Thursday, December 22, 2016

Thu Dec 22nd Todays News

The December IPA Review is out and journalist Deborah Sims writes of her cancer journey "How Red Tape Almost Killed Me." Deborah has CLL, a form of Leukemia which is particularly deadly. A drug which can cure it has been developed in her home town of Melbourne. Only she needed to spend over $500k flying to London to access the drug because of red tape. If she hadn't had London connections, or if she had not had the resources, she would now be dead. Many people die each year because they aren't privileged, and they are held down by red tape. Red tape created by the likes of Bob Brown and other Greens leaders, or ALP leaders. Red tape that conservatives want to cut. It is ironic that a journalist has had to pay such a high price. But they are blessed to not pay higher. I know a former Marine with CLL who now lives in Australia. He is not privileged, and so red tape will prevent him receiving appropriate treatment. But he is also a child of God, and a fitness fanatic, and he has apparently gone into spontaneous remission. His form was not as severe as Deborah's had been. It can strike anyone. The issue was made personal for me recently when some new medication I take which is effective with diabetes is not discounted by PBS. Luckily I can afford it. 

Red tape irritates me. I created a video for my landlord, of his children at a school play. So he can give it to relatives. I uploaded it to FaceBook to let him see it, and restricted it to only the closest friends. But FB noticed the school production included proprietary music and would not let me upload the file until I could prove I had the rights to the music. I've also found out my six year tussle with youtube over Adsence has been answered by them. They have decided they cannot promote my site, although they have advertised on it for free for years. Also my singing songs acapella has been deemed to breach musician copyright on youtube in some instances. Some people expecting original artists will be very disappointed. a 1946 movie I sourced images from for a friend's video has been deemed a breach of copyright, even though the film has had such protection removed by time. I can contest these alleged breaches, but I haven't the resources. And if I fail, the cost is very high. At least some of the alleged breaches are from a now dead artist from iCompositions who disliked my politics and targeted me for posting on AGW hysteria. Would Deborah care about that? Why can't conservatives fight the issue better? Why do Libertarians tend to go for balance and support oppressors, sometimes? Why do Greens and ALP get away with it?  
=== from 2015 ===
Christmas approaches, pregnant with meaning, different to different people. Even among Christian faithful there is divergence of opinion. A lot of people are not Christian, and yet the day is laden with meaning. There is a yearning for peace, for good will, for family and for love. And it is dissatisfying to many who don't possess such. Or don't feel they do. And the weight of expectation is heavy. It is close to the time celebrated by Pagans in the Northern hemisphere in times long past. Some say that that discredits the Christian celebrations, but no. There is nothing wrong with the celebration and that is from a Christian perspective. Joy is good. And so is wisdom. Have joy. Express love. And do so with knowledge that with tomorrow, life goes on, intensifies and grows. Please don't get drunk or dysfunctionally high. Because that robs you of your future. In some places, it is against the law to celebrate Christmas or party. But as the doctor said to the guy who broke his arm in two places, "don't go to those places." 

For some, at the moment, the Sex Party has more credibility.
From 2014
Channel 9 slimes PM for his greatest achievement for women. Lisa Wilkinson was the interviewer. She had tried to smear NSW Premier Baird recently with a gotcha. She did the same here with her partisan approach and the PM's reply was one which no reasonable person would condemn. Carried on all news networks, Wilkinson asked the PM her question. He reasonably replied that cutting the useless carbon tax gave back money to families and he was proud of that. Wilkinson claimed it was a gaffe, that somehow Mr Abbott had a women problem. The other day, following the siege in Sydney, Wilkinson attacked Premier Baird asking why he wasn't doing something that is the job of public servants. It is a mistake to get defensive, and Baird handled it superbly, but Wilkinson comes across as partisan as her silly husband. 

Wilkinson had wanted the PM and Premier to answer defensively, neither of them did, but her technique has been successful elsewhere with the media .. denialism. Wilkinson ignored that she had had reasonable answers and proceeded as if she had not. It is, as Blair discusses, related to jihadism and Islam. Around the world, there is a practiced denialism that refuses to accept that jihadism has committed an atrocity. Perhaps as in the case of a driver in France calling out "Allahu Akbar" while driving into a crowd of people and injuring eleven. It is an act of terrorism, but it also masks the fact it is a crime even if Islam were not involved. Islam is the pretext that 'excuses' any criminal activity. Man Monis asked for an ISIL flag, but clearly Monis had not been certain what one was and where to get one. Apparently there are some fifty such flags in NSW where it is illegal to have such a terrorist item. Monis had not been well connected with those he was purporting to represent. Same too with Wilkinson, who claims she is fair and balanced, when she is in fact partisan. 

Denialism excuses terror. Press, in denying the obvious reality, search for something else, as when some terrorists killed over 130 children recently, wrapping up with "We've killed the children, what next?" Media gave their 'reason' as being revenge for a drone attack. Which is utter rubbish even if there had been a drone attack or several. Killing those children did not achieve any end. The drone attacks had not been a reason. It was terrorism. And Islamic clerics who approve the pretexts approve the terror. As does the complicit media. 

But denialism does not merely pervade jihadism and reporting of terrorism. The ALP who with their union connections practice corruption and denialism supports them too. Gillard practiced denialism when faced with clear evidence of her corrupt practice. She insisted she should be judged from a lower standard. And the ABC practiced denialism by not reporting the corruption they saw. The snigger regarding WMD in Iraq is still given by international press aware that the WMD were found and had been used on Syrians before being collected by the UN and examined. Press had been aware of WMD being present in Iraq as early as 2005. 

Meanwhile Monis' proudly jihadist wife has had her bail revoked. It turns out NSW ALP leader Robertson had supported Monis when Monis had written offensive letters to widows of soldiers. Robertson declared why he supported a jihadist a few years ago. "My staff do not have the capacity to do Google checks..." NSW Opposition Leader, John Robertson said.that sounds right. He has accurately described their standard. Blair discusses misunderstandings. They can happen. Perhaps Robertson misunderstood why he was supporting a jihadist who had threatened war widows. It can happen. But more likely, there was corruption involved. Robertson did the unthinkable because of policy which was higher. 

Lisa Oldfield attacked by taxi driver, molested. The driver was not registered as they were supposed to be. They will be identified. Lisa had gone to a Christmas function and had had a drink, so she caught a taxi rather than drive. And she dozed off on the journey. She awakened to the hands of the driver molesting her, leaving strong bruises. Because the driver had disconnected their electronic signature, it is apparent they planned their opportunistic attack. It doesn't have to be terrorism to be wrong. 

Crikey readers support ISIL over the PM according to Crikey poll. Not doubting the accuracy of the poll, it says much about Crikey readers. They probably support BBL04 Perth Scorchers. 
From 2013
Tweeting has gotten some people in trouble. Sometimes the controversy is concocted and inflated, as with Duck Dynasty. Sometimes it is just a highly lauded idiot being themselves, as with a former PR-exec going to Africa. One hopes she enjoyed her stay. Words have power. Used by wise people, words can build and create hope where there is none, when all seems lost. Such is the case when a dying woman left some letters, to be read after she died. But, words can be badly used. I have pointed this out many times to many people. If you use hatred to make a point, you probably aren't making it well. It would be wrong of me not to say so. One person so advised by me accused me of being dictatorial. I deleted some posts based on published guidelines. That isn't censorship. Censorship is what you get when you can't post good ideas .. or any ideas ..

Piers has a strong opinion on Christians being killed for their faith. But that does not worry me as much as innocent people being killed indiscriminately so as to scare others. The faith of the victim is not important. The faith of the abusers is debatable. Nero felt he was persecuting atheists when he persecuted Christians. That didn't make his ideas worthwhile. A sherif in England denied safe passage to several families a thousand years ago, and so they were lynched. It would have been a cowardly crime at the time, and is considered one today, except where the UN approves the mayhem. Christians are not assured of a great life in the world. It just highlights an important thing. President Bush was wise to defend US interests in Iraq and Afghanistan. Obama is wrong to abrogate responsibility. A weak President is a bad one, internationally, a weak President is a disaster. Obama is unlikely to tweet himself out of trouble.
Historical perspective on this day
In 69, Emperor Vitellius was captured and murdered at the Gemonian stairs in Rome. 880, Luoyang, eastern capital of the Tang dynasty, was captured by rebel leader Huang Chaoduring the reign of Emperor Xizong. 1135, Stephen of Blois became King of England 1216, Pope Honorius III approved the Dominican Order through the papal bull of confirmation Religiosam vitam. 1622, Bucaramanga, Colombia was founded. 1769, Sino-Burmese War (1765–69) ended with an uneasy truce. 1790, the Turkish fortress of Izmail was stormed and captured by Alexander Suvorov and his Russian armies.

In 1807, the Embargo Act, forbidding trade with all foreign countries, was passed by the U.S. Congress, at the urging of President Thomas Jefferson. 1808, Ludwig van Beethovenconducted and performed in concert at the Theater an der Wien, Vienna, with the premiere of his Fifth SymphonySixth SymphonyFourth Piano Concerto (performed by Beethoven himself) and Choral Fantasy (with Beethoven at the piano). 1851, India's first freight train was operated in Roorkee, India. 1864, Savannah, Georgia fell to General William Tecumseh Sherman, concluding his "March to the Sea". 1885, Itō Hirobumi, a samurai, became the first Prime Minister of Japan. 1890, Cornwallis Valley Railway began operation between Kentvilleand Kingsport, Nova Scotia. 1891, Asteroid 323 Brucia became the first asteroid discovered using photography. 1894, the Dreyfus affair began in France, when Alfred Dreyfus was wrongly convicted of treason.

In 1920, the GOELRO economic development plan was adopted by the 8th Congress of Soviets of the Russian SFSR. 1937, the Lincoln Tunnel opened to traffic in New York City. 1939,  Indian Muslims observed a "Day of Deliverance" to celebrate the resignation of members of the Indian National Congress over their not having been consulted over the decision to enter World War II with the United Kingdom. 1940, World War II: Himarë was captured by the Greek army. 1942, World War II: Adolf Hitler signed the order to develop the V-2 rocket as a weapon. 1944, World War II: Battle of the Bulge – German troops demanded the surrender of United States troops at Bastogne, Belgium, prompting the famous one word reply by General Anthony McAuliffe: "Nuts!" Also 1944, World War II: The Vietnam People's Army was formed to resist Japanese occupation of Indochina, now Vietnam. 1947, the Constituent Assembly of Italy approved the Constitution of Italy. 1951, the Selangor Labour Party was founded in SelangorMalaya. 1956, Colo, the first gorilla to be bred in captivity, was born at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium in Ohio. 1963, the cruise ship Lakonia burns 180 miles (290 km) north of Madeira, Portugal with the loss of 128 lives. 1964, the first test flight of the SR-71 (Blackbird) took place at Air Force Plant 42 in Palmdale, California. 1965, in the United Kingdom, a 70 mph speed limit was applied to all rural roads including motorways for the first time. Previously, there had been no speed limit.

In 1974, Grande ComoreAnjouan and Mohéli voted to become the independent nation of ComorosMayotte remaining under French administration. Also 1974, the house of former British Prime Minister Edward Heath was attacked by members of the Provisional IRA. 1978, the pivotal Third Plenum of the 11th National Congress of the Communist Party of China was held in Beijing, with Deng Xiaoping reversing Mao-era policies to pursue a program for Chinese economic reform. 1984, Bernhard Goetz shot four African American would-be muggers on an express train in Manhattan section of New York, New York. 1987, in Zimbabwe, the political parties ZANU and ZAPU reached an agreement that ended the violence in the Matabeleland region known as the Gukurahundi. 1988 Chico Mendes, a Brazilian rubber tapperunionist and environmental activist, was assassinated. 1989, Communist President of Romania Nicolae Ceaușescu was overthrown by Ion Iliescuafter days of bloody confrontations. The deposed dictator and his wife fled Bucharest with a helicopter as protesters erupted in cheers. Also 1989, Berlin's Brandenburg Gate re-opened after nearly 30 years, effectively ending the division of East and West Germany.

In 1990, final independence of Marshall Islands and Federated States of Micronesia after termination of trusteeship. Also 1990, the Croatian Parliament adopted the current Constitution of Croatia. 1991, armed opposition groups launched a military coup against President of Georgia Zviad Gamsakhurdia. 1992, the Archives of Terror were discovered. 1997, Acteal massacre: Attendees at a prayer meeting of Roman Catholic activists for indigenous causes in the small village of Acteal in the Mexican state of Chiapas were massacred by paramilitary forces. Also 1997, Hussein Farrah Aidid relinquished the disputed title of President of Somalia by signing the Cairo Declaration, in Cairo, Egypt. It is the first major step towards reconciliation in Somalia since 1991. 1999, Korean Air Cargo Flight 8509, a Boeing 747-200F crashed shortly after take-off from London Stansted Airport due to pilot error. All 4 crew members were killed. 2001, Burhanuddin Rabbani, political leader of the Northern Alliance, handed over power in Afghanistan to the interim government headed by President Hamid Karzai. Also 2001 Richard Reid attempted to destroy a passenger airliner by igniting explosives hidden in his shoes aboard American Airlines Flight 63. 2008, an ash dike ruptured at a solid waste containment area in Roane County, Tennessee, releasing 1.1 billion US gallons (4,200,000 m3) of coal fly ash slurry. 2010, the repeal of the Don't ask, don't tellpolicy, the 17-year-old policy banning homosexuals serving openly in the United States military, was signed into law by President Barack Obama.
=== Publishing News ===
This column welcomes feedback and criticism. The column is not made up but based on the days events and articles which are then placed in the feed. So they may not have an apparent cohesion they would have had were they made up.
I am publishing a book called Bread of Life: January. 

Bread of Life is a daily bible quote with a layman's understanding of the meaning. I give one quote for each day, and also a series of personal stories illustrating key concepts eg Who is God? What is a miracle? Why is there tragedy?

January is the first of the anticipated year-long work of thirteen books. One for each month and the whole year. It costs to publish. It (Kindle version) should retail at about $2US online, but the paperback version would cost more, according to production cost.
If you have a heart for giving, I fundraise at
Editorials will appear in the "History in a Year by the Conservative Voice" series, starting with AugustSeptemberOctober, or at Amazon  The kindle version is cheaper, but the soft back version allows a free kindle version.

List of available items at Create Space
Happy birthday and many happy returns Ammanuel Abebe and Hoa Nguyen. Born on the same day, across the years, along with 
December 22Mother's Day in Indonesia
Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird
We have agreed on truce. We have a plan. We celebrate. We breathe air. We are good shots. Let's party. 
Andrew Bolt



Tim Blair – Tuesday, December 22, 2015 (1:18am)

Despite suffering even worse than male microaggression, Mrs Barker refuses to seek a feminist safe place:



Tim Blair – Monday, December 22, 2014 (5:18pm)

Man Monis’s third wife, Muslim convert and accused murderer Amirah Droudis, has been jailed ahead of her trial next year: 
The court has just revoked the bail for Amirah Droudis, with sheriffs taking her immediately into custody.


Tim Blair – Monday, December 22, 2014 (4:24am)

Complete denial of obvious facts can be a remarkably effective tactic. Properly delivered, a blunt denial in the face of clear truths will utterly confound an opponent. 
As a short-term strategy, nothing beats it.

Icon Arrow Continue reading 'THE LIMITS OF DENIAL'


Tim Blair – Monday, December 22, 2014 (4:16am)

Office colleague Chris once showed me an article about gaudily painted BMWs. One example upset him. “This is revolting,” he fumed. “Who on earth would do that?”
“I think you’ll find it was coons,” I said.

Icon Arrow Continue reading 'MODERN MISUNDERSTANDINGS'


Tim Blair – Monday, December 22, 2014 (3:58am)

Sydney’s alleged Islamic State waddle squad is revealed:

Two of the brothers, all of whom are believed to be in Syria, were evidently dominant at the dinner table. 


Tim Blair – Monday, December 22, 2014 (3:51am)

This says far more about Crikey‘s readers than it does about Tony Abbott: 
Prime Minister Tony Abbott is less popular with Crikey readers than the actual leader of Islamic State. 
Tragically, I received even fewer votes than the PM, despite an impressive nomination
Let it never be said that the Daily Tele doesn’t ask the tough questions. “Who is Australia’s craziest left-wing frightbat? Crown our crazy queen!” Blair’s witch-project, where he dismissed some of Australia’s leading journalists and academics as silly, hysterical women who should get a grip on their womb-madness and let the men do the talking, made for uncomfortable reading. 
Modern leftists absolutely hate “uncomfortable reading”, as Brendan O’Neill has observed: 
Where once students might have allowed their eyes and ears to be bombarded by everything from risqué political propaganda to raunchy rock, now they insulate themselves from anything that might dent their self-esteem and, crime of crimes, make them feel ‘uncomfortable’. Student groups insist that online articles should have ‘trigger warnings’ in case their subject matter might cause offence. 
(Via J.F. Beck)


Tim Blair – Monday, December 22, 2014 (3:11am)

Former Fairfax frightboy Mike Carlton proves that having completely lost it is no impediment to continually losing it. He’s like a perpetual motion loss-making machine. Speaking of Michael, please enjoy Hal G.P. Colebatch’s review of the recent Prime Minister’s Literary Awards: 
Twitter was going berserk even before the ceremony finished. Leading the charge was one Mike Carlton, whose own entry, a rehashing of a naval engagement in World War I, had not won a prize. (I had previously written critically of another book by him and received a delightful note from him replete with four-letter words, a practice that is said to have got him sacked from the Sydney Morning Herald.) 
To be fair, Carlton was suspended rather than sacked, although his immediate resignation delivered the same result – possibly desired by Fairfax management. Here’s looking forward to 2015, and Mike’s angriest year yet.


A time for love and joy

Piers Akerman – Saturday, December 21, 2013 (11:43pm)

AS the world carols towards Christmas, at least in packed Western-style shopping malls, it is easy to lose sight of the plight of Christ’s followers.
Across the Middle East, in towns and hamlets where some of the oldest vestiges of the religion have clung to existence for almost 2000 years, the remnant Christian populations are being slaughtered.
In Egypt, Libya, Syria, thousands of Christians have been systematically murdered in a continuing horror that is largely overlooked by the world and overshadowed by the bloody wars raging between the Sunni and Shia Muslims.
The Copts, who had notably lived peaceably among the Egyptians, are now almost extinct in the region of their origin, flourishing only in the West.
According to a three-year Pew Research study of harassment of particular religious groups released in August, 2011, government or social harassment of Christians was reported in a total of 130 countries, 66 per cent of the nations surveyed.
Over the past two years, the situation has only worsened.
Anti-Christian persecution and actual violence have increased. The International Society for Human Rights, a German-based monitoring organisation says 80 per cent of all acts of religious discrimination are directed at Christians.
Rarely however is the big picture revealed, with most news items mentioning the burning of a church here, the murder of a family there, a car bombing or militarily-approved execution somewhere else.
The relentless extermination of Christians rarely rates in the news now. Just as the Syrian civil war, which occupied centre stage and world attention - even drawing some asinine comments from US President Obama for a fleeting moment - is now relegated to background chatter.
Ironically, Syria once housed one of the larger Christian communities in the Middle East and Syrian Christians, and Syrian Jews, were recognised with positions in the Cabinet of the now reviled President Assad.
They would have absolutely no future under the extremists in the militias competing to unseat the dictator.
Even the Burmese, whom the West views in a peculiarly muddled manner because of the media-friendly presence of political figure Aung Sun Suu Kyi, persecute their minority Christian Chin and Karen ethnics.
So much for the luvvies embrace of Buddhism as the religious panacea for the world’s problems.
In North Korea, where Kim Jong-un executed his uncle last week, it is estimated that between 50,000 to 100,000 Christians are held in forced labour camps for failing to worship the nation’s founder Kim Il-sung.
Religion is not a comfortable topic for discussion in Australia unless the absolute evils exposed by the succession of inquiries into child abuse make it inevitable.
The horror stories related to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse would make anyone weep.
But as appallingly tragic as the stories told by the brave survivors have been, there are others still suffering too much pain to expose themselves to the publicity an appearance would inevitably create.
In recent weeks, a number of such people have told me that even the existence of the inquiry has caused them to relive horrendous experiences they had been struggling to cope with.
One correspondent, who sent me a copy of his 29-page psychiatric report to help me gain greater insight into his situation, came forward after hearing the evidence of one of his old companions, Richard “Tommy’’ Campion, who was beaten and sexually abused throughout the 14 years he spent at the North Coast Children’s Home in Lismore.
The distressed man said that Campion had mentioned in his presentation an episode about a child forced to wear a nappy all day as punishment for wetting his bed.
“I was that child, this is the episode,” he wrote.
“I was forced to sleep in a cot, suitable for a little baby because I had a problem with wetting the bed but I was about 4 or 5 years old. I couldn’t straighten my legs.
“I woke up one morning having wet myself and was terrified. I was then told I would have to wear a nappy to breakfast in front of 35 other children.
“When they had sat down to breakfast I was PARADED in front of them all while they were ‘ordered’ to ‘laugh at me’. I sat and had breakfast with all these children while wearing a nappy hearing the ridicule and laughter constantly.
“Then after breakfast I was told I was going to wear the nappy to school all day. I was absolutely terrified, humiliated and to this day I still wish I was dead, I constantly wish for death and I cannot deal with more than three people at a time.”
His report would indicate he has led a life of catastrophic distress with not infrequent feelings of worthlessness, guilt and self-loathing and thoughts of suicide.
It would be easy, as some have raced to do, to blame religion and particularly Christianity for the wretched life he has endured, but it would be wrong to do so.
The message Christians share is one of hope, whether they are being persecuted in another country or brutalised by someone professing to be a Christian here.
That is the message in those shopping-mall Christmas carols, if they can be heard above the ringing of the cash registers.
It is not a call to arms, a call to hate, a call to slaughter, but a call to love. It is hopeful.
So, a Merry Christmas to all, and let the message of peace and joy spread throughout the world.


Tim Blair – Sunday, December 22, 2013 (5:08am)

Public relations expert Justine Sacco loses her job after tweeting: 
Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDS. Just kidding. I’m white! 
Sacco joins a long list of people fired or suspended for Twitter comments:

Icon Arrow Continue reading '48 PEOPLE IN TWITTER TROUBLE'
Two years after dying, Brenda Schmitz sends her family an amazing Christmas gift
"HELLO my name is Brenda Schmitz and when you are in receipt of this letter I will already have lost my battle to ovarian cancer."
A good man with a proud list of achievements has passed - ed

It wasn't age that did them in .. drugs, alcohol, firearms .. ed

Anger and empathy

If you’re angry, you cannot really be empathising with the person you’re angry at. A failure to empathise is not a misunderstanding, like when you overinterpret something and get it wrong, nor a fallacy, like failing to see arbitrariness or causality; but it is an intellectual limitation — a form of short-sightedness. When we come into contact with a mind that is not our own, and can only see it from the outside, through the lens of our own thoughts and feelings, then our viewpoints are always blinkered, myopic, one-sided. It’s like never knowing what the back of your head looks like. In the case of anger, it means judging someone without fully understanding him.

Let us not hate anger, but merely see it for what it is. Anger is characterised by paranoia, fallacies of judgement, and a kind of self-centred myopia, but it had to be that way. Darwinian pressures demanded it. The anger program had to be quick and automatic. It had to be nasty. Like it or not, the angriest, most dogmatic, and most tribalistic of our ancestors are the ones that reproduced the most prolifically. So we are not blaming anyone for these intellectual flaws. Man is not Vulcan. Wisdom in man takes considerable work, a little like getting dogs to stop barking at strangers.

Extract from
The Anger Fallacy: Uncovering the Irrationality of the Angry Mindset
by Steven Laurent and Ross G Menzies

Buy the book at

or read more about anger from the authors at

or read about The Anger Fallacy Research project at the University of Sydney
"Writing regulation gives companies a leg up on their competition without ever having to improve quality or lower prices. If lobbying is cheaper than innovating, companies will write regulation instead of taking risks."


Where were all these Christians when the Jews were being exiled or murdered in Arab lands and Europe ?

Or indeed Hindus and Buddhists suffering the same in Asian countries at the hands of Islamist extremists ?

Currently over 100,000 Syrian civilians have been killed while Muslim factions butcher each other. Not a word about them by the Prince. And let us not forget his Nazi sympathising Uncle who abdicated.

Christians of convenience such as good Prince Charles are no different to Prime Ministers who attend church for the TV cameras on a Sunday.

So what do they really do and achieve considering their higher status and privilege ?

They pontificate and impress many but show me the results of their speeches and I'll show you a true leader.>

My first thought is "Bullshit." Not that Christians are being killed, but being targeted. The people targeted are defenceless. When Amnesty International divert funds to defend terrorists like David Hicks, it is the defenceless who are victims. Prince Charles is late to the party. His grandfather, for political reasons, facilitated the slaughter of Jewish families so as to appease former Nazi allies. - ed




“While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.” Luke 2:6-7 NIV
Morning and Evening by Charels Spurgeon


"Yet he hath made with me an everlasting covenant."
2 Samuel 23:5

This covenant is divine in its origin. "He hath made with me an everlasting covenant." Oh that great word He ! Stop, my soul. God, the everlasting Father, has positively made a covenant with thee; yes, that God who spake the world into existence by a word; he, stooping from his majesty, takes hold of thy hand and makes a covenant with thee. Is it not a deed, the stupendous condescension of which might ravish our hearts forever if we could really understand it? "HE hath made with me a covenant." A king has not made a covenant with me--that were somewhat; but the Prince of the kings of the earth, Shaddai, the Lord All-sufficient, the Jehovah of ages, the everlasting Elohim, "He hath made with me an everlasting covenant." But notice, it is particular in its application. "Yet hath he made with me an everlasting covenant." Here lies the sweetness of it to each believer. It is nought for me that he made peace for the world; I want to know whether he made peace for me! It is little that he hath made a covenant, I want to know whether he has made a covenant with me. Blessed is the assurance that he hath made a covenant with me! If God the Holy Ghost gives me assurance of this, then his salvation is mine, his heart is mine, he himself is mine--he is my God.
This covenant is everlasting in its duration. An everlasting covenant means a covenant which had no beginning, and which shall never, never end. How sweet amidst all the uncertainties of life, to know that "the foundation of the Lord standeth sure," and to have God's own promise, "My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips." Like dying David, I will sing of this, even though my house be not so with God as my heart desireth.


"I clothed thee also with broidered work, and shod thee with badgers' skin, and I girded thee about with fine linen, and I covered thee with silk."
Ezekiel 16:10
See with what matchless generosity the Lord provides for his people's apparel. They are so arrayed that the divine skill is seen producing an unrivalled broidered work, in which every attribute takes its part and every divine beauty is revealed. No art like the art displayed in our salvation, no cunning workmanship like that beheld in the righteousness of the saints. Justification has engrossed learned pens in all ages of the church, and will be the theme of admiration in eternity. God has indeed "curiously wrought it." With all this elaboration there is mingled utility and durability, comparable to our being shod with badgers' skins. The animal here meant is unknown, but its skin covered the tabernacle, and formed one of the finest and strongest leathers known. The righteousness which is of God by faith endureth forever, and he who is shod with this divine preparation will tread the desert safely, and may even set his foot upon the lion and the adder. Purity and dignity of our holy vesture are brought out in the fine linen. When the Lord sanctifies his people, they are clad as priests in pure white; not the snow itself excels them; they are in the eyes of men and angels fair to look upon, and even in the Lord's eyes they are without spot. Meanwhile the royal apparel is delicate and rich as silk. No expense is spared, no beauty withheld, no daintiness denied.
What, then? Is there no inference from this? Surely there is gratitude to be felt and joy to be expressed. Come, my heart, refuse not thy evening hallelujah! Tune thy pipes! Touch thy chords!
"Strangely, my soul, art thou arrayed
By the Great Sacred Three!
In sweetest harmony of praise
Let all thy powers agree."

Today's reading: Micah 4-5, Revelation 12 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: Micah 4-5

The Mountain of the LORD
1 In the last days
the mountain of the LORD’s temple will be established
as the highest of the mountains;
it will be exalted above the hills,
and peoples will stream to it.
2 Many nations will come and say,
“Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD,
to the temple of the God of Jacob.
He will teach us his ways,
so that we may walk in his paths.”
The law will go out from Zion,
the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
3 He will judge between many peoples
and will settle disputes for strong nations far and wide.
They will beat their swords into plowshares
and their spears into pruning hooks.
Nation will not take up sword against nation,
nor will they train for war anymore.
4 Everyone will sit under their own vine
and under their own fig tree,
and no one will make them afraid,
for the LORD Almighty has spoken.
5 All the nations may walk
in the name of their gods,
but we will walk in the name of the LORD
our God for ever and ever....

Today's New Testament reading: Revelation 12

The Woman and the Dragon
1 A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. 2 She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth. 3 Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on its heads. 4 Its tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that it might devour her child the moment he was born. 5 She gave birth to a son, a male child, who “will rule all the nations with an iron scepter.” And her child was snatched up to God and to his throne. 6 The woman fled into the wilderness to a place prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days....
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