Archive for the ‘Fools’ Category

Football is a religion to many in America. They have their Sunday ritual of worship just as churches do. As the Giants and Patriots prepare for Superbowl XLVI, the Tebow phenomenon has quickly faded from memory.

I do not believe God is sitting on the sidelines cheering one team against the other. I know He watches, because He is intimately involved in the affairs of men.

I saw His involvement in the Ravens vs. Patriots game on January 22, 2012. I doubt if anyone else saw it, but the moment I saw that last second Ravens field goal miss wide left, I said, “Praise God, you have revealed your glory!”

I admit that I am not normal, for I try to see God at work in everything I observe, even a silly football game. Most people do not want a God that involved with their lives. They want a distant God who will come running to their aide in a time of trouble. However, God wants us to hear His voice every day, for He calls to us every day. He hates it when we shut Him out of our daily lives, coming to Him only in times of trouble. This is what He says to you who see God only as your “rescuer”.

Proverbs 1:24-28 Because I have called and you refused to listen, have stretched out my hand and no one has heeded, because you have ignored all my counsel and would have none of my reproof, I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when terror strikes you, when terror strikes you like a storm and your calamity comes like a whirlwind, when distress and anguish come upon you. Then they will call upon me, but I will not answer; they will seek me diligently but will not find me.

Now most football fans see the folly of asking God to help their team win, at least I hope they do. I hope they do not think that Tim Tebow is praying to God to help his Bronco’s win. If Tim Tebow understands the Word of God, he knows we are to pray that everything we do honors the Name of God and brings Glory to Him. We are to honor His Name in victory as well as defeat…especially in defeat. Winning is important, but Honoring the Name of God is more important.

Why do I think God involved Himself in the Ravens v. Patriots game? Because Terrell Suggs invited Him when he publicly dis-honored the Name of God. He did not mean to, but his boasting led to God taking a personal interest in that game, especially the fourth quarter. Here is what happened:

ESPN’s First Take reported this comment from Terrell Suggs, made in reaction to Tim Tebow:

“With all due respect, we don’t pray on sidelines”, Suggs told ESPN’s First Take on Tuesday morning. … “I don’t feel comfortable I gotta pray every 4th quarter, like oh my god please come save me again.”

Yahoo Sports changed his comment to say this:

“With all due respect we don’t need God on our sidelines,” Suggs said.

NBC Sports ran with Yahoo and made this their Headline: about his comments:

Suggs on Tebow: “We don’t need God on our sidelines”

I even used the headline to emphasize a point I was making about fools in writing about David’s encounter with Nabal. I said, “Terrell Suggs showed he is a fool by saying the Baltimore Ravens do not need God on their sidelines.”

I was using the Biblical definition of fool, from the Psalms describing a fool as one who says “God is not”. To me, Suggs was saying that God is not important, and so they do not need to pray to Him on the sidelines. He was saying “We don’t need God on our sidelines” in order to win in the fourth quarter.

While that statement may be true in itself, the moment Terrell Suggs exalted himself and the Ravens above God, and said, “We don’t pray on the sidelines”, as if they do not need God…he invited God into the game, especially in the fourth quarter!

God wants all men to know that they do need Him, regardless of how mighty their defense is, regardless of how great they ‘think’ they are. Man is in need of God, man is in need of a Savior. God involved Himself in the fourth quarter of a silly football game simply to show us that we all need Him!

Even Benjamin Franklin realized the need of God in the founding of our Nation:

And have we now forgotten that powerful friend? or do we imagine that we no longer need his assistance? I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth- that God Governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings, that “except the Lord build the House they labour in vain that build it.” I firmly believe this; and I also believe that without his concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better, than the Builders of Babel: We shall be divided by our little partial local interests; our projects will be confounded, and we ourselves shall become a reproach and bye word down to future ages. And what is worse, mankind may hereafter from this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing Governments by Human wisdom and leave it to chance, war and conquest. I therefore beg leave to move-that henceforth prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven, and its blessings on our deliberations, be held in this Assembly every morning before we proceed to business, and that one or more of the Clergy of this City be requested to officiate in that Service[1].

When I saw that easy chip shot of a field goal get pushed wide left, I knew God had done it, just to show Terrell Suggs they DO need God on their sidelines, especially in the fourth quarter.

I have seen many people who live their lives as if “God is not” get to the fourth quarter of their lives and realize that “God really is”. Most of the time their pride is so entrenched that it is too late. Some try to involve Him in their fourth quarter, but He doesn’t seem to respond.

God is not an “Emergency Responder”, even though He often does. He does not want to be someone you call only in the fourth quarter, when your back is against the goal line, and defeat is circling your team. God wants to be there at the opening kickoff, at the very first hike. He is our Creator and Giver of life, and He wants us to worship Him all of our lives because we need Him every day of our life.

I know Tim Tebow realizes He needs God every moment of the game, every moment of his life. His whole life is in Jesus Christ, God’s Son. The outcome of any football game is not important to God. The outcome of your life is.

Who is on the sideline of your life? Is it Jesus Christ? Is He your Savior? Then the outcome of the game does not matter, for you are already victorious in Jesus Christ. You have won the most important game of all, the Game of Life!

Basic economics teaches that, Whatever the government subsidizes, it gets more of; whatever it taxes, it gets less of”.

Subsidies for the poor, unemployed, and disabled now serve a record one in six Americans and are continuing to expand. Entitlements often encourage citizens to become idle, unproductive and irresponsible. Instead of discouraging such behavior, subsidies serve to reward it. Economic times are tough, but Americans have historically demonstrated a spirit of toughness and hard work, even when times were tough. Yet recent articles suggest we may be losing that competitive spirit.

“Whatever the government subsidizes, it gets more of”

Consider what is happening to America:

Food stamp use has risen.

USDA data released this week shows that the number of Americans receiving food aid from the Supplemental Nutrional Assistance Program (SNAP) hit another all-time high in August. 45.8 million people — almost 15% of the country — were enrolled in the program, which replaced Food Stamps in 2008. This is only a slight increase from July, when 45.3 million Americans were receiving SNAP help — but a massive 31% jump since June 2009, when the National Bureau of Economic Research declared the most recent recession over. In total, the USDA spent $6.1 billion on SNAP benefits in August 2011, up 8% from the year before.

Headlines abound about increasing numbers of American depending upon Government hand-outs for their existence:

How long will the Government be able to support all these outstretched hands? The outlook is frightening:

New congressional estimates say the trust fund that supports Social Security disability will run out of money by 2017, leaving the program unable to pay full benefits, unless Congress acts. About two decades later, Social Security’s much larger retirement fund is projected to run dry, too, leaving it unable to pay full benefits as well.

“Whatever it Taxes, it Gets Less of”

In order to keep all of these hands happy (and idle), the government has to increase taxes, in effect seizing hard-earned assets of productive people to fund this “congressional re-election assurance policy”.
Peter’s vote is bought with money seized from Paul.

Hard work is not rewarded, while complacency is. So our government continues to generate more and more willfully dependent people, as the statistics illustrate. The productive folks will continue to be taxed, more and more so, and will be de-incentivized to produce, or motivated to take their factories to other countries where productivity is not so severely penalized.

We are increasingly compelled through taxation to subsidize and support the unproductive, the willingly dependent and those who wish to live a life of ease at someone else’s expense.  But inevitably a tipping point is reached where the “takers” overwhelm the capacity of the “producers”! Societal collapse is the guaranteed result. America is tottering near the brink of such a collapse (I believe within 30 – 40 years), and we will see evidences of this future in more instances of societal protests and chaos.

English Philosopher Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) said, “The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools.”  The American Conscience is framed by fairness. However, fairness without a foundation of justice and righteousness will create a nation of fools.

The Bible puts it plainly: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat. 2 Thessalonians 3:10 (ESV)

Many that are living on Government subsidies are willing to work, but subsidies and entitlements have qualified that to mean only at a certain pay scale, otherwise it is just as profitable to stay at home and draw from the Government coffer. Once again, the Bible offers this advice: “Why should a fool have money in his hand to buy wisdom when he has no sense?” Proverbs 17:16. Indeed, fools have no sense if they believe it is better to live off the Government than lead productive lives of self-sufficiency.

The Bible describes a fool as one who is complacent “the complacency of fools destroys them” (Prov 1:32). Complacency leads to idleness and unproductive behavior. It will destroy us! Foolish policies that encourage idleness and dependence will bring folly upon our nation. For when we take the steps required to limit subsidies, we will discover the meaning of this Proverb (17:12): “Let a man meet a she-bear robbed of her cubs rather than a fool in his folly”.

By the time we decide action must be taken, it will be easier to fight off a mama bear than to take away the benefits that the fools have become used to. The folly of subsidies will be so ingrained that it will be impossible to change them without grave societal impact. Meanwhile, Congress is catering to fools, and is becoming foolish themselves. They all babble about what must be done, but no one wants to run the risk of alienating the ‘electorate’. But the words of Proverbs 10:10 are true:  “a babbling fool will come to ruin”.

“In all toil there is profit, but mere talk tends only to poverty. The crown of the wise is their wealth, but the folly of fools brings folly. Proverbs 14:23-24

We are engaging in the Politics of Folly and run the risk of destroying the greatness that was once America. Instead of foolish politicians, we need men of courage and righteousness to act as if the future of our children depend upon it!

Indeed, it does!