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U.S. Cites Array of Rights Abuses by the Iraqi Government in 2004
By BRIAN KNOWLTON
International Herald Tribune
Published: March 1, 2005

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/03/01/politics/01rights.html?ei=5094&en=6ebac305b8f7d933&hp=&ex=1109739600&partner=homepage&pagewanted=all&position

 


Commentary on Abuses by Iraqi Government
By Thomas Lee Abshier, ND
3/1/2005

The NYT article properly notes the moral failures and abuses committed by the governments of North Korea, Afghanistan, Pakistan, China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Iraq, etc.  Given the critical tone of many NYT articles, one could assume that the purpose of this piece was to show that America was evil, and that our efforts in Iraq were failures, because torture, rape, and corruption are occurring in the government that we helped install.  But, an expose’ revealing the presence of such abuse does not shock the introspective person.  We know the human condition – the depravity of man is acted out in every nation.  To report that friend and ally nations abuse justice and betray the highest principles of Godly government simply restates the principle that “children misbehave.” 

The best regulation of the State comes when the people bow to the God of Abraham (Jehovah/Yahweh/Yeshua).  When men embrace the highest standards, their behavior will more generally reflect the goals to which they aspire.  And, when people reject the Laws of God, they tend toward committing abuses againt their fellow man since actions flow naturally from values.  But, the connection between values and behavior is neither instantaneous nor immutable; as complex creatures with good intentions and weak wills, we fall prey to our base desires.  Likewise, even bad men can behave well since we all have the laws of God imprinted on our hearts. 

This is God’s world, and the Lord has already redeemed it from the potential for dissolution.  Jesus has died and conquered death.  Every soul and particle is now safe from the ultimate destruction of a universe which can fall apart into the chaotic void, never to be thought of again, even by accident.  On one level, the salvation offered by Jesus has already been given to all – we will all live for eternity.  The choice we make is actually one of resonance and relationship.  Jesus was the cornerstone of creation, and He is faithful, His commitment to hold the universe together will endure forever. 

But, even though we already have an inborn and existent relationship with God, we must nurture that connection and focus our attention, devotion, and action properly.  Many gurus and avatars have come to earth to point the direction to Him, but only Jesus truly is the Way, only He is the source and origin of creation and life.

Will all who call on another name be damned to Hell?  Many would say yes that all who do not believe in Jesus are condemned for eternity.  Certainly this interpretation of scripture can be strongly supported.  But my vision of God is one of absolute fairness and justice.  Consider the Jew who was born after Jesus was born, but never knew of Jesus’ miracles, His teaching, His fulfillment of Biblical prophesy, would that man be condemned, while the man who lived according to the Law of Moses and died the moment before Jesus was born be saved from eternal torment?

No, I cannot embrace an exclusionist doctrine which offers no grace to those who hear the voice of conscience, and obey it, but never hear the preaching of the gospel.  I cannot accept that God would create a world where the well meaning searcher of truth would be condemned forever because he does not find adequate arguments to overcome an internal passion for proof on the level of reason and evidence.

No, I believe God has already saved creation.  I believe He has already rescued us from the oblivion of eternal dissolution.  And yes, I do believe that it makes a difference to establish a relationship with Jesus.  Scripture states that No man comes unto the father but by me.  A relationship with Jesus is required to see the Father.  Can a person see Jesus in the heart of another Guru, and still come to the highest place of embrace of the Father? 

I do not wish to approve all spiritual paths.  I do not believe every spiritual discipline and teaching is equivalent.  There is only one peak to the mountain, but every path that is leading up toward the top is more beneficial than one opposing the divine perfection.  I believe that adherence to the spirit and teachings of Christ produce a better result in this life and the next.

God is visible only to the inner eye and our hearts can feel His guiding pull.  But God has created a world of duality, the Way of God, and the way of man.  This was not a mistake; it was a deliberate design to force a choice between God and all others.  Because we are given free will, we can choose.  Even if we are brought up to hate or doubt God – we will all hear and feel the presence of God calling us into relationship.  And yes, there are those who chose gold, pleasure, and power over a relationship with Him.

The violence and rebellion against the establishment of even the shadow of democratic rule reflects the demonic nature of the enemy we face.  The alliance we see against America’s efforts to install a good government in the place of a tyranny likewise reflects the workings of the unHoly Spirit.  The way of the flesh is seductive, but it is wrong.  Those who believe that peace can come through negotiation with a tyrant are deluded.  At some point, those who are committed to maintaining tyranny must be removed by force.  In time, the tyranny of a dictator may diminish, but the wait may be so long that the short term healing crisis associated with eliminating the pathogen may be preferable to the long term pain of living in the diseased state. 

The problem with nation building is that simply establishing a nation’s laws does not necessarily insure the maintenance of a national morality.  Ideally, we should establish a missionary presence along with a battle plan.  Christianity is not a religion of “peace above all.”  Rather, Christianity is a religion of “Godliness first.”  Peace is a fruit of righteousness.  When we project Christianity into a nation’s psyche, a seed of righteous Godliness has been planted, and a powerful biasing factor is placed inside the group wisdom governing societal transactions and the expectations of individual behavior.  And, since the forces of tyranny wish to totally suppress Godly righteousness, a protective force, and deadly cleansing force may be required to eliminate the forces of tyranny from a region.

Bending our knees to the One True God remains the most important national commitment since a Christian group-mind exerts a restraining pressure on human passions.  As humans we base our judgment of truth on evidence and experience.  But because our thoughts and feelings dominate our consciousness, we can be seduced into the self-validation of trusting that our thoughts and feelings prove truth.  We are drawn to secular humanism because we judge the rightness of our law based on human standards.

As Christians, we must continually compare the desires of Flesh with Biblical standards.  Likewise, we must continually renew the justification of our faith in preparation to defend against doubt, as well as to be ready to give a defense for those who are struggling with the faith.  Christendom has declared the Bible as a physical, external, God-inspired standard of moral perfection.  Archaeology, philosophy, and theology have endeavored to establish an apologetic justification of the Bible as God’s word.  As a national standard, we have embraced the Bible and Christianity as a large component of our national moral standard.

As a free people we can elevate any moral standard in our lives.  But as a wise people we should choose a standard which will produce the greatest and most enduring freedom.  We can understand the Biblical behavioral prescriptions as a guide for properly regulating God’s gift of free will.  Given our ability to choose, we can embrace evil or goodness.  But without an external standard, we humans remain susceptible to the easy seduction by the sirens of evil that cry so clearly and sweetly to our soul, calling us to crash the ship of self on the rocks of desire.

Governments, institutions, and individuals all are driven by power, pleasure, and gold.  And even though these drives will produce pain when exercised to excess, the soul must balance Godly restraint with indulgence.  It is in walking this fine balance between virtue and vice that we must depend on the Holy Spirit’s guidance.  And, in turn the nation’s goodness will expand as individuals submit their hearts and hands to the perfect standard of God.  The actions of nations will manifest the perfection of God when their laws and enforcement coincides with divine principles.  As individuals, our job is to enroll and encourage our fellow man in the adherence to the divine principles.  The Kingdom of Heaven draws ever more near to earth as this commitment generalizes in the hearts of men. 

Yes, the Iraqis and others abuse their people.  Such news is simply a reminder to continue in our daily efforts to institute the Absolute standards of Truth in our lives.  We can pretend that the abuse we see around the world is only the fruit of an evil Republican Administration whose only concern is enhancing their synergistic benefit with Big Business. This may be true, and we may be seeing one of the ugly fruits of Capitalism purchasing our representative democracy.  Or, these accusations may be another example of a story spun to slander the moral integrity of Republicans, get votes, and distract attention from the true problem. 

It is time to simply focus on establishing Christian moral standards nationally and internationally.  If there are nepotistic, monopolistic, government-industry cabals that are exalting themselves above righteousness, let them be exposed.  But, those who choose to focus only on the moral failures of Iraq in order to prove that the United States is morally bankrupt, have given aid and comfort to the enemy.  In order to be the best witness, we must constantly question the excellence of our Christian standards as we intervene to bring freedom to oppressed people.  The deception and arrogance of power can blind even the most spiritual eyes.  

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