Well there you go…

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Due to pernicious comment spam I’ve turned off my comments for a while. But, I’m happy to post the occasional comment if it bears on a topic. I asked if one of my liberal leaning friends could explain to me the logic of Democrat “leaders” calling for a quick return of our troops.

From Zippy the Fish:

I think I’d qualify as one of your liberal leaning friends, but I have NEVER been eager to rush the troops home from Iraq. As ill-considered as I believe the Iraq war to have been, I believe it would be worse, immoral even, to leave without finishing the job. If we consider a situation bad enough to warrant our military involvement, we had better realize that we are morally obligated to stay with it until things are better than we found them. In short, if we’re going to ‘blow s*** up’, we’d better be prepared to rebuild it better than it was. Otherwise, all our lofty talk is just hot air, a vast glowing sign of our hypocrisy. And whoever says different can kiss my ass. 🙂

Indeed. He may come from Pennsylvania Dutch stock… but he’s obviously a little feisty. Curiously, he and I agree on most every issue… it’s only the particular people we disagree on. And the answer seems to indicate that the Democrats not only won’t be influencing Bush’s decision making, they are likely going to go far in alienating their own constituents. And that’s a bad thing. Because by exhausting their opposition in such partisan ways they will have no stock to use their influence on topics that count. The people who put their hope in their leadership will simply have to wait yet longer.

It is simply not good tactics to meet a stronger, more focused, better armed enemy head to head on a flat plain. The Democrats in their uproar seem to be baited at every opportunity and cannot see any strategy which would better focus the choice of battles. Boxer seems like Boudica fighting the Romans at the Midlands while Kennedy is leading a political Pickett’s Charge. The country will be worse for their misguided rhetorical waste.

Rice/Lieberman in ’08!

Abba Andrew

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Some day around 1996 Wheaton had a chapel service which sticks in my mind. I am not one to hero worship and don’t find the cult of celebrity appealing whatsoever. My tendency is to critique leaders not bow before them.

However, on that day, for whatever reason, as I sat listening to the speaker about fifteen rows from the stage, I got the strongest sense in the depths of my soul that before me was a man whose shoes I was unworthy to untie.

He was discussing his work in Muslim countries at that point. Christianity Today has an interview with Brother Andrew discussing the same ministry.

Recently I was going again to see the Hamas in Gaza, and one of our leaders said, “Well, Andrew, are you now going to tell them that they have to believe in the Trinity?” I said, “The only thing I can say to you is, you’ll never evangelize Muslims because we’re not going there to force a doctrinal point down their throat. We’re going there to exhibit the love and compassion of Jesus—put our arms around people that are lost, totally lost, living in darkness. We’re going to bring a little light and then encourage the church that is still there to be the light—to be the church and function as such.” We should have that boldness to go to them and say, “What you seek”—I don’t say what you miss, but that’s what I think—”what you seek, I have.”

How can they ever love my Savior if they cannot first love me?

As Ignatius might say, this is a man and a Christian. Even reading his words brings back the resonance of that day years ago, for he is still a man whose shoes I am unworthy to untie, and can only pray to be even a small measure of the same kind of Christian.

It is not necessarily his work… it is his obedience filled with confident faith. That is something worthy to honor and emulate.


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Time magazine has a cover story noting the twenty five most influential evangelicals in the nation.

All in all a very fair article. My quibbles have to do with some of the people who I wish weren’t quite as influential. The coverage is quite good.

I especially approve that they chose Mark Noll. Yes, he’s brilliant and prolific, willing to speak on the hard issues while continuing very solid academic pursuits. These are all well and good. I like him because he is a very, very good teacher. Not often are the brilliant academics also profoundly good pedagogues. Mark Noll is both. He may not have started my love for Church History (that honor goes to J. Julius Scott), but he certainly helped stir the fire.

Getting the worm, or the seed as it were

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The dark sky turns lighter as dawn approaches. Among the early birds are a screeching jay, doing an impressive impersonation of a hawk, three gallantly plumed mountain quail, and a flock of bouncing juncos.

I figure there’s a chipmunk there somewhere, they are always about when the crowd begins to gather.

And from the look of things it was a busy night and morning beneath the balcony, about four different kinds of tracks… including coyote and quail.

Just Curious

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Maybe one of my liberal leaning friends can answer this…

Why is it that those who would have been so very content with the US military to stay in the middle east indefinitely to contain Saddam Hussein now are so eager to bring the military home they can’t hardly stand the emotion of their cause?

We’ve been in the region since 1990. Then again, when has been the removal of the US military been the only sign of accomplishment? Does Kennedy question still whether we won WWII or Korea? US soldiers haven’t left those battlegrounds for fifty or sixty years. I think Iraq is way down on the list of places US soldiers need to come home from if this is what counts.

Not that I think the US should stay… it’s just that I’m wondering when this became a marker for success. Or is it the last little bit of face saving. “I said bring the troops home!” and so whenever they do come home it’ll be some manner of perceived victory by the partisans?

Oh… a sidenote. Had Lieberman been nominated as the Democratic contender for President, he would have won. No doubt in my mind. So, if the goal is winning elections, methinks Dean is not the way to go but rather Lieberman who seems to be the model of philosophical opposition without partisanship. He and Feinstein need to take over the party.

Worrisome news from Iraq

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Iraqi Voting Disrupts News Reports of Bombings

The Symbol of the Holy Spirit

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The Pope spends some time today shooing doves out of his apartment.

A wag might note the Pope is once again expelling the Holy Spirit in order to maintain the comfort of the hierarchy… but that would be clearly going too far.

Iraqis are getting it

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For those who feel they are defending Iraq by attacking the voting, here’s what Iraqis think of those who would protest against growing democracy.

Why are these people who are not even from Iraq protesting against these elections?
David Kahrmann, Iraq Election Team

Kennedy? Kerry? Any of the so-called Progressive Left? Are you listening?

Good News

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Word has spread like wildfire of the Christian underground that helps fugitives to reach South Korea. People who lived in silent fear now dare to speak about escape. The regime has almost given up trying to stop them going, although it can savagely punish those caught and sent back.

“Everybody knows there is a way out,” said a woman, who for obvious reasons cannot be identified but who spoke in front of several witnesses.

“They know there is a Christian network to put them in contact with the underground, to break into embassies in Beijing or to get into Vietnam. They know, but you have to pay a lot of money to middlemen who have the Christian contacts.”

Her knowledge was remarkable. North Korean newspapers are stifled by state control. Televisions receive only one channel which is devoted to the Dear Leader’s deeds. Radios are fixed to a single frequency. For most citizens the internet is just a word.

Yet North Koreans confirmed that they knew that escapers to China should look for buildings displaying a Christian cross and should ask among Korean speakers for people who knew the word of Jesus.

Sounds like Christianity really has Good News for those in North Korea. This is a fine thing to be known for… much better than the spongebob silliness.

While at Fuller, which has a goodly number of Koreans… I came to realize that as a group they tended to be the most passionate Christians at the school. The next century, when the great majority of Christian missionaries do not have white skin, will be most interesting for Christianity. Koreans, Chinese, or Nigerians might actually make Christian inroads into such countries as France.


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The new face of Democracy, from Reuters:
The new face of Democracy, voting in Iraq