Wednesday, January 31, 2007

I Think This is Funny

Q: What do you get if you cross a Jehovah's Witness with a Unitarian?
A: Somebody who knocks on your door but has no idea why.

(Thanks to "Mr. Right"--commentor on Mike S. Adams column today on Townhall)

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

This Bud's For You, Brother!

The recently revamped Slice of Laodicea website, now known as Christian Research Network pointed me to the following tibbit of "news":

Theology at the Bottleworks is run by a wildly successful congregation of young St. Louisans called The Journey. The Schlafly [Schlafly Bottleworks in Maplewood, MO] program is part of the church's outreach ministry. And it works.

Every month dozens show up at the brewpub to drink beer and talk about issues ranging from racism in St. Louis to modern art controversies to the debate about embryonic stem cell research. First-timers are invited to check out the church on Sunday, and Journey leaders say many have. Theology at the Bottleworks is just one of The Journey's ministries, but it has helped the church grow from 30 members in late 2002 to 1,300 today...

The Journey is part of what sociologists of religion call the emerging church movement.

(Read the whole story here.)
Boy, I could go all sorts of directions here, but I'll just focus on few.
  • I don't claim to be an expert on the "emerging church," but everything I've read causes me to think--"you're not the boss of me"--everytime I see the term. I want to gag every time I see one of these groups talk about being "relevant" or "cutting edge", blah, blah, blah. Like they've discovered something NEW or they've got a better handle on what people need. It's just Purpose-Driven Church with a different book cover.
  • Looking on The Journey's website, I notice they've got a link to the "Super Bowl." Seems the Journey folks are cancelling church services so people can get together at one of four locations and enjoy "your own beverage" (wonder what that would be), pizza and hot wings. Here's the link.

OK. I love this one. Seems Hillary Clinton is in the middle of a town hall meeting in Iowa this past Sunday, and an individual in the audience asks: "what she had in her background that would make her a good commander-in-chief, given that the world has 'evil' leaders and a lot of them 'happen to be men.'" Her response?
Clinton rephrased the question for the audience because most did not hear what the man said. "The question really is," she said, "we face a lot of dangers in the world, and in the gentleman's words, we face a lot of 'evil men.'

"People like Osama bin Laden comes to mind."

She paused.

"And what in my background equips me to deal" --Clinton waited a beat and got a gleam in her eyes -- "with evil and bad men?"


It took about 30 seconds for the crowd to stop guffawing.
The Chicago-Sun Times article goes on: "Clinton may have unwittingly said something people thought was about her storied marriage to Bill Clinton. The New York senator offered conflicting explanations about her intended target at the news conference. Her warmth turned chilly when a reporter said the audience may have thought the "evil man" was about the "bad side of Bill.''

"I don't think anybody in there really thought that," she said.

Yeah, RIGHT!!!

Saturday, January 27, 2007

I'm No Better Than They Are

We've been studying the OT books of Ezra and Nehemiah in Sunday School the past two months; tomorrow is our last study before moving on to the book of Esther. I was talking with one of our pastors last night about something I found very intersting.

Ezra came to Jerusalem around 458 BC and upon arriving, discovered that the Jews there had taken foreign wives from among the nations living around them. This was in direct violation of God's Law given to them through Moses. (cf Deuteronomy 23:3-6) Calling the Jewish leaders together, Ezra pointed out the violation and encouraged them to "make a covenant with our God to put away all the wives and their children" (Ezra 10:3) according to the Law--which they did.

This was not a racially motivated decision; the Moabites and Ammonites were not worshipers of the One, True God. Consequently, because of the intermarrying, many of the Israelites had been led astray in their worship of Jehovah, the God of Israel. The "fix" was a complete seperation from these people, which it appears the Israelites did.

Fast-forward approximately 25 years. Nehemiah has returned to Jerusalem after serving as governor for 12 years, then returning to Bablyon. Upon arrival, Nehemiah discovers several "lapses in obedience" to the Law, one of which is the intermarrying with foreigners (again)! Ezra's response years before had been one of great distress: When I heard about this matter, I tore my garment and my robe, and pulled some of the hair from my head and my beard, and sat down appalled (Ezra 9:3). Nehemiah, however, responds a little more physically:

I contended with them and cursed them and struck some of them and pulled out their hair, and made them swear by God, "You shall not give your daughters to their sons, nor take of their daughters for your sons or for yourselves. (emphasis mine) --Nehemiah 13:25
In discussing these passages with my pastor, I expressed how I just didn't understand how the Jews could fall right back into sin so quickly. He asked me: "Are there some areas in your life that you have allowed disobedience back in -- just like the Israelites?" I hate to admit it, but I have to answer "yes."

Friday, January 26, 2007

Low Lifes

The Tulsa World recently reported the following story:

Two men were arrested Wednesday on allegations that they stole copper tubing from a Tulsa church. Martin Louis Coleman, 46, and Bobby Ray Mason, 19, both of Tulsa, were arrested about 10:15 a.m. after they allegedly were seen taking copper tubing from three air conditioners at Harvard Avenue United Methodist Church...

A witness apparently saw the two men taking the copper tubing from the air conditioners behind the church and called the police...Officers found the men nearby with a stack of the tubing in front of a house. During a search of the home, police found a large bag containing more copper and black foam from the air conditioners, Walton said.

Both men were arrested on complaints of larceny of copper or cable, illegal possession of copper or cable, and grand larceny. Walton said Mason also was booked into jail on outstanding warrants.

How much of a low life do you have to be to steal from a church? (Not that stealing from anyone is more honorable.)

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Odds and Ends

Parent's Anniversary
It's been several days since I've posted--too much to do in too little time, I guess. My mom and dad's 50th wedding anniversary is tommorrow. That's a long time to be married to the same person, especially in today's world. I know people that can't stay married that many WEEKS!

There won't be a big celebration; my dad is in the hosptial (has been since Christmas day) with a severe infection that has damaged his kidneys and is causing some "memory" problems. (This is on top of the fact that he has Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma- diagnosed in 1997.) He talks about things that happened years ago and makes reference to things he's imagined (he thinks they are real). He's very weak and has to use a walker/wheelchair to get around, which doesn't make him very happy. It's tough on my mom. Say a prayer for them.

Ed Young, Jr
On a different note, found a link on Old Truth to a "sermon" (and I use the term loosely) by Ed Young Jr and his wife, Lisa. According to the website: Ed and Lisa Young talk candidly about what it takes to teach our kids about God’s design for sex. They repeatedly refer to God's desire for us to experience "big sex."

The video opens with a sound clip of A-Ha's (Norwegian band from the mid-80's) "Take on Me." What it has to do with the topic is beyond me, but Ed obviously likes the song: "I like that song, don't you? Take on Me. That's awesome." The rest of the video is pretty weak as Ed and Lisa "preach" from a queen/king size bed on the stage (I think the idea is to look like a bedroom). I think I prefer a pulpit. They quote a little bit of Scripture, but all-in-all the whole thing is kinda silly. You can watch the video here.

Tom Cruise
Stop the presses and someone call Tim LaHaye! According to this article, Tom Cruise is the "new 'Christ' of Scientology, according to leaders of the cult-like religion." The article goes on to say: "Like Christ, he’s been criticised for his views. But future generations will realise he was right."

"Help me, Tom Cruise!"

Purpose Driven Candidate has launched a new page dedicated to naming the names of those celebrities that have pledged their support for Illinois Senator Barack Obama's presidential aspirations.

"It's not often you get Warren Buffett, Oprah Winfrey, Will Smith, Pastor Rick Warren, and George Clooney on the same list. That just shows the incredible ability of Senator Obama to inspire some of the most famous and respected Americans alive today," said Ben Stanfield, founder.

Maybe Obama will pick Rick Warren as his running mate!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Senator Clinton is "In to Win"

Associated Press and Reuters stories this morning stated: Democratic Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton embarked on a widely anticipated campaign for the White House on Saturday, a former first lady intent on becoming the first female president. "I'm in and I'm in to win," she said on her Web site. Full story here and here.

Do you think Hillary will be our next President?

Friday, January 19, 2007

Somebody's Gonna Pay

Let's just suppose--really...just suppose:

Scenario Number One
Suppose I enter a contest and just suppose the contest is to see how much water a person can drink without going to the bathroom. And let's just suppose that I sign a waiver stating that I won't hold the sponsoring radio station responsible should something go awry (this would be a "red flag" to me--COULD something happen to me from just drinking water? Maybe I should check this out...hmmm) Anyway, continuing to suppose, while drinking over two gallons of water during the contest and my head begins to hurt, and I begin to feel "ill"-- I CONTINUE to drink water, eventually winning the second place prize of tickets to a "Justin Timberlake" concert. ( I was hoping to win the Wii game console, but this is a pretty good prize too--NOTE: heavy sarcasm implied) And now, just suppose that I die that afternoon from "water intoxication", according to the coroner's office.

Scenario Number Two (somewhat shorter)
Suppose I am a 15-year old girl that enjoys frequenting the website, MySpace, and suppose I am "lured to a meeting, drugged and assaulted in 2006 by an adult MySpace user."

NOW, there are tons of questions I ask at this point regarding both of these scenarios, but the real question for me is based on the following:

Let's suppose in both scenarios, my family decides to sue for damages "in the millions of dollars" in the MySpace case; as far as the water intoxication death, they plan to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the radio station.

Here's the question: Where in the heck did my family find a lawyer THAT STUPID/GREEDY to take the case??!!!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

American Idol (or American Delusion)

I've never seen a complete episode of American Idol; I know that Carrie Underwood was an American Idol winner--only because we both are from Oklahoma and that's all everybody talked about for a while. I have no idea when she won and I can't name a single song she sings.

So...after watching most of the two-hour season premiere Wednesday night from Seattle (and I really can't explain why I did) I have to ask: "Do the Idol "participants" have friends?" Who in the HECK is telling some of these people they can sing?!

Absolutely amazing...that many TALENTLESS people can be THAT delusional! Two words: "Bohemian Crapsody!"

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


Dr. Ken Ham is building a $25 million museum in rural Kentucky devoted to a Biblical perspective on creation. MSNBC carried the story. Part of the story included a "live poll" asking the question: How literally do you take the Bible? The results at the time I voted are shown below.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Three Days at Home

Here in Oklahoma, we've been hit with a blast of winter in the form of freezing rain, sleet, and ice. Thousands are without power--the hardest hit area around the Muskogee area (southeast of us). They are forecasting a low temperature tonight of 1 DEGREE!!!

My oldest son and I got out this morning and cleared the ice from his car (the wife and I park in the garage), then went to the groceery store to pickup a few things since it looks like there won't be any significant melting of this mess over the next week. I slipped and fell in the Wal-Mart parking lot. If I were a real American--I'd sue their butts! Needless to say: "It's slicker'n snot on a hoehandle." (If I have to explain're not from around here.) Anyway, we are very fortunate here in Owasso; we have electricity, food and water. According to the news over 112000 people are still without power and at least 15 deaths have been blamed on the storm.

Since I didn't go to work today, I took the opportunity to clean up some files and start getting things together for the "taxman." My wife teaches three and four-year-old preschoolers at a private Christian school in the area. She figured today that in just the past six months, she's spent over $1000 out of her pocket for school supplies/items for her classroom. That's on top of what the school supplies! Teaching is NOT a profitable profession.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Iced In

I know it gets colder in plenty of other places, but it is stinkin' cold here in Oklahoma. Freezing rain and sleet began falling yesterday around noon and except for a couple of "breaks", has been pretty steady the past 24 hours. Depending on which station you watch, we have anywhere from 1 1/2 to 2 inches of ice/sleet on the ground. About forty-thousand electric customers are without power as of 5:00 PM. So far, we have electricity and CABLE (Internet), so we'll probably we have plenty of Ramen noodles in the pantry. They're predicting more of the same through tomorrow. It's bad enough, most churches--including ours--have cancelled all services this weekend.

Spent most of the day studying for the CWI (Certified Welding Inspector) Test I'll be taking in February. I took two practice tests (there are three tests for the CWI) and did pretty well. Since we won't be going to church, I'll probably take the third practice test, tomorrow.

Alan Kurschner has closed comments on Calvinist Gadfly. As long as he keeps the site up and running, that's okay with me-- although I did enjoy reading the comments. Also Slice of Laodicea has revamped their site; they are now Christian Research Network. Contributing writers include Ingrid Schlueter, Ken Silva, Chris Rosebrough and Steve Camp. As with the "Gadfly" site, no comments.

I maintain two blogs (both pretty much identical); on my other site, a commentor asked about my previous post (Invactive Church Members)--basically, "what constitutes an active church member?" Are you an active member as long as you're not dead? Do you have to attend a certain number of times a month? a year? Can you just attend and not "serve" or be involved? Any thoughts?

Friday, January 12, 2007

Inactive Church Members

Tom Ascol has a good blog today re: his resolution on integrity in church membership which he proposed at the SBC last year in Greensboro. The Resolutions Committee never brought the thing out of committee. One of the opponents of the resolution, Tommy French stated: it was a good thing to keep them [inactive members] on the role (sic) because they are good evangelism prospects... Is he serious?

I personally know of a church that found "members" on their roll that had been deceased for years. Highly unlikely they are prospects.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Wikipedia Meme

  1. Go to Wikipedia
  2. In the Search box, type your birth month and day (but not year). Click "Go"
  3. List three events that happened on your birthday.
  4. List two important birthdays and one interesting death.
  5. List any holidays
  6. Post it.

March 9
  • 1862 - American Civil War: The first battle between two ironclad warships - In a five-hour battle near Hampton Roads, Virginia the USS Monitor fights the CSS Virginia to a draw.
  • 1933 - Great Depression: The U.S. Congress begins its first 100 days of enacting New Deal legislation. President Franklin D. Roosevelt submits the Emergency Banking Act to Congress.
  • 1981 - Ketchup is declared a vegetable, to help public schools in the USA with the balanced meal plan.

  • 1454 - Amerigo Vespucci, Italian explorer and cartographer (d. 1512)
  • 1945 - Robin Trower, British rock musician

  • 1996 - George Burns, American actor and singer (b. 1896)


Leave your answers in a comment if you like. Thanks to HeirOfGrace for this one.

I DO Get This

I DO get this: Joel Osteen Tops Most Influential Christians in America

For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. --2 Timothy 4:3

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

I Don't Get It

I don't get Oprah or people's infatuation with her.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

The Rules Don't Apply (Again)

This is the kind of thing that just "gets my goat." It seems Toys R Us had a contest that would award a $25000 to "to the first American baby born in 2007." Sounds pretty simple; first one born is the winner...maybe. The "winner", Yuki Lin, was born at the stroke of midnight at New York Downtown Hospital.

Although promotional materials called for "all expectant New Year's mothers" to apply, Toys "R" Us spokeswoman Kathleen Waugh said eligibility rules required babies' mothers to be legal residents. Many sweepstakes have such requirements, Waugh said.
(Source: Associated Press)
So what's the big deal? Well, it seems that Yuki's parents are NOT legal citzens of the United States and when Toys R Us found out, they took back their prize. That's when the grits hit the fan. The Lins got themselves an attorney; lots of people cried "foul!" and "racism!" and ultimately, Toys R Us caved and gave the money back. You can read about the whole stupid thing here.

Here's my question and observation: I don't begrudge the kid getting the money, but if the rules say "you must be a legal resident" AND YOU'RE NOT, why would you enter the contest? I can tell you why...THE RULES DON'T APPLY! And if you think the rules do apply, think again--just ask most Americans.

"Speed limit 25 miles per hour" means everybody else but ME.

"15 items or less" means 18 or 25 items or whatever happens to be in MY cart.

You get the idea. Maybe we should change "E pluribus unum" to "You're Not the Boss o' me!"

Okay. I'm moving on, now.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

The Free Will Song

MUSICAL WARNING: The "audio" quality of this video is not very good. You make the judgment as to why.

I saw this on the Fide-O blog today. How can a God be so awesome and powerful to be able to create and govern everything, "molding the mountains...holding the mighty waters in His hands", but He has no authority over Man?

According to the theology of the song, God doesn't force anyone -- "I give you freedom, is it 'yes' or 'no'?" -- which means that there are people that are born, live and die, NEVER being destined for heaven. THEIR choice, but God knew before He created them that they would not "choose Him"...and He allowed them to be born anyway. How is that different from the Doctrine of Election which the folks at Pensacola Christian College (and others) decry as "unfair" or "unloving?" The end result is the same, isn't it?

Tuesday, January 02, 2007


Most every year I make some sort of "resolution." Last year was to get to a gym and get myself in shape. I don't know that I'm in shape, but I did stick with the routine of going to the gym three to four days a week and doing SOMETHING. Actually, I have noticed an increase in energy and I did manage to lose 10 lbs without altering my diet all that much (maybe I should work on that this year).

Several years ago, I also resolved to read a devotion book of some type each year. I've gone through John MacArthur's Daily Bible, as well as his Drawing Near and Strength for Today. Last year, I went through most of John Calvin's Heart Aflame: Daily Readings from the Psalms. This year, I've chosen 365 Days with Spurgeon (see side bar). I can't say that I read EVERY day, but I try. Sometimes my work schedule interferes; sometimes I just allow the day get away without making the time. No matter how much I may miss, I can honestly say that the days I do the reading, I am blessed/encouraged.

The Calvinist Gadfly has issued a challenge to memorize 52 verses in 2007. I'm not sure I can do 52, but I'm also going to make an effort to memorize more Scripture this year.

The Pyromaniacs had a link to the following Ten Questions to Ask at the Start of a New Year or On Your Birthday by Don Whitney. They are definitely worth the time to read through. (Note: Mr. Whitney is Associate Professor of Biblical Spirituality at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY and a member of the Board of Directors for Founders Ministries. My own pastor, Bill Ascol, is also on the Founders Board.)

Well, there are some things I can work on this year, and God willing, I'll see some success.