Archive for August 18th, 2010

US Appeals Court Panel: Law Against Faking Receipt of Military Medals is Unconstitutional

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

Our judicial system is insane.
Now it is acceptable, in the name of “freedom of speech”, to lie about military service and awards.
Where will it end?

PASADENA, Calif. – A three-year-old federal law that makes it a crime to falsely claim to have received a medal from the U.S. military is unconstitutional, an appeals court panel in California ruled Tuesday.

The decision involves the case of Xavier Alvarez of Pomona, Calif., a water district board member who said at a public meeting in 2007 that he was a retired Marine who received the Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest military decoration.

Alvarez was indicted in 2007. He pleaded guilty on condition that he be allowed to appeal on First Amendment grounds. He was sentenced under the Stolen Valor Act to more than 400 hours of community service at a veterans hospital and fined $5,000.

A panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals sided with him in a 2-1 decision Tuesday, agreeing that the law was a violation of his free-speech rights. The majority said there’s no evidence that such lies harm anybody, and there’s no compelling reason for the government to ban such lies.

The dissenting justice insisted that the majority refused to follow clear Supreme Court precedent that false statements of fact are not entitled to First Amendment protection.

The act revised and toughened a law that forbids anyone to wear a military medal that wasn’t earned. The measure sailed through Congress in late 2006, receiving unanimous approval in the Senate.

Dozens of people have been arrested under the law at a time when veterans coming home from wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are being embraced as heroes. Many of the cases involve men who simply got caught living a lie without profiting from it. Almost all the impostors have been ordered to perform community service.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles said it was deciding whether to appeal Tuesday’s ruling.

Original Link.

Arab TV Chief: 9/11 Mosque Would be ‘Monument’ to Terror

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

The people pressing for the construction of this mosque are either opportunist or terrorist supporters who are only interested in once again “shoving it” in the faces of us infidels.

The director of a Dubai-based, Arab television network writes that most of the world’s Muslims couldn’t care less about building a mosque near Ground Zero and that plans to do so would only create a “monument” to terrorists.

Abd Al-Rahman Al-Rashed, director-general of Al-Arabiya TV, wrote a column in the Aug. 16, 2010, London daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat arguing that President Obama was wasting his time championing construction of the proposed mosque, which Al-Rashed says the majority of world’s Muslims don’t want anyway.

“I can’t imagine that Muslims [actually] want a mosque at this particular location, because it will become an arena for the promoters of hatred, and a monument to those who committed the crime,” writes Al-Rashed in the column, which was translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute. “Moreover, there are no practicing Muslims in the area who need a place to worship, because it is a commercial district. Is there anyone who is [really] eager [to build] this mosque?”

He adds, “I do not think that the majority of Muslims want to build a monument or a place of worship that tomorrow may become a source of pride for the terrorists and their Muslim followers, nor do they want a mosque that will become a shrine for the haters of Islam.”

New York Islamic leader Faisal Abdul Rauf, president of the Cordoba Initiative, is leading the plan to build a proposed 13-story, $100 million Islamic cultural center and mosque near the corner of Park Place and West Broadway – about two blocks from the site of the 9-11 terrorist attacks.

Al-Rashed, whose network competes with the more extremist-friendly Al Jazeera TV, condemns Rauf’s plan.

“The individual who submitted the building application – I do not know whether he [really] wants [to build] a mosque that will promote reconciliation, or whether he is [just] an investor looking for quick profits. Because the idea of a mosque right next to a site of destruction is not at all an intelligent one,” Al-Rashed writes. “The last thing Muslims want today is to build a religious center that provokes others, or a symbolic mosque that people will visit as a [kind of] museum next to a cemetery.”

President Obama has released a pair of statements in regards to the planned mosque, qualifying support for the religious freedom of Muslims to build the mosque – even in the shadow that was once cast by the World Trade Center – with a hint that the location of the proposed construction may not be the wisest choice.

Al-Rashed’s column addresses the president’s comments as well:

“U.S. President Barack Obama took a difficult position when he supported the construction of a mosque on a site where 3,000 U.S. citizens were killed by Al-Qaeda terrorists on Sept. 11, 2001,” Al-Rashed writes. “Though the president’s position was correct in principle, that is, in terms of the principle of freedom of worship, I think he took a political stand [on an issue] that is unnecessary and unimportant, even for the Muslims. This mosque is not an issue for Muslims, and they do not care about its construction.”

Al-Rashed’s comments prompted commentary from William Kristol, editor of The Weekly Standard:

Al-Rashed’s statement, Kristol writes, “should mean the end of plans for a mosque near Ground Zero. Mr. Al-Rashed supports President Obama’s stand for the mosque in principle. … But his practical case against building the mosque is irrefutable. It should lead well-meaning liberals to join with us dastardly conservatives … in calling for the organizers to shelve the plans for a mosque at this site.”

Original Link.

14th Amendment Being Misinterpreted

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

-14th Amendment to the United States Constitution

Congressman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) says the popular idea of automatic citizenship is based on a misinterpretation of the 14th Amendment. “[That] amendment was passed in 1868 right after the Civil War to give citizens’ rights to the slaves,” he explains. “The author of the 14th Amendment on the Senate floor actually said it did not apply to — quote — ‘foreigners.’

Still, Smith says he does not favor changing the amendment. “I think if Congress simply passes a law saying that the United States should do what every other industrialized nation in the world does…and that is, require at least one parent to be in the country legally, that we can do it by statute,” he offers.

Smith says changes will not be easy. He claims some Democrats remain dead-set on offering amnesty in exchange for votes. “Two-thirds of the people likely to get amnesty have no skills and no education,” he offers. “That’s why the labor unions want to sign them up. That’s why the Democratic Party wants to sign them up.”

Original Link.

“Prophecy with Purpose” by Terry James

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

One of the most false and cutting accusations launched at the belief that the Bible teaches that a person cannot lose his or her salvation when truly born again (John 3:3) is: “If you believe once saved, always saved, you are saying that people can live any way they want without fear of punishment.” Or so the line of condemning criticism goes.

The absolute assurance of eternal security, of course, engenders no such thought within the mind truly regenerated by the saving power of Jesus Christ. The Bible teaches that the Lord convicts His children in their spirits, and that habitual, unrepented-of sin will result in severe penalties–even physical death, in some cases. The Heavenly Father’s patience is longsuffering, but it is not infinite.

A person who is a child of God cannot sin without severe repercussions, if repentance isn’t forthcoming. But, that person will never be kicked out of God’s family. Never.

A kindred sort of accusation is thrown at those who believe in the Pre-Trib view of Bible prophecy. The Pre-Tribulation view, of course, is the one we at Rapture Ready believe God’s Word teaches. It is the view that Jesus Christ will call all who are born again to Himself before the Tribulation, which is the last seven years of history leading to the Second Advent (Rev. 19: 11).

The angry diatribe against the Pre-Trib Rapture view–by even genuine Christians, in many cases–usually goes something like this: “People like you, who believe that the Lord is going to rapture them before the Tribulation, think you can live however you want, because you think and teach falsely that you are going to be rescued before God’s judgment and wrath fall, no matter what.”

The non-Christian accusers who castigate those of us who hold the Pre-Trib rapture view have their own version. It goes something like: “Christians who believe like that don’t care anything about making the world better. You even hope for things to get worse and worse. You wish for earthquakes, famines, pestilence, war in the Middle East, and for Armageddon to hurry up and get here so you will go to your pie in the sky, and watch the rest of us get ours.”

Although the first criticism is absolutely not true, I have to admit that, regarding the second, too often I’ve sensed–even heard–such sentiments from some of those who believe in the Pre-Trib rapture. And, it is entirely the wrong attitude for the Christian to hold. There are no excuses for wanting the Christ-rejecting world of non-believers to be the recipients of God’s judgment and wrath. It is only by God’s unfathomable grace that every one of us isn’t headed into that time of unprecedented horror.

No matter how–to use Lot’s King James Version word–“vexed” we becomes by the debauched, debased actions of the lost world around us, our job as Christ’s children–His representatives here on earth–is of a completely different nature than wanting to see them “get what’s coming” to them. The changed nature produced by being born again into God’s eternal family should make you and me do just the opposite of wanting them, in our vexation, to get what we see as coming to them.

The Christian whose spirit is attuned to the Holy Spirit’s desire for the lost doesn’t want to see them “get what’s coming to them” either during the Tribulation or upon death. Rather, we want to do all within our power to keep them from having to go through the coming time of God’s judgment and wrath. That’s what Christ’s Great Commission to His disciples before He ascended to sit at the Father’s right hand is all about, you see. That is what God’s love–love that those who have Christ indwelling them possess–is all about. (Read Matthew 28:18-20.)

In the same vein, that’s what Bible prophecy is all about. Prophecy given in God’s Word has purpose–profound purpose. Bible prophecy has at its center the commission from the Lord to forewarn of God’s judgment and wrath to come upon all who oppose Him–the Lord of Heaven and Creator of all things. It is not the hatred of God for the lost people of this fallen planet that drives prophecy. It is the love of God that powers His prophetic Word. It must be the Christian’s desire, therefore, to study Bible prophecy and put forth those forewarnings out of a spirit of God’s love, not through an anger-filled abhorrence of those who are lost.

Christians who do study prophecy–and they seem to be few these days, I’m sad to have to say–are often heard wondering about when Christ will call the church (born-again believers) in the rapture. Everything seems so ripe for His plucking His people from this sin-darkened sphere.

Nothing and no one can change God’s timing for His next catastrophic intervention into earth’s history. It will happen exactly on time, as He has determined since before the foundation of this world. However, we might as believers look to ourselves for the Lord’s–often in our view–delay in calling us as outlined in 1 Corinthians 15:51-55 and 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18.

The apostle Peter gave the heart of the reason Christ hasn’t raptured His church: “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Pet. 3:9).

The purpose of Bible prophecy is to show the love of God to a lost and otherwise doomed world. God is not willing that anyone should perish (die in his or her sins), but that all should come to repentance (accept Jesus Christ as the one and only sacrifice for sin that God will accept).

The Lord is “longsuffering.” The reason, I’m convinced, that the Lord seems so “slack” to many in His coming is because those same people have neglected their duty to share the love of God with the lost–the lost whom God loves so very much that He sent His only begotten Son in order that they not perish.

It is well past the time for God’s people to begin investing in getting the message of the love of God to those who will otherwise not hear the warning of deadly things soon to befall this Christ-rejecting planet. Considering these times that so dramatically are signaling the coming Tribulation, Bible prophecy can and must be used as a productive tool for evangelism.

— Terry

Original Link.