The Remnant Church -

April 30, 2007

What would Jesus really do?

By Roland Martin

When did it come to the point that being a Christian meant only caring about two issues,­ abortion and homosexuality?

Ask the nonreligious what being a Christian today means, and based on what we see and read, it's a good bet they will say that followers of Jesus Christ are preoccupied with those two points.

Poverty? Whatever. Homelessness? An afterthought. A widening gap between the have and have-nots? Immaterial. Divorce? The divorce rate of Christians mirrors the national average, so that's no big deal.

The point is that being a Christian should be about more than abortion and homosexuality, and it's high time that those not considered a part of the religious right expose the hypocrisy of our brothers and sisters in Christianity and take back the faith. And those on the left who believe they have a "get out of sin free" card must not be allowed to justify their actions.

Many people believe we are engaged in a holy war. And we are. But it's not with Muslims. The real war -- ­ the silent war ­-- is being engaged among Christians, and that's what we must set our sights on.

As we celebrate Holy Week, our focus is on the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. But aren't we also to recommit ourselves to live more like Jesus? Did Jesus spend his time focusing on all that he didn't like, or did Jesus raise the consciousness of the people to understand love, compassion and teach them about following the will of God?

As a layman studying to receive a master's in Christian communications, and the husband of an ordained minister, it's troubling to listen to "Christian radio" and hear the kind of hate spewing out of the mouths of my brothers and sisters in the faith.

In fact, I've grown tired of people who pimp God. That's right; we have a litany of individuals today who are holy, holy, holy, sing hallelujah, talk about how they love the Lord, but when it's time to walk the walk, somehow the spirit evaporates.

A couple of years ago I took exception to an e-mail blast from the Concerned Women for America. The group was angry that Democrats were blocking certain judges put up for the federal bench by President Bush. It called on Americans to fight Democrats who wanted to keep Christians off the bench.

So I called and sent an e-mail asking, "So, where were you when President Clinton appointed Christian judges to the bench? Were they truly behind Christian judges, or Republican Christian judges?

Surprise, surprise. There was never a response.

An African-American pastor I know in the Midwest was asked by a group of mostly white clergy to march in an anti-abortion rally. He was fine with that, but then asked the clergy if they would work with him to fight crack houses in predominantly black neighborhoods.

"That's really your problem," he was told.

They saw abortion as a moral imperative, but not a community ravaged by crack.

If abortion and gay marriage are part of the Christian agenda, I have no issue with that. Those are moral issues that should be of importance to people of the faith, but the agenda should be much, much broader.

I'm looking for the day when Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, Joyce Meyer, James Dobson, Tony Perkins, James Kennedy, Rod Parsley, " Patriot Pastors" and Rick Warren will sit at the same table as Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Cynthia Hale, Eddie L. Long, James Meek, Fred Price, Emmanuel Cleaver and Floyd Flake to establish a call to arms on racism, AIDS, police brutality, a national health care policy, our sorry education system.

If they all say they love and worship one God, one Jesus, let's see them rally their members behind one agenda.

I stand here today not as a Republican or a liberal. And don't bother calling me a Democrat or a conservative. I am a man,­ an African-American man ­who has professed that Jesus Christ is Lord, and that's to whom I bow down.

If you concur, it's time to stop allowing a chosen few to speak for the masses. Quit letting them define the agenda.

So put on the full armor of God because we have work to do.


Editor's note: Roland Martin is a CNN contributor and talk-show host on WVON-AM in Chicago, Illinois. He is the author of "Listening to the Spirit Within: 50 Perspectives on Faith."


TV Evangelist John Hagee Wants War With Iran, and He Wants It Now!

by Bill Barnwell

If anyone still thinks that the radical end-times "prophecy" movement is not a threat to peace and stability, think again. At the popular level, in terms of the TV preachers and the hot-selling prophecy books, the dispensational pre-trib stuff still reigns supreme. Most conservative-leaning Evangelical churches in America today are heavily influenced by popular dispensational theology to some extent. Even churches and pastors that don´t teach pretribulationalism still are influenced by dispensationalism to varying degrees.

The most dangerous element of this prophetic paradigm, however, is its doom-and-gloom view of the world. And in most cases, those who have a fascination with the end of the world have a particular fascination with war and militarism as well. More problematic, it assumes that their wars of choice are not just their own foreign policy preferences or personal opinions. Rather they are ordained by God. In 2003, more than a few pastors and influential Christian figures basically said that opposing the Iraq war was opposing God´s end-time plan. According to Evangelical end-times enthusiasts, if you opposed the Iraq war, you didn´t just hate your country and the troops, now you were opposing God and the Bible as well.

An even bigger obsession for dispensationalists has always been Israel. For the average dispensationalist, modern-day secular Israel is going to be the focal point in the end-times. Therefore, if the Bible really does teach in Daniel 9:27 that the Al-Aqsa Mosque is going to be torn down for a rebuilt Jewish Temple, why should any of us seek to prevent it? Sure, it very well might ignite a regional war and even ignite tensions around the world, but it's all part of God´s prophetic plan. Not to worry though, things might not get really ugly until after the "rapture," so the Christians today who are cheering for events that would bring about World War III won´t have to worry about it anyway. Unless of course, they are wrong about the whole thing.

Enter the Rev. John Hagee. Hagee is the pastor of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio Texas, where he has 18,000 followers right in his own congregation. He also has a global television ministry and has sold scores of prophecy books over the years. John Hagee is perhaps the most powerful and influential Christian Zionist figure in America. Hagee has a long history making strange predictions about world events that are almost always wrong. His books in the late 90´s trumped up Y2K hysteria to ridiculous levels. He inaccurately predicted that the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin was the "Beginning of the End" in the book of the same name. In every book he writes, he is constantly warning of catastrophe in various forms right around the corner. According to one of his fans, he supposedly just preached a sermon predicting that 2007 would be a "significant" year in Bible prophecy and that his prophecy claims can be "mathematically" backed up by the Biblical text.

Given Hagee´s prior success rate in making predictions, don´t be shocked if 2007 doesn´t shape up to be all that "significant" after all. As with all popular prophecy teachers, they are immune from making inaccurate predictions and false prophecies. Their followers simply forget or forgive them. Maybe they´ll even claim that God changed His mind. Most don´t even pay attention though and don´t even realize their superstars are constantly revising their predictions and end-times charts.

However, Hagee is not just another goofy eccentric on TBN. He has political clout and regularly meets with influential national politicians. If you´ve ever watched him on TV, he clearly basks in this fact and drops little hints about his discussions with people in governmental authority and other positions of power. For years Hagee has hosted "A Night to Honor" Israel and is founder and chairman of Christians United for Israel. Their goals span beyond supporting Israel, but also implementing a one-sided and radical approach to the Arab-Israeli problems in the Middle East. There is no nuance to their policy prescriptions and ironically (or perhaps not so ironically) the agenda of Hagee and his group would actually make matters much worse in the Middle East.

And he has more than a few fans out there. He has not been afraid to remind his church and television audience, repeatedly over the years, that there are "millions in America and around the world watching this program right now." Whatever the number really is, what is clear is that Hagee is reaching many people and has a networking system that spans into the rich and powerful, some of whom are making national foreign policy decisions.

If left up to Hagee, there would be a military strike against Iran today. Since last summer, Hagee has been practically foaming at the mouth for a new war with Iran. Why? Because he thinks it is the rest of the world´s job to fight Israel´s wars and because he thinks such a showdown is a piece of the puzzle in regards to Bible prophecy. To Hagee, there is no middle ground on this issue. God told Abraham he would "bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you" (Gen. 12:3). That means if YOU aren´t on board with wars that might be in Israel´s interest, but not in the United States´, then YOU will be cursed by God. At least according to Hagee.

To see just how bellicose, belligerent, and militaristic Hagee has come, just watch his speech at the AIPAC Washington conference. Behind his thundering prose and love for the Jewish people is a militaristic and even fanatical mindset that is hoping and praying for the world to fall apart. After all, Jesus can´t come back unless it does, but all is well since Christians before the "rapture" will escape the worst of it.

Unfortunately for the Jewish people, they still await another massive holocaust, according to many dispensationalists. Anyone interested in this subject should read our own Gary North´s column, The Unannounced Reason Behind American Fundamentalism's Support for the State of Israel. An excerpt:

    Nothing can or will be done by Christians to save Israel´s Jews from this disaster, for all of the Christians will have been removed from this world three and a half years prior to the beginning of this 42-month period of tribulation. (The total period of seven years is interpreted as the fulfillment of the seventieth week of Daniel [Dan. 9:27].)

    In order for most of today´s Christians to escape physical death, two-thirds of the Jews in Israel must perish, soon. This is the grim prophetic trade-off that fundamentalists rarely discuss publicly, but which is the central motivation in the movement´s support for Israel. It should be clear why they believe that Israel must be defended at all costs by the West. If Israel were militarily removed from history prior to the Rapture, then the strongest case for Christians´ imminent escape from death would have to be abandoned. This would mean the indefinite delay of the Rapture. The fundamentalist movement thrives on the doctrine of the imminent Rapture, not the indefinitely postponed Rapture.

    Every time you hear the phrase, "Jesus is coming back soon," you should mentally add, "and two-thirds of the Jews of Israel will be dead in ‘soon plus 84 months.´" Fundamentalists really do believe that they probably will not die physically, but to secure this faith prophetically, they must defend the doctrine of an inevitable holocaust.

    This specific motivation for the support of Israel is never preached from any fundamentalist pulpit. The faithful hear sermons – many, many sermons – on the pretribulation Rapture. On other occasions, they hear sermons on the Great Tribulation. But they do not hear the two themes put together: "We can avoid death, but only because two-thirds of the Jews of Israel will inevitably die in a future holocaust. America must therefore support the nation of Israel in order to keep the Israelis alive until after the Rapture." Fundamentalist ministers expect their congregations to put two and two together on their own. It would be politically incorrect to add up these figures in public.

Again, however, one can´t make too big a fuss about this, since "Bible prophecy" demands this carnage. It´s "God´s will" for the world to fall apart, for tensions to further inflame between Jews and Arabs, for the United States to lead the charge in a pre-emptive strike on Iran, to rebuild a third Jewish Temple after tearing down the Islamic mosque, etc. All you have to do to prove this is cut passages like Genesis 12, Matthew 24, 2 Thessalonians 2, Ezekiel 36 and 37, and Daniel 9:24–27 out of context (along with the entire book of Revelation), make up some handy-dandy prophecy charts, and confidently present it to Biblically illiterate Christians who don´t know any better.

While there are many doctrinal disputes amongst Christians, there are none that have as much practical significance as this one. I strongly disagree with those who deny the Trinity, but those who deny the deity of Christ are not clamoring for war, bombs, and destruction. Likewise, Christians disagree vehemently over issues like eternal security or the proper mode of baptism, but thankfully we´ve grown up and stopped killing each other over those issues in the last couple hundred years.

When it comes to questionable or inaccurate beliefs about the end-times, however, they are shaping many people´s foreign policy and worldviews for the worse. It is causing many to hold troubling escapist views towards the world. I know this because I am constantly told by other Christians that "we are not in the business of fixing up the world, we are just in the business of saving souls until the rapture!" It is in part because of faulty eschatology that Evangelical Christians, more than any other demographic group in America, supported the ill-advised invasion of Iraq in 2003. And it is faulty eschatology that is causing this same group of people to believe the militaristic agenda behind Rev. Hagee´s bombastic oratory. After all, it´s all been ordained, so how can we oppose it?

But maybe, just maybe, their preciously held beliefs about future prophecy are way off. Maybe they are dead wrong in their views and maybe all the wars, destruction and carnage they think are inevitable aren´t necessarily mandated by God. Maybe the Bible is teaching exactly the opposite regarding these matters than what they teach.

Alas, no matter how many false predictions these guys make, or how many damaging theological and political beliefs they espouse, people continue to follow their dangerous teachings. It´s time for both Christian and non-Christian alike to call this crowd out on their bad theology, false prophecies, and deadly worldview.

Hopefully Hagee is right that 2007 is going to be a significant year in Bible prophecy. It would be significant indeed if Biblical scholars, pastors and laymen finally and at long last rescued the doctrine of eschatology from the doom and destruction crowd of militaristic pretribulationists. Here´s hoping that with each passing year the theology of Hagee and his ilk is exposed for how Biblically inaccurate and destructive it really is.

Bill Barnwell is a pastor and writer from Michigan. He holds both a Master of Ministry degree and a Master of Arts in Theological Studies degree from Bethel College in Mishawaka, Indiana.

Copyright © 2007

Jesus Wouldn´t Bomb a Soul

"So why are we waging war on the poor and oppressed?"

By Jason Miller

I will not tire of declaring that if we really want an effective end to violence we must remove the violence that lies at the root of all violence: structural violence, social injustice, exclusion of citizens from the management of the country, repression. All this is what constitutes the primal cause, from which the rest flows naturally.
---Archbishop Oscar Romero (1917-1980)

Contrary to the perpetual barrage of bovine fecal matter spewed forth by our beloved corporate media whores, terrorism is not an imminent threat to the continued existence of moral, peaceful human beings. Certainly there are groups and individuals who kill innocents in pursuit of demented agendas. However, by and large, those labeled “terrorists’ by the Bush administration and their unofficial mouth-pieces at Fox News and similar outlets are people who are simply using "asymmetrical warfare" to resist the ongoing oppression, exploitation and subjugation of an imperialist aggressor. Increasingly, United States foreign and domestic policies are determined by a relative handful of cynical bourgeois, some of whom are not even US Americans. Their malevolence is exceeded only by their avarice.

True to their deceitful natures, the moneyed elite have contrived the “War on Terror’ as an attack on those bold enough to violently oppose their enslavement. Yes, the latest campaign to enforce Pax Americana is simply a new front in the “War on the Poor and Oppressed.’ Humanity has been embroiled in an epic struggle between the pecunious and impoverished since it developed agriculture, abandoned nomadism, and began the acquisition of wealth. Industrialization, consumerism, materialism, debt slavery, wage slavery, hyper-competitiveness, egocentrism, and the myriad of ills spawned by American Capitalism have catapulted the plutocracy into the stratosphere in terms of wealth and power. They are not about to quietly relinquish their ill-gotten spoils.

Despite the deepening misery and increasing numbers of indigent human beings, our corporate masters and their loyal propagandists assure us that the class wars are over. After all, the collapse of the Soviet Union and China´s rush to embrace “free markets’ “prove’ that Socialism and Communism are utopian failures. The United States and the countries it has conquered (sorry, that´s liberated), are meritocracies. For those of you in rags, riches are just around the corner. Simply get off your lazy posteriors and apply a little elbow grease. Such tripe rolls easily off the tongues of those pulling down six, seven or eight figure incomes, people who nestle safely within the confines of their gated communities and rest upon the comfortable support of their inherited or plundered fortunes.

Yet far from having ended, thanks to the tireless efforts of Goldwater, Buckley, Nixon, Reagan, Cheney, Bush, and a host of other neo-fascists, the enduring socioeconomic struggle has reached a fever pitch. Tragically, the ruling elite have utilized their formidable agitprop to beguile the confused masses into believing that our depraved system´s victims (and their champions) are the enemy.


In stark contrast to George Bush, a man responsible for the deaths of a million or more Iraqis and Afghanistanis plus thousands of US Americans in New Orleans and Iraq, Hugo Chavez has no blood on his hands. And Chavez, a man who has mitigated the suffering of millions of people, is the “threat’.

Resistance fighters battling to expel a foreign occupier which has been waging genocide against the Iraqi people since the Gulf War are “terrorists’. The invading hordes are hailed as “liberators’.

Ridiculously out-gunned and out-financed Palestinian groups like Hamas, which resort to violence in a desperate attempt to counter brutal Zionist ethnic cleansing, Apartheid, occupation, and colonization, commit “acts of terror’ when they kill Israeli civilians. Conversely, Israeli IDF forces are “fully justified’ when they commit murder on a much wider scale because they are “defending Israel´s right to exist’.

One can find numerous other instances of the empowered establishment vilifying and attacking the “wretched refuse’, but let´s rewind a few years for a revealing look at a specific example of the pernicious machinations of the opulent. Concurrently, we will also explore a potential solution to the cancer of American Capitalism which plagues the Earth and nearly every living being on it.

Free at last?

Liberation Theology, a movement widely embraced by Central and South American priests and bishops in the 1960´s, 70´s and 80´s, traces its roots back to Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a Lutheran pastor who was hanged in 1943 for his resistance to Hitler and the Nazis. Interpreting Christ´s teachings as a clarion call to devote their lives to the struggle for social justice and human rights, people like Don Helder Camara, Leonardo Boff, Dorothy Stang, and Oscar Romero faced harassment, punitive action from the Vatican, persecution, and assassination in their quests to uplift the exploited, violated, and destitute.

The Red Bishop

Taking on both the Vatican and the military dictatorship that ruled his home nation of Brazil from 1964 to 1985, the Red Bishop, Don Helder Camara, was a fearless advocate for the down-trodden. World renowned for relentlessly assailing the ruthless Brazilian government for human rights violations, Camara attacked the Right Wing elements of the Catholic Church with equal vigor. Before Pope John Paul II and Joseph Ratzinger, his reactionary confidant, effectively silenced most liberation theologians (because of their Marxist tendencies), Camara managed to significantly advance the cause of humanity in Brazil.

Camara is noted for once having said, “When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a Communist.’

The Architect

Leonardo Boff in particular drew Ratzinger´s wrath. Boff, another Brazilian clergyman, was even more radical in the eyes of the Church than Camara. His tireless intellectual efforts set the foundations for Liberation Theology in Latin America. The Vatican was loath to associate itself with this Leftist political movement, Christ´s call for justice be damned. As its chief architect, Boff was a marked man.
Statements like, “Jesus was a political prisoner, who died on the Cross, not an old man who died in bed,’ did little to endear him to an institution far more interested in expanding its wealth and influence than in taking a stand against established powers on behalf of the indigent. The Church stripped Boff of a number of his priestly duties. He eventually left the Church and went on to pursue a better world through independent political activism.
Affirming his fervent opposition to our criminal potentates, in November of 2001 Boff commented, "For me, the terrorist attack of September 11 signs the turning for a new humanitarian and world model. The targeted buildings send a message: a new world civilization couldn't be built with the kind of dominating economy (symbolized by the World Trade Center), with the kind of death machine set up (the Pentagon) and with the kind of arrogant politics and producer of many exclusions (White House spared, because the plane fell before). For me the system and culture of the capital started to fell. They are too destructive."
A US American nun who eventually became a naturalized citizen of Brazil, Dorothy Stang was an indefatigable and valorous defender of both the rainforests and the rights of peasant farmers. Despite death threats from wealthy land-owners and logging interests, she continued helping poor Brazilian families work small land parcels without engaging in deforestation. On 2/12/05, assassins gunned her down at close range.
Dot, as her family called her, summarized her noble agenda succinctly with these words:
"I don't want to flee, nor do I want to abandon the battle of these farmers who live without any protection in the forest. They have the sacrosanct right to aspire to a better life on land where they can live and work with dignity while respecting the environment."
San Romero
Perhaps the most influential member of the deeply inspiring Liberation Theology crusade was “San Romero.’ The Vatican gave Oscar Romero his position as Archbishop of San Salvador because he ostensibly supported the “Washington Consensus’. However, witnessing thousands of horrific crimes against humanity catalyzed Romero´s profound conversion. Jimmy Carter (and later Ronald Reagan) helped finance the military of a government in El Salvador dominated by a few wealthy oligarchs who were closely aligned with US corporations. In their efforts to defend their wealth from the threat of the “Communist scourge’, Washington´s friends in El Salvador were murdering 3,000 unarmed “oppositionists’ each month by 1980.
Romero advocated a path of non-violence. In 1978 he wrote:
“The counsel of the Gospel to turn the other cheek to an unjust aggressor, far from being passive or cowardly, shows great moral force that leaves the aggressor morally overcome and humiliated. The Christian always prefers peace to war."
Utilizing his position and voice within the Church, Romero delivered powerful sermons calling for an end to the torture and slaughter. As an active means of protest, he closed schools, cancelled masses, opened the seminary to the homeless and wounded, and halted construction of the new cathedral. He leveled powerful accusations against the ruthless tyrants ruling El Salvador. Romero called upon the US to stop funding the butchers in San Salvador (Washington continued sending $1.5 million per day for 12 years), the penurious to take up “their own struggle for liberation’, and the peasant soldiers of El Salvador to defy their government masters:
“Brothers, you are from the same people; you kill your fellow peasant . . . No soldier is obliged to obey an order that is contrary to the will of God. No one has to fulfill an immoral law. It is time to recover your consciences and to obey your consciences rather than the orders of sin. . . . In the name of God then, in the name of this suffering people I ask you, I beg you, I command you in the name of God: stop the repression."
As a result of his appeal to El Salvador´s troops to defy their orders, on March 24, 1980, Monsignor Romero unknowingly presided over his final mass. In the midst of the service, an assassin´s bullet ripped through Romero´s heart. Within moments, he had passed to the other side. Reactionary forces had slain yet another intrepid defender of the tyrannized and poverty-stricken.
Hit Me with Another Round of Inculcation
Yet as Western media pundits, think tanks, and our “public servants’ have so astutely observed, there is no class war. Socioeconomic classes are fluid and amorphous in a US-dominated world economy offering limitless upward mobility. Marx and his philosophies are dead, buried, and forgotten. It is simply the natural order that “moral beacons’ like Carlos Slim Helu, the Walton´s, Charles Koch, Rupert Murdoch and a few hundred others possess more wealth than the world´s poorest 2.5 billion people. While it is a pity, the 11 million children who die as a result of poverty each year are necessary sacrifices upon the altar of Mammon.
In the terrifying and unlikely event that your indoctrination fails and you find yourself suddenly afflicted with the profound feeling of existential emptiness that accompanies the realization that our hedonistic, acquisitive, narcissistic, shallow, mean-spirited, and bellicose American Way is spiritually bankrupt, remember that the Liberation Theologians showed us that there are other ways of being.
Oh, to Hell with it!
Just turn on the TV. Luxuriate in the fantasy that you could become as affluent and privileged as “The Donald.’ That´s much more gratifying than attempting to emulate those hopelessly idealistic wannabe saints!

[Note of Disclosure: In his relatively nascent but profound divorce from the rabid centrism posing as “liberalism’ infecting many US Americans, this author unwittingly advocated and embraced notions akin to Liberation Theology prior to discovering the existence of this incredible movement. Despite abandoning his Christian faith in favor of a personal spirituality forged in the crucible of personal struggle, the two pieces linked below reveal the striking similarities between his personal principles and those of Liberation Theology:

In short, the author is heavily biased in favor of many aspects of Liberation Theology.]

Jason Miller is a wage slave of the American Empire who has freed himself intellectually and spiritually. His essays have been widely published, he is an associate editor for Cyrano´s Journal Online, and he volunteers at homeless shelters. He welcomes constructive correspondence at or via his blog, Thomas Paine's Corner, at

Bush: Planetary Pirate
By Paul Levy

We live in a world where the deeper, underlying mythic patterns that have endlessly reiterated themselves throughout human history are incarnating and revealing themselves through world events for all who have eyes to see. As if in a timeless fairy tale, our species has gotten drafted into playing out roles in a vast, multi-dimensional process which is revealing itself as it acts itself out through us. Seeing the mythical, archetypal roles that are being unconsciously enacted in the world theater initiates a process of deep transformation, both within ourselves and the world at large.

In this mythical drama we find ourselves in, our planet has been pirated and co-opted by the figure of George Bush and his gang of robber barons, who have taken control of the most powerful war machine the world has ever known and are using it to accomplish their own self-serving agenda. They are in the process of taking us hostage in our own country and are using our homeland to plunder and terrorize the rest of the planet. In this cosmic drama we are all sharing, George Bush and Co. have gotten dreamed up to play out, in full-bodied form, the archetypal, mythical role of pirate, which is a figure that exists deep within the collective unconscious of humanity.  

Instead of pirates of the Caribbean, however, Bush and Co. are pirates of what Buckminster Fuller called “spaceship earth.’ In his book Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth, Fuller pointed out how piracy has been one of the chief underlying factors shaping western history, and thus determining the way our world power structure has developed and still operates.

For example, in a truly ground-breaking expose that is easy to overlook because there are so many other administration scandals competing for our attention, investigative reporter Seymour Hersh in his latest article titled “The Redirection,’ has uncovered that the Bush regime is covertly funneling funds earmarked for Iraq´s reconstruction into fomenting sectarian violence and igniting civil wars in the region. Their underlying intention is to create enough chaos so that they can reconfigure the Middle East and thereby achieve their geo-political aim of seizing the oil and natural gas reserves in the region. Please see This is truly a diabolical act of modern-day global piracy writ large on the world stage that is utterly perverse.  

Pirates (and I am referring not to the romanticized Hollywood version, but to those who commit criminal acts of theft and violence against others, a.k.a., piracy) are symbolic of a macho, testosterone-driven pathological figure in the human psyche that, just like a bully, abuses power over others because they can. They pillage and murder simply because others can´t stop them, which is morally indefensible. Pirates are not merely criminally insane, they are morally insane. Pirates are truly sociopathic, as they have no conscience. They have become possessed by the power-drive of the shadow, which compels them to transgress and violate individuals´ (or nations´) boundaries. Pirates are driven to dominate and enslave others, as they act out the shadow of which they themselves are possessed. Pirates are symbolic of a virulent element in the human psyche which has become addicted to power and taken over by greed and lust for blood and booty.

Pirates are malignant narcissists, as they only care about their own masturbatory fantasies - they see the world as something they are entitled to loot and symbolically rape. They believe they can get away with murder – literally. Like a genuine sociopath, pirates lack the facility to empathically see through their victim´s eyes. Like a true predator, these privateers relate to others as objects from whom they can try to satisfy their never-ending hedonistic desire for pleasure. When pirates seize power, they do what is best for themselves, with no regard for anyone else – those who don´t support their dark vision get metaphorically “thrown overboard.’

Pirates symbolize the pathological figure of the predator who gets fed and even energized by doing violence to others. Pirates are an incarnation of the role of perpetrator or abuser, as they are the initiators of aggression based on their own insatiable blood-lust. Pirates are symbolic of the murderous insanity of the separate self, as in their marauding violence they are completely and utterly asleep to our interconnectedness.

Pirates are embodiments of the pathological aspect of our species that is susceptible to joining into lawless gangs so as to prey on and steal from those who are weaker. Because of the fact that these gangsters always configure themselves into groups, they are like organized crime syndicates. Pirates operate outside the restricting laws of conventional bureaucracy, as they live by a different set of rules than everyone else. They are true outlaws, as they live outside the law.

If it sounds like I am describing George Bush and Co., it is because Bush and his henchmen are unconsciously possessed by, and therefore embodying and pathologically acting out on the world stage the mythical, archetypal role of pirate. Pirates are symbolic of the archetypal quality of “evil’, one of whose inner meanings, etymologically speaking, is to “transgress boundaries’. Bush and Co. have become instruments for darker powers to incarnate themselves into our world. The figure of pirate is an archetypal, mythic image that re-presents and symbolizes a darker, sick, sadistic and self-destructive part of ourselves.  

It is like we are on a ship that Bush and Cheney have hijacked (the word “plane hijacker’ in French is “pirate de l´air’; we can thus call Bush and Co. “pirate de la planete’ – planet hijacker). They literally hijacked – stole – both the 2000 and the 2004 elections. When these planetary pirates – and those that support them - took over our country, it was as if they perpetrated a political coup, hijacking our ship of state, and in so doing many people fell under their spell such that they barely noticed. In a form of mass mind-control, part of their coup was to take over the mainstream media in such a way so as to put out propaganda aimed at convincing people that no hostile takeover had even taken place. Bush and Co. are modern-day corporate pirates in possession of the most cutting edge mind-control technology the world has ever known.

Bush and Co. have “captured’ our nation – and “captivated’ the minds of millions of our populace – brainwashing people by playing on their fear. We must recognize our complicity in allowing these depraved warlords to rule over us, otherwise we are unwittingly serving and supporting them as if they are our masters. Their power over us depends upon our being dis-connected from each other as well as from ourselves. We play right into their hands if we believe ourselves to be so disempowered. Their worst nightmare would be for us to connect with our intrinsic creative power as well as each other.

Having seized control of our country, they have emptied the coffers of our national treasury, and enlisted our nation into serving their barbaric ends. We need to recognize the extent of the Bush regime´s utter criminality. In a universal court of law, those committing piracy are considered to be “hostis humani generic’, a Latin term which translates as “enemies of humanity.’ In essence, pirates like Bush have declared war against humanity, who they hold in contempt.

>From the dreaming point of view, whose logic is not linear but synchronistic, it is not a coincidence that Bush is a member of “Skull and Bones,’ which is the very symbol of piracy. Nor is it an accident that pirates are “carousers,’ which Bush was for the majority of his life and still is, just in disguised form. It is like Bush is on a weekend bender that has lasted over six years, and the world is his crime scene.

If it sounds like I am “blaming’ Bush and his administration, I say “yes’, I am blaming them - I am blaming them for immoral, criminal acts which they are guilty of perpetrating on humanity and for which they deserve to be blamed. It is a huge mistake to be one-sidedly identified with the expansive, overly spiritual new-age point of view that there´s no one to blame, that we are all responsible. Yes, on one level, we are all co-creating and dreaming up this universe together, which is to say we are all complicit in different ways in what is playing out and there is no one to blame. But to be fully identified with this absolute point of view is to marginalize that from another very real point of view, relatively speaking, there are people who are perpetrating violence and abuse onto others. It is the most compassionate thing to do at these moments of abuse to not pretend the violence is something other than what it is.

One of the unconscious, shadow sides of the well-intentioned spiritual, progressive and liberal movements is to be hesitant to cast blame when it is the very skillful and enlightened response which is called for. Those who are perpetrating violence have a name and an address. This doesn´t mean we don´t love them, and have compassion for them, and forgive them. It does mean, however, that we stop them from perpetrating further abuse if we are able and hold them accountable for their actions. People who are compulsively enacting violence in the world will not stop voluntarily, they are literally crying out for and dreaming up other people who are courageous enough to set a boundary and stop their out of control and ultimately self-destructive behavior.

It is important for us to realize that Bush and Cheney are only the front-men for the organized crime syndicate of pirates which they serve and represent. Bush and Cheney are merely actors in a grand play. It is important to get in focus the roles they are playing. We can  pick our own metaphors (criminals, mad, ignorant, fascists, possessed by demons, etc), whichever one works for you is fine. The point is for us to get into focus and “see’ the evil that Bush and Cheney are actually doing; this is the last thing they want.

Sometimes clearly seeing what is happening is the very act which spontaneously activates and mobilizes effective action. Bush and Co. have a distinct advantage if we don´t recognize their predator-like nature. We can´t possibly be able to meet their challenge unless we clearly discern what we are up against. The more of us that see the danger confronting us the better, as we can then creatively join forces in a way which actively empowers us to successfully meet the crisis we are facing.   

Paul Levy is an artist and a spiritually-informed political activist. A pioneer in the field of spiritual awakening, he is a healer in private practice, assisting others who are also awakening to the dream-like nature of reality. He is the author of The Madness of George Bush: A Reflection of Our Collective Psychosis, which is available at his website Please feel free to pass this article along to a friend if you feel so inspired. You can contact Paul at; he looks forward to your reflections. © Copyright 2007.

Bush Has Gone AWOL

by General William Odom

The following is a transcript of the Democratic Radio Address delivered by Lieutenant General William E. Odom, U.S. Army (Ret.) on Saturday April 28, 2007:

“Good morning, this is Lieutenant General William E. Odom, U.S. Army, retired.

“I am not now nor have I ever been a Democrat or a Republican. Thus, I do not speak for the Democratic Party. I speak for myself, as a non-partisan retired military officer who is a former Director of the National Security Agency. I do so because Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, asked me.

“In principle, I do not favor Congressional involvement in the execution of U.S. foreign and military policy. I have seen its perverse effects in many cases. The conflict in Iraq is different. Over the past couple of years, the President has let it proceed on automatic pilot, making no corrections in the face of accumulating evidence that his strategy is failing and cannot be rescued.

“Thus, he lets the United States fly further and further into trouble, squandering its influence, money, and blood, facilitating the gains of our enemies. The Congress is the only mechanism we have to fill this vacuum in command judgment.

“To put this in a simple army metaphor, the Commander-in-Chief seems to have gone AWOL, that is ‘absent without leave.´ He neither acts nor talks as though he is in charge. Rather, he engages in tit-for-tat games.

“Some in Congress on both sides of the aisle have responded with their own tits-for-tats. These kinds of games, however, are no longer helpful, much less amusing. They merely reflect the absence of effective leadership in a crisis. And we are in a crisis.

“Most Americans suspect that something is fundamentally wrong with the President´s management of the conflict in Iraq. And they are right.

“The challenge we face today is not how to win in Iraq; it is how to recover from a strategic mistake: invading Iraq in the first place. The war could never have served American interests.

“But it has served Iran´s interest by revenging Saddam Hussein´s invasion of Iran in the 1980s and enhancing Iran´s influence within Iraq. It has also served al Qaeda´s interests, providing a much better training ground than did Afghanistan, allowing it to build its ranks far above the levels and competence that otherwise would have been possible.

“We cannot ‘win´ a war that serves our enemies interests and not our own. Thus continuing to pursue the illusion of victory in Iraq makes no sense. We can now see that it never did.

“A wise commander in this situation normally revises his objectives and changes his strategy, not just marginally, but radically. Nothing less today will limit the death and destruction that the invasion of Iraq has unleashed.

“No effective new strategy can be devised for the United States until it begins withdrawing its forces from Iraq. Only that step will break the paralysis that now confronts us. Withdrawal is the pre-condition for winning support from countries in Europe that have stood aside and other major powers including India, China, Japan, Russia.

“It will also shock and change attitudes in Iran, Syria, and other countries on Iraq´s borders, making them far more likely to take seriously new U.S. approaches, not just to Iraq, but to restoring regional stability and heading off the spreading chaos that our war has caused.

“The bill that Congress approved this week, with bipartisan support, setting schedules for withdrawal, provides the President an opportunity to begin this kind of strategic shift, one that defines regional stability as the measure of victory, not some impossible outcome.

“I hope the President seizes this moment for a basic change in course and signs the bill the Congress has sent him. I will respect him greatly for such a rare act of courage, and so too, I suspect, will most Americans.

“This is retired General Odom. Thank you for listening.’

General Odom has served as Director of the National Security Agency and Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence, the Army´s senior intelligence officer. In his address, General Odom will discuss why he believes President Bush should sign the conference report on the Iraq Accountability Act.

Joshua Prepares for Battle

Sammy Tippit

God wanted Joshua to never forget the great things that He had done. But He also wanted Joshua to know that he couldn't live on yesterday's triumphs. He needed to experience a daily encounter with God. It was necessary to taste of the mercies of God every morning. God had opened the Jordan River and allowed the children of Israel to cross into the promised land. He had worked with signs, wonders, and miracles. However, Joshua and the children of Israel still had battles to fight and enemies to conquer.

Therefore, it was imperative for Joshua to have a fresh meeting with God. In an unexpected moment, God revealed Himself to Joshua. The Bible says, "Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, "Are you for us or for our enemies."

"Neither," he replied, "but as commander of the army of the LORD I have now come." Then Joshua fell facedown to the ground in reverence, and asked him, "What message does my Lord have for his servant?"

The commander of the LORD's army replied, "Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy." And Joshua did so (Joshua 5:13 - 15 NIV).

There were several lessons that Joshua needed to learn before he could be used fully by God. First, he needed to know that he must trust in the Lord during every day and in every battle. He couldn't coast on yesterday's victories. He needed God in a fresh way every day.

Second, Joshua needed to learn that the only way in which we can lead God's people into battle is to be led by the Captain of the Lord of hosts. Spiritual leaders are great followers. He had to know that he wasn't the bottom line person. He wasn't the ultimate authority. He must know intimately and submit to the Captain of Captains and the King of Kings. I have had the privilege of knowing a few Generals in my life time. There's one thing that I know about great military leaders. They're not born that way. They all were at one time great followers. They didn't inherit their positions. They came up through the ranks. If this is true in the physical world, then how much more is it true in the spiritual world. Joshua had to know in the depths of his heart that the Captain of God's army was his leader.

But Joshua also needed to know that spiritual leadership depends upon holy men. Read the lives of the great men and women of the Scripture. When God revealed Himself to them, often they had to take their sandals off their feet because they were standing on holy ground. To be in the presence of God is to be in the presence of holiness.

I often hear seminars on leadership, but seldom hear anything about the subject of holiness in those seminars. Godly character is the foundation for positive, lasting leadership. Spiritual leadership rises and falls on holiness. When Joshua realized that he was standing in the presence of the Holy One of Israel, he fell on his face in awe and reverence.

God's method of leadership has not changed. He still uses humble, holy men and women. There are battles to be fought and wars to be waged, but they must be won from the position of holiness.

The Spirit of Merchandising

Marvin Westbrook

While in worship this morning, the Lord spoke these words to me: "I am removing a spirit of merchandising and the spirit of the merchant that has invaded My Church." This word is a call to leaders within the Body of Christ today to allow the Lord to purge this out of His temple, making it once again a house of prayer, not a den of thieves.

John 2:14-16 "And He found in the temple those who sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers doing business. When He had made a whip of cords, he drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen, and poured out the changers' of money and overturned the tables. And He said to those who sold doves, 'Take these things away! Do not make My Father's house a house of merchandise.'"

Jesus vehemently and passionately confronted this spirit that took hold within the very confines of His temple. He virtually exploded with zeal to expel it with a whip of cords, driving it from the temple courts. The spirit of merchandising would seek to promote the sale of goods in the Father's house. This blatantly detracts from the purpose, which is to be established as a house of prayer. The high priests had allowed commercialization and fraudulence to invade the temple of the Lord. When the temple is used for personal gain and profit, it is a desecration to the Father's house. Jesus will once again come with the zeal of His Father to purify the "sons of Levi" according to Malachi 3:3 so that "they may offer to the Lord as offering in righteousness." As leaders, let us check our hearts for the following before God has to bring correction.

Beware of a spirit of merchandising that rises up as ministers and ministries barter and peddle the Word of God for profit. God's word is marketed and merchandized with man's opinions and wisdom, yet diluted and devoid of true resurrection power. A fear of man will give the people what they want to hear, packaging it to appeal to itching ears. This may increase church growth and bring popularity and reputation, but it will bring dishonor to God.

Beware of a spirit of merchandising that adopts secular ways to do the spiritual work of God's Kingdom. In seeking to advance the Kingdom of God, many will go to the boardroom rather than drop to their knees in the throne room. Do not seek popular Christian trends that rise and fall according to man's wisdom and man's desire.

Beware of a spirit of merchandising that seeks to network and form political alliances that are not of God's Spirit. Leaders in an attempt to circumvent waiting on God do this. Many Ishmael's are birthed this way. Many seek to advance within denominations or church structure by who they know, rather than the revelation of whose they are.

There is much more that the Lord would like to say on this but I feel lead to stop at this point. In effect, the heart cry of the Father is strong and clear. The spirit of Babylon, the spirit of the world, tries to continually invade the Church of Jesus Christ by influencing its leaders to take the easier road by which to advance the Kingdom of God. We are to be in the world, not of the world. The Lord wishes to separate that which is precious from that which is vile within His Body so that the glory of the Lord would manifest in purity and holiness and unity so that the harvest would be brought into the Kingdom.

Debra & Marvin Westbrook

I AM Raising a People…

Jim Grayson
“I AM raising a people, My Beloved, a people much loved by My Heart of Hearts. I AM raising a people who will believe in Me for more than the salvation of their soul from hell. I AM raising a people who want to know Me, as I have known them, and who will follow Me wherever I take them, whether high or low; to them, it will make no difference, so long as they are following Me, for I will be their food and drink; I will be their sustenance; I will be their God in Whom they will trust for every need in their life. They will trust Me fully to do what I say I will do and not doubt My goodness, thereby blocking My blessings from them, then telling one another that I AM not the God I was in the days of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, that I AM no the of My Word, that times have changed and I no longer perform miracles in this time but I say unto those who speak this against Me: you receive not because you harbor doubt in your heart, for if you did not doubt My Word and My Heart toward you, you would see My glory extended toward you in ways you cannot imagine. Instead, many sit and complain about having a hard time and all along, if they would look at their own heart and be honest, they would find doubt in their hearts…much doubt…doubt that I AM Who I say I AM, and that I will still move to save My Beloved from the snare of the fowler. My heart aches at these accusations but I allow them to happen for, soon enough, those who doubt Me will see My Glory in those who did not doubt My Words to them, even though they waited years and years to see it happen, waiting in pain and darkness, listening to the enemy berate them for believing in such a God as Me but still they held on, because I enabled them to hold on.

I have put it in everyone to have faith; it is a choice one makes in this life I call you to…to either believe or not believe. My Son spoke that day in Bethany that if they would only believe, they would see the Glory of God. They believed and a man dead four days, a man Whom only the power of the Messiah could touch, got up from his tomb and walked out into the sunlight, wrapped in his grave clothes. It was with great joy that My Son said, “Loose him and let him go…’

It´s with great delight that I say the same today but I AM unable to say it often, for mostly what I see among My Children, My Beloved, is gross unbelief, holding onto the dead traditions and the stale denominations of men, hoping to see my glory in something of this earth but I say unto you, it will not happen! I shout it out: “New skins for new wine!’ Let there be a great movement of faith in My Beloved toward Me. Let them be loosed from their old ways and come to Me to believe and be healed of their unbelief. Let them shake off the dust of doubt which has so long plagued them and say with joy, “THIS is the day my Lord has made and I WILL rejoice and be glad in it!’

My Beloved, I AM calling you to a time of healing and miracles such as this world has never seen. Read the Acts of the Apostles and know these works will be done in these days…these works and more. Peter stood and preached and thousands were saved. The lack of silver and gold sent a lame man hurtling through My Temple, his twisted ankles straight and strong, made well by the power which dwelled in those who followed Me. A young woman lay dead as her loved ones wept over her, showing my servant Peter the works of her hands but they did not weep for long, for it was My delight to raise young Tabitha back to life, as it is My delight to do the same today! You see the dead upraised because you do not believe…
After Philip baptized the eunuch, I translated him to another place, for I AM not a God Who is held by the chains of your time. No, I AM TIME! I can do anything I choose and I will choose to move many of you from place to place in an instant, for time is short and why waste money of travel tickets when I can take you there for free!

I say to you, My Beloved, believed and rejoice! The time is now to break the chains of yesterday. All you need do is come to Me and believe! Let us do this thing together, you and I! Come…take My hand…take My hand and believe for the first time in your life that I Am your God and I desire to do good things for you. Come…believe…and walk as My servants walked of old. It is time for the old to fall to the wayside, to make way for the joyous new days ahead!

Come and believe in Me and I will make the dreams I have placed in your heart come true! I AM raising a people who believe in Me. Come and believe and be that people!’

“My Beloved, I AM raising a people who will not be afraid to be different from their peers, a people who will say with their whole heart, ‘I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ,´ and mean it and be willing to say it to anyone, even if it means they face death, from which there is no sting. I AM raising a people who will love Me with their whole heart, and not just pay Me lip service and play games with Me. I AM finished with those who play games. That time is over.

I Am raising a people who will desire to love Me as much as I love them, and I will show them deep and wonderful things unknown to those who care not for the deeper things of My Kingdom. I AM raising a people who, by My strength, will be courageous and will stand up to the status quo in the dead assembly which calls itself “the church of God’ but is only filled with the lies and traditions of man, and they will dare to say, ‘This is not right and does not line up with the Word of the Living God!´ My heart yearns for a people such as this. I will be their Strength and I will be their Song of Songs.

I AM raising a people who will be filled with My Spirit and will carry My Word wherever I ask them to take it, and will not be afraid to open their mouth to speak the Truth. They will walk in great power and yet, will be filled with the humility born of My own heart. They will do whatever I ask them and in doing so, will walk on water, still storms, raise the dead, cast out demons, heal the sick and will do things this world will be amazed to witness. The time of the ‘greater works´ is here.

I AM preparing the Bride for the Triumphant return of My Own Dear Son. Soon enough, the sky will split and then, with a great shout, the dead in Christ will rise first and then those who are alive in Christ will be caught up with them in a twinkling of an eye and thus shall they ever be with us in their Home, which My Son has prepared for them in Heaven.

I AM raising up a people…a very blessed people. Does that include you???’

“Listen, My Beloved…Behold, I come, even on the clouds, with the swiftness of a thousand lightnings, I come, and there are many who think they know the day and the hour, or the time but they know not, nor do they know even Me. I will come when they least expect it, when their lamps are empty and they are groping in the dark, wondering what happened to their “light’. Evil has infiltrated My Bride and She must be cleansed and She will be so, but it will take a miracle to make Her clean but it always takes a miracle for one of this world to witness My Holiness, the Holiness of the Living Christ of God. I Am He Who was slain and was dead but now, I AM alive and, behold, I hold in My hand the keys of hell and death, for when I rose again, I took them both captive to Me.

The evil one thought he had power over Me. He thought he had taken Me down to the pit but I was not to stay, for I rose again and brought a train of captives with Me, making a mockery of the evil one, setting My Beloved against him on the Day of Pentecost, to conquer him, and those who hear Me and believe Me, are those who conquer him now, yes, even to death. He has no power over them unless it is given. When you see him you will say, as it is prophesied in My Word, ‘Is this the man who caused the earth to tremble? Is this the man?´

Far too many of My brothers and sisters fear the evil one, thinking he has power over them, and he does, for they have believed the lie told by those who fill so many places of leadership in the Body. They speak not the Truth…MY Truth, and they will answer to Me for it, unless they repent, and if they do not repent, so great will their punishment be. Be not deceived by them, for they never knew Me from the beginning.
Many will come, many with big names among men, saying I Am come but do not listen. You will know Me when I come, for I will come with the blast of the trumpet and with the angels and no one but Me will gather you to Myself, to take you to My Father´s house forever, where all tears will be wiped away and thus we will spend eternity together.

Behold, I come…prepare yourselves, My Beloved, for My coming is closer than you think. Let there be oil in your lamps, much oil. Draw close to Me and I will draw close to you. Give Me your whole heart and let us do a work on this earth before it is finished. Give Me the right to your life and you will not regret it, I promise. I will make you great among the great, even as you are humble before Me. Be filled with My Love and live as you have never lived before. Walk with Me, talk with Me, do wonders with Me and we will bring in a wonderful and pleasing harvest together.

Listen…I say again…Behold, I come…’

A Freshening Wind
Jim Grayson

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