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rookie
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Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4792


 Re:

I have attempted to identify a significant event within the history of this nation. This event is the focus of man's efforts to persuade men and women in the ways that they should go. Within the last 40 years, the nature of our economy has changed. Prior to this period, we as a nation invested our resources into building the infrastructure. This country had over the course of two centuries built something that was real. We have seen men become wealthy for the things that they produced. They built railroads, cars, and roads. They drilled for oil. They harvested timber. Now, as I have established in prior posts, the wealth has shifted to those who produce information. Advertising, media, entertainment, retailing, and investments dominate the wealth of this nation.

So now having identified this mass movement of men and women striving to capture the minds of men, I will attempt to identify some of the manifestations produced by their work.

During the 1980's there was a thought being promoted throughout the media. Many people were losing their jobs to foreign competition. There was a debate being waged. The main question was this: to whom are the corporations responsible? For those losing their jobs, they sought to include themselves under the umbrella of corporate responsibility. For those who owned the corporations, they sought to deny any responsiblity for the labor force. The common thought promoted throughtout the media was; the corportations are responsible to their shareowners only. The sole objective for the corporate entity was to make a profit. During the soaring stock market days of that decade, most people accepted this wisdom. We have learned to assign wisdom to events which if they prove themselves successful, then the methods used to attain the success must be correct. Paris Reidhead speaks to this type of thinking in his sermon, Ten Shekels and a Shirt.

Can you see the fallacy inherent in this method of perception? I am not argueing for or against the corporation. I am seeking to identify the ways men have traveled in this generation. I am seeking to identify the substance of men's faith. I am seeking to identify the evidence of the hopes for which men and women strive.

Out of time
In Christ
Jeff


_________________
Jeff Marshalek

 2004/7/15 12:29Profile
rookie
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Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4792


 Re:

I wrote in the previous post:

"The sole objective for the corporate entity was to make a profit."

Today, most would agree with the truth of this statement. I too agree that an entity existing as a corporation under the law of capitalism must have this goal. However, my intent is to look through Scripture for the warnings that are given to us.

First, I believe we as christians do not seek to differentiate between the things of this world and the things of Christ. Many christians believe that the precepts of democracy, capitalism, and corporations are somehow part of His kingdom. I would suggest otherwise. I believe these precepts are not of the heavenly Jerusalem. I believe these systems have been created by man. Thus I believe these systems fall under the sway of Satan. With that said, I also believe that christians are called to be the salt within these systems.

Secondly, based on the precept that the corporation exists to make a profit, and that most corporations fall under the sway of Satan, it is up to God to take from what is bad and mean it for good for those who love Him. Remember, the doctrine of total depravity? Does it not apply to all systems created by man?

And here is the warning that we have from Scripture.

"For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves though with many sorrows." 1 Timothy 6:10.

First, who is it that is being warned? Is is not the believer? How did they stumble? They strayed from the faith in their greediness. What do we hear from the media? How does it influence our decisions? Do we not hear that greed is good. Do we choose not to see all kinds of evil that grow out of the pursuit of money?

I believe the church suffers from a hypocritical faith. We profess Christ, and yet we also choose to not see all the warnings that Christ gave us. We see many striving to maintain prosperity by their own efforts. We see the kings of this world seeking to control the nations of this world. And for what purpose? Is is not to find security, and ease of life in this life? Look to the history of this world. Look to the vain strivings of men.

Out of time
In Christ
Jeff


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Jeff Marshalek

 2004/7/19 11:33Profile
rookie
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Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4792


 Re:

I forgot to make this point. If the love of money promotes all kinds of evil, will not this evil manifest itself in the depraved systems of men?

The question is, do we as christians recognize those things which appeal to the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life? These are the devices of Satan. Do you see these devices being used to influence your thoughts, your desires, and your actions? Are we straying from the faith because of greediness? Do we entertain futile thoughts?

"Let him not trust in futile things, deceiving himself, for futility will be his reward." Job 15:31

In Christ
Jeff


_________________
Jeff Marshalek

 2004/7/19 12:24Profile
Rahman
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Joined: 2004/3/24
Posts: 1374


 Re:




brother Jeff you posted:


((( The question is, do we as christians recognize those things which appeal to the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life? These are the devices of Satan. Do you see these devices being used to influence your thoughts, your desires, and your actions? Are we straying from the faith because of greediness? Do we entertain futile thoughts? )))


i think there is a remnant of saints who see what's going on but it seems to me the majority of saints i'm around not only don't see it, but don't even want to see it ... They don't even want to talk about the type of things you, i, and so many others post, in fact i get more feed back about what concerns me spiritually on this SI forum than i can in actual conversation with fellow saints ... i had a very close friend tell me some weeks ago that he was concidering not being around me anymore, because he did not want to know what i know ... well at least he was honest enought to say it to me straight instead of either giving me the brush off, or avoiding me all together ...

i've been sending up some timber for you as of late, after reading your posts from your family trip to Mexico up till this last one, because i said to the Lord, "This brother seems to be on a heavier mission than my own" ... i totally love the factual data you put out juxstaposed alongside scripture and your stinging questions, but then i'm analytical, and i don't think most folk are ... i'm just hoping and praying that if you're getting in real life the same type of patronizing "well bless God brother" babble that i get from so many folk i know, that it's not making you weary or depressed in your mission ... i've been very weary at times in mine, but i've had something happen to me in the past week that has taken my "self" totally out of the equation of what His mission is for me, and that is that "i am nothing" ... i'm just a trumpet, an instrument for God to pick up when He chooses to blow thru me, and to put down when He chooses to cease ... So are you ... So is every Christian ... So if He's blowing thru you and it seems like no ones listening, there's no need for a negative reaction in us, because instuments don't have feelings, and when one comes to truly seeing themselves as God's instrument (and not vise-versa), if folk don't like, or refuse to hear, or better yet dance to, the tune that's coming thru you, they ain't rejecting you the instrument, they're rejecting the Musician ... i now fully understand that my joy is not that folk would listen and dance to my tune (that would be reward down here), it's not even my tune, but that He's chosen to pick me up and blow thru me in the first place (that's reward in heaven) ...

i am nothing ... you are nothing ... we are nothing ... and certainly all this shiny bling-bling crap that satan keeps the world, and alas so much of Christ Church hypnotized with, certainly ain't nothing, those dear saints in Mexico know that ... Christ is everything ... His kingdom is everything ... His righteousness is everything ... All else N-O-T-H-I-N-G !!!

i'm no longer concerned with the hows, whys and wherefores of what this world, or Christ Church is coming to ... do you know why? ... because i already know ... it's all escalating toward His will being done on earth, as it already is in heaven ... God has it all under control ... LET ME SHOUT THIS AGAIN - GOD HAS IT ALL UNDER CONTROL ... i find that so comforting, so soothing ...

when i think back on all that i know about the thousands of years of human history, this is what i see ... God intervening at His own appointed time, with His own appointed servant(s), bringing to pass what He has appointed from since before the founding of the world ... Same with now ... When God is ready He'll sound an epoch changing trumpet, or two, or three, that'll wake us all up in a way that's unmistakably Him ... What an honor it would be to be one of those trumpets ... REPENT! - FOR THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IS AT HAND!

 2004/7/19 18:42Profile
rookie
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Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4792


 Re:

Brother Rahman:

You brought a new song to my heart this morning.

It is a very lonely place that I am in. Your experiences that you have shared are the things of my life. The thoughts that I share, of the things of this world, I too fall prey to Satan's devices. The more I see the less I am.

In Christ
Jeff


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Jeff Marshalek

 2004/7/20 14:32Profile
rookie
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Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4792


 Re:

What are some of the manifestations that have come about because of this pragmatic approach of capitalism? Last week, I found out that the 5 digit number tatooed on Holocaust survivors was created by IBM. This numbering system was created to facilitate record keeping for the Nazi prisoner system. It is all about making a profit.

What was true 70 years ago is true today. There is nothing new under the sun. The ways of men have not changed, just the names.

"America Hosts 76 percent of Islamic Terrorist Websites
by Sean Beesley

While America and the world combat terror, it appears that the terrorists and their supporters themselves are tapping into America’s booming web hosting industry to spread their venom.

With the war on terror in full swing and terrorists scrambling to reorganize and regroup, the anonymous nature of the Internet has become an essential tool. As we often hear in news reports terrorists and their supporters have become more reliant on websites, message boards and chat rooms to communicate, rally supporters, and grotesquely display their barbaric acts of beheading to the world. We in the western world generally assume that these sites are set up and run in some remote Middle Eastern country spewing their hate to the world from afar. However, the first instalment of new report by MEMRI (Middle Middle East Media Research Institute) has a shocking revelation.

The Middle East Media Research Institute has released part one of it's report on terror affiliated Websites. In a special report entitled Islamist Websites and Their Hosts Part I: Islamist Terror Organizations, which they state is to be the first of many reports on the topic. MEMRI has listed 25 terror affiliated or official Websites active as of July 16 2004. Based on the information shown 20 of the sites are hosted in North America, 19 in the United States and 1 in Canada. The remaining sites were from the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Russia, United Arab Emirates, and Iran. Meaning 76 percent of the official or affiliated terror sites mentioned are hosted in the United States, while two sites or 8 percent are from the middle east. The American hosted sites include the website of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Army of Ansar Al-Sunnah ; known supporters of Al-Qa'ida, several pro Al-Qa'ida sites including one that publishes Al-Qa'ida's Al-Battar Training Camp magazine, the official website of Hamas, a pro- Hizbullah weekly magazine, Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, the military wing of Arafat’s Fatah organization, Hizbullah TV station Al-Manar, website of Palestinian Islamic Jihad Secretary General Dr. Abdallah Ramadhan Shalah., and Al-Quds Brigades, military wing of Palestinian Islamic Jihad. While the site for Izz Al-din Al-Qassam, military wing of Hamas, is hosted in Kelowna, Canada.

In general, hosting companies have general terms and conditions regarding content that they require their clients to agree to. The majority of these terms state that the dissemination of hate is prohibited. However, with a large increase in third party subcontracting of hosting services and thousands of news sites emerging everyday, it is not know how widely these conditions are enforced. Canada Free Press is presently contacting the companies listed in the report as to their comments.

http://www.canadafreepress.com/cover_storys.htm"

Do you see?

In Christ
Jeff


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Jeff Marshalek

 2004/7/20 14:50Profile
rookie
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Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4792


 Re:

One manifestation that permeates our world today is the idea that we as an educated people must grow more tolerant of others. One of the major contributors to promotion of this precept is the marketing divisions of the corporation. With profit being the motive, the goal of the message is to remove all things that seperate people groups from one another. The thrust of the effort is to remove division. The thrust of the message is to gain the acceptance of as many people as possible. The idea of free trade is one example of the type of message permeating our generation.

The push to homogenize people groups for the purpose of creating consumption can be illustrated by the following illustration. The corportations began marketing to the gay and lesbian groups a decade ago. Think about it, what entities were the first to legitimize same sex unions. Was it not the corporations who began treating same sex couples as normal family relationships? If you still watch TV shows, what position does the entertainment industry promote? If you watch the news, what expert opinions are voiced to promote or reject the normalizing of gay and lesbian relationships? I believe the majority of the "expert witnesses," promote only the acceptance of the gay and lesbian positions.

And you know what, the marketing effort is working. The younger generations, are as a majority, being swayed to view homosexuality as normal.

The marketing industry has identified these groups as profit potential. Budwieser Beer has for years focussed on gay men as source of profit. I am sorry for this illustration, yet it is true, the long neck beer bottle was brought back for the sole purpose of gaining gay market share.

Do you see how the love of money cause men to accept all kinds of evil?

In Christ
Jeff


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Jeff Marshalek

 2004/7/21 15:51Profile
rookie
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Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4792


 Re:

Again, with profit being the motive, the corporate entity will seek to dismiss roadblocks that are meant for good. Here is another current illustration.

Grand Jury Steps Up Inquiry Into Possible Halliburton Ties to Iran
By T. Christian Miller and Peter Wallsten
Times Staff Writers

July 21, 2004
WASHINGTON — A Halliburton controversy erupted Tuesday, fueled by a grand jury investigation into whether the oil services giant violated federal sanctions by operating in Iran while Vice President Dick Cheney was running the company.

The investigation centers on Halliburton Products and Services Ltd., a subsidiary registered in the Cayman Islands and headquartered in Dubai that provided oil field services in Iran. The unit's operations in Iran included Cheney's stint as chief executive from 1995 to 2000, when he frequently urged the lifting of such sanctions.

Numerous U.S. companies operate in Iran, but under strict guidelines requiring that their subsidiaries have a foreign registry and no U.S. employees, and that they act independently of the parent company.

At issue is whether Halliburton's subsidiary met those criteria.

The Treasury Department has been investigating the matter since 2001. But Halliburton disclosed in public financial filings this week that the department had forwarded the case to the U.S. attorney in Houston for further investigation. The company said a federal grand jury had subpoenaed documents on its Iranian operations.

The Treasury Department refers such complaints only after finding evidence of "serious and willful violations" of the sanctions law, a government official said.

Sen. Frank R. Lautenberg (D-N.J.), whose office has provided information on the case to the Treasury Department, said Tuesday that Halliburton Products and Services was a sham that existed only to circumvent the sanctions.

"It's unconscionable that an American company would skirt the law to help Iran generate revenues," Lautenberg told reporters during a conference call arranged by the campaign of the presumed Democratic presidential nominee, Sen. John F. Kerry of Massachusetts.

Bush campaign spokesman Steve Schmidt called the allegations against Cheney baseless, and accused Democrats of trying to use Halliburton as a distraction. Cheney's office and the White House characterized the latest criticisms of Halliburton as political.

"The Democrats have made clear that their all-purpose strategy, no matter the issue, whether it's healthcare or John Kerry's plans to raise taxes or John Kerry's votes against our men and women in uniform or John Kerry's proposals to cut the intelligence budget, will be met by one word: Halliburton," Schmidt said. "The Kerry campaign has become increasingly flailing in their attacks as there has been increasing focus on John Kerry's record."

Democrats have long criticized Cheney for his connections to Halliburton, hoping to link the vice president to the company's contracts for Iraq reconstruction and its overbilling for services in that country. Cheney has denied any connection to the contracts.

The company has repeatedly found itself at the center of government investigations.

The Securities and Exchange Commission and the Justice Department are looking into allegations that top officials in a consortium that included a Halliburton subsidiary paid millions of dollars in bribes to win contracts in Nigeria. The Justice Department is also looking into reports that Halliburton officials took $6.3 million in kickbacks in Iraq. The Pentagon is examining whether the company overcharged U.S. taxpayers by more than $186 million for meals never served to U.S. troops abroad.

Treasury and Justice officials declined to comment on their inquiry into the Halliburton subsidiary.

Violation of the sanctions can result in criminal charges, and those found guilty can face 10 years in prison. A company can be fined as much as $500,000.

Lautenberg said that in the Iran case, the actions taken by the Republican-controlled Justice and Treasury departments showed that the accusations against Cheney were more than political.

He noted that the grand jury investigation comes amid a flurry of questions about Iran's role in terrorism against the United States.

The independent commission investigating the 2001 terrorist attacks is expected to conclude in a report due Thursday that several of the Sept. 11 hijackers passed through Iran on their way to the United States.

Lautenberg's office distributed copies of four letters from 1997 sent from a London arm of the Iranian state oil company to Halliburton Products and Services in Dubai.

The four letters, all requests for goods and services from the Halliburton subsidiary, included handwritten notations to specific individuals. Lautenberg's staff questioned whether the individuals worked for the foreign subsidiary or for a U.S. subsidiary, in violation of the sanctions.

Halliburton confirmed the authenticity of the documents, but said that two of the individuals were British citizens who had never worked for any U.S. Halliburton subsidiary.

The other two handwritten notations did not list first names of the individuals, and Halliburton said it was unable to locate records for them.

"These documents do not suggest that any violation of the applicable regulations occurred," Halliburton spokeswoman Wendy Hall said in a statement.

Hall said Halliburton's business in Iran had not violated any sanctions, and pledged full cooperation with the government's inquiry.

"It is important to understand, especially in the current political environment, that this is not a condemnation of the company, but a method of further studying the facts," Hall said of the grand jury subpoena. "We welcome a thorough review of any and all of the company's business."

The law forbids U.S. companies from doing business with countries considered by the U.S. government to be sponsors of terrorism. The list includes Iran, North Korea, Cuba and Sudan.

An executive order signed by President Clinton in 1995 specifically prohibits U.S. firms from activities that would benefit the Iranian petroleum industry. The order accuses Iran of sponsorship of international terrorism, undermining the Middle East peace process and developing weapons of mass destruction.

Development of petroleum resources, Clinton said at the time, "would provide new funds that the Iranian government could use to continue its current policies."

Halliburton's Iran operations are virtually all related to oil and gas, and generated at least $39 million in revenue last year, the company said.

The policy allowing U.S. firms to indirectly operate in prohibited countries has come under increasing attack.

One leading critic is New York City Comptroller William C. Thompson Jr., a Democrat who oversees the city's pension fund. He has launched an effort to persuade Halliburton and other firms he invests in to cut all ties to countries that sponsor terrorism.

A January report by CBS' "60 Minutes" featured Thompson and raised questions about the Halliburton subsidiary that does business in Iran.

In that report, a CBS reporter traveled to the company's Cayman Islands operations, only to find no such company there. Instead, the building is owned by a local bank.

A bank employee told the reporter that when mail arrived for the Halliburton subsidiary, it was forwarded directly to Houston.


end of article.

The nature of the business of natural resource extraction requires that the business find more resources to extract. The value of the company in not based only on what it sells today. The true value is determined by the potential to extract resources tomorrow. A business that can demonstrate abundant ownership of natural resources has high intrinsic value. This pursuit by businesses is world wide. So with profit being the motive, competion for limited resources intensifies. And depraved man and his systems write the rules as they compete.

Do you see the futility of man's pragmatic ways?

In Christ
Jeff
















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Jeff Marshalek

 2004/7/23 12:37Profile
rookie
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Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4792


 Re:

"Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries that are upon you! Your riches are corrupted, and yur garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver are corroded, and their corrosion will be a witness against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have heaped up treasures in the last days. [b]Indeed the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, cry out; and the cries of the reapers have reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth.[/b] You have lived on the earth in pleasure and luxury, you have fattened your hearts as in a day of slaughter. You have condemned, you have murdered the just; he does not resist you." James 5:1-6

When our family traveled to Baja Mexico, we drove past miles of agricultural businesses. These businesses depend on the cheap labor of the Mexican Indians. The indians are bussed up from southern tropical Mexico. They are paid between 7 and 10 American dollars a day for 10 hour work shifts. Most work 6 days a week. Some work 7 days a week. This amount of compensation sustains life for these people. This story is played out all over the world. Whether it is the migrant worker in the San Jacquin Valley of California, or somewhere in China, the story is the same.

I believe there is evidence that this story is reaching more and more people all over the world. Look to the national debt of the United States. Five years ago, we would import 20 billion dollars worth of products and services above what we exported each month. That means as a whole, our incurred debt was about 240 billion dollars. Now the current debt spending record is holding at 40 billion plus per month. China is the primary recipient of our debt spending. Why is this occuring? Corporations, seeking profits, have been allowed to use the Chinese labor force as a comodity. I have a friend whose sister works for Toshiba computer systems. In the last two years Toshiba has been seeking to establish manufacturing plants in China. She said that women between the ages of 14 and 21 are hired to work in these plants. Over time the corporation has determined that this demographic is the most productive segment of the population. This demographic is also present in the border towns adjacent to the American borders with Mexico. I believe the Scripture found in James is becoming a reality in our generation. Look to how these times are manifested in this warning. Look to the book of Revelation. Does it not illustrate the same principles. "And I heard a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying, "A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not harm the oil and the wine." The poor exist on wheat and barley, the rich on oil and wine.

Look around you what do you see?

In Christ
Jeff


_________________
Jeff Marshalek

 2004/7/27 12:47Profile
rookie
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Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4792


 Re:

Here is a timely illustration of the previous post.

CEO pay hikes double
Corporate Library survey finds median raise for S&P 500 CEO was 22.18% in 2003.
July 28, 2004: 8:34 AM EDT

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - The CEO's at the nation's largest companies saw their raises more than doubled in 2003 as the median raise handed out by S&P 500 companies to their top executives was 22.18 percent, according to a study by The Corporate Library.
The watchdog group said that stock options and awards of restricted stock drove the larger pay hikes. But most elements of the pay -- base salary, annual bonuses, restricted stock, long-term incentive payout, value realized from stock options and total compensation -- showed increases. The only type of compensation not to show a gain was the value of stock option grants during the year.

"This double-digit rise in pay shows that calls for pay restraint appear to be being ignored," said the statement from the group.

end of article...

I found this in the Pensees thread:

It is a perverted judgement that makes every one place himself above the rest of the world, and prefer his own good, and the continuance of his own good fortune and life, to that of the rest of the world!

Pascal

We see the strivings of a few men. What about the common man? What about the believer? What is the nature of the fruit of these men's works?

In Christ,
Jeff


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Jeff Marshalek

 2004/7/28 12:01Profile





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