Thursday, July 30, 2009

Why, The "Third" Angel's Message?

Adventists have a "vocabulary unique to their belief that is just like the vocabulary one would find in any other church and even in the sciences. Not everyone is fluent in Adventistese. It takes a while to learn and understand the "insider" shorthand that we hear in Sabbath School, church and around the table at potlucks.

Some phrases are innocent enough while others display exclusivity and even and (unwarranted, I think) arrogance. There is need to expunge the arrogance and embrace the innocent.

Back to the point the Third Angel...

The work of the First Angel finished with the announcement of the Judgment. The Second Angel gave a matter-of-fact (not even loud) update on the status of Babylon and its inhabitant Beast, so, the messages of the first and second angels are history; but the work of the Third Angel is future...just not very far in the future. For review, it goes like this; "Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, 'If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of god, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb..." [Rev. 14:9,10].

In Psalms 75:8 we find a verse that parallels part of the third angel's message; "For in the hand of the Lord there is a cup, and the wine is red; fully mixed, and He pours it out; surely its dregs shall all the wicked of the earth drain and drink down."

Our work; the work of the church; the work of every true believer, is to warn the world of the consequences of having a mark on the forehead (right behind is the frontal lobe of the brain where one evaluates and decides) or in the hand (which is symbolic when one is asked to "lend a hand." to help out even though they may not agree in principle with the project...the frontal lobe...

Think on these important things and "decide" to serve the Lord.

God bless. e.c.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Hotter 'n Hell

It's interesting the way expressions of religious beliefs...of a sort... become part of our national vocabulary. It's not that they have any transformatory power over the thinking and behavior of those who use them, obviously they don't.
The phrase, "Hotter 'n Hell". most of us have used or heard, unless of course we've been living in a Mason jar...sorry, I had no control over that pun. Which brings me to the point of this introduction: Does God torture sinners with fire for eternity?
If we think about it, there is a fundamental disconnect between believing in a God of Love and the same God who would torture (with fire) forever and ever. Such a juxtaposing of the two ideas brings shudders of fear and horror, and that was the goal because this is what a lot of people believe. Satan has done his work of distorting what people believe about God.
Question: if "God so loved the world that..." then why would he spend eternity "getting even" with those who, for this short life, choose to ignore and/or deny Him? It doesn't make sense, but evidently, it doesn't have to, because there are plenty of preachers who "like" to preach a forever hell because it scares the hell out of the poor souls who listen.
Of course the Bible says that "God is love" [somewhere in first John] but no matter, the furnace has been heated seven times hotter and is waiting to be fed the souls of sinners. Hmmm...didn't God deliver three young men from a furnace in Babylon? Maybe there's a lesson here.
In order to be God, He has to be love, He has to be fair, He has to be just, He has to exercise all righteousness, He has to be merciful, He has to finish the list.
Here is my conclusion and recommendation: look to Jesus Christ and measure His words, His actions of healing, mercy, His life of suffering and death on the cross and then carefully weigh the question; "Is this the God who would torture sinners forever and ever with fire because they didn't believe?
Please don't recite the parable of Lazarus and the rich man [Luke chapter 16] because that is a parable in the midst of several parables and Christ used parables to teach principles and thought lessons; not doctrine. If you take the time to look in the back of Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible you will find a list of parables and this one is listed. Still, some use this as a basis for believing that Heaven and Hell are just a shout away from each other and the "saved" get to watch the "lost" be in torment for eternity. That would be heaven?? I don't, I won't, I can't believe it.
Be Blessed! e.c.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Ten Virgins. Again?

My perception is, that the church is getting tired of keeping trimmed lamps and waiting for the Bridegroom. Sadly (as I read a some posts on a recent NARLA blog--I wrote about this already) a few are cynical and critical of those who are into lamp-trimming.
This is to be expected-I guess-because half the virgins got tired of the whole waiting thing and took a nap. Naps are OK and at my age I believe in naps and awake revived. But virginal napping is a different breed of sleep because on waking the five were not revived, but were confused.
Confusion will be the Headline of the day in every church newsletter that is forward-thinking and brave enough to tell the church what it ought to hear and what it needs to hear.
Lamp-trimmers want to listen to sermons that encourage staying the course and staying close to Christ. Sleepy virgins may want to get on with napping. I guess what bothered me the most in my reading over the past week or so is the level of sarcasm--and even ridicule--that came from the elect who elect to stay awake. I was saddened by the dark words of one who found himself "amused" because some of the virgins were excited about the nearerness of Christ's coming.
George Knight, in his book of Neutering and relevance tells of talking to one (alleged) church intellectual who said to George, "I can't believe you still believe this stuff." Never one for lack of words George quickly trimmed his lamp and replied, "Well, if you're so smart, how come you're still in the church?" (read, among the awaiting virgins).
There's a lot to do while waiting and not all of it is glamorous, famous, or newsworthy; but it is laboring for the Lord, and what is more important than that?
Don't weary of waiting for Jesus. Don't allow the spirit of the nappers to infect your enthusiasm. Don't listen to, or take time to read infective, invective, missals that fly from the pens of cynics and nappers. Live in the shadow of the Jesus, The Christ.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Ezra Sez

The prophet of the Lord is writing about the rebuilding of the Temple of the Lord after the 70-year Babylonian captivity. He writes: "When the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the Lord, the priests stood in their apparel with trumpets, and the Levites, the sons of Asaph, with cymbals, to praise the Lord, according to the ordinance of David king of Israel. And they sang responsively, praising and giving thanks to the Lord:
'For He is good
For His mercy endures forever toward Israel.'
Then all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid.
The first foundation of the Seventh-day Adventist church was laid in eternity when God made plans for the creation of the world, its inhabitants, and His Sabbath. I can imagine hearing all the sons of God shouting with joy in praise of Creation.
I also remember reading that those who laid the second foundation of our church shouted for joy as they discovered truths long obscured by tradition, misinterpretation, and misunderstanding.
Of course, shouting in church these days is thought unacceptable ,but praise to God is always acceptable. Ezra goes on to say that "...the people could not discern the noise of the shout of joy from the noise of the weeping of the people, for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the sound was heard afar off." [Ezra 3:10-13].
The church school is bursting at the seams (see letter from m.lp.), the child care center is filled, and the church...the church is praying and building on the solid foundation of Jesus Christ. This is the week of Vacation Bible School and each member ought to pray that God will give us reason to shout for joy because we were able to tell the children about Jesus Christ.
Today, go outside, into the woods, or to a room in the back of your house and shout for joy to the Lord. Try it. It might feel Good. I think God might be caught off guard and ask, "What was that?" and the covering cherub would answer, "Oh, that was just your people in Shelton shouting for the joy of Your blessings." And God would answer, "Oh. Good! Very good!"
God bless.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Go Phish

We took a little time-out from the work we're doing around the place and ventured out in the paddle boat. Of course I grabbed the lone fishing pole (whose job it is to lean against the house summer and winter) and then got the worms we keep in the refrigerator.
You know what? You can't leave worms in the refrigerator for two months. They die!; but I took 'em anyway. This was a first fishing trip for Domino (4.7 lb., part Papillon, part toy poodle) and she was all sported out in her new tiny-size pfd.
The dogs were really interested in the dead worms. Fortunately they didn't smell dead to me but even if they had it wouldn't have made any difference to the dogs; especially Domino.
So we trolled along for an hour or so.The dogs didn't care the worms were dead and neither did the fish. But these weren't real fish, they were those rude little pan-fry kind that just eat worms-dead or alive-until they get to the hook, where they stop biting. There's always lots of them around when the weather gets warm and the trout go to cooler water on the bottom. It wasn't too hot. There was a nice breeze out of the North and everyone seemed to have a good time...except the worms.
Have a good sleep and God Bless. e.c.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Too Funny....

Just a short note: This morning on 3ABN a preacher was doing what preachers do best; preaching. He was about to read Psalms 33:6 and 9, so, I started to quote it before he began reading. (Now the background here is that Jeane has been training our new little dog, Domino, to do several tricks on command and one of them is, "speak."
Domino was sitting next to me on the couch looking at if she were trying to understand...when I started quoting verse nine "(For He spake and it was done. He commanded and it stood fast.") You can see what's coming. When I said "spake" Domino barked, once and sat looking at me with eyes asking, "Where is my treat? I spoke."
Too funny. We cracked up laughing. Thank you Lord for creating the animals.
God Bless.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Memorize This...

"Those who are true to God need not fear the power of men nor the enmity of Satan. In Christ their eternal life is secure. Their only fear should be lest they surrender the truth, and thus betray the trust with which God has honored them." [The Desire of Ages. pg. 370.8]
It is no different now than with the infant church; people listened to the Lord, His Disciples, the Apostles, for a time they believed and then were no more in the midst of the congregation.
In my church there are empty seats previously occupied by some who were deacons, believers and attendees. Who is safe from the whisperings and deceptions of the evil one? The question is already answered. "...Those who are true to God..." Is it fair, or is it unfair to pose the question; 'Those that are now gone, were they, or were they not, true to God?'
Though brave/foolish enough to pose the question I am not Omniscient, as is the Christ, and dare not even attempt an answer...nor even to think about one. But this I know; seats that were occupied now are not, and I find that very disturbing.
We call ourselves a friendly church and have been called the same by some now habitually absent. Why? Has it anything to do with "being friendly"? I simply don't know. Are then contentions and dissatisfaction's that have driven people away? (Same answer).
This one thing I know; neither man nor Satan is able to separate anyone from Him who have determined to be true.
A few questions have been posed today but I will add one; "Will you too determine to be true to Jesus Christ? I may not know you but I can pray for you simply because you chose to read this post. Amen. e.c.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Congress In a Hurry

Have you noticed what is happening in the nation's capitol? Sotomayor is on an ultra fast track for confirmation to the Supreme Court. The president and congress are pushing to get an umbrella health care package passed before Congress' August recess. What's the point?
The point is eschatalogical; it is the end times of this world and the fact that "...the final movements will be rapid..." [EW].
To the Essayist, Sotomayor is both meaningless and meaningful. She is meaningless becaue she is just another of a long line of privileged persons to sit on the United States Supreme Court. She is meaningful because she is, or should be, beholden to the Church of Rome; that is if she takes seriously her Catholicity. This means that in times of national or international distress, Sotomayor will (most probably) vote in a way that will advance Rome's political and religious agenda. Though there are other points (not to be discussed), she is meaningful because few have matched or exceeded the speed of the congressional confirmation process that is demonstrated in her case. (By the way, in this discussion gender is irrelevant).
The pushing and lobbying (assumed to be armed and gone active) illustrates the verity of Ellen White's words regarding the speed of last-day events. What the church is watching, or should be watching, are final events. Where are we in this continuum? I have no idea though I am convinced I'd rather be caught watching than not.
Finally, the speed of these events the world over is breathtaking and inspiring. Each believer ought to find inspiration (after the breathtaking bit) and expectation in the soon coming of Jesus Christ. What are those six words that EW uses to help pump up the church? "Get ready, get ready, get ready."
If you are naked, eagerly grasp the cloak of righteousness Christ is holding out to you. Next, put it on. Lastly, tell your neighbors He has a white robe for each of them as well. If you're thinking of going to your closet and putting on something of your own making (that would be righteousness by works) forget it. Nothing passes the inspecting eye of the Father God but the Righteousness of Jesus Christ: Nothing!
Have a Blessed Sabbath day.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Aufgabe Eins: How To Destroy A Church

Lesson One: How to destroy a church. Strident factions in the Episcopal Church are showing the rest of the world how they are destroying the history, significance, and relevance of their church.
In a New York Times piece, writer Laurie Goodstein exposes the actions of church bishops who voted this last Monday to " 'any ordained ministry' to gay men and lesbians, a move that could effectively undermine a moratorium on ordaining gay bishops that the church passed at its last convention three years ago."
The Episcopalian Church (a branch of the Anglican Communion) is the world's third largest family of Christian churches. "Conservative provinces in the Anglican Communion, especially some in Africa, have broken off their ties with the Episcopal Church after the church consecrated Bishop Gene Robinson, the first openly gay bishop in the communion, who was elected to the diocese of New Hampshire six years ago."
Question: How does a church "consecrate" a man (person) doing what God has called an abomination? [Lev. 18:22].
The Hebrew word, tow ebah [Strong's 8441] can also . mean, "a disgusting thing, abominable, an [ethical] wickedness." As previously posited, God wrote His opinion of the practice of homosexuality in the ashes of Sodom and Gomorrah.
Yet-and this is the part that is difficult to understand-the bishops of the Episcopal Church apparently believe, as do other churches, that they have the authority to edit the Word of God to their convenience and to the words' irrelevance. Curious, don't you think?
There is little doubt that homosexuals have assumed power and that they are wielding to their every advantage and other's disadvantage at every opportunity.
The Rev. Susan Russel, a priest in Los Angeles who is the president of Integrity USA, an advocacy group for gay men and lesbians in the church, said in a statement late Monday, "There is no question that today's vote in the House of Bishops was an historic move forward and a great day for all who support the full inclusion of all the baptized in the Body of Christ."
It would be well for all gays and lesbians to attend church! that is a given. What is not a given is that they continue their lifestyle under the supposed umbrella of the church, and that the church is able to consecrate that lifestyle. Again I have to ask; how does a church consecrate and abomination? The answer is not elusive nor complicated; it doesn't, it can't.
Now you know how to divide and destroy a church; from the inside out.
Pray for these misguided children of God who are offering "strange fire" to the Lord [Lev. 10:1, Num. 3:4].

Listening to The "Saints"

Earlier this week NARLA (the religious liberty arm of the SDA church) posted a piece about Benedict XVI and his latest encylical, "Veritas in Caritate" (Charity in Truth). I read it regularly but this time I clicked on the box that would allow me to see what others have written. It has been interesting.
While the response is not overwhelming (itself an underwhelming commentary on Adventist awareness/interest) there have been about twenty messesages a day from NARLA, and I have read each and every one.
My response? I am both encouraged and discouraged. Encouragement comes from those messages that echo a longing for Christ's return. Others encourage us to stay close to Christ and do more for Him in spreading the Gospel. Discouragement comes from reading (men, in every case) the cynical, skeptical comments about Adventists getting excited, again, about some bit of news that raises hopes Christ's return.
Here is my response; if you (speaking editorially and not personally) are not excited about the Christ and are not daily looking forward to His appearing; searching the sky (so to speak) for that small dark cloud, then what are you doing here? Why not take the stench of cynicism and skepticism out of the pew, out of the church, and pour your attitude back into the cup of its source.
Do not misunderstand! I do not wish even one soul to forsake Christ and leave His fellowship nor body of believers. Christ died for cynics and skeptics as well as saints. We in the church drink from a common cup of fellowship and the waters in the cup should be stirred with love rather than the acid of bitterness.
Some among us style ourselves as intellectuals whose job it is to question everything, look askance at everyone, and accept nothing Prima Facie (literally, "from first face.")
Regarding the attitudes of some of the men who wrote, consider these points; 1). the Bible suggests that it was mostly women who supported Christ both financially and relationally; 2). it was the men who betrayed, criticised, niggled, balked, rejected, and killed Him. (This may or may not be significant); 3). It was a woman that broke the news of His resurrection to mostly disbelieving disciples; 4). 60 years ago in my home church (Tacoma), in our circle the women went to church while their husbands stayed home...that is until they had their heart attack and realised a sudden need for God.
Women in Christ, keep up the good work for God and don't give up on us hard-headed, hard-hearted men.
God bless. e.c.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

First ya say ya do, and then ya don't...

Heads of State are politicians. Benedict XVI is head of Vatican State; therefore Benedict XVI is a politician...which most probably explains why he chose to "bless" the final Harry Potter film.
"The Vatican has broken with its traditional stance on Harry Potter and given the latest film its seal of approval. In a review of the blockbuster the official Vatican newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano, said Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince made clear the difference between “good and evil”.Under the headline “Magic is no longer a game of surprise”, reviewer Gaetano Vallini praised the film's special effects and the development of the lead characters saying they were “far more credible” than previous episodes."
(Nick Pisa, in Rome14.07.09)
This is curious. Evidently time heals theological opinions for in 2003 Cardinal Ratzinger (the now Benedict XVI) held a polar opinion; "In 2003, before becoming Pope Benedict XVI, the then Cardinal Ratzinger criticised the “subtle seductions” in the Potter series. He said the movies could “corrupt the Christian faith”."
But when Ratzinger moved into the Vatican quarters vacated by John Paul II his criticism was even more harsh; "New Pope BENEDICT XVI has blasted JK ROWLING's HARRY POTTER books for "undermining the soul of Christianity".Nicknamed 'GOD'S ROTTWEILER', Pope Benedict is set to confuse Catholics across the world because his predecessor JOHN PAUL II praised the multi-millionairess for her Christian lifestyle.Benedict, formerly CARDINAL JOSEPH RATZINGER is grateful to HARRY POTTER - GOOD OR BAD author GABRIELE KUBY for revealing the hidden agendas behind the popular children's books. He says, "It is good that you explain the facts of Harry Potter, because this is a subtle seduction, which has deeply unnoticed and direct effects in undermining the soul of Christianity before it can really grow properly." Leading Christian theologian UTA RANKE-HEINEMANN, 77, comments, "The Vatican feels it has the copyright on what is good and what is evil and it does not want anyone else infringing its right to this monopoly."It will condemn anyone who tries to enter this territory without its permission." CB Movie Discussion Forum & Message Board
But there is a little bit more. A Catholic priest in Austria was seemingly forced to decline promotion after being bitterly criticised for airing his opinions of Rowling and Harry Potter; "While criticizing Rowling for omitting any explicit "reference to the transcendent" in her books, L'Osservatore said the latest installment nevertheless makes clear that good should overcome evil "and that sometimes this requires costs and sacrifice."
"In addition, the spastic search for immortality epitomized by Voldemort is stigmatized," the review said.
The Vatican's praise follows the sharp criticism of the Harry Potter series by a conservative Austrian priest at the center of a church crisis earlier this year.
The Rev. Gerhard Maria Wagner had characterized Harry Potter novels as Satanism, while also suggesting Hurricane Katrina, which ravaged New Orleans and surrounding areas, was provoked by sin.
Pope Benedict XVI promoted Wagner to the post of auxiliary bishop in Linz, Austria's third largest city, in January. But amid an outcry among Austrian Catholics over his comments, Wagner eventually gave up the promotion

Seventh-day Adventists hold an official unequivocal opinion: Quarrelsome endtime events will center on two great evils...Sunday sacredness and the state of the dead; Harry Potter is a "children's story" about spirits, witches, and Rowling has described herself as a wikka-a good witch.
This is so confusing. Maybe we should try not to "think on it."
God Bless. e.c.

Monday, July 13, 2009

They Did Not Like to Retain God in Their Knowledge

Paul, writing with a sharp quill, points out what becomes of those who do not like to retain God in their knowledge.
"God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness, full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them." [Romans 1:28b-32].
Considering Paul's list, some of the things he lists seem pretty tame while others are obviously vile. For example; who are the whisperers and what is whispering? The Greek word Paul uses ,a Greek word you probably don't need to know (Strong;s #5588), lists "secret slanderers" and "detractor" as synonyms.
Does it seem a little harsh that God considers me "deserving of death" if I engage in a little whispering or slander? probably the same as gossip, don't you think. Perhaps a little harsh, and yet, perhaps not. For what place in heaven is being prepared for those of us who tear down, criticize, divide, whisper? The answer is obvious; there is no place for such things will not be found in heaven. If they were, how could it be heaven?
This list is long and hard to read because in it we find ourselves; maybe in more than one place. What is the cure for whispering? Whisperers anonymous? No. There is only one healing for any and all of the maladies of character and motive Paul lists; and that cure is the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Have you invited Him into your life today to lead, purify, and prepare you to live in the presence of a Holy God? If you're going to whisper, then "whisper a prayer in the morning" and invite the Spirit of Jesus Christ into your life.
God Bless. e.c.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Be Shrill?

I'm reading Andree Seu...again...and am always (World, 04 July 2009, pg. 98). She sets the background by quoting Tom Ridge's comments about Rush Limbaugh. Ridge says, "Well, I think Rush articulates his point of view in ways that offend very many. It's a matter of language and a matter of how you use words. It does get the base all fired up and he's got a strong following. But personally, if he would listen to me...the notion is, express yourselves but let's respect others' opinions and let's not be divisive...let's be less shrill."
After a short segue she says, "I was imaging the High Priest Caiaphas in Ridge's interviewee's seat on CNN:" 'Well, I think Jesus articulates his point of views in ways that offend very many. It's a matter of language and a matter of how you use words. It does get the base all fired up and he's got a strong following. But personally, if he would listen to me...the notion is, express yourselves but let's respect others' opinions and let's not be divisive...let's be less shrill."
Mark this point she makes; "If you want to talk about divisive, the Bible says it's not bad to be divisive for a good purpose, as when there's some winnowing to be done: "For there must also be factions among you, that those who are approved may be be recognized among you.' [I Corinthians 11:19].
If Seu's words deserve a conclusion I will take the risk to tell you what I think it is: When God puts a burden on your heart (and He has, or will) you have to act, and in these days action is required. 'When the Holy Spirit puts a thought in your mind, speak it.' (Thanks, Dwight Nelson).
If what Andree writes is true, then the following men and women of history were "shrill:: the Apostle Paul, Luther, Huss, Zwingli, Calvin, Cromwell, Fox, Knox, Melanchthon, Wycliff...William Miller, Ellen White...and perhaps...perhaps you...and maybe even me.
Pray to God that we will have the courage to speak for Jesus Christ on every day and every occasion we are blessed with opportunity to witness. Pray for opportunity to be "shrill" after the manner of Jesus Christ and the men and women of history named above (there were others) who came after Him and followed Him. I figure you've figured it out; that to be "shrill" in Christ is to be courageous and not be intimidated by opinion, criticism, condemnation, or persecution.
Speak to others about Him. Soon it will be too late...soon.
God bless. e.c.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Universal Health Care

Seventh-day Adventists have a health plan; a universal health care plan sent by the Creator of the universe. There are some really great things about this plan;
1. It was designed by God
2. It is human-health specific
3. All humanity can benefit whether they "buy" into it or not
4. It is free to everyone
5. You might not ever have to see a doctor or be rushed to the hospital
6. Practically no one has to take insulin
7. Practically no one needs bypass surgery
8. Lung cancer would be history...mostly

Of course you know that I'm talking about a plant-based diet. Here are a few real and essential benefits of that diet;
1. It's difficult to be obese eating food as it is grown (maple bars don't grow)
2. Tomatoes don't clog the coronary arteries
3. Zucchini doesn't cause diabetes
4. Gourd plants (all kinds of squash) don't raise blood pressure
5. Using very little salt (only what is naturally in some plants) is not harmful
6. One can (usually) fit into the clothes they wore at age 30
7. The pharmacist isn't one of the people you visit on a regular basis
8. Your physician will wonder why your appointments are few-to-none

But of course, who wants to live like that? Answer: God wants all of His children to live like that. He designed our bodies, created and built them and then set the table and made..."out of the ground grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food..." Oh yes, I forgot; the tree of life was there too. [Genesis 2:9]
The plan is simple, the diet is simple, the food is simple, but some of us simpletons too often choose to set our own table and pile the food on our plates. Do we know that people who under eat live longer than those who overeat? Of course we do. (And not unlike Paul's statement, I used to be chief among those who overate so I have experienced what it is of which I speak; and I have been overweight; and I have been hypertensive (high blood pressure), and I was prediabetic; and for a time physicians thought I had had a TIA (transient ischemic attack; sort of like a prestroke). It was a warning!
So what happened? Well, many already know the story but here it is again in abstract form: My wife put me on a plant-based diet, stopped using all dairy products, served only plant-based fats (olives, olive oil, avocados), stopped cooking high glycemic foods (white rice, white potatoes, white grained pasta) and switched to whole grain foods...and there are lots of them out there and readily available in almost every supermarket.
And the results? My doctor keeps reducing my high blood pressure by half (twice now), 28 pounds lighter, 32 inch waist (had to give away clothes that were too big), no more panic attacks (we've deduced these were from too much refined foods), cholesterol dropped 50 points...I could probably go on but I sense some may be getting bored.
Adventists have a health message to give to their neighbors and the world but some of us hide it under the macaroni and cheese, potato salad, and cookies on our plate. That was me, so I have every right to talk about these things and to chasten and chide my church brothers and sisters who have not yet "got it."
Be certain; God wants us to "get it."
Don't just think on these them.
God Bless. e.c.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

A New World Order of Ethical Economics

Benedict XVI issued a new encyclical, "Caritas in Veritate, " (Truth in Charity) on the same day the G8 were meeting to consider ways to reconstruct and reform the global economy which has been in free fall. The Vatican bank itself is not immune to the vagaries of the economy and has lived in a sort of financial purgatory with deficits of slightly more than 9 million for the past two years. (The Vatican Bank was recently cleared of corruption charges filed against an Italian bank, in which the Vatican was invested.)
Benedict is calling for financial ethos; an ethical/moral system of world-wide monetary management that transcends profit for its own sake and seeks more inclusiveness of the world's poor and impoverished.
Such aspirations, even by one as influential as Benedict, are laudable but in vain. I think of the words of Christ [Matthew chapter 24] and Daniel [chapter 12] where the picture is painted of a "worsening" rather than "bettering" of world conditions as the end of all things approaches.
It is humanism at its height of arrogance that purports to "reason" the world into an era of lasting peace and prosperity. In my view, Benedict represents spiritual humanism cloaked in the splendor of purple and scarlet...with a touch of white. The bankers and Bernankes of the world represent financial humanism...thinking that they can reason themselves, their nations, and the world from crisis to peace purely through the nativity of thought and collective counsel.
It won't happen. And why would I be so temeritous as to posit an obvious closed-end opinion? The answer is this: Any persons who hold the Bible as the Word of God and believe that it contains not just truth, but "the" Truth, the Way, and the Light, understands that things will eventually end (as prophesied) and are closely watching world events as the clock of time unwinds and eventually stops with the return of Jesus Christ.
Legislate if you will. Lend and borrow if you will. Tax as you will...and do...but none of these will slow the train of Christ and His coming any more than the pennies we would put on the tracks when we were children. The pennies were always crushed and so when Christ stands up, lays aside the attributes of the Lamb and girds Himself as the Lion of the tribe of Judah, He will take vengeance on all evil and doers of evil.
Write on Benedict. But perhaps it would be better to read the Bible and the Bible only to discern the difference between the plans of God and those of man.
Think on these things; and while doing that, invite the Holy Spirit to make you ready for the second coming of the Christ. e.c.

Monday, July 6, 2009


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Murder By Order of AB/GYN College

I was reading "World Magazine" again this weekend when I happened on an article written by a Dr. Matt Anderson in the June 20, 2009 issue, page 62.
Anderson, writing about the political/moral/ethical influence the American College of OB/GYN is bringing to bear on OB/GYN board candidates says the following: "Of course, we doctors don't take Hippocrates' Oath any longer and haven't for decades. New doctors recite a much changed charge filled with superficial, contemporary language, if they recite anything at all. Hippocrates' Oath has been relegated to the dustbin of modern ethical thought. 'I will neither give a deadly drug to anybody if asked for it, nor will I make a suggestion to this effect, Similarly I will not give a woman an abortive remedy," it reads.
"The legalization of abortion in America meant the Oath was out. But even with abortion legalized physicians could still practice according to their consciences. The American College of OB/GYN, however, threw down the gauntlet in November 2007 with its Ethics Statement 385, which defined any OB/GYN doctor who did not perform or order for abortion as unethical. The American Board of OB/GYN quickly followed with a new requirement that an OB/GYN doctor had to agree with the ethics of the College to pass the OB/GYN boards....
"Peter Singer, Professor of Bioethics at Princeton advocates infanticide when he writes, 'killing a disabled infant is not morally equivalent to killing a person. Very often it is not wrong at all."
There is an impassable gulf between the professional humanism of Singer and the Law of God. Obviously, there is nothing sacred nor nothing immoral when humanists, agnostics, atheists, and ignostics leave God out of the ethical/moral equation.
I am astounded that those who advocate the murder of infants (the commandment is better translated, "You shall not murder,") have the audacity to invoke and vote their paganistic plans under the umbrella of "Ethics". This is not ethics. This is the outworking of a politically motivated agenda by irreligious unethical politicians/physicians who have a theory of ethics but who lack understanding of the value of each life.
Thinking about the issue, might it also be true that the "Ethic" of Singer (and others of similar mind) and the American College of OB/GYN are advocating and practicing a medical variation of "cleansing," not dissimilar to that practiced in Germany under Adolf Hitler in his quest for a superior race?
The American College of OB/GYN has abrogated its historical, sacred duty and bowed to the pressures and objectives of putrified, humanistic, political objectives of social engineering.
Christ has said; "Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he would drown in the depths of the sea." [Matthew 18:6] [See also Mark 9:42 and Luke 17:2 for comparison] .God also says; "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you..." [Jeremiah 1:5].
It's hard to do...but think on these things and if you know of a countercourse of action...take it, say it, do it. e.c.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Health Reform; Never Heard of It.

Adventists are supposed to be at the head of things and not the tail. There's a great debate going on in the nation about health care and everyone has an opinion. Adventists could have a significant and relevant voice in the matter and we could recommend that politicians and health providers visit any Adventist church on any "potluck"day; but we shouldn't.
Why not? I'm afraid we would be sorely embarrassed and called out on our inconsistency; and it would be deserved. After the macaroni and cheese, every thing else with cheese, (and my former favorite foods) the potato salad, the potato chips, and the dessert table, what would we have to say...or show to a world that is sick and dying both spiritually and physically.
To be "fair and balanced" I have to say that Adventists and Adventism are/is well represented by many believers who take seriously the connection between diet and spiritually, and who eat as did Daniel and his friends in Babylon. They know and understand Paul's admonition, "...whether ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God."[I Cor. 10:31]
We should be ashamed of every disease and condition that can be traced directly to poor habits of eating. Seventh-day Adventists as a whole do not live what they know. Some of us are obese, diabetic, fraught with cancers, and every other disease "enjoyed" by the world. We know better but not all do better.
God said to the children of Israel that if they would obey His statutes they would have none of the diseases that He brought on the Egyptians. Well, some of us are not so well and I will leave it to the reader(s) to decide why that may be so.
Conclusion: we, as Adventists, know what to do but, for the sake of appetite, not all are willing to do it. Some have unconverted stomachs. What right do I hve to assume to make such a statement? It is because I take the time to look at the tables we set with food we have the audacity to call "health food." It is not health food and we (speaking editorially and specifically) are not health reformers in the manner God intended us to be.
If you are searching for sources of nutritional guidance, here is a partial list; 1. Dr. Hans Diehl and Darlene Blaney, The Optimal Diet; 2. Newstart Lifestyle Cookbook for Weimar Institute; 3. 30-Day Diabetes Miracle Cookbook; 4. Dr. Neal Nedley, Proof Positive; 5. Neva and Jim Brackett, 7 Secrets Cookbook. Lastly I will point to the original; Counsels on Diet and Food, by Ellen White.
Feed on these things. e.c.