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Posts Tagged ‘Hillary Clinton’

1.  Ouch, a man uses a gun to scratch his back and ends up shooting himself.  I wouldn’t know if there is a good way to explain that to friends and family.

HT: Smart Pastor

2.  The Pill kills babies, some little known information from the American Life League

3.  Web trends – a recent Barna report shows:

  • 78% who access a computer has sent an e-mail.
  • 33% have used IM in the past week.
  • 23% have a personal webpage or a profile on a social networking site (Facebook, MySpace, etc).
  • 10% have a blog, but 14% have commented on another person’s blog in the last week.
  • 38% of evangelicals have listened to a sermon via podcast in the last week.
  • Evangelicals use of Web 2.0 mirrors the trends seen across the board.

HT: Monday Morning Insight

4.  Something I need to learn to do better.

5.  One reason (of three given) to avoid using inconsistency as a mark against an idea or person.

Everybody’s inconsistent, so nobody denounces inconsistency consistently.

Source: 22 Words with Abraham Piper

6.  Stepping out if faith is hard to do, but comes with growth.

Stepping out in faith always brings clarification of God’s plan. When Ananias went to see Paul (then Saul), he received additional information (read Acts 9:10–21). As Saul submitted himself to the ministry of Ananias, he found out more about God’s plan for his life. You’re “a chosen instrument of Mine.” I’m going to use you “to bear My name” (9:15). Saul hadn’t known that before. (He had never read the book of Acts!) He knew nothing of what was in store for him until Ananias took that initial step of faith. Both men discovered that God Himself chose Saul to be His instrument and that intense suffering would mark his ministry. That’s the way God operates.

Source: Chuck Swindoll’s Blog

7.  Redefining Community?

HT: Out of Ur

8.  Effective evangelism… not so much.

You know I think it would easier to say everybody without Jesus, (Romans 3:23; 6:23; John 3:16-17).

Sports fans?  Really?  I guess since I entered a March Madness pool before the last NCAA tournament I’m in trouble.

HT: Ragamuffin Soul

9.  This made me laugh out loud.  Hillary Clinton – Unelectable.  You can download this musical gem here.  To listen to this song in a pop-up click here.

10.  Please continue to pray for Parkersburg, IA that was leveled by an EF5 tornado over Memorial Day Weekend.  My friend Eric’s wife’s grandma lives there and thankfully her house was spared.  They went up to help with clean-up and you can see some pictures of the aftermath on his blog.

11.  Understanding how metrosexual your worship leader is.  A handy guide by Prodigal Jon.

12.  I am still appalled by this video.  Pastors behaving badly in the pulpit.  Contemptuous speech has no place in the pulpit.  Fr. Michael Pfleger needs to be reeled in by the Chicago Diocese.

Edward Gilbreath has some excellent thoughts about this controversy.

13.  Bishop Harry Jackson & Tony Perkins – “The Truth in Black and White: California ‘Marriage'”

Source: Family Research Council Blog

14.  Will Smith on Marriage and Divorce

During an interview on Ellen:

Divorce just can’t be an option. It’s really that simple – if you just remove the option. Because if you have the option, one day that person’s going to make you want a divorce. You absolutely get to the point that you’re done, and the only thing that keeps you continuing is that there’s no other option.

From a Reader’s Digest interview:

RD: You and Jada have been married nine years and, by all accounts, are very happy. What’s the key?
Smith: Communication. And divorce cannot be an option.
RD: Your first marriage ended in divorce.
Smith: That is probably the most painful loss of my life. I quit. I could have fixed it. It really was not that bad.
RD: Some would say there’s no reason to stay if a marriage isn’t good.
Smith: Once you say that, you’ve lost. With Jada, I stood up in front of God and my family and friends and said, “Till death do us part.” So there are two possible outcomes: We are going to be together till death, or I am dead.

I’ve already been a fan of his movies.  I’m impressed.  This is rare, but encouraging talk coming out of Hollywood.

HT: Evangelical Outpost

15.  Evidently evangelism is a hate crime in the United Kingdom at least according to a police officer there..

A police community support officer ordered two Christian preachers to stop handing out gospel leaflets in a predominantly Muslim area of Birmingham.

The evangelists say they were threatened with arrest for committing a “hate crime” and were told they risked being beaten up if they returned. The incident will fuel fears that “no-go areas” for Christians are emerging in British towns and cities, as the Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali, the Bishop of Rochester, claimed in The Sunday Telegraph this year….

The preachers, both ministers in Birmingham, were handing out leaflets on Alum Rock Road in February when they started talking to four Asian youths.

A police community support officer (PCSO) interrupted the conversation and began questioning the ministers about their beliefs.

“He said we were in a Muslim area and were not allowed to spread our Christian message. He said we were committing a hate crime by telling the youths to leave Islam and said that he was going to take us to the police station.”

The ministers claim he also advised them not to return to the area. As he walked away, the PCSO said: “You have been warned. If you come back here and get beaten up, well you have been warned”.

West Midlands Police, who refused to apologise, said the incident had been “fully investigated” and the officer would be given training in understanding hate crime and communication.

HT: Stand to Reason

16.  I like Michelle Malkin and I read her blog when I get a chance.  But the brouhaha that erupted over Rachel Ray wearing this scarf that is thought to be a keffiyeh in a Dunkin Donuts Ad is ridiculous.  I mean come on! Dunkin Donuts ended up pulling the ad.

Looking at other keffiyehs that are pictured in a follow-up post… it doesn’t even look the same!

HT: The Point

17.  John Mark Reynolds on the Presidential Race (now confirmed to be John McCain vs. Barack Obama) – “Five Reasons Both Candidates Will Lose“.

18.  The 2008 United Methodist Church General Conference is adopting a more pro-life stance on abortion.

19.  Breaking news on Michelle Obama?

20.  The 10 Worst Movies About Jesus.  HT: Michael Spencer

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By Paul J. Richards/AFP/Getty Images

Todd Purdum who covered Bill Clinton for sixteen years wrote a troubling piece in Vanity Fair (I don’t normally read Vanity Fair, but there has been enough brouhaha over it I wanted to read it.).

Is Bill Clinton a asset or liability for Senator Hillary Clinton in her bid for the White House (now doomed I’m sure), and the likely bid they’ll make to get her on the ticket with Barack Obama?

He’s evidently an angry man.

“There’s an anger in him that I find surprising,” one senior aide, who has known and served both Clintons for years, told me this spring. “There seems to be an abiding anger in him, and not just the summer thunderstorms of old. He has been called into question repeatedly by top staff. The fact is, you can only weigh in so often on this stuff. It’s just a huge force of nature.”

His painful departure and transition from the White House.

By most accounts, including his own, Clinton struggled to find his footing in the early days of his post-presidency. “I was lost for three weeks after I left the White House,” he said on the campaign trail this winter. “Nobody ever played a song anymore. I had no idea where I was.” He had ended his administration in a firestorm of criticism over his eleventh-hour pardon of a raft of assorted miscreants, including the fugitive financier Marc Rich, whose ex-wife, Denise, contributed $450,000 to Clinton’s presidential-library fund, approximately $1 million to Democratic causes, including $70,000 to a fund supporting Hillary Clinton’s Senate campaign, and $7,000 worth of furniture for the Clintons’ new home in Chappaqua, in suburban Westchester County.

Apparently President Clinton is lacking the appropriate staff to “save him from himself.”

The most pointed criticism of Band (President Clinton’s current personal counselor who is involved in his daily schedule) is precisely this: that he does not possess what Clinton has always needed in a string of strong-willed aides, such as his gubernatorial chief of staff Betsey Wright, or his director of Oval Office operations, Nancy Hernreich—the judgment to save him from himself. The origins of such criticism may lie in the fact that one of his predecessors as personal aide, Stephen Goodin, was cited, together with Hernreich, in the Starr Report as having tried to keep Monica Lewinsky away from the president, while Band, then only an intern, escorted her to a White House party, at her request.

It is sad to think that we have a former president who needs a babysitter to help save him from himself.  But based on his behavior in the White House, this shouldn’t be very surprising.

His commitment to his wedding vows must not have changed much since being out of the Oval Office.

None of these wisps of smoke have produced a public fire. But four former Clinton aides told me that, about 18 months ago, one of the president’s former assistants, who still advises him on political matters, had heard so many complaints about such reports from Clinton supporters around the country that he felt compelled to try to conduct what one of these aides called an “intervention,” because, the aide believed, “Clinton was apparently seeing a lot of women on the road.” The would-be intercessor was rebuffed by people around Clinton before ever getting an audience with the former president, and another aide told me that the effort was not well received by either Bill or Hillary Clinton and that some Hillarylanders, in particular, were in denial about the continuing political risks that Bill’s behavior might pose.

So is Vanity Fair being fair toward President Clinton?  What if the items in this story is true, how do you think that affects Senator Clinton’s political future?

Cross-posted at Red Blue Christians and From Their Own Mouths

Update – 6/4/08: Allan Bevere makes some great points about the Vanity Fair article, and how Purdum mostly relied upon anonymous sources.

Unless you have just arrived from another planet, you and everyone know about Bill Clinton and his constant zipper problems throughout the years. If indeed, the former president has been discretely sexually indiscreet as he has campaigned for his wife, no one would be surprised.

But here is the problem– the article relies completely on anonymous sources. One of the increasingly disturbing trends in current journalistic practice is the reliance on unnamed or anonymous sources in order to trash someone’s name and reputation. All that is needed, supposedly, is that the journalist researching and writing the story, consider the anonymous source to be reliable. Thus we are supposed to accept the “newsworthy” claim (accusation) as accurate because a journalist trusts the person who is providing the information while hiding in the shadows. (Journalists and anonymous sources– now there’s a time-honored recipe for truth and integrity!)

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1.  Just incase you haven’t had enough already… another political ad asking questions about Senator Barack Obama.

HT: Nuke

2.  Because I didn’t do any political items in the last edition of Twenty Items of Interest.  I present to you… the many faces of Hillary Clinton.

HT: Kevin Stilley

I hope you enjoyed this picture as much as I did.  Ahem, moving along…

3.  I discovered, thanks to Brent Thomas, a blog called Stuff Christians Like.  It is a strange mix of the serious and the humorous.  One serious blog post is on “Lying because I love you”  He said many Christians do it, but if we are to be honest with ourselves we lie to protect ourselves not the other person involved.  The non-serious post is “turning ushers into the Secret Service” it made me laugh out loud.

4. Brooke Bouma blogged about Einstein videos – are they bad or not?  I think every once in awhile they are fine, but I swear it seems like some people raise their kids on these things.  So the end result will likely be a bunch of people with like two-second attention spans (ok I’m exaggerating).  Seriously though, have you noticed that the number of cases of ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) increased with the number of children’s TV shows increasing?  Do we not think there is some correlation?

5.  it drives me nuts when people don’t use caps in e-mails and blogs.  like it is some hip, cool postmodern thing to do.  what do you think?  use caps or not?  is it really that burdensome to use caps?  are they too sexy for capitalization?  are we afraid that we will pull a pinkie to reach over and press that shift key?  the chicago tribune talks about using caps versus not using caps.

it is a pet peeve of mine along with the e-mails i get THAT ARE IN ALL CAPS LIKE THAT PERSON IS SCREAMING AT ME, but i digress.

6.  A dad has been jailed for six months for daughter (now 19) skipping school and not graduating.  A judge ordered her father to be responsible for her education when she was 17.  Apparently he will be in jail until she passes her G.E.D. which apparently she is unable to do.  Crazy… while I think parents need to be held accountable when the kids are younger –  I think a 17-year-old needs to take responsibility for her actions.  My thoughts are why are we, as taxpayers, footing the bill for a kid’s education when that kid clearly has no desire or motivation to be there?  That is why I am, in principle, against raising the compulsory age of education to 18.  (Source: Alisyn Camerota)

7.  Hey NEWS flash!!!!!!  Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons are vastly different than born-again Christians!  Duh.  Somebody actually paid to have this survey done?

8.  Bible names top the list for newborn boys.  Names like… Jacob, Michael, Joshua, and Matthew were the favorites.  I think that is awesome.  My wife and I have been kicking around having a fourth child, and I think if we do and the baby is a boy we should name him Nimrod, a great Biblical name.  We like being different.  I also think that Ham is a good name.  I am also partial to Riphatgh, Togarmah, Dodanim and Methuselah.

9.  Apparently there is a Jedi Church, and Darth Vader was spared jail time for attacking its founder.  To my readers from Great Britain… I thought the U.S. religious scene could be pretty weird, but I have to say this is one of the strangest things I’ve seen in some time.  May the force be with you!

10.  One of our mentors, Darin Wogen, shared his testimony at our banquet last week.  He did an awesome job!

11.  My friend Eric is concerned about Evangelicals who seem to be grasping for political influence and power.  Particularly with the Evangelical Climate Initiative and their seemingly quick embrace of the global warming rhetoric.   I won’t use the word he used for these Evangelicals actions because I try to keep my blog family friendly ;).

12.  I encourage you to read Out of Ur’s commentary on the Evangelical Manifesto.  Richard Land shares why he didn’t sign it.

13.  John Edwards endorses Barack Obama… gee I’m shocked (please read sarcasm)!  You can read a first hand account of this earth-shattering news at One Mom’s blog.  Why exactly is Hillary Clinton still in this?

14.  Bob Barr announces his candidacy for President of the United States on the Libertarian ticket.  He is taking an anti-Iraq stance.  This may slow a flow of conservatives who don’t want to vote for McCain from going to him, but may garner support for Blue Dog Democrats who are against the war.

HT: Kevin Tracy

15.  Pistol Pete blogs on mysterious love letters found that could possibly be between Judas and Mary Magdalene.  It made me laugh out loud.

16.  I love this cartoon… Appreciation by David Hayward

17.  Interesting post by Velvet Hammer about the connection between Nazism and Islam.

18.  It’s official… Californians no longer live in a democracy, but an oligarchy.

19.  This commercial reminds me of when my son was born.  The nurse took him over to clean him up and while he on the table she had to jump to miss this nice arch of pee.  Yep… that’s my boy.  This kid has a great future putting out campfires.

HT: Joe Carter

20.  Brian McLaren’s non-sequitur.

McLaren answers a question about truth:

Obviously that’s a challenge. The flip side of that question is look at the Catholic Church: For all of its orthodoxy, it could have bishops covering up for molesting priests. And evangelicals, for all their claims of orthodoxy, can be barbaric to gay people and can blindly support a rush to war in Iraq and can be, as we speak, fomenting for war with Iran. … Obviously, I have a lot of critics and they often say, ‘You’re wanting to water down the Gospel to accommodate to post-modernity.’ I say, ‘No, I really don’t want to do that. But what I do want to do is acknowledge first the ways we’ve already watered down the Gospel to accommodate modernity.’ … I think the naivete of some of those critics is that they’re starting with a pure pristine understanding of the Gospel. It seems to me we’re all in danger of screwing up.

Melinda at Stand to Reason points out that a common mistake that emergent types tend to make regarding absolute truth – that it is taken to mean that we are infallible in our knowledge of the truth.  That isn’t what it means though.  Absolute defines the truth, not our knowledge.  She suggests that we should refer to absolute truth (which Josh McDowell defines as “something that is true for all people, in all places, at all times.”) as objective truth.

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1.  Greg Boyd, senior pastor of Woodland Hills Church in St. Paul, MN and professor of theology at Bethel University posted a review of Eckhart Tolle’s book, A New Earth.  Tolle has recently partnered with Oprah to do a online religion class that is based on this book and has been controversial.  He does a great job dissecting the book and pointing out where it is inconsistent with a biblical worldview.

2.  This commercial parody would probably more accurately reflect Planned Parenthood’s worldview.

3.  Florida’s Senate Passes Evolution Academic Freedom Act.

The Florida Senate voted 21-17 Wednesday, following a strong majority vote in the Florida Senate Judiciary Committee, to submit the Evolution Academic Freedom Act for vote in the House.

If passed, the new bill will give full protections and freedoms for teachers and students in Florida schools to share views in the classroom that challenge some or all parts of Darwin’s theory of evolution.

The new bill was largely prompted by legislators after the Florida Board of Education decided to begin requiring the instruction of evolution in schools earlier this year.

Many teachers and students reportedly felt marginalized, discriminated, or ostracized if they shared personal views that ran counter to Darwinism.

Read the rest – Source: Christian Post

4.  This is completely nasty.

5.  Hillary Clinton… a prayer warrior?  Ummmm.  I highly doubt it.

Chuck Colson Greg Boyd

Shane Claiborne

6.  Evangelical Politics – Three Generations: Shane Claiborne, Chuck  Colson, and Greg Boyd are part of panel discussion at the National Pastors’ Conference moderated by “Speaking of Faith” radio host, Krista Tippett.  You can download the audio here (right click and select “save as”).  You can watch the video here.

7.  Joe Carter posts on “10 Ways Darwinists Help Intelligent Design” read part 1, part 2, and part 3.  Great series… check it out!

8. From the Friendly Atheist – “20 Things that Christians Do In Church That Annoy Me

9.  Great advice from Abraham Piper in a guest post on Between Two Worlds.  Made me rethink how I do my syndication feed.  I’ll start syndicating the entire post.

HT: Abraham Piper – 22 Words

10.  Steve Brown interviews Tony Jones on “What is the Emergent Church?”

Reformer John Calvin 11.  Calvinism 101?  Try these articles on T.U.I.L.P. – Total Depravity, Unconditional Election, Limited Atonement, Irresistible Grace and Perseverance of the Saints.

12. More on Calvinism, Thomas McDill, assistant professor of Biblical and Systematic Theology at  Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, wrote a guest post at Justin Taylor’s blog on the good he sees in the resurgence of Calvinism among young evangelicals.  The catch here is that he is an Arminian (so he offered some cautions as well).  HT: Ben Witherington

 

13.  John Piper encourages us to make much of Christ with this economic stimulus package that is coming in the mail.

14.  The Church of the Nazarene  has their own rap song.  Ummmmm…. interesting.

I think the EFCA needs a rap song too.

HT: Withallyourmind.net

15.  Keith Buhler shares five bad reasons not to see Expelled.  The movie is great, and you should ignore the pro-evolution brouhaha over it.  Just go see it and make up your own mind.

16.  By the way, men and women are different.  C. Michael Patton discusses on his blog the theology of men and women and their roles, and so he compares and contrasts the two major positions on this matter: complementarianism and egalitarianism.  Great post for a hot to handle topic.

17.  While I don’t agree with all of Rob Bell’s theological positions I do like some of the NOOMA videos, below is one of my favorites – “Rich”.

Part I

Part 2

18.  We should be so thankful everything that we take for granted here in the United States.  As I’m writing this I’m sucking down a Caribou Coffee Chocolate Northern Lite Cooler – $4.40 (before tax).  Reading this article about Myanmar refugees living in Thailand, I am reminded that many people exist on way less a day that what this drink cost me.

Trying to figure out who is working with refugees there I found that Strategic World Impact, a Christian relief organization headquartered in Bartlettsville, OK, is doing some good work there.  Also Baptist World Alliance is bringing attention to the crisis there.  Though they don’t have a website (at least not what I could find), Kawthoolei Karen Baptist Bible School and College is working alongside these refugees as well.

HT: Ellen Stevens

19.  Being a reformed evangelical when discussing Calvinism with some Arminian brothers and sisters I’m often asked, “Why evangelize if God has predestined those who are saved?”  Bob Hayton has a great blog post on this topic sharing how Calvinism informs evangelism

Despite what many have said or heard, Calvinism does not negate or downplay evangelism. Charles Spurgeon, George Whitefield, William Carey, and Adoniram Judson were not exceptions to the rule. Rather, they are simply some noteworthy examples of evangelists and preachers who were both Calvinistic in theology and evangelistic in practice.

Of course, Spurgeon said it best. When asked why his doctrine of election did not move him to preach only to the elect, Spurgeon replied: “If you’ll go around and pull up their shirttails so I can see if they have an E stamped on their back, I will.”

20.  Larry James has been blogging on Race in America – here’s the first post of that series at Everyday Citizen.

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1.  Barack Obama is now a pop culture icon.  Presenting Barocky the Movie.

Oh yeah, I’m inspired.  I’m actually enjoying watching Clinton and Obama bludgeon each other.

HT: Amanda Carpenter

For a must see video on Obama (with serious content) go here.  HT: Eric via e-mail.

2.  What a waste of tuition – Randolph College in Virginia made a class trip to a Nevada brothel.  Exactly what are they supposed to learn?

HT: Kevin McCullough

3.  Oh yes, a pick on Obama post…. David C. Innes, Assistant Professor of Politics at King’s College in New York City blogged – “Obama, All Too Human

Several things were striking about Wednesday night’s debate in Pennsylvania. The two candidates drove home the point that we have either known for a long time (Hillary) or are coming increasingly to see (Obama) that they are both liars, i.e. ordinary politicians. At one point Obama was saying something disingenuous, and the viewers could hear Hillary burst out with a laugh off screen. That was all she needed to say.

Read the rest.

4.  Want to get Nancy Pelosi out of Congress?  Then support Cindy Sheehan.  I understand Kevin’s logic, but the thought of supporting Sheehan made me vomit in my mouth a little.

5. More Obama pile on…. sorry, I. CAN’T. HELP. MYSELF.  My favorite cartoon is below.

 

6.  Random cute puppy picture

I had to break up the political thing somehow.  He kind of looks like a big rat doesn’t he?

HT: Way Cool Pictures

7.  Steve has an interesting take on the FLDS ranch raid in Texas.  We need to think about the slippery slope this raid may have legally

FYI: I am glad the raid occurred (because I do believe abuse was going on), but I think Steve brings up a very good point.   What about due process?  Where is the person who made the phone call?

8.  Why being a “follower of Jesus” is not enough.  Stephen Murray thinks so.

When I probe behind the phrase on so many blogs…I discover something that is rather disturbing. It is disturbing by its omissions rather than by what it affirms. Usually these posts speak about Christ’s calls to uplift the poor, look after the marginalized, love one’s enemies, turn the other cheek etc. etc. And at this point I’m loving it and rejoicing in the supreme moral vision of our Lord Jesus that extends to so many of our current issues in this broken world… 

But step back and take a closer look – what’s missing? When I step back what I don’t often see is a cross, I don’t see nail pierced hands, I don’t see a thorn scraped brow. Ultimately I don’t see the glorious substitution of Christ in my place whereby I can truly call myself a follower of Jesus – because he has purchased me with his very own blood. Rather I see an ethical Jesus, a Jesus who knows right from wrong but has no way to deal with a problem that stretches so much deeper than right or wrong behaviour. I see a moral first century Rabbi inspiring people to be more moral – and it’s deeply disturbing.

9.  This is a conference I wish I was able to attend.  Good news though!  All of the main sessions of Together for the Gospel 2008 can be downloaded for free.  You can go here to hear sessions by Ligon Duncan, Thabiti Anyabwile, John MacArthur, Mark Dever, R.C. Sproul, Albert Mohler, John Piper, and C.J. Mahaney.

The message (right click link and choose “save target as”) by Thabiti Anyabwile, the senior pastor of First Baptist Church of Grand Cayman on “Bearing the Image: Identity, Work of Christ and the Church” was especially powerful.

10.  Douglas Neiswonger reconciles 2 Peter 3:3-9 with the doctrine of election.

11.  Britain’s Got Talent had a 13-year old sing who had an amazing voice.

His voice won’t stay like that for long… my voice started cracking when I was in 7th grade, but it should still very, very good.

12.  Video of a Hamas leader saying,  “President Carter’s visit gives us increased legitimacy…”  Yeah, that is exactly what we want a terrorist group to feel.  Thanks Jimmy!

13.  The Book of Hope is a charity that helps bring the Gospel to people throughout the world.  When I was a youth pastor we did this for a Jr./Sr. High School down the street – every kid in that school received a booklet of the Life of Christ.

A second video featuring their ministry in Poland.

We should also be involved in compassion projects as well like Blood Water Mission, World Vision, Compassion International, etc.  I would think this would be a great project for Vacation Bible Schools though.

HT: Compassion in Politics

14.  You know we all need to learn to say what we mean.  I am still learning this lesson with my kids.  HT: High Calling Blogs

15.  What were they thinking?

I don’t think they really gave this much thought.  While I don’t care for IRS rules on the type of speech that comes out of churches.  I must say out of all the crummy church signs that I’ve seen.  This takes the cake.

HT: Kevin Tracy and Crummy Church Signs.

16.  CNN hires a conservative as a political contributor.  I’m looking out the window for the flying pigs.  I live in Iowa after all.  You never know.

HT: Jenn Sierra

17.  Seth Barnes & I had e-mailed a couple times back and forth.  He shared a story of mine in a post about fathers exasperating their children… something I’ve been known to do.  He also has a great post on “how to repent to your children.”

18.  Dan Kimball blogs about how we need to be engaged in social justice concerns… our good works, but we can not forget eternity and our commission to share the Gospel in words, which he says is often where the emerging church goes wrong.

What I am wondering about, is how do we avoid patterns of the past when the church jumps strongly in the realm of focusing on the gospel’s impact for this earth and in this life – but slowly neglects teaching and reminding people of the gospel’s impact about the reality of eternal heaven and eternal hell in the life to come after we die?

19.  Sign me up!  Oh wait… too late.  The Archdiocese of New York has launched a marketing campaign (“The World Needs Heroes”) to address the decreasing number of young men who enter priesthood. They have also advertised during Knicks games too. 

FYI: The above ad is fake, but hey it could be effective.  HT: Mike Anderson

20.  Is there a connection between the movie Cloverfield and the Emergent Church?  Craig Detweiler seems to think so.

If you hate Cloverfield (or don’t even know what it is), then you probably loathe emerging Christians. If you like Cloverfield, you’re likely to dig the emergent conversation. Both deliver on their grand promises in a novel way (that is decidedly not for everybody). But why does the film (and the emergent folks) inspire such antipathy? Why can’t we appreciate the next generation’s re-imagination of tired clichés?

Read the rest.

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It’s Friday, and I thought I’d share some not-so-serious items from the campaign trail that has been making the rounds this week.

Hillary Clinton was seen in a local bar in Crown Point, IN (not far from where I used to live in Valparaiso) slamming a whiskey shot and doing beer chasers.

I didn’t think she’s been in Congress long enough to be drinking like that.  I guess she does this pretty frequently.  I personally don’t think this is the best attribute for a President to have.  I know many of our Presidents have been know to drink (our current President excluded), but there is just something about this video that is disturbing to me.  What do you think?

A student, Peter Doocy, a junior political science major at Villanova University, had the opportunity to bounce a theory off of Senator John McCain as to why Hillary is frequenting bars. (Warning: Chris Matthews uses some colorful language at the end.)

I don’t think I’ve seen Senator McCain tripped up like that before on a question.

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Over the weekend there was a “Compassion Forum” held at Messiah College in Grantham, PA.  Both Senators Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were there to address people of faith in Pennsylvania before the upcoming April 22 primary in that state.

The forum covered several topics including abortion.

Clinton was asked whether life begins at conception — which opponents of abortion contend is a reality that makes any termination of a pregnancy the ending of a life.

“I believe the potential for life begins at conception,” Clinton said. “For me, it is also not only about a potential life. It is about the other lives involved. … I have concluded, after great, you know, concern and searching my own mind and heart over many years, … that individuals must be entrusted to make this profound decision, because the alternative would be such an intrusion of government authority that it would be very difficult to sustain in our kind of open society.”

The New York senator added that abortion should remain legal, safe and rare.

The two candidates appeared separately at Messiah College near Harrisburg, Pa., and briefly met as Clinton left the stage and Obama took her place. The moment of pleasantries and handshakes belied days of angry accusations between the two over Obama’s comments about bitter voters in small towns.

Asked whether life begins at conception, Obama said he didn’t know the answer.

“This is something that I have not, I think, come to a firm resolution on. I think it’s very hard to know what that means, when life begins. Is it when a cell separates? Is it when the soul stirs? … What I know, as I’ve said before, is that there is something extraordinarily powerful about potential life and that that has a moral weight to it that we take into consideration when we’re having these debates.”

Clinton is a Methodist. Obama is a member of the United Church of Christ.

Source: Fox News

Senator Clinton when come to her position on the issue of when life begins “after great, you know, concern and searching my own mind and heart over many years.”  Senator Obama still hasn’t come to a resolution.

The problem with Senator Clinton position lies in where she is going, as a “person of faith”, for answers to her questions.  You won’t find the answer in your own heart and mind. 

For both of the candidates the Bible is pretty clear regarding our personhood and provides a direct answer as to when life begins.  There shouldn’t be mass confusion over this for people who claim to follow Jesus Christ.  Life begins at conception, and our personhood is a reality before conception when one reads Psalm 139.

Plainly put, a position that holds that life does not begin at conception quite frankly is not scriptural and is an inconsistent view for a follower of Christ.

A question that I would have for Senator Obama, if he is unclear as to when life begins would he have a policy that is so anti-life when it comes to preborn children; even so far as voting against Illinois’ Born Alive Infant Protection Act that would protect children who survived an abortion?  That seems inconsistent with the answer he gives us during this forum.  His votes seem to say his mind is made up regarding this matter.

Another thing that Senator Clinton said that I feel needs to be addressed.

“For me, it is also not only about a potential life. It is about the other lives involved.”

The compassion argument, after all this is the “Compassion Forum”.  Often times those on the left when appealing to Christian voters will point out Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount.  For instance:

“Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy,” (Matthew 5:7, ESV).

The noun, mercy, in the Greek is eleos, this word when used in the Bible always deals with what we see of pain, misery, and distress.  The results of sin.  It doesn’t mean turning a blind eye to sin, but does mean extending relief, healing and help to those broken by sin.  Why?  Because we are broken by sin, as the very first beatitude states, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for they shall receive the Kingdom of God,” (Matthew 5:4, ESV).  (To hear recent sermons I’ve preached on the Beatitudes you can go here for part one and here for part two).

Jesus showed great mercy and compassion for the woman caught in adultery, but even told her to “sin no more,” (John 8:11).  When looked upon the crowds and had compassion on them because they were “harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd,” (Matthew 9:36).

I guess the question to ask is are we really being compassionate to those who are facing an unexpected pregnancy by allowing abortion?  I don’t think so, mercy doesn’t mean allowance for sin and compassion shouldn’t create victims which abortion does.

If mercy is relieving pain, misery and distress how is it merciful to add to that pain, misery and distress?  Which is exactly what abortion does when you look at the potential complications and risks involved in an abortion, when you look at what it could possibly do to the mother’s chances to become pregnant again after having an abortion, and looking at the mental health of those who have abortions.

No it seems to be that if Senator Clinton is looking at the other lives involved she would advocate: less red tape involving adoption and federal aid to help those wanting to adopt, less money to abortion providers and more to crisis pregnancy centers and maternity homes, and abstinence-based sex education to help prevent unexpected pregnancies (which actually works unlike “comprehensive” sex education).

Also Senator Clinton uses the phrase tossed around during her husband’s administration that abortion should be safe, legal and rare.  I think a good case has been made that abortion is not safe for mothers (and definitely not safe for the pre-born children).  It is legal, but the the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion is bad constitutional law and should be overturned.  Regarding rare… 50 million since 1973 would hardly count as being rare.

I guess people of faith in Pennsylvania need to ask themselves if Clinton and Obama’s position on abortion matches up with their values.  I would say not.

(If you want to read more on a Biblical framework for the pro-life position, check out my Against Abortion series of posts.)

Cross-posted at Red Blue Christian and From Their Own Mouths.

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