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Lord, we thank thee for this food this day which comes to us from the misery of animals in large animal confinement operations, and from the chemical toilet which is modern farm soil, sold to us cheaply through subsidised ag policy which destroys foreign ag economies contributing to starvation in developing nations but enriches US commodity brokers like my uncle seated on the Chicago Board of Trade.

And Lord thank you for the clothes we wear, so affordable to us by the long hours and low wages of child slave labor…

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Is trophy hunting okay for a Christian?

No.

For starters I’ll share my journey as it relates to the ethics of killing anything. Since my dad was killed violently and then watching my mom go painfully slow, and after countless death notifications with the police department and s many hard funeral in my decades as a pastor, and considering my lung disease and facing my mortality, and studying the senseless loss of innocent life in all our various war-of-the-day, my view on killing changed. It was fuelled also by a desire to take the non-violence of the Sermon on the Mount serious – didn’t figure Jesus was offering it as a suggestion, or optional for extra credit.

Over time I lost a desire to kill anything. So I started to push back against violence in society where ever I could – fighting cage fighting in the legislature, and as many know I entirely changed my mind on the death penalty and came to believe we ought to teach our kids it’s never okay to kill. It will increasingly become a topic I comment on how this whole red-state, red-blood, red-meat, Cross yourself and pile’em high, ammo and Bibles thing in our churches really is so unChristlike. God comes to the aid of those who are weak in battle not those who trust in their chariots and horses.

These days I marvel at animal beauty and diversity and enjoy their personalities and all that prompts me to turn to the Creator of Life in gratitude and worship. Jesus said look at the birds because they will reveal something about God to you. He did not say shoot the birds. My increasing love for life in its most vulnerable forms changed my view of hunting too. I’m not against responsible hunting for you or others, just saying that personally, I’m done with it. But I have come out strongly against safari hunting and trophy hunting as anything ethically justifiable for a Christian.

Deuteronomy 22:6 revealed to me the concern God has for animals: “If you come across a bird nest beside the road, either in a tree or on the ground, and the mother is sitting on her young or on the eggs, do not take the mother with the young…. so that it may go well with you and you may live a long life.”

I began to note the capacity in animals to respond to God… “Praise the Lord from the earth, you great sea creatures and all ocean depths… [Praise the Lord] wild animals and all cattle, small creatures and flying birds…” Psalm 148:7, 10.

Small creatures and flying birds… like fox and pheasants? Note to self; that text is not one to pull out if asked again to give the breakfast devotional at the Fellowship of Christian Sportsman’s Pheasant Hunt.

A book also shifted my thinking on animal cruelty and animal misery and abuse in modern agriculture. It’s not some liberal PETA book. It was written by a Sarah Palin speechwriter. Dominion: The Power of Man, the Suffering of Animals and the Call to Mercy, Matthew Scully states: “Go to the largest livestock operation, search out the darkest and tiniest stall or pen, single out the filthiest, most forlorn little lamb or pig or calf, and that is one of God’s creatures you’re looking at, morally indistinguishable from your beloved Fluffy or Frisky.”

A longing in me to see God’s kingdom come on earth drew me to the passages that describe that time to come when we aren’t at odds with the animal world. I figure, why wait till then?? I’d think animals didn’t run away when Jesus walked by, shouldn’t they recognize Him in us when we walk by?…. “And in that day I will make a covenant for them with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven, and with the creeping things of the ground; and I will break the bow and the sword and the battle out of the earth, and will make them lie down in safety. And I will betroth thee unto me forever; yea, I will betroth thee unto me in righteousness, and in justice, and in loving kindness, and in mercies.” Hosea 2:18-19

In his extensive Dogmatics on The Doctrine of Creation, Karl Barth reminded us God the Creator did not originally intend for animals to be our food; “Whether or not we find it practical or desirable, the diet assigned to men and beasts by God the Creator is vegetarian. This makes it clear that the supremacy given to man over animals is not one of life and death. Man does not enjoy any capital jurisdiction.”

Yes, that changed after the Flood, even after the Flood when killing animals for sacrifice and food was permitted, Barth contends “the prohibition of homicide and eating the blood of animals will be a reminder that the life of another being does not belong to other living beings but to God alone.” For Barth, “the introduction of capital jurisdiction between creature and creature, will not in any sense signify a kind of divine submission to creaturely degeneration.” In regards to the subsequent legitimisation of animal sacrifice, Barth says God now accepts “the surrender of the life of the animal for that of man” as “a substitutionary sign” in the “reconciliation thereby signified.”

David Clough writes: “…human beings may use their superfluity for food but should not wilfully destroy them; in relation to other animals, Barth says they can be killed only as a matter of necessity, and then as a sacrificial act with gratitude and repentance. In a modern context where few humans need to kill other creatures for food, this is a radical ethical stance.”

The reason I have all this handy is I have written on my love and regard for Animals in an essay elsewhere. Here are the opening lines of that essay….

Meet Gordon Howie. A visit to his United States Senate campaign website and you would first notice his campaign bumper sticker slogan; God, Guns & Gordon. Click on the tab for videos and up comes a god tube . com link to his video: “Take a World Hunting Tour With Gordon Howie.” The six and a half minute clip shows dozens of still photos of Gordon all over the world holding rifles or his bow, standing or kneeling, but always smiling next to the corpse of every conceivable animal one can legally shoot with a gun or a bow; deer, fox, coyote, rabbit, mountain goat, bighorn sheep, antelope, sables and roans, gazelles and African dik-diks, spiral-horned kudo, a half a dozen different bears, leopards, mountain lions, moose, plains buffalo, zebra, and various sub-Saharan wild boars.

An additional feature in the video is the background music of Gordon singing Christian country music songs, recording being another one of his pastimes, actually one of his ministries. The photos advance every three seconds and there are enough hunting pictures to require the entire audio of three of Gordon’s songs. While he sings “I’m going home to be with Jesus” the viewer sees dozens of animals who Gordon recently sent on ahead of him. It is not clear what putting a video compilation of decades of safari hunts on a campaign website is supposed to communicate about a political candidates’ philosophy of governance except perhaps it does communicate something of his understanding, or misunderstanding, of the dominion mandate of Genesis one.

Here is that video to which I’m referring:  Take a World Hunting Tour With Gordon Howie

I love everything about Charles Spurgeon and have been a big fan for my entire ministry life. In fact, I’m related to him – five generations back. My great grandmother was a Spurgeon. So to cast him here in a negative light isn’t something I do lightly.

On Sunday September 5, 1855 this famous and very fruitful nineteenth century mega-church pastor, the one we call the Prince of Preachers, preached a message simply titled Election. In his third point he commented on Evolution which of course became very popular in his day…

Years ago we thought the beginning of the world was when Adam came upon it; but we discovered that thousands of years before that God was preparing chaotic matter to make it a fit abode for man, putting races of creatures upon it, who might die and leave behind the marks of his handiwork and marvelous skill, before he tried his hand on man.

Frankly, it baffles me that he said this because it so blatantly contradicts other passages I know he wouldn’t budge on. If indeed there were millions of years of extinction, death and killing before sin entered the world through Adam then all that is in Romans 5:12f about death entering the world through Adam becomes entirely false. Certainly Spurgeon wouldn’t toss aside Romans five to accommodate scientific theory with it’s fantastic speculations and faith-based impossible odds and so I’m left to think he didn’t think through the fact that without Genesis, there is no need for Jesus.

What if?

Here we had an opportunity for nineteenth century mega-churches and very popular ministers on both sides of the Atlantic to stand up and smack down an anti-god, anti-life ideology in it’s infancy. Who knows, they did influence many key men who did go on to shape the world, so what’s to say they wouldn’t have influenced a few key university founders and professors on this issue? Instead, Darwinism began to dominate and today Darwinism has resulted in many millions being exterminated and millions more turning from God entirely. Sadly, kids today are taught they are just the next accidental and random mutation in an unguided evolutionary process. Instead of a teaching a concern for the most vulnerable in society, we teach survival of the fittest as a fixed rule of life.

Why don’t big churches take on big issues? To some extent they do; poverty, clean water, human trafficking to name a few. But we are really selective with our salt and our light is notably intermittent. Issues like evolution, abortion and marriage are left alone. Or how about how violence in society is escalating? Why don’t big churches take on these big issues too? One reason is pastors fear their churches won’t be big for long if they venture into things controversial. Pastor, if this is your concern I’d ask what other passages are you avoiding so as to keep people in their seats? My story is that when I started speaking out on big issues my church grew – people today are looking for spiritual and moral leadership. There is an enormous moral leadership vacuum today and the truth is, someones worldview is going to shape this next generation, the only question is whose?

Losing more than we’ve saving

One of the concerns is that these issues are a diversion from the Gospel and our primary task of saving souls. However, think of how many millions have been killed by the tentacles of social Darwinism and its offshoot “favored race” eugenics fueling various atrocities and holocausts. Think of how many more millions are headed to hell because they’ve graduated our universities entirely secularized. Spurgeon spoke to an impressive 10,000 in his church week after week and many thousands were saved. However, because he and others like him did not take on this big issue it just may be that millions more were lost forever.

The Gospel is more than just getting people to heaven. The message of forgiveness of sin is just the door into the kingdom. And though Jesus said “my kingdom is not OF this world” his kingdom is absolutely IN this world. While pastors today are working hard to get people to heaven, Jesus is chompin’ at the bit to return to the earth. Heaven as we know it today is temporary, a place of rest and reward. However, we will be raised and return– we come back! –that’s the classic Christian Hope. Until then, Jesus taught us to pray on earth as it is in heaven. That means part of our task is to bring heaven’s culture and values to earth.

Do we believe the Bible speaks to all of life or don’t we?

Today, traditional values are being undermined and marriage and family are being re-defined… all on our watch. It’s not hate to love only what God loves and then champion it with boldness. Do we believe the Bible speaks to all of life or don’t we? The Bible has much to say about the economy, about devalued currency, about debt- borrower/lender nations, about working for what we eat as opposed to entitlement mentalities, about healthcare, care for the elderly, good and bad presidents/kings, immigration, crime, punishment, prisons and justice, the value of human life, fatherlessness, marriage, etc, etc. The Bible has a public and a private theology and we ought to preach more than messages pertaining to just our personal relationship with Jesus.

Pastors, I have a suggestion for a book to put on your summer reading list. It’s called A City on a Hill: How Sermons Changed the Course of American History. America does have a long history of pastors shaping the conversation. Don’t worry about the IRS, you can talk about any issue you want from the pulpit and you should. Pastor, are your sermons changing history?

There is lots of talk these days about people’s views on marriage evolving. We are fools if we think marriage evolution stops at gay marriage. If this is all evolving, who’s to say this or that can’t marry what or whom they love? When marriage becomes anything, it becomes nothing. Maybe preachers should look ahead prophetically at marriage evolution and what that means for society.

A Prophetic Preventative Role or a Pastoral Consoling Role?

Another hero of mine, Dietrich Bonhoeffer famously said the task of the Church is not just to tend the victims run over by the wicked wheel of society, the task of the Church is to drive a spoke in the wheel itself. In trying to stop Hitler, he did that with his life. Today pastors need to decide if they are called to a prophetic and preventative role or merely a pastoral role tending victims wounds. Are we only called to comfort or are we called to confront cause factors? When our nation experiences a horrific shooting, pastors shift into comfort and consolation mode. Wouldn’t it be better to be preventative and prophetically decry violent movies, video games and violent sports like cage-fighting, or whatever else and use our influence to champion Sermon on the Mount non-violence?

America had a prophetic voice like Amos in Martin Luther King Jr.. America today needs an Amos! “When disaster comes to a city, has not the Lord caused it?” (3:6)  “I withheld rain… struck your fields and vineyards…  sent plagues… yet you have not returned to me…” People today wonder what the heck is going on. We need to do more than just rightly divide the Word, we need to rightly interpreting the times. America needs an Amos who can rightly interpret the times, prophetically.

This summer I’m ramping up for a series I’m calling Hot Potatoes. Week after week the plan is to talk about a variety of issues most churches won’t touch with a ten foot pole. Stay tuned for more on that series.

Been busy- so, this is a week late and my friend Father Timothy Fountain beat me to the punch. I’ve noted several times on my other blog that we are praying for God’s mercy in the Gulf with regard to the oil spill. This is the jist of the prayer I’ve posted a couple times already and have been praying publicly and privately:

We are praying fervently that God would have mercy on us in relation to the BP oil spill in the Gulf; specifically that he’d release wisdom to plug the leak and creative technologies to clean it up, and that he’d expose what he needs to expose right now in our hearts and especially in our corporate and national leaders.

Now the New York Times reports the oil spill is vanishing fast. Apparently God has been answering our prayers in a way far beyond what we can ask or imagine. One of the main causes of the dissipation is the presence of oil eating bacteria in the Gulf water. In response to that news Father Tim posts…  “Dare I say that lots of people have been praying?”  In the comment string following Father Tim’s post, our yet unbelieving far far left of center friend Cory at Madville Times writes… “Tim, is that headline saying what I think it’s saying?”  Father Tim responds in part in this way:

Cory – people of faith will consider unexpected improvement a blessing and an answer to prayer. Favorable natural phenomena and successful human effort are not ignored – in fact they are the primary means through which God would be understood to answer prayer in most faith traditions.

Cory thanked him and noted that was the thoughtful answer he was looking for. Here was my contribution to the discussion:

Tim – You beat me to it on this post. I’ve been busy, but not to busy to notice all those who are now praising mother nature, micro-bacteria and the tiniest members of the ecosystem! And who can we thank for that perfectly ordered natural healing design? That’s right… Darwin! O wait, he’s dead.  I lack the blind faith the evolutionists possess… and I chuckle when people praise the ecosystem instead of the one who ordered it perfectly. I can’t even look at a tiny little bird without thinking of the stunning foolishness of those who swallow the dangerous delusion that it is a product of uber-billions of years of unguided random mutations. [It’s dangerous because the ideology devalues human life and holocausts and genocide have been the historical result of the deception that some are more human than others – and that only the more fit should be allowed to survive. And, teaching it to kids communicates they are accidental, just the next random mutation, and we have no intrinsic value. Cory will likely take these words and try to make a campaign issue out of them for me. I think we ought to teach evolution as one of the theories explaining origins and point out it’s both unproven and flawed.]

I am grateful for the legislators in LA who, painfully aware of the arrogant emptiness of the ideas of man, had the humility and wisdom to ask for Divine Aid.  [It would now be appropriate for a Louisiana legislator to call for a Day of Thanksgiving in gratitude to God for saving us from ourselves. If it’s appropriate for us to bestow our gratitude and honor any earthly scientist for their great contribution, it’s appropriate to thank and give due honor to the Grand Architect of the Universe for having the foresight to hardwire the creation to heal itself. Too bad he didn’t think to hardwire the universe to also deal with human Co2 emissions😉 Perhaps Al Gore will save us there.]

…Though this nation deserves no favors from heaven, we continue to pray God’s mercy on every living thing in the Gulf. And we pledge to better steward the wonders of his creation.

Had God prompted a scientist somewhere to solve this problem I would have been praising God while the world bestowed awards and honors on the man. Surely God wearies of the boasting of man. These micro-members of the ecosystem have risen up as one of the little mercies of God and ironically, as simple as they are, they are presently confounding the wise. That too is evidence God is behind this dissipation. [Don’t think for a moment that this God who knows when every sparrow falls to the ground has no concern for the masses of oil-covered pelicans.]

All week I’ve been focused on the notion of “little mercies.” In terms of the millions of gallons of oil disappearing I’m not really sure this qualifies as a “little” mercy. But it seems appropriate to designate oil-eating, micro-bacteria as a little mercy.

A couple passages of Scripture come to mind. There is the story Jesus told of the ten being healed of leprosy and only one returning to give thanks. Maybe the others were praising natural processes. What I like to show people are the dangers of ingratitude and how big a deal this is to God when we boast in ourselves.  In the oft-quoted Romans 1:21-25 passage about the iniquity in the world, few notice how fundamental ingratitude was the issue and not iniquity. It was because of ingratitude that God turned the world over to it’s own destructive course:

For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

When the military honor guard officer handed me the flag that draped my father’s coffin, he looked me in the eye and said with these words… “On behalf of a grateful nation…”  For sure our nation is filled with gratitude for those who give their life in service of their country. But beyond that, I’m not sure it’s true we are a grateful nation any more.

One other thought… recently I dropped a quote elsewhere on this blog regarding how American Christianity has digressed to nothing more than a “moralistic therapeutic deism.” In light of that, it’s no surprise that most church leaders are silent on these kinds of topics. As they have resorted to offering popular therapy over unpopular theology, they’ve digressed into deism and no longer have a theology of a God who acts or personally intervenes in our world today.

Today I woke up and decided to send out a little tweet (which quickly goes to my Facebook page) and I’m told this little tweet was a bit cryptic. So, since I’m not limited here to 140 characters, I thought I’d explain myself. But first, here’s the tweet:

WAS thinkin Urbana w/caleb insteada Onething cause KH/I, KHs dad went 80s/60s. Not goin aftr seein religusleft influence

And, here’s my explanation which I also dropped on my Facebook:

Urbana is the Intervarsity Christian Fellowship sponsored missions conference for college students that has been held every three years since 1946. It’s held in Urbana IL, thus the name. Kristen/I went there in 1984 and 1987 (Billy Graham spoke) and we were powerfully impacted. Kristen’s dad, now a retired pastor, went as a college student in 1962ish. So I thought to break from our norm (going to OneThing in KC) and take Caleb (age 19) to Urbana – figured it would be a three generation family tradition and a good way to add fuel to his fire to reach the world.

Urbana has always been about reaching the lost, aka evangelism, and the call to go into all the world with the Gospel. And I can see from the materials that is still the central thrust of Urbana. But now there is a mixture in the message. Now the gospel includes “the Mission of Healthcare” both domestic and international. And, “environmental stewardship.” Shane Claiborne is speaking.

Don’t misunderstand, creation care is vital and Biblical. And medical missions is too. But I’m not dumb, this is a chance to further hype the global warming hoax. And domestic health care? You can be sure the religious-left friends of Jim Wallis will be waxing eloquent about our “moral duty” to pass Obamacare and there will be no tolerance (or platform time) for anyone who points out the evil “details” of letting the elderly die and funding the unbridled slaughter of the unborn.

A missionary to mother nature is more welcome at Urbana now than a missionary to the unborn.

The hand of God is on OneThing. I’m not sure what has gotten hold of Urbana.

Felt like we had a video production company here this morning. Had to prepare another short video of me greeting the folks back home at CATG for this Fourth of July weekend. And, Thomas has some great video stuff on his blog from yesterday. Here is his toboggan video. And he has new video installment for his blog series – What Should We Get Pastor Dennis? We frequently find stuff that makes us think of Pastor Dennis when we are in gift shops.  Also, Thomas is now offering vitally important Tourism Do’s and Don’ts tips on his blog.

Kaitlyn has some great pics on her latest post, especially the last pic of the Swiss flag outlining the mountain. I think it’s a great shot and we, being puzzle people, just may turn that one into a puzzle. Kristen hit a home run on a meal the other night and has a post about this delicious German meatball thing she whipped up.

Thanks to Caleb for putting together the following video clip from our visit yesterday to the Guinness Book of World Records Largest Rolling Ball Clock.

This clock is found in the Bucherer Store in Lucerne, Switzerland. The clock is four stories high. It runs on rolling glass marbles and kinetic energy. It took twelve people an entire year to make it. Here are some more details:

One marble ends up in the ring every minute, until 60 of them finally make up an hour. A polar opposite to this ongoing motion is provided by a giant crystal ball on the ground floor, which oscillates once every quarter of an hour. The mechanical components, all perfectly geared to one another, are fascinatingly combined to create a clock system that is precise, completely self-contained and infinite. The installation extends to all four floors in the Bucherer store, is 11.6 m (38 ft) high and 6 m (almost 20 ft) wide. In the entire system, 150 crystal balls measuring 30, 40 and 150 mm (1.2, 1.6 and 5.9 in) run along 297.8 m (977 ft) of track.

More pictures can be found here. Check them out as they have pictures of how all the parts are handmade.

Those following the blog know I’ve posted a few times so far on Swiss watches and clocks – banks, army knives and watches are huge things here. I’ve learned these are “time measurement systems.” I’ll get right to the point… as big and mind boggling as this huge clock is, it only measures God’s time. Try to wrap your mind around the Providence of God and you’ll truly be blown away. But even in the natural order, every time measurement system invented is a mere human attempt to capture what no amount of random unguided chance could have possibly arranged and set in such complex yet precise and perpetual motion. Jeremiah 31:35 tells us that it is God above who “appointed the sun, who decrees the moon and stars to shine at night, who stirs the seas so that its waves roar.” Job 37:12 tells us how God is the One who set the elements of the earth in motion and they do “whatever he commands.” The planets, the seasons, the tides of the seas – he’s behind it.

Let this thought speak to you… he’s never late. But, it is possible to not “keep in step” with Him. Make sure you do. Synchronize your life in Him. Seek to know and discern his shifts in times and seasons. Check out pages 86-90 in my Momentum book for how to discern the sacred rhythms and pace of the Spirit. You’ll find what is written there no where else – I’ve looked – and, not finding anything, I decided to write this critical stuff down myself. You’re welcome.  There is a “moment” in momentum’s development that we must discern. Many are at a spiritual standstill today because they are oblivious to discerning these key moments.

I think I’m going to preach on this topic this weekend.  Read this. And, then read how the adversary tries to change God’s times and seasons (or at least get us out of sych with them).  Here’s a great clip for those of you who want to reflect on this more.

The forecast today was 70% rain – we discovered that means seventy percent of today it was pouring down rain. We now have forty Swiss franc’s worth of umbrellas to bring home.

Also, I discovered that if you keep driving for a while after the gas light comes on… it starts flashing at you. Maybe some of you who love to live close to the edge thought the rest of us already knew that. Not so.

We also learned that if you buy a can of corn in Germany, the words “4 stück” on the side of the can means it’s not kernals but four ears still on the cob. All would have been well if the can had 5 stück, but 4 stück means that one of the five of us went without.

Zurich 091

Among other things today we went back to Zurich to the Beyer watch store.  It’s like there is a magnet drawing me there. Here’s a picture of the front of it and here’s what our travel book says about this location; “Banhofstrasse – some call it the finest street in Europe -along its path is an impressive display of wealth – the head offices of the “Gnomes of Zurich” (the five largest banks in Switzerland) – this is the center of Switzerland’s opulence – everything you can never afford to buy is sold there.”

Zurich 092

Since I can’t buy I decided to covet instead. You know, covet, as in the tenth commandment thou-shalt-not-covet. Not to worry, I hardly covet a thing, ever.  But watches are hard for me.  And this one in particular kept winking at me as I went by. I think it’s The One. Kristen says Dream on, she’s way out of my league.

Zurich 093

I have no idea if anyone else is interested in this but I for those who are I want to show you another amazing clock from the Beyer museum.

This one is called Pendulette de table avec Planetarium (aka Planetarium Table Clock). It keeps time.  AND, the earth rotates around the sun in perfect real time.  AND, the other nine planets rotate as well, around, up, down in relation to the etched constellations of precisely positioned stars on the crystal globe, which if you are smart enough will reveal what season it is. (You can see the stars better in this pic).  I have trouble getting my watch’s date feature to not switch at noon each day and here’s some guy back in 1770 had the whole universe gracefully moving in precision.

Zurich 084

Here’s the thing – the universe is a billion times more complex than this mind blowing clock which is unquestionably the product of an amazing mind. I don’t know, I guess I just don’t have the faith to believe even this level of complexity could be in any way random. Honestly I felt like worshipping God after I saw this clock.  And to think kids today are being taught they are just the next mutation in a unguided process. Sad.

I’m teaching my kids they are no mistake but rather they were conceived in the mind of God before the foundations of the world (as the Bible says) and God’s dream for their life only manifest in the flesh at conception.

My kids wonder if anyone else out there besides me who thinks of ways to hammer both on the theory of evolution and abortion while wandering around a clock shop.

We travel all week starting tomorrow AM and are not sure where along the way we’ll have internet. Stay tuned.

God revealed himself to me today as Creator while I was sitting outside in a lawn chair. Thomas and I picked a little group of trees to sit under – Thomas has plans for that spot as soon as he gets an extra $47.

I looked to my right to see one seed left on this dandelion. I thought to myself, “there is no freakin’ way that evolved. Oh the fantasy life of the evolutionists! To think that the first dandelion plant had the sense and ability to perpetuate itself, and then the genious to produce near-weighless seeds atop a launch pad each specially rigged to a umbrella/parachute-like lift system designed to catch the wind to transport the seed… ugh!” A fool says in his heart there is no God. If this doesn’t reveal the brilliance of a Creator I’m not sure what does.

That this was designed by a Designer is a plain fact – you hear that science community? Fact! Your theory is ridiculous fantasy. It’s remarkable to me that there is even a debate on our origins. The existence of a Creator is not religious dogma, it’s just a plain-as-day, open-your-blind-eyes fact. There isn’t even a remote chance this seed or anything else evolved. Please don’t offend my intelligence or force the children of the world to accept your fairy tale theories.

The US Census Bureau reports the world’s 6,666,666,666th person was born on May 10. Of course, overpopulation.net is reacting to this by bemoaning we have now “passed our sustainability” and that “reckless breeding humans” are responsible for the inevitable downfall of the species because we have ignored alarming facts about sustainable food limits that the earth produces relative to population. The Sierra Club wants to re-double its promotion of population control.

It’s hugely disappointing to me that key evangelical leaders like mega-church pastor Rick Warren and Christianity Today editor David Neff are signing things like the Evangelical Climate Initiative which was largely funded ($475,000) by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. The Hewletts are major contributors to abortion and population control efforts.

All this panic over more people on the planet is soundly debunked by Steve Mosher’s latest book – Population Control—Real Costs, Illusory Benefits. Mosher leads the Population Research Initiative which is dedicated to objectively presenting the truth about population-related issues, and to reversing the trends brought about by the myth of overpopulation. PRI is a growing, global network of pro-life groups spanning over 30 countries. Get this… to date they have successfully eliminated $750 million in U.S. tax dollars to population control groups or programs. Praise God for PRI and Steve Mosher!

You can read a great review of this new book here. In case you are pressed for time, I’ll paste a taste here. The very first line of the book reads… “we have all grown up on on a poisonous diet of overpopulation propaganda.”

Mosher’s book is, first and foremost, an answer to the allegation that the human race is inexorably multiplying, hell-bent toward a giant demographic cliff like so many lemmings. The numbers show that the world is not, has never been, nor ever shall be, overpopulated. In fact, according to the world’s experts–even the ones advocating population control–birthrates around the world are dropping at a precipitous rate. The book thus torpedoes the lifeboat scenario, which argued that in order to survive, we had to throw some of the earth’s passengers overboard. But it is much more than this. The history of the population control movement is replete with human rights abuses. Those who were made to walk the plank of abortion, sterilization, and contraception–all for the supposed good of humanity–have some horrific tales to tell.

These people hate people. Don’t believe me? John Muir, the founder of Sierra Club had this to say about more people… “Man is always and everywhere a blight on the landscape.” John David the editor of EarthFirst agrees… “Human beings, as a species, have no more value than slugs.” Paul Watson, the founder of Greenpeace, said… “I got the impression that instead of going out to shoot birds, I should go out and shoot the kids who shoot birds.” Or this from Paul Taylor, author of Respect for Nature, “Given the total, absolute disappearance of Homo sapiens, then not only would the Earth’s community of Life continue to exist, but in all probability, its well being enhanced. Our presence, in short, is not needed.”

The Word of God says the polar opposite… that the redemption of the created order is dynamically tied up in the redemption of man. That all creation is presently waiting for us to get right with God. That the creations liberation from its “bondage to decay” awaits us. The salvation of the earth is not in the elimination of humankind but rather in the redemption of humankind. God has never rescended the mandate to “be fruitful and multiply.”

If you’ve yet to hear my message this past week on this subject you can download the podcast here. It’s titled “Changing Climates” and is about Rizpah in 2 Samuel 21. The key points are…

1. The number one thing we can do for the creation is acknowledge the Creator.
2. Blood pollution, more often than not, is the culprit in any climate crisis.
3. It takes an atonement to redeem and heal the land.
4. God uses intercessors to change the atmosphere.

Not recorded on the audio version are my comments on the We Get It Campaign which was launched on Friday. I encourage everyone to read the declaration and consider signing it and joining with others who are committed to finding pro-life strategies to care for the environment.

This past week alone I got sermon feedback from people in Washington DC, Hawaii, California and Iraq. Oh the wonders of the podcast. I’m told in three of these places my “Origins: God’s Green Earth” series is making the rounds and is quite a hit. Of course I appreciate feedback that is positive. Interesting to me, I’m getting triple the feedback I normally get in a message series and we are giving away hundreds of CDs. One lady on Sunday, a visitor, took a handful and plans to send them to her Ph.D microbiologist son with hopes that he’ll make room for God in his life. This morning I was mapping out the remaining messages in the series and had the thought… why quit so soon? There is so much more to say on this theme. I do believe it has end time relevance.

Also I know that those of you who attend CATG each weekend may never be able to run for President unless you disavow the crazy politically-incorrect things I’m saying right now and have said over the years. Actually we do need people in our midst to rise up and govern – that’s the Creation Mandate – rulership, dominion over the created order. Go for it! I promise to not pull a Rev. Wright.

Big thanks to my friend Steven M. Collins for this guest post. As usual, Steve opens the Scriptures in untraditional ways showing things we wonder why we didn’t see all along. Recently Steve gave me a preview of a fascinating paper he was about to post on his website – “Is the earth 6000 years old.” I’ve linked to the full paper here and also at the end of his guest post. After reading his paper a couple of times, I asked him to write a guest post here to sum that up and that is what is spelled out below. Steve lives here in Sioux Falls with his wife and family, has written five books on Israel, and is one of our life group leaders. More on his books and his blog on his website. Pray for Steve’s health – he’s unable to travel and take speaking engagements right now. Lord, touch this brother!


Pastor Steve, I am really enjoying your message series on “Origins: God’s Green Earth.” I agree it is critically-important that we understand the foundations of our beginnings in order to truly understand our Creator and his purpose for our lives. As you have been giving your “Origins” series, which has a strong emphasis on Genesis 1, I have been putting the finishing touches on an article which complements the subject matter of your messages. My article addresses the “Creation vs. Evolution” debate from an entirely new perspective.

My article strongly affirms a literal understanding and application of the scriptures, and I believe that by combining the account in Genesis 1 with creation accounts in other books of the Bible (Job, Isaiah, Ezekiel, etc.), we can actually reconcile the differences between the scientific community and the Christian community regarding the origins of the earth and life itself. We know that God has eternally existed. Have the creative efforts of an ageless Creator (in the physical world) been limited to only the most-recent 6,000 years, as many “young earth” Christians maintain? Read the rest of this entry »

Al Gore is a prophet who lives wealthy and hypocritically off the offerings of his followers. Global warming has become a religious belief – there are believers and unbelievers, infidels and apostates, proselytes, evangelists, hypocrites and corruption. There are rituals, creeds and divination. There is blasphemy and “truth” albeit inconvenient. There is preaching, prophecy and indoctrination. There are disciples (the media), and the professors have become the high priests and apostles of evolution. Their textbooks are now Holy Writ. The faithful vow to follow no matter what the true facts may show. Abortion is the sacrament. A global Crusade is underway with converts and casualties. A Jihad has been called against the only thing in the created order that bears the image of God. The salvation of the planet is only in the extermination of people.

So much for the “separation of church and state.” So much for NOMA – the “non-overlapping magisteria” of science and religion. But then again, what do you expect, this isn’t science anymore, these are faith-based initiatives.

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