Monday, May 19, 2014

My April 2014 DaTechGuyBlog Columns (Plus a Bit of March)

Just so you know...I've been busy; I post at DaTechGuyBlog every Tuesday and Saturday, NLT 4PM PT as one of Da Magnificent Seven. Don't miss tomorrow's column!

I'll post the entirety of May's work at the end of the month. In the meantime, read these posts and posts from the other six Magnificent Ones.

Who's Abridging What?
4/29

Salad Snob
4/26

The Great Indoctrination
4/22

Weapon of War 2014
4/19

The Difference Between the Destination and the Journey
4/15

Hoffer's Prophecy
4/12

People of the Lie
4/5

Creativity
4/1

What That Ebony Mag-RNC Thing Was Really About
3/29

The Price of Woof Tickets
3/25

Too Tired
3/22

You People
3/18

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

What's Growing in Your Garden? (Re-Post)

Originally posted at Da Tech Guy Blog on January 28, 2014. 

Over at Ace of Spades HQ, my friend Monty expounds on a concept which I coined a number of years ago at my old blog and mentioned in an earlier Da Tech Guy post: The Coconut Treatment.
There is a price to be paid for divorcing actions and concepts from the words that describe them. Government, and the law that undergirds it, is made up of words. Devalue the words, strip them of meaning, and you do the same thing to the concepts those words describe. Action follows Thought, and for Thought to exist there must be the Word.
The sundering of meaning from the words to which they are assigned is merely a foundation for the hollowing out of the Old Order of things great and small. It is a demonic seed which mirrors the mustard seed concept of the Kingdom of Heaven as illustrated by Jesus the Christ.

Where God is the author of Order, he who wishes to be His counterpart sows the Tree of Chaos. Meet the New Boss.

tree
Seeds require nourishment in order to flourish. And just as the seed of Faith will flourish with the items recommended—prayer, reading God’s Word, fasting, giving, and obedience to God—so it is with the seed of Lies.

In his short, excellent post, Monty references Orwell’s Newspeak coinage, but the concept is much older than 1984it’s one which started very simply in the Garden when the Enemy planted doubt about the truth of God’s Word. Since then, the war has been ongoing and the enemy has always been able to find foot-soldiers--individuals, groups and nations—who will water his tree of Lies.

That tree has a fancy and useful name now—postmodernism--but it is merely the tool used to deceive mankind and, ultimately, to separate as many of us as possible from our Creator.

Primary Example: Love

God defines three types of love--agape, phileo and eros—and these definitions have a special order in that the third is meaningless without the first two.

The new Love has a two-pronged definition: 1) giving a person whatever he/she wants, and 2) approving anything another wants to do. Its basis leads back to the disobedience in the Garden.

And from the seed planted by the new definition of love we get the conceptual fruit: new definitions for rights, racism, oppression…the list is endless.

The fruit and the branches are manifold. From the new “love” seed we get conceptual trees such as communism/progressivism/Marxism/socialism, “settled” science, and the Common Core(d) method of education—concepts with evil foundations and self-contradictory foundations or those in which foundations are unnecessary.

What to do? I’ve mentioned the solution in almost every one of my posts here [sic] at Da Tech Guy blog. But the first thing to do is recognize the faulty seeds which have been planted in oneself and to root them out. The usual evil seed which needs weeding is that same one which got the Enemy thrown out of Heaven: pride.

According to God, pride is always a sin. This includes pride of race, pride of ethnicity, pride of gender, pride of accomplishment, pride of relation, pride of nationality (yes)—many types of pride which we erroneously view as harmless or even good. That view is a seed for the larger tree: the “bad” types of pride; they all supersede the hand of the Dispenser of all good things. (To turn another concept on its head, you didn't build that. God did.)

So, I suggest that we each start with letting God remove the weeds from our individual souls—rebuilding the foundation of Truth in our individual thinking. In turn follows the larger removal of weeds from our families, and, after that, from our nation.

The weeding and watering have to start somewhere.

Unhappy Obama Home (Re-Post)

Originally posted at Da Tech Guy Blog on January 21, 2014. I have fallen a bit behind on the re-posts.

Most people are familiar with King Solomon’s observation that it is
Better to live on a corner of the roof
than share a house with a quarrelsome wife.
--Proverbs 25:24 (KJV)

Well, my personal observation is the flip side of that coin: it’s better for a woman to live alone that to live with a man who is indifferent to her feelings. And the two--love and respect--feed from each other; the same is true for contentiousness (anger) and indifference.

And both truths point to God’s recommendation that a husband should love his wife and that a wife should respect her husband.

Last week [see above], it was reported in the National Enquirer that the Obama marriage is deeply on the rocks.  The usual issues are reported to be factors—and I’m not saying that they aren’t—but exploring those things isn’t my purpose.

I’ve always had a certain amount of empathy for Michelle Obama. The similarities in age and background are part of it. Many of my decisions have been radically different from hers, however, and there are severa she made which I wish I had made: finished my formal education, got married early, had children.

But there’s at least one decision I made that gives me peace: many years ago I divorced an uncaring man. Conversely and for many obvious reasons, Mrs. Obama chose to stay with her patently uncaring husband and, since she has been in the national spotlight, she has always behaved like a woman who has an unhappy home life.
MichellObamafrown1
MichellObamafrown4
 MichellObamafrown3
Many people don’t like her and that’s understandable. Unhappy people tend to be unlikable and say obnoxious things.

I’ve talked before about being grateful for the good things in one’s life and, aside from our diverging decisions, that’s where Mrs. Obama and I part company. Being content with decisions made in life—no matter how they turn out--is the key. Ingratitude and resentment nearly jump out of every photo of the woman. And in nearly every photo of her looking at her husband, her anger--hatred?--is etched on her face. (Yes, yes. I’d be mad, too, if I were married to him.)

If it’s true that the marriage has long been in trouble—and I think it is—then Mrs. Obama has to live with her decision to remain married to Barack Obama, make the best of it and count her blessings—and I can think of two of her blessings right off the top of my head.

Money, status, fame, clothing, vacations, high-end personal care—Mrs. Obama has all of those things. But none of them compensate for the absence of love in her home.

And, though it was her own decision to stay, I pity her.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

God Does What He Wants

Does God make exceptions to His rules? Whether He does or not is the overarching theme of a friendly contention for the faith--also known as argument--that I've had with several Christian men in regard to women being pastors of churches.

First let's cite the relevant passages:

34 Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law. 

--1 Corinthians 14:34 (KJV)

Clearly, the apostle Paul did not want women to be leaders in churches or to even speak--or so it appears. But what are we to make of the following verse?

35 And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

The words 'woman' and 'wife' are use synonymously in the Hebrew language of the Old Testament and the Greek of the New Testament. One has to know the context of the verse and chapter to know which one the writer means. To which one is Paul referring?

Here's a clue. Paul tells the Corinthian men to tell their “women” to ask their husbands questions at home if the “women” want to learn anything about the church. So who will the women who are not married ask? Who will widows go to in order to learn about being saved? What about the unmarried daughters?

Or could it be that Paul was referring only to the wives of the men in the Corinthian church?

And if Paul wanted no women to be deacons, what are we to make of these words written by him?

1 I commend unto you Phebe our sister, which is a servant of the church which is at Cenchrea: 2 That ye receive her in the Lord, as becometh saints, and that ye assist her in whatsoever business she hath need of you: for she hath been a succourer of many, and of myself also.  
--Romans 16:1-2 (KJV)

The NIV renders it this way:

1 I commend to you our sister Phoebe, a deacon of the church in Cenchreae.  2 I ask you to receive her in the Lord in a way worthy of his people and to give her any help she may need from you, for she has been the benefactor of many people, including me.
 
So was Phoebe a deacon or merely a church helper, a servant? And notice that she is to receive help, not give it.

According to Strong's concordance, the Greek word used in the relevant passage is number 1249. Here's the definition:

servant, minister, a person who renders help to others, in some contexts with an implication of lower status; also transliterated as "deacon," a trusted officer of helps and service in the local church

(Emphasis mine.)

Paul uses the 1249 version translated as 'deacons' or servant in Philipians 1:1, 1Timothy 3:8 and 1Timothy 3:12. That word in the Greek is diakonos. But there is another word which is translated as deacon or servant that Paul uses to describe deacons, even his servant Timothy, and it's almost the same word: diakoneo. So what's the difference?

Was Phoebe was just a menial or was she a leader to boot? What if Paul made an exception to his rule about suffering women to speak in the church? Could he do that? Was he allowed by his master, The Lord Jesus the Christ to do that?

Let's see by concentrating on what we know to be true and by inferring from that.

Paul was a servant of our Lord Jesus the Christ who was God in the flesh. Did God make exceptions to any of his rules? Let's check it out.

In Exodus 13, God says that the eldest child (male) is the anointed one--the heir of a given family. The concept is called primogeniture.

But was Isaac Abraham's eldest? No. Ishmael was.

Was Jacob/Israel Isaac's eldest? No. Esau was.

Was Judah Jacob's eldest? No. Reuben was. 

Was David Jesse's eldest? No.

Were either Solomon or Nathan David's eldest? No. David had many other older sons.

And did Jesus the Christ's earthly line stem from all eldest males? No. He was descended from Judah and from David's youngest, Nathan.

Let's see if God made exceptions to some of His other rules.

In  Deuteronomy 7:1-3, God told the Israelites not to marry the Gentiles in the area.

But what of Rahab the harlot, David's great grandmother, and of Ruth the Moabitess, David's grandmother who, by the way, is the only Gentile who has a book in the Old Testament named after her?

God does what He wants to do when necessary--and when He wants to demonstrate a principle to humankind (the courtship and marriage of Ruth and Boaz, for example). And because he gave human beings free will, sometimes the human beings who are anointed by Him will fail Him. When that happens, God moves to Plan B--and God always has a Plan B.

With respect to female pastors, I think that most women are not suited to for that role because most of us are too emotional--the way God made us. And even those of us who are not too emotional to be pastors have higher, God-prescribed callings: to be wives and mothers.

However, there are a very few women who are able to keep their emotions in check and who don't have the responsibilities involving a husband or children. I think that God sometimes calls those very few to lead.

Here's how you know who they are:

1. They are not beset by the previously-mentioned responsibilities, and,
2. Their subject matter is the Word of God or topics related and that only.

That last requirement is a must for male pastors as well, of course.

For the most part, Paul was right about women. But he wasn't God. God can do what He wants with whom He wants—this is inherent of the concept of sovereignty. It's up to each follower of Jesus the Christ to see what God's will is and His will can only be determined by talking (prayer) and listening (reading the Bible).

Here's a revelation, one that is not so original: God is not a legalist.