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Vol. 1 No.30                                                                                                                               December 23, 2004

From the Desk of Pastor Rick Scarborough

A Special Wish – As we prepare to celebrate the birth of our Savior, allow me to take this opportunity to wish each and every one of you – and your families -- a joyous, peaceful and uplifting Christmas. Please keep our troops in the field in your thoughts and prayers.


Sadly, the White House has succumbed to the drive to make Christmas “inoffensive.” It’s not what we would have expected from this administration.

In its Christmas message, the White House website does not contain a word about Jesus.

It notes that the president’s residence is decorated with “delightful vignettes illustrating many of the best-loved songs of the season.” But they are all secular tunes like “Here Comes Santa Claus,” “Jingle Bells” and “White Christmas.” There’s not one traditional Christmas carol in the bunch – not one has lyrics that even allude to the fact that Christ is the “reason for the season.”

At the lighting of the National Christmas Tree, on December 2, the president was equally restrained: “At Christmas-time, we celebrate good tidings first announced two thousand years ago, and still a source of great joy in our world,” Mr. Bush declared. And what was that message, Mr. President: Shop ‘till you drop? Have a “Happy Holiday”? Watch out for that reindeer, grandma?

Mr. Bush’s holiday card includes a line from Psalms, 95:2 (“Let us come before Him with Thanksgiving, and extol Him with music and song’), but – again -- no mention of the one George Bush worships as Lord and Savior.

The president is a devout Christian. (During the 2000 campaign, when asked to name his favorite philosopher, Mr. Bush unhesitatingly replied “Jesus.”) It’s disheartening that a man of faith like our president apparently feels he has to placate the reining cultural ethos (where Christians are expected to keep their faith in the closet) lest someone be offended.

We have much to do, and far to go, in reclaiming Christmas for Christ.


A poll of 1,100 physicians on religion has surprising results. Of medical doctors surveyed, 74% said they believe miracles have happened in the past, and 73% believe they can occur today.

This is not what you’d expect of men of science. Physicians are thought to be among the most skeptical of individuals.

Yet the poll (conducted by HCD Research and the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York) included doctors from almost every religious tradition in the United States. Among other findings: 55% said medical practice should be guided by religious teachings, 46% said prayer is an important part of their lives, and 58% attend religious services at least once a month.

Less encouraging is the fact that only 9% believe the Bible is the literal word of God, though 58% believe God inspired Scriptures. Thirty-four percent consider the Bible a wholly human work.

Perhaps the findings aren’t so surprising after all. Physicians experience birth and death on a regular basis. They see inexplicable cures – which are called “miraculous.” It’s harder to deny God when you witness his handiwork up close and personal.


The Neosho, Missouri Board of Education decided to remove the Old and New Testaments from a list of approved material for the district’s accelerated reading program.

Parents Chuck and Mary Alice Nelson donated the Bible and related reading material to the school library, but discovered it had been removed from the system. It’s important to note that the Bible was on a list of optional reading. It wasn’t forced on anyone.

Still, despite the fact that approved reading includes the “Harry Potter” books (written to make witchcraft attractive) and the works of Stephen King, Superintendent Mark Mitchell said the district decided to “err on the side of caution,” and ban the Bible for fear of “an excessive entanglement of church and state.”


In the school system, no one was assigned to read the Bible. No one was forced to read the word of God. It was completely optional. Besides everything else, the King James Bible happens to be one of the most beautifully written books in the English language. Students can learn far more about the use of language, about syntax and grammar, from a work that has topped the best-sellers’ list for thousands of years, than from the pap produced by children’s authors.

The Founding Fathers, who revered the Scriptures, would have been flabbergasted to learn that in the nation they established, the Bible as optional reading is “too controversial,” but the lurid fantasies of the likes of Stephen King are quite acceptable – even more that the availability of a Bible in a school is now considered the equivalent of an established church.

The board is expected to reconsider this tragic decision at its January meeting. Let’s hope it finds the wisdom to transcend the anti-religious hysteria rampant in our public education establishment.

School-board members might want to pray over it.


Christians were bitterly disappointed when Senate Republicans chose Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter to head the powerful Judiciary Committee, over vehement protests.

Specter is about as liberal as a Republican can get. He’s pro-abortion and a gay-rights supporter. If that weren’t bad enough, in an interview following the election, Specter brazenly declared that judicial nominees who weren’t willing to kowtow to Roe v. Wade, could not be confirmed.

Apparently, Republicans heard the rumblings of discontent among religious conservatives. According to Tuesday’s Washington Post, Senators Sam Brownback and Tom Coburn have been named to the committee.

Dr. Coburn is an obstetrician and a knowledgeable defender of the unborn. Sen. Brownback is a proven leader of pro-life causes. Both should help to balance the committee’s doctrinaire liberals.

Naturally, the left is incensed. Nancy Keenan, president of the National Abortion Rights Action League – which works tirelessly to keep murder in the womb legal – warned, “It appears the far right is massing its troops on the borders of Roe v. Wade.”

Ralph Neas, of the knee-jerk People for the American Way, commented, “Its hard to believe the Senate Judiciary Committee could go any farther right, but it just did.” Neas neglected to mention that, on the other side, the Judiciary Committee includes such dogmatic leftists as Senators Kennedy, Schumer and Leahy -- while its chairman is a Republican in name only.

At least with Brownback and Coburn on the committee, conservative/constitutionalist judicial nominees will have a few friends in the lions’ den.


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