Monthly Archives: December 2005

WorldNetDaily: Gun violence in Toronto: ‘It’s America’s fault’

Hal Lindsay (yes, of Late Great Planet Earth fame) has a good piece on why gun violence isn’t necessarily related to gun ownership. What I mean is, just because a person owns a gun doesn’t mean that they’ll use it illegally.

This is a great quote: “Never mind that it makes as much sense as dealing with drunk driving by banning cars, it made sense to the Canadians. So they banned guns.”

This is a good article.

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Lost Budgie Blog: Weasel Words Master: Islamic Scholar Tariq Ramadan to Attend Toronto Conference

I’m sorry, but this is too much.
The United States kicks out a terror mongering Islamic “scholar” and Canada not only welcomes him, but allows him to speak at a convention in Toronto. At Christmas-time no less!
First Abdullah Kadr, now this.

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See also Daniel Pipes for background. Michelle Malkin comments on it among other Canadian foibles.

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The Globe and Mail: RCMP launch trusts probe

I am anxious to see the Ralph Goodale income trust leak play out in the public sphere, especially Paul Martin’s reaction to it as the investigation continues. If Martin in any way indicts Goodale for mismanagement, he is essentially indicting himself in regards to his role in the sponsorship scandal. He can’t have it both ways, if the current Finance Minister is liable for the goings-on in his office in the Goodale situation, so too is the then Finance Minister liable in the sponsorship scandal.

This should be interesting indeed.

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Crux Books Inc.

Crux Discount Theological Bookstore is a great place to buy books for a decent price. It’s about a ten minute drive from my office, so I go there often. Now they’ve made it even easier for us lazy people and have gone all web-savvy.
Yes, that’s right, Crux Books is now online for your purchasing pleasure. What a grande world of technology we live in!

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Reformation 21 – Ferret Breeding

I just took the opportunity to read Carl Trueman’s latest “Wages of Spin” column at the Reformation 21 site. It was absolutely brilliant! And it was a good reminder to me that blogging is not an end in itself, and the end that it is working towards is not self-aggrandizement.
Trueman’s wit never ceases to amaze me. So subtle, yet so biting. I love it.
Anyways, all bloggers, especially Christian bloggers, should heed the good professor’s advice: the blogosphere is not a place where we become scholars. It is a place to communicate ideas, but it is not the academy. If one is to hope to become a scholar, it must be realized by putting in the hard work scholarship. That is, it must involve research, education, peer reviewed publications and a humility to never refer to onesself as a “scholar.”

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Strong World: Leaders response to Toronto’s crime

This is a very good post highlighting appropriate and inappropriate reactions to Toronto’s recent shootings. As I sat at my in-law’s house and watched the news reports, I knew what was going to be said from Paul Martin: “We need to ban all guns.” And of course, that is what he has said.
But is this really the answer that Canada is looking for? When I walk down Yonge Street and look at some thug with baggy pants, an Eminem t-shirt, a crooked had and a smoke in his hand, am I going to think for a second that he may not be carrying a gun? In spite of a ban? Of course I won’t. Just because a government bans it’s law abiding citizens from owning handguns doesn’t mean that criminals will abide by this law.
As Bill Strong points out in this post, it is stronger penalties for those who commit crimes that must be the first step taken. Strong provides an excellent quote from Julian Fantino, ex Toronto chief of police who said, “[W]e’re still dealing with a hard-core (group) of young people who are pre-disposed to violence, afraid of nothing and accountable to no one.”
If Toronto shapes up and starts acting like a real city, like New York City who cleaned house with Giuliani at the helm, we’ll see safer streets. That means if a person commits a crime, they should be penalized to the full extant of the law. If a hooligan pulls a pistol and fires it, he should be thrown in the slammer for a long period of time. No more handing out candy punishments that criminals laugh at, it’s time for the Canadian government to call a spade a spade and start calling a crime a crime.
Disarming its citizens is irresponsible and proves that the Liberal government doesn’t know how to properly lead this country. We as Canadians should not be surprised, how can we expect criminals to deal appropriately with other criminals? What Canada needs is a new government that can display the moral authority necessary to lead a country. I really do believe that Harper’s Conservatives can provide Canada with this type of leadership.
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See also this piece on Canadians blaming the US for the gun-problem instead of blaming themselves. Here’s a good quote from it: “The easy part is getting law-abiding citizens to disarm; the hard part is getting the guns from criminals.” [HT: Dust my Broom]

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First Pres. Columbia – Sermons

Linked above are sermons by Sinclair Ferguson from his new church in Columbia, SC. Also included are sermons by John R. De Witt, O Palmer Robertson, Douglas Kelly, Luder Whitlock, J. Ligon Duncan and others.
This will prove to be a great resource, I can hear the CD burners whirring already!

[HT: Justin Taylor at Ref21]

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"In the low down circles where he holds his court" – Cinderella Man

Over the Christmas long-weekend I watched the movie Cinderella Man twice. The first time on Christmas Eve after having an excellent dinner at my mom’s. The second on Monday night with Vicky’s dad after Vicky and I went to my aunt’s for dinner. The two times that I watched it left me utterly amazed. It was somewhat surprising that such a wholesome, pro-family movie would be made in Hollywood. As incredulous as it may seem, I am thankful to director Ron Howard for making such an endearing movie.

The story follows the life of New Jersey boxer James J. Braddock, nicknamed “The Bulldog,” and his rise to championship despite tough odds. Russell Crowe plays the part of Braddock while Renee Zellweger plays his wife Mae. Both actors performed their parts well and were highly believable as this real-life couple. I have traditionally not cared for Crowe nor Zellweger, except for Crowe’s portrayal of the neo-Nazi skinhead Hando in Romper Stomper. When I first heard about Cinderella Man, I had my doubts as to whether it would be any good due to the actors. Thankfully neither of them lived up (or down) to my expectations. Another actor who was absolutely excellent and should be mentioned was Paul Giamatti who played Braddock’s boxing coach and manager Joe Gould. Interestingly enough, it was filmed in Toronto with all of the major fight scenes filmed at the old Maple Leaf Gardens, which is just around the corner from where I live. I wish I would have known, maybe I could have been an extra??
Cinderella Man is a true story set in the Great Depression, which, I might add, Howard did a phenomenal job in portraying. Howard provides a good look into the essence of despair felt during this sad period in American history. Because of the focus on this period, the movie becomes more than just about boxing; it deals with issues such as poverty, family unity, courage and character.
The movie begins with Jim Braddock as a contender for the title just before the onset of the Depression. He has ten straight wins and is expected to go the distance in the ring. Yet, in the blink of an eye, his fortunes change. He loses his stocks and his cab company goes under. Due to his financial difficulties, Braddock has to fight constantly to make money and finds no time to recouperate after injuries. Fighting with a broken hand, he miserably loses a match that costs him his license. To provide for his family, Braddock finds himself a dock-worker daily seeking shifts, many that he does not get. This is truly a tale of going from riches to rags.
Yet in all of the struggles, Braddock never gives up hope. He was not only a fighter in the ring, but also in life. Throughout the tough time, he remains incredibly faithful to his wife, who in turn shows great love, support and respect for her husband. The Braddocks’ character is highly admirable and many today would do well to follow Jim’s example as a husband, a father, a worker and a friend.
Without wanting to give away anything about the movie that hasn’t been seen in the trailers, I do want to say that I was on the edge of my seat wondering how it would turn out. Just because the ending might seem predictable, don’t short-change the movie — you might be surprised!
For anyone looking for a good movie to watch with their family that has minimal swearing and maximum believability, rent Cinderella Man. You won’t be disappointed.

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2006 Alpha and Omega National Conference

James White is going to debate John Shelby Spong over the issue of homosexuality in 2006. When White debated Dominic Crossan and Marcus Borg this past year, I was happy to see the cordial attitudes from both sides. I viewed the whole encounter as a profitable and informative exchange. It was professional and done in a good spirit. But I have to admit, I hope that White demolishes Spong. I can think of no other person who is a worse heretic than this man and who has lead more people astray. My feelings against him are so strong that I don’t even like looking at his picture. My great disdain for Spong is greatly due to the fact that as my best-friend (at the time) was apostatizing from the faith, he was reading Spong. Although Spong is not the ultimate cause of my friend’s turning from Christ, he was definitely a contributor.
Unless Spong repents and turns to Christ, his punishment in hell will be greater than I could ever care to think. May God use James White to convert Spong, and if so, may Spong work at undoing all of the damage he has wrought on Christ’s church.
[HT: Challies]
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Click here for an interview done by the White Horse Inn guys with John Shelby Spong (scroll down about half way for the interview).

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snippets

Here is the blog of a homeschool mom in Maryland that I thought some of my fellow fishermen (and women!) on Lake Blog might enjoy.

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Between Two Worlds: Does the Date of Christmas Have Its Origin in Paganism?

This post is for my good buddy Scott.

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WorldNetDaily: Terrorists’ ‘poster boy’ exposed as media fraud

Y’know, I remember reading about this in the Toronto paper. I don’t usually weigh in on the war in the so-called “Holy Land” but this takes the cake. Were there any retractions from the major newspapers who put this on their front page? Did they place, in big, bold letters “Palestinian hoax!”?

Grrrrrr.

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Rite Turn Only: A Good Book Indeed

I heard this on CBC radio 1 this morning as I got ready for work. It appears that the University of Manitoba has in their possession a first edition King James Bible that possibly may have been owned by the King himself. Apparently there is a letter in the old Bible that says as much.

Scholars have determined this to be authentic based upon scribal errors known in the early editions. As well it is ornately decorated with oak, metal trim and various illustrations.

This is one of fifty known copies of an original KJV in the world. Others have sold for around half a million dollars in various auctions, so truly this is a great find for U of M.

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The Pentagon Breaks the Islam Taboo

My friend Josh emailed this to me and I thought I’d post it here. This article rightly claims that liberal MSM fails to recognize that terrorist acts carried out by Muslims is consistent with Islamic teaching. This is why a vast majority of Muslims in the middle east (and in North America I might add) are so pro terrorism.
Not only is the MSM involved in this, but western governments fail to label Islam as a violent religion that seeks world domination. But, as this article explains, it appears that things may be on the upswing. The article claims that officials at the Pentagon are beginning to do some research into Islam’s holy books and history with the desire to determine their history of violence. Let us hope that this results in western culture’s recognition that Islam is something to be feared, not embraced.
I do want to make a side-note here. I do not believe that all Muslims are violent or bent on world domination. But those who truly are peaceful are so because they fail to live out the Islamic faith as it is outlined in the Koran. They are, by God’s grace, inconsistent Muslims. With that said, I have no problem befriending Muslims, nor do I view their value as any lower than my own. Yet I do believe that they should abandon their worldview and embrace Christianity. But hey, I believe that about everyone!

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Cultural Change Conference – All Saints Presbyterian

I am currently listening to Dr. Peter Lillback lecture on “Christianity & Culture: The Huguenot Paradigm.” He gave this lecture at the Cultural Change Conference at All Saints Presbyterian Church. The other lecturer was Doug Wilson, who spoke on “Worship & Cultural Change.”

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WorldNetDaily: Candidate to supporters: ‘Islam won!’

The Canadian Liberal Party is providing an open door for Islam to walk into Canada and take it over. You may think I sound like a raving lunatic who should be standing on a street corner wearing a sandwich board that says, “Washington state to be destroyed by earth-quake and volcanic eruption in the year 2005, the month of June. Bible prophecy” but check out the linked article above.
The candidate for the Liberal Party in Mississauga-Erindale, Omar Alghabra, gave a pro-Islamic speech when he succeeded in winning the nomination for his riding.

He is quoted as saying, “This is a victory for Islam! Islam won! Islam won! Islamic power is extending into Canadian politics.”

When Paul Martin’s office was contacted about this, there was no reply. Apparently Mr. Martin doesn’t mind that an Islamic agenda enters the country, just as long as the “Christian agenda” of the Conservatives doesn’t.

Does this mean that a vote for the Liberal Party is a vote for Islam?? It just may be. For voters in Mississauga-Erindale it surely is.

For more see:
Proud To Be Canadian, Daimnation!, Conservative Life, Western Standard, John the Mad, Arabian Dissent.

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Reformata – A Reformed Blog – John Calvin and Thomas Aquinas on Astronomy

Professor Paul Helm has finally posted on Reformata! I’ve been anxiously awaiting this moment (sorry for the cheesiness, but it’s true). His post, to be honest, is not what I had expected. Essentially Prof. Helm is advocating for a comparison between Thomas Aquinas and John Calvin. As a quick case study he looks at some of Calvin’s quotes on astronomy and saddles them alongside quotes by Aquinas that are quite similar.
For some time now I have considered myself ‘dogmatically’ Reformed and have had little use for Thomas Aquinas, so this comes as a little bit of a surprise for me. But, when a person of the theological stature of Paul Helm recommends something, I think we should all be quick to hear what he has to say.
Now I am interested in picking up his recent publication that I wasn’t aware of: John Calvin’s Ideas (Oxford University Press, 2004). Who knows, maybe I’ll embark on a love-hate relationship with Aquinas instead of a hate-hate relationship (I picked up this term from Martin Marty who claimed that Luther had a hate-hate relationship with the philosophy of Aristotle).

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Redemptive Movement Hermeneutic

Wayne Grudem’s critique of Bill Webb’s egalitarian hermeneutic given at the Evangelical Theological Society’s meeting in 2003 can be listened to at the Center for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood’s website here.

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The Chalcedon Foundation – What Should We Expect from the Narnia Movie?

Columnist Lee Duigon offers some thoughts and hopes for the recent theatrical release of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. He draws the allegorical connection between Narnia and Christianity, contra the views of many today (including the cast and crew of the movie!).
Duigon asks a good question to those Christians like myself who have seen the movie: “Does it refresh us in spirit? Does it re-energize our connection to Christ — a connection that just might have gotten a little rusty, due to our immersion in this world?”
Having thought about this question for a few moments, I would have to answer in the affirmative. As much as I believe that this story is intended for children, it surely did bring my mind back to the gospel and Jesus Christ.
For instance, when Aslan substituted himself for Edmund and ultimately those of Narnia, I was strongly reminded of Christ’s substitutionary atonement. When Aslan was drawn through the mob amid a barrage of insults and humiliation, I was reminded of Christ’s walk to the Cross on my behalf. When Aslan was shorn, I was reminded of the nakedness of Christ as He hung on that horrid Cross. When the stone table cracked in two, I was reminded of the torn veil in the temple as Christ breathed His last. And when Aslan arose from the slumber of death, I was greatly reminded of Christ’s resurrection, the conquering of death and the triumph of good.
A few days ago Cowboyology posted about the redemptive-historical Christmas. In it he asked whether “Christmas day sermons…will unpack the ‘now-not yet’ of Christ’s kingdom and His Advents.” I wonder the same for those who speak of the Christian significance of this first Narnia movie. Will Christians speak of the reality of “Aslan’s” kingdom and the hope for the final end of all things? Will they preach a defeated “witch” yet warn that there is still yet a consummation and a dawn of a new era? Has the “eschatological rupture” of Aslan’s kingdom been implanted in the minds of those who watch The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe?
I truly hope so.

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Geoff’s Blog

Geoff Thomas pastor of Alfred Place Baptist Church in Aberystwyth, Wales has started a blog! I’m very excited about this and am looking forward to reading what he has to say.

Pastor Thomas is a thoughtful writer and provides poignant critiques of the contemporary church scene. His grasp of theology and church history is wide and he writes in a pastoral tone. All of these traits will contribute to what surely will be a well-read blog.

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