Tag Archives: The Holy Bible

Bill Lockwood: The American War on God & the First Amendment

by Bill Lockwood

American leaders have been hostile to God for over a century. Our cultural landscape has been re-shaped because of it. One of the most recent battles involves a High School in West Virginia.

The Rutherford Institute, led by John Whitehead, has a press release this week which once again shows the depth and nature of this war against Christianity. A high school student-led club called Youth Alive in Weston, West Virginia has practiced posting sticky notes with inspirational messages to encourage each other on a bulletin board in one of the hallways. It is student-led, featuring Young Republicans, Young Democrats, Youth Alive, and other groups–all which use the board.

The trouble apparently came when students began posting Bible verses of a self-help nature on the board. That was too much for the Lewis County High School administration, which promptly shut down the bulletin board completely. No Bible allowed. It probably would have still been in use had students posted a quote from Karl Marx such as “Workers of the World, Unite!”

The nature of the America’s struggle is here seen. It is The Bible that is under assault. With concerns over a non-constitutional measure called “Separation of church and state,” the Lewis County High School actually has capitulated to the onslaught of secular forces in America.

John Whitehead, a constitutional attorney, comments, “What a missed opportunity to support young people in their efforts to find positive, constructive methods of engaging with fellow students who might be struggling with feelings of depression, unhappiness and stress.”

Whitehead has been fighting this secular onslaught for forty years. “Not only is the removal of these inspirational notes a clear act of censorship that violates the First Amendment,” he said, “but it also sends the disheartening message to young people that school officials care more about doing what is politically correct than doing what is right.”

The Rutherford Institute is leading the legal fight for liberty in Lewis County, demanding the Youth Alive be allowed to re-post inspirational notes, including selections from Bible verses. Students need faith, encouragement and forgiveness in a world where people are broken-hearted, alone, insecure, stressed and confused. The Lewis County High School has actually violated the First Amendment and the Equal Access Act, a federal statute that guarantees religious and political clubs equal rights in public schools.

First Amendment?

Two things here. One, the First Amendment is designed to forbid government from endorsing or supporting one particular church in the Christian world—nothing to do with removing Bible, Christianity, or godly principles from the public square. The forbidding of “establishment of religion” in the First Amendment simply refers to a “National Denomination” in the sense that America was to have a State Church supported by public taxes.

As a matter of fact, Fisher Ames was the Founding Father who offered the final wording of the First Amendment. From his own writing it is clear that “religion” means “single Christian denomination.” The original version of the amendment, proposed in the Senate on Sep. 3, 1789, stated, “Congress will not make any law establishing any religious denomination.” The second version read, “Congress shall make no law establishing any particular denomination.” The third version reads similarly.

Note that the word “religion” is interchangeable with “denomination.” The founders were unanimous that the First Amendment merely forbade the establishment of a National Church. It had nothing to do with excluding God from the public square, least of all from schools. But what do secularists care about original intent?

Second, Dr. Samuel Mitcham, Jr., a military historian who has authored the recent It Wasn’t About Slavery: Exposing the Great Lie of the Civil War, stated in a recent interview on the American Liberty with Bill Lockwood radio show, that which we term “political correctness” is actually nothing less than Cultural Marxism. Everything has a place in the market-place of ideas—except the Bible.

Dr. Mitcham knows whereof he speaks. A college professor for over twenty years and author of more than 40 books on military history and the culture, Dr. Mitcham is right on target. Who would have guessed that none the less than Karl Marx would have been the dominant force in American political “correctness” within two hundred-fifty years of his Manifesto?

 

Bill Lockwood: Irreconcilable Differences

by Bill Lockwood

A recent article in Market Watch by Shawn Langlois highlights a frightening prospect for America’s future. A new survey released by the non-profit Victims of Communism in Washington, D.C., 36% of millennials say they approve of communism, which is up about 10 percentage points from a year ago. Added to that is that 70% of millennials say they are “likely to vote” for a socialist candidate. Further, 22% of the same age bracket say that “private property ought to be abolished.”

This is not merely about lack of education of the youth. It is about mal-education, specifically at the collegiate level, although High Schools and Junior Highs are preparing children for that brainwashing via the doctrine of Climate Change. As these young people begin assuming leadership roles in America, our society will be completely turned up-side down. This is the case precisely because socialism is not simply about economics, but is about a “cultural change.”

Charles Scaliger, in a recent article in The New American print magazine, explains. Socialism is “first and foremost… a social movement, not an economic one. The primary objective of socialism is to destroy the social and moral fabric of society, using economic control as a major tool.”

But this cultural change traces to a different view of human nature than that upon which western civilization has been built. This foundation is a biblical concept of man, nature, and society. Man was created in the image of God (Gen. 1:27) and life itself is a gift from God. Ideas of limited government, liberty and private property are by-products of this religious heritage.

For this reason, our Founders with one accord referred to this as a Christian nation. On the other hand, all forms of socialism reject this concept of human nature, and consequently, our free society forged by the Bible.

Socialism and Communism

Socialism and communism are two peas in the same pod, as seen from the Victims of Communism poll. Communism is merely a form of socialism. Both seek to overturn society, one by the bullet and the other by the ballot. Both trace their heritage to the philosophy of Karl Marx and his atheistic view of human nature and both therefore fervently reject the concept of human nature as presented by Moses in Genesis. Marx’s view in brief is that man’s nature is created solely by the economic system and one’s relationship to it. Society is therefore changed by altering the economic system.

That both socialism and communism are the same philosophy, consider also the fact that the Labour Party, the Socialist Party in Britain, put out in 1948 a Centennial Edition of The Manifesto of the Communist Party with an introduction written by a fellow socialist, Harold Laski. In 1961 the Socialist Party in America listed The Manifesto on its reading list as a socialist classic. Norman Thomas, who was known in yesteryear America as “Mr. Socialist,” said that the Manifesto was the first formulation of socialism.

Socialism and Fascism

Fascism is also another form of socialism. Professor Thomas DiLorenzo, in his excellent treatment of the entire topic in The Problem with Socialism, points out, for example, that Benito Mussolini was always a socialist. Fascism is merely national socialism as opposed to international socialism. National socialism, or fascism, is content to allow private business to survive as long as they are directed by government subsidies and policies—which is exactly where America is today.

View of Human Nature

Without suggesting that socialists follow Marx in everything, it is the case that all these views—socialism, communism, fascism– explicitly or implicitly accept the view of human nature that Karl Marx set forward. College students today are feasting at Marx’s table which eventually influences them adopt his world-view and specifically his view of human nature. This is why the differences today between the Left and Right are irreconcilable. These views begin at a different place regarding God, nature, and humanity. In reality, socialism itself is atheistic.

See how the atheistic view of human nature lies at the bottom. Mussolini wrote that “The Fascist conception of life stresses the importance of the State and accepts the individual only in so far as his interests coincide with the State….It is opposed to classic liberalism … [which] denied the State in the name of the individual.” (Quoted by DiLorenzo, 68).

The fact is is that Mussolini wanted the individual is to be subsumed into the State. What is the difference between this and the current proposals of the Democratic Party? State redistribution of wealth, income taxes, reparations, minimum wages, universal socialized medicine, guaranteed living income, and more make up the panoply of old socialist ideas pushed by the Democrats. All for the state, very little individual liberty. This is why the Democrats in America are always, and have always been, on a collision course with biblical values.

Vergilius Ferm, in his Encyclopedia of Religion, explains the depth of the conflict between Christianity and socialism:

“American socialism is heir to the tradition of materialism and atheism. It relies on the growth of automatic perfection, not indeed by virtue of the given natural faculties of man, but as the product of causally inevitable economic changes. The result is parallel to that of the liberal utopia, a self-contained world of man, individualistic here, collectivist there, and redeemed from evil, once and for all, by the economic process, much as this requires men conscious of their opportunity. This is an overtly anti-Christian doctrine.”

The social and moral fabric of American society must be remade, per the socialists, aka Democrats. This is also why the war in America occurring now is not simply about politics, left or right. It is all about biblical values and whether we will honor them.

 

Bill Lockwood: Was Jesus a “Refugee?”

by Bill Lockwood

As reported by CNN, a Methodist church in California is displaying a nativity scene depicting Jesus, Mary and Joseph as refugees in cages to “draw attention to the conditions faced by migrants seeking asylum in the United States.” The Claremont United Methodist Church, which is about 30 miles east of Los Angeles, “posted the photo on its website showing the three held in separate cages topped with barbed wire. The baby Jesus is wrapped in a silver foil blanket.” The “lead pastor” Karen Clark Ristine told CNN that “we thought about the most famous refugee family in the world.”

The United Methodist Church, ever ready to warp biblical narratives into liberal political messages, has displayed a stunning ignorance of the Bible. As Gary DeMar observes, “Leftists have little regard for the Bible unless it can be used to scold Christians for judging righteously … and to support socialism based on a passage about voluntary giving (Acts 2:42-45; 4:32-35).”

As I wrote in a former article, there are several biblical considerations that need be made. (1) God Himself established borders of nations. Read Acts 17:26. (2) God demanded that Old Testament Israel respect the borders of other nations. God gave Mt. Seir to Esau and his descendants for a “possession.” Therefore, Israel, when coming out of Egypt, was not to cross it (Deuteronomy. 2:5). The same regarded Israel’s respect of Moab’s borders.

(3) Once settled in Canaan, the Israelites were sternly warned to “drive the Canaanites out.” The stated reason for this was to preserve the culture of Israel (Numbers. 33:51,52). (4) Even Abraham was deported once it was discovered that he lied to border agents. Read Genesis 12. (5) Regarding Jesus and the holy family, as DeMar notes, they were living within the confines of the Roman Empire. Egypt was part of the Roman Empire at the time of Jesus’ birth. Their escape from Bethlehem was only to another Roman Province. (6) Another command given to Joseph and Mary was that they were to return to their homeland after the death of Herod (Matthew. 2:20). DeMar asks, “How many refugees return to their home nations after entering the United States?”

Bill Lockwood: The Name of God

by Bill Lockwood

Alfred Edersheim, the Jewish commentator who became a Christian, explains why Matthew’s gospel (3:2) will use the phraseology ‘Kingdom of Heaven’ while ‘Kingdom of God,’ appears elsewhere (e.g. Mark 1:4).

According to the Rabbinic views of the time, the terms ‘Kingdom of heaven,’ and ‘Kingdom of God’ … were equivalent. In fact, the word ‘heaven’ was very often used instead of ‘God,’ so as to avoid unduly familiarizing the ear with the Sacred Name. This probably accounts for the exclusive use of the expression ‘Kingdom of Heaven’ in the Gospel by Matthew.

I was raised by a godly Christian mother who explained to me when very young that the Jews took such care when even writing the name of God in copies of the Scriptures that they washed their hands before putting pen to parchment to write it. I never heard her speak of God except in sober tones.

Kimberly Burnham, in the website ReformJudaism.org, posted an article entitled “Writing the Torah and Honoring the Name of God.” In it she interviewed Rabbi Kevin Hale who “talked about going to the river near his house to wash himself in a mikveh (ritual bath) before writing the name of God in the Torah scroll he worked on.

The reason there are very few errors is the intentionality that goes into the writing of the name of God …‘Every letter is sung out as you write, and there is an acute awareness of begin in the presence of something great,’ Hale said, noting that the name of God is written with a unique quill using special ink, a 2,000-year-old recipe.

The third commandment of the Decalogue forbids “taking the name of the Lord in vain.” Vain means empty, nothing, worthless. Writer Kevin DeYoung, senior pastor at Christ Covenant Church in Matthews, North Carolina, and assistant professor of systematic theology at Reformed Theological Seminary in Charlotte, asks this pointed question: “How did ‘watch your mouth’ make the top ten?” The answer is simple: God wants us to revere His name.

That being said, how has it come to pass that Christians, who ought of all people, to honor the name of God, have allowed a hedonistic godless blasphemous culture to influence our manner of speaking and thinking in that “O my G_____ ”, or equivalent expressions have become the norm?

DeYoung reflects on light-hearted “nicknames” that people use to refer to one another. Then he comments,

“But funny nicknames given to us is one thing; irreverent use of God’s name is another. Everywhere in Scripture the name of the Lord is exalted in the highest possible terms. ‘O Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!’ (Psa. 8:1). ‘Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name’ (Psa. 29:2). The first petition of the Lord’s prayer is ‘Hallowed be your name’ (Matt. 6:9). The apostles proclaim that ‘there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved’ (Acts 4:12). Paul assured the Romans that ‘everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved’ (Rom. 10:13). And the culminating event in all of creation is when, ‘at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of god the Father’ (Phil. 2:10-11). The Bible does not want us to forget the holy importance of the divine name.

Nothing marks the godlessness of a culture as much as dishonoring the name of God.

Bill Lockwood: Why Should Christians be Interested in Opposing Socialism?

by Bill Lockwood

Modern America has been trained to compartmentalize their lives by placing “religion” and worshipping in the church-house or privacy of the home as separate and distinct from “politics.” “Politics” is thought to be what one does when going to the ballot box. Never should these two ideas meet. So is the conventional wisdom.

It is further supposed that ideas such as socialism, communism, statism, collectivism or their variants are merely “political theories” that have no bearing on religious teaching, or more than that—that biblical teaching does not touch such ideas.

This is all very shallow and without any serious thought into what the biblical view of the world includes. Let’s begin with the Bible. Christian truth is one organism. It has a unity and coherence the parts of which cannot be arbitrarily removed without doing violence to the whole. In the words of the great Christian writer James Orr,

“He who with his whole heart believes in Jesus as the Son of God is thereby committed to much else besides. He is committed to a view of God, to a view of man, to a view of sin, to a view of Redemption, to a view of the purpose of God in creation and history, found only in Christianity. This forms a Weltanschauung, or “Christian view of the world” which stands in marked contrast with theories wrought out from purely philosophical or scientific viewpoint.” 1

This is why there is deep antagonism between Bible believers and scientific theories of the origin of the world and mankind. The schism cannot be papered over by simply saying, “I believe in God and the general theory of evolution.” The naturalistic view of the world begins with this sign: “NO MIRACLES ALLOWED.” The Christian view of the world begins with this: “In the beginning GOD CREATED the heavens and the earth.” There is no middle ground.

Socialism

The same is true regarding socialism. Oscar Jaszi was a noted Hungarian social scientist, historian, and politician of the 19th century. Jaszi found himself in the middle of socialist revolutions in Europe during the formative years of communism/socialism, labor parties, and liberal democratic movements. Later, teaching at Oberlin College in Ohio, he authored works published by the University of Chicago Press. He wrote the entry under Socialism in 1934 for the Encyclopedia of Social Sciences, a multi-volume scholarly work. In his lengthy article on “Socialism” for the Encyclopedia, Jaszi summarizes six points which are characteristic of all collectivist movements. They are as follows:

  1. A condemnation of the existing political and social order as unjust
  2. An advocacy of a new order consistent with moral values
  3. A belief that this ideal is realizable
  4. A conviction that the immorality of the established order is traceable not to a fixed world order or to the unchanging nature of man but to corrupt institutions
  5. A program of action leading to the ideal through fundamental remolding of human nature or of institutions or both
  6. A revolutionary will to carry out this program.

Jaszi then issues this warning. “The fact can scarcely be overemphasized that no true socialist is satisfied with merely economic reforms but advocates also a distinct educational, ethical, and aesthetic policy.”

At the heart of all socialistic ideas, including communism, Nazism, statism, and fascism, is an atheistic view of man. That is, mankind is solely determined by physical, social, and/or economic factors. This is directly at variance with the biblical view of man, which teaches that the problem with mankind is sin, a rebellion against God (Rom. 3:10-12).

To teach that God Exists sets one at war with atheism which says there is no God. To teach that there is One God (Deut. 6:4) is to oppose polytheism which says there are many gods. It is also to oppose the pagan worldview which believes that deity is somehow embodied in the earth. And to teach that God created man in his own image—a freewill being whose problem is SIN, is to be at variance with the socialistic creed that preaches the problems of mankind arise from the environment and that by reforming social institutions problems will be solved.

It is simple. Belief in the biblical view of God opposes atheism and the biblical view of man opposes socialism. Further, since politics is defined as the principles by which society should be governed, should not Christians be engaged in combatting socialistic ideas that engraft themselves into a culture—even if they are in the political arena?

1 The Christian View of God and the World, p. 4.

Bill Lockwood: True Religion Results in Free-Will Giving: Not Jizya or Socialistic Forcible Taxation & Redistribution

by Bill Lockwood

By speaking of the reign of Solomon (970-931 B.C.), which was a foreshadowing of Christ’s kingdom, the Psalmist in chapter 72 depicts the expansive coming reign as being from “sea to sea, and from the river to the ends of the earth” (72:8). During this reign of the Messiah the kings of Tarshish and of the isles shall bring presents: the kings of Sheba and Seba shall offer gifts (10).

Charles Spurgeon, the matchless commentator on the Psalms, observed at these verses,

…true religion leads to generous giving; we are not taxed in Christ’s dominions, but we are delighted to offer freely to him… This free-will offering is all Christ and his church desire; they want to forced levies and distraints [to seize by distress], let all men give of their own free will, kings as well as commoners; …

Free will offerings. This is the only giving known in the New Testament. Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 9:7 “Let each man do according as he has purposed in his heart; not grudgingly, nor of necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver.” For this reason, Paul writes the letter and encourages by persuasion the churches to freely give. How beautiful is this precedent compared to other systems and man-made religions and systems!

Compare Giving to Islamic Jizya

Mohammed absolutely established that people of other religious persuasions must pay a poll tax to Muslims called the jizya. This was specifically that they might recognize they were inferior to Muslims. “Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book (Jews and Christians), until they pay the jizya with willing submission and feel themselves subdued” (Koran 9:29).

From the religionofpeace.com website:

Traditionally the collection of the jizya occurs at a ceremony that is designed to emphasize the subordinate status of the non-Muslim, where the subject is often struck in a humiliating fashion. M.A. Khan recounts that some Islamic clerics encouraged tax collectors to spit into the mouths of Hindu dhimmis during the process. He also quotes the popular Sufi teacher, Shaykh Ahmad Sirhindi:

The honor of Islam lies in insulting the unbelief and the unbelievers (kafirs). One who respects kafirs dishonors Muslims… The real purpose of levying the Jizya on them is to humiliate them… [and] they remain terrified and trembling.

The jizya (or extortion) is one of the main cornerstones of the entire system of Islam. It institutionalizes forever the fact that, in the eyes of Muslims, non-Muslims have an inferior status in Muslim nations.

Another example is this that there is no way to live peaceably with Islam. Where it has dominated a culture, it has exacted a forcible toll on all non-Muslim peoples throughout the centuries—without exception. As it develops and engulfs a culture, Islam is designed to extinguish all Kafir civilizations. It is but a reflection of Mohammed himself who did not stop the conquering of Arabia until 100% of his demands were met.

This is just one example that demonstrates that Islam is not a religion of God, depending upon thoughtful reasoning and persuasion by argumentation; but a man-made totalitarian system relying solely upon force. When one comes out of the dank dungeon of Islam, and stands upon the mountaintops of Christianity, he is able to breathe the clean fresh air of a religion of the heart whose founder, Jesus Christ, never used violence or force to subjugate man, but died on the cross for the sins of the world.

Compare Giving to Socialism or Social Justice

Social Justice is not simply doing humanitarian acts of kindness as Buckley and Dobson suppose in Humanitarian Jesus: Social Justice and the Cross. “The Social Gospel asks Christians to be concerned and invested in the world around them” (p. 42). The authors suggest that the entire issue is about whether first to give a tract or a sandwich to those in need? (p. 43) This is ignorance as to what is social justice or socialism.

The great author and thinker Thomas Sowell explains: “Central to the concept of social justice is the notion that individuals are entitled to some share in the wealth produced by society, and irrespective of any individual contributions made or not made to the production of that wealth.” (A Conflict of Visions, 216)

But if all people in society are entitled to a share in that which I produce, how shall this be enforced? For this reason, socialism by definition implies the “expansion of the government domain to produce social results to which particular individuals are morally entitled.”

So states The National Association of Scholars. The term “social justice”, or socialism, they explain, is today understood to mean the “advocacy of egalitarian access to income through state-sponsored redistribution.”

But state-sponsored redistribution of my production begins with theft. Forcible removing from me of the fruits of my own production to give to others. This is not even remotely associated with the free-will giving taught by Christianity. If it is, why must there be a gigantic state to enforce it?

The French writer, Frederic Bastiat was correct therefore to explain socialism as plunder.

See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime. . . It is impossible to introduce into society a greater change and a greater evil than this: the conversion of the law into an instrument of plunder. (Bastiat, The Law, p. 17).

That the above has already occurred in America is obvious. The evil is already upon us. A gigantic welfare state. Former Texas Congressman Ron Paul summarizes it well.

From lower-income Americans who rely on food stamps, public housing, and other government programs, to middle-class Americans who live in homes they could not afford without assistance from federal agencies like Fannies Mae and Freddie Mac, to college students reliant on government-subsidized student loans, to senior citizens reliant on Social Security and Medicare, to billionaire CEOs whose companies rely on bailouts, subsidies, laws and regulations written to benefit politically-powerful businesses, and government contracts, most Americans are reliant on at least one federal program. (Dec. 31, 2018. Ronpaulinstitute.org)

Make no mistake. The Welfare State is nothing akin to the free-will giving of Christianity. Once again, instead of relying on force to confiscate and redistribute, the early church in the book of Acts willingly and freely gave of their possessions to assist others (Acts 2:43-47; 5:1-4). There is a world of difference between the Bible and the systems of man.

Bill Lockwood: Preaching against Homosexuality?

by Bill Lockwood

Many voices in the Catholic Church are exulting in the September 1 appointment by Pope Francis of pro-homosexual Archbishop Matteo Zuppi of Bologna, Italy to the position of cardinal. Zuppi was one of 13 individuals promoted. PinkNews, an online news agency for the global LGBT+ community, praised the new appointment precisely because Zuppi is a “pro-LGBT+” advocate.

Another celebrant to the appointment is Fr. James Martin, author of a pro-LGBT+ Catholic book called Building a Bridge. Zuppi had written the “Foreward” to Martin’s book. According to PinkNews, “Zuppi identifies that there is ‘a bridge that needs continuous building’ between the Church and the LGTB+ community, who he describes as ‘people of God.’”

Amazingly, so far from the word of God have many Catholics strayed that Archbishop Zuppi calls the homosexual network in the world “the people of God.” The fact that Zuppi has been named as “cardinal” means he will be able to vote for the next pope when that time arrives (Michael Chapman, CNSnews.com; 9-9-19).

According to PinkNews, the appointment is also “celebrated” among “more progressive Christians, who hope the Pope’s choice of cardinals reflects his vision for ‘a Church of dialogue.’”

So here it is. The Roman Catholic Church is setting a trajectory for pro-homosexual teaching in the future, discarding not only hundreds of years of teaching, but more importantly, the clear biblical teaching which describes homosexuality as not only sin, but “perversion” (Jude 7, NIV). But such is expected to be the case in a church not found on the pages of the New Testament.

Reaction

The real shocker in all of this is the reaction which many in the “Christian world” have exhibited. Instead of lamenting the direction of society, including those who claim to be “spiritual leaders,” many are celebrating it. If not celebrating—at least defending it.

One person wrote in response to the posted simple news story—“So if you are a Christian or go to church you have to hate gays?”

This is the knee-jerk reaction of people who cannot take biblical teaching regarding sin of any kind. They hurl accusations of “hatred” upon those who point out sin. By this logic Jesus Himself was a “hater” because he taught against “fornication”—which includes homosexuality (Matt. 19:9).

Another responded: “Let him that is without sin, cast the first stone.”

Once again, an anemic effort to thwart the biblical teaching against sin. Since all have sinned (Rom. 3:23) we might as well just put a cork in our mouths when it comes to quoting passages that condemn sin. But more than this, the Bible nowhere teaches that all sin is the same sin.

It is true that all sin separates us from God (Isa. 59:1-2); but it is also true that some sins have a much more deleterious effect upon society and upon one’s soul than other sins. Even Jesus referred to some sins “as greater” (John 19:11). Paul wrote that some sins have more serious effect upon one’s body (1 Cor. 6:18), perhaps by twisting the mind more wickedly.

It is difficult to believe that modern people have come to the conclusion that the sin of burning children alive in the fires to false gods—as did some Israelites in the OT (see 2 Kings 23:10; Jer. 32:35, et. al.)—is no more culpable than a “white lie” spoken to one’s parents. Both are sins—but one not only has many more harmful effects on society as a whole but indicates a deeper depth of depravity than the other.

So it is with homosexuality. Inspired Apostle Paul called the sin of homosexuality “unnatural” (Rom. 1:26) and a “vile passion.” It occurs when God “has given up a society” (1:24). Jude referred to it as “going after strange flesh” (Jude 7, ASV) or “perversion” (NIV). God said plainly in Leviticus that there were a number of particular sins, including bestiality and homosexuality, for which the “land will vomit you out” (Lev. 18:25, 28; 20:22). Not all sins fell into this category. Not all sins are classed as “perverted.”

Still another asks, “Do you love the sinner when you point out sin?” Once more, this sounds as if the biblical doctrine against homosexuality makes us just simply nervous. We immediately dodge by questioning the motives of someone pointing out the sin of homosexuality.

What if I had no love of God in my heart for any sinner? Would that change the truth? Absolutely not. Jonah preached the truth of God to Nineveh (Jonah 3). Nineveh would be overthrown unless they repented. I wonder if the Ninevites squirmed beneath this message by saying—“do you have LOVE for us Ninevites?” –as if to say that somehow the message would be changed if he did not.

But as a matter of fact, Jonah did NOT have love of people in his heart. He was very angry (Jonah 4:1) that Nineveh was spared upon their repentance. He wanted them destroyed!! As all can easily see however, this had nothing to do with the message itself. Jonah delivered the message faithfully even though his motives were not what they ought to be.

It is a perfect illustration of the modern generation being non-thinking, even practicing “avoidance behavior,” on the topic of sin. Whenever sin is pointed out or preached against, we dismiss the teaching by suggesting that “too many people hate.”

Reality is: we are so unaccustomed to God’s Unfiltered Word that we perform many mental gymnastics to avoid its impact—including charging preachers of the Word with being “haters.”

If I do not love one person in the world as I preach it does not change the fact that I am to preach and people need to accept the truth of God. The issue of homosexuality is not whether I love or hate. The issue is: What does the Bible teach, and am I to teach it? If I do not love as I am commanded to do, that is another issue entirely. And what IS occurring today is an overturning of society by the false prophets of the Roman Church by the appointment of pro-homosexual bishops to higher leadership positions.

Bill Lockwood: Mixing Politics and Religion

by Bill Lockwood

In a letter to his wife Abigail in May, 1780, John Adams famously wrote:

I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce, and agriculture, in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain.

To John Adams the most important element of life was family. His continual service to the nation included that he was a delegate to the Continental Congress, a delegate to the Constitutional Convention, an official Minister to England on behalf of the United States, and the second President of the United States. But this service he considered a “necessary evil” in order that he might enjoy pleasures of family and that his own future generations might enjoy the same.

In our modern era where warnings against “mixing politics and religion” are memorized and repeated without any real deep thought as to why or even what this means, Adams teaches us a few things about it. His keen mind was able to probe the issues of life and distill the principles and realities involved.

In analyzing what Adams meant when he said “I must study politics that my sons may have liberty to study …”, note the following.

What is Politics?

First, what is Politics? Politics simply means the management or administration of society. The word “politics’ is from the Greek word ‘politika’ meaning the “affairs of a city.” It is “the process of making decisions that apply to members of a group” (Wikepedia). Frequently the word “politics” is used negatively, such as in “play politics.” The root idea of the word, however, refers to principles by which people are to be governed.

The question now becomes, by what set of principles shall we govern society? Shall we use biblical principles or humanistic ones? Shall we use God-inspired principles upon which to base human laws, or shall we simply drift off into allowing people to do “what every man thinks is right in his own eyes?” The only issue in our society therefore is whether or not we plan to manage ourselves according to Christian principles.

This applies to a wide variety of social levels: the workplace, the office, the team, the church, or cities and nations; there is even “international politics.” All policies that are adopted in these various groups are called “public policies” precisely because those policies effect others. Once again, these policies will either reflect Christianity or humanism (non-religion).

These facts being so, whence comes the idea that Christian people should remain free from “politics?” Is it somehow inconsistent with biblical values that Christians should not influence public policy?

Freedom Politics is Pro-Family

Returning to Adams’ quote above, note that he was interested in freedom for his family. He wanted to construct a society along Christian principles that by this framework of freedom his family in future generations might continue to enjoy liberty. Specifically, limited government would allow personal freedom to flourish while at the same time curtail dictatorships or top-down controls that destroy freedom.

A sidebar note: Many confuse Roman Catholicism with New Testament Christianity. Not only were the colonists almost 95% Protestant in their belief-systems, but were afraid of Catholicism. The reason for this is clear. Roman Catholicism is an unbiblical political system that was constructed through the centuries to mimic Old World kingdoms such as the Roman. It too, therefore, is dictatorial and stifles freedom. Its record as a tyrannical power is matched only by other forms of government absolutisms.

Adams was well-aware of all of this. This is why that during the tumultuous formation of the United States he felt that he needed to invest time in order to create a political landscape such that allowed freedom to ring—but this was in order that his children might be able to enjoy more pleasurable pursuits. The political machinery of a nation is a direct reflection of religious values and presuppositions that underlie the society. For future family freedom, Christian politics was necessary.

Politics was not just one “hobby” that Adams chose among others he might have chosen, even though that is the casual way people view politics today. Adams showed this by couching it in his word “must.” In other words, politics was his “duty.” It functioned as an obligation. Political freedom is foundational to other freedoms.

To illustrate, Adams used “war.” Those who enjoy freedom and liberty rely on the sacrifices of untold thousands who study war and become warriors. A warriors’ occupation is not like playing sports, or collecting old cars or antiques. Without a fight for freedom, there would be no games to play or antiques to collect. Someone must do this business of war if we are to have pleasures of life. If we were all running for our lives from enemy soldiers, who cares about playing games?

So also is managing people by politics. It is foundational to freedom at large. For this reason, Cicero, the ancient Roman statesman at the time of Julius Caesar, observed: “For there is really no occupation in which human virtue approaches more closely the august function of the gods than that of founding states or preserving those already in existence.”

So exactly. Christians, being correctly informed, can change the character of the political landscape. By bringing the moral standards of Christ into the civic arena, society itself is transformed. The gospel of Christ not only changes lives and hearts of men, but the course of civil government. Why should Christians not be involved in politics?

Bill Lockwood: The Bible and Illegal Immigration

The Bible and Illegal Immigration  “…those that you let remain of them be as pricks in your eyes, and as thorns in your sides, and they shall vex you in the land wherein ye dwell… “

by Bill Lockwood

As illegal immigration assists dragging our culture downward into a more godless, violent and confused society, it is shocking that many preachers, who should be reflecting biblical values, have taken the position that somehow the liberal multicultural goal of open borders is beneficial for evangelism. People are becoming confused as to whether or not America should even have boundaries and borders and whether it is godly to protect those borders.

First, God Himself established borders of nations. In Acts 17:26 Paul, speaking to Greeks in Athens, stated that “God has made of one, every nation of men to dwell on the face of the earth; having determined their appointed seasons, and bounds of their habitation.

Note the several elements of the passage. (1) God has made of every nation one—or He made from one every nation of mankind. This is in direct opposition to the then current Greek belief that their own origin was superior to other races. (2) God determined their appointed times, that is, their divinely appointed periods. Nations do not rise and fall without God. It is not a survival of the fittest. (3) Boundaries of nations are divinely fixed. However modern man wishes to understand the providence of God, Paul plainly states that God has a hand in national boundaries.

The classic Old Testament text on this subject is Deut. 32:8. “When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance; When he separated the children of men …” The last comment, about “separating” the children of men refers to God’s division between peoples at the Tower of Babel (Gen. 11:8).

Second, God demanded that Israel respect borders of other nations. As Israel came out of Egypt, the people were to by-pass some of the nations respecting their borders because God had given them that territory. One of those nations was Edom. “I have given Mt. Seir to Esau for a possession,” said the Lord, therefore, Israel was not to enter it (Deut. 2:5). He said the same regarding the country of Moab.

Later (Num. 20), when Israel, under the leadership of Moses, applied to Edom to pass through its territory on their way toward Canaan, Edom said no. After a second application and refusal Israel turned to go another way. A nation has the right to determine who comes into its territory and even God’s selected leader Moses could not violate that right.

On the other hand, God had prior appointed that the territory of the Amorite and Canaanite (Palestine) would be given to Israel (see Deut. 1). This was a divine judgment upon those Canaanite nations (see Gen. 15:15-16) because of their extreme wickedness including child sacrifice.

Consider also the fact that at one point in Genesis history Abraham, God’s chosen, immigrated to Egypt (Gen. 12). Abraham, however, lied about the status of his wife Sarah at one of the checkpoints. When his lie was discovered by the Egyptians he was deported! God did not step in and demand that Abraham and his family be protected at the expense of the Egyptian government.

Third, once settled in Canaan, the Israelites were sternly warned on multiple occasions to “drive the Canaanites out.” Even forty years previously, when Israel was still at Mt. Sinai, God had promised to drive out the inhabitants of the land (Exod. 33:2). Once Joshua took the leadership and conquered most of Canaan, he commanded the cooperation of the Israelites in “driving out” the Canaanites (e.g. Joshua 17:17-19).

The stated reason for driving out the nations that formerly inhabited Israel was to preserve the culture of Israel. The word “culture” itself refers to the religious presuppositions that lie beneath a society.

When you pass over the Jordan into the land of Canaan, then ye shall drive out the inhabitants of the land before you, and destroy all their figured stones, and destroy all their molten images, and demolish all their high places [of idol worship], and ye shall take possession of the land …” (Num. 33:51,52)

Moses continued. “But if you will not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then shall those that you let remain of them be as pricks in your eyes, and as thorns in your sides, and they shall vex you in the land wherein ye dwell” (v. 55). That Israel did not drive out the Canaanite people from Israel is the theme of the book of Judges (see chapter 1). The rest of the book shows perfectly well what occurs when a culture is not preserved.

As one professor wisely told me, “marriage is not a reformatory school”—so also “open borders is not a missionary program.” It is a recipe for the disintegration and complete annihilation of what is left of America’s Christian culture.

After Israel’s settlement in Canaan each tribe had a sovereign boundary that was detailed in the sacred record (Joshua 15). Not only was tribal territory to be respected in Israel, but private property was considered sacred and one of the sins that was prosecuted was “moving boundary markers” of someone’s property—which is the same as stealing private land. In no text in Holy Writ does anyone find the concept that people are not to own private property or that there is no such thing as Israelite tribal territory or national boundaries.

Fourth, God forbade Israelites from making any personal and marital contracts with the pagan people that formerly inhabited the land. Deuteronomy 7:1-5 is emphatic. If individual Israelites mixed in marriage relationships with the idolaters and pagans known as the Canaanites, the pure religion of Israel would be eroded.

You shall make no covenant with them, nor show mercy unto them; neither shalt thou make marriages with them; … for he will turn away thy son from following me, that they may serve other gods …” For this reason, God instructed, “You shall break down their altars and dash in pieces their pillars, and hew down their Asherim, and burn their graven images with fire.”

God strictly warned the Israelites again through Joshua, the next generation leader: “For if you ever go back and cling to the rest of these nations, these which remain among you, and intermarry with them, so that you associate with them and they with you, The Lord will not continue to drive them out, but they will become a share and a trap for you; a whip on your sides and thorns in your eyes until you perish from the land” (Joshua 23:12,13).

The point here is not to recommend an induction program for those seeking citizenship in the United States, but to point out that biblically speaking, the concept of sovereign borders is paramount in Old Testament Israel. The idea therefore that America should have no borders, and thereby no border enforcement, is certainly not biblical. There is nothing ungodly about having borders or boundaries around a nation and having boundaries implies that those whose boundaries they are have the right to manage them. Less than this is confusion on the face of the deep.

John Locke pointed out that unless society can provide a code of fixed and enforceable laws, man might as well stayed in the jungle (Skousen, 5,000 Year Leap, 244).

To this end it is that men give up all their natural power to the society they enter into, and the community put the legislative power into such hands as they think fit, with this trust, that they shall be governed by declared laws, or else their peace, quiet, and property will still be at the same uncertainty as it was in the state of Nature.

Is America a sovereign nation? Many on the left apparently disdain that idea and are pushing for open borders. That may be their preference, but don’t come to the Bible with such an agenda.

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