Monthly Archives: February 2015

Family Size & Government Lies

Reading What We Lose With Only Two Children Per Family by , we learn that there are real consequences when family size is reduced from four+ to two.

The first issue is that a smaller family means a bigger State, as the government steps in to care for the aged (with ‘care for’ redefined as ‘killing’, when the money runs out.) The obverse is naturally true: a bigger family means a smaller State. (And more ways to resist the Saviour-State as well.)

The second issue is that a bigger family means a bigger family network, and more ways for family to help family… instead of crying out to Our Masters.

When my wife and I brought each of our three children into the world, we were well aware that we were giving the gift of a brother or sister to our other children. At the time, however, I did not fully appreciate how much the gift was multiplied. Each of our children was a gift of a niece or nephew twelve times over, and the gift of a cousin sixteen times over.

The family is most local of all communities, and its decline is at least as great a social calamity as the commercialization of culture and the state organization of society. In the case of the family, at least, it is in our power to effect something of a restoration.

[…]

When you have another child, you fill out the tree, and help restore the culture.

After salvation, what is the number one way for the average man to both exalt God, and pour contempt on His enemies? What is the best way for Christians to infuriate their enemies?

Get and keep a job (or better, your own profitable business), get married, have many children, and rigorously teach them all to obey God’s Law-Word continuously, by word and deed, when you rise up, and when you sit down.

And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.
 – Deuteronomy 6:7

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St. Ambrose, and Serious Christianity in Politics

From Steve Macias

Contemporary with the fourth century councils, St. Ambrose rose to the rank of Roman governor over the region of Liguria and Emelia. Titled the “Consular Prefect” Ambrose was headquartered in Milan, the functional capital of the western Roman empire. In such an influential seat, Ambrose had the attention and recognition of the emperors.

St. Ambrose the Proto-Kuyperian

The cornerstone of the Kuyperian worldview is the principle of sphere sovereignty, the idea that God has ordained the institutions around us (e.g. Church, State, Family) and given them limited authority and responsibilities. These spheres work together like cogwheels as God expresses his will through the created order. Ambrose himself set many of the sphere boundaries that will later be embraced by Kuyperian systems.

During Ambrose’s tenure as governor, Milan’s episcopal seat was maintained by an Arian Bishop. When he died, both factions of the Church sought to place their own man in the vacant seat. Recognizing that his place was a servant of the public, not a member of the clergy, Ambrose refused to take a side. Instead he made a plea for peace between the two parties and urged the people of Milan to choose a new bishop without violence. While Ambrose could have easily called down the power of the state to squash Arianism, he recognized that such an act would have been outside his office’s legitimate authority and purpose.

The people of Milan then did the unthinkable – they demanded the unbaptized Roman governor as their new Bishop. Ambrose fled to plead with the Emperor for any excuse out from under the miter. Having no imperial sympathies, Ambrose was baptized and finally succumbed to episcopal consecration on this day (December 7) in 375 AD.

Continuing in the proto-kuyperian theme, Ambrose recognized that in this new sphere of the state, his worldly titles and wealth would be an hindrance to the proper function as the overseer of Milan. Ambrose disposed of his worldly wealth by giving it to the poor and the church. All his silver and gold, his lands and estates were given away as he sought to focus himself on the ministry. Overnight, the once powerful Roman governor becomes Victor Hugo’s “Monseigneur Bienvenu.” His consistency alone is worthy of our admiration.

I advise you not to hold your breath, waiting for today’s “Christian conservatives” to behave in a similar fashion.

[…]

[Emperor Valentinian II demanded that Ambrose be tolerant of the heretical Arians. Ambrose responds by having his parishioners barricade themselves inside the basillica until the order is rescinded.] Ambrose continues to maintain sovereignty of the church refusing to bow to the state’s demands of religious tolerance.

Tolerance for evil, for any way other than Christ, is not permitted for a believer. It is to be completely rejected from the Church. Public wickedness is to be suppressed by the State as well (it being a minister of God), with its powers and authority determined by the Old & New Testament instead of self-serving state bureaucrats, leaders, and bought-and-paid-for intellectuals & the media establishment.)

[…]

Ambrose’s civil disobedience is most famous in his excommunication of Emperor Theodosius, who oversaw the brutal massacre of 7,000 people in the city of Thessalonica. Ambrose refused the emperor access to the Lord’s table and demanded repentance. Ambrose is said to have met Theodosius at the door of the Church and said,

“It seems, sir, that you do not yet rightly apprehend the enormity of the massacre lately committed. Let not the splendour of your purple robes hinder you from being acquainted with the infirmities of that body which they cover. You are of the same mould with those subjects which you govern; and there is one common Lord and Emperor of the world. With what eyes will you behold his temple? With what feet will you tread his sanctuary? How will you lift up to him in prayer those hands which are still stained with blood unjustly spilt? Depart, therefore, and attempt not, by a second offence, to aggravate your former crime; but quietly take the yoke upon you which the Lord has appointed for you. It is sharp, but it is medicinal and conducive to your health.”  (Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73).  Volume XII: December. The Lives of the Saints.  1866.)

Ambrose gives the emperor eight months of penance, which he submits to from his palace.

Ambrose was serious when it came to obedience to God. We should be too.

(And note: not a drop of Republican warmongering!)

Natural Law, as an Indicator of Divine Character

Is God a poor explanation for the laws of Nature?

Professor Coyne also argues that “God made them that way” is a very poor explanation for why the laws of Nature hold constant. But here he is construing laws as mere whims of the Almighty. That is not the view that I am espousing here. In order to see why any scientific account of laws is too thin to provide a warrant for induction about future events, consider the following question: are the laws of Nature merely descriptive statements about how the universe happens to work, or are they prescriptive statements about how things should behave? The problem here is that as Hume observed, one cannot derive an “ought” from an “is”: hence if laws are mere descriptions of how Nature works, they cannot tell scientists what they should expect to observe in the future. But if, on the other hand, we say that laws are prescriptions about how things should behave, then we have implicitly acknowledged the existence of a Cosmic Prescriber. (After all, things cannot tell themselves how they ought to act.) In other words, the prescriptive view of laws – which is the only one that can ground inductive inferences – implies the existence of a Divine Lawmaker.

Reviewing the above paragraph carefully, you’ll see that the very fact that we can make scientific predictions about the future means that the natural laws are not mere descriptions, but must be proscriptions.

Check out the original article, Why atheists can’t show that Ken Ham is wrong, for a more complete discussion of the philosophical issues regarding God, natural laws, and science.

Archeology: The Destruction of Sodom & Gomorrah

An interesting review of the archeological evidence for the destruction of Sodom & Gomorrah, complete with skeletons lying in the ashes.

One thing the article reminded me is that there was an attack on Sodom by other local kings, about 25 years before the final destruction. Abraham was there to rescue his nephew Lot, and save the Sodomite government. But I wonder if that initial defeat of Sodom – and it’s rescue by a godly man – was a warning, a kind of ‘last call’ to repentance by God.


In any case, I am confident that today’s Establishment would pour its utmost contempt on any Divine call to repentance. Which means that God’s people will have to get ready, to repopulate an uninhabited land.

As an example, London – a city which now has a minority white population, white the rest of the nation likely following by the end of this century – is now the most Christian part of Britain. I suspect that much the same is true in Paris and the rest of the West.

Obviously, it won’t be the sodomites who will inherit the earth, but the believers. Those Whites who hold on to Christ will be rewarded and blessed with survival, and perhaps even prosperity and their own land… but they would have inherited a lot more, and even kept their nations, if their forefathers had avoided this perverse detour to sterility, delusion, and death.

A detour, and a dead end, that highly educated White Europeans were driven to by their hatred of Christ. “Those who hate me love death,” said the Lord thy God…

Addendum: There is a Biblical principle, disinheritance. Basically, those who love God keep the land and grow in wealth and repespect, while those who hate God are impoverished, despised, driven out of their land, and/or are placed under the heel of their enemies. I find it odd that Biblical principles are openly loathed, even as they play out right before our eyes…

As for fire from the sky… there is no need for it, when the unborn children of those who despise God are left screaming in pain from saltine solutions, or torn to pieces by the mercy, the tender mercy, of not only rationalists & atheists, but also by Christians – disgusting and damned Christian apostates along the lines of Judas Iscariot and other hardened traitors to Christ the King.

For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,

And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come,

If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.

For the earth which drinketh in the rain that cometh oft upon it, and bringeth forth herbs meet for them by whom it is dressed, receiveth blessing from God:

But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned.

– Hebrews 6: 4-8.

Sure, the children of the wicked are cut off: but it’s passing strange, that they are cut off not by fire from heaven, but by the quiet and lethal malice of the wicked themselves!

Lesson learned: The wrath of God is not only terrifying: it can be far more subtle than you think. Fear Him!

Christians and Science

A fine article from Stephen Rees on Christians and Science was published by Banner of Truth.

He notes the general claimed hostility the anti-Christian mob has:

They all know it’s true. Christianity has been the great hindrance to science. And what proof do these online experts offer for their assertions? Well, it’s always the same – Galileo!

 

But it isn’t enough to attack the Catholics who actually attacked Galileo (rather mildly, if you look at the records – and primarily because Galileo challenged Aristotle, a pagan philosopher the Catholic Church exalted), they have to drag the Puritans in it as well.

[They] also talks about ‘every Protestant church before 1800′ and their bitter opposition to Galileo. Well, I have read quite a few Protestant writers from that era. Take Richard Baxter, next to Bunyan the greatest and most popular of English Puritan writers. In the closing paragraphs of his vast Christian Directory (1665) Baxter muses on the pleasures of life such as

making discoveries of some mysterious excellencies in arts and sciences . . . What delight had the inventors of the sea-chart and magnetic attraction, and of printing, and of guns, in their inventions! What pleasure had Galileo in his telescopes, in finding out the inequalities and shady parts of the moon, the Medicean planets, the adjuncts of Saturn, the changes of Venus, the stars of the Milky Way, &c . . .

Does that sound as if Baxter was in ‘bitter opposition’ to Galileo and his researches?

Baxter was not alone among the Puritans in admiring Galileo and endorsing his work. The position that first Copernicus and then Galileo argued for and the Roman Catholic Church condemned – that the earth moved around the sun – was upheld by a string of prominent Puritan scholars. R. Hooykaas in his book Religion and the Rise of Modern Science lists a whole string of pioneering scientists in England who were forthright and fervent Puritans and who were convinced followers of Copernicus and Galileo.

Mt. Rees continues with a brief discussion of Sir Thomas Gresham, John Wilkins (Oliver Cromwell’s brother-in-law), and that

it is estimated that 62% of the members of the Royal Society in 1663 were Puritan in outlook.

Whatever the truth about the Roman Catholic Church, it would seem absurd to suggest that Protestants in England were hostile to science. The Puritans were the most consistent of English Protestants – and they were at the forefront of scientific progress in 17th century England.

I think that the sophisticated leadership of our intelligentsia would reply ‘don’t confuse me with the facts: my mind is made up!’

And then there is Calvin himself, who wrote:

Both the heavens and the earth present us with innumerable proofs: not only those more recondite proofs which astronomy, medicine, and all the natural sciences are designed to illustrate, but proofs which force themselves on the notice of the most illiterate peasant, who cannot open his eyes without beholding them. It is true, indeed, that those who are more or less intimately acquainted with those liberal studies are thereby assisted and enabled to obtain a deeper insight into the secret workings of divine wisdom . . . To investigate the motions of the heavenly bodies, to determine their positions, measure their distances, and ascertain their properties, demands skill, and a more careful examination; and where these are so employed, as the Providence of God is thereby more fully unfolded, so it is reasonable to suppose that the mind takes a loftier flight, and obtains brighter views of his glory . . . The same is true in regard to the structure of the human frame. To determine the connection of its parts, its symmetry and beauty, with the skill of a Galen requires singular acuteness; and yet all men acknowledge that the human body bears on its face such proofs of ingenious contrivance as are sufficient to proclaim the admirable wisdom of its Maker . . . (Institutes Book 1, chapter 5).


But all of the above is tied to the media-driven controversies of the day: a phenomenon that is tied to the secularist university, handmaid of the secularist state – both of which will drown in the onrushing tide of red ink, uncontrolled information, and the end of the current Establishment’s power structure over the coming decades.

It is needful to reveal lies for what they are, and I’m thankful for Reess’ work here: but of greater interest to me is his creation of a clear, well-structured thought to guide Christian believers as they push on to further expand human understanding and dominion, as commanded by God.

I have always focused on the following logic structure in my own thoughts:

  • God made an orderly universe;
  • God wants us to have dominion over it, use it, and nurture it;
  • God gave us the minds and the desire to use it and to use it well (with His Word defining ‘well’, rather than following the definitions of powerful, self-serving men);
  • We glorify God more, the more we understand the complexity and wonder of Creation;
  • We can heal the Creation of its flaws and dangers, and help it recover from the corruption we (through Adam) inflicted on her.

Stephen Rees provides a better outline in understanding the Creation, picking up parts and aspects that I have missed:

No. 1. God the Creator has made the world orderly and predictable

No. 2. Christians should study God’s works for his glory and their delight

No. 3. Mankind was created to investigate, subdue, and rule creation

No. 4. Christians should seek to relieve the suffering of others

No. 5. Manual work is honourable

Rees expands on each of these points in a forthright and intelligent manner, that’s worth reading up on.

And even better is the writer’s ending:

Giving thanks to God

Every one of us today benefits from the extraordinary achievements of scientists over the past four hundred or so years. We live in houses that are warm in winter and cool in summer. We eat plentiful and safe food. We go to the doctor and are supplied with medicines that work. I sit at a computer, press keys, and send messages to people across the world. I wear vari-focal glasses – without them the world would be a blur to me.

We must never take those things for granted. Atheists, ignorant of history, may say that all this is just natural progress – evidence of Man’s capacity to overcome all obstacles. But the explosion of scientific knowledge in the Western world did not come about by some inevitable law of development. It came about because God in his grace set people reading the Bible and discovering the truth about himself and his world. Modern science was not born in Africa, or Australia, or India, or China. As one writer puts it, ‘only one civilization developed a self-sustaining modern science’ – and that civilization was a civilization shaped by fifteen hundred years of Christendom, and then purified by the Reformation.

We owe thanks to God. And let’s not forget to honour those Christian men and women whom God has called to serve him and the world as scientists. Let’s pray that in their work they’ll bring glory to God and good to mankind. We’re horrified by some of the ways that science is misused today. Science cut off from the fear of God can become a terrible weapon for evil. But we thank God that there are still godly believers who pursue science out of love for God and compassion for the world. May God strengthen their hand.

Every blessing to you all,

Stephen

Something worth chewing on, as we

  • ready our people for the end of our morally & financially bankrupt culture,
  • determine how to regain lost ground,
  • and push on to the holy goal: universal righteousness, compassion, wisdom, prosperity, and peace, ‘as the waters cover the earth’.

Christus Victor!

No evidence for God’s existence, you say?

A very nice article from Uncommon Descent, No evidence for God’s existence, you say? A response to Larry Moran, covers the current high points in Intelligent Design arguments for God.

While all of these points are worth reviewing, I’d like to make a special note of the flying saint incident.

(Catholic, of course. Calvinists are too rationalistic – too unbelieving? – to ever fly, powered solely by the power of faith. Jesus Christ, on the other hand…)

The article writer begins, “The evidence for St. Joseph’s flights is handily summarized in an article, The flying saint (The Messenger of Saint Anthony, January 2003), by Renzo Allegri.” Then he quotes from the article:

The earthly existence of Friar Joseph of Cupertino was rich in charismatic gifts. However, the phenomenon which attracted the most attention occurred during his disconcerting ecstasies. Chronicles recount, as we have already said, that he need only hear the name of Jesus, of the Virgin Mary, or of a saint before going into an ecstasy. He used to let out a wail and float in the air, remaining suspended between heaven and earth for hours. An inadmissible phenomenon for our modern mentality.

“To doubt is understandable,” Fr. Giulio Berettoni, rector of the Shrine of St. Joseph of Cupertino in Osimo tells me “but it isn’t justifiable. If we take a serious look at the saint’s life from a historical point of view, then we see that we cannot question his ecstasies. There are numerous witness accounts. They began to be documented in 1628, and this continued until Joseph’s death in 1663, i.e. for 35 years. In certain periods, the phenomenon is recorded to have taken place more than once a day. It has been calculated that Joseph’s ‘ecstatic flights’ took place at least 1,000 to 1,500 times in his lifetime, perhaps even more, and that they were witnessed by thousands of people. They were the phenomenon of the century. They were so sensational and so public that they attracted attention from curious people from all walks of life, Italians and foreigners, believers and unbelievers, simple folk, but also scholars, scientists, priests, bishops and cardinals. They continued to occur in every situation, in whatever church in which the saint prayed or celebrated Mass. It is impossible to doubt such a sensational and public phenomenon which repeated itself over time. It is also worth noting that these events occurred in the seventeenth century, the time of the Inquisition. Amazing events, miracles and healings were labelled magic and the protagonists ended up undergoing a trial by the civil and religious Inquisition. In fact, St. Joseph of Cupertino underwent this very fate because of his ecstasies. But he was subjected to various trials without ever being condemned; final proof that these are sensational events, but also real, extraordinary and concrete facts.” (Emphases mine – VJT.)

Now, I have no doubt that the solid mass of atheists will insist that these miracles did not occur, regardless of the amount of evidence provided.

But of course, this just prove that they have a pre-supposition that miracles cannot occur. That is, a religious, dogmatic belief in the power of atheistic naturalism, regardless of the evidence.

One thing I find distasteful are religious beliefs that claim neutrality, but after you press a little prove to be as rigid and devout as any believer – even more so, considering the amount of evidence for a intelligently designed universe.

Space and God

From Eric Metaxas:

Sure, a vast empty cosmos where life exists ONLY on Earth is rather hard-core creationist. And it looks like that is actually how reality is structured: at least, until we get off this world (as this blog advocates – see the title, “Across the Stars”).

Is there any hope of life to be found off this world? If we are talking about timescales of billions of years and where things create themselves a la Darwin, no way. If there was any sentient life out there, it wouldn’t take a million years before it started reshaping its galaxy, and (I suspect) would have found the means to go FTL and fill the galaxy with itself.

Even assuming STL speeds, any kind of sentient life within this galaxy, other than ourselves, would have filled it in just a few million years. And supposedly, this galaxy has existed for billions of years now…

If you assume a creationist universe of a few thousand years of age, then sure, aliens might exist. Not everyone would be as advanced as us, and it’s possible that everyone else is still stuck in the hunter-gathering stage. But if you’re an atheist, this is not a pleasant conclusion: you only get your aliens if you get a young universe too…

For extra credit: Luke Barnes’ essay, The Fine-Tuning of the Universe for Intelligent Life.