Truth, and the right ideas and right thinking that are based on the truth, are essential for a successful and meaningful life and for a good and healthy society. Without truth, life for individuals and for societies degenerates into chaos, nihilism, meaninglessness, hedonism, perversion, followed by collapse and then by eternal loss.
Truth is knowable – not all truth, but enough truth to enable a human being to lead a meaningful and successful life that will result in eternal life. Understanding essential realities is possible. I will outline for you the way I think, and why I think the way I think I pray that my thoughts, and the way I arrived at them, will provide a good and coherent philosophy for thinking and living for us all. First, we must start with God. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. God is. There is one God. The wise man places God at the very center of his thinking. God is the foundation of his wisdom. It is the fool, the man who may be smart, who may have a Ph. D., but can’t apply his knowledge properly, who has said in his heart, “there is no God.” If you don’t start with God as the foundation of your thinking, your intellectual and moral edifice won’t be constructed properly. You won’t think right, and you won’t live right. One wise man observed that the most important thing about any man is not how successful he is, or his social status, or how many friends he has, or his family or career, or wealth, but what deep in his heart, he thinks about God. Belief in God is entirely reasonable. It is based on very good evidences, logic, good arguments and reasons . Let me give you three arguments:
The Argument From Morality, Conscience, and Belief in God Human beings are inherently moral. I don’t mean that human beings are inherently good, and generally make the right moral choices, but rather that human beings intuitively have an idea of what is good or right that seems to be independent of us. Even when we don’t do what is right, we know what is right. Where did this sense of right and wrong come from? Only from the values learned from the societies in which we live? Also, there is a universal belief in God or gods in every society among mankind. Even after seventy years of atheistic communism belief in God in the former Soviet Union couldn’t be stamped out.
Where does this intuitive knowledge of God and morality come from? Where does man’s conscience come from? Isn’t it logical to think that there is a Supreme Being who is moral, who created this moral order, and gave us conscience and an intuitive awareness of Himself? Rabbi Paul asserts: When the Gentiles who do not have the Torah, do instinctively the things of the Torah, these, not having the Torah, are a Torah to themselves, in that they show the work of the Torah written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness, and their thoughts alternatively accusing them or else defending them (Romans 2:14-15).
The Argument From Existence and Personality The universe exists. It is not personal: it has no mind, will, or emotion. Either the universe always existed, or it had a beginning. The discoveries of modern science are indicating that the universe isn’t eternal, but in fact had a beginning. Either we believe that an impersonal, non-intelligent universe always existed, or that it created itself out of nothing (which is logically inconsistent, since by definition it’s impossible for anything to create itself out of nothing, since nothing can’t produce something), or a personal God created the universe. Since there is mind, will, emotion and personality in the universe, in the form of human beings, it make much more sense to agree with Moses that in the beginning the personal Creator God created the Heavens and the Earth.
The Argument From Intelligent Design Creation declares that there is compelling evidence that God exists: King David observed 3,000 years ago: The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands. Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night reveals knowledge (Psalm 19:1-2). 1,000 years later Rabbi Paul added: That which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse (Romans 1:19-20). There is no excuse for ignorance about God because there is sufficient evidence all around us. Just as we infer an intelligent designer for any product in which we discern evidence of purposeful adaption to some end, so too the universe is full of purposeful design, order and regularity. There are “laws of nature” that operate by precise mathematical formulas, which tells us that there is an intelligent Designer.
If you were walking on a path through a forest and saw a beautiful watch on the path that was in working order and keeping accurate time, would you assume that it came together over millions of years by chance processes? Since the watch gives evidence of intelligent design, you would correctly assume that a watchmaker purposely made it. If a visitor from outside the universe visited Earth, he would likewise correctly assume that there was a Creator. Since the universe is more complex than anything made by man, the obvious and necessary conclusion is that it must have a Powerful Designer and Creator who is far greater than man.
Kerby Anderson, the President of Probe Ministries, informs us in a recent letter: There are “new advances in the area of intelligent design. Astronomers are discovering that we have a ‘just right’ universe. The discoveries remind me of the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. One chair was too big, one was too small, and one was ‘just right.’ Scientists have begun to uncover evidence that the universe is ‘just right.’ They have found 29 fine-tuned parameters to the universe which are ‘just right.’ These would include such things as the constants in equations for gravity, electromagnetism, strong and weak nuclear forces, and even the ratio of proton to electron mass. If any of these parameters were just a little off, the universe as we know it wouldn’t exist!
They have also discovered another 51 fine-tuned parameters for our galaxy, solar system, and planet. These would include: the distance from the sun, the size, temperature, and type of the sun, the Earth’s size, axial tilt, rotation speed and moon. They have even discovered the importance of planets like Jupiter and Saturn in our solar system. Of course, the probability of all these parameters coming together by chance is astronomical. Scientists calculating these probabilities are coming to the stark conclusion that the presence of any life in the universe is a highly improbable event.
Scientists are also making similar discoveries in the area of biology. Much of this has been documented in a book by Michael Behe entitled Darwin’s Black Box. Michael Behe (who is a biochemistry professor at Lehigh University) introduced the concept of ‘irreducible complexity.’
“In simple terms, this idea applies to any system of interacting parts in which the removal of any one part destroys the function of the entire system. An irreducibly complex system, then, requires each and every component to be in place before it will function.
“As a simple example of irreducible complexity, Behe presents the humble mousetrap. It contains 5 interdependent parts which allow it to catch mice: the wooden platform, the spring, the hammer (the bar which crushes the mouse against the wooden base), the holding bar, and a catch. Each of these components is absolutely essential for the function of the mousetrap. For instance, if you remove the catch, you cannot set the trap and it will never catch mice, no matter how long they may dance over the contraption. Remove the spring, and the hammer will flop uselessly back and forth-certainly not much of a threat to the little rodents. Of course, removal of the holding bar will ensure that the trap never catches anything because there will again be no way to arm the system.
“Now, note what this implies: an irreducibly complex system cannot come about in a gradual manner. One cannot begin with a wooden platform and catch a few mice, then add a spring, catching a few more mice than before, etc. No, all the components must be in place before it functions at all. A step-by-step approach to constructing such a system will result in a useless system until all the components have been added. The system requires all the components to be added at the same time, in the right configuration, before it works at all.
“How does irreducible complexity apply to biology? Behe notes that early this century, before biologists really understood the cell, they had a very simplistic model of its inner workings. Without the electron microscopes and other advanced techniques that now allow scientists to peer into the inner workings of the cell, it was assumed that the cells was a fairly simple blob of protoplasm. The living cell was a “black box” – something that could be observed to perform various functions while its inner workings were unknown and mysterious. Therefore, it was easy, and justifiable, to assume that the cell was a simple collection of molecules. But not anymore. Technological advances have provided detailed information about the inner workings of the cell. Michael Denton, in his book Evolution: A Theory in Crisis, states “Although the tiniest bacterial cells are incredibly small, weighing less than 10^-12 grams, each is in effect a veritable microminiaturized factory containing thousands of exquisitely designed pieces of intricate molecular machinery, made up altogether of one hundred thousand million atoms, far more complicated than any machine built by man and absolutely without parallel in the non-living world.” In a word, the cell is complicated. Very complicated.
“In fact, Michael Behe asserts that the complicated biological structures in a cell exhibit the exact same irreducible complexity that we saw in the mousetrap example. In other words, they are all-or-nothing: either everything is there and it works, or something is missing and it doesn’t work. As we saw before, such a system cannot be constructed in a gradual manner – it simply won’t work until all the components are present, and Darwinism has no mechanism for adding all the components at once. Remember, Darwin’s mechanism is one of gradual mutations leading to improved fitness and survival. A less-than-complete system of this nature simply will not function, and it certainly won’t help the organism to survive. Indeed, having a half-formed and hence non-functional system would actually hinder survival and would be selected against.” From Irreducible Complexity: The Challenge to the Darwinian Evolutionary Explanations of many iochemical Structures (http://acs.ucsd.edu/~idea/irredcomplex.htm) In an article titled, “Shapes, Numbers, Patterns, and the Divine Proportion in God’s Creation (Institute For Creation Research, Impact No. 354 December 2002) Fred Willson, informs us that in God’s creation, “there exists a ‘Divine Proportion’ that is exhibited in a multitude of shapes, numbers, and patterns whose relationship can only be the result of the omnipotent, good, and all-wise God of Scripture. This Divine Proportion – existing in the smallest to the largest parts, in living and also in non-living things – reveals the awesome handiwork of God and His interest in beauty, function, and order.
Mr. Wilson begins with shapes, then discusses how a numbering pattern and a ratio (the Divine Proportion) are an inherent part of these shapes and patterns and are ubiquitous throughout creation. He begins with a shape with which we are all familiar. It is the spiral commonly seen in shells. By taking a careful look at that spiral (the chambered nautilus is probably the clearest example) you will observe that as it gets larger, it retains its identical form. Since the body of the organism grows in the path of a spiral that is equiangular and logarithmic, its form never changes. The beauty of this form is commonly called the “golden spiral.”
This spiral is visible in things as diverse as: hurricanes, spiral seeds, the cochlea of the human ear, ram’s horn, sea-horse tail, growing fern leaves, DNA molecule, waves breaking on the beach, tornados, galaxies, the tail of a comet as it winds around the sun, whirlpools, seed patterns of sunflowers, daisies, dandelions, and in the construction of the ears of most mammals.
This spiral follows a precise mathematical pattern. We will first look at this spiral in sunflowers. By looking carefully at a sunflower you will observe two sets of spirals (rows of seeds or florets) spiraling in opposite directions.
When these spiral rows are counted in each direction, you will discover that in the overwhelming majority of the cases that their numbers, depending upon the size of the flower, will be of the following ratio: if small, 34 and 55; if medium 55 and 89; if large 89 and 144.
These numbers are part of the Fibonacci numbering sequence, a pattern discovered around A.D. 1200 by Leonardo Pisa (historically known as Fibonacci). Each succeeding number is the sum of the two preceding numbers. The sequence of these numbers is 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144, 233, ad infinitum. This numbering pattern reveals itself in various ways throughout all of nature.
When the smaller number of this pattern is divided into the larger number adjacent to it, the ratio will always be approximately 1.618; if the larger one adjacent to it divides the smaller number, the ratio will be very close to 0.618. This ratio is only true for this set of numbers. This ratio has been called historically the Divine Proportion or Golden Ratio. This ratio has served mankind in three ways: it provides beauty, function, and reveals how marvelous God is.
Why did Phideas, the Greek sculptor, and many others in ancient Greece and Egypt use this ratio in designing their works of art? Because this ratio has been found to be remarkably pleasing to the human eye, it produces what is called a Golden Rectangle. If the short side of the rectangle is 1, the long side will be 1.618. This rectangular shape was used in the designing of the Parthenon in Greece and as the basic shape for many of their numerous pictures, vases, doorways, windows, statues, etc. It appears in the Great Pyramid of Egypt. The United Nations building is a golden rectangle. Many of the things you use are (approximately) patterned after the golden rectangle – credit cards, playing cards, postcards, light switch plates, writing pads, 3-by-5 and 5-by-8 cards, etc.
Artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, Van Gogh, Vermeer, John Singer Sargent, Monet, Whistler, Renoir, and others employed the golden proportion in their works. They would “take a blank easel and divide it into areas based on the golden proportions to determine the placement of horizons, trees, and so on.” Why the golden proportion? Art forms can be either of static or dynamic symmetry. In static symmetry the lines have definite measurements whereas in dynamic symmetry it is the proportioning of the areas that is given emphasis. It implies “growth, power, movement. It gives animation and life to an artist’s work . . . rather than the effect of stillness and quiet” of static symmetry. This is the appeal of the golden proportion.
Another area of great interest is the occurrence of Fibonacci numbers in the spiral arrangement of leaves around a plant’s stem (called phyllotaxis). This spiral pattern is observed by viewing the stem from directly above, and noting the arc of the stem form one leaf base to the next, and the fraction of the stem circumference which is inscribed. In each case the numbers are Fibonacci numbers. Examples: In an elm the arc is 1/2 the circumference; in beech and hazel, 1/3; apricot, oak, 2/5; in pear and poplar, 3/8; in almond and pussy willow, 5/13; and in some pines either 5/21 or 13/34.
Why did God arrange them this way? This pattern assures that each leaf will receive its maximum exposure to sunlight and air without shading or crowding other leaves.
Not only do we discover this pattern in leaf arrangements, but it is also found in the arrangement of flower petals. Examples: a lily has 3 petals, yellow violet 5, delphinium 8, mayweed 13, aster 21, pyrethrum 34, helenium 55, and michaelmas daisy 89. With such a great variety of spiral ratios in leaf and petal arrangement, no one has any reason to get bored with God’s creation.
When we realize that the information to produce these spirals and numbers in living things is stored in the DNA, should we then be surprised to find that the DNA molecule is 21 angstroms in width and the length of one full turn in its spiral is 34 angstroms, both Fibonacci numbers? The DNA molecule is literally one long stack of golden rectangles.
In the area of very large phenomena when the time period of each planet’s revolution around the sun is compared in round numbers to the one adjacent to it, their fractions are Fibonacci numbers! Beginning with Neptune and moving inward toward the sun, the ratios are 1/2, 1/3, 2/5, 3/8, 5/13, 8/21, 13/34. These are the same as the spiral arrangement of leaves on plants!
These shapes, numbers, spirals, and the divine proportion are ubiquitous in their presence throughout all of creation. They are found in living and nonliving phenomena. Their symmetry, beauty, and mathematical preciseness are evident in every aspect of nature. Although absolute perfection is not found in all of these (due to the effects of Adam’ sin), their very presence virtually everywhere and in everything argues against their having occurred by blind chance or evolutionary processes. The only rational conclusion is that the Creator of the universe is a personal, intelligent Being, who created these things as a visible fingerprint of His invisible, yet personal existence. Evidences that the Bible is the Divinely Inspired Word of God The powerful and intelligent Creator of the Universe, who made man with the ability to communicate, is Himself able to communicate. He can reveal Himself to us, and speak to us, and make His desires known to us. God has in fact communicated very clearly to humanity through the divinely inspired Scriptures, which includes the Tenach and the New Testament.
We’ve seen that through Creation, and through nature we can know that God exists, and that He is Person, and that He is powerful, and intelligent and creative. But, we can know far more about God by means of the Bible, both Old and New Testaments. There are good reasons to believe that the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God.
One evidence that the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God is the fact that it is one of the few books that claims to be the Word of God. The phrases, “Thus says the Lord,” or “the Word of the Lord” are used hundreds of times. It claims to be the uniquely inspired communication from our Creator to us: All Scripture is inspired by God (2 Timothy 3:16).
Another evidence that the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God is its amazing unity. It was written by forty authors from different backgrounds over 1,500 years and yet reads like it was written by one author. One would expect that if a book was truly the Word of God.
Another indication that the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God is the fact that it has affected the world more than any other book ever written. It’s the most widely published book ever written. It has profoundly affected law, philosophy, politics, literature, music, the arts and science. One would expect that if a book was truly the Word of God.
Another evidence that the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God is its unique ability to tell the future. The Koran doesn’t predict the future, and as far as I know, the Hindu or the Buddhist books don’t. The Bible is the only religious book that accurately predicts the future, years, centuries and even millennia, in advance. In fact God claims, I am Adonai (the Lord), that is my Name; I will not give My glory to another nor my praise to graven images. Behold the former things have come to pass, now I declare new things; before they spring forth I proclaim them to you (Isaiah 42:8-9, see also Isaiah 44:6-8).
The Lord claims to tell us the future ahead of time for the express purpose of demonstrating that He is the true God, so that we will believe in Him. The Bible’s ability to predict future events lets us know that God, who is not limited by time, was in communication with Israel’s prophets, with Yeshua and His Emissaries.
Archeology has shown over and over that the Bible is historically accurate. What the Bible says about persons and events that it describes have been proved over and over again to be true.
The Bible reflects accurate scientific knowledge of the universe. Some examples: the Earth is round (Isaiah 40:22); the Earth is suspended in space without support (Job 26:7); the stars are countless (Genesis 15:15); the water cycle, sea currents (Psalm 8:8); living things reproduce after their kind; many insights into health, hygiene, diet, physiology (such as the importance of blood, e.g., Leviticus 17:11, the eighth day after birth being high in blood coagulant); the first and second laws of thermodynamics (Isaiah 51:6)
The Bible describes reality better than any other philosophy or religion or worldview. It tells us why the universe has laws, design, order, complexity, simplicity, elegance, and beauty: because there is a Great Designer. It tells us why there is beauty, love, wisdom, justice, truth and personality: these are not the results of chance processes, and random activity, but they come from God who has these attributes. It tells us why there is evil, suffering, death, injustice in the world: it’s due to mankind’s sin and resultant alienation from God. It tells us why there is beauty and ugliness mixed together, happiness and sadness, order and chaos, pain and joy. It tells us that life can be ultimately meaningful, full of purpose and eternal significance.
The Bible was meant to be read and understood by the average human being who can read. It is understandable if the Golden Rule of Interpretation is applied to it: “If the literal sense makes sense, don’t seek any other sense” – a non-literal sense. There are non-literal passages (allegories, parables, poetry, symbols, hyperbole, etc.), but those are easily recognizable.
People have heard that the text of the Bible has been corrupted over the centuries, but the Hebrew Scriptures have been meticulously transmitted, as the Dead Sea Scrolls demonstrate. Thousands of New Testament documents, some of them written very early, in the First and Second Centuries, show that the text of the New Testament has not been corrupted, but has been faithfully transmitted.
The Bible is true. It is accurate. It is real history. It means what it says. Since God exists, and He is personal, and able to communicate, and can make His desires known to us, and has made His desires known to us through the Bible, we have an obligation to follow His expressed desires. God and His Word should affect every subsequent political and moral and religious decision that we make.
I believe in the Trinity – Father, Son and the Holy Spirit of the Father and of the Son. I believe that Yeshua is Messiah, and Lord, and the Son of God, and that He is fully God and fully man. Why do I believe in Him? Because of the amazing Messianic Prophecies in the Hebrew Scriptures, that are meticulously fulfilled in Him. I believe in Him because of His resurrection, which was described by many eyewitnesses. I believe in Him because of His impact on the world. I believe in Him because of His impact on millions of others. I believe in Him because of His impact on me.
There is a Heaven, which is a very real place, which can be gained, and there is a Hell, which is a very real place, which can be avoided. I believe that it is possible to live forever, in a resurrected and glorified body, with God and Messiah, with the saints and good angels, with everlasting happiness. I believe that most of mankind will miss out on life, and experience the Second Death in the Lake of Fire.
There are good angels who serve God and help us. There are evil, fallen angels who oppose God and try to destroy us.
I believe in Dispensationalism. Dispensationalism recognizes that God has made different demands of different peoples at different times. It sees a progression in salvation history, a progression in the revelation of God’s will. Dispensationalism is based on two main principles. First, it is based on a consistent, normal, literal, everyday meaning to the Word of God, unless the text tells you otherwise. The second key principle of Dispensationalism arises from the first: there is a consistent distinction in the Scriptures between Israel and the Church, and although there is a connection between the two, and there is a relationship between Israel and the Church, Israel and the Church are two separate entities. Therefore, Israel means Israel and the Church means the Church, and the Church does not mean Israel, and Israel does not mean the Church. Dispensationalism insists that every promise God made to Jewish people which has not been fulfilled will be fulfilled, and fulfilled literally sometime in the future.
History is headed toward a goal. It has a beginning, a middle and an end. We are getting closer to the culmination. There will be a one world government, headed by an evil world dictator, the anti-Messiah. The true Messiah, Yeshua, will literally and physically return to Earth, and set up His Kingdom, which will last for 1,000 years. After that, this universe will be destroyed. That will be followed by the Day of Judgment, where every human being will give an account of the things they have done, and the things they should have done but didn’t do.
I believe that the Jewish people are the Chosen People, chosen by God to help the world return to the one true God; find salvation and redemption from sin and death and alienation from God, who is the Source of Life, Goodness, Happiness and Blessing.
The Jewish people were chosen to bring the world the knowledge about one God, and the Word of God, and the principles of atonement and reconciliation with God through Temple, Priest and the blood of the sacrifices, which would ultimately culminate in the Messiah, the Final Sacrifice, the truest Temple of God, where God most fully dwells, and our High Priest who brings God to us, and us to God.
The religions of the world, apart from true Christianity and Messianic Judaism, are evidence not of truth and salvation, but of religious confusion and spiritual death. The many religions of the world show how confused we are religiously, how far we from God, far from truth, and darkened in our religious understanding.
Non-Messianic Judaism is based on a broken covenant which cannot save us. There is no Temple and there are no sacrifices by which we can be brought near to God and experience genuine atonement. While most of the Jewish people reject Messiah, and we are far from Him and therefore far from God and salvation, and not part of the New Covenant, neither the Jewish people nor the nation of Israel should be mistreated. Christians should love and stand by Israel and the Jewish people. I believe that the ongoing existence of the Jewish people is another strong evidence of God’s reality, and the inspiration of the Holy Scriptures. I believe that the Land of Israel belongs to the people of Israel.
Catholicism has corrupted the Gospel, and is a false religious system. If there are individual Catholics who are saved, it is in spite of the Catholic Church, not because of the Catholic Church. If there are Catholics who are born-again, they will share the truth about salvation based on the finished work of the Messiah, salvation that comes to us by grace alone, and is experienced through faith alone, and based on the Scriptures alone. They will tell share the truth with others within the Catholic Church, and eventually find themselves excluded from that institution.
I believe that the majority of people who call themselves Christians are not genuinely Christians, are not born again, not indwelt by the Holy Spirit, and not saved. As Moishe Rosen wittily observed, “Being born into a Christian home doesn’t make you a Christian, any more than being born into a bakery would make you a bagel!”
Islam is not a religion of peace. I am skeptical that there is such a thing as “Moderate Islam.” Islam wants to destroy Israel, and what remains of Western Civilization, and eventually take over the world.
Tolerance does not mean that you have to accept all ideas, religions, philosophies, worldviews, opinions, lifestyles and practices as being equally true, equally valid, equally beneficial. Tolerance means being gracious to others, even when you disagree with them and know they are wrong. Tolerance means helping and cooperating where possible.
There are physical laws that the Creator has designed into the universe, and there are moral and spiritual laws built into the universe as well. There are absolutes. There are things that are right, and things that are wrong. God has a right to tells us, “You shall not” and “You shall.” Since He is our Creator and our Redeemer, and is far wiser and better than we are, the essence of “right” is obedience to what God has revealed.
The more an individual or a nation lines itself up with God’s wise and true laws, the more success, blessing, reward, happiness they will have, and the better off they will be. The more an individual or a nation rejects God’s laws, the more confused and the more messed up they will be.
For example, what human beings think about God affects their behavior and their morals and ethics, or lack thereof. If a person believes that this universe began with an impersonal Big Bang, and will continue for billions of years, and then experience either a gradual heat death, ultimate entropy, so that there is no activity, or that the universe will start contracting, and all the galaxies will begin to reverse themselves, and everything will return to its beginning point – one singularity, where perhaps it will form another impersonal Big Bang; if a person believes he started off as a one-celled organism, and is ultimately nothing more than glorified slime mold, an advanced sea slug, a meaningless bit of temporary matter, and that when we die we die, because there is no after-life, no God, and therefore no moral or spiritual absolutes, no “thou shalt nots,” no Day of Judgment when each human being will give an account of his actions to His Creator, no Heaven to be gained, no Hell to be avoided, no punishment, no rewards, no eternal life that is possible, then a person’s motivation to strive to do what is right will almost always be less than what it should be. With hundreds of millions having a worldview like this, no wonder there are so much unhappiness, so much mental instability, so many suicides, crimes, murders, so much sexual immorality, so many abortions, so much drug and alcohol abuse! We are reaping the consequences of decades of bad ideas about God, and morality.
Mankind’s greatest problem is sin – not economics, not politics, not terrorism, not war. We are dead in our sins, alienated from God, estranged from the One who made us, from the One who is the source of life, goodness, blessing and happiness. We are in need the most desperate need of redemption and salvation that He alone provides.
I believe that due to the Fall of Man, the Rebellion of Adam and Eve against their wonderful and good Creator, than mankind has been corrupted. Sin has negatively affected every aspect of our being: body, soul, spirit, mind, emotion, will, sexuality. Wars, rape, suicide, stealing, murder, lying, cheating, despair, boredom, a sense of meaningless, a sense that things aren’t quite right (even in the best of times), physical illness, mental illness, the need for police, courts, judges, jail, prison, locks, keys, all show this alienation from God, this alienation from each other, from nature, and from ourselves. Sin has caused all this.
Mankind’s greatest problem is sin, but sin can be overcome. We can be reconciled to our Creator and overcome sin in a two-fold way – by faith in God and offering a God-ordained sacrifice. First, we must find out who God really is, and really come to know Him, and then we must place our faith in Him. We must trust Him. We don’t invent our own ideas about God; we don’t come up with our own thoughts about who this Creator is, we must come to know Him as He truly is. Second, an innocent victim, a God-ordained sacrifice, must shed its blood, and die in our place. In the Torah, animals were sacrificed at the Temple in Jerusalem to provide atonement. Now, atonement, redemption, forgiveness, and reconciliation with God, overcoming sin and becoming acceptable to the Almighty only comes about through the sacrifice of God’s Son – Yeshua the Messiah. He is the one and only way of salvation for Jew and Gentile.
Apart from a close, personal relationship with God, and salvation through the Messiah, human life will turn out to be so short, so insubstantial and meaningless. But with a close, personal relationship with God, embracing our wonderful Messiah and Savior, who sacrificed His life for us, human life will turn out to be everlasting, and eternally good and significant.
Men and women are equal in value in the sight of God, and have equal access to God, and yet men and women are different. There are distinct roles for men and women. For example, women should not be rabbis or pastors. The man should be the head of the family. Men should be the ones that go to war. Women should not be in combat. If women are married and have children, their primary responsibility is to stay at home and raise the children while the men go off to work and support the family.
Sexuality is a powerful drive within us, but it needs to be restrained. We are not animals ruled by instinct, that have to mate whenever the urge comes upon them. The sexual drive is very strong, but it can and must be submitted to God’s purposes. We are to use our sexuality within marriage (and marriage is to be between one man and one woman) for pleasure and for bonding between husband and wife, and for the production of godly children, and Our sexual desires must remain within marriage, which will help us build strong families, and stable homes, and raise righteous.
I believe that homosexuality is wrong, that is a perversion of sexuality, that it is against the laws of nature (male goes with female, male body parts go with female body parts) and against the laws of God, and that it damages the people who engage in it – physically, and makes them less than what they should be. It harms the society that tolerates it.
Abortion is our worst national sin. About 4,000 children growing in the womb are killed every day. Abortion is murder. It is the taking of a human life that is already in existence and growing, and we don’t have that right. You can not take a wrong and make it into a right. There is no right to murder! We must not vote for any candidate who is pro-abortion, or favorably disposed to abortion or wanting to keep the status-quo regarding abortion. Don’t tell me that you like his other policies, or that he will be good for the economy or good for the nation. That same reasoning was used by Germans who argued that Hitler was good for the nation. But it came at the expense of 6 million Jewish people who were murdered, along with millions of others. I tell you that a man is not good for the nation if comes at the expense of the weak and helpless and innocent being murdered! I don’t care how talented or charming he is, if he is pro-abortion he is not fit to hold any public office! If you vote for men and women who are pro-abortion, or favorably disposed toward abortion or want to keep the status-quo regarding abortion, you are partners with them in murder, you share in their guilt, and God will surely punish you. Those women who have committed this crime, and the men who pressured and encouraged them to do this evil, and not supported them in their time of need, can be completely forgiven – through the blood of the Messiah, and if they confess their sins.
God made this world, and He place mankind in charge of it. We are to be good managers of creation, and treat it with respect. In that sense, each one of us should be an environmentalist. We should not waste, we should recycle where we can, we should conserve where we can. But I also believe that it is OK to eat meat.
When it comes to government and politics, and how we order society, I am a monarchist. My first loyalty is to God the Father who is the High King of Kings, and to King Messiah Yeshua. I am citizen of the Kingdom of God. If a human government contradicts God’s government, I must obey God rather than man. But, until Messiah Yeshua returns to Earth, where He will establish His throne, sets up His Kingdom from His capitol city in Jerusalem and rules over Israel and the nations with perfect justice and righteousness, I prefer a democratic form of republican government. I prefer the people vote in good representatives who are accountable to the people, and who will make good and wise and godly decisions, so that we may lead a good and peaceful life.
Government is good and necessary, but needs to be limited, and it needs to be constantly monitored. Humans and their institutions are so easily capable of being corrupted. Power corrupts and absolute power tends to corrupt absolutely. There is only a thin veneer of civilization that covers us. Under the right circumstances, we can revert to the barbaric (like the Nazis, like rape of Nanking perpetrated by the Japanese on the Chinese). Human government can become corrupt and oppressive and tyrannical. Government constantly needs to be watched by an active, involved and informed populace.
Christians and Messianic Jews need to vote, and be actively involved in the political process. Evil triumphs when good men and women do nothing.
In the United States, we have freedom of religion, and freedom of expression, and our religious convictions can and should be expressed within the political realm. It is our right, and it our duty, to bring God and His Word and His truths into all of our moral and political and economic considerations, and don’t let anyone convince you otherwise.
I am a conservative. I want to conserve traditional ideas, institutions and values. I believe that there is much in Western Civilization, in the Judeo-Christian culture, that is worth conserving. The liberal movement accomplished many good things. I commend liberalism for helping to liberate us from many social and economic injustices, but I also believe that much of current liberalism has gone too far. It is trying to liberate us from things that are right, liberate us from Biblical morality, free us from God, liberate us from religion, free us from absolutes of right and wrong. I believe that there is a way of fighting for the truly oppressed and for social justice without rejecting God, without abandoning true religion and basic morality.
We are terribly over-governed and over taxed. We should slash and burn government programs, power and spending. I want less government, less programs, fewer government agencies and bureaucrats, less taxes, less dependence on government programs and handouts. I want more freedom, more personal responsibility, more family and religious community responsibility.
I think that taxes need to be limited. If the Lord only asks for 10 percent, certainly the State is not entitled to more than that! And yet, the State gobbles up 40 or 50 percent of our taxes, and that makes you a virtual slave of the State. If the State can’t live on 10 percent, then it is doing functions that it should not be doing. We should start from the premise that all forms of government – federal, state and local, only deserve 10 percent of our income. I’m in favor of a 10 percent flat tax (get rid of the IRS or greatly diminish it) or a 10 percent sales tax that is distributed between state, local and federal government.
Welfare for any extended length of time is destructive. It causes dependent behaviors, and breaks down the family structure. Providing for the needs of the poor is primarily the job of the family, the church or synagogue, or private charities. I believe in compassion, and sharing with the poor, and I also believe that those who are able to work, and don’t, shouldn’t eat.
I believe that capital punishment is right and necessary. God said that He would punish His Chosen People if the allowed blood defile the Land of Israel. It defiles the land to leave a murderer alive. God has given the authority to inflict capital punishment to human beings. It is a legitimate function of government. But, we should make very sure, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the man is guilty. If we are not sure beyond a reasonable doubt, let him serve life in prison without parole. Speaking of punishment, for many crimes, rather than prison, which can make a man worse, I am open to the idea of corporal punishment – like is practiced in some parts of the world. The offender is
given a certain amount of hits with a rod. It doesn’t cause permanent damage. It’s painful, it’s over, it’s done, it’s fast, he learns his lesson. This has to be better than 2 years, 5 years, ten years in a prison, where homosexual perversion is rampant, and men generally get worse – not better, and rehabilitation rarely takes place. Did you know that the Lord’s penal system did not include jails? There was restitution for some crimes, corporal punishment for others, and capital punishment for the worse crimes.
Nationalism causes problems, but Internationalism can cause even greater ones. I am deeply suspicious of the UN. The UN provides very little moral authority. Two thirds of the member nations of the United Nation are ruled by corrupt dictators. Something like one third of all the UN resolutions that have ever been made have been against Israel! I don’t want the United States’ foreign policy determined by that organization.
When it comes to economics, I prefer a gracious and beneficent kind of capitalism as opposed to socialism – the forced redistribution of wealth. I believe in the right to own private property, and that private property rights must be respected. Since human nature is fallen, we are selfish by nature, and we work harder for our own interest. Capitalism recognizes this, and harnesses it. Capitalism is superior to socialism, providing that the capitalists show concern and compassion for the worker and for the poor. People need to be paid a fair wage that they can live on and support their family with dignity. Capitalism can become corrupted. It needs to be restrained. When the wealth of a society is unfairly distributed, so that the many are poor and wretched, and the few are rich, something is seriously wrong and must be rectified. I aspire to be a compassionate capitalist.
I believe our money should be backed by something real, particularly gold and silver, and not by mere words and promises. The problem with paper money which is not backed by silver or gold is that governments that won’t live within their means will simply print more paper money, which dilutes the value of the money already in circulation. More money available to purchase the same amount of goods and services causes inflation, which is detrimental to a currency. Most paper monies have become worthless over time, and I think that will happen to the US dollar as well.
I am distrustful of Fractional Reserve Banking, which by its very nature, is inherently unstable. Banks take your money, and lend it out to others, but they are able to loan out more than they take in. They only keep a small percentage in reserve, so if there is a crisis, or people lose confidence in the system, and everyone wants their money back at the same time, it’s not possible
A little debt may be OK, but too much debt brings financial ruin. When you are in debt, it is the moral and ethical and right thing to pay it off as soon as possible. When you are in debt, buying non-essentials and luxuries is immoral!
Passing a huge debt onto future generations is immoral. Parents are to save to help their children. They are not to take from their children to waste on their pleasures. Our nation has way too much debt, and I blame both Democratic and Republican parties, and every administration for the past 40 years.
I am particularly disappointed in the current administration for spending too much; and I blame us – the American people, for allowing this situation to continue and get worse. Debt levels are way too high – national debt, state and local debt, corporate debt and personal debt. I’m convinced that we are headed for serious economic pain. If you take today’s debt ($7.35 trillion immediate debt, not including long-term liabilities) and divide it by 280 million people you come up with roughly $26,000 of for every man, woman and child in this country. For a family of four that is roughly $100,000 worth of debt per family.
According to a recent article by Walter Williams, “the gimmicked accounting standards (my comment: they are gimmicked by not counting long term liabilities like Social Security) as established during the Johnson era, and as used today for official, unified budget reporting, show a 2003 deficit of $374.3 billion… Including accounting for Social Security and related areas, the 2003 deficit balloons to $3,702 billion, or $3.7 trillion. The accounting reflects no adjustment for the new, more expensive Medicare program. Beyond the $3.7 trillion deficit in 2003, however, the numbers get even worse, because the shadow deficit has been taking its toll ever since the Johnson era. According to the Treasury’s 2003 financial statement, the U.S. government has a negative net worth of $34.8 trillion” (article posted on the Prudent Bear Website (www.PrudentBear.com, September 8, 2004).
Our economy is not healthy. We have been living beyond our means. We have been devaluing our money. We are creating inflation. We have been propping up the markets and the economy by artificial stimulation. I believe that the United States is headed for economic disaster.
I believe in Creation. I believe that the universe is relatively young. There was a great flood in the time of Noah, roughly 5,000 years ago. It explains the fossils, and the fact that most of the Earth’s land surface is made up of sedimentary rock. Oil, coal, salt deposits, the billions of dead animals and fish that became fossils, the Grand Canyon, the sedimentary rock that covers most of the continents, were all formed by massive water action at this time.
Evolution is not true. It is bad science. Species do not evolve now, and have never evolved. Old species die out. New species do not arise. God designed his creatures with plenty of genetic information to be able to adapt to various environments. Genetic information can be lost over time, but it is never gained.
This is the way I think, and why I think the way I think. May these thoughts, and the way I arrived at them, provide a good and coherent philosophy for thinking and living for us all.