I probably will be gone for most of the weekend so here is a third article just in case.
I wrote a rebuttal to Enns’ article linked above and as my policy I sent a note via an id to inform him of what was written. I included an invitation to him to respond but so far nothing has come of that except silence. It turns out that the id used was placed under moderation and I doubt the comments ever made it to the board. It was placed under moderation because it dare to challenge his comment ‘no one is calling God a liar’. The challenge was simply quoting his own words and stating that those words seem to contradict his comment.’
I guess Enns is like so many other scholars that they do not like being challenged or have their faith called into question. Again, if you declare or believe that creation did not take place as God wrote it, then you are calling God a liar.
#2. Separation Of Church And State— http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/2015/05/self-defeating-religion.html
Hemant Mehta drew attention to the fact that what some conservative religious people in the United States today want – namely to obliterate the separation between church and state – is arguably the most self-defeating course of action they could pursue.
I do not support this idea and I already know that it is not originally included in the constitution. The ACLU and other civil rights law firms use what is called the establishment clause
which was found in a letter and forever read into the constitution and not exegeted out of it.I will disagree with Mr. Mehta and the person he quotes for two reasons: First, the secular world has had held of all nations since the beginning of time and look at the mess they have made of this world. The ways of the secular world do not work and this idea has been supported generation after generation throughout history.
Second, the idea of allowing religious beliefs to intermingle with governmental policies would not be self-defeating if wise, understanding, knowledgeable, God-fearing and following true Christians were placed in control of all forms of government. Some of the people claiming to be Christian running for next year’s vacancy and those who have run in the past do not meet this description and would probably make things worse than they already are.
It would take time to make the correct changes and give them enough of it to work and settle in but too many religious politicians are not that patient nor that caring. Political leadership i snot for just anyone and too many people do not understand what good leadership entails and they just embarrass Christ and themselves with their loaded and unsupported rhetoric. It is never pretty to see.
But if one wants the type of world the unbeliever is demanding and craving then the only recourse they have is to find those believers who do listen to God and who thoughtfully, wisely and carefully implement rules that make society a better place to live. They are not going to get that type of world as long as the unbeliever is in charge.
#3. We Need Leaders Who Do Not Say Things To Just Get In The News— http://www.patheos.com/blogs/slacktivist/2015/05/12/james-dobson-cannot-really-believe-what-he-says-about-legal-abortion-and-the-holocaust/
America has killed over 55 million babies, 55 million. You know, the Holocaust involved 6 million Jews, we’re talking 55 million babies. There’s a Planned Parenthood about two blocks from my house and I drive past it every day and I see these cars out there and I fear for the women who are making, I think, the biggest mistake of their lives and certainly the implications for their babies. We need, as a nation, to repent of the immorality, what we see on television and in the movies and how young people are being led into immoral behavior, there’s just so much.
James Dobson is quoted as saying this at that link and to tell you the truth, though he touches on a real problem, how he says it is just annoying and wrong. I say annoying because I will hear about it one way or the other from non-believers and wrong because we should not be making such irrational statements that make God look foolish or believing in him as membership in a lunatic asylum.
Dobson is not the only one as he is joined by Franklin Graham, Mike Huckabee, Michael Bachmann, and of course, Sarah Palin and it makes me cringe whenever I see headlines that quote statements by those people who say they are leaders and claim to be Christian. Their wild rhetoric seems to be motivated by getting their names in the news and getting attention. We do not need to get the world’s attention, we have God’s and he is the only one who can bring about repentance and change.
It does little or no good blabbing a way to reporters as that is not a biblical teaching. What is a biblical teaching is for Christians to go into their ‘prayer closets and pray and the one who sees in secret will…’ Dobson and the rest would make a greater impact if they stopped sending out religious soundbites and spent more time praying.
Let’s stop raising stumbling blocks to Christ by these news conference quotes and break them down by doing what God really wants us to do.
When Divorce Is Right is Sofia’s latest book in the Hijacked Life – Rescue Your Dream series, in which the pastor lists three reasons found in the Bible as grounds for divorce: adultery, abandonment, and the hijacking of God’s call. Explaining more about the three reasons for divorce, Sofia pointed out that both infidelity and abandonment cause disruption to an individual’s calling and/or their walk with God.
I wish that pastors and other church leaders would stop importing their own ideas into scripture and simply preach the word. I think that one of the things that tires me out most, when dealing with different worldly affairs, is the reading of pastors and church leaders who stray from the Bible and preach their own ideas to Christian people.
It is a well-known that the local church will usually go as the Pastor goes and if the Pastor goes awry it takes really spiritually sharp people to spare the church from following his lead. I remember having a discussion with a lady years ago on a Christian discussion forum on this very issue. No matter how many times I posted that divorce was for adultery only, she would post the words ‘and abandonment’ because HER pastor had told her that abandonment was a scriptural reason to divorce. But that thinking comes from mis-reading Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 7:
12 But to the rest I say, not the Lord, that if any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he must not [f]divorce her. 13 And a woman who has an unbelieving husband, and he consents to live with her, she must not [g]send her husband away. 14 For the unbelieving husband is sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified through [h]her believing husband; for otherwise your children are unclean, but now they are holy. 15 Yet if the unbelieving one leaves, let him leave; the brother or the sister is not under bondage in such cases, but God has called [i]us [j]to peace. 16 For how do you know, O wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, O husband, whether you will save your wife?
These words are not saying ‘get divorced’ they are simply saying let them leave and if they do not apply for divorce, then you are merely separated. Why do I say this? Because of the previous passage of scripture
10 But to the married I give instructions, not I, but the Lord, that the wife should not [d]leave her husband 11 (but if she does leave, she must remain unmarried, or else be reconciled to her husband), and that the husband should not [e]divorce his wife.
There is no permission to divorce given in this whole chapter,none that would support those two pastors’ point of view. None that would contradict or contravene Jesus’ command made back in the Sermon on the Mount:
but I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except for the reason of unchastity, makes her commit adultery; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery. (Mt. 5:32)
We should not make divorce the unpardonable sin when that is not the case but we should marry for the right reasons and think through our decisions about whom we marry very thoroughly before having the wedding ceremony. The church does not handle this issue very well, nor does that pastor at that link. He goes too far to one side and makes blanket statements when divorce needs to be handled on a case by case basis, with God’s leading and input.
That does not mean we use God as a sledgehammer to force our views of marriage upon others but that we truly hear from God first before guiding the divorced person in their next steps. We have made people suffer needlessly in this issue and that is not right or fair to all believers. BUT then this does not mean that we are as permissive with divorce as the unbelieving world. This issue takes wise heads to deal with and not the emotional who confuse their feelings with God’s will.
#5. Some Leaders Really Need To Stop Speaking— http://www.christianpost.com/news/a-d-the-bible-continues-is-gods-plan-for-teaching-people-about-jesus-says-joel-houston-139117/
Joel Houston, leader of Hillsong NYC and the church’s worship band Hillsong UNITED, says NBC’s “A.D. The Bible Continues” is “God’s plan for helping people understand who Jesus is” and is expected to appear on a companion series “Beyond A.D.” on Sunday when the seventh episode of the show will be aired
I have only read about this series as I have no intention of watching it. I get updates from CT Entertainment and to say the least, I strongly disagree with that Hillsong leader. How can you help teach unbelievers about Jesus when you distort what he said and did, when you add in conversations, actions, behaviors that were not recorded and basically alter the text to fit dramatic t.v. production?
Those are the good points I have about both series from Downey and Burnett. If we want people to understand Jesus, then we need to do as Jesus taught us. We need to believe as Jesus believed and stop pursuing the things of this world. We do not need to look ‘cool’. contemporary or secular. We just need to be like Christ.
In an interview with The Christian Post prior to taping the digital talk show on Tuesday, Houston explained that “A.D. The Bible Continues” fits God’s plan for teaching people about Jesus.
My response to that is: Really? How does he know God’s plan for teaching people? The Bible, though not eliminating t.v. from being used, certainly did not say to make angels after ninja warriors and lie to people about what went on in the first century AD or any part of biblical history.
I think honestly, the culture and the world that we live in is crying out for truth and crying out for something real,” said Houston when asked why a staggering 13.1 million viewers tuned into “A.D. The Bible Continues” during its Easter Sunday premiere.
While he is correct that the people of the world are looking for something real, a television show misrepresenting the Bible is not going to answer their cry. If we want to give the world something real, then the church needs to stop playing games, stop the infighting, get back to the truth and treat the world as Jesus instructed, all the while worshiping God in spirit and truth.
The world won’t see God if his followers do not do the things Jesus said.
#6. Some Leaders Need To Think First— http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2015/05/14/lawyer-defending-creationist-theme-park-just-drafted-bill-giving-tax-breaks-to-similar-attractions-in-louisiana/
We know that Creationist Ken Ham‘s Answers in Genesis is currently suing the state of Kentucky because he wrongly thinks his for-profit company can limit its hiring to Christians only. Earlier this year, he even posted a video that featured a lawyer defending his right to discriminate:
While I agree that church organizations need to keep leadership and other key positions totally Christian, how do we represent Christ if we do not hire those unbelievers who need work to feed their families? By using the words ‘need to think’ I mean that they really should think through their plans to build such giant enterprises.
They should not assume that God wants them to bypass hiring those people in need of work if the position is non-influential in the enterprise’s scope and purpose and they should not assume that God is going to give them a pass on all the governmental laws governing their enterprise. You just do not know who you are going to win to Christ by giving them a job. Obviously you cannot hire a non-christian when the job entails meeting the public and representing a biblical message but there are other jobs that can be filled by the unbeliever and that one planting of a seed can lead to bigger results.
I disagree with Ham on two counts. First, I disagree that he needs to build that park. Surely there are other projects that need the funding which would not require a discrimination on who is employed. When I voiced my complaint to AIG, they relied upon studies not need or actual participation in the community to rebut my points. I can see a far better use for that money than an ark park and it would achieve their objective far better than their current lawsuit is going to do.
Those alternative projects would give AIG a far better reputation than they are getting right now thus they are hindering their work, not helping it. The second count I disagree with on Ham is the use of anti-biblical means to further his AIG ‘kingdom’. We really do not need theme parks and lawsuits to reach people for Christ- we simply need to do as Christ said honestly.
Who wants to go to a theme park to just be preached at? People of the world get enough preaching, they do not get enough caring, compassion, true guidance, direction and so on. These things you cannot put in a park nor promote. They just need to be done with God’s help.
He already drafted a bill that would allow people to deny service to LGBT individuals on the basis of “religious freedom.”
I do not like the sound of this but then I am reading an atheist’s point of view there. Given how abusive, bullying, vindictive, and so on, the homosexual community can be, we do need to clarify what actions cannot be supported by Christians and other faiths in order to keep them from being deprived of their lives,liberty and savings.
The constitution clearly allows for the free practice of one’s religion but it does not allow for vengeful people of taking advantage and getting even by driving the religious out into the street without a penny. The constitution is not a document guiding the way to getting rich quickly, especially at the expense of others. But the unchurched world does not look at these situations the same and cannot understand the objections the Christian and religious world have nor their importance.
Nor do they care. This is why the believer needs to think things through carefully and instead of relying upon special bills or studies, they rely upon God’s direction for he already knows what objections the believer will face when conducting their business.