Archive for May 6th, 2009

Friends,

In my preparations for Sunday’s Lectionary readings, I came across this in David Jackman’s The Message of John’s Letters in the IVP The Bible Speaks Today series. The author is commenting on 1 John 4:20-21. I thought you might appreciate it:

“This final ground of assurance brings us full circle back to 4:7, where this major section began. When God’s love begins to fill our lives, he not only gives us a model of how we should live in our human relationships, but he gives us both the desire and the ability to begin to do it; to reflect his love others. Once again John reminds us of this most practical of all his tests of Christian reality. It is the easiest thing in the world to make a verbal profession of Christian commitment, or to say I love God. But if we do not at the same time love our brother and sister, it is a lie. Love for the unseen Lord is best expressed not just in words, but in deeds of love towards the Lord’s people whom we do see.

“Is this not one of our greatest sins as Christians today? We may talk a lot about loving God, we may express it in our worship with great emotion, but what does it mean when we are so critical of other Christians, so ready to jump to negative conclusions about people, so slow to bear their burdens, so unwilling to step into their shoes? Such lovelessness totally contradicts what we profess and flagrantly disobeys God’s commands. It becomes a major stumbling-block to those who are seeking Christ and renders any attempts at evangelism useless. In many churches and fellowships we need a fresh repentance on this matter, a new humbling before God, an honest confession of our need and a cry to God for mercy and grace to change us.

“Let us not avoid the plain teaching of Scripture. If we do not love those fellow Christians whom we know well and see regularly within our fellowship circles, we cannot be loving God. We may have occasional warm feelings, but these can be merely sentimental and unrelated to other people in their real-life situations. The proof of true love is not emotion or words, but deeds, which read out to help others in need. But the other side of the coin is that such practical caring love can be a wonderful ground of assurance. There is a divine obligation laid upon us all in verse 21. The whole law is summed up in the royal law of love and we cannot love God without keeping his commandments. His will is that we should reflect the image of our Creator, who is love, by our love for one another. Plummer quotes the words of Pascal: ‘We must know men in order to love them, but we must love God in order to know him.’ That is true, but John would insist that we add, Whoever loves God must also love his brother.” (131-132)

I really needed to be reminded of this today.

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Shreiking Harpy[Before we go any further, the title of this article is a direct quote from Ingrid Schlueter here.  Our aim is not to make light of this horrible crime committed against women, but rather to use a specific quote in context with its originator.]

“The online gang rape needs to stop.”

These words were written a little less than a month ago by Ms. Ingrid Schlueter of Slice of Laodicea (SoL – an acronym unfortunate, yet accurate for those under its malevolent eye), in response to an article written on another blog by a commenter (not a writer) on this site.  The primary response to this was that it was rather over-the-top and hyperbolic, as the article she was complaining about was not offensive (and had somewhat of a mea culpa included in it), but the thread she interrupted with her outburst was critiquing a Christian blog which insinuated that the electrocution death of an Emerging Church pastor was an act of God in response to poor theology.  Talk about straining gnats and swallowing camels!

“The online gang rape needs to stop.”

Far more so today than that day, though, these words are rather accurate, though they are best, and most appropriately, aimed at their originator

Two Fourteen Wrongs Do Not Make a Right

Colonial Slice of LaodiceaIn the past week and a half, Miss California, Carrie Prejean, has taken a good number of hits from the secular press for her answer to a question at the Miss USA pageant in which she defended the Christian stance, that marriage is only valid between a man and a woman. (As an interesting side-note, I saw about 5 minutes of this show – Ms. Prejean’s answer – while flipping through channels that evening.  My instant, and accurate, thought was “well, she just lost the crown for an honest answer”.)

Later, it was also revealed that when she was a teenager, she posed for lingerie modeling shots while topless (from the back).  So, it was also predictable that sins of the past cannot be forgiven in some corners of the church, and even if forgiven will never be forgotten, and will dog us to our dying days.  Not because the world remembers them.  No – because some in the church will never allow us to forget them.  Just ask Amy Grant.

What was not so predictable was that Christians (albeit a few nasty, yet vocal, ones) would would choose to pile on top of Ms. California and – instead of praising her for sticking to her guns on a biblical answer – vilify her for even being a participant on the stage where she gave her answer.  In fact, like a shrieking harpy dining on the misery of others, Ms. Schlueter has swooped in with no fewer than fourteen articles on the subject of Ms. Prejean and her immoral participation in this ‘carnival of flesh’.

“The online gang rape needs to stop.”

How true, how true.  But when vultures are in search of meat (noting that it was also Ms. Schlueter who cackled last fall that Ted Haggard was a “gift that keeps on giving”) and receive back pats from the main stream media, you can be sure that their cadaverous mouths will keep spilling their putrescent schadenfruede across the ‘net.  It seems that when women and/or sexuality are the topic at hand, the only difference between SoL and the National Enquirer is that the Enquirer has ethics it must adhere to – and if you are of the fairer sex and in the sights of SoL, you really are SOL.

Schlueter’s unhealthy obsession with Christians and sexuality is so well documented by her own poison pen, that one need look no further the SoL.  Whether it’s Ted Haggard’s scandal, or Mark Driscoll daring to preach from the Song of Solomon (which IS one of the books of the Bible, last time I checked), or churches teaching about sex, or “painted girls of sodom” following in the footsteps of Miley Cyrus, or a beauty queen attacked by the world for her Christianity, you can expect that Ingrid will be there, licking her chops, waiting for an opportunity to pile on, even if she has to quietly retract statements later.  But when is enough enough?

“The online gang rape needs to stop.”

Christians Fighting in the Press

OuroborosThe Apostle Paul tells us:

If any of you has a dispute with another, dare he take it before the ungodly for judgment instead of before the saints?

Now, the literalist will tell us that this is only applicable to lawsuits between Christian brothers. However, Paul continues:

But instead, one brother goes to law against another—and this in front of unbelievers!

The principle Paul is dealing with here is that Christians should not be using the systems of this world to duke it out in front of the world. In today’s society, where confidentiality laws, legal obscurity and closed courtrooms are actually more private than 2000 years ago, the press has come to the forefront as the public venue for duking it out. And so it is that Ingrid, swelling with pride from the mainstream notoriety she’s received for being a Christian willing to eat her own kind, seems oblivious to the mockery she has made of Christ and the sport she has provided in this modern coliseum.

Carrie Prejean’s teenage error, and her participation in a beauty contest are mere trifles in comparison to the trainwreck Ingrid has provided for the world (which desires to crush Prejean for standing up against the homosexual marriage juggernaut) to see and by which to be entertained.

This is exactly what the Apostle Paul was condemning the Corinthians for – and if we at CRN.Info were ever contacted by the MSM, I would hope we’d have the guts to consider the greater agenda of the world before we consented to being quoted. I will be quite happy if we never appear, or are quoted by, a secular publication.

But for Ingrid, the gravy train is coming home, and there are corpses to feed on.

Like a stopped watch that is correct only twice a day, Ingrid has given us a quote that is fully applicable and appropriate to this situation.  If only she will listen to her own advice:

“The online gang rape needs to stop.”

___________________

NOTE:  The following item recently passed my desk.  I’d decided to pass on it, but I think it’s much more appropriate now:

Is there any appreciable difference between these two quotes?

quote 1 : I refuse to answer emails from those complaining that this material [that I put in my post] isn’t suitable for Christians.

quote 2 : If  someone thinks [what I wrote] is an example of what I have decried, that person hasn’t understood what I am saying at all.

Don’t they both say, “if you think I’m wrong, that’s your problem”?

And if so, does that mean that John MacArthur is pregnant, too?

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