Al Stone It was the Sunday before the 4th of July and as usual our Pastor, Associate Pastor and Song Leader had set about to provide we parishioners with one of the finest patriotic programs one could ever ask for. The American Flag was ferried to the front and properly positioned alongside the Christian Flag; then followed the Pledge of Allegiance to the American Flag and the Pledge of Allegiance to the Christian Flag You could just see folks being lifted as they stood erect and participated in these “oaths”. Then came the children’s choir with an appropriate number followed by the grown-up choir singing a medley of songs design to stir activism … continue reading.
Archive | Essays
The understanding and comprehension of history is not only important it is critical. It is not only vital but it has been commanded by God for our admonition (II Timothy 2:15, Hosea 4:6, Deut. 28:58, II Chron.34). Frequently we hear folk say innocently, “Oh, that was over a hundred years ago, it doesn’t matter now or affect me.” Oh, but it does. The history of a people and culture is not a series of random selfies; it is a thread woven into the very fabric of who we are and what we represent. Tamper with truthful history and the fabric of that culture will become distorted and unrecognizable. Napoleon II said, “What … continue reading.
The horrible, tragic and unnecessary war in which the effusion of blood was halted in 1865, has reverberated through the centuries and enabled alert observers to see the intended consequences of those echoes; decade after decade. When General Lee surrendered the remnant of the Army of Northern Virginia (approx.26,000 men) to General Grant (approx. 100,000 men) his army had exhausted itself from winning battles only to lose the war. Had Lee asked his men to continue the fight, there is little doubt, those starving, rag-clad men would have continued to the death. The terms of the surrender were reasonable enough and the shooting stopped; yet the very real purpose of the war continues to … continue reading.
As southerners surveyed the damage after their failed bid for independence, some gave in to despair. Others were unsure what to do. Many turned to Christian ministers for guidance and comfort. Some of the better ones gave comfort and advice that is still excellent today. Robert Lewis Dabney was a Presbyterian minister, who preached for a time in Fishersville and spent a good deal of time teaching at Union Theological Seminary and Hampden-Sydney College. He served as Stonewall Jackson’s Chief of Staff, and wrote a number of books and articles after the war. In one article called “The Christian’s Duty to His Enemies,” Dabney argued for three forms of loss as a result … continue reading.
The Constitution of the United States is a beautifully written and simply worded document that enumerates the function of our central government. All other functions are the purview of the several Sovereign States, or the people. Article X of the Bill of Rights states: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the People.” In order for the system to operate as designed it must be administered by men possessing virtue and it must strictly adhere to the rule and spirit of law. Virginian James Madison, author of the Constitution said, “We have staked … continue reading.
We have all come been taught that Abraham Lincoln was a gentle man, “Honest Abe,” a man who advocated “malice toward none and charity for all.” We have been taught that Lincoln would have opposed the policy pursued by Radical Republicans like Thaddeus Stevens, which pushed for vengeful, retributive policies against the South. We have been taught in books, movies and documentaries that Lincoln instead preferred a policy of healing that neither punished the defeated Confederate government and Army nor average Southern civilians. Since Lincoln was assassinated before the Reconstruction policies were put into effect, we can never know for sure if he was sincere or not. However, we can make an informed judgment regarding his true … continue reading.
Older folk are full of truisms because after one lives long enough there is sufficient evidence to prove the truism “true”. At an early age, without the resource of experience, it is often impossible to fathom why older people say what they do. The better part of wisdom should tell you that somewhere in their truism is a kernel of truth that is of value. Ignorance is bliss. When you lay with dogs you get fleas. Even a hawk is an eagle among crows. There’s no free lunch. Democracy is two wolves and a sheep about to vote for supper. Ignorance of the facts is just that, ignorance. But once one … continue reading.
In the first book of Moses called Genesis we find in Chapter 1 verse 27: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created he them.” We have been gifted among all creatures with a body possessing locomotion and dexterity, a mind capable of reason, deduction, understanding, learning and will, and a spirit that seeks communion with its Maker. Taken together we are triune beings made in God’s image. These are eternal facts; and debate of the obvious is nothing more than distraction. So why are there wars and rumors of wars? Simply stated since the fall of Adam, man has been in … continue reading.
The price of a gallon of gasoline has more to say about the worthlessness of the US Dollar than it does about “Big Oil”. When gasoline is $3.00 a gallon, here’s where the money goes: $1.40 – 47% – Product Suppliers (owners of the crude, refiners & transportation) $ .70 – 23% – Federal and State Taxes (some higher, some lower) $ .47 – 16% – Refinery Costs ( last refinery built in this country 1972) $ .36 – 12% – Distribution & Advertising $ .07 – 02% – Big Oil Company Profits Keep in mind, in the United States, every employee of every company involved in the oil business is taxed and … continue reading.
The “Pledge of Allegiance” like the “Gettysburg Address” is pretty poetry and has the power to make one’s heart swell, but in terms of fact and upon close examination of words, both are nothing more than specious political propaganda. And that propaganda has been fed to inmates of government day care centers called schools for decades, many, many decades. The result being, that the hapless graduates of government institutions are sublime in their worthless knowledge and fit to follow instruction to become taxpayers, but none or very few have been taught to exercise their capacity to think. They can fit in, they can compete, and they can even achieve reasonably high levels of success. … continue reading.
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