From time-to-time, I hear certain nominal believers contend–usually the believers who lean towards the “spiritual but not religious” side of the religious spectrum–that they do not need to go to Church given that they can worship God anywhere, and while this is ultimately true, it is also a disingenuous and slightly misleading excuse, for just as it is true that a person can work-out anywhere it is also true that arguably the best place to work-out–the place where one will have the most focus, the least non-exercise related distractions, the most willingness to push one’s self, a natural and encouraging environment for working out, so on–is in a proper and formal gym, and it is also the case that many people claim to be able to work-out anywhere precisely to avoid having to attend the focused confines of the gym, thereby leading them to avoid a strenuous work-out, and in the same way, it is the case that while it is true that a person can worship God anywhere it is also true that arguably the best place to worship Him–the place where one will have the most focus, the least distractions, a natural and encouraging environment for working out, and so on–is in a Church, and so the claim that God can be worshiped anywhere, which is so often just used as an excuse to avoid taking a mere few hours out of one’s day on Sunday, needs to be immediately followed by the understanding that, though it is true that God can be worshiped anywhere, it is also true that a Church is the best place to do so, and that avoidance of this truth simply to indulge one’s sloth and hedonism is a sin; indeed, when you think about it, the aforementioned fact seems obvious, for while a man can be healed anywhere, he is most often best healed in a hospital, and while a man can be educated anywhere, he is most often best educated in an lively educational academy (not like the ones we have today), and while a man can eat anywhere, he is most often best fed in a clean and sanitary restaurant, and so the point stands: while God can indeed be worshiped anywhere, he is, more often than not, best worshiped in the place made to worship Him, and so if you are simply using the excuse that “God can be worshiped anywhere” as a reason to avoid your duty to go to Church, then stop, and get yourself to the place that you should be getting to in order to worship the Lord in the best way possible….and do so today.
The fact that Islam is not a race but rather a religion and a political ideology, and the fact that Muslims come from essentially all major ethnic and racial backgrounds, and hence the fact that calling critics of Islam “racists” is false and disingenuous, is so bloody obvious that it is not even worthy of being mentioned by any honest person, and yet it has to be mentioned in today’s day and age–which is sad, and a mark of the stupidity and decline and dishonesty of our times–given the idiotic and reflexive desire by certain segments of the leftist political population to label any criticism of Islam as racist (and if you have ever made such a claim, then you should stop, as doing so is literally false and moronic); now, as stated, it is obvious that Islam is not a race and hence obvious that critics of Islam are not racists, but one further way to see the truth of this point, and one way in which to show this point to the fools and knaves who have some sympathy with the idea that criticism of Islam is racist, and one further way to know that the use of this term “racist” is ultimately just about using it as a tool of power to shut down any debate about Islam, is to simply point out that no one on the left side of the political spectrum would ever dream of calling someone a “racist” for criticizing Christianity, and yet Christianity, just like Islam, is a religion and a partial political ideology with members from nearly all major ethnic and racial backgrounds, and so the very fact that a leftist critic of Christianity would never be labelled a “racist” by the left, but a right-leaning (or even left-leaning) critic of Islam would, tells you all that you need to know about what the actual purpose of using the term racist is in this case: It is simply about power and shutting down criticism of Islam, which is why the next time someone calls you a “racist” for criticizing Islam, not only tell them that they are &$%## stupid, but tell them to go to hell as well, and then keep on talking…its the only way to keep the dishonest liars from stopping the debate.
As funny as it may sound, I strongly suspect that one of the reasons that many of those true believers on the left-side of the political spectrum (not just the ones using the left for personal power, money, and gain) are so often so adamant about the issue of “Climate Change” (what does that even mean, by the way?) is because, on the one hand, humans have an innate need to strive against what is evil and wrong, and–and this is the key point–on the other hand, so-called Climate Change has become the evil that many left-leaning individuals have chosen to strive against not only because it is rather inoffensive in its demands against individuals (and you can’t offend inanimate “Mother Nature”) but also because it is an evil which does not demand any real personal or individual change in order to be implemented given that it is a change that can simply be pushed on people from above via governmental force (just think of how quick a massive “carbon” tax could be put in place by a motivated government); indeed, this is one of the reasons, for instance, for why the left avoids the the issue of demanding change about radical Islam or about the problems (medical, psychological, and otherwise) that arise with sexual immorality, for such demands require rigorous and deep personal and individual change if they to be implemented for the government cannot ultimately force change in these respects (at least not easily) and also, talking about such issues has the possibility to be highly offensive to many individuals, which is anathema to the left (unless you are a white male Christian), and so these are some of the reasons that these issues are avoided by the left (or glossed over) while climate change is pushed, pushed, pushed, for while the latter may or may not be an actual threat to human existence (who knows, it could be beneficial), fighting against it makes the leftist feel like he is combating evil in some significant way through his preferred tool of government (rather than individual responsibility) all while protecting his precious ego from feeling like he is offending anyone in any significant way, for few people are personally offended about a “Battle Against the Climate!”….and the fact that these truly might be some of the underlying reasons motivating the leftist push against climate change is not something which is insignificant to the consideration of how seriously we should take those on the left who claim that climate change is the greatest threat to mankind in the modern era.
I contend that once a Christian gets to a certain advanced point of wisdom in his development in the truth of Christian theism, there is only one proactive (not penitential) prayer that such a Christian should utter: Lord, thy Will be Done, Always, Everywhere, and most especially in Me; meditate on why this is the only thing that a Christian should ultimately ask of the Lord, and it will help you realize both how you should act as a Christian and what you should expect from life as a Christian as well.
The issue of free-will–and here I mean free-will in the broadly libertarian sense–is fascinating, but as interesting as that issue, in and of itself, is, free-will is also interesting in that it is an issue which can give us a very simple and intuitive argument for the existence of god, for consider the following layman’s chain of reasoning:
1. All my experience tells me that I have free-will and all of society is build on that belief, and so I am rational to believe that I do have free-will until and unless given good reason to believe otherwise;
2. Something like free-will can only come from something that has and/or can create free-will;
3. The only thing that I know of that has free-will are persons (minds), and so the best explanation is that my free-will comes from a person (a mind), but the chain of persons cannot go on infinitely, and therefore there must be an uncaused and first free-willed person who is the cause of all the other free-will in other persons, and such a person deserves the label of a god…
…and when put into more philosophically rigorous terms, the argument might go like this:
a. I have a properly basic belief that I have libertarian free-will, and therefore, not only am I rational to believe that I have it, but, because it is a properly basic belief, the burden of proof is actually on the person denying this belief to demonstrate his case, not on me to prove it, and so I am rational to hold to my belief that I have free-will until and unless a sufficiently warranted defeater is brought against this belief;
b. There are no sufficient defeaters to my belief that I have libertarian free-will;
c. Given the Principle of Proportionate Causality (which states that an effect must, in some way, be entirely contained in its cause), I thus note that whatever caused me to have free-will must somehow have the causal resources / ability to create free-will to exist in something else.
d. Not only are there no known impersonal forces / mechanisms which could cause free-will to exist in something else, but the only things that I know that have free-will are personal (rational) entities like me (essentially, minds).
e. In light of the above, the only presently known causal explanation for my having free-will is that it was caused in me by some other personal (rational) entity which can create free-will, but such a chain of causality cannot go on to infinity, and thus, there must be a first and uncaused personal (rational) entity which exists (or existed) which has the ability to cause free-will and which gave free-will to all other personal (rational) entities that exist and have free-will, and any such uncaused personal and rational entity with free-will that exists (or existed) deserves the label ‘god’, and so, given all this, I am rational to be a theist, not an atheist;
f. Or, alternatively, for a “Inference to the Best Explanation” type approach to this issue, one might, after point (d), simply point out that between atheism (atheistic-naturalism) and theism, atheism simply does not have the ‘explanatory power’ to account for the existence of free-will in persons like theism has (an omni-God could give free-will to others by definition), nor is atheism ‘congruent with the background knowledge’ that only persons have free-will, nor is atheism simple given that it postulates an impersonal “thing or force” which is somehow (miraculously?) able to confer free-will to persons through some unknown mechanism, and so theism is therefore the better explanation of free-will, and thus theism is rational to believe in on the basis of free-will, at least provisionally.
One thing that a Christian must always remember–even though sometimes it is very hard to do so–is that hopelessness is a great sin, and thus the Christian must never despair, and the reason that he must never despair or become hopeless is because to do so is to literally admit–through one’s actions and one’s behavior–that Christianity is false, for true despair and genuine hopelessness could only arise in a situation in which we believed that God was not in control of creation or in a situation that negated Christ’s overcoming of the world and its foul sin, and yet, of course, CHRIST IS ALREADY VICTORIOUS, and so are all of us who stand with him, and so how could we ever genuinely despair if Christ is indeed victorious; so, as stated, the Christian cannot despair of this world, for to do so is to deny Christ himself, and thus the Christian who despairs literally cannot exist, for the Christian who despairs denies the foundation of Christianity, and thus the truly despairing Christian forfeits his Christianity the moment he genuinely despairs, and so remember, NEVER DESPAIR, FOR CHRIST IS KING (…and, of course, I do not mean that a Christian who has flashes of despair and hopelessness, or who is, say, clinically depressed, is not a true Christian, but rather that a Christian who begins to willingly and freely embrace despair and hopelessness has thus willingly and freely let go of his Christian faith, and he thus needs to repent of his despair in order to be able to genuinely retake the mantle of ‘Christian’ upon his shoulders).
With yet more deaths at the hands of Islamist jihadists in European and Western lands, and with this being yet one more attack of Islamist jihad in this era of terroristic jihad–and era that started in earnest just a sliver of time after the two thousandth anniversary of the birth of mankind’s Lord–many people in the West weep and wonder why these victims, seemingly random and unconnected to jihad, had to perish so horribly, and yet what so many of the historically-ignorant man-children of the West forget is that these victims were not random and not unconnected, for they were not randomly targeted but were specifically selected precisely because they were citizen members of what was once Christendom, and these European victims were not unconnected to history, for they are intimately connected to the European Christians who died, or were raped, or were kidnapped, or were enslaved, or were mutilated at the hands of jihadists countless times over centuries and centuries, such as when jihadists invaded Spain, or fought in France, or occupied the Balkans for generations, or pushed towards Vienna, or destroyed Constantinople, or pirated the Mediterranean, or raided the coasts of Italy, or any of the other countless atrocities worthy of condemnation that jihadists committed since the birth of Islam; so let us not think of these victims as somehow standing alone, or somehow not being connected to the other jihadist victims of history, for these newest fatalities are but the latest in a long-line of historical victims of jihad, and though Europeans may have forgotten this fact due to the historical blip of communism which has loomed large over the past century, the fact is that the main attacker against the West has always been Islam, and it seems that now that the scourge of communism has largely died in the West as a political force running nations (but it has increased culturally), it now seems that Islam is re-asserting itself with the same sort of violent rigor that it did at its founding.