To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, it is because they have no dawn. They will pass through the land hard-pressed and famished, and it will turn out that when they are hungry, they will be enraged and curse their king and their God as they face upward. Then they will look to the earth, and behold, distress and darkness, the gloom of anguish; and they will be driven away into darkness.Isaiah
“Take my ribs, Ruth Bader Ginsburg.” This is how many across the nation have responded to the news that the longtime Supreme Court justice fell in her office Wednesday evening, breaking three ribs. Others have been less charitable.
Justice Ginsburg is a metaphor for American culture. How you reacted to the news of her accident likely reveals your position on today’s highly partisan political spectrum.
“A flaming feminist litigator”
Justice Ginsburg was one of nine women in her class at Harvard Law School. She was the first woman to become a tenured professor at Columbia University Law School and the co-founder of the Women’s Rights Project at the ACLU. As the leader of this project, she successfully argued six landmark cases before the Supreme Court.
President Clinton nominated her to the Supreme Court in 1993; the Senate confirmed her by a ninety-six to three vote. Since that time, she has gained a reputation for personal fortitude. She has yet to miss a day of oral arguments, even while undergoing chemotherapy for pancreatic cancer, recovering from surgery for colon cancer, and grieving the death of her husband in 2010.
Ginsburg has become a “liberal icon” who describes herself as “a flaming feminist litigator.” Her criticism of Donald Trump during the presidential campaign drew applause from his critics and censure from his supporters.
One of the gravest challenges we face
It is tempting to view today’s polarization of the Supreme Court as a necessary reflection of the polarization of our nation. Since we are divided between “red” and “blue” states, rural and urban, liberals and conservatives, it seems fitting that our justices reflect such division. And it seems appropriate that the president should be able to make judicial nominations consistent with his political position since he was elected by the will of the people.
As a very strong pro-life supporter, you might expect me to defend this position since it led to the recent appointments of two conservative justices. But I do not.
In fact, I consider the politicization of the Supreme Court to be one of the gravest challenges our democracy faces.
Unlike every other democracy in the world, America’s federal and Supreme Court justices are given lifetime appointments. Alexander Hamilton, in The Federalist Papers: No. 78, explained the founders’ reasoning. Defending “the permanent tenure of judicial offices,” he stated that “nothing will contribute so much as this to that independent spirit in the judges which must be essential to the faithful performance of so arduous a duty.”
In other words, lifetime appointments are intended to protect the justices from the vagaries of shifting political agendas. This provision has been heavily criticized over the years by those who believe it makes the justices less accountable to the people.
But such accountability is precisely what the founders did not intend.
Decisions that would have shocked the Founders
As I noted yesterday, our foundational declaration that “all men are created equal” was articulated within a Judeo-Christian worldview. This worldview embraces a consensual morality grounded in the realities of absolute truth and objective morality. This commitment to objective truth applies to the US Constitution, a document which I believe its authors intended to be interpreted and applied objectively.
They made provision for amendments as needed but would be shocked to see it treated as a “living document” that can be interpreted and applied according to the changing political and moral beliefs of the day. But this is just how some of our Supreme Court justices view the Constitution.
This approach enabled them to discover a “right to privacy” within the Fourteenth Amendment that they utilized to legalize abortion and same-sex marriage. It is inconceivable to me that the founders would have intended such “rights.” I am not alone in this conviction.
In his dissent on the Obergefell decision legalizing same-sex marriage, Chief Justice Roberts stated: “Five lawyers have closed the debate and enacted their own vision of marriage as a matter of constitutional law.” He suggested to those celebrating the majority’s decision, “Celebrate the availability of new benefits. But do not celebrate the Constitution. It had nothing to do with it.”
Justice Thomas agreed: “The majority invokes our Constitution in the name of a ‘liberty’ that the Framers would not have recognized, to the detriment of the liberty they sought to protect.”
“Sojourners and exiles”
I believe that our Founders intended our judges and justices to interpret and apply the Constitution according to its original intent (a position known as “originalism”).
I am therefore convinced that Roe v. Wade was a grave error, not just because life begins at conception, but because the ruling was based on a flawed “right to privacy” and should be overturned on its legal merits. (See this excellent article by Christianity Today‘s Matt Reynolds for more.) I believe the same is true for Obergefell‘s discovery of a “right” to same-sex marriage.
But since I am not a lawyer but a theologian, I suspect that you are reading this Daily Article not for my legal opinions but for biblical commentary. What I have written to this point is but a long introduction to this fact: this culture is not our home.
In a day when judicial rulings and conventional wisdom are based more on political and personal opinions than objective morality, we can expect cultural chaos to continue. Religious liberty will be protected in some rulings and assailed in others. Biblical values will likely come under escalating opposition as the post-Christian trajectory of our day continues.
“Sojourners and exiles” in this world are to “keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation” (1 Peter 2:11-12). When that day comes, we will be judged not by Supreme Court justices who are fallen like us but by the Supreme Judge of the universe (2 Corinthians 5:10).
Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s fall reminds us of her mortality, and of ours as well.
Are you prepared to meet your Lord?
Deluding Influence So That They Will Believe What Is False
Turning Unbelief Into Belief
2 Thess 2:10-12 …because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. For this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false, in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness.
The anti-Trump, left-wing #CancelKavanaugh protest in Washington, DC, on Thursday tried and convicted President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting women and lying to the Senate Judiciary Committee without any of the Constitutional due processes they claim to want to protect by rejecting the federal judge’s nomination.
Carrying signs and banners describing Kavanaugh as a sexual predator and a drunk and calling for him and the president to be impeached and jailed, protestors chanted “We Do Not Consent” and “We Believe Survivors.”
“We Believe Survivors” buttons were prevalent, a theme that emerged after Christine Blasey Ford accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her decades ago at a high school party.
Her claim came after the judiciary committee heard 30-plus hours of testimony during Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing, resulting in an additional hearing for Ford’s testimony and Kavanaugh’s response to it.
That hearing spurred a seventh FBI background check on Kavanaugh, who has been in public service for decades, and FBI background checks on others Ford claimed were involved in the long-ago incident, including high school friend Mark Judge. Judge has already given two sworn statements under penalty of felony that stated he does not recall the party or Kavanaugh assaulting Ford.
After the final FBI investigation found no corroboration for Ford’s claims, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) on Wednesday launched the final round of the confirmation battle, filing for cloture to ensure a final vote on Kavanaugh’s confirmation by the end of the week.
The organizers of the protest are the same left-wing organizations that have opposed Trump since he was elected in 2016 and are using the ongoing demonstrations to raise funds for their cause and register Democratic voters, including: the George Soros-funded moveon.org; the Women’s March, co-founded by anti-Semite and anti-Israel Linda Sarsour; Planned Parenthood; and Black Lives Matter.
Video also shows protesters chasing and screaming at Sen. John Cornyn Thursday:
ABC News reports that Capitol Police arrested 302 demonstrators today:
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A time when some want to stir up trouble to the point of physical violence and war.
Psalm 62 God Alone a Refuge from Treachery and Oppression
1 My soul waits in silence for God only; From Him is my salvation.
2 He only is my rock and my salvation, My stronghold; I shall not be greatly shaken.
3 How long will you assail a man, That you may murder him, all of you, Like a leaning wall, like a tottering fence?
4 They have counseled only to thrust him down from his high position; They delight in falsehood; They bless with their mouth, But inwardly they curse. Selah.
5 My soul, wait in silence for God only, For my hope is from Him.
6 He only is my rock and my salvation, My stronghold; I shall not be shaken.
7 On God my salvation and my glory rest; The rock of my strength, my refuge is in God.
8 Trust in Him at all times, O people; Pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us. Selah.
9 Men of low degree are only vanity and men of rank are a lie; In the balances they go up; They are together lighter than breath.
10 Do not trust in oppression And do not vainly hope in robbery; If riches increase, do not set your heart upon them.
11 Once God has spoken; Twice I have heard this: That power belongs to God;
12 And lovingkindness is Yours, O Lord, For You recompense a man according to his work.
I put the post below on Facebook but the photo now says…
Remember Vietnam? Remember the images that got under the countries skin to rise up enough resistance to end the bloodshed?
That will never happen on Facebook will it?
It is going to be up to us. Therefore, I reposted this to my blog and add some content.
I cannot stop here.
To be contextualized from Nehemiah’s great prayer after he heard of the devastation of his people.