Are Preppers All Crazy?

Donald_Trump_official_portrait
POTUS

Maybe all Preppers aren’t totally screwy.  I think some preparation for the possibility of certain types of natural or man made disaster scenarios are somewhat reasonable.  Weather such as hurricanes have recently devastated significant amounts of our country.  Some people that ignored the hurricane warnings had hurricane parties instead of evacuating from the area.  Those people are now dead.  Even FEMA’s website has prepping instructions for various potential disasters so the government apparently takes prepping seriously.

It is entirely possible in my opinion that larger areas of our country could be affected for longer periods by similar disruption within my lifetime.  For example a simple electromagnetic pulse from a solar storm or from a North Korean nuclear bomb could shut down all of our technology instantly.  The solar storm of 1859 was a recorded event and it is almost certain to happen again.  Life without electricity would be different from the life we now enjoy.  It could take many years for our country to regain electrical power everywhere and that is only one example.

I think everyone should at least take a look at government recommendations for short term disaster prepping.  Most people are psychologically incapable of any type of prepping because they don’t want to admit to themselves that something seriously bad will probably happen.  Even if there is a disaster the government will always save you. Right?

Some major religious groups have organized prepping activities for all scenarios up to doomsday.  The Mormons have a lot of prepping information on the internet and they actively teach prepping for all types of disasters. I don’t believe in Mormon theology but if there is a country-wide disaster for several years their emphasis on prepping may help the Mormon religion survive.  Religious survivalist’s don’t seem to be entirely self consistent.  Money and time spent on prepping can’t be spent on converting other people to your religion during good times.  On the other hand if doomsday happens on schedule your religion would pick up converts.

Most individual non-religious preppers don’t really want to pick up converts after doomsday.  Your chances of survival in a doomsday scenario would go down if you had to take care of unprepared people.  There seems to be a fairly large pre-doomsday prepper industry on the web consisting of books, special food, weapons and other survival gear.   I have seen what is on the web and some of it is kind of entertaining.  It is possible to incorporate some of these items into more common activities such as camping, hunting, or even my favorite gardening.  Personally I’m not a big prepper because fear of the collapse of society doesn’t worry me.  I do kind of get a kick out of some of the items being sold online but I just can’t afford to buy the stuff for my own entertainment.

 

 

 

 

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Do you want a Microchip implanted in you?

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A Wisconsin company is the first in the nation to begin voluntary microchipping of its employees. This allows them to buy things at the company and do various work related activities more easily.  Isn’t that sweet?

Would you like one of these lovely devices implanted in your hand?  It does have a similarity to the Bible verse from Revelation:

 “It also forced all people, great and small, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hands or on their foreheads,17 so that they could not buy or sell unless they had the mark….”

This Wisconsin microchip may not be “the mark” but it can obviously be abused very easily by those who control it once you are stupid enough to implant it in your body.  It makes it easier to monitor and control your actions.  Is that what you want?

How long do you think it will take before it becomes mandatory to have a chip embedded in you with your social security number, insurance details and other critical information in case you want to work, buy or there is a public emergency?

Limits on the Bible

willianharley
My Grandfather and Father

Someone requested that I write a post on what Jesus says about homosexuality, abortion and evolution.  The person dislikes the position that conservative evangelicals generally take on these issues and wants to prove that Jesus didn’t talk directly about these issues himself so they are being blown out of proportion today by Christians.  Of course, he doesn’t believe that any of the Bible is God’s Word but he was insistent that any position on these issues be supported only by direct words from Jesus.

Please pray for this person that he would come to know Jesus as his personal Savior from his sins.  It is written that “Faith can move mountains”.

Jesus said “For verily I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass away, not one jot or one tittle shall in any wise pass from the law till all be fulfilled.”  This statement by Jesus validates the entire Bible as accurate. It is impossible to limit Jesus to simply the words he spoke while on earth because God is not finite. The entire Bible must be taken in context and compared against itself.  You can’t limit the Bible to one isolated section and achieve the results God intended for you.  There are differences of interpretation among various Christian groups on some aspects of the Bible but that is because humans are finite.

Homosexuality and abortion (except to save the mother’s life) are sins that can be forgiven like any other sin.  Jesus said “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”

Evolution is a scientific hypothesis that can’t be reproduced in a controlled manner by scientists and therefore lacks credibility in my view.  Limited evolution that does not change the type of creature can be observed in nature however this does not confirm that life arose spontaneously from nonliving matter. The Bible says :

“For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.”

 

 

Christian Theology Should Control Politics in America?

gramsellnow
My Grandparents

I think it should control politics for pragmatic reasons.  North Korea is a perfect example of what happens when Christian theology has no control of a country’s politics.  The leadership of North Korea is afraid of Christianity because it represents a danger to the ruling elites control of that country.  Christians are routinely murdered for their religion in North Korea.  The former Soviet Union had similar deficiencies and this type of cruel repression seems common in countries guided by atheistic human centered philosophy.  Some misguided liberal atheists in the United States that I have talked with want to eliminate any input from Christian  theology in American politics. They believe that Christians should keep their Christianity in the closet and let them decide how to run the country.  The end result of this pattern would be similar to the old Soviet Union in my opinion.

Christian theology played a pivotal role in the early development of United States government and laws because the vast bulk of the people living here were Christians and most of the founding fathers had a strong Christian influence.  There was no state religion established and minority non-Christian religions were given more protection than in most european countries of the time.   Evils contrary to Christian theology such as slavery and persecution of minorities existed and to a lesser extent still exist today which is another practical reason for Christians to influence politics based on their beliefs.

On a personal level, I don’t want to be killed for my faith when there are ways to prevent it from happening.  Christians should make the attempt to interject their faith in our politics whenever possible to avoid groups similar to Nazi’s, Atheistic Communists, Boko Haram and ISIS from undermining our public institutions such as government.  Just because you think it will never happen in the United States of America doesn’t mean it won’t happen.  Some day it may be necessary to die on the spot if you say you are a Christian in the USA.  People said that Trump would never be chosen as the nominee of the Republican party. Guess what?  It happened.

If Christians follow the words of Jesus they can only have a positive effect on our country’s government and its adherence to good morals and ethics.

Gay marriage and Wedding Cakes….

engelssmall…..I am in favor of allowing secular gay marriage in the United States but I do not recommend gay marriage because it is not condoned by the Bible.  Many secular activities are legal in the United States that the Bible does not condone. I am opposed to forcing people with religious objections to perform any type of services for gay couples at their weddings.  The state should not have the power to force conscientious religious objectors to perform actions contrary to their personal beliefs. Priests and Ministers are not forced to marry anyone that is unwilling to comply with their religion. How can you force a Muslim cake decorator to provide service for a gay wedding and do his best at the job?  Who decides if the service provided is equal to a non gay wedding and how much the legal fine will be if the service isn’t quite up to snuff.

I wouldn’t marry a man because I don’t have any sexual attraction to men so I’ll never have the chance to plan a gay wedding.  Although, a gay man once made a pass at me but he was barking up the wrong tree.  I was surprised at the time because I had no clue my friend was gay but I didn’t have any type of harsh response. After all, you really can’t blame him because I am quite the catch so I had to dash his hopes with some consideration.  I do consider homosexuality to be a sin but so are coveting, adultery, lying, taking God’s name in vain and many other things.  Everyone has sinned so why would I treat him any different than anyone else because I too have sinned.

I think it is unreasonable of any gay couple to pick on a religious cake decorator for the purpose of proving some type of legal point.  If I had to get married again I would be more concerned about picking a cake decorator that could get the job done the way I wanted.  There are plenty of cake decorators that are willing to decorate a gay cake and there are religions that have no objection to gay marriage. If I wanted to marry a man I would simply pick a cake decorator that I liked and was willing to serve a gay wedding.  No one should be forced by the state to do a job that is contrary to their religion just because the state thinks it knows what is best based on a secular philosophy.  Any Judge that fines a person for not doing their job because of a sincere religious objection is in the wrong and should be removed from office.

It is not fair to anyone to force religious people to act against their convictions or to force gays to act like they were heterosexuals.  What does it prove if you can force a person to do something against their will by threats?  Does it make the winner in the conflict feel good that they can inflict their will on the loser?  It doesn’t make the loser into a better person and it will simply cause them to get angry and take actions of a negative nature.

Instead of forcing people to act like we want with threats we should try to persuade them by reason or emotion to our point of view for their own benefit.  It is better to win a friend to your point of view than create an enemy or a martyr against your cause.  The ancient roman empire tried to eradicate Christianity with threats but instead Christianity essentially destroyed the great powerful roman system over a long period of time because it had a message people wanted to hear.  Even though ancient Rome had all kinds of legal homosexuality the Apostle Paul was still a Roman citizen and appealed to Caesar with his legal case.  I have never read that the Apostle Paul tried to prevent legal Roman non-Christian homosexual relationships. The cross used to be a threatening symbol of roman authority but now it is a powerful symbol of Christianity and the empire of Rome is just a distant memory.

The Bible  does not promote homosexual behavior and any Church that does is not Biblical in nature.  It is unacceptable to force a Bible based Church to marry two people of the same sex just as it is unfair to force anyone to attend a particular Church.  There are plenty of religions and secular businesses that will marry two people of the same sex and bake their wedding cake so why can’t gays choose these options instead of trying to destroy the financial lives of people who don’t share their belief system by using the court system?

It is not possible to force Christian business owners to love gays more by ruining their business and in the long run gays are hurting their own agenda by trying to make criminal examples of Christians and others that do not want to bake their cakes.  Personally if I had the skill to bake a cake I would make one for anyone that paid me enough money even if I disagreed with the philosophy behind the cake decorations but that’s just the way God made me.  Although, I would probably charge unreasonably extra for a Nazi or KKK cake.  If cake bakers must bake a cake for a gay couple does that mean they would be legally forced to bake a cake for the Nazi party?  All people should be free to chose who they work for and what they believe without being threatened unfairly by the law.

By the way, the man who thought I was gay and made the pass at me married a woman a few years later. I know the couple has at least one child and they seemed quite happy last time I talked to them eons ago.  I hope they have also put their trust in Christ which I believe is the only answer to any type of sin.  Sin can not be cured by government edicts and governments should not be in the business of telling anyone what type of cakes they need to bake.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Education Should Be Converted to a Total Voucher System in the USA.

cropped-100_0997-e1488588998256  Freedom of choice in education at all levels would improve the lives of all children and their parents.  A total voucher system for educational choices would help to achieve free choice in education for most people.  Obviously, any voucher system would require some type of regulation to insure that teachers receive good compensation and that all types of students receive an acceptable education.  Additional funding per voucher would be needed for special education students and students on an IEP.  Competition for voucher dollars should have a positive effect on the service provided by schools to students and parents.  Religious schools would be able to equally financially compete with state schools which would increase diversity of thought and quality of education in my opinion.

Many European nations have given full or partial government payments to various types of private schools chosen by parents so a total voucher system in the USA would not be that unique.  South Korea and Australia also have some programs of this nature.  These countries are first world industrial class nations so maybe they might have a good idea or two we could copy and improve upon.

I suspect that a full voucher system would eventually cause a heavy increase in attendance at religious schools and a decrease in attendance at state schools because parents want children to develop good values.  This potential shift away from state schools scares many state educators today because they would lose students and the money associated with them attending a state school.  These state educators are probably right to be concerned because it directly affects their jobs.  Some state schools may not be able to compete in a voucher system because parents don’t want to send their children to a school that may be perceived as less than some type of private school.

I remember when one of my children needed some specific services that could only be provided by a particular private school.  The public school officials didn’t want to pay for this service from the private school and they fought us every step of the way until it became painfully obvious things just were not working for our child at that public school.  No one likes to admit that they can’t do something especially when money is involved and it might set a precedent for others to follow.  This experience diminished my sympathy for the administrators of public schools but not all public schools may  have this type of situation.  The school district did finally agree to pay for the services from the private school.

I remember my first class in college called Engineering 101.  Our first assignment was an individual oral presentation to the class and an associated paper.  I was shocked when one of the students started giving his oral presentation because you could clearly tell his large public school system from another state had let him down by the manner in which he was speaking.  I don’t think he had any disability other than that no teacher had ever forced him to speak coherently.  After speaking, he ripped his paper from a spiral wire notebook and attempted to hand it to the professor.  The professor didn’t accept the handwritten report and asked to see him after class.

I never saw the other student again even though MSOE is not that big.  He must have been able to qualify to get into college by having good grades, good test scores and enough money to pay tuition.  MSOE gets a lot of foreign students from non-English speaking countries but he was from America.  I felt sad for this person because he had made such an effort to be there and was really being defeated by a prior educational system experience that had not prepared him adequately for simple things.  I suspect that if this person had received the same opportunity that I had growing up attending good schools he would have had no problem.

The best student I ever met at MSOE was a Vietnamese girl with a 4.0 grade point average.  She had good grades in spite of English not being her native language.  She was certainly smart but the real reason she had good grades seemed to be that she just worked harder than anyone I had ever met previously.  I suspect her family taught her that trait and reinforced it during her prior education.  Parents should have the ability to choose the education their children get although I think her parents did an exceptional job under difficult circumstances.

Isn’t the freedom to choose what America is really all about?  Vouchers would allow less wealthy families to have a choice to send their child where they want.  Why would anyone be opposed to free choice?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Easter without any bad religion !

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Is religion a bad word that Christians should not use?  The word religion is not used much in the Bible. Here is one place I found it mentioned.

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

I did a Kindle Fire word search of an NIV Bible translation to find the quote above in the book of James.  I have heard it said that Christians do not have a Religion but they do have a relationship with Christ. This statement implies that religion is somehow bad.  Many people associate religion with someone dogmatically trying to force them to follow a set of arbitrary rules.  I have sympathy for this opinion.

I am not very good at listening to people and following their arbitrary religious rules. I don’t really agree with most people about any subject so why should religion be any different for me. I have left some Churches and been asked to leave from others because I am a little disagreeable.  The Bibles statement about religion in the book of James seems the right way to go for me even if I have not put into perfect practice.  I think that the reputation of the word religion would be greatly improved if Christians practiced more of the religion described in James along with having a relationship with Christ.

I have never found a perfect Church and I don’t believe any religion has a perfect interpretation of the Bible.  People will always disappoint you and Church is made up of people so it is best to get your facts straight from the Bible. My religion and personal testimony is that I accept the following statements from the Bible for my life.

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well.”


“Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.”


“That if you confess† with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead,† you will be saved.”

Someone asked me why I accept the words of the Bible as true.  The four Gospels are often viciously attacked by atheists because they provide the clearest facts about Jesus. There are many reasons that could be given for accepting these books as historically accurate and any one of which would be sufficient for me. My recommendation is to just read and study them to see if Jesus makes sense to you.