Thursday, May 31, 2007

Interesting Info

I receive The Week. It is a digest of multiple news sources covering politics to the arts. It is the Reader Digest of the Newspaper and Magazines.

Here is some interesting news from the latest issue (June 1, 2007):

Life-Isn't-Fair Mentality Kills: Those with this sinful attitude are "55 percent more likely to have a heart attack in the next decade."

Gas Price Gouging...By the Government: The typical gas company earns 13 cents/gallons...the government takes 18.4 cents...

Polls May Be Useful: 13% of American Muslims believe that in some circumstances suicide bombing of civilians to defend Islam is justified; 5% expressed a favorable opinion of al Qaida; 27% had "no opinion" of them (Pew Research Center).

In other news:

In Case of Emergency: The Government will survive. You might not. (Presidential Directive, NSPD-51/HSPD-20).

Dry Terror Run: Terrorist test America's ability to respond to threats.

Sadly, after (and before) 911, the American governments (local, state or national) have made very little (zero?) effort to teach (or at least recommend) ways to protect ourselves. Thus, we must (like in days of old) teach ourselves and one another how to survive a broken car, a blizzard or a terrorist attack. That means foodstuff reserves, batteries, flashlights....and even the use of a gun. All of which should be standard in any major event.

But that is for another post.


Friday, May 04, 2007

The Church's Prophetic Office

When the church speaks, people do not listen.
It used to be different.

Election day sermons thundered from the American pulpit, declaring the duty of the people to their rulers and the duty of the rulers to their people. And each were to submit to God.

And if the leaders were blatantly out of hand, the pulpit would call them on the carpet--just like Jeremiah or John the Baptist. This is sometimes dubbed the churches "prophetic office."

I recently watched about the only show worth watching on "public tv" (channel 12, 5.03.07). The Independence Institute was explaining the new bill that passed in Colorado, gaining more funds from the property tax (mill levy). It was touted as the "Children's Amendment", to help give more money to the schools without a tax increase.

But in Colorado we have been blessed with a little thing called the TABOR Amendment. It limits taxes and demands that any tax increase or tax policy change be brought to the people for a vote. And Colorado's Attorney General's office believes the legislative branch is walking on ice with this bill.

Any prima facia reading of TABOR (as the interview with the Deputy Attorney General pointed out) would come to the same conclusion. DeGrow, the other one interviewed, witnessed a Senator screaming (his words) that this was the "children's amendment" and should be passed.

But the bill itself has no guarantee or explicit language that the monies will go to the schools. And the legislature will not include such. In fact, it frees up money on the state end (1.5 billion in a decade). Money for any use. And, of course, it is a tax-increase without the voter's approval. Two strikes thus far.

And what should a minister say to this?
Governors, Senators and Representative: watch your mouth.

Violations of the Ninth Commandment are no little thing. It is bad enough that most politicians have a reputation of lying; exaggeration of claims and using emotive language ("children's amendment") to hide truth is just as bad as blatant lying.

If church leaders would preach this to their people, maybe, just maybe, they might vote differently next time. But we will never know until the churches themselves are infused with Gospel power and love for God's Law.