Category Archives: Christianity

The Magnificent Fifty: Foundation of Faith (South Dakota)

Pierre, South Dakota (Artist: Susan Cassidy Wilhoit)

South Dakota’s State Motto and Seal (1889) and Flag (1992)

Under God the People Rule

 


To read the purpose behind this series of posts, CLICK HERE to read the introduction.

I would encourage you to share these posts.

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The Magnificent Fifty: Foundations of Faith (South Carolina)

South Carolina Executive Proclamation (1994): WHEREAS, We each have been richly blessed by The Almighty whose divine providence our founding fathers sought as they established these United States of America…WHEREAS, The importance of our Christian Heritage to the Institutions, values and vision¬†of our nation is immeasurable…THEREORE, I, Carroll A. Campbell, Jr., Governor of the State of South Carolina, proclaim November 20-26, 1994, as “CHRISTIAN HERITAGE WEEK” in South Carolina.

 


Well, there ya’ go. ūüôā

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If a Monkey Can Do It, Why Can’t We?

Free Movies

One of the great things about modern cable networks is the ability to watch free movies on demand. It’s a great thing, but I guess it’s also a bad thing, too. Free movies mean lots of wasted time in front of a television – because there’s always something¬†to watch.

Well, sorta.

I mean, it’s precisely because I am NOT paying for these movies that the selection is a tad bit limited. When you get what you pay for, and you pay nothing, then you get what you pay for.

So, that’s why I found myself watching “Oz the Great and Wonderful” late Sunday night. I’d forgotten that I’d already seen it back in 2014.

Finley the Flying Monkey

Anyway, even though the movie was rather lame, there were a few well-acted scenes. I especially liked Mila Kunis as Theodora: the creepy, emotionally-ill, heartbroken witch that later became the wicked witch of Dorothy fame. She became the prime reason I will never trust an attractive woman dressed in red that just so happens to greet me in the middle of the woods.

But of all the scenes, one stood out immediately (at least this time around when it was free), and that was the following scene where Finley the monkey indebts himself to Oz.

When I saw this Sunday night, I immediately thought of my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

I was once trapped and bound by sin. A lion that had been seeking me out to devour me was just about to pounce. I cried out to the only One who could save me, and he did – except in my case, He took the lion’s bite for me.

Why is it so hard to understand that I owe him my life? Oh, I know I do, but do I ever really go about it in the way that Finley the monkey did? Do you?

You do realize, don’t you, that without Jesus we would be dead – eternally so. The life we live is only because of the grace of God. The least we can do is echo the words of Finley and say, “You saved my life, oh Jesus. So, I hereby swear a life debt to you. From this moment on, I shall be your loyal and faithful servant until death.”

I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. – Galatians 2:20

If a monkey can do it, why can’t we?

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The Magnificent Fifty: Foundation of Faith (Connecticut)

Hartford, Connecticut (Artist: Susan Cassidy Wilhoit)

Connecticut’s Great Seal (1784) and State Motto (1788)

Qui Transtulit Sustinet

“He Who Transplanted Still Sustains”

Image credit: Wikipedia

If it wasn’t clear enough, here is what Wikipedia has to say about the history of Connecticut’s state motto:

History of motto

The current motto looks a little different than the 1639 version (c.f.¬†Sustinet qui transtulit). It was first seen in the colonies in 1639 on a seal brought from England by Colonel¬†George Fenwick. The meaning of the motto was explained on April 23, 1775 in a letter stamped in¬†Wethersfield, Connecticut: “We fix on our Standards and Drums the Colony arms, with the motto, Qui Transtulit Sustinet, round it in letters of gold, which we construe thus: God, who transplanted us hither, will support us”.

However, this explanation for the origin of the motto is questionable. In 1889, State Librarian¬†Charles J. Hoadly¬†published an article, “The Public Seal of Connecticut” that indicated the 80th Psalm as a possible source. The article stated:

“The vines [on the State Seal] symbolize the Colony brought over and planted here in the wilderness. We read in the 80th Psalm: ‘Thou has brought a vine out of Egypt: Thou hast cast out the heathen, and planted it” – in Latin, ‘Vineam de Aegypto transtulisti, ejicisti gentes et plantasti eam’; and the motto expresses our belief that He who brought over the vine continues to take care of it –¬†Qui transtulit sustinet

To read the introduction to and purpose of this series of posts, CLICK HERE.

Regardless, I’m rather enjoying countering the nonsensical notion that faith (specifically a Judeo-Christian kind) had little to do with our nation’s founding. It’s obvious that if one wanted to eradicate God from the public square, he’d have to do a lot more than silence voices; he’d have to take a chisel or sledgehammer to the stone of our state capitals.

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The Magnificent Fifty: Foundation of Faith (Arkansas)

Little Rock, Arkansas

Arkansas Supreme Court (1905)

This system of religion (Christianity) is recognized as constituting a part and parcel of the common law.

Shaver v. The State, 10 Ark. 259, 263

 

To read the introduction to this series, CLICK HERE.

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Unashamed Of the Cross

Back in 2014, during the semifinals of The¬†Voice, “Team Blake” member Craig Wayne Boyd cranked out a fantastic¬†rendition of the¬†classic hymn “The Old Rugged Cross.” Many people – including those who call themselves “Christian” – were shocked. Why did a singer choose to sing this hymn on a national stage – in a competition? I mean, the cross? Really? What was this guy thinking?

Maybe, just maybe, Craig Boyd was letting the world know where he’d lay that crown, should he win it.

You see, it was on the cross of Calvary that the “Dearest and Best” was slain. It was on this cross that the “ordinances against us” were nailed (Col. 2:14). It was on this cross that our Savior promised that if He be lifted up, He would draw all men unto himself. It was on this cross where Jesus said, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

Without the cross, grace would be a non-issue and the Law would still be my¬†master. Without the cross, Easter would be irrelevant. Without the cross, we’d never been able to witness the most powerful manifestation of love (1 John 4:9-10)the world would ever see.

It was on that old, rugged, blood-stained cross that Jesus paid the penalty for my sin. It was the crossroad of judgment and mercy where the Lamb of God humbled Himself (Phil. 2:8) and purchased my reconciliation with God (Eph. 2:16).

So, why cherish the cross? Because it was and is proof positive that even before I knew Him, even when I was steeped in sin, God loved me enough to die in my stead.

It’s shame and reproach I’ll gladly bear.

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She Was Stumped By Skulls Full of Underdeveloped Brain Matter

Where do I begin?

Let’s start with the facts at hand, shall we?

The Election

A special election for¬†state¬†senator was held in my home state of Tennessee, yesterday. In that election Gayle Jordan (D) was soundly defeated by Shane Reeves (R)… 13,139 to 5,179.

What made this election gain so much attention? What even led the great antagonist and atheist Richard Dawkins to chime in with insulting recollections¬†of the 1925 Scopes “Monkey” Trial in Dayton, TN?

Gayle Jordan is an atheist, that’s why.

But Gayle Jordan (Democrat) is not just any atheist; she is the Executive Director of Recovering from Religion, a group dedicated to helping people transition from “faith to reason.”

(Sarcasm warning) Shame on those backward, hayseed, unenlightened, anti-reason, anti-freethought, banjo-playing hicks for electing a pro-life, heterosexual, Republican white male!

The Reasoning

Well, since it’s all about “reason,” let’s discuss the whole reason this story go my attention. What got me was the reason given for Gayle Jordan’s transition to becoming a “happy heathen.”

From her bio: “Gayle is a former Southern Baptist who left the faith 10 years ago when her then-teenagers began asking questions she could not answer.”

That’s the whole reason I decided to sit myself down in front of a keyboard this morning – she ditched her faith because she couldn’t answer her teenagers’ questions. She said it, not me.

So, let’s ponder that for a moment or two. She was a mother with teenagers, and just because they asked her some difficult questions about the Bible, faith, and religion (because it’s safe to assume they weren’t actually thinking original thoughts but were influenced by anti-religious evangelists such as Dr. Dawkins and others), she threw in the towel and completely changed her worldview?

Amazing.

Good thing that kind of radical shift doesn’t take place every time a young skull full of underdeveloped brain matter queries a quandary.

Teen: Mom, if a tree falls in the woods, but no one is around to hear it, will Al Gore still blame it on global warming?

Mom: Oh my gosh, dear! I don’t know! I guess I can no longer believe in forests.

Teen: Mom, who were the giants in Genesis 6:4? Were they aliens, angels, or mythical creatures covered in rock who helped build Noah’s ark?

Mom: You know, I have no idea, honey! That’s a really good question! I guess I’m gonna have to become a bona fide heathen and use my comfortable heels to crush the multiple pocket watches lying on the beach as I walk over them into oblivion.

But I guess I’m thinking too hard.

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