Category Archives: Home Tracks

Home. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. (Deuteronomy 6:6-7)

Ignoring Romans 12:2 How Government Schools And Urban Living Have Led To Mind Control In The 21st Century (Segment E)

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The Celebrity Idols Factor

 

If there is a TV program with an appropriate title it is “American Idol.”   While it is relatively easy to point out some positive benefits of such entertainment, the audience is unknowingly contributing to our problem in America; the problem is hero worship. Movies, TV, sports, and the pop music industry supply more than enough American idols. While our teens, in general, are woefully ignorant of history and current affairs outside of the celebrities they worship, they likely know lyrics to ungodly songs, and likely know much about which unmarried Hollywood starlet (or is that harlot?) is sleeping with Hollywood stud what’s-his-name.

In a word, America has become obsessed with entertainment, and it is even more troubling when we consider that grade school aged children are often exposed to television programming that promotes the worship of such idols. As a matter of fact, the idol worship often begins with pre-school-aged children as they watch fantasy programming on TV. Teens are affected more than anyone else because of the school factor, the free time factor, and the freedom factor; the freedom to make certain choices on their own. The fathers in a similar fashion have become obsessed with sports. The 2013 NFL Super Bowl is less than a week away as I write this. If an alien from another planet were to visit us, or if a Founding Father visited us, or if someone who sailed across the Atlantic on the Mayflower visited us, they would no doubt be shocked at our obsession with a single GAME of football.

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The Time and Space Factors

 

In broad terms, there are two factors that are precursors to the obsession with sports and other forms of entertainment. Space is one factor; when people become crowded into small spaces, they are limited in their ability to be entertained by what God has already given us, his creation. The small living space in cities also limits certain creative endeavors. Try building a tree house inside many cities and see what happens. Or, plant garden vegetables between the front of your house and the street, and see how that goes over with neighbors, the homeowner’s association, and city officials.

The second precursor is time. Dad is home from work, the kids home from school, the automatic dishwasher eliminates some meaningful work, and boredom sets in. People seemingly have nothing to do, especially when you discount the activity of actually reading the Bible or some other book as a meaningful/enjoyable use of one’s time.

Furthermore, there are so many sources of available entertainment, especially with hundreds of TV channels, the Internet, mobile phones, and other devices that allow people to watch sports, play silly games, chit-chat, Tweet, text, send photos; it is just seems to be endless.

Therefore, once people are crowded into small spaces with time on their hands, then a real challenge lies in what they are to do. Why not just grab the TV remote and get your daily mind poison? Or, pick up that mobile phone and go at it, so to speak. Think about it: a popular phone app lets people play Angry Birds that seems to be addictive. My two cents; Angry Birds played by crazy people.

Entertainment has become a time hog – As we look at the history of the family dating back to Old Testament days and compare that to family relationships today, the follow becomes evident:

  1. Fathers and sons don’t spend as much time together now as they did in the past
  2. Sons were separated from the fathers when they began attending public schools
  3. Fathers working in the city accounted for much of the father/son separation
  4. The sons filled their time with entertainment
  5. Entertainment also began to fill the father’s time schedule
  6. Sons are likely separated from their fathers about three-fourths of their waking hours and entertainment accounts for much of that.
  7. To a large extent, the entertainment becomes addictive; once they get use to being entertained, then neither the son nor the father care about spending time with the other. At least on the surface, that’s the likely outcome in my opinion.

Now when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people assembled about Aaron and said to him, “Come, make us a god who will go before us…” (Exodus 32:1, NASB)

The Bible says the Israelis wanted to make a god because Moses was taking too long to descend from the mountain. The basic principle shown in that Scripture is still at play today… people get bored waiting. I suppose we could say that’s why the Devil invented the TV, plus a handy remote control.

In conclusion, regarding this lengthy discussion about entertainment, fathers and sons have filled their daily lives with things that occupy their time using those things that are most readily available. It becomes so much easier when they are confined to a small physical area. It is much like the domestication of an untamed, or wild animal; it is much easier after you first capture, and then confine it to a small place. Then you feed it what you want it to eat, and gradually over time you train it to do what you want. Who would do that to us, especially our sons and daughters, grandsons and granddaughters? Who wants us to loose the war with the information of this age (IOTA)?

 

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The Pigeon Religion Factor

 

Pigeon religion has reference to the fact that too much of Christianity is based upon placing individuals into special age and/or interest groups much like one would place items in the pigeonholes of a roll top desk. Nothing in early church history suggests that we should follow such a pattern. In fact, the church has conformed to the world, in particular the public school system. During the latter half of the 20th Century many small one-room schools were replaced with larger consolidated schools. The one-room schools often had students ranging in age from six years to 14 years, and often, older students assisted the teacher by helping younger students in the classroom.  I have more knowledge of this than the average person  because my Mother taught in one-room schools, and my wife, Glenda, attended such schools.  As larger schools were built, students where placed in classrooms according to age much like placing them in pigeonholes. In a similar manner, mega-churches have been on the rise, and similarities can be seen between big schools and big church congregations. Some knowledge of history can help us realize how the church has in many ways conformed to this age because of these changes.

A problem many of us have with history is that we don’t relate to any part of history in which we have not lived. Our thinking based on this view of history is dangerous, as we do not know all the influences that have shaped the pattern in which we now live. In fact, we know very few. The public school system is one of my favorite whipping boys, mainly because criticizing the public schools is like picking low-hanging fruit from a tree. Just walk around that public school tree and stop at any point, reach up and pick something to criticize and you will be safe. At this point in history, there is little that we can call correct and good concerning public schools.

When teens are put in a pigeonhole, they expect to hear things that relate to their interest and selfish desires. They don’t have to give a whit about the elderly widow ladies in the congregation; after all they are just old out-dated people. The chitchat among the teens is of course, geared to the same self interest. Teens are not unique in these matters; just pick any group and you have similar attitudes. How about the fact that some adults don’t want the interuptive crying of a baby while the pastor is so eloquently proclaiming his latest prosperity message. The larger the congregation the more pigeonholes to separate families into different groups.

One of the unintended consequences of pigeon religion is that this separation of family members may send an unspoken message that things of God happen in God’s house (that building constructed by men, where people congregate), and not particularly anywhere else. Furthermore, it makes it easy for some parents to shift all the responsibility of godly teaching to others. It can cause the father of the household to relinquish his responsibilities as priest of his home to someone in his congregation, the pastor, the teen pastor, and the Sunday school teachers.

In summary lets consider the hazards of pigeon religion in the form of a bullet point list. Pigeon religion promotes:

  • Selfishness
  • A narrow worldview, a world of one person, me, myself,
  • Dumbing down to the lowest level of teaching/learning
  • Entertainment that can become the emphasis as a substitute for teaching important biblical principles
  • The separation of family members at a time when we are to focus on God
  • The centrality of the pastor rather than Jesus, as leader of the Church
  • The unspoken idea that fathers can abandon their priestly responsibilities
  • Attitude that I don’t have to study; someone will teach me
  • The idea that the pew-sitter, especially adults, have nothing to contribute to the gathering of the believers; “Just be quiet, listen, and pay your tithes.”

Christians have a personal relationship with Father God through His son Jesus Christ, yet much of what the church congregations do is merely following or conforming to patterns of this age, particular the public school system model.

Christian schools have also been justly criticized for following the pattern set by public schools, using similar textbooks, methods of teaching, etc. with a prayer added to cover the God part of the day. The Nehemiah Institute through their PEERS testing program, has shown that most Christian school students have a worldview that is barely better than those students in public schools, and that there has been an alarming decrease in Christian Worldview understanding during the past decade. That’s convincing evidence that the pattern of this world is more closely followed in Christian schools than we would like to believe.

In summary of pigeon religion, we have followed a worldly pattern of categorizing people into groups that better enable mob control as it were, which is antithetical to cultivating individual development and responsibility, including the development of a stronger personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. It also hinders family oriented Christian gatherings and fails to promote inter-generational fellowship.

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The College Factor

 

There is ample evidence that shows that the college campus is filled with more misinformation than any other place in America. There are four major reasons for this:

  1. Students on average arrive on campus with a warped worldview because they have been trained that way for 12-13 years in public schools.
  2. Students come to campus with freedom they did not have while living at home with their parents.
  3. The college campus has long been a cauldron for radical thinking professors, mainly in the social sciences (an oxymoron, for sure, as social and science do not go together), to settle in and spew their ideologies on to an unsuspecting captive audience.
  4. The marriage between radical college professors and tyrannical minded politicians and businessmen provides fertile ground to promote every imaginable thing that is contrary to God’s Holy Word.

It is not necessary to use a sledgehammer to kill this fly, but a few examples can give us all the information we need to make an informed judgment. I did a search (Start Page) for “queer studies college” and got over 290,000 results. At Wikipedia I found this, ” There are currently over 40 certificate and degree granting programs with at least five institutions in the United States offering an undergraduate major…”  I looked at courses offered at one of the colleges and learned that they have more that 20 separate courses in their queer department. That’s queer, for certain.

While five colleges with a queer studies major may not sound like many, I found that more than 200 colleges have Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) chapters. In short, if the leadership at a college campus has trouble with gender identity, then there is little reason for any sane parent to send his son or daughter there to spend four years of one’s life trying to get an education in such an warped environment, and paying big bucks to do so.  Some might say that is intolerant. That’s right, it is. Let me emphasize that much of “education” takes place outside the formal classroom setting. Also remember we are talking here about God’s instruction, “Do not be conformed to this age.”

Just as a matter of review at this point consider:

  1. A student beginning at five years of age is separated from his parents for six to eight hours daily during the school year for 13 years before entering college.
  2. The city dwelling student is also separated from at least one parent all summer.
  3. The average students gets no work experience
  4. The student has thousands of hours of media indoctrination by the time he finishes high school
  5. Therefore, upon entering college the student is like a dry sponge for soaking up radical, ungodly propaganda found on most every campus.

NOTES:

LARGE of anything seems to be a problem, large government, large cities, large schools, and large church congregations all contribute to the problem of conforming to the pattern of this world.  Part of that pattern is “group think,” which stiffens creativity, individual thought and action.  Furthermore, I remind the reader that Christians have a personal relationship with God, the Father, through His Son, Jesus Christ.  It is a one-on-one relationship, and not a result of the Communist inspired “group think.”…DR, 10/14/17

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Ignoring Romans 12:2 How Government Schools And Urban Living Have Led To Mind Control In The 21st Century (Segment D)

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The Entertainment Factor

 

Those of us in agriculture like to say that our advances in our professions freed up time for men to take other jobs. It is a “which came first the chicken or the egg” situation. Industrial/technological inventions helped farmers produce more efficiently, and the farmers’ efficiency helped free up labor for other occupations.

For centuries man’s day was likely filled with similar activity, working, eating, walking, and sleeping with little time for daily entertainment. That did not change much until large numbers of people moved into the cities. I hasten to point out that the city environment had some similar affects on both adults and youth. The available time for entertainment from Moses until the end of the 19th Century changed very little. When the city population went from 10 percent up to 80 percent, extra time for entertainment evolved. Much of the entertainment had to be created in order to give people something to do. Or, more accurately, enterprising people saw a market for entertainment because many people were available as potential customers. Created entertainment more nearly describes the activities for school age people.

Can we used for home use milk daily

Entertainment for Farm Families – Most of the increase in farm production has occurred during my lifetime. Farmers went from producing food for about 20 people to a level of producing enough for more than 150 people. I know something about how farm people spend their time.  I was a farm boy, a Dairy Science major in college, a county agent, a PhD in animal science, a college professor in animal science, and for the last 30 years, a farmer. I know what I did with my time in the 1940s as a small child. I know what I did with my time in the 1950s as a teenager; I know what it is like as an adult living in cities (20 years) and how I spent my time. I know what a farmer in this day does with his time. I know what it is like to live on a farm as a 71-year old, as I continue to farm. I know what to do with any spare time I have. Practically all my life I have been associated with agriculture. For most of that period I have also been involved either directly or indirectly with education of young people.

Entertainment in the rural environment was easy for this farm boy. I’ll give some examples of my time growing up on a dairy farm. My dad went to bed about 8:30 p.m. because he arose early to milk the cows. While I didn’t help milk in the mornings, I did do some chores in the morning and finished those in time for breakfast at 7:00 a.m. when the entire family sat down together. After breakfast I did a few more chores before going to school. After school I had more chores and helped milk the 30 cows. Like clockwork, Dad and I entered the house carrying a gallon of milk in a metal can for home use at 6:00 p.m. The entire family sat down at 6:00 for the evening meal.  After supper Dad might work in the garden while it was cool, and perhaps I would go hunting groundhogs.

During a three or four week period in September and October before the hunting season opened, I would go to the woods after school each day to sit and watch squirrels.

Woods near dairy, a nice place to visit in the fall

Because I had work to do on the dairy farm my time in the woods was limited each day, but I really looked forward to that pre-hunting season activity. While I didn’t actually spend a lot of time hunting, the time in the woods when temperatures were nice and the tree foliage was changing provided some genuine joy.

Sports in our public school were a part of our lives. I participated in baseball and basketball, but these activities did not dominate the lives of families involved. All practice for these sports took place in the last hour of the school day, and there were no other practice sessions. Baseball games were held during the afternoon on school days, and basketball games were at night during school days. The activity was enjoyable, but as I analyze it now, there seemed to be more balance with regard to sports time versus family time than some of the sports programs today, even those in rural areas.

Summer brought on projects for me and my cousins like building dams across the creek to make a swimming hole, building tree houses, making carts from junk machinery parts. Then there were 4-H projects, fitting and showing livestock for fairs, the pony rides, more hunting, exploring the five caves within walking distance of home, etc. Creativity was a major part of

DR and Champion Market Lamb, WV State Fair, 1956

summer entertainment as we built things, trained animals, and worked to attain some goal. I remember digging a groundhog out of his borrow, and then placed him in a rabbit cage I had. Of course I didn’t foresee the fact that our farm dog would tear the cage apart the first night and kill the groundhog. I also remember the entertainment some of us got catching bullfrogs by hand at nighttime. It took a flashlight, a stealth technique and a quick hand. My main point is that we did not have to look for things to do on the farm. Lets face it, city folk have never had it so good.

We never had summer baseball practice, because we didn’t have Little League Baseball. The nearest swimming pool was 12 miles away, and it was cold spring water. We really didn’t have time to fret over our lack of a swimming pool. The same can be said about movies; we rarely saw one, but didn’t miss them either. Television viewing was self-limiting in a way because we did not get a TV set until I was about 10-12 years old and there was little programming of interest to me, and besides, my schedule was full anyway. In those days I never heard of a small child watching Saturday morning cartoons. Honestly, I don’t even know if cartoons were on TV then. As I look back and recall our farm life and compare that to the cities full of thousands of children living in an environment where creative, productive work and play opportunities seem to be almost completely lacking among young people, I view their situation as sad. It is as if some unseen master is manipulating their lives in order that these children may become addicted entertainment slaves in a make-believe world. In a like manner, adults have so few options for their leisure time.

To summarize my experience as a farm boy in the 1940s and 50s, work was a way of life for the entire family. We were not overworked. Sure there were some jobs that were not particularly enjoyable, but tell me there is anything wrong with that? Is life not just like that, we at times have work to do that is necessary, but not particularly enjoyable? Entertainment was also a part of life, but it did not consist of a large block of time, plus it was woven in with the other activities in an almost seamless manner, like the trips to the woods to watch squirrels for a half-hour before completing farm chores. We didn’t have to take a trip in an automobile to some place for that bit of entertainment.

Entertainment for Urban Families – While I spent about 20 years of my adult life in small towns and cities, it has been more than 30 years since I lived in that type environment. I do have opportunity to visit urban areas at times. Most of my focus here has been on entertainment for young people, although some of the same challenges for youth also apply to adults, mainly what do people do with their free time.

For farm people, the term “free time” is almost laughable. Many urban dwellers would not understand, since they have little or no concept of farm life. For example, as I write this, we are in the long days of summer. I go out on the farm twice after the evening meal, once to tend to some minor chores and put the sheep into a smaller field to protect them from coyotes (guard dogs help). The second time is near dark and that trip is to shut the doors to two chicken coops so they will be protected from predators. Free time in excess is typical and basically a very serious problem in urban areas. For the discussion to follow, I will separate urban youth into two broad categories again.

Entertainment for Poor Inner City Youth. At the risk of stereotyping, the following are characteristic of many in this environment: poor, small living space, unwed mothers, renters. The neighborhood has a lot of children with basically no work to do, and all their play must be made up. The play is not a natural part of the environment as it can be with farm-reared children. Many are what I call half-orphans, meaning they have one parent missing from the home, usually the father, and some likely do not even know who their father is. So here is the setup outlining just a few possibilities:

  • Products of public schools
  • Half-orphans in many cases
  • No work to do
  • Much idle time
  • Likely entertained by various types of media

What do we expect with this type mix? No more questions.

Entertainment for Affluent Urban Youth. These young people live in a more spacious home and neighborhood, some in very upscale places. However, they have several similarities when compared to the inner city youth. Perhaps they listen to similar music, use mobile phones for much of their entertainment, and likely view some of the same unwholesome TV programming. They are more likely to travel by automobile to arrive at their place of after-school activity.

  • Products of public schools
  • Some half-orphans
  • No work to do
  • Some idle time
  • Likely entertained by various types of media
  • Enrolled in multiple activities (sports, arts) to entertain/keep busy

There are two primary points to make here. First: the inner city group is likely to get in trouble quicker than the affluent group. I’ll just leave it at that. Secondly: both groups have time from end of the school day, perhaps 3:30 p.m. until some unknown bedtime, where there is little natural flow of work, family time, and entertainment. Unlike the farm boy who may do chores before the seven o’clock breakfast, the city dwellers often stay up late at night and sleep as late as possible the next morning. The boy who lives and works on the farm has early bedtime as a matter fact of his lifestyle.

It is safe to say that practically all media entertainment aimed at youth is unwholesome. While the affluent families are more likely to have a father in the home, there is little likelihood that the fathers and sons spend a lot of time together as they “walk by the way. In fact,  some suburban fathers have long drives and get home late from work.

The final, and yet very important thing to emphasize is that work is absent from the lives of practically all urban youth. The idea that young people 12 – 18 years of age do not need to work is foolish at the very least. It is almost beside the point that we say, “But, they don’t have opportunity to work.” True, they don’t for the most part, but perhaps the Body of Christ needs to do some work here.

Perhaps Christians should sit down and make a long list of all the advantages of urban living and make a list of all the disadvantages. One of the more ominous facts about all who live in urban areas is that adults and youth alike have become addicted to entertainment. As a consequence they have a problem looking at life through any other set of glasses. My own experience plus that of others my age, who have lived in both cities and rural areas, gives us some unique perspectives. This is particularly true since we also had close ties to days dating back to the Great Depression era. Our parents lived in those days, and we learned some valuable principles concerning work ethic, perseverance, conservation, frugality, family enterprise, and challenged living that was born out of their experience. Furthermore, my generation knew a time when mobile phones, computers, television and cultural debauchery on a mass scale did not exist. We know there can be a better cultural environment than that we see now. We saw a change in the culture that went from “Father Knows Best” to “Dad is a Dummy.” God knew what He was talking about with his commands that instructed men to see that both sons and grandsons were taught properly.  When I look back on the post WWII days of growing up in a rural farm area, I do see one disadvantage we experienced. Since we were surrounded by adults at home, school, church and community who had lived through the challenges of the Great Depression days, there was a constant drumbeat from adults that we needed to get all the education we could get and then move to more urban areas in order to find work. In other words, we were not encouraged to stay in the rural area and work. Many of us left the area, while many of the back-to-earth, hippy generation moved to rural areas like my home area about 10-15 years after I graduated from high school. The “earthals,” as some call them, saw the advantage of living in rural areas, became productive citizens, and many demonstrated excellent entrepreneurial skills. Then of course, many people like myself moved back after working in the cities for a while.


NOTES:

This chapter, “The Entertainment Factor,” is perhaps the most important chapter in this book that explains how we have ignored Romans 12:2. Christians who believe the way to change our culture to a to a more positive one is through changing our government school system, are just plain foolish, in my opinion. I firmly believe we now have a culture that has overdosed on entertainment, BIG TIME. …DR, 10/12/17

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Ignoring Romans 12:2 How Government Schools And Urban Living Have Led To Mind Control In The 21st Century (Segment B)

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The Messages in This Book

 

The foundation for the messages in this book comes from Romans 12:2 whereby the Bible tells us:  Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God. This, of course, suggests that in order to have discernment as to God’s will, you must first have your mind renewed, and thus this should help you avoid conforming to this age.

From that foundational message in Romans 12:2, we learn what God’s Word, the Bible, has to say about how fathers should, at all times, be teaching their children. Scripture in Deuteronomy shows us those instructions.

It’s interesting how we see history through the time period in which we live, and tend to pay little attention to what came before. We sometimes fail to understand the precursors to the changes we personally witnessed. The purpose here is to give a brief overview, and perhaps add one or two elements you hadn’t thought about previously.

Many people would agree that the breakdown of the family has been a major contributing factor to the current problems in society. While that is true, we must ask the question, “What caused the breakdown of the family?”

Many cite taking prayer and the Ten Commandments out of the public schools as a beginning to the breakdown of the family. Some say it was the governmental subsidies to unwed mothers. Some say the women’s liberation movement. Some say sexual perversion in general. Some say it was when the wife/mother left home to take a job..

Eleven whole chapters in this book outline the adverse factors that have affected father/son relationships. I use the father/son designation rather than parent/child simply because the Bible does so in the Scriptures found in Deuteronomy. When we study the lifestyles of people since the time of Moses, we find that some key factors changed very little for a period of nearly 3000 years. In my opinion, there have been two primary changes during the past 150 years that have contributed most to our dilemma, conforming to this age. Both of these changes are precursors to destroying father/son relationships.   Or perhaps I should say, the separation of fathers and sons ultimately led the mind control of generations to follow. The shift from farm to urban living is one precursor. The second major factor has been the separation of children from parents by the public school system. While this book outlines 11 factors, most of the last nine are the result of the first two, (1) the move from farm to city, and. (2) the training in public schools.

Acquiring knowledge about those changes should help us discern what is good, pleasing and perfect in God’s will for our lives, and give us some direction as to how we can make some necessary adjustments as believers in the Word of God.

3

God’s Instruction In The Old Testament

 

Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as [b]frontals [c]on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. (Deut. 6: 4- 9, NASB)

The Bible verse above is very familiar to many, especially those who have a firm belief that homeschooling and/or Christian schools are the only appropriate methods for training our children. Now lets take a look at the Scripture that immediately preceded, the first three versus of Deuteronomy 6.

Now this is the commandment, the statutes and the judgments which the Lord your God has commanded me to teach you, that you might do them in the land where you are going over to possess it, so that you and your son and your grandson might fear the Lord your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged. O Israel, you should listen and [a]be careful to do it, that it may be well with you and that you may multiply greatly, just as the Lord, the God of your fathers, has promised you, in a land flowing with milk and honey.

Now notice particularly the second verse where it says so that you and your son and your grandson might fear the Lord your God, … What we have here is an emphasis on three generations; instructions to the fathers was that they, their children and their grandchildren, all three generations need to learn God’s teaching. It seems man must first learn God’s statutes and judgments, and then make sure that information was carried down for the next two generations. In other words, it is not good enough for man to learn the Scriptures, he must teach his son as shown in verse seven, but the father also has responsibility to his grandsons as well.

Playing the Devil’s advocate, I ask, how does this square up with church gatherings where the children are separated from the parents and put in the “children’s church,” or the teens separated from the parents and taught something “relevant” to teens, or have teaching about things high schoolers are interested in hearing. Can we say “itching ears?” Perhaps we should focus on what God says is relevant?

I think most people who read these first few verses in Deuteronomy likely agree with the premise that man should be teaching his children at all times. Problem is; do they do it? Is it even physically possible? How many hours a day do a father and son spend time together? The Bible says to teach while you sit in your house and when you walk by the way, when you lie down and when you get up. Let’s be real, most men are out of the house early in the morning to go to work. At the end of the school day children may be off to practice some activity like ballet or some ball game. There are likely very few families who sit down and eat the evening meal together. I feel certain the percent of families where the entire family sits down for breakfast TOGETHER would likely be less that three percent, ten percent maximum. Let’s just say ten percent of families eat breakfast together. Is there a lot of teaching of the father to the son during this time to make up for the other 90 percent? The reader and I both know that practically no teaching of biblical principles takes place each morning before father goes to work.

Why does the father even GO to work? Can he not work in his home? Yes, father working in the home is a bygone day. So is Deuteronomy only good for the ancient days when men were at home grubbing out a living by herding animals or gathering food in the fields? Do we just automatically assume that this is outdated because most of us don’t herd goats and sheep anymore?

Okay, okay, let’s just say I am not likely to get very far with this type discussion even if I am one of those individuals who does herd sheep. Lets say that it is near impossible because of work schedules of parents and schooling of children to have the father walk with his son during the day.

Do we have other wiggle room for trying to adhere to Deuteronomy 6?   If children are in private or government schools, then there is an eight-hour block of time away from home. What about dinner, or supper, as we say on the farm? Does the entire family eat together? Could this substitute for some of the teaching as the father and child “walk by the way?” Do the father and child have two to three hours before bedtime where they can discuss God’s commands?   For now I will leave those for discussion later.

4

God’s Instruction In The New Testament

 

Therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, I urge you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God; this is your spiritual worship.  Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God. (Romans 12:1-2)

In Romans 12:2, some translations say, “Do not be conformed to this age.” The ASV says, “And be not fashioned according to this world,” the GNV says, “And fashion not yourselves like unto this world,” and the NIV says, “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world…” So in the versions shown here we are instructed; Do not be conformed, fashioned, or influenced by the pattern of this world. If we ask what “this age” means some might say that means the age in which Romans was written, or perhaps just the circumstances at the time for those who lived in Rome. For most of us we would likely agree that regardless of the age, we are not to conform to the pattern of the rest of the world.

What is meant by “Do not be conformed to this age?” One way to conform is by physical force. Should you be placed in a locked cell, as in prison, physically you would be conformed. Or, you could have a heavy steel ball attached to a chain on one end and to your leg on the other; you would be conformed by force. Tyrants use force to make people conform. Islam teaches dominance in their religion. Infidels (any who are not Muslim) who are captured are forced to convert to Islam or suffer the consequences of being a lower class, abused class of people, or be killed. People who are forced into slave labor are conformed by force.

Our instruction from the Bible is referring to our voluntary decisions to “conform to this age.” This can become tricky since tyrants are likely always looking for new ways to cause people to be conformed to the desire of the tyrant. For example, much of the civil rights legislation in America was portrayed as a form of freedom, while in fact, over a period of three or four decades many were being manipulated or conformed into a type of slavery. The best example is the fact that when our federal government began heavily subsidizing unwed mothers while neglecting to hold fathers of the illegitimate babies accountable. The result was that a large percentage of unwed mothers became slaves of the government over a period of about four decades. How so? They are supported by taxpayer funds, and this has essentially made them slaves to the government system. The family was destroyed in the process.

5

Why The Information Age May Be The Most Critical Age In History

 

Throughout history there have been various ages defined by certain significant activity and/or products of those particular times. For example, the Stone Age, the Bronze Age, the Iron Age, the Industrial Age were forerunners to the Information Age. In the earlier ages, man used his hands to work with those materials like bronze and iron to make tools, for example. He would then use these tools to make other things. In each age, man was using physical materials and using his physical body, his hands, to construct and shape products. In contrast, the Information Age is the first time in history whereby products that influence the MIND have been developed. That is VERY different. All the information systems we have now with computers, phones, Internet, etc. can be used to influence the mind. So for the first time since the Bible was written, we have a serious threat of mind control either by accident at the least, or at worst, on purpose by would-be-tyrants. In fact, I don’t think it is too much of a stretch to say that Romans 12:2 is more relevant now than anytime since it was first penned. Think about it; some falsehood can be written down and within a few minutes time it can be read at the far corners of the earth via television, phone, or the Internet. We often hear that something has gone viral, usually a short video.   Masses of people can be deceived quickly to follow false leaders of some country, false teachers of some ideology, or even the false doctrine formulated by someone posing as a Christian.

The Information Age has allowed both the good and the bad information to travel at lightning speed. The Bible tells us “Do not be conformed to this age,” and we are in the Information Age, the one age where the mind can easily be adversely affected or controlled. Christians are is essence at war with all those avenues of mind control that have been developed in a matter of a few years. It has happened so quickly that in many ways we have been caught off guard. We have been so fascinated with the use of advanced technology, that we tend to overlook the harmful effects, which are now becoming more evident as each day passes.

The advancing technology of the Information Age is just one aspect of how we are at risk of being conformed to this age. Major changes in rural versus city places of residency, major changes in education, and family lifestyles during the past 200 years are all factors that deserve our close attention lest we continue to become more conformed to this age.


NOTES:

Never in modern times have we seen the turmoil such as we have now. Currently, one of the hot button issues has been the players in the National Football League who have been disrespecting the American flag by their behavior while the Star Spangled Banner is being played prior to the game.  They fail to stand, and thus they insult large segments of their fan base, and likely most of us who are not fans of any NFL team.   Some are predicting the end of the NFL, and if it does crash, I say, “Good riddance!”   In more than one of the chapters to follow, I point out that we are obsessed with entertainment, and this contributes to our “conforming to this age.”  DR, October 2017


Related: Book, Segment A

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