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Archive for April, 2007

reFocus Conference this year featuring John Piper. Others include J.I Packer, Bruce Ware, Mark Driscoll, etc.

 

Video of,

 

John Piper – The Reason for Our Creation

John Piper – The Nature of Our Depravity

John Piper – The Nature Of Saving Faith

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Dr. Bruce Ware (Professor of Christian Theology at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) is the speaker for the Spring Resurgence Conference.

The conference provides both video and audio lectures. Q&A follows after each lecture. Lecture notes are also available. Scroll down of each page for the download.

Uncertain Hands of God and Men: Providence in Process Thought and Open Theism

Independent Hands of God and Men: Providence in Classic Arminianism

Coordinated Hands of God and Men: Providence in the Reformed Tradition

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A new video of the interesting and often humorous conversation between CJ Mahaney, Mark Dever, Ligon Duncan and Al Mohler. It has reflections of the T4G 2006 conference and also the future T4G 2008 conference.

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I’ve sat on this and thought about it, and revised it before I posted this here…

I’ve had various inquiry in private messages, comments and also people asking me about whether the rights to bear arm make sense in light of Virginia Tech shooting. This is what this entry is about.

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1.) Protecting your life–Who’s responsibility is it?

That’s something that needs to be taken into consideration: Is it ultimately your responsibility or someone else’s?

Is your life worth protecting? If so, whose responsibility is it to protect it? If you believe that it is the police’s, not only are you wrong — since the courts universally rule that they have no legal obligation to do so — but you face some difficult moral quandaries. How can you rightfully ask another human being to risk his life to protect yours, when you will assume no responsibility yourself? Because that is his job and we pay him to do it? Because your life is of incalculable value, but his is only worth the $30,000 salary we pay him? If you believe it reprehensible to possess the means and will to use lethal force to repel a criminal assault, how can you call upon another to do so for you?

Do you believe that you are forbidden to protect yourself because the police are better qualified to protect you, because they know what they are doing but you’re a rank amateur? Put aside that this is equivalent to believing that only concert pianists may play the piano and only professional athletes may play sports. What exactly are these special qualities possessed only by the police and beyond the rest of us mere mortals?

(SOURCE: http://golubski.blogspot.com/2007/04/bleating-for-security.html)

What about the police? Where do they fit in?

070416shooting_cnn.jpg

most people readily believe that the existence of the police relieves them of the responsibility to take full measures to protect themselves. The police, however, are not personal bodyguards. Rather, they act as a general deterrent to crime, both by their presence and by apprehending criminals after the fact. As numerous courts have held, they have no legal obligation to protect anyone in particular. You cannot sue them for failing to prevent you from being the victim of a crime.

If its your ultimate responsibility, and not that of the police to protect your own life, what tools and means then do you have, to protect yourself and especially of someone who want to take your life?

2.) Does Gun Control necessarily save lives?

England has one of the most toughest gun laws, yet:

“While Britain has some of the toughest firearms laws in the world, the recent spate of gun murders in London has highlighted a disturbing growth in armed crime.”

Despite the anti-gun laws, we find disturbing empirical data during 2001:

Between April and November 2001, the number of murders in the Metropolitan Police area committed with a firearm soared by almost 90% over the same period a year earlier

(SOURCE: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/1741336.stm)

And also as well in 2002 of gun crimes and over all crimes:

RECORDED CRIME RISES

  • Overall crime: 9.3%
  • Gun crime: 35%
  • Robbery: 14.5%
  • Domestic burglary: 7.9%
  • Drug offences: 12.3%
  • Sexual offences: 18.2% Source: Home Office
  • (SOURCE: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/low/uk_news/politics/2640817.stm)

    In 2003, despite being into the fifth year of English total gun ban, gun control still did not produce its desired effect but rather:

    there are more and more guns being used by more and more criminals in more and more crimes.

    So much crime increase that,

    According to a UN survey from last month, England and Wales now have the highest crime rate of the world’s 20 leading nations.

    So what does England do? Pass more laws:

    Now, in the wake of Birmingham’s New Year bloodbath, there are calls for the total ban to be made even more total: if the gangs refuse to obey the existing laws, we’ll just pass more laws for them not to obey.

    (SOURCE: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2003/01/05/do0502.xml&sSheet=/opinion/2003/01/05/ixopinion.html)

    If they won’t obey the laws already, what makes them obey a total gun ban by passing another total gun ban?

    3.) Gun Control: Who benefits and who loses?

    We have already seen who are the victims of gun control, especially a total weapons ban above.  There are more victims with the rise of gun control.

    Virginia2520Tech2520shootings.jpg

    Should citizens try to help other citizens and defend yourself when there are criminal activies that victimizes people with the use of gun?

    When you disarm the citizenry, when you prosecute them for being so foolish as to believe they have a right to self-defence, when you issue warnings that they should “walk on by” if they happen to see a burglary or rape in progress, the main beneficiaries will obviously be the criminals.

    (SOURCE: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2003/01/05/do0502.xml&sSheet=/opinion/2003/01/05/ixopinion.html)

    Taking away a law abiding citizen’s deterrent, it makes law abiding citizens easier to target, because law abiding citizens will abide with the gun control laws while the criminal will not.

    Having disarm the population, those who are armed (the totalitarian state, criminals, etc) will benefit.

    4.) Does responsible Gun ownership protect lives and property?

    Did you know that yesterday, on April 20th, there was an:

    armed robbery of a convenience store in Hoopa that ended when the suspected robber was shot.

    (SOURCE: http://www.eurekareporter.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ArticleID=23108)

    And on the same day somewhere else, it saved the life of a victim of an armed burglary that ended with the criminals shooting and wounding the home owner?

    One of the robbers shot at him, hitting him in the neck. He ran into the street. The robbers followed him outside.

    The homeowner told police he fired at the robbers. As the robbers returned fire, two retreated into the house. The third, Price, continued to exchange gunfire with the homeowner.

    (SOURCE: http://www.kansascity.com/115/story/77569.html)

    Or, in the hands of a citizen working as a security guard, it ended a robbery?

    A suspected robber was shot and wounded by security guards after he and another man allegedly robbed a business in Hyde Park on Monday, Gauteng police said.

    (SOURCE: http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?set_id=1&click_id=15&art_id=nw20070416164408862C252156 )

    Imagine being a mom eight months pregnant with a two year old child, and someone is physically being aggressive towards you and is now heading towards your two year old:

    The store surveillance tape shows the suspect aggressively confronting Susana while her 2-year-old daughter sits nearby.

    “She walked to just right to her quick … and went to attack her right away,” said Joe. “My wife has a big stomach like this, she’s eight months pregnant.”

    The two women struggled briefly at the counter…

    When the suspect appeared to move toward their daughter, Susana shot the suspect in the shoulder blade, near the collarbone.

    (SOURCE: http://wcco.com/topstories/local_story_098095821.html)

    Imagine a place where every body has guns.  Some people believe that with more guns, we:

    would soon become a place where routine disagreements between neighbors would be settled in shootouts.

    But is this necessarily true?

    In March 1982, 25 years ago, the small town of Kennesaw – responding to a handgun ban in Morton Grove, Ill. – unanimously passed an ordinance requiring each head of household to own and maintain a gun. Since then, despite dire predictions of “Wild West” showdowns and increased violence and accidents, not a single resident has been involved in a fatal shooting – as a victim, attacker or defender.

    The crime rate initially plummeted for several years after the passage of the ordinance, with the 2005 per capita crime rate actually significantly lower than it was in 1981, the year before passage of the law.

    Prior to enactment of the law, Kennesaw had a population of just 5,242 but a crime rate significantly higher (4,332 per 100,000) than the national average (3,899 per 100,000). The latest statistics available – for the year 2005 – show the rate at 2,027 per 100,000. Meanwhile, the population has skyrocketed to 28,189.

    (SOURCE: http://worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=55288)

    In summarizing the above, this town mandated everyone to own a gun and this have a dramatic turnaround in crime reduction.

    Contrast to its sister city of Morton Grove, which was the first city with a law to ban guns for those who are not officers:

    More significantly, perhaps, the city’s crime rate increased by 15.7 percent immediately after the gun ban, even though the overall crime rate in Cook County rose only 3 percent.

    (SOURCE: http://worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=55288)

    Does the good outweigh the bad, in having guns?

    firearms are used defensively an estimated 2.5 million times every year, four times more than criminal uses. This represents some 2,575 lives protected and saved for every life lost to a gun. According to the national Safety Council, the loss of life to accidental firearm death is at its lowest point since records were begun nearly a hundred years ago.

    (SOURCE: http://www.tucsoncitizen.com/daily/opinion/48570.php)

    gun

    I just hope that those who are swept by the emotions of anti-gun rhethorics in light of the tragic incident in Virginia Tech might take the time to take into consideration the four factors I’ve stated.

    Will having more weapon mean that violence will never happen? I don’t think so, and I don’t know anyone that does argue that.  Its because of the sinfulness of man’s nature that violence are born.  But taking everything into consideration, more gun control is not the solution.

    THE END.

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    This man’s act was of a hero – sacrificial and loving.

    I don’t know much about this man, don’t know about his political views or his religious views but one thing I do know is that he had a sacrificial and loving heart to want to protect his students first before himself. 

    This is far from any speculation of how this man’s ethnic opposition is crying foul. No matter how the Muslims view the Jews and the Old Testament, the contrast is great – one would give up his life to save others – the other would give up his life to destroy others. 

    And as a believer of the New Testament,  

    We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren -1 John 3:16 

    Profile of Liviu Librescu
    Israeli professor killed in US attack
    Holocaust survivor blocked shooter, letting students flee
    Slain Israeli Professor Saved Others in Va. Tech Massacre

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    Before understanding why the Supreme Court ruling to uphold legislation is still a lost, let me give some background on the Congressional Legislation that was upheld:

    Description of the Law

    FOXNews reported on the television today the results of the supreme court case, Gonzales v. Carhart, regarding the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003, passed by Congress and signed by President Bush. The act describes partial-birth abortion as:

    an abortion in which a physician delivers an unborn child’s body until only the head remains inside the womb, punctures the back of the child’s skull with a Sharp instrument, and sucks the child’s brains out before completing delivery of the dead infant — is a gruesome and inhumane procedure that is never medically necessary and should be prohibited.

    The act also justifies the prohibition centering on the lack of evidence that the procedure is safer than any alternative method citing the increase risk of,

    “among other things: an increase in a woman’s risk of suffering from cervical incompetence, a result of cervical dilation making it difficult or impossible for a woman to successfully carry a subsequent pregnancy to term; an increased risk of uterine rupture, abruption, amniotic fluid embolus, and trauma to the uterus as a result of converting the child to a footling breech position, a procedure which, according to a leading obstetrics textbook, “there are very few, if any, indications for . . . other than for delivery of a second twin”; and a risk of lacerations and secondary hemorrhaging due to the doctor blindly forcing a sharp instrument into the base of the unborn child’s skull while he or she is lodged in the birth canal, an act which could result in severe bleeding, brings with it the threat of shock, and could ultimately result in maternal death.”

    The act also goes into details about the baby, noting,

    “The vast majority of babies killed during partial-birth abortions are alive until the end of the procedure. It is a medical fact, however, that unborn infants at this stage can feel pain when subjected to painful stimuli and that their perception of this pain is even more intense than that of newborn infants and older children when subjected to the same stimuli. Thus, during a partial-birth abortion procedure, the child will fully experience the pain associated with piercing his or her skull and sucking out his or her brain.”

    The Supreme Court Opinion

    The majority 5-4 opinion states, “We conclude the Act should be sustained against the objections lodged by the broad, facial attack brought against it.” A FoxNews article observes, “The decision pitted the court’s conservatives against its liberals, with President Bush’s two appointees, Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito, siding with the majority. Justices Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia also were in the majority.”

    This was a much different outcome from an earlier law in 2000, passed by congress which was not upheld by the Supreme Court in Stenborg vs Carhart. FOXNews writer notes that, “In 2000, the court with key differences in its membership struck down a state ban on partial-birth abortions.”

    Still a Loss

    This is ultimately not a win for abortion activists based on several observations.

    First, Chief Justice Kennedy did not support prohibiting abortion from the earlier 2000 Nebraskan legislation. The FOXNews article states that “Kennedy’s dissent in 2000 was so strong that few court watchers expected him to take a different view of the current case.”

    Second, the current majority opinion maintains the same position the court has always held:

    “We assume the following principles for the purposes of this opinion. Before viability, a State “may not prohibit any woman from making the ultimate decision to terminate her pregnancy.” 505 U. S., at 879 (plurality opinion). It also may not impose upon this right an undue burden, which exists if a regulation’s “purpose or effect is to place a substantial obstacle in the path of a woman seeking an abortion before the fetus attains viability.” Id., at 878. On the other hand, “[r]egulations which do no more than create a structural mechanism by which the State, or the parent or guardian of a minor, may express profound respect for the life of the unborn are permitted, if they are not a substantial obstacle to the woman’s exercise of the right to choose.” Id., at 877. Casey, in short, struck a balance. The balance was central to its holding. We now apply its standard to the cases at bar.”

    (GONZALES v. CARHART Opinion of the Court 15-16)

    Third, the opinion of the court, upon review of the District Court’s decision, states:

    “The District Court in Carhart concluded the Act was unconstitutional for two reasons. First, it determined the Act was unconstitutional because it lacked an exception allowing the procedure where necessary for the health ofthe mother. 331 F. Supp. 2d, at 1004–1030. Second, the District Court found the Act deficient because it covered not merely intact D&E but also certain other D&Es. Id., at 1030–1037.”

    (GONZALES v. CARHART Opinion of the Court 19)

    In other words, the previous opinion ruled the previous law was too general, prohibiting more than partial-birth abortion procedure, called ‘Intact D&E’, developed by Dr. Martin Haskell and presented in 1992 (GONZALES v. CARHART Opinion of the Court 14).

    Fourth, the majority court opinion concludes, “that the Act is not void for vagueness, does not impose an undue burden from any overbreadth, and is not invalid on its face.” Thus, the reason why this law was upheld was the law specifically banned a particularly gruesome type of procedure that did not “pose undue burden” upon a woman’s right to choose abortion.

    In conclusion, this is a win for abortion activists. Ultimately, the Supreme Court has made clear its position that abortion should not be banned. The majority ruling essentially bans a certain method of execution. The supreme court ruling by analogy affirmed the death penalty but forbid death by firing squad but for babies. The only comfort to pro-life activists is that now babies will die less painfully- without getting their brains sucked out.

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    Ismail Ax

    Are the networks and reporters ready to tackle the issues? When are they going to start talking about, “Ismail Ax?”

    This was written across the murderer’s hand. The news have reported on everything, assignment papers, counseling, friends, where he came from, his family, guns, etc. BUT what about the inscription on his hand!

    The name Ismail refers to a prophet’s name in Islam.

    Was this murderer a follower of Islam or influence by Islamic teaching? Maybe, perhaps, no, yes, the news need to report on it and someone needs to investigate.

    VA Tech mass shooting: Who or what is Ismail Ax? UPDATED
    ISMAIL AX: AMERICA’S BESLAN
    Jihad

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