Sunday, May 31, 2015

Commemorating the Trinity

"ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who hast given unto us thy servants grace, by the confession of a true faith to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity, and in the power of the Divine Majesty to worship the Unity: We beseech thee, that thou wouldest keep us stedfast in this faith, and evermore defend us from all adversities, who livest and reignest, one God, world without end." ~ The Collect for Trinity Sunday
Trinity Sunday commemorates and honors not an event, but a reality of that great mystery: the Holy Trinity.
ChurchPOP: One of the greatest articulations of the doctrine of the Trinity is the Athanasian Creed. Though named after the great 4th century defender of Trinitarian orthodoxy and hero of the faith St. Athanasius, most scholars today believe the creed was written a few centuries after his death. But regardless of who wrote it, it is a clear and thorough profession of the faith approved and used by the Church for more than a millenium.
Whosoever will be saved, before all things it is necessary that he hold the Catholic Faith.
Which Faith except everyone do keep whole and undefiled, without doubt he shall perish everlastingly.
And the Catholic Faith is this: That we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity, neither confounding the Persons, nor dividing the Substance.
For there is one Person of the Father, another of the Son, and another of the Holy Ghost.
But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, is all one, the Glory equal, the Majesty co-eternal.
Such as the Father is, such is the Son, and such is the Holy Ghost.
The Father uncreate, the Son uncreate, and the Holy Ghost uncreate.
The Father incomprehensible, the Son incomprehensible, and the Holy Ghost incomprehensible.
The Father eternal, the Son eternal, and the Holy Ghost eternal.
And yet they are not three eternals, but one eternal.
As also there are not three incomprehensibles, nor three uncreated, but one uncreated, and one incomprehensible.
So likewise the Father is Almighty, the Son Almighty, and the Holy Ghost Almighty.
And yet they are not three Almighties, but one Almighty.

So the Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Ghost is God.
And yet they are not three Gods, but one God.
So likewise the Father is Lord, the Son Lord, and the Holy Ghost Lord.
And yet not three Lords, but one Lord.
For like as we are compelled by the Christian verity to acknowledge every Person by himself to be both God and Lord,
So are we forbidden by the Catholic Religion, to say, There be three Gods, or three Lords.
The Father is made of none, neither created, nor begotten.
The Son is of the Father alone, not made, nor created, but begotten.
The Holy Ghost is of the Father and of the Son, neither made, nor created, nor begotten, but proceeding.
So there is one Father, not three Fathers; one Son, not three Sons; one Holy Ghost, not three Holy Ghosts.
And in this Trinity none is before, or after other; none is greater, or less than another;
But the whole three Persons are co-eternal together and co-equal.
So that in all things, as is aforesaid, the Unity in Trinity and the Trinity in Unity is to be worshipped.
He therefore that will be saved is must think thus of the Trinity.

Furthermore, it is necessary to everlasting salvation that he also believe rightly the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ.
For the right Faith is, that we believe and confess, that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and Man;
God, of the substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds; and Man of the substance of his Mother, born in the world;
Perfect God and perfect Man, of a reasonable soul and human flesh subsisting.
Equal to the Father, as touching his Godhead; and inferior to the Father, as touching his manhood;
Who, although he be God and Man, yet he is not two, but one Christ;
One, not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh but by taking of the Manhood into God;
One altogether; not by confusion of Substance, but by unity of Person.
For as the reasonable soul and flesh is one man, so God and Man is one Christ;
Who suffered for our salvation, descended into hell, rose again the third day from the dead.
He ascended into heaven, he sitteth at the right hand of the Father, God Almighty, from whence he will come to judge the quick and the dead.
At whose coming all men will rise again with their bodies and shall give account for their own works.
And they that have done good shall go into life everlasting; and they that have done evil into everlasting fire.
This is the Catholic Faith, which except a man believe faithfully, he cannot be saved.
Unity in Trinity...Trinity in Unity! Amen.

Related link: Dear Priests: The Top 5 Heresies to Avoid This Trinity Sunday

Source: TO BE A CHRISTIAN: An Anglican Catechism

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Wrapping your head around all the trade talks...and why the GOP is buying into it

“Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations...entangling alliances with none” ~ Thomas Jefferson
TPA, TPP...there's even a TTIP and a TISA. What does it all mean? In a nutshell, it means more globalization and less sovereignty...but many politicians, even the ones we like, think at least some of this is a good idea.
RedState: [Thursday], the Senate granted TPA (trade promotion authority, also known as “fast-track”) to President Obama in order to negotiate the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership).

The TPP has been dubbed in conservative circles as “ObamaTrade,” due to the nature of how the final deal will come about. The parameters of the deal have been secret so far. Maybe there are provisions they don’t want the public to see?

When fast-track authority is given to the President, once he submits the deal to Congress only an up-or-down vote may be held. Congress may not amend the bill nor can they filibuster the bill. The very purpose of fast-tracking is to ensure a deal can bypass parliamentary procedure.

We can almost be certain that the final version of the TPP will be very bad for America. However, with President Obama, Majority Leader McConnell, Speaker Boehner, and powerful lobbyists all supporting it, we cannot be certain that Congress would vote down the deal.

Who in their right mind would put the nation in such a precarious position? There is no upside with fast-tracking the TPP, but there is the very probable downside that it gets approved.

With all of this said, here is how each Senator voted on the TPA:

YEAs ---62
Alexander (R-TN)
Ayotte (R-NH)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Bennet (D-CO)
Blunt (R-MO)
Boozman (R-AR)
Burr (R-NC)
Cantwell (D-WA)
Capito (R-WV)
Cardin (D-MD)
Carper (D-DE)
Cassidy (R-LA)
Coats (R-IN)
Cochran (R-MS)
Coons (D-DE)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Cotton (R-AR)
Crapo (R-ID)
Cruz (R-TX)
Daines (R-MT)
Ernst (R-IA)
Feinstein (D-CA)
Fischer (R-NE)
Flake (R-AZ)
Gardner (R-CO)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Hatch (R-UT)
Heitkamp (D-ND)
Heller (R-NV)
Hoeven (R-ND)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johnson (R-WI)
Kaine (D-VA)
Kirk (R-IL)
Lankford (R-OK)
McCain (R-AZ)
McCaskill (D-MO)
McConnell (R-KY)
Moran (R-KS)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Murray (D-WA)
Nelson (D-FL)
Perdue (R-GA)
Portman (R-OH)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Rounds (R-SD)
Rubio (R-FL)
Sasse (R-NE)
Scott (R-SC)
Shaheen (D-NH)
Sullivan (R-AK)
Thune (R-SD)
Tillis (R-NC)
Toomey (R-PA)
Vitter (R-LA)
Warner (D-VA)
Wicker (R-MS)
Wyden (D-OR)
NAYs ---37
Baldwin (D-WI)
Blumenthal (D-CT)
Booker (D-NJ)
Boxer (D-CA)
Brown (D-OH)
Casey (D-PA)
Collins (R-ME)
Donnelly (D-IN)
Durbin (D-IL)
Franken (D-MN)
Gillibrand (D-NY)
Heinrich (D-NM)
Hirono (D-HI)
King (I-ME)
Klobuchar (D-MN)
Leahy (D-VT)
Lee (R-UT)
Manchin (D-WV)
Markey (D-MA)
Menendez (D-NJ)
Merkley (D-OR)
Mikulski (D-MD)
Murphy (D-CT)
Paul (R-KY)
Peters (D-MI)
Reed (D-RI)
Reid (D-NV)
Sanders (I-VT)
Schatz (D-HI)
Schumer (D-NY)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Stabenow (D-MI)
Tester (D-MT)
Udall (D-NM)
Warren (D-MA)
Whitehouse (D-RI)
Not Voting - 1
Enzi (R-WY)
But that's not exactly the entire picture. The US Senate passed Trade Promotion Authority, the 'fast-tracking bill,' by a 65-33 margin on May 14th BEFORE last Thursday evening's 62-38 vote to bring the debate on TPA to a close. And you see more than a few notable Republican names not only within the YEAs, but also shifting around between the two separate votes:
YEAs ---65
Alexander (R-TN)
Ayotte (R-NH)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Bennet (D-CO)
Blunt (R-MO)
Boozman (R-AR)
Burr (R-NC)
Cantwell (D-WA)
Capito (R-WV)
Carper (D-DE)
Coats (R-IN)
Cochran (R-MS)
Collins (R-ME)
Coons (D-DE)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Cotton (R-AR)
Crapo (R-ID)
Cruz (R-TX)
Daines (R-MT)
Enzi (R-WY)
Ernst (R-IA)
Feinstein (D-CA)
Fischer (R-NE)
Flake (R-AZ)
Gardner (R-CO)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Hatch (R-UT)
Heitkamp (D-ND)
Heller (R-NV)
Hoeven (R-ND)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johnson (R-WI)
Kaine (D-VA)
Kirk (R-IL)
Lankford (R-OK)
Lee (R-UT)
McCain (R-AZ)
McCaskill (D-MO)
McConnell (R-KY)
Moran (R-KS)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Murray (D-WA)
Nelson (D-FL)
Paul (R-KY)
Perdue (R-GA)
Portman (R-OH)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Rounds (R-SD)
Rubio (R-FL)
Sasse (R-NE)
Scott (R-SC)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shaheen (D-NH)
Shelby (R-AL)
Thune (R-SD)
Tillis (R-NC)
Toomey (R-PA)
Vitter (R-LA)
Warner (D-VA)
Wicker (R-MS)
Wyden (D-OR)
NAYs ---33
Baldwin (D-WI)
Blumenthal (D-CT)
Booker (D-NJ)
Boxer (D-CA)
Brown (D-OH)
Cardin (D-MD)
Casey (D-PA)
Donnelly (D-IN)
Durbin (D-IL)
Franken (D-MN)
Gillibrand (D-NY)
Heinrich (D-NM)
Hirono (D-HI)
King (I-ME)
Klobuchar (D-MN)
Leahy (D-VT)
Manchin (D-WV)
Markey (D-MA)
Menendez (D-NJ)
Merkley (D-OR)
Mikulski (D-MD)
Murphy (D-CT)
Peters (D-MI)
Reed (D-RI)
Reid (D-NV)
Sanders (I-VT)
Schatz (D-HI)
Schumer (D-NY)
Stabenow (D-MI)
Tester (D-MT)
Udall (D-NM)
Warren (D-MA)
Whitehouse (D-RI)
Not Voting - 2
Cassidy (R-LA)Sullivan (R-AK)
Back in April, Ryan and Cruz made the case in a WSJ op-ed that fast-tracking puts Congress in charge of trade, giving lawmakers more say over agreements that are vital for economic growth, but what's Congress' record thus far in holding this imperial Executive and his out-of-control administration accountable? Moreover, what about congressional accountability to the American people in acting on our behalf instead of the corporatists? (Also, that op-ed contained more 'fair deal''fair chance''level the playing field' speak coming from the opposition to our despotic president than I prefer to hear.)

For Rand Paul, the TPA is said to be a problem, sorta...
“I still might vote for the trade agreement, but I hate giving up power. We give up so much power from Congress to the presidency, and with them being so secretive on the treaty, it just concerns me what’s in the treaty,” Paul said, explaining his ‘no’ vote on fast tracking the TPP.
Voting against it last Thursday after he voted for it on the 14th...but he still might vote for the TPP? Trying to have his cake and eat it too?

So why are so many Republicans, including the most conservative among them, signing on to this when their conservative constituency says NO? Follow the money...
TheGuardian: A decade in the making, the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is reaching its climax and as Congress hotly debates the biggest trade deal in a generation, its backers have turned on the cash spigot in the hopes of getting it passed. ...

[Thursday's] vote, to give Barack Obama the authority to speed the bill through Congress, comes as the president’s own supporters, senior economists and a host of activists have lobbied against a pact they argue will favor big business but harm US jobs, fail to secure better conditions for workers overseas and undermine free speech online.

Those critics are unlikely to be silenced by an analysis of the sudden flood of money it took to push the pact over its latest hurdle.

Fast-tracking the TPP, meaning its passage through Congress without having its contents available for debate or amendments, was only possible after lots of corporate money exchanged hands with senators. ...

Those impressive majorities follow months of behind-the-scenes wheeling and dealing by the world’s most well-heeled multinational corporations with just a handful of holdouts.
The piece goes on to name names in exploring the payouts from pro-TPP corporations, while fast-tracking was being debated in the Senate! In summary, out of the total $1,148,971 given, an average of $17,676.48 was donated to each of the 65 YEAs, with the average Republican member receiving $19,673.28 and the average Democrat receiving $9,689.23, both from the same corporate TPP-supporting crony capitalists (the amounts rise dramatically for those senators running for re-election).

Over at AEI, an interesting point to end on is made in comparison to Sen. Sessions' concerns over fast-tracking such trade deals in conjuction with our sovereign law...
Senator Sessions believes, “Conservativism is to proceed with caution, guided by the results of history, with a willingness to adjust one’s position based on real-world results.”

Another version of conservatism is to embrace freedom and competition as fully as possible, guided by the overwhelming evidence from real-world results today and throughout history that freedom and competition bring prosperity. Take your pick.
Take your pick in throwing caution to the wind? All for a supposed embrace? Trading liberty for security? A particular utterance comes to mind: "I've abandoned free market principles to save the free market system." None of this encompasses a conservative approach. Yet, far too many Republicans and conservatives seem convinced otherwise.

Related links: This Is The Difference Between TPP And TPA (Hint: They Are Not The Same Thing)
Paul and Cruz Disagree Over TPP, Here’s Why…
This is How a Sellout Politician Votes
How the Media Misrepresent ‘Fast Track,’ TPP, & TTIP
Is It Really All Our Fault?
Right and Left Globalism
Globalism is liberalism

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

How the Obama admin allows the enemy to overrun Iraq

Or as entitled at the top of Obama's syllabus: How to Lose a War 101. So disgraceful.

This goes hand-in-hand with a related piece in yesterday's Memorial Day message (also where I pulled the 'Lions led by Donkeys' description, which is extremely accurate!).

In the compassionate elitist desire to redefine (like everything else) war as the HELL that it is, we've lost the ability to ever win against any enemy for fear of harming a single civilian. Meanwhile, WE, American civilians, Israeli civilians, Christian and Jewish non-combatants, and yes, even Muslim non-combatants, are ALL targets of these Islamists' murderous goals. Fighting battles with hands tied...not very effective...
NYTimes: American intelligence analysts have identified seven buildings in downtown Raqqa in eastern Syria as the main headquarters of the Islamic State. But the buildings have gone untouched during the 10-month allied air campaign.

And just last week, convoys of heavily armed Islamic State fighters paraded triumphantly through the streets of the provincial capital Ramadi in western Iraq after forcing Iraqi troops to flee. They rolled on unscathed by coalition fighter-bombers.

American and allied warplanes are equipped with the most precise aerial arsenal ever fielded. But American officials say they are not striking significant, and obvious, Islamic State targets out of fear that the attacks will accidentally kill civilians. Killing such innocents could hand the militants a major propaganda coup and alienate the local Sunni tribesmen, whose support is critical to ousting the militants, and Sunni Arab countries that are part of the fragile American-led coalition.

But many Iraqi commanders and some American officers say that exercising such prudence with airstrikes is a major reason the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or Daesh, has been able to seize vast territory in recent months in Iraq and Syria. That caution — coupled with President Obama’s reluctance to commit significant American firepower to a war the White House declared over in 2011, when the last United States combat troops withdrew from Iraq — has led to persistent complaints from Iraqi officials that the United States has been too cautious in its air campaign. Iraqi officials say the limited American airstrikes have allowed columns of Islamic State fighters essentially free movement on the battlefield.
It's not enough to take out a few here, a few there. This entire barbaric society must be ripped out by its roots...and we've got plenty of heavy bombers to accommodate, if only our allied forces were permitted by the political hands that bind them.

Eisenhower? FDR? Nixon? TRUMAN?! Any of these come to mind anymore?

Related links: How ISIS Expands
Pelosi: We’ve made big “advances” against ISIS … on social media … kind of
Air Force Head: Russia And China Will Have 'BETTER’ Air Capabilities In 3 To 5 Years
Genocide In Iraq Convert Or Die Mark Levin Weighs In Hannity
Why Can’t America Win a War Anymore?

Judges deliver another blow to Obama's amnesty

DENIED! Still not thrilled that this is taking the courts to root through what should be halted by Congress (if we had one with any semblance of a collective spine). Nonetheless, we'll take this: another score for the Constitution!
WT: A federal appeals court refused to lift an injunction against President Obama’s deportation amnesty in a ruling Tuesday that delivers a second major legal setback to the administration and keeps millions of illegal immigrants on hold.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit sided with a lower court that ruled Mr. Obama probably broke the law in taking unilateral action last year to grant an amnesty from deportation. The three-judge panel, ruling 2-1, shot down Mr. Obama’s hopes of quickly restarting the amnesty, and make it likely he’ll have to go to the Supreme Court to try to win his case.

The majority, Judges Jerry E. Smith and Jennifer Elrod, said the president’s new program, known as Deferred Action for Parental Accountability or DAPA, is a binding policy that should have gone through the usual public notice and comment period, instead of being announced unilaterally by Mr. Obama and Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson late last year.

“We live in a nation governed by a system of checks and balances, and the president’s attempt to bypass the will of the American people was successfully checked again today,” said Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who as his state’s attorney general last year began the lawsuit challenging the new amnesty.

Twenty-five states joined Texas in suing to halt the amnesty, arguing they would bear new costs in having to issue driver’s licenses to the illegal immigrants and provide health care and other services to them. The states said the president’s actions were unconstitutional or, at the very least, illegal.
How 'bout unconstitional AND illegal!

The Great One opened his program this evening with the news...
TRS: Mark Levin opened his show today explaining the decision by a federal appeals court not to stay the ruling of a federal court, which continues the hold on Obama’s illegal amnesty until it gets worked out in the court system. Levin unpacks it as only he can.

Related links: DENIED!! JUDGE SLAPS DOWN OBAMA’S AMNESTY REQUEST!!
Appellate court opinion upholding district court & stopping Obama's unconstitutional amnesty, for now (PDF)

Monday, May 25, 2015

A Memorial Day message

"What we do for ourselves dies with us, what we do for others and the world remains and is immortal...” ~ Albert Pine
A special Memorial Day message from Ssgt. John Eric Mejia...
CampHope: As we gather today at barbeques, parks, and beaches, I would ask that we all take a moment to remember why it is that we have this day? Let us not do so somberly, but proudly. Let us honor all our Veterans, dead and living. What this day and all the memorial parks around the nation do is not to let us forget the Veterans who sacrificed to give us our freedom, but rather gives us a day and a place to honor their memory.

This day pays tribute to our Fallen Veterans' contributions to American Freedom, it should remind all who hear the phrase "Freedom isn't Free" that those are not just words, they are a value, a belief in the way of life that puts service for others above self. The American people cannot and should not ever forget what these Heroes did for us. We as a nation must keep faith with all our fallen Heroes and our Veterans. This then begs the question, "How do we honor those who've sacrificed for us and our country?”

I would ask you to search yourself for the answer. What is the measure of my resolve to give thanks for the freedoms that I have and that my family has been blessed with? What am I willing to do on my part to show thanks for these Freedoms that at times I take for granted, and that so many in the world long for? Search your heart for the answer.

We need to remember the sacrifice and the courage of our fallen Heroes. Whenever there was a time our nation or the world asked ordinary men and women to do extraordinary things, our Veterans heeded the call unselfishly. From the frozen defenses of Bastogne and the Chosen Reservoir, the deserts of North Africa, Iraq and Afghanistan, the sweltering jungles of the Pacific and Vietnam, the European battlefields and all the battles at Sea and the Air Duels above foreign skies...any and all places our Veterans did their part to ensure freedom and peace.

Our honored Veterans and fallen gave up their futures so we can all have a brighter future with peace and freedom. ...

It can be said that the way we as a nation remember our Veterans and our war dead is a mark of our Nations character...and a measure of its heart and soul. All our Fallen Heroes and Veterans deserve our gratitude. They all deserve it for what they gave and deserve more than we can give for our peace and freedom. Ladies and Gentleman, never think that a handful of committed people cannot change the world...in fact it's the only thing that ever has! British Statesman and Philosopher, Edmund Burke once said "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing!"

Let us go forth and prove to our Veterans and Fallen Heroes, that we are worthy of the sacrifices borne by so few for so many.

God bless all our Fallen Heroes and their families...and God bless the United States of America.
Regardless of the deficiencies of our political classes, who've made it all too clear that our soldiers are 'Lions led by Donkeys,' we nonetheless remember their selfless sacrifice to secure the safety of our nation, the liberty of its people, and the preservation of both by facing any and all enemies both here and abroad.

Related links: Secretary of Defense Message
'The eagle couldn't have picked a better person'
Memorial Day look back: Eagle photo touches hearts
Why Can’t America Win a War Anymore?
In Time of War and Tumults.

ALMIGHTY God, the supreme Governor of all things, whose power no creature is able to resist, to whom it belongeth justly to punish sinners, and to be merciful to those who truly repent; Save and deliver us, we humbly beseech thee, from the hands of our enemies; that we, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore from all perils, to glorify thee, who art the only giver of all victory; through the merits of thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For the Army.

O LORD God of Hosts, stretch forth, we pray thee, thine almighty arm to strengthen and protect the soldiers of our country; Support them in the day of battle, and in the time of peace keep them safe from all evil; endue them with courage and loyalty; and grant that in all things they may serve without reproach; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For the Navy.

O ETERNAL Lord God, who alone spreadest out the heavens, and rulest the raging of the sea; Vouchsafe to take into thy almighty and most gracious protection our country’s Navy, and all who serve therein. Preserve them from the dangers of the sea, and from the violence of the enemy; that they may be a safeguard unto the United States of America, and a security for such as pass on the seas upon their lawful occasions; that the inhabitants of our land may in peace and quietness serve thee our God, to the glory of thy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Memorial Days.

ALMIGHTY God, our heavenly Father, in whose hands are the living and the dead; We give thee thanks for all those thy servants who have laid down their lives in the service of our country. Grant to them thy mercy and the light of thy presence, that the good work which thou hast begun in them may be perfected; through Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord. Amen.
Source: 1928 BCP

Sunday, May 24, 2015

The birth of the Church: Celebrating Pentecost

Today is Pentecost. Following the Ascension of the Son, this extraordinary event was brought about by the coming of the Holy Spirit to Christ's many disciples. We learn of these Acts through the Apostles, and Peter's first sermon brought about the fellowship of believers, one in the body of Christ (Romans 12:4-5, 1 Corinthians 12:27), and thus gave birth to the Christian Church...
Acts 2: When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven. And at this sound the multitude came together, and they were bewildered, because each one was hearing them speak in his own language. And they were amazed and astonished, saying, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each of us in his own native language? Parthians and Medes and Elamites and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabians—we hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God.” And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” But others mocking said, “They are filled with new wine.”

But Peter, standing with the eleven, lifted up his voice and addressed them: “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words. For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel:
“‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions,
and your old men shall dream dreams;
even on my male servants and female servants
in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy.
And I will show wonders in the heavens above
and signs on the earth below,
blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke;
the sun shall be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood,
before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day.
And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’
"Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know— this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it. For David says concerning him,
“‘I saw the Lord always before me,
for he is at my right hand that I may not be shaken;
therefore my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced;
my flesh also will dwell in hope.
For you will not abandon my soul to Hades,
or let your Holy One see corruption.
You have made known to me the paths of life;
you will make me full of gladness with your presence.’
"Brothers, I may say to you with confidence about the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. Being therefore a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants on his throne, he foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption. This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses. Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing. For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says,
“‘The Lord said to my Lord,
“Sit at my right hand,
until I make your enemies your footstool.”’
Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”

Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.

And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
Fitting that this precedes Memorial Day. Let us all remember the plight and sacrifice of our first Christian Soldiers and be not afraid to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, while spreading the message of Christ afar (which could be right next door).

Related links: The Pentecost: We still need the fire
What is Pentecost? Why Does It Matter?

Monday, May 18, 2015

Coming down the pike: Levin's 'Plunder and Deceit'

Levin's next book to rival Liberty & Tyranny. Synopsis is out...
Amazon: In each of his astounding #1 New York Times bestsellers, Mark R. Levin’s overlying patriotic mission has been to avert a devastating tragedy: The loss of the greatest republic known to mankind. But who stands to lose the most?

In modern America, the civil society is being steadily devoured by a ubiquitous federal government. But as the government grows into an increasingly authoritarian and centralized federal Leviathan, many parents continue to tolerate, if not enthusiastically champion, grievous public policies that threaten their children and successive generations with a grim future at the hands of a brazenly expanding and imploding entitlement state poised to burden them with massive debt, mediocre education, waves of immigration, and a deteriorating national defense.

Yet tyranny is not inevitable. In Federalist 51, James Madison explained with cautionary insight the essential balance between the civil society and governmental restraint: “In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself.”

This essential new book is, against all odds, a likeminded appeal to reason and audacity—one intended for all Americans but particularly the rising generation. Younger people must find the personal strength and will to break through the cycle of statist manipulation, unrelenting emotional overtures, and the pressure of groupthink, which are humbling, dispiriting, and absorbing them; to stand up against the heavy hand of centralized government, which if left unabated will assuredly condemn them to economic and societal calamity.

Levin calls for a new civil rights movement, one that will foster liberty and prosperity and cease the exploitation of young people by statist masterminds. He challenges the rising generation of younger Americans to awaken to the cause of their own salvation, asking: will you acquiesce to a government that overwhelmingly acts without constitutional foundation—or will you stand in your own defense so that yours and future generations can live in freedom?
Well, America? Out August 4th.

Related link: Radio Mag hails Mark Levin as true radio heavyweight with one of the largest audiences in America

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Pondering the gift of Christ's Ascension

As the religiously unaffiliated expand into the second-largest group in the US, according to a recent poll, perhaps now more than ever in this not-so-brave, not-so-new world is a time to ponder Christ's teachings, from birth to death to life reborn. And as it just so happens, today marked His glorious return to the Father in heaven...what a gift to ponder!
ChristChurch: Since the fourth century, when the Church in Jerusalem began to mark the Ascension of our Lord as a special occasion, this Feast has been celebrated in the Christian Church. Just as Ash Wednesday comes forty days before Easter, so Ascension Day is dated forty days after Easter. This reckoning stems, of course, from the assertion in the Epistle that our Lord, after His Passion, was “seen of them (the apostles) forty days” (Acts 1:3).

It has been said that Ascension Day is one of the most neglected occasions in the Christian calendar. Yet surely, it is at last on par in importance with Christmas Day. Just as Christmas marks the coming into the world of God the Son, so Ascension Day marks His leaving the world to return to the Father. Part of the reason for neglect of this day is, of course, the fact that it never comes on a Sunday, but always on a weekday, Thursday.

What happened that day? The Gospels according to Sts. Mark and Luke record the event briefly. Sts. Paul and Peter refer to it still more briefly in several of their Epistles. The fullest account is found in the Acts of the Apostles. After promising to send the Holy Ghost to empower and inspire them, Jesus is described as having been “taken up” and received into a cloud “out of their sight.” Two angels – two men who “stood by in white apparel” – assured the apostles that Jesus would eventually return in like manner.

Our Lord’s return to the Father was, of course, entirely outside the range of ordinary human life and occurrences. Yet the resurrected body which had returned to the disciples from the Tomb did depart from them in a manner which they saw and understood to be an “ascent” in a return to God the Father and which put the final seal upon their acknowledgement and understanding of Christ as the Son of God. They returned to Jerusalem rejoicing and none of them ever again wavered in his faith.

The Ascension is the period at the end of the earthly story. The story began with the Incarnation of God as Jesus, as a baby born to a Virgin by the Holy Ghost. It began with miracle and as a mystery, a manifestation of God’s power and love. The Incarnation was announced by an archangel and accompanied by a “multitude of the heavenly host” singing hosannas.

In a like manner, God withdrew His Son again to Himself in “heaven.” The corporal / spiritual resurrected body simply disappeared “upward” from the sight of the apostles. This end to the earthly story was, again, a miracle and a mystery. And again, like the beginning, it was attested to by angels present at the scene. Just as the birth to a Virgin was a promise from God and a sign of the Babe’s divinity, so the departure from Mount Olivet was a promise from God and confirmation of the Lord’s Divine Nature.

Annunciation, Incarnation, Birth, Ministry, Passion, Crucifixion, Resurrection and Ascension – these are the chief milestones along the Way of our faith. Each one is an essential element in the Testament of our Lord’s life and purpose and union with God the Father and God the Holy Ghost in the Trinity. Ascension Day should be an annual occasion for celebration both solemn and joyful, for all...
Related links: Lift Up Your Hearts: Worship for Ascension
Ascension of Jesus: A Story Still With Us
Pondering the gift of Ascension Day
Putting the Pieces Together: The Biblical Significance of Our Lord’s Ascension
POLL: America is becoming less of a Christian nation as the end draws near
Image: Top 10 reasons Washington was a man of prayer

Texas House passes Convention of States application!

One more state, an important one, to add to the tally...when the state Senate gets on board (pressure them to do so!)
ConventionOfStates: We have great news from Austin!

The Texas House passed the Convention of States resolution (HJR 77) today by a vote of 80-62!

We couldn't be prouder of our team in Texas -- they responded to our call to action, overwhelming the Texas legislature with calls and emails of support. This victory would have been impossible without their dedication, patriotism, and tenacity.

Next our resolution will move to the Texas Senate. Be looking for a specific call to action within the next few days explaining exactly who to contact and what to say!


It's past time for the states to take their power back from the ever-growing federal Leviathan...and here's a legitimate way to pull back the reins.

Hand jive, Marxist style, from University to UN

“If I were a magician, I’d hand out broken compasses. It’s all about misdirection.
”
Classic case of the need to watch both hands, stay abreast of the issues, because fast ones are afoot. While Obama goads Washington into allowing him to have unilateral say in foreign treaties and trade (with GOP leaderlessship all too willing to oblige), here's what the other hand is pulling.

Obama's not only gone full Marxist hypocrite with more redistributive yapping in the ears of impressionable youth...
On Tuesday's Mark Levin Show: There is a liberal manifesto going on in America that is similar to the communist manifesto, where the answer to inequality is more centralized government. President Obama is in full Marxist mode on his indoctrination and repetition tour despite living the exact lifestyle he condemns. We've tried spending our way out of poverty and it's only gotten us trillions of dollars in debt, yet Obama's solution is to spend more. When an economy crumbles, iron-fisted centralized government gets stronger. Obama is usurping and demanding at the same time because Marxism is an unnatural ideology which seeks to change the nature of man; in order to be successful there needs to be complete elimination and destruction of our way of life.

...he's also reached out to the wretched foreign entity of despots at the UN to complain about what he sees as America's 'human rights violations'!
Breitbart: The Obama administration has, once again, complained to the United Nations about alleged American human rights violations–and boasted about liberal policies like Obamacare as the solution.

The State Department report, released Monday as part of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) at the UN Human Rights Council, reads less like an accounting of human rights issues and more like the platform of the Democratic Party–and invites the world to judge America harshly.

The so-called “human rights” problems cited in the report include:
  • Police brutality, including the Michael Brown case in Ferguson, Missouri 
  • Discrimination against Muslims who want to build or expand mosques
  • Voter identification laws in Texas and elsewhere
  • Predatory lending in home mortgages
  • Suspension of black children in schools
  • Women earning “78 cents on the dollar” (a false statistic)
In addition, the report boasts of progress in the following areas:
  • Promoting same-sex marriage
  • Fighting discrimination against transgender children in school
  • Executive action on illegal immigration
  • Helping illegal alien children who cross the border
  • Protecting privacy rights against government surveillance
  • Trying to close the Guantánamo Bay prison for terror detainees
  • Revoking “torture” memos for interrogating terrorists
  • Passing Obamacare
  • Expanding food stamps
  • Regulating “carbon pollution” to fight climate change
The apologetic, left-liberal report echoes one filed by the Obama administration five years ago, during which the State Department proudly told the Human Rights Council that the administration opposed Arizona’s new immigration law, among other alleged American misdeeds.
Reads like a communist manifesto, doesn't it?! And an even more immoral one at that, but what else do you expect from a guy who feels confident in rebuking the words of Christ? (but not the false Prophet)

Peculiar (not really) how his list omits an actual human rights violation known as abortion, terminating over a MILLION human lives a year (over 400,000 this year alone so far) and swiftly approaching 60 MILLION since 1973. But nothing to see there.

At every step and wave of the hand, this guy sells out and undermines American exceptionalism and everything this country use to stand for.

Related links: Obama Has Just Thrown His Own Country Under The Bus At The UN, Inviting International Ridicule
Mark Levin comments on Michelle Obama's commencement speech at Tuskegee University

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Jeb Bush wants to 'punish' illegals...not exactly (ADDENDUM)

FYI, Republican Establishment: The fanatics never were within the grassroots, the tea party, or conservatism, but ARE and have always been within YOUR ESTABLISHMENT!

NEWSFLASH: The Bushies are a central, generational part of the problem (and look who and what they've led to!)...
"However you look at this Jeb Bush, the only way he's doing well is raising money, raising money with the crony capitalists. ... This man is not popular with the Republicans; he's not popular with conservatives in any way. And one of the reasons is it's not just that he's wrong on so many issues, he lectures us, he talks down to us. 'Oh, they'll come around; oh, I'll persuade them.' The man is supposed to represent us. 'Well, he's a real leader, you see, he doesn't change his positions.' That's not a real leader necessarily. If his positions are sound, that's one thing. If his positions aren't sound, that's actually a problem, that's a failure.

How can you look at the data respecting wave after wave immigration, illegal immigration, since the 1960's, the impact on the American job market, the impact on the American welfare system, the impact on the Americanization and assimilation, which apparently doesn't occur much anymore thanks by the way to liberal American citizens who hate the country -- how can you look at these things and continue to support more of it? And then denounce the American people who built this society? ...

We're not a nation of immigrants, we're a nation of citizens. We're a nation of citizens, some of whom are recent immigrants, some of whom are second, third, fifth, tenth generation, whatever, but you're a nation of citizens, not foreigners, citizens! I believe in taking the language back; I believe in challenging the irrationality and myth-making that goes on, ladies and gentlemen. But Jeb Bush, he's a fanatic! Jeb Bush is obsessed with open borders; he's obsessed with amnesty, and he's arrogant about it, because he's ideological about it..."


Related links: Jeb Bush: Illegal immigrants should be punished……BY EARNING LEGAL STATUS
Mark Levin: Jeb Bush The 'Dumbest Of The Bushes'

ADDENDUM: Mark Levin opens up on the GOP establishment's potential nominee, Jeb Bush, along with his stance on immigration, among other issues...
"Now who's the extremist? Who is it that's outside of the mainstream?"

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

LEVIN: Why the HELL would Republicans provide Obama with a blank check on trade?

This free trade deal is just another big bill negotiated and agreed to in secrecy. We need to protect our borders and economic system from Obama, so why would we give him even more power? We're caught up in phony terms; there is no fast track for free trade, only a fast track to give Obama the power to negotiate whatever deals he wants. ~ TheMarkLevinShow 5/12/15
Upside-down and ass-backwards...with another twist at the end. Too many masterminds and cowards in Washington, D.C. these days.

While Senate Democrats supposedly deal a stinging defeat to fast-track legislation for Obama's trade agenda, Senate Republicans, led by their chief quisling, Mitch McConnell, yet again push to hand a blank check to this imperial president...for cronyism's sake over the country's of course...
TRS: Mark Levin blasted Republicans today for voting, procedurally, to approve Obama’s fast track on ‘free’ trade. Levin says we know exactly who this man is and what his ideology is and asks why in hell Republicans would provide him with a blank check on trade. He said there is nothing ‘free’ about this and explains what he really thinks is going on.


"Here's what I see playing out here: In order to get the number of votes necessary to deliver Obama what he wants on this fast-track negotiation process, Mitch McConnell will cave to the demands of the radical left Democrats, who are opposing this for completely different reasons. And he will capitulate to them and do as they demand, whether it involves subsidies or whether it involves labor, whatever it involves. And he'll put it all together in one big push. And all they need is a handful of Republicans, which always come through, and the Democrats. And they'll not only give Obama what he wants, they'll give Big Labor what it wants, they'll give Big Immigration what they want. That's what he'll do, Mitch McConnell. You heard it here first, and I know I'm right."
Republicans, when's enough enough? Is there a threshold at all? 'Cause I'm pretty sure these enabling Benedicts have long crossed it.

Related links: Mark Levin CASTIGATES Obama and his dime-store Marxism about the rich
Mitch McConnell: Barack And I Are The New 'Odd Couple' – He Sends Me Notes

Levin TORCHES McConnell, GOP Senate for throwing in with Iran in the name of 'bipartisanship'
THEY'RE LYING! Both Political Parties!

ADDENDUM: From Wednesday's program...
Obama's proposed trade bill is being worked on in complete secrecy. Senators have to read the bill in a private room and must treat the document as if it's a piece of national security, and can't discuss it with anyone outside of the room. Mitch McConnell, and John Boehner are going along with Obama every step of the way; more capitulation and idiocy from the GOP leadership.
Related link: Mark Levin explains SUPER SECRET process Senators forced to comply with just to read OBAMA TRADE BILL
Democrats yield in Senate trade deal
EXCLUSIVE — SEN. RAND PAUL VISITS SECRET ROOM TO READ OBAMATRADE, CALLS FOR PUBLIC RELEASE OF DEAL TEXT
SEN. CRUZ OFFERS AMENDMENT TO BLOCK TRADE BILL FROM CHANGING IMMIGRATION LAW

Friday, May 8, 2015

Levin TORCHES McConnell, GOP Senate for throwing in with Iran in the name of 'bipartisanship'

Levin said it all on Thursday's program about the sad state of this dysfunctional party...led by a couple of Benedicts.
On Thursday's Mark Levin Show: If a party sways off in the wrong direction, we have a responsibility to defeat those doing it and take our party back. Mitch McConnell and John Boehner are running Congress like mobsters; cutting campaign funding of fellow Republicans and removing them from committees if they don’t bend to their will. Now the Senate has passed, 98-1, to surrender treaty powers to President Obama; instead of no sanction relief until Senate approval of a deal, sanction relief will begin after 30 days unless 2/3 Senate vote against it. Whatever deal Obama has will be the deal put in place while nobody in Congress will be able to change it, and McConnell knows it. Every day this Congress meets and Obama exercises power not belonging to him, we lose more and more liberty.



Mark Levin opened his show today blasting Mitch McConnell for siding with Obama and the Islamo-Nazis in Iran with this so-called Iran Nuclear Review Act and lying about it. He calls McConnell a ‘deserter,’ a ‘disgrace’ and ‘Benedict Arnold,’ and says McConnell put the Republican Party and bipartisanship above the national security of this country.
Related link: Mark Levin TORCHES Mitch McConnell for throwing in with Iran in the name of bipartisanship

ADDENDUM: And yeah, guys, we noticed...very disappointing.
AmericanThinker: As many of you know, I'm a big fan of Ted Cruz, but when he does something wrong, it's important to call him on it. In this case he, along with Marco Rubio and Rand Paul, voted for a bill that will effectively allow the President to lift sanctions on Iran.

Normally, here's how treaties work: the President negotiates a treaty with another country, like the deal he is negotiating with Iran over its nuclear weapons development. Once the treaty is negotiated, it's submitted to the Senate. Two thirds of the Senate has to vote to approve, or ratify, the treaty. If two thirds do not support it, it is not binding.

But the bill the Congress sent to the President turns things on its head. It will allow the President to lift sanctions on Iran, and unless Congress objects with a 2/3 vote within 30 days, the President's actions are allowed to stand. See the reversal? Formerly, the President needed a 2/3 vote to act, and now the Congress needs a 2/3 vote to stop him from acting. And be assured the Democrats will never let the Republicans get that many votes.

Cruz, Rubio and Paul fought this measure procedurely, at first... but then voted for it on final passage. Totally inexplicable. And totally wrong, from a policy and constitutional perspective.

Paradoxically, this bill is being sold as one that will give Congress more oversight and control over the negotiations. In practice it will do the opposite, and starts to raise questions about the national security judgment of Rubio, Paul, and Cruz. Only Tom Cotton of Arkansas ended up voting against the final bill. That's right--only one vote against. Always beware of near-unanimous votes in the Congress, because they are nearly unanimously bad results.
What in hell did McConnell hold over these guys?

Related links: GOP Failure Theater: the Iran nuclear vote, Cruz-Rubio edition
Mark Levin: Rand Paul has some explaining to do
Fraudulent Flake

Thursday, May 7, 2015

The 'tolerance' of Islam? ADDENDUM: I'll take FREE SPEECH!

How moderate...


TruthRevolt: On Fox News last night, Sean Hannity hosted what basically amounted to a verbal holy war between Islamic Imam Anjem Choudary and Pamela Geller. Choudary repeatedly stated that Geller knew the "consequences" for her actions, and that the consequences for her actions are death. He says that she isn't even good enough to be called a pig. He said America was the real murderer, that all will come under sharia law, that any who insult the prophet should receive "capital punishment."

This is a good time to remind our readers that people who talk about sharia in America are called conspiracy theorists, that Pamela Geller, who has been marked for death by Islam over cartoons, is the one being called "hateful" by our media, and that the official position of Smart People is that only a tiny few Muslims are terrorists and murderers.

As far as we know, Anjem Choudary isn't a terrorist. Using the standard the media and the President use, he would not be counted in the "less than one percent" of Muslims who commit acts of terror or join ISIS or kidnap girls in Africa. Yet here he is on a major news outlet telling the world, as he often does, that he believes the exact same thing as the terrorists.

Nobody is a terrorist until they are. But it is clear that support for the murder of cartoonists extends beyond just the murderers themselves. Believing that those who insult Mohammed should be put to death does not mean you are in some exclusive terrorist-only club, or that you are a member of ISIS. It is not uncommon. It is a widely shared conviction. And what's more, it's put into practice by people who aren't counted in that "one percent" we're supposed to find insignificant.
How sinister this guy's smirks are during an interview when his Ayatollah has said, "There are no jokes in Islam. There is no humor in Islam. There is no fun in Islam." No kidding!

Also, an excellent monologue from Megyn Kelly last night encapsulates where all Americans should be standing in solidarity (but for the party partisanship and lack of principle & common sense)...
TRS: Megyn Kelly opened her show tonight hitting back at the critics who have been blaming Pamela Geller for being too provocative with her drawing Muhammad event. Kelly says if drawing Muhammad at a private function is too provocative, then the terrorists are winning.

Related links: Here are a bunch of tolerant people calling Pamela Geller a ‘Zionist whore’ and Jew
Pamela Geller vs Imam on CNN Sunday Morning June 6, 2010
Drawing out the terrorists in our midst

ADDENDUM: Bill Whittle adds even broader (and most EXCELLENT) perspective...
TRS: In today’s version of Afterburner, Bill Whittle talks about the Garland terrorist attack and how the Islamo-Nazis didn’t just attack Pamela Geller and her drawing event, but they attacked all of us. And he takes on the folks who says ‘I believe in free speech, but…’.



Speech is either free or it isn't! The attack in Texas wasn't against Conservatives--it was against every American. Check out this important Afterburner to find out why Bill says you're DEAD wrong if you think the cartoonists at Charlie Hebdo or attendees at the free speech event in Texas had it coming to them for being too "provocative" by drawing Mohammed.