Charges of voter fraud in the last election began the day after the election. Many examples have been cited. Thousands of affidavits have been given. A number of cases were filed with the courts. Some of the claims have been debunked. Others remain to be proven or disproven. Most Americans don’t have the time to follow all of the evidence, and many don’t know exactly what to make of it. All they know is that Joe Biden was inaugurated as the President of the United States, so the election is settled for all intents and purposes.

I was one of those Americans that followed the claims of fraud quite closely early on, but time is precious, and eventually life has to go on. I don’t get paid to follow the news. I resolved that there seemed to be clear evidences of localized fraud, but the number of votes affected by those clear examples did not appear to be enough to change the outcome of the election. I have always been open to the possibility that the fraud was sufficient to have changed the outcome of the election, but was not willing to say the election was stolen unless and until it could be demonstrated by the evidence. I have no tolerance for conspiracy theories or speculation. Evidence must win the day.

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The latest scare being proffered by the media is that it isn’t safe to be an Asian in America. Headlines everywhere read “Asian hate crime is up 150%.”

Is this true? Technically, yes, at least according to the calculations of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University San Bernardino. However, when you look at the actual number of incidents, it becomes clear that violence against Asians is not an epidemic in this country.

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A new Gallup poll reveals that church membership has decreased 23% over the last 20 years. Roughly 70% of Americans were members of a church from 1940 through 2000, but since 2000 church membership has quickly declined. It fell 9% from 2000 to 2010, and 14% from 2010 to 2020.

Gallup attributes more than half of the drop in church attendance to the increase in those who no longer identify with any particular religion. However, even among the religiously affiliated, church membership is down across all age demographics (but rates are higher the younger the demo).

More than 80 fragments of Nahum and Zechariah (not all have text written on them) were recently discovered in the Judean desert. These are the first Dead Sea Scrolls discovered in 60 years. Apparently, these fragments belong to a scroll of the Minor Prophets that was discovered in this same cave more than 60 years ago. That scroll, and these new fragments, are written in Greek rather than Hebrew. One of the interesting features of this scroll is that the name of God is written in paleo Hebrew, which is the ancient Hebrew script. Hopefully more scrolls will soon be discovered.

See:

Biblical Archaeology Society

The Jerusalem Post

I would like to know your thoughts on a potential name change for this blog.

From day one, “theosophical ruminations” has caused a small bit of confusion. “Theosophical” is a combination of “theology” and “philosophical,” but it sounds similar to “theosophy,” which is not a movement I want to be confused with.

I’m considering renaming the site to “Theogetical Ruminations?” Theogetical is a combination of “theology” and “apologetical.” Not only would this distance me from any association with theosophy, but it would describe the blog a bit better. I focus much more on theology and apologetics (theogetical) than I do on theology and philosophy (theosophical).

What say ye? Keep theosophical, or change it to theogetical?

In Meriwether v Hartop, the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of a professor who refused to call a student by his preferred (feminine) pronouns (see Law & Crime for the backstory to the case). The 3-panel court ruled that this violated both his free speech and religious rights. This is a big win for those advocating for both common sense and free speech in regards to preferred gender pronouns.

Language is sexed. Pronouns are meant to match one’s biological sex, not their personal sense of gender identity. If a biological boy thinks of himself as a girl, that’s fine, but he remains a biological male nonetheless, and as such, according to the English rules of grammar, should be referred to with male pronouns. In the same way the boy has a right to think of himself as a girl, we have a right to use language the way we see fit – which, in this case, accords with both biological reality and the rules of English grammar. No one should be compelled to use certain speech or deny biological reality.

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If you haven’t heard of the story regarding the dad jailed for calling his trans-son “daughter” and using female pronouns, you need to. He was arrested for “family violence.” While this happened in Canada, given the trajectory in the U.S., it won’t be long before this kind of thing happens here as well. Indeed, we are on the precipice of this happening here already.

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Equality and equity do not mean the same thing. Equality is everyone being treated equal and getting what they deserve. Equity means fairness, but the way the political Left understands equity is anything but fair. They see equity as ensuring the same outcome whether you deserve it or not, and largely based on comparing groups to groups rather than individuals to individuals. This sort of equity is not achieved by treating everyone equally, but by treating some groups unequally so that the results are the same for all groups. If group A makes more money than group B, then policies are instituted that hurt group A but benefit group B so that the two groups will have the same outcome. Unfairness in the name of fairness. Don’t fall for this verbal deception. That’s not equity. Support equality of opportunity, not equality of outcome.

It’s common to hear theologians and apologists claim that Jesus’ self-designation, “son of man,” is a reference to the divine/exalted figure in Daniel 7:13-14. As such, Jesus’ use of “son of man” is a claim to deity. However, there are two problems with this conclusion. First, while Jesus referred to Himself as “son of man” many times, He only connected the term with Daniel 7:13-14 on one occasion (Mt 26:64-66; Mk 14:62-64; Lk 22:67-71). Is it reasonable to think that Jesus’ understanding of this phrase is based entirely on Daniel 7 when He only connected the phrase with Daniel 7 on one occasion at the end of His ministry? While I do not doubt that Jesus saw Himself as the son of man figure of Daniel 7, I do not think this exhausted His understanding or use of the phrase.

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There are differences of opinion regarding whether it is moral or beneficial for transgender people to undergo gender reassignment surgery. Regardless of where you land in that debate, everyone should be able to agree that it is unfair to allow “transgender women” (biological men who identify as women) to compete in women’s sports.

This is not about equality, but fairness. Biological males have clear physical advantages over biological females, guaranteeing that transgender women will beat all or most biological women in sports. That is why we have always separated sports by sex. Allowing transgender women to compete in women’s sports is not fair to biological women. They practice and train for years to be the best among women, only to be beaten by a biological male.

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When in a discussion, I tend to be quick to note my disagreement when someone says something I disagree with. I am prone to immediately launch into all the reasons I think they are wrong, followed by presenting and arguing for my own point of view. Unfortunately, this is not the best approach to resolving disagreement.

The mantra I am trying to live by is “make them justify before you falsify.” What does this mean? Before you ever attempt to falsify someone’s belief or statement, ask them why they think it is true. Why do they believe what they believe? What reasons do they have? The burden of proof is always on the person making the claim. It’s not our job to show why they are wrong, but their job to demonstrate that they are right.

If you pause a moment to make them justify their claim, you’ll often find that they have little-to-no justification, or that their reasons are quite bad. Once they realize that they have no (or poor) justification, they will likely be more open to your critique of their view as well as your own view. So the next time you are tempted to voice your disagreement, make them justify before you falsify.

The Left is always advocating that we raise taxes on the rich. It’s common to hear them say “the rich should pay their fair share in taxes.” I agree that people should pay their fair share in taxes, which is why I oppose raising taxes on the rich. In fact, I propose that we lower taxes on the rich and raise taxes on the poor (by which I simply mean the “non-rich”). Why? It’s because the rich already pay more than their fair share while the poor pay less than their fair share. As of 2017, the top 1% U.S. income earners made 21% of the total income, but pay 38.5% of all federal income taxes. If they were paying their fair share, they would be paying 21% of all taxes, not 38.5%. In fact, the top 1% pay more in taxes than the bottom 90% combined (29.9%). Even if you widen the net to the top 50% of income earners, this group pays 96.7% of all taxes. That means the bottom 50% of income earners only pay 3% of federal taxes. While the top 1% pay an average of 26.8% of their income in taxes, the bottom 50% only pays an average of 4% (6x less).[1] Does this sound fair to you? So on what grounds can one legitimately claim that the rich are not paying their fair share, and need to be taxed even more?

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Why doesn’t God give people a second chance to be saved after death (Heb 9:27)? Surely those who go to hell would want to repent once they are faced with the consequences of their sin, right? Wrong. This idea underestimates these people’s disposition toward God. They know God exists (Ps 19:1-4; Rom 1:18-32; 2:12-16), but they hate Him and refuse to acknowledge Him by repenting of their sins (Ps 83:2; Jn 3:20; 7:7; 15:18,23-24; Rom 1:30; Rev 9:20; 16:9,11). They reject His moral authority over their lives. While they do not like their punishment, they don’t want the alternative either. They don’t love God, and they don’t want to be with Him for eternity. It’s not so much that God will not give them a second chance to repent as it is that they would not take Him up on His offer if He were to give it.

If you think the only argument against abortion is a religious argument, please examine the pro-life case more closely. While a religious argument can be made, it is not necessary. The pro-life argument stands or falls on biological facts plus philosophical/moral reasoning. It’s very simple:

(1) It’s morally wrong to kill innocent human beings without proper justification (the philosophical/moral premise)
(2) The science of embryology demonstrates that a new, distinct human being comes into existence at conception (the scientific premise)
(3) It follows from (1) and (2) that abortion kills an innocent human being
(4) Therefore, abortion is morally wrong

If you are going to argue for abortion, you’ll need to falsify one of the first two premises above. Will you deny the moral truth that it’s wrong to kill innocent human beings, or will you deny the scientific facts of embryology?


Many people (non-Christians and Christians alike) find it morally outrageous that God would consign people to an eternity in hell to pay for a finite number of sins committed here on Earth. As a result, some people reject Christianity, some deny that hell is eternal, and others choose to live with the theological tension. None of this is necessary, however, because this understanding of hell is based on false assumptions. It falsely assumes that the purpose of hell is only to pay for sins committed prior to death, which, in turn, falsely assumes that people stop sinning in hell. Neither is true.

Yes, hell is a place where people will be punished for their sins, but it is also a place where the sinners who are being punished for their sins will go on sinning for eternity. They sin on Earth and in heaven. Think about it. Does anyone believe that those in hell suddenly become good people? Do we really think that they undergo complete sanctification upon entering hell? Of course not. They will continue to sin against God for eternity. They will continue in their moral rebellion and rejection of God. And that is why they will continue to be punished by God for eternity.

We are saved by faith, not works, but the faith that saves is a faith that works. True saving faith will produce good works. Faith, not works, is the causal condition for salvation, but good works are the necessary effect of our saving faith. That doesn’t mean we will be perfect, but it does mean we will be moving toward perfection via the process of sanctification.

Abortion is often compared to the practice of child sacrifice practiced by many ancient cultures, including those in OT times. It is not a 1:1 comparison, of course. Those who get abortions are not doing so for religious reasons, and the age of the children are different. However, in both cases, human beings are choosing to kill their own children. God hates murder, whatever the reason or the age of the victim.

I find it interesting, then, that God not only condemned those who committed child sacrifice, but also those who stood by silently and did nothing to those who sacrificed their children. Consider Leviticus 20:1-5. God begins with a condemnation of those who commit child sacrifice:

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Our biggest temptation as humans is works righteousness – thinking that we can earn our salvation by own goodness. Ask the average nominal Christian in America how he knows he is saved and you’re likely to hear, “Well, I’m a pretty good person.” Even those who recognize that they are saved by grace alone often feel the temptation to believe they are “kept,” at least in part, by their good works. While we are certainly saved for good works (Eph 2:8-10; Tit 2:11-12), good works cannot save us or keep us saved. Our trust in Jesus alone saves us. Faith causes salvation – good works are the effect.

We could never do enough good works to be accepted by God because, in God’s economy, good works cannot cancel out evil works. And it’s our evil works that are the problem. They are an affront to God’s holiness. If we are to have a relationship with a holy God, our evil works have to be dealt with. The problem is that mankind has no ability to atone for his evil works. Only God can do that. And He did. He became a man and paid the penalty for our sin (death) on the cross. The sinless man died in the place of sinful man. The way we access the atonement God provided for us is by trusting in Jesus and what He did for us on the cross. Since God’s acceptance of us is based entirely on Jesus’ work rather than our own, God’s continued acceptance of us is also based on Jesus’ work rather than our own (Rom 5:8-11).

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Sometimes we portray Jesus as providing us with a ladder to bridge the chasm between our sinful selves and a holy God. Jesus made a way for us to reach God. This is inaccurate. Jesus didn’t just provide us with a ladder and tell us to climb, but Jesus provided the ladder and climbs it for us. We get to the top – not by climbing it ourselves – but by riding on the back of Jesus.

The victim card is a hot card these days. And when there’s not enough opportunities to be a real victim, people literally fake victimhood (think of the multitude of “hate crime” hoaxes). Why would anyone want to be a victim? Because of identity politics. Victimhood = power and prestige in today’s upside-down world.
 
None of this is to deny that there are real victims. However, there’s a difference between having been a victim to some wrong and maintaining a victim mindset. The victim card is not an acknowledgement of past wrongs, but often an excuse for one’s present situation. You are not a victim. That may have been one of your experiences in life, but it is not your identity.
 
To those who think of themselves as a victim, I ask you one question: Who is in control of your life? Is it you, or the person(s)/situation who/that victimized you? Don’t let that one person or one event define your life. No one can control your life unless you let them. So don’t let them. You are not a victim to anybody or anything. You are a victor if you choose to be.