Reflection on Plumb

Measuring the world against the Word of God

Is Giving Always Good?
3 Dec 2013

Is Giving Always Good?

The Bible tells us over and over to give to the poor. But we need to ask ourselves, are we giving in a Christian way or have me made a mockery of charity? Read more...

Three Kinds of Poor
19 Nov 2013

Three Kinds of Poor

There are three kinds of poor in the world: those who can't help themselves, those who are down on their luck, and those who won't help themselves. Since a Christian should be able to discern between the three and help accordingly, this post serves to provide a simple definition. Read more...

Taxes Are Not Charity
4 Nov 2013

Taxes Are Not Charity

There’s a lot of discussion about helping the poor through government programs. We’re told, if you’re a Christian you will support helping the poor through welfare, and if you don’t, you aren’t a real Christian. While I understand the argument, it’s never sat well with me. I think that’s because it doesn’t take the discussion deep enough. It’s a surface argument, a jab, for one group of people to get another group of people to feel bad for their position. Read more...

2 Sep 2013

Do You Want To Know What the Constitution Says About Religion?

There is a lot of misunderstanding, and misinformation, regarding the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, the Founding Fathers, liberty, and Freedom of Religion. Hillsdale College has been offering online courses that explain the vision of the Founders, the vision of the Liberals and Progressives, and where we are today versus where we began.

If the government is standing in the way of your relationship with God, it is standing in the way of the most important aspect of your life. You need to understand that, and you need to educate yourself. These courses should be important to anyone who cherishes their freedom to practice their religion as they see fit, free from government interference. In these courses they explain how our government is supposed to work; how it is supposed to support your ability to pursue God as you see fit. While the government is indeed prohibited from establishing a national religion, the vision of the Founding Fathers was that government would promote religion, because pious people are more likely to do what is right, after all, they are held to a standard/law even higher than that of the government. See the Ten Commandments!

While these courses have been available for a while, I finally took the second course, Constitution 201. I had finished 101 last year when it first came out. While I highlight the topic of Freedom of Religion (after all, this is a Christian blog), it is not the only topic. These courses also discuss the Civil War, welfare, freedom of speech, civil rights, and more. The courses are free, and the reading materials are available online for free. Each course is 10 parts with a lecture video of approximately 40 minutes, and a 20 minute Q&A video. There are links for easy access to the readings. Each section has a quiz, and there is a final test. Once you pass the final test, they will send you a very nice certificate.

Economics 101 is the newest course starting in about 3 weeks, so that’s what’s advertised on the home page. You’ll have to sign up to get access to the Constitution courses. Hillsdale does ask for donations, but it is more important to them to education people on these subjects, so you can take the courses even if you can’t provide a donation.

If you’re like me, you’ll be surprised at what the Founders had envisioned for our country, and angered at where it’s at. If you’re like me, maybe you’ll want to share this link with everyone you know.

http://online.hillsdale.edu/home

1 Sep 2013

The Deeper Journey

Frank Viola writes one of my favorite Christian blogs on the ‘net. It’s called The Deeper Journey. Recently, he’s written a couple of posts that I think you should check out: Bono On Jesus and Rick Warren’s Horrific Tragedy & The Sickening Response of Some “Christians”.

1 May 2013

God's Favorite Place On Earth

Frank Viola’s new book, God’s Favorite Place on Earth, has just released. If you get the book between May 1st to May 7th, you will also receive 25 FREE books from over 15 different authors.

Click GodsFavoritePlace.com to ordering information and easy instructions on how to get your 25 free books.

Cover of God's Favorite Place On Earth

My Thoughts

I received a free copy of God’s Favorite Place On Earth about a week ago in return for creating a post advertising the book’s release date of 1 May. This is the first book I’ve read by Frank Viola, and before I received it I didn’t know what to expect. To put it simply, it’s been a long time since I’ve read a book that challenged me, yet was a joy to read.

In Matthew 7:5, Jesus said, “first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye” (ESV).

How often do you examine the log in our own eye? We’re good at complaining about others, and finding faults in others, but do you remember the last time you really took inventory of yourself?

God’s Favorite Place On Earth takes you to the town of Bethany and brings it to life. It’s a trip that takes you back 2000 years so you have an idea of what life was like, and it is there, on their turf, that you meet Jesus, His friends, and His enemies. It is through their lives, their faults, and their strengths, that Frank Viola paints the picture of Christian discipleship, and you can’t help but ask yourself, is this the way I act? But, as you ask that question, you also find the hope of pulling the log from your eye, or at least begin to recognize its presence.

This is a book that every Christian should read. It realigns ourself with our self, and it realigns our relationships with Jesus.

17 Apr 2013

A Left-Wing Extremist and a Right-Wing Extremist In Boston

Headlines you may see:

  • Right-wing, Anti-tax, Anti-Government Extremist Detonates Bombs In Opposition to U.S. Tax Day!

  • Left-wing, Anti-Patriot, Anti-Tea Party Extremist Detonates Bombs In Opposition to Boston’s Patriot’s Day!

  • Radical Islamist Detonates Bombs In Opposition to U.S. Existence!

  • Left-wing, Pro-Choice, Extremist Detonates Bombs to Distract Media From Gosnell Trial.

Headline you won’t see:

  • Two Bombs Were Detonated Near the Finish Line of the Boston Marathon. Motive is Irrelevant.

I believe this was an act of terrorism. I don’t know that it was of Islamic makings, but the ideology behind the act remains the same. Unless this was simply someone looking for maximum bloodshed, as in the case of Sandy Hook, this was done for attention. The kind of attention that fear and bloodshed brings: an act of terrorism. There’s a message that someone want to send.

I am a firm believer that every individual is endowed by our Creator with a right to life, to liberty, and to pursue their own definition of happiness. It is not the role of government to infringe on these, but to protect them. One of the ways they do this is by protecting the freedom of everyone’s speech. While there are a couple of common sense restrictions, such as not allowing some to yell “Fire!” in a crowded theater, generally the government should avoid setting limits, and treat exceptions on a case by case basis. For example, should yelling “Fire!” in the same theater be a crime when there are only six individuals watching the film?

Freedom of speech is the right of every individual in this country, no matter what message they’re carrying. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a left-wing wacko or a right-wing wacko—and yes, both sides have their wackos. It matters not whether the message comes from Evangelical Christians; LGBT organizations; the KKK; climate change deniers; climate change activists; pro-Democrat, pro-Republican, or pro-Tea Party Super PACS; Occupy Wall Street and it’s related movements… It doesn’t matter what their message is, they have the right to say it. And if you’re offended? Too bad. I’m frequently offended, but I’m sure no one would want to hear about it, and quite frankly, I’m not going to burden you with it. What’s more, when I’m offended by someone, I usually don’t want to engage that person in conversation, and I really don’t care to hear any more from them. In other words, I walk away, change the channel, or close the web page.

Yesterday, two bombs were detonated near the finish line of a prestigious marathon in Boston. People died. People were injured. Presumably, the person or group of people responsible for the bombs have a reason for doing so. Maybe not. As I said, it could have been someone just looking to shed innocent blood. It doesn’t matter. The incident it offensive. Unlike, the “damage” resulting from offensive words, people have been deprived of life, certain liberties through the loss of limbs, and certainly property in terms of hospitable bills. And this only accounts for the physical damage; imagine pursuing happiness after this.

In a society that claims to seek justice, while being fair, it only makes sense that the perpetrators should lose certain liberties. One can argue the appropriateness of capital punishment versus life rotting in a prison, but one liberty that we don’t talk about removing is the freedom of speech. It seems to me, that the greatest punishment one could place on an individual obviously trying to get a message across, is to not allow that message to be delivered.

We’re a nation obsessed with “Why?” But, let’s forget about why. Who cares what the motive was? In fact, the motive should be ignored and discounted. It should be irrelevant. Let the facts stand for themselves, prosecute, prove the individual(s) at fault, and punish accordingly.

The media should refuse to print the reason. The American public should refuse to learn it. We need to walk away, change the channel, and close the web page. The people of this country need to band together with a collective attitude that says: “You have murdered and maimed our neighbors and loved ones. No message is worth that price, and we don’t care what you have to say. We will see to it that you take your message to the grave.”

Same Sex Marriage Is Not About Equality
5 Apr 2013

Same Sex Marriage Is Not About Equality

The claim is that same-sex marriage is about equality, but the marriage laws already treat everyone equally regardless of gender or sexuality, so it must be about something else. Read more...

Left Pushes Anti-Human Policies; Surprised When Gunman Shoots Up School
15 Jan 2013

Left Pushes Anti-Human Policies; Surprised When Gunman Shoots Up School

The left pushes all kinds of policies that are basically anti-human like animal rights, abortion, evolution, gun control, global warming, and then are surprised and outraged when acts of violence are committed against humans. Read more...

Gun Control Has Failed, Again
15 Dec 2012

Gun Control Has Failed, Again

On Friday, 26 people were murdered; 20 of which were children. I have no idea what those children look like yet, but I am continually saddened as I think of what their faces may have looked like; eyes wide with fear, crying, begging… I wonder what the shooter was thinking as he looked into each little terror-stricken face. And pulled the trigger. And then did it again. And again. Until 20 children lay dead. Read more...

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