Posts Tagged ‘Blind’


New York Times Columnist Bob Herbert wrote an editorial June 21 titled “When Greatness Slips Away”. It has been reprinted in every major newspaper and has been talked about around the world.

After describing our blown opportunities in dealing with the 9/11 attack, Hurricane Katrina, the great economic crisis and now the BP oil catastrophe, he writes:

“As a nation, we are becoming more and more accustomed to a sense of helplessness. We no longer rise to the great challenges before us. It’s not just that we can’t plug the oil leak. We can’t seem to do much of anything.”

“The city of Detroit is using federal money to destroy thousands upon thousands of empty homes, giving in to a sense of desperation that says there is no way to rebuild the city, so let’s destroy even more of it. Lots more of it…”

“…The June 28 cover story of Time magazine is headlined “The Broken States of America.” The states are facing a catastrophic fiscal situation that is short-circuiting essential services, pushing even more people out of work and undermining the feeble national economic recovery.”

As Time reported: “Schools, health services, libraries — and the salaries that go with them — are all on the chopping block as states and cities face their worst cash squeeze since the Great Depression.”

We are submitting to this debacle with the same pathetic lack of creativity and helpless mindset that now seems to be the default position of Americans in the 21st century. We have become a nation that is good at destroying things — with wars overseas and mind-bogglingly self- destructive policies here at home — but that has lost sight of how to build and maintain a flourishing society.

How is it possible that we would let this happen? We’ve got all kinds of sorry explanations for why we can’t do any of the things we need to do…Meanwhile, the greatness of the United States, which so many have taken for granted for so long, is steadily slipping away.

I still believe in America! I still believe in the Spirit of America. But I believe that Spirit is slowly slipping away, and I believe I know why!

God has declared his standard of greatness for any nation.

Righteousness exalts a nation, But sin is a disgrace to any people. Proverbs 14:34

Righteousness is the foundation for the Spirit of America, for the Greatness of America. Sadly, we are losing our foundation of righteousness.

William Bennett, in addressing the Midshipmen of the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD, November 24th, 1997, said:

“America is a place of heroes, honor, achievement, and respect. But it is as well a place where far too often, heroism is confused with celebrity, honor with fame, true achievement with popularity, individual respect with political correctness. From inside here you look out at a culture that celebrates self-gratification, the crossing of all moral boundaries, and now even the breaking of all social taboos. And on top of it all, too often the sound you hear is whining – the whining of America, what can be heard only as the enormous ingratitude of modern man toward our unprecedented prosperity and good fortune.

Despite our wonders and greatness, we are a society that has experienced so much social regression, so much decadence, in so short a period of time, that in many parts of America we have become the kind of place to which civilized nations used to send missionaries.” http://www.chaoticsynapticactivity.com/2006/08/03/does-honor-have-a-future-william-bennett/

Even in 1997, William Bennett was decrying the growing decadence in America, proclaiming that many parts of America are the kinds of places we used to send missionaries to!

John Adams foresaw long ago that:

“Human passions unbridled by morality and religion…would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net.” — John Adams

The “Spirit of America” is slipping away like a whale through a net because we have forgotten what Righteousness is! Righteousness exalts a nation, But sin is a disgrace to any people. Proverbs 14:34

There has been much debate about the religious beliefs of our Founding Fathers. Regardless of what you believe about their religious beliefs, all the writings we have indicate that our founding Father’s knew what “Righteousness” was. They knew what morality and virtue was. They believed that the Bible was the Word of God and that Righteousness and morality and virtue are all defined within its pages.

The 1828 Webster’s Dictionary defined righteousness:

“Purity of heart and rectitude of life; conformity of heart and life to the divine law. Righteousness, as used in Scripture and theology, in which it is chiefly used, is nearly equivalent to holiness, comprehending holy principles and affections of heart, and conformity of life to the divine law. It includes all we call justice, honesty and virtue, with holy affections; in short, it is true religion.”

Webster concluded that righteousness is conformity to the divine law, and in short is true religion. Webster considered “education useless without the Bible.” And as a result he utilized God’s written word as a key to the meaning of words. There is a Scripture reference used in most of his definitions.

Noah Webster wrote in the “History of the United States, 1833”;“…the moral principles and precepts contained in the Scriptures ought to form the basis of all our civil constitutions and laws… All the miseries and evils which men suffer from vice, crime, ambition, injustice, oppression, slavery, and war, proceed from their despising or neglecting the precepts contained in the Bible.”

Our founding fathers knew the Scriptures, knew the validity of them, and realized that Creator God was the defining image of Righteousness and Justice. Righteousness was based upon the truth of God and the truth of His Word. God set the definition of Righteousness.

  • George Washington (Farewell Address, 1796) “And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion…reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.”
  • John Adams (letter, 1776) “Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for liberty, but it is religion and morality alone, which can establish the Principles upon which Freedom can securely stand.”
  • Benjamin Rush (Essay, 1798) “The only foundation for…a republic is to be laid in religion. Without this there can be no virtue, and without virtue there can be no liberty, and liberty is the object and life of all republican governments.”

JOHN EIDSMOE wrote “Christianity and the Constitution: The Faith of Our Founding Fathers” (Baker Book House, 1987, 2008), and in it he demonstrates that at least 51 of the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention were members of Christian churches, and that leading American political figures in the founding era quoted the Bible far more than any other source.

John Adams summed it up:

John Adams (Address, 1798) “We have no government armed in power capable of contending in human passions unbridled by morality and religion… Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

Our government and our Constitution was based upon a people who are moral and religious. Our Constitution was founded upon the principles of Righteousness! Righteousness exalts a Nation! The Spirit of America, the Strength of America is based upon our Righteousness in upholding the Law of God!

Something is happening to America! The Spirit of America is slipping away! The greatness of America is slipping away!

We have Slipped Away From our foundation of Righteousness!

The 1913 Webster Dictionary had modified the main definition of righteousness:

“The quality or state of being righteous; holiness; purity; uprightness; rectitude.”

Gone was the basis or foundation of the righteousness-God and His Word.

By 2010, we see a complete watering down of the term:

“acting in a just, upright manner; doing what is right; virtuous:” “adhering to moral principles”

“characterized by or proceeding from accepted standards of morality or justice;”

Instead of a Nation “under God” we are becoming a nation “apart from God!”

We have taken God out of education, out of politics, and are in the process of taking him out of society.

Even the Pope Sees It

I never thought I would quote a Pope, but Pope Benedict is even concerned about this and on June 30th issued this:

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Benedict XVI is creating a new Vatican office to fight secularization and “re-evangelize” the West …

“The process of secularization has produced a serious crisis of the sense of the Christian faith and role of the Church.” The new pontifical council, he said, would “promote a renewed evangelization” in countries where the Church has long existed “but which are living a progressive secularization of society and a sort of ‘eclipse of the sense of God.'” http://www.usatoday.com/news/religion/2010-06-30

America is one of those countries experiencing an ‘eclipse of the sense of God!

God has come under attack in America, and is being pushed aside. Our society is becoming increasingly secularized, and everything from churches to politics is being affected. We are turning away from the moral foundation of Righteousness which made our nation great! As a result, the Great Spirit of America is slipping away!

America Needs a Strong Moral Foundation

When we forget God and ignore His Word, the moral fabric that forms the foundation of our Government is seriously weakened.

  • Samuel Adams (letter, 1778) “Religion and good morals are the only solid foundations of public liberty and happiness.”
  • Patrick Henry (letter, 1799) “The great pillars of all government and of social life [are] virtue, morality, and religion. This is the armor…and this alone, that renders us invincible.”

By Secularizing morals and ethics (secularizing means to make profane, to remove the spiritual basis) and by denying God as the source and standard of RIGHTEOUSNESS, we are pushing the American Ideals off the foundation of God’s Word! Those Ideals cannot stand without the foundation of God! The American Constitution cannot be secularized without being torn apart!

Remember the words of John Adams:

“Human passions unbridled by morality and religion…would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net.” — John Adams

IS THIS THE INTENT OF OUR GOVERNMENT?

America, from our political leaders to our sacred halls of education, are intent on acting out Psalms 2:

Why are the nations so angry? Why do they waste their time with futile plans? The kings of the earth prepare for battle; the rulers plot together against the Lord and against his anointed one. “Let us break their chains,” they cry, “and free ourselves from slavery to God.” Psalms 2:1-3

OUR GODLY FOUNDATION IS FAILING – WE HAVE A SUBGRADE PROBLEM

Soft Subgrade repaired with Fabric

The Righteousness that is based upon God’s Moral Law is being stripped away from our moral consciousness, and thereby the moral fabric of America is coming unraveled. The Stabilization fabric of America is failing.

Daniel Webster (4th of July oration, 1800) “To preserve the government we must also preserve morals. Morality rests on religion; if you destroy the foundation, the superstructure must fall. When the public mind becomes vitiated and corrupt, laws are a nullity and constitutions are waste paper.”

America is starting to yaw (move unsteadily, weave, deviate from a straight course). Our subgrade is failing, our Godly foundation is breaking up.

America was founded by laws drawn from God’s Holy Law. But we have profaned our laws by removing God’s Moral Standard. We have vitiated our Laws by removing that which made them RIGHTEOUS! We have become a SECULAR NATION!

God is being replaced slowly but surely, and we are not even noticing.

In 1986, Dr. Paul Vitz, then professor of psychology at New York University, worked with a committee that examined sixty social studies and history textbooks used in public schools across the United States. The committee was amazed to find that almost every reference to the Christian influence of early America was systematically removed. Their conclusion: the writers of the commonly used textbooks exhibited paranoia of the Christian religion and intentionally censored Christianity’s positive role in American history. (Paul C. Vitz. Censorship: Evidence of Bias in Our Children’s Textbooks.)

“The present educational establishment, to cite just one group, has been obscuring the past so that our children have no way of comparing the facts of history with the distorted version promoted by biased secular historians.” (Vitz. Ibid. p. 24)

“In grades 1 through 4 these books introduce the child to U.S. society – to family life, community activities, ordinary economic transactions, and some history. None of the books covering grades 1 through 4 contain one word referring to any religious activity in contemporary American life.” (Paul C. Vitz. Professor of psychology at New York University. Censorship: Evidence of Bias in Our Children’s Textbooks . 1986.)

“Are public school textbooks biased? Are they censored? The answer to both is yes, and the nature of the bias is clear: Religion, traditional family values, and many conservative positions have been reliably excluded from children’s textbooks.” (Paul C. Vitz. Religion and Traditional Values in Public School Textbooks. p. 14)

As God is being replaced, so is the Great American Spirit.

Christians are Becoming at Risk in America

I never thought I would not live to see the day when the civil liberties of Christians are at risk in America. Examples of what is Happening:

In an article in the Lexinton, NC Dispatch dated February 24, 2010; Columnist Denny Whalen wrote an article entitled http://www.the-dispatch.com/article/20100224/COLUMNISTS/2244021?p=all&tc=pgall

“Christians find themselves under fire throughout United States.”

Here are a few of his comments (plus some more I have found):

  • Arlene Elshinnawy, a 75-year-old grandmother of three, and Lynda Beckman, a 70-year-old grandmother of 10 (along with nine others), were arrested for sharing their faith on the public sidewalk in Philadelphia, Pa., USA. The event was the city funded Gay “OUTFEST”. They faced 47 years (the rest of their lives) in jail for spreading the Gospel because of a Pennsylvania “hate crimes” law.
  • A woman in Houston, Texas, was recently ordered by local police to stop handing out gospel tracts to children who knocked on her door during Halloween. Investigating officers told her that such activity is illegal and that she would be arrested if she continued the practice.
  • At the same time, the Freedom from Religion Foundation in Madison, Wis., is allowed to distribute anti-Christian pamphlets to public school children titled “We can be Good without God”
  • Police arrested seven Christians in Elmira, N.Y., who prayed on public property while holding their Bibles. The charges? Intent to cause a public disturbance, obstructing foot and vehicle traffic and taking part in any act that serves no legitimate purpose.
  • In San Diego, the school district granted a group of Muslim students prayer rights despite the rulings that verbal prayer in public schools has been declared unconstitutional, even if the prayer is both voluntary and denominationally neutral.
  • In a Michigan case, it was declared unconstitutional for a student to pray aloud over his lunch.
  • A student in Omaha, Neb., was prohibited from reading his Bible silently during study hall and was further enjoined from opening his Bible at all in school.
  • Sixty-seven year-old Cummings, Ga., resident Fredric Baumann was arrested for passing out gospel tracts on a public street. Convicted and jailed for two days, Baumann was denied his rights to contact a lawyer, and denied the use of his reading glasses.
  • Jim Pullion, a quiet, disabled Christian grandfather would peacefully hold pro-life signs around his community of Owosso, Michigan. But one morning while holding signs in front of his granddaughter’s High School, Jim was viciously shot and killed by Harlan Drake. Drake said he killed Jim because he was upset by his abortion signs. Even though Pouillon’s family extended their forgiveness, Drake remains unrepentant even as he was sentenced to life in prison.
  • April 27, 2010, Julea Ward had the hopes of becoming a certified counselor. With a 3.9 grade point average, she was only a few months away from graduating with a Master’s degree from Eastern Michigan University. The University expelled Julea from her Master’s program because she refused to engage in activities contrary to her Christian faith. She would not counsel in favor of homosexual lifestyles. When approached by her teacher to counsel someone about their homosexual relationship Julea politely declined and referred the client to another counselor. She was expelled.
  • In Boynton Beach Florida, on February 4th of 2010, two young men (Tite Sufra, 24, and Stephen Ocean, 23)were witnessing to Jeriah Woody (18).

They witnessed to Woody for fifteen minutes when he got a phone call and told the preachers he ‘had to go.’ As they walked away, Woody suddenly started walking back toward them. Sufra walked up to greet him and was killed with a shot gun blast at point blank range. When Ocean ran, he was shot in the back. After he fell, Woody shot him in the head execution style. Woody was arrested Wednesday and is charged with two counts of first-degree murder. (Feb 5, Christian News Wire) Jeriah said he had to run a quick errand, left and returned with a pistol. He shot and killed Tite Sufra (24) and Stephen Ocean (23).

Less than two weeks ago:

  • June 19, 2010 DEARBORN, Mich. — Four Christians were arrested for disorderly conduct outside the Dearborn Arab International Festival while handing out copies of the Gospel of John in English and Arabic.

Arrested were Negeen Mayel, Dr. Nabeel Qureshi, David Woods, and Paul Rezkalla. Dr. Quereshi is co-director of Acts 17 Apologetics Ministries. He holds an MD from Eastern Virginia Medical School and an MA in Christian apologetics from Biola University. Mayel, an eighteen-year-old female, whose parents emigrated from Afghanistan is a recent convert from Islam to Christianity.

“When Dr. Quereshi was arrested I heard people clapping and applauding, and some said ‘Allahu Akbar,’” Atkins said. There was a crowd of 15-20 people watching the exchange and subsequent arrest.

“These Christian missionaries were exercising their Constitutional rights to free speech and the free exercise of religion, but apparently the Constitution carries little weight in Dearborn, where the Muslim population seems to dominate the political apparatus,” said Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel of the Thomas More Law Center.

“I never thought I would see this in America,” says Steven Atkins, a resident of Toronto, Canada, who was visiting the festival and observed the incident.

“It was an intense discussion, but it was not unruly,” Atkins noted. “There was no threat of violence,” he said. “It’s becoming more restrictive here than in Canada.”

Just last week:

  • TAMPA, Florida (OneNewsNow) — Earlier this month, World Changers of Florida was denied the right to distribute the Bible in the Collier County (TAMPA) School District during off-school hours. Mat Staver, founder of Liberty Counsel, is handling the case.

“The school district said that the Bible cannot be distributed on Religious Freedom Day,” he explains. “It had been distributed on Religious Freedom Day for the past several years, but this time they changed their decision and said it would be unconstitutional to distribute the Bible in a public school to willing recipients who want to receive the Bible.”

Staver notes that other items are distributed at the schools for secular events. In a Liberty Counsel press release, he stated that “limiting access to the forum based on religious viewpoint violates the First Amendment.”

“This particular school says that everything goes but the Bible is banned,” he adds.

According to the Liberty Counsel, the Collier County School Board allowed World Changers to distribute free Bibles to students during off-school hours on Religious Freedom Day, but now the school officials claim that Bibles do not provide any educational benefit to the students and the distribution should stop.

The Collier County School District policy specifically allows the distribution of literature by nonprofit organizations, but only with the approval of the superintendent and the Community Request Committee, whose members are appointed by the superintendent. Approval was denied to World Changers, despite the fact that its distribution included a disclaimer of any school endorsement or sponsorship and that receiving a Bible was purely voluntary.

“How sad that on the eve of Independence Day, when we celebrate the religious and political freedom our forefathers won for us at the cost of much blood and great sacrifice, we are compelled to sue to protect the right simply to make free Bibles available to students in public schools,” said Mathew D. Staver, Liberty Counsel founder.

Click here to read the lawsuit: http://www.liberty.edu/media/9980/attachments/complaint_world_changers_070110.pdf

The Greatness of America is slipping away because we are slipping away from God. We are losing the “Spirit of America!”

God’s Word is very clear:

  • And you shall say to them, ‘This is the nation that did not obey the voice of the Lord their God, and did not accept discipline; truth has perished; it is cut off from their lips. Jeremiah 7:28
  • The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God. Psalms 9:17

TODAY IN AMERICA – ANYTHING GOES

We are becoming a society that is not built upon God’s Truth, but based upon the denial of absolute truth, to the end that we accept ANY truth. We are becoming a Nation of “ANYTHING GOES”. We appease everyone and end up pleasing no one, especially our Creator God!

“An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.” ~Winston Churchill

Because we have become a Nation of “No Absolute Truth”, we have accepted a multitude of belief’s. We have become a nation of “Any Lie Goes!” Our acceptance of “any truth” and therefore “any lie” has led to something far worse than a “forgetting” or “neglect” of God. It is a dramatic CULTURE SHIFT!

Albert Mohler Jr

After reading the 2009 American Religious Identification Survey, Albert Mohler, President of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (our largest Southern Baptist Seminary), which revealed that the number of Americans who claim no religious affiliation has nearly doubled since 1990, rising from 8 to 15 percent and revealed firther that the Pacific Northwest is no longer the leader in people who are religiously unidentified, but is now held by the Northeast Region of America.

A remarkable culture-shift has taken place around us,” Mohler wrote. “The most basic contours of American culture have been radically altered. The so-called Judeo-Christian consensus of the last millennium has given way to a post-modern, post-Christian, post-Western cultural crisis which threatens the very heart of our culture.” “Clearly, there is a new narrative, a post-Christian narrative, that is animating large portions of this society,” http://www.newsweek.com/2009/04/03/the-end-of-christian-america.html

America is becoming a POST-CHRISTIAN NATION and the great “Spirit of America” is slipping away…

Gen. Douglas MacArthur: “It must be of the spirit, if we are to save the flesh.”

In 1863, Lincoln called the nation to fasting and prayer in order to be blessed. “We have grown in numbers, wealth and power…but have forgotten God.”

What a long way from our foundation we have fallen:

The Supreme Court in 1892

The US Supreme Court

Strong religious convictions therefore played a role in the development of the United States, which was established on Christian principles and open to all people of good will.

In 1892 (Church of the Holy Trinity v. United States) this was argued before the Supreme Court of the United States. After exhaustive deliberation, the Court said, “Our laws and our institutions must necessarily be based upon and embody the teachings of the Redeemer of mankind. It is impossible that it should be otherwise, and in this sense and to this extent our civilization and our institutions are emphatically Christian.”

Imagine that. A nation whose laws and institutions are based on the teachings of the Redeemer of mankind. Why, such a place would surely become the leader in education, invention, and the arts. Such a place would probably become a haven of religious liberty for more types and religions of people than has ever existed anywhere or at any time on earth. Instead of religious persecution and intolerance, such a place would offer hope and opportunity to the huddled masses of the earth.

This is what America became-a beacon of hope to the world, because the foundation of our government was God’s Law! But now, because we have rejected absolute truth, and in every way have rejected God’s leadership of our Nation, we have opened ourselves to accepting every kind of belief:

And Now This From President Obama:

President Barack Obama stated at a press conference in Turkey April 6th 2009 that we Americans “do not consider ourselves a Christian nation, or a Muslim nation, but rather, a nation of citizens who are, uh, bound by a set of values.”

Besides denying that America is a Christian nation, President Obama told the Turkish Parliament on the same day: “We will convey our deep appreciation for the Islamic faith, which has done so much over the centuries to shape the world — including in my own country.”  http://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/election/1003

This is a Far Cry from our Founding Fathers:

George Washington: “It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible.”

Thomas Jefferson: “The Bible is the cornerstone of liberty. . . . Students’ perusal of the sacred volume will make us better citizens, better fathers, and better husbands.”

Andrew Jackson: “That Book [the Bible] is the rock on which our Republic rests.”

Ulysses S. Grant: “Hold fast to the Bible. . . . To the influence of this Book we are indebted for all the progress made in true civilization and to this we must look as our guide in the future.”

As Del Tackett said in Tour Ten of the Truth Project:

We can ignore history and the wisdom of the Founders. We can ignore the design for which this nation was intended to operate. We can even ignore God himself. But if we do so, we would do well to consider Solzhenitsyn’s words describing the reason for the Russian Revolution that swallowed up some 60 million Russians:”Men have forgotten God; that’s why all this has happened.’

For we would do so not only at our own peril, but our own ruination.

I love America. I want to see us remain a Great Nation. What can we do to turn the tide? What can we do to stand in the Gap? What can we do to see the American Spirit thrive again?

1.  Stand Firm in Your Walk.

Constantly Check it out: Has your Christian walk become secularized? Have you secularized Christian Observances like Easter and Christmas? Do your children and grandchildren know what those holidays are really about? Examine your heart toward your church! Do you enter with the reverence of God on your heart? Examine your life through the week. Are you living as a child of God, are you reading and depending upon God’s Word? Are has your life become secularized, profane, and God rendered ineffective by your constant neglect of Him in your daily life.

2.  Be On Guard With Your Children And Grandchildren.

Become familiar with what they are learning. Examine their textbooks. Point out errors. Acquaint your children and grandchildren with the real foundation of this country. Work to counter the lies of the educational system. Become a proponent of Creator God. Let your children and grandchildren know who really made them, and how he created this world. Let them know how evolution could never explain the intricacies of how wonderfully we are made.

3.  As Christians, become Interdependent upon each other

Be Courageous and Strong! Together! We are not facing this struggle alone. We gain boldness when we join with other Christians. We unite in a common cause of making Jesus Christ known. We pursue the liberty and freedom that is in Him! And we do it united with likeminded Christians in a solid, Bible believing, Bible teaching church.

As Paul admonished the Corinthians, so God admonishes the church in the Last Days: “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. Do everything in love.”
1 Corinthians 16:13-14

We are to be the light of this Nation! We can only do so as we bind together and guide this blind nation to God’s Word once again. We do so through our lives of sincere love and compassion. We are to be the living reality of God’s Word!

Bob and Tina Andrews

Bob Andrews plays golf and has a 30 handicap. That may seem quite average to you, but Bob is totally blind. He lost his sight to a grenade in Vietnam. When he came back to the states, he was still in a coma, but his girlfriend Tina stayed by his side. She said her whole life was lying in that bed. When Bob finally came out of the coma, he was totally depressed about what blind life would be like. Tina assured him, “Look, we’re two people. We’re a team. We can do anything we want!”

They got married within two months, and embarked on an active life as a team! They are successful building contractors, they have three sons, they sail, fish, bodysurf, and even golf.

Last year Bob even became the 2009 United States Blind Golf Association’s (USBGA) national champion. What is the secret to this couple’s success?

INTERDEPENDENT TEAMWORK!

Tom Sullivan, a blind actor and recording artist revealed:

Every blind person is told at first that he’s going to be dependent on others his whole life, and so they react wildly. They walk into traffic, take up dangerous sports, stuff like that, stuff that will prove to the world that they don’t need them. But it only makes them unhappier. Eventually, through love, they recognize that the only way to be happy and at peace is to live interdependently, to live knowing they need others and others need them. That’s what blind golf is, a symbol of that lesson. The notion that we all need each other, blind or sighted.

Rick Reilly caddied for Bob (and others) to write “Who’s Your Caddy.” He observes:

“I saw then what a team they had become. They were so much greater than the sum of their parts.”

America is made up of many, many different people, with many different ideas. God is counting on the Christians, His people to work with each other in guiding this blind nation. We can’t isolate ourselves and hope the problem goes away. No, we must unite with other Bible Believers and together, through love and faithful witness, we can see the Sprit of America restored.

Righteousness Exalts a Nation!

When we fail to see our dependence upon each other, fail to work together for the cause of Jesus Christ, we are giving in to the secular powers that want to remove God from our Nation. We celebrate July 4th as our Independence Day. Yet our independence will lead to the loss of the Great American Spirit.

We need to declare July 4th our Interdependence Day and work as a team to restore the Righteousness of God in our Nation! It begins with our lives!

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Dancing with the Stars is starting soon. I know that there are a few fans here. One Dance you will not see the contestants performing is the “Dance of the Moron”. And no you will not see this couple performing either. We laugh, but there really is a dance of the Moron that God says describes as the forbidden dance, one which He is Passionately Opposed to.

The Dance of the Moron looks exciting and wonderful to other morons, but to God, it is very deadly.

This Dance of the Moron is described in the verses we will look at in Romans 1:18-23.

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. Romans 1:18-23 (ESV)

Terms Defined

Before we examine this Dance of the Moron and God’s Passionate Opposition to it, it would help us to define some terms:

Moron (moraino-vs 22)

  • A person who is notably stupid or lacking in good judgment.
  • In Psychology. a person of borderline intelligence in a former classification of mental retardation, having an intelligence quotient of 50 to 69.

God does not quantify morons by their IQ. God classifies people as morons based upon how they respond to the next term we’ll define. God is the one who determines who is a moron or not.

Revelation (apokalyptō – vs 17 & 18)

  • The act of revealing or disclosing; disclosure.
  • Something revealed or disclosed, esp. a striking disclosure, as of something not before realized.

I. God’s Case Against Mankind

    Why God Responds With Wrath? From Romans 1:18-23.

A.   God has Revealed Two Things to Mankind

1.    He Is and He is Righteous (vs 17)

Verse 17 says “For in it (Gospel God) the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith. This Gospel that we saw last week, that Paul surrendered his life to, is revealed in the Greatest Power this World has ever known-the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. By faith in God’s Message, we see, we know, we possess the very Righteousness of God. Gospel God is opposed to all those who by intent or by ignorance or by stupidity refuse to Honor His Righteousness.

Righteousness is “what God requires; what is right, uprightness, justice; righting wrong; (God’s) putting (man) in a right relationship (with Himself).”

God is not content being Righteous by Himself. This World, everything that is in it, including you and me, God desires with all His heart to set it Right once again. He created it RIGHT, but sin happened. He has revealed His Righteousness to us, His way of setting it right again, and it is by FAITH that this RIGHTEOUSNESS can be ours. Jesus Christ has made everything possible, and we must simply life in FAITH in what God has done through Him. IN THE GOSPEL, God has REVEALED HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS AND HOW IT IS AVAILABLE TO US!

2.    He is and He is Passionate (orge-desire – vs 18)

Various translations translate ‘orge’ in this way:

  • The wrath of God (KJV, ESV, NIV)
  • God shows his anger (NLT, GW, TEV, NCV)
  • God’s angry displeasure erupts (MSG)

Orgē is from orgaō, to teem, to swell. It is the temper of God towards sin, not rage, but the wrath of reason and law (Shedd).

Passion from Dictionary.com:

  • any powerful or compelling emotion or feeling, as love or hate.
  • strong amorous feeling or desire; love; ardor.
  • strong sexual desire; lust.
  • a strong or extravagant fondness, enthusiasm, or desire for anything: a passion for music.
  • violent anger.

Instead of viewing ‘wrath’ as some angry outburst, we should see it as a passionate display of His Righteous character. The same way married couples respond to unrighteous threats to their marriage.

  • “Wrath is the holy revulsion of God’s being against that which is the contradiction of his holiness.”
  • God is not passive but active in response to sin.
  • This attitude and exercise of righteous indignation against evil is no vice but a virtue which God perfectly displays against sin.

B.   God is El Qanna – I am Jealous

  • for you shall worship no other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God” Exodus 34:14
  • God desires His Creation to Worship Him, to Walk With Him, and He jealously injects Himself into our life.

Police will tell you that the most dangerous situations they often face are domestic conflicts. Passions and Jealousies ignite tremendous rage at times.

PERSONAL WITNESS: One of the most dramatic things I have ever witnessed was as I was a freshman in Bible College at a Laundromat doing my laundry. It was Thursday evening, I was watching Kung-Fu. All of a sudden I hear a screeching of tires as a car slammed on its brakes. Into the Laundromat a gal comes stomping, screaming, “you been messin with my man. You better getta away from my man”. This other gal doing her laundry starts screaming back and before I know it these two women are down on the ground pulling hair, punching at each other, biting. Before long the police come and drag them away. Now, I don’t know who the guy was, but he obviously had ignited a lot of passion between these two women. That passion led to violence. Their passion was based on their own selfishness.

God’s Passion does not grow from selfishness but from His Righteousness…

  • Because He is Righteous, he cannot tolerate people who deliberately turn away from Him, from His righteousness, and then declare their own! They are Morons to Him. God’s angry displeasure is against all morons, because THEY JUST DON’T GET IT, IN FACT THEY REFUSE TO GET IT. They simply keep on dancing the dance of a moron.
  • The Passion of God is not an emotional outburst as people imagine. His desire is such that we know His righteousness, that we are Holy as He is Holy. When we are not, his desire for us is kindled to the point that He would do anything to get us to turn to Him.
  • No exact form of judgment is specified; the present judgments of God are seen in a variety of ways–“natural” calamities, local disasters, etc.
  • Whether or not you believe God had a hand in the natural disasters that have been so prevalent recently, and have been revealed from the heavens, the results have been that many people have turned to Jesus Christ.

God has done so much for us, he is shouting at the top of HIs Voice, I am Your Creator, Your God. Why won’t you give your lives to me? Why do you insist on ignoring me, on living your own way? Why do you insist on being ungodly and unrighteous? Because of my Righteous desire for you, here is a taste of my Power. Wake up and turn to Me!

Look at What Has Happened as the Result of His Wrath in the recent earthquake in Haiti:

In Haiti: A reported 40,127 Haitians have made professions of faith in Jesus Christ since a major earthquake hit the impoverished nation in January, according to pastors and directors of missions within the Confraternite Missionaire Baptiste d’Haiti (CMBH).

“Haiti is ripe for a spiritual movement from God,” said Craig Culbreth, director of the Florida Baptist Convention’s partnership missions department, which coordinates the work of the CMBH, upon his Feb. 22 return from Port-au-Prince.

During a Feb. 16-17 citywide holiday observance in Cap Haitien, Haiti’s second largest city, Culbreth saw “thousands upon thousands filling the streets where people are seeking God and asking Him to spare them from what happened in Port-au-Prince. For me, it was a New Testament expression of what it looks like when the Spirit of God shows up. I have never seen anything like it.”

God’s Passionate Desire is For Us to Walk in His Righteousness

You have a mighty arm; strong is your hand, high your right hand. Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; steadfast love and faithfulness go before you. Blessed are the people who know the festal shout, who walk, O Lord, in the light of your face, who exult in your name all the day and in your righteousness are exalted. Psalms 89:13-16 (ESV)

Men May Complain That God is Not Fair and that He is so Hateful…Yet one day we will all see that His Acts Have all Been Based upon His Righteousness:

And I saw what appeared to be a sea of glass mingled with fire—and also those who had conquered the beast and its image and the number of its name, standing beside the sea of glass with harps of God in their hands. And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, “Great and amazing are your deeds, O Lord God the Almighty! Just and true are your ways, O King of the nations! Who will not fear, O Lord, and glorify your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship you, for your righteous acts have been revealed.” Revelation 15:2-4 (ESV)

God Reveals Himself in His Righteous Acts, even though they may seem like wrath.

II. GOD’S RIGHTEOUSNESS VS. MAN’S UNRIGHTEOUSNESS

A. Man’s Reaction to God’s Revelation

1. Ungodliness (asebeian). Lack of Reverence because of an innate wickedness – wanting to do things their own way.

2.Unrighteousness (adikía).

  • Injustice. What ought not to be, that which is wrong. In 1 John 5:17, “all unrighteousness [adikía] is sin [hamartía].”
  • Lack of right conduct toward men, injustice  This follows naturally from irreverence. The basis of ethical conduct rests on the nature of God and our attitude toward him, otherwise the law of the jungle (cf. Nietzsche, “might makes right”).
  • Unrighteousness will result in deeds which violate law and justice
  • Immorality

B.   The Result of Man’s Reaction:

1.    Men Hold Back (Suppress, repress-Katechonton) the TRUTH by their Unrighteousness

  • The conduct of men that is a result of their lack of reverence for God actually hold’s back God Truth.
  • Just as disobedience caused Adam and Eve’s eyes to be opened to see their nakedness, so sin blinds our eyes to God!

2.    Sin blinds us to our need for God!

Now the holy anger of God is disclosed from Heaven against the godlessness and evil of those men who render truth dumb and inoperative by their wickedness (Philips Translation)

C.   Man Chose to Ignore the Truth of God

1.  God  Reveals Himself to Man

  • God Reveals Himself in Blazing Neon Signs
  • Men deliberately chose to be irreverent toward God
  • Men deliberately chose their own morality which leads to injustice, disobedience, partiality, greed, selfishness, and every kind of immoral behavior.

For what can be known about God is plain(phaneron) to them, because God has shown(phaneroo) it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. Romans 1:19-20 (ESV)

  • phaneron  phaneroō

That which can be known about God is phaneros – (to shine, to make to shine or to cause to appear. Apparent, manifest, plain –  it is that apparent!) You cannot escape the obvious revelation of God!

2.    His Invisible Attributes Shine Big and Bright

JBPhilips: It is not that they do not know the truth about God; indeed he has made it quite plain to them. For since the beginning of the world the invisible attributes of God, e.g. his eternal power and divinity, have been plainly discernible through things which he has made and which are commonly seen and known, thus leaving these men without a rag of excuse.

Paul is speaking of what man can see in the created order because of the knowledge he inherently possesses as a creature made in God’s image.

  • Special revelation shows God as Redeemer;
  • General revelation shows God as Creator!
  • Special revelation is the norm for the church;
  • General revelation is the norm for society!
  • Special revelation is the means for salvation;
  • General revelation is the means of condemnation!

3.    Men are Without Excuse

Even if Jesus had been preached to them, they would have rejected Him, because they reject God Himself!

III. Why Are Men Without Excuse?

THEY REFUSE TO KNOW THE TRUTH IN THESE THREE WAYS:

A.   Men Refuse/Fail to Glorify God as God

1.  They know (ginosko) there is a God.

  • to know by personal experience.
  • En autois suggests intuitive knowledge, the sphere in which God is known (phaneron), our heart and mind.
  • Murray combines the two ideas: God is known “in them” (en autois, v.19a) because He revealed Himself “to them” (autois, v.19b) in creation.
  • This knowledge of God in man is a result of God’s own self-disclosure. All men possess clear (albeit limited) knowledge of God, for He has made Himself known to them.

Paul addressed the Greek Philosophers on Mars Hill:

that they should seek God, in the hope that they might feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us, for “ ‘In him we live and move and have our being’; as even some of your own poets have said, “ ‘For we are indeed his offspring.’ Acts 17:27-28 (ESV)

God made us with the capacity to recognize that there is a God, that this God created us, designed us, and desires to have a relationship with us.

2. They Refuse or Fail to Render Proper Glory to God.

  • doxázō: To honor, bestow honor upon, exalt in dignity, render glorious. CWSD
  • Proper Honor means to render glory to Him, recognize Him for Who and What He is, to celebrate with praises, worship, adoration. CWSD
  • Proper Glory means we seek to Worship Him with our substance, with our hearts, with our hands, with our lives.

Whatever we do we do it with the Glory of God in Mind! How many people would murder, steal, lie, cheat if they lived to give proper Honor to God?

3. How Does Mankind Refuse or Fail to Give Proper Glory to God?

  • Act like He doesn’t exist.
  • Ignore His Message
  • Complain about What Happens
  • Depend upon yourself or your friends or the Government
  • Fail to acknowledge Him as you work and play
  • Act as if He doesn’t exist.
  • We are not just talking about Heathens, Hooligans and the Hell-Bound!

“Go and proclaim in the hearing of Jerusalem, Thus says the Lord, “I remember the devotion of your youth, your love as a bride, how you followed me in the wilderness, in a land not sown. Israel was holy to the Lord, the firstfruits of his harvest. All who ate of it incurred guilt; disaster came upon them, declares the Lord.” Hear the word of the Lord, O house of Jacob, and all the clans of the house of Israel. Thus says the Lord: “What wrong did your fathers find in me that they went far from me, and went after worthlessness, and became worthless? They did not say, ‘Where is the Lord who brought us up from the land of Egypt, who led us in the wilderness, in a land of deserts and pits, in a land of drought and deep darkness, in a land that none passes through, where no man dwells?’ And I brought you into a plentiful land to enjoy its fruits and its good things. But when you came in, you defiled my land and made my heritage an abomination. The priests did not say, ‘Where is the Lord?’ Those who handle the law did not know me; the shepherds transgressed against me; the prophets prophesied by Baal and went after things that do not profit. “Therefore I still contend with you, declares the Lord, and with your children’s children I will contend. For cross to the coasts of Cyprus and see, or send to Kedar and examine with care; see if there has been such a thing. Has a nation changed its gods, even though they are no gods? But my people have changed their glory for that which does not profit. Be appalled, O heavens, at this; be shocked, be utterly desolate, declares the Lord, for my people have committed two evils: they have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters, and hewed out cisterns for themselves, broken cisterns that can hold no water. Jeremiah 2:2-13 (ESV)

B. Men Refuse/Fail to Give Thanks to God

1. Wonders of Creation

The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Psalms 19:1 (ESV)

2. Provisions and Blessings

Many, O Lord my God, are the wonders which You have done, And Your thoughts toward us; There is none to compare with You. If I would declare and speak of them, They would be too numerous to count. Psalms 40:5 (NASB)

3. In the Way they Treat Others and their Environment

God’s Law had amazing provisions for care of the blind and lame, as well as taking care of refuse and trash.

4. In the Way we Treat our Possessions

  • Look at the way God wanted His Tabernacle constructed and maintained
  • Do You Tithe, do you treat your money as your own?
  • One way God says that we fail to give Him thanks is to Rob Him of His Tithe. Malachi

C. Men Become Vain in their Thinking

Became vain” is mataioō. The noun is mataios, “devoid of force, truth, success, result.” The word “vain” today means “proud.” The Greek word did not have any idea like that. Mataios refers to that which is in vain, futile, that which is without result or success. It refers to the unsuccessful attempt to do something or be something. It refers to that which does not measure up to that which it should be.

1.  In scriptures becoming vain usually means to become corrupt and wicked.

Vain conversation and living is CORRUPT when contrasted with God

Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; 1 Peter 1:18 (KJV)

Vanity is a Wicked Walk away from God

This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. Ephesians 4:17-19 (KJV)

2.    They think of Themselves

a)   Look at me,
b)   Look at what I can do,
c)    Look at all that I have accomplished.

3.    Man attempts to become something, and instead becomes NOTHING!

  • Solomon said, “Vanity of vanities, all is vanity.” That is, “futility of futilities, all is futile.” All that he tried was futile, unsuccessful, in giving him complete satisfaction.
  • Men and Women, refusing to glorify God and be grateful, became futile, unsuccessful in their reasonings (imaginations). The word is dialogismos, “the thinking of a man deliberating with himself, deliberation.”Wuest

4.    Man’s Thinking Gets Messed Up

  • Men, in refusing to recognize the true God, entertain foolish and wicked thoughts of who God is.
  • The implication is they become evil and wicked
  • The thoughts of men were continually evil before the flood.
  • They become foolish in imagining there is no God.
  • They become foolish and start worshipping other gods, idols, things, even themselves.
  • Mental Disease is also the result.
    • Depression
    • Schizophrenic
    • Anxieties

IV. The Result of Man’s Choice

They Dance the Moron Dance

“their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. Romans 1:21-23 (ESV)

  • They lost the light of divine knowledge;
  • foolish heart: ἀσύνετος, Without insight or understanding, unintelligent, foolish. CWSD
  • Their heart becomes darkened so they no longer have any insight into God.

The Hebrews in the Wilderness

This is how the Israelites could be the way they were in the wilderness. In spite of all God had done and was continuing to do, they were clueless when it came to the need to worship and honor Jehovah God.

God had Moses take the Jews the long way around Edom. It was desolate land, not plush and green like the many oasis in Egypt. Even as slaves they had a choice of food, stores they could go to, nice things they could buy. Water was plentiful. Clothing was beyond compare. The ladies could buy the latest slave fashions. They had nice homes to live in, stoves to cook on.

Now they were forced to march in the desert, going who knows where. No stores, no variety of food. None of those Egyptian delicacies they had grown so fond of. All they had now was this Manna that they had to pick up off the ground. Water was scarce and had to be rationed. The heat was unbearable. They had to pitch tents all the time. No cushy commode to sit on and relax. You had to fight off the insects and wild beasts when you went to the bathroom. No fancy Egyptian makeup or Spa treatments in the wilderness.

They got to thinking they were better than this. They deserved more! They started complaining against Jehovah and against Moses.

“Why have you brought us out of Egypt to die here in the wilderness?” they complained. “There is nothing to eat here and nothing to drink. And we hate this horrible manna!”

So the Lord sent poisonous snakes among the people, and many were bitten and died. Numbers 21:4-6 (NLT)

  • Have you ever seen someone trying to avoid an aggressive, striking snake?
  • They start dancing a silly, stupid, moronic dance

When the snakes started attacking, there was a lot of dancing going on.

Paul wrote: Claiming to be Wise, they became fools-moraino. That’s that word we learned about a few weeks ago. Jesus said that salt can become “moraino” insipid, bland, useless, good for nothing.

God says to you and me:

I created you in my image. I meant you to be so wonderful and so marvelous, yet you refuse to honor me, you refuse to thank me, you put yourself first. You’ve become a moron, you’ve become useless to me, and to top it off you are doing a stupid end zone dance saying “Look at me, look at what I’ve done, Look at how great I am!”

  • You start doing the moron dance, and then you dance around your idols, your stuff and you say look at all my great stuff.
  • You start dancing around at a football game and say look at how great our team is.

God says, “OK, you want to dance the Moron Dance, go ahead. Here I’ll help. How about an earthquake. How about a Tornado? Can you dance in a hurricane? How about some aggressive snakes?

The Dance of the Moron is the dance of someone who refuses by intent or by stupidity to Honor God as God, to Thank God, and instead put themselves on the pedestal.

They become moraino and exchange the Glory of God meant for them into something stupid and temporal like a car or a house or a football team or a soft pillow on Sunday morning. Or they create their own God, their own religion.

What Can I Do?    –   Have a New Focus!

We think that Romans 1:18 – 32 applies only to heathens, gentiles, those that reject God. But if you read Scriptures, Christians can become darkened in their heart, carnal in their heart, fleshly. Christians can even do the Dance of the Christian Moron.

You supposedly know better. You supposedly have been made alive to God. You supposedly have God’s Holy Spirit living in you?

Why then are you not honor God, Honoring His Word, Obeying Him? Why are you robbing God? Why do you pay him lipservice, but go out and do what you want to do?

Why are you so ungrateful to HIm? Why do you hold on to your money and your possessions like they are yours?

Why do you pat yourself on the back so often, and think how well you have done.

Could you heart be getting dark? Could your soul be getting hard toward God? Is that your leg starting to quiver, to move. Is that your arm starting to wave?

Christians can dance the Moron Dance as stupidly as any heathen. How do I stop? How can I become useful to God? How can I experience this Glory of God?

Journey to the Cross for New Life