Hey Ken Ham: You Aren’t Being Persecuted

Hey Ken Ham: You Aren’t Being Persecuted January 9, 2015

545040_96718208 (1)Ken Ham, founder of the Creation Museum, is sporting a new look lately. No, he didn’t shave that beard. He’s not trying on skinny jeans for size. He hasn’t switched up his hair.

He’s just sporting the ever trendy and fashionable anti-Christian persecution complex that’s so en vogue these days.

Ken recently took to his blog to whine about the ever-growing persecution of Christians in America, of which he claims he is one of the chief victims.  What’s interesting about Ham’s examples of this ever growing “persecution,” is that his examples were absent the typical stuff that one would associate with religious persecution.

No rounding up people to be forcibly sent to the labor camps.

No churches getting shut down by the secret police.

No confiscation of Bibles, interrogations, or imprisonments.

Instead, Ham is waiving the flag of anti-Christian persecution because… wait for it…. he was denied a tax rebate. As he writes on his blog:

“Here at Answers in Genesis and Ark Encounter we too are experiencing an attack on our freedoms. Ark Encounter has recently been denied a tax rebate incentive by the Kentucky government merely because we are a Christian group that will proclaim biblical truth at Ark Encounter and because we want to freely exercise our right to hire those who agree with our statement of faith. In denying us the tax rebate that is freely available to many other tourist attractions, the state is discriminating against our Christian faith. They too are ignoring the First Amendment as well as other applicable state and federal laws.”

You see, our friend Ken is a modern day Noah and is building himself a big ole’ ark that he hopes lots of people will spend money to come see. As part of that process, he’s eligible for tax rebates, so long as he plays by the same rules as everyone else when it comes to fair hiring practices. However, Ken isn’t willing to do that. Instead, he’s insisting that he’s only going to hire a certain type of employee to build his ark: fundamentalists who agree with his ancient worldview. This insistence on discriminating in hiring employees has cost Ken a pretty fat rebate check, and so he’s understandably upset.

But it’s not persecution- it’s just loss of privilege. Ken would like to discriminate against potential employees, and since it’s a free country, he’s free to do that. However, in doing so, he’s opted out of the conditions that everyone must abide by in order to get some cash from the government.

That’s not persecution at all– it’s what those of us in reality land simply call fair.

In Ken’s blog post he also cites another case of supposed anti-Christian persecution: the case of Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran who was fired because he supposedly “stood up for his religious beliefs.” Unfortunately for Ken’s argument, this again is simply a loss of privilege. The reason why Chief Cochran was fired wasn’t because he was a Christian, and wasn’t for anything he believed: he was fired for distributing religious material in the workplace. The religious material he distributed condemned homosexuality, which is his right to believe– but what he didn’t have a right to do is distribute religious material to subordinates.

This is a case of what those of us in reality land call unprofessional. It is unprofessional to distribute religious material in the workplace, most especially when the individual is the person with the most power. Such behavior can create the appearance of favoritism, and generally create a hostile work environment for anyone who doesn’t happen to agree. People have the right to work in an environment that is free from hostility, and free from any type of religious pressure from their superiors. That’s what keeps the situation fair for everyone– including Cochran himself, who probably wouldn’t want his boss passing out copies of the Koran.

These examples are obnoxiously simple to the point where I’m sure even Ken Ham knows the truth, whether he’s willing to speak it or not. Religious liberty wasn’t attacked at all– what was attacked was the ability of one’s superior to turn the workplace into a religious environment, and the ability to discriminate in hiring practices while collecting rebates from Uncle Sam.

And that’s fair.

It’s NOT persecution.

Ken Ham’s examples perfectly prove what is at the heart of the Christian persecution complex: a desire not to be treated equally, but a desire to be exempt from playing by the same rules as everyone else.

In Persecution Complex: Why American Christians Need to Stop Playing the Victim, Jason Wiedel states the situation well when he says, “the persecution narrative can only exist in an environment of pride, because it is completely self-centered.”

Exactly.

Wiedel goes on to say, “what many Christians perceive as persecution is actually fear of losing their privileged place in society,” which is precisely what Ham, and all the others sporting the persecution complex, are really afraid of: losing the ability to be exempt from the rules that keep all people on a fair field of play.

These folks don’t want to be treated equally under the rules, they want to be exempt from the rules. There’s a big difference between the two.

And so, Ken Ham: no, you’re not being persecuted, and neither is Cochran. You’re just experiencing what it’s like to be treated equally.

But even if you were, here’s a pretty good rule of thumb: if you have enough cash in your pocket to blow it on building a replica of Noah’s Ark, the persecution probably wasn’t that effective.


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  • Sherlang

    Ben, you really need to stop making so much sense. I like irrationality in my bloggers! In all seriousness, keep up the good work!

  • Stacey (the kids’ Aunt Tasty)

    Ken Ham makes me want to lie down. And possibly have a couple martinis.

  • Smellin’ Coffee

    This kinda made me chuckle a little bit. In the mega-church I grew up in the 70’s, the pastor had a similar complex. He would repeatedly affirm that he was on the “KGB Hit List” of the top 10 people the Communists would assassinate when they took over America. In his pastors’ and youth conferences the church would host, he would have skits of people of armed guards breaking into the church as if it were being taken over.

    In essence, he created an “us vs. them” (as he did with those of other belief systems) and that led to power. Not sure if that is what Ham is going for but that thinking can be a ploy in obtaining power through gaining sympathy.

  • LimeyDave

    Or ten

  • DC Rambler

    ” He said, Hey brother Noah, tell ya what to do, build me a floating zoo ! ” The Unicorn by The Irish Rovers..

  • DC Rambler

    Bristol Palin jumped on the persecution train ( I’m following her on twitter.. I know.. it’s like rubber necking a car crash on the highway ) and she distills it down to, ” They took away the money because he’s Christian “..
    It’s a well known secret ( that makes no sense ) that keeping the faithful check writers in a constant state of anxiety about gays, atheists, Merry Christmas and Nativity scenes is the only way the God profiteers keep their private jets fueled and their wives in designer clothes.

  • Ben Arrington

    James 1:27

    The way I see it, my religious liberty is only threatened when I’m unable to care and stand for the marginalized in society.

    So it seems like the only threat to my religion is myself. Dang. Conviction.

  • M.A.N.

    I get so tired of hearing about the “persecution” in this country. Glad to see a well thought out response to it.

  • Falken

    I guess people can’t handle it when they’re raised with privilege and it’s being taken away by the idea of fairness.

  • Erin Knittle

    Good LORD. IF what Mr Ham want’s is persecution. Bring it. He can go live in Iran, North Korea, Iraq, Columbia….places where people loose everything right down to their life for the unwavering faith in Jesus. I could send him a VOM subscription. Think he’d read it?

  • LuckyCharmWA

    Wouldn’t this argument apply to Hobby Lobby, et al? All they wanted was exemption from a duly enacted law.

  • Guy Norred

    Honestly I think it should on any number of levels.

  • Well said Ben…the people crying persecution in the US are going so far as to try to redefine (ironic, isn’t it?!) persecution so that it applies to their WASP-y way of life. I wish they’d take 5 mins to google what real religious persecution is and be enlightened for once.

  • paranoid narcissists!

  • mopinla

    I’m pretty sure those who are truly persecuted don’t have the ability to speak up about the persecution. I’ll have to test that theory against other examples of persecution, both real and (in this case) imagined.

  • Ron McPherson

    I love that song!

  • Well, the truth of it is that there really IS persecution of that type in some towns in America. It’s not specifically persecution though, really – several cities have passed laws making it illegal to feed the homeless without jumping through a whole bunch of legal hoops, or just outlawing it altogether.
    Since these ordinances aren’t specifically targeted at Christians, it’s not really persecution, but it’s a damn sight closer than, “I have to actually pay taxes as a business – waah!”

  • JenniferGerber

    If you like irrational bloggers you will LOVE Matt Walsh.

  • Terry Firma

    Well said. Let’s keep saying it lots.

    Point of order: It’s not just Ken Ham. Fully SEVENTY-THREE percent of evangelical Christians — the majority religious group in the country — think they are victims of discrimination. Not only that, they think they suffer more discrimination than blacks, Jews, and Muslims do. Here’s the Pew poll.

    Religion is fertile ground for delusion. (Privately, I think that religion is delusion, but we’ll save that debate for another day. I’ll bring the beer.)

    The persecution complex is baked right into Christianity’s DNA. It’s refreshing to come across prominent (progressive) Christian bloggers who are willing to say that it’s an unsettling, unseemly, bullshit phenomenon.

    Let me add that, of course, there really is Christian persecution in a variety of countries, from Turkey to China, and from Egypt to North Korea. Over at Patheos’ Friendly Atheist, I’ve written about it a number of times this past year.

    Which brings me to something that, frankly, bothers me a bit. Hemant Mehta and I, on his blog, frequently defend foreign Christians who are truly being persecuted. Now, it would be nice if some prominent Christian blogs / news media reciprocated, and occasionally brought up how, elsewhere in the world, people who don’t believe in God are fired, arrested, imprisoned, flogged, and sometimes killed. Common decency and humanitarian concern would dictate that in the case of Raif Badawi, for instance, people of conscience speak up. Raif is a young Saudi father and a mild-mannered Muslim who has stated that everyone should have the right to make up his or her own mind about God. The Saudi government considers him an atheist. For his progressivism and perceived godlessness, and for “insulting Islam,” he’s been sentenced to receive 50 lashes every week for 20 weeks. His punishment commenced today.

    Where are the Christian media protesting this barbarity?

    I’ll tell you where. One of our commenters nailed it: “Not a single article on Charisma, or on Christian Post, or any of the right-wing news outlets that I’ve seen so far. They’ve got persecuted homophobic fire chiefs to worry about instead.”

    And poor Ken Ham, natch, in many cases.

  • Jason Wiedel

    I’m learning that those who promote the idea of persecution are generally trying to recruit my support. In America, the claim of religious persecution has become a rallying cry for the powerful who want to maintain their power.

  • Paul Schlitz Jr.

    The idea that Christians in 21st century America are persecuted is ludicrous to begin with. Mountebanks running Creation Museums is bad enough but what I want to stop are the Christians who are doing the persecuting ( of immigrants, womyn and gays for instance

  • Sherlang

    Yep. I love reading him just to laugh. I like to imagine Corey as the good side and Walsh as the dark side. Though actually it makes me sad that Walsh represents Christianity to the outside world.

  • CroneEver

    “Blessed are ye when men revile you, and persecute you, and say all manner of evil falsely against you, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad, for your reward is great in heaven.” But he’d rather have tax breaks.

  • Kerry Thomas

    I grew up and have lived in what is coined ” Deep East Texas” most of my life. The biggest discrimination I have seen was against people who were not evangelicals.
    I spent most of my career teaching high school and I have seen Mormons, Catholics, people with little religious belief left off organizations such as the National Honor Society just because they didn’t go to the First Baptist Church or similar SBC Church. ( and often the non-evangelical had a better GPA, record etc.)
    I became a a sponsor of many groups, including the NHS just to try and make the representation fair.
    So, evangelicals, don’t be telling me about persecution. I’ve seen you do it, first hand…

  • Terry Firma

    Upvote for “mountebanks.”
    Downvote for “womyn.”

  • Stacey (the kids’ Aunt Tasty)

    Grrrrr, I’d almost forgotten about Matt Walsh!

    (mumbling and cursing under breath “must. not. visit. blog. &%&*#”)

  • Sherlang

    So…hard….to resist…..!! It’s like i want my day ruined or something!

  • Stacey (the kids’ Aunt Tasty)

    Ding. Motherchicken, ding!

  • Shaun Lockett

    Ben Franklin saw charlatans like Ham all around him 235 years ago: “When a Religion is good, I conceive that it will support itself; and,
    when it cannot support itself, and God does not take care to support, so
    that its Professors are oblig’d to call for the help of the Civil
    Power, it is a sign, I apprehend, of its being a bad one.”

  • Herm

    Ken Ham in no way passes the smell test of Matthew 7:12, most especially when so self centered in interpreting how a secular constitution guaranteeing freedom of religious pursuit must dictate to its diverse spiritual constituents.

  • Shaun Lockett

    Nope: Unless they all believe EXACTLY as he does – in a literal 6 day creation and Adam riding dinosaurs and Eve looking like a porn star and Ussher’s chronology and Ken Ham’s Own Special Misreading of the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics™ and Henry Morris as the Fourth Person in the Trinity… – then they aren’t “real” Christians, anyway.

  • Shaun Lockett

    I heard him speak in the mid 90s, while he was still in the shadow of Henry Morris, and he actually said at the conference that the “Constitution was written by the finger of God.”

    I had no idea at the time that it would one day be proven with a 1st Century “painting”: http://bit.ly/1prfzfO

    ;-)

  • Terry Firma
  • Jackie Heaton

    Plus prison time and a fine he’ll probably never be able to pay off. I understand from another article that his family has managed to leave the country.

  • You know Jesus was a pretty ardent critic of the Pharisees who turned scripture into law. Ken Ham does the same by turning scripture into “science” and then telling everyone else what to believe. So if he’s persecuted, it’s by the example of Christ, not by secular or religious standards. So I tell him to shove it.

  • BrinKennedy

    I completely regret having looked him up… my brain hurts…

  • Seriously? Apparently, Mr. Ham has no idea what it is to be “persecuted” and discriminated against. I’m not saying these don’t happen. All I’m saying is that some Americans, when they are stopped in a routine traffic stop always have their cars searched. If some one from a minority group has a brand new luxury car, these traffic stops occur very frequently…

    When you are a member of a group that is systematically murdered and no one blinks an eye, that is persecution.

    Oh, I see what he means by persecution now. It is persecution if the government doesn’t give Fundavangelicals any favors by “persecuting” others. I see the problem now.

    As far as that fire chief goes, if he is truly serious with his religious beliefs, I wonder if he would allow his salary to come from homosexual tax payers. If he was serious in his convictions, he would refuse, would he not?

  • Very wise, that Benjamin Franklin. Sounds like someone else who I thought was brilliant!

    “So in the present case, I tell you, keep away from these men and let them alone; because if this plan or this undertaking is of human origin, it will fail; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them—in that case you may even be found fighting against God!”

    ~Rabbi Gamaliel (Acts 5.38f NRSV)

  • Never heard of him until just now. WOW! Talking about a circus!

  • I’m from Nacogdoches. I grew up here, and I know exactly what you’re talking about.

  • rrhersh

    It is more than Ham wanting privilege. It is far worse than that. Notice that in both cases the supposed persecution is the government refusing to favor one religion over another. He asked the state to give him a tax rebate to advance his religious views, and the state correctly declined to do so. The fire chief was using his position as a senior agent of the government to advance his favored religion. The government correctly declined to allow itself to be dragged into this role.

    Here is a good test for all such “persecution!” claims: as a thought experiment, replace the supposedly persecuted Christianity with Wicca. Imagine some Wiccan building an attraction promoting goddess worship and only hiring Wiccans, or a fire chief distributing Pagan literature to his subordinates. How would Ham feel about those? We all know, of course. The operative word here is “hypocrite.”

  • rrhersh

    Zounds! but that is one horrific painting. Were I to see it with no surrounding context, I would suspect it to be a parody.

  • Andrew Dowling

    Kentucky has bent over backwards so Ham can build his fundie-Disneyland nightmare . . .I’m frankly pleasantly surprised they actually stuck to their state law on this one.

  • Michael Prince

    That link…why? Oh dear Lord why??

  • I have kinfolk in Carthage, TX; which is not that far away from Nacogdoches. They have disclaimed me a long time ago LOL!

  • He would claim that Christians are being persecuted because the Wiccan refuse to hire them, or are proselytizing against them. In Ham’s view, if he does not have the go ahead to persecute others, then he is being persecuted himself. When one gets to think in that way, it is time for them to step down, for clearly they do not hold to the American basic values that everyone is to be treated equally.

  • I was wondering about that one, myself – wasn’t the fire chief, by distributing religious material while “on the clock,” essentially violating the establishment clause of the First Amendment? I mean, maybe I’m wrong, but I thought that fire fighters were agents of the state, same as police, same as teachers at public schools. But then, folks like Ken Ham freak out about teachers not being allowed to proselytize, too – provided the teachers agree with Ken Ham’s version of Christianity, of course.

  • Exactly. When in the public sector, especially in a government position, you’d want to remain as neutral as possible. The perception must be that all are of equal standing, equal consideration, equal treatment. When there is a “ruling” class of elites, “we are us, and you are not…” well, it is very easy to see how un-American that truly is. Which is why the government cannot make any opinion on any religion (period).

  • Al Cruise

    I remember when the grocery stores in our town opened on Sunday, and a local fundamentalist pastor said that was done to persecute Christians.

  • Shaun Lockett

    McNaughton is a hack, as a perusal of his other “artwork” attests. While traveling as a guest speaker at churches, I have stayed in homes where his paintings were displayed, and they are more creepy in person.

    I slept with one eye open and the lights on.

  • Shaun Lockett

    Love Gemaliel!

    Christianity survived and flourished, despite believers like Ham trying to turn it in a sinister and judgemental direction over the milennia. “The Way” proved to be of God, after all!

  • Shaun Lockett

    That happened in Mass. when they allowed liquor stores to open on Sundays in 2008. There were a number of fundies claiming it was “to keep good Chrisshun people outta church” (they were talking about the employees who welcomed the increased hours and “had” to work), but the best responses were the churches of all denominations (and non-) that simply added Saturday afternoon and/or Sunday evening services.

  • Kerry Thomas

    Nacogdoches is a big college town compared to where I worked….2A and 3A schools before I retired. Many of my students went to SFA, and their parents were scared they’d become ” liberals” off in the big town….( my son teaches in a small town in which he’s the only teacher that’s NOT a SFA grad…he said they know their subject, but their philosophy and outlook is all the same…he went to UT, thank you Jesus for scholarship money….and because he’s a UT grad, he’s looked at with some suspicion…)

  • otrotierra

    What stands out in Ken Ham’s tantrum is the absence of Jesus. Jesus is missing in Ken Ham’s comments just as Jesus is missing in Ken Ham’s theology and million dollar Noah’s Ark playground.

    At the center of Ken Ham’a world view is Ken Ham and his selfish refusal to understand science, philosophy, biblical history, historical christendom, and modern geopolitics & current events.

  • Trev

    I know Jesus’ tree shirt is because he is the Radix Jesse, but I canno help but see the white tree of Gondor.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Ten? I’d be having an involuntary liedown after 2.

  • H B

    1. Mr Corey: great job lecturing Hamm on improper use of the dictionary term “persecution”. Too bad he never used it. At least in the cited portion of your own article. He said he was being discriminated against. You might disagree but next time don’t waste our time with a primer on English use and composition of the term “persecution”.

    2. I don’t follow Hamm, wouldn’t donate to his park, and ain’t sold on a young earth, but I think I have more in common with him than the snob Christians who spend so much time deriding and ridiculing a fellow Christian.

  • Cynthia Brown Christ

    You took the words right out of my mouth. Just reading the titles of his articles just now made my mood go down a few notches. Here I can ramp it back up quickly though.

  • Cynthia Brown Christ

    I wish I could sum up my thoughts so easily. Love your post.

  • Cynthia Brown Christ

    Love your post!!!!

  • PAULA K. SCHMIDT

    Wow. application of the law is discrimination now.

  • Without having to defend Kenneth Ham, who i know little about, this Corey claptrap isn’t derived from Christianity, it issues forth from the mouth of the Empire of (false) Equality, which most brainwashed readers here seem to be perfectly content to reside in. I choose not Corry’s arrogant “reality land” but the Reality of God, which used to enjoy respect in this Empire of Equality but which is now expected to defer to Baal’s savage evolutionary and same-sex agenda and where the only people who can truly be persecuted are Jews and deviants, certainly not followers of Jesus. True Christians are not surprised, but that doesn’t mean they have to keep their mouths closed as liberties are more and more confined to the circle of politically correct. You think that if Cochran had handed out a tract arguing that Jesus embraced “gays” he would have been fired? Wake up, sheeple.

  • And Corey is also constructing or adopting a contested pretextual narrative when he says that Cochran was fired for handing out the book to “subordinates.” Cochran said he gave the book to a few people in the fire department with whom he had a pre-existing personal relationship. There shouldn’t be anything wrong with that in America land of the free, even if the bigots of Coreyland believe otherwise.

  • Would that Ken Ham would quit whining and work on his ” proclaim biblical truth” meme. http://textsincontext.wordpress.com/2012/05/03/creation-young-earth-ham-nye-genesis-one/

  • Would that Christians would step up and truly support Cochran in deed as well as word. Look at all the hate-filled, one-star comments on amazon by people who obviously have not read the book. There is a button by every comment to “Report Abuse.”
    http://tinyurl.com/mdvc15u

  • RonnyTX

    From Article:
    (snip) “You see, our friend Ken is a modern day Noah and is building himself a big ole’ ark that he hopes lots of people will spend money to come see. As part of that process, he’s eligible for tax rebates, so long as he plays by the same rules as everyone else when it comes to fair hiring practices. However, Ken isn’t willing to do that. Instead, he’s insisting that he’s only going to hire a certain type of employee to build his ark: fundamentalists who agree with his ancient worldview. This insistence on discriminating in hiring employees has cost Ken a pretty fat rebate check, and so he’s understandably upset.” (snip)

    Ronny to Ben:
    What I don’t understand about this,would fill a 1.000 gallon bucket and bigger! :-) Just what is this rebate check? Something that Ken and his group would get back from their state government or simply a tax,they wouldn’t have to pay to their particular state?

    And I was reading on one of those pages and saw where their project was to cost $173 million dollars! My I thought,these sure aren’t poor Christians,if they have that kind of money,to spend on such! And I also wondered,if they have that kind of money for such,why aren’t they using it to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ,help the homeless,feed the poor,take care of the widows and the orphans,etc,etc,etc? Just wondering,for as a Christian,it simply seems to me,that those would be much more needed and important things to do,as we follow Jesus Christ.

  • RonnyTX

    Shaun,in the local church I grew up in,a “good” Christian person, wouldn’t be working in a liquor store! :-)

  • RonnyTX

    Anan,it’s confusing to me,for a Christian to persecute anyone. For as a Christian,a believer in and follower of Jesus Christ,I am to simply tell others about the good news/gospel of Jesus Christ and how he has reconciled us all back to God,by way of the cross. :-)

    And I see in the Bible,where Jesus was not well received in a village of Samaratins and two of Jesus’s early disciples,they wanted to call down fire from God,on those people. Jesus Christ rebuked them for that and told them they didn’t even know what spirit they were of. And that he had come to save people’s lives and not destroy them.

    Then in another group,a Christian fellow was talking about how Christians are persecuted here in the United States. That floored me and I told him,he should look at how Christians are treated in some countries and how the earliest church was treated by some. People being jailed,beaten and put to death,because they were believers in and followers of Jesus Christ. Now that’s persecution; but as I pointed out to this fellow,we have nothing like that,in the United States.

    I also reminded this fellow,that in scripture,we have Jesus Christ telling his followers,In this world you shall suffer persecution;but be of good cheer,for I have over come the world. But most people I know even a little of and who go by the name Christian,they don’t believe that. They seem to have the idea,that they can and should be able to get by,without persecution,of any sort. Well,I sort of think,that if a Christian does,then we’re doing something wrong and or not doing,as we ought to. And by ought to,I mean being a full fledged follower and believer in Jesus Christ. Really doing and living,as he did,following his example.

  • And I’m Cute, Too

    Why not “deride and ridicule” Ken Hamm? He’s a public figure, and acting like a tool in public. Why can’t we call out our own when they make us look like jerks?

  • gimpi1

    I believe, in addition to his demands for privilege, Mr. Ham also engaged in false witness. When he applied for the rebate, he claimed that the “Ark Encounter” was a separate for-profit business that would not discriminate. He was outed when an engineer scanning the want-ads saw a job-listing requiring, among other things, a statement of faith.

    Mr. Ham lied when he applied for the rebate. Then he put up a on-line job posting plainly stating his desire to discriminate illegally. Then, he had the big brass balls to complain, when he was caught, that he was being discriminated against because the rebate he had disqualified himself for was denied. That’s not persecution, that’s being caught perjuring yourself.

    It looks like Mr. Cochran did pretty much the same. I’m not as familiar with this case as I am the Ark Encounter mess, but it’s pretty-much a no-brainer that you can’t distribute religious material to your subordinates, especially if copy in that material proclaims your belief in the inferiority of some of those subordinates. This is no more acceptable than if a believer in the old Protocols of the Elders of Zion nonsense distributed a flyer claiming that dishonest Jews run the world baking system.

    If you get caught in a crime (and violating discrimination laws or committing perjury are crimes) you aren’t being persecuted if you suffer consequences for your actions.

  • gimpi1

    Does that help with the “Illogic-overload” migraine headache? If so, I’ll pass the tip along to my husband. Mr. Ham’s geology always makes him ill.

  • gimpi1

    Yes, that truly is the criminalization of behavior mandated by many – if not most – religions. Making it a crime to feed the hungry… it just doesn’t get much nastier than that.

  • gimpi1

    Help! Help! I’m being oppressed! Come and see the violence inherent in the system!

  • gimpi1

    A true case of persecution.

  • gimpi1

    Well, to answer your nit-pick, Mr. Ham is not being discriminated against. He’s being required to live up to the law.

    His “Ark Encounter” is a supposed to be private business. He registered it as such in order to qualify for the abatement. Private businesses aren’t allowed to discriminate on the basis of religion. He signed an affidavit stating that the Ark Encounter would not discriminate when he filed for the abatement. He then put up a on-line web ad for a cad-cam designer that specified – among other qualifications – a statement of faith in keeping with “Answers in Genesis.” In other words, he lied on an affidavit for money, (both about his intent to discriminate and the separation of the two businesses) and then claimed discrimination when he was caught.

    Are you OK with his actions? If not, you might want to consider your views.

  • gimpi1

    What… Just what? That made no sense at all. Equality isn’t equality, there’s a “evolutionary agenda” linked to Baal, and gay people are are equivalent to Jewish people. OK, fiiiine… (backs away slowly)

  • Ron McPherson

    “True Christians are not surprised”

    I’m uncertain what your distinction is between a Christian and a “True Christian.”

  • Al Cruise

    Yes and a “good Christian” would make sure to go another town to buy liquor for themselves so they wouldn’t be seen by someone in their congregation.

  • True story: my dad’s side of the family was all Southern Baptist, of the variety that doesn’t touch alcohol. “Was” because all of his generation has loosened up somewhat. But anyways. My great aunt, though she would *never* drink alcohol, liked to cook with it. So she would send my uncle (and later my father) to get it for her. She sent them to the next county. All to avoid being associated with alcohol.

  • I’m tempted to respond, but history has taught me that people who say “wake up sheeple” un-ironically tend to be incredibly closed off.

  • Last time I heard the word “sheeple” it was in reference to 9-11 being an inside job by the illuminati and George Bush or something…

  • gimpi1

    I’m sure you’re right. There are none so dense as those who will not think. However, this was such a mish-mash of conspiracy stuff, I couldn’t resist. I have nefarious reasons.

    I’ve been working on a game called “Conspiracy Theory” for years. It’s played with three piles of cards, one pile has names of people or groups, one has events, and one has ‘wild cards,’ things that can be folded into any good conspiracy. The purpose of the game is to link your three cards in a conspiracy theory. The creator of the best (most plausible, most creative, most fun) theory wins. Knowledge of historical trivia and a good imagination are valuable. Because of this, I’m always interested in conspiracy, as long as it is plausible or fun. Mr. Leichty misses both marks, I’m afraid.

    My husband successfully linked Elvis Presley, the development of the Tesla Coil and (I believe) the Illuminati. He plays at the master level.

  • Oooh, that sounds fun!

  • gimpi1

    It can be. The few times we’ve dragged friends over to play with the prototype have been been a blast. At some point I have to get off my rear and finish the development process.

  • Shaun Lockett

    Amen!

  • Jeff Preuss

    From his own provided links, and the cases he seems to passionately take on, Holocaust-deniers seem to qualify as “true.”

  • The sickest and most evil part of this whole thing is that actual persecution is 100% alive and well in the world, such as the targeting of Jews for anti-semitic terrorism in France just recently, and merchants of insanity such as Ham just… muddy things and basically undermine efforts to help real victims. My God… it’s so evil…

  • Though it bears noting that they don’t actually have a religious conviction against birth control or even abortion — they own stocks in companies that not only produce the same birth control products they invoked in their lawsuit, they also own stock in companies which produce actual abortifacients.

    So much for persecution…

  • RonnyTX

    No doubt,too true Al. :-)

    And I never will forget when an uncle of mine,a Baptist preacher was dying of cancer. He was hard against drinking;but an irony was that one of his best friends in the local church,liked to have a beer now and then. But when my uncle was dying with cancer,one thing the doctor told my aunt,was to get some wine and give him some now and then and that would help him some with the pain,so he could rest and sleep better. So she was going to get one of their sons, also a Baptist preacher,to got get the wine for his Dad. And at that time,you had to drive to the next county,to get such. He knew how some people would talk about him,if they saw him going into or coming out of a liquor store. So he took his daughter and son-in-law with him and had them go in the store to buy the wine. And I can understand why he did that;but I still thought it was pretty stupid. I mean,why care what someone might say or think,if your buying such for your dying Dad,to help him with pain and help him to rest better?!

  • paganheart

    Yep, or buy it on the down-low from a local bootlegger or moonshiner….I’ve got a few good Baptists and bootleggers both among my extended family who live in dry counties in Texas, Oklahoma and Kentucky.

  • paganheart

    Sounds familiar. :-) When my paternal grandmother–a devout Southern Baptist lady who never drank and lived in a dry county her whole life–passed away about 20 years ago, the ladies from her church hosted a luncheon for us after her funeral, and the dish that I remember most was an English trifle that tasted like it was made with an entire fifth of rum. Just the irony of eating that rum-soaked dessert in the basement of a Southern Baptist church in a dry county….

  • You’ve got at least one backer for his Kickstarter, if that ever happens.

    [ETA: Reading comprehension fail – “You,” not “He.”

  • And this is why you should be careful about your religion even if the person you’re distributing to is a known fellow believer.
    If the boss comes in and hands a few people a religious book, but doesn’t do so for others, it creates the perception that adherence to the boss’ religion will help curry favour. And, in my experience, it isn’t just perception.

  • I love the parody, One Nation Under Cthulhu.
    Caution: The picture is kinda grody. Well, more than kinda. Put “jpg” at the end of the link.
    http://stuffo.hswstatic.com/stufftoblowyourmind/wp-content/uploads/sites/23/2014/07/HPL1.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Don’t forget “gays” in quotes…because we don’t exist.

  • Herm

    “Whoever comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and even life itself, cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not carry the cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. Luke 14:26-27

    Bruce, your leash is showing. You have the hate part down pat, now is a good time to stop and embrace the disciple part. Go the next step, disconnect from your bond to your traditions subject to mankind, pick up the cross and walk with the Holy Spirit only as your Counselor. Then you can know how far you were in the moment of your rant from doing to all others as you would have all others do to you.

    You and all other devout religious fundamentalists are willing to give your lives to defend God. My God can defend Themselves as an omnipotent one in heart and mind with each other, Father and Son, male and female. The image you project is very much separate from the God I know who truly loves His creation from the “big bang”, His enemy and most especially His children.

    May you find that joy and peace as a securely loved child of God trusting in the Father to fight His battles and yours. Ask and seek Him directly in all humility. You will find that your church relationship, with its influence in the way you are hearing the Bible, is not our creator God for He is the only Word who can speak to your heart and mind clearly in truth and love for all. Love you!!!

  • James

    Excellent article Benjamin!

  • Alf Penner

    Ken should set up a satellite office in Yemen or N. Korea

  • Chris Larosa

    I’ve heard ol’ Kenny interviewed many times on his pet project and, in his mind, he’s eshewing, essentially, Matt 25 for the ‘greater purpose’ of spreading the gospel with this boat-minus-water project. Let those ‘other’ creepy compassion ministries take care of the poor/homeless/sick/imprisoned saps – he’s got stars in his eyes with this controversial cutter that will bring him more fame and notoriety. Now let’s be honest. Let’s put our “reality caps” on snugly and think about exactly how many unbelievers will willingly visit Podunk, KY and suddenly, upon the mere sight of this massive wooden vision, will fall to their knees and cry out, “what must I do to be saved!?” Somehow me thinks that good ol’ hands-on/feet-on compassion ministry would bear more fruit and reach more lost than such a spectacle, but I’ve been known to be wrong…once! This $100+ million dollar fantasy project is so misguided it’s not funny.

  • You must really be desperate and blind to suggest that a fellow Christian belongs more to these ruthless regimes than to a heritage nurtured — and now under attack — in America.

  • I see nothing “formerly” about you, Big Ben. You’ve traded the mind control of Christian fundamentalism for the Rightspeak of American Liberalism. Baaaaaaaa. (That’s the sound of a sheeple, by the way. Read Solving 9/11 by Christopher Bollyn before you get too obsessed with Dubya and the Weishaupt gang….)

  • You wouldn’t know evil if it jumped up and clipped you in the whiskers, foxy old boy. This discussion is not about evil but rather about restrictions on liberties, and you and bendy Ben are the ones who are trotting out the word “persecution.” Ken Ham only used it in quoting Jesus — but you probably wouldn’t have liked what that Son of Man had to say, either, especially when he called the rabbis a brood of vipers and a bunch of whitewashed tombs. Some American Christians still actually believe in a level playing field, whereas others are ready to sacrifice our historic liberties on the altars of their new culturally- determined icons.

  • Jeff Preuss

    You’re a wingnut. And not in the fun way.

  • RonnyTX

    Just finished reading your post Chris and I thing you’re right.

  • Alf Penner

    My point is that Mr. Ham might think differently if he ACTUALLY worked in a country where REAL persecution is taking place. His equivocating and conflation does nothing but insult people who actually have to fear for their well-being because of their beliefs, not just risk not getting a tax write-off because they don’t want to play by the same rules that everyone else has to. Coming from a Mennonite background my parents and grandparents suffered real persecution in the former Soviet Union. What Ham is complaining about is just plain silly. YOU must be desperate and blind to think that Christians are ‘under attack’ in the US. Speaking as a non-American, I can’t help but face-palm at half of the stuff I read in the news that conservative Christians complain about.

  • Andy

    That. Was. Awesome. Well done, Ben!

  • Shaun Lockett

    Excellent, and much more relevant than anything McNaughty paints!

  • Andy

    I would buy this game

  • Shaun Lockett

    And how do we know that George Bush had nothing to do with planning/executing 9/11?

    It worked!

  • I point out once more that Ham didn’t say he was being persecuted, just pointed out a double standard which I’ve found that latter-day Mennonites (I am one) seem to regard particularly indulgently under O-Bomba.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Okay, so Ham didn’t use the word “persecution” in THIS instance. He’s wrongly crying discrimination against his project because of his (brand of) Christianity, and he’s cried persecution several times before. It’s different verses from the same “poor, downtrodden, Christian martyr” song and dance.

    You are arguing semantics. Give it a rest.

  • Would you want an atheist group to get the same rebate if they pulled a “Professor Raddisson” on their applicants?

  • Ooohhh…preacher burn! Here he is preaching to everyone else, and now you’re telling him what’s what.

    If my experience with these kinds of Christians is any indication, he’s going to get REALLY mad that you told him you loved him! :)

  • Herm

    Luke 6:27-42

  • Alf Penner

    Discrimination against Christianity or persecution. Same thing.

    O-Bomba. How clever. Your ad hominem arguments are tiresome.

  • Jeff Preuss

    O-Bomba…Was that a Ritchie Valens song?

  • Yes, he did. Here’s the original piece. The entire ending is all about “blessed are you when you’re persecuted”.

    http://blogs.answersingenesis.org/blogs/ken-ham/2015/01/08/fire-chief-fired-for-his-christian-faith/

  • Jeff Preuss

    Awesome. There’s the P-word. Did you see that, Bruce?

  • gimpi1

    OOh, good catch, Faith! Baking system indeed. Those onion rolls are dangerous!

  • Herm

    Ken Ham in that article wrote that Kelvin Cochran said, “I simply spoke to sex being created by God for pro-creation and He intended it to be between a man and a woman in holy matrimony—”.

    Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.” So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
    Genesis 1:26-27

    Jesus said to them, “Those who belong to this age marry and are given in marriage; but those who are considered worthy of a place in that age and in the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. Indeed they cannot die anymore, because they are like angels and are children of God, being children of the resurrection.
    Luke 20:34-36

    It really does hurt to see so many daring and boldly spoken fundamentalists lose their jobs and tax rebate incentives on gotcha moments. I know the feeling because as a child I have had to learn from just such moments. I can only hope that they learn from the Rabbi, too.

    As I understand it; God is male and female and eternal life requires no procreation. Maybe, my speaking so boldly might find yet, once again, another gotcha moment for me to learn from.

  • Are you a case of Poe in action or a real fundamentalist? I can’t tell.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Real, I’m afraid. You could Google his name for his escapades. He also provides a link to some in his profile.

  • One of my favorite things about invocations of Baal is that Baal was a fertility god, ostensibly making him (Him?) pro-life. Then again, internal consistency isn’t the hallmark of a good, obedient lunatic, so no surprises there.

    I also find it amusing that, very often, the same people so quick to claim God as their creator refuse to use the brains that He presumably gave them.

  • I find your categorization of an entire group of people as “snob Christians” to be particularly delightful. Apparently, circling the wagons and protecting a the feelings of either a misguided fool or a facetious liar is more important than truth and honesty.

    We will indeed recognize them by their fruits.

  • RonnyTX

    Chris,about you being known to be wrong…once. :-) Gotta tell you about this funny little wooden plaque I found last fall,at a garage type sale. It read;I’ve never made a mistake in my life. Thought I did once;but I was wrong! :-) Then another great one I’ve found,it reads;You can disagree with me or you can be right! :-) LoL

  • RonnyTX

    Bruce,I’ve been a born of God Christian,for nearly 44 years now. And the only ones I’ve ever really been mistreated by,were some of those,who said they were Christian. Now I’ve got my doubts,about some of them;but I’m sure not going to mistreat or persecute such people,just because they don’t agree with me on everything. For Jesus Christ tells me,that I am to love even my enemies,just as He has and does. And yes,this is coming to you from a Christian,who just happens to be gay and not heterosexual.

  • RonnyTX

    I agree with you Herm,that God is the only One who can speak to our hearts and minds clearly,in truth and love for all. And God taught me,that if I lack wisdom,I am to ask God to show me the truth. That really struck me years ago,when I saw that in James chapter one. For I had been brought up in a local church,where I was taught to believe,that all that came from our pulpit,was straight out of the Bible,straight from God and true beyond question. And I was taught to believe that in church,by the time I was 12 years old. So to me,to question what my particular church said,that was the same as if I questioned God. And if I disagreed with something that came from my pulpit,then I was taught,I was calling God a liar! And this in a regular old Baptist church. But then,I was also taught to believe,that we and those just like us were the one true church of God. But over the years,God did began to teach me better and I am so grateful,God did that for me! :-)

  • RonnyTX

    Herm,great scripture there! :-)

  • RonnyTX

    Dontcha know Ron,a true Christian is one,who agrees with everything I say! :-)

  • RonnyTX

    Right Jeff,for I’m not gay;but just fruity! :-) LoL

  • Herm

    Ronny,

    The difficult part is that we do have to respect and honor our carnal parents/guardians when we are children. We depend on their nurture no less than we, as free to choose adults of mankind, depend on the family of God’s nurture today. We must accept their teaching and the churches they take us to, of any religion.

    We can help each other who know God’s direct nurture, and those adults ignorant that God’s nurture is here for us all, by sharing God’s divine parental guidance in our lives today.

    You have helped by sharing that you have made the transition from carnal to actively trust in God’s real life teaching through your heart and mind. Our church has a Rabbi and High Priest who knows the workings of Heaven and Earth.

    Thank you so much for sharing your relationship with God!

    Love you!

  • H B

    (Glad you took such delight because it was a real joy writing it.)

    Feelings? Can’t say I’m concerned about Hamm’s “feelings.” Yours seem to be a bit wounded and for that, I’m sorry.

    “Misguided fool” and “facetious liar” you say. That’s interesting language you use, especially for one who would wax eloquent about characterizing people and “fruit”. Just a thought…

  • This is intellectually dishonest when your post-ers are making so much of one word. Ham used the word “persecuted” only in quoting Jesus, as I pointed out earlier. Jesus used the word as part of a broader blessing. As one who has also been reviled for his faith, i do not find the connection strained at all — nor do I equate it with the suffering occurring in many parts of the world where Christians risk their lives to follow Him. Somehow I am doubting that Ham would make that equation, either — so your disciples are jousting with straw men in their zeal to show themselves approvable by the evolutionist Intelligentsia. Also, “physics guy” knows but isn’t saying that many of his Mennonite forebears (and mine) in the former Soviet Union were persecuted not for their faith but for their wealth and social class.

  • Jeff Preuss

    From Ham’s post: “Thankfully, the Bible gives us truth and understanding in the midst of persecution.” Not a quote from Jesus, not a part of a broader blessing. Ham led with the introduction of the word persecution in his first brief paragraph.

    Also, he concludes the linked blog post with:
    “We need to be bold in standing up for biblical truth in a world that is working very hard to silence those who do so. I encourage you to pray for this nation, for the situation with Cochran, and for Ark Encounter.” He’s very clearly linking the two situations, and expecting fellow Christians to sympathize with his “persecution.”

    Wanna try your argument again?

  • Jeff Preuss

    Oh, good! I’m not that fruity, so I guess we balance each other out!

  • Chris Larosa

    That’s cute. Of course I’m mostly full of shit these days, but i pretend to be right. Most of my commentary found on RS and a host of other prog sites is founded on my 30 years of being one of “them”. Coming from decades of being a complete wacked-out right wing nutcase, homeschooling my kids, extreme fundamentalist church, etc..) I now have a somewhat unique perspective on all of this krap now as a prog Christian. I am very familiar with Ken’s ‘ministry’ as I was a braindead believer for almost 30 years of his brand of origins. Now I realize, not only his foolishness of taking Gen 1-2 literally and his insane stubborn anti-science/reality stance, but he has also fallen into this crazy modern day Pharisee mentality of “us vs. them” like so many ministry ‘leaders’ who spend their $$ and efforts on attacking everyone that doesn’t believe the exact flavor of theology and culture they adhere to – other Christians included. Instead of serving the poor and disadvantaged and striving for social justice (you know…all the things that Jesus did – DUH), he and the others are all puffing up for a battle they’ve already lost. What a waste of time, money, and the last remnant of his reputation. Yea, I think I’m kinda right on this one…

  • I would love for (and make whatever efforts I can to make) my fruits to show me as someone who calls out dishonesty and and stands up for the marginalized, and calling these monsters what they are is directly in line with that.

    Don’t worry about my feelings: they’re a-okay because, as a cishet white Christian male, no one is coming after me. Certainly, if you think my feelings are at all wounded by the sarcastic apologies and cognitive dissonance of some anonymous person on the internet, I’d likely attribute that to IMAX-size projection on your part, but godspeed regardless.

  • Herm

    Do I love the local drug dealer and gang leader in my ghetto? Yes, even as an enemy to the health of my neighborhood. Would I warn my children and my neighbors of the dangers of becoming proselytized into slavery to his/her spirit? You betcha’. Might (s)he consider me a snob in the hood? Probably.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Oooo, I hope the IMAX isn’t also 3D, because the projection is already making me nauseous. ;)

  • Nathan Aldana

    I’m pretty sure people like him think all atheist professors are professor raddisson.

  • Nathan Aldana

    I imagine this is because most people who invoke Baal as a slur or epithet only know of him as “one of those evil things listed in the bible as being bad”

    They know nothing about who worshipped him, why, and for what reasons. They just assume it was probably baby sacrifice and blood drinking.

  • Very good article. Thank you.

  • Score one for you, Jeff. I missed that reference. But my reading was still not inaccurate, since Ham used that word to talk about fire chief Cochran, not about his project — which was knd of a “oh by the way” point he made in the context of a piece about Cochran. Corey then chose to set up a straw man with his heading mockng Ham. Yes, Ham was clearly drawing parallels, but using the word “persecution” to speak only about the loss of employment of someone else, which many of us would indeed understand as a form of persecution (but Corey’s readers possibly only if it occurred in the former Soviet Union).

  • Where the money is now: strident antiracism, incessant Holocaust education, eased immigration, yoga in schools, legalized recreational drugs, polyamory, same-sex marriage, carbon emissions reduction, evolutionist ideology — there are a probably a few more, and the bent knee to these imposter offerings creates an aroma most pleasing to the fertility god.

  • RonnyTX

    True Herm,God created both Adam and Eve,male and female,in the image of God. And true as well,eternal life requires no procreation. In fact,all it requires is what Jesus Christ did for us all,on the cross and then what God does for us later on,as we’re born of God. For God gives life to all,eternal life and that,in a right relationship with God. Or as I sometimes like to sing it;”When we all,get to heaven,what a day of rejoicing that will be. When we all,see Jesus we’ll sing and shout the victory! :-) And as it’s also put in scripture;”In Adam all died,in Jesus Christ all shall be made alive. :-)

  • RonnyTX

    BTW Herm,you know the scripture that says God took a rib from Adam and formed Eve around that. Well,it’s been a long time ago now;but I’ve read that the Hebrew word there in Genesis,did not mean rib;but meant uterus. And if this is true,then God took a uterus from Adam and formed Eve around that. Now if this is true,then to start with,Adam was both male and female,in one person/human being.

  • RonnyTX

    True Swiper,persecution is alive and well in this world and yes, it is evil. It’s that, no matter who is persecuting who. And in my time online,I have seen some of my fellow Christians,complaining about Christians being persecuted in the United States. I’ve been known to tell such people,they should try going to places like Cuba,North Korea,etc,try speaking their mind their online or off and see how long they would stay our of jail or worse? Too,I’ve asked them to compare what they call persecution here,to how the very earliest Christians were persecuted and that written about,in the New Testament part of the Bible. How could they do that and not see just how good Christians have it here,in the US?! :-)

  • RonnyTX

    True,it’s hands on compassion ministry,that is what Christians should be doing. Both for their fellow Christians in need and for the world at large. For in this life,we will never run out of people in need,that we could be helping. And it’s that helping,that following of Jesus Christs’s example,that shows people you care and that there is something,to what you’re saying. But to me anyway,building a big,multi million dollar theme park,that doesn’t prove such and is merely a wasteful use of the money,that God has entrusted some with.

  • RonnyTX

    I think I understand some,of where you’re coming from Chris. For I grew up in a local church,where I was taught to believe that we were the church of God. We and those just like us,were the only true church. And the Republican party, was the party of God. (ha) And as I’ve told some Democrats, after I got online,you can see where that left you guys! :-( LoL Plus I discovered I was gay,at 12 years old. So I spent the next 28 years,being scared to death,that some one would figure that out! But in time,God brought me out of all of that and taught me to follow God/Jesus Christ and not people. Well,in church and as a youngster,I was also taught to believe the lie and sin of idol worship,that to believe my church elders,was the same as my believing God. It wasn’t and God later showed me that. :-) And not all of my memories of church are bad. There were the good parts too. And sometimes,if I could hear well,I think I wouldn’t mind, being in a local church. But with me being gay and the way I believe now on somethings,none would have me. Well,they wouldn’t,if I spoke my mind,about certain things,that God has shown me.

    Now with me,I do take Genesis chapter one and two literally;but not just like,I was taught in church. For the best I see it now,there is a large amount of time,between Genesis 1:1 and when God later,redid the whole earth.

    And you said Ken has fallen into this crazy modern day Pharisee,of us versus them,etc. And in large part,I agree with that. Well,I know a good deal about the us versus them way of thinking,for I was brought up in a Baptist/ Calvinistic teaching/believing type local church. So there,I was taught to believe,that God had chosen to save only a few people and at the best,God had simply chosen to let the rest,go to hell. Then a good many years later,God showed me better. So with me,it is no longer us versus them;but instead,it’s simply us. For all of us,from Adam on down,we’re one family. And before all is said and done,we will all be reconciled back to God the Father and that by way,of Jesus Christ and the cross. :-) So,we might as well try to get along here,since we are all,going to spend eternity together! :-) LoL And my,when I first heard of this way of believing,I thought it too good to be true! :-) But then,I truly saw it in scripture. Such as the one that says,in Adam all died,in Jesus Christ,all shall be made alive. :-) That and many more,which say the same! :-) And in God showing me this,that was simply God taking me back to when I was born of God,at 16 years old. Man had nothing to do with that and God had all to do with it. :-) And just as soon as God saved me,I then desired that all people then have the exact same type of relationship with God,as I then had. :-) I knew God loved me and that proven by Jesus Christ and the cross. And by the love of God pouring out upon me,as God showed me that. :-) God proved such to me. And because of all of this,I then desired that everyone,have that same type of relationship with God. But then,I had to go back to my local church, where I had already been taught,that such was not to be. And I settled in again,to believe and follow some people and not simply believe and follow God. But in later years, God showed me how wrong that was. :-) God showed me that all would be saved/made right with God,by way of Jesus Christ and the cross. And in all of this,God showed me that the desire of my heart would be fullfilled,just as that desire had been,when I was first born of God! :-)

    Well,I know of no local churches in my area,who believe and teach the above;but instead,all here are Calvinistic or Armenian/free will in belief. Both sides have somethings right;but both sides are so very wrong on somethings as well. Just glad I have online,where I can interact with some fellow Christians,who believe much more,as I do now. :-) And these are the ones,sometimes called christian universalists in belief and or those who believe,in universal restoration. Not of the Unitarian type;but those who believe we have all been reconciled back to God,by way of Jesus Christ and the cross. :-) And as I put it,each person will find that out,at the time of God’s choosing. So now,it’s just a matter of time. :-)

  • RonnyTX

    You’re welcome Herm and thank you as well! :-) And one thing that kept me part way sane,in my growing up years, was somethings my parents taught me,when I was very young. To treat all people,as I wished to be treated,not to look up or down on anyone because of what they had or didn’t have,as far as material things and not to think myself better than,because the color of my skin,was different from another. An in all of this,my parents also taught and modeled for me,that they simply loved me. :-) And then at 16 years old,God showed and proved to me,that God/Jesus Christ loved me. :-) And that,no person could take from me, no matter how badly,they taught me to think of myself. But the big sin was,some taught me to look up to and listen to them,as if they were a god,between myself and God. Well, we all are gods,simply because we are the offspring/ children of God;but none of us are better than the other. None of us,have any room, right or reason,to look down on any one. For all we are and all we have,is because of God’s love,mercy and grace,for us and to us. :-) And that is for every person and not just for some few! :-)

    I spent a lot of my 30’s,in deep depression and that because of how badly I’d been taught to see myself,in the local church. Then God taught me better. :-) And for awhile there,I was really mad at some of my early church leaders. But I came to see,that my being so mad at them, did neither them or me,any good. And I hope I have forgiven them? But when I think on somethings,I still get this knot,in the pit of my stomach. And what I most want to do,is in someways help those,who have been hurt just as I was. Help those,who are still being hurt. And that I have been able to do,to some degree,online;but I want to do more of that. I want to get back to that.

    Now,a partly funny thing. :-) I thought years ago,I had come out to this particular nephew of mine. But maybe I didn’t? Not sure? But one day he asked me,why I’d never married? And I just popped up and said,because I never found the right guy for that! :-) LoL Not sure what he thought about that? But I think that is when his wife,really started disliking me. My,if she can help it,she will not say one word to me. Now this is the daughter-in-law,of the older sister,that I’m living with now. And today,we are going to see her oldest,8 year old grandaughter,play basketball! :-) A long trip for that,of a 100 miles or thereabouts. But will get to see my nephew,his wife and their 3 little ones. :-) Two girls,8 and 5 years old and the little boy,he’s 3yo. I nicknamed them all,the little monkeys! :-) LoL And I love going to garage sales and finding toys and stuffed animals for them. :-) So,I better get off of here, in a bit! It’s past 7am now,I need to walk my little dog and maybe do a few other things? And then it’s off,to have some fun today! :-)

  • Herm

    Thank you Ronny for sharing a wonderful part of your life with me. I sense your cup of love is running over. I pray that your trip to the basketball game is safe and joyful. Enjoy your family! Love you!

  • Herm

    Something I have had to do is not surmise specifics in the book of Genesis. That book clearly speaks to a period in human kind’s history that only God could begin to understand. Moses armed with all the latest Egyptian higher education couldn’t begin to picture in his head and heart the depth of biology required of God to create an image of Themselves. I do know that the root of the Hebrew word translated as “rib” is used later to describe planks, beams and sides.

    I, also, know that sexuality and gender representation does have biologically both male and female components in each of us all of us with a different balance. This disturbs me greatly when throughout the patriarchal Hebrew scripture there is the insinuation that there is only one fully male example and one fully female example to live up to in order to please God. There are just too many binary judgments made throughout the Bible to be the real (true) life as God knows. Jesus lived and taught an example of full spectrum righteousness on Earth different than the binary righteousness which is judged to be so in the Hebrew scripture.

    Mankind is male and female in the image of God who is male and female. Each DNA signature of mankind includes what distinguishes us a species, male and female, from any other species.

    The Decalogue has not been fully honored by even the most literal Bible fundamentalists. Jesus made it easy by commanding we love our Lord God with all our very real spiritual heart, soul, strength and mind (the 1st half of the Decalogue) and love our merciful neighbor as we love our self (the second half of the Decalogue). For true students of Jesus we are taught that we also must love our enemy. Jesus summed up all we have to do to be righteous before God is do to all others as we would want all others to do to us.

    No judgmental religious fervor has destroyed more of its own kind, human kind, than the monotheistic descendants of Abraham in direct opposition to the righteous principals Jesus says are His and our Father’s.

    We all are different from anyone before, during or after us and our Father knows every hair on each of us.

    As an exercise I have gone to a crowded shopping mall where I could set and observe all who passed by. I never saw an all male and never saw an all female. I never witnessed a complete 100% gender representation of a man nor of a woman. Absolutely every person I saw was different from any other and each represented their own unique point on the sexuality and gender spectrum of human kind.

    I have come to a logical understanding in my studies under Jesus’ tutelage that love is the only bond that can righteously bond the infinite possibilities of different others into one healthy coordinated body, each working to support and be supported by the whole. The law of reciprocal love is essential to the health of the kingdom of God and all who cannot abide in our Lord God’s law must die. Those who cannot keep from offending, though loved, must cease to influence through intimidation and manipulation those who live in the law without end. God as a whole, of one heart and mind bonded in love, loves us all equally in Their image and/or as children of the Father.

    I know you know that, thanks!

  • Jeff Preuss

    So Adam was intersex? Interesting.

  • Jeff Preuss

    No, dude. Ham says, and I repeat with bolding to hammer home the point: “”We need to be bold in standing up for biblical truth in a world that is working very hard to silence those who do so. I encourage you to pray for this nation, for the situation with Cochran, and for Ark Encounter.”

    Ham is playing the “woe is me” card, which is not a new tactic for him, and Ben didn’t set up a straw man argument in the slightest by pointing that out.

    Also, Cochran didn’t lose his job because he is a Christian, rather he lost it because he used his position in power to inappropriately proselytize with his beliefs.

  • Jeff Preuss

    “strident antiracism, incessant Holocaust education, eased immigration, yoga in schools, legalized recreational drugs, polyamory, same-sex marriage, carbon emissions reduction, evolutionist ideology”?

    Honestly, the throughline from Nathan’s post to your response doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. Unless what you’re saying is somehow antiracist thought is an extension of subliminal societal Baal worship.

    Nope, wait, that wouldn’t make a lot of sense, either. I wouldn’t honestly think immigration reform or Holocaust education make a lick of impact on the fertility cycle of Ba’al Hadad. One could almost make a case that any environmental concerns could be pleasing to Baal, since carbon emissions and the like affect the overall lifecycle of agricultural concerns, over which Baal purportedly ruled in those early Semitic cultures.

  • Shaun Lockett

    We are all somewhat “intersex,” even though a baby’s sex is determined at the time of conception. When the baby is conceived, a chromosome from the sperm cell, either X or Y, fuses with the X chromosome in the egg cell, determining whether the baby will be female or male. Two X’s means the baby will be a girl, and XY means it will be a boy.

    But even though gender is determined at conception, the fetus doesn’t develop its external sexual organs until the fourth month of pregnancy.

    Seven weeks after conception, you can see from the front that the fetus appears to be sexually indifferent, looking neither like a male or a female.

    Over the next five weeks, the fetus begins producing hormones that cause its sex organs to grow into either male or female organs. This process is called sexual differentiation.

    And even though gender is pre-determined, sexual differention at this point can go either way, with all kinds of variations.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Of course. We’ve seen that sort of thing with the rare cases of someone possessing XXY or XYY sets.

    We could apply that intersex status at conception to the Genesis parable, by further establishing that point is the conception of the entire human race, and as yet, Adam’s final gender hadn’t been fully established (and by extension any other humans), using the uterus-instead-of-rib concept Ronny shared.

  • Shaun Lockett

    Agreed. There is so much more going on in the two conflicting creation accounts that attempting to turn them into science is rather foolish. Augustine saw this early on, and someone like Ham, who thinks he can simplify it all into a neatly wrapped little package of phobias and disinformation, is absurd.

    Of course, Ham can believe whatever he believes, and will not be condemned by me: he’s a believer in Jesus Christ. Whether I like it or not, God’s tent is infinite, and God will invite whomever believes into it.

    Where Morris, Ham, and other young-earth Creationists go too far is by demanding that we believe precisely as they do about origins, or we are not saved. I have heard both of them say this in the past, it is found in their writings, and it is wrong, as it adds a “condition” to belief in Jesus Christ to receive salvation.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Yup. One of my pet peeves is when someone asserts that my faith in Jesus is simply not good enough, based on some doctrinal condition that somehow invalidates my profession of belief.

  • RonnyTX

    Jeff to Ronny:
    So Adam was intersex? Interesting.

    Ronny to Jeff:
    Jeff,I think he must of been. Just wish I could find that real good page,I once read on this. But if we think about it,God formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into him the breath of life and man became a living soul. But God took something out of Adam and used that,to form Eve. When I think about it,it sure does seem to be saying,that the female part was also in Adam,before God took that out and formed another human being,from such.

  • RonnyTX

    Herm:
    (snip)Jesus said to them, “Those who belong to this age marry and are given in marriage; but those who are considered worthy of a place in that age and in the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. Indeed they cannot die anymore, because they are like angels and are children of God, being children of the resurrection. Luke 20:34-36

    Ronny to Herm:
    It is interesting,that so many place such emphasis on marriage and who they say should only be allowed to marry; but yet as a scripture says here,in an age to come,none will marry and will be like the angels.

    Wish I wasn’t so tired tonight Herm, :-) For a part of the scripture you quote here,has got me thinking about something. In Ephesians chapter 1 or 2,Paul speaks of the ages to come. So,that’s at least two more ages,that we have to go. Makes me wonder if in the next age,the one right after this one,people will still be marrying?

  • RonnyTX

    Herm:
    (snip)”As I understand it; God is male and female and eternal life requires no procreation. Maybe, my speaking so boldly might find yet, once again, another gotcha moment for me to learn from.(snip)

    Ronny to Herm:
    Well,if it does Herm,you can rest assured,that we all have those gotcha moments! :-) And I’m not going to say God is male and female;but then,I’m not going to say God isn’t, either. :-) Will just say,I don’t know or understand that. And you’re right,that eternal life requires no procreation. But being born again/born of God,does require,God raising us from the dead. And the way I see it now,what God does for one and for some,God will do for all. :-) But the timing for each person,simply coming at the time of God’s choosing.

  • RonnyTX

    Shaun,something that has interested me for a long time,is that I’m male;but at some point in my life,probably in my 40’s,I did a lot of thinking,about my early growing up years. And I realized,that at family get to gathers,I always more like to hear what the older females of the family were talking about. Well,the older guys than me,they were more interested in sports,their cars and trucks and things like that; but the older females,they talked more about personal relationships,family history and things of that nature. And I just found such as that,a lot more interesting to me. Then I took some sort of online test,a number of years ago and it showed my brain/my thinking,was something like 60% or more female. :-) Just kind of an interesting thing to me, since I’m in a male body and definately see myself as male and always have.

  • RonnyTX

    You’re welcome Herm. :-)

    And one scripture I really like,is where Jesus Christ says in so many words,if you love those who love you,so what? For everyone does that! Then he goes on to tell us,that we are to love our enemies,just as God the Father does. :-) And I think it becomes easier to love some one like that,when we really get it down in our head and heart,that God/Jesus Christ,loves us one and all-with no exceptions. :-)

    And another thing I’m thinking on tonight is, :-) when some fellow Christians online,really got onto me about my being gay,saying I couldn’t be a Christian unless I was heterosexual,etc. When some told me this,I asked them then,if they believed that Jesus Christ was heterosexual? Never could get any of them to answer that. :-) But now, after reading more in this thread tonight,I have got to wondering about something? :-) Since I believe,as best I can see it now,that the first Adam was intersex ,as origionally created and not male,until Eve was taken out of him-then I have to wonder,was the 2nd Adam,Jesus Christ,what we would call male,female or intersex/both in one? I don’t know? But just saying,I’ve now got to wondering about it. And if some people knew I was,they would be condemning me just for wondering,etc! :-) LoL

  • RonnyTX

    Gimpi1,I was sure wondering about some of that,as well?! :-) And I’m gay and part Jewish on my Mom’s side of the family;but blamed, I’m still way confused,about what Bruce said?! :-) Seriously though, :-) I do wish he would slow down and be a lot more clearer,in what he’s trying to say.

  • RonnyTX

    You’re welcome Herm and love you too. :-) And I did have a great time today,watching that little 8 year old great niece of mine,play basketball. :-) She and another little girl were guarding each other. At times,they really crowded each other! And got mad at each other! (ha) One of the referees, he had to get on to them once,about that! :-) LoL My,I do love to watch them little ones play basketball too! Had rather watch them any day,than the highest paid professionals! :-)

    And yes,it could easily be said,that my cup of love is running over. :-) And that certainly not,from the Calvinism,that I was brought up under and once taught to believe. No,it comes from what I came to see,just about 5 years ago now. That all of us,from Adam on down,have been reconciled back to God the Father,by way of Jesus Christ and the cross. :-) And that each person will come to know and see the truth of that,at the time of God’s choosing. So,we are all right with God and it’s just,that some don’t know that yet;but in time,everyone will know such. :-) And Herm,I know I’ve probably said this in here before;but now I can go out in public,see all kinds of people and be so happy. Well,for one thing,knowing that we all will have all of eternity,to get to meet and know each other. :-) And now too,I can walk down by a local cemetery,as I walk my little dog and sometimes I start to sing;not,When the roll is called up yonder,I’ll be there;but instead singing,When the roll is called up yonder,we’ll all be there! :-)

  • Shaun Lockett

    I think we both are proof that gender “typing” is BS. I’ve always enjoyed cooking, sewing, music, and poetry, and those things are thought of as “girly” by so many, still. I’ve had many more female friends than males over the years, and when I was growing up, that was thought of as strange.

    I’ve never been interested in or attracted to males, but I’ve always been aware of a “female” side of my personality

    As I’ve aged, I found I never had problems with the sexism or awkwardness many of my middle-aged peers, and understanding the “feminine” side of others and my personas has led to deeply intimate and enjoyable relationships, both male and female.

    As Herm wrote earlier, the idea “there is only one fully male example and one fully female example to live up to in order to please God” is ridicous. We all exist on a spectrum, and it is one that is constantly changing.

  • RonnyTX

    Andy:
    One of my favorite things about invocations of Baal is that Baal was a fertility god, ostensibly making him (Him?) pro-life. Then again, internal consistency isn’t the hallmark of a good, obedient lunatic, so no surprises there.

    Ronny to Andy:
    Yes,as best I understand it,Baal was a fertility god and so was Moloch and a number of others,that went by other names. But I wouldn’t call that religion and the worship of such,pro-life. Why not? Because as a part of that type religion,the people would take an infant child of theirs and put it on a metal idol,of their god. One,that their priests had built a fire in. And so in this religion,they would actually burn up/sacrifice,some of their infant children,in worship of their god. :-(

    Andy:
    I also find it amusing that, very often, the same people so quick to claim God as their creator refuse to use the brains that He presumably gave them.

    Ronny to Andy:
    Andy,they simply don’t know any better,when spouting off some things. I know,been there and done that myself. Believed just about everything I was taught in church,by some people and believed it,just as if God had told me such. And I’m not saying,that all I was taught in church was lies,for that wouldn’t be true either;but much I was taught to believe,in the local church,was not of God and was not true. Do I believe that God created me? Yes,I do. And you as well. :-) Well,God has created us all and God loves us all and one day,we will all know that. :-) But in the meantime,we do need to somehow learn,to get along better;but I’m not sure,how that can be done?

  • RonnyTX

    Nathan to Andy:
    I imagine this is because most people who invoke Baal as a slur or epithet only know of him as “one of those evil things listed in the bible as being bad”
    They know nothing about who worshipped him, why, and for what reasons. They just assume it was probably baby sacrifice and blood drinking.

    Ronny to Nathan:
    Well Nathan,when it came to things like Baal, Molech, etc,of old,that did take in infant/baby sacrifices. And it wasn’t just the people of Canaan and those about,who did that. But more than a few of the Old Testament Hebrew people, started doing the same,as they followed the fertility type religion. They would put an infant child of theirs,on a metal idol of the fertility god,inside that idol, would be a fire burning,that the priests had started and they would burn those infants up. :-( And there is a scripture in the Old Testament part of the Bible, where God said,He never even thought to tell them,to do such!
    And yes,I know. You have all sorts of Christians telling people,that there is a Jesus Christ created hell,of eternal torment. Only thing is,that’s not true. For there is no such hell mentioned in the Bible,neither in the Old or New Testament, as it was written in Hebrew and Greek. So where did such a teaching about a hell of eternal torment come from? It came from pagan religion and not from God and not from the Bible,as written in Hebrew and Greek. But the pagan teaching of hell,did get passed down into Roman Catholicism and then into Protestantism. Well, down through the last 2,000 years,quite a number of things have been taught as coming from God,that never came from God/Jesus Christ. And the earliest Christians, did not teach a Jesus Christ created hell,of eternal torment;but instead,they taught universal reconciliation. That everyone was made right with God the Father,by way of Jesus Christ and the cross. And that everyone, would eventually know that. :-) And they will;but the timing for each person,coming at the time of God’s choosing.

  • RonnyTX

    There ya go Jeff! :-) LoL

  • RonnyTX

    Shaun,now that’s funny! :-) But I will give ol’ George Bush this. I suspect he would be a fun guy,to go fishing with! :-)

  • RonnyTX

    Good point,very good point. For I/we can love someone and not even in the least agree with somethings they do. Thing that hurt both themselves and others.

  • RonnyTX

    Faith is,I read something the other day about Ken Ham and Ray Comfort;but have done so much reading and thinking lately,I would have to go back and read that again,to really remember it! :-) But thinking about,how I’ve seen Ray Comfor’s show on TV and have seen how he obviously believes he can scare people into heaven, by threatening them with hell. He’s real big on that! :-( Also thinking about that younger guy on his program,that he roped into that way of thinking and threatening,as well. :-( Hated to see that,for many years ago,I had a big time crush, on that cute guy! :-)

  • RonnyTX

    Ah Kerry,I don’t doubt what you say here! :-( And I’m up her in what I describe as rural,small town NE Texas. Thinking about how I was brought up in a supposedly all white church,community and school. I say supposedly,because too many of us,as it turns out,were actually part black. :-) But I guess appearance,what seemed to appear on the outside,was more important,than what was actually true? And it wouldn’t of mattered,if some kids right down the road,would of been took to church,every week. They still couldn’t of attended the school,I went to. Why not? Because they were black and my school district,was solid white or supposedly so. And I know of no family here,who had land for sale,who would of sold such,to a black person. So,no black kids,in the school I grew up in.

    Hmmm,this makes me remember the first time,I disagreed with and did something in defiance of,at least some of my adult church leaders. Every year,we had a several day revival meeting and we were expected to go out and invite neighbors/other people to that. So I was driving down the road one year,stopping at people’s homes and doing just that. Got to a home,where several black men were setting out front. Thought not to stop there,as I knew many of my local church leaders,would not want such men,in our little local church. Not even as visitors. Thought not to stop and invite those men to church;but did anyway. Why? Because I knew it was what God would have me do. I knew that God loved them, just as much as God loved me and the people I knew and loved. That was one instance of my following God and not some of my local church leaders,when I was 16 or 17 years old. Of course,those black men,they didn’t come to our yearly revival meeting and I’m sure they didn’t, because they knew how some white people felt about them. So sad,how some people have thought they were better than and would do their best,not to associate with some people. And in part,that was the sort of church,that I grew up in. Not everyone that way;but too many were!

  • OK “dude,” you are satisfied that you are correct, and I am satisfied that my point is valid — that Corey thought he saw an opening to attack an easy target (Ham) for claiming “persecution” even though Ham was using a word as strong as persecution to refer only to someone else — who DID lose his position because he shared his Christian beliefs contrary to what your blinders are allowing you to see (according to Kelvin Cochran it was total spin that he used his position of power inappropriately, since he was sharing his book with people with whom he already had a relationship, as I pointed out in other comments here). Yes, I freely admit that Ham in his blog was also claiming that his own liberties were being restricted and that he was effectively being discriminated against. And yes, he talked about Ark Encounter in the context of what had happened to Cochran. We have no dispute there. But he didn’t say the common thread was “persecution,” as Corey wanted his readers to think (at Ham’s expense). I happen to agree with Ham — and hope Corey would too — that we need to be bold in standing up for biblical truth in a world that is working very hard to silence those who do, even if I wouldn’t necessarily concur with Ham’s specific entrepreneurial or stewardship decisions.

  • Naturally you neglected to quote the critical parts of my comment for understanding how these (representative) false gods of the liberal left compare to Baal, the symbol of fertility worship. “WHERE THE MONEY IS.” Those who worship fertility naturally gravitate to these causes where the Empire’s money is flowing. It is not righteousness the modern Baal-servant seeks, nor good yields in the fields, but monied ideological popularity. Don’t go to an encyclopedia of the Ancient Near East to understand the Present.

  • Funny comment, considering you’re defending someone who is complaining because he’s not getting corporate welfare from the empire. Sounds like Ham is chasing the money to me.

  • Jeff Preuss

    “But he didn’t say the common thread was “persecution,” as Corey wanted his readers to think (at Ham’s expense).”

    Oh, good gravy. Ben posted links to Ham’s own words, so his readers could see exactly the claims that Ham made. No one is trying to silence Biblical truth here – heck, no one is even systematically trying to silence Ham in this case. He didn’t play by the rules, and tried to fall back on calling it discrimination because Jesus.

    And that’s just. not. true.

  • Jeff Preuss

    The critical parts that would explain it? It didn’t make sense, Bruce. You left out some words that would have really hammered that point home, and even when I made the conclusive leap to that being your point (as I showed in my comment) your point didn’t make any goldurn sense.

    Don’t completely out of left-field name-drop Baal if you don’t want Baal in the conversation. Especially don’t call out “pleasing to the fertility god” unless you’re willing to withstand questions about just how these modern-day “offerings” even please said god.

    “Don’t go to an encyclopedia of the Ancient Near East to understand the Present.” Can I go to the Bible to understand how it relates to the present? Is that allowable to you? Granted, I’d prefer to also enhance my study of the texts by being informed of the cultural influences on those ancient texts, such as what came out of the Ancient Near East, since the Bible and Christianity didn’t and don’t exist in a vacuum. But maybe that’s just me.

  • Herm

    Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.” So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

    Genesis 1:26-27

    In the image of God They created humankind, male and female.

  • gimpi1

    Interesting twist on the conspiracy angle, Andy. Perhaps Baal is pro-life, but for the wrong group? The wing-nut who started this thread appears to be a holocaust denier. Hard to assume sanity or knowledge for one of those, but they can add comic-relief to any conspiracy theory.

  • gimpi1

    I very much doubt he can. When people run down a rabbit-hole of a off-the-wall conspiracy ideology such as Holocaust denial, they generally lose touch with basic reality. When the masses of documented evidence on a recent historical event such as the Holocaust won’t convince someone of its reality, it’s hard to imagine what will. At that point, logic has broken down, reality has been left behind, and reason has left the building.

    There are so many “in” references, so many references imaginary groups or incidents and so much contempt for those of outside the little “in the know” group that no one living in the real world can hope to understand what he’s talking about. I just take him as comic-relief.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Holocaust deniers perplex me. I mean, do they think all the concentration death camps were built by Disney in the modern day to sell and tell us a story? Did all the geriatric survivors of the camps voluntarily get prisoner numbers tattooed on their bodies to perpetuate the conspiracy?

  • gimpi1

    I’ve only read a few of them attempt to justify their beliefs. They appear to run the gauntlet from believing the entire Holocaust was propaganda created by Jewish people to garner sympathy to facilitate the creation of the modern state of Israel to those that believe ‘something’ occurred but that it was greatly exaggerated, again for political reasons. They ignore the massive amount of evidence, including video, eye-witnesses, documentation created by the Nazis to chart their “progress,” actual buildings et all. At some point they simply decided to “believe” something, and they now ignore all evidence to the contrary.

    However, Ken Ham is just as ridiculous. The earth is billions of years old. Life evolved from common ancestors. The facts of geology, biology, cosmology and physics are all in agreement. Only desperate willful ignorance can allow one to ignore the mountains of evidence regarding the development of earth and life, or the reality of the Holocaust.

  • Jeff Preuss

    I was recently debating with a woman who declared that no homosexuals were murdered in the Holocaust, and that all of the Holocaust was a homosexual plot for genocide in the service of Satan. When I pointed out that I’d been to a concentration camp, and seen the records of gay people wiped out, she accused ME of denying the Holocaust. Which made no sense, since I had just mentioned visiting a camp.

    Some people will just believe what they want to believe, and cannot rectify those beliefs with reality.

    Of course, that can be said to some extent about all religious belief, couldn’t it? I mean, I know that faith in God may appear to some as superstition writ large, but I still believe in Him. Even if it doesn’t seem rational.

    But, yeah, the cultural impact on the Jewish people (among whom I count many of my friends) of the Holocaust is undeniable, and I simply cannot get the insistence it never happened. If we convince ourselves it never happened, we run the very real risk of letting something like it happen again.

  • gimpi1

    Yes. That’s in part why the Allies documented the camps so completely. Without a record, it would be tempting to ignore or forget the horror. We can’t afford that.

    As to your discussion, I think you’ve shown one of the reasons for holocaust denial. I assume that the lady you were having the discussion with was, shall we say, not sympathetic towards gay people. She’s bought into nonsense that fits her world-view, and refuses to accept any reality that contradicts it. She’s simply not living in the real world any more.

    Conspiracy theories make a good game (I hope) but it’s dangerous to let them take over your world-view.

  • Jeff Preuss

    You know, there simply could be vast Illuminati-esque conspiracies to control and shape the world for all I know. However, living like that’s true, and that others completely control my fate steers too far into Calvinist territory for me, and perpetuates this idea that there’s nothing I can do to influence the world and people around me. And I cannot live like that. It’s almost like giving up, in a sense.

    Truth is, there are many people more “in power” in this world than I, and that’s fine. It’s reality, but I don’t let their power dictate my worth. (I think conspiracy theorists might be dealing with a bit of self-esteem struggle magnified into a bit of a mania.)

  • gimpi1

    From the conspiracy-oriented folks I’ve spoken to, you may be right. There’s also a tendency to obsess over minutia, a need for absolute answers and a desire for “hidden” knowledge not shared by the rest of us.

    Are there conspiracies? Sure. Do wealthy and powerful people have undue influence over our lives? Most likely. Is there an overreaching “new world order” secretly running the world? Probably not.

  • 1) Erroneously invoke a deity from the Ancient Near East
    2) Complain about people talking about the Ancient Near East
    3) ????
    4) PROFIT!

  • RonnyTX

    I think you’re right about a lot here. For when a person is brainwashed into a group,their own personal thinking,is all messed up. And I well know that,from firsthand experience. And some go down even further than others and remind me of the Borg,from the old Star Trek,The Next Generation,TV show. Group think and all that. Which is not real thinking at all.

    And when I think of the Holocaust,it wouldn’t surprise me,to find out I had family on two or three sides of that! I know some of my kinfolk came from Germany and were Jewish. Well,I can go deeper and simply say,that I know I had family, on all sides of that. For every person who ever was,is a part of my family. :-) And I believe that’s one big reason,I so hate to see some doing stupid,hurtful things to others.

  • RonnyTX

    That is a sad case,for someone like Raif. :-( The picture of him and his kids,that I saw,it so much reminded me of one of my nephews and his 3 little ones. And some people are so stupid and hardhearted,just because someone like Raif, speaks their mind! But sadly,it doesn’t surprise me at all, that some people are just that cruel and hardhearted. And yes,people who are Christian,should speak up in defence of people like Raif. So,he and I don’t see everything alike. Doesn’t matter,for he is still my fellow human being and my brother.

  • Chris Larosa

    I would be myopic to not admit there’s a difficult balance to what we place our time and $$ into and that there are seemingly imprudent choices that can bear good fruit later. I get it. But this fake boat? And then discriminating against contractors that don’t believe the WW Flood story literally? Don’t you think THAT alone (by disallowing the ‘heathen’ to participate in this ‘evangelical’ project) is wildly ironic when, per Ken, the whole purpose of the project is FOR evangelism? Evangelizing who? Baptists? This is lunacy, completely inconsistent with his supposed intentions, and yet another clear reason why he’s lost it.

  • Chris Larosa

    Wow. That’s a mouthful. I came out when I was 47, so my journey was tough. And to be told I’m not a Christian or never was is simply maddening. Experience with Calvinism and Reformed theology was very similar to yours – God HATES sinners…God is American and Republican…all Democrats are going to Hell…blah blah blah. How awful. I was this way for 30 years. And hard to see all of my ex-friends still in that dark/deceived place. When I came out, I had no idea how I would also come out of the dark bubble of fundamentalism – truly now a gift from God! The Truth has set me free indeed,

  • Oh dear

  • gimpi1

    There’s a reason for the “never forget” statement. When we forget, when we deny, we open the door to future atrocities.

    It has been pointed out that many of the folks who “deny” the existence of the Holocaust are actually not Holocaust deniers, they are Holocaust admirers. They are often rabidly anti-semitic. They would have no interest in the Nazis if it weren’t for the savagery of the Holocaust. I think the denial is a front, because they know how profoundly appalled people would be if they voiced the admiration.

    It’s like the code-words (welfare-cheats, sluts, diseased, thugs, lazy, druggies) that hate-mongers use when talking about the group they despise. They know if they came out and said, “I hate (fill in the slur)!” they would be shunned socially. Code-words and code-beliefs can mask hatred. That’s why it’s so important to pay attention to what people mean.

  • Jeff Preuss

    I think the code word that gets tossed around too easily in this case is “Zionist.” I almost never hear or read that term unless it’s used by someone rabidly anti-Semitic.

  • gimpi1

    You may be right.

  • Which is a shame, because in some ways that trivializes a very real and very important facet of global politics; not going to try to play the “they started it” game, but it’s true that Israel is a major focal point for a fair amount of ongoing strife, and I think that Zionism (both within Judaism and within Christianity) exacerbates things.

    …hmm, maybe that’s one way to tell if it’s a code word. If they talk about “Zionists” but never touch on Christian Zionism, they might be anti-Semitic. I feel like Christian Zionists are mildly anti-Semitic anyways, since the whole thrust of that movement appears to be “we need the Jews in Israel in order to end the world so that good Christians will go to heaven and all non-Christians will burn in Hell.”

  • If you find that page, I’d love to see it. I studied Hebrew in seminary, but I still consider myself too much of an amateur to speak with much authority most of the time.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Eep. Scary.

  • Yeah, I wish I’d never encountered that side of Evangelical Christianity.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Sadly, there are many sides of evangelical Christianity that I wish (on one hand) that I’d never encountered.

    On the other hand, had I not grown up in that environment, I might not fully understand some of the dangers I see within its fold. I might not quite get the pervasive superiority (inferiority) complex that leads to such a country club tendency to exclude those who don’t rate.

    Sometimes it is truly difficult to see the light without the darkness to provide contrast.

  • Terry Firma
  • Jeff Preuss

    Oh, fer the luvva…
    Now Ham and his group are setting to sue Kentucky for this “discrimination.”

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2015/02/03/noahs-ark-park-officials-plan-to-sue-kentucky/22816615/

  • Gary Neal

    Spot on, well done Ben.