Newslinks 01/30/11

January 31, 2011 at 3:33 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Sunday’s Newslinks brought to you by At Ease Tees

Republican-Controlled Congressional Committee Targets United Nations
(CNSNews.com) – Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), the new chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, is holding a hearing Tuesday entitled “The United Nations: Urgent Problems that Need Congressional Action,” featuring some the U.N.’s most outspoken critics. Ros-Lehtinen in 2007 and again in 2009 championed legislation that linked U.S. funding to the U.N. to wide-ranging reforms. Funding of the U.N. is expected to feature prominently at the hearing.

Three SEIU Locals, Including Chicago Chapter, Waived From Obamacare Requirement
(CNSNews.com) – Three local chapters of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU)–whose political action committee spent $27 million supporting Barack Obama in the 2008 presidential election–have received temporary waivers from a provision in the Obamacare law. The waivers allow health insurance plans to limit how much they will spend on a policy holder’s medical coverage for a given year.

Leaked Negotiation Papers Undermine Palestinian Maneuvering at U.N.
(CNSNews.com) – A Palestinian Authority plan to push for a U.N. Security Council resolution condemning Israeli settlement activity was dramatically upstaged Sunday by the embarrassing leak of secret P.A. negotiating records. The documents reveal P.A. positions on key issues – such as the future of Jerusalem and refugees — that differ significantly from the stances it takes publicly.

Share of Fed Income Swallowed by Deficit-Coverage Borrowing Jumps 566% in 3 Years, IRS Reports
(CNSNews.com) – The federal government’s reliance on borrowed money to carry out its functions more than doubled between fiscal year 2008 and 2009, according to the IRS. And between fiscal year 2007 and 2009, borrowing as a percentage of federal income increased by 566 percent. Continue Reading Newslinks 01/30/11…

Newslinks 11/21/10

November 21, 2010 at 11:23 am | Posted in Newslinks | Leave a comment
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Sunday’s Newslinks brought to you by At Ease Tees

Obama’s Asia Trip Not Seen As a Success
(CNSNews.com)
– As he ended a 10-day visit to Asia, President Obama told reporters on Air Force One he believed that “all of Asia is eager for American engagement and leadership,” but his upbeat assessment sharply contrasted with the view of critics who have characterized the trip as disappointing – if not a downright failure.

Q&A With Virginia Attorney General: State’s Lawsuit Against Obamacare ‘Is Not About Health Insurance, It’s About Liberty’
(CNSNews.com)
– Virginia Atty. Gen. Ken Cuccinelli told CNSNews.com that the lawsuit his state has filed against the health-care reform law signed by President Barack Obama in March is about preserving the liberty of individual Americans against a federal government that is over-reaching its legitimate constitutional authority.

Obama’s Claiming More Power Over Americans Than King George III, Says Virginia Attorney General
(CNSNews.com) – Virginia Atty. Gen. Ken Cuccinelli, who has filed a federal lawsuit seeking to overturn the health-care law signed by President Barack Obama last March, says Obama and the Congress that enacted that law–which mandates that individuals must buy government-approved health insurance plans–are seeking a power over the lives of Americans that even King George III did not claim to possess. Continue Reading Newslinks 11/21/10…

Newslinks 11/14/10

November 14, 2010 at 9:10 pm | Posted in Newslinks | 2 Comments
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Sunday’s Newslinks brought to you by At Ease Tees

Republican Co-Author of Incandescent-Bulb Ban Seeks Chair of House Energy Committee
(CNSNews.com)
– Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) may have some explaining to do to fellow GOP colleagues as he seeks the chairmanship of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, given the incoming wave of new conservatives who may not appreciate some aspects of Upton’s voting record.

House G.O.P. Promises Open Amendment Process on all Spending Legislation
(CNSNews.com)
– Once Republicans take control of the House of Representatives in January, even minority Democrats will be able to offer amendments to reduce spending for all spending legislation that comes before the chamber — something that was not allowed under House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

Planned Parenthood Seeks Donations after GOP Electoral Gains, Even as Group Gets Millions in Taxpayer Dollars
(CNSNews.com)
– In a letter sent to supporters by e-mail on the day after Republicans were swept in as the new majority in the House of Representatives and gained seats in the Senate, Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards used the election results to press for an “emergency donation” to help fight against “dangerous politicians who oppose women’s health and the right to choose.”

Pakistan Happier Than India With Obama’s Comments on Terror
(CNSNews.com)
– In his comments on terrorism delivered at Mumbai’s Taj Mahal Hotel – the location of a deadly attack two year ago – President Obama dismayed many in India by making no mention of Pakistan. Continue Reading Newslinks 11/14/10…

Newslinks 10/24/10

October 24, 2010 at 8:24 pm | Posted in Newslinks | Leave a comment
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Sunday’s Newslinks brought to you by At Ease Tees

 

National Debt Increases for 53rd Straight Fiscal Year; Jumped $1.65 Trillion in FY 2010
(CNSNews.com)
– The national debt increased for the 53rd straight fiscal year in fiscal 2010, when it jumped $1.65 trillion, according to data posted online by the Bureau of the Public Debt and confirmed by a spokesperson for the agency. The bureau says its reporting of the federal debt at the end of each fiscal year (as posted here) states exactly to the penny the full and actual amount the U.S. government has borrowed as of that date.

Value-Added Tax Would Hurt Economy, Kill Jobs, Business Group Study Finds
(CNSNews.com)
– An economic analysis sponsored by the National Retail Federation shows that a Value-Added Tax would damage economic growth and kill hundreds of thousands of jobs. The study showed that a large reduction in federal spending would be better for the economy. President Obama’s Fiscal Commission reportedly is considering a VAT as one option for reigning in out-of-control federal deficits.

Iran Elected to Chair OPEC Next Year; Dismisses Western Energy Sanctions as Ineffective
(CNSNews.com)
– For the first time since the Islamic revolution, Iran has been handed the rotating presidency of the OPEC cartel of oil-producing nations. The move comes at a time when Western governments are seeking to target Iran’s energy sector over its nuclear programs. Iran is pushing for oil to be priced against a currency, or basket of currencies, other than the U.S. dollar. Continue Reading Newslinks 10/24/10…

Newslinks 09/05/10

September 5, 2010 at 9:54 pm | Posted in Newslinks | Leave a comment
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Sunday’s Newslinks brought to you by At Ease Tees

Work of Humanitarian Agencies Praised on 5th Anniversary of Katrina
Five years after Hurricanes Katrina devastated New Orleans and the Gulf Coast, survivors and those working on their behalf say work is far from finished.  increasing demand.

Disaffected Lutherans Constitute New Body

Presbyterian Court Rebukes Minister for Gay Weddings

D’Souza: Christians Need to Tackle Secular Culture from ‘Belly of Beast’

Beck: Most Americans Don’t Recognize Obama’s Christianity

Gov’t-Funded Study on Sex, Abstinence Released Following Protest Continue Reading Newslinks 09/05/10…

Newslinks 07/18/10

July 18, 2010 at 8:57 pm | Posted in Newslinks | Leave a comment
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Sunday’s Newslinks brought to you by At Ease Tees

PCUSA’s ‘gay’ measures reflect ‘modern paganism’
An Orthodox Church theologian who was invited to greet the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has criticized its approval of non-celibate homosexual clergy.

Zoning restrictions limit feeding homeless
Government bodies are making it difficult for volunteers to provide for the needs of the homeless at public sites or their own facilities, such as churches.

Appeal likely in ‘lunatic’ marriage rulings
Traditional marriage proponents are hopeful an appeal will be filed on federal court rulings in Massachusetts declaring part of the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional. An attorney with a traditional values legal firm is lambasting the court’s decision.

Transgender seeks millions for ‘distress’
A Maryland man who has made a physical change to the opposite gender has filed a lawsuit against his county for reaping “emotional distress.”

World Evangelical Alliance to Hold 2014 General Assembly in S. Korea
The World Evangelical Alliance will be holding its 2014 General Assembly in South Korea, according to an announcement Saturday. Continue Reading Newslinks 07/18/10…

The importance of family

March 15, 2010 at 4:07 pm | Posted in Christianity | Leave a comment
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As our nation and the world continue to struggle with societal woes, everyone rushes around searching for the answers. They run tests, perform studies, and survey people to find out what is going on. In all of this, they neglect the very thing that can help them fix all of the problems that we will ever face.

In America, the problems continue to grow as the government no longer cares to listen to the people it governs. Instead, it sits in its ivory tower with ears plugged and tells the country exactly what is best for it without having a shred of evidence that this is so. Meanwhile, the things that America so desperately needs continue to dwindle away to nothing. Those things that have made this nation what it is disappear at a growing rate, being eroded by the newest fad or the most recent study. One of the main things that is becoming endangered is the biblical family. Continue Reading The importance of family…

A gospel for all ages

March 9, 2009 at 6:30 am | Posted in Christianity | 2 Comments
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Our modern society is divided according to age. We have different categories that we tend to put people:

  • Babies
  • Children
  • Youth/teens
  • Adults
  • Elderly

 

Each group is expected to know certain things. Each group is separate from the other and to be affiliated with the wrong group can be offensive to some. This separation is also seen in the church. To see this, all you have to do is look at Sunday school. We have a class for babies and toddlers. We put children in another. The teens have their own class and, often, even adults have been split into groups depending on age, marital status, or gender. Why do we split ourselves into groups? When did we decide that this was good? I see some problems with this. First, each group begins to identify with their own group to the exclusion of others. They don’t learn to interact with those that are younger or older than they are. Many times, an older group will often look down on younger groups. This is most evident between the groups of children and teens, but can be seen in other groups as well.

 

One of the major problems that I see with this approach is that there seems to be a different gospel being preached to each group. Often, toddlers and babies don’t have the gospel to them at all. Our children have Bible “stories” with little substance. They hear about the main events in the Bible, but in a cartoony, unscriptural type of way. The see images of the ark where the animals are practically bulging out of the ship, they see images of Jesus even though we have no indication of what they look like. In these kids classes they often hear about five to ten minutes of a Bible story and the rest of the time they color or do crafts or play. The teen classes are often structured to be “cool”, “edgy”, “entertaining”, and “relevant”. Much of the time, there is very little time spent on truth and much more on entertainment. Much of the time, these classes are basically a weak attempt to try and keep the teens in church because most have heard that many of them will leave when they get to be adults. In all honesty, there was no such thing as a teenager before 1940. Before this time, you were either a child or an adult and the change often took place around age 13 (think of bar-mitzvahs and bat-mitzvahs).

 

Unfortunately, we tend to deceive ourselves and think that they are just kids and can’t see the façade of the church. They look at how the church tries to be like the world and they aren’t impressed. The world does the world better than the church does and when we’re trying to be like them instead of like Christ, the teens don’t receive what they need and we push them away. We don’t have any substance or backbone, and we can’t answer their questions (even though we’re supposed to be able to – 1 Pet. 3:15). This is why we’re losing so many of them to the world. We try to be relevant and they’re not impressed.

 

The adult classes are often focused on issues like finances, parenting, relationships, and marriage. They are many times split into men and women. The elderly classes are often focused on comfort and seem to be the most Word-focused classes in our churches. I would guess that this is because they were actually raised by men and women who valued the Word more than anything else.

 

Many may be asking whether or not this is bad. I would say that it’s not bad all the time. It can be good to separate for certain things, but I don’t know that it should be the norm. The truth is that the gospel should be the same regardless of what age the participants are. They should hear about sin and hell as well as love, mercy, and grace. I’m sure that this would cause many in the church to gawk. What we need to remember is that salvation does not come from our kids coloring a picture of Jesus, building an ark from popsicle sticks, or sitting in a relevant class that talks about teen issues. Salvation comes alone from when we preach the gospel. It comes from when we tell them the truth and don’t pull any punches about sin or judgment. Some might disagree with me and say that we need to present the gospel in understandable way. I don’t disagree with this at all, but I would have to say that the method or way of presenting the gospel in no way has to affect the truth of it. Let me give an example:

 

My daughter and I went to dinner together about two years ago. While we were talking about different things, I felt the urge to witness to her. What was I going to say? She’s a seven year old. I had just started learning about the biblical method of witnessing to others from Way of the Master. This method basically goes through the law with someone to show him or her what sin is and then shows him or her that God will judge lawbreakers. It then finishes with God’s mercy and the legal transaction of the cross. I decided that I would do this with my daughter. I began to run down the Ten Commandments in my mind. I didn’t feel comfortable about talking to her about adultery or lust. I chose to focus on lying. I explained to her about lying and how it was a violation of His law. I explained to her that God is not happy with her if she’s told lies. I told her that if someone has broken God’s law, He would not let her enter heaven. After a few more minutes of talking about lies, sin, and the cross, she asked me if we could talk about something else. I let it go and decided that I would keep an eye out for another opportunity. We ate dinner, spent some time together, and then I took her home.

 

The next day, I got a call saying that my daughter had talked to her mom about lying and sin. She had decided that she wanted to be saved and not long after, she was baptized.

 

This experience between my daughter and I didn’t happen because of me. It happened because the Holy Spirit was able to take the truth that I shared with my daughter and use it to prick her conscience and lead her to Christ. If this can happen with a seven year old, then why do we waste our time with them coloring and playing? We should be honest with our kids. There is nothing wrong with simplifying our explanations (when needed) but we cannot simplify the message or water it down to make it palatable to everyone.

 

If I have any teen readers I’ll probably lose them with this next statement. Teens don’t exist. They should be taught the same truth the adults are. I honestly don’t see any reason why teens can’t sit in on adult classes. I don’t see any reason why they can’t grasp the truth. I can’t help but wonder if we have underestimated our youth and their ability to grow in holiness or understand the truth. I think that we do them a great disservice. Many teens are hungry for something more than what their churches are giving them. They are looking for something with substance and when they can’t find it in the church, they go to look for it in the world! They are leaving because we don’t give them what they are hungry for and what they need. 

 

The gospel of Jesus Christ is a gospel for all ages. It is not just for adults or those we think are ready for it. It should be preached to our kids as soon as possible and as much as possible. This should happen not just until they’re saved but it should be done just as much (if not more) after they are saved to remind them of what Jesus has done for them.


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