So What's This All About?

In case you didn't know, I'm in the multi-year-long process of posting a Christian devotional at the TAWG Blog. The TAWG Blog is, and always will be, mostly apolitical. For the most part, Bible-believing Christians will find little to disagree with there. But I also firmly believe that God's word can--and should--inform everything in life, and this should include politics and popular culture. How should we vote? How should we respond to hot topics such as abortion, capital punishment, taxes, and other issues? Which party, if either, is closer to the Biblical ideal? Tony Campolo and Ron Sider, Evangelicals whose political leanings are on the Left, have made the case in several of their writings that God wants his followers to vote politically on the Left more than on the Right. At times, some of them have gone so far as to equate voting on the Left with obedience to Christ, either subtly or not-so-subtly contending that the converse is true as well: If you vote Republican, you're sinning against the Savior.
I don't agree. I think that to the degree they actually resort to the Bible, they're misinterpreting it. With a whole bunch of caveats, I think politically conservative positions are a lot more compatible with the Scriptures than the Leftist positions.
Just to clarify, I would never accuse people who disagree with me--especially siblings in Christ--of what they accuse me of. I don't judge my own heart, much less anyone else's, and I don't equate political disagreement with theological fidelity to God. I have no reason to doubt their love for the Lord and "for the least of these," but I believe that they're sincerely wrong.
So there are two main purposes for this blog. One is to make a case for my political beliefs based on Scripture. The other is a bit more vague, basically to work out my political beliefs and figure out what's based on Scripture and what's based on my own biases. I certainly don't have all the answers. Some of this stuff I'm still figuring out. And I'm certainly open to correction. As long as you make your case civilly and based on Scripture, feel free to make a comment, and I promise I'll post it and consider your arguments thoughtfully and prayerfully. Who knows? Maybe we'll learn a little something from each other.
May God bless our common striving together towards both the "little t" truth and "Big T" Truth. Our watchword here is a line from C. S. Lewis's The Last Battle: "Further up and further in!"

P.S. -- Below on the left is "Topics I've Covered" which lists everything I've posted topically. It's come to my attention that some people would like to see everything just listed for them. If that's you, you can get it here. Thanks to my friend Stephen Young for the tip!

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Mary McLeod Bethune

From Bill Bennett's American Patriot's Almanac:

As a girl, Mary McLeod Bethune dreamed of becoming a missionary in Africa. Born in 1875 to parents who had been slaves, she grew up near Maysville, South Carolina, working in cotton fields. Her burning desire to learn made her the star student in Maysville’s one-room school for black children. Scholarships led to more schooling in North Carolina, and then at Dwight Moody’s Institute for Home and Foreign Missions in Chicago. After finishing her studies, she learned there were “no openings for Negro missionaries in Africa.”

Undeterred, she embarked on a career as an educator. On October 3, 1904, with $1.50 in cash – all the money she had – she opened the Daytona Literacy and Industrial School for Training Negro Girls in a cottage in Daytona Beach, Florida. The school started with five pupils. Bethune used crates for desks, made ink from elderberries, and sold sweet potato pies to raise funds. She convinced wealthy businessmen to support her efforts. “Invest in a human soul,” she urged them. The school grew, and today it lives on as Bethune-Cookman University.

One night in 1920, eighty hooded Ku Klux Klansmen appeared outside the school, waving a burning cross. They had heard Bethune was registering black voters, and threatened to burn the school. If you do, we’ll rebuild it, she answered. The Klansmen rode away, and the next day Bethune led a procession of blacks to the polls.

Her courage won the admiration of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt. In 1936, she became the first black woman to head a federal agency, the Division of Negro Affairs of the National Youth Administration. Bethune joined other prominent blacks to form FDR’s “black cabinet,” an informal committee that advised the president on racial issues. “There can be no divided democracy, no class government, no half-free county, under the Constitution,” she wrote. Her life moved the country toward those ideals.

Every day, Bill Bennett provides via email--for free--a reading from his American Patriot's Almanac. You’ll read about heroes, their achievements, and key events that took place “On This Day” in American history. Click here to subscribe.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Honorary Citizens of the United States

From Bill Bennett's American Patriot's Almanac:

On October 1, 1996, Congress declared Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, better known as Mother Teresa, an honorary citizen of the United States. A native of what is now the Republic of Macedonia, the Roman Catholic nun spent a lifetime helping orphaned and abandoned children, the poor, the sick, and the dying in regions throughout the world, including the United States.

Only a handful of non-citizens have been declared honorary U.S. citizens. According to Congress, it is “an extraordinary honor not lightly conferred nor frequently granted.” The other honorary citizens are:

  • Winston Churchill (1963), the great British statesmen whose “bravery, charity and valor, both in war and in peace, have been a flame of inspiration in freedom’s darkest hour,” as President Kennedy put it.
  • Raoul Wallenberg (1981), the Swedish businessman who risked his life to save tens of thousands of Hungarian Jews from the Nazis, and who died after being imprisoned by Soviet authorities.
  • William Penn (1984), the English Quaker who in 1681 founded Pennsylvania to carry out an experiment based upon representative government, and his wife, Hannah Penn, who administered the Province of Pennsylvania for six years.
  • The Marquis de Lafayette (2002), the French soldier and statesman who fought alongside American Patriots during the Revolutionary War. An American flag flies over his grave in Paris.
  • Casimir Pulaski (2009), the Polish soldier and nobleman who fought in the Revolutionary War and became known as “the father of the American cavalry.” He died of wounds at the siege of Savannah in Georgia.

Every day, Bill Bennett provides via email--for free--a reading from his American Patriot's Almanac. You’ll read about heroes, their achievements, and key events that took place “On This Day” in American history. Click here to subscribe.