Wally Wonders Why

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Politics

Advice on judges

cominus Lucky for you it won’t be coming from my undereducated brain.  No, a friend sent this link to Cominus.com where Dean Isaacson, formerly of Judicial Forum, reviews judges who are being elected right now during this primary election.  Careful though; his opinion comes with a word of caution:

if you do not like the idea of mixing God and politics, especially if you believe Jesus Christ is only good for salvation from fire and has no authority over men and nations, stay far away from cominus.com.

 

2008 Judicial Forum Election Picks for Washington State

Engaging in Politics Without Losing Your Soul

Happy EasterOften, being a Christian comes into conflict with blogging; especially blogging in the political realm. My aim, as always, is to be a Christian first, and everything else second, third, fourth… Part of the nature of being human is that this isn’t always easy to live a Christian life. It takes constant effort. Truth be told, the Corinthians passage, in the upper right of this blog, is not for readers, it is for me. I must constantly remind myself to be on my guard, stand firm in my faith, be a man of courage, be strong and do everything in love.

From time to time I get asked how I come up with things to write about. Well let me expose another truth; there is no shortage of ideas. I have stacks of notes and dozens of drafts of post that will never be. Because, perhaps the biggest struggle in being a Christian blogger is determining what not to write. I could increase traffic with sensationalism and gossip. But for what purpose; to feed my pride?

For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?
(Mark 8:36 KJV)

That one scripture weighs heavy on the mind of this blogger. It is the one that makes me question my motivation for writing any particular post. It is what helps me to determine what not to write. So, imagine my delight when I opened an email from Andrew Jackson of SmartChristian.com and found his teaching newsletter, also based on Mark 8:36, and also about this exact struggle. Andrew Jackson also posted this on RedBlueChristian.com and after contacting him last night, he has allowed me to also post it here. Based on scripture, I believe his guidelines would serve all Christians, not just bloggers.

HOW TO ENGAGE IN POLITICS WITHOUT LOSING YOUR SOUL

by Andrew Jackson.

I titled this post based on Jesus’ statement found in Mark 8:36, What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?” The reason that I chose this convicting passage is because over the years I have watched many Christians who became zealously active in partisan politics actually “lose their souls.”

That is, they lost their unique public witness as a Christian; they began to act contrary to the character of Christ and the fruit of the Holy Spirit; and they became agents of division within the church itself.

Below I offer 10 biblical guidelines on how Christians can engage in politics without “losing their souls.”

  1. Christians must never allow ourselves to equate the biblical Kingdom of God with any human political party or nation (John 18:36; Isaiah 9:7; Matthew 6:33, Philippians 3:20, Revelation 11:15). As Christians we must be diligent in maintaining and perserving the distinctiveness between the Kingdom of God and the kingdoms of this world. We must never fuse the two. The great “utopian illusion” that easily enters our politics is that peace, harmony, and prosperity for all can be brought about in the world through human political means.
  2. Christians must never allow ourselves to elevate a specific politician to a messianic or savior status (1 Peter 3:15). In our entertainment and celebrity culture, it is becoming more common for people to infuse politicians with almost a messianic or savior status. In other words, people begin to believe a politician’s extraordinary promises and that they actually can single-handedly produce almost supernatural social results. As Christians, we have one Lord, and we must resist all attempts to exalt any human politician to unrealistic heights.
  3. Christians must not just vote, but more importantly, we must pray for our government and the leaders of all political parties (Matthew 5:44, 1 Timothy 2:1-2). In our polarized political society, many Christians are tempted to bless the politician or political party they support, and curse the other one they don’t. How unbiblical! The Bible is clear, we are to pray for all political and government leaders, even our political enemies.
  4. Christians must always remember that our ultimate security is in Christ and in the unshakeable kingdom of God, no matter what presidential candidate or party wins (Hebrews 12:26-29). One of the dangers that many Christians seem to often fall into is that we begin to elevate the outcome of presidential elections to an apocalyptic status. In other words, if our presidential candidate or party does not win, we begin to see it as the end of the world. This is what I call the “Y2K complex.” When we allow ourselves to understand politics in apocalyptic terms, we at the same time express an unbelief in the sovereignty and Lordship of God over his creation and human history. Yes, elections have real consequences for people, but in the larger scheme of history, don’t worry, no matter who becomes our president, God is in contril and will take care of things.
  5. Christians must never allow ourselves to bring the divisiveness and polarization of political parties into the church, the family of God (Romans 16:17, 1 Corinthians 1:11-12). We cannot allow partisan politics to divide the body of Christ. Invidual Christians have freedom of conscience before God and the Bible, and as a result, we must accept the fact that there will be diversity of political opinions in the church. We must never allow diverse political perspectives cause conflict and divisions in the church.
  6. Christians must never allow ourselves to demonize or dehumaize another person – no matter what politician it is – because every single human has been created in the image of God (Colossians 3:8, Matthew 7:1, James 4:12). Christians must not engage in demeaning and judging other people, no matter whether we agree with them politically or not.
  7. Christians must never engage in angry confrontational arguments, instead of being open to learn through civil debate and dialogue (James 1:20, Philippians 2:14-16, 2 Timothy 2:14). When we interact with other people with hard-core dogmatic positions, we demonstrate an ugly pride that demeans the character of Christ. As Christians we must humble ourselves, understand that as humans we are limited in our understanding, and that we all can learn more about the very complex issues that face our nation. Christians must always engage in politics through a path of reason and civility.
  8. Christians must never allow ourselves to become so intertwined so closely with one political party that we forfeit our independent identity as followers of Christ. When we do, we lose the prophetic voice to speak and clarify biblical truth to all politicians and political parties (1 Timothy 3:15, Ephesians 4:15, Romans 3:4).
  9. Christians must never allow ourselves to engage in partisan politics by supporting divisiveness between races, between male and female, between rich and poor, and between the young and old (Matthew 5:9, 2 Corinthians 5:18-19). Electoral politics is all about dividing society into specific voting blocks. And as a result, politics usually divides our society, instead of uniting it. Christians must always function as peacemakers and reconcilers in the public square, and resist every temptation to join the political tactics of dividing people for political gain.
  10. Christians must not allow ourselves to fall into the trap of simply cursing the darkness through negativity, instead of constructively engaging our world as perserving salt and illuminating light (Matthew 5:13-16). The cultural and missional mandate of kingdom Christians requires us to stop cursing the darkness and start lighting more candles that reflects God’s truth, compassion, and love.

Creative Commons License photo credit: Koshyk

Lincoln Day Dinner

Over the weekend, we had the opportunity to attend the Whatcom Republican Party Lincoln Day Dinner. A first, but not the last, for us. We had a chance to put faces to names of those we had previously only known through email and a chance to hear two great men speak.

DinoRossibwI made it to a Dino Rossi rally he held awhile back, but I really liked having my wife hear him speak also this time. She claims to not understand politics, but his message was simple and strong; Make Washington a bad place to be a criminal and a good place to do business. As the keeper of the household budget she also clearly understood his other message of balancing the state budget through controlled and targeted spending, not by increasing our taxes.

Also, a couple of my wife’s friends, also Rossi supporters, knew we were to be seated at his table so they wanted us to inquire about his presidential choice. But even though we were at the same table, the auction was loud and he was up and about meeting and greeting everyone. And with 400-450 people in attendance that is exactly what he should have been doing, so we’ll find another opportunity down the road.

wayneperrymanbw Rev. Wayne Perryman, author, radio host, and speaker was the highlight of the evening. I had recently read his book Unveiling the Whole Truth. But hearing him speak in person, about the effect media has on public opinion, was a rare opportunity for us simple folk up in Ferndale. Even more rare was the chance my wife an I had to sit down with him for a few minutes and talk as parents about liberalism in school system.

Rev. Perryman also had a chance to field a few questions, one of which was about Barack Obama. His answer was very similar to one I might give, but it would never be accepted from a middle aged white Republican male. The reception may be different from Rev. Perryman. You’ll want to keep tabs on CSPAN to see his response for yourself.  A lot of local Democrats and recent Obama converts may be given pause to rethink their presidential choice in 2008.

Awesome to see the room packed to the doors with people anxious to put and end to the Democratic Party’s failing secular socialist experiment. We do need a change in our state; a change back to the ideals of the Republican Party. It’s happening.

4.5 minutes

During my 4 mile drive into work this morning, I listened to 4.5 minutes of Stephanie Miller on the new AM 930 progressive talk. It was 4.5 of hyperbole, laugh tracks, innuendos and vaudevillian humor mostly at the expense of John McCain, but squarely aimed at conservatives. I’d say the only fact I heard during that 4.5 minutes was in itself hyperbole. It was of course the now, in less than 12 hours, famous quote by Ann Coulter.

She’s more conservative that he is.”
and
“I will campaign for her if it’s McCain.”
and
“She lies less than John McCain. She’s smarter than John McCain.”

AOL news

Of course this is hyperbole on her part. I should know, as I said nearly the same thing yesterday morning.

Bottom line: If I wanted a liberal candidate who said they were strong on defense I would vote for Hillary. At least she is consistent.

Why I support Mitt Romney

Now you may be thinking that Ann stole my thoughts from these very pages, or you might think that I secretly write her material. But no; It is just a matter of great minds thinking a like. Not my great mind, her’s and someone else’s, that I would be able to think of if I did in fact have a great mind.

Usually when I feel like mindless humor, I go rent a B-movie, now I can just listen to AM 930.

Narrowing field

Fred Thompson and I are in sync on the biggest issues and challenges facing our nation. So even though he has left the race, the finish line hasn’t moved. Fred Thompson’s short list of the biggest issues and challenges faced by our nation today still stands as a good measure for those still in the race.debate

  • The ongoing threat of Islamist terrorism
  • The unresolved economic threat of entitlements
  • The need for lower taxes to ensure our nation remains economically competitive and innovative
  • The need to secure our borders
  • The need to support families and to protect our children from the harder edges of culture
  • The need to remain engaged in the world while remaining true to America’s principles

Just a cursory look has narrowed the field pretty significantly. First, if you’ve read here much, you should know by now there will be no Democrat at the top of my list; socialism just doesn’t solve these issues and in the financial cases doesn’t even acknowledge them as issues. That leaves the list of candidates under my consideration as either those running as Republicans or those on the long list of fringe candidates. Ron Paul running as a Republican is sort of a weird situation, but I quit thinking of him as a potential way back last spring. And Rudy Giuliani? Well pro-choice and pro-domestic partnerships… I said I wasn’t going to consider Democrats.

So realistically, using this elimination process, I’m looking at Mitt Romney, John McCain and Mike Huckabee. The next step is to look at who is the best fit for addressing the list of biggest issues and challenges in our nation today.

For expediencies sake I’m going to set John McCain off to the side on shelf. Due to frequent modulation on issues, I may have to restart my analysis each time he opens his mouth. If neither of the Mitt Romney nor Mike Huckabee pass muster I’ll pull John McCain back off the shelf for a look see. So for Wally, the field has narrowed to two; Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee.

2008 Candidates on abortion

This post is an adjunct to Right to Life.

I feel that the right of an unborn child to live is about the most basic right there can be for anyone regardless of nationality, religion etc. Yet our nation’s candidates are split into 2 camps on this issue. In the case of the 3 Democratic Party front runners; Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and John Edwards, they all seem to think that woman’s right to choose supersedes the right of a child to live. Even to the extent that they all oppose banning gruesome partial birth abortions. They say that children who are cruel to pets grow up to be serial killers, but I say that surely at least a few have grown up to be Democrat presidential candidates.

Barack Obama – Supports Roe v. Wade; criticized Supreme Court decision that upheld ban on partial-birth abortions. “I think that most Americans recognize that this is a profoundly difficult issue for the women and families who make these decisions.

Hillary Clinton – Supports Roe v. Wade; opposes ban on partial-birth abortions; judges should protect women’s rights. “This decision, which is one of the most fundamental, difficult and soul searching decisions a woman and a family can make, is also one in which the government should have no role.

John Edwards – Supports Roe v. Wade; criticized Supreme Court decision that upheld ban on partial-birth abortions; opposed John Roberts’s nomination, partly based on his abortion views. I believe in a woman’s right to choose…I believe they should have the freedom to make them for themselves.

NYT Election Guide 2008

For myself, I tend to value life over choice and convenience. Also, being number 6 in a family of 8 kids, I am happy my parents valued life as I do. And lastly I am happy that there is a political party that believes the same. The Republican Party has a wide field of candidates all basically for a child’s right to life.

John McCain – Wants to overturn Roe v. Wade, but has been supportive in the past; supported Supreme Court decision that upheld ban on partial-birth abortions; “strict constructionist judges.”

Mike Huckabee – Wants to overturn Roe v. Wade; supported Supreme Court decision that upheld ban on partial-birth abortions; opposes federal funding. I’m pro-life because I believe life begins at conception, and I believe that we should do everything possible to protect that life because it is the centerpiece of what makes us unique as an American people. We value the life of one as if it’s the life of all.

Fred Thompson – Wants to overturn Roe vs. Wade; opposes partial-birth abortions. “We’ve had a lot of different kind of issues come up in the Senate from federal funding to stem cell research, Roe versus Wade and the partial birth abortion debate or as former Senator Pat Moynihan of New York used to say it’s more like infanticide than partial birth abortion.”

Mitt Romney – Wants to overturn Roe v. Wade, but was supportive in the past; supported Supreme Court decision that upheld ban on partial-birth abortions. “I’ve always been personally pro-life, but for me there was a great question about whether or not government should intrude in that decision. And when I ran for office, I said I’d protect the law as it was, which is effectively a pro-choice position. About two years ago when we were studying cloning in our state, I said, look, we have gone too far; it’s a brave new world mentality that Roe v. Wade has given us; and I change my mind…I won’t apologize to anybody for becoming pro-life.”

Ron Paul – Wants to overturn Roe v. Wade; opposes partial-birth abortions. “As an obstetrician, I know that partial birth abortion is never a necessary medical procedure. It is a gruesome, uncivilized solution to a social problem.”
NYT Election Guide 2008

If some day it were possible to ask the unborn child how they felt about their impending abortion, I’m reasonably sure they would choose their right to life over your right to choose.

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