Monthly Archives: February 2010

Islamic Terrorists Vs. Radical Christians: New Game. New Rules. (Part 13)

An Updated Rerun 2009 Series

Click on the following for earlier articles: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11 and Part 12.

How to be a Radical Christian (viii).

But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you. (Matthew 5:44)

One of the divine ironies of the New Testament is that we Christians are called to love our enemies.

So, on the one hand, America must fight the Islamic Terrorists with everything our armed forces can possibly muster up in order to protect innocent people in our nation and in other nations. It’s either fight or be slaughtered. The latter is not a viable option.

But at the same time, believers are called to love our enemies and pray for them. How can this be accomplished, right?

He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord. (Luke 1:17)

If you’re old enough, maybe you remember the hunger strikes in Belfast, Ireland, during the 1980’s. That was when numerous IRA prisoners at the  British Maze prison made demands of the British government, and then went on hunger strikes until their demands were met.

Margaret Thatcher was the Prime Minister who was not a weak-kneed leader. She refused to negotiate. The results were that ten young men starved. Many more were prepared to die, but then a miracle happened.

Parents of the remaining prisoners stepped in and had their sons hooked up to life support systems without their sons’ permissions. These parents loved their children too much to watch them slowly die. The hunger strikes ended.

Consider all the years of nurturing and teaching which back up a parent’s love for a child. This love is like a tsunami force just waiting to be unleashed against supposedly insurmountable barriers. It matters not whether it’s a Western culture or a Middle Eastern one, children want to please their parents.

So, we Radical Christians need to pray and fast for the spirit of Elijah to come upon the parents of Islamic terrorists so that these parents love their children enough to dissuade them from any suicidal ventures.

Love never fails…(1 Corinthians 13:8)

(Conclusion)

A new rerun updated series beginning on Tuesday.

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The Death of Christianity’s Influence on Politics in America (Part 3)

Click on following links for earlier articles: Part 1 and Part 2.

Fast-forward twenty-seven years from my senior year in college to the summer of 1995. No longer was I an agnostic who had all the answers. But instead, I was now a seeker who needed answers from the Lord.

As I paced around the living room, softly praying and asking the Lord for His help in my financial needs, He dropped a bombshell on me.

“You don’t like America,” whispered a gentle voice to my heart.

I stopped in my tracks. “What?” I spoke aloud.

No sooner was the word out of my mouth, I had a vision. In it, I saw the anti-war rallies of the 1960’s, the books concerning the Vietnam War and America’s many mistakes in fighting it, President Nixon’s Watergate problems and all of my judgmental attitudes toward America and its leaders.

“How can you minister for Me to a nation you dislike?” whispered the gentle voice to my heart.

I fell on the floor and wept. How could I argue with the Truth? I did not like America!

“Lord, I’m sorry. Forgive me,” I cried. Then I added, “Lord, give me a love for America.”

And just like that, I loved America. Yes, it’s an imperfect nation. Yes, it has imperfect leaders. Yes, it has made many mistakes. But I love America; and so does Jesus.

From that day forward, this revelation reverberates within me: If you are going to give strong prophetic words to a person or a group or a region or a nation, check yourself first. Make sure you love them. And then, make sure you’re willing to identify with them and to suffer their penalties for them. This is what Jesus did for us at the cross and we are to be just like Him.

Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air; but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified. (1 Corinthians 9:26-27)

My journey in politics from one deep ditch along the side of the road to the ditch on the opposite side of the road is much like Christianity’s problems with politics.

(Continued in Part 4)

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Islamic Terrorists Vs. Radical Christians: New Game. New Rules. (Part 12)

An Updated Rerun 2009 Series

Click on the following for earlier articles: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10 and Part 11.

How to be a Radical Christian (vii).

Blessed is he who considers the poor; the Lord will deliver him in a time of trouble. The Lord will preserve him and keep him alive, and he will be blessed on the earth. You [the Lord] will not deliver him to the will of his enemies. The Lord will strengthen him on his bed of illness; You [the Lord] will sustain him on his sickbed. (Psalm 41:1-3)

Looking at the Bible, the #1 way to be be blessed for giving financial gifts is to obey the voice of the Lord. If the Lord tells you to give to a person or a place a financial offering, then do it. He will bless you for your obedience.

The #2 way is probably different than what you have been taught.

If you believe you are automatically blessed for giving tithes and offerings to a church or a ministry, you’re wrong. There are no New Testament scriptures which endorse this theology. None at all. All of the scriptures which back up this teaching are in the Old Testament and refer to giving to the Temple or the Temple’s storehouse, and not to a New Testament church.

But instead, all through the Bible, there are countless numbers of scriptures which promise a blessing for giving to the poor.

If I bestow all my goods to feed the poor…and do it in love, I will profit from this action. (1 Corinthians 13:3, written in a positive sense)

Sell what you have and give alms; provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a treasure in heaven that does not fail, where no thief approaches nor moth destroys. (Luke 12:33)

And when he [Cornelius] observed him [the angel], he was afraid and said, “What is it, lord?” So he [the angel] said to him, “Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God.” (Acts 10:4)

He who has pity on the poor lends to the Lord, and He will pay back what he has given. (Proverbs 19:17)

Radical Christians will give radical-sized gifts to the poor.  They will do this in love and without calling attention to their deeds. These unselfish acts will provide a measure of protection for themselves, their families, and their neighbors.

(Continued in Part 13)

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The Death of Christianity’s Influence on Politics in America (Part 2)

Click on following for earlier article: Part 1.

On November 3, 1964, President Lyndon Johnson crushed Republican Candidate, Senator Barry Goldwater, in a landslide which has not been duplicated by the Dems since then.

As for me, a college freshman at the University of Illinois, the presidential election seemed a million miles away. Classes. Fraternity. Beer. Marlboro Cigarettes. And other aspects of college life were far more important to me than politics.

And Vietnam? There were only 12,000 military advisors in South Vietnam on the day when Johnson was elected. So, this little conflict was not on anyone’s radar screen at the time.

But all of this changed during the summer vacation following my freshman year when President Johnson announced:

I have today ordered to Vietnam the Air Mobile Division and certain other forces which will raise our fighting strength from 75,000 to 125,000 men almost immediately. Additional forces will be needed later, and they will be sent as requested. This will make it necessary to increase our active fighting forces by raising the monthly draft call from 17,000 over a period of time to 35,000 per month, and for us to step up our campaign for voluntary enlistments. (July 28, 1965, at a press conference)

From this date forward, the Vietnam War became a big deal to America and me. Walter Cronkite (CBS), Peter Jennings (ABC), Chet Huntley and David Brinkley (NBC) fed the brutal realities of war to us through their nightly broadcasts. Viet Cong, Hanoi Hilton, Ho Chi Minh Trail, napalm and Anti-War marches became a part of the war lexicon.

Now, like most fellow students, I had a valuable Get Out of Jail Free card called a 2-S Draft Deferment. This deferment allowed me to delay my military obligation until I finished college.

So, for my sophomore and junior years, the Vietnam War loomed as an after-graduation problem, not an immediate one. And maybe the war would be over by June, 1968, right?

Then, Senator Eugene McCarthy, a Democrat from Wisconsin, rocked the political world on November 30, 1967, by announcing his intention to campaign for the 1968 Democratic Party’s presidential nomination as an anti-Vietnam War candidate. Political skeptics pooh poohed him, but students, like me,  flocked to his side.

In the New Hampshire Primary (March 12, 1968), President Johnson limped to victory with 49% of the Democratic vote, but McCarty was right on his tail with 42%.  In the following three weeks, Senator Robert Kennedy entered the presidential campaign, President Johnson dropped out of the heated race and Senator McCarthy won the Wisconsin primary.

All of this was exhilarating to me. I became a liberal Democrat until my salvation on May 20, 1985. Senator George McGovern (1972) and Governor Jimmy Carter (1976, 1980) were some of my later presidential choices.

Tom Brokaw described the adults involved with WWII as the Greatest Generation. The war’s aftereffects were unity, love for America and a determination to build up our nation. One generation later, the Greatest Generation‘s children fought the Vietnam War with the resulting aftereffects being division, hatred of our nation’s values and determination to tear America’s moral fabric to pieces.

And while this was happening, the Church wavered from one side of the path to the other, not sure which side was the right one.

(Continued in Part 3)

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Islamic Terrorists Vs. Radical Christians: New Game. New Rules. (Part 11)

An Updated Rerun 2009 Series

Click on the following for earlier articles: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9 and Part 10.

How to be a Radical Christian (vi).

And the evil spirit answered and said, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?” (Acts 19:15)

In order to have authority over demonic forces in spiritual warfare, a believer must be known in two places: heaven and hell.

Being known in heaven comes at salvation with being a new creation. This is an act of grace by our Lord and has nothing to do with individual struggles or works on our parts. We are bought with a price and are then citizens of heaven.

On the other hand, being known in hell comes out of struggles, and then, eventual victories  over demonic forces which have influenced and controlled us believers in various areas of our lives. The amount of authority we have will be directly proportional to the number of victories we have in our personal lives. Few or no victories will result in very little authority for us.

For instance, I knew a man who was part of a prayer group in a major Midwestern city. The prayer group began interceding against prostitution in his neighborhood and against the unclean spirits controlling the activity. But the man failed to mention to the group that he himself had a long standing problem with lust.

After a few days of prayer and fasting, prostitutes began knocking on his door day and night, offering their services to him free of charge. It almost drove him over the edge. He was forced to withdraw from the prayer group.

In Part 5, I stated that a religious spirit empowers and guides the Islamic Terrorists. And the only way to overcome this particular religious spirit is for a bunch of Radical Christians to somehow get free from the control of the religious principality which rules over our nation.

So, how do we get free from the religious principality’s control?

Most of us Christians will have to come out of our present churches in order to accomplish this feat. Next, we will have to go through wilderness experiences like Jesus did in His forty day fast and defeat Satan’s hold on our lives.

Then, if we survive these tough ordeals, we will be prepared for battle.

And Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about Him spread through all the surrounding district. (Luke 4:14)

(Continued in Part 12)

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The Death of Christianity’s Influence on Politics in America (Part 1)

Like most youths,  my parents greatly influenced my early political inclinations.

Both were great examples of citizens who understood the importance of the ballot for the survival of our democracy. It mattered not to them whether it was a school board seat, township commissioner post or a county sheriff run-off, they showed up at the polls and cast their votes.

Once, I asked Dad, “When all is said and done, how do you decide which  political candidate to vote for?”

“I always vote for the best man,  based on the issues, and not on his party affiliation,” Dad said in a matter of fact tone of voice.

Sounds like good voting sense, huh? Then, I slowly edged out onto thin ice and asked a follow-up question.

“Dad, have you ever voted for a single Democratic candidate in your whole life?” I asked.

“No, I haven’t,” Dad replied with a wink of his eye. “Sadly, the Democrats are always wrong when I check them out, and the Republicans are always right.”

So much for objectivity, right?

Well, let’s be gentle to my parents who still to this day remember President Franklin Delano Roosevelt‘s solutions for the agricultural doldrums of the Great Depression: mandatory destruction of corn fields and slaughtering millions of pigs while thousands of Americans went hungryBuddy, can you spare a dime?

As for myself, I paid scant attention to politics while I was growing up on my parents’ farm during the 1950’s and early 60’s. The Chicago Cubs and New York Yankees were far more important to me. And anyway, have you ever heard recordings of speeches given by President Dwight D. Eisenhower or Senator Everett Dirksen? They were drop-dead, excruciatingly boring!

But still, I  remember a discussion in my senior year history class about the 1964 presidential race between President Lyndon Johnson and the Republican candidate, Senator Barry Goldwater.

Roy Rogers is backing Goldwater for president,” I said in total candor when the teacher asked for my opinion. “So, if Goldwater’s good enough for Roy Rogers, he’s good enough for me.”

With that cheesy political attitude, I headed for the University of Illinois in September, 1964, just two months before the presidential elections.

So, what did many college lads talk about – other than girls and sports – in dorms and fraternity houses? Politics. And how do you think my Roy Rogers’ argument held up in debates about presidential politics?

Not well at all!

You see, in my era, 70% of the students attending the University of Illinois were from the Chicago area. And these kids had parents who had totally different opinions about the Great Depression. They liked FDR. They loved President John F. Kennedy and were inspired by him. Plus, they were feisty, card-carrying Democrats who knew their stuff.

It only took one discussion to discover I was just a hayseed farm boy when it came to politics. So, I learned to listen and read newspapers and magazines.

But something happened in the summer of 1965 which changed, not only my attitudes on politics, but millions of other college students for decades to come.

(Continued in Part 2)

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Islamic Terrorists Vs. Radical Christians: New Game. New Rules. (Part 10)

An Updated Rerun 2009 Series

Click on the following for earlier articles: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8 and Part 9.


How to be a Radical Christian (v).

And it was so, when the Philistine (Goliath) arose and came and drew near to meet David, that David hastened and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. (2 Samuel 17:48)

The Philistine army was on one mountain. Israel was cowering on a mountain opposite the Philistines. A small valley ran between them. The ten-foot tall giant, Goliath, was dressed in bronze armor and was standing in front of the Philistine army, challenging Israel to a duel. He was armed with a sword, spear and javelin. His shield bearer was standing off to his left and slightly in front of him, protecting him from arrows.

There, standing out in front of the Israeli army was a fifteen year-old kid with a sling and five stones.  No armor. No sword. No spear. No javelin. No shield or shield bearer.  He was all alone and could expect no assistance from the nervous Nellies standing behind him wearing Israeli uniforms.

Goliath mocked and cursed David. Then David boasted about the Lord.

The Philistine giant and his shield bearer trudged forward, but what did David do? He didn’t walk. He raced toward his foe; and while he was running, he swung his sling around his head.

What do you think was running through the heads of the the Israeli soldiers as they watched a fifteen year-old kid racing toward the Terminator of that day? Probably something like this: “He’s a nut! He doesn’t have a chance. We are doomed!”

And yet not one of the Israeli soldiers, including King Saul or David’s older brothers, had the courage to take David’s place. So, they stood in their fears and watched from a distance as David won the battle for them.

David’s running toward Goliath is a perfect illustration of how Radical Christians must help to fight Islamic Terrorists.

“What?” you proclaim.

Not too many years ago, a well-known prophet prophesied what he saw was going to happen in California: death and destruction. He advised all Christians to move to safer states. Maybe, Montana, Utah or Idaho. Anywhere, but leave California as quickly as possible.

Sadly, I agree with his prophetic vision about death and destruction in California and on the West Coast. But I disagree with his advice that we Christians should abandon ship and run for safety.

When the bombs begin exploding (and they soon will), we Radical Christians must be set in place to be the Body of Christ, willing to reach out and help hurting people, and then to offer hope to people who will have none.

This could be one of the American church’s finest hours.

(Continued in Part 11)

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