Friday, January 29, 2010


Rebecca Kiessling delivered two stones to the Goliath she battles as she told her story to crowds in our area last week. Rebecca is the child of a rape, given life by a mother for whom abortion was then illegal.

Christians often make one of two concessions in the ongoing abortion debate. They may oppose abortion except in the case of rape or incest. Or they are willing to allow abortion remain legal but try to educate people about its results.

Rebecca spoke powerfully. “My mother would have aborted me if abortion had been legal in those days,” she said. “I wouldn’t be here.”

She brings strong fabric to our world, an intelligent passionate woman who is a lawyer, mother, speaker, writer.

But she wouldn’t be here if the rape had happened in 1975 instead of 1969.

Many who would see abortion made illegal are willing to concede the point in cases of rape or incest. Who wants to force a victim to endure a pregnancy and birth after such a horrendous event?

Those people would have allowed Rebecca’s life to be blotted out as well.

“I remember feeling like I was garbage….that I was disposable,” Rebecca commented.

Hers is a voice not easily ignored. Check out her website here.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Rules and rights

My best friend in high school couldn’t go to movies.

“I don’t know why exactly,” she told me once. “But our family just waits til the movie shows up on TV and then we watch it.”

Devin couldn’t play cards when he was growing up and so his favorite card game today is Rook, because it was not considered evil. He doesn’t know why, either.

I’ve heard about orthodox Jews paying someone to trip light switches on the Sabbath so that they don’t do any work that day. I know the Pharisees of ancient times had involved explanations so that people didn’t walk too far and break the Sabbath rest.

I’ve working my way through 1 Corinthians right now, where Paul responded to questions by a church plant in ancient Corinth. There was a stew of Jews, Greeks, Romans, pagans who had discovered Jesus and were trying to figure out how that all worked within a church.

They asked practical questions: Can we eat meat sacrificed to idols? Is it better to serve God as a single person? And, if so, should we leave our spouse?

They wanted rules. Couldn’t Paul just give them specifics for living?

Paul gave them principles. On the question of meat sacrificed to idols, he acknowledged that idols are nothing. Having recently left pagan practices behind, some in Corinth were uncomfortable eating sacrificial meat.

If it didn’t bother me, was it proper for me to indulge my freedom?

It was, Paul confirmed, but not if that freedom tore at another’s faith. My freedom was not the trump card in decisions; love was.

“Love builds up,” Paul told the church. The principle was simple: my choices must not hinder another’s spiritual life.

I might have to trim my freedom to keep another from falling. Paul didn’t give them a set of rules for purchasing or not purchasing meat in the marketplace. He gave them principles to use.

Though I am free and belong to no man, I make myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. 1 Cor 9:19

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Manhattan Declaration

I signed the Manhattan Declaration in December but received a letter from them this week. The authors are hoping to collect a million signatures. Here are portions of the letter they have sent out, alerting Christians to this opportunity:

Dear colleague,

Thank you for your support of the Manhattan Declaration.

It is off to an amazing start - over 370,000 signers and growing. And it is indeed historic: Evangelicals, Catholics, Anglicans, and Eastern Orthodox Christians uniting to give common witness to the sanctity of human life, the dignity of marriage, and religious liberty for all persons.

But we need your help: our goal is one million signatures.

The marketing pros tell us we will never get to a million signatures without expensive advertising. But we want to prove them wrong. And we can: just think if each person who has signed the Declaration were to get just two others to sign. That would be one million people standing arm in arm in defense of the most vital moral truths in our society.

Remember, too, we are not just collecting signatures; we seek a movement of people defending the truth in the public square. We are already witnessing signs of this: Christians in Mobile, Alabama called us 13 days before Christmas to tell us they were planning a large ecumenical gathering for the 23rd of December. I (Chuck Colson) agreed to speak. At 6:00 AM on December 23, 2,000 citizens, led by clergy from all over the city, gathered in a packed hall in the Convention Center for a rousing rally. Seldom have I seen so much excitement in one room - and all of this was accomplished just by word of mouth with only 11 days to organize!

Just ten days ago, Cardinal Rigali of Philadelphia, Archbishop Wuerl of Washington, DC, Archbishop Dolan of New York and Archbishop Kurtz of Louisville reached out to all of their brother Catholic bishops asking them to spread this document throughout their dioceses and encourage their clergy and faithful to study it and join as signatories.

The Archbishop of Detroit has planned a grassroots effort throughout his archdiocese. The Bishop of Phoenix has already organized a grassroots effort there.

We are also receiving many reports of evangelical gatherings in a number of areas - and many evangelical pastors referring to the Manhattan Declaration in their sermons.

As with any grassroots movement, the strength and energy has to come from the people. We have no staff and limited budget. We're people who care passionately and deeply about life, marriage, and liberty. So here's what we are asking you to do.

  1. Pray fervently. Great movements of faith have always spread on the wings of prayer.
  2. Know the issues. If you study this Declaration - and a study guide is available on our website - then you can winsomely explain and defend it to your neighbors and friends. The document itself makes a great apologetic defense for these moral truths.
  3. Look for resources on this website as we're able to post them, and search the websites of the Christian organizations that offer resources in these three areas. You can see the names of the various leaders who have signed the Declaration and then visit their websites.
  4. Of utmost importance, get your own church involved. As pastors preach, the movement will spread. Prayer meetings and Bible studies on the Declaration are being conducted in many churches, which is a great step.

Just think what might happen in our land if one million courageous Christians declared their uncompromising allegiance to Jesus Christ and to biblical faithfulness on some of the most urgent moral issues of our day.

May God give us the strength to do what He is so clearly calling us to do. From our perspective, this is a cause worth giving every last ounce of effort and energy we have.

Dr. Robert George
Dr. Timothy George
Chuck Colson

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Weather complaints?

Truly, then, God governs inanimate matter. Earth and air, fire and water, hail and snow, stormy winds and angry seas, all perform the word of His power and fulfill His Sovereign pleasure. Therefore, when we complain about the weather we are, in reality, murmuring against God.
-Arthur Pink, The Sovereignty of God

Guilty as charged - and now repentant.