Planned Parenthood Cooperates with Child Sex Trafficking

If you have been involved with the fight to save the unborn from abortion for any length of time, you are no doubt familiar with the treachery of Planned Parenthood. Next to the current U.S. President Barack Obama, Planned Parenthood is North America’s most influential pro-abortion voice, and certainly the largest abortion provider. Over the last couple of years, there have been numerous exposées which show the illegal activity that Planned Parenthood has been complicit in. Again, for any who pro-life advocates who have had significant contact with Planned Parenthood in the past, this will come as no surprise.

Today, Live Action, a youth-led pro-life movement has released their latest undercover video which shows clearly that Planned Parenthood knows few boundaries when it comes to helping to kill the unborn. In the video, a couple walk into a Planned Parenthood center and identify themselves as a pimp and one of his prostitutes, who are engaged in trafficking girls as young as 14 and 15 years old for sex. When the Planned Parenthood employee learns of this, she is more than happy to help the pimp in “managing” his girls and even, if need be, providing abortions for these teenage girls by helping him to avoid legal obstacles.

Now, let me be clear about a few things for those who watch the video. Firstly, while I believe that the effects that this video will bring will be entirely good, we must be careful, as we fight for the lives of the unborn (or anyone for that matter), that we use honest means to do so. I applaud the bravery and the intentions of those from Live Action. However, as Christians we cannot engage in deceiving or lying about things in order to achieve goals that will be God-glorifying.

Secondly, from my own interactions with Planned Parenthood, I have little doubt that the organization will be merciless toward this employee. Do not misunderstand me, because I am not saying that she is guilt free in any way. She has, no doubt, sent many babies to their death and she clearly has no concern for children who are enslaved to the sex trade. Nevertheless, it is very likely that she will be simply be fired in order that Planned Parenthood can “save face.” (In fact, I have just learned that Planned Parenthood is already saying that she did not act in accordance with their policy, thus, her demise is likely already certain.) Despite the atrocities that she has been involved in, we must pray for her and that she will see Planned Parenthood for who they really are and that her heart will be turned to saving lives instead of killing them. We must remember that, apart from God’s grace, we would do things much worse than she.

Thirdly, lest anyone think that this worker was not educated on proper procedure with Planned Parenthood, it must be stated that all Planned Parenthood workers are extremely well-trained. The organization is very protective and they also know that, in order to continue aborting babies, they must have a good public persona. Every worker is aware of this and knows the details, loopholes (as can be seen in the video), and procedures in order to keep the organization running as effectively as it does. Do not think for a moment that this one employee was uninformed or any different from other Planned Parenthood employees.

And remember that what is shown in this video is not an isolated case. Please check out the Live Action website to see more of what goes on.

On a final note, and of importance, if you want to help expose and defund Planned Parenthood, an organization that receives more than $300 million in tax-payer funds every year? Join a new group called Expose Planned Parenthood on a webcast TONIGHT at 8:30PM Eastern. CLICK HERE for the webcast and then checkout their website.

* Please take a few minutes to arm yourself for presenting a good argument against abortion by visiting Scott Klusendorf’s website, especially his excellent article on “How to Defend Your Pro-Life Views in 5 Minutes or Less.” I have used Scott’s S.L.E.D. argument for years as a powerful and convincing argument against the most staunch and professional pro-abortion defenders, from the person on the street to university professors and debaters.

Putting My Teeth to Death

I went to the dentist yesterday after they had called and called and called me. They kept telling me that I needed to have a complete exam done because it had been. . . oh, I don’t know. . . years. I don’t really have reason to have an exam because I know that my teeth are fine. A dentist told me years ago that I had “good saliva” and so I am one of those blessed individuals who may never really have to worry about my teeth. However, I figured that it had been a while and I should go so that the dental industry didn’t collapse for want of money. I lay in that chair with the funky sunglasses on and as the dentist was looking at me she asked, “Do you floss?” I said, “No. Never.” She said, “Well. . . you should.” I asked, “Why? Is there a problem?” She paused and said, “Nooo.” I think that we both knew that I would ignore her advice, at least until some day when they actually find a problem. No cavities, good saliva, no worries. That’s my mindset. And, for some reason, when I leave it always makes me feel like I won and the dentist lost. I still feel like that, even as I write this. I feel really proud of my superior oral hygiene, like Superman teeth, so that I don’t even really have to try. . . Like my teeth, in some way, convey that I’m not just your ordinary guy.

As I was laying in the chair waiting for the doc, I noticed a little article on the cork board with a bunch of before and after teeth pictures. I don’t know whose teeth are in the “before” pictures, but I am quite certain that the “after” pictures are not of the same person’s teeth. Anyway, the title of the article was “Make a statement with porcelain veneers.” I got up from the chair to read it and near the beginning, the article said, “Whatever your trademark, exquisite porcelain veneers are all about you.” Now, in fairness, I’m doubtful that those writing this ad-disguised-as-an-article (the kind of which are plastered all over dentist offices, I find) is intentionally seeking to undermine what God wants from us. Still, though, this single line reminded me of what drives so much of our culture. And, as much as I really don’t care about how my teeth look as long as they’re functioning properly, I have to admit that I did imagine for a few seconds of how a nicer smile might earn me a bit more respect and admiration from people (something that I desperately could use). I do believe that the ad is designed to bring the reader back to a me-centered mindset, so that we might want to feel improved and to appear better than the average Joe or Jill. I know this because the little article began with appeals to attain the level of “glitz” or “glamour” of rock divas or Hollywood icons.

As humans, we were not created to have these sorts of desires or feelings, originally. (By “originally,” I mean as God first created us.) Our self-centered sinful state leads us to seek this kind of significance in the eyes of others, when we shouldn’t even really be seeking significance in the eyes of anyone. I would even argue that we shouldn’t be seeking significance in the eyes of God! The only thing that we should be, and need to be, seeking is the magnification and glorification of God in our lives and the lives of those around us. Reading this little ad, saying “exquisite porcelain veneers are all about you” immediately made me think of a quote I read last week from the entry on “faith” (by Rudolf Bultmann of all people, but I still think he got it right on this one) in the Exegetical Dictionary of the New Testament. It said, “Faith is the manner of life of the man who is crucified with Christ, who can no longer live as I, but who lives in Christ.” Bang on. When we strive for the life of faith, what are not striving to display is ourselves in an ostentatious way, or even a subtly better way. Why? Because there should be no I to display. Now, in reality, there is an I, but God’s design for us is that it does not display itself, but strives to display only glory of the God who made that I. You and I were created to reflect His glory. . . To reflect it to each other, to His creation, but most of all we were created to reflect His glory that is in us back to Him, so that He might be able to gaze upon the work that He has done in us and be pleased. Because there is only one smile that we should really want to see–His smile. And we will see it when He sees Himself in us.

Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles and run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith. (Hb 12:1b-2a)

An Insider’s Look at Planned Parenthood

For most people who have made it past the womb, abortion is not really an issue. Having served as the President of a local Pro-Life organization in my own city, I can say that it was extremely disheartening to see how few of my fellow Christians genuinely cared about the slaughter of so many innocents. In fact, the group was comprised almost exclusively of Roman Catholics, and my many petitions for my Evangelical brothers and sisters to join in the fight against the massive pro-abortion movement was futile. The lip service that was paid to these hundreds of thousands of children that are slaughtered every year, when no real heart for them existed, was nearly as disgusting as the act of abortion itself. This is why abortion statistics are where they are today while the performance of abortion has become a cultural norm.

In Albert Mohler’s blog post today he notes some important American statistics. On January 6th, 2011, the New York Times reported that nearly 40% of all pregnancies are aborted in New York City. Amongst the African-American community in the city, 60% of all babies are aborted, which is an atrocious statistic and makes one wonder why African-American religious leaders are saying nothing about the issue. (Well, I suppose we don’t need to wonder. The fact is that they, like most Christians, just don’t care.) The Guttmacher Institute recently released the statistic that, nationally, 22% of all babies end up in the garbage can. And in 2008, the last year that full abortion numbers were released, 1.2 million babies were aborted. Continue reading

Is ‘Christianophobia’ a Problem?

Throughout each day I survey a number of news sites to try to keep on top of whatever is developing of importance in the world. Usually, I am amazed at what makes it into the news when so many other either wonderful or tragic things may be happening in the world. Each day one website has a poll and today’s had the above title. The options were: (1) Yes, (2) No, (3) That’s ridiculous, and (4) No idea. When you cast your vote, the results page pops up. I voted “Yes” and was surprised to see that the overwhelming vote was Yes. (44% Yes, 13% No, 30% That’s ridiculous, 13% No idea.) Knowing that the majority of those voting were likely not Christian, at least in the sense of someone who has repented of sin, trusted in Christ and seeks His will and assistance each day, I remain a bit puzzled as to why so many voted “Yes.” At the same time, I’m suppose that I’m glad that most answered this way, because it means that I might have a bit more of a receptive audience if seeking to share the Gospel. On the other hand, it may simply mean that those same people will simply be polite when I first begin to speak about Christ to them.

In reality, many of those who had voted “Yes” may change their vote if we begin to share the full Gospel with them. While I have experienced many people who don’t mind if I begin to talk with them about Jesus Christ, some get their back up a bit when we bring up the issue of their sin. Still, however, I am always amazed at how open people are when such a personal and convicting topic is broached. I truly believe that most, after we have finished sharing Gospel with them, will continue to think about the conversation for some time, so long as our message entails the fact that we are sinners who are in great trouble with an angered God, and not just the fact that “God loves us and has a wonderful plan for our lives.” Continue reading

Are You a Kenotic Christologian?

Okay, so this picture does look a little bit cheesy. But is it accurate? Or have Christians misunderstood what Jesus was really capable of? When the Word became flesh, did the God-man, Jesus, still have all of the attributes He had before?

This debate is not new, but it goes back about 150 years, likely originating with a German theologian named Gottfried Thomasius. The new idea of kenosis–that when the Word was made incarnate and Christ was born, that He gave up all of His divine attributes and yet remained God–was bandied about for about 60 years. The last major kenosis proponent was Hugh Ross Mackintosh who posited that Christ could not have actually remained God if He gave up his attributes, so instead he forfeited them in the sense that, even though he still had all the attributes, he did not avail himself of any of them while he was incarnate (was a man). After Mackintosh the notion of kenosis (literally meaning “emptying”, from Philippians 2:7) was put on the back burner and all but forgotten. Recently, however, some theologians have picked up the idea again and are discussing it as being an answer to the issue that we face when we really think about how it was that Christ could be fully man and fully God. Many would say that it is a divine mystery that lies beyond human comprehension. Others would say that it can be reconciled and kenosis theory provides the answer to it.

Of course, traditional Christianity has always argued that Christ possessed all of the attributes of a man as well as all of the attributes of God and that, even while he was a man, he used them (e.g., to sustain the universe, know the thoughts of the Pharisees and disciples, see Nathanael under the fig tree while he wasn’t with him, etc.).

The paradox is a lot older than when Thomasius began to discuss it, but can be found being discussed in the early church Fathers. At the Council of Chalcedon in A.D. 451 the issues had come to a head after several theories had been advanced to resolve the paradox. The Council ruled out many theories because they conflicted with what they saw in Scripture, but the wisdom of the Fathers culminated in a statement basically saying that the paradox cannot be resolved, but that we can affirm that Christ possesses and exercises all of the attributes, abilities and limitations of a man while at the same time possessing and exercising all of the attributes that He had always had as the Word.

What would you say?

The Second Most Important Book in the World

Patrick Johnstone, Jason Mandryk and his team at Operation Mobilisation undoubtedly jumped for joy when their book was published. The book was the result of thousands of hours of detailed research, sifting through data, field reports and who knows what else to create what was one of the most influential books in the history of the world. That book was the 6th edition of Operation World (Amazon.com list page). Operation World has had a glorious history. I have every confidence that God has used this little book to change the world. As Samuel Zwemer once said, “The history of missions is the history of answered prayer.”

The book is simply a book of data. It gives the breakdown of every country in the world’s population, geographical, social and political data with great precision. All of this is merely interesting information, but also what you can likely find on the internet via the CIA World Factbook or the like. What makes Operation World so unique is that, not only does it present this data, but it presents a breakdown a fairly comprehensive picture of religious and spiritual facts of each of those countries, far more accurate and comprehensive that any other source that you will find online, or in almost any library. But perhaps the most valuable thing that Operation World contains is a list of important “Challenges for Prayer” (as well as an encouraging list of “Answers to Prayer,” in order that God may receive the praise that is due His name) for each country. What greater resource, other than Scripture itself, could a praying Christian ask for when it comes to praying for the nations? Not much. Continue reading

Bad News for Zondervan and the NIV

A few weeks ago I posted my first response to the release of the NIV 2011. I noticed today that the CBMW (The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood) released their own response to the online release of the NIV 2011. The CBMW is a group of high-level Evangelical Christian scholars who are concerned to retain biblical definitions of manhood and womanhood. Thus, their opinion of the NIV 2011 is very much sought after and there can be little doubt that the CBT (Committee on Bible Translation, funded by Zondervan and Biblica), who are responsible for the translation of the NIV 2011, are desperate for their vote of confidence in order that Evangelical churches embrace the new translation, especially after the TNIV disaster of 2002. After all, without the Evangelical audience, the new translation runs the great risk of being lost in obscurity since Evangelicals are generally the only group to be involved in serious Bible purchasing and, thus, funding the translation work. Furthermore, Zondervan’s CEO, Moe Girkins, has a lot riding on this as well, hoping that Zondervan will be able to restore the confidence of Evangelicals in the once great publisher of fine Christian material and partnering producer of the very excellent 1978 and 1984 NIV.

The news is not good for the CBT, however, as the CBMW has refused their vote of confidence to the NIV 2011, as you can read here. I am quite certain that those who have devoted countless hours to the translation, including Douglas Moo who was the chair of the translation committee, will be disappointed. However, I also have little doubt that they will respect greatly the opinion of the scholars of CBMW. At the end of the day, I believe that the concerns of the CBMW are very legitimate. Even for those who are egalitarian in their views, their must be agreement when it comes to the lack of accuracy of translation exhibited in many texts of the TNIV and the NIV 2011 and preserving of “soulful” rhetoric in certain texts (e.g., Psalm 23:4).

What does this mean for the NIV 2011? Well, we will have to wait and see. I suspect that sales will ride largely on two factors: firstly, that many will buy the new NIV not realizing that there has been any change, and, secondly, others will buy it aware of the changes but with a sentimental attachment to the New International Version. For conservative Evangelicals, especially of the younger and more zealous crowd, I believe that Crossway has the answer in the ESV.

Before I end this post, one more thing is important to remember as Christians: While there is room for disagreement over the quality of translation of the NIV 2011 and other versions, there is no room for allowing it to cause a breach in the unity of Christian brothers and sisters and their love for one another. Let me never be misunderstood as making this some sort of dividing line between the faithful and the unfaithful.