3 Pleas for Political Involvement

22 07 2019

I have grown disgusted by the political state in America. This disgust isn’t just with the world but with the way Christians have been dealing with politics. They have dealt with it largely in the same manner as those in the world.

Politics is based on division. Our side vs. their side. Our side is always right and their side is always wrong. This is not what Christians are called to be.

There is so much hypocrisy and vitriol coming from Christians. We act as though the Republican party is God’s party and the Democratic party is Satan’s party. We pretend our leaders are God’s servants while the other side is basically the Antichrist. This is not a Biblical view of politics.

We need to stop demonizing the other side and we need to stop deifying our side. We have to acknowledge when our side is wrong and praise the other side when they are right. I’m not proposing we pretend to agree but we need to talk like Christians.

I wanted to see if we can approach politics with a Biblical worldview and not a conservative or liberal worldview. How does the Bible say Christians should act? Let’s look at a passage of Scripture and draw a few conclusions.

Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work, To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men. For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost.” (Titus 3:1-5)

This passage really convicted me about the way I was acting as a follower of Christ when it came to my politics. Let’s go through it and see how we should behave as Christians.

1. Be subject to those in authority. (Vs. 1)

Of course when the law of man violates the law of God we are bound to obey the higher authority (Acts 5:29). We have a habit today however of only believing in submission to authority when “our guy” is in power. Christians regularly looked for reasons to disobey President Obama yet when President Trump took office they completely changed.

Obama was a tyrant and they called his administration a regime in order to liken him to an evil dictator. Once Trump took office all I heard were things like God ordained Trump and God appointed Trump. I agree with that statement, but God ordained and appointed Obama as well.

As a believer I’m not called to obey and submit myself only to Presidents I voted for but to all who are in authority (13:1). In fact by doing this we put our enemies to silence.

Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well. For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men.” (1 Peter 2:13-15)

2. Don’t trash talk the other side. (Vs. 2)

It’s okay to disagree and to make a case for those disagreements. What’s not okay is to demean, insult and name call the other side. I knew Christians who called President Obama “Emperor Obama.” I knew others ho called him “Obummer.”

Let me say that these are some of Trump’s staunchest supporters and now demand respect for the President. This is hypocrisy. The Bible allows us to disagree but not to malign other people.

We need to treat our political opponents as the image bearers of God, which they are. There is a level of human dignity that we need to uphold. Let’s face it, as Christians we are called to a higher standard.

Let’s also keep in mind that even our opponents who support evil laws (such as the murder of children through abortion) are deceived themselves. We should have some compassion for them. They are not the enemy, there are unseen spiritual forces at work behind the scenes and that is the true enemy (Ephesians 6:12).

3. Remember who you were before Christ. (Vs. 3)

The verse starts out with “For” another way to say it is “because.” So Paul is saying don’t malign these people because you were once like them. You and I were once deceived and serving the god of this world.

Why tear them down as though we were better than them? We aren’t and the reason we are different today is completely outside of us. It’s the kindness of God (vs. 4), given totally outside of anything we have done (vs. 5).

So when you approach politics, don’t run with the crowd. You and I are held to a higher standard, the Word of God. Behave like a child of God and put others to silence. We are not bound to the Republican party but to the Lord Jesus Christ.

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Blood on Their Hands

11 02 2019

I know many Christians got excited during the Presidents State of the Union speech this year. Unfortunately most Christians support “their party” regardless of what they say or do. There is so much bias on both sides in politics. We tend to support our party when in power then criticize the other party when they do the same thing that we did. This is one of many reasons why Christians should think twice about political involvement.

For me, I am not a Republican or a Democrat, I am a Christian. I must judge all things by the standard of the Scriptures whether that goes in favor or against my “assigned” political party. Too many Christians support President Trump without question because he is a Republican and they have been made to think that they need to support “their guy.” I am not one of those people. I feel the need to judge him according to the Scriptures.

I keep hearing people say that Trump is the most pro-life President in history. If this is true then it’s a sad truth because his pro-life stance very rarely goes beyond words. The State of the Union speech highlights that for me. He campaigned that he would defund Planned Parenthood and Christians (even those who claimed to not like Trump) said we have to vote for him to fight abortion. I didn’t believe it and I didn’t vote for him. I’m still proud of that.

In his first 2 years in office he didn’t defund Planned Parenthood. In fact he signed every spending bill that included PP funding. He was so dedicated to building his wall that he shut down the government to try and get the money for it yet he refused to close the government to save the lives of children. The Republican Party controlled both houses of Congress and the Presidency for 2 whole years and failed to stop funding PP which receives around 40 percent of their funds from taxpayers.

This is the same party that passed several defunding bills under President Obama which he vetoed. Why did they defund it several times under a Democratic president but couldn’t defund it one under a Republican? The truth is that they don’t want to defund PP. When they knew it would be vetoed they gladly passed the bill but if there was a chance it would get signed into law they didn’t. Christians need to get this in their heads the Republican Party is every bit as much for abortion as the Democrats. They only pay lip service to get your votes. These last 2 years are clear evidence of this truth.

At his State of the Union speech President Trump railed against the late term abortion laws in New York and Virginia. He said he wants to “…prohibit the late-term abortion of children who can feel pain in the mother’s womb.” Of course this devalues all children who don’t meet this criteria. All children are human beings and all from the moment of conception are distinct persons deserving of human rights.

The President also said that children are made in the image of God. I saw my Christian friends posting this quote with their own words saying things like “thank you Mr. President.” I found nothing to be thankful for in that statement. If he believes that why has he continued to fund the murder of these image bearers of God? Why not shut down the government to save them rather than build your wall? If he really believes that statement of course he is more accountable before God for allowing them to be killed, but I don’t think he believes that as much as he believes it will rally the pro-life community to keep supporting him which it did.

This president and this Republican party have no principled stand against the murder of babies. Don’t be fooled into believing such nonsense. A vote for them will be a vote for the continued murder of babies. The blood of the children cries out against this president and these in Congress. It will cry out against those who vote for them as well I believe. It’s time for action not words, and we as Christians need to realize that we are being used as political pawns. Over 60 million children have been murdered legally in America and in my lifetime Republicans have controlled both houses of Congress and the Presidency for 8 years with no attempt to end the bloodshed. The only attempts being made when they know it can’t possibly pass. Enough is enough.





School Shootings: Questions and Answers

26 02 2018

Much of the world was caught off guard by the deadly shooting at a Florida public school. Unfortunately much of the talk since the shooting has not been very helpful. Let me place a few disclaimers on here. I am not a pro-gun conservative nor am I an anti-gun liberal. I don’t buy into the our side vs. their side politics. I believe all political issues need to be examined in the light of Scripture not party rhetoric.

I’m not especially for guns nor am I especially against them. So my perspective is as neutral as I believe it possibly can be. I often joke that Republicans gave away my 4th Amendment after 9/11 so I don’t feel especially bound to protect their 2nd Amendment.

The liberal argument of more gun laws is not the answer since guns are not the problem. These guns have always been accessible and yet the shootings are a recent development. We need to figure out why in the last 20 years school shootings have become common but the last 200 years they were not. What has changed? When we figure out the problem we can figure out the answer.

Another problem with more laws is that laws don’t change anything. The same logic would say to end drug abuse just outlaw drugs. Yeah, they are outlawed and yet drugs are still a problem. If we outlaw rape perhaps rape will stop. Oh yeah, rape is illegal and yet they happen. It’s illogical to say that if we ban guns then gun violence will stop.

We also cannot lose sight of the problem of big government. The FBI knew of the threat and failed. We need to dismantle this oversize government that fails time and time again to actually protect us. We give up our rights for safety and end up less safe. Both sides of the political spectrum need to let go of this proven falsehood that government is the answer.

Conservative talking points are just as off base. The President and many others would have us believe that giving everyone guns would solve the problem. Many honest gun owners will admit that it is very difficult hitting a target. This is true on a shooting range with ear coverings and focus. Imagine how difficult with adrenaline pumping with panic and fear in the air?

I believe you would create more casualties. There is also the issue of licensing these teachers and maintaining their practice and their guns. If its required the guns would have to be provided for them and there is the issue of forcing teachers to carry. I believe in the Constitutional right to carry and the right not to carry.

The problem is found in the human heart. I’m not sure why the liberal even thinks school shootings are wrong. They have to borrow from the Christian worldview to arrive at that conclusion. If we are all animals then killing each other isn’t wrong. By having an issue they are admitting there is intrinsic worth in human life that does not exist elsewhere in creation.

If evolution is true then survival of the fittest would have to be considered. Their opposition to school shootings lies in direct opposition to the very foundational principles they claim to hold dear. The secular worldview is a maze of contradiction.

The cause of school shootings is not too many or too few guns so both sides are wrong. It is found in our teaching our children that they are just animals, life has no purpose or meaning and there is no judgment after this life. The secular worldview is the cause of this problem.

Why didn’t it surface until now? The answer is that over the last 50 years we have grown more and more humanistic that now the fruit is beginning to be harvested. We have taught them that they are animals so they act like animals. We taught them that there is no judgment so they act as though there is no judgment.

The answer is the Gospel. To teach our young people that they are created in the image of God which gives them worth. That they were created to glorify Him and that He will call them into account one day for their lives. That life doesn’t end at death but that eternity goes on without end. The answer is the Gospel and the solution will never be found in Washington or Sacramento. The pulpits of America and the God fearing parents are the solution. This can end if we get back to the truth and not the lies of secular humanism.





Pray for our Leaders

29 01 2016

“I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.” 1 Timothy 2:1-6

 

This is a great passage but one that has often been misunderstood. Often times when debating Calvinism someone will quote part of this passage. They will be quick to say, “For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.” They want to prove that all individual people can be saved so they lift this small portion from its context to make their point. This post isn’t to debate Calvinism but to demonstrate the problem with lifting verses from their context to prove a point.

Another common quote taken from this passage is at the end. When debating Marian doctrines with Roman Catholics we are quick to say, “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” The problem is that we seldom if ever consider what the passage is actually teaching. Why is it pointing out that Jesus is the only mediator? And in the first quote what is good and acceptable in the sight of God?

I believe Christians today are far too political. There is an unholy marriage between the evangelical church and the Republican Party. During the Presidency of Barack Obama it seems this relationship has disconnected all connection to the Bible. I have even heard believers tell me the Bible commands us to disobey this particular President. I easily criticize our leaders to the point of absolute hatred.

While Christians speak out against our President and leadership few if any are actually praying for him. I have even heard some wish harm or death on him. A few have said they hope he repents but that he should still suffer the consequences for all of his actions. I too once hated and maligned our President until I read this particular passage. There are many Scriptures which urge us to submit to and honor our national leaders but this one here is probably the most important.

Of course we never teach this passage in context so we don’t know what it says. This verse is a command to pray for our leaders. Why should we pray for them? The answer is so very important. Let’s look at the passage. The verse says to pray and intercede for all men. This of course means all kinds of men because if it meant all 7 billion people then I could never fulfill its demands.

The verse also says and this is noteworthy to give thanks for them as well. The next phrase points out one particular kind of person. It points out our leaders including the President. That’s right we are commanded to give thanks for President Obama because it’s ultimately God who appointed him as our leader. So we are commanded to pray for all kinds of men and the emphasis is placed on national leaders such as kings (or in our case Presidents) and all in authority.

The verse goes on to say that praying for our leaders is good and acceptable in the eyes of God. Why is it good and acceptable? Because He will have all men, that is all kinds of men to be saved including secular authorities. I’m not making a statement that God doesn’t want all people to be saved I’m simply pointing out the context of the passage. The “all men” in this passage clearly means all kinds of men by the context.

So back to why we pray for them. The answer is because God would have even oppressive tyrants to be saved and since Jesus Christ is the only mediator between God and men we go to Him to ask for their salvation. We don’t hear this taught in context because churches and church leadership don’t want to pray for the other political party. They want to criticize and malign. I fear deep down many don’t really want them to get saved.

The command is clear to pray for our leaders because God wants them to be saved as well and since there is no mediator but Christ we must go to Him with intercession on their behalf. So here is the question: have you prayed for the President’s salvation today? Will you tomorrow? Before you malign the President pray for him, I’ll bet when you do you’ll find it hard to malign because your heart will be soft and tender towards him.





Be Honest Political Christian

1 09 2014

indians

I saw this picture going around Facebook and was amazed how many of my friends were sharing it and I mean professing Christian friends. All of these friends were hardcore Republicans and using the picture to defend their support of anti-gun control policy. Let me state I believe in submission to the government except when a governments word violates God’s Word. The gun control issue is not a Biblical issue and whether you support or oppose the Second Amendment should not influence a Christian in any way. I am not a fan of guns myself so to me it’s a non issue. I don’t hunt and I would never advocate using a gun against somebody.

As I watched this picture constantly make it’s way into my Facebook feed I began to wonder about the honesty of it. The picture is comparing the incident with the Native Americans to the events of the school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary. The picture claims that Sandy Hook was not the deadliest school shooting because in 1890 the U.S. Government shot and killed over 290 unarmed people who had just given up their guns including 200 women.

Let’s put this under the microscope of truth. The incident is as follows according to history.com:

“On this day in 1890, in the final chapter of America’s long Indian wars, the U.S. Cavalry kills 146 Sioux at Wounded Knee on the Pine Ridge reservation in South Dakota.

Throughout 1890, the U.S. government worried about the increasing influence at Pine Ridge of the Ghost Dance spiritual movement, which taught that Indians had been defeated and confined to reservations because they had angered the gods by abandoning their traditional customs. Many Sioux believed that if they practiced the Ghost Dance and rejected the ways of the white man, the gods would create the world anew and destroy all non-believers, including non-Indians. On December 15, 1890, reservation police tried to arrest Sitting Bull, the famous Sioux chief, who they mistakenly believed was a Ghost Dancer, and killed him in the process, increasing the tensions at Pine Ridge.

On December 29, the U.S. Army’s 7th cavalry surrounded a band of Ghost Dancers under the Sioux Chief Big Foot near Wounded Knee Creek and demanded they surrender their weapons. As that was happening, a fight broke out between an Indian and a U.S. soldier and a shot was fired, although it’s unclear from which side…”

1. This was not a government issue gun control incident and should not be linked to such things. This was during battles with the Native Americans.

2. The massacre was not at a school which means Sandy Hook is still the deadliest. Conservatives hate liberals using Sandy Hook to advance gun control but conservatives need to stop diminishing the horror of it in order to argue in favor of guns.

3. The picture gives off the impression that the government took their guns planning to kill them as a warning that this may happen to us and that was not the case.

4. 290 is only an estimate and a high one according to some historians.

5. Whatever the number about half were women so the 200 number is probably bloated.

The incident is sad but it’s not what the political right has attempted to make it appear. It’s not even clear who started the event so to lay blame is to simply guess. In our day and age Republicans are very protective of the military. Whenever soldiers are accused of murdering civilians people and politicians get angry and jump to their defense and rightly they should. The picture says the U.S. Government killed them. It was actually the military…that’s right soldiers. The people who put the picture together know the the term U.S. Government is distrusted and hated by so many that to say the U.S. Government would bring more condemnation then to say the U.S. military.

My point is that if your politically active (which is your right) and your a Christian then you have a higher calling and responsibility which is to be honest. We must still act like Christ and honesty is right even when trying to make a political point. The problem in our high tech social media world is that we often fail to check our facts. We simply share anything that comes across our path that sounds good to us. We as believers must engage this world with honesty and integrity as servants of the Most High God. So my admonition to you is to be honest and just in all of your dealings with this world. If you want to fight for the Second Amendment then do it in an honest way making sound arguments not by twisting history and dishonoring the memory of those who have perished either at Wounded Knee or Sandy Hook.





The Border Crisis and Our Opportunity

25 08 2014

I have been spending a great deal of time pondering the crisis at the border. I was once a die hard Republican, a card carrying tea party member. Much to my shame at one time I would have just said to blow their heads off. I would have argued that they have no right to be here, they are a drain on our system and they are going to collapse the United States. I pretty much would have used all of the arguments I hear on talk radio today. The difference is that as I have matured in the Lord my Christianity has driven out my Republicanism.

Those who are hyper political see this through purely secular eyes. I have even heard it brought up in sermons where the preacher simply mentions the illegals as being dangerous to our nation. Let’s settle first thing first if we can. These are not your everyday illegal immigrants and they are not coming to America for welfare and a lazy life at least not the majority. So what are they? They are fleeing nations in South America that are plagued by tyranny, war, violence, drug gangs as well as poverty and disease.

They are being sent by parents who undoubtedly want a better life for their children. Can you blame them? Would you do things differently if you were in their shoes facing war, oppression, the constant threat of violence, lack of food and clean water and all the other things that can be found in South America? We welcome refugees from Cuba and grant them citizenship upon reaching our land and yet these who are fleeing the oppression and poverty of their own nations are used as a political tool.

Second of all is the compassion that we should feel for those in need. These who are coming are in need. They are coming from war torn, drug torn, nations and are seeking compassion. I don’t believe for a second the majority of these youths have ulterior motives. I believe they truly seek a better life. What are they met with? Howling mobs of protesters, and political commentators portraying them as leaches. I have even heard a few commentators refer to them as an invasion of locusts. That would make them pests and what do we do with pests? We destroy them is what we do. I have heard of so called militia’s taking to the border with guns. Is this the compassion of the Savior?

At some point we need to stop looking through political glasses and look through the eyes of the Bible. These are people fleeing war, poverty, violence, and want. They have no hope in their homelands. We live in a land of plenty that has all the resources these people lack and we who believe in the God of the Bible should share these resources with others. The Bible says of the sins of Sodom:

“Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.” (Ezekiel 16:49)

The Bible speaks of helping the stranger and sojourner:

“Thus saith the Lord; Execute ye judgment and righteousness, and deliver the spoiled out of the hand of the oppressor: and do no wrong, do no violence to the stranger, the fatherless, nor the widow, neither shed innocent blood in this place.” (Jeremiah 22:3)

“Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy.” (Proverbs 31:9)

We need to show compassion on these in the name of the Lord. Those who give to the poor lend to the Lord according to Proverbs 19:17. We need to shake off this mindset that what we have is ours, we earned it, go get your own. We need to see all that we have as coming from God in order to share with those in need. The only hope for these young people is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We need to see them and be moved with the Savior’s compassion.

“But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.” (Matthew 9:36)

We have before us the single greatest opportunity. One that past generations of believers would have given their wealth, freedom, and left arm to have. We have thousands of lost people from hard to reach countries coming to us. We could take up the task of sharing the Gospel and winning some of these youths then send them back to their own lands bearing the news of the Gospel. If we did that we could in a few short years impact millions of unreached or barely reached villages and souls with the Gospel.

Instead we are taking a political stand and using this God given opportunity as a weapon against the current Administration. We see them as “illegal aliens” not souls in bondage and darkness. We see them as a threat to our liberty. I have said before I would sooner see our Constitution torn to shreds and all of our freedoms taken away if only to reach these young people and the nations they come from. Here is our opportunity but what will we do with it?





The Whiskey Rebellion: History in Context

4 06 2014

In our hyper political world everyone is kind of pushed into one of two camps. Your either Republican or Democrat and by virtue conservative or liberal. The rules are that you are to oppose all of the actions of the opposing party, never give them credit even if they do good, and twist history to prove your points. The problem is that I as a Christian don’t feel such rules can apply to me. I answer to a higher authority which is the Word of God.

I believe Christians must be very careful when speaking of politics because we are judged by the Word of God. We must never compromise our spiritual principles for the political agenda of a specific political party. We must give honor to whom is honor is due Romans 13:7, we must honor the King (or President) 1 Peter 2:17. It behooves us to be honest and Biblical in our dealings especially where politics is concerned.

The sudden wave of anti-government libertarianism that is sweeping across Christian circles worries me. This idea that we can speak against our leaders because we disagree with them yet excuse our leaders when they do wrong simply because they belong to our party is blatantly false. While libertarians often quote our founding fathers I wonder how many of them would march against and condemn them if they were alive today. We need to take an honest look at history and the Bible in order to act as becometh Christians and patriotic Americans.

I was caught up for a time in the libertarian movement before I began to see that many of my stands and attitudes were simply wrong. My views of history were even slanted to fit with my philosophies. Take for instance the Whiskey Rebellion of 1791. This incident stabs at the heart of libertarian philosophy and really backs up the Biblical call to submit to government. I am going to use excerpts from Wikipedia and then comment on them as we go along.

“Farmers who used their leftover grain and corn in the form of whiskey as a medium of exchange were forced to pay a new tax. The tax was a part of treasury secretary Alexander Hamilton’s program to increase central government power, in particular to fund his policy of assuming the war debt of those states which had failed to pay. The farmers who resisted, many war veterans, contended that they were fighting for the principles of the American Revolution, in particular against taxation without local representation, while the Federal government maintained the taxes were the legal expression of the taxation powers of Congress.”

This was the first national tax levied by the national government of the United States and it was extremely unpopular. If put in the modern day under President Obama I’m sure Facebook, blogs and Baptist pulpits would be ablaze with criticism. Pictures of the President with a Hitler type mustache would be flooding the social media waves. The problem is that all of these libertarians who would be doing and saying such things would be holding President Washington in esteem and as an example of Constitutionalism and conservatism.

We don’t often associate him with such things as unpopular tax laws that people rebelled against. In reality most people in the libertarian and republican camps would probably have joined in the rebellion. They only hold Washington in high esteem because they didn’t live in that time.

These people were resisting an actual law that they felt unconstitutional. In our day we fear that laws may be passed and we put on fake days of resistance. Most of the concern over gun rights isn’t caused by laws being passed but by rumors started by gun makers to spur sales. They even put on a day of resistance where people went out in “defiance” and bought guns. I’m not sure what they were defiant of since buying guns is legal. All it was I suppose was an attempt to be an oppressed people.

So if Washington was this libertarian President everyone paints him to be surely he repealed the law and supported the right of the people not to pay taxes and supported their brave resistance right?

“Washington responded by sending peace commissioners to western Pennsylvania to negotiate with the rebels, while at the same time calling on governors to send a militia force to enforce the tax. With 13,000 militia provided by the governors of Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, Washington rode at the head of an army to suppress the insurgency. The rebels all went home before the arrival of the army, and there was no confrontation.”

Whether or not the tax was good it was the law and President Washington was willing at the point of a gun to enforce the law among citizens. If President Obama were to bring the military to a town to enforce laws he would be painted as a tyrant or dictator. Many of these were veterans and boy I can’t imagine what would be said about the President if he threatened military action against veterans. We take it lightly to defy our laws or ignore them if it pleases us and yet men like Washington who risked life and limb for this nation knew what it meant to submit to the laws whether you agreed or not.

We judge our modern President in unfair ways and hold up those who probably would have done the same things in their own time. We speak against our President as if he were our worst enemy or worse we accuse him of trying to destroy our country. These are the same actions that people who lived in the days of the founding father’s took. True patriotism is to obey and respect any law given by our leaders as long as they don’t violate God’s laws. even if you don’t personally like the laws. If you don’t like them then change them the correct way. True Christianity obeys civil government, respects authority, and submits to government.








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