As I mentioned earlier in another post below this one, this article is only for those that believe that the Bible IS the word of GOD. Anyway, the good things and structure (The Bible) available to everyone can help you as an individual to decide what is right and what is obviously wrong. The rest of the various religions, teachings, etc is Mankind messing with your mind...KIM
Is There a Sound Basis for Your Beliefs?
Your Right to Believe
You probably cherish your right to believe whatever you wish to believe. So does almost everyone else. By exercising this right, earth's six billion inhabitants have produced an amazing diversity of beliefs. Like the variations in color, shape, texture, taste, smell, and sound that we find in creation, differing beliefs often add interest, excitement, and enjoyment to life. Such variety can, indeed, be the spice of life.—Psalm 104:24.
BUT there is a need for caution. Some beliefs are not only different but also dangerous. Early in the 20th century, for example, some people came to believe that Jews and Freemasons had plans to "disrupt Christian civilization and erect a world state under their joint rule." One source of this belief was an anti-Semitic tract entitled Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion. The tract alleged that the plans included advocating excessive taxation, promoting armament production, encouraging giant monopolies so that 'Gentile wealth could be destroyed in one blow.' Allegations also included manipulating the education system so as to 'turn Gentiles into unthinking beasts,' and even constructing underground railways to join capital cities so that the Jewish elders could 'quell any opposers by blowing them sky-high.'
These, of course, were lies—designed to inflame anti-Semitic feelings. 'This preposterous fiction,' says Mark Jones of the British Museum, 'spread abroad from Russia,' where it first appeared in a newspaper article in 1903. It reached The Times of London on May 8, 1920. More than a year later, The Times exposed the document as a fake. In the meantime, the damage had been done. 'Lies like these,' says Jones, 'are hard to suppress.' Once people accept them, they produce some very jaundiced, poisonous, and dangerous beliefs—often with disastrous consequences, as the history of the 20th century has shown.—Proverbs 6:16-19.
Belief Versus Truth
Of course, it does not take deliberate lies to develop mistaken beliefs. At times, we just misread things. How many people have met untimely deaths doing something they believed was right? Then again, often we believe a thing simply because we want to believe it. One professor says that even scientists "often fall in love with their own constructions." Their beliefs becloud their critical judgment. Then they may spend a lifetime in vain trying to shore up mistaken beliefs.—Jeremiah 17:9.
Similar things have happened with religious beliefs—where immense contradictions exist. (1 Timothy 4:1; 2 Timothy 4:3, 4) One man has deep faith in God. Another says that the man is only "weaving faith out of moonshine." One maintains that you have an immortal soul that survives death. Another believes that when you die you cease to exist, totally and completely. Obviously, conflicting beliefs like these cannot all be true. Is it not the course of wisdom, then, to make sure that what you believe actually is true and not simply what you want to believe? (Proverbs 1:5)
Why Do You Believe What You Believe?
To believe has been defined as "to accept as true, genuine, or real." The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights enshrines every person's "right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion." This right includes the freedom "to change his religion or belief" if he wants to do so.
WHY, though, would anyone want to change his religion or belief? "I have my own beliefs, and I am happy with them," is the commonly expressed view. Many feel that even mistaken beliefs cause little harm to anyone. Someone who believes that the earth is flat, for example, is not likely to hurt himself or anyone else. "We should just agree to differ," some say. Is that always wise? Would a doctor simply agree to differ if one of his colleagues continued to believe he could go straight from handling dead bodies in a morgue to examining sick patients in a hospital ward?
When it comes to religion, mistaken beliefs have historically caused great harm. Think of the horrors that resulted when religious leaders "inspired Christian zealots to pitiless violence" during the so-called Holy Crusades of the Middle Ages. Or think of the modern-day "Christian" gunmen in a recent civil war who, "just like medieval warriors who had saints' names on their sword hilts, taped pictures of the Virgin to their rifle butts." All these zealots believed that they were right. Yet, obviously in these and other religious struggles and fights, something was terribly wrong.
Why is there so much confusion and conflict? The Bible's answer is that Satan the Devil is "misleading the entire inhabited earth." (Revelation 12:9; 2 Corinthians 4:4; 11:3) The apostle Paul warned that many religious people would, sadly, be "doomed to perish" because they would be deceived by Satan, who would "produce miracles and wonders calculated to deceive." Such ones, said Paul, would "shut their minds to the love of truth which could have saved them" and would thus be 'deluded into believing what is a lie.' (2 Thessalonians 2:9-12, The New Testament, by William Barclay) How can you minimize the possibility of believing a lie? Why, in fact, do you believe the way you do?
Brought Up to Believe It?
Perhaps you have been brought up in the beliefs of your family. That may well be a good thing. God wants parents to teach their children. (Deuteronomy 6:4-9; 11:18-21) The young man Timothy, for example, benefited greatly from listening to his mother and grandmother. (2 Timothy 1:5; 3:14, 15) The Scriptures encourage respect for what parents believe. (Proverbs 1:8; Ephesians 6:1) But did your Creator mean for you to believe things simply because your parents believe them? Unthinking adherence to what previous generations believed and did can, in fact, be dangerous.—Psalm 78:8; Amos 2:4.
A Samaritan woman who met Jesus Christ had been brought up to believe in her Samaritan religion. (John 4:20) Jesus respected her freedom to choose what she wanted to believe, but he also pointed out to her: "You worship what you do not know." Many of her religious beliefs were, in fact, mistaken, and he told her that she would have to make changes in her beliefs if she was going to worship God acceptably—"with spirit and truth." Rather than cling to what were no doubt cherished beliefs, she and others like her would, in time, have to become "obedient to the faith" revealed through Jesus Christ.—John 4:21-24, 39-41; Acts 6:7.
Educated to Believe It?
Many teachers and authorities in specialized fields of knowledge deserve great respect. Yet, history is littered with examples of renowned teachers who were absolutely wrong. For example, regarding two books on scientific matters written by Greek philosopher Aristotle, historian Bertrand Russell stated that "hardly a sentence in either can be accepted in the light of modern science." Even modern-day authorities often get things drastically wrong. "Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible," was the confident assertion of British scientist Lord Kelvin in 1895. A wise person, therefore, does not blindly believe that something is true simply because some authoritative teacher says it is.—Psalm 146:3.
The same caution is needed when it comes to religious education. The apostle Paul was well-educated by his religious teachers and was extremely "zealous for the traditions of [his] fathers." His zeal for the traditional beliefs of his ancestors, however, actually created problems for him. It led to his "persecuting the congregation of God and devastating it." (Galatians 1:13, 14; John 16:2, 3) Worse still, for a long time, Paul kept "kicking against the goads," resisting the influences that should have led him to believe in Jesus Christ. It required a dramatic intervention by Jesus himself to move Paul to adjust his beliefs.—Acts 9:1-6; 26:14.
Influenced by the Media?
Maybe the media have greatly influenced your beliefs. Most people are glad that there is freedom of speech in the media, giving them access to information that can be useful. However, there are powerful forces that can and frequently do manipulate the media. What is often presented is biased information that can insidiously affect your thinking.
In addition, to appeal to or to attract a larger audience, the media tend to give publicity to what is sensational and unconventional. What could hardly be said or printed for public consumption just a few years ago has become commonplace today. Slowly but surely, established standards of behavior are attacked and whittled away. People's thinking is gradually becoming distorted. They begin to believe that "good is bad and bad is good."—Isaiah 5:20; 1 Corinthians 6:9, 10.
Finding a Sound Basis for Belief
Building on the ideas and philosophies of men is like building on sand. (Matthew 7:26; 1 Corinthians 1:19, 20) On what, then, can you confidently base your beliefs? Since God has given you intellectual capacity to investigate the world around you and to ask questions concerning spiritual matters, does it not make sense that he would also provide the means to get accurate answers to your questions? (1 John 5:20) Yes, of course he would! How, though, can you establish what is true, genuine, or real in matters of worship? We have no hesitation in saying that God's Word, the Bible, provides the only basis for doing this.—John 17:17; 2 Timothy 3:16, 17.
"But wait," someone will say, "is it not the very ones who have the Bible who have caused the most conflict and confusion in world affairs?" Well, it is true that religious leaders who claim to follow the Bible have produced many confusing and conflicting ideas. This is because they have not, in fact, based their beliefs on the Bible. The apostle Peter describes them as "false prophets" and "false teachers" who would create "destructive sects." As a consequence of their activities, says Peter, "the way of the truth will be spoken of abusively." (2 Peter 2:1, 2) Still, writes Peter, "we have the prophetic word made more sure; and you are doing well in paying attention to it as to a lamp shining in a dark place."—2 Peter 1:19; Psalm 119:105.
The Bible encourages us to check our beliefs against what it teaches. (1 John 4:1) So be like the noble-minded Beroeans. 'Carefully examine the Scriptures daily' before you decide what to believe. (Acts 17:11) Of course, it is your decision as to what you want to believe. However, it is the course of wisdom to make sure that your beliefs are shaped, not by human wisdom and desires, but, rather, by God's revealed Word of truth.—1 Thessalonians 2:13; 5:21.
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I believe you are full of crap.Just MY belief.
"Gunny" would be nice to see you use your real name...Thanks!
I agree with Gunny. What a waste of space!
...when the focus and topic causes you to, shall we say, ...THINK a little? LOL
Take care and good luck!
Yes,JJ here,but whats it matter? Only my mom and old lady call me by my real name. And that's only when there's a full moon.If you know what I mean.
Many things in the world today are blamed on religious extremists. That is true to a point, but you have to break down what is truly meant by "religious extremist".
In my opinion, the religious extremists or fundamentalists shall we say..are driven by their cultural backgrounds that include being taught at a very young age that they shall find eternal life by means of being a martyr, killing those who pray to a different god than their own, and allow societies to become civilized.
Some say that the current war we are in is a religious war, and I've probably been guilty of saying that myself in the past. The one thing I have now came to realize is that most of what is going on in the world today may be construed as a "religious war", when in all actually, it is caused from groups that have abandoned Gods ways and let their societies define what they need to do to support this "false" religion.
The results of this are seen everyday in the ways of suicide bombings, disregard for human life, and an all out war on societies that don't walk the same line as they do.
I've never been one much for religion until recently. I've been taking some classes at the local church to become a memeber, and will be baptised soon and so fourth..(about time to at 31 years old!)
What I've found by going to church on a regular basis, is a group of people that not only would give you the shirt off of their back, but a group that welcomes peace, traditional values, and an all out concern for their neighbors in many ways.
It has been a very uplifting experience for me personally. The biggest change is that I've become a lot more at peace with myself, and it's definitely helped me try to become a better person all around.
The reason I've said all of this, is for the simple reason that if people find religion, it doesn't matter which denomination they choose, but rather what it does for the individual to make them a better person and a better member of society.
If a religion preaches violence and disregard for life, it stemmed from a belief that has wandered off of the path of what is right, so we find ourselves not in a religious war, but rather a war of christian and god fearing people vs a group of people where God has not been allowed into their lives.
Glad to hear that you are taking seriously the word of God (The Bible). My original post should be able to help you and guide you through a few "ify" parts when it comes to any particular religious practice or belief.
You no doubt will be taken to task for this stance. But hang in there and ASK GOD for guidance and help. The biggest problem among many people that don't or won't believe is that they will not humble themselves before GOD. Of course when you pray to GOD, this is all done in private and not in front of a group of people making a showy display of ones' self. This of course is private prayer and not ment for any other purpose.
Wishing you the best...KIM
It has always been this way and will always be that way until the Second Coming. You will notice that one of the few things my Protestant brothers and sisters can agree on among themselves is their mutual hatred for the True Church from which they came from and to which they owe their gratitude for keeping the Bible alive during centuries of persecution. Naturally they will say it is not hatred but it is. How sad when so much of one's religion is spent on asserting its identity not on what is positive but on something negative and antagonistic. Seems like such a waste of time, and it is. For me I would die for my faith in Christ and His church before I recanted a word; come and get me, my full name and address is known, but come well armed.
The Rich that posted above was not me.
I totally agree with what you have here.
Search the Scriptures daily...I love that!
I feel like I need to respond, as one of those Protestant brothers.
I don't hate the Catholic Church... I just don't agree with a lot of its teachings. My family still belongs to the Catholic Church back home... my wife's family belongs to the same church... and I have a number of born again friends from college that belong to Catholic congregations.
You and I have never spoken, that I am aware of. But I do not doubt the sincerity of your convictions nor where you stand with the Lord.
As a Christian, father and elementary teacher, I really don't care for the words hate or hatred... they convey a very extreme feeling. And they certainly do not describe my feelings for the Catholic Church nor its members.
Have a terrific evening... everyone. :-)
Kim, a very nice post... which I have to admit is odd. I find I disagree with things you post far more than I agree, though your posts are always well written.
The book "23 Minutes in hell" and "90 Minutes in heaven" should be read by everyone. The consequences of eternity are to big to gamble on. Get informed. If we Christians are wrong, then you will have the last laugh as we rot in the ground with ya. However, if we are correct, and you are wrong... well I don't wish that on anyone. Get the two books mentioned above and then read the Bible before you discredit it. I find it amazing that almost 100% of the folks who reject Christianity have done so without ever having read the entire Bible.
Sorry for using the word hate in that post, I would back off from that word on reflection. Admit that for many sad to say its true. It is to easy for me to get upset esp. when my faith attacked with distortions and down right lies. Thanks for your posts Terry.
Not a problem! And I understand wanting to stand your ground- yet another topic found quite a bit throughout the Bible... but I will leave it at that. I do have to say, and maybe this is beating a dead horse, that I completely agree with what Rich was doing with his original post: getting the word out to people who honestly, really truly are still searching or haven't thought about it. That's something we all probably need to do more. I am sure that in your own way you do the same thing- strong convictions are seldom silent. Rich was willing to post here, which- while it might not appeal to some- certainly is a courageous thing to do. Ditto others who are willing to share their faith in the face of so many unknown people.
Anyhow... time to log off and go check the mail, pick up my beautiful wife from work, etc; Until later... have a terrific evening.
P.S. Dave T- Who is the author of the book you mentioned? And I have often had the same thought you posted.
Teaching the children a belief is encouraged and well endorsed by all parents, unless it is of a different denomination that is not theirs. Bible stories and lessons are invaluable. But where do they go wrong? Is it when teachings become distorted by men on missions? Men of the cloth that bend and spin teachings just to get folks to the alter? Some beliefs are just tradition. For instance, Baby's need to be Baptized when there are no accounts of baby's in the Bible being baptized at all. Then some teach that you need to be dipped vs. sprinkled. Teachings become distorted when well meaning Christians, author commentaries on what they believe the Bible says. Commentaries are just that, a mans comments, nothing more. I have heard it said that religion is mans poor, weak, inept attempt to please God. Lessons in the Bible are clear enough to read and gain a belief in God, spinning the Bible to make a sermon isn't needed. So, if every denomination spins it to fit their beliefs, where is the common ground that will unify the Church? It is funny how we all believe in the work of the cross, no arguments there, but before and after the cross, very few are on the same page. Therefore, who has a sound basis for a belief, and who doesn't? Christians are so un-united, that they we argue amongst themselves constantly. It is very hard to believe that any of us go it together when it divides us so.
That is why I do not listen to man any more. If the Holy Spirit tells me to do something, I do it. That's how I roll.
It's quite unlikely that I'll be reading through your posts for guidance - no offense.
I was merely stating what was on my mind, and if I feel I need some guidance, I know where to go.
Have a nice evening and a profitable rest of the week!
You have some good thoughts posted above. And I think it's something I have alluded to in other posts on recent threads. It is amazing how we can agree that salvation comes through acceptance of Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, that He was the son of God and died for our sins. And that through that acceptance our lives are changed. So many of us can agree on that and then dissension through different denominations enters the picture. That was kind of my thought when I left a post about how scripture urges unity even when we are divided by details.
To use one of your examples: The Catholic Church and infant baptism. I personally have an issue with that. It is clear in scripture that baptism was not treated that way at the time of Christ. Baptism comes after the decision to accept Christ- not when someone makes that choice for you. My mom went into a tizzy when she found out I planned to be baptized after I accepted Christ (age 19). So that is one issue I have with the Catholic Church.
That is not to say that there are not people in the Catholic Church who are saved, who made the personal decision on which Christianity is based and what its followers believe. I know there are believers in the Catholic Church. I know there are believers in all denominations, just as there are those in all denominations who are going through the motions or haven't fully committed in the their hearts to Christ. I guess I'm getting long winded again, but ultimately it is God who knows our hearts, as far as if we really are living our lives for Christ. And frankly? It's OK to not agree on the details (hence the scripture reference I had from Romans about still loving and supporting other believers and not putting obstacles in each others' way). I can have a brother (or sister) in Christ who disagrees with me on the details. But if I know that their heart belongs to Christ and they live for Him, I need to have some sense of unity, some common ground based on that and NOT let differences drag it down. IMHO...
By the same token I understand and agree with what Rich has said that seems to have gotten so many stirred up, regarding his burning house example. We do have an obligation to get the message out there- that much is scriptural and comes with accepting a life in Christ. I applaud people like Rich and Kim and anyone who does- with a sincere heart- follow through, born of love for their Lord, on the obligations of their decision.
Last example, and perhaps this will draw howls of protest. I have a good friend, a former co-worker, who is one of the best people I know. He is a born again believer, someone whose faith runs deep. I have heard his testimony and how Christ delivered him from the life he was living (which was very ungodly indeed). He is never shy about sharing his testimony and message. He is also very tolerant of the differing viewpoints of other believers. He's just a real solid person and brother and it is a great blessing that I can call him friend. Oh, and his church? Latter Day Saints... he's a mormon.
Rich is very right about the only way to salvation... it can only come through Jesus Christ. Many others have posted in support of or against things Rich has said, but to my ears, many of those things involve details after the fact of salvation. We can disagree and still find common ground, a unity, as brothers and sisters in Christ. We, as brothers and sisters can be found in all denominations. And in the end only God truly knows our hearts and He alone will be the judge of who we say we are.
Now... shake off that sleep (as I have managed to induce), get a cup of java and go work on a fish or a deer or something.
To one and all... have a fabulous Wednesday. And God's blessing on all of you, wherever you are.
I cannot know a person's heart. Only God can do that. But we can choose to believe someone is also a believer, based on their words and actions.
"But if I know that their heart belongs to Christ and they live for Him..."
I posted that above and the fact is, I cannot know for sure a person's heart. That belongs to God alone. I can watch how a person acts and listen to what a person says and choose to believe that they are sincerely living for Christ.
Starting to stir again. Wondering how we could tie all of this into a taxidermy subject?...Naw! Better keep all of this seperate!
You know... if you hit the button at the top of the catagories menu this IS what it says after Current Events...
CURRENT EVENTS -- Discussions on politics and issues NOT directly related to the taxidermy industry
Food for thought for those who post on threads on this particular forum who ask incredulously what this or that has to do with taxidermy.
And Kim... please be assured I was not trying to stir a pot. Actually the opposite has been on my heart of late.
...I'm busy putting together another post on salvation, infant baptism, etc...Should it be here since we are on the subject?
90 Minutes in Heaven: A True Story of Death & Life (Paperback)
by Don Piper, Cecil Murphey
23 Minutes in Hell by Bill Wiese
Two good books that show God's grace and the consequences of rejecting that grace.
My belief is below and makes the most sense to me being short, factual and sweet! I could of made a really long post but, why? You either believe what is written in the Bible or you don't. That is pretty simple logic for those willing to do the research and humble themselves before GOD.
After you have made your dedication to God, you should be baptized. (Matthew 28:19, 20) Baptism lets everyone know that you have dedicated yourself to (GOD) Jehovah. So baptism is only for those who are old enough to make a decision to serve God. When a person is baptized, his whole body should be put under the water momentarily.—Mark 1:9, 10; Acts 8:36.
Once again I agree with you. The key for me is it says that once I make a decision to dedicate my life to God (through accepting Christ as my Lord and Saviour), not someone making that decision for me.
BUT... (and no this has nothing to do with your post about what you how you interpret baptism)... that notwithstanding, I want to reiterate what I've said in other threads and posts: there are believers in many denominations. Just because you may not see a particular issue exactly as I see it does not mean I am challenging your their salvation. :-)
To everyone, a pleasant evening and God bless. The thread at the top right now from Bill at Hog Heaven made me laugh remembering a Rodney Dangerfield line about going to boxing match and a hockey game broke out.
Dave T... Thanks for the information! :-)
Stay cool, it has been hot in Colorado and I got an itchy trigger finger... got to head out hunting this year...somewhere over the rainbow...LOL
While many of you down yonder have had record highs (my family is in central Kansas), we have had a much cooler than normal summer here (SW Alaska). Once in a while we wander into the mid 60's on a sunny day. A very few times we have broken 70. But we have had a lot of mid to high 50 summer days as well.
Good luck with that trigger finger. Hunting is always good for what ails you (another humble opinion).
Was wondering your thoughts and any observations within the religious community in your area?
Some supporting documents can be found here: http://www.infowars.com/images2/ps/pastor_fema_docs.pdf
A LITTLE PREVIEW OF THE VERY NEAR FUTURE
FEMA Plan To Use Pastors as Pacifiers in Preparation For Martial Law
Nationwide initiative trains volunteers to teach congregations to "obey the government" during seizure of guns, property, forced inoculations and forced relocation
Paul Joseph Watson/Prison Planet.com | May 24 2006
A Pastor has come forward to blow the whistle on a nationwide FEMA program which is training Pastors and other religious representatives to become secret police enforcers who teach their congregations to "obey the government" in preparation for a declaration of martial law, property and firearm seizures, and forced relocation.
In March of this year the Pastor, who we shall refer to as Pastor Revere, was invited to attend a meeting of his local FEMA chapter which circulated around preparedness for a potential bio-terrorist attack, any natural disaster or a nationally declared emergency.
The FEMA directors told the Pastors that attended that it was their job to help implement FEMA and Homeland Security directives in anticipation of any of these eventualities. The first directive was for Pastors to preach to their congregations Romans 13, the often taken out of context bible passage that was used by Hitler to hoodwink Christians into supporting him, in order to teach them to "obey the government" when martial law is declared.
It was related to the Pastors that quarantines, martial law and forced relocation were a problem for state authorities when enforcing federal mandates due to the "cowboy mentality" of citizens standing up for their property and second amendment rights as well as farmers defending their crops and livestock from seizure. It was stressed that the Pastors needed to preach subservience to the authorities ahead of time in preparation for the round-ups and to make it clear to the congregation that "this is for their own good."
We have received confirmation from other preachers and Pastors that this program is a nationwide initiative and a literal Soviet model whereby the churches are being systematically infiltrated by government volunteers and used as conduits for martial law training and conditioning. The Pastor was told that over 1,300 counties were already on board.
It falls under the umbrella of the NVOAD program which is training volunteers in a "Peer to Peer" program in a neighborhood setting.
Pastors were told that the would be backed up by law enforcement in controlling uncooperative individuals and that they would even lead SWAT teams in attempting to quell resistance.
"We get the picture that we're going to be standing at the end of some farmer's lane while he's standing there with his double barrel, saying we have to confiscate your cows, your chickens, your firearms," said Pastor Revere.
The Pastor elaborated on how the directives were being smoke screened by an Orwellian alteration of their names.
"They're not using the term 'quarantine' - this is the term they're going to be using - it's called 'social distancing' don't you like that one," said the Pastor.
He also highlighted how detention camps had been renamed to give them a friendly warm veneer.
"Three months ago it was quarantine and relocation centers and now it's 'community centers' and these are going to be activated at the local schools," he said.
Pastor Revere outlined the plan to carry out mass vaccination and enforced drugging programs in times of crisis such as a bird flu outbreak.
"In the event of an outbreak or a bio-terrorist attack, there'd be a mass vaccination...they have a program nationwide 'Pills in People's Palm In 48 Hours'," said the Pastor who was told that Walmart had been designated as the central outlet of this procedure.
Pastor Revere said that many attendees believed in the necessity of the program and were completely unaware to the motivations behind its true purpose and were offered incentives to become volunteers such as preferential treatment and first access for themselves and their families to vaccines and food shipments in times of emergency.
Which roads to close off after martial law was declared had also already been mapped out.
Alex Jones' 2001 documentary film 9/11: The Road to Tyranny featured footage from a FEMA symposium given to firefighters and other emergency personnel in Kansas City in which it was stated that the founding fathers, Christians and homeschoolers were terrorists and should be treated with the utmost suspicion and brutality in times of national emergency.
We have highlighted previous training manuals issues by state and federal government bodies which identify whole swathes of the population as potential terrorists. A Texas Department of Public Safety Criminal Law Enforcement pamphlet gives the public characteristics to identify terrorists that include buying baby formula, beer, wearing Levi jeans, carrying identifying documents like a drivers license and traveling with women or children.
A Virginia training manual used to help state employees recognize terrorists lists anti-government and property rights activists as terrorists and includes binoculars, video cameras, pads and notebooks in a compendium of terrorist tools.
Shortly after 9/11 a Phoenix FBI manual that was disseminated amongst federal employees at the end of the Clinton term caused waves on the Internet after it was revealed that potential terrorists included, "defenders of the US Constitution against federal government and the UN, " and individuals who "make numerous references to the US Constitution." Lawyers everywhere cowered in fear at being shipped off to Gitmo.
In December 2003 the FBI warned Americans nationwide to be on the lookout for people reading Almanacs as this could indicate an act of terrorism in planning. Almanacs are popular glove box inventory of any vehicle and this ludicrous fearmongering was met with a raucous response from satirists and news commentators.
In another twilight zone Nazi-like spectacle, Pastors were asked to make a pledge or an affirmation during the meeting to fulfil the roles ascribed to them by FEMA. They were given assurances that they would be covered by full compensation in the event of resisters injuring them during property seizures and round-ups.
The Pastor said that his county had already succumbed to a tattle-tale like mentality where neighbors were reporting neighbors to the authorities for things like having chickens in their back yard. The brown shirt precedent has been set whereby people immediately turn to the authorities in fealty whenever their paranoid suspicions, fueled by zealous government and media fearmongering, are heightened.
Pastor Revere said the completion of the first stage of the program was slated for August 31st. At this point all the counties within the United States would be networked as part of the so-called disaster relief program.
No, this is nothing I have heard about in my area, but I live in such a far flung area it's hard to believe that the government would give a hoot about anything happening here. Dillingham is pretty much nothing but sport hunting/sport fishing/commercial fishing and the 2500 who live here year around. There's not a lot a terrorist could want with this area, unless they have something against salmon or moose. lol
Seriously though, no this is nothing I have heard anything about. About the only part of the above post that would seem to have a tie to Dillingham is that we do have a fair number of people that home school. But Dillingham is pretty laidback... other than being a rough fishing town (commercial) in the few summer months, I really can't see any attacks of any kind happening to or originating from our area of the world. I will have to ask Steve (our pastor) if it's anything he knows anything about or has heard about.
Regarding our religious community... Bush Alaska can be a difficult place to find bodies of believers. Not impossible, but perhaps harder than in other places. I'm just not sure its as much a part of the fabric of life here that it is in other places and it could be that a part of that is that it hasn't had the time to mesh that other places have, with the advancement of western culture.
Dillingham is at least large enough to have a few choices, as far as denominations... In a community of approximately 2500 full time (it swells to twice that in summer with the commercial fishermen), we have the following churches: Catholic, Lutheran, Assembly of God, Community Baptist, Moravian, Church of Latter Day Saints and the Dillingham Bible Fellowship (Baptist- and the one I attend). I am not aware of attendance figures for the Catholic, Lutheran or LDS, but the numbers, on average, for the other four are: Assembly of God: 35-40, Moravian: 80-100, Community Baptist: 10-15, Dillingham Bible Fellowship: 15-20. I think if you compare this with lower 48 communities, at least in a lot of places and with communities of comparable size, the numbers are low. I guess my point in sharing that is that perhaps our pastors, given the numbers and the isolated nature of the place we call home (you have to fly to get here... there are no roads closer than Anchorage- 327 air miles away), would not be a high priority as far as the government is concerned.
Is this something you have heard about with pastors in Colorado?