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31  ChristiansUnite and Announcements / ChristiansUnite and Announcements / The Patriot Post Digest 2-8-2019 on: February 08, 2019, 04:43:43 PM
________________________________
The Patriot Post Digest 2-8-2019
From The Federalist Patriot
Free Email Subscription
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“House Democrats have twice refused now to take up the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act for consideration. The measure is ‘designed to ensure any infant born alive after an abortion receives the same protection of law as any newborn: mandating care and instituting penalties for doctors who allow such infants to die or who intentionally kill a newborn,’ according to a statement from the office of its sponsor Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO).” (Townhall33)
Meanwhile, “Massachusetts Democrats have taken a page from New York’s radical left and are pushing a bill to legalize abortion at any time during the pregnancy,” Townhall also reports34. “The bill … would get rid of the ‘grave impairment’ language so that an abortion could take place after 24 weeks if the pregnancy risks ‘her physical or mental health, or in cases of lethal fetal anomalies, or where the fetus is incompatible with sustained life outside the womb.’” Of course, “physical or mental health” is an ambiguous term intended to permit abortion on demand.
On Tuesday, Sen. Amy Klobuchar intimated, “I’m making a big announcement on Sunday.” But according to The Daily Signal35, Klobuchar’s intention “to announce a possible presidential campaign this weekend … may have to wait after a report emerged Wednesday night alleging Klobuchar is cruel and potentially abusive to her staff.” At least three campaign-manager prospects have reportedly backed out, all of whom cited the senator’s propensity for belligerent behavior.
End of an era: “Former Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich., the longest-serving member of Congress who played a key role in many pieces of landmark legislation, has died. He was 92. He was diagnosed with prostate cancer last year. ‘Congressman Dingell died peacefully [Thursday] at his home in Dearborn, surrounded by his wife Deborah,’ the office of his wife, Rep. Debbie Dingell, said in a statement.” (NBC News36)
The Associated Press reports37 that “the Army is developing a new, more grueling and complex fitness exam that adds dead lifts, power throws and other exercises designed to make soldiers more fit and ready for combat.” The impetus? “Commanders have complained in recent years that the soldiers they get out of basic training aren’t fit enough.” Furthermore, “Unlike the old fitness test, which graded soldiers differently based on age and gender, the new one will be far more physically demanding and will not adjust the passing scores for older or female soldiers.”
Humor: Green New Deal promises energy-efficient gulags in every neighborhood (The Babylon Bee38)
Policy: The Daily Signal’s Nicolas Loris says39, “Here’s the most important fact about the Green New Deal: It wouldn’t work. Ultimately, fully implementing the Green New Deal would have no meaningful impact on global temperatures.”
Policy: It’s been nine months since the U.S. pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal. And today, “Europe is coming to acknowledge and act on the nuclear threat posed by Tehran.” Fred Fleitz explains why “Trump’s Iran-Deal Withdrawal Is a Clear Success40” in National Review.
For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit In Our Sights41.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/61050-friday-top-headline-summary


OPINION IN BRIEF

Erick Erickson: “Democrats in the House of Representatives have rolled out what they are calling a ‘Green New Deal.’ It is the most serious public policy offering from Generation Tide Pod Eater to ever be unveiled. It is exactly what you would expect. … During World War II, Franklin Roosevelt added about $240 billion to the national debt. Ronald Reagan added about $1.8 trillion. George W. Bush added over $5 trillion, with Barack Obama adding about $8 trillion. The national debt will top $25 trillion by 2021, with interest payments on that debt exceeding every other expenditure. This green program would double the national debt, making it the single largest expenditure in the history of the United States. It would also bankrupt families, businesses and the nation. This Green New Deal would make the national socialists and their kissing cousins, the Soviets of mid-twentieth century Europe, very proud — if only because it would destroy the American economy.”


SHORT CUTS

For laughs: “By the end of the Green New Deal resolution (and accompanying fact sheet) I was laughing so hard I nearly cried. If a bunch of GOPers plotted to forge a fake Democratic bill showing how bonkers the party is, they could not have done a better job.” —Kimberley Strassel

Before: “One reason that people who are politically conservative are skeptical of efforts to combat climate change is that it sounds to them like it requires massive government intervention. … It does, it does. … I have no problem saying that.” —Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

After: “I think one way that the Right does try to mischaracterize, uh, what we’re doing as though it’s, like, some kind of massive government takeover. Obviously, it’s not that. —Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Braying Jenny: "This is one of the most urgent moral issues and crises that we have in America right now. This is not a political issue. Children dying in detention centers should not be a partisan concern. It should be a universal concern for every American in the United States. We’re here to say that an agency like ICE, which repeatedly and systematically violates human rights, does not deserve a dime.” —Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, just days after an illegal alien murdered a citizen of her sanctuary-city district

If only she were consistent: “Preserving God’s creation … is, in my view, a moral responsibility.” —Nancy Pelosi on unborn life the planet facing climate change

Demo-gogues: “The Virginians will resolve their issues that they have there. It’s sad because they have some very talented leaders there, but they have to have the confidence of the electorate and they have to have the confidence of the legislature that they have to work with. But I’ll leave that up to them. I have enough to do here without getting involved in the affairs of Virginia.” —Nancy Pelosi

And last… “The threat of climate change is so urgent that we can’t solve it unless we commit to giving everybody free healthcare, free college, affordable housing, healthy food, well-paying jobs, and provide economic security to those unwilling to work.” —Philip Klein

https://patriotpost.us/articles/61046-friday-short-cuts

Join our editors and staff in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families. We also humbly ask prayer for your Patriot team, that our mission would seed and encourage the spirit of Liberty in the hearts and minds of our countrymen.

Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis

Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher
32  ChristiansUnite and Announcements / ChristiansUnite and Announcements / The Patriot Post Digest 2-8-2019 on: February 08, 2019, 04:41:22 PM
________________________________
The Patriot Post Digest 2-8-2019
From The Federalist Patriot
Free Email Subscription
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The Patriot Post® · Mid-Day Digest

Feb. 8, 2019

https://patriotpost.us/digests/61052-mid-day-digest

THE FOUNDATION

“It will not be denied that power is of an encroaching nature and that it ought to be effectually restrained from passing the limits assigned to it.” —James Madison (1788)

https://patriotpost.us/fqd/61051-founders-quote-daily

IN TODAY’S EDITION

The real climate agenda is more Big Government.1
Daily Features: More Analysis2, Columnists3, Headlines4, Opinion in Brief5, Short Cuts6, Memes7, and Cartoons8.

FEATURED ANALYSIS

‘Green New Deal’ Is Just Repackaged Socialism9

Michael Swartz

It’s a little over 13 pages, but this week the long-awaited framework and philosophy10 for the “Green New Deal” (GND) was unleashed onto Congress. Described11 by House sponsor (and shiny new object) Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) as “national, social, industrial and economic mobilization at a scale not seen since World War II,” the measure sets an ambitious timetable for weaning ourselves off our carbon dependency. Of course, it doesn’t get into the specifics of cost, either in dollars or in freedom.

Just remember that the real climate agenda12 for leftists is socialist economic control, as evident in the insane requirements13 of the GND.

Written as a resolution14 rather than a bill, the GND reads as a laundry list of socialistic changes attached to the overriding goal of combating climate change by making America 100% dependent on “clean, renewable, and zero-emission energy sources … by dramatically expanding and upgrading renewable power sources [and] deploying new capacity.” Along the way, a second chief goal of the GND is to empower “frontline and vulnerable communities,” also known as the victim class.

While those on the extreme Left — including Vox writer David Roberts, who in December authored an extremely long treatise15 on the GND’s origins and eventual goals — were pleased16 to see the concept come to life, Roberts and others like him also know that the resolution left a lot of blanks17 to be filled by actual legislation.

One comparison for the GND could be made to the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which is described by author Michael Grunwald as its own “ginormous energy bill18.” A significant part of that “stimulus” money went to renewable energy and efficiency projects. But while best known for its support of failed green-energy companies like Solyndra and Ener1, it also created a large funding pool that lifted the solar- and wind-energy industries to the modest market share they now own.

Most of the 2020 Democrat presidential contenders were already behind the Green New Deal in concept, but its introduction allowed them to prove their environmental bonafides. Sen. Cory Booker was “excited” to join in, adding19, “Our history is a testimony to the achievement of what some think is impossible — we must take bold action now.” Fellow Senator and GND co-sponsor Kamala Harris insisted20, “We must aggressively tackle climate change which poses an existential threat to our nation.” Not to be outdone, Sen. Elizabeth Warren chimed in21, “Climate change is real, it threatens all of us, & we have no time to waste to address it head-on.” She’ll also co-sponsor the resolution, which becomes a perfect palette from which these contenders can paint their own proposals to oppose President Donald Trump.

While there were compromises and large parts of the plan open for interpretation, the GND is still getting a cool reception22 from Democrat leadership. “The green dream or whatever they call it, nobody knows what it is, but they’re for it right?” asked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi somewhat dismissively. “Quite frankly, I haven’t seen it,” she added, “but I do know it’s enthusiastic and we welcome all the enthusiasm that is out there.”

Translation: She knows it’s pretty extreme, so just wait for her moderated “compromise” offer. By the way, Pelosi also pointedly did not choose Ocasio-Cortez for a new committee on climate change.

Last month, our Brian Mark Weber called out the Green New Deal23 for what it really is: “a dangerous scam to destroy the country as we know it.”

Republicans, for their part, should certainly lampoon the GND’s most laughable parts — such as its promise of “economic security for those unable or unwilling to work” or “upgrading all existing buildings in the United States … to achieve maximal energy efficiency” or “build out high-speed rail at a scale where air travel stops becoming necessary” or to “replace every combustion-engine vehicle” (emphasis ours) — but they must be on guard for those aspects that seem somewhat reasonable by comparison.

We can’t dismiss the chance that some portions of the GND will make it through Congress or be executive-ordered by a future president. After all, people thought HillaryCare didn’t stand a chance when it was unveiled in 1993 and failed in a fully Democrat-controlled Congress. But a quarter-century later, Republicans controlled both houses and the White House and still couldn’t get rid of its successor. If nothing else, history shows that leftists are masters of incrementalism, especially when they conjure up a crisis and claim that only they can solve it.

Let’s be mindful of that history when the sun comes out tomorrow and provides its live-giving (albeit unevenly applied) brand of global warming.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/61049-green-new-deal-is-just-repackaged-socialism


ON OUR WEBSITE TODAY

Leftist ‘Handmaids’ Revel in a Fantasy Dystopia24 — They twist Reagan’s “Morning in America” to fearmonger about Trump’s leadership.
Dems Block Scalise’s Pro-Gun Testimony25 — House Democrats attempt to silence Scalise as they push their latest gun-control legislation.
For Roberts, Precedent and Perception Rule26 — The chief justice joined the left wing in blocking an abortion law, reversing his own previous position.
Fed Workers’ Salaries Aren’t Exactly Hurting 27 — Democrats want raises for all government workers. But do they already make too much?
Trump’s Affirmation of Life at National Prayer Breakfast28 — The annual meeting of Christian leaders featured strong remarks from the president.
Video: Things Democrats Won’t Applaud29 — Trump’s SOTU was well received by viewers, but not by Democrats in the audience.

TOP HEADLINE SUMMARY

On Feb. 15, another partial government shutdown will commence if a budget deal remains elusive. According to ABC News31, “The 17-member committee charged with hashing out a border security deal in order to avert another government shutdown in seven days is inching closer to a deal.” However, that does not mean President Trump will accept the compromise if it’s absent funding for a border barrier. If he doesn’t, declaring a national emergency is even more likely.
A Louisiana abortion law that imposed regulations on abortion clinics found disfavor with Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts. “Roberts joined the Supreme Court’s liberal wing on Thursday in temporarily blocking a Louisiana law that would have placed restrictions on abortion clinics,” says Fox News32. Strangely, “The Louisiana law is virtually identical to a Texas measure the justices struck down three years ago by a 5-3 vote, shortly after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia. Roberts dissented in that case, when he was not the deciding vote, and sided with the conservative minority that wanted to uphold the anti-abortion law — making his decision on Thursday a significant reversal.” Is John “ObamaCare Is a Tax” Roberts once again playing politics26?
33  Theology / Bible Study / Peace And Access on: February 07, 2019, 12:50:11 PM
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Peace And Access
by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam


    “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ; by whom also we have access…” (Rom. 5:1,2).

“Being justified… we have peace with God”!

What a priceless blessing! We believers are prone to take this blessing altogether too much for granted. Since the day we trusted Christ and the burden of sin rolled away, most of us have never had another question about our eternal destiny. Hence the danger of taking our salvation for granted.

We often fail to appreciate sufficiently what it means to be able to arise in the morning, go about our business during the day and give ourselves up to unconsciousness at night, always assured that through our Lord’s redemptive work we have “peace with God” and our eternal destiny is secure. Surely this knowledge should overwhelm our hearts with constant gratitude and have a profound effect upon our daily conduct.

The companion blessing to “peace with God” is our full and free access into His presence: another blessing of grace far too little appreciated. Think of the wonder of our free access to God; how He, the Ruler of the Universe, invites us to come confidently before His “throne of grace” at our convenience — “in time of need.”

    “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:16).

We should never forget that this high privilege was purchased for us by the precious blood of Christ, and that having thus been purchased, it is His will that we believers avail ourselves of “this grace.” Could there be greater proof of His love for us?

    “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,

    “…a new and living way, which He hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, His flesh.

    “….Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith…” (Heb. 10:19-22).
34  Entertainment / Poetry/Prose / Look up! on: February 07, 2019, 12:47:56 PM
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From Grace Gems - Free and Public Domain:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
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http://www.gracegems.org/
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Look up!

(James Smith, "A New Year's Motto" 1865)

"Look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near!" Luke 21:28

We are entering upon a new year, we shall have . . .
  new toils,
  new trials,
  new temptations,
  new troubles.

In whatever state, in whatever place, into whatever condition we may be brought this year--let us seek grace to follow our Lord's loving advice, and "look up!"

Do not look back--as Lot's wife did.

Do not look within--as too many do.

Do not look around--as David did.

But "look up!" Look up to God--He is your Father, your Friend, your Savior. He can help you. He will help you. He says, "Look unto Me, and be delivered--for I am God!"

Look up for light to guide you--and He will direct your path.

Look up for grace to sanctify you--and the grace of Jesus will be found sufficient for you.

Look up for strength to enable you to do and suffer God's will--and His strength will be made perfect in your weakness.

Look up for comfort to cheer you--and as one whom his mother comforts, so will the Lord comfort you.

Look up for courage to embolden you--and the Lord will give courage to the faint; and to those who have no might--He will increase strength.

Look up for endurance to keep you--and the God who preserves you will enable you quietly to bear the heaviest burden, and silently to endure the most painful affliction.

Look up for providence to supply you--and the jar of flour will not be used up, and the jug of oil will not run dry; but God shall supply all your needs, according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.

Look up in faith--exercising confidence in the Word of a faithful God.

Look up in prayer--asking for what God has graciously promised.

Look up in hope--expecting what you ask in the name of Jesus.

Look up with adoration--and adore the sovereignty, righteousness, and wisdom of God.

Look up constantly--let nothing daunt or discourage you! Rather say, "Our eyes are on the Lord our God--until He shows us mercy."

Look up--for this will keep . . .
  your head from swimming,
  your heart from sinking,
  your knees from trembling,
  your feet from slipping, and
  your hands from hanging down!

It is impossible to say what will happen to us, or what will be required of us this year--but "Look up!" This direction, if properly attended to, will . . .
  procure for us all that we need,
  secure us against all that we dread, and
  make us more than a match for all our foes and fears!

Fellow-Christian, are you fearful? "Look up" and hear Jesus saying to you, "Do not be afraid--I Myself will help you!"

Are you discouraged? "Look up"--and your youth shall be renewed like the eagle's, and fresh light, comfort, and courage shall be given to you!

Are you desponding? "Look up" for Jesus never breaks the bruised reed, nor quenches the smoking flax.

Do not look too much at your sin--but look at the infinitely meritorious blood of God's dear Son!

Do not look too much at self--but look at Jesus, who ever lives to make intercession for you in Heaven.

Are you stripped of your comforts, your props, and your goods? Then look up! He who stripped you--loves you! He will be more than all of these to you! He will . . .
  bind up your broken heart,
  calm your discouraged spirit,
  cheer your drooping mind, and
  fill you with His own peace and happiness.

Look up . . .
  for all that you need;
  from all that you fear;
  through all that would obstruct your way.

Look up every day, saying with David, "In the morning, O Lord, You hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before You, and will look up!" Psalm 5:3

Look up in every trial, saying "I will lift up my eyes unto the hills, from whence comes my help! My help comes from the Lord, who made Heaven and earth!"

Do not look at your sin--it will discourage you!

Do not look at your self--it will distress you!

Do not look at Satan--he will bewilder you!

Do not look to men--they will deceive, or disappoint you!

Do not look at your trials--they will deject you!

"Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us--looking unto Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith!" Hebrews 12:1-2

Look only, look always, look intently--to Jesus!

Run looking, work looking, fight looking, suffer looking, live looking, and die looking--to Jesus, who is at God's right hand in glory!

Oh, look, look, look to Jesus!
35  ChristiansUnite and Announcements / ChristiansUnite and Announcements / The Patriot Post Digest 2-7-2019 on: February 07, 2019, 12:45:44 PM
________________________________
The Patriot Post Digest 2-7-2019
From The Federalist Patriot
Free Email Subscription
_______________________________



Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer taunted the president, saying, “He’s scared. He’s got something to hide. Because if he had nothing to hide he’d just shrug his shoulders and let these investigations go forward.”

Memo to Schumer: Pointing out that investigations are a political witch hunt — which these are — is a lot different than obstructing those investigations. Trump has done nothing to stop the process; he’s merely exposed the partisan hackery of it all.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/61020-dems-ramp-up-ridiculous-partisan-investigations


ON OUR WEBSITE TODAY

Featured Analysis: Utopian Dreams, Dystopian Realities23 — Democrats want to punish the wealthy just for daring to have more money than others.
Video: Bad Laws Worsen the Homeless Crisis24 — Politicians claim housing regulation helps the poor. In reality, it makes their lives much harder.
Don’t Miss Alexander’s Column
Read The 2019 SOTU Review: A Trump Administration Triumph18. There is a new opportunity in American politics, if only we have the courage to seize it. Victory is not winning for our party. Victory is winning for our country.

If you’d like to receive Alexander’s Column by email every Wednesday, update your subscription here25.

GOOD NEWS
‘Compton Cowboys’ Use Rescue Horses to Get At-Risk Youth Off Streets26
“Though the streets of Compton are generally associated with racial violence, this group of cowboys is breaking stereotypes by getting at-risk youngsters off of the street and onto horses instead. The 10 original founders of the horse-collective first met each other as young boys at a nonprofit stable located in a semi-rural area of Compton. Since their relatives encouraged them to attend the organization’s activities as an alternative to gang violence, the stable provided the youngsters with a safe haven from the dangers of their environment.”

Read more at Good News Network27.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/61005-compton-cowboys-use-rescue-horses-to-get-at-risk-youth-off-streets


TOP HEADLINE SUMMARY

Apologies ad nauseam: “Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., on Wednesday was once again forced to apologize for claiming Native American ancestry on a 1986 registration card for the Texas state bar, and left the door open that there may be more documents out there with a similar claim,” Fox News reports29. Her latest apology is just a few days removed from her quietly giving a private mea culpa30 to the chief of the Cherokee Nation.
Last year was another record-setting warm one, according to government scientists31. In fact, the current five-year period is the warmest on record. Democrats are complaining that climate change was absent from President Donald Trump’s State of the Union Address, but the U.S. is doing its part to reduce emissions32. That’s not the case with other nations, which is why the Green New Deal, the goals of which were unveiled today33, is senseless. In any event, there are more unknowns than there are knowns.
“Cutting the supply of prescription opioids has been a popular intervention to fight the drug crisis. But, according to a study released last week by the Journal of the American Medical Association, these interventions are likely to cut opioid deaths by only 3 to 6 percent by 2025.” Read why The Washington Free Beacon says34 that “policymakers must think bigger to stop opioid deaths.”
Not satire: “Calls for Liam Neeson to be removed from the upcoming ‘Men In Black’ film are making the rounds on social media after the actor made highly controversial statements about wanting to find and kill a black person35.” (Fox News36)
Humor: Elizabeth Warren admits to wearing paleface at college costume party (The Babylon Bee37)
Policy: What can be done to improve retirees’ security? The American Enterprise Institute’s Andrew G. Biggs recently testified38 before the House Ways & Means Committee “to discuss developments in retirement income policy in the United States.”
Policy: Assuming Congress doesn’t fund a border barrier, the president is almost guaranteed to declare an emergency. And according to National Review’s John Yoo, he’s got the law on his side39.
For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit In Our Sights40.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/61023-thursday-top-headline-summary


OPINION IN BRIEF

R. Emmett Tyrrell: “Years ago, more than 50 years ago, one of my wisest coaches in high school told me to forget my grandparents, by which he meant forget their battles. Americans, in times past, argued along racial lines, ethnic lines, religious lines and even union member lines. Actually, northerners did not much like the southerners, and visa versa. The time had come, my old coach felt, to give up the battles of the past. That is even truer today. Yet there is nothing long ago or far away about [Ralph] Northam’s remarks on an abortion bill, which would allow abortions up to 40 weeks, now being discussed by Virginia legislators. On Jan. 30, he explained: ‘if a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen. The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired. And then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother.” They would discuss whether the infant would live or die, while “the infant would be kept comfortable.’ That is the kind of thing Gov. Northam should now be apologizing for.”


SHORT CUTS

Insight: “If I want to be free from any other man’s dictation, I must understand that I can have no other man under my control.” —William Graham Sumner (1840-1910)

For the record: “Megyn Kelly was fired from her show for asking a hypothetical question about blackface. Joy Behar actually wore blackface, and admitted it, and showed a picture of it on TV, yet she still has her job.” —Matt Walsh

Braying Jenny: “It’s really quite a sad thing when you know that we’ll be talking about something that applies to the health and life — health and ability to have other children of women. I hope that in his family, he never has to face that crisis and apply his attitude toward it.” —Nancy Pelosi replying to Donald Trump going after late-term abortion

Braying Jackass: “I saw [the State of the Union] as a psychotically incoherent speech with cookies and dog poop. He tries to put together in the same speech these warm, kind things about humanitarianism, and caring about children. At the same time, he is demonizing people who are immigrants in a way that was appalling. … There were people in that gallery who were children, who have been torn away from their mothers at the border. He did not mention them. There were soldiers who were transgender, who have been thrown out of the military. He didn’t mention them. … There are veterans who he has thrown out of this country who are Dreamers. He did not mention them. And he didn’t say one positive thing.” —Van Jones

Alpha Jackass: “Buy stock in coat hangers! Here we go, 60 years, back to the back alleys!” —actress Bette Midler

Dezinformatsiya: “Virginia Attorney General Says He Also Dressed in Dark Makeup.” —The New York Times, which subsequently substituted in the word “blackface” following objections

Non Compos Mentis: “It has now been shown completely that nothing about my background ever had anything to do with any job I got in any place.” —Elizabeth Warren

And last… “‘Immigrants have to come here legally.’ Only half the room stands and applauds. This is a position that every elected Democrat held until 2009.” —Twitter satirist @hale_razor

https://patriotpost.us/articles/61021-thursday-short-cuts


Join our editors and staff in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families. We also humbly ask prayer for your Patriot team, that our mission would seed and encourage the spirit of Liberty in the hearts and minds of our countrymen.

Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis

Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher
36  ChristiansUnite and Announcements / ChristiansUnite and Announcements / The Patriot Post Digest 2-7-2019 on: February 07, 2019, 12:44:18 PM
________________________________
The Patriot Post Digest 2-7-2019
From The Federalist Patriot
Free Email Subscription
_______________________________


The Patriot Post® · Mid-Day Digest

Feb. 7, 2019

https://patriotpost.us/digests/61025-mid-day-digest

THE FOUNDATION

“We must take human nature as we find it, perfection falls not to the share of mortals.” —George Washington (1786)

https://patriotpost.us/fqd/61024-founders-quote-daily

IN TODAY’S EDITION
Virginia Democrats are finding the bed they made rather uncomfortable.1
Judicial obstruction has been taken to a new level in the last two years.2
Trump called out “ridiculous partisan investigations.” Dems ramped them up.3
Daily Features: More Analysis4, Columnists5, Headlines6, Opinion in Brief7, Short Cuts8, Memes9, and Cartoons10.

IN BRIEF

Virginia Dem Scandal Spirals11

Thomas Gallatin

It’s a tough time to be a Democrat in Virginia. For the rest of the country, it’s been like watching an episode of “House of Cards,” only this is no fictional TV show. Wednesday provided the latest twist in what can only be described as a slow-motion political train wreck.

Following the initial revelation12 of Gov. Ralph Northam’s racist 1984 yearbook photograph and that in another yearbook he was known by the nickname “Coonman,” Democrats across the country were quick to call for his resignation. Many assumed Democrats were in the perfect position to prove their party’s commitment to “social justice.” However, almost immediately following Northam’s controversy, Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax found himself knee-deep in his own scandal13, this time over allegations of sexual assault. His accuser has released a detailed statement14 of her accusations. Suddenly, with Virginia’s top two Democrats facing growing pressure to resign, the question of succession was raised. According to the Commonwealth’s Constitution, should both Northam and Fairfax resign, the office of the governorship would fall to Democrat Attorney General Mark Herring.

For Democrats, should that worst-case scenario unfold, it would be painful, but at least a Republican wouldn’t take over. Or at least that was the thinking until Wednesday afternoon, when AG Herring admitted that he too had dressed in blackface once in 1980 when he was in college. Cue the outrage posse.

Suddenly, Virginia’s top three Democrats are all damaged goods — two racists and a sex offender. Ironically, one of the Democrats who had called for Northam’s resignation was none other than Herring, who stated on Saturday, “It is no longer possible for Governor Northam to lead our Commonwealth and it is time for him to step down. I have spoken with Lieutenant Governor Fairfax and assured him that, should he ascend to the governorship, he will have my complete support and commitment to ensuring his success and the success of our Commonwealth.” So, if Herring does not resign for the same “crime,” would he not be outing himself as a total hypocrite and political opportunist?

And, to rub a little salt in the Democrats’ wound, guess who’s in line for the governorship should all three Democrats resign — Virginia House Speaker Kirk Cox, a Republican.

Finally, Mark Alexander observes, “I think Demos are regretting jumping on the resignation bandwagon because there are very likely other stupid yearbook photos, fraternity pranks, etc., in many backgrounds. The issue with the two blackface cases versus sexual assault are very different, and Northam’s fumbling story change compounds his problems, but the point is that just about everyone out there has stupid stuff in their past. Will the category of offense be widened from just the Demo favorites of race and #MeToo?”

https://patriotpost.us/articles/61022-virginia-dem-scandal-spirals


Lower Courts Obstruct Trump at Unprecedented Rate15

Lower federal courts have issued injunctions blocking President Donald Trump’s executive actions a record 30 times. “That number,” The Daily Signal reports16, matches “the total for the first 42 of the 45 presidents so far in American history.” We knew judicial activism was a problem, but that’s astounding.

The majority of the injunctions, the Signal explains, were “against Trump administration policies providing extreme vetting of immigrants from countries deemed to be failed states; denying funding to sanctuary cities that won’t cooperate with federal law enforcement on immigration law; and tightening the asylum process for illegal immigrants, among other issues.” In other words, policies that aren’t exactly conventional.

To make matters worse, these injunctions weren’t merely regional in scope but national. Not surprisingly, the source for most of the injunctions came from judges sitting on some the country’s most left-leaning courts, such as the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Prior to 1963, no lower court had ever issued national injunctions, and it wasn’t until the 1980s that nationwide injunctions began to become more common.

In fact, Barack Obama’s Justice Department pushed back against the practice, arguing, “A trial court abuses its discretion by fashioning an injunction, which is overly broad.” And last year, House Republicans proposed the Injunctive Authority Clarification Act, which would have put limits on nationwide injunctions, confining the rulings for the most part to the district over which the court presides, but it was never voted on.

Back in 2016, Justice Samuel Alito noted the obvious problem with lower courts being empowered to issue nationwide injunctions, writing that it “invites the loser to seek to obtain in court what they could not achieve in the political arena.” Precisely. What we have witnessed through the first two years of Trump’s presidency attests to the reality of this problem.

Michael Morley, an assistant professor at Florida State University College of Law, points out, “All it take is a single litigant anywhere in the nation to win one time, and then they are able to obtain effectively nationwide relief enforcing the rights of all people throughout the nation. So, you have a fundamental asymmetry where the government has to win everywhere, whereas to have a policy or a regulation or an order invalidated, a challenger only has to win once.”

One thing is certain — the more lower courts continue to issue nationwide injunctions against Trump, the more the pressure grows for legislation to be passed that prevents this abuse.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/61010-lower-courts-obstruct-trump-at-unprecedented-rate


Dems Ramp up ‘Ridiculous Partisan Investigations’17

Nate Jackson

“An economic miracle is taking place in the United States — and the only things that can stop it are foolish wars, politics, or ridiculous partisan investigations,” Donald Trump declared in his State of the Union Address18 Tuesday night. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi defiantly responded, “It was a threat. It was an all-out threat. The president should not bring threats to the floor of the House. He said he wasn’t going to cooperate unless we didn’t exercise our constitutional responsibility to oversight.” Cry us a river.

The Democrats’ strategy since Trump’s surprising election win has been to hamstring him with investigations. That’s what the Mueller/Comey/Clinton collusion19 is all about. And as we’ve asserted before, a recession that boosts Demo chances in 2020 would be a cherry on top for them20.

Democrats wasted no time after the SOTU. On Wednesday, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff launched a new probe into the president’s foreign business relationships and if those are affecting U.S. foreign policy. “He has no basis to do that,” Trump retorted. “He’s just a political hack who’s trying to build a name for himself. It’s just presidential harassment and it’s unfortunate and it really does hurt our country.” The Hill also reports21, “The House Intelligence Committee on Wednesday voted to give special counsel Robert Mueller transcripts from dozens of witness interviews from the panel’s Russia probe.”

Meanwhile, on the House Ways and Means subcommittee docket today: examining the disclosure of presidential tax returns — a move clearly meant as a shot across the bow for Trump’s decision to withhold his own returns22.
37  Theology / Bible Study / The Paradox of Grace on: February 06, 2019, 06:00:36 PM
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The Paradox of Grace
by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam


In "the gospel of the grace of God" we find a striking paradox: God Himself condemning the righteous and justifying the wicked; forsaking the perfect and helping evildoers.

Behold the spotless Lamb on Calvary as He cries, "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" Judas kisses Him in base betrayal; wicked men spit in His face, mock Him, smite Him, scourge Him, crown Him with thorns and nail Him to a tree! And God, the Judge of all, does nothing to stop them! Indeed, He Himself unsheathes His sword and smites the one Person in all history who could truly say, "I delight to do Thy will, 0 my God."

And this is not all, for on the other hand God saves Saul of Tarsus, Christ's bitterest enemy, "a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious," his hands dripping, as it were, with the blood of martyrs. To him God shows "grace…exceeding abundant" and "all longsuffering" (I Tim. 1:13-16). Indeed, He sends him forth to proclaim openly to all men that:

"To him that worketh not, but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness" (Rom. 4:5).

How can all this be right? The answer is that the One who died in agony and disgrace at Calvary was God Himself, manifested in the flesh. There, at Calvary, "God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them" (II Cor. 5:19). It was the Judge Himself, stepping down from the throne to the cross to represent the sinner and pay for him the full penalty of his sins.

And who will say this is injustice? Injustice? It is perfect justice and more. It is grace!

Under the terms of the Law we find God "showing mercy unto thousands of them that love Me and keep My commandments" (Ex. 20:6). But grace is infinitely more: it is the riches of God's mercy and love to "the children of disobedience…the children of wrath" (Eph. 2:2-7), paying the penalty for their sins Himself in strictest accord with perfect and infinite righteousness!
38  Entertainment / Poetry/Prose / 'Tom Thumbs' in grace! on: February 06, 2019, 05:58:37 PM
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'Tom Thumbs' in grace!

(Charles Spurgeon, "Flowers from a Puritan's Garden" 1883)

"Though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God's Word all over again. You need milk, not solid food!" Hebrews 5:12

"An infant, if he should continue an infant always, would be a monster!"

However pleased the parents had been with the little one when it was a babe, they would soon be deeply distressed if year after year it still remained a tiny thing. Indeed, they would consider it a great calamity to be the parents of a dwarf.

What, then, shall we say of those professors who never grow? They are no more holy after fifty years! They are infants at sixty years of age!

I have in my house, pictures of my twin sons, taken on their birthdays for twenty-one years. They begin in the cradle, and end as full-grown young men.

But, alas, I have spiritual children whom I wheeled about in the stroller twenty years ago--and they are babies still, needing as much care as ever, and are not able to walk alone! Ah me, that so many who ought to be warriors, are weaklings; that those who should be men of six feet tall, are so stunted as to be mere 'Tom Thumbs' in grace!

O for grace to grow in grace, and especially in the knowledge of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. God save us from a life which does not grow, and from a growth which is not healthy!

"For this very reason, make every effort to add . . .
  to your faith, goodness;
  and to goodness, knowledge;
  and to knowledge, self-control;
  and to self-control, perseverance;
  and to perseverance, godliness." 2 Peter 1:5-6

"Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation!" 1 Peter 2:2
39  ChristiansUnite and Announcements / ChristiansUnite and Announcements / The Patriot Post Digest 2-6-2019 on: February 06, 2019, 05:55:31 PM
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TOP HEADLINE SUMMARY

Among those in attendance last night were three D-Day veterans. President Trump stated, “Here with us tonight are three of those heroes: Private First Class Joseph Reilly, Staff Sergeant Irving Locker, and Sergeant Herman Zeitchik. Gentlemen, we salute you.” (The Daily Signal43)
$1 trillion deficits are on the horizon, but that was conspicuously omitted from the State of the Union. “The deficit is not a sexy issue and it’s not something that’s likely to get solved quickly,” says Reason44. “And, of course, talking about something in the State of the Union Address is not the same as actually doing something. Still, the talking matters.”
Tax reform for the win: “On Tuesday, ExxonMobil announced it would invest a whopping $10 billion in America’s infrastructure as it develops the Golden Pass liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility in Sabine Pass. According to Exxon Mobil, ‘Construction will begin in the first quarter of 2019 and the facility is expected to start up in 2024.’” (The Daily Wire45)
“The U.S. government is preparing to begin construction of more border walls and fencing in South Texas’ Rio Grande Valley, likely on federally owned land set aside as wildlife refuge property,” according to the Associated Press46. “Congress last March approved more than $600 million for 33 miles (53 kilometers) of new barriers in the Rio Grande Valley. While President Donald Trump and top Democrats remain in a standoff over Trump’s demand for $5.7 billion in border wall funding, U.S. Customs and Border Protection has pushed ahead with building what’s already funded.”
Abortion crackdown? “A boring, low-stress Supreme Court term just got substantially more interesting,” National Review’ David French writes47. “Within two short days, we may learn a great deal about Justice Kavanaugh’s approach to abortion rights and about the willingness of the Court to roll back recent, abortion-friendly jurisprudence.”
“Pope Francis acknowledged for the first time on Tuesday that priests and bishops have sexually abused nuns and several of those clergy have been suspended. Some clergy have abused nuns to the point of ‘sexual slavery,’ the pope said, adding that the Church is addressing the problem and ‘for some time we’ve been working on it.’” (National Review48)
Village academic curriculum: “New Jersey will be the second state to mandate that middle and high school students learn about LGBTQ contributions. Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy signed Senate Bill 1569, which requires schools to adopt curriculums that ‘accurately portray political, economic, and social contributions of persons with disabilities and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people.’” (The Daily Caller49)
Humor: Nancy Pelosi blinks “Please send help” in morse code during the State of the Union (The Babylon Bee50)
Policy: This week, Sen. Patty Murray single-handedly quashed the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, which addresses the Democrats’ new tolerance for infanticide. Alexandra DeSanctis explains “Why a Ban on Infanticide Is Necessary51” in National Review.
Policy: Heritage Foundation experts weighed in with analysis of the president’s policy proposals. Here’s what they had to say52 on immigration, the economy, law, defense and foreign policy, life, energy and infrastructure, health care, and education.
For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit In Our Sights53.

Wednesday Top Headline Summary


OPINION IN BRIEF

Star Parker: “Given that the Democratic Party chose to select a recently defeated political candidate to give a response to the president’s State of the Union address because she is black and a woman, I feel I should also step up and give my response. Although I have not recently lost a governor’s contest, I am black and I am a woman. Democrats want Americans, particularly minority Americans, to believe that a left-wing agenda is what they need and what will define America’s future. I am here to say today that the agenda of the left is the problem, not the solution. For too many years the left — and I am talking here about those with a hard-core secular humanist and socialist agenda — have been dominating discourse in our minority communities. America’s future is in the values that defined it from the beginning. Christianity, capitalism and the Constitution.”


SHORT CUTS

For the record: “I’m not surprised, but some part of me can’t believe we’re at a place where the President of the U.S. said ‘we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country’ and the Democratic speaker of the House deliberately did not applaud.” —Mark Hemingway

Re: The Left: “Don’t get me wrong, I’m all into the strong-woman applause going on, but it has to be said that it is a little sad that the first thing House female Democrats really chose to celebrate [last night] was … themselves.” —Kimberley Strassel

Demo-gogues: “There’s very little nice to say about [the State of the Union Address]. It’s sort of like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and the excitement and the enthusiasm was all in the Mr. Hyde parts. You can’t talk about comity and working together and give a speech that is so divisive. That just doesn’t fly. So in the areas where he tried to reach out — drug prices, transportation, infrastructure — there was no meat. There was no enthusiasm. All the enthusiasm was for the divisive parts like immigration, abortion, things like that. So it was not a good speech.” —Chuck Schumer

Belly laugh of the week: “I think Stacey Abrams showed the president what real leadership was last night. She was thoughtful, she was caring, she talked about her family — and the American dream is fading out of reach for too many American families — and the president was political, divisive, calculating, even nasty at times.” —Chuck Schumer

Braying Jenny: “I don’t even know why [Trump] wants to come and give the State of the Union. The state of the union under him has not been good. And he has been divisive. And I think he’s putting us all in harm’s way. And so he is not worthy of being listened to. … I’m not looking forward to his State of the Union, and I hope people will turn the television off!” —Rep. Maxine Waters

Braying Jackass: “One of the most difficult conclusions for me in the last two years as I looked into Russia’s meddling in our affairs, as well as the growing trend towards autocracy around the world, is the realization that the threat to our democracy right now is most pronounced from within. … That doesn’t mean that the other threats are also not serious. They are. Russia and China are trying to push forward their authoritarian models and really challenging the idea of democracy. But that is, I think, secondary to the threat we face right now from within.” —Rep. Adam Schiff

And last… “I guess I’m supposed to well up with tears of pride because a bunch of women were elected to Congress. Sorry, no. Most of the new congresswomen are self-obsessed, infanticidal, socialist radicals. The fact that they happen to have two X chromosomes is no consolation.” —Matt Walsh

https://patriotpost.us/articles/60996-wednesday-short-cuts


Join our editors and staff in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families. We also humbly ask prayer for your Patriot team, that our mission would seed and encourage the spirit of Liberty in the hearts and minds of our countrymen.

Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis

Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher
40  ChristiansUnite and Announcements / ChristiansUnite and Announcements / The Patriot Post Digest 2-6-2019 on: February 06, 2019, 05:54:33 PM
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The Patriot Post® · Mid-Day Digest

Feb. 6, 2019

https://patriotpost.us/digests/61003-mid-day-digest

THE FOUNDATION

“The ingredients which constitute energy in the Executive are, first, unity…” —Alexander Hamilton in Federalist No. 701

https://patriotpost.us/fqd/61002-founders-quote-daily

IN TODAY’S EDITION

The difference in Republican optimism and Democrat pessimism.2
Daily Features: More Analysis3, Columnists4, Headlines5, Opinion in Brief6, Short Cuts7, Memes8, and Cartoons9.

FEATURED ANALYSIS
Editor’s Note: Stay tuned after lunch for Mark Alexander’s comprehensive analysis of Donald Trump’s second State of the Union.


The 2019 SOTU Review: A Trump Administration Triumph10

Mark Alexander and Nate Jackson

Today is Ronald Reagan’s11 birthday. In the years since his presidency, through the Bush (41), Clinton12, Bush (43), and Obama13 years, analyzing State of the Union addresses14 has been more about endurance than inspiration.

But, surprisingly, that changed last year with Donald Trump’s15 first address, “Our New American Moment16.” His second address17 last night was even better than the first. These SOTUs did not follow the worn template of providing a wish list, but instead were a running recap of administration and congressional successes over the last two years.

In both instances, President Trump’s remarks strongly contrasted the difference in Republican optimism and Democrat pessimism — Republican advocacy for Liberty18 and self-reliance versus Democrats’19 advocacy for dependence20, statism21, and now unapologetic socialism22 based on their failed policies of the past23.

We concluded years ago that the Democrat Party was not one of the oppressed but of the depressed. And that deranged institutional depression24 has become epidemic.

Again in his latest SOTU, Trump instilled pride in who we are as a nation. It was framed by unity rather than partisanship. “Victory is not winning for our party,” he declared. “Victory is winning for our country.” He began and ended his address with calls for unity and he highlighted numerous areas that should enlist universal agreement, largely about America’s promise and historical achievements. There were several issues in the middle of his speech that should unify Americans, especially the Trump administration’s strong economic record25. But the Democrats would have no part in a call for unity.

Trump opened, saying, “Members of Congress, the state of our union is strong.” Yet over his shoulder, Nancy “Sourpuss” Pelosi shook her head. Clearly, good news is bad news for Democrats, whose best political hope is to drive the nation into recession26 before 2020.

Americans may disagree on how to achieve border security27 and an orderly legal immigration process28, but we should all be able to agree that caravans of migrants should not be free to cross our border.

Trump noted, “In the past, most of the people in this room voted for a wall — but the proper wall never got built. I will get it built.” He completely shifted the immigration debate to protecting American jobs and people.

Trump declared, “Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country. We are born free, and we will stay free. Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country.” That shouldn’t be controversial, although socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders and other socialist Democrats looked like they were suffering heart failure.

Record-low unemployment — especially for black and Hispanic Americans — rising wages across the board, and an overall strong economy are not partisan issues; they are facts. Yet in each instance when we should all agree, many if not most Democrats sat on their hands rather than applauding. However, Trump did get almost the entire room chanting “USA, USA” after mentioning the stats on the number of women now in the workforce.

People may not see eye to eye on when abortion is appropriate — there’s not much common ground between “never” and “most of the time.” But it should be beyond dispute to say that children should not be killed at the moment of or even after birth.

“Let us work together to build a culture that cherishes innocent life,” Trump said. “And let us reaffirm a fundamental truth: All children — born and unborn — are made in the holy image of God.”

Notably, Trump did receive almost unanimous approval for what we believe was the best gathering of gallery guests29 in any State of the Union.

Trump concluded, “We must choose whether we are defined by our differences — or whether we dare to transcend them. We must choose whether we squander our inheritance — or whether we proudly declare that we are Americans: we do the incredible, we defy the impossible, we conquer the unknown. We must choose between greatness or gridlock, results or resistance, vision or vengeance, incredible progress or pointless destruction. Tonight, I ask you to choose greatness.”

We rate this high among the best modern-day SOTUs, and many who viewed it agree. The Leftmedia network30 CBS reluctantly reported its findings regarding public approval of Trump’s State of the Union: 76% of those watching the speech approved, including a 30% approval rating among Democrats and 82% among Independents. Notably, 72% approved of his immigration plan. (We hope Trump will not derail the success of this SOTU, as is his penchant, with some petulant, dis-unifying social-media post31.)

Of course, chief among those not approving were Pelosi and DNC Chairman Tom Perez.

For her part, Pelosi concluded: “It will take days to fact-check all the misrepresentations that the president made tonight. Instead of fearmongering and manufacturing a crisis at the border, President Trump should commit to signing the bipartisan conference committee’s bill to keep government open and provide strong, smart border security solutions. … President Trump must now take concrete steps to work with Democrats to strengthen the health and economic security of families across America. After two years of the president’s empty words, the American people deserve real results.”

Actually, this is a fine example of Pelosi’s “alternate universe” perspective. The Trump administration and Republican Congress have clearly strengthened “the health and economic security of families across America” and, demonstrably, the American people are experiencing “real results.”

And for those watching the SOTU, there is now a consistent Pelosi poker tell — when she knows Trump has succeeded where Democrats have failed, she starts doing that smirk thing, as if trying to get the spinach out of her teeth. The Demo/MSM machine30 was certainly consumed with what it claimed was a teenager’s smirk32 two weeks ago — but not a word on Pelosi’s smirk, and all the others on the left side of the room last night.

Predictably, according to Perez: “After attending Trump’s State of the Union tonight, I know this for certain: The only way that we will be able to stop his outrageous, divisive agenda is by taking back the Senate and putting a Democrat in the White House in 2020. I am going to fight like hell to make sure we’re building the infrastructure necessary to continue to elect Democrats up and down the ballot in the months and years ahead.”

The bottom line: There will be no unity in the next two years, because Democrats and their Leftmedia publicists thrive on division and partisanship, the antithesis of unity. They have reconstructed their political platform on a “Hate Trump33” foundation, rejecting Rule of Law34, the most basic tenets of morality, and America’s First Principles35.

https://patriotpost.us/articles/61001-the-2019-sotu-review-a-trump-administration-triumph


ON OUR WEBSITE TODAY

Dems SOTU Rebuttal Offers Only Socialism36 — Stacey Adams speech played more like a campaign ad than a rebuttal to Trump’s record.
Trump Critics Admit Success of Association Health Plans37 — Despite early warnings that deregulation would lead to disaster, the truth is the opposite.
Warren Attempts to Whitewash Her Not-So-White Lie38 — Caught red-handed, the Demo presidential hopeful finally apologizes for phony ancestry claims.
New York’s Budget Rendezvous With SALT Deductions39 — Cuomo revealed that New York has a revenue shortfall of $2.3 billion.
Social ‘Justice’ Is Unforgiving40 — The Left’s “morality” accepts no apologies, only unending groveling and kowtowing to its agenda.
Humor Video: A Brief History of Socialism41 — If only we try socialism one more time, they keep telling us…
41  ChristiansUnite and Announcements / ChristiansUnite and Announcements / The Patriot Post - Alexander's Column 2-6-2019 on: February 06, 2019, 05:52:31 PM
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It includes humanitarian assistance, more law enforcement, drug detection at our ports, closing loopholes that enable child smuggling, and plans for a new physical barrier, or wall, to secure the vast areas between our ports of entry. In the past, most of the people in this room voted for a wall — but the proper wall never got built. I’ll get it built. … Simply put, walls work and walls save lives.

On Women in the Workforce:

No one has benefitted more from our thriving economy than women, who have filled 58% of the new jobs created in the last year. All Americans can be proud that we have more women in the workforce than ever before.

(Standing ovation and chants of “USA! USA!” even from many Democrats — with the huge caveat that they were cheering themselves for taking over the House last November.)

On Trade:

We are now making it clear to China that after years of targeting our industries, and stealing our intellectual property, the theft of American jobs and wealth has come to an end.

Therefore, we recently imposed tariffs on $250 billion of Chinese goods — and now our Treasury is receiving billions of dollars a month from a country that never gave us a dime. But I don’t blame China for taking advantage of us — I blame our leaders and representatives for allowing this travesty to happen. I have great respect for President Xi, and we are now working on a new trade deal with China. But it must include real, structural change to end unfair trade practices, reduce our chronic trade deficit, and protect American jobs.

Another historic trade blunder was the catastrophe known as NAFTA. I have met the men and women of Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, New Hampshire, and many other states whose dreams were shattered by NAFTA. For years, politicians promised them they would negotiate for a better deal. But no one ever tried — until now.

Our new U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement — or USMCA — will replace NAFTA and deliver for American workers: bringing back our manufacturing jobs, expanding American agriculture, protecting intellectual property, and ensuring that more cars are proudly stamped with four beautiful words — made in the USA. Tonight, I am also asking you to pass the United States Reciprocal Trade Act.

On the Rise of Socialism:

We stand with the Venezuelan people in their noble quest for freedom — and we condemn the brutality of the Maduro regime, whose socialist policies have turned that nation from being the wealthiest in South America into a state of abject poverty and despair.

Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country. America was founded on Liberty and independence — not government coercion, domination, and control. We are born free, and we will stay free. Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country.

On Syria, Afghanistan and Iran:

Our brave troops have now been fighting in the Middle East for almost 19 years. In Afghanistan and Iraq, nearly 7,000 American heroes have given their lives. More than 52,000 Americans have been badly wounded. We have spent more than $7 trillion in the Middle East. As a candidate for president, I pledged a new approach. Great nations do not fight endless wars. When I took office, ISIS controlled more than 20,000 square miles in Iraq and Syria. Today, we have liberated virtually all of that territory from the grip of these bloodthirsty killers. Now, as we work with our allies to destroy the remnants of ISIS, it is time to give our brave warriors in Syria a warm welcome home.

(Republicans in the Senate have broken with Trump32 over Syria and Afghanistan withdrawals. There is concern among military leaders that leaving Syria and Afghanistan will result in a resurgence of Islamists, as was the case when Barack Obama4 and Hillary Clinton33 decided, ahead of Obama’s 2012 reelection, to abandoned Iraq34.)

My administration has acted decisively to confront the world’s leading state sponsor of terror: the radical regime in Iran.

To ensure this corrupt dictatorship never acquires nuclear weapons, I withdrew the United States from the disastrous Iran nuclear deal35. And last fall, we put in place the toughest sanctions ever imposed on a country. We will not avert our eyes from a regime that chants death to America and threatens genocide against the Jewish people.

(Trump turned his attention to another of his gallery guests20, Judah Samet, a survivor of both the Nazi Holocaust and the Tree of Life synagogue attack in Pittsburgh36. He also introduced another holocaust survivor, Joshua Kaufman, a prisoner at Dachau Concentration Camp, who was seated next to former Army Sergeant Herman Zeitchik, who was among the American soldiers who helped liberate Dachau. As Trump mentioned Samet’s 81st birthday, the full House serenaded him37.)

Affirming Life for Children Before Birth:

There could be no greater contrast to the beautiful image of a mother holding her infant child than the chilling displays our nation saw in recent days. Lawmakers in New York cheered with delight upon the passage of legislation that would allow a baby to be ripped from the mother’s womb moments before birth. These are living, feeling, beautiful babies who will never get the chance to share their love and dreams with the world. And then, we had the case of the governor of Virginia where he basically stated he would execute a baby after birth. To defend the dignity of every person, I am asking the Congress to pass legislation to prohibit the late-term abortion of children who can feel pain in the mother’s womb.

Let us work together to build a culture that cherishes innocent life. And let us reaffirm a fundamental truth: All children — born and unborn — are made in the holy image of God.

The final part of my agenda is to protect America’s National Security. … Under my administration, we will never apologize for advancing America’s interests.

In Closing:

Here tonight, we have legislators from across this magnificent republic. You have come from the rocky shores of Maine and the volcanic peaks of Hawaii; from the snowy woods of Wisconsin and the red deserts of Arizona; from the green farms of Kentucky and the golden beaches of California. Together, we represent the most extraordinary nation in all of history. What will we do with this moment? How will we be remembered? …

We must choose whether we are defined by our differences — or whether we dare to transcend them. We must choose whether we will squander our inheritance — or whether we will proudly declare that we are Americans. We do the incredible. We defy the impossible. We conquer the unknown.

This is the time to re-ignite the American imagination. This is the time to search for the tallest summit, and set our sights on the brightest star. This is the time to rekindle the bonds of love and loyalty and memory that link us together as citizens, as neighbors, as patriots. This is our future — our fate — and our choice to make. I am asking you to choose greatness.

No matter the trials we face, no matter the challenges to come, we must go forward together. We must keep America first in our hearts. We must keep freedom alive in our souls. And we must always keep faith in America’s destiny — that one Nation, under God, must be the hope and the promise and the light and the glory among all the nations of the world!

Thank you. God bless you, God bless America, and good night!

(The Heritage Foundation has in-depth analysis38 and SOTU fact-checks39.)

Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis
Pro Deo et Libertate — 1776
42  ChristiansUnite and Announcements / ChristiansUnite and Announcements / The Patriot Post - Alexander's Column 2-6-2019 on: February 06, 2019, 05:51:27 PM
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Predictably, according to Perez: “After attending Trump’s State of the Union tonight, I know this for certain: The only way that we will be able to stop his outrageous, divisive agenda is by taking back the Senate and putting a Democrat in the White House in 2020. I am going to fight like hell to make sure we’re building the infrastructure necessary to continue to elect Democrats up and down the ballot in the months and years ahead.”

The bottom line: There will be no unity in the next two years, because Democrats and their Leftmedia publicists thrive on division and partisanship, the antithesis of unity. They have reconstructed their political platform on a “Hate Trump25” foundation, rejecting Rule of Law26, the most basic tenets of morality, and America’s First Principles27.

(If you are interested in our coverage of the Left’s response to the SOTU, read our summary of Stacey Abrams’s remarks28. Suffice it to say, it was all about division, particularly racial division, but the fact is, her Democrat Party has turned MLK’s dream into a nightmare29.)

As is my practice after SOTUs, what follows are some key excerpts from President Trump’s remarks. But first, as I have done in the past with Barack Obama’s4 SOTUs, which were inundated with references to himself, the Trump references were very different. In his 5,200-word speech, he referred to himself 39 times, versus 99 references to “our,” 97 references to “we,” and 15 references to “us.”

President Trump:

Mr. Vice President, members of Congress, the First Lady of the United States — and my fellow Americans. We meet tonight at a moment of unlimited potential. Millions of our fellow citizens are watching us now, gathered in this great chamber, hoping that we will govern not as two parties but as one Nation.

(Trump opened his remarks, bypassing the scheduled formal introduction by Speaker Nancy Pelosi.)

The agenda I will layout this evening is not a Republican agenda or a Democrat agenda, it’s the agenda of the American people. Many of us campaigned on the same core promises: to defend American jobs and demand fair trade for American workers; to rebuild and revitalize our nation’s infrastructure; to reduce the price of health care and prescription drugs; to create an immigration system that is safe, lawful, modern and secure; and to pursue a foreign policy that puts America’s interests first.

There is a new opportunity in American politics, if only we have the courage to seize it. Victory is not winning for our party. Victory is winning for our country.

In the 20th century, America saved freedom, transformed science, and redefined the middle-class standard of living for the entire world to see, and when you get down to it, there’s nothing anywhere in the world that can compete with America.

Now, we must step boldly and bravely into the next chapter of this great American adventure, and we must create a new standard of living for the 21st century. An amazing quality of life for all of our citizens is within our reach. We can make our communities safer, our families stronger, our culture richer, our faith deeper, and our middle class bigger and more prosperous than ever before.

But we must reject the politics of revenge, resistance, and retribution — and embrace the boundless potential of cooperation, compromise, and the common good.

Together, we can break decades of political stalemate. We can bridge old divisions, heal old wounds, build new coalitions, forge new solutions, and unlock the extraordinary promise of America’s future. The decision is ours to make. We must choose between greatness or gridlock, results or resistance, vision or vengeance, incredible progress or pointless destruction.

Tonight, I ask you to choose greatness.

(At this juncture, Trump summarized his administration’s policy successes16 — economic, regulatory cuts, and energy production. Notably, most Democrats did not applaud the economic achievements, including those most directly benefiting middle-income earners.)

After 24 months of rapid progress, our economy is the envy of the world, our military is the most powerful on earth, and America is winning each and every day. Members of Congress: The State of our Union is strong. Our country is vibrant and our economy is thriving like never before.

(Chants of “USA! USA!”)

The only thing that can stop it are foolish wars, politics, or ridiculous partisan investigations. If there is going to be peace and legislation, there cannot be war and investigation. It just doesn’t work that way! We must be united at home to defeat our adversaries abroad.

(This was a reference to the Mueller/Comey/Clinton collusion30 to set up Trump for a takedown.)

This new era of cooperation can start with finally confirming the more than 300 highly qualified nominees who are still stuck in the Senate — some after years of waiting.

(There was no specific mention of Trump’s successful federal judicial nominations including two Supreme Court justices — there are more than 50 judicial nominations still awaiting approval.)

On Immigration:

Now is the time for the Congress to show the world that America is committed to ending illegal immigration31 and putting the ruthless coyotes, cartels, drug dealers, and human traffickers out of business. … This is a moral issue. The lawless state of our southern border is a threat to the safety, security, and financial well‑being of all Americans. We have a moral duty to create an immigration system that protects the lives and jobs of our citizens. This includes our obligation to the millions of immigrants living here today, who followed the rules and respected our laws. Legal immigrants enrich our nation and strengthen our society in countless ways. I want people to come into our country, but they have to come in legally.

Tonight, I am asking you to defend our very dangerous southern border out of love and devotion to our fellow citizens and to our country. No issue better illustrates the divide between America’s working class and America’s political class than illegal immigration. Wealthy politicians and donors push for open borders while living their lives behind walls and gates and guards. Meanwhile, working class Americans are left to pay the price for mass illegal migration — reduced jobs, lower wages, overburdened schools and hospitals, increased crime, and a depleted social safety net.

Tolerance for illegal immigration is not compassionate — it is cruel. One in three women is sexually assaulted on the long journey north. Smugglers use migrant children as human pawns to exploit our laws and gain access to our country. Human traffickers and sex traffickers take advantage of the wide-open areas between our ports of entry to smuggle thousands of young girls and women into the United States and to sell them into prostitution and modern-day slavery. Tens of thousands of innocent Americans are killed by lethal drugs that cross our border and flood into our cities — including meth, heroin, cocaine, and fentanyl. The savage gang, MS-13, now operates in 20 different American States, and they almost all come through our southern border.

Year after year, countless Americans are murdered by criminal illegal aliens. I’ve gotten to know many wonderful Angel Moms, Dads, and families — no one should ever have to suffer the horrible heartache they have endured.

In the last 2 years, our brave ICE officers made 266,000 arrests of criminal aliens, including those charged or convicted of nearly 100,000 assaults, 30,000 sex crimes, and 4,000 killings. My Administration has sent to the Congress a commonsense proposal to end the crisis on our southern border.
43  ChristiansUnite and Announcements / ChristiansUnite and Announcements / The Patriot Post - Alexander's Column 2-6-2019 on: February 06, 2019, 05:50:11 PM
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The Patriot Post® · The 2019 SOTU Review: A Trump Administration Triumph
By Mark Alexander · Feb. 6, 2019

https://patriotpost.us/alexander/61011-the-2019-sotu-review-a-trump-administration-triumph

“I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” —Article II, Section 1, Constitution of the United States1 (1787)
Today we observance Ronald Reagan’s2 birthday. In the years since his presidency, through the Bush (41), Clinton3, Bush (43), and Obama4 years, analyzing State of the Union addresses5 has been more about endurance than inspiration.

But, surprisingly, that changed last year with Donald Trump’s6 first address, “Our New American Moment7.” His second address8 last night was even better than the first. These SOTUs did not follow the worn template of providing a wish list but instead were a running recap of administration and congressional successes over the last two years. The Trump administration’s accomplishments are formidable.

In both instances, President Trump’s remarks strongly contrasted the difference in Republican optimism and Democrat pessimism — Republican advocacy for Liberty9 and self-reliance versus Democrat10 advocacy for dependence11, statism12, and now unapologetic socialism13 based on their failed policies of the past14.

We concluded years ago that the Democrat Party was not one of the oppressed but of the depressed. And that deranged institutional depression15 has become epidemic.

Again in his latest SOTU, Trump instilled pride in who we are as a nation. It was framed by unity rather than partisanship. “Victory is not winning for our party,” he declared. “Victory is winning for our country.” He began and ended his address with calls for unity and he highlighted numerous areas that should enlist universal agreement, largely about America’s promise and historical achievements. There were several issues in the middle of his speech that should unify Americans, especially the Trump administration’s strong economic record16. But Democrats would have no part in a call for unity.

Trump opened by saying, “Members of Congress, the state of our union is strong.” Yet over his shoulder, Nancy “Sourpuss” Pelosi shook her head. Clearly, good news is bad news for Democrats, whose best political hope is to drive the nation into recession17 before 2020.

Americans may disagree on how to achieve border security18 and an orderly legal immigration process19, but we should all be able to agree that caravans of migrants should not be free to cross our border.

Trump noted, “In the past, most of the people in this room voted for a wall — but the proper wall never got built. I will get it built.” He completely shifted the immigration debate to protecting American jobs and people.

Trump declared, “Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country. We are born free, and we will stay free. Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country.” That shouldn’t be controversial, although socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders and other socialist Democrats looked like they were suffering heart failure.

Record-low unemployment — especially for black and Hispanic Americans — rising wages across the board, and an overall strong economy are not partisan issues; they are facts. Yet in each instance when we should all agree, many if not most Democrats sat on their hands rather than applauding. However, Trump did get almost the entire room chanting “USA! USA!” after mentioning the stats on the number of women now in the workforce.

People may not see eye to eye on when abortion is appropriate — there’s not much common ground between “never” and “most of the time.” But it should be beyond dispute to say that children should not be killed at the moment of or even after birth.

“Let us work together to build a culture that cherishes innocent life,” Trump said. “And let us reaffirm a fundamental truth: All children — born and unborn — are made in the holy image of God.”

Notably, Trump did receive almost unanimous approval for what we believe was the best gathering of gallery guests20 in any State of the Union.

Trump concluded, “We must choose whether we are defined by our differences — or whether we dare to transcend them. We must choose whether we squander our inheritance — or whether we proudly declare that we are Americans: we do the incredible, we defy the impossible, we conquer the unknown. We must choose between greatness or gridlock, results or resistance, vision or vengeance, incredible progress or pointless destruction. Tonight, I ask you to choose greatness.”

I rate this high among the best modern-day SOTUs, and many who viewed it agree. The Leftmedia network21 CBS reluctantly reported its findings regarding public approval of Trump’s State of the Union: 76% of those watching the speech approved, including a 30% approval rating among Democrats and 82% among independents. Notably, 72% approved of his immigration plan. (We hope Trump will not derail the success of this SOTU, as is his penchant, with some petulant, dis-unifying social-media post22.)

Of course, last year’s CBS polling23, also found that almost 80% of Americans who watched the SOTU address “felt he was trying to unite the country, rather than divide it. Two-thirds said the speech made them feel proud.”

Didn’t work then either.

Chief among those not approving were Pelosi and DNC Chairman Tom Perez.

For her part, Pelosi concluded: “It will take days to fact-check all the misrepresentations that the president made tonight. Instead of fearmongering and manufacturing a crisis at the border, President Trump should commit to signing the bipartisan conference committee’s bill to keep government open and provide strong, smart border security solutions. … President Trump must now take concrete steps to work with Democrats to strengthen the health and economic security of families across America. After two years of the president’s empty words, the American people deserve real results.”

Actually, this is a fine example of Pelosi’s “alternate universe” perspective. The Trump administration and Republican Congress have clearly strengthened “the health and economic security of families across America” and, demonstrably, the American people are experiencing “real results.”

And for those who are Pelosi observers, she has a poker tell smirk — when she knows Trump has succeeded where Democrats have failed, she starts doing that smirk thing, as if trying to get the spinach out of her teeth. The Demo/MSM machine21 was certainly consumed with what it claimed was a teenager’s smirk24 two weeks ago — but not a word on Pelosi’s smirk, and all the other Demo smirks on the left side of the room.
44  Theology / Bible Prescription Shop / Christ, the Believer's Refuge and Consolation on: February 05, 2019, 04:53:46 PM
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From Grace Gems - Free and Public Domain:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
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Christ, the Believer's Refuge and Consolation

By Archibald Alexander

Often the first views of Christ are very partial. Perhaps the soul that had considered its case as hopeless begins to see and understand that Christ is able to save it, as desperate as its condition seemed to be; and even this, which to many would seem as a small matter, is to a convinced soul almost in despair—as life from the dead. Oh, to be assured that salvation is even possible, fills the soul with a delight it never before experienced! Hope now takes the place of despondency; and the soul into which this first ray of light is darted, purposes never to give up seeking until salvation is obtained. And, in its progress, one of its greatest difficulties is to suppress a continually rising thought, that a change has been experienced. As sincere souls are more apprehensive of no danger than of false hope, they become alarmed when they find themselves insensibly sliding into the opinion that they are already Christians; and yet this persuasion is hard to be resisted, because it is based on the evidences of piety contained in the Word of God, and laid down by judicious divines.

The blessed effect of flying to this refuge which is set before us is "strong consolation." No feeling with which we have an acquaintance is more delightful than an assurance of deliverance from a great impending calamity. And as no danger to which we can be exposed is comparable to that of everlasting misery—so no enjoyment is so sweet as the joy of salvation. It is described as "inexpressible and full of glory" (1 Peter 1:8). It cannot be otherwise but that there should be peace and joy in believing—for he who truly believes must have some view of Christ as an all-sufficient Savior. He must have some apprehension of the refuge provided for guilty sinners; yes, must have fled to this refuge, which act cannot take place without experiencing something of that repose and comfort which must necessarily follow from the discovery of a way of escape from the impending wrath of God.

But it is evident that though there is ample provision made for strong consolation to all who fly to this refuge—yet the comfort enjoyed will generally be in proportion to the strength of the faith exercised. Often, faith in its commencement is like a grain of mustard-seed—so small, that in the midst of the darkness and corruption of the human heart, it can scarcely be discerned.

There is in many a gloomy, melancholy temperament, or such a degree of suspicion and diffidence of themselves—that they cannot easily be persuaded that they are in a safe state. Their comfort is therefore greatly marred by doubts and fears which accompany some pious persons through their whole pilgrimage.

There are also, often, mistakes entertained respecting the nature of true conversion. It is assumed as a truth, that this change is in all cases very great and perceptible; and as they have never experienced anything of this sort, they suppose that they are still impenitent. There is, moreover, some degree of perverseness in some serious people in relation to this matter. They get into the habit of taking sides against themselves, and of constantly uttering complaints of their unhappy state and also of refusing that consolation which the gospel freely offers to persons in their condition. Such persons may be said to deprive themselves of consolation.

But it seems proper that our spiritual comforts should rise and fall with the degree of strength or weakness in our faith and love. If we could enjoy strong consolation while faith and love were feeble—it would prevent us from using suitable exertion to rise and grow in our spiritual attainments.

There is, however, in the promises of God a rich fountain, from whence streams of strong consolation may at any time be drawn by the exercise of a living faith. All other joy fades away in the near prospect of death and eternity. It is earthly in its source and cannot endure the bright light of eternity to shine upon it. But the consolations which are found in Christ become richer and stronger the more we meditate on the solemn realities of the future world. Indeed, much of this strong consolation experienced by the believer, arises from an assured hope of heavenly felicity. It is the anticipation of future blessedness, which fills the heart with a joy that cannot be expressed.

If, then, we would partake of this "strong consolation," let us be strong in faith—not staggering at the promise through unbelief, but being fully persuaded that what God has promised, He will surely perform. Let us hold fast the beginning of our confidence, encouraging our hearts to embrace the promises in all their fullness and freeness. Let us come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy.

From what has been said, it may be inferred that there is good reason for the name "gospel"—"good news." For to the sinner, justly condemned by the unalterable law of God—it opens a safe refuge to which the guiltiest may flee. I would, therefore, now invite, exhort, and entreat every sinner to avail himself speedily of this safe retreat.

Fly from impending wrath! The storm of divine vengeance lowers over your head! Unless you get into some safe shelter, it will soon overtake you, and will surely overwhelm you and plunge you into endless perdition. Escape then—escape for your lives! There is no time to be lost. The door of mercy is now open, but none can tell how soon it may be closed forever.

Let all beware of false refuges. Of these, there are many into which deluded souls enter in search of safety, but by which they are only exposed to a more dreadful destruction. They can furnish no real shelter from the storm of divine wrath. The most they can do is to afford a momentary ease by cherishing false hopes. But when the hope of the hypocrite perishes, as it certainly will—then he is left in a more miserable condition than if he had never indulged any hope.

Among false refuges, we may mention:

Infidelity, or the fond persuasion that there is no danger of future punishment.

A trust in a decent, moral life—without any saving knowledge of the crucified Savior.

Self-righteousness, or a dependence on the exact performance of religious rites and duties.

Also the vain self-confidence of fanatics and antinomians, who trust to their own disordered imaginations or deceitful hearts. Fly not to any of these, for they are all refuges of lies.

As long as the Christian is in this world, he needs a refuge to which he may flee in seasons of affliction and danger. In himself, there is no help nor strength. He is like a defenseless, timorous dove, liable to be devoured by every rapacious bird of prey. If he had no place of refuge, he could not escape destruction. But having once entered the house of refuge, he is safe. No enemy dare pursue him within this sacred refuge—or if he should there be assaulted, he has at hand a mighty Redeemer.

The believer, having found a safe refuge, should be careful to remain within the limits prescribed. The manslayer, though acquitted, could not with safety leave the city of refuge during the lifetime of the high priest, and that might often be as long as he himself lived.

But our High Priest ever lives, and therefore we must ever remain in the refuge to which we have fled. There is safety there, and nowhere else. Even when we leave this world, we are only transferred to a higher, holier refuge!

Let condemned and perishing sinners, who are exposed daily to the wrath of God, avail themselves of the opportunity of escaping to a place of safety. Let there be no delay in fleeing from the coming wrath. While you delay and procrastinate, divine vengeance may suddenly overtake you. Behold, now is the accepted time, and now is the day of salvation. How can you escape, if you neglect so great salvation? Christ, who has provided this refuge, or rather, who is Himself the sinner's only sure Refuge—kindly invites you to come to Him for rest. And His gracious promise is that "The one who comes to Me, I will by no means cast out" (John 6:37).

Be wise, then, and know the time of your merciful visitation. Many who once occupied precisely the ground which you now do, have eternally perished. They put off the matter too long, and now must lament their folly through eternity! Amen.
45  Theology / Bible Prescription Shop / Christ, the Believer's Refuge and Consolation on: February 05, 2019, 04:52:28 PM
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From Grace Gems - Free and Public Domain:
Very Old - But Beautiful and Timeless Treasures.
http://www.gracegems.org/19/literature.htm
___________________________________________


Christ, the Believer's Refuge and Consolation

By Archibald Alexander

The manslayer, pursued by the avenger of blood, might for a season persuade himself that he could be safe in some other place, and might attempt to conceal himself in some refuge nearer home. Such a course would have been exceedingly unwise, for wherever he was, he would still be exposed to danger, and at an unexpected time his adversary might fall upon him and take away his life. In all the coasts of Israel, there was no place of security for a manslayer but in one of the appointed cities of refuge. Here there was legitimate protection and nowhere else.

Just such is the case of the awakened sinner. He is convinced that danger impends, and that he must seek some refuge from the coming storm. But he is unwilling to take himself to the house of safety, to which he is pointed by the gospel. This method of escape is foreign to his thoughts and uncongenial with his feelings. He naturally turns to the old covenant, under which he was created. The new covenant is strange to him; he does not understand it. He persuades himself that by reforming his life and forsaking those sins which have particularly affected his conscience, he may be safe without fleeing to the house of refuge, which seems to him to be far off and of difficult access.

If conscience is still unsatisfied with his reformation, he will add a diligent attendance on religious duties. He will observe the Sabbath, attend the church, pray in his family and in his closet, and manifest much zeal in all that relates to the externals of religion. In the warmth of his zeal, he may even aspire to the holy ministry, and may be a monitor and reprover of other sinners. He imagines himself to be a religious man, favorably compares himself with the multitude who neglect all attention to religion, and infers that his condition must be safe. He compares his present with his former conduct, and congratulates himself upon the great change in his manner of life. By his fellow-professors he is viewed as an eminent Christian, and his delusion is so complete that he has no suspicion of himself—but thinks that all is well, and that when he dies, he shall be received into Heaven.

The awakened sinner has indeed found a refuge, but alas, it is "a refuge of lies!" He has no shelter but his own rotten righteousness. He entertains high hopes, but they are built on a sandy foundation. At some future time, he will be convinced that he has taken refuge in an unsafe place, from which he must be driven, or miserably perish. The conviction of danger may seize him while there is yet an opportunity of escaping to the true city of refuge which God has appointed, where he will still find safety and protection.

But often the mistake is not detected until it is too late to seek for safety in the true refuge. Some have their eyes opened to see their miserable condition just when they are leaving the world, when it is too late to prepare for eternity. Others do not apprehend their danger until the light of eternity reveals it to them! O wretched condition!

Let all convinced sinners beware of the danger of resting on a false foundation, or seeking safety in a refuge of lies. Let them never feel at ease until they have entirely escaped from the plain of destruction and have taken refuge in the mount of safety. We must be brought to renounce our own righteousness and all dependence on our own works or on our tears of repentance, and must put our trust solely in the all perfect righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The figure, flying for refuge, is as well suited to express the act of faith, when Christ is believed on, as any that could be used. And the phrase laying hold is strikingly descriptive of the earnestness with which the convinced sinner seizes the gracious promise of God, when his eyes are first opened to understand the freeness and fullness of the offered salvation. As a drowning man seizes a rope thrown to him with eagerness, and grasps it with a firmness which nothing can loose—so the sinner pursued by the demands of the broken law flies to the house of refuge which is opened in the gospel, and immediately enjoys the feeling of repose—yes, often of strong consolation. The expression lay hold of would seem to have allusion to the horns of the altar, which the guilty person who sought an asylum grasped.

Although there is considerable variety in the exercises of sincere converts—yet there are some leading points in which the experience of all true believers agrees. As all are by nature in the same condition of condemnation and depravity, as all are equally helpless, as the same gospel is the object of the faith of all, and as regeneration in all is the work of the same Holy Spirit—there can be no essential difference in the nature of the exercises of genuine converts.

All, for example, are convinced of sin and feel themselves to be in a perishing condition. This conviction may, in some, be attended with a much livelier sense of danger than in others. But the degree of fear and terror aroused is a mere circumstance which does not determine either the depth or genuineness of the sinner's convictions—for there may be overwhelming terror where there is but little true conviction; and there may be deep and scriptural conviction where there is little terror and where the mind remains calm. Indeed, it often happens that when conviction is deepest, the mind is most calm. Even when it seems to be on the borders of despair and has almost relinquished hope—there is often a calm but sad serenity, which is not easily accounted for.

There is not only a conviction of sin in all true converts, but a thorough feeling of utter helplessness; not only a conviction of inability to keep the law, but also to repent of sin or receive the gospel. Unbelief is commonly the last sin of which the Spirit convinces the awakened soul: "Of sin, because they do not believe in Me" (John 16:9). But the truly convinced sinner never pleads his inability as his excuse, nor feels less guilty on this account. No— this, he is sensible, is the very core of his iniquity! Other sins are the branches of the evil tree, but this is the bitter root out of which they grow and which arises from receiving Christ by faith. There are evident pulsations of life and vital breathings after God—the effect of renewing grace, before the eyes are opened to behold the reconciled face of God in Christ.

One of the earliest sensible feelings of the regenerated soul is a sense of ingratitude, which breaks the hard heart into a melting frame of godly sorrow. Tears flow apace. This sorrow is sweet in the experience because it is always mingled with a sense of the mercy and goodness of God—and yet there may be no thought of being in a safe state.

Usually, such exercises are soon followed by views of Christ as an able and a willing Savior. These first views of a Savior are sometimes sudden and overwhelming. The soul feels itself transported, as it were, into a new world! Gross darkness is exchanged for "marvelous light." The joy is "unspeakable and full of glory." The soul exults and glories in the cross of Christ; all doubt and fear are expelled, and the heart is at once filled with contrition and with love and peace. These first views of a Savior are often more remarkable and more sensible in the flow of affection which accompanies them than any afterwards experienced. The blessed vision of divine truth thus enjoyed may be repeated twice or thrice, and then the soul is left to what may be called the common encouragements and hopes which the gospel inspires.

But it would be unjust and injurious to many sincere Christians to lay down the preceding as the uniform experience of all the children of God. Far from it; I am persuaded that a large majority of those converted in our day are led in a different way.

Their first views are very obscure, and they can point to no particular time when all darkness and doubt were banished from their minds. The light with them has been like the dawn of day: at first an obscure twilight, but gradually increasing to the clear light of day. They are very sensible of a great change in their views and feelings from what they once were, but how it came about, they cannot tell. All they can say is, "Whereas I was once blind, now I see!"
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