Matt W Cook

writer.former fundamentalist.christianly fellow

Month: October, 2007


I just finished reading Political Ideals by Bertrand Russell. Most Christians tend to steer clear of him because of his views on the church, but I think it’s a shame to cut a section of books out just because we don’t happen to agree with the author. I found the book very engaging and I’m with Russell on most of his points. It’s a small book, go grab yourself a copy.

Russell writes about his views on how nations and states and governments should be run, focusing on economic restructuring. He claims one of the greatest evils in the western world today is the wage system because it gives an employer the power to reduce an individual to destitution if he doesn’t like him. He has a lot of neat suggestions on how things can be improved and he makes a lot of convincing points. Here’s a few quotes that stood out:

We see that men’s political dealings with one another are based on wholly wrong ideals, and can only be saved by quite different ideals.

The aim of politics should be to make the lives of individuals as good as possible.
The best life is the one in which the creative impulses play the largest part and the possessive impulses the smallest.

The injustice of destitution and wealth alike ought to be rendered impossible. Then a great fear would be removed from the lives of the many, and hope would have to take on a better form in the lives of the few.

Few men seem to realize how many of the evils from which we suffer are wholly unnecessary, and that they could be abolished by a united effort within a few years…with good-will, generosity and intelligence.

The world is full of preventable evils which most men would be glad to see prevented.
Sufficient pay to ensure a livelihood ought to be given to every person who is willing to work, independently of the question whether the particular work at which he is skilled is wanted at the moment or not. If it is not wanted some new trade which is wanted ought to be taught at the public expense. Why, for example, should a hansom-cab driver be allowed to suffer on account of the introduction of taxis?…At present, owning to the fact that all industrial changes tend to cause hardships to some section of wage-earners, there is a tendency to technical conservatism on the part of labour, a dislike of innovations, new processes, and new methods.

Every man who has really sincere desire for any great amelioration in the conditions of life has first to face ridicule, then persecution, then cajolery and attempts at subtle corruption.

Life and hope for the world are to be found only in the deeds of love.

[The man with the right view of things] will not desire for his country the passing triumphs of a narrow possessiveness, but rather the enduring triumph of having helped to embody in human affairs something of that spirit of brotherhood which Christ taught and which the Christian churches have forgotten.


I realize that we who go by the name Christian ought to work hard for the welfare of our fellow man. I suppose that’s supposed to be obvious, but how often do we really sit down and think about how we can improve the lives of the people around us? Have we really forgotten something that Christ was teaching?


Still here…

I haven’t forgotten about you guys. I’m hanging in Sanghar right now and plugging away at a few projects. I promise I’ll muse real hard tonight and get you a good blog to make up for lost time, okay?

Blessed be…

It’s been a while, I know. And I’m sorry about that.

I was digging around the innards of my computer and I stumbled across a little Bible study I was working on while in Canada. I went through the Bible and found every occurrence of the word ‘blessed’ when it referred to a person or nation. I tried in every case to find the reason for the blessing and I put it into a list. When I found it last week it was pretty rough, but I cleaned it up and here it is (in no particular order). Enjoy.

Blessed are…
Those with many children. – Psalm 127.05

Those with clear consciences. – Romans 14.22

Those whose strength is in God. – Psalm 84.05

Those whose God is the Lord. – Psalm 144.15, Psalm 33.12

Those whose eyes and ears are open. – Matthew 13.16

Those who weep. -Matthew 05.04, Luke 06.21

Those who wash their robes – Revelation 22.14

Those who walk in the light of God’s face. – Psalm 89.15

Those who wait for God. – Isaiah 30.18

Those who trust in the Lord. – Psalm 21.03-07, 40.04, 84.12, Proverbs 16.20, Jeremiah 17.07

Those who take refuge in God. – Psalm 01.12, 34.08

Those who stay awake and work until the master comes. – Matthew 24.46, Luke 12.37, 12.38, 12.43, Revelation 16.15

Those who share in the first resurrection. – Revelation 20.06

Those who serve the Lord. – Exodus 23.25

Those who separate themselves from sin. – Psalm 01.01-02

Those who seek God’s testimonies. – Psalm 119.02

Those who see Christ. – Luke 10.23

Those who repay good for evil. – 1 Peter 03.09

Those who rebuke sinners. – Proverbs 24.25

Those who read aloud the words of this prophecy. – Revelation 01.03

Those who praise God. – Psalm 84.04

Those who obtain wisdom. – Proverbs 03.13, 03.18, 08.32, 08.34

Those who observe the Sabbatical year. – Leviticus 25.21, Deuteronomy 15.01-06

Those who obey God’s commands. – Deuteronomy 11.26-27, 30.16 Psalm 119.01, 02

Those who love God’s word. – Psalm 01.01-02, 112.01

Those who lend without interest. – Deuteronomy 23.20

Those who know the festal shout. – Psalm 89.15

Those who keep the words of the prophecy of this book. – Revelation 22.07

Those who keep the Sabbath. – Isaiah 56.02

Those who hunger and thirst for righteousness. – Matthew 05.06

Those who hope in the Lord. – Psalm 146.05

Those who hear or know the word and do it. – Deuteronomy 07.13-14, Proverbs 29.18, Luke 11.28, John 13.17, James 01.25

Those who have the highways to Zion in their heart. – Psalm 84.05

Those who have not seen, but believe. – John 20.29

Those who have no deceit in them. – Psalm 24.04-05

Those who have no deceit in them. – Psalm 34.08, 45.02

Those who have Christ revealed to them from heaven. – Matthew 16.17

Those who God loves. – Deuteronomy 23.05

Those who God chooses. – Psalm 65.04, Isaiah 44.03, Ephesians 01.03-06

Those who give to the poor. – Deuteronomy 14.29, 24.19, Psalm 41.01-02, Proverbs 11.25, 26, 14.21, 22.09, Luke 14.14, Acts 20.35

Those who give of their substance to God. – Ezekiel 44.30, Malachi 03.10

Those who get vengeance on Babylon. – Psalm 137.08-09

Those who fear the Lord. – Psalm 112.01, 115.13, 128.01-04, Proverbs 28.14

Those who faithfully obey the voice of God. – Deuteronomy 28.01-14

Those who eat bread in the kingdom of God. – Luke 14.15

Those who deal with sin as God commands. – Exodus 32.29

Those who come in the name of the Lord. – Psalm 118.26

Those who care for God’s holy things. – 2 Samuel 06.12, 1 Chronicles 13.14

Those who bless the blessed. – Genesis 12.03, Numbers 24.09

Those who ask for it. – Genesis 32.26-29, 1 Chronicles 04.10

Those who are taught by God. – Psalm 94.12

Those who are steadfast. – Job 42.12, Proverbs 28.20, James 01.12, 05.11

Those who are righteous. – Psalm 05.12, 106.03, Proverbs 03.33, 10.06, 07, Isaiah 56.01-02

Those who are pure in heart. – Psalm 24.04-05, Matthew 05.08

Those who are prayed for. – 2 Corinthians 01.11

Those who are poor. – Luke 06.20

Those who are poor in spirit. – Matthew 05.03

Those who are peacemakers. – Matthew 05.09

Those who are of faith. – Galatians 03.09

Those who are not offended by Christ. – Matthew 11.06, Luke 07.23

Those who are near to God. – Psalm 65.05

Those who are merciful. – Matthew 05.07

Those who are meek. – Matthew 05.05

Those who are just. – Psalm 106.03, Isaiah 56.01-02

Those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb. – Revelation 19.09

Those who are insulted or persecuted for Christ. – Matthew 05.10, 11, Luke 06.22, 1 Peter 03.14, 04.14

Those who are hungry. – Luke 06.21

Those who are forgiven. – Psalm 32.01, Romans 04.07

Those who are disciplined by God. – Job 05.17, Psalm 94.12

Those who are dead in the Lord. – Revelation 14.13

Those who are blameless. – Psalm 119.01

Those who are associated with the godly. – Genesis 17.20, 25.11, 26.03, 24

Those to whom God does not count sin. – Psalm 32.02, Romans 04.08

The nations. – Genesis 26.04, 28.14

The nations that God strikes and heals. – Isaiah 19.24-25