Friday, April 30, 2010

Day 65

Hesitation Not Acceptable

So Ahab summoned all the Israelites and gathered the prophets at Mount Carmel. Then Elijah approached all the people and said, "How long will you hesitate between two opinions? If Yahweh is God, follow Him. But if Baal, follow him." But the people didn't answer him a word.
1Kings 18:20-21 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

Why would one hesitate to follow The One True God?

I must admit... there is no good answer.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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Here is the official picture of the new Patriot Guard Harley to be used when the Phelps nuts show up at our fallen warriors funerals to torment their families.

Unfortunately... only state captains (and their assistants) are allowed to ride this bike... would you care to wager that state captains are now going to have a whole lot more assistants?

xtnyoda, shalomed

N/T to Tiger

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Here is a little refresher course in the purpose and importance of the second amendment.
Firearms Refresher Course.

"A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government."
(George Washington)

1. "Those who hammer their guns into plows will
plow for those who do not."
~Thomas Jefferson

2. "Those who trade liberty for security have
~John Adams

3. Free men do not ask permission to bear arms.

4. An armed man is a citizen.
An unarmed man is a subject.

5. Only a government that is afraid of its citizens tries to control them.

6. Gun control is not about guns; it's about control.

7. You only have the rights you are willing to fight for.

8. Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.

9. You don't shoot to kill; you shoot to stay alive.

10. Assault is a behavior, not a device.

11. 64,999,987 firearms owners killed no one yesterday.

12. The United States Constitution (c) 1791. All Rights Reserved.

13. The Second Amendment is in place in case the politicians ignore the others.

14. What part of 'shall not be infringed' do you NOT understand?

15. Guns have only two enemies; rust and politicians..

16. When you remove the people's right to bear arms, you create slaves.

17. The American Revolution would never have happened with gun control.

Thanks Col. Ceburn!

xtnyoda, shalomed

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The Chaplain's Corner

Guest blogger, Chaplain Paul, is one of the most effective chaplains in America today. He is an emergency responder to every situation.

Hey, this is the Chaplain again.

This year the National Day of Prayer will be held on Thursday May 6, 2010. The N D P tradition predates the founding of the United States of America, evidenced by the Continental Congress’ proclamation in 1775 setting aside a day of prayer. In 1952, Congress established an annual day of prayer and, in 1988, that law was amended, designating the National Day of Prayer as the first Thursday in May.

Because of the Christian faith of our founding fathers, public prayer and national days of prayer have a long-standing and significant history in American tradition. The Supreme Court affirmed the right of state legislatures to open their sessions with prayer in Marsh vs. Chambers (1983).

The National Day of Prayer is a vital part of our heritage. Since the first call to prayer in 1775, when the Continental Congress asked the colonies to pray for wisdom in forming a nation, the call to prayer has continued through our history, including President Lincoln’s proclamation of a day of “humiliation, fasting, and prayer” in 1863. In 1952, a joint resolution by Congress, signed by President Truman, declared an annual, national day of prayer. In 1988, the law was amended and signed by President Reagan, permanently setting the day as the first Thursday of every May. Each year, the president signs a proclamation, encouraging all Americans to pray on this day. Last year, all 50 state governors plus the governors of several U.S. territories signed similar proclamations.

If there has ever been a time that our nation, state and city needed prayer that time is now. From the halls of Congress in Washington DC to the City Hall of my home town, Russellville AR, we are a people in desperate need of God. I understand that not everyone believes that; many think that we can take care of our business without calling on God. That kind of thinking has taken us a long ways from the ideals that this great nation was founded on. Recently some of our city alderman in Russellville publicly announced that the Bible and Christian principles were out of place in City Council meetings. God help us.

Here in Russellville the area Ministerial Association is calling for all Christians to set aside May 6th. as a day of prayer and fasting. There will be a city wide prayer meeting at the Rsvl. 1st United Methodist Church at 12 noon on this day. All citizens are encouraged to join us in setting aside an hour of prayer and fasting. Your town should be having some kind of prayer service on that day. Find out where, and attend!

I think we all know that our nation may be facing some difficult times ahead. Please join us as we seek God for our nation, state and city. 'In God we trust" is still on our currency. 2nd Chronicles 7:14 is still true.
"IF my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
God’s word is true, but there is a big IF at the beginning of this passage. If we will do our part God has promised to do His part. He will continue to bless America; but it really is up to us!


Now... this lady has a message... and she knows how to share it!

xtnyoda, shalomed


Here's a little heart warming news report from FOX revealing the lies and deception from congress and the white house over the actual costs of the new "health care scam"...

enjoy the report.

Incidentally... if it would have been Bush that would have done this kind of deception... can you imagine the screaming out of the MSM?

xtnyoda, shalomed

N/T On The Mark

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Friday, April 30th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

Have you had a kindness shown?
Pass it on;
’Twas not given for thee alone;
Pass it on;
Let it travel down the years;
Let it wipe another’s tears,
’Till in heaven the deed appears;
-Pass it on.

(Henry Burton, 1840–1930)

God has been so good to us! Let us not be selfish with the blessings He has bestowed on us. The 117th Psalm, only two verses long, gives us these encouraging words:
“O praise the LORD, all ye nations: praise him, all ye people.
For his merciful kindness is great toward us: and the truth of the LORD endureth for ever. Praise ye the LORD.”

Don’t be a sponge and let kindness stop at your door only. Be a well of kindness to others.

"God, let me reflect the love from You.

Bro. Bill

God Loves You!


Thursday, April 29, 2010

Day 64

Shalom... The Place of Faith

So Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and called it Yahweh Shalom.
Judges 6:24 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

Backing up for today to Yahweh Shalom...

What king Ahab failed to realize... and Israel in their threatened situation with the forces of Baal... to know the Shalom of Yahweh is not to live in the absence of threat and challenge... quite the contrary.

The Shalom of Yahweh is learned and lived in the most dire of circumstance. Shalom keeps us not from trial and affliction... but rather goes with us through trial and affliction.

It is in the midst of great challenge that we experience Yahweh Shalom.

Any other word is faith abating.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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Thursday, April 29th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

"The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted our spoons."
(Ralph Waldo Emerson, 1803–1882)

Most of the time if we have to wax eloquent in sharing all our virtues, we may be covering or "waxing" a flaw in our nature.

The apostle Paul, in writing 1 Corinthians 8:1-3, told us this, “Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth. And if any man think that he knoweth anything, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know. But if any man love God, the same is known of him.” We will truly be known by our deeds and not by our words.

"God, let my actions edify You.

Bro. Bill
God Loves You!


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Now... the White House wants to join hands with the Church... in order for the Church... to propagate the Global Warming agenda to her members and communities.

The Weekly Standard
The White House wants churches to advance its climate change agenda.

If the Obama administration has its way, the gospel of climate change will be coming to a pulpit near you. That at least seems to be the dream of the President’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships—a 25-member group of leaders from across the religious spectrum that is part of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

Last month, the council spent a day at the White House briefing senior administration officials on its “final report of recommendations” for improving collaboration between the government and religious organizations. The 164-page document, entitled “A New Era of Partnerships,” takes up the “priority areas” identified by President Obama—Economic Recovery and Domestic Poverty, Fatherhood and Healthy Families, Environment and Climate Change, Global Poverty and Development, and Interreligious Cooperation.

Poverty, families, interreligious co-operation: All pretty standard. But what does an office created to help better provide social services to the needy have to do with climate change?

Apparently, the president’s council envisions the “partnership” between government and religious institutions as a means of spreading the administration’s environmental warnings, rather than just a way to help churches feed the hungry and clothe the poor. Faith-based organizations, the report notes, can take “a prominent leadership role in influencing policy, education, and action in those areas.”

How exactly can the government enlist congregations in the climate-change fight? Step 1: Set up an office at the Environmental Protection Agency “to actualize the potential of faith-based and community groups and their networks across the country toward greening and retrofitting buildings”:
[A]n Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships at the EPA could .  .  . activate faith- and community-based networks to promote energy efficiency, environmental responsibility, and green jobs. With minimal personnel costs to the government, massive partnerships could be scaled up through engaging religious and community leaders and organizations.

The council hopes the new EPA faith office will also help churches and other nonprofits improve “access to financing,” including “establishing revolving loan programs or working with utility companies to help finance greening building projects.” The ultimate aim of all this government-supported retrofitting is clear: “Regional staff would work to engage local faith-and community-based groups to help meet Obama administration targets for greening buildings and promoting environmental quality.” [Emphasis added.]

The report adds: “We believe that faith- and community-based groups, as well as the general American public, could be better mobilized toward environmental goals with a well-publicized and centralized educational campaign” (to be hosted and promoted through a government website) that, among other things, “asks faith-based and neighborhood organizations to collaborate in developing these resources which should emphasize that environmental and climate change concerns are often closely connected to issues of justice and equity.”.....

Churches pushing the Global Warming agenda... gaining funding from the government to do so... and we all should know that when the government drops a penny in the coffers it requires total submission... to government regulations and policies.

This friends... is the Pied Piper playing the Church like a bunch of sheep with the wolf in the woods... near-by... speaking of "justice and equity."

Blow the Trumpet... Sound the Alarm.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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I bought myself a new scooter.

I wanted something that was easy on gas and could zip me to the store and about town. This seems to meet my EVERY need.

I love it!

Remember: Senior Citizens Are Valuable!

We are more valuable than any of the younger generations. We have silver in our hair. We have gold in our teeth. We have stones in our kidneys. We have lead in our feet and, we are loaded with natural gas!

xtnyoda, shalomed

H/T Cliff


Wednesday, April 28th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“America’s future will be determined by the home and the school. The child becomes largely what he is taught; hence we must watch what we teach and how we live.”
(Jane Addams, 1860–1935)

Much of what our forerunners have told us has come to pass and not always in a positive realm. We must turn this country around by raising a new generation that seeks God and His righteousness. If we don’t, we could live to see America fallen and destroyed.

For advice on training this generation for the future, we need to study the words of the writer of Proverbs:
“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”
(Proverbs 22:6)

"God, Let us learn from our past and resolve to re-shape our future in Your will.

Bro. Bill

God Loves You!


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Day 63
Yahweh's Name

Denied in Judgment

So Ahab summoned all the Israelites and gathered the prophets at Mount Carmel. Then Elijah approached all the people and said, "How long will you hesitate between two opinions? If Yahweh is God, follow Him. But if Baal, follow him." But the people didn't answer him a word.
1Kings 18:20-21 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

Why did Israel not answer a word?

They were is such a wretched spiritual condition... they could not say The Name. This is a mark of Divine Judgment... to not know... to not be able to even speak The Name... as Jeremiah reveals...

"Therefore, hear the word of the Lord, all you Judeans who live in the land of Egypt: 'I have sworn by My great name, says the Lord, that My name will never again be invoked by anyone of Judah in all the land of Egypt, saying, As the Lord God lives'..."
Jeremiah 44:26 (HCSB)

Now... you see... The Name has been hidden from us for over a thousand years.

It has been a dark millennium.

Be not afraid child of God... say The Name... Yahweh.

xtnyoda, shalomed

H/T The Desert Rat of Morgan

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Tuesday, April 27th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“If God is going to bless me, he must condemn and blast out of my being what he cannot bless.”
(Oswald Chambers, 1874–1917)

To become the usable vessel God wants me to be, I have to let Him full access to remove and empty those parts and places that are not expedient to bless Him. The writer of Jeremiah 18:4-6 gives us some thoughts of this process:
“And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying, O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter.”

"God, Your pruning and correction bring me benefit.

Bro. Bill

God loves you!


Monday, April 26, 2010

"Mary... Mary...

Quite contrary...

How does your garden grow?"

"Why... by adding as much CO2 to the atmosphere as I possibly can...

Don't you know?!"

xtnyoda, shalomed


Day 62

Shalom... The Place of Courage

So Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and called it Yahweh Shalom.
Judges 6:24 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

What is the basis of true spiritual courage? It is here... at this altar of Yahweh Shalom. It was at this heart altar that the 3 Hebrew children rested as they responded to the threats of the evil King...
"If the God we serve exists, then He can rescue us from the furnace of blazing fire, and He can rescue us from the power of you, the king. But even if He does not rescue us, we want you as king to know that we will not serve your gods or worship the gold statue you set up..."
Daniel 3:17-18 (HCSB)

They knew Yahweh Shalom.

Can you relate?

xtnyoda, shalomed

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Non-elected people put into positions of financial power by elected officials....

to implement financial and industry policies that directly affect their business ventures...

Pajamas Media report
More Global Warming Profiteering by Obama Energy Official

Ex-Gore associate and current Obama energy official Cathy Zoi is exploiting global warming for her own mega-gain.

Surprising documents made available to this author reveal that Assistant Secretary of Energy Cathy Zoi has a huge financial stake in companies likely to profit from the Obama administration’s “green” policies.

Zoi, who left her position as CEO of the Alliance for Climate Protection — founded by Al Gore — to serve as assistant secretary for energy efficiency and renewable energy, now manages billions in “green jobs” funding. But the disclosure documents show that Zoi not only is in a position to affect the fortunes of her previous employer, ex-Vice President Al Gore, but that she herself has large holdings in two firms that could directly profit from policies proposed by the Department of Energy.

Among Zoi’s holdings are shares in Serious Materials, Inc., the previously sleepy, now bustling, friend of the Obama White House whose public policy operation is headed by her husband. Between them, Zoi and her husband hold 120,000 shares in Serious Materials, as well as stock options. Reporter John Stossel has already explored what he sees as the “crony capitalism” implied by Zoi being so able to influence the fortunes of a company to which she is so closely associated....
But.... don't worry friends... this is our more open and accountable government that the MSM is guarding... I mean protecting... I mean watching... so carefully for us.

Perhaps the MSM is on the take as well?

xtnyoda, shalomed

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Monday, April 26th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“Adam was the only man who, when he said a good thing, knew that nobody had said it before him.”
(Mark Twain, 1835–1910)

My words fail and come short of the intention many times; however, the words of God stand and bring healing to generation after generation. The writer of Hebrews 13:8 reminds us,
“Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and for ever.”

"God,Your words are a treasure to every generation.

Bro. Bill

God is love!


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sunday, April 25th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“Joys divided are increased.”
(Josiah Gilbert Holland, 1819–1881)

When we share the joy God has planted in our hearts, our joy is not diminished but enlarged, not only in our hearts but also within he hearts of the ones with whom we share it.
"For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands."
(Proverbs 22:6)

"God, let the joy of our heart overflow to others.

Bro. Bill

God is love!


Saturday, April 24, 2010

On April 19, 1971... chuck aka xtnyoda was on a visual reconnaissance mission... flying as a door gunner... on a Marine helicopter... over the Republic of South Vietnam.

After first flying over the first of 3 North Vietnamese Army base camps at the altitude of 1,500 feet... at the request of the infantry lieutenant on board for a closer look... to gather visual information for a Marine unit that was going to conduct a strike that night... we then descended to an altitude of only 400 feet for a second pass-over... suddenly our lone helicopter came under intense automatic weapons fire.

Long story short... we were shot down... and by the grace of God and an excellent co-pilot... we managed a controlled "landing" nearby.

Because of our desperate situation... I was not able to make the afternoon flight I had been scheduled for. My best friend, George Vangundy, took my place.

Shortly after his flight took off the helicopter experienced catastrophic mechanical failure... George died instantly.

Thirty-nine years later to the day, April 19, 2010, our first born son and I traveled some 650 miles to the resting place of my friend... to place a simple rose of remembrance... over his grave... and say a prayer in memory.

We were able to find the location of the grave after having been united over the internet with one of George's sisters, Judy, several years ago. Judy and her husband, Larry, graciously met us at the grave site in the north-western corn fields of Indiana.

I had always felt... and often said that George had died in in my place. I had shared the same with Judy in our e-mail correspondence... it was a heavy weight on my heart... for 39 years.

We had a blessed time together in that small, rural, cemetery... words cannot describe how grateful our son and I felt that Judy and Larry would make what was for them a 4 hour journey to... meet us there... at the grave of her brother.

The picture above is xtnyoda... and Judy.

I shared with her again my deepest feelings of... grief at the loss of life... and the emotions that go with feeling that somehow... it should have been me.

Judy was gracious beyond description... and delighted to meet us. It was one of the greatest and rewarding moments of my life... to get to look into her accepting eyes and gentle unassuming smile.

As we approached each other for the initial greeting... after John and I got out of our car... she quietly asked, "May I hug you?"

I don't know what to say about the embrace... except to say... for a fleeting moment... it seemed I could actually feel the heart-beat of my friend... in her heart.

After our sharing and grateful meeting... it was time to say good-by. Judy asked, "How long was your journey?" I responded, "It only took about 11 hours driving."

Her husband, Larry, gently responded, "No Chuck... it's been a 39 year journey." His wisdom struck home.

Then... a couple of days later I received an e-mail from Judy that I wish to share part of with you. This paragraph is one of the greatest statements of personal redemption I have ever received... save the cross of Christ.

"You have said several times that George died in your place. I think this thought has caused you a lot of pain over the years. I wanted to tell you that I don't think George died in your place. I think George died in his own place, and one day, you will die in your own place.

I don't think one can choose to decide who dies in who's place. The Lord is the only one who decides.... and then He calls us to Him when He is ready for us. I understand how you might feel about what happened, but please don't continue to think about it as you do. George died in his place and you will die in your place when the time comes.

Nothing more."

That statement friends... is priceless.

Thank you Judy.

xtnyoda, shalomed

Below I am going to post a picture that I happened upon of the helicopter that I was shot down in. I was shocked to find it... it was on a web site that had photos from Vietnam... and the person that took the picture must have been on the recovery effort after we were evacuated. You might be able to read his writing at the bottom of the picture that says, "Shot Down!"

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Day 61

Shalom... The Abiding Place

So Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and called it Yahweh Shalom.
Judges 6:24 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

Today we have a simple yet life-defining question... "What is the challenge you face... that without the help of Yahweh... you would surly fail/be consumed?"

It is only in that defined place that you can know Yahweh Shalom.

It is only in that place that you are living for the Glory of His name.

Yahweh always leads us... one and all... to the place of overwhelming odds... that He may enable/deliver/victor His children... and rightfully... receive our gracious praise. This is what the Apostle referred to as our Spiritual Worship... or as the KJV says... our... Reasonable Service.

"Therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, I urge you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God; this is your spiritual worship."
Romans 12:1 (HCSB)

Only here know we Yahweh Shalom... only here do our lives reflect The Glory of His Name.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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Islamic Militantism is assaulting the United States Of America... on our own soil... and the very institutions that have supposedly led the charge for freedom (of speech) to defame all we hold sacred... are the first to cave to the assaults of the Militants.

Daily Caller report
Expert says Comedy Central censorship signals ’slow-motion surrender’ in the West

Comedy Central censored any mention of the word “Muhammad” in a recent “South Park” episode following threats from a radical Islam group, and one terrorism policy expert says the network’s decision is part of a trend of America surrendering its freedom of speech in the face of intimidation.

Clifford May, who presides over the Foundation for Defense of Democracies terrorism policy institute, said “it would be nice” to see artists and film directors “really stand up for freedom” and that “it’s really disappointing when they don’t.”

“What we are seeing, if this continues, is a slow-motion surrender in the West, and that’s a pretty terrible thing,” said May, when asked to comment on the censoring of words in the show. “South Park” in the past has not shied away from depicting religious leaders engaged in outrageous behavior.

Radical New York group Revolution Muslim took to their Web site after last week’s “South Park” episode, which portrayed the prophet Muhammad in a bear costume. Revolution Muslim posted the names and work addresses of Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the show’s producers, on its Web site and warned that they could end up dead like a Dutch filmmaker who was killed by a Muslim extremist for his portrayal of the prophet.

In this week’s episode, every mention of Muhammad was bleeped out.

“We should be very concerned about intimidation leading to self-censorship. We are seeing this increasingly,” May said. He pointed to the Ayatollah of Iran’s issuance of a fatwa against Westerners in 1989 and to the death of Dutch filmmaker Theo Van Gogh, who was killed by an Islamic extremist for his portrayal of Muhammad.

Company spokesman Steve Albani would only confirm to The Daily Caller that “Comedy Central did add additional bleeps to the episode that was delivered by South Park,” but he would not elaborate.

Revolution Muslim
is hardly a mainstream organization. Leaders of the radical group have called on Muslims to “rise up” against America, according to a Newsweek article, and they praise Osama bin Laden. “I love him more than I love myself,” one of the group’s leaders told CNN. Yet, law enforcement has said, other than keeping a close eye on them, there’s not much else that can be done.

‘It’s usually a First Amendment right if they don’t cross the threshold of making threats,” an FBI spokesman told Fox News about the group. “There’s nothing we should or could do.”

Albani would also not comment on whether the company has been in touch with the authorities over the group’s threat....

...and a word from xtnyoda to the FBI about the above paragraph... the threat to kill the South Park producers is terroristic threatening... why are you looking the other way?

I am grateful that the likes of Comedy Central... in their South Park episode ‘201’ can depict Jesus downloading porn... without fearing death threats from Christians as the above article goes on to inform... but we must realize that our government should exert the same protections to the producers of South Park as they would if someone called the White House and stated that they were going to kill the President of the United States.

This is an assault on America and left unchallenged will encourage more terrorist assaults on our liberty and freedom of speech.

And, unanswered will further embolden American based Militants.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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Saturday, April 24th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“Joy is the most infallible sign of the presence of God.”
(Léon Henri Marie Bloy, 1846–1917)

When we have joy during periods of trials, heartache, and sorrow, the world may wonder at the source of our power. Our lives should be our testimony that God gives us the strength to smile and to go on because He lives in us.

The apostle Paul in Galatians 2:20 says,
“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”

"God, Thank You for the joy we have from Your dwelling within.

Bro. Bill

God is love!


Lt. Col. (ret) Allen West is setting the record straight about the "War on Terror."

He is running for the House of Representatives in the Miami district of Florida... and is being as ignored as possible by the MSM.

Listen to this video from February and you will understand why.

With thanks to Cliff Jameson who adds the following appeal.


Here is a video clip of a speech given by Lt. Col. (ret) Allen West who served as commander in Iraq and talking about Islam.

Listen to this man and scroll barely down under his speaking platform, where you will find his words printed on the screen as he speaks....

Consider and ponder.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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Friday, April 23, 2010

News Flash!

New Fungus caused by Global Warming!

Reuters alert
Potentially deadly fungus spreading in US, Canada

WASHINGTON, April 22 (Reuters) - A potentially deadly strain of fungus is spreading among animals and people in the northwestern United States and the Canadian province of British Columbia, researchers reported on Thursday.

The airborne fungus, called Cryptococcus gattii, usually only infects transplant and AIDS patients and people with otherwise compromised immune systems, but the new strain is genetically different, the researchers said.

"This novel fungus is worrisome because it appears to be a threat to otherwise healthy people," said Edmond Byrnes of Duke University in North Carolina, who led the study.

"The findings presented here document that the outbreak of C. gattii in Western North America is continuing to expand throughout this temperate region," the researchers said ..."Our findings suggest further expansion into neighboring regions is likely to occur and aim to increase disease awareness in the region."

The new strain appears to be unusually deadly, with a mortality rate of about 25 percent among the 21 U.S. cases analyzed, they said.

"From 1999 through 2003, the cases were largely restricted to Vancouver Island," the report reads.

"Between 2003 and 2006, the outbreak expanded into neighboring mainland British Columbia and then into Washington and Oregon from 2005 to 2009. Based on this historical trajectory of expansion, the outbreak may continue to expand into the neighboring region of Northern California, and possibly further."

.... Freezing can kill the fungus and climate change may be helping it spread, the researchers said.

Even though the report admits that this fungus is genetically altered and different than other fungi... it's spread is probably attributed to Global Warming?

There is no end to the alarmist's... alarms.

xtnyoda, shalomed

Also reported at the Borg Conspiracy I see


Friday, April 23rd. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“A man leaves all kinds of footprints when he walks through life. Some you can see, like his children and his house. Others are invisible, like the prints he leaves across other people’s lives: the help he gives them and what he has said—his jokes, gossip that has hurt others, encouragement.

A man doesn’t think about it, but everywhere he passes, he leaves some kind of mark.”

(Margaret Lee Runbeck)

The writer of Psalm 27:11 gives us these words of wisdom:
“Teach me thy way, O LORD, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.”
If we make this our prayer, think of the mark we can leave.

"God, Thank You for wisdom and protection You give us daily.

Bro. Bill

Happy Birthday Rhonda!


Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Chaplain's Corner

Guest blogger, Chaplain Paul, is one of the most effective chaplains in America today. He is an emergency responder to every situation.

Hey, this is the Chaplain again.

Earlier this week I was driving to an appointment in an adjoining county. I took the back roads, the scenic route, and came across an old farm house. It had been a grand old home; two stories with a high pitched roof, and dormers in the attic.

There were old fashioned lightning rods on the roof peaks. There was a wide covered porch that had wrapped around three sides of the house. It was once a fine place for a family to live. But now – the doors and windows are all gone. The porch roof has collapsed and the whole house is leaning to one side. No one had trimmed the once beautiful bushes in many years and the foundation is crumbling. Neglect has all but destroyed the old home place.

Our lives can be like that. We need constant maintenance to stay in shape – especially when it comes to our spiritual wellbeing. Remember, all you have to do is nothing for decay to start.

There are so many verses in the Bible that warn us about the need for spiritual maintenance:
“Keep vigilant watch over your heart; that's where life starts.”Prov. 4:23

“Guard what God has placed in your care! Don't pay any attention to that godless and stupid talk that sounds smart but really isn't.”1 Tim. 6:20

“So stay awake and keep up your guard.”Acts 20:31

“Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong.”1 Cor. 16:13

“Be on your guard and stay awake. Your enemy, the devil, is like a roaring lion, sneaking around to find someone to attack.”1 Pet. 5:8
You cannot stand still spiritually; you are getting closer to the Lord – or you’re backing away. That’s just how it is!


First Navy Seal vindicated in Iraq.

Breitbart news report
US Navy SEAL cleared in Iraq abuse case

BAGHDAD (AP) - A U.S. Navy SEAL was cleared Thursday of charges he covered up the alleged beating of an Iraqi prisoner suspected of masterminding the grisly 2004 killings of four American security contractors.

A six-man Navy jury found Petty Officer 1st Class Julio Huertas not guilty of dereliction of duty and attempting to influence the testimony of another service member. The jury heard too many differences between the testimony of a sailor who claimed he witnessed the Sept. 1 assault at a U.S. base outside Fallujah, Iraq, and statements from a half-dozen others who denied his account.

Smiling and composed as he left the courthouse at the U.S. military's Camp Victory on Baghdad's western outskirts, Huertas said he felt vindicated.

"It's a big weight off my shoulders," said Huertas, 29, of Blue Island, Illinois. "Compared to all the physical activity we go through, this has been mentally more challenging."

Huertas said he would rejoin the SEALs, the Navy's elite special forces, as soon as possible. His was the first trial of three SEALs accused in the assault of Ahmed Hashim Abed and its alleged cover up....

One down... two to go.

xtnyoda, shalomed

Covered here at Brutally Honest


Day 60

Shalom... The Beginning Place

So Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and called it Yahweh Shalom.
Judges 6:24 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

The encounter is the true beginning of Gideon's life.

The challenges that faced Gideon and God's people were daunting... overwhelming actually...

Typically... this is where we meet Yahweh Shalom... lest we think we need Him not.

Typically... this is exactly where our true lives begin...

Fear Not.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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Thursday, April 22nd. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“I am a part of all that I have met.”
(Alfred, Lord Tennyson, 1809–1892)

Almost every day we hear someone name-dropping. I have even had folks who, in trying to impress me, would tell me they knew someone "important," someone "famous," only to find those name-droppers didn't know that person at all. The saddest part will be the day in judgment, the day when Jesus says,
“Then will I profess unto them, I never knew you.”
(Matthew 7:23)

The most important person we can meet is Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, and that meeting changes every part of whom we are--our thoughts, our lifestyles, our goals--our whole beings.

"God, Thank You for meeting me where I was and bringing me into Your family.

Bro. Bill

God is love!


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Bertha Lewis, CEO of ACORN... publicly and repeatedly... declares that she is a socialist... and predicts that her audience is getting ready to be hunted down and placed in "internment camps" by.... Tea Party members?

So now the Tea Party is being accused of becoming some sort of fascist thug movement? This is too funny/ridiculous/evil.

This friends... is "hate" speech.

Big Government article
Bertha Lewis Unleashed: Bashes Conservatives and the Tea Party, Promotes Socialism
by Morgen Richmond

Apparently CEO Bertha Lewis said of ACORN yesterday “we’re on life support”. Well, I think ACORN’s remaining benefactors might be a little closer to pulling the plug once and for all after watching this bizarre rant from Ms. Lewis from just a few weeks ago. She is speaking at the Winter Conference of the Young Democratic Socialists on March 25, 2010 – watch:

As I’ve said elsewhere, I think it is unbecoming of conservatives to engage in hyperbole and personal attacks. We should allow this to remain the primary tool of our opponents. Lewis is clearly a bit unhinged here, but the underlying debate is an important one for the future of America. Frankly, I wish more “progressives” would express their views so openly. The debate between socialist values of collectivism and government control, and traditional American values of individual liberty and free enterprise is one we should relish......

From what I've seen... most of the Tea Party participants are Grandma's and Grandpa's.... mixed in with a few progressive trouble makers... trying to make a movement that they can't counter with logic and debate... look bad by inciting fake violence.

For now... let them know that impostors are pathetic creatures... yet... not to be pitied.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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Senator Jim DeMint is seeing what xtnyoda has been sharing and believing for some 20 years now... America has entered it's 3rd great awakening.

Senator Jim DeMint interview
David Brody: “Are you concerned at all that some of the social conservative issues, abortion and same sex marriage, some of these other issues because they are taking somewhat of a back seat right now at least to the fiscal issues that there are some inherent problems for social conservatives in something like that?”

Senator Jim DeMint: “No actually just the opposite because I really think a lot of the motivation behind these Tea Party crowds is a spiritual component. I think it’s very akin to the Great Awakening before the American Revolution. A lot of our founders believed the American Revolution was won before we ever got into a fight with the British. It was a spiritual renewal.”

Senator Jim DeMint: “I’m ‘praying for you” comes up more than anything else in these crowds so I know there’s a spiritual component out there.”

Senator Jim DeMint: “I think as this thing (the Tea Party movement) continues to roll you’re going to see a parallel spiritual revival that goes along with it.”

David Brody: “Just so I understand, when you say spiritual revival how are you terming that? What do you mean specifically as in “spiritual revival?”

Senator Jim DeMint: "Well, I think people are seeing this massive government growing and they’re realizing that it’s the government that’s hurting us and I think they’re turning back to God in effect is our salvation and government is not our salvation and in fact more and more people see government as the problem and so I think some have been drawn in over the years to a dependency relationship with government and as the Bible says you can’t have two masters and I think as people pull back from that they look more to God. It’s no coincidence that socialist Europe is post-Christian because the bigger the government gets the smaller God gets and vice-versa. The bigger God gets the smaller people want their government because they’re yearning for freedom."

Do not allow the issues of the day blind you to the evident Glory of Yahweh... the whole earth is filled with His Glory.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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Wednesday, April 21st. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“God rarely allows a soul to see how great a blessing he is.”
(Oswald Chambers, 1874–1917)

If we were to see the blessing we are to others, we might tend to get prideful. God wants us to see and know that He is what is important in our lives. In Ephesians 1:3, the apostle Paul gives credit to God with these words:
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.”

"God, Thank You for loving me and showing Yourself in my weakness.

Bro. Bill

God is love!


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Tuesday, April 20th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“Laugh out loud. That helps flush out the nervous system.”
Charles R. Swindoll (1934– )

The writer of Proverbs 12:22 shares these words with us. “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.” We see folks every day that need a smile and a reason to laugh. Today you will see someone with a broken spirit that needs a kind words and a cup of cool water. The cheer you bring to them will splash out and bless you as well.

"God, Let Your love overflow from my heart. Help my laughter to ring out to a world that needs to hear it.

Bro Bill

God is love!


Monday, April 19, 2010

Monday, April 19th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“A man can accept what Christ has done without knowing how it works; indeed, he certainly won’t know how it works until he’s accepted it.”
C. S. Lewis (1898–1963)

Praise God, there are many things I don’t know about God and how He could love me enough to allow me to be a part of His family. As a child of His, I do know I am blessed because I trust Him and His word. Praise God we are saved by Grace through the faith God Himself gives us (Ephesians 2:8) and not by our knowledge or works.

"God, Thank You for Your unconditional love.

Bro Bill

God is love!


Sunday, April 18, 2010

xtnyoda will be out on assignment Monday and Tuesday... will return to my post Wednesday... Yahweh willing.

xtnyoda, shalomed


OK... it's official... Liberals are defacto more intelligent than Conservatives.

UMMMM.... someone should tell God.

xtnyoda, shalomed


Sunday, April 18th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

"The joy of the heart colors the face."

That statement reminds us of the old song that goes like this, “If you are happy and you know it, then your face will surely show it.”

The writer of Proverbs 15:13 says the same thing another way:
“A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance.”
What about you?

Does your face reveal your happiness?

"God, let my face show forth the love You place in my heart.

Bro. Bill

God loves you!


Saturday, April 17, 2010

Some people don't know the difference between "religious radicalism" and "American Patriotism."

For former president Clinton to equate and insinuate that the "Tea Party" is similar in any way to the radicals that bombed the federal building in Oklahoma City is bordering on a form of libel that borders on being criminal in and of itself.

My Way News report
Clinton alludes to 1995 bombing, says words matter

WASHINGTON (AP) - Former President Bill Clinton warned of a slippery slope from angry anti-government rhetoric to violence like the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, saying "the words we use really do matter."

The two-term Democratic president insisted he wasn't trying to restrict free speech, but in remarks Friday he said incendiary language can be taken the wrong way by some Americans. He drew parallels to words demonizing the government before Oklahoma City.

On April 19, 1995, an anti-government conspiracy led by Army veteran Timothy McVeigh exploded a truck bomb outside the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, killing 168 people.....

The upside to this is that conservatives and freedom lovers really have the progressives terrified... and it's not bombs they are terrified of... it is the truth of liberty that they are terrified of.

Yes former president Clinton... as you said... words matter... even when they come from your mouth.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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The MSM... NBC... reporter tries to guide Darryl Postell... and American black man... at a Tea Party.... to say that he feels "uncomfortable" at Tea Party events.

The man then spanks her good... from his heart... "No... these are my people... Americans!"

A heart warming video.

God Bless Americans!

xtnyoda, shalomed

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The Chaplain's Corner

Guest blogger, Chaplain Paul, is one of the most effective chaplains in America today. He is an emergency responder to every situation.

Hey, this is the Chaplain again.

It had been one of those very long, very tiring days. It was about 1 am when I finally left the Emergency Room and headed home. As I left the parking lot I noticed there was a full moon in the sky. I thought how nice it was to see that big bright moon, and how it seemed to lift my spirits to see it shining up there in the night.

Then I remembered; the moon was not really shining, it was just reflecting the light of the sun that was now out of sight. That got me to thinking; I need to be more ‘moon-like’, reflecting the light of the Son, Jesus Christ. Just as the moon has no real light of its own, the only way I can truly shine is to reflect His goodness and glory. 2 Corinthians 3:18 says,
“And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.”
I thought about how a mirror reflects light. The cleaner the mirror, the more light it can reflect. As I drove home I prayed,
“Lord, please let me reflect You to those around me. And keep me clean so that Your reflection will be bright.”

Say, how’s your reflection? Do others see Jesus in you? Does your mirror need cleaning?

Cross and Shield Ministries


Saturday, April 17th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

“Being humble involves the willingness to be reckoned a failure in everyone’s sight but God’s.”
(Roy M. Pearson, 1914– )

The beginning of recovery is to admit we have failed (sinned) and come short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23). The victory comes when we see that no matter what we did, God loves us and wants us to be a part of His family. We are so valuable that He let His Son go to the cross and pay the price we owed (John 3:16). He sees us as His Son and not as failures.

"God, Thank You for loving me. All to You I owe.

Bro. Bill

God loves you!


Friday, April 16, 2010

Day 59

Shalom... "It Is Finished!"

So Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and called it Yahweh Shalom.
Judges 6:24 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

The last words of our Master on Calvary are usually translated, "It is Finished." That is a fair enough attempt yet leaves something missing somehow.

Christ of course spoke Aramaic... or a variant of Hebrew if you will... and the last words of Christ spoken on Calvary were not "words" at all... He spoke one word... Shalom... meaning... completed.

There really is not an English word to compare or carry the richness and power of the Hebrew... Shalom.

For Christ on Calvary the utterance carried the completion of Yahweh's wrath... the penalty paid in full... Christ's mission on earth accomplished... the law fulfilled... redemption's price is paid... to get some idea of the power of this single word cried out by our Messiah.


xtnyoda, shalomed

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Friday, April 16th. Today's cherished Nugget from guest blogger Pastor Bill.

It is finished! The battle is over,
It is finished! There will be no more war;
It is finished! The end of the conflict,
It is finished! And Jesus is Lord.

(Bill and Gloria Gaither)

This song bursts forth from my soul all year long, but especially on the Sunday morning when we celebrate the resurrection and on the day I finish, seal, and mail my taxes. It is finished! And Jesus is Lord! The writer of Psalm 135:1 praises God with these words:
“Praise ye the LORD. Praise ye the name of the LORD; praise him, O ye servants of the LORD.”
It is finished! And Jesus is Lord!

"God, thank You for being You and for loving me.

Bro. Bill

God Is Great, All the Time!


Thursday, April 15, 2010

Day 58

Shalom... "Completed"

So Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and called it Yahweh Shalom.
Judges 6:24 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)

For 7 years Israel had been under the strong arm of Midian... as a judgment from God... now... it was time for deliverance from the just sentence that God had given to the nation.

One part of the revealed name, Yahweh Shalom, is of course now in the meaning of "Shalom."

The basic meaning... "complete."

In our text here... by revealing the name, Yahweh Shalom, God is announcing that Israel's punishment is "complete"... and vows to that completion by the force of The Name... Yahweh... now Yahweh Shalom... in other words... by all the power and authority of The Name... Yahweh declares that the dark night is over... the chastening is complete... Yahweh Shalom.

God here swears to it by His name.

xtnyoda, shalomed

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These wretched reports are coming in like one tsunami... after another.

Here is the latest.

Here is the latest.

One News Now article
The ENDA innocence for our children
by Andrea Lafferty (Traditional Values Coalition)

While many of us were focused on defeating government-run healthcare, the Democrats and their homosexual and transgender allies were working overtime on something equally sinister.

House Democrats have been quietly plotting how to rush through the so-called "Employment Non-Discrimination Act" (ENDA) which will force every public school in America to hire transgendered teachers and forbid their re-assignment out of the classroom. A vote on ENDA in the House Education and Labor Committee is likely on April 21.

Under ENDA, federal, state and local governments, as well as businesses with 15 or more employees, will be forced to employ and affirm men who wear dresses -- including school teachers.

Currently, 38 states do not make "gender identity" into a protected minority under law. But once Barack Obama signs ENDA, this will change. "Gender Identity" is actually a Gender Identity Disorder (GID) listed as a mental disorder by the American Psychiatric Association. A GID person thinks he or she is the opposite sex.

What supporters of ENDA do not want you to know is that under ENDA, those 38 states' laws will be overruled by federal law.

Every state will be forced to make cross-dressers, drag queens, transsexuals, and she-males* (male-female hybrids) into protected classes. Therefore, every school district in America will be forbidden by law to reassign any she-male teacher because this would be considered "discrimination." Thus, children will be trapped in classes taught by men who dress as women, and students will be indoctrinated to affirm that this is normal behavior.

Children need a stable and secure environment in which to learn. ENDA threatens that. Our nation's children will be victims of ENDA.

All too often I hear, "Hey, my kids are in a Christian school" or "My kids are home schooled so this won't affect me." The reality is that an estimated 90+ percent of Christian kids attend public school in the United States. ENDA will impact these children in devastating ways.

Consider what's already happening in certain states:
• In 2008, students and parents were outraged to learn that a female music teacher at California's Foxboro Elementary School underwent surgery to become a man. Parents were not informed about this so-called sex change in advance so they could remove their children from her class. In addition, the kids were required to refer to her as "Mister." The school district refused to notify parents about this she-male's so-called sex change because of "privacy laws" – that is, federal HIPPA laws.

• In 2006, students in New York's Batavia High School were forced to remain in the class of a male teacher who was undergoing so-called surgical transition to female. Parents were refused the right to opt their children out of his class because he claimed protection under New York's disability laws, and, therefore, had to be accommodated by the school district.

• In 1999, Minnesota music teacher Alyssa Williams underwent a so-called sex change operation from male to female while teaching at a Middle School in the Anoka-Hennepin School District. Parents were angered when their children were subjected to this man's bizarre sexual transformation. The school superintendent said they could not reassign the man to another position because it would have violated state law which gave special protected rights to transgendered individuals.

And these are only a few of the grotesque ENDA horror stories.

If ENDA passes, Christian businesses, Christian camps, Christian counselors, Christian child care, Christian bookstores, and Christian TV and radio stations will be forced by ENDA to hire individuals whose behavior is in violation of their religious tenets.

Why are children going to be exposed to teachers who have a psycho-sexual mental disorder? Who is behind this sinister effort? Enter Chai Feldblum, a lesbian activist who was recess-appointed by President Obama just this month. She now serves on the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which would help enforce the law if passed.

ENDA was written by Feldblum. She wants the government to promote every type of relationship as equal to traditional marriage, including "polyamorous" relationships (those involving three or more sexual partners). She states: "I, for one, am not sure whether marriage is a normatively good institution. I have moved away from the belief that marriage is clearly the best normative way to structure intimate relationships."

Feldblum also believes that sexual liberty trumps religious liberty. "Sexual liberty should win in most cases," she has stated. "There can be a conflict between religious liberty and sexual liberty, but in almost all cases the sexual liberty should win because that's the only way that the dignity of gay people can be affirmed in any realistic manner."

ENDA can and must be stopped. Most members of Congress don't know that under ENDA, schools will be forbidden to reassign any teacher undergoing a so-called sex change because this would be considered "discrimination"; nor do they know that public schools across America will no longer be able to avoid hiring transgender individuals to teach schoolchildren.

U.S. representatives in Congress, many hoping to avoid tough votes as they focus on their reelection, must learn what this bill would mean for schools and for kids. Impressionable young children should be protected from these teachers who are undergoing their own identity crises.

Congress must hear from you that a vote for ENDA is a vote for the LGBT agenda and against children.

In response to this threat to America's children, Traditional Values Coalition has launched a campaign,, to warn parents and grandparents about the chaos ENDA will bring into our children's classroom.

Do you realize we are in a spiritual war yet?

Consider and ponder.

xtnyoda, shalomed

H/T Guest Blogger Debra!

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Here is Wintley Phipps sharing about what it is that truly "brings us together."

Amazing Grace.

Be Blessed... and never be the same.

xtnyoda, shalomed


Johnathan Gadfly is xtnyoda's newest guest blogger. He is a tenacious student... searching for the truth in scripture... and... challenging to the lazy mind.


Yawn...Calvinism verses Arminian: A Love Letter to the 'Google Scholars' Who Blog About This Issue

Both Calvinism and Arminianism are skubalon, but Arminianism less so. For full disclosure, the position I hold is a Molinist/Middle-Knowledge variant. This means that I believe God is more all-powerful and all-knowing, more majestic, more sovereign, more merciful and just, more wrathful, more loving, more full of grace, and more glorious than either of the two other wimpy systems can imagine.

Like the other two systems, my view is more philosophy than theology. The difference is that people who hold my view have the honesty and integrity to admit this is all philosophical, while most people in the other camps do not. Since this is a theological exercise, by examining several favorite Calvinist passages in Scripture, it will be demonstrated that the Calvinist interpretation is completely amiss.

First, it should be examined what God actually revealed He did 'before the foundation of the world'. It is important to note that simply seeing words like foreknown, foreknowledge, predestined and so forth do not necessarily refer to 'before the foundation of the world', and importing that paradigm at every mention of those words is unwarranted eisegesis. Unless stated, that lens should be omitted.

John 17:24 says Jesus was loved before the foundation of the world. Ephesians 1:4 says an “us” was chosen in Him, meaning Christ, to be holy and blameless. This will be examined more later. 1 Peter 1:20 says “He”, meaning Christ, was foreknown before the foundation of the world but 'manifest in these last times'. Revelation 13:8 states either the Lamb was slain, the book of life (in which names may or may not be blotted out of) or both were before the foundation of the world. 2 Timothy 1:9 states that an “us” were saved by grace that was given in Jesus before the ages for a purpose. Just to be nice, Acts 2:23-24 about the crucifixion by lawless men and His resurrection will be added as well for good measure.

Well, that is it. It is a lot of Jesus Christ, and not a lot of anything else. Thus, whatever else is said by any theological camp about God's eternal decree is more philosophical musing and speculation, and less Scriptural exegesis. As interesting as the philosophical musing may be, it is simply just that.

Here is an examination of what was foreknown and predestined.

I do believe God foreknew all things that do happen, or even could happen but does not, in creation before creation, but that is not an issue here. 1 Peter 1:2 says the elect is according to God's foreknowledge. This does not imply the elect is conditioned by such foreknowledge, but only that Peter is writing to the elect in Diaspora according to foreknowledge of God and set apart by the Spirit for the obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ. Romans 8:29 refers to 'those' that were foreknown. Romans 11:2 refers to 'His people”, meaning Israel, that God foreknew.

As for predestined, Romans 8:29 refers to a conformation to the image of Christ. Romans 8:30 repeats the implication of verse 29. Acts 4:28 refers to the predestined plan by God's hand concerning the crucifixion. Ephesians 1:5 refers to an 'us' being predestined to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ according to God's purpose. Finally, Ephesians 1:11 refers to a predestined inheritance and purpose for God who works (is working, energountov, present participle) all things (not pre-decreed all things) according to the council of His will.

That is a lot more of Christ, and things stored up in Him, to be received by an 'us' or 'those' according to specific things determined by God before the foundation of the world. Despite the length of 16-17th Century creeds on the subject, the Biblical data is slim enough to say that much of the 'before the foundation of the world' stuff is not revealed, other than God deciding to create of course, and almost everything else is speculative.

Now, the exegesis of the favorite passages. As noted above in Ephesians 1:4, Paul knows how to write the phrase 'before the foundation of the world'. Where is this found in Romans 8 or 9? Nowhere! Where is the warrant to break up God's inspired words to Paul to reassure believers in Romans 8 with a philosophical lens of 'before the foundation of the world' at verse 29? Nowhere! The who, not the when, is what Paul has in mind at verse 29. Who did god foreknow (or 'forelove')? Calvinists say those He predestined to be saved before the foundation of the world. Arminians say those God foreknew or foresaw would freely accept His offer of salvation through prevenient grace. But what does Paul say?

Paul says it is those in verse 15 who “...have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, 'Abba! Father!'” (ESV) Those in verse 17 who are children and heirs. Those in verse 18 who will be glorified. Those in verse 23 who groan with creation for the redemption of their bodies. Those in verse 25 who hope and wait with patience. Those in verse 26 who the Spirit helps in weakness and intercedes in prayer. Those in verse 27 whose hearts are searched by the Spirit. Those in verse 36 who are being put to death all day long like sheep to be slaughtered. Those who repented and believed the Gospel! Whatever Arminians and Calvinists are debating about here, Paul is not talking about it.

Calvinists say “those” are the ones God picked before the foundation of the world. When asked what God foreknew or foreloved about them, the Calvinist replies “nothing”. Which is as well to say God does not forelove them or foreloves them for no reason whatsoever. Paul says otherwise all throughout the text! Speaking of glorification and conformed to the image of Christ, that is a future event as the context states. The only “when” in context that the foreknowing occurs as discussed in the passage is any time before that redemption and glorification of their bodies that occurs in the still to come future, as the 'glorified' in Romans 8:30 is at the end of the chain of theological terms.

Parsing Greek verb tenses to use the “completed past action” response offers the Calvinist no safe refuge.

Paul's point is not to say these things have already occurred in reality in eternity's past. Context comes before grammar. Paul's point in using the tense is to offer a guarantee for the hope in the context of reassurance. Importing anything else from outside the context is pure speculation. The predestination refers to the being conformed to the image of Christ. It does not refer to individuals selected before the foundation of the world. That idea is nowhere in the context. Importing it into the text is pure eisegesis.

As for Romans 9, Romans 9:1-5 refers to Israel and Paul's passion for them to be saved. Romans 10:1 states “Brothers, my heart's desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved.” (ESV)

If the words 'salvation' or 'saved' and 'before the foundation of the world” appeared anywhere in Romans 9, or if Romans 10:1 stated something like “Brothers, my heart's desire and prayer to God is to explain to them how salvation works by the eternal decree” or whatever, then Calvinists may have made their case.

Unfortunately, none of that is anywhere in the text. It follows that Calvinists have
imported a false paradigm of salvation by eternal decree and imposed it on a passage that says nothing about either. Rather, Romans 9 is the clear writing of Paul that God has the sovereign right to use Israel to bring about the Messiah so that both Jews and Gentiles can be God's covenant people through faith in Jesus Christ. This is despite the fact Jews want to be accepted by their will and running after the law.

Paul pleads that God's purpose was to bring about Christ, and Israel has no right to complain to God the means by which He accepts people into the covenant.

Finally, because Christ has come into the world, the Word of God indeed did not fail, which was Paul's thesis in Romans 9:6. Moreover, the thesis was not salvation of selected individuals to election via eternal decree. Unfortunately, space prohibits further explanation, but the context is obvious, as is the Calvinists' bungling of it.

Ephesians 1 brings everything into focus. The whole context is about Christ, and those mentioned as 'we' are clearly Jewish Christians, those mentioned as 'you' are clearly Gentile Christians, and those mentioned as 'us' are clearly both Jewish and Gentile Christians. Far from the Calvinist reading of Ephesians 1:4 saying something like “He chose us to be in Him before the foundation of the world...”, it states “even as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him.” (ESV)

It means God chose both to be in Him before the foundation of the world for a purpose (see Rom. 8:28b). It means as Ephesians 2:1-15 states “For He Himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in His flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that He might create in Himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace.” (ESV)

No predestination for individual salvation here. It is Paul illustrating that God's sovereign plan was to bring both under Christ. Making this say something else betrays Paul's point, which is that God, before the foundation of the world, decreed that Christ would be not only the bridge between God and man, but also for Jew and Gentile. This “new man”, the church, as the rest of Ephesians goes on to discuss in terms of how they should live, is the 'us' in Ephesians 1:4. It is all about Christ and those in Him. How does one get in Him and receive all the predestined things?

Easy. Paul writes in Romans 10:9, “if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Jesus says in John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” It is that simple.

Philosophical systems and paradigms that go “beyond what is written” (1 Cor 4:6) make a simple Gospel about God's love and Christ's work divisive and complicated. Salvation is 100% the work and act of God in regards to drawing, calling, convicting to lead to repentance, justifying, sanctifying, and glorifying (Romans 2:4, 8:29-30).

Salvation is also 100% the action and responsibility of man in regards to repenting and believing the Gospel (Mark 1:15) and not resisting the Holy Spirit (Acts 7:51). Man can not do God's part, and God does not do man's part. Only God can do God's part, and man is actually the one that repents and believes, or not. Deal with it.

More importantly, rejoice in it!

Christians should leave the philosophical speculation out of the commentaries and preaching and exegete the passages the best one faithfully can to the context as written.

Philosophy is wonderful and helpful, but nothing to be dogmatic about, especially when it comes to trying to proclaim God's mind in regards to the council of His will and His eternal decree. In a book of the Bible many think they can know or even glimpse these things, Paul responds with Romans 11:34, which says “For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?” (ESV) In other words, Paul says, “knock it off and get real.” Christians should stick to what we know, and be very humble discussing what we do not.

The Bible alone is all that is needed here to clear things up. No need to debate “God's sovereignty verses man's free will”, as if there is some contradiction...well, except for Calvinists. No need to respond to absurd straw-man arguments such as, “if God's wanted all to be saved, and not all are saved, then God is a complete failure.” What dog vomit!

There is no need debate how dead is dead in sin and what that actually means. If God's decree is something other than Calvinism by the sheer good pleasure of God's will according to His own council, then Calvinists ought to pipe down and stop mocking God and how He wanted things as described from the plain reading of the Bible without philosophical paradigms foreign to the text imposed on it.

Anyway, nor is there really a need to respond to even more ridiculous arguments from Calvinists such as, “if God is not sovereign in predestining from eternity's past all things whatsoever come to pass, and did not decree from eternity's past absolutely everything even to the point of being a petty and meticulous micro-manager, which includes the foreordaining of when every baby ever in history skubalons the diaper, or worse, whenever eight year old boys are raped, then God has absolutely no control over anything in creation at all...blah, blah, blah.” (Irrational Internet Calvinists)

This nonsense rhetoric demeans God.

Re-read Jeremiah 19:5 and so forth and rewrite the confessions. Scripture comes first. If Calvinists paid attention to their own Islamic philosophical reasoning behind their theology, perhaps they would realize why so many people think they are unreasonable, un-Biblical, and arrogant; whether they are the “Dr.” James “The Keith Olbermann of Calvinism” White kind of hothead or not. Okay, the rant is over, but was deserved. Even Martin Luther would perhaps smile, were his own “coarse a**” alive today and calm enough to read it. Fight pompous with sarcasm on occasion. Unlike the Popes, Scripture is plenty found here. (Driscoll)

Nevertheless, despite this Biblical presentation, Calvinists and Arminians are still not happy. The question both the Calvinist and Arminian really want to know and care about is “Could the person saved have chosen otherwise?” 'No' pleases one, and 'yes' pleases the other. Sadly, but thankfully, this is a question that the writers of Scripture not only do not answer, but could completely care less about.

However, if that is really, really important to someone, or to some the most important thing, given the current obsession with this issue, have at it. Compared to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, Calvinism, Arminianism, and my own Molinism/Middle Knowledge variant is skubalon.

Johnathan will respond to honest queries.

Consider and ponder.

xtnyoda, shalomed


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