Tag Archives: law

Women Lawyer’s Perspective On Legitimate Rape

Rebecca Kiessling is a family law attorney who wrote several informative posts/articles about the origin and legal problems of legitimate and illegitimate rape in abortion and rape laws. Her articles show how liberals are distorting Congressman Akin’s “use of legitimate rape” for political advantage. In fact, Akin was not claiming some rapes to be legitimate but rather that it was his understanding that the medical profession made that distinction.

Kiessling’s post addressing the unfortunate remark by Congressman Akin is titled “Another Good100% Pro-Life Candidate Flubs on the Rape Question” and her article about the legal issues related to abortion and legitimate rape is titled “woman Who Cried Wolf: The Illegitimate Rape Claim Behind Roe v Wadw,” both are worth reading.

Rutherford Institute Files Habeas Corpus Petition in Federal District Court for Phoenix Man Jailed for Home Bible Studies

PHOENIX, Ariz. — Attorneys for The Rutherford Institute have filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus in the United States District Court for the District of Arizona in the case of a Phoenix man who is serving a 60-day jail sentence and was fined more than $12,000 for using his private residential property to host a weekly Bible study, allegedly in violation of the city’s building codes. Institute attorneys are challenging the legality of Michael Salman’s imprisonment as a violation of his First Amendment and statutory rights to religious freedom and assembly, in addition to challenging the City’s assertion that if a person holds Bible studies or other forms of religious worship at his residence, he is required to comply with all local laws relating to an actual church that is open to the public. This latest filing comes after Institute attorneys petitioned the Arizona Supreme Court for habeas corpus relief, to no avail. Upon his eventual release from Lower Buckeye Jail, Salman will additionally be subjected to home arrest and random home inspections for allegedly violating his probation by continuing to hold Bible studies on his private property after being ordered not to have more than 12 people gathered on his property at any one time.

“While Michael Salman should never have been charged with a crime for simply exercising his religious beliefs on his own property, to keep him in prison while the question of his basic rights is being considered is the ultimate injustice,” said John W. Whitehead, president of The Rutherford Institute. “The continued imprisonment of Michael Salman for simply worshipping God with his family and friends on his own property demonstrates the lengths to which government bureaucrats will go in service of imposing dubious regulations on average citizens.”

Since 2005, Michael Salman and his wife Suzanne have hosted Bible studies for family and friends. However, after some neighbors allegedly complained about the gatherings, city officials got involved. In 2007, city officials ordered the Salmans to stop holding the Bible studies in their home, insisting that they were in violation of the zoning ordinance and construction code. The Salmans subsequently erected a 2,000-square-foot building in their backyard, large enough to hold approximately 40 people, which they proceeded to use for their weekly Bible studies. Attendees parked their vehicles on the Salmans’ 1.5 acre property. In June 2009, nearly a dozen police officers, accompanied by city inspectors, raided the Salmans’ property, searching for violations. Having determined that Salman’s weekly Bible studies constituted a church, city officials subsequently charged Salman with being in violation of various code regulations that apply to commercial and public buildings, including having no emergency exit signs over the doors, no handicap parking spaces or handicap ramps. Salman was later found guilty of 67 code violations. In coming to Salman’s defense, The Rutherford Institute is challenging the city’s assertion that “Bible studies are not allowed to be conducted in your residence or the barn on your property as these structures do not comply with the construction code for this use.” The Institute argues that Salman’s religious gatherings should have been treated as accessory uses under the regulations governing residential property. However, city officials claim that they can treat the Bible studies differently than family reunions, football parties or Boy Scouts solely because they are “religious worship.”

St. Valentine

By Rev. Dallas Henry

We don’t usually think of Valentine’s Day as an explicitly Christian holiday. Other major holidays have obvious Christian origins: Christmas (Christ’s incarnation) and Easter (Christ’s resurrection), but Valentine’s Day? It’s true that Valentine’s Day is not connected with an event in the life of our Lord like Christmas and Easter are, but Valentine’s Day does have some intriguing Christian roots. Along with most holidays, Valentine’s Day has suffered from its share of commercialization and confusion, yet the moving story of the original Valentine’s Day is worth remembering.

After about 1,700 years of history, it’s kind of hard to know exactly who St. Valentine was and what he did. The story is embedded somewhere in the depths of history, never to be known until we get to heaven. What follows may be part tradition and part truth, but completely fascinating.

The year was 270. The Roman Empire was engaged in a desperate attempt to retain the Pax Romana that had endured for centuries. Christianity was active during the 3rd century. Although Christ had died over two centuries prior, Christians were eagerly propagating their faith and churches were springing up everywhere. These early centuries of the church were the times of the great apologists such as Clement, Ignatius, Origen, Polycarp, Athanasius, and Chrysostom. But the 3rd century was also the time of the Christian martyrs. Prior to Constantine, the empire was not friendly to Christianity – not at all. Claudius, the reigning emperor of the time, was a warlord, intent only upon preserving his empire and routing out his enemies. Christianity was not on his “like” list. His primary interests were military, and he would stoop to nothing to ensure that his mighty army remained loyal to him.

It was Claudius’s grip on the military that led him to install a very foolish policy empire-wide. Claudius had a problem on his hands when it came to his army. He discovered that his men actually preferred to get married and stay home with their wives and families rather than risk their lives and sacrifice for their country! Military recruiting was suffering because of the affection between man and wife. Love was getting in the way of patriotism! Claudius would have none of it. Being the man with the big stick, he could make laws and enforce them, too.

So he did. Claudius passed a law forbidding marriage. Obviously, this was an outrage but he was serious.

Living in this anti-Christian and anti-marriage climate, was Valentine. Valentine was a Christian priest in Rome. He knew from the Bible that marriage was good and honored by God. He knew that marriage was lawful according to the Christian faith, so he took it upon himself to perform Christian marriages -contrary to the law. As a priest, he performed secret marriages for couples who desired to be married bravely defying the anti-marriage edict. It wasn’t just marriages that Valentine was working on. He was also trying to protect persecuted Christians who were being chased down and hunted by the aggressive Roman leaders. Christians knew that they could flee to Valentine to find protection.

Valentine was taking a huge risk in performing marriages in secret. Not only was it absolutely forbidden to marry or to perform marriages, but it was also a criminal offense to aid or abet Christians – especially ones whom the Roman Empire had on their hit list!

Valentine was enmeshed in what the Roman Empire considered high treason and traitorous activity. Although he was being loyal to his faith, he was flying in the face of Roman law.

One story reported that one evening he was performing a wedding at his church with the doors locked, no lights burning, and all speaking done in whispers. The soldiers first knocked on the doors and eventually broke them down. He quickly finished his last wedding, sent the new couple fleeing out the side door just as the soldiers came running down the aisle to apprehend him.

The Roman government locked him up in prison. Now, Valentine – protector of Christians and performer of marriages – was himself suffering for his love and devotion to God.

It got worse. Valentine, true to his bold character, tried to convert Emperor Claudius to Christianity. That was just too much. Claudius demanded that Valentine recant his faith and submit to the cruel and godless tyranny of Rome. Valentine staunchly refused. Then Claudius condemned him to torture and death.

While in prison St. Valentine was popular with the young people. One of these young people was the daughter of the prison guard. Her father allowed her to visit Valentine in the cell. Sometimes they would sit and talk for hours. She was an encouragement to him. She agreed that Valentine did the right thing by ignoring the Emperor and going ahead with the secret marriages. She and others would write Valentine little notes. On the day he was to die, February 14, 269 A.D., he left a little note thanking her for her friendship and loyalty and signed it, “Love from your Valentine.” The first “Valentine” card.

Although the story of Valentine’s Day is shrouded in mystery, buried in tradition, and (thanks to commercialism) stripped of its significance, we can bring some of the truth back. The truth is, love can’t be squelched, outlawed, or stamped out. The significance of Valentine’s life was not only that he defended love and romance and performed secret marriages. He chose to obey God rather than man. Remembering St. Valentine today, is besmirched by cupids, chocolate, and candlelit dinners – a day founded upon the life of a martyr. Valentine died a bloody death, beaten and beheaded. The truth is, Valentine was in love with his Savior, Jesus Christ. Love for Jesus trumped his love of self. Valentine nobly gave his life for the God he loved.

That is true love. But true love is deeper still. It goes beyond our love for God. I John 4:10; “In this is love, not that we have loved God but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” John 3:16 defines love: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”

Valentine’s Day is all about love.

The greatest love of all is that which sent Jesus to a cross. That kind of love goes beyond mere comfortable Christian existence. That is the kind of love that is willing to take risks, to sacrifice everything, and even to give our lives, if necessary, for Him who loved us.

God, please help your Church to love like that.

This article was first published in Leadership Post, a publication by Rev Dallas Henry.

Hungary Defies Critics With New Family Law

By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.

(New York – C-FAM) Hungarian leaders have passed a law protecting the traditional family, defying ongoing criticism that their new constitution would curtail abortion and homosexuality.

The new law says the family, based upon marriage of a man and a woman whose mission is fulfilled by raising children, is an “autonomous community…established before the emergence of law and the State” and that the State must respect it as a matter of national survival. It says “Embryonic and foetal life shall be entitled to protection and respect from the moment of conception,” and the state should encourage “homely circumstances” for child care. It obliges the media to respect marriage and parenting and assigns parents, rather than the State, primary responsibility for protecting the rights of the child. The law enumerates responsibilities for minors, including respect and care for elderly parents.

The purpose of the law is “to create a predictable and safe regulatory environment for family protection and the promotion of family welfare, and to enforce the Fundamental Law,” the nation’s new constitution, which came into force on January 1st and was passed by a vote of 262-44 last April.

The Fundamental Law nullified Hungary’s communist-era constitution and dates its democracy from the revolution against the Soviet Union in 1956 and Soviet collapse in 1990. Hungary is the last Central European nation to pass a post-communist constitution.

The constitution calls for the protection of life from conception and bans torture, human trafficking, eugenics, and human cloning. It recognizes marriage as the “conjugal union of a man and a woman.”

Amnesty International said the article protecting life from conception could “undermine the rights of women and girls” that are “enshrined in several treaties signed and ratified by the Republic of Hungary such as the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).” The group said the article defining marriage “may pave the way to the introduction of an explicit ban on same-sex marriages which contravenes international and European anti-discrimination standards…enshrined by Article 23 of the ICCPR [the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights].”

Human Rights Watch likewise invoked UN human rights treaties in a letter urging Hungary’s president to “amend the constitution to ensure respect for women’s reproductive rights.” The human rights goliath expressed concern that the non-discrimination clause for “race, color, sex, disability, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, wealth, birth or any other circumstance whatsoever” excludes reference to sexual orientation or gender identity which they said was guaranteed in the ICCPR.

International legal experts have dismissed the claims of the human rights groups saying Hungary has the right to pass a constitution without interference. They point out that no UN treaty even mentions abortion, sexual orientation, or gender identity and that the UN General Assembly has never accepted such redefinitions.

European legal expert Roger Kiska sees the new Hungarian laws as part of a growing trend among European states to push back at such interpretations and protect human life and the family. Former US ambassador to Hungary Mark Palmer said the expulsion of Hungary from the EU is “now no longer unthinkable,” but Hungarian analyst Julia Lakatos downplayed the controversy, telling CSMonitor, “Much of the criticism from abroad is exaggerated.”

Susan Yoshihara is Senior Vice President for Research at the Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute (C-FAM). This article first appeared in the Friday Fax, an internet report published weekly by C-FAM, a New York and Washington DC-based research institute (http://www.c-fam.org/). This article appears with permission.

The Ten Commandments: Ancient and Modern

Western civilization and its legal heritage was in part built upon the solid rock of Ten Commandments. These ten laws were first etched into a tablet of stone by the God. After Moses had broke them, God made Moses chisel those laws into another set of stone tablets, according to the Bible (see chapter 20 of Exodus and 5 of Dueteronomy).

Nearly all of the writings that informed our nations founding refered to the Ten Commandments are foundation of all law. Even Blackstone’s Commentary on English Common Law stated the same. Some readers may not know that the Commentary was among the primary legal sources for all American lawyers before and after the Revolution.

Since the beginning of the 20th Century, many changes have occurred. Changes of laws, beliefs, values and practices have reciprocated in creating a new version of the Ten Commandments.

In a recent article, Dallas Henry delineated this modern version of Ten Commandments that American citizens are expected to live. The modern Ten Commandments are as follows:

Commandment #1: “Thou shalt love thyself with all thy heart and all thy mind and with all thy soul and with all thy strength.” We can all remember the old mantras, “To thine own self, be true.” “Look out for #1.”

Commandment #2: “Let us recognize the good in all religions.” Being that our 21st century key words are diversity, plurality and acceptance, the second commandment is politically correct.

Commandment #3: “Thou shalt revere the highly honored name of Darwin.

Commandment #4: “ Honor your sexuality. Flaunt thy sensual self. Promote thy perversions and protect them. Strut thy seductiveness. Propagate thy perversity. Take thy degeneracy public (television, radio, movies). Show the world that thou art perverse and proud of it. And hate and revile those who dare to call your perversity sin.”

Commandment #5: “Honor thy mother earth . . . Thou shalt eat no meat, i.e., no beef, no wild game, no fowl or fish”

Commandment #6: “Thou shalt not kill animals, birds or fish. Thou shalt not execute criminals, including robbers, rapists, murderers, kidnappers or terrorists. Only shalt thou kill human embryos and babies in that they have committed the horrific crime of being an inconvenience to thy lifestyle. Babies only shalt thou kill and human embryos are to be sacrificed on the sacred altar of scientific research.”

Commandment #7: “Thou shalt not forbid marriage to anyone”

Commandments #8 and #9: “Thou shalt not condemn. Who are you to condemn another for his lifestyle or sexual preferences? Thou shalt not criticize or judge. Let’s make it inclusive: Thou shalt tolerate everything except Bible believing Christianity. That cannot be tolerated because it’s narrow minded and bigoted. Those Bible believers are totally unacceptable and are not to be condoned.”

Commandment #10: “Thou shalt recognize no absolute truth.” Empiricism, naturalism, and science has consistnently proven konwledge is changeable and, therefore, truth is relative to facts.

This blogger is of the opinion that Henry’s view is too narrow. The scope of these “politically correct” commandments, as he calls them, encompass all nations and cultures. These laws have been given by which all global citizens are to live. The Creator of universe may not have commanded them but the global powers that be certainly have.

To read Dallas Henry’s commentary on both sets of 10 Commandments, click here.

President Obama and DOMA: Why Obama’s Position is Unconstitutional

The Justice Department announced last month that it would no longer defend the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) because the president and Attorney General Eric Holder now believe the law is unconstitutional.
“After careful consideration, including review of a recommendation from me, the President of the United States has made the determination that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act…as applied to same-sex couples who are legally married under state law, violates the equal protection component of the Fifth Amendment,” Holder wrote in a letter to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on February 23. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Obama believes DOMA is “unnecessary and unfair.”

But as CNSNews.com reported, critics of Obama’s decision said the president of the United States, who is sworn to faithfully execute the law, doesn’t get to pick and choose which laws to defend.

Three things should be noted about the President’s justification for considering DOMA unconstitutional.

First, the Fifth Amendment has no “equal under the law” clause, but the Fourteenth Amendment does.

Second, he claims implies state laws made after the passage of DOMA effectual negate it as law rather than prior law (DOMA) negating laws of states. On the face of it, the President’s action seems legitimate because federal law is supposed to conform to the limits of the Constitution, which leaves states their 10th Amendment right to determine on matters not addressed by the Supreme Law. Most marriage issues do apply here. But, again, the justification is based on the Fifth Amendment or maybe the Fourteenth.

Third, however, is the fact that marriage comes under the rubric of human sexual behavior. Men and women enter into marriage covenants long before the Constitution existed. It is a moral act of agreement in which men with women contract to much more than sexual activity, but the basis of the covenant relationship is nevertheless sexual.

As the basis of the Constitutional compact is, so is the basis of marriage. Natural law may be defined as what is self-evidently true to human nature on the basis of reason and revealed law. Critics may disagree with the last two words, but the founders who authored and accepted by vote America’s legal definition of nationhood would agree. Be that as it may, it extremely difficult to reason from human nature as it exists to acceptance of homosexual behavior or marriage of homosexuals as lawful behavior. Some medical scientists have pointed the biological and medical difficulties with it. Simply put, sex between males and females is obvious natural behavior with the benefit of keeping the human race from extinction–even atheistic evolutionists would have to agree. Homosexual behavior is at best an aberration of natural human behavior.

“Equality under the law clause of the 14th Amendment” does not provide protection for aberrant behaviors. It is supposed to guarantee the same protections against discrimination based on natural characteristics like skin color, sex, nationality, and the like. Those characteristics are inherent to human nature. It is supposed to guarantee that common laws are equally applied to all citizens, and in breaking those laws, the same equality is to be applied. That is except for the few exempted from those laws like foreign ambassadors, heads of state, Presidents, and some times the rich.

Let’s not forget, the gay community possess an average income significantly above average John and Jane American.

Even with all of their considerable buying power, the Democratic Party President cannot make the unnatural natural and unconstitutional constitutional.

Christmas and World Peace

By Daniel Downs

“Blessed are the peacemakers” (Matthew 5:12)

During the days of Jesus, Augustus Caesar was the acclaimed prince of peace. This praise was without critical comment. Peace in the Roman Empire was not won by reasoned negotiation but by the power of the sword. In the book of Revelation, John sees a rider on a white horse. The rider went conquering and to conquer. This vision describes Caesar, Alexander the Great, Napoleon, and many other leaders whose peace was packaged for subjugated peoples in terms of existence. Peace meant “my way or else.” A more accurate way of putting it would be don’t make me come back to deal with rebellion or with disruption of the flow of taxes or trade. Maintain law and order as well as tax payments and all will be well. That was the peace of Pax Romana.

In our modern Pax Americanus, the substance behind rhetoric of world peace is often about conflict over trade and disputes about the flow of goods like wheat, oil, and weapons. It is true that concern about the health and well-being of others is debated and money spent to resolve perceived problems. Yet, such concerns remain secondary to the kind of peace necessary for the continued growth in the global economy.

The issue of Middle East peace is one example. The on-going conflict between Israel, Palestinians, and Arabs may be religious and territorial in nature but our contemporary Caesars see the problem as an unnecessary disruption to the flow of goods regionally and globally. The not-so-powerful see the achievement of peace in the Middle East as an end to poverty among Palestinians. Others see poor Palestinians as one weapon of war against the continued existence of the Zionist state, which also means Arabs could have ended Palestinian poverty long ago.

In Pax Americana, liberal special interest groups often criticize Christian conservatives for focusing on politics rather than on the moral reform of individuals in society. Although valid to a point, the criticism is based on the belief that religion is not relevant to public policy affecting all aspects of daily life. The source of this belief is humanism or enlightenment rationalism exemplified by French intellectuals. This view was not held by most early Americans, which is one reason the liberal belief is erroneous. Because religion is both a world view encompassing life now and hereafter as well as a means to resolving problems, religion is crucial to politics.

In fact, religion is likely the only source to genuine peace.

Some will find such as statement outrageous because they see religion as one of the primary sources of violent human abuses, global conflicts, and war. Yet, the same can be said of secularists who have followed Marx such as communist leaders around the world. To the credit of secular statists, hundreds of millions of citizens as well as enemies have been tortured, maimed, and killed.

The mantra of secularists has been “you cannot legislate morality,” which by the way is the basis of peace. The opposite was held by the founders who regarded legislating immorality as an anti-law act. America’s inheritance of the rule of law concept goes back at least to the biblical accounts of the legal and consensus covenant between God and Israel and the development of their law codes and governing institutions. These in turn influenced the development of constitutional law in the American colonies.

The American experiment was the application of previous centuries of the Protestant (Puritan) struggle for religious freedom constituted by culture and law. The testimony of history is religion and bureaucratic power always result in human injustice, institutional led violence, and war. As noted above, the problem is not limited to religion but to ideologies instituted through power of governance. As the horrible news reported daily by the media proves, Calvinist-Puritans are still right about inherent depravity of humanity. It was this self-evident truth that led to the development of written legal compacts of which the US Constitution is one part and contract laws.

As the early Americans understood, peace is achieved by doing what is right according to the law of God and of nature. When laws, public policy, and behavior conform to this law, the result has to be peace. Only then will there be peace on earth and perpetual good will toward men, women, boys, and girls. International terrorism, wars, domestic violence, poverty, greed, envy, revenge, and the like will subside. Goods and services naturally will flow unhindered and without imperialist manipulations. Populations will control themselves without a death culture operated by paternal elitists.

That is exactly why the human race requires salvation by the only real prince of peace—Jesus Christ. Jesus entered the world on a peace mission. Many then and now see his death as mission failure. However, his death accomplished terms of reconciliation between God and humanity that know one else could achieve. His death paid the eternal price required to satisfy God’s justice concerning all of our moral crimes. He was raised from death in order to officiate over its implementation for every human. By accepting God terms of peace, each and all people will learn the way of peace. That is the reason Jesus commissioned his apostles to make disciples of all nations. Only then could there possibly be lasting peace on earth.

Many religions pursue peace as at least one, if not, the primary goal. However, most religious never really obtain peace with God. They miss the requirements of divine justice by only focusing on the necessary behaviors for right standing under God’s rightful rule. The problem is God cannot acquit (forgive) moral crimes committed any more than human judges do. The penalty for crimes committed must be paid. Good behavior before or after a moral crime is not sufficient to pay for the crime committed against God’s law. As the prophets and apostles proclaimed, “The soul that sins it shall die.” That is the price Jesus paid. His lordship guarantees the resources necessary to live right before God and thereby achieve the peace we all desire. Peace with God–the starting point to world peace.

To those who seek peace, Merry Christmas.

9/11, Meaning of Its Message

Some claim 9/11 has been politicized by the controversies about Pastor Terry Jones’s radical attention getting “Burn a Koran Day” and the Ground Zero mosque plans. Yet, 9/11 would be meaningless without being political. The message of those Middle East Jihadists endures through the images, protests, and commemorations of 9/11.

Yes, America honors their heroes who sacrificed their lives to save others. We remember the innocent victims who died at Ground Zero. It is part of the message produced by those Islamic radicals who attacked America.

Since that terrible day, September 11, 2001, American officials have obscured that message. At first, those so-called terrorists were accused to attempting to destroy our way of life. They presumably hated the freedoms of our open society. We also were told that those terrorists attempted to destroy important American landmarks. Apparently, public officials wanted to deflect our attention from the fact that those landmarks were all political institutions with global influence on Middle East governance and culture. Housed in the Twin Towers was government or quasi-governmental and international economic organizations. Surely, the Pentagon is more than an historical landmark. Yet, Al-Qaeda’s stated goal was to severely impede the U.S. government’s controlling influence in the Middle East. They came close to succeeding.

Consequently, Congress declared war on all terrorism. Being fair-minded egalitarians, most abhored the idea of only fighting against Islamic terrorists. That would be profiling. Therefore, all potential terrorists or radicals must be opposed even right wing Christian groups.

Whether America’s war on terror actually is comparable to the cold war with Russia, or the war on drugs, poverty, obesity, middle class lack, or the like is still uncertain. What is certain, like the cold war, America’s war on terror will be waged until politicians and bureaucrats discover Islamic radicalism can no longer justify their policy agendas like the New World Order many hoped Obama could achieve.

Many Americans have missed another very important part of the message sent by those Muslims who piloted their hijacked Boeing 747s into Twin Towers and the Pentagon. We have been told by politicians, government officials, Muslim leaders, other religious leaders, and the media that Islam is a religion of peace. Those radical terrorists do not represent true Islam, and many Americans believe them except those who have studied the Islam.

In the excellent article titled What is radical Islam?, the author, who has studied Islam for 8 years, persuasively argues that “radical Islam” does not exist. The words and acts of so-called terrorists, like members of Al Qaeda, demonstrate their strict adherence to the Quran, Hadith, and Shariah. Islamic moderates are those who are not faithful to Islam. It is no different from saying liberal Christians who defy certain parts of the Bible and doctrines are moderates while those who are truly faithful are radical fundamentalists.

As pointed out by the author of What is radical Islam, there is no such thing as moderate Islam and radical Islam.

“[T]he problem is that Islam is radical. It is not that there is a separate religion called ‘radical Islam’, but that the religion of Islam has many components that are considered radical/unacceptable/violent by modern societies…. To make Islam moderate, we would have to expurgate many verses (and entire chapters, such as that on raping female captives without impregnating them, so that their slave price does not fall) from the Kuran and Hadith.”

The author also wrote that those who claim radicals like Bin Laden are hijacking Islam are obscuring the facts. They are in fact seeking to hide from the scrutiny of Americans and others in western cultures.

“Every single action [Bin Laden] has done is justified by the Kuran and Hadith, and he has taken great pains to provide the verses that justify his actions. Not only that, for centuries, people like that were hailed as Ghazis (holy warriors) within Islam. It is not for nothing that in the muslim world, a majority of people hail him as a hero. It is only when you are trying to hide from the scrutiny of the west that you say he has “hijacked Islam.” He is merely a person who follows Islam to the word. He is, in many ways, a true muslim. In numerous Hadith, Muhammed says that the best muslim is not one who fasts and prays, but who gets on his horse and fights against infidels (especially polytheists) for the spread of Islam. That is what Bin Laden is doing. What about the innocent women and children he kills? Guess what – the Hadith emphatically state that it is perfectly alright to kill the women and children of polytheists. Nothing Bin Laden does is outside the Kuran and Hadith. He is not a “radical” muslim, he is merely a practising muslim!”

The meaning of 9/11 is that Islam’s true believers will fight the perceived oppression and corruption of the American empire and its leaders. Of course, it is the influence of secularism assisted by American business on their cultures; our government’s hindrance to their eliminating Israeli governance in Palestine; and America’s not-so-righteous military launching attacks on fellow Muslim countries from their homelands that forms their perceptions. That is why they attacked our national landmarks. That is why some respond to our political and military victories by retorting, “Kill Americans (read, infidels) anywhere you find them.”

The message that Islam is a religion of peace reveals a serious internal conflict within both America and Islam. It is a pervasive type cognitive dissonance about truth and its public expression. The culture war between conservatives and progressives, moderates and fundamentalists, religious fanatics and secularists is one by-product and the so-called war against terrorism is another.

Although denied by secularists, America was founded by Christians whose religious text does not justify violence and injustice. Judaism influenced the formation of America ideas as well. Although some Torah laws and punishments seem abusive to moderns, only in the Promised Land–Israel–is violence permitted in the due process of upholding law. Because the vision of Islam encompasses the conversion of the world, its justifications of violence and abuse make it dangerous. Nevertheless, as long as criminal laws exist and are strictly enforced, Americans can expect moderation from adherents of American Islam and all others.

But, watch out for those who would make American law conform to Islam’s Sharia.

A postscript to “9/11, Meaning of Its Message”

In the above post, I wrote the following:

America was founded by Christians whose religious text does not justify violence and injustice. Judaism influenced the formation of America’s ideals as well. Although some Torah laws and punishments seem abusive to moderns, only in the Promised Land–Israel–is violence permitted in the due process of upholding law. Because the vision of Islam encompasses the conversion of the world, its justifications of violence and abuse make it dangerous. Nevertheless, as long as criminal laws exist and are strictly enforced, Americans can expect moderation from adherents of American Islam and all others.

It should have been noted that even though the New Testament does not justify violence and injustice the Christianity has condoned similar atrocities as Muslim have been accused. The Church inherited the Roman Empire from the successors of Constatine, who made Christianity the religion of the empire. It would not be difficult to find in Canon law abhorent commands similar to those found in the sacred texts of Islam. The same can be said of the oral Torah if the Talmud is regarded as its recorded form. Many do. Yet, researchers have found some pretty terrible laws or interpretations of laws in that oral law.

All of which should remind Americans of the founders’ wisdom of found in the principles and text of their legal documents like the Declaration of Independence. Their history as citizens under the rule of the British Empire made them conclude that the separation of institutional powers of church and its governance and of civil governance was the only way for liberty and faith to prosper. They were of the view that all institutional authority tends to moral corruption and depotism. The religious Romans proved it. The Israelite kings proved it. The Catholic Church proved it. The British monarchs and Parliment proved it. The Anglican Church proved it. Islam has also proved it.

I recently read an article by a “liberal” Saudi Arabian author. He came to the conclusion that the problem with religion is that all believers regard their religion as superior to all others. Becauser of this, all conflicts are the result of this sense of superiority. His remedy is the elimination of all religion. However, some scholars writing about the history of the Separation of Church and State have shown that secularists are as religious as others regarding their secular beliefs. Moreover, the socialist version of secularism is just as dangerous as religious fundamentalism. Its destructiveness was proved by the millions of citizens killed by the USSR, China, Cuba, and other secular governments. The millions of aborted children proves secular America is not really different. The only difference is that America’s violence is justified as a private property right for convenience sake. Violence perpetrated by the above was to silence critical political dissent and disobedience.

The problem will never resolve until humanity’s behavior conforms the one who created them in His image. Tolerance will cease to exist from our vocabulary because the law of justice, morality, peace, and love will have become the unshakeable lifestyle of all. Only God could possibly accomplish such a miracle. Because the human condiition is one of self interest seeking, the end of human peace efforts always ends up resembling the peace won by the Caesars. That is what the end time scenarios of prophecy techers seem to be about. That is the expressed experience of Israelis under Oslo. I don’t know, but maybe Iraqis and Afghanistanis regard American peace the same way.

Nevertheless, Jesus said, “Blessed are those who keep trying.” (Mt. 5:3-20)

Is Jesus the only way to God?

In the post titled “Jesus & Co,” I explained (albeit, inadequately) what Jesus meant by the following passage found in the 14th chapter of John’s gospel:

“If you guys really knew me you would have known my Father also. So look here guys. You now know Him, and have seen Him.” (v.7)

I interpreted that verse to mean Jesus’ appearance, his behavior, and his work perfectly revealed God’s presence, character, and will toward humanity. Jesus assured his followers they would do likewise. Jesus based his expectations on their abiding love of God, which would perpetually motivate them to live a kingdom lifestyle. This lifestyle is characterized by behavior exemplifying the commandments of God.

In this final post on John subject, I will attempt to explain what Jesus meant by the verse prior to the one above, which is:

“I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through me.”

Jesus’ bold statement has been a point of contention between theologians generally and between other religious faiths in particular. Most interpret it to mean Jesus is the one and only way to an afterlife in heaven with God. As such, most seem to regard it as both exclusivist and arrogant. This position of the offended seems to originate with the idea that Christianity claims that only believers in the gospel of Jesus can know God, can be accepted by God, and thus have eternal life with God.

The Christian view affirms the exclusiveness of Jesus’ statement. They have been guilty of implying that only believers in Jesus could possibly have any relationship whatsoever with God, and consequently, non-believers can not know God. This can not be true because the founders of most of the major world religions were visited by God, and the founders obviously responded positively to God. However, this does not necessarily mean those founders or their followers were or are redeemed by God. I will deal with this more later. Based on the exclusive claim of Christ, Christianity rightly claims that only those who put their faith in Jesus Christ can be assured of a place in heaven hereafter.

The basis of this audacious claim of Jesus, his apostles, and Christianity is that good works cannot and does not negate the dessert of justice for crimes (sins) committed against the laws of God.

In previous posts, it was shown that the human form resembles God’s appearance. Beyond physical appearance, we also have the capacity to imitate the moral, intellectual and creative characteristics of God. God’s issue with humanity is not appearances but with behavior. It is the our tendency practice behaviors unlike God. It is human immorality that offends God. More specifically, it is our moral crimes against the laws that is the problem.

Just as our legal system of justice–an imperfect reflection of divine justice–does not forgive people for murder, rape, abuse, oppress, steal, lie under oath, and similar criminal behaviors, neither does God. Our courts are supposed to punish crimes. That is because the rest of society must be protected from the potential harm of same criminals. So it is with the justice of God.

God is neither tolerant nor forgiving towards moral crime. The punishment for moral crime is death. As the Hebrew prophet Ezekiel wrote, “The soul that sins shall die” (Eze. 18:4). Writing to believers in Rome, Jesus’ apostle reaffirmed this truth when he stated, “The wages of sin is death” (Rom. 6:23). From Adam to moderns, moral crimes results in separation of mutually beneficial and productive relationships. The ultimate alienation and divorce is our separation from our Creator and benefactor, God. Therefore, no one in any religion or in no religion can be acquitted of that sentence against their sins no matter how many good works they may practice. Because committing one sin is the same as violating all moral laws, any sin results in the same way–death.

Here is a clarifying example: Joe Smoozolli brutally murders John Gonn. It was a momentary act of rage brought on my John’s harassment. Joe moves out of state and changed his to Mark de Seet. Yes, Joe was ethnically French. All of this took place twenty years ago. Since then, Joe (aka Mark) has lived a exemplary life of good charitable citizenship and business success. However, Jane Austom and her husband Eddy runs into Joe while on vacation. They remember that the police believed Joe had killed John Gonn; so they call the police. Joe is arrested the next day. A month later, he stands trial for John’s murder. The evidence against Joe is overwhelming. No jury could possibly find him not guilty. Nevertheless, a number people believe Joe should be forgiven because of his good behavior, good deeds, charitable giving, and business success. Still, Joe is guilty of murdering John. The judge cannot forgive Joe, and the jury cannot be merciful towards him because of his exemplary life. All evidence proves beyond a reasonable doubt that Joe murdered John. The only possible verdict is guilty. Because the crime took place in Texas, the penalty is death.

Something very usual occurs during Joe’s sentencing. A business associate who also has a reputation for an exemplary life of kindness and charity and for good social works asks the court to allow himself to be executed instead of Joe. This man justifies his request on grounds that Joe has lived a humble and repentant live and because of his 4 children and wife need him. On the other hand, this man has no family needing his care and provision. His business will be sold to another. He is ready to face eternity because he is certain that he is in good standing with God. Joe, however, is not.

The only way God will accept Joe’s repentance; the only reason Joe will make it to heaven is if Joe finds out how his business associate stands accepted before God.

The answer is the sinless man Jesus was punish for the moral crimes committed by Joe, and Joe represents every human that has lived or will ever live. Because neither good works nor the death of animals in place of guilty humans are sufficient to fully satisfy divine justice, only a sinless man willing to suffer the penalty for the moral crimes of others could possibly do so. Jesus is the only person to have accomplish it. That is the claim of Jesus above: “I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through me.”

By Daniel Downs