• 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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The Government And Your Money

From: The Desk of Brian M. Riedl

Government cannot create new purchasing power out of thin air. If Congress funds new spend­ing with taxes, it is simply redistributing existing income. If Congress instead borrows the money from domestic investors, those investors will have that much less to invest or to spend in the private economy. If Congress borrows the money from foreigners, the balance of payments will adjust by equally reducing net exports, leaving GDP unchanged. Every dollar Congress spends must first come from somewhere else.

This does not mean that government spending has no economic impact at all. Government spending often alters the consumption of total demand, such as increasing consumption at the expense of investment.

More importantly, government spending can alter future economic growth. Economic growth results from producing more goods and services (not from redistributing existing income), and that requires productivity growth and growth in the labor supply. A government’s impact on economic growth is, therefore, determined by its policies’ effect on labor productivity and labor supply.

The Holy Spirit Gives Sight

The Spirit reveals the Savior to our souls in a manner that renders Him exceedingly precious in our estimation. He shows us….

His excellence; the perfections of His divine nature, as the brightness of the Father’s glory;
His power, as the Creator of all things;
His wisdom;
His immutability;
His eternity.

(David Harsha, “The Savior’s Ascension”)

The Shakedown Of eHarmony

eharmonyThe Patriot Post reports:

The Christian-targeted dating Web site eHarmony recently succumbed to a shakedown by a disgruntled New Jersey homosexual who decided that matchmaking sites geared to his preferences were not sufficient. The man filed suit in 2005 with the New Jersey Division on Civil Rights. eHarmony fought the suit for three years before finally giving up and settling out of court. The company agreed to offer same-sex dating services on its site, as well as free subscriptions to 10,000 homosexual users, $5,000 for the plaintiff and $50,000 to New Jersey’s Civil Rights division. Beyond that, eHarmony will advertise using same-sex couples and revise their anti-discrimination policy to include “sexual orientation.”

Blogger Michelle Malkin notes, “Neil Warren, eHarmony’s founder, is a gentle, grandfatherly businessman who launched his popular dating site to support heterosexual marriage. A ‘Focus on the Family’ author with a divinity degree, Warren encourages healthy, lasting unions between men and women of all faiths, mixed faiths or no faith at all.” Unfortunately, this wasn’t acceptable for one man suffering from gender-disorientation pathology. Now, eHarmony and all its customers are worse for it.

The Bible Of The Revolution

flagrevolution1aitkenbiblePrior to the American Revolution, the only English Bibles in the colonies were imported either from Europe or England. Publication of the Bible was regulated by the British government, and required a special license. Robert Aitken’s Bible was the first known English-language Bible to be printed in America, and also the only Bible to receive Congressional approval. Aitken’s Bible, sometimes referred to as “The Bible of the Revolution,” is one of the rarest books in the world, with few copies still in existence today.

“Prop. 8 – The Musical” Reveals Hatred For Christianity

Jack Black (actor) is responsible for the production of a video called “Prop. 8 -The Musical.” It portrays Christ as approving homosexuality and accusing Christians of picking and choosing the Bible verses they want to believe. The video blatantly distorts Scripture. It has an all-star cast of Hollywood celebrities who seem determined to use ridicule to trivialize Christianity. The video is a successful portrayal of hate, but not in the way Black intended. By demeaning Christians and Christianity these actors have revealed the contents of their own hearts.

No Pardon For Unjust Sentence Of Compean And Ramos

freeborderagentsApparently some in the Bush Administration believe drug dealers, tax evaders and bank embezzlers are deserving of pardons, but former Border Patrol Agents Jose Compean and Ignacio Ramos – serving a combined 23 years for what Congressman Tom Tancredo described as “doing their jobs” – don’t even deserve the time of day!

President Bush recently issued 14 pardons and two sentence commutations. Among those issued pardons and commutations were bank embezzlers, tax evaders and a rapper, John E. Forte, who was convicted of aiding and abetting possession with intent to distribute cocaine.

Agents Compean and Ramos were not on the list. Such egregious neglect prompted Congressman Dana Rohrabacher to say:

“The fact that the president has neglected to free these men from their imprisonment while freeing drug dealers, embezzlers and other criminals is insulting to the American people. For the sake of justice, let’s hope this is not the last round of pardons and commutations.”

According to Phyllis Schlafly’s Eagle Forum:

“The end of President Bush’s final term is quickly approaching. Less than two months remain until he will hand over his White House keys to Barack Obama, but we cannot let him leave office without resolving one very important issue: he must commute the prison sentences of convicted U.S. Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean!”

The date was February 17, 2005. Two U.S. Border Patrol agents were doing their duty patrolling El Paso County, Texas’ violent border with Mexico. Both men were experienced agents; Ignacio Ramos was a 10-year veteran and a former nominee for “Agent of the Year”. Jose Alonso Compean had served for five years and is a Navy veteran.

About midday, the two agents spotted a known drug smuggler, Osvaldo Aldrete-Davila, and attempted to stop him and check his vehicle. Aldrete-Davila ran from his vehicle toward the Mexican border. The agents pursued him on foot. According to Ramos and Compean, Aldreta-Davila turned pointing at them with something shiny in his hand. It was very reasonable to assume that a known drug dealer, who was illegally crossing into our country, was about to shoot at the two agents. They fired 15 rounds at the smuggler at intervals, but were unable to capture him before he crossed back into Mexico.

Border Patrol supervisors and 12 other agents came to the scene. Since their supervisors and fellow agents were all familiar with the incident, Ramos and Compean did not file a report on the shooting because they assumed the smuggler had not been injured and filing a written report is not a department requirement in such an incident. The drug smuggler’s abandoned vehicle contained 743 pounds of marijuana.
A couple of weeks later, Aldrete-Davila’s mother complained to a friend in the U.S. that her son had been shot. A Department of Homeland Security investigator contacted Aldrete-Davila and verified that he had been shot in the rear end. The investigator contacted Johnny Sutton, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Texas, who was appointed to his current U.S. Attorney post by President Bush.

Sutton decided that the agents had violated the rules which require an officer to believe he is subject to the threat of deadly force before using deadly force. Sutton then granted Aldrete-Davila a “humanitarian visa” and immunity from the drug-smuggling charge if he would return to the U.S. and testify against Ramos and Compean. Sutton then filed criminal charges against the agents for assault with a deadly weapon, inflicting serious bodily injury and violating Aldrete-Davila’s civil rights.

When Aldrete-Davila accepted Sutton’s offer and returned to the U.S., he received medical treatment at taxpayer expense from the William Beaumont Army Hospital in El Paso. Aldrete-Davila then, using his “humanitarian visa” to cross the border, was caught twice smuggling almost a ton of drugs. (This was not reported during the trial.)

The jury was told that Aldrete-Davila had never smuggled drugs before. The jury was told he was trying to raise $2000 for surgery his mother needed, and he didn’t even know what he was transporting. The prosecution knew this was a lie. The prosecution did not mention that he had been caught smuggling drugs two more times before the trial and did not share this information with the defense attorneys. Sutton secured convictions against Ramos and Compean based on Aldrete-Davila’s claim that he was unarmed (and his sterling reputation, of course). Ramos and Compean were sentenced to 11 and 12 years in prison, respectively. Both men are married and have three children, each. Meanwhile, Aldrete-Davila filed a $5-million lawsuit against the U.S. government for violating his civil rights.
Representatives Duncan Hunter and Dana Rohrabacher, among others, have defended the agents and called on President Bush to commute the sentences.

Senate Republicans and Democrats did respond to this injustice by holding hearings on the case. After the hearings, the President was called on to commute the agents’ sentences.

The Bush administration continues to do nothing for the two Hispanic law enforcement agents. Osvaldo Aldrete-Davila was finally sentenced to nine years in prison. He will do less time than either Border Patrol agent. This has all the appearance of someone trying to make a political statement at the expense of Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean’s lives. These men are guilty of nothing but doing their duty to defend our country from Mexican drug smugglers.

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” (Edmund Burke)

I urge you to email President Bush and respectfully ask him to pardon Ramos and Compean at this web site.

The University That Stole Christmas

nochristmastree1Bah! Humbug! The home of one of my favorite university basketball teams has always leaned left of center – way to the left – but now it has gone too far. There’s to be no more mistletoe for Tar Heel students. Mike Adams explains in his article, “Deck the Heels With Boughs of Holly”:

The anti-Christmas lunacy that has been sweeping the nation has made its latest stop in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Wilson and Davis libraries at UNC-Chapel Hill have for years been adorned with Christmas trees. But thanks to the associate provost of university libraries, Sarah Michalak, that tradition is about to be broken – you guessed it, all in the name of tolerance. Who was it that said the provost of university libraries doesn’t do important things!?

Michalak is claiming that her decision is based on several years’ worth of complaints made by people who were offended by the Christmas display. In other words, the Christophobic bigots that have made UNC-CH their home have pestered Michalak into removing the tree. They made life just hard enough for her to capitulate and order the removal of a simple Christmas tree.

Continue reading. . . .

Should A Christian Put Up A Christmas Tree?

christmas-treeQuoting Gary DeMar:

Have you ever met a Christian who refused to display a Christmas tree in his house because he believed it to be a pagan tradition? I have. The use of the trees does have pagan roots, but Gary DeMar shares with us here why it is OK to display them:

Just because pagans might have used trees to worship their gods does not mean that we can’t use them to teach us something about God who has given us the “indescribable gift” of Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 9:15). The Christmas tree is an evergreen that reminds us that we have “eternal life” in Jesus Christ (John 6:40). The shape of the tree reminds us that we are “born from above” (John 3:3). The needles on the branches remind us that Jesus was “pierced through for our transgression” (Isa. 53:5). The lights hung on the tree remind us that Jesus is “the light of the world” (John 8:12) and through Him we are to be “the light of the world” (Matt. 5:14). The objects we hang on the tree remind us that “every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow” (James 1:17).

Instead of condemning the setting up of the Christmas tree as some practice brought into our homes from the pagan cold, it should remind us that God promises us “the right to the tree of life” (Rev. 22:14). If the Bible tells us “to go to the ant . . . to observe her ways and be wise” (Proverbs 6:6), certainly we can learn similar things from God’s other good creations, even trees.

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