This has to be one of the most asinine, ignorant, and unfair articles that I have ever read—and yet it comes from the ombudsman at The Washington Post. The guy basically admits that when traditional marriage supporters speak, he closes his eyes and puts his fingers in his ears and says “na na na na na…” After all, everyone knows such people are bigots. Why should bigots have a hearing? He writes:
Most journalists have a problem with religionists telling people what they can and cannot do. We want to write words, read books, watch movies, listen to music, and have sex and babies pretty much when, where and how we choose… That’s why many journalists have a hard time giving much voice to those opposed to gay marriage. They see people opposed to gay rights today as cousins, perhaps distant cousins, of people in the 1950s and 1960s who, citing God and the Bible, opposed black people sitting in the bus seat, or dining at the lunch counter, of their choosing.
This was breathtaking to read, though I suppose not surprising. Christians and other traditional marriage supporters need to understand that the public space for supporting marriage is shrinking. Such views are not even allowed at the table of rational discourse. No one has to deal seriously with our arguments because they have already been ruled out as unworthy and immoral. I suppose this kind of thing is not surprising in the pages of The Washington Post. What is surprising is the rapidity with which this point of view seems to be taking hold in the wider culture. Christians, be ready. This is not going to get any easier for us.
Mollie Hemingway has rightly given this article a thorough thumping. Read it here.
As their real views on the slaughter of millions of children within the womb are finally being revealed, this is no surprise. I’m glad they’re finally being honest about who they really are. The surprise will be in the coming years as we watch colleagues and brothers capitulate to the sins of our time.
Bryce, with all due respect, none of this is even remotely surprising–not even the apostasy that is already manifesting on this issue (Matthew 24:9-10).
I am reminded of 1 Samuel 2:25–Eli’s sons duly rebuked, but deaf to their father’s exhortation because the Lord Himself had turned them over and determined to put them to death. Truly, I believe we should be past defining all this as a “loss” for the Church and we should recognize it as Romans 1:18ff defines it: The wrath of God against an idolatrous culture. When a people turns from the author of life, they lose the sense to even follow the basics of the created order (such as heterosexual procreation), and so seal their own doom within a generation.
It strikes me that all this that we are seeing–both through individual encounters and countless stories we could all tell, as well as the big picture–simply confirms the words of the Lord Himself. Didn’t He say all this would happen? Didn’t He say that we’d be hated by ALL nations (even *gasp* the United States!) for His name’s sake?
Let us rejoice and be glad as He counseled and commanded (Matthew 5:11-12). And as the rush at us with their stones, ears stopped to block out our witness of the Son of Man (Acts 7:57), let us not hold it against them. It is for them, not ourselves or our “kingdoms” that we grieve.
Are you suggesting legal recognition for same-sex marriages would “seal our doom within a generation”?
W.r.t. being hated- be careful you don’t slip into the fallacy of thinking that because the world hates you for something you’re doing in the context of your faith that said thing must be right and good.
It’s possible for a believer to do something the world hates because that thing is, in fact, not of God and is legitimately deserving of scorn.
For instance, I would imagine the folks at Westboro often pat themselves on the ack after reading Matthew 5:11-12.
I’m not /suggesting/ anything, Buddy. I’m saying it. Scripture, biology, and demographics tell the story. Can’t you tell the difference between an argument and a declaration?
And you’d better be careful not to slip into the fallacy (whoops–you do it all the time) of applying rationalism to the that which transcends it: the proclamation of biblical truth. By your measure, no one could EVER take solace in the words of Christ when they are persecuted. They would simply adjust their glasses and say, “I’d better not slip into any fallacies here.”
By the way, I’m still waiting to hear your answer to my question: To whom does each individual belong?
Scripture, biology, and demographics tell the story.
And yet they don’t. Based on the verses you’ve mentioned I see no evidence that wide scale rejection of God’s sexual ethic results in the near-immediate downfall of civilizations. You said “within one generation”. That’s what, 30 years? Or if you want to lengthen it to a single human lifespan, maybe 90 years?
Biology tells us little as well. Lesbian couples are perfectly capable of reproducing. They’re little different than most high-income, non-believing couples when it comes to children, at least as far as fertility is concerned. Gay couples can adopt, and frequently not from domestic sources.
Demographics indicate that many countries friendly to same-sex marriage are due to decline in population, but the decline in their fertility rates had already begun prior to their recognizing same-sex marriage.
And you’d better be careful not to slip into the fallacy of applying rationalism to the that which transcends it: the proclamation of biblical truth.
God does not declare in his word that any society which grants legal recognition to same-sex marriages will cease to exist within one generation. So we’re not talking about specific biblical truth. You give a nod to this when you remark that “scripture, biology and demographics” tell the story. “Biology and demographics” implies a rational argument for your claim.
By your measure, no one could EVER take solace in the words of Christ when they are persecuted. They would simply adjust their glasses and say, “I’d better not slip into any fallacies here.”
Nothing I’ve said renders those under persecution unable to draw solace from the fact that God loves them, is sovereign, has prepared a place for them in heaven and will be glorified despite (or perhaps “especially through”) the wrongs done to them.
By the way, I’m still waiting to hear your answer to my question: To whom does each individual belong?
Nobody, although God is sovereign. Those who know Him are called sons and daughters, not chattel property.
Ben Carson recently infamously said to READ HISTORY- you should try it and see why some of the greatest civilizations died
Did they die within a generation of first granting legal recognition to same-sex marriage? If not then it’s not so relevant to this discussion.
thanks for admitting they died!
Buddy, your final answer tells it all.
You are clearly operating from an a-theistic position (notice I didn’t write “atheistic”). I have noted this for some time in your post. On the one hand, you appear to confess Christ. But your words (here and elsewhere) are as saturated with self-determination as anyone I have ever read. Every point of departure we have ever had or will have flows from the difference in this presupposition.
To clarify, Psalm 24:1 sums up the entire paradigmatic lens through which Scripture is properly viewed. You are correct when you say we are not “chattel” property of God. “Chattel” refers by definition to human relationship. Even in societies wherein such is allowed, limits are/were placed on what a master of a chattel slave might do with them. God ultimately suffers no such limitations.
Let me make it personal, just so I am clear. Every last fiber of your being, your ability to think, reason, and speak, the deepest motivations, meditations, and fantasies of your innermost being–everything you are, have, and do spirit, soul, and body belong completely and absolutely to God and God alone. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20) You will in the end stand before the judgment seat of Christ like everyone else and and be weighed in the balance regarding what you have done, thought, said, and intended in your flesh (2 Corinthians 5:10). Keep in mind Paul was speaking to Christians and in the next verse (2 Corinthians 5:11) clearly applied this reality to himself as motivation for how he lived and ministered. You have the ABILITY to do much; you have the RIGHT to do much less. (And of those rights, it is expected that you lay down a great many of them–1 Corinthians 8-10.) The simple fact is you didn’t determine the day of your birth, the epoch, culture, language, or family into which you were born, the color of your eyes, or the finest line in your fingerprint, among other things. Unless you rebel and commit suicide, you don’t know the day of your death. In short, there isn’t the minutest scrap of your being that is not God’s. The answer “nobody” is abjectly wrong in every possible way. God is more than just “sovereign” in the highly qualified sense you project. He OWNS you and will hold you accountable for every last thing you do, say, and think. He has /loaned/ you yourself in the sense of stewardship. When you stand before Him, what will you do? Quote the U.S. Constitution or any other Post-Enlightenment drivel you seem to exalt above Scripture itself? What will you do then to qualify His absolute ownership of your very consciousness and freewill as you seem so eager to do now?
The same is true of every other human being on the planet that ever was, is, or will be–whether they confess God as Lord or not. Like it or not, they are created in God’s image and for /His/ pleasure. Romans 1 details in excruciating language what God does with human beings who turn their backs on Him–not because they aren’t beholden to Him, but precisely because they are. I and every other Christian is charged with delivering the message of God’s ownership AND reconciliation (i.e., deliverance from God’s wrath) by the blood of Christ. I am motivated in what I say by that and that alone. I do so keeping 2 Corinthians 13:8 in mind. I encourage you to ponder that verse in the spirit the Apostle Paul (and not Thomas Jefferson) would have understood such words.
The paradox, of course, is what C.S. Lewis notes: Those who yield most fully, who most completely recognize they belong to Another are the freest, and most fully themselves.
As for the rest, I will answer with some questions:
1) Do you really think I am unaware that people who engage in homosexual acts cannot procreate when they practice heterosexuality (naturally or artificially)?
2) Do you believe me so naive to think that the ancient civilizations of Canaan, Greece, and Rome, and the modern ones in Western Europe /ceased to exist/ once they embraced this lifestyle? Concomitantly, has it occurred to you that the term “doom” just /might/ have a larger semantic domain than the one you ascribed to it in your strawman re-framing of my statement?
3) Do you really believe my line of reasoning is so shallow as to argue for some sort of “flip switching” for our society (demographically, sociologically, or spiritually) regarding the legal codification and ratification homosexual acts? (Hint: your observation that gay-friendly societies were already in demographic decline when they made that fateful decision hardly undermines my argument.)
Buddy, I won’t insult your intelligence and suggest you really don’t “get” what I’m saying. This leaves me with the conclusion that you have an appetite for forcing people into the labor of dismantling your absurd caricatures of what they (rather obviously) really mean, OR you like to muddy the waters so you don’t have to deal with unpleasant truths facing you.
Either way, you have a penchant for avoiding the obvious.
The bulk of what you’ve written argues for the absolute authority of God over all creation, past and present, including every man and woman who has ever lived or will ever live. I don’t dispute that. What I dispute is that the language of “ownership” aptly describes God’s relationship with mankind, and especially with believers.
Do you really think I am unaware that people who engage in homosexual acts cannot procreate when they practice heterosexuality (naturally or artificially)?
You mentioned there were biological and demographic arguments to support the idea that legal recognition for same-sex marriage dooms civilizations. Since you didn’t say what they were, I speculated that they might revolve around the inability of same-sex couples to naturally produce children. So I mentioned some ways in which they can produce (or import) children.
Do you believe me so naive to think that the ancient civilizations of Canaan, Greece, and Rome, and the modern ones in Western Europe /ceased to exist/ once they embraced this lifestyle?
I wasn’t sure, so I tried to ask for clarification. Unfortunately, I wasn’t sufficiently explicit. I re-used your “doom” language without describing exactly what I thought that meant. When you affirmed that you were indeed saying that legal recognition “dooms” a nation with a generation (and mentioned demographics) I thought you were using “doom” the same way. It seems you weren’t.
Could you maybe clear up all the misunderstanding and elaborate on you mean by “seal their doom within a generation”? What exactly is doom? How long is “within a generation”?
Do you really believe my line of reasoning is so shallow as to argue for some sort of “flip switching” for our society (demographically, sociologically, or spiritually) regarding the legal codification and ratification homosexual acts?
I’ve read such an argument before on conservative Christian blogs so I didn’t automatically rule it out. The language of your original post certainly seems to suggest something along those lines: “When a people turns from the author of life, they lose the sense to even follow the basics of the created order (such as heterosexual procreation), and so seal their own doom within a generation.”
I read this to mean “If a people fails to follow the basics of created order then they seal their doom within a generation.”
Your error on the first point is illustrated in your own (correct) contention elsewhere in the thread, wherein you object to the anthropomorphic application of “narcissism” to God. Being divine, He is above such. In the same way, however, you anthropomorphize God by creating a false choice between His loving fatherhood and His absolute ownership. He is BOTH Father (in a way far beyond what any human father could achieve), He loves (far beyond what any human is capable of), and He also owns (in a way no human slaveholder has ever been able). He does own all, absolutely, and for you refer to Scripture as a basis for your thought in one part of your response yet be blind to this overarching biblical reality at the level of the DNA of your thought pretty much speaks for itself. You do not need a verse or two; you need conversion of worldview and paradigm shift.
As for the rest, sheesh, Buddy…
Please quantify what you mean by “doom” and “within a generation”. Or are these even quantifiable terms? If you’re declaring “X is going to happen in Y time frame” I’d like to know what X and Y are, in as much detail as possible. Preferably at a level that renders your declaration falsifiable.
To ownership: it fails as an analogy for God’s relationship to human beings because it precludes familial relationship God has declared to exist between himself and those whom he loves. You don’t “own” children. You are sovereign over them, and rightfully so, but you don’t “own” them.
In any case, I fail to see how our disagreement over “ownership” plays into our disagreement over the proper Christian response to efforts to legally recognize same-sex marriages. Even were I to grant that God “owns” human beings I still wouldn’t see that as arguing for strenuous political resistance on the part of believers to efforts to legally recognize s.s.m.
Buddy, we will be in a loop forever (a la /Groundhog Day/) as long as we differ on the presupposition of God’s claim upon every human being. I look at passages such as 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 and 2 Corinthians 5:10 (God’s right to judge what we do with our bodies), Matthew 12:36-37 (God’s right to judge what we say) and Proverbs 16:2 and Jeremiah 17:10 (God’s right the judge thoughts and motives of the heart and mind), along with a host of other passages such as Psalm 24:1 and Exodus 19:5 and conclude that God’s claim and ownership of everything He has created is absolute. You, on the other hand, lean on limited extended metaphors and anthropomorphism and draw non-sequitur conclusions (hint: human beings procreate their children who are secondarily in their image; God directly creates all humanity who are primarily in His image). There is no amount of explaining, cajoling, or indeed preaching that will convince you–your presupposition of fearful (yes, fearful) qualifiers is highly interested because God’s claim on you strikes at your existential core. If the Holy Spirit cannot convince you, how can I? The whole thing is beyond my pay grade.
As long as we hold different presuppositions going into a discussion about God, law, human behavior, and ultimate responsibility with different views on such a basic question as /whose/ we are, we cannot ever come to an agreement about /who/ we are and therefore what we can and cannot do with impunity. I am a Christians. You seem to be something of a Deist.
That you go so far as to ask what bearing it has upon the present discussion reveals the level of opacity you are experiencing on the issue, which, I would contend, is directly related to the presupposition you have subscribed to.
As for the rest, given our respective positions, I will say in the inimitable spirit of Bill Murray, “I would love to stand here and talk to you, but I’m not going to.”
In lieu of continuing the discussion, then, I’d be satisfied to just get some detail about the “doom” and “within a generation” portions of what you declared.
God willing I may yet live to see the end of “within a generation”, and perhaps some day I’ll be able to look back and (humbly) say to myself, “You know, David Thomas totally nailed it in 2013.”
Without further detail that won’t ever be possible, because I’ll never be able to gauge whether what you’ve declared will happen has actually happened.
Ya know Buddy… I’m not sure why The David Troll picked this bridge to live under…
But it’s clear from everyone’s Postings here… He pretty much has a goblet of Sour wine to pour on us all.
Makes you wonder why he’d every want to leave that Sunshine & Rainbow place he tried to paint for us AS HIS PASTORATE… would ever give him cause to bend low to pick the nits of Denny Burk’s blog… unless… he believes himself to have Special Annointing of chastisement for all with his uber-intellectual arguments… and churlish maturity.
“Most journalists have a problem with religionists telling people what they can and cannot do. We want to write words, read books, watch movies, listen to music, and have sex and babies pretty much when, where and how we choose…”
In a pinch, this would probably do for a good definition of narcissism.
And David Thomas, you are right on the money, I’m afraid.
So it’s narcissism to resent another human being’s attempt to circumscribe which words one can write, which books one can read, which music one can listen to and with which consenting adults one can have sex?
I guess we have a very Narcissistic God then!!!
Key words: “…to resent another human being‘s attempt…”
as far as I know Jesus was a human being- he sure must have been “Narcissistic” when he was enraged at the traders at the temple!!- or when he told people what they were doing is wrong!!
I love how in almost every comment you post on any topic you put your foot in your mouth-its hilarious
Shhhhhh. He thinks he’s incredibly suave and intelligent. You’re popping his bubble!
Point taken. To be completely accurate I should have said “…another human being’s attempt who is not also God…”
You’re essentially arguing it’s narcissistic to be angry when another created being tries to squelch one’s basic (and, in the United States at least, constitutionally guaranteed) rights, such as that of speech.
your funny !!
Well, I didn’t think narcissism was the right word but it was early, so…
Anyway, better words would perhaps be “logically inconsistent” and in some ways “arrogant.”
Logically inconsistent because he apparently has no problem telling other people, namely religionists, what they should & shouldn’t be doing, i.e. allegedly telling him what he shouldn’t be doing.
Logically inconsistent because journalists are always telling other people what they should and shouldn’t be doing or saying or watching or listening to or which behaviors they think are acceptable or unacceptable.
Logically inconsistent because I doubt he takes issue with the government, as long as it’s a liberal government, telling people what they can & can’t do. And doesn’t the government restrict lots of sexual interactions & social arrangements? Is this guy for the removal of laws against bigamy, polygamy, & incest? If not, why not? Who’s to tell people who they can & can’t have sex & babies with?
I could go on, but what’s the point? This guy has already before the fact established that anyone who disagrees with him is wrong & therefore not worth listening to.
“What is surprising is the rapidity with which this point of view seems to be taking hold in the wider culture. Christians, be ready. This is not going to get any easier for us.”
This is true, and I’m afraid most true Christians aren’t really engaging their children on this issue, as they are going to face a far different moral landscape in America than we did. We really need to discuss the possibility that homeschooling is going to be the only Christian choice,and if that ever becomes illegal, we may have to flee America.
I think another telling quote is, “Isn’t your marriage, at root, based on the love and commitment you have for your spouse, not what you think about the neighbors?”
It reveals that he truly doesn’t understand our view, and I believe the historical view, of marriage. While marriage includesan expression of love, it is more than that. Marriage is a type of contract necessary for the health of society. One benefit is that it defines and protects the weaker members of the family (wife and kids) by establishing legal obligation as well as ramifications for desertion. By redefining marriage simply as an expression of love, we are drastically changing one of the major institutions designed to protect our society.
The fact that he doesn’t understand this is partly his fault for, as you say, “putting his fingers in his ears.” However, I think we share some of the blame for poorly articulating the purpose of the states involvement in this religious institution.
Before too many more of you guys and gals get all smug with your condemnation of the reporter… I’d like to know if YOUR congregation is segregated.
If it is… Then I believe you’ve got some serious problems responding with any authority.
I highly doubt any of the congregations of the posters on this blog are de jure segregated. De facto sure, but that doesn’t damage their credibility in the same way.
Buddyglass, if you can show me where there has been a widespread rebuke and repentance if these abhorrent and flawed doctrines:
“The Mark” of Cain
The “Sethite View” of Genesis 6
The Ham/Canaanite error of Genesis 9
Then I’ll retract my statement.
But I’ll wager $20 that says you can’t.
Steven, what in the world are you talking about?
I’ve been in evangelical churches for 30 years. I’ve NEVER been in one (and I’ve attended in the North, South, and WEST) that was segregated. To a man, the pastors roundly condemned racism from the pulpit without apology to their MIXED congregations.
My church in Kentucky was a haven to mixed couples, all started when the pastor welcomed a black man and his white wife to sit on the front pew because the “TV camera hates empty pews there.” That was the beginning of perhaps half a dozen mixed couples–to say nothing of all the other African Americans–who felt welcome there.
When that first black man sickened with cancer, the (largely white) church fasted and prayed for his healing, but alas, he died. His young widow and two small (mixed) children was cared for by the church until she promptly remarried to a young pastor on the church staff. He raised the children and they have been successfully married for over 20 years.
I should know. I was that pastor.
Stop drinking the Koolaid, Steven, that Christians are racial bigots. That’s a lie. The stand that Christians (black and white) have against homosexual practices is biblical and will NEVER change–even if some slide on the matter (just as some who /call/ themselves Christians can be racist).
Ok… Who said this?
“the most segregated hour of Christian America is 11 o’clock on Sunday Morning”?
It’s not a matter of whether Christians are or are not bigots… The matter is that those doctrines that I listed have not been corrected by an accurate interpretation of the text. This is the issue that the reporter used in the argument of why he’s not buying it.
In his mind Christianity lost its moral High Ground when the text was used to justify slavery.
There is precedent for malpractice when it comes to declaring what God wants when it comes to deciding who gets to go to Heaven and who doesn’t. Perhaps the reporter just wants to remind us of this.
Steven, you are presenting textbook strawmen. Over the years, many, many bad things have been done in the name of, well, pretty much everything–including Christianity. Yes, people claiming Christianity as a base misused Scripture to justify slavery. At the same time, /other/ Christians saw right through it and fiercely opposed them–also in the name of Christ.
On this Buddy and I agree: You are reaching into the realm of the arcane to dig out doctrines many, many people have never heard of or adhered to. Why waste time “repenting, rebuking and repudiating” when 95+% have never even heard of them?
I served for years as a missionary in Latin America where the whole “white/black-free/slave” dichotomy was non-existent (hard to believe, but America is not the navel of the universe and the measure of all human existence). Know what? “Birds of a feather flock together.” It’s this way is restaurants, college cafeterias, neighborhoods, and the rest. It is a HUMAN trait and behavior, not specifically a religious one.
Religious people are human, and imperfect. But for you to suggest that there are white, white, Hispanic, and Asian churches all simply because white Christians are morally decayed shows just how naive and angry you really are.
I suggest you spend a little time investigating church history and the explanation the churches gave for the different races post flood.
I’m not the one being naive.
On that list of 4 doctrines that I gave… One of those is the officially endorsed doctrine of Lifeway’s HCSB bible… and promoted in its Sunday School literature, …today… to the kids of the Southern Baptist Convention.
And taught as official doctrine in Denny’s Seminary.
As a point of clarification, Steven, when you make these comments (other than the “heh hehs…really?), just /which/ “Christianity” are you referring to? Because it sure seems to be that you have tagged one small fraction of one small fraction of the faith across time and space, viewed /that/ fraction from a particular angle, and then come to your conclusions.
Armed with this myopia, here you come (on a thread that has nothing to do with the subject), cryptically claiming “special knowledge” of the matter by naming “doctrines” you believe to be “proof” that Christianity has lost its high ground.
Meanwhile, you have no once addressed my rather pointed examples (personal and otherwise) that you are rather barking up the wrong tree when it comes to how you have chosen to define faith and practice. You are a perfect example of one who says, “I saw ten Indians walking single file, therefore all who walk single file…”
I’m not cryptically claiming “special knowledge”…
I’m straight out telling you from personal experience and investigation and ministry to the Homosexual Community…that this inability to reach or change the culture that is currently happening in the United States is directly related to one so-called “arcane” doctrine based in falsehoods.
If you’d rather call it having “special revelation”… then so be it. I’ve got no problem with that… because I’m not alone in this discovery.
When the people in the pews in the modern American Evangelical church are taking Psychotropic medication at ever escalating rates, it can’t hold on to it’s youth and 90% of Pastor’s kids are leaving the church, never to return… You better EXPECT God to intervene with some “special Revelators” to correct the Pulpit Prostitutes of this nation.
So “HELLO Brother!”
I remember you now. You know everything and like to play guessing games with everyone else as if they should hang on your every word and wait for the pearls to drop from your mouth. If I had remembered sooner I wouldn’t have wasted your time or mine.
For the rest, the following is the text of a letter, written from Ugandan Anglican bishops to their (white) American counterparts after the latter attempted to bribe them with offers of aid in exchange for compromise over the matter of ordaining homosexual bishops. Note again: AFRICANS writing to WHITE AMERICANS
“Considering these things, we were shocked to receive a letter from you informing us of your decision to send a delegation to the enthronement of our new Archbishop in January, and your intention for the delegation to bring aid and assistance for the people who live in desperate conditions in the camps in Gulu that you have ignored for years. Recent comments by your staff suggesting that your proposed visit demonstrates that normal relations with the Church of Uganda have made your message clear: If we fall silent about what you have done – promoting unbiblical sexual immorality – and we overturn or ignore the decision to declare a severing of relationship with the ECUSA, poor displaced persons will receive aid. Here is our response: The gospel of Jesus Christ is not for sale, even among the poorest of us who have no money. Eternal life, obedience to Jesus Christ, and conforming to his Word are more important. The Word of God is clear that you have chosen a course of separation that leads to spiritual destruction. Because we love you, we cannot let that go unanswered. If your hearts remain hardened to what the Bible clearly teaches, and your ears remain deaf to the cries of other Christians, genuine love demands that we do not pretend that everything is normal. As a result any delegation you send cannot be welcomed, received, or seated. Neither can we share fellowship nor even receive desperately needed resources. If, however, you repent and return to the Lord, it would be an occasion of great joy.”
Note well, the church of Jesus Christ in Sub-Saharan Africa is as booming and vibrant as it is uncompromising on sin. If you show up in one of their churches saying you have issues with homosexuality, they won’t chat with you about youth conflicts or the rejection you felt from your daddy. They’ll cast the demons out of you.
But in the end the goal, is not “church growth.” Jesus basically said that in the end many would fall away because of wickedness, so even if people leave the church because the church refuses to submit to homosexuality, God is still glorified and His purposes are still met. I’ve seen people redeemed from homosexuality, and it sure isn’t done by play patty-cake with the issue.
This is intended as a response to David Thomas’ 2/25/13 posting at 4:10 pm, but the “Reply” button did not appear…
Interesting you should reference the Ugandan Anglicans and their collective response to the ECUSA regarding the tension in polarizing viewpoints toward gay marriage. I attended part of the ECUSA General Convention last summer, and I can assure you that many African diocesan representatives were in attendance. Frankly, it surprised me, precisely because of the content of the letter you included. But apparently many of the African parishes relented on the ECUSA in regards to homosexual bishops…but NOT because of need for financial assistance. They did so because many of the bishops and their congregants want to maintain the ungodly, pre-colonial practice of polygamy.
Yes, so the Americans and Africans have their respective vices: acceptance of homosexuality on one side of the Atlantic, widespread polygyny on the other. So it is completely inaccurate to label the Ugandan diocese as being “uncompromising on sin” or free of “unbiblical sexual immorality.” Truth be told, the developed and developing world have just blackmailed one another for the respective sexual peccadilloes that each civilization chooses to ignore.
A cursory googling of the “Serpent Seed” doctrine turns up a guy from the 19th century (Parker), a guy from the mid 20th century (Branham) and another who’s still alive (Murray).
Parker lived 200 years ago and was a primitive Baptist. Even when he was alive his teachings never amounted to a majority view. Branham peddled his stuff in Oneness Pentecostal groups. Murray heads up “The Shepherd’s Chapel” which seems to be doing its own thing, unassociated with a larger network of churches.
So do you contend Denny (and other posters here who may belong to a Southern Baptist congregation) should be publicly rebuking and repenting of an obscure doctrine that was never a majority position of their denomination, that they themselves have never held, and that most people (even inside the church) have never heard of?
That should have read “OF these abhorrent”… And you discussed 1 of the 4.
The wager goes to $100.
I’m not betting you anything because I actually agree with you: there hasn’t been any wide spread rebuking of these doctrines (that I’m aware of).
Where we disagree is on whether such wide spread rebuking is actually warranted and whether it damages someone’s ability to comment on race issues who hasn’t rebuked them.
Thanks for agreeing… you might want to read my last response to David Thomas.
And the reason that I’m “playing the race card” on this particular issue…
Is because THOSE doctrinal errors… are related to the impasse we face in this nation today on the culture’s moral decline.
The ability to comment … the losing of the “Moral High Ground”… the “stand for the TRUTH”… are no longer valid…if you are NOT teaching the Truth.
The “secular progressive”/atheist portion of the culture… caught us in a lie…. and they are not going to let go of it.
Our ONLY hope… is to stop the lie… and tell the Truth.
It’s AMAZING what happens when someone in the bible discovers what the scripture ACTUALLY says about a matter… as opposed to what they’re suppositions were…(see King Josiah & the Ethiopian Treasurer)
On my list of 4 abhorrent doctrines… #3, The so called “Sethite View”… is the root cause of the others even being able to come into existence at all.
It is the officially endorsed doctrine of Lifeway and the HCSB bible they’ve heavily invested in for the Southern Baptist Convention…its an intregal part of their children’s and student age Sunday School curriculum.
And it’s an absolute 100% lie.
And I’ll pay $1000 to anyone who can prove me wrong.
“This has to be one of the most asinine, ignorant, and unfair articles that I have ever read—and yet it comes from the ombudsman at The Washington Post.”
The only part of that statement I would change is the word “yet.” Maybe replace it with “naturally.”
I think you may have missed Pexton’s point, from his concluding paragraph:
“Still, just as I have written that The Post should do a better job of covering and understanding the anti-abortion movement, The Post should do a better job of understanding and conveying to readers, with detachment and objectivity, the beliefs and the fears of social conservatives ”
This isn’t anything new. The issue is, but the attitude is not.
This reminds me of the obsession some on the left and right wing have with the fairness doctrine. We are not entitled to a fairness doctrine and we should expect that society and culture will increasingly turn against us. This at least has been foretold.
What has disturbed me greatly is how limited our culture war truly has become. It’s like gay marriage and abortion are the only sins we have to worry about judging from the extent of the focus and attention given to those issues. The concept of sin has lost its meaning. Homosexuality, abortion, greed, envy, malice, hatred, and everything else that Christ abhors because it all misses the mark. The comments above about society being doomed because gay marriage is upon is misses the point. Gay marriage is just a symptom of the larger problem.
I would agree wholeheartedly that it would be reductionist to say that every social ill the Church is supposed to prophetically confront boils down to “gay marriage and abortion.” I would also agree that homosexual practice in a society is a symptom–“fruit” not “root.”
My point of departure comes in with the use of the word “just” in the final sentence. Again we have the collision of rationalistic epistemologies operating in the name of Christ over against the /phenomenology/ of sin as described in Scripture. It is that phenomenology and the question of /degree/ that is in question here–just as a mild cough differs from hacking bloody sputum all over your bedsheets.
There are symptoms and then there are symptoms…
Steven, please expand on your statement that “#3, the so called Sethite View is the root cause of the others even being able to come into existence at all.”
The Sethite View of Genesis 6 did not exist before Julius Africanus, and Augustine went on to popularize it. When you teach a lie THAT early in the scripture… It’s going to reverberate throughout the rest of the book… Because the Sethite view is based on Morality, the keeping of religion and legalism. It also has a racial element that is not exactly subtle.
It takes away from the war that God declared in Genesis 3 and makes the reason for the flood all about men being “bad”.
You see the evidence of this lie in how the Evangelical church treats the rest of the world. They see it as a world full of bad and immorality. God sees it as broken hearted and captive.
The Evangelical church really could care less about the Homosexual community… All it cares about is judgement… And it (erroneously) sees God as the destroyer because of sin… Instead of the Redeemer because of sin.
Buddy Glass, if you are incapable of reading the Bible, reading the history books about the civilizations I clearly named, and concluding that “looking back” on 2013 is not necessary to realize that doom is, in fact, something we are already living, then no further explanation I would give you would ever suffice.
The irony, given the biblical concept of God “giving people over” and all that entails (a theology /absolutely/ lost on you), is palpable.
If you won’t even quantify what you mean by “doom” and “within a generation” then your declaration is basically nothing more than: “Moral decline is bad for societies.”
Initially you said doom would be forthcoming within a generation. Now doom is already here. If we’ve entered into in a persistent state of doom then what does “within a generation” even mean?
This is you, Buddy: You speak of “quantification.” You have a supremely UN-biblical mindset, yet you come here wanting to discuss biblical matters. Simply because I have determined that you are a waste of time doesn’t mean I don’t know precisely what I am saying–or that it is unclear to others. Why explain anything to you? You would respond with lots of absurd caricatures of what I said and refutations of strawmen of your own making imposed on what I’ve said. I would then point out what your error was. You would then explain (at extreme length) why you misunderstood me and how (I assume) YOUR misunderstanding was MY fault. Back where we began, it would begin all over again.
If you read and bothered to understand the Scriptures at all, you would easily grasp what I am saying. As it is, you spend all you energy seeking to blunt their salvific effect instead of submitting to their truth. You can lead a horse to water but you cannot make him drink. Those who want the truth will listen. Those who don’t blah blah blah blah.
My purposes are clear. What are yours, Buddy? Do YOU even know?
…doesn’t mean I don’t know precisely what I am saying–or that it is unclear to others.
So you know exactly how your declaration is quantifiable, but are keeping it a secret?
You would respond with lots of absurd caricatures of what I said and refutations of strawmen of your own making imposed on what I’ve said.
Make an unambiguous, detailed, falsifiable statement. For instance, “Within thirty years real per capita U.S. GDP will have been cut in half.” I can’t imagine possibly misconstruing or mischaracterizing a statement like that.
You’ve made it clear the light of day at noon is a secret to you.
Tell me, Buddy, are you a Christian? Have you read the Bible? Do you engage in the homosexual lifestyle? How can God turn a culture and its individuals over to Sodomy a la Romans 1 and then judge those very actions He turned them over to?
Finally, do you care about the truth (or even believe it can be known), or scoring points on technicalities?
ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS along with ONE good reason why I should provide any other clarification you ask for, given your track record.
Tell me, Buddy, are you a Christian?
Have you read the Bible?
Do you engage in the homosexual lifestyle?
How can God turn a culture and its individuals over to Sodomy a la Romans 1 and then judge those very actions He turned them over to?
Not sure I understand the question. Please elaborate on what you mean by “judge” here.
Finally, do you care about the truth, or scoring points on technicalities?
(or even believe it can be known)
Depends on the particular truth and the standard of knowledge we’re talking about. Generally, though, yes.
ONE good reason why I should provide any other clarification you ask for, given your track record.
Presumably you both care about the eternal destiny of my soul and consider it to be in jeopardy. Having my expectations eventually be shown to be shockingly wrong might move me in the right direction. If you provide no way for me to gauge whether my expectations are, in fact, “wrong”, then that’s not possible.
OK, well, I asked you those questions (even though I was anticipating most of the responses you gave) in part to confirm and in part to make a point. I have never (this is not an exaggeration) run into a person who claims to be a Christian and yet is so particularly contrary when it comes to biblical thought–even concerning the most basic matters. The epistemological presuppositions you clearly operate by are a combination of empiricism and a sort of wooden, ultra-technical “gotcha” approach to language. The result is that for someone who operates from a biblical mindset, dealing with you is akin to an artist communicating with computer error messages, or (from your side) a quantum physicist being required to employ his discipline to compose a love ballad.
A perfect example is your response to my question about God’s judgment on the sin of homosexuality (it might have been any sin, but this is the theme at hand). You claim to have read the Bible, yet a question I framed with the assumption that you have a basic understanding of biblical concepts and language requires “elaboration.” Baby-stepping you through an epistemology that should be assumed between people of faith is beyond tiresome and (increasingly) is the source of my exasperation with you. It surely can’t be much fun for you, either. And sorry, but I am not convinced by now that you have the slightest concern over your entrenchment or your soul and my Lord has long since commanded I shake the dust off my feet (or typing fingers) in cases like this; I write for others who may be reading, which must be a very small number by this point.
If you REALLY don’t “get it,” it is not hyperbole or diatribe when I say all this is useless. I am loath to say that, though, because it is so insulting. Unfortunately, I’m left with little choice. When you ask that the word “doom” be “quantified” when I am obviously using biblical language it lets me know we are on completely different pages, your claim to faith notwithstanding. If you had not responded this way so habitually, I believe a host of good historicist discussion might lie on the other side, just as I have had with many others. Perhaps some exercises to bridge the gap between our epistemologies would work for you, like weighing your blessings on a scale, giving the dimensions of your loneliness and despair before your conversion (use metrics, please), or counting to eternity by ones.
Once you’ve finished those drills and “quantified” those items, let me know and I’ll get right with you.
Of course, this hasn’t been /entirely/ fruitless. I’ve garnered a wonderful compliment from Mr. Lynch, who has lumped me together as corrupt with the likes of St. Augustine (and those who followed his teachings) and the entire Evangelical church, in other words, pretty much every Christian over the last 1600 years, who are all deceived, false teachers, and morally bankrupt (he’s got it all figured out now, though–whew!). I’m as thrilled to be called names by such a one as I am to be numbered with those saints…
Lumping you in with the “useful idiot” crowd?
Don’t kid yourself… You’re not all that useful.
While I think you are generalizing (i.e., the evangelical church really could care less about the homosexual community; the evangelical church sees the world as full of bad and immorality), I think difficult passages are worthy of discussion. After all, atheists like to use such passages to try to discredit the Bible’s validity. At the same time, when people disagree on doctrinal matters such as the correct understanding of Genesis 6:1-8, they should do so with humility. The ESV Study Bible’s notes state that the identities of “sons of God” and “daughters of men” are not clear. What is clear, though, is that humanity became so evil that God announced He would send judgment. It is also clear that Noah is a descendant of Seth. Where is the racial element? Where is the element of legalism? As a member of the same SoBaptist congregation for over 20 years, I have never heard any of these four doctrines preached from the pulpit. I can’t speak for others, though; even the apostles were up against false teachers and bad doctrine. Regardless of whether you believe the sons of God were humans or fallen angels, there are difficulties either way.
I am a bit taken back by the uncharitable manner in which some of you are engaging with each other with your comments and responses. Seems it borders on hate and contempt. It is rather unChristlike. In a sense, it validates the Washington Post journalist characterization of Christians. Sad actually. Just saying.