Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Child Poverty and the Playboy Philosophy

On my soap box again...
Why the John Edwards Story Matters
It matters because it highlights, first of all, a key cause of the poverty Sen. Edwards once commendably made a central aspect of his presidential campaign. Numberless children wake up in grinding poverty because their fathers are “deadbeat dads” just like (if the story is true) Edwards, just without the means to secretly transfer funds for child support.

In admitting the affair, Edwards tells us he fell due to his narcissism. He started to see himself as “special,” and exempt from the boundaries of marriage and fatherhood. Of course he did. So does the impoverished teenage boy who skips town when his girlfriend sees two pink lines. So does the middle-aged mid-level success story who offers $300 to his paramour to “put it all behind us.”

Playboy magazine may not have the readership or the influence it once enjoyed, but the sexual philosophy championed by its founder, Hugh Hefner, flourishes, more and more, it seems, and its dismal legacy will be with us much longer. Hefner's philosophy could be summed up in a quote by our own former prime minister, Pierre Trudeau, that, "...the state has no business in the bedrooms of the nation." Put simply, sexual activity between two consenting adults is no one's business but those two (or I suppose, more) adults. And unfortunately, this sense of sexual entitlement is filtering down to younger and younger ages. Our children are becoming exposed more and more to ideas that portray all kinds of sexual activity as harmless fun and even a right.

But the notion that one can have one's fun and then move on has had, and will continue to have, disastrous consequences. Because too often, those consenting adults (or teens) are not really the only ones involved. Aside from the fact that there may be a wronged wife or husband in an adulterous affair, there is often a third party, an entirely innocent one, who may become involved -- a child.

Children born out of wedlock almost invariably become the responsibility of the mother to raise. And unfortunately, in too many cases, this condemns them to a life of poverty. Single parents do not normally earn as much as would be available in a two-parent family, child support (if there is any) notwithstanding. It is more difficult for a young single mother to continue her education, thereby further limiting her earning potential.

Moral guidelines were given to us by God, and they were given us for a reason. Even when some of the leading Bible figures (Abraham and David, just to name two) departed from them, there were long lasting consequences. And following them today would eliminate a lot of heartache, both on the personal level and for society as a whole.

But will we learn? Somehow I doubt it

Take Care

h/t: Mere Comments

Monday, 21 September 2009

Albert Mohler on the Death of God

Interesting "time capsule" from Al Mohler on this morning's blog, harking back to the, "God is dead" fad of the '60's. As I mention in my testimony, this controversy was part of my own history. The United Church of Canada bought into it big time, and in my opinion, if it wasn't the beginning, it was a primary symptom of a whole package of other issues that contributed to that denomination's decline. I believe it is not unlike the various liberal denominations' current fatal self absorption with issues of sexuality.

Dr Mohler notes,
Seen in retrospect, it is clear that the "Death of God" movement did not survive the 1960s. Within a few short years, much of the stridency of the secular tide had been repackaged into the more benign-appearing "spiritualities" of the postmodern age.

The movement did accomplish one thing -- it drove me out of the United Church, the initial incident in the chain of life events that resulted in God eventually opening my eyes and taking me out of the kingdom of darkness and into His kingdom of light.

If the current apostasy does the same for others it will have served God's purposes well. Those in the throes of the current controversies will one day look back and see that it was all part of the plan.

Take Care

Monday, 14 September 2009

Can We Choose Not To Love God?

I stumbled across a discussion between a reformed Protestant and a Roman Catholic doctoral student regarding their respective views on justification.
You seem to be implying that the Protestant understanding of sola fide involves a faith that is devoid of fruit. But such is not the case. Both the Reformers and modern Protestants would agree with the Apostle James that a faith devoid of the fruit of righteousness (or love) is a dead faith.

Again, the distinction of sola fide centers on the "root" of justifcation (namely, grace alone through faith alone). But the "fruit" of justification (which will always be subsequently present in the lives of those who have been justified) is the fruit of the Spirit, of which agape is the foremost (Gal. 5:22).

Read all the comments here.

It reminded me of a question that came up during our last Wednesday's Bible study, "Does a Christian choose to love God, or can he choose not to?" In other words, do believers have a choice in this area, or do we have no free will here? And I think the answer is somewhat the same as a Protestant would have for a Roman Catholic regarding justification and works.

When we are born again, becoming a new creation in Christ, God takes our heart of stone and gives us one of flesh. We are given a new heart, we become a new person, and our new heart will love God. Period. That it won't, is not an option. It's not a matter of choice, it's just a matter of what our new heart does. Our new heart is made to love Him. Love is the first fruit of the Spirit.

Is that fair, that God would bring us into a position where we have no choice but to love Him? Well, the question is completely hypothetical, a sort of, 'can God make a square circle' kind of thing. Because who of us whom God has called to be His children would want it any other way. And as with love, good works wil necessarily follow true justification.

Is it fair? Does it deprive us of choice? Well, if we think about our new birth, we might consider; how much choice did we have about our first birth? None at all, did we?

Take Care
H/T The Shepherd's Fellowship

Friday, 11 September 2009

Condoms, Contraception, Abortion "Cheapest Way to Combat Climate Change"

So says a report from the famous London School of Economics.
The term "emitters" in the report, titled, "Fewer Emitters, Lower Emissions, Less Cost," refers to human beings. Roger Martin, chairman of the Optimum Population Trust at the LSE, said, "It's always been obvious that total emissions depend on the number of emitters as well as their individual emissions - the carbon tonnage can't shoot down as we want, while the population keeps shooting up."

It might seem that the only honourable and unhypocritical thing to do for the authors and supporters of such a report is to become like human lemmings and march en masse over the nearest cliff into the nearest sea. ;)

But then Telegraph columnist Gerald Warner enters the discussion as a voice of reason...
Warner commented,... "Having generated highly profitable mass hysteria and sidelined honest scientists who point out that the Arctic ice-cap is growing, not shrinking; that the polar bear population is increasing, not dwindling; and that the total human contribution to atmospheric CO2 is miniscule, making adjustments in its size irrelevant, the warming fanatics are learning the joys of coercion."
The equation of "overpopulation" with increased "carbon emissions" and therefore man-made "climate change," is heavily contended within the scientific community, with many denouncing it as ideologically inspired junk science. (emphasis mine, JK)

I have long thought it a sign of a certain human arrogance to think it is in our power to solve any problem we encounter, even one as large as this one of 'global warming' is popularly seen to be. It is the attitude that we are the highest power in the universe and it is not only within our power and capability, it is our duty to attack and solve every and all issues that we perceive to endanger not just our survival but even our comfort, our convenience or our desire.

Take Care

Sunday, 6 September 2009

Push On

It has been a while since I have blogged, but a number of items and thoughts came together and I woke up this morning thinking of this Pete Seeger song. What brought it to mind?

Well, this...

Where the ELCA at their convention in Minneapolis, when a tornado that blew the cross off the steeple of their church across the street, might have paused to consider whether or not they should proceed with their sexual agenda, choosing the broad road over the narrow one, went ahead, pushed on, and chose the broad one anyway.

Then there was This story in the Anglican Journal (Hat tip to my blogging friend, David)
Let’s change gears and move forward...
Agree to disagree and move on, a twenty-something youth representative from the Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund (PWRDF) board of directors suggested recently. Continue the discussion but don’t let it get in the way of moving forward, he advised.
...while we’ve been driving back and forth on the same old issues, the ranks of Anglicans in the pews have plummeted to an all-time low.

To which I commented,
It’s not the “back and forth” that’s been causing the plummeting attendance. It’s the “forth” into apostasy on the part of the church in general.

So, for Fred Hiltz, the liberal bishops of Niagara, Huron, Ottawa etc, TEC, the ECLA, and all others who think that they are honouring God by continuing to march away from Him and deeper into the morass of a false cultural relevance...

Push on.

Take Care