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Culture and Religion

Is Mike Pence too political for church?

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There have been a lot of talk lately about Mike Pence speaking at the SBC. Many complained claiming it was divisive and political. Jonathan Leeman wrote an article for The Gospel Coalition criticizing the very idea of Mike Pence speaking. I will address this article in greater detail on the points that I agree and disagree with. But first, let me answer the very question I posed: Pence isn’t too political to address a congregation, but his speech was.

In short, Mike Pence’s address offered zero substantive theological content. It was merely about his privilege as serving as Vice President. While acknowledging this privilege merited a short section in the beginning, it needed no more continuation. Instead, Mike Pence droned on and on about his experiences and the administration’s accomplishments.

I think there’s only one way you can sum up this administration: It’s been 500 days of action, 500 days of accomplishment. It’s been 500 days of promises made and promises kept. 

Pence’s address followed a pattern of praising Trump with loosely intertwined references to God and praising his hosts as guest speakers often do. The intertwined religious language while praising the accomplishments, not of God, but of the President is the briefest summation of Pence’s speech to the SBC that can be offered. The only biblical passage cited was Psalm 126 in reference to a story that served as praise to the Trump administration. God wasn’t working though Trump in Pence’s speech. Instead, Trump was working. At the end of his speech, Pence did offer a superficial message about praying for America with a quoting scripture.

Mike Pence had an opportunity to address the leaders of many churches. He blew it. But would all politicians do the same?

Politicians Should Be in the Pew, Not the Pulpit?

Jonathan Leeman’s article for The Gospel Coalition draws this conclusion. He has five reasons for not allowing politicians to address a church event.

  1. No reason to give attention to a politician’s words over a plumber’s or an accountant’s, at least not in our assemblies or associations.
  2. Having a political leader address our churches or associations of churches tempts us to misconstrue our mission.
  3. Undermines our evangelistic and prophetic witness.
  4. Hurts the unity of Christ’s body

Reason one is most certainly true. However, I believe we ought to separate the person from the profession. On the basis of spiritual maturity and calling should a politician or any notable guest address an assembly. This first reason is the one I believe to have the most merit in regards to the situation at hand. Inviting a politician to address a Congregation is wrong if the only reason is that they are a politician. However, if the politician is a member of the church, what is wrong with having a fellow member speak?

Reasons two and three are certainly tied together in there logic. I believe these reasons hold merit for Pence’s sacrelidgious speech but are not inherently true of all politicians who accept such similar offers. Reasons two and three open a multitude of separate issues both independent and dependent on the circumstances. Meaning, yes this could happen, but the degree in which we can mitigate the temptation are limited for Satan is the tempter. In the case of Pence, reason three was definitely true. Many would see that the SBC tied itself to Trump. But that is not the fault of the SBC per se. But that is Pence’s fault for giving a campaign rally speech instead of a message. If Pence gave a theologically sound speech there should be little temptation to misconstrue the mission. The third reason is inevitable. Since the beginning, Christians witness has been undermined by the lies of Satan. The original Christians were thought to be cannibal and even atheists. We can’t always prevent these lies, but it would be good not to validate them which Pence did.

Now hurting the unity of the body of Christ is a weak point. Leeman’s fourth point is basically saying that Pence is too polarizing, because Trump is… Trump, on a National level to address a church. Pence is polarizing, but he was polarizing before Trump. The polarizing premise is true but, assuming Pence is indeed a follower off Christ, this would be the result of living a Christian life. Here’s another polarizing figure: Jack Phillips, the owner of Masterpiece Cake Shop. Would polarity disqualify him from speaking? If we are to apply national likability to our church speakers, we’re going to end up with a lot of TV personalities who don’t comprehend dyophysitism.

Like Jack Philips, Pence has taken a lot of flak for being a devout Christian. Isn’t this the kind of person who may have a good message to the assembly? Seemingly so. Again Pence under-delivered. To be fair, Leeman clearly states he doesn’t blanket outlaw politicians from speaking.

I can envision a few circumstances where there is some measure of mission overlap that could justify it. Maybe a group of Christian college presidents asks the secretary of education to address them. Or a Christian conference on work asks a Christian congressman to talk about working as a Christian on the Hill, so that attendees can apply the principles to their own settings.

But while it’s not an outlaw, such an unwritten policy places constraints on the church that are not inherently necessary. Leeman supposes some similar justification was used when The Gospel Coalition had Ben Sasse speak. In 2017, Ben Sasse addressed The Gospel Coalition and gave a theological speech. He was noted for sounding more like a pastor than a politician.

To me only two things matter:

  1. Theological substance
  2. Correct theological substance

On these two requirements I think the body of Christ would remain unified with a clear picture of its mission.

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Conspiracy Theory

The Liberty grabber Left has nuked its own argument over guns. Part I

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The Liberty grabber Left has nuked its own argument over guns Part I

The Left can’t argue that you don’t need a gun because the government won’t turn tyrannical while threatening that the government will turn tyrannical.

In what has to be the ultimate and game-changing tweet, Representative Eric Swalwell (D-CA) threatened nuclear annihilation to anyone who refuses to give up their right of self-defense. The ensuing ‘fallout’ seeing him resort to damage control tactic of saying that thermonuclear gun confiscation was just a ‘joke’. After all, Who hasn’t chuckled at the prospect of the government going tyrannical with an H-bomb? One can easily see the bumper stickers now: Vote Swalwell 2020- or I will nuke your…

One of the Left’s favorite little tactics is to accuse those of the Pro-Liberty right of being ‘terrorists’ as their usual method of demonizing their opponents. Take note of the Oxford English Dictionary definition of the word Terrorist:

Adjective [attributive] Unlawfully using violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims.

Origin
Late 18th century: from French terroriste, from Latin terror (see terror). The word was originally applied to supporters of the Jacobins in the French Revolution, who advocated repression and violence in pursuit of the principles of democracy and equality.

The long train of demands for gun confiscation

Perhaps Eric ‘Nukem’ Swalwell doesn’t realize his tweet was the ultimate in the listing of demands for gun confiscation by the Liberty grabber Left. A long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, as Thomas Jefferson termed it in the Declaration of Independence. That his erstwhile ‘joke’ he, Piers Morgan and others have made is the nuclear straw that broke the camels back. They, along with all the other Leftists who have demanded gun confiscation have initiated a sea of change in the debate over the common sense human right of self-defense.

The old approach by the Left that denied that confiscation was their ultimate goal

It used to be that the Left would hide behind a mask of support of the 2nd amendment. Never mind that each move they made was towards their final solution to the gun problem. Their tired refrain to most arguments about guns was that ‘No one is talking about gun confiscation’ or ‘No one is talking about repealing the 2nd amendment’ or some variation thereof. This was a way to short-circuit the debate to one of incremental or ‘progressive’ steps negating any of their ill effects.

Pointing out that some new law would punish 120 million gun owners for the deeds of a few criminals would see the abject denial of ‘no one is being punished’ or ‘No one is talking about gun confiscation’.

Mention that a new restriction on freedom infringing on the 2nd amendment and those who pretend to be Liberal on the Left would answer back ‘No one is talking about repealing the 2nd amendment’.

Talk about Intergalactic Background Checks [or Universal, enhanced or ‘Common sense’] would place government control over your personal property while acting as a stepping stone to confiscation would be met with the assertion that you must believe in conspiracy theories and that ‘No one is talking about gun confiscation’.

The disturbing trend in Leftists demands for gun confiscation.

We have previously established that the Left wants to ban and confiscate all guns with over 70 documented instances of those demands. Leaving out the multiplying effect of the excerpting and reprinting of those demands.

This arduous task was under taken to prove a point, that the Left has dropped the mask on this subject. But it has also revealed a disturbing trend over the years. What began a few years ago as few and far between calls for gun confiscation has morphed into far more strident and frequent demands. Demands that were only made in obscure far-Left online publications have found their way into the mainstream and supposedly Liberal media sources. The rate on the number of demands made per ‘serious crisis’ have accelerated to the ultimate demand made by Eric ‘Nukem’ Swalwell. This has manifestly changed the debate in favour of the Pro-Liberty Conservative side.

Consider a sampling of these demands:

What began as mere calls to amend the Constitution – removing a fundamental human right in the process – or banning certain ‘types’ of guns. Have become threats to turn over all of our guns or to ‘comprise’ and lose some of them with incremental steps.

Then the Left became impatient, unable to restrain it’s ‘collective’ hatred of Liberty.

For at least the past several years, to say that those two talking points [or a variation thereof] were a complete and total lie would be an understatement of epic proportions. But even now that hasn’t stopped Leftists from denying the obvious.

But now the Nuke comment has changed all of that, everyone is now seeing that the Left has been making their demands for gun confiscation in every corner of their echo chamber. This is part of the reason many have undertaken the task of documenting these demands such as Here, Here and of course here.

Their open demands for gun confiscation and for the suppression of other types of Liberty have changed the dynamic. It is now a question of Liberty versus tyranny – with the Left being on the side of governmental oppression to the tune of nuclear annihilation if one does not comply.

In part II we will examine the debate in terms of the new paradigm of Liberty versus Tyranny.

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Conspiracy Theory

Unicorns are everywhere

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Unicorns are everywhere

Have you noticed a sharp rise in the quantity and diversity of unicorn products? The mythical beasts seem to be popping up pretty much everywhere from cereal to bubble bath. There’s now unicorn “duck tape.”

It isn’t just products for kids. Many adult items like alcohol , adult costumes, and Starbucks flavors are popping up with unicorn symbolism. It’s even getting into the Christmas business with holiday decorations featuring unicorns. When did unicorns become a Christmas symbol to hang from the tree?

It’s freaky.

Next time you go out shopping at the mall, Walmart, or pretty much any department store, take a look and see if you notice unicorn symbolism.

According to Truthstream Media, the unicorn is a symbol used by the occult to represent transformation, fertility, sexuality, and androgyny. Much of the symbolism can be traced back to everyone’s favorite conspiracy theory targets, the Illuminati. Some believe the unicorn contains antichrist symbolism.

When a mythical creature is supposed to represent uniqueness and it seems to be present everywhere, doesn’t that run counter to its own message? As conspiracy theories go, this one is as magical as it gets. Much like unicorns themselves.

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Culture and Religion

The truth about Thanksgiving

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The truth about Thanksfiving

Thanksgiving for many of us has been presented as a time when diversity worked. When a group of people who came seeking refuge from religious persecution was saved by another group of people. A time when different cultures could come together and share what they had to offer one another, culminating in a feast consisting of corn and turkey that was made to honor that moment.

Sadly, the most recent depiction of this pivotal moment in our history has been turned into an American horror story. A story that depicts white Europeans who came to wipe out all the innocent natives by disease and war. The evil white man brought with them more evil white men who only wanted to destroy and kill, to take land that didn’t belong to them and annihilate anyone who wasn’t white. Because that’s all white people want.

Neither of these versions are remotely true.

The Pilgrims were not fleeing from persecution. Nor did they spread disease or kill an entire village of Native Americans. They simply came to a new world filled with the hope of freedom – freedom to live by the values and principles as defined by the word of God. They came to the new world to give their families that chance rather than being overtaken by a society they felt did not reflect those values. It was so important to them that they risked their lives and the lives of their children to make the voyage. A voyage that landed them far from where they were expecting.

After arriving to the new world it was clear that God had a plan. The circumstances which led up to the first thanksgiving – for both the Europeans and the Native American that helped them – could only be explained by divine providence.

Despite being told this is a time to apologize or to be shameful for our history as a nation, the truth is Thanksgiving should be the most important and revered time for all Americans. A time of remembrance of God’s grace and divine providence for a group of people that risked everything to honor Him, including a Native American by the name of Squanto.

The diversity of God’s grace is what we, Americans, should be celebrating. Not multiculturalism.

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