Morning Mashup 10/08


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Vicar of Baghdad Unarmed on the Front Lines – “While the genocide aimed at Christians does not approach the scale of what the Nazis aimed at Europe’s Jews, there are some sobering parallels between each of these assaults upon the innocent.”

Lead in Dating Your Wife – “The easiest way to consistently study your wife and examine your marriage is to lead in routinely dating your wife.”

52 Colorized Historical Photos – These are just plain awesome.

What Does Baseball Have to Do With Fatherhood? – A beautifully written piece from David Prince on fatherhood and baseball.

Facing the Music with Jennifer Knapp – Former Christian musician who recently “came out” has written a book and Trevin Wax offers sobering thoughts on her new work.

The Defense of Marriage Isn’t Over – “Rather than a single Roe v. Wade of marriage, where the Supreme Court would redefine marriage across the nation, the Court, by refusing to hear any of the marriage cases, has allowed lower federal courts to disregard the constitutional authority of citizens and their elected representatives to make good marriage policy.”

Squeezing Persecution – “If the goal of persecution is to silence witness, then it could be said that squeezing is often more effective than beating and imprisonment, because more overt hostility can sometimes serve as a megaphone for Christ.”

Whoever brings an affliction to us, it is God that sends it. –Thomas Watson

Morning Mashup 08/25


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10 articles for your information, edification, enjoyment, and encouragement as you begin your week. Happy Monday!

FAQSs of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge – Are there possible ethical dilemmas with the ALS ice bucket challenge? Russell Moore hashes it all out here.

America in Black and White – Honest and important article from Justin Taylor on the various positions people are taking on Ferguson and why black and white evangelicals are responding differently.

Black and White Pastors Reflecting on Ferguson Together – J.D. Greear and Chris Green reflect together on the issue of race in Ferguson.

President Obama’s Mythical 21st Century – When I heard President Obama’s remarks on ISIS and his typical, “they are sooooo last century,” I realized just how ignorant our President seems to be. Trevin Wax wrote this article in response to Obama’s historically ignorant remarks on ISIS and radical Islam. I wish I had written it. Thanks, Trevin.

ISIS in the 21st Century – Ross Douthat with a similar article from a slightly different perspective.

Different Dimensions, Not ‘Theories’ of the Atonement – Ahh, yes! Such a refreshing look at multiple dimensions of the atonement, and a call to stop calling them theories.

You Can’t Quit Cold Turkey – A compelling and interesting look at ex-Kentucky Wildcat and NFL quarterback Jared Lorenzen and his battle with weight. Though his satisfaction with food surpasses that with football, I pray he finds even deeper satisfaction in the Bread of Life.

A Blind Spot – Ray Ortlund: “My hunch is that some of us white people feel anxiety and confusion about scenes of racially-related strife not because we ourselves feel threatened but because we just don’t know what to do.”

The Strange Tale of the North Pond Hermit – What a truly fascinating story that I can’t believe is true.

Mo’ne Davis, The Little League World Series, and My Daughters – The Little League World Series is over and Mo’ne Davis was a history-making phenomenon. However, read why pastor David Prince would not allow his daughters to compete against the boys past childhood.

God cannot give us happiness apart from Himself, because there is no such thing. –C.S. Lewis

Morning Mashup 08/20


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Many mid-week articles for your information, edification, and enjoyment. Have a great Wednesday!

Is It “Goodbye Evangelicalism” or “We Join You in Your Suffering”? – Thabiti Anyabwile offers sobering thoughts on the state of evangelicalism in light of social injustice.

On Being John Piper’s Son – Ed Stetzer interviews Barnabas Piper about his new book, life as a PK, and parenting.

Who Will Stand Up for the Christians? – Jewish leader, Ronald Lauder: “Why is the world silent while Christians are being slaughtered in the Middle East and Africa?”

ISIS Beheading U.S. Journalist – My heart breaks for this family. If this is authentic, it will be interesting to see how President Obama responds.

How Can the Gospel Be Good News to Gays? – A friend of Sam Alberry was interested in Jesus, but wanted to know how becoming a Christian would affect his gay lifestyle. See how Alberry responded.

What’s It Like in Ferguson? – A pastor who is walking the streets of Ferguson gives us some insight into what life is like in this torn city.

Listening to Find Our Voice on Ferguson – Much wisdom from Darrin Patrick and Ed Copeland on the rush to judgment on the turmoil in Ferguson and how we should move forward.

The Other Side of Ferguson – Check out the mostly unnoticed work of local churches in Ferguson and how they are responding to the situation.

Love, Hate, and a Counter-Intuitive God – Is the biblical command to love really as simple as it seems? Derek Rishmawy gives great insight to a complex topic.

The Black Church and the Black Community – An enlightening conversation between Trevin Wax and Anthony Bradley on listening to the voices of black church leaders.

Letter to a Discouraged Minister – A very encouraging word from Don Whitney to any minister who is wilting under the weight of discouragement.

Resisting Pressure to “Make Something of Yourself” Before Motherhood – “When we put off the beauty of children—often in quest for our own glory, status, or feelings of having ‘arrived’—we are doing it to our peril.”

Men, Are You Settled on the Issue of Abortion? – John Knight challenges men to speak up about abortion for the sake of countless little lives.

Why the Looters Will Have the Most Lasting Impact on Ferguson – Sadly, this is historically true. Continue to pray for peace in Ferguson.

Enjoying the Good Gift of Sports – Barnabas Piper encourages sports fans to think more about sports. He writes, “Instead of undermining appreciation for sports, an active mind bolsters it.”

Seminary Students: Don’t Be That Guy – This is a tremendously helpful article by Philip Bethancourt of the ERLC. Much wisdom about avoiding the title “that guy” in seminary.

The minister of the gospel is in a perpetual state of war. –Albert Mohler

Morning Mashup 08/13


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10 articles for your information, edification, and enjoyment. Happy Wednesday!

When Existence Becomes Seemingly Impossible – Alan Noble with a sobering piece on the reality of mental illness and depression in light of Robin Williams’ suicide. Noble writes, “What I want to say is that life is harder than most of us will let on, and probably the deepest struggles we’ll face will be silent and petty — things like choosing to get out of bed and get dressed. Sufficient for the day is the evil thereof, but so too is Christ’s Grace.”

Obituary for Robin Williams – Dave Itzkoff of The New York Times writes this moving obituary for the beloved actor.

A Generation of Pro-Choicers Wiped Out by Abortion – Research observes the trend of an increasing number of pro-lifers as a result of higher fertility among those against abortion.

Is Same-Sex Parenting Better for Kids? – Sociologist Mark Regnerus criticizes recent studies suggesting children of same-sex parents fair better than their peers.

Pray Fervently for Iraqis – Russell Moore: “As Christians, we should pray for the president and our military leaders to wisely administer the sword of justice.”

Iraq and the Risks of Inaction – Ross Douthat warns that inaction in Iraq is more perilous than action against ISIS. Douthat writes, “I don’t know exactly what the politics of the Middle East would look like if we shrugged, dropped humanitarian aid, and let ISIS continue its advance. But I’m willing to accept the risks of action, and accept the perils and downsides of continued hegemony, in order to avoid finding out.”

Deacon Run Churches: Are they Biblical? – Many churches are ran by deacons. However, is this a biblical form of church government?  Louis Love, Tony Carter, and Thabiti Anyabwile discuss the offices of elders and deacons in an interview over at The Front Porch.

Warfare Prayer – This is a helpful resource from David Sitton and To Every Tribe to help you more effectively pray for missionaries.

So How Did It Go Sunday? – H.B. Charles Jr with a tremendous piece to help the pastor’s heart following a sermon. He offers five helpful ways to measure the Sunday sermon.

Paul Tripp Resigns Position with Mars Hill BoAA – Tripp offers his reasoning for his decision to sever ties with this board.

Our love grows soft if it is not strengthened by truth, and our truth grows hard if it is not softened by love. –John Stott

Morning Mashup 08/11


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11 articles for your information, edification, and enjoyment. Have a great Monday!

3 Opportunities for Gospel Outreach in Public Schools – How can Christian teachers and churches engage public schools with the gospel under our current laws.

Even Ghengis Khan Didn’t Do This – The Islamic State is on a rampage to ethnically and religiously cleanse Iraq. They are proving themselves one of the most ruthless terrorist groups in history.

5 Things You Can Actually Do to Help Christians in Iraq – The crisis in Iraq is raging and is showing no signs of ceasing. In the meantime, here are five practical things that you can do to help.

How Should We Respond to Ann Coulter’s Article on the Ebola Doctor? – Matt Perman addresses the popular claim among Donald Trump and Ann Coulter that Dr. Brantly wasted his life serving in Africa. With so many problems in our own nation, is it foolish to serve the least of these across the world?

Tracking Christian Sexual Morality in a Same-Sex Marriage Future – Churchgoing Christians who support same-sex marriage are more likely to think pornography, cohabitation, hook-ups, adultery, polyamory, and abortion are acceptable.

Tolerate or Be Stamped Out – Erick Erickson: “Enormous energy is being expended by the left in America to make Christianity and Christians unacceptable… One thing is for sure — a faith that survived its followers being used as torches to light the streets of Rome will survive a modern age hell bent on ruthlessly stamping it out.”

The Right War – Ross Douthat: “So our intervention in northern Iraq has a limited, attainable objective: Push ISIS back toward the Sunni heartland, allow its victims to seek refuge in Kurdish territory and increase the Kurds’ capacity to go on offense against the caliphate.”

5 Reasons You Ought to Consider Buying the ESV Reader’s Bible – Denny Burk offers five compelling reasons for buying the ESV Reader’s Bible.

A Welcomed Breakthrough With Campbellsville – While it is encouraging Campbellsville is willing to come to the table to discuss the future relationship between the university and the KBC, the details of such a relationship are still unknown.

David Platt on Global Christian Persecution – David Platt sits down with Daniel Darling of the ERLC to discuss how the church should understand Christian persecution worldwide.

What Rory’s Rise Means – Rory McIlroy has won three PGA tournaments in a row, including two majors (The Open Championship and the PGA Championship). He is by far the best golfer in the world. Tiger seems to be fading, but the future of golf is bright with Rory leading the way.

Not [Christ’s] death alone..but his entire life was an act of self-denial, a self-offering presented by him as head in the place of his own. –Herman Bavinck

Morning Mashup 08/08


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Links, articles, book deals, and more for your information, edification, and enjoyment. Have a great Friday!

ISIS Systematically Beheading Children – Weep. Mourn. Pray.

A Time to Mourn – Christians aren’t the only ones being persecuted by the ISIS agenda to create a caliphate.

Leaving Ninevah – Historian Philip Jenkins speaks to the historic significance of the religious cleansing in Mosul.

Ebola Case Prompts Criticism – See Denny Burk, Andrew Walker, Russell Moore, and others respond to the criticism of the Ebola crisis from Donald Trump, Ann Coulter, and Ben Carson.

I Have Decided to Follow Jesus…Maybe – Why do some young people make a decision for Christ and then abandon the faith when they go to college? Parker Reardon offers a biblically and theologically sound answer, though you may not like what he says.

How to Keep the Spark Alive – Tim Challies: “Why do married couples have sex? And how can they ensure that they keep enjoying the sexual relationship throughout their marriage?”

4 Moments I’m Preparing Students to Face – I work with the children in my local church and I was helped so much by this article. As I continue to disciple children I will keep these four moments in mind.

Your Wedding is Still Something Worth Wanting – Marshall Segal offers five supernatural reasons to pursue marriage.

PGA Championship Leaderboard Day 1 – Rory is one shot off the lead. Although Westwood is at the front of the pack, all eyes are on the hottest player in the world right now, Mr. McIlroy. Tiger only finished with one birdie and finished at +3, nine strokes back.

Finally, Amazon’s Big Deal is back and there are some awesome Kindle deals available:

Taking God at His Word by Kevin DeYoung ($1.99)

The Insanity of Obedience: Walking with Jesus in Tough Places by Nik Ripken ($2.99)

Disciplines of a Godly Man by R. Kent Hughes ($1.99)

When I Don’t Desire God and Bloodlines by John Piper (both $1.99)

The Promises of God by R.C. Sproul ($0.99)

Transformational Discipleship by Eric Geiger, Michael Kelley, and Philip Nation ($1.99)

What is the Mission of the Church? by Kevin DeYoung and Greg Gilbert ($1.99)

What Every Christian Ought to Know by Adrian Rogers ($1.99)

Doxology and Theology by Matt Boswell ($1.99)

Grace is not opposed to effort, it is opposed to earning. –Dallas Willard

Morning Mashup 07/25


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7 Signs We May Be Worshipping Our Family – Leading a family as parents in the way of the Lord is both one of the most thrilling things and frightening things in the world. While parents are called to love their family, it is easy to fall into family worship, as in worship of the family. Jason Helopoulos offers seven signs that may indicate heading into worship of the family.

Being Single to Give God Glory – Owen Strachan: “We don’t live a single life as a man or woman to gratify our deepest urges or shirk responsibility. Whether single or married, we embrace the life God gives us in order to live it for his glory.”

Iraqi Christians Appeal to World for Help – My heart breaks for Christians in Mosul and I boldly stand with these suffering brothers and sisters even as they fill up the afflictions of Christ (Col. 1:24).

Two Ways to Reduce Student Loan Debt – Rick Segal of Bethlehem College and Seminary says their are two ways to reduce student loan debt: “their way and our way.” I love what Segal proposes and I tip my hat to this kind of vision for higher education. As a student accruing loan debt by the semester, I pray that such a vision would become a reality in many institutions.

The Hero Story – Jim Hamilton: “When we consider the Messiah in the Old Testament, our minds are confronted with the answer to the world’s questions, the fulfillment of all yearnings, the satisfaction of the universal desire for beauty and joy and peace and, and well, everything. You could say it’s Hitchcock’s McGuffin – something everyone wants, needs and looks for at all costs – but the McGuffin may not be profound enough to capture the weight of this, the real thing. Jesu joy of man’s desiring. Indeed. Jesus is the ultimate object of C. S. Lewis’ Sehnsucht – he is the one who fulfills the inconsolable longing for we know not what.”

Please Don’t Say These Six Things at My Funeral – While I hope my funeral is a long way off, I echo the sentiments in this post. I pray to one day minister to people who want God glorified a their funeral, rather than them.

“If our hearts and our minds pant like a hart after the water-brook of God’s deep mind, it may not be pride, it may be worship.” -John Piper

Morning Mashup 07/21


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ISIS Forces Last Iraqi Christians to Flee Mosul – NY Times: “By 1 p.m. on Friday almost every Christian in Mosul had heard the Sunni militants’ message — they had until noon Saturday to leave the city.”

When You Should NOT Submit to a Church – Jonathan Leeman of 9Marks carefully counsels Christians that there are certain situations when they should not submit to a church and its leaders, but instead should flee. His list of the characteristics of an abusive church and church leader is spot on.

Six Ways Your Phone Is Changing You – Tony Reinke: “What is life like now because of the smartphone? How has the iPhone changed us? These self-reflective questions may seem daunting, but we must ask them.”

To the Ends of the Earth – Check out this interview with professor Michael Haykin where he discusses his new book To the Ends of the Earth: Calvin’s Missional Vision and Legacy.

Cyclist Switches Tickets on Malaysian Flights – A Dutch cyclist says he was scheduled to be on both Malaysia Airlines flights MH370 and MH17 only to switch his tickets at the last minute. He calls it luck. I call it providence. Check out this amazing story.

Seattle Sounders Make a Wish Come True – The Seattle Sounders of the MLS made 18 year-old Xander Bailey’s wish come true. Bailey, who suffers from cystic fibrosis, started for the Sounders on Saturday and even took a shot from a Clint Dempsey pass. Don’t miss the full story.

The Road to Jericho and the Border Crisis – Russell Moore: “America’s southern border is engulfed in a humanitarian crisis, as refugees fleeing violence in central America, many of them unaccompanied children, seek safety. As Christians, we must recognize both the complexity of this situation and what it means to be people of justice and mercy.”

Revival is simply biblical Christianity allowed to be itself, taken straight, without inhibiting traditions or trends. –Ray Ortlund

President Obama Addresses the Nation on Syria


This is the full transcript from President Barack Obama’s speech on Syria, as provided by the Federal News Service (HT: Huffington Post):

Barack Obama addresses the nation on SyriaMy fellow Americans, tonight I want to talk to you about Syria, why it matters and where we go from here. Over the past two years, what began as a series of peaceful protests against the repressive regime of Bashar al-Assad has turned into a brutal civil war. Over a hundred thousand people have been killed. Millions have fled the country. In that time, America has worked with allies to provide humanitarian support, to help the moderate opposition and to shape a political settlement.

But I have resisted calls for military action because we cannot resolve someone else’s civil war through force, particularly after a decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The situation profoundly changed, though, on Aug. 21st, when Assad’s government gassed to death over a thousand people, including hundreds of children. The images from this massacre are sickening, men, women, children lying in rows, killed by poison gas, others foaming at the mouth, gasping for breath, a father clutching his dead children, imploring them to get up and walk. On that terrible night, the world saw in gruesome detail the terrible nature of chemical weapons and why the overwhelming majority of humanity has declared them off limits, a crime against humanity and a violation of the laws of war.

This was not always the case. In World War I, American GIs were among the many thousands killed by deadly gas in the trenches of Europe. In World War II, the Nazis used gas to inflict the horror of the Holocaust. Because these weapons can kill on a mass scale, with no distinction between soldier and infant, the civilized world has spent a century working to ban them. And in 1997, the United States Senate overwhelmingly approved an international agreement prohibiting the use of chemical weapons, now joined by 189 governments that represent 98 percent of humanity.

On Aug. 21st, these basic rules were violated, along with our sense of common humanity.

No one disputes that chemical weapons were used in Syria. The world saw thousands of videos, cellphone pictures and social media accounts from the attack. And humanitarian organizations told stories of hospitals packed with people who had symptoms of poison gas.

Moreover, we know the Assad regime was responsible. In the days leading up to Aug. 21st, we know that Assad’s chemical weapons personnel prepared for an attack near an area they where they mix sarin gas. They distributed gas masks to their troops. Then they fired rockets from a regime-controlled area into 11 neighborhoods that the regime has been trying to wipe clear of opposition forces.

Shortly after those rockets landed, the gas spread, and hospitals filled with the dying and the wounded. We know senior figures in Assad’s military machine reviewed the results of the attack. And the regime increased their shelling of the same neighborhoods in the days that followed. We’ve also studied samples of blood and hair from people at the site that tested positive for sarin.

When dictators commit atrocities, they depend upon the world to look the other way until those horrifying pictures fade from memory. But these things happened. The facts cannot be denied.

The question now is what the United States of America and the international community is prepared to do about it, because what happened to those people, to those children, is not only a violation of international law, it’s also a danger to our security.

Let me explain why. If we fail to act, the Assad regime will see no reason to stop using chemical weapons.

As the ban against these weapons erodes, other tyrants will have no reason to think twice about acquiring poison gas and using them. Over time our troops would again face the prospect of chemical warfare on the battlefield, and it could be easier for terrorist organizations to obtain these weapons and to use them to attack civilians.

If fighting spills beyond Syria’s borders, these weapons could threaten allies like Turkey, Jordan and Israel.

And a failure to stand against the use of chemical weapons would weaken prohibitions against other weapons of mass destruction and embolden Assad’s ally, Iran, which must decide whether to ignore international law by building a nuclear weapon or to take a more peaceful path.

This is not a world we should accept. This is what’s at stake. And that is why, after careful deliberation, I determined that it is in the national security interests of the United States to respond to the Assad regime’s use of chemical weapons through a targeted military strike. The purpose of this strike would be to deter Assad from using chemical weapons, to degrade his regime’s ability to use them and to make clear to the world that we will not tolerate their use. That’s my judgment as commander in chief.

But I’m also the president of the world’s oldest constitutional democracy. So even though I possessed the authority to order military strikes, I believed it was right, in the absence of a direct or imminent threat to our security, to take this debate to Congress. I believe our democracy is stronger when the president acts with the support of Congress, and I believe that America acts more effectively abroad when we stand together.

This is especially true after a decade that put more and more war-making power in the hands of the president, and more and more burdens on the shoulders of our troops, while sidelining the people’s representatives from the critical decisions about when we use force.

Now, I know that after the terrible toll of Iraq and Afghanistan, the idea of any military action, no matter how limited, is not going to be popular. After all, I’ve spent four and a half years working to end wars, not to start them. Our troops are out of Iraq, our troops are coming home from Afghanistan, and I know Americans want all of us in Washington, especially me, to concentrate on the task of building our nation here at home, putting people back to work, educating our kids, growing our middle class. It’s no wonder, then, that you’re asking hard questions. So let me answer some of the most important questions that I’ve heard from members of Congress and that I’ve read in letters that you’ve sent to me.

First, many of you have asked: Won’t this put us on a slippery slope to another war? One man wrote to me that we are still recovering from our involvement in Iraq. A veteran put it more bluntly: This nation is sick and tired of war.

My answer is simple. I will not put American boots on the ground in Syria. I will not pursue an open-ended action like Iraq or Afghanistan. I will not pursue a prolonged air campaign like Libya or Kosovo. This would be a targeted strike to achieve a clear objective: deterring the use of chemical weapons and degrading Assad’s capabilities.

Others have asked whether it’s worth acting if we don’t take out Assad. As some members of Congress have said, there’s no point in simply doing a pinprick strike in Syria.

Let me make something clear: The United States military doesn’t do pinpricks.

Even a limited strike will send a message to Assad that no other nation can deliver. I don’t think we should remove another dictator with force. We learned from Iraq that doing so makes us responsible for all that comes next. But a targeted strike can make Assad or any other dictator think twice before using chemical weapons.

Other questions involve the dangers of retaliation. We don’t dismiss any threats, but the Assad regime does not have the ability to seriously threaten our military. Any other — any other retaliation they might seek is in line with threats that we face every day. Neither Assad nor his allies have any interest in escalation that would lead to his demise. And our ally Israel can defend itself with overwhelming force, as well as the unshakable support of the United States of America.

Many of you have asked a broader question: Why should we get involved at all in a place that’s so complicated and where, as one person wrote to me, those who come after Assad may be enemies of human rights? It’s true that some of Assad’s opponents are extremists. But al-Qaida will only draw strength in a more chaotic Syria if people there see the world doing nothing to prevent innocent civilians from being gassed to death. The majority of the Syrian people and the Syrian opposition we work with just want to live in peace, with dignity and freedom. And the day after any military action, we would redouble our efforts to achieve a political solution that strengthens those who reject the forces of tyranny and extremism.

Finally, many of you have asked, why not leave this to other countries or seek solutions short of force?

And several people wrote to me, we should not be the world’s policeman. I agree. And I have a deeply held preference for peaceful solutions. Over the last two years my administration has tried diplomacy and sanctions, warnings and negotiations. But chemical weapons were still used by the Assad regime.

However, over the last few days we’ve seen some encouraging signs in part because of the credible threat of U.S. military action as well as constructive talks that I had with President Putin. The Russian government has indicated a willingness to join with the international community in pushing Assad to give up his chemical weapons. The Assad regime has now admitted that it has these weapons and even said they’d join the chemical weapons convention, which prohibits their use.

It’s too early to tell whether this offer will succeed, and any agreement must verify that the Assad regime keeps its commitments. But this initiative has the potential to remove the threat of chemical weapons without the use of force, particularly because Russia is one of Assad’s strongest allies.

I have therefore asked the leaders of Congress to postpone a vote to authorize the use of force while we pursue this diplomatic path. I’m sending Secretary of State John Kerry to meet his Russian counterpart on Thursday, and I will continue my own discussions with President Putin. I’ve spoken to the leaders of two of our closest allies, France and the United Kingdom. And we will work together in consultation with Russia and China to put forward a resolution at the U.N. Security Council requiring Assad to give up his chemical weapons and to ultimately destroy them under international control.

We’ll also give U.N. inspectors the opportunity to report their findings about what happened on Aug. 21st. And we will continue to rally support from allies, from Europe to the Americas, from Asia to the Middle East who agree on the need for action.

Meanwhile, I’ve ordered our military to maintain their current posture, to keep the pressure on Assad and to be in a position to respond if diplomacy fails. And tonight I give thanks again to our military and their families for their incredible strength and sacrifices.

My fellow Americans, for nearly seven decades the United States has been the anchor of global security. This has meant doing more than forging international agreements. It has meant enforcing them. The burdens of leadership are often heavy, but the world’s a better place because we have borne them.

And so to my friends on the right, I ask you to reconcile your commitment to America’s military might with a failure to act when a cause is so plainly just.

To my friends on the left, I ask you to reconcile your belief in freedom and dignity for all people with those images of children writhing in pain and going still on a cold hospital floor, for sometimes resolutions and statements of condemnation are simply not enough.

Indeed, I’d ask every member of Congress, and those of you watching at home tonight, to view those videos of the attack, and then ask: What kind of world will we live in if the United States of America sees a dictator brazenly violate international law with poison gas and we choose to look the other way? Franklin Roosevelt once said our national determination to keep free of foreign wars and foreign entanglements cannot prevent us from feeling deep concern when ideals and principles that we have cherished are challenged.

Our ideals and principles, as well as our national security, are at stake in Syria, along with our leadership of a world where we seek to ensure that the worst weapons will never be used. America is not the world’s policeman. Terrible things happen across the globe, and it is beyond our means to right every wrong. But when, with modest effort and risk, we can stop children from being gassed to death and thereby make our own children safer over the long run, I believe we should act. That’s what makes America different. That’s what makes us exceptional.

With humility, but with resolve, let us never lose sight of that essential truth.

Thank you. God bless you, and God bless the United States of America.