A Visit to Palin’s Church

You will not want to miss Newsweek‘s profile of Sarah Palin’s faith and her church. Among other things, the article says,

‘Palin has said she was baptized in the Roman Catholic church. As a teenager, she began attending the Pentecostal Assemblies of God church in Wasilla and was baptized there by the founding pastor, Paul Riley. Todd Stafford, an associate pastor at Wasilla Assembly of God, says Palin often publicly thanks Riley–now nearly 80 and still working as a prison chaplain–for bringing her to Jesus when she visits the church. She attended that Pentecostal church until she was 38 years old, when she switched to Wasilla Bible Church, saying she preferred the children’s ministries there.

‘Pentecostalism is one of the fastest growing branches of Christianity in the world, and the Assemblies of God is one of the largest Pentecostal denominations in the country, claiming 1.6 million members. Pentecostals are generally characterized by a strict adherence to moral codes–no tobacco, no alcohol, no social dancing, no sex outside of marriage–and by their belief that the Holy Spirit bestows upon some the gift of “speaking in tongues,” a reference to Acts 2: “And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost and began to speak with other tongues.” A spokeswoman for the McCain-Palin campaign has said that Palin attends many churches and does not consider herself to be Pentecostal.’



Many of you are watching the Presidential election very closely and will appreciate the heads-up that I am about to give to you. There is a website that compiles all the latest polling data on the race for president (and other races as well). It’s a one-stop shop for all the hard stats that you will need. It’s called RealClearPolitics.com, and it is fast becoming the gold standard for political junkies. I’ve been using it since 2004, and I think it’s very helpful. This is just an FYI for those of you who may not be aware of this site already.

Here’s the link for polling on the presidential race. One item of note: Even after the Democrat National Convention last week and Obama’s very effective acceptance speech, the race remains a statistical dead-heat as of September 1. See below.

Monday, September 01








Obama 49, McCain 48

Obama +1



Rasmussen Tracking

Obama 49, McCain 46

Obama +3




Obama 46, McCain 44, Nader 4, Barr 2

Obama +2




Doug Wilson on “bed-wetting evangelicals”

Doug Wilson comments on the effects of McCain’s VP choice. In the process he has some hard-hitting words for “evangelicals” willing to vote for Obama:

‘All the early returns indicate that this has moved discontented evangelicals from “stay at home mad” voters or “hold your nose” voters to enthusiasts. I am not counting here the bedwetting evangelicals who were willing to support Obama, the most radical pro-death candidate to ever reach the national stage. I am not counting them because they don’t count. Among real evangelicals, the kind who read their Bibles, the response to Palin has been striking. As I read the responses from various directions, I can only describe it, in terms of its impact, as an electrifying choice. Think about it. McCain has picked a stridently pro-life, devout Christian evangelical as his running mate. There is nothing else he could have done to mobilize conservative Christians for this election, and he decided to do it.’

Wilson says that “evangelicals” who are willing to vote for Obama are immature (“bed-wetters”), they don’t read their Bibles, and they aren’t really evangelical. I know that many will dispute Wilson’s analysis, but I think he’s right in at least one respect. There is a great worldview difference between “evangelicals” who think overturning Roe is a transcendent moral issue and those that don’t. I wish more were in the first category rather than the latter.


College Football Gameday: Davids & Goliaths

Today is the opening weekend of college football, and it has been a battle of the Davids vs. the Goliaths. Every year in the first week of NCAA football, the power-conference teams square off against puny-conference teams so that the power-conference teams can have a warm-up game before their season really begins. And every year, one or more power-conference teams learn that puny-conference teams are not coming out to play a warm-up game. They are playing for keeps. Continue Reading →


‘Fatuous Suck-upping’ on Cable News

In two recent posts (here, here), I noted the unhidden bias of cable news coverage of the Democrat National Convention. I don’t think any of the major cable news networks were innocent in this regard, but MSNBC in particular was particularly overt last week.

Peggy Noonan went on MSNBC yesterday morning and light-heartedly chided MSNBC’s coverage. She called their coverage “fatuous suck-upping.” By the end of it, she had the two anchors (Joe Scarborough and Mika Brezinski) doubled over in laughter.


(HT: Mark Finkelstein)


Russell Moore’s Two-fer

Two items in the news today are related to Russell Moore and are worthy of note. First, The Wall Street Journal features an interview with Moore on adoption and his forthcoming book Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches. It’s a great article, and you should take a look.

Second, Senator John McCain announced that Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin would be his vice-presidential running mate. Moore predicted Palin as McCain’s pick exactly one month ago. Prescient indeed. Moore out pundited the professional pundits on this one.


My Take on Obama’s Speech

On Thursday night, Barack Obama accepted the Presidential nomination from the Democrat Party. The speech that he delivered was powerful and sounded positively Aaron Sorkin-esque (I’ve seen “The American President” many times and heard the echoes). I have to believe that the average American watching this speech was deeply moved, and that’s what saddens me. Here’s why.

Obama warned against making “a big election about small things.” And no doubt the genuflecting media will agree with Obama that issues like “abortion” and “gay marriage” are small things about which citizens should no longer trouble their political consciences. Sadly, there are many “evangelicals” who are helping Obama make that case.

As a result of this speech, the average citizen will be moved indeed—moved further away from concern about the unborn and further away from concern about the fundamental building block of society, the family. These are the “small” things that Obama encouraged citizens to forget about. Many will. Many already have.

I was struck how news anchors and analysts lost all objectivity in their coverage of this speech. Andrea Mitchell was openly weeping on MSNBC. For many minutes immediately following the speech, the cameras were kept away from Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann, who looked to have been composing themselves after crying. On CNN, Wolf Blitzer spoke about how “blessed” he was to be a part of this event. Even Patrick Buchanan was gushing. Who can compete with that kind of emotion? Not the Republicans next week. That’s for sure.

This was the best worst speech I’ve ever heard. That’s what makes it so dangerous.


Roe v. Wade Must Be Destroyed

Amen to James Kushiner‘s recent post on the Touchstone blog. I couldn’t have said it better myself. Read below.

I’ve been watching this phenomenon now for several years: Christians reassessing their engagement with politics and their views of candidates and the parties, nuancing their pro-life and pro-family views so that their no longer “just” about abortion and “gay marriage.” Similiar nuancing seems to be at play when it comes to some basic Christian doctrines. . . Continue Reading →


Media Bias and the Mess at MSNBC

If the Fox News Channel has the reputation as the “conservative” wing of the cable news outlets, then MSNBC has certainly become the known as the “liberal” one. No other personality on MSNBC personifies this reputation more than Keith Olbermann, one of MSNBC’s lead anchors covering the Democratic Convention. Continue Reading →


Radio Debate with the Pastor of IBC

On Monday I wrote about Irving Bible Church (IBC) and their elders’ recent decision to allow a woman to fill their pulpit. On Monday evening, I debated IBC’s pastor Andy McQuitty on the topic. The discussion occurred on my good friend Barry Creamer’s radio program “Live from Criswell.”

If you are interested in hearing the discussion, you can listen to it below or download it here.


I think you’ll find that this discussion leaves much to be desired in one very important sense. There just wasn’t enough time to talk about everything that needed to be talked about. But that’s just the nature of the beast in a one-hour radio program. In any case, I was grateful for the opportunity to address this very important issue on the air with Barry and Andy.


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