Sermon Sunday – George Whitefield – The Eternity of Hell-Torments

September 18, 2011 at 6:30 am | Posted in Sermon Sunday | Leave a comment
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Eternity of Hell-Torments
by
George Whitefield
(1714-1770)

Matthew 25:46 “These shall go away into everlasting punishment.”

The excellency of the gospel dispensation, is greatly evidenced by those sanctions of rewards and punishments, which it offers to the choice of all its hearers, in order to engage them to be obedient to its precepts. For it promises no less than eternal happiness to the good, and denounces no slighter a punishment than everlasting misery against the wicked: On the one hand, It is a favor of life unto life,” on the other, “A favor of death unto death.” And though one would imagine, the bare mentioning of the former would be sufficient to draw men to their duty, yet ministers in all ages have found it necessary, frequently to remind their people of the latter, and to set before them the terrors of the Lord, as so many powerful dissuasives from sin.

But whence is it that men are so disingenuous [insincere, deceitful]? The reason seems to be this: The promise of eternal happiness is so agreeable to the inclinations and wishes of mankind, that all who call themselves christians, universally and willingly subscribe to the belief of it: but then there is something so shocking in the consideration of eternal torments, and seemingly such an infinite disproportion between an endless duration of pain, and short life spent in pleasure, that men (some at least of them) can scarcely be brought to confess it as an article of their faith, that an eternity of misery awaits the wicked in a future state.

I shall therefore at this time, beg leave to insist on the proof of this part of one of the Articles of our Creed; and endeavor to make good what our blessed Lord has here threatened in the words of the text, “These (that is, the wicked) shall go away into everlasting punishment.”

Accordingly, without considering the words as they stand in relation to the context; I shall resolve all I have to say, into this one general proposition, “That the torments reserved for the wicked hereafter, are eternal.”

But before I proceed to make good this, I must inform you that I take it for granted,

All present do steadfastly believe, They have something within them, which we call a soul, and which is capable of surviving the dissolution of the body, and of being miserable or happy to all eternity.

I take it for granted farther, That you believe a divine revelation; that those books, emphatically called the Scriptures, were written by the inspiration of God, and that the things therein contained, are founded upon eternal truth.

I take it for granted, That you believe, that the Son of God came down to die for sinners; and that there is but one Mediator between God and man, even the man Christ Jesus.

These things being granted, (and they were necessary to be premised) proceed we now to make good the one general proposition asserted in the text, That the torments reserved for the wicked hereafter are eternal. “These shall go away into everlasting punishment.” The

First argument I shall advance to prove that the torments reserved for the wicked hereafter, are eternal, is, That the word of God himself assures us, in line upon line, that it will be so.

To quote all the texts that might be produced in proof of this, would be endless. Let it suffice to instance only in a few. In the Old Testament, in the book of Daniel, chap. 12, ver. 2 we are told, that “some shall wake to everlasting life, and others to everlasting contempt.” In the book of Isaiah, it is said, that “the worm of those that have transgressed God’s law, and die impenitently, shall not die, nor their fire be quenched.” And in another place the holy Prophet , struck, no doubt, with astonishment and horror at the prospect of the continuance of the torments of the damned, breaks out into this moving expostulation, “Who can dwell with everlasting burnings?”

The New Testament is still fuller as to this point, it being a revelation which brought this and such-like particulars to a clear light. The Apostle Jude tells us of the profane despisers of dignities in his days, that “for them was reserved the blackness of darkness forever.” And in the book of the Revelation, it is written, that “the smoke of the torments of the wicked ascendeth for ever and ever.” And if we believe the witness of men inspired, the witness of the Son of God, who had the Spirit given him, as Mediator, without measure, is still far greater: and in St. Mark’s gospel, He repeats this solemn declaration three several times, It is better for thee to enter into life maimed;” that is, it is better to forego the gratification of thy lust, or incur the displeasure of a friend, which may be as dear to thee as a hand, or as useful as a foot, “than having two hands and feet, (that is, for indulging the one, or disobeying God to oblige the other) to be cast into hell, where the worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.”

And here again, in the words of the text, “These (the wicked) shall go away into everlasting punishment.”

I know it has been objected by some who have denied the eternity of hell-torments, That the words everlasting and ever and ever, are often used in the Holy Scriptures (especially in the Old Testament) when they signify not an endless duration, but a limited term of time.

And this we readily grant: but then we reply, That when the words are used with this limitation, they either manifestly appear to be used so from the context; or are put in opposition to occasional types which God gave his people on some special occasions, as when it is said, “It shall be a perpetual or everlasting statute,” or, “a statute for ever;” that is, a standing type, and not merely transient or occasional, as was the pillar of cloud, the manna, and such-like. Or, lastly, they have a relation to that covenant, God made with his spiritual Israel; which, if understood in a spiritual sense, will be everlasting, though the ceremonial dispensation be abolished.

Besides, it ought to be observed, that some of the passages just now referred to, have neither of these words so much as mentioned in them, and cannot possibly be interpreted, so as to denote only a limited term of years.

But let that be as it will, it is evident even to a demonstration, that the words of the text will not admit of such a restrained signification, as appears from their being directly opposed to the words immediately following, “That the righteous shall go into life eternal.” From which words, all are ready to grant, that the life promised to the righteous will be eternal. And why the punishment threatened to the wicked should not be understood to be eternal likewise, when the very same word in the original, is used to express the duration of each, no shadow of a reason can be given.

But, Secondly, There cannot be one argument urged, why God should reward his saints with everlasting happiness, which will not equally prove that he ought to punish sinners with eternal misery.

For, since we know nothing (at least for a certainty) how he will deal with either but by a Diving Revelation; and since, as was proved by the foregoing argument, he hath as positively threatened eternally to punish the wicked, as to reward the good; it follows, that his truth will be as much impeached and called in question, did he not inflict his punishments, as it would be, if he did not confer his rewards.

To this also it has been objected, That though God is obliged by promise to give his rewards, yet his veracity could not be called in question, supposing he should not execute his threatenings, as he actually did not in the case of Nineveh; which God expressly declared by his Prophet Jonah, “should be destroyed in forty days:” notwithstanding the sequel of the story informs us, that Nineveh was spared.

But in answer to this objection we affirm, that God’s threatenings, as well as promises, are without repentance; and for this reason, because they are both founded on the eternal laws of right reason. Accordingly we always find, that where the conditions were not performed, on the non-performance of which the threatenings were denounced, God always executed the punishment threatened. The driving Adam out of Eden, the destruction of the old world by a deluge of water, and the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah, are, and will be always so many standing monuments of God’s executing his threatenings when denounced, though to our weak apprehensions, the punishment may seem far to exceed the crime.

It is true, God did spare Nineveh, and that because the inhabitants did actually repent, and therefore performed the conditions upon which it was supposed, by the Prophet’s being sent to warn them, the threatened punishment should be withheld.

And so in respect to gospel threatenings. If men will so far consult their own welfare, as to comply with the gospel, God certainly will not punish them, but on the contrary, confer upon them his rewards. But to affirm that he will not punish, and that eternally to, impenitent, obstinate sinners, according as he hath threatened; what is it, in effect, but to make God like a man, that he should lie, or the son of man, that he should repent?

But the absurdity of such an opinion will appear still more evident from

The Third argument I shall offer to prove, that the torments reserved for the wicked hereafter are eternal, From the nature of the christian covenant.

And here I must again observe, that it was taken for granted at the beginning of this discourse, that you believe the Son of God came down to save sinners; and that there is but one Mediator between God and men, even the Man Christ Jesus.

And here I take it for granted farther, (unless you believe the absurd and unwarrantable doctrine of purgatory) that you are fully persuaded, this life is the only time allotted by Almighty God for working out our salvation, and that after a few years are passed over, there will remain no more sacrifice for sin.

And if this be granted (and who dares deny it?) it follows, that if the wicked man dieth in his wickedness, and under the wrath of God, he must continue in that state to all eternity. For, since there is no possibility of their being delivered out of such a condition, but by and through Christ; and since, at the hour of death, the time of Christ’s mediation and intercession for him is irrecoverably gone; the same reason that may be given, why God should punish a sinner that dieth under the guilt of his sins for a single day, will equally hold good, why he should continue to punish him for a year, an age, nay all eternity.

But I hasten to the Fourth and last argument, to prove, That the torments reserved for the wicked hereafter are eternal, Because the devil’s punishment is to be so.

That there is such a being whom we call the devil; that he was once an angel of light, but for his pride and rebellion against God, was cast down from heaven, and is now permitted, with the rest of the spiritual wickednesses, to walk to and fro, seeking whom they may devour; that there is a place of torment reserved for them, or, to use the Apostle’s words, “That they are reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day;” are truths all here present were supposed to be convinced of, at the beginning of the discourse, you believing the Holy Scriptures to be written by the inspiration of God, wherein these truths are delivered.

But then if we allow all this, and think it no injustice in God to punish those once glorious spirits for their rebellion; how can we think it unjust in him, to punish wicked men for their impenitency to all eternity?

You will say, perhaps, that they have sinned against greater light, and therefore deserve a greater punishment. And so we grant that the punishment of the fallen angels may be greater as to degree, than that of wicked men; but then we affirm, it will be equal as to the eternal duration of it: for in that day, as the lively oracles of God inform us, shall the Son of Man say to them on his left hand, “Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.” Where we find that impenitent sinners are to be cast into the same everlasting fire, with the devil and his angels; and that too very justly. For though they may have sinned against greater light, yet christians sin against greater mercy. Since Christ took not hold of, did not die for, the fallen angels, but for men and for our salvation. So that if God spared not those excellent beings, assure thyself, O obstinate sinner, whoever thou art, he will by no means spare thee.

From what then has been said it plainly appears, that verily the torments reserved for the wicked hereafter, war eternal. And if so, brethren, how ought we to fly to Jesus Christ for refuge; how holy ought we to be in all manner of conversation and godliness, that we may be accounted worthy to escape this wrath to come!

But before I proceed to a practical exhortation, permit me to draw an inference or two from what has been said.

And First, If the torments reserved for the wicked hereafter are eternal, what shall we say to those, who make an open profession in their creed to believe a life everlasting, a life of misery as well as happiness, and yet dare to live in the actual commission of those sins which will unavoidably, without repentance, bring them into that place of torment? Thou believest that the punishments of the impenitently wicked in another life, are eternal: “Thou dost well, the devils also believe and tremble.” But know O vain man, unless this belief doth influence thy practice, and makes thee bid adieu to thy sins, every time thou repeatest thy creed, thou doest in effect say, I believe I shall be undone for ever.

But, Secondly, If the torments reserved for the wicked hereafter are eternal, then let this serve as a caution to such persons, (and it is to be feared there are some such) who go about to dissuade others from the belief of such an important truth: There being no surer way, in all probability, to encourage and promote infidelity and profaneness, than the broaching or maintaining so unwarrantable a doctrine. For if the positive threats of God concerning the eternity of hell-torments, are already found insufficient to deter men from sin, what a higher pitch of wickedness may w imagine they will quickly arrive at, when they are taught to entertain any hopes of a future recovery out of them; or, what is still worse, that their souls are hereafter to be annihilated, and become like the beasts that perish? But woe unto such blind leaders of the blind. No wonder if they both fall into that ditch. And let such corrupters of God’s word know, that I testify unto every man that heareth me this day, “That if any one shall add unto, or take away from the words that are written in the book of God, God shall take his part out of the book of life, an shall add unto him all the plagues that are in that book.”

Thirdly and Lastly, If the torments reserved for the wicked hereafter are eternal, then this may serve as a reproof for those who quarrel with God, and say it is inconsistent with his justice, to punish a person to all eternity, only for enjoying the pleasures of sin for a season. But such persons must be told, that it is not their thinking or calling God unjust, will make him so, no more than a condemned prisoner’s saying the law or judge is unjust, will render either duly chargeable with such an imputation. But knowest thou, O worm, what blasphemy thou are guilty of, in charging God with injustice? “Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, why hast thou made me thus?” Wilt thou presume to arraign the Almighty at the bar of thy shallow reasoning? And call him unjust, for punishing thee eternally, only because thou wishest it may not be so? But hath God said it, and shall he not do it? He hath said it: and let God be true, though every man be a liar. “Shall not the judge of all the earth do right?” Assuredly he will. And if sinners will not own his justice in his threatenings here, they will be compelled ere long to own and feel them, when tormented by him hereafter.

But to come to a more practical application of what has been delivered.

You have heard, brethren, the eternity of hell-torments plainly proved, from the express declarations of holy scriptures, and consequences naturally drawn from them. And now there seems to need no great art of rhetoric to persuade any understanding person to avoid and abhor those sins, which without repentance will certainly plunge him into this eternal gulf. The disproportion between the pleasure and the pain (if there be any pleasure in sin) is so infinitely great, that supposing it was only possible, though not certain, that the wicked would be everlastingly punished, no one that has the reason of a man, for the enjoying a little momentary pleasure, would, one might imagine, run the hazard of enduring eternal pain. But since the torments of the damned are not only possible, but certain (since God himself, who cannot lie, has told us so) for men, notwithstanding, to persist in their disobedience, and then flatter themselves, that God will not make good his threatenings, is a most egregious [gross, excessive] instance of folly and presumption.

Dives himself supposed, that if one rose from the dead, his brethren would amend their lives, but Christians, it seems, will not repent, though the Son of God died and rose again, and told them what they must expect, if they continue obstinate in evil-doing.

Would we now and then draw off our thoughts from sensible objects, and by faith meditate a while on the miseries of the damned, I doubt not but we should, as it were, hear many an unhappy soul venting his fruitless sorrows, in some such piteous moans as these.

“O wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me from this body of death!” O foolish mortal that I was, thus to bring myself into these never- ceasing tortures, for the transitory enjoyment of a few short-lived pleasures, which scarcely afforded me any satisfaction, even when I most indulged myself in them. Alas! Are these the wages, these the effects of sin? O damned apostate! First to delude me with pretended promises of happiness, and after several years drudgery in his service, thus to involve me in eternal woe. O that I had never hearkened to his beguiling insinuations! O that I had rejected his very first suggestions with the utmost detestation and abhorrence! O that I had taken up my cross and followed Christ! O that I had never ridiculed serious godliness; and out of a false politeness, condemned the truly pious as too severe, enthusiastic, or superstitious! For I then had been happy indeed, happy beyond expression, happy to all eternity, yonder in those blessed regions where they fit, clothed with unspeakable glory, and chanting forth their seraphic hallelujahs to the Lamb that sitteth upon the throne for ever. But, alas! These reflections come now too late; these wishes now are vain and fruitless. I have not suffered, and therefore must not reign with them. I have in effect denied the Lord that bought me, and therefore justly am I now denied by him. But must I live for ever tormented in these flames? Must this body of mine, which not long since lay in state, was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day, must it be here eternally confined, and made the mockery of insulting devils? O eternity! That thought fills me with despair: I must be miserable for ever.”

Come then, all ye self-deluding, self-deluded sinners, and imagine yourselves for once in the place of that truly wretched man I have been here describing. Think, I beseech you by the mercies of God in Christ Jesus, think with yourselves, how racking, how unsupportable the never- dying worm of a self-condemning conscience will hereafter be to you. Think how impossible it will be for you to dwell with everlasting burnings.

Come, all ye christians of a lukewarm, Laodicean spirit, ye Gallie’s in religion, who care a little, but not enough for the things of God; O think, think with yourselves, how deplorable it will be to lose the enjoyment of heaven, and run into endless torments, merely because you will be content to be almost, and will not strive to be altogether christians. Consider, I beseech you consider, how you will rave and curse that fatal stupidity which made you believe any thing less than true faith in Jesus, productive of a life of strict piety, self-denial, and mortification, can keep you from those torments, the eternity of which I have been endeavoring to prove.

But I can no more. These thoughts are too melancholy for me to dwell on, as well as for you to hear; and God knows, as punishing is his strange work, so denouncing his threatenings is mine. But if the bare mentioning the torments of the damned is so shocking, how terrible must the enduring of them be!

And now, are not some of you ready to cry out, “These are hard sayings, who can bear them?”

But let not sincere Christians be in the least terrified at what has been delivered: No, for you is reserved a crown, a kingdom, an eternal and exceeding weight of glory. Christ never said that the righteous, the believing, the upright, the sincere, but the wicked, merciless, negatively good professors before described, shall go into everlasting punishment. For you, who love him in sincerity, a new and living way is laid open into the Holy of Holies by the blood of Jesus Christ: and an abundant entrance will be administered unto you, at the great day of account, into eternal life. Take heed, therefore, and beware that there be not in any of you a root of bitterness springing up of unbelief: but on the contrary, steadfastly and heartily rely on the many precious promises reached out to you in the gospel, knowing that he who hath promised is faithful, and therefore will perform.

But let no obstinately wicked professors dare to apply any of the divine promises to themselves: “For it is not meet to take the children’s meat and give it unto dogs:” No, to such the terrors of the Lord only belong. And as certainly as Christ will say to his true followers, “Come, ye blessed children of my Father, receive the kingdom prepared for you from the beginning of the world;” so he will unalterably pronounce this dreadful sentence against all that die in their sins, “Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.”

From which unhappy state, may God of his infinite mercy deliver us all through Jesus Christ; to whom, with thee O Father, and thee O Holy Ghost, three Persons and one eternal God, be ascribed, as is most due, all honor, power, might, majesty, and dominion, now and for ever more.


Newslinks 08/01/10

August 1, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Posted in Newslinks | Leave a comment
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Sunday’s Newslinks brought to you by At Ease Tees

LCMS President Laments Churches’ Pro-Gay Directions
The outgoing president of the second largest Lutheran church body in America lamented the directions taken on matters of sexuality by some member churches of the Lutheran World Federation.

Lutheran World Federation Elects Palestinian Bishop as President

Orthodox Anglicans Urged to Hold Fast to Sound Teaching

Conservative Leaders Sound Off Against Kenya’s ‘Pro-Abortion’ Constitution

Thousands of Christian Zionists Gather to Support Israel

Government-Incited Gang in Vietnam Attacks House Church

Energy Department Official Can’t Say How Much Greenhouse Gas Is Generated on Capitol Hill
(CNSNews.com)
– At a House subcommittee hearing last week, an Energy Department official could not answer a question from a Republican lawmaker about how much pollution is emitted in the process of generating electricity for federal government operations in the nation’s capital. When CNSNews.com asked for the greenhouse gas emissions inventory for the federal government operations in Washington, D.C., a spokesperson for the Energy Department said that greenhouse gas emissions are not measured by regions, but by each agency nationwide. The spokesperson also said that in the future, greenhouse gas emissions will be collected by zip code.

Lockerbie Probe May Prove Uncomfortable for Obama Administration
(CNSNews.com)
– The four Democratic U.S. senators probing the early release of the Libyan convicted in the Lockerbie bombing believe there were links to a BP oil deal, but their inquiry may have the unintended consequence of raising questions about just how strongly the Obama administration opposed the Libyan’s release. Scottish government ministers, stung by accusations that they released Abdel Baset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi to ease a massive oil exploration contract in Libya, are pointing out that it is the U.S. government that is blocking the release of two documents relating to the decision.

U.S. Spent $314,613 Studying Increase in Family Violence After NFL Upset Losses
(CNSNews.com)
– The National Institutes of Health spent $314,613 over two years on a study that found family violence increases about three times as much on the Fourth of July as it does after the local NFL team suffers an “upset” loss. The researchers also determined that an “upset” loss by the local NFL home team was not linked to nearly as great an increase in family violence as were Christmas Day, Thanksgiving Day, Memorial Day, New Year’s Day, and New Year’s Eve.

Sen. Baucus Won’t Say If Obama’s Controversial Recess-Appointee to Run Medicare Will Get Confirmation Hearing
(CNSNews.com)
– Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) would not say whether Dr. Donald Berwick, who received a recess appointment to run the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, would ever receive a Senate confirmation hearing in the committee that Baucus oversees, as the Constitution requires. On Capitol Hill last week, CNSNews.com asked Sen. Baucus, “Why didn’t you schedule a hearing for Dr. Berwick?”

Schumer’s New Campaign Finance Bill Preserves NRA Loophole
(CNSNews.com)
– An updated version of a campaign finance bill written by Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) preserves a controversial loophole that would exempt the National Rifle Association from tough new disclosure and speech restrictions during election cycles. The new bill, an updated version of Schumer’s original DISCLOSE Act, was introduced on the Senate floor on July 21 without being referred to committee.

Massive US-South Korea Naval Maneuvers Held Amid North Korean Threats
(CNSNews.com)
– Despite characteristically belligerent rhetoric, there were no reports of North Korean troop movements or threatening behavior as South Korea and the United States continued large-scale naval exercises Monday aimed at deterring aggression by the isolated communist state. A statement by U.S. Army Gen. Walter Sharp, commander of U.S. Forces Korea, said the drills were “designed to send a clear message to North Korea that its aggressive behavior must stop.”

ACLJ Asks Commission to Make N.Y. Building a Landmark to Keep 13-Story Mosque from Being Built at Ground Zero
(CNSNews.com)
– A conservative civil liberties group has formally requested landmark status for a building in lower Manhattan that an Islamic group wants to replace with a 13-story mosque and community center. The American Center for Law and Justice said it is “urging city officials to landmark the site because it stands as a symbol of America’s strength and survival in the face of brutal, sadistic terrorism.”

Rangel a liability to the party
An ethics watchdog organization believes Congressman Charles Rangel is becoming an increasing liability to the Democratic Party — thus the decision to file ethics charges against the veteran lawmaker.

AZ judge doesn’t ignore reality
Immigration reform activist Ira Mehlman is encouraged that the judge hearing challenges to Arizona’s immigration law has raised the realities of what’s happening in the state because of out-of-control illegal immigration there.

Students support prof’s conservative stand
Support is mounting for a University of Illinois professor who was fired for telling students in his Catholicism class that he agrees with the Catholic Church’s teaching against homosexuality.

Sex-ed program delayed, modified
Outrage from parents has apparently resulted in delaying the implementation of a proposed controversial sex-ed program in Montana.

Perspective: Real change is possible
As long as there are Christians willing to consecrate themselves to God in prayer for the spiritual state of America, real change is possible.

Ted Haggard Aims for Simplicity with New Church
Colorado Springs pastor Ted Haggard is done with the dark auditoriums, smoke machines, emotional hype and the dry professional preachers.

Megachurch Pastor Seeks 100,000 Christians to ‘Save America’

Traditional Marriage Group Goes on 23-City Campaign

German Christians Pray After Love Parade Tragedy

LWF President-Elect: Who Could Imagine the Holy Land without Christians?

Study: Few Americans Say Faith is Top Priority

Obama Won’t Speak In Person at Boy Scouts’ 100th Anniversary Celebration But Will Appear on ABC TV’s ‘The View’
(CNSNews.com)
– President Barack Obama, the honorary chairman of the Boy Scouts of America, will not speak in person before tens of thousands of boys gathered at the National Scout Jamboree in Virginia. However, the president is sending a videotaped message to the scouts to be played on Wednesday, the same day he will be in Manhattan to tape an appearance on ABC’s talk show “The View.”

Britain’s National Health Service, Praised by Obama’s Medicare Chief, to Undergo Cost-Cutting Overhaul
(CNSNews.com)
– Britain’s National Health Service, which rations basic health care services to control costs, will undergo major budget cuts and restructuring, ostensibly to make the government-run system less bureaucratic and more “bottom-up,” according to detailed news reports over the weekend from the United Kingdom. Dr. Donald Berwick, who recently received a recess-appointment to run the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in America, has praised Britain’s National Health Service, saying he loves the single-payer system.

U.S. Opposition to Release of Lockerbie Convict Was Clear and Consistent, State Department Says
(CNSNews.com)
– The Obama administration has no plans to release any further correspondence with Scotland relating to the release of the Libyan convicted in the Lockerbie bombing. “Nothing more needs to be released,” State Department spokesman Philip Crowley told CNSNews on Monday, after the department made public the text of a letter sent to Scottish ministers eight days before Abdel Baset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi was freed and flown home to Libya. Ahead of a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the matter scheduled for Thursday, CNSNews asked Crowley whether a final, still-unreleased document would now be made available.

President Obama Once Again Makes Erroneous Claim That Foreign Entities Can Spend Unlimited Amounts in U.S. Elections
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– President Barack Obama on Monday incorrectly stated that a landmark campaign-finance ruling allows foreign entities to pour money into U.S. elections. It’s the second time he’s made such a claim, and this time it happened while he was promoting the Democrats’ DISCLOSE Act in a Rose Garden speech. The Senate on Tuesday is taking up the legislation that would put strict new requirements on campaign advertising. The House already has passed a similar version of the bill.

Homeland Security Efforts to Combat Increase in Human Trafficking-Related Violence Along Border ‘Static,’ GAO Says
(CNSNews.com)
– In recent years there has been an increase in violence associated with human trafficking along the southwest border. Despite this, the Immigration and Custom Enforcement agency’s investigative resources committed to alien smuggling in that area have remained “static,” according to a government audit.

Opposition Mounts Against ObamaCare Tax Provision
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– Business advocates are hoping Congress scraps a tax provision in the health care overhaul law that they say is overly burdensome to smaller companies.

New Claims of ISI Terrorist Links Overshadow Pakistan’s Decision to Extend Army Chief’s Job
(CNSNews.com)
– The decision to extend the tenure of Pakistan’s powerful army chief Gen. Ashfaq Kayani comes at a time of renewed scrutiny into alleged collusion between the military intelligence agency, which Kayani oversaw from 2004-2007, and terrorists in Afghanistan. The move comes amid controversy over a cache of Afghanistan battlefield reports released by the whistleblower site, WikiLeaks, some of them describing collusion between Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) and the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Former Surgeon General Koop Calls Kagan’s Alteration of ACOG’s Partial Birth Abortion Statement ‘Unethical’ and ‘Disgraceful’
(CNSNews.com)
– In an open letter delivered last week, former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop is urging senators to vote against Elena Kagan’s nomination to the Supreme Court, in light of her role in the alteration of a medical statement about partial-birth abortion from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). “I was deeply disturbed to learn the Elena Kagan, the nominee for Supreme Court scheduled for a Senate committee vote next week, manipulated the medical policy statement on partial-birth abortion of a major medical organization, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, in January 1997,” Koop wrote in his letter.

Washington State to Allow Pharmacies A Choice in Stocking ‘Morning-After Pill’
(CNSNews.com)
– Pharmacists in the State of Washington may soon be free to choose the medications they want to provide in their pharmacies after a lawsuit prompted the state’s pharmacy board to reevaluate the current regulations. Pharmacists in Washington currently are required to stock the “morning-after pill,” which is marketed as Plan B, regardless of any moral or ethical concerns they may have.

Ford alive because of bailouts?
While GM and Chrysler struggle financially, the other of the “Big Three” — the one that refused government bailout money — is doing fine.

GOP faction challenges military ban
A conservative military watchdog says a “gay Republican group” is attempting to use the courts to bring irreparable harm to the military.

AZ law simply good business practice
Arizona Governor Jan Brewer recently called the owner of the Phoenix Suns basketball team to task for his opposition to the state’s tough immigration enforcement bill.

Praying pro-lifers see positive results
Pro-lifers who prayed at a well-publicized abortion clinic in Illinois are claiming success after a number of women chose life over abortion.

Perspective: Pornography and women
Dignity is not a quality most girls value — it’s not a quality they see held in high regard, or modeled by our female cultural icons.

‘No Leverage’ in Newt Gingrich’s Ground Zero Mosque Argument
Newt Gingrich offers a “provocative” argument about the proposed Ground Zero mosque and Saudi Arabia’s church building policy, but it has “no leverage,” said a religious freedom expert.

Anglican Panel Rejects Proposal to Cut Episcopal Church

PC(USA) Pensions Board Proceeds Cautiously with Domestic Partner Benefits

Evangelicals Confront Western Europe’s Spiritual Malaise

U.S. Should Help N. Korean Orphans, Say Korean-Americans

Christian Nursing Student Nearly Dies from Assault in Pakistan

Biden Claims $600 Billion in Stimulus Funds Spent — ‘We’re Building a Government That Delivers More Bang for the Buck Than Ever Before’
(CNSNews.com)
– Vice President Joe Biden says “Americans deserve a government that actually works,” and he also assured liberals that the Obama administration is “trying to build a government that delivers much more bang for the buck than it ever has before.” In remarks on Tuesday, Biden said the government has spent $600 billion in economic stimulus funds — “and we’re seeing waste, fraud, and abuse claims at just about two-tenths of 1 percent of the entire amount of money spent.”

Hoyer Refuses to Rule Out Raising the Retirement Age to Address Social Security
(CNSNews.com)
– House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer on Tuesday would not rule out raising the retirement age in attempt to save Social Security. “What I have said, in a speech that was pretty specific, was that I think everything needs to be on the table,” Hoyer said.

EPA Puts ‘Environmental Justice’ Front and Center in Its Rulemaking Process
(CNSNews.com)
– The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has released a 55-page “guidance” to help its employees “advance environmental justice” for low-income and minority communities. “Achieving environmental justice is an Agency priority and should be factored into every decision,” the document says.

Progress Towards July 2011 Troop Drawdown in Afghanistan Mixed, U.S. Envoy Says
(CNSNews.com)
– Richard Holbrooke, the U.S. special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, when questioned during a Senate panel hearing, indicated that the progress towards Obama’s July 2011 drawdown date is mixed, and he added that “there is no single answer yet to this extraordinarily complicated situation.”

Rep. Pence: Medicare Chief Berwick ‘Not Entitled to That Job,’ Must Explain Praise for UK ‘Socialist Health Care System’
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) says he is concerned about the prospect of health care rationing following the recess appointment of Dr. Donald Berwick to serve as the administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicare Services. “I think it was wrong for the president to bypass the confirmation process at a time when the American people are so focused on legislation where the ink is barely dry,” Pence told CNSNews.com.

Democrat Postpones Senate Hearing on Lockerbie Controversy, After Key Witnesses Rebuff His Request to ‘Clear the Air’
(CNSNews.com)
– Accusing Scottish and British officials and BP executives of “stonewalling,” the Democratic senator who was to have chaired a hearing this week on the Lockerbie controversy announced Tuesday that it would be postponed. “We are at a place where no witnesses of consequence has the courage to step forward and clear the air,” Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey told reporters. With the key witnesses declining to attend, Tuesday’s postponement announcement was not unexpected.

Afghanistan Presses U.S. to Take Firmer Line With Pakistan Over Terror Links
(CNSNews.com)
– Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s national security council chided the U.S. government Tuesday for not taking a tougher line with Pakistan over its alleged collusion with terrorists operating in Afghanistan. The unauthorized leak of U.S. military documents revealing collaboration between members of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) and the Taliban and other jihadist groups may slow down Karzai’s recent policy of seeking warmer relations with Islamabad.

Key cause of AIDS ‘off the table’
Pro-family activist Peter LaBarbera says an important aspect was missing from last week’s International AIDS Conference in Vienna, Austria, when the Obama administration pledged the support of the U.S. in the global fight against AIDS.

Perspective: Hide-and-seek hypocrites
When a piece of legislation dubbed the “DISCLOSE Act” surfaces, the voter’s instinctive reaction should be: What are the politicians trying to hide now?

Seniors’ group blasting Berwick
A conservative alternative to AARP is speaking out against President Obama’s healthcare agenda and recent appointment to oversee Medicare and Medicaid.

Choi sees ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ at work
Elaine Donnelly thinks the U.S. military was extremely lenient in its treatment of an officer who engaged in radical homosexual activism before he was discharged for his sexual orientation.

Candidate criticized for remark about Islam
A Republican candidate for governor of Tennessee is being criticized by a Muslim rights group for questioning whether Islam is more of a cult than a religion.

Gospel Music Association Moves Dove Awards to Atlanta
The Gospel Music Association (GMA) said it was taking a “bold step” Tuesday in hosting the next Dove Awards in a place outside of Nashville for the first time.

LWF 11th Assembly Concludes with ‘Message’ to Churches

Report Reveals Ineffectiveness of Methodist Structures

Fla. Church Plans ‘Burn a Quran’ Day to Mark 9/11

ELCA Presiding Bishop Calls for Immigration Reform in Letter to Obama

Spain Orders Judge to Return Salary Over Gay Adoption Trial

Fed’s argument against AZ law ‘ludicrous’
An Arizona sheriff on the front lines in the battle against illegal immigration believes the Supreme Court will ultimately have to overturn Wednesday’s ruling that blocked implementation of most of the new state measure cracking down on those who are in the country illegally.

Conscience vs. creed
Some Democratic senators say they don’t feel a need to accept all of their churches’ teachings.

Court sides with university, ADF to appeal
Alliance Defense Fund will appeal the federal court decision that allows Eastern Michigan University to expel Christian student Julea Ward from the counseling program for not affirming homosexual behavior as morally acceptable.

Perspective: Shirley Sherrod, quit while you’re ahead
Andrew Breitbart erred in not viewing Shirley Sherrod’s entire NAACP speech — but she shouldn’t be given a pass for her own past racist comments.

Educator excellence – a fair expectation
A Christian educator is praising a decision by the Washington, DC, public school system to fire more than 240 teachers because of poor performance.

Free Enterprise — Not Government Oversight — Key to GM Turnaround, Say Company Officials
(CNSNews.com)
– Free enterprise and the American marketplace – not the guiding hand of government – have revitalized the beleaguered automaker General Motors, which expects to announce another profitable quarter, according to GM officials. President Barack Obama plans to visit a GM plant in Hamtramk, Michigan on July 30, and his administration is linking GM’s return to profitability with the bailout of the old GM the administration orchestrated last summer.

Republicans Say Obama’s Drilling Moratorium Could Have Taxpayers Picking Up Tab for More Unemployed Oil Workers
(CNSNews.com)
– Critics of the Obama administration’s moratorium on offshore drilling say it will put more workers on the unemployment rolls – at taxpayer expense — especially those in the Gulf region, which is struggling to recover from the April 20 Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion and subsequent oil leak. Marking the 100th day after the disaster on Wednesday, House Republicans held a press conference to denounce both the moratorium and Democrat-sponsored legislation arising from the oil spill.

Reid: Democrats’ Energy Bill Will Create Jobs and Lower Energy Costs for Consumers
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Wednesday the Senate’s energy bill is necessary for the “environment and for national security.” He also said the legislation will generate jobs and lower energy costs for consumers. But Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), ranking member of the Senate Energy and Public Works Committee, indicated that the Senate’s energy bill will eliminate jobs by making Obama’s oil drilling moratorium permanent.

Michelle Obama’s Request for Birthday Wishes for Her Husband Links to Donation Page
(CNSNews.com)
– It seems like a nice gesture –- an e-mail message from a loving wife, urging thousands of people to join her in wishing her husband a happy 49th birthday by signing an electronic birthday card. But in Washington, D.C., nothing is that simple. The electronic card to Barack Obama also serves as a Democratic Party fundraiser.

Senators DeMint and Brownback Open to GOP Filibusters to Force Hearing on Medicare Chief
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– Sens. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) and Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) on Wednesday indicated that they are open to filibustering any and all legislation in the Senate until a confirmation hearing is held for Dr. Donald Berwick, who was recently recess-appointed by President Obama to head the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

GAO: Some Mexican Drug Traffickers ‘Specialize’ in Smuggling Aliens From Countries With Ties to Terrorism Into the U.S.
(CNSNews.com)
– Some Mexican drug-trafficking organizations are involved in smuggling potential terrorists across the southwestern border, according to the Government Accountability Office. “Aliens from countries of special interest to the United States such as Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, and Pakistan…illegally enter the United States” across the southwest border, the GAO’s Richard Stana said in a report issued July 22.

Dem Governors Condemn ‘Patchwork’ AZ Law; GOP Governors Hedge
(CNSNews.com)
– As a federal judge in Phoenix barred enforcement of major elements of Arizona’s immigration law Wednesday, Democratic governors continued to express their opposition to a “patchwork” of state laws, while GOP state executives were split on the issue.

Pro-Life Groups Seek Probe Into Kagan’s Clinton-Era Role in Partial Birth Abortion Debate
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– More than 30 pro-life organizations are calling on senators to investigate Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan’s record on partial-birth abortion while she served as a Clinton administration attorney. The pro-life groups are concerned about discrepancies between Kagan’s testimony before Congress and written documentation of her influence on medical organizations while advising President William J. Clinton on partial-birth abortion.

Tanker Incident Raises Concerns About Oil Transit Through Persian Gulf
(CNSNews.com)
– Mystery surrounds an incident in which a laden oil tanker was damaged in the Strait of Hormuz Wednesday. Maritime and shipping officials are at odds over whether an intentional explosion or a freak wave hit the tanker. The incident again highlights the vulnerability of the world’s most important energy waterway, one which Iran has periodically threatened to block, in retaliation for international pressure over its nuclear program.

Japan Welcomes News That U..S Envoy Will Attend Hiroshima Commemoration for First Time
(CNSNews.com)
– The State Department announced that U.S. Ambassador John Roos would represent the U.S. at the August 6 event at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, “to express respect for all of the victims of World War II.” Asked why the gesture was being made at this time, spokesman Philip Crowley said, “At this particular point, we thought it was the right thing to do.” Japanese media attributed the decision to President Obama’s agenda of pursuing “a world without nuclear weapons.”

Faith Leaders Protest Arizona Immigration Law
Some religious leaders from Arizona and elsewhere are coordinating nationwide protests against the state’s new immigration law, which takes effect Thursday.

Mayors Urged to Resist Atheists’ Demands to Drop Invocations

Episcopal Head Talks Conflict, Diversity, Immigration

Fla. Megachurch Readies Oil Spill Kids for Back to School

Christian Relief Group: Kyrgyzstan in Turmoil

Pastor in Russian Republic of Dagestan Killed

Hoyer: Expiration of Bush Tax Cuts Equals a ‘Republican Tax Increase’ on Middle Class
(CNSNews.com)
– House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said on Wednesday that the expiration built into the Bush tax cuts is a “Republican tax increase” for “working Americans,” and that Democrats have “no intention” of allowing it to go into effect. “We’re going to act and make sure that the Republican phase out and increase in taxes does not end as they provided for in the laws they passed.”

Obama Administration Giving Millions to States to Build Their New Health Insurance Exchanges
(CNSNews.com)
– The Health and Human Services Department on Thursday moved ahead with its plans to establish “the health insurance marketplace of the future.” It announced “two key steps” – including $51 million in grant money — in its effort to “partner with states” in setting up the new health insurance exchanges.

Obama, Who Ended D.C.’s Voucher Program, Talks About Improving Education for Children ‘Born in the Wrong Neighborhood’
(CNSNews.com)
– The Obama administration is phasing out a program that allows underprivileged children to get scholarships to expensive private schools in Washington, D.C., such as Sidwell Friends, the school the Obama girls attend. Nevertheless, Obama on Thursday spoke about his “obligation to lift up every child” to help them achieve a quality education.

DNC Chair Kaine Complains of Media Effort to ‘Brand’ Sherrod, but Stops Short of Calling FoxNews ‘Racist’
(CNSNews.com)
– Democratic National Committee Chairman Tim Kaine refused Wednesday to say whether he agreed with former DNC Chairman Howard Dean that FoxNews “did something that was absolutely racist” by airing the Shirley Sherrod video and story. But Kaine also didn’t rule it out. Kaine told CNSNews.com at a news conference Wednesday, “It is outrageous that there was this effort to brand her and use her to suggest that she and others were being divisive.”

Administration Stresses Pakistani Cooperation, But Haqqani Threat Persists
(CNSNews.com)
– Administration officials and senior military officers are emphasizing that Pakistan’s cooperation in routing terrorists has improved significantly in the last 18 months, but the ongoing threats posed by the Taliban faction known as the Haqqani network shows there is a long way to go. Despite tens of thousands of leaked U.S. military documents alleging collaboration between members of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) and terrorists fighting coalition forces in Afghanistan, the administration insists Pakistan has changed direction.

Conservative Media Watchdog Issues Ethics Challenge to Washington Post
(CNSNews.com)
– Conservative media watchdog L. Brent Bozell III is calling on Washington Post Executive Editor Marcus Brauchli to fully divulge the involvement of several Post employees with the controversial Journolist e-mail list. The association, he said, puts the paper’s credibility and impartiality in doubt.

NY Congressman Calls for Probe of Funding for Mosque Near Ground Zero and Its Promoter
(CNSNews.com)
– Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) is calling for an investigation into the funding for a proposed Islamic community center at Ground Zero, as well as the imam who is promoting the project. “I think we should investigate the imam who is going to be at that mosque,” King said. “He is portrayed as being a moderate, a bridge builder. The fact is he was on television after 9/11 saying the U.S. brought this on themselves.”

No abortion funding – ‘an empty promise’
Irrespective of a presidential executive order and rule rewriting ordered by America’s Health and Human Services secretary, healthcare reform does provide for tax-funded abortions — so says a government report.

Perspective: The enablers of Charlie Rangel
Drain the swamp? Lead the most ethical Congress in history? House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is the world’s worst cleaning lady.

Obama’s ‘credibility gap’
President Obama recently spoke at a town hall meeting where he told his listeners that “things could be worse,” but a dean of a major university says he doesn’t understand how.

‘Modern family’ film not all right
Focus on the Family’s Plugged In is raising a warning flag about a movie called The Kids are All Right, which is making its way into American theatres.

Perspective: Knowing your enemy
Only three Americans doubt that terrorist acts plotted against Americans have been inspired by the Muslim call for jihad — unfortunately, they’re all in the White House.

GOP: Obama developing ‘backdoor amnesty plan’
The Obama administration is considering ways it could go around lawmakers to let illegal immigrants stay in the United States, according to an agency memo.

Another Democrat facing ethics charges
A second House Democrat, Rep. Maxine Waters of California, could be facing an ethics trial this fall, further complicating the midterm election outlook for the party as it battles to hold onto its majority.

Outrage over local salaries
Residents of a California city are outraged after learning of the high salaries their city council members make by working for a town where many live in poverty.

U.S. adoption market on the rise
Bethany Christian Services, the nation’s largest adoption agency, is reporting a higher interest in adoptions.

A papal first
Church officials say Catholics will have to pay admission of up to $39 to attend two of the public events in England to be led by Pope Benedict XVI during his visit in September.

‘Vampire’ Author Anne Rice ‘Quits’ Christianity
Interview with the Vampire author Anne Rice declared Wednesday that she “quit being Christian.”

Evangelical Body: Cancel ‘Burn a Quran’ Day

Baptists from 105 Countries Unite in Honolulu

House Bill Seeks to Permanently Ban Abortion Funding

Progressive Christian Weighs In on Influence of Religious Left

Suspected Islamists Shoot 5 Christians to Death in Pakistan

One Blood

December 7, 2009 at 5:21 pm | Posted in Christianity | Leave a comment
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I’ve been pondering something that I’ve seen happen a lot since I’ve been alive and it’s increased lately with the new president and administration. When America was founded, it was founded as a haven for Christians. Because of its Christian roots, as it grew, it became known as a melting pot. It was a place where anyone, regardless of color, race, creed, etc. could have the opportunity to excel and prosper. They could have the opportunity to build the life they dreamed of in freedom and safety.

Continue Reading One Blood…


Entries and comments feeds.

%d bloggers like this: