God's Politics

God's Politics


Bernice Powell Jackson: Hope Does Not Disappoint Us

posted by gp_intern

Bernice Powell Jackson was one of several speakers at the March 16 Christian Peace Witness for Iraq service at the National Cathedral. This is the prepared text of her message that evening.

+ Watch video of the entire service

Hope. In English, one syllable. Four letters. But beneath those few letters is a breadth and depth of meaning, a bridge between life and death, a beacon leading out of the darkness. In the fifth chapter of Romans, Paul wrote:

And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.

Paul knew that it was hard to be a Christian in Rome. So he wrote to the Romans those words: Hope does not disappoint us.

It’s hard to be a Christian in Washington. We live in a time of cynics. Many years ago I visited South Africa and on my last day of my trip I met a woman who was 126 years old. I came home and often told the story of meeting this remarkable woman. On more than one occasion I was asked, “How did you know for sure she was 126 years old? Did she have a birth certificate?” My response was, “They probably didn’t have birth certificates for anyone in South Africa 126 years ago, but they certainly didn’t have them for black people. And besides,” I would ask, “even if she was 10 years off in her age, she was still 116 – and how many of us have met someone that old?” A time of cynics.

Cynics who do not understand that war can never lead to peace. Cynics who do not understand that violence can only beget violence. Cynics who do not understand that guns can never lead to democracy, and that lies can never lead to truth. But Paul’s word is an antidote to cynicism. Paul’s word is that hope does not disappoint us. Now hope is something different from optimism.

When the imprisoned Czech writer and later President Vaclav Havel was asked about hope, he said that hope is a state of mind, a dimension of the soul, an orientation of the heart that transcends the world that is immediately experienced and is anchored somewhere beyond the world’s horizons.

Hope, for Christians, is anchored in the understanding that with God all things are possible. Hope is that thing that allowed my slave forebears to know, deep down in their souls, despite all that the world told them, despite all that the world did to them, that one day they, or their children, or their children’s children, would be free. Because this is God’s world.

Now, war is the absence of hope. War is the declaration that only violence can conquer the hearts and minds of a people. We are here tonight to dare to say that is not true.

Hope, for Christians, is inextricably linked to the love of God, which is the message of Jesus, which is Jesus himself. On this day, in this place, at this time, Jesus’ words resound throughout the rafters and among the pews of this hallowed place. Words of hope and not words of despair. Words of life and not words of death. Words of love and not words of hate.

I give you a new commandment that you love one another; just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. Jesus’ words and Jesus’ actions.

Hope, for Christians, can never just be a word – it must become an action. Hope for Christians must be a public commitment to follow Jesus in the non-violent struggle for justice and peace. Hope for Christians must be a public sharing of the love of Jesus. Hope for Christians must be a public witnessing to the power of love to overcome hate, to overcome cynicism, to overcome war, to overcome death itself.

So, tonight, we pray. Tonight we march. Tonight we love. And in doing so, we hope. Because hope does not disappoint us.



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moderatelad

posted March 21, 2007 at 8:44 pm


Cynics who do not understand that war can never lead to peace. Cynics who do not understand that violence can only beget violence.So how do you balance the above statement with WWII Germany and Japan? Without war – where would the world be today? Cynics who do not understand that guns can never lead to democracy, and that lies can never lead to truth.Guns do not lead to democracy – people lead to democracy and sometimes they need to use guns to stop the mayhem. Lies never lead to truth -(oh right – Bush lied people died) Bad Intel does not make one a liar. Also several other countries and liberal members of congress made public statements about what Iraq ‘had’ or ‘didn’t have’. You talked about South Africa – can I remind you that it took a war to free the slaves in this country. That war started out as one to preserve the Union and became one that freed the slaves. You do make a shift in armed conflict now and again. Had Lincoln not made that shift – I believe that it would have taken another war to free the slaves at a later date. Later – .



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Carl Copas

posted March 21, 2007 at 9:20 pm


moderatelad, you pose some fair questions.I’m not a pacifist, in part because there doesn’t appear to be any way Hitler could have been stopped short of war.Could one argue that actually war _always_ leads to peace? The shooting has to stop sometime. The problem is that often it’s a peace without justice, thereby setting up conditions that will lead to further warfare at some point.



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moderatelad

posted March 21, 2007 at 10:05 pm


Carl Copas | 03.21.07 – 3:25 pm | #Peace by war is only accomplished when the enemy is beaten down into total surrender – much like Germany and Japan. Justice comes when those who caused the war are tried and sentenced – like the Nuremburg Trials. Korea is still at war. The Armistice that ended WWI only set the foundation for WWII. War is the last act of a rational society to deal with an irrational group. No one wins in war but the outcome can be beneficial to all concerned. Look where Europe is today and where would it have been with the Third Reich? We are in WWIV as I see it, a war like none other the world has ever seen and no one wanted. But we must win. For if we loose, the world will be at war for decades to come with terror all around the world. Even so Lord Jesus – quickly come! Later – .



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butch

posted March 21, 2007 at 11:06 pm


(oh right – Bush lied people died) Bad Intel does not make one a liar. moderatelad And blaming bad intel dosen’t mean you aren’t lying?



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moderatelad

posted March 21, 2007 at 11:19 pm


butch | 03.21.07 – 5:11 pm | #Then I guess that Russia – Germany and England all lied too. This is why I am in the process of becoming an isolationist – we should never again go to the aid of any country or people group because the cost it too high for us to stomach. At this point – Darfur can go to hell – I will not support any action by our gov’t as it causes too much confussion or hatred here in the US. Peace at any price – better Red than dead – whatever… Later – .



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Butch

posted March 21, 2007 at 11:31 pm


whatever… moderatelad whatever… This is the point you know that they have stopped or can’t think!



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Will

posted March 21, 2007 at 11:35 pm


“Darfur can go to hell.” That sounds exactly like something Jesus would say! Burn in hell you dirty Africans!



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Doug7504

posted March 22, 2007 at 12:22 am


Ironic, isn’t it, that in one sentence a person can rationalize the deaths of thousands of innocents, and in the next, pray for Jesus to come quickly? Pray for each other, that all of our cynicism, and sin and hatred may be washed away. We are a people who have lost our way, who have forgotten who Jesus was and what He brought to the world. Wars which end in no justice bring further wars…only God’s justice will end them. trust in God, not in governments, and politics, and nationalism which will only lead to the never-ending wars one of you mentioned above. Lord Jesus, forgive us our foolish pride, vanity, and cynicism. Peace.



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Mary

posted March 22, 2007 at 12:24 am


I have been reading these comments and have not said anything, but this gets to be too much for me.Non-war is not peace–it is just not being at war–yet. The seeds for the next war are always there in the surrenders and in the treaties from the previous war, which represent conquering rather healing. As was said, there is no justice in the resolutions to these wars and hence there can be no real peace–no shalom–until there can be real justice for everyone and real healing. It was pointed out that the Civil War freed the slaves, but The Civil Rights Movement started the process of bringing about racial equality. If Martin Luther King and his followers had chosen to fight rather than to be nonviolent–the attention would have focused on their violent behavior and any response to it would have been justified and where would they be today? That movement would have been beaten down by the authorities with the full support of society at large. They would have become the “bad guys” and they would still be riding at the back of the bus.



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Doug7504

posted March 22, 2007 at 12:36 am


Mary…well said! Bless you! Peace.



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jurisnaturalist

posted March 22, 2007 at 2:13 am


WWII was over at Stalingrad in 1941 before the United States entered. We provoked Japan to attack us by chocking their imports, like the pirates of yore. War is what happens when one state attempts to extend the coercive powers it exercises over its citizens to the citizens or power holders of another state. It is a fight amongst wolves over sheep, only they let the sheep do the butchering for them and then argue over how to divvy up the fleece. The problem isn’t war, its the wolves. Nathanael Snow



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jurisnaturalist

posted March 22, 2007 at 2:18 am


The Civil War was fought over tariffs, taxes, and states’ sovereignty. The slaves were just icing on the cake. Lincoln got what he wanted, too, a nice centralized powerful government with himself at the center. He destroyed everything the Jacksonians had done to bring America back to liberty. The Cult of Lincoln has been extremely harmful in perpetuating statist sympathies among American Christians. Nathanael Snow



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bubba

posted March 22, 2007 at 3:21 am


WWII was over at Stalingrad in 1941 before the United States entered. We provoked Japan to attack us by chocking their imports, like the pirates of yore. Love that revisionist history…



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Ian

posted March 22, 2007 at 11:43 am


Hope for Christians must be a public witnessing to the power of love to overcome hate, to overcome cynicism… My father was a veteran of WW2; his public witness was as a Christian, loving enemies, not just ‘brothers’. I hope as an Australian Christian that love will overcome hate/war/cynicism/politics – and that neither the US nor Australia adopts isolationist policies which mean we ignore Darfur etc.



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rain man

posted March 22, 2007 at 2:09 pm


From a purely common sense perspective, I agree with those who argue for the apparent necessity for war. It’s part of human nature. But haven’t we been given a new nature? How do you reconcile the words of Jesus, who never said a word about a “just war” with the idea of going to war at all, let alone the monstrous idea of pre-emptive war.



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moderatelad

posted March 22, 2007 at 2:43 pm


Will | 03.21.07 – 5:40 pm | #I think you missed my point -I have written in the past that we should do something. But with the SP’s and Sojo – if a Republican would do something – they would be wrong. Sojo talks a lot about what needs to be done but will do nothing in the long run except talk – talk – talk. Where would the world be today if they had been in charge in the late 30’s and early 40’s? I believe that we would be dealing with the Reich in Europe. Sojo praises the UN for their leadership – so let the UN handle Darfur. I will not support the US getting involved at this time. Iraq is going to be another Viet Nam with the Democrats in charge of Capital Hill as they are doing the same thing now that they did back then, cut off the funding. So we should not go into Darfur because when it gets a little to dicey for the Feinsteins of the world – they cut and run. Later – .



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moderatelad

posted March 22, 2007 at 2:46 pm


Butch | 03.21.07 – 5:36 pm | #I have no problem thinking – just know then it is not worth going down a trail because people have become so ‘scripted’ in their postings. so here’s to you Butch – whatever – .



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Donny

posted March 22, 2007 at 2:50 pm


“Hope” for Christians is the resurrected Christ Jesus returning and leading the world into a new heaven and a new earth. How many “Progressives” teach that Jesus was just a guy? Hope in “just a guy” has proven to be very deadly for mankind.Let’s “hope” that the real Christians are leading the world to this hope in the real Resurrected Christ Jesus. Of course, the resurrection is another “fundamental” truth of Christianity.



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Sarasotakid

posted March 22, 2007 at 3:25 pm


Donny: How many “Progressives” teach that Jesus was just a guy? Donny, maybe we should turn that question on its head and ask how many “conservatives” say Jesus is God but ACT like he was just another guy? I wonder which one is more offensive to God.



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Donny

posted March 22, 2007 at 3:32 pm


Anything Jim Wallis connected is partisan (Democrat) politics. As a side note, the words of Jesus do not reside nor resound in the Democrat party. Well, maybe the altered version do, but not the authentic version. They (the Left) are silencing the authentic Christian voice every single day. I mean c’mon now, how many ACLU, Sojouners, or Christian Alliance for Progress (heh!), Soulforce or Barry Lynn followers are in the GOP. The only hate allowed in hate crimes legislation (a leftist action) is legalized hatred towards Christians. I mean the Christians that still hold to the New Testament as a “finished” product. Any Christian willing to alter the Gospel for liberalism is free to enter the Leftist fold. But of course, this requires leaving the sheep following the Good Shepherd and joining in the one leading the world in its ways. “Peace, peace.” Oh really? Ever been to an inner city or an Islamic country?



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HASH(0x11822c50)

posted March 22, 2007 at 3:46 pm


What I would like to hear — Jim Wallis on Air America every Sunday. I think this would further expand his message and reach. He could preach to Democrats as well as listeners and that there are religious Democrats too.



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Donny

posted March 22, 2007 at 4:13 pm


Air America went the way of its morality. Bankrupt. I’d like to hear Jim Wallis at my Church. And I would like to hear him answer my peaceful questions about his fluid Gospel that changes at the whims of a decadent and hedonistic Democrat populace. “Um, ah, uh.”I would listen peacefully to his reply for a few hours, or for as long as it took him to justify the altering of the New Testament that he and his Liberal-Progressives Priests-of-a-different Gospel, have presented to the world. I am not afriad of Jim Wallis. I am afriad of his misled and fanatical folowers banging down my doors and forcing their way into my Church. Not that it would bother me to pay for a new door. I wouldn’t like what they would do to our children. It wouldn’t be peaceful or decent. It would be like listening to Air America. Old recorded broadcasts that is.



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jurisnaturalist

posted March 22, 2007 at 5:11 pm


There is nothing revisionist about 2 million dead Germans lying in the snow of Russia’s winter with their broken down tanks and weapons. Ask yourself, could the United States continue a war after losing 2 million men? We lost only 200,000 men in WWII and considered that a devastation. When the US imposed the requirement of Absolute Surrender upon the Germans, in the same way the Union imposed absolute surrender upon the Confederacy, we prolonged the war and insured the deaths of many more soldiers and civilians. I have nothing but gratitude for those soldiers who fought for my liberty and security. I have nothing but contempt for the government that sacrificed them for the sake of world domination. Don’t be such a sheep. Nathanael Snow



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Mike Hayes

posted March 22, 2007 at 5:12 pm


Bernice, Hope is audacious… and the one thing we all can control is our attitude… some easier than others, depending on the differing circumstances we all face… Hope is audacious… thank you for your message of hope.



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Carl Copas

posted March 22, 2007 at 5:35 pm


Mike Hayes: “Hope is audacious… thank you for your message of hope.” Amen. jurisnaturalist: Minor correction on Stalingrad; that battle was won in 1943, not 1941. “Unconditional surrender” was agreed to by Churchill and FDR, in both the European and Asian theaters. It was not unilaterally imposed by USA. Had it not been for slavery, the North and South would not have disagreed so sharply over tariffs,taxes, and states’ rights. As Vice-President Alexander Stephens wrote in 1861 after formation of the Confederate government: “Our republic is founded on the great truth that the Negro is not the equal of the white man.” Jefferson Davis and other Confederate officials agreed. Only after they lost the war, writing their memoirs in the late 1860s-1880s to create the myth of the Lost Cause, did they claim their secession had nothing to do with slavery. See for example, James M. McPherson, This Mighty Scourge: Perspectives on the Civil War.



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HASH(0x1182a00c)

posted March 22, 2007 at 5:39 pm


As a proud fundamentalist in the classical tradition of R.A. Torrey I get annoyed at these kind of conferences. I do not accept these liberal churches as true Christian Churches and I think usually their arguments are weak and inconsistent for the most part. That being said, I was against the Iraq War since the beginning and I want an immediate pull out. The problem is that fundamentalism has been hijacked by a bunch of post-millenialists that believe they are to bring the Kingdom of God by legislating morality and spreading democracy and has been redefined in modern culture. There was a time where being a fundamentalist was a neutral description with out loaded language. The war is wrong on a moral, economic, and political basis. But most of those who who were against the pre-emptive attack of Iraq are for nation building in Africa and deny the essentials to what makes Christianity Christianity (inerancy, virgin birth, bodily resserection of Christ, ect…). When will there be a movement for theological purity rather than political preferences in Christianity? That is what we need.



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Joseph Tracy

posted March 22, 2007 at 5:57 pm


Just a bit of news that serves as a demonstration that all things are possible. From the Democracy Now headlines. “A coalition of prominent conservative writers and former government officials have launched a new campaign to restore checks and balances and to protect civil liberties Founding members of the American Freedom Agenda include former Republican Georgia Congressman Bob Barr, who led the effort to impeach President Clinton, David Keene of the American Conservative Union, constitutional scholar Bruce Fein, and the writer and conservative direct mail pioneer Richard Viguerie. They are also calling for Congress to restore habeas corpus, end torture and extraordinary rendition, narrow the President’s authority to designate “enemy combatants,” prevent unconstitutional domestic spying and protect journalists from prosecution under the Espionage Act.”Rather an interesting admission that many traditional “conservative” values have been tossed aside under Bush Cheney.Could be just a drop Bush and regroup for 2008-2012 move, but it could also move the left and right closer to some traditional unifying values.



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jurisnaturalist

posted March 22, 2007 at 6:14 pm


Carl, Why did Stalingrad go on to 1943? It was lost already in 1941. Absolute surrender was required by UK and US. So? Why did we get in at all? Why couldn’t the UK defend herself? B/C her military was everywhere else in the world except in the UK!!! What a parallel to the US position today. I don’t deny that there was romanticization of the southern cause. The losers always get nostalgic. My point is that the Union’s motives were more about domination and centralization – Federalism – than about human rights or any other form of altruism. Many abolitionists were wholly against the war, esp. Lysander Spooner. Lincoln was not sympathetic to the slaves. It is now well documented in books like “Lincoln Unmasked” how, in his own words, Lincoln had Federalism and large Centralized government in mind all along. Nathanael Snow



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Don

posted March 22, 2007 at 7:47 pm


“They (the Left) are silencing the authentic Christian voice every single day. I mean c’mon now, how many ACLU, Sojouners, or Christian Alliance for Progress (heh!), Soulforce or Barry Lynn followers are in the GOP.” So Donny does equate authentic Christianity with the Republican Party. Either that or he didn’t really mean what he wrote here. Yes, Donny, the ultimate hope of all Christians is the return of Christ. Who would argue with that? But God has given us the capacity to hope in other things as well. Until Christ does return–and nobody can know when that will be–we can hope for a better world; not a perfrect one, of course, but maybe one with less suffering and less needless killing. And we can work toward that end as well. Donny, is it possible that God has given some individuals the gifts and callings needed for this kind of work? Unless motivated by hope, Christians could hardly have worked to end slavery, build hospitals and care for the sick, carve a new civilization in the New England wilderness, develop cures for diseases (yes, Donny, much of that work was done by Christians), build marvelous cathedrals pointing to the heavens, compose music to fill those cathedrals with glorious sound, eliminate racial segregation, etc., etc., etc. If the *only* hope Christians can ever have is in the return of Christ at the end of time, we might as well go hide in a cave somewhere with our survival gear and our white robes. I don’t think God has called us to do that. Do you? Peace!



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Carl Copas

posted March 22, 2007 at 8:05 pm


jurisnaturalist, I was wondering if you were going to cite “Lincoln Unmasked.” Again, I urge you to check McPherson, esp. “Southern Comfort,” his reviews of 3 books on the Civil War found in the New York of Books, Apr. 12, 2001, pg. 28-32. I doubt that it will change your mind in any substantial way. It may that you and I operate in such different paradigms that there can be not even a slight meeting of the minds on this issue. I’m not denying that Lincoln was racist (he was), nor am I denying that he was a good mid-19th century Republican who advocated a vision of a vigorous federal government that Southern and Northern Democrats found unnacceptable–in part because Southerners believed, correctly, that if such a fed government was captured by the GOP free-soilers then slavery was dead. But there was more to Lincoln than “Federalism and large Centralized government.” Or maybe he was lying in the Gettysburg Address and in his second inaugural speech of March 1865.



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Carl Copas

posted March 22, 2007 at 8:06 pm


That last post should read “New York Review of Books,” not “New York of Books.”



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splinterlog

posted March 22, 2007 at 9:42 pm


I couldn’t agree with you more regarding the need to create a vision that goes beyond the extremes of navel-gazing personal purity and hippy-dippy social consciousness. and I think usually their arguments are weak and inconsistent for the most part. I couldn’t disagree with you more here. Reading Josh McDowell, Normal Geisler, Chuck Colson, Fancis Schaeffer or hearing Hank Hannegraff on the radio, I don’t know whether to laugh or cry :)



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moderatelad

posted March 22, 2007 at 10:53 pm


Not to beat a dead horse – but I believe that the writer of this article should answer my questions? Cynics who do not understand that war… So how do you balance the above statement with WWII Germany and Japan? Without war – where would the world be today? Cynics who do not understand that guns can never… Guns do not lead to democracy – people lead to democracy and sometimes they need to use guns to stop the mayhem. Lies never lead to truth -(oh right – Bush lied people died) Bad Intel does not make one a liar. Also several other countries and liberal members of congress made public statements about what Iraq ‘had’ or ‘didn’t have’. Just wondering. Later – .



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jurisnaturalist

posted March 23, 2007 at 1:31 am


Carl, I think there is room for our minds to meet. My central paradigm is that as believers it is our responsibility alone to do any good that there is to be done in this world. Any impulse to achieve the ends of the church through the vehicle of the state is idolatrous and pagan. Attempts to paint historical figures in a better light, romanticization, should be revealed for what they are. I am interested in your McPherson book, and will be sure to peruse it sometime soon. Again, the ends don’t justify the means in regards to either the Civil War, WWI, WWII, Iraq, or any other war for that matter. I contend that fewer Jews would have been murdered, and fewer Russians under the Gulag, if we had just let Germany and Russia beat each other to a pulp while expanding trade throughout the world. The economy is what eventually beat Socialism. Only the Church can beat poverty. Nathanael Snow



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squeaky

posted March 23, 2007 at 1:55 am


Jurisnaturalist: “We provoked Japan to attack us by chocking their imports, like the pirates of yore.” We provoked Japan. If by that you mean we helped block their supply of oil to support their part in an aggressive war, I guess we did. But I suppose we could have just let them continue supplying their war machine without doing anything at all…blockading supplies, by the way, was a non-military solution to that conflict, but they responded by bombing us into the war. We maybe could have just let Germany and Russia beat each other to a pulp–but I suspect Hitler would have forced the issue either way. How many countries should he have been allowed to invade without anyone trying to stop him? He didn’t just invade Russia, you know… Considering the problems we had with Saddam because we didn’t insist on unconditional surrender, but allowed him to remain in power, it seems it would have been a grave error to allow Hitler to remain in power, or even in exile or under arrest, in a conditional surrender scenario.



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squeaky

posted March 23, 2007 at 2:05 am


Donny–you just make me sad. You see the world in such absolute terms. I can’t believe you have any joy in your life, not even the joy of the Lord. You sound so bitter, so unloving, so unwinsome, so uncompassionate, so unsympathetic, so mean, and sorry to say this, so un-Christlike. Christ never spilled the kind of vitriol that you shower on this site, and presumably, on the people around you, except towards those who judged others. May his peace envelop you so that you can truly show His love and His light to the lost in this world who you seem to vehemently despise. Strangely enough, in contrast to your approach, Christ came to seek and save that which was lost–even the vilest of us all, even those even the vilest spat upon. He loved the lost and those who needed Him most. He condemned none. You condemn all who don’t think like you. It’s very sad that you call yourself a Christian, and yet miss out on what it means to be like Christ. Check your fruits.



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butch

posted March 23, 2007 at 2:42 am


Check your fruits. squeaky Jesus would have shook the dust off his slippers and been on down the road long ago.



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squeaky

posted March 23, 2007 at 3:09 am


Well…perhaps you are right, Butch, but I’m not Jesus, and I can’t judge someone’s true state of hopelessness…although, He tells me I can, doesn’t He? At least to the point of not wasting valuable cyber-ink on someone who insists on reducing the complexities of all humans into boxes of fascism, socialism, hedonism, liberalism, etc.



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Payshun

posted March 23, 2007 at 3:12 am


historical clarification the civil war did not end slavery and neither did the emancipation proclamation. It did however outlaw some of the slave practices but it definitly did not end it. p



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Payshun

posted March 23, 2007 at 3:20 am


Donny, The returning Christ is not what you hope for unless you want to see untold death to millions. I mean don’t you and other evangelicals have some twisted end time millenial reading of Revelation? Do you have any idea what it would mean for Christ to come back if you believe in that ridiculous rendering of the text? I want Jesus back just w/o the death and destruction your warped understanding of scripture would create. From more smarter sources Christ and his kingdom are here, maybe, just maybe you should start living it in a way that does what Jesus did, like heal, love and feed people. Again I invite to try loving your enemies instead of judging them. It might help you to know grace more. God loves you Donny and he wants you back. p



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butch

posted March 23, 2007 at 3:33 am


Well…perhaps you are right, Butch, but I’m not Jesus, and I can’t judge someone’s true state of hopelessness.. sqeaky You may not know where he is but you do that there are others to find common ground and accomplish something! Work with them and with whatever energy you have left then deal with others.



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butch

posted March 23, 2007 at 3:45 am


but you do “know” that… Quit trying to save him, you are not Jesus, save yourself if you can and if you are convinced you are then do something. Rule; “you can not eradicate evil you can only do good”



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butch

posted March 23, 2007 at 4:30 am


How would you like to be the mother, father, wife, husband, son or daugher of the last American to die in Iraq.



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jurisnaturalist

posted March 23, 2007 at 4:56 am


Squeaky, I agree that something had to be done about Hitler, Mussolini, and Tojo. But something had to be done about Stalin and Mao, too. Military action is not the only solution. I think Christians should have opened their doors to the Jews, instead of turning them away, as so many did. I believe Christians should have opposed the treaty of Versailles. I believe Christians should have opposed the nationalistic and socialist tendencies which flooded over the world in the late 19th century, and should have favored a neutral stance. I believe Christians should have opposed the Spanish American War as racist and imperialist. I believe Christians should have freed their own slaves and bought the rest off of plantations to be freed as well. I believe only Christians are called to sacrifice for the sake of Justice, and if Christians don’t make that sacrifice, the state is no surrogate. The provocation of Japan began much earlier. The US supplied their enemies and Germany’s for many years before entering the war. Unconditional surrender means one thing in particular: We will kill your leaders. Which is what we did. Nevermind the thousands of innocents who had to die to achieve this end. It has yet to be seen whether the Iraqis were better off under Saddam or US occupation.



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squeaky

posted March 23, 2007 at 5:12 am


“I believe only Christians are called to sacrifice for the sake of Justice, and if Christians don’t make that sacrifice, the state is no surrogate.” but, ummm…if Christians don’t step up to the plate to do this, and simulataneously work to oppose the state’s efforts to do so…if Christians aren’t doing their job, I would never oppose the state’s attempt to do what Christian’s should be doing…and also, is it wrong for Christians to work through the vehicle of the state to step up for justice?Japan and Germany wouldn’t have had enemies had they not been the aggressors. US supplying those so-called enemies (I would prefer to call them victims) is the equivalent of aid. So–you would have kept Hitler in power, then. Surely you can predict the repercussions of such an act…even today, there are some older Germans alive at that time who think he was a great man. And yes–you are correct that Christians should have done all of those pacifist acts in history. We also should not have started the Crusades, and any other number of atrocities committed in the name of the Lord and that grieve my soul. For the record, I don’t think military action is the only solution–in fact I think it is the absolute last resort. I don’t believe we had reached that point with Saddam Hussein. However, when Hitler insisted on invading countries, I don’t think it would have been prudent to allow that to happen, and since he was pretty set on world domination, the only recourse was a military one–or should all of Europe just bowed to him, and allowed all those he considered subhuman to be extinguished in the death camps?



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butch

posted March 23, 2007 at 5:42 am


Squeaky, get off Germany, what do we do here and now.



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squeaky

posted March 23, 2007 at 6:43 am


I was just responding to jurisnaturalist’s post. I’m not sure why that should bother you. I don’t think Saddam Hussein was the threat Hitler was, no matter what rhetoric we are led to believe. Not that he couldn’t have been if he had been allowed free reign, but he wasn’t getting that. But, do we leave now? I don’t think so, unfortunatly. As much as I hate this war, we broke Iraq, and we need to fix it. How to fix it? I don’t know. Are any scenarios truly viable?



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Gloria

posted March 23, 2007 at 12:52 pm


Thank you, Bernice Powell Jackson. I had never heard of you until I saw this article. I have spent my entire half hour resaerching you on google. I am proud of all you have said and done.



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Gloria

posted March 23, 2007 at 12:59 pm


I now believe that even Hitler could have been stopped without war. I cannot say how it would have been done. But I believe nothing is impossible with God. when we talk about ending war, we are talking about doing thngs God’s way and God’s way will prevail. Don’t you believe that?



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caty

posted March 23, 2007 at 2:32 pm


As a Jew who embraces the voice of all faiths and who has subscribed to SoJo news for several years, I read with interest and respect all of the comments posted here and hope that my input will be respected and valued as well. No, I am not a messianic Jew (a concept that I find to be inherently oxymoronic), but have always found the words of faith- found in all of the writings- to be compelling and often inspiring. Truth is, none of us have the final answer nor can make the final judgement. That is the only “truth” to which I subsribe. What is most important to me is the willingness for all of us- and any of us- to consider the views of “the other” and allow it to enrich/challenge/inspire our thinking. My deepest hope (since that is the word that initiated this dialogue) is that this does not become a “war of words” but rather a forum for understanding and reconciliation of differences. We all have important work to do in this complicated world and would benefit from some true humility every now and again.



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moderatelad

posted March 23, 2007 at 3:03 pm


butch | 03.22.07 – 10:35 pm | #No more than those that were in WWI, WWII, Civil, Revolutionary, Korea etc. later – .



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butch

posted March 23, 2007 at 4:16 pm


As much as I hate this war, we broke Iraq, and we need to fix it. How to fix it? I don’t know. Are any scenarios truly viable? squeaky We broke it and now we can’t fix it. That is the same arrogance that led to breaking it. You can’t fix Donny and we can’t fix Iraq. They will if we get out of the way.



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butch

posted March 23, 2007 at 4:34 pm


Fixing Iraq has nothing to do with why we are there but lets try a way. Offer 1mm or 1mmm doesn’t matter to fix the water. Set up the money as a drawing account. Draw 1mm to pour the concrete for a water treatment plant, when that is done then draw 1mm for the building then 1mm for the pump, etc. Use the money for the water treatment plant, if they misuse it then it is gone and go on to fix all the infrastructure we broke. Let the Iraqi government, remember they have one, design it or sublet the work and do the whole thing. No money for guns!



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moderatelad

posted March 23, 2007 at 5:30 pm


butch | 03.23.07 – 10:39 am | #And where is this going to be located – because whatever area it is in – the head religious leader in that area is going to try to keep the water for themselves or try to charge others more for the water. If they can’t do that – they will just blow it up so that no one has it. Think a few people need to be sent to Allah so that this can happen. Later – .



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butch

posted March 23, 2007 at 6:04 pm


And where is this going to be located – because whatever area it is in – the head religious leader in that area is going to try to keep the water for themselves or try to charge others more for the water. If they can’t do that – they will just blow it up so that no one has it. Moderatelad Put it where ever he wants it and he can use any way he wants and if he blows it up it’s gone. We are no longer in charge, the sooner we accept that the better. I suggest paying because so many say we broke it so we have to fix it. If we are there they WILL blow it up so send the money one time for each project.



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butch

posted March 23, 2007 at 6:35 pm


It has yet to be seen whether the Iraqis were better off under Saddam or US occupation. jurisnaturalist Maybe, but they don’t have water, electricity, jobs or peace. Use any estimate between 60,000 and 600,000 iraqi deaths and 2,000,000 have left the country. Don’t know if they are better off or not but it ain’t good.



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squeaky

posted March 23, 2007 at 6:39 pm


The whole point of going into Iraq was to stabilize our oil resources in that region. Do you really think the current administration will trust the Iraqi government, sopping wet behind the ears and proven to be inadequate in stopping their own violence, to fix their problems (the problems we helped create)? And if we leave, and the situation gets worse, the Arab world sees us as even more evil than they already do. And our problems with terrorism are even worse. Equally bad scenarios can be seen if we stay, though. So this is a lose-lose situation, and I have yet to be convinced that any strategy will help us lose less than any other strategy.



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Carl Copas

posted March 23, 2007 at 6:47 pm


jurisnaturalist: “My central paradigm is that as believers it is our responsibility alone to do any good that there is to be done in this world.” Amen brother. You’re right–we do share some things, including fellowship and love in our savior Jesus Christ.



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butch

posted March 23, 2007 at 6:52 pm


The whole point of going into Iraq was to stabilize our oil resources in that region. Squeaky, what price are you willing to pay for whatever reason you think we went and are there for? If there is simply no win now, how long do you want to lose for whatever reason you think we are losing?



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squeaky

posted March 24, 2007 at 1:45 am


Butch–what do you think we should do, then? I recognize that if we leave, it may result in the destabilization of the entire region. I also recognize that if we stay, it could have the same result. Which losing scenario do you think we should take? Either way, the price will be extremely high (I’m sure there is some way to minimize the damage as much as possible–but do you trust the current administration to make the right choices in that regard? They have an abysmal track record when it comes to making the right choices. I suspect they would even find a way to screw up a peaceful withdrawal and make that worse for us than it was before). That’s all I’m saying. I can’t say what the best road is, although you seem to have some ideas, so tell us what they are and what you think will happen if we go the route you think we should go.



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butch

posted March 24, 2007 at 2:12 am


so tell us what they are and what you think will happen if we go the route you think we should go. squeaky I’m reposting a previous post which lets us do something and leave.Fixing Iraq has nothing to do with why we are there but lets try a way. Offer 1mm or 1mmm doesn’t matter to fix the water. Set up the money as a drawing account. Draw 1mm to pour the concrete for a water treatment plant, when that is done then draw 1mm for the building then 1mm for the pump, etc. Use the money for the water treatment plant, if they misuse it then it is gone and go on to fix all the infrastructure we broke. Let the Iraqi government, remember they have one, design it or sublet the work and do the whole thing. No money for guns! butch | 03.23.07



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moderatelad

posted March 24, 2007 at 3:54 pm


butch | 03.23.07 – 12:09 pm | #with you logic on this – why not just write the check out to UBL or El Sadr and let them purchase weapons with it. If your are going to help someone – don’t you want to make some kind of assurance that it will get to those that need it?Frankly – I believe that the Iraqi people are better off today because we are in the process of rebuilding the infrastructure that Saddam failed to maintain. Later – .



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Payshun

posted March 24, 2007 at 6:28 pm


Is this the same infrarstructure that has not had consistent electricity since we took over? We are doing one hell of a job. p



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kevin s.

posted March 24, 2007 at 6:50 pm


“Is this the same infrarstructure that has not had consistent electricity since we took over? We are doing one hell of a job.” This is a function of exponentially increased demand for electricity, not a reflection on our inability to build infrastructures.



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squeaky

posted March 24, 2007 at 9:31 pm


kevin s–what? you need to back that one up with some actual evidence.



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Payshun

posted March 25, 2007 at 1:07 am


Yah it does. Considering many of the areas w/o electricity had it before we bombed. p



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Payshun

posted March 25, 2007 at 1:13 am


Not only that but their increased demand is because we destroyed what little infrastructure they had. p



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moderatelad

posted March 25, 2007 at 5:21 pm


Payshun | Homepage | 03.24.07 – 12:33 pm | #electricity is just one part. Sewer, water, roads schoole, hospitals etc. When you look at the whole package – we are doing better then under Saddam and Company. Can you imagine where we could have been it Koffi and the UN Gang had actually worked with US and other on the food for oil. Maybe we would not have gone to war over this – what a concept. So much of the morality of the UN that Sojo talks about. Later – .



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Payshun

posted March 26, 2007 at 6:14 am


No we would have gone to war. You and I both know that. Bush was planning this from the beginning and needed an excuse to do it. Oh and UN did cooperate. It was the President that ended that, manufacturing evidence to support a reason for war which was not there. p



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moderatelad

posted March 26, 2007 at 4:05 pm


Payshun | Homepage | 03.26.07 – 12:19 am | #I don’t think we would have gone to war if several things had not happened. As for the evidence – England and Russia had come to the same conclusion indepently. So if it was ‘mfg’ – someone is very good. Iraq was a conflict waiting to happen much like Korea. The UN was ineffective in both situations. We are still under the threat of war with North Korea – thank you UN. Later – .



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Payshun

posted March 27, 2007 at 3:51 am


and thank you United States. Right now it would seem North Korea is sitting quietly but we know that will change.Iraq was boxed in and worked as a buffer to Iran now Iran is much stronger and far more dangerous. Thank you United States. p



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moderatelad

posted March 27, 2007 at 4:28 am


Payshun | Homepage | 03.26.07 – 9:56 pm | #it was just a matter of time as to which on Iraq or Iran was going to blow up. Now Sojo is pushing Darfur, when will they start writing about the ^&*() in Zimbabwea and all the people they he has killed – mamed etc. By the time the bleed enough ink to fill Lake Huron, they will be back to talking about the situation in Korea. And that will bring us back to Darfur – so pick which one is goin to be the flavor of the day for Sojo. Sorta like going to Culver’s – a new flavor everyday. I can not keep up and will not just jawjack about the issue. As some point someone has to do something. Later – .



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Emmitt Microni

posted May 19, 2011 at 7:50 pm


When I click on your RSS feed it throws up a ton of strange characters, is the problem on my end?



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Peter L. Griffiths

posted May 29, 2011 at 11:53 am


Berenice the great granddaughter of Herod the Great wrote the New Testament. Her motive was to put an end to animal sacrifice at the Jewish Passover. She was born in AD28 the only year mentioned in the New Testament. Most of her facts but emphatically not the dates were obtained from her distant cousin Josephus.



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I have read some excellent stuff here. Definitely worth bookmarking for revisiting. I surprise how a lot effort you place to create the sort of great informative web site.



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