Tuesday, September 25, 2012

A Letter About a County Fair Selling Beer!

This year for the first time one of our county fairs chose to sell beer during its session at the beginning of September. As could be expected there were numerous responses to this issue as Cambria County in central Pennsylvania placed itself on the cutting edge of making a family oriented event one in which beverage alcohol would be available. County fairs are rather numerous in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and have always had a strong emphasis on family with activities involving persons of all ages. The one thing held in common by them was the fact that no alcoholic beverages would be available and the consumption of such beverages was absolutely forbidden on the premises. But that is obviously changing. It may be that there are others such as Cambria County that are doing this as well, but at this point in time I know of none.

Kennywood Park in Pittsburgh just took the step to sell beer recently shortly before closing for the season. It also over time has prided itself on being "family oriented."

A legitimate question can be raised -- can such institutions really claim to be "family oriented" when alcoholic beverages are available for purchase and consumption of the same takes place on the premises?

Below is a letter that was sent to two local newspapers on the Cambria County Fair choice to sell beer. I do not know if the letters were published. I am taking the position that they were not until I hear otherwise. The one always called me to verify that I had written the letter and since I did not receive a call, I assume they did not publish it.

Letter is as follows:

Tuesday, September 04, 2012


Cambria County Fair officials have made the choice to sell beverage alcohol at the fair this year. In an attempt to defend this action, one official said that they will have it under complete "control." He failed to elaborate on how they plan to control it after persons with the alcohol in their system leave the fairgrounds.

After 53 years in the ministry there is absolutely nothing positive that I can say about beverage alcohol. It has ruined more lives and destroyed more families than any other issue with which I have had to deal over those years. National statistics also are quite negative when it comes to destruction and loss of life caused by beverage alcohol.

A question for those Cambria County Fair officials: how would you like to conduct the funeral for an exceptional high school student who was cut down, along with his girl friend, by a character with alcohol in his system who was driving at about 85 MPH? He was driving with a suspended license due to previous conviction for drunken driving. To add great insult to injury an unscrupulous lawyer who had abandoned all ethical and moral standards in his practice got the killer off on a technicality!

Greed has a wide variety of ways in manifesting itself with end results summed up in words such as tragedy and disaster! It may seem we are getting away with something for a time and will come out on top in the end, only to discover too late in eternity the choice made was a very deadly mistake!

Still contending at www.crrange.com, blogging at http://cdharriger.blogspot.com and warning at www.crrange.com/USACoffin.html

Clayton D. Harriger, Pastor

The new wine fails, the vine languishes, all the merry-hearted sigh. The mirth of the tambourine ceases, the noise of the jubilant ends, the joy of the harp ceases. They shall not drink wine with a song; strong drink is bitter to those who drink it. The city of confusion is broken down; every house is shut up, so that none may go in. There is a crying for wine in the streets, all joy is darkened, the mirth of the land is gone. --- Isaiah 24:7-11

Monday, September 24, 2012

Some Very Distinct Differences Between Islam and Christianity!

"This just in: Appeasement doesn't work -- deadly Muslim riots continue despite Obama's ad denouncing Muhammad video" --- one of numerous internet headlines and links related to Muslim rioting in different nations

A video was produced which greatly offended Muslims and so rioting has taken place in many locations around the world as a result. This is not the first time riots and violence has erupted when certain acts interpreted as "offensive" to those who believe and practice the teachings of the Quran (Koran). In some nations one has to be extremely careful in how you speak concerning Islam, the Quran, and of course, the prophet Muhammad.

Just recently an American ambassador and some staff members were killed in Libya as a result of violence spawned by Muslims.

Have you noticed how different Christianity is in response to insults made regarding the faith, the Bible, or those that demean the Person of Jesus Christ Himself?

How many riots have been initiated by Christians? How many buildings have been burned? How many people have been injured? Worse yet, how many people have been killed because someone published a film or video that demeans the Christian faith and those who seek to practice that faith?

Over the years books have been written and films out of Hollywood itself that are in direct contradiction to the Bible teaching concerning the Christian faith. In 1987 an “artist” sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts, Andres Serrano, took a crucifix and submerged it in a glass of his own urine. The piece, titled "Piss Christ," was a winner of the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art's Awards! If Christians would have reacted to that as do Muslims in a similar situation related to their Islamic faith, rioting would have broken out, fires set, human lives injured and lost, and likely a high price set on the head of the man responsible. In spite of such an "insult" along with many others over the years, no rioting with extensive destruction of property nor injury or death to persons has resulted!

This is not to claim a perfect track record over time for Christianity. There were those moments in history when individuals claiming to be "Christian" did some very horrible things in the name of Christianity. Jesus indicated we would know the true from the false by the kind of fruit which has resulted in the actions done -- "By their fruits you shall know them.", said Jesus. A Christian who has been truly born again (as stressed by Jesus in Gospel of John 3) will not engage in willful violence that will destroy property, inflict bodily injury, or kill people.

Another interesting wrinkle in this is the fact that in a number of Muslim dominated countries Christians are not permitted to discuss their faith with Muslims and for a Muslim to become a Christian can result in death! To Muslims true to their faith, a Christian is considered an infidel. If infidels do not accept Islam as the faith and become committed to actively practicing that faith, under certain conditions the infidel is to be put to death.

But in the United States Muslims are free to express their faith, talk publicly about it, speak of it to their neighbors and no Christians will start rioting because of that. Christians are free to express disagreement which some of us have chosen to do. But we will stress that it is not a matter of personal opinion on our part, but rather we simply refer to the statements of Jesus Christ Himself and the claims which He made as being exclusively the way of salvation, forgiveness, and hope. Perhaps the biggest difference between Christianity and Islam is in the fact that in the Christian faith God became human in the Person of Jesus Christ and atoned for the sins of the entire human race, including Muslims, by virtue of His death on the cross. Allah did nothing that even remotely resembles such an act!

Christians, who are committed and true to their faith, envision a time in the future when Jesus Christ will have returned to this world which He originally created a long, long time ago. He will take full control of it with His angels and His saints. Finally after millenia of time the world will be in a state of total peace. One of many transforming transitions to take place will be the dismantlement and recycling of the implements of war out of which will be forged implements for peaceful and productive purposes that will enhance life in this new world!

Read the brief summary of this just below which makes absolutely no allowance for any other religion outside of Christianity. Conclusion: Christianity and Islam are totally incompatible in their purest expressions!

Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, "The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!" --- Revelation 11:15

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Democratic Forum in Johnstown PA!

Critz tries to move away from Obama --- front page headline by Johnstown Tribune-Democrat - 12/09/16

The 12th Congressional District in Pennsylvania used to be represented by the late John P. Murtha who had been in office since the early '70's. Because of the far reaching clout he had, he earned the dubious label of being "King of Pork!" Millions and millions of dollars rolled into Johnstown PA as he gained power and influence in office. In fact he held a higher status than Almighty God Himself through much of the 12th Congressional District. One of the "projects" he arranged to get was an 8 million dollar radar system at the Johnstown airport. Only problem was they had no one to operate it, so it sat unused for a long time until someone began to make an issue of it (wasted gov't money, you know) and then the hunt was on to try to find an operator.

Big John made an unexpected exit from this life due to complications following some surgery. Mark Critz was a high ranking member of his staff and decided he wanted the seat formerly held by his boss. He won in the special election.

Now Critz has to try and retain his seat this November in the U.S. Congress but certain things as advocated by Mr. Obama and the Democratic party are not acceptable to Congressman Critz and a number of his constituents! So as the headline clearly suggests, he is trying to put some distance between him and the president as well as the party.

Mr. Obama has clearly declared war on coal and numerous small signs in our area are being posted which draw attention to this "war" and that it is time for the president to be shown the exit and denial of a second term! This region is known among other things as being a coal mining region with a long history of involvement in the industry. And those signs calling for Obama's defeat are not just being posted on the lawns of Republicans, which are greatly outnumbered in the 12th district anyway.

But there are other issues Mr. Critz has to deal with in which the Democratic party has literally shot itself in the foot so far as many constituents in the 12th district are concerned. This is a district that is made up of a lot of Roman Catholics and various Orthodox groups, which means there is a very, very strong pro-life sentiment and that is demonstrated each January as many bus loads of persons go from this region to the March for Life in Washington DC. The Democratic party platform is pro-abortion, although the deceptive term "pro-choice" is often used in connection with the issue of destroying unborn children! And there is no room left for doubt that Mr. Obama and his wife are strong supporters of abortion, even late term if necessary -- for them there is no difference in terms of time, since you are only dealing with a mass of cells, tissue and blood, are you not? So Mr. Critz has made it a point to stress in his ads that he is pro-life!

Finally, the 12th Congressional District has a large segment of the population that is into hunting. Both male and female hunters take to the woods each year as evidenced by pictures printed each deer season. Some young females who have just been legally able to hunt have brought down some impressive buck deer. But the present administration in DC is moving more and more toward an anti-gun stance, and appears to be sympathetic to the United Nations' campaign on the control of small arms -- interpret that to literally mean eventual confiscation! The ads put out by Mr. Critz and his supporters also stress that he is "pro-gun," which is something you most definitely will not see in Mr. Obama's ad campaign!

Perhaps the best picture in this situation is that of a big worm on a very hot skillet -- you know who the worm is, don't you? His name happens to be Mark Critz who is striving to be John P. Murtha incarnate in the United States Congress in Washington DC!

"Look, the princes of Israel: each one has used his power to shed blood in you. In you they have made light of father and mother; in your midst they have oppressed the stranger; in you they have mistreated the fatherless and the widow. You have despised My holy things and profaned My Sabbaths. In you are men who slander to cause bloodshed; in you are those who eat on the mountains; in your midst they commit lewdness. In you men uncover their fathers' nakedness; in you they violate women who are set apart during their impurity. One commits abomination with his neighbor's wife; another lewdly defiles his daughter-in-law; and another in you violates his sister, his father's daughter. In you they take bribes to shed blood; you take usury and increase; you have made profit from your neighbors by extortion, and have forgotten Me," says the Lord GOD. "Behold, therefore, I beat My fists at the dishonest profit which you have made, and at the bloodshed which has been in your midst." --- Ezekiel 22:6-13

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Something Much Greater to Be Concerned About Than National Security!

Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying, "Now, son of man, will you judge, will you judge the bloody city? Yes, show her all her abominations! Then say, 'Thus says the Lord GOD: "The city sheds blood in her own midst, that her time may come; and she makes idols within herself to defile herself. You have become guilty by the blood which you have shed, and have defiled yourself with the idols which you have made. You have caused your days to draw near, and have come to the end of your years; therefore I have made you a reproach to the nations, and a mockery to all countries. Those near and those far from you will mock you as infamous and full of tumult. Look, the princes of Israel: each one has used his power to shed blood in you. In you they have made light of father and mother; in your midst they have oppressed the stranger; in you they have mistreated the fatherless and the widow. You have despised My holy things and profaned My Sabbaths.'" --- Ezekiel 22:1-8

The issue of national security again was the focus of attention with the killing of an American ambassador and other staff members recently in the country of Libya.

Additional reports dealt with effectiveness of airport security and whether we as a nation are more secure now as the 11th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on American soil was observed.

There was no want to statements made by Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney who are battling it out as to who will be president starting in mid-January 2013!

The greatest tragedy in all this drama was not the loss of more American lives, but the unwillingness to face and the intentional rejection of the truth as to what is necessary to establish a high level of national security.

All nations are accountable to Almighty God without exception. Those which have had access to His full revelaton from the beginning of their founding are especially "under the gun" as opposed to those who did not have the privilege of that revelation at their beginnings. The United States is one nation which has had full access to that special revelation (the holy Scriptures) from the time the first colonists settled in!

When a nation makes a profession of being "one nation under God" but has drifted far from the standards God has established for blessing, protection, preservation, and survival against all threats, then very unpleasant things are going to happen!

Rather than holding a position of honor and respect among other nations, God says He will humiliate the nation that claims to relate to Him but whose dominant spirit is one of defiance and a "I will do it my way!" attitude.

The history of the Israelite people from the time of Moses demonstrates a roller coaster experience. When they were at their best in a high state of obedience, they were invincible with an abundance of God's blessings resting upon them. But when they lapsed into disobedience, calamities increased with the eventual defeat by enemies. But prior to such disasters taking place, God faithfully sent His prophets to call the nation to repentance and warnings of impending judgment if repentance did not take place. In most instances the response to the prophets was negative with the people considering them a bunch of radicals that were out of their minds. In some instances they were put to death!

Since we as a nation are walking down the same road as did the ancient Israelites and have adopted the same attitude toward God and His ways as did they, we can expect the same outcome -- which is devastating judgment!

We are guilty of massive idolatry, sexual immorality, misleading our young by teaching and example, trashing the day that originally was intended to be a day of worship and rest, compromising basic doctrines of the Christian faith, and all this crowned with a record of the innocent blood of 55 million unborn victims! The shedding of innocent blood has the express approval of many elected officials, including the president and his wife, and far too many professing Christians!

In spite of all the hard evidence that we continue to stir up the anger of a holy God and are on the very threshold of His wrath being poured out upon us in judgment, we are deceived into thinking we are quite OK as we wave our flags, do our Pledge of Allegiance thing from time to time, and shout out "God bless America." Politicians are especially good at the latter at the end of their speeches, especially when a hot election is taking place!

Be aware that calamities will increase and the U.S.A. will be more and more on the receiving end of humiliating happenings in different parts of the world so long as we refuse to meet the conditions of receiving special favor from God! How different from those times of decades ago when the United States was a nation held in high regard and its flag was respected around the world -- this was at the end of WW II, the last "unconditional surrender" victory ever won by our republic. Starting with Korea it was all down hill as we chose to "negotiate" an end to conflicts due mainly to politicians deciding they would write new rules to warfare!

Read again the statement made by Ezekiel the prophet -- do you see anything familiar that is disturbingly up to date?

"Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the LORD your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the LORD your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the LORD your God: Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the country....." (read on for more - Deuteronomy 28:1-14).

"But it shall come to pass, if you do not obey the voice of the LORD your God, to observe carefully all His commandments and His statutes which I command you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you: Cursed shall you be in the city, and cursed shall you be in the country...." (read on for much more - Deuteronomy 28:15-68).