No, really.  I honestly don’t get this post.

Short version:  Mark Driscoll will be teaching at the Crystal Cathedral (pastored by Robert Schuller).

Let’s set aside the fact that Driscoll has taught at the Crystal Cathedral before, making this event about as newsworthy as telling me that Albert Pujols has been known to play baseball.

The article goes into some detail about why they think that Driscoll is wrong.  It also goes into voluminous detail about why they think that Schuller is wrong.  And frankly, there are a few things in Driscoll’s belief system and a lot in Schuller’s belief system that I have problems with.  Further, Driscoll has even stated that there are some significant theological issues in which he and Schuller differ.

But nowhere is it stated in the LHT post how the two issues are related (except for some broad, fuzzy emergophobic statements).

I am reminded of the story of Paul and Barnabas preaching in Antioch in Acts 13:42-51" href="http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts%2013:42-51;&version=50;" target="_blank">Acts 13:

42 So when the Jews went out of the synagogue, the Gentiles begged that these words might be preached to them the next Sabbath. 43 Now when the congregation had broken up, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God.
44 On the next Sabbath almost the whole city came together to hear the word of God. 45 But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy; and contradicting and blaspheming, they opposed the things spoken by Paul. 46 Then Paul and Barnabas grew bold and said, “It was necessary that the word of God should be spoken to you first; but since you reject it, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, behold, we turn to the Gentiles. 47 For so the Lord has commanded us:

‘ I have set you as a light to the Gentiles,
That you should be for salvation to the ends of the earth.’

48 Now when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and glorified the word of the Lord. And as many as had been appointed to eternal life believed.
49 And the word of the Lord was being spread throughout all the region. 50 But the Jews stirred up the devout and prominent women and the chief men of the city, raised up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them from their region. 51 But they shook off the dust from their feet against them, and came to Iconium.

Let’s assume for a moment that there will be one unsaved person at the Crystal Cathedral when Driscoll speaks there.  I don’t think that’s a stretch, and probably something that the “Editors” at LHT would agree with.  Or let’s be even more optimistic, assume that everyone there is a Christian, but that God isn’t a total wimp and is actually capable of speaking to just one person at that church through Driscoll.

What kind of idiot would Driscoll have to be to pass up an opportunity to be used by God?

Now since I don’t have the gift of “discernment” (thank God), I can’t divine the motives and heart attitudes of the “Editors”.  But there seems to be a lot of similarity between the LHT post and the Jews’ attitude and actions in verses 45 and 50.

Every college student — bless his/her heart — is a potential politician, in that s/he can go on and on for long periods of time without ever actually saying anything.  When I was in college, we had a campus minister who used to occasionally say “and your point would be … ?”  It was an honest question, but also a gentle reminder that we had strayed off the ranch.

So I would post this same question to the “Editors” at LHT:  “and your point would be … ?”

HT to SoL, where Driscoll’s upcoming venue was referred to as “the apostate Crystal Cathedral”.  Last time I checked, a hunk of glass and concrete can’t be apostate.  But what do I know?  After all, I don’t have “discernment”.

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This entry was posted on Thursday, May 7th, 2009 at 10:48 pm and is filed under Commentary, Emergent Church, preaching. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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438 Comments(+Add)

1   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 7:27 am

If preaching a clear and unambiguous gospel is his motive then God bless him. But there are certain obvious nuances here.

First, Schueller is a heretic and I have never heard him preach the gospel at all, and he fired his son for being too doctrinally clear. So it begs the question as to why Schueller would consider Driscoll a safe guest. One also wonders how Driscoll views Schueller, not just the standard “I have theological disagreements with him”.

Would Driscoll allow Schueller to preach at Mars Hill? In effect, what does it really matter? We are all one big, happy family and usually your current view of a person’s ministry will not be changed regardless of any thing he does or words he says.

Chris L. used the phrase a “charitable reading” in a distant thread, and therein lies a great point. Whomever you choose to view charitably will receive a tempored assesssment of anything controversial, and those who don’t will receive a sterner judgment.

Driscoll uses strong arm tactics in his church and sets himself up as unquestioned leader, and many are not disturbed greatly about that even though there are numerous websites dedicated to former abused Mars Hill members and protests outside the church building by former members.

If Ingrid’s church had such former member websites, and if former members protested outside her church suggesting ecclesiastical abuse, it would be big news for us here. Subjectivity can never be achieved without recognizing it doesn’t exist naturally.

Mark Driscoll is all over the map with his ecclesiastical relationships, but who really cares? If you sort of like him it’s OK, if you have problems with him this is just more evidence. The sum of it is this:

If you do not interpret sections of the New Testament to indicate a spreading of false doctrine and false gospels, then you will not be concerned about these things.

BTW – Schueller has reformed roots so that may play a role. The Calvinists are always worried about sloppy Arminianism and well they should be, but there is a growing sloppy Calvinism that is equally as subversive.

2   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 9:24 am

Good points Rick.

In sales, we call it seeing through “Rose Colored Glasses.” Your boss asks how a deal is coming along, and because you choose only to see the good, and pay little attention to the bad, you say, “It’s great! I’m expecting it in this month.”

When you view the church or Christianity through “Rose Colored Glasses” you risk missing the mark just as badly as the Pharisees.

Falsity is rampant today more than ever before.

While jotting every tittle (100% pure doctrine, which is probably not possible) can take you off the path of the gospel, the prevailing theme in today’s church is unity at all costs is just as dangerous. “You believe in Jesus? Then we’re all together in this – no questions asked.”

That was not the theme in the early church. Unity was important, but not at the expense of “preaching another Jesus” or “another gospel”.

While claiming to be generous and taking the higher road (being for unity at all costs) we can easily fall prey to error.

Amazing how the first thing Jesus said (and then repeated 3 times in the same chapter) when his disciples asked about the signs of His return was: “Take heed that no man deceive you.”

3   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 9:25 am

By the way, that “deal” (comment 2) never comes in because you over-estimated the good and ignored the bad, which happened to far away the positive.

The point is to have a realistic assessment and not be afraid to call a spade a spade.

4   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 9:35 am

But, Rick, you’re just echoing the LHT post (albeit with actual content). There’s no real correlation between the two men/issues. Boil their post down to its essence and it comes out as:

Here are two men that we don’t like and they’re (gasp) going to be in the same room at the same time.

I have half a mind to talk about the time I got to meet Chris L and Zan, so there were three of us whackos in the same room at the same time. Apocalyptic!!

5   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 9:37 am

Rick (#1):

the question as to why Schueller would consider Driscoll a safe guest

One might ask why the border guards didn’t see the Bibles in Brother Andrew’s front seat. An extreme example, yes. But God isn’t restricted by human logic.

6   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 10:22 am

Brendt – the entire thing may be benign and void of any future compromises, but many such good intentioned cooperations end up down the road with some substantive deviations as it concerns the gospel.

Ask Billy Graham.

7   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 11:05 am

There’s no “cooperation”. Driscoll is not getting into bed with Schuller. Driscoll is going to a venue.

This instance is no more capable of creating “substantive deviations” in Driscoll’s theology than witnessing at a bar would turn him into a drunk.

8   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 12:49 pm

This is nothing but another example of a long-standing trait among ODMS — i.e., the inability to distinguish one person’s beliefs/teachings from those of someone with whom they might associate. We’ve seen this over and over and over and over….ad nauseum:

- If Person A is connected in any way with Person B, then Person A believes and promotes the same things as Person B.

- If Person A lectures somewhere that Person B lectures, then Person A teaches the same thing as Person B.

- If Person A does not vociferously condemn Person B, then Person A is actually endorsing Person B.

It’s Guilt by Association taken to the extreme. GBA is primary weapon in the ODM arsenal because it is so wildly far-reaching. You can actch just about anyone in the trap and accuse them of any number of things even if they personally have nothing to do with the particular problem being noted.

RA

9   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 1:26 pm

It’s settled then. Mark Driscoll is a glutton and a wine-bibber. ;-)

10   Mike    
May 8th, 2009 at 1:40 pm

wine-bibber: person who wears a bib so that when they drink too much wine, they don’t get it on their starched white shirt?

:)

11   Neil    
May 8th, 2009 at 1:53 pm

The point is to have a realistic assessment and not be afraid to call a spade a spade.

I agree, but being in the same deck with a spade is only GBA… instead of lamenting that he will be speaking in a certain location, LHT should wait to see what Driscoll says and react to it – assuming they can do so without their crap colored glasses that cause ADM to twist the objects words into an unrecognizable caricature as part of their discerning process.

12   Neil    
May 8th, 2009 at 1:56 pm

- If Person A is connected in any way with Person B, then Person A believes and promotes the same things as Person B.

if you look at ADM behavior it’s easy to see why they think this way. As soon as there was a disagreement between them they disassociate themselves with each other. In ADMdom you cannot dialogue without compromise. You cannot separate the baby and the bathwater.

13   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 2:09 pm

So, John MacArthur appears as a guest from time to time on CNN, and (apparently this week, though I’ve not seen it) Ingrid, as well.

Since CNN is a completely secular (and often hostile to Christians) entity, perhaps we should declare that “Ingrid Schlueter and John MacArthur have appeared at the apostate CNN.” Then, we can use all of CNN’s Christian-bashing and slanted news coverage as being condoned by them…

Yeah, that’s the ticket…

14   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 2:14 pm

Chris L, please stop drawing conclusions that make my original post look lame in comparison. ;-)

15   Neil    
May 8th, 2009 at 2:18 pm

I’m not sure a group that was never postate can become apostate – other than that the analogy is brilliant.

16   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 2:20 pm

#13 – a strawman eating apples and oranges.

17   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 2:23 pm

I think a better analogy/illustration than CNN would be to bring up all of Luther’s antisemitic statements — that way you can tar and feather a whole denomination with racism and catch a few ODMs along the way.

RA

18   Neil    
May 8th, 2009 at 2:33 pm

A brilliant strawman eating apples and oranges…

19   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 2:35 pm

And now we have this one at CRN:

Pirate Christian Radio is holding a contest. They will be giving away a copy of the book “Christless Christianity” to the first seeker-driven goat-herder who delivers a “sermon” or “bible study” based on the new Star Trek movie. PCR is also offering bonus points to any lead pastor that preaches a Star Trek sermon on Mother’s Day.

Goat-herder = false shepherd of flase Christians (unbelievers). Unbelievable. And I had so much hope for Chris R. after our wonderful interaction here.

RAbanes

20   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 2:38 pm

Don’t get it… isn’t there such a thing as a false teacher Abanes, or just not in your world?

21   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 2:54 pm

Paul,

Of course there are false teachers. Why would you ask something so absurd of me?

I’ve written extensively on false teachers. My whole ministry for years has been dedicated to truth, apologetics, defending the faith, discernment, and discussing cults, the occult, and world religions from an evangelical/Bible-centered position.

Want a few false teachers named? Sure…Joseph Smith, Oprah, L. Ron Hubbard, Charles Taze Russell, Jim Jones….the list is endless.

Want another one? Here…Robert Schuller.

And have a few more….Sabellius, David Koresh, Luc Jouret, David “Moses” Berg, Shoko Asahara, James Van Praagh…..keep going.

FYI, a false teacher is not someone you just happen to dislike, disagree with on non-essentials, or find to be inconsistent with how you like to personally see a message being taught.

Moreover, to refer to Seeker pastors as “Goat-herders” casts aspersions on the saving faith of literal tens of thousands of Christians and dismisses them outright as followers of Jesus. They are goats.

RAbanes

22   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 3:00 pm

Yes, Abanes, I’ve been to your website. Actually, this wk I read your few free pages on the history Mormonism and thought it was very insightful.

I am not necessarily looking for names, but by what criteria do determine a person is a false teacher?

23   Neil    
May 8th, 2009 at 3:08 pm

Don’t get it… isn’t there such a thing as a false teacher Abanes, or just not in your world?

This such a false dichotomy and unfortunate. To jump from comment 19 to the nonexistence of false-teachers is mind-boggling.

Here is what is wrong with the contest (assuming it is as rabanes posted (a link would help)

1) there is nothing sacred about mother’s day, so that is not even in play
2) if there are spiritual overtones in Star Trek that are biblical and can be used to illustrate a sermon – there is nothing wrong with employing them.
3) if a sermon is based on Star Trek as an extended illustration and/or metaphor – there is nothing wrong with that assuming biblical teaching is contained in it
4) not liking, or even pointing out the weaknesses of a certain type of church is one thing – questioning the salvation of any pastor who falls into that category is way across the line. I find goat-herd particularly offensive because it not only assigns the pastor to HELL, it assumes everyone in his church is going there as well
5) Seeker-driven is rather passe.

How’s that for starters?

24   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 3:16 pm

Neil #23: How’s that for starters?

Just when I thought I figured out the line between modesty and immodesty in the other OP, ya to THAT to me!! ;)

25   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 3:22 pm

How do I determine a false teacher? Perhaps I’ll do a blog post answering that (not like it hasn’t already been answered a million times by myself and many others). Read:

Orthodoxy & Heresy by Rob Bowman

Defending the Faith (by yours truly)

“The Essential Doctrines of the Christian Faith” Part 1 & Part 2 by Norman Geisler

Essential Doctrines of Christianity by CARM

That’s a good start…. :-)

RAbanes

26   Neil    
May 8th, 2009 at 3:24 pm

Also – it’s all about the method… just like Driscoll and the Cathedral… according to LHT he is guilty because he is there… according to Pirate Radio you are guilty if you use Star Trek.

BOTH of these ignore any actual content. The whole of LHT accusation is GBA, and the whole of Chris R.’s objection is method.

Now – if Driscoll goes all apostate at the Cathedral – then let’s accuse him. And if someone uses Star Trek and omits the Bible – give ‘em a book.

But I think the sin should occur before the guilt is assigned.

27   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 3:33 pm

Neil (#26):

But I think the sin should occur before the guilt is assigned.

That’s faulty logic (by ADM standards of “logic”).

1) God “assigned” us our guilt before we were ever born. Otherwise, Jesus wouldn’t have had to die for anyone born after His crucifixion.
2) Many ADMs state very clearly (though indirectly) that they are God.
3) Therefore, any ADM may must assign guilt before any sin is committed.

28   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 3:33 pm

Neil: it’s all about the method… just like Driscoll and the Cathedral… according to LHT he is guilty because he is there… according to Pirate Radio you are guilty is you use Star Trek.

RA: This was my very point in Don’t Believe Everything You Read on the Internet:

“….their attacks are based on things that have NOTHING to do with doctrinal teachings …. They base their attacks on:

- political views,
- methods of preaching,
- preferred styles of music/dress,
- different perspectives on various non-essentials of the faith,
- positions on eschatology,
- public friendships/associations they enjoy with certain believers/unbelievers
- certain verbiage used to communicate biblical truths

The targets of these Online Discernment Ministries (ODMs) are summarily labeled heretics, false teachers, deceivers, conspiratorial players in some Antichrist scenario, apostates, fake brethren who lead fake churches, compromisers, New Age sympathizers—the list goes on and on.”

I guess you can add “Goat-Herders” to the list of labels (as well as Star Trek Fans).

R. Abanes

29   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 3:37 pm

Besides which, pre-sin guilt-assigning is so hip these days.

How many thousands of words were wasted talking about how Rick Warren wouldn’t pray in Jesus’ name at the inauguration, days before the prayer was even spoken?

When Warren did pray in Jesus’ name, I wonder how many ADMs cursed in dismay. ;-)

30   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 3:41 pm

When Warren did pray in Jesus’ name, I wonder how many ADMs cursed in dismay.

None – they just redirected complaints for Warren saying Jesus’ name in languages other than English.

After all, if English (specifically the KJV) was good enough for Paul, it should be good enough for us…

31   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 3:46 pm

Here’s a curious thing…….

The advertisement for the Star Trek contest reads differently at Rosebrough’s website. Note the following variance:

href=”http://christianresearchnetwork.com/?p=10945″>Star Trek “Sermon” Giveaway Contest
(CRN)

Pirate Christian Radio is holding a contest. They will be giving away a copy of the book “Christless Christianity” to the first seeker-driven goat-herder who delivers a “sermon” or “bible study” based on the new Star Trek movie. PCR is also offering bonus points to any lead pastor that preaches a Star Trek sermon on Mother’s Day.

**********************

Star Trek “Sermon” Giveaway Contest
(Original at Rosebrough’s blog)

Pirate Christian Radio is holding a contest. They will be giving away a copy of the book “Christless Christianity” to the first seeker-driven “pastor” who delivers a “sermon” or “bible study” based on the new Star Trek movie. PCR is also offering bonus points to any lead pastor that preaches a Star Trek sermon on Mother’s Day.

Of course, we still have Chris placing the word pastor in quotes, which seems to indicate that he feels these are not true pastors at all. Chris, if you’re out there, I’d like to know:

- Was it you, or Ken, who inserted the “Goat-Herder” remark?

- What do you mean by putting “pastors” in quotes? Are they not real pastors, of real churches, over real Christians — or not?

RAbanes

32   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 3:47 pm

I assume that in the context of the early church false teachers were those who teach a false gospel of redemption. and since the Scriptures give no names, the application is subjective.

Chris Lyons is close, but because I respect Zan, I have shown grace.

33   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 3:56 pm

Mother’s Day Message

My Mother’s Prayers were Relentless, Like the Borg

My Mother Disciplined Me like a Klingon

My Mother Drove in Warp Speed

My Mother Read my Mind like Troy

34   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 4:02 pm

I think the issue with Star Trek is that it is becoming such a predictable trend it is almost laughable, so much so that some are predicting who will be the first buffoon to use it, and sort of surf on the coat tails of the “new release” (everyone wants to see the new release). The benefits are that you’ll be hip, relevant, up-to-the-second and you get to show a nifty trailer before a “deep” message on how it all ties back to the gospel.

From what I understand – and this is just heresay – pastors used to pray, read their Bibles and wait for inspiration from the Lord in order to feed their congregations with spiritual meat.

Fast-forward to 2009. Pastors are drawing analogies to Jason in Friday 13th who kill people in the bushes as a metaphor to their “sheep” to not wander too far from the fold.

I don’t seem to remember Isaiah looking for sermon material from Baal or Molech worshippers… I wonder why not?

Here’s the root of the problem – born out in prophesy by Paul:

“The time will come when people will not endure sound teaching, but will gather to themselves teachers to soothe their itching ears.”

35   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 4:05 pm

Chris L (#30):

they just redirected complaints for Warren saying Jesus’ name in languages other than English.

Well, yeah, they did. But only after a significant pause. It was a good 24-48 hours before they did anything. If they weren’t cursing, they were at least stunned.

36   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 4:07 pm

Paul – I get your point and it is very valid, however Jesus used many ordinary and everday activities to teach spiritual truths. Can you imagine a preacher saying he was going to teach on cleaning dirty cups and the early ODMs saying, “How dare he, why doesn’t he get his sermons from the Old Testament!”

Well Jesus used dirty cups to teach a truth.

The problem isn’t the object lesson, it’s what is actually taught.

37   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 4:16 pm

Yes, Rick. I absolutely get your point and I use metaphors all the time, as do those I listen to. Christ used parables as we all know, and as you say, the more “theologically inclined” probably thought it was a waste of time.

My point is to simply say there is a desperate trend to attempt to be cool, relevant and up-to-date that is pushing a lot of this junk. It’s called a ‘fad’.

I find this trend sometimes with Christians who grew up in the church their whole lives. They are so desperate to draw a distinction between themselves and the their “parents’ church” that they go to lengths to do so – a bit of an identity crisis maybe? I don’t know.

I don’t think a parallel between Christ using parables and pastors trying to pull a spiritual lesson from the latest Hollywood release is appropriate. That’s just me, I guess.

38   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 4:18 pm

BTW, I’m not saying that it can’t be done (using a movie).

I think the point of the ‘contest’ is to simply highlight these acts of desperation that are sweeping the church. I would think that you guys would catch this element.

39   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 4:19 pm

Paul C (#34):

From what I understand – and this is just heresay – pastors used to pray, read their Bibles and wait for inspiration from the Lord in order to feed their congregations with spiritual meat.

And then, as part of His inspiration, God would supply the pastor with an illustration from popular culture that the congregation would understand. And the pastor would reject it as “worldly”. And so God would let out a big sigh and go back to the drawing board.

Yes, riding the coattails of the culture is silly (and can be downright dangerous). But there is a subtle assumption (if not directly in this contest, than in CPR’s track record) that any use of popular culture is submission to it.

40   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 4:32 pm

Brendt, I don’t think there is a subtle assumption. To me it simply serves to highlight the silliness that has so deeply permeated the church.

Rest assured, in the coming days/weeks, you will have “creative strategy teams” sitting around a table watching the trailer (or better yet, the ’specially packaged preaching kit, complete with PowerPoints from the producer), jotting down all the elements parallels can be drawn from. The “Senior Creative Director of Relevance tailored to Youth Outreach” will be in front of the whiteboard jotting ideas furiously in multiple colors – blah, blah, blah… you get the point (then again, maybe not).

41   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 4:34 pm

P: some are predicting who will be the first buffoon to use it

RA: Exactly what would make someone a “buffoon” if they were to use a contemporary film as a point of discussion/teaching by way of extracting from it some scenes, dialogue, or plotlines that could be used to demonstrate any number of biblical truths.

Literature, film critique, and art have for centuries been the subject of deep philosophical discussion and religious expression. But to you it makes someone a buffoon?

Exactly what Bible verses would you point to in order to justfy calling someone a buffoon for merely extrapolating a biblical message based on an aspect of Star Trek — or for that matter, ANY film?
_____________
P: ….. The benefits are that you’ll be hip, relevant, up-to-the-second and you get to show a nifty trailer before a “deep” message on how it all ties back to the gospel.

RA: First, please show me the Bible verses that condemn as sinful, ungodly, or unbiblical the sinful nature of being ” hip, relevant, up-to-the-second.” Is that Bible-based or is that you-based?

Second, are you saying that you know for certain NOTHING in Star Trek — no plot, no dialogue, no attitudes, no philosophies presented, no ideologies revelaed, no characters — can in any way be tied back to the Gospel or biblical truths? If so, I would suggest taking some film critique classes at the nearest community college — or maybe just watching The Lord of the Rings.

Almost ANY movie can be used as a jumping off point for discusion on a wide variety of biblical themes – some easier than others, to be sure.
____________
P: ….. pastors used to pray, read their Bibles and wait for inspiration from the Lord in order to feed their congregations with spiritual meat.

RA: TALK ABOUT A LEAP OF LOGIC. I’m sorry, but I must be blunt. That kind of statement is just plain kooky.

How in the name of all that is hooy does extracting some poignant or thought-provoking aspect of a movie suddenly mean the pastor doing such a thing has ceased praying, readng their Bibles, or waiting for inspiration from the Lord?

Here’s a question: Ever think that God inspired them to use contemporary issues and pop culture subject/themes to preach s more people can be reached in a different way for a different era or a different generation? Ever think of that?
____________
P: “The time will come when people will not endure sound teaching, but will gather to themselves teachers to soothe their itching ears.”

RA: This is a horrendous abuse, misuse, and perversion of scripture that you are offering as am excuse/justification for condemning what you PERSONALLY-SUBJECTIVELY don’t like and feel uncomfortable about — and that’s the truth. This passage is about resoundingly false doctrines that lead people away from the one true God because those doctrines are not based on biblical truth. IT HAS NOTHING TO DO with using contemporary illustrations, lively presentations, or “hip” references. Stop perverting God’s Word.

RAbanes

PS. Star Trek is not Baal or Molech. Goodness.

42   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 8th, 2009 at 4:34 pm

Gentlemen,

I’d love to discuss this topic with ya’ll. It’s obvious we had a difference of opinion regarding ‘my methods’ but keep in mind that there are theological and doctrinal beliefs driving my methods just like there are theological and doctrinal beliefs that drive seeker-driven methods. In other words, methods are NOT theologically neutral.

1. The contest at PCR is purposely designed to be a reductio ad absurdum. On its face it it is designed to clearly and simply highlight the doctrinal / methodological problems of the seeker-driven movement.

1a. All Pastors are under a Biblical mandate to preach the word. This is not an optional methodology. This is not an optional duty in their Biblical job description.

2Tim. 4:1   I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: 2 preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. 3 For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, 4 and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.

2. That being said. I don’t have a problem if a pastor in exegeting and expositorily preaching a Biblical text uses an example from a movie to help the Christian believers in his church understand what that text means.

But more often than not that is not what is happening in these seeker-driven churches.

What truly happens falls into a few categories. Here are two.

The pastor in an effort to be relevant to the unchurched actually preaches about the content of a movie and tries desperately to dig out the “biblical principles” found in the movie. The movie, instead of the Bible drives the content of the message. Listen to my sermon review on Paul Wirth’s ‘sermon’ on The Dark Night. http://www.fightingforthefaith.com/2009/02/dark-knight-sermon-review.html

The pastor does end up preaching about the Bible (usually with disconnected out of context verses from multiple paraphrases and translations) but the marketing piece that he sent out to the unchurched people in his community inviting them to church amounted to nothing more than a bait and switch. The unchurched people showed up thinking they were going to hear a message about ‘about a movie’ but it turns out that was just a rouse to get them into church. I think a good example of this was the Slum Dog Millionare sermon I reviewed is a good example of this. http://www.fightingforthefaith.com/2009/04/what-would-jesus-tweet.html

As for the goat-herder moniker, I coined that phrase on my radio program for pastors who are great at attracting a crowd but don’t preach repentance and the forgiveness of sins in Jesus name. These are large ‘churches’ which have 53% of their members not believing in Salvation by Grace alone. (aka goats).

4. These goat-herding pastors mistakenly and wrongheadedly think that preaching ‘life change’ and convincing unbelievers to make a commitment to apply ‘biblical principles’ for improving finances, improving intimacy, improving job satisfaction or finding one’s purpose is how you grow the Kingdom of God.

These goat-herding pastors reject their Biblical job duty which is to care and feed God’s sheep. Rather than feeding God’s sheep these guys waste their time making Goats more satisfied with their lives. I recommend listening to this sermon review to get the gist of what this looks like.

http://www.fightingforthefaith.com/2009/04/another-seeker-church-is-in-hot-water-of-sex-sermons.html

The biblical message that the Church has been given to proclaim is NOT “live long and prosper” (which is what far too many seeker-driven sermons boil down to) it is repentance and the forgiveness of sins in Jesus name.

43   M.G.    
May 8th, 2009 at 4:41 pm

How is that a reductio ad absurdem?

44   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 4:43 pm

Chris – Your particular brand of Lutheranism is showing. I have been in a large megachurch as I listened to what I considered a goofy message, only to hear that same preacher give a strong gospel message and call sinners to forsake themselves and believe and follow Jesus Christ.

God works His will sovereignly, you would know that if you would forsake your pride and read Calvin. :cool:

45   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 4:48 pm

Abanes – you’re reminding me of iggy here…

I have said that I have no problem with analogies being drawn and even a movie reference thrown in – go for it. I suggest re-reading my comments to get the gist of my argument.

What we are seeing are desperate attempts – however well-intentioned – to ride the coat-tails of a newly released movie (like how McDonald’s and Coca-Cola do when a movie like Shrek comes out).

Also, the scripture reference (Timothy) is a perfect match.

Paul tells Timothy to preach the word, regardless of how you feel or how it is received.

WHY?

Because the time will come (it’s been here for a while) when people just won’t tolerate the word of God. Instead you’ll have to give them a steady diet of entertainment and things that make them laugh (basically constantly catering to the flesh). But guess what? There’s an endless supply of preachers who are ready to do just that.

46   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 4:48 pm

Chris R (#42):

I don’t have a problem if a pastor in exegeting and expositorily preaching a Biblical text uses an example from a movie to help the Christian believers in his church understand what that text means.

There is certainly a line between what’s driving the message — the Bible or the movie. But part of where that line exists lies in the motivations and heart of the pastor.

Seeing as how there’s only One Who can read the heart, it seems that the line should be defined by Him.

But the very existence of this contest demands that a human draw the line. Because — sure as God made little green apples — somebody (who thinks that Jesus died so that we could be irrelevant) is going to “nominate” a sermon that doesn’t cross the line (i.e. something with which you have no problem, by your earlier definition).

And a human is going to have to make that call. And it’s only going to be based on where that human drew that line.

47   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 4:50 pm

And Rick, you are right. God somehow can cut through all and perform His will in spite of us.

48   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 4:51 pm

Turn on your average Christian preacher on TV and see an array of goofiness, heresy, hucksterism, and very little gospel.

Although Rick Warren stretches things sometimes, he does make effective use of object lessons. Hybels tells a story of how he thought he had to be much better at racket ball than a certain old guy, so he signed up for the tournament. The old guy crushed him.

His point was we think we are much better befor God than we really are.

49   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 8th, 2009 at 4:52 pm

Rick,

Your particular brand of Lutheranism is showing.

I always find that retort to be very shallow. What is peculiarly “Lutheran” about the critique I’ve offered?

Also, not bragging here but, I’ve reviewed hundreds of seeker-driven “sermons” on my radio program (listened to and screened thousands from churches across the country and the world.) I know what I am talking about.

If you disagree rather than brush what I am saying aside, LISTEN to my reviews and interact with the CONTENT of these real sermons and the actual substance of my critiques.

50   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 8th, 2009 at 4:56 pm

Bredt,

Yes… I have drawn a line and the line I’ve drawn is based on my expertise in this area. I stand by the line that I’ve drawn.

As for the heart matter. I assume that the men employing these seeker-driven methods have a zeal for reaching the lost but the methods they put their trust in are faulty and contradict God’s word. In other words, they’ve bought a lie.

51   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 5:01 pm

Chris – I did not mean that as a slight, just an observation. This phrase “repentance and the forgiveness of sins in Jesus name” is a way to communicate the gospel that is sometimes particular to certain corners of Christianity.

“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ” can also be used, as well as many others. I have noticed that phrase repeated on your blog. It’s all good except nowhere on Extreme Theology did I see Mary mentioned.

52   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 8th, 2009 at 5:04 pm

Rick,

I didn’t take it as a slight.

As for “repentance and the forgiveness of sins”. That is not a peculiar denominational description.

Luke 24:46 and [Jesus] said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, 47 and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.

In far too many seeker-driven churches there is no mention of repentance or the forgiveness of Sins in Jesus name. This is not a denominational critique this is a Christian critique based on fact.

53   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 5:09 pm

I knew you would say that, Chris. I will allow you your particular linguistic communication, even though a scholar like yourself is well aware that we can all pull out a particular verse and claim those words must be employed.

Paul’s was very light on the kind of repentance you suggest since he, like I, contend repentance is inherant in believing on Christ.

54   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 8th, 2009 at 5:14 pm

Chris R (#50):

Yes… I have drawn a line

5000 points for honesty.

55   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 8th, 2009 at 5:17 pm

Rick,

The issue is that the re-tool seeker-friendly gospel doesn’t condemn sins or call people to repentance. There is no contrition or sorrow for sins and as a result there is little or no context for the Biblical gospel message that ‘Christ died for our sins’.

Seeker-Driven methodology works off the idea that people can be MORE satisfied with their lives if they try to live it according to Biblical principles. The seeker gospel doesn’t talk about God’s wrath against sinners but instead tries to convince people that God really wants you to be happier than you’ve ever dreamed possible but you can never get to that level of happiness unless you agree to do it God’s way.

They don’t preach the Good News of the Gospel instead they preach the ‘good advice’ of life coaching and self improvement.

People who come to God looking for principles to apply to make their lives more satisfying have no need or concept of ‘repentance and the forgiveness of sins’.

As a result they have no concept what Biblical Christianity is all about. That is why the the majority of the people who are MEMBERS of these churches don’t believe in salvation by Grace or that the Bible is the innerant word of God or that Salvation is ONLY found in Jesus Christ.

This is a preaching problem. And the reason why these sermons don’t convey the actual Biblical Christian faith is because of the methodology these pastors have bought into.

Methods are NOT theologically neutral.

56   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 8th, 2009 at 5:18 pm

Brednt,

How many more points do I need in order to earn a Mr. Spock toothbrush?

57   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 5:20 pm

Speaking of Star Trek, I am at this point reminded of the episode Where No Man Has Gone Before, Season 1 Episode 3. In that episode,

“Kirk notices a strong personality change in his good friend, Lieutenant Gary Mitchell, whose latent psionic abilities are heightened by the force field. Soon Mitchell has gained enormous extrasensory powers, displaying many talents which include moving objects with his mind and controlling his own heart rate.”

Mitchell comes to the conclusion that he is basically becoming a God, with the authority to judge who should live and who should die, he feels his judgments are the only right judgments, and he revels in his notion that he’s advanced in intellect far beyond other mere mortals.

Near the end of the episode, Kirk and Mitchell battle it out, and during that fight, for one brief moment the old Gary Mitchell is back — his eyes become normal again, his voice softens, he sees Kirk as his long-lost friend, and is a bit confused as to why Kirk is standing above him with a rock. Just before Kirk kills him, he says, “Gary, Forgive me.”

But suddenly, Mitchell’s eyes glaze over again, his hatred comes back, his delusions of grandeur, and he once again becomes Kirk’s enemy.

Sigh….

R. Abanes

PS In the end, Gary is killed. Ouch.

58   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 8th, 2009 at 5:25 pm

Richard,

I appreciate the cautionary tale from Star Trek. But that is not what is happening here.

I have calmly and rationally and Biblically laid out my case. If you disagree with me then interact with the substance of my critique and position.

Let’s have a conversation about ideas rather than people. Unfortunately, your Star Trek cautionary tale changes the subject from ideas to me. I think that is a step backward.

59   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 5:41 pm

Matt. 7:6
“Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and then turn and tear you to pieces.”

Proverbs 1:7
…fools despise wisdom and discipline.

Proverbs 12:1
…he who hates correction is stupid.

Proverbs 15:12
A mocker resents correction; he will not consult the wise.

Proverbs 17:10
A rebuke impresses a man of discernment more than a hundred lashes a fool.

Proverbs 18:2
A fool finds no pleasure in understanding, but delights in airing his own opinions.

Proverbs 26:4
Do not answer a fool according to his folly, or you will be like him yourself.

60   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 8th, 2009 at 5:58 pm

Richard,

So I am a fool who hates correction and is stupid because I think there are serious Biblical problems with the methods and messages of seeker-driven churches.

Hmmm…you don’t think that is even a tad over stated? I do.

Ironically, I’ve invited discussion based on the ideas. That’s hardly the behavior of someone who despises wisdom and correction.

61   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 6:05 pm

Chris – Just as a personal narrative, I was not the slightest bit sorry about my sins when I was born again. I was dramatically awakened the reality of the Risen Christ, and in a moment that cannot be described by words, I was transformed. The sins in which I was engaged began to be exposed and rejected during the coming months, but my overwhelming experience was of intense love and the breathtaking realization that God was Jesus and Jesus was God.

I never thought of my sins which were many, many, many. I think much more about my sins now than I ever did back in March, 1975. I guess that means that God’s Spirit is not bound to any construct, and although there are gospel particulars that are indespensible to the message, the Spirit can and does work through things that are not on our theologically approved list.

62   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 6:14 pm

Chris,

You have always asked, rather pointed, for scripture references, scripture references, scripture references…..so now I give you scripture references — but now you don’t like it. Sorry. :-( I didn’t write those passages, God did.

I’ve discussed these issues with you repeatedly, outlining where you are incorrect on a number of points: 1. in person at breakfast, 2. on the telephone, and 3. in several emails. You’re not interested.

Gretchen Passantino-Cobern — one of your own mentors — has sought to discuss these issues with you and bring correction. You’re not interested.

Consequently, I find those passages to be applicable to someone who is not interested in the way you are not interested.

SO, I’ve let God do my talking for me. I thought you’d appreciate me using scripture to express myself. If you don’t like it…I’m sorry. It’s God’s Word. Are you saying you don’t love and honor God’s Word and appreciate its use by someone seeking to simply allow scripture to speak for them?

RA

63   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 6:16 pm

By the way, Chris, I am so much more concerned over your sin than my own. :cool:

I do appreciate a frank and forthright discussion. I grow.

64   Joe    http://joemartino.name
May 8th, 2009 at 6:21 pm

SO, I’ve let God do my talking for me

Welcome to the world of ADM/EDM/ODM…whatever you call it, you’re there.

65   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 6:28 pm

J: Welcome to the world of ADM/EDM/ODM…whatever you call it, you’re there.

RA: LoL Hardly.

I didn’t say I speaking for God (The ODM modus operandi). I didn’t say God was judging Chris. I didn’t say Chris was not a Christian. I didn’t say anything false about Chris’s beliefs or views. And I didn’t call him some juvenile name to mock him.

I said that I’d found scriptures which accurately summed up my feelings on the current issue, specifically in light of my past interaction with Chris on a personal level.

There’s just nothing more to say. It’s all been said.

These scriptures merely reflect my perspective on what has transpired and the course of action one should take, according to God’s Word, when faced with someone who has shown they are not interested. Pretty simple.

RA

66   Joe    http://joemartino.name
May 8th, 2009 at 6:35 pm

There’s just nothing more to say. It’s all been said.

Should have gone with that one first.

67   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 6:39 pm

JOE: Should have gone with that one first.

RA: I would have been more than happy to just go with: “There’s just nothing more to say. It’s all been said.”

But I didn’t do that because Chris, in our previous interactions, has always asked me for multiple scriptures to either:

a ) prove my point; or

b ) justify my personal position.

I simply obliged him this time before he asked. :-)

RA

68   room2blog    http://room2blog.wordpress.com
May 8th, 2009 at 6:43 pm

Richard, what’s up with you? Chris is up for an honest discussion and you’re tearing into him? What’s happening in Online discernment? Chris R being nice, Iggy jetting off on an anti-Ingrid-rant and rabanes prooftexting in a way that would Ken Silva proud…

69   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 8th, 2009 at 6:45 pm

Hmmm… let’s see. You’re interacted with one of the dreaded ODMs right now in this thread. He puts forth thoughtful statements, though you are within rights to disagree.

Yet it is Abanes who has turned to the terror of the ODM MO to make his case, however poorly, drawing on hyperbole, misplaced scriptures and so on… Interesting to observe.

SO, I’ve let God do my talking for me

That’s absolutely classic – the TRUMP CARD. Got a good chuckle from that one. In fact, whenever I’m not making headway in any conversations going forward, that’s the line I’ll employ. Be forewarned.

70   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 6:58 pm

“I’ve let God do my talking for me”

Nope, God has instructed me to speak for Him. :cool:

Sometimes you guys are goofy. :lol:

71   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 7:00 pm

:-)

1. Chris is up for an honest discussion

As noted, an “honest” discussion that he and I have had already many times….

2. you’re tearing into him..

Uh, “tearing” into him simply by saying he’s not interested in my thoughts since he’s already rejected them? Okay. So, basically what you’re saying is I can’t use those particular scripture anymore in my Bible? Is that what you’re saying?

Chris R being nice

Yes, this is very nice: “These goat-herding pastors reject their Biblical job duty which is to care and feed God’s sheep. Rather than feeding God’s sheep these guys waste their time making Goats more satisfied with their lives.” And he applies to a veritable cornucopia of pastors all over the world.

rabanes prooftexting in a way that would Ken Silva proud…

Actually, that wasn’t proof-texting. I quote from The Princess Bride: “I odn’t think that means what you think it means” (Inigo Montoya)

….it is Abanes who has turned to the terror of the ODM MO to make his case, however poorly, drawing on hyperbole, misplaced scriptures and so on… Interesting to observe.

I explained this. The scriptures used are perfectly applicable. If I had never spoken to Chris before about this issue, or previously discussed his errors on the topic, THEN I would be acting like an ODM by using them. See the difference?

RA

72   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 8th, 2009 at 7:08 pm

PAUL: the TRUMP CARD. Got a good chuckle from that one.

RA: Read again. Save the chuckle. Let’s see if you get it this time:

I’d found scriptures which accurately summed up my feelings on the current issue, specifically in light of my past interaction with Chris on a personal level. There’s just nothing more to say. It’s all been said. These scriptures merely reflect my perspective on what has transpired and the course of action one should take, according to God’s Word, when faced with someone who has shown they are not interested. Pretty simple.”

See? Easy-peezy. :-)

RA

73   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 9:30 pm

Chris R. I feel sorry for you I really do. You have such a small view of God’s ability to work through any situation despite what we humans do.

Like Rick F. my salvation came via what many would call a lesser man of God even to the point that many would question his salvation. An yet here I am a full five pointer,

Jesus is both God and man
Jesus rose from the dead physically
Salvation is by grace through faith
The Gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus according to the Scriptures
There is only one God.

That’s all that matters……

That man didn’t teach me these things but despite who he may have been I was able learn these things and outgrow what he was. Without warning from anyone that, he was apostate, a heretic, and/or goat herder. Why? Because God is bigger than any of us combined and he can do what he does despite of you, me and even Rick F.

If we even take Calvin(I’m not a Calvinist) at face value, God is going to pull people out of wherever or whatever they are in. I don’t understand the angst!

You need to let it go, God is control Brother. Your doing more damage than you are doing good to the Body Of Christ.

That from an non seeker sensitive, non emergent, non goat herder, non Star Trek type!

What you offer as fact I see only as opinions as to the way YOU think things should be.

Chris R. It’s obvious we had a difference of opinion regarding ‘my methods’ but keep in mind that there are theological and doctrinal beliefs driving my methods

Interpretation? I’m right

Chris R.These are large ‘churches’ which have 53% of their members not believing in Salvation by Grace alone. (aka goats).

Wonders how you possibly know such thing……only God knows these answers.

Rick F. Your particular brand of Lutheranism is showing.

I agree, I was once Concordia and was heading for hell…

Rick F. . I have been in a large megachurch as I listened to what I considered a goofy message, only to hear that same preacher give a strong gospel message and call sinners to forsake themselves and believe and follow Jesus Christ

.

As have I and I’ve seen much the same.

Chris R: Yes… I have drawn a line and the line I’ve drawn is based on my expertise in this area. I stand by the line that I’ve drawn.

Doesn’t leave much room for debate does it….

Chris R. As for the heart matter. I assume that the men employing these seeker-driven methods have a zeal for reaching the lost but the methods they put their trust in are faulty and contradict God’s word. In other words, they’ve bought a lie.

In your opinion….

#55 conjecture, Chris R.

74   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 9:53 pm

“That man didn’t teach me these things but despite who he may have been I was able learn these things and outgrow what he was. Without warning from anyone that, he was apostate, a heretic, and/or goat herder.”

Scotty – that my friend was a profound theological statement that contains much more of the sovereignty of God than most who tout His sovereignty. The Spirit moves where He wills, and sometimes He moves in places where our limited perspectives say He cannot.

75   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 8th, 2009 at 10:18 pm

Scotty,

You have such a small view of God’s ability to work through any situation despite what we humans do.

Can we unpack that statement?

I believe that God is omnipotent and omnipresent.

However, I do not believe that God saves people through false religions. The omnipotent God revealed in the scriptures doesn’t save people in Islam through the message of Islam. This does not mean that I have a ’small view of God’.

I also agree with you that…

Jesus is both God and man
Jesus rose from the dead physically
Salvation is by grace through faith
The Gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus according to the Scriptures
There is only one God.

However, I STRONGLY disagree with your your claim that’s all that matters.

Here’s why. Those doctrines also need to be preached by pastors.

It is a fact that MOST if not ALL Mainline Liberal church bodies have ORTHODOX doctrinal statements and claim to believe in ORTHODOX confessions of faith like the Westminster Confessions or the Book of Concord.

But NONE of these Mainline Liberal Congregations preach the orthodox Christian faith in their pulpits.

SO, it’s not enough that those Liberal congregations pay lip service to those doctrines and affirm that they are true. If they really believed they were true they teaching, preaching and proclaiming orthodox Christian doctrine and teaching from their pulpits.

From my research, and I listen to thousands of seeker-driven sermons every year, Seeker-Driven sermons have much more in common with Mainline Liberal sermons than with orthodox Christian sermons. If you don’t believe me, listen to my program for three weeks.

76   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 8th, 2009 at 10:32 pm

Sinners get saved under seeker-sensitive preachers.

Sinners get saved under health and wealth preachers.

Sinners get saved under emergent preachers.

Sinners get saved under purpose driven preachers.

Sinners get saved under all kinds of less than perfect gospel presentations. We should strive to be Biblical, but we should not discount completely flawed preachers and messages.

77   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 8th, 2009 at 10:45 pm

Rick Freuh,

Sinners get saved by the preaching of the true Gospel. They do not get saved by false or non-existent gospels.

Gal. 1:6   I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— 7 not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.

Tell ya what…

I reviewed the 1st Star Trek Sermon of the season today. See if you can spot the ‘gospel’ in this sermon.

http://www.fightingforthefaith.com/2009/05/star-trek-sermon-review.html

78   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 12:05 am

I will forgive the mispelling of my name, however, sinners get saved by the regeneration of the Holy Spirit. Sinners were saved under a legalist like Finney, and an Arminian like Billy Graham, and a Calvinist like Edwards, all whom presented the gospel in different ways.

No one has ever presented the gospel perfectly. No one.

79   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 9th, 2009 at 12:34 am

Rick : Sinners get saved under

Chris R : [Sinners] don’t get saved by

Rick made no such claim. Did somebody miss the Schoolhouse Rock episode about prepositions?

80   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 12:45 am

Brendt – to suggest only a perfect (or what I see as perfect) presentation of the gospel can be used of God to save a person is really arrogant and ignoring the mutitude of evidence. Read Finney, Moody, Wesley, Graham, Edwards, Whitefield, and a long list of famous preachers who all spoke the gospel in different ways.

All of them saw sinners saved under their preaching. The verse from Luke that Chris quotes is not quoted verbatim anywhere else in the New Testament, and must that verse be quoted in the King James only?

It is absurd to suggest that certain terminology is the only way to salvation. It is a denominational construct and linguistic addiction that usually leads to gospel self righteousness.

81   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 3:18 am

Sinners get saved by the preaching of the true Gospel. They do not get saved by false or non-existent gospels.

Wrong…

Sinners are saved by the Word of God… He speaks salvation through the finished works of Jesus and we are saved by Grace through faith as we respond to God’s kindness that leads us to repentance.

We do not save anyone by preaching, in fact that is the opposite Paul writes about in Romans.. If by our preaching people are saved, then it is by our works and not of Grace through Faith in Christ and the Word of God…

Look at that phrase…”Word of God” The “word” or “rhema” means utterance… so it is by the utterance of

Rhema is a very packed word… this verse must be understood that it is God who speaks salvation to us… He calls us… this calling is Rhema… the Calling and Speaking is Christ Himself… the Logos.

To get the real meaning …

Paul is not saying preaching saves in Romans 10, as he states later the Hebrews heard but were not saved… it is by God’s word… or God’s calling and drawing by Jesus Christ men are saved. Salvation is by God alone and man does not save anyone. We may preach, but it is God that saves… so to say we save anyone through our preaching is not the true Gospel but a gospel of human works.

Preaching is not useless… as long as God is calling and drawing… but it is just a noise without God… and I have heard much preaching that was sound but had no life in it because God was not speaking and calling… it was worthless though doctrinally sound.

iggy

82   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 9:47 am

Chris R: Sinners get saved by the preaching of the true Gospel. They do not get saved by false or non-existent gospels.

God can use any avenue he choses….

Rick F.It is absurd to suggest that certain terminology is the only way to salvation. It is a denominational construct and linguistic addiction that usually leads to gospel self righteousness.

Amen Rick, you always have the words I search for!

83   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 9th, 2009 at 10:14 am

Scotty,

God can use any avenue he choses….

I agree that God can and does save people through sloppy presentations of the true gospel.

But, Scripture clearly says that those who preach a false or non-existent Gospel are accursed.

For instance, a sloppy and poorly delivered message about man’s sin and rebellion against God and Christ’s death on the cross to redeem lost sinners is exactly the kind of message (the true gospel) that God uses to save people.

Rom. 10:17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.

However, preaching a false gospel lives sinners in their sin and puts both the preacher of the false gospel and his hearers in danger of hell.

Gal. 1:6   I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— 7 not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.

Gal 5:4 You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace.

Therefore, it is important to listen to the “gospel” than any self-professed Christian pastor is preaching and determine if he is preaching the TRUE Biblical Gospel or if he is preaching a false Gospel.

Jesus CLEARLY warns us that the devil’s agents masquerade as God’s sheep.

Matt. 7:15   “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.

I strongly believe that a pastor in ANY denomination including the LCMS that preaches a ‘gospel’ that doesn’t discuss man’s sin and rebellion and call sinners to repentance and faith in Christ for the forgiveness of sins but is instead preaching “a gospel” that says that God is standing by waiting to help you experience a more satisfying and fulfilling life and that all you have to do is commit yourself to applying certain Biblical principles and doing it God’s way is not preaching the Biblical Gospel. Instead, they are preaching a false, law based gospel and that gospel does not save anyone because God doesn’t use false Gospels to save because His word says the exact opposite.

84   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 11:11 am

One of my best friends for 20 years is a faithful member of Grace Church in Brandon, Florida. It is a MacArthur satellite church and is decidedly reformed/Calvinistic. I have personally heard John MacArthur preach at that church a few years back.

My friend is mattied, they (white) have 4 adopted clack childre, all of whom come from distressed situations. My friend is one of the most expansive witnessers I have ever known, even though he is reformed. He learned Greek and Hebrew without going to school, and he is thoroughly involved with foreign missions.

He is one of the finest Christians I have ever known. He openly admits, he was saved at Carpenter’s Home Church in Lakeland Florida one night while Karl Strader, a decidedly health and wealth preacher who is personal friends with Oral Roberts, Kenneth Copeland, and all the rest, was preaching.

Chris, this man did not preach the type of gospel you seem to insist God would never use, and yet Dave was saved that night. His life of sin was changed and his family was astonsihed. Later he came into the reformed theology.

You are wrong, Chris. It is true that we should preach the gospel clearly and not promise earthly advantages, however God’s Spirit can and does reach out to lost sinners as long as the true Christ is preached.

Your compartmental theology breaks down at the point of a sinner’s conversion under an unapproved and even heretical presentation of the gospel. I have known personally sinners who were saved after watching Jesus Christ Superstar, and I’m sure that is not a divinely approved message.

85   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 11:22 am

Chris R., thanks much for you dialogue:

1. The contest at PCR is purposely designed to be a reductio ad absurdum. On its face it it is designed to clearly and simply highlight the doctrinal / methodological problems of the seeker-driven movement. – Chris R.

I agree that much of the seeker-driven movement was/is doctrinally weak. And I agree pointing out the errors and deficiencies are noteworthy.

Yet, what this contest does is assume that anyone who delivers a sermon based on the Star Trek is guilty a priori, without examining the content of the sermon.

Now, maybe you mean a sermon that basically exposits the movie and barely mentions the Bible. And since there probably will be those, giving them an “award” is fine. But the likes of the radical ADM’s will twist any reference to Star Trek as fulfilling your goat-herding expectation. And no “award” should be given until earned.

86   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 11:28 am

The pastor in an effort to be relevant to the unchurched actually preaches about the content of a movie and tries desperately to dig out the “biblical principles” found in the movie….The pastor does end up preaching about the Bible (usually with disconnected out of context verses from multiple paraphrases and translations) but the marketing piece that he sent out to the unchurched people in his community inviting them to church amounted to nothing more than a bait and switch…

I will listen to your review.

And assuming it is as you say, I agree.

I loathe a bait and switch.

Again I say, let the sermon be found guilty, THEN give the award.

Proclaiming biblical truth and being culturally relevant are not mutually exclusive – as many ADM’s appear to believe.

87   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 11:33 am

To me [use of popular culture] simply serves to highlight the silliness that has so deeply permeated the church.

It’s not like silliness is anything new in the church. It is just as silly to preach against going to movies as it is to preach about a movie.

Lambaste against sillies all you/er like… but let’s not act like it’s anything new… or all of a sudden the church is going to hell in a hand-basket.

88   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 11:35 am

The goat herding moniker is an unnecessary invective designed as an inside joke as well as a condescending way to elevate one’s own standing in GRACE. Stigmatizing people through the use of creative fulminations leaves the platform of honest confrontation and exposes a need to exercise a latent doctrinal self righteousness.

In short, you are willing to sacrifice a serious issue by using an inflammatory disparagement which both diverts attention to the issue and satisfies a need for self gratification.

89   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 11:41 am

OK, I downloaded my first Chris R. podcast… 1 hour and 49 minutes!!! YIKES! Whi has that kind of time.

Sorry Chris R., I’ll have to skip ahead a bit.

90   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 9th, 2009 at 11:59 am

Neil,

There are some churches that do a FANTASTIC job of using movie metaphors to help people understand the scriptures. Sadly, they seem to be the exception rather than the rule.

91   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 9th, 2009 at 12:02 pm

Rick,

I don’t think I am compartmentalizing.

Let’s see if we can find some common ground before we move forward.

I think we would both agree that the Mormonism is NOT Christianity.

But, do you think that God saves people through the Mormon Gospel? Why or why not?

92   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 9th, 2009 at 12:04 pm

Neil,

I agree that being culturally relevant and Biblically faithful are not NECESSARILY mutually exclusive categories.

93   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 9th, 2009 at 12:14 pm

Rick,

The Goat-Herder monicker is a perfectly apt description for those churches who, like Granger, have the majority of people in attendance not believing in Salvation by Grace through Faith Alone, Not believing that the Bible is inerrant and authoritative and not believing that Salvation is only in Jesus Christ.

The reason why the majority of people at these churches believe falsely is because these churches haven’t been preaching sound Biblical doctrine, they’ve been preaching to meet the felt-needs of unbelievers (goats). As a result the goats who’ve been showing have remained goats. Hence the term ‘goat herder’ applies.

Pastors are under shepherds of the good shepherd they have a Biblical mandate to feed and care for God’s sheep by preaching the word and sound doctrine. There is no Biblical loop hole in regards to this responsibility.

Preaching to meet the felt needs of goats is an abdication of a Pastor’s biblical duties to feed God’s sheep and is directly responsible for the poor out comes we’re seeing in these ‘churches’.

94   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 12:20 pm

Well then,

Apostles of Hate is an apt description of some of the ODMs whose entire blog is dedicated to uncovering and mocking people’s sins, including the sins of the lost.

Being an “apt description” does not innoculate a phrase from being purposely and creatively demeaning.

95   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 12:29 pm

Chris R.,

I listened to the first half of your critique of Tommy Sparger of North Point Church, from Easter Sunday… and it almost brought me to tears. I know this sounds silly, and I am shocked to say it… but it broke my heart… I had to stop.

To critique a sermon is one thing, to mock, to interject sarcastic put-downs, to ignore when he says something as a joke and you mock him as being serious… it hurt.

I hope you NEVER hear a sermon of mine… my ego is way to frail for this kind of treatment. You spent more time critiquing his delivery than you did the biblical nature of what he said. Your critique as far as I got was almost solely dedicated to mocking his style, his delivery, is methodology – not his theology

1) You mock his opening announcement saying he thinks the Joker is more importance than Jesus because he is mentioned first. It was an announcement about next week for crying out loud… he started with a preview.

2) At the first mention of Jesus you say – “Christ has made an appearance…”
The condescending tone aside, what difference does it make if he describes the plot of the movie, THEN parallels it to Jesus? You complain about the order? He was barely into his introduction and you are mocking him for not saying “Jesus” soon enough.

3) He intro’s the movie and goes on to another point… I assume he will pick up the movie and make the connection… yet you cannot wait – you think out loud – “What does this have to do with Slumdog…” Well, WAIT and see…

4) Your comment about don’t tell em what it means “to you” tell me what “it means.” I understand the danger of over personalizing something as if it can have multiple meanings – one for you another for me, etc… But any time anyone says “This is what the Bible means” they are mean in effect “to me” – because all interpretation are personal! I agree there is only one meaning, but all statements of fact are “as far as I understand it”

5) I agree the reference to the Energizer Bunny was lame.

I do not know this pastor. I have never heard a sermon by him. I did not liten to the end of this one to see how he tied in Slum Dog Millionare to see if I thought it was good or not.

I could not finish because I was too hurt by your condescending, mocking, voice over dialogue as you criticized a man delivering a sermon you happened to find (mostly very very very very petty) fault with.

It may have been the worst sermon every preached, you may have some very valid objections…but I will never know because I could not get past your attitude.

I was going to take up your challenge regarding the first Star Trek sermon you found – but I will have to wait until the pain subsides, and then decide if I think I should try bearing it again.

I know this sounds like I am mad… I am not.
As wimpy as it sound… I am deeply hurt.

96   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 12:38 pm

Yikes that was long… but I feel a little better… a little…

97   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 12:46 pm

I am organizing a round table critique panel where we sit in chairs with arms, read comments from Extreme Theology, and creatively pick them apart with some humorous hyperbole added for effect. I will provide a buffet for the afterglow when we eat together and laugh at all the Stupid Sheep Shepherds!

Donations accepted.

98   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 12:53 pm

As one who can be an accomplished mocker, I wonder this:

If you really believe the goat herder is lost and on his way to hell, and that same goat herder is actively leading others to the eternal lake of fire, where is the humorous mocking in that?

I would suggest the presence of tears before any laughter, but that’s just me.

99   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 1:15 pm

I am organizing a round table critique panel where we sit in chairs with arms, read comments from Extreme Theology, and creatively pick them apart with some humorous hyperbole added for effect.

If this were to have the same painful effect as the “sermon review” I listened to – any legitimate critiques of the blog would have to be over-shadowed by: extreme sarcasm; focusing mostly on grammar, fonts, point-size and not the actual message; interjecting thoughts as we had them and not wait to see how the whole paragraph play out.

And if Jesus was not mentioned in the opening sentence..

100   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 1:19 pm

Yes, Neil. Who would pay to listen to a measured, humble, and dispassionate assessment free from the inside joke humor and the mocking sarcasm that listeners enjoy? Without the WWE ambiance, it’s as bland as toast without butter.

101   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 9th, 2009 at 1:57 pm

Neil: Yet, what this contest does is assume that anyone who delivers a sermon based on the Star Trek is guilty a priori, without examining the content of the sermon.

RA: I think Chris knows exactly what his contest does and the message it sends. He’s way too sharp not realize the obvious.
__________
CR: I do not believe that God saves people through false religions. The omnipotent God revealed in the scriptures doesn’t save people in Islam through the message of Islam.

RA: And now he’s subtly equating the message of all these Christian “pastors” (the horrific Goat-Herders, whomever they might be, and despite any variance between them) with the message of a religion as far removed from Christianity as Islam. Incredible.

I would argue that we are not talking here about any kind of message that diverges as far from Christianity as the message of Islam. Another world religion message — I think all of us would agree — is not a Christian message and does not even have a remote similarity to, or grounding in, anything connected to Christ. Nevertheless, God can even use non-Christian messages to draw people to him. I’ve known many people who eventually came to Christ on a road that started in a world religion — or even a cult!

Now, to be more specific with regard to seeker churches (which can differ radically from each other), I am seeing that Chris and others are creating a wildly irresponsible false scenario — i.e., the message must be either:

a ) the true Gospel message as defined by you (despite your claims that it is defined by scripture); or

b ) an utterly false Gospel presentation that does not save, but merely serves to direct goats.

But the reality is that there is a wide scope of Gospel presentations that are completely acceptable, although each might emphasize some aspects of the Christian life more than other aspects of it.
____________
CR: However, I STRONGLY disagree with your your claim that’s all that matters.

RA: Here is where CR’s view of God and his sovereign power gets smaller, and smaller, and smaller, and…..
____________
CR: From my research, and I listen to thousands of seeker-driven sermons every year, Seeker-Driven sermons have much more in common with Mainline Liberal sermons than with orthodox Christian sermons

RA: At this point I must make an observation for all readers — not to be antagonistic, not to get personal, not to accuse. But I make this observation as an apologist for 15+ years.

With all the respect that Chris is due, I would be remiss to not point out that CR’s so-called “research” — in the opinion of THIS researcher and based on MY research — actually amounts to nothing more than sifting through hours of sermons in order to find snippets (words, phrases, analogies, illustrations) that can be:

1. lifted out of context;
2. perverted into something it isn’t;
3. refuted using a specific theological leaning in hopes of showing how wrong/heretical/apostate someone is.

CR’s tendency is to either completely divorce a person’s words from their full theological paradigm, or dismiss/ignore additional teachings the person has presented on the issue, which puts the quoted text in an altogether different light. CR also habitually demands a kind of theological/doctrinal specificity that one would find more appropriate in a seminary class or thesis.

CR does not use as his backdrop what a given person believes in toto, but rather, he uses his own doctrinal prejudices and favored brand of preaching.

Consequently, CR hunts/digs for anything that can be reshaped to form some corrupt dogma. The subsequent remarks fall in line with comments such as: “Here’s why he’s wrong.” “Isn’t this a foolish thing to say.” “Look how unbiblical!”

This kind of myopic and biased analysis is what so confused Mark Waltz at Granger Community Church (for those interested see CONFUSED BY THE CRITICS).

[Note to Chris: In response to the above, I would ask that you please not accuse me of making this all about a person rather than ideas. You are the one who brought up YOUR research. And that is what I am addressing.]
_____________
CR: Sinners get saved by the preaching of the true Gospel. They do not get saved by false or non-existent gospels.

RA: Here is one of CR’s fundamental errors — based on a fundamental truth that he is missing: i.e., Sinners “get” saved by God (not a message). And God will use anything and anyone to accomplish is desires (maybe that’s my Calvinism coming through).

CR’s second error is in his relentlessly rigid, Lutheranized, narrow-minded, and stunted understanding of the multi-colored and multi-faceted ways and varying depths that the Gospel can be presented and still be the Gospel. Essentially, if a Gospel presentation (or call to Christ) is not presented PRECISELY how CR would do it, then according to CR it’s not really the Gospel (not really a call to Christ) and no one can be saved through it.

One word: tragic.
_______________
CR: Scripture clearly says that those who preach a false or non-existent Gospel are accursed.

RA: The problem here is that CR and other ODMS keep going around saying certain people aren’t preaching the Gospel and are accursed when in reality they are preaching the Gospel just fine. But because it does not sound the way they subjectively like to hear it, does not go as deep as they think it should go, and does not emphasize particular points they subjectively feel must be emphasized — that to them equals a false Gospel.
______________
CR: ….. they are preaching a false, law based gospel and that gospel does not save anyone because God doesn’t use false Gospels to save because His word says the exact opposite.

RA: This is CR’s play/loop button being pushed. Hence, my previous posts on any further dialog being a waste of time. This reply by me is for the benefit of other readers who might stop by the blog.

RAbanes

102   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 9th, 2009 at 2:20 pm

CR: These are large ‘churches’ which have 53% of their members not believing in Salvation by Grace alone. (aka goats)…….The Goat-Herder monicker is a perfectly apt description for those churches who, like Granger, have the majority of people in attendance not believing in Salvation by Grace through Faith Alone, Not believing that the Bible is inerrant and authoritative and not believing that Salvation is only in Jesus Christ.

RA: Here we have an interesting comment by CR, which shows yet another tactic of ODMS — i.e., the misapplication of information.

CR has a survey about one single church, but then applies that to a host of other churches without grounds for doing so (and without additional surveys or studies of each church).

Suddenly, you have percentages from one survey being used to tar and feather a plethora of churches in different locations, with different pastors, having different congregations, using different programs, and including different……well, just about everything.

But that doesn’t matter. All of them “have the majority of people in attendance not believing in Salvation by Grace through Faith Alone, Not believing that the Bible is inerrant and authoritative and not believing that Salvation is only in Jesus Christ.”
____________________
NEIL: To critique a sermon is one thing, to mock, to interject sarcastic put-downs, to ignore when he says something as a joke and you mock him as being serious… it hurt.

RA: And here is another issue — the senseless, juvenile, high-school-ish, giggling, joking, ha-ha-ha approach that must make Walter Martin roll over in his grave. It helps no one and smacks of childhood playground bully tactics.

Walter Martin, the acknowledged founder of the apologetic movement, was always honorable, serious-minded, thoughtful, and sober in all of his critiques — which ALWAYS focused on the essentials of the faith and never crossed into subjective areas.

Martin endlessly leaned toward grace and gave the benefit of the doubt to EVERYONE, until clear/irrefutable evidence showed that someone had crossed the line into from orthodoxy to heretic/apostate.

In the days of Martin there was none of this widespread nit-picking, heresy-hunting, legalistic, judgmental, subjective-oriented crusades to find the heretic and burn him alive using whatever means are necessary.

What we have today is a perversion of the noble movement/ministry started by Martin that was to defend the faith, not find the heretic/apostate.

RA

103   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 3:50 pm

#83 If that’s all you can see Chris, all I can do is sigh……and truly grieve for you and the people you attempt to rob of their Joy. Burdening people with your legalism when Christ came to set us free!
Take of the blinders, Brother….

I just don’t have the energy to argue with such bullheadedness..

104   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 3:53 pm

PLUS, my attention span is only good to about 113 or so comments…. ;)

105   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 4:58 pm

I realize several hours later how utterly melodramatic comment 95 sounds. Yet, that is how I was struck listening to Chris R.’s so-called review of a sermon.

If he had critiqued the content of the sermon that would have been fine. But all I heard (with a couple of exceptions) was a running dialogue mocking the delivery. That is not fighting for the faith… and I guess it pains me because it’s a side of Chris R., I had never seen.

106   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 5:21 pm

“But all I heard (with a couple of exceptions) was a running dialogue mocking the delivery.”

Welcome to the format.

107   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 9th, 2009 at 5:56 pm

I’m sorry to say this, but I think we have a deep-seated pathology going on in some of these watch-bloggers….given what seems to be an incessant (dare I say, obsessive) referencing in their posts to sex, sexuality, nudity, lust, homosexuality, effeminate behavior, charges of being sissies, homo-phobic-like rhetoric, etc.

“Methinks thou dost protest too much.”

RAbanes
P.S. Johnson’s article, predictably, is now being referenced by Sam Guzman over at SOL.

108   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 9th, 2009 at 6:33 pm

Ohio Christian school tells student to skip prom

A student at a fundamentalist Baptist school that forbids dancing, rock music, hand-holding and kissing will be suspended if he takes his girlfriend to her public high school prom, his principal said. . . . Frost, a senior at Heritage Christian School in northwest Ohio, agreed to the school’s rules when he signed a statement of cooperation at the beginning of the year, principal Tim England said. . . . Frost’s stepfather Stephan Johnson said the school’s rules should not apply outside the classroom. . . . (The Principle) warned Frost there would be consequences if he attended the dance. England then took the issue to a school committee made up of church members, who decided to threaten Frost with suspension. “In life, we constantly make decisions whether we are going to please self or please God. (Frost) chose one path, and the school committee chose the other,” England said.

I’m sure they probably preach the good old Gospel in the good old right way at that school. Whew. And they sure aren’t being effeminate about standing for biblical truth and fighting against the God-condemned sins like “dancing, rock music, hand-holding and kissing.” I can sleep easy tonight.

109   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 9th, 2009 at 6:59 pm

#108 Why don’t you join in the lawsuit thats sure to follow, Richard?

They have the right to do what they wish. It is their rules, he agreed to them, as did his parents. If you do not want to obey the rules, don’t go to the school.

110   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 7:04 pm

I agree with Pastorboy. They made their fundamentalist bed – now they gotta lie in it.

This line pretty much says it all –

If Frost is involved with alcohol or sex at the prom, he will be expelled, England said.

Sounds like this principal just assumes it’s gonna be one big drunken orgy… two immediate questions came to my mind 1) Why would you say such a thing? and 2) Just how would they know?

111   Joe    http://joemartino.name
May 9th, 2009 at 7:09 pm

#109
I actually agree with you. The parents and the kids signed their name. Of course, it also proves that most christian schools are breeding ground for Pharisees and Spiritually abused Christians…

112   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 9th, 2009 at 7:11 pm

PB: It is their rules, he agreed to them, as did his parents.

RA: From my understanding of the article, these “rules” (for a moment let’s set aside the fact they they’re legalistic, non-biblical rules that are being pushed as God’s tenets for right Christian living) applied to his in-school behavior — i.e., where the boy goes to school.

But it seems the principle is extending these “rules” to his conduct OUTSIDE of school. I’m not sure exactly how this works (but that’s the difficulty when you start getting into legalism). Hence, the father’s comment: “Frost’s stepfather Stephan Johnson said the school’s rules should not apply outside the classroom.”

So there seems to be some possible mis-communication going on.

RA

113   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 7:14 pm

As long as the dancing at the prom is Jewish praise dancing I’m all for it!

114   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 7:20 pm

The bit about the rules and their application outside the school would be a possible exception to my comments in 110.

That said, if you gonna push such externals it only makes sense you would think you should extend them across the board.

That said, I don’t have enough data for me to call it legalism.

115   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 9th, 2009 at 7:50 pm

Richard,

Thanks for participating in the discussion. It wouldn’t be the same without you. ( I mean that sincerely, not as a snide comment )

Since it is the weekend and my wife would kill me if I spent the after noon countering every single point brought up in this discussion I am limited to responding to the issue that I believe is the crux of the matter and the big difference between us.

Here is what I consider to be ground zero in this discussion.

CR: Sinners get saved by the preaching of the true Gospel. They do not get saved by false or non-existent gospels.

RA: Here is one of CR’s fundamental errors — based on a fundamental truth that he is missing: i.e., Sinners “get” saved by God (not a message). And God will use anything and anyone to accomplish is desires (maybe that’s my Calvinism coming through).

CR’s second error is in his relentlessly rigid, Lutheranized, narrow-minded, and stunted understanding of the multi-colored and multi-faceted ways and varying depths that the Gospel can be presented and still be the Gospel. Essentially, if a Gospel presentation (or call to Christ) is not presented PRECISELY how CR would do it, then according to CR it’s not really the Gospel (not really a call to Christ) and no one can be saved through it.
One word: tragic.

When I have a bit more free time this weekend, I’ll respond. Stay tuned.

116   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 7:53 pm

I pretty much just skimmed that discussion… but I suspect Chris R., would agree that God saves. That sounds like semantics to me.

117   Chris Rosebrough    http://www.extremetheology.com
May 9th, 2009 at 8:00 pm

Richard,

Just one point in passing.

Do you think that this was an ad hominem / mocking comment on your part?

I’m sorry to say this, but I think we have a deep-seated pathology going on in some of these watch-bloggers….given what seems to be an incessant (dare I say, obsessive) referencing in their posts to sex, sexuality, nudity, lust, homosexuality, effeminate behavior, charges of being sissies, homo-phobic-like rhetoric, etc.

“Methinks thou dost protest too much.”

Rather than attacking Phil Johnson why don’t you interact with the substance of his article?

I think he makes some valid points and the article that you linked to isn’t about sex or nudity. Its about the feminization / castration of the church. Which is a hot topic today. Here’s an article from a NON ODM source on the topic.

http://www.christianpost.com/Intl/General/2009/05/men-want-more-anthems-less-hugging-in-church-07/index.html

118   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 9th, 2009 at 8:06 pm

Here’s some more info:

“Heritage Christian is an 84-student Baptist school that forbids dancing, rock music, and hand-holding. Tyler signed a statement agreeing to the school’s rules at the beginning of the school year.”

It seems that the church/school actually intends to govern these aspects of the students’ lives while they are not only IN the classroom, but while living their own private lives outside of school hours:

“Tyler’s stepfather, Stephan Johnson, said the school’s rules should not apply outside the classroom.”

The school says otherwise:

“It is our hope that the student and his parents will abide by the policies they have already agreed to.”

So there seems to very different understanding between the school/church & the student/family regarding the agreement.

- The church thinks it applies to the boy’s private life (absurd, IMHO, not to mention unbiblical because they are attributing these ruls to God).

- The student/family apparently thought the rules applied to in-school behavior.

Here’s more material from the school/church that justifies their stand:

Proverbs 4:23 says, “Keep your heart with all diligence for out of it are the issues of life.” II Timothy 2:22 says, “Flee also youthful lusts but follow after righteousness faith charity and peace with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.” When the school committee, many years before I became the principal, set up the policy regarding dancing, I am confident that they had the principle of fleeing lustful situations in mind. The question as I see it is, should a Christian place themselves at an event where young ladies will have low cut dresses and be dancing in them? Isn’t it contrary to the example of Joseph and the verses that I stated?

Goodness gracious. I guess that cuts out the Ballet.

But now here’s an interesting comment from the church/school with regard to girls sports: “…high school volleyball teams, and a high school basketball team.”

Wait a minute — what about all those young high school girls jumping up and down, and up and down, and up and down….at the net & under the basket. Surely that will inflame someone in the audience given the fact they are only wearing T-shirts and shorts.

Perhaps its the additional element of music at a dance that causes dancing to be so sinfully tempting. The obvious question: Can they dance if there is no music?

RA

NOTE: More things that various Christian sects/denominations teach should be avoided by believers because they are carnal, worldly, enticing, sensual, tempting, and sinful (currently forbidden by various ):

- buttons
- bright clothes
- mustaches
- cars
- radios/TVs
- guns
- chocolate
- meat
- alcohol (so much for a nice Chianti with spaghetti)
- coffee/tea
- R-rated movies
- Jewelry
- clams/pork
etc. etc. etc. etc.

“‘Let no one judge you’ (2:16-17) This warning exposes the dangers of legalism of the gnostic teachers of Colosse. . . . Somehow, adhering to the religious routine inflates the ego and makes a person content in his self-righteousness….Let no onetell you otherwise: legalism is bondage. Peter called it a ‘yoke upon the neck’ (Acts 15;10). — Warren Wiersbe

119   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 9th, 2009 at 8:22 pm

CR: Do you think that this was an ad hominem / mocking comment on your part?

RA: NO.

I was serious. I was making a serious observation and musing about what might be going on.

Are you telling me that you have not noticed a fixation of sorts among certain bloggers/watchers in their repeated referencing to sex, sexuality, nudity, lust, homosexuality, sissies, and others being effeminate? How could you miss it?

It seems to indicate to me a kind of unhealthy obsession, if you will, that is rather odd. It was my personal observation.

It’s Johnson whose framing his criticisms of others in a way that accuses them of being effeminate and less than manly.

My remark “Methinks thou dost protest too much” expresses my concern that there is far more going on here than simply criticisms being leveled at others. So that is not an ad hominum attack. An ad hominum is being made by Johnson, IMHO, who is raising the hated spectres of sissies, gays, fags, and effeminate abominations.

C’mon, Chris, calling other men of God EFFEMINATE? Please. I am simply saying — something is wrong here. Very, very wrong.
___________
CR: Rather than attacking Phil Johnson why don’t you interact with the substance of his article?

RA: That’s an attack? To point out that Johnson and others, IMHO, are showing an unhealthy preoccupation with certain issues? I wouldn’t really call that an attack.

Now, if I were to accuse Johnson of being kind of “gay” in his approach to issue A-B-C, well that would be an attack. Oh, wait, that’s what Johnson sort of did.
___________
CR: Its about the feminization / castration of the church. Which is a hot topic today.

RA: My point exactly.

Feminization? Castration? I’m troubled by this kind of relentless imagery and I think its indicative of some underlying problems.

Personal opinion. Two cents. For what it’s worth. You don’t agree? Fine. Don’t agree. That’s cool by me.

RA

120   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 8:27 pm

” Its about the feminization / castration of the church.”

You can see it when men’s wives are allowed and encouraged to scold and rebuke ordained pastors. I just don’t see Phil Johnson’s wife castigating ordained elders from around the world.

Is that the feminization of which you refer?? :cool:

121   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 8:45 pm

So far that post has been talked about conceptually, as well as the mental state of the authors – any thoughts on the content?

122   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 9th, 2009 at 8:54 pm

RA (#118) :

(absurd, IMHO, not to mention unbiblical because they are attributing these rules to God).

Since when has applying one’s preference to God’s law been a hindrance for Christian schools? I thought that was the mission of Christian schools. At least it was in mine and every other one I’ve ever come into contact with.

123   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 8:58 pm

“any thoughts on the content?”

It’s subjective and it uses western definitions of masculinity. Oriental men kiss each other, cry, and generally behave differently that their western counter parts.

If culture is the standard – have at it!

124   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 9th, 2009 at 9:12 pm

Neil: So far that post has been talked about conceptually, as well as the mental state of the authors – any thoughts on the content?

RA: Hey Phil, I guess my issue at this point is simply….Why bother?

Far more simple issues/concepts have already been discussed with Johnson (and others) with no resolution, only more accusations…..so again, Why bother?

That’s becoming my attitude now after about 4-5 years of banging my head against hasty generalizations, inaccurate research, faulty logic, concealment of information, out of context quotes, misrepresentations, flat-out lies, hate rhetoric, fear-mongering, and deceptive/slanderous accusations.

For me this whole thing, truth be told, is winding down in a big way. I am currently pursuing a radically different course of ministry that I hope to enter in the near future — and when that time comes, I’ll not have anything to do with this kind of stuff anymore (not even casually).

With regard to this new piece by Johnson, if I had to just make a quick superficial observation, the one thing that immediately jumps out at me is the the disturbingly sexist language used as a means of mocking, degrading, and vilifying others and the concepts they espouse:

“admirable traits for mothers and wives are dishonorable mannerisms for men to exhibit (or hide behind) ”

“Today’s evangelicals seem committed to keeping the church a soft, delicate, sissified environment.”

“Even the tone of the preacher has to be suited to the sewing circle”

“Where does ’seeker-sensitivity’ fit into the biblical description of what the church should be? Answer: it doesn’t. It’s a typically effeminate trend.”

I kept thinking: “This guy can’t be serious.” Then I realized he was.

I suppose he wants all really MANLY preachers to scream, rant & rave, yell, and pound their fist like Paul Washer, who to be honest, sounds strikingly similar to one of those REAL MEN we see on today’s reality shows who is about to get into a smackdown — except Washer’s ranting and raving has something to do with “God” rather than some chick.

So that’s my one and only observation I have the time or concern to even mention — the sexist language is deplorable, insulting, degrading….and TBH, embarrassing.

RA

125   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 9th, 2009 at 9:14 pm

*** “Phil,” should be “Neil.”

126   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 9:18 pm

Funny to me is that the Church is the BRIDE OF C HRIST and everyone is worried about it being feminized! Ummm… Bride… get that?

I think we forget that in Christ there is NO MALE OR FEMALE…

So really the whole idea of the Church as being castrated or feminized is stupid and unbiblical..

Is Christ castrated? Is His Body feminine?

I rejoice that even though I am male I am considered to be a bride of Christ.

Rev 19: 7. Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. 8. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.” (Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of the saints.)

2 Corinthians 11: 1. I hope you will put up with a little of my foolishness; but you are already doing that. 2. I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him.

So tell me how dumb it is to argue over the feminizing of the Church when Paul and Jesus both call it a Bride…

iggy

127   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 9:28 pm

Many of these sekker types do motorcycle evangelism and they emphasize being men’s men. I do not know where he gets the kind of stereotype he suggests.

128   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 9th, 2009 at 9:28 pm

Rick,

You are absolutely killing me these days. Absolutely, positively killing me…… ROFL.

RA

129   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 9th, 2009 at 9:29 pm

BTW – I’ll punch anyone here directly in the face as a sign and a wonder of my absolute masculinity in ministry.

I’ll curse and relieve myself in the street if necessary.

Goofy.

130   Neil    
May 9th, 2009 at 10:15 pm

…any thoughts on the content?

There really isn’t any content – that I saw. Some observations that are vague generalities and cliche followed by the expected accusations which are void of any connection to the observations.

131   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 9th, 2009 at 11:11 pm

Rick (#126):

I do not know where he gets the kind of stereotype he suggests.

Rick, go in your bathroom. That porcelain thing over in the corner …

132   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 10th, 2009 at 8:14 am

It is curious that those who claim the utter necessity of exegetical teaching can wander off into subjective land when it scratches their particular itch. Additionally when you classify some as effeminate it is a clandestine way to pound your own masculine chest.

How effeminate is was to have the power to protect your family of twelve and yet You let the Romans scatter them and arrest You. How effeminate it was to remain silent and genteel before brutish men. How effeminate is was to acquiesce to the dictates of the government and not stand and fight.

How effeminate it was to allow men to rest upon your bosom. How effeminate it was to teach others to turn the other cheek instead of assuming the Fight Club stance. How effeminate it was to act like a limp dish rag and let mere mortals nail you to a cross and mock you.

I find the gender identification in the ambiance of ministry to be self serving and unbiblical and in the end it is a cultural contruct and counter productive to the gospel. Reading the life of our Example I often wonder where we get these gender projections that seem so muffled in Christ and why we are so blind to the glory of His weaknesses.

133   Chris P.    
May 10th, 2009 at 8:50 am

“and your point would be … ?”

Ah yes that is the question.

134   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 10th, 2009 at 11:07 am

Okay, here comes my Sunday morning rant regarding Johnson sexist hit piece. I read it again this morning, much to my regret….and I noticed a few more things.

First, if we are to listen to Johnson’s take on what a real manly man is like, then it seems a plethora of biblical figures are rather effeminate based on some descriptions we have:

GOD = EFFEMINATE: “… but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper” (1 Ki. 19:12).

WISE ONES = “A gentle answer turns away wrath” (Prov. 15:1 – “A soft answer,” KJV).

JEREMIAH = EFFEMINATE: “I had been like a gentle lamb led to the slaughter; I did not realize that they had plotted against me” (Jer. 11:19).

GOD’S PEOPLE = EFFEMINATE: “I will leave within you the meek and humble, who trust in the name of the LORD” (Zeph. 3:12).

JESUS = EFFEMINATE: “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth” (Matt. 5:5).

JESUS = EFFEMINATE: “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart” (Matt. 11:29).

JESUS = EFFEMINATE: “Jesus wept” (John 11:35).

PAUL = EFFEMINATE: “By the meekness and gentleness of Christ, I appeal to you”
(2 Cor. 10:1).

I read these passages this morning, then contrasted them to Johnson’s article, which in turn disquieting my soul even more — especially when I considered his article in light of the picture he provided of the frail-looking, skinny man attempting to shoot a basket underhand.

Isn’t it time that we, as REAL MEN, grow up and leave behind us that kind of high-school (or perhaps grade-school) mentality that seeks to show one’s GUY-HOOD via bullying, mockery, intimidation, shaming, name-calling, finger-pointing, and imagery like that? Does Johnson think that using such an image is funny? Manly? Biblical? I think it’s childish.

But the image fits with comments like: “… certain qualities which are admirable traits for mothers and wives are dishonorable mannerisms for men to exhibit.”

God forbid that we as men should exhibit “certain qualities” like love, tenderness, compassion, kindness, gentleness, empathy, sympathy, sensitivity, considerateness, and vulnerability (which seems to be a dirty word to Johnson).

Johnson’s whole article is thick with archaic, sexist, narrow-minded, Western-influenced, culturally-based, and decidedly unbiblical images/stereotypes of what is (and what is not) masculine — then he links that to subjective ideas about the proper and appropriate way to deliver the Gospel or a Bible-centered message from the pulpit.

It’s tragic and pathetic that his kind of thinking is still alive and well not just in America, but in the church. Why so tragic? Because Johnson’s whole concept of masculinity and strength are the very antithesis if what it means to be truly masculinity and strong in Christ.

It takes NOTHING for a man to be bold, hard-edged, direct, to-the-point, insensitive, thoughtless, harsh, sharp-tongued, callous, and unfeeling. All of that comes naturally to us GUYS.

But it is the supernatural work of God in a man that makes him better — i.e., kinder, gentler, more sensitive, filled with greater compassion & understanding, thoughtful beyond his nature, more loving. In other words, more like Christ.

Johnson diatribe, IMHO, is an embarrassment to true godliness and the kind of men that we are called to be in Christ. TBH, I was surprised that he didn’t add somewhere how men shouldn’t enjoy pretty flowers, shouldn’t ever wear pink, and shouldn’t EVER cry during a movie.

Here’s a fairly good article on godly masculinity that I think Johnson would do well to read.

Now, if Johnson wants to disagree with me, then I suppose he could just write a refutation. But to be honest, at this point I think my real manly side is coming out, and I’d be just as happy to go out back into an alley somewhere and settle it like REAL MEN. :-)

RA
P.S. I’m off now to go yell and scream the Gospel at someone like a real man (e.g., Paul Washer), making sure to tell them they’re a no good piece of junk and they’re gonna be torched for all eternity like some discarded chunk of worthless coal because they’re such a FILTHY, STINKING, LOUSY, DISGUSTING PILE OF DUNG! (Oh, that does feel good and masculine).

By the way, speaking of Paul Washer, to be honest, his tone and approach sounds a lot like David Koresh (I listened to many tapes by Koresh). And here’s an interesting article wherein Paul Washer is proven to be a heretic and preacher of a false Gospel (uh, oh).

135   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 10th, 2009 at 11:24 am

I have noticed Paul Washer’s inconsistencies months ago here. I find his messages to be perfectionist, paradoxical, duplicitous, and as far from reformed doctrine as one can imagine.

And his celebrity status in the Calvinist camp seems to project that which they have so often castigated. I do not discount his sincerity, but some of the statements he makes are careless, and some of his titles (The shocking sermon that no one will ask him back) are some of the same theatrical methods that seeker people use.

Paul Washer’s assertion that there is “no such thing as a carnal Christian” is so unbiblical that it is actually heretical.

136   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 10th, 2009 at 11:42 am

Rick,

What strikes me as odd is how people who are soooooooo utterly and adamantly against preaching the Law (e.g., Chris Rosebrough) and sooooooo Whoop-Whoop about grace would not go after Paul Washer with a vengeance.

Such folks, instead, will castigate preachers like Rick Warren, Kerry Shook, Erwin McManus and others — each of whom are big-time teachers of grace and advocate the idea that you can come to Christ just as you are. It is the Lord who will take you onward in holiness as you yield yourself to him and have your eyes opened to more truth while growing in the grace and knowledge of him. Salvation takes a miracle moment; sanctification a lifetime.

And talk about theatrics! Goodness, can he scream any louder? Bang his fist any harder? I agree that he is using “some of the same theatrical methods that seeker people use,” except its a different kind of show. Its sort of the difference between a chick-flick and horror movie. Emotions get going by both genres of film.

Odd. And I don’t get it.

RA

137   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 10th, 2009 at 11:51 am

Pauk Washer is the reincarnation of Charles Finney, with the ambiance of a Jack Chick tract, and all with a straight face touting a reformed theology.

Someone once said “You cannot make this stuff up!”

138   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 10th, 2009 at 12:28 pm

Rick,

Did you read some of the comments in Johnson’s thread? I like this one by “Blue Collar Todd” (clearly, a REAL MAN):

“It seems once Christians befriend gays, their view of homosexuality changes and their conviction of its sinfulness subsides.”

I would add that if you get too close their gayness will jump on you and seep through your skin, thus completing the conversion process to full blown effeminate. One’s voice will get higher instantly, and a love for cooking will be instantly felt.

Fortunately, I hear Johnson and the folks at MacArthur’s church are perfecting a “Gay-Away” aerosol spray (and splash on aftershave that stings really bad) which will protect true godly men from being effeminized and gayified.

RA

139   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 10th, 2009 at 12:42 pm

Here’s another gem from Mark B. Hanson in Johnson’s comments section:

“I read somewhere that the psychological profile of the average American pastor is virtually indistinguishable from that of a homosexual man.”

God help us.

RA

140   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 10th, 2009 at 3:12 pm

Well, Richard, if you desired a post of your own on CRN you can claim victory.

141   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 10th, 2009 at 3:27 pm

I have to giggle at this one (like a little girl, of course, not a real man):

“Apparently there’s a marked difference between the man-centered effete evangelicalism as represented by Richard Abanes and the Biblical preaching of men like Phil Johnson.”

effete: “Lacking strength or vitality; feeble, powerless, impotent; decadent, self-indulgent, effeminate.”

1. So I allegedly preach a man-centered gospel (lol, news to me, and I’d sure like to see documentation on that one). Rick, you’ll be getting my newest book — you tell me if I do that, won’t you?

2. And my brand of evangelicalism is allegedly “lacking strength or vitality; feeble, powerless, impotent; decadent, self-indulgent, effeminate.” (lol again, double-news to me, and once more, I’d sure like to see documentation on that one).

You gotta keep a sense of humor here in the face of delusions that are so sad. But I might as well also make some confessions to you, Rick:

- I used to be a ballet dancer years ago,
- I’ve had gay friends,
- I rarely, if ever raise my voice,
- my voice is rather high for a real man,
- I like flowers and take walks in gardens,
- I am a sucker for romantic ballads,
- I watch chick-flicks and get emotional,
- I cried when I saw “Brian’s Song,”
- I enjoy shopping,
- I really like the color pink

I’m sorry. I just thought I needed to get all that off my chest.

RA

142   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 10th, 2009 at 3:53 pm

If the issue is boldness and truth, I can understand. I just do not connect with the ‘effeminate” charge. In my previous independent Baptist circle it was decidely “man centered”, however those guys were real men. If that is what you’re looking for.

They were ex-marines, weight lifters, boxers, paratroopers, and they had their wives in absolute submission.

143   Chris    http://agendalesslove.wordpress.com
May 10th, 2009 at 4:13 pm

My confessions.

-I used to be a bouncer in a bar.
- I have gay friends
- I rarely, if ever raise my voice,
- my voice is deep for a real man,
- I like flowers and take walks in gardens,
- I am a sucker for romantic ballads,
- I watch chick-flicks and get emotional,
- I cried when I saw “Brian’s Song,”
- I enjoy shopping,
- I really like the color chartreuse

BTW if you don’t at least tear up at “Brians song” you are neither a real man or a real women. You are cold heartless shell of a human being. :)

144   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 10th, 2009 at 4:32 pm

MY confessions:
- I used to be a bar bouncer
- I used to ride a Harley
- I never watch chick flicks
- I have gay friends
- I raise my voice
- I hate flowers
- I have worn completely leather outfits
- I have a real problem with bossy women
- I tear up easily – Brian’s Song yes.
- I kiss my German Shepherd “Rudy” on the mouth
- I have several times wept profusely from the pulpit

I am 6′5″ 240lbs and I am a pcifist. My 290lb body builder son is not a pacifist. :cool:

145   Aaron    
May 10th, 2009 at 4:34 pm

Yeebus, Rick, you sound like a beefy monster! And you’re a pastor, that’s freaking awesome. :)

146   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 10th, 2009 at 4:36 pm

It’s confession time. Let us all confess how effeminate we are….. ROFL.

RA

147   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 10th, 2009 at 4:38 pm

I should mention that was the Brian Song staring James Caan and Billy Dee Williams — the REAL “Brian’s Song.”

RA

148   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 10th, 2009 at 4:45 pm

I hated the movie Fight Club (on TV) and loved the movie Rambo.

I have a deeply compassionate heart for the gay community. It is a gift from God since I never used to give it a thought. I think Ellen Degenerous is nice. I like Elton John’s music.

Oh no, I think I’m gay… :cool:

149   gordo    
May 10th, 2009 at 10:38 pm

As the only gay man here I would like to challenge the idea that you guys have “gay friends.” You may think that, but I doubt your “friends” feel the same way about you. Trust me on this one.

150   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 10th, 2009 at 10:54 pm

gordo,

Just so you know, I lived and breathed in the New York City world of dance — as a professional dancer on Broadway.

I studied at Alvin Ailey, American Ballet Theater, Luigi’s, American Dance Machine, and other schools. I also worked in both “A Chorus Line” and “Dreamgirls” – on Broadway & in the touring companies.

So, gordo, yes, I did have gay friends. I loved them like family, and they loved me. Many of them are dead now of AIDS. I do understand a lot, and have seen a lot. SO, at least I can say that i speak from experience. Christ is the answer.

peace,

RAbanes

151   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 10th, 2009 at 10:56 pm

P.S. to gordo……

…if you’re ever interested, you can stop by my blog and we can talk about the gay thing. Or, you can email me. Again, Christ is the answer.

peace in him,

RAbanes

152   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 10th, 2009 at 10:58 pm

I have gay friends… admitted I will not say they are close friends though during Jr high one was my best friend… until he moved away. I did not know he was “gay” until later. And really it does not matter to me. He would still be a friend today if I could find him.

153   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 10th, 2009 at 11:05 pm

Gay people cannot have straight friends? That is not accurate, even gays who know who you are.

154   Chris    http://agendalesslove.wordpress.com
May 11th, 2009 at 6:37 am

As the only gay man here I would like to challenge the idea that you guys have “gay friends.” You may think that, but I doubt your “friends” feel the same way about you. Trust me on this one.

Not sure that you can say that. I mean I’m pretty sure that the gay community isn’t a monolithic entity that all adheres by the same code of friendship.

155   gordo    
May 11th, 2009 at 6:41 am

Sarah Palin, Joe the Plummer, Carrie Prejean….. – I’ve never met a homophobe who doesn’t claim to have gay friends.

But I’ve never met a gay who claimed to have homophobe friends.

I have straight friends, but they are not people who equate effeminacy with being gay or who lobby and vote to make my life more difficult.

156   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 6:53 am

I do not lobby, I do not even vote, and I am against legislating morality. My weightlifting son knows gay men who lift weights and who show no outward signs (effeminate).

Be my friend? :)

157   Chris    http://agendalesslove.wordpress.com
May 11th, 2009 at 7:46 am

Like Rick I don’t lobby. I do vote but only in Presidential elections and local millage elections.

158   Chris    http://agendalesslove.wordpress.com
May 11th, 2009 at 7:47 am

Not that I’m currently lobbying to get you to be my friend by my last statement. :)

159   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 11th, 2009 at 9:20 am

There is no such thing as ‘homophobia’

It is a misnomer, unless. of course, it means ‘fear of homosexuality’

I don’t fear homosexuals. or homosexuality. I know that no homosexual will inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10) but neither will thieves, liars, adulterers, or fornicators. What I truly wonder is when the latter will become a ‘protected class’ that can call my preaching from Romans 1:18-32, 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 and Leviticus 18 ‘hate speech’.

I have gay friends, but they know where they stand as far as their relationship with God, because I have showed them in the scripture. Needless to say, they are no longer ‘close’ friends; really when people are in a lifestyle in opposition to what you believe in, can they be close?

My opinions really do mean nothing, it is what the Word of God says. And as far as the PYRO piece, they are right on. We are becoming, as a culture, sissified. Our boys are growing up to be emasculated by the teaching and psychiatry profession. It does not help that the media promotes effeminate metrosexuality in most modern day heros of the small screen. And believe me, in the preaching of the scripture, many in the ranks consider being more educational than confrontational is better. We need to feminize the Word of God, and be gentle, because it in itself is so offensive. Give me a break.

160   Brendt    http://csaproductions.com/blog/
May 11th, 2009 at 10:01 am

PB (#159):

There is no such thing as ‘homophobia’

It is a misnomer, unless. of course, it means ‘fear of homosexuality’

Granted “homophobia” is the 2nd-most overused word in the American vernacular (behind “racism”) and gets (ab)used much too often to mean “someone who thinks one negative thought about homosexuality ever”.

But homophobia does exist. I think that maybe your translation is maybe just a bit too literal. Nobody’s afraid that someone’s gonna sneak up on them and stick you-know-what you-know-where.

But a sad number of Christians, who ought to know better, are displaying actual fear. Nothing will get people “trusting in chariots” faster than how they feel they need to confront homosexuality.

161   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 10:22 am

Yeah, and it is all Paul’s fault for wanting us to be a pure and holy Bride for Chris.

And God sissified the Church for also calling it the Bride of Christ… unless one likes a really masculine “bride” I guess…

Whatever the whole argument is stupid to me.

Be it that Jesus was effeminate or very masculine… does not matter as there is not male of female in the Kingdom of God…

It is who we identify with as our own identity… I am a child of God…

Now in all this if a transgender person becomes a believer and is saved by faith… they are neither male of female.. God still loves them and saved them as he did me. Even the most effeminate homosexual who comes to faith is saved by Grace and not by his sexuality…

The Church is not sissified… it has people saved by Grace and loved by God…. as messed up as they are’…

For one thing I am glad of is slanderers, gossips and liars will not inherit the Kingdom…

162   gordo    
May 11th, 2009 at 10:26 am

At least PB has the honesty to admit that the gay friends aren’t close friends. When you honestly talk to your friends and explain to them that your heterosexuality entities you to preferential treatment and gives you the right to make determinations about their lives, rights, and freedoms because your God told you so….then we’ll see just how close of a friend they consider you to be.

Yeah – Rich – we could definitely hang out sometime – iggy and RB too.

163   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 10:40 am

Hey gordo,

You noted three individuals…..”Sarah Palin, Joe the Plummer, Carrie Prejean.” Then you stated: “I’ve never met a homophobe who doesn’t claim to have gay friends.”

First, I’m sure you realize that each person is an individual, so if you want to discuss those three people, make an observation about them, then discuss the merits of your views of THEM– that is one issue. But to link them to any one of us is an entirely different matter.

Second, make sure you don’t equate the term “homophobe” with simply an individual who feels homosexuality is a sin, which is what the Bible teaches.

Remember, the Bible also says fornication is a sin…..does that make us heterophobes? Adultery is a sin….Does that make us cheaterphobes? Lying is a sin….does that make us prevaricatorphobes?

I think you see my point.

Homo-phobia, Homo-paranoia, and Homo-hatred are very specific things that can exist to varying degrees in different. But you can’t attribute them to someone just because that someone happens to take a biblical view of things like sexuality, homosexuality, gay marriage, etc. etc. etc. To make such a broad and hasty generalization is a mistake gays make — and that doesn’t help anyone.

I can/do feel the way I do about homosexuality (i.e., I take the biblical position), but trust me, ROFL, I’m about as far from being homophobic as you can get. :-)
___________
gordo: I have straight friends, but they are not people who equate effeminacy with being gay….

RA: You’re right….being effeminate might be, or it might not be, an outward manifestation of being gay. But the two do NOT instantly go hand in hand (no pun intended). One does not necessarily follow the other.
___________
gordo: …..who lobby and vote to make my life more difficult.

RA: It’s a painful and complex issue…to complex to chat about, I think, in this kind of forum. I guess all I’d say is that we live in a free country, where laws and politics determine all kinds of things — from speed limits, to laws on drinking, to marriage, to abortion, to obscenity, civil rights…..etc.

And in the course of how such a country is run, sometimes we win; sometimes we lose. The gays have lost various battles in their political wars. The Christians have lost various battles in their political wars. I’m just grateful we live in a country where we can have those kinds of wars — i.e., at the ballot box.
__________
Pastorboy: There is no such thing as ‘homophobia’

RA: Actually, PB, yes, there is. I’ve seen it. I’ve experienced it. I’ve watched others suffer because of it.

Just because in your limited world perhaps you’ve never seen it or experienced it — that doesn’t mean it dosen’t exist. The world is a big place.
__________
pastorboy: I have gay friends

RA: I’ll have to go with gordo on this one when it comes to you, and say…..I doubt that…..
__________
pastorboy: And as far as the PYRO piece, they are right on. We are becoming, as a culture, sissified. Our boys are growing up to be emasculated by the teaching and psychiatry profession. It does not help that the media promotes effeminate metrosexuality in most modern day heros of the small screen.

RA: This is tragic. Please read my newest response – Homophobics, “Real Men,” and Effeminate Evangelicals?” — to Johnson’s sexist, narrow-minded, and unbiblical article (also available at Heresy-Hunters).

It doesn’t surprise me that you’re such a MANLY MAN pastorboy, and would so quickly let lose with words like sissified. But it does make me sad, very sad….and a little sick to my stomach, tbh.

I just can’t believe that we still have this kind of “REAL MAN” rhetoric going on in this day and age — and within Christianity, too. Ugghh.

This reminds me of talking to a racist who doesn’t understand why he shouldn’t use the word N***** and/or crack what he considers “jokes” about the physical features of Blacks and their supposed favorite foods. Sigh. :-(

RA
P.S. Time for my black MANLY coffee (with grounds floating in it), no girlie cream (or sissy sugar) — and the hardest/stale muffin I can find. And I’ll eat my breakfast while watching “Ultimate Fight Challenge” I recorded from SPIKE (the GUYS CHANNEL) last night. After that, I’ll go out to the garage and build something with my table saw.

164   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 10:48 am

“We are becoming, as a culture, sissified. Our boys are growing up to be emasculated by the teaching and psychiatry profession. It does not help that the media promotes effeminate metrosexuality in most modern day heros of the small screen. And believe me, in the preaching of the scripture, many in the ranks consider being more educational than confrontational is better. We need to feminize the Word of God, and be gentle, because it in itself is so offensive.”

You have bought into a self indulging cultural construct of Christianity that somehow considers the western projections of masculinity as Christian. Perhaps this has influenced your style of evangelism and your theology.

I know personally men of God who are gentle and kind and whose physical appearance is frail, and yet these men minister in Africa to AIDs sufferers. They wipe up the vomit, they clean the excrement, they hand feed dying mothers and children, and their appearance and speech would not be considered overtly masculine by western standards, however they are robust in the kingdom of God.

The term sissified is offensive and self righteous and is much more representative of a silver back gorilla pounding his chest than it does a bold and yet caring servant of the greatest Servant who ever lived. And for the record I am a decided complementarian.

When some on the liberal side try to make gender an issue, some on the other side become reacionary and start to masculinize everything with the western model as their template. It is misguided and counter productive to the power of the gospel which should not be dissected by gender.

Only the offices of the church are gender specific, after that there is no male of female in Christ. The depth of a servant of Christ should not be measured by the volume of his voice, or the visciousness of his verbiage, or even how bluntly he informs sinners of their eternal plight.

The spiritual measurement of a servant of God can and must only be measured by how much does he give of himself to serve God and man. A computer can be programmed to quote Scripture with loudness and clarity, and so God requires more than just speaking truth. A parrot can speak truth.

How do we live truth? How do we die to our own ecclesiastical reputation? Do we eat with the most vile of sinners? How many tears are shed for lost sinners? How many hours do we spend in the prayer closet in excruciating intercession? And when we do reach out in some way, do we feel vindicated from any indictment or do wee feel convicted because we could do more?

In the end, are we consumed with redemption or morality? Salvation or judgment? Law or grace? Are we consumed with being real men or being gentle bloodied sacrifices that receive the jeering, the mocking, the attacks, and the stripes without returning evil for evil, and in fact, returning gracious forgiveness?

Over the years I have heard believers say, “We aren’t suppose to be doormats”.

Yes, we are.

165   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 10:51 am

“The greates act of sissification was when the All Powerful Creator of the universe became a sissy, just like us.”

Rick Frueh circa A.D. 2009

166   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 10:53 am

I am a manly man!

167   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 11:01 am

I told someone the other day, “The biggest error you can make is to take kindness for weakness.”

What I mean is that because you are giving a person a measure of grace, that person should not be foolhardy enough to believe they are pulling one over on you. Unfortunately, this is how kindness/meekness is often interpreted.

Rick, I appreciate those comments above (#163).

Where I do see a culture becoming more effeminate is the inordinate focus men are putting on fashion, now spending time at the salon (not barber), the spa, the types of clothes worn, etc… This filters into other aspects of life as well – most men in my age-bracket can’t use a hammer or screw-driver if their life depended on it, but rest assured, they can type 60 words a minute with carefully manicured, uncalloused hands.

168   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 11:07 am

Being a secretary was a man’s job well before it was a woman’s job… so typing or whatever is not a “sex” skill set…

What I see is the dropping of stupid sexual stereotypes. I had a very good female doctor for a while… shame she was soooo masculine!

Again… this is stupid… tell me when men wore wigs… like George Washington and such… were they sissies? I guess so… women wear wigs… so they must have all been effeminate….

Yep we were never a Christian nation… we were founded by a bunch of effeminate males who were too focused on fashion!

Again… this is such a stupid argument…

Jesus wore a dress! We just call it a “robe”…

169   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 11:21 am

Paul: Where I do see a culture becoming more effeminate is the inordinate focus men are putting on fashion, now spending time at the salon (not barber), the spa, the types of clothes worn, etc… This filters into other aspects of life as well – most men in my age-bracket can’t use a hammer or screw-driver if their life depended on it, but rest assured, they can type 60 words a minute with carefully manicured, uncalloused hands.

RA: PLEASE, I’m begging you, please tell me you’re actually joking here.

RA

170   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 11:28 am

Rich – It’s an observation, especially in the environment I work (high-end technology sales). But not sure what you find so incredulous – then again, if you’re in the habit of frolicking on stage in leotards, I can see how this might be overlooked. :)

I’m not saying the above is sin, but just an observation.

171   gordo    
May 11th, 2009 at 11:51 am

Thanks for your comments, RA. I used Palin, Projean,and that plumber idiot as examples of 3 recent high profile people who pulled the “some of my best friends are gay” routine. I don’t think all religious people who think that homosexuality is a sin are homophobes. However, I think many straight people have a blind spot for their heterosexual perogatives. The religious right has taken this one step further to the conclusion that if I don’t get my way based on my religious view, I’m being persecuted.

I think that the reason the religious right is fighting so hard now is because they know that if the average person accepts basic civil rights for gay people and sees acceptance as a baseline attitude for inclusion in civil society, then the religious right will be excluded. They are already seeing their young people turn away in large numbers and their future will be ever increasing marginalization.

172   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 11:59 am

gordo:

I think homosexuality is a sin.

I think hating homoesexuals is a sin.

I think feeling self righteous about our heterosexuality is sin.

I think singling out gays is sin.

I think adding sexuality to a presentation of the gospel is sin.

I believe supporting moral legislation either way is sin.

I believe how Ingrid demeans and labels gays is sin.

SCORE:

Gays – 1 sin

Straights – 6 sins

173   Joe    
May 11th, 2009 at 12:14 pm

at the salon (not barber)

I’ve cut my own hair and now I go to a place called “Super Cuts” I’ll have to see if it’s a salon or not. Who knew they could be so insidious? It does have ESPN on all the T.V.’s, does that work for or against the barber/salon scorecard?

Wow

174   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 12:15 pm

Paul,

Just curious. Why is it effeminate to enjoy, be fascinated by, have an interest in, feel a deep appreciation for, or to use your words, have an “inordinate focus” on “fashion”? And who is defining “inordinate”? You? God? Your great-great-grand-pappy?

Forgive me, but I think that’s exactly the kind of thinking that has caused no end of psychological/emotional damage to both men AND women (not to mention a significant degree of conflict between men/women and men/men).

Where is your delineation between what is (and what is not) masculine in the area of ‘fashion” in the Bible? Did you get this from some codified book on MANHOOD or in a male-sanctioned book on MASCULINITY?

Seriously, where do we find ANY objective standard for saying it is effeminate to have an “inordinate focus” on fashion.

The same goes for your remarks about spas, barber shops, and how to appropriately use a hammer or screw-driver. What in the name of all that is holy does ANY of that have to do with actually being a man or being masculine? Such criteria certainly aren’t found in the Bible.

As Rick noted, all of this nonsense about spas and tools just archaic, westernized, old-school, anglo-saxon, non-Bible-based notions of what it really means to be a man. And they’re hurtful, oppressive, and damaging.

RAbanes

175   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 12:21 pm

RA,

I agree with Paul, and I don’t think you get his point.
I have 3 young boys that a I’m trying to parent in this crazy world of ours; and speaking from practical experience, boots on the ground (to use the manly military lingo) he’s right. As a matter of theory, teaching boys about masculinity is a GOOD thing, and an important job best done by fathers. I sometimes don’t know whether to laugh or cry when I’m out in public watching mothers tell their sons (over and over again) to stop running around in the dirt because they might get their nice Gap outfits dirty. Not to mention picking up any “parenting” magazine and seeing all the glossy ads for mini-vans, bikini wax, and tampons. When did fathers stop being included as parents??

The thing about the tools, also true! I’m starting to lose track of how many women around the neighborhood have asked me to fix something; and I type on a keyboard for a living. I do of course, let my boys run around the backyard with screwdrivers and hammers. Sure there’s a small chance they may put an eye out, but they may actually learn how to use them.

I do of course like planting pretty flowers in my spare time. And I am secure enough in my manhood that I would enjoy a stroll through the garden with Chris L.
I only watch those girly movies with my wife, though :)

176   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 12:22 pm

P.S. One of the greatest areas of common ground my wife and I enjoy is our shared “inordinate focus” on fashion. It has been for us an ongoing reservoir of fascinating conversation, artistic/creative interaction, enjoyable days spent shopping, and interesting times cuddled up together watching TV shows and appreciating them as a couple. But I guess that just means I’m effeminate (LoL, that’d be news to my wife of nearly 25 years).

177   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 12:28 pm

B.,

What if your boy, rather than wanting to be marine (HooWaa) or a construction worker, wanted to be a fashion designer and showed an inordinate focus on fashion. It happens. Prepare yourself.

What if he wanted to be a dancer? That happens, too. And a ballet dancer at that?! (Contrary to popular belief, there are indeed straight male dancers.)

Would you think he was somehow “effeminate” just because he was more interested in ballet than in building; more concerned with fashion than fighting? Still proud of him? Would you encourage him?

Who is defining manhood, masculinity, and male things at this point? It’s certainly not God. And it’s not the Bible. What you are doing is presenting cultural constructs based on notions rooted in male-dominated societies of the old world that confine men (and women) to certain roles.

We must pursue biblical truth on manhood/masculinity, not fall victim to what the WORLD says is manhood/masculinity.

RA

178   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 12:41 pm

Richard,

I will always love and be proud of my sons, whatever they do. I have nothing at all against fashion designers or ballet dancers.
Though (if you knew my boyz) the thought of them being fashion designers gives me a good chuckle. Dancers I could see it.

God is the author of masculinity & femininity and he designed them both perfectly; it’s all of us that screw things up.

I try to pick up the cross (including all things hurtful, oppressive, and damaging) and follow Jesus Christ as the perfect model of masculinity.

179   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 12:50 pm

Richard,

I would definitely rather my boys have a passion for fashion or ballet, than sitting around on their mothers sofa making fart jokes and playing video games when they are 30 years old, because nobody encouraged them to make good choices, take risks, and go out and create something beautiful in this world.

180   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 12:54 pm

hey B.,

I agree with you so completely: “God is the author of masculinity & femininity and he designed them both perfectly; it’s all of us that screw things up.”

And I also agree with: “I try to pick up the cross (including all things hurtful, oppressive, and damaging) and follow Jesus Christ as the perfect model of masculinity.”

That was my entire point.

A person’s interest in fashion, someone knowing how to change a car’s oil, a guy understanding the proper use of tools, a man wanting to go to a salon (as opposed to the good old corner barber, that TBH, my Dad took me to as a kind) — all of these things have nothing to do with Christ, his example of masculinity, what it means to be a real man, or God’s standards for being male.

When we add our own social/cultural/subjective roles on others, it can put some of them in bondage. As you said so well, “all of us that screw things up.” And when we screw things up, it can hurt people deeply. That’s all I’m saying. :-)

RA

181   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 1:08 pm

I enjoy preaching as Ziggy Stardust in costume, what does that make me?

182   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 1:17 pm

RF: …what does that make me?

RA: An alien….

183   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 1:41 pm

RA – because you’re a ‘fashionista’ – I think that’s the term – you might be taking things a little personal here…

You’re entitled to your opinions, and I want to reiterate that I do not see these things as sin (you need to read more carefully), just an observation.

Personally, to see a man leaping around in a leotard is disgraceful – not a sin – but repulsive to me. It is equally embarassing when a man doesn’t know which end of the hammer is responsible for what. Like Brett, I work at a computer all day, but I would be embarassed if, at home, I had call in help if I needed to change a light bulb.

184   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 1:46 pm

And in thousands of thousands of homes, even evangelical homes, teenagers struggle with attractions that they cannot understand but cannot deny. They have no one to talk to and no one in whom to be vunerable.

They have heard terrible things said about people, thinks like “bath house deviants” and ” purple boa” storm troopers and they have been taught that those type of people are a judgmental delicacy in God’s coming wrath.

And so they stuggle on a myriad of levels, and most times they cannot even accept themselves much less ask their own family to accept them. They compartmentalize their depression, and the reservoir of pain and self loathing grows with each passing day.

And then one day the inward paradox becomes so unbearable that they escape through the only method they know…death. Do not feel bad for them, though, we maintained our Biblical stance. We did not compromise with these queers, and we rained down righteous verbal judgment on these teenage faggots, these moral miscreants that were sent to undermine the very fabric of American culture.

They got what they deserve, and they would not listen to us when we told them to “Stop it!”. Whether they took pills, or hung themselves, or shot their brains out it does not matter, their death was God’s judgment. And all those that died of AIDs are a glorious revelation of our righteous God who had just had enough of these perverted rebels. Good riddens to them all!!

This Sunday I will preaching on the cross.

(Not God’s cross…our cross)

185   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 1:46 pm

I go to a place called “Super Cuts”

Joe, I think you missed my point (probably my fault). When you’re walking down the street and have trouble identifying a man from a woman, that’s ridiculous. But that could be explained by the fact I live in Toronto.

When I think of the salon, I am thinking of ‘metrosexuals’ getting highlights and detailed haircuts. To me it’s just silly and out of place for men to be more preoccupied than women with their looks. When men are plucking eyebrows and buying special face creams – I think we have a problem. Again – just me.

186   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 1:48 pm

Rick, is there someone decrying or picking up homosexuality as the only sin (or the worst sin) on this thread (maybe I’ve missed it)?

187   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 1:57 pm

Paul – My comment was in line with our exchanges with gordo. I also find that sometimes the “I am über-masculine” to be a latent homophobia.

The teaching that Jesus was a real man and exhibited strong and burly characteristics is both irrelevant and defensive. (as well as goofy)

188   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 2:03 pm

The teaching that Jesus was a real man and exhibited strong and burly characteristics is both irrelevant and defensive.

True enough and I agree 100%.

Is anyone here advocating this ‘manly man’ as a depiction of representing Christ?

189   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 2:23 pm

#188 – Not here, but men like Driscoll rant about it chronically.

190   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 2:31 pm

Rick,

There’s no doubt that churches do a bad job of loving and ministering to people with homosexual tendencies, and that is something we are all accountable to Christ for.

But using phrases like “latent homophobia” is more goofy that the situation you describe. The fact that modern culture wants to label anyone a homophobe that realizes (not believes) but realizes the fact that men and women are different is goofy. I don’t want my kids to think it is good that every other show on HGTV these days shows Harry and Larry fixing up their new home together; because they are a “family” just like mom and dad. You can say that trangendered/transsexual or whatever they are calling it these days is just another expression of masculinity like getting your oil changed and going to the barber shop, but it’s not true.

And before you label me as a “latent homophobe”, I have been spiritually enriched by the writings of Henri Nouwan and others who have truly struggled with these problems.

191   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 2:40 pm

I believe my statement included the word “sometimes” and was absent your name, Brett. From your comment your experience and perspective is different than is mine.

192   gordo    
May 11th, 2009 at 2:44 pm

“And in thousands of thousands of homes, even evangelical homes, teenagers struggle with attractions that they cannot understand but cannot deny. They have no one to talk to and no one in whom to be vunerable.”

Well put, Rick. Of those thousands and thousands few think about suicide and even fewer actually kill themselves, although it happens. (My best friend from bible college has tried several times now – he may some day succeed.)

What you are writing about is the failure of the evangelical church to find any place at all for GLBTQ youth. I concur. I grew up in a funamentalist parsonage and have a degree from Bob Jones University. I survived by completely sublimating my sexuality until my 20’s. But I was one of the lucky ones – I doubt in today’s environment I could hide – we didn’t talk about these things back then.

If you are interested there are some great blogs which won’t offend your eyes and ears and are very respectful of people of faith:

http://www.exgaywatch.com
http://www.boxturtlebulletin.com
http://www.gaychristian.net

If you truly have a heart for gays, as you’ve said, you will do some serious reading on the other side of the issue.

193   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 2:48 pm

Rick,

I saw the word “sometimes”. My experience is that sometime people throw around the word homophobe, just as easily as they throw around the words queer and faggot.

Brett. From your comment your experience and perspective is different than is mine.

I’m curious about that Rick.
You think it’s good and hip and cool that I can’t watch a home fixup show with my boys any longer without being indoctrinated by the shiny happy gay couple?

194   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 2:48 pm

PAUL: …..to see a man leaping around in a leotard is disgraceful – not a sin – but repulsive to me. It is equally embarrassing when a man doesn’t know which end of the hammer is responsible for what. Like Brett, I work at a computer all day, but I would be embarrassed if, at home, I had call in help if I needed to change a light bulb.

RA: LoL. Wow……that’s all I can say. Wow.

Lemme go pop a bud light, change into me overhauls, and stick sum chewin’ teebaccee in ma mouth. (spits). An’ just fer yer info, i can’t stan’ that hi-falootin’ fancy opree singin’ neither (spits).

RA

195   Joe    http://joemartino.name
May 11th, 2009 at 2:53 pm

I can’t watch a home fixup show with my boys any longer without being indoctrinated by the shiny happy gay couple?

You could always get rid of your T.V. I’ve never understood why people get upset when other people that don’t hold their religious values do things that are against those values. It doesn’t make sense to me.

196   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 3:04 pm

Lemme go pop a bud light, change into me overhauls, and stick sum chewin’ teebaccee in ma mouth. (spits). An’ just fer yer info, i can’t stan’ that hi-falootin’ fancy opree singin’ neither (spits).

RA, didn’t you use this line on this same thread already? Going to extremes, though, is a tired attempt to paint someone into a corner. Sorry, not going there.

Brett, I completely agree with your observations (television, your sons, basic life, etc). There are some here that will attempt to make you a homophobe simply because you disagree – biblically – that this lifestyle is in any way acceptable. Because of this, they take the leap that you are ready to send all homosexuals to hell. It’s a common trick used by the gay agenda… demonize and put your opponent on the defensive.

All that being said, I hope your initials (BS) don’t represent a metaphor of some sort. :)

197   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 3:10 pm

Joe, I think what Brett is emphasizing is that there is a clear agenda to normalize a lifestyle that is immoral. What was once rejected becomes acceptable, and what is now acceptable will be embraced.

Now, to to take a stand on the issue, you find yourself marginalized in society at large, and even in Christian forums like this you become an antagonist.

Considering television has the greatest impact on socialization, it is important to consider the impact it has, even if you don’t watch the shows.

198   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 3:15 pm

Joe,

I don’t watch much TV, and don’t encourage my kids to watch all that much either.
I think you’re missing my point.

There is a middle ground somewhere between Bob Jones preaching that homos are Satan’s mighty warriors of hell; and the emerging evangelical-relativists who seem to honor Gays as just another oppressed minority that needs to claim their rights because every problem they face is caused by other people. Trying to equate homosexuality with the brutal injustice that blacks faced in this country is ridiculous.

I’m curious Joe, do you have a son? How do you explain to him why the two guys in pink shirts are grabbing each other’s ass and kissing? They have a really nice house, so they must be a “family” just like mom and dad, right?

I don’t want my kids to believe things just because of daddies “religious values”, I want them to know what is true and good.

199   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 3:22 pm

All that being said, I hope your initials (BS) don’t represent a metaphor of some sort.

Paul C,

Not the first time I’ve been accused of being full of it :)

200   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 3:28 pm

“I’m curious Joe, do you have a son? How do you explain to him why the two guys in pink shirts are grabbing each other’s ass and kissing? They have a really nice house, so they must be a “family” just like mom and dad, right?”

I have two sons and I told them that God wants men with women but that these two men need Jesus, so pray for them. Seems pretty simple. What I do not tell them is that they are bath house deviants and should burn in hell. If we desire to be free from cultural behaviors that are at odds with our convictions I suggest the unibomber’s former cabin is for sale.

201   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 3:33 pm

But Rick, you are pulling your argument from somewhere that doesn’t exist in this thread. No one is calling anyone names or demonizing people that are caught with these impulses/feelings.

Trying to equate homosexuality with the brutal injustice that blacks faced in this country is ridiculous.

Yes indeed, but this has been the most effective strategy (deception) to date. Nothing has propelled the gay rights movement further along than the civil rights movement of the ’60s. The biggest false parallel that’s ever existed possibly.

202   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 3:34 pm

Joe, I think what Brett is emphasizing is that there is a clear agenda to normalize a lifestyle that is immoral. What was once rejected becomes acceptable, and what is now acceptable will be embraced.

This may be true… yet to “fight” this normalizing with unhealthy stereotypes is wrong also.

Real men can dance, sing, (I was in choir and mocked, yet funny how many men like to listen to their favorite rock bands) I had long hair (now I am bald, self afflicted)
Jobs once held by men became women’s jobs after WWI then suddenly we have a false stereotype of men’s/women’s jobs…

If a man can be a “stewardess” (which is no longer the term) so be it… if a man can be a nurse, so be it… if a woman does construction so be it.

If a man does fashion design it does not mean they are gay… I believe there is in fact a couple of hetero fashion designers out there… just because a boy wants to figure skate does not mean his he gay…

Come on… to promote lies is to be part of the problem even if it is on the other side of the spectrum… it promotes…. lies… not truth.

iggy

203   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 3:35 pm

Many see this culture as a hinderance to their parenting instead of a God given mission field. Salt and light, remember? This tortured view is primarily due to morality Christianty and democracy mixed with Christianity with redemtion on the back burner.

Sinners = sinful behavior.

204   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 3:39 pm

Rick,

I have two sons and I told them that God wants men with women but that these two men need Jesus, so pray for them. Seems pretty simple. – Rick

I agree with you Rick, but the man and woman need Jesus just as much so pray for them while you’re at it.
I sincerely hope that answer works for you guys, but my inquisitive little tikes always want to know more. But why daddy, why daddy, why daddy ? If I had a quarter for every time I’ve heard that one!

I’m nowhere near the unibombers cabin and all of my kids are, or will be in public schools. We are not separatists; I’m willing to put out in the deep and see what life has in store.

205   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 3:39 pm

The black/gay parallel is incongruous. But the Christ/love breach is representative of the issue.

The most expansive sin in the American church is greed and hedonism, but I see little protests about that. What does it say when believers who live beyond their means, pile up money against the teachings of Christ, and spend more money on dogs than on the poor, “stand firm” against homosexuality?

206   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 3:44 pm

I’m nowhere near the unibombers cabin

I am less than 300 miles from where the cabin was. LOL!

207   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 3:46 pm

The most expansive sin in the American church is greed and hedonism, but I see little protests about that. – Rick

Yeah, but those have been on TV much longer so they’re OK.

208   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 3:51 pm

The most expansive sin in the American church is greed and hedonism

Amen – I spoke about that the Sunday before last. We can cherry pick the sins we dislike and the ones that we hate and that is not of God.

Again – a false dichotomy in dealing with this particular conversation (among those right now). Chances are that Brett is like me to some extent – though I’m a father of 4 girls (hence the premature balding) – and am not just rolling around in $20 bills on my bed. I am thankful for what I have – more than I deserve or need to survive no doubt, and do find myself guilty of many sins like the rest of us (overt and of the heart and motives).

Rick, I think these ‘typical’ arguments are better reserved for another conversation/post where there are actually people trying to demonize a sin above all others.

Many see this culture as a hinderance to their parenting instead of a God given mission field.

That might be true, but whereas in the past the family was the primary socializing factor in a child’s life, this is no longer the case.

209   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 3:51 pm

And here is another example of Christian hand wringing about court decisions and makeup. Who cares who is on the court and what the court decides? It’s like being a Jew in Babylon and convulsing over what morality the government espouses.

Are people fallen or not? The outside of the cup, people, remember that. The church is busy whitewashing seplchres.

210   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 3:54 pm

Our calling is the gospel, period. Everything we do must have a redemptive essence or it is just a moral venting or an attempt to make our earthly living more comfortable.

211   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 3:57 pm

PAUL: you might be taking things a little personal here…

RA: Actually, I’m not. Truly.

I am speaking, however, from a perspective formed after years of seeing a great deal of damage/destruction thanks to the kind of thinking/views on masculinity that I am seeing some people post.

Rigidly defining tools as masculine and leotards as feminine (and repulsive) help solidify damaging notions of maleness and femaleness. Why are tools more masculine than tights? Does this mean a girl shouldn’t be able to fix a car? Does that make her suddenly masculine?

Why can’t people just be who they are — i.e., they like this, they like that, they enjoy this, they enjoy that, they are interested in this, they are interested in that — regardless of whether or not they are a man or a woman. THINGS/INTERESTS are not intrinsically masculine or feminine.
_________
Paul: RA, didn’t you use this line on this same thread already?

RA: I did a word search. No. :-)
________
PAUL: Going to extremes, though, is a tired attempt to paint someone into a corner. Sorry, not going there.

RA: Actually, tbh, I’m not sure how far my imagery is from the truth when you can so easily cast aside with revulsion one of the most widely recognized forms of classical artistic expression that has not only been globally respected for centuries, but has served to broaden the cultural level of countless countries. (Oh, and BTW, just fyi, the moves in ballet that can be traced back to France and the schools of fencing, which as you know was/is a deadly art of combat and in the days of duels was an essential skill. Now THAT must count for something in the category of true manhood.)

RA :-)

212   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 3:59 pm

Chances are that Brett is like me to some extent

Have no fear, Paul. I think Rick is changing the subject so we can go back to disagreeing again soon.

213   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 4:01 pm

gordo interjected the subject. Changing the subject on a blog thread is a duty!

Paul – you are not a homophobe but you are a racist! :lol:

214   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 4:11 pm

RA: Lemme go pop a bud light, change into me overhauls, and stick sum chewin’ teebaccee in ma mouth. (spits). An’ just fer yer info, i can’t stan’ that hi-falootin’ fancy opree singin’ neither (spits).

Richard,
For the record this could have described my wife and I to a tee last Saturday evening (my wife minus the teebaccee spit of course). I will forgive your attempt at forcing your preconceived cultural baggage upon me :)
Objectively speaking, I don’t agree with Paul’s opinion of the leotards. But seeing me leaping around in tights after a couple of bud lites would be pretty disgraceful.

215   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 4:15 pm

Why are tools more masculine than tights?

I let someone more qualified answer that. BTW, are you actually reading your comment before submitting. Come on Richard – what a ridiculous statement.

Paul: RA, didn’t you use this line on this same thread already?

RA: I did a word search. No. :-)

LOOK AT COMMENT 163 – pretty much identical… “Time for my black MANLY coffee (with grounds floating in it), no girlie cream (or sissy sugar) — and the hardest/stale muffin I can find. And I’ll eat my breakfast while watching “Ultimate Fight Challenge” I recorded from SPIKE (the GUYS CHANNEL) last night. After that, I’ll go out to the garage and build something with my table saw.”

Paul – you are not a homophobe but you are a racist!

Rick, thanks for clearing that up. I am starting a group “Black People who Hate Black People”. Wanna join? Oh, wait a sec…

216   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 4:18 pm

But seeing me leaping around in tights after a couple of bud lites would be pretty disgraceful.

From Rick’s physical description above – my revulsion aside – I think that is something I might pay to see.

Oh wait, it’s already on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9RajNvJ3bCU

217   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 4:20 pm

Thank you, Paul, for continuing to have a refreshing sense of humor that still allow for serious discussions without being ugly. I appreciate you!

218   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 11th, 2009 at 4:24 pm

You as well Rick – as usual!

219   Brett S    
May 11th, 2009 at 4:31 pm

Is this the part where we all join hands for a stroll through the garden?
The gardenias really are lovely this time of year!

220   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 4:34 pm

#217 – I am a man, Brett, I don’t engage in such things. :cool:

Let’s go crawl under a car and inhale exhaust fumes!

221   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 4:35 pm

Paul,

Sorry, I read “this line” line and took that literally from you. I would have answered differently if you’d said, this concept. :-) I guess I’m a stickler for detail….

RA

222   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 4:36 pm

Brett: Is this the part where we all join hands for a stroll through the garden?

RA: I hear men hold hands in Italy. How sweet is that?

RA

223   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 5:07 pm

RA: I hear men hold hands in Italy. How sweet is that?

Also in Vietnam. It was an honor if a man in Vietnam held your hand when you were a yankee from the states.

I used get a laugh when a few of the more narrow views were very uneasy with it all.

Didn’t bother me, I grew up in a family that were huggers, the kind that doesn’t have to do the three pats on the back to verify your manliness….it’s a portagee thing.

224   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 5:20 pm

I think the stereotype of manliness is cultural and often just plain wrong.

I kiss, hug and love on my boy all the time. He wants to hold my hand and asks to be hugged. He loves to be tickled.

I am the same with my girl…

Now there are differences in how I talk and deal with their issues as they grow, but I am not willing to treat my boy in any less loving way. I never had a father… he died when I was little, so to me to be a father to my son and teach him how to be a loving gentle and yet strong man.

One example is that my son loved to dress up in his sisters “princess” outfit. My boy and girl would play “princesses” and dance.

I was not too amused over the “dress-up” and we did find some boy costumes for him to wear… I never made a fuss, yet I also never told him I liked it.

He sort of figured it out that he did not want people to come over and see him “dressed” up… so he stopped it on his own.

I think much of this sort of stuff works itself out…

Personally though I hope my son never grows out of kissing and hugging me…

I want him to know real men can show affection to other men… and it does not have to be sexualized.

iggy

225   Neil    
May 11th, 2009 at 5:33 pm

…any thoughts on the content?

There really isn’t any content – that I saw. Some observations that are vague generalities and cliche followed by the expected accusations which are void of any connection to the observations.

226   T.A.G?!    
May 11th, 2009 at 6:20 pm

Scotty Says:
May 11th, 2009 at 5:07 pm
RA: I hear men hold hands in Italy. How sweet is that?
Also in Vietnam. It was an honor if a man in Vietnam held your hand when you were a yankee from the states.
I used get a laugh when a few of the more narrow views were very uneasy with it all.
Didn’t bother me, I grew up in a family that were huggers, the kind that doesn’t have to do the three pats on the back to verify your manliness….it’s a portagee thing.
————————————————-

And Nepal.

But we know that some people feel Jesus is/was the most like them than anybody else.
Who would have thought that there is a world out there where people do things differently?

Wait till they find out that they are in the minority!

We in the Third World are elated that God used you to bring Him to us but even your forefathers didn’t tell us that Jesus was a union Carpenter from Minnesota.

227   Joe    http://joemartino.name
May 11th, 2009 at 7:02 pm

197 and 198.
You both are missing the point. Of course, there is a clear agenda to normalize a lifestyle that is sinsful. They’re not Christians!!! They don’t share your values. The Bible isn’t at the center of how they make their choices. They’re doing what non-christians do.

Now, Brett I especially like your comment that you don’t want your kids to have your values because their yours but because they are right and true. Here’s a clue buddy, they’ll only know what is right and true by how you live.

No, I don’t have boys. I have three girls, who still have the same sorts of questions. Of course, I took them fishing so maybe I should worry that they’ll be butch…

228   Joe    http://joemartino.name
May 11th, 2009 at 7:05 pm

Oh and the handholding thing also happens in the middle east. Maybe Jesus even held hands with some of his disciples…

The culture is not shaped by the Bible and it will not use it as it’s guide. If we expect our kids to learn from the culture around us we are living in the wrong century and maybe on the wrong planet.

229   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 7:08 pm

I like this comment posted in reply to my responses to Phil Johnson….

Sissyfication of Saddleback, Warren, And His Defenders. Rick Warren and Saddleback Community is very feministic and has employed women pastors and leaders. Saddleback IS a sissy “church” and is neither evangelical nor is it a true church. Homosexuality also is very feministic, and we all know Warren is pro-Sodomy as he has continually boasted about all his “gay friends”.

Uhm, yeah…not much to say to that, is there.

RA

230   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 7:10 pm

Content? Is there ever any real content on these sites? All I ever really see is complaining… I guess it is more easy to complain

ozone disappearing in the sky
bud man asking us why ask why
if I could find my magazine this bug would die
I complain
China boy standing up to a tank
southern boy living in the house of yanks
if I can’t seem to get my motorbike to crank
I complain

complain so much easier

small kid begging for a crumb of bread
next kid bloated lying nearly dead
I wonder what to take for my aching head
I complain
lots of people crying for a little rain
whole nation learning how to live with pain
I don’t know how I’m gonna clean this little stain
I complain.

complain so much easier

black man singing Mississippi blues
Africa starves a little baby drools
I’m trying to figure out all the basketball rules
I complain
Mr. Rush Limbaugh giving me the facts
treetops falling and the newsman yaks
I’m thinking about Carter and how I’m gonna be taxed
hey

complain so much easier

231   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 7:16 pm

“Of course, there is a clear agenda to normalize a lifestyle that is sinsful.”

Yes, there always has been. The obsession with effeminate/masculine expressions in the culture are diversions and only provide a platform for chest pumping. But while we were doing sentry duty about gender expressions, we have failed to see another deviant lifstyle that has now been normalized. As a part of the phylum chordata the lifestyle can be seen in:

The Western Christian

His lifestyle is many ways has been normalized, even though many aspects are at odds with the Scripture. And this species can be very masculine and aggressive, and he can be vocally at odds with other unbiblical lifestyles while remaining blind to his own.

The three most deviant traits are a love of money, a love of country, and a love of religion. He is decidedly ungay.

232   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 7:22 pm

Richard – where do you find these articles? Do you use google? I have always been amazed at the speed with which you guys find someone who has said something about you.

233   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 7:29 pm

RF: Richard – where do you find these articles?

RA: I have ONE OF THESE LITTLE GADGETS.

RA

234   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 7:40 pm

Somebody once said that Ingrid must have some sort of internet searcher that automatically sends her an e-mail based upon certain words (pastor, sex, gay, etc). I have often wondered if there is such a thing.

235   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 7:54 pm

I know of no such thing…..I just go through the Vatican’s wiretapping and cyberspace spy network, tbh. That goes 24/7.

RA

236   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 8:12 pm

When we we be known for more than what we are against – like here.

237   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 8:20 pm

T.A.G.?!:We in the Third World are elated that God used you to bring Him to us but even your forefathers didn’t tell us that .

So ya know T.A.G.?! I wasn’t there as a missionary or anything close to that. I was a soldier in the war that went on there…..

238   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 8:46 pm

I want to publicly commend gordo for his transparency here. I did not know his situation and it took courage to engage the thread with his revelation.

Thank you, gordo.

239   nc    
May 11th, 2009 at 9:25 pm

Oh, yes…those feminized men of…oh, I dunno, most of western civilization before they started wearing pants….

all those feminine men in the middle ages and the renaissance who wore hose of some kind…

gimme a break…

the clothing men wear in a dance performance is basically a “uniform” for the art form. It’s not about gender…it’s about a multi-century tradition and wisdom that understands what is optimal for extreme movement and to demonstrate the technique of dance.

Dance isn’t just throwing yourselves around or being athletic…there’s a whole world of muscle control, strength, and dance technique that goes into it.

These conversations are just silly…and reveal a lot more about people’s personal preferences masquerading as “biblical” insight.

240   gordo    
May 11th, 2009 at 9:43 pm

ah shucks – thanks Rick. Not courage – just tired of the whole lot of ugly coming from the neverending parade of stupid.

241   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 11th, 2009 at 10:03 pm

#165
Jesus Christ was no sissy. He was meek, and gentle. But meekness is a far cry from the feminization of men that the world, psychatry, and modern education promote.

I think we are speaking two different languages here. The Missionaries you describe are more manly than 2/3 of the metrosexual do wop seeker sensitive pastors out there. Anyone who would care for the least, the last, and the lost in a submissive servant Christ-like way is more of a man than those late-sipping mealy mouthed guys here. So you and I are in agreement.

Don’t mistake meek and lowly for sissified.

And RA, I do have homosexual friends. I do not judge those in the world for being homosexual, but I share the truth of God’s Word, and they do not stay close friends for long. But we still talk. Anyone in the church that has any degenerate sexual behavior, fornication, pedophilia, homosexual or otherwise should be treated worse than those who are in the world. We are commanded not even to eat with those who claim Christ and live in gross sin.

Thats what that ‘wicked’ guy Paul says. You gonna argue with him?

242   M.G.    
May 11th, 2009 at 10:09 pm

So lattes are effeminate too? Does that mean the entire nation of Italy is going to hell?

And what the hell is do-wop? What is this 1953?

243   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 10:21 pm

PB.

Yeah I agree, especially the parts where he exhorts Timothy to stay away from divisive people…

Yet I am not totally sure you are reading Paul completely correct… If so then no one should be eating with you ever!

iggy

244   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 11th, 2009 at 11:22 pm

John – the profound metaphor/simile of my sentence was flew completley over your defensive head. I don’t blame you, though, some of us are assigned different air space. :cool:

245   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 11th, 2009 at 11:39 pm

PB: 2/3 of the metrosexual do wop seeker sensitive pastors

RA: Please tell us where you’re getting all of these identifying markers you use to describe such pastors.

Metrosexual?

Do Wop?

Sissified?

Effeminate Metrosexuality?

Latte-sipping mealy mouthed guys?

Your comments reek of of homophobia, IMHO, as well as gay-paranoia, and a sexist mindset that is damaging/destructive not only to individuals you might encounter, but also to the very cause of Christ you claim to advance.
_________
PB: they do not stay close friends for long.

RA: Maybe its just the bullhorn you use that forces them away and they’re trying to preserve their hearing.
_________
PB: Anyone in the church that has any degenerate sexual behavior, fornication, pedophilia, homosexual or otherwise should be treated worse than those who are in the world.

RA: Oh, of that, I am sure.
_________
PB: We are commanded not even to eat with those who claim Christ and live in gross sin.

RA: Here’s a few more “gross” sins for you: lying, slander, gossip, unkindness, backbiting, deception. Do those count to?

RA

P.S. I love a nice latte in the morning.

246   Bill    
May 12th, 2009 at 12:39 am

PB – Keep witnessing and exalting Christ.

Richard get some balance man. The message of the cross is offensive and causes separation, no one is using a bullhorn to cause homosexuals to flee from friendship, why do you have to go there? It shows no grace and a serious problem with your heart as it is so hardened against those you profess to be brethren if you profess Christ as Lord of your life. But the way you are so fast and loose with the insulting remarks it leaves one scratching their head.

Think before you post.

247   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 12th, 2009 at 1:52 am

Bill: Richard get some balance man.

RA: :-) yeah, I’m such an extremist. I;d be very interested to hear where I am unbalanced. Please, feel free to share.
______
Bill: The message of the cross is offensive and causes separation,

RA: That doesn’t have anything to do with anything…
______
Bill: … no one is using a bullhorn to cause homosexuals to flee from friendship, why do you have to go there?

RA: That was a remark in connection to another thread here at .INFO that discussed the use of bullhorns. You wouldn’t know that if you didn’t read that other thread.
______
Bill: It shows no grace and a serious problem with your heart as it is so hardened against those you profess to be brethren if you profess Christ as Lord of your life.

RA: Again, you seem to have no idea what I’m even saying. :-( And as for a hardened heart, it’s pastorboy who alleges, contrary to the evidence, that I actually hate Christians — which is just bizarre.

“The hate that Richard Abanes has for Christians is despicible” – Pastorboy

I suppose that’s why I write Christian books, why just posted about “The Gift of Salvation: By Grace” at crosswalk.com, why I write inspirational Christian music, and why I help out at Greg Laurie’s Bible Study on Thursday nights in Orange County — all because I hate Christians.
_______
Bill: But the way you are so fast and loose with the insulting remarks it leaves one scratching their head. Think before you post.

RA: I don’t think I’ve insulted anyone, but I certainly have labeled various remarks for what they are. And as for thinking before one posts, well, my friend, uhm…….

RA

248   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 6:31 am

I only hate other believers when they deserve it. :cool:

249   Chris    http://agendalesslove.wordpress.com
May 12th, 2009 at 6:53 am

Anyone who would care for the least, the last, and the lost in a submissive servant Christ-like way is more of a man than those late-sipping mealy mouthed guys here. So you and I are in agreement.

Sounds kinda of emergent. Sounds like Shane Claiborne actually.

“late (sp) sipping” “mealy mouthed”.

At least you use language that engenders conversation. ?????????

250   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 8:11 am

OK – Everyone lean back, take a deep breath, and then prepare yourself for a post that as a history major I award with the “Salt Water Taffy Stretch Award”. The post is by Mike Ratliff and has been given the cryptic title “Homosexuality is a Sin”.

It seems Carrie Prejean is fading and the gays have top box office attractions this week. I might make mention that there are a myriad of sins that we commit that are post orphans, but at this point what is the point.

So I prepared for a redundant rehearsal of that which the Bible clearly teaches with an orthodox chest pounding, but lo and behold I came across something about which I was unprepared. Mike asserts that the higher ups in the gay community have a plan, an agenda, to make the gay lifestyle acceptable and protected by the government in the same way as it does heterosexuals.

OK, blah, blah, blah we’ve heard this story and of course that in a general sense is true, who cares? Wrong fight, wrong battle, wrong focus. But Mike then says that these gay subversives are structuring their strategy after the strategy employed by – are you ready – Leon Trotsky.

Ladies and gentlemen, we have a Leon Trotsky sighting!! And the article suggests that since Trotsky wrote articles undermining Stalin’s government the gays have now empoyed the Trotsky method to undermine the anti-gay laws. Writing things to convince people of your position is a Trotskyesque methodology? Coming from a BLOG does that seem somewhat – oh I don’t know – ironic???

And where oh where did Mike happen upon this thought? He was watching a PBS special about Churchill, FDR, and Stalin and of course anyone would immediately be reminded of the gay agenda and the parallel to Leon Trotsky. Can you imagine watching a special on that subject and seeing the gay issue intertwined in it? How do you spell “obsession”?

And so after watching that PBS special, and after doing some research on the communist party in the Soviet Union, a post entitled “Homosexuality is a Sin” is beautifully birthed. What does that tell you about the thought life of men and women who make it their life’s passion to address the errors and sins of others within and without the church?

Mike used to write thoughtful posts on redemption and the glories of Christ, but now it seems he is engrossed with the same “look what they are doing” subject matter. Where is the compassion, or the mercy, or even the offer of God’s grace to fallen sinners and deceived saints alike? The vacuos nature of so many of these ODMs stirs up the flesh but diverst the spirit from any kind of Christian empathy.

I would suggest that the some of the gays are not employing Trotsky at all, but it is much more akin to the beggar Lazarus hungry for spiritual food while the doctrinally rich man builds more and bigger libraries to contain all that he knows about God.

251   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 8:30 am

A positive about Mike. At least he has the……….nerve to attach his name to what he writes. There is something to be said about not hiding behind the “editor’ moniker.

252   M.G.    
May 12th, 2009 at 8:52 am

RE:251

That’s true Scotty. You must respect Mike on that basis.

Having said that, however, I must add something.

That post, and I say this with all due respect, has got to be the single dumbest thing I’ve ever read.

Wow. It defies credulity.

253   nc    
May 12th, 2009 at 8:53 am

The Missionaries you describe are more manly than 2/3 of the metrosexual do wop seeker sensitive pastors out there. Anyone who would care for the least, the last, and the lost in a submissive servant Christ-like way is more of a man than those late-sipping mealy mouthed guys here. So you and I are in agreement.

one’s personal hygiene habits or coffee preferences have nothing to do with one’s masculinity.

Sorry. just doesn’t.

Your comment also assumes that a “seeker-sensitive” pastor doesn’t care about the poor, etc. etc.

I just don’t see that as being true either.

All that being said, I take my coffee black. ;)

It’s just bizarre to me how anyone thinks a latte is an indicator of genuine gender identity…so strange.

Gender just doesn’t obtain in some of these discussions. It’s really weird to inject it there.

It’s just baffling…

254   Eugene Roberts    http://eugeneroberts.wordpress.com
May 12th, 2009 at 8:55 am

Communism… the gift that keeps on giving scaring

255   nc    
May 12th, 2009 at 9:08 am

More and more I’m just finding a new level of awe.

So weird…

256   T.A.G?!    
May 12th, 2009 at 9:22 am

Bill Says:
May 12th, 2009 at 12:39 am
PB – Keep witnessing and exalting Christ.
Richard get some balance man. The message of the cross is offensive and causes separation, no one is using a bullhorn to cause homosexuals to flee from friendship, why do you have to go there? It shows no grace and a serious problem with your heart as it is so hardened against those you profess to be brethren if you profess Christ as Lord of your life. But the way you are so fast and loose with the insulting remarks it leaves one scratching their head.
Think before you post.

——————————————–

You buy this?

Let em tell you something you’ve never thought about before.

The most likely reason his “gay friends” leave him is not because he “tells the truth” but likely because of the kind of behavior he shows here on this board.

“Sissy?”

“Do-wop?”

This man’s language and demeanor give him away long before he knows anything for sure about their sexuality.

You can smell aggression a mile away.

The sad thing is a crusading Christian never stops to look at the damage. At best they ignore their mistakes; and find something else to be “sure” about in a violent (not physical) manner.

(For example. Whatever happened to all those “Christians” who were absolutely militant about segregation? I’ll tell you one thing though–they’ll never be as vigilant about examining what damage they might have done as they were about keeping their churches “pure”. “Hey! Look a giraffe!”)

Jesus is an embarrassment to these types. (Remember when he got that pedicure from that woman? Remember when H e went talking to that other woman in public?)

257   M.G.    
May 12th, 2009 at 9:24 am

For the betterment of humanity, that article should be linked to a wikipedia page for “faulty comparison.”

Maybe some good could come of this, for the education of others.

258   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 9:43 am

I believe the category should be “Literary Entertainment” with the subtitle “If You Don’t Get it You Probably Never Will”.

By the way, the gays are not using Trotsky’s methods, they use Goebbel’s methods. I must admit the creativity in a post that almost makes Stalin the good guy.

Brilliant!

259   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 9:46 am

MG – “For the betterment of humanity…”

What in God’s dear Name does that have to do with anything attached to Christ!!??”

:cool:

260   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 9:52 am

The message of the cross is offensive and causes separation, no one is using a bullhorn to cause homosexuals to flee from friendship,

The message that is offensive is that God so loved the world he gave Jesus who died on a Cross and was raised to life and glorified… now we do not depend on our own works and need earn forgiveness and are reconciled (which PB teaches as conditional) to God through Christ. We are now saved by the Life of Christ imparted to those who believe. The division is that of whether one will believe in the finished works of Jesus or their own way.

We do not need to make it MORE offensive by our words and deeds. We do not need to offend the Gospel of Grace by demeaning others as PB does.

So get some balance yourself Bill…

iggy

261   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 9:55 am

Rick,

I don’t know about you, but I will still be human in my glorified state… I will just be fully human…

To that is what is meant by “for the betterment of humanity”…

Also we as Christians should show charity (love expressed in action) to all fellow humans… for the sake of Christ and the betterment of all humanity to come to Him.

iggy

262   Brett S    
May 12th, 2009 at 10:20 am

Joe,

#227
I’m trying, but I’m having a hard time understanding your thoughts on the topic.
I mentioned my 3 sons; but I also have a daughter that goes fishing and plays softball. I would never label her (or any other girl for that matter) as “butch”.

I seem to recall that you work with young people so I figured you understood where I was coming from. I have been teaching a CCD class (catholic Code deciphering) to 7th grade public school kids at my local church for the past 5 years. I’ve learned the hard way that kids are exposed to so much “diversity” that life is very confusing for them. They expect real answers to real questions (no offense), but sometimes they deserve more than “those 2 men need Jesus”. (My group of no-it-all 13 year olds would laugh me out of town in a heartbeat with that answer). If they are going to live as a new creation and “put on Christ” they need to be spoken the truth in love. They deserve to be taught the beauty of chastity, self-denial, and sacrifice. They can and deserve to be empowered with VIRTUES to bring out into the world. (Instead of being holed-up in bunkers with Christian music, Christian movies, Jesus bingo, and Christian pizza night)

In the same vein, if “gay” people feel oppressed because they have certain physical desires and sexual fantasies they need to get over themselves, join the human race, and stop blaming “homophobic” Christians for all of their problems.

They’re not Christians!!! … They’re doing what non-christians do. – Joe

It’s not my job to judge who is/or isn’t a Christian; my job is to tell the truth and let Grace and Mercy decide. I do think you’re fooling yourself if you think that Christians don’t commit sexual sins though, because it happens all the time.

263   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 12th, 2009 at 10:45 am

Brett – again, very sensible thoughts here.

The funny thing is this – on the prior post (or was it this one?) some were defending the folly of deriving sermons from Hollywood productions.

On this thread, we are now saying that the media they produce is unbiblical, so why should we expect anything good.

Do you see the confusion? On the one hand, people will try to get water from a stone (ie: preaching on Spiderman) and on the other hand we get Joe’s comments – “We shouldn’t have any expectations of Hollywood media because they’re not Christian.”

I find this astounding in its convenience.

In the REAL WORLD, kids will not be satisfied with lame-duck answers. They need to be taught the truth. In the OT & NT, homosexuality was referred to as an abomination. Now we water it down insomuch that some declare you can live a homosexual lifestyle while still serving God.

They’re not Christians!!! … They’re doing what non-christians do. – Joe

Yet Christians are more than happy to mimick and follow them if there’s a story to be told! Yay!

264   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 10:46 am

over at Surph’s website I received a really sad and silly comment back…

I left another comment so we will see if she will respond… but really she just cast quite a few false accusations at me…

iggy

265   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 10:48 am

I guess I am either being moderated or just caught in the spam filter.

266   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 11:02 am

Brett,
Your line

…if “gay” people feel oppressed because they have certain physical desires and sexual fantasies they need to get over themselves, join the human race…

is not even remotely Christian.
Sorry, it’s not.

267   Brett S    
May 12th, 2009 at 11:07 am

is not even remotely Christian.
Sorry, it’s not.

No need to apologize, Nathanael.

But do you care to elaborate on why I should disregard the parts of my Christian bible that tell me to deny myself, pick up my cross, and place my faith in Christ alone?

268   Joe    
May 12th, 2009 at 11:08 am

Paul C and Brett,
I’m sorry I haven’t clearly communicated what I think. I think the accusation that our society is more effeminate because of T.V. or culture is silly. I think that saying our culture is more effeminate because too many people don’t know how to handle a hammer is silly.
I think that fighting against things like two people living together is a waste of time. I think that blaming society or T.V. or music, or movies for how our kids “turn out” is passing the buck.
Probably in the broad strokes we 3 agree, but in the nuances of it we evidently do not.
I found the barber/salon/highlights to miss the point.
When I was a kid, I knew a guy that wouldn’t allow his daughter to go hunting because he didn’t want her to become “butch.” He used to lament the whole, “you can’t tell a man from a woman these days” so his kids had to wear Kool Lots (Sp-?), and his boys had the white wall hair cuts.
Again, I apologize for being unclear, maybe I’ve done a better job in this comment. I thought that my last few comments could be taken pretty harshly, which was not my intent. I was in a hurry as I was going somewhere and typing fast. Sorry about that.

269   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 11:10 am

The insinuation that they need to get over themselves is not the gospel of grace. We don’t change ourselves. Grace and mercy and forgiveness and love change us.

And the line about joining the human race reduced them to what?

270   Joe    
May 12th, 2009 at 11:12 am

In the REAL WORLD, kids will not be satisfied with lame-duck answers. They need to be taught the truth. In the OT & NT, homosexuality was referred to as an abomination. Now we water it down insomuch that some declare you can live a homosexual lifestyle while still serving God.

You got a mouse in your pocket, b/c I’ve never even come close to saying that..

Do you see the confusion? On the one hand, people will try to get water from a stone (ie: preaching on Spiderman) and on the other hand we get Joe’s comments – “We shouldn’t have any expectations of Hollywood media because they’re not Christian.”

I find this astounding in its convenience.

That’s OK, keep thinking about it and help me find ONE QUOTE where I said any such thing as we should be preaching about Spiderman or any other movie. I’ll wait.

271   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 11:13 am

But do you care to elaborate on why I should disregard the parts of my Christian bible that tell me to deny myself, pick up my cross, and place my faith in Christ alone?

You did not say that.
You told them to get over themselves and join the human race.

272   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 11:16 am

It amazes me that someone who is tempted to steal, but does not actually commit the act, is not told to repent.

But someone who has same-sex attractions is told to get over themselves.

Sorry to be redundant, everyone.

273   Brett S    
May 12th, 2009 at 11:19 am

We don’t change ourselves – Nathanael

Agreed, Nathanael. Sorry, this being a Christian blog I assumed everyone would be in agreement on the source from which Grace abounds. I am not a Calvinist though, I do believe Gods will us to cooperate with Grace.

And the line about joining the human race reduced them to what?

Sinners like the rest of us ???

Peace,

274   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 12th, 2009 at 11:28 am

Joe, regarding Spiderman, we (not you and I, but other commenters/contributors) got into a discussion around Chris R’s contest. Sorry to implicate you in this.

I actually agree with your point (ie: “They’re not Christian”). But others were defending the importance of being able to derive sermons from Hollywood movies, produced by people who are not Christians (hence my reference to getting water from a stone).

What I was trying to demonstrate is how convenient we can be when it suits us:

On the one hand… “Don’t expect anything from the ungodly media- they’re not saved”

On the other… “Let’s incorporate ungodly media and try to reflect the world in our sermons as much as possible so that people will think we’re relevant and hip.”

Again, this is not a slight at you specifically. Sorry about that.

275   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 11:28 am

Brett,
First of all, I’m not trying to be argumentative.
So I receive your extended olive branch and respond with “Shalom.”

To my inquiry, you replied

Sinners like the rest of us ???

I’m not seeing the connection.
Maybe I’m being obtuse (not intentionally).

When I tell someone to join the human race, it seems to me that I am saying that they are not currently part of it.

Perhaps I’m just being nit-picky.

276   Brett S    
May 12th, 2009 at 11:34 am

But someone who has same-sex attractions is told to get over themselves – Nathanael

I my younger days I had an attraction to just about every girl that walked through my college campus in a spandex mini-skirt. I do believe that God and my wife are pleased that I “got over myself” in that regard.

277   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 11:37 am

I guess it’s just verbiage then.

Coming out of a very legalistic background, the phrase “get over yourself” smacks of works, not grace.

But I will acknowledge that perhaps I’m reading too much into your remarks.

278   Brett S    
May 12th, 2009 at 11:41 am

When I tell someone to join the human race, it seems to me that I am saying that they are not currently part of it. – Nathanael

I don’t mean it in a derogatory manner. Just biblically speaking, we all have to fight against the root of all sin that goes back to the beginning. We all have the “pride” of Adam and Eve that wants to be God and decide for ourselves what is good and what is evil.

279   Brett S    
May 12th, 2009 at 11:46 am

Coming out of a very legalistic background, the phrase “get over yourself” smacks of works, not grace. – Nathanael

Thats OK, I come from a very selfish and individualistic background. It is amazing how Grace collides both ways.

Peace,

280   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 11:51 am

Shalom, Brett.

281   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 11:58 am

I believe that the Lord has always given me a sensitivity for those who are rejected.
And that has been increasing recently as I’m working toward being a full-time missionary with people with disabilities and mental illness and who are in prison and suffering through bereavement and other areas of society that many people do not know what to do with.

The ministry does not necessarily reach out to homosexuals. But I have a close friend, we used to be roommates, who has always been attracted to men. There’s a disturbing history that goes with that.
But it was only when he joined our group of Jesus-followers who did not define him by his sexuality, who loved him and accepted him, who clearly voiced the teachings of scripture regarding him acting out on his impulses, who prayed with him at 2:00 in the morning, and who extended grace to him that he began his accent out of the depths of self-hate and depression.

So I’m a little sensitive.

282   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 12:13 pm

I find the obsession with these things absurd:

* Homosexuality
* Beauty pageants
* Dancing
* Conservative vs. liberal
* And a laundry list of other fashionable blog targets

Question:

What gospel message do you share with any sinner that has sinful urges?

Answer:

The same message you share with everyone.

Rick’s grade: A+

283   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 12:30 pm

What intrigues me, is the thought that sanctification is immediate . I was taught and believe it to be true that it is an ongoing process. Which brings me to an “old’ saying.

You have to catch your fish before you can clean ‘em.

So many seem to expect immediate results at the time of Salvation, while in some cases that is indeed true but, in my observations that doesn’t seem to be the norm in majority of cases.

I would like to think that at my age I have gained maybe a wee bit of wisdom. And the same is true with my walk with the Lord. I see things now that I certainly didn’t see at the beginning of my walk. The things that convict now are not the same as they were in the beginning. So can I expect immediate results from a person from the start of their walk? No, someone prove me wrong.

Can a person be homosexual AND a Christian? Yes. Just as the things I see as sin now, I didn’t see at the beginning, did not exempt me from being a Christian then. It’s God’s job to change hearts, not mine……..And unfortunately I’m still a sinner now but I’m getting better.

284   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 12:35 pm

I’d like to add one more thing. It wasn’t the conviction of my sin that brought me to the Lord. It was the love I saw that the Lord had for me just as I was.

285   T.A.G?!    http://trinidadsdagay.blogspot.com
May 12th, 2009 at 12:40 pm

Nathanael Says:
May 12th, 2009 at 11:10 am
The insinuation that they need to get over themselves is not the gospel of grace. We don’t change ourselves. Grace and mercy and forgiveness and love change us.
And the line about joining the human race reduced them to what?

——————————-

To me it means they are sub-human.

This is why none of them buys the line that: “We love you. This is why we’re telling you this.”

It’s like those people who spread the gospel to the slaves to “civilize” them.
The truth always comes out I suppose.

I think this battle is lost. Some people are so normal that nothing–absolutely nothing will ever get them to examine themselves and their own prejudices and privileges.

In some people’s minds the perpetual questions is: “Why can’t everybody else be like me? I am–it’s not hard at all.”

But I think it’s in the interest of most people to see “evil” as unrelenting and stark (i.e. “These men intentionally do things with one another in order to mock God because they are evil.) To think of evil as something that comes from wholly and singularly evil characters is more comforting than to think of it a something that pervades everyone–including all the “nice people” that look like me and live around me.

The hardest people to have any sort of compassion are the people who see themselves in the movies. The people who are the definition of existence. Every thing that could possibly happen to them has been filmed and written about. Everywhere you go you see yourself staring back at you.
Of course you can’t conceive of another experience and another life with an intractable problem you have to manage every day–every moment.

When you live an unexamined life there are millions of things you take for granted. Millions of assumptions you make that other people (the abnormal–by “choice” of course) cannot make go unnoticed.

So when you hear “join the human race” who could be surprised? Everyone else could be just like me–if only they tried hard enough.

Dear Lord I wish I were heterosexual! I would be lying brothers and sisters if I didn’t wish for one day in my life to be able to look down on somebody else and still know that I was going to heaven.

(I just try to obey God the best I can by His daily grace and try to help other Christian people in my predicament. I don’t even try to reach same-sex attracted people who aren’t Christian because I’m not sure why they’d want to come to this. “Join the human race” indeed!)

286   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 12th, 2009 at 12:45 pm

Paul C.: In the OT & NT, homosexuality was referred to as an abomination.

RA: Cool. I have no problem with that. Let’s expand our study on what God’s views of what is an abomination in his sight.

WORSHIP OF IDOLS (i.e., anything we desire above God)
“The graven images of their gods shall ye burn with fire: thou shalt not desire the silver or gold that is on them, nor take it unto thee, lest thou be snared therin: for it is an abomination to the LORD thy God.” (Deut. 7:25).

SACRIFICING LESS THAN YOUR BEST TO GOD
“Thou shalt not sacrifice unto the LORD thy God any bullock, or sheep, wherein is blemish, or any evilfavouredness: for that is an abomination unto the LORD thy God.” (Deut. 17:1).

THE OCCULT
“There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch. Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee.” (Deut. 18:10-12)

PROSTITUTION
“There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel. Thou shalt not bring the hire of a whore, or the price of a dog, into the house of the LORD thy God for any vow: for even both these are abomination unto the LORD thy God.” (Deut. 23:17-18)

DIVORCE/REMARRIAGE COMPLEXITIES
“When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement . . . Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before the LORD.” (Deut. 24:1-5)

INEQUITY/UNFAIR BUSINESS
“Thou shalt not have in thy bag divers weights, a great and a small. Thou shalt not have in thine house divers measures, a great and a small. But thou shalt have a perfect and just weight, a perfect and just measure shalt thou have: that thy days may be lengthened in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee. For all that do such things, and all that do unrighteously, are an abomination unto the LORD thy God.” (Deut. 25:13-15, also see Prov. 11:1: “A false balance is abomination to the LORD: but a just weight is his delight”).

DISOBEDIENCE
“For the froward is abomination to the LORD: but his secret is with the righteous.” (Prov. 3:32, also see Prov. 11:20: :”They that are of a froward heart are abomination to the LORD: but such as are upright in their way are his delight”).

MULTIPLE SINS
These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren (Note to ODMs: Please read again – Prov. 6:16-19).

LYING
“Lying lips are abomination to the LORD: but they that deal truly are his delight.” (Note to ODMs, please read again, Prov. 12:20).

RELIGIOSITY OF THE UNREPENTANT
“The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but the prayer of the upright is his delight.” (Prov. 15:8)

PRIDE
“Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished.” (Prov. 16:5).

DECEITFUL SPEECH
“A malicious man disguises himself with his lips, but in his heart he harbors deceit. Though his speech is charming, do not believe him, for seven abominations fill his heart. (Prov. 26:24-25)

INSINCERITY BEFORE GOD
“He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.” (Prov. 28:9).

ABUSE OF GOD’S LAWS/MEANINGLESS RELIGION
When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts? Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting. Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them.” (Is. 1:12-14)

FALSE PIETY
“This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word. But whoever sacrifices a bull is like one who kills a man, and whoever offers a lamb, like one who breaks a dog’s neck; whoever makes a grain offering is like one who presents pig’s blood, and whoever burns memorial incense, like one who worships an idol. They have chosen their own ways, and their souls delight in their abominations” (Is. 66:2-3).

RELIGIOUS HYPOCRISY
“Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God.” (Note to ODMs: Please read again, Lk. 16:15)

I am struck by the fact that whenever I hear the word “abomonation,” I only hear it in connection to homosexuality. I wonder why. But it looks like there are a whole lot of other things we — i..e, us heterosexuals — are doing that are also abominations in the eyes of God.

So, let’s give all abominations equal time. It’s only fair, IMHO. (I wonder if we can also blame the Trotsky & Commies for our pride, lying, hypocrisy, injustice, and unfair business practices.)

RAbanes

287   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 12:46 pm

Good thoughts, Scotty.

288   T.A.G?!    http://trinidadsdagay.blogspot.com
May 12th, 2009 at 12:54 pm

Brett S Says:
May 12th, 2009 at 11:34 am
But someone who has same-sex attractions is told to get over themselves – Nathanael
I my younger days I had an attraction to just about every girl that walked through my college campus in a spandex mini-skirt. I do believe that God and my wife are pleased that I “got over myself” in that regard.

—————————————–

And just to be clear.

Does this mean that for as long as you have been married (or you can limit it to now), your wife is the only person you have found to be sexually attractive?

If so I suggest you have something you can bottle and sell for quite a lot of money.

289   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 1:01 pm

I gay person cannot righteously satisfy their unmistakeable urges. I cannot be have deep compassion for their situation.

290   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 12th, 2009 at 1:14 pm

RA – the problem you have is that the moment you hear the word ‘abomination’ sirens go off in your head. I never said – or insinuated – that the homosexual lifestyle is THE abomination in the Bible.

The distinction comes when people promote it as an ‘alternate’, fully acceptable lifestyle. A man/woman who is struggling with these urges, on the other hand, but endeavoring to live for God is no different than the heterosexual who struggles with lust.

We have gone over this numerous times on this site… no one is pigeon-holing homosexuality as the ultimate of sins…

291   John Hughes    
May 12th, 2009 at 1:20 pm

Rick: You want to try 288 again?

292   T.A.G?!    http://trinidadsdagay.blogspot.com
May 12th, 2009 at 1:25 pm

The distinction comes when people promote it as an ‘alternate’, fully acceptable lifestyle. A man/woman who is struggling with these urges, on the other hand, but endeavoring to live for God is no different than the heterosexual who struggles with lust.
—————————————–

While the “lifestyle” is not acceptable to God, same-sex attractions are not akin to struggling with “lust”–although people with same-sex attractions do struggle with lust like anyone else.

The issue is a lot more fundamental than that. sexual attractions are not “lusts”. Anyone who does not understand that must be in a marriage arranged by their parents.

293   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 2:00 pm

I cannot but have deep compassion for their situation.

294   Brett S    
May 12th, 2009 at 2:07 pm

Hello T.A.G.

Does this mean that for as long as you have been married (or you can limit it to now), your wife is the only person you have found to be sexually attractive?

No, not completely.

But I think God has gifted me with the grace and common sense to realize that there are much more important things in life than sexuality. And viewing myself or other people primarily as objects of sexual desire is dehumanizing.
That’s why I find it equally DISHEARTENING (disclaimer: I am not offended or picketing) that I can’t watch a football game with my young sons anymore without seeing a Viagra commercial every 15 minutes, as I do when somebody purposefully makes sure that at least half of the home improvement programs includes a gay couple.

I don’t make the distinctions that some Christians do of the spirit being “good” and the body being “evil’. I think Paul’s teachings about the desires of the “flesh” relate its opposition to temperance and self-control. I believe that like Christ we are called to be both fully spiritual and fully human. I believe that God desires both our spirit and our bodies to become holy.
That’s why the central tenant of the faith is the resurrection.
On the last day, those who are in Christ will be completely glorified body and soul.

Sorry for getting theological, I enjoy the conversation.

295   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 12th, 2009 at 3:22 pm

TAG
There is a huge difference with struggling with same sex attractions, lust, lying, unfair balances, disobedience, etc. etc. etc.

The difference is found in the struggle that you are in. If you are in Christ, it does not mean the struggle will not be there, for it will. But the difference is that we do not dive into sin, we do not drink it in like water, we do not function well in the darkness, for what does the bride of Christ have to do with Belial? We cannot live, walk about, function in darkness, for we are of the light. We cannot give an occasion for the flesh.

That being said,

9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

That is those whose nature is unregenerate, and who are walking in the darkness, dwelling in a land of deep darkness, that is their sin nature which leads to death and Hell…They will not inherit the kingdom of God. But there is hope for us if we allow the Light of Christ to change our very nature from darkness to light

11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

If we are in Christ we are new creatures, our natures have been changed, we have been washed clean, set apart, and completely declared not guilty by Christ and the power of the spirit of God.

So to all you

sexually immoral
idolaters,
adulterers,
men who practice homosexuality,
thieves,
greedy,
drunkards,
revilers,
swindlers

Should beg God for the grace of repentance and faith so that you can get a new nature and be defined as those in the light, in the Spirit rather than in the darkness and in the flesh of your former lives.

296   nc    
May 12th, 2009 at 3:27 pm

Chris P,

You should seriously listen to #5 here

It totally applies to you.

297   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 3:28 pm

“But the difference is that we do not dive into sin, we do not drink it in like water”

I would suggest that describes the American Christian very well, even the ones who are blind to their own participation.

298   Brett S    
May 12th, 2009 at 3:46 pm

But there is hope for us if we allow the Light – Pastorboy

If we ALLOW the Light??
So much for Sola Gratia, heh. Sounds like new age works rightousness to me!

Just giving you a hard time Pastorboy :)
For what its worth, I do admire your tenacity as a positive masculine trait.

299   T.A.G?!    http://trinidadsdagay.blogspot.com
May 12th, 2009 at 4:01 pm

So to all you
sexually immoral
idolaters,
adulterers,
men who practice homosexuality,
thieves,
greedy,
drunkards,
revilers,
swindlers
Should beg God for the grace of repentance and faith so that you can get a new nature and be defined as those in the light, in the Spirit rather than in the darkness and in the flesh of your former lives.

—————————————–

I mean this with all sincerity of heart and respect:

Why are you telling me/us this?

Who here does not know this?

What I have found throughout the years, see is that many people don’t want much to do with “those nasty people” so they throw a wall of texts at them.

If you want to understand someone’s needs you have to befriends them not talk at them (according to some narrative or formula in your head).

If straight people know they’re not supposed to have pre-marital sex and yet it is the norm (so much so that you almost certainly don’t start every sentence to your secular friends with “While I don’t condone your lifestyle…”) why do you expect gay people to do any better?

Yelling about adultery and fornication has don nothing to decrease it in society. Why do you think the same will work for homosexuality?

300   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 4:12 pm

Here is my public checklist:

sexually immoral (yes)
idolaters, (yes)
adulterers, (yes)
men who practice homosexuality, (no)
thieves, (yes)
greedy, (yes)
drunkards, (yes)
revilers, (yes)
swindlers (yes)

I am completely right with God because I have never had a gay thought. I feel so righteous!!

301   T.A.G?!    http://trinidadsdagay.blogspot.com
May 12th, 2009 at 4:13 pm

Brett S Says:
May 12th, 2009 at 2:07 pm
Hello T.A.G.
Does this mean that for as long as you have been married (or you can limit it to now), your wife is the only person you have found to be sexually attractive?
No, not completely.

———————–
This is exactly my point.
God originally designed men and women to be sexually attracted to each other so that it would make light work of “be fruitful and multiply…”.
These are not “lusts” to manage.

In some people this simple attraction is inverted for no known reason. (Ah well, we know things are no longer the way they were designed to be.)

That is a problem for them. That is the problem–not any “lifestyle”. (Ever since I was eleven I knew something was wrong. What would you have told me then? Would you have told me to ‘leave that lifestyle behind”? At age 11? 12? 13? What “lifestyle” does an eleven-year old have?)

Unlike you; they can’t just “grow up and marry”.

They have to deal with a host of issues which is not helped by the fact that most people eye them with suspicion (or would if they knew).

302   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 4:21 pm

So to all you

sexually immoral
idolaters,
adulterers,
men who practice homosexuality,
thieves,
greedy,
drunkards,
revilers,
swindlers

Should beg God for the grace of repentance and faith so that you can get a new nature and be defined as those in the light, in the Spirit rather than in the darkness and in the flesh of your former lives.

I think that should read “So to all you…come to Jesus Christ.”

303   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 4:25 pm

I’m just not remembering Jesus saying I should beg God for the grace of repentance and faith so that I can get a new nature and be defined as those in the light, in the Spirit rather than in the darkness and in the flesh of my former life.

I remember Him telling me to come to Him.

That process that you described, PB, is the lifelong, day-in, day-out reality of the Christian warfare against my flesh.

304   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 4:26 pm

Are teenagers who practice self gratification saved? Any believing men? How about those who drive over the speed limit? I have a long list.

305   Chris    http://agendalesslove.wordpress.com
May 12th, 2009 at 4:35 pm

PB,

Serious question. Do you sin? If so do want to share how?

306   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 12th, 2009 at 4:37 pm

TAG – thank you for your thoughtful comments and insight.

You are not justifying the ‘gay lifestyle’, yet you have given me some other things to consider.

Can I ask perhaps a silly question, but with all sensitivity and sincerity: does a person, like yourself, who claims Christ and understands the biblical stance on the issue, yet is homosexual, basically take a ‘vow of abstinence’ of some sort?

I know this reveals my ignorance on the matter, but any light you can shed would be appreciated.

307   Brett S    
May 12th, 2009 at 4:57 pm

Hey T.A.G.

I completely agree with you that homosexual attraction in very real. I sympathize with the problem, and I am not making light of it. I think there are also probably far greater sexual sins that acting on those same-sex attractions.

I’m a conservative catholic that doesn’t use birth control, so I know all about the joys of being fruitful and multiplying. I do think you may be understating the importance of marriage by implication a little.
Marriage is not primarily a way to properly satisfy those urges we begin feeling at puberty (though that is a wonderful part of it, that I am not against)

I think most married couples that have been at it for a while, would tell you that it is sometimes grueling work that is impossible without grace. It involves much pain, sacrifice, and choosing to die to self over and over again. I think God knew that loving my wife is the only chance I had at being holy one day.

308   T.A.G?!    http://trinidadsdagay.blogspot.com
May 12th, 2009 at 5:04 pm

Paul C Says:
May 12th, 2009 at 4:37 pm
TAG – thank you for your thoughtful comments and insight.
You are not justifying the ‘gay lifestyle’, yet you have given me some other things to consider.
Can I ask perhaps a silly question, but with all sensitivity and sincerity: does a person, like yourself, who claims Christ and understands the biblical stance on the issue, yet is homosexual, basically take a ‘vow of abstinence’ of some sort?
I know this reveals my ignorance on the matter, but any light you can shed would be appreciated.

—————————————————

Some people try to be celibate. I say there is no need to vow to do anything but follow God into the future. That sounds rosy but it is hard for some. It has made my life easier though.

I have told God that I want a family–and a large one at that. I always have. I do not beg Him for it every night though (if at all). I just hope He says yes and if so, it will happen naturally one day.

My biggest problem is feeling lonely in a general sense. You may never be able to appreciate how much of your own life you share with other people until you have to hide. Finding someone who understands what you go through–and went through back when you were younger is a big challenge. In America, much is made of “telling others”; but with the utmost respect I would like to suggest that that is a very White suggestion/phenomenon.

For African Americans and for people in the Caribbean (like me) or other conservative societies like Africa and the Middle East etc.–this is not something you can tell everyone at all. It could be deadly.

Usually it means you lose a lot of friends and family. And while that might not matter in mobile societies like the USA so much, it matter here where friends and family in particular define you.

This often leads to what may at first appear to many people to be shocking inconsistencies.
Many guys here–even not explicitly Christian–will feel very guilty about themselves and may believe wholeheartedly that same-sex relationships are wrong. But they will do it anyway in secret–and just simply refuse to reconcile it with their beliefs.
(But when you think about it.Many men who engage in premarital sex with their girlfriends for example also know it’s wrong “technically” but do it anyway so it’s not all that foreign a concept.)

They have the sense that “this is what I have to deal with so I will do the best I can to squeak by”.
Eventually they just marry a woman and move on. Others may never marry. And both types may or may not be sexually active with men as time moves on.

The other hard part is when people try to hook you up with a “nice girl”.
That is really annoying, but what else can you do? You just have to try to wriggle out of it and grimace to yourself.

309   T.A.G?!    http://trinidadsdagay.blogspot.com
May 12th, 2009 at 5:09 pm

Just to clarify: obedience is a daily thing. I don’t make any vows. I just try to obey every day.

310   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 5:15 pm

TAG – Illuminating and transparent comments. I appreciate them.

Here is a post I would appreciate your opinion on.

311   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 5:19 pm

Rick F: How about those who drive over the speed limit?

Ummm…..THAT’S not a sin when I’m road testing the hotrod!!

312   Brett S    
May 12th, 2009 at 5:50 pm

T.A.G.
#308

That was a very enlightening comment of problems I’ve never even considered, thanks.

I’m not trying to equate it, but I know a few infertile married couples that have gone through some struggles of loneliness and failure because they don’t have a family.

Peace be with you my friend; I admire your courage.

for when I am weak, then I am strong 2 Cor 2:10

313   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 12th, 2009 at 6:05 pm

Thanks TAG – again, very insightful and appreciated.
BTW, I live in Canada, but my background is Guyanese, right next door. My dad’s from Georgetown, and my pastor is from Berbice.

I used to live in Africa for a time and can testify to the fact that homosexuality is not acceptable in any form, at least publicly. I actually appreciate that from a societal standpoint (in preference to “anything goes” American/Canadian culture), but when it leads to murder and stoning like in the few instances I heard of while over there… that’s another story. Religion can easily serve as a cloak for many wrongs, though from an Islamic perspective, they basically and honestly believe (in error) they are simply upholding God’s law.

Thanks for sharing about your struggle. I can say that I have been educated from this interaction.

May God strengthen and uphold you in battle.

314   T.A.G?!    http://trinidadsdagay.blogspot.com
May 12th, 2009 at 6:16 pm

Thanks guys. You all are more gracious than the average by far.

Scott should I respond here or there?

315   T.A.G?!    http://trinidadsdagay.blogspot.com
May 12th, 2009 at 7:07 pm

Scott,
I think that as far as any couple who is unmarried yet sexually active (heterosexual) can be welcomed to church and made to feel comfortable there as worshipers; we can do the same for homosexual couples.

Many a person knows people who have pre-marital relations and still relate to them as friends; hoping to show them a better way. I think that gay couples deserve at least the same treatment we give our divorced or unmarried straight couple friends who are non-Christian.

The hurdle is that while a fornicating straight couple might be welcomed into a church setting with the hopes of them hearing the gospel; I’m not sure many churches would survive the scandal of a gay couple (unbelievers) visiting regularly and sitting in the pews.

As far as believers go I really think it is a matter for churches to make a stand on.

In other words, a church may come to the conclusion that gay relations are forbidden by the Bible and as such demand that those who come to be baptized show a willingness to turn their backs on sin. I see no problem with churches addressing what they can see (eg. living arrangements, alcohol abuse,criminality) and leaving the rest up to God.

Thus people who are not convinced that homosexuality is sinful but otherwise consider themselves Christian may indeed be barred from church membership. But if the church in question already has an atmosphere in which such a gay couple could attend without feeling out-of-place then I think in time that would be an acceptable compromise.

In other words not only are you free to attend. We will embrace you. Sit next to you and invite you for lunch over and over again every time you come and hang with you during the week. But if you want to join; this is how we view your relationship according to scripture and we ask that you uphold it if you want to become a member in good standing. And we will address this because it is something we can see–not because it is worse than other sins.

Some militants would scream that this is not full acceptance; but if you know where you stand then your demeanor will belie any of their accusations that you “don’t really love them”.

I think that the greatest problem is that church members do not know where they stand on the issue. They have a gut reaction, but they do not have a strong grasp of scripture. And so they feel that if they somehow befriend homosexuals they will forget whatever little scripture they know.

It would be intriguing to know if Pastorboy has friends who have premarital sex and if he alienates them as well.

316   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 7:25 pm

I personally would not give much credit to PB saying he has gay friends… PB tends to just say a lot of things without thinking… really his credibility is very low as far as the truth.

317   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 8:04 pm

I cannot ignore the clear teaching of Scripture concerning God’s will about sexuality. However I struggle with many multi-faceted issues that intersect that issue.

In the pre-Civil War south almost to a man committed Christians were racists; practicing racists that tore the Word apart to teach racism as God’s will. They taught and believed racism to be from God.

How many of those Christians are in heaven since they openly practiced sin and taught others to follow their example for the entirety of their lives?

318   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 8:15 pm

T.A.G.?! :I think that as far as any couple who is unmarried yet sexually active (heterosexual) can be welcomed to church and made to feel comfortable there as worshipers; we can do the same for homosexual couples.

I’ve always looked at church as being a hospital. Its a place where people go to be made well and whole. Some take a little longer than others but all should be welcomed there and feel welcomed.

319   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 12th, 2009 at 8:55 pm

I’ve often found that for Christians it’s always a LOT easier to really hate and take a stand against that “sin” which really has nothing to do with them. Maybe that’s why homosexuality is so easy for everyone to rally behind so intensely.

I’d love to see just as much energy put toward taking a stand against gossip, lying, racism, unforgiveness, lack of love, envy, covetousness, and…..well, you get the picture.

RA

320   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 12th, 2009 at 9:29 pm

#318 (and others)

The church is the living bride of Christ on this earth. It is a hospital FOR BELIEVERS.

If two people walk in, say they are believers, and it is discovered that they are sexually active, greedy, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler they ought to be brought under church discipline. They should repent, stop, seek counseling…whatever. and be restored. Or they should be tossed out of the church.

1 Corinthians 5:11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. 12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? 13 God judges those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.”

I know. It is just Paul,the evil, insensitive, not relevant apostle who said it.

321   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 12th, 2009 at 9:50 pm

Pastorboy: The church is the living bride of Christ on this earth

Maybe I wasn’t clear enough, I was speaking of the church as the gathering, building/organization, where people go to meet.

Ya really need to lightn up….

322   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 13th, 2009 at 8:31 am

I’ve always looked at church as being a hospital. Its a place where people go to be made well and whole. Some take a little longer than others but all should be welcomed there and feel welcomed.

No, they shouldn’t. The church is for those who have been made well and whole through repentance and faith and who are growing in holiness.

Unless they are unbelievers. Then they should see such a mighty work of the Holy Spirit among believers through power and love and uplifting of the glory of God inside of the service of worship that they see their need for repentance and faith.

All too often, it is as you describe. Unfortunately, in most churches today, the disease is never addressed, and so these poor sinners who come to the hospital you describe remain sick because they only get the feel good placebo instead of the cure.

323   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:00 am

The church is for those who have been made well and whole through repentance and faith and who are growing in holiness.

Seriously?!

People must have already repented to come to a weekly worship service in their community?

Seriously?!

324   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:03 am

What does the church sign say?

“You are only welcome if you have repented, have faith, and are growing in faith. The rest of you are SOL.”

325   M.G.    
May 13th, 2009 at 9:09 am

PB,

So the point of Christianity is to get your stuff together first, then God will forgive you and love you?

If you sin, then you must not be a believer. So get rid of your sin, then know you’re forgiven and a Christian.

Holiness comes *before* salvation. Interesting.

326   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 13th, 2009 at 9:27 am

You all are missing the point.

The church is not a building, or an institution. It is the bride of Christ here on this earth. Its function is to glorify God. Its secondary function is to build up and equip believers to complete the Great Commission using their spiritual gifts.

Of course people walk into the institution, into the building, and they either experience and observe the glorification of God by the body of Christ, or they sit and feel comfortable because there is no declaration of truth.

MG, That is a ridiculous straw man. Nope, we have no chance outside of God doing the work of repentance and faith in us and through us. God does the drawing, not man, not man made institutions. God. God loves us and the demonstration is that He sent His Son to pay the penalty for our sins if we will repent (by Gods grace) and trust the Savior (also by God’s grace) We can bring NOTHING to the Table.
But we also cannot worship the Father properly unless we have the Spirit. and the church is that which has been converted, saved, born again. it is invisible, yet visible locally. That building you are talking about? People do wander in occasionally. And either the find real medicine and a real cure in the form of the Gospel, or they find a placebo that makes them feel good, and allows them to hang around and be under a false hope that they have found the cure.

327   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:30 am

And here we get to the error PB teaches in his misunderstanding of Reconciliation… Note that the Church is not for the sick, it is only for the well… contrary to what Jesus stated:

Matt 9: 12. On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 13. But go and learn what this means: `I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

Note PB wants the church to be as the Pharisees of Jesus day? And Jesus states that the sick need a doctor as correction to the Pharisee?

PB teaching is false… he makes false disciples who think they must be perfect before they can come to Jesus and then must be perfect to come to church….

iggy

328   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:30 am

“but all should be welcomed there and feel welcomed.”

“No, they shouldn’t.”

Even Paul told the church at Corinth to be aware of unbelievers in their midst and on some level accomodate them. Some churches go way too far and make the entire service about unbelievers, and that is wrong. But everyone should feel welcome and hospitality should be shown to all.

In the early church they probably invited visitors to stay for the meal. Even saved people come with different levels of growth and different areas in their lives about which they are dealing.

All this should not alter the message.

329   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:37 am

You all are missing the point.

The church is not a building, or an institution.

Clearly, we would all agree that the “church” is the bride of Christ as you said earlier.

But you jumped in and commented on a conversation that T.A.G. and Scotty were having abou the institution.

So in all fairness, that WAS the point…the building, the hospital, the institution, etc.

330   M.G.    
May 13th, 2009 at 9:43 am

PB,

I was not attacking any position of yours, and thus was not committing the straw man fallacy.

Rather, I was trying to understand what you believe. That’s all.

So we don’t get our stuff together before becoming a Christian. God does.

So God makes us perfect, then we become a Christian, and we never thereafter sin. We know we are Christians because we are perfect, which is something that happens prior to salvation.

Is that right?

331   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:45 am

PB fights in one thread against an effeminate church then fights in this thread for the church to be the Bride of Christ….

am I missing something? PB must want a masculine Bride for Jesus? :lol:

People get saved and salvation is a process that starts with conversion and goes on until we die or Jesus returns. Only then is our salvation secure.

PB is preaching that we must sanctify ourselves and make ourselves perfect to be part of the Body of Christ…

But the bible teaches that we are only holy because Jesus is holy… we have no holiness to give to God apart from Christ’s holiness. We are clothed in His Righteousness as we have none of our own. We are sanctified as we abide in Christ and He in us.

We are immerses/baptised into the Body of Christ and in Jesus was found no sin… so as we are in Him we have no sin.

Now we all “sin” as we have this body of flesh and it’s desires, yet that is why we have a mediator, and that is Jesus.

So I reject PB’s false teaching of man-made holiness that one must appease God and I rest in the finished works of Christ who pleased God.

That is faith… in that is found true salvation apart from works through Grace.

iggy

332   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 13th, 2009 at 9:46 am

328
TAG is a perfect example of what I am speaking about, so is Scotty.

What they are talking about is an institution, which has no power to save, no power to change lives. It is no wonder it is not even really respected or esteemed anymore. It really is no different than a hospital or a country club.

333   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:48 am

The only sin I commit is envy…of Rick Frueh’s literary prowess.

334   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:49 am

“Epistles, read of all men”

Apparently, John, Paul was making the point that the body of Christ has the power to be used of God redemptively. We cannot save, but we can like Andrew we can bring people before Christ.

335   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 13th, 2009 at 9:50 am

#329
nope. not right.

We are perfect in the eyes of God, because we have been justified, and we have received the righteousness of Christ.

But we still sin. Therefore, this side of the veil, we will never experience perfection, though we strive for it, and it is not burdensome. In the striving, we are not adding to or taking away from the work already completed by Christ.

But this is really another strawman of the Biblical position.

So God makes us perfect, then we become a Christian, and we never thereafter sin. We know we are Christians because we are perfect, which is something that happens prior to salvation.

and it misses the point of what is being discussed.
what is the church?
who is the church?
purpose of the church?

336   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 13th, 2009 at 9:51 am

#332 Amen.

But we do need to bring people before Christ. Unfortunately, too many institutional churches are devoid of Christ.

337   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:53 am

What they are talking about is an institution, which has no power to save, no power to change lives.

Ah, but those of us within that institution who know the risen Christ and are being healed and sanctified by His Spirit are His ambassadors to the hurting and abused and rejected sinners who walk through those doors. And here they can be embraced and welcomed and loved with the love of Christ which transforms and leads us to repentance.

At least that’s my desire for my “church” group.

338   M.G.    
May 13th, 2009 at 9:54 am

Misses the point?

Ha.

What is the point of Church. Someone said hospital.

You disagreed. Why? Because Church is for those who have already, quoting you “been made well and whole.”

So what does that mean? Christian perfectionism?

And if not Christian perfectionism, then why is hospital a bad metaphor?

Would you prefer a doctor’s office? What about out-patient clinic?

You speak out of both sides of your mouth, PB.

339   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:57 am

The church invisible, the bride of Christ, is an intangible.

However, the local expression of that, the institution, is a visible and real presence of the risen Christ in their community…or at least it should be.

340   chris    
May 13th, 2009 at 10:08 am

You speak out of both sides of your mouth, PB.

Not really. Well I mean if you can somehow reconcile that the church “is for believers” and “churches don’t preach enough about sin”.

I’m not sure what to do then. When I preach should I preach about how we the believers are already awesome or should I preach about how we all suck? I’m so confused?????

Now that’s a great example of a strawman. Commence the knocking down.

341   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 10:35 am

PB,

Funny thing is you are speaking “emerging” language as that is one of the main things we speak of … the Church is not an institution… it is the Body of Jesus…

So when you bad mouth in ignorance about how bad the emerging folk are… think about that… we are teaching and speaking what you are saying.

Yet, the difference is that Jesus and His Body are for those who need redemption… to keep them out is contrary to the bible teaching.

there is a huge difference between a person misusing Grace as was done in Corinth…. the man who was told to leave was abusing grace and using it as an excuse to continue in sin… he had no want to leave his life of sin.

Paul later restored that same man to fellowship and that church forgave him.

Now, the bible does talk of churches… and these are institutions… these are the gatherings of those believers.

So you are only half right… and totally wrong in your application of who should be in “church” be the the institution or the Body of Christ…

If someone is not sick, they do not need Jesus, yet Paul is clear NO ONE IS RIGHTEOUS… so all are sick and in need of the Great Physician.

You are playing favorites and James teaches against this… you only want your approved “type” in your church and YOU are playing institution and not allowing the Holy Spirit to work in believers.

iggy

342   Jerry    http://www.dangoldfinch.wordpress.com
May 13th, 2009 at 10:37 am

in #336 Pastorboy says ‘#332 Amen.’

I looked back and #332 was written by Pastorboy.

Are you amening yourself? :)

343   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 10:47 am

Jerry,
With Iggy in moderation, the numbers don’t line up anymore.

I know you are only half-kidding with this question, but I’ll answer it anyway.

PB was “Amening” Rick’s comment in 334 about us being “Epistles, read of all men”

344   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 11:16 am

Pastorboy: What they are talking about is an institution, which has no power to save, no power to change lives. It is no wonder it is not even really respected or esteemed anymore. It really is no different than a hospital or a country club.

You’re priceless, a mind reader too!

No, you’re wrong…..maybe I worded it poorly. All the descriptions I meant was the act of walking into THE building, where SOME of the Bride of Christ worship. No one stands at the door with a questionnaire. I’ve never done a survey but, in the average Christ centered church(notice the SMALL c) there are some people there that aren’t saved.

Unbelievers should be made to feel comfortable in order to hear the message. It does no one any good if you offend them enough that they walk out before they hear the message.

345   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 12:01 pm

The church, the true spiritual church, is the living, breathing redemptive life of Jesus Christ. To preach the message of redemption without a living expression of that gospel is hollow.

The Chinese language comes forth from a Chinese man, and the gospel should come forth from a living gospel dressed in human flesh. Like touching the hem of His garment to be healed, so should sinners experience the divine healing and forgiveness of jesus Christ when they are in our presence.

Too often we have touted a message of redemption that is incongruous with our lives, and in so doing we have made the gospel nothing more than religious rhetoric. The influx of morality into the church’s message has been both counter productive as well as heretical.

Grace with a caveat is not grace. The disarming and dangerous message of the gospel is that purely by faith any sinner can have eternal life. In the abstract no gay many has to relinquish his lifestyle in order for grace to be effective in the same way no sinner has to give up anything to be saved.

And this inspection process by other believers renders them blind to their own predicament of grace. It is necessary to surround yourself with a compliment of human targets so as to insulate yourself from any introspection concerning the depth of your own sin.

The same believer who energetically quotes Corinthians concerning homosexuality will explain away the command of Jesus concerning saving up retirement treasures. In the end, much of the church has become a source for self gratification concerning a list of stances against sin and a list of orthodox tenants that we espouse to buoy our self righteousness.

A man rapes and murders your two year old little girl. As you sit in the courtroom waiting to hear the sentence of death on this monster, a man walks forward and tell the judge he will die for him. You are outraged since you demand that this murderer gets what HE DESERVES. You will not agree to any deal that lets the man off the hook.

The greatest compromise in history was the cross. It provides a way for every sinner to “get off the hook”, including you and me. It completely compromises God’s justice and without any restitution it eradicates your guilt. It is called grace, and we have yet to plumb the depths of its power.

And yet why can that man, guilty before all, receive that grace and leave a free man, only to use his freedom to castigate other guilty men? Why does that free man of grace find a ministry in reading the indictment of others instead of singing the praises of the One who took his place?

The cross has done away with the law, and let this good news be spread, by faith and faith alone Jesus Christ will save the vilest among us with no past, present, or future strings attached. And if the body of Christ was living and breathing that in everything we do, sinners would run to us, as they did Christ Himself.

346   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 12:35 pm

I repent of the sin of envy of Rick’s literary prowess.
It is an ongoing battle.

Well said, dear brother, well said.

Shalom

347   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 1:35 pm

In the abstract no gay many has to relinquish his lifestyle in order for grace to be effective in the same way no sinner has to give up anything to be saved.

Rick, can you elaborate on this and what you mean by “abstract”?

As I’m reading this statement as is, that is untrue. A man who has believed on Christ cannot continue to embrace sin. It is at the point that we receive Christ that the battle against sin actually begins – that is also grace in that prior to Christ we had no choice in the matter. There is a life to be lived, however wobbly.

348   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 2:04 pm

Paul – I am presently juggling many “what ifs” in my pursuit of redemptive truth. If a sinner cannot believe on Jesus Christ and receive eternal forgiveness by grace alone without producing a certain set of works to crystallize that grace, then it is not grace.

Millions upon millions of prefessing Christians throughout the centuries have practiced sin and taught others to do likewise. Martin Luther was a rabid anti- semite and actually taught that hating Jews was from God. Was he saved? Most southern believers before the Civl War practiced racism and taught others that it was God’s will for the white man to be superior. Were they saved?

Many if not most American believers save up thousands upon thousands of dollars for their own consumption and use and they teach others that this is God’s will for everyone’s finances. Are they saved? Many is not most American believers attend motion pictures with nudity and vulgarity and watch questionable television and they teach others that God approves. Are they saved?

You teach, Paul, that the Holy Spirit is not a member of the Trinity. Are you saved? My point is that many, if not most, believers are blind to some of their sin, even teaching others that the sin they commit is not sin, and they live their entirte Christian life deceived about their particluar sin. Are they saved?

Many believers teach that baptism saves, are they saved? My point is this: If no one can be deceived about some sin in their lives for the duration of their Christian experience then no one will be saved. And if grace cannot cover that deception then it is no longer grace.

Grace is not defined by compliance, it is magnified by disodedience, regardless of what kind of disobedience is approved or disapproved.

A practicing gay believer cannot be welcomed forever in a local fellowship, at some point he must be confronted in love. However, a practicing gay many can still be saved. It is curious though that in most American congregations believers are practicing hedonites and are actively teaching others to be greedy and pleasure oriented. In fact, many are leaders and preachers.

Jon MacArthur leads and profits by “Christian cruises” and teaches others to spend thousands of dollars on such frivolity while millions starve, is he saved? He even teaches that spending God’s money on such hedonism and overeating is God’s will. Have you any idea how much food is wasted and thrown out on these gigantic cruises that are called “Christian”? Is he saved? I refuse to let homosexuality be the justifying pinata that soothes the conscience of orthodox sinning believers.

If we are going to set man made guidelines based upon the Scriptures then that judgmental net will capture all of us.

349   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 2:13 pm

So Rick, to follow your thinking, if a person accepts Jesus as the son of God and his Savior but still continues in a lifestyle of idolatry (let’s say, actually worshiping idols) or homosexuality (as opposed to giving into temptation, he just continues), he’s OK? Grace covers this?

Not trying to nail you here, just understand your thinking on this.

350   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 2:15 pm

I should also add, anticipating your response, that I am fully aware – believe me – of my own shortcomings, failures, misplaced priorities and so on.

351   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 2:17 pm

Also – let me say regarding the Trinity… I have yet to see someone put together a convincing argument that this doctrine is borne out scripturally (I don’t deny there is a Holy Spirit, but argue that it is not a person).

352   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 2:20 pm

My initial reaction, Paul, is that you are adding to the gospel.

I’m with Rick on this one.
Conditional grace is no grace at all.

353   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 2:23 pm

So Nathanael, please address #349.

354   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 2:24 pm

#349 – Emphatically yes! That is exactly what I am saying in Biblical theory.

I am stating publicly that I believe a sinner can place their faith on Jesus Christ as their Savior, be translated into God’s kingdom, and be deceived about a particular sin and still practice it and still be saved.

That description probably applies to all of us on some level. It is what defines and showcases the grace of God. Our problem is that we have defined sin in a compartmental and culturally blind way. All of us are practicing sins of omission and commission – ALL OF US.

355   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 2:27 pm

I reiterate my previous statement:

Grace is not defined by compliance, it is magnified by disodedience, regardless of what kind of disobedience is approved or disapproved.

Rick Frueh circa A.D. 2009

356   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 2:31 pm

…if a person accepts Jesus as the son of God and his Savior but still continues in a lifestyle of idolatry (let’s say, actually worshiping idols) or homosexuality (as opposed to giving into temptation, he just continues), he’s OK? Grace covers this?

I believe that’s what defines grace.
Now in a healthy local body of believers, his brothers should be addressing this. Church discipline is often required.

But that does not negate the grace of God.

I think Rick’s illustration of racism is spot-on.

Grace, at it’s very core, trumps sin, whether repented of or not.

The love of God does lead us to repentence.
Healthy believers, though struggling and sinning and constantly falling short, are battling their flesh by the grace of God.

But grace wins.
Always.
Forever.

357   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 2:35 pm

Without sin grace is meaningless. Without disobedience grace is invisible. Without transgressions grace is without purpose. And grace is not just activated because of our sincere attempt to refrain from sin, for that in itself would be a reward for works and at odds with the essence of grace.

The greatest sin the church has continued to commit is its projection of a grace that is conditioned on anything other than faith. Broken down to its final residue, that is the sin of self righteousness.

358   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 2:41 pm

It is possible to elevate ‘grace’ to the position of an idol.

I fail to see where this is borne out in the bible (not just picking a scripture here or there, but as the message).

Quoting from your favorite source, Paul regarding the church (those who have accepted Christ and are active members):

1 Cor 10: For I want you to know, brothers, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same spiritual food, an all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ. Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for they were overthrown in the wilderness.

Now these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did.

Or… read:

- the parable of the talents (Matt 25)
- the parable of the virgins (Matt 25)
- the parable of the unforgiving servant

Contrary to your thinking on this, I believe that grace is the opening of the prison door (which we could not open on our own). The price has been paid and we are free. However, many of us never step over the threshold to the world beyond the cell. But those that do, and do not return to prison, inherit life. Many rejoice the door is open but never actually go beyond it – a travesty.

359   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 2:45 pm

If I come to Christ, and He imparts His righteousness to me, do I no longer need grace?

The older I grow in Christ, and I’m just a babe (11 years) the more I see I need grace.

The most mature men and women of God I know are decidedly aware of how much they need grace.

360   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 2:46 pm

Or kindly reconcile this for me:

“For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved. For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them. What the true proverb says has happened to them: “The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.”"

361   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 2:47 pm

Nathanael – I am acutely aware of the necessity of grace – ongoing grace. If the Lord removes his hand for a single day, I would be undone. I rely on it and trust that He will keep me… please don’t get me wrong.

362   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 2:50 pm

Paul,
Your prison analogy falls short of the point you are trying to make.

Your intial question regarded those who have come to Christ for salvation. So they are not just glad the door is open. They have taken the step to freedom.

What I understand you to be saying is that once someone comes to Christ for salvation, but continue a life of sin, they are going back into prison, and in doing so have lost their salvation.

Do you believe that you can lose your salvation?

363   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 2:53 pm

The exhortations to flee sin are voluminous in the New Testament, but they do not contradict grace. The human experience in regeneration is a profound study in imperfection and a less than wholehearted passion to live in the footsteps of Jesus.

Hence…grace.

364   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 2:55 pm

Yes – see 360.

Nathanael – I don’t think the prison analogy is off at all. I think it’s bang-on.

- you are dead in trespasses and sin: prison
- Christ opens the lock of the cell and bids you follow him
- we must, with God’s continued help, indeed follow Him (as we grow and mature we grow in Christ)
- if we simply acknowledge the door is open and praise Him, yet never follow, we are not saved

Christ was clear in John 6: you must eat my flesh and drink my blood.

365   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 2:59 pm

Rick – in this case I am wondering what scriptures you are using… I’m not denying the importance or power of grace, but explain to me just the couple scriptures/parables I mentioned.

366   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:01 pm

If my son Jonathan, born of my seed, grew up and rebelled against me and never followed in my “footsteps” and wandered off, would he still be my prodigal “son”?

Being born again of the Spirit does not guarantee a life of obedience. Hebrews informs us that God will correct sons, and Corinthians tells us that some believer’s lives will be wood, hay, and stubble and yet still be saved.

Any hint of works poisons grace and makes that which gives life the agent of death.

367   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:01 pm

Paul,
Your question was:

…if a person accepts Jesus as the son of God and his Savior…

This is a step beyond “…if we simply acknowledge the door is open and praise Him, yet never follow, we are not saved.”

That’s why I said your prison analogy did not work.
In and of itself, it works.

But it is different, at least to my reading, than your previous statement.

368   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:02 pm

Paul,
Do you believe you can lose your salvation?

369   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 3:09 pm

Nathanael – regarding prison, it is not works. We are called to be doers of the words, not hearers only, otherwise we only deceive ourselves.

Neither of you (Rick or Nathanael) have explained the scriptures above: 1 Cor 10, 2 Peter 2 or the parables outlined.

In addition, the people in Matthew 7 who say “Lord, Lord…” Did they not accept Christ?

I appreciate your sentiments and analogies, but can you kindly address these scriptures?

370   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 3:11 pm

Or what of the “unfaithful servant” who says in his heart, “My Lord delays his coming” (a believer) and then proceeds to eat and drink with the drunken (Matt 24)?

371   M.G.    
May 13th, 2009 at 3:11 pm

Re:369

I think just about every non-Catholic theologian would maintain that those who cry “Lord, lord” were never truly converted, and hence, did not “accept Christ.”

How else would you interpret it? That you were saved but somehow weren’t good enough?

How is that really saved then?

372   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:12 pm

I did not say the prison analogy was works.
I said, in and of itself, the analogy works.
It just does not support your previous statement.

Do you believe you can lose your salvation?

373   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:14 pm

The main reason we have such difficulty understanding grace is because we are void of anything close to grace in our fallen understandings. We cannot believe that grace can be completely loosed from a works understanding either pre or post salvation.

Martin Luther believed and taught that part of God’s Word was nothing but straw (James). Was Luther saved because he continued in such vile sin?

374   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:17 pm

I Corin. 10 was referring to the nation of Israel.
Within the nation, there were faithful believers and there were murmuring, unbelieving idolaters.

In the visible church of Christ, there are believers and there are unbelievers.

Just because someone says, “Lord, Lord…” does not mean they are a true believer.

Perhaps we are talking past each other.
I think Rick and I are talking about true believers who have unrepentant sin in their lives.

Who are you talking about?

375   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:20 pm

“And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed” (II Peter 2.2 ESV).

What am I looking at here, Paul?
I think I missed where you referenced this before.

Thanks.

376   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 3:21 pm

Rick, why not address the scriptures I brought up… trying to get my head around them.

Yes, Nathanael, it is possible for us to lose our salvation, hence the warning from Peter (2 Pet 2) or Paul’s admonition regarding Esau (Heb 12)

MG – with respect, that statement you made is false. These people accepted Christ – very clear from the text.

Here’s something to think about as well:

Heb 6: It is impossible, in the case of those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, and then have fallen away, to restore them again to repentance, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt.

Again, I think you are arguing sentiment or a historical theology (ie: Luther), but avoiding addressing this from the scripture. I am willing to back away from my understanding if someone can clearly show me…

377   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:22 pm

Paul – the parables can be doctrinally malleable and used to subjectively support one’s doctrinal perspective. They are more in line with presenting redemptive principles rather than the finer points of ecclesiastical doctrines.

I agree in principle with your prison metaphor, however once set free we are not watched to see if we warranted such freedom. Our release was granted with no thought to us and in full consideration of His finished work.

378   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 3:22 pm

Sorry Nathanael:

“For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved. For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them. What the true proverb says has happened to them: “The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.””

379   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:23 pm

For the record, I believe Hebrews 6 and 10 teach apostacy based not upon works of rebellion but upon a rejection of Christ.

380   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 3:24 pm

BTW Rick – I was born in the same year you were saved, so believe me when I say I have loads of respect for you, not to mention what I’ve observed in you through the blogosphere.

381   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:26 pm

BTW – I appreciate a spirited and respectful interchange about the issue of grace. Usually the conversation becomes an exercise in demeaning insults and suggestions of unregenerate status.

382   Brett S    
May 13th, 2009 at 3:27 pm

Do you believe you can lose your salvation? – Nathanael

Simple question, maybe not the best analogy. It’s not like you could accidently “lose” or misplace Jesus along the way somewhere.

I think it could be possible to give someone the finger, and throw away a gift he has given you in the garbage.

383   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:27 pm

Thanks Paul, back at you! I love your name!!

384   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:28 pm

For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them.

This is a tough passage, no doubt.
But I understand it to mean those who have been exposed to the saving grace of God and have refused it.

Going back to your prison analogy, it is the ones who see the open door but refuse to step through into freedom.

I believe the scripture teaches that those the Lord saves, He keeps.
If I can lose my salvation, then my retaining the free gift is dependent upon me maintaining some level of purity.

You’re saying you rely on grace.
But grace that falls short of keeping me in spite of my stubborn, willful rebellion is not grace.

This has been good.
Gotta run.

I’ll check in later.

Shalom

385   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 3:29 pm

I love your name!!

Big shoes to fill (just kidding)…

#379 – but that is not the context if we keep reading…

Heb 6:7 For land that has drunk the rain that often falls on it, and produces a crop useful to those for whose sake it is cultivated, receives a blessing from God. 8But if it bears thorns and thistles, it is worthless and near to being cursed, and its end is to be burned.

Nowhere is apostacy referenced here at all. Though in other epistles, Paul speaks more clearly of it.

386   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 3:30 pm

Although I would use different verbiage, I agree with Brett’s assessment. :cool:

387   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 13th, 2009 at 3:36 pm

Nathanael: But I understand it to mean those who have been exposed to the saving grace of God and have refused it.

Not so. This is what Peter stated very clearly and unequivocally:

For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first.

It is a tough passage when you’re trying to fit it into a prejudiced dogma.

As Brett says, perhaps “lose” is bad phraseology. We can throw away (esteem lightly) our salvation and lose out.

You’re saying you rely on grace.

Absolutely – every single day. I’d look forward to your comments on the other scriptures as well.

388   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 4:09 pm

I did not even know I was on moderation… :lol: thanks for telling me… is it because I thought the Ingrid as a Harpy picture was too much for this site?

I guess if you disagree with Chris L and Neil.. oh never mind.

Sheesh…

389   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 5:50 pm

Paul C, what would lead you to believe that 2Peter2:20 is necessarily talking about “true” Christians?

390   Joe C    
May 13th, 2009 at 5:59 pm

Hey guys,

Long time no talk! Back from deployment now, just saying hi, of course. Great talk going on here, it’s amazing how much we can diverge in position and opinion on such ’simple things’ as God’s Grace to us, and still be civil about it and realize we’re still brothers. Some would have us be doctrinally perfect (almost) before we’re on of the ‘elect’, thank God no one supposes that in this conversation huh?

Although I have been thinking as I’ve read through this thread, is anyone suggesting that God would ‘remove’ salvation from someone after giving it to them, due to their sin? Any level of sin? That doesn’t seem to gel with God at all.

Peace,

Joe C

391   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 6:01 pm

Hello Joe! Good to hear from you, welcome back!

392   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 8:19 pm

Welcome home, Joe!! Thanks for a job well done!!

393   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 9:49 pm

My thoughts on grace are here.

394   rabanes    http://abanes.com
May 13th, 2009 at 9:52 pm

My thoughts on the basics of salvation by grace – A Free Gift.
RA

395   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
May 13th, 2009 at 10:42 pm

All my thoughts that I have written on Grace.

396   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 9:20 am

Scotty: what would lead you to believe that 2Peter2:20 is necessarily talking about “true” Christians?

Scotty, the answer is found in the exact same verse:

For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first.

Did they receive Christ? Yes
Were they set free? Yes
Were they entangled AGAIN (showing that they were once entangled, then freed, only to be entangled again)? Yes

The other verses to consider are the ones I referenced above:

- 1 Cor 10: Paul’s admonition
- Parables: Virgins, Talents
- Hebrews 6, 10 & 12
- Matt 7 (”Lord! Lord!”)

My point is that God does His part wonderfully and is ever faithful (Parable of the Prodigal Son), BUT we also have a responsibility to walk in light. If – after we have received Christ – we walk in darkness (I am not saying we are perfect of course, see James 3:2: “For we all stumble in many ways.”) then we are not saved.

Consider this: if the prodigal son never “came to himself” and “returned” to his father, he would not have been saved. God is ever faithful, but He is also just. His grace is awesome, but this “once saved, always saved, no matter what I do or how I live” philosophy was not supported by Christ or the apostles.

If someone can properly give an answer to the above scriptures, again, I am willing to change on this.

397   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 9:25 am

“if the prodigal son never “came to himself” and “returned” to his father, he would not have been saved.”

That is manipulating a parable to align with a particular doctrine. That parable has absolutely nothing to do with eternal security.Nobody “loses” their salvation because they go into sin. Only an open rejection of Jesus Christ defines Biblical apostasy.

398   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 9:27 am

For example, you would have to terribly twist a simple scripture like this to fit it into your doctrine that one can never lose their salvation:

Heb 10: For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries.

Nothing to do with apostacy… It is an admonition to flee from the temptation to return to a former lifestyle (whatever that may be).

When we read scripture in order to prove a prejudiced point (starting backwards) I think we get off on a wrong foot right away.

399   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 9:31 am

That is manipulating a parable to align with a particular doctrine.

But I honestly don’t have a doctrine in this regard (or one that I’m even remotely aware of).

I simply through out that comment on the Prodigal son to show that the TURNING POINT came when he “came to himself”. He recognized what he had done and returned willing to be a servant rather than a son. The grace of God is manifested in the father’s response. But we also see human responsibility.

Just like the parable of the talents – explain the man who received just 1 and buried it.

Explain the foolish virgins – all were virgins and had received Christ, but the lifestyle for some wasn’t there, hence no entry to the wedding feast.

400   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 9:37 am

Paul,
This conversation strikes me as similar to predestination and free will. Both camps can pull out scriptures that back up their argument.
And they make the claim that, if the other camp can prove them wrong, they would change their mind.

From my experience, that rarely happens because they are convinced that their verses trump other verses that seem to contradict their stand.

In this case, I believe Jesus when He said, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.
I and my Father are one.”

My one contention with your stand is that, even though you say you are relying on grace, it appears that you are relying on your faithful following of Christ for your whole life.

When I say I’m relying on grace, I mean that I am relying on my faithful God, in spite of me, to keep me by His grace.

Does this justify willful disobedience? No. The Bible is equally clear that our Lord disciplines those He loves. If I sow to my flesh, I will reap corruption. But if I sow to the Spirit, I will reap life.

It just strikes me as odd that my initial coming to Christ is not contingent upon me getting my life together.
But my one day entering into the eternal rest hinges on me maintaining something that I did not do in the first place.

401   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 9:42 am

Explain the foolish virgins – all were virgins and had received Christ, but the lifestyle for some wasn’t there, hence no entry to the wedding feast.

Just because the virgins were waiting for the bridegroom does not mean they had “received Christ.”

The parable of wheat and tares as well as the one about sheep and goats indicates that there will be many who feel they are true believers but are not.

The “Lord, Lord” passage is they same thing.
I know you would agree that someone repeating a prayer after the preacher does not save them.

I’m trusting my God to keep those He saves.

402   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 9:42 am

I find there are Scriptures that support eternal security and others that support aposotasy. But the most obvious apostasy Scriptures in Hebrews teach a denial of Jesus, not sinning to such an extent that you “lose” your salvation.

In the context, I believe the prodigal son was saved and just “got right with God”. There is a Gentile/Jew application as well.

403   M.G.    
May 14th, 2009 at 9:49 am

Paul C,

With Matthew 7, you completely ignore the fact that Christ says “I never knew you.”

He didn’t say I knew you once, or I knew you briefly, or I kinda knew you. He said I NEVER knew you.

That’s the biblical paradigm, and it helps make sense of Hebrews and other passages.

People can taste, they can scream “Lord, Lord,” they can come close, but still somehow miss Christ in the process.

404   Scotty    http://scottysplace-scotty.blogspot.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 9:56 am

#398 Didn’t the Jews of Jesus’ time also have “the knowledge of the Truth”? And yet, Christ had some choice words for them. Was it a “head” knowledge or a “heart” knowledge. Millions of people have the knowledge and yet they’re doomed. Just as Christ said “I never knew you” Were they really Christians?

I think there is some wiggle room there as to who and what these people are and aren’t . Especially when one takes into account the whole of chapter two…..it’s a pretty big line up of some sorry folk.

I’m not saying my view is written in stone, just a possibility. I thought for years like you do until I read a commentary by Barnes in my e-Sword that just made me say Hmmmmm…

One of Barnes’ comments about 2 Peter 2: 20

There is a knowledge of the doctrines and duties of religion which may lead sinners to abandon their outward vices, which has no connection with saving grace. They may profess religion, and may Know enough of religion to understand that it requires them to abandon their vicious habits, and still never be true Christians.

405   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 9:57 am

Nathanael – In the scripture you referenced (John 10) I think context is important here. Jesus is basically contrasting 2 things: the true shepherd (Jesus) and false shepherds (false preachers/teachers).

I am trying to be very careful here not to use scriptures conveniently to “prove my point”. I believe context is important (As an aside, I have never gone to Bible college, never read a book on free will vs. predestination – I’m not a theologian).

My thinking is that in order to prove the “once saved, always saved” way of thinking, you need to ignore a slew of scriptures.

Personally, I am extremely dependent on God’s grace each day, more aware of my own weakness than ever before. I am aware that unless he helps me I am undone. But I am also aware of my responsibility to attempt to walk in light.

David understood grace well (it’s not a NT concept): “Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain that build it.”

We are useless without Him, but still we have work to do.

What did Jesus mean when he said?

“And he said to them, “Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able.”

Nathanael: Just because the virgins were waiting for the bridegroom does not mean they had “received Christ.”

Again – the context here Nathan. Look at all the verses before this parable (referenced the servants in the end of Matt 24 and the following parable of talents). He is speaking of those that received Christ. We also know this because he takes the time to show the difference between those who have a superficial faith (lantern, with no oil) and those who are living for God.

How do you distinguish “true believers” from false believers if both have made a verbal declaration and accepted Christ? Isn’t it by the resulting fruit?

406   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 10:05 am

Scotty: #398 Didn’t the Jews of Jesus’ time also have “the knowledge of the Truth”?

They didn’t recognize the “arm of the Lord” which is why Jesus said:

“You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me”

407   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 10:09 am

MG: you prove out what I am saying exactly (with your Matt 7 reference). Why did Christ say “I NEVER knew you”?

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”

It is the living that is important here. The ones who Christ rejected never followed His commandments, hence their rejection. Only by living for Christ can you get to know Him, as Paul says in Philippians 3.

408   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 10:13 am

How do you distinguish “true believers” from false believers if both have made a verbal declaration and accepted Christ? Isn’t it by the resulting fruit?

Yes, we are known by our fruit.

But ultimately it is not up to me to “distinguish ‘true believers’ from false believers.”

That is my Lord’s task.

You said we “need to ignore a slew of scriptures” to prove “once saved, always saved.”

You’ve posted the verses here and some of us are offering another possible interpretation. This is not ignoring.

And for the record, the verbiage “once saved, always saved” or “eternal security” are not phrases I use.

I prefer “eternal salvation” because I believe the scriptures clearly teach that once I’m grafted into Christ, my eternal life with Him begins.

At what point does the eternal life I’m granted in Christ stop being eternal because of some known or unknown delusion in my life?

409   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 10:20 am

Paul,
Now I am convinced we are speaking past each other.
You replied to M.G. with:

MG: you prove out what I am saying exactly (with your Matt 7 reference). Why did Christ say “I NEVER knew you”?

M.G.’s point (correct me if I’m wrong M.G.) is that these people were not saved and forsook Christ. They were never saved.

I think that’s the point some of us are trying to distinguish here.

410   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 10:23 am

BTW, the reference above: “does the will of my Father” is borne out in the parable of the talents. What was the problem of the man who received the single talent?

He received grace, but “buried” it… He didn’t become apostate, he simply wasted what was invested in him. And he was terribly punished.

Christ is looking for our lives to be fruitful. He did and is doing His part, but we are “co-workers” together with Him. Remember the barren fig tree He cursed (lots of leaves, no fruit)? That is highly symbolic, just like the parable of the Vineyard (John 15).

Each of us are given different measures of grace, so we can’t judge one another based on what I’m doing versus what you’re doing – that’s left to the Lord.

Sorry Nathanael – I am not saying you are ignoring the verses I brought up. I am saying that in order to justify the concept you’d have to either ignore or twist these verses which are clear.

You mentioned the word “grafted in”.

So do not become proud, butfear. For if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you. Note then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God’s kindness to you,provided you continue in his kindness.

This line of thinking – live for God and endure your entire life, don’t go back to your vomit – is the story throughout both the OT and NT.

411   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 10:25 am

#403 – Exactly.

#407 – Works.

There will be people in heaven whose whole lives were wood, hay, and stubble. But because they truly trusted Christ they were saved.

We must never enter the field of agricultural discernment which specializes in pulling up tares. (Or what seem to be tares)

412   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 10:28 am

Nathanael – this is a difficult forum to debate in :)

What I meant with MG’s comment is that you have to look at verse 21. The key is that they did not do the will of the Father. As a result of that, Christ said I never knew you.

These people obviously believed in Christ (how else can you cast out demons in His name?) but they were deceived. It is a very concerning scripture by which we are to examine ourselves.

Look what Paul says here:

“Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test! I hope you will find out that we have not failed the test.”

He is speaking to Christians, but again, it is possible to “fall away” from the faith. This is obvious here.

Sorry for all the scripture references, but I find it is important to revert back to the Bible rather than philosophers/theologians or sentiment in this case.

413   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 10:30 am

MG: People can taste, they can scream “Lord, Lord,” they can come close, but still somehow miss Christ in the process.

And how do they miss Christ? See verse 21.

414   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 10:32 am

We must never enter the field of agricultural discernment which specializes in pulling up tares.

Agreed. And nowhere am I advocating this – indeed quite the opposite.

415   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 10:36 am

Sorry for all the scripture references, but I find it is important to revert back to the Bible rather than philosophers/theologians or sentiment in this case.

I find this statement to be a little on the condescending side, as if the other commenters here are not willing to engage in the scriptures.

I must have missed the comments that referenced philosophers and theologians.

416   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 10:38 am

No Paul, you do not. And everyone appreciates your spirit and willingness to engage without malice. Your perspectives are well thought out and add significantly to any conversation. :)

(In a spirit of brotherhood I will correct you where necessary. :cool: )

417   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 10:40 am

I agree, Paul, that this is not the best forum for debate.

But I have enjoyed our conversation.

I guess my final point would be that if I believe that my eternal standing with God is conditional on my maintaining a lifestyle of obedience to the end, the result could very easily be fear…fear of falling away, fear of being deceived.

But we are told that perfect love casts out fear.
And so it is the love of God that leads us to repentance, not fear of falling away.

418   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
May 14th, 2009 at 10:43 am

#342
I am my own best Amen chorus… :)

419   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 10:44 am

I find this statement to be a little on the condescending side, as if the other commenters here are not willing to engage in the scriptures.

Not intended that way at all… Sorry if it comes across that way.

What I mean is that we can depend EQUALLY on the Bible and the theologians/philosophers that came afterwards, giving them equal credence – which is not to be the case. Luther, for example, did his job according to the grace given to him, but missed the mark on some things, as we all do.

I am thinking that we can come to the place of seeing the scripture through the lens of theology rather than the other way around. Does that make sense?

In a spirit of brotherhood I will correct you where necessary.

Thanks Rick!

420   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 10:50 am

And so it is the love of God that leads us to repentance, not fear of falling away.

Fear (godly reverence that leads to dependence) is not a bad thing – in fact Paul – scripture referenced above in 2 Corinthians 13 – and Peter and others advocate this specifically as a means of drawing closer to God. Fear of others and circumstances is what we are not to have.

Though I believe as I do, I do not find myself wringing my hands and worrying… I find myself that much more dependent on God, especially when I consider my own weaknesses. Grace becomes that much more real to me as the necessary ingredient without which I would surely fail.

421   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 11:05 am

Okay, my final, final point which is more of a Part II to my final point.

Rick used the analogy of his son always being his son, regardless of his life choices.

I said that the love of God leads us to repentance. But it also leads us to obedience.

When I grasp, even in a small way, the immeasurable, unexplainable, extravagant grace and love that my Father lavishes upon me without condition, it compels me to long to love Him and obey Him in response to my security in Him.

422   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 11:12 am

Amen Nathanael – me as well (regarding your final paragraph).

You will recall that this debate started when I asked regarding a person continuing in a lifestyle of homosexuality (or whatever).

So Rick, to follow your thinking, if a person accepts Jesus as the son of God and his Savior but still continues in a lifestyle of idolatry (let’s say, actually worshiping idols) or homosexuality (as opposed to giving into temptation, he just continues), he’s OK? Grace covers this?

The answer I received was a resounding YES!(paraphrasing), “It doesn’t matter. No matter how they live, after receiving Christ, they are still saved and can never be ‘un-saved’.”

I hope my point was communicated properly, that this line of thinking is not borne out in scripture – in fact, quite the opposite – and indeed, can be extremely dangerous.

423   Nathanael    http://www.borrowedbreath.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 11:19 am

Your point was communicated quite clearly.

I think we would all agree that our Lord is calling us, as His children, to a life of obedience and surrender.

I think some of us were voicing our concern that we do not make the grace of God conditional upon our obedience.

For the record, that was my final, final, final point.

:)

424   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 11:57 am

“I think some of us were voicing our concern that we do not make the grace of God conditional upon our obedience.”

Which is my current post on FJL.

425   Brett S    
May 14th, 2009 at 12:24 pm

“I think some of us were voicing our concern that we do not make the grace of God conditional upon our obedience.”

How about our obedience IS conditional on grace? Our obedience is required for our being saved. It’s all grace not either/or.

1 Cor 15:2
Through it (the gospel) you are also being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you, unless you believed in vain.

426   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 12:30 pm

“Our obedience is required for our being saved.”

Wrong. See Martin Luther for calrification. Or even better, see Paul.

427   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 12:54 pm

Rick – is there a scripture or series of scriptures that demonstrate no obedience is required?

For example:

If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.

or

Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.

428   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 1:05 pm

Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.

Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.

Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.

Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.

But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.

For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God

And there are many, many more.

429   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 14th, 2009 at 1:21 pm

Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.

This is dealing ceremonial law keeping, which means that we can never be justified by things like ceremonial washing or circumcision. That is demonstrated in vs 29 (regarding the Jews)

It seems that many of the quotes above are dealing directly with the issue that the Jews still maintained that in order to be saved you needed to perform the law in addition to believing in Christ. This was the crisis that reared its head again and again in Acts.

But in no way is this minimizing the importance of keeping God’s commands through Christ.
___

Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.

Romans 5 is one of my favorites. But in the same area (chapter 6), Paul says we are under grace, then goes on to say:

Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?

Paul goes on to say (Romans 8) (from Amplified):

THEREFORE, [there is] now no condemnation (no adjudging guilty of wrong) for those who are in Christ Jesus, who live [and] walk not after the dictates of the flesh, but after the dictates of the Spirit.

430   Brett S    
May 14th, 2009 at 1:23 pm

Rick,
#426
I’m not claiming to be an expert and your words may be bettter than mine.
I think that if we realize that “our obedience” and “our faith” and “our belief” is not produced by us; then our fear of “being saved” can be replaced by faith, hope, and love.

431   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 14th, 2009 at 1:28 pm

Not of works lest any man should boast. Salvation is by faith and faith alone.

432   John Hughes    
May 18th, 2009 at 2:00 pm

Not of works lest any man should boast. Salvation is by faith and faith alone.

Rick, I agree and if one is pressed to a statement of absoluteness I pretty much agree with your comments here. However, because the washing and rebirth by the Holy Spirit (i.g., regeneration) is a real (i.e., not theoretical) event it **will** produce works. A transformed caterpiller can walk and does, but his primary mode of transportation is now flying.

The whole book of James is a treatise on faith without works is dead those and other Scriptures such as the 1 John passages are the elephant in the room.

“Grace is not defined by compliance” but the acceptance of that grace through faith is proved genuine by works.

James 2:26 – For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.

In this discussion “grace” and “faith” and “justification” often become convoluted. However, as we all know, they are seperate, albeit necessarily intertwined, concepts. Faith without works is dead, but grace without works is a non sequitor as grace is a unilaterial gift from God independant of the actions (or inactions) of individuals.

Grace, by definition “unmerited favor”, cannot be earned or forefitted. But that grace when apprehended by faith does produce manifestations.

Works have no part with any aspect of grace, however works are part and parcel with saving faith, being an indisputable result of said saving faith in at least **some** modicum of humanly discernable expression thereof.

433   John Hughes    
May 18th, 2009 at 2:02 pm

modicum of humanly discernable expression thereof.

Sorry, I was reading that Karl Barth quote and got carried away. :-)

434   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
May 18th, 2009 at 2:27 pm

John – Concerning these “humanly discernable expressions” I would ask, who decides what are and what are not authentic expressions? The white, middle aged man who only curses occasionably, he’s active in a church (Sunday School and the whole route), and he is faithful to his wife as well.

He never cracks a Bible at home, has no discernable prayer life, has actually never witnessed personally, and he is successfully storing up hundreds of thousands of dollars to splurge on his retirement years as he and his wife travel around the world.

No one questions his salvation.

The gay evangelical doesn’t curse, he is active in his church, he actively studies the Scriptures and has a prayer life. This professing believer does not see his lifestyle as against God, but he volunteers in a soup kitchen, helps conduct an AIDs sufferer’s support group, he gives to African missions, and he has been freed from a life of drug addiction and a many partner sexual practice.

Many would question his salvation.

Here is my view:

* It may be that neither are saved.
* It may be that the straight man alone is saved.
* It may be that the gay man alone is saved.
* It may be that both are saved.

435   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
May 18th, 2009 at 2:32 pm

John – those are sound comments and I agree that:

1. grace is given solely by God’s goodness, not of our own

2. that without works, faith is not faith at all

The “elephants in the room” are more in number than James or John 1. There are literally dozens of scriptures, a number by Paul, that speak of the necessity of obedience and living out our faith. Of course, the Lord will judge every man on his own merit based on the measure of grace delivered – that is not our job.

Grace is independent of us. But eternal salvation has a lot to do with our response to God’s grace.

In the scriptures Rick quoted above (#428) it is interesting to note that every one which notes “works” is not dealing with living out our faith, but only dealing with the ceremonial law.

This failure to isolate the fact that Paul was speaking to Jews who were insisting that law keeping was, renders the word “works” a bad word. We essentially end up lumping all reference to works together.

As Paul said to those who received grace, “The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life.” There is a life to be lived.

436   John Hughes    
May 18th, 2009 at 2:33 pm

He never cracks a Bible at home, has no discernable prayer life, has actually never witnessed personally, and he is successfully storing up hundreds of thousands of dollars to splurge on his retirement years as he and his wife travel around the world.

Rick, have you been talking to my wife?

437   John Hughes    
May 18th, 2009 at 2:35 pm

James 2:18 But someone may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.”

My money is on the gay guy. :-)

438   John Hughes    
May 18th, 2009 at 2:38 pm

who decides what are and what are not authentic expressions?

The ODM’s of course. Where have you been over the past several years?