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Warriors for Christ #fundie #homophobia patheos.com

Facebook has added rainbow flag emojis, and a Christian Facebook page is promising to ban anyone who uses them.

In honor of LGBT Pride month the rainbow flag is joining the “thumbs up” and “heart sign,” as well as “excited,” “shocked,’ “sad,” and “angry” emoji as a way to react on Facebook.

However, the Warriors for Christ Facebook page is not happy that Facebook has added a rainbow flag emoji to their list of possible post reactions, and issued a stern warning explaining that anyone using a rainbow flag emoji would be banned.

As one might expect, many reasonable people accepted the challenge, and bombarded the anti-gay Christian Facebook page with happy rainbow flag emojis.

In response, the Christian Facebook page issued the following public service announcement:

"Public service annoucement (sic).
Despite all the lies and false accusations here we are not being hateful to any person. We also will not back down from proclaimimg (sic) truth of God’s word.

Sin is sin period. Sin results in eternal seperation (sic) from God. Despite your lack of understanding of love, we here love everyone enough to speak the truth even in the face of so much hate.

So we speak the truth that sin leads to death, but we have a savior that can set one free from sin and give them a new life in Christ."

And this:

"Lord I know that right now many lost people are being sent here by the powers of darkness that control them to harass this page. I pray that when they come here that their eyes be opened up to the truth of your word. Your word is living and active and has the power to reach the heart. And even though these people are coming here as our enemies to hate us, I still pray blessings over them and pray you open their eyes to see the truth clearly. Satan has blinded many to the truth, but we come against any attack or insult or curse of the enemy in Jesus name."

Bottom line: The “Warriors for Christ” are feeling persecuted because their anti-gay rhetoric is being ridiculed. And all their prayers to a God that does not exist will never justify their pious bigotry and hatred.

afchief #wingnut patheos.com

Nope! Still wrong! A COURT DECISION IS NOT A LAW!! Do you understand that? Roe v Wade is NOT the law of the land. Roe v Wade was an OPINION handed down by judges. Judges and courts do not make laws, but rather merely render opinions.

Did you know that the Supreme Court once rendered the opinion that black men were inferior to whites? Did you know that the Supreme Court once ruled that women had no legal right to vote? Did you know that as recently as 1986 the Supreme Court ruled that there was no right to homosexual sodomy?

Courts only offer opinions. Opinions can change when judges change. The law cannot be changed by a “judge.” If that were the case, our “laws” would be as constantly changing as the “judges” are.

If “judges” ruled that sodomy was illegal in 1986, how did sodomy become “legal” today? Did the law change, or did the “opinions” of the “judges” change?

[An all-caps COURT DECISION is, however, still a binding legal ruling. Do you not understand that?]

NEGATIVE!!!! It is an OPINION!!!! Do you have any idea how our government works? Any at all?????

dangjin1 #fundie patheos.com

. You have no evidence for interbreeding leading to new and different animals. A dog is a dog is a dog. You are desperately trying to work around the 'kind' barrier God put up n the beginning and it doesn't work.
Evolution predicts that cats do not give birth to dolphins?? ha ha, that is stating th eobvious not a scientific fact. The Bible already told us that in the Genesis, you are a little bit behind the curve.
an untrained lay person?? so your theory can only be seen by the elite who set the rules for the theory. how quaint and unfair and how circular in reasoning. with creation and the Bible God set the rules and everyone can see the truth, trained or otherwise.
You have no evidence as the idea of predictions comes from pseudo-science not real science. Plus your predictions have not been 100% accurate, so you reallly do not have that idea to stand upon.

isalcordo #fundie patheos.com

Darwinian evolution has two major premises: a) chance or random events isclaimed to have initiated life and b) survival of the fittest of that organisms which eventually evolved to produce us humans.

Now, it has never been shown or demonstrated by science of lifeless matter spontaneously acquiring biological life as we know it.

While survival of the fittest is an every day occurences, like big fish swallowing up the small fish, random events as the INITIATOR of life is a complete denial of the role of the CREATOR OF LIFE or God or of His divine personalities.

Darwinian evolutionists should know by now that LIFE IS NOT INHERENT IN MATTER, otherwise today's rocks that have existed billions of years ago or billions of years old would be teeming with COMPLETELY NEW LIFE dateable to within decades or years that can be counted using the fingers of just our one hand from this very day.

Without God seeding matter (earth) with life and guiding life's evolution from dust and organic matter to the point of producing all the plants and the animals, and eventually us humans, the earth would have remained BARREN to this day. Evolution CANNOT begin until God seeded this earth with that seed of life.

See my earlier post on this article.

Dr. I. S. Alcordo, Ph.D.

Bowling Green Fire Department #fundie patheos.com

A lawsuit filed this week by an atheist firefighter against the city of Bowling Green (Kentucky) has some damning claims about what he witnessed in the department.

Jeffrey Queen worked at the Bowling Green Fire Department for the past five years. But after several of his complaints were ignored, some by Deputy Chief Dustin Rockrohr (who is also named in the lawsuit), he was given a leave of absence earlier this year before being formally discharged in May.

Queen alleges in the lawsuit that he faced repeated harassment from co-workers because he is an atheist and was often called gay slurs. In one incident described in the complaint, a captain allegedly said he would burn down Queen’s house because he was an atheist, and in another a firefighter allegedly told him “if a homo works here, we’ll make sure he dies in a fire. We’ll chop his feet off.”

Queen’s complaint also alleges that both leadership and rank-and-file members of the fire department showed contempt for and used slurs to describe minority groups in Bowling Green, such as African-Americans, Muslims and the LGBT community. It refers to firefighters calling Muslims “towelheads” and “sandn—–” who should be deported or killed, and references a video — which is posted on the [law firm] Craig Henry website — of one burning the Quran in front of a fire station. The complaint also alleges that a captain said atheists “deserve to burn,” and several referred to a group of African-American men as “hood rats,” “n——” and “thugs.”

The complaint also alleges that firefighters repeatedly called LGBT people “faggots” and suggested they would not touch LGBT people because they “probably had AIDS.” According to the complaint, a crew allegedly put such words into action, declining to offer medical care to a man experiencing chest pain after determining he was gay.

Pat Robertson #fundie patheos.com

On Wednesday’s edition of The 700 Club, Pat Robertson kicked off his Dear Abby-style “Honest Answers” segment with a question from a viewer who was very concerned that her son had married an atheist and wanted to know what she should do about that.

Ethyl wrote:

When my son told me he was going to marry an atheist, it was a tough pill to swallow, but I managed to get through it. I raised my son to believe we, as Christians, should only marry inside the church, but I know he loves her so much that I can’t bring myself to say anything about it. Should I respect his right to make his own choice?

Yes, yes Ethyl, you should absolutely do that. Because it is not your business.

That, of course, is not what Pat Robertson said.

He said that Jesus doesn’t have any fellowship with Belial (the Devil), and that people in the church should not be “unequally yoked” with non-believers, and that Billy Graham said, “You marry an atheist, then you’ve got the devil for your father-in-law.”

This is factually untrue. If you were to marry me, you would have Dante for a father-in-law. Not the Inferno one, of course, just the one who is my dad and has no relation to the fiery pits of hell whatsoever. Robertson explained to Ethyl that although she could give him advice and counsel him, this was all her fault for having been such a terrible parent.

Why? Because the Bible said to “Raise up a child in the way he should go and when he’s old he won’t depart.” And then, just to hammer home the point, Robertson added, “You haven’t raised him very well if he’s going into atheism right now.”

Pastor Steven Anderson #fundie patheos.com

Today we have women’s rights! We’ve come a long way, baby! And today, you know, [in a mocking voice] ‘Oh those horrible, horrible days when women had no rights’… Let’s bring them back! Let’s get back to those days! [Fake scream] What are you so worried about? What do you think they mean when they say ‘women’s rights’? You know what they mean? The right to divorce your husband is what they mean. You know what they mean? The right to rebel and disobey your husband. The right to divorce him. The right to go out and get a job and make your own money. The right to tell him what to do. The right to go vote for our leaders as if women should have any say in how our country is run, when the Bible says that ‘I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence’? I AM QUOTING THE BIBLE RIGHT NOW! But it’s old-fashioned.

DM #fundie patheos.com

(=A response to "Clobbering Biblical Gay Bashing=)

You lost me at: "so I’m not even having that discussion" If you build a whole argument on something that is highly debatable but you won't acknowledge there is another opinion then it is difficult to engage you in the rest of your conversation.

The Bible is very clear on homosexuality- it is a sin. Sleeping with someone before marriage is a sin, cheating on a spouse is a sin, drinking to excess is a sin. A sin is a sin and everyone on this earth has sinned. If you talk to an informed Christian they will admit that these are all sins and that not one is more severe than another. A Christian will do well to love everybody as their brother and sister in Christ but will also do well to point out an error to them when they are in the wrong. The Bible does warn that we shouldn't judge but 2 Timothy 3:16 (NIV) tells us- All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness

The difference between homosexuality and other sins is that one becomes hardened to it. There are other sins that one hardens themselves to but homosexuality is one of the most prominent because it usually isn't a one time thing but more so a lifestyle. The real problem is that when someone becomes hardened to a sin they become separated from God.

What you are saying is discrediting the Bible and like many other people of the times you are trying to read the Bible to fit your opinion. Instead I would encourage you to pray to God and ask him for wisdom to understand the scriptures as it was intended, not as you want to read in to it. Biblical truths are not always popular, but they are truths-
Matthew 7:24- (ESV) “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.
and
Isaiah 5:20 (ESV) Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!

Thanks be to God that Christ came to earth as true God and true man, lived the perfect life in our place to be the atoning sacrifice for all of our sins, homosexuality, adultery, murder, etc... Because of this love by God for us we are washed in his blood through this perfect sacrifice for OUR sins. Those that believe in this WILL have eternal life. But my friends please don't be the one that tries to change what God's word actually says and twists his words or follow such false teachings.

2 Timothy 4:2-4 (ESV)- For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.

Love your brother and sister in Christ, get to know them on a personal level, help them with their struggles. Furthermore explain to them the love of Christ and what he did for all sinners. Importantly when someone is caught in a Satan's snare and is trapped in a sin point the sin out to the sinner in love and gently bring them back to Christ so that their sin may not cost them their faith in God. Remember it isn't our words that will do the work but God and the Holy Spirit working through them!

Christopher Hubbard #fundie patheos.com

(Context:This is from a lengthy conversation that has since been deleted because of how bad it got. Highlighted talking points are brought up by this fundie in an attempt to avoid TLDR)

No! We shouldn't be encouraging others to follow sin, we are supposed to help them and educate them...properly...

(*show pictures of raunchy gay stereotypes, namely from pride parades*)

This is unhealthy.

(*Shows picture of a happy strait couple*)

This is healthy.

(*Shows pic of another raunchy gay stereotype*)

Unhealthy.

(*Another pic of a strait couple*)

Healthy.

(*Extremely raunchy gay picture from a pride festival*)

Unhealthy.

(*Shows a pic of an outgoing*)

Healthy...and happy.

(*Another commenter shows a pic of gay parents raising children, saying they are also happy and healthy*)

Where's mommy ? (*Another pic of that same variety*) Where's daddy ? You are proving my point for me.

(*Gets asked hypothetically if it would be better for a lesbian to raise a child with her rapist or a man that abuses her and the children, than female lover*)

The studies at Focus on the Family show that children are better in stable homes...raised by biological parents.

(*Gets a link of studies that show gay families are just as good as strait families*)

All this is nonsense that has been completely debunked by experts

(*links several Focus on the Family pages, and other such studies*)

Men cannot mother...race doesn't matter. Gender does.

(*Gets asked a question that implies of he would try to abduct a child raised by gay parents if they moved near him*)

Uh huh.

(*Gets asked what motivates them and is informed one of the people he's talking to is gay*)

Peace and serenity my friend *smile emoji* peace and serenity...if you are struggling with this, I suggest you work under the care of Dr. Nicolossi.

(*Is informed of what he's endorsing*)

No, it doesn't torture people. On the contrary it fixes them. Getting over our orientation is just a part of growing up.

(*Gets asked if he'd rather children of be orphaned if it meant that gay couples couldn't raise them*)

No there's also adoption, and grandparents. Bless grandparents.

(*Is told that the children of gay parents are just fine and don't care who raises them/aren't agonizing over separation of a surrogate parents/the surrogate isn't agonizing over letting their child be raised, etc*)

Like hell they don't care! I can't help but imagine them crying themselves to sleep over night over separation from their parent or child, it's absolutely heartbreaking!...I want you to do something; go to YOUR parents and ask them if they could do the same job raising you with a partner of the same sex. I'm sure you would offended them or break their hearts! You are such a delusional mess I can't believe it! #TheEnd

Mike Bird #fundie patheos.com

Answering President Jed Bartlet on the Bible and Sexuality

I have been very gradually working my way through The West Wing, currently up to Season 2 and I just saw this epic scene where President Jed Bartlett lays into some conservative Christian radio show host for her views about homosexuality.

I’ve heard this line of argument several times, it latches onto something genuinely problematic which most Christians have a hard time explaining, so I thought it might be a good idea to offer my own response to President Jed Bartlet:

Dear President Bartlet,

Sir, I just saw your rather dramatic lambasting of Dr. Jenna Jacobs for her views on homosexuality. You speak with great passion and conviction on the subject and are rightly concerned that pious people will use religious texts as a license to treat LGBT persons with hatred and indifference. I sincerely appreciate that concern and I applaud it.

As a biblical scholar myself I have to confess that I was seriously impressed with your ability to recall biblical passages from the Pentateuch by memory. You are obviously a veteran of a very rigorous Sunday School program and you can recall Scripture with a precision that would leave many rabbis envious of your abilities. You obviously have spent a lot of time reading the Bible and you take it very seriously. I appreciate that too.

Let me say also that I don’t know Dr. Jacobs, I don’t listen to her show, I have no desire to defend her as I imagine that she and I probably do not see eye to eye on social issues and how to express a Christian view point about them. Still, I do wonder if you gave a Christian view of the Bible and sexuality a fair go, at least as a biblical theologian might express them.

The problem is that you are right, there are some very strange prohibitions in the Bible about combining fabrics together, planting crops side by side, laws pertaining to slavery, and stoning the less scrupulously observant of religion. The Old Testament contains things that are not only weird, but look callous and cruel even to those brought up with a deep reverence for the Bible.

Sir, I do not presume to lecture you on matters of religion, but it seems to me like you want to say in effect, “You believe what the Old Testament says about homosexuality, so then, do you believe all the crazy rules and regulations in the Old Testament too?” That is a good question and such a question requires an obvious “no,” since Christians themselves would concur that they are not bound to obey all the Old Testament regulations. But the matter I wish to press Mr. President is that you have overlooked how Christians read the Old Testament as Scripture and how they use Scripture to construct their own mode of moral discourse.

Please indulge me for a few short moments Mr. President in the hope that I can illuminate your understanding of the Bible and help you better appreciate how Christians use the Bible in their moral reasoning.

First, the Old Testament regulations were for a specific moment in Israel’s history and are not prescriptive for all time. The purpose of the law was to equip the Israelites to survive in the harsh context of the ancient near east. To tease that our further, the purpose of the law was to protract Israel’s capacity to worship God, to cocoon God’s purposes around Israel, to keep the Israelites separate from the peoples of Canaan, to teach Israel about human sin and divine holiness, and to point to the messianic deliverer whom God would send in the future. Many of these laws are not ideal (such as divorce as Jesus himself taught), other laws are a liberalization of ancient practices but still not particularly pleasant (like the treatment of slaves), many laws are related to the specific context of the ancient near east (like inter-tribal warfare), and several laws censure things that seem odd to us like consuming blood (because of its link to pagan worship). So, even from a Christian perspective, we have to say that Old Testament laws were a survival measure in a hostile environment, they were addressing cultures as they were rather than how they might be, they were incremental attempts to bring light to a world that was brutal and dark, and the laws were preparatory for something better rather than final. These laws might be God’s first word on how human should live before him, but they were certainly not the last word either.

Second, the Old Testament is strictly speaking not prescriptive for Christian ethics. That is not because the Old Testament is a bad thing that has been done away with, but because it is a good thing that has been fulfilled by Jesus Christ. I would suggest that the basis of Christian ethics is largely three things: (1) The example of Jesus and the apostles; (2) The teachings of Jesus and the apostles; and (3) Life in the Spirit. The Old Testament Law then is not the constitution for a Christian society, not the content of Christian ethics, nor the catalyst for Christian social reform. Instead, the Law is more like a consultant for Christian beliefs, embodying a form of wisdom on how to fear the Lord, how to walk in his ways, and how to love him. We are not bound to its letter, but we ignore its teachings to the peril our own spiritual ignorance.
Third, if the Old and New agree on one thing, it is this: the supremacy of love. Both Testaments agree that love of God and love of neighbour are the core concerns and truest teachings of Law. We read the commands: “Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength” (Deut 6:5) and similarly “love your neighbor as yourself” (Lev 19:18). This is precisely what Jesus himself argued according to the Evangelists where Jesus said: “’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” (Matt 22:37-40). Even the Apostle Paul, though often maligned for his views of women and homosexual behavior, said: “For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’” (Gal 5:14).

When it comes to the issue of sexuality and marriage, Christians should not rush to Leviticus or Deuteronomy searching for proof texts for their beliefs. The first thing to note is that Genesis teaches that God made men and women in his image, and that marriage is rooted in a sexual ecology of the complementarity of men and women oriented towards the creation of a family (Gen 1:26-28). What is more, this is something that Jesus affirmed (Mark 10:6-9). On top of that, there are prescriptions about homosexual acts outside Leviticus made by the Apostle Paul (Rom 1:26-27; 1 Cor 6:9; 1 Tim 1:10). And while these prescriptions are disputed – are they only about pederasty, an aggressive bi-sexuality, excessive lust, or limited to cultic prostitution – generally they are regarded by most scholars as censuring homoerotic behavior. Of course, if you think Jesus and Paul were just wrong and you care to disagree with them, that is fine, but please understand that that is not an attractive option for those of us who wish to affirm what our own tradition teaches on marriage and sexuality.

Mr. President, at the end of the day Christian ethics are based on love not law: love for God and love for our neighbors. Christians, within the precincts of their own consciences, cannot affirm behavior that they believe Scripture prohibits. The wisdom of our tradition is that sexuality is a gift from God, leading us to affirm celibacy in singleness and faithfulness in marriage. Yet because of the command to love their neighbours, you can expect Christians to always treat people, irrespective of gender, race, religion, and sexual orientation, with compassion and dignity, as we ourselves would want to be treated. If you wish to wag a finger at Christians for their hypocrisy, and I hope you do, citing texts from Leviticus is probably not the best way to do that. Much better is to accuse Christians of not keeping Jesus’ commands to love their gay neighbor, point out that they have not followed Jesus’ example to welcome those who polite society has rejected, and they have not embraced the lost for whom Jesus said he came to save! That is a word of rebuke Christians need to hear time and again.

That is my two cents on the matter Sir. I wish you all the best in the coming election season.

PS, watch out for that Jeff Haffley guy, he’s a sly old critter!

al #fundie patheos.com

[Fundy is asked if the death penalty for gays described in Leviticus is good]

Yes. Why do you think they had such a penalty? A free thinker should be able to tell me why.

John MacArthur #fundie patheos.com

[On if gay Christians go to Heaven]

Well, I don’t know if [the question is] for me, but no one is gay.

If you mean by that, that that’s some hardwiring… no one is gay. People commit adultery, they commit sins of homosexuality, they lie, they steal, they cheat.

That’s like saying, “You know, I keep robbing banks, but I’m a robber. I’m a bank robber. What am I gonna do? I’m a bank robber.”

That is not an excuse for what you do. Are there certain kind of impulses that lead people in that direction? Yes. But I think one of the really deadly aspects of this is to let people define themselves as gay.

They are not gay any more than an adulterer is hardwired to be forced by his own nature to commit adultery. Those are all behavioral sins that are condemned in scripture. God didn’t hardwire anybody in such a way that they are not responsible for certain behaviors.

And so we need to cancel that out of the sin list and welcome them into the Kingdom of God, because you can’t do anything else.

But I think we do no service to people who are caught in the vicious sins of homosexuality by letting them define themselves by that sin.

Bristol Palin #fundie patheos.com

NEW VIDEO: Planned Parenthood Dr. Jokes About Harvesting Intact Baby Brains

Just when you think the ghouls at Planned Parenthood can’t possibly get more twisted, they do.

In the latest video clip released by investigative journalist David Daleiden, a top Planned Parenthood abortionist is heard joking about trying to harvest a whole baby brain!

The Christian Post reports:

In footage from the video presented during an interview with Live Action President Lila Rose on TheBlaze TV, Daleiden shows the abortionist identified as Dr. Amna Dermish laughing off the brain joke.

“If there’s a request for fetal brain, they’re always wanting both hemispheres,” says Daleiden, posing as a an organ buyer off-camera in the video.

“Um, I haven’t been able to do that yet —” replies Dermish.
“Oh, to get the calvarium [portion of skull with brain]?” asks the buyer.
“Intact” states Dermish.
“Maybe next time,” quips the buyer.
“I know, right? We’ll just give you something to strive for!” says Dermish, laughing.

So sick! This is the precious brain of a LIVING baby!

Later in the video, the doctor goes on to describe how to manipulate the abortion to get an intact fetus, a practice that definitely violates doctor’s medical ethics and is most likely illegal.

The abortionist goes on in the video to discuss how to get intact organs by manipulating the abortion procedure so the unborn child enters the “breech” position.

She explains that the torso of the unborn baby is kept intact by grabbing the spine during the abortion and then removing it “in alignment.”

“Of those two 20-week cases last week, for example, what was the intactness of the specimen like?” asks the buyer.

“It was trunk intact. They’re usually — what I’ll do — if it’s a breech presentation, I’ll remove the extremities first— the lower extremities — and then go for the spine and sort of break it down that way … if it’s a breech presentation,” explains Dermish.

You can watch David’s whole interview and his latest footage HERE:

I interviewed my friend, David Daleiden, about his important work exposing Planned Parenthood’s baby body parts trade on…

Posted by Lila Rose on Monday, October 5, 2015

The fact that we are still funding Planned Parenthood as they openly butcher babies, with a smile and a laugh, is completely shameful. When is Washington going to stop burying their heads in the sand, and start demanding justice for these precious babies?

Bristol Palin #fundie patheos.com

Did Planned Parenthood Just Admit They Were Selling Baby Parts for Profit?

Since investigative journalist exposed Planned Parenthood’s practice of selling the body parts of aborted babies, Planned Parenthood has been denying that they have done anything wrong. Despite hours and hours of footage showing their doctors and staff haggling over the price of baby parts, they continually say they were not selling anything.

However, this week Planned Parenthood made its first major move that shows that they have known their actions were super sketchy all along.

Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards announced that they will no longer be collecting money for the baby parts they “donate” to medical procurement labs.

Bre Payton at The Federalist comments:

Despite its previous claims of innocence, Planned Parenthood’s announcement today suggests that the organization knew its activities were almost certainly illegal.

When the shocking videos of Planned Parenthood were first released, the taxpayer-funded abortion mill said it only accepted reimbursement for the cost of harvesting and shipping aborted baby body parts. According to the group, accepting mere reimbursement, rather than profiting from the practice, is allowed by law. The undercover videos, however, showed multiple senior Planned Parenthood staff haggling over the prices they would accept in exchange for aborted baby body parts. In one video, one Planned Parenthood executive said she needed a good price for baby body parts because, “I need a Lamborghini.”

David Daleiden, the investigative journalist at the Center for Medical Progress (CMP) who lead the undercover video campaign, agrees that Planned Parenthood’s latest statements signal an admission of guilt.

“If the money Planned Parenthood has been receiving for baby body parts were truly legitimate ‘reimbursement,’ why cancel it?” Daleiden asked. “This proves what CMP has been saying all along—Planned Parenthood incurs no actual costs, and the payments for harvested fetal parts have always been an extra profit margin.”

Daleiden also noted that there’s no way to monitor how, or even if, Planned Parenthood plans to enforce its new policy.

“Without releasing the text of the alleged new ‘policy’ and the exact model from the their Washington affiliate, Planned Parenthood’s stunt today tells us nothing,” Daleiden said.

It is clear that an organization that devotes so many of their resources to the murder of innocent children is not to be trusted. So it is not surprising to me that the truth is starting to come out by their own actions that they were in fact selling these baby parts.

The truth will always come out. Darkness cannot hide the light forever.

CruisingTroll #fundie patheos.com

So, the notion that there can't be any link between race and intelligence is about as anti-scientific as one can get. But hey, once they were willing to throw up that wall, then moving to the current gender madness was almost inevitable.

btw, I think one reason why the science community was so quick and willing to go along to with the "disfavoring" of research on race and intelligence isn't even a case of anti-intellectualism OR knuckling under to the attacks of "anti-racists." No, I think it was fundamentally more personal than that. For scientists and most within the "science community", intelligence is a core component of personal worth. It is an oft noted flaw among scientists, being jerks to the "less intelligent" simply because they're less intelligent. They, understandably, didn't want to consciously be party to something that would potentially cast vast swaths of humanity as "inferior." For most secular, hard core materialist scientists, it was even more difficult, because engaging the question of "human value" is mighty difficult when there is no soul of infinite worth. Best to avoid the matter entirely, which also means enforcing the avoidance upon others. The distinction between generalizations of race based on statistical aggregations versus the discrete characteristics of a single individual is cold comfort to those who with any awareness of history.

After all, the eugenics movement was "based in science."

This is why almost invariably the first and most frequent line of attack that the anti-intellectuals on the Left take against science that raises uncomfortable questions about humans and human nature is "you're attempting to dehumanize them, to denigrate them, etc". They take that line because that's what the possible conclusions say to THEM. Less intelligent = less of a person. Mentally ill (transgender) = less of a person. They KNOW this is the "logic" of their worldview, because they'll ardently articulate it when it comes to aborting a child with Down's Syndrome or some other birth defect. Combine that with their having gone all in on collectivism, and they recoil at the implications of research that would indicate any of their "favored" groups is flawed. This is why you'll see plenty of research, both real science and more commonly pseudo-science, into the collective flaws of men (toxic masculinity, anyone?) or "whites" or Christians, but rarely other groups.

For society, the continued rejection of reality is going to come at a high cost. For Christians, the foundation of scientific inquiry should be the fact that God created it all, and that each human soul is of infinite value.

Marc #fundie patheos.com

I’d first love to correct several blatant misreadings of Scripture, not for the sake of the Wannabe Gay Marriage Debate, but for the sake of Scripture, which deserves better.

1. “Jesus never uttered a word about same-sex relationships.”

True. Nor did he utter a word about rape. Or genocide. Or running a crystal meth lab. Or suicide. Or pedophilia. To assume a man’s approval of everything he doesn’t mention is silliness to the highest degree.

2. “The original language of the N.T. actually refers to male prostitution, molestation, or promiscuity, not committed same-sex relationships.”

Well, I guess we can just look at the New Testament for this one:

“Claiming to be wise, they became fools; and they exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling a mortal human being or birds or four-footed animals or reptiles. Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the degrading of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. For this reason God gave them up to degrading passions. Their women exchanged natural intercourse for unnatural, and in the same way also the men, giving up natural intercourse with women, were consumed with passion for one another. Men committed shameless acts with men and received in their own persons the due penalty for their error.”

Now it’s true that Paul wasn’t speaking of the committed homosexual relationships we speak of today, primarily because the idea of a homosexual relationship would have made no sense to the Apostle. That a man is defined as a homosexual, heterosexual or bisexual is a modern concept. For the Ancient World, homosexuality was an act performed, not a life lived, and certainly not the summative feature of your being. The idea of two men proclaiming “We are homosexuals, and we are in a committed relationship,” would have been utterly foreign to Paul.

Unfortunately, Paul’s claims cannot be dismissed on that basis, as the Apostle makes abundantly clear that homosexual acts are contrary to the natural law. Not homosexuality, but homosexual acts: “Men committed shameless acts with men and received in their own persons the due penalty for their error.”

To explain what he’s talking about, we must understand his premise: Humans are meant to be happy. Good actions will ultimately make human beings happy, bad actions won’t. If an action is seen to be detrimental to the human person — that is, if it ultimately leads to unhappiness — then that action can be defined as contrary to our nature, and thus sinful.

This is what Paul refers to when he speaks of an act being “unnatural.” He does not use the modern sense of the word, which seems to define the “natural” as “that which has been observed to take place in the Jungle.” He uses the word “natural” in the philosophical sense, that which is aligned with human nature — that which makes humans happy.

(And to be clear, this idea takes for granted that many of the acts we spend our lives pretending make us happy do not. We might say that binge eating makes us happy, but ultimately it won’t — it brings pleasure, but it is detrimental to the human person. A man who sleeps around and must satisfy his every urge might say that he is “happy” with his life, but in reality he has made his “happiness” dependent upon having his urges satisfied. He is not happy in and of himself. So to the claim that drugs make us happy. They do not. They bring us pleasure, and they make our happiness dependent on them — again, we are not happy in and of ourselves.)

So when Paul says that men and women committed “unnatural” homosexual acts and “received in their own persons the due penalty for their error,” his claim is quite simple. The punishment for a wrong act is not God all up and smiting you from the sky. The punishment is naturally received within the human person. The homosexual act works against a human being’s natural end of happiness, and thus the human suffers for it. It’d be interesting to know if Paul was aware of what we are aware of today, that those performing homosexual acts are at greater risk for unhappiness, a risk that has not been directly associated with intolerance or hatred.

If what I say is true, that Paul is claiming that the homosexual act itself is contrary to the natural law, it does not seem reasonable claim to make, that he would have spoken differently were that act contained in a committed relationship.

But our graphic-maker covers his tracks on this one, by saying:

3. “Paul may have spoken against homosexuality, but he also said that women should be silent and never assume authority over a man.”

I would simply note the difference in quality with which these different words of Paul were made. In the former, which we have just discussed, Paul appears to be pointing out an act that is inherently detrimental to the human person. This is not something subject to change-over-time or an evolution of understanding or modern reinterpretation. In the latter, the author is referencing two different passages. The first is from Paul’s letter to the Ephesians:

“Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

What Paul is saying is clear: Wives submit to your husbands, husbands offer up your life and die for your wives, as Christ did for the Church. I understand that this rings harsh and alien in the secular ear — that authority within a marriage is not a 50/50 split, but the meeting of two distinct, gender-specific, and equally difficult duties — but I cannot apologize for it, other than to say that the secular world is wrong about marriage.

As to women remaining silent:

Women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the law says.

This passage is subject to change over time, as it is contained within Paul’s instruction on public worship which similarly — though not in substance — changed over time. This might be a problem to the Literalist Christian, but not to the Catholic, who with Pope Benedict can assert that the Paul’s passage must “be relativized.” Again, this is not the case with Paul’s assertion that homosexual acts are inherently detrimental to the human person.

4. “The Bible defines marriage as One Man Many Women, One Man Many Wives and Concubines, A Rapist and His Victim, and a Conquering Solider and a Female Prisoner of War.”

This is a prime example of the secular mind putting way more faith and trust in the Bible than the Christian is ever called to. The Bible is a library of history, storytelling, poetry, letters, and biographies: Something appearing in the Bible does not indicate that God endorses that practice. The only practices endorsed by God are — wait for it — those which we are told are endorsed by God.

More importantly, we need to look at the context. The Old Testament is fulfilled by the New. From Matthew 19:

Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?” “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

“Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?”

Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning.”

Jesus says that it is for the very reason of maleness and femaleness that “the two will become one flesh.” He then says that the marriage rites established by Moses — which include divorce, polygamy, concubinage, etc. — were not condoned by God, but allowed for a time because of the hardness of their hearts, a time that Christ announces is over. Welcome to now. To ignore this and imply that because all sorts of immoral craziness happens in the Old Testament gay marriage should be considered a-ok, well, it’s a stretch.

Alright, those are the main ones. Now allow me to mention the real problem.

No one is claiming that because homosexuality is sinful, homosexual marriage shouldn’t exist. If marriage was an institution designated for the sinless there wouldn’t be marriages at all, for we have all sinned and fallen short. This graphic exemplifies a terrifying insistence within this “debate” — to argue on the most idiotic level possible. Ignoring the question of whether marriage is a definite Thing with a raison d’etre or a blank for us to fill, we waste our time with Scripture we don’t bother to understand, brushing the world and our intellects with varying shades of stupid.

Bristol Palin #fundie patheos.com

GRAPHIC: “He Had a Beating Heart” – Planned Parenthood Harvests Brain of Child

image

In the 7th video released by investigative journalists from The Center for Medical Progress, Planned Parenthood officials admit to doing “custom abortions to get a superior product.” What does this actually mean? They are willing to alter their abortion procedures (which is illegal, by the way) so that they can obtain baby brains intact, and then sell them for a steep price.

It is absolutely disgusting!!

The Center for Medical Progress describes their video footage:

In this new video, which some people are calling the most disturbing yet, former harvesting technician Holly O’Donnell describes how the heart of a late-term baby boy at Planned Parenthood’s mega-clinic in San Jose, CA started beating again after her supervisor tapped on it. Holly was then told to cut through the baby’s face to get his brain.

CMP investigators learned during the 2.5-year-long Human Capital study that born-alive infants are a shockingly common phenomenon in the abortion industry. It is made more common when fetal organs are being harvested because doctors must not poison the baby, yet also extract him or her as intact as possible—intact, an intact and live delivery is the outrageous “best case scenario” for organ harvesting.

Here is the new video:

Human Capital - Episode 3: Planned Parenthood's Custom Abortions for Superior Product

How can someone look into the precious face of a murdered baby and only see dollar signs? How can they possibly bring themselves to cut that baby’s face open to retrieve brains? It is mind-boggling to me!

And yet it is happening all the time in Planned Parenthood clinics.

Please share this latest video and continue demanding that this evil be stopped! We can’t be silent until these precious babies are seen for what they actually are – human beings with infinite worth and dignity.

Mr. Garrett #sexist patheos.com

[Excerpt from a discrimination complaint filed by the ACLU]

When M.S. asked Mr. Garrett why he was denying her daughter access to a valid prescribed medication, he told her that he was refusing to fill the prescription because of his personal beliefs. When M.S. asked for clarification, Mr. Garrett explained in a judgmental tone that he was refusing to fill the prescription because he had a “pretty good idea” for what purpose the medication would be used. Mr. Garrett’s statements left M.S. with the sound belief that he was refusing to fill M.S.’s daughter’s prescription because he believed the prescription would be used for M.S.’s daughter’s reproductive healthcare.

Michael Pearl #fundie patheos.com

[From the first chapter of Created To Need A Help Meet by Michael Pearl. The infamous story everyone keeps referring to…]

My immediate goal in marriage was to make up for all those sexually frustrated years—the sooner the better. A friend of mine that married two years before I did had bragged that he was able to ‘know’ his bride five times on their wedding night. He was a puny fellow, so I had no doubt I would beat his brag, but the truth is, three times is all I could muster, and just barely. I quickly realized a single man’s concept of marriage was a bit different than the real thing. After all, it was midnight before we got to our room, and we were up at six headed to the Gulf Coast where we would honeymoon for a few days in a cottage on the beach.
It was a long day’s drive. We arrived at the cottage well after dark. We had brought all the gear for fishing and crabbing, as well as the groceries for her to prepare our meals. That way we could save a lot of money and be able to stay longer in the cabin. We dug all of the gear out of the station wagon and placed it in the cabin. Deb fixed us a big supper, after which I tried to break my record. One time and I was asleep. I woke in the middle of the night and remembered that crabs sometimes run along the beach, so I work Deb and excitedly said, “Let’s go crabbing!”
My new Mrs. complained about me not giving her enough time to find her tennis shoes. They were still packed somewhere and I was raring to go. Anyway I had seen her going barefoot many times. As we scurried along the beach she complained about not having a flashlight. I was using it up ahead to scout the way and chase crabs. I heard her say something about shells hurting her feet. For the next hour or two I ran along the seashore and she dragged along behind carrying my crab sack. I put out some of those little round traps with bait in them and we eventually got about six or eight of the little pinching critters—not enough for a meal.
That was my first time to ever go crabbing and I was having a ball. What more could a fellow ask for?
A cottage on the beach, a hot wife, plenty of crabs…this was living! We made it back to the cottage where we grabbed a couple of hours of sleep before I woke up hungry and had to make love to a woman half asleep. She was willing but not very active.
Afterward she got up and fixed us a fine breakfast. Great cook. Her mother taught her well. She wanted to go back to sleep but I talked her into going out for more crabs. By mid-afternoon we had a sack full of crabs and headed back to the cottage. Wow, was I tired. I told her I would just take a little nap while she prepared supper. I don’t know how long I slept but I awoke to her screeching and jumping about with crabs crawling all over the cabin. The silly girl had left the sack open when she was trying to get the first crab in the huge boiling kettle. I sat up in bed and offered some constructive advice and she had a personality change right there in front of me, and us not yet married 48 hours. Who could have imagined a female could carry on in such a crazy manner? I tried to calm her down but she just stomped off, leaving the French fries turning black in the hot smoking oil and the crabs crawling. I yelled at her retreating form, “I don’t need to hunt crabs; I married one!” Somehow that one remark has hung around our marriage like a ticked-off ghost. It seemed appropriate at the time.
To her credit she did come back and finish cooking. After we ate I was ready for some more sex, but she just wanted to sleep. I had read in a marriage book how women always have excuses, like being sleepy, having a headache, etc. There was a great sense of satisfaction when I was so completely able to change her mind; it wasn’t that difficult. She is wired right. It made me sleepy so I dozed off again. I was just dropping off when I heard the crash. It came from the bathroom. She looked dead l\ying there all twisted up in a weird position half in half out of the shower. The curtain and the rod lay flung out on the floor around her and water was spraying everywhere. It was one scary moment – my new bride dead on our honeymoon. I quickly turned off the water and bent to cradle her in my arms. I gently shook her while examining her injured forehead, which was quickly swelling and turning blue, “What’s wrong honey? Are you sick?”
After she opened her eyes it took her a minute to focus and then her expression changed. It was a mixture of pity and anger, although her voice was like a deep sigh as she whispered, “You really don’t know do you?” Man, it sounded like she was accusing me or something! Since she was hurt I let her have her say and boy, she laid it on.
She sat up, pulling herself away from me, turning where she could look me square in the face. The gist of what she said was something along these lines: “In the last 48 hours I haven’t slept more than two hours undisturbed. My feet have 20 or more tiny holes in them because you wouldn’t let me take an extra five minutes to unpack my tennis shoes. My shoulder is sore from trying to carry thirty pounds of crabs for hours (they didn’t weight that much.) My hand is burned from trying to stuff a fighting crab into a kettle of boiling water, which seems very much like torturing the poor thing, AND, all the while you lay in a state of repose. Due to lack of sleep and sun, my eyes feel like they are full of sand. I have had little to eat. I am female, for crying out loud. I just want to sleep without you pawing on me. Besides, I have body parts I didn’t even know existed until now and they are killing me….so what is wrong with me??? I’m the weaker vessel, remember? It’s in the Bible, chapter one, verse one….or somewhere.”
Strange creatures, these females. My brother never acted like that when we traveled together holding evangelistic services. “Well, she will get adjusted.” I thought.

Samuel James #fundie patheos.com

[An article on what to and not to do when a Christian members of your church do something incredibly awful and or stupid.]

6.) Don’t ever, ever, ever, EVER even passively, suggestively, or indirectly legitimize or rationalize bitterness and suspicion towards the church. If someone says to you, “This is why I don’t go to church,” they might think they’re telling the truth, but they’re not. They don’t love the church because they don’t love Jesus. Saying, “Yes, you have a point, church can be so frustrating” feels like empathy, but it’s not. It’s self-preserveration at the cost of slandering Christ’s body.

theot58 #fundie patheos.com

Your reasoning is silly. You want to me to show evidence that you cannot get order from chaos without an intelligent designer - are you nuts. That it self evident

The onus of proof is on evolutionists who assert that from chaos, order can emerge by the simple application of energy. This is counter to common sense and observation. This is what needs to proven.
Why don't you give it a go?

Consider just a small number of fundamental scientific problems with Darwinian/Macro evolution

1) Where did the information come from to build the DNA molecule?
- it contains over 4 Gigabits of programing data; we have never observed natural forces creating programming data
- a building is proof of a builder, a program is proof of a programmer, a design is proof of a designer

2) How did genders "evolve" from asexual organisms?
- Consider some of the challenges, have a look at this video http://youtu.be/Ab1VWQEnnwM

3) How do you explain symbiotic relationships while holding to gradual "evolution"?
- eg The bees need the flowers, the flowers need the bees - they both MUST exist togeter, how could this occur slowly or gradually
- What came first the Chicken or the egg?

4) Where are all the myriad of transition fossils that Darwin predicted?
- They were missing then and they are missing now.
- How can the Cambrian explosion of millions of fully formed organism appearing abrupty be explained by Evolution?

5) Which "evolved" first, the vagina or the penis?
- how did one "evolve" from the other?

Anne Kennedy #sexist patheos.com

[[Context; a post that's more or less a continuation of her response to Jory Micah's church]]

So, I very meanly played to my base yesterday (I love y’all) which necessarily won me a couple of comments from them that are already haters. These can be summed up under ‘Who Are You’ which is almost as good as ‘I Can’t Even.’ I love modern discourse so much. As anyone will tell you, I wander around my house muttering, ‘I can’t even’ just for the way it rolls off the tongue. It’s like the perfect expression.
But, of course, one mean blog post about Jory Micah does not our substantial problems solve.

Thing is, Ms. Micah isn’t feeling anything that isn’t there. When she feels the call to be a pastor and then goes to the church and demands entrance, she’s only doing what she’s been brought up to do. As I’ve said more than once, when you educate all the women, you do have to decide what on earth to do with them. Are there any places that you don’t want them to be? Because you have basically opened all the doors wide, and it feels sort of weird when they don’t walk all the way through. Except that some denominations don’t want them to, and have real theological reasons for preferring they did not.

There are three responses to this problem. The first is to shout rather too loudly that it was a mistake to educate them and that they should turn right round and get back in the kitchen. And, I won’t lie, when I hear the word ‘complementary’ that’s vision that swims before my eyes. I’m going to call this the Duggar Approach to women in the church. The women are educated for the fate that awaits them. You cope with the problem by returning to a bygone era. Problem solved.
The other solution is to decide you just don’t care any more. Let the women in but then passive aggressively blame them when things go wrong. I really think this actually happens in the ‘egalitarian’ world sometimes but really, I’m seeing it everywhere. I read a whole lot of blog posts by Jori Micah yesterday and I found them utterly tragic. I’ve looked in from the outside on marriages like hers. And all the Shouting about it how wonderful it is when the man finally gives up and lets the woman ‘lead’ isn’t loud enough for me to miss the mute, hangdog look of a husband who has to obey his wife, who decides, for whatever reason, that he has no other choice. (Incidentally, she must welcome this examination because she’s blogging about it. Public writing=public response.)Bring that into the church and you find the true men drift quietly away. Essentially, the church gives up being the church.

The third response is where most evangelical women probably find themselves. And that’s that every one agrees that the woman shouldn’t preach the sermon. But then, because OMW this is such a terrifying topic and Someone is definitely going to be triggered either way, we will Never Speak of This For Real. The men nod kindly at the women, but there’s fear at the back of the eyes. This fear occasionally manifests itself in a very subtle, almost imperceptible patronizing friendliness. Are the women going to rise up? I mean, gosh, we educated them. They obviously have gifts.

Some of them are even pretty coherent. But, ugh, you know, if you let the coherent one do something, like teach someone something (anyone) she could take it and run and before you know it we have Jory Micah. So, let us all just smile and nod and hope for the best.

But also, maybe if we don’t make eye contact with the women nothing bad will happen.
I don’t have a name for this, but ‘complementary’ isn’t what comes to mind. Other words like, Can We Talk About It, do. The thing is, the women in scenario number three are educated and work in the world. They have their lives together and can be super interesting to talk to. Some of them are out there writing interesting books.

These women are educating their daughters. And their husbands are neither skirting around the margins saying ‘yes ma’am,’ and, ‘what do you want me to do for you today?’ but they’re not Jim Bob Duggar either. They’re just sort of ordinary people who talk to each other like humans.

The woman, in this picture, and this is so so so so important to me, doesn’t Ray Romano the man. She doesn’t put him down. She doesn’t think he’s a dummy. She doesn’t belittle him. When he fails, hilarity does not ensue. She treats him like a person. And this is good because he is not then bitter and angry at her, nor patronizing.

What does the Ray Romano marriage look like? You see it everywhere. These women are the saving stay at home wives who just have to put up with it all as best they can because of all the stupid stupid stupid dummy men. This isn’t ‘complementary’ either. The power is centered on the women. When it comes into the church, the man climbs shakily into the pulpit to face down a phalanx of ladies who, if he doesn’t preach what they want him to, will find he probably doesn’t have a job any more. If he is obedient to them, they cover his derrière in all his horrendous stupid mistakes. But this, the Ray Romano Model, is very often called ‘traditional.’

Honestly, I hate it more than the Duggar Model. Mostly because everyone is saying one thing and doing another.

As you can see, it is kind of a mess. In the places where the conversation is being had, many ordinary Christians recoil from the outcome. In the places where the conversation isn’t had, liberalism creeps in. In the places where the conversation is nodded to in a friendly way, but isn’t full throated, women and men who have sorted out their lives at home find themselves disoriented in the pew. They know what they believe, but they are not totally comfortable with life in the church.

This is too long, so tomorrow I’m going to talk about the problem of Showing the Woman Her Place and the even more icky issue of Tone. If you’re mad at me, leave an angry comment. I’m feeling pretty cheerful and I’m putting everything up.

Anne Kennedy #fundie patheos.com

(=First of a two part post/rant about Glennon Doyle Melton, a Christian blogger/author who came out as a lesbian and married a woman=)

I mentioned in our podcast yesterday the tragic downfall of Glennon Doyle Melton. I would like to point out a few obvious home truths. Incidentally, of course it would be nice to think nuanced and fascinating thoughts, to grasp at difficult insights that have not been articulated by others, to, in short, be Novel. But this point in Christian history doesn’t seem to be calling for that sort of thinking. We seem to be needing to go back to the most basic point, the expression of the most essential truths. And the most essential of all of them is...

What is love?

This foundation of Christian doctrine has been so muddled and twisted, squandered really, by the modern Westerner, that we have to keep going back to the very beginning point of Christian Faith in order to answer this tragic confusion.

So Glennon, like so many, got married, had some children, and found herself in the usual way of coping with a too difficult life, a broken relationship with herself, and a cheating husband. In the midst of this, she turned out to be a top notch writer and so wrote her way through her difficulties and troubles. Here she has my complete sympathy. I am sitting here at this very minute in desperate pursuit of mental health through writing. Writing is my life line. If I don’t write every day, I become unhinged. And gosh, isn’t it nice if people read your writing? Everyone has been reading Glennon. That I haven’t is my own fault. I need to get out more and read more. I’ve read a few of her blog posts, though, and they are breezy, brilliant. The writing is what you Want when you click on the Internet.

But good writing does not a theologian nor a Christian make. Any one of us can put ourselves out there but the church–the people who know and love God and his Son Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit of whatever denomination and background–have a duty, an obligation, to articulate the gospel clearly and repudiate those who call themselves Christian but do not adhere to basic Christian doctrine. For the sake of Glennon herself, because she has claimed the name of Christ, I find I must say no to her new way of life.

Let’s just quickly look at what she says about love, both for herself, and more troublingly, for her children. She writes, “I want you to grow so comfortable in your own being, your own skin, your own knowing – that you become more interested in your own joy and freedom and integrity than in what others think about you. That you remember that you only live once, that this is not a dress rehearsal and so you must BE who you are. I want you to refuse to betray yourself. Not just for you. For ALL OF US. Because what the world needs — in order to grow, in order to relax, in order to find peace, in order to become brave — is to watch one woman at a time live her truth without asking for permission or offering explanation.”

And about her children, “They have the love and support of their dad, me, their grandparents, their aunts and uncles, their church, their teachers, their friends’ families –all of whom have fallen as hard for Abby as they have. They’re lucky kids, to be surrounded by so much love. We have family dinners together – all six of us — and Abby cooks. (She is an AMAZING chef because Jesus loves me). We go to the kids’ school parties together. We are a modern, beautiful family. Our children are loved. So loved. And because of all of that love, they are brave.”

You can find the longer post on her Facebook page.

Let me begin by saying that throwing over your broken marriage to join with another woman isn’t actually brave any more. It’s one of the easiest choices on the table. It may not feel easy in the moment, but what you are doing is embracing a copy of yourself, and you are doing it with the culture’s complete approbation. Bravery is when you do something difficult that ought to be done but you don’t want to do it, but you do it against your desires, for the sake of another. The choice of Glennon to be with a woman is the choice to go with self expression and the love of the self over the love of another and of God.

And that’s the confusion, isn’t it? It’s everywhere. In Christianity you are called to die to yourself, to die to the very essential nature of who you are which has been so corrupted and marred by sin that it is irrevocably bound to eternal death. This is the state of the human person. Not a single human person escapes the sentence of death that came when we chose to love ourselves rather than the Other, that is God. And however painful it is to face, no one gets a pass on this sentence. We all go down the grave one by one, dust to dust, because we idolatrously chose to love ourselves rather than our Creator.

No amount of embracing the self will cure the ills of the soul. No Amount. There is nothing you can do to love yourself enough to rescue your soul from death. You can’t. There is no human solution to the death dealing cavern that separates us from God.

That is why God himself had to cross over that cavern by himself. He had to come and absorb our sin and our rejection of him in himself. That is the cross. He took our catastrophic and poisonous self love onto himself and died the death we should have died.

When we cling to him, the death we endure, though it feels very great, is actually very small. Still, it is not easy to say no to the self, to put to death that essential poisoned self. It can’t happen without God himself carrying you through to eternity.

And I really hate to say it, but this is going to have to be part one, because I have somewhere to be. But I will pick up right here tomorrow, and will probably have another part after that. I hope you who know and love Jesus will pray for Glennon and her children and her husband and her new person and plead with God to enlighten the eyes of her heart that she might finally see him for who he is. See you tomorrow!

See Noevo #fundie patheos.com

See Noevo: “Thou Shalt Not Be Gay” No. More like ‘A man shalt not have sex with another man, nor a woman with another woman.’ (cf. Rom 1:26-27)

HudBud: I don't know what's more mind blowing, the fact you got the verses mixed up or that it warranted likes.

See Noevo: "I don't know what's more mind blowing..." Poor guy. You must have blowing on your mind.

Hakeem Muhammad #fundie patheos.com

Moreover, Imam Hamza Yusuf’s analysis obfuscates the manner in which the very judicial system discriminates against non-white ways of being in the world even in the manifestation of so-called anti-discrimination laws. Kenneth Nunn writes,”The very form that legal reasoning and legal analysis takes affirms white Eurocentric culture.”

Nunn argues that the law inherently portrays subjective, arational, intuitive thought as inferior and yet these ways of knowing are inherent in African and Native American culture. Thus, the judicial system of America is replete with Eurocentric ways of knowing which need to be addressed and combated instead of praised.

Anne Kennedy #fundie patheos.com

Matt most kindly sent me something this morning to wake up. I’ll have to thank him later. If you have theological nerves of steel, you can go read all about how Ms. Jory Micah, with her ‘husband by her side’ is going to be packing up and moving to start a church. Here’s a taste of what you can expect if you decide to join up with them.

"God gave me the name, “The Table.” It will be a ministry that will start in our small apartment somewhere in the heart of the city, and we will invite whoever God sends our way. Luke and I feel that Jesus calls Christians to reach out especially to the marginalized, broken, left out, poor, and oppressed of society. So practically speaking, Luke and I look forward to inviting minorities, homeless people, college students away from their homes, lgbtq people who have been abandoned by their families, immigrants, single moms, widows, refugees, and really anyone who is hungry for food, conversation, and love, to our table once a week. We will invite Jesus each week to be our host. We think He will show up. We think this is exactly the sort of “church” Jesus hangs out in. Anyone and everyone is invited to Jesus’ table. The worst of the worst sinners are invited to sit among those who seem to understand how to walk out a holy life better than others. No one has to repent to sit at Jesus’ table. Everyone can come, sit, eat, drink, belong, and be loved, just as they are."

How will this be, given that it won’t have any marks of the Church? How will this incredible work be accomplished?

"You see, it is at Jesus’ table that each of us is transformed. As we sit with Him, and one another, love changes us from the inside out, and something happens. We find freedom. We find renewal. We find redemption. We find resurrection. We find God."

Wow. That’s so great. Sign me up. A repentance free church where we basically all just come together for dinner and a chat about our thoughts and feelings about God. Where, in the course of all the chatting and all the feelings, God affirms our deepest longings and hopes and dreams and destiny, and then a beautiful shiny purplish unicorn comes trotting through the door and kisses each lost soul on the forehead and says, ‘Ms. Jory Micah, you shall go to the ball.’

See, if you made it through her whole post, you would have discovered that this “church” (with all the scare quotes I can muster from every corner) is not about the old passé stuff that all those other boring churches are about–Jesus, Christianity, the gospel. It’s about Ms. Micah feeling left out of the church for her whole life. It’s about her sense of call to be a minister, about her having no official affirmation of that call. It’s about her disappointment and frustration. She describes herself as a ‘sad puppy’ looking for a church that will really feel like home. Everywhere she goes she just doesn’t really fit.

I initially felt really sad as I read about how homeless and unrooted she is. But then I began to attend to the reasons she and her husband just don’t "fit in." Reasons like, "In other words, Luke and I are dedicated to listening to the stories of the powerless, in a world that silences and oppresses those who are poor, voiceless, marginalized, excluded, and loveless."

And, "Our hearts burn for social justice in both the Church and in society."

You know, because all the dumb rubes sitting in regular pews on Sunday don’t care about the powerless, the marginalized, the poor. The church has literally never, in two thousand years, thought of those people. The church, see, was all confused, and thought it was just about the Beautiful and the Awesome and the Rich. Color me dubious. I’ve been to a lot of churches and I have yet to meet these jerks who care nothing for Other People.

Let’s read a little further. In all the care and anxiety for the downtrodden, we find this, "We have always searched for ways to combine our passions, but we have struggled to find a church home in which we feel our unique combination of gifts are seen and appreciated."

And this delightful gem, "Perhaps that is why we have such a heart for those who feel left out: because we know what it is like to have much to offer the Church and world, but to go unnoticed by those with influence and power."

And there we have it. Ms. Micah is the one who feels herself to be persecuted. She is the "marginalized." This is really all about her.

So, just to refresh ourselves so we know where we are. Jory Micah has, from the age of 13, known herself to be called to be a minister in the church. Jesus told her this and there is no moving her off this important divine revelation. She’s received some kind of theological education. She’s found herself a husband who will properly submit to her. And yet Still there is no church body that will affirm her incredible awesome call. So finally, having had enough, she’s going to start one herself, one that won’t even really be called a church…except that it Very Much Will, and it will be better than all those other stupid churches out there that haven’t recognized her great heart and great gifts.

So, I do have some real sympathy for Ms. Micah.
Skirting away from my great huge desire to say, "bless her heart," I want to remind Jory that, most tragically, the church is not about her. It’s not about any of us. None of us have the right to patter in an demand recognition and jobs because of how fantastic we are. Not a single person in church gets to be the center of it all and have accolades and triumphs. That’s not what it’s for.

The church, shockingly, is about Jesus. And the thing he cares most about is people, ordinary people, coming to hear about his saving work on the cross. The church is about Jesus. He doesn’t just come ‘hang out’ there. He doesn’t just sort of sit back and bless whatever we feel like doing. The church is his bride. It is the body of people he gathers and rescues from death to keep safe with him forever. It belongs to him, and so it has to listen to him and do whatever he says. Even the things he says In The Bible.

I must say, I’m sort of encouraged that somehow Ms. Micah has run up against a brick wall in her calling to be a "pastor." I have to wonder why she hasn’t yet checked out the Episcopal church, cough, although I wouldn’t wish having to cope with her on mine own enemy. She sounds deeply troubled and power hungry–the two things from which all sane church leadership runs screaming away.

And one final thing (although, don’t worry, there is a very high chance I will be saying more about this tomorrow) in the spirit of casting my bread upon the waters. Ms. Micah doesn’t have time for repentance and the traditional marks of the church in her headlong rush to fashion the church into the likeness of herself, but she might be surprised to find that Jesus himself, that wondrous man, could be enough for her when all other men have failed. He’s not going to congratulate her for being wonderful, but he can remove the incredibly burdensome trial of her ego, he can forgive her sin and show her the way of life. It is very hard to take the narrow, the unacclaimed way, the unknown way, the bitter way of the loss of the self that leads to eternal life. I hope you’ll join me in praying for her, and her husband, and the people they happen to meet, that God will break in and surprise them with the goodness of his Son.

Samuel James #fundie patheos.com

[From a "article" about how Christians should be debating with their Atheist friends]

3) Only supernatural theism provides a rational justification of scientific work.

The wording of this point is very important. If we left out the word “rational,” then the statement would actually be false and quite easy to shoot down. You don’t need supernatural theism to be curious, or to want to explore the natural world. But you do need supernatural theism to have a rational justification of science. What does the word rational mean there? It means that scientific inquiry done on the assumption that there is no higher intelligence than evolved human intelligence is making a value judgment that it has no right to make.

Why is knowledge better than ignorance? The atheist would respond that ignorance has less survival value than truth; after all, if you believe wrong things or do not know enough about your environment, you’re less likely to survive and flourish. But this explanation only applies to a very small amount of scientific knowledge. There is little survival value in knowing, for example, the complicated workings of time–space theory, or the genus of certain insects, or the distance of Jupiter from Mars. All of these facts are pursued by scientists as being intrinsically valuable, yet they offer very little information that can help guarantee a species’ continued existence on the planet.

The real explanation is that scientists pursue these facts because there is intrinsic value in knowing what is true about the world, regardless of how much help it gives us. Human beings believe that knowing is better than ignorance because they believe that truth is better than falsity, and light is better than darkness. But where does such a conclusion come from? It does not come from scientific principles. Science itself offers no self-evident account for why it should be pursued. You cannot study science hard enough to understand why you should study science at all. To study science presupposes a valuing of truth that must be experienced outside of scientific study. It is only rational to pursue scientific knowledge that doesn’t offer immediate survival value if there is some external, transcendent value in knowing truth. Theism offers an explanation for why knowing truth is valuable. Scientific atheism does not.

4) Only supernatural theism gives us assurance that real scientific knowledge is possible.

Philosopher Alvin Plantinga is famous for articulating what he calls the “evolutionary argument against naturalism.” The argument is
Alvin Plantinga

Alvin Plantinga

complicated in detail but simple in premise. Plantinga begins by putting two facts alongside each other that nearly all atheists agree on. First, the theory of evolution is true, and humans have descended from lower life forms over time. Secondly, humans are rational beings in a higher degree and superior way to lesser evolved creatures. Plantinga then points our attention towards a tension between these two facts. If human beings are a more evolved species of primate, then our cognitive faculties (ie, the parts of our body and mind that allow us to be rational creatures) have evolved out of lesser cognitive faculties. But, Plantinga says, if God does not exist, then the only factors that affected human evolution are time and chance. Based on time and chance alone, why should we be confident that our rational minds–which are merely the sum of lesser evolved minds plus time and chance–are actually rational at all? What basis do we have to believe our own conclusions? How do we know we are actually capable of knowing truth more than a primate? If the only players in our existence are lesser creatures, time, and chance, how do we know we are even highly evolved at all?

This astute observation was echoed by Thomas Nagel in his recent book Mind and Cosmos. Nagel, an agnostic philosopher from New York University, argues that human comprehension of the universe cannot be explained merely by atheistic evolutionary processes. It makes no sense to assume that humans can really make sense of their world on a conceptual level if human consciousness arose out of the very world it responds to. Nagel agrees with Plantinga that atheistic naturalism cannot explain why human beings can be rational creatures and do rational things that should be trusted.

Scientific knowledge is only possible if things unprovable by science are actually true. If Carl Sagan is correct and the material universe is all there was, is, and ever will be, then science itself is nothing more than a shot in the dark. If, however, human beings are the products of an infinitely greater Mind, then we have justification for believing that true and false are realities and not merely the shadow puppets of our ancestors.

Stacey Dash #fundie patheos.com

Planned Parenthood traded pizza for dead babies. Still think they care about women’s health?

image

Don’t let anyone tell you ever again that Planned Parenthood has anything to do with “parenthood.” Nor let them tell you that their clinics are all about women’s health. They’re not! They are in one business and one business only: abortions.

Former employees are speaking out against Planned Parenthood and revealing some of the sick and twisted things that go on behind the scenes — if selling fetal body parts wasn’t enough already — which includes selling abortions to get rewarded with pizza parties.

That’s what the pro-life activist group Live Action discovered when interviewing former employees. One of them, Sue Thayer who managed a clinic in Storm Lake, Iowa, said that her office had a monthly goal for abortions. Her specific clinic didn’t perform abortions but they would make referrals. Those were counted in the monthly quota and listed on a color-coded grid to keep employees motivated.

“We were really very goal-oriented,” Thayer said. “We would say things like, your pregnancy test, your visit today is X number of dollars, how much are you going to be able to pay towards that?”

You may want to stop eating right now to stomach what her office would tell these “patients” next:

If they’d say, “I’m not able to pay today,” then we would say something like, “Well, if you can’t pay $10 today, how are you going to take care of a baby? Have you priced diapers? Do you know how much it costs to buy a car seat? Where would you go for help? There’s no place in Storm Lake — or whatever town they were in — you know, where you can get help as a pregnant mom. So really, don’t you think your smartest choice is termination? We can take care of that and set it up for you.”

Disgusting.

Besides pizza parties, there were other rewards for salesmen: more time off and lunches with upper management.

Thayer added, “It sounds kind of crazy, but pizza is a motivator.”

Yeah, it sounds real crazy.

Live Action president Lila Rose points out something else that sounds crazy but is the reality: “Planned Parenthood doesn’t have quotas for adoptions. It doesn’t have quotas for prenatal care. But quotas for abortions? Absolutely.”

Can we finally put to rest the idea that Planned Parenthood cares about anything other than aborting babies?

Planned Parenthood’s Abortion Quotas

H/T The Blaze

Seathanaich #fundie patheos.com

Islamophobe: someone who fears Islam.

Yup, I'm an Islamophobe, and with good reason. All decent, free people should be afraid of Islam: what it is doing today in Europe is just a taste of what is to come. By the time I die, Muslim immigration coupled with suicidally-low "native" birth rates will place much of Europe under sharia law. Europe's second Dark Age is coming.

Samuel James #fundie patheos.com

What concerns me, though, is the possibility that Mr. Cook, and many of his fellow liberals, actually do understand what Jim Crow laws were, what the Indiana RFRA does, and still believe that a connection between the two is logical. What we’ve seen in American culture over the last few years is a tectonic shift in how many on the left think about the relationship between sexual politics and law. Emerging is a portrait of what my friend Alastair Roberts calls “New Morality.” New Morality is a specific narrative about human ethics, particularly the sexual kind, that places certain moral demands on all who want to participate in public life. The New Morality is specific about what must happen to those who refuse its worldview: They must relinquish the right to be heard.

New Morality is not liberalism, at least the way liberalism is often explained. Most social conservatives see the major threat of liberalism as permissiveness, the sanctioning of immoral or un-American behavior that threatens the social order. There’s still truth in that, of course, but New Morality is actually the opposite of permissiveness, it is prescription. It’s not quite right to think of New Morality liberalism as simply allowing too many things. Rather, by subjugating civil life to a set of postmodern doctrines about the autonomous self, it allows too few. Dissent has become heresy, and heresy cannot co-exist with the pure faith. We used to picture liberalism as pushing the boundaries of our conscience. New Morality liberalism has found an entirely new conscience, and seeks to shrink the margins, not expand them.

The belief that the Indiana RFRA is a license for discrimination is coherent only if one believes that offering any sort of legal recourse for businesses in discrimination lawsuits is itself intolerant. But that’s exactly where the times have taken us. We have arrived at a place where prominent columnists can speak openly about “stamping out” voices who disagree with New Morality. We see private Christian universities punished for hiring policies consistent with their charters and articles of faith. We see the personal lives of judges carefully screened and regulated for anti-New Morality activity. What is being created before our eyes is in no way secular. It is religion, and religious orthodoxy is the price of citizenship.

So then, we come back to the issue of what liberalism means. My question is: Who are today’s liberals? Who are the ones who will protest the creation of a state faith in New Morality and argue for the public inclusion of those with differing opinions? Who will widen the margins of civic life? Where are the true Jeffersons, the spokespeople for pluralism, the lovers of debate and of bottom-up cultural creation?

Can we find those liberals who defer to debate and persuasion rather than fiat and coercion? I’m afraid we have no choice. This isn’t about special protection for or the privileging of evangelicalism; it’s about recovering a sense of belonging for all in the public square. To be liberal is to believe that no social orthodoxy is ever worth more than freedom of conscience. That is precisely the conviction that is at risk today. Against this backdrop, Indiana’s RFRA is a fundamentally liberal law. The question is: Where are its liberal champions?

Lee Kaplan and the Stoltzfus parents #fundie patheos.com

Two parents from Pennsylvania have been sentenced to prison for up to seven years for “gifting” their six underage daughters to a man who claimed to be “prophet of God.”

Daniel and Savilla Stoltzfus unlawfully gave their young children to Lee Kaplan, who claimed to speak for God, after they left their Amish community. Kaplan was convicted just last month on 17 counts of child sex abuse for molesting and then “marrying” the six sisters.

A neighbor told CNN all about Kaplan, who was found living with 12 females (many of whom were underage) last year.

“My gut was telling me to confirm what I was thinking. I just knew. There was no reason why this older, significantly older man, any man, regardless of what they look like, would have this amount of children, all in blue dresses, never outside the house regularly, looking so scared… I knew that something wasn’t right.”

The neighbor’s gut was right, and now authorities have the evidence to prove it. They discovered that Kaplan met Daniel Stoltzfus at an auction in 2002 and laid the groundwork for a massive long con to convince the poor family he was speaking on behalf of their God.

Kaplan promised the family financial help, moved in with them, and ultimately took their six daughters as his brides. The eldest daughter had two children by Kaplan, including one that was conceived when she was just 14.

Clearly Kaplan was the mastermind behind this immoral operation, but the girls’ parents had to be held accountable as well. They put their daughters in direct danger and allowed this man to take advantage of them, all because of money and misplaced faith.

An attorney for Savilla Stoltzfus, William Craig Penglase, acknowledged this and expressed disappointment that she didn’t get a reduced sentence for cooperating with the prosecutors who brought charges against Kaplan.

“Individually, her sentence is completely appropriate… I understand the court’s outrage at their behavior… The struggle I’m having is she got no benefit for handing the government Lee Kaplan on a silver platter… She was the beginning, middle and end of the government’s case, and she got nothing back for it.”

Counsel for Daniel Stoltzfus said the father chose not to present any mitigating evidence at trial.

“He did want to take accountability… He understood the severity of the charges, and how the court had to view them… It’s really tough to make any sense out of what happened.”

The important thing here is that these girls are getting justice. Not just for the behavior of the man whom they were forced to marry, but also for the actions of the parents who allowed it to happen. It’s the silver lining in an otherwise tragic story.

Jay #fundie patheos.com

To say that atheism is a lack of belief in God and thereby excuses the atheist from showing atheism to be true with facts and sound reasons is a fantasy. That would be like me claiming Mexico doesn't exist. I can do what the atheist does and just dismiss all evidence for it out of hand.

Have you ever studied the gospels with an open mind? The life of Christ is the best evidence for the existence of God and they tell us what this God is like. Billions of people over the centuries have been convinced by them that God does indeed exist. Many of these people are some of the smartest people who have ever lived have come to believe in them.

Cindy Jacobs #fundie #god-complex patheos.com

We’re going to decree that the coronavirus will cease worldwide. Now what’s gonna happen? I don’t know if everybody will get healed. I don’t know… we’re praying. We prayed for vaccines. We prayed for Israel… They had vaccines. We have people interceding across the face of the Earth. Listen: Intercessors have been going to Wall Street! I mean… all over! I have to tell you: Intercessors are on this! I just want to thank you, intercessors of the world. You haven’t slept through this. You have been very, very active, and we’re gonna ask… God to heal those affected…

… Father, in the name of Jesus, You have promised we have all authority, not some authority! You have promised that we are seated with You in heavenly places, so we take Throne Room authority, and we bring that into the situation of the coronavirus, and we say in the name of Jesus, “Virus, you are illegal! This is God’s Earth!

Salvator Anthony Luiso, Patheos #fundie patheos.com

Salvatore Anthony Luiso: Thank you for this article, which was difficult for you to write. I respectfully disagree with the notion that "the one without a true conception of God cannot genuinely love". I would say that no one, other than God, can love perfectly, and that the better one's conception of God, the better one can love--although not necessarily the better one will love. Although I agree that "God is the One Scripture declares is love", I do not agree that "love is God". That said, I much appreciate your willingness to criticize Rachel Held Evans and her teachings so soon after her death, and to warn about them. Despite the fact that she died only a few days ago, I do not believe it is improper to criticize her and her teachings now. To the contrary: With so much undue respect and praise flooding out for her, the time calls for standing for the truth amid the flood. Whatever her intentions, however good they may have been, Evans was a dangerous, deceitful, and destructive author. However good her personality, character, and skills may have been, they do nothing to mitigate this fact. The fact that her writings were so highly regarded, admired, loved, and influential during her life should have been troubling to anyone who was familiar with them and who regarded and loved the Scriptures as God's word. One should be saddened by her death, and yet still abhor the dangerous falsehoods about God, sin, sexuality, and salvation which she spread. One should be sympathetic toward her family, friends, and followers, and yet deplore the popularity and pernicious influence of those falsehood. One should be sympathetic, too, toward those who are and will be deceived by them. I'm surprised and dismayed by the number of positive assessments of her that have been published in the so-called "Evangelical" section of Patheos since she was put into a medically-induced coma last month--although I know that one need not be an evangelical to have a blog there. I'm not surprised, but dismayed, to see that Mark Galli, editor in chief of Christianity Today, ended his apology for the publication of John Stonestreet's tribute by referring to Evans as "this dynamic sister in Christ". These are signs of the confusion and carelessness about sound doctrine among self-identified evangelicals in America.

Sarah Flood: If Evans was deceitful (and that would assume you know her motives and that they were bad; one may be unintentionally mistaken, but deceit is intentional), how exactly could she have "good character"? Do you have evidence of this deceit or are you just assuming she actually thought differently than what she said and lied to people intentionally? I didn't agree with Evans on everything (for different reasons than you), but she never struck me as anything but honest. Honestly mistaken, perhaps, but honest.

Salvatore Anthony Luiso: Among Merriam-Webster's definitions of the word "deceive", this is the first: "to cause to accept as true or valid what is false or invalid". I believe an honestly mistaken person can unintentionally deceive others. Regardless as to whether Evans was honestly mistaken, or dishonest, I believe she deceived others through her writings. I do not need to know her motives to believe this: I can simply know that she promoted falsehoods which misled her readers

Redboyds, Patheos #fundie #wingnut patheos.com

(=The death of Rachel Held Evans=)

It's very telling that the Friendly Atheist website posted an effusive eulogy for Evans, in particular praising her hostility to "right-wing evangelicals." After reading the article, I asked myself: When I die, do I want to be praised by atheists? Would the apostles have been pleased to know that they were praised by people who openly despise the religion they sacrificed their lives for? Would a "good and faith servant" who had 'fought the good fight" take any pleasure in being lauded by atheists? Had the apostles conformed to the pagan culture, there would have been no martyrs, and Christianity would not even exist today. Had Paul written "Do your best to fit in with unbelievers and make them like you" instead of "Be not conformed to this world," Christianity would not exit.

One thing we know about progressive Christianity: it has never attracted or converted atheists. C. S. Lewis made the astute observation that when an atheist or agnostic converts, he "goes all the way" to traditional, orthodox Christianity, not to the progressive variety. Lewis, an ex-atheist himself, had no use for the Christian left and was pained to see the growing liberalism in the Church of England of his day. As the Friendly Atheist article shows, atheists have a favorable view of the Christian left for the obvious reason that they see such people as Evans as being on their team, not the Christian team. I have never yet heard of any atheist who was converted by the writings of Evans - or of anyone on the Christian left. Her fans are people like herself - people raised in conservative Christianity but no longer comfortable with it, but not quite ready to let go of the Christian label. There are no converts from atheism joining the liberal churches today - just people like Evans, disgruntled ex-evangelicals. They are far outnumbered by people moving in the opposite direction - members of liberal churches who finally had enough of their trendy, post-Christian, world-conforming churches and left to find a traditional, Christ-centered, Bible-believing church home.
"If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you" (John 15:19).

Dan McClellan #fundie patheos.com

[in response to a street preacher being attacked with a baseball bat]

This would be a legitimate concern if women and minorities had equal access to power and resources, but free speech has this annoying tendency to serve the interests of the powerful more than the interests of the underprivileged. Systemic oppression can't be defeated from within the system. That's not to say anything goes, or that this woman was justified, but prioritizing free speech over all just serves the system, not justice or equality.

Anne Kennedy #fundie patheos.com

A number of critics attack the character of God’s love for all humanity by comparing Hell to Auschwitz. Would a loving God send his creatures there?

There are several differences between hell and Auschwitz, but two are dramatic and must be emphasized: 1. No one would choose to be in Auschwitz and 2. no one would choose to remain there if given the option to leave. Whereas scripture teaches us that the character of the human heart is such that unless God changes us, we would rather live in eternal torment than in harmony with our Creator.

First, our hearts are set against him. We suppress the truth about God (Rom 1:18-33). We willfully violate the laws he reveals in scripture and inscribes on our hearts (Rom 2). We do not seek to know or love God, but rather to replace him (Rom 3:10-20). We are, by nature, children of wrath (Eph 2:3).

Second, this hardened animosity toward God is stronger than our desire to escape anguish and torment. Observe that the Rich Man in Jesus’ parable in Luke 16:19-31 does not ask to be let out of the place of torment and ascend to be with Abraham and the poor man Lazarus. Not at all. He wants Lazarus to come down:
‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in anguish in this flame.’(Luke 16:24)

He sees heaven, sees glory, sees Abraham and doesn’t want it. He wants relief but not redemption.
The parable of Lazarus and the rich man only illustrates the biblical pattern of rebellion. God provides life, love, sustenance, and virtue. Humans respond by repudiating God. As life becomes coarse and suffering increases, the rebellion only gathers steam. Torment does not lead to repentance and dependence but to increased hatred.

....

God’s wrath is, for those who reject God, preferable to repentance and surrender which would bring mercy and peace.

We must not, therefore, think of hell as a place where God imprisons people against their will. Hell is the place where the human will is fully actualized.

This leads, of course, to a deeper question. God is omniscient. God knew from eternity those who would be damned. Why did he create them?

....

We cannot say then that God created morally neutral beings and then caused them to rebel against him and then punished them for acting according to the evil he created in their hearts. That is, sometimes, the caricature that critics of Christianity like to paint. It is, also, a caricature that many would like to lay at the feet of Calvinism in particular. But the problem is not one that is unique to any one theological perspective. All Christians believe that God is omniscient. Therefore, all must wrestle with the fact that God created many millions of people knowing that they would reject him and live forever in torment.
So God did not create people and then cause them to rebel against him.

God did create people, giving them life, love, the blessings of his created order, truth, common virtue, knowing that they would harden their hearts against him and return his blessings with curses. In fact, he created all people knowing that every single one of us would despise him, his love and his many gracious gifts.

God would be fully justified in handing each of us over to this despising and allowing all humans to continue to hate him for eternity. This would be both consistent with his love – creating, blessing, delighting in the beloved and then giving the beloved the desire of her heart – and consistent with his justice – sinners would experience the consequences of sin.

Instead, he choose to rescue some from this fate and not others. He chose to draw some to repentance and faith in Jesus Christ (John 6:37-40, 44, Romans 8:29-31, Eph 2:4-10) and allow others to follow their own hearts to their own end. As RC Sproul has pointed out so brilliantly, no one is treated unfairly. Some receive mercy. Others justice. No one can complain that God is in the wrong. And no one can say that they have not been loved by him.

But, to return to the problem, God determined to create millions of people, knowing that he would shower them with love and truth and that they would nevertheless hate him and, here’s the crux, knowing that he would not to soften their hatred and turn them to love, knowing that in the end he would say to them, “thy will be done…”

Why?

....

Paul, as he often does, asks what appears to be a rhetorical question. But the question is not really an open one. God allows people to follow their hearts and choose hell over repentance so that his loving-kindness to his enemies might be displayed during their lifetimes and his justice might be displayed at the Judgment (Rev.20)

Just judgment makes God’s justice manifest and when his character is revealed. he is glorified.
So is this what it is all about? God’s own glory?

Yes. That is what everything is about. God is the origin and measure of all that is good. A truly good being will glorify all that is good and that means God will glorify himself and all his attributes above all things.

With regard to those who despise him and violate his law, his glory is made manifest in the outworking of his justice – his “doing what is right”

But even then, and this must be observed, God does not merely snuff them out. They bear his image. They are his creatures. He gives even those who hate him the desires of their hearts. They would not have it any other way.

Jan Crouch #sexist patheos.com

In 2006, a 13-year-old girl named Carra Crouch spent a night in a hotel room with a 30-year-old man. They drank some alcohol and watched a movie. He also, she later testified, spiked her water and raped her after she passed out.

She wasn’t sure what to do, so she went to her grandmother and explained everything. And her grandmother did absolutely nothing about it… unless you count yelling at Carra. There was no phone call to cops, at least.

The reason all of this is big news right now is because the grandmother is Jan Crouch, the now-deceased woman who founded Trinity Broadcasting Network with her husband Paul Crouch.

The man who allegedly raped Carra was “a TBN employee at a Praise-A-Thon fundraiser in Atlanta.” And Carra has filed a personal injury lawsuit against the Trinity Christian Center (which runs TBN) saying her grandmother’s negligence caused her trauma and emotional distress. The trial just concluded yesterday.

The lawyer for Trinity says Jan Crouch was under no obligation to report anything to authorities because she was simply being a grandmother. She was off the clock. Carra didn’t come to her as a minister (which she was), making her legally obligated to report such a crime.

What really gets me is the reason Jan Crouch didn’t say anything, according to Carra’s lawyer.

"In Wednesday’s closing arguments, Carra Crouch’s attorney, David Keesling, said Jan Crouch, who died in May 2016, never reported the incident because she was more concerned about the 'bad press.'

…

'Jan Crouch, like her or not, her words mattered to Carra,' [Keesling] said. 'Carra went in fragile and she came out broken.'"

Now it’s up to a jury to decide whether Jan Crouch broke the law by disregarding what Carra told her.

Samuel James #fundie patheos.com

One moment during the lowest point of their journey, when all seems lost in the black ashes of Mordor, Samwise Gamgee asks Frodo whether he can remember the taste of good food and the feeling of warmth. Frodo’s reply has haunted me often:

‘No, I am afraid not, Sam,” said Frodo. ‘At least, I know that such things happened, but I cannot see them. No taste of food, no feel of water, no sound of wind, no memory of tree or grass or flower, no image of moon or star are left to me. I am naked in the dark, Sam, and there is no veil between me and the wheel of fire.”

I don’t think I have ever read anything that more poetically expresses what it’s like to be addicted to pornography than that passage.

Of course, that’s not what J.R.R. Tolkien was going for. In fact, Tolkien never quite fully fleshes out what kind of psychological affect the One Ring has on Frodo or Gollum or any other bearer. In a way, the lack of specific detail enhances the horror of both Gollum and Frodo’s transformations; we don’t know what exactly is going on inside them, but we can hear their cries.

The corrosive effect of porn on the soul is likewise shrouded in that kind of agonizing mystery. As someone who was rescued from severe bondage to porn, I can feel the contrast in my life now versus my life then much more keenly than I can describe it. I feel emotional lightness, I suppose, and I no longer live in that withering dread of exposure that colored every human encounter. But there’s something deeper, something in the inner chambers that seems to be pointed in another direction, almost as if I’d spent my entire life in a basement and have just recently seen through a window.

What does Frodo mean by “naked in the dark”? I’m not entirely sure, but I do know that the metaphor rings true when applied to porn. Porn requires nakedness, and that is part of its appeal, but the nakedness it demands is in the darkness, so that the porn addict can neither see himself clearly or the object of his desire clearly (and those are often the same thing). To be naked in the dark is to be blind and vulnerable, unable to cover oneself because of the darkness, and unwilling to walk into light until clothed.

Interestingly, the One Ring frequently tricks its wearer into thinking that he is the rightful owner of the Ring’s power and is thus entitled to it (this is Samwise’s temptation earlier in The Return of the King). The Ring initially bestows a false sense of glory, but then what happens, according to Frodo? “Naked in the dark.” The Ring promises to make kings but only creates servants.

Pornography’s primal appeal is erotic but its deepest appeal is spiritual. Viewers come for the titillation but they stay for the autonomy, the power to make an alternate reality in which mythological figures (actors and models) submit unhesitatingly. But like the One Ring, this is an illusion, one that conceals porn’s slavish designs. This is one reason pornography is not merely an aberrant species of sex, but something different from sex altogether. Sex, even prostitution, requires reality and knowledge; porn depends on fantasy and ignorance. Like the Ring, pornography promises kingship but delivers only serfdom.

Freedom comes for Frodo after the Ring was destroyed. Tolkien describes the moment right the Ring falls, with Gollum, into the volcanic Crack of Doom:

‘Well, this is the end, Sam Gamgee,’ said a voice by his side. And there was Frodo, pale and worn, and yet himself again; and in his eyes there was peace now, neither strain of will, nor madness, nor any fear. His burden was taken away.

When the Ring was destroyed, Frodo’s enslaved state of mind was destroyed too. So it seems that the nefarious power of the Ring included the eventual melding of its wearer’s mind with the Ring’s own mind. The Ring joined its evil nature to the nature of the One who desired it, so that the fate of the one was connected to the other.

This is true in a meaningful way of addiction. Theologian G.K. Beale has written about a motif in biblical literature whereby those who worship idols eventually become like the idols they worship. The Old Testament prophets seem to believe that to worship a false god is to, in a sense, take on the nature of that god, so that those who worship a god that cannot hear, speak, or move, likewise become deaf, mute, and impotent.

What about those who worship porn? Porn is illusory, and indeed, those addicted to it are often deeply disconnected from reality. Porn is cruel; those hooked on it are frequently manipulative and exploitive of others. And porn is dark, and very many people in its hold live under thick layers of secrecy and isolation.

Pornography is torture. Even in the midst of its most pleasurable delusions, it tortures the mind and spirit. Like Frodo under the spell of the Ring, people trapped in the compulsions of pornography often cannot imagine the tastes and smells and sights of life in the light and the open air, the warmth of existence not shrouded in shame. The Ring could only be destroyed in the place it was made. The same is true of pornography; its shackles can only be undone in the spiritual realm, the realm where the shackles were forged.

Like Frodo, Christ entered the heart of darkness’s domain. He did so for Ring-bearers who couldn’t even take the journey towards their freedom. In Christ the power of sin was destroyed forever so that those united with him can be rid of their hellish burden. “Peace I leave with you,” Jesus said. “My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”

Samuel James #fundie patheos.com

The internal logic of Bake For Them Two would also fail if applied to a number of other controversial topics that progressive Christians tend to protest against. Take spanking. Should someone who believes that spanking is immoral agree to babysit for a parent who spanked their children and instructed the babysitter to do likewise? Would carrying out corporal punishment on behalf of the parent amount to a “bake for them two” moment, a chance to sacrifice personal comfort to accommodate someone else? If you say no, then already you’ve granted the existence of moral dilemmas in which accommodation is not a sufficient option. “But spanking is abuse, and same-sex relationships don’t harm anyone.” That’s the point, though: If same-sex marriage is what the Christian baker says it is, then to him, the wedding ceremony is indeed harmful to the couple and others. The only way around this problem is to advance a clear moral proposition (“Same-sex marriage is good”), the very thing that opponents of religious liberty laws say shouldn’t happen in a public exchange.

My guess though is that the Christians who favor a “bake for them two” approach don’t track with this logic for the same reason they don’t track with most critiques of same-sex marriage in general: They actually don’t quite understand what they support. This was the point brought out brilliantly by my friend Matthew Anderson in a piece from yesterday about the “illiberal DNA” of the same-sex marriage movement. Matt begins by supposing marriage is indeed unchangeable in its definition and irreducible in its purpose (=the traditionalist Christian argument). Given that, would not a floor-to-ceiling revolution in our understanding of something as foundational as marriage require absolute enforcement in almost every aspect of our culture?

Erasing or obscuring the moral uniqueness of the traditional nuclear family unit—if there is one— would require, dare I say, both an extensive and elaborate artifice that attempted to reconfigure not simply the family, but all those institutions which the family has some bearing upon. Maintaining such a support would require the most powerful and influential institutions in American life, of which there are currently (by way of hypothesis) three: entertainment, business, and the government. And as long as those dominant institutions established such an outlook on the world, any remaining institutions would come under significant pressure to reform themselves accordingly.

In other words, you cannot believe that marriage is X without also believing it’s not Y. Conversely, there’s no future for trying to make marriage equal X + Y if X and Y actually say opposite things which yield opposite effects in every aspect of our public and–yes–personal life.

What does it all mean? It means that anywhere there is belief, there will be conscience, and that changes to one will alter the other eventually. Wherever people believe in their own heart that marriage is invented by God and exists only in a covenantal state between a man and a woman, their conscience will follow suit and apply that belief in practical ways to their living and their doing. Asking people to surrender their public conscience is the same as asking them to change their beliefs. Of course, beliefs change without being forced. People become convinced otherwise, or they eventually lose confidence in prior held beliefs. That’s how humanity works.

It’s also how conversion to Christian faith works. That’s why there’s no safe space in the debate over same-sex marriage to argue for a conscientious Christian accommodation. There’s no such thing. Protecting the pattern of human belief that can be opened to the Gospel means protecting the freedom of the conscience. This protection can happen even if, as I’ve argued, culture disagrees uniformly with that conscience. But in the case of same-sex marriage, the debate over RFRA, and misguided Christian attempts to end-around the basic principles of conscience and culture, it’s becoming clear that there really is no way to have your cake and bake it too.

Marco Rubio #fundie patheos.com

(Full transcription of Marco Rubio's latest TV campaign ad)

“Our goal is eternity, the ability to live alongside our Creator and for all time, to accept the free gift of salvation offered to us by Jesus Christ. The struggle on a daily basis as a Christian is to remind ourselves of this. The purpose of our life is to cooperate with God’s plan, to those who much has been given much is expected and we will be asked to account for that. Were your treasures stored up on earth or in Heaven and to me I try to allow that to influence me in everything that I do.”

Stacey Dash #fundie patheos.com

Why you can’t trust Snopes anymore

There’s a lot of bad information on the Internet. It used to be pretty easy to spot but nowadays, everybody’s putting out fake news.

Hoping to help us along is Snopes — the place web surfers go to debunk urban legends and to fact-check that annoying e-mail your grandparents send about cell phones causing brain damage. But they can no longer be trusted. Here’s why.

As it turns out, the site is run by leftists who want us to believe they’re objective. It’s hard to trust that with one of their latest entries.

When Ben Carson, now secretary of Housing and Urban Development, was speaking recently before his HUD staff, he compared slaves to immigrants and the entire Democratic Party imploded:

“That’s what America is about. A land of dreams and opportunity. There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships, worked even longer, even harder for less. But they, too, had a dream that one day their sons, daughters, grandsons, granddaughters, great-grandsons, great-granddaughters might pursue prosperity and happiness in this land.”

Liberals everywhere jumped on Carson as if he had given a Nazi salute. Whoopi Goldberg was highly offended by Carson’s comparison and said on The View, “Were the slaves really thinking about the American dream? No, because they were thinking, ‘What the hell just happened?!’” Samuel L. Jackson said in typical fashion, “MUTHAFUKKA PLEASE!!!” and slandered carson as a “#dickheadedtom.” The NAACP was flabbergasted and posted to Twitter, “Immigrants???”

But where was all this selective outrage when President Obama said the same thing in 2012 and 2015? He, too, said slaves were immigrants. Yet, no one cared, because it was Obama.

Or, how about John F. Kennedy — certainly a favorite name to invoke for Democrats — when he wrote about immigrant slaves coming to America. No outrage their, either.

So, did Snopes bother to cite any of these comments in its take, “Did Ben Carson Liken Slavery to Immigration?” No, they did not. They were too busy “helping” Dr. Carson learn what a real “immigrant” is rather than dig up these other examples.

Looks like the fact checkers need fact checkers.

Order my Book, There Goes My Social Life: From Clueless to Conservative!

Bowie1 #fundie patheos.com

God's design for marriage is still one man and one woman no matter what people are tempted to do. I suppose you could call this wife swapping which I heard about when I was a younger man but it is still sin no matter what people may feel. Naturally I would assume there could still be jealousy that their wife is with another man even if they agree to an "open marriage". That's the natural response in most cases and the cause of many divorces.

Anne Kennedy #fundie patheos.com

(From the blog post "10 Funny Things About Climate Change")

So, because apparently I am single mindedly focused on our Lord, here are ten funny jokes I thought of about the climate change summit going on in Paris. Because if my main thing is Jesus, the western world’s main thing is climate change. If we don’t make some jokes, we’ll probably all perish from all the self righteousness.

1. Jesus promises to destroy and remake the earth and cosmos at his second coming, let’s cripple the world’s economy now so that he will forget and Never Return.

2. Boy it’s chilly out here in upstate New York, love me some global warming. (Sorry, I have to say that every time.)

3. Maybe if we feel more guilty about ourselves, the third world will have warm loaves of bread appear gloriously in their hands and all the children of the world will dance and sing forever.

4. And the Bread will be Gluten Free, GMO Free, Monsanto Free, and Warm, but not too hot. Just so long as it’s not The Bread that comes down from Heaven that Gives Life to the World, none of that, that can’t help anyone.

5. Hmmmm, nothing like the glorious steam rising off of a thousand corruptly rich politicians flying into the heart of France on private jets and opening wide their mouths to chat together about what Everybody In The World Should Do over a little bubbling champagne.

6. Instead of worshiping God and caring for each other and his creation, let’s foist that onto an uber big bureaucracy whose highest good is killing babies before they are born. (I guess that’s not really a joke.)

7. Maybe if we borrow some more money we don’t have and take some more money from people who don’t have very much we can Save Everyone from Total Destruction.

8. God must not exist and is stupid so it’s ok for us to lie lots and lots and lots and not look at the reality of the world’s problems at all.

Gosh, these aren’t turning out to be funny at all. I must be sounding bitter. Let me try again.

9. The Climate of the Earth has never heretofore changed and we know Everything about Science now and are very clever so shut up.

Oh never mind, I can’t really think of anything funny to say so for number ten, here’s Jesus talking about Climate Change.

10. “But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.” Mark 13:24-26

Good luck, powers and principalities and presidents of the world. Do your worst.

Christopher Thomas #fundie patheos.com

(=Regarding the homohpbic backlash of the World Vison fiasco back in 2014=)

Shall we compare and contrast the two articles?

This:

"...those bullies...bullies...latest convulsion of evangelihate...the whole hideous white evangelical army of hate they lead...gleefully reject 90 percent of what Jesus was about...bullying crusade that deliberately takes money away from starving children...the armies of hate...Muslim-hating, gay-hating, crusade of contempt for the poor...the sanctimonious contempt of the white evangelical bullies...the armies of hate are on the march..."

Versus this:

"As Christians, we believe with deepest sincerity that the embrace of homosexual practice, along with other sins, keeps people out of the kingdom of God. And if our society celebrates it, we can’t both be caring and not say anything....it is an oversimplification to say that Christians — or conservative evangelicals — are simply against homosexuality. We are against any sin that restrains people from everlasting joy in God....The issue is sin. That’s what we’re against...."

And this:

"Some would like to see this whole issue of homosexuality divided into two camps: those who celebrate it and those who hate it. Both of these groups exist in our society. There are the growing numbers, under great societal pressure, who praise homosexuality. We might call them the left. And there are people who hate homosexuality, with the most bigoted rationale and apart from any Christian concern. We might call them the right.

The current debate is plagued by this binary lens. Those on the left try to lump everyone who disagrees with them into that right side. If you don’t support, you hate. Meanwhile, those on the right see compromise and spinelessness in anyone who doesn’t get red-faced and militant. If you don’t hate, you support.

But true followers of Christ will walk neither path. We have something to say that no one else is saying, or can say."

And this:

"Distancing ourselves from both the left and the right, we don’t celebrate homosexual practice, we acknowledge God’s clear revealed word that it is sin; and we don’t hate those who embrace homosexuality, we love them enough to not just collapse under the societal pressure. We speak the truth in love into this confusion, saying, simultaneously, “That’s wrong” and “I love you.” We’re not the left; we say, this is wrong. And we’re not the right; we say, you’re loved. We speak good news, with those sweetest, deepest, most glorious words of the cross — the same words that God spoke us — “You’re wrong, and you’re loved.”"

And this:

"You’re wrong and you’re loved — that’s the unique voice of the Christian. That’s what we say, speaking from our own experience, as Tim Keller so well puts it, “we’re far worse than we ever imagined, and far more loved than we could ever dream.”"

And this:

"That’s our message in this debate, when society’s elites despise us, when pop songs vilify us, when no one else has the resources to say anything outside of two extremes, we have this incomparable opportunity to let the gospel shine, to reach out in grace: you’re wrong and you’re loved. We get to say this."