Thursday, June 28, 2012

Another Day That Will Live in Infamy

By now you have heard that the United States Supreme Court has validated the Constitutionality of Obamacare.  The ruling was a 5-4 vote, with Justice Kennedy, who usually votes with the more liberal side of the Court, voting with the minority, and Chief Justice Roberts, who usually is a strong voice on the conservative side of the Court, voting and writing the majority argument. 

What the Court did in effect was to rewrite the Law so that the individual mandate that everyone have health insurance or pay a penalty - that penalty now becomes a tax.  The Court stated that it was the right of the Congress to pass and collect taxes.  Yet, as you remember, as the Bill was going through the Congress, it was repeated over and over again that the penalty was not a tax.  But now it is a tax. 

What the Court said in its ruling is that the Court did what the Congress refused to do in order to make Obamacare constitutional.  I always grew up believing that it was not the privilege of the Supreme Court to write laws or even to change laws, but to declare whether a law violated the United States Constitution.  The precedent set by the Court today is dangerous.  From now on, the Court can impose on the American people laws that were not passed by the Congress.  In fact, the Supreme Court can make laws - and they are not accountable to the American people.  This could truly be "taxation without representation" - something that began a war back in 1775. posted an editorial written by Karen Harned, the executive director of the National Federation of Independent Business Small Business Legal Center.  Here is what she had to say: "Today marks a sad day in the history of America.  With this decision, Americans have lost the right to be left alone, which Justice William O Douglas once called 'the beginning of all freedom.'  It is painful to recognize that the liberties which our forefathers fought a revolution to secure have been lost.  But it is clear that our original constitutional system has been thrown out, and we are left with only the democratic process to preserve our rights.  That should be a sobering thought for anyone who values liberty."

Ms. Harned continues: "The significance of this decision cannot be overstated.  Our Founding Fathers were greatly concerned that by giving too much power to the federal government, they would be endangering our liberties.  So they sought to restrain the federal government by vesting it with only limited powers.  As James Madison said, the powers of the federal government were to be 'few and defined.'  Yet with this decision, it is clear that the powers of the federal government are no longer limited at all.  Our only remaining protections are with those liberties which were explicitly spelled out in the Bill of Rights, and even those are under assault.  So today Madison's vision of the American Republic has been turned on its head: The powers of the federal government are now broad and uncabined, and the freedoms of the people are few and confined."

She concludes: "We must now look forward, with great trepidation, into this brave new world, a world in which the Constitution has been undone, and federal power knows no limit.  This is a day that our Founders would never have wanted to see. All that they had fought to secure and preserve has been lost."  You can read the article in its entirety by going to 

The City of New York is deciding that they should regulate the size of the soft drinks you can purchase.  Other places are arguing that you must get counseling if you are obese.  Will we soon be mandated that we can only purchase American made automobiles, after all, the government is in the car-business?  If I want to drive a Honda or a Toyota or a Volkswagen I will have to pay a penalty - oops, I meant to say a tax.  And what if I want to cool my home to 68 degrees, will the government come in and order me to set my AC to 78 degrees or I will have to pay that "tax?"

Today we have taken a huge step down the slippery slope toward the implosion that is coming.  I shared with someone today, after hearing the announcement, that Pandora's Box has been fully opened, and now we get to see all the uglies that can crawl out. 

I believe that June 28, 2012 will be one of those dates that will live on in infamy, much like January 22, 1973, or December 7, 1941. 

With 68% of Americans stating that they disliked either all or parts of Obamacare, the question now becomes, "What will they do about it?"  We have heard from the Court.  We have heard from the President.  Now it is time to hear from the people.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Morsi, Putin, and the Weather - What a Combination!

We finally have a declared President in Egypt.  This past Sunday the SCAF (the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces) in Egypt declared that Mohammed Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood candidate, had won the presidential election by a 51.7 to 48.3 percentage margin.  The results echo the margin that the Muslim Brotherhood had declared shortly after the election.  Among the first statements of the new Egyptian President were his desire to strengthen Egyptian relations with Iran so as to "create a balance of pressure in the region."  Morsi also pledged that he would "preserve international accords and obligations" indicating that the 1979 Peace Accords with Israel will remain intact, at least for the time being. 

An immediate roadblock in his pathway is his relationship with the SCAF.  As you remember, even before the presidential elections, the Egyptian Supreme Court dissolved the Egyptian Parliament and the SCAF group of generals assumed major powers.  They have said that they will surrender those powers when Morsi is inaugurated on June 30.  One can only have a wait and see on this one. 

Of course, the election of a Muslim Brotherhood official to the highest office in Egypt did not sit well with many in Egypt.  Christians, Coptics, and secularists are fearful that Morsi will begin the imposition of Islamic Law that will greatly curtail the independence that many in Egypt have enjoyed, especially Christians and women.  And the initial response from Israel was one of coolness.  The Israelis had a strong interest in the outcome of the Egyptian elections.  Now that a Muslim Brotherhood leader is in control, will that give greater power to Hamas, a puppet of both Iran and the Muslim Brotherhood? 

These past two days Russian President Vladimir Putin has been in Israel where he dedicated a monument to the Red Army soldiers who died in World War 2 in their victory over the Nazis.  Included in that number were nearly 120,000 Jewish soldiers out of the more than one millions Jews who served in the Russian army.  This monument is located in Netanya, which is located along the shores of the Mediterranean Sea north of Tel Aviv.  While in Israel Putin had conversations with Israeli President Shimon Peres and Prime Minister Netanyahu.  Topics included the status with Iran and their nuclear ambitions - a program that Russia has helped sponsor in the past, and Syria - with Russia being one of the chief arms suppliers to Syrian President Bashir Assad.  One Israeli editorial stated, "Putin's presence in Israel could serve as a warning to Iran that Moscow could cross the line and become closer to Israel if Iran does not cooperate with the United Nations and open up its nuclear sites for full inspection" (  Probably nothing will come from this State Visit other than media highlights, but once again it demonstrates the worldwide attention being placed upon the Middle East.

Have you noticed the dramatic weather patterns this summer here in the US.  Record breaking drought and heat have America's west literally burning up.  Hundreds of square miles of lands in Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, and California have been consumed by wildfires.  Property damage is being measured in the hundreds of millions of dollars.  And in the SE, tropical storm Debby has left a mountain of rain in Florida, some places receiving nearly two feet of rain.  And the East Coast has received incredible heat these past couple of weeks.  Could it be that God is using the climate to get our attention?  And how we need to listen to what God is saying!

I was reminded the other day of God's promise that He gave to Israel of old: "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, will forgive their sins, and will heal their land" (2 Chronicles 7:14).  Is it still possible that America could experience a Third Great Awakening?  Yes, but only if Christians will wake up to the realities of sin around us, confess our toleration of those sins, often within our own lives, and then come with humility before God to accept His forgiveness.  Could this happen?  Possibly.  Will this happen?  Probably not! 

God bless you this week in your service for the King!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

What a Weekend! What a Week!

There are so many places where I can begin this week's blog.  But let's begin in Egypt where the news is changing almost every hour.  Tomorrow we should know with certainty the outcome of last weekend's presidential elections.  Eleventh hour dramatics even before the voting began included the Egyptian Supreme Court dissolving of Parliament and invalidating the parliamentary elections held earlier this year - elections dominated by the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafist party candidates.  With this dissolution, the effective leadership in Egypt remained in the hands of the military generals who have run the country since the overthrowing of President Mubarak in January 2011.  Both the presidential candidates have declared victory.  The Muslim Brotherhood candidate, Muhammed Morsi, and the the last prime minister under Mubarak, Ahmed Shafiq present different programs for the advancement of Egyptian government.  Fears among many in Egypt remain that Morsi will espouse radical Islamization, including Sharia Law, while others fear that Shafiq will merely become the puppet leader for the SCAF (the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces).  One can foresee that whoever is declared the winner tomorrow, unrest will certainly prevail in Egypt.  And this becomes further enhanced with the news yesterday that the now convicted former President suffered a stroke that has placed him near death.  Real democracy seems yet very distant in the Land of the Pharaohs.

Then there are the results of the elections last weekend in Greece.  The New Conservative Party, which supported the bailout agreement reached with the European Central Bank and the IMF earlier this year, won enough votes to form a ruling coalition.  The fears that Syriza, a leftist party that objected to the bailout and the accompanying severe austerity measures, would win did not materialize, although Syriza did gather seats in the new Parliament.  Yet there is still a great deal of uncertainty in Europe over the situation in Greece.  Will the people fully support the austerity plans that Germany and others place upon them?  Will a coalition government collapse almost as soon as it is formed?  Will Greece leave the Eurozone?  And, furthermore, even as those questions are being asked, the situation in Spain becomes more severe, with the European Central Bank promising $125 billion to stave off default of Spanish loans - at least temporarily.  Europe still sits on the proverbial financial teeter-totter.  World markets will continue to reflect this uncertainty as the Euro seeks to find some solid footing.

Little noted here in the States were the parliamentary elections held last weekend in France.  The results were the Socialists winning control of the French Parliament, thus adding strength to the presidency of Francois Hollande who has said that he would enact measures of "tax and spend" to bring France out of its spiraling financial crisis.  Both houses of the French Parliament are now in the hands of the Socialists, giving free reign for President Hollande.  I wonder if "tax and spend" will work better for the French than it seemingly has worked elsewhere?

I think that takes care of elections - at least for now.  An article from the "ITAR-TASS News Agency" - a Russian paper - dated June 15, featured these headlines: "Black Sea Fleet ships ready to go to Syrian Coast."  They will be sailing to the port of Tartous, the only Russian naval base outside of the former Soviet Union.  Immediately speculation abounded as to the reasons for sending this fleet of ships - including, the armed evacuation of President Assad to Russian exile, the sending of troops to assist the Syrian forces, or the sending of more weapons to Assad.

We do know that the Russians have been deeply involved in Syrian affairs.  The photos coming out of the G-20 Summit in Cabos San Lucas in Mexico of the meeting of President Obama with Russian President Vladimir Putin echo the strain between the two leaders over Syria.  Then, just yesterday, the semi-official Iranian news agency "Fars News" stated that the Russians, Iranian, Chinese, and Syrians were planning "the biggest-ever wargames in the Middle East."  This would involved over 90,000 troops, 400 aircraft, and 1000 tanks that would take place along the Syrian coast within the next month.  The report stated that "Russian atomic submarines and warships, aircraft carriers and mine-clearing destroyers as well as Iranian battleships and submarines will also arrive in Syria and that Egypt has agreed to let 12 Chinese warships cross the Suez Canal for the exercises."  The Syrians immediately announced that the report was false.

As I was reading the story of the Russian-Syrian-Iranian-Chinese wargame plan, my heart was drawn back to the words of the ancient 6th century BC prophet Ezekiel who saw a similar coalition revealed to him by God, recorded in Ezekiel 38-39.  I began to wonder how Ezekiel would respond to the news flashes of today.  I think he would climb up the walls to the watchtower and sound the trumpet as loudly as he knew how.  Danger is imminent.  We need to be ready.  But Ezekiel would also assure us that God was in control, and for that truth, I am more grateful and hopeful - aren't you?

So, friends, don't fall into apathy this summer.  I think it will prove to be among the most exciting we have seen in our lifetimes.  And let your Bible be your guide to understanding what is happening in this world of ours.  That is the only resource that help you to make sense out of it.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Another Interesting Week: From a Queen's Celebration to Locust Swarms

Well it has been another interesting week around the globe.  In Great Britain the Diamond Jubilee Celebration of Queen Elizabeth II's reign came to an end.  And what a celebration it was.  The Queen is now the longest reigning monarch in the world today, and she is just a couple of years away from being the longest reigning monarch in British history - next to Queen Victoria.  If the party the British people gave the Queen is any indication, the party they will be throwing later in July for the Olympics there in London should be fabulous.  The British certainly know how to celebrate in style.

The violence in Syria continues almost unabated.  The fifteen months have seemed longer than that.  Estimates are that nearly 15,000 Syrians have been killed during this war, many of them brutally executed by Assad's military leadership.  Just this past week reports surfaced of another massacre that included many women and children.  Another report indicated that the Syrian military was deliberately using children as human shields during these firefights, thus accounting for the high percentage of deaths of children.  What little value is placed upon life!  I am reminded of how highly Jesus valued children while on earth.  He even rebuked those adults who tried to keep Him from children.  Jesus even went so far as to say that we must become like children if we are to enter into heaven.  There must be great sadness in heaven over the deaths of these innocent boys and girls there in Syria.  (And I won't even get started on those children here in this country who are aborted even before they get to experience life).  Will NATO and/or the United States finally get involved?  But I am now believing that it will take something catastrophic - perhaps even the destruction of the city of Damascus - to remove Assad from power.  Then comes the wonderment of who will fill that vacuum. 

I read an interesting article in the "Financial Times" titled, "Locusts swarm in wake of Libya uprising."  The writer, Xan Rice in Lagos, Nigeria, writes: "The death of Muammar Gaddafi continues to reverberate across Africa - this time in the form of desert locusts.  The Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations warned on Tuesday that croplands in Niger and Mali were at imminent risk from locust swarms moving south from Libya and Algeria.  The revolution in Libya played a major role in allowing the pests to breed, it said.  'The fall of Gaddafi was an enormous factor, to be honest,' said Keith Cressman, FAO senior locus forecasting officer.  'It depleted the Libyans' capacity to monitor and respond as they normally would.'"  Who would have thought that the overthrow of a dictator would cause a crisis with locusts? 

This week Israeli President Shimon Peres is in Washington for talks with the Obama Administration.  The situation in Syria and the latest reports that the Russians have been supplying attack helicopters to the Assad regime will top the list of items for discussion.  But also Peres will relate the status or, I should say, the non-status of negotiations with the Palestinians.  It will be interesting to see how the mainstream media will cover this visit.

Two elections to watch over the upcoming weekend.  First, final round in the election of a new President in Egypt will occur.  Two candidates remain - one, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, howbeit a moderate member, the second a former official in the Mubarak regime.  Polls indicate that it will be a close race, probably giving way to all types of charges of voter fraud.  We may not know the outcome for several weeks.  The second election is in Greece where people will go to the polls for the second time in 6 weeks to elect a new parliament.  Much rides on the results of this election, including the future of the Eurozone.  I have read several reports from analysts who have widely divergent viewpoints on the consequences if Greece were to leave the Eurozone.  Some believe it would be the beginning of the end of the European Union, while others believe it would have little, if any impact.  American markets have been skitish about the Greek affair.

By the way, you know that over the weekend the European Central Bank indicated that it would loan the Spanish government $125 billion to pay its debts - at least temporarily.  Spain now becomes the fourth European nation to be bailed out.  The main source of the funding of the Central Bank comes from the German people, whose economy is among the most robust in all of Europe.  But one wonders how soon the German people will become tired of using their tax dollars to help another.  The problem in Europe today is that nations do not have any regulatory control over their finances.  They cannot print their own money.  They are not accountable to their own banking systems, but to an outside system, namely the Central Bank.  A group of men sitting on the Central Bank board of directors is imposing financial decisions upon the Greeks, for instance.  We must remember that Europeans have generally been very distrustful of each other.  Many are the wars that they have fought among themselves over the course of history.  So, for the Eurozone to have lasted for this long is a miracle in and of itself.  And we know that prophetically Europe will play an important role during the time of the Tribulation.  Therefore one wants to keep a strong eye upon what is happening there.

Well I am on my way to pick up my copy of Joel Rosenberg's newest book.  "Implosion" debuted yesterday.  I am excited to read his perspective on what is happening in our country from a biblical viewpoint.  Later this summer I will write a review of the book and place it on this blogsite.  If this book is anything like "Epicenter" and "Inside the Revolution" I know it will be a book that I can highly recomment. 

We are another week closer to the coming of the Lord Jesus!  This is not a time for rest or retreat, but a time to re-equip ourselves and then to re-charge into the battle for souls.  May we do this well for His honor and glory.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

A Week of History and a Week of the Bizarre

What a week this has been in history.  It is good that one takes a look back once in a while in order to remember lessons that should not be forgotten.  Monday, June 4, was the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Midway.  Although it was early in the war, this victory demonstrated the superiority of American naval forces over those of the Japanese.  Perhaps this weekend might be a good time to revisit that battle by renting "Midway" starring Charlton Heston.  It truly is a classic.

Then today, June 6, marks the 69th anniversary of the D-Day invasion by Allied Forces on the beaches of Normandy, France.  What a horrific scene there upon those beaches as thousands of young lives were lost, yet the beaches were breached, the cliffs successfully assaulted, and the tide of Nazism began to be turned back.  It would take another 11 months for the war to be ended, but June 6 marked the beginning of its end.  Steven Spielberg, in his film "The Saving of Private Ryan," includes a dramatic re-creation of those scenes on the beaches. 

Tomorrow, June 7, will make the 45th anniversary of the recapturing of Jerusalem during the Six-Day War.  Commandos, under the leadership of General Moshe Dyan, fought their way street by street through the Old City until they reached the Western Wall, the most holy place in Judaism.  Who can forget those images of that day.  They will be forever etched upon the memories of Israelis.  It was then that the promise was made that Jerusalem would never be divided again - and it has not been for these 45 years.  If you would like to read a thrilling account of those days, I would encourage you to read "The Six Day War" written by Michael Oren, who is presently serving as the Israeli Ambassador to the United States. 

Well, so much for history.  Let's see what is happening in our world today.  Those of you who are living in Wisconsin are celebrating truly a remarkable victory in the recall of Governor Scott Walker.  The grassroots within that state have spoken that they want government to exercise more care in how public funds - really, our funds as the taxpayers - are being spent.  Hopefully other states and local leaders will sit up and take notice.  Will this outcome in Wisconsin yesterday be a bell-weather for the fall election?  I would be hesitant to make any call on that, at least not right now.

Last Friday the "New York Daily News" published an article by Meghan Neal titled, "Human barcode could make society more organized, but invades privacy, civil liberties."  The author wrote: "Science fiction author Elizabeth Moon last week rekindled the debate on whether it's a good idea to 'barcode' infants at birth in an interview on a BBC radio program.  'I would insist on every individual having a unique ID permanently attached - a barcode if you will - an implanted chip to provide an easy, fast inexpensive way to identify individuals,' she said on The Forum, a weekly show that features 'a global thinking' discussing a 'radical, inspiring or controversial idea' for 60 seconds."  As I read this article I was reminded of something I read in Revelation.  You might also remember that in Revelation 13, the Antichrist will demand that everyone who desires to do commerce, in other words, those who wish to live, must have his mark upon their foreheads and right hands.  Could this be something like a barcode?  Quite possibly.  It seems that everything has a barcode these days. 

Speaking of Revelation, on Sunday reported on an invasion of venomous spiders into a town in the Assam province of India.  Two people died and scores of others were severely bitten by these spiders.  What has authorities intrigued is that this particular province has no record of having venomous spiders - these are not native there.  So, from where did they come?  That is the unanswerable question.  But, as I read the article I was reminded of those demonic locusts that appear in Revelation 9 and torment mankind for 5 months.  It seems that we are hearing of increased evidence of some rather bizarre things happening in the natural world. Could it be that God is trying to get our attention?  How carefully are we listening?

Finally, yesterday WND reported a story that could have dramatic consequences for believers within the business community.  "A ruling from Judge Tim L. Garcia in the New Mexico Court of Appeals says states can require Christians to violate their faith in order to do business, affirming a penalty of nearly $7000 for a photographer who refused to take pictures at a lesbian 'commitment' ceremony in the state were same-sex 'marriage' was illegal.  Judge's Cynthia Fry and James Wechsler joined in the ruling by Garcia, which involved Elane Photography, whose owners, Elaine and Jonathan Huegeunin, are Christians and declined to do photography for lesbians Vanessa Willock and another woman.  The women complained under the state's anti-discrimination requirements and a state commission, the New Mexico Human Rights Commission, imposed the penalty. ... The judges explained in the 45-page ruling that the photography company is a 'public accommodation' and those cannot discriminate under state law based on 'sexual orientation.'  'The owners of Elane Photography must accept the reasonable regulations and restrictions imposed upon the conduct of their commercial enterprise despite their personal religious beliefs that may conflict with these governmental interests,' the judges wrote.'  Wow!  Could this be the beginning of what we know is coming?  Will the government truly regulate our very businesses as Christians.  Where is that line that can be drawn in the sand?  Friends, I have been saying that persecution is near at hand.  We do need to be prepared!

Friends, aren't you glad that the Lord is coming?  What a precious hope we cling to!