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Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

This blog will be written from an orthodox Christian point of view. There may be some topic that is out of bounds, but at present I don't know what it will be. Politics is a part of life. Theology and philosophy are disciplines that we all participate in even if we don't think so. The Bible has a lot to say about economics. How about self defense? Is war ethical? Think of all the things that someone tells you we should not touch and let's give it a try. Everything that is a part of life should be an expression of worship.

Keep it courteous and be kind to those less blessed than you, but by all means don't worry about agreeing. We learn more when we get backed into a corner.

Monday, January 20, 2020

Opus 2020-018: The Prophet’s Hat: Thermostats

The day will come when the progressives begin to require Save the Whales Thermostats.  The name is nonsense but so are most things that come from the progressives.

These Thermostats will only have two settings on them:  Heat and Cool.  The temperature will be preset at the factory.  If you want it to heat the temp will be 68º.  If you want A/C it will only cool to 74º.  These will be smart thermostats so that the governing VAC Czar can radio changes if he is having a bad day at the office.

This does not require much of a gift of prophecy.  People with smart meters and cutting edge thermostats already have the tools in place.  All it needs is someone who is bored and has access to the central controls. 

If you have been following the moves by Democrats in Virginia to disarm the population you have read about threats to turn off people’s utilities to force compliance.  I don’t know if that is from a satire site or real reporting but it can be done overnight, with no danger to the utility employees, to anyone with a smart meter.

When I look at Republicans like Mitt Romney I don’t know if they are the answer but I know that Democrats are the problem.

homo unius libri

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Opus 2019-017: Progressive Barbarians vs Us Common Folk

Modern technology and free enterprise economics have changed the way we look at wealth.  It is no longer a zero sum game although a lot of progressives act like it. 

Before the industrial age wealth was concentrated in the hands of a few.  The masses lived hand to mouth and day to day.  All but a few were farmers and a bad storm could wipe out a years work.  Land belonged to the nobility and the church.  The only way to accumulate wealth was to deprive someone else through coercion, theft, or looting in war.  We get a picture of this in Joshua 22:8
(Jos 22:8 KJV) And he spake unto them, saying, Return with much riches unto your tents, and with very much cattle, with silver, and with gold, and with brass, and with iron, and with very much raiment: divide the spoil of your enemies with your brethren.
This was to soldiers coming back from attacking and looting a city.

Riches was not defined by what they have created but by what they have taken from others.  The only way to get wealth seems to have been looting and pillaging. 

Then came the industrial revolution.  Now, with machines and sources of power, one person could make large numbers of items.  Production soared along with productivity.  Adam Smith in Wealth of Nations gives and example in making pins.  He said that it would be considered a major accomplishment for a lone worker without all the machines to make one pin in a day.  With machines and the division of labor a crew of 10 could make 48,000 in a day.  Imagine how that reduced the cost of such a simple thing as a pin and improved the life of everyone. (page 2)

Wealth today is not just a case of moving gold coins around from bank to bank.  New wealth and value can be generated by reducing the cost of making the same item and because of the reduced cost, selling many more to the public.  Of course this assumes that the public has jobs that pay enough to buy the items.  There is no end to the level of prosperity the world can know.

Another reason that prosperity is more wide spread is the innovation of the entrepreneur.  Automobiles were at one point only for the rich.  Competition drove Henry Ford to come up with the assembly line and the car became available to almost everyone.  We have seen the same thing in computers and telephones.  Wood was replaced by coal.  Coal was replaced by oil products.  Electricity became a common resource.  Nuclear energy is now available.  Perhaps we will see engines run by hydrogen and solar power may become economically feasible.  Every step generates more wealth and the cycle will keep going on.

So don’t get too upset by the economists who are living in the days of barbarian looting.  Most of the well-known ones are socialists at heart and live off the productivity of others.  If they had their way we would be back to feudalism, with them as the nobility, of course.  In reality, there is enough to go around and more coming.  All we need to do is free enterprise and the ability to pursue our dreams.

Smith, Adam.  The Wealth of Nations.  Norwalk, Connecticut:  The Easton Press, nd.

homo unius libri

Friday, January 17, 2020

Opus 2020-016: Time to Shut Up and Deal

Would God play poker?  He would know what your cards were.  He would call all your bluffs.  He would know when to draw on an inside straight.  If He wanted to cheat He could change the cards in His hand. 

I guess the real question is, “Would you play poker with God?”  Assume that He would not cheat by switching the two of diamonds for the queen of hearts.  Of course He is God so I assume He would not be able to not know what was in your hand.  What kind of game would it be?  You might win a few hands but there is no way you could walk away from the game a winner.

In life are you trying to draw to an inside straight?  Are you bluffing?  Have you considered the odds?

Your deal.

homo unius libri

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Opus 2019-015: Pick Your Future, part 3 of 3, Beyond the Dream

Dreams are wonderful.  In my dreams I am God’s Golden Boy.  I am a world saver.  I am awesome.  Not so much when I wake up.

How do the dreams of the Progressives and free enterprise buffs look in real life?  Nowhere near the ideal of either group but if you could travel back in time you could see the difference in real life in a place called Berlin.  At the end of World War II Germany and Berlin were both divvied up into four sections to the four major victors.  The western quarters merged and the Soviet quarter started putting up barbed wire to keep people in.  Berlin, the capital, was located in the middle of the Soviet quarter.  Before the Berlin wall fell the three sections in the west of the city were a reflection of the free market of the West.  The one quarter in the east was a good example of life under socialism.  It was possible for Western tourists to travel from one to the other.  The west was vibrant, colorful and bustling.  The east was dull and dreary.  This is literally true.  It was like someone turned off the zest of life when you crossed the border.  For those too young to have seen this difference between Communism and free enterprise, watch the opening moments of The Wizard of Oz.  Do you remember the first time you saw Dorothy move from black and white to technicolor?  That is what it is like going from one reality to the other.

One of the events that led to the fall of the Berlin Wall was a simple visit to an American grocery store by Boris Yeltsin in 1989.  You can read about it at The Federalist if you want.  He could not believe the simple daily reality of an American grocery store.  It is something that we take for granted but much of the world would think they had gone to Oz.

Socialism has a long list of poster children.  The most current example of the socialist dream is Venezuela.  A few years ago it was the wealthiest country in South America and then the socialists took the wheel and began to drive the country into the ground.  Grocery stores are empty.  Electricity is often not available.  Life is miserable.  It is socialism in action.

The closest to the free enterprise reality would be what we call the West.  All the necessities of life are freely available.  All the comforts are available.  Of course much of that is available in the Socialists paradises too but only to the elites who run the country.  In free enterprise they are available to just about everyone. 

What is your dream?  If it only involves you then dream all you want and enjoy your sleep.  If it involves forcing your dreams on everyone else then you need to wake up before someone else builds the wall you will run into.

homo unius libri

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Opus 2019-014: Pick Your Future, part 2 of 3, The Dreams

What is the dream of each group?

The Progressives dream of a world of perfection.  They see everyone being equal and having their needs met.  Everyone has a job at a good wage.  Everyone has a nice home.  Everyone has great health care.  Everyone goes to college.  Everyone..., well you get the idea.  They actually believe this is possible.  What they don’t share with you is that there is another group outside of “everyone”.  Those are the wise ones who put this all together.  They tell you what a good wage is.  They set the cost of the foods you eat and tell you how much is enough.  If you step out of line they come down on you like a ton of bricks.  They assure you it is for your own good.  They also assure you that they deserve to live in those bigger and nicer houses up on the hill with the gates around them and the security guards.  They deserve chauffeured limousines while you ride the bus.  They deserve Kobe steak when you only get turkey bacon and beef flavored tofu.  From their point of view it is a perfect world.  You are incapable of knowing what is best for you.

The free enterprise dream is a world of opportunity and liberty.  Everyone is free to go as far in life as their natural ability and willingness to work will take them.  There will be a group at the bottom economically but they will have opportunity if they want to pursue it.  There will be a generous portion at the top enjoying all of the things money can buy.  In the middle will be the overwhelmingly largest group.  This middle group will be secure and prosperous.  The only hurdles will be the limits on their willingness to work and be good stewards of the rewards of work.  They believe they have a chance to make it into the top group and many do.

To be continued...

homo unius libri

Monday, January 13, 2020

Opus 2019-013: Pick Your Future, part 1 of 3 The Dreamers

What kind of future do people dream about when they are lost in their fantasies?  Keep in mind that reality is never totally like dreams but it gives an indication of what people want.  I am going to look at the future fantasies of the Progressives as opposed to those who believe in free enterprise.

Progressives include a lot of people who have never used the term.  It includes the socialist elites.  This would be made up of all the people in the media, education and government who feel they are so superior that they deserve to make decisions for everyone else.  They want government control of everything.  For that reason it includes most of the professional politicians of both parties.  This would also include many business people who should be free enterprise capitalists but are really into crony capitalism.  Crony capitalism is demonstrated by the rich businessmen being in bed with the government and using government regulations to keep the smaller business from succeeding.  This would also include the rioters calling themselves Antifa. 

Those who believe in free enterprise want a minimum of government interference.  They feel they are grown ups and can make their own decisions.  They are willing to take risks and accept the rewards or the cost of failure.  They don’t believe that a government appointee can make any kind of plan that will work in the real world.

To be continued...

homo unius libri

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Opus 2020-012: Reflections of Glory

The glories of nature can teach us lessons about the Creator, after all He is the one who made it all and designed it to work together.

It was a night with a bright moon.  I don’t remember if it was a full moon or just close but you felt like you could see as well as day.  It was awesome.  But the light is just a reflection of the energy that comes from the sun.  It is a poor substitute for the real thing if you are trying to read or do some kind of detailed word.  Beautiful but limited.

Moon light compares to sun light in the same way that the glory of creation compares to the glory of God.  Sometimes I go off on the tangent of how detailed and complex something is.  Let’s say I cut myself somehow and I start thinking about the blood that is flowing.  Blood takes the necessities of life to every cell in your body and also carries away the waste materials.  It does both at the same time and all the time.  It is distributed to cool you on a hot day and retain heat on a cold day.  When you bleed it clots to stop the loss.  It carries white blood cells.  Among other things the white blood cells kill invaders protecting you from illness.

And we have not even started thinking about the cell structure.

Just a simple question like, “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” can get you going in endless cycles if you don’t believe in creation.  How can you have billions of people and each one is different?

God could answer these questions.  Whether we could understand the answers, I don’t know but I am willing to wait and see what He has to show me after the resurrection.  Until then I will keep living in wonder and awe.

How many shades of green are there in the same tree throughout a year?

homo unius libri

Friday, January 10, 2020

Opus 2020-011: It Takes All Kinds

Animals carry the burden of anthropomorphic personality traits being associated with them.  The illustrations are everywhere.  Foxes are clever.  Cats are independent.  Worms are slimy.  Democrats are..., well, maybe I should not go there.

My tangent started with the idea of sheep and goats.  We talk about them being separated.  This is a Biblical idea coming from the final judgement day when God separates those going to heaven from those going to hell.
(Mat 25:33 KJV) And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
Among the Jewish rabbis the right was good and the left was bad, really bad.  So sheep are associated with those who have lived righteous lives and the goats are the rebellions ones headed for hell.  I don’t care how cute you think baby goats are.  In this usage they symbolize everything nasty. 

Then we have the modern survivalists who want to talk about sheep and wolves.  In this division the character of sheep is that they are stupid, timid and weak.  That matches the Biblical picture.  This is the general population, the ones who go to an all night 7/11 in the wrong part of town wearing only a bathrobe and some slippers.  They then will lock their keys in the car.  They are considered prey of the wolves. 

Wolves are predators looking for their next meal.  The idea is that there are wolves out there living off the sheep.  This can be as illegal as muggers and rapists.  It can be as everyday as credit card companies that know you won’t read the small print.  They live off the sheep.

Survivalists then talk about sheep dogs.  These are the strong ones that take on the responsibility of protecting the sheep.  They are creatures of force like the wolves but see their role as protecting the weak.  In the dramas this would be the cop that risks his life to stop a mob hit.  In our neighborhood it might be someone who speaks up when someone is being taken advantage of.  Generally they are good guys.  They are kind of like guardian angels.

This made me wonder if there is anything such as a goat dog.  This would be someone who looks out for the deviants in society.  They get corrupt politicians off the hook.  They get convicted murderers out of jail on technicalities.  They do everything they can to derail Christian culture and cull out the remnants of Biblical values.  Maybe they would be guardian demons. 

What are you?

homo unius libri

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Opus 2020-010: New Law: Truth in Labeling

I am tired of being fooled on the internet.  I think we need some Truth in Posting laws to go along with truth in advertising, lending and such.  I am referring to the false claims of unattributed links.  This thinking started with the numerous uses of Babylon Bee ideas. 

I would suggest that emojis be required to tell us if the information being passed came from a humor or satire site or if it was intended as satire by the authors.  Maybe we could have certain fonts reserved for specific venues.  It is amazing how many people have no sense of humor or discernment and can go off thinking that the Democrats actually wanted to fly flags at half mast to honor the recent Iranian general’s demise.  This could cause people of the left to look like fools because they act like these stories are true.  They are laughable enough without this added aggravation. 

While we are at it we might require that sites like the New York Times and Washington Post have an emoji all their own.  It would also help to have links that require you to sign in or subscribe to get the whole story be labeled and save us time.

I am getting old.  I don’t have time to waste.  Do we need a Constitutional Amendment for this?

homo unius libri

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Opus 2020-009: Firsts: Obama or Carter?

One of the promises of Barak Obama was to fundamentally change America.  He tried this in many ways and is still in the game doing what he can to move us toward a socialist utopia.  One of the criticisms I have heard has to do with his attempts to publically undermine the current president.  The criticism comes in the form of saying there has been an unbroken tradition that ex-presidents would not criticize a sitting president.  It was not done.  I have seen a number of meme posters saying that is what Obama is doing.

I came across a discussion in a book called Dupes that sees it differently.
“Throughout the debate over war in Iraq, Carter smashed the time-honored tradition that ex-presidents refrain from public criticism of sitting presidents, especially in wartime.  Carter penned an op-ed for the Washington Post title, ‘The Troubling New Face of America,’ in which he lamented the ‘belligerent and divisive’ Bush administration and its lack of ‘comprehensible’ Middle East Policy.”  page 435
It would seem that Jimmy Carter was as guilty as Obama.  It could be that Obama feels he is justified because Jimmy Carter did it.  Either way it is another indication of how the politics in this country is degenerating. 

One thing that I find of interest is that opinion that Carter used to be considered the worst president in American history and that he has now been replaced by Obama.  It would seem that the quality of the men has a lot in common.  I don’t think that is a badge of honor.

Kengor, Paul.  Dupes.  Wilmington, Delaware:  ISI Books, 2010.

homo unius libri

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Opus 2020-008: Headlines: Split

I first saw the reference at The Bongino Report.  It seems that the United Methodist Church is considering a split over the issue of homosexuality.  The homosexual community has long been trying to make inroads into getting the Methodists to accept homosexuality as compatible with Christianity.  There have been ordinations and marriages even though the agreed statement in the book of Discipline says that homosexuality is incompatible with the Christian faith. 

I thought the battle was over long ago but in the last official vote the governing body of the church voted to maintain the traditional position and reject homosexual marriage and ordination.  If a split is to come it will be decided at the General Conference which begins on May 5.  There are at least four plans for resolving the conflict.  You can find those at the Methodist web site.

With the typical arrogance of the left everything seems to point that the Methodists holding to the traditional understanding of sex would be the ones to leave and start a new denomination.  This is the way they look at it even though the Bible rejecting group is in the minority.  If the split takes place it will bear watching for those looking for a church home.  For me it will depend on their stand on abortion.  We shall see.

I have always maintained that church splits are not necessarily a bad thing.  They happen all the time on the local level.  Sometimes they are based on simple arrogance and pride but often they come down to legitimate concerns.  Sometimes when a church splits both offshoots die.  Sometimes they both thrive.  It remains to be seen what happens with the Methodists.

The Babylon Bee has a piece out on this entitled, “Untied Methodist Church to Split over Whether or Not to Be Christians.”  It is amazing how much of the controversy they put into the satire.

homo unius libri

Monday, January 6, 2020

Opus 2020-007: Toddlers and Wise Men

Today is Epiphany.  It is the day that celebrates the coming of the wise men.  The Eastern churches celebrate Christmas on this day.  I believe it marks the end of the Advent season.

There is some indication that Jesus could have been two years old when the wise men finally showed up.  This is arrived at based on two passages of scripture.  The first is the way in which King Herod questioned them and what he wanted to know.
(Mat 2:7 KJV) Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, enquired of them diligently what time the star appeared.
Then, when they left without filling him in we see his attempt to get rid of the competition.
(Mat 2:16 KJV) Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently enquired of the wise men.
Evidently the wise men had shared something about two years.

So the wise men could have been treated to a toddler instead of an infant.  That gets me because I am blessed with a toddling granddaughter in the house.  I can just picture Jesus getting into all of their luggage, wanting to pet their camels and crawling under their robes.  Can you picture one of this wise men from the east having a baby slobber on them?

The unconsidered glories of Christmas.

homo unius libri

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Opus 2020-006: New Habit Developing

I am finding that I need a new pattern in the morning.  I need to check Babylon Bee before I go to any news or comment sites.  I am finding that many of the believable articles that are being quoted are really posts from the Christian satire site.  It might also help to check The People’s Cube.

I have no problem with them quoting but I wish they would be more clear in their source.  If I am going to read the article I would rather give the traffic to the original creator.

Mornings are getting ever more complex.

homo unius libri

Saturday, January 4, 2020

Opus 2020-005: Backlash

One of the mantras I keep hearing in the Progressive (sic) Media is that the killing of two Iranian terror producers will just cause a backlash from the Iranians.  That is the kind of response that Iran wants.  They want us to be cowering under our beds hoping that the bad people won’t get mad at us.  It is standard behavior for bullies.

It was the position of Jimmy Carter when the Iranian mob stormed the embassy.  It was the position of Barak Obama in the Benghazi slaughter.  How did those work out?  It was not the response that Donald Trump dished out. 

Will there be more violence?  Probably, but there would have been more violence anyway.  The difference is that now they know we will hit back and so they will be a little slower to up the ante.  They will think twice.  They will flinch.  Eventually they will show a bit of respect for strength.

We need to understand one major difference between a culture steeped in Christian values and one based on the Koran.  Basically Christianity grew out of weakness.  It first spread among the lower classes and helpless.  It was 300 years before there was a Christian army.  It lead to attempts to eradicate slavery and establish literacy.  Islam started with the sword and continues with the sword.  It has the attitude that turning the other cheek is a sign of weakness and worthy of contempt.  Slavery still thrives in Islamic countries.

I was 10 years old before I learned that bullies are cowards.  I think Trump was born understanding that.

homo unius libri

Friday, January 3, 2020

Opus 2020-004: Headline: Hillary as Chancellor

Evidently Hillary Clinton is going to be a Chancellor at Queen’s University Belfast in Northern Ireland.  When I first saw this I assumed it was Babylon Bee or The People’s Cube.  Evidently not.  She actually has been awarded this position.  I wonder if she will wear her orange pantsuit.

The link I followed took me to Fox news.  It will be interesting to find out if they got trolled by BB.

Sometimes life is the best satire.

homo unius libri

Opus 2020-003: Headlines: A Twofer

It seems like an American drone took out several leading Iranian killers.  How do we respond?

We could have sympathy for their families and loved ones.  We could keep in mind that even brutal killers can have children and wives that care about them. 

We could also rejoice with the many families that will not lose loved ones now that these are gone.  Of course we will never know who those would have been so maybe we can all rejoice that we are a little bit safer today.

Was this drone attack wrong?  For you or me on our own, possibly.  For the government of the United States, no. 
(Rom 13:3-4 KJV) For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:  For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
Note that one of the legitimate roles of governments is to deal with evil people.  I understand that often depends on your point of view but to any objective observer the United States is much closer to being the good guy than Iran.  Of course if you are an America hater, which includes most of the Democrat leadership and elites, then it doesn’t matter what the facts are, Orange Man bad.

If Iran wants to reciprocate then they will have my blessing is they will identify and eliminate the people in the deep state who feel it is righteous to murder witnesses and manipulate the population for their own personal power.  That way they could go after the real Great Satan and make the world better for everyone.

It is starting to look like a good year.

homo unius libri

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Opus 2020-002: New Laws: An Electoral High School

We need to establish something along the lines of the Electoral College in regard to state government.  What brings this to my mind is the takeover of the Virginia state government my the left.  It is an example of what happens when the example of California is followed by another state. 

We see how a few large cities can rob the rest of the citizens of the liberty they have always known.  In California you have the population of the Los Angeles metropolitan area that makes up almost half the states population.  Add the other large cities and most of the state has nothing to say about what goes on.  In New York once you get outside of the NYC area everything gets conservative.

The Founders understood this potential problem.  In fact the debates leading up to the Constitution reflected this concern as the populous states wanted a congress based on population while the smaller states wanted it to be equal between states.  This led to the compromise of a two house legislature.  Each one was based on the concerns of one type of state and the checks and balances were maintained.  States should be forced to adopt the same pattern for their state legislatures so that rural people would not be overwhelmed by the tyranny of the cities.

The electoral college is the means of applying this to the executive branch. 

I would suggest that states adopt a form of the Electoral College bicameral checks and balance like we have in congress.  Maybe we could call it the Electoral High School.  The purpose of the checks and balances were to protect the minority from dominance by the majority.  Let’s extend it to the state level.  In Virginia around 90% of the counties have joined a Sanctuary County movement in regard to the threats to gun ownership from the statehouse.  If one of the houses of the state legislature were made up of equal representation by the counties this would not be happening.  I am not sure how it would effect the governorship.

homo unius libri

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Opus 2020-001: Give Arbitrary Some Meaning

Three red letter days are special to all of us and totally arbitrary.  There is no reason why they could not be celebrated on a different date, but here we are. 

The first was Thanksgiving, a time for looking back and realizing how blessed we are.  If you are an American you know the best that the physical world has to offer.  If you are an American you know the most liberty and opportunity that history has to offer.  If you add to that a belief that Jesus died for you and you have it all. 

Then comes Christmas, a time for looking up and into the face of eternity, at least for Christians.  Even non-Christians celebrate the season with its atmosphere of hope and joy. 

Now we contemplate the future and speculate.  What will the new year bring?  There is no way of knowing.  Much is out of our hands.  We can look at the big world and feel totally helpless.  Will the traitors and coup leaders pay for their crimes?  Will the economy stay strong?  Will it all come apart and descend into civil war and insurrection? 

It is much more important to look at what we can do something about.  We think of this as an election year but we need to understand that every year is an election year in a free society.  We will be voting on school boards and county offices.  We will be electing mayors and sheriffs.  Our votes and influence can make a difference in those areas.  Do you live in an HOA?  Do you do your best to ignore it?  Why not get elected to it and make a difference in your neighborhood.

We can do something about our families and our personal lives.  More time in the right places and a careful use of the word “no” could make a big difference.  Maybe your kids don’t need to be on the soccer team but instead need to work in the yard with dad.  Maybe instead of ballet they could get involved with some of the shut-ins in your church. 

In spite of all the problems we see, we live in the best time of history.  We have dental anesthesia.  We have hot and cold running water.  We can travel across the country without every local power broker stopping us and saying, “Papers please.”  We have choices in the type of bread we buy and only stand in line when we check out.  We can worship without the government telling our children they can’t go to college. 

So today have a happy new year and tomorrow start on a blessed year long.

homo unius libri