The worst came later
I enjoy your magazine immensely and just read the piece on Hurricane Floyd ("God has been good to us," Sept. 25). God's mercy is indeed wonderful beyond description. However, the flooding in the aftermath has given eastern North Carolina the worst disaster in the area in 700 years. There is incredible suffering and the worst may be yet to come in the form of disease. - Dub Karriker, Durham, N.C.
J. Budziszewski may be on to something when he writes that "Badly timed higher education" is a reason universities are "havens for crackpot ideologies" ("Common sense," Sept. 25). The school I served as a house parent hired three Ph.D.s who never forgot their lofty educational attainments and were not even remotely interested in hearing from those with many years of experience working with young people. We could have spared both them and the students a great deal of pain had they been willing to listen to common sense. - Fred Battles, Felton, Pa.
I urge Mr. Thomas to think twice about encouraging Pat Buchanan and other Republicans to stay put ("Don't do it, Pat," Sept. 25). The Republican Party simply must be taught that it needs social conservatives and that we are not to be taken for granted. If I vote for a third-party candidate and thereby help a liberal Democrat defeat a Republican who does not hold to my values, then next election maybe the Republicans will pay a little closer attention and put up a candidate I can vote for. - Kerry Dougan, Valparaiso, Ind.
Pat Buchanan's consideration of a third-party run tells us more about him than all his past presidential aspirations ever could. His blind ambition could wreak havoc on a Republican run in 2000, resulting in further liberal entrenchment in our judicial system. He obviously does not have a broad enough appeal with our party to carry its standard. Let's hope his wounded pride doesn't try to sink it. - Margaret Hudson, Winchester, Va.
To the trash heap
A party that did not require its candidates to support the effort to ban partial-birth abortion, which kow-towed to the minority Democrats during the investigation of the president's malfeasance, and is as guilty as the Democrats in squandering the taxpayers' money on frivolous pork-barrel projects deserves to be relegated to the trash heap of American politics. Sorry, Cal, I'm voting my conscience from now on. I'm sick and tired of being used and feeling dirty when I come out of the voting booth. - Jim Stair, Portland, Ore.
"Russia's seven new spirits" (Sept. 25) was a spot-on editorial. My first trip to Moscow in 1992 with a parachurch ministry revealed the same vision to me. The "Strong Man" of totalitarian communism was routed and the nation was in a spiritual void, but unless the Holy Spirit filled that void, totalitarianism would return sevenfold. Having just returned from Russia, I now cringe to see the handwriting on the wall. Tragically, mass evangelism has done little to work the leaven of the gospel into Russian society. The planting of indigenous Russian evangelical churches is crucial in bringing the Reformation to this great nation, which has been bound in feudalism for 1,000 years. This investment will pay worthwhile dividends both now and for all eternity. - Kristian Mineau, North Reading, Mass.
I am a Regent University student studying journalism. I understand that you have given my class a free subscription. Thank you. Your magazine is a very enjoyable read and the stories are unlike any other Christian magazine. - Kristin Reeg, Virginia Beach, Va.
No way around it
Regarding "First for the Jew" (Sept. 25): The fact that many Jewish organizations are hostile to the mere idea of Christian evangelism is related to the identity crisis and insecurity of modern American secular Judaism. Its members don't know what they believe in and are affronted by the chutzpa of witnessing Christians. Although we need to be sensitive about Jewish cultural and historical concerns, no amount of sensitivity will overcome this hostility. Neither will it satisfy theological liberals who name the name of Christ but do not know the Jewish carpenter from Nazareth. The gospel is offensive. There is no way around it. - Jim Melnick, Falmouth, Va.
Mr. Mohler's excellent commentary is one of the best statements regarding evangelism of the Jews that I have read. It is concise, appropriate, and should issue a wake-up call to our liberal brothers and sisters. - Victor R. Durrance, Beggs, Okla.
So long, friend
I keep asking myself why Christians agonize over the filth that the TV spews forth ("Don't look now," Sept. 18). If we invited a friend to our home and he started saying things that were contrary to what we believed and talked in a way that was offensive, we would stop inviting him. Twelve years ago we took our TV "friend" out the front door and left it for trash pick-up. The quality of our family life improved almost immediately. - Judy Smitley, Harrisburg, Pa.
Simple concerning evil
As a new subscriber, I was disappointed with the article about Burning Man ("Burned out," Sept. 18). I am not opposed to knowing what the "world" is doing as I do not wish to be ignorant. But, God tells us to be "simple concerning evil," and it was very easy to picture in every detail the fellow hopping out of the truck. It was difficult to think on things that are pure, lovely, and good while reading that article. - Linda Selby, Walworth, N.Y.
Hearts needed now
Regarding "Public-school god" (Sept. 11), which says that "Christians shouldn't stake their future in a such a deity": Christians who choose to be in the public schools are not staking their kid's future in the world. Expecting our kids to wait until they are adults to have a heart for the lost is like expecting them to wait until they are adults to read their Bibles or pray. Sadly, many families are producing fat baby Christian kids who never exercise their faith. - Jill Cataldo, Charlottesville, Va.
Up the revolution
You go to the critical core of how to catalyze cultural revolution for the kingdom of God. By revealing the indoctrinating nature of public schools, you press upon parents and church leaders the truth that by teaching our own, we disciple them, true and aim the arrows, and then with them we convert and disciple both our and other nations. Even non-Christians, if they value liberty, should detest state-run schools. All children should be trained up far from the madding crowd and the mind and heart control of government schools. - Brian D. Ray, Salem, Ore.
Walk with the wise
I noted the quote from the principal of Zeeland Christian School, that "Kids learn better how to be kids from other kids than from adults" ("Meeting special needs," Sept. 11). That is the very reason I give when asked about the "socialization" of my six home-schooled children. I want my kids to grow up to be civilized, functioning adults, which can only be learned from adults. He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm. - Ann Wingfield, Weaverville, N.C.
I can't dispute your assessment of primetime Pax TV ("Pax Americana," Sept. 11), but please give Mr. Paxson credit for airing worship. Sensitive photography, uplifting music, pure Scripture, and sound gospel preaching create unparalleled Christian programming, commercial-free for each half-hour. - Sue C. Wheeler, Lansing, Mich.
With earthquakes in Turkey ("Keeping count," Sept. 4), Taiwan, and now Mexico, an interviewer of a television news program asked an earthquake specialist if these were all related. He said that it was just a coincidence that they would all happen so close together. However, I was reminded of the verse that says, "But the Lord is the true God; He is the living God, the eternal King. When He is angry, the earth trembles; the nations cannot endure His wrath." - Elise I. Smith, Houston, Texas