Wednesday, August 26, 2015

When Life Begins …and Ends?

A few weeks ago the Fox News Channel hosted and moderated the first Republican 2016 Presidential debate. The saddest theme of the debate was the incredulous drilling of the candidates over their pro-life views. This was profoundly sad since the weeks leading up to the debate were marked by the revelation of several undercover videos that undeniably exposed the barbaric activities of Planned Parenthood whereby they admitted to illegally harvesting whole organs from live babies in the womb which they actively sell for cash (see separate related post on this subject HERE). A reasonable person might think that this grotesque injustice would be a much more germane topic from which to grill candidates of all political stripes. But, of course, in our depraved culture, no such grilling occurs. Rather, we deem it more important to grill candidates about a fictitious “war on women” while babies (including female babies) continue to be slaughtered at a breathtaking pace.

During the week that followed this debate, CNN’s Chris Cuomo interviewed Republican candidate, Marco Rubio, on the same subject. Aside from the glaring fact that Cuomo came off like a blood-bent apologist for Planned Parenthood, Rubio in his faithfulness to human life was brilliant. When Cuomo personally attacked Rubio as “backwards-looking,” Rubio responded, “The value of life is timeless. The idea that a human life is worthy of the protection of our laws is not something that over time anybody should evolve on.” This pressed a button in Cuomo – a button marked “START SHOUTING LIBERAL EPITHETS THAT MAKE NO SENSE UNTIL YOUR OPPONENT BACKS DOWN.” In the end, Cuomo exposed his bias by shouting repeatedly, “Science has not decided [life is] at conception!” To which Rubio calmly declared, “Absolutely it has.” Has science decided when life begins? If so, has science declared what they have decided about when life begins? Then again, does science get to decide? Or, does that honor belong exclusively to the Author of life?

Well, science has actually spoken in defense of what Rubio said and 100% opposed to what Cuomo said. To that end, published an article on January 8, 2015 revealing exactly what science has declared about when life begins. They lifted 41 quotes from medical textbooks. That’s right, not just a few quotes but 41 quotes, and from the medical experts that author the textbooks that train our country’s physicians. I won’t copy them all in this post, but you can read each one and their specific reference HERE. I will share one example from “The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology”, 7th edition. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders, 2003. pp. 16, 2: “Human life begins at fertilization, the process during which a male gamete or sperm (spermatozoa development) unites with a female gamete or oocyte (ovum) to form a single cell called a zygote. This highly specialized, totipotent cell marked the beginning of each of us as a unique individual…A zygote is the beginning of a new human being (i.e., an embryo).” And, there is so much more from where that came. Please check out the article and be encouraged that Chris Cuomo and the rest of the deceiving liberals are lying to all of us. Science has spoken very clearly, explicitly, and conclusively that human life begins at conception.

So, with that obvious fact behind us, unfortunately that is only half of the battle. The other half of the battle is determining when life ends. For a telling analogy of answering that question poorly, we should turn to Nazi Germany. The core problem with Hitler’s Nazism is that Hitler (a man) presumed the role of God in determining when life must end, even for the innocent. And, in his gas chambers and concentration camps it is estimated that the human carnage of Jews alone was approximately six million souls. Hitler played God in determining the end of six million innocent lives. This was genocide. This was murder. This was the result of a total devaluing of human life. But, we are worse – far worse than he. In America alone, we are committing the same error. Instead of one man playing God, we are all playing God - and we have ended the lives of over 50 million innocent babies.

The spiritual problem with abortion is that innocent human life is killed by one of us. It is one thing for a murderer to be executed by the State or for someone to be killed in war. It is wholly another for a third person to decide to end the life of an innocent human being via our healthcare system. There is no comparison at all. And, the twisted moral determination behind this is predicated upon our human answers to both questions of when life begins and when life ends. And, we have poorly answered both questions. We know the obvious science that clearly, explicitly and undoubtedly states that human life begins at conception. Yet, we are lying about this fact by shouting that it doesn’t. Then, on the basis of that lie, we insert our hands and knives into mothers' wombs and brutally and fatally mangle innocent babies. In so doing, we have used our lying answer of when life begins to cover up our willful, self-idolatrous determination of when these innocent babies' lives must end. And, here is where we are more than doubly worse than Hitler. Hitler only decided to play God in answering the second question. We have played God in answering both. And, in barbarically botching both answers, we proceed to genocidally mutilate over 50 million bearers of God’s image. We foolishly assume the role of God to repeat the symbolic ritual of destroying that which bears God's image. How twisted is that?

It is one thing to reject the Bible and align with our barbaric displays of human depravity. It is beyond comprehension for one who believes in God to so align themselves. In Genesis 9:6 God says, “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image.” And, this is repeated in the New Testament. And, in Jeremiah 1:5 God says to Jeremiah, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.” The two questions that open this post are interesting to ask anyone, including Presidential candidates. But, only God has the right to answer them. And, He did not delegate that right to anyone, including you. But, Christian, if your answers and actions align with abortion as a means of birth control, you are aligned against God, in the place of God, and in favor of the destruction of the image of God as displayed upon those who are the most innocent of us all. Christian, if that is you, repent before it is too late.

You can purchase the book "Reason If You Will - How To Answer Questions Regarding Faith" by clicking HERE. You can also follow @ReasonIfYouWill on Twitter.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

How Your Calendar Proves God

It is easy to determine by way of astronomy how mankind in every nation universally aligns their calendars by days, months, seasons and years. All of these time markers in human life are marked by observable astronomical constants. For example, a day is 24 hours because that is the duration of one rotation of the earth on its axis. Similarly, our months represent the approximate intervals between new moons. Seasons are marked by equinoxes and solstices. And, a year is the duration of one orbital revolution of the earth around our sun. However, there are no such astronomical markers or constants for a seven-day week. Some have argued that a week represents approximately one-fourth of a lunar cycle. But, that argument breaks down on its face both in math (weeks don't fit well into months) and in its arbitrary partition (fourths). Why not partition the lunar cycle in halves or in thirds? Why not a fourteen-day week or a ten-day week? Why does everyone use a seven-day week? In fact, almost every civilization on every continent for the entirety of recorded history have observed and ordered their lives around the seven-day week. And, we have done so for no apparent astronomical reason. In addition to that, why does our seven-day cycle almost always include at least one day of rest from work? And, why is the day of rest always observed on either the first day or the last day of the week and not anywhere in the middle? How could such a system have originated and be observed universally even across widely dispersed people groups who have very different calendars and in every phase of history? What would a single answer to these questions suggest? Does your calendar prove there is a God?

Most encyclopedias and reference books treat these questions and their answers rather superficially. Is it because they prejudicially ignore what truth clearly suggests? After all, are these questions not legitimately worthy of serious responses? Take Wikipedia for example. Even the authors of Wikipedia can’t bring themselves to recognize a historical origin of the seven-day week any earlier than 500 B.C. in spite of glaringly obvious evidence to the contrary. Do you not see the obvious intentional ignorance in Wikipedia’s conclusion? After all, the relevant passages from Genesis and Exodus were written long before 500 B.C. and record observance of a seven-day week over 6,000 years ago. And, the finding and dating of the Dead Sea Scrolls proves that such books were not edited but authentic. The earliest books of the Bible that you are familiar with are identical to those that long predate 500 B.C. In fact, the relevant passages from Genesis and Exodus were both authored primarily by Moses around 1,500 B.C., approximately 1,000 years earlier than the earliest reference credited by Wikipedia. Is there any substantiated argument that the Creation account (Genesis) and the Mosaic Law (Exodus) are younger than 500 B.C.? Of course, the answer is no. In fact, even the most liberal critics date the Creation account to at least 850 B.C. And, no critic can deny that the Mosaic Law was recorded by its namesake, Moses, around 1,500 B.C. Why would Wikipedia ignore the obvious fact of these passages’ earlier authorship and that they are the earliest record of the seven-day week known to man? Maybe, it is because the truth will prove that the Bible is accurate and the authors of Wikipedia have an unhealthy bias against God? Maybe the truth behind history proves God. Maybe the authors of Wikipedia are not as vigilant about truth as we naively assume? I submit to you that the Bible is clearly proven more accurate than Wikipedia.

Since it is established fact that these passages of the Bible are by far the earliest record of a seven-day week, just what do Genesis and Exodus say? Well, after the first six days of creation, Genesis 2:1-3 records, “Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God finished his work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work that he had done. So God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it God rested from all his work that he had done in creation.” And, then this seven-day week is recorded in the Bible as being observed by Cain, Abel, Noah, Jacob, Leah, and the Israelite slaves in Egypt (and probably everyone in between). Then, God later went on to dictate to Moses what we refer to as the Mosaic Law as recorded in Exodus in approximately 1,500 B.C. In Exodus 20:8-11, as part of the Ten Commandments God said, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” By the way, this was repeated by God and Moses in Exodus 34:21 and Exodus 31:12-18. Isn't it ignorance to ignore these facts?

So, what do all of these facts prove? Well, these accounts were written as early as 1,500 B.C. and record the basis for the seven-day week dating back as far as Adam and Eve (over 6,000 years ago). The Bible also records a genealogy from Adam to Moses. Therefore, the Bible clearly outlines the single logical basis for a universally observed seven-day week throughout recorded history. Wikipedia and atheists can choose to ignore this. But, who do the facts support? Further, the Bible singularly answers all of the questions raised in the first paragraph of this post. The fact that almost every human civilization across the entire planet and throughout history observe a seven-day week supports the Biblical proclamation of Theism. And, even the most hardened atheist continues to use a calendar dictated by God. Laughingly, there is no other credible explanation for why we universally observe a seven-day week (either starting or ending with a day of rest) throughout the recorded history of man.

Another proof that there is something more to the origin of our seven-day week is that other species (who also work) do not observe weekly cycles, but they do observe all of the astronomical cycles. Have you ever wondered why that is? The other coincidence illuminated by the Bible is that the seven-day week was created around the same time as man was created. Could it be that in the weekly cycle we are observing the design of the Designer? Did you know that just as the human body has a natural daily clock (circadian rhythm), it also has a weekly clock (circaseptan rhythm). Circa-septan rhythms are body rhythms that run about seven days in length. It has been long established that the human body runs naturally on a seven-day cycle optimally requiring one day of rest for every seven. For another example, humans tend to have an increase in swelling on the seventh day and then the fourteenth day after surgeries. Similarly, humans with a kidney transplant are more likely to reject the organ seven days and then fourteen days after the surgery. Even the French experimented with and abandoned a ten-day week to disastrous anthropological result. Is this all coincidence or design? These rhythms are a part of who we are in concert with and separate from the fact that we happen to keep a seven-day week in our culture. Even Jesus was recorded as saying of the Sabbath (or seventh day) in Mark 2:27, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” And, everything we know from history and science proves Jesus right. Then again, it was Jesus Himself through which all things were created, including science (John 1).

So, why do so many of us see the obvious evidence in our calendars and ignore what it proves? Romans 2:14-15 illuminates, “For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them.” We know what is true, and even observe it, but we prefer to ignore that which convicts us of truth as it might be inconvenient to our carnal tendencies. But, whether we like it or not, if we order our lives in seven-day increments with at least one day of rest at the beginning or end, we are in significant respects observing a portion of the Mosaic Law recorded 3,500 years ago. All we have left to do is to recognize from whom this Law came – from the One who designed us in His image, modeled a work week for us, and thereby gave us a cycle to fit our biological design. Then, He recorded all of the above so that we might see His hand.

Christian, be encouraged that science and history do in fact support your faith in Jesus Christ. Every time you doubt this, try looking at your calendar and believe.

You can purchase the book "Reason If You Will - How To Answer Questions Regarding Faith" by clicking HERE. You can also follow @ReasonIfYouWill on Twitter.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Science Proves Sexual Preference is a Choice

We have heard the argument repeatedly (without proof) in defense of “gay marriage” (and homosexual activity in general), that homosexuals are born that way. Proponents argue that this is not a choice, because it is genetic, even though science continues to search for the elusive (probably non-existent) "gay gene." Aside from the fact that genetics do not decide our choices, does science truly support that homosexuality is genetic? No, it doesn’t. There does not exist a single study that compares the DNA of homosexuals finding differences from that of heterosexuals. However, we now have many studies that suggest exactly the opposite. In fact, there were eight major studies of identical twins across Australia, the U.S., and Scandinavia conducted over the past 20 years. The conclusions of these studies are clear: the data suggests that homosexuals were not born that way. How did they support this hypothesis? These studies compared the DNA of thousands of identical twins where at least one twin is homosexual because identical twins have the same DNA. According to Dr. Neil Whitehead the studies revealed that, “If an identical twin has same-sex attraction the chances the co-twin has it are only about 11% for men and 14% for women.” Further, “The predominant things that create homosexuality in one identical twin and not in the other have to be post-birth factors.” By the way, separate studies also suggest that the rate of homosexual offspring is similar for homosexual parents as it is for heterosexual parents. These studies and their conclusions are science. Then again, they are also common sense, aren't they? How else can you explain the numerous examples of people who jump back and forth between heterosexuality and homosexuality? The answer is ... choice.

Before we address the moral aspects of these conclusions, allow me to first address my own sexual immorality. I am a heterosexual male. I am happily married to my college sweetheart for the past 27 years. However, I have a natural temptation to look at other women in lust. Of this immoral tendency Jesus said in Matthew 5:28, “But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” That means every time I yield to this daily temptation, I am guilty of adultery. But, wasn’t I born this way? Why would God still find me guilty? But, this is the way God made me isn’t it? Therefore, this can't be immoral? No, each time I give in to this natural tendency, I am not excused, not by God, not even by myself and certainly not by my wife. Rather, God calls me to rise above my flesh (where my DNA resides) and natural tendencies. God rightly declares my flesh to be corrupt and calls me to suppress it. Every day I must choose to actively resist this temptation. Therefore, I create boundaries that help me avoid yielding to my flesh. I also have others in my life that hold me accountable in addition to my wife. I have a choice to resist this sexual temptation, just as much as I have the choice to yield to it.

What my daily struggle illustrates is that all (not some, but all) sexual immorality is the same in its origin and choice corruption. In fact, this is also true for the immorality of premarital sex. As old-fashioned as it may seem in today’s culture, God has not changed his mind about that either. But, if you follow the logic of those defending “gay marriage” why bother resisting that temptation either? If I am born heterosexual, and I want to have premarital sex, I have no choice but to yield to my flesh in this regard. That too is defying both logic and common sense. 

Again, all forms of sexual immorality can be suppressed, including homosexuality. Christian, if sexual preference is not a choice, then why would God call certain sexual preferences immoral and then communicate punishment for yielding to them? Even 1 Corinthians 10:13 says, "No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it." The truth is that 100% of all immorality is a willful choice and can be resisted. If this were not true, then we would all be doomed to chaotic, hedonism. But, that is not the case. In fact, most if not all people, conduct the majority of their waking lives in a manner compliant with many forms of restraint, including sexuality. Sexuality is not a special class of choice that is impossible to resist.

But, let’s continue to digress away from science for a moment. Let’s assume that sexuality is genetic (which is not scientific). Then again isn’t every sin genetic? Romans 5:12 says, “just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned.” Sin is our genetic inheritance from Adam on down to you and me. And, God commanded everyone from Adam to you and me to suppress the natural desire to yield to temptations that God forbids us from. To that end, we should not respect any form of sexual immorality over another. I equally disrespect my own sexual immorality as much as I disrespect that of others. We should never vault any sexual immorality as excusable over another. In fact, none of them are excusable. That is why on this topic, the group that I respect the most are the Christians who are either single or who have repented of homosexuality by choosing celibacy. This is a greater witness than mine.

In closing, Romans 6:13-20 says, “…The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body…Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ?... Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”

You can purchase the book "Reason If You Will - How To Answer Questions Regarding Faith" by clicking HERE. You can also follow @ReasonIfYouWill on Twitter.