both political parties, from all walks of life, from Frank Lloyd Wright to Gerald Ford to Kingman Brewster to Norman Thomas to Charles Lindbergh. Their main agenda was (1) steer clear of another European war and thereby save young American lives, (2) avoid building up one totalitarian monster (Stalin) to replace another (Hitler), and (3) ensure the government’s three branches survived the process “co-equal.” They failed on all counts.

Peale, as secretary of the National Committee to Uphold Constitutional Government, strongly opposed Lend Lease on well-defined constitutional grounds. Lend Lease expanded presidential powers to a point where the chief executive could send military support of any kind to any country he deemed “vital to the defense of the United States.” There were no limits. No president had ever even sought such powers. But there was even more to Lend Lease than that—and here is where the red thread pokes up and down like a hem-stitch through the rest of the “American century.”

Lend Lease was not just anti-Constitutional; it was revolutionary. This will not surprise anyone who learns that the legislation’s godfathers were Armand Hammer, Harry Hopkins, and Harry Dexter White—all three men pro-Soviet to the core, all three men variously believed to be Soviet agents, although such shocking revelations came later. We may now regard Lend Lease as the founding document of the “new world order” that arose in the aftermath of World War II, its heaviest cornerstones laid by covert Soviet agents Alger Hiss at the United Nations and Harry Dexter White at the International Monetary Fund.

The sea change came in making “any country’s defense vital” to our own. Secretary of State Edward Stettinius wrote:
To favor limited aid to the allies as an expedient device for saving friendly nations from conquest was one thing. To declare that the defense of those nations was “vital” to our own national security was quite another. If we adopted the bill with those words, we would, in effect, declare the interdependence of the American people with the other freedom-loving nations of the world … [emphasis added].
We did indeed adopt the Lend-Lease bill with those words (notwithstanding that a major recipient of Lend Lease was the Soviet Union—definitely not a “freedom-loving nation”). This makes March 11, 1941, the day the Lend-Lease bill passed, America’s Interdependence Day.
Norman Vincent Peale correctly warned that Lend Lease would give the president “the power to commit the American people to any war anywhere, and without action by Congress.” Lend Lease itself may have expired but its powers have lived on in an unconstrained Executive. Such “interdependence” is the basis of the “liberal postwar order,” and the “neoconservative” mission we have known in our time as “nation-building.”

What was once controversial draws little comment today. When a President of the United States declares the destinies of foreign peoples to be “vital” to that of the United States, whether in Saudi Arabia (FDR), Iraq (Bush), or Afghanistan (Obama), he is merely carrying out the “internationalism,” or “globalism” that has been the primary purpose of U.S. foreign policy since FDR.


READ THE  REST OF THIS BRILLIANT PIECE @ The Epoch Times and see again how deep and prolonged our current divide really is and how perfectly Trump fits in.

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Merry Christmas! The Good News In One Christmas Song With Kenny and Wynonna


 IT DOESN'T GET ANY BETTER THAN THIS. Let him who has ears, hear.

Monday, December 23, 2019

Prime Minister Boris Johnson Salutes the Jews of Britain and Beyond


WHAT A WONDERFUL SALUTE. Yes, yes, I know it's for Hannaukah. But really, it's so much more.

Stuart Scheidermann

Sunday, December 22, 2019

Advent 3: That We May Believe

DON SURBER UPDATE:  TRUTH ABOUT THE CHRISTIANITY TODAY ANTI TRUMP EDITORIAL

A WONDERFUL MESSAGE OF HOPE AMID ALL THE DISTRACTIONS AND FAKE CRAZINESS
Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. (John 20:30–31)
I feel so strongly that among those of us who have grown up in church and who can recite the great doctrines of our faith in our sleep, and yet who can yawn through the Apostles’ Creed — that among us something must be done to help us once more feel the awe, the fear, the astonishment, the wonder of the Son of God, begotten by the Father from all eternity, reflecting all the glory of God, being the very image of his person, through whom all things were created, upholding the universe by the word of his power
.
You can read every fairy tale that was ever written, every mystery thriller, every ghost story, and you will never find anything so shocking, so strange, so weird and spellbinding as the story of the incarnation of the Son of God.

How dead we are! How callous and unfeeling to your glory and your story, O God! How often have I had to repent and say, “God, I am sorry that the stories men have made up stir my emotions, my awe and wonder and admiration and joy, more than your own true story.”

Perhaps the galactic movie thrillers of our day can do at least this good for us: they can humble us and bring us to repentance, by showing us that we really are capable of some of the wonder and awe and amazement that we so seldom feel when we contemplate the eternal God and the cosmic glory of Christ and a real living contact between them and us in Jesus of Nazareth.

When Jesus said, “For this purpose I have come into the world” (John 18:37), he said something as crazy and weird and strange and eerie as any statement in science fiction that you have ever read.

Oh, how I pray for a breaking forth of the Spirit of God upon me and upon you; for the Holy Spirit to break into my experience in a frightening way, to wake me up to the unimaginable reality of God.

One of these days lightning is going to fill the sky from the rising of the sun to its setting, and there is going to appear in the clouds the Son of Man with his mighty angels in flaming fire. And we will see him clearly. And whether from terror or sheer excitement, we will tremble and we will wonder how we ever lived so long with such a domesticated, harmless Christ.

These things are written — the whole Bible is written — that we might believe — that we might be stunned and awakened to the wonder — that Jesus Christ is the Son of God who came into the world.




Thursday, December 19, 2019

Men Free Locked Bucks With Chainsaw

VIA VANDERLEUN, this video made my day. Actually, in the course of rutting season, this happens more than I realized. My loggers said last year said they found two bucks locked, dead locked, in a pond on their  farm.

   

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Advent's Greatest Meditation: The Magnificat of Mary

My soul magnifies the Lord
And my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
Because He has regarded the lowliness of His handmaid;
For behold, henceforth all generations shall call me blessed;

For He who is mighty has done great things for me,
and holy is His name;
And His mercy is from generation to generation
on those who fear Him.
He has shown might with His arm,
He has scattered the proud in the conceit of their heart.
He has put down the mighty from their thrones,
and has exalted the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich He has sent away empty.
He has given help to Israel, his servant, mindful of His mercy
Even as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his posterity forever.


---Luke 1:46-55

The Magnificat is wonderful material for meditation on the Visitation,  when the angel Gabriel informs Mary that she is to be the Mother of God, and tells her of her relative Elizabeth’s pregnancy with John the Baptist.

After Mary gives her famous consent to becoming the Mother of God, -- “Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done to me according to thy word” (Luke 1:38) -- she goes “with haste” (1:39) to help Elizabeth, who is delighted to see her. Mary then expresses her joy in the Magnificat.

Mary's joy can be our joy at Advent as we contemplate the birth of a promised and long-awaited Savior for mankind.


Thursday, December 12, 2019

Let Britain Be Britain---Boris Finally Did It!

Congratulations, Boris! Absolutely stunning victory!

Monday, December 9, 2019

Second Week Advent--How Does Humility Lead in Conflict, Why Godly Conviction Is Not Arrogance

THIS HALF HOUR TALK BY PASTOR JOHN PIPER is well worth listening to. Maybe several times. It's the reality of the Gospel for those who follow Jesus Christ and are not afraid of joining in the sufferings and challenges of the Savior. Humility serves OBJECTIVE, UNSHAKABLE reality. May we all submit to it humbly and proclaim it. Humility is truly a gift and receives everything as a gift as a fruit of the Holy Spirit and the Gospel.

Monday, December 2, 2019

First Sunday Advent---Mary's Magnificent God

LISTEN
“My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant. For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name. And his mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts; he has brought down the mighty from their thrones and exalted those of humble estate; he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his offspring forever.” (Luke 1:46–55)
Mary sees clearly a most remarkable thing about God: He is about to change the course of all human history; the most important three decades in all of time are about to begin.

And where is God? Occupying himself with two obscure, humble women — one old and barren (Elizabeth), one young and a virgin (Mary). And Mary is so moved by this vision of God, the lover of the lowly, that she breaks out in song — a song that has come to be known as “The Magnificat.”

Mary and Elizabeth are wonderful heroines in Luke’s account. He loves the faith of these women. The thing that impresses him most, it appears, and the thing he wants to impress on Theophilus, his noble reader of his Gospel, is the lowliness and cheerful humility of Elizabeth and Mary as they submit to their magnificent God.
Elizabeth says (Luke 1:43), “And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” And Mary says (Luke 1:48), “He has looked on the humble estate of his servant.”

The only people whose soul can truly magnify the Lord are people like Elizabeth and Mary — people who acknowledge their lowly estate and are overwhelmed by the condescension of the magnificent God


Thursday, November 28, 2019

Pastor John Piper: The Root of Ingratitude, and conversely, Glorifying God By Giving Thanks

RELATED:  AMERICA'S GRATITUDE DEFICIT
THOUGHTS AND LESSONS ON THE FIRST THANKSGIVING: The Team At Speakeasy Ideas


THERE ARE MANY REASONS FOR INGRATITUDE.  However,  Pastor Piper nails the underlying culprit:  our illusions of self-sufficiency,  self-righteousness, which lead to hard and darkened hearts.  Listen and learn.

Although they knew God, they did not glorify him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. (Romans 1:21)

THEN, a meditation on Glorifying God By Giving Thanks.
It is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God. (2 Corinthians 4:15)
Gratitude to God is a joyful emotion. We have a sense of joyful indebtedness for his grace. So in a sense in the very emotion of gratitude, we are still the beneficiaries. But by its very nature, gratitude glorifies the giver. When we feel thankful, we acknowledge our need and God’s beneficence, God’s fullness, the riches of his glory.

Just like I humble myself and exalt the server in the restaurant when I say, “Thank you,” so I humble myself and exalt God when I feel gratitude to him. The difference, of course, is that I really am infinitely in debt to God for his grace, and everything he does for me is free and undeserved.

But the point is that gratitude glorifies the giver. It glorifies God. And this is Paul’s final goal in all his labors. Yes, his labors are for the sake of the church — the good of the church. But the church is not the highest goal. Listen again: “It is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.” All for your sake — for the glory of God!

The wonderful thing about the gospel is that the response it requires from us for God’s glory is also the response that is most natural and joyful; namely, thankfulness for grace. God’s all-supplying glory in giving and our humble gladness in receiving are not in competition. Joyful thankfulness glorifies God.

A life that gives glory to God for his grace and a life of deepest gladness are the same life. And what makes them one is thankfulness.



Sunday, November 17, 2019

Such Good News Sunday, Real Change Is Possible With Him




 LISTEN

 Devotional by John Piper 
Put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. (Ephesians 4:24)
Christianity means change is possible. Deep, fundamental change. It is possible to become tenderhearted when once you were callous and insensitive. It is possible to stop being dominated by bitterness and anger. It is possible to become a loving person, no matter what your background has been.
 This is wonderfully freeing. It frees us from the terrible fatalism that says change is impossible for me. It frees me from mechanistic views that make my background my destiny.
And God’s commands always come with freeing, life-changing truth to believe. For example,
  • God adopted us as his children. We have a new Father and a new family. This breaks the fatalistic forces of our “family-of-origin.” “Call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven” (Matthew 23:9).
  • God loves us as his children. We are “loved children” (Ephesians 5:1). The command to imitate the love of God does not hang in the air, it comes with power: “Be imitators of God, as loved children.” “Love!” is the command and being loved by God is the power.
  • God has forgiven us in Christ. Be tenderhearted and forgiving just as God in Christ forgave you (Ephesians 4:32). What God did in Christ is powerful. It makes change possible. The command to be tenderhearted has more to do with what God did for you than what your mother or your father did to you. This kind of command means you can change.
  • Christ loved you and gave himself up for you. “Walk in love, as Christ loved [you]” (Ephesians 5:2). The command comes with life-changing truth. “Christ loved you.” At the moment when there is a chance to love, and some voice says, “You are not a loving person,” you can say, “Christ’s love for me makes me a new kind of person. His command to love is just as surely possible for me as his promise of love is true for me.”
Don’t be a fatalist. Be a Christian. Change is possible. God is alive. Christ is risen. The promises are true.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Veterans Day 2019, We Thank You!


.....AND OWE YOU HONOR, SUPPORT AND A HUGE DEBT OF GRATITUDE FOR YOUR SERVICE TO OUR COUNTRY!

The Spiritual Fight Is Already Won On Earth As In Heaven, No Matter How It May Look From Here

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG'S RAMPANT SEXISM
AS WE COME TO THE DARK, SHORT DAYS OF WINTER, REMEMBER THE PROMISES OF GOD

 FROM RICHARD KEW'S DAILY DEVOTIONS Revelation 12:7-17

 Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back, but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world-he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, "Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers and sisters has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!" And when the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. But the woman was given the two wings of the great eagle so that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness, to the place where she is to be nourished for a time, and times, and half a time. The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, to sweep her away with a flood. But the earth came to the help of the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from his mouth. Then the dragon became furious with the woman and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus. And he stood on the sand of the sea.

Thought for the Day What on earth does this mean - "war arose in heaven"? It suggests that the whole of our spiritual security in Christ is up for grabs. Let's remind ourselves that Revelation is an eternity's eye view of all that is going on, and that it speaks with an eternal perspective on time. Michael is the great archangel who first appears in Daniel 10 and now has summoned the heavenly host to fight against the dragon and his angels - the forces of evil. "If we are able to give this any meaning in our imaginations, it must be that the moral and political struggles of which we are aware, the battles between good and evil, between justice and injustice, which go on in this life, reflect a more primeval battle which has taken place in the spiritual sphere. Michael has won, and the dragon has lost. This loss means that he is thrown down to the earth, ejected from heaven altogether" (Bishop N. T. Wright). Michael and all angels might have been the players in this particular eternal scene, but it is the shedding of Christ's blood that has empowered the victory - as the voice from heaven says.

Thanksgiving for the Day We give thanks to God for angels, archangels, and all the company of heaven.

 Intercession for the Day Let us ask God to give us insight and wisdom as we find ourselves in the midst of this battle between Christ and the power of his Cross, and the forces of sin and evil that seek destruction of all that is good.

Collect for the Day
 
Lord God Almighty, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
as we gather in worship,
as we break bread and pour out wine
to feed on Christ by faith with thanksgiving,
give us an awareness that we are not a small group all alone
but are together with angels, archangels, and all the company of heaven.
In Jesus's name, Amen

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Sunday---Hillsdale College Builds Christ Chapel For Higher Learning and Ultimate Truth




CHRIST CHAPEL IS NOW IN THE CENTER OF EVERYTHING AT HILLSDALE COLLEGE, AS IT SHOULD BE:

THE DEDICATION OF CHRIST CHAPEL @ The New Criterion

In his remarks at the dedication, President Arnn noted that the difficult question is not why Hillsdale chose to build Christ Chapel. Rather, it is why other colleges have declined to do likewise. It is not for lack of money or precedent. No, it is because most other colleges have “turned away from things that are beautiful, which also means a turning away from things that are true and things that are good.” When you walk into Christ Chapel, you catch your breath in response to the soaring grandeur of the space. Its stateliness lifts the spirit and puts you, Arnn noted, in mind of “ultimate things.” That is by design, and it is a testimony to Stroik’s skill that the hundreds of people who crowded into Christ Chapel to witness its dedication instantly understood, and experienced, what Arnn was talking about. But the key point is that the architect is not just a manipulator of psychological feelings. He is also a conduit of realities that transcend the quotidian borders of our workaday lives. You do not hear much about beauty or its inextricable relation to the true and the good on most college campuses these days. Even to utter the words without the armor of scare quotes would be to seem quaint or naïve at best, compromised by affiliation with a putatively oppressive heritage at worst. But Arnn is right: when we give up on ultimate realities, we lose the foundation for more proximate loyalties. Why should we strive for the good? What is the foundation of human dignity? What is the justification for freedom? When we let go of ultimate realities we rob ourselves of the most compelling answers to such questions.

Read more.

JUSTICE THOMAS AT ABOUT 42 MINUTES:

Friday, November 1, 2019

Good News of the Day


1.VIA DRUDGE---THE TRUMPS MAKE THEIR PRIMARY/LEGAL ADDRESS FLORIDA,  leaving the high-tax, high-crime city of New York for good..  My only question is what took them so long?

2.VIA DON SURBER, VIA BBC---A herd of 500 goats was hired to clear the flammable brush away from the Ronald  Reagan Library earlier this year and helped save the compound from being destroyed this week by seasonal wildfires.

If anything else newsworthy comes to mind that doesn't completely  appall me, I'll be back later to post it.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Fall Comes Reluctantly To East Tennessee


TREES ALONG THE WAY ARE ONLY CONSIDERING co-operating with the season turning.  But it's still a beautiful time of year along the SoHo and in my most favorite small city in America,  Bristol Tennessee/Virginia where State Street divides the more polished Commonwealthers from the rougher Volunteers. It's a marvelous blend.


Sunday, October 27, 2019

Sunday, Psalm 90 Of Moses, Psalm 91

CONGRATULATIONS, PRESIDENT TRUMP!!!

The Eternity of God, and Man’s Frailty   

 PRAYER OF MOSES, THE MAN OF GOD

90 Lord, You have been our [a]dwelling place in all generations.
Before the mountains were brought forth,
Or ever You [b]had formed the earth and the world,
Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.
You turn man to destruction,
And say, “Return, O children of men.”
For a thousand years in Your sight
Are like yesterday when it is past,
And like a watch in the night.
You carry them away like a flood;
They are like a sleep.
In the morning they are like grass which grows up:
In the morning it flourishes and grows up;
In the evening it is cut down and withers.
For we have been consumed by Your anger,
And by Your wrath we are terrified.
You have set our iniquities before You,
Our secret sins in the light of Your countenance.
For all our days have passed away in Your wrath;
We finish our years like a sigh.
10 The days of our lives are seventy years;
And if by reason of strength they are eighty years,
Yet their boast is only labor and sorrow;
For it is soon cut off, and we fly away.
11 Who knows the power of Your anger?
For as the fear of You, so is Your wrath.
12 So teach us to number our days,
That we may gain a heart of wisdom.
13 Return, O Lord!
How long?
And have compassion on Your servants.
14 Oh, satisfy us early with Your mercy,
That we may rejoice and be glad all our days!
15 Make us glad according to the days in which You have afflicted us,
The years in which we have seen evil.
16 Let Your work appear to Your servants,
And Your glory to their children.
17 And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us,
And establish the work of our hands for us;
Yes, establish the work of our hands.

PSALM 90,  A Place For Pessimism

 

Safety of Abiding in the Presence of God

91 He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”
Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the [c]fowler
And from the perilous pestilence.
He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge;
His truth shall be your shield and [d]buckler.
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.
A thousand may fall at your side,
And ten thousand at your right hand;
But it shall not come near you.
Only with your eyes shall you look,
And see the reward of the wicked.
Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place,
10 No evil shall befall you,
Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;
11 For He shall give His angels charge over you,
To keep you in all your ways.
12 In their hands they shall [e]bear you up,
Lest you [f]dash your foot against a stone.
13 You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra,
The young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.
14 “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will [g]set him on high, because he has known My name.
15 He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble;
I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With [h]long life I will satisfy him,
And show him My salvation.”

PSALM 91,  A Psalm of Safety