Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things."

Friday, February 21, 2003

"Who would Jesus bomb?"

Aside from (as one member of my congregation commented) the urge to run out and secure the licensing rights to the WWJB T-shirt and coffee cup franchise...

Someone was kind enough to email me with that question in response to my other blog, Antiwar Celebrity Boycott. After a moment to quell a violent impulse (we pro-war types are nothing if not impulsively violent, after all), I calmly replied. I told the individual to read Revelation 19 for a view to the forceful side of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. When it comes down to the end, He uses force as the only recourse for the final rescue of righteous Israel. There are other examples in Scripture, but that one leaves so little doubt that it can stand alone. I would defend innocent civilians from torture and death at the hands of a ruthless dictator. I would use military force to remove his clear threat to our own United States. So would Jesus. Let the rest of the peace loving world rage. Let them slander our president, a good man. Let them wallow in their shame, dupes of the enemy and very shady individuals and organizations.

It has been more than a generation, almost two generations since the shame of the Vietnam war protesters. Many good men in uniform died needlessly because of them, and many Christians in Vietnam suffered unspeakable persecution on account of the fall of South Vietnam. Defending the helpless and even using force to do so is an awesome responsibility. Thank God we have a president who understands it in the Scriptural context.

Wednesday, February 19, 2003

Some of you have expressed an interest in my news links. Every morning I do my "briefing" by looking at the following:

realclearpolitics

Powerline Blog

Washington Times

If there's an article that catches my eye, I read it. Also, I do read a few of the comics that I find online, including Dilbert, Shoe, Herman, Monty, Drabble, Pluggers, and Foxtrot.
The next overt phase of the War Against Terror will most likely begin in the coming weeks - by the first or second week of March by a semi-educated guess of my own. I am grateful to have many from our own church serving in various capacities around the world, and it appears a couple more to active duty this week. Please pray for all of our members in uniform as they serve our God and country.

It is a distinct satisfaction for me to see so many for our little congregation choose to serve, and even more so knowing that many do so in a sacrificial manner.

I cannot anticipate with perfect confidence how our efforts will turn out in Iraq and on other necessary fields. I expect the very best from our military, and the very worst from certain of our media and the disaffected left. Eight months from now, the Lord willing, we will live in a much safer world, at least for the time being. I hope also we will live in a world where the enemies of freedom stand in shame, especially those who now cry for peace. The opposition does our country a disservice by their vocal condemnation of our president and his noble aims. I will not forget their dishonor as long as they cling to it, and I hope you all will join with me in making them accountable for their perfidy.

We live in treacherous times.

Monday, February 17, 2003

The poems below were found at bartleby.com, and originally collected in an anthology of poetry from the Great War by George Herbert Clarke, ed. (1873–1953). A Treasury of War Poetry. 1917. Its simple dedication reads: "To all those who fight for freedom."
Three Hills, by Everard Owen

THERE is a hill in England,
Green fields and a school I know,
Where the balls fly fast in summer,
And the whispering elm-trees grow,
A little hill, a dear hill, 5
And the playing fields below.

There is a hill in Flanders,
Heaped with a thousand slain,
Where the shells fly night and noontide
And the ghosts that died in vain,— 10
A little hill, a hard hill
To the souls that died in pain.

There is a hill in Jewry,
Three crosses pierce the sky,
On the midmost He is dying 15
To save all those who die,—
A little hill, a kind hill
To souls in jeopardy.

From "Liberty Enlightening the World" by Henry Van Dyke:

O dearest country of my heart, home of the high desire,
Make clean thy soul for sacrifice on Freedom’s altar-fire:
For thou must suffer, thou must fight, until the warlords cease,
And all the peoples lift their heads in liberty and peace.

England and America, by Florence T. Holt

MOTHER and child! Though the dividing sea
Shall roll its tide between us, we are one,
Knit by immortal memories, and none
But feels the throb of ancient fealty.
A century has passed since at thy knee 5
We learnt the speech of freemen, caught the fire
That would not brook thy menaces, when sire
And grandsire hurled injustice back to thee.

But the full years have wrought equality:
The past outworn, shall not the future bring 10
A deeper union, from whose life shall spring
Mankind’s best hope? In the dark night of strife
Men perished for their dream of Liberty
Whose lives were given for this larger life.