Friday, June 17, 2011

Infinite Forgiveness and God's Injustice

Can we forgive God his injustice? That's right, God is not always just, and He admits it in the Old Testament book of Job. It's really quite incredible, this book. It says that Satan made a bet with God that he could make Job curse God to his face. The Lord bets Satan that he can't. Here it is, verbatim, from Job 1:6:

  One day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came with them.  The LORD said to Satan, “Where have you come from?”
   Satan answered the LORD, “From roaming throughout the earth, going back and forth on it.”
Then the LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.”
   “Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land.  But now stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.”
   The LORD said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your power, but on the man himself do not lay a finger.”
Satan destroys Job's family, possessions, and wealth. But what's worse, Jobs friends tell him that God is always just, so he must deserve it. They don't offer comfort, only condemnation, and they tell Job to keep his mouth shut and be passive. Job's wife says,"Curse God and die!" Then she leaves.

Job does not accept this fate passively. He challenges God, and demands answers for his sufferings, knowing that they are unjust and undeserved. Essentially, he puts the Lord on trial, but the Lord, too, is not passive, and turns the tables on Job. God says,"Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Dress for action like a man;
   I will question you, and you make it known to me. Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?
   Tell me, if you have understanding.
Who determined its measurements—surely you know!
   Or who stretched the line upon it?
On what were its bases sunk,
   or who laid its cornerstone,
when the morning stars sang together
   and all the sons of God shouted for joy?
 Or who shut in the sea with doors
   when it burst out from the womb,
when I made clouds its garment
   and thick darkness its swaddling band,
and prescribed limits for it
   and set bars and doors,
and said, 'Thus far shall you come, and no farther,
   and here shall your proud waves be stayed'?
 Have you commanded the morning since your days began,
   and caused the dawn to know its place..."
The word Israel means "wrestling with God". Job did indeed wrestle with God, and God rewarded him. But first, the Lord dealt very harshly with Job's 'friends' who did not offer him comfort during his affliction. The text continues:

"And it was so, that after the LORD had spoken these words unto Job, the LORD said to Eliphaz the Temanite, "My wrath is kindled against you, and against thy two friends: for ye have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job has.
  Therefore take unto you now seven bullocks and seven rams, and go to my servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and my servant Job shall pray for you: for him will I accept: lest I deal with you after your folly, in that ye have not spoken of me the thing which is right, like my servant Job.
 So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went, and did according as the LORD commanded them: the LORD also accepted Job. [Note: Job's prayers for his friends are key].
 And the LORD turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: also the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before.
 Then came there unto him all his brethren, and all his sisters, and all they that had been of his acquaintance before, and did eat bread with him in his house: and they bemoaned him, and comforted him over all the evil that the LORD had brought upon him: every man also gave him a piece of money, and every one an earring of gold.
 So the LORD blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning: for he had fourteen thousand sheep, and six thousand camels, and a thousand yoke of oxen, and a thousand she asses.

God is infinitely just because He can give us recompense that will more than justify any suffering we have to endure. In fact, if we knew just how good our reward is, we would gladly suffer any hardship or pain.

God will forgive you all things except your denial of Him. Can you forgive God?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

World Famous Jewish Playwright, David Mamet:"Why I am no longer a brain dead liberal..."

We conservatives have a new ally, David Mamet. The Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, screenwriter, movie director (Glengarry Glen Ross, The Untouchables, Hannibal, and others) has had an epiphany. A conservative rabbi recently challenged Mamet and got him to read Milton Friedman, Shelby Steele, and Thomas Sowell. The scales fell from his eyes.

Berthold Brecht - one of his earliest idols - he now describes as “a show dog of communism,” who attacked capitalism even as his royalties made him rich and comfortable.. He discovered that Karl Marx was an alcoholic tramp who never worked; sponging money from Friedrich Engels and his family. So much for "social justice".
Mamet's new book The Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture, chronicles his conversion to free-market economics and awareness of the disaster of multiculturalism.

“The great wickedness of Liberalism,” he says, “was that those who devise the ever-new state Utopias … set out to bankrupt and restrict not themselves, but others.” Mamet first recognized his own hypocrisy, “talking Left and living Right". This led him to a collective indictment of himself and others in his generation, the "baby boomers", whose narcissistic ideology has always been out-of-sync with reality.
“As my generation did not live through the Depression, World War II, and the agony of the immigrants who are our grandparents or great-grandparents; as we were raised in the greatest plenty the world has ever known and in the most just of societies,” he writes, “we have grown lazy and entitled (not unlike Marx, who lived as a parasite upon Engels, and never worked a day in his life).”
He says that 'progressives' have replaced the Judeo-Christian roots of democracy with wishful Utopian thinking, and belief in the godlike powers of man. “We are told we need not produce, but may merely hope, we need not defend, but may hope, we must not consume, but are allowed, somehow, to hope for sustenance, magically, deriving from some unspecified actions of a government..."
Mamet criticizes Obama's 2008 campaign slogans of “hope” and “change” and exposes them for what they were, a triumph of advertising. “Hope is a very different exhortation than … save, work, co-operate, [and] sacrifice.” He compares these vacuous appeals of 'progressive' thinking to that of Mark Rudd, the leader of the radicals who seized an administration building at Columbia University during riots in the 1960s. “We got a good thing going here,” Mr. Rudd cried. “Now we’ve got to find out what it is.”
The federal government in its expanding power is “the zoning board writ large.”, Mamet says. His new hero is Friedrich Hayek, who maintained that man is limited and government should be, too. Good intentions aren't enough. They bring unintended consequences; whether in urban renewal, affirmative action, welfare, or busing. His ire focuses on 'liberal' education, which he claims is merely indoctrination into identity politics, where students are drugged with self-indulgence. He passionately praises patriotism, tradition, family, and the Bible.
'Progressives', Democrats, socialists, and crypto-Marxists everywhere are in shock. They've lost a cornerstone in the temple of 'modern' thought.