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Friends, it’s time to stand with Israel! You’ll hear more about this soon but for now, please venture over to Facebook and hit “like” if you’d like to be numbered among those who support Israel. And share this on your Facebook page or Twitter to spread the word.

Our hope is to build a strong coalition of support from South Dakota. This is not a Christian group, per se, and certainly we won’t be pushing any particular flavor of theology or prophecy. The idea for this actually comes from my friend Stephen Rosenthal who for years has been a leader in the Jewish community and organizations in our state. He has shared his vision for this with me and I assured him I’m fully on board and I know many others who will be as well. It’s also non-partisan.

If you aren’t on Facebook and would like to be included in future updates about South Dakotans for Israel, send an email with your contact information to Stephen Rosenthal, rosenthal.stephen@gmail.com or to me, stevehickey67@gmail.com .

A friend of mine wrote the following little paragraph and sent it to me with this PDF: United States-Israel Enhanced Security Act of 2012.

Obama signed this Act into law on the weekend of Tish B’Av 9 –date of the “bad report” from the 10 spies, date of destruction of Solomon’s Temple in 586 BC, date of destruction of Herod’s Temple in 70 AD, date England expelled the Jews in 1290 AD, date Spain expelled the Jews in 1492, the date WW1 began, the date of the “Final Solution” of Hitler, and the date Ariel Sharon abandoned Jewish settlements in Gaza.

It is now official US statutory law to divide the land of Israel.

If a building has not collapsed on you, it is a merciful call to repent. Luke 13:4-5”. – John Piper Twitter feed, 9/11/12

The theology behind that statement is: when disasters happen, it’s not why did some die? It’s more the question… we all deserve death, why do the rest of us or, why do so many survive? It’s a mercy that life goes on considering our national rejection of God.

Lots of “Remember 911″ and “Never Forget” posts today on Facebook and Twitter. Of course we never will and we are praying today for those who lost loved ones that day.

As I was praying for America today I thought I heard a still small “repent or repeat” type word. The Sunday after September 11th, I said “if in six months the only change in our nation is we have tighter airport security then all those people died in vain.” America didn’t turn to God. We responded with a Isaiah 9:9,10-type defiance. Read The Harbinger. So additional shakings have come, economic shakings for example, and more will come. It’s simply Amos 4:6-12. God may not cause every calamity, but he certainly uses them for our good.

At the 9/11 Memorial ceremonies today don’t hold your breath today waiting for our President to say “radical Islam built this” though it certainly did. Obama’s pastor once said “America’s chickens came home to roost.” The Bible has repeated accounts of God lifting the hedge of protection off Covenant nations and letting invading merciless pagan nations be instruments of his judgment. We can’t say for sure can we? Certainly even in judgment there is mercy and I love the stories of angels at Ground Zero and fully believe God’s grace was felt by victims and sufficient in those horrible moments.

I’ve been saying for five years now, America needs an Amos – there is no more relevant book of the Bible to our nation right now than Amos. Amos was prophet to the prosperous northern kingdom, Israel.  Like America, Israel thought they had reached an untouchable status. They were deluded in a false security that all this wealth and nice living can’t be taken away. Wow, were they wrong.

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Friends, what I’m planning to talk about in these next few weeks will forever change your life, your family, your finances, how you feel, etc, etc…. I’m going to talk about self-talk, speaking to your spirit, how we hang ourselves by our words, how to speak life over yourself and over each other, and much more.

The devil is liar and he may plant a thought in our minds but we don’t have to speak it out in agreement. Words are seeds and grow into either good or bad. Since the beginning the serpent has challenged what God says is true: Did God really say?  YES God said it, and we should be repeating what God says about us every day.  The fact is God’s Word coming out of your mouth is just as powerful as God’s Word coming out of his mouth.

You can chart an entirely different course for your life simply by changing what you say. Proverbs 18:21 says “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” James 3 says the tongue is like a rudder on a large ship able to, despite strong winds, turn your life around. Each week we will talk about the tongue and cover a variety of topics from sins of speech like gossip, slander, course joking, exaggerating, complaining to positive confessions, speaking in tongues, and the spirituality of shutting up (radio silence!).

One of the most powerful weapons we have is our confession and so I will be teaching how to write and speak out a daily confession for your life and family. On the back of the weekend bulletin we have printed a daily confession we have prepared for our church and we will be handing out laminated cards with that daily confession printed on them so we can declare it daily for ninety days starting this Sunday. The tongue is number two on a list of the most mentioned body parts in the Bible. The heart is number one. But even there, “out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks.” (Matthew 12:34)

Imagine how your life and our church will be different in ninety days if we daily and boldly speak out what God wills for us!!

Understandably people weary of election season political discourse and perhaps even grow to resent or be turned off by the feisty Facebook/Twitter updates of friends like me who like and post on politics (but mostly faith) more than we like or post on football, fishing, fashion or concerts. Lincoln saw law and constitutional government as a gift from God. It affects everything so I hope you’ll rethink your desire to disengage or despise. You can give it a rest in November.

The Bible is 29% about your individual life, though listening to many pastors today you’d think it was just a big fat self-help book. In reality, 71% of it pertains to laws for healthy societies, good and bad national leaders, foreign and domestic policy. Moses was a governor as was Nehemiah, Abraham the father of nations, the prophets were all national prophets, David and Solomon were kings and Jesus’ kingdom may not have been of this world but it is certainly IN it and increasing until the governments rest on his shoulders.  Jesus said pay your taxes, influence and permeate the whole loaf of society with kingdom leaven, he called Herod a fox, and John the Baptist was beheaded for pointing out adultery in Herod’s household.

The Bible has a lot to say about the treatment of the poor, the elderly, and the immigrant. It talks about social order and lawlessness, morality, economies, about lender and borrower nations, and about devalued currency. It even rebukes the entitlement mentality and says volumes about healthcare – how not to get sick, how to eat, self-control, gluttony, sloth, stress, worry and fear. If America lived by the Bible and abstained from excess in eating, alcohol and immorality, we’d save gazillions in health care costs. Do we or do we not believe the Bible speaks to all of life and society? I know I’m a bit of a broken record but nows the time to engage.

There is spin on both sides but facts are facts so know them. The truth IS out there so don’t be lazy, search it out. The fact check groups are skewed too and they don’t publish public corrections when they are found to be spewing things false. Obama didn’t save the auto industry – so says even the Chicago Tribune. GM still owes 30 of the 50 billion it received – the government (aka the taxpaying public) will lose 25 billion more on the auto industry bailout. The Chevy Volt makes no money and costs the taxpayer hundreds of thousands of dollars per car. And let’s talk about all the businesses that didn’t get bailed out.

Obama didn’t save auto industry jobs as Bill Clinton said. Clinton lied to his wife and was impeached for lying to the American people and though he gave a great speech he’s still not telling the truth. Michelle Obama didn’t grow up poor though she should get an Emmy for her performance the other night portraying the part. Her father made over 50k year in the 1960s. That’s like a $250K salary now.

Obama won by 10 million votes in 2008, 30 million evangelicals didn’t even vote. But we sure love Tim Tebow!!!  You get my point.

I’ll try to not spend the next sixty days bashing the left, I’m not lock in step with the right either. I know polite people know to not talk about religion and politics. I joke that expecting me to be quiet is asking a lot because as a pastor and a legislator I’m physically the embodiment of both these cultural taboos. I’m watching irony, I have a funny bone for sarcasm, critical thinking and being winsome in conversation/debate and articulating traditional values is both an art and takes skill, and as a wordsmith the rhetoric is enjoyable to me. But in relation to the message series I’m starting this weekend I want to make sure I’m speaking blessings over this nation and our government. Most times I don’t stoop to cursing (I’m not referring swear words).

Curses are real- life and death is in the power of the tongue! Here’s the verse that has brought some conviction and correction to me; Proverbs 11:11… “by the BLESSING of the upright the city (or nation) is exalted but it is overthrown by the mouth of the wicked.” Are we speaking blessings over America and our government or are we speaking curses? We may not see ourselves as wicked, after all we are Christians. But our words can be wicked when we say things about our great nation the devil agrees with. So, let’s champion America and call her back to her best! This nation definitely has long history in God and a great destiny in God. Let’s raise our kids to love the country not despise it. We want them to one day lead it.

Another thing. Prayer works and this nation needs to pray the fog of deception lifts. Pray for truth to come forth on both sides. Ask God to expose corruption in a timely way. Just yesterday I prayed God would dispatch angels to come against the thuggery of Obama’s strongman David Axelrod who sent Justice Dept hit men to resurrect an old previously dropped and discarded lawsuit against Gallop when they reported poll numbers not in Obama’s favor. In my view these are crimes against America.

Today we read the EU and the Federal Reserve are making moves to artificially improve the economy. If they proceed, and they will, I consider it the greatest campaign donation in the history of America and of course it benefits Obama. And of course, it comes directly from the dollars being further devalued in your pocket. Pray the moneychangers have the tables turned on them.

And yet another thing… look for God in all of this… he’s there and he has his people there, praying. Even three loud voice votes/boos intended to boot God and Jerusalem from the convention floor didn’t keep him from placing Cardinal Timothy Dolan in place to end the DNC evening with a strong benediction that slammed abortion and upheld moral law. That was awesome.

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