“Jesus, what are we doing?”

No one survives an abortion encounter unscathed. Even though he’d been raised in a family that was “thoroughly pro-abortion” and believed that abortion was “always the best option,” after his wife’s abortion, one post-abortive father was surprised by his own reaction. Despite the fact that he’d wanted it, insisting on it so vehemently he’d threatened to leave her if she didn’t consent to it:

“I found that I felt guilty, like I’d stepped over a line that shouldn’t have been crossed. There was also a feeling of dread, of impending doom. I sensed that some sort of divine punishment was waiting for me, and it was frightening.”

Dr. Arthur Shostak, who describes himself as “unswervingly pro-choice,” also confessed distress after involvement in an abortion:

“While I believe my lover and I chose the least-worst of the options available to us over two decades ago, I have lingering regrets about the situation.”

And that paragon of virtue, Steven Tyler, wrote this about witnessing his girlfriend’s abortion, which he also had coerced under threat of abandonment:

“It was a big crisis. … they put the needle in her belly and they squeeze the stuff in and you watch. And it comes out dead. I was pretty devastated. In my mind, I’m going, Jesus, what have I done?”

Jesus, what have I done? Whence cometh these reactions from decidedly pro-abortion fathers?

What have I done? indeed. One of the three, the one who opted to remain unnamed, eventually let that question penetrate his emotional defenses. But it wasn’t easy:

“I kept trying to find ways to run from that feeling of punishment. I wasn’t a Christian at the time, and I had no idea what I was feeling, or why. Our country’s lawmakers had made abortion legal, hadn’t they? They said everything was fine about it. So, why did I have these feelings? Why was my wife having these problems? During that time I started drinking more. I got more actively involved in sports. I did anything I could to try and cover up the feeling. I just wanted to quench it.

I didn’t want to think about the abortion or have anything to do with the subject, but my wife’s distress was a constant reminder. I tried to ignore her. If I allowed myself to believe that her problems were the result of the abortion, then I’d have to admit that what I did to her was wrong. I was very stubborn and very prideful. I had a heart like stone.

But one day I had a revelation. It was almost like someone removed scales from my eyes, allowing me to see clearly for the first time what I had done. My heart softened and I saw what abortion really was–not a solution to a problem, but the taking of an innocent life.”

He faced the difficult reality of it, and that opened the way for him to process the distress and lay it to rest for good:

“Several years later, my wife got involved with a post-abortion counseling ministry in the local area. One day they had a men’s outreach. I went, but I really didn’t want to share anything personal with this group of strangers. … But I took a chance. I opened my life to these Christian men and told them what I had done to my wife.

I expected anger . . . but what I found instead was compassion.

I expected judgment and condemnation . . . but what I found instead was forgiveness and acceptance.

I expected hatred . . . but what I found instead was Christ’s love being expressed through His people.”

His answer to post-abortion distress?

“Jesus truly is the only answer to post-abortion guilt.”

Father’s Day is this Sunday. Feminists will tell you that abortion is a women’s issue. It’s not. It’s about men just as much as it’s about women. Maybe more. Look at how all three of these pro-abortion men found themselves deeply troubled in the wake of a real abortion. Those feelings are saying something important. We would do well to listen to them.

For as much as loud voices of the day insist that everything’s fine with it, the conscience knows better. It’s not fine. The taking of an innocent life is never okay, and the conscience knows it. Face up to it, and Jesus can deal with the guilt of it. Ignore it, and it will remain. It’s as simple as that.

May God bless fathers today, including the post-abortive ones. May God inspire more men to face up to what we are doing. And lay the abortion holocaust to rest for good.

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CO2: Elixir of Life

Elixir of Life?

Yes, ‘Elixir of Life.” Elixir of Life is the label two scientists apply to carbon dioxide. Despite the fact that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has declared it a dangerous air pollutant, the son and father team of Dr. Craig D. Idso and Dr. Sherwood B. Idso, in their book, The Many Benefits of Atmospheric CO2 Enrichment, unabashedly say just the opposite:

“Atmospheric carbon dioxide is the elixir of life. It is the primary raw material out of which plants construct their tissues, which in turn are the materials out of which animals construct theirs. This knowledge is so well established, in fact, that we humans – and all the rest of the biosphere – are described in the most basic of terms as carbon-based lifeforms.”

Indeed. “Not only are increasing concentrations of atmospheric CO2 not dangerous to human, animal, or plant health,” writes Jay Lehr, science director of The Heartland Institute, in his review of the book, “they actually benefit earth’s many life forms, counteracting the deleterious effects of real air pollutants.”

The two scientists bring impressive credentials to bear on their admittedly non-conformist declaration.

Dr. Craig D. Idso is the founder and former President of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change and currently serves as Chairman of the Center’s board of directors. He earned his B.S. in Geography from Arizona State University, his M.S. in Agronomy from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln, and his Ph.D. in Geography from Arizona State University.

Dr. Sherwood B. Idso earned his Bachelor of Physics, Master of Science, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from the University of Minnesota. From 1967 – 2001, he served as a Research Physicist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service at the U.S. Water Conservation Laboratory in Phoenix, Arizona, and as an Adjunct Professor at Arizona State University in the Departments of Geology, Geography, Botany and Microbiology. He is the author or co-author of over 500 scientific publications.

Unless you’re an avid environmental scientist, though, you may find The Many Benefits of Atmospheric Co2 Enrichment rather boring reading. It’s filled with charts, graphs, and summarized results of scientific studies. But the executive summary version is fascinating.

In sum, the two scientists document 55 ways in which elevated atmospheric CO2 levels benefit the earth’s biosphere. For the reasonably scientific-minded not given to dicyphering science journals for everyday reading, Jay Lehr handily summarized ten of them:

Air Pollution Stress on Plants—As the CO2 content of the air rises, most plants reduce their stomatal apertures, or openings through which they consume carbon dioxide, and thereby reduce the intake of harmful pollutants that might damage their tissue.

Diseases of Plants—Plant diseases are commonly reduced as a result of improved immune systems that result from increased CO2 in the surrounding environment. This has been proven by hundreds of plant studies.

Flowers—Most plants produce more and larger flowers at higher atmospheric CO2 concentrations.

Health Promotion—CO2 enrichment increases the quantity and potency of the many beneficial substances found in the tissue of our food crops which therefore make it onto our dinner tables with more vitamin C and other antioxidants.

Medical Plants—Atmospheric CO2 increases the production of many health-promoting substances in medicinal plants, which have been shown to fight a wide variety of human maladies.

Nitrogen Fixation—Increasing CO2 concentration improves nitrogen fixation by soil bacteria, which leads to increased nitrogen availability in the soil for plants that normally need additional nitrogen provisions.

Photosynthesis—Additional atmospheric CO2 typically increases the photosynthesis rates of nearly all plants.

Soil Erosion—Increased CO2 enables all plants to extract more moisture from their surroundings; as a result, plants expand their root systems and significantly stabilize soil, thus protecting it from erosion.

Transpiration—Plants take in CO2 from open pores, called stomata, through which moisture also exits the plant. With increased CO2 in the air, plants do not need to keep these pores open very long to capture the needed CO2, and thus less water is lost through evaporation, a process called transpiration.

Water Stress—When plants are growing under less-than-optimal soil water availability, higher atmospheric CO2 dramatically improves the plants’ chances for survival and healthy growth.

Cool, huh?

Spring is unfolding into summer. As a carbon-based lifeform, I invite you to join me in enjoying the richness of biological life and spreading the word about this wrongly maligned elixir of life.

May Day, East and West

As far back as ancient Rome, May 1stMay Day – has been celebrated as a spring festival in the northern hemisphere. But in the nineteenth century, that changed. Ironically, though the change began in America, America eventually rejected it. In other parts of the world, however, the shift in May Day emphasis gave way to radical upheavals of whole societies with generational consequences.

Seeds of Revolution
It began in America. In the 1800s, unhappy workers in the industrializing US began to agitate for a shorter workday – eight hours, to be exact. And it was the eight-hour movement which directly gave birth to a revolutionalized May Day. Not long after the Civil War put an end to real slavery, the National Labor Union adopted the language of slavery to advance its cause. At its founding convention in August, 1966, the following resolution was passed:

The first and great necessity of the present, to free labor of this country from capitalist slavery, is the passing of a law by which 8 hours shall be the normal working day in all states in the American union. We are resolved to put forth all our strength until this glorious result is attained.

In September of the same year, the Geneva Congress of the First International, an international consortium of labor unions, resolved to issue the same demand:

The Congress proposes 8 hours as the legal limit of the working day.

Eight-hour leagues were subsequently formed in America, and several state governments adopted the eight-hour day on public work.

The following year, 1867, Karl Marx called attention to this development in the first volume of Capital (Das Kapital). In a chapter called “The Working Day,” Marx too compared the plight of workers to that of slaves and similarly attached his cause to theirs:

In the United States of America, any sort of independent labor movement was paralyzed so long as slavery disfigured a part of the republic. Labor with a white skin cannot emancipate itself where labor with a black skin is branded. But out of the death of slavery a new vigorous life sprang. The first fruit of the Civil War was an agitation for the 8-hour day – a movement which ran with express speed from the Atlantic to the Pacific, from New England to California.

May Day: A Day for Agitation
A young American labor organization which would later become known as the American Federation of Labor (A. F. of L.), was the first organization to call for specific action on May 1st. At a meeting in Chicago on October 7th, 1884, it passed the following resolution calling for a walkout eighteen months hence:

Resolved by the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions the United States and Canada, that eight hours shall constitute legal day’s labor from May First, 1886, and that we recommend to labor organizations throughout their jurisdiction that they so direct their laws as to conform to this resolution by the time named.

A year later, the Federation reiterated the resolution on the planned walkout, and several national unions organized to prepare for the struggle. According to International pamphleteer Alexander Trachtenberg:

The rank and file of both organizations were enthusiastically preparing for the struggle. Eight-hour day leagues and associations sprang up in various cities and an elevated spirit of militancy was felt throughout the labor movement, which was infecting masses of unorganized workers.

There were detractors in this nascent worker’s paradise. Certain leaders of the Knights of Labor, especially one Terrence Powderly, were, according to Trachtenberg, “sabotaging the movement and even secretly advising its unions not to strike.” But the May 1st, 1886, demonstration took place, nonetheless. Its most intense concentration point was Chicago:

The May First strike was most aggressive in Chicago, which was at that time the center of a militant Left-wing labor movement. Although insufficiently clear politically on a number of the problems of the labor movement, it was nevertheless a fighting movement, always ready to call the workers to action, develop their fighting spirit and set as their goal not only the immediate improvement of their living and working conditions, but the abolition of the capitalist system as well.

This first May Day demonstration led to what became known as the Haymarket Affair, which left 18 people in Chicago, 10 strikers and 8 policemen, dead and more wounded. But it was the inaugural battle in the Marxian class struggle, and the war was on. At the first congress of the Second International (the First International had disbanded), held in Paris in 1889, May 1st was officially designated as a day on which workers of the world would organize in their political parties and trade unions to demand the 8-hour day. At the Congress of the International at Zurich in 1893 the following resolution was adopted:

The demonstration on May First for the 8-hour day must serve at the same time as a demonstration of the determined will of the working class to destroy class distinctions through social change and thus enter on the road, the only road leading to peace for all peoples, to international peace.

Thus did international unions pursue the glorious goals of the 8-hour day, social change, and the class upheaval that would eventually bring about world peace. May Day demonstrations grew in the east, and by 1900, the Russian revolutionary movement was gaining steam under the leadership of Vladimir Lenin, who wrote in the preface to a pamphlet, May Days in Kharkov, in November, 1900:

In another six months, the Russian workers will celebrate the first of May of the first year of the new century, and it is time we set to work to make the arrangements for organizing the celebrations in as large a number of centers as possible, and on as imposing a scale as possible, not only by the number that will take part in them, but also by their organized character, by the class-consciousness they will reveal, by the determination that will be shown to commence the irrepressible struggle for the political liberation of the Russian people, and, consequently, for a free opportunity for the class development of the proletariat and its open struggle for Socialism.

Revolutionary Success in the East
May Day became known as Red Day, and the cause achieved its stated goal with the Russian Revolution of 1917. Under Lenin’s leadership, the Russian people were politically liberated, the struggle for Socialism was won, and the Soviet Union was born.

But Failure in America
But in America, the May Day movement took a different turn. Certain “reformists” (a pejorative term used by Trachtenberg) after the manner of Terrence Powderly, were not sufficiently aggrieved to take up the struggle against their employers. They began scheduling May 1st demonstrations on the nearest Sunday and turning May Day into a day of rest and recreation instead of struggle, a day of labor holiday, games in the park or outings in the country instead of war.

This turn did not sit well with the International, to whom May Day was to be a “demonstration of the determined will of the working class to destroy class distinctions.” The reformists did not consider themselves bound by the decisions of international congresses, and this could not be tolerated. In 1904, the International demanded obedience, resolving:

The International Socialist Congress in Amsterdam calls upon all Social-Democratic Party organizations and trade unions of all countries to demonstrate energetically on May First for the legal establishment of the 8-hour day, for the class demands of the proletariat, and for universal peace. The most effective way of demonstrating on May First is by stoppage of work. The Congress therefore makes it mandatory upon the proletarian organizations of all countries to stop work on May First, wherever it is possible without injury to the workers.

Freedom Prevails
It was an order that was, thankfully, more or less ignored, the Socialists having become more oppressive than industrial employers. The reformists moved American observances of Labor Day to the first Monday in September, thus inaugurating the national holiday Americans know today.

Russian novelist Leo Tolstoi, a contemporary of Lenin, wrote, “Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.” These ‘misleaders,’ as the Socialists called them, wisely foresaw that the Socialists’ designs for changing the world were, at best, ill-advised. Whether it was because they valued their hard-won political liberties too much to kowtow to the International’s dictates, or, understanding real slavery enough to find the Labor unions’ analogies grotesque, or simply because the Judeo-Christian work ethic resided deeply in the American psyche, they have done a great service for subsequent generations.

We can remember them and thank them by likewise rejecting leftist agitation and keeping May Day as a spring festival.

*Information for this article was drawn from “The History of May Day” by Alexander Trachtenberg, Published: International Pamphlets, 1932, Proofed and Corrected: by Dawen Gaitis 2007 for Marxists.org

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The Greater Hoax

"You Can Save the Earth?"

Are you enjoying Creation this Earth Week? The first nationwide Earth Day was held on April 22nd, 1970, on the 100th anniversary of the birth of Vladimir Lenin, the founding father of the Soviet Union. Some say the date is only coincidental. Some say it’s isn’t.

I don’t know. But I do know this: Behind the ‘Save the Earth’ movement runs a forceful undercurrent of hostility to God that is consistent with his state atheism. Take a look at these snippets of media coverage on James Inhofe’s new book, The Greatest Hoax: How the Global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future:

That last one, from Rachel Maddow’s personal blog on the MSNBC website, is especially telling, considering Maddow interviewed Inhofe and said she read the whole book. Presumably she invited him onto her show to discuss it, but she appeared wholly uninterested in the substance of it or the science supporting it. In fact she looked rather peeved when he went into it, but that could be because he blew her out of the water when it came to discussing the science. Click here to see the interview.

Clearly, what to her is all about going along with ‘consensus,’ is, to him, all about the science. That and serving the American people. And he knows what he’s talking about. The Senator, who serves on the Senate Committees on Environment and Public Works writes:

“I began my own investigation into the science in 2003, because I found out how much the ‘solution’ would cost and I said that if the United States was even going to consider such expensive, drastic measures that would fundamentally change our economy, the science driving that decision had better be solid. After my rigorous research, I found that it was not – and over the course of six years, more and more flaws continued to surface.”

This was in keeping with his principles for responsible public service:

“Because the Environment and Public Works Committee has primary jurisdiction over the issue of global warming, I realized that as Chairman, I had a profound responsibility, as any ‘solution’ to global warming would have far-reaching impacts for our nation. That’s why from the moment I took up the gavel, I established three key principles for our work on the committee: (1) it should rely on the most objective science, (2) it should consider the costs on businesses and consumers, and (3) the bureaucracy should serve, not rule, the people.”

The Greatest Hoax chronicles Inhofe’s decade-long service on behalf of the America people, explaining in plain language the scientific research and the legislative processes whereby it has been politicized, if not bastardized, in the name of saving the planet. In The Greatest Hoax he chronicles his efforts over nearly 300 pages and documents his facts with over 400 footnotes.

But Maddow mentions none of this, either in the interview or in her blog post titled, “Inhofe refutes climate science with scripture.” So where does that title come from? Inhofe is an unapologetic Christian. He quotes scripture;

“As long as the earth remains there will be springtime and harvest, cold and heat, winter and summer, day and night.” (Genesis 8:22)

Professing evangelicals differ on environmental politics, and Inhofe’s opponents, both in the media and Congress, use that to try and bring him in line. It is in that context that the Senator references this verse from Genesis. “God is still up there,” Inhofe reminds the evangelical alarmists, “and he promised to maintain the seasons and that cold and heat would never cease as long as the earth remains.”

So, to Rachel Maddow, Inhofe is an ‘opponent of climate science.’ Not ‘an opponent of a political agenda,’ not ‘an opponent of a scientific theory,’ but ‘an opponent of climate science’ due to ‘the far-right senator’s interpretation of Scripture.’ It’s as if the interview never happened and the Scripture quotation was the only sentence she read from the book. ThinkProgress and Right Wing Watch practice similar journalistic malfeasance. Meanwhile, the good Senator does his job, unswayed by sneers and mockery.

I don’t know enough to predict the future of the planet. But I do know that when the truth comes out, two things will be clear: (1) There is a God up there who has the earth and its climate firmly in hand, and (2) Senator Inhofe’s objection to green politics is not based on his interpretation of Scripture.

This week, marvel away at the beauty of the earth. And do what you can to preserve and protect the life that lives on it. But marvel even more at its maker, who created it out of nothing and daily holds and sustains it in the palm of his hand.

To believe otherwise is to buy into an even greater hoax.

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Day of Dialogue

This Friday, April 20th, marks the annual Day of Silence, an LGBT-espousing observance in America’s public schools and now on college campuses. Day of Silence was inaugurated twelve years ago by the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GSLEN). On this day, GLSEN encourages students to “take a vow of silence to bring attention to anti-LGBT name-calling, bullying and harassment in their schools.” The idea, as Michael Brown puts it, is “standing in solidarity with LGBT youth who are silenced through bullying and harassment.” Day of Silence activities are generally coordinated through GLSEN-organized student clubs called Gay Straight Alliances (GSAs).

But are LGBTs really forced into silence?

Consider this incident that played out over recent years. Scott Savage was a librarian on Ohio State University’s Mansfield campus. As a member of the university’s First Year Reading Experience Committee in 2006, he suggested four books for consideration as freshman reading. One of them was The Marketing of Evil, by David Kupelian, which contains one chapter on homosexuality. Three professors objected to the selection, but they didn’t stop at blackballing the book. They took great umbrage with Savage himself, as their subsequent actions revealed.

Two professors filed formal sexual harassment charges against him. One wrote to the OSU-Mansfield faculty that he was, “deeply saddened – and THREATENED … You have made me fearful and uneasy being a gay man on this campus. I am, in fact, notifying the OSU-M campus, and Ohio State University in general, that I no longer feel safe doing my job. I am being harassed.” Four days later the faculty voted unanimously (with nine abstentions) to put Savage under “investigation.”

“The fact that there are one or two unhinged professors out there – that’s not news,” said David French, the lead ADF attorney defending Savage. But the fact that, by a unanimous vote with nine abstentions, the faculty would classify a book recommendation as threatening sexual harassment warranting investigation suggests exorbitant pressure to silence certain views on homosexuality.

The next question becomes, Why?

Michael Brown relates a poignant admission from a young gay blogger named Matt. As he explains in his book, A Queer Thing Happened to America, Dr. Brown had conducted a public forum devoted to the theme, “Can You Be Gay and Christian?” Local gay and gay-affirming clergy had been invited to present their views and engage in public dialogue. Many declined, but Matt had attended, and before the evening was over, he took the microphone:

“You had some very good points, and they were couched in very compassionate language, but for a person like me, throughout this whole thing, all I’m going to hear is, ‘the queers need to die.’”

This is a breathtakingly candid confession. In other words, as Dr. Brown paraphrases, “No matter what you say, and no matter how compassionately you say it, I’m still going to hear hatred coming from your lips.”

This is why certain views on homosexuality must be silenced? Notice that the complaints, “All I’m going to hear is, ‘the queers need to die,’” I am being “threatened,” and “I no longer feel safe” are not responses to any name-calling, bullying, or harassment that took place in the specific incidents which gave rise to them. They’ve either been made up in pursuit of an agenda, or they’re coming from somewhere else. In Matt’s case, they’re coming from within. Either way, there clearly is suppressive silencing going on, but it’s taking place in the name of “anti-bullying.”

Reject Silence; Let’s Talk
A peaceful, silent statement against name-calling, bullying, and harassment is a fine thing. But there’s a better option than silence. For the second year in a row, many students are doing silence one better and, without name-calling, bullying, or harassment, engaging in a Day of Dialogue by being prepared to communicate the Judeo-Christian view of sexuality. “This event helps students have an equal opportunity and a safe space to express a faith-based point of view in a loving and respectful way,” said Candi Cushman, director of Day of Dialogue. According to the Day of Dialogue website:

The Day of Dialogue gives you, as a student, the opportunity to express the true model presented by Jesus Christ in the Bible—who didn’t back away from speaking truth, but neither held back in pouring out His incredible, compassionate love for hurting and vulnerable people. His example calls us to stand up for those being harmed or bullied while offering the light of what God’s Word says.

Instead of remaining silent, an invitation is extended, Let’s talk! Teens are good at that anyway, and certainly something as important as sexuality deserves an open discussion.

“People were interested to get both sides,” said Kaitlin, a 16-year-old high school student in Michigan who participated last year. “They were open and really wondering what we had to say. God has the best purpose for us, even when we may not know it on our own.”

Yes, God has the best purpose for us. So this year consider saying No to silence, and instead, say Yes to dialogue.

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Black or White? The Sunset Limited

"Black" and "White"

“Two players. Two sides. One is light. One is dark.” The quote comes from Lost, but it’s a perfect epitaph for The Sunset Limited, a stage play by Cormac McCarthy, and now also an HBO film.

The Sunset Limited has only two characters, named simply “Black” and “White.” Early on it becomes apparent that Black had been on his way to work, waiting on the platform at the train station, when White had attempted to throw himself in front of the train. Black had caught him, stopped him, and brought him home to his apartment. The play itself consists of the two characters engaged in a verbal wrestling match for an intense ninety minutes.

White is a professional intellectual – Black calls him “Professor,” and he is clearly better at stringing the words together than Black, an ex-con and reformed murderer who lives in the ghetto in hopes of being a sort of Good Samaritan to the hopeless lost (he calls them “the junkies”).

The two debate the existence of God (Black believes; White doesn’t), the meaning of life (to Black, it’s about God; to White, there is no meaning to life), the reality of suffering (to Black, suffering is real, but has a purpose and an end; to White, all of life is vain suffering, a cruel joke, and death is the sickly sweet, desired end to it all).

Throughout it all, White has a dazed, haunted look about him. Whereas Black can break out into a raucous laughter at his own silly joke, White can only laugh the despondent, despairing cackle of a man who’s given up all hope of anything making sense.

Dialectically, Black is no match for White. But he possesses a simple wisdom about life that transcends all of White’s big words and long sentences. With obvious anguish, Black pleads with White to, “Stay with me a while,” “Let’s talk some more,” all the while hoping that White will open himself up to God and find the great relief and release that follows that simple act of the will. White won’t do it – whether he cannot or will not, it’s hard to say. In the end, it doesn’t matter. He doesn’t do it. All he wants to do is die and end his absurd, miserable, meaningless existence.

This week marks Passover, when Jews commemorate the Angel of Death passing over all the firstborn of the Jews in Egypt. At God’s command, every Jewish family sacrificed a lamb and placed the blood on their door frames. When the Angel of Death came through, he saw the blood and “passed over” their homes, but every Egyptian firstborn was slain. The following day, Moses led the Jews out of Egypt, in plain view of the Egyptians who were mourning their dead.

The events of the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy take place after all this happens. It basically consists of one long sermon from Moses to the people of Israel. If you were to summarize it in one sentence, it might go something like this: “Serve God and you will have life. Reject God, and death will have you.” Consider this sober prediction concerning the one who rejects God. “You will find no repose, no resting place for the sole of your foot. There the LORD will give you an anxious mind, eyes weary with longing, and a despairing heart. You will live in constant suspense, filled with dread both night and day, never sure of your life. In the morning you will say, ‘If only it were evening!’ and in the evening, ‘If only it were morning!’ – because of the terror that will fill your hearts and the sights that your eyes will see.”

An ‘anxious mind,’ ‘eyes weary with longing,’ and ‘a despairing heart filled with dread day and night.’ That is White. He’s rejected God, and death has him. All that’s left is for him to finish himself off, making the choice complete.

This week is also Easter, when Christians, to whom Jesus is the Passover lamb of sacrifice, celebrate the great feat of redemption, not from the physical bondage of slavery in Egypt, but from the bondage of sin and slavery to a meaningless existence. The wholly redeemed life is signified by the physical resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead which took place three days after Passover when he – the Passover lamb – was sacrificed. Life, purpose, meaning … That is Black. He has simply responded to God, acknowledged God, and he has life.

Death or life. Some things really are black and white. “Two players. Two sides. One is light. One is dark.” Which one will you choose?