Precious Is the Death of His Saints

On Saturday, September 22, 2018, at the age of 92, my mother, Arlene Peck, went home to heaven to be with her Lord and Savior and all the saints, including numerous family members, who have gone on before.

About a month before Mom went home to heaven, when she had lost her appetite and mostly quit eating (except for ice cream that is), the phrase “precious is the death of His saints” kept coming to me (I realize that’s not an exact quote of the scripture, but it’s what was in my head). Knowing that I was facing the final chapter in this story and that my mind was not fully grasping how to deal with the sense of impending loss, or the appearance of death winning, I went aside to pray and seek God. As I prayed, I found myself asking the Lord for His perspective on the matter, that is, how He sees it and/or wants me to see it.

However, before I discuss the answer that God gave me, I need to share my mother’s story. Yes, my mother was kind, good, and respected by all who knew her, but I want everyone to know what went into making the person they knew and loved. Continue reading “Precious Is the Death of His Saints”

Is the Lord Building This House or Is It Just Us Laboring in Vain?

When the Constitutional Convention of 1787 found itself in gridlock, Benjamin Franklin urged his fellow delegates that daily prayers should be made “imploring the assistance of Heaven.” Franklin observed that:

We have been assured, Sir, in the Sacred Writings, that “except the Lord build the House, they labor in vain that build it.[Psalm 127:1] 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 . . .

The popularity of such religious sentiment may have waned in recent years, but the truth of God’s word, and the veracity of Mr. Franklin’s statement, remain unchanged. Labor expended on any house that is not of the Lord’s building is wasted effort that will not produce the desired results. Continue reading “Is the Lord Building This House or Is It Just Us Laboring in Vain?”

If Trump Is King Cyrus, Then What Does it Say About the American Church

During the 2016 Presidential election, a number of Christian personalities began making a comparison between the ancient Persian King, Cyrus, a heathen king who God used to release the Jews from their Babylonian captivity, and Donald Trump as a potential modern-day deliverer of American Christians. It seems that idea is still in vogue, at least in some circles.

I recently read an article about Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, likening President Trump to King Cyrus. That article referenced another article and both referenced various Christian personalities who are all keeping the Cyrus appellation alive. I’m not claiming special prophetic revelation on the matter like some have intimated, but I do find myself compelled to comment on the applicability and significance of drawing a parallel between President Trump and King Cyrus. Continue reading “If Trump Is King Cyrus, Then What Does it Say About the American Church”

Does the Constitution Party Want to Establish a Theocracy?

This is not just a Constitution Party issue
but a question everyone needs to answer

A question, and sometimes accusation, that we in the Constitution Party are often confronted with is whether the party wants to establish a theocracy. The answer to the question depends on whose definition of “theocracy” you’re using.

The word theocracy originates from the Greek θεοκρατία meaning, “the rule of God.” So, if you’re asking whether the Constitution Party wants our nation to be subject to the rule of God, then the answer is “yes.” As in the pledge of allegiance, we want to be one nation “under God,” not a nation out from under God, or a nation in rebellion against God, but a nation in submission under the Creator and His revealed will for the governing of the civil societies of His creation, which will includes the restraining of evil, preservation of the moral order, justice, and the protection of individual, God-given rights.

However, when people accuse the Constitution Party of wanting to establish a theocracy, most of the time they are talking about the idea of the organized church directly running the institutions of civil government, or government passing laws that require specific religious practice or observance. If this is your definition of a theocracy, then the Constitution Party strongly opposes it. Continue reading “Does the Constitution Party Want to Establish a Theocracy?”

Scandal and Allegation: Is It News or Just Gossip?

Sex scandals and harassment allegations seem to be all the rage these days. From the accusations made against Roy Moore to the misadventures of news anchor Matt Lauer, Harvey Weinstein before them, and now Senator Al Franken and a host of others, America seems to be awash with salacious allegations against public figures of every kind.

The idea of the media trying people in the so-called court of public opinion is nothing new. The media has long enjoyed playing the roles of prosecutor, judge, jury, and sometimes the executioner that ends political careers. But is every scandal and allegation really news, or is it just gossip at best, slander at worst, and generally a distraction from the weightier matters that we should be paying attention to?

Perhaps we should first ask the question, “what is news?” I have long contended that real news should be defined as “actionable intelligence,” that is to say, factual information about the affairs of our society, and the greater world around us, presented in a manner that enables us to correctly understand, and intelligently interact with, both our society and the world at large. Continue reading “Scandal and Allegation: Is It News or Just Gossip?”

Are We Hearing Each Other?

I’ve recently taken increased notice of fellow believers publicly condemning so-called “prosperity preachers” and those in the “faith movement.” I agree with the basis for much of the criticism, that is to say, I agree that materialism and the love of money is indeed wrong; that the pulpit should not be used for financial profit; that the gospel should not be treated as a get rich quick scheme; that God should not be disrespectfully used as a giant vending machine in the sky; and I agree that some Christians have become more focused on the riches and comforts of this world than on the things of God and His kingdom, though that phenomenon is not limited to adherents of the prosperity message.

I have also taken notice that some of the very ministers that I have heard called out and condemned as being “prosperity preachers,” are themselves preaching against materialistic lusts, misplaced spiritual priorities, and abuses of the prosperity message. A perfect example of this is the quote at the beginning of this article which stands in direct contrast to what is generally attributed to prosperity preachers. Yet, that quote was actually taken from an article by a quintessential prosperity preacher – someone at the very center of the word of faith movement. Continue reading “Are We Hearing Each Other?”

It’s a Sign!

Why God’s People Should Not Be Led by External Phenomenon

It's a SignIn the weeks following last year’s Presidential election, I heard members of the Christian right referring to Donald Trump’s victory as, “divine intervention,” “an act of God,” and “a miracle.” Article headlines read, “Trump: President by the sovereign intervention of God,” and “Signs Of Divine Intervention In Trump Victory.” One article ended by quoting 1 Thessalonians 4:16 “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God” (emphasis mine). The Christian right was on an emotional high that ranged from exalted jubilation to giddy euphoria.

An item published on the website of Christian pollster, George Barna, stated, “In the eyes of Christians, God’s fingerprints are all over his (Trump’s) victory.” The article went on to equate Trump’s win with a miracle on the basis that it, “almost defies explanation; it makes little sense from a rational, empirical point of view. And that’s what a miracle is: God intervening to change our reality to align with His sovereign will.”

While reading one of these articles, it struck me that Christian people were taking the perceived improbability of Trump’s election win as “a sign” of divine intervention, and therefore, as affirmation of Mr. Trump as “God’s man” and of their choice in voting for him. Continue reading “It’s a Sign!”

Merry Christmas

The Story Behind The Christmas Story

saint-and-children-300pI expect we’re all aware that Christmas isn’t really about Black Friday sales and going to the mall to see how much stuff you can cram into the trunk of your car to haul home and put under a dead tree in your living room. I trust we all understand that Christmas is really about commemorating the first coming of Christ to earth when he came to be the Savior; the Redeemer; the Atoning Sacrifice; “the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.”

But Jesus came and did all those things long before we started celebrating “Christmas.” So where did Christmas come from? How did it get started and how did it develop into what it is today? And what about this Santa Claus character, what’s up with that?

There is a story behind the celebrating of Christmas, and behind Santa Claus too, and it begins with a fourth century saint – Saint Nicholas. I was recently treated to the telling of that story by one of America’s premier historians, Bill Federer, who was interviewed by my friend and fellow Constitution Party supporter, Cynthia Davis, on her Home Front podcast.

In addition to reading your favorite Bible passages about the Word being made flesh and dwelling among us, and maybe going to a special church service, and, of course, getting together with family on Christmas Day, and eating w-a-a-a-a-y too much, I encourage you to listen to this special message: “Is Santa Claus Real,” and to learn about the origins of the celebration of Christmas. I would hope that reviewing the roots of this holiday might become a habit with us and that it might lead to our emulating Saint Nicholas (Yes, he’s real!) and his acts of Christian charity.

Merry Christmas! May the Blessing of the Lord come upon you and overtake you in the coming year.

The Candidate They Don’t Want You to Know About

the-candidate-295pAs the pundits pontificate, the politicians bluster and blather, and the American public eagerly awaits the opening of Presidential debate season, there are only two things missing from American Presidential politics: 1) A news media willing to ask the real questions that address America’s moral condition, the candidate’s guiding principles, and the rule of law under the U.S. Constitution; and, 2) Candidates who comprehend America’s moral condition, possess guiding principles, and understand the rule of law under the U.S. Constitution.

There actually is a Presidential candidate in the race who does comprehend America’s moral condition, has guiding principles, and understands the rule of law under the U.S. Constitution. However, it appears the dominant media does not want the American public to find out about him. While Trump gets by far the most media coverage, Hillary less, and third party candidates receive minimal attention, only Darrell Castle of the Constitution Party has received “zero coverage” by ABC, CBS and NBC. Castle also just happens to be the only candidate in the race who is basing his policies on a Christian worldview, the principles of liberty through limited government and adherence to the U.S. Constitution. You don’t suppose there could be a connection there? Continue reading “The Candidate They Don’t Want You to Know About”

Set Education Free

2016-8-17 Set Education Free

A friend recently shared a photo with me in an email that caught my attention and prompted me to ponder, once again, the matter of education. In the picture, a child is asking her mother:

Why do I have to go to school?”

To which the mother replies:

So you can be molded into a state approved homogeneous drone that cannot think outside of the prescribed consensus. You will learn to repeat information instead of how to think for yourself so that you don’t become a threat to the status quo. When you graduate you will get a job and pay your taxes in order to perpetuate the corporate system of indentured servitude.”

Now, I’m not promoting the idea of there being some grand conspiracy here, nor am I indicating disdain for education in general. However, as someone who is inclined to question the accepted norms, I do see a lot of truth behind this satire. The mother’s statement speaks to me of the danger, and indeed, the folly, of a society placing education into the hands of government to have the power to mandate, regulate, and own and operate the infrastructure for the dispensing of this precious commodity.

In a free country, parents would choose the when, where, whether and how of the educating of their own children, not have it mandated by a government that chooses the curriculum and sets the standards. Likewise, in a free country, those individuals, to whom God has given the gift of being educators, would be free to educate with all of their intellect, ability and God-given gifting according to their own conscience, unfettered by an education bureaucracy telling them how to teach. In a truly free country, the education of children would be determined exclusively by parents and those educators whose assistance parents might choose to employ. Continue reading “Set Education Free”