Monthly Archives: October 2013

Reggie “Fieldy” Arvizu on the importance of an accountability partner!!!

Reggie “Fieldy” Arvizu on the importance of an accountability partner!!!

Published: May 17, 2013 Updated: Aug. 21, 2013 12:28 p.m.

Article Tab: Reggie Fieldy Arvizu, of rock band KORN fame, shares his personal story of how becoming Christian changed his life after a rock star lifestyle of drugs and partying. He visited the youth ministry of Mount of Olives Church, known as the R.O.C.K., May 9.

Reggie “Fieldy” Arvizu, of rock band KORN fame, shares his personal story of how becoming Christian changed his life after a rock star lifestyle of drugs and partying. He visited the youth ministry of Mount of Olives Church, known as the R.O.C.K., May 9.
ROD VEAL, ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER

The student and young adult ministry of Mission Viejo’s Mount of Olives Church – The R.O.C.K. – was paid a visit May 9 by Reggie “Fieldy” Arvizu, bassist for the rock band KORN.

Formerly tied up with alcohol and drug addiction in his past, South Orange County resident Arvizu spoke to the ministry about converting to Christianity and staying spiritual while touring the world with a rock band.

The R.O.C.K.

The R.O.C.K. is Mount of Olives Church’s ministry for teenagers, college students and young adults.

Activities: worship services, Bible studies, community-building activities and special events.

Meetings: 7 p.m. on Tuesdays for middle school students, 7 p.m. Wednesdays for high school students and 7 p.m. Thursdays for college students and young adults.

Location: 24851 Chrisanta Drive, Mission Viejo, directly across the street from Mount of Olives Church’s main campus

 
 
 
 

Arvizu also performed with The R.O.C.K. band and answered questions from the crowd about overcoming his struggles.

As he prepares to kick off a new world tour with KORN, Arvizu spoke with the Register about his faith.

Q. At what point in your life did you decide to make a change and focus on your faith?

A. In 2005 my dad passed away and a few days after his funeral, my stepmom asked if I wanted to accept Jesus Christ into my heart. I was so lost in the dark and after my dad died, I started questioning life and the things I was doing. I open heartedly asked Jesus into my life, not really knowing what that was, but did it knowing that there had to be something better in this life and I wanted it. Bottom line is: God was ready for me.

Q. What advice would you give to others looking to make a similar transition?

A. I would say to challenge God and ask him to show himself real to you. Even speaking out to him is a start. Dig into your Bible. Be curious about Him. You will have a better knowledge and understanding for what he wants for you if you start reading. It says in 2 Timothy 3:16 and 3:17, “All scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.”

Q. How do you balance your dedication to your faith and touring with a band? Some may find those two can be hard to combine.

A. I bring my armor of God! I read my Bible daily and I find churches to go to in whatever city I may be in. I stay away from the party scene. Nothing good comes out of it. I also bring someone out on tour with me to keep me accountable. “As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend,” Proverbs 27:17.

Q. What’s the most positive thing that has emerged in your life since you turned things around?

A. I would say the comfort and confidence I now have when hard times come my way. When a “war” comes my way and I’m thrown into the “battlefield,” the holy spirit teaches and helps me stand strong and get through it with greater wisdom and understanding.

Q. You’re about to embark on a world tour, reunited with original KORN guitarist Brian Welch. How do you feel about these big plans?

A. I feel excited! It’s like we’re picking up right where we left off. It makes me wonder what God has planned for KORN’s future bringing him back.

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An Interview with Fieldy of Korn

Published on Sep 17, 2013

AltRockLive.com caught up with Fieldy, bassist, of heavy metal band Korn to discuss his faith life, touring, and the new record, The Paradigm Shift, which hits stores on October 8th! Filmed on 9/14/13 at Monster Energy’s Aftershock Festival in Sacramento, CA. All Korn songs featured in this video are owned solely by the artist. Songs included: “Ball Tongue” from Korn and “Never Never” from The Paradigm Shift. Interview by Jacob Wilson, filmed by Jamie Howard.

Korn – Did my time

Uploaded on Jun 27, 2009

Korn – Did my time (Lara Croft Tomb Raider : The Cradle of Life SoundTrack)

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Pulp Fiction (3D, HD) – Overdose Needle Scene in optional Analglyph 3D (b)

I wrote of series of four posts on the conversion to Christ of Brian Walsh of the heavy metal band Korn and that was because my son Hunter told me about Walsh’s Christian testimony. Then I stumbled on the Christian testimony of Reggie “Fieldy” Arvizu of Korn. This subject has always interested me and I have written about Lou Graham of Foreigner, and Kerry Livgren and Dave Hope and their similar experiences. In all of these cases they convert to Christianity and give their lives totally to Christ and then they are delivered from drugs.

Fieldy from Korn

 
 
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Was modern science born out of the Christian Worldview?

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The Scientific Age

Uploaded by  on Oct 3, 2011

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I love the works of Francis Schaeffer and I have been on the internet reading several blogs that talk about Schaeffer’s work and the work below was really helpful. Schaeffer’s film series “How should we then live?  Wikipedia notes, “According to Schaeffer, How Should We Then Live traces Western history from Ancient Rome until the time of writing (1976) along three lines: the philosophic, scientific, and religious.[3] He also makes extensive references to art and architecture as a means of showing how these movements reflected changing patterns of thought through time. Schaeffer’s central premise is: when we base society on the Bible, on the infinite-personal God who is there and has spoken,[4] this provides an absolute by which we can conduct our lives and by which we can judge society.  Here are some posts I have done on this series: Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 10 “Final Choices” episode 9 “The Age of Personal Peace and Affluence”episode 8 “The Age of Fragmentation”episode 7 “The Age of Non-Reason” episode 6 “The Scientific Age”  episode 5 “The Revolutionary Age” episode 4 “The Reformation” episode 3 “The Renaissance”episode 2 “The Middle Ages,”, and  episode 1 “The Roman Age,” .

Francis Schaeffer in his book “How should we then live?” stated that according to Alfred North Whitehead and J. Robert Oppenheimer, both renowned philosophers and scientists of our era (but not Christians themselves), modern science was born out of the Christian world view. Whitehead said that Christianity is the “mother of science” because of the insistence on the rationality of God.

Christianity and Technological Advance – The Astonishing Connection

by T. V. Varughese, Ph.D

Without question, “technology” has now become the new magic word in place of the word “science.” Since technology represents the practical applications of science, it is clearly consumer-oriented. Herein is bright economic promise to all who can provide technology.

In terms of technology, our present world can be divided into at least three groups: countries that are strong providers of technology, both original and improved; countries that are mass producers because of cheaper labor; and countries that are mostly consumers. Without a doubt, being in the position of “originating” superior technology should be a goal for any major country. The difficult question, however, is “how.”

An obvious place to start suggests itself. Why not begin with the countries that have established themselves as strong originators of technology and see if there is a common thread between them? The western nations, after the Renaissance and the Reformation of the 16th century, offer a ready example. Any book on the history of inventions, such as the Guinness Book of Answers, will reveal that the vast majority of scientific inventions have originated in Europe (including Britain) and the USA since the dawn of the 17th century. What led to the fast technological advances in the European countries and North America around that time?

The answer is that something happened which set the stage for science and technology to emerge with full force. Strange as it may seem, that event was the return to Biblical Christianity in these countries.

The Epistemological Foundation of Technology

According to Alfred North Whitehead and J. Robert Oppenheimer, both renowned philosophers and scientists of our era (but not Christians themselves), modern science was born out of the Christian world view. Whitehead said that Christianity is the “mother of science” because of the insistence on the rationality of God.[1] Entomologist Stanley Beck,though not a Christian himself, acknowledged the corner-stone premises of science which the Judeo-Christian world view offers: “The first of the unprovable premises on which science has been based is the belief that the world is real and the human mind is capable of knowing its real nature. The second and best-known postulate underlying the structure of scientific knowledge is that of cause and effect. The third basic scientific premise is that nature is unified.”[2] In other words, the epistemological foundation of technology has been the Judeo-Christian world view presented in the Bible.

This may sound incredible to some because of the popular feeling that science and religion don’t mix. Didn’t Christianity vehemently oppose Galileo and Copernicus when they proposed the modern models for the solar system?

The truth, however, is that the real conflict was not between Christianity, as presented in the Bible, and science. In fact, the true conflict was not between science and religion at all, but between the existing scientific view and a new scientific view. The geocentric world view held at that time was not based on the Bible but on the Ptolemaic system which was rooted in the views of Plato and Aristotle.

Historians have observed that the foundations for modern science were laid as early as the thirteenth century when scholars like Roger Bacon showed that Aristotle made certain mistakes about natural phenomena. Medieval science was based on authority — primarily of Aristotle — rather than observation. It developed through logic, rather than experimentation.[3] Both Copernicus and Galileo challenged Aristotle’s authority, using experimentation in the spirit of modern science. The Biblical emphasis of the Reformation, just prior to this, had already paved the way for dropping Aristotle’s authority; it also encouraged the rational investigation of our world.

Perhaps the most obvious affirmation that Biblical Christianity and science are friends and not foes comes from the fact that most of the early scientists after the Renaissance were also strong believers in the Bible as the authoritative source of knowledge concerning the origin of the universe and man’s place in it.[4] The book of Genesis, the opening book of the Bible, presents the distinctly Judeo-Christian world view of a personal Creator God behind the origin and sustenance of the universe (Genesis 1:1; Colossians 1:17; etc.).

Among the early scientists of note who held the Biblical creationist world view are Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727), and Samuel Morse (1791-1872) – what motivated them was a confidence in the “rationality” behind the universe and the “goodness” of the material world. The creation account in Genesis presents an intelligent, purposeful Creator, who, after completing the creation work, declared it to be very good (Genesis 1:31). That assures us that the physical universe operates under reliable laws which may be discovered by the intelligent mind and used in practical applications. The confidence in the divinely pronounced goodness of the material world removed any reluctance concerning the development of material things for the betterment of life in this world. The spiritual world and the material world can work together in harmony.

Genesis also gives another important motivation for the investigation of the laws of nature and application of it to technology. That is the divine mandate given to man to subdue the earth (Genesis 1:26-28). Obviously, the discovery of the laws of nature is the key to harnessing the powers of nature for man’s use and control. Herein is the key to the motivation for developing technology. Genesis 4 records the earliest technological developments by man (4:21-22).

The world view held in many cultures, however, is different from the Biblical creationist view. Religions influenced by dualistic philosophies view the material world with suspicion and hostility. The material world is considered evil, while the spiritual world is considered good and noble. Renouncing this world became the mark of holiness. Equally detrimental to the development of science were world views that did not have a concept of a supreme personal Creator God. Some of the ancient civilizations, for example, which did develop some mathematics and technologies, did not develop general scientific theories, because of the absence of a creationist perspective that gives confidence in the existence of rational laws in nature. This clearly explains the lack of interest on the part of these cultures in scientific research and technology. It also shows how the Reformation, with its return to Biblical Christianity, spurred a phenomenal interest in fundamental research and technology. The great scientific advances and the industrial revolution that followed bear this out.

The Ethical Foundation of Technology

The rise of North America to dominance in technology is related to the Judeo-Christian foundation with which it started. The founding fathers of the United States of America were theists who believed in a Creator who gave moral rules by which to live. The work ethic they practiced also contributed to the rapid progress of the country. In this ethic, all honest work was regarded as dignified, not just the “white collar” jobs. This also has Christian roots. Jesus, the founder of Christianity, Himself chose the profession of a carpenter prior to His ministry. Along with this work ethic, there was also the right climate for initiating research. The free-enterprise system allowed individuals and private groups to carry on research and to develop technology.

There is no question that technology has given us untold blessings. But technology has also been used for monstrous destruction and human misery. This should alert us to the fact that technology, by itself, is not the means of salvation. Releasing the technology genie has caused our world to go out of control. The apocalyptic vision of some superdictator controlling humanity, using the incredible power of the computer or the atom, is no longer a laughing matter. The potential for deception through technology, coupled with the illegal use of technology, has also become a serious concern.

How can we hold in check the wrong use of technology? Here again, Christianity offers its powerful contribution. Jesus summed up the right law to live by in human relationships thus: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” a powerful principle, indeed. It allows no justification for using technology to bring harm to others. On the positive side, this law encourages us to develop that which serves humanity. The ethical standards of Biblical Christianity also include the practice of honesty and integrity. The need for these in the handling of technology is being increasingly recognized.

The rise of evolutionist philosophy in the 19th century has led to the erosion of the epistemological and ethical foundations of sound technological advance. The collapse of moral absolutes resulting from it sets the stage for selfish and harmful use of technology. This poses a threat to the economic welfare of countries where easy credit is available and the appetite for more and more technological gadgets is insatiable.

There are hopeful signs, however. Evolution theory itself has now collapsed under scientific scrutiny. Further, the foundations have not been totally abandoned by scientists. They have been carrying on their research as usual, as if they believe in the design and orderly laws of the universe — a belief that has its roots in the Judeo-Christian world view. The gospel of Christ cannot only hold in check the destructive use of technology by its emphasis on loving others as ourselves, but also provides the antidote for selfish greed, which is behind our runaway buying habits. Jesus emphasized that the abundance of things does not produce happiness.

Back in 1832, Darwin, during his famous trip on the “Beagle,” visited Tierra del Fuego, the southern coastal region of South America inhabited by savage barbarians and observed man at his worst. Their depravity was shocking to him. Darwin swore that the Fuegian savages were untamable. Within a few years, however, the Fuegian savages were converted, through the efforts of a missionary sent by the South American Missionary Society who brought the gospel to these people. They were radically transformed into a rational and civilized people. Darwin was very impressed by the success of the Missionary Society. Keen to spread the blessings of civilization, Darwin sent donations to the mission for several years. Thirty-five years after his visit to Tierra del Fuego, he proudly accepted the invitation from the South American Missionary Society to become its honorary member.[5]

That power to transform individuals and nations is still available. The “Good News” Jesus brought is that the power to love others as ourselves is available to all, from the Creator. When we have that love, technology will be a blessing to all.

— References —

  1. Francis A. Schaeffer: How Should We Then Live (Revell, 1976), p. 132.
  2. Henry M. Morris, Biblical Basis for Modern Science (Baker, 1991), p. 30.
  3. Schaeffer, p. 131.
  4. Henry M. Morris, Men of Science, Men of God (Master Books, CA, 1988), 107 pp.
  5. Adrian Desmond & James Moore, Darwin (Warner Books, 1991), pp. 574,575.

* At time of publication, Dr. Varughese was Associate Professor of Computer Science in the School of Management and Technology, National University, Irvine, California, and adjunct professor of Physics at ICR.

Cite this article: Varughese, T. V. 1993. Christianity and Technological Advance – The Astonishing Connection. Acts & Facts. 22 (11).

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Americans know that we must have work requirements for food stamps!!!!

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Americans know that we must have work requirements for food stamps!!!!

Americans Support Stronger Work Requirements for Food Stamps

October 30, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Newscom

Newscom

Nearly three-quarters of Americans believe that the food stamps program should include stronger work requirements, according to the October Food Demand Survey (FooDS) out of Oklahoma State University.

Other surveys similarly show that Americans support work requirements for welfare.

A 2012 Rasmussen survey revealed that 83 percent of Americans favor “a work requirement for welfare recipients,” with only 7 percent opposing. (The remaining 10 percent were undecided.)

And a 2009 nationally representative survey conducted by The Heritage Foundation found that more than 95 percent of Americans agreed that “able-bodied adults that receive cash, food, housing, and medical assistance should be required to work or prepare for work as a condition of receiving those government benefits.” High levels of support were found by those on both sides of the political aisle, with 96 percent of Democrats and 97 percent of Republicans agreeing with this statement.

On top of this, a survey conducted earlier this year by Rasmussen reveals that 80 percent of Americans agree that work is the best way out of poverty.

Yet the reality today is that the vast majority of the government’s 80 means-tested welfare programs—including the large and rapidly growing food stamps program—do not encourage work. Most act as a one-way handout.

While survey after survey shows that Americans understand the value of work in fighting poverty, policymakers in Washington fail to capture this vision. The result: Welfare spending climbs, rolls swell, and self-sufficiency flounders. The success of welfare programs such as food stamps is measured by the number of American households receiving assistance rather than by a growth in self-sufficiency.

Americans understand the value of work. It’s time policymakers did, too.

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Evil, Evangelism and Ecclesiastes by Melvin Tinker

I have written on the Book of Ecclesiastes and the subject of the meaning of our lives on several occasions on this blog. In this series on Ecclesiastes I hope to show how secular humanist man can not hope to find a lasting meaning to his life in a closed system without bringing God back into the picture. This is the same exact case with Solomon in the Book of Ecclesiastes. Three thousand years ago, Solomon took a look at life “under the sun” in his book of Ecclesiastes. Christian scholar Ravi Zacharias has noted, “The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term ‘under the sun.’ What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system, and you are left with only this world of time plus chance plus matter.”

Let me show you some inescapable conclusions if you choose to live without God in the picture. Solomon came to these same conclusions when he looked at life “under the sun.”

  1. Death is the great equalizer (Eccl 3:20, “All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return.”)
  2. Chance and time have determined the past, and they will determine the future.  (Ecclesiastes 9:11-13)
  3. Power reigns in this life, and the scales are not balanced(Eccl 4:1)
  4. Nothing in life gives true satisfaction without God including knowledge (1:16-18), ladies and liquor (2:1-3, 8, 10, 11), and great building projects (2:4-6, 18-20).

You can only find a lasting meaning to your life by looking above the sun and bring God back into the picture.

Evil, Evangelism and Ecclesiastes

Melvin Tinker

Themelios 28.2 (Spring 2003): 4-15.
(Reproduced here by permission of the author)

Back

Melvin Tinker is Vicar of St John’s Newland in Hull and was previously Anglican chaplain at Keele University. He has previously written for Themelios on such subjects as Jesus in Christian Ethics; The Purpose of Pain; Last Supper/Lord’s Supper: More than a Parable in Action.

A mother in South Carolina fastened her two children snugly into their safety belts, only to sink the car in the river in order to restore a romantic interest with a man who wanted her but not the kids. An upper-middle class college couple in New Jersey, Brian Peterson and Amy Grossberg, delivered a child in a motel room, then bashed its head and dropped it in a dumpster. Jeffrey Dahmer was a serial killer, submerging himself in cannibalism and necrophilia. The Milwaukee jury who tried him concluded that he was not insane – he was just evil.

What does the face of evil look like? A red-eyed Hannibal Lecter peering at us from the shadows? No. It looks like the young couple down the street, the old man next door, the girl on the checkout, the lecturer in the university; in other words, it looks like you and me.

The fact is, people in the West are in deep trouble. Not simply because such events which appal us are taking place with increasing frequency, such that in the USA from 1985-1991 the number of 16 year-olds arrested for murder rose 158%; the number of 15 year-olds rose 217% the number of thirteen and fourteen year-olds rose 140% and the number of 12 year-olds 100%. Rather, we are in trouble in that we have a crisis in finding a category by which to explain such things. What used to be described as evil is now not simply being explained, but is in danger of being explained away. can we honestly say evil exists as a moral category any more? Is it not it just something else like ‘sickness’? Is there such a thing as pure evil?[1]

As evangelical Christians we are being presented with an evangelistic opportunity to engage in a thoughtful apologetic in order to enable a secular society to recognise that it is intellectually bankrupt and has no substantial answer to the question of evil. What is proposed in this paper is an exposé of two of the most common attempts to deal with the issue and then to turn to the book of Ecclesiastes and some related NT passages in order to provide a different framework within which to critically consider the matter of ‘pure evil’.

Pure Materialism

This is the view that everything is to be understood in terms of material cause and effect. The whole of existence is a result of impersonal, blind chance – with a capital C. This is the working assumption of most TV programmes. Here the presupposition is that there is no great mind behind the universe and no ultimate purpose either – only mere mechanism. Whatever sense we have of ‘right and wrong’ does not reflect any objective universal moral standards – at best it is an evolutionary device to ensure the survival of the species. Putting it crudely, this means that a society which is well ordered and where people care for each other is more likely to produce the conditions conducive for survival – the passing on of our genetic material to the next generation – than one in which chaos and butchery reign.

Assume that this description of reality is correct, that as Jean Paul Sartre said – ‘here we are all of us eating and drinking to preserve our precious existence, and there is nothing, no reason for existing’. Then what?

Then we are left living in a universe without morality. One person who saw the consequences of this with remarkable clarity and conveyed it through his writings was the Marquis de Sade. If nature is all there is, he argued, then whatever is, is right. There is no ‘ought’ – one cannot say one should or should not do certain things because they are right or wrong. The moral category simply collapses into the factual category – the ‘ought’ becomes the ‘is’. For him the consequence was his cruelty from which he derived sexual pleasure. He wrote in La Nouvellelustine (1791-97): ‘As nature has made us (the men) the strongest, we can do with her (the woman) whatever we please.’ And he did, hence our term, sadism.

If one were to reply that ‘society defines right and wrong, what is acceptable and unacceptable behaviour’, it would be possible to turn around and say ‘So what?’ But which society are we talking about? Nazi society? Marxist society? Headhunting society? Society itself is a product of blind, meaningless chance. Its so-called judgements are ultimately meaningless and are more often than not the imposition of the will of those who have power. Indeed after de Sade, the one philosopher who saw that power is all there is left if ‘God is dead’ was Nietzsche. In the 1880s he proclaimed himself the ‘immoralist’, ‘the antichrist’, the ‘conqueror of God’. In his Will to Power he said: ‘The world is the will to power – and nothing besides! And you yourselves are also this will to power – and nothing besides.’ Despite protestations to the contrary, Nietzsche’s influence on National Socialism is manifestly evident. Might is right.

However the view that there is no external morality, only what we construct ourselves and that nature is all there is, has taken some in another direction which is hard to refute if we are going to be consistent. Ingrid Newkirk, the President of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals compares meat eating to the Nazi holocaust. She says, ‘Six million Jews died in concentration camps, but six billion chickens will die here in slaughterhouses.’ She also says, ‘a rat, is a pig, is a boy’. In other words we are all on the same ethical plane. Strictly speaking if we are nothing but the products of blind, meaningless chance, who can argue with that? We may be more complex than chickens, but who decides that complexity is of a higher value than non-complexity? Evolution? Hardly, that is just an impersonal sifting mechanism and is incapable of making any moral pronouncements.

Here, however we have a problem for this view forces us to raise the question: Where does our moral sense actually come from? One person who has tried to answer this question from within a purely materialistic paradigm is Michael Ruse, in his book, Taking Darwin Seriously. Here he says:

The point about morality is that it is an adaptation to get us to go beyond regular wishes, desires and fears, and to interact socially with people … In a sense, therefore, morality is a collective illusion foisted upon us by our genes. Note, however, that the illusion lies not in the morality itself but in its objectivity.[2]

Ruse is saying that morality always carries a feeling of ought – that is where its power comes from. There is, however, no objective grounding for this ‘ought’ for there is no God or transcendent source of value. Our genes simply play a trick on us so as to ensure the survival of the species through what he calls ‘reciprocal altruism’ whereby the reproductive success of an individual is increased by helping others – for instance, I see someone drowning, I dive in to help them and one day someone might do the same for me. Or it works by what Ruse calls ‘kin selection’. We feel a stronger sense of moral obligation to those of the same blood because this will ensure the passing on of our family genes.

Yet if morality is to be understood simply as a self-preserving device that evolution has thrown up, and therefore a trick to make us think that we are of value, when in fact we are not – after all a cold impersonal universe is valueless – then it only works if we do not recognise it is a trick, if we really do believe there is good and evil, right and wrong. But once we have seen through it, then we can discard it and say – ‘If I get pleasure out of killing, I kill. Who cares about the survival of the species? We kill rats. Dinosaurs haven’t survived and the universe does not weep. Why should I?’ Indeed it works in the opposite direction and the evolutionary trick has over-reached itself, for now it makes sense to ignore its claims upon my conscience. If I realise someone is trying to con me, then I should ignore the con.

Some, like the champion of atheism Richard Dawkins openly admit that the way to answer the problem of evil is to deny its existence outright. So Dawkins writes:

[p.7]

In a universe of blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won’t find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no other good. Nothing but blind, pitiless indifference. DNA neither knows nor cares. And we dance to its music.[3]

In his thought, Dawkins is being consistent – that is all you are left with if there is no God, just no purpose, no value.

Are we able to live with that? Imagine telling a raped woman that the rapist merely danced to his DNA? Tell the victims of Auschwitz that their tormentors merely danced to their DNA. Explain to the loved ones of those cannibalised by Jeffrey Dahmer that he merely danced to his DNA. Any belief can be argued, even the belief of atheism, but not every belief can be lived. It is ironic that Dawkins added his name to a list of eminent scientists who wrote a letter to the ‘Guardian’ newspaper in 2002 calling upon the European Union to impose a grants embargo upon Israel because of her behaviour towards the Palestinians. If Dawkins were to be intellectually consistent he would simply have to say that the Israelis are dancing to their own DNA! He may not like the dance, but so what? Some like to tango, some like to waltz. Here determinism merges with relativism.

Sometimes atheists use the existence of evil as an argument against belief in God. One scholar for whom this was a problem was the one time atheist C.S. Lewis. He writes:

My argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how have I got this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust? … Of course, I could have given up my idea of justice by saying it was nothing but a private idea of my own. But if I did that, then my argument against God collapsed too – for the argument depended on saying the world was really unjust, not simply that it did not happen to please my private fancies.[4]

In other words, if believing in God causes us problems because of the existence of evil, not believing in God brings with it its own problems too; how do we explain the good and so by way of contrast – evil?

Which brings us to the next attempted explanation of ‘evil’.

[p.8]

Pure Relativism

There is a very important scene in the film Pulp Fiction in which the two main characters Vincent and Jules are on their way to commit a multiple murder contract. As they cruise through Los Angeles, laughing and carefree, they indulge in what appears to be small talk, discussing what hamburgers and quarter-pounders are called in France. ‘Royale with Cheese’ they joke. ‘Is it because they go by the metric system that they have different names?’ asks one of them. The point being made is a clever and serious one – what we name things is relative to culture. Words are nothing more than cultural convention. An act or a thing has no intrinsic value. We decide what to call it – the metric system of one is irrelevant to the imperial system of the other. A quarter-pounder with cheese is to one that a royale with cheese is to another. Killing the undefended to one is ‘affirming the superior race to another’. Everything is relative.

Another film which spells out the problem of relativism, what is right for you is not necessarily right for me – so don’t judge, is a film called The Quarrel. The main characters, Hersh and Chiam grew up together but separated because of a dispute about God and evil. Then came the holocaust and each had thought the other had perished. Reunited by chance after the war, they become embroiled once again in their boyhood quarrel. Hersh, now a Rabbi offers this challenge to his atheist friend Chiam.

If there’s nothing in the universe which is higher than human beings, then what’s morality? Well, it’s a matter of opinion. I like milk; you like meat. Hitler likes to kill people; I like to save them. Who’s to say which is better? Do you begin to see the horror of this? If there is no master of the Universe, then who is to say that Hitler did anything wrong? If there is no God, then the people who murdered your wife and kids did nothing wrong.[5]

And that is correct. If there are no absolutes, then one morality cannot be said to be better or worse than any other – they are just different. Some may prefer say, democratic morality, but then a fascist might prefer Nazi morality and unless there is something beyond them to which they can point and which will adjudicate between them, they cannot even say that Hitler was evil – he was just different, that is all.

Following the pure materialist or the pure relativist, why not abandon any meaningful talk of ‘evil’ altogether and just speak about sickness, a deviation from the norm? In other words, why not claim that there isn’t morality, only therapy?

Thomas Harris posed the question of genuine evil with brutal honesty in his book, Silence of the Lambs. In it the imprisoned serial killer Hannibal Lecter, who cannibalises his victims, is approached by a young FBI agent, Clarice Starling who hopes to draw upon his insight to catch another serial killer who skins his victims called ‘Buffalo Bill’.

[p.9]

And part of the conversation goes like this:

‘What possible reason could I have for co-operating with you?’ asks Lecter.
‘Curiosity’, says Officer Starling.
‘About what?’
‘About why you’re here. About what happened to you.’
‘Nothing happened to me, Officer Starling, I happened. You can’t reduce me to a set of influences. You’ve given up on good and evil for behaviourism, Officer Starling … nothing is ever anybody’s fault. Look at me, Officer Starling. Can you say I’m evil? Am I evil, Officer Starling?'[6]

In 1973 US psychologist Karl Menninger wrote a book with the intriguing title, Whatever Became of Sin?[7] The notion of evil, argued Menninger, has slid from being ‘sin’ defined theologically, to being ‘crime’ defined legally, to being ‘sickness’ defined only in psychological categories.

However if bad behaviour is reduced to nothing but genetic and environmental forces – ‘It’s not my fault, judge, it’s my glands’ – then the idea of blame disappears altogether too. I cannot be blamed for having a limp, so I cannot be blamed for being predisposed towards cannibalism – and we are back to de Sade again who was a determinist. – ‘Nature has made me bigger than women, I like to inflict pain on women, I can and so I shall.’ But what is sauce for the goose is also sauce for the gander, because the notion of ‘praise’ also vanishes. If the bad things I do – the evil – are due to forces beyond my control, then why not the good? To psychologise everything away is to make us less than human – mere biological machines. (This psychologising away of everything is not the same as saying that there is no such thing as diminished responsibility. For instance being compelled to do something by the use of drugs or hypnotism but even diminished responsibility assumes real responsibility.) We cannot blame a machine for malfunctioning – nor then can we blame humans. When we start thinking of ourselves as machines we will soon treat each other like machines. If a machine is broken and cannot be fixed then we simply get rid of it. So why not people? The door is left wide open for involuntary euthanasia.

Nonetheless, deep down we know that evil exists, that we are responsible for our actions and that it is not simply a matter of whether something has an unpleasant effect on us that we deem it either wrong or evil. If someone accidentally trips us up and we fall down the stairs and are hurt, we may not like it and may think the other person clumsy, but we do not feel anger towards him – as sense of moral indignation, If, however, someone intentionally tries to trip us up and does not succeed, we do feel angry. Why? After all, we are not hurt? The answer is that we believe that people shouldn’t behave like that, it is not fair or right, they should behave differently.

If pure materialism on the one hand and pure relativism on the other do not explain evil, but explain it away, what does provide an explanation? We might say, pure Christianity The account we have of God and reality as we find it in the Bible. We may not have an exhaustive explanation of why things are as they are, but we do have a sufficient explanation, an explanation which rings true.

The question was raised at the beginning of this paper as to whether pure evil exists. Let us consider why it does not.

Evil cannot exist purely for its own sake. It is always parasitic on the good. Take cruelty for example. Why are people cruel? Usually for two reasons: either because they are sadists, that is there is a derived sexual pleasure from inflicting cruelty; or else because of something else they are going to get out of it, power, money, the fulfillment of an ideology (which is often power dressed up).

There is however nothing intrinsically wrong with pleasure, power, or money. In as far as they go we might call them good things. The badness comes in by pursuing them the wrong way or too much. You can be good for the sake of goodness, even when it is of no benefit to yourself, for example laying down your life to save someone else. Though no one ever engaged in cruelty because it is wrong, it was in order to achieve something else – pleasure or power. Goodness is itself, badness is spoilt goodness. We might call sadism sexual perversion, but that presumes normal sex which can be perverted. Greed is the good appetite instinct gone wrong. Laziness is the good rest instinct gone wrong and so on. Now we can see why good and evil are not equal and opposite, the good is primary and superior, the bad is parasitic and derived, evil cannot exist without the good, but good can exist without the evil.[8]

Ecclesiastes – a Different Perspective

The problem with most theodicies (attempts to deal with the problem of evil) both secular and Christian, is that there is a tendency to assume that we have access to all the facts, or enough of the facts so that to allow for an element of mystery and untidiness somehow seems intellectually dishonest or at least deficient. So the name of the game each time is reduction-ism – pure materialism, pure relativism or some Christianised equivalent. One dominant discordant note in the book of Job is to rebel against the strand of Jewish wisdom which attempted to do the same by seeing all suffering as simply punitive – you suffer because you have sinned.[9] We still have some Christian leaders who in effect operate on the same basis today, ‘You suffer because you do not have enough faith.’ What Ecclesiastes does is strike out in a slightly different direction at the folly that life ‘under the sun’ can be fully ‘taped’ leaving no loose ends. It does this by propounding the view that even wisdom has its limits, that so-called ‘keys to success’ are notoriously ill-fitting. There is an underlying thought, sometimes made explicit, that we would be wise to accept the unease that life is messy and has an irreducibly mysterious element at its core. The case is presented that by pursuing a realistic question, against the backdrop of a realistic assessment of life and a realistic understanding of God, we are at a given framework whereby we can grasp a sufficient understanding of the problem of evil and hope for its resolution in the future.[10]

The realistic question we are called to ask, especially in the light of so much trouble and misery in the world, is found in 1:3: ‘What does man gain from all his labour at which he toils under the sun?’ What profit is there to life? The word profit (yithron) is found nowhere in biblical Hebrew, in later Hebrew it is used of commercial transactions. It is as we might say the question of what is the ‘bottom line?’ Is it possible to make life successful (even with wisdom) and make a profit out of it? The answer to that question depends upon the nature of life and how it is to be viewed.

One of the main literary features of Ecclesiastes is the repetition of the key word ‘vanity’ or ‘meaningless’. We need to be careful that we do not impose 21st century existential ideas onto the text. This book is not written by Sartre but by a descendant of David, the Qoheleth, the Preacher. The term ‘vanity’ appears 38 times. Looking at 1:2 and 12:8 it also constitutes an ‘inclusio’ – a literary envelope, framing the book. What is life under the sun? It is ‘vanity’ hebhel, meaning breath or vapor or, as it has been suggested, bubbles![11] It is the conclusion based upon thoughtful observation by a man whose theology is embedded in the first 11 chapters of Genesis. This is the view that we live in a world that is transitory, elusive and fallen and leaves us feeling dissatisfied. It may not be insignificant that the same word is given to the tragic figure of Abel in Genesis 4.

In other words, there is a moral fault-line running throughout the created world in which we live. Life under the sun is characterized by tragedy, irony, sorrow, evils which do not seem to meet with any tidy resolution in this life. In chapter 3:16 and 17 we read that there is injustice.

And I saw something else under the sun:

In the place of judgement – wickedness was there,
in the place of justice – wickedness was there.
I thought in my heart ‘God will bring to judgement both the righteous and the
wicked, for there will be a time for every activity, a time for every deed’.

It is, however, clear that such judgement does not always come in this life, as those who would hold the view that God blesses the righteous and deals harshly with the wicked would have us believe: ‘There is something else meaningless on earth: righteous men who get what the wicked deserve, and wicked men who get what the righteous deserve’ (8:14). Evil seems to be pretty undiscriminating – but that is what life in this fallen world under the sun is like. We don’t have to apologize for that – like the Qoheleth we had better acknowledge it and face up to it. This does not mean we exchange one false worldview for another: a worldview of endless optimism for a worldview of deep despair. What is recognized instead is that there is still profit, albeit limited and qualified, in wisdom: ‘Wisdom, like an inheritance, is a good thing and benefits those who see the sun’ (7:11).

There is therefore no proper understanding of reality. One which sees the world flawed but still full of goods (like the goods of work, laughter and friendships, cf. ch. 9) and this, in part, is the source of the tension we feel living in this world. One of the other sources of our problem in facing evil and trying to make sense of it is an inadequate understanding of God. As Luther once complained to Erasmus, ‘Your thoughts of God are only too human’. Ecclesiastes provides a corrective to that:

I have seen the burden God has laid on men. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also laid eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end (3:11).
Then I saw all that God had done. No one can comprehend what goes on under the sun. Despite all his efforts to search it out, man cannot discover its meaning (8:17).

Again, against the backdrop of Genesis 1-11, we are presented with a God who is transcendent, yet personal and imminent, sovereign, good and all powerful. This means that there is an inscrutability regarding his ways and purposes and so we must be very careful in our claims that we can read God’s providences:

Consider what God has done: Who can straighten what he has made crooked? When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider: God has made one as well as the other. Therefore, a man cannot discover anything about his future (7:13).

It would appear that much of the motivation and weakness of the ‘Openness of God’ project can be traced back to precisely this point. In an attempt to defend God of the charge of being bad, he has been reduced to the point of being incompetent. One finds the same in Process Theology, the former being an evangelicalised form of the latter. God might want to make things better, but he really can’t. He too has his limits, even limitations in knowledge about the future. For the proponents of the ‘Openness of God’ project, the tensions within orthodox biblical theology are too difficult to live with and so are relieved at the expense of the ‘Goodness’ of God.

The existential reality Ecclesiastes points to is the invariable tension which exists between faith and sight in this world and the call for us to acknowledge the evil which exists but without compromising our faith in either God’s omnipotence or divine goodness.

What Ecclesiastes does which many theodicies do not do – secular or religious – is to call us to humbly recognize that there is more to reality than that which we experience ‘under the sun’. There is the transcendent. This is what will ultimately give life purpose and direction; as we recognize that we are accountable to the One who has made us and sustains us and who will do what is right:

Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgement, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil (12:13, 14).

We do not have access to all the facts – many of them are hidden from us, but not to God and his judgement will be made. Everything then is not relative for there is an absolute point of reference. Neither is the material all there is to reality, there are, as Peter Berger would put it, ‘signals of transcendence’ all around us and one day we shall have to give an account to our Maker who has littered our world with such signals.

We would argue that part of these signals of transcendence is the reality of evil itself. John Chapman, the Australian evangelist, makes the important apologetic point that this is a world suitable for sinners. The discordant nature of reality, its frustrations, its agonies and endless disappointments – the very stuff of Ecclesiastes – reminds us that all is not well between ourselves and our Maker. That is why the Qoheleth ends with the words concerning the importance of fearing God which is the beginning of Wisdom, and obeying the commandments which embody his wisdom. Therefore that which was overthrown and led to evil being introduced into the world, the Word of God, is the only hope we have that evil will be countered and finally destroyed, although that resolution is not found in Ecclesiastes. We are pointed beyond that, within the grand sweep of Scripture to the One in whom we do find some sort of resolution, the Qoheleth par excellence, the one who is greater than Solomon.

Qoheleth, translated teacher, or preacher, has the same root as qahal – assembly or the church, ecclesia, in the Greek, hence our title ‘Ecclesiastes’. In Jesus we see the one who is not only known as the teacher, rabbi, but also the one who assembles around himself his own little group, his ‘church’. He is also the personification of Wisdom, Jesus Christ is ‘our wisdom from God – that is our righteousness, holiness and redemption’, says Paul (1 Cor. 1:30). What is more, when we look at the life of this Qoheleth we see and hear pretty much the same frustrations and disappointments as the writer of Ecclesiastes.

[p.14]

In Mark 7:31-37 we have the incident of the healing of the deaf mute by Jesus. What is striking is what we read in verse 34, ‘He [Jesus] looked up to heaven and with a deep sigh, said to him, “Ephphatha”. The word used for sigh is anastenazo. Why the deep sigh or the groan? Could it not be the audible expression of the deep sense of frustration at the results of sin, decay and misery which is in his Father’s creation? In Mark 8 we come across the same verb in response to the evil of unbelief of the Pharisees – verse 12, ‘He sighed deeply and said, “Why does this generation ask for a miraculous sign?” To make the connection complete, it is the same verb used by Paul in Romans 8:18-25, with its allusion to the vanity of Ecclesiastes, verse 20, ‘For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it in hope’ and then verse 22, ‘We know that the whole creation has been groaning (sunstenaxei) as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.’ Does this mean that all we can do is share the frustration of living in a fallen world with everyone else? Not at all, we can be far more positive because of what the Qoheleth par excellence has achieved to defeat evil.

On reading the incident in Mark 7 we see a miracle that is shot through with significance. Mark uses a very rare word in verse 32 to describe the man’s speech impediment, mogilalos, which the NIV renders ‘Could hardly talk’. It is in fact a word that is taken directly from the Greek translation of Isaiah 35:6 which looks forward to the breaking in of God’s reign when everything will be different. It states: ‘Then will the eyes of the blind be opened, the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue [mogilalos] shout for joy.’

What is more striking is the response of this non-Jewish pagan crowd when the man goes back to them: ‘He has done everything well’, they say to each other in utter astonishment. What they didn’t realise was that they were claiming more than they knew, for this is the Greek translation of Genesis 1:31: ‘God saw all that he had made and it was very good’. The lesson is clear, the very same God who made the world and pronounced it good is the same God who in Jesus is redeeming the world and that too is good. The one who was promised in Isaiah and longed for by the Jews is the very same one who is performing Messianic miracles in the middle of this Gentile crowd. Far from God being indifferent to evil and the suffering it occasions, in his Son he opposes it. This of course is the basis for Christian involvement in medicine and the caring professions, providing the rationale as to why one can fight against sickness and not fight against God.

In his novel, The Plague, Albert Camus confronts the reader with a dilemma. The town of Oran is infested with a plague of rats. It is the doctor who fights against the plague and so, it is viewed, against God, whereas it is the priest who does not take action and so is forced to take an anti-humanitarian stance. The Christian cuts through the dilemma. God is sovereign, but he is also against evil. In Jesus he taken steps to redeem that which is fallen – that is what the miracles point to and what the cross and resurrection achieve (Heb. 2:10-1 5).

Romans 8 follows on from Romans 1-7 and the programmatic presentation of the gospel in which the righteousness of God is displayed in the cross where God did what man could not do. He dealt with the root cause of moral evil in the world – sin; and the ultimate source of frustration – death. ‘Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus’ (8:1). There is also a future glory to be revealed, marking the removal of all frustration and evil. That is why Paul can write: ‘I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed’ (8:18). In the meantime God’s Spirit has been given to God’s people, so that they can be empowered to fight against sin and the sinful nature (8:9-16).

We do not have access to the complete picture and one reason for that, apart from our finitude, is that the drama is not yet complete. All the main events of the drama, bar one – the Lord’s return – have already taken place. And that one event is literally going to make all the difference in the world. It is then that the final resolution will take place.

In the meantime our calling is to combat evil in whatever forms we find it. Supremely this is to be through the proclamation of the gospel, which alone has power to redeem. Also through social action, for we have a reason to engage in good works (Eph. 2:10). While in this world Christians will feel the full weight of living in a world subject to vanity. Students of theology, if they are wise, will admit gaps in their knowledge but will also look forward to a world to come. A world in which all such transience and moral corruption will be a thing of the past and evil will be banished forever.

Let us end with that magnificent vision of John in Revelation 21 as a counterpoint to and fulfilment of much of the angst and hope of Ecclesiastes:

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.

References

[1] See Charles Colson, ‘The Face of Evil’, in How Shall We Now Live? (Marshall Pickering, 1999), 184-202.

[2] M. Ruse, Taking Darwin Seriously, (Oxford: Blackwell, 1986).

[3] Richard Dawkins, Out of Eden, (New York: Basic Books, 1992), 133.

[4] C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, (Fount, 1978), 41-42

[5] See Ravi Zacharias, Deliver Us From Evil, (Word, 1996), 200-202.

[6] Thomas Harris, Silence of the Lambs, (London: Mandarin, 1989) 20.

[7] Karl Meninger, Whatever Became of Sin? (Hawthorn Books, 1973).

[8] See C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity This is an expression of St Augustine’s principle of evil being privatio boni – the deprivation of the good.

[9] See Melvin Tinker, Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People? (Christian Focus, 1997).

[10] See John Kendall, Ecclesiastes and the Subversion of Success, L’Abri Lecture No 7.

[11] See Melvin Tinker, Wisdom to Live By (Christian Focus, 1998) ch. 1.

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(Emailed to White House on 3-4-13.)

President Obama c/o The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get a pulse on what is going on out here.

I wanted to share with you some about my pro-life perspective.

Newsmaker Interview with Surgeon General C. Everett Koop

Published on Feb 25, 2013

The PBS NewsHour interviewed former Surgeon General, Dr. C. Everett Koop, on the anniversary of the first surgeon general’s report on smoking. Jim Lehrer interviewed Koop for a newsmaker conversation for the The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour from the surgeon general’s office in Washington on Jan. 11, 1989. Koop died Monday at the age of 96.

Dr. Koop.

C. Everett Koop

Dr. C. Everett Koop played a key role in getting the word out about AIDS. As scientists during the early 1980s uncovered the mechanism by which AIDS is transmitted, public health agencies launched educational campaigns that warned, as did this poster, against the risk of infection from intravenous drug use and the sharing of contaminated needles, unprotected intercourse, and the transmission of the AIDS virus from mother to child. It is pictured below.

On 2-25-13 we lost a great man when we lost Dr. C. Everett Koop. I have written over and over the last few years quoting Dr. C. Everett Koop and his good friend Francis Schaeffer. They both came together for the first time in 1973 when Dr. Koop operated on Schaeffer’s daughter and as a result they became close friends. That led to their involvement together in the book and film series “WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?” in 1979.

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In this 1979 film series they dealt with the big social issues and predicted what social problems we have in the future because of humanism. For instance, they knew that the Jack Kevorkians of the world would be coming down the pike. They predicted that there was a slippery slope from abortion to infanticide to youth euthanasia brought on by the materialistic worldview.

February 26, 2013 11:49 AM EDT

Former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop Dies, Leaves Pro-Life Legacy

By Stoyan Zaimov | Christian Post Reporter

C. Everett Koop, a former U.S. Surgeon General who served under President Ronald Reagan from 1982 to 1989 and was known for his pro-life views, passed away on Monday at his home in Hanover, N.H.

The National Right to Life, one of the oldest and largest pro-life organizations in the country, said in a statement on Tuesday that they were “deeply saddened” by Dr. Koop’s death.

“In an era when pro-abortionists tried to declare that the abortion issue was ‘settled law,’ Dr. Koop provided a voice for the voiceless,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life.

The former surgeon general co-authored a pro-life book titled Whatever Happened to the Human Race with the late Francis Schaeffer, which argued for the value and dignity of all human life, and opposed practices such as abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia.

“To this day, Whatever Happened to the Human Race is a must-read for its almost prophetic anticipation of the world we live in today,” Tobias added.

The pediatric surgeon, who was 96 years old when he passed away on Monday, was outspoken on a number of issues, and drew criticism both from conservatives and liberals alike.

Reuters noted that Koop, who campaigned passionately against the dangers of HIV and AIDS, urged the use of condoms for men if they were unable to practice abstinence, in order to prevent the spread of the disease. Conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly blasted those efforts for “teaching of safe sodomy in public schools.”

At the same time, he was targeted by some feminist activists for his pro-life views and opposition to abortion, even being labeled “a monster” by one such feminist leader. As a Presbyterian Christian, Koop opposed the practice based on personal and religious views.

For many, however, he was an inspirational figure and a household name who did a great deal for health education in the U.S.

“He saved countless lives through his leadership in confronting the public health crisis that came to be known as AIDS and standing up to powerful special interests like the tobacco companies,” U.S. Representative Henry Waxman, a California Democrat, said on Monday.

“Dr. Koop was not only a pioneering pediatric surgeon but also one of the most courageous and passionate public health advocates of the past century,” added Dr. Wiley W. Souba, dean of the Geisel School.

Slate magazine noted that one of his lasting legacies is his groundbreaking seven-page brochure, “Understanding AIDS,” released in 1986, when the deadly disease was spreading throughout the country and many people were lacking in information about its causes and effects. The pamphlet was distributed to over 107 million households by 1998, making it the largest public health mailing in history.

“In hindsight, that brochure may not be perfect, but it represented the best available information the country had about AIDS at the time,” Slate reported. “Perhaps most importantly, it made sure to refute the notion that it was an epidemic that only some communities had to worry about.”

Koop is survived by his three children, one of whom is a pastor at a nondenominational church, his wife, Cora, and eight grandchildren.

(normal size jpg)(high resolution jpg) High resolution version (16,596,036 Bytes)

 

Dr. C. Everett Koop is pictured above.

 

In the film series “WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?” the arguments are presented  against abortion (Episode 1),  infanticide (Episode 2),   euthanasia (Episode 3), and then there is a discussion of the Christian versus Humanist worldview concerning the issue of “the basis for human dignity” in Episode 4 and then in the last episode a close look at the truth claims of the Bible.

Francis Schaeffer: How Should We Then Live? (Full-Length Documentary)

Francis Schaeffer Whatever Happened to the Human Race (Episode 1) ABORTION

Francis Schaeffer: What Ever Happened to the Human Race? (Full-Length Documentary)

Part 1 on abortion runs from 00:00 to 39:50, Part 2 on Infanticide runs from 39:50 to 1:21:30, Part 3 on Youth Euthanasia runs from 1:21:30 to 1:45:40, Part 4 on the basis of human dignity runs from 1:45:40 to 2:24:45 and Part 5 on the basis of truth runs from 2:24:45 to 3:00:04

Thank you so much for your time. I know how valuable it is. I also appreciate the fine family that you have and your commitment as a father and a husband.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher III, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, ph 501-920-5733, lowcostsqueegees@yahoo.com

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FREE TO CHOOSE “Who protects the worker?” Video and Transcript Part 7 of 7 The sweeping statement I make is that the prosperity of this country derives primarily from freedom of enterprise and freedom to hire, to employ, to work, and not from restrictive measures imposed by trade unions.”

FREE TO CHOOSE “Who protects the worker?” Video and Transcript Part 7 of 7

In 1980 I read the book FREE TO CHOOSE by Milton Friedman and it really enlightened me a tremendous amount.  I suggest checking out these episodes and transcripts of Milton Friedman’s film series FREE TO CHOOSE: “The Failure of Socialism” and “What is wrong with our schools?”  and “Created Equal”  and  From Cradle to Grave, and – Power of the Market. Milton Friedman shows in this episode how the worker is best protected and it is not by the government!!!!!!!

Milton Friedman’s  best point made in the following debate is this statement:

“The crucial issue is whether governmental measures which have the effect of favoring union organization of giving them privileges and immunities that are not accorded to other organizations in the society, benefit the society as a whole, or harm the society as a whole. The proposition I tried to make in this film was that the source of the prosperity of this country was freedom of enterprise, freedom of employers to hire, of workers to work for whom they wanted to; and insofar as unions have played a role, they have protected some workers at the expense of others, and have retarded the prosperity of this country. I think that Lynn Williams’ statements to the contrary cannot be supported by any empirical or other evidence that he has, understandably, I’m not blaming him for this, he would be faithless to his job if he did not believe sincerely in what he’s saying. I’m not questioning his sincerity, but sincerity is a much overrated virtue in our society. The plain fact is that there is no evidence whatsoever that either unions or minimum wages have made positive contributions to the prosperity of this country. Some unions have, of course, some unions have done great harm. It’s not an open and shut picture in which you can make a sweeping statement. But on the whole, the growth of this country… The sweeping statement I make is that the prosperity of this country derives primarily from freedom of enterprise and freedom to hire, to employ, to work, and not from restrictive measures imposed by trade unions.”

Pt 7

FRIEDMAN: Sure.

L. WILLIAMS: This is only to say, surely __

FRIEDMAN: Everybody can benefit.

L. WILLIAMS: This is only to say that a busy economy, one in which there’s investment and development and so on is an economy that’s a good economy for working people and for everyone else. I think we say that in the AFL-CIO. at least once a month, all the time. There’s nothing in which __ there’s nothing in which we’re more interested than having a busy, functioning economy. The question is how to bring that about. I do suggest and I think __ I think can be defended as long as we want to discuss it, that the prosperity we have in America today that the labor movements have made an enormous __ the labor movement has made an enormous contribution to that and in the absence of the labor movement and in the absence of minimum wage this would not be as prosperous a country as it is.

MCKENZIE: Now hold it there __ hold it there, Lynn. I want to get a reaction to that. He stated the case for what unions have achieved. Could we go around, first of all, do you accept any part of that?

W. WILLIAMS: No, it’s preposterous, you know, as I suggested before. I mean, if we, you know, if minimum wages could make people richer __

MCKENZIE: Unions we’re talking about now.

W. WILLIAMS: Well, if unions could make people richer __

MCKENZIE: Yeah.

W. WILLIAMS: __ all you have to do is tell people in Bangladesh why don’t you unionize and demand a higher wage. You could be rich like the United States.

L. WILLIAMS: We’re telling everyone in the world.

W. WILLIAMS: It’s productivity.

L. WILLIAMS: We told them in Japan it works.

MCKENZIE: Lynn __

W. WILLIAMS: The workers have higher wages in our country because they’re more productive. That’s how you get higher wages. And this just plain __ I mean, it’s nonsense.

BRADY: And why are they more productive?

W. WILLIAMS: Because they have capital __

BRADY: Enormous capital investment.

(Several people talking at once.)

BRADY: And the higher wages are paid and the higher the capital intents of industry.

L. WILLIAMS: And because there are consumers to buy the stuff who have wages which enable them to go into the marketplace and buy something.

BRADY: Without the capital investment they wouldn’t have the wage and it would be no way of paying them without the capital investment.

L. WILLIAMS: If all those workers weren’t making any money there wouldn’t be much prosperity__

BRADY: There would be no way of paying it without the capital investment.

MCKENZIE: Ernest Green, what’s the reply, your reply?

GREEN: I stand by my initial statement, that it is a prerequisite of the democratic society to have trade unions, organizations aligned, workers to band together in their mutual interests, and __

VOICE OFF SCREEN: Are you saying voluntary associations?

GREEN: And if that, if that group __ I’m saying that trade unions like A. Philip Randolph’s sleeping car porters, the Pullman car company would have never, on its own, given those workers who worked very hard and were very productive people, well educated, any increase in their wages had it not been for the intervention of Randolph.

FRIEDMAN: The crucial issue is whether governmental measures which have the effect of favoring union organization of giving them privileges and immunities that are not accorded to other organizations in the society, benefit the society as a whole, or harm the society as a whole. The proposition I tried to make in this film was that the source of the prosperity of this country was freedom of enterprise, freedom of employers to hire, of workers to work for whom they wanted to; and insofar as unions have played a role, they have protected some workers at the expense of others, and have retarded the prosperity of this country. I think that Lynn Williams’ statements to the contrary cannot be supported by any empirical or other evidence that he has, understandably, I’m not blaming him for this, he would be faithless to his job if he did not believe sincerely in what he’s saying. I’m not questioning his sincerity, but sincerity is a much overrated virtue in our society. The plain fact is that there is no evidence whatsoever that either unions or minimum wages have made positive contributions to the prosperity of this country. Some unions have, of course, some unions have done great harm. It’s not an open and shut picture in which you can make a sweeping statement. But on the whole, the growth of this country __

VOICE OFF SCREEN: I’d like for you to make a sweeping statement.

FRIEDMAN: I do. The sweeping statement I make is that the prosperity of this country derives primarily from freedom of enterprise and freedom to hire, to employ, to work, and not from restrictive measures imposed by trade unions.

MCKENZIE: Everybody briefly now. Ernest __

GREEN: And I would say that the intervention of the strong Federal Government, who those employers hire, the kinds of protection, the wage standards, health conditions, are the requirement of this government to protect these people. Because the history of it has shown that hasn’t occurred; and in your case in Spartanburg, South Carolina, again, I argue that the only reason that they can come back now and attract firms from Switzerland and Germany is because, one that we had a strong government that provided protection for all of its citizens which didn’t occur fifteen years ago.

MCKENZIE: Bill Brady.

BRADY: Economic freedom, in my opinion, should not be abridged. I think that these two gentlemen are advocating that it be abridged. They’re advocating a retention of the minimum wage; they’re advocating, I think, Lynn Williams is advocating the retention of the Davis Bacon Act. They do not, it seems to me, believe that freedoms are interdependent and indivisible. There are freedoms __ there is economic freedom; there is press freedom; there is freedom of assembly; there’s religious freedom; and you are advocating to me a great abridgement of economic freedom and when you do that you injure the other freedoms that we have. And if you do it enough, as we are doing in this country today, if you do it enough we are in danger of losing all of our other freedoms.

MCKENZIE: Now we leave this very spirited discussion, and I hope you’ll join us again for the next episode of Free to Choose.

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Brian Welch of Korn and his Christian conversion and deliverance from drugs Part 1

Brian Welch of Korn and his Christian conversion  and deliverance from drugs Part 1

Brian “Head” Welch, I am Second

Uploaded on Dec 15, 2008

Head giving his testimony in a nutshell of his life and how he came to know Christ.

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Traffic (2000) – Drug Overdose

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Brian Welch

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Brian Welch
BrianHeadWelch.jpg

Brian Head Welch performing in Phoenix, AZ on October 30, 2010
Background information
Birth name Brian Phillip Welch
Also known as Head
Born June 19, 1970 (age 43)
Torrance, California, U.S.
Genres Nu metal, alternative metal, Christian metal, heavy metal
Occupations Musician, songwriter
Instruments Guitar, vocals, programming, synthesizer
Years active 1989–present
Labels Driven, Warner, Headdog
Associated acts Korn, Love and Death
Website www.brianheadwelch.net
Notable instruments
Ibanez K7
Ibanez RGD Baritone
Ibanez RG

Brian Phillip Welch (born June 19, 1970),[1] better known as Head, is an American musician best known as one of the guitarists and co-founder of the nu metal band Korn[2] and his solo project Love and Death. Along with fellow Korn guitarist James “Munky” Shaffer, Welch helped patent Korn’s distinctive sound, a mix of sirenlike shards of dissonant guitar that mimicked a turntablist’s various effects and rumbling down-tuned riffing, that defined the nu metal aesthetic beginning in the mid-’90s.[2]

After becoming a Christian, Welch left the band in 2005 to focus on life as a father and to pursue his own solo career. He released his debut Christian album Save Me from Myself, in 2008. He reunited with Korn on stage at the Carolina Rebellion on May 5, 2012 for the first time in 7 years,[3] and on May 2, 2013, officially announced rejoining the band. Welch and Munky were ranked at No. 26 of Guitar World’s 100 Greatest Heavy Metal Guitarists of All Time.[4] Welch’s work with Korn has resulted in over 35 million albums sold.[citation needed]

Early life

Welch was raised in Bakersfield, California. Welch claims that, early in his life, he met Barney. He was different from most kids, and was bullied in school. He liked music, and was a big Ozzy Osbourne fan. Originally, Welch expressed interest in playing the drums, but his father convinced him to play the guitar so he would not have to haul a drum kit around. He began playing the guitar at the age of 10. His first guitar was a Peavey Mystic, which he referred to in his book Save Me from Myself as “maybe the most metal-looking guitar you have ever seen.”[5]

Describing how he got his nickname “Head”, Welch stated, “Guys said my head looked like it was too big for my body, and so they started calling me “Head.” I guess it stuck”[5]

Korn (1993–2005, 2013-Present)

Formation

Korn formed after the group L.A.P.D. broke up, due to singer Richard Morrill’s drug addiction. Musicians Reginald Arvizu, James Shaffer, and David Silveria wanted to continue, and hired Welch to play guitar in their new band named Creep. In early 1993, the band took notice of vocalist Jonathan Davis after seeing his band SexArt and attempted to recruit him. Davis initially did not want to join the band, but after consulting a psychic he changed his mind and auditioned. After Davis was hired, the group decided to rename themselves. “Jonathan had an immediate idea for a new name. He suggested that we call the band “Korn,” and we all liked it. It sounded kinda creepy because it reminded us of that horror movie Children of the Corn“.[6]

Starting with Korn’s self-titled debut album, and with subsequent albums Life Is Peachy, Follow The Leader, Issues, Untouchables, and Take A Look In The Mirror, the band gradually became one of the top-selling hard rock groups, earning $25 million in royalty payments and selling out arenas.[2] In 1995, Welch’s wife Rebekah gave birth to a daughter, but they decided to give her up for adoption. When she got pregnant again, they decided to keep the child. On July 6, 1998, Welch’s wife gave birth to their second daughter, Jennea Marie Welch. The band was scheduled to be on the UK version of Ozzfest, but dropped out so that Welch could be by his wife’s side. He and his wife have since divorced and Welch has custody of their daughter. The two reside in Arizona. Despite being divorced, Welch does keep in touch with his ex-wife.

By 2003, Welch had become addicted to drugs. He would prepare for tours by stashing as much methamphetamine as he could in vitamin capsules, deodorant containers, and his clothes.[2] According to Welch, the band members also suffered personal battles with addiction: “We were only sober for just a couple of hours a day in Korn. Every day. And then when you come home and you’ve got to deal with real life and your wife isn’t having that, crap goes down.”[2] Despite his dreams coming true, Welch did not enjoy the touring life with Korn.

“You travel, you get to another town, you play a show and you do it again. You try to just be at peace but even a big, huge band like Korn, playing in front of thousands of people, it can get lonely. You feel like you’re a trucker and you’re traveling with a bunch of truckers. You can’t connect with people except for the ones that you’re with because the ones you party with after the show, you don’t know them and then you’re gone. When everyone’s drunk, you’re like ‘Alright. Later.'”[7]

Departure from Korn

On February 22, 2005, Korn’s management announced that after almost 12 years, Welch had left Korn, citing that he had “…chosen the Lord Jesus Christ as his savior, and will be dedicating his musical pursuits to that end.”[8][9][10][11] In a 2009 radio interview with The Full Armor of God Broadcast,[12] Welch explained: “I was walking one day, just doing my Rock & Roll thing making millions of bucks, you know success and everything, addicted to drugs and then the next day I had Revelation of Christ and I was like, everything changes right now!” On March 10, 2005, Welch was baptized in the Jordan River with a group of believers from his church in Bakersfield, California.[13][14] He has declared that he has rid himself of all drugs in his “own personal rehab” with God, in which he had checked into a hotel room and sat in his bed for hours.

Welch and Davis had attacked each other in the media since the former’s departure. After Welch said that Davis and the rest of Korn cared only about money, Davis responded in kind, opening a rift between them that has since been resolved. In an interview in which Welch was asked about his book and Korn’s reaction to the book and the attacks in the media he made earlier at the band:

They heard that I’d written it, and there was rumors going around in Hollywood that I was totally trashing them and that it was a “tell all” book about everything they did and I did. And so they actually wrote two songs on their new album bashing me about the book. But once I heard that they were concerned about the book, I sent them a copy and put a note in there and said, “I love you guys. I didn’t trash you like people say. Read it yourselves. It is what it is.” And now they’re doing interviews, and I’ve read that they’re totally cool with the book, and it’s not what they thought it was going to be. So everyone’s happy. But, now they’ve got two songs hating on me on their record. But it’s cool. It’s all good. I love them, they love me. I think maybe I deserved those songs because of some of the stuff that I said after I quit the band. So it’s all good.[15]

In July 2005, Welch appeared on CNN’s feature-format program “People in the News”, where he admitted to having been addicted to alcohol, methamphetamine, Xanax, and sleeping pills[16] before being introduced to the Christian faith. Following his conversion to Christianity, Welch went to some of the more poverty-stricken areas of India to build orphanages, or “Head Homes”. In a podcast with Headbanger’s Blog, on May 30, 2008, Korn vocalist Jonathan Davis expressed interest in playing with Welch on the band’s upcoming album, but stated that it is not likely.[17] In late 2008, Welch, among other celebrities such as Josh Hamilton and Greg Ellis, appeared in testimonial videos called I Am Second in which he shares his story of recovering from drug use with the help of his faith in Jesus Christ.[18][19] In September 2009, Korn guitarist Munky, in an interview with Altitude TV, alleged that the band had denied a request by Welch to rejoin the outfit. In the interview, Munky claimed:

Brian actually contacted us recently and wanted to come back to the band. And it was not the right time… for us. We’re doing well, and it’s kind of like… It’s kind of like if you divorced your wife and she went on and she stayed successful and her career flourished, and you go back and [say], ‘My gosh, she’s still hot. Baby, can we get back together?’ ‘Wait a minute… All the stuff’s been divided, and it’s like…’ I don’t see it happening right now.[20]

Shortly after, Welch responded to the statement via his Myspace and official website, denying the claims:

I recently learned of an interview that Munky gave where he said that I came to Korn and asked to be taken back in the band. That’s definitely not a complete and accurate picture. The full truth is that for about a year… Korn’s managers have been requesting my manager to work on getting me back into Korn. The calls were initiated by Korn’s managers, not my manager. I shut the door on their requests many, many times over the last several months.
As far as Munky’s comment that “everything has been divided already” that is also not accurate. In fact, from January 2005 when I left, and for the next 4 years, Korn failed to pay to me royalties that were due me on records that I did with them. However, I don’t believe this was done intentionally. We are trying to be patient and work with their management to get the financial issues resolved so that “everything can be divided as we agreed long ago in our contracts.[21]

Brian said that it was not only having found Christ that influenced his decision to leave the band. As a single father he did not want to raise his daughter in an environment filled with drugs, sex, and explicit language.

On June 17, 2011, Brian Welch had a private interview, shot by Carson Bankord of Red Rocks Church in Golden, Colorado, in which he discussed his conversion experience.[22] In an interview with Loudwire in November 2011, Head confirmed that he and the other members of Korn are still on good terms.[23]

Reunion with Korn

On May 5, 2012 at the Carolina Rebellion in Rockingham, NC, Welch was there originally as a special guest for a performance by Red. Later that evening, Korn was performing on the main stage and Jonathan Davis brought out Welch as a special guest to close their act, marking the first time Welch had performed with Korn since his departure in 2005.[24]

Welch performed with the band at Rock on the Range in May 2013, as well as Rock Am Ring and Rock Im Park in June 2013 in Germany,[25] as well as Download Festival in England.[26] Welch rejoined Korn permanently on May 2, 2013 and recorded his first album with the band in ten years, The Paradigm Shift.[27]

Solo career (2005–present)

Save Me From Myself

As early as a week following his departure from Korn,[28] Welch claimed through press that a solo record was close to being completed, although there was no release date given, nor had he yet signed on with a label to distribute the record.[29]

A number of demos from these early sessions surfaced on peer-to-peer networks, among them “A Cheap Name”, a song directed at rapper 50 Cent. He also recorded several other songs, including “Dream” and “A Letter to Dimebag”, the latter being an instrumental tribute to “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott, guitarist for heavy metal bands Pantera and Damageplan. In his autobiography, Welch mentions the songs “Washed by Blood,” “Save Me from Myself,” and “Rebel”, which all have made the final track listing for the album.

In an interview with MTV News, Welch clarified a few things. Primarily, he was concerned that it was reported that his new songs wouldn’t be “Christian music”.[30]

During his stay in Israel with members of the Valley Bible Fellowship of Bakersfield, California, Welch continued to write songs for his solo effort, confident that the music would speak for itself. “I want to make music that will help people. I want to use every dime of the money I make off the songs to build skate parks for kids,” he said. “My life now is about helping kids.”[30] Originally, Welch contacted Fieldy of Korn to produce the album, but Fieldy made no response.[31]

On March 15, 2008, Welch announced he had founded a record company with Mark Nawara and Greg Shanabeger called Driven Music Group. The company’s artists are distributed by Warner Music Group and Rykodisc. Welch also announced that he had re-dubbed his album Save Me from Myself, after his autobiography of the same name. Following this, his official MySpace profile went online, and the domain name for his official website was moved from http://www.headtochrist.com to http://www.brianheadwelch.net. Welch also revealed that a tour was expected to follow the release of Save Me from Myself.

For the album, Welch contributed the majority of the instruments, but also hired other contributors, including rhythm guitarist Archie J. Muise Jr., bassist Tony Levin, and drummer Josh Freese, for assistance. The first single, Flush, was released on July 5, 2008, at Cornerstone Festival in Bushnell, Illinois, and a music video directed by Frankie Nasso followed on September 5.[32]

Originally, Welch planned for the project to follow the “Head” name, but was persuaded otherwise so as not to be sued by the tennis equipment manufacturer of the same name. Though the project has since been dubbed “Brian Head Welch”, the album art continues to carry the imprint of the project’s original title. The project’s true title does appear on the spines of the packaging.

Of the album, Welch said:

I knew it was going to be nothing near as big as Korn, but I was proud of it. It’s got some heavy riffs and it’s got a lot more emotion than I’ve ever put in music. I’m an emotional guy (and) it was cool to be able to put it in there. It was cool how people were surprised by it. A lot of people thought I was gonna come out with some ‘Kumbaya,’ Jesus music.[33]

For his live touring band, Welch held closed and open auditions to recruit members. Members posted videos online of them performing Welch’s solo songs and the list was narrowed down to a few who did a personal audition with Welch. Eventually, the lineup was finalised to include Brian Ruedy (Keyboards), Scott “SVH” Von Heldt (guitar & backing vocals), Ralph Patlan (guitar), Michael “Valentine” (bass), and Dan Johnson (drums).

Along with many other artists, including ex-Korn bandmates Fieldy & Munky, Welch contributed to “A Song for Chi“. The instrumental track is to benefit Deftones bassist Chi Cheng, who was in a coma but has now passed away. All the profits will benefit the “One Love For Chi” foundation. This was the first time Head was involved with any of his former bandmates since leaving the band.

In 2009, Head joined the 9th annual Independent Music Awards judging panel to assist independent musicians’ careers.[34][35][36]

On July 2, 2009, Welch headlined the mainstage of the Cornerstone Festival and on August 29, Welch headlined the Exit Concert in Las Vegas at the Thomas and Mack Arena with Blindside and Flyleaf. On July 3, 2010, he was featured on the Fringe stage of the Creation Festival.

Welch has often described his solo project as being received very differently from Korn. Despite his fame with Korn, he has compared his solo project to ‘starting over’: “It’s a struggle, because one show I’ll have a thousand people there, and the next show there’ll be a hundred. When the hundred is there, I’m like, ‘There’s one or two people who really need us to be here,’ and it should be focused on them and I shouldn’t care if there’s a big crowd or not, but I struggle with it. I was in Korn and we sold like 25 million albums, and I can’t even fill this little bar up? Of all those fans, 300–400 people can’t just show up here? It’s like starting over, totally.”[2]

Save Me From Myself peaked at No. 63 on the Billboard 200 while also peaking at 13 and 21 on the Hard Rock and Rock charts, respectively.[37]

The Whosoevers

In 2008, Sonny Sandoval of P.O.D., Ryan Ries, son of Pastor Raul Ries of Calvary Chapel Golden Springs, and Lacey Sturm formerly of Flyleaf created a ministry with Welch and freestyle motocross aerialist Ronnie Faisst. Taking the name “The Whosoevers” (from John 3:16), the ministry “seek[s] to impact those whose pain has previously driven them to addictive or self-destructive behaviors.”[38]

Unreleased songs

According to an interview with the Great Falls Tribune, Welch returned to the studio to begin work on a second album.[33] Concerning his career at the time, Welch said that

“I feel like I was created to do what I’m doing right now. Everything I learned in my life before I changed it all over, it set me up for what I’m doing now. That’s the satisfaction. That’s the peace in knowing, without a doubt, that you’re on the road you’re supposed to be on. There’s nothing more content than that.”[33]

In November 2009, Welch announced that his second effort would be produced by Grammy-nominee Rob Graves (Red, Pillar), and that the band was recording in Nashville, expecting to complete the record by February 2010.[39] Of recording with Graves, Welch stated that “the production on our new record is going awesome with Rob Graves. Our goal is to get the record completely mixed and mastered by the first part of February, and released immediately thereafter. My band is together, helping with the recording, and we will be ready for a full U.S. tour beginning early next year.”[39] Welch also signed an international representational deal with William Morris Endeavor Entertainment. On signing the deal with WMEE, Welch said that “I’m really excited about my deal with William Morris Endeavor, and I’m honored to be on the roster of one of the largest and most storied agencies in existence. I would like to publicly thank Ember Rigsby Tanksley and her entire team at WMEE for their belief in what I am trying to do. I feel like this is the final piece in the puzzle that we have been working on to take us to the next level.”[39]

In addition, Welch signed with Union Entertainment Group, Inc., for management in early 2010. This move placed Welch alongside artists such as Nickelback, Hinder, Red, and Candlebox.

According to Welch in April 2010, he has finished a demo of a record for the songs, but has yet to re-enter the studio to complete the recording process as he is on tour in the United States.[40][dead link] The band has been playing a number of unreleased songs live from the demo of the record including the following songs:

  • Runaway
  • Bury Me, Resurrected
  • Take This From Me
  • Torment

The CD was expected to be released sometime during April 2012, But it has yet to be released.[41]

On March 25, 2011, Welch started a North American tour with Decyfer Down, The Letter Black, and The Wedding.[42] Welch’s booking agent, William Morris Entertainment, confirmed that a European tour is currently being arranged.[citation needed]

Chemicals EP

Welch and his band went into the studio with Jasen Rauch in early/mid-2011 to start recording an EP. The lead single, “Paralyzed”, was released on October 4, 2011.[43][44] The “making of” video for “Paralyzed” was posted on Welch’s Facebook fan page, along with a streaming of the full “Paralyzed” track.[45] The music video for “Paralyzed” was released on Revolver‘s website on November 8, 2011. In February 2012, Welch announced that the EP would be released under the name “Love and Death”, the new moniker for his solo project.[46]

Split with record label

On March 22, 2011, Welch got into a legal battle with his own label, Driven Music Group, and former managers Greg Shanaberger and Mark Nawara. According to Welch, Shanaberger structured Head Touring, Welch’s touring company under Driven Music, to give himself and Nawara share of control and revenue. Shanaberger’s agreements required Welch to buy merchandise through Head Touring at an inflated price which was far above industry standards, “for which Shanaberger and Nawara reaped the benefits,” claims Welch. Welch also claims that Shanaberger attempted to hide “his fraudulent, unethical and illegal behavior”[47] by listing his then fiancee as a shareholder.[47] Welch claims that the agreements were “predatory, unconscionable, and constitutes self-dealing” and that they were written with the intention to “rob Welch of his master recordings, which were worth upwards of $600,000.”[47] Welch is seeking punitive damages, the appointment of a receiver, the dissolution of Driven Music Group, and costs.[47]

Love and Death

Love & Death’s first show opening for Korn on the reunion tour 2013

In February 2012, Welch announced that he was re-branding his music under the name Love and Death, effectively forming a band under that name. In an official statement, Welch elaborated on the name and the change:

The name “Love and Death” symbolizes everything we’ve been through as a band over the last few years. We love this band so much and we’ll go through hell to connect with our fans. Many people have confused my speaking dates and our band dates because they were both being booked as Brian Head Welch. I have wanted to use a band name for branding my music for a few years. Now with the new music coming out, its [sic] time to really separate the things I do. I want the music to be about music. I will still be doing public speaking under Brian Head Welch. I am happy that all the confusion will be over.[48]

The band’s debut single, “Chemicals“, was released in March, while an EP of the same name was released on April 24, 2012.[48]

A full-length album, Between Here & Lost, was released on January 22, 2013.[49]

Despite rejoining Korn permanently in 2013, Welch has elaborated that Love and Death will remain an active project.[citation needed]

Musical equipment

Welch’s first guitar was a Peavey Mystic, which he later sold along with a practice amp to future bandmate James “Munky” Shaffer. Throughout his career with Korn, Welch almost exclusively played Ibanez guitars, most of which were assembled at the Ibanez LA Custom Shop.

During his later days with Korn, Welch and Munky played their own signature guitar, the Ibanez K7.[50][51] Since leaving Korn, Welch mostly uses custom-built baritone guitars from Ibanez, making use of the RG and, at the time, newly introduced RGD shape.[52] After rejoining Korn in 2013, Welch received several custom-made Ibanez seven-string RGDs.

Welch’s pedalboard has grown considerably from his early days with Korn. He considers experimenting and trying out new pedals to be one of his favorite things to do when working in a studio.[53]

Guitars

Effects

  • BOSS PH-2 Super Phaser
  • BOSS CE-5 Chorus Ensemble
  • BOSS RV-3 Digital Reverb/Delay
  • BOSS DC Digital Chorus
  • BOSS DR Digital Reverb
  • BOSS PS-3 Digital Pitch Shifter/Delay
  • BOSS Flanger
  • BOSS Stereo Chorus
  • Electro-Harmonix Big Muff

Amplifiers

  • Mesa Boogie Triple Rectifier
  • Mesa Boogie Road King
  • Mesa Boogie Roadster
  • Orange Amplifier

Discography

Korn

Brian Head Welch

Love and Death

Music videos

Other appearances

Bibliography

Filmography

See also

References

  1. Jump up ^ Brian P. Welch born June 19, 1970 in Los Angeles County Family Tree Legends
  2. ^ Jump up to: a b c d e f “Highs and Lows – Entertainment / Neon – ReviewJournal.com”. Lvrj.com. September 1, 2009. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  3. Jump up ^ Brandon Geist (May 8, 2012). “Exclusive Photos: Korn with Founding Guitarist Head”. Retrieved May 6, 2013.
  4. Jump up ^ “Guitar World’s “100 Greatest Metal Guitarists of All Time” – Blogcritics Music”. Blogcritics.org. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  5. ^ Jump up to: a b [Welch, Brian P. Life Beegins In Bako. Save Me from Myself: How I Found God, Quit Korn, Kicked Drugs, and Lived to Tell My Story. New York: HarperOne, 2007. Print.]
  6. Jump up ^ [Welch, Brian P. The Final Piece. Save Me from Myself: How I Found God, Quit Korn, Kicked Drugs, and Lived to Tell My Story. New York: HarperOne, 2007. Print.]
  7. Jump up ^ “Former Korn guitarist follows new path of spirituality”. Greatfallstribune.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  8. Jump up ^ Brian stated that he ended up walking away from a 23 million dollar recording contract which was a very difficult decision for him at the time. NewReleaseTuesday.com Interview with Brian
  9. Jump up ^ Brian ‘Head’ Welch Leaves Korn, Citing Moral Objections To Band’s Music. mtv.com
  10. Jump up ^ Brian Welch Explains Why He Walked Away. cbn.com
  11. Jump up ^ “Audio Lounge – Live Radio Streaming, Internet Radio, Audio Downloads & Podcasting”. Hope 103.2. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  12. Jump up ^ “The Full Armor of God Broadcast”. Podcast.fullarmorradio.com. January 16, 2009. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  13. Jump up ^ “Valley Bible Fellowship / Welcome / Welcome To Vbf”. Vbf.org. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  14. Jump up ^ Ex-Korn guitarist baptized in Jordan River. usatoday.com
  15. Jump up ^ BY: Interview by Dena Ross. “Former Korn guitarist Brian ‘Head’ Welch talks to Beliefnet about leaving the rock star life after finding becoming a Christian. –”. Beliefnet.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  16. Jump up ^ Paula Zahn Now: Guitarist Finds God. transcripts.cnn.com
  17. Jump up ^ “Headbanger’s blog podcast”.
  18. Jump up ^ “I Am Second: Josh Hamilton and Brian “Head” Welch. ” Modern March | church theology culture”. Modernmarch.com. December 20, 2008. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  19. ^ Jump up to: a b http://www.iamsecond.com/#/seconds/Brian_Welch/
  20. Jump up ^ “Ex-KORN Guitarist HEAD Allegedly Asks To Come Back To The Band, Gets Denied”. Roadrunnerrecords.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  21. Jump up ^ “Myspace”. Blogs.myspace.com. April 21, 2011. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  22. Jump up ^ “Message: Brian ‘Head’ Welch Interview”. redrockschurch.com. June 2011.
  23. Jump up ^ “Brian ‘Head’ Welch Dishes on New Music, Fatherhood + His Relationship With Korn”. Loudwire.com. Retrieved December 10, 2011.
  24. Jump up ^ “Brian ‘Head’ Welch Joins Korn Onstage at Carolina Rebellion”. Loudwire.com. Retrieved May 5, 2012.
  25. Jump up ^ “Brian ‘Head’ Welch Rejoining Korn 2012”. noisecreep.com. Retrieved Nov 20, 2012.
  26. Jump up ^ “Upcoming EU and US Festivals with Brian “Head” Welch”. korn.com. Retrieved February 21, 2013.
  27. Jump up ^ By. “Korn Enter the Studio for New Album – Video”. Rolling Stone. Retrieved May 2, 2013.
  28. Jump up ^ Corey Moss. Brian ‘Head’ Welch Talks God To 10,000 In California Church, reported by MTV News February 2005. Retrieved July 9, 2007
  29. Jump up ^ James Montgomery. Brian ‘Head’ Welch Aims To Save 50 Cent, reported by MTV News March 2005. Retrieved July 9, 2007.
  30. ^ Jump up to: a b James Montgomery. Brian ‘Head’ Welch Hopes Solo Music Will Fund Skate Parks, reported by MTV News March 2005. Retrieved July 9, 2007.
  31. Jump up ^ James Montgomery. Brian ‘Head’ Welch Explains Why He Left Korn, reported by MTV News February 2005. Retrieved July 9, 2007.
  32. Jump up ^ “Ex-KORN Guitarist BRIAN ‘HEAD’ WELCH: ‘Flush’ Video Available”.
  33. ^ Jump up to: a b c “Former Korn guitarist follows new path of spirituality | Great Falls Tribune”. greatfallstribune.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  34. Jump up ^ “Independent Music Awards”. Independent Music Awards. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  35. Jump up ^ MicControl[dead link]
  36. Jump up ^ “Top40-Charts.com”. Top40-Charts.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  37. Jump up ^ http://www.billboard.com/artist/297257/brian+welch/chart
  38. Jump up ^ Smith, Debra (Spring 2011). “The Whosoevers – Bringing Youth to Christ”. In Price, Tom. Calvary Chapel Magazine (Calvary Chapel Magazine) 47: 36–43
  39. ^ Jump up to: a b c “Brian “Head” Welch starts new album | HM”. Hmmagazine.com. September 9, 2008. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  40. Jump up ^ “headfreaks.com”. headfreaks.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  41. Jump up ^ “BRIAN “HEAD” WELCH | Gratis muziek, tourneedata, foto’s, video’s”. Myspace.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  42. Jump up ^ “Over My Head Spring Tour – we need your help!”. App.e2ma.net. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  43. Jump up ^ “email : Webview”. App.e2ma.net. Retrieved December 10, 2011.
  44. Jump up ^ “iTunes – Music – Paralyzed – Single by Brian “Head” Welch”. Itunes.apple.com. October 4, 2011. Retrieved December 10, 2011.
  45. Jump up ^ “Brian “Head” Welch – Watch Paralyzed Video”. Facebook. Retrieved December 10, 2011.
  46. Jump up ^ “BLABBERMOUTH.NET – Former KORN Guitarist Launches LOVE AND DEATH”. Roadrunnerrecords.com. Retrieved November 20, 2012.
  47. ^ Jump up to: a b c d By JAMIE ROSS . “Courthouse News Service Entertainment, Securities & Environmental Law”. Entlawdigest.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  48. ^ Jump up to: a b “Brian Head Welch Changes Band Name – The Gauntlet News”. Thegauntlet.com. February 7, 2012. Retrieved November 20, 2012.
  49. Jump up ^ November 6, 2012 by Casey (November 6, 2012). “Tooth & Nail | News | Love and Death’s “Between Here & Lost” Now Available January 22nd!”. Toothandnail.com. Retrieved November 20, 2012.
  50. Jump up ^ “Korn Equipment List”. Angelfire.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  51. Jump up ^ “Equipment for Korn”. Members.tripod.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  52. Jump up ^ Coward, Anonymous. “Gearwire – Custom Ibanez Baritone: A New Guitar For A New Album With Korn’s Brian “Head” Welch”. Gearwire.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.
  53. Jump up ^ “Ultimate Guitar – Brian Welch: ‘I Was Completely Out Of Energy Before I Found Christ'”. Ultimate-guitar.com. Retrieved June 8, 2011.

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Christian review of songs about God by R.E.M., Smashing Pumpkins, Creed, Tori Amos, Sarah McLachlan, Madonna, and Lauryn Hill

Christian review of songs about God by R.E.M., Smashing Pumpkins, Creed, Tori Amos, Sarah McLachlan, Madonna, and Lauryn Hill

Here is a great article I read:

___________________________

Spirituality and Pop Music - from Tori Amos to Lauryn Hill spacer Spirituality and Pop Music – from Tori Amos to Lauryn Hill
BY: David John Seel, Jr.
spacer
Spirituality is hip and was omnipresent in pop music in 1998. From pop to hip-hop, Sanskrit to Scripture, popular culture displayed a renewed spiritual consciousness. At the year’s Video Music Awards, Madonna, the former Material Girl, performed “Shanti/Ashtangi,” a Sanskrit sloka off her award-winning album, Ray of Light. At the Grammy Awards, Lauryn Hill accepted the award for “Album of the Year” by reading a passage from Psalm 40, and adding “Know that God is great and he conquers all.”And the growth in spiritual interest is hardly limited to the universe of music. One could also point to the popularity of the angel-to-the-rescue dramas on TV, the apocalyptic blockbusters in theaters, and the bestsellers on the soul in bookstores. Some cultural analysts have even suggested that the 1990s may well be remembered in the publishing world as “the decade of the soul.”Is this simply a fad—a shallow fashion statement like wearing a crucifix or Tibetan mala beads? A reader responds in the April 1999 issue of Spin, “This current emphasis on spirituality is just another confirmation of the state of emptiness we all feel at times. But for a chic guru to flaunt it like the newest Tamagotchi is pretty pathetic.” And you too may want to explain this away to a crass commercialism of matters best left in private.

Nevertheless, spirituality is going platinum in the music world and it may well portend to a deeper longing in the contemporary consciousness. It is to this possibility that my comments are addressed.

The Beat of the Heart
Music has a unique place within youth culture. Even more than fashion or entertainment choices, music is the identity trademark of teens. Historian Garry Wills once wrote, “Show me your leader and you have bared your soul.” Likewise, show me your CD collection and you have bared your soul. Tell me what music you most identify with, what posters hang in your dorm room, and you say a lot about the state of your heart. Whether you listen to pop, electronica, metal, Ska, grunge, Goth, hip-hop, country, Phish or the women of Lilith Fair, your choice says something about who you are. For example, if I were to tell you that my nineteen-year-old son who attends Colby College in Maine listens to Phish and my fifteen-year-old son who attends a boarding school in New York listens to Ska, then you would be able to place them in a particular social group within any college or prep school.

Music, then, is the beat of the heart and explores the most basic questions of identity: “Where do I find security?” and “How do I find significance?” Put differently, teens long to “find a home” and to “make a name” for themselves. In the parlance of hip-hop, identity is about “finding blood” and “getting big.” The New York Times Magazine editor Charles McGrath, commenting on a photo essay of American teens, observes, “The really powerful feeling here, the emotion animating almost all these pictures in one way or another, is not so much physical desire as simply the wish to connect: to belong, to fit in. It may not be too much to say that all these kids are looking for surrogate families, for people who will take them in and accept them without question, and what’s fascinating is how much the process is reduced to symbols and uniforms.”

“Will you be there for me?” is the central religious question for youth today, writes Tom Beaudoin, author of Virtual Faith: The Irreverent Spiritual Quest of Generation X. At its most basic, it is a relational rather than a philosophical question. It is personal rather than abstract. It is a question born of broken relationships, laced with realism, poignant with need. It unmasks the fear of abandonment as well as the loss of meaning. It is the cry for an embrace, the passion for intimacy, the longing for fidelity at the deepest levels of the heart. It is the longing for a love that will not leave in the morning light. Augustine, reflecting on his youth, admits in his Confessions that “The single desire that dominated my search for delight was simply to love and to be loved.” It is the desire expressed in Madonna’s 1998 song “Drowned World/Substitute for Love:” “I traveled round the world / Looking for a home / I found myself in crowded rooms / Feeling so alone.” The song ends, “My substitute for love / This is my religion.” Music is an experience that often speaks in a language more profound than words. Here we find expressed the soul’s longings and loves that we don’t often dare to express ourselves.

Spirituality is an important theme within pop music and music is an important vehicle through which teenage identity is expressed. We will look now at three frequent themes expressed through pop spirituality: a crisis of meaning, a critique of Christianity, and a celebration of paganism. This analysis will not examine explicitly gospel or Christian music, even though I am well aware of the popularity of such groups as Jars of Clay and DC Talk as well as artists such as Kirk Franklin. What is of particular interest to me is how spirituality is being expressed musically in venues where it is most unlikely.

Pop Spirituality Unplugged
1. Crisis of Meaning
In the summer of 1996, Rolling Stone magazine declared that the “Hot Mood” of 90s youth was confusion. In the article, Will Dana referred to a line in Yeats’ poem, “The Second Coming:” “Things fall apart; the center cannot hold.” Of contemporary youth culture, he wrote, “We used to think the center couldn’t hold. All of a sudden, there doesn’t seem to be a center at all.” Contemporary music does not simply speak of the loss of meaning, but the loss of the possibility of meaning. Michael Stipes of the rock group R.E.M. sings, “I can’t taste it / I’m tired and naked / I don’t know what I’m hungry for / I don’t know what I want anymore.” Or Smashing Pumpkin’s lead singer Billy Corgan’s shout “God is empty / just like me,” from the song “Zero.” Sheryl Crow asks, “If it makes you happy / Then why the hell are you so sad?” Grunge band, Creed’s My Own Prison album, asks pointedly, “What’s this life for?”

R.E.M. – Bittersweet Me (Video)

Uploaded on Oct 26, 2009

© 2007 WMG
Bittersweet Me (Video)

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Zero-Smashing Pumpkins

Published on Feb 24, 2013

A video for my uni project on the negative side of technology, i focused on weaponry and war, nuclear war in particular. I used clips released by the American government during the Cold War to inform the public (and on the whole) mislead them, by suggesting procedures they could carry out to ensure their safety. Of course in a nuclear war situation, they would make little difference! I used the fantastic Zero by Smashing Pumpkins as the soundtrack.

______________________

Creed – What’s This Life For (Video 2009)

Uploaded on Dec 2, 2009

Music video by Creed performing What’s This Life For. (C) 2009 Wind-up Records, LLC

______________


Reality doesn’t leave many options. Most of the time our answer is simply whatever is fun—follow Jimmy Buffett’s “parrot-heads” to “Margaritaville.” Sometimes our answer is the freedom to have and do whatever we want, a freedom that comes with wealth and power—follow hip-hop’s Master P to the land of No Limit. On rarer occasions, we might think of helping out someone else—realizing with Jewel that the “ugly girl,” “faggot,” and “Jew” are all just “pieces of you.” Education for most people is just a means of delayed gratification for wealth, power, and pleasure. The getting of wisdom, it seems, inspires few songs. And that leaves spirituality. When everything else seems like a wild goose chase, when the diversions seem like dead-ends, some may stop and ask the deeper questions of the heart. There are many songs that explore these cul-de-sacs of meaning-when all our life’s aspirations seem out of synch with our life’s actualities.

Stuck in an abusive relationship, Tori Amos asks on her 1991 album, Little Earthquakes, “Why do we crucify ourselves / Every day I crucify myself / Nothing I do is good enough for you / Crucify myself every day / And my HEART is sick of being in chains.” Jewel explained on her 1998 album, Spirit, “When you’re standing in deep water / And you’re bailing yourself out with a straw / And when you’re drowning in deep water / And you wake up making love to a wall / Well it’s these little times that help to remind / It’s nothing without love.” But “Is love possible in a world like this?” Amos asks whether love is only a series of one-night stands where sex substitutes for intimacy. Is there more than sex? Can you hold what I hold dear? Will you be there for me?

Songs about sex, love, and relationships are essentially spiritual explorations about the meaning of life at heart-level. Listen to Tori Amos’ song “Leather,” to the poignancy of her questions. There is nothing theoretical or abstract about the fear, loneliness, and finally despair exposed in her music.

Tori Amos Leather

Uploaded on Jan 7, 2007

Tori Amos, Leather

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“Leather”
Tori Amos, Little Earthquakes (1991)

Look I’m standing naked before you
Don’t you want more than my sex
I can scream as loud as your last one
But I can’t claim innocence

Oh god could it be the weather
Oh god why am I here
If love isn’t forever
And it’s NOT THE WEATHER
Hand me my leather

I could just pretend that you love me
The night would lose all sense of fear
But why do I need you to love me
When you can’t hold what I hold dear

I almost ran over an angel
He had a nice big fat cigar
“IN A SENSE” he said
“You’re alone here
So if you jump you best jump far”…

The angel’s spiritual counsel is that you are, in fact, alone here, and so if you want a solution, you’d best jump far. Many are following Tori Amos’ lead by abandoning traditional religious answers for newer forms of spirituality. But in route, a few cheap shots at one’s upbringing are standard fare. This is the second theme of pop spirituality—a critique of Christianity.

2. Critique of Christianity
Tori Amos was born the daughter of a North Carolina Methodist minister. She long since abandoned Christianity for a mythical, pagan, fairy world. Amos is the “Anne Rice of rock,” or as another observer put it, “a moon child for lost souls and misfits.” Her hostility toward Christianity—in part explainable to her experience of rape—is legendary. (Listen to her song, “Me and a Gun,” on Little Earthquakes.) Rolling Stone’s Steven Daly says of Amos, “The woman has few peers in the God-baiting stakes. Compared with the Amos oeuvre, Madonna’s blasphemous stunts look positively devout; and when this little minister’s daughter starts exorcising the ‘shame’ of her ‘Victorian Christian’ upbringing, she makes soi-disant Satanist Marilyn Manson seem cartoonish and ineffectual.”

“Yes, I do have a mission,” Amos says bluntly, “To expose the dark side of Christianity.” Of her song, “God,” on the 1996 album, Boys For Pele, she comments, “Why don’t people want to hear about God getting a blow job? I thought those born-again Christians would love that.”

Emily Saliers of Indigo Girls is also a preacher’s kid. In her 1989 song, “Closer To Fine,” she proclaims her liberation from moral absolutes, “The less I seek my source for some definitive / The closer I am to fine.” On R.E.M.’s 1991 Out of Time album, Michael Stipes sings about “Losing My Religion.” Alanis Morisette, on her 1995 Jagged Little Pill album, takes aim at her Catholic upbringing in her song, “Forgiven:” “We all had delusions in our heads / We all had our minds made up for us / We had to believe in something / So we did.”

Pop spirituality is largely spirituality without God, if God is understood as the transcendent God of the Bible. Sarah McLachlan in her 1997 cover of XTC’s song “Dear God,” sings a cosmic “Dear John” letter blaming God for all the evil and disease in the world. Listen to her musical testimony to the rejection of God.

Sarah McLachlan Dear God

Uploaded on Dec 19, 2010

Heartwrenching cover of the XTC song…a commentary on the authenticity of the traditional portrayal of the universal construction which shockingly retains its creationist ideologies. To question is to illuminate.

________________________


“Dear God”
Sarah McLachlan, Sampler (1997)

Dear God,
Hope you got the letter down here.
I don’t mean a big reduction in the price of beer
But all the people that you made in your image,
See them starving on their feet
‘Cause they don’t get enough to eat
From God
I can’t believe in you.

Dear God,
Sorry to disturb you, but
I feel that I should be heard loud and clear.
We all need a big reduction in the amount of tears
And all the people that you made in your image,
See them fighting in the street
‘Cause they can’t make opinions meet
About God,
I can’t believe in you.

Did you make disease, and the diamond blue?
Did you make mankind after we made you?
And the devil, too?!

Dear God,
Don’t know if you notice, but…
Your name is on a lot of quotes in this book,
Us crazy humans wrote it, you should take a look,
And all the people that you made in your image,
Still believing that junk is true
Well I know it ain’t, and so do you

Dear God,
I can’t believe in…
I don’t believe in…

I won’t believe in heaven and hell.
No saints, no sinners, no devil as well.
No pearly gates, no thorny crown.
You’re always letting us humans down.
The wars you bring, the babes you drown.
And it’s the same the whole world ‘round.
The hurt I see helps to compound
That Father, Son, and Holy Ghost
Is just somebody’s unholy hoax
And if you’re up there you’d perceive
That my heart’s here upon my sleeve.
If there’s one thing I don’t believe in….

It’s you…
Dear God.

There are many people who may still use “god-talk,” but in more and more cases the meaning has changed. The immanent gods of Nature are replacing the historic transcendent Creator God of Christianity. This is the third trend in pop spirituality: the celebration of paganism.

3. Celebration of Paganism
With a few notable exceptions, God is largely dead in pop spirituality. Instead we are offered a design-it-yourself, cafeteria approach to religion that is non-institutional, individualist, subjective, and syncretistic. The cover of July-August 1998 UTNE Reader reads, “Designer God: In a mix-and-match world, why not create your own religion?” Pop spirituality is infused with an eclectic array of Eastern and neopagan spiritualities. “Contemporary American spirituality is largely a cut-and-paste affair,” writes Spin’s Erik Davis, “perfectly in tune with today’s musical mixology.”

The central characteristic of contemporary spirituality is an “inner pluralism.” All of the world religions are found in a single psyche. Traditional boundaries between religion dissolve and individuals hold multiple citizenship in a number of separate faiths with no complete allegiance to any. Princeton sociologist Robert Wuthnow recently interviewed a 26-year-old disabilities counselor for a study on American spirituality. She described her religious preference as “Methodist-Taoist-Native American-Quaker-Russian Orthodox-Buddhist-Jew.” Spirituality today is a divine deli where consumers of meaning pick and choose among increasingly exotic pagan alternatives. Art historian Camille Paglia argues that “Popular culture is an eruption of paganism… Judeo-Christianity never defeated paganism but rather drove it underground, from which it constantly erupts in all kinds of ways.”

The rebirth of paganism is a return to varieties of pantheism, the worship of nature. Pantheism, C.S. Lewis observed, is “humanity’s natural religion.” Here one doesn’t get “saved,” one gets “connected.” Pagan wisdom consists in the attempt to understand how our lives are to be properly placed and perceived within the forces of Nature. The aim is to open one’s heart to these unseen realities. “Consumed with how much you get,” Madonna chides, “you’re frozen when your heart is not open.” Pop spirituality combines personal autonomy with cosmic meaning. “You hold the key,” Madonna explains. Everyone follows their own road as they follow the signs of their heart. Listen to Madonna’s techno-influenced “Sky Fits Heaven” on the 1998 Grammy Pop Album of the Year, Ray of Light.

Madonna – 07. Sky Fits Heaven

Uploaded on Apr 27, 2011

Sky Fits Heaven
Madonna
Ray Of Light [1998]

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“Sky Fits Heaven”
Madonna, Ray of Light (1998)

Sky fits heaven so fly it
That’s what the prophet said to me
Child fits mother so hold your baby tight
That’s what my future could see

Fate fits karma so use it
That’s what the wise man said to me
Love fits virtue so hold on to the light
That’s what our future will be

Traveling down this road
Watching the signs as I go
I think I’ll follow the sun
Isn’t everyone just

Traveling down their own road
Watching the signs as they go
I think I’ll follow my heart
It’s a very good place to start

Traveling down my own road
Watching the signs as they go
Traveling down my own road
Watching the signs as I go
Traveling, traveling
Watching the signs as I go

Hand fits giving so do it
That’s what the Gospel said to me
Life fits living so let your judgments go
That’s how our future should be

Traveling down this road
Watching the signs as I go
Think I’ll follow the sun
Isn’t everyone just

Traveling down their own road
Watching the signs as they go
Think I’ll follow my heart
It’s a very good place to start

Traveling down my own road
Watching the signs as they go

Just in case anyone misses her religious direction, “Sky Fits Heaven” flows seamlessly into the next song, Madonna’s Sanskrit version of a Hindu prayer.

Examined more closely, however, theoretical pantheism quickly degenerates into practical “metheism.” The worship of nature becomes the worship of one’s own nature, even the spiritualizing of one’s instincts, bordering on autoeroticism.

Neale Donald Walsch’s book series Conversations With God is a multi-year run-away best seller. What is it that makes these books so popular? Walsch’s central argument is simply that God is me. Listen to these excerpts: “Blessed are the Self-centered, for they shall know God… The highest good is that which produces the highest good for you… A thing is only right or wrong because you say it is. A thing is not right or wrong intrinsically… So be ready, kind soul. For you will be vilified and spat upon…from the moment you accept and adopt your holy cause—the realization of Self.”

G. K. Chesterton was right to warn, “That Jones shall worship the god within him turns out ultimately to mean that Jones shall worship Jones.” Again Spin’s Erik Davis observes of the current music scene, “Mystical options such as yoga and pop cabala offer direct access to deeper essence, without the pesky moral codes of conventional religion. Unfortunately, this search can easily degenerate into another American cult of the self, a cult that already enshrines celebrities as the closest thing mortals come to being realized beings.” Likewise, Princeton theologian Thomas Molnar concludes, “A good case can be made for the proposition that what attracts members of a weakened Christian civilization to Oriental creeds and occult doctrines is not Buddhism, the Tantra, the Tao, the Zen, Brahmanism, or shamanism. Much more important, is the presence in each of these new religions…of the hope of self-divination.”

This is consumer spirituality well suited for the celebrity limelight and lifestyle. Paganism is spirituality attuned to the postmodern zeitgeist; for in the end, it celebrates self and sex. Whenever meaning is sought in Nature its practice takes a predictable course—and it has been this way from the beginning of time: a personal deity offers a personal morality reinforced by a personal power, which ends in the worship of the person and their passions. Paganism always ends in that which is violent and orgiastic. Chesterton again observes, “A man loves Nature in the morning for her innocence and amiability, and at nightfall, if he is loving her still, it is for her darkness and her cruelty.” Paganism is a theology of hubris and hedonism.

Pop spirituality, then, quickly becomes the highest form of self-worship—the divination of ego, the spiritualizing of desire. This is religion adapted to therapeutic consumerism: cosmic meaning without personal morality, self-affirmation without self-constraint. Jewel, whose debut 1995 album Pieces of You sold over 10 million copies, asks, “Who will save your soul, if you won’t save your own?” Who’s my savior in pop spirituality? In the final analysis, I am. God is me and what I want is god.

The Miseducation of Spirituality Lite
But the story doesn’t end here. Enter Lauryn Hill. In her truly remarkable debut solo hip-hop album, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, she raises the stakes on pop spirituality lite. Here is a 23-year-old with spiritual unction. “There is always a spiritual war, but there’s a battle for the souls of black folk, and just folk in general, and the music has a lot to do with it,” she says. In interviews, Hill unequivocally describes herself as Christian (tinged with Rastafarian influences). Locating her prophetic message within the Christian narrative gives her words an unusual gravity and grace. Life is lived not for personal freedom, but personal responsibility. One’s choices are made before the face of God. In her song, “Final Hour,” she challenges the avarice of hip-hop: “You could get the money / You could get the power / But keep your eyes on the final hour.” In “Superstar,” Hill warns that no one—not even hip-hop superstars—can live above spiritual laws: “Now tell me your philosophy / On exactly what an artist should be / Should they be someone with prosperity / And no concept of reality? / Now who you know without any flaws / That lives above the spiritual laws / And does anything they feel just because / There’s always someone there who’ll applaud.”

The significance of Lauryn Hill’s accomplishments—10 Grammy Award nominations, 5 Grammy Awards (more than any other artist in history), a triple-platinum album—cannot be appreciated without understanding hip-hop. Mall America has become hip-hop. Hip-hop is pop style. No other musical genre has as much influence today in youth culture than rap. “Hip-hop is the rock of today,” boasts MC Jean Wyclef. “It is the folk music of this generation,” says Beck. Music critic Nelson George writes, “Now we know that rap music, and hip-hop style as a whole, has utterly broken through from its ghetto roots to assert a lasting influence on American clothing, magazine publication, television, language, sexuality, and social policy as well as its obvious presence in records and movies.” In 1998, for the first time ever, rap out-sold what previously had been America’s top-selling format, country music. White kids purchase more than 70% of hip-hop albums. There is an increasing influence of white rap artist such as the Beastie Boys, Everlast, and the artist Eminen, (a.k.a. Marshall Mathers) a white 19-year-old rapper from Detroit backed by Dr. Dre.

Nor is hip-hop known for its positive message. “Hip-hop is the rebellious voice of youth. It’s what people want to hear,” explains MC Jay-Z in Time’s cover story, “Hip-Hop Nation.” “Kids don’t want to be like Mike anymore. Their heroes are rappers,” claims MC Sean (Puffy) Combs. The central tenets of hip-hop are rebellion, aggression, and materialism. It is pop culture’s answer to commodified rebellion. “Hip-hop is perhaps the only art form that celebrates capitalism openly…. Rappers make money without remorse,” writes Time’s Christopher Farley. Hip-hop is hoppin’, writes Nelson George, because “materialism replaced spirituality as the definer of life’s worth…. A voracious appetite for ‘goods,’ not good.”

Hip-hop is the most image-driven part of pop music and has spawned a revolution in fashion. By 1996, Tommy Hilfiger had become the leading apparel company traded on the New York Stock Exchange largely due to its embrace of hip-hop. Finally, hip-hop promotes an in-your-face aggressive attitude toward others. Hip-hop rules the world of youth culture for a reason. It reflects what kids are thinking, an uncaring attitude about rules or responsibility.

Not so Lauryn Hill. She is on a mission to change the world for the good. Change will come, she argues, from the inside out. “How you gon’ win / When you ain’t right within?” she asks in her hot single, “Doo Wop That Thing.” Hers is a message of hope and optimism like Jewel. But unlike Jewel, her confidence is in a God who is more than a New Age dream or a neopagan natural force. She sings of our responsibility to plant the seeds of change. Hill does not have a Polyannaish faith in faith, but a realistic confidence that everything is in God’s hands. It is because she is adjacent to the King that she fears no human being and believes that after winter comes the spring. Here is “Everything Is Everything,” where Hill addresses the hopelessness of urban youth and the possibility that their dreams will one day find their place.

Lauryn Hill – Everything Is Everything

Uploaded on Jun 23, 2010

Music video by Lauryn Hill performing Everything Is Everything. (C) 1998 Sony BMG Music Entertainment

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“Everything Is Everything”
Lauryn Hill, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill (1998)

Everything is everything
What is meant to be, will be
After winter, must come spring
Change, it comes eventually

I wrote these words for everyone
Who struggles in their youth
Who won’t accept deception
Instead of what is truth
It seems we lose the game
Before we even start to play
Who made these rules? We’re so confused
Easily led astray
Let me tell ya that
I philosophy
Possibly speak tongues
Beat drums, Abyssinian, street Baptist
Rap this in fine linen
From the beginning

My practice extending across the atlas
I begat this
Flippin’ in the ghetto on a dirty mattress
You can’t match this rapper/actress
More powerful than two Cleopatras
Bomb graffiti on the tomb of Nefertiti
MCs ain’t ready to take it to the Serengeti
My rhymes is heavy like the mind of Sister Betty
L. Boogie spars with stars and constellations
Then came down for a little conversation
Adjacent to the king, fear no human being
Roll with cherubims to Nassau Coliseum
Now hear this mixture
Where hip hop meets scripture
Develop a negative into a positive picture

Sometimes it seems
We’ll touch that dream
But things come slow or not at all
And the ones on top, won’t make it stop
So convinced that they might fall
Let’s love ourselves then we can’t fail
To make a better situation
Tomorrow, our seed will grow
All we need is dedication

Lauryn Hill portrays a traditional spiritual search in the most unlikely of musical forms. A point not lost on Hill herself. Accepting the Grammy she beamed, “Wow, ya know what, this is amazing. I thank you God. Thank you Father, so much. This is crazy ‘cause this is hip-hop music.” Hill is larger than life, because unlike Amos, McLachlan, Madonna, and Jewel her spiritual resources are finally outside herself.

Pop Spirituality Assessed
We began with the question what is pop spirituality? And I’ve explored three dominant themes. Its depiction of the crisis of meaning; its conscious critique of Christianity; and its celebration of paganism. I have also suggested that Lauryn Hill stands alone in the music world today speaking like the Old Testament prophetess Deborah. But more important than what is pop spirituality, is the more personal question, what does it say about us?

The popularity of pop spirituality says that many are stopping the distractions long enough to ask the deeper questions of life. In this way, this trend in pop music is a significant spiritual accomplishment. Here is an honest look at the deeper longings of the heart. Here is a critique of the unreflective life. Here is an admission of the vanity of fame, fashion, and fortune. We all live cluttered lives. Pop spirituality challenges the distractions that fill our hours and indifference that fill our hearts with the honest seeker’s question: “There must be something more?” “Hell is not populated mainly by passionate rebels,” writes philosopher Peter Kreeft, “but by nice, bland, indifferent, respectable people who simply never gave a damn.” For the Mod Squad soundtrack, Lauryn Hill wrote these lyrics: “There ain’t no excuse / ‘Cause in every situation man chooses / His own plate / His own fate / His own date at redemption / And only fools and babies get exemptions / In the hereafter school / See, we all stay for detention / And, uh, did I mention / It’s either ascension or descension / No third dimension / So pay attention.”

Paganism may offer spirituality without morality, a religion that celebrates self and sex. But even paganism—with all its talk of fairies and spirits—puts to the lie the arrogant materialism that rules out the inner realities of the soul. C. S. Lewis observed, “Christians and pagans had much more in common with each other than either has with a post-Christian. The gap between those who worship different gods is not so wide as that between those who worship and those who do not.” The discerning question is not “whether spirits,” but “which spirits.” In pop spirituality there is the recognition that we are not human beings having a spiritual experience, but spiritual beings having a human experience. The spiritual is our highest and natural environment: life lived at its fullest. As Augustine concluded after years of hard partying and intellectual seeking, “You have formed us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in you.” Pop spirituality is the outer voice of this inner search.

Celtic scholar John O’Donohue has written a new book entitled, Eternal Echoes: Exploring Our Yearning to Belong. Our heart’s longings to belong are, in fact, eternal echoes. O’Donohue said recently, “Maybe divinity is actually that secret tissue which links everything that is—matter, spirit, future, past, possibility, fact, question, quest. Maybe the divine is the great belonging.” The Apostle John says, “Perfect love drives out fear.” It is for this love that we long.

This is beautifully captured in Jewel’s song, “Absence of Fear.” Listen to her haunting lyrics and music and ask yourself this question: For what are you wanting and waiting?

“Absence of Fear”
Jewel, Spirit (1998)

Inside my skin there is this space
It twists and turns
It bleeds and aches
Inside my heart there’s an empty room
It’s waiting for lightning
It’s waiting for you

And I am wanting
And I am needing you here

Inside the absence of fear

Muscle and sinew
Velvet and stone
This vessel is haunted
It creaks and moans
My bones call to you
In their separate skin
I make myself translucent
To let you in, for

I am wanting
And I am needing you here
Inside the absence of fear

There is this hunger
This restlessness inside of me
And it knows that you’re no stranger
You’re my gravity
My hands will adore you though all darkness aim
They will lay you out in moonlight
And reinvent your name

For I am wanting you
And I am needing you here
I need you near
Inside the absence of fear

image

Questions:
1. When Dr. Seel gave this address at Chatham Hall, he played the five songs, “Leather,” “Dear God,” “Sky Fits Heaven,” “Everything is Everything,” and “Absence of Fear” so the students could listen to them with him. We recommend that you do the same, especially if you meet with friends in a small group to discuss this article—something we also highly recommend. (If you are not familiar with this music, listen to each song more than once. It would also be wise to take the time to listen to some—or preferably all—of the rest of the songs on each album.) 2. “Spirituality in Pop Music” is an example of a Christian using pop music as a window of insight into our culture. How does Dr. Seel go about accomplishing this? To what extent are you developing skill in finding windows of insight into the surrounding culture? What plans should you make? 3. Because this was a talk given to a group of college students, it is also an example of how believers can use pop culture as a point of contact with non-Christians to prompt discussion about the Big Questions of life. (What Francis Schaeffer called pre-evangelism.) How does Dr. Seel go about accomplishing this? 4. To what extent are you developing skill in finding points of contact in the surrounding culture to prompt discussion with non-Christians? What plans should you make? 5. “Show me your CD collection,” Dr. Seel says, “and you have bared your soul. Tell me what music you most identify with, what posters hang in your dorm room, and you say a lot about the state of your heart.” What does your CD collection say about you? 6. Some Christians would raise questions—or serious objections—to purchasing, listening to, or displaying some (or all) of the albums Dr. Seel mentions. What might their questions / objections consist of? What passages of Scripture might they raise? How would you respond to their questions / objections? 7. To what extent is the Christian community prepared for the interest in spirituality which is occurring on post-modern culture? What reading (or listening) might you plan to do in order to better understand this cultural shift? If you are involved in either home-schooling or Christian schooling—especially with junior- or senior-high students—to what extent is that schooling preparing your children with the discernment skills Dr. Seel models in this article? To what extent is that schooling introducing your children to this cultural shift? To what extent is that schooling teaching your children to think Christianly about pop music so they can listen to it with discernment?

Source:

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about the author
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David John Seel, Jr.
John Seel is a cultural renewal entrepreneur, film producer, and educational reformer. He is a Senior Fellow at the Work Research Foundation and adjunct professor at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Kathryn, live in Cohasset, Massachusetts. He can be reached at djsjr@earthlink.net.

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ith Everette Hatcher

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Crucial Answers from Great Minds: Francis A. Schaeffer, Part 1 of a 3-part series

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Crucial Answers from Great Minds: Francis A. Schaeffer, Part 1 of a 3-part series

compiled by Daryl E. Witmer

During this final quarter of 1998 the PROCLAMATION is featuring excerpts from the teaching of three of the most highly revered definers and defenders of the Christian faith to have lived during the 20th century. This month’s answers by the late Dr. Francis A. Schaeffer are all sourced in Dr. Schaeffer’s classic work The God Who Is There (TGWIT), ©1968 IVP. For purposes of this series, Dr. Schaeffer’s writings are presented here in interview format although there was no actual exchange.

Dr. Francis A. Schaeffer (1912-1984) was an author, thinker, and speaker. TIME magazine once called him “a missionary to the intellectuals.” In 1955 he and his wife founded The L’Abri Fellowship, a community in the Swiss Alps intended to assist sincere seekers in arriving at a sound basis for the Christian faith. Dr. Schaeffer’s books have been translated into more than 25 languages, with over 3 million in print. For further information on L’Abri, call 508-481-6490.

OUR QUESTION Isn’t it possible that all religions point to the same God – one that is just perceived in different ways?

DR. SCHAEFFER’S ANSWER “The God who is there according to the Scriptures is the personal-infinite God. There is no other god like this God. It is ridiculous to say that all religions teach the same things when they disagree at the fundamental point as to what God is like. The gods of the East are infinite by definition – the definition being ‘god is all that is’. This is the pan-everything-ism god. The gods of the West have tended to be personal but limited; such were the gods of the Greeks, Romans and Germans. But the God of the Bible, Old and New Testaments alike, is the infinite-personal God.” -TGWIT, p94, ©1968 IVP

OUR QUESTION How is God related to Himself and to His creation?

DR. SCHAEFFER’S ANSWER “On the side of God’s infinity there is a break between God and the whole of His creation. I am as separated from God in the area of His being the Creator and infinite, and I being the creature and finite, as is the atom or energy particle. I am no closer to God on this side than the machine. However, on the side of God’s personality, the break comes between man and the rest of creation.” -TGWIT, pp94-95, ©1968 IVP

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“A man can only love a God who exists and is personal and about whom he has knowledge.” -FAS _________________________________________________

OUR QUESTION What does it mean to believe on Jesus Christ, or to cast oneself on Christ?

DR. SCHAEFFER’S ANSWER “I would suggest there are four crucial aspects to be considered… [These] are not slogans to be repeated by rote and they do not have to be said in these words, but the individual must have come to a positive conclusion and affirmation concerning them, if he is to believe in the biblical sense:

1. Do you believe that God exists and that He is a personal God, and that Jesus Christ is God – remembering that we are not talking of the word or idea god, but of the infinite-personal God who is there?

2. Do you acknowledge that you are guilty in the presence of this God – remembering that we are not talking about guilt feelings, but true moral guilt?

3. Do you believe that Jesus Christ died in space and time in history on the cross, and that when He died His substitutional work of bearing God’s punishment against sin was fully accomplished and complete?

4. On the basis of God’s promises in His written communication to us, the Bible, do you (or have you) cast yourself on this Christ as your personal Saviour – not trusting in anything you yourself have ever done or ever will do?

This is what ‘believing on the Lord Jesus’ means. If a man has believed in this way he has God’s promise that he is a Christian.” -TGWIT, pp134-135, ©1968 IVP

All reprints from The God Who is There by Francis A. Schaeffer. ©1968 by L’Abri Fellowship, Switzerland. Used by permission of InterVarsity Press, P.O. Box 1400, Downers Grove, IL 60515.

Francis Schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer Whatever Happened to the Human Race (Episode 1) ABORTION

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In the film series “WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?” the arguments are presented  against abortion (Episode 1),  infanticide (Episode 2),   euthanasia (Episode 3), and then there is a discussion of the Christian versus Humanist worldview concerning the issue of “the basis for human dignity” in Episode 4 and then in the last episode a close look at the truth claims of the Bible.

Francis Schaeffer: How Should We Then Live? (Full-Length Documentary)

Francis Schaeffer: What Ever Happened to the Human Race? (Full-Length Documentary)


Part 1 on abortion runs from 00:00 to 39:50, Part 2 on Infanticide runs from 39:50 to 1:21:30, Part 3 on Youth Euthanasia runs from 1:21:30 to 1:45:40, Part 4 on the basis of human dignity runs from 1:45:40 to 2:24:45 and Part 5 on the basis of truth runs from 2:24:45 to 3:00:04

Francis Schaeffer “BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY” Whatever…HTTHR

Dr. Francis schaeffer – The flow of Materialism(from Part 4 of Whatever happened to human race?)

Dr. Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical flow of Truth & History (intro)

Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical Flow of History & Truth (1)

Dr. Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical Flow of Truth & History (part 2)

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Francis Schaeffer’s prayer for us in USA

 Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 1) ABORTION OF THE HUMAN RACE Published on Oct 6, 2012 by AdamMetropolis The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This book  really helped develop my political views […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 10 “Final Choices” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 1 0   Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode X – Final Choices 27 min FINAL CHOICES I. Authoritarianism the Only Humanistic Social Option One man or an elite giving authoritative arbitrary absolutes. A. Society is sole absolute in absence of other absolutes. B. But society has to be […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 9 “The Age of Personal Peace and Affluence” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 9 Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode IX – The Age of Personal Peace and Affluence 27 min T h e Age of Personal Peace and Afflunce I. By the Early 1960s People Were Bombarded From Every Side by Modern Man’s Humanistic Thought II. Modern Form of Humanistic Thought Leads […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 8 “The Age of Fragmentation” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 8 Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode VIII – The Age of Fragmentation 27 min I saw this film series in 1979 and it had a major impact on me. T h e Age of FRAGMENTATION I. Art As a Vehicle Of Modern Thought A. Impressionism (Monet, Renoir, Pissarro, Sisley, […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 7 “The Age of Non-Reason” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 7 Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode VII – The Age of Non Reason I am thrilled to get this film series with you. I saw it first in 1979 and it had such a big impact on me. Today’s episode is where we see modern humanist man act […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 6 “The Scientific Age” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 6 How Should We Then Live 6#1 Uploaded by NoMirrorHDDHrorriMoN on Oct 3, 2011 How Should We Then Live? Episode 6 of 12 ________ I am sharing with you a film series that I saw in 1979. In this film Francis Schaeffer asserted that was a shift in […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 5 “The Revolutionary Age” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 5 How Should We Then Live? Episode 5: The Revolutionary Age I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Francis Schaeffer noted, “Reformation Did Not Bring Perfection. But gradually on basis of biblical teaching there […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 4 “The Reformation” (Schaeffer Sundays)

Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode IV – The Reformation 27 min I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Schaeffer makes three key points concerning the Reformation: “1. Erasmian Christian humanism rejected by Farel. 2. Bible gives needed answers not only as to […]

“Schaeffer Sundays” Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 3 “The Renaissance”

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 3 “The Renaissance” Francis Schaeffer: “How Should We Then Live?” (Episode 3) THE RENAISSANCE I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Schaeffer really shows why we have so […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 2 “The Middle Ages” (Schaeffer Sundays)

  Francis Schaeffer: “How Should We Then Live?” (Episode 2) THE MIDDLE AGES I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Schaeffer points out that during this time period unfortunately we have the “Church’s deviation from early church’s teaching in regard […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 1 “The Roman Age” (Schaeffer Sundays)

Francis Schaeffer: “How Should We Then Live?” (Episode 1) THE ROMAN AGE   Today I am starting a series that really had a big impact on my life back in the 1970′s when I first saw it. There are ten parts and today is the first. Francis Schaeffer takes a look at Rome and why […]

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 5) TRUTH AND HISTORY

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 5) TRUTH AND HISTORY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis This crucial series is narrated by the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer and former Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop. Today, choices are being made that undermine human rights at their most basic level. Practices once […]

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY

The opening song at the beginning of this episode is very insightful. Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis This crucial series is narrated by the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer and former Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop. Today, choices […]

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 3) DEATH BY SOMEONE’S CHOICE

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 3) DEATH BY SOMEONE’S CHOICE Published on Oct 6, 2012 by AdamMetropolis This crucial series is narrated by the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer and former Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop. Today, choices are being made that undermine human rights at their most basic level. Practices […]

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” (Episode 2) SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” (Episode 2) SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS Published on Oct 6, 2012 by AdamMetropolis This crucial series is narrated by the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer and former Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop. Today, choices are being made that undermine human rights at their most basic level. Practices […]

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 1) ABORTION OF THE HUMAN RACE

It is not possible to know where the pro-life evangelicals are coming from unless you look at the work of the person who inspired them the most. That person was Francis Schaeffer.  I do care about economic issues but the pro-life issue is the most important to me. Several years ago Adrian Rogers (past president of […]

The following essay explores the role that Francis Schaeffer played in the rise of the pro-life movement. It examines the place of How Should We Then Live?, Whatever Happened to the Human Race?, and A Christian Manifesto in that process.

This essay below is worth the read. Schaeffer, Francis – “Francis Schaeffer and the Pro-Life Movement” [How Should We Then Live?, Whatever Happened to the Human Race?, A Christian Manifesto] Editor note: <p> </p> [The following essay explores the role that Francis Schaeffer played in the rise of the pro-life movement.  It examines the place of […]

Who was Francis Schaeffer? by Udo Middelmann

Great article on Schaeffer. Who was Dr. Francis A. Schaeffer? By Francis Schaeffer The unique contribution of Dr. Francis Schaeffer on a whole generation was the ability to communicate the truth of historic Biblical Christianity in a way that combined intellectual integrity with practical, loving care. This grew out of his extensive understanding of the Bible […]

By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Francis Schaeffer | Edit | Comments (0)

Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on the “Absurdity of Life without God!!” Part 18 (More evidence that indicates the Bible is historically true)

The Fruits of Atheism (Part 4)

Uploaded on Apr 10, 2009

Examining the Creation/Evolution Controversy in Light of Reason and Revelation

Evolutionary Hoaxes (Part 1/4)

Uploaded on Apr 10, 2009

Examining the Creation/Evolution Controversy in Light of Reason and Revelation

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Evolutionary Hoaxes (Part 2/4)

Uploaded on Apr 10, 2009

Examining the Creation/Evolution Controversy in Light of Reason and Revelation

The Bible and Science (Part 05)

Why Can’t Morals Be Grounded In Society?

Published on Aug 31, 2012

Dr William Lane Craig was invited by the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) Christian Union, London to give a lecture titled “Can we be good without God?” In this video Dr Craig answers a question about the objectivity of morality. Should we consider morals to be objective? If so, why can’t morals be “abiding” and objectively grounded in society?

The lecture formed part of the Reasonable Faith Tour in October 2011. The Tour was sponsored by Damaris Trust, UCCF and Premier Christian Radio.

The entire lecture “Can We Be Good Without God” can be viewed here: http://youtu.be/jzlEnrJfDBc

For more resources visit Dr Craig’s website: http://www.reasonablefaith.org

We welcome your comments in the Reasonable Faith forums:
http://www.reasonablefaith.org/forums/

Be sure to visit both of our Youtube channels for more videos:
youtube.com/reasonablefaithorg and youtube.com/drcraigvideos

More videos from the tour can be viewed at: http://www.youtube.com/user/Reasonabl…

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Dr. Francis schaeffer – The flow of Materialism

(Samuel Beckett example: Life is  meaningless, live in tension with reality)

(Modern man sees no hope for the future and has deluded himself by appealing to nonreason to stay sane. Look at the example of the lady tied to the railroad tracks in this above video as a example.)

Francis and Edith Schaeffer pictured below:

HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? was both a book and a film series.

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Life without God in the picture is absurdity!!!. That was the view of King Solomon when he wrote the Book of Ecclesiastes 3000 years ago and it is the view of many of the modern philosophers todayModern man has tried to come up with a lasting meaning for life without God in the picture (life under the sun), but it is not possible. Without the infinite-personal God of the Bible to reveal moral absolutes then man is left to embrace moral relativism. In a time plus chance universe man is reduced to a machine and can not find a place for values such as love. Both of Francis Schaeffer’s film series have tackled these subjects and he shows how this is reflected in the arts.

Here are some posts I have done on the series “HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? : Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 10 “Final Choices” episode 9 “The Age of Personal Peace and Affluence”episode 8 “The Age of Fragmentation”episode 7 “The Age of Non-Reason” episode 6 “The Scientific Age”  episode 5 “The Revolutionary Age” episode 4 “The Reformation” episode 3 “The Renaissance”episode 2 “The Middle Ages,”, and  episode 1 “The Roman Age,” .

In the film series “WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?” the arguments are presented  against abortion (Episode 1),  infanticide (Episode 2),   euthenasia (Episode 3), and then there is a discussion of the Christian versus Humanist worldview concerning the issue of “the basis for human dignity” in Episode 4 and then in the last episode a close look at the truth claims of the Bible.

I have discussed many subjects with my liberal friends over at the Ark Times Blog in the past and I have taken them on now on the subject of the absurdity of life without God in the picture. Most of my responses included quotes from William Lane Craig’s book THE ABSURDITY OF LIFE WITHOUT GOD.  Here is the result of one of those encounters from June of 2013:

I wrote:

DeathByInches wrote that “there’s zero proof that we do anything except cease living when we die.”

There is plenty of evidence that there is an afterlife. The Bible has lots of evidence showing it is God’s revealed word to us and this has been demonstrated over and over again because of the historical records that show that many of the prophecies of the Bible have already been fulfilled in the past. If it can be shown that the Bible is God’s inerrant word then there is an afterlife. DO WE AGREE ON THAT?

Here is a post that I am quoting from:

https://thedailyhatch.org/2013/06/24/the-ol…

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Let’s take a look at a few Bible prophecies that were fulfilled about 2500 years ago when the ancient kingdoms and cities of Babylon, Nineveh, Tyre and Edom were destroyed. The Bible makes the assertion that these entities were destroyed because they had sought to destroy the Holy Land of Israel and the people of Israel (the Jews).

Babylon Will Rule Over Judah for 70 Years
You can read the first such prophecy in Jeremiah 25:11-12. This prophecy was written sometime from 626 to about 586 BC and was not fulfilled until about 609 BC to 539 BC (approximately 50 years later, depending on your calculation)

Babylon’s Gates Will Open for Cyrus
If you read Isaiah 45:1 (written perhaps between 701 and 681 BC), you will find a prophecy that was ultimately fulfilled hundreds of years later in 539 BC.

Babylon’s Kingdom Will Be Permanently Overthrown
In Isaiah 13:19 (written between 701 and 681 BC) there exists yet another prophecy that was not fulfilled until 539 BC.

Isaiah 13:19
Babylon, the jewel of kingdoms, the glory of the Babylonians’ pride, will be overthrown by God like Sodom and Gomorrah.

Babylon Will Be Reduced to Swampland
In Isaiah 14:23 (written between 701 and 681 BC), the prophet makes yet another prediction that does not come true until 539 BC.

Isaiah 14:23
“I will turn her into a place for owls and into swampland; I will sweep her with the broom of destruction,” declares the Lord Almighty.

The Jews Will Survive Babylonian Rule and Return Home
In Jeremiah 32:36-37, (written from about 626 and 586 BC), yet another prophet makes a bold prediction that was ultimately fulfilled in 536 BC.

Nineveh Will Be Destroyed By Fire
Once again, in Nahum 3:15 (written around 614 BC) the prophet makes a prediction which ultimately did come true.

Nahum 3:15
There the fire will devour you; the sword will cut you down and, like grasshoppers, consume you…

Tyre Will Be Attacked By Many Nations
In Ezekiel 26:3 (written between 587-586 BC) the prophet predicts the attacks on Tyre that occurred in 573 BC, 332 BC, and 1291 AD.

Ezekiel 26:3
therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am against you, O Tyre, and I will bring many nations against you, like the sea casting up its waves.

The prophet said that Tyre, the Phoenician Empire’s most powerful city, would be attacked by many nations, because of its treatment of Israel. At about the time that Ezekiel delivered this prophecy, Babylon had begun a 13-year attack on Tyre’s mainland. Later, in about 332 BC, Alexander the Great conquered the island of Tyre and brought an end to the Phoenician Empire. Then, after that, Tyre later fell again under the rule of the Romans, the Crusaders and the Moslems, who destroyed the city yet again, in 1291!

Tyre’s Stones, Timber and Soil Will Be Cast Into the Sea
In a remarkable prediction, the prophet writes in Ezekiel 26:12 (written between 587-586 BC) that the stone, timber and soil of Tyre will be thrown into the sea! This was fulfilled in 333-332 BC.

Ezekiel 26:12
They will plunder your wealth and loot your merchandise; they will break down your walls and demolish your fine houses and throw your stones, timber and rubble into the sea.

The prophet said that Tyre’s stones, timber and soil would be thrown into the sea. That’s probably a fitting description of how Alexander the Great built a land bridge from the mainland to the island of Tyre when he attacked in 333-332 BC. It is believed that he took the rubble from Tyre’s mainland ruins and tossed it – stones, timber and soil – into the sea, to build the land bridge (which is still there).

The Jews Will Avenge the Edomites
In Ezekiel 25:14 (written between 593-571 BC), the prophet predicts that the Jews will eventually have revenge against the Edomites. This was not fulfilled, however for over 400 years (until approximately 100 BC)

Edom Will Be Toppled and Humbled
In Jeremiah 49:16 (written sometime from 626 to about 586 BC) the prophet predicts that Edom will be toppled. This was fulfilled in approximately 100 BC:

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The Old Testament prophecies in Isaiah 53 and Psalms 22 are powerful and as are the ones in Daniel 2, 7-11.

These are researchable. I understand how skeptics love to take pot shots at the Bible, but let us take a look at some of the facts.

Craig L. Blomberg records a number of archaeological finds that coincide with events recorded in the gospel according to John:

Archaeologists have unearthed the five porticoes of the pool of Bethesda by the Sheep Gate (John 5:2), the pool of Siloam (9:1-7), Jacob’s well at Sychar (4:5), the ‘Pavement’ (Gabbatha) where Pilate tried Jesus (19:13), and Solomon’s porch in the temple precincts (10:22-23)… Since then, discovery of an ossuary (bone-box) of a crucified man named Johanan from first-century Palestine confirms that nails were driven in his ankles, as in Christ’s; previously some skeptics thought that the Romans used only ropes to affix the legs of condemned men to their crosses. And less than five years ago, in 1990, the burial grounds of Caiaphas, the Jewish high priest, and his family were uncovered in Jerusalem. These and numerous other details create a favorable impression of the Gospel’s trustworthiness in the areas in which they can be tested.

Sir William Ramsay, famed archaeologist, began a study of Asia Minor with little regard for the book of Acts. He later wrote:

I may fairly claim to have entered on this investigation without prejudice in favor of the conclusion which I shall now seek to justify to the reader. On the contrary, I began with a mind unfavorable to it,… It did not then lie in my line of life to investigate the subject minutely; but more recently I found myself brought into contact with the Book of Acts as an authority for the topography, antiquities and society of Asia Minor. It was gradually borne upon me that in various details the narrative showed marvelous truth.

Related posts:

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 10 “Final Choices” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 1 0   Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode X – Final Choices 27 min FINAL CHOICES I. Authoritarianism the Only Humanistic Social Option One man or an elite giving authoritative arbitrary absolutes. A. Society is sole absolute in absence of other absolutes. B. But society has to be […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 9 “The Age of Personal Peace and Affluence” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 9 Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode IX – The Age of Personal Peace and Affluence 27 min T h e Age of Personal Peace and Afflunce I. By the Early 1960s People Were Bombarded From Every Side by Modern Man’s Humanistic Thought II. Modern Form of Humanistic Thought Leads […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 8 “The Age of Fragmentation” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 8 Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode VIII – The Age of Fragmentation 27 min I saw this film series in 1979 and it had a major impact on me. T h e Age of FRAGMENTATION I. Art As a Vehicle Of Modern Thought A. Impressionism (Monet, Renoir, Pissarro, Sisley, […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 7 “The Age of Non-Reason” (Schaeffer Sundays)

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Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 6 “The Scientific Age” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 6 How Should We Then Live 6#1 Uploaded by NoMirrorHDDHrorriMoN on Oct 3, 2011 How Should We Then Live? Episode 6 of 12 ________ I am sharing with you a film series that I saw in 1979. In this film Francis Schaeffer asserted that was a shift in […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 5 “The Revolutionary Age” (Schaeffer Sundays)

E P I S O D E 5 How Should We Then Live? Episode 5: The Revolutionary Age I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Francis Schaeffer noted, “Reformation Did Not Bring Perfection. But gradually on basis of biblical teaching there […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 4 “The Reformation” (Schaeffer Sundays)

Dr. Francis Schaeffer – Episode IV – The Reformation 27 min I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Schaeffer makes three key points concerning the Reformation: “1. Erasmian Christian humanism rejected by Farel. 2. Bible gives needed answers not only as to […]

“Schaeffer Sundays” Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 3 “The Renaissance”

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 3 “The Renaissance” Francis Schaeffer: “How Should We Then Live?” (Episode 3) THE RENAISSANCE I was impacted by this film series by Francis Schaeffer back in the 1970′s and I wanted to share it with you. Schaeffer really shows why we have so […]

Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 2 “The Middle Ages” (Schaeffer Sundays)

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Francis Schaeffer’s “How should we then live?” Video and outline of episode 1 “The Roman Age” (Schaeffer Sundays)

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Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 5) TRUTH AND HISTORY

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Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” (Episode 2) SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS

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Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 1) ABORTION OF THE HUMAN RACE

It is not possible to know where the pro-life evangelicals are coming from unless you look at the work of the person who inspired them the most. That person was Francis Schaeffer.  I do care about economic issues but the pro-life issue is the most important to me. Several years ago Adrian Rogers (past president of […]

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By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)