Amassing upon the border of Canaan, swords in hand and Law upon two graven tablets of stone, Jehovah’s Israel prepared for war. The promise had been given: the sins of Canaan, her idolatry, her child-sacrifice, her filth and lewdness and injustice had filled earth to the brim, spilling over the mountains into heaven; and now the land itself would vomit Canaan up — paganism giving place to true religion, evil to righteousness, and lies to truth. The cry of trumpets preceding the menacing rumble of footsteps, as lightning and thunder coupled, Israel marched forth in Holy hegemony. (more…)
3. March 2013
15. February 2013
Having recently been disgusted by a series of “Christian” articles — shallow and kind-faced garbage, mostly — and thoroughly annoyed by the lack of substance in mainstream American Christianity, I’ve decided to take a slight turn, if only for an article.
Below you will find no kind words; below you’ll find no happy thoughts or anecdotes about how your pet reminds you of the love of Jesus — or about how to love your neighbors by banning guns, or encouragement for female pastors. What I want to do is something entirely different — allow the Bible to speak for itself; and so I’ve arranged a series of passages in a particular order, designed to prove, not with any sort of sophistry or art, but with the plain speech of overwhelming fact, that the evidence of salvation is our works. This isn’t to say that a man must commit works in order to be saved, but that the indwelling of the Holy Spirit produces a sanctifying effect; that man will change if he is saved; that we must be able to know the signature of salvation by a particular effect, and that the effect by which we know is our works. (more…)
24. January 2013
Two thousand years of existence, two thousand years of heresies and reforms, abuses and revivals have bred a Christianity diverse and confusing, alive — and yet smothered by itself. Whatever passes for Christendom these days, we may be certain that the overwhelming majority misunderstand Christ in some way or another, misquote Him; crusades marching under banners which infuriate angels and drive men of orthodoxy to weeping, choirs belching forth obscenities which cause dead Fathers’ bones to creak and wail within their lost and forgotten graves. When a thousand mutually exclusive claims coexist, and a thousand sects profess them fanatically, we must accept that confusion on particular points is nearly universal. This is the curse of age. In the present state of affairs, it cannot be avoided. (more…)
3. January 2013
One of the best things about being a Christian is that when all the stupidity, all the evils, all the ignorance of the world become so overwhelming, that you don’t feel like you can take it, it’s then you feel something like a tap on a shoulder, and something like a voice behind you, asking “passing through?”
If I may answer briefly, Sir, I am. And thank you for that. Goodbye anger, goodbye sorrow; you were mine for a bit, a pair of ugly lovers. But I think I’ll be leaving you where you belong.
27. December 2012
When in the course of discussion, seemingly irreconcilable differences become manifest concerning the existence and preference of beauty, such differences oftentimes appear indicative of beauty’s subjective nature — that beauty is in the eye of the beholder; that because men visibly differ in preference, nature acknowledges no formula for the definition of “attractive.” But yet I believe the opposite can be proven: that a standard not only exists, but that the pursuit of beauty and fashion only maintain legitimacy within certain boundaries; and that if the pursuit of beauty transgresses its limitations, it becomes a perversion. It is the object of this essay to prove this theory, perhaps not defining the particulars of beauty — not to say which shades or shapes are beautiful –, but rather to present a general defense of beauty’s objective existence. (more…)
6. December 2012
Years have passed since I first heard those words, long ago recorded in the darkness of Mediterranean anarchy: “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”
Not simply years, but generations of rape and murder, of mobs and violence, of tyranny and oppression, of heresy and revenge had stagnated God’s Israel into a cesspool of evils, and yet, this? Notice that it never said every man did what was wrong in his own eyes. No, had it said that, humanity would have been in a far less precarious position. But man in the depths of depravity didn’t simply disregard what was right: by denoting that man did what was right in his own eyes, man had the effect of evil, but without the guilt, without the shame, without the impending sense of divine judgment. Derailed from the tracks of reason and Law, humanity’s train careened into pathways unstable and fit him for destruction, all the while gliding softly off the edge of a spiritual cliff. (more…)
24. November 2012
Perhaps some can remember far before they reached adulthood, and recall those days of infancy, and talk of how they accepted Christ at a young age. My mother speaks of my early conversion, but if I did in fact make any sort of conscious decision, it matters little. Years of adulthood spent in the Devil’s service, whether consciously or practically, serve great indication that the Spirit has no sway over a man — years; neither minutes nor days, but years. They were the most miserable years of my life. (more…)
13. November 2012
When I was about the age of five, I distinctly remember attending a wedding. The details of the actual ceremony, by this point, are almost entirely lost: I know whose wedding it was, and that they had either rented or borrowed nice table cloths. The strange part about the whole circumstance is that I remember the table cloths because I was beneath them with a young girl, and we were hiding beneath them because we were taking our clothes off. (more…)
30. October 2012
I’ve heard many arguments supporting or opposing the legalization of marijuana and drugs in general, most of them practical in nature, but almost entirely unsatisfactory. It seems more prudent, to this writer, that if we’re to have a meaningful policy concerning man — the mind of man, particularly –, we must first begin neither with opinion nor conjecture, but with truths about his very nature. (more…)
30. September 2012
To my right lies a book written by hymn writer and philosopher Isaac Watts, a textbook once used at Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, and Yale for generations, to train men in the art of reason. It opens thusly:
The pursuit and acquisition of truth is of infinite concernment to mankind. Hereby we become acquainted with the name of things both in Heaven and earth, and their various relations to each other. It is by this means we discover our duty to God and our fellow-creatures; by this we arrive at the knowledge of natural religion, and learn to confirm our faith in divine revelation, as well as to understand what is revealed. Our wisdom, prudence, and piety, our present conduct and our future hope, are all influenced by the use of our rational powers in the search after truth. (more…)
28. September 2012
While talking to my father only a short while ago, we stumbled upon a controversial question of great importance: that being whether or not it’s egomaniacal for God to demand that others worship Him. It seemed strange, at first, that He would embody a characteristic usually recognized as abusive, bizarre, and oftentimes difficult to explain to those outside the faith. But I believe these difficulties can be resolved, first, upon further inspection of man’s fall, and second, upon careful examination of what it means to be finite. (more…)
31. August 2012
Plutarch once noted the great displeasure of Emperor Augustus, upon the latter’s witnessing some wealthy foreign women in Rome. Carrying puppies and baby monkeys, caressing the animals as they would have their own children, the women inspired Augustus to protest, and with snideness fit for an emperor, he spoke: what kind of people, he asked, would waste motherly affections upon animals? (more…)
19. August 2012
Can the state ever really make men good?
In recent months, this author has been accused of blasphemy by one of his intellectual friends, allegedly over the above political question. But though the question is simple, and the accusation upon first glance appears to be an isolated case, the charge upon further inspection assails far many more than myself, and comprises a collision between two very different, but often improperly defined, doctrines: those of the Christian libertarian and the Biblical conservative. It is this theological and political collision which I seek to explain, should the reader bear with me. (more…)
25. June 2012
In the present day and age, no political passion surpasses that exchanged between sexual liberals and sexual conservatives. Even within the buildings known as Christian churches, division permeates an already splintered people into smaller shards, the whispers growing into shouts, indignant people preaching sermons which do little to convince, and much more to infuriate. And when both sides reach that fevered pitch, what are we to decide? Aren’t we to call every sinner to Christ? What authority do Christian standards have beyond the church? And if God judges the nations, what kind of law does He call us to support? (more…)
7. June 2012
Editor’s note: this article appeared on the Christian Post on June 07, 2012
One of the greatest legends of Roman civilization concerns a general named Marcus Regulus. This man, having gone to war against a barbaric enemy, Carthage, and having been captured with little to no hope of escape, was given the prospect of liberty. His captors offered him a bargain few men could refuse — a chance to return to the safety and comfort of a thankful Rome — in exchange for a simple favor: the negotiation of an exchange of prisoners. If successful, Carthage offered him return to Rome; if met with failure, under oath before his gods, Regulus swore to return to his captors. (more…)
26. April 2012
If one has spent any serious amount of time talking about politics with his neighbors, he’s sure to have heard someone say that “we all want the same things.”
At first the saying seems benign, a somewhat understanding and peaceful approach to political conversation, a suggestion that despite disagreement, neither party is evil, nor any countryman an enemy. But in reality, behind the mask of camaraderie and tolerance, and perhaps even deeper than the intentions of its professors, lies an ideology extremely harmful to society at large. For evils don’t often manifest themselves in total opposition to any universally positive quality. Instead, persuading with a charming tone and appealing oftentimes to the same qualities which noble men hold dear, they simply rearrange the manner in which those qualities take precedence over one another. (more…)
25. March 2012
Editor’s note: this article also appeared on The Christian Post on March 21, 2012
The other day, a young man I know through work, Eddie, approached me with tragic news. His good friend’s sister, who had recently given birth, had (due to what appears to be medical errors on behalf of the hospital) given birth to a practical stillborn. She was heartbroken, and though Eddie knew I was unacquainted with her or her family, he couldn’t help but share his sorrow. (more…)
13. March 2012
There are certain times in a man’s life when his fingers tremble to type a thought, when the weight of a declaration lies so heavily upon his heart, that he can only with great difficulty and precaution bring himself to write it. In this particular case, the writer treads carefully knowing that two paths lie before him, both, in a sense, approved in specific circumstances by God Himself, but human reason and spiritual enlightenment determining which of the two is viable. I speak, in this case, of the decision of whether to support Israel militarily or not. (more…)
22. February 2012
The necessity of Biblical Law being established in a previous article, it is now the author’s intention to examine how a Biblical legal stance would apply to a non-Jewish nation. For there are many confusing aspects of Biblical Law, which, if not addressed, could very well establish an unGodly tyranny instead of liberty, and so it is up to the astute observer to note the differences between wise and foolish applications. I humbly submit the following points as a rough sketch of a Biblical legal system, and request the input of all God fearing and learned elders. (more…)
28. December 2011
America, though often derided and hated — perhaps not explicitly, but silently — by the left, oftentimes experiences the opposite problem from its most ardent admirers, the conservatives. In its admiration, perhaps condensed most perfectly into what is known as the American Dream, men elevate a nation into idolization because the nation elevates men. One does not have to look far to see that in American literature, in the movies, in even the world of politics, Americans believe on a sincere level that in the United States, opportunity can be had by all who truly seek it, and that for this reason it is worthy of glorification. (more…)
12. November 2011
In modern American society, though men and women oftentimes pretend to support equal rights for both genders, they in actuality support systems which favor one sex over the other. (more…)
2. April 2011
Of the many controversial stances I have taken, few have resulted in more opposition than my declaration that God’s Law is eternally applicable to human society. As such, in the interest of sparing time, I’ve created this primer to explain the necessity of a Biblical foundation for law, and to address the most common objections against one.
Before addressing these objections, it must be known that the greatest reason for promoting Biblical principles within a Christian society is that God has established these principles in the creation of Israel. As such, it is reasonable to conclude that since He is God, He is righteous, and Israel is His, He would not have dispensed a poorly crafted or quasi-moral legal system. Rather, it is only sensible to accept that these are the highest legal and moral principles ever drafted, and that we can neither improve nor reject them if we are to live righteously and function optimally. (more…)
15. March 2011
Most people in the West agree that a human should not be subject to cruel and unusual punishment, as maintained by our eighth amendment and supported by an overwhelming number of Americans. But is it possible that the process of defining “cruel and unusual” has done Americans more harm than good? To understand whether or not this is the case, it is imperative to consider the concept of war, the purpose of law, and then eventually examine the unalienable rights which all human beings possess.
John Locke once described man’s natural rights as being the right to work for his food, to enjoy the products of his labor, and to live within the positive laws of Scripture (Second Treatise, sects 135 and 136). But since man cannot survive without the right to property and to secure the benefits of his labor, an assault on these rights is an assault on survival, an act Locke recognized as a declaration of war. He wrote of the matter, (more…)
14. February 2011
People oftentimes make the case that the God of the Bible, Yahweh, doesn’t act according to His own moral principles. And I suppose that from an atheist’s perspective, in which Yahweh is actually a figment of the Jewish imagination, they would be correct: in two specific circumstances, one concerning the genocide of the Canaanites, and the other a pardoning of an adultress, He does seem to contradict His laws. But ironically, this very argument against the Jewish God’s lawful nature further proves His existence. (more…)
30. January 2011
I can still vividly remember walking through run-down Neapolitan suburbs (or, the closest they could get to them, anyway) as a seventeen-year old, firmly within the grasp of an LSD trip. As I walked through the tall, unkempt grass and weeds, they brushed against my knees as though greeting me with a handshake. The summer sun was looking down upon me, and the rays felt as though they were shining into my body, as though I was illuminated, and radiating life back into the universe. Though I usually noticed the garbage on the messy Italian streets, that day it seemed less prominent, if not unnoticeable, and nature’s technicolor vibrance jumped from objects which would have been previously considered not only ordinary, but drab. I was, at least I felt, as though totally connected with reality, as though something that I had lost along the way had suddenly been found, and I was home. (more…)
4. January 2011
Must an increase in empathy signal a decrease in law?
Let us consider, for a moment, that someone has wronged you by stealing your car. When the person is caught by police, you have the option to press charges, but then discover that your neighbor–whose wife is dying from cancer, after they both lost their jobs–stole your car out of desperation to rush to meet her in the hospital, since he thought she was about to die. Begging your forgiveness with tears in his eyes, the man sinks to his knees in court, clasps his hands together, and looks at you directly. At this moment, moved with compassion, in an act of mercy you allow the man to walk free.
Compassion, then, is our friend. A placing of ourselves in the shoes of others, imagining their hardship and deciding–in some particular instance, to side with them, to recognize that had you been in their position, you would have been desperate as well. And this empathy, in many cases, is noble. (more…)
1. January 2011
It’s not uncommon, these days, to see misinformed Christians parading around in favor of pacifism, as though Christianity demands that Christians can’t defend their families, as though we as a society must abandon moral stances, capital punishment, self-defense, and our right to bear arms. Going even further, some ignorant Christians even seek establishment of hate speech legislation, believing that dangerous ideologies shouldn’t be morally challenged or honestly discussed in public. As a Christian, few beliefs irk me more than these.
Fortunately, if we take a close look at Jesus’ teachings, quite the opposite can be proven about His commandments. For instance, one of the most widely-bungled teachings of Christ concerns the concept of forgiveness and non-retaliation, as most clearly stated in Matthew 5:38-42: (more…)
19. December 2010
As a Christian who enjoys explaining the historicity and scientific legitimacy of Christianity, sometimes Christians ask me: at which point do we not need factual evidence to believe the story of Jesus Christ? How much science and history can ever convince us that Jesus the Jewish Messiah created the world, is God, and saves us from our sin, and that we’re going to heaven? My answer is none. There’s simply no way that you can solidly prove any of those statements with purely physical fact. (more…)
25. September 2010
I’ve got some confessing to do. I’ve woken up this morning with a broken heart, and I can’t shake it because I’m not supposed to.
I am a selfish, lazy man. I know the world is a big place, and that technological advances in communication make us aware of all kinds of problems local and global, and I know that I can’t fix everything, and I know that because of this, some form of emotional callousness should be expected and allowable. I can’t exactly afford an emotional breakdown every time an earthquake happens in Haiti (sounds bad, I know, but Haiti is still a disaster after all the money we sent), and I can’t go wearing a green ribbon every time some Iranian gets bulldozed by their government. There’s just too much going on, too much to do, people are too far away, and the world’s got too much to complain about. (more…)
19. September 2010
It’s no secret that most of the secular public enjoys labeling Christians (serious Christians, anyway) as irrational, backward, and dangerous. Ever since the Enlightenment, humanity has increasingly become its own god, replacing the West’s foundational religion, Christianity, with reason. Supposedly, this transfer of sanctity is supposed to beget a golden age of unprecedented civility and creativity, unhindered by the archaic bondage of religion, progressing our species into a liberated utopia in which every man would be his own king. But secular rationalists–meaning, those who rely on mankind’s rationality as the sole source of morality and social advancement–are not being fair: under their own standards of humanist evolution, even the process of secular rationality fails to achieve its own goals. (more…)