He That Has Ears To Hear, Let Him Hear (Matthew 11:15-30)
Challenging both secular wisdom and religious doctrines. - Will our descendants know moral virtue?
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Christians and Citizenship
“To the distinguished character of Patriot, it should be our highest glory to add the more distinguished character of Christian.” --George Washington
“Whatever makes men good Christians, makes them good citizens.” --Daniel Webster
James Madison - 4th U.S.
President and primary author of the Constitution:
"But I go on this great republican principle, that the people will have virtue
and intelligence to select men of virtue and wisdom. Is there no virtue
among us? If there be not, we are in a wretched situation. No theoretical
checks--no form of government can render us secure. To suppose that any form
of government will secure liberty or happiness without any virtue in the
people, is a chimerical idea. If there be sufficient virtue and intelligence
in the community, it will be exercised in the selection of these men. So
that we do not depend on their virtue, or put confidence in our rulers, but
in the people who are to choose them."
Americans Have Elected Sinners since Our Founding - By
Janet M. LaRue Janet M. LaRue
...Because the Founders recognized man’s sinful nature, they
created a Constitution with limited government and separation of powers—sinners
checking and balancing sinners. Some say they won’t vote for president in the
coming election. The “lesser of evils” is a choice too far for them. Reflecting
on the biblical story of Esther is helpful for “such a time as this.” This is
not to imply that refusing to vote means our destruction as a people or a
nation. There are principles that we can apply, however, in deciding whether to
vote and for whom.
...Throughout history, God has used imperfect people to align with
an ungodly ruler in order to stop a greater evil. God used Ahasuerus—He didn’t
endorse him or his sinful ways. Our Founders understood this. Consider: John
Adams: “Let us examine, then, with a sober, a manly . . . and a Christian
spirit; let us neglect all party [loyalty] and advert to facts; let us believe
no man to be infallible or impeccable in government any more than in religion;
take no man’s word against evidence, nor implicitly adopt the sentiments of
others who may be deceived themselves, or may be interested in deceiving us.”
The Papers of John Adams. (...More from the Founders at link.)
o Americans Have Elected Sinners since Our Founding - By Janet M. LaRue Janet M. LaRue
...Because the Founders recognized man’s sinful nature, they created a Constitution with limited government and separation of powers—sinners checking and balancing sinners. Some say they won’t vote for president in the coming election. The “lesser of evils” is a choice too far for them. Reflecting on the biblical story of Esther is helpful for “such a time as this.” This is not to imply that refusing to vote means our destruction as a people or a nation. There are principles that we can apply, however, in deciding whether to vote and for whom.
...Throughout history, God has used imperfect people to align with an ungodly ruler in order to stop a greater evil. God used Ahasuerus—He didn’t endorse him or his sinful ways. Our Founders understood this. Consider: John Adams: “Let us examine, then, with a sober, a manly . . . and a Christian spirit; let us neglect all party [loyalty] and advert to facts; let us believe no man to be infallible or impeccable in government any more than in religion; take no man’s word against evidence, nor implicitly adopt the sentiments of others who may be deceived themselves, or may be interested in deceiving us.” The Papers of John Adams. (...More from the Founders at link.)
o Imperfect Candidates and the Christian Vote By Gary Kelly - Would you have fought against tyranny in 1776? Was not declaring independence from tyranny, “Biblically-based?” Read the grievances in the Declaration and see how many are again prevalent today. I am disturbed by how a Christian could consider allowing the Obamanation to continue! Will we be better off with Romney or Obama? Until someone is on the ballot that meets all Biblically-based requirements are not Christians committed to working and voting against the most evil choice? Are not Christians to continue to spiritually and politically confront unrighteousness and challenge Christian complacency? This is not the same America when candidates were Christians and most voters were Christians.
As I’m visiting grandchildren, does it not give credence and appreciation for vehemently opposing the reelection of a Marxist? We have been given a choice between Obama and Romney as a result of the complacency of Christians. As a citizen of both the Kingdom of God and the United States can a Christian justify encouraging me to not vote for Romney, which I contend is the same as a vote for Obama? Was King David perfect? Under which President will more babies be aborted? Under which President will progressive politically correct Marxism gain more momentum? Can I count on Christians to explain to my children and grandchildren that Election 2012 is a “test” and not a step in reversing the damage Obama and his Democrat/Marxists/RINOs have perpetrated on this REPUBLIC the last 4 years. Until "Christians" elect men of Biblical moral virtue then as Christians we will always fail the “test.”
Charles Finney wrote: "The time has come for Christians to vote for honest men, and take consistent ground in politics or the Lord will curse them...Politics are a part of a religion in such a country as this, and Christians must do their duty to their country as a part of their duty to God." ..."God will bless or curse this nation according to the course Christians take in politics."
Jesus is the King of the Kingdom of God and not running for President (and neither is Allen West). Therefore, since the only One Who is perfect is not running, than someone who is imperfect must be. Plus, how many candidates, even Christian, will satisfy all Christians? Christian voters must decide, in this present day climate of prevalent progressive left-wing culture which candidates are likely to do less harm to the Republic and adhere more to Biblical Righteousness. Yes it is disturbing we have to choose between a Marxist and a RINO. Christians in Marxachusetts consistently have to choose between Marxists or RINOs, as we did when Romney ran for Governor and Brown for Senator. Yes I am beside myself with Romney after he did NOTHING and to uphold the Massachusetts Constitution and prevent same-sex marriage from being made in court and again when he violated the liberty that comes from God with Romneycare.
However, it took decades to denigrate into this moral decline and America will not be restored overnight as Christians sit on the sidelines refusing to confront “politics and religion,” as the Marxist media continues to deceive complacent American voters. As long as preachers only preach John 3:16 and not what Jesus said in the same breath through verse 21, or 1 Timothy 2 and not 2 Timothy 4 as well America will continue to decline. "A vote is like a rifle: its usefulness depends upon the character of the user." Theodore Roosevelt
o The Christian Calling to Citizenship By JENNIFER A. MARSHALL - Christian Citizenship: What and Why? Whether daunted by the complexity of the issues, reacting to partisan rancor, or dubious about the value of the political process generally, many believers simply keep their distance from politics. But disengagement is not appropriate---or even possible. The exercise of citizenship is a matter of stewardship for the Christian. Citizenship is one of our callings. When the subject of calling comes up, we tend to think first of the occupation that fills the bulk of our time, but our callings also include other roles, relationships, and responsibilities. Our first call is to glorify and enjoy God, and our everyday callings are the ways we pursue that end. For example, one of my callings is working in public policy, but others include being a church member, sister, neighbor, and citizen of Virginia and the United States. Stewardship of these relationships and responsibilities means directing them to God's glory.
The blessing of living in a self-governing society carries particular responsibility. In a free society, citizenship involves a wide range of decisions that require much reflection. Good stewardship in this case requires at least a basic understanding of civics and issues of debate, but a Christian's grasp of the matter ought to go beyond an 11th-grade government curriculum. A biblical worldview should shape our diagnosis of the problems politics seeks to address and our vision of how to resolve them.
That begins by understanding the integration of politics with the rest of life. Politics isn't just election season and what happens in Congress. It's not primarily about the endless debate on Fox News or MSNBC. Politics is about the way we order our lives together, and servants of the Creator and Lord of the universe make a vital contribution to that endeavor. Politics is the way we figure out how to meet everyday needs, solve problems, and sort out our differences. It's about harmonizing diverse interests and building consensus about what's worth pursuing as a society. We work out issues in all kinds of forums---from family room to boardroom to congressional hearing room, each with its own authority structure, each exercising a variety of roles and responsibilities.
We ought to approach all these arenas with a coherent biblical worldview. It is necessary and proper for Christians to enter the public square with a biblically shaped perspective. This is not unique. Everyone brings fundamental assumptions to public discourse, whether they call those commitments "religious" or not. Voting is an exercise in expressing a worldview. Every public policy expresses a moral judgment about what is good, from seat belt laws to tax reform to the definition of marriage. To apply a Christian worldview to such questions of public policy isn't self-interested. It's serving our neighbor.
The Real Debate is with Your Neighbor and Coworker
Pfister - The truth shall set you free has more meaning for the
election of 2012 than at any time in America’s history. Due to a
blatantly biased media committing both sins, the acts of commission and
omission, your neighbor and coworker are being intentionally misled.
They are voters too, with the likelihood of making bad decisions due to
bad information. The real debate therefore must be with them if America
is to be preserved as founded. The future of America is in jeopardy
unless you engage. What does your neighbor believe? Ask them. On foreign
policy do they believe the Benghazi attack was due to protestors
reacting to a video insulting Islam? ...Does your neighbor believe
the debates are fair? Being moderated by self admitted liberals in the
presidential debates, and by a personal acquaintance of President Obama
whose ex-husband is head of the FCC moderated the Vice Presidential
debate. ...Does your neighbor believe the economy is recovering? ...Does
your neighbor believe more jobs are being created because Obama proudly
states the unemployment rate has declined from a high of 10% to the
lowest of his presidency at 7.8%? ...
o The Tyranny of the Minority - by A.W.R. Hawkins - When the Founding Fathers created this nation, they designated it a republic rather than a democracy. They did so because a republic is fixed and tends toward stability over time, whereas a democracy, which is always in flux, is prone to violent dissolution at any moment. In fact, many of them referred to democracy as mob rule, and wanted to avoid it like the plague for fear that it could provide a faction the opportunity to access to the levers of political power and change the course of the nation for the worse in a relatively short period of time.
Although we have all but abolished the Constitution the Founders left us and moved closer to a democracy with each passing generation, we have still managed to remain a republic foundationally. Yet somewhere along the way, between 1776 and now, we opened the door to a rabid political correctness that has actually nurtured the very faction-like atmosphere which tends to undo a republic. But it's not the kind of faction our Founders feared: not one where a majority of voters unite for a cause and force their will upon the citizenry as a whole. Instead, it's a perverted use of the court system and groups like the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) that allow a person to claim that he's been offended and then to levy the charge against those who gave offense in order to control their actions. In other words, we're not dealing with the tyranny of the majority, but the tyranny of the minority.
We have lost nativity scenes in cities across America because one citizen of one city doesn't like Christmas. We have lost freedom of religious expression in our public school system because a student here or there is bothered when people pray. We have lost crosses on many of our war memorials because atheists want to shield their children from religious exposure. And we are poised to lose even more freedoms if we don't stop this scourge before it sweeps across our land and our intellectual landscape completely.
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