Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Scripture interprets itself!

Okay, this reeeeeeeally bugs me.

I know lots and lots of people like to take Psalm 46:10, where God is quoted as saying "Be still, and know that I am God." in the NIV, as saying, "God just wants you to have some quiet time with him, shutting out the outside world and being with him and doing quiet God-things."

Is this something Christians should do? Yes, spending time that is explicitly set aside for God, one on one, is a good thing. Does the Bible teach this? Absolutely. Does Psalm 46:10 teach this? No no no no no!!!

For crying out loud people, when we say what a verse means, we use CONTEXT! We don't just take a solitary verse (in this case, just a portion of a verse) and take its meaning verbatim, otherwise we would assume that Jesus is a door, a vine, a gate, and a shepherd. Literally.

Let's look at the FULL verse of Psalm 46:10, and for kicks and grins, let's use the New English Translation (

"He says, 'Stop your striving and recognize that I am God!I will be exalted over the nations! I will be exalted over the earth!'"

Interesting. The translator's notes indicate that yes, the literal hebrew translation of the first part of the verse is as it is in the NIV. But why does he translate it that way? Because this message is being delivered to the nations that are warring around them, and God's message is for them to trust in his protection and to cease their senseless warring. The translator gets this because it is a similar meaning given to other verses elsewhere in the Old Covenant. The best part is that you get this very meaning by examining the context of the entire psalm. I'll let you read the entire thing, but here's what you get: Nations war, drowning out the voice of God with the clash of their spears. But God speaks up for their silence. In the end, he will shatter their swords and rend their shields, for He is the supreme, and they will learn to obey and trust in him.

Now does that have anything to do with being quiet and reading your bible? No. I hope this has been informative for those of you who don't let the bible speak for itself.


They never cease to amaze me

Well, yesterday I saw the College Democrats on the quad selling t-shirts and handing out stickers. "Buck Fush in '04" they read. Clever, if thinly veiled hatred towards the President. Actually, it's not really clever. It's old and ridiculous. If you hate the President that much that you're willing to wear a t-shirt so as to let the whole world know, why not just skip the niceties and say it minus the spoonerism? Yeah, remember when people were saying that the Democratic party was not a party of hate? That hate is not a family value? Right. I continue to find that line hard to believe when it comes from Democrats.

And it just keeps getting worse. I saw them out there today again. I would have shrugged it off if I hadn't overheard one of the sellers lambasting someone who was surely planning to vote Republican in a few days. This is what I heard: "Because Bush is a maniac . . . and how about, you're an idiot?" Ah, intelligent political discourse. I'm convinced! I'll vote for Kerry! Really, I wish I had said something to the girl right then, but I was too concerned with getting food in my stomach to think about it much at the time. Maybe I'll leave early for my next class and give 'em hell out on the quad.

This is sad, really. Last week, the College Democrats and Republicans had a debate on the election, and it was talked up in the paper as being this intelligent, polite exchange. It's all a lie. The Democrats (at least here) aren't in their natural state with that approach. That's just what they pull out to make nice to the public. Really, they're much more comfortable with a "We hate Bush and everyone who disagrees with us" type approach. Sad.

Side note: Where on earth have the College Republicans been at ISU for the last year or so? I mean, I know the College Democrats have been doing big voter registration drives and what not, campaigning big time for Kerry and Obama. Where's the Republicans? Did they give up? Are they scared of the Democrats' gestapo tactics? Is it just too much to expect Illinois to vote Republican? What gives, people?

Well, that's it for now. I'll have some more soon (hopefully).


Monday, October 18, 2004

Vox Blogoli IV

Well, I’ve been meaning to post for a while, but classes have gotten way out of hand lately. There’s been a lot going on, and I really wish I had covered some of it. I must be the only conservative blogger on the planet who didn’t talk about Dan Rather and the CBS memos (otherwise known as “Rathergate” to the “Pajahmadeen” . . . if you don’t get that term, you need to go here and here).

Well, rather than comment on the mountains of things that have been happening in the world as of late, here is something special of my own. With apologies to David Letterman . . .

Top Ten Reasons I am Voting for Bush

10. Economy. I’ll admit that my eyes tend to glaze over when politicians and economists start blabbering on about growth percentages and productivity increases and . . . and . . . zzzz . . . er, um. In any case, there is something I think I can add meaningfully to this. The economy, as far as I have read, is growing again. Growing in a very good way. I’m willing to bet that his economic policies have had something to do with this.

9. Taxes. George Bush cut our taxes. Everyone complains about how they don’t like paying taxes. George Bush cut our taxes. Let me repeat: George Bush cut our taxes. Repetitive: yes. Important: yes. John Kerry, on the other hand, has no plans to do so. I can’t possibly believe his “promise” during the second debate to not raise the taxes of the middle class (apparently everyone else is about to get the shaft . . . sorry Teresa). The numbers for his new, proposed spending is somewhere between $2.2-3.2 trillion. I’ve heard/read both numbers. Either way, I’ve also heard/read that his proposed increase in taxes for the rich (>$200,000/year) will accrue about $900 million. Wait, that’s a much smaller number than a couple of trillion dollars. Where is the difference going to come from? Me thinks a problem is at hand . . .

8. Homosexual Marriage. Yes, I don’t think homosexuals should be given government sactioned marriage. And say what you will about him or his stance on the matter, at least he has the guts to stand behind his conviction on this issue. Not like most other politicians, who have almost overwhelmingly declared that they don’t support such a thing, but won’t support any national legislation regarding the issue. “Let the states handle it.” Have you noticed that it’s only when the politicians are scared of something that they actually give authority of an issue back to the states? But I digress.

7. Affirmative Action. Okay, so Bush hasn’t exactly come out against this outmoded system. But, as in the case at the University of Michigan, he at least is standing against quota systems. Good. If we want a truly colorless, we must consider people apart from their race, not because of it. I’m glad we have a President who realizes this.

6. Faith. I’m a sucker for a Christian man. Granted, there are people who will disagree about whether or not his actions (i.e. Iraq) would be considered Christ-like. However, the way he talks about his faith tells me that it has at least some spark of genuineness about it. Could it be a well-coached hoax intended to lure Christians into voting? I doubt it. Until I’m given reason to doubt his faith (something besides “War is wrong/Bush is evil”), I feel I can take him at his word.

Contrast this with Kerry, a man who has said that he has strong faith, but can’t let it dictate his actions as a politician. Huh? What good is a faith that doesn’t change your actions?! Does this man know anything about the faith he claims to have?

5. September 11, 2001. Let Michael Moore and company say what they will. I think the President reacted marvelously to such a catastrophic, defining moment. Yeah, he has had to make some tough decisions since then. At least he has considered them carefully and made them. I’d prefer that over a man who would let our country sit idly by and ignore outside threats.

4. The U.N. I’m glad Bush stood up to these guys. They are not the moral authority for the world. The Oil-For-Food scandal, as well as continued inaction in Sudan, shows it. Why should the U.S. need the approval of such a self-interested group as this in order to act in the best interests of not only the U.S., but the entire world?

3. Afghanistan/Iraq. They harbored terrorists. They posed a threat to the safety of Americans. They broke all the rules. President Bush did what had to be done. And now what do we have? Democracy for people who have not known it . . . ever. Power-mad regimes and dictatorships either dead or imprisoned. Terrorist organizations scattered and struggling for life. Countries likely to find themselves in the crosshairs next disarming and reforming. I’ll gladly vote for a man who made these things happen.

2. Defense. It’s not just about Iraq. Bush has shown that he will not take threats to the U.S. lightly. He has shown that he wants our military to be as strong and well-equipped as possible. He has shown that he won’t just sit and wait around until we get attacked to go after the bad guys.

Again, contrast this with Kerry. He says he will make terrorism a “nuisance?” Like prostitution? First, you ask those people whose lives have been ruined by prostitution, who have been trapped by that lifestyle and can’t get out, whether they consider it a “nuisance.” Next, when was terrorism ever a “nuisance?” These people aren’t smashing mailboxes, painting graffiti, and keying your car. They are plotting to kill as many Americans (and American allies) as possible as often as possible, both at home and abroad. Repeat: They want all of us dead. That is not a nuisance.

1. Life Issues. President Bush stands up against abortion. President Bush encourages adult stem cell research, and has prevented government funding of embryonic stem cell research that would kill more of the innocent unborn. For Christians, I can’t stress enough how important this should be.

Say what you will about Iraq, or anything else. Chide me for being a “single issue” voter. More than forty million abortions in the last thirty years far outweighs any other issue in my mind. The senseless death of that many innocents should be more than enough incentive for anyone who values human life to vote for those who will work to end such slaughter, rather than increase its lifespan.

Well, that’s it. Hope you enjoyed. Until next time!


The system doesn't work

Yeah, yeah, I know. Eighteen days.

Before I get on to the main update, I wanted to add something. Today in my Instrumental Analysis class, the professor says, "The average on the last test was a little high. We'll have to make the next one a bit harder."

Wait, the average was too high? Isn't that what you want to see? Why should you think you did something wrong if people did good on the test?

The educational system seems to suffer from some fundamental flaws.