Archive for December 8th, 2006

The Birth of John the Baptist Foretold

Friday, December 8th, 2006

5 In the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah; his wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron. 6 Both of them were upright in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commandments and regulations blamelessly. 7 But they had no children, because Elizabeth was barren; and they were both well along in years.

8 Once when Zechariah’s division was on duty and he was serving as priest before God, 9 he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to go into the temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10 And when the time for the burning of incense came, all the assembled worshipers were praying outside.

11 Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. 12 When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. 13 But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John. 14 He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, 15 for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from birth. 16 Many of the people of Israel will he bring back to the Lord their God. 17 And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

18 Zechariah asked the angel, “How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well along in years.”

19 The angel answered, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news. 20 And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day this happens, because you did not believe my words, which will come true at their proper time.”

21 Meanwhile, the people were waiting for Zechariah and wondering why he stayed so long in the temple. 22 When he came out, he could not speak to them. They realized he had seen a vision in the temple, for he kept making signs to them but remained unable to speak.

23 When his time of service was completed, he returned home. 24 After this his wife Elizabeth became pregnant and for five months remained in seclusion. 25 “The Lord has done this for me,” she said. “In these days he has shown his favor and taken away my disgrace among the people.”

Luke 1:5-25 (New International Version)

Poor Zechariah. Never in all his experiences, did he ever expect to meet an angel face to face. It’s no wonder he expressed doubt about what he was hearing. As an old man, he had seen and heard many things. In his experience, old people didn’t have babies.
I have to smile a bit when I visualize Gabriel standing there listening to Zechariah. If an angle could ever be indignant, I believe Gabriel was as close to it as an angel can get.
“I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news. 20 And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day this happens, because you did not believe my words, which will come true at their proper time.”
Let’s look at this in another way.
“I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God…”
What is required of a being to be allowed into the presence of God?
Well, let’s see, one of the main things is, one would have to be sinless.
Man is far from sinless, yet we are told that we will be allowed to enter God’s Glory if we do one thing. That one thing is to accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. To believe with all our heart that He is who He said He was. To believe that He was born as a child, lived sinless on earth, died sinless on the cross as the ultimate sacrifice for our sins and was raised from the dead three days later to eventually ascend into heaven to the right hand of God.
That’s all that needs to happen in order to assure a place with God in Heaven.
Paul, in Romans 10:9 (New International Version) writes: “That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
Look how easy that is?

Baker Report Asks Israel to Give Up Land ‘Vital To Survivability’

Friday, December 8th, 2006

Give me a Break!! Israel has given up enough. It’s time for the Arabs to give up just as much in return.
By the way, the Baker report needs to find its way into the nearest trash can.

Jerusalem (CNSNews.com) – In exchange for Syrian help in calming the situation in Iraq, the Iraq Study Group is asking Israel to give up land “vital to its survivability,” a senior Israeli lawmaker said Thursday.

Much of the bipartisan panel’s report released on Wednesday dealt with the situation in Iraq, but it also said the U.S. could only achieve its Middle East aims if it dealt directly with the Arab-Israeli conflict – a proposition that Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and experts here rejected.

The recommendations also call for the involvement of Iran and Syria – both considered terror-sponsoring states by the U.S. government – in attempts to calm the situation in Iraq.

The panel, co-chaired by former Secretary of State James Baker and former U.S. Congressman Lee Hamilton, says Israel, Syria and Lebanon should hold “unconditional” peace talks.

Syria must stop trying to undermine the Lebanese government (Syria has never recognized Lebanon’s sovereignty), cooperate with investigations into Lebanese political assassinations blamed on Syria, stop helping terrorist groups in Lebanon and the Palestinian areas, and seal its border with Iraq.

“In exchange for these actions and in the context of a full and secure peace agreement, the Israelis should return the Golan Heights, with a U.S. security guarantee,” which could include an international force on the strategic plateau, the report says.

Yuval Steinitz, a Likud lawmaker who serves on the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, said that he expected the U.S. would not “dictate the end result of future negotiations” ahead of time.

“The Golan Heights is extremely vital to Israel’s survivability in the long term,” he told Cybercast News Service.

Before Israel captured the plateau during the 1967 Six-Day War, the Syrians used the Heights overlooking the Sea of Galilee to fire at Israeli communities in the plain below.

Israel has been involved in negotiations with Syria on and off for years, but without resolution.

In 2000, President Clinton briefly tried to broker a deal between Israel and then Syrian President Hafez Assad. Talks broke down over the extent of the land to be returned to Syria.

While the country is divided over what to do about most of the territory controlled by Israel and claimed by the Arabs, there is broad consensus among Israelis that the Golan Heights, which Israel annexed in 1981, should not be surrendered.

Steinitz questioned why Israel should be expected to make concessions and be generous to Syria given the fact it had supplied the Hizballah terrorist organization with thousands of rockets launched from Lebanon at northern Israeli cities and towns over the summer.

He also accused Syria of trying to topple Lebanon’s democratic government and noted that senior Syrian officials have been implicated in the killing of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and suspected of involvement in other assassinations.

Original Link.

GLSEN Used NY Student Conference to Push Homosexual Agenda, Witness Says

Friday, December 8th, 2006

(AgapePress) – An eyewitness to a student conference in New York State that was sponsored by a homosexual activist group says parents should be warned about the organization’s efforts to indoctrinate and influence young people to accept the homosexual agenda.

The Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network, or GLSEN, recently hosted the eighth annual “Healing the Hurt Conference” in White Plains, New York. According to Jeanne Sparks, a Christian activist who observed the event, one of the keynote speakers there called on middle school and high school students to rebel against parental and governmental authorities that do not support homosexuality.

Sparks says the speaker, former civil rights attorney Dani Newsum, referred to Colorado’s marriage amendment as “obscene violence to the Constitution” and predicted that “Southern Baptists will apologize in 100 years to [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer] people.”

However, the Christian activist notes, a homosexual minister who spoke at the conference went even further. “This minister said, ‘I’m not waiting a hundred years,'” she recalls. And if the rhetoric heard at the White Plains event is any indication, Sparks points out, homosexuals are clearly pushing for same-sex marriage. “They do not want civil unions,” she insists, noting that the homosexual minister who spoke said he was “ordained one year ago, not to be part of an institution but to change it.”

Sparks encourages concerned parents to find out whether their local school has a “Gay-Straight Alliance” club of any kind and, if so, to oppose it vigorously. “I really don’t believe that parents actually know what GLSEN is all about and what these conferences are all about and what Gay-Straight Alliances in their schools are all about,” she says; but she believes the homosexual group sponsors these conferences and student clubs to indoctrination young people.

At the recent “Healing the Hurt Conference,” the Christian attendee points out, “There was one workshop where there was an open-mike forum, and one young girl said she forged the papers to be there, so her parents didn’t know.” And a show of hands revealed that among “almost half of the students in the conference, in this particular workshop, their parents did not know they were there,” she says.

The main objective of the GLSEN-sponsored conference, Sparks adds, was to encourage students to take up homosexual activism and “to change laws” to align with the homosexual agenda. Parents would be appalled, she contends, if they knew what their children were hearing at the event.

Original Link.

Democratic Opposition Buries Fetal Pain Bill — and Along With It, Likely More Babies

Friday, December 8th, 2006

Y’all got two more years of me telling (and showing) you what y’all put in power in Washington, so get used it. I’m not going to let you forget.

(AgapePress) – There’s disappointment today in the ranks of the nation’s pro-life movement as the House of Representatives has failed to pass a bill that would recognize the pain an unborn baby feels when it is being aborted. An overwhelming number of Democrats led the effort to defeat the bill.

The Unborn Child Pain Awareness Act (H.R. 6099) would require abortionists to inform women seeking abortions late in their pregnancy (20 weeks or more after fertilization) to be told their baby will experience pain. The bill would not require anesthesia; it would, however, protect a doctor’s right to inform the woman of any risks to her according to the doctor’s own best medical judgment.

A majority of the House actually voted in favor of H.R. 6099 on Wednesday night by a margin of 250-162. However, the measure — which was introduced by New Jersey’s Chris Smith, an outspoken pro-life Republican — required a two-thirds majority to pass, and the end result was failure. Of the 162 who voted to defeat the measure, 152 were Democrats. Nine Republicans and one Independent joined them. (See complete roll call vote)

The president of Washington, DC-based Concerned Women for America (CWA) was among the many pro-lifers on Capitol Hill who had hoped the House would pass the bill. Wendy Wright says women deserve to know the facts before making a decision that inflicts “extreme pain” on their baby, ending his or her life in a fashion akin to torture.

“Regrettably,” says Wright, “congressmen — many who denounced the use of torture against suspected terrorists — have voted to not let women know that abortion will torture their innocent unborn babies. Abortion not only kills a baby, it tortures them.”

Douglas Johnson, legislative director for National Right to Life, says it is no small thing that 60 percent of the House endorsed the bill. But he believes that the other 40 percent “will have to explain why they favor anti-pain laws for animals used for research or food, but not for unborn humans.”

CWA’s Lanier Swann touches on that same apparent inconsistency. “There are strict federal humane slaughter rules which mandate that animals experience death in the least painful way possible,” she says in a press release. “Unborn human babies deserve that courtesy times ten.”

Swann contends that fewer women would follow through with plans for an abortion if they simply knew their unborn child would experience excruciating pain. “Evidence shows that the baby feels the pain even more acutely than [does] the mother,” she says. “An informed mother might think twice before letting an abortionist inflict this inhumane torture on her child.”

The defeat may also raise questions about the sincerity of claims from the Democrats that their party also has family values — a claim that many voters apparently accepted when the party was lifted to majority status in last month’s election.

Original Link.

“Muslim Woman Cites Gym After Interrupted Prayer” or “The Gym Jihad”

Friday, December 8th, 2006

What the press reported:

DEARBORN — Fitness USA, a gym chain, is investigating an alleged civil rights violation involving a local Muslim woman who says her afternoon prayer was interrupted by a fellow patron, and that her complaint to management about the situation was rejected.

“The manager told me, ‘You have to respect her (the patron), but she does not have to respect your God,’ ” said Wardeh Sultan of Dearborn. “I’ve had my membership for seven or eight years, and I’ve never had a problem with praying there.

“I told that manager, ‘I can’t believe you said that’ ” Sultan said. “Honestly, I feel humiliated and I feel ashamed, right now, to go back to Fitness USA.”

Local representatives of Fitness USA, which operates branches throughout Metro Detroit and in two other states, referred all inquiries regarding the matter to their corporate offices.

“We will, as we will with any complaint involving our staff and a member, be doing a full and thorough investigation of the matter and take any appropriate action we need to take,” said Jodi Berry, executive director of Fitness USA. “We want every member to get a good exercise experience every time they come to the club.”

Berry said she learned of the complaint on Monday.

The allegations are among a series of recent complaints by Muslims who say they are free to practice their religion in the United States, until someone tells them they cannot. Recently, the same Fitness USA facility enacted a new dress code to allow Muslim women to wear more modest clothing, in compliance with some Islamic practices.

Original Link.

And now for the Truth:

A Muslim woman in Dearborn, Mich., lodged a complaint Tuesday against Fitness USA for an alleged civil rights violation involving a fellow gym patron. According to Jodi Berry, executive director of Fitness USA, Wardeh Sultan was praying in front of another member’s locker when the member wanted access to her belongings inside the locker. The inconvenienced patron tried to interrupt Ms. Sultan, but she remained prostrate in front of the locker and an altercation ensued. A manager was called into the locker room to intervene.

Ms. Sultan later complained that the Fitness USA management was unconcerned about the humiliation she suffered when her prayers were interrupted. She stated that the gym personnel were insensitive, rejected her complaints and did not satisfactorily intervene on her behalf. Ms. Sultan further reported that the manager told her, “You have to respect her (the other patron), but she does not have to respect your god.”

The incident is yet another example of special treatment Muslims are increasingly demanding nationwide. Last April, at the Lincoln Park, Mich. Fitness USA location, 200 Muslim women signed a petition demanding separate workout times for men and women, or, at minimum, installation of a divider between the men’s and women’s gym sections. A screen was eventually erected to obstruct the view of the women’s facilities. Another Fitness USA facility recently revised a dress code to allow Muslim women to wear more modest dress while exercising.

Original Link.

Victory vs. Appeasement

Friday, December 8th, 2006

Victory vs Appeasement

Cox and Forkum have made an excellent illustration of the differences in attitude of how to win a war. From World War II’s victory at any cost to today’s “enlightened” society of appeasement.

Original Link.

Changed CAPTCHA for Better Spam Control

Friday, December 8th, 2006

OK, the spam thing was getting crazy. Most of it was getting caught by the Anti-Spam software, but that is a second line of defense. Somehow the bots were getting past the Captcha.
I have upgraded to a stronger Captcha. This should make it harder to spam the blog.
If any of you have problems with it, please let me know and I can address it and make it work better. It takes a moment for the the Captcha to load, after the rest of the page has loaded, so give it a moment to show up.
Sorry to have to do this, but the spam is hitting all the blogs and websites very heavily these days. Until the server admins shut it down, we’re going to have to try to control it on our end.
Thanks and God Bless!
-Steve