Onward Christian Soldier – A Tribute to Jeff Ziegler

March 5, 2012

The Church Universal has only two divisions.

  1. The Church Militant – Ecclesia Militans – are those Christians living on earth. They are the Christian militia who struggle against sin, the flesh, the devil and “… the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12).
  2. The Church Triumphant – Ecclesia Triumphans – are those Christians who are in Heaven. Although progressive sanctification takes place through this struggle on earth, those who pass on to be present with the Lord are made perfect “in the twinkling of an eye” (1 Corinthians 15:52).

As much as anyone I have ever known, Jeff Ziegler was a man who understood the meaning of the Church Militant. On Tuesday, February 28, 2012, Jeff became part of the Church Triumphant. He has been relieved of all earthly struggle and has been made perfect in Christ.

Jeff had suffered a cerebellar aneurysm in late 2009 and had been recovering from what is certain death in about 97 percent of cases. Doctors called his recovery late December of that year a “Christmas miracle.” Last week, Jeff suffered a heart attack while doing work at the Ohio State House. This was apparently unrelated to the earlier episode.

I first met Jeff when he was a speaker in our church, The Boston Worship Center, in 1987. A group of us took him on a “revival tour” of northern New England visiting several of the churches where a hero in the faith, George Whitefield, had preached. Jeff later traveled to England and Scotland and was able to preach in one of the pulpits frequented by Whitefield. In the 25 years I knew him, Jeff was a man driven by a vision for Revival and Reformation.

He went through quite a theological evolution in his lifetime. However, in all my dealings with Jeff, he was always Jeff. In the early 1990s, after I came to Florida to work on The Forerunner. Jeff would contribute frequent articles, which I’ve posted links to below. Our phone calls often went on for a long time and covered every topic imaginable. Jeff had a huge impact on my thinking as a young Christian involved in full-time missionary and evangelistic work. I saw him whenever he came to Florida and visited Cleveland for two conferences he organized. Jeff was always very gracious, yet direct when he needed to be. For example, he used to call me when I was doing print version of The Forerunner to give me names of donors that were generous with him. He did that without my solicitation just trying to help me.

Jeff took a role in leading several organizations throughout Ohio for the purpose of direct action in reforming culture and politics. One of the former members of his church recently described him as “a gentleman of the first order … he lived what he believed, a rare commodity in 2012.”

He later took part in video productions I produced, including God’s Law and Society and the following clip as part of a World Changers Seminar on the Capitol Mall in Washington D.C.

One of the hallmarks of Jeff’s preaching is that he always threw his whole heart and being into his message, speaking with the same forceful tone and volume no matter if it were a crowd of hundreds or less than a handful of people in a small seminar. We recently worked together on the Statesman Global Initiatives website and blog. Jeff’s most recent book, Republic Restored, was accepted into the Library of Congress.

Recent years had more than their share of personal trials and medical turmoil that took a toll on this soldier for Christ, but he can rejoice that he has joined the Church Triumphant.


God’s Law and Society: An Interview with Jeff Ziegler

Question:– Didn’t the Apostle Paul say that we are no longer under law but under grace? If so, then what is the use of the Law of God under the New Covenant?

Jeff Ziegler: The notion of being “under grace and not law” is something not to be underestimated or undermined. But what is it Paul is saying? We are not saved nor justified by law. We are justified by faith in Christ. It is His finished work alone that secures our redemption. However, how is it that we are to live our lives? Is it by every whim or every fancy of our own wicked heart — a deceitful heart that we cannot know? The Law of God has not passed away in terms of our guide for life in godliness. Jesus himself said that “not one jot nor tittle will pass away” until all things are fulfilled. Christ as the fulfillment of the law gives us the grace, which is divine almighty power effective on our behalf. He gives us the grace to live according to the law not to transgress the law. We see in Romans 6:1, “Shall we sin that grace may abound? God forbid!” And how is it we know that we sin? We have an unchanging standard in God’s Law.

Now granted, there have been portions of Old Testament Law that have been changed or nullified. For example, the sacrificial system is no longer needed and is repugnant to God because Christ is the final and last sacrifice. The dietary laws have been modified and changed. But the moral law is still binding. For example, the laws against bestiality in the Old Testament are no where repeated in the New. Yet no one will say that bestiality is somehow now under grace. It’s still sin. The ideas and notions of our conduct are in the Law of God. They are not options. They are commands. They have not been nullified or abridged in any way by Christ’s finished work. In fact, now that law is written upon our heart and our mind and we are given grace to follow hard after them in a way that was not possible in the old dispensation.

Of course, Christianity is ultimately personal and intimate. We come by the finished work of Jesus Christ into a living, real and vital relationship with God. The creation can touch the Creator — the Christ. That brings joy unspeakable and full of glory — there can be no doubt. But then what? This personal, real and vital relationship must be manifest. The Great Commission says that we are to be a witness unto all nations. We are to teach those nations all the things that Christ did depict and declare. That means that we are to enforce, declare and disciple the nations, every tribe, every kindred, every ethnic grouping under and according to God’s Law.

The idea that religion is only personal is actually heretical. That’s an ancient heresy called Gnosticism. They said that the material world was evil and the unseen world was innately spiritual. That’s why so many Christians in that era, and even today, have not had a proper view of sexuality, the family, the role of the Church, their role in society, and even the idea of work and creating wealth. They think the material world is evil. And therefore, they must cultivate material monastic ideas to be closer to Christ. But the idea of being close to Christ, the chosen fast of God, is to go out and set at liberty the captives. So whether it is preaching the Gospel to men so that they may be redeemed. Or whether that means going into the civil realm as a politician and declaring the Crown Rights of Jesus Christ there and ruling diligently according to the Law of God. Or whether that means being a home schooling mom and raising a generation of champions for Jesus Christ. At every realm, Christ the expression of the Gospel, His life is real and vital, and therefore it must have an outward flow.


Question:– Was the New Testament Church really a “New Testament” Church as we think of it today? In what ways was their situation different from ours?

Jeff Ziegler: The battle in America is between two ideas or notions and it is the Lordship of Jesus Christ versus the authority of the state or “Caesar.” And that’s really always been the question. Even in Christ’s day, in the Gospels we see that the issue is always framed around: What allegiance do we owe to Caesar? What are our duties? And what allegiance do we owe to Christ?

Romans 13 gives us the parameter by which we are to judge our actions in this way. Romans 13 declares what kind of civil magistrate or elected official is endorsed by God. This kind of civil magistrate be he a monarch, a king, a parliamentarian, a congressmen, a president, must affirm God’s law, punish wickedness, and affirm and reward righteousness. That is the kind of civil magistrate we are to obey. However, if the civil magistrate becomes tyranny to God’s ways and in fact punishes righteousness and rewards wickedness, by virtue of their call to obey God’s Law-Word in every jot and tittle, by His grace, Christians must be resolved to resist tyranny and to stand against such injustice.

While there was no implicit call to resist the tyranny of Rome by Paul, the fact that he gave us that filter in Romans 13 actually was a defense of the civil disobedience of the early church. The very preaching of the Gospel, the serving of Christ as the Lord of the nations, as He being God alone and no the Caesar cult, that was an act of civil disobedience. That’s the reason why the Christians were persecuted and hounded and sent to the catacombs and put into the coliseums in the fierce competitions and the persecutions of Imperial Rome. It was the fact that they were not obeying the Caesar cult. So Romans 13 is a defense of the Gospel, but when we act upon the Gospel, when we preach the Gospel, when we live the Gospel, it is inevitably going to bring us in conflict with Caesar — or the state that would be God.

When we look throughout the book of Acts and we see the Apostles, the deacons, and simple Christians being brought before civil magistrates giving an account for their faith and the Apostle Paul is one of these. And the question comes down to: When it is Christ versus Caesar, do we obey God and His Law or man? That is the issue between Christ and Caesar and on that there can be no neutrality, if we consistently live the Gospel, preach the Gospel, demonstrate the Gospel. Even the idea of rescuing babies — the early church were taking abandoned babies that were left under the bridge abutment to die by Roman paganism. They were taking them as their own and adopting them and raising them in the faith. That was against Roman law. A true Gospel expression will always bring us into conflict, not with the civil magistrate that God ordains, but with the civil magistrate who seeks to dethrone God and become God himself.


Question:– Can we really legislate the biblical standards of morality on non-Christians? The non-Christian doesn’t even believe in the Bible, so how can we even talk about building a society based on the Law of God?

Jeff Ziegler: The idea that we can be governed by many moralities, or pluralism, is really a myth. We are either in obedience to God’s Law or we are in opposition to God’s Law. Now there is a concern in a mechanistic sense that we are going to impose God’s Law through an ecclesiocracy, that is a rule through the clergy, or through some dictatorship as in an Islamic nation. That is a misinterpretation of biblical Law. Biblical Law when it regards civil polity, is the ultimate decentralized government. Scripture does not support nor trust dictatorships. The whole idea behind God’s judgment at the Tower of Babel was that man was coming together. He had all of his strength in one central location and had a global government. And God by once stroke of the hand decentralized that government and turned the languages against one another and formed nation-states from that one expression of a global tyranny.

That is the paradigm of the liberal. Liberals and humanists think in terms of statism. They must have the state to coerce and to force their ideas upon the people. They don’t have another way of thinking. The state is messiah for them. When they look upon us and see our ideas and notions, that we are fighting for biblical law being applied to all of life, they can’t think in any other terms. They think it’s going to be a top-down theocratic, oligarchic or monarchic system. Nothing could be further from the truth. It’s not revolution or political dictatorships that we place our faith in, rather it’s the power of conversion. We are converting literally millions to the idea that God’s Law is supreme. We see these revolutionary trends in home schooling, in ecclesiastical reform, and in the civil realm as we elect expressly and explicitly Christian politicians — not simple neo-conservatives — but Christians who acknowledge God’s Law.

As we see this, one family at a time, one church at a time, one community at a time, one state at a time, America will be converted. It will be through conversion and not revolution that we see this great reordering and restructuring and reanchoring of our society to God’s Law. Now there will always be those who are autonomous rebels, who trample underfoot the Son of God, who count the blood of the covenant to be unholy. They will always seek to overthrow God’s rule. In the family, we see it with divorce and abortion. We see it in the church with ecclesiastical anarchists, those who will not be governed by sound doctrine. We see it in civil states. But only if they resort to violent means to overthrow godly order would they be suppressed. But they would not be suppressed by clergymen, but by a decentralized federal republic.


Question:– How did Christian philosophy influence our form of civil government?

Jeff Ziegler: There is great consternation and controversy about what Christ’s Lordship actually means in the real world. Most Christians will not argue with the fact that He does rule our lives. He is the ruler, the Lord, the King of their families and their church. But much beyond that, the idea of Christ’s Lordship begins to fall on deaf ears. The retort you often hear revolves around the time period when Christ is before Pilate’s inquisition and says, “My kingdom is not of this world.” Let’s put this in context however. Christ was not saying that His kingdom was not manifest in the world. What he was saying to Pilate “My kingdom does not gain it’s authority from Rome or the Sanhedrin. My authority comes from on high.” Pilate understood this. The irony is that the pagan tyrant understood, but Christians don’t today. So the authority of Christ’s kingdom is not of this world, but nonetheless, the kingdom has invaded this civil realm, the family realm, “the earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof.” Every aspect of society is touched by the kingdom of God.

Now how does this work practically? If every time we’ll confess, “Every knee will bow” before Christ, that He is the Lord, that monarchs, kings, state representatives, congressmen, and presidents must bow their knee before God. By what standard will they bow the knee? Yes, it gets back to God’s Law. The kingdom has no place in terms of seeking approval or legitimacy here in the earth. It doesn’t need the president’s approval to exist. It’s authority comes from the other world. And therefore it is superior and higher. But the kingdom is manifest in the world and Christ’s Lordship is manifest in the world in the civil realm, in the family, in every aspect of society, economics, science etc. Christ’s Lordship has the claim.

We talk about the crown rights of Jesus Christ. By virtue of the finished work of Jesus Christ, He has the right to rule. He has the keys to the kingdom of heaven. He has reconciled all things in heaven and in earth, the visible and the invisible, the living and the dead. He rules over all. Christ’s kingdom is comprehensive in scope and absolute in its authority.


Question:– Were the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution drafted to uphold the moral laws of God — or were they Deistic humanist documents? If they were Christian documents, where have we gone so far off track?

Jeff Ziegler: There is no question that our Founding Fathers were an amalgamation of some Deistic humanists, Puritan thought as well as high Anglicanism, all mixed together and jostling for position in the context of our founding federal documents. However, there was an acknowledgment of man’s overriding depravity, the idea that absolute power corrupts absolutely was not a foreign idea to these men. In looking at the Hebrew Commonwealth in its decentralized forms of government, our founding fathers in their wisdom, set about to create a system where there would be checks and balances against this idea of absolute power, government by man, tyrannical carnality, with three branches of government, all of which are supposed to work to counter balance the other. At least theoretically, they would keep in check any tyrannical impulse.

Unfortunately, that assumes these three institutions are appealing to God’s Law. No matter how good the system, unless it is under the aegis and covering of God’s Law, any system can revert to tyranny. It can be the tyranny of the majority of paganism, of humanism. Even in Israel, in the Hebrew Commonwealth, when they began to apostatize and fall away from God’s Law, what did they begin to cry out for? — a tyrant, a king “like all he other nations.” They paid the price for it in terms of wars, tyrannical suppression and taxation, and ultimately in the division of their nation in two separate entities and then the invasion of foreign pagan powers to bring them under the enslavement of their anti-God ways. So they ultimately paid the price and we will too if we don’t turn back to God’s Law.

When we can compare biblical law versus natural law, scripture is the final immutable authority on every subject of which it speaks. It is binding not only on the regenerate that is the Christian, but the unregenerate alike. You’ll either are following God’s Law and prospering accordingly, or you’ll be broken by it. It doesn’t change. So whether you acknowledge it or not, it exists, and all men are judged by its standards.

Now there is certainly natural revelation. God has made himself known in the creation — there is evidence of his creation everywhere. But ultimately it is not evidence that man needs. It’s conviction of sin and to have his miscreant depraved nature arrested. The role of the civil magistrate is to keep a biblical and sound order, to prosper the righteous and to punish wickedness. You can’t do that by natural revelation or natural law. Now it’s true that in a godly or predominantly godly society, men will understand natural law in a way that mimics or comes close to biblical law. We see that in the embryonic stages of our nation. However, natural law can be co-opted and pirated by corrupt alien and humanistic worldviews. Natural law can be interpreted from many different angles. In so doing, morality become relativistic.

However, that cannot be said of the Ten Commandments because not only do we have the explicit injunction “Thou shalt not kill” (or murder) or “Thou shalt not commit adultery.” But we have case laws which interpret that law and how it is to be administered in the civil realm. So biblical law is superior because it is defined revelation. It is specific and applicable.


Question:– What about the “establishment of religion” clause in the U.S. Constitution? Doesn’t the U.S. Constitution forbid the display of religion in the civil sphere?

Jeff Ziegler: The main differences between the Roman Empire under the Caesar cult and the early Church’s reaction to it and Christians today in a constitutional republic, despite the fact that we’ve lost so many of our freedoms, we still have remedy at law to begin to work within the process to restore and reconstruct our nation along biblical lines — simply to restore it to what it once was. Under the Roman authority, Christians did not have the means to defend themselves. Christians did not have the right to an appeal. But we have that process here. We have the right to defend ourselves. We have a Constitution. We have a Bill of Rights. We have elected representatives that we can work with, lower civil magistrates that we can work alongside, convert to the faith and even elect those who are explicitly Christian to these lower realms and then begin to work up into the governmental powers that be.

Reconstruction and reformation is a ground-up idea. The idea of seizing control of Washington D.C., of the Congress and presidency, is hopelessly naive. We have to reconstruct families. We have to reconstruct churches. We have to begin to work at the local level. We have to develop regional zones of kingdom influence. Within that realm, we are exhibiting, testifying, and working for the Crown Rights of Jesus Christ. So in that realm Christians have a greater hope and an easier road to hoe than the early Christians did versus the imperial power of Rome.

It’s not as if this is a new thing that we are talking about. Our nation was founded under these strictures. If you go to any of the early colonial charters, the Fundamental Charters of Carolina, for example, there was a test for Christian orthodoxy for all civil magistrates and even land owners that they had to adhere to before they could be a recognized and vibrant part of the social fabric. We are not talking about anything that has not been done. It was done and accomplished in our nation and prior to the War Between the States, America prospered under such a mandate.

So we are not talking about Ayatollah Khomeini’s Iran. We are not talking about Islamic law. We’re talking about biblical law. If we go back and we look at the Commonwealth of the Hebrew Republic, before the kings, we see a very decentralized system of government. Many people have the notion that Moses was a dictator, but that was only in the initial stages of the Exodus, which was primarily a military operation. Soon after that we see that Moses was going to wear away the people and God not only gave 70 elders, but princes and captains of fifties and tens. So you had this incredibly decentralized system of government among the tribes of Israel. People could say it was inefficient, but the whole idea was a check and balance against man’s depravity. We modeled our constitutional republic after the Hebrew Commonwealth. That’s what we’re talking about here.


Question:– What about the idea that the government should be neutral and should recognize that we live in a democratic, pluralistic society?

Jeff Ziegler: Probably the greatest evidence of humanism’s collapse and the reactionary statist hand being felt is in the former monopoly that we call public education. Public education is no such thing; it’s government indoctrination. After all, whether it be Hitler, Stalin or Mao, tyrants always try to grab hold of the next generation to perpetuate their rebellion. The public school system on a number of different fronts is beginning to collapse — academically, economically because people are no longer voting for levies, and because it is becoming more centralized in Washington D.C. Centralization is never an answer. Any business man could tell you that if the public school elitists definitely wanted to succeed, they would not want to centralize, but that is what they are doing. As these things begin to happen, more and more individuals leave the public school system either for parochial schools, private schools or for home school.

The correct reason for home schooling is not simply the quality of education in the government run school system. It is to say that the government has no authority whatever over you children., You are the one who is ultimately responsible.

As more have home schools, as more move to the parochial schools what is happening is a literal depopulation of the public system. Laws are being enacted at the state and federal level to destroy the freedom the parents have over their children. Home schoolers think that they have fought most of the legal battles in the 1980s. Actually they are going to see that their own success is going to breed a greater backlash by the state against their efforts. Ultimately, the state believes, whether at the local municipality, state or federal government, that they own the children. And that is where the great backlash of a collapsing humanism is going to be felt. It is going to take courage, conviction and sound theology by Christian parents not only to resist the tyranny, but to fight for justice.


Question:– Wouldn’t a Christian Republic run according to God’s Law become oppressive to non-Christians?

Jeff Ziegler: Freedom, liberty, has one chief end, and that is to advance Christ’s rule, His reign, over all the nations and all the realms of the earth. Liberty without the sure anchor of Christian orthodoxy is really a Greco-Roman idea. It leads either on one hand to unfettered licentiousness and moral anarchy, or on the other, to a paternalistic tyranny. Because when you have moral anarchy, the state will move to suppress that anarchy. Without Christian orthodoxy, the hope of freedom and liberty for which our Founding Fathers fought is elusive at best.

When autonomous man seeks liberty from God, his first action is to revolt against God’s law in order to fulfill the lusts of his flesh. Thereafter this period of anarchy, the messianic state seeks to suppress this moral anarchy. At that point, you have tyranny. You have the liberal or the right wing imposing their own morality apart from God. And so the whole idea of liberty is connected intrinsically to the idea of God’s moral law. Liberty apart from God’s law is an impossibility. There is no neutrality on this issue. It’s either God’s law or chaos. And if we have chaos, we will have tyranny. God has designed all governments, whether they are fascist, communist or democratic republics, to gravitate towards stability. The only question is will it be the governance of God’s Law or communism or fascism or any other man-centered humanistic ideal. So man can have his licentious, lust-filled day in the sun. But he will pay a price in the ultimate loss of all freedom.

It is no accident that apostasy and heresy in the church and civil tyranny among nations walk hand in hand. The orthodox expression of Christianity is the final guarantor of our freedoms. And so if heresy and infidelity to orthodoxy gains ascendancy within the church, it will eventually work its way out into the civil sphere. People often ask me why we have such oppressive government in America today. And my answer is: Don’t point to Washington D.C., because, while it is Sodom on the Potomac, the real problem lies with the pulpits of America. Unless we affirm Christian orthodoxy and the resulting freedoms it has birthed and guaranteed throughout the years, we will continue to be enslaved by our statist masters.


Question:– What can Christians begin to do from a practical standpoint to begin to rebuild our nation according to the standard of the Law of God? What would a Christian America look like?

Jeff Ziegler: The way that the state attempts to supplant God is to intrude upon the God-given rights of personal property and the pursuit of happiness — the things which are codified in our founding documents. This is true of communism, fascism, socialism and even a democratic republic. When the state begins to tax property, when it says that property which is given to you by God is now subject to their rule and their reign. You no longer own that property. You have become a serf through property taxes and income taxes. God gives you the power to get wealth. He is not the disburser of wealth, but gives you the power to get wealth to honor God. When they begin to tax income, property and things of this nature, they are intruding upon rights that God has given you. If they curtail your speech regarding the Gospel. We see that around abortion mills in these “buffer zones” where you cannot preach the Gospel or declare God’s Law. These notions to control the freedom to worship God are all signs of tyranny.

But the good news is this. Tyranny only goes so far and so long before it begins to burn out. First, because of its own corruption. Second, because there is only so much money and so much property to tax. Eventually, this insatiable appetite for more has to be curtailed by simple arithmetic. In America today, we have reached the point where moral corruption, infidelity to Gods law in the civil realm, humanism as a life assistance in the collegiate realm among the intellectual elite, Darwinism, all of these notions are coming to the end of their political and social life span. In fact, I can hear the death rattle in the throat of humanism. They know it. This is in one way encouraging, but in another way it leads us to the most dangerous period. Whenever these systems begin to collapse, men who have tied their fortunes, their lives, their reputations to these corrupted and fallen paradigms become very vicious and violent.

We see this in the old Soviet Union. When the Soviet Union began to collapse, it was uneven. We see anarchy, murder, the Russian Mafia. Yet there could be more political tumult there and in Eastern Europe. We don’t see the end of this yet. The same thing could happen in America. When humanism ultimately collapses and Christians rise to the fore, we could see things like the break-up and realignment of the United States. What is happening in the Soviet Union could certainly happen here. Those are dangerous times when one system is collapsing and another system arises. My great hope is that there is sufficient reformation and reconstruction in the church so that when the paradigm of humanism ultimately collapses, we will be able in the crisis to fill that vacuum. Otherwise, we’ll exchange one tyranny for another.


Jeff Ziegler: The Reformation Worldview

On September 3rd, 2000, a few Christian activists and scholars gathered on the Mall in Washington D.C. to conduct a day-long seminar on “world changing.” Exactly one year later, terrorists attacked Washington and New York. It became apparent that America must fight a long and costly was on two fronts. While international terrorism is being fought on one front, Christians activists must wage a war against a more subtle attack by anti-Christian “terrorists” within.

This seminar has become more relevant in light of the events of 9/11.

We offer this seminar to the next generation of world changers who can be used of God to turn our nation back from humanist domination.

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SGI Resolution on Birth Control

February 11, 2012

Narrative for The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)

Whereas: The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is national in scope, and under consideration of the historic and legal precedent of specific portions of the same act being administered by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, the recent decision to force purchase and distribution of birth control measures and procedures upon churches, hospitals and other non-profit organizations otherwise opposed through theological construct, personal conviction, or statement of purpose is a dangerous form and pattern, against Constitutional guarantees of freedom of religion.

Resolved: That the (    )* House of Representatives now declares that The President of the United States Barack Obama, together with HHS director Kathleen Sebelius now rescind these same onerous requirements and direct impingements on all medical, church, and other non-profit health organizations who are non-aligned with mandatory birth control, forced sterilization, or abortion on demand.

Jeff Ziegler

440-413-1264 ceejz@ncweb.com

President: The Continental Group and Statesman Global Initiatives

www.continentalgroupconsulting.com

www.s-g-i.org

* Note: ( ) to be filled by the name of each state’s respective body.


PLAY BALL!

June 1, 2009

By Jeff Ziegler
 
The great dynasties of Major League Baseball have always maintained supremacy of the ball diamond through the development of supportive minor league teams more commonly referred to as the farm system. When properly supported, the farm team – minor league organization, cultivates young talent that can be employed for the “big leagues” when the need arises or the position has opened. This is an inherently”bottom-up” approach which in the long term, provides a particular franchise with stability and success. While the age of “free agency” has modified this approach (using large sums of cash to buy a players contract), the farm-system comprised of home grown talent is still the dominant theme for long term stability and annual competiveness.
 
In the political world success is measured in the terms of victories, from which the projection of power determines policy. Even if one desires to decentralize and restrict political power, such polices must at some point be enacted from a position of authority. In order to achieve that influence one must field candidates, win races, and control political parties at the local level. Unfortunately, most politically active Christians think in terms that cripple any long term development of local “talent” which can then be called upon to cogently represent the claims of Christ in the “big leagues” of civil discourse and policy making.
 
In America, politically active Christians are eerily uniform in their reactive response to negative and sinful national trends. They are very good at the point of protest and can marshal grass roots outrage on the national stage. But as SGI oft declares “outrage” rarely wins battles! So even when Christians are victorious at blunting a particular onerous policy, such obsessions with all things national brings a woeful neglect to the gateways of political influence at the local level. Therefore we are always left to react to what the “bad guys” are doing instead of making them react to us. You can’t play defense all the time and expect to take ground!
 
This negligence ensures that explicitly Christian thinking candidates are not developed. Hence; the saints are nearly always left outside the political process, first at the local level and then in the larger arenas. Tough we do become expert “rock throwers”! Local political farm systems support the development of national candidates. Where do you think Sarah Palin came from? Was she groomed by a cabal of “New World Order” thinkers? Hardly! She started out as a school board activist! Hence patience over panic, planning over reaction, and intelligent action over protest wins the day!
 
Yet, most Christians hold to a “top-down” approach to political thought that deleteriously ignores grass-roots foundations. Result? The saints are marginalized as protestors with little if any bite. Indeed, if I had a dime for every sincere saint who said something akin to “I don’t care about this local stuff … look at what Obama is doing to the nation” I would be a very wealthy man indeed.
 
When you add the varied conspiracy theories to the milieu, the saints are at a huge disadvantage. “Success” is deemed impossible in that even if some measured advance is noted “the conspiracy” either real or imagined will succeed in thwarting any meaningful advance. Hence local politics is seen as naive and without hope for promotion. Yet it will be local politics, state sovereignty issues, governors and business leaders that will determine the outcome of the Obama years, not Federal obsessions, international cabals, or elite effete billionaires!
 
A Dominion Attitude
 
A dominion attitude rejects defeatist notions and embraces long term biblical strategies which ensure a “little by little” conversion or defeat of entrenched political adversaries. Some of these strategies include:
 
1) Training explicitly Christian candidates in issues of civil polity, campaigns, and theology. This is paramount! You can’t beat something with nothing!
 
2) Building campaign organizations that are not dependent on the party. That is building a self-sustaining entity at every level of campaign involvement. THIS IS IMPERATIVE! More Christian candidates have lost races due to their naive dependence on state party machines than any other single factor. The machine is NOT on your side! No exceptions! Build your own base, over successive elections and watch how effective you become as a power broker for Constitutional causes!
 
3) Training precinct committeemen for party service. Concentration is on trained Christians who look to control the executive committee and various other committees (finance, public relations, candidate recruitment etc.) with an eventual Christian party chairman that takes seriously his mission to win back and advance basic Christian cultural ideals.
 
4)  Running races at local and state levels. That is zoning boards, city council, county offices, health boards, school boards, state representative etc. Start with the achievable and LEARN!
 
5)  Involvement in vital peripheral organizations such as the Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Clubs, or start your own think-tank!
 
6)  Discipleship of existing civil magistrates.
 
7)  Committees of correspondence and phone/email/fax/blogging networks to bring public pressure to bear on various issues.
 
8)  Using antithesis both in campaigns and marketing to help define the battlefield in the community. Politics is war by another means! Grow up! Remember Jesus called the scribes and Pharisees “whitewashed tombs and vipers”.
 
9) After one local county party is sufficiently controlled, branching out into the contiguous counties within the same congressional district.
 
10) Encourage Christian independents to also run for non-declarative races (city council) and so as to raise up an alternative group of candidates that can assert pressures from outside the  main parties.
 
11) Start your own business! Especially in an age when entrepreneurism is frowned upon by the Obamaites, what better way to resist and prosper than to start your own business!

Church Recruitment
 
The average church in America has membership of approximately 190 people. If each church represented on the SGI mailing list were able to activate 10% of their parishioners toward service in the civic realm, a great political force would arise. Now many a churchman decries political involvement. They claim we are not “saved” through politics! To which I agree! But one must ask the question for what end did Christ save us? Certainly he saves us from our sins and sanctifies us for an eternity spent with Him. Nevertheless we are not placed in this life to take up space, but to press His claims in every sphere of life. Politics is of importance because in this age it has become the chief battleground, the place of contest and the great engine of brutish state power. Our involvement in the body politic will be to make poltics of less import through limited government power, greater personal freedom and responsibility, and finally emphasis on family renewal in Christ. In the end we work for a world free from Caesar that we may be free in Christ!


The “Wholesome Medicine” of Barak Obama PART II – Taking on CMS

March 16, 2009

Jeffrey A. Ziegler President: SGI

CONTACT US at www.s-g-i.org

Once again President Barak Obama has filled the nation’s airwaves with whining pontifications on the so-called healthcare crises. From his 2008 campaign to the present “healthcare summit” the same libertine dribble of state-run solutions to non-existent problems have belched from the belly of Obama’s leftist radicals. That the cost of healthcare continues to rise has little to do with any crises of market influences, but instead stems from the Fed’s original suppression of free enterprise in the creation of Medicare and Medicaid, and its resultant cost-shifting Ponzi schemes, derailed innovations, and the combined financial choke-hold these programs have had on American medicine. As former President Bush often stated, “ … Instead of bureaucrats, trial lawyers, and HMOs, we must put doctors, and nurses, and patients back in charge of American medicine.” We certainly agree! Unfortunately the current Obama-era regime at CMS (Center for Medicare Services) not only falls far short of these lofty ideals but is working to increase the size of CMS while stripping medical choice from rank and file consumers. The reach of CMS is surpassed only by the combined elements of the Pentagon!

The Economic “Big Picture”

Medicare is the greatest engine driving up the cost of healthcare! The problem with Medicare (CMS) is its sheer size and insulation from market forces. Alone, Medicare (CMS) comprises 49% of the entire US healthcare industry. (Under Obama CMS will grow to encompass all US healthcare!) CMS is among the least efficient of government agencies. It is often joked that the agency is the last refuge for former East German bureaucrats. Now if this were a privately owned concern, competition would eventually curb such inefficient behavior. But Medicare is big government! Their bad conduct, procedures, and policies are among the chief reasons for the escalating health care costs facing the nation! When you consider that the first wave of baby-boomers are now entering the system (2008) government dominance of healthcare will be out of control! (With or without Obamaism)

Remember that Medicare is an agency built on artificial pricing schemes and cost shifting and lags woefully behind in payment to doctors and providers. Additionally, when Medicare actually does get around to paying the providers, it has been doing so at ever decreasing rates (4-5% per year). Results? More and more providers are simply opting out of treating Medicare cases or real cost is passed on to non-Medicare business silos. For patients this means less access to healthcare and more cost. But now Obama wishes to bloat CMS into an ever increasing draconian master by coercively forcing all Americans into an already cancerous Leviathan. The results? As one surgeon remarked Medicare is not about healthcare but instead killing off the actuarially non-viable. In other words rationed care, less physician access, and no patient choice! The future for the elderly ill? “Hey, you’re going to die anyway . . . NO TREATMENT!”

Operation WHITECOAT Objectives:

Since 2005 we have worked with many patriotic and caring physicians to bring real market solutions to the nation. Dubbed OPERATION WHITECOAT our physicians are working to repulse the fascist solutions of state run healthcare!

We are working to gain an affirmative commitment and assent from CMS for non-risk Physician-Patient-Technology demonstrations that are driven by the true cost of the market and lay the ground-work for the outsourcing of the entire claim management system of Medicare. Second, we are advocating the development of a fast-pay system for the provider community coupled to real-time claims processing, fraud detection and predictive risk management. Third, we advocate for a consumer-choice benefit plan that shifts Medicare authority away from Federal control to regional, private entities. Fourth, our Provider Team WHITECOAT forms the nucleus for other providers to join with us in an ongoing effort. Finally, work toward a market driven, privatized CMS model. In other words OPERATION WHITECOAT and SGI are on a collision course with healthcare FASCISM!

What Operation WHITECOAT Doctors Represent

1. Deployment of a Fast Pay System
2. Reduction in CMS Administrative Costs and Development of Privatized Models
3. National Political Clout
4. Platform for Tort Reform
5. National Media Voice
6. Access to The White House and leading Senate and House members
7. Involvement in the Process to change CMS policy and Reduce Government Percentage of Health Economy
8. Creation of an Activistic Physician Movement with Cogent Leading Edge Ideas
9. Positive Pro-life, Pro-family Solutions

What Operation WHITECOAT Doctors Achieve Long Term

1. Developing regional CMS models and Eventual Market-Driven Models
2. Disengaging the Leviathan of Government from Healthcare
3. Lowering Costs and Increasing Reimbursements
4. Breaking the CMS Market Monopoly
5. Incentivizing the Best and Brightest to return to Healthcare
6. Greater Physician Political Prowess! (There’s a big difference between a protester and a policy maker!)
7. Greater Healthcare Choices
8. More Healthcare Dollars spent on Treatment
9. Rebuffing Cynical Defeatist Ideals through Concrete Measurable Successes
10. Ushering in a new “Golden Era” of Ethical Strapping American Healthcare

With doctors in the lead, once again SGI stands as the vanguard to repulse the national power grab of the Obama minions. Below you will find that Rep. Ron Paul kicked us off for our inaugural efforts. With men like Ron Paul we guarantee a fight all the way to the White House!

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The Battlefield: Free Commerce vs. Obamanation!

February 21, 2009

By Jeff Ziegler

Wealth Creation or Bailout?


In the early morning light of the 21st century, American business culture evidences an insidious infection marked by the symptom of what could be described as a fuzzy relational and communal malaise. This weepy sentimentality has dispossessed the will to win, a desire to beat the competition, and to emerge singularly victorious in commerce. Such relationalism values a second-rate socialistic business ethic over and against the rambunctious spirit of enterprise, competition, and intoxicating ale of triumph once common in our great nation. In essence, Sesame Street has usurped Wall Street and there are no winners or losers just the marvelous mediocrity of the mushy middle. Hence a reliance on Federal power, interventions, bail-outs and a host of other blunt force tyrannical instruments have become the vogue not only among government elites, but also the executive class.

I recall a consultation with one of my customers. At the time we were engaged in the development of an aggressive marketing plan that would propel his business to far greater visibility. Inherent in the plan was the defeat of one of his chief competitors whose product line while similar was nevertheless inferior. My client was appalled that I actually spoke in terms of defeating his competition. “He has a right to work too!” he exclaimed. I responded that his competitors right to work was not at issue, it was whether or not my client felt it was his responsibility to guarantee his rivals success. My man certainly wanted to win, but not completely. He wanted to prosper, but not too much. He had a vision for expansion, but not if it meant the vanquishing of lesser opponents. Such double-mindedness is the Keynesian primordial ooze from which Obamanation has spawned.

Now, in the midst of recession, is the time to redefine our current business environs in a more traditional light. A world of winning and losing, of struggle and vigor, and the hope of prosperity and greater personal freedom. Decisively, this generation has a cardinal opportunity to envision a new golden era of strapping American enterprise, to rebuff defeatist ideals, and replace them with time proven principles that will reinvigorate a business world-view of victory!

After all, “You can’t beat something with nothing.”

Worldview?

The importance of having a fully articulated world-life-view is paramount in any successful business venture. By worldview I mean a set of beliefs and presuppositions that govern your sense of reality or how things work in time and history. It’s never a question of worldview or no worldview, but only a question of whose worldview has gained the ascendancy in your life or vocation. Fascists, Communists, and Socialists have a worldview. Christians, Muslims, and Hindus have a worldview. Environmentalists have a worldview and capitalists have a worldview. Children have a worldview that is dramatically at odds with the worldview of adults. The concept itself is inescapable.

Most people are something of a composite of various views. Subconsciously they attempt to harmonize these sometimes desperate elements into something unique for them. The common refrain “It works for me…” has a certain merit. Unfortunately, such amalgams rarely work long term in that the smorgasbord of ideas that form an immature world-life-view are often in contradiction. Some like this “dynamic tension” and tend to ride their own shockwave enjoying a time of success until the inevitable breakdown takes place. It is precisely at the time of breakdown that unhealthy and non-productive notions often enter into the life of an entrepreneur or the management of given corporation. In other words without a well thought out sense of reality, of values, and of your place in the business world, your life may be easily hijacked to places you never intended to go. Remember, if you are not conscious of any particular worldview governing your life, someone, some institution, or some circumstance will cheerfully supply one for you. The question then will be whether or not such views find you successful in the marketplace or utterly miserable, lost, and groping for the reasons why.

The American Way

The American economic miracle is a three-century exercise in applied worldview. There is no question that America has long been the world dominant standard for prosperity. To illustrate, while consulting with a member of the British Parliament, it was remarked to me in a rather nonchalant manner, that Europeans are rich, but Americans are that much richer. This is true not only in terms of the sheer size of our economy, but the vast array of economic choices that are available to us. The question remains why are these things so? Why has America prospered so much and for so long even when saddled by more modern innovations such as the “welfare state” and the ever greater encroachments of government regulation and burdensome taxation? The answer again revolves around worldview and the practical applications, ethics, traditions, and tactics, which are derived from the same.

We have all heard of the “Puritan work ethic.” But what exactly does it mean? Is it simply a call to frugality and saving? Or was there something endemic to the embryonic American colonial period that helped shape a dynamic vision of prosperity? In other words what was the worldview that birthed the most prosperous and industrious people in the long history of the world?

The colonial period in America was a distinctly religious time. Christianity dominated New England and the basic worldview birthed by such convictions formed an economic ethos that exploded into unprecedented material prosperity and political freedom. The cornerstone of this worldview was a belief in the transcendent nature of God as the creator and governor of life. Under this belief system man created in God’s image was handed the earth to dominate and to become productive. This productivity and “fruitfulness” was to then be utilized for the expansion of Christianity and its message. The colonial “Puritan” understood this creator-god to have given gifts, talents, opportunities, and spiritual blessings to each of the faithful in order achieve prosperous ends. At no time was the Divine seen as the direct dispenser of wealth. Each individual was responsible to use whatever talents they had to achieve as much they could for a greater end. Therefore the average colonial American saw striving for mastery and victory in commerce as a matter of eternal weight and significance. The ideals of excellence, craftsmanship, the accumulation of wealth, of leaving an inheritance and building a family legacy, of material and territorial expansion, all were generated by this religious fervor. Indeed, all of life was considered a gift from God, and man had the responsibility to preserve, develop, and rule the creation.

As a consequence of this “divine imperative” to economic growth, a limited system of government in the form of the American Republic was developed that would safely guarantee the personal freedoms needed to enjoy private property, work, and productivity, and in the parlance of Jefferson; ” … the pursuit of happiness.” The greater manifestation of this world-life-view formed a sense of economic, cultural, and political destiny that engineered the great westward expansion of the United States and the conquest of the continent. This overarching sense of destiny gave birth in rapid succession to the great Industrial Revolution, the age of invention, and the spirit of competition that was best exemplified by that “force of nature” Teddy Roosevelt. Roosevelt believed that is was through strife and the readiness for strife that a man or a nation achieved greatness. His was not a view that heralded conflict for the sake of conflict, but instead a striving for mastery, for dominance, and yes, for greatness.

Now I can hear the cacophony of commercial pacifists with a long whining list of what I call ” yeah buts.” The “yeah buts” will get you every time! Their carping will always sound the alarm of abuse and malfeasance that are at times exhibited in free markets and in the rarified air of freedom. Yeah, but what about the monopolies, the robber barons, child labor, the “greed” of the 1980’s or the more recent scandals with Enron or Worldcom? Nowhere have I suggested that the freedom to strive, to compete, or the desire for success and achievement in business is to be devoid of ethics! This is a subject that will be taken up more fully another time, but for now, suffice it to say that we are to battle with a sense of purpose, destiny and ethics that will not only see the accumulation of wealth but the enjoyment of the same with a good conscience.

Sphere of Influence

Few of us will be motivated by the idea of conquering a continent, as was the case with our forefathers. Yet, we all have a sphere of influence that takes into account geography, economics, relationships, and the role we are to play in shaping that micro-world. Do you look upon all you survey with a sense of destiny and leadership? If not, why not? And if not you, then who? Oh there will always be the armchair critic, the casual expert who will be all too glad to give you advice on why you won’t be able to achieve. These defeatist fear-mongers may even come from within your own family. But what of that sense of destiny, that nagging desire to achieve, and the impulse to be the head and not the tail that burns deep within your heart? That inward sense of achievement must be fed, nurtured, and directed.

A strategic worldview of victory must be translated into tactical plans for commercial and personal success. In other words “what you view is what you do.” If your world-life-view is one of doom and despair then you will accomplish little toward victorious results. But if you are intoxicated with a sense of destiny and a vision of expansion and prosperity, if you love the sting of battle and will not shirk from rigorous competition, if you wish to lead in your sphere of influence and to dominate the market place ethically, then you have laid the foundation for success and satisfaction. In fact you’ve decided to become a “John Wayne” while eschewing “John Whine.”

Having a fully articulated world-life-view is the key element in defining the battlefields of life. That is to be the one that establishes the rules of the game, who takes the initiative and makes the “other guy” respond to you! In political life, the paranoid candidate is always concerned about “opposition research.” Such insecure creatures are only assuaged when they think they have all of the appropriate responses to whatever their rival might do or say. For such, the idea of fielding their own agenda and even ignoring the opposition’s lesser ideas is somewhat foreign. Yet, the true statesman always stakes out the philosophical high ground and makes his opponents respond to his initiatives. The same principle is true in business and in all of life.

To possess battlefield awareness is to understand your reasons for entering into the arena of commerce. Surely, you want to prosper but to what end? What is your intention and objective? Once you have this understanding, prosperity has purpose and becomes the power to achieve the greater end. This pursuit is in no way a pacifistic endeavor. There will be obstacles, mind-numbing fatigue, seemingly indefatigable foes, and at times a sense of being overwhelmed. It is during these trials that the understanding of the purpose of your mission may very well be your only solace.

Prosperity is the power behind hopes and aspirations. It is a means to an end and not an end in and of itself. Once you see this you have a proper comprehension of the battlefield of business and commerce. What you will have developed is a core world-life-view of victory that will govern and animate all of your endeavors. Without such purpose you will be adrift and aimless, susceptible to the siren song of mediocrity. You literally can’t afford such anthems governing your life!

Charge!

Once, you understand your environs and have developed a world-life-view to dominate the same you are by default in leadership. “He who reads leads…” is an axiom that bears weight and significance. Yet, whether your personal character, fortitude, and courage can actually demonstrate what you know to be true is another issue altogether.


Leadership is a quality much admired in political and business ranks. Unfortunately, leadership is also quite lacking in today’s commercial environs and most especially in American political life. Much of this is due to the lack of the aforementioned “proper worldview.”


All leadership is driven by vision! It is the engine from which all other aspects related to success are advanced. Yet leadership is more than having a great idea or lofty dream. Leadership must be demonstrated by the courage to act, and maintained by an indefatigable will. These are the essential elements for effective statesmanship or commerce. Vision does not occur in a vacuum! It requires reading and development! This is far more than trendy periodicals, opinion polls, or the latest “Power Point” innovation from some faceless MBA! True enlightened leadership requires the reading of the greater works of philosophy, history, theology, science and that most neglected of documents, The Federal Constitution. In all, these will all act as a furnace to forge great thoughts, great ideas, and a mental acuity that is able to seize the day!


Moreover, effective leadership is able to translate strategic thoughts to tactical plans in a political context, ideology must be married to practical solutions. Add to this rhetoric, personal inspiration of your political base and an unquenchable work ethic and you have the right ingredients that will make others respond to you and your initiatives.

Now we come to that essential element of leadership without which nothing can be accomplished. Courage! Granted courage without knowledge is the realm of fools! Yet, knowledge uncoupled to courage has little value. Teddy Roosevelt penned 35 books and was the winner of The Nobel Peace Prize. His intellect was keen. But, it was that singular act of courage in the charge of San Juan Hill that created the platform from which his knowledge could best be employed.

Further, it takes many acts of courage to lead up to that “San Juan” experience. With TR, many personal challenges, heartaches, and confrontations were faced head-on, long before he led the Roughriders. This character development is evidenced in the deportment and stature of the statesman or executive. Courage becomes a dignified garment more than any singular act. Hence, a true leader is able to command the field, more by what he is, than what he says.


A courageous character is not built through confession anymore than standing in a garage makes one an automobile. The assails of life, the challenge of life, the strengthening of the heart through trial, and conflict, all these take our measure and cause our growth.

End Game

Worldview, knowledge, strategic thought and the courage to act, taken together are the minimal requirements for success in business or statesmanship.

Let’s face it: most of our societal interactions are hampered by minimalist expectations.

How many executives know the difference between the economic theories of John Maynard Keynes and Ludwig Von Mises? Have they read the Communist Manifesto? Have they ever heard of the “New Deal” or “The Great Society” let alone understand the combined deleterious effects these programs have had on economic progress? Do they have an understanding of unalienable rights as depicted in the bill of rights? No, these are not questions for the intellectual “elite” and in fact, are basic ideas, that even the marvelously mediocre of our culture once knew! Leadership can and must take the field and fill the vacuum created by our societal lack of knowledge. Without these principles the modern grey flannelled management minion is left to beat the air.

The executive, professional, or statesman that develops a worldview and philosophy of prosperity and cultivates courageous leadership to act upon the same, to him belong the spoils that only victory can bring. Herein is a foundation we can rely on for generations and not the hollow mantra of change Obama style.


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