THE ABOMINATION THAT MAKES DESOLATE! (August, 2006)
THE RICHARD LAND LETTER TO GEORGE W BUSH - 2001
WOW, WHAT A SCARY TITLE!
Yes, that is what I am calling this Article. "The Abomination That Makes Desolate".
Seems ominous doesn't it? It seems like I am implying that I am going to point at, or make reference to the Antichrist doesn't it? It seems like I am going to go into another long dissertation about how America has become the modern day manifestation of "Babylon", and how I believe that the American Presidency is most likely the "place-holder" if you will for the son of perdition. It seems I may dig into the books of Daniel, Ezekiel, and Revelation and lay out the spiritual "Roadmap" for the end times scenario, as I began to do in the Gog Magog article... I will do all of those things, as I have stated, but not here. In the upcoming article I am working on entitled, "The Time Appointed" I will do some of those things, but again, not here...
What I am going to do here is talk about something talked about in my most recent article, entitled "Warfare Theology and The Coming 4th Reich 2". In that article, I mentioned a letter that was written by Richard Land, of the Southern Baptist Convention's "Ethics and Religious Liberties Commission", (So appropriately entitled given the "Liberties" that Land and his co signers take with the scriptures, and in fact even the entire thrust and spirit of the gospel.), co-signed by the likes of Chuck Colson, Bill Bright, D. James Kennedy, and other men of esteem in the modern Christian public. The letter was sent to George W. Bush in 2001, regarding his foreign policies, and his proposals with regard to how to "deal" with the issues in the middle east, and specifically Iraq at the time. It is a letter we have labeled as a gross twist of the spirit of our faith, and a most critical betrayal of our Lord Jesus Christ, and it is now time to explain that declaration, and to stand, once again, against the designs of the enemy to destroy the latter day believers, and the Church of Jesus Christ at large, both in America, and abroad.
The article you are about to read will present to you a scenario so objectionable to some "Patriotic Christians", that you may find yourself in a deep conflict in your heart and mind about how to accept, or even contemplate the suggestions I will make here. They are perilous for believers that are placing their trust and their loyalty behind a policy so satanic and evil, that it is likely to take millions to a confused and astounded reckoning with truth and reality! It seems virtually impossible for those who have become so dependent on the "system of things" around them, to admit that the policies of this government have become something other than their idealistic beliefs of what their "forefathers" meant by the words of the constitution, and by the "godly kingdom" designation that they have assigned to America here in the 21st century. If one is so dependant on that system, that they won't even disagree with its designs in principle, how then could those same people disagree with it should it someday cost them their lives to do so?
I have seen the desperation of both believers and unbelievers alike in conversations where I have pointed out the truth and the designs of the men in power here, and the truth of what their actions ACTUALLY accomplish in the middle east, and the world at large. I have seen that desperation and I have heard the feeble, and confused banter, as they "tow the party line", and attempt to justify American actions and occupations in the world. Desperately holding on to the belief that America is all that is good in the world, they can not even entertain for a minute that these things represent an evil of literally BIBLICAL proportions! The more time that passes, the more impossible it becomes, as the justifications and excuses they have offered on behalf of men like George Bush will have to be acknowledged as lies, deceptions, or out right excuses. How hard will it be for a person to admit that the excuses they have been presenting for three years have been lies all along. I salute and congratulate all of those faithful Christians who have written to us, and admitted whole sale that they were blinded by their patriotism and their refusal to see the country through honest, objective eyes.
What I am going to do now, is to break down piece by piece, this letter which was written, as I stated in the Warfare 2 article, on Southern Baptist Convention stationary, since it came from the office of Richard land, and I will talk about why this letter was/is such a huge and monumental mistake, and why it represents the "spirit of things" so to speak in the American Church today. I will also discuss why I titled this article as I did. So lets take a look at the first couple of paragraphs of this letter...
THE LAND LETTER
The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of The Southern Baptist Convention
October 3, 2002
The Honorable George W. Bush President of the United States of America,
The White House, Washington, DC 20502
Here, we have the heading of the Letter. I will not touch the fact that he calls George Bush "honorable" here, as its merely a formality on a letter like this, although I could probably spend a great deal of time discussing why it is an inappropriate adjective for Bush. I don't want to pick apart every single word of this letter, I really don't, so I am not going to and really don't have to spend any time working on stuff that would be more conjecture than reality regarding what Richard Land is saying here. I don't even need to waste any time turning the formal heading into an issue, or a big deal, because the real issues are in the actual content of what Richard, and his co-signers are saying to the president.
Dear Mr. President,
In this decisive hour of our nation’s history we are writing to express our deep appreciation for your bold, courageous, and visionary leadership. Americans everywhere have been inspired by your eloquent and clear articulation of our nation’s highest ideals of freedom and of our resolve to defend that freedom both here and across the globe.
The first thing Land does, which is to be expected almost as much as the heading but not quite, is the flattery that the Christian faith has cautioned about since day one. Jesus, the Disciples, nor the Apostle Paul were ok with the flattery, kissing up, and lip service that represented trying to gain advantage with, and trying to honor men. Telling the president how much "we" appreciate his "bold and courageous" leadership, presumably speaking for the entire body of Christ, Land starts this letter off in a telling way. I honestly wonder what Jesus Christ would have to say about someone who considers themselves a leader in his church offering this kind of flattery to a SECULAR leader in the world... Contrary to 21st Century Christian belief, George Bush IS a secular leader, not a spiritual one. As the lines between the worldly and the spiritual get blurred for today's carnal Christian, I feel the need to point that out. It goes to my whole reasoning about the American Church's position concerning George Bush to begin with, and that is the lobbyist tactics with regard to the ultimate piece of pie that Bush offered the church on day one of his presidency, the purchase of the soul of the Church in America, the 4 billion a year in "faith based initiatives". Land is literally falling all over himself with bubbling, puppy dog like admiration of the man, and to hear someone call George Bush an "eloquent and clear articulator??" This shows that there is surely deception at hand!
George Bush's leadership is neither bold and courageous, nor visionary by any stretch of the imagination! This is very clearly shown in actions that he doesn't even deny or try to hide. George Bush and his ilk, corporate America, and the billionaire brood that now run this country are the reason that we are hated all over the world, and he is not even hiding the fact that he threw 130 thousand of our young men and women out there to pay the price for men like him. A proverbial "meat shield" if you will, to keep radical Islam in the east. If you question this action, you are called "anti-troop" by these men... If that isn't the ultimate example of the pot calling the kettle black, I have never seen one!
As shown by this letter from Richard Land, it seems Christians in America are totally ok with that thinking since it saves them the inconvenience of being afraid as well, and is also shown by the average Christian's defense of these actions as "of God". And it shows clearly why every single man and women who names the name of Christ that supports these actions will share FULLY in the responsibility for said actions! It is neither bold nor courageous my friends to throw someone else out under the bus in order to protect yourself. It is like the hideous villain in the movies that grabs the child and puts it between himself and the guns of the authorities. We all know how despicable we think he is. This would only be considered visionary by Bush's cohorts! Hmm, what does that say about the likes of Land, Colson and Kennedy?
We believe that your policies concerning the ongoing international terrorist campaign against America are both right and just. Specifically, we believe that your stated policies concerning Saddam Hussein and his headlong pursuit and development of biochemical and nuclear weapons of mass destruction are prudent and fall well within the time-honored criteria of just war theory as developed by Christian theologians in the late fourth and early fifth centuries A.D.
I know a lot of folks are going to say "well, hind sight is 20/20 here" but we are writing these things as a site that was awoken to be against all of this as early as 2002, and we have been saying so for over three years now, so we won't need to hear that. This story he is catering to here was an abject falsehood. Iraq was not the terrorist nation that was responsible or even involved in the attacks against our land and most of America is now well aware of that. Christian, it aught to drive us to our knees if we are now saying "oh well", and still even in the face of the currently known realities remain unconcerned and excusing these actions, based on lies. We knew from the beginning that the accusation upon which the government totally presented the need to go into Iraq was an out and out falsehood. We also knew that Iraq was quite suddenly being billed as the center of the terrorist world, a fact that most of the educated world knew was a lie. Some folks are saying to themselves when they read that:
"wait a minute, what about the brutal nature of his dictatorship, and the things he did to his own people, and the attacks on his neighbors..."
Sorry folks, but those are the "supplemental" excuses that were thrown out after the yellowcake uranium accusation house of cards fell down. After the entire concept of Iraq having WMDs turned out to be a lie. We didn't hear those things until after the CIA guy Wilson returned from Africa with the truth, and then had his wife's life put in danger for it. We didn't hear that rhetoric until the "liberal" media started to ask why we were in Iraq because of a lie. Also, when will Christians realize that he did MOST of those things during times where America was in total support of his leadership, and knew full well that he was doing these things??
We were in Afghanistan to capture Bin Laden and bring him to justice on behalf of the three thousand families that lost loved ones on 9-11, THAT was the extent of the "war on terror". Afghanistan, and the Taliban were the sponsors and commissioners of the attacks against America. But the bit of an unarmed Iraq, and the unguarded second or third largest oil reserve on the planet under it proved to be too much for big oil cowards like Bush to resist and so we left about 10 thousand soldiers in Afghanistan to do the paramount task of the "War on Terror", and after like 30 tanks took over the entire capitol of Iraq, he sent 130 thousand additional soldiers into Iraq to secure the oil, and enrich the board of Halliburton... PERIOD. Capturing Bin Laden would be the single most powerful ending to the so called "War on Terror", and you can bet he will not be captured until these leaders have carried out their designs. Here is what we knew then, and what we still know now...
Iraq was pretty much defenseless after the 1991 invasion called Desert Storm, where America expelled Iraqi troops from Kuwait, and where most of Iraq's military, also most of its weapons were destroyed by the American Military.
Sadaam Hussein could not admit that they had no weapons left publicly, or he would have been putting his people in danger of invasion by Iran, Great Britain or America. He had no choice but to stonewall on the weapons issue, and America knew that right from the beginning. That is why the weapons inspector thing turned out to be so valuable for them. They were able to continually make it seem like Hussein was unwilling to cooperate, while finding out that they had no defense at all. Oh yeah, that's pretty bold and courageous.
In 2003, other than a few scud missiles which have a range of about 90 miles, they had no defense capability beyond ground offensive with guns and bullets. Iraq was never and never would have become a threat to the American homeland as it was "billed" to be. The politics of fear win out over reality every time.
Sadaam Hussein was not a cohort, or even an associate of the kind of Muslim that Osama Bin Laden was, and there wasn't even any reason to believe that they were even friends up to that point, since Al Qaeda condemned Iraq and others for dealing with the US. (don't forget that Iraq was a tolerated ally of America for decades before the 90s, and we even supported Iraq in the war with Iran.)
So what's the point of all that? Well go back to the paragraph I am working right now...
Specifically, we believe that your stated policies concerning Saddam Hussein and his headlong pursuit and development of biochemical and nuclear weapons of mass destruction are prudent and fall well within the time-honored criteria of just war theory as developed by Christian theologians in the late fourth and early fifth centuries A.D.
This is one of the reasons I am treating this letter this way, and devoting an entire article to it. The assumptions and suppositions on which men like Land, Colson, Kennedy and in fact the entire Christian Church in America base their support for George Bush are LIES. For the so called leaders in American Christianity to write a letter like this to Bush at a time when they had no idea what so ever what they were saying is the obvious consequence of this support, and the reason we have been doing this for three years now! Sadaam Hussein had NO headlong pursuit of biochemical or nuclear weapons of mass destruction. He was far too preoccupied with the survival of his own administration. The extent of what he could do was congratulate the men who committed the attacks of 9-11. This section becomes really troublesome for the Church, and for these men now 5 years after the letter was written, and the truths are coming to light day in and day out, in SPITE of Christian denial. What is even more astounding is that these protestant Christian "dignitaries" resort to the catholic Church fathers to validate their support for this president?? Here in this section, Land goes on to credit the "Church Fathers" from the 4th and early 5th century for establishing the "time honored" "just war theory", and goes on to explain to Bush what "just war theory" is. I assume he was offering Bush the "Christian" justification for his actions? The "Christian Theologians" he mentions from that period ironically happen to include the same Catholics that the entire protestant Church rejects, and says exercised undue rule and authoritarian domination over the Church when they give the justification for the protestant reformation. They call them deceived and self serving worshipers of rule and self glorification and pompous, abominable deniers of Christ when it comes to placing themselves under the authority of the catholic church. They place most of the doctrine of the catholic church in the waste basket as deception and antichrist spirit, and rightfully so, but now here in this letter, as convenience presents itself, they call them the "Christian theologians of the 4th and 5th century"??
These were men fresh from the Constantinian era of inviting pagan rite and ritual into the Church of Christ, and reinstalling the same human hierarchal structure that Jesus condemned the Pharisees for, and ordered his followers not to allow back into his fold. This is also the period when war was invited back into Church teaching as "just". What's more, every protestant Christian reading this article knows that is true, and should be very concerned that so called "leaders" of the protestant Christian faith like Land, Colson, and Kennedy, can site "Constantinian" era church fathers as authorities on doctrine regarding war, in order to strengthen their support for the current President! This is the exact same thinking that resulted in the very same mistakes of history known as the inquisitions, the Crusades, etc. That war and killing is an ok method of bringing about "God's will" and a "better end result" is just the opposite of what Jesus taught.
Soon the same mistakes of the past will come back to haunt us again, probably in the form of a modern "crusade", like... oh I don't know, maybe some disturbed leader will come along calling himself a Christian, and he will decide that it is God's will for him to rid the world of radical Islam for instance. Maybe he will eventually cause the deaths of millions of Muslims. Wouldn't that be a nightmare?? Here is the section on the "just war" items, I will look at each section as we go:
First, your stated policy concerning using military force if necessary to disarm Saddam Hussein and his weapons of mass destruction is a just cause. In just war theory only defensive war is defensible; and if military force is used against Saddam Hussein it will be because he has attacked his neighbors, used weapons of mass destruction against his own people, and harbored terrorists from the Al Qaeda terrorist network that attacked our nation so viciously and violently on September 11, 2001. As you stated in your address to the U.N. September 12th:
Mistake number one here is enormous. It has been proven beyond a shadow of doubt that Sadaam Hussein's Iraq had nothing in terms of weapons of mass destruction, so what exactly was Land talking about here? There WAS NO "JUST CAUSE". He was relying totally and completely on whatever the political establishment told him. Since when is that a good idea for a Christian? Land and men like him, (except maybe Colson) aught to know full well that politicians are dishonest to the core in most cases, and serve the interests of their financial backers, so what is the so called leadership of the Christian Church laying their credibility on the table for men like George W Bush and Dick Cheney? Here he says "In just war theory only defensive war is defensible" Look at the incredible reality of these statements"
In just war theory only defensive war is defensible; and if military force is used against Saddam Hussein it will be because...
he has attacked his neighbors,
used weapons of mass destruction against his own people
harbored terrorists from the Al Qaeda terrorist network that attacked our nation so viciously and violently on September 11, 2001. As you stated in your address to the U.N. September 12th:
Again, I don't think Land could have known the enormity of the mistakes he was making here while he was bubbling with enthusiasm for the first president to truly proclaim himself as a member of the evangelical Christian Church in this country. Lets look at what he said here: "he has attacked his neighbors"... He attacked his neighbors back in 91, and he was quickly sent back to Iraq in Desert Storm. What did that stuff have to do with 2001 when Land sent this letter? I wonder if Land ever considered that most of the attacking that Iraq had done on it's neighbors since Sadaam Hussein came to power was with the SUPPORT of the US? (except Kuwait). "used weapons of mass destruction against his own people" This also happened at a time when the US government was in FULL support of Hussein's government. I don't think Land or his co signers were very well studied on history...
"he harbored terrorists from the Al Qaeda terrorist network that attacked our nation so viciously and violently on September 11, 2001".
This one really makes one sick to the stomach because it shows Land's attitude of hatred and revenge. The very attitude which inspires this letter, and most of the Church's support for Bush in this whole "War on Terror" thing to begin with. None of us in America are big Hussein fans anyway, but to construe the fact that there were members of Al Qaeda in Iraq to mean that Hussein was "harboring them" is just an incredibly ignorant statement. That being the case would put every middle eastern country including our allies like the house of Medina (Saudi Arabia) in a real big problem. It really shows that Land and his friends had bought hook, line, and sinker the WHOLE story fed to them by the political establishment. It is sad and shocking how cozy and vulnerable Christians have made themselves to this administration. Their credibility all over the world is lost. Again, there is NO WAY Jesus would have been on board with this so called "just war" crap. He didn't accept it from the zealots, and he wouldn't accept it from Land and his friends. Moving on...
“We can harbor no illusions... Saddam Hussein attacked Iran in 1980 and Kuwait in 1990. He’s fired ballistic missiles at Iran and Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Israel. His regime once ordered the killing of every person between the ages of 15 and 70 in certain Kurdish villages in Northern Iraq. He has gassed many Iranians and forty Iraqi villages.”
More of the same... Land and his cosigners show that they are so painfully unaware, or in denial of history, and he is so busy falling all over himself for this president, that he doesn't even realize that the attack on Iran was executed with American funds, American assistance, and American support, and most of those other items occurred at times when the US supported his presidency. What they clearly do not understand is that things are only wrong in this world when the American State dept says they are, and they are falling right into the fascist thinking... "it's not evil when WE do it, or approve of it".
Disarming and neutralizing Saddam Hussein is to defend freedom and freedom-loving people from state-sponsored terror and death.
Oh please. What the heck was Land thinking?? That sounds like a republican campaign slogan! I'm sorry but this stuff was a tremendous mistake, and any remaining Christians supporting this stuff need to see that!
Second, just war must have just intent. Our nation does not intend to destroy, conquer, or exploit Iraq. As you declared forthrightly in your speech to the U.N. General Assembly:
“The United States has no quarrel with the Iraqi people. . . . Liberty for the Iraqi people is a great moral cause, and a great strategic goal. The people of Iraq deserve it; the security of all nations requires it. Free societies do not intimidate through cruelty and conquest, and open societies do not threaten the world with mass murder. The United States supports political and economic liberty in a unified Iraq.”
This is clearly a just and noble intent.
Mistake number 2 here could be the biggest mistake of the letter but we'll see...
The politicians that run this country had EVERY intention of exploiting and conquering Iraq. Land's calling this "just intent" is even further manifestation of the hideous level of deception that is at hand here. Since when is it the call of the church of Jesus Christ to concern itself with "strategic goals"? There is NO call to do that in this faith. Again, Land displays how far out of the straight and narrow path that he and men like him have wandered. "As you declared so forthrightly"? But that isn't even the most ridiculous statement made in this "second" heading...
Free societies do not intimidate through cruelty and conquest, and open societies do not threaten the world with mass murder.
I am sorry but this is the epitome of hypocrisy and falsehood, and I honestly don't think Land had any clue of the amazing debacle he was delivering on behalf of the Church of Jesus Christ in the form of this letter. All America has done since the 40s is "intimidate through cruelty and conquest". All they have done is "threaten the world with mass murder".
If anyone thinks that the looming atomic weapons that we unleashed on the country of Japan, and even more importantly, our willingness to USE them on civilian populations does not threaten the world with mass murder they are sadly mistaken. This letter bows to so many forms of political deception that it made me sad and feeling ill when I read it for the first time. To think that my Brothers and Sisters in Christ BELIEVE this stuff... The United States supports political and economic CONQUEST in Iraq, and no amount of "trusting and believing" in our leaders is going to change that fact.
Third, just war may only be commenced as a last resort. As you so clearly enumerated before the U.N., Saddam Hussein has for more than a decade ignored Security Council resolutions or defied them while breaking virtually every agreement into which he has entered. He stands convicted by his own record as a brutal dictator who cannot be trusted to abide by any agreement he makes. And while he prevaricates and obfuscates, he continues to obtain and develop the weapons of mass destruction which he will use to terrorize the world community of nations.
The world has been waiting for more than a decade for the Iraqi regime to fulfill its agreement to destroy all of its weapons of mass destruction, to cease producing them or the long-range missiles to deliver them in the future, and to allow thorough and rigorous inspections to verify their compliance. They have not, and will not do so and any further delay in forcing the regime’s compliance would be reckless irresponsibility in the face of grave and growing danger.
Again, bubbling with enthusiasm for his hero, Richard Land forgets to sit down and think carefully about what he is saying, purportedly on behalf of the entire Christian Church. This sounds like a description of America's record over the last 5 years. We throw treaties aside without thinking twice, we tell other countries what they can and can not research, and we even go to the degree of funding operations to have world leaders overthrown, assassinated, or lured into compromising situations thus destroying their political careers. We have done these things in Africa, Europe, Asia, and even in the countries of our allies.
Prevarication and obfuscation are pillars of American strength as it exists in the world today, and I can't believe men of this level of education can not see that. The startling level of ignorance that this letter displays is one of the things that makes me wonder... Is it ignorance, or something else... "he continues to obtain and develop WMDs, which he will use to terrorize the world community of nations" This is an utter untruth. What would Land say about that today?
Fourth, just war requires authorization by legitimate authority. We believe it was wise and prudent for you to go before the U.N. General Assembly and ask the U.N. Security Council to enforce its own resolutions. However, as American citizens we believe that, however helpful a U.N. Security Council vote might be, the legitimate authority to authorize the use of U.S. military force is the government of the United States and that the authorizing vehicle is a declaration of war or a joint resolution of the Congress.
When the threat of Soviet nuclear missiles in Cuba presented a grave threat to America’s security, President Kennedy asked for the support of the U.N. and the Organization of American States, but made it clear, with or without their support, those missiles would either be removed by the Soviets, or we would neutralize them ourselves. The American people expected no less from their president and their government.
This fourth mistake is pretty serious too. I honestly can't believe he even went here. Legitimate authority?? America dissed the international community in a way never before seen on this whole "War on Terror" thing, and Land thinks that American government procedure applies to, and is how the REST of the world is run??
The American government IS the right authority to authorize the use of its own military forces to do something, and the authorizing vehicle IS a declaration of war by Congress. That is a process that takes place here, BUT when it comes to the authority to use that force in a foreign land, America agreed as did a number of other countries to submit to a body of nations who would decide when war is "just". As I stated a few minutes ago, here is another area where America tossed aside an agreement that they have made, and "can not be trusted to live up to any agreement that it makes". The truth that men like Land refuse to admit is that America had NO legal grounds, and no TRUE cause to go into Iraq, and the rest of the world knows it, and knew it. But the second paragraph of this "fourth" item enforces again the reason why I wrote this article...
When the threat of Soviet nuclear missiles in Cuba presented a grave threat to America’s security, President Kennedy asked for the support of the U.N. and the Organization of American States, but made it clear, with or without their support, those missiles would either be removed by the Soviets, or we would neutralize them ourselves. The American people expected no less from their president and their government.
President Kennedy had aerial photographs of missile batteries right out in the open in Cuba, and pointing at the United States of America. And after the confrontation at the UN, He had an admission from the Soviets that the missiles existed, and no denial from Fidel Castro that they existed as well. He had solid, undeniable proof that what he was saying was the truth. He had no desire to wipe out Cuba, even though it would have been a good "strategic goal". He had no desire to wipe out the Soviet Union, even though ALL Americans believed that Russia was an evil government. He wanted the missiles to be removed and that is what he got. He didn't have some guy in Puerto Rico, who said he thinks there were missiles in Cuba.
George Bush had nothing but speculation and hear-say upon which to base the decision to occupy a country and eventually kill a quarter of a million civilians. But that doesn't matter to men like Bush. They needed to go in there and secure the oil reserves, and put the Iraqi economy back on petrodollars after Hussein moved it to petroeuros, and it didn't matter what the "reasons" were, they were going in. He knew as well as anyone that the Iraqi government could not openly admit that they had no weapons to speak of because an invasion from Iran, Great Britain, or the United States would have been almost guaranteed. He also knew that Iraq was no such threat to the United States homeland. As we have repeatedly stated, one of the largest oil reserves on the planet was sitting under a country that had just about no defenses at all, and that was an opportunity that the financial backers and family members of this president could not let pass, and they were going in there NO MATTER WHAT! I admit that we now say this 5 years later, and some say Richard Land could not see this back when he wrote this letter, but that is exactly the point! There is simply NO WAY that Land could substantiate even one claim that he supports and hails as truth in this letter, and the letter is such a monumental mistake, it needs to be addressed.
Fifth, just war requires limited goals and the resort to armed force must have a reasonable expectation of success. In other words, “total war” is unacceptable and the war’s goals must be achievable. We believe your stated policies for disarming the murderous Iraqi dictator and destroying his weapons of mass destruction, while liberating the Iraqi people for his cruel and barbarous grip, more than meet those criteria.
Did he just say that a "just war" (a war that has no choice but to happen because it HAS to be done), could only be undertaken if you KNOW you will win? There's some more of that twisted reasoning. You don't jump into the water to save a 4 year old child only if you know there is no chance you will drown... unless you are a coward. The wording here is plainly irresponsible, and even the very reasoning for most of the stuff he says is completely diluted on all of these matters.
Sixth, just war theory requires non-combatant immunity. We are confident that our government, unlike Hussein, will not target civilians and will do all that it can to minimize noncombatant casualties.
What can I say about number 6? That there have been over 250 thousand civilians killed in Iraq since the invasion in 2003? That a campaign of "Shock and Awe" is not a campaign that is based on being careful about civilian casualties? What I can say, is that what Land and his co-signers were "confident" of was as misguided as the confidence they afford Bush for the rest of this letter, and in fact for his entire political career as President, and every move that has been made since George Bush used the name of Jesus in a political debate in order to garner the support of the evangelical Christian population in America. A voting block mind you, that had become so large and formidable that the election could not be won without their support. This letter is the manifestation that the Church in America has been pulled into the ultimate arena of lies, deceit, greed, power and worldly influence, and this is the situation that the Disciples and our Lord warned us to be on guard against. We do NOT belong in the political arena, and this letter is the best manifestation of that fact in history since Christ departed..
Seventh, just war theory requires the question of proportionality be addressed. Will the human cost of the armed conflict to both sides be proportionate to the stated objectives and goals? Does the good gained by resort to armed conflict justify the cost of lives lost and bodies maimed? We believe that the cost of not dealing with this threat now will only succeed in greatly increasing the cost in human lives and suffering when an even more heavily armed and dangerous Saddam Hussein must be confronted at some date in the not too distant future. We believe that every day of delay significantly increases the risk of far greater human suffering in the future than acting now would entail.
This seventh statement is probably the most ghastly and horrifying statement I have ever heard from a representative of one of the largest bodies of the Christian Church in the world. He is saying here, based on completely WRONG and false information, based on entirely contrary principles to our faith, and contrary to the teachings of Jesus Christ, and most definitely for no reason other than to tell George Bush that the Christian Church, and thus GOD himself is behind his actions. He tells the president here, that what he is doing is certainly worth the eventual 10,000 American troop deaths and the eventual 150,000 wounded and maimed soldiers, as well as the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan, and every other country that we will invade under the blanket of the "War On Terror".
He tells him this without even knowing what the leaders of this country were actually doing, and while being totally blind to the realities surrounding these things. What he really did here was he told George Bush that the Church supports his actions, and that God is ok with the fact that he was about to put 25 million into the coffers of Dick Cheney's friends at Halliburton. That Jesus Christ supports the fact that his actions would clear the way for his Father's friends at Exxon Mobil to reap two of the most profitable quarters in business history at 10 + Billion a quarter each. That the Holy Spirit is surely inspiring that his own families "treasures" would be enhanced since the defense contractors, (like the Carlisle group), Oil companies, and service companies that support the military that his family is so heavily invested in would profit like never in the history of business. With this small letter, Richard Land and his co-signers "sold the soul" of the American Christian Church to the political establishment in a way that is both surreal and astounding. The short sightedness and utter delusion that accompanies this statement is so astounding that it never ceases to amaze me when Christians all around me display the same willingness to put all of their proverbial "spiritual cookies" in the George Bush basket, while he spends their credibility and disgraces the Christian faith all over the world to the point that the Gospel as we know it WILL be silenced by the time that he is finished.
How different and how much safer would the history of the twentieth century have been had the allies confronted Hitler when he illegally reoccupied the Rhineland in 1936 in clear violation of Germany’s treaty agreements? It is at least possible that tens of millions of the lives lost in World War II might not have been lost if the Allies had enforced treaty compliance then instead of appeasing a murderous dictator.
Again I would have to say, could they be any more short sighted and diluted by determining to totally support this President no matter what? Comparing these events to those events and the events surrounding the Cuban missile crisis is so delusional that it is hard too figure out how to categorize it. The facts that were clearly on the table in those historical events were irrefutable. There has not been one solid piece of information that was ever presented for the case to invade Iraq. All 4 of the different stories and reasons that we were told we needed to go into Iraq were based on false, twisted, exaggerated facts, and out and out fabrications. It is both sad and extremely dangerous that the Church laid down its integrity here, and "blessed" these actions wholesale, and I PRAY that God will reveal to those who see this document the seriousness of these actions. Here are the last few statements that the letter contained...
We are extremely grateful that we have a president who has learned the costly lessons of the twentieth century and who is determined to lead America and the world to a far different and better future in the twenty first century. As you told the world’s leaders at the U.N.:
At least they are aware that it is the intention of the current leadership to dominate and govern the globe. What is truly unbelievable is that Christians today actually seem to think that is a good thing, and that it is somehow true that America deserves that place, or will "use it responsibly". How about Richard Land and his friends support the idea of the huge multinational corporations that hail from this country stop destroying foreign lands, and pilfering the natural resources of the peoples of the world for financial gain, and actually PAY those countries a fair price for what they take, and we can rid ourselves of the reasons they attack us?
“We must choose between a world of fear and a world of progress. We cannot stand by and do nothing while dangers gather. We must stand up for our security, and for the permanent rights and hopes of mankind. By heritage and by choice, the United States of America will make that stand.”
This one gets under my skin because the Bush administration has pushed 90% of its agenda by capitalizing on the fear that 9/11 inspired in Americans. Richard! WE ARE living in a world of fear, created by YOUR President's people! "By heritage and by choice America takes that stand" As I stated, Christians in America today have swallowed the delusion that it is ok for America to dictate to the world, and they will obviously support whatever good old "Uncle Sam" is doing.
Mr. President, we make that stand with you. In so doing, while we cannot speak for all of our constituents, we are supremely confident that we are voicing the convictions and concerns of the great preponderance of those we are privileged to serve.
Well, well, well.. finally. At last a leader of religious America has made the admission we have been speaking of for three years now! By calling the members of the Southern Baptist affiliated churches "constituents" he has mistakenly manifested the true nature of today's Christian leadership, and the "ownership" role they place themselves in over Christianity and its people. It makes clear that these politician admiring Church leaders are SO conforming to the image of the world, that as we have said repeatedly, there is SERIOUS trouble afoot. As manifested by the euphemistic expression "that we are privileged to serve", he manifests that men like Colson and himself are hopelessly political, and will always be. That they consider their leadership roles as political and worldly in nature as any politician in the game is just plain... and sad. He says basically here, "we can't speak for all of Christianity, but we do anyway". I hope it is not a manifestation that all today's Christian Church in the world has become is a "religion based" government, intact with "world leaders" and all. It isn't .... is it?
Please know that we join tens of millions of our fellow Americans in praying for you and your family daily.
Sadly, this is the ONLY statement in the entire letter that we can agree with whole heartedly. It is VERY important that we pray for our leaders. Even when they are spiraling our country into a position where the entire world feels that it has no choice but to stop the expansion, and a war of such incredible proportion breaks out, as it is about to now in our world, that all men everywhere will be in danger. Remember, there is NO PLACE in the world that Satan dedicates more resources and more time and effort to than his work on the political leaders of the world. Don't forget he has principalities over many countries in rebellion, and these "princes" as the bible calls them are working constantly in the leadership circles of the world. So we also encourage folks: Pray for the leaders of the world expediently!
Richard D. Land, D.Phil. President Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission Southern Baptist Convention
Dr. Chuck Colson Chairman Prison Fellowship Ministries
Dr. Bill Bright Founder and Chairman Campus Crusade for Christ International
D. James Kennedy, Ph.D. President Coral Ridge Ministries Media, Inc.
Dr. Carl D. Herbster President American Association of Christian Schools
The Southern Baptist Convention is America’s largest non-Catholic denomination with more than 16 million members in 42,334 churches nationwide. The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission is the SBC’s ethics, religious liberty, and public policy agency with offices in Nashville, Tennessee, and Washington, D.C.
- END -
ABOMINATION THAT MAKES DESOLATE?
In the beginning of this document, I mentioned an "Abomination". I talked about the Abomination that makes desolate. I know most Christians are familiar with that phrase, and I know that those veteran readers of this site will be aware of the fact that I have explained this before. However, I don't know why Christians seem to have such a hard time to understand what that truly means. Let's take a look at the scriptures that mention the abomination of desolation situation and what they say...
Jesus Mentioned it when warning about the end times...
Matthew 24:15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
Mark 13:14 But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, (let him that readeth understand,) then let them that be in Judea flee to the mountains:
Daniel the Prophet, that Jesus mentioned said the following...
Daniel 11:31 And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that makes desolate.
Daniel 12:11 And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that makes desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days.
The interpretation that is widely accepted here, and the one that I subscribe to is that the temple of God, which was established since Jesus brought the new Covenant is our Heart. That is why I believe BOTH writers of the Gospels that this verse is in, (Mathew and Mark), added a parenthesis to be sure and say "let the reader understand". This meant that they wanted us to THINK about what was being said, and not just go with a preconceived notion.
What Daniel is talking about is that the evil one will take a place in the "temple of God", and that this was the "abomination that makes desolate", or the "Abomination of Desolation". The way that Daniel was wording it, it seemed as though a certain individual would one day sit on a throne in an ACTUAL temple and proclaim himself to be God. In old testament days the temple was a building made of wood and stone. When Jesus taught us that the temple of God is no longer a building made of wood and stone, but rather that it was the body and heart of man, as he was establishing the new covenant, I believe he also made it clear that everything taught in the New Testament relative to the "temple of God" is definitely speaking of in the heart of a man. There are those who even use this principle to teach that we are to take good care of our bodies, since it is the "temple of God". The Apostle Paul also spoke this way, and obviously understood this New Testament reality...
Acts 17:24-25 God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwells not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though he needed anything, seeing he gives to all life, and breath, and all things
1 Corinthians 3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?
1 Corinthians 3:17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
1 Corinthians 6:17-20 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit. Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that commits fornication sins against his own body. What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.
Paul taught that what goes on in your spirit and your body goes on in the temple of God. This is a New Testament reality, and we must acknowledge this reality to understand what I am saying here. Even though the New Testament realities didn't exist in Daniel's day, since the items that he was discussing happen in New Testament times, we have to interpret the predictions in terms of this time and this reality. Today the temple of God is us. Mind, body, and spirit, WE are the temple of God.
So if we look at the scriptures prediction about the Abomination of Desolation we have to admit and realize that what that means in New Testament terms, is that the one we know of and expect as the "son of perdition", who we expect to sit in the "temple of God" showing himself that he is God... We know this reality is coming, and we all have been watching for it all of our Christian lives... What is it really? What IS the Abomination of Desolation, and what EXACTLY takes place...
2 Thessalonians 2:1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, 2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. 3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; 4 Who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sits in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.
What the Christian church believes is that the "son of perdition" will take a place in a temple and make claims that only GOD should make. We have always envisioned a man of high power in the world sitting in some actual building somewhere dictating to the world, and making claims that were so outrageous that all Christians everywhere would instantly know that THIS was the "antichrist", the so called "son of perdition".
That would mean that a person will come along at some point that will be esteemed by men as "the truth". Whatever he says will be considered as absolute truth. He will be considered a great spiritual leader, a prince of peace. These are all of the things we have known all along, but when looked at in a New Testament light they mean something a little different than we have always supposed.
What they mean is that at some point in time, a world leader will TAKE A PLACE in MEN'S HEARTS that only God should have. What is the place that God should have? God should have a place that we honor him above all others, that we regard his word as the first and foremost truth. That all other reality has to bend to HIS will and all truth has to bend to HIS truth. In other words, he will be more important to us than anything else. His words will take precedence over everything else. We will serve him, and love him, and preach him. That I believe is what it means when it says that there "will be a falling away first". Christians will "fall away from" the truth of the word, and they will follow this one's words as truth. Then it says that the "son of perdition" will be revealed, so it seems to me that after so many have fallen away from the truth of the word, (as we describe in this article about the Land letter), that it will be revealed WHO in fact IS the son of perdition. I believe that we are literally days, weeks, or certainly months from that revelation. So what does that mean that the son of perdition will receive from people at the time of the end?
What he says, regardless of the evidence to the contrary will be accepted as absolute truth. All other truth will have to be bent and shaped to fit the words that he says. (including God's word), Our "reality" will have to be looked at in a way that makes his words become our truth. They will abandon everything they have known to be truth and reality, in order to serve and to honor this person. In fact, the scripture teaches that MOST of the end times church will follow this one, and accept him as truth. His words will be honored above all other's words, and his suggestions will be accepted as words to live by, by all of those who worship him. Worship him? What does it mean to worship him? Worship is defined as to revere, honor, respect, love. To hold one above all others. It is obedience and being held in that ultimate place in ones heart we call "the throne". Getting down on ones knees and bowing to someone is not what the scripture means when it says to "worship". Although that happens sometimes as an expression of that worship, it is not the worship itself.
So this "one" will come along, and huge masses of people will place him on the throne in their hearts brothers and sisters... IN THEIR HEARTS. They will regard what he says as absolute truth, even if the evidence says otherwise. They will make excuses and compromises to make what he says, and what he is doing right. They will honor all that he says and does, even if that means taking HIS word above the words of the BIBLE. They will put him in first place above everything. Can we say that a lot of Christians have placed this president in that position? They will even turn a blind eye when they see things that are seriously wrong, and even then will make justifications for his actions. They will find themselves sharing their beliefs about HIM and even "recruiting" others to believe and follow as they do. Can you imagine Christians leaving their Church careers to enter into political ones? Can you imagine Christians no longer preaching the Gospel and instead preaching a political party line? Can you imagine Christians going door to door and cold calling others talking about a political leader rather than Jesus Christ? I can definitely imagine it because it is happening today!
They will esteem him as the absolute representative of Jesus here in the world, (even more so than the Pope). What we have always expected and envisioned was some guy coming along and deceiving millions with lies, taking over the world militarily, and demanding that they obey him, sitting in an ACTUAL temple somewhere, probably in Jerusalem or Israel. Although I do believe there may be an eventual rebuilding of the temple in Jerusalem, I don't believe the abomination of desolation will be exactly like most folks expect it. What I have laid out here, is exactly the kind of picture that I envision as taking place at that time, which is why we are so concerned about the things we see happening in the world, and to me, why this letter by Richard Land is so unsettling. What do I mean by that? In what ways could this Letter and the attitude it represents from the Christian Church in America, relate to the whole picture of the Abomination of Desolation spoken of by Daniel, Jesus, Paul, and the Disciples?
SO WHERE IS THE ABOMINATION THAT MAKES DESOLATE HERE?
In this letter, Land makes no mistake about laying out the "justification" of the actions of the George Bush Whitehouse, yet we know now that most of those actions were based on lies, and falsehoods. Most American Christians follow that same path with regard to George Bush, and in spite of the fact that Jesus and his Disciples taught the opposite, they cling to the philosophies of the current leadership in America. Regardless of the fact that the actions in Iraq were based on greed, enriching the oil companies, Halliburton, and all Military/Defense service contractors that his family is so heavily invested in, the Christian Church in America today continues to spew justifications for these actions, and continues to proclaim them as of God.
They have even CHANGED THEIR IMAGE of the Son of God, who they used to preach as a God of love and reconciliation, which he is, and a meek and lowly Lord who preached the purest form of what they now call "passivism", into a warmongering Lord who would order his followers to kill others for financial gain in his name. They have made him a God who would have us massacre hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians as retribution for the very hatred that Jesus said we would suffer in the world as his children, (the attacks of 9-11). They have taken principles developed by men they formerly knew were deceived and lost, (the Catholic fathers of the 4th and 5th centuries), and used them as justifications for their precious leader's actions in the world today, while turning a blind eye to the truth of those actions, and more importantly even now after the lies and deceit have been exposed and made known, even though hundreds of truths have come to light to show the reality "on the ground" as it were, they STILL make excuses and offer justifications for these actions.
Brothers and sisters, Christians who support this stuff in the name of God, and who say that Jesus would be the commissioner of these acts of murder, evil, and service to mammon are committing an "abomination" so terrible that I believe the scripture teaches that it will leave their spirit "desolate" (empty, destroyed, and abandoned) in the very near future. Think about it, they constantly make excuses for these things, they constantly justify these things, they will call you up on the phone and preach the gospel of the party to you, and tell you that it is your "Christian duty" to support these things. They preach the gospel of their leader, and no matter how hideous and evil the deeds are, they use as an excuse that the "other side" is more evil. As if that kind of thinking ever got any credence with Jesus.
Is this in fact the Abomination of Desolation? It could be, but even if it isn't we are standing on the precipice of the final hours when a political leader will stand up, and they will give him their all. American Christianity is so ready for this event, and are even walking in the footsteps of that event right now, that they will seamlessly walk right into it. Again, IS George Bush the son of perdition? I certainly do not know that for sure, and certainly can not say that yet, but I tell you now, he is receiving the kind of loyalty and undying support from the Christian world in America today, as defined pretty nicely by this Letter from Richard Land, where they are even ignoring the words of JESUS to continue their support of him! If he is not the "son of perdition", he has totally been used to prepare the world stage for that one!
Christians are saying that the Lord who told us to leave the vengeance to him because he is the only one who can make war in righteousness, and to take the persecution, beatings and even the loss of our lives for his name's sake as an honor, now wants us to kill everyone who would come against us BEFORE they MIGHT move against us. They actually HAVE put their leaders in the place of their Lord by proclaiming that THEY too can wage war in righteousness, by proclaiming that this war is just! By saying that the actions of these men are above needing to obey the words of Christ, they have placed these men in the position of their Lord. The scripture says that only HE (God) can wage war in righteousness yet the Christian church says that George Bush and the republican party can? All of the diabolical pieces are in place. You don't believe me? Let's take a look at how many of Jesus and the Disciple's teachings they have abandoned for the current leadership...