Zack Strong: How Long Halt Ye Between Two Opinions?

Zack Strong

From Zack Strong at the Independent American Party website:

In ancient Israel, a sexually perverse and murderous cult which worshiped the idol god Baal – or Satan – gained control over the land. Dismayed with his people’s rejection of their God in favor of the archenemy of their souls, the prophet Elijah rebuked them with a piercing question:

“How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him.” – 1 Kings 18:21

There was no middle ground. There was no grey area. There was only one clear choice to be made: worship God or worship Lucifer. And they had to choose. No one could abstain then, just as no one can remain neutral now.

When an individual or nation neglects worship of God, they begin to worship Satan by default. This might be an unconscious choice, but it is the fruit of disobedience to God’s commandments. There is no neutral ground in this timeless war for the souls of men. We either serve our Eternal Father or we serve the Father of Lies.

When it is all said and done, every struggle – be it political, social, cultural, intellectual, etc – comes back around to Elijah’s statement. We must choose one path, and only one path. We cannot walk two paths simultaneously. We either serve God or we serve Satan.

The Bible says, “God forbid that we should forsake the Lord, to serve other gods” (Joshua 24:16). This sentiment is never stronger than when a nation is founded as a religious nation which honors God’s laws.

America was deliberately founded as a Christian nation by devout Christians. No, the government was not intended to be theocratic or to establish one church above another. Yet, these pious Founders wanted to bring about Zion. They saw America as the world’s bastion of Christianity and virtue. To a man, every last Founding Father was a Christian. The evidence is multitudinous in support of this assertion and I have detailed it in past articles.

For many decades, historians told the truth about our nation’s founding and about the good men who forged the constitutional government which has brought us so much Freedom, prosperity, peace, and influence in the world. Modern “historians,” however, claim that the Founders were deists or atheists – anything but Christians. Others attempt to besmirch the character of these virtuous men by spreading long-debunked falsehoods about their supposed sexual immorality. They slander the Founders by calling them aristocratic bigots who only sought to safeguard their own economic interests and who cared little about anyone’s rights. After all, weren’t some of them slaveholders? More subtly, historians overuse words like “rebels” and choose to highlight the instances in which early Americans broke British laws, such as by smuggling to get around oppressive restrictions on free trade. By doing this, they plant seeds of doubt in unsuspecting minds – seeds which they carefully water until they bloom into fully-rooted trees of disgust and derision towards our Founders and the free society and governmental structure they created. In support of our humble Founding Fathers, I want to briefly mention three of them.

In his autobiography, Benjamin Franklin – who is roundly considered the most irreligious of the Founders – said that in matters of virtue he tried to emulate Christ. Franklin frequently quoted from the Bible and spoke expectantly of an afterlife. Franklin wrote the following to Ezra Stiles on March 9, 1790:

“Here is my Creed: I believe in one God, Creator of the Universe. That He governs it by His Providence. That he ought to be worshipped. That the most acceptable Service we render to him, is doing Good to his other Children. That the Soul of Man is immortal, and will be treated with Justice in another Life respecting its Conduct in this.”

Those are not the feelings of an deist, let alone an atheist. Further, Franklin also pled with the Constitutional Convention in 1787 to appeal in prayer to God for inspiration – the same God, according to Franklin, Who answered their previous prayers and assisted them in winning the War for Independence. This man, contrary to the malicious lies spun about him, was a true, if not totally orthodox, believer in the God of the Bible and was an example of Christlike virtue. If you want a correct estimation of who Benjamin Franklin was, read the excellent book “The Real Benjamin Franklin” by the National Center for Constitutional Studies, as well as his autobiography.

Thomas Jefferson is also considered by most people to have been irreligious and a deist, if not an outright atheist. Unfortunately for those who absurdly make this claim, Thomas Jefferson penned the following statement: “I am a real Christian, that is to say a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus” (Jefferson to Charles Thomson, January 9, 1816). Did Jefferson accidentally write those words? Did he simply forget momentarily that he was an atheist? Did he not understand what it meant to be a Christian and a disciple of Jesus and therefore spoke out of ignorance? Obviously, such thoughts are ridiculous. Thomas Jefferson was, as he said he was, a “real Christian.” His family said that he read the Bible at night. He was good to those around him. He treated others humanely. Jefferson’s first act as a member of the House of Burgesses was to propose a law banning slavery which, unfortunately, failed to pass. He inherited his slaves and was not allowed to free them under Virginian laws of the time. He therefore did his best to educate them, to be just, and to treat them like family – all of which is attested to by family, friends, and his slaves.

In addition, Jefferson took all of the words of Christ out of the New Testament and compiled them into his own Bible because he loved the Savior’s teachings so much. He wrote that if Christ’s teachings would have been taught in their purity as He originally taught them, the entire civilized world would now be Christian. Jefferson longed for the day when “primitive Christianity” – or, the Christianity most in line with the Savior’s teachings – would take root in America. On one occasion he donated $50 dollars to a Bible society because he was shocked to learn that there were some families in the state of Virginia without a Bible. He even appealed to the Creator in his Declaration of Independence – a document signed and endorsed by his fellow Founders. Finally, as mentioned above, by all credible accounts – particularly those of his family and close associates – Jefferson was a good man, moral, just, and honest. I believe him when he wrote that he was a “real Christian.” For more on the Sage of Monticello, read “The Real Thomas Jefferson” by the National Center for Constitutional Studies.

Lastly, I want to highlight the shining example of George Washington. An increasing number of so-called historians attempt to paint Washington as a deist or atheist who was never very religious, or someone who had foggy beliefs about some non-specific higher power. Nothing could be further from the truth. Washington was a very believing man. He donated money to his local Christian churches, attended services, and wrote in his journal about fasting and praying. Washington also kept a prayer journal in which he recorded some very stirring petitions to God. As General, Washington was very strict to try to inculcate virtue into his soldiers. He did this by encouraging church attendance, by demanding his men not swear or gamble or drink, etc. He led by example and his conduct was above reproach. And lest we forget, it was Washington who added “so help me God” to the oath of office. Furthermore, Washington’s public speeches were filled with references to, and praises of, God. In his First Inaugural Address in 1789, Washington thanked God for all He had done for America. Said Washington:

“It would be peculiarly improper to omit in this first official act my fervent supplications to that Almighty Being who rules over the universe, who presides in the councils of nations, and whose providential aids can supply every human defect, that His benediction may consecrate to the liberties and happiness of the people of the United States a Government instituted by themselves for these essential purposes, and may enable every instrument employed in its administration to execute with success the functions allotted to his charge. In tendering this homage to the Great Author of every public and private good, I assure myself that it expresses your sentiments not less than my own, nor those of my fellow- citizens at large less than either. No people can be bound to acknowledge and adore the Invisible Hand which conducts the affairs of men more than those of the United States. Every step by which they have advanced to the character of an independent nation seems to have been distinguished by some token of providential agency; and in the important revolution just accomplished in the system of their united government the tranquil deliberations and voluntary consent of so many distinct communities from which the event has resulted can not be compared with the means by which most governments have been established without some return of pious gratitude, along with an humble anticipation of the future blessings which the past seem to presage.”

He concluded his speech with the following line:

“I shall take my present leave; but not without resorting once more to the benign Parent of the Human Race in humble supplication that, since He has been pleased to favor the American people with opportunities for deliberating in perfect tranquillity, and dispositions for deciding with unparalleled unanimity on a form of government for the security of their union and the advancement of their happiness, so His divine blessing may be equally conspicuous in the enlarged views, the temperate consultations, and the wise measures on which the success of this Government must depend.”

In his stirring 1796 Farewell Address, Washington made this firm statement:

“Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connections with private and public felicity. Let it simply be asked: Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle. It is substantially true that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government. The rule, indeed, extends with more or less force to every species of free government. Who that is a sincere friend to it can look with indifference upon attempts to shake the foundation of the fabric?”

In short, George Washington was a devout man, a believing man, and a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ whose devotion was easily detected in his actions. It is no big surprise that the father of a Christian country was himself a Christian. What a tremendous example he left us! For more on Washington, read the following books: “The Real George Washington” by the National Center for Constitutional Studies and “Washington’s Sacred Fire” by Peter A. Lilback.

I chose to highlight those three Founding Fathers because they are normally the three most maligned, distorted, and singled out as examples of supposed deism, atheism, hypocrisy, or improper personal conduct. The historical record is clear, however, that these claims are patently false. And what’s more, the other Founding Fathers not herein named are even more obviously Christian – several even holding seminary or theological degrees. Thus, you cannot find a single person we term a “Founding Father” who was a deist or an atheist. They were all Christians, whether orthodox or uniquely so. Every last one of them. They were not perfect men, but they were very good, very virtuous, and, I believe, chosen instruments in God’s hands to do the great work of laying the foundation of America in Freedom and securing it by instituting a written Constitution. We will one day answer to God if we dishonor them.

The strength of our founding generation was not simply in their political genius – of which they were in no small supply – but in their righteousness and their religious devotion. They were Christians who strove to live the Ten Commandments and conform their society to Biblical laws and teachings. They had many flaws, but, as a whole, were good people. The Lord favored them and prospered them. This was no surprise to them, and it should not be surprising to those of us familiar with the Lord’s teachings throughout the Bible. Here are a few such teachings:

“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.” – Pslams 33:12

“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all they ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” – Proverbs 3:5-6

“Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.” – Proverbs 14:34

“Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” – 2 Corinthians 3:17

“Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.” – Ecclesiastes 12:13

With such thoughts in their hearts, our forefathers forged a new nation – a righteous, Christian nation. They created the Constitution through divine inspiration and paved the way for the Freedom of all men everywhere to be realized. They bestowed upon a worthy people the profound responsibility and blessing of self-government. They created these United States as an asylum for all good people left in the earth. They held up their light to the rest of the world and invited all to come join them in building up the Kingdom of God. I honor them for their faithful, humble efforts and for the goodness of their hearts.

Our forefathers’ work has never been completed. In fact, it was halted fairly early on. A mere two generations after the united thirteen states gained their Independence and erected the Constitution, the government became corrupt, satanic secret societies assumed control, and the people began to forget their God. The nation was shortly thereafter split in two and has never recovered from the wound. Wickedness has spread steadily, and corruption has infiltrated every segment of society like a cancer. No longer do our leaders praise God in their speeches. No longer do Americans worship the Lord on the Sabbath. No longer are our pulpits ablaze with pure doctrine and messages about Liberty. No longer do our schools teach out of the Bible. No longer are individuals of good morals honored. No longer is America the truly Christian nation it once was. No longer are we the light on the hill. We have forsaken our God, forgotten His teachings, and now serve Satan – even if unwittingly.

“The Lord is with you, while ye be with him; and if ye seek him, he will be found of you; but if ye forsake him, he will forsake you.” – 2 Chronicles 15:2

The above verse contains an extraordinary promise to you and to me, and to our nation and the world. Our Creator has not placed us on earth to abandon us. We are His children. He cares for us. He wants to be our friend. He plays an active role in our individual lives. He is willing to assist us and reach out to us the second we are willing to take the first faltering step towards Him. If we seek Him, we’ll find Him. However, He will not run to us, as did the father in the parable of the prodigal son, unless we make the first steps in His direction – He respects our free will too much to force us. I testify that His infinite love and power and light will shine upon us if we as individuals, families, and nations make the first step back to our Holy Father.

We are told in Amos 6:1, “Woe to them that are at ease in Zion.” Our Redeemer has already won the ultimate victory for us, but we also know from holy writ and a basic survey of current events that things will get a lot worse before they get better. We cannot afford to be at ease, to ignore what’s going on in the world, or to become complacent or apathetic. We must become engaged and active. We must be watchmen on the tower. We must repent of our national sins. We must become righteous, choose God, and strive to have His Spirit with us so that we will be blessed. Such a course would bring us individual happiness, familial harmony, national prosperity and Liberty, and international peace. Our Father would run to us and throw His arms around us. We would be the children of God and He would direct our paths and bless us as a people.

The choice is ours. We can either serve God or Baal, the Eternal Father and His Son Jesus or Lucifer and his hosts of damned souls. We can choose Freedom, goodness, prosperity, and peace, or tyranny, iniquity, destitution, and tumult. Not only the fate of our nation, but the fate of our immortal souls depends upon this choice. So I repeat again what a prophet of old told his people: “How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him.” There is no middle ground. Choose a side.

As for me, I choose my Heavenly Father and my Savior Jesus Christ. I choose individual Freedom and accountability. I choose the Constitution and its glorious principles. To echo the Father of our Country, no true patriot will ever subvert the teachings of God nor any moral principle. And so it is.

The time is drawing late. The ranks of both sides are filling. The drums of war are beating loudly. What will you choose? Whose army will you join?

16 thoughts on “Zack Strong: How Long Halt Ye Between Two Opinions?

  1. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Baal” was a generic semitic-language word for “lord” and was for a long time indiscriminately applied to various gods, including Judaism’s YHWH. It eventually sort of coalesced around a regional god also called Hadad. It never had anything to do with “Lucifer.”

    Also, no, Jefferson did not “[take] all of the words of Christ out of the New Testament and compile them into his own Bible.” Jefferson’s “Bible” ended with the death of Christ and did not include the resurrection or any of Jesus’ alleged words spoken after the resurrection. He was being somewhat cryptic when he called himself a “true Christian” — he was a unitarian, who believed in one God and did not believe that Jesus was himself divine.

  2. Floyd Whitley

    Regarding the militant drums of war routine, I suggest instead: Matthew 26:52.

    And I would further suggest that the succeeding phrase be emphasized: Matthew 26:53.

    Those Christians who believe that they, by the strength and ferocity of their arms and their pounding war drums, can bring about heaven on earth are just as mistaken in that regard as are the Islamists.

    If that was the method, we would surely have by now. Selah.

    But that is not how it is brought about. And John 18:36 is very plain about that.

  3. Cody Quirk

    “Those Christians who believe that they, by the strength and ferocity of their arms and their pounding war drums, can bring about heaven on earth are just as mistaken in that regard as are the Islamists.”

    Too bad Riley Hood, Michael Peroutka, Don Grundmann, and others haven’t gotten that memo.

  4. Starchild

    In his article, Zack Strong writes, “We either serve our Eternal Father or we serve the Father of Lies.”

    That’s another way of saying that human beings have no choice but to be slaves, to one master or another.

    It’s a false dichotomy. You can choose freedom.

  5. Robert Capozzi

    starchild, it depends on how one reads that statement. If it said “We can serve Truth or Lies,” then that puts this idea into a different realm, at least for me.

  6. Floyd Whitley

    @ paulie

    As these things go, they are egging-on shots—in this instance thrown with a little deliberate intent, eh Paulie?, so as to generate content and traffic. I get that.

    My reply in this exchange may be atypical, differing from more commonplace “take the bait” responses.

  7. Floyd Whitley

    I have long argued on the need for “message management” by Constitution Party members.

    The Grundmann material, cited by Quirk, demonstrates the merits of this advice. The adage: “watch what you say” applies. Quirk’s efforts to prove guilt by association, waving a bloody shirt, shows why.

    For disclosure, I do not know Mr. Hood (Quirk’s boogeyman #1); nor do I know Mr. Grundmann (Quirk’s boogeyman #2). Nor do I know the whiney Mr. Quirk…nor do I care to.

    No doubt, Grundmann’s presentation was a poorly chosen, badly executed, “conceptual metaphor”.

    Apparently, he attempted to associate worship of the golden calf from the biblical account with the modern worship of homosexuality. In a stylistic tit-for-tat, Grundmann used tactics more in vogue with the debauched Left…seek shock value, deliberately offend and desensitize.

    In the promotion of debauchery, desensitization works perhaps too well. But in the promotion of righteousness…not so much. In fact, this rhetorical device is counter-productive. Its collateral damage is unsustainable. I am not necessarily one to be strictly politically correct. I simply prefer the “Irish approach”…more class.

    Regardless, members of the Constitution Party need to consider better their rhetorical choices. Firstly, Scriptures (Proverbs 15:1) instructs us.

    Secondly, it is wise to do so. After all, our own state website demographics suggest that 49% of our visitors are families with kids. And 19% of our website visitors are under the age of 18.

    Thus, because the Constitution Party calls ourselves to a higher standard, an obligation of responsibility and common decency is incumbent upon us…despite whether any others acknowledge these duties.

  8. paulie

    As these things go, they are egging-on shots

    Yes, I get that. I generally agree with your followup comment @ 1:40 pm.

    in this instance thrown with a little deliberate intent, eh Paulie?, so as to generate content and traffic. I get that.

    On whose part? Contrary to popular myth, I am not an owner or admin here, and get nothing from additional traffic, if you mean me. If you mean that it’s Grundmann, Riley, et al (and dare I say Quirk) who are conflict, drama and attention junkies, that’s true enough.

    My reply in this exchange may be atypical, differing from more commonplace “take the bait” responses.

    Off the cuff shots and joking aside, I appreciate that.

  9. paulie

    I have the authority to post and edit articles. I can also remove and edit any comments at any time, but I very rarely remove anything much less edit – except egregious cases or by the author’s request.

  10. paulie

    Those of us with such authority are volunteers, so we have no self-interest in internet traffic here. The actual owner/admins are Warren Redlich and his brother Steve, who can also post articles and comments here (as well as do other things the rest of us can’t – change site layout, add new IPR writer/editors, etc), but they rarely do anything at all here. The inmates run the asylum. No one cares much about internet traffic. The Redlichs have much higher traffic sites they own, and mostly just want this one to cover its server/bandwidth costs.

  11. Floyd Whitley

    Thanks for the organizational information, folks.

    Really, it was no big deal, nor did I think ill of the matter. I took it as a slight troll-istic nudge designed to spark an exchange, or discussion.

    As to the merits of IPR, for my tastes, it is a rare site, and somewhat indispensable because it provides a reasonable venue for so-called third parties, more or less well-prepared…though I must say the menu is a tad heavy with Libertarians…”saturated” in keeping with the metaphor.

    IPR, along with Richard Wingers Ballot Access News, at least allows for political choice that cannot be gotten in the “franchise chain” media.

    I am more a country cooking guy, more wholesome, meat on the bones. Not much for Waldorf Astoria cuisine…which is mostly about the plate (semblance over substance). Anyhow, that’s as close to a compliment (or a mea culpa) as you will ever get from me. The egg comment was merely off-the-cuff, poached I guess.

  12. paulie

    IPR is what people make of it. Feel free to bring friends, ask to sign up to post articles, etc.

    I eat many kinds of cuisine. When it comes to eggs I usually go with either scrambled or boiled, most of the time.

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