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!

Saturday, January 13, 2018

The Long Winter at Valley Forge

I'll admit it: I hate cold weather, and I make sure that everyone around me knows that I hate cold weather. One of things I struggle with as a believer is a complaining spirit. This really smacked me upside the head.

From Bill Bennett's American Patriot's Almanac:

The winter of 1777–78 brought dark days to the American Revolution. The British had captured Philadelphia, the colonies’ largest city, and settled into snug quarters there for the season. George Washington’s battered army, meanwhile, limped to a bleak hillside in Pennsylvania and set about making winter camp. The name of the place was Valley Forge.

The coming weeks saw unimaginable suffering. The Americans lived in crude log huts that did little to keep out rain or snow. The army dressed in rags. Some soldiers had no shoes except strips they had cut from their precious blankets to wrap around their feet. At night they lay on the frozen ground, or stayed up until morning crowding around their fires to keep from freezing to death. At one point Washington wrote, “We have this day no less than 2,873 men in camp unfit for duty because they are barefooted and otherwise naked.”

There was almost never enough food. Men lived for whole days at a time on nothing but flour and water baked on hot stones. Disease swept through the camp, leaving an army of skeletons shivering in the biting winds.

But the Patriot spirit never broke. Somehow, in the midst of misery, the troops managed to march, drill, and train themselves to fight. “If we can just live through this winter,” they told themselves, “we can win our freedom.”

The Americans had arrived at Valley Forge with perhaps 12,000 men. By the time the snows of winter melted, only 8,000 remained—8,000 who had survived on little but loyalty, courage, and resolve. It was a tougher army that marched away from Valley Forge, an army ready to fight.

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.

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