CultureWatch

Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

Courage in the Face of Battle

Mar 19, 2019

Most of us are not on actual front lines, with machine guns in our hands, bullets flying overhead, and bombs exploding all around us. For that we can all be thankful. And we can also be thankful for those who ARE there, who do serve in this way and help protect our nation and keep us safe.

But there is a metaphorical war that we are all involved in – or all SHOULD be involved in. It is being fought on so many levels: it is a spiritual war, a moral war, an ideological war, a culture war, a political war, and more. Certainly if you are a Christian you should know all about these battles and you should be engaged in them.

With relentless and ferocious attacks on everything we hold near and dear – faith, family, freedom, etc. – we ALL must be involved in these battles and NONE of us should have the luxury of just sitting on the sidelines, watching others do all the fighting and all the heavy lifting.

You either stand up for what is right and take on the never-ending attacks, or you wimp out. If the latter, you have effectively gone over to the other side. You are no longer standing for your Lord and what he values and cherishes, but you are standing for our spiritual foe.

It is your call. Where do you stand? Sure, not everyone can be directly involved in some of these battles, whether as a politician, or a lobbyist, or a culture warrior, or even a keyboard warrior. But at the very least we can and should all be praying, and many of us can be doing so much more.

Since the internet and the social media have become such a big part of our lives – at least in the West – we all can use these new technologies for the Kingdom. We can all share truth on things like Facebook. We can all share biblical passages, or inspiring quotes, or links to important articles, or incisive videos, and so on.

That is the least we can do. Yes, even here we need tact and wisdom as to what we post, when to post, how to post, and why we post. Sometimes caution and care is needed in what we share online. But I suspect that all Christians who are on the social media can do so much more in this regard.

Often the main thing keeping us from doing this is fear, cowardice, or concerns about upsetting others. I have often written about the need to stand strong for Christ, and not be bound by such fear. See here for example: billmuehlenberg.com/2013/07/18/fear-faith-and-fortitude/

And here: billmuehlenberg.com/2016/12/09/stop-trying-please-everyone/

Let me now narrow the focus and discuss one small example of this sort of thing. It has to do with my website, and the comments on it. At the moment there are nearly 68,000 posted comments. I have to vet every comment that comes in, deciding if it is posted or not, and then deciding if I need to respond to any of those posted comments.

Of course many thousands of comments that come in are not posted, usually because they violate my clearly stated commenting rules. But here is a scenario that arises now and then. When it does, it bothers me a bit, so let me speak to it in some detail.

Every once in a while, a person who has sent in a comment will later ask me to remove it, or radically alter it. What follows is an expanded version of the sort of reply I usually send to such folks:

Thanks ____. I get similar requests from time to time. I can alter or remove comments if need be, but I am not too thrilled with this for several reasons. First of all, it is actually quite a time-consuming job. And I don’t have heaps of free time. Nor do I have secretarial help. To change or delete a comment often means I need to manually go through 68,000 comments to track them down then deal with them.

Another problem is if people have replied to your comment, then I need to track down their comments as well and alter them, or sometimes delete them, because they no longer make any sense. It all gets to be a rather complex and time-consuming job.

My second – and more important – concern is this: why this request? There may be some legitimate reasons here, such as a person running for office – maybe even seeking to become prime minister! Such folks may well want any possibly damaging comments removed.

But I suspect that for most people, they just are a bit hesitant about standing up and being counted in the public arena. They may be afraid, or worried about what others think, or have a fear of man. But if that is the case, guess what? Then the other side has already won. They have intimidated us into silence. In that case I might as well shut down my website and turn myself in to the authorities. They won, and we have lost.

Now, I can understand all such concerns and fears – I really can. I regularly get hate mail and I sometimes get death threats. It sure ain’t nice. But I have to ask, where is the courage of our convictions? Can we not stand up unashamedly about what we have said, or have we allowed the other side to cower us, intimidate us, and effectively silence us?

My view is that unless we really have a strong and urgent reason for wanting to change or pull comments, I would rather leave them on. Why can’t we just be bold in proclaiming truth, and be willing to courageously make a difference, even if it means we might take some flak? So I leave it to you if you think you still have compelling reasons to make these changes.

Let me finish by offering a few encouraging quotes on courage – something we all need in greater measure in these dark days:

“Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point.” C. S. Lewis

“Courage is almost a contradiction in terms. It means a strong desire to live, taking the form of a readiness to die.” G. K. Chesterton

“Courage we shall need, and for the exercise of it we have as much reason as necessary, if we are soldiers of King Jesus.” C. H. Spurgeon

“Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens.” J. R. R. Tolkien

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” Winston Churchill

“Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened.” Billy Graham

“Evil is powerless if the good are unafraid.” Ronald Reagan

“Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all you that hope in the Lord.” Psalm 31:24

I concluded my previous article with these words: “I will not shy away from saying such things, even if it does eventually result in this site being shut down, or me thrown into the slammer. Here I stand. I can do no other.”

I still believe that. Who is with me?

[1214 words]

26 Responses to Courage in the Face of Battle

  • I still believe that and am with you, Bill!

  • I am with you Bill.
    Isa 6:8  Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me. 

  • Hi Bill, well argued, and well written. One of the principle reasons that I get so much out of your articles, is because YOU PUT SO MUCH EFFORT INTO THOROUGHLY RESEARCHING YOUR TOPIC before touching the keyboard. The left have shown time and time again what an incredibly lazy bunch they are. Character assassination is their main tool of warfare, and let’s face it, any moron can do that. I still remember fondly all those years ago when you were my ethics lecturer at the old Richmond Temple. If I had handed in a poorly researched and crappy assignment, guess what, you would have marked that assignment “appropriately”. A well researched and documented argument is one tool your opponents will rarely use, because it takes time and methodical hard work. As one little voice amongst all your genuine supporters, I say, THANKS BILL, “PLEASE KEEP DISHING IT OUT”, blessings, Kel.

  • With you both in prayer and standing up Bill.

  • Presently, I am engaged in a battle with a self confessed homosexual Gary Burns who litigated on numerous occasions against good Christian and family people such as Bernard Gaynor.
    Burns made a formal complaint against me for daring to say that Priests to have sex with boys are not only pedophiles but homosexuals also. This came about when Burns made comment on social media that pedophile priests should be killed.
    I have been given the opportunity to challenge the entire Anti Discrimination Act 1977 NSW as ultra vires because it infringes on the exclusive right of the Commonwealth to enact discrimination laws under section 51. xxvi of the Constitution.
    My philosophy on taking battle is:
    Step one. If you must go into battle – learn to enjoy it as that will free up your nerves;
    Step two. Take only your duty into battle and nothing else lest it will make you too cautious and forget the fundamentals.
    As to the present fight, I have prepared myself to a long lasting fight and to the end as that will demoralize the opposition who will tire of the fight and realise that they may start the fight but they will never – ever finish it.
    John Abbott

  • Thanks John. Keep standing strong – we will pray for you.

  • Agree with you totally Bill. We live in challenging times and need to pray about and voice the truth. Also, all readers need to carefully weigh up their comments so they need not cause you a loss of time in seeking to remove them later.

  • We should be courageous but we should also be smart.

    I have more information to share if you are like me and you are concerned about being tracked by Police and security services.

    NZ Police have contacted a website called Kiwi Farms run by Joshua Moon, an “alt-right, anti-feminist, pro-white Trump supporter”. The Police demanded he hand over posts by the Christchurch shooter including IP addresses.

    https://www.news.com.au/technology/online/website-kiwi-farms-refuses-to-surrender-data-linked-to-accused-christchurch-terrorist-brendan-tarrant/news-story/46d3c925ef84b24dde6194c42b3c2241

    Now you have to understand what an IP address is. Wherever you go on the internet, you leave a record of your IP address and the authorities can use it to trace anything you look at or write back to your home address or your mobile number. Each has a unique IP address.

    You might be thinking that’s ok. If the Police came and asked Pastor Bill for my IP address just to persecute me for being a Christian he would be like Joshua Moon and would not hand it over.

    But Australia is different to NZ. Our “conservative” government passed laws forcing internet companies to retain the “metadata” including IP addresses and everywhere we go on the internet. “Metadata” doesn’t include what you write but it includes enough information to match your IP addresse to comments posts on websites they are now closely monitoring. And they don’t need Pastor Bill to hand this information over to them, they already have it thanks to Prime Minister Abbott.

    This is how they quickly tracked down an Adelaide man for posting something the authorities didn’t like and even if they did not arrest him for what he posted, they arrested him on trumped up charges for possession replica weapons. The MSM will tell you he’s facing a “firearm charge”. You have to do your own research to know it was a replica gun that could not ever be fired. The other “weapons” were replica medieval crossbows and maces to be displayed or used in medieval reenactments. The Deep State will use any pretext if they want to get you, just ask President trump.

    Don’t be stupid, don’t be naive. Use a VPN or proxy server to protect yourself.

    If you don’t you’re going to come to the attention of ASIO and the AFP. I was told if you just visit billmuehlenberg.com one time and read a couple of pages, you will be ok. But if you visit many times and then visit another website* they think is right wing and spend a lot of time there, and then go on to another one, that is when the authorities could start paying more attention to you. You might end up on a watch list with Pastor Bill and Andrew Bolt. If this sounds like your surfing history, get a VPN or proxy server A.S.A.P.!!!

    *Websites that could trigger the authorities include Cauldron Pool, Christian Lives Matter, Bill Muehlenberg, Bernard Gaynor, Voice Of Europe, The Unshackled, Pickering Post, Michael Smith News, The Dingoes, XYZ, & Verum Media.

  • I am with you Bill. If we don’t stand against evil we will live under it.

  • Thanks Bill,
    Your’e right. So often the attacks are coming from all directions at the moment and you just think you are disempowered sadly. No-one seems to want to know the truth. It’s wearisome. But Courage is the antidote. Thanks for the reminder and thanks for the stir from the quote’s of others before.
    His kingdom and righteousness still rule, Praise him.

  • Dear Bill
    I am with you Bill and with King Jesus. He sets the path straight there is no turning back, no turning back.
    God Bless all those who serve the King of kings and Lord of lords, Jesus Christ
    Mark Bryant

  • Hi Bill,
    I enjoyed this article, and agree with you. We should all try to have the courage to express our opinions.

    Can you please delete this after you have finished reading it.

  • Thanks James. Satire and irony often do not translate well online, but I will assume you were engaging in both! If not, you lose! (This seems to be your first comment on CW, so I don’t know you, but I take it you have a great sense of humour!)

  • You’re an inspiration to many, Bill!
    God bless you.

  • You must have deleted my previous comments, Bill! There were one or two of them – easy to miss! I usually hesitate to add to the 68,000 comments you need to wade through, but felt this needed to be said.

    I often feel we lack a sarcasm mark. In this case, if some kind of joke mark had been invented I would have used it! Thanks for your reply.

  • Thanks James. Sorry, I have just now discovered your earlier comments.

  • Great post-Mr M. I am going to print out those quotes on courage and make them as my background on windows.

    I would love to say I stand by you in each and every post, in something other than prayer, but my dad sometimes tells me to let the adults comment first and once he said only adults were to comment which was on your NZ articles. I think it’s because he still sees me as a child, which I am not. I would always comment like-for-like in responding to posts, often better than like-for-like.

    However, this situation will go away as I get older, but it seems such a long time to have to wait.

    I think the way forward if you do not mind me saying is to take the message from a previous article of yours- https://billmuehlenberg.com/2019/03/17/bible-study-helps-judges/

    Where you pointed out, the importance of having a leader which is relevant here but let me explain, it is important we form into something more than, ‘I am a Christian’ since’, I am a Christian’ is nothing more than a part of the whole in the sense of a battle. Yes, I know you said the prescriptive non-prescriptive thing, but since God prescribed Moses and you were effectively telling us that, simply by mentioning Moses by name so we would then check biblically what you say, even though you are a very nice godly man indeed, with many, many books backing you up. God did prescribe Moses and as you said leadership offers benefits, I paraphrase. I think we could learn much from the left on this matter oddly, hmm now I come to think about it who understands the power and meaning of that passage more, the atheistic far left certainly, not Gods own I think. I, at least am found wanting anyway. You are wondering where this is going, well I am going to say something and it takes courage on my part since it may mean my post may never see the light of your comments section, then I will know I got it all wrong and I hate getting things wrong since I then know I am still a child.

    So- I do not think there is any point in commenting on this thread and saying I am with you Bill, (I mean no disrespect in addressing you by your first name, neither do I mean any disrespect to those who at least take the trouble to comment in the positive.) The problem is it only serves to give you a much-needed boost since you felt alone in the battle. I feel that way in class sometimes too, but we have been set apart to fight and die for Christ and it seems to me, dying is something we have to do, alone. Dying repeatedly for Christ after all is just making it easier to die into our eternity with him perhaps.

    I think we should take the names of those on this blog thread, (what I am about to say may mean you get a request to remove some posties . . .sorry. Perhaps one of the men who has the strength and intellect (that’s all the Christian men.) other than you Mr M since you have a role already, and that man becomes a leader of this particular group of names who will direct our comments and actions so they are more effective, then if Mr M comes under attack from a postie we are directed to respond for him or with him on block, we behave like brothers and sisters in Christ instead of just saying we are. I understand many may do this individually anyway. but the object is to grow the “Names” to hundreds, further, we would not be restricted to just this blog but be used anywhere we are needed in Christendom. In a year we could become so large we would be feared instead of fearing. I understand it would take a lot of organising to form an army and keep them disciplined. from the point of view of the soldiers, it would mean only producing one or two posts a week and the comments section where those my age are excluded from by our dads would mean we could produce a post for another to use. I think if we are going to claim we are influenced by the Bible then we need to put that into action. If it doesn’t work or its to hard to implement then at least we can say we tried as a family rather than individuals which was the point of the post on Judges.

    I think perhaps some of the young boys who bravely fought in the war were braver for being apart of something bigger. I think we have got to stop reading books of the bible like its an exercise in history and start using the wisdom found within those books, and when one of our numbers fall in battle, bury him/her and continue the battle since it will soon be our turn to meet the commanding chief (is that the highest office in the army?) to give an account of our part in the battle.

    So, these are the names I can see at the time of writing this post.
    James Nolet.
    Bill Muehlenberg.
    Mark Bryant.
    Colin Gardiner.
    Gail Foster.
    Michael Taouk.
    Graham Lawn.
    John Abbott.
    Ess Grubb.
    Kelvin Nairn.
    Marissa Sorensen.
    Michael Evans.
    —–
    Sarah Clark.
    katie Matthews.
    Atheistic ? Alice.
    Molly Kirkpatrick.

    I was talking to a very, very old man, older than my oldest book! in a home that our church youth visited on Sunday evening and this very old man indeed, told me in the war sometimes he had to fight overwhelming odds, sometimes they had to retreat yet other times regroup but he never had to surrender, just for a moment I saw the young man in him, hopefully not for the last time. I told him, thank you so much for what you did, but I have to ask yet two more things of you, he said with some concern, what is it child, (I let the child comment pass. lol) and said give to the boys here with me today that spirit of courage you have and let me offer you a spirit, that you may not only look up to but will comfort and live with you for all the rest of the days of your life. I told him about Jesus, the Holy Spirit and the love of God, he said his mother had told him many years ago that one day a beautiful young woman would capture his heart and God would radiate from her, he said she was a very long time in the coming (I do not know if his wife is still with him) and I said to him the battle for freedom you were fighting for is taking place again and it’s taking us a very long time to win. One of the elders and church members are going to visit him so as to get to know him, so he will have those around him who know and love him when he takes his last few breaths on earth and hopefully when he opens his eyes on the other side he will experience victory, as for me, I will call on him in the meantime on my way home from church with one of the boys so that boy may get his input of courage. I, for my part, will take in contraband, home-baked cakes, I may even consider baking a cake with a saw in so he may escape his prison.

    We need to be like this very old soldier, he hungers for his past so he may put his life on the line once again so he may hear his mother’s words, let us do likewise, but seek our father’s words. So is there a man prepared to step forward?

  • Most Christians fail to fight against the onslaught of the enemy in tangible ways we can and must use unless we intend to surrender the territory we were commanded by Jesus to OCCUPY. We must defend it or hand it over to the minions of Satan .

    There is a spiritual battle fought on our knees against principalities and powers and spiritual wickedness in high places, but there is also a real objective effort we must make to hold onto the victories God gives us. We have to secure Liberty and Justice for all by educating our neighbors with the gospel and with the facts of the political reality that Socialist-Marxist goals are threatening our right to speak in Jesus’ name.

    We have to use what is in our hands – Facebook, Twitter, or other social media to convince others to join in defeating the enemy. The enemy of our country and the enemy of our souls is one and the same – Lucifer.

    We fight for our children, our brothers, and our neighbors for Jesus’ sake. ” ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of Mine, you did for Me.” Matthew 25:40

  • Always with you, Bill and ALL other Blessed Christian Warriors.
    What an AMAZING difference YOU personally (through The Power of God’s Most Blessed Holy Spirit) have made in my life and the implications of this flowing onto others.
    Father God, we thankyou for this Blessed Ministry of Culture Watch!
    Help us ALL to continue to strive to do more & more to promote Your Life -Giving Word of Truth, Light & Love.
    In Jesus Mighty Name We pray Amen

  • Courage and determined action certainly do work plus having truth on your side. E.g.

    https://www.massresistance.org/docs/gen3/19a/MR-TX-Houston-DQSH-battle/media-firestorm.html

    The shame is how bad things have to get first.

  • Dear Bill,

    Thank you for standing. I stand with you.
    May I review a small paragraph from above please?

    “It is your call. Where do you stand? Sure, not everyone can be directly involved in some of these battles, whether as a politician, or a lobbyist, or a culture warrior, or even a keyboard warrior. But at the very least we can and should all be praying, and many of us can be doing so much more.”
    And in particular “…many of us can be doing so much more”.
    Also, Marie B. above uses the phrase “..political reality..”

    Where I am heading to is here; it is a political reality that we can never have good (Godly) government until we have a critical mass of good (Godly) people involved in all areas of government.
    As Christians we are charged with praying for government and those in authority (Romans 13:1).
    Franklin Graham writes: “I can’t help but ask myself if all Christians had fulfilled this admonition and been faithful to pray for our leaders, would our nation—even our world—be different today? Can our diligent, heartfelt prayers make a difference for the future? Most certainly”.

    May I suggest that EVERY Christian has the ability to be directly involved at a political level, WITHOUT requiring a significant amount of time and money – and I am not talking about just turning up to vote on polling day.

    Please consider this:
    1. Make sure you understand the signs of the times that we live in and that which Marie refers to above: “..threatening our right to speak in Jesus’ name”. Know exactly what each party’s policies are and how they affect the family and that they align with your Christian values.

    2. Join a dedicated; regular political prayer group and pray as Mr Graham suggests.

    3. Join a significant political party (along with other Christians) with the intention of changing it from within – it won’t happen overnight, but it will happen with your help.

    4. Discover (depending on the party) that by attending as little as 2-3 meetings each year, you can vote on party policies, vote good people into internal party roles and even pre-select good candidates over bad ones for your electorate (both state AND federal) approx. every 3 years.

    So far, this is only a very small time and $ commitment.

    5. For some that are able, they can work their way further into the party mechanism and drive change for good.

    There is an opportunity to do so much more.

  • Catallaxy Files poster Cassie of Sydney predicts what the future will look like if things keep on going like they are right now:

    “on 19/Mar/2019 we have evidence that you watched a Paul Joseph Watson video.
    on 20/Mar/2019 you liked a tweet by Trump.”

    It’s coming…just like winter….you also forgot the charge…

    “on 20/Mar/2019, we have evidence that you read and commented on a far-right, hard-right, nazi site called Catallaxy Files”

    Judge to Cassie….How do you plead?

    Cassie to Judge…Guilty Your Honour.

    This will be us. All of us.

  • New Zealand T.V. and radio is going to broadcast the Islamic Call to Prayer:

    “To acknowledge this, there will be a two-minute silence on Friday. We will also broadcast nationally via TVNZ and RadioNZ the Call to Prayer.”

    https://www.michaelsmithnews.com/2019/03/nz-prime-minister-orders-national-broadcast-of-muslim-call-to-prayer-this-friday.html

  • About Friday and all this pro-Muslim stuff in NZ.
    Lets pray for courage for those who refuse to;..
    -wear headscarves,..
    -bow the knee at the call to prayer…
    -agree with their MSM employer to broadcast this stuff..
    -to submit to their school’s PC notions about this..
    -to go along with their work place symbolisms..
    -join in with their club, church, or volunteer org on this.
    -bend to family pressure.
    We can and should be showing sympathy and compassion here, and in appropriate ways, but it is a big leap to begin adopting pro-Muslim practices and symbols. Doing that is very close to saying that we agree with Islam.

  • Yes Bruce Knowling.
    What unsettles me a little is the latching on to Muslim dress and symbolism in a show of sympathy or solidarity ? I guess those who are secularists do this type of thing to express their condolences and sympathy but to me it just looks like tokenism.
    If you are not committed to Islam then why are you dressing up in such a way. You can express your humanity and love and sympathy without this. The NZ PM is terrific and compassionate and a heck of a smart lady. I guess the emotion and shock of it all just overwhelmed her and that’s understandable. She just looks out of place sadly on the front page of our newspapers dressed in Muslim attire for women. But as the PM of NZ she is well within her right to express her grief and solidarity with her Muslim New Zealanders in the way she chooses. A terrible terrible event indeed.
    That’s what freedom of expression is I guess. Prayers for her and the NZ people.

  • When I think of what the NZ PM is calling on New Zealanders to do today this purely comes from an emotional reaction and a secularist that believes in humanism.
    Also it reminds me of a song by John Cougar Mellancamp on his Scarcrow album guy’s. ” You gotta stand for something, or you will fall for anything”. Check it out. Still true.

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