U.S. on the verge
I’m going to throw a few things in together here, in dramatically increasing order of importance.
First, I’d like to make you aware of a great service from http://www.christianaudio.com. Each month they offer a free audiobook download. This month, for instance, it’s a reading of an updated version of Bunyan’s classic The Pilgrim’s Progress. Once in a while I like to listen to books rather than read, to give my eyes a rest, or for when I’m on the road a lot. You’ll have to sign up for an account, which is painless (I then use a filter so I never see any advertising except the free offers). Then you’ll need the code for this month’s download, which is PROG103. Finally, you’ll have a whole bunch of files to download, for which I recommend the Opera browser, which has a Links function by which you can do it all automatically.
Next, I’d like you to be aware that I’ve set up a public Google Docs site, at which I’m uploading good things that come my way. The link is over in the right sidebar, under Links. I have a general folder, one for Watchman Nee stuff, one for the Elijah List, and I just started one for Strom’s Revival list. Whenever I think something is particularly good, I’ll format it and post it. The files are read-only, but you can leave comments there in an open file in each folder, and you can download them for your own use.
Finally and most importantly, the U.S. is on the verge of a major political catastrophe. I’ve simply been aghast at the conduct of the Obama administration, with regard to the healthcare bill, the grossly corrupt parliamentary procedure that spawned it, and now our treatment of Israel.
I will not list the dishonest and disingenuous dealings that have characterized this presidency, but they have been legion. Plunging the nation into socialism against it will wasn’t enough. Completely violating any sense of Constitutionality was a light matter. In these final hours several previously opposed reps have caved, and it seems that the pro-life block may follow suit. Rep. Stupak has called a presser for tomorrow morning to make an announcement; it does not sound good.
And now we are punishing Israel and at the same time making life easy for the evil regime in Iran, by tritely withholding “bunker buster” bombs from Israel. These presumably would be the bombs to be used to level Iranian nuclear energy weapons facilities.
I’m not one to claim that the Israelis are perfect. Indeed, as Christian Jews increase there, persecution by ultra-orthodox Jews has increased. But regarding international politics, any nation surrounded by such implacable hostility has to be tough. My support of Israel rests on two points. First, Israel was stumbled so that the Gospel would go out to the world. Some day “all” Israel will come to Christ, but until then we are in its debt. Second, Israel stands morally head and shoulders above its enemies. There is no equivalency to be had here. Radical Islam, and its gift to the world, suicide bombing, must be opposed.
The last time we put major undo pressure on Israel – to abandon Gaza – it took exactly one week before the next suicide bombing made a mockery of the appeasement. But in the bargain, one day later the U.S. endured the greatest geological disturbance in its history, Hurricane Katrina. Coincidence you say? Maybe, but the Bible, Old and New Testaments, is full of examples of the elements mirroring the spiritual condition of God’s people.
Somehow, Israel will survive. The question is whether we will. I’ve been seeing dire prophecies concerning our nation. (Especially, see the powerfully-worded Dutch Sheets file I uploaded to the Google Docs site, above.) FWIW, Hal Lindsey has actually opined that this year the nation would break up into four parts. All this seems much less fantastic than it did even a few months ago. Internet chatter routinely mentions civil disobedience and even armed resistance to Obama’s totalitarian agenda.
No matter what happens, we who love the Lord are in His very capable hands. He can and will use anything, even the nation stepping off a cliff, to bring about His will. But He always prefers mercy to judgment, and in situations like ours He looks for intercessors to provide justification for pouring out His miraculous saving power. We need to be praying, in faith.
In times like this I’m especially grateful to be a Christian. It is abundantly clear that the entire world is built on shifting sand, has no virtue, and hasn’t a clue what it’s doing. There is only one immovable rock, and anyone who flees to Him for safety will not be disappointed. These are difficult times, but I’m enjoying the peace our position in Christ affords.
Addendum: Let me emphasize, the guys to pray for at this critical moment are Rep. Bart Stupak and the entire prolife block. The fate of the healthcare bill is largely in their hands, and the pressure/enticements on them has been enormous. Many of these guys are actually for the healthcare bill, save the abortion funding provision, so the opposition is hanging on a thin principled thread. Just how thin that thread is, I don’t know.
Addendum II: Now, on Saturday afternoon, comes news via HotAir that the Stupak deal, which would have sent the healthcare bill over the top, is permanently off. If true, this is very good news. But there has been so much shifting, as this bill is pressure-rammed through against the will of a large majority of the people, that it’s impossible to tell what’s really going on. I doubt that anyone really knows. As always, our strength is in God alone. May His ever-sweet will be done. I plead for mercy on this nation on the verge.