Why Standing Against Islamic Violence Forces You To Rethink Biblical Inerrancy

Why Standing Against Islamic Violence Forces You To Rethink Biblical Inerrancy September 23, 2015

bible_violence

I’ve written a fair amount about contemporary issues regarding our relationship with Muslims. As a people group I love dearly and long to minister to for years to come, I have been quick to stand against xenophobia and Islamophobia. In our current climate in American Christianity however, there is fast and hard push-back when I stand with my Muslim brothers and sisters.

Standing with them, of course, does not mean I stand with everything done in the name of their religion– there is certainly no shortage of violence being done in the name of Islam throughout the world (as is the case with other religions, including my own). My fellow Christians are quick to denounce this violence– which I applaud as someone who is against all forms of violence.

However, I have been realizing over the course of time that American Christianity’s outrage over some of the violence that occurs under the umbrella of Islam, causes such a person to end up in a most peculiar position.

Let me explain.

When some Muslim extremists burn people alive, stone people to death, wage jihad to destroy their enemies and take girls as sex slaves, we rightly recoil morally and say that all of those things are disgustingly wrong. Many Christians then say, “any religion that condones this is evil” because they rightly judge those behaviors to be evil. However, this moral judgement– one that is absolutely correct in identifying these behaviors as evil– creates a serious problem for the Christian (or Jew) in that all of those behaviors are commanded and affirmed in the Bible.

 When you read through the Hebrew Scriptures, it seems that not only did our spiritual ancestors practice these same things, but if one holds to a traditional position of inerrancy as I was taught as an Evangelical, they would also have to admit that God actually commanded and approved of it.

Stoning people to death? That’s what God supposedly picked for a punishment for a guy caught getting firewood on a Saturday when he was supposed to be resting. Stoning was how they rolled back then.

Burning people alive? The Bible commands it for daughters of priests who become prostitutes.

Death penalty for sexual indiscretions? Yup. You were even commanded to stone anyone to death who charged interest on a loan.

Command jihad? Absolutely. In fact, other than the Lex Talionis, the two main types of violence embraced in the OT were punishments for violating sharia law, and jihad. And, the OT takes jihad to a new level: it actually says that God commanded they kill all the babies and even the animals.

Sex slaves? Yup. The Bible says that after they conquer a city they can take the women, force them to come home and live as their wives. Straight up an endorsement of sex trafficking.

So, all those things that we find morally outrageous when Muslim extremist do them? Yeah, they are all things that God supposedly commanded in the Bible.

And here’s where rejecting the violence in Islam puts an American Evangelical and others in a very awkward position: it forces you into one of two positions. The first option is the way of hypocrisy, where one could argue that jihad, violent sharia, and sex slavery are evil when done in the name of Allah, but good when done in the name of Yahweh. The second option is that it forces one to re-think and ultimately reject the standard evangelical teaching on inerrancy of scripture. I went with what was behind door #2.

For me, this position isn’t so troublesome. When I see radical Muslims burn someone alive or wage jihad, I have no moral qualms about denouncing it. When I read of these same exact things in Scripture, I likewise have no moral qualms denouncing it. I have allowed these morally repugnant acts to force me to rethink traditional explanations of inerrancy, because I am unwilling to say anything other than “these acts are wrong in all times, and in all places, no matter who is doing them.” Whatever inerrancy means, it certainly must mean something different than the version we grew up with. (Today I prefer the word “inspired”.)

But for a typical American Evangelical, or any other of flavor of Christian who is quick to denounce Islam’s violence but quick to argue that every word in Scripture is without error? That’s a conundrum. 

Just as I said that ISIS forces us to rethink hell, I also say that the violence we see occurring in Islam should force us to rethink biblical inerrancy. 


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  • Lisa Schmidt

    Thanks for this! I’ve been wrestling with inerrancy for a little while now (particularly with the idea that anything God-inspired after the canonization is somehow less than what happened before). This provides another perspective on the issue. Since I am a researcher at heart, I would love to know if you have found any good books on the topic.

  • Ho boy. I’ll go warm up the car.

  • Herm

    Thank you Ben. You know what I just wrote in regards to inerrant commenting to someone who might remain anonymous [gimpi1] who I hugely treasure her heart and mind. I concur wholeheartedly with the Spirit found in this article. Love you!!!

  • Herm

    … sorry, no escaping this but thanks for the gesture!

  • Bill

    I’m not sure I follow your total logic here. A Christian is one who accepts Jesus as recorded in the new testament understands that lots of behavior changed due to Jesus arrival and the new covenant. For example the ” love your enemy” and ” judge not ” commands by Jesus are pretty clear. Also an example of the women caught in adultery was released and pardoned by Jesus. It’s one thing to question a Muslim or Jew regarding the old testament activities, quite another to discuss it with Christians who accept jesus and the new covenant. It’s kind of like looking at the constitution and ignoring the amendments and then applying it to modern day USA citizens.

  • Falken

    There are several – branches, churches, even individuals – within Christianity who utilize both testaments. Some focus on biblical inerrancy and hold to the idea the entire Bible is to be followed. There’s even the fact a lot of their viewpoints not only differ from Jesus but pull support from the parts of the New Testament focused on someone else – essentially becoming Paulians instead of Christians – or the Old Testament. Like you said, it’s like looking at the Constitution and ignoring the amendments but worse, as the few amendments they look at are incomplete or skewed.

  • Tracy

    I would agree . To what degree I agree is still a work in progress, but I agree that the God of the OT does not paint a beautiful picture of a loving God who died on a cross for us. I tend to think that there is a lot of culture and pagan beliefs mixed in with scripture that wasn’t God’s doing or commanding, and that he worked WITHIN the culture, and despite their pagan beliefs. It was a slow process, and they did not have the benefit of knowledge of Jesus that we possess. So yes, agree with you.

  • Robert Wallis

    There is, of course, a third option: which is that an intelligent hermeneutic exists that explains as much as can reasonably be explained, that explains how one can accept the Bible as a cohesive whole. Such an explanation, for example, is alluded to by Keller in the following piece:
    http://www.churchleaders.com/pastors/pastor-articles/167685-tim-keller-why-same-sex-acts-got-the-death-penalty-in-ot-but-not-today.html
    It’s not going to satisfy everyone, and probably won’t satisfy you, I’m guessing. But you do have the habit (I’m assuming for literary and dramatic impact) to at times posit options as the only ones possible, inferring the ridiculousness of the theology of those who disagree with you. For the record, I don’t really have a big problem with this, since there are plenty of people from all over the Christian spectrum who say annoying or inflammatory things for the sake of making a point. Kind of like Jesus did.
    You say a lot I agree with. I’m glad you have a voice and a platform. But there are probably about as many nuances to so-called reformed theology as there are those of us who identify with much of it. We do not all walk lock-step out here!
    Peace and grace to you!

  • Mary Hanner

    Perhaps I come from a different tradition. The word inerrancy means, to me, that what is written in the Bible is correctly written given what was know and believed at that time. It always made sense to me. Later, when I took a lot of literature classes and found that poetry is able to express the deepest truth without being literal the Bible made even more sense to me. Long arguments about whether literal details of the Bible seem pointless to me. Of course it is not morally right to kill innocents or abuse them. When the Old Testament says it was done then the inerrancy is that it was actually done. Not that it was right, but that it occurred. Error is not an infallible concept. The inspiration of Scripture is see a constant truth in the overall meaning, not in a single verse, or even a single book of the Bible. But in the whole. The soul speaks in ideas that confound reason, at times. It is no different than the work of poets. And some modern day poets. Who does not understand the phrase “I AM TRAVON MARTIN”? It is truth. It isn’t literal.

  • Very good points!

    I especially agree with this statement by you, “these acts are wrong in all times, and in all places, no matter who is doing them.”

    As for inerrancy, I’ve not believed that doctrine for many years, so I realize your post really isn’t really aimed for me. But since, I so disagreed with your last post, I wanted to show agreement this time.

    And I used to be an Anabaptist:-)

  • Sherlang

    Issues like this are why I cannot fully join the Progressive Christian camp. The fact of the inerrancy of Scripture is very important to me. I believe that the Bible is God-breathed and thus is truth. But I love Ben’s passion for social justice. We may not agree on this issue, but we agree on a lot so I will remain an avid reader! Even if I don’t always agree with you, thank you for always making me take a deep look at what I believe.

  • Robert Mauro

    “lots of behavior changed due to Jesus arrival and the new covenant.”

    Yet, 1,200 years of war, and almost 2,000 years of other crimes say otherwise.

    People in this country (and the UK and some other parts of Europe) don’t really see the whole face of Christianity, or don’t remember (or realize) that there are HUNDREDS of sects with sometimes vastly different beliefs.

    Some believe the parts where Jesus says he did NOT come to invalidate or eradicate or fulfill the old laws. And thus, the Anglican Archbishop and Roman Catholic Archbishop in Uganda supported the gay death penalty (until the public outcry against it got too loud). There’s a sect of Christians who run a “help” organization that helps companies exterminate indigenous people in Africa to give the lands to the corporations. There are sects in Africa who wage war against non-Christians as much as sects of Islam do there.

    The point is, the logic is easy to follow when one realizes that both holy books do command such, and that sects of both religions do take that seriously.

    It’s not right, in either case. But it happens. And it’s real.

    It’s religious radicals we must fight against – without worrying about what religion they are from.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Amen. This guy is supposedly getting a Doctorate from Fuller. I hope they hold off tell he gains some maturity. Seeing the professors coming out of these institutions. I doubt that will happen. He will happily go along with his CNN, love the pop culture theology, until sharia law puts all the Fundies in concentration camps. Then he can call it a success. Just try to write like our “ridiculous” blogger. old hipster with the tats Ben.

  • Robert Mauro

    “I believe that the Bible is God-breathed and thus is truth.”

    I don’t mean this in a disparaging way, but I have absolutely never met anyone who’s actually read the Bible who’s actually claimed that. Only people who’ve read snippets that were hand selected by their church.

    If it’s true, where are unicorns? Why are women chattel? Why are we commanded to kill unbelievers? Why can’t Jesus make up his mind on whether we need to obey all the old laws (“since not one iota, not one dot shall ever pass away”) or live by his new dictates and The Ten?

    I could list contradictions for many many hours… how do you explain them?

  • Herm

    Is it so important to hang on every word in the Bible as God-breathed at the cost of accepting the word of God, the only Spirit of Truth into your heart and mind. There is only one Teacher according to Jesus quoted in the scripture and it isn’t the Bible. We cannot serve two masters of growth for our hearts and minds. The only authorities who direct you to the inerrancy of the Bible are those supporting their authority of which Jesus does not need the Bible to support His authority over heaven and earth, the Spirit of Truth He does but not the Bible. Faith in God does not mean some nebulous possibility that God might exist anymore than faith in your parents might have been. It means a knowing relationship of trust that our creator God who you know loves you and will provide for you, and yours, where you cannot.

    I do love your discipline of allegiance but disagree with who and what will actually be able to provide for your needs eternally.

  • gjewett

    Thanks Mary Hanner, for a good, sane comment. you come from a solid
    Biblical tradition, not the one Ben is always ranting about.

  • Mike Denison

    Well put. I’m no theologian, but something about Corey’s piece threw me off as a believer in inerrancy. Thanks for, at the very least, adding weight to the counter-argument!

  • Herm

    Googled:

    in·er·rant
    inˈerənt/
    adjective
    incapable of being wrong.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Ben only believes in social justice for the cause de rigueur. He totally disagrees with justice for the unborn. Nor does he care for the poor women who are destroyed by our culture of death. He also cares nothing for our Men and Women in Blue. Oh and all the people that lost their jobs to the H1B visa people, so corporations can gain bigger profits. I could go on and on. If one believes in justice. It has to be consistent. Not just the hipster, trends of the day.

  • Sherlang

    Ok I don’t always agree with Ben, but he doesn’t “rant”. Just because he doesn’t agree with you doesn’t make him a raving lunatic. We need to be able to discuss different views without resorting to name calling

  • Herm

    Where is it in Ben’s article that the test and the program could both be wrong or either be wrong in his conclusions? There are always yet to be discovered alternatives.

  • Herm

    Spoken as one who does not know Ben, nor the Spirit who speaks through him.

  • Sherlang

    I do find it disappointing that Ben does not come out as more anti-abortion, but i don’t remember him ever calling himself pro-choice. I could be wrong though

  • Sherlang

    I fully admit I do not know the complete answers to all those questions. And I totally agree that most Christians merely pick and choose what verses they want to use, creating their own sunshine and rainbow version of Christianity and God. Our church right now is reading through the entire Bible and I look forward to it. Too often I read merely the NT because it is something I more fully understand. On my old Bible, the NT pages were easily opened. The OT pages were stuck together because they were not often used. I just bought a new Bible, in which I hope i read it all and not just pick out the things I want to hear. I am a ministry student and will soon go to seminary, and look forward to obtaining more knowledge. This is an article I read recently that I enjoyed

    http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2013/july-august/can-we-trust-god-of-genocide.html?start=4

  • Herm

    Consider yourself wrong.

  • Well that escalated quickly. While I may not agree with it, Robert’s comment was kind and well-reasoned.
    Your comment calls out Ben for a lack of maturity; then immediately insults him, as well as his seminary and the faculty thereof- before somehow using sharia law to inspire fear in the very same thought in which you moralize tattoos.

  • Sherlang

    Can you point me to an article where he states this?

  • Herm
  • Sherlang

    Ok that was what I meant. Ben is pro-life, not pro-choice. He is just a lot more active in being pro-life for the full life, not just the unborn

  • Herm

    Beware the journey to truth is eternal. You, as a ministry student, will go through many tests of sincerity beyond seminary as your awareness of the only Teacher develops into a relationship in the Spirit of Truth in both your hearts and minds. I testify to you it is worth it. I love and respect your dedication though I know from your fruit that you have yet to serve only one school master.

  • Robert Mauro

    That is awesome! Best wishes on your (hopefully never ending) quest for knowledge and understanding.

  • Herm

    As the Spirit of God, that mankind is in the image of, is freewill and thereby the responsibility to consequences of choice I am by love pro-quality of life for all forever more. I cannot legislate the choice of another to absolve them of the responsibility to life that is purely theirs and not mine to legislate. Your religious church’s definition of pro-life would imprison our Creator for many of Their choices related to in the Bible. Our Father’s sending His only begotten Son to the cross is an end to a beginning for us but is a parental choice we must not ever legislate against.

  • I really appreciate that you mention the sex trafficking. I’ve heard a lot of excuses about how at least the Israelites were marrying the women, so it wasn’t so bad – they were doing better than other cultures who would just rape the women and not marry them.
    The women are still dehumanized and violated and trafficked, marriage or not.

  • That isn’t kind or true…

  • Robert Mauro

    Exactly which part is false?

    And I think you mean “false equivalency”. That aside, there’s more to Christianity than this little country of so few Christians. There are 2.2 BILLION Christians worldwide, MANY drastically different than the measly 200 million in the United States.

    Too many still follow the more violent paths of the Bible. And for a period of 1,200 years, a few centuries before now, virtually all of Christianity did.

    And both books say the same violent things – as a matter of fact, the Old Testament is what inspired the Quran. Abrahamic religions and all, all three (Judaism, Islam, Christianity).

  • For what it’s worth, I really liked Peter Enns’ “The Bible Tells Me So.” :)

  • Sherlang

    Thanks so much for being so gracious.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    So lets not legislate against murder? How is one death different than the other?

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Because its OK with the culture to be Ben’s way. The culture wouldn’t accept Ben if he wrote for the unborn.

  • Herm

    Lisa, I might suggest what I found as an easy but enlightening read, “The End of Religion” by Bruxy Cavey.

    I have also found a definite peace and joy trusting the growing Spirit within my heart and mind to lead as I search and adventure closer to the Truth every day.

    We can’t lose from honest step by step research when tempered with discernment supported by a credible counselor.

  • Herm

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/formerlyfundie/what-i-value-the-sanctity-of-all-human-life-usually-doesnt-mean-but-should/

    You pit your kind against “the culture”s kind. You have become nonsensical in your competition to be right and totally anti-Matthew 7:12.

  • Herm

    It depends entirely on who YOU give responsibility for the choice. By legislating you are not allowing necessary resources and the responsibility of utilization to God, or the parents, who know better than you the situation and the possible consequences. You then have usurped the authority of God and the parents. How many have died that you say it was God’s choice that they live or die? There by the grace of God go I.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Herm, I spent so many years of my life trying to be accepted. I was a coward. I knew it was wrong. Just couldn’t find a way. Until I found out Jesus was not accepted. (Is 53). He had very few followers. In fact Christianity was very unpopular for 100s of years. It has never in its history been popular with the culture. Oh wait, except when the Romans took it over. And perverted it.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    So when can a parent kill its child? Is it ok at the day before its born? When its born? The day after its born? 1 year after its born? Any time during its life?

  • Herm

    On that we can agree. To not in everything do to others as our kind would have others do to us I cannot agree for that alone sums up all the Law and the Prophets according to Jesus.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    I don’t care about tats. Just pointing out. This guy is so wanting to be accepted by the pop culture. From his hipster style, including the tats, to his writings. If he can point out, what he thinks is absurd, by being ridiculous. Why can’t I?

  • Well it seems to me that your best course of action if you disagree with him would be to refute his points, not insult him.

    For example I take issue with your assertion that Mr. Corey (and others you disagree with) writes things like this to be “accepted by pop culture” but instead of attacking your character I’m going to explain why I think your assumption is incorrect.

    Now I certainly can’t speak for Mr. Corey, so I’ll speak only for myself. I’ll readily admit that I am a people-pleaser by nature, but that is very much a part of me I must squelch when I open my mouth to challenge the status quo.

    I’ve been accused of ‘caving to culture’ for years now, but it’s my culture I am speaking against.

    Trust me- as a straight, married, middle-class, Christian man- there would be nothing easier than shutting my big mouth and fitting in. (And to be honest, that’s what I usually do.)

    If Jesus weren’t working within me, I wouldn’t be a feminist.
    If Jesus weren’t working within me, I wouldn’t be a pacifist.
    If Jesus weren’t working within me, I wouldn’t give a rip about my LGBT, muslim, or immigrant neighbors.

    I’m okay with people serving Jesus differently than me, or disagreeing with my opinions; but even if they are right about the results I achieve, they couldn’t be more wrong about my motivations.

    I think if you or I talked to Mr. Corey we would find much of the same is true for him, judging by how he is writing for Christian publications instead of starring in his own “Theology for totally rad tattooed guys” show on MTV.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Please point me to articles he has written. Where his focus is on the justice for those sides. Not just as a spring board to his “social justice.” Saying I am pro life, but these other things are more important. Is not true social justice. Saying I love cops but…. Or I know this is injustice but… Is his M.O.

  • Others have already shared said post in this comment thread. Right below. :)

  • Je’ Czaja

    I became a Christian and read through the Bible a few times before I was told about “inerrancy”-the Bible is historically and scientifically “true” and God sort of dictated it while the writer transcribed every jot and tittle. As a student of ancient literature, I thought the Bible was fascinating but that the definition was not only wrong-it mangled the message. Writers have a message, they express it in terms of their culture or the readers wouldn’t get it. Science and history as truth filters are recent inventions. Why use them? Look for the message. I mean is a poem about daffodils true? or only a botanical definition? I say the poem is more true, and I taught horticulture.

  • I spent the better part of my year wrestling with the slavery/sex trafficking issue in my doctoral work. I tried hard to explain it away, but in the end, I don’t see any other legitimate way to interpret the passages.

  • I technically do believe in inerrancy, and I wouldn’t broad brush anyone with the progressive label. I reject the evangelical concept of inerrancy which forces the OT to be interpreted through a western, book culture, history-oriented filter. We insist that post-exilic Hebrew documents record history the way we would intend a book to do so in today’s era, when there’s simply no way you can force the Hebrew scriptures into such a modern filter. Like the Facebook commercial, “that’s not how this works. That’s not how any of it works.” The term inerrant smacks of a western mindset, and naturally forces a western framework onto ancient documents.

    Jesus claimed that all scripture was designed to point to him. I believe that all scripture is “inspired and useful for teaching” as Paul wrote, and that it’s purpose of inspiration was to pointing to Jesus. Sometimes this is by foreshadowing, sometimes it’s by recording the old ways so they could contrast with what Jesus would teach.

    Holding to a solidly biblical affirmation of inspiration does not require us to force ancient texts to behave like modern ones.

  • LOL. I’m guessing you disagree with the Apostle Paul when he said that all slanderers will go to hell?

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Not true. Fundies are bad for trying to legislate against this murder. He once again finds a way to fit into the pop culture. Even on abortion. The pop culture says, ” hey, be pro life all you want. Its a nice thought. Just don’t try to legislate it.” But legislate the requirement to be pro homosexual marriage, and thats OK???

  • I’ve always been pro-life. Never anything else. I advocate for all life. My contention has simply been that legally abolishing something doesn’t make it go away, and thus it is a misguided focus. Also, as an Anabaptist I am also pretty open about the fact that many of us historically and in current times, don’t believe Jesus followers have the right to take control of government– so our focus is often to address issues in other ways.

    I advocate for the things that can actually reduce abortions– passing a law doesn’t actually stop it and I think such a focus for the pro-life movement would yield only a faux accomplishment that would create as many problems as it aimed to solve.

  • Thank you.

  • Robert Mauro

    Sure, I too can come up with a myriad of reasons. But how rational is it to do so, when (in this country) most sects of Christianity, and most followers *do* fit in those two categories?

    If it’s 90 degrees out and someone predicts rain and warm tomorrow, while someone else predicts sunny and warm, and others predict varying clouds and warm, then we evaluate and discuss those.

    Sure, you can (as you’re hinting – but oddly not delivering) say that it is possible it will be 25 degrees and snowing tomorrow. Yes, it’s possible. But it’s also not an option worthy of *the same* consideration – and no meteorologist will deliver such a prediction, even though they know there’s always that possibility.

    Following religious trends, numerous surveys, various statements by various sects, tons of commentary on social media sites, etc: points to largely two scenarios as outlined in Ben’s article. Sure there are always the fringe paths/options. There are 2.2 billion Christians. But the vast majority who are being discussed fit those two categories.

    False equivalency, false dichotomy… either way, you’ve got little ground to stand on.

    Because *you* want to redefine what people think doesn’t change what they think. And as the generalizations that they are, Ben has covered the two major points of view.

    Duh, of course they are more. And it might snow in Florida tomorrow. Major viewpoints.

    No one expects the two of them to cover ALL people and ALL possibilities.

  • We’ll always welcome you back if one day you decide to repent ;-)

  • There’s definitely 3rd, 4th and 5th options (to be honest, I don’t think I gave an option in the piece– I just tried to prick curiosity for those who grew up like me to begin rethinking the western concept of inerrancy.) I’ll write some followup pieces to go through some of the options.

  • I don’t necessarily disbelieve. I just said “whatever it means, it certainly must mean something different than the version we grew up with” and that was really all I was attempting to get out in this piece.

  • So funny you mention CNN– I am actually taking a distance learning Biblical Hermeneutics class with them. I’m learning some really good stuff.

  • Sherlang

    That’s a very interesting way to look at things. Do you know where I could get more information on this view?

  • Well, in general I certainly draw heavily from Greg Boyd’s theology, and he has a variety of sermons and blogs on the issue, so I would check him out at Reknew (his blog) and Woodland Hills (his church). As for a book, an absolute must-read is For The Bible Tells Me So by Pete Enns.

  • Sherlang

    I absolutely love this view! I have never really thought of it this way. I guess I’ve been misguided and thought that outlawing abortion would solve the problem. But it really wouldn’t. How do we go about changing hearts and minds? Just reflect Jesus in the best way we can and truly follow him?

  • The same issue happened with slavery- it continued in various forms long after it was illegal. In order to end something, you have to address why it is happening. All a law does is says “don’t do this”, but doesn’t actually do anything to stop it. For example, people say this about guns all the time (and then ironically, use opposite logic on abortion.)

    How do we change it? I think a lot of it has to do with addressing issues of poverty, access to higher education and real life choices for people, access to birth control, etc. I also think generally cultivating a culture that values all life is necessary as well– seeking to refrain from war, violence, and doing things that develop empathy and compassion.

    The best thing you can do as one person though, is be an example to others.

  • One of the most recent big issues I’ve been dealing with in regards to my faith is the OT actions versus the NT. How do we reconcile the loving father in the NT with His dark and vengeful actions in the OT? Why are the killings, the rapes, and the harsh punishments awful now, but okay then?

    On another note:Most Islamphobic Christians I’ve heard seem to be applying double standards. For example, Muslims are violent based on the actions of extremists, but radical Christian don’t represent the whole. Or that Muslims will kill you for disagreeing with them, but write off violent or homicidal Christians as being “not true Christians” and not our problem.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Wow. You just called me a liar. Implying that I am going to hell. Must have hit a nerve. Please show me an article where you totally and completely argue for the life of the unborn. Not one where you pander to the pop culture. They are fine with people being pro life, just don’t legislate it. Yet if you believe its really the murder of an innocent. You would fight for their lives. Ben really show me somewhere that you truly argue against the pop culture. They all make a nod to Christ. I have been involved in this issue for 47 years. Yes, before Roe v wade. I know a person trying to stay on both sides of the issue when I read one. It is very telling that the majority of your supporters on this site are very pro pop culture. Also that there are so many atheists that agree with you.

  • Tim Holt

    I’m pretty sure Greg Boyd has an upcoming book that wrestles with all this. His conclusion (I’m paraphrasing) is that the OT is a sort of literary crucifixion. That basically in ascribing to God these horrible actions they are casting their sin onto him.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    So do you volunteer at a pro life organization. Like a Pregnancy Resource Center. Maybe help write their newsletter. Paint their walls. Sort baby cloths. Anything?

  • seashell

    I know you love your ‘pop culture’ meme, but if you’ve been wrestling with the abortion issue for 47 years, it’s probably not ‘pop’ anymore. And if it’s a cultural issue – it’s a global one.

    I hear a lot that abortion should be between a woman and God. Have you ever considered that you’re not God and he doesn’t need your help?

  • Chris Brink

    Benjamin: Doesn’t it make sense to realize that what happened thousands of years ago shouldn’t happen today? Can’t we give mankind any credit for an evolving sense of decency? What is so appalling about ISIS isn’t the fact that that type of violence has never been seen before, but that most of us believe mankind has moved beyond that level of violence. I am not disputing that any of those instances in the Bible occurred, but I would hope that we have moved beyond that level of violence. Nazi Germany may have been our ultimate low point – or at least we can hope that it is the low of mankind.

  • I’ve done better than sort baby clothes. I decided to forgo having biological kids (a life long dream) and instead spent my life savings on adopting and caring for older children with special needs who society had thrown away. I’m the one who fought for them. I’m the one who takes them to therapy. I’m the one who fights the school to make sure they get an appropriate education despite the severe educational barriers. I’m the one who meets with IEP teams, meets with therapeutic teams, who works with the equine therapist, and the liaison for everything else.

    My entire life is wrapped up in fighting for kids who no one else wanted and were passed over and passed over.

    So, don’t come in here think you’re going to try to measure me up to see if I actually care about those beating hearts who aren’t wanted– because I’ve sacrificed more on the altar of pro-life than most of the people you know.

    Have fun folding baby clothes. I need to go figure out how to get this app from the institute of the blind and dyslexic to work so I can help my daughter read.

  • Yes– this is is magnum opus and I’ve certainly been anxious for it.

  • seashell

    Well, here’s the thing: Everyone knows meteorologists are liberal godless atheists trying to push their opinion agenda. Kevin has an opinion on this and it is just as correct as those weather guys with opinions because he has every right to have his own opinion. And if he thinks it’s going to snow in Florida tomorrow, that opinion is an equally valid opinion as the lefty meteorologist’s. /sarcasm

    If this cleared things up for you Robert, I consider it productive. :-)

  • Margot Fernandez

    I hope readers are not under the false impression that Biblical inerrancy is universally believed by ALL Christians. It would really be nice if we could get serious theologians to write about these things, but in reality they think our discourse in articles like this is puerile and ignorant. And it is.
    If you want any more evidence of this, check out Lutherans, United Methodists, Episcopalians, Presbyterians, etc., and LEARN WHAT MAINSTREAM CHRISTIANS BELIEVE. Hopefully BEFORE you go off in articles like this.
    Furthermore, there is no such thing as Old Testament Christianity. Check the author’s reference to the Hebrew Scriptures and evangelical un-Christianity.

  • Margot Fernandez

    The simple answer to your question in the first paragraph is that many of the men who wrote books that are now in the Hebrew Scriptures were mistaken about God.

  • Margot Fernandez

    God: inerrant by nature. Human beings: errant all over the map. Even when they write about God THEY can be wrong.

  • Margot Fernandez

    There is no such thing as Old Testament Christianity.

  • Margot Fernandez

    In some denominations, such as the Episcopal Church, you are free to exercise your powers of observation, analysis and judgment and adjust your perception of the Faith accordingly. You don’t always have to check your brain at the church door.

  • Margot Fernandez

    If you want a tough-minded and realistic assessment of the present state of the Church, you might check out the works of Bishop John Shelby Spong. He is not only a renowned theologian but also one of the foremost Bible scholars alive today.

  • Margot Fernandez

    Have you ever considered that a woman doesn’t need YOUR help to make a profound and appalling decision?

  • Margot Fernandez

    It is easy, painless and completely safe to be pro-life if you are a man.

  • Margot Fernandez

    You don’t watch Fox News, do you?

  • Dessany

    Unless it’s your wife, daughter, mother, sister, or aunt who is impacted by so-called “pro-life” laws.

  • Margot Fernandez

    Are you addressing this question to pro-choice people as though it describes them? You should be ashamed of such lazy, sleazy intellectual tactics. But then, you probably heard it on church.

  • Dessany

    The fact that you think of writing a newsletter, painting walls, or sorting baby cloths as a pregnancy resource shows how little you know of the needs of pregnant women.

    Try walking into a real pregnancy resource like Planned Parenthood and volunteer there. You might find find out what their real needs are and some compassion for women.

  • Margot Fernandez

    Don’t make me out to be stupid; I don’t appreciate it. My reply was specific to Herm.

  • Dessany

    There is no legislation requiring you to be pro-homosexual marriage. There is only legislation and court orders saying people who want to marry their same sex partner can.

    You can speak out against this as much as you want. What you can’t do is force your religious beliefs on other people who don’t hold those beliefs.

  • Margot Fernandez

    …but you voted for the pro-lifers anyway? Sorry, but when you see what is being done against women and the candidates keep on winning primary elections and the religious fanatics come out and vote them into office, it seems that men don’t really care about women in this issue, but only about their ideals. Every single woman who has unprotected sex is laying down her life and every single man ought to know that. I was given up for dead in a delivery room and I know what I’m talking about. if you do care about women’s health issues, I hope you are involved in the struggle to preserve them.
    Remember the doctor who called his medical education “lies straight from the pit of Hell?” This passes for politics on one side of the aisle.

  • Herm

    sorry, I’m still not clear. A false dichotomy is one or both wrong.

  • I appreciate the overall sentiment, but Ben is a Christian and his article comes down on a non-inerrantist position. He is literally a Christian who does not believe in inerrancy.

  • Dessany

    I’m fiercely pro-choice. I’m just pointing out men are also affected by so called “pro-life” laws. When Savita Halappanavar died in 2012, her husband was devastated by her unnecessary death. Men are not separate from the ravages of forced birth thinking.

  • Dessany

    Abortion is a medical issue. As long as women can die and suffer from pregnancy we will need abortion. One of the big lies is that there is never a need for abortion. Just look at the women who have died from pregnancy to see the lie in that.

    RESULTS: Between 1980 and 2007, 876 deaths were attributed to ectopic pregnancy. The ectopic pregnancy mortality ratio declined by 56.6%, from 1.15 to 0.50 deaths per 100,000 live births between 1980-1984 and 2003-2007; at the current average annual rate of decline, this ratio will further decrease by 28.5% to 0.36 ectopic pregnancy deaths per 100,000 live births by 2013-2017. The ectopic pregnancy mortality ratio was 6.8 times higher for African Americans than whites and 3.5 times higher for women older than 35 years than those younger than 25 years during 2003-2007. Of the 76 deaths among women hospitalized between 1998 and 2007, 70.5% were tubal pregnancies; salpingectomy was performed in 80.6% of cases. Excessive hemorrhage, shock, or renal failure accompanied 67.4% of ectopic pregnancy deaths among hospitalized women.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21422853

    That’s just one issue in pregnancy that causes death.

  • caming

    Maybe. But a few thousand years from now, they’ll be saying the same thing about us.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I don’t think the word “Christian” means what you think it means. Anyone who has ever been baptized is a Christian. I am an Episcopalian Christian. The evangelicals got away with hijacking the word for a couple of generations, but their arrogance blew it and now they are quite un-Christian themselves. I am joining in the discussion to make the point that the men who wrote the Hebrew Scriptures were seriously mistaken about the nature of God.

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    Ben,

    Maybe you should not let your postmodern ideology dictate Biblical ethics–a lot of ignorance seems to show.

  • Dessany

    Now this is really pro-life.

  • So are you saying Ben isn’t a Christian? I don’t get it. You complained about his article on the grounds that not all Christians believe in inerrancy. Well, neither does Ben. The whole article is written from that exact viewpoint you are encouraging. I’m unclear on what your complaint is.

    And just judging from your comments, I’m not sure you’re in a great position to criticize a movement based on their arrogance.

  • Herm

    Has God no say in this? There are situations where that is the only option in a time of triage where someone or all is going to die by the choice of those responsible. If my child is threatening to kill another I am the first legally, ethically, morally and spiritually responsible to and for my child’s influence in the world. I raised three children with that always as a responsible parental concern to the point to where they are now lovingly responsible to and for their own children. I will not usurp their primary responsibility as you choose to do legislatively.

  • Stan_Dubinsky

    One could go back to the Hebrew Bible and find all sorts of justifications for brutal violence and killing, but these sorts of retrograde literal interpretations have not been accepted or applied by practicing Jews for well over 2000 years. Christian scripture has all sorts of condemnations that most would not accept or practice, but does not have the sort of injunctions to kill as does the Quran. So, of the Western religions today, only adherents (or “professed adherents”) of Islam still follow (or seek to impose) retrograde, barbaric prescriptions from centuries ago.

  • seashell

    huh?

  • simplymagic

    So… you support capturing sex slaves and slaughtering folks?

  • simplymagic

    I think that was Ben’s point as well. He isn’t saying all Christians are literalists, quite the opposite. Did you read the article in its entirety before making these accusations? Take a few deep breaths, your fighting the right fight – with the wrong people. If something bothered you about the article, how about quoting the specific section you feel was “puerile and ignorant”? Then we might understand what you’re upset about.

  • simplymagic

    If it quacks like a duck…

  • simplymagic

    Seriously, reading comprehension is an important life skill. Seashell was telling Popvaditecckesiae that it’s a woman’s decision. If you’re going to rebuke folks at least pick the right target!

  • simplymagic

    Do you offer free babysitting to single moms? Support welfare and free healthcare benefits for impoverished parents and their kids? Support easy access to contraception? Adopted any orphans? Because newsletters and trolling won’t cut it.

  • Herm

    Googled:

    A false dichotomy is a dichotomy that is not jointly exhaustive (there are other alternatives), or that is not mutually exclusive (the alternatives overlap), or that is possibly neither. Note that the example given above is not mutually exclusive, since the test and the program could both be wrong.

  • gjewett

    Thanks Mary Hanner, for a good, sane comment. you come from a solid Biblical tradition, not the one Ben is always ranting about.

  • Robert Wallis

    I’ve studied a bit, kind of made it my life-long hobby. One thing I’m absolutely certain of is that the more I know the more I’m sure I don’t know much at all. Years ago I might have said that and it would have been complete bulls***, just a load of false humility. Now I actually see that it is so.
    On the other hand, I’ve never been more sure of God’s love for me, the certainty of the gospel, and the truth of Scripture. The Bible–all of it–hangs together and makes more sense to me now than it ever did. There is much I don’t understand and I’m convinced I never will. But I’m okay with approaching it by faith. I’ve approached it as a critic and a scholar and a supplicant at various points in my life. Happily, I’m resolute in my faith, wary of my understanding, desperate for mercy, overwhelmed by God’s kindness and grace.
    All that goes to say: I’ll be interested in reading your thoughts on inerrancy. On a side note: have you read Sarah Ruden’s book Paul Among The People? Blew my mind and changed perceptions I’ve had for almost 50 years. Goes to show you don’t ever have to stop learning.

  • Examples please.

  • Will Dawson

    I don’t believe she’s clear on what her complaint is either…..However, there is always one contrarian without cause in every cyber-conversation, aka a TROLL!

  • Mary Hanner

    In 1953 my Sunday School teacher taught me that we do not expect the Hebrew scriptures to be history. That the Bible was inspired by God and written by men. I was a Presbyterian kid in Minnesota.

  • Mary Hanner

    I don’t believe a particular religion should take control of government, but I do believe that we need to participate in government to make certain it serves real people’s real needs. And the stance of pro-life whose focus is to prevent abortion not pass laws against them is ideal. Who isn’t pro-life with that definition? But every child born into this society needs the support of the culture to grow up healthy and educated. Anything less places the sole responsibility for the child on the shoulders of parents who are sometimes too young, too ill, too poor to bring that child to adulthood.

  • Mary Hanner

    Yes! Thank you, Benjamin Corey. Thank you for answering back with honesty and passion.

  • PinkyAndNoBrain

    Why won’t you reply to Ben? He illustrated how he’s living his faith and pro-life beliefs. Simply because he wrote a blog post expressing the nuances of this issue means that he is nothing more than a panderer? Or is it because you know you made a great deal of assumptions about his character, and now that you’ve been proven wrong, you’re going to attack his readers as emblematic of “the culture” (by which I assume you mean secular Western culture, as found in parts of North America and Western Europe, primarily)?

    ETA: I see that you did, a few minutes after I posted this comment. I appreciate that, though I’m afraid I don’t agree with what you said to him.

  • PinkyAndNoBrain

    If Jesus weren’t working within me, I wouldn’t be a feminist.
    If Jesus weren’t working within me, I wouldn’t be a pacifist.
    If Jesus weren’t working within me, I wouldn’t give a rip about my LGBT, muslim, or immigrant neighbors.

    Can I get this on a T-shirt or something? You’re a damn good writer, as well as intelligent.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    I feel your angry tone. You obviously didn’t feel my tone. If you could tell me anything. I was searching for anything that you did to try to help stop abortion. I would say OK, you care. Instead you get really angry and rant about how awesome you are. Ben, this is a free and open market place of ideas. You start it. Its yours. Most of your writings attack and belittle my views. People like me respond. Well until you block me. Which will probably happen sooner than later, based on your tone. The reason I keep on this. You say your pro life. It has become a title that means anti abortion. Walk into a room and ask the average joe what does it mean. They will say, against abortion. You add all kinds of other stuff to the name. I think you do this just to keep things complicated. When you choose to make things complicated. Don’t get mad. Just keep up the discussion. So I will ask you one more time. Do you do anything to help stop the abortion of an unborn child?

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Check it. I did. How long before he blocks me? The guy is supposedly this mature Christian and he responds like that? If someone comes in your home to kill one of your family would you stop the murder? Every day in America we slaughter the innocent for purely selfish reasons. Then we say oh lets stop it buy giving more money and education to the wealthiest poor to ever exist in the history of the world. Really thats how you would stop that guy from coming into your house to kill your family?

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Not germain to the discussion. Your talking about an extremely small percentage. You still don’t answer the question. When is it not OK?

  • idiot hunter

    Islam is the only religion still practicing ancient biblical laws literally

  • Mark Read Pickens

    I’ve been an atheist since being old enough to think. At age ten, I was calling myself that and understood full well what it meant.

    I was also baptized when far too young to object or even grasp what was happening. Are you seriously arguing my involuntary baptism makes me Christian, even though Christian ideas appall me and I consider it abuse to teach Christianity to vulnerable children?

    This reminds me of Eric Cartman when the boys were being taught Catholicism. The nun handed him a wafer, telling him “this is the body of Christ.”

    Eric stared at her incredulously and said “now you’re just being silly.”

  • Mark Read Pickens

    “The lady doth protest too much.”

  • Herm

    Oh, but it is germane to the discussion. You act as though to have to choose whether to kill anyone of any age is like some haphazard choice that is maybe okay if the victim is old but not if they if they have no choice in the matter. You now are trying to play on my paternal empathy for my child to randomly say it is never okay. Reality may suck for you but I have to tell you that decisions over life and death more often than not affects more than one. The responsibility to assign degrees of urgency to decide who lives and who dies is far more traumatic than you make it out, especially when a child is one of those who might die. When no decision is made so that no action is taken far too often all die. It really frustrates me that outsiders make those toughest of all decisions seem like in a babies, or fetus’s, case the decision must always be that the baby lives because it had no voice and the adults that then must die had a voice. You would protect what you do not know to watch all that someone else knew and had invested all their love in for many year die. You would insist that my raped daughter take her child to term no matter what it did to her quality of life. You would insist that my raped wife take her druggy rapists fetus to term because it had no voice to speak for itself. There is no natural species created by God where the mother is sacrificed for the baby or especially the fetus. If the choice were as simple as either my child dies, at any age, or my wife dies it would be my wife who I would choose to live. It is gross negligent for the health of any species or family to choose the unknown, least invested in, potential life over a known value of a constructive and productive life with decades more of proven experience. Death is a certainty for mortals and I have been at way too many death beds in my life not to feel the grief of loss no matter how old the dying are. I have officiated at way too many funerals for young and old. You dare to make those decisions for others you have no knowledge of. It is so much more correct, empathetic and loving for all to counsel to save as many lives as you can and then leave the choices to those intimately responsible who will actually hurt the most at any loss of those they love. A mother and a father feel a strong bond of love for their child to be the first they know the mother is pregnant. My wife and I had an unpreventable miscarriage 35 years ago and we both feel the grief today, our fetus child’s life mattered. I can’t judge your decisions unless they affect me and mine and your legislating the most difficult decisions a parent has to make may destructively affect me and mine. You won’t get my vote. No, I can’t tell you when it is okay because it just isn’t that simple but when the time comes I will make the best decision for the most lives to live I can. I do not wish you the experiences I have had only so you would know the truth I am trying desperately to convey to you. I know you mean well but it isn’t your responsibility to have the law do the dirty work for you so that you don’t have to get intimate with life and death. Please forgive the ramble but it is late from a very long and exhausting day. This will not be edited.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Still no answer to the question.

  • Matthew

    If you have written an article about how to understand those parts of the Bible you describe, then a link would be greatly appreciated. If not, such an article would be very helpful.

  • BillFortenberry

    The key to understanding the Old Testament commands to kill is found in the answer to the question, “Why is killing someone wrong?” When we consider the Bible’s answer to this question, we can see why some killings are justified and others are not. I’ve presented a detailed examination of this concept online at: http://www.increasinglearning.com/canaanites.html

  • WierdHarold

    My conclusion, as well. Here’s a light bit of dribble proposing a solution, which of course will never happen, but maybe someone will enjoy it.

    http://www.tradersbend.com/Commentary/World%20Peace.htm

  • WierdHarold

    Pretty much my conclusion as well. Here’s a light bit of dribble proposing a solution that will probably never occur, Still, it’s a fun read…

    http://www.tradersbend.com/Commentary/World%20Peace.htm

  • Joshua King

    Je’Czaja, I’m an evangelical who was raised in the Church and continue to serve in the Church. I don’t think inerrancy means the Bible is scientifically true…I’ve never heard another evangelical leader define it that way. I’m sorry if someone led you to believe that is what it meant. The Christian leaders I followed and listened to over the years have pointed to inerrancy as a comprehensive story of God’s redemption through Jesus. The OT is a collection of stories from various authors and places that together ultimately forecast a coming savior. For the Jews, it was and remains a coming Messiah. For Christians, we identify Jesus as that Messiah. In that respect, much of what we read in the OT is descriptive and not prescriptive. I think many Christians, particularly those within “fundamentalist” circles, read everything in the Bible as prescriptive, which is an unfortunate mistake. I think when we read the entire Bible as a meta-narrative with Jesus at the center, we begin to better understand the brokenness of humanity following sin’s entrance into Creation, and better realize our need for someone to rescue and restore us. I think it also gives us a much better perspective to see beyond the nitty gritty details that don’t really matter to the bigger picture being unfolded in human history. I believe Jesus to be that Savior, the very Son of God taking on human form in order to save humanity. To me this is a beautiful redemption story, and without the darker tones of the Bible we would not see or comprehend the depth of the story. So I actually resonate with your comments. Too often we get caught up in the construction of the canvas and lose sight of the incredible story painted on the canvas. So I have understood inerrancy to mean everything there in the Bible is there for a reason, a God-inspired reason. That’s not to say every consonant, preposition, or adjective is inerrant…any linguist could deconstruct that argument…but the metanarrative is inerrant. Of course, I don’t expect every Christian brother or sister to agree with everything I may believe. But this doctrine has actually been an incredible source of peace for me.

  • Margot Fernandez

    And in regard to evangelical un-Christianity, they would be right, wouldn’t they? And the evangelicals are hucksters for a non-existent religion called Old Testament Christianity. So they are drawing from the same mistaken theology that gave the Hebrew people the mistaken idea that God commits mass murder and sends punishment in the form of defeat in war or “natural” catastrophe to those who fail to keep his Law.
    I refer to this as the Jewish Existential Predicament and the interesting thing about it is that actual Jewish theology has moved on from these ideas. If you read a Jewish theologian like Rabbi Harold Kushner you will see that they believe in random causality–no relationship between behavior and misfortune–among other things. The whole idea of God’s punishment crashed on the Holocaust and they began to rethink it. Christians did not. We must start dealing with a viable concept of the nature of God before Christianity goes extinct.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    You guys are amazing. I discovered this site by talking to people just like you. This is where they got their arguments. I am a shameful, sleazy, lazy, liar that is going to hell. “Progressive Christianity” sure knows how to engage in the free market place of ideas. Margot, keep it up. Please, you are an awesome example of Ben’s followers. Oh, and still no answer to the question. I’m going go get some time in the water, maybe a barrel if God blesses me. Let me know if you guys ever get some inkling of an answer.

  • Herm

    That’s the answer but not the one you want. Sorry that you don’t understand. I might, also, interject that your attitude is just as inconsiderate for the quality and longevity of the woman who carries the child as you are accusing me of in regard to the poor little fetus who can’t speak for itself, him or her. You clearly do not know the real burden of responsibility for the life of ALL. You do not know the depth of grief from losing anyone you truly love, you just cannot know. I have always been pro-life with choice always respecting those who with love and no malicious self-indulgent intent are forced to take a life or cannot save a life. Mortality sucks but love of and for all needs no legislation to find the best solution available when there are no perfect or even good solutions for all involved. Take that up with your Creator for I didn’t make life as it is. In the mean time, please, end this holier than thou routine it won’t work here. There is no good to to die so I will not give you an answer as to when it is okay but that when the time comes there will always be someone left with the responsibility. You’re not displaying love for mankind as a whole but for your quest to control another’s life that is not yours to control, voice or no voice.

  • simplymagic

    Did you? Because you seem to spend a lot of time doing THIS instead.

    Again, what do you do to support struggling parents? What do you do for previously unborn babies AFTER their born? Do you do anything at all to prevent unwanted children in the first place? Do you do ANYTHING to make the world a place where women can thrive?

    You can be “against abortion” on the internet all you want – you know you’re not doing a damn thing to promote life. Your not putting your money and time where your mouth is to actually save babies. You should be changing diapers for a young single mom for free, handing out condoms, and feeding poor families, but instead you’re here, pathetically trying to call out someone who has done more for children than you ever will.

    Enjoy your newsletter, hypocrite.

  • Yep, that’s why Christian churches are falling all over themselves to marry gay couples.

  • Which ideology do you recommend?

  • Well, hold on. In your first comment, you said that Ben was -against- justice for the unborn. Now, you want him to produce “an article where you totally and completely argue for the life of the unborn.”

    So, are you upset because Ben doesn’t actively defend unborn life, or are you upset because Ben is actively opposed to unborn life? Because if it’s the former, you are, in fact, a liar. If it’s the latter, you’re just not very bright.

  • Yeah, the cops just arrested my neighbor last night because he wasn’t pro homosexual marriage. Good thing he respects the cops.

  • The Chicago statement on inerrancy seems to argue, IMO, that inerrancy must necessitate the historic stories recorded as being historically true. Article XII specifically states that scientific discoveries cannot overturn inerrancy, and another article specifically talks about the global flood. So, I think there might be more of us than you’ve encountered previously who were in fact, taught that inerrancy also points to scientific inerrancy. I could totally sign on to a definition of inerrancy that simply stated the “bible is God’s comprehensive story of redemption through Jesus.”

  • Don Lowery

    Let’s see…the “prosperity gospel”…homophobic churches…too many evangelical/fundamentalists who crave/enjoy violence…the list goes on. Actually…I have been treated better personally/professionally by those who follow Islam than I ever was by any fundamentalist who claims the Bible is inerrant. It would be safe to say that if it had not been for my Islamic friends…I would have never became a Mennonite/Church of the Brethren follower.

  • Are you for real? Seriously, you are either Satanic or just the dumbest person who learned how to use a keyboard.

    Ben adopted unwanted children.

    I can’t even fathom how dark someone’s soul would have to be or how impaired their thinking must be to respond the way you did. You make Jesus look horrible.

  • gimpi1

    Actually, Margot did not describe you as shameful, sleazy or lazy. She described your arguments as lazy and sleazy intellectually, and said you should be ashamed to use them. That’s different. She addressed your arguments. You describe an attack on yourself.

    An attack on the individual is not justified. Attacking their arguments is how people discuss contentious issues.

    Personally, I wouldn’t have used the word “sleazy.” Lazy, now, in my view that fits. You raise no new points, don’t address any potential difference of opinion, and use an “excluded middle” logical fallacy. In my view, that’s lazy arguing.

  • The Old Testament and the New Testament form the Christian bible. Jesus quoted from the Old Testament numerous times but He never said forget the scriptures you cannot justify in whatever age you live in. It is up to you to discover why God chose to take certain actions and committed them to scripture for our benefit. I’ll try to give you an example rather than quote scripture as you already know the scriptures. Genesis tells us that the universe had a “beginning.” Until 65 years ago this was not accepted. In fact, it was not known that there were trillions of other stars outside of our galaxy. Today science has proven that the universe did in fact have a beginning – 13 billion years ago. There is no escape from this fact. It is now proven beyond a doubt; anyone who can understand scripture can understand the many recent books published for the lay person on this subject. However, the group that believes the earth is on 6000 years old cannot accept this fact because it differs from their understanding of scripture. Since science only confirms scripture the only conclusion is that the young earth groups are not correct in their interpretation of scripture. Now when you ask them about this they will quote scripture after scripture to “prove” their stand. However, they are still wrong they just don’t want to accept it yet. But, and this is important for you to consider, they do not insist that the bible is wrong, inconsistent or full of irrelevant “ancient scriptures.” You on the other hand have ventured far out on the limb and I am afraid the branch is about to break. Please consider your actions in light of your audience. Are you sure you want to keep insisting that the bible is wrong because you are right?

  • Guy Norred

    I certainly hope so–we have a long way to go to get past the dim mirror. As another commentor has said, our ability to picture God is still at the stick figure stage.

  • gimpi1

    Ok, this is what I mean by people being socially inept.

    You made a profoundly wrong statement about Ben. You were rightly called on it. Anyone with an ounce of either empathy or social skills would walk back their statement, apologize for leaping to unwarranted conclusions and moderate their tone. Someone like that might actually be listened to, might influence other peoples opinions.

    Instead, you barge on ahead, insisting that black is white, so you’re right after all. In doing so, you annoy and alienate the very people you (presumably) hope to convince.

    Your views aren’t being belittled. They are being challenged. If you can’t rise to the challenge like a mature, rational person, then you will convince no one. So far, you aren’t offering arguments, you’re offering sound-bites. And, if you are, indeed banned, it won’t be for your views, It will be because you articulate them poorly, and seem to take pride in being rude and annoying.

  • gimpi1

    Wouldn’t that be nice?

  • Guy Norred

    You know I have to fight my mind automatically shutting down at the phrase “the culture” so much these days. (Admittedly I have already just kill filed Popvaditecclesiae which is probably just as bad….)

  • Joshua King

    Thanks for writing this article, Benjamin. Granted, I disagree and still hold to biblical inerrancy, but I think it’s valuable to hear from differing perspectives so we don’t become insulated…which I think may have contributed to the way so many view Scripture as inerrant down to the smallest detail. You raise some great points for consideration and deeper study.

  • gimpi1

    I have a weird, and no doubt nonsensical theory about that. I’ll throw it out, just for giggles:

    When Christendom was engaging in Crusades, Inquisitions, Pogroms and Witch-Hunts, it was during their “terrible teens,” the 12 through 16th centuries. Islam is now just over 1,400 years old. Their “terrible teens.”

    Perhaps ideologies and societies mature like people do. Perhaps some of what we’re seeing is a belief-system growing up, just the way the Western belief-system did in the middle-ages.

    You say “mankind” has left these atrocities behind. They haven’t. They’re not confined to Islam, either. Remember the nerve-gas attacks in the Japanese subway? Remember the youth-camp shot up in Norway? Remember Oklahoma City? Witch-hunts and lynching of gay people are sadly common in many African nations. The KKK was the most powerful, active terrorist organization in the world for most of the 20th century.

    These things are, however less common in the west. That might be because we’ve got a few years on them, belief-wise.

    (See, I told you it was silly.)

  • gimpi1

    Not quite true. Christian Dominionists want to impose Old Testament law — first in the U.S. and eventually, presumably by conquest, the entire world. It’s a small belief-system, but it has influence all out of pace with its numbers. You see aspects of it in Christian Home-Schooling culture, in the Quiverfull theology and the drive to take political power and legislate basle on the bible. Google Rousas Rushdoony for more information.

  • The idea that pro-life means nothing more than “anti-abortion” and isn’t constrained by getting results or actually saving any lives is just ridiculous.

    If you don’t care about actually preventing abortions (birth control, sex ed, financial help for the poor) and you don’t care about taking care of children after they aren’t aborted (in a way more substantial than folding their clothes)- you aren’t pro-life. You are just worshiping a title at the altar of political ideology.

  • gimpi1

    So, are you arguing that slaughtering everyone in a city, including the powerless and children, or enslaving prisoners of war, or sex-trafficking prisoners of war are ever right?

  • Thanks. I’d also point out that my only contention here was that “whatever inerrancy means, it must mean something different than the version we grew up with.” I believe all scripture is inspired, and that whatever the text ultimately means, is without error. Mainly in that the goal of scripture is to point to Jesus, and it does that in a variety of ways. My push-back was simply against a certain version of inerrancy, FWIW.

  • Joshua King

    Thanks!

  • Christopher Ryan Cole

    God commanded that His people wipe out the others because there sin was so great and they were so wicked, and God did not want His people to be influenced by them. Allah says to kill indiscriminately. The difference in the New Testament is that God poured out His judgement of sin on Christ, and Christ’s atonement made it possible for us to be redeemed and restored.

  • Herm

    “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 7:12

    “Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”” Matthew 22:37-40

    “On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?” He answered, “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”” Luke 10:25-28

    What more must I know for absolutely sure to live eternally?

    Oh, wait, there is some more support to guide us on our never ending journey:

    ““I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.” John 16:12-13

    The most divine Good News is He has come and been here for nearly 2,000 years, yet most people don’t seem to see Him, know Him or trust Him. Why don’t we point to He who is right rather than the mixed bag illustrating a 5,775 year old relationship struggle between God and Their image? It is so written in that mixed bag that points in the Old Testament to the Christ and His sacrifice and in the New Testament to the Spirit that connects us as one in the hearts and minds of our Brother and of our Father and They one in each of our open hearts and minds bound in reciprocal love.

    The Family of God is dynamic, without beginning and without end, but the Bible is only a road sign along the journey to the end of eternal life. Once past the sign there need be no looking back if you’ve found the Guide to continue on the path to never ending life. Welcome!

  • Herm

    So “Shock and Awe” was not indiscriminate?

  • Christopher Ryan Cole

    Apples and oranges. God did not tell us to go into the Middle East and wipe out Muslims. God, in the Old Testament, did tell His people to wipe out the people occupying the land as judgment on their sin. Plus, we are not a second Israel. So what you wrote does not apply.

  • Herm

    You have written toward your conclusion, “Of course, this brings up the question of whether it is acceptable for someone to commit genocide in the name of God today, and the answer to this is that it would be acceptable if it were consistent with the Law of God”

    How exactly does is that supported by the following regarding the “Law of God”?

    “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 7:12

    “Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”” Matthew 22:37-40

    Wiping out an entire nation of mankind in the image of God can really be consistent with all the Law and the Prophets?

  • Herm

    What you don’t seem to understand is God and Allah are not apples and oranges. They are the very same reference to the only God of Abraham. By way of a Christian church attending Commander and Chief of the USA sending into a Muslim governed sovereign nation a fiery death of 100,000 Muslims and Christians it appears to the rest of the world as our Christian God telling “us to go into the Middle East and wipe out Muslims”. Yes, all I have written applies.

    Can you see the crucified and risen King of the Jews ordering such an attack ever?

  • Ben Denton

    You do realize that there are millions of just causes out there that deserve our full attention and devotion. However one person can not devote their whole life to all of them. Benjamin has found something that he is passionate about and has devoted himself to that and shares it with the world That should be celebrated. The fact that you are passionate about something else doesn’t mean his passion is misguided. It just means that there is a lot of screwed up places in the world that need more people loving on them. Kudos to him for loving social justice. Kudos to you for loving unborn children. Why can’t we just leave it at that?

  • Christopher Ryan Cole

    Thinking that the God of the Old Testament and Allah are the same shows you really don’t know what you are talking about. The God of the Old Testament put in place a plan to redeem humanity, and everything He did was a foreshadowing of that. Allah, on the other hand, has no Son, has not put any plan into place to redeem humanity, and you can never be assured that you have done enough to please him. Until you realize that God and Allah are not the same, I will respond no more to you.

  • Herm

    We have been commanded, for our good and not God’s, to take a sabbatical from the overwhelming stresses of life. We are only little children of God and not expected to fight the good fight of our Family all the way to the end. We can trust our spiritually adult Brother to hang in there to share the very first and last Word when our little hearts and minds are exhausted. We can thank our Father for the “kill file”.

  • Herm

    eternally?

  • Guy Norred

    I certainly do. :-)

  • Jeff Preuss

    That’s how I see it. The Bible is true in the sense of the long-form story of redemption in Christ, and I don’t need each and every verse to be literal, objective, scientific or historical truth for the meta story to work. However, many people seem to struggle with that dichotomy, and the only way they can accept the story of Jesus as real and true is if everything else in the Bible is literal fact.

    Which is where the fear seems to come into play. When we have discussions in which we question a long held interpretation of Scripture, we are in essence challenging the reality of God to those folks. And they can’t change the bathwater without throwing out the baby.

  • Ibn Tahhara

    And that is I think a major cause of your confusion. I’m not sure one can argue that “Allah” and “Yahweh” do refer to the same entity. That realization usually forms part of the journey out of Islam for many Musims (see eg Abdu Murray, “Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus”. I’m with you on the toxic mix of politics / religion in some branches of American Christianity, however. A helpful read here is Bruxy Cavey, “The End of Religion”.

  • Ibn Tahhara

    There’s a helpful discussion of that here (if the Dropbox link works) >>> https://www.dropbox.com/s/xxm68x60jb6upte/IslamInContext_FinalDraft.pdf?dl=0 >>> see esp Dr Walker’s chapter.

  • Trilemma

    I’ve entertained the same theory. I hope we don’t have to wait several hundred years for Islam to get through its “terrible teens.”

  • Al Cruise

    When you go out and slaughter women and children you need to justify it . Saying God told us to do it is the best way. Seems to always work.

  • Bill

    I don’t disagree with you, but I still don’t follow the logic of Ben’s idea of trying to debunk inerrancy of scripture with the OT actions he discussed.

  • Bill

    I agree with your post but do not understand Mt. Corey’s logic of tying OT behavior with inerrancy of scripture.

  • Herm

    An excellent read and will remain a keeper.

    Thank you for the disclaimer of “I think” for in my mind and heart most of the children of Abraham abuse the God/Allah they do not know. This journey has never been founded on just whose theory is most righteous. The destination from this earth is in relationship with the Family of God who by any other name will be the same.

    I suggest two reads back at you, “Zealot” and “No God But God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam” both by Reza Aslan.

    My disclaimer: I don’t buy 100% into any one of the three books we draw attention to but each in its own way is enlightening to begin to love each other to be constructive and productive for each other, even should that mean dying on our cross for and by our enemy in the example of our risen Lord.

    Fear of another only because (s)he does not share our family name or rituals is not what we would have that other do to us. I do fear the unsheathed sword when retribution is the answer by another drawn sword. Fear of the sword from the mouth of Jesus is the only answer to peace and joy because the cross we carry says we have no fear of another’s physical sword since we answer to our spiritual life and Lord (and His example) only.

    There is no major cause for my confusion, though my verbosity may be a cause for too many other’s confusion, for my Teacher feeds my heart and mind exactly to the level I am able to digest. I am but an ignorant little child who knows and trusts our entire Family of God, not the least of whom are our Father and Brother.

    I believe you are and do too. Thank you!

    Love you!

  • MrCorvus

    How can babies be wicked?

  • Trilemma

    The Lord’s Supper and baptism are ancient biblical practices. The entire Bible was written back in the Iron Age.

  • Herm

    … for certain in the hearts and minds of those who do not know God. Our peaceful and joyful history of mankind proves only God’s divine guidance could have directed such perfectly desirable results. What does it mean when we do over and over again the same exact thing expecting each and every time different results?

  • Herm

    I guess then that the Jews of Israel aren’t really practicing brutal violence and killing against the Palestinians? okay

  • Herm

    Reynaldo De Leon in Jesus’ name become an Anabaptist author, speaker, blogger, two-time graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (Theology & Missiology), a doctoral candidate at Fuller Seminary, and a member of the Phi Alpha Chi Honors Society so that maybe less ignorance might show through with more substance shared.

  • GoFish

    Jesus specifically stated the universal principal that a house divided cannot stand. If you accept the OT narrative … God wiped out the entire population of the world… babies, puppies … everybody and preserved the bare minimum to start again. He also destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah’s entire population. In Egypt he sent his Angel to kill all of the first born children. In a different situation he tells his army to do it. In fact he was, at one point determined to wipe out his own people. Lock stock and barrel and would have if Moses hadn’t’ intervened. God’s goals and methods cant be judged. What is the difference doing it one way or doing another? If you accept that his thoughts/ his justice is perfect … he can use any means at his disposal. In the OT that was his MO. Jesus, in the NT specifically stated a drastic change of tactic in dealing with evil on a personal level. At the same time he never ever says to be passive or to allow evil to usurp power and in fact tells his disciples that he would personally send the Holy Spirit to guide in the discernment of good vs evil. In fact he states that owning a sword is critical (luke 22:36). Radical Muslims reject the Son of God’s words and instead are employing a counterfeit of an out of date/ pseudo OT system and calling it god. Jesus said… by their deeds you will know them. Jesus said that his followers worship/ honor him and his words in spirit and in truth. Radical Muslims do exactly the opposite. One example is that according to Sharia … lying is perfectly acceptable as a way of dealing with non Muslims. Christians are not Muslims. If they worship the same God … How can it make sense for Allah to lie to God in the furthering of one will? Jesus specifically stated the universal principal that a house divided cannot stand.

  • Herm

    Was not OT behavior said to have been justified in writing as commanded by the same God of the NT? Is there not some dichotomy between the NT and the OT enough that would indicate some errors in one or both? Does that negate a chance that God actually lives to serve us in Their image? How might we prove that to ourselves; by the book written by the hand of mankind, the tablets written in stone by the hand of God, by the science of mankind, by testing different scenarios in our hearts and minds at the disposal of our free will, by utilizing the Spirit of Truth Jesus and our Father speaks through, and/or by all or some? If each of us discerned from each of our unique perspectives, utilizing all of the very same resources, do you believe any of mankind today would arrive at a full understanding of Truth guaranteed inerrant? Is there something to be said that little children, even of God, are not capable of inerrancy, especially when restricted to immature interpretation?

  • Please allow me to share an article that largely responds to this subject:

    Islam, OT/NT Hybrid: its Theological Nature and Errors

    What I would say is that the proper place of Islam in salvation history is the completely anti-Trinitarian and anti-Christological religion that retains the shell of the Gospel. When you follow these implications, it works out all the deficiencies of the religion.

    Islam and all other major spiritual disruptions in the last 1700 years are NOT just crazy and random… They are following a logical, theological path. I think i have shared this with you before.

    From this view, Islam is not just coming up out of nowhere. It is is the logical conclusion of the first three hundred years of heresies. More specifically, we can in fact say the first age of heresies post-pagan Rome is PARTIAL attacks on the Trinity and Incarnation, ~ AD 300 – 600: Arianism, Monophysitism, Monothelyte, Nestorianism.

    The second age is COMPLETE attack on Trinity and Incarnation: Islam.

    Basically, what Islam seems to do in almost all cases is: take Judeo-Christianity and do what Christianity has UNLESS….UNLESS the element of Christianity involves a REDEMPTION of an OT type.

    Like Christianity, it seeks the world to become united in a spiritual kingdom of truth and good. It is monotheist but rejects the Trinity, so its God is Monotarian. It rejects the Incarnation, so Chirst is merely a messenger and not God. And finally, unlike Arianism, Islam attacks Jesus in full by saying there is a revelation that goes BEYOND Him. “We await no new Revelation, for God has spoken His Final Word in Christ.” CCC. So, Islam goes the ultimate step beyond Arianism: Arianism indeed totally denied the Trinity and Incarnation, but they didn’t suggest that God had more to say BEYOND Christ. Islam DOES. This makes their attack on the Nature of God in mystery complete.

    Now to elements that were redeemed.

    The blood curdling take over of the holy land sanctioned by God to the Jews in the OT was necessary to give a picture of casting out all evil in a culture. The Church redeems this. We don’t go in and slaughter the people. We “cast out” what is SPIRITUALLY unclean. In FACT, maybe not CAST OUT, but RENEW… or TRANSFORM. Islam rejects this fulfillment, and so tends to take lands by force, like Israel did.

    Too, the Church fulfills Pentecost: the tongues in multiplication were initially a curse: they divided man and set him up for bloodshed and division, at Babel. Pentecost did not redeem language by restoring UNICITY, but retaining the BEAUTY by DIVERSITY, so that all, though diverse, can UNDERSTAND one another. Indeed, multiplicity and diversity in nations and cultures is a BLESSING from God, like a field of many different flowers.

    Like the little flower, St Therese of Liseux, one of many female Doctors of the Catholic Church, said: one can object, that we are not all the same, we have different chances of being saved. But, if all were roses, where would be the lily?

    The devil knows theology, and so he can set up a perfect religion that has theological precision. And God lets him, because He can use it, use it to show the deficiencies, so that when the deficiencies reach apocalyptic proportion, He is able to show humanity their need for what Islam lacks.

    So, again, the Church REDEEMS the multilingual and the multicultural. When it converts a society it does NOT annihilate its language or culture. It TRANSFORMS them, ELEVATES them. Notice, ISLAM does NOT redeem those. ISLAM’s solution to multilanguage is ANNIHILATION of language, FORCING unicity. It FORCES Arabic. Note, all Islam speaks Arabic. ALL Islam has same culture. Same burka, turbon, mosque.

    DEATH PENALTY

    What did JESUS do about the Old Testament DEATH PENALTY?! It is one of the most beloved, famous scenes in the Gospel. The woman caught in adultery. Jesus shewed the ultimate divine interpretation. God instituted hard core, many times capital, punishments for serous sin in the OT as a picture of HELL. The ultimate fate of serious sin to death is ETERNAL death. God needed to give an initial revelation of the gravity of serious sin, so He gave the best possible picture: PHYSICAL DEATH.

    But JESUS is the one who REDEEMS that Old Law, by showing that God does not ultimately want to punish us in this life. He wants to have mercy and save us. Hence, the NT equivalent for serous sin is now confession, amendment of purpose, not death. Islam REJECTS this, since Jesus did it, since it is a NEW Testament redemption, like the elements we have discussed so far. So Islam goes BACK to the OT. Hence why Islam tends to have SEVERE, almost MERCILESS PUNISHMENTS for serious sin. Cut off hand of thief. Girl gets pregnant, stone her. Same sex? Just as they were stoned in OT, they are killed by Islam.

    They also have dietary restrictions, like OT. NT renewed that. Pork was just a symbol of what is SPIRITUALLY unclean. They remain OLD.

    This sums up most of the problems of Islam. It also shows that Islam does not make a random appearance in salvation history. It is logical. It brings the first heresies to their logical fullness.

  • Herm

    Jesus commands only His disciples who know Him. Jesus set a prerequisite that none can be His disciple without hating carnal family (blood, species, church and national) and without picking up their own cross as did He. What have you done to help those who reject the Son of God’s words because they do not know Him?

  • Margot Fernandez

    Sorry, I am not responsible for answering that idiotic question. Furthermore, I am not one of “Ben’s followers,” as I AM a progressive Christian and I wrote a column online dealing with liberal Christianity for more than four years.
    The only answer I can provide for the question that I understand is: when DO you have permission to kill your children? would have to be my personal answer. I can’t force you to accept it
    First: terminating a pregnancy is SOMETIMES used by irresponsible and ignorant women as a form of retro-active birth control. I would not do that, but I know that it is done. There is nothing I can do about it but it is a necessary evil. Women should always have freedom to choose what is best for their own bodies and lives.
    Terminating a pregnancy is sometimes necessary to save the life of a mother. Do you know what an ectopic pregnancy is? The baby is located outside the womb, typically in a Fallopian tube. This pregnancy cannot survive and it will kill the mother if it is not terminated.
    Second: an egg is not a chicken. A mass of cells is not a baby. If you don’t believe that I invite you to put chopped raw chicken into a cake mix and see how far you get.
    Third: reproductive health and freedom trump the abuse of medical techniques just because the mother doesn’t want to have a baby. If she doesn’t, it is her baby and her body, not mine, so I have NO OPINION other than it is regrettable.
    If you think I am going to come up with a THEORETICAL situation in which a pregnant woman ought to be forced to carry a pregnancy to term, I am sorry, there isn’t one. I hope you were not looking for a simple answer. Most people are.

  • Bill

    Herm,

    I think I understand what you are saying and agree with it in general. However, to make the claim that one’s belief in the inerrancy of scripture and at the same time believing acts done by terrorists are wrong are incompatible or inconsistent does not follow logically – at least not to me.

    I happen to think both can be – and are – true, and either am not understanding cory’s argument or understanding it but disagreeing there’s a logical connection.

  • chopin

    to be honest your verbosity used to irritate me! I took a look at that reaction, and begin to try to put myself in your shoes. I can’t really do that. I have come to appreciate the fact that eventually you get down to saying something that I have consistently needed to hear bc I felt the Holy Spirit speaking through you.
    The accommodation I made for myself was to just skim your material for the
    ‘Nuggets’ cuz you often have some very comforting things to say. I am mindful of the fact that when my posts go on and on usually it’s because I want to get something out of my head.
    I like keeping a record of what I said. I use my disqus profile as a journal. there aren’t very many people in my part of the world I can talk to about issues of religion and politics. I talk to myself a lot! I am always talking to God.

  • Herm

    Scott I am not a Pauline so let’s get that out right away. You wrote, “Too, the Church fulfills Pentecost:”. I would submit that the Holy Spirit at Pentecost fulfilled the church of our High Priest. I testify that the Spirit of Truth is available to even the least scholarly to become a child of God today; born Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Atheist or Agnostic alike. I am living proof.

    God loves you exactly as you are and, in addition, for your honest spirit of research and development. I love you, too!!! thanks

  • Herm

    Oh dear God, I love you!!!

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Heres a great story about the Islamic culture, and our duplicity in homosexual attacks on young boys. Notice it comes from the NY Times. One of your guys great instruments of truth telling. Interesting that the secretary of the Army is an openly homosexual man.http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/21/world/asia/us-soldiers-told-to-ignore-afghan-allies-abuse-of-boys.html

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    You came up with some very small percentages there. Greater than 120 million humans have been aborted in America. Most used as birth control. Less than 1 percent of those 120 million dead innocents. Where from the things you bring up. Thats from the CDC. Your wonderful Federal Govt.

  • Herm

    Mr. Corey is not saying terrorists, Christian or Muslim, are not wrong in their destructive spirit, just the opposite. What I read from this article is that we, as discerning Christians, cannot judge a terrorist today by the God portrayed in the Old Testament without asking if it was okay with God then why not now? All, and I mean all, who hang their faith on inerrancy of scripture insist that God today is the same God as yesterday and will be the same God always, no change.

    If we are to accept the words and example of Jesus as the will of God the Father there either was a change in God’s attitude or not all of what is written in the Old Testament is from the inspiration of God. If we accept that God changed then ISIS still is allowed by God to conduct themselves by the rules of the Old Testament as they don’t know Jesus so they can’t abide in His authority. Which way would we have it because comparing the entire NT with the entire OT literally we can’t have it both ways without a major reversal in God’s attitude? Do we accept the God of war and genocide in the Old Testament or the God of divine love in the New Testament who serves all the way to dying for all of mankind? If both can be true show me how and I promise to rethink biblical innerancy. Love you and thank you!

  • whollyfool

    Amazing answer Herm. Love you.

  • Herm

    This applies how?

  • seashell

    I love you too, chopin!

  • thank you, Herm, yes, even those who belong to the Church imperfectly are part of this fulfillment. Anyone who says as best as he can, “Higher power, show me the way, higher power help me follow the way”, or even “higher power, if you are UP there, help me, show me” is a friend of God. God bless you, Herm!

  • seashell

    Hilarious! Fits the topic to a Tee. Thanks!

  • God and Allah are the same– we are all three (Christians, Muslims and Jews) part of the Abrahamic faiths. Christians in the middle east call God Allah, because that’s the word for God.

    That doesn’t mean that Jews are correct in describing God, it doesn’t mean that Muslims are correct or that we are always correct in how we describe him, but it is in fact, referencing the same deity no matter how wrong one side or the other may be in their descriptions of him.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Oh, we aren’t talking about Islam?

  • Bill

    Herm,

    Thanks for the explanation. I understand the lint he is trying to make now. However, I happen to disagree that God cannot be the same yesterday, today and tomorrow and fit in with the rest of it. In the OT, God made it really clear He is “loving and compassionate, slow to anger”… Stated quite clearly to and through Moses and through David and others, but also that He is a just God, stated clearly to and through the same. To my understanding, the need for Jesus and the reality of Him coming to earth as a sacrifice are results of both attributes.

    For Christians, having accepted this free gift He directs us to behave and think differently – do not judge, love our enemies, etc. I believe this can be consistent with a view of inerrant scriptures.

    Thanks again for your thoughtful and clarifying response.

    Bill

  • otrotierra

    It worked well for Evangelical Charles Stanley in his justification of slaughtering Iraqis with George W. Bush’s “Shock & Awe” terrorist attack in 2003.

  • Herm

    Where did the rethinking inerrancy of the Bible part of the entire equation go? If we thought of C + I = G why do you insist on going mono to discuss only I?

  • La Kim

    With all due respect, Phil, there is not a single charge in any level of law in the United States that would lead to someone’s arrest because they aren’t “pro-homosexual marriage”. And for you to say so is incredibly untruthful and misleading.

    One cannot be arrested for a belief in something. Your neighbor is entitled to his own personal beliefs, as all are (including Neo-nazis, Westboro Baptist, the KKK, etc). It is only when those beliefs are translated into action or activities that the government may become involved, perhaps through an arrest for prejudice, discrimination, hate speech, etc. Additionally, if representing the government in some capacity (civil service, employee), one may not use personal belief to keep one from performing the necessary functions of that job. Your neighbor was most likely arrested for actively resisting in some way something the Supreme Court has ruled legal (marriage for all consenting adults regardless of sexual orientation).

    Perhaps you can check to see what the actual arrest charge was and update us?

  • Herm

    Thank you Bill for sharing your grace and loving Spirit with me. I am not arguing or competing with you but I have a different perspective I would love to share with you.

    From my childlike perspective you correctly said that God in the Old Testament is clearly portrayed as “loving and compassionate, slow to anger”. To that I would add it would not be clear without the Spirit and living example of Jesus to truly point out where that is mixed in with God portrayed as wrathful and vengeful in commanding His chosen people to kill all of those who just really pissed God off or, in some cases, simply because they weren’t His chosen people.

    That though was incidental, what I most want to share with you is in the image of God human kind is a plurality of social beings with free will in relationship as well as now a more clear recognition their whole being as one mankind. We depend on dynamic relationship to find our worth. Relationship is constantly in a state of change depending on the attitude of the influences surrounding and within any given relationship.

    What might you project the result to be from the open invitation, extended to those of mankind who can and do choose to love (to keep the prerequisite list short), to become children of God in Jesus as a Brother, in the Father, Jesus in them, the Father in them all by way of the Holy Spirit connecting each together? I cannot understand any other result than the same dynamic state of flux we understand all relationships of mankind to be in. The only exception would be the larger scale and the purely spiritual change in God by changing influences from us.

    In the Spirit of Truth I have learned better everyday how to love our siblings of Man, our Siblings of God, my neighbors, my enemies, the Holy Spirit in my heart and mind and our Father in Heaven. Would you deny our Father and Brother the joy in change to grow deeper in love of you? I sure wouldn’t and most I treasure the reciprocal exchange of our growing love in God.

    Thank you so very much for your time and your ear!

    Love you,

    Herm

  • It was sarcasm. :)

  • This is so wrong I don’t even know where to start. Maybe with the idea that Arians, etc. were all Christians.

  • Is genocide ok if it foreshadows something good? Somehow, I have a hard time seeing God go, “I realize killing all these men, women, children, and cattle might seem atrocious, but you really need to consider the typological value, here.”

    Also, Arabic Christians call God “Allah.” It is the Arabic word for God. In fact, Christians were the first to call God “Allah.”

  • Ike

    Sorry,
    this article is basically balderdash. Why do you think Lamb of God was
    slain in the spirit at the foundation of the world? Why do you think
    Yahshua came? It was to save us from the wages of sin – physical and
    spiritual death. Sin is no small matter
    – it prevents us having a relationship with our Loving God both now and
    FOREVER. No wonder God hates it so much. When Adam and Eve sinned, our
    fate was already sealed, we were literally dead already. What fate is
    worse than eternal death, death forever? Thank God, however that Yahshua
    provided an escape route. The Bible is without error, do not be led
    astray, not even for a moment. From Genesis to Revelation, it is
    consistent, and reveals Yahshua as the God of Love, but also the God of
    Justice. Let us not feel the force of His Justice, for it is a terrible
    thing..

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    Let’s just put it this way, there is a historical and cultural context to the setting itself–we shouldn’t be using postmodern views to condemn whatever we don’t agree with.

    I do not support capturing sex slaves; however, the Bible does provide tidbit examples of why this was justified (e.g., the Canaanite destruction was prophesied in Genesis & Exodus because these people have been wicked. In fact, they had 400 years to repent of their wickedness).

  • Saying it is wrong to kill one’s enemy is not a “postmodern view” (as if postmodern = bad, evil) but what Jesus taught 2000 years ago. I condemn these actions because Jesus condemns these actions.

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    How about the traditional interpretation from an inerrant view?

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    You should probably read the title Ben gave this article.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Mr Denton, very good! I am just challenging Mr Corey on the abortion issue alone. I believe its a feint to the right, when he’s really going left on the abortion issue. Thats why I said the give me “anything.” He gave me a lot of noble things he does. Non of which have anything to do with abortion. I honestly was hoping he would have something. Its very disappointing. But thats who these guys are.

  • Herm

    why standing against
    islamic violence = I
    forces you = C
    to rethink biblical inerrancy = G

  • So, a modernist ideology, then.

  • Emma

    But… they literally are the same. Unless you mean in a very metaphorical way (i.e. “any god that would [blank] is not the same God that I believe in!”). But in an actual historical sense, looking at the common origins of all three religions (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam), they are all three about the One God – the God who created the Garden of Eden, the God of Moses and Abraham and Isaac.

    You can disagree with their understanding of that God, certainly – and you can point out that the other two faiths are not *Trinitarian* in their believe in that God – but at root they are not about different Gods. Just like you wouldn’t say that the French do not believe in the same God because they call him “Dieu”. Allah is literally “God” in a different language, and literally refers to the same one.

  • Ben Denton

    Why force his hand on one issue? Would you disregard his goodness and love based on one issue? He hasn’t required you to respond to questions about orphans or pacifism, Abortion is irrelevant to this discussion, and to bring it up comes across as you just wanting to support your disapproval of someone without any real reason to support it. I am sorry for you that you have such a desire to be angry, but it is unfounded in this instance. Try choosing to celebrate the good instead of focusing on what you disagree with, you will probably find yourself happier.

  • Christopher Ryan Cole

    It’s astounding to me that you all believe God and Allah are the same. Let’s just assume for a moment that Muhammad was not an illiterate bloodthirsty shepherd and actually heard God speak to him directly. Is God going to say to him “Yeah, that guy that said He was my Son, died to take away sin, give people assurance of salvation and redemption, and all that talk about the coming of the Kingdom of God, yeah He was just an impostor. He really screwed up My message.” Allah IS NOT THE SAME as the God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob. The One True God gives us assurance of salvation and gives our lives meaning and purpose. Allah has no son, does not interact with humanity on a personal level, does not offer assurance of salvation. And, this is the biggest reason why God is not Allah, a Muslim by their own admission will say that even had Muhammad not received the Koran, the message would have gone out. Christianity cannot say that because it is not just about the message of Jesus, it’s about the Person of Jesus, the very Son of God, fully and completely God. Allah IS NOT God and he never was.

  • Matt Hannan

    All that education wasted on a heretic. The fact that you studied theology at a masters level and yet you reject Scriptural authority and inerrancy is mind boggling. Also claiming that ancient Hebrew actions somehow validate modern day Islam is a childish argument at best. If you cant tell the difference between the motivations of God and Allah, go back to Sunday school.

  • La Kim

    Damn it! When WILL they create a sarcasm font??!? :)

  • La Kim

    Also: well played, sir. Well played.

  • Herm

    Tell me Ike, what fate is worse than eternal death, death forever? Oh, and where do you get this fact, or is it theory?

  • Herm

    … and that you read this article at such a low level of comprehension it is truly mind boggling that you can give any authority to scripture.

  • blusprite

    If anyone claims that Jesus of the New Testament is completely different than Yahweh in the Old Testament, I’d like to remind them what Revelation 19 says Jesus will do upon His return:

    “11 And I saw Heaven opened. And behold, a white horse! And He sitting on him was called Faithful and True. And in righteousness He judges and makes war.12 And His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head many crowns. And He had a name written, one that no one knew except Himself.13 And He had been clothed in a garment dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God.14 And the armies in Heaven followed Him on white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.15 And out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, so that with it He should strike the nations. And He will shepherd them with a rod of iron. And He treads the winepress of the wine of the anger and of the wrath of Almighty God.16 And He has on His garment, and on His thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.”

    This will be the greatest mass killing of all time. If we go down the road of questioning the Old Testament inerrancy because we feel it’s morally objectionable, we might as well decide that Revelation is just some parable. Do you believe that Jesus will return to judge the living and the dead? Because if you do, you’ll have to accept that He will destroy all who have not accepted Him as their Savior and King.

  • Tim

    Literalism strikes again. You do realise this is symbolic and metaphorical, right? Oh, of course not, or you wouldn’t have just written this…

  • blusprite

    Of course it’s metaphorical. There won’t be a literal winepress. The whole picture might not be literal, for all we know. What’s the meaning of this metaphor, is that the wicked will be destroyed. Unless you deny that Jesus will return at all, perhaps that’s metaphorical, too, huh?

  • Ike

    There is no fate worse than eternal death, hence my post. If you know of one or have a better fact or theory as you call it, do share…

  • Tim

    Which shows your complete lack of understanding of the nature of the justice of the God who says “I desire mercy, not sacrifice”. We treat God as the God of Love and of Justice, which we define as revenge, putting the two in dualistic opposition. But God is not like that. God’s Justice flows from his love and mercy, and is not like our human opinion of retaliatory justice at all. If it were, then everyone involved in the crucifixion would’ve been toast on the spot. But Jesus came precisely to show that God is not like that. Sin is no small matter indeed, which is why Jesus completely crushed its power once and for all at the cross, even verbally forgiving on the spot the people that put him there.

    The fact is that particularly in the OT, the scriptures contain a lot of human opinion/ perception on the nature and character of God, as well as some true insights into the real nature of God.

  • seashell

    What I honestly don’t get (as a mostly lackadaisical atheist), is how anyone can find this type of Christianity? religion? fundamentalism? (whatever it’s called) attractive enough to spend much of their lives in deep devotion to it. “Greatest mass killing of all time” is somehow redeeming but ISIS is terrorist scary and not correct. But I guess leaving out the winepress might make a difference?

  • Jim Valley

    You seem to have missed the point by a country mile.

  • Tim

    The question is, in what manner were/ are the wicked “destroyed”?. Most of Revelation is about what happened around AD70, some of which carried forward from there. A few bits of Revelation have yet to be fulfilled completely, but the vast majority of it is not about something that happens far in the future as many people mistakenly think. Besides which; where in what you quoted from Revelation is the “Greatest mass killing of all time”?

  • Tim

    “The modern assertion of “biblical inerrancy” basically boils down to the claim by certain (often/ usually white) Christians that “The Bible says what we say it says, and nothing else, and so you must listen to us as though we were God.”

  • blusprite

    The winepress is the metaphorical part. The killing is literal, no matter the form or manner, and it’s performed by God himself, not Christians. So if there’s no God, you should be pretty much safe. Christians have other obligations, not to kill people.

  • blusprite

    Do I really need to paste the remaining verses of the chapter?

    “17 And I saw one angel standing in the sun. And he cried with a great voice, saying to all the birds that fly in mid-heaven, Come and gather together to the supper of the great God,18 so that you may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of commanders, and the flesh of strong ones, and the flesh of horses, and those sitting on them, and the flesh of all, both free and slave, both small and great.19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth and their armies, being gathered to make war against Him who sat on the horse, and against His army.20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet doing signs before it, (by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast), and those who had worshiped his image. The two were thrown alive into the Lake of Fire burning with brimstone.21 And the rest were slain by the sword of Him who sat on the horse, it proceeding out of His mouth. And all the birds were filled from their flesh.”

    So, here’s the “Greatest mass killing of all time”

    Some of Revelation may be about what happened around AD 70 but Revelation is a prophetic, not historical book. The very first verse of chapter 1 says this: “A Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave to Him to declare to His servants things which must shortly come to pass.” Not things which already happened. The book itself was written after AD 70 , not before.

    As for the manner the wicked will be destroyed, how is this the most important question?

  • “Shortly” come to pass– 2,000 plus years later isn’t “shortly.”

  • jekylldoc

    Yes, George, it is metaphorical. Jesus is alive. We are the body of Christ. That is all you know on earth, and all you need to know.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Really??? Thats your theology? You use human/earth time for the creator of the universes time?

  • jekylldoc

    Brilliant. Each war is the war to end wars, or at least to end injustice. On both sides. You would think people would catch on, but that would be out of character.

  • jekylldoc

    If you listen carefully, you can hear me retching on the other side of the Atlantic. Do you even have a clue why the rest of the world often thinks of America as a rogue elephant?

  • Hey, genius, Revelation can be about the destruction of Jerusalem and still be prophecy to the original audience. It just wouldn’t be prophecy to us. Just like Isaiah talking about the destruction of Edom. At the time it was written, it was prophecy.

    Also, the wicked are “slain” by a sword coming from Jesus’ mouth. In order for your view to work, Jesus will have to be swinging a sword around in his mouth, which seems both unlikely and inefficient.

    What makes more sense is that the sword coming from Jesus’ mouth is His word, which you’ll recall is referred to as a sword a time or two in other passages.

  • Yes, it makes way more sense that John would communicate in terms that have no referent to how we use language.

  • Great argumentation.

  • Jesus came to save Israel from the consequences of their disobedience to their covenant. The Gospels are very clear about that.

  • Borrowing a suggestion from Fred Clark, I read the Affirmations and Denials section by replacing the phrase “We deny” with “Because it really seems as if.” I think that makes a lot more sense of the document.

  • “You were even commanded to stone anyone to death who charged interest on a loan.”

    …Can we bring this one back? It seems like it would solve a lot of problems…

  • blusprite

    Dear “genius” Phil. You do realize that Revelation was written AFTER the destruction of Jerusalem, don’t you? Then it cannot be prophecy to the original audience, because to the original audience it would have been an event in the past, not the future. Also, if you cared to read what I’ve said, instead of jumping in with your quick, but not very well thought comment, you’d have seen that I don’t claim that the picture is literal. Therefore don’t use your straw man arguments on me, please. Jesus will not have a sword swinging around his mouth, but the people will be destroyed, that’s the point. The sword itself is a symbol for God’s word.

  • blusprite

    Benjamin, you’ve studied theology, from what I see in your bio. Really, do you mean to tell me that because Jesus hasn’t returned for nearly (not plus! check your math) 2000 years, it means the verse necessarily points to an event in the past from the time of writing of the book, rather than a future event, when it clearly says “things which must shortly come to pass” and in verse 3 “for the time is near”? What about Revelation 22:20″He who testifies these things says, Yes, I am coming quickly, Amen. Yes, come, Lord Jesus.” Do 2000 years seem like “quickly” to you, or do you perhaps forget II Peter 3:7-12 “7 But the present heavens and the earth being kept in store by the same word, are being kept for fire until the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.
    8 But, beloved, let not this one thing be hidden from you, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord is not slow concerning His promise, as some count slowness, but is long-suffering toward us, not willing that any of us should perish, but that all of us should come to repentance.10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a rushing noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat. And the earth and the works in it will be burned up. 11 Then, all these things being about to be dissolved, what sort ought you to be in holy behavior and godliness,12 looking for and rushing the coming of the Day of God, on account of which theheavens, being on fire, will melt away, and the elements will melt, burning with heat?”

    Or this also doesn’t sound very nice and humane, not very Jesus-like, so we should revise the New Testament inerrancy as well.

  • David Cohen

    The sword from the mouth of Jesus is his Word. It is not a weapon in the physical sense but the spiritual sense. Also notice that Jesus’ robe is dipped in blood before the battle begins. That is because the blood is his own.

    The purpose of that passage is to illustrate the difference between the power of the Roman state and the power of Christ. The Empire’s power relied on physical weapons and the slaughter of others. The power of Christ relied on truth and self-sacrifice. Thus the power of Christ is shown to be not only greater than the power of the Empire but completely different in its nature.

  • blusprite

    Would you please comment on the following passage from the New Testament in light of what you said about God’s justice and mercy:

    II Peter 3:7-12 “7 But the present heavens and the earth being kept in store by the same word, are being kept for fire until the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men. 8 But, beloved, let not this one thing be hidden from you, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord is not slow concerning His promise, as some count slowness, but is long-suffering toward us, not willing that any of us should perish, but that all of us should come to repentance.10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a rushing noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat. And the earth and the works in it will be burned up. 11 Then, all these things being about to be dissolved, what sort ought you to be in holy behavior and godliness,12 looking for and rushing the coming of the Day of God, on account of which theheavens, being on fire, will melt away, and the elements will melt, burning with heat?”

  • Realist1234

    I dont think its true that the vast majority of Revelation is about AD70 and the fall of Jerusalem, though of course it is partly about that.

  • Realist1234

    From God’s perspective, ‘shortly’ could easily mean ‘000s of years. It is only because us humans lead such ‘short’ lives that we tend to automatically interpret words in a particular way. As for your main view, I have sympathy with it, but the main problem is if you disregard such passages as genuinely inspired (ie God could not have told them to do that), I would suggest it then becomes very difficult to know what parts are inspired or ‘true’. Indeed, history then varies depending on personal views on morality etc. Its a difficult subject, and personally I tend not to accept ‘inerrancy’ but rather ‘reliably true’. Ive been debating with some atheists on another blog who uphold the belief that Jesus didnt even exist and who dismiss even extra-biblical references to Him. I blame Bart Ehrman!

  • Tim

    It’s clear that you don’t think that’s what most of it is about. Most people don’t, because most people have been taught to see it another way. It is however, the explanation that makes the most sense when it’s studied out. Dispensational futurism is a pretty new kid on the block though, and it’s a highly suspect way to look at scripture, even though it’s the most popular way to read it in modern American Christianity.

  • Vernon

    I talked with an acquaintance who is a sear gent in the military about this ordeal yesterday, He said this immigrant issue is the reason he is locked and loaded, he has his tactical guns ready for what he said is the inevitable explosion of islamic violence in America. Dont be an apologist for the culture of violence they have that everyday americans escape. crime has steadilly dropped over the last 40 years in america, and now its on the rise because of media hate baiting. standing against violent sharia law is something that good natured loving people do. and its ludicrous to blame the crimes of the catholic church on non catholic christians

  • Herm

    Well, now isn’t that really GOOD NEWS (gospel)? I would have to guess you don’t know Jesus as your only Teacher, Instructor and Lord. Perhaps if we’re going to discuss your theory it would help if you went back one article: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/formerlyfundie/the-road-to-death-camps-is-paved-with-fear-based-rhetoric/

    Well, at least I see you have two religious supporters who follow the same fear based rhetoric. Because you left me with nothing to work from I have to assume some things based on friends and congregations seemingly spouting the very same rhetoric as you have been supported in doing so, the very same, word for word (???).

    In the book they shared there is related a fate we can be sure is a worse fate right here on earth. The one Jesus Christ suffered and agonized to the end right before the eyes of witnesses we can pretty well trust. What have you and your friends witnessed or heard of from first hand witnesses you can trust?

    Do you want to know of a pretty bad fate we all can relate to that Jesus insists His students do before even beginning their discipleship with Him? Try this, it works;

    “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.” Luke 14:26-27

    That does not qualify as a warm a fuzzy reward for the righteousness you are ignorantly selling but thousands upon thousands of early disciples of Christ accepted wholeheartedly.

    The real Gospel is that in Jesus and Jesus in you today you don’t have to do anything. The fruit from the Spirit growing in you will produce, guaranteed, eternal life you can then inherit as an official child of God right now, right here, today.

    If you would like to discuss this further with me I truly wish you would. If you want to discuss this directly with Jesus you can if all alone in all humility, with only the facts you really know as a little child, open your hardened heart to the Spirit of Truth to be cleansed (baptized).

    I don’t give a damn about heaven or hell because I’m not privy to anything outside of our shared playpen graced us by my adopted Father in Heaven. My Father and Brother teach me as I am ready and right at this moment I am going to share what They just shared with me.

    The bodies that house each of our spirits in the image of God (heart, soul and mind) has two, one or none eyes looking only forward. If while climbing this cliff to escape this more expansive garden prison, also, (like the Garden of Eden) we turn to look down we will surely fall, because our whole body follows our eyes. If we continue to look up while tuned inside ourselves listening to the Guide in our heart and mind we can grasp the Hand of other children of God before us to be supported to the final eternal and infinite empire of God as one totally and forever in, with and relating to God. If you know where to look that too was alluded to in the Bible.

    I do love you Ike. All of God loves you Ike. I can only offer to share with you what I know to be true in my life as fact, not theory. God has never desired that Their creation in Their image has to pass some theological test or trudge through an endless cycle of rituals before coming to Them. God is not a fantasy but is real and you too are invited to actually be one in God as a sister or brother of Jesus. This I know as a first hand witness and recipient. I wish the same for you and your supporters.

    This worked for inmates I knew in Folsom prison and it can sure work for you to free your soul as your carnal body remains behind the bars of our crib. Get alone and in all and utter humility open your heart and invite Him in, now.

  • Herm

    Oh, that is really scary, thank you for that!

    Tit for tat, would you consider yourself of the ungodly because you clearly do not know God with the Spirit of Truth actively counselling in your heart and mind? A direct relationship with God is no more earned than was your relationship with your carnal parents, it is either accepted or rejected according to your free will in Their image.

    I have some Good News for you if you continue to reject the Holy Spirit into your heart and mind. The eternal fire will virtually consume mortals to where all dead mortals know nothing. Our spirits in the image of God are not developed enough to sense without our physical bodies. The immortals are not my concern. Gospel for you though!!!

    God is not to be feared except when you are not in God.

  • Herm

    Dear genius George. It is very clear right from the beginning of Revelations that it is only a letter to seven existing churches. It is written in a code those disciples with the Holy Spirit in their hearts and minds would comprehend and the Romans would not. We stole it for ourselves during the compilations of our Bible. All that is written in Revelations has come, long ago, to pass. The Counselor can interpret it better for you directly than the best of your theologians on the outside looking in. He knows the code for He inspired it.

    The sword comes from the mouth of Jesus. It could come from your mouth if you were one with Jesus by way of the Holy Spirit in your heart and mind.

    Love you and I would die for you.

  • How will God’s word physically kill people?

    And a late date for Revelation is pretty heavily disputed.

  • blusprite

    Herm, with all due respect, I’d like to hear Tim’s opinion. I’m not debating with you.

  • blusprite

    Again, dear Herm, I’d like to ask you to refrain from intruding in other people’s debate, as a basic form of politeness. Moreover, I have in no way provoked you and don’t deserve your ironic attitude, which doesn’t match your claim of high level of spirituality, so please spare me the pretense.

  • blusprite

    How did God physically kill Herod in Acts 12:23 or in II Samuel 6:7, or in Genesis 38:7?

    And the late date is disputed precisely because it doesn’t fit the claim that it refers to the destruction of Jerusalem.

  • Herm

    Then, please, respect the fact that your words count, life and death, and this isn’t a competitive debate where you win and Tim loses. Shine me on if you will but respect most that others really do count more than just your win. God is more real and effective in love than we are!

  • Herm

    George, this is a public forum and yes your destructive words provoked me. You put them out there for all to learn from. You resist the Lord I claim to know and call me the pretender. Ask Him before you continue to try to win your point and not point to Him!

  • blusprite

    How is citing a passage from the Scripture disrespecting the fact that my words count?

  • Not by His word. He just struck them down. How will God’s word in Christ and/or the proclamation of God’s word physically kill people?

    That is not the only reason why the date is disputed. If you want me to point out articles, I can, but so can you. You seem like a sharp guy. There are plenty of reasons to consider an earlier date for Revelation than deciding that it must be about AD 70.

    But even if it were written in the 90s, you’d agree that Revelation looks back on past events as well, right? Like the birth of Jesus?

  • blusprite

    Herm, please refrain from qualifying my words and claiming that I resist the Lord. If you disagree with my opinions, you’re welcome to show from the Scripture how and why I’m wrong. Otherwise, you’re just promoting yourself.

  • Herm

    “If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.” John 14:15-21

    ““When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father—the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father—he will testify about me. And you also must testify, for you have been with me from the beginning.” John 15:26-27

    “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.” John 16:12-15

    “John, To the seven churches in the province of Asia: Grace and peace to you from him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father—to him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen.” Revelation 1:4-6

    George, this is real and those are valid scripture. The Spirit of Truth was sent nearly 2,000 years ago. Please, accept Him before you continue to lead others away from Him which I am certain you would not have others doing to you.

  • Herm

    Because you are leading others away from the true word of God, the Holy Spirit who can counsel all for all passages from scripture in context. You are pointing to the Bible as the last word with small snippets of scripture when Jesus pointed to the scripture in His ministry on earth as pointing to Him. When you use scripture to point to your point you are not pointing to Him.

    Does this make any sense with what you know of scripture?

  • seashell

    This is great, Herm. It makes sense to me and I know nothing of scripture. But I love the point you’re making.

  • Herm

    “catholic” means universal. Most Christians worshiping on the first day of the week in a church building with an ornate sanctuary containing pews, a pulpit, a cross, and an alter are an extension from the Roman Catholic Church tradition, dogma, ritual and theology. We are all concerned and vigilant with the pervasive hate of others hating others. Those who arm their swords will no more prevail than the mightiest of Rome prevailed. Those who carry their crosses will prevail as Jesus has prevailed in spite of the gross lack of love and empathy for our enemies. Good natured , loving people of others stand up against intolerance for all others as one mankind, male and female in the image of God, and not just their little piece of mankind who they know intimately to be empathetic of. Those others, all others of mankind, are who Jesus stood up on His cross for. He has continued to call for His students to stand up on their crosses for the same reason. Relationship with all inclusive in God will win this battle but no religion and or nation can for each is by their nature concerned only with their exclusive fragment of mankind to win.

  • blusprite

    But I am pointing to Him – Him returning in glory as a King, to judge the living and the dead. It is you who is twisting both my words and the Scripture, posing as if the Holy Spirit is speaking directly through your mouth and whoever disagrees with you is ungodly and resists the Lord. I have nothing more to say to you, so if Tim replies, I’ll post back.

  • Herm

    Thank you, seashell. We all need each other’s encouragement. Truly I love your support. None of us need scripture but we all need the Spirit of God.

  • Herm

    He is here, right now! That is Who I am pointing to! See the difference?

  • blusprite

    He who is here right now is the same that will return, so we’re pointing to the same Lord. Calm down.

  • blusprite

    None of us needs scripture? Thank God apostle Paul didn’t think so. Why would God give us scripture if we don’t need it??

  • Bill

    Herm,

    Your posts are outstanding. Someday it would be really great to meet you in person.

    I think I see your point, that relationships are dynamic and ever growing and changing. I never really considered the same is equally true with our relationship with God through Jesus. Something I will have to think about for a while to really grasp the full implications.

    Love in Christ,

    Bill

  • Vernon

    Thats the most erroneous thing you can ever say about christianity, of the caotholic off spring, lutherian and protestant count among the very few, american christianity doesnt uphold vatican anything, for the most part they uphold judaism. And mormonism doesnt uphold any other christian sect. it may be your opinion, but it isnt fact, the fact is americans are quite aware of the massive differences between catholicism and american christianity. and most christian americans i know simply do not support roman catholic ideas. The only common denominator is the bible which was forcibly altered to be a dumbing down tool by constantine.

  • Vernon

    and you can throw the old testament out entirely because its primarily ripped off ideologies from sumeria.

  • Herm

    “the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” John 14:17-18

    “On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.” John 14:20

    Oh dear God thank you!!!

    I will step out of quoting scripture now only because it would absorb too much valuable time for you, or those reading this, to concentrate.

    Throughout the four Gospels Jesus and the inspired writers have directed us to a one in one relationship as students only of Jesus, right now, and knowing the heart and mind of all of God as children of God through the Holy Spirit in our hearts and minds right here, right now, on this earth. God is spiritual because God does not need the carnal to communicate through but does our hearts and minds. Jesus Son of Man/Son of God still required the “Dove” to abide in His heart and mind on earth before the Father could recognize Him as His only begotten Son. We only need the same, the Spirit of Truth, to relate in kind with our Father and our teaching Brother. Jesus, as of mankind, was raised in the scripture of the day to point to this relationship and ignored all other scripture.

    I could go on and He could go on even further but my time is up for this segment.

    Love you!!!

  • Herm

    We need the same living word of God Paul knew not second hand letters Paul wrote.

  • Nimblewill

    From Greg Boyd’s Random Reflections blog on Jasques Ellul’s “The Subversion of Christianity.”

    * VIOLENCE. Non-violence never seems practical, so it was among the
    things that needed to go. (Here Ellul curiously argues that the example
    of Islam was the main influence in making Christianity a violent
    religion, see Chapter V).

    http://gregboyd.blogspot.com/2008/01/subversion-of-christianity.html

  • Herm

    Oh dear, dear Bill thank you so much for your support. Truly I am simply a very little virtually ignorant little child of God. I am nothing and not to be followed. There is one focal point from whom we can all learn equally loved.

    Love IN Christ,

    Herm

  • RuthAnne Blach

    I was standing where you are about 40 years ago. but i was lucky.. My dad was a scholar and had always maintained against our church that the bible CONTAINS the word of GOD but also of man and Man is a violent vicious creature. One of my treasured gifts and texts is the book MisQuoting Jesus,and another the Hierarchy of Hell, and a third, Worlds in Collision. they all examine this in their own special ways.

  • Herm

    Vernon, you mean well I am pretty sure. None of the vestiges in our churches mentioned were prevalent before Constantine. Buildings did not house churches except the homes and caves surrounding the hearts and minds of Jesus’ disciples within which the High Priest was leading worship. As true children of God, cleansed by the Holy Spirit, they worshiped their Father, His begotten Son, and all their siblings of Jesus which included each of them.

    I do not throw out the Old Testament because it points to Jesus as the Lamb and Messiah. I do not throw out the New Testament because it points to the Spirit of Truth by whom I learn from the only Teacher for disciples of Christ.

    Writers of mankind plagiarize in everything they pen for that is how language grows from one to another. The language of God is spiritual and is readily understood in our spiritual hearts and minds in the image of God. Our Father absolutely loves it when we little children rip off His Truth to share with another. Truth available to the least of our scholars in mankind.

    Love you.

  • blusprite

    Just go ahead and say you reject Sola Scriptura, so at least your position is clear.

  • “Ive been debating with some atheists on another blog who uphold the belief that Jesus didnt even exist and who dismiss even extra-biblical references to Him. I blame Bart Ehrman!”

    I’m sure you could attempt to blame Ehrman for a number of things, but disbelief in the existence of a historical Jesus is not one of them. He wrote a book about it.

    http://www.amazon.com/Did-Jesus-Exist-Historical-Argument/dp/0062206443/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1443206345&sr=8-1&keywords=did+jesus+exist

    Despite the provocative title, he actually comes out in support of the scholarly consensus that there was a historical Jesus – as the subtitle suggests. This was much to the consternation of anti-theist atheists. It seems to me that it adds more to his credibility as a scholar that he was willing to take the heat by attempting to debunk the mythicists (many of who are probably readers of his).

    Also, it isn’t as though Ehrman is making up the information in his books – it’s information most scholars already know about. The fact is conservative evangelicals don’t like him because his popular books cast doubt on their biblical model of inerrancy among the laity and the public in general. But they really ought to consider that their model might be unsustainable. Don’t shoot the messenger.

    Ehrman is agnostic himself, but for reasons he outlines in his book God’s Problem – *not* for reasons to do with his scholarship. His work (and the work of a majority of biblical scholars, textual critics, etc.) is actually compatible with faith – just not fundamentalism.

  • blusprite

    Herm, the things you write are wonderful and I agree with everything. I just failed to see on which point exactly you disagree with me, because instead of arguments, you threw at me accusations. You keep speaking of the Spirit as if you’re the only person who has accepted Him and who knows Him personally and intimately and that this relieves you of the obligation to adhere to the whole Scripture, not only the passages about the Spirit. Some argumentation would have been nice, but oh well. I could turn things around and give you some of your own treatment, but I don’t see the point. Love is not a word, it’s how you treat people. When words and actions are different, it’s hypocrisy.

  • Herm

    “Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”” Matthew 28:18-20

    If Jesus is with you with ALL authority in heaven and earth how can you give any more than His authority to parchment? What is left beyond His authority shared immediately upon need with all in Him by Way of the Spirit of Truth?

  • blusprite

    Perhaps the same way as Paul describes Christ’s return in II Thess 2:8 “And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the breath of His mouth and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming,”

    The date may be disputed, but that’s exactly the problem. It’s not indisputably an early date, so this cannot be our sole doctrinal cornerstone. The motif of Jesus coming to destroy the wicked men and then judge all who ever lived is found repeatedly through the Bible, so it doesn’t depend on the date of the writing of Revelation.

    So yes, Revelation looks back on past events, if you refer to chapter 12. This past event though is not the focus of the vision shown to John. It’s as if we look back in time in order to understand whom are we seeing and then we look back to the future as the vision progresses further.

  • blusprite

    You wouldn’t know that Jesus said that if not for this “parchment”. And the authority of the “parchment” comes from the fact that it’s inspired by the Spirit, Whom you claim to know and serve. The parchment itself has no authority, the divinely inspired words do, however. It’s God’s Word.

  • “Perhaps ideologies and societies mature like people do.”

    This is not that silly at all. However I do think how a religion manifests itself has less to do with the amount of time a religion has existed, and more to do with the cultural pressures on it at any given point. After all, the climate in Andalucia in medieval Spain under Muslim rule was, for a period, comparably tolerant than the rest of Christian Europe. Most humans are at least able to learn lessons throughout life and make amends for foolish behavior in their youth, but it seems religions must continually learn the same lessons over and over.

    The wellspring of history can’t teach us when we don’t believe it applies to us. And this is why religious sects that claim to have it all together, that claim absolute certainty, are the most dangerous. They believe their doctrine or prophet has given them the key to immunity from the mistakes of the past, and it’s precisely what leads them into trouble. But there is no escape pod from the ship of history.

    It is why I worry so much about Christian memory, especially American Christian memory. It’s not just what we forget, it’s what we remember wrongly and omit.

  • Herm

    Love is how you care for people, if for yours how you love yours and if the people are others it is how you love others all for their constructive good (redundant intentionally).

    I have no need at all to adhere to scraps of paper that reflect a vague image of mankind’s relationship with an infinite and eternal spiritual God, in pieces or in whole. If the four canonized Gospels contained all that was to be literally adhered to during the ministry of Jesus just how large would each one be? What written by mankind’s hand, no matter how or by who inspired, does not contain errors and intentional/unintentional misdirections? I am pointing only in the direction of the Spirit who does not have errors or any form of misdirection using the Bible you appear to worship before Him.

    There are those reading this right now who know and share purely in the Spirit of God as little children of God. We can use the Bible or any other form of human communication to share and highlight the Spirit within us who can teach us as Jesus. Why would we look back 5,775 years when we have eternity to look forward to?

    I know, you think I am crazy and since I can honestly say that I might not be (catch 22). I can end this comment here with the fact that most teachers of the law, the law derived purely from scripture, thought Jesus was so crazy that He threatened their comforting source that gave them authority. Jesus remains crucified by all who give any authority to scripture before our Lord. Jesus in actuality rebuilt the temple in three days and lives in the hearts and minds of His brothers and sisters as one. I long ago accepted Him as my only Teacher but did not until 20 years ago become one in Him and He in me. By your fruit you may have accepted Him by the water but not by the cleansing of the Spirit for you have yet to know you are in Him and He’s in you.

  • Herm

    Jesus is the Word. The Holy Spirit is in Jesus and Jesus is in the Holy Spirit so the Word is the Spirit of Truth. The Holy Spirit is in the hearts and minds of the little children of God so there, also, is the word of God. These are inspired words of God equally as is in the Bible. Yet you, of hardened heart, misplace your full and complete allegiance to those letters in the Bible and not in the Spirit it speaks to.

  • I agree, but obviously II Thess 2:8 doesn’t mean that Jesus is going to breathe on the lawless one to kill him, like a dragon or something.

    I agree the date of Revelation cannot be the primary basis for our hermeneutic. I think the primary basis for our hermeneutic should be other Jewish apocalyptic literature which is a little more forthcoming in its explanations than John was. However, there is virtually no reference to Jesus judging “all who ever lived.” There is definitely a motif of Jesus destroying wickedness, but obviously there is no need to project that into the distant future nor a historical warrant for doing so.

    Your interpretation of chapter 12 is one way to look at it, although the text doesn’t say that chapter 12 is a look backwards in what is otherwise a continuous flow to the future. In order for that interpretation to work, John would have to – without any kind of textual transitions or indicators – halt his prophecy of the distant future, go back to his own past, and then flip back to the distant future, once again with no textual indicators or transition.

    I think the textual clues make it more likely that we are looking at a series of visions John pieced together over time than one big long continuous vision (how you have a continuous vision of a thousand year reign is beyond me), which would make Revelation more in the line of OT prophets and their apocalyptics, which John borrows from heavily for his imagery.

  • hannes

    beginning of Revelation, or Revelation’s beginning, but not beginning of Revelations. Not plural. had to be corrected myself once. I think it is material in that it was The Revelation of Jesus Christ.

  • TeDeumLaudamus

    There is, however, another option that you have not included: that of societal, spiritual evolution and growth that compels a people to employ other, more humane means of maintaining domestic social order and of dealing with recalcitrant nations.

    Several millenia on, I think we modern humans generally–but by no means all–have turned a corner on having to be bashed over the head and led around like cattle in order to seek and follow the will of God. Wouldn’t you agree?

    That allows both the modern moral outrage and condemnation of savagery perpetrated in the name of religion and does not challenge biblical inerrancy, a belief that does not fetter my thoughts in the least.

  • Herm

    We are learning together, thank you!

    “The revelation from Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John,”
    Revelation 1:1

    I do find the word “from” more apropos to the spirit of the letter than “of” though both could convey the source.

    Thank you, again.

  • Herm

    How many nuclear weapons have we evolved from to return to more productive plowshares? Just because our club is exponentially more massive does not mean we have grown to not continue to intimidate others to seek and follow the will of the God with the mantra “mine’s bigger than yours, nanna, nanna, nanna!”

  • Ike

    Unfortunately, you did not complete the verses in context, you just said ‘I desire mercy not sacrifice’, so I will:

    Therefore, I have hewn them in pieces by [the words of] the prophets;
    I have slain them by the words of My mouth;
    My judgments [pronounced upon them by the prophets] are like the light that shines forth [obvious to all].
    6
    For I desire and delight in [steadfast] loyalty [faithfulness in the covenant relationship], rather than sacrifice,
    And in the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.
    7
    But they, like Adam, have transgressed the covenant;
    There they have dealt treacherously against Me.. Hosea 6:5-7 Amplified

    What Jesus said in the Gospel according to Matthew:

    But when Jesus heard this, He said, “Those who are healthy have no need for a physician, but [only] those who are sick. 13 Go and learn what this [Scripture] means: ‘I desire compassion [for those in distress], and not [animal] sacrifice,’ for I did not come to call [to repentance] the [self-proclaimed] righteous [who see no need to change], but sinners [those who recognize their sin and actively seek forgiveness].” – Matt 9:12,13 Amplified

    or in the KJV:

    But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.

    13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to
    repentance. – Matt9:12,13

    Finally, in Matthew 12, where Yahshua was speaking to the Pharisees about their insistence on paying lip service to the Sabbath observation and refusing to be compassionate on the Sabbath:

    But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple.

    7 But if ye had known what this meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless.

    8 For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day. – Matthew 12:6-8

    It is critically important not to take scripture out of context, otherwise the message is lost or becomes garbled. These are the exact tactics that satan uses. Two good examples are in the Garden of Eden with Eve and when satan was tempting Yahshua. satan was giving incomplete, devious messages. You have just willfully or unwillfully, unknowingly done the same. Hopefully, it is the latter. Either way, it is dangerous. The complete Gospel message has come about because God is both the God of Love and the God of Justice. The lake of fire mentioned in Revelation is real, and has been created by God for a reason. Also, for you to say that in the NT and OT ‘the scriptures contain a lot of human opinion/ perception on the nature
    and character of God, as well as some true insights into the real nature
    of God.’ is speculative, with absolutely nothing to back your assertion up, and is quite frankly dangerous, because it is doing exactly what satan does – questioning and sowing doubt about what God has said through people inspired by Him to write Scripture.

  • Herm

    “* VIOLENCE. Non-violence never seems practical, so it was among the things that needed to go. (Here Ellul curiously argues that the example of Islam was the main influence in making Christianity a violent religion, see Chapter V).”

    This is a very curious argument as Christianity historically picked up the patronage and the sword in 325 CE under Constantine and Muhammad (the originating prophet of Islam) wasn’t born until 570 CE. We know Constantine spread Christian violence just after 325 CE because that is when the cross began to appear on all his soldier’s armor, shields and swords.

  • Ike

    Not just Israel, but all humankind. This has been the consistent message from Genesis to Revelation, not just the Gospels. The Good News actually commenced from when God Himself prophesised the ministry, sacrifice and resurrection of Yahshua in Genesis.

  • Ike

    With respect Herm, you know nothing about me. I left the Catholic Church and all my relatives behind, including my dear mother to follow the authentic Yahshua. Thank God both my parents accepted Him as their Lord and Saviour before they passed into His Glory. However, that is by the by, the Bible is clear about what Yahshua said – What I say to you in the dark (privately), tell in the light (publicly); and what you hear whispered in your ear, proclaim from the housetops [to many people]. 28 Do
    not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; but
    rather be afraid of Him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. – Matthew 10:27,28 Amplified. Also –
    The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction… Proverbs 1:7 KJV. What was that you said about ‘fear based rhetoric’ again?

  • Herm

    Ike, I do respect your service and your discipline in the name of our Lord Yahushua. You shared scripture that is misleading without the lead in to know why to fear the Father more than these:

    ““I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. Be on your guard; you will be handed over to the local councils and be flogged in the synagogues. On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” Matthew 10:16-20

    Your verse regarding who to fear is clarified further when we read that we’re not to be afraid of our Father according to what follows:

    “So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” Matthew 10:31

    and same in the Gospel of Luke:

    “Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” Luke 12:7

    The admonition of Solomon relative to fear …

    The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:7

    … is pretty well countered in …

    But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23

    … along with …

    Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them. Matthew 7:20

    … unless you can be joyful and peaceful in the presence of God who you are in dreadful fear of.

    You do know that the Gospel we are commissioned as Jesus’ disciples to share with the world is meant to be Good News don’t you?

    I explained that we do no good for anyone by planting seeds by way of fear based rhetoric most especially for something like hell and heaven we cannot know because their reality is much beyond our capabilities to understand from the physical laws we share to communicate through. The fact is my Teacher has made it very clear to my mind and heart that the second death for mortals is one by which they virtually know nothing for the rest of eternity. I don’t know about the immortals and I really don’t care because that’s way above my paygrade and capability to comprehend as a budding little child of God. Yes our carnal bodies will be completely consumed in an eternally cleansing fire but our spirit (heart, soul and mind) is too immature spiritually to communicate or even be aware without of carnal bodies.

    Jesus wishes His disciples nothing but peace then and now. We have the Spirit of Truth available to us at all times, for nearly 2,000 years now, to be in God and God in us as Their children today right here on this earth. That’s the Good News.

    Thanks for whatever respect you feel I am due. I do not see myself as anything more than an adorable (just kidding) little child of God (no kidding).

    Love you!

  • TeDeumLaudamus

    That’s a pretty jaded view of things, IMO. Americans have a history of being pretty generous and accommodating when they aren’t being threatened or invaded, and even when they are. If your take on this had any validity, Iran would not have had sanctions for the past few decades; it would have been blasted to dust. Japan would still be in ruins as would Germany and Italy.

    Also, consider initiatives like the Peace Corp and the incredible advance in civilization brought about all over the world by Christian missionaries of all kinds, who built schools and hospitals and taught people living in the direst of straits how to become self-sufficient. Countless Americans among untold numbers of others have given their very lives for the sake of strangers, a reality that continues today all over the world.

    If you don’t think there is evidence of societal and spiritual evolution, but rather just the natural outcome of having acquired better weapons of war, I don’t believe you are looking at but a thin sliver of reality.

  • Herm

    Just a quick reply. I believe if you check every great invading army throughout recorded history has attempted to rebuild their conquests. Per capita the numbers work out that there has always been the balance of people who would reach out to help another and those totally self-indulgent who would take from another. In the USA in the 50’s we went from a more social concern for all the people and built a middle class wealthy enough to to build our economy by investing and purchasing to a point where the majority of the nation’s wealth is now off shore so that 1% of can keep from paying taxes and the middle class is less than half. I wish I could say I am jaded but I have been actively watching the liberal rise and the conservative fall. The last straw for thinking we were thinking we were more generous than any nation ever was when we chose to invade Iraq. Any historian worth her salt could have told our neocons that we could not win anything where previous crusades had failed because they could not stabilize control of the region. All we managed to do was stir up a hornet’s nest when we deposed the only stabilizing power in the region, Saddam Hussein. I didn’t like him or his techniques but under his management that was the longest the Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds were not killing each other on a mass scale for many centuries. This is just off the top of my head. Much of the rest of our world hasn’t been any better.

    We will begin to make progress if and when we realize we’re one species dependent upon the health of each an every one of us. That’s why my side is now the empire of God with a passion to bring as many people out of fragmented national and religious allegiances into the Family of God as little children with a more benevolent Father than I was and I tried damn hard. Now I project on the conditions my grandchildren will have to live in that is so much less and falling than our once rising and prosperous nation shared with me.

    No, love of one another throughout the world has not increased on a per capita basis than it has been throughout all of recorded history. Check your bank account or your cloud and see if it’s been hacked yet for if it hasn’t been the odds are it will be. Other than nukes still armed and poised our technology has given thieves the opportunity to steal all our purchasing power from anywhere around the world. Are we better than ever?

    I’m very tired and it’s very late here so I may not be making the best of sense but I do not believe we’re improving to value ourselves, all ourselves. I do know there is One who does and there is where my allegiance is.

    Thank you for trying to make us seem better!

  • Investigator

    10% of the power produced in America was once produced from nuclear power plants using fuel from former Soviet nuclear weapons, weapons that may have formerly targeted America. Instead of burning up America in a flash of light, they were lighting up America.

  • Investigator

    “I believe if you check every great invading army throughout recorded history has attempted to rebuild their conquests.”

    WHAT?

    The Persian scholar Juvayni states that 50,000 Mongol soldiers were given the task of executing twenty-four Urgench citizens each, which would mean that 1.2 million people were killed. While this is almost certainly an exaggeration, the sacking of Urgench is considered one of the bloodiest massacres in human history.

    Then came the complete destruction of the city of Gurjang, south of the Aral Sea. Upon its surrender the Mongols broke the dams and flooded the city, then proceeded to execute the survivors.

    When the Romans destroyed Carthage, they sowed salt into the fields in hopes they would never produce grain.

    I could go on and on and on and on, but you get the point.

  • You have a very skewed and rosy view of American history. The slave trade that involved America was arguably worse than that we read in the Bible. The whites ethnically cleansed the indigenous population, violated just about every treaty they signed and were still beating tradition out of Native American children well into the last century.

    When elected governments in South America have not agreed with American policy the CIA have been active in removing them and putting in evil dictators who’ve happily murdered their own. The unrest in the Middle East is largely a result of imperialist intent by western nations including America.

    Israel is ethnically cleaning its Palestinian citizens as if the extinction of the Canaanites was part of the government remit. And the USA is supporting that government. It also see Saudi Arabia as a friend when their barbarism reprehensible.

    Lets not forget Vietnam, Jim Crow, Iraq, McCarthy, EJ Hoover, Cheney, Wounded Knee… This gets to the heart of Ben’s article. Solomon tells you there’s nothing new under the sun.

    The evolution of the human race isn’t upwards, it cyclical and all governments ten towards evil. That’s why we need to be critical of our own and sympathetic towards others. American Evangelical Christians consistently refuse to see the plank in their own collective eye yet are quick to point out the speck in that of others.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    I think that the very fact we read these stories as horrific demonstrates the utter triumph of Jesus in transforming the soul of mankind

    We now stand like Jesus when faced with the woman caught in adultery: knowing to the depths of our soul that God considers her life precious and loves her, whatever she has done, but confronting in plain black and white the words of the same God that says she must be brutally killed.
    Because the loving attitude of Jesus is so obviously the right one to us, what we miss when reading these stories of massacre is that the massacre is not for the times the surprising bit. Massacring the population on sacking a city was just what you did almost as a matter of course until fairly recent times.
    These instructions to kill were, as so much in the old testament, about a murderous obsession with purity.
    Because what else you did on sacking a city was loot.
    The ban was on taking Canaanite slaves, and property, and anything else Canaanite that might taint the people of God with Canaanite corruption. Canaanite cities had to be utterly purified with blood and fire for the pure people of God to live in. The fate of the Canaanites themselves was “collateral damage”.
    The point being that the command to massacre the Canaanites is the same as the command to stone the adulteress: both incomprehensible in a loving God and inevitably required to maintain the impossible standard of utter purity that aspiring to his perfection requires.
    So how does Jesus deal with this?
    “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.”
    We cannot be pure in the world. And we cannot make the world pure by killing everything that isn’t. That is one of the missing bits of the old testament that Jesus came to fill in. The ancient Israelites had a law to tell them how to be pure and the full power of God to back them up, and they almost instantly failed. They were happy enough to do the massacring but afterwards, the Bible tells us, the Israelites looted and polluted themselves anyway, and rapidly abandoned God for Canaanite ways.
    They can therefore rightly be condemned as murderers, as can anyone who kills in the name of God who is not themselves, like God, utterly without fault. (Which, of course, as Jesus well knew, no-one.)

  • Vernon

    universal? no, especially in gnostic christianity where catholicism is pretty much regarded as stupidity.

  • Herm

    Vernon,

    This is googled:

    cath·o·lic

    ˈkaTH(ə)lik/Submit

    adjective

    1.

    (especially of a person’s tastes) including a wide variety of things; all-embracing.

    synonyms: universal, diverse, diversified, wide, broad, broad-based, eclectic, liberal, latitudinarian
    ****************************************************
    … and this is recited every Sunday in many Protestant churches who subscribe to the reformation of Luther:

    Apostles’ Creed

    1. I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth:

    2. And in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord:

    3. Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary:

    4. Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead and buried: He descended into hell:

    5. The third day he rose again from the dead:

    6. He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty:

    7. From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead:

    8. I believe in the Holy Ghost:

    9. I believe in the holy catholic church: the communion of saints:

    10. The forgiveness of sins:

    11. The resurrection of the body:

    12. And the life everlasting. Amen.

  • Herm I love your ‘quick reply’ bro ;)

  • There’s nothing like a nice, accurate thunderbolt to do the job. Better even than a Paveway…..

  • Herm

    Okay, you caught me! When I’m really tired the weakest of me shows through to where simply too verbose gets a whole lot more rambling added in. I am not afraid, although, to show my most extreme vulnerable side when I have friends such as you to pick me back up. Thanks!

  • LA Julian

    For many centuries Christians burned people alive for heresy and husband-killing, crushed convicted traitors under stones or disemboweled them, mandated legal rape of women in lawful marriage which could not be escaped by divorce, and waged the most brutal punitive actions in wars of religion without hesitation, all the while allowing violent torture by government for a myriad of crimes — all of this quite apart from the slaveowning industry — in those good old days of theocratic rule that so many pastors and politicians claim to miss.

    The small minority of Christian clergy and thinkers who protested this and championed human rights in the name of divine mercy made no noticeable headway against the status quo of routine brutality and disdain for human life.

    It was the growing secular humanist movements of the Enlightenment that did have an impact, a dramatic and recent one, to make a West in which criminals are no longer branded or maimed by states that rule in the name of Jesus, in which for example English executioners no longer show mercy by quietly strangling the condemned in defiance of the law before burning them, something that was still in living memory during Queen Victoria’s time. 1700 years of Christianity alone had not stopped any of this, anywhere ruled by countries with national churches, so glass houses, high horses, and beams come to mind.

  • Herm

    iain, amen to “Jesus in transforming the soul of mankind” but woe to those who yet destroy bodies, souls and spirits under the banner of Christianity. Love your observations, thanks!

  • That’s not what the Bible says.

    Matthew 1:21-22 says that Jesus will save “his people” from their sins, and Matthew has this fulfilling Isaiah’s prophecy of Israel’s deliverance from Assyria.

    Matthew 10:5-15 has Jesus telling his disciples to specifically avoid the Gentiles and “go only to the lost sheep of Israel.”

    Matthew 15:4 has Jesus telling a Canaanite woman that he was only sent to the lost sheep of Israel, although he eventually relents to heal her daughter because of her persistence.

    Although there are the odd exceptions here and there, inclusion of the Gentiles isn’t even on the radar until the missionary work of Peter and Paul.

    I would be very interested to see what passage -you’re- thinking of.

  • Ike

    Hi Phil, I will give you one – Look at Isaiah 49, especially verses 5 and 6:
    And now says the Lord, who formed Me from the womb to be His Servant,
    To bring Jacob back to Him and that Israel might be gathered to Him,
    —For I am honored in the eyes of the Lord,
    And My God is My strength—
    6
    He says, “It is too trivial a thing that You should be My Servant
    To raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the [c]survivors of Israel;
    I will also make You a light to the nations
    That My salvation may reach to the end of the earth.. (Amplified)

    In KJV:
    And now, saith the Lord
    that formed me from the womb to be his servant, to bring Jacob again to
    him, Though Israel be not gathered, yet shall I be glorious in the eyes
    of the Lord, and my God shall be my strength.

    6 And he said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise
    up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will
    also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my
    salvation unto the end of the earth…

    Also, Abraham was promised that through him all the nations or all the families of the earth would be blessed (Genesis 12) Through the lienage of Abraham came Yahshua, the Blessing of all nations.

    Yahshua gave the command earlier not to go to the Gentiles because the time had not yet come to do so – the equipper the Holy Spirit had not yet come to Earth to do so for the apostles and disciples, only for Yahshua, so that they could see His example and live likewise.

    In Matthew 28:16-20 however,Yahshua does give the command to go to all nations: We also see in Acts 1 that the Holy Spirit comes to equip them for ministry to both Jews and Gentiles. This no Gentile thing is a myth..

    The Great Commission

    16 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had designated. 17 And when they saw Him, they worshiped Him; but some doubted [that it was really He]. 18 Jesus came up and said to them, “All authority (all power of absolute rule) in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations [help the people to learn of Me, believe in Me, and obey My words], baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always [remaining with you perpetually—regardless of circumstance, and on every occasion], even to the end of the age.” Matt 28:16-20 (Amplified)

  • Who is the servant in Isaiah 49? Read verse 3.

    Israel is, in fact, supposed to be a light to the Gentiles. Their covenant obedience to Yahweh is meant to be a testimony to a people in close relationship to their active, delivering God, and this will entice the other nations to worship Israel’s God.

    However, Israel is disobedient, and it is because of this this that they fall under the curse and, instead of being preeminent among the nations, they are scattered and enslaved. Jesus comes to deliver them from this condition, or as Matthew puts it “save his people from their sins.” Once this is accomplished, this marks the beginning of a renewed Israel make the kingdom of God, and this redemptive work is also supposed to move the Gentiles to come to Jesus, but instead of merely being a light to the Gentiles with Israel at the head, Gentiles and Jews are brought together into one new people of God, per Eph. 3.

    The Holy Spirit only comes to Jews in Acts 1-2, and only Jews hear the message. The Holy Spirit only falls on Gentiles as the missionary work rolls out to Gentiles. Once again, there are small exceptions here and there, but Jesus’ mission and ministry is 99.99% wrapped up in Israel’s destiny.

  • Ike

    Those who did these terrible things are not Christians in spirit, only
    in name. Yahshua did not do such things, and did not instruct anyone to
    do so. Indeed, He said that His followers would be known by their
    fruits, fruits similar to His, fruits of mercy, grace, justice, love
    etc. But the Christians did have an impact, for people like William Wilberforce campaigned for the abolition of slavery for example, inspired by Christian teaching to do so

  • Ike

    The Servant is Yahshua, not Israel. If you read it in context, for it to coherent, and in line with the rest of Scripture, the Servant is Yahshua. He stated in the NT (Matt 20:28) that He had come to serve, not be served, and serve as a ransom for many. Israel could not be the servant because as a nation they consistently fell short of God’s Glory.

  • So, Isaiah is incorrect in his identification of the servant as Israel.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Isn’t it interesting. Whenever you use an example from history. They never reply.

  • Hehe no problem. I think you started with the intention of ‘quick’ but then got into your stride!

  • Herm

    … all that stopped any of us from replying to tit for tat history examples was the “I could go on and on and on and on”.

  • The Mongols rebuilt a thing or two as well in their conquests. Like, you know, Baghdad.

  • Bart Ehrman is a leading opponent of the mythicist movement and has even written books about it. Blame Richard Carrier.

    I also find the thought that “shortly” means “from God’s perspective, which is an indefinitely long period of time consisting of at least two millennia and counting.”

  • The return of the Son of Man in the clouds is a reference to the destruction of Jerusalem. Jesus didn’t physically “show up” (well, Josephus says he did, but I think that’s iffy) anymore than Yahweh physically “showed up” when he came down in judgement.

    Do a survey of the early church’s perspective of the destruction of Jerusalem.

  • That first sentence is gold.

  • Dave L

    A friend asked me to help him with this article. Here is my response.

    First, I wanted to take a look at the guy’s credentials because he calls himself a scholar, but does not associate himself with an organization or university. This is a bit of a red flag. His two masters degrees are both masters of arts (entry level as compared to an MDiv and an MPhil) and his dissertation is a missiology focus where he is looking at human trafficking. Human trafficking is not a theological issue nor is it a mission field. This seems to suggest his motivation for his study derives from social norms and concerns rather than from the Bible. While anyone can be concerned about human trafficking, the fact that he’s studying at a very liberal school (Fuller Seminary) and his missionary studies are on human trafficking, he seems to look at things with a secular slant to his worldview rather than coming from a biblical stance. This is critical to his writing, as he fails to discern the difference between what we view as problems (through our finite, human, secular views of the world) and what God see as problems in the world (through his infinite, divine, perfect, spiritual view of the world). He’s written a book, but the book was endorsed by McLaren (founder of the Emergent Church heresy) and Frank Schaeffer (son that fell VERY far from his father’s proverbial tree whose views are lockstep secular humanist views). Thus, in my research, I expect to read secular humanistic tripe, and I was not disappointed (well, I was disappointed, but I was not wrong).

    To summarize his argument, the Bible affirms evil deeds through the Canaanite genocide, and thus, Christians are inconsistent in decrying Muslim atrocities while not equally decrying the Canaanite genocide.

    There are two problems with this. First, the author implies an equal level for Christianity and Islam. Both deeds perpetrated by Muslims and the Judeo-Christian readings of the Pentateuch (first 5 books of the OT) are supposedly cast in the same light. Both claim God’s direction. It’s a bit of a prolonged argument bound up in this sentence, but believe me when I say this, Islam and Christianity do not worship the same God. There are not multiple paths to God. Jesus is the only way. Islam refutes this in multiple places throughout the Quran. So, we have our first issue. Since Islam and Christianity worship different deities, only one can be right. Really, at best, only one can be right. Considering the evidence for Christianity and the lack of evidence for any other religion in the world, I think that answer is settled enough to move on.

    The second and at least as big of an issue is the errant view of sin and judgment. This is a mistake made typically by the New Atheists movement like Richard Dawkins and the late Christopher Hitchens. But, their arguments have been so loud that they have entered society despite their lack of substance. Secular humanists (people whose starting point for their worldview is social and human-centered rather than biblical) With a human centered view, killing is the greatest evil. With a biblical centered view, persistent denial of God and disobedience is the greatest evil. God kept the people out of Canaan for two reasons during their 40 years in the desert. One was because of the Jewish people’s disobedience. The other was because the sins of the Amorites (a tribe in the land) had not reached its full measure (Gen 15:16). God’s actions against the Canaanites, a people who sacrificed their children to Moloch and worshiped a myriad of idols, were judgment for their evil deeds. To keep God’s children pure, God decreed all the people be killed. A secular humanist view of this sees atrocity. A biblical view sees this as God’s chosen people being kept pure. Of course, the Jewish leaders failed to follow God’s command, and these tribes caused all kinds of problems for the Jewish people, to include introducing idolatry that did not stop until the return after the Exile 1000 years later.

    We just had an apologetics conference at our church and Dr. Clay Jones was one of the speakers. He was excellent and he has written some on this topic. It can be found here: http://www.clayjones.net/?s=canaanite+genocide

    Another good resource is: https://bible.org/article/canaanites-genocide-or-judgment

    The greatest problem with the article is that the author uses secular humanist points of view to subvert biblical inerrancy. He says his morality is right. All killing is wrong. That is, he puts himself above God and redefines God in his image. Instead, the proper way is to understand WHY God did what He did. God loves humanity but abhors sin. God will not stand for it. Abraham was a sinner, but his faith was credited to him as righteousness. Thus, Abraham was saved by grace through faith. God will forgive those who yield to Him. The Canaanites were given time to do so and did not. We do not have a record of how God interacted with them, but we at least know that the heavens declare the glory of God so that man has no excuse. They rejected God and He was patient (Gen 15:16). Thus, when we see God’s love and patience, we should understand that there is a limit to it. God does not forgive the unrepentant. His justice dictates that He judge them in accordance with their sin. God’s infinite love is shown in His desire to reestablish His relationship with us despite our sin. God’s justice is seen in his judgment of those who ignore His free gift. God is both just and loving. Our society that seeks to avoid personal responsibility for our own actions and forgiveness of everything we do forgets what judgment is like. Thus, society recreates God in its own image and ignores judgment. And, that is how we get to articles like the one you shared.

    Please let me know if you have any follow-on questions or if I glossed over
    anything. I hope this helps.

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    Ben,

    There are reasons why I said postmodernism and in light of what you said recently on a previous post (What People Really Mean When They Say I Believe the Whole Bible), I tend to think your arguments rectify the point.

    “But whenever there is tension between something Jesus said and something from elsewhere in the Bible the tiebreaker always goes to Jesus. ALWAYS.”

    Here’s a question: Does the tiebreak go to Jesus if these commandments to kill are coming out of from the same mouth who said to teach to love thy enemies?

    This is the part you have not dealt with–OT sanctions against the wicked. There are plenty of instances riddled with these all over–it’s not just Moses and Joshua only. You’ve got the prophets (Samuel, David, Elijah, and Elisha) and some political leaders (e.g., Samson & Jehu) who did the same. The ironic thing is that God commends this kind of work.

    What do you make of this?

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    No, inerrancy isn’t an 19th Century invention–try 16th Century.

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    Academic Snubbery–can it get any more original?

  • Herm

    Post your fullness of knowledge with references to enlightened us by way of your countering brilliance, please.

  • So how are we to love God with our whole heart and man per the two great commandments you quote. Where are the guide lines?

  • Iain Lovejoy

    If God’s patience is limited his love is not infinite.
    If God decides to kill a person and then torture them for all eternity because he has decided that the person has had long enough to repent, he has ceased to love that person within any meaning of the word “love”.
    Your argument relies on God’s love being finite which is contrary to the Bible and the Christian faith.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    He probably could, and you can’t. So you quit.

  • Margot Fernandez

    The federal government affirms and supports the right to choose. I repeat: the freedom of an individual woman to decide what is right for her and her body trumps ideology.
    I will mention to you that I had a life-and-death delivery based on the fact that I was on the older end of the scale and carried a pregnancy for 10 full months. I had an emergency, last-minute surgical delivery and was given up for lost. I considered the risks before going through with the pregnancy and I don’t regret. The baby was fine but I was in the hospital for 5 days, recovering. I would do it again but I would NEVER try to tell another woman that she must do the same.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I agree 100% and this is no description of the Christian God.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Ben, your correct on paper. Wrong in spirit. This argument is commonly used by people who say, “Muslims, Jews, and Christians all worship the same God.” Thats where it falls apart. If I worship Christ. The only path to the Father is through him. Muslims don’t agree. So they don’t worship the same God. They can’t without accepting Christ’s atoning death.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    I don’t think God needs our help to prevent the extinction of Christianity.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Ever heard of Kim Davis an elected official, not a hired govt. worker. She went to jail for just that.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Once again. Why does Ben get to co-opt the definition of Pro-Life. Any reasonable man would agree it has been all about the abortion issue for years. I don’t know why you accuse me of being angry. Its all fun Bra! “The Free Market Place of Ideas” I see us all laughing and smiling while we engage each other in spirited debates. Im not the one who said Freeking …. That was Ben. Go back and read his articles. He calls himself cranky in his bio. I like “Mr Cranky Pants” better. Never take this stuff to seriously it will eat you up.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    “Excluded middle?” Your either dead or alive. As an unborn baby. Your dead or alive without a choice.

  • TeDeumLaudamus

    I’m not an American Evangelical Christian, for one. And for another, you are reciting a litany of only the evils, in some instances even attempting to inflate their degree of awfulness against all other such events in history. I can’t argue that life is cyclical, but as the Lord is with us, and He has overcome evil, your litany is only part of what is real and true.

    Many people live the truth of this every day; without being blind, stupid or immune to the effects of evil in the world, they live with joy, share love, are generous with one another and raise strong, godly children in a community of faith. People are healed, have their needs met and share the love of Jesus with anyone. Many of them spend their lives serving the poor and infirm, and live lives of simplicity no matter how large their income.

    This is the reality you should look for because it’s out there. It’s life led by the Holy Spirit and it is highly evolved both socially and spiritually.

  • Jeff Preuss

    I believe Phil’s post was meant as sarcasm.

    EDIT: …which I now see you know. :P Disqus orders things funny sometimes.

  • I have no idea where you’re getting that, but I’ll give you points for being the first person to reject a claim of modernism in favor of a medieval one.

  • Herm

    Love is a bond. Love is not an action. Love dispels all fear of those we love. To be bonded with the Lord God by love, according to Jesus, is to recognize our bond with our neighbor as with our self and our bond with our enemy. Love fulfills the law for all if in everything we do to all others as we would have all others do to us. Don’t you just love the relational circling around and intertwining love generates? The following is the direct road map to hopefully answer your question.

    The only way we can become disciples (students) of the Lord Jesus begins with Luke 14:26, 27. All disciples of Christ are his siblings except for his mother of Man (Matthew 12:48-50). The will of the Father is that we become children of God (John 6:40) (John 1:12, 13).

    Now please think spiritual with no beginning and no end, with no physical dimensions as restricting boundaries especially like the shell that houses our spirit (heart, soul and mind in the image of God, male and female) that the mortal communicate through. God as spirit can be everywhere at once and sit entirely on a pimple protruding from the surface of an electron revolving within any atom of Their choice. With that picture study in whatever Bible version speaks to you John 14:15-21 and John 16:12-15. With the Spirit of Truth in us plus we are in full allegiance with our Family of God in awe of our Father and Brother in us what’s not to love?

    I am certain with your introspective honesty you can at least or do at best know God as a little child of God you cannot help but love the Lord your God to trust that He will lead into only good for you and yours eternally. That love is the guideline.

    This help at all? I can only testify that it works that way for me and this is real.

    If you would like to share the real world, as in evolution from a big bang, as you know does not negate the spiritual reality of a creator God when viewed from an eternal spiritual empire perspective instead of just from the limitations of this little bitty speck of dust planet keeping track of time by way of revolving around one of the smallest suns in the cosmos we are growing to see I am available to learn with you.

    Accepting Jesus as our Messiah we are free to grow, play and learn as only little children can when trusting their Family to nurture, provide and protect. I think you know that. Love you!

  • Andy Falstad

    It all comes down to who’s god is God? If Yahweh is God then Aĺlah is not. Then we can quit questioning His methods and ask Him to make us wise, because in our own strength, we are not. God has made a new covenant and is no longer requiring ànyone to live under the old covenant he made with Israel ( including Israel).

  • Andy Falstad

    God has said you are drowning and here’s a life preserver. If you won’t take it and die, it’s not his fault.

  • Al Cruise

    Clearly your response is more about defending right wing fundamentalist tribalism , than it has to do with the nature of God. I speak from 40 years of street ministry and seeing the power of God among the least of us.

  • seashell

    Islam and Christianity do not worship the same God. There are not multiple paths to God. Jesus is the only way.

    “Now there’s a man with an open mind – you can feel the breeze from here!” — Groucho Marx

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    This isn’t an academic forum where I need to post a thesis on the subject–besides, you’re missing the point. You’re acting as if this guy is the only educated person on the planet and anyone else who disagrees would be those who aren’t as educated as he is.

    Again, this is snubbery.

    But I did share some examples to prove the point when I responded to Ben. See above.

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    Just a little bit of concise thinking (hint: in order for the Bible to be authoritative for Sola Scriptura to be an actually functioning doctrine, it has to be inerrant and infallible) and examining the confessions would definitely lead to that conclusion.

    And I’ll give you some extra credit for thinking that postmodernism has produced the most advanced if not most superior individuals in history ::sarcasm::

  • LadySunami

    You mean you are telling us that we are drowning and that your deity is the only one who can provide a life preserver. Practitioners of other faiths tell us the exact same thing. Why should we assume you are telling the truth, and not them?

    Why are all the life preservers everyone keeps offering completely invisible and intangible? How are we to know if we’ve actually grabbed a life preserver at all, let alone a real one?

    In real life situations of drowning and life preservers, rescue workers don’t just throw an camouflaged life preserver at you and then let you drown if you can’t find it. They paint the things bright neon colors so you can see them and go in after it to help you out.

    http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/migration_catalog/article25650537.ece/ALTERNATES/h342/rescue1.jpg

    At no point are you left wondering if the water you were drowning in or the rescue worker who drags you out actually exist or not. They pretty obviously do.

  • Herm

    “Here’s a question: Does the tiebreak go to Jesus if these commandments to kill are coming out of from the same mouth who said to teach to love thy enemies?”

    The answer is those commandments did not come out of the same mouth. You are not being snubbed your question is too vague in a form of a gotcha’ no matter the response. Do you believe the Bible is inerrant? If so why?

    Matthew 7:12 and Matthew 22:37-40 sum up and hang on all the Law and the Prophets. Jesus is recorded no where else, including in all His disciples’ hearts and minds, contradicting those verses. His commands are all to love the Lord your God, your neighbor, your self, your fellow disciples, and your enemy. Jesus commands only His disciples; His mother, His sisters and His brothers.

    Do you find a contradiction in the Bible?

  • Herm

    Dear Dave,

    Could you please explain to me Matthew 7:12, Matthew 22:37-40 and lastly Luke 10:25-37 as each seems mighty clear and with definitive finality with the use of the word “all”. If you could do so relative to the thesis (is that the word?) you just graced us with I would appreciate it, also.

    What exactly were the scholastic credentials establishing the authority of Jesus, Peter, James, Matthew and John? Weren’t the scholastic credentials of those teachers of the law, Sadducee and Pharisees who were insufficiently righteous to enter heaven of a higher order?

    I have so many questions you might be able to answer for me that I dare not go on any further. Just these questions would help me immensely if you could answer them for me.

    Thank you in advance!

    Love,

    Herm

  • Investigator

    Perhaps there are two servants being spoken of here as verse 5 rules out the servant being Israel unless the servant is going to bring himself back to the Lord.

    It sounds like you are saying, correct me if I’m wrong, that Jesus didn’t die for the rest of mankind, only the Jews. Or possibly, you are saying his ministry, while incarnate, was only to the Jews but that he did in fact die for ALL mankind. If you will, please clarify.

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    Well how do you explain them then? This anecdote is not strictly limited to the Canaanites, we find this several times of God commanding followers to kill infidels in the OT. ( I can list them if you want). Are you saying these were just added later? If so, then what evidences do you have to offer this? I tend to think the Scriptures are inerrant, because there is sufficient evidences to make the case for it.

  • Investigator

    George, I’ve almost given up speaking with Herm. It is just too taxing to decipher his thoughts. He seems a nice enough guy but his syntax and spiritualistic discourse are a pain to read.

  • Herm

    Do you see you’re not working with me here? You are willing to list the occurrences in the Old Testament where God is written to have commanded followers to kill infidels (which I am aware of) and yet you won’t list the sufficient evidence to you to think the Scriptures are inerrant which I can’t be aware of until you share them.

    If you believe the Bible is inerrant then we need to approach your quandary from a different perspective, but I need to know why?

    Help me, please!

  • Investigator

    No, the breeze was the Holy Spirit, passing you by.

  • Investigator

    Really? Could you give some details because I respect those who have done street ministry; I’ve done a fair share myself (nothing approaching 40 years, not even close). But what Dave L shared was exactly, spot on, 100% scriptural, couldn’t have said it better myself. If you are willing, could you share what you found objectionable?

  • Investigator

    He gives you an entire lifetime, how much do you need to respond to the love and salvation Christ offers?

    The old cliche is true…Jesus saves. The Bible is also very clear about why people find themselves in hell, because they spurn, reject, and defer Christ’s offer of salvation.

  • Investigator

    Evidence. Fulfilled Biblical prophecy, the resurrection of Christ (no other explanation other than a literal resurrection suffices), the conversion of Saul of Tarsus to the apostle Paul, and the testimony of Jesus himself, etc. etc. etc.
    Other religions fail on all these tests. Most don’t even try; it is just believe or don’t believe.

    When hiring an engineer, do you hire the one with degrees, patents, lists of projects worked on, or some teenager with a squirt gun in his hand?

  • seashell

    Academic Snubbery–can it get any more original?

    As a passenger, I’m partial to trained pilots. For medical problems, people who have been to medical school are preferred. Higher learning is a good thing in Theological matters, as well. I wish there more with higher learning on the subject to counter much of the fact-free opinion that abounds.

  • seashell

    Speaking of breezes, feeling gassy are you?

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Thank you. So very good. Lots of work, and spot on. I could never do that. I am blessed by this.

  • Investigator

    Magnificent response!

    It is an issue Christians have struggled with for perhaps centuries. The problem with pain and evil in the world and it has caused many to lose faith.

    God is God and we’re not. He views events on an eternity scale. The nation of Israel was to be God’s representative here on earth and it is manifest the Lord didn’t want Israel infected with the sins of the idolatrous nations around her.

    Destroying them seems cruel from a human stand point, but God’s ways are higher than ours and again, he views the world on an eternity scale.
    Acts 17:26 says: From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live.

    The Lord fore knew who would receive him and who would reject him. Although speculation, perhaps those he knew would reject him he placed in Canaan during the time of Israel’s conquest. It is a question one can take up with the Lord in glory land, as unsatisfying an answer as that is.

    What we cannot do, what we must not do, is what Benjamin Corey appears to have done. Create a God of his own making by determining what acts and attributes of God he agrees with and chucking the rest (correct me if I’m wrong on this Benjamin, I don’t wish to erect the kind of straw men I’ve been pointing out in others here in this blog). Doing away with Hell because it seems just too terrible for a God of Love, even though this God of Love has told us in no uncertain terms that Hell is real. Tossing inerrancy out for the same reasons, excusing and/or ignoring Biblical prohibitions against homosexuality, embracing what appears to be just a social gospel designed to assuage guilt, and on and on.

    An honest question for those who follow the pied piper, who is your God, who is he really? A patchwork Deity plucked from selected favorite themes in the Bible mixed with a heavy dose of humanism and spiritualist quackery? Or the real God of scripture, the Lord Christ Jesus, son of God and God the son.

    Joshua 24:15 “…choose you this day whom ye will serve…”

  • Investigator

    Could you describe for us who the Christian God is?

  • Investigator

    In fact William Wilberforce is MOST responsible for ending the slave trade in England.

    Who has done more to feed the hungry and clothe the naked than Christians in this world?

    Good response Ike.

  • LadySunami

    What about all the unfulfilled Biblical prophecy? Jesus in particular failed to fulfill many Biblical prophecies about the Jewish Messiah.

    What is the Messiah supposed to accomplish? The Bible says that he will:

    A. Build the Third Temple (Ezekiel 37:26-28).

    B. Gather all Jews back to the Land of Israel (Isaiah 43:5-6).

    C. Usher in an era of world peace, and end all hatred, oppression, suffering and disease. As it says: “Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall man learn war anymore.” (Isaiah 2:4)

    D. Spread universal knowledge of the God of Israel, which will unite humanity as one. As it says: “God will be King over all the world—on that day, God will be One and His Name will be One” (Zechariah 14:9).

    The historical fact is that Jesus fulfilled none of these messianic prophecies.

    For non Jesus related prophecy failures, you have Tyre which was never razed by Nebuchadnezzar and still exists to this day (Ezekiel 26:7-14), Egypt has never become an empty wasteland for a period of 40 years (Ezekiel 29:8-15) nor has the Nile ever dried up (Ezekiel 30:12, Isaiah 19:1-8), and the Davidic line has not endured and definitely hasn’t kept the throne (2 Samuel 7:13-16, 1 Kings 11:34-36).

    Yeah, the Bible hasn’t done all that well as a book of prophecy.

    —–

    What evidence do you have of Christ’s resurrection exactly?
    I know the Bible mentions witnesses, but other faiths have people who witnessed their miracles as well.

    What do you mean that no other explanation suffices?
    Of course there are other reasonable explanations. The most obvious of course is that those believers could have lied and/or been tricked. Assuming early believers were sincere, it’s actually quite likely early believers did not believe in a physical resurrection but a spiritual one, but the story changed with time (oral tradition does that you know). Indeed, the earliest copies of Mark that have been found stop at Mark 16:8, so we know that parts of at least one Gospel were added in later.

    —–

    How does Paul’s conversion prove anything exactly? Are you under the impression no other religions have historic teachers with dramatic conversion stories? Stories of people joining a faith they previously opposed aren’t all that uncommon.

    —–

    The testimony of Jesus himself? What do you mean by that? If you mean Christianity is based on what he supposedly said, then no duh. What religion doesn’t claim to be based on the teachings of their religious figures?

    —–

    Christianity also either fails your mentioned tests or just leaves them to “believe or don’t believe.” You haven’t actually provided any evidence, you’ve just made claims and declared them true.

  • That really is no answer. The American dream is one of hope and opportunity and 100 years ago it was welcoming immigrants to build the nation. But at the same time it was systematically annihilating its indigenous people and still treating blacks no better than slaves. The post war optimism was countermanded by its irrational fear of communism. A country that champions freedom is ravaged by gun violence because its people are insanely insecure despite being the most powerful nation on Earth.

    America is still one of the few countries with the death penalty and has the highest level of incarceration, another form of slavery. You working people are enslaved by their greedy employers. They don’t enjoy the paid holidays or sick leave we enjoy in Europe. Your democracy has been sold to the banks and corporations. Over 2 thousand years ago the Greeks were more civilised.

    You only have to look at the disgusting and depraved language that dogs social media to see that when unfettered by social conventions, people who otherwise behave decently descend into the pit that is the human heart. It was into this darkness that Jesus spoke and into this hell that he descended. You might not be a conservative Christian but many of these so called spirit filled, Bible believing Christians have engaged with the darkness and, in some cases, are the chief instigators of evil and corruption.

  • Ike

    Like I said Phil, Israel had failed to be a servant. Isaiah was not wrong. He knew they were, but in verse 6 only Yahshua fits the description.

  • Ike

    Babies cannot be, but their forbears could. Which is why as adults we should be careful how we live. Adam and Eve were not, look how Cain and Abel ended up. The sins of the fathers affect the children to the third generation. And so it continues..

  • Ike

    Allah was taken from allahu, a demon/idol worshipped where the Kabba now resides, who was said to have 3 daughters. Definitely not the only Living God then.

  • Rick Stevens

    Except not all followers of Yahweh agree the old covenant is gone. Just like may of the followers of Allah believe he is the same God as Yahweh.

    For many, they’re the same God, the question is actually in the covenant. Many Jews think the older covenants are still in place. Many Christians think the 1st century AD covenant trumps those, and many Muslims think their 5th century covenants trumps all of them.

  • Rick Stevens

    But see, the problem you’re running into here: “Islam and Christianity do not worship the same God. There are not multiple paths to God. Jesus is the only way.”

    Well, not all Christians believe that. Certainly many Jews do not.

    Allah/Yahweh/God is the same entity, the question comes in when one considers the “how to approach” component embedded in the different covenants.

    So if you are arguing from a “my view is correct and their is not,” well, then a fundamentalist Muslim is making PRECISELY that same argument.

  • Rick Stevens

    The problem is that when you consider that frame “Those who did these terrible things are not Christians in spirit, only in name,” you’re talking about most Christians through most of the history of Christianity. So then, who and what gets to define the boundaries of “spirit”?

  • Dave L

    Hi Herm,

    Great question. Some might answer the question and say the NT passages were newer revelation, but each of these are portions of the OT cited by Jesus as the foundation of the Law. So, that doesn’t really fly. One thing we have to watch out for is the interaction between people and the commands by God. Yes, we are to treat each other well and not harm our brothers/sisters, but that is overlaid on the terrain of God’s Law and His judgments. It is utterly impossible for God to love without judging sin. He is perfectly holy and if He were to let sin slide, He would neither be perfect or holy. Much more, He would cease to love because He would have allowed utter anarchy. Thus, the Law and His judgments were given to order the world.

    The Apostles and authors of the NT never claimed to be “scholars.” The author here did, hence the question about the generic title. If you’re not checking up on people you read, then you’re missing a lot regarding their bias. Everyone has a bias. Everyone. Some are easier to detect the direction of their bias than others.

    I hope this helps, Herm. Have a great day worshiping our Lord and Savior!
    Dave

  • Ike

    Like Yahshua said, by their fruits, works you shall know them. I don’t have access to the stats you seem to have, but what people do when led by the Holy Spirit yields good fruit – acts of love, grace, mercy, forgiveness, kindness etc.

  • Herm

    Thank you Dave!

    Yes this does help. I do appreciate your time.

    Can I ask a few more questions?

    The first is do you have any evidence in your studies that might suggest we may become God one day with Christ and the Father?

    The second is do you have a sense that the Holy Spirit is active and if so how does that sense relate now?

    The third is what are your credentials and by whose authority do you teach?

    Please, do not mistake me as any more than a sincere student asking.

    May you continue to help us all. Bless you!

    Love,

    Herm

  • Iain Lovejoy

    There is no “our” God or “their” God. God is the eternal, infinite being of pure spirit / mind existing outside the ordinary universe of space and time from whom the ordinary universe of space and time has its origin and to whom it owes its existence. Anything else is not God.
    If you think there is “our” God and “their” God, but ours is the best one (or the only real one or “proper” one) then you are simply a polytheist with a rather limited pantheon.
    You also know nothing about Islam, which expressly worships the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and by which Jesus is recognised as his prophet.

  • Herm

    LadySunami, I love you dearly and value your zeal. All of the prophesies you brought over and questioned have been realized. In the eyes of Judas and Saul (the Pharisees) they could not have been fulfilled through Jesus. When Saul’s eyes were taken from him only then in the heart and mind of Paul (the Apostle) could he see that Jesus had met every test. If you would like I can take each one and even use the testaments to show you how, but only one at a time. If you don’t care that is perfectly fine with me, also. I will love you and your sincere honesty regardless and no less.

  • LadySunami

    As someone raised Catholic I think I know the basics of how Christians believe Jesus fulfilled the Messianic prophecies. It never bothered me much that they were not fulfilled exactly as stated, since I’ve never put much stock in fate or predestined events, but when people use the Bible’s supposedly perfect prophetic track record to dismiss all other faiths… that irritates me greatly. Why should it count when Jesus fulfilled prophecies in unexpected ways, when the same leeway can’t be granted to other faiths as well? It’s so dishonest and hypocritical.

  • Herm

    Little children who were fortunate enough to actually grow in love with and in awe of their family, to have certainty of faith that they would be nurtured, loved back and protected for the whole of their most vulnerable ignorant childhood, never knew to look first for the “track record” of their parents to know this was true for them. When they first were drawn to play with their own kind, other children who they could relate with equally as themselves, they never thought “to dismiss all other” families based on the track record of their family. For me it was a shock to first find the bully gang on the elementary school playground who pitted the superiority of their family track record against other family track records.

    As I grew and questioned why it began to unfold that there was more than met the eye than I was being told. I rebelled against all to prove to myself what was true no matter what my family, schools and churches were teaching as truth founded on track records or, in my term now, traditions. Oh, did that become complex trying to take it all in and process what I was learning to some clear truth. One day, in a high school Sunday school class, I was looking out of the window and actually pictured in my heart and mind the hand of God, for lack of more illustrative words, working against our family traditions that divide ours from an inclusion as one in mankind. Regressing ever out to create our own little exclusive special mankind like splinter groups, each weaker than the last group as mankind splits more and further apart if not for God’s intervention. We aren’t aware enough outside ourselves to be able to unite without an outside uniting spirit who can see us wholly.

    A much longer story shortened: in my forties I read Luke 10:25-37 and realized that if I was no more than as said in verse 27 I would live eternally in one family united. There was no tradition and/or track record of mankind that I had to honor, subscribe to or plead undying allegiance to that I might live to learn, adventure, relate and savor without end. Since then in that family of God I have been brought to trust and gauge only by what is written in Matthew 7:12 along with a similar reading in Matthew 22:34-40 to fulfill who I choose to be and who I choose to be a reciprocal loving member of. By your votes for some of my comments I would believe you already know that. By your love for all I believe you already live by those verses. There is no need to know more to know how to conduct yourself according to the will of God/Allah to unite, rather than divide, all who would choose to be in the divine Family as little children first learning from the Teacher.

    Love you! Thank you!

  • Dave L

    Hi Rick,

    Outstanding questions (well statements, but…) What someone believes is irrelevant when it comes to the truth. A cancer patient could believe they do not have cancer all the way up until the day they die from cancer. It doesn’t make it true. The unique benefit seekers gain from looking at Christianity in relation to other religions is that Christianity is the only religion in the world (not hyperbole) that makes truth claims in its foundational text that can be investigated AND hold up to that investigation. It’s pretty amazing. It turns out that Christianity really is true! This is concerning because all religions in the world make mutually exclusive claims that mean that ONLY one (at most) can be right. Is Jesus the Messiah? Did God come int he flesh and live with us to die a terrible death for the sins of you and me? For Christians, that is everything! (1 Cor 15 1-17) For Muslims, this belief is the ONLY thing that is unforgivable. Allah will not forgive those who commit the shirk (shirk – in essence practice polytheism, which is what Muslims call the Trinity…on a side note, the Quran lists the Trinity as God, Jesus and Mary). Thus, at their core, they are mutually exclusive and represent wholly different deities. Ask a Muslim if they believe in the Triune Godhead of the the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and you’ll see what I mean. (Be careful who you ask and where you ask, though, as some Muslims, especially those who grew up outside of the West, are often VERY offended by this sort of question.)

    Moreover, there is absolutely NO relation between disagreement and intolerance. The cross is offensive, but me saying I believe Muslims, secular humanists, Buddhists and others are utterly wrong because of the evidence for Christ is nothing other than me stating what the reason behind my belief. It means either taking Jesus at His own words that noone can come to the Father except through Him. Or, you reject Jesus’ words. Jesus was very plain. You cannot put a square peg in an equally sized round hole and we learned that as toddlers playing with blocks. But people who think all religions are equally right or are different paths did not learn the lessons of their youth.

    I encourage anyone who wants answers to life’s imponderable questions to look to Jesus when they do their investigations of religions. If you really take a look and open your mind up to the truth, it’s pretty hard to turn away from the free gift of salvation and the explanatory power that the Bible provides. I am constantly in awe. I hope anyone reading experiences this for themselves.

    I hope this helps, Rick.

  • Dave L

    Hi Herm,

    There are religions that believe they will become gods. The most prominent is Mormonism. In fact, Joseph Smith (founder of Mormonism) was murdered by a group of his followers after he preached his first sermon on how humans were little gods or gods in embryonic form. They believe YHWY was once a man like you and me. He lived such a good life that he was taken and made the god of this world. If people believe in Jesus, believe in Smith and do a few other Mormon-specific deeds to include living an exceptionally good life, they can become gods of their own planets. Mormons are henotheistic, meaning they are polytheists who choose a subset of many gods in which to worship.

    The problem with this – Satan’s sin was the desire to become like God. He was cast out of Heaven along with 1/3 of the angels for such a belief. We will be subordinate to God in Heaven, but we will judge angels. We will reign in Heaven with God, but we will not BE gods.

    To your second question – absolutely! Jesus, the first parakletos or helper (Jn 14:16), sent another parakletos to guide us. Holy Spirit indwells us at salvation and lives within us (1 Cor 3:16, 6:19). He is not someone to be summoned as He is already in us, if we are saved. John Walvoord wrote a superb book called The Holy Spirit from a conservative biblical perspective that parses Scripture to help us better understand the least talked about Third Person of the Triune Godhead.

    My authority, regardless of ANY education, is Scripture. Period. No farther must I go to justify and nowhere else can I go to gain knowledge of God. I cannot stand on any firmer ground and my studies are useless without that foundation. In my studies, I have an eclectic route with a BS Biology, a Masters of Divinity in Biblical Studies and a Masters of Philosophy in Strategy. Eclectic for sure. My passion is for apologetics (defense of the Christian faith) and I read in this genre quite a bit.

    I hope this helps and thank you for the great questions,
    Dave

  • Dave L

    Hi Iain,
    I completely agree, but will point out that God told Moses to have no other gods before Me. Moreover, God spoke about the gods Baal and Molech. This, and I think it applies to Andy, is not to suggest that these gods exist in the same manner as God, but that there are other entities called to by humanity.
    Dave

  • Dave L

    Hi Rick,

    I could believe there is only Rick Stevens in the world, but I could easily be proven wrong. My belief has no effect on the truth value of the claim. There is a truth that represents reality. Taking evidence and testing it gets us part of the way there – regardless of the discipline in which you speak. This is how science works. This is how history works. This is how religion works. Investigation gets you in the ballpark of the answer and then philosophy, logic and reason take over. Either both religions are wrong or one is right. The mutually exclusive claims by Muslims and Christians cannot both be right. They describe God in completely different ways. I cannot describe you as a brown-haired caucasian male and as a curly haired dark skinned woman from Africa and be correct in both statements. At best, one is right and one is wrong. Islam and Christianity do this. Thus, the same principle follows.

    Please let me know if I can help in any way,
    Dave

  • Well, that’s supposition on your part, but it’s not what the text actually says.

  • Herm

    Wow, thank you Dave! Aren’t we all a bit eclectic?

    I will certainly read John Walvoord’s book The Holy Spirit. The indwells us at salvation interests me probably most. Maybe, while I have your ear and you’re being so generous could you explain John 14:15-21 that I found regarding the Holy Spirit especially the “I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.”

    I am also wondering just how literally you think we should accept Matthew 12:50 and John 1:12 and 13. These verses have concerned me for a while, can you help?

    Thank you for responding so kindly to me!

    Herm

  • Chapter 4 also vacillates between Israel and Jacob, so it could be that he is referring to a subset of Israel bringing the whole back together.

    Jesus died because of the sins of Israel, in the first place. Historically speaking, as the news of the kingdom of God having come and Israel’s curse being over spread, Gentiles heard from the Jewish missionaries that Gentiles were now being brought into this kingdom to become one with faithful Israel and share in their promises and inheritance.

    The Gentiles who have faith in the saving work of Jesus are grafted into Israel’s covenant. Their sins are forgiven as well, but this is something that happens as a result of them being incorporated into Israel’s story, not Israel’s story being grafted into their experience. It’s the Greco-Roman apprehension of this story that transmutes it into a more abstract event.

  • No, the Bible can be plenty authoritative without being inerrant. Federal law is authoritative, and it’s plenty fallible. Inerrancy is a modernist weapon against equally modernist objections.

  • Herm

    If doctrine is mutually agreed to be “a belief or set of beliefs held and taught by a church, political party, or other group” how can disciples (students) of Christ, who has full authority over all of heaven and earth, begin to accept the Sola scriptura as their doctrine when it states that the Bible is the supreme authority in all matters of doctrine and practice? Wouldn’t that be serving two master?

  • Herm

    Got that book, reading it, thank you!

  • Iain Lovejoy

    The distinction is between the polytheists’ “gods” – powerful supernatural beings supposedly existing as (more-or-less) within the ordinary universe and created with it, with their own particular powers, attributes, preferences and followers, and the God of monotheism – a unique, eternal and infinite being existing outside the universe of space and time and responsible for bringing it into being.
    Any reference to “God” in the monotheistic sense (whatever religion is talking about him) must refer to the same entity, as by definition there can only be one of him.
    If you start talking about “our” god as opposed to “their” god as if God were your own special supernatural being just for you, you are making a profound mistake about the nature of God.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Herm, I all ready like you. Keep this up and you will gain more and more respect from me. Dave L and Herm keeps this up much longer. I mite just never write. Just read you two guys going back and forth. Keep it up. Its beautiful.

  • Dave L

    Absolutely agree.

  • Dave L

    There were three possibilities regarding dealing with women in the ancient world after a war where the men were killed –

    1) leave the women to fend for themselves (in other words, relegate them to rape, prostitution, starvation or mauling by animals…did you know lions lived in the area until well past AD 500? Jordan has several hunting lodges in the desert built for lion and gazelle hunting…fascinating stuff);
    2) treat the women terribly by raping them (sex trafficking);
    3) Take them into your society and if you fancy them, marry them. Otherwise care for them. This third portion is what the Bible directed Israel to do.

    The Bible speaks of two forms of war and how to treat the people after the war is won. God gave commands on how to treat the Canaanites (destroy them all so they will not influence the Israelites to depart from God) and then He gave rules on how to fight wars with everyone else. This was the beginning of jus in bello (arising well before the Latin term for laws restricting war’s violence). Now, there are many historical examples in the OT of people disobeying God’s decree. First, the Israelites failed to kill all the people in Canaan. They paid by being dogged by these people for centuries and were frequently temped into idolatry following in the Canaanite’s footsteps. Second, they failed to treat their defeated enemies as God decreed. Various punishments occurred for this. Saying the Bible condoned these acts under this second heading is utterly wrong.

    If you have not looked into these options, you might think of including them in your work. There are several good texts on the customs and lifestyles of the Israelites in OT times that can help you get a better grip on the issue.

    Mr. Corey, in light of James 3:1, I encourage you to be very careful about teaching people to have a low view of Scripture and by injecting human trafficking falsely into Scripture.

  • Nathan Aldana

    except you know. that lifetime ends at randonm junctures, and for some long before they would have had any chance to make an informed choice. besides, “love me or I torture you forever” isnt an offer of love, its the sort of offer you expect from the creepy man down the street who catured you in his basement in a well.

    Claiming thats a form of love just makes atheists like me have our skin crawl and start looking into restraining orders.

  • Nathan Aldana

    feeding the hungry and clothing the naked is nice, but it doesnt exactly solve any longterm problems they might have, you realize.

  • Dave L

    Hi Herm,

    The people of the age when Jesus taught knew the Scriptures. They knew what to look for. When it occurred, it was different than the false, self-centered worldview they had overlaid on the Scripture. (Sound familiar? Isn’t this happening again in exactly the same way?) They wanted a king. Jesus performed many miracles, yet the people still asked for a sign. Jesus’ answer was that This Temple would be destroyed and rebuilt in 3 days. The entirety of Christian belief is set upon this foundation (1 Cor 15). In this passage in John, Jesus is speaking to a similarly disbelieving group called His disciples. They wanted to believe, but their worldview was also tainted. They just didn’t get it. That is why the mother of the Sons of Thunder (John and James) asked Jesus if they could sit at his sides when the Kingdom was established. Jesus knew of Peter’s denial and Judas’ betrayal. Then, Jesus tells them how no one can come to the Father except through Jesus (Jn 15:1-14). This then leads into a passage where Jesus equates Himself to the Father and tells us He will be our link to God. If we believe in Jesus, we will live. He begins this in Jn 15:10-12 and reiterates it in 15-17 with the addition or clarification of another parakletos (helper).

    As for taking the Bible literally, I am very conservative BUT I dislike the term “literal.” The idea is to seek the author’s intended meaning through the context and other tools. For instance, taking some of the Psalms literally (like David crying a bed of tears) is not the author’s intent. Scripture uses metaphors and other devices. The trick is finding them where they are intended and not finding them everywhere like Origen did (I see Origen as the father of overly literal biblical interpretation because he abused analogies and found them everywhere…making others reject the idea of analogies so they become overly literal.)

    With that said, Matt 12:50 and John 1:12-13 are fully true, but I believe we are too finite to perfectly realize who is and is not doing the will of the Father. We can get a sense of it, but we can never know in this lifetime. People are too good at hiding their sin from others. The Jews in Jesus’ time saw the Pharisees as the pinnacle of religious devoutness. Few saw the reality. The same is true today. That is why 1 Thess 5:21 is SO important. It applies to us hearing pastors. It appears to us hearing bloggers. It applies to you hearing me. Test everything (against Scripture) and hold to what is true.

    It’s a pleasure, Herm. Please let me know if this generates more questions.

    Dave

  • Bill

    Wow. Until I read this I never realized how deeply the American belief in helping oneself has hit theology. If you are a Biblical literalist you would have to believe God decides who will turn and who will burn and there is no bootstrapping. I nearly lost my faith over this and I am sorry I gotta agree with Ben Corey. Otherwise God seems very hypocritical. Most fundagelicals are too scared to face this (I know I am/was one of them)

  • Bill

    Awful analogy

  • Bill

    I almost lost my faith because fundagelicals wont budge on this and do mental gymnastics to believe it. People in OT times believed they were doing Gods will. They wrote it from that POV. Sorry thats all there is to it. Inspired. yes. Slanted to their agenda, very much so.

  • Bill

    Add to that they vote Republican

  • Bill

    This is gross and awful. We need real change. That is why I endorse Bernie Sanders for President. He gets it. The others dont

  • Bill

    Love what you said. Coming to that conclusion SAVED my faith

  • Bill

    LOL.

  • seashell

    Secular humanists (people whose starting point for their worldview is social and human-centered rather than biblical) With a human centered view, killing is the greatest evil. With a biblical centered view, persistent denial of God and disobedience is the greatest evil.

    It seems like your reasoning could be considered valid under a biblical centered view, but valid does not equal true. In fact, it is only valid for those who hold biblical centered views, while the human centered view, that killing is the greatest evil, would be valid and hold true across most religions, cultures, demographics and beliefs. How does a belief that does not hold true even for some Christians trump a belief that can be universally shared (by all of God’s children)? Not to mention that the biblically held view sounds much like the view held by extremist Muslims.

  • Bill

    The devils kingdom will be destroyed (literally and figuratively). At that point it is a war. That is a far cry from saying kill children or rot in hell because you are a Buddhist

  • Bill

    God is above time but I am not sure why I stand on eschatolgy. Ben, you are an inspiration. You and I are pretty close theologically and you have given me hope. If there were not people like you I probably would have become a Buddhist. I have faith. Fundagelicalism almost ruined it. I just need a place to worship now. I cant follow the Republican American buddy Christ bobblehead Jesus anymore. I want the real deal. Like you talked about in your book.

  • Bill

    Yes Tim. That is what I discovered. Now I am branded as a heretic. Stuck between two worlds. The liberals dont fully accept me because I am a Christian (though their actions are Christlike) and the conservative Churches make me feel like if they knew who I was they would prefer Satan himself than me.

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    This topic isn’t about proving whether Scriptural Inerrancy has a basis its claims or if its basis originate from 19th Century ideology; this topic is about addressing the inconsistency for inerrant view.

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    Sola Scriptura requires one to believe Scriptures to be inerrant; this is not a 19th Century invention. It goes all the way back to the Reformation and the Church Fathers. The burden of proof really lies on you.

  • Ike

    We will have to gracefully agree to disagree on this one Phil. God bless you and yours..

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    You’ve missed my points: (1) Ben Corey is one of many different qualified individuals who are either in favor or disfavor of inerrancy–he is not the solely qualified expert and (2) Just because I do not have the degrees does not prove my arguments invalid; it’s the evidence, not the qualifications that make the arguments valid.

  • Dave L

    Seashell,

    Excellent question. As an interlude, I must say that I am very thankful for the congenial discussion here. This does not happen often on the internet.

    It depends on the way truth works. If there is an absolute knowable truth (not perfectly knowable…we are finite, after all, but substantially knowable), then there are rankings of worldviews where some are objectively better than others. If there is no absolute truth in religious matters, then it is all subjective. We are the gods that tell what is right and wrong because we create our own truth. The problem with this second issue arises in the fact that religions are testable. We can develop, catalog and verify religious claims. This means we have to approach religious investigation as a scientist approaches an experiment – with a working hypothesis and, most importantly, an open mind to what the evidence supports.

    With this in mind, you are absolutely correct that even Christians disagree on what is a correct Christian worldview. As I mentioned in another post here, humanity has always had incorrect preconceived notions. That was how the Jews, who knew the Scriptures well, missed the Messiah they so deeply craved. They let their materialistic, self-centered worldview sit on top of the evidence they collected. It is very important for us to cast those aside. The only preconceived notions we should hold are that Scripture is inerrant (verifiable and testable, but once proven, held onto as the foundation of our search) and that God created the heavens and the earth (also verifiable and testable through science and Scripture). Then, we let Scripture shape us. We’ll still have minor issues, but the important thing is to cast off the traditions and things we have been taught by mostly well-intentioned people who came before us.

    Because reality is consistent and logical, there is only one reality. Thus, absolute truth exists. And, because we have decent senses to observe the world, we can understand that absolute truth pretty well through evidence. People arriving at different conclusions does not mean there are multiple answers. It means fewer people are correct. Again, at best, only one worldview is correct. The ones that are closer to reality MUST trump the ones that are farther away if we desire to arrive at a decent understanding of the world. Thankfully, Biblically-based Christianity has a strong correlation to what is observed int he world and through research for the evidence appears to be the best worldview.

    At a conference this past week, I heard an impressive speaker talk about Chinos. Chino is short for Christian in name only. Throughout history, there has never been a major society where the majority of people were Christians. The US has never been there. Europe in the Middle Ages was far from this. In both, most self-identified as Christian but did not live a life of discipleship to Christ. A Christian who does not follow Christ is more common than a devout disciple of Jesus. Jesus told us this was the case when He said the road to Hell is wide and many follow after it. The road to Heaven is narrow and many do not. Moreover, He said many will call out “Lord, Lord”, but Jesus will reject them because He never knew them. There are many who claim to be Christian but do not follow the precepts of Scripture. They deny the Bible as authoritative. They reject Jesus as the only way, despite His clear statements to that effect. It is our job to convince them of their error. THAT is the major difference between ISIS and Islamic terror groups. They convert or you are put to the sword. Christians spread the Gospel without the use of violence. It’s all about ideas. That is not to say we are not controversial. Jesus was incredibly controversial! But, we are to convey the controversial truths with confidence, kindness and humility.

    I hope this helps. Let me know if this spawns more questions. I am running out of time, so I hope to help others out before I have to go back to work on Monday.

    Dave

  • Al Cruise

    Inerrancy leads to tribal fundamentalism regardless the faith. Tribalism can only survive by domination over others. Here is something interesting. They say Isis has let people live if they convert to their beliefs. There are archived documents of incidents when gangs of white conservative Christian men went out and killed black men just to send a message. Some of these black men pleaded that they were Christians too, only to be murdered in cold blood. These acts were done under the authority of an inerrant Bible.

  • Ike

    The prophet Jesus in Islam is not the same as the more than a prophet Yahshua in Christianity either, because that Islamic prophet Jesus never died on the cross, but merely swooned. Does not seem to be the Lord and Saviour at all.

  • Dave L

    To us, no. In relation to an eternal future, yes. If you have your eyes on eternity, 2000 years is, well two blinks of an eye to God, according to Scripture.

  • Ike

    No, they were done under the self ascribed authority of wicked white
    men who were using the Bible as a smokescreen for their wilful, very
    personal sins. Like Yahshua said, by their fruits you shall know them.

  • seashell

    The only preconceived notions we should hold are that Scripture is inerrant (verifiable and testable, but once proven, held onto as the foundation of our search) and that God created the heavens and the earth (also verifiable and testable through science and Scripture).

    Dave, none of these is verifiable or testable, where faith is given as the a priori hypothesis. Therefore, not scientific and certainly not universal. Furthermore, in the biblical world view, where persistent denial of God and disobedience is the greatest evil, just substitute Allah for God to find the Koranic world view of extremist Muslims.

  • Dave L

    So, an aloof arbitrary deity that offers salvation to those who might do good deeds and who tells Muhammad to spread Islam by the sword is the same God that continually attempted to reconcile with His people creating multiple covenants to provide salvation to the point of sending His Son to die for us? Have you read the Qu’ran? There are similarities in origin, but they are not the same. They ae too divergent in description, action and thought. It would be like me saying you and Popvaditeccleiae are the same person because you both met on this one blog article. The logic is spurious.

    I encourage you to look at James 3, especially the first verse. Please be careful. You’re digging a hole for yourself by overlaying a secular humanistic mindset over top your study of the Bible.

  • Investigator

    “Any reference to “God” in the monotheistic sense (whatever religion is talking about him) must refer to the same entity, as by definition there can only be one of him.”

    I completely disagree.

    If I refer to ianin lovejoy and claim that person is the 7′ tall woman who wrestles alligators, I am obviously NOT referring to you. There are many Jesus’ in the world. There is the Jesus of the Bible, the Jesus of Mormonism (sexual off-spring of a big god and the Virgin Mary, spirit brother of Lucifer the Devil), the Jesus of the spiritists, Jesus of the Jehovah’s Witness, Jesus of the Muslims, and perhaps dozens of other Jesus’ appealed to be various cults, kooks, and crazies. They are NOT the same Jesus and simply claiming that a monotheistic God is the same as in every other monotheistic religion is just plain false.

    See 2 Cor 11:4 “…and preaches a different Jesus other than the one we preached…”

    If by your statement you mean there really is only one being who by nature is God, then I completely agree. But the Muslim God is NOT the God of the Bible.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    I never said what Muslims believe about God (or Jesus) is correct, or compatible with Christianity, only that when a Christian talks about God and Muslim talks about God they are talking about the same, not different, beings (and “Allah” is just “God” in Arabic).

  • TeDeumLaudamus

    If you hate the United States so much, why don’t you leave? It’s pretty clear you aren’t loyal any more.

  • Dave L

    Hi Seashell,

    You may not find the evidence compelling enough, but there is evidence to make the cases for biblical inerrancy or else there would not be volumes on the topic. Moreover, the existence of a god is evident in Big Bang cosmology. A timeless, spaceless, sentient cause created something from nothing. The steps from theism to Christian theism is based on the verifiable data filling the Bible. Again, volumes are written on the topic. There’s a huge difference between not believing the evidence is compelling and saying there is no evidence to verify or test.

    Christianity and Mormonism are unique in that they provide texts with significant amounts of data that can be verified. The difference between these two is that Mormonism has been refuted repeatedly (through mitochondrial genetic testing, archaeology and historical studies). Christianity has not. Evidence for the resurrection of Jesus refutes all possible explanations aside from two: Jesus was an alien with incredible technology or Jesus was who He said He was – God. Gary Habermas and others have written on this topic extensively.

    Moreover, science is based on faith as much as religion is. How many people have directly observed scientific truths? They take it on faith that the experiments are valid and repeatable. Faith devoid of evidence is blind faith. Most religions rely on this. Christianity is different in this regard. This is not to say that many do not accept it blindly. It is to say that the evidence is there to mine. Many have mined it. And, unlike Mormonism, it is consistently verified through tests.

    I hope this helps.
    Dave

  • Al Cruise

    It was a white conservative Christian faith with millions of adherents that sponsored this type of behaviour, believing it was justified through bible inerrancy. I suggest you read some of archived sermons , and there are many, from southern conservative churches.

  • Herm

    Dave, thank you for giving me so much of your time! This is helping lots.

    Two verses Luke 14:26, 27 seem to needle a lot of my friends maybe you can help me explain it to them. Does not the word disciple mean student or pupil? If it does how do we apply this to Matthew 23:8-12 assuming Jesus is the only teacher? Does this really apply now or we don’t have disciples of Jesus anymore?

    You started this and I need to take advantage of your expertise as long as you let me. Maybe a little bit longer and I’ll get out of your hair.

    Herm

  • Dave L

    Hi Herm,

    No problem!

    Luke 14:26-27 needles a lot of people. First, and a little off topic, the love hate dynamic in this verse is a Hebrew idiom. As I mentioned earlier, literal interpretation is a problem with verses like these. We are to honor our fathers and mothers, not hate them. Hate, in the Luke passage, means to love less. It’s a Jewish idiom. The idea is that we are to put Jesus first in our lives. This does not mean that we are to give up everything material and sit reading our Bible all day. We are to be in the world, but not of the world. The same concept is conveyed here. If we do not have a Christian worldview, meaning seeing the world through the precepts of Scripture, then we are not being Jesus’ disciple. Jesus’ teachings fulfill OT passages and link back to the OT. They also pervade the NT. Thus, we should focus on Scripture and pray frequently. Because our salvation is a free gift based on faith through grace, we are free to work. This is what Paul meant about working out our salvation. We are to share our love with the world and to point them to God. Charity without the Gospel is useless. It’s giving a man a fish without teaching him to fish. The Gospel without charity is teaching a man to fish where there is no water. The two together go hand in hand. This is discipleship. Constantly refining our lives to adhere to Christ’s example in the Scriptures. Jesus is our only teacher. Per the last passages you asked about, Jesus and God are one and in one another. We are in Christ because Holy Spirit lives in us. We’re to listen to the still small voice inside of us and not conforming to the world. A lot of what I see in this thread is the sad situation where many Christians have been affected by the world. We are to work in the world, working out what we learn through our relationship with Jesus while not picking up the concepts constantly taught by society. We are to change society through sharing the Gospel in word and deed. We do still have disciples. I do not believe we still have apostles despite some Christian leaders calling themselves that. But, we certainly do have disciples. That is because we have His Word and the indwelling of Holy Spirit.

    I felt like this rambled a bit, but there’s a lot to say on the topic and passages of Scripture kept popping into my head as I wrote. The bottom line is that we are to act based on biblical precepts. Our decisions should focus on loving God and loving our neighbor as ourselves. This does NOT mean loving them in the way society deems appropriate, as I think this blog post mixes up. Secular humanists have greatly perverted the idea of love in many ways, but the way I am thinking of is that love means accepting the evil deeds that conflict with the Bible’s teachings that other people do.

    Let me know if this answered your question.

    Dave

  • Herm

    Perhaps you didn’t read the title of the article that this comment thread is related to. I thought your consideration of biblical inerrancy might help to discuss your premise that “we find this several times of God commanding followers to kill infidels in the OT”. If there are truly inconsistencies that you’re concerned about and the Bible is truly incapable of being wrong then what you ask is inexplicable by definition. If you don’t find anything inconsistent then we discuss how you see this to be so. I’m hoping it is the latter so I can learn from you. Your call.

  • We’re not disagreeing. The text says Israel.

  • Herm

    Okay Dave, there you did it you’ve made me wonder about something else. You seemed to speak as though the Gospel (good message, right?) is the Bible (New Testament?). What gospel was Jesus speaking of in Mark 13:10 and was written as preached throughout Acts and Romans when Acts and Romans plus the New Testament wasn’t even written yet?

    Somehow you got so caught up with Scripture popping in your head, which I totally appreciate, that I don’t think you addressed Luke 14:27. What exactly does picking up our cross mean?

    Thank you!!!

    Herm

  • That’s pretty interesting, considering the early church fathers consistently put forth interpretations that would never fly under the Chicago Statement of Inerrancy.

    Sola Scriptura most definitely does not require inerrancy, and Sola Scriptura was not a slogan of the Reformation – that was a later characterization of their views.

    But, anyway, here’s Calvin on Genesis:

    http://postbarthian.com/2014/01/27/calvin-on-genesis-1-as-an-accommodation-to-the-ordinary-custom-of-men/

    And errors being in the original manuscripts:

    http://postbarthian.com/2014/05/26/john-calvin-believed-original-autographs-bible-errors/

    I also recommend this study on the history of inerrancy which chronicles Protestant Scholasticism creating inerrancy over and against the Reformers:

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1579102131/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=1579102131&linkCode=as2&tag=thepost0b-20&linkId=7AX4HW35LXCKWUJA

  • andre_lefebvre

    Hi Benjamin,

    You wrote: “Just as I said that ISIS forces us to rethink hell, I also say that the violence we see occurring in Islam should force us to rethink biblical inerrancy.”

    OK, no problem here. I agree that there are many things said and done today that should compel us to reconsider the doctrine of inerracy, as well as the Church’s faith in that doctrine – and how we, Christians, live and relate to the world in a way that represents the message and commission Yeshua left us with.

    It’s been a schizophrenic exercise for long enough to try and “reconcile” in our minds and discourse, the obviously dichotomous commands and deeds of the OT, with the commands and deeds found in the teachings of the Apostles.

    Maybe radical Islam mirrors radical Christianity? In a way it forces us to consider that we actually may not be as enlightened or civilized as we think we are. We may be closer to “Crusaders” stock than we wish we were. We may have the upper hand militarily one day, or we may end up in a world ultra-populated by Muslims. And democracy will also play in their favour, and who will be there to stop their radical criminals? Our own radical criminals?

    I don’t know the solution, but I do read stories in the OT where Israel’s enemies were called away, stricken by fear and panic and killed one another, where the earth opened up, fire fell from heaven, the sea opened and then closed shut, trapping her enemies, etc.

    I see great benefits in re-examining the doctrine of Bible inerrancy, maybe it would prove to bring freedom and common sense to millions of Christians and give them the freedom to question the teachings of men and women who tied them on their backs as burdens.

    My children can talk to me about anything and question anything – why would be deprive ourselves of this freedom with our heavenly Father?

    It’s hard to not have to deal with the polarization of society into two majors groups holding and exercising secular power. But I think we should resist that mould and find our own equilibrium: (warning: cliché coming) it’s not either or, but both and.

    Have you expanded on this anywhere? I would like to read more.

    Cheers,

    Andre

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    I did and to be honest, I think you’re only interested in changing topics (from challenging Corey’s position to visiting my reasons for biblical inerrancy) because you do not want to answer my question or see the point I’m getting at here.

    The reason why I point these instances out is because those who agree with the inerrant position would have to find an explanation of these instances by either (1) claiming these were added as exaggerated elements to the texts—which would mean that some of these elements simply did not happen or (2) claim these authors were under some grand misunderstanding–which would mean these have misconstrued the message.

    In either the former or the latter examples, the burden of proof would have to lay on Corey’s camp to show that there is an alleged error in the text.

  • Dave L

    Hi Herm,

    The Gospel is most succinctly laid out in 1 Cor 15:1-21. Written after Jesus taught, as is all of the NT, but still the best description of the Gospel in one place. To amplify it, I think these three passages summarize the gist of the Gospel: 1 Cor 15:1-21, Eph 2:8-10 and Matt 22:36-40. The Gospel was in the process of being revealed in Mark 13 when Jesus spoke. In Mark 14:58, Jesus revealed the key of tearing down this temple and rebuilding it in 3 days.

    Sorry for glossing over the second half of the passage in Luke. The Christian life is a sacrifice. We are becoming bondservants to God. We are denying ourselves. We are following God. Lk 9:23 speaks of this as well. Matt 16:24, 27 ties picking up his cross as work and rewards for our work. Matt 11:28-30 is another link in the explanation. Here, Jesus used a different analogy of the yoke and explicitly ties it to learning from Him. Thus, the sacrifice of the personal will and following Jesus’ precepts daily (Lk 9:23) is the definition of discipleship. We are to deny the world and become part of the counter-culture of Christianity. When Christianity looks too much like the world, we need to have the hair on the backs of our necks standing up.

    Hopefully, this was less rambling. :)
    Dave

  • Margot Fernandez

    You ain’t never been righter, unfortunately.

  • Margot Fernandez

    1. God never does anything but good.
    2. God never interferes with human freedom.
    3. God does not incur “collateral damage” or unforeseen consequences.
    4. God does not interfere with the normal processes of nature.
    5. God does not have to correct his work, i. e., create the human race and then go back and destroy it.
    6. God’s nature is pure, just, unconditional love.

    If Jesus were to answer your question, here is what I think he would say. I wrote it.

    “We stand before the King of Kings, who is perfectly good, just, righteous and powerful. Our God has imparted to us the rules for living the kind of life he intended for us from the time human beings came into existence.

    “But we have misunderstood the nature of our God, because he is more than we have realized. God is not only good, but he is loving. He is not only just, he is fair. He is not only righteous, he is merciful. He is not only powerful, but he is compassionate.”

    “What we need to do is prepare for the coming of this righteous and loving God, who will confront and defeat the powers of evil. Whenever this happens, he ought to find us living the way he wants us to, which in essence is loving each other and doing the right thing.

    “No one is above another person in God’s kingdom. Everyone ought take care of each other without regard to rank.

    “Religious tenets were made by us and they serve to make us better, not to oppress and enslave us, or give us excuses to mistreat others.

    “Turn away from worldly powers and struggles, give your hearts and minds to our loving God, and wait for everything to come to pass in his good time.”

  • Herm

    I do not agree with the inerrant position. My explanation is that we have plenty of published claims of “god told me to do it” today. Why would this be any different when there was no way for the general populous to trust but verify. If you notice the covenant was not with the people but with the Levites who were responsible for the Tabernacle that contained the Holy of Holies where the Spirit of God spoke with only the high priest. Does this help? What do you think and why do you pit camp against camp?

  • Bones

    Or as I was told when I pointed out this exact same thing, Ben.

    “You can’t compare God’s righteous judgement with ISIS.”

    Well actually we can.

  • Herm

    Dave,

    Much less rambling but please know you’re always welcome to ramble with me.

    Where was the temple rebuilt?

    Seems to me those were only accusing witnesses in Mark 14:58 that were discredited or at least mixed stories.

    Relative to the gospel the scripture you sent me out to, right from the top, seems to separate as two different entities the scripture and the gospel preached: “Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve.” 1 Corinthians 15:1-5 … am I missing something?

    Would this be an example of preaching the gospel possibly available to us? “After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.” Acts 4:31

    So, if I hear you right you are saying Jesus’ students are not called to pick up their cross, in the example of Jesus, prepared to die that their enemy might live, right? Oh, that brings up another scripture thought, why was it significant that the curtain was torn top to bottom when Jesus gave up His spirit?

    I had thought that because Jesus, as a carpenter, knew the manufacture of a yoke that He was referring to Him being in the lead as the strongest and most experienced as we shared the load of serving the will of God. I will consider what you just shared.

    I must thank you so very much for hanging in there with me!

    Love,

    Herm

  • Reynaldo De Leon

    I know you don’t agree; this has been well established. But we have plenty of ‘God told me to do it’ instances in the Old Testament by the same God, but to a lot of religious authorities (e.g., Samson, David, Jehu, Elijah, Elisha, Samuel, Gideon, etc.).

    The point I’m getting at is that the instance of Moses wiping out the Canaanites is not an isolated event in and of itself. Corey would be quite correct on the assertion; however, this same God had appeared multiple times in the Old Testament and dictated the same orders to several other persons.

    What I’m trying to point out that the same Triune God in the New Testament would be contradicting Himself in the Old Testament (assuming these events are true). However, if Corey’s Camp is going to deny these things ever took place, the question I have for him would be this–on what basis do you make this out to be in error? And based on what?

    I hope this helps.

    Perhaps it’s best to correspond via facebook or email?

  • Dave L

    Hi Herm,

    Jesus was speaking of Himself as the temple that would be destroyed and rebuilt in 3 days. The Temple in the OT was God’s house. It remained until the Roman invasion in AD 70. Jesus was crucified on Friday. Friday, Saturday and Sunday, He was in the tomb until He rose on Sunday, the third day.

    1 Cor 15 is Paul reminding the people of Corinth (Greece northwest of Athens) of the Gospel message. I’m not sure if that answers your question. Can you rephrase it?

    Acts 2 and 4 speak about Holy Spirit being poured out on believers. Acts 2 was Pentecost, the first of these events. Acts 4 was a monumental sermon Peter and Paul preached (mostly Peter) and the result was many being saved and immediately indwelt by Holy Spirit.

    Regarding the temple curtain, the temple curtain was the division between the Holy of Holies and the rest of the Temple courts. Only the High Priest could go in once per year to offer the sacrifice. From the building of the Tabernacle (mobile temple) after the Jews left Egypt (around 1440 BC) until the last temple destruction in AD 70, God set apart an area inside their center of worship to be a veiled area set apart for His residence. It was symbolic, as God the Father is spirit. He has no body. The curtain separated His presence from the people despite Him being near as a constant reminder. When the curtain was torn, it symbolized the results of Jesus’ sacrifice and humanity’s direct access to God through Jesus. The High Priest was no longer needed. This is where Catholic and Protestant theology separates, as Catholics believe we still need a priest whereas Protestants believe in the priesthood of all believers. (1 Pet 2:5-9).

    Christians are called to die to the self. To die to sin (Rom 6:11) We are a living sacrifice (Rom 12:1). In the OT, the Jews sacrificed animals that previsioned Jesus’ sacrifice. After Jesus’ sacrifice, we are a living sacrifice. Dead to sin and alive in Christ. This is the cross or yoke to bear.

    While Jesus was a carpenter and likely did build yokes, the idea of farming was very prominent in the region. Today, it’s desert. Then, it was much more vibrant. Climate change over the centuries expanded the deserts in the region.

    I’m rapidly approaching the end of the night for me, but I’d like to offer a great site that can help with questions. When I hit a tough one, I often go there.
    gotquestions.org

    Dave

  • Ike

    Ah allah! He is the moon good (compare with the only Living God, who created everything) who married the moon goddess and begat three daughters – al-lat, al -uzza and manat. allah is a pre -Islamic name, corresponding to the Babylonian god bel (Encyclopedia of Religion). allah was worshipped right where the Kaaba now resides. Hardly the same as Yahweh, the only true Living God.

  • Rick Stevens

    Except MOST Christians (including me) don’t make the exclusionary claims you describe. Nor most Muslims either, for that matter.

    So for those in those camps, both subgroups who insist on the “one true interpretive path” views are both wrong, and that incorrect view doesn’t really judge nor condemn with religion, given the diversity of views within each.

  • Rick Stevens

    I am Christian, I just appear to believe different things than you. Which is rather the point.

    You are presenting a narrow strict-constructionist view of Islam that most of its followers don’t literally follow. This is an argument against the fundamentalism in both religious groups, not against the whole body of believers in either.

    But then, the reductionist way you present your faith above (no offense intended, I understand what you’re getting at) doesn’t square with the faith, believers and even history I know. It’s simply broader and more diverse. As it is within Islam, if you care to talk to believers on their own terms and not the cartoon caricatures offered by some evangelicals.

    I hope that helps.

  • I don’t live in the USA. I’m British but am just as scathing about my own country. If you know your Bible you will understand that God holds all countries to account yet considers none as significant in their own right. Yet many American Christians are convinced that America is special which is a dangerous myth and, in their eyes, places it above reproach. The same is true of Israel. The tribe of Israel may hold a special place in God’s heart but the state of Israel must be a stench in God’s nostrils.

    The only sensible position to take is one of pessimism with regard to the human heart and mistrust of all governments but hope because God’s image is in each one of us. Hope and love are the strongest forces in the universe but we must not underestimate the darkness in each of us.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    No. “Allah” is a contraction of the “al” the definite article in Arabic, and “liah”, “God”. It is not a name at all and is also used in Arabic by Jews and Christians to refer to God.

  • Danny Galen

    You have confused Law and Gospel.

  • Ike

    allah was dérived from allahu the moon god/idol worshipped around the Kaaba area. The Arabic tribes had no Word for the only Living God for one reason – they did not believe in Him and had multiple idols. That idea came from Muhammed and his followers

  • Dave L

    You are 100% correct about most who identify as Christians. Most who ID as Christians ignore what Jesus said when He said I AM the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father except through Me. This is too harsh for most who ID as Christians today. Most who ID as Christians don’t want to offend so they cut out Jn 14:6, Acts 4:12, 1 Cor 15:12-17 and many other verses to syncretize secular humanism into their brand of Christianity. I hope they are right, but I see no evidence of it being so. I would love for everyone to be OK. For there to be a huge Cumbaya in Heaven regardless of belief would be awesome! I imagine God would have to destroy free will at that point (a la the Body Snatchers or the Matrix) to keep everyone in line in Heaven, but it would mean many in my family that rejected Jesus would be there to greet me. That would be awesome, but as I said, there is no compelling evidence to support the mix of secular humanism and Christianity. In fact, the evidence supports what I’ve said above.

    You are 100% INcorrect about Muslims. Having been to Jordan, Kuwait and UAE (for business, not on a mission) and having studied Islam in both structured and unstructured arenas. Muslims are consistent in their clarity that belief in Jesus as God is the worst sin. Shirk is the practice of setting up “partners” next to Allah. This is their unforgivable sin.

  • Jens Bech

    Christendom, chockingly to american Judeo-christians, began as a “Jesus Only” movement. Jesus said “Go and make disciples of all etnic groups, baptizing them in MY NAME..” The addition off: “The Father, Son and Holy Spirit” is a later addition!
    It was not in the bible of Euseb before “Nicea”.
    In that perspective Christianity, with it’s “Love” is far above stoning and atrocities.
    The later amendment of the Jewish “Judeo tradition” and the implementation of ” The patriarcal revengeful “Father-God” with etnic cleansning and stoning, stole the innocence from Christianity!
    The “Old style Judeo-Father” was implemnted by the council of Bishops in 325 AD. In Nicea.

  • Ike

    Spot on

  • Rick Stevens

    Hermeneutics.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    As previously stated, “Allah” is a contraction of the words “al”, “the” and “ilah” “god” (there is a typo in my previous post). “Ilah” is the generic word for “god”: by the same argument you are a worshipper of Thor because worshippers of Thor used the word “God” to describe him, all Arabic-speaking Christians and Jews are worshippers of a moon god too because they use “Allah” for God, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all modern-day Jews are worshippers of the gods of Canaan, Babylon and Syria because they referred to God using the Hebrew word “El” (“God”) when it was also used to refer to those gods, and St Paul was a worshipper of Zeus because he uses the word “theos” for God which was also used of Zeus by greek-speakers.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    Shockingly, Jesus was Jewish, his followers were Jewish, he taught from the Jewish scriptures and expressly referred to God as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
    Shockingly, the doctrine of the Trinity is not a Jewish doctrine so how its development is part of the Jewish tradition is beyond me.
    Shockingly Eusebius refers to the old testament as ‘the Canonical Scriptures of the Old Testament, undisputed among the Hebrews;’ and again,’the acknowledged Scriptures of the Old Testament;’ and, lastly, ‘the Holy Scriptures of the Old Testament.’
    http://www.bible-researcher.com/eusebius.html

  • Thanks for your answer about the love referred to in the two great commandments. Have you considered the ten commandments? The first four tell us how to love God and the last six tell us how to love man. Let’s just look at one: thou shalt not lie. If all the people in the world would suddenly decide today to keep this command most everything would change and for the better immediately. In this way you could say love would fulfill this law. In this way you could say love dispels fear because when you stop lying you have nothing to fear about what you have said and done in the past. Accepting Jesus is an action made in a moment of time; with that acceptance comes responsibility in the future to carry out that love.

  • And Elohim (and for that matter, Isra-el) comes from one of the chief gods of the Canaanite pantheon – El, who had a consort and shrines to her. Do we worship the same god as the Canaanites? What happened to his consort?

    OR can we agree that past etymologies and trading of mythologies has little to say about current belief and practice?

  • What about Psalm 82, where God is said to judge over the other gods in the “great assembly?” How does that sentiment make sense if the author does not believe there are gods in a great assembly?

  • I think you’re confusing “interpret differently” with “ignore” and “cut out.” Christians who think differently than you about Islam are not editing the Scriptures; they are disagreeing with your reading.

    You would get a lot further in dialogue with other Christians if you assumed they were faithful readers who saw things differently than disingenuous redactors just crossing out anything that’s inconvenient.

  • Aside from all the theological errors in your response, the first one was darkly humorous to me – the fact that you associate a concern with human trafficking as being controlled by secular concerns and, as you say, “not a mission field.”

    Being concerned about theological purity while being cavalier about the oppressed and wounded is pretty much the opposite of Jesus’ ministry.

  • I have to admit, I have a sort of grudging respect for people confronted with things like the Canaanite genocide, and rather than try to explain it, just go, “Yeah? So?”

    But what I want to respond to is the accusation that people who have different theological viewpoints than you do so because the “truth” is uncomfortable for them. I’m an annihilationist for exegetical reasons, and I think the common Byzantine view of Hell is based largely on a lack of understanding of the Jewish roots of the New Testament and, in some cases, geography.

    If I thought the Bible maintained the traditional view of Hell, then I would say that and make my peace with it, but I believe it doesn’t through the process of taking the Bible seriously enough to exegete. Some Christians are universalists. I do not agree with this position, but if they have good exegetical reasons for their position, I respect it. What I don’t do is accuse them of retreating to a more comfortable theology just because of secularism or their own personal preferences. I often wonder if people hold to the traditional view of Hell because of their own personal preferences, but that’s uncharitable.

    The same applies to views of homosexuality, although I thought it was a little revealing that your main points of contention with what you perceive as liberalism are Hell and being gay. But that aside, once again, Christians who are working through the homosexuality issue are doing so on the basis of exegesis, not because they want to be accepted by the homosexual community or what have you.

    A hundred or so years ago, our theological forefathers were arguing for slavery on exegetical grounds. It was perfectly clear to them that the Scriptures allowed for slavery within certain guidelines of conduct – as clear to them as Hell or homosexuality is to you. Crystal. And they called the abolitionists liberals who were just twisting or eliminating inconvenient Scriptures to go along with the cultural tide.

    Well, today, virtually no Christians would say that. I’m not trying to say that everything we think is clear will be overturned someday, but I am saying that our history of interpretation should moderate our level of dogmatism and -especially- our critiques of people who disagree with us.

  • If physical resurrection is the only explanation that suffices, then why was Jesus’ disciples first reaction that someone must have taken the body, and it took angels to convince them otherwise?

  • Herm

    “But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth.” … is the only guideline you will ever need to know the truth eternally.

    Matthew 22:34-40 is the Law written in stone by the hand of God. Please read each the Decalogue and Jesus teaching side by side. Not the Pentateuch for it is tainted by additional laws that do not match both the Word and the Tablets.

    Accepting to become a disciple of the Messiah needs only your recognition of Him alive and your choice to abide only in Him as your teacher. Jesus is the only relationship that offers eternal life, inherited as a child of God as His sister and brother, to the Samaritan and the Jew alike. Jesus tells us, even in your four gospels if not in your heart and mind, that the righteous religious priest and Levite, both teachers of the law, who passed Him by will not enter into heaven. I have ultimate trust in His Word over that of any religious organization protecting the will of teachers of the law in the same spirit of that who called for His execution in the name of God.

    Divine love is carried out by carrying your cross that you may love your enemy, yourself, your neighbor and your Lord God in Jesus’ example and by His continued teaching.

    The Holy Spirit has been available to all who acknowledge Him since the curtain was torn top to bottom before the Holy of Holies. We, as mankind, have had longer to get to know the Spirit of truth personally and really, not locked inside some religious order of separation, than from the time Moses was born to Jesus’ birth. By the numbers most have squandered that opportunity graced them by God.

    “I tell you, whoever publicly acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God. But whoever disowns me before others will be disowned before the angels of God. And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. “When you are brought before synagogues, rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend yourselves or what you will say, for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.” Luke 12:8-12

    To sum up, so in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

    In all love for both you and my family of God I am not accusing you of lying for by your fruit you do not know the Spirit of truth intimately and dynamically in you and you in Him to be able to lie about Him. You test my truth by 2,000 year old writings that by whose calendar today we are 5,775 years now since one year before the creation of our spirit, in God’s image, that was breathed into these mortal carbon base shells. Mankind has since found that all the cosmos does not revolve around our puny little not so flat planet stuck out where we can see but not touch the overwhelming magnificence of our Creator’s hand. It might be a good time for you to get to know God truly in your heart and mind and you in all of Their hearts and minds bound as one in love. Until then you are missing the mark of truth.

    Love you and bless you for your time trying to help me. Thank you.

  • No, those men actually believed they were following the bible and God’s truth.

  • Exactly, Phil. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but by me.” I don’t take that to mean everyone has to be a Christian. I take it to mean that, being God and having crushed all sin once and for all, Jesus is the final decider as to the fate of all people. It’s a different interpretation from Dave L’s interpretation. But certainly not ignored.

  • That is one interpretation, yes.

  • Thanks Herm.

    I appreciate your answers as this is how I can learn where you are coming from so I can respond with something you can relate to. So far i have learned a lot.

    Again, you state getting to know God in heart and mind but do not provide the path to do so. You seem to be saying that the bible is not the source of truth and that the religions of the world separate us from God? I agree about the religions of the world.

    However, the bible claims to be the Word of God and the Word is the same Jesus you write about. As I mentioned, and you did not disagree, Jesus quoted from the bible many, many times and from nothing else on earth. Why do you feel Jesus quoted from the bible if He did not endorse it?

    Have a great day!

  • Herm

    Danny, how so? Please elaborate…

  • Taz Bestway

    Near enough!

  • Taz Bestway

    True Christians do not interpret scripture. Interpretation belongs to God by Holy Spirit.

    “——no prophecy of Scripture springs from any private interpretation. For prophecy was at no time brought by man’s will, but men spoke from God as they were borne along by holy spirit.” (2 Peter 1:19-21)

    The problem on this site is that you all belong to different apostate versions of Christendom’s many sects mainly by what is called accident of birth. I would lack godly fear if I presumed to tell the Almighty how to run his business.

  • Taz Bestway

    (1 Corinthians 1:10) . . .Now I urge you, brothers, through the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you should all speak in agreement and that there should be no divisions among you, but that you may be completely united in the same mind and in the same line of thought. . .

  • Herm

    Thank you Bob for your grace.

    To answer your last question first, Jesus had one and only one ministry, called by the Father, so He quoted from all that His audience would understand to recognize that He was in fact the Messiah spoken of in their sacred book. The Tabernacle and the Decalogue were the only guaranteed in the Spirit of the God Jesus represented to them, by His example and words.

    My words are inspired by the Spirit of truth that my immaturity of ignorance and skill cannot convey to do God justice. I just in all honestly shared with you the word of God in the same Spirit as inspired the Bible. Please, share with me the texts you say that the word of God is the Bible and not the Holy Spirit.

    Mahatma Gandhi and the Dalai Lama are good examples of knowing the Spirit of God by their fruit more so than the vast majority of students of the Bible.

    “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”
    Galatians 5:22-23

    How?

    “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” Luke 11:9-10 … everyone with no mention of a bible.

    ““What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”

    He answered, “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

    “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”” Luke 10:26-28

    To the Jewish nation He said relative to their law,

    “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.”
    Matthew 7:12

    To the Samaritan women not under the Jewish law He said,

    “Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” John 4:21-24

    The covenant with the Levite authority occupying the Moses seat ceased when the curtain was torn from top to bottom.

    May your day be blessed!

    Love,

    Herm

  • Taz Bestway

    Total utter blasphemous ruubish

  • Taz Bestway

    There is no such thing as a white Christian conservative faith.

    The twelve apostles were all Jewish. They were commanded:

    19 Go, therefore, and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all the things I have commanded you. And look! I am with you all the days until the conclusion of the system of things.” Matt 28

    Only the ignorant claim that the bible is inerrant because they are haters of God

  • Iain Lovejoy

    Provided you believe that Jesus (whatever else he is) was an actual historical figure who really lived in a particular place at a particular time, then any reference to Jesus is a reference to that person. If you don’t understand stand that referring to “the Jesus of the Mormons” or “the Jesus of the Muslims” or whatever is a figure of speech you obviously have some difficulty understanding how language works.
    As previously stated, Muslims specifically affirm that when they talk about God they are talking about the entity referred to as such in the Bible, and are clear that in doing so they are referring to the infinite eternal being outside the ordinary universe responsible for its creation. Since that is the same entity to which Christians refer when they refer to “God” then they are plainly referring to the same thing, 7ft tall alligator women notwithstanding.
    If you think God is the god of your own particular team and no-one else is allowed to share him, you have mistaken the nature of God.
    [Edited by author to remove rather graceless sarcasm at end. Sorry. ]

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    iain, your last paragraph, screams out a lack of grace towards Investigator. I had really liked the way the discussion had turned to scholarly thought. For some time it had gotten away from the playground filled with childishness. I know its fun to go there. Is that where you want to go? Cause we can if you want. I would rather, humbly, bow to the Dave L/Investigator, and even Herm. When he is being scholarly types and just read them. They are very interesting and good. What shall it be, Bra?

  • Iain Lovejoy

    You’re probably right, not in the highest tradition of philosophical debate. I’ll delete it.

  • Taz Bestway

    Ok Andy
    Try Exodus 6:3 Psalm 83:18 Isa 12:2, 26:4 KJV

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Wow, thank you for the example of maturity you just gave me . May God truly bless you with joy and health.

  • Taz Bestway

    Exodus 6:3 KJV
    The term Allah is arabic for ‘The God’
    It is a title like LORD but not a Name like Jehovah

    It was a 13th century Catholic priest who translated he Hebrew Yahweh or YHWH to the English Jehovah

  • If your reference to Ianin Lovejoy includes many accurate details besides the two you mentioned, then you could very well be talking about the same person, but having made significant errors of detail.

    If I refer to Elvis Wesley, the famous rock artist of the 1950s-70s, the assumption would be that I made an error on his name, not that I’m referring to a second famous rock artist whose name was actually Elvis Wesley.

  • Each human mind has only itself and its understanding of the world with which to read the Bible. You believe that your reading and understanding of the words are the only correct and true understanding of the words. That is fine. Blessings, brother.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    Muslims (as I understand it) regard God as unnamable, and refuse to put any name to him at all (other than titles such as “the most merciful” etc) in much the same way as they refuse to represent him in art. They take monotheism far, far more seriously than Christians in just about every possible way.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    Thanks for that. Ironically, he got my name wrong, too…

  • Whups. If I’d just scrolled down, I could have copied and pasted, too…

  • If not that, then can we at least bring back debt forgiveness every seven years?

  • In many cases, it’s just plain authoritarianism. It’s not meant to be attractive, it just is. God has the biggest stick, therefore he deserves worship. I’ve heard many people say that the only reason they worship God is because only he has the power over Hell.

  • Rather like how many Jews won’t write his name on any medium which could ever become tarnished or destroyed.

  • You say this is obvious, I point at the Left Behind books which end with Jesus killing people by the hundreds by quoting scripture at them. Seriously.

  • Just like how God’s version of “love” has no resemblance whatsoever to human love, which is why we use the same word to refer to both. x_x

  • Given that Jacob was also named Israel, maybe there’s some word play going on here.

  • Jeff Preuss

    I’ve actually had someone articulate to me, “Well, of course I believe in God, because — if you don’t — well, you go to Hell. So, I have to.” It wasn’t so much that this faith meant anything to them, it was “better than the alternative.”

    To me, “believing” in someone or something for fear of a punishment upon maybe getting that belief wrong is not a wondrous and amazing spiritual validation — it’s essentially submitting to a kind of bullying, and not how I view Christianity and God.

  • Speaking for myself, I would rather have eternal death than be alive but eternally suffering. Fortunately, I know neither is the case.

  • If you hear it said about one of the towns the Lord your God is giving you to live in that troublemakers have arisen among you and have led the people of their town astray, saying, “Let us go and worship other gods” (gods you have not known), then you must inquire, probe and investigate it thoroughly. And if it is true and it has been proved that this detestable thing has been done among you, you must certainly put to the sword all who live in that town. You must destroy it completely, both its people and its livestock.

    I agree, the god worshiped by the Christians is so unlike the god worshiped by the Christians. ಠ_ಠ

  • LadySunami

    Eternal life would be worse… Be it with torture or otherwise. I would enjoy a pleasant afterlife for a good long time I’m sure, but eventually I would want to stop.

  • LadySunami

    And remember the time when Allah took a covenant from the people through the Prophets, saying, ‘Whatever I give you of the Book and Wisdom and then there comes to you a Messenger, fulfilling that which is with you, you shall believe in him and help him.’ And He said, ‘Do you agree, and do you accept the responsibility which I lay upon you in this matter?’ They said, ‘We agree.’ He said, ‘Then bear witness and I am with you among the witnesses.’

    Quran 3:82

    And call to mind when We took from the Prophets their covenant, and from thee, and from Noah and Abraham, and Moses and Jesus, son of Mary, and We indeed, took from them a solemn covenant;

    Quran 33:8

    Why is it that you believe not in Allah, while the Messenger calls you to believe in your Lord, and He has already taken a covenant from you, if indeed you are believers?

    Quran 57:9

    And those who break the covenant of Allah, after having established it and cut asunder what Allah has commanded to be joined, and act corruptly in the earth, on them is the curse of Allah and they shall have a grievous abode.

    Quran 13:26

    Will you look at that! Allah making covenants with his people. It’s almost like you don’t actually know a thing about Islam…

  • I have been in some sermons like that.

  • Actually, she went to jail for contempt of court after being ordered to do her job without partiality, and refused to comply. Not the same thing. Dishonest to frame it as such, since she’d get the exact same sentence if she had, for example, refused to provide licenses to atheists.

  • The thing is, the books portray it literally, with the characters marveling at it and making connections to the sword-from-mouth verses, as Turbo Jesus majestically glides across the battlefield and drenches it in blood. Whenever he speaks a verse, people explode into gore. This is portrayed as awe-inspiring, uplifting, the greatest sign of God’s power and the one to be most respected. The protagonist feels joy and euphoria as they watch it take place.

    And then one points out that over 65 million copies of the books have been sold…

  • Investigator

    “…no other explanation other than a literal resurrection suffices…”

    No other explanation to US NOW which includes the observation of the apostles actions and indeed their actions reinforce the fact of a physical, bodily resurrection. They were smart Jewish guys and they weren’t going to buy a physical resurrection without proof anymore than we would have.

    Read the former skeptic, Frank Morrison’s “Who Moved the Stone” who began the work as a skeptic, but after studying the evidence, came to the conclusion that Christ had risen.

    I’m curious, YOU believe in the physical, bodily resurrection of Jesus right?

  • Investigator

    Thank you, I appreciate your honest answer.

  • Investigator

    “The Father, Son and Holy Spirit” is a later addition!”

    I’ve never heard this assertion before, where did you get it and why do you believe it?

  • I wish this affected me more than it did, but it’s like – I’ve got no more appalled incredulity left in me when it comes to those books or that eschatology. The well has run dry. The moral horror and stupidity has outstripped my ability to emotionally comprehend it. Their book could have Jesus shooting elephants out of his eyeballs, and I’d just be like, “Yeah, why not, whatever.” I have theological PTSD from the Left Behind books.

  • So just to get this straight, a person who believes in preventing abortion by eliminating the circumstances which make it happen, and who continually demonstrates that they value lives of any kind, should not be considered pro-life unless they seek to legislate against abortion?

  • Investigator

    “Well actually we can.”

    God knows the hearts of men. God knows what they will do in the future and what they have done in the past and why…in detail. ISIS does not.

  • Investigator

    “…white conservative Christian men …”

    Perhaps you have a broader view of what a Christian man is than does the Lord and/or you make assumptions that these men, whoever they may be, are Christians when perhaps they were not.

  • LadySunami

    Why would he need to quote scripture at them anyway? Isn’t he Jesus, aka The Word? He could say anything and said words would become scripture by virtue of him saying them.

  • Because it’s a reference to Ephesians 6:17. See also: sword drills are not seminary students training with edged weapons!

  • Ike

    However, it is not just the name but the description,
    characteristics, character, values, motives, plans etc of each of these
    idols compared to that of the only Living God. Critically and most
    importantly, none of these so called gods died and rose up to
    liberate me, you and the rest of mankind from the slavery of sin, only Yahweh in form of the Godman Yahshua did.

    Paul
    described accurately the only Living God repeatedly, so his listeners
    would be in no doubt that he was not talking about the idol zeus. thor,
    the moon god allah follows the same principles as above, so for you to
    continue to put these together in the same bracket is simply not
    sustainable.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I used to write online as the Tucson Liberal Christian Examiner. However, Examiner.com has decided to convert to a news outlet. Meanwhile, I have a Facebook page and you are welcome to drop by. I post articles there occasionally, and my friends are kind enough to follow along.

  • Margot Fernandez

    Can you read and write English correctly? You need to get someone to help you express yourself. However, from what i think I understand of your ramblings, you are mistaken on a number of points and you need to learn much, much more about Christianity.
    The early Christian Church was heavily influenced by Judaism, and later it was overwhelmed by Platonic philosophy. That was when virginity and many other ideas entered the Church. You can learn these things but you need to read some books or take some kind of class.
    You ought to be able to see that the Council of Nicaea in 325 did not introduce Judaism into Christianity. It introduced Roman ideas that were influenced by Platonism into Christianity. There is a lot more that you need to learn.

  • Margot Fernandez

    You are not under the impression that hardly anyone knows this, are you? Do you read theology at all?

  • Ryan

    “Only the ignorant claim that the bible is inerrant because they are haters of God”
    Although I agree with the first part of this statement I wouldnt judge the motives or moral character of those who hold this view dear. Just as we dont condone the actions of the radical Islam we dont condone the ignorance that takes place in the church, this does not mean that Christians who believe in the doctrine of inerrancy are God haters. I know many who hold the doctrine of inerrancy dear and who love God. Be careful making blanket statements that question the moral character of other Christians. God is the judge in the end.
    Blessings,
    Ryan

  • Margot Fernandez

    The problem that all the revealed religions share is that they have never set the Scriptures aside and simply considered the nature of God.
    If God is pure, loving goodness, then he does not hate people and throw souls into eternal torture.
    If God is pure, loving goodness he does not inflict natural catastrophes that destroy huge numbers of people, guilty and innocent alike, along with innocent animals.
    If God is pure, loving goodness, he is not a mass murder, in other words.
    Jews, Christians and Muslims have wasted millions of hours trying to rationalize some kind of enforced harmony on their Scriptures when there isn’t much agreement at all. Eventually some of the Scriptures will have to be put away and the stories will be taken for what they are.
    The incident of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah took place on June 29, 3123 B. C. E., when an asteroid passed on a random path over the Middle East.
    The Flood was the collapse of the Bosporus.
    Once we get the courage to say that some of Scripture is mistaken at best, we can begin making progress again.

  • Margot Fernandez

    But the Bible is not inerrant and the white un-Christian men were tragically wrong.

  • Margot Fernandez

    You are right up until the council of Nicaea in the Fourth Century. That was when the Roman version of Platonic philosophy overwhelmed the early Church that was moving westward from Jerusalem. My personal opinion ts that it has been mostly downhill from there.

  • Margot Fernandez

    Not if you are a monotheist. There is no God contest going on. There is only one Creator Being and everyone who believes this is relating to the same entity that is outlined in Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

  • Margot Fernandez

    What he said.

  • Margot Fernandez

    Why should it? Mohammed is said to have received his revelation and that’s how he called it.

  • Margot Fernandez

    The evolution of the religion of the Hebrew people was strongly influenced during the time they lived in Egypt. They were exposed to the influence of those who believed in the Sun Disk of the Pharaoh Akhen-Aten. As time went by the revelation to Moses meshed with the existing monotheism in Egypt and that is why we read in passing that many Egyptians left along with the Hebrews to worship the new One God.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I might add that the syllable “al” is an indicative pronoun.

  • Margot Fernandez

    Well, that’s well and good, but we don’t follow St. Paul’s teachings now. He never heard of the Virgin Birth and described Jesus as “…born of a woman, born under the Law.” He taught that all are alike in Christ Jesus. Those ideas were overwhelmed when Christianity was infested with Neo-Platonism under the Romans.

  • Margot Fernandez

    They do not hate God. They are terrorized by the God of the Old Testament, and all I will say about that right now is that there is no such thing as Old Testament Christianity.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I suggest you check out the Southern tradition that the chaplain of the local chapter of the KKK is frequently the local Baptist minister.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Ew. Glad I never bothered to pick these up.

  • I read all of them when I was younger and I’m amazed at how much of the badness I missed. The bad writing, if nothing else. This is the only book series where Chicago gets nuked and life goes on as if nothing were amiss — in Chicago.

  • Investigator

    “Ironically, he got my name wrong, too…”

    I apologize for that; it is ironic though.

  • Investigator

    “…Muslims specifically affirm that when they talk about God they are talking about the entity referred to as such in the Bible…”

    Yes, so do Mormons and so do Jehovah’s Witnesses and at least they actually USE the Bible. Muslims, Mormons, and JWs deny the trinity, and deny the divinity of Christ (more problematic to nail down with Mormons since the nature of God changed over time).

    As someone pointed out, the Jesus of Islam did not die on the cross. No death on the cross, no resurrection, no resurrection and we’re not going to be resurrected (1 Cor 15:13-22).

    Again, with the Jesus of the Bible we have the son of God, God the son. In Islam, we don’t. In Mormonism, we have the offspring of a sexual union between a big god and the Virgin Mary. These are central issues, not peripheral as with the prohibition of homosexuality.

  • Investigator

    “…Jesus is the final decider as to the fate of all people.”

    Exactly, and he said and has decided “no one” comes to the Father but by him. You can’t get there with Mohammed, or Moroni, or Charles Taze Russell, or by any other method, ONLY through Jesus.

  • Investigator

    “…being cavalier about the oppressed and wounded…”

    Such as the pre-born being butchered daily?

  • How about the several hundreds of thousands of homeless LGBT youth in America?

  • Investigator

    Homeless youth of any kind in America, not just LGBT. I am unaware, however, that there is any particular problem with homeless LGBT youth in America, I mean worse than other youth. Could you provide a link?

  • LadySunami

    You can’t be “oppressed” or “wounded” when you haven’t even got a brain. Prior to 25 weeks, there are no stable brain waves. With no brain waves there are no thoughts, no experiences, no wishes, no nothing. The fetuses don’t care whether they are born or not. They can’t care. They literally have no such capacity. Do you really want to look at the born women of the word, the ones who actually do have thoughts, feelings, experiences and hopes and tell them they don’t matter, only the fetus using their body does?

    I don’t think we should set a precedent whereby living conscious people must offer themselves as life support to the unaware whether they want to or not. I mean would you be fine with being forced to act as a coma patient’s human dialysis machine for 9 months? Even if the person in need is actually awake, we wouldn’t force another person to allow them the use of their bodies. We can and should respect each individual’s right to bodily autonomy, be they a male with good kidneys or a female who happens to be pregnant.

  • seashell

    If you had to write in Norwegian, how would you do?

    As one of the people you have attacked on here, apparently because you like to piss off people nominally on your side, may I suggest you come off your high horse and interact with the actual conversation being held and not the one in your head?

  • Iain Lovejoy

    Not at all.
    Jens Bech started his farrago of nonsense with “shockingly” (give or take a spelling error) so I assumed it would all come as a bit of a shock to him.
    I have an unfortunate tendency to be flippant.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    Yes, there are very fundamental differences between Islam and Christianity about the nature of God and even more so about Jesus; I am simply making the point that Muslims, however much they may have wrong, are still referring to the same God.
    To use your own analogy, if someone pointed at me and said “Him, Iain, that person over there, is really a 7 foot woman who wrestles alligators” they would be wrong (and probably somewhat crazy) but would still identifiably be talking about me.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    According to everything I have read it is the definite article (or being used as such) but if Arabic is anything like Hebrew then the definite article doubles up as an indicative pronoun as well. In the context “the God” makes more sense than “this God” or “that God”.

  • I’m not cavalier about that, but whatev. You should look up the tu quoque fallacy, sometime.

  • I’m not entirely sure Egypt could have been described as monotheistic. Could you point me to some sources?

  • Jeanne Fox

    Allah is not the moon god. The Qur’an says not to worship the sun or the moon.
    “Of His Signs are the night and the day, the sun and the moon. Do not prostrate yourselves to the sun or to the moon, but prostrate yourselves to Allah Who created them, if it is He you truly worship.” The Qur’an, Surah 41:37, the Majid Fakhry translation.

  • Jeanne Fox

    There was a period in Egypt’s history in which the Pharoah (Akhenaton?) ordered people to worship only Amon Ra, the sun god. After his death, Egypt returned to polytheism.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I can’t help it if you look bad. As I said, you need help in expressing yourself AFTER you learn quite a bit more about Christianity. My “high horse,” as you call it, is years of writing as the Tucson Liberal Christian Examiner, plus studying the Church for my entire adult life, plus the accredited course called Education for Ministry. I also have university degrees.
    I have certain things to contribute to a conversation about Christianity. I don’t spout proof quotes because proof quotes don’t prove anything and I am not an evangelical Christian to begin with. I am an Episcopalian and we are inclusive and tolerant.
    If I had to write in Norwegian I would write my piece in English, and then find someone who could help me translate it. I do this in Spanish, by the way, because I speak Spanish fluently.

  • Ike

    In other words, things have changed. I will be sticking with the unchanging, trustworthy Yahweh.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    You are not tolerant at all. You certainly don’t tolerate any one who disagrees with you. Your always mad, and spouting about how intelligent and educated you are. Your extremly defensive, self absorbed, and arrogant. How does that feel? “I can’t help if you look bad.”

  • seashell

    I’m not doubting your understanding of Christianity. However, your comprehension of how Disqus (the commenting system) works is faulty to an extreme. The person (me) who brought up the ‘high horse’ is not the same person that you believe misunderstands Christianity.

    Use the mouse instead of the keyboard for clues and comment AFTER you learn quite a bit more about Disqus. (From a former IT person.)

  • Jeff Preuss

    “Have you unplugged it, and plugged it back in?”

  • seashell

    LOL. There is a certain view that some people should just stop after unplugging. For the greater good, you know?

  • Realist1234

    Rather ironic for a ‘liberal’ to be criticising someone else’s understanding of Christianity. Liberalism does not reflect Christianity, but is rather a poor reflection of it.

  • Margot Fernandez

    That is completely your opinion. You are welcome to believe anything, but believing doesn’t make it so. There is such a thing as scholarship. There is such a thing as theology. Good luck with that.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I can do nothing more than click to reply. The software takes me to the comment. I reply. I click Reply and the comment appears along with identifying information. If my comment was not meant for you I suggest you disregard it. I am a tech, by the way.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I may look bad to you, but what i write is as firmly grounded in scholarship and theology as I can make it, and I am trying all the time to learn more. I am also willing to change my opinions as the result of learning more. How do you go about learning, if at all? Are you prepared to reconsider? I don’t have room here to list all the former positions that I have abandoned.

  • Margot Fernandez

    Here’s something from C. S. Lewis for you…he was a theologian, you may know.
    “But flippancy is the [worst] of all. In the first place it is very economical. Only a clever human can make a real Joke about virtue, or indeed about anything else; any of them can be trained to talk as if virtue were funny. Among flippant people the Joke is always assumed to have been made. No one actually makes it; but every serious subject is discussed in a manner which implies that they have already found a ridiculous side to it. If prolonged, the habit of Flippancy builds up around a man the finest armour-plating against the Enemy that I know, and it is quite free from the dangers inherent in the other sources of laughter. It is a thousand miles away from joy it deadens, instead of sharpening, the intellect; and it excites no affection between those who practice it.”

  • Margot Fernandez

    What happens is that humans, who do not question their cultural assumptions, take it upon themselves to act out what they believe would be God’s judgment if God were to intervene. Thus the Pope said yesterday that his concept of God’s law trumps American civil law. ISIS is no different; they take it upon themselves to act in judgment and punish as they see fit, in the name of their idea of God. The idea that we should not judge, as Jesus said, does not operate in this scenario. There’s the problem: not only judging, but appointing oneself jury and executioner.

  • Margot Fernandez

    You think this is news? If you can’t start with Jesus being Jewish you don’t understand his movement. But his movement went on after him and was shaped later by St. Paul and others. Those letters that were later added to the Canon of Scripture were not known or not in existence in Eusebius’ time. It’s pretty straightforward if you study Church history.

  • Margot Fernandez

    Why don’t you Google it or look it up in Wikipedia?

  • Margot Fernandez

    Try a complete power cycle.

  • Jeff Preuss

    I work with a woman who never, and I mean NEVER, shuts her computer off. At the end of each day, she just gets up to leave, walking away from her fully-on system.

    I’m not entirely positive she would know how to shut it off if IT instructed her to…

  • Trilemma

    At a company my wife used to work for, if someone walked away from their fully on system then co-workers would get on the abandoned computer and send prank emails such as inviting everyone over for free cookies the next day.

  • Interesting! I’ll read up on it.

  • Herm

    Dave I do appreciate your time and I pray I can reciprocate even more in truth. For you I am inviting the Spirit of truth to help you to understand for yourself.

    I never once gave you my credentials nor lied about my relationship with God. My world recognized scholastic credentials, ordination and tenure of experience in the religion of Christianity exceeds yours. Your pride of achievement for God reminds me of my late 30’s when, just between Him and me, I looked God straight in the eye and literally told Him, “I got it all now. You don’t have to worry about me. You can use me as you will.” As an ordained hands on Elder I had just completed a successful, by any standard of mankind, three year ministry in Folsom prison. Ten years later, after a decade long mid-life crisis, I had nothing that I could call mine. No church, no family, no job and without God I would have had no hope but there was Hope right there in my midst who I had not known when I thought, by my fruit, I had it all.

    You have spent much time with me with scripture popping in your head as you wrote. Did you do so for me, for God or for you? You responded to every question I posed without once asking the Teacher. How do I know? You hopefully are asking. Let’s just use the last post you offered to me.

    You began:

    “Jesus was speaking of Himself as the temple that would be destroyed and rebuilt in 3 days. The Temple in the OT was God’s house. It remained until the Roman invasion in AD 70. Jesus was crucified on Friday. Friday, Saturday and Sunday, He was in the tomb until He rose on Sunday, the third day.”

    That is theory so riddled with holes I truly hope you aren’t sharing that with Sunday school children building their spiritual foundation. Jesus is now the High Priest in the order of Melchizedek, forever. He is not the temple He serves.

    The Holy of Holies was far more than symbolic, it was the final room in God’s hand drawn plan of the prophetic Tabernacle. God gave the Levites charge to administer His designed Tabernacle under the covenant authority known as the Moses seat. The curtain before the Holy of Holies was very real. It was the door for only the high priest to enter to share the sacrificial blood (the wine?) with the fulltime resident, the Holy Spirit. It was the only Way for the Israelites to speak directly with God but only through the high priest (… and much more than just once a year). The Levites were so careless they lost the arc of the covenant but that’s a fact for another day. The curtain literally was torn and there are no more first born animal sacrifices for atonement accepted, even by those religious authorities who do not yet recognize Jesus who was physically and spiritually in their ancestors midst as the Lamb.

    As promised I got and have read John Walvoord’s book The Holy Spirit. He is a good man who didn’t really know the Spirit of truth but academically he certainly knew of the Holy Spirit. When we don’t know what we don’t know we tend to execute those who do know as imposters. Not much different than Caiaphas’ relationship with Jesus or your relationship with Ben. I, and those of us in the Spirit as legitimate little daughters and sons of the Father of God today, know the Holy Spirit uniting us as one as the very same “dove” who whelmed (baptized) Jesus at the beginning of His ministry. That was the first witnessing testimony to Jesus being recognized as the only begotten Son of God by His Father.

    If this were just sparring fun between children wielding the swords from their mouths imitating their guardian adult elders, all the weak areas of your spiritual battle have been exposed and you are mortally wounded. This is not and we are deadly serious in our jousting with a little bit of jesting relief thrown in to lighten our load along this journey.

    This is for you and your supporting cast of ignorant crowd calling for the execution of Ben and his band of progressive minions. This is for those today who would use their authority granted them by their in depth study of scripture to execute living children of God, as physically were thousands of brothers and sisters of Jesus just after Jesus’ ascension, in the name of God. Those were real live little siblings of the begotten Son of God who were writing by their blood their testament to the word of God they personally each reciprocally knew and loved in their hearts and minds long before the New Testament could be published.

    You ended our question and answer period with the following:

    “I’m rapidly approaching the end of the night for me, but I’d like to offer a great site that can help with questions. When I hit a tough one, I often go there.

    gotquestions.org”

    I am boldly proclaiming to you and yours that the Gospel of God, released once and for all from the Holy of Holies to reside in the temple of our High Priest, as real and not some fanciful interpretive symbolic theory. Those who know Him, and I can easily name a few you can find right here as we worship in the Spirit together, know what you have proved you do not. They are sharing their inspired testimony here no less important or grand than that of any of the writers of the New Testament.

    Let’s plant a seed that as it germinates, if you faithfully ruminate over it, will help you escape the blinders of Caiaphas’ spirit of religion to find true relationship in a very real and divinely trustworthy creator God.

    The “Old Testament” is only testifying to the beginning relationship of childishly immature and ignorant spiritual images of God, male and female, which took billions of our years before even just the breath of God could be shared. By the Jewish, faithfully kept, calendar today we are into 5,775 of our sun years since one year before the creation in Genesis. Fundamentally do you believe that or is that time frame, maybe, a bit too conservative to contain the full reality of God’s creation? Are you afraid that the potential inadequacy of that calendar might negate the God you thought you knew and trusted so much that you chose to go to gotquestons.org when you hit a tough one?

    The Old Testament did not stop at the beginning but upon review testified throughout to our rebellious but budding relationship with God and, most importantly to Christians, clearly to the coming of the Lamb our King. Compare the beloved king David to Jesus who served to die under the mantle of the “King of the Jews”. If the Bible were an example of how to live do you see any contrast between the psalmist David’s examples compared with Jesus’ example? One was a war lord and one was the Prince of Peace. One at the pinnacle of his biblical influence committed murder to satisfy the desire of his loins and one at the pinnacle of his biblical influence died alone for the ignorance of His creation. There is more to compare.

    The New Testament is not the word of God but testifies to the word of God no different in authority than I or Ben are doing now. Neither of us claim to have it all now for we have learned to humbly come to God as little ignorant, bumbling but adorable children to be taught by our Brother as authorized by our Father. Both of us have gone through the journey of constantly being pointed back to the good old naïve days in the Garden of Eden before we even knew there was good (constructive spirit) and a competing evil (destructive spirit). Both of us have committed our full trusting allegiance to our Lord Jesus and can in full reality of the Spirit look forward to learning, sharing, savoring and adventuring in our Family of God today to just past the end of eternity. As little children we excitedly anticipate what we are being led to just around the next bend while we stop to share together in the Spirit to savor exactly where we are at and see from each of our different perspectives.

    Yes, because we love all of God’s creation and all of God we know we do empathetically step out to try to lead the lost to find the peace and joy we know. There is so much painful evil perpetrated by those of mankind only because they do not actually know the source of good. Little children don’t feel the depth of empathetic pain as do their parents. As a little child with limited perspective I still cannot ignore or not be whelmed for the pain of victims and their perpetrators lost in their ignorant pride.

    I don’t have it all, not even close, but today I can honestly say I know who does have it all and shares abundantly with those who know to ask Them, seek Them and knock on Their door. Those who do know Them, and especially are in Them, don’t go to gotquestions.org for authoritative answers to their tough ones.

    Now that I have shared the Gospel with you I invite you to get alone, away from conservative look back to the garden influences, and plead your case directly with the only Judge of God qualified to sentence you to a life eternally progressing forward.

    Love you Dave, very much! Please stay and worship with us in the spirit as the Father asks us to do. Our hearts and minds are the temple that from within each our Messiah teaches exactly as we need before we know we need it. There is an eternity’s worth to share and savor yet ahead (but time cannot stop or go back) in ever new experience, knowledge, and breath giving adventure. You are welcome to come along equally with us but no matter how much you try you cannot go back! Without your heart and mind being whelmed fully and fulltime by the Holy Spirit to be one in God the best you can hope for is eternally stopped.

    Herm in the Spirit of truth

  • Jeff Preuss

    Oooooo, what a FANTASTIC idea.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    That’s me told.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Margot, please don’t stop. What I said was, all I see when you write. Your style blinds me to your facts. I truly see your heart. It is filled with all those things I said previously. You are a great ambassador for Ben’s way of thinking, and I am happy you are here. Chuckles Bra! (yes they even say bra to girls)

  • In other words, the Christian deity’s name has an origin story that modern Christians would disavow. You can’t accuse “Allah” of having dubious origins and not be willing to apply the same criticism to your own group.

    Now, if you had said something like, “They can’t be the same god, because Allah was originally a moon god, and Yahweh was originally a Canaanite storm god, so obviously they aren’t the same” then you might have had something.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    Do you bother reading anyone else’s posts, even ones you actually reply to?
    Or have you forgotten you have already replied to this post and I have already told you I don’t find any of this “shocking” but was simply responding to Jens Bech’s use of the word about something that wasn’t actually true?
    It’s pretty straightforward if you read stuff before responding.
    (Spot the use of the words of the previous post in ironic reply, in case you missed it. Again.)

  • Herm

    Ike, you have my vote for boldly speaking out so clearly and devoutly religious. The reason you keep hitting resistance is you want God to speak your language, which in this case is your religious fore-father’s language, and you don’t want to learn to speak Their language that is shared within the Family, you know, like between the Son and the Father. Would it help you to know there is no word in mankind’s language, none, that is a magic incantation commanding God to appear or act? God does for us because They love.

  • Investigator

    Although I prefer those who make assertions provide the evidence for these assertions, as I was curious, I did look it up.

    http://hermeneutics.stackexchange.com/questions/12794/was-the-text-of-matthew-2819-changed

    Here, from the above:

    Since something like the full text of Matthew 28:19 is found in the Didache (AD 50-70 at the earliest and generally early second century at the latest), is alluded to twice by Tertullian (d. 225) in On Baptism and Against Praxeas, and by several other church fathers before Nicea, Nicea (c. 325) couldn’t have added it.

    ON BAPTISM For there has been imposed a law of baptizing, and its form prescribed: Go, [Jesus] says, teach the nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost. Tertullian wrote that quote before his death c. 225. That’s a century before Nicea.

    The position in the question, that Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is not original to Matthew 28:19 is held today by very few scholars. Those that do point to a quotation from the early church historian Eusebius. In Demonstratio 3.6, he replaces “name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit” with “my name.”

    I always enjoy learning something new, even if it is just the knowledge of another failed attempt to subvert scripture.

  • Investigator

    “Those letters that were later added to the Canon of Scripture were not known or not in existence in Eusebius’ time. ”

    To which letters are you referring? Paul’s?

  • seashell

    Good grief. Bra can be the female version of bro.

  • It just makes me think of the stereotypical frat boy, personally.

  • You are welcome to believe that.

  • Ike

    Fortunately, the only Living God does not have any dubious Canaanite or any other origins or any arrant nonsense like that. He has no beginning and no end, has always been and will always be. Most importantly for us, He became the Godman Yahshua, died and rose up for our sakes, destroying the power of sin and death over us forever. No utterly useless, dead Canaanite storm god or Arabic moon god for that matter can do that since they are powerless to do so. We can say all we have to say, expound the wisest and most foolish things we want, but this will never change.

  • You can’t teach a person history when they cling to ideology.

    Though I do like discussing the origin of Satan’s alleged history as a fallen angel who tried to usurp the throne of God and was cast down into Hell to rule over the damned. Anyone who pursues the term lucifer to its Canaanite origin is in for a treat.

  • Ike

    Actually believing and actually following what the Bible actually says, as directed by the wisdom of the Holy Spirit are two very different things, as black people know to their very heavy cost.

  • Ok, then I’m confused. I thought you said Allah and the Christian God can’t be the same because Allah is a moon god from antiquity. Did I misunderstand your point?

  • Jeanne Fox

    This is from the Wikipedia article about the name Allah: Allah is the contraction of Al ilah, the God. Cognates of Allah exist in other Semitic languages: Aramaic: Elah; Biblical Aramaic: Elaha; Syriac: Alaha. Biblical Hebrew usually used the plural, Elohim, and more rarely, Eloah, which is the singular form. Arab Christians today use Allah al-Ab (God the Father) to distinguish their usage from the Muslim usage.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Its an ever changing pigeon, used in a sub culture, you could never understand. You multi cultural types should get that.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Once again. I use it on the angry ones, who attack someone else trying to make their point. You act like a child on the playground. I turn this into a playground. I would much rather , not write, and just read respectful back and forth debate. You Ben lovers, tend to get arrogant and mean. If thats what you want. Lets just have fun then. Herm and Dave L. seemed to do it with respect. But old Margot, wants to get beef.

  • TeDeumLaudamus

    Sorry, Chris, but I simply don’t share your view. I know the Bible pretty well and I definitely am a Christian, but I operate with a clear understanding that the Almighty is in charge of things and that, in the end, Jesus has overcome sin and death. Besides, how effective is the witness of a pessimist?

    The only real task and calling for Christians is to love people and tell them the truth of the Gospel. When it comes to nations, we’re dealing with a much higher order of demonic influence than the demons that harass us individually or in our families and local communities. Prayer, spiritual warfare and being a witness to love and truth are what is within our power to do. Everyone doing that changes everything and every place for good.

    I can’t imagine my having anything else to contribute to this discussion.

  • I’m not a Ben lover, nor am I a follower of the text which states that one should not repay evil for evil, but overcome evil through goodness.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Thats fine. But I am not assuming evil. I prefer to think they just like to have fun. So lets just have fun. Kinda like a hockey game. Everybody likes a good clean hit. Ya just better keep your head up, and respect the hit.

  • If the topic is, for example, LGBT rights, then do you think the discussion involved is all in fun?

  • Trilemma

    What!? God died?

  • Femi Emmanuel

    Dear people,

    Forgive me if this is not in sync with the topic of discussion but let me say that I have not judged if “The Father, Son and Holy Spirit” was always in the text or added at a latter time but we in my local assembly do not baptize by these which appear to be titles.

    We have the understanding that the Holy Spirit revealed that we are to be baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus.
    The scripture through the acts of the apostles confirmed this severally as shown in the following references: Acts 2:38, Acts 8:16, Acts 10:48, Acts 19:5, 1Cor 1:13-15.

    The Lord bless and enrich us continually.

    Shalom.

  • Femi Emmanuel

    Dear iain,
    The spirits behind the referenced gods or Gods are different. The believers may think they are referring to the same God but the attributes and works of these “Gods” differ.
    The Jesus’ being referenced are also different. One is definitely referring to another Jesus different from the Jesus Christ that died, was buried and resurrected.

  • Dave L

    Herm,

    Your post has greatly saddened me. Not because of what you think of me, but because I thought your line of questioning was sincere. I am saddened that you believe duplicity is OK behavior. True, you did not overtly lie about your credentials, but by your own statements in this post you betray the fact that you knew I thought you
    were an inexperienced Christian in need. Not overtly lying is a technicality. Feigning friendship and planning attack is not a Christian tactic.

    I will leave you with two things.

    First, it is not godly to misrepresent others’ words. I have never called for the “execution” of Ben and I have no minions. You claim I am focused on my credentials, but I merely answered your question after you asked me directly and after I put God’s Word first as the authority. I
    never even hinted at my credentials before you asked. I will remind you, in your anger (presumably over the disagreement others have with Ben), do not sin.

    Second, your credibility is destroyed with me after your
    revelations regarding your character in this post. Credibility is something that must be maintained through a lifestyle of integrity. Christians are known by their fruits and one thing God detests is intrigue. Because of this, I am ceasing my theological discourse with you. At times, you speak as if you are a loving man, but you misrepresent yourself and misrepresent the words of
    others which is contrary to this former image. You claim to have divine knowledge of whether I sought the
    “Teacher” in my responses. These are not things a disciple of Jesus does.

    I forgive you and hold no hard feelings. But, I truly hope you learn from this experience. The only way for you to do that is to soften your heart to God’s Word (OT and NT). As I stated before, credentials mean nothing without a biblical foundation. So, if you are so credentialed, I hope you revector your heart to match your mind.

    Goodbye,
    Dave

  • Investigator

    Femi, are you a oneness Pentecostal?

  • Femi Emmanuel

    Dear brother,

    I am simply a christian. I do not know what it means to be a oneness Pentecostal.

    Peace.

  • Investigator

    I don’t, particularly when the LGBT community stand up for their “rights” they trample on mine.

    If I were a businessman, say a cake maker or pizza parlor owner, I would have a monetary incentive to serve homosexuals, and would have no problem doing so.

    However, if that service required me to join in a celebration of say, a homosexual marriage (such as catering it), I would politely decline and suggest to them other businesses that would be happy to accommodate them.

    Jews should not be forced, through the power of the law, to cater or in some way celebrate, a Nazi wedding and neither should Christians be forced to cater to homosexual weddings. With homosexuals, it used to be live and let live; now that they have achieved that goal, they wish to force others to comply with their lifestyle choices. This is a recipe for a lot of anger and hostility.

  • Investigator

    Oneness Pentecostals are those who reject the trinity yet still believe Jesus is God. When the scriptures say God the Father, they think Jesus. It is modalism, ie., that Jesus has different modes he inhabits.

    These Churches generally make a big deal about baptizing in “Jesus name only”, not in the tradition of the Great Commission of Mathew 28:19.
    Often, their churches go by names like The First Apostolic Church, or Emmanuel Apostolic Church and as the name Oneness Pentecostal suggests, they are Pentecostal and maintain that believers should manifest their salvation by speaking in tongues.

    Hope this helps.

  • I would say this is an argument we concluded in the 1960s when it was made law that a business owner could not offer services to some people and exclude them from others on such arbitrary bases, for which I am glad. I don’t want to live in a country where, by virtue of geographic and demographic selection, I may have some rights and not others, or no rights at all, based entirely on the religious affiliation of my townspeople.
    Regarding the hypothetical Jewish Nazi cake, however, oy, is this analogy tiresome.

  • Investigator

    “Once we get the courage to say that some of Scripture is mistaken at best, we can begin making progress again.”

    That is not the kind of progress I’d define as progress. Once you have rejected what scripture says in favor of some theory, like the flood was the collapse of the Bosporus, then one naturally begins to question everything else. That can lead some to do what Benjamin appears to be doing, worshipping a God of his own creation, or worse.

  • Seashell is not the original poster you told to learn more about Christianity and expressing themselves. Lady, I’m sympathetic to the basic content of a lot of what you have to say, but you have a chronic reading comprehension issue.

  • Investigator

    “…oy, is this analogy tiresome.”

    Perhaps its overuse is an indication of how apropos it is for this given situation.

    Just what should the Jewish baker do in such a situation?

    Would an Armenian baker hired to serve at a Turkish celebration be a better fit?

    You can see that a bazillion different examples could be given.

  • My guys would do this all the time, and it was nearly as innocent as inviting people over for free cookies.

    I think the most insidious one was an email “from” our reclusive UI/UX designer telling everyone he didn’t feel like part of the team, so could everyone come over to his desk and talk to him more frequently throughout the day.

    Others were a lot more overt, but you can probably imagine.

  • Yeah. Maybe we could ship him a Ping hat and some collar starch.

  • What is a Nazi wedding?

  • Femi Emmanuel

    Dear Dave and brethren,

    Our God is a spirit and behind the gods that the different people of this world worship in one way or the other are spirits.

    The God that we serve is known by the way He has revealed Himself from the beginning of creation, through the fathers; before the law; throughout the times of the law and the prophets; by His incarnation in Jesus Christ of Nazareth and now in the Holy Spirit.

    Our God declared who He has always been to us in ages past, now and will continue to eternity.

    Whenever we see a ‘god’ whose attributes, manifestations or declarations and workings are different from Yeshua then we know this must be another god.
    We must not serve another God if we claim to be of Christ and to be in Christ.

    When a ‘Jesus’ is preached or believed whose ways, manifestations, works and accomplishment are different from that which the Spirit and the word (directly spoken or written but quickened to our spirit and soul) has revealed and is revealing to us then we know this must be another Jesus.

    We must not believe in or follow this other ‘Jesus’ other than the one revealed by the Spirit and the Word.

    Islam preaches another god and another Jesus according to my judgement of my spirit and the word of God in me as quickened by the Spirit of Truth.

    In these days and times it is essential that we are empowered by the Spirit of Truth to judge all things and to hold fast to that which is true. We need grace and the unction of the Holy Spirit to discern that which is of God and that which is of the evil one lest we be deceived.

    These are the days in which the activities of false christs, false teachers, false prophets and seducing spirits will be greatly multiplied to deceive the whole world and even the elect of God.

    May the Lord keep us and sanctify us continually by His word and by His Spirit.

    Peace.

  • Bones

    You know many of your white supremacist mates are still crying about having to serve blacks.

    Maybe you should ask them how they handle such injustice.

  • Bones

    Still sooking about it.

    You’ll get over it.

    It’s a shame the state has to make you treat human beings with respect.

  • Bones

    If you say so.

    Of course Biblical literalists are really moral relativists.

    There are times when burning people alive and committing genocide is ok because God said.

    I mean why doesn’t Israel not have the Torah as their national law?

  • I’m afraid you dwell in the realm of Harry Potter. If you have such an optimistic view please explain ISIS to me, the sex industry, the modern slave trade and the decimation of the Middle East. Please explain the continuing injustice against the native Americans, the west’s collusion with Saudi Arabia which is seeking to behead and crucify a boy because he dared to protest. Explain the thousands drowning in the Mediterranean.

  • Bones

    More like we don’t understand scripture. Which most don’t.

    If we understand why each document was compiled we wouldn’t be having nonsensical rants about people making us follow three thousand year old ancient tribal purity codes. Or even the anti-semitism in John’s and Matthew’s Gospel which has stained the history of Christianity. Or garbage predictions about blood moons and the end of the world.

    The Torah was compiled during the Post -Exilic Period where Israel’s history was revised. (4th century BCE documents from the pre-exilic Jewish community at Elephantine show that they had no knowledge of Torah). There is contrary evidence to the Canaanite genocide ordered by God.

    It’s bizarre that people accept it as literal fact when it’s a mixture of legend, folklore, priestly traditions and national revisionism.

    I mean thankfully Israel doesn’t follow it.

  • Bones

    You are worshipping a God of your own creation as well.

  • Nathaniel Borges

    The old Christians shouldn’t point fingers at Muslims because your scriptures are bad too position. Christianity and Islam have different traditions, scriptures, and doctrines. To put them on an equal platform regarding the doctrines is disingenuous. I hear this position a lot from Liberals and it is just not the same difference. The Islamic Isu (Jesus) is not the Jesus of the New Testament and not the historical Jesus. I’ll assume that you know Jesus’ teachings and there influence on his disciples which was evidenced by their non-violent reaction in spreading the Gospel and in their writings. To solely point to the Hebrew scriptures and use that as a tool to silence Christian critics of Islamic violence, that is always prescribed because of their sealed scriptures, is again disingenuous.

  • Bones

    Pastorals, Petrine

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Investigator, not only have we entered the playground. How did we get in the one with the special needs class? This one should be left to the lunatics. Your to valuable. I think your wasting your time on these Haoles.

  • Ron McPherson

    Beautifully stated!

  • Kanjet

    Suffice to say, next week you will hold another position?

  • Jeff Preuss

    Honestly, the bigger shame is that it takes the state intervening for that to happen.

  • Bones

    Meh and they think their bigotry makes them more intelligent.

  • Bones

    There’s not a skerrick of evidence for an Israelite invasion of Canaan or genocide.

    In fact the evidence says the contrary.

    That’s without even taking into accounts the contradictions themselves eg the Israelites wiping out cities to a man only to have them attack them in a generation.

    eg
    “They destroyed everyone. They did not leave anyone alive.” (Joshua 11:14) “Joshua conquered the Hittites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Perrizites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites.” (Joshua 12:7) “Jericho fought against you, as did the Amorites, the Perrizites, the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Girgashites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, but I delivered them into your hands. They were driven out from before you.” (Joshua 24:11)

    or is it

    “they did not drive out the Jebusites.” (Judges 1:21) “The children of Israel dwelt among the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perrizites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites.” (Judges 3:5)

    Definitely two histories here. The Judges one is more accurate archaeologically

    And your God sounds like ISIS.

  • One Truth

    “However, this moral judgement– one that is absolutely correct in
    identifying these behaviors as evil– creates a serious problem for the
    Christian (or Jew) in that all of those behaviors are commanded and affirmed in the Bible.”

    Your Great ignorance of Gods Word leads you to this conclusion, yet for the Spiritually lead Christian, who knows Gods Word, we know that your attempt to connect these dots and make them stand is futile.

    Islam is fueled by pure hatred toward God, His truth and His followers and even toward those who stand in the middle who choose not to choose the Islamic way.

    Admit this or just admit that you know nothing about Islam or the teachings of the koran (quran).

    Because you have a hatred and disdain for Jesus Christ, You constantly attack His Word, yet in your heart, you know that you are an outright liar and disconnected from the One True God.

    The difference between the acts of Islam Terrorists and the Israelites is very obvious to the Believer who knows Gods Word.

    If you were to move your family ( who you loved ) to a new city, you would not move your wife and children into a gang and drug infested neighborhood and let them go hang around the hood, being influenced by the drug dealers, criminal thugs, hookers and their children would you? Why? To protect them from those influences, right?……Right

    O.K. Gods holy and perfect judgments were against outright evil nations who had turned away from God, and were commenced as an act of cleansing by His nation of holy priests that He was raising up ( Deuteronomy 6 & 7 ) to protect them and their children from those influences. Pretty Basic.

    Islam is no different than Canaan or Sodom, and rages acts of hatred toward what is Righteous and Holy from purely evil motives. A prophecy that was given by an angel of God, to Hagar in Genesis 16:10-12.

    As Jesus Christ Stated in Matthew 12:30 ” He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters.”

  • One Truth

    “There is such a thing as scholarship. There is such a thing as theology. Good luck with that.”

    And you still have not learned it.

  • Bones

    Ummmm who’s the one thinking that Jesus (ie God) ordered genocide, slavery, dismemberment and capital punishment.

    The ideology behind ISIS is to purify Islam of idolators.

    Sound familiar?

  • Bones

    Allah is the Arabic word for God so yeah Arabic Christians worship Allah.

  • Bones

    Well he’s not.

    He read something on the internet which justifies his hatred of Muslims unless you think Christian Arabs worship a moon god.

  • Bones

    There was more than one belief about polytheism in the Old Testament. Some writers believed some didnt.

    Thats why you cant read the Bible as a seamless unified text.

  • Bones

    Also take into account why John wrote what He did. John’s gospel represents a clear breakaway from Judaism, the darkness and the children of the devil. The conflicts with synagogue in the gospel are conflicts in Johns context not Jesus’s.

    His exclusivist verses are aimed squarely at Judaism.

  • Investigator

    The Old Testament contains a lot of history, tells the story warts and all. God demonstrates his attitude toward sin in his judgement of the Canaanites. From man’s point of view it is a hard pill to swallow.

    God judged the sin of the Canaanites but Christ has come, shed his blood on the cross, tore the veil of the temple, opening the way for all to call on the name of the Lord.

    When Jesus asked the disciples if they wanted to go too (as folks were leaving Jesus), they asked him, where shall we go, you alone have the words of eternal life? There isn’t any other game in town, only Jesus.

  • Investigator

    “You know many of your white supremacist mates are still crying about having to serve blacks.”

    The old liberal standby, just start calling people racists, or Nazis, or haters, blah blah blah. It is how the politically correct just shut down all dialogue.

  • Investigator

    “What is a Nazi wedding?”

    Is that a serious question? A wedding between two Nazis?

  • Investigator
  • Investigator

    How so?

  • Investigator

    How do you know this?

  • seashell

    Just what should the Jewish baker do in such a situation?

    Please. If a couple enters a Jewish bakery and orders a cake with ‘Congratulations X & Y’ or the equivalent, the baker sells them a wedding cake probably without knowing they are Nazis. If the couple wants “Death to Jews” on the cake, the baker can legally refuse. An Evangelical can refuse for the same reason. A black baker (even without religious beliefs) can refuse a burning cross, but how is a black baker to know a KKK member from anyone else without their robes on?

    Do you know how many cakes have been sold to gays by evangelicals because they didn’t know they were gay? Or pizzas? Probably quite a few.

    And you know what. The skies didn’t part, lightening didn’t strike and God could probably care less. If at all. Not getting your own way doesn’t make you a victim.

  • Investigator

    I believe you mean the Aton, as in Akhenaton. Many of the other Pharaohs worshipped Amun Ra, hence the Pharaoh’s with names like Tutankhamun and Amenhotep.

  • Investigator

    “Well, that’s well and good, but we don’t follow St. Paul’s teachings now.”

    You are, of course, speaking for yourself.

  • Investigator

    The triune God of the Bible and the attributes ascribed to him are NOT the same as the god of Islam. Jesus is NOT the son of God, God the son in Islam.

  • Investigator

    “If you think God is the god of your own particular team and no-one else is allowed to share him, you have mistaken the nature of God.”

    What on earth would give you this idea?
    Jesus died for ALL, and salvation is open to ALL, and homes will be prepared in heaven for ALL who receive him. He is not the God of my team, there is NO my team.

  • Investigator

    “…and tell them they don’t matter, only the fetus using their body does?”

    Who said the women don’t matter? You said it, not me. That is life growing inside a woman and since it is life, it is human life.

    So should the bedridden who can’t take care of themselves just be left to die?

  • Investigator

    I think you made some very valid points. So just how did those people know their customers were homosexuals?

    Radical homosexuals set up these encounters so they can bring law suits and castigate violators in the news.

    Among the hundreds of thousands in donations to the couple of the Pizza Parlor were donations from a few homosexuals who felt the anger directed their way was hateful.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3028925/If-child-gay-love-wouldn-t-wedding-Defiant-Indiana-pizza-parlor-owners-won-t-cater-gay-reception-REOPEN-store-today-buoyed-donations-842-000.html

  • Investigator

    Apparently the state hasn’t been successful with you.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    I do not disagree that there is a difference between what Muslims or Mormons or whoever believe about God or Jesus and what Christians do – I have repeated this ad nauseum in almost every post.
    The problem is that a lot of Christians, apparently you incuded, think that non Christians are somehow not allowed to talk about God, or (I am unclear how) incapable of doing so, and insist, without foundation, in what must be to persons of any other faith a patronising, insulting and frankly offensive manner, that because they do not agree with us about God, no matter what they say they must “really” be talking about someone or something else entirely.
    Would you like it if a Muslim or Jew insisted you must be a worshipper of Zeus rather than the God of the old testament because Christian understanding of God is influenced by Greek thought? Or if you were told that when you talked about Jesus you were “really” talking about the Norse god Baldur because they thought the story of Jesus, resurrection resembled pagan death and rebirth stories about him?

  • Bones

    Meh, you’re no different to people who dislike Jews or blacks because………

    Unfortunately laws have to be passed to treat people as human beings. It must be difficult being persecuted on-line.

  • Bones

    Yeah thanks for the sermon but you’re barking up the wrong tree.

    Now tell me again why Israel doesn’t have the Torah as it’s national law?

  • Investigator

    1 Peter was never in doubt and though 2 Peter is perhaps the most doubted book of the NT, Origen mentions the book and Origen died in 254, before Eusebius was even born (263-339).

    The Pastoral Epistles are Paul’s.

  • Bones
  • LadySunami

    That’s what it means to tell a woman she cannot stop being pregnant whether she wants to be pregnant or not. You are telling her that her bodily autonomy doesn’t matter, that what she wants for her body doesn’t matter. You are prioritizing your opinions over her ability to control her own body. Not the fetus’s opinion, as prior to 25 weeks it doesn’t even have the capacity for opinions. It’s all about your opinion and what you think she should be forced to allow to happen to herself.

    —–

    Human cheek cells in a petri dish are also a form of human life. We do not and never have based the rights of human beings on their human DNA, we base it on their brains.
    Under the law, conjoined twins are legally two different people. It doesn’t matter that they have a same body and the same DNA, what matters is their two different brains. Two brains, two people.
    On the other hand, under the law a human chimera is only one person. A human chimera is formed when two different fertilized eggs fuse, ultimately resulting in only one live birth. Cells descended from both fertilized eggs still live on in the person, yet so long as said person has only one brain, they are only one person. One brain, one person.
    A fetus prior to 25 weeks doesn’t have a functioning brain, and 98.6% of abortions occur before 21 weeks. As I’ve already told you with no functioning brain it has no thoughts, no experiences, no wishes, no nothing. Since it has no brain of its own and is completely dependent upon the woman for survival, it is a part of her body. If you deny this and insist it is a separate entity, then said separate entity is one without a brain. It either has the woman’s brain, and is thus a part of her person (one brain, one person), or it has no brain at all and so isn’t a person (no brain, no person). Either way, if the woman doesn’t want it inside her, it is her right to remove it.

    Summary: Personhood is determined by functioning brains, nothing else.

    —–

    If the bedridden individual requires being hooked up to another person (against said other person’s will) in order to survive, then yes. I gave you such an example just above. You cannot be forced to act as a person’s human dialysis machine, even if only for 9 months. No one can take or use parts of your body without your permission.

    Even if the discussion wasn’t one of using other people’s literal body parts, if a member of your family was bedridden, you personally would not have to take care of them. You cannot be forced to take your aging parents into your own home. You need to alert someone of their situation of course, but that is all. Fetuses cannot be handed off to someone else though, unlike the bedridden. They can’t even be taken from one woman’s womb and placed in another, let alone cared for along with many other fetuses by a ward full of nurses. Add to that the fact bedridden individuals actually have fully functioning brains (unless they’re comatose or brain dead) and the situation isn’t remotely comparable.

    Summary: Bedridden individuals have functional brains, can be cared for by any number of people, and don’t require any parts of their caretaker’s bodies to be physically attached to them. Fetuses don’t have functional brains, can only be cared for a single person, and do require being physically attached to their sole caretaker. They are not in analogous situations.

  • Bones

    Do you think you’re alone and we haven’t seen this before?

    When people are given rights denied by them, there is always a group who gets upset because they believe they have the right to persecute others.

    Persecution’s a bitch sometimes. But not when you’re doing the persecuting, hey?

  • Bones

    Lol. Think about it.

  • So, you’re asking if a Jewish cake shop owner should have to provide a cake for a wedding of two National Socialists who have seen fit to revive Germany’s economic and political theory from the mid-1900s. Yes, he should. And they should have to provide a cake to his wedding if the roles were reversed.

    Although, for the life of me, I cannot imagine this scenario happening. What Nazis are you thinking of getting married? Like the war criminals who fled to Brazil or something?

  • One Truth

    “Sound familiar?”

    Familiar does not translate to exactly alike. A parrot can mimic a human, but it is a bird. Have you never heard the term { Wolf in sheep’s clothing } ? Jesus gave that warning for a reason.

    Everything that God has done, satan has attempted to mimic. Why do you think so many false religions have came about in the last few thousand years.

    Satan in his attempt to lead people away from their creator, has laid out a buffet of religions and ideologies ( in other words, Lies ) to lead people astray. No different than what he accomplished with Eve in the garden. He’s a Liar.

    “The ideology behind ISIS is to purify Islam of idolators.”

    Hitler, Mao, Stalin, Yahweh Ben Yahweh, Jim Jones, David Koresh etc….Do you also believe that they were holy men, doing the works of God? We really need to use our heads here friend.

    So, Satan has brainwashed his children to teach and carry out evil, disguised as righteousness, and tells them it is for the good. And because they are evil men, opposed to God, they listen and follow.
    John 8:38-45……Read it.

  • Trilemma

    When I talk to a child, I use words and grammar in accordance with how the child will understand them. Anything else would be deception or incompetence. If God says, “Shortly,” then He means shortly in accordance with human understanding, either that or He’s lying or He’s an incompetent communicator.

  • Bones

    Satan mimics genocide? Really!

    Only in Biblical literalism can such moral relativity be found.

    “Hitler, Mao, Stalin, Yahweh Ben Yahweh, Jim Jones, David Koresh etc….”

    They were evil nutters and control freaks.

    “We really need to use our heads here friend.”

    Let us know when you start.

    Can you tell me why massacring idol worshipers is now an evil act? Whereas in Bible times cutting the throat of a baby boy was a good thing?

    “John 8:38-45……Read it.”

    Yep. John is having a go at the Jews which is what the whole Gospel is about and who it’s aimed at.

    Unless you’re saying the Jews were murderers for their behaviour in Canaan. Then yes I agree.

  • Herm

    Dave,

    You don’t know duplicity when you do not know the Son of Man and the Son of God who questioned all the authorities representing His religious upbringing.

    “You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life.” John 5:39-40

    You are not a disciple of the Christ until you actually despise, not love less than Jesus, the traditional influences of your entire family of mankind; blood and religious. Jesus despises the alter, the cross on steeples, necks and walls, the pulpit, the creeds and prayers repetitiously spoken out loud in rote, the sacraments, the theologies of Man and, yes, all the buildings misrepresenting His church which worships only in the Spirit found inside His congregation. The sanctuary for the peace and joy of His church is found only in the hearts and minds of His parishioners. The cross is very real that we students of His carry for our enemies in place of the sword. The only sword we wield is from our mouth for our hands are busy in the ultimate service for all of mankind created in the image of God, good and evil.

    Should you become a disciple these are pointed commands all of us adhere to…

    ““But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have one Teacher, and you are all brothers. And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one Instructor, the Messiah. The greatest among you will be your servant. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” Matthew 23:8-12

    Dave, Jesus does not need a Pharisaical police force to discredit, defame and attempt to shut down houses of worship in His name. You walked into this house serviced by Ben, you walked to the front of the participating congregation, turned your back on Ben and spewed the superiority of your theory of religious practice over his. You attempted to crucify the Spirit of Ben and his sisters and brothers in Christ. You related about him, not to him, as “the guy” and “that author”. Is that really the love Jesus taught before his enemies? Your authoritative attitude is more in the example of Pharisee Saul, the executioner of the Messiah’s disciples, than Paul the disciple, apostle and little brother of Christ.

    Until you repent to admit your childish ignorance in all humility before our Father, not me, you in all your righteous indignation will not know eternal life. In other words, let Jesus do the lording, judging, policing, teaching and instructing. He truly lives today to do just that perfectly.

    ““Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’” Matthew 7:21-23

    “For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:20

    “On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus.

    “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

    “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”

    He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

    “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.” Luke 10:25-28

    You remain loved by my Father, Lord, sisters, brothers and I. There is no shame in coming to the Lord admitting you were misled by tradition to believe the New Testament is the word of God, divinely incapable of being wrong, when it speaks only to point to the only sole/soul word of God active before the testament was written, compiled, canonized and/or published. We have all had to suck it up to finally realize Jesus alive in our hearts and minds (and us in His) as the only true and perfectly sufficient Word. It’s in the testaments according to the witnessing perspective of Man.

    Love,

    Herm

    Disclaimer: All biblical quotes presented here are in the Spirit of Truth by the authority of my Lord God and our Father. amen

  • Bones

    Revelation is totally based in ancient history.

    The Beast is Imperial Rome. The false prophet – gentile Christians

    Jesus isn’t coming to machine gun his (or is it your) enemies.

    It’s a condemnation, written by a Christian Jew, of Imperial Rome which destroyed Jerusalem, and of Gentile Christianity.

  • Bones

    Nope, because the people who John was targeting are all dead.

    You seem to be excited that Jesus will slaughter people. Are you aware that according to John the Seer you would be one of those?

  • blusprite

    I’m not exited about anything else than the correct interpretation of the scripture. Which yours is not. I don’t intend to debate why that is the case, though.

  • Herm

    Your comment confuses me as though my comment confused you. Keep this up and we’ll not be able to build a tower to heaven together.

  • Guy Norred

    I’d missed that essay (and I am sad to say, the now rather obvious truth of it). Thanks!

  • One Truth

    “Satan mimics genocide? Really!
    Only in Biblical literalism can such moral relativity be found.”

    You missed my entire point. The motive behind the action spells it all out. On the Right hand ( God )….Righteous Judgement / On the Left hand ( Satan )….Evil hatred.

    Every action from man in all of history stems from one or the other. Whomever they choose to follow.

    “Hitler, Mao, Stalin, Yahweh Ben Yahweh, Jim Jones, David Koresh etc….” They were evil nutters and control freaks.”

    Exactly….Influenced by Satan.

    “Can you tell me why massacring idol worshipers is now an evil act?”

    Again….Is it either a righteous command from God, Our Creator who is Holy and Just and Does, and Will, punish sin, OR…. it is an evil act from evil men, taking it upon themselves to murder out of hate, and then make claims to justify their acts.

    As a non believer, I certainly do not expect you to understand the difference between what is holy and righteous and what is not.

    “John 8:38-45……Read it.”
    Yep. John is having a go at the Jews which is what the whole Gospel is about and who it’s aimed at.”

    That was Jesus who spoke to the (unbelieving) Jews, not the Apostle John. John was just an eyewitness to the account. Just so you know.

    “Unless you’re saying the Jews were murderers for their behaviour in Canaan. Then yes I agree.”

    They were obeying Gods command to clear the ( Promised Land ) of evil, before entering it to take up residency and live there with their families.

    Again, God is Just in His judgements. And He is not finished. At the end of the age, He will wrap it all up on Judgement day. And all those who chose to remain evil, rejecting Jesus Christ for salvation and thus, standing with Satan, will be sent away to eternal punishment, away from God and His children.

  • Herm

    You sound like a little adorable child who got caught wearing mommy’s best dress that she cut down to fit her size and not to trip on with mommy’s clumsy, too big heals. When asked, “How could you ever do this to your mommy?” she replies, “The Devil made me do it!”

    Satan has been deposed as Jesus now has full authority, nearly for 2,000 years, over all heaven and earth. Do you not have faith that Jesus and His Father can protect you from evil?

    We brainwash our children into our traditions. Jesus demands our children hate our brainwashing to become children of God as His siblings.

  • Herm

    “They were obeying Gods command to clear the ( Promised Land ) of evil, before entering it to take up residency and live there with their families.”

    Just like the mercenary crusaders financed by rape and pillage. Did not each pope use that same sanctification when calling to enter and take back the promised Holy Land as the divine “obeying God’s command”?

  • Ron McPherson

    “Because you have a hatred and disdain for Jesus Christ, You constantly
    attack His Word, yet in your heart, you know that you are an outright
    liar and disconnected from the One True God.”

    Whoa there. I know of no one who takes the direct words of Jesus Christ as seriously as Ben Corey, both in his heart and expressed through his actions. He doesn’t need me to defend him, but for many on here like me, who have been positively impacted through this man’s ministry by actually challenging me to take the words of Christ MORE seriously, such an accusation against him I find profoundly troubling.

  • Bones

    Yes, I’m well aware of the silly righteous judgement argument but the sheer fact is if American soldiers went and slaughtered every member of the Taliban and their wives and cut the throats of their boys and brought the virgin girls home as their wives, we would be horrified and there would rightly be a string of court martials no matter how much the soldiers thought they were being righteous or how righteous their commander was.

    “As a non believer, I certainly do not expect you to understand the difference between what is holy and righteous and what is not.”

    Lol. Even an atheist can see evil for what it is. Christians can’t and say evil is good because it is written in a book.

    “They were obeying Gods command to clear the ( Promised Land ) of evil, before entering it to take up residency and live there with their families.”

    Just like ISIS claimed to be.

    Ancient Israelites ethnically cleanse a population = Hooray.

    ISIS ethnically cleanses a population = Boo

    Promised Land = Caliphate. There are so many mirrors between the behaviour of ISIS and Ancient Israel.

    I suppose it’s a shame that it didn’t really happen.

  • One Truth

    “Rethink Biblical Inerrancy”

    His own statement.

    “challenging me to take the words of Christ MORE seriously”

    He believes Gods word is errant, so he calls God a liar. I would say that is SERIOUS allright.

    Comparing Islam to Christianity……Teaches that there is no eternal hell for the unsaved….He is a LIAR and a FALSE TEACHER to say the least. Follow whom you will Ron.

  • Herm

    God is the Word perfectly and divinely sufficient for all who are one in God and all of God in them. Would you dare to believe anything less?

  • One Truth

    Because I already know that you do not trust or believe God or His word Herm, I do not expect you to understand truth either. ANYONE who insists that Satan is either not real or that he is inactive is BLIND.

    The reallity of Satan and his dealings has nothing to do with my faith or Gods protection over me. I trust God, so therefore I am His child and I am safe from my enemy.

  • One Truth

    The Catholic church nor the Pope have ANYTHING to do with GOD. They are just another Wolf in sheeps clothing. So yes, they’re actions were and still are evil.

  • Ron McPherson

    “Do not judge so that you will not be judged. For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.” Matthew 7:1-2

    “But if you had known what this means, ‘I desire compassion, and not a sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the innocent.” Matthew 12:7

    “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The
    second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 22:36-40

    “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35

    “Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person.” Colossians 4:6

  • Herm

    There is only one Spirit of truth that the Bible you worship to plead full allegiance tries to point you directly toward. The Spirit of truth is a relational journey through to the end of eternity as the final destination. I know the Spirit of truth intimately for He is in me and I am in Him. Why would I ever need to go back to the road sign pointing to Him?

  • Herm

    So if you do not maintain allegiance to the universal church which theology do you accept as the one truth?

  • One Truth

    “the Bible you worship”

    You are so silly Herm. I do not worship GODS HOLY INERRANT SCRIPTURE, The Bible, I just accept it as GODS TRUTH and believe it. It is the WORD of GOD.

    “I know the Spirit of truth intimately for He is in me and I am in Him. Why would I ever need to go back to the road sign pointing to Him?”

    Herm, If He truly lived in you as you say, You would have never left the sign pointing to Him. Thus you have followed a different path and wandered away. I suspect it is the Wide Path.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    “In the OT, God made it really clear He is “loving and compassionate, slow to anger”… Stated quite clearly to and through Moses and through David and others, but also that He is a just God, stated clearly to and through the same.”

    It concerns me that if a person says they are one way but act like plenty of other people we call something else, you would take their word for it.

  • Investigator

    You are aware there are Nazis today right, in this country right?

    http://www.americannaziparty.com

  • Investigator

    Because they have a secular government. Why don’t you google it?

    “If you say so.”

    Is it you don’t believe the Almighty has these powers or that you don’t believe in the Almighty?

  • One Truth

    “Do not judge so that you will not be judged. For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured
    to you.” Matthew 7:1-2″

    Boy is this bit of scripture so loosely thrown around by those who have NO understanding of its true meaning.

    There is a MAJOR difference between Judging and Admonishing. I would suggest that you do your research.

    Judging : Luke 7:36-48

    Admonishing : 2 Corinthians 7:8-13

    Instructed to Admonish : 2 Timothy 4:1-5. Read it and learn.

    “Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person.” Colossians 4:6″

    Yes. Have you ever put salt on a wound? It burns before it heals. Those who are spiritually injured ( unsaved ) will either leave the salt on their wounds and let it heal them, or brush it off and let the wounds remain.

    Just as Jesus dealt differently with the False Teachers, who were lying, and knew better, and misleading many, So do I.

    If Benjamin wants to confess his sins and repent from lying and misleading others away from Gods Truth, I would certainly accept him as a brother in Christ. Until that happens, he remains on the side of the enemy, who Jesus calls a liar and the father of ALL lies.

    This is serious business Ron. It no game when peoples souls are at stake..

  • Trilemma

    They were obeying Gods command to clear the ( Promised Land ) of evil…

    Just because the ancient Israelites wrote in their history book that God commanded them to do what they did does not mean that God actually commanded them to do it. The ISIS claim that they are doing what God commands is absolutely no different than the ancient Israelite claim that God commanded them to do what they did.

  • One Truth

    I believe God and His Word Herm. Not so hard to understand.

  • One Truth

    JESUS CHRIST the MESSIAH.

  • One Truth

    Sorry Trilemma, There is only ONE TRUE GOD. And because Gods word is true, I believe it.

  • Investigator

    It is just further evidence chipping away at the notion that the Torah couldn’t have been written until the 6th century BC, along with the internal evidence.

  • Herm

    Oh, “One Truth”, you are so silly. You are not reflecting the timeline of when and how the Gospel was shared in the word of God. The New Testament is no more than a chronicled witness to the spread of the proclaimed “Good News” that the Word lives to teach us all in the will of His Father. Though Matthew and Mark are similar there are still differences in their theoretically first hand eye witness report. John, also an eye witness, is truly different in how he saw Jesus. The physician Luke, a trained diagnostician, wrote first from his relationship with Paul’s conversion and then his research among living witnesses of the Messiah.

    The book of Acts chronicles the growth of Jesus’ disciples after the fact so could not possibly be the word of God that the disciples were acknowledging but is a testament to the word of God.

    Why would I ever want to hang out for the rest of my eternal spiritual life at some old rusting road sign? That would smack of really desiring to be on my knees singing songs of praise to my God forever more or sitting on a cloud strumming a harp unceasingly. Each would be an eternal hell for me, maybe not you.

    The truth is time, even God’s, does not stop for anyone, including God, so we can’t remain still or go back. We must always be in a state of change. I choose to progress forward with the Guide who knows the Way.

    The Bible contains no more inspired truth than those today who witness their relationship with and in God to all nations of this world.

    You are free to accept the Bible as the word of God and to that choice you will be held responsible as will all of us to our individual choices.

    There is only one word of God incapable of being wrong and that is from the mouth of Jesus.

  • Investigator

    “I suppose it’s a shame that it didn’t really happen.”

    Says you.

  • Herm

    Then you know that you do not need the Bible for in it those who first proclaimed Jesus as Lord had no Bible to rest their case in.

  • Trilemma

    Unfortunately, the Bible is not 100% God’s word. There’s a lot of human inspired words and opinions in there too.

  • One Truth

    “Each would be an eternal hell for me”

    And without worshiping the Lamb Of God, that is where you shall spend eternity.

    “There is only one word of God incapable of being wrong and that is from the mouth of Jesus.”

    And by your own admission, you deny Him and His Word as Truth.

    Have a good day Herm, I am done wasting my time with you and your nonsense.

  • Herm

    I wish you well!

  • Investigator

    I’ve thought about it for more than 35 years, I think I know more about what I think than you do particularly when you have a habit of making unsubstantiated accusations of racism against people you don’t know.

  • Investigator

    “These acts were done under the authority of an inerrant Bible.”

    What unmitigated horse manure!

  • One Truth

    Ok Trilemma, If you say so.

  • Herm

    You are loudly and boldly proclaiming the Truth! Those who first did, as chronicled in the Bible, did just the same without the Bible and only the Messiah.

  • Herm

    … (s)he said (s)he said …

  • Investigator

    What did you read on the internet to justify your hatred of Christians?

  • One Truth

    “did just the same without the Bible and only the Messiah.”

    Of course Herm, They were there with Him, we were not. So, filled with and lead by the Holy Spirit, they wrote the New Testament for us to have. How nice of God to give us His Word.

    Good Day.

  • Investigator

    “There’s not a skerrick of evidence for an Israelite invasion of Canaan or genocide.

    In fact the evidence says the contrary.”

    Oh yes, the evidence fits exactly with what the Bible claims, destroyed cities and all destroyed with in a very short period. The problem is that the destruction is dated before the supposed arrival of the Israelites. Solve the chronology and the puzzle then fits.

  • Investigator

    “Summary: Personhood is determined by functioning brains, nothing else.”

    That is YOUR opinion, which millions do not share. Also, I assume by your argument that you would therefore be against abortion after 25 weeks regardless of whether the Mother desired to continue her pregnancy or not.

    If the unborn could speak, they would be crying out against the butchers to keep their choices off their fetal bodies.

  • Investigator

    Although the link gives A reason for the homelessness, why do YOU think homelessness is so rampant with homosexual youth?

  • Bill

    Not sure exactly what you mean, but for the record: I think People do what they actually believe. What a person says has little bearing on me.Actions matter, as Jesus said “by the fruit you will know them”.

  • Trilemma

    I think if someone was able to synchronize Biblical and secular chronologies, the result could be quite interesting.

  • Investigator

    Ron, I’m new here and with the exception of one article, all of Ben’s seem to be attacking Christians, attacking the Church, and attacking the word of God. Like the old saying goes, with friends like that, who needs enemies?

  • Ron McPherson

    “Boy is this bit of scripture so loosely thrown around by those who have NO understanding of its true meaning. There is a MAJOR difference between Judging and Admonishing. I would suggest that you do your research. ”

    Haha, you just can’t help yourself can you? Here’s the passage in context (Matthew 7:1-3): “Do not judge so that
    you will not be judged. 2 For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. 3 Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? ”

    I was trying to be gracious in my responses (still trying). Of course there is a time for judging. I intentionally didn’t quote verse 3 in the hopes you could get the point on your own. It’s the speck and log thing. Now if you’re convinced that your points are offered in the spirit of genuine love and concern for others, and that you have a special revelation from God to call out others by
    purporting to know the genuineness of their relationship to Christ, and to know the fruit they have borne throughout the entirety of their profession of faith, and to have the mind of God 24/7 as to know who is
    (and who is not) really His child, to be utterly blameless in the sight of God, full of the Spirit at all times, then by all means fire away. You’ll forgive the rest of us for being a bit skeptical in not assuming you to be the Lord’s spokesman sent to
    herald His truth to those who may already know Him intimately. Let’s
    face it. Jesus said people will know we’re His disciples by the love we
    have for one another, not by how literal we view the OT.

    By the way, I’ve always considered it either odd (or cowardly) to ‘admonish’ another while using an alias. There’s nothing necessarily wrong with not using your real name here (though the moniker “One Truth” seems telling), but to expect someone to receive your ‘admonishment’ from an anonymous source (all the while accusing them of hating their Lord) is nonsensical. Think about it.

  • Investigator

    ““Do not judge so that you will not be judged. For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.” Matthew 7:1-2”

    Did you make that reply to Ben when he attacked Kim Davis? Attacked Mike Huckabee? Attacked Franklin Graham? Attacked the word of God? Attacked the Church of God?

    Mathew 7:1,2, the favorite go-to verse for those who claim to be Christian yet reject Christ’s word, when challenged by other believers.

    Jude verse 3, “…earnestly contend for the faith…”

    Phil 1:6 “…I am put here for the defense of the gospel.”

    So when Ben makes fun of, or derides those who may have purchased a “Patriot’s Bible” he is doing harm to the body of Christ.

    “…by actually challenging me to take the words of Christ MORE seriously…”

    The only challenge I’m seeing is his challenging whether the words of Christ ARE the words of Christ.

  • Herm

    “One Truth” you truly miss the mark. You, too, can be filled with and led by the Holy Spirit, today. You, too, could be writing a testament to this fact in the same divine Inspiration as those nearly 2,000 years ago. The Holy Spirit is in Jesus and Jesus in Him and is the Word available to each of us in Him and He in us. We are the witnesses today!

  • Investigator

    The scriptures from the Old Testament don’t count? The scriptures that testify of a coming Messiah, ie., Jesus.

  • Investigator

    As you’ve stated elsewhere, you don’t believe this so #1, it is disingenuous. #2, you know that this was how the Almighty dealt with certain nations during Old Testament times and that NO where are we today, commanded to do likewise.

  • Ron McPherson

    Well there’s no denying that Ben calls out what he feels is hypocrisy. I suppose it boils down to how it’s received.

  • Ron McPherson

    Tu quoque

  • Investigator

    Well said.

  • LadySunami

    I would not abort after 25 weeks, but it is not up to me to make choices on behalf of other women. Apparently you still do not understand my analogy of being forced to act as a human dialysis machine. No one can take or use parts of a person’s body without their permission. It doesn’t matter what I think about fetuses after 25 weeks. I cannot and will not force a woman to allow her body to be used by someone else.

    If the unborn would speak, they wouldn’t be crying out against anything. They don’t care. They can’t care. Caring what happens to you requires a functioning brain, which as I keep pointing out to you, at least 98.6% of fetuses which are aborted lack.

  • Investigator

    “Yep. John is having a go at the Jews which is what the whole Gospel is about and who it’s aimed at.”

    NO, the gospel writer tells us himself why he wrote it.

    But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. JN 20:31

    And guess what, that is the context of JN 8:38-45; he is demonstrating to an unbelieving audience that he is the Christ, the Son of God.

  • Investigator

    From an unbelievers standpoint, you could say this. However, as this is supposed to be a Christian site, albeit one that continually attacks Christians, the Church, and the word of God, one would also suppose that the readers would attempt to view the Old Testament through the eyes of God, not man. I see no attempt among those smearing today’s church with the cleansing of evil by the ancient Israelites, to do so. It is also worth noting that unbelievers find it perfectly comfortable here in “Formerly Fundie” as their unbelief is rarely challenged.

  • Investigator

    They had the Old Testament which pointed to a coming Messiah, Jesus.

  • Oh, I’m sorry. You meant white power organizations calling themselves Nazis, not actual national socialists.

    If two white supremacists were getting married and ask an open to the public wedding cake business for a cake, and the owner was Jewish, yes, I would expect that owner to provide a cake, although I can’t imagine white supremacists patronizing a Jewish-owned business.

    Now, let me ask you. If a white supremacist owned a cake shop, and two Jews wanted to get married and ordered a cake, should the white supremacist be allowed to refuse to make them a cake on the grounds of not wanting Jews to reproduce?

  • Herm

    You obviously do not get the picture of testimony here. Please, I am not trying to speak down to you but directly as one equal to another. Can’t you see that if you reciprocally actually know the Messiah prophesied as one with you in Him and Him in you there is no conceivable need for the now past testimony that He is coming for He is here, right now, today? He is my active and only Lord.

  • Al Cruise

    Read archived sermons and newspaper editorials from conservative Christian leaders of the southern Churches from slavery times , up till Jim Crow to the 1960’s. I understand this is very difficult truth for you to face, fundamentalism and inerrancy will do that.

  • Herm

    He had come, died and ascended; the Old Testament fulfilled. The Good News, the Gospel, was the Spirit of truth who, when accepted, united each as one in God and God in each as little children disciples of God right then. I must assume that you have not experienced the complete whelming (baptism) of the Holy Spirit that John the Baptist proclaimed would come from Jesus. The same Spirit John witnessed as the “dove” alighting on Jesus after His cleansing by water.

    “He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of
    Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.” Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures.

    He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance for the
    forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”” Luke 24:44-49

    I testify that I have been clothed with power from on high and so can you!

  • Investigator

    The issue is not the providing of the wedding cake, at least not for me. The issue is celebrating the joining together of what the Bible condemns, homosexuality. If it were my business, I’d sell wedding cakes to Joseph Stalin, obvious and overt homosexuals, or even madame Barbara Boxer. What I wouldn’t do is attend the celebration as a caterer.

    Also, it is homosexuals who are pushing these issues and purposely so. It isn’t as if the wedding cake business questions the sexual orientation of its customers. It is homosexuals forcing these situations to force their lifestyle on the rest of the community. Live and let live is so yesterday, now it is about using the force of law to force others to comply AND agree with their lifestyle choices.

    Do YOU agree with those making death threats against these folks? The vandalizing of their property? The fact that they couldn’t open until the police were ready to protect them from bodily harm?

    So much for live and let live.

  • Investigator

    As one of the targets of his abuse, I can tell you in no uncertain terms, that it is NOT well received. It is also not offered in love…more like patronizing condescension.

    When I hear sermons exhorting the body to love as Christ loved the church, greater obedience, and service to the disadvantaged, I know these are given out of love for Jesus and a desire to see his church take up the Great Commission. As a member of the church, I think I understand the difference between feeding the sheep, and beating the sheep.

  • Herm

    … and so are all of us to be judged in kind according to who we accept as our master, the Bible testifying to the past or our Lord Jesus reigning today. Extra credit will be given to those who dare to speak boldly about Jesus but will not overcome those who do not know Jesus personally to trust Him implicitly.

    “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ Matthew 7:21-23

  • Investigator

    No, the standard isn’t what some Christian leaders say or fail to say. It isn’t what southern Churches do or don’t do; it is the word of God that is the standard and it is irrelevant if large segments or even the whole church falls into disobedience (as Israel was want to do).

    It was the fundamentalists, the conservative Christians who stood up (and suffered as a result) to the aggressions of Hitler. The liberal Christians and academia went along with him. Should America ever face a similar situation, will liberal Christians choose Jesus, or as they did in the past, a Hitler.

  • Investigator

    “I must assume that you have not experienced the complete whelming (baptism) of the Holy Spirit that John the Baptist proclaimed would come from Jesus.”

    Well, you know what they say about those who assume.

  • Ron McPherson

    Often I see folks coming on his blog (not saying you do) disagreeing with his stance and certain issues, and instead of engaging in rational discussion, just point blank condemn him by calling him a false teacher, a wolf, one who hates the Lord, one who is excluded from the kingdom, one who hates Scripture, etc. Then when he retorts, the one picking the fight somehow feels victimized (again not saying that’s your circumstances, but I’ve seen this countless times on here). Also, Ben’s passion is calling out hypocrisy, those who assert to know the full counsel of God, yet all the while picking and choosing portions of Scripture to adhere to, but condemning others for doing the same. Further, to my knowledge, Ben has never went so far as to accuse another of being unregenerate (in fact, I’ve seen him do quite the contrary). For me personally, that’s where the line should be drawn. Just my 2 cents. Anyway, peace. On one thing we can agree: Jesus is Lord!

  • TeDeumLaudamus

    Did you not read what I wrote? There is, after all, the reality of incarnational evil, which clearly includes all the horrors and evils you mention above. Railing against those is important, but more important in the greater scheme of things is to live the life that you have been
    given where you are. Being a defender of the truth, of the unborn, of those in need within your own community could hardly be done better by people from afar, after all. Most of us simply are not called to do great things that all the world can see, but, as Mother Teresa said so
    well, to “do small things with great love”, and she was truly great.

    That’s where one’s personal focus should be instead of being consumed by huge global miseries which most of us are not (usually) able to impact except by prayer. That doesn’t mean we are to be ignorant and unaware or Pollyanna-ish about these realities, but rather, realistic about what we, as individuals living ordinary lives as citizens of our communities and nations, can do to better the lives of the people with whom we come in contact in the course of our daily lives. That will have more impact on global misery than our speaking out is ever likely to have, especially when done in a blog’s comments section.

    Being well-informed and speaking out when appropriate is a good thing, even a duty, but it’s not good if that is
    our focus and diverts our attention from our duty where we live. We’re supposed to be helping people and changing things around us for the better. Grousing about injustices to native Americans isn’t helping them one bit, but perhaps working in a food bank or a soup kitchen and actually talking to someone who shows up hungry will change their life for the better. Or maybe changing the oil on a struggling single mother’s car will enable her to get to work and not lose her only source of income.

    If you think that is the Harry Potter world, I fear you haven’t a clue what I’m talking about.

    Now, peace nuktqla to you, Chris.

  • Herm

    … and I know the difference from feeding the bull and beating the bull. The church you speak of is not Jesus’ for Jesus’ church worships only in the spirit.

    You and your religious church are wrong and decry abuse only because this has been so lovingly pointed out. Has Ben once entered your sanctuary to bring down the wrath of God upon you as you so defensively invoke within the sanctuary Ben so graciously services?

    Who has allowed your insane attempts to discredit, demean and persecute Ben’s honest attempts to allow discourse?

  • Herm

    I do need to interject here. By the spirit I sense from both you and him/her one, or both, of you does not know the Lord Jesus personally. My sense of oneness with you is biased so I will not pass judgment and leave that up to our Lord.

  • Herm

    Ooh, that was a big gotcha’, chalk one up for you! So as to not make an ass out of you, I know that you have not experienced the complete whelming of the Holy Spirit. You can if you try to accept only Jesus as your benevolent master and truly divine Brother.

  • chopin

    you know the thing I think is investigator and one truth’s deal is
    that they twist the same words from the same book I read to accuse, exclude, condemn and slander people they don’t agree with. ‘group think’ is their lord IMO & it’s just like they’re still in high school and have found that
    that is the the way to roll in order to be accepted and popular in their ‘in group’.
    it truly is spiritual warfare! flesh and blood cannot reveal this to one IMO. personally I try everyday to use the plow of love on my field of this earthly experience. I see the wheat is growing up with tares! the master bids them grow together and let him take care of the result at harvest time.

  • Investigator

    “On one thing we can agree: Jesus is Lord!”

    Yes, thanks Ron. There is benefit in having someone who attempts to be a mediator.

  • Ron McPherson

    Appreciate the kind words, thanks

  • Well, there are modern day Neo-Nazis who carry on their unfortunate heritage of crimes against humanity.

  • Investigator

    “…that is the the way to roll in order to be accepted and popular in their ‘in group’.”

    As I’ve said a number of times, I don’t have a group and the only one I need to find acceptance by is the Lord Christ Jesus.

    “…that they twist the same words from the same book I read…”

    Now it is YOU who accuse and you do so without a scintilla of evidence.

  • Herm

    You, my friend, are the evidence.

  • Herm

    The Word, the sword, is from the mouth of Jesus not the Bible. For those in Jesus and Jesus in them the sword is wielded today to divide the Bible from the Word that each of mankind might have a fair choice between the dark or the light. You cannot choose to live in both. Eternal life only comes directly from the Spirit given by Jesus and the Father.

  • Ron McPherson

    It’s my hope that all here can know the Lord Jesus in a real and personal way. God bless.

  • chopin

    yes! In the 12 step program of Alcoholics Anonymous if investigator and one truth were fellow alcoholics the term we alcoholic in recovery would say about them is that they’re 12 stepping us. that means that we are observing someone who is still very much in their disease, behavior & negativity out of control. investigator and one truth very much remind me of dry drunks. Sad! )*=
    I’ve often seen these addicts stumble into meetings ranting they’re insane rants about how to interpret the big book their way & their program is THE WAY, THE ONLY WAY. drunks in recovery all know that it in order to do it ‘their way’ we have to be able to read their minds and willingness to go along with them constitutes codependence. what is so sad and hurts me personally when I encounter people like investigator and one truth is that I know I can be just like them. passing judgement on them is passing judgment on myself in that if I don’t maintain constant contact with the Holy Spirit I will, by default, automatically turn to people places and things and they will become the things I worship and idolize. they will become the things I identify with. they will become my identity! I will, because I have, live in constant fear that My comfort zone will be challenged, changed or lost. in my innermost heart I know that that’s what my worst fear & eventually it’s going to happen. so IMO that explains investigator’s & one truth’s fear based reality. in truth they are the living dead. the hope for them is that they come here and blog their disapproval of their anxiety to us and we pray for them. god works in mysterious ways to liberate those who can otherwise find no liberation from their addictions.

  • Herm

    You know my brother, you know. Love you and thank you for your service!

  • No, of course I don’t agree with death threats or destruction no matter what side is being represented, but what you’re saying matches the Pat Robertson quotes I sent you to a T – that the gay community has an agenda to force everyone to support being gay or become gay themselves or whatever.

    It’s this way of seeing the world – Muslims are a hair away from invading America, gay people are working to force Christians to approve of homosexuality, Planned Parenthood runs an underground black market of baby parts, Jade Helm will allow President Obama to take over Texas – these are fear-based overstatements based on a handful of data that is not counterbalanced by any other data, and they are a terrible engine to try to run the kingdom of God on.

    The kingdom of God says I will love, heal, forgive, sacrifice, and reconcile even if the world around me wants to kill me. That’s what I want to embody. I would die for that ideal. I wouldn’t die for the right not to cater a gay wedding.

  • But of course, Christianity can never fail, it can only be failed. It is perfect and (effectively) so is every true adherent, whereas anyone who ever grotesquely errs is, by definition, no true Christian. The fact that this self-selection means a Christian can never really be wrong, or that every Christian exists as a Schrodinger’s Cat to be embraced or disavowed based upon the eventual outcome of their actions, is naturally quite beside the point.

  • Interesting circular logic, that. Would you believe it if it were false? Could you not believe it if you thought it was true?

  • Snooterpoot

    I love your spirit, Bones. You rock.

  • After 25 weeks is when fetal viability is relatively high (50-80%), so the means by which one ends a pregnancy at that point is by inducing birth. Prior to that, fetal viability drops sharply (40-70% at week 24, 10-35% at week 23, 0-10% at week 22, and all but 0% at week 21 with no recorded cases of survival prior to that) and so inducing birth and stopping the fetus’s heart quickly wind up having the same outcome, arguably the latter being more kind than going forward with weeks in an incubator and a high likelihood of crippling abnormality. I’ve loved my share of people who were born several weeks premature, but I don’t envy them.

  • Not just homosexual, also transgender or various other proscribed statuses. I think it’s because they are either thrown out of their homes or feel forced to flee them to escape abuse. Anecdotally, the latter was the case for me.

  • Herm

    What I understand from the lesson of the wheat and the chaff is that the field can be all who call themselves disciples of the only Christ, whether they know Him or not. No matter how much the chaff plead their case at harvest Jesus will of necessity cast them to the winds to gather up the healthy wheat who know to learn from only Him. Those who believe they will one day meet Jesus on a cloud because they claimed the Bible as His word will be sorely disappointed, as in weeping and gnashing of teeth. We must know the Word to learn from Him as His students (disciples) before the harvest.

  • All because you exclude him from your consideration of being a Christian himself. From the lens of someone accepting Ben as a Christian, he is criticizing something within the church, an illness of the spirit he hopes to cure. If you dismiss him as not being a Christian, then what follows might well seem like an attack from outside.

  • Herm

    Good point! Paul was emphatic in his organization of the church that we only criticize from within toward those who claimed membership but weren’t quite in the Spirit.

  • Kevin Osborne

    A powerful statement, chopin.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Meow.

  • Investigator

    “…that they twist the same words from the same book I read…”

    My response was:
    “Now it is YOU who accuse and you do so without a scintilla of evidence.”

    In addition to not being a careful writer, you are not a careful reader. The evidence demanded should be that fulfilling the accusation, ie., the twisting of scripture. Notice, chopin cited not one example.

  • Investigator

    Blah blah blah

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Yes, abortion at any time is murder of an innocent . It is against the law to murder. To even accidentally kill someone is illegal. Your “lives of any kind” isn’t working for me. They don’t value “lives of any kind” Just what the culture deems viable, doesn’t work for me. When it comes to a human created be God.

  • Bones

    Critical reading of scripture is not twisting it, no matter how much you bleat about it. Indeed it is searching for the truth.

  • Bones

    Therefore your assumption/presumption is wrong.

    God’s Word is true because I said it is.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Be careful with that “dishonest” ol chuckle monkey. Maybe in your world of lies. But in the real world. Elected officials duty is to stand for their constituents, against over bearing government. Our country has a long history of it. In fact you wouldn’t even have the right to say what you do. If it wasn’t for our fore fathers breaking the law. Its called civil disobedience. Look it up. Chuckles Bra!

  • Bones

    The Old Testament was written by men as a justification of the existence of Israel. Why do you think God had anything to do with it?

    Do you think many Jews follow the Torah?

    I’d say your understanding of the Bible is being challenged hence your comment.

    Most of us were there once as well.

    Open up your mind and accept that others may be right and you may be wrong.

    And that’s ok.

  • Bones

    So they were like Ancient Israel’s then.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Such a liberal clone. Every one knows the two homos specifically looked for a Christian owned bakery. On purpose to make the court case happen. Why wouldn’t the Nazis do the same thing to gain power over the people they hate.

  • Something I dearly wish Christians had inherited more strongly from Judaism. I’m very fond of the bit of Tanakh story wherein God himself disagrees with the interpretation of scripture and is outvoted by the rabbis, who he then praises for doing so.

  • Ahem, there’s a web of contradictions in your statement. First, an elected official is part of government and cannot stand against their own. Second, if it is civil disobedience, then it is, by definition, violating the law and thus subject to the penalty of doing so.

  • Bones

    It’s called self-reflection.

    Christians have a history of thinking that any criticism of their cherished beliefs is an attack on God/the Bible/ the Church/ themselves (which is what it boils down to).

    What we believe is important to the God of the Universe isn’t it?

    I mean God believes what you or I believe, right?

    You know a lot of fundamentalists end up as liberals because they love the Bible and they love truth.

    That’s scary, huh?

  • Jeff Preuss

    I think the reception varies by receiver. Some see it as a fervent adherence to God’s Word with a spiritual discernment that may lead one to view the Words differently from others, while others see any questioning or discussion as an attack on the Lord Himself.

    We must always be allowed to question, or else what good is our faith in Him?

  • Everyone does not know this, but suppose for a moment that it was absolutely true and these are actual Nazi “homos” (quite a loving word, that) who maliciously sought out someone to start a lawsuit.

    So?

    It remains illegal to discriminate. This is not news. It is not mitigated by an appeal to religion.

  • Herm

    … says the sheared sheep.

  • Bones

    Yes, he’s having a go at the Jews. Even from the Prologue – the Darkness is Judaism. It’s clear throughout John’s Gospel and the verses you cite. Only those who believe in Jesus are saved, therefore Jews are not.

    The author is attacking Judaism all throughout the Gospel which reflects the context of the writer’s exclusion from the synagogue. it is indeed like the writings of a hurt, jilted lover.

  • Bones

    What on Earth is a Patriot’s Bible?

    Like, really?

    Jesus was a yankee republican gunowner?

    Wonder if we have those over here.

  • LadySunami

    Yeah, that’s not true. They went to the cake shop they did because they had previously bought a cake from that establishment on behalf of another couple and had enjoyed said cake very much. If you had read the case documents you would know this.

  • Investigator

    But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. JN 20:31

  • Herm

    Okay, this one time we will spell it out for you. You twist the same words from the same book chopin reads as those words are meant to be read and together work in harmony. You make yourself as an irritating noise because you seem to be unable to comprehend the meaning behind the good words so many have shared with you from most every angle they could be pictured.

    I was an investigator, troubleshooter, diagnostician and fixer in three different sciences for over 40 years and the first talent gifted me for that success that I enjoyed was to interpret the need of my customers as they were and not how I wanted them to be. You try in vain force to make everything fit the way you want them to be when they cannot be the way you want them to be. You are the evidence by your fruit.

  • LadySunami

    There is a difference between judging a person’s personal beliefs/habits and seeking to prevent them from causing harm to others. Ben only does the latter. You can believe all the horribly inaccurate things about God and the Bible you want and Ben will not judge you for it, but attempt to hurt or bully others with those beliefs and he will call you out on it.

  • Investigator

    “I’d say your understanding of the Bible is being challenged hence your comment.”

    I am seriously OK with that. I have been challenged in the past and been forced to alter my views. Being open to change doesn’t mean surrendering at the first sign of resistance, particularly when one hasn’t been presented with compelling evidence.

    Suggesting hell doesn’t exist or that the Bible condones a homosexual lifestyle is a poor beginning and will only be met with a most animated skepticism.

    “Open up your mind and accept that others may be right and you may be wrong.”

    Wise council, but I have seen little indication of its use here in “Formerly Fundie.”

  • One Truth

    “What we believe is important to the God of the Universe isn’t it?”

    The answer to your question is not necessarily. The Almighty’s concern is, do we believe Him.

    “You know a lot of fundamentalists end up as liberals because they love the Bible and they love truth.
    That’s scary, huh?”

    Not at all Bones. 1 John 2:19…….”They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us”

    False teachers and false believers are the majority….Matthew 7:13-14.

  • Investigator

    Here, from the “Formerly Fundie” archive:

    10. If you’ve ever gone to Amazon.com and typed in the words “Fox News Study Bible.”

    So, there’s not one. But if you’ve typed in those words (you know who you are) consider yourself busted. Or, perhaps you actually bought the Duck Commander Study Bible, or the American Patriot’s Bible, both of which would be functional equivalents. Either way, Jesus saw you purchase that.

    “Either way, Jesus saw you purchase that.”

    What a thoroughly repugnant statement to make. To claim that somehow, Jesus would look unfavorably on a themed Bible is just a scurrilous attempt to marginalize those with conservative views. It is a particularly low tactic.

  • Investigator

    “You can believe all the horribly inaccurate things about God and the Bible you want…”

    What on earth are you talking about?

    See the below:

    10. If you’ve ever gone to Amazon.com and typed in the words “Fox News Study Bible.”

    So, there’s not one. But if you’ve typed in those words (you know who you are) consider yourself busted. Or, perhaps you actually bought the Duck Commander Study Bible, or the American Patriot’s Bible, both of which would be functional equivalents. Either way, Jesus saw you purchase that.

    “Either way, Jesus saw you purchase that.”

    Now, wouldn’t you agree that Ben’s statements up above fall into the below category, that he has harmed others by his statements:

    “…and seeking to prevent them from causing harm to others.”

  • One Truth

    Wow Ron. I see that you find it ok for Ben to ( Call it out ) , yet when I Call it out, you say I’m judging……That Ron, is Hypocrisy at its finest.

  • Investigator

    “You twist the same words from the same book chopin reads as those words are meant to be read and together work in harmony.”

    So where’s the beef? Where are these examples of me twisting scripture? You’ve simply repeated empty accusations.

    Never mind Herm, you’re a nice guy but it is too painful to decipher your syntax.

  • One Truth

    Jeff, You are right. We have the right to question. Yet it does not seem like there are many of these (Proclaiming) Christians on these blogs, who have enough faith to ask God for the answer. That is the problem.
    If they would only do so, God would answer and they would then know who is speaking truth from then on.

  • One Truth

    Amen Brother.

  • Investigator

    I am all for the critical reading of scripture and I agree, critical reading in and of itself is not twisting the word.

  • Ron McPherson

    hmm, maybe I missed something. What I saw from you is accusing Ben of hating his Lord. Not sure how you might view that as confronting hypocrisy but whatever. Peace

  • Investigator

    “We must always be allowed to question, or else what good is our faith in Him?”

    Agreed.

  • One Truth

    “Has Ben once entered your sanctuary”

    Our Sanctuary is wherever the people are. Yes, Ben is telling the world, through the internet, that God is a liar, inhumane and unjust. So the REAL followers of CHRIST JESUS Must stand up and proclaim Truth, Just as Jesus commanded us.

    I am not here to force my opinion on the unbelievers, yet there are people searching the internet in droves, looking for answers. And I am here to tear down the works of satan.

    If you don’t like it, Its not for you. But It is for the love of those who will accept the truth of Jesus Christ and His Word.

  • Investigator

    “You know a lot of fundamentalists end up as liberals because they love the Bible and they love truth.”

    No, I not only don’t know that, it is a statement contrary to the experiences of the Church. People are leaving liberal churches in droves precisely because when they learn there that the Bible isn’t God’s word, that Hell doesn’t exist, that Moses didn’t write the Torah, that the Hebrews didn’t destroy the Canaanites, that the Bible can be interpreted in most any way suitable to their lifestyle, many say, “then why bother at all”? Why get up early on Sunday to hear a sermon that tells them the same thing the culture is feeding them through its various organs be it news, entertainment, or academia?

  • One Truth

    “Often I see folks coming on his blog (not saying you do) disagreeing with his stance and certain issues, and instead of engaging in rational discussion”

    First off, The man is a coward. I have respectfully replied, in disagreement of course, to his blogs in the past. Never once has he attempted to reply back at all, let alone to engage in a rational discussion. As a matter of fact, there are at least four others here who write blogs, who have never attempted to engage either. What can they say against a spirit filled child of the Holy God? Nothing….they know better.

    They sure get a kick out of starting an Anti Christian blog though, Attacking Gods children and watching people bicker back and forth.

    People who are followers of the false teachers are one thing. False teachers became what they are, because they’re hearts have become hardened by rejecting Gods Truth for so long. There is no rational discussion with them. They are just like the Pharisees.

    Its the unsuspecting followers that really have a chance.

  • Bones

    That is ridiculous.

  • Bones

    ” To claim that somehow, Jesus would look unfavorably on a themed Bible”

    Like a gay Bible?

    Equating American patriotism with God is one of the problems with your country and the world we have.

  • One Truth

    “By the spirit I sense from both you and him/her one, or both, of you does not know the Lord Jesus personally.”

    Herm, I would suspect that Christ is still trying to trying to get a hold of you.

  • LadySunami

    Have you every actually watched Fox News or visited their site? Harming others for the benefit of a manufactured persecution narrative is their MO. They may not harm people directly, but they sure encourage their viewers to do so. Why would their Bibles be any different?

    I will grant that simply buying the book does not constitute harm to others, but the concern is valid. If said literature wasn’t so likely to inform their actions, it would be strange for him to comment on it.

  • Bones

    Why does it worry anyone or scholarship if people leave churches in droves? Jim Jones had a flock follow him. The biggest drawcards are showman Pentecostal Prosperity types.

    There has to be a question of relevance for churches in this day of the internet. Why do we need to be told what to believe in an age of critical thinking?

    So your whole point to living is tied up in your own literalist understanding of an ancient text.

    If your whole existence, ideology, worldview and eternal future are wrapped up in a correct understanding of the text then you better get it right. And really its academic laziness which keeps people from digging deeper into the texts.

    I can see why it worries you.

  • One Truth

    He is the evidence of the love of Jesus Christ Herm. You are the evidence of Humanism.

  • One Truth

    No, he is simply trying to share his love, and you, just as the Pharisee’s did, are rejecting it.

  • One Truth

    Jesus’s Words ARE Truth.

  • Investigator

    I don’t know Ben or his heart. I make comments on HIS comments and notice that he is continually attacking the body of Christ. Anyone who has been a Christian for a while and has regularly attended service, will have heard numerous messages of exhortation. I don’t recall ever feeling that these were beating the sheep, or condescending, or patronizing, or hurtful in their intent. I do feel Ben’s statements match this description in every respect.

    I’ve had a number of discussions in other venues with people who believe our Founding Fathers were Deists, agnostics, and atheists. They point to selected quotes from the FFs criticizing the church and Christianity as their proof texts. These statements are of the same flavor as I find here in “Formerly Fundie” with the exception that these same founders also make statements in support of Christianity, which I see little of here.

    It is not for me to determine an individual’s salvation or relationship with the Lord. We are called to be fruit inspectors (of the body) and may I be so bold (or perhaps arrogant if you wish) as to suggest I am seeing some overripe fruit.

  • One Truth

    “I’m very fond of the bit of Tanakh story wherein God himself disagrees
    with the interpretation of scripture and is outvoted by the rabbis, who
    he then praises for doing so.”

    What Fable is this from?

  • Bones

    I wish you wouldn’t take verses out of context. What does Matthew’s problems with Judaism have to do with me or anyone really?

    And there’s nothing in John’s citation about having a correct understanding of God but loving your brother. (But then the writer didn’t have a New Testament)

    “The answer to your question is NO. God could care less what we believe. The Almighty’s concern is, Do we believe Him.”

    Lol. You just contradicted yourself.

    I mean every religious group has at some stage held tight to the belief that they possess the Truth.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Todd, you and I have gone ’round before.

    “Yet it does not seem like there are many of these (Proclaiming) Christians on these blogs, who have enough faith to ask God for the answer. That is the problem.” No. The problem is, there are many Christians on this blog who have enough faith to ask God for the answer, and you disagree with the answers received, and as a result publicly dispute the validity of said faiths.

    You previously indicated I am not a true Christian because I am gay. But, God HAS answered me, and it is not a problem for Him.

    It is not your place to decide I am not faithful enough. No matter how I may disagree with you, I would never do the same to you. Our right to question isn’t contingent upon you approving the answer.

  • One Truth

    Gods Children = Drunks…….Well, that’s convincing.

    I would rather direct you to John 8:43-45. But you probably do not have a bible.

  • Jeff Preuss

    “As one of the targets of his abuse, I can tell you in no uncertain terms, that it is NOT well received. It is also not offered in love…more like patronizing condescension.”

    Interesting, since I indicated the way you have spoken to us has the very same effect.

    As one of the targets of your abuse, I ask you…are you feeding me or beating me?

  • Bones

    What I’m observing here is that everything you believe should be above criticism.

    Well that just doesn’t work in the real world and the battle of ideas.

    It would’ve been interesting if the first century Christians had the internet. Paul would be slagging off Peter and Barnabas on his blog and vice versa.

  • One Truth

    “You can believe all the horribly inaccurate things about God and the Bible you want and Ben will not judge you for it”

    Well, here are the fruits of Ben’s teachings……Up and coming Tares. Nice

  • Bones

    Because they’re all over at Charisma or Christianity Today or some wackos Reformed Heresy Hunting site.

    You seem to be angry that someone else has a different and more learned opinion than yourself.

    The dialogue is impossible when you have closed your mind to others and are leaning on your own opinion as God’s.

  • One Truth

    His own words condemn him Ron. Thanks for your concern though.

  • Bones

    Yes, that is a very ironic observation.

    But of course telling people they are false Christians attacking God/Church/World/little ponies is done in love.

    It’s amazing how the victim and persecution mentality comes out when someone disagrees with them.

  • Ron McPherson

    But do you think your opening remarks accusing the man of hating his Lord is really conducive toward healthy discussion? I truly hate confrontation and seriously don’t wish to argue. Hate that you think I was being hypocritical). Forgive me if so. But I came from a background that was less than grace filled so I’m sensitive to Jesus greatest commandment (though I often fall short). I long for the day when we can all sit at the Lords table and unite as one in His love. Really burdened right now for us all (on both ‘sides’ if you will) as we fuss and fight in the name of the Prince of Peace.

  • Bones

    “I am not here to force my opinion on the unbelievers”

    Huh. Aren’t you a guest in someone’s blog?

    If someone came to my house throwing accusations of being a false Christian I would put them out on their ear.

  • One Truth

    The bible gives instructions Herm.

    Herm, Have you ever repented of your sins and been born again by the Holy Spirit?

  • One Truth

    You have ABSOLUTELY NO understanding of Gods Word whatsoever.

  • Bones

    He doesn’t reply because he knows it is meaningless and pointless and incapable of a rational discussion.

    There can be no attempt at dialogue when your whole starting premise about the Bible is wrong.

    Btw the Pharisees were literalists. Not unlike conservative Christians today.

    Oh and I think the Bible’s demonism of the Pharisees is unfair when one studies the context of Judaism in the first century.

  • Bones

    No he isn’t. He’s the evidence of having a myopic approach to scripture.

  • Bones

    You mean the words that the gospel writers had Jesus speaking?

    Like Jews are children of the Devil?

  • One Truth

    “Open up your mind and accept that others may be right and you may be wrong.”

    Sure, open your mind up to Humanism….That’s how satan gets in.

  • Investigator

    I’ll take that into consideration…seriously.

  • Bones

    Probably Talmud.

  • One Truth

    No Bones, God said it is.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Good to know. I’ve been trying to appeal to your capacity for compassion for a bit now, and I think we’ve both been a smidgen heated at each other, when we really likely have a lot more in common than either of us may realize. Peace to you.

  • One Truth

    Well Anonymous Sam, When the Holy Spirit dwells within you and teaches you, one has nothing to question or worry about. I have peace in Truth, Do you?

  • One Truth

    No Herm, God said, she said.

  • Bones

    Then you would know that in studying ANY document the key to understanding is knowing the context of why the author/s is/are writing.

    Critical study of the Torah shows there are multiple authors over hundreds of years and the Gospels were not simply biographies and Revelation is a refutation of the Imperial cult of Rome..

  • I suspect you each see the same of each other, though I don’t think Ben is questioning whether you are truly Christian or not. Liberal Christians tend to skew toward the opinion of thinking other people are Christians doing poorly, rather than being people who aren’t truly Christian at all.

  • Investigator

    The Patriot Bible is not, nor is being a patriot for one’s country, equating patriotism with God. Those are your statements, not mine.

    A gay Bible? Is there such a thing? If so, did they remove all the verses condemning homosexuality?

  • One Truth

    No, more like Sodom, but undercover.

  • Bones

    See what’s concerning is literalist types base their whole worldview on their comprehension.

    Even their basic literalist comprehension though is poor.

  • LadySunami

    You’re one of the ones who believes all sorts of horribly inaccurate things about God and the Bible, OT.
    People willing to justify the wholesale slaughter of entire ethnic groups are not wheat.

  • One Truth

    Really Herm.? I did not walk with Jesus when He was here. That was along time ago.

  • Bones

    That’s garbage. The idea that the US is some theocratic democracy is nonsense. Your history is as bad as any other country’s when it comes to destroying other cultures and perpetuating injustice.

    As for the gay Bible, I give you:

    The Queen James Bible

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Queen-James-Bible/dp/0615724531

  • One Truth

    No Bones, It was just a bad reply. there was just no real comparison at all.

  • One Truth

    So mans ramblings about an uncertain god.. Hmmm

  • One Truth

    Some were, some were not. One example, Nicodemus believed Jesus.

  • Herm

    Are you telling me point blank that I am lying that I am one with Christ and Christ is one in me?

    Are you denying the Holy Spirit as being real?

    Your yelling is truly no different than the crowd yelling, “crucify that poser claiming to be a son of God.” Children of God are alive today on this earth and Jesus is our Lord.

    Read your Bible which was written long after Jesus’ ascension and search for all the times the word spirit is used before the New Testament was written. God does not need nor calls for a Pharisaical police force which facilitated the execution of the first disciples of the Messiah. Ask your Lord God. When you repent then your conversion will be like that of Saul to Paul.

    Your are incensed by what your religion has convinced you and not by the inspiration of the Spirit of truth you do not know in your heart and mind. Go back to your house if you are only going yell out only your ignorance with no regard for the Spirit of Christ Jesus and our Father.

  • Bones

    Or you could say the same about the Old Testament….Hmmm

    I take it you would enjoy living under the Torah….

  • The Talmud, Bava Mezi’a 59a and 59b, roughly translated here: http://www.come-and-hear.com/babamezia/babamezia_59.html

  • Bones

    Yes your reply was….

  • One Truth

    “He doesn’t reply because he knows it is meaningless and pointless and incapable of a rational discussion.”

    Wow, without a discussion with me he could come to this conclusion?

    Bones….Are you coping out for Ben, or did he tell you this?

    “There can be no attempt at dialogue when your whole starting premise about the Bible is wrong.”

    That’s the whole discussion Nitwit……I believe it, you and your cronies do not.

    Gods Word has NEVER been shown to be inaccurate Bones, Ever. Are you stating that Now, You have the facts to disprove? I am all ears Bones.

  • One Truth

    “Huh. Aren’t you a guest in someone’s blog?”

    No Bones, This is not Ben’s house…….

    “If someone came to my house throwing accusations of being a false Christian I would put them out on their ear.”

    You Think you would.

  • Bones

    Ummm no. The Gospel is clear that Judaism is the Darkness that has rejected the Light. Nicodemus represents the Jews who believed.

    Same goes with Matthew’s comment that has the Jews saying “His blood shall be on us and on our children”. It’s anti-Judaic propaganda.

  • If that does not sound intrinsically insane to you, I’m not sure anything I say could convince you that it is.

  • Bones

    It’s pretty obvious.

    Good to see the personal insults come out which is evidence as to why he doesn’t entertain your nonsense.

    You should be happy he lets you post in his blog.

  • Bones

    So this isn’t Ben’s blog…..

  • Herm

    “One Truth” as a whelmed disciple of the Messiah I have only one Instructor:

    ““But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have one Teacher, and you are all brothers. And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one Instructor, the Messiah. The greatest among you will be your servant. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” Matthew 23:8-12

    I have felt and expressed sincere regret or remorse about my wrongdoing and sin when I was sprinkled, immersed, ordained, and directly with God when I in all humility invited the Holy Spirit to be active without ceasing in my heart and mind even if I thought I was sinning. Since then I found I wasn’t sinning as much as the religion of Christianity told me I was.

    You are missing the mark hugely when you cannot recognize the Spirit of God in your midst. I pray that you learn to hate your religious family to become a disciple of Jesus.

  • That’s an aggressive sort of peace you have there. I think I’d hate to see you fearful, or angry.

    I enjoy a truth you likely wouldn’t recognize or affirm. I suspect you’d find it anathema.

  • Bones

    The author of John is totally cutting himself and his community off from the synagogue and Judaism.

    Now there’s no going back for them.

    Belief is not to be found in Judaism but in Christ alone.

  • One Truth

    Well Ron, I respect your response and would like to say that it is a shame that these discussions must take place at all, but can I ask you a honest question? How is it that Ben’s anti Christian blogs do not offend you, or better yet, cause grief to the Holy Spirit who is in you as you read them, if infact you are a Born Again Christian? And I am not saying you are not, but please explain.

    Because it bothers me deeply, in more ways than one. This is exactly how people are mislead. Please read Acts 20:28-32

  • Bones

    Right back at you dude.

  • Herm

    Your bloated pride of having mastered your religion’s theories has blinded you to the Spirit.

  • Bones

    Yeah sure…

    Like human rights, nasty thing humanism.

    Btw Jesus was the greatest humanist.

    You must really hate life.

  • Bones

    That’s your claim.

  • One Truth

    Well Ron, I respect your response and would like to say that it is a
    shame that these discussions must take place at all, but can I ask you a
    honest question? How is it that Ben’s anti Christian blogs do not
    offend you, or better yet, cause grief to the Holy Spirit who is in you
    as you read them, if infact you are a Born Again Christian? And I am
    not saying you are not, but please explain.

    Because it bothers me deeply, in more ways than one. This is exactly how people are mislead. And this grieves our Lord.

    By the way, please read Acts 20:28-32

  • Bones

    The prosperity teachers called. Their Holy Spirit disagrees with yours.

  • One Truth

    I am not angry about opinions Bones, I am concerned for others that come here and read this Satanic TRASH. You can believe what you like, I already know where you stand. As sad as it is, yet that is your choice.

  • Bones

    Nope, they thought they were doing the righteous thing and executing God’s judgement which according to you is good.

  • Herm

    You so ignore that the reason my living and reigning Lord has full authority over heaven and earth is because He fulfilled being the Son of Man and the Son of God. He was the first to lead in our humanism in love and summing up the entire Law and Prophets as recorded in Matthew 7:12. He never acted on earth as your are acting now. You truly do act more like Saul than Paul as an example you might be able to understand.

  • Herm

    You would suspect wrong. Let me use a written example I can testify by my own life as truth and actively real today in all disciples of Christ.

    “If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.” John 14:15-21

    I hope you too can come to know the Spirit of truth in you. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.

  • LadySunami

    And how does one verify one has the Holy Spirit dwelling within them? There are others who share your confidence and are certain the Holy Spirit is dwelling within them, yet they interpret scripture very differently from you.

  • Herm

    You simply have no idea how far you have missed the mark.

  • Herm

    Why cannot you trust the Bible you think you know God by?

    “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.” John 16:12-15

    Dare to trust Jesus’ words exactly as quoted, please. I am testifying by my own experience, not your religion’s theory, that Jesus is here and has been inn the Holy Spirit for nearly 2,000 years now. Oh, so many are called so few answer. When you do not know what you do not know you should trust the deaf and blind to lead you to the only One who does know. It is right there written in the Bible you seem to worship and yet refuse to come to Him.

    “You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life.” John 5:39-40

  • seashell

    As one of the “others” that come to this blog, I can say that you do not make Christianity desirable. In your comments, I see a worship of Biblical words, a love of judgment and nothing that remotely makes this world a better place. I’m not as concerned with my soul in the ever-after as I am with humanity in the here and now in this world. But what I hear from you is that God is demanding at all times, seemingly concerned only with Himself and how we act towards Him, but not so much with the children you say He created.

    None of the above makes any sense to me. From Ben, Jeff, Bones, Herm and others, there is a sense of love and connected-ness with humanity – and in their cases, a love of God and all that he has created. Slowly, some of this is starting to make sense.

    My two cents.

  • One Truth

    “But, God HAS answered me, and it is not a problem for Him.”

    Its not a problem with Him IF you repent of your sins and turn and follow Him. Otherwise Jeff, You call God a liar and choose to live your life in sin as you please.

    With all due respect Jeff, If you heard a voice tell you that you being in a relationship with another man is ok, I can assure you that was not Gods voice.

    “It is not your place to decide I am not faithful enough. No matter how Imay disagree with you, I would never do the same to you. Our right to question isn’t contingent upon you approving the answer.”

    No Jeff, your are wrong. God has raised up certain people in the world to speak truth to the lost and admonish those who claim to be Christians when they are in the wrong. All with love of course. But with a love that is Bold and does not back down.

    The problem arises when a Christian ( or claiming Christian), Only God knows, is in need of admonishing and they reject it along with Gods Truth. That is were the problems start.

    Jeff, I am not your enemy. I have love and compassion for you. Your sins are no worse than the various sins that I committed against God in my past. If you love God and are a Christian, Then you also need to stop living a life of sin and let Christ heal you and change you into who He wants you to be.

    Read His Word and trust Him Jeff. God loves you.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    That is the opposite stance of the part I quoted. Take the airy praises out of the Bible and one is left with just the deeds to judge the characters by.

  • seashell

    ^Why I’m not a Christian. Makes me want to barf.^

    If Christ were here there is one thing he would not be–a Christian. Mark Twain

  • Christianity: ~2000 years of Christians yelling at Christians to convert to Christianity. :(

  • Ron McPherson

    I suppose I would need an example of what you consider to be “anti-Christian.” I don’t consider ones views of inerrancy to be the sine qua non of saving faith so not sure if that’s where you’re going or not. Jesus didn’t define it that way for the canon of Scripture as we know it today had yet to be compiled. With respect to the Acts passage you cite, professing Christians accuse each other of this. Fundamentalists accuse progressives, progressives accuse fundamentalists. The shame of it all is that both claim to worship the same risen Savior and each charge the other of being excluded from the kingdom.

  • One Truth

    “Don’t forget Abraham was a coward and pimped his wife out”

    And some don’t get it at all…. I suppose its Adams fault that Eve was deceived by the devil and ate of the fruit.

  • One Truth

    “I suppose I would need an example of what you consider to be “anti-Christian.”

    Very well. Slamming Gods Inerrant Word, Which are the words of Christ.

    “I don’t consider ones views of inerrancy to be the sine qua non of saving faith so not sure if that’s where you’re going or not. Jesus didn’t define it that way”

    John 14:23

    1 John 2:20-29

    1 John 5:1-3 & 9

    “With respect to the Acts passage you cite, professing Christians accuse each other of this. Fundamentalists accuse progressives, progressives accuse fundamentalists. The shame of it all is that both claim to worship the same risen Savior and each charge the other of being excluded from the kingdom.”

    You are so missing the point Ron. You are stuck where you are and your fine with it. You have chosen mans words over Gods.

    Good luck.

  • One Truth

    Well…..That settles that.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    Can I have a look in the mirror in front of you- NO, stay where you are… I think I see your god. Also, where do you get that muslims are god-haters? Even the terrorists killed a bunch of people in the twin towers rather than lack love for god.

  • One Truth

    “In your comments, I see a worship of Biblical words”

    Those are the words of God Almighty. Yes….I worship God.

    “But what I hear from you is that God is demanding at all times,
    seemingly concerned only with Himself and how we act towards Him, but not so much with the children you say He created.”

    I know that you do not read the bible, but, have you ever seen the Passion of the Christ?

    You go and watch that document / movie on Gods Love For You, and then you come back and requote your above quote.

    “None of the above makes any sense to me. From Ben, Jeff, Bones, Herm andothers, there is a sense of love and connected-ness with humanity – andin their cases, a love of God and all that he has created. Slowly, someof this is starting to make sense.”

    Not surprising. There are really only two sides.

  • One Truth

    I think its time for your medicine????

  • One Truth

    There are liars in every bunch.

  • You allow for no possibility that a person genuinely believes they are touched by God. There are only Christians and liars. Wow.

  • Jeff Preuss

    “True” Christians…

  • Jeff Preuss

    It’s galling to repeatedly be told (with certainty) I don’t belong to the Kingdom.

  • LadySunami

    And how are we to know you are not one of those liars? Why assume they are liars at all and not simply mistaken? It’s rather arrogant to assume that only you and those who agree with you are being truthful.

    I don’t think you were brought to your interpretation by the Holy Spirit, but that doesn’t mean I think you are a liar. I just think you are mistaken.

  • chopin

    I’ve been thinking abt onetruth & investigator today & have just returned to this chat we are all having. I see there is a lot of interest & a lot has been said since I went to town today. How words fly & twist in the mouthes of those two! How to love such members in good standing of the church of anti-christ?!
    It’s a gritty prospect yet I feel they have done a great service to show us what the language of anti-christ is like while challenging us to be patient tolerant and loving of some fellow Christians with very icky character flaws. I always try to see the big picture and what’s happening right in front of me is community warts and all!

  • Herm

    Before you dig yourself in too much more deeply look up the Fertile Crescent where mankind is first known to have engaged in farming around 11,000 years ago. Prior to that mankind is only known for their hunter gather lifestyle. The Jewish calendar has us, based on the Torah, at 5,775 years since one year before the beginning of the creation. Think truth before you speak down to others.

  • One Truth

    ????

  • chopin

    we are all God’s children. unlike you I do not make an idolatry out of the Bible. in your mouth it’s a doctrine of demons IMO. get behind me Satan!

  • One Truth

    “Why assume they are liars at all and not simply mistaken?”

    My friend, there is no mistake regarding whether or not you have the Holy Spirit dwelling within.

  • One Truth

    God is not a God of confusion.

  • Jeff Preuss

    Just do shut up already. You are not speaking for God. You are speaking for Todd.
    You have no authority to speak to the validity of my faith or my relationship to the Father.

  • Herm

    chopin, your heart is good. As much as we human beings tense up around those who in ignorant righteousness choose to attack our Spirit we should welcome them for strengthening our relationship with He who would die that His enemies might live. It is missed too often but when Jesus is reported to have used the word woe it was His expression for the deepest of grief He felt for those who missed the mark, like the Pharisees and the teachers of the law who justified His crucifixion.

  • Herm

    Google the Fertile Crescent.

  • Bones

    Meh what have the voices in your head told you about homosexuals.

    Let me guess. The same things that you believe.

    Here’s news.

    The voices in your head are not God.

    Adopting the attitude of the Ancient Israelites and saying that is God is just nonsense.

  • Bones

    Some people have to justify their ignorance.

  • Bones

    I think satan would rather people ignore science, knowledge and reason and blindly follow an imperfect book.

  • Bones

    Well says archaeology….and me….

  • Bones

    They bought cakes from them before.

    It was ok to serve homos then.

    Nasty homos buying cakes from a Christian business.

    They need to put signs up like, ‘we don’t serve homos’.

  • Bones

    And it is a secular government because……

    “Is it you don’t believe the Almighty has these powers or that you don’t believe in the Almighty”

    Because God is beyond our contemplation. We can only hypothesise what God is like. The ancients had less of an idea then we do considering their understanding of the cosmos.

  • LadySunami

    Yeah, funny thing. The Bible never actually calls sexual activity between two men a sin. Not even once. It calls it toebah, but that’s not at all the same thing.

    The word toebah roughly translates to abominable, loathsome or detestable, and is applied mainly to activities contrary to tradition, not to sins. Some examples for you:

    They served him by himself, and them by themselves, and the Egyptians who ate with him by themselves, because the Egyptians could not eat with the Hebrews, for that is an abomination to the Egyptians.

    Genesis 43:32

    Egyptians apparently thought of sharing their meals with the Hebrews the same way southern plantation owners thought of sharing their meals with their slaves. The implication is not that it’s “sinful” but that it is “indecent” or “simply not done!”

    When Pharaoh calls you and says, ‘What is your occupation?’ you shall say, ‘Your servants have been keepers of livestock from our youth even until now, both we and our fathers,’ in order that you may dwell in the land of Goshen, for every shepherd is an abomination to the Egyptians.”

    Genesis 46:33-34

    Again, I’m pretty sure this doesn’t mean the Egyptians thought shepherds were sinning by being shepherds, they just thought very poorly of them.

    Then Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron and said, “Go, sacrifice to your God within the land.” But Moses said, “It would not be right to do so, for the offerings we shall sacrifice to the LORD our God are an abomination to the Egyptians. If we sacrifice offerings abominable to the Egyptians before their eyes, will they not stone us? We must go three days’ journey into the wilderness and sacrifice to the LORD our God as he tells us.”

    Exodus 8:25-27

    If the Egyptians considered Hebrew sacrifices morally wrong, I can’t fathom why going out into the wilderness would make it any better. If they were simply adverse to it, eg. it “offended their sensibilities,” then Moses’s suggestion makes perfect sense.

    “You shall not eat any abomination.

    Deuteronomy 14:3

    Yeah, Christains generally don’t follow these dietary rules, despite those animals not on the list being toebah. It’s clear that eating certain foods was a matter of tradition, not of morality. (This instance of toebah is also translated as “unclean” or “ceremonially unclean” in some Bible versions. Strange how that doesn’t carry over to Leviticus.)

    An unjust man is an abomination to the righteous, but one whose way is straight is an abomination to the wicked.

    Proverbs 29:27

    Another clear example of toebah‘s meaning. Wicked men generally don’t call good men “evil” or “sinful,” they simply look down upon them or have an aversion to them.

    Bring no more vain offerings; incense is an abomination to me. New moon and Sabbath and the calling of convocations— I cannot endure iniquity and solemn assembly.

    Isaiah 1:13

    Incense and offerings clearly aren’t sinful, the point was that God was offended by the meaninglessness of said offerings. The Hebrew people were making a show of faith while failing to actually do good (Isaiah 1:16-17). When a husband has been mistreating his wife and offers her flowers as a weak apology, she’s not going to slap him and reject the flowers because flowers are inherently awful, but because she is offended that he thinks they are an appropriate response considering the circumstances.

    Are you starting to understand what toebah actually means? It is something that is contrary to tradition, offensive, disgusting or disdain-worthy. What it’s not is sinful (chet), evil (roa), unjust (avval), or wicked (resha). (Note that evil is also offensive and contrary to Jewish tradition, but that does not mean all things offensive or contrary to Jewish tradition are evil. All oaks are trees, but not all trees are oaks.)
    To look at Leviticus and say, “Well clearly sex between men is a sin!” is to completely fail to understand what the words actually mean. We aren’t ancient Hebrews so following their traditions is not necessary, nor is being offended by someone’s behavior grounds for killing them any more.

  • Bones

    Um a few unrelated words written on a shard of pottery means nothing…..

    The Elephantine papyri make it clear that they had no knowledge of Torah.

    There is no knowledge of Moses or Aaron. Women are allowed to divorce husbands. People worked on the Sabbath. God is known by cultic names such as Eshem-Bethel and Anat-Yahu as well which are Canaanite names.

    What’s clear is that scribes altered the prevailing texts so that Israel’s dependence rested not on kingship but on Torah.

  • Bones

    “There are really only two sides.”

    Yes. Reason and yours,

  • Bones

    ISIS just rang. They don’t think you know God either.

    I hope you’re not too cut up about that. (pardon the pun)

  • Bones

    So let me guess this right. If you lived in Ancient Israel, you would love Jeff so much to kill him because God said.

    Nice.

  • LadySunami

    And you know this how exactly? How did you determine it’s not possible that you are mistaken? What method do you use to determine that everyone else is a liar?

  • LadySunami

    Nah, it’s because when they bought the cakes before it was for someone else’s wedding. It’s okay for homosexuals to spend their money on other people, they just can’t buy things for themselves, since they’re awful sinners and all.

  • seashell

    When the Holy Spirit dwells within you and teaches you, one has nothing to question or worry about. I have peace in Truth.

    Ignorance is bliss.

  • Herm

    The Bible says singularly that the day of rest in the Lord, made for mankind, is on the seventh day, Saturday not Sunday, no exception. The truth is I was also taught not to criticize anyone else’s Sabbath and I don’t. In your inerrant Bible the Sabbath did not change to Sunday. How’s that go with the rest of those liberal ideas? Strange though, I still know Jesus personally, the most liberal of Jews (thanks Ben!).

  • Herm

    To believe Him you have to actually know Him personally, not from just a book. They, God, do not care as much as whether we believe Them but more that we come to believe in Them eternally. I hope you come along.

  • Herm

    Where did you get an invitation by God to be a fruit inspector? Is Pope Francis calling you out on a modern day crusade to clean up the Holy Land? Show me the scripture or the authority that calls you to inspect fruit. I believe you’re spreading manure at best but for certain you’re not in any way spreading the Good News. Oh, I’m sorry you can’t because you won’t listen to hear or read to comprehend so you probably don’t have any Good News to share, especially regarding the Spirit of truth you do not know.

  • Herm

    Mankind is a spectrum of all colors and shades of which not one member has ever or will ever be the same as another. God knows every hair on each head and loves them all. Only the most extreme fundamentalist conservatives believe there are really only two sides. God would be board to death if that were so. really

  • Herm

    Todd, you again are wrong. Sin means missing the mark and you’re way off. The mark on this earth today is the Holy Spirit, the true and only living word of God. The Law and all the Prophets are summed up in everything do to others as you would have others do to you. Your neighbor is the Hispanic gay Muslim who shows you mercy that you must love as yourself to inherit, as already a child of God today, eternal life. Your diatribe above, cloaked in forced love and compassion, is not merciful enough to be Jeff’s neighbor. You’ve missed the mark against Jeff who appears to have met all the qualifications in Luke 10:27 that you have not. Hang in there we’ll try to help you.

  • “God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise.” 1 Corinthians 1:27, KJV

    Seems about right. This matter is about as foolish as it gets. The answer’s right in front of you, but you work so hard not to see it.

  • “The Christians gave Him Sunday, the Jews gave Him Saturday, and the Muslims gave Him Friday.
    *God has a three-day weekend!” – George Carlin*

  • Ron McPherson

    I’m sure brother. Very sorry for anyone in Christ being told such things when the Spirit personally bears witness otherwise. On a few occasions I’ve had ‘both sides’ (hate to frame it that way) call into question the legitimacy of my walk with Jesus. Just yesterday even. Didn’t anger me but it I must confess it was a bit unsettling and perhaps a bit hurtful as well. But the Spirit bears witness that I’m His by His grace and mercy. So I can’t imagine the degree to which you’ve had to endure it. It’s a perfect example of why Jesus told the wheat/tares parable.

  • Bones

    Some people are jealous that they aren’t the only ones. I wish I had a dollar for every time I was condemned for not having the right thinking or following their rules.

    You know in your own heart what’s right and wrong.

    All God requires is that you love yourself, others and God.

    Anything else is unnecessary baggage.

  • Ron McPherson

    “You are so missing the point Ron.”

    Well you sure have that one right friend. I don’t see anything in the verses you cite as to how that speaks to OT inerrancy or furthers your accusations against Ben. I’m growing a little weary from all this so hopefully can find the grace to bow out.

    Peace

  • Bill

    If I understand you correctly, you are saying one cannot be “slow to anger and full of compassion” and just and be consistent. If that is what you are saying – I completely disagree. Many parents could probably cite several examples on how this is the case in a down-to-earth practical everyday sense.

    Thanks for replying though .

  • Femi Emmanuel

    Dear iain,
    Everyone is allowed to talk about God or their god.
    By the Spirit (in my spirit) and the word of Truth I like many other children of God are able to discern the true God and His Spirit.

    It is the Spirit of Truth who indwells me and many others who have embraced the Christ that grants discernment and helps in judging all things.

    I will not be offended if anyone says the God i serve is false. All i will do is to look up to the Spirit of Truth in me to review, guide and make all things plain to me. I cannot do anything for the truth but for the truth and that Truth is Christ Himself.

    What I share is not based on human feelings or ordinary letter of scriptures or people’s opinion but what I am persuaded about in my spirit.

    The Spirit bears witness of who our true Jesus is and the God we serve. If anyone will hear the voice of that Spirit (who is out to convict the world of sin, of righteousness and of judgement) they will know if the God they serve or the Jesus they follow is the true one or not. I am able to do this because that Spirit indwells me.

    Like my Lord, I love all that He loves and by His Spirit will act as He will act though I may not be perfect in doing so at all times but I will not relent.

    Please note that the ways of my Lord Jesus ( led by the Spirit of Truth) was often offensive to men even though all He did was in love. So I also do not desire that I would be accepted at all times or not offend some opinions.

    Forgive me if I write much, my heart is simple and I mean no arm but I am for the Way, the Truth and the Life.

    Peace.

  • Femi Emmanuel

    Dear One Truth, Herm, Investigator, Bones and all,

    I must be much younger in the faith and in human age than you all and many others here but kindly permit me to admonish as follows:

    Can we all learn to increase in speaking the Truth to one another in love so that we may grow up into the full stature of the Christ in all things?

    Can we put away our denominational and sectarian positions, attitudes and spirits and put on Christ instead?

    Can we learn to judge all things without judging to condemnation the people behind the things that we judge not to be of God?

    Can we learn to disagree without being insulting to one another?

    Can we ask of the Lord more and more as we relate to Him in our spirit to enable us learn of Him, know Him and relate to one another by His Spirit rather than based solely on what we have learnt from men, in schools, in organisations, from texts, from the internet?

    I know this is Ben’s forum and I appreciate him for the opportunity. Though I do not agree with Ben in all things but as long as he names the name of the Lord he is my brother in Christ unless his fruits proves completely otherwise to me. So I must respect him and agree or disagree as is becoming of a saints.

    In like manner I will like to relate to all who are in Christ to whom I believe form the core of Ben’s audience in this forum. Let us show at least online love and respect for one another.

    We know in parts and the state of our relationship with the Lord differs but we can all drink of Him and partake of Him as the living bread. In so doing we can minister grace and truth to one another, edifying one another in love.

    To those who are outside of Christ, I will relate as friends and neighbour to be loved in truth and not in hypocrisy. They owe me and us an obligation of love until they come to the knowledge of the Truth and the fellowship of life and light that we have in Christ Jesus.

    Bless you all.

    Peace.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    Projecting again are we? Besides there is no medicine that can help you. Only questioning and introspection of one’s accepted beliefs can help you.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    Take that statement out of the Bible. Now, can you reformulate the statement from the character’s actions before the statement was made and how other characters react to them? “Slow to anger and full of compassion” is not the opinion I get when reading of that character’s prior actions.

  • Bill

    I think I understand you better now.

    From my perspective, it makes sense when you put all of God’s (“that character’s”) words and actions together from old through new testament. I think it’s important to look at prior and subsequent actions, and when I do this it all makes sense to me and seems consistent.

    Thanks again for your comments.

  • But imagine how differently you would perceive God if they had thrown out the Old Testament when they had the chance.

    Then imagine that your perception of God was less based on choices of editing made by others. More directly inspired by God through the vehicle of your own life.

  • “No Jeff, your are wrong. God has raised up certain people in the world to speak truth to the lost and admonish those who claim to be Christians when they are in the wrong. “

    You are referring to yourself!?

    Definitely time to knock down THAT pedestal.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    A god is saying any religious text is true? If so, god, say again, please.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    You might be one of them, but one of the liars assured me that you are not. They say you are part of Liar B Group, which paints a totally different story than what the True Group of Liars is going for.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    REAL True Christians via Slacktivist.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    According them and the Bible scriptures they use- I mean- ACCORDING TO GOD you are sadly deceived.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    What’s a homosexual wedding reception? What is a Nazi wedding reception?

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    66 books by 40 different authors is not circular logic.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    What is this “homosexual lifestyle” and “choices” people keep going on about? I keep looking for what they are talking about, but perhaps they are trying to play a trick on other people.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    Just what is a Nazi baker to do in such a situation?

  • Bones

    Dunno. You must have lots of Nazi weddings over there going to Jewish cake merchants to supply their weddings.

    Like the KKK apparently likes going to black cake makers.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    For bringing special needs people in as a pejorative you truly earn my ire.

  • Bones

    HI Femi.

    Online debates sometimes aren’t the best place for charity especially when some people think you’re of the Devil.

    Having said that I have many fundamentalist friends who I hold dear and some who have disowned me.

    Life goes on.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Actually Ben gets real “cranky” when one calls him out on his hypocrisy.

  • Bones

    So should a gay cake maker boycott a Christian’s wedding?

    Or a white cake maker boycott an interracial or black wedding?

    States like Oregon have anti-discrimination laws when it comes to denying service.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    Well, I take a different view of morality’s relativity. Perhaps it is more accurate to say you are criticizing their inconsistencies within the relativity of morality. Alright, enough from my amateur philosophising.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    I wonder how you would rescue people from this today? I know a group that does it. They do it at the point of a gun. How do you feel about that? Your choice. Rescue a child from sex slavery using the point of a gun. Or try diplomacy while every day more and more are sold into it.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    How about not worshipping anything and just seeing each other as people?

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    Apparently, you have quite a different definition of conservative when the policies and stances being conserved are not all that flattering to you.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    And as LGBT+ Christians know to their very heavy cost.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    Where can I read these?

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Dave L, your so good at this. So clear and easy to understand. Are you a teacher? You are definitely using the gift, God gave you, for him. Keep up the good work. I get tons out of it.

  • Ron McPherson

    Well you may be younger in the faith but your words to me seem full of grace, truth, and wisdom borne from the love of God and others.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    You mean YHWH a young war god represented by bulls and a son of El Elyion the high god of the Phoenician pantheon, who was given the nation (people) of Israel as his inheritance. His wife is Asherah.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    In their mythologies their gods either have no interest in condemning all of humanity or do not rely on such a magic contrivance to start with.

  • Matthew

    I struggle with all this greatly — but as a plane must (if it doesn´t sadly crash first) eventually land somewhere, so must I. Here´s where:

    If God wrote the Bible (even through human authors), I don´t see any reason why it cannot be without error. I mean if God is indeed God, is God not capable of such a literary feat?

    That said, we interpreting humans are flawed and we make many mistakes. We “see through the glass but dimly” Paul says. I have lately taken this to mean that although there is an exact meaning to every biblical text, we readers and interpreters may never (this side of eternity) flesh out exact meaning. As such, we need to come to the Bible, and to each other, with a great sense of humility and as a community attempt to fully understand what we will never fully understand. We must walk together, peacefully, as we attempt to unlock the treasure box that is God´s revelation to us all.

    I´m not certain if that is really a “statement of inerrancy” or not, and I´m not certain if what I have just stated still pins me into the fundamentalist corner, but that´s where I find myself these days.

    Lord have mercy.

  • Herm

    Dear Femi,

    Please understand the setting here. There is not one person who has come into this circle I would not die for that they might live. I believe each and every one, like me, is not perfectly good nor perfectly evil. I believe every soul within who dares to speak is seeking the truth. I do love each and every one without exception.

    There are four scripture readings I sense at this moment are apropos: Matthew 7:21-23, Mark 9:38-41, Matthew 10:11-14, Matthew 10:11-14.

    I am not inspired to enter into another person’s house to tell them how evil they are. I have been welcomed, just as imperfectly as I am, as a guest in Ben’s house. Not all houses claiming a relationship with Jesus the Messiah have welcomed me and I left without telling them how evil they might be. I value Ben’s and his active guests’ tolerance and support as most valuable to me and try very hard to reciprocate. When anyone comes into Ben’s house to tell his guests and him how evil he or his guests are, I in love for the persecuted and the persecutors must stand to wield the sword from my mouth led from within my heart and mind knowing that I am risking to die from an inappropriate swipe of my own sword. If you wish to crucify me for not being in the spirit you know then so be it but understand I have no intention of going like a lamb to slaughter, saying nothing at the slaughter of my own nor do I ever desire to be a martyr without expressing my heart and mind to all I love. Woe be it to those who stand in the way of little children coming to my Lord to know Him personally.

    All of Matthew 18 applies here except in this medium the entire church present is privy to and effected by those who miss the mark in real time.

    If I have not reflected back the judgments as they were invoked in the Spirit of love…

    If I have not acted and responded in accordance with this you wrote …

    “In like manner I will like to relate to all who are in Christ to whom I believe form the core of Ben’s audience in this forum. Let us show at least online love and respect for one another.

    We know in parts and the state of our relationship with the Lord differs but we can all drink of Him and partake of Him as the living bread. In so doing we can minister grace and truth to one another, edifying one another in love.”

    … then I truly ask forgiveness from Ben and all the guests he serves in the name of Christ for I have sinned against you all.

    In Jesus name love Herm

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    I don’t get it. Are gay wedding receptions required to have the YMCA song sung while Nazi wedding receptions require that happy holiday for Hitler song from ‘The Producers’? Is that what these fundies are going on about? Truly, Bones it is a mystery. Then again your a doctor not a detective! ;-)

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    And from mine it does not make sense.

  • Trilemma

    From an unbelievers standpoint, you could say this.
    Belief and faith in the Bible is not a requirement for being a believer.

    …one would also suppose that the readers would attempt to view the Old Testament through the eyes of God, not man.
    What I see Progressive Christians doing is viewing the Old Testament through the eyes of God and ignoring that which is ungodly. What I see you doing is looking at God through the eyes of the Old Testament and having to make excuses for God’s immoral behavior.

    It is also worth noting that unbelievers find it perfectly comfortable here in “Formerly Fundie” as their unbelief is rarely challenged.
    Does your church strive to make unbelievers uncomfortable? Is that how the church should cleanse itself of evil? Tell people to believe or leave. I think the purpose of this site is to question the beliefs of believers not the unbelief of unbelievers.

  • One Truth

    Hello. Your heart means well and your intentions, I am quite certain are good.
    Love, peace, respect, patience…All of these are good qualities. These attributes come from God, in time, with age, to those who seek them with a honest, humble heart.

    You have made an honest statement regarding your youth in your faith and age and I respect that. But Gods wisdom comes with time, to those who ask in faith…James 1:5-8, 1 Kings 3:6-14.

    If you have trusted Jesus Christ as your personal savior, your are well on you way. But please, beware of worldy wisdom, which God calls foolishness 1 Corinthians 1:18-25.

    I am have been walking with the Lord for 30 years and He has taught me much along the way. Am I perfect? Not at all. Do I have feelings and get short ? Sometimes. Not as much as I used to. I try really hard to have patience within these discussions. Too often many out there love to test, poke and prod. Just stir the pot. To them it is all fun and games. Others are sincere with their religious beliefs, yet still deny Gods Truth and do so with an antagonistic attitude.

    I have no personal problem with someone who simply says” I do not believe what you proclaim. If they do not want to hear any more, I will respectfully be on my way.

    I do however, have a big problem with false teachers who are deceiving unsuspecting individuals left and right with false teachings, Just as Jesus Christ did ( Matthew 23:1-36 / John 8 ).
    We need to remember that when someone maligns the truth in public, they are to be rebuked. There are people listening, many who are seeking the Truth and need to know what it is. This is why we are to proclaim the Gospel.

    Notice the command that Jesus gives His disciples upon sending them out in Matthew 10:11-15. Notice verse 14. Jesus did not instruct them to listen to the other individuals opinions or to sit and debate with them or coo them into believing. He said if they do not heed your words, Leave that house or city.

    Also notice in Marks Gospel, Chapter 16:15-16, Jesus did not instruct them to go and have a cordial debate, He said “Go into all the world and preach ( proclaim) the gospel to all creation. As one reads vs 16, you are left with the fact that this is not a debatable issue and there are devastating consequences, which many, including Ben, deny here on these forums.

    Without the understanding of the fact that ( eternal punishment ) actually exists for those who reject Jesus Christ, there is no need for repentance. Without repentance, there is no Salvation. Hence the need for Sound Doctrine. Do you see the grave importance, in regards to reaching out to the lost, and warning them from the False Heresies?

    You said…
    “I know this is Ben’s forum and I appreciate him for the opportunity.Though I do not agree with Ben in all things but as long as he names the
    name of the Lord he is my brother in Christ unless his fruits proves
    completely otherwise to me. So I must respect him and agree or disagree
    as is becoming of a saints.”

    Ben is only here at Patheos as a guest writer, there are many others here who write as well. We are here as guests also, to read and speak.

    I respect your stance to appreciate Ben, I Myself, do not appreciate Ben’s Heresies. Jesus Christ and the Disciples / Apostles did not appreciate false teachers and neither do I. That would be standing with the enemy…..Very dangerous if you are serious about being a follower of Jesus Christ. They will relentlessly chip you away, bit by bit, until you either walk away or cave to their Humanistic ideaology and become lost, just as many on these blogs have become.

    Acts 20:28-31

    1 Timothy 4:1-2 / 6:3-5

    2 Timothy 2:15-16 / 3:16-17 / 4:1-4

    2 Thessalonians 2:7-12 / 3:1-6 / 3:14-15

    You said…
    “We know in parts and the state of our relationship with the Lord differs
    but we can all drink of Him and partake of Him as the living bread”

    Again, This is not true at all. Anyone who does not take the entirety of Gods Word as Literal and Inerrant, and refuses to do so, is blind and ignorant of Gods Truth. Stern warning form the Apostle Paul concerning differing opinions on Gods Word….1 Corinthians 1:10

    We Must All Agree and have No Divisions At All. To be of the Same Mind and Same Spirit. This cannot be stressed enough for the Christian who is following Jesus Christ into His Truth. Satans main goal is to divide, divide, divide. Which ultimately results in the masses being led astray from Gods Truth. You must understand this. It is Spiritual Warfare and nothing less…..Ephesians 6:10-20

    Do you want to know Gods will for you? Do you want to be an Ambassador for Jesus Christ? Study Gods Word and let Him teach you by the Holy Spirit…..John 14:16-17 and 14:26-27.

    Do Not let yourself be lead away by false teachings that contradict the Word of God in any way. Stay close to Christ and pray, He will not let you be mislead if you will trust Him. These are words of wisdom my friend, that you cannot buy. Only God can give this wisdom.

    Over the years, as you grow in your faith and in your relationship with God, if you keep a humble heart, with a true love for others and allow God to teach you, you will come to have Holy Discernment and you will then know who is of God and who is of the Devil just by listening to their replies regarding what you say about Gods Word.
    This does Not mean that some of those who reject Gods Truth will remain lost, but in their current state, you will know where they stand by their acceptance or rejection of Gods Truth.

    Being a loving Christian is not being soft and mushy or tolerant to others feelings, the way the world would define tolerance. Being a loving Christian is to be Bold and Courageous, not backing down from Truth, Yet proclaiming it with the utmost concern for the lost, with a love and compassion that truly wishes to see them come to know their Creator and find Salvation through Jesus Christ.

    The world is always trying to twist these things around though and why would it not….1 John 2:15-17. Be careful

    Study Gods Word and Remain Faithful to Jesus Christ and His Word. God Bless

  • One Truth

    I know about the fertile crescent. What does that have to do with Adam, Eve and the Devil?

  • One Truth

    “I mean- ACCORDING TO GOD you are sadly deceived.”

    Ok, What scripture would you be referring to? That would help.

  • One Truth

    That’s the awesome thing about freewill, you can believe what you like.

  • One Truth

    You are right. Anyone can say anything. So, just go to the Lord in prayer. Easy enough.

  • Herm

    A river watering the garden flowed from Eden; from there it was separated into four headwaters. The name of the first is the Pishon; it winds through the entire land of Havilah, where there is gold. (The gold of that land is good; aromatic resin and onyx are also there.) The name of the second river is the Gihon; it winds through the entire land of Cush. The name of the third river is the Tigris; it runs along the east side of Ashur. And the fourth river is the Euphrates. Genesis 2:10-14

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Liberal Christians tend to skew towards getting along with the pop culture. They don’t want to stand against evil. Hipster friends might laugh at you. In an “ironic” way of course.

  • One Truth

    No Sam, You misunderstand my statement because you neither know God or His ways.

    God is not a God of confusion concerning His true children. This is why the Apostle Paul declares in 1 Corinthians 1:10 to be of the same mind and same spirit and not to divide, but agree on all things concerning Gods Word.

    The worlds confusion comes from rejecting God and being left with a depraved mind.

    Your welcome.

  • One Truth

    Again Herm, have you ever repented of you sins before God and become Born Again by the Holy Spirit?

  • One Truth

    Herm, Because you do not believe Gods Word, you do not believe in Spiritual Warfare. There is Good and Evil. Two sides.

    Its ok Herm, I do not expect you to understand.

  • One Truth

    Only the unsaved/ deceived would think so.

  • One Truth

    Accept Jesus Christ as your personal savior, then you will understand. Until then, you will not.

  • Can you point me to the Scripture that says, “Anyone who does not take the entirety of Gods Word as Literal and Inerrant, and refuses to do so, is blind and ignorant of Gods Truth?”

  • Herm

    You can ask my Lord for a definitive answer.

  • chopin

    hi there pop! IMO you see playground bullies around everything cuz you are unable to process what happened to you when you were a child.

  • One Truth

    “Yeah, funny thing. The Bible never actually calls sexual activity between two men a sin. Not even once.”

    Really?

    Leviticus 18:22

    Leviticus 20:13

    1 Corinthians 6:9-10

    Romans 1:26-28 & Romans 1:32

    Revelations 21:8 & Revelation 22:10-16

  • One Truth

    And you believed him.

  • One Truth

    “Meh what have the voices in your head told you about homosexuals.”

    Answer…..

    Leviticus 18:22

    Leviticus 20:13

    1 Corinthians 6:9-10

    Romans 1:26-28 & Romans 1:32

    Revelations 21:8 & Revelation 22:10-16

  • One Truth

    So, your answer is no? Its nothing to be ashamed of Herm.

  • Herm

    Oh Todd, I do believe God’s word who you do not acknowledge. He tells me that no one person of Man nor of God has had the exact same perspective as another. In a four dimensional world there remains unlimited directions from which to view any given object as an unceasing time is one of those dimensions. In a spiritual world we can be in all places at the same time to view in one another any or all objects of our attention simultaneously from all sides. In both worlds it is the many hearts and minds bound together in mutual and reciprocating love that are able to comprehend and savor the reality of adventure more fully together than just one heart, soul and mind alone. I do not expect you to understand but I truly do love you and sincerely hope the best for your well being.
    Herm

  • Herm

    Don’t you find that an unfounded low blow?

  • Herm

    He knows and to Him I give ALL authority to judge both me and thee. Forgive Todd Father for he knows not what he does or for whom he speaks. amen

  • No, the logic you were using. You said it’s true, so you believe it. That’s placing the cart before the horse! Hence why I asked, would you believe it if you thought it was false, or could you somehow reach the conclusion that it was true and continue not believing it? If neither seems logical, then it’s safe to say that “it’s true, so I believe it” isn’t logical either.
    Frankly, it reminds me a lot of this canard, if you’ll indulge a moment of curiosity:

    Fish live in the sea.
    Sharks live in the sea.
    Therefore sharks are fish.

    A lot of Bible-believing evangelicals will readily state that that they agree with this reasoning because sharks are fish. Would you say that is your position as well?

  • One Truth

    First of all, Lets start here….2 Peter 1:16-21 Inerrant word of God

    2 Timothy 3:7-17 Inerrant word of God

    Titus 2:15 Authority of Truth

    John 8:31-32 & 8:43-45 Children of the devil

    John 9:35-41 Blind

    2 Thessalonians 2:10-15 Rejected the word, became ignorant of Truth

    Matthew 7:26-27 Foolish ones

    Acts 13:44-49 & 20:28-32 Teachers of the lies

    John 20:30-31 The word is Truth

    1 Corinthians 2:12-14 Spiritually appraised = Spiritually Blind

    There is no life apart from Jesus Christ and the Truth of His Word.

  • And then Paul goes on to say that a certain degree of disagreement is absolutely acceptable in Romans 14, that one who holds some things unacceptable is to be embraced as a brother of weaker faith.

    The faith that you have, keep between yourself and God; happy is he who has no reason to judge himself for what he approves. But he who has doubts is condemned, if he eats, because he does not act from faith; for whatever does not proceed from faith is sin.

    I stand as one with absolute certainty in a few number of things. Will you accuse me of sin for acting upon my faith? Then I won’t invite you to my wedding, and thus you need not be injured by it. We have an accord?

    Whether ignorant or bursting with knowledge, we all walk the same road and attain the same destination. It’s what comes afterward that hinges rather heavily on the degree to which one loved the world.

  • One Truth

    “And then Paul goes on to say that a certain degree of disagreement is
    absolutely acceptable in Romans 14, that one who holds some things
    unacceptable is to be embraced as a brother of weaker faith.”

    Sam, Paul is NOT speaking about The Word of God, He is speaking about the eating of certain foods. Come on Sam….Read the words.

  • Femi Emmanuel

    Dear Bones,
    Thanks for your response.
    In all, I do hope we can continue to suffer long with one another and seek that the will of our Father in heaven be done in the lives of all His children and those that He will yet add to His flock.

    If we are of God we need not mind what people think we are or what they call us. We should respond with the nature, the truth and the power of Christ in us.

    In due course, the children of God and the children of the evil one will be made manifest by His light.

    Peace be unto all that love the Lord out of a pure heart.

  • LadySunami

    Reading comprehension is a handy skill. I literally just went over the word used in Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13.
    As for the other verses you mention, I will go over each of them separately for you so as not to plague disqus with posts that are too long.

  • Femi Emmanuel

    Dear Ron,

    Thanks for your words of encouragement. I desire that we may all walk in His light, love, grace and in truth as the Lord enables us which I believe should be the desire of all His saints in the light.

    Peace.

  • LadySunami

    1 Corinthians 6:9-11 doesn’t actually mention homosexuality. That is a mistranslation. Neither malakoi (μαλακοὶ) nor arsenokoitai (ἀρσενοκοῖται) mean homosexual, and they were not translated as such until 1966.

    Arsenokoites Translations Over Time:

    “thei that don leccherie with men”
    Wyclif: 1380

    “abusars of them selves with the mankynde”
    Tyndale: 1534
    Coverdale: 1535
    Cranmer: 1539
    Geneva Bible: 1557
    KJV: 1611
    ASV: 1901

    “the liers vvith mankinde”
    Douai-Rheims: 1582

    “sexual perverts”
    RSV: 1946
    REB: 1992

    “sodomite”
    OB: 1966
    NAB: 1970
    NRSV: 198

    “homosexual perverts”
    TEV: 1966
    NEB: 1970

    “homosexual offenders”
    NIV: 1973

    Note how the translations to various forms of homosexual are the most recent of translations.

    Malakos Translations Over Time:

    “lechouris ayens kynde”
    Wyclife: 1380

    “weaklings”
    Tyndale: 1534
    Coverdale: 1535
    Cranmer 1539

    “wantons”
    Geneva Bible: 1557

    “effeminate”
    Douai-Rheims: 1582
    KJV: 1611
    ASV: 1901

    “sexual perverts”
    RSV: 1946
    REB: 1992

    “homosexual perverts”
    TEV: 1966
    NEB: 1970

    “catamite”
    JB: 1966

    “sodomite”
    NAB: 1970

    “male prostitute”
    NIV: 1973
    NRSV: 1989

    Again, until 1966 the word was never translated as homosexual.

    —–

    For malakoi, the meaning of the word is well established, and said meaning is not “homosexual.” Malakos refers to softness, delicacy, gentleness, etc. or when describing a human being, “effeminate” traits such as laziness, decadence and cowardice (some historic sexism for you). This word was often used to describe men who wasted their time pursuing sexual encounters regardless of what sex their prospective partners were.

    —–

    For arsenokoitai, the word has very few uses in Greek literature, so it’s meaning is rather unclear. The only reasons I’ve seen given for translating it as homosexual is because of its root words: “arrén” (730: man) and “koité” (2845: a bed, marriage bed). That’s a pretty weak argument for translating it as homosexual.

    What we do know about the word from its limited use is that it refers to some form of exploitation. Sibylline Oracle 2.70-77 is believed to have the first ever appearance of the word, and it is included in a list of exploitative crimes. Here is an English translation of the section from J. J. Collins:

    (Never accept in your hand a gift which derives from unjust deeds.)
    Do not steal seeds. Whoever takes from himself is accursed (to generations of generations, to the scattering of life.
    Do not arsenokoitein, do not betray information, do not murder.)
    Give one who has labored his wage. Do not oppress a poor man.
    Take heed of your speech. Keep a secret matter in your heart.
    (Make provision for orphans and widows and those in need.)
    Do not be willing to act unjustly, and therefore do not give leave to one who is acting unjustly.

    The word is also used in a list of exploitative sins in the Acts of John, here translated by Wilhelm Schneemelcher:

    And let the murderer know that the punishment he has earned awaits him in double measured after he leaves this (world). So also the poisoner, sorcerer, robber, swindler, and arsenokoites.

    If arsenokoitai refers to same-sex relations at all, it is clearly referring to exploitative ones. Considering who Paul was writing to and what practices were common at the time, the word likely refers to 1) officials who abused their power to have sex with the wives of their underlings, 2) owners who had sex with their male slaves, or 3) masters who sexually abused their young apprentices.

  • At the time he was writing, the Word of God was the very scripture which condemned people to death for working on the Shabbat. There were doubtless people who knew the burgeoning faith that would become Christianity did not condemn working on the Shabbat or the consumption of unclean foods or indeed respect many of the 76 prohibitions in Leviticus, but feared for their relationship with God if they allowed themselves to believe such dangerous ideas. Paul wrote these words as advice and assurance.

    Do you also perceive Peter’s vision in Acts 10 to be about food and nothing else? :(

  • Well, let’s see.

    First of all, every last one of these citations were written before we had our Bible as we know it, so none of them are talking about the Bible as a finished product. Second, not a single one said we have to interpret the Bible literally. Third, how do we know these Scriptures you are citing as proof of inerrancy aren’t mistaken? How can you base a claim of inerrancy on the source that we are actually trying to determine as inerrant? If I told you I was inerrant, would you believe me? Why not? Those are my overall observations. Onto the passages!

    2 Peter 1:16-21 does not say anything about God’s word being inerrant; he is establishing the validity of his own prophecy by putting it the same tradition as OT prophecies. Nowhere does he say prophecies are never wrong, nor does he say they are always literally fulfilled, especially since many OT prophecies were NOT literally fulfilled. For instance, Edom is not still on fire, nor did flames destroy both the northern and southern kingdoms, nor is the city of Tyre underwater.

    2 Timothy 3:7-17 says nothing about literalism, nor does it say the Bible is inerrant. It says all Scripture (known to Paul at the time) was inspired by God and useful for all kinds of important things in the life of the church. It does not say no Scripture has errors.

    Titus 2:15 says nothing about Scripture at all, but rather an exhortation to Titus to preach the gospel and rebuke where necessary.

    The John 8 passages also say nothing about Scripture, but rather that, if Jesus’ audiences were faithful Jews, they would have Abraham’s faith and act accordingly.

    The John 9 passages do not mention Scripture. Jesus does ask if the audience believes in the Son of Man.

    The 2 Thessalonians passage does not say the Romans rejected “the word,” it says they did not love the truth. No mention of Scripture anywhere.

    The Matthew 7 parable does not mention Scripture, but rather the words Jesus is bringing to the listeners.

    The Acts 13 passage also does not mention Scripture, but rather the word the disciples were preaching to Israel. The Bible didn’t even exist when this happened, and neither the Gospels nor any of Paul’s letters had been written when the events in Acts 13 were described to have happened. Similarly in Acts 20. There is no mention of Scripture there.

    John 20:30-31 is actually about the written book of John! So congratulations for that, but John does not say his book is free of mistakes, nor does he say that it should be read literally. Which is good, because Jesus says he is a vine in John 15, which seems unlikely to be literal.

    1 Corinthians 2:12-14 does not mention Scripture at all, but rather the indwelling of the Spirit.

    So, out of all your citations, the vast majority of them don’t even MENTION Scriptures, and the ones that do don’t say the Scriptures are inerrant or literal.

    Now, you made a very dogmatic comment about having to believe the Scriptures are inerrant and literal, or else you are “blind to God’s truth,” which would include not only centuries of Christian Jews but the vast majority of early church fathers.

    Do you have any actual substantiation for that statement, or would you care to modify it?

  • The circumcision thing might have come up once or twice. I vaguely remember that being an issue about defining true faith.

  • One Truth

    Well there it is….Your blind and cannot see Truth. This is all to common here on these blogs. Have a good day Phil

  • One Truth

    No That’s about not discriminating against the Gentiles. Christ is now bringing them into the Fold.

  • Femi Emmanuel

    Dear Herm,

    Thank you very much for your time and response.

    I had to pore with my heart over the scriptures you stated again with my spirit and heart before the Lord to discern what the Lord is saying.

    I believe and agree the will of our Father in heaven is uppermost. It is not our will, not our zeal, not our own righteousness; not our own image; not our acceptance by the world.

    I agree we must avoid offending the young ones in Christ who believe in the Lord.
    However, to those who are not yet in Him we may be causing a lot of offence because we love the Lord, stand upon His ground of truth and are His witnesses in this world that is opposed to Him. They also may be causing a lot of offence to us which we should manage in order to bring them unto Him but we cannot runaway from proclaiming the truth which sometimes is bitter or hard to receive even by believers.

    I commend your humility and pray for more grace for you and all of us. I come across so much pride and hardness on this forum which hurts my spirit and may be having same effect on many. I pray we may be purged of this poison of the evil one.

    The propensity to repent is a mark of all that are open unto the Lord and His Spirit.

    May grace and truth be multiplied unto you as you lay down your life for the brethren. I desire same for myself and all.

    Peace.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    You, just don’t get it. Some of the most fun I ever had was with bullies on the playground. Its just that Ben is supposed to be a serious adult, yet his supporters act like children on the playground. You should change your name to Wagner.

  • LadySunami

    For Romans 1 you seem to have confused the punishment for the crime.

    For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

    Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

    Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

    Romans 1: 21-27

    Their error was “exchang[ing] the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles” and the penalty was “God [giving] them over to shameful lusts.” That is literally what the text says.

    Paul associates these two things with one another in the first place because of a common pagan practice at the time known as temple prostitution. Male worshipers would engage in “unnatural” (aka. anal) sex with both male and female temple prostitutes during fertility rituals. (Only male worshipers as females not associated with the temple would not be involved.) As a Jewish man who looked down on non-procreative sex (which is toebah), Paul saw these fertility rituals as the pagans making fools of themselves. Reject God and you will end up making a fool of yourself.

    Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

    Romans 1: 28-32

    The things deserving of death are those practices listed immediately before that sentence: envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice, gossip, slander, God-hating, insolence, arrogance, boastfulness and disobedience to parents. (You’ll note that many items on this list are repeats of 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, which as I pointed out does not actually mention homosexuality.)

    To exclude all context and pick out a select few verses so that you can pretend this is all about homosexuality is more then a bit dishonest.

  • chopin

    you are high on adrenaline fight or flight having fun with us. that is because you still see yourself as a victim IMO. there would be no you if you didn’t see yourself that way. what has to change for you pop is everything! everything will change for you because Jesus is Lord. what is Wagner?

  • One Truth

    Believe what you will.

  • One Truth

    Your a LIAR and a Molester of Gods Holy Word. You Will Give Account….

  • Herm

    pop thinks he is clever and humorous because he connected your avatar as Frederic Chopin, a Polish composer, to the only other composer he could name who was a German composer named Richard Wagner. It is telling.

  • So, because I’m trying to hold you to what the Bible actually says, I’m blind and can’t see the truth. But you, who are making the Bible say a bunch of stuff it doesn’t, is right on track. I know which one of us I’d rather be when we give an accounting for our teaching.

  • LadySunami

    But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.”

    Revelations 21:8

    Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and the sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.

    Revelation 22:15

    The word used in both of these, pornois (often translated as whoremongers) refers to people who have sex with prostitutes. This has nothing to do with vague notions of “sexual immorality” but everything to do with exploiting others.

  • LadySunami

    Since when does pointing out the meaning of words constitute lying? Do you have any evidence that arsenokoitai refers to male-male sex in general or are you just angry I dared to point out the error?

    If there are any liars they are those that intentionally mistranslate words so that they can manufacture Biblical support for their own prejudices.

  • Herm

    Are you being judgmental? I try to be as discerning as I can to comprehend what is actually being said. I certainly was not condemning pop to any fate according to my beliefs.

  • LadySunami

    Can you offer any worthwhile response, or is that it?
    Will you keep citing these verses as evidence that homosexuality is a sin, even though that interpretation does not match what is actually said?

  • LadySunami

    That’s not actually an explanation. What of those who have accepted Jesus as their savior but still believe you to be wrong? Why should I assume they are the liars and not you?

    Considering your ungracious reaction to being informed of a mistranslation you’re certainly not acting much like someone guided by the Holy Spirit.

  • LadySunami

    Your link:

    Arsenokoitai is a compound word: arseno is the word for “a male,” and koitai is the word for “mat” or “bed.” Put the two halves together, and the word means “a male bed”—that is, a person who makes use of a “male-only bed” or a “bed for males.” And, truthfully, that’s all the information we need to understand the intent of 1 Corinthians 6:9.

    From my comment:

    The only reasons I’ve seen given for translating it as homosexual is because of its root words: “arrén” (730: man) and “koité” (2845: a bed, marriage bed). That’s a pretty weak argument for translating it as homosexual.

    Like I said, if the only reason anyone can come up with for translating it as homosexual is that it combines the words “man” and “bed” that’s pretty weak. Compound words do not simply mean the sum of their parts.

    Consider the word “rainbow.” It is a combination of the words “rain” and “bow” but this does not mean it refers to all combinations of these two words. “Rain” is fairly specific, but “bow” can refer to several things including “something bent into a simple curve,” “a metal ring or loop forming a handle,” “a knot formed by doubling a ribbon or string into two or more loops,” or “a wooden rod with horsehairs stretched from end to end used in playing an instrument of the viol or violin family.”

    If we just looked at the word as a combination of its parts, rainbow could mean anything from “rain clouds forming a curve in the sky,” “the metal loops attached to rain tarps,” “a traditional knot meant to summon rain,” to “a wooden rod used to play instruments that was manufactured with the aid of rainwater.” Even if we limit “bow” to its “something bent into a simple curve” meaning, there are still multiple possibilities, like “an incoming cloud front that forms a curve,” “the curved metal portions of an umbrella,” “a tree branch bent due to heavy rain,” and so on.

    “Rainbow” is a perfectly good word for that which it describes, it is a bent shape that appears in the sky after rain, but the fact remains that the word on its own with no context would be difficult to translate. The exact same thing is true of arsenokoitai.

    What we know about arsenokoitai is that its root words mean “man” and “bed” and that it has only ever been listed amongst exploitative sins. That is it. It could mean absolutely anything related to exploitation and a man’s bed. The “likely meanings” that I and others have come up with are 1) exploiting a man over which you have power by sleeping with his wife, thereby tarnishing his marriage bed (King David is guilty of this option), 2) a man exploiting his male slaves by sleeping with them (a sadly very common Roman practice), or 3) a master exploiting his younger apprentice by sleeping with him (again, a sadly very common Roman practice). I imagine there are other options involving exploiting men’s beds as well.

    Assuming the word arsenokoitai refers to homosexuality in general is like assuming rainbow refers to all rain related bent things. It makes no sense because that is not how words actually work.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    This answers your question about that irrational dogma.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=absW29h8KGA

  • Bones

    Paul probably didnt like gay sex like most in his culture. But then he didnt think much of straight sex or marriage. Hey he was a Pharisee. He also didnt like men with long hair.

    Why is Pauls opinion so important? Have we replaced one law for another.

  • LadySunami

    For Biblical literalists whatever Paul says about who gets what afterlife must be true. Expressions of distate not related to who is or isn’t hell-bound (like his distate for straight marriage) people are apparently free to ignore. (That’s how you read things literally don’t ya know?)

    Unfortunately for them, Paul only thinks anal sex is foolish, not that it sends people to hell, so by their own metric we shouldn’t care what he says on the subject. That doesn’t let them hate on the gays though, so they pretend otherwise.

  • Bones

    He’s making up his own now.

  • Bones

    Yes but that doesn’t fit his ideology. He hates gays and has to find the verses to back that up.
    You’re making it difficult for him hence his aggressive ad homs.

  • Bones

    Yawn. I don’t like it therefore it’s Satan.
    Let us know when you enter the 21st century.

  • Bones

    lol

  • Bones

    And the Pope and the Catholic Church say they are infallible therefore they must be.
    It’s the same circular logic.

  • Bones

    Possibly. It’s interesting that these types hate moral relativism yet commit it themselves.
    Eg if God commanded someone to be gay that would be good but gay is bad.

  • One Truth

    Deny God all you want Phil, To Your Peril. Goodbye.

  • One Truth

    Goodbye Bones.

  • One Truth

    Goodbye.

  • One Truth

    That’s it, your done, Goodbye

  • LadySunami

    How do you know the Holy Spirit is not trying to reach you through Phil’s words? His points are all valid ones. Perhaps the Holy Spirit is seeking to correct you and prevent you from spreading false teachings but you keep ignoring its pleas. It certainly seems you are allowing your pride to blind you as you refuse to admit even the possibility of error on your behalf.

  • LadySunami

    Is this generally how you react when people point out you might have made an error? You storm out of the room and refuse to discuss the matter any more?

  • LadySunami

    Farewell. May you actually investigate the claims you make in the future rather then assuming they are true. Otherwise you are no different from the followers of Islam you so despise.

  • Bones

    Where you goin?

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Now, Hermy?!? I thought I was gaining respect for you. I really just wanted to read you interacting with Dave L. Investigator, and the other adults. Why are you back on the playground with us kids. You like it huh? Play is fun. Maybe your just not as grown up as you like to think. Its more like ol vagner was a bloody nazi. Who hated Gods chosen people. Just like ol chopin. Chuckles Bra!

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    Thankfully, your local Catholic radio station providing ‘Called to Communion’ is here to argue with you about how enlightened they now are for realizing the Catholic Church was the right way all along, and the Protestants mostly made up everything they every disagreed with Jesus, son of the Queen of Heaven and the Angels and the Most High in all the Universe, about. There will be guilting.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I worked for both America Online and Comcast. In both situations the supervisors saw to it that we shut down, and if someone had left earlier in the evening and the computer was still on, the supervisors shut down.

  • Margot Fernandez

    Well, full disclosure here, I am pretty much an old lady. But I must repeat that I am far from an evangelical un-Christian. I am an Episcopalian and I have studied the faith all my adult life.

  • Margot Fernandez

    No thanks, I would deal with you but I have had enough of your attitude.

  • Margot Fernandez

    There was an important change from adult baptism to infant baptism, and in Jesus’ time there was no concept of the Trinity because there was no concept that Jesus was other than a human being. The influence of Neo-Platonic philosophy was a pernicious influence on the early Church, overwhelming the early concepts with obsession over virginity, Dualism, and the rejection of Jesus’ humanity. These are important things to me. My beliefs are very much Pauline and of the Church that emerged from Judaism.

  • Jeff Preuss

    At tech-based firms, I can understand that being a maintained priority. As we work in a creative field, there are those of us who…completely ignore what our IT department recommends because it just “doesn’t compute.”

  • One Truth

    Well unfortunately, if you cant use the word of God to back your claim…..Its not ACCORDING TO GOD. Goodbye Giauz

  • Margot Fernandez

    You have to look up all the books of the New Testament to know the most about how they were written and when they were added to the Canon of Scripture. I don’t have all that information but generally the various books of the New Testament were added as they were discovered and collected. For Paul’s letters, specifically, it is now believed by the scholarly community that he did NOT write Colossians, Ephesians, 2 Thessalonians, 1 and 2 Timothy, Titus and Hebrews. The person with the most information about this is Bishop John Shelby Spong, but there is also a very good book called Don’t Know Much About…The Bible that you can look at.

  • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz

    Oh, I’m just referring you to their claims. I’ve heard it all. I buy into joining the Catholics less than you.

  • Margot Fernandez

    You don’t understand. EVERYONE worships a god of their own creation, and everyone believes just what they want to believe. If you are consumed with anger, you will find a church that offers you sanctioned victims. If you are fearful, you will find a church that promises you certainty. And so on.
    Judaism, Christianity and Islam are all called revealed religions because their founding figures had titanic experiences that their whole culture attributed to divine intervention and revelation. But it is now thousands of years later. We have learned objective facts that impinge upon the interpretations of stories like the Flood.
    Furthermore, none of these three faiths has set Scripture aside and tried to postulate the nature of God. Just what kind of God will you consent to worship? Here is my still-evolving statement about the nature of God:
    1. God never does anything but good.
    2. God never interferes with human freedom.
    3. God does not incur “collateral damage” or unforeseen consequences.
    4. God does not interfere with the normal processes of nature.
    5. God does not have to correct his work, i. e., create the human race and then go back and destroy it.
    6. God’s nature is pure, just, unconditional love.

  • I suspect if they start trying to read Spong’s twelve points, they’ll go into an apoplectic fit and keel over. Wait, is that the idea?

  • LadySunami

    I notice you don’t actually have a counter argument and so are attempting personal attacks…

    I’ve really got to wonder how you didn’t notice the seed thing.

    “If a man has an emission of semen, he shall bathe his whole body in water and be unclean until the evening. And every garment and every skin on which the semen comes shall be washed with water and be unclean until the evening. If a man lies with a woman and has an emission of semen, both of them shall bathe themselves in water and be unclean until the evening.

    Leviticus 15:16-18

    “If any man among you becomes unclean because of a nocturnal emission, then he shall go outside the camp. He shall not come inside the camp, but when evening comes, he shall bathe himself in water, and as the sun sets, he may come inside the camp.

    Deuteronomy 23:10-11

    Semen anywhere outside the vagina makes whatever it touches unclean! (At least I’m assuming women aren’t to clean out their vaginas after intercourse, only the rest of themselves.) My statement regarding Jewish law is correct.

    You clearly didn’t read my post regarding Romans 1.

    For Romans 1 you seem to have confused the punishment for the crime.

    For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

    Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

    Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

    Romans 1: 21-27

    Their error was “exchang[ing] the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles” and the penalty was “God [giving] them over to shameful lusts.” That is literally what the text says.

    Paul associates these two things with one another in the first place because of a common pagan practice at the time known as temple prostitution. Male worshipers would engage in “unnatural” (aka. anal) sex with both male and female temple prostitutes during fertility rituals. (Only male worshipers as females not associated with the temple would not be involved.) As a Jewish man who looked down on non-procreative sex (which is toebah), Paul saw these fertility rituals as the pagans making fools of themselves. Reject God and you will end up making a fool of yourself.

    Yeah, your link is wrong. There are no such divisions of Jewish law. The whole idea of civil, ceremonial, and moral divisions are a more recent invention that would be completely foreign to early Christians. Prior to Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) there were no references to any such division.

    Even if we do decide to make such a division, there is no reason for male-male sex to be classified under moral law. It is toebah, not chet (sinful), roa (evil), avval (unjust), or resha (wicked). Things that are toebah would be classified along side thing that are tame (unclean), niddah (impure) or gaal (defiled).

  • Bones

    Given that the Ancient Israelites or early Christians never knew how babies were made, what is your point?

    They thought the seed of a man’s ejacutlation contained the egg which went into the woman who incubated it.

    We’ve only known about conception for the past 300 years.

    Heaven knows what they thought a woman’s bleeding was. Well something unclean in the Old Testament.

  • LadySunami

    Apparently he hasn’t read these verses:

    “If a man has an emission of semen, he shall bathe his whole body in water and be unclean until the evening. And every garment and every skin on which the semen comes shall be washed with water and be unclean until the evening. If a man lies with a woman and has an emission of semen, both of them shall bathe themselves in water and be unclean until the evening.

    Leviticus 15:16-18

    “If any man among you becomes unclean because of a nocturnal emission, then he shall go outside the camp. He shall not come inside the camp, but when evening comes, he shall bathe himself in water, and as the sun sets, he may come inside the camp.

    Deuteronomy 23:10-11

    I suppose it would be more correct for the post he found to say, “Jewish law objected strongly to men ‘spilling their seed’ in any opening anywhere other then the vagina.” Oh well. I don’t always word things the best.

  • LadySunami

    You know, it just occurred to me that maybe you quoted that post to prove I must be lying when I say “the Bible doesn’t call male-male sex a sin” since I earlier indicated that “Jewish law objected strongly to men “spilling their seed” in any opening other then the vagina. ”
    The statement you quote doesn’t have anything to do with sin though. Jewish law also objected strongly to menstrual blood touching anything, but that doesn’t mean menstruation was considered a sin. Jewish law objected to a lot of things that weren’t considered to be sins.

  • Femi Emmanuel

    You must forgive me for I do not have the grace for debating but I will try as the Lord grants me grace to respond as you have taken so much time and care to reply my admonition.

    [I have trusted the Lord Christ Jesus only as my saviour and received of His Spirit indwelling and upon me neither do I count any wisdom superior to that which the Father has demonstrated in the Son through which our salvation was procured. I count the wisdom and the mindset of this word to be vain and its worst form to be devilish. James.James 3:13-18. ”The Wisdom from above is pure, peaceable, gentle, easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.”]

    [In my sojourn since I came to the Lord over 20 years ago, I have also seen a little about the state of my own heart and that of men’s heart and learning that the heart indeed could be deceitful and quite wicked. I have also seen that one could easily become a mouthpiece or agent of the devil ignorantly or deliberately as a wolf in sheep’s clothing so I always pray the Spirit of Truth will help me to discern the true state of things as God sees them. I am also learning to ignore and not respond in all cases to the prodding and poking of men so that the enemy do not wear me out or disturb my inner peace in the spirit through such antics.]

    [You wrote ”I do however, have a big problem with false teachers who are deceiving unsuspecting individuals left and right with false teachings, Just as Jesus Christ did ( Matthew 23:1-36 / John 8 ). ”

    I see this as the Lord warning us to beware and be delivered from the hypocrisy and iniquity of religion as demonstrated by the religious order and scholars of Christ’s day which is also applicable to us here and now. I sincerely pray for myself and all that we may take heed and walk in His grace and truth.]

    [Sir, I truly agree that we must speak the truth and condemn the lies of the evil one if we are able to discern them by the Spirit of Truth in us borne witness to by the living word. The principal ministry of the evil one (who is our real enemy) in these last days is lying, falsehood and seduction of the hearts of men and the saints of God away from God’s truth. This was also his strategy at the beginning that led to the fall of the first Adam.]

    [I believe there is a difference in the manner of preaching to those who are unsaved and speaking or ministering to those with whom we are children in the Father’s household through our common salvation in Christ Jesus. We must be gentle with one another, here a little, there a little. We must boldly and honestly proclaim the truth in love and leave the outworking in men to the Spirit of Truth (who convicts of sin, of righteousness and of judgement) and the living word of God (which is quick and able to discern and judge the intents of men’s heart) otherwise we may be venturing into witchcraft and trying to do God’s work for Him or force God’s will upon men. Anyone who is of the Truth will hear what the Spirit is saying, obey the demand of the Spirit and bring forth the required fruit.]

    [I believe the Lord Himself warned severally about the danger of everlasting or eternal suffering. Eternal death is the opposite of eternal life which is a separation from the life and presence of God. We must shout and warn people of this consequence but first and foremost we must proclaim the good news of the Kingdom (which now is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost for the children of the kingdom).

    We must declare the Christ as the exalted King, the one who was, who is and who is to come. We must proclaim His salvation borne out of His love for humanity, declare His glory and His power. The gospel of the kingdom must be based on love, true compassion and the demonstration of the Holy Ghost and power at the forefront and warning against rejecting the King who is to come in the glory and power of His kingdom to rule and to reign with a rod of iron.]

    I went over the scriptures you gave again before the Lord (Acts 20:28-31, 1 Timothy 4:1-2 / 6:3-5, 2 Timothy 2:15-16 / 3:16-17 / 4:1-4, 2 Thessalonians 2:7-12 / 3:1-6 / 3:14-15) and I declare that if anyone writes against what I judge to be against the spirit and the mind of the Lord revealed in the word, I will definitely rise up to proclaim the truth. By His unction and grace in us we are able to discern the spirits speaking through men or behind words and actions. See how the Lord rebuked the working of satan and the flesh even in our beloved apostle Peter and how the Lord also rebuked satan directly. Math 16:23, Luke 4:8. The problem is that we do not even know at times that the enemy has employed our soul and the mind of the flesh to do his bidding. May the Lord deliver us from this susceptibility to the evil one.

    Even if our brethren err in the spirit or in word, we must be careful not to take them as the enemy even though we may not have fellowship with them for their stand or position regarding the word. We must still continue to intercede for such that they may see the truth and recover themselves from the deception of the evil one. If we are wrong we must also humbly admit and confess our fault before the Lord and His people to be restored.]

    [Sir, You wrote ”Again, This is not true at all. Anyone who does not take the entirety of Gods Word as Literal and Inerrant, and refuses to do so, is blind and ignorant of Gods Truth. Stern warning form the Apostle Paul concerning differing opinions on Gods Word….1 Corinthians 1:10”.

    I do not believe that every letter of the the written word of God is always to be taken literarily. Does it mean all the visions with symbols and imagery in the revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ to the beloved apostle John are to be taken literarily? We should rather take literarily the revealed Word of God spoken directly to our hearts by the Holy Spirit and confirmed by the written word. The Holy Spirit who is now our teacher is able to expound and interprete the holy scriptures to us as well as declare what He has received freshly from the throne of grace.

    I also do not always accept a man’s revelation even if He claims it to be from the Holy Spirit unless it is in line with the mind of the Spirit as revealed with confirmations in the written word/scriptures and borne witness to by the Holy Spirit in me.]

    [Sir, I repeat we are not all on the same level of knowledge of God, nor the appropriation of God’s grace, nor the exercise of our spirit in the Holy Spirit. No one knows everything nor is able to do everything to bring forth the bride of Christ. The church is a many-membered body with different measures of grace to each member to build up the body of Christ in love. 1 Cor 1-13, Eph 4:1-17.]

    [I also believe in warring in the spirit against the enemy of the Church and the enemy of our souls who is the prince of the power of the air, the ruler of this present world and order of things.]

    [I believe in the unity of the faith which is the Lord’s purpose that we may be of one mind and one spirit with Him and in Him. The Lord in actively working this out from my own experience in our local assemblies on this side made easy because we have decided we will neither be fundamentals nor progressives nor any such names by which believers are divided. We want to be simply chrisitians, allowing Christ to reveal Himself through us in word and in deed by the working of the Holy Spirit.]

    [Sir, I submit and humble myself before the Lord as one who is completely ignorant and foolish without His Spirit’s leading and guidance. I have practically suffered so much in my flesh in the past for not realizing this and till now I am still learning this lesson on my skin. I also stand for the defend of the gospel and ready to lay down my life for the Lord and His church as He empowers me for I put no confidence in my own flesh.]

    [We must never give the enemy an inch in us nor among us but I ask that the same love we want the unsaved to see must be demonstrated first of all within the household of faith and to all those that nameth the name of the Lord. If anyone becomes an apostate it shall be clearly manifest to the true sons and daughters of God. From such we are enjoined to have no fellowship.

    We should should know it is easier to judge and call down fire on men than to love them with patience to bring them to the Lord.

    May remain on the Lord’s side in redeeming and saving that which is lost.]

    More grace, truth and peace be multipled unto you and all.

  • LadySunami

    Guest was deleted on me, so I guess my response goes here. (Sorry Ben, but I think it’s worthwhile information.)

    Guest’s Post:

    “it just occurred to me that maybe you quoted that post to prove I must be lying when I say “the Bible doesn’t call male-male sex a sin” since I earlier indicated that “Jewish law objected strongly to men “spilling their seed” in any opening other then the vagina. ”

    I am not saying that you are lying (but you are deceiving yourself and others) but you were making the point that lesbian sex was ok and that men having sex with men was not according to the bible and you said this in “10 situations where Christian bakers should refuse to bake wedding cakes”. This is what you said:

    “I never said Leviticus was ambiguous. It’s only refering to penetrative male-male sex though. No mention of lesbianism or of other forms of male-male affection.
    And did you completely miss my list of translations over time? Can you honestly say that wasn’t an attempt to change the words of the Bible to conform to what the translators thought it should say?
    The whole idea that anal sex is immoral/sinful is stupid, but in the end it is actually something the Old Testament really is clear on. I said so myself! That being said, I don’t appreciate people who intentionally warp other verses just so they have an excuse to shame lesbian couples, who are never even referenced in the Bible, or gay-male couples, who for all they know don’t engage in anal sex and never have.”

    That is why I gave you the quote:

    “That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved.”

    BTW – this is not a personal attack. If you leave your account open, then people have a right to read it and keep you to your words. Also, I’m a woman not a man.
    Edited to add: Furthermore, in the context of the above bible quote it is likely that in other parts of the bible that Arsenokoitai is referring to homosexuality since the bible has already referred to homosexuality being wrong in the Old Testament – the only difference is that people are no longer condemned to death for it.
    Sorry I edited this again.

    My Reply:

    Ah, gotcha. That must have been back before I started looking into the original Hebrew.
    There was a fellow I was chatting with, not too terribly long ago, who was very insistent upon having Strong’s numbers for things. Thanks to him I learned I could actually search for specific instances of words in the original Hebrew on the BibleHub site using said Strong’s numbers (I hadn’t known I could do that previously).

    I had taken it for granted that “abomination” and “sin” were pretty much the same thing (since it’s what I was taught). I realized that was a rather foolish assumption on my part, especially considering what I’d learned about Biblical translation (and mistranslation) in my theology courses. Naturally I decided to look up the other uses of toebah and so discovered it didn’t actually mean what I had been lead to believe after all. Toebah is consistently used to indicate that something is against tradition, offensive, disgusting or disdain-worthy. It is indicative of aversion, not evil. To think otherwise would mean that pork and incense were inherently sinful, which is silly. I’m a scientist (specifically a chemist) so revising old theories upon receiving new information is second nature to me. I gained new insight into the meaning of the word toebah and so changed my interpretation accordingly.

    Back before my upper division theology course, during which Greek and Roman traditions and beliefs about sexuality were discussed extensively, I used to think that verse in Romans was actually talking about lesbian woman as well as gay men. It became pretty clear that definitely wasn’t the case though. Greco-Roman tradition allowed men to have sex with pretty much anyone of lower rank then themselves… Wives, slaves, prostitutes, young apprentices, you name it (though the Romans were less keen on the “young apprentices” part then the Greeks). Women though? Having sex with anyone but their husbands was entirely forbidden. Married free women (eg. not slaves) would never be allowed to take part in pagan fertility rituals that could possibly involve sex with someone not their husband. This makes the chances of women who were not temple prostitutes taking part absolutely nil. Add to that the Jewish distaste for anything outside of God’s plan (like say spilling “seed” anywhere outside the womb) and what sort of practices Paul is referring to is pretty clear. Again, I learned pertinent information and so changed my interpretation accordingly.

    I’m afraid you are still incorrect about arsenokoitai. Back before I learned about the history of the translation and the weak justification for translating it that way I probably would have agreed with you, but I’ve become wiser since then. The two words it is made of simply aren’t enough to say it means homosexuality in general. I’ll grant that we don’t exactly have all that many uses of the word to look at, but the uses we do have don’t match that assertion. Suddenly bringing up homosexuality in a list including stealing seeds, betraying information, murder, denying wages, and oppressing the poor doesn’t make any sense. I read through Sibylline Oracle; there were other parts that discussed sexual sins like lust, adultery, fornication, paying for prostitutes, etc. If arsenokoitai was just a matter of illicit sex, that’s where it would be. It’s not there though… It’s listed with all the sins related to exploiting people instead.

    It’s no secret that the ancient Hebrews did not think highly of sexual relations between men, but the evidence points to their aversion being one centered more upon disgust and disapproval of deviation then upon morality based disapproval.

    Sorry for this being a long post, but I think it’s worth knowing how my perspective changed with time. Maybe if Guest gets a chance to read it will change her own perspective.

  • LadySunami

    Turns out Guest was reading posts from farther back then I thought, back when I didn’t know the context of toebah. Kudos to you Guest for pointing out my past ignorance! (Although in her mind it was my past correctness I guess).

  • LadySunami

    I’m not gay actually, I’m asexual. I am attracted to neither men nor women. My sexuality (or lack thereof) in no way influences my interpretation of passages related to male-male sexual activity. It would be weird if it did.

    The closest the Bible gets to mentioning my sexuality is Matthew 19:12… only I’m pretty sure “born eunuchs” refers to male-identified intersex individuals, not asexual women.

  • Ron McPherson

    Femi,

    Incredible insight full of grace, truth and love. Obviously Spirit-filled. Oozing Jesus! God bless…You need to write a book : )

  • Who’s denying God? I’m denying that you understand the Bible.

  • You can always tell by the screen name. It’s always something like HolyAmbassador or Connected2Truth or something like that.

    Just once, I’d like to see them pick an honest screen name, like IHaveAProphetComplexAndWillProbablyBurnDownA711.

  • I’m interested to see if “One Truth” actually pays much attention to what the Bible actually says.

  • And there’s also the nice vocative change in Romans 2:1, which seems to indicate that most of Romans 1 is Paul quoting the people he turns the tables on in chapter 2 as opposed to it being an exposition of Paul’s own views.

  • Worst. Flounce. Ever.

  • Stop molesting Bibles LS.

    I’m not sure how one goes about doing that, but stop it.

  • Herm

    Oh Femi, my now second dearest sibling in God, I love you so very, very much, 7X70. amen

  • Herm

    Todd, if you do not know the Holy Spirit as the only inerrant word of God it is your hardened heart and mind that is blind. Dear Lord, please, help us to proclaim the Gospel to Todd! amen

  • Raptured by the blood moon.

  • Snooterpoot

    I think that many fundamentalist/evangelical Christians could be aptly described as followers of Paul more than they are followers of Jesus.

  • Frank

    No conundrum at all. The bible doesn’t tell us to do those things. The Koran tells them to do what they do.

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Ya, being your own god. That doesn’t require any editing does it?

  • Popvaditecclesiae

    Thats because they are humanists not Christians. They follow the god they see in the mirror. Not the One True God, who died on the cross for their sins. They don’t need Jesus, as their is no sin and no hell. Well their is one sin. Being a believer in the Christian Bible.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I am supposing that you have as much technical knowledge as the brilliant people I worked with at America Online. At least, I hope you do.
    Do you know what the possible consequences of a wide-open broadband connection could be to your intellectual property?
    Have you ever dealt with, or had a friend who had to deal with, a vicious worm or other attack on their computer?
    Do you know what a simple power surge during a thunderstorm could do to your tower and its contents?
    Do you know a program that you could embed in an email, that would not even have to be opened, that would “e-bomb” your computer and destroy the tower? I don’t, but I have friends who do, and when they get a “ping,” telling them that someone is trying to get into their system, they might fire off that program and whoever-it-is will be out pricing new computers. This can be devastating if you have a custom-built tower, as I did until I moved away from my tech gurus.
    What would it mean to you if your documents or images were all stolen? My daughter had a similar experience when her photos were posted online without her permission.
    My advice to you is to start backing up everything you do, every day, in a separate external hard drive that you disconnect from the tower last thing of the day. Or, you could simply power down. The choice is yours.
    I am an artsy-fartsy creative type myself, by the way, although most of my creative energy goes into writing. I would never dream of leaving my computer open to some nasty genius who laughs at virus protection programs and thinks it’s funny to harm perfect strangers.
    And are you SURE that some IT person doesn’t shut your computer down every night anyway, and someone else restarts before you come in? Or do you work at home–antivirus, anti-malware, firewall all in place?
    And I get trouble anyway, once in awhile!

  • Jeff Preuss

    Oh, I shut mine down every night. I understand enough to do that. I could explain all the other stuff to my co-worker, but she has a certain resistance to hearing stuff like that. In one ear, out the other.

  • Margot Fernandez

    I’m taking your question seriously. It depends on what you want from religion. Certainty usually has a bad effect on a personality, as we can see in people who defy laws and morals because they believe they have sure and certain knowledge about right and wrong.
    So the know-nothing literal fundamentalists are determined to learn nothing that would shake their certainty. It isn’t that I blame them–it is just that, think about it here, certainty makes it impossible to have faith. If you believe that you KNOW (you can’t do any more than believe), you do not have to make any further effort to grow spiritually, to learn, or to listen to anyone else. I’m sure I don’t have to draw you a picture for you to get how attractive this is.
    And there is always the Monster God–the one who will toss Kim Davis into a lake of fire if she makes ONE misstep after she was forgiven for everything she did before she joined her present un-Christian church. Who forgave her is another issue–my belief is that she was never “condemned” in the first place, at least not if God is pure, unconditional love as Christians (sometimes) claim.
    As for Bishop Spong, your conjecture that he is something of a provocateur is correct. His works are aimed at the theological and denominational community, but they are based on his world-class level of Scriptural scholarship. His attitude is something like, learn it and let the chips fall where they may. He is elderly now but as white-hot in his intellectual honesty as he ever was. I note that he has not been challenged seriously on his scholarship, only on his conclusions, which many people don’t want to hear (and this is where you came in, LOL).

  • I’ve been sitting on a draft of a post wherein I analyze and discuss Spong’s twelve points from the perspective of a non-Christian, but sadly I lost my muse a couple of years ago. What I can happily spoil is that from that perspective, his arguments are refreshing — to trade in the mysticism which never should have been the focus of Christianity for the spiritual wonder and its meaning here on Earth. The message I constantly get from authoritarian posts is that they worship God because God is powerful, not because God is good — or rather, that God is good because God is powerful. The implication is disturbing — that if God were unjust and cruel, God would still be what we should consider good in all matters, purely because he carries the biggest stick. (These also seem to be the people who argue that without God, there would be no reason not to rape and murder wantonly… small wonder they frighten me.)

  • If I understand your point, it shows a curious lack of faith in the power of God to work without a script.

    That would be a common indicator of Bibleism.

    Hope this helps to clarify my meaning.

    (Even if you are just trolling.)

  • Ron McPherson

    Thanks a lot Phil. Just spewed coffee all over my computer screen : )

  • So…as long we aren’t currently commanded to commit genocide, that makes it okay in the past (Old Testament)?

  • Frank

    I am not defending human genocide. I am simply stating that there is no conundrum because the bible doesn’t tell us to do those things while some Muslims are simply doing what their holy book tells them.

    It’s a false equivalency if there ever was one.

  • Investigator

    “…overwhelming the early concepts with obsession over virginity, Dualism, and the rejection of Jesus’ humanity.”

    I’m not sure what you mean by obsession with virginity and dualism but the church certainly didn’t reject Jesus’ humanity AND it was Paul who stated in Titus 2:13 “while we wait for the blessed hope–the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ…” or in Romans 9:5 “…from them is traced the human ancestry of Christ, who is God over all…”

    Also, the separation between Jewish Christians and the Jewish faith occurred very early. Partially as a result of the Christian Jews NOT supporting the rebellion against Rome, Jewish leaders in Palestine about AD 84, sent word to their synagogues that Jewish Christians were to be excluded from their assemblies.

  • Investigator

    One does not necessarily exclude the other. I worship the Lord but I see people just as people…people for whom Christ died.

  • Investigator

    If Peter supports Paul, who supports Mathew, who supports Luke, etc., THAT is NOT circular reasoning…they are different authors and different books. The fact that you find them in the same binding does not mean they are the same book.

  • Bones

    So Christians have never committed genocide?

  • Bones

    Matthew doesn’t support Luke in some instances and didn’t like Mark’s beginning or ending. There’s no way the Pastorals were written by Paul or 2 Peter was written by Peter. Revelation was a repudiation of Pauline Christianity.
    To accept 2 Tim 3:16, you have to start with that presumption.

  • One Truth

    “So, because I’m trying to hold you to what the Bible actually says, I’m blind and can’t see the truth. But you, who are making the Bible say a bunch of stuff it doesn’t”

    ” 2 Peter 1:16-21 does not say anything about God’s word being inerrant; { he is establishing the validity of his own prophecy } ”

    As most other here who post against what I say about Gods Word…..You are a bold faced LIAR as we will now see, and your only intention is to Tear Down and Discredit The Lord Jesus Christ and His Holy Word.

    Lets Read It Together Phillip. 2 Peter 2:19-21

    SO WE HAVE THE PROPHETIC WORD MADE MORE SURE, TO WHICH YOU YOU DO WELL TO PAY ATTENTION AS TO A LAMP SHINNING IN A DARK PLACE, UNTIL THE DAY DAWNS AND THE MORNING STAR ARISES IN YOUR HEARTS.
    BUT KNOW THIS FIRST OF ALL, THAT **NO PROPHECY OF SCRIPTURE** IS A MATTER OF ONES OWN INTERPRETATION, FOR **NO PROPHECY WAS EVER MADE BY AN ACT OF HUMAN WILL, BUT MEN MOVED BY THE HOLY SPIRIT SPOKE FORM GOD**.

    Is that what it says Phillip, That Peter is speaking JUST OF HIS PROPHECY? Read it again arrogant Fool.

  • One Truth

    “Worst. Flounce. Ever.”

    Is that how you think you will pride yourself here?

    Phil, your a dead man walking and if your heart and mind remain in its current state to your death, you will fall flat on your face before the Creator of ALL THINGS, and Then You will know what it means to be the WORST FLOUNCE EVER and be speechless, found naked in your sins because you chose to reject the washing of the blood of Jesus Christ and refused to be clothed in CHRIST, in order to hide your shame and sin from a Holy and Mighty GOD.

    God, His Image and His Truth will not be mocked. You laugh now, Sir…You will not laugh then.

  • Jeff Preuss

    I see that argument often in the most belligerent attacks at atheism – the assertion that atheists have no moral compass without God, and therefore can not be trusted NOT to lie, steal, or murder, since they believe there is no God saying no.

  • I believe what I said is he is putting his own prophecy in the tradition of Old Testament prophecy. The Old Testament is what “Scripture” means there, not the Bible. The Bible did not exist when the author of 2 Peter wrote that.

  • Buddy, you wouldn’t recognize the gospel if Paul himself told it to you. You have a framework of beliefs in your head, but they don’t come from what the Bible actually says.

  • Also, it doesn’t say anything about being inerrant or literal.

  • One Truth

    I can just imagine when you and herm came across this statement that you were just ecstatic and had to sing your praises to her. And you two should really try to control yourselves a little better. Your drama is pathetic to say the least.

    .”I do not believe that every letter of the the written word of God is always to be taken literarily.”

    You ( so called ) Christians will be in for a rude awakening on The Lords Day…..Depart form Me, for I never knew you.

  • I know. How did people ever have faith in God before there was a Bible?

  • One Truth

    So our Perfect God is a Liar?

  • No, although He has certainly used deception when it suits Him (1 Kings 22:19-23). But certainly not being literal is not a lie. If I say it’s raining cats and dogs outside, that’s not a lie if actual water is coming down and not literal cats and dogs.

    And just because biblical texts may contain inaccuracies does not mean God is a liar, either. It means people writing in their own voices from their own point in history working with different sources are going to say different things from one another as well as speak from their worldview. This is why the biblical world sometimes has four corners and is sometimes a flat circle, but is never a sphere.

  • One Truth

    Nooo. Really?……… That’s because Peter wrote 2 Peter Phil.

    Your blindness causes you to misunderstand even the most strait forward statement in those few verses. Let me spell it out for you. GOD is the author of ALL SCRIPTURE IN THE BIBLE. All 66 books. Every Word Spoken. Every Jot.

  • One Truth

    See my post below. This is circular with you and a waste of my time.

  • There is no verse that says that.

    It is also unlikely that Peter wrote 2 Peter. 1 Peter is written in fluent academic Greek, and 2 Peter is written in terrible Greek and even has grammatical errors. In addition, plenty of early church fathers quote from 1 Peter, but nobody ever mentions 2 Peter until the late second century. Also, 2 Peter borrows a lot of material from both Jude and 1 Enoch.

    But even if it was Peter who wrote it, that doesn’t change the fact that “Scripture” does not mean the New Testament in that letter. It can’t, because it doesn’t exist at the time.

  • Well, it is rather circular, because you keep saying the same things over and over despite your assertions not being anywhere in the Bible. It’s kind of frightening, really, how much you believe that the Scriptures do not say.

  • It does tell us to wipe out cities (and close relatives) that try to talk us into worshiping other gods. – Deut. 13

  • Bones

    That’s not what 2 Peter 2:19-21 says….

  • Bones

    There’s no way in the world Peter wrote 2 Peter. It is a second century document.

  • Investigator

    “As one of the targets of your abuse, I ask you…are you feeding me or beating me?”

    As Paul said, I am set for the defense of the gospel. For those attacking the gospel, my challenges may feel like a beating. As this purports to be a Christian blog, I am dismayed at the hostile attitude toward scripture. However, it is NOT my intention to simply piss people off, but provide an alternative view lest silence be construed as an absence of compelling evidence; I wish I was better at a it.

    Let’s remember, in almost the first conversation I had here I was called an “idiot”. I’m not complaining for I write on a plethora of topics and in other venues, I’ve been called everything imaginable; one woman even said she wished I would die. So, I am pretty thick skinned, I just want to point out the old cliche about those who live in glass houses.

    Jeff, I am always ready and willing to hit the reset button, and right now I extend my hand to you, or any one else, who may wish a do-over.

  • Investigator