John Kerry Is A Symptom Of Democrats Sickness/Double-Standards

The above was the statement made by Kerry, below, Mark Levin quickly goes through the anti-Semitic background and how John Kerry is a symptom of the sickness.

(Gay Patriot: http://tinyurl.com/maq9sle)

How precious, this Democrat Congressman was speaking about “racism” on the Nation of Islam Radio. Guys who think that blacks are genetically superior to other races/ethnicity’s… THEEE definition of racist:

Webster’s says this:

a. belief or doctrine that inherent differences among the various human races determine cultural or individual achievement, usually involving the idea that one’s own race is superior and has the right to rule others.

So we see that Webster’s main definition are based on a belief in a genetic superiority of one ethnicity (falsely called race) over another. A more in-depth definition comes from “Safire’s Political Dictionary,” and reads (in-part):

racism Originally, an assumption that an individual’s abilities and potential were determined by his biological race, and that some races were inherently superior to others; now, a political-diplomatic accusation of harboring or practicing such theories. “This word [racism],” wrote Harvard Professor J. Anton De Haas in November 1938, “has come into use the last six months, both in Europe and this country… Since so much has been said about conflicting isms, it is only natural that a form was chosen which suggested some kind of undesirable character.” In fact, racism came into use two years earlier, in his 1936 book The Coming American Fascism, Lawrence Dennis wrote, “If … it be assumed that one of our values should be a type of racism which excludes certain races from citizenship, then the plan of execution should provide for the annihilation, deportation, or sterilization of the excluded races.” Racism, a shortening of racialism, was at first directed against Jews. In the nineteenth century, anti-Semites who foresaw a secular age in which religion might not be such a popular rallying force against Jews put forward the idea of Jewishness being less a religion than a race. Adolf Hitler, with his “master race” ideology, turned theory into savage practice….

(Taken from my letter to my youngest son’s high school: http://www.scribd.com/doc/115644033/A-Note-From-a-Concerned-Parent-Racism-Invoked-in-the-Classroom)

LET ME BE CLEAR, as you read the following. I do not think Obama is a Muslim. What I do think is that Obama joining a church that is so far off the historical Christian position of just about everything taints his views of other religions. In other words, his wrongly held views of salvation and Christianity affect greatly how he views — for instance, a cult breakaway from Islam. A worldview that says Jesus is just like the Buddha, Muhammad, Moses, etc, causes him [Obama] to be wildly inconsistent with the historical ethos of the Christian faith, and our [America’s] founding principles.

From an older post:


 

Some history: The NOI was created by Wallace D. Fard, also known as Wallace Fard Muhammad. Fard claimed to come from the Islamic city of Mecca. He began a mosque in Detroit in 1930. He taught that Christianity should be rejected since it was the “slave-master’s religion.” In 1934 Fard disappeared and was neither seen nor heard from again. Fard was succeeded by Elijah Muhammad (Elijah Poole). Elijah Poole was born in Sandersville, Ga. on October 7, 1898. He changed his name to Elijah Muhammad after joining the NOI. After Fard disappeared, Elijah took over the leadership of NOI…..

The Nation of Islam claims that God is a man. “God is a man and we just cannot make Him other than man” (Elijah Muhammad, Message to the Blackman in America, [Chicago: Muhammad’s Temple No. 2], p. 6). The NOI teaches that Fard was Allah in physical form (Elijah Muhammad, The Fall of America, p. 236, as reprinted in “The Mother Plane,” The Final Call 15, no. 25 [July 16, 1996]: 19). According to Elijah Muhammad, Fard told him, “My name is Mahdi; I am God” (Elijah Muhammad, Message to the Blackman, p. 17). The NOI continues to teach that Fard is Allah. The current NOI statement is published in every issue of their weekly newspaper, The Final Call, in an article titled “What the Muslims Believe.” It states, “12. WE BELIEVE that Allah (God) appeared in the Person of Master W. Fard Muhammad, July, 1930; the long-awaited ‘Messiah’ of the Christians and the ‘Mahdi’ of the Muslims.” The NOI denies that God is spirit. The NOI claims that Christians worship an “invisible spook somewhere in space”(Elijah Muhammad, Message to the Blackman, p. 5). According to Elijah Muhammad, “God is in person, and stop looking for a dead Jesus for help, but pray to Him whom Jesus prophesied would come after Him. He who is alive and not a spook” (Ibid., p. 3).

  • Obama’s father was a Muslim and not an atheist;
  • Obama attended a Muslim school before he attended a catholic one;
  • Obama was excused once a week from the catholic school for Muslim religious studies;
  • Every Friday Obama prayed at a mosque;
  • Obama did not convert to Christianity — he converted to a twisted/aberrant Christian faith;
  • Obama’s church gave a racist Muslim — who thinks the white man was created by a mad scientist on the Island of Cyprus 6,000 years ago, and who believes was taken up to a UFO where he was told by Jesus and the founder of the Nation of Islam, the “honorable” Elijah Muhammad, that he was the “little Messiah” — a “Lifetime Achievement Award.”
  • Obama’s picture was put on the church’s magazine cover along with the “honorable” Elijah Muhammad, Louise Farrakhan;
  • Obama’s church’s magazine, “Trumpet,” also had Farrakhan full shots on the magazine cover;
  • Obama’s pastor was a “former” Muslim and black nationalist;
  • Obama’s church also published Hamas’ “terror manifesto” and compared Hamas’ charter that calls for murder of Jews to Declaration of Independence.

From another post:


Obama’s pastor not only was a minister in The Nation of Islam, an anti-Semitic/racist group, but the church’s book store sells sermons by Louise Farrakhan, who teaches that the white man was created on the Island of Cyprus by a mad scientist, Yakub. (Mr. Farrakhan also believes he was taken up on a UFO to meet God, and was told he was a little messiah, take note also that he was directly involved in the deaths of police officers as well.) Louise Farrakhan was featured twice on the church’s magazine which reach 20,000[plus] homes in the Chicago area. Even placing on the cover with Louise Farrakhan a third time the founder of the Nation of Islam, Elijah Muhammad. Elijah Muhammad likewise taught that the white man was created by Yakub 6,600 years ago. Walter, Louise Farrakhan teaches that the Jews in Israel do not belong there, and that the true Jews are the black people. Louise Farrakhan was invited into Obama’s church, to the pulpit and given a “lifetime achievement award.” In fact, the New Black Panthers and members of the Nation of Islam often times sat in the pews for sermons by Rev. Wright, whom Obama called a mentor.

Shame, The Holy, and Pornography ~ Men, Listen Up

Ravi Zacharias does a great job in explaining what pornography does to shame, the Holy, and the insatiable fire of not being able to satisfy men’s archetype they build in their minds eye. (Posted by: Religio-Political Talk) One of the best, relatable parts of this larger video that will help explain to men who struggle with the Holy what they are doing, and that is, they are desensitizing themselves to detect shame. Which our society needs a good dose of.

It’s OK to Leave the Plantation ~ Bundy & Black Conservatives

  • “I’ll have those n*ggers voting Democratic for the next 200 years.”

Lyndon B. Johnson to two governors on Air Force One according Ronald Kessler’s Book, “Inside The White House

 

When I first heard Cliven Bundy’s remarks about the “ghetto” and how he thought “Negroes” picken’ cotton was better than what they have… I was saddened. I had already come to the conclusion that Cliven was not entirely correct with his view of Federalism, but that the Federal government was wrongly pressing an issue of importance for those who wish to shrink government. And remember, Bundy is the last of over 50 ranchers/farmers in his area whom were effectively chased out of business by Federal regulations.

I still think a vested interest in what went on (and is going on in a state where the Federal government is in control of 81% of the land in that state) in the larger sense on the Bundy Ranch deserves our attention. An earlier post explains why we should care: Confused About the Ongoing Bundy Ranch Debacle? Read On…

There are some good (macro) signs coming from this, and that is that the states are eyeballing Federalism in the classical sense. And directly related to the “Bundy Standoff” our side of the country is looking at curtailing Federal control of soooo much property:

Lawmakers from Western states said Friday that the time has come for them to take control of federal lands within their borders and suggested the standoff this month between a Nevada rancher and the federal government was a problem waiting to happen.

“What’s happened in Nevada is really just a symptom of a much larger problem,” Utah House Speaker Becky Lockhart, a Republican, told The Salt Lake Tribune.

The lawmakers — more than 50 of them from nine Western states — made their proclamations at the Legislative Summit on the Transfer for Public Lands, in Utah, which was scheduled before this month’s standoff between Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy and the Bureau of Land Management….

(Fox)

ALL THAT ASIDE, the statements I heard from Bundy were hard to hear. BUT, I remembered an older article (2009) by Walter Williams called “Race Talk” in which he explains that over the years what “African-Americans” have been politely called has changed:

  • What to call black people has to be confusing to white people. Having been around for 73 years, I have been through a number of names. Among the polite ones are: colored, Negro, Afro-American, black, and now African-American. Among those names, African-American is probably the most unintelligent.

So even though Cliven Bundy was calling a segment of our body-politic, “Negro,” that wasn’t the issue that worried me. But before drawing a final conclusion on the matter I chose to wait a few days to see what would flesh out.

I am glad I did, because the legacy media pushed a narrative (see three good critiques of this narrative: here, here, and here) different from the larger body of evidence. Gateway Pundit, Alfonzo Rachel, Kira Davis, and Larry Elder helped trigger in my mind what Paul Harvey said was “the rest of the story.” So lets start the journey of what Cliven was saying that is no different in its substance (just not delivery) from what Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams, Larry Elder, C. Mason Weaver, , Star Parker, Carol Swain, Allen West, Deneen Borelli, and others have been saying for a long time. In fact, here are some of the covers I wish to show:

its-ok-leave-plantation-new-underground-railroad

All of the above books and names are people of color saying in a more erudite manner what this po-dunk farmer said. However, many of the above authors call Big-Government what it is to the black community: plantation.

Dr. Sowell made this thinking clear with his debate about the dynamics of welfare with then Pennsylvania Secretary of Welfare, Helen O’Banion (1980). The black family was more intact during the hardest times of our nations history for them, but now 70% of black kids are born to single mothers because the father abandons them because the state will cover his ass. Sowell makes the point that the black family was better during even slavery.

But lets assume the worse fears about Cliven Bundy. Let us posit that he really is racist. What affect does that have on either the issue at hand a) government overreach, or b), your personal life. Government overreach has more possibility of affecting me (all of us), and the guys that can come to your door are carrying AR-15’s. Cliven has no affect on me and will never interfere with my personal well-being.

But I do not think Mr. Bundy is racist like Donald Sterling, if you take all he said IN CONTEXT. Something the left leaning, race-card throwing media does not. So, let us start this journey first with Kira Davis, in all her glory (sorry Kira, looked like a long night with the kids):

Kira makes the point well, that even if Mr. Bundy was a racist… so what. That is a micro issue, the macro issue is whether the law in question that allowed heavily weaponized federal agents to start killing cattle in mass graves is just. This is the point made well by Zo Nation (Alfonzo Rachel) in what I still regard as MachoSauce:

Okay, we have seen that in the BIG picture, even if Cliven Bundy WAS racist, it has no affect on your personal life, and government overreach is much more damaging to the individual. But lets get back to the issue Bundy was making. Larry Elder, in a rather long segment I edited (video included in Larry’s audio), shows that in context, and rather against the New York Times truncating the quote to make Mr. Bundy out as a villain:

You see, in context, we find the narrative to be a bit different than what our handlers want us to see.

Gateway Pundit was stellar in their posting on this matter — NY Times EDITED Cliven Bundy’s Controversial Remarks:

Liberals constant attempts to silence debate and free speech with the caterwauling cries of “racism” were best summed up by this Gateway video posted on George Will.

Liberalism has a kind of Tourette’s syndrome these days. It’s just constantly saying the word racism and racist. There’s an old saying in the law: If you have the law on your side, argue the law; if you have the facts on your side, argue the facts; if you have neither, pound the table. This is pounding the table. There’s a kind of intellectual poverty now. Liberalism hasn’t had a new idea since the 1960′s except Obamacare and the country doesn’t like it. […] So what do you do? You say anyone who criticizes us is a ‘racist’. It’s become a joke…”

Cliven Bundy scares the Left because the Left has failed at scaring Bundy—who doesn’t scare easily and stands up for what is constitutionally protected. The released EDITED video is more pounding of the table to avoid arguing the facts.

Liberal Media Matters and NY Times brought down Cliven Bundy with the release of this EDITED VIDEO HERE on his controversial comments. Below is the context of the FULL video in which he mentions the Government is the master of enslavement. He explains at the beginning and emphasizes again at the end of the video (which was edited out by the Left because they don’t blame government).

Many conservatives like Sean Hannity were quick to jump in and condemn Bundy’s racist statements, rightfully so.  But maybe Hannity missed the discussions on many of the same ideas, admittedly expressed differently than Bundy, shared by great minds such as Walter E. Williams, Ben Carson, Rush Limbaugh, Allen West, and other great conservative minds.

Does the media find Walter E. Williams, Ben Carson, and Allen West ”repugnant” and “beyond despicable” for making similar points as Cliven Bundy? The fact remains this fight is still about GOVERNMENT OVERREACH—not about Bundy.

Here’s a sample of what Walter Williams has said on the subject [I edited the longer video to the relevant remarks]:

And what about Ben Carson who ranted about the massive welfare program known as Obamacare in the video below. Is Ben Carson repugnant, too? No doubt a racist in the eyes of the NY Times.

Read all of Gateways post — well worth it.

So, the conclusion I can come to with all the relevant information is a) Bundy is most likely not racist, but only God can see his heart; b) Mr. Bundy is right about calling a “spade-a-spade,” big government entitlement programs has created what progressive hero said it would do:

How is this a “vote pump”? ~ paying for those to stay unemployed or not worry about their family and continue to vote for the party that pays them:

(CNS News) The top 40 percent of households by before-tax income actually paid 106.2 percent of the nation’s net income taxes in 2010, according to a new study by the Congressional Budget Office.

At the same time, households in the bottom 40 percent took in an average of $18,950 in what the CBO called “government transfers” in 2010.

Taxpayers in the top 40 percent of households were able to pay more than 100 percent of net federal income taxes in 2010 because Americans in the bottom 40 percent actually paid negative income taxes, according to the CBO study entitled, “The Distribution of Household Income and Federal Taxes, 2010.

(CNS News) Buried deep on the website of the U.S. Census Bureau is a number every American citizen, and especially those entrusted with public office, should know. It is 86,429,000.

That is the number of Americans who in 2012 got up every morning and went to work — in the private sector — and did it week after week after week.

[….]

All told, including both the welfare recipients and the non-welfare beneficiaries, there were 151,014,000 who “received benefits from one or more programs” in the fourth quarter of 2011. Subtract the 3,212,000 veterans, who served their country in the most profound way possible, and that leaves 147,802,000 non-veteran benefit takers.

The 147,802,000 non-veteran benefit takers outnumbered the 86,429,000 full-time private sector workers 1.7 to 1.

How much more can the 86,429,000 endure?

Paying for failure, and a new type of slavery… Western style.

Nature of Apologetics, Douglas Groothuis (S.S. Part 1)

This is a three-parter that is quite long, and technical. (It is the first part of a previous set [second, third].) You may also want a dictionary ready, this is a seminary level presentation. If you taken with this presentation[s] — knowledge of how we should better interact with our world and our culture comes through for those In His Service — ΙΗΣ.


Introduction


Part 1

“Men despise religion. They hate it and are afraid it may be true. The cure for this is first to show that religion is not contrary to reason, but worthy of reverence and respect. Next make it attractive, make good men wish it were true, and then show that it is. Worthy of reverence because it really understands human nature. Attractive because it promises true good.” — Blaise Pascal, Pensées, #12/187.

I. The Definition of Apologetics

A. The rational defense of the Christian worldview as objectively true and existentially or subjectively engaging. More generally, to commendation of Christianity in the face of unbelief or doubt.
B. Concerns defining Christian truth-claims that one must believe in order to be a Christian

1. Essentials of orthodoxy: Trinity, Incarnation, biblical authority, justification by faith, etc.
2. Truth-claim: propositions affirming the existence or nonexistence of certain states of affairs

a. Different than a sentence; many sentences affirm of declare the same proposition (More on this in D. Groothuis, Truth Decay, chapter four)
b. Truth-claims are different than questions, emotive utterances, commands, etc.

II. Relation of Apologetics to Theology

A. Apologetics is dependent on theology for its content (essential doctrines), which are defended as true
B. Theology’s ideal is to systematically and coherently articulate what Scripture teaches
C. We need a theology of apologetics’

~ Theological truths (such as human depravity, general revelation, divine transcendence and immanence) guide one’s understanding and application of apologetics

III. Relation of Apologetics to Philosophy

A. Comes under one category of philosophy—philosophy of religion: the rational investigation of religious truth-claims

~ But not all philosophy of religion is Christian apologetics; may be done in service of Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, atheism, etc.

B. Attempts to rationally justify theological statements through philosophical means (theistic arguments, defending the coherence of doctrines, such as the Trinity or Incarnation, etc.)

~ Need not be propaganda or proselytizing, but may be

C. Resurgence of Christians in philosophy in the last two-three decades. See James Kelly Clark, ed., Philosophers Who Believe (InterVarsity Press, 1993); Thomas Morris, God and the Philosophers, ed. (Oxford, 1995). Academic journals: Faith and Philosophy; Philosophia Christi

IV. Relation of Apologetics to Evangelism

A. Apologetics used when necessary to remove obstacles to evangelism: doubts, misunderstandings (Matthew 28:18 — 20)
B. Evangelism declares Christian truth and invites unbelievers to embrace it; apologetics defends Christian truth and clarifies its meaning
C. Apologetics as pre-evangelism (Francis A. Schaeffer)


Part 2

V. Two Types of Apologetics

A. Negative apologetics (two senses)

1. Find intellectual weaknesses in non-Christian world-views—naturalism, pantheism, deism, etc.
2. Respond to anti-Christian intellectual assaults on Christian truth made by Muslims, Freudians, pagan feminists, postmodernists, pantheists, etc.

B. Positive apologetics

1. Give constructive reasons and evidences for defining Christian truth-claims

~ Arguments for objective truth and morality, the existence of God, reliability of the Bible, supremacy of Jesus, etc.

2. Give a cumulative case of various rational arguments for Christian truth

C. Whether something is deemed positive or negative apologetics may depend on the angle at which you look at it
D. A full-orbed Christian apologetic combines positive and negative apologetics

VI. Reasons or Justifications for Christian Apologetics

A. The glory of the one true God (Exodus 20:1 — 7; Matthew 22:37 — 40; 1 Corinthians 10:31; Colossians 3:17)
B. The defense of the Christian faith in order to reach the lost for Christ

1. Give a reason for our hope in the gospel (1 Peter 3:15 — 17)
2. Contend for the once-for-all revealed truth of God (Jude 3)
3. Refute false philosophies (Colossians 2:8 — 9; 2 Corinthians 10:3 — 5; 1 John 4:1 — 4)
4. Build up believers who doubt (Matthew 11:1 — 11; Jude 22 — 23). See Douglas Groothuis “Growing Through Doubt” sermon available though Hope for Today (www.hopefortoday.com)
5. Encourage holiness in knowing and defending God’s truth (Matthews 22:37 — 40)
6. Apologetic example: Paul at Athens (Acts 17:16 — 33)

a. On this see, D. A. Carson, “Athens Revisited,” in D. A. Carson, ed. Telling the Truth: Evangelizing Postmoderns (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2000), 384-398.
b. Douglas Groothuis, “Christianity in the Marketplace” (Acts 17:16 — 34) parts I and II, sermons available from Hope for Today: (www.hopefortoday.org)

7. Apologetic example, exemplar: Jesus (throughout the Gospels)

a. On this see Douglas Groothuis, On Jesus (Wadsworth/Thompson Learning, 2003), chapters one and three, especially
b. Douglas Groothuis, “Jesus and the Life of the Mind” sermon available from: (www.homefortoday.org)

VII. The Spirituality of the Apologist: Truthful Humility

A. Humility (see D. Groothuis, “Apologetics, Truth, and Humility” in syllabus hot link)

1. Humility by creation: total dependence (Genesis 1:1; John 1:1 — 3)

~ See Andrew Murray, Humility: The Heart of Righteousness. Devotional classic.

2. Humility by redemption: you are not your own, you were bought with a price (1 Corinthians 6:20)
3. Deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow Jesus (Luke 9:23)
4. Hold the truth firmly and humbly (1 Timothy 2:24 — 26)
5. We know in part and are in process (1 Corinthians 13:12)
6. Be courageous, but meek; don’t offend unnecessarily (Matthew 5:5; 2 Corinthians 4:7)

B. Have a spirit of committed dialogue (Paul throughout Acts)
C. Glory in the gospel, not apologetic prowess; win people to Christ, not just win arguments (Matthew 28:18 — 20)
D. Passionate, but patient, yearning for the salvation of others (Romans 9:1 — 3; 10:1)
E. Importance of moral/spiritual character in ministry: watch your life and doctrine (1 Timothy 4:16)
F. Reliance on the power of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth (Acts 1:4 — 5; John 16:13)G. Importance of individual and corporate prayer for apologetic integrity (Ephesians 6:10 — 18; Colossians 4:2 — 4)
H. Openness to God’s supernatural work in opening the eyes of unbelievers (Acts 26:17 — 18; Acts 13:1 — 12)

Developing an Apologetic Mind, Douglas Groothuis (S.S. Part 2)

This is a two-parter that is quite long, and technical. (It is the second part of a previous set [first, third].) You may also want a dictionary ready, this is a seminary level presentation. If you taken with this presentation[s] — knowledge of how we should better interact with our world and our culture comes through for those In His Service — ΙΗΣ.


Part 1

I. Six Enemies of Apologetic Engagement

A. If apologetics is biblical and logical, why does it flounder? Why so ignored in the church?
B. “Six enemies of apologetic engagement” (D. Groothuis article on syllabus hot link)

1. Indifference
2. Irrationalism
3. Ignorance
4. Cowardice
5. Arrogance and intellectual vanity
6. Superficial techniques or schlock apologetics

II. Jesus as a Philosopher and Apologist (D. Groothuis, On Jesus, Chapters 1, 3)

A. What is a philosopher?
B. Was Jesus a philosopher?
C. Did Jesus disparage rationality (Michael Martin)?
D. Jesus’ use of argument: our model intellectually

1. Escaping horns of dilemma (Matthew 22:15 — 22)
2. A fortiori arguments (John 7:14 — 24)
3. Jesus’ use of evidence (Matthew 11:1 — 11)
4. Reductio ad absurdum arguments (Matthew 22:41 — 46)
5. Jesus defended truth rationally; lived it out existentially

~ Had a well integrated worldview; didn’t duck rational arguments

III. Worldviews and Christian Faith

A. Three kinds of (or aspects of) faith (W. Corduan, No Doubt; see also J.P. Moreland, Love Your God With All Your Mind)

1. Saving faith: justification—either/or (Ephesians 2:8 — 9)
2. Growing faith: moral sanctification—incremental (Ephesians 2:10)
3. Knowing faith: epistemological sanctification (Colossians 2:2 — 3)

a. Relationship of faith and reason: not antithetical (Isaiah 1:18)
b. Reasoning in Scripture (Romans 12:1 — 2; Matthew 22:37 — 40)
c. Some texts used against reasoning: (1 Corinthians 1 — 2; Colossians 2:8; Isaiah 55:9)
d. Biblical value placed on knowledge outside Scripture (Amos 1 — 2; Daniel; Romans 1 — 2; Acts 17:16 — 34)

B. The nature of genuine Christian faith, subjective believing

1. Assent (fides): belief that “P” (essential gospel truths) is true (Romans 10:9 — 10)
2. Trust (fiducia): belief in “P” as true and trustworthy (Romans 10:11; John 1:12)
3. Disposition, orientation (action-producing): believe “P” is true and trustworthy, therefore act in a faithful way (Ephesians 2:10; James 2:14 — 26)

C. The unity of truth (Corduan) and a well-integrated worldview

1. “All truth is God’s truth”—general and special revelation (Psalm 19:1 — 11)
2. Know “P” through authority (but must identify a qualified authority)
3. Know “P” through argumentation, reasoning, evidence
4. No dichotomy of religious and secular truth: a unified, integrated, worldview
5. Developing a well-integrated worldview

a. What is a worldview and why is it important? (James Sire, chapter 1)
b. What is a Christian worldview? Touchstone proposition (William Halverson, A Concise Introduction to Philosophy)

~ The universe (originally good, now fallen, and awaiting its divine judgment and restoration) is created and sustained by the Triune God, who has revealed himself in nature, humanity, conscience, Scripture, and supremely through the Incarnation.


Part 2

IV. Truth Decay: Understanding the Problem (D. Groothuis Truth Decay, introduction, chapter one)

A. The importance of truth

1. Truth: desired and feared by mortals east of Eden
2. Truth and integrity
3. People of truth; truth in jeopardy
4. Screwtape’s ploy: remove the very category of truth from the mind

B. The seven acids of truth decay

1. The end of the enlightenment vision/project
2. A unified world view is impossible today because of our cosmopolitan, media-saturated environment
3. A unified world-view is impossible today because of the great diversity of religious viewpoints available
4. Postmodernity does not allow for a fixed sense of personal identity
5. Language is contingent on human beings and cannot communicate objective truth
6. Written texts have no objective, determinative meaning or truth value (deconstruction)
7. “Truth” is a function of power relationships, not an objective reality

V. The Eighth Acid of Truth Decay: Television (See D. Groothuis, Truth Decay, appendix)

A. Understanding the nature of television and how it contributes to truth decay “The medium is the message” (Marshall McLuhan, Understanding Media)

1. Moving image trumps or humiliates the written and spoken word (Exodus 20:1 — 4; John 1:1)

a. Images are limited in their power to communicate truth: second commandment (Exodus 20). Jesus’ appearance is never described in the Gospels
b. Power of deception through image manipulation: my TV interview about channeling. Malcolm Muggerridge: “The camera always lies.” See his Christ and the Media
c. Prefabricated presentations: shrink events into sound bites and memorable images that may be false or misleading
d. Cannot watch the Bible on video. You must learn to master the written texts. Church librarian in Denver laments that parents check out “Christian videos” instead of books for children

2. Discontinuity, fragmentation: “a peek-a-boo world” (Neil Postman) (Luke 1:1 — 4)

a. No continuity, coherence, development of ideas: “And now this…”
b. Leads to intellectual impatience, recklessness, distraction
c. ADD/ADHD: a national problem. Medical warnings about TV and infants. Pediatrics, Vol. 113 No. 4 (April 2004)

~ Conclusions: Early television exposure is associated with attentional problem at age 7. Efforts to limit television viewing in early childhood may be warranted…”

d. Biblically, the primacy of a coherent, orderly view of reality (Luke 1:1 — 4)

3. Hypervelocities: video equivalent of caffeine (Psalm 46:10)—jump cuts, scene changes, special effects

a. Out of sync with God-given natures: pathology of velocity, plague of rapidity
b. Stimulation, agitation—not edification instruction (usually). Ken Burns programs are somewhat different, though
c. Decrease in attention spans: sermons, classes, conversations; but this may be challenged—through good preaching
d. Biblical importance of pacing, stillness. “Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10)

4. Entertainment orientation—amusement dominates all other values (2 Timothy 3:4)

a. The demand of all areas of life: religion, politics, news, education; amuse means “no thought.” “Laugh track is always running” (Jean Baudrillard, America)
b. Amusement is not appropriate for many things; loss of gravity, sobriety, rectitude; orienting our subjective response to the objective nature of what we experience
c. Biblically: don’t be a lover of pleasure rather than a lover of God (2 Timothy 3:4). Get serious.

B. Conclusion (more on this in “Christian Ethics and Modern Culture” class)

1. Engage in television fasting
2. Decrease drastically television watching
3. Replace with thoughtful reading

Resources for growth and discernment

1. Douglas Groothuis, Truth Decay (InterVarsity, 2000). The appendix addresses the nature and effects television in the context of postmodernism.
2. Os Guinness, Fit Bodies, Fat Minds (Baker Books, 1994). Excellent Christian critique of anti-intellectualism in the church, which addresses television and other truth-decaying agents.
3. Arthur Hunt, III, The Vanishing Word: The Veneration of Imagery in the Postmodern World (Crossway, 2003). Christian perspective on a pervasive but often ignored problem.
4. Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death (Penguin, 1985). The best secular critique of the nature and effects of television; it is more insightful than most Christian books.
5. Douglas and Rebecca Merrill Groothuis web page: www.ivpress.com/groothuis/doug

Worldviews, Truth & Knowledge, Douglas Groothuis (S.S. Part 3)

This is a two-parter that is quite long, and technical. (It is the third part of a previous set [first, second].) You may also want a dictionary ready, this is a seminary level presentation. If you taken with this presentation[s] — knowledge of how we should better interact with our world and our culture comes through for those In His Service — ΙΗΣ.


PART 1

I.What is an Argument (Anthony Weston, Rulebook for Arguments)?

A. Philosophical argument: means of rational persuasion
B. Premises
C. Logical form
D. Conclusion
E. Validity and soundness
F. Clear language, consistent terms
G. Goal of good arguments: knowledge: justified, true belief

II. From Modernism to Postmodernism (Truth Decay, chapter two). See also Harold Netland, Encountering Religious Pluralism (InterVarsity, 2001), chapter two.

A. Distinguishing social conditions (-itys) from philosophies (-isms)
B. The premodern era (premodernity) – premodernist worldview
C. The modern era (modernity) – modernist worldview
D. The postmodern (postmodernity) era – postmodernist worldview
E. Postmodernism as a philosophy

1. No objective, universal, absolute truth; embrace of relative, pragmatic truths
2. Rejection of metanarratives; embrace of micro/mini-narratives
3. Rejection of essences, foundations; embrace of shifting surfaces
4. Language creates reality, does not reflect objective facts; self-enclosed, non referential, “prison-house of language”
5. Truth as “the new obscenity” (Os Guinness, The Journey)

F. Postmodernity as a social condition

1. The continuity with modernity regarding broad social forces
2. Breakdown of religious consensus; emergence of greater pluralism
3. The saturation of the self through communication technologies
4. Loss of cultural authority; Christianity loses it public face and voice
5. Surface over depth; image all the way down; factoids all the way down; etc.

III. The Christian View of (A) Truth and (B) What is True

A. Clarify the concept of truth, before getting to content of truth (Francis Schaeffer, The God Who is There)
B. General concept and Christian: correspondence view of truth (more in Truth Decay, chapter four)
C. Biblical words for truth

1.Hebrew
2.Greek

D. Biblical Concept of truth: radical monotheism (Deuteronomy 6:4)

1. Revealed—not constructed, created by us (Hebrews 4:12)

a. Supernatural and personal source of knowledge
b. Not all is constructed; some is revealed, received, discovered
c. Language as God’s vehicle to convey truth

~ God as Logos (John 1:1 — 3), human in the image of God (Genesis 1:26)

2. Objective—not only merely subjective (Romans 3:4)

a. Truth above cultures; truth as judging all cultures equally
b. Some things can be known as they are in themselves
c. Not based on preference only—comfortable, uncomfortable
d. We are entitled to our own opinions, not our own truths

3. Absolute—not relative (John 14:1 — 6)

a. Invariant, noncontingent, nonnegotiable
b. No exceptions, exemptions, exclusions

4. Universal—not situational (Matthew 28:18 — 20; Acts 4:12)

~ Cross-cultural realities: reconciliation with God and others

5. Eternal—not trendy or trivial (Isaiah 40:8; Malachi 3:6)

~ Not ephemeral, fragile, conventional

6. Antithetical—not synthetic (Matthew 12:30)

a. Law of identity
b. Noncontradiction
c. Law of excluded middle
d. Law of bivalence
e. Not a matter of taste but of truth

7. Systematic, not fragmentary, ad hoc, arbitrary, piecemeal

~ All Scripture inspired; God cannot lie (2 Timothy 3:16 — 17; Hebrews 6:18)

8. Truth is not completely knowable by fallen mortals (Deuteronomy 29:29; 1 Corinthians 13:9 — 12)


Part 2

IV. Relativism: Roots and Refutations (Corduan, chapter two)

A. Four laws of logic/thought/communication

1. Law of identity: “A” is identical to “A”
2. Law of contradiction (sometimes called the law of noncontradiction): “A” is not identical to “non-A”
3. Law of excluded middle: Not both “A” and “non-A”; not third option
4. Law of bivalence: any unambiguous proposition “A” is either true or false; not neither true nor false, not both true and false
5. Logic and God (see also, Geisler and Brooks, Come Let us Reason: An Introduction to Logical Thinking, chapter one)

a. God is logical; does not break the rules (Isaiah 1:18: John 1:1
b. This is no limit on God, but a virtue. God cannot deny or contradict himself or tell a lie.
c. Omnipotence does not and can not entail actualizing logical contradictions

B. The challenge of relativism

1. Denies law of contradiction for statements
2. Or: makes truth relative to individuals or cultures
3. Conceptual relativism: every concept is relative
4. Moral relativism: only moral concepts are relative

a. Normative relativism
b. Individualist relativism

C. Six roots of relativism

1. The information explosion makes objective, absolute, universal knowledge impossible
2. The claim to objective, absolute, universal knowledge leads to totalitarianism and intolerance
3. The sincerity of religious believers means they cannot be wrong
4. “Buddhist logic” allows for contradictions to be true; only “Western logic” disallows this
5. Having individual rights means I can determine my own truth
6. Humility requires relativism; otherwise dogmatism

~ Tolerance requires relativism

D. Moreland against relativism

1. Descriptive relativism a weak thesis concerning principles
2. Against normative relativism

a. What is the morally relevant culture? Indeterminacy problem
b. May belong to more than one culture. Indeterminacy problem
c. Reformer’s dilemma; reductio ad absurdum
d. Some acts are clearly wrong whatever society you are in: we have knowledge of particular moral truths
e. One society could not blame another morally, given this theory; reductio ad absurdum

V. The Christian World View—Objectively: The Faith (Sire, chapter two; Groothuis, On Jesus, chapters 4 — 7)

A. World-view: assumptions about the basic make up of the world (James Sire, Universe, 16). See also David Nagle, Worldview: The History of Concept (Eerdmans, 2002)
B. Importance of world views, meta-narratives—for individuals and cultures
C. The Christian world view (J. Sire, chapter two)

1. God is infinite and personal (triune), transcendent and immanent, omniscient, sovereign and good.

~ Jesus’ worldview…

2. God created the cosmos ex nihilo with a uniformity of cause and effect in an open system.

~ Jesus’ worldview…

3. Human beings are created in the image of God [Genesis 1:27] and thus possess personality, self-transcendence, intelligence, morality, gregariousness and creativity.

~ Jesus’ worldview…

4. Human beings can know both the world around them and God himself because God has built into them the capacity to do so and because he takes an active role in communicating with them.

~ Jesus’ worldview…

5. Human beings were created good, but through the Fall the image of God became defaced, though not so ruined as not to be capable of restoration; through the work of Christ, God redeemed humanity and began the process of restoring people to goodness, though any given person may chose to reject that redemption.

~ Jesus’ worldview…

6. For each person death is either the gate to life with God and his people or the gate to eternal separation [hell] from the only thing that will ultimately fulfill human aspirations.

~ Jesus’ worldview…

7. Ethics is transcendent and is based on the character of God as good (holy and loving).

~ Jesus’ worldview…

8. History is linear, a meaningful sequence of events leading to the fulfillment of God’s purposes in history.

~Jesus’ worldview…

9. Touchstone proposition: “The universe (originally good, now fallen and awaiting its divine restoration) is created by the Triune God, who has revealed himself in nature, conscience, Scripture, and through the Incarnation.” (D. Groothuis revision of Ronald Nash, Faith and Reason)


Appendix

I. Components of Knowledge (Corduan, chapter 3)

A. Need for an epistemology
B. Self evidence and epistemology

1. Analytic, necessary truths
2. Basic beliefs, religious experience
3. J.P. Moreland on religious experience (Scaling, 231 — 240)

a. Causal argument: explaining a changed life
b. Direct perception argument: sensory perception and numinous experience: seven common features

4. Immediate sensory awareness
5. Self-evidence is a necessary but not sufficient test for the truth of a world view; need more than self-evidence and religious experience

C. Rationality and epistemology

1. Logical deduction
2. Rationalism: Plato, Anselm, Descartes, Gordon Clark
3. The ontological argument: a priori argument extraordinaire. See Stephen Davis’s chapter in God, Reason, and Theistic Proofs (Eerdmans, 1997).
4. Rational deduction is a necessary, but not sufficient test for a true world view; need more than deduction

D. Sensory information and epistemology

1. Empiricism: open and closed
2. Teleological argument, naïve version (J.P. Moreland’s in Scaling is far better)
3. Sensory information is a necessary, but not sufficient test for the truth of a world view: need more than sensory information

E. Workability and epistemology

1. Pragmatism: it’s true if it works
2. Pragmatism and religious truth: conflicts
3. Evaluation of pragmatism; cannot be the meaning or definition of truth. Is one element of testing truth claims.
4. Workability a necessary, but not a sufficient test for the truth of a world view: working doesn’t make a belief true

F. A combination of criteria are needed to test the truth of a worldview

Within Living Memory The U.S. Has Become An Entitlements Machine

Over the past 50 years, the purpose of the American government has radically transformed. Whereas its main goal in domestic matters used to be to protect liberty, it is now an entitlements machine, transferring over $2 trillion per year from some people’s pockets to others. Nicholas Eberstadt of the American Enterprise Institute explains how the explosions in social security, medicare, medicaid, and other welfare programs are changing the American character for the worse–from one that is focused on individual responsibility and giving, to one that is focused on grabbing as much of the pie as possible.

Marriage plays a big role in this equation, via American Thinker:

…Just this week, CNS news published an alarming fact: 86 million full-time, private-sector workers sustain 148 million benefit-takers.  Specifically, “The 147,802,000 non-veteran benefit takers outnumbered the 86,429,000 full-time private sector workers 1.7 to 1.”

Today, according to the U.S. Census Bureau (see note below), poor children living in single-parent households constitute almost two thirds of all poor children (65 percent).  That figure stands in stark contrast to the time before liberal social welfare policies went into effect in 1960, when only 25 percent of all poor children lived in single-parent households….

Three things one can do to stay out of poverty: 1) finish high school, 2) Get Married ([2.a] and stay married), and 3), go to church. These three factors are anti-poverty when practiced in unison.

Elitist Liberals, Sound Analogies, and Tolerance Over a Cup-O-Joe

Do as I say, not as I do… dammit.

Zo Peacefuly attends his California Assemblyman’s Meet & Greet, only to get harassed by a woman “attorney” attendee, who actually sics the cops on him!

Meanwhile, Democrat Al Muratsuchi shows his true hypocritical self. Just another example of how liberals like Al are not tolerant of things, but want to make it a law for others to be tolerant of the things they wouldn’t tolerate. Hear more in this ZoNation.

Experience the creative energy and conservative insight that Zo delivers in every show. Click here to buy the ZoNation Complete Series Collection: http://bit.ly/ZoNationCompleteSeries

What a N.Y. Liberal Can Say on Glenn Beck & Not On CNN/MSNBC

From The Blaze:

….“I’m sitting with you [Glenn Beck] because I wasn’t invited by CNN or MSNBC, because something about what I’m saying today, they don’t want said,” Brighton remarked. “Which is symptomatic [of] the problem.”

The author has recently published a book titled Sharia-ism Is Here: The Battle to Control Women and Everyone Else. She said her book separates Islam from the controlling and abusive politics on top of it.

[….]

It is estimated, she said, that hundreds of thousands have suffered female genital mutilation and forced marriages in the United States.

“Girls … are being sent over to Pakistan, over to Sudan, marrying some strange relative and bringing that relative back,” Brighton remarked. “And now she’s under the thumb of a Sharia-ist. She doesn’t even experience Islam, the religion! She experiences control.”

Brighton said the biggest difference between Islam and Sharia-ism is the latter is a “political movement to control,” not unlike communism or fascism, and added that the only reason the ideology has been able to survive in the United States this long is because it has has the “cover of religion,” and an enormous number of “petrodollars.”

…read more…

Oregon Residents Getting Electricity from Aborted Babies

The video above is of a worker at a waste facility plant — via HotAir — saying that the city officials had to know that this was going on for years.

Bud Waterman, a former temp worker at Covanta Marion, Inc., said two to three times a week, 53-foot tractor trailers carrying biohazards dropped off loads at the facility in Brooks.

On more than one occasion, Waterman said the contents of the truck spilled out of their containers.

“It would make you sick, especially if you had to clean it up or have to pull a box off the trailer,” said Waterman. …

“They knew it, they had to. I don’t see how they could not know it,” said Waterman.

I touched on this in a previous post, I explained how this is an environmentalists dream come true. However, I wonder if the officials are only “horrified” because they got caught? Or if they really didn’t know. At any rate, the slippery slope really is just what pro-lifers say it is.

Here is the latest via Breitbart:

Marion County, Oregon commissioners approved an order Thursday to stop an incinerator from using aborted babies to generate power. The order states that the incinerator must stop accepting medical waste until procedures are in place to ensure aborted babies are not among the substances burned to produce electricity.

As Breitbart News’ Warner Todd Huston reported earlier on Thursday, authorities in Victoria, British Columbia revealed that the remains of aborted babies are disposed of in the United States and sent to a facility that burns waste to provide electric power for Oregon residents.

According to the Associated Press, pro-life Marion County commissioners Sam Brentano and Janet Carlson said they were horrified to learn that the Marion County Resource Recovery Facility in Brooks might be burning aborted babies to generate power.

“We’re going to get [to] the bottom of it,” Carlson said. “I want to know who knew, when they knew, how long they had known this was going on.”

Brentano observed nevertheless that the county’s ordinance that sets limits on what can be accepted at the waste-to-energy plant allows for all human tissue.

“No rule or law has been broken, but there’s an ethical standard that’s been broken,” he said.

…read more…

The following picture seems — to me at least — to be the most ironic thing now. It is meant to protect children from electricity, while burning them for it:

The next time you click on a light switch you may find yourself with a pit in your stomach once learning how the electricity was generated for your Oregon home or business. Remains of aborted babies, amputated limbs and cancerous human tissue are used in a waste-to-power facility that provides electricity for the people of Oregon, according to LifeSiteNews on April 23.

The British Columbia Health Ministry admits that these are the types of human waste transported from their medical facilities to a power producing plant in the U.S., one that supplies power to the state of Oregon. The human tissue is incinerated and turned into energy while using the utmost care to follow all the “biochemical waste” health and safety protocols.

The Gateway Pundit reports today that this is a shocking reveal, using aborted babies to burn as fuel to generate electricity in this country. This medical waste has to go somewhere.

Sick.