20th Century, History, Minnesota, Science, Uncategorized

William Bell Riley: Minnesota’s Link to the Scopes Monkey Trials

riley_at_desk

July 21, 1925
William Bell Riley was the pastor of First Baptist Church of Minneapolis, Minnesota from 1897 until 1942. Riley was a theological conservative and advocate for the New Hampshire Confession of Faith of 1833. In 1919, he founded the World Christian Fundamentals Association as resource for the Church in an era of modernism. In 1947, Riley persuaded Billy Graham to become president of his university and seminary; the Northwestern Bible College (University of Northwestern-Saint Paul).*

According to William Vance Trollinger Jr., author of God’s Empire: Wiliam Bell Riley and Midwestern Fundamentalism. (1990, The University of Wisconsin Press.), Riley was “…the dominant figure in American fundamentalism in the first half of the twentieth century. More than any other individual, it was Riley who, in the decade after World War I, marshaled the fundamentalist forces into crusades designed to purify both American Protestantism and American culture in general”. “Riley was the founder and leading spokesperson of the World’s Christian Fundamentals Association (WCFA), the first organization that attempted to unite conservative Christians of all denominations in an international association. An indefatigable polemicist, he was one of the most active and effective debaters among American antievolutionists”.***

Given this stance, it is no surprise that he was aware of a small trial developing in Tennessee that would become a touchstone of controversy in American culture; the evolution of man vs. the creation of man. Riley responded by tapping, perhaps, the greatest orator of the 20th century to defend the Church; William Jennings Bryan. It also bode well for the Fundamentalists that Jennings was a man of influence: lawyer and three-time Democratic presidential nominee, former United States Secretary of State, lifelong Presbyterian, and a man of the people.

The State of Tennessee v. John Thomas Scopes and commonly referred to as the Scopes Monkey Trial, was a famous American legal case in 1925 in which a high school teacher John Scopes was accused of violating Tennessee’s Butler Act which made it unlawful to teach human evolution in any state-funded school. Scopes was found guilty and fined $100, but the verdict was overturned on a technicality. It became a national show trial highlighting the Fundamentalist-Modernist Controversy. Famed orator and politician William Jennings Bryan argued the Fundamentalist position that the Word of G-d revealed in the Bible took priority over all human knowledge. Clarence Darrow, a powerful defense attorney and labor lawyer, argued the Modernist position that evolution was not inconsistent with religion. It became a theological contest between the two camps as to which should be taught in public schools.**

In Your mercy, Lord hear our prayer. We, the State of Minnesota, being comprised both of people of faith and those who believe in the supremacy of science have judged You. Our greatest offenses to You, perhaps, are judging Your ability to create, that You are not the author of all science and natural laws of the universe, and indirectly, by attempting to usurp Your benevolent moral authority as the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the ending of all. We, who live in the dusty bookshelf of our observations within linear history, do not comprehend the Ancient of Days, the Eternal Now, the I Am. Great One, will You forgive us; back then in 1925, now, and into the future?

Will You have mercy on the beliefs and misbeliefs of William Bell Riley, the WFCA, and the Fundamentalist movement of this era? Their root fears, in this case, likely would be that teaching evolution alongside creationism would cast doubts on the truthfulness and historicity of Your Word. To amplify further, public schools may eventually abandon teaching the Bible at all, based on the premise that it’s “unscientific” where it addresses science, and that it’s values are static rather than evolutionary. Though one needs to understand it to thoroughly grasp the greatest writings of Western civilization, it could also be deemed untenable as literature.

Granted, their fears have come true in less than 90 years. We do not currently rely on the Bible for any use in public education in Minnesota. Yet, where they closed their ears to Your voice spoken through science and evolution, will You have mercy? Will You forgive where fundamentalists’ fears may have blocked the growth of students eager to study a species’ curious abilities of adaption?

Similarly, will You have mercy on the beliefs and misbeliefs of the modernists and evolutionists of this era? They likely feared that their students would subject their minds to the shaky traditions and teaching of Your Word without the ability to “scientifically” test them to be credible. Were their suppositions of the infallibility of the scientific method and reproducible experiments even the correct means to assess any book, let alone Your Revealed Word written over a span of 2,000 years by forty different authors from three different continents? What are the correct means of testing the reliability of writing?*****

First, does a book of antiquity pass the basic principals of historiography: the bibliographical test, the internal evidence test, and the external evidence test? What type of manuscript evidence exists? How many extant copies of the book do we possess, and how close are these copies to the date of publishing? These are useful questions our educators have failed to ask of Your Word. Have mercy on our lack of curiosity!*****

Next, does archaeology support or refute the claims of the Bible? Below, two giants in the field give their testimony on the subject.
Nelson Glueck, the renowned Jewish archaeologist said, “It may be stated categorically that no archaeological discovery has ever controverted a biblical reference.” Rivers in the Desert; History of Negev. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society of America, 1969, p33.

“There can be no doubt that archaeology has confirmed the substantial historicity of Old Testament tradition.” William F. Albright Archaeology and the Religions of Israel. Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press, 1956, p1.

Again, were the Messianic prophecies of the Old Testament fulfilled in Christ? Below is a brief list of Old Testament prophecies and their New Testament fulfillment:
Born of a seed of woman – Galatians 4:4
Born of a virgin – Matthew 1:18
Son of G-d – Matthew 3:17
Seed of Abraham – Galatians 3:16
Son of Isaac – Luke 3:23
Son of Jacob – Luke 3:23,34
Tribe of Judah – Hebrews 7:14
Family line of Jesse – Luke 3:23,32
House of David – Revelation 22:16
Born at Bethlehem – Matthew 2:1
Presented with gifts – Matthew 2:11
Herod kills children – Mathew 2:16
His pre-existence – Colossians 1:17
He shall be called ‘Lord’ – Luke 2:11
Shall be Immanuel – Matthew 1:23
Shall be a prophet – Matthew 21:11
Priest – Hebrews 3:11
Judge – John 5:30
King – Matthew 27:37
Special anointment of Holy Spirit – Matthew 3:16,17
His zeal for G-d – John 2:15-17
Preceded by a messenger – Matthew 3:1,2
Ministry to begin in Galilee – Mathew 4:12,13,17
Ministry of Miracles – Mathew 9:35
Teacher of parables – Matthew 13:34
He was to enter the Temple – Matthew 21:12
He was to enter Jerusalem on a donkey – Luke 19:35-37
“Stone of stumbling” to Jews – I Peter 2:7
Light to Gentiles – Acts 13:47-48
Resurrection – Acts 2:31
Ascension – Acts 1:9
Seated at the right hand of G-d – Hebrews 3:1
Betrayed by a friend – Matthew 10:4
Sold for 30 pieces of silver – Matthew 26:15
Money to be thrown in Temple – Matthew 27:5
Price given for potter’s field – Matthew 27:7
Forsaken by disciples – Mark 14:50
Accused by false witnesses – Matthew 26:59,60
Dumb (silent) before accusers – Matthew 27:12
Wounded and bruised – Matthew 27:26
Smitten and spit upon – Matthew 26:67
Mocked – Matthew 27:31
Fell under the Cross – John 19:17
Hand and feet pierced – Luke 23:33
Crucified with thieves – Matthew 27:38
Made intercession for his persecutors – Luke 23:34
Rejected by his own people – John 7:5,48
Hated without cause – John 15:25
Friends stood afar off – Luke 23:49
People shook their heads – Matthew 27:39
Stared upon – Luke 23:35
Garments parted and lots cast – John 19:23,24
To suffer thirst – John 19:28
Gall and vinegar offered him – Matthew 27:34
His forsaken cry – Matthew 27:46
Committed himself to G-d – Luke 23:46
Bones not broken – John 19:33
Heartbroken – John 19:34
His side pierced – John 19:34
Darkness over the land – Matthew 27:45
Buried in a rich man’s tomb – Matthew 27:57-60

Professor Peter Stoner used these claims as an exercise in probability. If we used only eight items in this list, …”We find that the chance that any man might have lived down to the present time and fulfilled all eight prophecies is 1 in 10 to the 17th power.” If we increased that number to forty eight prophecies, …”We find the chance that any one man fulfilled all 48 prophecies to be 1 in 10 to the 157th power.” *****

All this to say that using the suppositions of Charles Darwin and Alfred Wallace, and or any other scientific method is an incomplete assessment of the truthfulness of the Bible, or the proper yardstick to judge any book. Your revelations in scripture are scientific where it applies to science, but how would Darwin’s method be meaningful across all time, beyond time, and to all subjects?
Human beings are not present to all time, therefore, is it possible that modernism falls apart due to lack of presence to observe, test, and record the conditions of reproducible experiments and their results? Will You forgive these judgments based on our infinitesimal comprehension of time, or the concept that time is a creature under Your control?

Ultimately, modernism has taught us that we are a chance, therefore, not subject to the moral laws of any deity. If we are the beginning, then we are the end. If all morals are subject to the forces of evolution, then all values are the determination of each human being. There are no distinctions between lightness and darkness, cruelty and love; there is only survival of the fittest. The ends justify the means.

Mercifully, You are the Alpha and the Omega. You are not offended by our quest to understand the universe. We know love because You have demonstrated love through Christ’s life, death, and resurrection. We know hate because we have experienced the absence of Your presence. We have worth built on the stability that we are declared worthy by the King of the Universe. That worth will go on after modernism, fundamentalism, or any ‘ism’ is no more.

Lord, we thank You that our society wrestled with the question of origins in the Scopes Monkey trial. In spite of its upheaval in the world of education, we have still remained a people. Will You give us the grace to continue to wrestle with our existential questions in the future? Will You bring Your Presence to all students in Minnesota?

1Then the Lord spoke to Job out of the storm. He said:
2“Who is this that obscures my plans
with words without knowledge?
3Brace yourself like a man;
I will question you,
and you shall answer me.
4“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?
Tell me, if you understand.
5Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know!
Who stretched a measuring line across it?
6On what were its footings set,
or who laid its cornerstone—
7while the morning stars sang together
and all the angels shouted for joy? Job 38:1-7 NIV****

*https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Bell_Riley
**https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scopes_Trial
***http://faithful-nation.com/2017/07/14/william-bell-riley-and-fundamentalist-anti-semitism/
****http://biblehub.com/niv/job/38.htm
*****McDowell, Josh. Evidence that Demands a Verdict.Nashville, Atlanta, London, Vancouver: Thomas Nelson, 1979.

 

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20th Century, Culture, History, Minnesota, Native Americans, Uncategorized

Society of American Indians Conference

Unknown

Oct 2, 1919 to Oct 4, 1919
The eighth convention of the Society of American Indians is held in Minneapolis.

“It is not right that the Indian, who fought for his country in France, go back to his tribe without the right to vote.” —Dr. Charles A. Eastman, a Dakota Indian born near Redwood Falls who becomes president of the Society of American Indians and a professor at Amherst College.*

At first glance, this issue seems like a slam dunk; American citizens have the right to vote, Indians of this era were American citizens, therefore this is a breech of their Constitutionally secured rights. It breaks faith with both the spirit and the letter of our law. Perhaps Eastman’s statement errs, however, in the assumption that most Indians were citizens?

Through the efforts of individuals and organizations like his, the Dakota would eventually be recognized as citizens by the Indian Freedom Citizenship Suffrage Act of 1924, also known as the Snyder Act. Unfortunately, before 1924, only about 8% of Indians were U.S. citizens, therefore, it is somewhat logical that they did not vote in a nation they did not wish to be part of. ** Many considered the tribe of origin to be their sovereign nation within U.S. borders before the Snyder Act, and many tribes are defined as “First Nations” for the same reason today.

To add a spiritual dimension, we can explore a relationship between civil rights and worship dysfunctions. Both concepts speak to the inherent, unalienable value of a subject. Civil rights are directed to protect the intrinsic, non-negotiable worth conferred by G-d upon each human being. Worship, perhaps, could be defined as human recognition and practice of the intrinsic, non-negotiable worth of G-d. When and where we are dysfunctional in our worship of G-d, we open ourselves to be dysfunctional in respecting the worthiness and honor of our human neighbors.

Prior to his time organizing for SAI, he organized for the YMCA in western states and Canada among Indians. Below is quote of some observations that informed his faith.

“During that time, as an avowed Christian, Eastman nevertheless seemed to maintain a reflective stance toward that religion because of his early traditional Dakota upbringing. He studied what he called “the Protestant missionary effort among Indians” and “almost unconsciously reopened the book of my early religious training.” He wondered how it was “that our simple lives [before Christianity] were so imbued with the spirit of worship, while much churchgoing among white and Christian Indians led often to such very small results.” *** ***https://indiancountrymedianetwork.com/news/opinions/dr-charles-eastman-a-dakotas-conflicted-take-on-christianity/

Lord hear our prayer for Minnesotan’s of 1919. We are guilty of a worship dysfunction in this era. We have attempted to assume the rights of citizenship in Your kingdom without humility. Our legal status is based on the unmerited favor and rights bestowed on us by the blood of the risen Messiah! How can we receive unmerited legal access to the King of the Universe, and then deny legal rights to those we see everyday?

Likewise, our worship dysfunctions manifested in our failure to recognize Your image and worthiness and inherent legal rights of our Dakota, Lakota, and Nakota neighbors. Will You have mercy on our lack of mercy for these neighbors? Will You have mercy on our worship dysfunctions that usurp Your position as Author of All Human rights!?

Will You raise our awareness of the perfection of Your authority? May we be humble and learn from our elders about our relationships and laws; human to human. May we receive our justice as a gift from the One so that we can pass it to the many until You reign forever! Amen.

 

* P.T.H. cites timeline formerly at this URL: mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm
The Minnesota Historical Society Web site, http://www.mnhs.org, is fantastic! Check it out! Images are from https://images.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl; again, an amazing resource!
** https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_Citizenship_Act
***https://indiancountrymedianetwork.com/news/opinions/dr-charles-eastman-a-dakotas-conflicted-take-on-christianity/
A nice summary of the life of Dr. Charles Eastman. (aka Hakadah and Ohiyesa) http://aktalakota.stjo.org/site/News2?page=NewsArticle&id=8884

 

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20th Century, History, Intercession, Minnesota, State Government, war

Charles Lindbergh Sr. Against War

Unknown

1916-1918
Congressman Charles A. Lindbergh Sr., father of the famed aviator, argues that America should stay out of a war from which only the arms merchants will profit. The isolationist Lindbergh is jailed, shot at, and hanged in effigy during his losing campaign for governor.*

Lord, You have said, “the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. I Timothy 6:10*** Will You help us search our heart motives in this era, and give us sound judgment? Will You let us ponder, without fear, the heartfelt warnings of Minnesota Congressman Charles Lindbergh Sr. today as to our participation in the Great War?

“Below is Lindbergh’s powerful Congressional speech from his 1917 book ‘Why is Your Country at War’?, page 156, that alleges the Money Trust created the privately-owned Federal Reserve banking system to maximize their own profits. This speech is as strong and accurate a message that can be communicated. It is fully worth your investment of under 5 minutes’ attention.
“…I shall now quote the main important parts of my speech of July 5, 1916—in the Congressional Record of that date:
“No matter what individual professions and party claims may be to the contrary, it is apparent to anyone who has been a Member of Congress, and to anyone else who examines, that the will of the people in regard to legislation is seldom consulted. The price of leadership here is exactly the opposite of carrying out, in good faith, the will of those we are elected to serve.
Wholesale deception of the voters has been, and is now, the means used most successfully to secure office and remain in public life.
…Every one here knows that these things are true. But the public gets no information from the press about it, but anyone who dares to uncover the system and expose the schemes for deceiving the public finds that a certain part of the press will attack him and call him a radical and obstructionist, and excoriate him in every way possible. If to tell the truth about things makes one a radical, then radicals ought to be at a premium. But they have not been so far politically.
…There is a sinister influence at work in our country, which, if it is not checked, intends to completely undermine the original purpose of the formation of our Government—change it from the purposes of a democracy, and instead make it of a monarchical and plutocratic system, and to bring all the world into one control and one system, which for purposes of deception of the plain people, they would call a “world’s democracy,” but which in fact it is their plan to make the rule of the wealth grabbers, maintained by simple organization of themselves and disorganization of the masses pitting the masses against each other. It would be the privilege of a few to rule in splendor, and the fate of the many to spend their lives in unrequited toil and that hopeless condition of servitude which millions came here to escape from. The few now desire to cut off every possible avenue of escape from industrial slavery for the masses.
…The plain truth is that neither of these great parties, as at present led and manipulated by an ‘invisible government’ is fit to manage the destinies of a great people. Their rules of regulation must be changed before they will be, and it is doubtful if their rules will be materially changed. If they shall be, it will be because the voters themselves force it.
…Early in my service here I observed that there was some power outside the Government itself which was insidiously, but none the less effectively dictating the course of legislation in reference to finance, currency and the creation and control of credit throughout the country; that it was in a position to dictate and did dictate to an extent almost unlimited, to whom credit should be extended and from whom it should be withheld, and that it largely controlled the political action and influence of most of the banking and other corporations of the country. I saw that such a power of control existed here in Congress.
I introduced a resolution setting forth the facts, naming this insidious and well nigh invincible power, the Money Trust, source of all the trusts and calling for an investigation of its activities. The “big business” press, ridiculed the resolution and especially the idea that the Money Trust had an existence. (The facts about this appears elsewhere in this volume. See Index: Money Trust.) In this case the Committee reported out my resolution under a different name, and in order to prevent me from serving on the committee to be appointed, the resolution was referred to the Banking and Currency Committee which was composed almost entirely of bankers and lawyers for some of the banks. By keeping me off the committee I could not cross examine the witnesses.
The committee, nevertheless, had to report that there was a Money Trust and that its activities were as I had stated, and that its existence and the power it yielded were a menace to the institutions of the country, but took no action to deprive it of its power.
Woodrow Wilson, however, took notice of the proceedings and of the existence of the Money Trust.
This was before he became president. He promised to exercise his influence if elected, to curb its power and influence. But I have no hesitation in saying that this promise has not been kept, but on the contrary the principal result of financial legislation during this administration has been to legalize and more firmly entrench the Money Trust in its control of business, credit and politics of this vast country than ever before, and in order to conceal that fact the Money Trust has bought the services of many prominent financial writers for the purpose of running articles in the press praising the Federal Reserve system which in less than six years the people will rise in rebellion against because of its intolerable and unjust burden (Editor’s note: Lindbergh was off by seven years. It took 13 years from this speech for the Money Trust to simultaneously call-in loans in October 1929, crash the Stock Market, and begin the Great Depression).
Profiting from my observation of the Money Trust inquiry by a committee nearly all the members of which were interested in limiting its activities as much as possible, I introduced a resolution declaring it should be the policy of the House Membership that no banker or any one who was financially interested in a bank should be a member of the banking and currency committee.
I also introduced a resolution calling on Members to declare the extent of their affiliations with banks, if they had any.
Neither of these resolutions came out of the Committee on Rules to which they were referred, so we must take it for granted that a majority of the Rules Committee believe that it is right for bankers to frame legislation for Congress to pass for the bankers personal benefit, as all financial legislation shows has been done. Personally I do not believe that a banker should be on that Committee, any more than that if some one sued a judge that he, the sued judge, should sit as the presiding judge to decide his own lawsuit.
My Democratic friends, you have the vain hope that special privilege, having obtained enormous benefits at your hands, is going to be grateful for the past favors that you have showered upon it and assist you in retaining control of the Government. They will furnish you campaign funds, as they do to both the dominant parties, but it makes little difference to them which of you have the power as long as it remains with either under present conditions. You are to learn, having done all you could for it, that you are no longer necessary to its business, except that now that you have passed the most important laws that it wanted, you are forced to follow it up, and are stopped from complaining through your portion of the press and on the stump or from entering any protest whatever when the time comes that your eyes will be open to the oppression the plain people are surely destined to suffer because of your falsely so-called ‘beneficial legislation.’
You have missed the opportunity of your lifetime; one not likely to ever come to you again. The time will come when no Democrat who boasts of the achievements of this administration will be considered worthy to hold any public office. You have gone “cross-roads” with some of the most vital principles laid down by the great Thomas Jefferson. You may boast of him as a great Democrat, but none of you who have been active in fastening some of the hardships of this administration upon the people can boast of yourselves.” “

Eternal Father, as surely as You live forever, there is not a single monolithic motive for why any peoples of any era or time commit themselves to go to war. We yield and bend to its call as the voices of our leaders are translated by our inward being. Most of us obey a call to arms, but we fight for different reasons. Do we fight because someone has touched our security? Do we fight because of a real or imagined great moral cause? Do we fight for our material, land, or economic assets and interests? Do we fight because we treasure loyalty?

In any case, we take note of Lindbergh’s assertions that we were being led to the Great War primarily for the benefit of those selling loans, war materiel, and a political class that benefitted from globalization. We observe that both Democrats and Republicans were pitted against each other by the Money Trust to create laws beneficial to their purposes. In general, Lindbergh warns of the power of leadership within leadership; of an “invisible government” that has the potential to usurp representative democracy.

In response to this speech, let us remember the eternal call of Your word. You have given us the right and responsibility to defend ourselves, yet not commit murder. “Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind.” Genesis 9:6 NIV***
An attack on an individual is an attack on the image of G-d, therefore, not to be taken rashly! Further directions are clearly stated in Your Ten Commandments; “You shall not murder.” Exodus 20:13 NIV***

How then, do these individual principles translate into terms of tribes, city-states, or nation states regarding war? In his post “Every Battle in the Bible”, author Mike Southon cites approximately 90 battles in the Old Testament, as well as listing enemies of the Patriarchs and Israel, outcome, and acts of Divine Intervention. While very comprehensive, even a brief perusal makes clear that G-d ordained or directed wars were also limited by His precepts of justice and mercy. The victories listed were within the framework of His plan and purpose. Those remembered as defeats were initiated and conducted without His consultation. In reflection, Southon posits “I argue that the Old Testament history shows that war was part of God’s gift of the land to Israel.”****

So we begin to intercede, under Your authority, for this moment of time! We remember first that price is paid for all human separation through the risen Messiah; Jesus Christ! Through Him, all sin, throughout all time, can be lifted up, out, and onto the Cross of Christ.

We give thanks for the life of Congressman Charles Lindbergh Senior, and his wariness of our entrance to the Great War. Will You forgive all the judgments made against him whether by constituent, his elected peers, or the unelected “Money Trust”? Will You lift this weight from him, his ancestry, and his figurative children who question our State and Nation where it has rushed to war?

Will You forgive Lindbergh his judgments of his constituents’ dissent to his positions? Will You forgive the Congressman for the judgments of his peers, their words, their parties, and motives? Will You forgive his false assessments of his enemies within the “Money Trust”: manufacturers, Wall Street, and the Federal Reserve?

This Great War, as all our warfare, gives testimony to the failure of our relationships: nation to nation, city to city, tribe to tribe, family to family, and individually as human to human! We have offended Your image in the Great War through the destruction of our enemies. We have amplified our offenses in this war where we failed to consult You. We have failed the spirit of self-defense with acts motivated by the spirit of conquest. We have failed our countrymen, their property and lands, where Your laws of grace and truth, justice and mercy, good and evil were broken in World War I.

Will You have mercy on both our intentional, and unintentional blindness Father? At times, we are no better than Adam and Eve, who were enticed by the promise of being “like G-d” by the Serpent. Where we were enticed into WWI by the Money Trust, will you forgive us those specific acts of conquest? Will You forgive us for following those seeking G-d like power in a post-war Europe? Will you change our will-to-power?

It is possible that we are no different than Cain and Abel; an unrighteous brother murdering his innocent brother. While defensive warfare is not murder, there are real atrocities, abominations, and warcrimes. Your sons have killed Your sons! It’s unthinkable to imagine the pain that Cain caused his parents. Yet, when we scale it up to the size of the Great War, we cannot fathom the pain caused to our Eternal Father!

Will You bless us to retain Your goodness when we oppose and defeat evil in our time, and into the future? Will You make us exhaustive in our diplomacy towards peace, yet resolute in commitment to not appease evil? Will You expose the real Enemy of mankind within war propaganda and the unearned wealth of conquest? As your children, We ask You to uproot the Money Trust: in this era, at present, and until You come! We know that You are All-Knowing and Faithful and True to bring justice to those who specifically and intentionally have sown the seeds of the Great War, while blessing those whose talents were used in good faith. We declare over Minnesota; “In G-d we trust!”

*P.T.H. cites timeline formerly at this URL: mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm
The Minnesota Historical Society Web site, http://www.mnhs.org, is fantastic! Check it out! Images are from https://images.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl; again, an amazing resource!
**Primary source cited in the following blog http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2012/03/charles-lindbergh-sr-86-of-great-depression-economists-on-monetary-reform.html
***http://biblehub.com
****Author Mike Southon makes a compelling case for Christian pacifism in his blog “Constantly Reforming”. Cited here is his study from Every Battle in the Bible https://constantlyreforming.wordpress.com/every-battle-in-the-bible/

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History, Intercession, Jesus, Minnesota, Uncategorized

What is PTH? Why pray about the past?

I freely confess that the following outline is a work in progress. I simply want to share the framework and rationale of why praying through history is pertinent to me. Everyone who names the name of Jesus is called to be a minister of reconciliation, and this is just one man’s attempt to practice.

I. There are specific “moments of separation” in human history. Our perceptions lead to thoughts that overlook or take offense. I will call these “thought-judgments”.

For example, the Seljuk Turks attack and overcome the city of Jerusalem.

II. Action-based judgments at the moment of the offense.

  • Jews to Seljuks, Jews to all Turks, Jews of Jerusalem towards any outsider.
  • Seljuks to Jerusalem’s Jews, Seljuks to all Jews, Seljuk’s towards all enemies.

III. Future judgments are formed based on memory and perception; bitter root judgments are formed.

  • Transference on a cultural scale.
  • Perpetuation of a past offense.
  • Walking backward into our future.

IV. Parties are held responsible for their actions and judgments in the Lord’s justice.

  • Even righteous anger betrays the victim. Perhaps even more so if the victim is a city, culture, tribe, or nation. Under the dominion of the Lord Jesus Christ, all have been forgiven all, and therefore must seek and practice to forgive all to remain true to His example. (This is not easy, but perhaps impossible apart from His mercy. The decision of the will may be simple, but the maintaining a heart of forgiveness is divine. )
  • This is not an endorsement of living without boundaries, especially personal boundaries. This is not an endorsement to submit to an abuser. Rather, it is a challenge of the rights of a human being to hold another prisoner by the maintenance of an offense.

V. We can representationally acknowledge historical sin before our Lord.

  • Through Christ we have access to his Omniscience, Omnipotence, and Omnipresence. He is present to all history, the present, and future events. He is within time, and beyond our comprehension of time. He knows all and can guide us to pray representationally, (intercession) for events of history, the present, and the future. He truly has unlimited power to forgive, heal, restore any human condition!
  • His only limitation is self-imposed: He is a gentleman with boundaries. He believes in good and evil, justice and injustice, lightness and darkness, separateness and relationship. Isaiah 5:20 “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.” We can trust in distinctions because he trusts in distinctions. Denial of sin within the context of our relationship with Him or others offends God because it denies our condition of separateness, or that we may have a need to address. Denial allows us to keep our pride, hold a grudge, or maintain anger. To use an old Baptist analogy, “The whole world stands under the Niagara Falls of the Lord’s love. Some have their cups turned up and are filled. Others, though under a deluge of love, can’t seem to keep a drop because their cups are turned upside down.”

VI. Through acknowledgement of historical sins, we set the process of restoration in motion. It is a first step in a process, but is important because it removes the legal grounds of the accusations of the Enemy.

  • We become aware of sin. Often by conscience, or reading or hearing of history.
  • We confess it to the Lord. This is a legal admission of guilt.
  • We pronounce the Lord’s forgiveness of confessed sin. (1 John 1: 8-10)
  • He will guide it through the full process of restoration.

    1. Confession leads to remorse.

    2. Remorse leads to repentance.

    3. Repentance leads to reconciliation.

    4. Reconciliation leads to restoration.

  • We cannot change past events, but replace a heritage cursed relationships with a ray of blessed ones; a change beginning at a fixed point in time, but continuing into eternity.

VII. Additional scriptural principles or mandates that outline our authority under Christ to pray through history.

1. Author Derek Prince sheds light on several key passages of scripture:

  • “It is never the will of God that the judgment due the wicked should come upon the righteous.” Genesis 18: 23,25 NIV
  • “Will you sweep away the righteous with the wicked?” v. 23 Abraham asks.
  • ”Far be it from you to do such a thing — to kill the righteous with the wicked, treating the righteous and the wicked alike. Far be it from you! Will not the Judge of all the earth do right?” v. 25
  • On Christians’ dual citizenship: “By natural birth [the apostle Paul, like any Christian] is a citizen of an earthly nation, and he is subject to all the ordinances and requirements of his nation’s lawful government. But by spiritual rebirth through faith in Christ, he is also a citizen of God’s heavenly kingdom. This is the basis of Paul’s statement, … “We…are citizens of heaven.” Philippians 3:20 NEB
  • Another example, Jeremiah 1: 5,10 NIV – ”I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” v.5
  • ”See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant.” v.10
  • Jeremiah was subject as a citizen of Judah: he did not “preach or practice political subversion or anarchy. Nor did he ever seek to evade or resist decrees made by the government concerning him, even though these were at times arbitrary and unjust. Yet on the spiritual plane to which God elevated him through his prophetic ministry, Jeremiah exercised authority over the very rulers to whom he was in subjection on the natural plane.”

    – Derek Prince, Shaping History Through Prayer and Fasting, (Springdale, PA: Whittaker House,1973)  [Bolded emphasis mine.]

2. Theologian Timothy Tennent speaks to Christians’ God-given ability to express forgiveness from God.

  • Mark 2:1-12 NIV v 5. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “ Son, your sins are forgiven.” v 10.
  • “But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins…”He said to the paralytic, v11.
  • “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” “It is interesting to note that in John 20:22-23, Jesus breathes upon his disciples to receive the Holy Spirit, and then pronounces, “If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”  Jesus is giving the church the authority to announce His forgiveness in the lives of those who come to Him in faith.
  • We do not have the innate ability to forgive anyone’s sins against God, or to withhold God’s forgiveness of sins from anybody.  But Jesus has given the Church the authority to act as His regents or representatives in the world, and to speak on His behalf.  We can declare that “God forgives you” with all the authority of Jesus, because we are not declaring our forgiveness, but rather His forgiveness in Christ.  We are merely pronouncing the forgiveness made possible by the sacrifice of Christ.”-Timothy Tennent, President, Asbury Theological Seminary http://blogs.asburyseminary.edu/global-talk/the-temple-is-here-mark-21-12/ [Bolded emphasis mine]

3.  His Holiness John Paul II, First Sunday of Lent “Day of Pardon” Presentation Vatican Basilica, 12 March 2000:

  • The meaning of the celebration of Lent: “…Christians are invited to acknowledge, before God and before those offended by their actions, the faults which they have committed. Let them do so without seeking anything in return, but strengthened only by the ‘love of God which has been poured finto our hearts’ (Rom 5:5)” (Incarnationis Mysterium, 11; cf. Terno Millennio Adveniente, 33).
  • …The Lord has been living and present in his Church, and through the Saints he has demonstrated that he continues to be at work in human history, in the midst of his community. Certainly, Christians, as pilgrims and wayfarers towards the Kingdom, remain sinners, frail, weak and subject to the temptations of Satan, the Prince of this world, despite their incorporation into the Body of Christ. In every generation the holiness of the Church has shone forth, witnessed by countless numbers of her sons and daughters; yet this holiness has been contradicted by the continuing presence of sin which burdens the journey of God’s People. The Church can sing both the Magnificat for what God has accomplished within her and the Miserere for the sins of Christians, for which she stands in need of purification, penance and renewal (cf. Lumen Gentium, 8).
  • “The Church cannot cross the threshold of the new millennium without encouraging her children to purify themselves through repentance of past errors and instances of infidelity, inconsistency and slowness to act” (Tertio Millennio Adveniente, 33). Consequently, a liturgy seeking pardon from God for the sins committed by Christians down the centuries is not only legitimate; it is also the most fitting means of expressing repentance and gaining purification.  Pope John Paul II, in a primatial act, confesses the sins of Christians over the centuries down to our own time, conscious that the Church is a unique subject in history, “a single mystical person”. The Church is a communion of saints, but a solidarity in sin also exists among all the members of the People of God: the bearers of the Petrine ministry, Bishops, priests, religious and lay faithful.– Source: http://www.catholiclinks.org/sacramentoperdondiadelperdon.htm  [Bolded emphasis mine.]

In Closing

Not all, but many, stories of the past are characterized by an antagonist/ protagonist relationship. I want to get beyond that broken record! I want to remember that I am just like them both; a human being with a heart filled with mixed motives! Perhaps one day we will learn to let the other guy off the hook, and create a just and merciful analytical model for history that will foster future generations in their struggles to ‘love their enemies, and do good to those who persecute them.’ May we, by the authority of the King of the Universe, practice to: heal the past, free the present, and bless the future. Amen!

James D. Orvis

 

 

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19th Century, Culture, History, Intercession, Jesus, Minnesota, Native Americans, Treaties

Lower and Upper Sioux Agencies 1853  

Unknown-3

Unknown-2

The government builds the Lower and Upper Sioux Agencies as it moves the Dakota onto the reservations created in the treaties of 1851.*

Jesus, You are our agency. We use mechanisms to get back our share from the same government that has taken from us. Have mercy!

Will You forgive the offense of the U.S. government, Minnesota Territory, their representatives and interests against the land of the Upper Sioux; the Pejuhutazizi Kapi? Will You forgive the offenses of these same representatives against any member of this Oyate whether Sisseton or Wahpeton? Will You, Fair Judge, create restoration and bring resolution to this conflict beginning in 1853?

Will You forgive the offense of the the U.S. government, Minnesota Territory, their representatives and interests against the land of the Lower Sioux: the Cansa’yapi (where they marked the trees red)? Will You forgive the offenses of these same representatives against any member of this Oyate whether Mdewakanton or Wahpekute? Will You, Fair Judge, create restoration and bring resolution to this conflict beginning in 1853?

You are the One who blessed and planted these indigenous nations here so long ago. We remember these offenses to the Dakota Oyate as offenses to You! Will You lift them up from the land, out of our hearts, and onto the cross of Christ? We cannot heal the sky above, or all that is below the original boundaries of the Dakota, but You can!
Will You bless our common future?

More information on the Upper Sioux http://mn.gov/indianaffairs/tribes_uppersioux.html

More information on the Lower Sioux Agency http://mn.gov/indianaffairs/tribes_lowersioux.html

*Note – PrayThroughHistory uses the timeline located for several years at the Minnesota Historical Society Web site, at this URL: mnhs.org/about/dipity_timeline.htm .

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History, Intercession, Jesus, Minnesota, Uncategorized

What is PTH? Why pray about the past?

I freely confess that the following outline is a work in progress. I simply want to share the framework and rationale of why praying through history is pertinent to me. Everyone who names the name of Jesus is called to be a minister of reconciliation, and this is just one man’s attempt to practice.

I. There are specific “moments of separation” in human history. Our perceptions lead to thoughts that overlook or take offense. I will call these “thought-judgments”.

For example, the Seljuk Turks attack and overcome the city of Jerusalem.

II. Action-based judgments at the moment of the offense.

  • Jews to Seljuks, Jews to all Turks, Jews of Jerusalem towards any outsider.
  • Seljuks to Jerusalem’s Jews, Seljuks to all Jews, Seljuk’s towards all enemies.

III. Future judgments are formed based on memory and perception; bitter root judgments are formed.

  • Transference on a cultural scale.
  • Perpetuation of a past offense.
  • Walking backward into our future.

IV. Parties are held responsible for their actions and judgments in the Lord’s justice.

  • Even righteous anger betrays the victim. Perhaps even more so if the victim is a city, culture, tribe, or nation. Under the dominion of the Lord Jesus Christ, all have been forgiven all, and therefore must seek and practice to forgive all to remain true to His example. (This is not easy, but perhaps impossible apart from His mercy. The decision of the will may be simple, but the maintaining a heart of forgiveness is divine. )
  • This is not an endorsement of living without boundaries, especially personal boundaries. This is not an endorsement to submit to an abuser. Rather, it is a challenge of the rights of a human being to hold another prisoner by the maintenance of an offense.

V. We can representationally acknowledge historical sin before our Lord.

  • Through Christ we have access to his Omniscience, Omnipotence, and Omnipresence. He is present to all history, the present, and future events. He is within time, and beyond our comprehension of time. He knows all and can guide us to pray representationally, (intercession) for events of history, the present, and the future. He truly has unlimited power to forgive, heal, restore any human condition!
  • His only limitation is self-imposed: He is a gentleman with boundaries. He believes in good and evil, justice and injustice, lightness and darkness, separateness and relationship. Isaiah 5:20 “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.” We can trust in distinctions because he trusts in distinctions. Denial of sin within the context of our relationship with Him or others offends God because it denies our condition of separateness, or that we may have a need to address. Denial allows us to keep our pride, hold a grudge, or maintain anger. To use an old Baptist analogy, “The whole world stands under the Niagara Falls of the Lord’s love. Some have their cups turned up and are filled. Others, though under a deluge of love, can’t seem to keep a drop because their cups are turned upside down.”

VI. Through acknowledgement of historical sins, we set the process of restoration in motion. It is a first step in a process, but is important because it removes the legal grounds of the accusations of the Enemy.

  • We become aware of sin. Often by conscience, or reading or hearing of history.
  • We confess it to the Lord. This is a legal admission of guilt.
  • We pronounce the Lord’s forgiveness of confessed sin. (1 John 1: 8-10)
  • He will guide it through the full process of restoration.
    1. Confession leads to remorse.
    2. Remorse leads to repentance.
    3. Repentance leads to reconciliation.
    4. Reconciliation leads to restoration.
  • We cannot change past events, but replace a heritage cursed relationships with a ray of blessed ones; a change beginning at a fixed point in time, but continuing into eternity.

VII. Additional scriptural principles or mandates that outline our authority under Christ to pray through history.

1. Author Derek Prince sheds light on several key passages of scripture:

  • “It is never the will of God that the judgment due the wicked should come upon the righteous.” Genesis 18: 23,25 NIV
  • “Will you sweep away the righteous with the wicked?” v. 23 Abraham asks.
  • ”Far be it from you to do such a thing — to kill the righteous with the wicked, treating the righteous and the wicked alike. Far be it from you! Will not the Judge of all the earth do right?” v. 25
  • On Christians’ dual citizenship: “By natural birth [the apostle Paul, like any Christian] is a citizen of an earthly nation, and he is subject to all the ordinances and requirements of his nation’s lawful government. But by spiritual rebirth through faith in Christ, he is also a citizen of God’s heavenly kingdom. This is the basis of Paul’s statement, … “We…are citizens of heaven.” Philippians 3:20 NEB
  • Another example, Jeremiah 1: 5,10 NIV – ”I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” v.5
  • ”See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant.” v.10
  • Jeremiah was subject as a citizen of Judah: he did not “preach or practice political subversion or anarchy. Nor did he ever seek to evade or resist decrees made by the government concerning him, even though these were at times arbitrary and unjust. Yet on the spiritual plane to which God elevated him through his prophetic ministry, Jeremiah exercised authority over the very rulers to whom he was in subjection on the natural plane.”
    – Derek Prince, Shaping History Through Prayer and Fasting,
     (Springdale, PA: Whittaker House,1973)  [Bolded emphasis mine.]

2. Theologian Timothy Tennent speaks to Christians’ God-given ability to express forgiveness from God.

  • Mark 2:1-12 NIV v 5. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “ Son, your sins are forgiven.” v 10.
  • “But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins…”He said to the paralytic, v11.
  • “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” “It is interesting to note that in John 20:22-23, Jesus breathes upon his disciples to receive the Holy Spirit, and then pronounces, “If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”  Jesus is giving the church the authority to announce His forgiveness in the lives of those who come to Him in faith.
  • We do not have the innate ability to forgive anyone’s sins against God, or to withhold God’s forgiveness of sins from anybody.  But Jesus has given the Church the authority to act as His regents or representatives in the world, and to speak on His behalf.  We can declare that “God forgives you” with all the authority of Jesus, because we are not declaring our forgiveness, but rather His forgiveness in Christ.  We are merely pronouncing the forgiveness made possible by the sacrifice of Christ.”-Timothy Tennent, President, Asbury Theological Seminary http://blogs.asburyseminary.edu/global-talk/the-temple-is-here-mark-21-12/ [Bolded emphasis mine]

3.  His Holiness John Paul II, First Sunday of Lent “Day of Pardon” Presentation Vatican Basilica, 12 March 2000:

  • The meaning of the celebration of Lent: “…Christians are invited to acknowledge, before God and before those offended by their actions, the faults which they have committed. Let them do so without seeking anything in return, but strengthened only by the ‘love of God which has been poured finto our hearts’ (Rom 5:5)” (Incarnationis Mysterium, 11; cf. Terno Millennio Adveniente, 33).
  • …The Lord has been living and present in his Church, and through the Saints he has demonstrated that he continues to be at work in human history, in the midst of his community. Certainly, Christians, as pilgrims and wayfarers towards the Kingdom, remain sinners, frail, weak and subject to the temptations of Satan, the Prince of this world, despite their incorporation into the Body of Christ. In every generation the holiness of the Church has shone forth, witnessed by countless numbers of her sons and daughters; yet this holiness has been contradicted by the continuing presence of sin which burdens the journey of God’s People. The Church can sing both the Magnificat for what God has accomplished within her and the Miserere for the sins of Christians, for which she stands in need of purification, penance and renewal (cf. Lumen Gentium, 8).
  • “The Church cannot cross the threshold of the new millennium without encouraging her children to purify themselves through repentance of past errors and instances of infidelity, inconsistency and slowness to act” (Tertio Millennio Adveniente, 33). Consequently, a liturgy seeking pardon from God for the sins committed by Christians down the centuries is not only legitimate; it is also the most fitting means of expressing repentance and gaining purification.  Pope John Paul II, in a primatial act, confesses the sins of Christians over the centuries down to our own time, conscious that the Church is a unique subject in history, “a single mystical person”. The Church is a communion of saints, but a solidarity in sin also exists among all the members of the People of God: the bearers of the Petrine ministry, Bishops, priests, religious and lay faithful.– Source: http://www.catholiclinks.org/sacramentoperdondiadelperdon.htm  [Bolded emphasis mine.]

In Closing

Not all, but many, stories of the past are characterized by an antagonist/ protagonist relationship. I want to get beyond that broken record! I want to remember that I am just like them both; a human being with a heart filled with mixed motives! Perhaps one day we will learn to let the other guy off the hook, and create a just and merciful analytical model for history that will foster future generations in their struggles to ‘love their enemies, and do good to those who persecute them.’ May we, by the authority of the King of the Universe, practice to: heal the past, free the present, and bless the future. Amen!

James D. Orvis

 

 

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