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Newsletter for Dec. 3, 2008

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  • American News
    American News Commentary  *Originally Published as EPOCH Commentary*   - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Vol. 11, No. 23  
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 3, 2008
      News Commentary
       *Originally Published as EPOCH Commentary*  
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      Vol. 11, No. 23    December 3, 2008     © 2008
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      ON SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 30, the Season of
      Advent officially began, and so we have changed
      the color of our title to the traditional purple which
      signifies the royal nature of the King to be born. So
      our commentary will focus as much on the spiritual
      side of life as on the secular -- or in these days of
      conflict, the political. As always we welcome your 
      email messages: american_news_2008@...
      In each issue of this commentary since election day,
      we have urged Christians to pray for president-elect
      Obama, even though the Electoral College has not
      yet voted to make that title actually correct.
      And each week we receive email messages from
      our readers saying that they are finding it difficult to
      pray sincerely for Mr. Obama. Various reasons
      have been explained in those messages, including
      his Muslim background, and expressing concern
      over his middle name: Hussein; the fact that he has
      kept so much of his life a secret, such as where he
      was born - we don't even know if he is a native-
      born American citizen -- and how he could have
      remained associated for so many with that strange
      minister who publicly cursed America and continue
      to look to him as his pastor and advisor.
      Those are just a few of the concerns which have
      been expressed to us, and we certainly do not
      criticize our readers for openly sharing their
      concerns with us. We continue to urge Christians
      to pray that God will direct Mr. Obama and give
      him wisdom and strength to do right and stand up 
      against the anti-American, anti-Christian influences
      which will confront him as he assumes the office of
      President of the United States of America, a nation
      whose motto is "In God We Trust." 
      Oh, and did you hear the news? The official
      report from the financial powers-that-be is that we
      have been in a recession as of December, 2007. If
      you had thought that was the case, now you can be
      reassured that your perception was correct. It isn't
      an illusion . . . it's real.
      This headline said it well: "Mumbai Siege Ends
      as Last Terrorist Killed"
      Last week's burning and murder spree in Mumbai
      (Bombay) has been labeled as "India's 9/11." And
      there is some reason to believe that both attacks
      may have been planned by the same Islamic master
      mind. India has taken the position that Pakistan was
      responsible, bringing the two nuclear armed nations,
      one Muslim, the other Hindu, to the brink of open
      warfare, which could be the start of World War III..
      It may take some time before the exact nature of
      the attackers becomes definite. They appear to have
      been Islamists located and trained somewhere in
      Pakistan. The Pakistan government denies any direct
      involvement. This we know -- the 10 terrorists who
      carried out the attack deliberately targeted civilians,
      torturing and killing nearly 200 (including at least 6
      Americans), and injuring hundreds more. In the
      process they did great damage to the city of
      Mumbai, and seriously interrupted the ongoing
      business of India's financial center.  It was a further
      demonstration of radical Muslims' self-declared
      war on civilization, with America and Israel as their
      principal targets. Those 10 young men captured the
      total attention of world-wide press and TV coverage.
      They created a goal and a challenge for future
      Jihadists to meet and surpass.
      As Gary Bauer pointed out in "End of Day," Dec.
      1, "The jihadists who are attacking civilization are
      educated in madrasses – Islamic religious schools.
      They cite the Koran as their authority. They follow
      the teachings of Muslim imams worldwide ... who
      issue “fatwas,” ... justifying the murder of infidels
      ...They praise “Allah” as they kill and die."
      The skill with which the Mumbai attacks were
      conducted raises a valid fear of similar attacks on
      major cities in America. The headline above was in
      error; one of the terrorists was captured alive. His
      revelations during interrogation do little to alleviate
      that fear. One hopes the incoming administration
      which will have to face the possibility of any such
      attacks understands that diplomacy and negotiation
      have little meaning to these terrorists.
      Civilized nations throughout the world are united
      in their condemnation of these terrorist tactics.. And
      from the religious front there have come similar
      reactions -- from the World Council of Churches
      (WCC) General Secretary, Samuel Kobia, who
      said he was "deeply shocked and saddened" --
      adding, "We believe that there can be no
      justification whatsoever for such despicable acts
      of terrorism and indiscriminate violence."  And
      from the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams,
      who expressed his "shock and outrage at the
      appalling atrocities in Mumbai," and wrote to the
      High Commissioner of India, "People everywhere 
      stand in solidarity with the innocent and in
      condemnation of those who would destroy
      innocent lives out of  evil and misguided motives."
      And yet these two religious leaders were among
      those who welcomed the letter from the Islamic
      scholars, and who urged their followers to join in
      the Yale Divinity School concession to the Islamists'
      position that we all worship the same God. Now
      suddenly they are shocked at this further display of
      torture and the killing of innocent people -- infidels--
      by the Jihadists.
      From President Thomas Jefferson: "Can the
      liberties of a nation be thought secure when we
      have removed their only firm basis, a conviction
      in the minds of the people that these liberties are
      the gift of God?  ...  The reason that Christianity
      is the best friend of Government is because
      Christianity is the only religion that changes the
      heart."  (During his presidency, 1801-1809)
      Some Random Afterthoughts . . .
      Oooops -- we erred! In last week's issue we
      reported on Bob Jones University's apology for its
      long established racial policies. But we interchanged
      the dates when the policies were abandoned. Some
      of our readers pointed out the error. and we are
      happy to correct it:  the ban on admission of blacks
      ended in 1971, and the ban on inter-racial dating
      ended in 2000.
      The "Invisible Man" returns to sight. Portrayed
      as "average Joe," the Democrat answer to Joe, the
      plumber, Joe Biden had bragged about being a lunch-
      bucket Democrat with working class roots, but then
      dropped from sight after the election. But on the eve
      of Thanksgiving Day he proved he knows how to
      party like the Kennedys. With his family he ferried
      from Cape Cod over to Nantucket Island where
      he had rented a $4 million house for the weekend.
      He told the local newspaper that this has been their
      traditional Thanksgiving get-away for over 30 years. 
      He may be out of sight as vice president, but is the
      center of attention among the elite habitués of
      Nantucket Island.
      Some campaign promises are not forgotten:
      President-elect Obama has moved quickly to name
      homosexual activists to positions within his proposed
      administration. Politico.com reports that 10 national
      homosexual organizations are working with the
      Obama transition team, helping to get more openly
      homosexuals appointed to positions in the Obama
      administration.  Obama's transition team has also
      reportedly named at least seven openly homosexuals
      to panels assigned to review federal departments
      and agencies. Matt Barber, director of cultural affairs
      with Liberty Counsel and Liberty Alliance Action,
      says that Obama is keeping his promises to the
      homosexual lobby; "It's not surprising that he has
      now allowed some of these radical activists to
      become part of his administration."  Should we, as
      Christians, be concerned? Most certainly.
      While many segments of the economy are
      clearly ailing, at least the Obama memorabilia
      business is actually booming. One example:
      CafePress.com offers thousands of Obama-related
      designs for sale. A search of eBay discloses more
      than 21,000 Obama items to choose from. Many
      are the usual T-shirts, coffee mugs, ball point pens,
      caps, buttons and pins, etc. It has to be said that
      the French are much more innovative: there voodoo
      dolls representing President Sarkozy are available,
      including a pin with which to stab the doll and cause
      pain for the president. Let's leave that one for the
      French to enjoy.
      The Founding Fathers' view of human nature:
      "Human nature itself is evermore an advocate
      for liberty. There is also in human nature a
      resentment of injury, and indignation against
      wrong. A love of truth and a veneration of
      virtue. These amiable passions, are the "latent
      spark"... If the people are capable of under-
      standing, seeing and feeling the differences
      between true and false, right and wrong, virtue
      and vice, to what better principle can the friends
      of mankind apply than to the sense of this
      difference?" - John Adams, 1775
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