Friday, 31 January 2020

Not the Same, Actually

Marriage Eroding Into A Quagmire

How America’s Woman-Dominant Sexual Dynamic Is Destroying Marriages And Families

That’s the missing element in the push for the so-called equal marriage. By suggesting men and women are essentially the same, we set them up to fail.

Suzanne Venker
The Federalist

Susan Forray is a 44-year-old divorced actuary who wrote in The New York Times about her relationship with a man unlike all the others she dated in the past, in that he believed in traditional gender roles. This gentleman told Forray flat-out one day, “I’m the man. I should be in charge of the money.”

Forray felt a “jolt of anxiety.” Here she was, an actuary—someone who analyzes statistics and uses them to calculate insurance risks and premiums—and the man she’s dating tells her managing money is his job, not hers.
“I found his bluntness surprising but also alluring. He was confident in his desires…I craved a man who sought to take financial responsibility for his family, even if I didn’t need it,” she writes. “The men I’d previously dated thought of themselves as staunch feminists—in hindsight, frustratingly so, at least in the sense that they were too inclined to defer to me (under the guise of respecting me) to ever take charge, either financially or sexually.”
This sexual dynamic Forray describes is not an anomaly—it is the norm. I’ve heard countless stories of strong and successful women who are dating or married to a man who, in an effort to appear liberated, has either curbed his ambitions or simply follows rather than leads. Just the other day I had yet another conversation with a mother whose 20-something daughter is moving in with a man who lacks the direction and ambition she has, and the daughter told her mother she’s worried he will come to resent her.

She’s right to be worried. That will happen.

Daily Meditation

Considering Others

There is a large sign posted next to the first tee of the local golf course. The sign declares the rules that govern play. The first rule is a preview of the specific rules that follow. It reads: “The first rule of golf is consideration of others.”
Consideration for others, in the context of the Christian’s liberty in Christ, is the theme of Paul’s teaching in Romans 14. With the advent of the new covenant, some rules that were important to the Old Testament were done away with. They were fulfilled by the ministry of Jesus and were no longer necessary.
When laws are revised, it is difficult for people to make adjustments. One difficult adjustment for early Jewish converts was to the new situation in which Jesus declared that certain foods that had been prohibited under Old Testament ceremonial law were now clean. Even the apostle Peter struggled with this new state of affairs (see Acts 10:916).
The issue the mature Christian faced was this: How should he relate to a weaker brother whose conscience was bound by rules with which God never intended to bind him? Should the mature Christian forfeit his liberty for the sake of the weaker brother? Should the stronger brother indulge his freedom regardless of the feelings of the weaker brother? Should the scruples of the weaker brother become the law of the church?
Paul’s answer to this situation is based on the principle of loving consideration by both parties.

Coram Deo

Study Romans 14 for scriptural guidelines on relating to weaker members of the body of Christ.

Passages for Further Study

Tearing NZ Families Apart

Smacking Law Has Caused Decline In Discipline – Poll

Media Release 15 January 2020

Family First

A nationwide poll has found that half of New Zealanders believe that the 2007 anti-smacking law has caused a decline in discipline (with a further 16% unsure – 33% said it hadn’t), and that they would continue to smack their child to correct their behaviour if they believed it was reasonable to do so. Almost 40% of mothers of young children say they have smacked despite the law change. Opposition to the law is still significantly higher amongst National and NZ First voters.

The Curia Market Research poll of 1,000 respondents surveyed at the beginning of December also found:

Low income families (63%), those living in rural areas and National & NZ First supporters were far more likely to flout the law

70% said they would not report a parent who they saw smacking their child on the backside or hand (including two out of three Green & Labor voters), while 20% would

Thursday, 30 January 2020

In Memoriam

Christopher Tolkien Was The Unsung Hero Of Middle Earth

The son of J.R.R. Tolkien did far more than just compile and edit his father’s unfinished stories. He helped create the world of Middle Earth.

John Daniel Davidson
The Federalist

Last week, amid churning news cycles about impeachment and Iran and global trade deals, an era quietly ended. Christopher Tolkien, the third and youngest son of “Lord of the Rings” author J.R.R. Tolkien, died at the age of 95.

The younger Tolkien, who spent the last four decades of his life completing his father’s grand artistic vision, was one of the great unsung literary heroes of the last century. For countless readers whose imaginations were molded in part by the legendarium of Middle Earth, his passing severs the last living link to another existential plane.

His obituaries variously describe Tolkien as the editor of his father’s posthumous works, or the guardian of his legacy. But that is not quite right—or not quite enough. Christopher Tolkien was more than an editor or a guardian; he was a kind of co-creator with his father of Middle Earth itself.

It was Christopher Tolkien who, in 1975 at age 50, left his fellowship at Oxford University to sort through dozens of boxes of his late father’s unfinished writings, some dating back more than 60 years and most of which dealt with the creation and history of Middle Earth and its peoples—the entire literary universe in which “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings” take place.

He spent years compiling and editing these fragments and notes, and in 1977, more than two decades after the publication of his father’s acclaimed trilogy, “The Silmarillion” was published. It went on to sell millions of copies in dozens of editions and translations, and served as the foundation for two-dozen subsequent works derived from Tolkien’s archives, culminating with the publication, last August, of “The Fall of Gondolin”—Christopher Tolkien’s final literary contribution to a creative project that now spans more than a century.

From the very beginning, Tolkien had a hand in crafting what would become one of the greatest literary achievements of modern times.

Daily Meditation

Listening to Your Conscience

My conscience is held captive by the Word of God. And to act against conscience is neither right nor safe.”
These words formed a crucial part of Martin Luther’s fateful response to authorities of church and state when he was ordered to recant of his teachings at the Diet of Worms in 1521. He was pleading that his intention was to be neither rebellious nor obstreperous, but to be faithful to Scripture. What Luther was declaring was not so much that he would not recant but that he could not recant.
Luther used the metaphor of the prisoner. He was as a man in chains, incarcerated, with no option of liberty by which he was able to do what the authorities commanded. He was not physically restrained. The irons that gripped him were of a moral sort. It was his conscience that had been captured by the Holy Ghost.
The only option by which he could please men was the option to act against his conscience. To act for men was to act against God. Though the stakes were high, the decision was actually a “no brainer.” Scripture declares that whatever is not of faith is sin (Rom. 14:23).

Coram Deo

Reflect on this statement: “To act for men is to act against God.”

Music To The Ears

There Will Be No Alignment with EU Rules

Chancellor of the Exchequer Leaves No-one In Doubt

Victoria Friedman
Breitbart London

Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid has told businesses to prepare for the UK to diverge from EU regulations, saying “we will not be a ruletaker” after the transition period.

“There will not be alignment, we will not be a ruletaker, we will not be in the single market and we will not be in the customs union — and we will do this by the end of the year,” Mr Javid told the Financial Times in an interview published on Friday. 

Urging companies to “adjust” to the UK setting its own regulations, the chancellor added: “We’re also talking about companies that have known since 2016 that we are leaving the EU.”

The EU has said that the UK must remained aligned to EU regulations in order to secure a trade deal with the bloc at the end of the transition period in December 2020. However, the British government has maintained that it wishes the country to diverge in order to become more globally competitive and open to international trade deals, which might otherwise be hampered by continuing to abide by Brussels’ rules.

Wednesday, 29 January 2020

Tacky Commercialising Of the Monarchy Was Never Going to Work

#Megxit! Ex-Prince Harry Got Woke, Now He’s Broke…

James Delingpole
Breitbart London

How are the mighty fallen!

This time a year ago, Prince Harry had the world at his feet. He was a handsome prince with a beautiful wife and a healthy male heir on the way, plenty of money, a free, five-bedroomed ‘cottage’ in a piece of England’s finest real estate, a dashing war record from two tours in Afghanistan, bags of honorary titles — including Captain General of the Royal Marines — all the cachet of being a senior player in the world’s grandest Royal Family but little of the responsibility (his big brother William is heir to the throne, so the pressure is off there), with plenty of spare time for frequent private jet jaunts round the world to hang out with celebrity chums like Sir Elton John.

Now, he’s a nobody. Or at best, an ex-Someone. Sure he gets to keep his aristocratic courtesy-title the Duke of Sussex, but he no longer retains the rank of royal prince or the honorific ‘His Royal Highness’; he has to pay back the £2.4 million that the UK taxpayer spent doing up his ‘cottage’; he has lost the role of Captain General — and all his other honorary military titles; he’ll no longer be paid to represent the Royal Family at official events; he’s now possibly even less famous than his wife, who wasn’t exactly A-list to begin with being only the ex-supporting-star from a fading TV show in its seventh series…

Where did it all go so wrong for the poor lad?

Daily Meditation

Eliminating Lying

The unusual indictment of Scripture against fallen humanity may be seen in the sad conclusion that “All men are liars” (Ps. 116:11). Lying is a sin endemic to fallen human nature, and one that is not instantly cured by regeneration. It is the character trait that clearly distinguishes us from God. God is a covenant keeper; He speaks no falsehood. We are covenant breakers, spreading lies even in our promises.
It is Satan who is called the “father of lies.” Sadly, he has sired many children. We are all by nature his offspring in this regard. It was the serpent in Eden who uttered the first lie: “You will not surely die … you will be like God” (Gen. 3:45). By this lie the human race was seduced and plunged into corruption.
The judgment of God on the liar is given. Revelation 21:8 declares that all liars shall have their part in the lake of fire. If this means that every one who has ever told a lie will end up in hell, then all of us are bound for perdition.
To tell a lie even once makes a person a liar. Since Scripture affirms that all men are liars, it would seem to suggest that all will perish. But this is not the conclusion Scripture reaches. Our lies are covered by the atonement. But this grace is not a license to lie with impunity. The lie means a serious offense against God and our neighbor. To persist in lying is inconsistent with sanctification, and the person who is characterized by the habit of lying is not Christian.

Coram Deo

Are you a person who is true to his word?

Passages for Further Study

Blown Away By Cursed, Dirty Wind Power

UK Wind Farms Paid Millions Per Day NOT to Run Turbines

Kurt Zindulka
Breitbart London

Last week, millions of pounds in “constraint payments” were paid to wind energy farms to not run their turbines.

Over £12 million was handed out to wind farms in the United Kingdom last week, following a major outage in a powerline that transported energy from Scottish wind farms to England. The handouts will be tacked onto consumers’ energy bills throughout the country. 

The firms were paid between 25 and 80 per cent more than they would have earned were the turbines actually running, reports The Telegraph.

A study conducted in December by the Renewable Energy Foundation (REF) found that the UK handed out a record high £136 million to 86 wind farm owners last year in “constraint payments” when the grid was incapable of handling the energy flow.

Dr John Constable, the director of the REF, condemned the spate of wind farm development in Scotland saying: 
“The Scottish Government has permitted excessive and environmentally damaging growth in wind power north of the border which has put the electricity system under great strain and burdened English and Welsh consumers not only with constraint payments but also with the additional expense of a £1 billion interconnector that is itself proving unreliable. The environment and the consumer have been betrayed over and over again.”

Tuesday, 28 January 2020

Going Direct

100,000 People Seeking Tickets to Trump’s ‘Keep America Great’ Rally in NJ

Katherine Rodriguez
Breitbart News

More than 100,000 people are seeking tickets to President Donald Trump’s “Keep America Great” rally in Wildwood, New Jersey, on January 28.  Democrat-turned-Republican Rep. Jeff Van Drew (R-NJ) announced that 100,000 people are looking for tickets to the rally, which is being held at the Wildwoods Convention Center, a 7,500-seat venue, reported.

“It’s exciting. And I’m proud to say for this event — of all the events President Trump has done — we’ve had the most ticket requests,” Van Drew told Fox News on Sunday.  The last time a president visited Wildwood was in 1891 when Benjamin Harrison traveled to the area.

Trump and Van Drew are slated to appear together at the rally at 7 p.m. on January 28. Trump’s re-election campaign announced this month he was coming to Cape May County to hold a rally in support of Van Drew.

Van Drew was one of two Democrats who voted against Trump’s impeachment and switched parties over the issue.  “We’re proud to have him,” Van Drew told “It shows he cares about the big towns and big places, and he also cares about the little places.”

Tickets for the Wildwood rally were made available online for free, and event organizers are already expecting there will be overflow crowds.

Daily Meditation

Defining Our Relationship

At the heart of Christianity is the doctrine of the mystical union of the believer with Christ. The New Testament does not only call us to believe in Christ, but to believe into Christ. Faith links us directly into Christ. We become in Him and He in us. This mysterious union is carried over into the relationship between Christ and the church. The church is His bride, whom He has brought into a real, profound, and powerful union.
We normally assume that the image of the church as the bride of Christ is a metaphor borrowed from the institution of human marriage. In this case, the earthly serves as the model for the heavenly. Perhaps that is the intent of Scripture. I am not sure. It may well be the other way around. It may be that the earthly estate of marriage is based on the heavenly model of the mystical union of Christ and His bride. Marriage is the reflection of the heavenly reality, not the basis for a heavenly image.
The perfect unity of persons existed in eternity in the nature of the Trinity itself. Though the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are not “one flesh,” they are one being in perfect eternal harmony. In the Godhead, there is no possibility of divorce. It is a union that cannot and will not be broken. It is the eternal pattern of relationship that defines our human relationship. We share with God not only an analogy of being, but also an analogy of relationship. It is found in the mystery of marriage.

Coram Deo

Reflect on the mysterious union of Christ and the church as illustrated by the marriage relationship.

Passages for Further Study

A Select Few

At Last--An Superb Actor Who Thinks

OK.  Confessions first.  In our household the adults are all devoted to most UK detective and crime movies. As everyone knows who follows series that can last for years, if not decades, the individual personalities can become part of the social discourse of the family.  

That's the general acknowledgement.  Then comes the specific matter of the various Morse series.  We fans and and have been so for years.  The actors have grown older with us, as it were.  They are part of the fabric of our lives.  And now this lightning bolt.

‘Will This Kill My Career?’ Actor Laurence Fox Comes Out as Pro-Trump!

James Delingpole
Breitbart London

WATCH: ‘Will This Kill My Career?’ Actor Laurence Fox Comes Out as Pro-Trump!

Meet your new favourite actor Laurence Fox, currently trending on Twitter because of his shocking appearance on BBC’s Question Time last night.  It was shocking because instead of spouting the usual leftist pabulum, Fox boldly revealed himself as an anti-woke crusader.

On the hypocrisy of actors who rack up air miles:

“Yeah the carbon footprint’s huge. But we make up for it by preaching to everyone how they should change their lives.”

On Meghan and Harry wanting to keep the perks of royalty while having independent lives:

“I do think there’s a little bit of having cake and eating it, which I don’t enjoy.”

On the racism industry:

“One of the dangerous things about throwing racism around in this country which we’re doing a lot at the moment is that people become so conscious of it that things like the Manchester grooming scandal get ignored. We… should not call someone racist just when they don’t agree with you.”

Monday, 27 January 2020

Self-Delusion On A Grand Scale

The Cult Of Pelosi

A Deadly Thing For Democrats’ Future

The cult of Pelosi isn't just a 'hot take' or a 'be smart,' it's a mindset through which Washington's media elites interpret the world. It's false, and the harsh light of reality easily shows as much.

Christopher Bedford
The Federalist

There are many cults in Washington, D.C. The Founding Church of Scientology sits between Dupont and Logan Circles. The earth-worshiping Defenders of Wildlife are just a few blocks south, their entrance guarded by imposing bronze grey wolves. One block north, the Human Rights Campaign dispatches starry-eyed adherents with clipboards to recruit followers, and to the east lie the child-harvesters. Two blocks away, the remnants of the Church of Her keep Hillary’s flame burning; and crowning them all: the mighty cult of SoulCycle.

But today, the city has another faith working reporters into a fervor, and her name is Nancy Pelosi.

Reporters have called her “basically invincible,” a “political grandmaster,” an “icon of female power,” a “rockstar” and, time and time again, “a fashion icon.” Reporters have venerated “her clothes, her hand gestures, her facial expression” and placed a halo ’round her head. Activists projected her image on San Francisco’s city hall and a D.C. restaurant dedicated a Christmas tree in her honor.

“House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is doing to President Donald Trump what no one else has in the nearly three years since he took office: She’s making him squirm.” Business Insider pronounced two days after Christmas. “House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has managed to accomplish what no one else has even tried in the past three years: sticking it right back to Trump,” RawStory echoed the same day in an article that includes “squirm” in its headline.

Daily Meditation

Growing into Conformity

The modern distinction between the “carnal Christian” and the “Spirit-filled Christian” is a dangerous one. If a carnal Christian is described as one whose fallen nature has not yet been changed by grace, it is a contradiction in terms. If a person is carnal in the sense that the Holy Spirit resides in him without affecting his constituent nature in any way, then he is simply not a Christian. To view regeneration as not effecting any real change in the person is a serious distortion of regeneration. Here the Holy Spirit indwells but does nothing to effect change in the person.
If a Spirit-filled Christian is defined as one in whom the flesh is absent entirely, then the only Spirit-filled Christians are those now in heaven. Every Christian is to some degree carnal in this world, insofar as the remnants of the flesh are still there provoking warfare. In this sense, the Apostle Paul, after his conversion, was a carnal Christian. Every Christian is also spiritual in that the Holy Spirit indwells him and works in him, through him, and on him.
The biblical view involves the indwelling of a divine person within a human person who has been truly regenerated by the power of the divine person. The human person has changed. His old nature is dying, and by cooperation with the grace of the Holy Spirit, the new man is growing into conformity to Christ.

Coram Deo

Thank God for the ministry of the Holy Spirit working in, through, and on you.

Passages for Further Study

Rolling Back Environmentalist Taxes in the UK

Eco Loons Spit Green Bile

Boris Saves Budget Airline Flybe

James Delingpole
Breitbart London

Who represents real Britain?

a) Solitary Green MP Caroline Lucas; Guardian readers; other tofu-munching eco-freaks; anyone else who lives in Brighton or Totnes; Greenpeace; Fiends of the Earth; Greta Thunberg; Extinction Rebellion.

b) Normal people who like driving in their cars, taking regular holidays, being able to afford to keep their houses warm when it’s cold, and who are bored rigid with being lectured by hectoring little nobodies with crappy pretend science degrees from the University of East Anglia about how the planet’s dying and it’s all their fault and something must be done by yesterday or we’re all doomed.

Boris Johnson is no fool and he seems to have worked out using his Oxford Classics mega-brain that the correct answer is b). At least this is what we can infer from his most significant environmental decision since his landslide general election victory — bailing out the stricken airline company Flybe.

Flybe is the kind of cheap and cheerful budget airline that normal British people use for their holidays. That’s why it is so important that it should not be allowed to die, and why Boris Johnson has just done the right thing by saving the cash-strapped airline with a government rescue package.

Saturday, 25 January 2020

Utopian Greenism Is Destroying the Planet

Don’t Blame Climate Change For Raging Wildfires

Blame Bad Management

Despite common sense, the historic record, and scientific evidence, leftist environmentalists would fight and protest for a utopia we will never see, all while the world burns.

Krystina Skurk
The Federalist

California and Australia share a common enemy: overzealous environmental regulation. In both places, the unintended consequences of a radical environmentalist agenda has been massive wildfires.

California suffered from two horrible fire seasons in the last three years, one of which burned down an entire town. Australia has been battling fires for months. More than 135 fires are still burning currently. So far, the fires have scorched 12 million acres, killed 25 people, caused 240,000 Australians to evacuate their homes, burned alive an estimated half a billion animals, and caused $3.4 billion worth of damage.

The big question isn’t necessarily how these wildfires started. In both cases, most of the fires were likely man-made, whether through downed electrical lines in California or arsonists in Australia. The real question, however, is what factors have contributed to making these fires into “mega catastrophes,” or fires that cause over a billion dollars of damage?

Many on the left will name climate change as the bogeyman. For example, a recent opinion article in The New York Times reads, “Australia Is Committing Climate Suicide.” Yet more evidence points to failed environmental policies.

This isn’t to say weather or climate doesn’t create dangerous fire conditions. Droughts create drier conditions, and hot air worsens wildfires, but there is even contention over the supposition that Australia is hotter and drier now than in the past. One researcher argues that, with a few exceptions, most of Australia has become wetter since 1910.

Daily Meditation

Becoming a New Creation

As Christians, we are new creations. Our hearts of stone have been turned into hearts of flesh. In this metaphor, flesh is used as a positive figure, not a pejorative one. Where once my heart was cold and recalcitrant, dead and inert to the things of God, now it throbs and pulsates with spiritual life. Once I was biologically alive but spiritually dead. Now I am biologically alive and spiritually alive as well. I am a new person.
There is radical discontinuity between my new self and my old self. This radical discontinuity, however, is not total discontinuity. A link between the old man and the new man remains. The old man has been dealt a mortal blow. His total destruction is certain, but he is not yet dead.
The conflict of the Christian life is a struggle with sin. Sin no longer has dominion over us if we are in Christ, yet sin is still in us. Regeneration liberates us from the bondage of original sin, but our corrupt nature is not totally annihilated this side of heaven.
Paul speaks of the warfare that goes on between the flesh and the spirit. “For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish” (Gal. 5:17).

Coram Deo

Thank God for the new heart of flesh He has implanted in your spiritual being.

Passages for Further Study