FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part  446 Responding to Dan Barker’s book LIFE DRIVEN PURPOSE (Think about abortion…Those of us who affirm a woman’s freedom to decide her own reproductive future equate a human life with personhood, seeing the earlier stages of development within a spectrum leading up to a precious baby whose arrival and existence we do cherish! My question is:WHY DO YOU, Dan, SUPPORT DEMOCRATS WHO SUPPORT THE RIGHT TO TAKE THE LIFE OF THE UNBORN BABY UP TO THE TIME OF A DAY BEFORE BIRTH? ) FEATURED ARTIST IS Pierre Alechinsky

Life Driven Purpose: How an Atheist Finds Meaning

I have read articles for years from Dan Barker, but recently I just finished the book Barker wrote entitled LIFE DRIVEN PURPOSE which was prompted by Rick Warren’s book PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE which I also read several years ago.

Dan Barker is the  Co-President of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, And co-host of Freethought Radio and co-founder of The Clergy Project.

On March 19, 2022, I got an email back from Dan Barker that said:

Thanks for the insights.

Have you read my book Life Driven Purpose? To say there is no purpose OF life is not to say there is no purpose IN life. Life is immensely meaningful when you stop looking for external purpose.

Ukraine … we’ll, we can no longer blame Russian aggression on “godless communism.” The Russian church, as far as I know, has not denounced the war.


In the next few weeks I will be discussing the book LIFE DRIVEN PURPOSE which I did enjoy reading. Here is an assertion that Barker makes that I want to discuss:

Think about abortion…Those of us who affirm a woman’s freedom to decide her own reproductive future equate a human life with personhood, seeing the earlier stages of development within a spectrum leading up to a precious baby whose arrival and existence we do cherish


Greg Koukl in his book TATICS noted:


Several years ago, while on vacation at our family retreat in northern Wisconsin, my wife and I stopped at a store in town to get some photos digitized. I noticed that the woman helping us had a large pentagram—a five-pointed star often associated with the occult—dangling from her neck. “Does that star have religious significance,” I asked, pointing to the pendant, “or is it just jewelry?” “Yes, it has religious significance,” she answered. “The five points stand for earth, wind, fire, water, and spirit.” Then she added, “I’m a pagan.”

My wife, caught off guard by the woman’s candor, couldn’t suppress a laugh, then quickly apologized. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to be rude. It’s just that I’ve never heard anyone actually admit right out that they are pagan,” she explained. She knew the term only as a negative one used by her friends yelling at their kids: “Get in here, you bunch of pagans!” “So you’re Wiccan?” I continued. She nodded. Yes, she was a witch. “It’s an earth religion,” the woman explained, “like the Native Americans. We respect all life.” “If you respect all life,” I ventured, “then I suppose you’re pro-life on the abortion issue.” She shook her head. “No, actually I’m not. I’m pro-choice.”

I was surprised. “Isn’t that an unusual position for someone in Wicca to take—I mean, since you’re committed to respecting all life?” “You’re right. It is odd,” she admitted. Then she qualified herself. “I know I could never do that,” she said, referring to abortion. “I could never kill a baby. I wouldn’t do anything to hurt someone else, because it might come back on me.” Now, this was a remarkable turn in the conversation, for two reasons. First, notice the words she used to describe abortion. By her own admission, abortion was baby killing. The phrase wasn’t a rhetorical flourish of mine; this was her own description.2 I did not have to persuade her that abortion takes the life of an innocent human being. She already knew it. What she didn’t realize, though, was that her candid admission had given me a leg up in the discussion, and I was not going to waste that opportunity. For the rest of the conversation, I abandoned the word abortion. It would be baby killing instead. Beware when rhetoric becomes a substitute for substance. You always know that a person has a weak position when he tries to accomplish with the clever use of words what argument alone cannot do.

Second, I thought it surprising that her first reason for not hurting a defenseless child was self-interest—something bad might befall her. Is that the best she can do? I thought. This comment was worth pursuing, but I ignored it and took a different tack. “Well, maybe you wouldn’t do anything to hurt a baby, but other people would,” I countered calmly. “Shouldn’t we do something to stop them from killing babies?” “I think women should have a choice,” she responded quickly, without thinking. Now, generally statements like, “Women should have a choice” are meaningless as they stand. Like the statement, “I have a right to take . . .” the claim requires an object. Choose what? Take what? No one has an open-ended right to choose. People only have the right to choose particular things. Whether anyone has a right to choose depends on what choice they have in mind. In this case, though, there was no ambiguity. The woman had already identified what the choice amounted to: baby killing, to use her words. Even though she personally respected all life, including human life, this was not a belief she was comfortable forcing on others. Women still should have the choice to kill their own babies. That was her view. She did not state her conviction in those words, of course, but that was clearly what she believed. When bizarre ideas like these are implied, do not let them lurk in the shadows. Drag them into the light with a request for clarification. Make the implicit idea explicitly obvious. That is what I did next. “Do you mean women should have the choice to kill their own babies?” “Well . . .” She thought for a moment. “I think all things should be taken into consideration on this question.” “Okay, tell me: what kind of considerations would make it alright to kill a baby?” “Incest,” she answered. I was not surprised by her response, since the line is part of the pro-choice playbook, but I don’t want you to miss something significant here.

This dear young woman was advancing her view by trotting out standard slogans in favor of abortion: women have a right to choose, all things should be taken into consideration, incest justifies abortions. Yet in this case, her slogans did not defend abortion in the abstract but explicitly promoted baby killing. The fact hadn’t registered with her, though, because her slogans were getting in the way. She was simply reciting her lines without thinking. However, you can see that from where I stood, the conversation was starting to sound a little weird. This happens all the time, of course, on both sides of the aisle. We trot out our pet slogans—whether secular ones or Christian ones—letting our catchphrases do the work that careful, thoughtful conversation should be doing instead. The habit often obscures the full significance (or ramifications, in this case) of our words. I decided to take the conversation one step farther, hoping to break the slogan spell. “Hmm. Let me see if I understand your view,” I said. “Let’s just say I had a two-year-old child standing next to me who had been conceived as a result of incest.

On your view, it seems, I should have the liberty to kill her. Is that right?” This last question stopped her in her tracks. Though the notion was clearly absurd, it was also clear that she was deeply committed to her pro-choice convictions. She had no snappy slogan to respond with and had to pause for a moment to think about the corner she had backed herself into. Finally, she said, “I’d have mixed feelings about that.” It was the best she could do. Of course, she meant this as a concession, but it was a desperately weak response. (“Killing a two-year-old? Gee, you got me on that one. I’ll have to think about it.”) “I hope so,” was all I had the heart to say. At this point, I noticed a line of customers forming behind me. I realized our conversation was interfering with her work, and my brief opportunity had come to a close. True, I hadn’t gotten to the gospel, but that was not the direction this conversation was going. This wasn’t a gospel moment but a gardening moment that involved a vital moral issue. It was time to abandon the pursuit, entrust her to the Lord, and move on. My wife and I finished our transaction, wished her well, and departed.

Today I posted an article today talking about what John MacArthur said last Sunday in a sermon about a letter he wrote to Governor Gavin Newsom about taking state money and purchasing billboards across the country to encourage people to come to California and have abortions. Here is the letter that John MacArthur wrote:

Governor Gavin Newsom September 29, 2022 1021 O Street, Suite 9000
Sacramento, CA 95814

Almighty God says in His Word, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people” (Proverbs 14:34). Scripture also teaches that it is the chief duty of any civic leader to reward those who do well and to punish evildoers (Romans 13:1–7). You have not only failed in that responsibility; you routinely turn it on its head, rewarding evildoers and punishing the righteous.
The Word of God pronounces judgment on those who call evil good and good evil (Isaiah 5:20), and yet many of your policies reflect this unholy, upside-down view of honor and morality. The diabolical effects of your worldview are evident in the statistics of California’s epidemics of crime, homelessness, sexual perversions (like homosexuality and transgenderism), and other malignant expressions of human misery that stem directly from corrupt public policy. I don’t need to itemize or elaborate on the many immoral decisions you have perpetrated against God and the people of our state, which have only exacerbated these problems. Nevertheless, my goal in writing is not to contend with your politics, but rather to plead with you to hear and heed what the Word of God says to men in your position.

“Let all kings bow down before Him, all nations serve Him” (Psalm 72:11).

“He who rules over men righteously, who rules in the fear of God, is as the light of the morning when the sun rises” (2 Samuel 23:3–4).

“It is an abomination for kings to commit wicked acts, for a throne is established on righteousness” (Proverbs 16:12).

What God said to Cyrus is a truth you should take to heart: “I am the LORD, and there is no other; besides Me there is no God. I will gird you, though you have not known Me; that men may know from the rising to the setting of the sun that there is no one besides Me. I am the LORD, and there is no other” (Isaiah 45:5–6).

In mid-September, you revealed to the entire nation how thoroughly rebellious against God you are when you sponsored billboards across America promoting the slaughter of children, whom He creates in the womb (Psalm 139:13–16; Isaiah 45:9–12). You further compounded the wickedness of that murderous campaign with a reprehensible act of gross blasphemy, quoting the very words of Jesus from Mark 12:31 as if you could somehow twist His meaning and arrogate His name in favor of butchering unborn infants. You used the name and the words of Christ to promote the credo of Molech (Leviticus 20:1–5). It would be hard to imagine a greater sacrilege.

Furthermore, you chose words from the lips of Jesus without admitting that in the same moment He gave the greatest commandment: “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30). You cannot love God as He commands while aiding in the murder of His image-bearers.

Psalm 50:16–19 speaks to people who pervert the Word of God for their own sinful ends:

But to the wicked God says,
“What right have you to recount My statutes And to take My covenant in your mouth?
For you hate discipline,
And you cast My words behind you.
When you see a thief, you are pleased with him, And you associate with adulterers.
You let your mouth loose in evil
And you harness your tongue for deceit.”

My concern, Governor Newsom, is that your own soul lies in grave, eternal peril. “Each one of us will give an account of himself to God” (Romans 14:12). One day, not very long from now, you will face that reality. Nothing is more certain. “It is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). You will stand in the presence of the Holy God who created you, who is your Judge, and He will demand that you give an account for how you have flouted His authority in your governing, and how you have twisted His own Holy Word to rationalize it. As you look over the precipice of eternity, what will your answer be? When you look ahead of you and see that nothing awaits you but eternal misery—the just punishment for your sins—what will all the clever rationalizations and political talking points avail for you then? And by then it will be too late for any remedy or redemption. “It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31).

My plea to you, Sir, is that you would not let it come to that—that you would not go to that day of judgment apart from receiving forgiveness and righteousness through faith in Christ alone. In Psalm 50, after rebuking the wicked for uttering God’s words in a profane way, Scripture makes this promise: “Now consider this, you who forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there will be none to deliver. He who offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving glorifies Me; and he who orders his way, I shall show the salvation of God” (vv. 22–23).

So there is salvation for those who repent. Christ purchased full redemption for all who will turn from wickedness, forsake their evil thoughts and actions, and trust fully in Him as Lord and Savior.

Our church, and countless Christians nationwide, are praying for your full repentance. Please respond to the gospel, forsake the path of wickedness you have pursued all your life, turn to Christ, ask for forgiveness, and use your office to advance the cause of righteousness (as is your duty) instead of undermining it (as has been your pattern).

Seek the LORD while He may be found; call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return to the LORD, and He will have compassion on him, and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon. (Isaiah 55:6–7)

Governor Newsom, “now is the acceptable time, behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2).

For the Master,
John MacArthur Pastor-Teacher

Francis Schaeffer

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Featured Artist is Pierre Alechinsky

Article Talk

Pierre Alechinsky (born 19 October 1927) is a Belgian artist. He has lived and worked in France since 1951. His work is related to tachismeabstract expressionism, and lyrical abstraction.

Pierre Alechinsky
Pierre Alechinsky (1965)
Born19 October 1927(age 94)
Schaerbeek, Belgium
Known forPaintingPrintmakingDrawing


Alechinsky was born in Schaerbeek. In 1944 he attended the l’École nationale supérieure d’Architecture et des Arts décoratifs de La Cambre, Brussels where he studied illustration techniques, printing and photography. In 1945 he discovered the work of Henri MichauxJean Dubuffet and developed a friendship with the art critic Jacques Putman.

Art careerEdit

In 1949 he joined Christian DotremontKarel AppelConstantJan Nieuwenhuys and Asger Jorn to form the art group COBRA. He participated both with the COBRA exhibitions and went to Paris to study engraving at Atelier 17 under the guidance of Stanley William Hayter in 1951.

In 1954 he had his first exhibition in Paris and started to become interested in Chinese and Japanese calligraphy. In the early 1950s he was the Paris correspondent for the Japanese journal Bokubi(the Beauty of Ink) published by Morita Shiryu of the Bokujinkai group. In 1955, encouraged by Henri Storck and Luc de Heusch, he left for Japan with his wife. He exhibited Night, 1952 (Ohara Museum of Art, Kurashiki) and made a film: Japanese Calligraphy – Christian Dotremont would write the commentary with music by André Souris.

Le Bruit de la Chute, 1974–75

By 1960 he had exhibited in London, Bern and at the Venice Biennial, and then in Pittsburgh, New York City, Amsterdam and Silkeborg as his international reputation grew.

He worked with Walasse Ting and continued to be close to Christian Dotremont. He also developed links with André Breton.

His international career continued throughout the seventies and by 1983 he became Professor of painting at the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, Paris. For the season 2018/2019 at the Vienna State Opera Pierre Alechinsky designed the large-scale picture (176 sqm) Loin d’ici as part of the exhibition series Safety Curtain, conceived by museum in progress.[1]


In 1994 he was awarded an honorary doctorate by the Free University of Brussels, and in 1995 one of his designs was used on a Belgian stamp.


His works are held in the collections of the Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium, the Tate,[2]Museum Ludwig in Cologne, the New York Museum of Modern Art,[3] the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis,[4] the Art Museum of Southeast Texasin Beaumont, Texas, the Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale, Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.[5] The main-belt asteroid 14832 Alechinsky was named in his honour in October 2000.[6]

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