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Surviving the Fire

High Park fire, Larimer County, CO (2012), Author US Air Force, Source, (PD as work of federal govt.)

Read the blogs of child abuse victims and those concerned for them.  Somewhere along the line, you will find mention of what the abuse damaged or destroyed outright.

Our innocence.  Our childhood.  Our peace of mind.  Our self-confidence.  Our self-esteem.  Our ability to trust.  Our capacity to select loving partners, and sustain healthy relationships.  Our faith.  Our voice.

And from far too many, the abuse took their very lives.

For many of us, what the abuse left behind was isolation, grief, anxiety, depression, rage, and a permanent sense of violation.

Unfortunately, that we will never be the women (or men) we might have been is not helpful information.  We are who we are…marked by these scars.

In some sense, the scars are our badges – if not of honor exactly, then certainly not of shame.  We were the ones sinned against, not the ones sinning, no matter how we were made to feel about the torture inflicted upon us.

As with the veteran who has lost a limb to war or the woman who has lost a breast to cancer, this is simply our reality now.

No single statement can characterize us all, except that we were blameless.

Some of us were victimized by priests; others, by family members or strangers.  Some of us pressed criminal charges against our abusers; some chose to remain (or were forced to remain) silent, sometimes for decades.

Some of us lived in denial, maintaining a painful status quo in our attempt to protect loved ones.  Some of us fled to the streets, from one kind of horror to another.  Some changed sexes or became sex addicts.  A few fled from sex, itself.

Some of us forgave; some never will.

The abuse did not make us bad citizens, bad neighbors, bad employees, or bad friends. Many of us became high achievers, first at school and later at work.

A surprising number of us have found a strength we did not realize we had.  We have found a way to use our anger to fuel the struggle against abuse and injustice; use our pain as a subject for art and literature.

A surprising number of us have reclaimed our joy.  We remember the past, but choose to focus on the present.

Somehow we managed to survive the onslaught against our hearts, minds, souls, and bodies.  Whether by luck or fate, intestinal fortitude or grace, we survived the fire.  We are here and entitled to live our lives.

Originally posted 10/19/14


7 Types Of Bondage In Egypt! Part-1

February 13, 2020 hepsibahgarden

I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Exodus‬ ‭20:2‬

These were the words of the Lord God, to the children of Israel, after they were delivered from Egypt; from the hands of Pharoah. Egypt symbolises the sinful evil world and Pharoah refers to the prince of this world, the devil. The Israelites were in slavery under the King of Egypt for 430 years. During this time they cried out to God for help to be delivered from his hand. Hearing their cry God sent Moses and delivered them out of Egypt with His out-stretched arm.

However the Israelites, even after coming out of Egypt and moving on with their journey to the Promised Land, showed signs of still being in bondage (natures of Egypt) during the course of their journey. It was true they were out of Egypt, but still had Egypt in them.


1. Bondage of eating and drinking – The Israelites would always complain about – FOOD. While in Egypt during their slavery, they got to eat fish🐟 , leeks, cucumbers 🥒, garlic🧄, 🍉 melons, onion 🧅 etc freely. Numbers 11:5. But in the wilderness there was nothing except the manna that God rained daily for them. They had forgotten that Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceedeth from the mouth of God. Mathew 4:4. Romans 14:17.

2. Bondage of men – Jesus bought us for Himself with a great price – He purchased us by shedding His precious Blood; we need to be bond servants to God alone! Nevertheless, when we favour one person over the other and not love everyone equally, we begin becoming servants to men. Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men. 1 Corinthians‬ ‭7:23‬ ‭Our sacrifices must be fully pure – For and To God Alone.

3. Bondage of money – Judas Iscariot sold Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. Even before Judas betrayed Jesus, referring to him Jesus mentioned it would have been good had Judas never been born. The Israelites had a law stating – if a servant was bought with money, he had to be circumcised. Then he was ready to eat from his master’s household. Exodus 12:44. This was to avoid having the love of money in them because the love of money is the root of all evil. 1 Timothy 6:10. Gehazi, prophet Elijah’s servant lost his ministry because of this very bondage.

(To be continued…)


Original here

Christian Charity CEO: Trump Admin’s Religious Freedom Alliance a Good Start to Battling ‘the Issue of Our Time’

David Curry, CEO of Open Doors (courtesy Open Doors), a Christian charity group.


The U.S. State Department’s launch of a global coalition to defend religious freedom is a “good first step” in countering a mounting wave of repression against both the faithful and those who choose not to worship, David Curry, the CEO of the Christian aid group Open Doors, told Breitbart News.

Curry, whose charity focuses on helping oppressed Christians and tracks persecution trends through the annual publication of its World Watch List, added that religious persecution is “the issue of our time” and present in nearly every conflict area in the world.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced the establishment of the International Religious Freedom Alliance this month, a coalition of 27 countries around the globe that have committed to a set of principles that include both the respect for the freedom of conscience of their citizens and the advocacy for religious freedom abroad. On the list are nations representing North and South America, Africa, Europe, and the Middle East, including Senegal, Ukraine, Israel, Albania, and Brazil, among others.

“The formation of the Alliance marks the first time in history an international coalition has come together at a national leadership level to push the issue of religious freedom forward around the world. Egregious perpetrators of religious persecution have long operated with impunity,” Pompeo said in a statement announcing the move. “The Alliance will unify powerful nations and leverage their resources to stop bad actors and advocate for the persecuted, the defenseless, and the vulnerable. The threats to religious freedom are global. They require global participation and global solutions.”

The principles the alliance has signed onto include respecting international law on individual freedom of conscience, specifically, “freedom of thought, conscience, and religion or belief, including the right to hold any faith or belief, or none at all, and the freedom to change faith.”

Given that many of these nations – the United Kingdom, Colombia, and others – are not locations considered significantly dangerous for people of faith or those defying the majority belief system, perhaps more powerful is the commitment in the list of principles to publicly demand respect for religious freedom.

“The Alliance intends to advocate for freedom of religion or belief for all, which includes the right of individuals to hold any belief or none, to change religion or belief and to manifest religion or belief, either alone or in community with others, in worship, observance, practice, and teaching,” the text of the Declaration of Principles reads. “The Alliance is intended to bring together senior government representatives to discuss actions their nations can take together to promote respect for freedom of religion or belief and protect members of religious minority groups worldwide.”

“Every country on that list could still make progress on protecting religious freedom, all these founding members, but I think what’s hopeful is that these countries have agreed on a framework to form these core principles and I think that the discussion of it and the raising of the standard is a good first step,” Curry told Breitbart News in an interview Thursday. “I think it highlights the fact that this is a growing concern of many countries around the world. There’s a continued restriction and intolerance towards not just the practice of Christianity but any faith around the world. This is the issue of our time as it relates to a lot of chaos around the world.”

Curry noted that religious intolerance is common in conflicted, impoverished, or authoritarian regions of the world, nearly always accompanying other human rights atrocities.

“I think governments in the past have seen religious liberty as maybe a partisan issue. I would hope that people are beginning to see – with all these crises around the world, ISIS, al-Qaeda, what’s happening in Burkina Faso – they’re beginning to see the role that intolerance has played in other larger social issues,” he explained.

“I’ve always said that religious freedom is the canary in the coal mine,” he continued. “It’s the first thing you’ll notice when something is going amiss in areas about ready to tip over into chaos, whether that’s northern Nigeria or Iraq and Syria or anywhere else. … Where you have an area where there’s mayhem … you will always have religious liberty issues.”

Curry predicted that the alliance’s efforts would, in the long term, convince some governments that have remained neutral or negative on religious freedom to shift their priorities and defending the individual rights of their citizens. World governments, he added, have a responsibility to defend these freedoms and strip their laws of discrimination based on faith or lack thereof.

“Civil society has a role to play, government has a role to play in creating environments where people can practice their faith or choose not to practice a faith without fear of pressure, oppression, being imprisoned, being attacked by other groups,” Curry said. “We need civil government to pass the kinds of laws that allow people to change their mind or change their faith if they so choose as an adult to do that, or to decide that they want to be an atheist – I think these are things that civil government has to do.”

According to the 2020 edition of Open Doors’ World Watch List, 260 million Christians are currently living under “high levels of oppression” – facing war, terrorism, discriminatory laws, and mob violence, among other threats. North Korea, a totalitarian communist state that forces citizens to worship dictator Kim Jong-un and his family, topped the list as the world’s most repressive country for Christians. The list noted increasing levels of violence against Christians in much of Africa – particularly Burkina Faso, which did not appear on the 2019 list – and a decrease in Iraq and Syria as a result of the collapse of the Islamic State.

Follow Frances Martel on Facebook and Twitter.

What’s in a Name?

January 29, 2020 Nehemiah Zion

Off the three things in the world that God says not to love, one of them is pride of life. We know God hates pride, number one in a list of seven mentioned in Proverbs 6:16-19.

Every worldly person wants to be famous or at least have a reputation (name). The outcome of all of (worldly) man’s endeavor’s on earth is to make a name for himself, to be known and recognized.

After all, Lucifer wanted to make a name for himself even though he was already a top angel. Sadly, it is never enough for those who are self-seeking. They always want more, and eventually fall prey to their devices. Similarly man, finds himself in utter shame and loneliness after the relentless pursuit of a name.

Governments, Companies and celebrities all have Reputation Officers or handlers (Public Relations & Social Media personnel) employed to protect their identity and status. So many Churches and Pastors have fallen because of fame and name. Churches today are building themselves as a Brand and making celebrities of their pastors and youth leaders, not a great idea.

You don’t need dynamic people to attract lost souls to the Kingdom of God. You need Christ to attract lost souls to the Kingdom of God. Believers filled with the Holy Ghost. The only name that matters is, Jesus Christ. Name above all names!

“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” ‭‭Galatians‬ ‭2:20‬ ‭

Christ makes us dynamic. The preaching of the gospel is not with the wisdom of words lest the cross of Christ is made of none effect (1 Corinthians 1:17). Paul further states he did not come with excellency of speech or of wisdom in 1 Corinthians 2:1. When it’s about our eloquence it stops being about God. If we aren’t Spirit-led then it will become about us. The elite Jews marveled at the power packed conduct of Peter and John at the Temple called Beautiful. Did they heal him? No, Peter filled with the Holy Spirit, makes the most of glorifying Jesus.

There are many apostles, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and missionaries who are doing amazing work for the glory of God. They have one thing in common – a hunger and thirst to see lives transformed for the glory of God. It’s never about numbers for them. It never was! It was and will always be about the will of God. Jesus, our example, came to do the Fathers will.

What is the primary need for people who preach or teach? Preach the gospel – The blood of Jesus. Christ must be revealed, not the preacher. It’s not always possible to separate the two, but the preacher must be focused on shunning the limelight, like Peter at the Temple. Spiritual pride is most dangerous.

“But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.” ‭‭Galatians‬ ‭6:14‬ ‭

I’ll end with an incident a pastor once narrated. After giving the sermon and wrapping up the service, a believer approached the pastor saying, “the preaching was superb, what a great preaching!” The pastor responded saying, “Before you came someone already commended me for my preaching – the devil.” The Pastor rejected any praise lauded on him because he was only doing what God asked him to, and only God deserved the praise and glory.

HE alone is worthy.

“Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.” (Revelation 4:11)

Original here

What Is Distracting You From Sitting At The Feet Of Jesus? Let’s Not Miss It!

February 5, 2020 The Godly Chic Diaries

One reason we are so harried and hurried is that we make yesterday and tomorrow our business, when all that legitimately concerns us is today. If we really have too much to do, there are some items on the agenda which God did not put there. Let us submit the list to Him and ask Him to indicate which items we must delete. There is always time to do the will of God . If we are too busy to do that, we are too busy — Elisabeth Elliot

I have found that hurriedness and busyness are the enemy’s best kept distraction from God. And when I feast my eyes on a busy schedule (my to-do list), I find that I lose HIM in the motions of everyday, and pursuing the Lord gets lost in the robotic rhythm of monotony of the whichevers and whatevers. It’s when I cannot take a moment of gratitude in prayer or peace – because of a need to cross out the next to-do — that running too fast becomes a rain cloud on a restful moment — Relatable? I love the scripture John 14: 27 as Jesus says, “Peace I give you. I do not give as the world gives.” The loud voices of the world pressure us to keep running, achieving, performing. Yet, if you stop and listen to Gods word – theres an assurance of peace you can’t find anywhere else. Amen!

Martha was cooking up a storm in the kitchen – trying to time the meat, vegetables and bread, all to be ready at the same time. She set the table, filled the cups, folded the cloth napkins and arranged fresh flowers. As she worked, she grew increasingly frustrated and annoyed by her sister, Mary who seemed to be doing nothing at all….

“Her sister, Mary sat at the Lords feet, listening to what he taught. But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come help me.’ But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing to be concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:39-42)

Like Mary and Martha let’s not be so tempted to do FOR God that we neglect the good work of sitting WITH God. If you find yourself so overwhelmed that you cannot hear, or cannot seem to find time to meet with God. Do some heart searching. Anything that keeps you away from him is worth re-evaluating. Be near Him today! Smile, this one’s on HIM!❤ Amen! God bless.💕

Blessings and Love…😊🙏❤

VIDEO Rep. Lesko: ERA ‘Would Be Used by Pro-Abortion Groups to Undo Pro-Life Laws’

By Susan Jones | February 13, 2020


( – The House of Representatives on Thursday debated a resolution that would remove the deadline for ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment, which simply reads: “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.”

But Republicans argue the amendment has nothing to do with equal rights: it’s all about protecting abortion.

During the floor debate, Rep. Debbie Lesko (R-Ariz.) argued that the ERA is “not necessary” since women’s equality of rights under the law is already recognized in the 5th and 14th Amendments to the Constitution.

And she had another major objection:

If ratified, the ERA would be used by pro-abortion groups to undo pro-life legislation and lead to more abortions and taxpayer funding of abortions. But don’t take my word for it. Let’s look at what pro-abortion groups have done and what they say:

In 1998, the New Mexico Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the state’s ERA required the state to fund abortions. NARAL Pro-Choice America which supports abortions, asserted that the ERA would reinforce the constitutional right to abortion and require judges to strike down anti-abortion laws. In a 2019 letter to the House Judiciary Committee, the ACLU stated the Equal Rights Amendment could provide an additional layer of protection against restrictions on abortion.

In conclusion, this bill is unconstitutional; the ERA is unnecessary since constitutional federal, state and local laws already guarantee equal protections; and the ERA, if ratified, would be used by pro-abortion groups to undo pro-life laws.

Congress passed the proposed constitutional amendment in 1972, but it wasn’t until Democrats took control of the Virginia Legislature this year that the ERA received the required support of three-quarters of the states.

However, the 1972 congressional resolution contained a seven-year deadline, later extended to 1982, for getting the necessary 38 states to ratify the amendment.

Meanwhile, five states have “unratified” the amendment in the intervening years.

On Thursday, Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) noted that the deadline imposed by Congress was not part of the actual amendment but was contained in the resolution passing the amendment. “If Congress can set a deadline, it can remove a deadline,” Nadler said.

But ranking member of the Judiciary Committee Doug Collins (R-Ga.) said the current resolution is an “end-run” to get around the fact that the ERA’s ratification deadline has come and gone.

The chief sponsor of the resolution removing the deadline for ERA ratification is Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), who told her colleagues on Thursday that “women are fed up.”

“I rise today because the women of America are done being second class citizens. We are done being paid less for our work; done being violated with impunity; done being discriminated against for our pregnancies; done being discriminated against simply because we are women,” Speier said.

“The ERA is about equality. The ERA is about sisterhood, motherhood, survival, dignity, and respect.”

Speier said the “outrage” expressed by The Women’s March, the Me-Too Movement, and the Pink Wave “is because we have been disrespected, devalued and diminished in our society. And we are fed up.”

“Faith and reason are mutually reinforcing”

November 2019 • Volume 48, Number 11 • Clarence Thomas

Clarence Thomas
Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court

Hillsdale College held a dedication ceremony for its new Christ Chapel on October 3, 2019, during a two-day gala to celebrate the College’s 175th anniversary. The following are excerpts from the dedication address. A video of the dedication ceremony may be viewed online at

This is a very special occasion—the 175th anniversary of Hillsdale and the dedication of Christ Chapel. This beautiful Chapel is a culmination of years of generosity, planning, and hard work. And the end result is at once stunning and glorious.

The Chapel’s enduring beauty highlights the transcendence, the sovereignty, and the grace of God. It truly illustrates how architectural design can reflect the character of God and evoke a sense of reverence for His majesty.

Everyone involved in the financing, planning, and construction of this Chapel should rightly be proud. It is a magnificent accomplishment. But we’ve gathered here today not just to admire this beautiful Chapel—we have gathered here to dedicate it.

The word dedicate in this context means “to set apart and consecrate to a deity or to a sacred purpose.” To dedicate this Chapel appropriately, then, it is worthwhile to reflect on the purposes for which we are setting apart this sacred place on a college campus.

The primary purpose of a chapel is to provide a place where man can enter the presence of God. It provides a sanctuary in which man can withdraw from the chaos of our world and seek a sacred stillness. For as Elijah learned on Mount Horeb, God so often comes to us not in the storms, not in the earthquakes or fires of life, but in stillness—in a “gentle whisper.”

Accordingly, men and women have long sought respite from the noise and commotion of daily life, where they can “be still, and know that [He is] God,” where they can seek an inner calm and a transcendent peace. Beautiful chapels, such as this one, provide that sacred space for stillness, a place for an encounter with the Divine. As the architect of this Chapel has written, “When you enter a church, it is as if you are entering through a gateway from the profane toward the sacred.”

It is difficult to overstate the significance of the role that this Chapel will play in the life of Hillsdale College.


Although a chapel is a place for many activities, it also serves as a statement about the importance of those activities. The construction of a college chapel, in particular, is a public declaration that faith and reason are mutually reinforcing. And in 2019, the construction of a chapel is a bold act of leadership at a crucial time in our nation’s history. So I would like to underscore briefly the broader significance of the decision that Hillsdale College has made in building Christ Chapel.

Beginning in the early 1900s, many elite private colleges and universities began to face questions about the continuing relevance of religious instruction on campus. These questions would have surprised the founders of those schools, many of which were created in part for the express purpose of providing religious instruction. But as time went on and as schools moved away from their religious roots, the relevance of religion to higher education was increasingly questioned, and campus chapels, in particular, came to be viewed as relics of a bygone era.

With the completion of Christ Chapel, Hillsdale College has staked out its position in this debate, and its decision serves as an example for all of us. The construction of so grand a chapel in 2019 does not happen by accident or as an afterthought. Christ Chapel reflects the College’s conviction that a vibrant intellectual environment and a strong democratic society are fostered, not hindered, by a recognition of the Divine. Hillsdale College affirms, with the writer of Proverbs, that, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.”

By constructing this Chapel, the College upholds the continued importance of its Christian roots, even as it respects the rights of each person to worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience. Our country was founded on the view that a correct understanding of the nature of God and the human person is critical to preserving the liberty that we so enjoy.

John Adams wrote, “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious People. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” He recognized that the preservation of liberty is not guaranteed. Without the guardrails supplied by religious conviction, popular sovereignty can devolve into mob rule, unmoored from any conception of objective truth.

As I think about our political culture today, I am reminded of Ronald Reagan’s warning that, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. The only way they can inherit the freedom we have known is if we fight for it, protect it, defend it, and then hand it on to them . . . [to] do the same.”

Each generation is responsible both to itself and to succeeding generations for preserving and promoting the blessings of liberty. Faith in God, more than anything else, fuels the strength of character and self-discipline needed to discharge ably that responsibility. That is why I am so encouraged by the construction of Christ Chapel.

Hillsdale College’s Articles of Association affirm that “inestimable blessings” flow from “the prevalence of civil and religious liberty and intelligent piety in the land.” The College was founded on the belief that “the diffusion of sound learning is essential to the perpetuity of these blessings.” Thus Hillsdale College was founded on the understanding that the battle to preserve and promote freedom in our country will be waged in the hearts and minds of the people.

Rather than shrinking from the battle, Hillsdale is rising to the occasion by investing in the intellectual and spiritual development of its students, so they can provide God-honoring leadership in our country. Let it be said of them what was said of David, that he “served the counsel of God in his own generation.”

Students, faculty, administrators, and friends of Hillsdale, let this Chapel be more than just an impressive building. Let it be a place where people enter the presence of a majestic God. Let it be a house of worship, of prayer, of meditation, and of celebration before God. Let it be a haven of rest for the weary, a place of healing for the wounded, a place of comfort for the grieving, and a source of hope for the despairing and forgotten.

Let it point to a day when “the dwelling of God” will be “with men,” when God himself will “wipe away every tear” and mend every wound. Let it be a place where tomorrow’s leaders discern their callings and grow firm in their convictions. Let it stand as a bold declaration to a watching world that faith and learning are rightly understood as complements, and that both are essential to the preservation of the blessings of liberty.

Let this Chapel equip and inspire us to honor God in whatever He calls us to do. For as Saint Paul wrote in his Letter to the Romans, “From Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen.”

May God bless each of you. May God bless Hillsdale. And may God bless this wonderful country.

Original here


Four Pillars: Educating for America

December 2019 • Volume 48, Number 12 • Larry P. Arnn


Larry P. Arnn
President, Hillsdale College

Larry P. Arnn is the twelfth president of Hillsdale College. He received his B.A. from Arkansas State University and his M.A. and Ph.D. in government from the Claremont Graduate School. From 1977 to 1980, he also studied at the London School of Economics and at Worcester College, Oxford University, where he served as director of research for Martin Gilbert, the official biographer of Winston Churchill. From 1985 until his appointment as president of Hillsdale College in 2000, he was president of the Claremont Institute for the Study of Statesmanship and Political Philosophy. He is the author of Liberty and Learning: The Evolution of American EducationThe Founders’ Key: The Divine and Natural Connection Between the Declaration and the Constitution; and Churchill’s Trial: Winston Churchill and the Salvation of Free Government.

The following is adapted from a speech delivered on December 6, 2019, during a Christmas Open House at Hillsdale College’s Allan P. Kirby, Jr. Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship in Washington, D.C.

This Fall at Hillsdale College, we did something strange, stranger than if we had found a unicorn and built a zoo to show it off. We celebrated, with a whole heart, the founding of our College 175 years ago. Yes, most of our founders were white. Yes, most of them were male. All of them are now dead. What can we be thinking, to celebrate people like that in this day and age?

There are two reasons, one particular and one general.

The particular one has to do with these founders themselves. They were human, sure enough, but they were very good humans. The earliest of them were classically educated New England preachers. They thought liberal education was the road to good living, good citizenship, and good statesmanship. They thought to get this liberal education it is better to read the classic books in the classic languages, Greek and Latin, and those were prerequisites for admission to the College.

These founders were patriots. The first line of the College’s Articles of Association of 1844 commits the College to perpetuating the “inestimable blessings” of “civil and religious liberty and intelligent piety.” We obscure the fact these days that the Americans who founded our country were mostly Christians, and they were devoted to both civil and religious liberty with the same intensity that they held their faith. They thought that the Christian religion, the first universal religion not to provide government to the faithful, would therefore have to be practiced in many countries—and that those countries should provide for the right to do so, or else be wrong. Claiming that right for themselves, they also respected it for others. “Do as you would be done by.”

These founders thought that liberal education should cultivate the practice of the moral alongside the intellectual virtues. College is about thinking, and the refinement and informing of the intellect is its first purpose. This requires in turn the education of the whole human being. Humans not only think, but also do. Their doing and their thinking work together to form their characters. If their characters are not courageous, moderate, and just, then not only will they be craven in action, but their thinking will be impaired.

These founders thought that liberal education required thinking about God, known to reason and in philosophy as the perfection of all being, known to these founders’ faith as Jesus Christ. They followed the classics in thinking that all of our judgments of good and bad, better and worse, implies some standard that is complete or perfect. In philosophy properly pursued, the subject of God cannot be neglected. Their Christian faith was grounded partly in the fact that the Christian God, of all revealed deities, is the most open to thinking.

These founders believed in freedom. They were grateful, as I say, for the inestimable blessings of civil and religious freedom. These two kinds of freedom were combined and wholly supported for the first time in America. These founders were proud of this fact. They dedicated the oldest building on our campus, still standing, on the Fourth of July with a speech about freedom and learning. They respected both the Declaration of Independence and its partner, the Constitution. In their noble and significant opposition to human slavery, they helped to devise the platform upon which Abraham Lincoln was elected president. That platform called for an end to slavery by constitutional means only, specifically to bring an end to it by forbidding it to spread any further into the vast area not yet incorporated as states. And when the Civil War came, no college had a nobler record: our campus was emptied of young men. Several dozens of them would fight with distinction at Gettysburg. Three would win the Congressional Medal of Honor.

These are the four chief elements, the four pillars, of the founding of Hillsdale College: learning, character, faith, and freedom. The College’s founders saw these things not as items on a discrete list, but as a description of the complete human being and of the well-lived human life. Of course colleges proceed by argument, evidence, and proof, and here at Hillsdale we argue about anything, including these elements. We preserve them as well because they lay the ground for that argument, for its continuing civility and probity, for the advancement of learning, and for the preservation of the freedom to do it. They are a prescription for civilization.

I will say personally that these four elements brought me to Hillsdale in the year 2000. I had avoided all employment in colleges for the first two decades of my adult life. I did not think that colleges were a good place to serve, given what most of them had become. But I came upon Hillsdale’s founding document, and I thought it beautiful. I noticed that it was written by people who served in the cause of Lincoln. I reflected that Lincoln, and also (to name the best examples) Churchill and Washington, were able to command allegiance, not to themselves, but to a cause. They could describe this cause in beautiful language. They could make themselves a conspicuous example of obedience to it. Only then could they legitimately ask others to join them. Of course I can look up at them “only at a steep angle” (to quote the great Mark Helprin). But their example shows the way.

These elements are also principles. The word “principle” comes from an old word that means first. When we speak of the principle of a thing, we think of how it began. Yet it has to mean more than that. If a thing changes its principle, then there is a new “first” and therefore a new thing. That is why when we think of principle, we think not only of the beginning, but also of the essential something that makes a thing what it is. Principle means first but also essence. Thinking like this, we felt that we could celebrate the beginnings of the College with a whole heart. The beginning was good, and it has been the same College all the time since, despite many changes. If the College were not the same in principle, then it could not be 175 years old, and there could be no celebration.

The principle or essence of a college begins with the fact that it is a partnership, a kind of community. That is what the word “college” means. Communities are grounded directly in the essential element of human nature, reason, which is a synonym for speech. We are the thinking beings, and we can share our thoughts by talking.

Any kind of close community can be a college, but chiefly the word denotes an institution of higher learning. Higher learning is not learning about means but ends. Ends are higher than means, and the highest ends are the best and most beautiful to know. Such ends are indicated in authoritative American use by the expression, “the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God.” That phrase is used in the Declaration of Independence to justify the nation itself. In a simple way, the expression refers only to the things we know by reason. But nature is a pregnant word, and so is God, and so is law. To learn deeply the meaning of those words requires years of study of the greatest books, old and new.

This is what our College was founded to do, and what it does still. That is the particular reason for our celebration of our founding and of our founders.


The general reason for our celebration can be seen in the nature and ground of the contemporary aversion to such things. What are the objections?

In former times, the most thoughtful people valued the old or the new only insofar as they gave a clue to the eternal and transcendent. In seeking the transcendent, they believed that old things did have a certain dignity on their face: they have the advantage of persistence, which is one part of virtue. Things that have been thought good for a long time are worthy of attention, respect, and study. New things are harder to judge. Nonetheless, both old and new things must meet the test of permanence and transcendence.

To the modern ear, that sounds antiquated. Today the theme is not permanence, but change; not transcendence, but presence. Change is the master key to everything. Change can be eternal only in the sense that everything changes. But if everything changes, nothing is permanent, and nothing is transcendent. Today we are trying to make a transcendent good out of the one thing that cannot transcend.

These doctrines, growing up in modern philosophy, have had disastrous effects upon the academic world. Colleges can barely, if at all, preserve the civility to think and talk. Rather than partnerships, they become increasingly collections of hostile identity groups, each clamoring against the crimes of the other. Students are not invited to step outside themselves, to step outside their own time, and to look at things as they have been understood by the best over time. If they did that, they would find that the great books are not a parade of agreements but attempts to approximate truth that frequently differ from one another. They would see that some are more successful than others, and they would then learn and grow not by invention but by discovery.

This departure from the old idea of a college is having disastrous effects in politics, too. Recall that our liberty in the Declaration of Independence is justified by a rational standard, the “self-evident” truth that “all men are created equal.” This means a sort of tautology: all men are men. This simple observation gives rise to a world of consequences: one may govern a horse or another kind of beast without the consent of that being. Horses are not capable of giving consent. But one may not govern human beings without consent. This is a thing recognizable by ordinary human common sense.

Americans have enjoyed more freedom and justice for more people, and for a longer time, than any people. A major reason for that is the dignity and compelling nature of the principles in the Declaration of Independence. If freedom and equality are established in the nature of things, then they may not be violated rightly by anyone, even if he is the King of England or the totalitarian dictator of Germany. These people may be powerful, but they cannot be in the right.

If, on the other hand, everything is change, who can say that new purposes of government might not arise and that a new status for the human being might be found? We live in the age of technology. Technology comes from two old words that mean knowing how to make. If technology is the ultimate standard, then the society itself becomes an engineering project, of which we become the subjects. Here, recall that Hillary Clinton has famously spoken of “redefin[ing] who we are as human beings in this post-modern age.”

We are facing a situation like the ones our forebears faced in the American Revolution and the Civil War. The claim in the first was that some or one, specifically King George III, is born to rule others. The claim in the second was that some of one skin color are born to rule others. These were abnegations of the Declaration of Independence, which means that the divisions in the land were deep—as they are again today.

Modern liberalism in America begins with two ideas: one, everything is change; two, we should use science to get control of the process of change and make the society into what we want it to be. This is the engineering project that has significantly changed the way we are governed. It threatens to change our way of life decisively and for all time.

To put these points in the language of classical philosophy, the Declaration of Independence states the final causes—which means ultimate purposes—of America. Something must be added to that in order to keep freedom safe. There must be a constitution, which is a form of government. There must be established rules by which citizens give their consent. These must be somewhat flexible, but more than that they need to provide a stable and abiding structure. This is the formal cause of any government—it is what any government looks like. The form or formal cause of our government is the Constitution of the United States, which provides long-term rules for how we go about giving our consent. It is the most successful document of its kind ever written.

Today, the form of our government is fundamentally altered—the Constitution has been largely replaced with an alternative form. The simplest way to explain the alteration is also the key to the whole situation: the great majority of our laws at the federal level are not made by Congress anymore. This means that the people we elect to make the laws delegate that work to someone else. Actually they delegate it to many people, collected in independent executive agencies numbering about 150. These agencies make a very great number of laws, and there is no ready way for the people to correct those laws. Those who founded our nation and the thinkers upon whom they drew believed that such an arrangement would destroy the accountability of the government to the people, and therefore destroy the ground of government by consent.

In recent years these developments have taken a new and dangerous turn. Today we know that people in law enforcement and intelligence at the federal level have acted in partisan ways. We know this because they have said so. Meanwhile the president is accused of obstruction of justice—for a time he was accused of this because he told the director of the FBI what to do. But where does the director of the FBI get his authority? He works for the attorney general, and the attorney general works for the president, with the consent of the Senate for his appointment only. The authority of those who hold these unelected offices is made legitimate by the fact that they are under the control of people who are elected. But is it clear any longer that the holders of these offices understand this? If the modern idea is correct—if it is true that experts should rule in order to guide us scientifically toward a better future—then maybe the unelected people who hold these offices are more legitimate than the president and the Senate.

That is where we are headed. What to do? As long as we still have free elections, the key, as usual, is understanding.


Hillsdale’s Four Pillars Campaign, launched this Fall in conjunction with the College’s 175th anniversary, is named for the four purposes of our mission—learning, character, faith, and freedom. The money will go to improve our pursuit of these things on the campus and make that pursuit radiate across the country on behalf of liberty.

Hillsdale decided several decades ago to share what we do and learn. Just as at the founding of the College, we have sought to benefit, as we benefit from, our fellow citizens. Imprimis was sent free of charge to about 1,000 households and businesses when it began 47 years ago. The number had reached 900,000 when I arrived 20 years ago. It will soon rise to over five million.

Hillsdale offers online courses and makes them available, free of charge, to any citizen wishing to learn. Already we have well over two million online students, and we are confident that this will be a mighty engine to help us reach many millions more.

We now have 23 Hillsdale-affiliated classical charter schools in eleven states, as well as two private schools operating under Hillsdale guidelines and with Hillsdale’s assistance. These schools have 15,000 students enrolled and 7,500 students on wait lists. New schools are opening each year, and we can’t find teachers and principals fast enough to meet the demand.

In an age of confusion that has become dangerous, Hillsdale offers the only thing that can ultimately dispel it: understanding. It was to provide that understanding that the College was born 175 years ago. God and our many friends around the country have been providing us the means to do so on an increasingly large scale. We will continue to work tirelessly, and with our fellow citizens we are determined to save our Constitution and our country.

We at Hillsdale College have not found a unicorn, but something infinitely more valuable. Not human completion, but the lamp by which to seek wisdom and the reason to strive for courage and all the moral virtues. Not comprehension of the divine, but a way to think about God and understand Him better. Seeing our freedom in danger, we have found a way to justify it against the mighty powers that gather in opposition.

We have found in short the principle, and therefore the essence, of the human. Created in the image of God, humans are meant to know, to be free, and to love the best things. These things are not automatic: they must be cultivated. This cultivation gives the College, as it gives all human life, the purpose that makes it what it is. We think we and all others have a right to pursue this cultivation. It is the ultimate human right, and it must be defended.

This is why we are grateful for the blessing of the College, for the length of its life, for the good that it calls us to find. We will do our utmost to preserve and improve it so that another 175 years will be possible. Join us, as so many of you have and do, in that work.

Original here

3 Ways To Restore Good Conscience

January 3, 2020 hepsibahgarden

And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and toward men. Acts‬ ‭24:16

As followers of Christ, it is imperative for us to keep our CONSCIENCE void of offence before God and man. How should our conscience be? It should be a good conscience and a pure conscience. If we don’t preserve it in this state, the chances of it flipping into a bad conscience are higher.

Suppose, we lost the good conscience we had with God and man. How do we restore it back to its former state?

1. By allowing our conscience to be washed by the Blood of Jesus – By believing in the Blood of Jesus, accepting our failures and presenting the state of our conscience as it to God. He will surely wash us with His blood and restore our conscience back to its former state. Even now there is power in the Blood of Jesus to cleanse and sanctify us.

How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? Hebrews‬ ‭9:14‬

2. By reconciling with one another – This means by not forgiving those who have wronged us, our conscience stays in a dead state. But when we forgive those who have wronged us, our conscience is clear before God and when we ask for forgiveness from Him, He will forgive us too.

So if when you are offering your gift at the altar you there remember that your brother has any [grievance] against you, Leave your gift at the altar and go. First make peace with your brother, and then come back and present your gift. Matthew‬ ‭5:23-24‬

3. Being subject to our elders – Even though we were sinners, Jesus bore all our sins upon Himself because His conscience was good. He was ready to obey. He willingly obeyed and did the will of the Father — He gave Himself up for us on the Cross. There may be times when things could go wrong. But in order to preserve our conscience, when we choose to do the right thing, before God we can preserve our good conscience.

Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. Romans‬ ‭13:5‬

May God help us!❤️


Original here

The Danger of Not Disciplining Your Kids

Lessons from 1 Samuel 2

January 3, 2020 by SLIMJIM

Establish the need: Do you see the importance of spiritually disciplining your children?


Purpose: Today we will see five points concerning the danger of not disciplining your kids

  • Beware the sins of your children (1 Samuel 2:12-17, 22)
  • Beware of thinking your example is enough
  • Beware of doing a little discipline a little too late (1 Samuel 2:22-25)
  • Beware of thinking you are not responsible for not discipling your kids (1 Samuel 2:27-36)
  • Let us dedicate our child to the Lord (1 Samuel 2:19-21 and 11, 18, 26 and 1 Samuel 3:1)


Beware the sins of your children (1 Samuel 2:12-17, 22)

Passage: ” Now the sons of Eli were worthless men; they did not know the Lord 13 and the custom of the priests with the people. When any man was offering a sacrifice, the priest’s servant would come while the meat was boiling, with a three-pronged fork in his hand. 14 Then he would thrust it into the pan, or kettle, or caldron, or pot; all that the fork brought up the priest would take for himself. Thus they did in Shiloh to all the Israelites who came there. 15 Also, before they burned the fat, the priest’s servant would come and say to the man who was sacrificing, “Give the priest meat for roasting, as he will not take boiled meat from you, only raw.” 16 If the man said to him, “They must surely burn the fat first, and then take as much as you desire,” then he would say, “No, but you shall give it to me now; and if not, I will take it by force.” 17 Thus the sin of the young men was very great before the Lord, for the men despised the offering of the Lord.” (12-17)


  1. Summary about the sons of Eli: “Now the sons of Eli were worthless men; they did not know the Lord” (v.12)
    1. Characteristic 1: “were worthless men”= Morally wicked men.
    2. Characteristic 2: “they did not know the Lord”= The root of their problem is spiritual.
  2. Offense 1: “and the custom of the priests with the people. When any man was offering a sacrifice, the priest’s servant would come while the meat was boiling, with a three-pronged fork in his hand. 14 Then he would thrust it into the pan, or kettle, or caldron, or pot; all that the fork brought up the priest would take for himself. Thus they did in Shiloh to all the Israelites who came there.” (v.13-14)
    1. Priests were allotted the breast and right leg from the people’s sacrifices according to Leviticus 7:28-36.[1]
    2. Here the sons sent a servant with a fork (13)
    3. The man would then use that fork to get food for themselves from the people.
  3. Offense 2: “Also, before they burned the fat, the priest’s servant would come and say to the man who was sacrificing, “Give the priest meat for roasting, as he will not take boiled meat from you, only raw.” 16 If the man said to him, “They must surely burn the fat first, and then take as much as you desire,” then he would say, “No, but you shall give it to me now; and if not, I will take it by force.” (v.15-16)
    1. According to Leviticus 3 the fat should be burned to honor God.[2]
    2. But then this servant would break procedure by starting out “before they burned the fat” (15a).
    3. And the servant would break procedure by asking for uncook meet (15b).
    4. If people correct the servant then the servant will threaten them according to verse 16.
  4. Offense 3: “Now Eli was very old; and he heard all that his sons were doing to all Israel, and how they lay with the women who served at the doorway of the tent of meeting” (v.22)
    1. Here sexual sins are mentioned.
    2. Eli’s sons had mad the area near the tent of meeting a place where sins were committed instead of being confessed.[3]
  5. God’s assessment restated: “Thus the sin of the young men was very great before the Lord, for the men despised the offering of the Lord” (v.17)
    1. The sons’ sin “was very great.
    2. Also note that they “despised the offering of the Lord!


  1. Our children’s will sin; do you know what their sins are?
  2. Do you know

Beware of thinking your example is enough


  1. We don’t see any written account of he himself doing something actively in terms of willful sins against God.
  2. Eli was a priest!
  3. He served with others.
  4. He had no problem correcting what he perceive is people’s sin in 1 Samuel 1.
  5. He even discipled others!
  6. He was an example to even a youth name Samuel in 1 Samuel 2:11.
  7. Lesson: Our good example is not enough! We need to discipline our kids! [4]

Picture: Do you know people who are good at church and busy with church but their kids are terrible? Then you talk to the kids and there’s no discipline nor discipleship but the parents are such good example of being busy at church and serving!


  1. We need to realize our examples are important! But it is not enough to just only be a good example!
  2. We need to internalize verses that the Bible says we need to discipline our kids such as Proverbs 29:15![5]


Beware of doing a little disciple a little too late (1 Samuel 2:22-25)

Passage: ” Now Eli was very old; and he heard all that his sons were doing to all Israel, and how they lay with the women who served at the doorway of the tent of meeting. 23 He said to them, “Why do you do such things, the evil things that I hear from all these people? 24 No, my sons; for the report is not good which I hear the Lord’s people circulating. 25 If one man sins against another, God will mediate for him; but if a man sins against the Lord, who can intercede for him?” But they would not listen to the voice of their father, for the Lord desired to put them to death.” (22-25)


  1. Eli definitely knows about his sons’ sins: “Now Eli was very old; and he heard all that his sons were doing to all Israel” (v.22a)
  2. Eli spoke out against his sons: “He said to them, “Why do you do such things, the evil things that I hear from all these people?” (v.23)
    1. It is good to speak out against sins.
    2. But then there’s concern still.
    3. God Himself later said: “For I have told him that I am about to judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knew, because his sons brought a curse on themselves and he did not rebuke them.” (1 Samuel 3:13)= So Samuel did not correct his son as a result habit.[6]
    4. Here in verse 23 we do see Samuel spoke up but recall “Now Eli was very old” (22a); he might have just spoken up rather late!
    5. Also Eli might have spoken up more from fear of man than fear of God; note verse 24: “No, my sons; for the report is not good which I hear the Lord’s people circulating
  3. Practice
    1. We need to be proactive in speaking out against our children’s sins!
    2. WE need to nip in the bud concerning our children’s sins!
    3. We need to discipline.
    4. We need to do it not only when our kids are old but when they are young.
    5. We need to discipline not out of fear of man and only when its embarrassing but for the Lord first!


Beware of thinking you are not responsible for not discipling your kids (1 Samuel 2:27-36)


  1. While it is true that we are responsible for our own sins still don’t think we don’t sin when we are negligent in discipline of children as parents.
  2. God sent a prophet to rebuke Samuel; here are sobering these words are: “Then a man of God came to Eli and said to him, “Thus says the Lord, ‘Did I not indeed reveal Myself to the house of your father when they were in Egypt in bondage to Pharaoh’s house? 28 Did I not choose them from all the tribes of Israel to be My priests, to go up to My altar, to burn incense, to carry an ephod before Me; and did I not give to the house of your father all the fire offerings of the sons of Israel? 29 Why do you kick at My sacrifice and at My offering which I have commanded in My dwelling, and honor your sons above Me, by making yourselves fat with the [p]choicest of every offering of My people Israel?’ 30 Therefore the Lord God of Israel declares, ‘I did indeed say that your house and the house of your father should walk before Me forever’; but now the Lord declares, ‘Far be it from Me—for those who honor Me I will honor, and those who despise Me will be lightly esteemed. 31 Behold, the days are coming when I will break your [q]strength and the [r]strength of your father’s house so that there will not be an old man in your house. 32 You will see the distress of My dwelling, in spite of all the good that [s]I do for Israel; and an old man will not be in your house forever. 33 Yet I will not cut off every man of yours from My altar [t]so that your eyes will fail from weeping and your soul grieve, and all the increase of your house will die [u]in the prime of life. 34 This will be the sign to you which will come concerning your two sons, Hophni and Phinehas: on the same day both of them will die. 35 But I will raise up for Myself a faithful priest who will do according to what is in My heart and in My soul; and I will build him an enduring house, and he will walk before My anointed always. 36 Everyone who is left in your house will come and bow down to him for a [v]piece of silver or a loaf of bread and say, “Please [w]assign me to one of the priest’s offices so that I may eat a piece of bread.”’”” (v.27-36)
    1. We won’t be going over the whole thing but listen to how serious is God’s punishment.
    2. This punishment is also directed towards Eli.
    3. Also notice how long this section is compared to the previous section; God wants us to know we are responsible for bad parenting when we don’t discipline and correct.


  1. Have you realized your responsibility as a parent to discipline your child?
  2. Have you realize there are consequences for yourself as well if you don’t discipline your child?


Let us dedicate our child to the Lord (1 Samuel 2:19-21 and 11, 18, 26 and 1 Samuel 3:1)

Passage: ”A” (A)


  1. In the middle of all of these public events is a private event that’s a contrast.
  2. The mother Hannah and her son Samuel is a contrast with Eli and his sons especially in the details found in 1 Samuel 2:19-21.[7]
    1. 19-21             V.22-26
    2. Mother’s love (19) Father’s sorrow (v.22)
    3. Eli’s blessing (20) Eli’s rebuke (v.23-25a)
    4. Provision : Life (21a) Purpose: Death (v.25b)
    5. Samuel’s growth (21b) Samuel’s growth (v.26)
  3. Hannah was willing to give her child up to the Lord! What a contrast with Eli.
  4. With every reference to sins we see God juxtaposition that with a statement that Samuel was serving and growing in God.[8]
    1. Samuel serving (2:11)
    2. Eli’s sons’ sins (2:12-17)
    3. Samuel serving (2:18-21)
    4. Eli’s son’s sins (2:22-25)
    5. Samuel growing (2:26)
    6. Prophecy of judgment of Eli’s sons’ sins (2:27-36)
    7. Samuel serving (3:1)


  1. Be careful of thinking being nice is a substitute with being dedicated to God and dedicating your child to God.
  2. Be careful of mere legalism but eventually we need to focus our kids to turn and be dedicated to the Lord.


[1] Dale Ralph Davis, 1 Samuel, (Ross-shire, Scotland: Christian Focus), 30.

[2] Dale Ralph Davis, 1 Samuel, (Ross-shire, Scotland: Christian Focus), 30.

[3] Dale Ralph Davis, 1 Samuel, (Ross-shire, Scotland: Christian Focus), 30.

[4] Paul and Karen Tautges, Help! My Toddler Rules the House (Wapwallopen, PA: Shepherd Press, 2014), 12.

[5] Paul and Karen Tautges, Help! My Toddler Rules the House (Wapwallopen, PA: Shepherd Press, 2014), 12.

[6] Paul and Karen Tautges, Help! My Toddler Rules the House (Wapwallopen, PA: Shepherd Press, 2014), 13.

[7] Dale Ralph Davis, 1 Samuel, (Ross-shire, Scotland: Christian Focus), 32.

[8] Dale Ralph Davis, 1 Samuel, (Ross-shire, Scotland: Christian Focus), 31.

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