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Table of Contents
Volume 45, Number 2
May - July 2014

The Adventures of Squirrelock Holmes (TM)

Planting and Building Healthy Churches

Off the Cuff!

Just For Ladies...

Sermons

On the Home Front

Guest Editorial

Answers in Genesis

Sumner's Incidents and Illustrations

Articles of Interest

Letters We Love

Matters of Opinion

Points For Preachers to Ponder

Bible Study Corner

Our Secular World

Book Reviews

Significant Trends

Son Bloc - A Column for Young Men

Gone Fishing

Email Link To A Friend

Off the Cuff!
Dr. Robert Sumner

This issue puts us into the summer/vacation months and many of our readers will be on the road, perhaps, but, if so, The Biblical Evangelist will be waiting when you return. It will be worth your while, whenever you read it.

For one thing, there is a very, very helpful message for ministers by W. Wilbert Welch, our long-time friend and former member of the Biblical Evangelism board. We are impressed with how much godly, practical advice is available to today’s novices from those long in the ministry. Listen to Dr. Welch and profit from his wisdom and his experience.

We are also offering an interview with a dead man, the late John R. Rice, conducted and written by Clifton Cauthorne, a Baptist minister in Kentucky. We publish it as evidence of what Rice believed and taught on the Bible translation matter.

We think you will also enjoy the study by Jim Lutzweiler on what he calls Fundimensionalism, showing that truth and humor can live happily ever after, if the marriage ceremony is conducted properly. It was prepared for presentation in a sermon contest sponsored by the Baptist History & Heritage Society. I enjoyed it and so will you.

In our Bible Study Corner is a thought-provoking message about the late John Paul by John Lineberry. Read it prayerfully and consider what he says.

In fact, we have a number of references to Roman Catholicism in this issue (not trying to counter-attack the bil-lions of dollars in free publicity the television networks gave Romanism during the past month, but hoping it will help do so nonetheless), and we trust no one will think we overdid it. If so, consider it mild compared to what the media did on the other side of the coin!

The editor’s sermon in this issue is an evangelistic thrust about the enemies of our Lord on earth today. Hope-fully, you are not one of them, but if you are it calls for immediate action. And, after you are finished with it, pass it on to His enemies within your range of acquaintance.

Finally, the editor has an article dealing with a strange confrontation about today’s Fundamentalism presented at a seminar by Phil Johnson at one of the Shepherd’s Conferences sponsored by the Grace Community Church in Southern California. His remarks were widely circulated on the internet. It is our hope that this article will clear up a lot of misunderstanding for Johnson and others like him.

FREE MEDICINE!

Well, in the first place, free medicine isn't really free. It is paid for by taxes – yours and mine – and for most it the recipient doesn’t have much choice. Be that as it may, to our friends who want this country to adopt the "social-ized medicine" of Britain and Canada, chew on this report which we read recently in The Patriot "Digest":

"Not quite eight years ago a young lady [in England] was born with what doctors diagnosed as isolated bulbar palsy. This malady prevented her from properly swallowing, and for her entire life she had to be fed through a tube directly into her stomach.

"Recently, her family learned that doctors at Stanford University were treating this condition, so the family, friends and community ponied up nearly $20,000 to send the young lady to the U.S. for treatment. Lo and behold, the unsocialized doctors at Stanford could find nothing wrong with her. Nothing. That's right, she's now eating normally for the first time in her life. Though she now suffers from other medical problems resulting from the original misdi-agnosis, we're sure she'll be just fine once she gets back to the land of ‘civilized’ medicine and British cuisine."

Socialized medicine? Thanks, but no thanks!

OUR FRIEND “SUMNER”

C. Sumner Wemp is a dear brother, greatly used of God. He is one of the best soul winners I know and we are honored to have his “Gone Fishing” column in this magazine. We both have a good sense of humor and we kid in our e-mail exchanges about who is “the REAL Sumner.” Be that as it may, he wrote his conversion experience re-cently and I want to share it with you. You’ll be blessed, and challenged, as I was.

65 years ago today (March 28, 1940), I was saved. Gene Gaskins, at 4 a.m., getting ready to deliver our newspaper routes, asked me to go to church with him Sunday. I went once, that I remember, when I was about 8 years old. I told him I did not go to church. By the time Sunday came I was so eager to go to church I could hardly wait.

People prayed. That Sunday I heard for the first time in my life that God loved me. I thought God was the big Cop, waiting to throw me into Hell. Pat Wimberly, the pastor of the Franklin Street Baptist Church, told me Christ died for my sins. That shocked me. Little did I know it, but the whole church was praying for me.

Three Sundays later. The Holy Spirit convicted me something awful. For three Sundays I went back. It seemed the pastor had been told all about me. He preached right at me, I thought. That third Sunday I went forward and told the pastor I wanted to be saved. He went over how to be saved carefully and prayed with me to receive the Lord Jesus. No angels sang, no lightning flashed, but God saved me 65 years ago and I have not gotten over it yet.

Invite people to church. God says to "compel them to come" (Luke 14:23). I have thanked Gene a hundred times for asking me to come. One day, so will everyone you invite. God will be pleased. They will have a chance to go to Heaven. We could change the world if EVERY Christian obeyed God and got the gospel to people (Mark 16:15), or people to the gospel (Luke 14:23). Doesn't that make sense? I love that church, that pastor who is in Heaven now, those people, and the present pastor, Terry Gore, for they still pray for me.

Your editor was saved the same year as Wemp, a little over three months later, on July 7th.

B. B. “COWBOY” CRIMM

Over a half-century ago, when I was pastor of the Morningside Baptist Church in Graham (TX), I heard an evan-gelist who was very popular in Texas, some calling him the Billy Sunday of the South. He held a couple of crusades at the Oak Street Baptist Church in our city and I enjoyed going to hear him. He was in his sunset years at the time and sat down to preach, using a pipe railing for walking when he stood up. “Colorful” and “effective” would be a good way to describe him.

A friend of mine, Jim Lutzweiler, a research librarian at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, is seeking material on him. If you have interesting stories, letters, pictures, news items or whatever, let us know or contact Mr. Lutzweiler at Southeastern. The latter’s e-mail address is: jlutzweiler@sebts.edu

THE IMPORTANCE OF

CONTROVERSY!

We are living in an age when those who stand for Truth are maligned and misrepresented. We are told that we should love everybody and every thing. If we don’t like something, we should keep our mouths shut. You know, “Grin and bear it!” Or as they say today, “Change the channel!” The only trouble with this philosophy is that it is unscriptural.

Let me briefly list a few reasons why controversy is important, even imperative.

1. Controversy calls attention to things that are wrong, things that are against the teaching of the Word of God. The Apostle Paul, who was no stranger to controversy, put it like this to the Galatians when he was standing against legalism: “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed. For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ. But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ” (Galatians 1:6-12).

That’s pretty tough talk, but anything short of it would have been compromise. The issue was too important for Paul to take any other stance.

The late Ernest Pickering, in his excellent Is Controversy Christian? quoted the early Fundamentalist giant, Wil-liam Bell Riley: “The middle-of-the-road man is the theological menace of the 20th century. …The middle-of-the-road man commonly mistakes compromise for discretion.” Dr. Riley was right on target in his evaluation.

2. Controversy offers solutions. Controversy for the sake of controversy is not wise and often ends very sadly. When one opens his mouth or picks up his pen to deal with controversy, he or she ought to have a goal, an aim that will help those who are wrong. Good Christians don’t fight just to be fighting.

Surely this is part of what Paul meant when he said, in Galatians 6:1, “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.” And he added in the very next verse, “Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” Controversy can help in bearing the burdens of others, even if it only sets them free.

3. Controversy helps separate the sheep from the goats. While this may seem minor to some, it is often very helpful to new Christians and those who are still “babes in Christ,” even though long saved (Hebrews 5:12-14).

Paul was talking about this benefit when he wrote to the saints at Corinth (who certainly had their share of con-troversy), “For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it. For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you” (I Corinthians 11:18-19). Note: “there must be heresies.”

The word “heresies” in that last verse is the Greek word haireseis and carries the idea of controversy that causes division. He declared such to be a necessity (“must be”) and said their purpose was to show the ones approved from the ones disapproved. Such controversy makes the “true ones” manifest!

The Apostle John argued the same, saying in II John 9-11, “Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doc-trine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: for he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.”

4. Controversy helps the uninformed know whom and what to avoid. Paul used this strategy with the young minister, Timothy. He wrote to him, “This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare; holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck: of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I have delivered unto Satan, that they may learn not to blaspheme” (I Timothy 1:18-20).

He repeated the warning in II Timothy 4:14-18, “Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works: of whom be thou ware also; for he hath greatly withstood our words. At my first answer no man stood with me, but all men forsook me: I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge. Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gen-tiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”

In this day of political correctness, when preachers and teachers are told not to identify false prophets, it is im-portant to see what Paul did. He named names in other warnings, too, just as did the Apostle of Love, John. The latter wrote scathingly to “the wellbeloved Gaius” in III John 9-11 about a troublemaker: “I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not. Wherefore, if I come, I will re-member his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church. Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God.”

Before we close this editorial on controversy, we’d like to quote the Scottish evangelist and theologian, Robert Haldane (1764-1842), a man born to wealth and an eminent Christian philanthropist. Haldane, along with his brother James, Rowland Hill, and other evangelists, were very effective in evangelism. In days gone by we reviewed his 668-page Commentary on Romans (lectures to students). Here is some of what this spiritual giant said about the im-portance of controversy:

Many religious persons have a dread of controversy and wish truth to be stated without any reference to those who hold the opposite errors. Contro-versy and a bad spirit are, in their estimation, synonymous terms. And strenuously to oppose what is wrong is considered as contrary to Christian meek-ness. Those who hold this opinion seem to overlook what every page of the New Testament lays before us. In all the history of our Lord Jesus Christ, we never find Him out of controversy. From the moment He entered on the discharge of His office in the synagogue of Nazareth till He expired on the cross, it was an uninterrupted scene of controversy. Nor did He, with all the heavenly meekness which in Him shone so brightly, treat truth and error without reference to those who held them or study to avoid giving its proper appellation, to those corruptions in doctrine or practice that endangered the interests of immortal souls. His censures were not confined to doctrine, but included the abettors of false principles themselves.

And as to the Apostles, their epistles are generally controversial. Most of them were directly written for the express purpose of vindicating truth and opposing error – and the authors of heresies do not escape with an abstract condemnation of their false doctrine. Paul again and again most indignantly denounces the conduct of the opposers of the Gospel, and by name points out those against whom he cautions his brethren. When Hymenaeus and Alexan-der erred concerning the faith and when he delivered them unto Satan that they might learn not to blaspheme, he did not compliment them as amiable and learned persons. Even that Apostle who treats most of love and who possessed so much of that spirit which was so eminently manifested in his Divine Master, does not avoid controversy – nor in controversy does he study to avoid severity of censure on the opposers of the truth. In the examples of opposing error (left on record for our imitation) we perceive nothing of that frigid spirit of indifference which smiles on the corrupters of the Word of God and shuns to call heresy by its proper name.

With what holy indignation do the Apostles denounce the subtle machinations of the enemies of the gospel! In vain shall we look among those faithful servants of the Lord for anything to justify that trembling reserve which fears to say decidedly that truth is truth – and error is error.

In what style, indeed, should perversions of the truth of God be censured? Ought they to be treated as mere matters of opinion on which we may in-nocently and safely differ? Or ought they to be met in a tone of solemn, strong and decided approbation? Paul warned Christians against men who arose from among themselves, speaking perverse things to draw away disciples after them – and instead of complimenting false teachers in his day, denounced an angel from heaven on the supposition of his preaching another gospel. And if an Apostle was withstood to the face, because he was to be blamed, are the writings of those who subvert the Gospel to pass without rebuke?

When the canker of the principles of neology (the use of new meanings for established words), derived from the Continent and from America, is per-verting the faith of many and seducing them into the paths of error – which a spirit of lukewarmness and indifference to truth is advancing under the mask of charity and liberality, there is a loud call on all Christians to “stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the Gos-pel,” to present a firm and united phalanx of opposition to error under every name – from whatever quarter it may approach. Should believers become unfaithful to their trust and be seduced to abandon their protest against false doctrines, they may gain the approbation of the world – but what will this avail when compared with the favor of God? But if (with prayer to God, in the use of the appointed means) they contend earnestly for the truth, then they may expect the gracious fulfillment of the blessed promise, “When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a stan-dard against him.”

Never forget or ignore the importance of controversy in the Christian life and ministry.

WE SALUTE THE LADY!

We doff our editorial hat to that little lady in Georgia, 26-year-old Ashley Smith , who single-handedly calmed, controlled and captured that cruel, cold calculating killer, Brian Nichols, entertaining him in her apartment for 13 hours. It is a terrific tale! He had already killed four, including a judge, by the time he arrived at her complex.

How did she do it? Partly by talking to him about the Lord. She also read the Bible to him and that day’s portion of The Purpose-Driven Life by Rick Warren. She further manifested what she read in that day’s session; namely, being a servant. She fixed him breakfast and otherwise tried to serve him. He allowed her, eventually, to go pick up her daughter from Awana’s, knowing surely she would notify police where he was. He surrendered peacefully and without incident.

Smith used the time to tell him that God had a purpose for his life, too. He does, you know. We’d love to hear the follow-up about how he has received Jesus Christ as Savior. Someone who has access to him can certainly win him if he tries.

TO OUR MAMAS & PAPAS!

This issue falls in the area of both Mother’s Day (May 8) and Father’s Day (June 19). Since we have no special sermons for them, let the editor just wish each reader who is a mother or father a special “congratulations!” I thank God for my parents, both Christians, and you probably do for yours as well.

The origin of Mother’s Day is well known, but let me give you the origin of Father’s Day. I quote from a card my eldest son sent me 8 years ago on Father’s Day:

In 1910, Mrs. John Bruce Dodd of Spokane, Washington organized the first Father’s Day celebration to pay tribute to her own loving father, William Jackson Smart, a Civil War veteran who had raised six children after the death of his wife. It became official in 1972, when a congressional resolution proclaimed the third Sunday in June a national holiday.

We thank God for the many fathers (and mothers) who have sacrificed and paid a tremendous price to bring their children up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4).

TERRI’S “LAST WORD”

Pinellas Circuit Court Judge George Greer, who ordered the removal of Terri Schiavo's feeding tubes, was a member of Calvary Baptist Church, a Southern Baptist work in Clearwater, Florida. So incensed was he at his church's reactions to the case he first withheld financial support and then asked to be removed from membership (not “kicked out” as Alan Colmes reported on Fox News, although later reports indicate the pastor may have sug-gested such as being best for all concerned).

In fairness to Greer, he was probably convinced that his decisions were based on sound juris prudence which gave him no other recourse – just as a Christian makes unpopular decisions based on his understanding of Scripture. Alas, his ruling was made on faulty data. The doctor Hubby Michael hired to testify before Greer was Dr. Ronald Cranford, a “right to die activist,” who has, in the past, been a featured speaker for the pro-euthanasia Hemlock So-ciety and once told reporters he wanted to be known as “Doctor Humane Death.” He brags about having caused 25-50 legal deaths (feeding tube removed, etc.). He’s the fellow who wrote Intended Death: The Ethics of Assisted Sui-cide and Euthanasia.

That the data Greer ruled on was faulty we will show below. But once Greer made his first decision finding Terri would have wanted to die (based only on the verbal, hearsay testimony of Michael and his relatives), the case was set in concrete – no higher court would interfere. Actually, they really couldn’t interfere, unless that could be over-turned.

[Later: Maybe we were too eager to say something nice about Judge Greer. Since writing the above we learned an interesting development coming out near the end of Terri's life. It seems WND reported the "right-to-die-advocate" serving as Michael's lawyer, George Felos (he travels the country lecturing on euthanasia rights for fees up to $15,000 – which will go way up now, we predict), made a "campaign contribution" to Judge Greer the day after a key ruling was made in the federal court. In fact, no less than 3 other lawyers, all having involvement in Terri’s case at one time or another, contributed to his "re-election" bid: Deborah Bushnell, Gwyneth Stanley and Stephen G. Nilsson. And so did court-appointed attorneys representing the husband's interest, Pacarek & Herman, and Richard Pearse.]

In the final analysis, Terri was put to death on hearsay evidence from a witness whose credibility and motives were, to say the least, certainly suspect. Regarding hearsay evidence, when we were in a court case in Texas years ago, my son quoted what a county official said about our religious organization in a derogatory way in a public meeting with reporters present, but it was stricken as “hearsay.” Yet Terri was eventually put to death on hearsay evidence supposedly given privately.

Judge Greer should have listened to Thomas Jefferson, who said: "The first duty of government is the protection of life, not its destruction. ... The chief purpose of government is to protect life. Abandon that and you have aban-doned all." Perhaps it is fitting that today’s judges are robed in black.

In the countdown to Terri Schiavo's criminal execution by starvation and dehydration, multi-millionaire busi-nessman Robert Herring, Sr., put $1 million in a trust account and sent an offer in writing to Michael Schiavo, along with a letter of confirmation from the National Bank of California about the $1 million deposit, guaranteeing the money to him if he would transfer his custodial rights to Terri's parents. He refused. One million was small potatoes. Media, movie, television, book rights, etc., are worth far, far more, of course.

As you know, Congress got involved. At the time the United States House of Representatives passed the emer-gency bill trying to save Terri's life (203-58, where 55 Democrats and 5 Republicans voted "Nay"), a Pennsylvania representative, Joseph Pitts, observed, "If prisoners on death row are guaranteed federal review of their cases, Terri Schiavo deserves at least as much consideration."

It seems hard to argue against that reasoning, especially in the light of the notes above. And, as our President commented in signing it, "In cases like this one, where there are serious questions and substantial doubts, our soci-ety, our laws, and our courts should have a presumption in favor of life. ...This presumption is especially critical for those like Terri Schiavo who live at the mercy of others."

Other Congressmen beside Pitts expressed kindred views at the time:

Wisconsin Representative James Sensenbrenner pointed out during floor debate, "When a person’s intentions re-garding whether to receive life-saving treatment are unclear, the responsibility of a compassionate nation is to affirm that person’s right to life." (And they were certainly “unclear” in this case. Hubby Michael didn’t even remember her “want to die” comments until years into her problem and after receiving a hefty settlement. Too, it was certainly “unclear” that he was even her “husband,” since he had taken a common-law wife and was bearing children by her.)

Answering the claim of "persistent vegetative state” (PVS), New Jersey Congressman Christopher Smith pointed out, "No less than 14 independent medical professionals – including six neurologists – have said she is not in a per-sistent vegetative state." And he noted about Terri's Florida, where not feeding an animal results in a fine up to $5,000 and jail time, "An animal has a higher right than this woman; that’s a wrong priority, and this bill attempts to correct it." Oh, did we mention, a Vermont farmer a month or so ago began serving a 1-year sentence for starving his cows? Heifers are more important than ladies, apparently, since it was okay to starve Terri.

As you know, the only "life support" – and we certainly heard a lot from the media about her being on life sup-ports – Terri had been receiving was the tube offering food and drink. According to Dr. William Hammesfahr, whom Baptist Press identified as a "renowned neurologist," she didn't even need that. She could be fed orally if it were allowed, but her 'husband' refused to allow her to be given the test (barium swallow) to determine the consis-tency of foods she would be able to take orally, without the tube. We think that she lived just 1 day shy of two full weeks without food and water of any kind after the tube removal was indicative of what good health her body was in.

Hammesfahr said, "They are truly withholding food from a person who is awake, alert, and can eat and swal-low.” After a 10-hour examination he told Judge Greer that fact, but Fox News and others were saying "all the ex-perts agree" that her case was hopeless. By the way, Hammesfahr was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology for his work in brain injury and stroke back in 1999. He is not an amateur in this field.

According to him, the other doctors who testified in 2003 (see above about Doc Cranford) had only "limited ex-posure" to Terri and "did not complete standard evaluations for brain injuries." He said further, "She is like a child with cerebral palsy. She can speak. At least when I saw her, she would speak very slowly. She would sort of form words, she would move her arms and legs at command. She could understand questions in English.” He further claimed he knows at least 50 physicians in private practice and/or in medical universities who agreed that she was not PVS or a coma victim.

When he examined her on 9/12/02, among other things his report (we have a copy and have read it in its entirety – we wish all could), he stated about her sensory exam: "The patient was tested to light touch, pressure, and sharp touch and pain in all four extremities and on her face. The pain portion in the extremities was conducted by pinching the nail beds of her hands and feet. She clearly feels pain as the videotapes show." That in spite of the pompous, pious "authorities" who assured their worldwide television audiences that Terri, being starved and dehydrated, felt no pain because she had the PVS and her brain was dead. Incidentally, his conclusion after the neck exam was that her condition was "consistent with a neck injury." Who or what caused it?

The first two hours of his exam, which covered several hours over two days, focusing on cognitive awareness of her surroundings, was carried out in a chair. The last one hour on videotape was carried out in her bed. In neither position did she have difficulty handling any saliva or secretions. Only briefly, for a few minutes at a time, did she appear to tire and lose the ability to respond, track or interact with her surroundings.

Was she in a coma? He said, "She does not exhibit ‘Doll's Eye’ motion, an abnormality seen in coma patients whose eyes move back and forth like a doll's when their head is moved. Coma patients cannot direct their gaze to specific things and maintain their gaze on those things regardless of head motion or motion of the object. She can do these things." He added, "When using a sharp piece of wood, which she found uncomfortable, and going over her entire body (except diapered areas and breast areas), we found that sensation is present everywhere. Sensation on the right side as evidenced by moaning or tightening up muscles or withdrawal and was more prevalent than on the left.

Here was his “impression” of Terri’s case, as per his report:

The patient is not in coma.

She is alert and responsive to her environment. She responds to specific people best.

She tries to please others by doing activities for which she gets verbal praise.

She responds negatively to poor tone of voice.

She responds to music.

She differentiates sounds from voices.

She differentiates specific people's voices from others.

She differentiates music from stray sound.

She attempts to verbalize.

She has voluntary control over multiple extremities

She can swallow.

She is partially blind.

She is probably aphasic and has a degree of receptive aphasia.

She can feel pain.

In short, she was not exactly a living-dead person!

Baptist Press said he offered this insight into death by starvation:

"People who die of starvation, their acid eats through their stomach, they develop infections in their body, their body starts to dissolve from the in-side out, they develop seizures, [and] frequently it breaks their back," he said. "They have to have medications to essentially put them into a coma to not have their body break their back or something of that nature."

Another specialist, Michael Baden, a top forensic pathologist interviewed on Fox News Television back on Oc-tober 25, 2003, discussing Terri's bone scan and injuries, said: “a) Terri's injuries are not consistent with a heart at-tack; no cardiac evidence to support it; b) Extremely rare for potassium imbalance on woman her age and in her good health; c) Injuries are consistent with severe trauma possibly caused by a beating; d) The injuries in medi-cal records warrant an immediate investigation” (emphasis added). This is in harmony with what Terri’s three friends testified. Each claimed Michael was abusive toward Terri and mentioned at least two ways he might have tried to kill her: insulin injection, induced pneumonia.

We understand she had a number of broken bones (rib, ankle, etc.) and Hammesfahr said he had seen her pattern of mixed brain (cerebral) and spinal cord findings in a patient once before, a patient who was asphyxiated. Earlier he said her neck injuries were consistent with only one type: strangulation. If any form of criminal investigation can be made at this late date, we trust it will be.

Still another specialist, Dr. William P. Cheshire, Jr., an eminent neurologist who serves as the director of a Mayo Clinic laboratory in Jacksonville dealing with unconscious reflexes like digestion, disputed a number of the state’s allegations and again emphasized the possibility of misdiagnosis in her case. He argued for her immediate removal to another institution and that her food and water be restored. He testified that she does react to pain and even reacts visibly when others in the room speak of painful things. He noted that about 3 years had passed since her last "neu-rologic consultation" and there were "huge uncertainties” about her "true neurologic status."

He also noted that there is "a high rate of false initial diagnoses of PVS," which is what Terri was supposed to have, saying science had made much progress in this field since her diagnosis, and offered 7 reasons why her previ-ous PVS diagnosis might be wrong. He said if he were her doctor, he could not "in good conscience withdraw her feeding and hydration." He said, "I could not withhold life-sustaining nutrition and hydration from this beautiful lady whose face brightens in the presence of others." Noting that she did not meet the criteria of the terminally ill, his conclusion was: "[I]t would be wrong to bring about her death by withdrawing food and water."

Sounding a lot like what President Bush said, he opined: "How medicine and society choose to think about Terri Schiavo will influence what kind of people we will be as we evaluate and respond to the needs of the most vulner-able people among us. When serious doubts exist as to whether a cognitively impaired person is or is not con-sciously aware, even if these doubts cannot be conclusively resolved, it is better to err on the side of protecting vul-nerable life."

We think Joseph Farah had a good point when he wrote, agreeing with the bigamist argument above: “If I were the judge in this case, I would call Michael Schiavo and his attorney into my chambers and tell them: "I'll give you a choice: You can divorce this woman and turn guardianship over to her loving parents who clearly want to serve their daughter's best interests, or you can pursue this death wish of yours in a higher court. If you choose the latter route, I will ask the district attorney to conduct a full investigation into the mysterious cause of Terri's condition. I will also ask the district attorney and the news media to examine why Terri has been denied adequate care and efforts to treat her condition.

"That's what a good judge would choose to do.

“But we don't have many of those left in America."

By the way, prior to the final removal of Terri's feeding tube ("removal" is perhaps a poor word because it wasn't in except for feeding times – and not even needed for those, as noted above) – one of her attorneys, Barbara Weller, with the David Gibbs team, was in her room. She held her and begged her to say, "I want to live."

Weller said, "To my enormous shock and surprise, Terri’s eyes opened wide, she looked me square in the face, and with a look of great concentration, she said, 'Ahhhhhhh.' Then, seeming to summon up all the strength she had, she virtually screamed, 'Waaaaaaaa.' She yelled so loudly that Michael Vitadamo, Suzanne’s husband, and the fe-male police officer who were then standing together outside Terri’s door, clearly heard her. At that point, Terri had a look of anguish on her face that I had never seen before and she seemed to be struggling hard, but was unable to complete the sentence. She became very frustrated and began to cry. ...I promised Terri I would tell the world that she had tried to say, 'I want to live'." This is the poor soul her husband insisted the courts kill. And they did!

The Wall Street Journal editorialized: "The 'right to die' has become another liberal cause, part of the 'privacy' canon that extends through Roe (abortion) and Lawrence (homosexuality) and the Ninth Circuit's views on assisted suicide that the Supreme Court is taking up this year. Of course, it gets a little messy when someone is actually be-ing killed, and a husband with a conflict of interest is the one who claims she wanted to kill herself, but the Left ap-parently believes these are mere details that shouldn't interfere with the broader cause. Thus the discovery of federal-ism. Terri Schiavo's case is a tragedy for her and her family. Beyond the immediate question of whether she lives or dies, her case may well have the salutary effect of demonstrating to the elites who want the right to kill oneself em-bedded into law that there is another side to the debate that is going to be heard."

Former New York City Mayor Ed Koch got on Fox News and made a big deal of letting Terri “die with dignity.” Come on, Mr. Koch, what is dignified about dying from dehydration and starvation?

There was one thing strange about this case: how long it took Jesse Jackson to rush to Florida and stand in front of the cameras. He is usually first in line.

Kathleen Parker summed it up for a lot of us: "We can argue endlessly about whether [Terri] Schiavo's existence passes our own personal muster for 'quality of life,' and argue we should. What bitter decision is this, to let a woman die? What question more deserving of our sweat and tears? But the fact that Schiavo's fate has rested in the hands of a man who is her husband in title only is both mystifying and maddening. If we resolve nothing else, some of our energy will be well spent examining the criteria used to determine who is best qualified to protect a disabled per-son's interests. Michael Schiavo, who was Terri Schiavo's husband when she suffered a heart attack and severe brain damage 15 years ago, today lives with another woman with whom he has had two children. Except that he has never sought a divorce from Terri – and therefore by law has final say over her life – he is by no normal definition her 'husband.' Put another way, we can safely bet that if Terri Schiavo were aware that her husband was parking his shoes under another woman's dust ruffle, she likely would declare her marriage kaput. That Michael Schiavo still has authority to end her life, or 'let her die' as we prefer to call it, adds injury to the insult that has become her exis-tence."

We close with a quote readers need to think about, from Columnist William Federer: "The question is not whether the suffering and dying person's life should be terminated; the question is, what kind of nation will we be-come if they are? Their physical death is preceded only by our moral death!"

[Postscript: In all the aftermath of Terri's death, with everyone saying she is "with God," "at rest," “in Heaven,” etc., we will prove our sour spirit by merely saying, "We sincerely hope so!" If she is, it is not because of her suffer-ing or mistreatment. The Bible is clear that no one goes to Heaven on that basis. If she is in Heaven – and, again, we say that we hope she is – it is because she was a sinner who put her faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ and in Him alone. Alas, she was a member of a religious group that majors in putting trust in an organization and its formal rituals – a church, its leaders, and its ‘saints’ – but we trust many in it are saved (not because of their church's teachings, but in spite of them). We are not God, so we leave her eternal fate with Him!]

WISCONSIN KILLINGS!

All good Americans were shocked when 44-year-old Terry Ratzmann walked into the rented room at the Shera-ton Hotel in Brookfield, a suburb of Milwaukee, where the branch of the “Living Church of God” was meeting, and opened fire. He killed 7, wounded 4, and then committed suicide. The fatally wounded included the group’s pastor, Randy L. Gregory, and his son, James. The pastor’s wife, Marjean, was critically wounded.

When we learned the background it was still shocking, but not quite so surprising. The Living Church of God split from the “Armstrongism” cult (the Worldwide Church of God). When Armstrong’s group “got converted” (the entire denomination voted to give up cult doctrines and accept orthodox beliefs, something impossible to do on a group basis – only individuals can be converted), there were diehards who refused to give up Mr. Armstrong’s teaching.

One of the many splinter groups – the second largest, we understand – separated in 1992 and called itself the Global Church of God with headquarters in Glenora (CA). Later it moved to Charlotte (NC) and became the Living Church of God. The head guy in “Living” is Roderick C. Meredith. He was one of Armstrong’s big boys in the old movement. In fact, in the early days he was one of the 5 broadcasters on the cult’s radio program. The others were Herman Hoeh, Garner Ted Armstrong, Richard Armstrong (who died tragically when his father refused medical treatment that could have saved his life), and, of course, Herbert W. Armstrong; Hoeh and Meredith were the only two outside the immediate family.

To show what a big man Meredith was in the cult, the church’s position on healing (very radical: doctors were false prophets, medication was “doing drugs,” etc.) was modified for him. It seems he had a detached retina and needed surgery. He was finally given permission, but all the cult’s ministers were warned not to use the evil “opera-tion” word; it was to be called “repair” surgery!

When the Worldwide group was rocked with sexual scandal in the late 1970s, Armstrong made C. Wayne Cole the church’s Executive Director. He lasted only one day and then Meredith was appointed to the post! Before the split, Meredith has risen to the position of “Director of Ministries” and was what we would call a BMOC (Big Man on Campus). After giving his life to Armstrong’s teachings, he obviously did not want to adopt evangelical, ortho-dox teaching – and he didn’t.

The Living Church of God, like the Worldwide Church of God, is a “we-have-the-truth-exclusively” organiza-tion. According to its web, it boasts 7,000 members in 288 congregations in over 40 countries (an average of less than 25 per congregation). Another source said it had 6,300 members. No matter. Small isn’t necessarily bad.

In Wisconsin, Ratzmann walked in from the back and went all the way to the front to kill the pastor first, which might indicate a local church problem (the killer left no notes). However, it is more important to understand the background of the Worldwide Church of God (see the editor’s 424-page, hardbound ARMSTRONGISM: The Worldwide Church of God Examined in the Searching Light of Scripture, available from us for $15, postage paid, along with a free follow-up booklet, Is Armstrong’s Cult Now Orthodox?)

When Armstrong launched his work in 1932 it was apocalyptic to the core. His first magazine (Plain Truth, Feb-ruary 1, 1934) had a lead article, “Is a World Dictator About to Appear?” A box under the headline asked, “Will it be Mussolini, Stalin, or Roosevelt?” Armstrong wrote on page 3, “We may be absolutely certain that we are in, and for about three years have been passing thru, this great world-wide tribulation” (emphasis added). On page 4, he referenced Luke 21:25-27, then quoted verse 28, “And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh,” into which he inserted into the Scripture, as was his custom, the words, “They began in 1929.” Alas, nearly three-fourths of a century have passed without his words being ful-filled.

Meredith and Living Church are following in Armstrong’s train. He had just sent a video to the faithful (all 6 or 7 thousand of them), telling them they were in the final push – surely in the next 5 or 6 years. (Some false prophets never learn, do they? That can’t resist the temptation to set time schedules and dates.)

And based on that, I’ll offer my theory as to what triggered Ratzmann. It’s one I’m confident you haven’t heard anywhere else and it is one I certainly can’t prove (nor can others disprove). My idea is this: he loved his pastor, his church, and his fellow worshipers. The idea of them (and him) going through the awful rigors of the Great Tribula-tion moved him with great tenderness. He wanted to kill them and spare them that horror. He was not mean and vin-dictive; he was loving and compassionate.

Right or wrong, I’ll guarantee you that is the nicest thing anyone has said about Ratzmann since the tragedy. (And this tragedy is merely indicative of the greater tragedy: the false teachings of Armstrongism and all its hereti-cal children!)

SPARE OUR [GUILTY] YOUTH

The Supreme Court recently ruled 5-4 that young people under 18 cannot be executed, no matter how brutal or heinous their crimes. In short, a kid 17 years, 11 months and 30 days in age cannot be executed, but another youth a day or two older, can be! While I think such rulings will cause "you pull the trigger because they can't execute you" scenarios, I have always felt the State should be very careful in executing youth.

However, the Court's ruling on this issue was based, not on law or the constitution, but on what it called "evolv-ing standards of decency that mark a maturing society." Once again, the courts are legislating from the bench! This is a big, big mistake and the practice is getting as out of hand as a yard full of dandelions.

And the High Court was certainly being selective in this, refusing to even consider the Schiavo case – where what was involved was only permitting parents to take over the care of an innocent woman who had committed no crime. Apparently they didn’t think society had evolved enough to spare her, to not execute her by starva-tion/dehydration.

Quite frankly, this is not an attitude toward life on which we want our courts to operate.

RELIGION’S NEW LOW!

Notice that we said “religion,” not “Christianity,” because this is far, far outside the realm of the biblical.

What are we talking about? Well, it relates to an older, divorced man getting married to an older, divorced woman, with whom he has been having an adulterous, common-law, live-in marriage. Yes, we are talking about Prince Charles of England and his paramour, Camilla Parker Bowles. In Old Testament times they would have been taken outside the camp and stoned.

Their “slip knot” was tied on April 9th – a day after originally scheduled, since Charlie had to represent his coun-try at the pope’s funeral(!), hopefully not as its religious representative (see next paragraph). Queen Elizabeth and Prime Minister Tony Blair both voiced their approval and gave their official consent. (The queen’s permission re-portedly came about because she was tired of talk about her son “living in sin!”)

Why does what they do in jolly England upset us? Because Charles is supposed to be the head of the Anglican Church when he becomes king, replacing Elizabeth in that slot. What an example that will make for the youth of Britain and the world – including American members of the Episcopal Church, who are tied to the Mother Church in England. He’ll hardly fit the “Defender of the Faith” title he will assume in that position.

Alas, it will make Charles the most vulgar head of the Church of England since its founder, King Henry VIII, launched it in order to get rid of Catherine of Aragon. By the way, one of Camilla’s friends (one invited to the blow-out) had this to say about her, supposedly bragging on her: “She’s a very earthy, funny woman. You can swear in front of her.” What other “good traits” do you suppose she has?

THIS & THAT…

Well, the hurricane season is coming upon us again. When folks ask me what I think, as a Floridian, I put it like this: In California and elsewhere, earthquakes happen (bad). In the Midwest and elsewhere, there are tornadoes (bad). In New England and elsewhere there are flash floods (bad). In Florida there are hurricanes (not limited to Florida, of course; they have them nearly everywhere in the States, including Long Island, NY; California, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, etc., etc.). All of those baddies hit without advance warning EXCEPT HURRI-CANES, which give you days and sometimes even weeks advance notice. I'd rather face hurricanes. Most agree (it certainly sounds logical), so I think I'm safe…

As a Father's Day tribute we offer these words by that noble World War II leader, General Douglas MacArthur: "By profession I am a soldier and take great pride in that fact, but I am prouder, infinitely prouder, to be a father. A soldier destroys in order to build; the father only builds, never destroys. The one has the potentialities of death; the other embodies creations and life. And while the hordes of death are mighty, the battalions of life are mightier still."...

Perhaps the Sodomites in America should become Buddhists. Even same-sex marriage is okay with them and the oldest Buddhist denomination in the United States (established in 1889) recently passed a resolution endorsing such…

Ben Franklin had a good question: "If men are so wicked with religion, what would they be if without it?"…

Young earth, or old earth? The bones of a Tyrannosaurus Rex found in Montana recently seem to answer with a resounding "Young!" When researchers found one of the thigh bones was too long to fit into their helicopter, they broke it in two and, to their surprise, discovered soft tissues that included blood vessels and other evidence, proving the bones had not completely fossilized yet. As our columnist Ken Ham's group noted, it offers "immensely power-ful support to the idea that dinosaur fossils are not millions of years old at all, but were mostly fossilized under catastrophic conditions a few thousand years ago at most."...

Lorne Sanny was the second president of the Navigators, taking the helm when Dawson Trotman died he-roically rescuing a girl from drowning at Word of Life in Schroon Lake (NY). Sanny, a good man who did a fine job, died last month at age 84…

In this space last issue we mentioned the fleeting glory of athletic fame. Here is an illustration: On December 23, 1982 Mark Wells was the hero in what was called “the biggest upset in college basketball history.” A member of the tiny Chaminade University team (800-student body), he shot 3 free throws in the final minute to defeat the No. 1 team in the nation, Virginia (with its 7’, 4” phenom, Ralph Sampson). Now homeless, Wells was found dead of mul-tiple gunshot wounds on the Island of Maui. Two days earlier he had been arrested on a sexual assault investigation, but released…

That there are numerous good conservative organizations around, we doubt not. But we are getting a little tired of the ones that send us reports of the latest moves to the left, and then suggest that sending them money is the best way to answer the problem. We don’t think so!...

Don't spare the rod and flunk out of school? Scott McConnell, who was working in the masters program in edu-cation at LeMoyne College in New York, was not permitted by school administrators to enroll for its Spring semes-ter. His crime? He had written a paper, submitted to his instructors, advocating corporal punishment in public schools...

Which reminds us of what Will Rogers once opined: "It's easy to be a humorist when you've got the whole gov-ernment working for you."...

More bad news for Sodomites. There is a new, more deadly strain of HIV – one doctors in New York City claim is resistant to nearly all drugs and produces a rapid onset of AIDS. Success in treating the old forms of HIV has produced a false security among those practicing what God calls an abominable lifestyle. At this writing only one man is known to be infected with the new strain, but he admits to having had sex with "hundreds of partners," so doctors are expecting the worst. Currently there are approximately 40,000 new cases of AIDS annually...

The world’s first international “transvestite beauty pageant” was held last year in Pattaya, Thailand. I have al-ways heard “boys will be boys,” but apparently some want to be girls…

Last year an estimated 100,000 kids in the public schools participated in an annual "Day of Silence," where stu-dents and teachers (in some cases even school officials!) remained mute for the day to show support for Sodomites and transsexuals. This year saw the launching of a counter-movement, "The Truth Cannot Be Silenced," an obser-vance following the "Silence" day, with Christian kids passing out cards that said, "I am speaking the Truth to break the silence. I believe in equal treatment for all, and not special rights for a few. I believe in loving my neighbor, but part of that love means not condoning detrimental personal and social behavior. I believe that by boldly proclaim-ing the Truth, hurts will be halted, hearts will be healed, and lives will be saved." Some also wore T-shirts with messages. No school permitting the first day could legally deny the second, of course...

“Buy American,” right? The sneaker giant, Nike, recently admitted it has over 700 factories overseas, including 124 in China, 73 in Thailand, 35 in South Korea and 34 in Vietnam. With all this “slave labor” overseas, how come Nike is so expensive someone like me can’t afford them?...

For the benefit of those who say we do not fault President Bush when we think he is wrong, we quote this state-ment from Lyn Nofziger with approval: "Before his time as president is over Mr. Bush may find that the biggest can of worms he has to contend with in his second term is not Iraq, is not terrorism and is not Social Security, but in-stead is his weak and wishy-washy handling of the illegal alien problem. At this point it is the one problem that is arousing the ire of significant numbers of Americans. And Bush's solution to it, amnesty disguised as a guest worker program, is no solution at all."...

The Golden Arches celebrated its Golden Anniversary last month (on tax day, April 15, of all days). The first McDonald opened on that date in Des Plaines (IL) and evolved into one of the most successful business ventures of the 20th century. And they did it all without me. I went in twice in 50 years, once to humor grandchildren and once because an evangelist/missionary I was traveling with thought he couldn’t get coffee anywhere else…

NBC-TV's Dateline did an exposé on Benny Hinn recently, quoting former and current employees and giving copies of receipts dealing with his lavish lifestyle. One ex-employee, Nathan Daniel, said he was fired when he questioned Hinn's "orphan ministry," saying to him it was "fraud and deception." Wall Watchers, an organization that reports on ministry finances worldwide, said it had spent more than a year requesting information from Hinn and then the minister's lawyers finally responded with a letter refusing the request. We are glad we have nothing to hide, giving reports to our givers monthly of every penny received and every penny spent...

Dr. James T. Draper, Jr., president of LifeWay Christian Resources in the Southern Baptist Convention, never spoke truer words based on observation when he declared: “Revival never started with denominational servants, but with young, dynamic, passionate, convictional leaders.”...

Oregon has a physician-assisted suicide law and 42-year-old lung cancer victim David Prueitt, almost a kid, de-cided to take advantage of it. His doctor gave him the fatal prescription and he obediently took it. Alas, he woke up the next morning feeling chipper. That was in January; in mid-March he died of natural causes. Don't tell us God doesn't have a sense of humor!...

Well, the atheist fools (Psalm 14:1) successfully bluffed their way to another victory. The ACLU notified the Boy Scouts of America that they were ready to launch major lawsuits against public schools and other governmental agencies that sponsor Scout groups because they open meetings pledging allegiance to God, country and moral liv-ing. The Scout leadership, obviously tired of such court battles, rolled over and played dead, announcing that they would withdraw those units – numbering thousands and involving well over a million adult leaders. Fighting the fools in court would cost millions. Gregg Shields said the troops involved would probably move to community and religious organizations. Will sanity ever return to our American jurisprudence? Probably not in our lifetime...

Our longtime friends, Dr. Mark & Irene Jackson – he was one of the first chairmen on our board at Biblical Evangelism – were temporarily separated from their son, Rev. Paul Kevin Jackson, on January 4th. Promoted to Glory at age 50 after an 18-month battle with cancer, this former pastor is survived by his wife of 26 years, Deborah, and four children: Jonathan, Andrew, Jennifer and Bethany. We offer our sincere sympathy...

The killings on the Indian reservation reminded me that they are the locale for the "most complete socialism" program we have in America. The government takes care of them from the cradle to the grave. Ipso facto: Their lives, for the most part, are useless. The main cause of death is accidental (often involving alcohol and/or drugs), followed by suicide and homicide. The whole reservation program should be abandoned, taking exceptions for the elderly and infirm, of course...

Senior citizens notice it whether anyone else does or not. Notice what? The rapidly escalating prices of prescrip-tion medicine. What is causing it? Here’s a hint: in the 7 or so years since the Food & Drug Administration decided to let pharmaceutical companies advertise their products, such advertising has reached $3.8 billion! That’s more than Coca-Cola, Pepsico and Cadbury Schweppes spend in advertising soft drinks combined. Drug companies have seemingly taken over some of the radio and television stations…

Which reminds us, The Oregonian reported that alcohol abuse was blamed for 75,000 American deaths in a re-cent year, more than 4,500 of them under the legal drinking age. Each death cut an average 30 years off the life of the victim. Oh, the wicked curse of liquor! [See the editor’s booklet, The Blight of Booze!]...

Our good friend, Dr. John D. Morris, president of the Institute for Creation Research, noted in that organization’s paper, Back to Genesis, American evolutionists want Charles Darwin’s birthday, February 12 (formerly honoring Abraham Lincoln), to be recognized as a national holiday. It already is so observed in several other countries. But as Morris noted, “foolishness certainly doesn’t need a special day.” Anyway, we honor it here in April every year (on April 1st)!...

Here is what Robert Reich, United States Labor Secretary under Bill Clinton, had to say recently in a column ti-tled "Bush's God": The great conflict of the 21st century will not be between the West and terrorism. Terrorism is a tactic, not a belief. The true battle will be between modern civilization and anti-modernists; between those who believe in the primacy of the individual and those who believe that human beings owe their allegiance and identity to a higher authority; between those who give priority to life in this world and those who believe that human life is mere preparation for an existence beyond life; between those who believe in science, reason, and logic and those who believe that truth is revealed through Scripture and religious dogma. Terrorism will disrupt and destroy lives. But terrorism itself is not the greatest danger we face" (emphasis added). Ipso facto: you and I who believe in God and believe the Bible are a greater threat to mankind than terrorism! You’d think his name was Robert “Third” Reich, wouldn’t you?...

Columnist James Taranto noted: "It boggles the mind that 36 Democrats would vote against the first Hispanic attorney general out of tender concern for the well-being of terrorists, but there you are."...

Just what I needed, right? One of my e-mail spams the other day caught my attention (just before I deleted it) be-cause the headline offered: "A Genuine College Degree in 2 Weeks!" It promised "No Study Required! 100% Verifiable!" (whatever that means). I could even get a PhD (Bachelors, Masters, Doctorates were all offered). I es-pecially liked the "no study" bit for a PhD! Alas, I didn't bother to check the "fee" for matriculation, but I'm sure it was impressive. Do some preachers actually buy these things?...

We think the lowest Zambian is as loved by God and as valuable in His sight, but we are delighted to report the conversion and baptism of that nation's President, Levy Mwanawasa. He and his wife, Paula, are now a members of the Twin Palm Baptist Church in Lusaka, the nation's capital...

Strange happenings in the Empire State. New York, through an activist judge on its Supreme Court, has ruled that marriage laws are unconstitutional because they violate the "due process and equal protection clauses" of the State Constitution. Judge (we hate to say "Her Honor") Doris Ling-Cohan's ruling joins the insanity of Massachu-setts and Washington, where judges took over the legislative branch of their governments and "ruled" from the bench. The Supreme Court in New York is the second highest in that land; its Court of Appeals is the top one...

Kevin Martin has been appointed the new FCC Chairman. Let's pray that he will do a better job of protecting the airwaves than his predecessors...

Talk about unbelievable! The Supreme Court in one of the most liberal States in the Union finally got it right, invalidating over 3,000 same sex "marriages!" Multnomah County in Oregon had been issuing the licenses right and left, handing them out like lollipops to children, but its high court said, "You can't do that!" By the way, the ruling was unanimous (7-0). Perhaps, for Oregon, the strangest thing in all this was that the court based its ruling on an existing law (defining marriage as between one man and one woman)...

Bill Maher, whom some say is a comedian – I wouldn't know; I don't recall ever having heard him and this quote of his certainly is not funny – aired his views recently, saying in part: "We are a nation that is unenlightened because of religion. I do believe that. I think that religion stops people from thinking. I think it justifies crazies. I think flying planes into a building was a faith-based initiative. I think religion is a neurological disorder. If you look at it logi-cally, it's something that was drilled into your head when you were a small child. It certainly was drilled into mine at that age." So Bill apparently "undrilled" himself and replaced that knowledge with a vacuum...

From what we knew of the Scott Peterson situation, justice was served. He may (note the uncertainty) be exe-cuted in the next 20 or so years! We are certainly glad the trial is over...

Bishop Gene Robinson, the Episcopal Church's first openly Sodomite bishop, indignantly declared: "We have

absolutely no indication of Jesus' sexual orientation. Absolutely none. Therefore, it would be totally inappropriate for me to speculate about it." But here is what God says about Sodomy: "If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them" (Leviticus 20:13). And about Jesus it says: "... Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth" (I Peter 2:221-22). Surely it shouldn't take a rocket scientist to discern the sinless Son of God's sexual orientation!...

Linda Chavez got it right: "Modesty used to be considered a natural female attribute. No more. Just take a look around next time you're at the mall. With warm weather on the way, belly buttons will be popping out everywhere, and thighs will be very much on display, even in church. Back in the day, a pair of tight jeans was enough to earn a girl a bad reputation. Now slutty has gone Main Street. ... Many studies show that promiscuous behavior entails greater psychological costs for even the most 'liberated' women."...

Take it from the Chief (U.S. President Teddy Roosevelt): "There are those who believe that a new modernity demands a new morality. What they fail to consider is the harsh reality that there is no such thing as a new mo-rality. There is only one morality. All else is immorality."...

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em, right? Georgia, Illinois and North Dakota want to legalize on-line gambling in their States. Since an excess of $200 million is bet on on-line poker every day, they feel legalizing it would help their tax revenue. A host of gamblers’ kids will go to bed hungry either way – although legalization would probably increase the number...

Here’s another reason women don’t belong participating in men’s heavy contact sports. In the Denver Golden Gloves competition, Heather Schmitz slugged Becky Zerlentes. She knocked her out. I mean, really out! The funeral was three days later…

Charge the whole school board with "contempt." Fine 'em. Throw 'em into jail! They are guilty of "calculated un-American and immoral conduct to embarrass, hinder or obstruct the court in the administration of justice," so said Joe Cook, the executive director of Louisiana's ACLU. What was wrong? Another school shooting? A dismissal of an entire high school faculty without warning? No, when an announcer was late for a high school basketball game, a student took the mike and offered a prayer for the safety and well-being of the teams. Probably the kid did-n't even know he was "establishing" a religion with his simple prayer (as the ACLU absurdly claimed)...

Capital punishment? The judge in the Terri Schiavo case ordered her feeding tube (the only tube in her body – she was NOT on life supports) removed at 1 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on March 18, giving the exact date and the exact time. It sounded like a judge sentencing a murderer to execution, didn't it? In one sense it was, but Terri had committed no crime...

A couple in the Pacific Northwest, who will remain nameless here, spent $45,000 giving their sick golden re-triever, Comet, a stem-cell transplant as a cancer cure. Their puppy love we don't doubt; just their values.

 

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