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  • Samuel at Gilgal

    This year I will be sharing brief excerpts from the articles, sermons, and books I am currently reading. My posts will not follow a regular schedule but will be published as I find well-written thoughts that should be of interest to maturing Christian readers. Whenever possible, I encourage you to go to the source and read the complete work of the author.

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Government Growth And The Economy

Quoting Brian M. Riedl:

In a throwback to the 1930s and 1970s, Demo­cratic lawmakers are betting that America’s economic ills can be cured by an extraordinary expansion of government. This tired approach has already failed repeatedly in the past year, in which Congress and the President:

1. Increased total federal spending by 11 percent to nearly $3 trillion;

2. Enacted $333 billion in “emergency” spending;

3. Enacted $105 billion in tax rebates; and

4. Pushed the budget deficit to $455 billion in the name of “stimulus.”

Every one of these policies failed to increase eco­nomic growth. Now, in addition to passing a $700 bil­lion financial sector rescue package, lawmakers have decided to double down on these failed spending pol­icies by proposing a $300 billion economic stimulus bill. Even though the last $455 billion in Keynesian deficit spending failed to help the economy, lawmak­ers seem to have convinced themselves that the next $300 billion will succeed.

This is not the first time government expansions have failed to produce economic growth. Massive spending hikes in the 1930s, 1960s, and 1970s all failed to increase economic growth rates. Yet in the 1980s and 1990s-when the federal government shrank by one-fifth as a percentage of gross domestic product (GDP)-the U.S. economy enjoyed its great­est expansion to date.

Advent Prayer

“Jesus said to his disciples: ‘Be constantly on the watch! Stay awake!…You do not know when the Master of the house is coming.'” (Mark. 13:33)

O Jesus, your voice sounds through the house of my world: Be on your guard! Stay awake!

Yet I hardly hear you. Busy with so much, I go about the things I do like a servant trapped in household routine, hardly giving a thought to what my life is about. My spirit within has grown tired and you, my God, seem far away. How can I hear your voice today?

Speak to my heart during this season of grace, as you spoke to your prophets and saints. Remind me again of the journey you call me to make and the work you would have me do. I am your servant, O Lord. Speak to me in this holy season and turn my eyes to watch for your coming.

O Emmanuel, Jesus Christ, desire of every nation, Savior of all peoples, come and dwell among us. (Anonymous)

Has FOX News Caved To Political Correctness?

FOX NEWS LOGO

FOX NEWS LOGO

The selective stupidity of political correctness seems to have infected the FOX News network. Example: “America’s Pulse” anchor E.D. Hill did a body-language segment on the Obama gesture on June 6th. The tease was how people are interpreting the fist gesture between Obama and his wife – “A fist bump? A pound? A terrorist fist jab?”

Secular progressives had a “hissy-fit” over the “terrorist fist jab” description. Media Matters launched a petition drive demanding an apology from Hill and Hill apologized saying, that she had mentioned “various ways in which the Obamas’ fist-bump in St. Paul had been characterized in the media” and she had not intended to characterize it inappropriately.

America’s Pulse anchored by E.D. Hill was then canceled by FOX News and it was later announced that Hill’s contract with Fox would not be renewed. Too bad, but there is more to this.

Atlas Shrugs notes that in 2005 the Saudis purchased 6% of FOX News. When the French riots of 2005 occurred, FOX newscasters stopped calling the Muslim rioters Muslims. Why? According to Prince al-Walid, “I picked up the phone and called Murdoch … [and told him] these are not Muslim riots, these are riots out of poverty. Within 30 minutes, the title was changed from Muslim riots to civil riots.”

Another disturbing shift: Columnists Rush & Malloy of the New York Daily News have written that FOX has told its hosts that they must cease criticism of Obama for the near future. Roger Ailes, the Fox News boss, told prime-time hosts Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, and Greta Van Susteren they are to back off of criticism of Obama for the near future.

Some speculate that the FOX News Corporation expects to be a target of vindictive actions by the Obama administration. The secular progressives will always hate FOX, however, so why the brown nose?

The Carl Cameron now widely-discredited hit piece against Sarah Palin has left Fox fans particularly perplexed. It led to a huge backlash in favor of the Alaskan governor. So is FOX News going to spend the next four years tip-toeing around the secular progressive agenda? If so, its ratings will collapse.

Come Out From Among Them

From: The Desk of Charles Spurgeon

“Only ye shall not go very far away.” Exodus 8:28 – This is a crafty word from the lip of the arch-tyrant Pharaoh. If the poor bondaged Israelites must needs go out of Egypt, then he bargains with them that it shall not be very far away; not too far for them to escape the terror of his arms, and the observation of his spies. After the same fashion, the world loves not the non-conformity of nonconformity, or the dissidence of dissent, it would have us be more charitable and not carry matters with too severe a hand.

Death to the world, and burial with Christ, are experiences which carnal minds treat with ridicule, and hence the ordinance which sets them forth is almost universally neglected, and even condemned. Worldly wisdom recommends the path of compromise, and talks of “moderation.” According to this carnal policy, purity is admitted to be very desirable, but we are warned against being too precise; truth is of course to be followed, but error is not to be severely denounced. “Yes,” says the world, “be spiritually minded by all means, but do not deny yourself a little enjoyment in society, an occasional ball, and a Christmas visit to a theatre. What’s the good of crying down a thing when it is so fashionable, and everybody does it?” Multitudes of professing-believers yield to this cunning advice, to their own eternal ruin.

If we would follow the Lord wholly, we must go right away into the wilderness of separation, and leave the Egypt of the carnal world behind us. We must leave its maxims, its pleasures, and its religion too, and go far away to the place where the Lord calls his sanctified ones. When the town is on fire, our house cannot be too far from the flames. When the plague is abroad, a man cannot be too far from its haunts. The further from a viper the better, and the further from worldly conformity the better. To all true believers let the trumpet-call be sounded, “Come ye out from among them, be ye separate.” (Morning and Evening – June 27 Devotional)

Turning The Corner On Race

From: The Desk of Gary Bauer

The election of America’s first black president represents many things. It represents a feeling of national atonement after hundreds of years of racial discrimination. It represents a clear benchmark in our nation’s quest to move beyond race in our politics.

Barack Obama’s election should also signal something to all those who have made race baiting their raison de ‘etre: dust of your résumés — it’s time to find new work.

That includes Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, whose race baiting has done a disservice to the black community by turning every grievance into yet more evidence of America’s endemic racism.

It also includes the political Left and its media allies, who have made a living off identity politics. The Left’s knee-jerk reaction to any political issue in which race, gender or ethnicity are even remotely involved is immediately to split the two sides, pitting one against the other. Then they watch as substantive debates over policy degenerate into bitter and often superficial feuds over identity.

When race and politics mingle, the Left-wing media know they can generate big ratings simply by confusing correlation (conservative opposition to a black candidate) with causation (conservative opposition to a black candidate because he’s black). Television and radio are the perfect formats to showcase the media’s feigned confusion. . . .

The Left and its media allies desperately wanted to make racism a major component in [the November 4th] election. But the exit polling told a different story.

Eighty percent of voters said race was “not a factor” in their choice for president. Interestingly, Obama beat McCain among the 20 percent of voters who said race was either a “minor factor,” “important factor” or the “most important factor” in their decision. This suggests that race may have been a net benefit to Obama.

The liberal media need to come to terms with the fact that America has turned a sharp corner on race. Once they do, with less time to devote to identity politics, perhaps they will find more time to do their job — to report real news and evaluate political candidates on their ideas and records.

Read the entire article here. . . .

Political Correctness: It Is Wrong To Point Out What Is Wrong

sheriff-politicalcorrectionPolitical correctness is a strategy used by secular progressives to silence opposition to ideas that are intellectually indefensible. Political correctness is only the pretense of tolerance, because it is limited to its own narrow-minded bias. There can be no free exchange of ideas where political correctness dominates the social norm. It is a Machiavellian tactic used even by the media to limit free speech. A.W.R. Hawkins speaks directly to the problem with political correctness:

Political correctness is a façade constructed in opposition to reality and sold as “tolerance.” Because of this, its purveyors are given to moral relevance and all who reject it are branded as “intolerant.” When properly implemented, it stifles our ability to think clearly.

Perhaps nothing epitomized this better than Reuters’ post 9/11 refusal to use the word “terrorist” in reporting the news of terrorists blowing up buildings, themselves, and others in acts of terror. Steven Jukes, Reuters global head of news, defended the refusal thus: “We all know that one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter and that Reuters upholds the principle that we do not use the word ‘terrorist.’ To be frank, it adds little to call the attack on the World Trade Center a terrorist attack.”

I have just one question here: If we can’t speak the truth about terrorists determined to destroy our children, our culture and ourselves, when can we speak truth? (The politically correct response here is “what is truth?”)

We must understand that a major tenet of political correctness is that there is nothing more wrong than the act of pointing out what is wrong. Political correctness is understandably hostile to facts and its followers quite intolerant of anyone who refuses to budge on the fact that absolutes exist; for the rejection of absolutes is a most convenient way to open discussions about “the non-existence of God” in university classrooms throughout the country.

Continue reading A.W.R. Hawkins here. . . .

Charles Carroll: “The Mercy Of My Redeemer”

Charles Carroll

Charles Carroll

“On the mercy of my Redeemer I rely for salvation and on His merits, not on the works I have done in obedience to His precepts.

“Grateful to Almighty God for the blessings which, through Jesus Christ Our Lord, He had conferred on my beloved country in her emancipation and on myself in permitting me, under circumstances of mercy, to live to the age of 89 years, and to survive the fiftieth year of independence, adopted by Congress on the 4th of July 1776, which I originally subscribed on the 2d day of August of the same year and of which I am now the last surviving signer.” (Signer of The Declaration of Independence)

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