Sunday, July 17, 2011

Mere verbal apostasy?

I say ‘mere’ when speaking of a verbal apostasy because I want to figure out if one can ‘merely say’ that they deny Christ while sill loving Him in their heart. What I mean is, if we are in a situation where we will be killed unless we deny Christ, is it ok for the Christian to say they deny Him while, in their heart, not denying Him.


If I took to looking in the Bible for examples of this, the most popular ones I could think of would be A) Meshach, Shadrach and Abednego, and B) Daniel and the lion’s den. In the case of A (Daniel 3), King Nebuchadnezzar II made a large (nine story high) gold statue of himself and ordered that when the instruments were played everyone was to bow down and worship the ‘god’. Of course, the three men didn’t, and in turn were thrown into a furnace so hot that it killed the soldiers bringing the men to the entrance. In the case of B (Daniel 6), Daniel prayed to the true God while the edict was made that ‘any man over the next thirty days may not pray to any god or man besides King Darius.’ He was thrown into a seemingly immanent death; a pit of lions.

So while these Biblical examples didn’t die (in the case of A and B) it should be noted that indeed they were willing to go to their deaths for their faith. As the men replied to Nebuchadnezzar ‘our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us out of your hand, O King. But if not, be it known to you, O King, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image you have set up.’

Furthermore, almost every apostle of Jesus was also martyred for their faith in Christ, and, recent studies have shown that every five minutes a Christian is killed for their faith. That’s about 105,000 a year. And this is not counting civil wars, or wars between nations, but simply people being put to death because of their faith. The fact is, people at all times at all locations were and are willing to die for their faith. And why is that? Would they die for something they knew to be a lie? I wager no man dies for something he knows to be false.


There are, of course many verses to go along with my contention that we are never to deny Christ to save ourselves. In Matthew 10 Jesus talks of suffering. He says, in verse 28 ‘do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.’ He says that our fear ought to be of God, and not man. He goes on with an essential requirement for the Christian to not be ashamed of His name. In verse 32 Jesus says ‘so everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.’ This, to me at least, means once again that there is no case by which we are to deny Christ lest He deny us to His Father.

Suffering, to different degrees is a guarantee of the Christian walk. The Bible says multiple times we are to expect to suffer for Jesus name. Matthew 24 says ‘you shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.’ In 1 Peter 4 is says ‘if you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. (…) Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name. For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? And
if the righteous is scarcely saved,
what will become of the ungodly and the sinner? Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.’

Paul, in 2 Corinthians talks about his suffering. He says ‘for we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again.’ Paul recognized that in his suffering he found that he must rely on God more, and in turn this built his faith.


The task is not easy to follow Christ, indeed Jesus says whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.' (Luke 9) Moreover, he says in Matthew 10 that whoever does not take up their cross is not worthy of Him. And there ought not to be much debate on what taking up one’s cross means; it is a high requirement! (See link for further thoughts.)


1 John 4 says ‘for He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.’ In this we know that God is master over death, indeed He conquered it at the death of Christ. And this should give us great hope. Hope enough to know that in death we loosing nothing, and gain everything. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.’ (Phil 1)

Romans 14 also promises us that if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s.’


In fact, many a time does the Bible talk about those who are ‘persecuted for righteousness sake’ (Matt 5) and their blessings and rewards. Further on in Matthew it says blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.’

In Romans 8 it talks about the co-heirs of Christ sharing in his glory, and that our ‘present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.’ In 2 Corinthians 4 it says that the troubles are momentary, and that they are ‘achieving for us an eternal glory’ that will outweigh all of the suffering here on Earth. It tells us to fix our ‘eyes not on what is seen, but what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.’

Thus, as Christians we know that all of our pain is working towards God’s glory, and that in knowing this we should ‘not loose heart’. In Revelation 2 it says ‘do not fear what you are about to suffer’, and 2 Timothy 2 furthers this by saying ‘if we have died with him, we will also live with him; if we endure, we will also reign with him; if we deny him, he also will deny us; if we are faithless, he remains faithful-for he cannot deny himself.’ Our reward is the ‘crown of life’. (Rev 2) Our reward is living with Christ in his glory.

The Heart/Conclusion

We cannot escape this conclusion of a required martyrdom (when necessary) by the guise of ‘mere words’. God will judge us according to what we have done. (Rev 20:13) More than that, God knows our motives, and according to Solomon (the wised man ever to live) ‘motives are weighed by the Lord.’ 
Paul also talks of motives on 1 Corinthians saying that God will 'bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart.’

So while all of this, to me at least, is obvious and clearly defined throughout scripture time and time again I do not think definitively that ‘anyone who denies Christ will burn forever’. The reason I can’t say is A) I’m not God, therefore I cannot judge a man’s heart and B) I doubt God would sent every person to Hell given the various situations which one would find themselves in; being given the chance to deny Christ to save themselves. (Indeed the same thing can be said for the person who commits suicide as not all cases are the same. One must take into account the mental state of the person, and their life as a whole. Moreover, God will judge fairly in the end.)

The fact is, our actions, in the end, will show how we truly feel towards God, and if our words were hollow or not. I would not say definitively I would never ever deny Christ; for I cannot know until I am tested. But the odds are that someone like me (and someone in the West for that matter) will never be put in a situation where we will have to die for our faith. At this point, I stand by my belief that we are never to use ‘mere words’ to save ourselves. And I would hope that my faith is strong enough that were I to be in a situation do die for Christ I would.

Side note

Let it not be thought that I am telling the Christian to gain a ‘martyr complex’ and go searching of death for the sake of dying for their faith. The Bible is also specific in that we are to avoid persecution when possible, and as a last resort to be a martyr.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

JK Rowling.

It is strange to me, for Rowling to be a professing Christian, be the 12th richest woman in Great Britain, and not thank Jesus (or at least God) for getting her to where she is. How could a Christian not give credit to Christ? I don't know.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Joel Osteen.

I consider Osteen to be a 'false prophet' and here is why.

From John MacArthur

He’s a quasi-pantheist; Jesus is a footnote that satisfies his critics and deceives his followers. The idea of his whole thing is men have the power in themselves to change their lives. In his definitive book ‘Your Best Life Now’ he says (and that ought to be a dead give away since if this is your best life now you’re going to Hell) he says that ‘anyone can create, by faith and words the dreams he desires. Health, wealth, happiness, and success.' The list is always the same. He’s a quote from his (Osteen’s) book, 'if you develop an image of success, health, abundance, joy, peace, happiness, nothing on Earth will be able to hold those things from you'.

See, that’s the law of attraction that’s a part of this kind of system. Here’s another quote. 'All of us are born for Earthly greatness. You were born to win.'(Win what?) 'God wants you to live in abundance, you were born to be a champion. He wants to give you the desires of your heart. Before we were formed He prepared us to live abundant lives; to be happy, healthy and whole. But when our thinking becomes contaminated it’s no longer in line with God’s word.'

By the way, God’s Word is not the Bible, God’s Word is that which comes to us spiritually, that tells us what we should want. Here’s another quote. 'Get your thinking positive and He will bring your desires to pass. He regards you as a strong, courageous, successful person. Your on your way to a new level of glory.' How do you get there? 'Believe' he says, 'visualize, and speak out loud. Words release your power, words give life to your dreams.' And another. 'Friend, there’s a miracle in your mouth.' I think Isaiah might object to that. He said 'I am a man of unclean lips and I dwell amongst people of unclean lips.' (Isaiah 6:5)

Here’s Joel Osteen’s prayer, “I thank you Father that I have your favor.” (Did he meet the Pharisee in Luke 18 or what?-I thank you that I’m not like other people.) “I know these principle are true because they work for me and my wife. Even finding a perfect parking spot at the mall.” Further on Osteen says “God has already done everything He’s gong to do; the balls in your court. You have to take that part of God which exists in you and create your own reality.

What is the source of this? Where does this come from? Answer: Satan. This is Satanic. This is not just ‘off center’, it’s Satanic. Why do I say that? Because health, wealth, prosperity, the fulfillment of all your desires; that’s what Satan always offers. That’s called temptation. Based on the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. That’s exactly what corrupt, fallen, unregenerate people want. That’s why it works so well. You can go right into Satan’s system, make everybody feel religious and turn out their desires, their temptations into somehow honorable desires.

What did Satan say to Jesus? ‘Grab some satisfaction, why are you hungry?’ You need to eat, you need to be healthy; whole. Why would you let yourself be unpopular? Dive off the temple corner and everybody will be wowed. You’ll be the winner, that champion; the messiah. Oh, and by the way, if you just look over the Kingdom of the world I’ll give those to you too.

And why are these false teachers so successful at what they do? Because they’re in cahoots with the Devil. Why is Satan successful? Because his temptations, although they might appear noble on the outside are in perfect accord with all the fallen, corrupt, selfish, proud evil desires of sinners. This is a false kind of Christianity and a false view of God.

As it is, besides the 'God's word is not the Bible' comment (which I'm sure could be explained in a coherent manner which didn't sound as blasphemous) MacArthur is spot on. Osteen preaches a feel good message which, really, counts for naught. Osteen twists the Bible (as Satan does) to use it for his own benefit. The Bible says, in 1 Timothy 6:9 'Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and into a trap and many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.'

The point is, being rich is not a sin, but the motive by which we get rich is. Here's how Mark Driscoll breaks it down. He divides it into four categories.

1)Righteous rich-Work hard, spending wisely etc..

2)Unrighteous rich-Dishonoring God, hoarding, spending frivolously etc...

3)Righteous poor-Honest means, but have little. Give to the needy etc...

4)Unrighteous poor-Casino, spends frivolously etc...

And do we think God cares about our wealth? No, He cares only of our eternal destiny. He wants us to love Him first. (Luke 10:27) In Proverbs 22:7 it says the 'borrower is slave to the lender'. But are we not supposed to be slaves to God? 1 Peter 2:16 says 'Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a coverup for evil; live as God's slaves.

I could go on, but the post would be long, and turn towards money rather than focus on Osteen. Let it be known that I cannot say whether or not Osteen is actually saved (that is not my call) but I merely am pointing out the dangers of his message, and how unbiblical it is.

Not of this world.

I find it difficult in that, the closer I get to God, the more I feel I am not of this world, and moreover, that I have such a more difficult time at dealing with said world. Why is this?

2 Corinthians 5:17 says 'If anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come, the old has gone, the new is here! (NIV) In John 15:19 it says 'If you belonged to the world it would love you as it's own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.'

We are called as Christians to love, but not in the sense that we are to love 'the world'. As Paul Washer says 'If we are not getting any resistance form the world, then we are of the world'. What this means to me is that if we live as the world does, and people are not seeing the difference in our lives something is wrong. How, as Christians, can we claim to be 'not of this world' and yet do the very things the world considers the 'norm'.

1 John 5:19 says that the whole world in under the control of the evil one. We must not be so gullible as to think that this does not included everything. As for me, although I may considered an extremist by some, I think our Orthodox Christianity has been lost in the sea of worldly pleasure. The word 'obedience' and 'discipline' have become nothing more than mere words. Grace has been abused, and we are lost.

And this is my whole point. I draw near to God, and I feel less and less as though I cannot relate to anyone. And I wonder how this can be.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Life as a dream.

Have you ever had a dream that felt real? So real that as you were waking up you were thoroughly confused as to what was happening? And for those brief moments before you were fully aware of ‘real life’ you probably felt one of two things. Either the dream was bad, and deep down arose the most euphoric feeling in that you knew the dream was a dream, and that you were free from it; or the dream was delightful and grand, and deep down you felt a dread coming back into reality knowing you had, still, to deal with ‘life’.

In this way I think we will wake up to either Heaven or Hell, and the feeling of this life will be that of a distant dream. The next life, that is the after life, will be the true life, and we will either wake up happy, or regretful.

When I reflect on these points (and I do quite often) I always come back to the same thing. Am I spending this time in this life (now) wisely, or am I wasting it? Here’s my question to the Christian. Would you, if you were God, let yourself into Heaven based upon your love for God? Sometimes I come to this grim conclusion that if I were God, I would say to myself ‘truly I say to you, I do not know you’. (Matthew 25:12 and Luke 13:22-31)

Waking up to give account of how I lived my life is a dreadful thought. I waste a lot of time. But lately I’ve been convicted on this more and more, and I think as Christians we ought to watch how we spend our time. The late David Wilkerson, in his book ‘The Vision and Beyond’ wrote this, from Satan’s point of view:

“Look at the last day Christian, the television addict! Look at him-hours and hours for soap operas, comedies, sports-but no time to get alone with God. He turns God off with a dial. He hunts, fishes, travels; plays golf tennis, and basketball. He goes to movies and parties, and has become a gadabout, but he has no time to read his Bible or pray. Is this the last day Christian who is supposed to walk by faith? Is this the one who will overcome the world? Is this the one who is to prepare for a coming day of persecution and world of chaos? Are these the playboy Christians upon whom the ends of the world will fall?”

My concluding point is merely that our (free) time, that is, our time in which we choose what to do and how to spend it should be spent with Jesus. I am bad at this, and struggle, but I find after a while it’s not so hard to turn off the computer or deny the odd movie just to spend time with God or listen to a sermon. Just something that tells God ‘you are the most important thing in my life’. Who ever has regretted reading their Bible? I never have. But I have regretted many a movie.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Cold cash and colder hearts.

Lyrics to the song by Thrice.

They are sick, they are poor
And they die by the thousands and we look away
They are wolves at the door
And they're not gonna move us or get in our way

'Cause we don't have the time
Here at the top of the world
Feeling alright
Here at the top of the world

We hold our own by keeping our hearts cold

Different god, darker skin
They are just not a burden that we'd like to bear
They are living in "sin"
There are so many reasons for us not to care

But I'm feeling alright
Here at the top of the world
Doing just fine
Here at the top of the world

We've learned money matters most
So we keep our cards held close
Here at the top of the world

We hold our own by keeping our hearts cold
And we've learned what matters most
So we keep our hearts cold

They are no one
They are nowhere
They are not our problem
Not worth saving
Nonexistent if we keep our hearts cold

They are no one
They are nowhere
How true are these lyrics in relation to us here in the West?

Luke 18:25
For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God.

I would also refer you to this sermon.

Monday, April 18, 2011

More than you can handle?

I have heard it more than once over the past couple weeks, and it's something that bothers me. People, that is, Christians often will say something like "don't worry, God doesn't give you more than you can handle". Often we hear this when we are in times of trouble, or give this advice to people in their times of trouble. But does the Bible actually say this? The answers is of course it doesn't. No where can be found that God will only let us endure what 'we can handle'. Moreover, there is plentiful examples throughout the Bible of people having more than they could handle.

So, if you're reading this thinking, 'I know the verse that says God doesn't give us more than we can handle' and are about to quote 1 Corinthians 10:13 then I must interject. Indeed Paul is not talking about hardships but temptations. Let me quote.

"No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it."

Notice Paul is talking of temptations, and assures us that God will provide a way out in regards to them, but when talking of hardships in 2 Corinthians 1:8 he says

"For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself."

At that point in his life Paul was in fact dealing with something he could not bear. It was beyond his strength. We should not be telling people God will never give them hardships by which they cannot endure, indeed people would not be persecuted if this were true. God will not temp us beyond what we can bear, but our hardships may kill us. That is the truth.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

An invitation.

Randomly, I stopped by youtube and had the robot recommend a video, you know, 'since you watched this you might like this'. I watched geek rap, and two things occurred to me at the same time while watching the video.

First of all I noticed how painfully awkward and absolutely stupid the video was, but moreover, I realized that these people must realize how ridiculous they are, and literally invite insults. Of course, youtube is renown for being a haven for wicked and relentless personal insults, but I wonder why people simply spend time making something that is obviously not funny (as they recognize it as such too) and post it. I fail to see what they expect, really.

It's a strange world, I think, and it's getting worse. I can only shake my head.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

"I love myself."

There is a limit in which one must love themselves, that is, they must not think themselves less than they ought, but see that they are loved by God, and are intrinsically valuable to Him. A man once said "being humble is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less." But where has our generation got to in all of this?

Technology, while being very useful and beneficial in many ways, I fear has hindering our generation not only from gaining knowledge but rendering it narcissistic to a dangerous degree. Think about it. Our generation has more information at it's 'fingertips' than any generation before it, and yet it is dumber still than any generation before it. How can that be?

The answer, unfortunate lay in the fact that since information has become so accessible, people have taken less time to learn it. The phones now can conjure up google in a second, and with a couple words the user can have any information they want about any topic within seconds. Thus, they need not memorize it, for what would be the use in putting time and effort into something 'unnecessary'?

Moreover, with the invention of twitter/facebook and 'smart' phones one can 'stay up to date in real time as to what any and everyone of their friends is doing at that exact moment'. I recently saw a video to which rendered me altogether speechless. It shows a phone commercial of a man who utilizes his new phone and which ends up saving him much wasted time and to end, finally, with the near classic observation 'less staring, more clubbing'. How insane is this? Are people really this shallow?

You see, the joy that twitter has given us is creating a self worth, and seemingly obvious entitlement to say 'you are important, so important in fact that people care about what you do throughout your day, all day.' Twitter makes people think that everyone else really genuinely cares if they 'ate old ham with rotting sausage' or 'drank 27 beers and puked in the shape of a lion'. People post multiple times a day about their random (and often stupid) thoughts, or facts about their current location.

The worst atrocity I can see plaguing the internet is those youtube comments which are, as though children, spewing hate and ignorant rhetoric about things which the poster has little to no actual knowledge about. The comments I read on youtube literally tear away every hope I have of humanity having any redeeming qualities, and show how utterly hopeless our generation is.

In conclusion, rarely do I see intelligent conversation displayed over any means of networking site, and it's quite sad to know that people are so, so ignorant. It's a generation of people being told what to believe, like, wear, listen to and eat by the media and politicians. All the while, too, these people are being convinced they are thinking for themselves. It's a shame.

(And if you can appreciate this post, you may look at my twitter account.)


The irony in this video2 is so utterly and painfully obvious I can barley watch. It pains my very soul to sit through. It’s not even the blatant indoctrination (and exploitation) of children, or the vulgar (and wholly unnecessary) language being used simply for shock value(?), but more so the fact that it’s actually using hate to fight hate. This is absurd to the fullest degree! Here, let me tell a story to illustrate.

A man awakes in the middle of the night to find his house on fire. He jumps up and immediately goes into his closet. He grabs a canister to extinguish the flames and when he pulls the trigger fire shoots out from the canister. It’s a torch. He begins to yell in confusion as to why the flame is not reducing the fire, and screams as the flame gets larger. After some moments, he realizes the futility of using fire to fight fire, and grabs at the water. But by then it is to ate. The damage is done.

Now, this example, while perhaps not being ideal could serve well to equate to the new campaign called FCKH8. It, essentially, is a campaign which is promoting people to fight hate with hate, and is using hate against those who would supposedly condemn them for being gay. It is a movement which utilizes propaganda and indoctrinated children to support them. It goes beyond showing their vast ignorance of Christianity to the point of sheer ludicrousness, and I find this all to common lately. Here’s something a friend of mine wrote.

For hate seeks to cause suffering, it revels in arrogance and pride, it is easily provoked, cynical, and intolerant; but love suffers long, endures all things, it refrains from excessive self love and self edification, it is not easily provoked, and it promotes honesty, trust, and toleration.4

We can see that hate is the antithesis of love, and yet the FCKH8 campaign for some reason is hoping to use hate to promote love.

Lately there seems to be an obvious misconception that Christians hate gay people.1,3 Though I’ll admit, this is not unwarranted. One need only watch the news, but, unfortunately, the media likes to focus on the mislead (and slightly crazy) fundamental extremist groups who misrepresent what Christianity actually is. The FCKH8 video is clearly using hate to fight hate. “You've got it all fukin wrong” says a woman from the video complaining about Christians telling them they're wrong. It’s like watching children argue opinion.

First of all, God loves gay people (John 3:16). Second, God hates sin (Zech 8:16-17). Third, everyone sins (Rom 3:23). (No, fourth isn't God hates everyone who sins.) There seems to be a whole movement, thanks to such fundamentalists like WestBro Baptist Church1 (no association with actual real Christianity) that have elevated this one sin in particular, and built their whole belief on one taken-out-of-context verse in the Bible. There's a great deal of sins people who are not gay commit every day, but for some reason this is the one is being pointed out. The reason, I suppose is because it's an obvious sin to point out, it's easy to point the finger, and Christians are good at doing it (Matt 18:15).

For the record, yes you can be gay and Christian, but you may not practice homosexuality. It's the exact same sin if a heterosexual lusts after a girl (Matt 5:28). The sin is lust and lust is wrong; as a single male, one would not be aloud to commit sexual acts with girls any more than with men (1 Cor 6:9-10). Jesus Himself said 'if you lust in your heart you have already committed adultery...'. God sees lust, not your sexual preference. However, that being said, the Bible still states that practicing homosexuality is a sin.

1 Cor 5:12 says “What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? God will judge those outside.” Paul, when speaking to the people of Corinth is addressing them as a fellow believer, one who follows Jesus. He recognizes that it is up to Christians not to judge those outside the Church, but those inside. (By judge, I do not mean simply pointing out their mistakes, but showing how they are going wrong with love, and offering help.)

The main problem then arises when 1) people don't like to be told they're wrong, and 2) if what they're being told is wrong is something they can't help. The solution is not to go from A to Z. What I mean is if someone doesn't believe in the Bible's truth, then there's no reason for them to believe that being gay is wrong. So the obvious solution would be to start at the beginning; is the Bible true? My problem with Christians is their assuming these people live by the same set of morals, and share the same worldview. And my problem with gay people is that they’re completely missing the point of the gospel and focusing on the few Christians who would condemn them. The reality is that God loves everyone, and to promote hate as though it is something that He consents to is simply wrong.

There's no reason to shove beliefs down throats, on either side of the ‘debate’; this includes refusing gay marriage. By all means, go hard, but don't get offended when we deny the use of a Church. At least understand why before you assume it's hate driven. If gay people want, they can make their own building and refuse admission to Christians, our feelings won't get hurt. But they must understand why it is we say what we say when we say ‘God did not make us to be joined together as man and man’.

In conclusion, it's very bothersome and breaks my heart that the whole point of Jesus' ministry is missed now days, and all the energy that should be spent telling people God loves them is spent telling people God hates them. God loves everyone the same, bottom line. This is what Christianity is supposed to be about, but, as we can all see lately it isn't. Should not we love rather than hate?

1- WestBro Baptist Church

2- Youtube vid (Offensive material)

3- Youtube vid

4-See also this article.


Has Christmas become nothing more than a bunch of rich people buying things for other rich people? Think about it. If you spend ten dollars a day on food you are in the top 20% of the world’s wealthiest people.1 There are some scary statistics about world poverty that make my heart cringe when I read them, and in turn, make me realize how blessed I really am.

So what is Christmas to us? Or rather, what should Christmas mean to us? It’s unfortunate that Christians have fallen victim to the world in this area, and succumbed to following what society has deemed acceptable and what is expected. Try not buying gifts for people and see how guilty you feel. It’s gross that we all feel the need to spend money on each other at this particular time of the year as though it’s somehow more significant than any other time. Sure, Christians celebrate ‘Jesus birthday’, but really, why is there trees involved and Santa decorations abundantly interwoven into our mentality.

I’m not saying all of us, but many of us have missed not merely the ‘reason for the season’ but the reason for life it’s self. Every day should be as though Christmas for the Christian. We should always think of others and spend time helping others. It’s not just a temporal state by which we can help someone to rid ourselves of guilt. Consider the following:

If we could shrink the earth's population to a village of precisely 100
 people, with all the existing human ratios remaining the same, it would look
 something like the following.

There would be:

57 Asians

21 Europeans

14 from the Western Hemisphere, both north and south

8 Africans

52 would be female

48 would be male

70 would be non-white

30 would be white

70 would be non-Christian

30 would be Christian

89 would be heterosexual

11 would be homosexual

6 people would possess 59% of the entire world's
 wealth and all 6 would be from the United States.

80 would live in substandard housing

70 would be unable to read

50 would suffer from malnutrition

1 would be near death; 1 would be near birth

1 (yes, only 1) would have a college education

1 would own a computer

When one considers our world from such a compressed perspective, the need
 for both acceptance, understanding and education becomes glaringly apparent.
 The following is also something to ponder...

If you woke up this morning with more health than are more
 blessed than the million who will not survive this week.

If you have never experienced the danger of battle, the loneliness of
imprisonment, the agony of torture, or the pangs of starvation ... you are
 ahead of 500 million people in the world.

If you can attend a place of worship without fear of harassment, arrest,
 torture, or are more blessed than three billion people in the

If you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof overhead
 and a place to are richer than 75% of this world.

If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in a dish are among the top 8% of the world's wealthy.

If your parents are still alive and still are very rare, even
 in the United States and Canada.

If you can read this message, you are more blessed than over
 two billion people in the world that cannot read at all.

The fact is we in the West have become so enamored with holidays that we fail to realize that there are other people in the world literally dying while we spend money on our friends who are in the top 8% of the richest people in the world. So what is to be done as a Christian?

There is, of course only so much one person can do, and I think we should be doing what we can to help others who are less fortunate. But at the least, we ought to refreign from buying gifts for family just because society says we should. Just because ‘it’s Christmas’ doesn’t obligate wrapped presents filled with things people don’t need bought for the sake of fulfilling society’s standard. Nay, I say we ought to go against the world. I personally refuse to buy adults gifts, and if I do, it is because I fear they have bought me one and feel that they will think me rotten were I to deny them the same gesture.

Frankly, Christmas is ridiculous, and I’m not sure why people only celebrate Jesus on this one day of the year (minus Easter). Half the world live on less than 2 dollars a day, and we spend more than that buying things for each other we don’t need. Let’s reevaluate what we spending our money on during the ‘holidays’.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

New music, by me.

Behold the Rising Tempest is the new band which I have created. It consists of simply piano and violin with various samples from human history. I hope it will be something more than mere music, but, we shall see. I will have songs up on myspace one day soon here.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Am I 15 years old?

Nope. You know, people never cease to amaze me, and it's so painfully apparent that age does not necessarily bring wisdom or knowledge. I suppose it's fine for some people to waste their lives, and insult people's beliefs without knowing what those believes actually are; that's up to them. But as for me, I may not agree with you, but I'm not going to make fun of you and call you names*. It's so strange too, when I encounter these people. It's as though I've forgotten they actually exist because I'm used of talking with (somewhat) intelligent people most of the time, or reading (actual) intelligent people's writings/books/essays/whatever.

So that being said, I shake my head once again. This is not a complaint or an attack on anyone in particular, but, these people do exist, and I avoid them at all costs. There's no need for futile talk with fools; it goes nowhere, and I'd rather save my time and energy. Or, I could talk with a wall.

*Unless you believe in Scientology.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Let's argue opinion.

Did 90% of the internet population miss the fact that opinions are relative? I think so. This video comes to mind when I bring this subject up.

It begins by explaining how he is about to compare two separate genres of music and show how one is inferior to the other. He then proceeds to play one genre, and then the next as if his point is being proven. And there's a plethora of videos like this that circulate youtube.

The statement "The poet T'ao Ch'ien lived during the period of the Six dynasties" is a fact. A fact is a statement that can be proved true or false by evidence. The statement "T'ao Ch'ien is China's greatest poet" is an opinion. An opinion is a statement that can be supported by facts but that is not itself a fact. It cannot be proved either true or false. Others, for example, may agree with your estimation of T'ao Ch'ien, and you may be able to cite passages from his poems that support your view, but the statement itself still cannot be proved true or false.

Opinions may be further classified as judgments (personal beliefs or attitudes), predictions (statements about the future), or obligations (statements about action that should or should not be undertaken).1

What is our world coming to when people are throwing out rational arguments for arbitrary onions? It's a sad state of affairs when people think their opinion superior to someone else's. By this person making this video, they are somehow stating that their opinion is fact, when clearly it cannot be. People need to consider these things when throwing around their opinion. It's foolish is what it is.

Update: see this video for the most ridiculous debate ever imaginable. My point is made once again. I like vanilla, you like chocolate, neither is inherently superior than the other.

1)Taken from Eng 12 assignment.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Bands I'm currently into: Part 3

A list of various bands that I like, but don't listen to as often anymore. On a side note, I generally only listen to Christian music, or something non-offensive if it's secular.

{the rest of my likes}
A Silver Mt. Zion
Aaron Booth
Album Leaf
All Time Low
The Anniversary
Band of Horses
Becoming the Archetype
Between the Buried and Me
Blonde Redhead
Bloodlined Calligraphy
Boards of Canada
Burden of a Day
The Burial
Buried Inside
Chuck Ragan
City & Colour
Civil Wars
The Colour Morale
Colour Revolt
Comback Kid
Cult of Luna
Dashboard Confessional (old)
A Day to Remember
DJ Shadow
Dojo Workhorse
The Draft
Enter Shikari
Every New Day
Explosions in the Sky
The Fashion
The Februarys
Final Fantasy
Final Fight
Four Tet
Four Year Strong
The Fullblast
Give Up the Ghost
Godspeed You Black Emperor!
Here I Come Falling
Hollow Ground
Hot Water Music
Imogen Heap
The Jealous Sound
Joanna Newsom
Killswitch Engage
Leonard Cohen
Life at Last
Life in Your Way
A Lily
Minus Story
Misery Signals (old)
Modest Mouse (old)
More Than Life
Mortal Treason
O' Brother
Of Sinking Ships
On Solid Ground
Our Last Night
Pedro the Lion
Poison the Well (old)
Promise Ring
Raised Fist
Red Sparrowes
Rise Against
Russian Circles
Saosin (old)
Saves the day (old)
Season of Fire
Shai Hulud
The Shins
Sigur Ros
Small Brown Bike
Stretch Armsrtrong
Sunny Day Real Estate
Symphony in Peril
Take it Back!
Ten Foot Pole
This Will Destroy You
Thrice (old)
Tracy Chapman
Underoath (old)
Value Pac
Velvet Teen
We the Kings
The Weakerthans (old)
A Wilhelm Scream
With Blood Comes Cleansing
With Honor
Yndi Halda

I do like more, but, who cares eh.