Friday, August 31, 2012
1900 A LITTLE CROW?
I caught part of the Repub convention last night.
I haven’t been following it- but I found the coverage very interesting last night.
I have been a critic of MSNBC and Chris Matthews over the years.
But- to his credit- I thought he did a great job last night.
Why? Because he made the conservative points?
But he did indeed differ with the others and defended Jeb Bush who made the conservative argument about school vouchers.
Vouchers are funds that you could use to send your kid to the school of your choice.
The way it is supposed to work is if you’re a poor mom- maybe a single Black mother living in a tough inner city area.
You could apply for the voucher and send your son/daughter to a better school then she would normally have access to.
Now- there are those against this and for it- and like most things- if your hear one side only- well you begin to say ‘o- I see your point’.
Then you might hear the other side and say the same thing.
My point is Matthews did take the voucher side- and to the obvious dismay of his liberal panel [Sharpton, Maddow, etc.] he knew he was in the minority.
I also liked the view that Matthews and Sharpton took about Romney’s Mormonism.
They were consistent and said it is wrong to go after him on that.
I caught CNN and Fox- all in all- I was happy to see that their coverage- even though they all play sides at times- was pretty fair.
Why was I glad to see this?
Because whoever wins this election- the next president will have to try his best to govern a very divided nation.
And it will be hard- for either side- to do this if the losing side [whoever it be] simply spends the next 4 years trying to make the winner fail.
This last year I have criticized the president lots- and I have done the same with Bush in the past [mainly over the wars].
But there have been things that I credit Obama for.
As a big news buff- one of the geopolitical issues that came up was this Pakistani road that we used to get supplies to our troops fighting in the border region of Afghanistan/Pakistan.
We had an incident where we accidently bombed the wrongs guys- we killed a bunch of Pakistani troops- thinking they were Taliban.
Now- Pakistan has not been the best ally in this whole war in Afghanistan.
And make no mistakes about it- we buy their support with tons of money.
But- when we killed their troops- they had it.
They shut down this vital road for our supplies and refused to re open it unless that got an official apology.
They wanted the U.S. [Obama] to apologize during a campaign year- when the opposing side were accusing him of being weak in the world- and making apologies to other nations.
So- instead of apologizing- the U.S. spent millions of more dollars- every week [day?] flying and using other ways to get the support to our troops.
Now- the Pakistanis did indeed charge us lots for the use of the road- but these other options were much more expensive.
So what happened?
One week- after months of the stalemate- Hilary Clinton made the apology with the approval of Obama.
Yeah- he did the right thing- and that was that.
Now- he could have just spent the extra millions and not apologized.
But I’m sure he consulted with the military brass- and they gave him the frank advice that it would be better to get the road back.
He did the right thing- not the most expedient thing- not the thing that would help his election the most.
No- he did the right thing.
If Romney wins- or Obama gets re-elected- they will need the support of the people to do ‘the right thing’.
They will need to have some consensus- some middle ground- to fix the things that are really broken in this country.
And we won’t be able to do that if we continue to simply hate the other side.
I was very impressed with the cordial coverage that the networks gave to Romney.
And I trust they will do the same with the president’s convention.
Yeah- I must admit that Chris Matthews was a real news man last night.
Kudos’ to him and MSNBC [geez- I hate the taste of crow!]
Note- Do me a favor, those who read/like the posts- re-post them on other sites as well as the site you read them on. Thanks- John. Don’t forget to scroll down on the timeline [Facebook] - I have posted lots.
Thursday, August 30, 2012
This week I met John at the mission.
Maybe the last 2 weeks?
Anyway- when he first showed up he just looked like one of the new guys that shows up every so often.
You have people from all over that gravitate to the shore regions of the country- and we are one of those spots.
John was a little different- he had this cute Chewowa [sp?] dog- named Gizmo- and he is a ‘jolly’ type fella.
So- to some- they might paint John as gay- you know- loving on this little dog- jolly.
Now- if he were- I wouldn’t care- I mean I still be-friend people from all backgrounds- and I forgot to mention this in the post I did about race.
That a couple years back there was a nice Black kid- he came from a ministry background [family started churches and stuff all over the area].
One day I took him shopping- to the grocery store- we had a couple of other street guys.
Sometimes I’ll take the guys to the store and let them buy some stuff they need [on my debit card].
But Tracy basically food shopped.
Tracy is also gay.
It was quite expensive.
The other guys got mad ‘hey- John pays for this out of his pocket’.
Sometimes people think I have some type of ‘ministry fund’ and they might spend more than they need.
I just went with it- I was broke for the rest of the month- but what the heck.
So- just wanted to defend myself a little- being I do write on race issues- yet I believe in helping all types- even gay friends.
So- even if this new guy was gay- I don’t judge him.
But- as I talked with ‘jolly John’ I came to find out he’s not gay- but a widower.
John was a plumber for 35 years- lived in Arlington [Texas- the city where the Texas rangers come out of].
A few years ago his wife got real sick- and in October of last year she took her own life.
John always wanted to live near the ocean- he sold everything he had and spent the money coming to Corpus.
He got a job right away- working right by the mission for a mechanic shop.
Yesterday I took my van for an inspection- sure enough he was there.
So right off the bat I know John is different- lots of the guys have stories- but to put it bluntly- they don’t want to work.
This is a real problem for sure- and when you read all my posts defending the poor- don’t confuse that with thinking I’m defending able bodied people- who are not working.
No- I try to spend my money helping people who are not on the free programs- or who are really in need.
Yeah- I have given to those who I probably shouldn’t have- but all in all I am against guys just living off the free dole- when they need to work.
So- John has a good job- and he’s saving up for a cheap apartment.
He told me he’s living in the broken down car wash that’s attached to the mechanic shop.
For you local friends- he works at Fast Trax- in the Bluff- right by the HEB parking lot.
John sleeps there with his little dog- Gizmo [I’ll try and post some pics this morning?]
Yeah- John has an interesting story- a hard working man- who came upon hard times- and wound up ‘on the street’ at least for a little while.
It would be easy to look at John and judge him- I mean he is eating at the free mission [I never eat the free food by the way].
And he is a big boy- overweight- and admits it.
So- at first glance you could peg him as a freeloader who refuses to work.
When John told me about his wife taking her life- John cried.
I felt bad for him- he seems like a very nice guy.
As I sat in the shop waiting for my inspection- sure enough- his little dog Gizmo is chained up to a chair in the waiting area.
The poor baby is shaking- you know how those little pups shake- and I guess he sits by himself all day.
He’s just staring at the door where his ‘daddy’ walked thru- hoping he comes back.
Kinda sad story to be honest.
Yet John has this happy go lucky way about him- he laughs and jokes at the mission.
He lets his little puppy lay on him- he’s really an interesting guy.
John is one story- one friend- out of hundreds- maybe thousands of friends I have made over the years.
Yeah- there have been times where some of ‘my friends’ were people that others would not be around.
Dangerous type people.
Others are like John- just a good person who fell on bad times.
I have a verse posted here right behind me.
It says ‘she that tarried at home divided the spoils’.
It’s in the book of Psalms.
I posted it a few years ago- right behind the chair I’m sitting on right now while I blog.
To me it says there will be friends who read these posts- and maybe they will never see the John’s of the world.
Maybe they will live their lives as most people do.
Good lives- working- raising kids- things that are noble and good.
But to these friends- the verse I just quoted is very important.
It tells me that God intended for some of our ‘community’ to ‘stay at home and have a part’.
To you- most of you are women- don’t underestimate the need to pray for me and my friends.
I have gone thru the Gospel of Matthew- Acts- Romans and am in Corinthians right now.
Yes- I am a big bible reader- as well as a writer on all the other things.
The Apostle Paul was used by God- and in most [if not all?] of his writings- he says ‘please don’t forget to pray for me’.
For those who can- those who tarry at home- try and pray the ‘Our Father’ every day for me and my friends.
It might not seem much to you- but to be honest- I think it at times it has saved my life.
Thanks- from John- John- and oh yeah- little Gizmo.
Note- Do me a favor, those who read/like the posts- re-post them on other sites as well as the site you read them on. Thanks- John. Don’t forget to scroll down on the timeline [Facebook] - I have posted lots.
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
I got with the street guys the other day.
Every so often one of the guys gets in the mood to ask me stuff- things about the bible- things they have questions about.
Hugh sat down next to me and asked me a few things.
It was funny- because I was just posting about Greek gods and all- and he asked me if there was a goddess that’s mentioned in the bible.
I told him there was- in the book of Acts it talks about ‘the great goddess Diana’.
It was a reference to the idol that was set up in the city of Ephesus.
The reason I mentioned this was Hugh told me ‘John- I like talking to you about this stuff- you know the answers [most of the time] but you don’t try and make us believe everything your way’.
Hugh and Andy and John David- all brothers that I have written about over the years- they grew up in a preachers home.
They had experiences with many preachers over the years- and they are familiar with men- good men- but men who see things a certain way- and they often demand that others see it to.
When Hugh made the above statement- I didn’t tell him this- but his brother Andy- who is a very able bible person- had told me the same exact thing a few years ago.
Before I write in the morning- I quote a verse from the book of James.
‘let every man be swift to hear- slow to speak- slow to wrath- for the wrath of man does not work the righteousness of God’.
Last night I caught about 5 minutes of MSNBC- and I need this verse because of them.
Rachel Maddow was ‘covering’ the campaign of Romney- and she went on to say that who would ever believe that in this day and age- a candidate for president would run his whole campaign on being anti black.
She went on and said Romney is targeting the racist white vote- that this is blatant and open.
As I watch these race cards being played- another MSNBC host said Romney was calling the president a Nigger.
Yes- Toure’- a regular on the network- said when Romney used the word ‘angry’ twice in a row- that he ‘niggerized’ Obama.
I heard a few actual quotes this past week- actual recordings from the 2008 campaign.
‘He knew he was going to play the race card- we now have the proof that he did this on purpose’.
Who said this?
He was referring to some memo that leaked our – Clinton said it proved that this was calculated.
‘Obama- you say you want to run a clean campaign- but your actions are not in line with your words- Shame on you- shame on you’.
When you see the person saying it- she’s outraged.
Who said it?
I think it’s sad that any side would resort to stuff like this.
This is not new [unless you believe that Bill and Hillary were lying].
Okay- the other day when I posted the pic of the Jesus head carving [Facebook] I wasn’t sure if I should tell this or not.
But I got up at midnight again- and when I was just praying before I post- I felt it was time.
The reason I went down the road that the Re sale shop was on- was because that part of town is a very bad place to be.
Normally- White folk don’t go there.
Many years ago [18?] I had a bad year.
I hung out with drug addicts- and partied in the bars that were right off the street where I bought the carving.
As I was standing on the street that day- waiting for the owner to get to the shop- I had about 20 minutes or so of just being there.
As I looked east- I saw a club called Ceilo- where a shooting just happened a few nights before.
I thought about the nights when I was in another club just like it- on the same block.
I was the only English speaking person in the place- including the bar tender.
One night as the guys were ‘shooting up’- somehow the conversation got into God.
When I told one of the guys I used to preach- he said he felt God sent me- that in a way he thought even though drugs were all over the room- yet he thought God sent me.
Many nights I would be up all night- and drive home at around 6 in the morning [an hour drive to Kingsville].
I would get home just in time to put on my uniform and go to work.
There’s a song that’s been playing on the Christian station these last few days- it says we are all on borrowed time.
As I stood on the corner that day- right across the street there was this Mexican guy.
So- being I’m waiting for the owner of the shop to show up- I figured I might as well do some outreach.
So- I yelled ‘hey brother- you need a few dollars’.
I just wanted to spread the wealth round.
He looked at me for a second- and I wasn’t sure he understood English.
So I started walking towards him- and I was taking my wallet out- you know- to say ‘look- do you need a couple of bucks’.
I guess he saw me reaching for the wallet- and maybe thought I had a gun.
He turned the other way and started walking- real fast.
At this point I was laughing- yeah- out loud.
I grabbed my trusty cell phone camera and took a couple of pics- was gonna post them but they came out bad.
Over the years I have had Mexican friends- Black friends- all races.
God’s kingdom is color blind- we are here for a very short while.
It gets me mad to see the race card played- I know racism exists- it inside White people- Black people- it’s comes in every color.
When we as a society play the card so freely- we damage each other.
We give people excuses to hate other people.
Yes- some people hate Obama because of his color- but most of those who disagree with him do so because of his politics.
If people don’t like Romney- then ‘don’t like him’ because of his too.
But when you say he ‘niggerized’ the campaign because he used the word ‘angry’ twice- then you are not contributing to the overall healing of our land.
Remember- short time- let’s not waste it on stuff like this.
Note- Do me a favor, those who read/like the posts- re-post them on other sites as well as the site you read them on. Thanks- John. Don’t forget to scroll down on the timeline [Facebook] - I have posted lots.
Thursday, August 23, 2012
1897 WHITE’S CREATED AIDS TO KILL BLACKS
Okay- we spent the last few days talking about the Todd Akin comment.
Akin is running for senator in Mo.
He said that ‘legitimate rape RARELY produces a pregnancy- because a woman’s body has ways of shutting that stuff down’.
So- the national media has spent days on this.
Last night I caught a short clip of ABC world news with Dianne Sawyer.
It teased an upcoming special 2 DAY coverage of Mormonism.
So- I figured instead of my usual channel surfing- I would watch the entire 30 minutes of ABC news at 5:30.
It was revealing.
For their political coverage- they showed a few negative ads about Ryan/Romney [none of Obama].
They covered the abortion views of Ryan.
Then they said ‘okay- that’s it for political coverage’.
Was that political coverage?
It was free ad time for the President.
Many of the web ad’s that are produced- by both sides- only produce them for the purpose of various media outlets picking them up and showing them on their shows.
Yes- nothing wrong with the strategy.
But- when the so called unbiased media only plays the ads of one side- they are spending hundreds of thousands giving free ad time to one side.
What about the Mormon coverage?
ABC began a 2 night ‘world coverage’ of Mormonism.
Like I said before- I am very aware of their teaching- I have Mormon friends- but quite frankly- the media realize that if they high light the religious beliefs of Romney- it will hurt him.
So- during the coverage they used words like-
‘strange- peculiar’ [fits in with MSNBC’S mantra of referring to Romney as weird- member of a cult]
‘all male leaders’
Now- you might ask ‘so John- if these things are true- then what’s wrong with the media exposing it’.
That’s the point.
When President Obama was running in 2008- his church background had almost no coverage at all.
The little coverage it did get was by Fox- or those in the media saying his religion is off grounds.
Matthews [MSNBC] kept accusing the conservatives of imposing a ‘religious test’ on Obama.
So- the church Obama belonged to was a Black Liberation church.
Now- for the record- much of what you read on my site has a very strong strain of liberation theology in it.
Yes- my defense of the poor- the illegal alien- many of my themes are indeed found in liberation theology movements.
In the past I covered this teaching- how it rose from the Catholic bishops in Latin America- how the Catholic church had debates within their church over it.
All in all- in some ways I actually defended Liberation Theology- and even Rev Wright [to a degree].
So- having said that- what were some of the beliefs of Obama’s church?
Rev Wright [Obama’s pastor for 20 years] believed that AIDS was created by the White man [the govt.] for the purpose of infecting Blacks to kill them.
Wright worked closely with Farrakhan in Chicago- and they often espoused hatred for the White race.
How much of this did you ever see on the news?
Did ABC do a 2 night ‘world coverage’ of the ‘strange beliefs’ of Obama’s church?
Now- how much of this affected the President?
Obama’s defense was he never heard Wright say any stuff like this- though he said Wright was one of the most influential men in his life.
He was married by Wright.
Wright baptized his kids.
And Obama titled one of his books after a phrase from the pastor [The Audacity of Hope].
Now- as a listener of both the right and left- I also get to hear [radio] stuff that you don’t hear on the news.
These are actual quotes from President Obama
‘White man’s greed rules a world in need’ [he was quoting from his own book- he did an audio version of it]
‘White’s move into the suburbs because they don’t want to pay for the education of inner city kids’
Does he really believe this?
If you are White- and you move out of the city- he says you did this because you are racist.
Not because you want to escape the crime- pollution- have a better school for your kids.
No- according to the Presidents own words- it’s because you don’t want your money going to educate inner city kids [mostly Black kids].
Why are these actual quotes important?
They show you that the beliefs of rev. Wright did indeed affect the President.
Yet- you never heard any of this from the media- they would not dare cover the religious beliefs of Obama.
They said it was outrageous that anyone would ask.
As I watched last night- I was reminded of all the comments I heard these past few weeks by the media.
Bashir [MSNBC] said outright that Christians should not vote for Romney because he denies the Trinity.
A major Democrat funder said Romney does not give to charity- but to ‘his cult’.
On and on.
I personally do not believe we should pick a candidate because of his faith.
Other Christians do indeed differ- I have friends who will not vote for Romney because he is Mormon.
The point I’m making is this is what you call media bias.
You would never see a so called news man say ‘you should not vote for Obama because he is a Black Liberation Christian’.
Now- you will hear that from others- but never from the news itself.
Yet- we have heard all of the above from so called main stream news sources.
If we- as Citizens- are expected to make informed votes- then we either need to know all of the above- about both sides- or none of the above- about both sides.
I assure you- if the world news covered the statements- of the president himself- and the beliefs of the church he attended for 20 years.
That the 2008 election would have been much different.
But the media had their man- and they did all they could to cover him in a favorable light.
Now- they are covering his challenger in an unfavorable one.
They are outright saying he is a cult member- that he denies the Trinity- that his church is strange- weird.
They are covering Romney’s religion nonstop.
Yet- the church belief that the White man created AIDS to kill Blacks- well that’s a personal religious belief.
We have no right to know that.
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
1896 SIGNS OF THE TIMES
‘Our holy and our beautiful house, where our fathers praised thee- is burned up with fire’ Isaiah 64:11.
Yesterday I mentioned that I watched a couple of negative documentaries about Christianity- they were done from the extreme skeptic’s perspective.
In these types of shows they usually have a few Christians/preachers that they portray as idiots.
In some cases- we can’t help ourselves!
One of the scenes was this group of protestant Christians traveling to Israel on a holy land tour.
When they are at the site of the temple mount [a real big deal for certain protestants- called Dispensationalists].
The pastor is speaking- very loudly- and quoting Jesus from Matthew 24.
He says ‘Jesus said there would be no stone left upon another- he meant it- all these stones will come down’!
Now- I know he meant well- and it must have felt exhilarating for him to kind of be standing up for Jesus- but we all know that there is this huge gold mosque sitting right at the spot where the temple used to be.
And this is where- for some Protestants- the rubber meets the road.
The above verse comes from the Old Testament prophet- the people of God [Israel] were being judged- they lost their homeland and eventually their holy temple would be destroyed.
Over a period of time they would return to their land and the temple would be re built.
During the days of Jesus you had a 3rd temple- even though the 2nd rebuilt one was never destroyed- yet Herod [the father of king Herod whom we read about in the bible] would undergo this huge rebuilding project- and he turned the temple of Jesus day into this huge majestic place.
So- when the disciples were with Jesus one day [matt 24] they said ‘look at all these great buildings Jesus’.
And that’s when he gave the response ‘their will not be left one stone upon another that shall not be cast down’.
This event took place in the year AD 70- the Roman general Titus would sack Jerusalem and the temple was cast down- there was not ‘one stone left on another’ literally.
After the destruction- many went in and searched thru the rubble for the gold that melted and fell between the stones- they actually laid every stone bare during this process.
So- the actual words the minister quoted from Jesus- these words were not defending the glory of the temple- which in Christ’s day came to represent religion apart from God.
No- the words of Jesus were actually a rebuke to those who put too much emphasis on the temple itself [which just happened to be the camp that the above minister was in- ouch!]
Christians do have a problem with stuff like this- lots.
I also caught a few preaching shows over the past week- and many of them had the same theme.
One man was ranting against Muslims- he was quoting verses in the Bible that talk about avoiding the evil person.
I actually just posted on this a few weeks ago.
These verses come from the Apostle Paul’s pen- in his letter to the church at Corinth.
He was not saying to have no contact with unbelievers [or people of other faiths]- he was talking about ‘church members’ who were living in open sin.
I got into it the other day- don’t want to rehash it again.
The point was- even though this minister meant well- he was giving the opinion that Christians should have no peaceful dealings with Muslims- or any other religion for that matter.
Is this right?
The bible says we should live peaceably with all men.
In the Old Testament we read the story of Joseph.
He became the second most powerful figure in the land of Egypt- only Pharaoh was over him.
Joseph was living- and functioning- in the midst of the Egyptian people- who did indeed have different religious beliefs than Joseph.
Yet we read how Joseph earned great respect from the Egyptians- and when Joseph’s dad died [Jacob- who was named Israel] they respected the wishes of Joseph and even mourned with him.
Now- this is a great example of believers having friends- functioning in society- without purposefully offending people.
I do not claim to have perfect understanding about the end times- but I do see some major flaws with what most people think about when they hear ‘end times’.
Many Christians see a future restoration of the temple in Jerusalem.
They see a huge problem that the mosque sits on the temple site- and they have various scenarios to see the thing removed.
These same believers- all good people mind you- also see Jesus restoring the sacrificial system- and him ruling over Jerusalem- with the sacrifices taking place once again.
In the book of Hebrews- in our bibles- the writer says ‘those who continue the sacrificial system- after the crucifixion of Christ- are doing disgrace to the Cross of Christ.’
Theologically- the above end time’s scenario does much harm to the basic message of the Cross.
Geopolitically- it spells disaster.
Monday, August 20, 2012
1895- BUYER BEWARE!
We bought the Rocu thing the other day.
That’s the device that lets you watch movies on line.
You get a lot of real good stuff- I was surprised.
I was also surprised to see all the documentaries about religion and Christianity.
The ones from Netflix looked interesting- so I watched a couple.
All of the ones I saw were done from a skeptic’s point of view.
Now- as someone who writes on apologetics [the defense of the faith] I am familiar with these arguments against the faith.
But- if you are not familiar- these doc’s will shake your faith- for sure.
They are done from the perspective that Christianity basically copied the Greek myths of God and religion- they focus on the ‘similarities’ between Christianity and Greek [and other cultures] religions.
Okay- what was wrong- or deceptive?
First- this entire school of thought was popularized in the 19th century- from the Christian universities in Germany.
Yes- some good men- well meaning men [others not so good! Freud- etc] believed that in order for the faith to survive in this ‘brave new world’ [modernity- and the whole humanistic advance of man since the enlightenment].
That they had to re-fashion the faith and sort of bring it up to date with the times.
Men like Rudolph Bultman introduced the idea of ‘de mythologizing’ the bible.
So- these guys rejected all the supernatural elements of the bible- no more miracles- angels- demons- or resurrection!
Many people embraced this ‘new’ bold approach to the faith- and basically became theological liberals.
One of the reasons some of these men went down this road were covered in the above documentaries.
Okay- as I watched a couple of them- they had similar themes- and were also wrong in the same way.
They compared about 25 other religious myths- from other cultures- and they said these other religious myths all had a savior- a son of god- who had 12 disciples.
They said this Lamb of God died- was buried- and on the 3rd day rose again.
They said he did miracles- was born of a virgin- was called Lord and savior.
And they made it sound like this ‘story’- in complete form- was repeated many times before the Christians ‘picked it up’.
Wow- double wow.
Why are these documentaries dangerous?
First- I actually have read/studied in this field.
The similarities that they described in the doc’s were way overdone- they simply are not true.
That’s the first problem.
But- they did mix in some truth- with the false stuff.
Both of the documentaries I saw [it seems like there is one person- producer- behind the 2 I saw] did give an actual quote from a 2nd century Christian leader- Justin Martyr.
The quote is indeed real- Justin is known as one of the first Apologists of the church.
He defended the faith during a time when many enemies of the faith slandered the religion.
In one defense [out of many] he said that those who reject Christianity because we believe that a Divine son rose from the dead- that others also held the same type of belief in the pagan world.
He was referring to the god Jupiter and the stories that surround those who believed in him.
You also do find this same type of thing in the myth of Hercules.
Okay- so the skeptic was right then?
In the documentary- the skeptic actually gives the quote from Justin- and Justin says that just because these similarities did exist in other religions- before Christ- that this in no way means the Christian faith is false.
Justin said it was possible for satan to have ‘imitated’ what was really going to happen.
The skeptic mocked this argument from Justin- and went on to challenge the faith.
A few things.
First- it is possible that Justin was right.
This whole line of attack is not new [unless you never heard of it before- which is why I’m kinda surprised that Netflix has them in their lineup].
It goes all the way back to the writings of Gilgamesh.
These are writings that also have similarities to the things we find in the bible- yet they are not coming from the Christian perspective.
They contain a story about a flood [like the one in Genesis].
So- over time- skeptics have said ‘see- the bible must have copied these flood stories- because we find them in other cultures’.
I actually covered this before.
Let me give you the short version.
We- as Christians- do indeed believe the story of Noah [the flood].
Some debate whether it was a global event or local- I don’t want to get into that now.
But- if there was a huge event- say like a 911 plane attack on the world trade center.
Would you not expect to find that event- recorded in more than one culture?
Of course you would.
So the fact that other cultures have a flood event recorded too- this does not mean the Christians plagiarized the flood- no- it would be evidence that the flood really did happen.
Now- the similarities between a divine son who rose from the dead.
First- there ARE NOT 25 or so stories like this- with 12 disciples- raised on the 3rd day- and so on.
The producer of the doc was simply mislead- or outright lying.
We must remember that anything we find in Greek culture- which predated Christian ‘culture’ was also predated by Jewish culture.
That is to say that the story of Judaism comes before the Greek philosophers.
Are there any themes in the Jewish religion that speak about a Messiah who would come- die- and be the Messiah of all mankind?
So- you could argue that any similarities between Greek myth- and Christianity- are actually ‘copies’ taken from the Old Testament story.
That is- God himself gave us clues about the story of redemption- and these clues might have very well ‘seeped’ into the Greek culture- before Christ- and that’s why you might find similarities between the 2.
Okay- I could go on- but I think I made the point.
I was not mad that these documentaries were on net flix.
But I saw the danger in presenting one side like this- without giving the other view [which I just gave].
All in all- the Christian faith has more historical backing [like the many thousands of bible manuscripts that survived the early days] than any other religion or writings of any kind.
The documentaries made a couple of good points- things that were indeed true- but they had way too much mis information in them to be playing on such a huge venue.
Buyer [or watcher] beware!
Friday, August 17, 2012
1894 HEROD- FAME- AND ONE COOL DUDE
I mentioned the other day that some of the street guys said ‘wow- were gonna be famous’ when I told them I was gonna post their pics to the site.
The next day I was watching the local news- and they did a report about 2 guys getting arrested for peeing- on a cop car- at the police station.
So- whenever I see a news teaser like this [you know- ‘coming up next’] I think ‘geez- wonder if I know them’.
Sure enough- it was Albert and another guy that I just saw at the mission.
They did want to be famous.
Right after I posted yesterday- I read an article that backed up my suspicion.
It was so obvious it was funny.
I wrote that I saw an NBC news clip that portrayed Romney as this angry- mean- loser who can’t stand the heat.
Then- they spoke about Obama as a very calm- almost messianic figure.
So- right after the post I read my paper- there was a report by the AP [associated press].
Let me quote the first paragraph- it’s right here ‘Romney is portraying THE OUTWARDLY CALM PRESIDENT as a man seething with animosity and power lust as the Repubs seek to undermine one of the Dems greatest strengths- his PERSONAL LIKABILITY’.
I mean it’s so obvious- you can’t take these guys serious.
I was watching MSNBC- Matthews was responding to the court ruling that backed the Repub rule that in Pennsylvania you need to show voter I.D.
This has been an ongoing political battle in a few states- including mine.
The Dems charge that there is absolutely never any voter fraud- ever.
[note- a few years ago they showed a tape of a Texas Dem- she was speaking to a room full of Mexicans- down by the border- she said ‘go out and vote- even if your not a citizen- they cant check!’]
They say the Repubs are doing this because they know many ‘poor Blacks’ who vote Dem- cannot get their I.D.’s
Once again- they don’t realize that this stereotype is racist.
Like when Harry Reid said of Obama- and Biden too ‘he’s the first CLEAN BLACK guy- on a national scene- he can talk good- he doesn’t SOUND BLACK- only when he wants to’.
Yeah- you tell em guys.
I’m surprised Biden didn’t kick in ‘yeah- you need a slight Indian accent in the 7-11’s and Dunkin Doughnuts too’- ‘I’m not kidding either’- yeah- we heard.
So Matthews goes on and asks his guest ‘tell us what this rule means for the poor voters in the state who usually vote Dem’.
The lady goes on and says that this forces them to travel across the country [huh?] in order to obtain their proof of birth from their state.
What about the fax machine?
Then she said many of these people were born by midwives [many- these people- hmm?]
And they don’t have birth certificates.
One of my daughters was born by a midwife- she has a birth certificate.
My homeless friends are constantly losing their picture I.D.’s- which is an important thing for them to have- and they regularly write- contact their home state of birth- without actually going there- and they get new I.D.’s
I really don’t know why MSNBC calls itself a news station.
Then the wonderful Chris Matthews says ‘they are going back to the days of King Herod- where he made all the world travel back to their homeland to be taxed’.
Please- Please- try and stick with the news as best as possible- because when you guys delve into the faith- you really screw stuff up.
Oh- I forgot- I also cut out the picture from the article- it shows the most calm picture of Obama I ever did see.
He’s with his wife at some function.
She looks good too- like a happy- sweet angel.
He is on a plane- doesn’t look that bad- but maybe a little stressed.
Now- I’m sure they searched high and low for a stressed pic of Romney- this was probably the best they could come up with.
I remember when Newsweek posted a cover picture of Michele Bachman- I mean it was the most insane shot I ever saw- like some wild eyed lunatic.
Yeah- the media do stuff like this- all the time.
People don’t realize they are affected by it- but they are.
Okay- this past week I posted some pics of old friends and I also shared a story about some of these friends with the homeless guys.
So I think I’ll post another ‘post’ right below- one that has some info about these old friends.
So- enjoy your weekend- Oh- if you’re a Black person from the great sate of Penn.- say high to King Herod for me.
 I AM THE RESURRECTION AND THE LIFE-
The other night I had a weird dream- 2 young guys showed up at my door. They rang the bell and as I opened the door one of the boys said ‘John, do you remember me’. Now- to be honest this has happened lots thru out my life. At the Fire House I would often show up for shift in the morning and the off going shift would say ‘John- one of your convict buddies stopped by yesterday’ [they eventually caught on that lots of the guys I worked with at the jail/prisons knew where they could find me when they got out- and they figured they would catch me at the Fire House].
So stuff like this has happened lots- and there are times when I simply don’t remember who the guy’s are- if you give a bible study 5 years previously- they might remember you- but you might not remember them. So in my dream I told the kid [around 19 years old] ‘to be honest I don’t really remember you- just a little’ [Yes- I admit at times I have said ‘yeah- I think’ just so I wouldn’t offend the brothers].
The boy tells me that I did indeed help him and he won’t forget it. So I fellowshipped a little while. Then the boy asks a strange request ‘John- will you draw me a picture’. Sure- it seemed like something a young boy would ask- but why not. So I drew a picture of the beach and us just sitting there- like Father and son- and he asked me to sign it for him. I gave him the simple request and he seemed like a little boy getting a present from his dad. He talked a little more and as he began to leave he told me his name. He said ‘I’m Texas Ruiz’. And he left.
As I woke up [around 3 a.m.] I didn’t think too much about it. As I started the coffee, getting ready to go in the yard to pray. I remembered who Texas Ruiz was. I mentioned a few weeks ago that I pray for the cases I see in the paper- or on the news- the severe cases of crimes that have been committed. I have a wall of names [around 30 or so] that I paint the names of these people on. They will forever be on my prayer list- so I try and pick cases where the criminal [or victim] has a long lasting result/penalty- so as I pray for them over the years they can benefit from it.
One of the cases was a local one- here in Corpus Christi. The stepdad called 911 and his stepson [around 1 year old] had died. At 1st they thought it was from some natural cause- then they found out the step dad abused the boy and he died from this abuse. I saw the boy on T.V. a lot- being it was local. As Protestants we usually don’t pray for the people who have died- but I actually have felt the Lord challenge me about this over these last few years- and I do pray for the victims sometimes, even though they are dead. When I saw the boy on TV I would just raise my hand towards him and pray that God would be with his soul- I felt real bad for the kid. I did this a few times over about a week. I felt like a ‘dad’ to the kid- just praying for him. The boys name was Texas Ruiz.
There is a verse in Ezekiel 37- God says ‘in the day I raise you up and bring you back from the dead- in that day you will know that I am God’. I wrote this verse down on an ongoing journal type thing- every week I add whatever verse/book I’m studying from- whatever I feel might be significant. So I stuck this verse on the top of the page. A few days went by and I wrote the dream on the same page- I felt it was significant so I wrote it down.
After a few days- while reviewing the page- I saw that on the top it said ‘in the day I bring you back from the grave’ and in the dream- yes one of ‘our people’ did come back- it freaked me out.
In John’s gospel, chapter 11, we read of the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead. Lazarus and his sisters- Martha and Mary- are good friends of Jesus. They lived in a little town named Bethany [the name of my oldest daughter] and for the Jewish people to openly embrace Jesus at the time- it was a sacrifice. Many of the religious leaders already had turned against Jesus.
So one day Lazarus gets real sick and the sisters send word to Jesus ‘Lazarus- your friend- is sick’. Now- Jesus is going all over the place- healing sick people- opening blind eyes- multiplying bread and fish. I mean the sisters must have thought ‘well- at least all the flack we’ve taken over openly befriending Jesus will finally pay off’. But when Jesus hears about Lazarus the bible says he purposefully waited 2 extra days before heading towards Bethany.
Now- after a few days Lazarus did indeed die. The sisters are mad- ‘wow- he healed all these others- strangers- yet no time for us’. When he gets to the outskirts of town Martha goes out to see him ‘Jesus- why didn’t you come? You could have prevented this from happening’. Eventually Mary says the same thing to him. Jesus tells them ‘I am the resurrection and the life’.
The sisters only saw Jesus thru the lens of ‘why didn't you fix the problem when it was still possible’ Jesus was saying ‘it’s still possible’. He was telling them ‘Just because the thing you thought I would do- in life- didn’t happen yet- I can still overcome the devastation that it has caused you’. Jesus of course will raise their brother- it becomes a huge miracle to the point where the religious leaders conspire to kill Lazarus too- because so many Jewish people begin believing in Jesus because of this miracle.
In Ezekiel 37 God told Ezekiel [and the nation of Israel] ‘in the day I bring you back from the dead- in that day you will know I am God’. Today we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. A real event that took place in time and has stood the test of historical examination [too much to cover right now- but take my word for it- the evidence is overwhelming].
Sometimes we are like the sisters of Lazarus- we expected God to prevent the disaster from happening ‘Lord- if you were here this would not have happened’. The test of faith is to continue to believe- even on the other side of the disaster. The problem with Mary and Martha was they felt like Jesus simply did not come thru in time- they heard all these great stories about how Jesus helped all these others- yet they sat at home- with a dead brother and a funeral to attend.
Today I want to challenge you- are you like the sisters? Did God not prevent the disaster from happening? Did he not do for you what he did for the others? You might not see the ultimate ‘healing’ until the resurrection- the ‘last day’- but be assured- in the day he raises you from the dead- you will know that he is God.
 THE CHINGALINGS-
Got an email the other day from one of my old buddies who I haven’t heard from in a few years. He must have googled my name and found the blog site- it’s not hard to find me being my name is on a lot of the posts that I publish.
He was surprised to have heard that I retired; he used to call me up a lot over the years when I was at the fire house. We grew up together in N.J. and he was one of the friends I always kept in touch with. He told me that a mutual friend was still in prison [Rahway, N.J.] I told him ‘yeah- I know’ I have been writing him in prison ever since he first told me about it a few years back.
He finally sent me the ‘rap sheet’ I knew our friend was doing time for a serious offense, just never knew the whole story. As I read the link I pictured in my mind the whole scene. They
Thursday, August 16, 2012
1893 CHAINS- TREES AND RYAN
It’s been a few days since Romney picked Ryan as the V.P.
And I find it interesting how the media has covered it.
Last night I caught Blitzer [CNN] grilling a Repub on all the votes/positions Ryan has held since being in congress.
I mean the media have been doing this since day 1.
So- Ryan and his defenders have spent time saying ‘look- when someone is picked to be the V.P. - he realizes that the top guy on the ticket is the one who calls the shots’.
Is this true?
As a matter of fact- I never heard one reporter ever pose a question like this to Biden.
When Obama picked Biden- Biden had cast tons of more votes than Ryan- he has been in the senate for years.
Yet not a single question- not one- about Biden casting votes that were contrary to Obama.
Yesterday we also had some bad news- a shooter walked into a political opponent’s office [he held the opposite views of this organization] and opened fire.
Yes- the shooter was associated with groups on the other side- politically- of the people he shot.
Now- where were the Bryan Rosses of the world?
You know- the reporters who were going thru the shooters background- even reporting that they found people with the same name as the shooter [Jim Holmes] who held the opposing political views of the people he shot [Ross falsely associated the batman movie shooter with a Tea party guy].
No- for the most part yesterday’s shooter got little coverage.
He was a left leaning Democrat- active in all types of liberal causes.
Now- Biden just came out and made the now infamous ‘they are gonna put YOU ALL back in chains’.
You all- the Black folk in the audience.
How lovely Joe- you just keep hittin' them out of the ball park ole buddy.
So- when you have a shooter ‘shoot’ at some type of Democrat type organization- or at some type of liberal leaning organization [abortion clinics].
The media spend days- weeks- asking the question ‘do you think the language of ‘the right’ is responsible for this’.
Yet- you have Biden- Obama- and the entire left side of the aisle spending the last few months demonizing rich folk- business people- people who hold to conservative views.
And not one single question [that I saw] asked about whether or not this type of incendiary language [their words- when covering the right] might have caused some unstable person to shoot at the Focus on the Family people.
As the media can’t seem to stop covering every vote Ryan made that was not 100 % in line with Romney- I saw a short report last night from the local NBC affiliate.
It portrayed Romney as being angry- mad- unable to handle the tough campaigning.
It showed Obama and his team as good natured folk- people who live and let live.
Yet- as I have been watching the news- I have not seen Romney openly angry- stressed out- or frustrated to no end.
No- as a matter of fact- many on the ‘right’ are upset with Romney- because he is not doing this.
Let me make a point here to some of my Christian friends.
I know most of you know Romney is Mormon- and has played a very active role in his church.
Did you know Romney was what we consider a Pastor for many years?
People that know him will tell you straight up that he is the basic pastor type person in all of his dealings.
That in all his business dealings- even if you disagree with him financially or politically- they say he is a very honest guy.
So- when the NBC report was painting a narrative that said Romney was this stressed out angry guy- I knew they were telling ‘their story’ and theirs alone.
Then- at the end of the piece- they added in the recent comment of Biden that Romney wants to put Black people back ‘in chains’.
Which was what you saw in the clips they played of Romney- his response to the latest attack.
I also saw another interesting news story.
It was on one of the world news shows that come on at 5:30 in Texas- 6:30 in the east.
They were talking about the wildfires out of control- they then mentioned the global warming thing- how it is behind the fires.
Then- they showed a picture of Palm trees burning- all by their lonesome.
They then insinuated that global warming is so bad- that palm trees are ‘spontaneously combusting’ from the heat.
I kid you not.
Now- did these trees just ignite- by themselves- because of the heat?
As a firefighter- who worked 25 years in a very hot state- days of 110 degrees- with many palm trees.
We never had a case of a palm tree doing this.
So what was the news doing?
More than likely- they were showing you some trees- that probably did ignite- but they were not showing you they were about 100 feet from the rest of the blaze.
Yes- in fire science you learn that the heat from a fire- many more times hotter than the actual temp- even in the worst ‘global warming’ spot on the planet.
The heat from a fire can heat up a close object to its ignition temp.
Now- the fire has to be real hot [your talking thousands in degrees- not 110!]- and the object has to be pretty close- like the fire in the above scenario was probably right out of the picture- on purpose.
So- the news story can say- with some truth ‘this palm tree spontaneously combusted by the heat’ and in the same breath talk about global warming.
They did not outright ‘lie’ but they gave you a narrative that mislead you.
The media do this day in and day out- with everything.
So- as we watch the media go with a fine toothcomb thru every vote Ryan ever made- as they portray Romney as this angry cult leader- who is unable to deal with the stress of a campaign.
Yes- as they show us the palm tree that spontaneously combusts- because those damn Repubs won’t stop global warming!
Yes- as we view all this thru the looking glass of the tube.
Just remember- that when Biden [or Obama] accuse the other side of wanting to put ‘you all back in chains’.
Or wanting to kill grandma while rolling her off the cliff.
Remember- when the left uses this language- and a Democrat walks in to a Christian ministry and starts shooting- remember- this has absolutely nothing to do with the man’s act.
But when some nut shoots and wounds a Democratic senator from Arizona- Gabbie Gifford’s- the media spend an entire week asking if the use of the word Target- by Sarah Palin- was responsible for the shooting.
Yeah- that’s the good ole honest media for ya- you know- the ones who just happen to spot palm trees spontaneously goin’ up in smoke.
NOTE- I kid you not- right now- just as I wrote ‘up in smoke’ I look up- and yes- my desk top [wood] is actually on fire- for real.
I have a habit of burning candles- lighting my own home made lamps [bottles with wicks in them- filled with lamp fuel].
And burning incense.
So- my wife keeps telling me ‘your gonna set the house on fire one day’.
Sure enough- I had a candle burning- and it lit some spilled wax on the desk top [I have a spot where I burn candles and the wax gets on the wood].
I look up- the thing is in flames.
If I had the time I would have clicked a pic!
I put it out with a towel- but I almost had to grab the garden hose- let’s hope my wife does not read this one [or one of my daughters squeals on me! You know- Biden style.]