Archive for February 8th, 2008

“Who Wrote The Bible?” by Jack Kinsella

Friday, February 8th, 2008

There are two answers to that question. The short answer, and the easiest to defend, is also the most obvious. God did. The Bible says so. “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” (2nd Peter 1:21)

I say that is the easiest to defend because Christians don’t need much more evidence than that. The Bible is a living Book to those who are indwelt by the Holy Spirit.

To a Christian, the mere fact that there are people who devote their lives to arguing its Authorship is evidence of its Divine inspiration. It makes perfect sense to a Christian — it makes no sense at all to an unbeliever.

While it is a totally unsatisfactory answer to the skeptic, 1st Corinthians 1:18 proves itself to the believer every time he picks up the Book and ponders its truths:

“For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.”

Frankly, I don’t think it is possible to convince a skeptic by debating the truth of the Scriptures vs. their chosen ‘truths’ — it would be like debating whether something was red or mauve with a person blind from birth.

It takes a spiritual ‘operation’ to remove that blindness, but we can only point a person in the direction of the Surgeon. After that, they have to request the ‘operation’ for themselves.

But the Bible’s Authorship is proved by its very existence. There is the testimony of the forty different individuals chosen by God to record His Word. There are the acts of the Apostles;

2nd Peter 1:16 explains; “For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His Majesty.”

The Apostle Luke begins his testimony to Theodophilus; “Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us, Even as they delivered them unto us, which from the beginning were eyewitnesses, and ministers of the Word.” (Luke 1:1-2)

To deny the historical truth of the eyewitness testimony of the Apostles is tantamount to denying the historical accuracy of the eyewitness testimony of the witnesses to the assassination of Abraham Lincoln.

Each of the Apostles was an apostate Jew in the eyes of their friends and families. They were ostracized, insulted, beaten, run out of town, arrested, imprisoned, and generally hounded everywhere they went. Each of them was given an opportunity to save his own life by renouncing his testimony of Jesus.

And with the exception of the Apostle John, every single one of them chose a brutal, torturous death, instead. (The Apostle John was tortured by being boiled alive, but somehow survived and was exiled to the Island of Patmos. He was later freed and returned to serve as Bishop of Edessa in modern Turkey. He died as an old man, the only apostle to die peacefully.)

The skeptic denies their eyewitness testimony, but fails to give any reasonable explanation for why. Why would they all accept a life of misery and deprivation, culminating in a torturous death, just to spread a myth?

Does it seem reasonable that twelve guys would sit around a campfire and make up a story that ruined their lives (in the natural) just so they could be known by their first names 2000 years later?

Nobody denies the accuracy of Plato’s writings. Or Tacitus. Or Homer. Or Suetonius. Or Flavius Josephus (except the part where he refers to Jesus as an actual historical figure).

Before the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls our earliest Hebrew copy of the Old Testament was the Masoretic text dating around 800 A.D. The Dead Sea Scrolls date around the time of Jesus copied by the Qumran community, a Jewish sect living around the Dead Sea.

We also have the Septuagint which is a Greek translation of the Old Testament dating in the second century B.C. The oldest existing original manuscript of a New Testament book dates to 125 A.D. and was found in Egypt, some distance from where the New Testament was originally composed Asia Minor). In all, there are more than 24,000 ancient manuscripts against which to compare our modern Bible.

The number of manuscripts is astonishing, when compared to other universally-accepted ancient historical writings, such as Caesar’s “Gallic Wars” (10 Greek manuscripts, the earliest 950 years after the original), the “Annals” of Tacitus (2 manuscripts, the earliest 950 years after the original), Livy (20 manuscripts, the earliest 350 years after the original), and Plato (7 manuscripts).

New Testament manuscripts agree in 99.5% of the text (compared to only 95% for the Iliad). Most of the discrepancies are in spelling and word order.

A few words have been changed or added. There are two passages that are disputed but no discrepancy is of any doctrinal significance. Most Bibles include the options as footnotes when there are discrepancies. How could there be such accuracy over 1,400 years of copying?

Two reasons: The scribes that did the copying had meticulous methods for checking their copies for errors. 2) The Holy Spirit made sure we would have an accurate copy of God’s word so we would not be deceived.

Skeptics, liberals, and cults and false religions such as Islam that claim the Bible has been tampered with are completely proven false by the extensive, historical manuscript evidence.

But it doesn’t matter. The skeptics continue to assault the Bible on any and all fronts, applying the most unreasonable standards for accuracy imaginable.

They hate it, and they can’t even explain why. That is also, to the Christian, evidence of its Divine Origin.

That hatred is so blind, so unreasoning, and so irrational that it cannot be explained in any other way.

“Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man’s sake.” (Luke 6:22)

“Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you.” (1 John 3:13)

“Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.” (2nd Peter 3:3-4).

Original Link.

‘Mom’, ‘Dad’, Banned; Now 600,000 Students Could Go

Friday, February 8th, 2008

California is making a huge mess out of their education system. Now many parents are going to leave the school system in pursuit of traditional morals.

Only months after a new state law effectively banned “mom” and “dad” from California schools, a total of 600,000 students could follow because of what has been described as the “repudiation” of 2,000 years of Christian morality, according to leaders of a new campaign assembling education alternatives.

The campaign is called California Exodus, and is being headed by Ron Gleason, pastor of Grace Presbyterian Church in Yorba Linda, who said while the country excels in social, economic, scientific and political accomplishments, it “gets low grades on the education of its children.”

The issue is the state legislature’s adoption of Senate Bill 777, which requires only positive portrayals of homosexual, bisexual, transgender and other alternative lifestyle choices.

“First, the law allowed public schools to voluntarily promote homosexuality, bisexuality, and transsexuality. Then, the law required public schools to accept homosexual, bisexual, and transsexual teachers as role models for impressionable children. Now, the law has been changed to effectively require the positive portrayal of homosexuality, bisexuality, and transsexuality to six million children in California government-controlled schools,” said Randy Thomasson, chief of the Campaign for Children and Families and one of those who originally called for an abandonment of public schools.

“To rescue their children, loving parents need to find an alternative to government schools, and every church needs to make it a priority to help parents be in charge of their children’s education again,” he said.

He has condemned public school districts as “no longer a safe emotional environment for children” under the new law, signed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, that will introduce children as young as kindergarten to the homosexuality and other alternative lifestyle choices.

The law itself technically bans in any school texts, events, class or activities any discriminatory bias against those who have chosen alternative sexual lifestyles, Meredith Turney, legislative liaison for Capitol Resource Institute, said.

There are no similar protections for students with traditional or conservative lifestyles and beliefs, however. Offenders will face the wrath of the state Department of Education, up to and including lawsuits.

“SB 777 will result in reverse discrimination against students with religious and traditional family values. These students have lost their voice as the direct result of Gov. Schwarzenegger’s unbelievable decision. The terms ‘mom and dad’ or ‘husband and wife’ could promote discrimination against homosexuals if a same-sex couple is not also featured,” she said.

Karen England, chief of CRI, told WND that the law is not a list of banned words, including “mom” and “dad.” But she said the requirement is that the law bans discriminatory bias and the effect will be to ban such terminology.

“Having ‘mom’ and ‘dad’ promotes a discriminatory bias. You have to either get rid of ‘mom’ and ‘dad’ or include everything when talking about [parental issues],” she said. “They [promoters of sexual alternative lifestyles] do consider that discriminatory.”

Thomasson told WND private schools and homeschools will be the only sanctuaries left for California parents who love their children and want to protect their sexual innocence.”

Members of the coalition include the Exodus Mandate, which advocates Christian education for children, as well as Eagle Forum, whose president, Phyllis Schlafly, said there has been a great campaign to reform public schools, but it’s been unsuccessful.

Original Link.

Archbishop of Canterbury Seeks Adoption of Islamic Law

Friday, February 8th, 2008

The U.K. seems to be rushing to become a Islamic nation.

The chief of the 70-million-strong worldwide Anglican Communion advocates the establishment of Islamic law in Britain, drawing a rebuke from Prime Minister Gordon Brown, who suggested that perhaps British law would serve better.

In a recent interview with BBC Radio 4’s “The World At One Today,” Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams confirmed adoption of sharia “seems unavoidable.”

“As a matter of fact, certain conditions of sharia are already recognized in our society and under our law, so it is not as if we are bringing in an alien and rival system,” Williams said.

“We already have in this country a number of situations in which the internal laws of religious communities is (sic) recognized by the law of the land as justifying conscientious objections in certain circumstances,” he said.

However, according to published reports, Brown was of a different opinion.

“Our general position is that sharia law cannot be used as a justification for committing breaches of English law, nor should the principles of sharia law be included in a civil court for resolving contractual disputes,” a spokesman for Brown’s office said.

“If there are specific instances like stamp duty, where changes can be made in a way that’s consistent with British law and British values, in a way to accommodate the values of fundamental Muslims, that is something the government would look at,” the spokesman continued.

“In general terms, if there are specific instances that can be looked at on a case-by-case basis, that is something we can look at. But the prime minister believes British law should apply in this country, based on British values,” the spokesman said.

In the BBC interview, William advised the UK to “face up to the fact” that some residents do not relate to the British legal system and that Muslims could choose to have marital disputes or financial matters handled by a sharia court.

Original Link.

“Holland Postpones the Wilders Film about Islam” by Dr. Phyllis Chesler

Friday, February 8th, 2008

Every single day the handwriting on the sky becomes larger and clearer. The same Holland that decided they could not afford to pay the price of Aayan Hirsi Ali’s courage, has now decided to postpone Geert Wilder’s film about Islam. Simultaneously , in Canada, Islamists and multi-cultural relativists have challenged Mark Steyn and Ezra Levant. Lee Harris has an excellent and troubling article about this in the current issue of The Weekly Standard. (Sorry, I only have the hardcopy). Harris, the author of “The Suicide of Reason. Radical Islam’s Threat to the West,” reminds us that the west values both freedom of speech and the preservation of life. These two values are now seemingly on a collision course. Why? If we know that criticizing Islam will lead to the masscre of 100 innocent civilians somewhere in the world, we proceed at our own risk.

On the other hand, my friend Ibn Warraq pointed out to me that remaining silent may ultimately cost more lives.

My friends: What do you think? I am reposting an article about this temporary “ban” on the film. It was written by Denis Schultz.

Source http://webpages.charter.net/maxflack/A220.htm

BANNED: “THE PASSION OF THE WILDERS”

Geert Wilders had a point: “If I had announced that I was going to make a film about the fascist character of the Bible would there have been a crisis meeting of Holland’s security forces?” Wilders had just announced that his 10-minute film would be postponed for two weeks and that Dutch authorities had ordered him to leave the country.

A ten-minute film about the fascist character of the Bible…hasn’t that been done by CCN or by Ted Turner or somebody at the UN? Seems like one is aired every night. No one has called the cops. There have been no bomb threats. Bill Maher’s anti-Christian rants last longer than 10 minutes. Between Real Time and the Playboy Mansion, he’s spent more time abusing Christ than Herod and Judas Iscariot did combined.

Suppose someone did propose a 10-minute film about fascism in the Bible who would be the narrator? Got to have a narrator. Bill Maher? Rosie O’Donnell? Would bin Laden be invited to the Premier? Got to have be a Premier. Would Bill Clinton apologize for the behavior of Mother Teresa? There would have to be an apology. Who would be the first dhimmi at CNN or MSNBC to insist that there are many versions of Christianity and that Opie Taylor and Potsy Weber shouldn’t be confused with …with…ah, Tim McVegh or…or…Eric Rudolph…yes, Eric Rudolph…don’t want to tar all Christians with the David Koresh brush.

Columbia and Berkeley would probably snap up the film for its freshmen indoctrination programs. Chances are an Obama or Hillary administration would show it to the FBI and the CIA. It’s time they took a closer look at who they are hiring in this War on Terrorism. Tighten up those screening procedures…some of those fuzzy-cheeked applicants might have belonged to the Catholic League while in college or worse…been a Promise Keeper. Can’t take chances with national security.

Would the Vatican protest—warn the producers not to show the film under penalty of excommunication? Would they get Ibrahim Hooper’s backing?

Wilders, 44, continued: “Would I have received as many death threats as I have done since announcing I was making a film about the Koran?” Of course not! He would be praised for his bravery; invited on The View; they would name a faculty lounge at Berkeley in his honor. Half the US Congress would say they might disagree with what he says but would defend to the death his right to say it—unless he used the N word or was insensitive to some minority group (list available on request).

Iran has warned the Netherlands what will happen if the Dutch are so foolish as to air the Wilders film. “The Iranian parliament will request to reconsider our relationship with it (the Netherlands),” said Alaeddin Boroujerdi, head of Majlis National Security. Iran is currently reconsidering relationships with the United States, Israel, Australia, Denmark, Lower Slobbobvia, Shangrila…

“In Iran, insulting Islam is a very sensitive matter and if the movie is broadcast it will arouse a wave of popular hatred that will be directed towards any government that insults Islam.” Succinct! Let’s see…Pim Fortuyn insulted Islam; Submission insulted Islam; Theo van Gogh insulted Islam; Salman Rushdie insulted Islam; the Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons insulted Islam; the rondellhund insulted Islam; Kafirs gnawing on pork rinds insult Islam; women in miniskirts insult Islam; ringing church bells insult Islam. It is easy to insult Islam. Muslims are the most sensitive and most easily insulted people in the world and also the most tolerant and peaceful—and that is why every offender of Islam is given a day in court except during waves of popular hatred.

In Afghanistan a journalist who insulted Islam has been sentenced to death. He had questioned the Islamic marriage bed. Why should Muslim men be allowed four wives and Muslim women only one husband he asked? Would an American Horace Greeley have dared to ask Mitt Romney that question? Muslim clerics were humiliated—to suggest that a Muslim man couldn’t satisfy four women—with appropriate separate rooms—would be to question his fitness for the 72 virgins awaiting his expertise in Allah’s Great Whorehouse in the Sky. Is it any wonder that the Court’s decision was immediately praised by the Afghan parliament?

In Pakistan, Muslim men are abducting and killing Christian boys, not because of hatred though that is part of it, but to harvest their body parts for sale on the black market. In Saudi Arabia, a Nigerian woman was beheaded for drug trafficking in the holy city of Mecca. It’s a dark side to something.

Meanwhile in Washington DC, Floris van Hovell, spokesperson for the Dutch Embassy said, “The government is taking the announcement of this movie quite seriously. Obviously, because the movie hasn’t been made, we cannot say anything about the movie until the movie has been shown, but the message Mr. Wilders has told us he wants to portray is disturbing.” But not as disturbing as murdering young Christian boys for their body parts or beheading drug traffickers in Mecca? Right?

Maybe it is Wilders. “I believe our culture is much better than the retarded Islamic cultures,” he said. “Ninety-nine percent of the intolerance in the world comes back to the Islamic religion and the Koran.”

Well—sure, if one counts organ harvesting, honor killings, church burnings, suicide bombings and female genital mutilation, but Bill Maher knows about all this, doesn’t he?

———————————————-

Dr. Phyllis Chesler is the well known author of classic works, including the bestseller Women and Madness (1972) and The New Anti-Semitism (2003). She has just published The Death of Feminism: What’s Next in the Struggle for Women’s Freedom (Palgrave Macmillan), as well as an updated and revised edition of Women and Madness. She is an Emerita Professor of psychology and women’s studies, the co-founder of the Association for Women in Psychology (1969) and the National Women’s Health Network (1974). She is currently on the Board of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East and lives in New York City. Her website is www.phyllis-chesler.com.
We are delighted to have Dr. Chesler as a contributor to the Jesus is Lord, A Worshipping Christian’s Blog.

Original Link.