World Vision succumbs to Christian gay panic – updated*

 

The Star Observer reports…

“World Vision Australia has issued a statement .. that re-affirmed its pro-LGBTI workplace policies and differentiated the organisation from its US counterpart following the criticism the latter faced when it reversed an inclusiveness policy.

Midway through last week, the US branch of World Vision announced a workplace policy that would’ve allowed openly-LGBTI job seekers with the appropriate qualifications to apply for jobs. However, it was soon reversed.

According to World Vision US president Richard Stearns in a statement to Associated Press, the initial policy change had caused numerous major donors and other prominent supporters to threaten to withhold their support for the organisation’s child support, education and welfare programs if they didn’t revert back to their initial policy of requiring celibacy outside of marriage and maintaining “faithfulness within the Bible covenant of marriage between a man and a woman.”

While the policy rollback caused a public relations nightmare for World Vision in the US, other branches of the global Christian relief agency, such as World Vision Australia, have been operating successfully under fully inclusive workplace policies for years.

In a statement ..  to the Star Observer, World Vision Australia chief executive Tim Costello reassured that his organisation was different to that of its American counterpart when it came to LGBTI recruitment, engagement and workplace rights.

“World Vision Australia’s policy on this issue is very different from that of our colleagues in the US. We hire only (on) merit and we do not discriminate on the basis of gender or sexual orientation,” he said.

“This is in compliance with Australian law.”

Costello also explained the characteristics of federated organisations like World Vision Australia and the influence that they can have across the world in regards to transforming lives.

“We are a faith-based organisation but we are not a church. We have a singular focus: the transformation of children’s lives. Our staff support our values,” he said.

“Internationally, World Vision is a federated organisation, each country has its own separate board and leadership and its own constitution. Each country naturally also works within its own political and cultural context. World Vision United States’ decisions have no impact on any of World Vision Australia’s hiring practices.

“We serve all vulnerable children and value them as people irrespective of race, religion, sexuality, gender or ethnicity.”

World Vision Australia’s recruitment, human resource and LGBTI policies also verify Costello’s statement.”

From http://www.starobserver.com.au/news/local-news/world-vision-australia-reiterates-its-pro-lgbti-inclusiveness/121010

 

 

 

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166 thoughts on “World Vision succumbs to Christian gay panic – updated*

  1. “As a Nigerian, who is an atheist, openly bisexual and LGBT rights advocate, I am more likely to be stoned to death on the streets of Lagos, Abuja or Imo state by self-righteous Christians than by members of the Islamist terrorist group, Boko Haram.”

    Okay prove it. Go live with the friendly Boko Haram folk and see how you get on…..

    Anything to attack Christians.

    And take Bones with you too. He can give lectures about gay rights and read out his joys of anal sex thing he posted. I’m sure you’ll be made to feel right at home….

    Like

  2. In response to ++Welby

    “Did the Archbishop not read the news stories of the bombings that led to the death of these people before he visited the mass grave? Many of Boko Haram victims were school children who were murdered in their dormitories and not all of these victims were Christians. Boko Haram means ‘No to western Education”, it does not mean ‘No to Gay Marriage’.

    Suggesting that a segment of the society be deprived of their inalienable human rights because of the ridiculous and sometimes violent beliefs of another is not justifiable. It is the same silly excuse I hear people spew when they blame the growing legalisation of homophobia in many African countries on the acceptance of LGBT Rights in some western countries. If some African leaders are so stupid as to criminalize a segment of their society because of the actions of some foreign governments, they should be called out on their stupidity, not try to justify it for them. Blaming the government that is respecting the equality of their citizens for the atrocities other governments are committing in reaction to this equality, is indeed ridiculous.

    Boko Haram has stated that they are against western education and they have made this point in some cases by burning schools and setting sleeping students alight in their dormitories. Should we then ban western education in Nigeria and everywhere to prevent those fanatics who feel threatened by western education from killing innocent children?

    Why talk about same-sex marriage as if it is some kind of special rights or privileges that lesbians, gays, bisexuals and Trans are claiming and therefore subject to negotiation?

    We don’t propose outlawing the right to education or the right to freedom from discrimination because some fanatics somewhere might harm innocent people if we practice democracy and respect equality. So why do people like Justin Welby think the inalienable human rights of LGBTS should be subject to negotiation? Lgbt rights are not some sorts of special rights or privileges that can be negotiated away because some religious fanatics, be they Islam terrorists or Christian fanatics, are intolerant and won’t accept LGBT rights.

    Christianity as practiced by many is one of the major reasons gays are loathed in many African countries, maybe the Archbishop of Canterbury should start a campaign for Christianity to be outlawed everywhere. Going by his logic, we should ban Christianity so that there won’t be Christians for the likes of Boko Haram to murder. Simples, problem solved.

    As a Nigerian, who is an atheist, openly bisexual and LGBT rights advocate, I am more likely to be stoned to death on the streets of Lagos, Abuja or Imo state by self-righteous Christians than by members of the Islamist terrorist group, Boko Haram.

    Christians, not Boko Haram members, are responsible for most of the threat messages I receive daily.

    Christians, mainly Anglicans and Catholics were the ones who openly supported the ‘Jail the gays’ bill in Nigeria.”

    Christians were the ones who mobilized their members, including vulnerable children, to the public hearing to support the same-sex marriage prohibition bill.

    Christians were the ones who threatened to beat up my comrades and me at the floor of the National Assembly during the hearing of the bill.

    Christians were the ones who stripped naked and almost lynched 7 men in Imo state, suspected of homosexual behaviours.

    Christians made up majority of the mob who recently attempted to lynch 14 men and succeeded in driving them out of their homes in Girishi, Abuja.

    Christians are the ones who gleefully quote Leviticus 18:22 and are quick to use the myth of Sodom and Gomorrah as an excuse to persecute gays, lesbians, bisexual and Trans.

    Christian foreign evangelicals like the despicable Scott Lively are the ones who got African Christians to loathe gays with such scott_livelyvengeance. These Christians evangelicals not Boko Haram, are the ones who helped draft Nigeria’s and Uganda’s ‘Jail the gays’ bills.

    This kind of irresponsible propaganda by the Archbishop of Canterbury just to gain cheap points in the fight against same-sex marriage could actually prove deadly for Nigerian LGBTs and the Nigerian populace in general. Boko Haram has not come out to start a separate war against Nigerian LGBTs. Nigerian Christians are already leading the war against LGBTs rights. The Archbishop should keep his propaganda out of Nigeria. All those foreign religions have caused us enough harm as it is.

    The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, seems to be clutching at straws in an attempt to find just one reason why same-sex marriage should not be lagalised in England and Wales or anywhere for that matter. Methinks he should understand that same-sex marriage is now a reality in England and Wales, he should get over it. And most importantly, he should get his ass out of Nigeria. His likes have done enough damage in Africa; we don’t need more of their lies.”

    http://freethoughtblogs.com/yemmynisting/2014/04/07/archbishop-of-canterbury-irresponsibly-blames-the-atrocities-of-boko-haram-on-same-sex-marriage/

    Like

  3. His Grace’s remarks are very unfortunate and irresponsible. He really does appear very ignorant. To claim that gay marriage is the reason Boko Haram is persecuting Christians and hence should be stopped is extremely bizarre.

    The Archbishop of Canterbury is usually very intelligent and up with the times like ++Rowan Williams.

    ++ Welby’s comments are of the dark Ages.

    Like

  4. Okay, so bring the Christians out of Nigeria, bring them to Australia, and send Bones there and he can conduct all the gay marriages he wants. Good swap. So, you for three way lesbian marriages? There way bisexual marriages?

    Whatever. Feel free to go to Nigeria and hand out copies of that “joys of anal sex” thing you liked posting so much.

    Like

  5. According to the Archbishop of Canterbury, Boko Haram persecutes Christians because of gay marriage

    ‘Speaking on an LBC phone in, Justin Welby said he had stood by a mass grave in Nigeria of 330 Christians who had been massacred by neighbours who had justified the atrocity by saying: “If we leave a Christian community here we will all be made to become homosexual and so we will kill all the Christians.”
    “I have stood by gravesides in Africa of a group of Christians who had been attacked because of something that had happened in America. We have to listen to that. We have to be aware of the fact,” Welby said. If the Church of England celebrated gay marriages, he added, “the impact of that on Christians far from here, in South Sudan, Pakistan, Nigeria and other places would be absolutely catastrophic. Everything we say here goes round the world.”

    http://freethoughtblogs.com/yemmynisting/2014/04/07/archbishop-of-canterbury-irresponsibly-blames-the-atrocities-of-boko-haram-on-same-sex-marriage/

    Like

  6. ANyway, Bieber, Bones and Boner don’t go together. Now Roberts, Bones and Boner – that’s a possibility.

    As least now I know what kind of calendar to get Bones for next year.

    And don’t get mad! Extremely mild to what Bones dished out! lol
    ANd I’d stop right away if someone asked me to.

    So, anyone read about those nasty radical Islamic Borok Haram terrorist people?

    Whew. I almost panicked unnecessarily. I think on groupsects, I’m allowed to use terrorist and Islam in the same sentence.

    Ulike other sites, where that can start a whole flame of posts about the crusades or nasty videos or some youth leader in a country somewhere who said something naughty about the Koran.

    Good night.

    Like

  7. Thanks Greg. I’ve had a terrible day, you made me laugh for the first time in two days. Pity I was in a train!

    Like

  8. “Bigotry and evangelical Christianity go hand in hand.
    Fits together like a glove.”

    Another amazing statement from Talmud Bones. lol

    Like

  9. “Must be just another anti-Semite who enjoys publishing lies about Jews?”
    No, that would be your idol, Billy.”

    no that would be you! Do you want your Talmud stuff quoted? Vicious….

    “Though I do recall:
    Q – “Gays should all just go and live on an Island.”

    Good memory. I said that. I’ll say it again too in jest. Gays and liberals and Justin Bieber and Bones.
    Party on!

    okay, now you can quote me to Justin Bieber and see if he’ll sue me and start crying! lol

    And yes, I have loads more respect for Billy than Bully Boy Bones the anti-semite! Not my idol.
    It’s quite different to you and Roberts! lol
    I have no posters….

    Like

  10. Below the belt, Bones.

    Q’s remark was satyrical in context with the thread, which was quite a healthy debate on the issue of priests in Denmark being pressured into marrying same sex couples.

    Q’s quip was in reference to the gay lobby putting pressure on Gloria Jeans for making a donation to ACL, which is exactly the same bullying tactic you are arguing against here, only the shoe is on the other foot.

    My understanding of Q’s remark was that same sex couples on their own islands would die out in one generation entirely because they were working against the rules of nature. It was irony, satire, not a serious suggestion. At worse in poor taste or not that funny, but the irony is clear.

    Maybe you need to tone down your language somewhat.

    Like

  11. Bones, go to your local synagogue and show them the fruits of your anti-Talmud .. Eh …. “Research” lol
    And ask them if they are more offended by Billy Graham or your anti-Semite web …activity…

    I think Billy will come out on top.

    Billy Graham vs Bones?

    Pitiful!

    Like

  12. Bones will go back to 1972 to bring up dirt on Billy Graham one of the most respected figures in US history, while he himself quotes the vilest of lies from one of the worst anti-Semite sites on the planet.

    His hypocrisy is only exceeded by his anti- Jewish propaganda!

    Unless of course bones is not an anti- Semite but is just completely gullible and stupid?
    But that can’t be. After all, he’s a teacher from Bundaberg…..

    Must be just another anti-Semite who enjoys publishing lies about Jews?

    Like

  13. Maybe Franklin takes after his Dad

    Billy Graham and Richard Nixon

    Oval Office Transcript from February 1, 1972

    Excerpts from a Chicago Tribune story

    Nixon, Graham anti-Semitism on tape
    President, pastor recorded views in 1972 meeting
    By James Warren
    Tribune staff reporter
    Chicago Tribune; Mar 1, 2002; pg. 8

    March 1, 2002

    Rev. Billy Graham openly voiced a belief that Jews control the American media, calling it a “stranglehold” during a 1972 conversation with President Richard Nixon, according to a tape of the Oval Office meeting released Thursday by the National Archives.

    “This stranglehold has got to be broken or the country’s going down the drain,” the nation’s best-known preacher declared as he agreed with a stream of bigoted Nixon comments about Jews and their perceived influence in American life.

    “You believe that?” Nixon says after the “stranglehold” comment.

    “Yes, sir,” Graham says.

    “Oh, boy,” replies Nixon. “So do I. I can’t ever say that but I believe it.”

    “No, but if you get elected a second time, then we might be able to do something,” Graham replies.

    Later, Graham mentions that he has friends in the media who are Jewish, saying they “swarm around me and are friendly to me.” But, he confides to Nixon, “They don’t know how I really feel about what they’re doing to this country.”
    . . .
    The Nixon-Graham remarks came during a 90-minute session after a prayer breakfast the men attended on Feb. 1, 1972.
    . . .

    Haldeman’s diaries noted the conversation. He wrote that there was discussion “of the terrible problem arising from the total Jewish domination of the media, and agreement that this was something that would have to be dealt with.”

    He continues, “Graham has the strong feeling that the Bible says there are satanic Jews and there’s where our problem arises.” No such comments about the Bible are found on the tape released Thursday but, because it contains several long deletions, it’s believed such remarks were excised.

    The lengthy chat opens with Graham praising Nixon’s prayer breakfast remarks. “There were a lot of people in tears when you finished this morning and it’s very moving. That’s the best I’ve heard you at one of those breakfast things.”

    After offering Nixon tips on preparing himself for big speeches, as well as strategy for his re-election campaign, Graham notes that he has been invited to lunch with editors of Time magazine. “I was quite amazed since this is the first time I’ve heard from Time since [Time founder] Henry Luce died.”

    “You meet with all their editors, you better take your Jewish beanie,” Haldeman says.

    Graham laughs. “Is that right? I don’t know any of them now.”

    Hollywood and the media

    Nixon then broaches a subject about which “we can’t talk about it publicly,” namely Jewish influence in Hollywood and the media. He cites Paul Keyes, a political conservative who is executive producer of the NBC hit, “Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In,” as telling him that “11 of the 12 writers are Jewish.”

    “That right?” says Graham, prompting Nixon to claim that Life magazine, Newsweek, The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and others, are “totally dominated by the Jews.” He calls network TV anchors Howard K. Smith, David Brinkley and Walter Cronkite “front men who may not be of that persuasion,” but that their writers are “95 percent Jewish.”

    Nixon demurs that this does not mean “that all the Jews are bad” but that most are left-wing radicals who want “peace at any price except where support for Israel is concerned. The best Jews are actually the Israeli Jews.”

    “That’s right,” agrees Graham, who later concurs with a Nixon assertion that a “powerful bloc” of Jews confronts Nixon in the media. “And they’re the ones putting out the pornographic stuff,” Graham adds.

    Nixon contends that “every Democratic candidate will owe his election to Jewish people,” but he won’t.
    . . .

    A deletion then follows with the next voice heard being that of Graham, who alludes to A.M. Rosenthal, managing editor of The New York Times.

    “But I have to lean a little bit, you know. I go and see friend of Mr. Rosenthal at The New York Times, and people of that sort. And all, I don’t mean all the Jews, but a lot of the Jews are great friends of mine. They swarm around me and are friendly to me. Because they know I am friendly to Israel and so forth. They don’t know how I really feel about what they’re doing to this country.”

    Nixon says, “You must not let them know.”

    The conversation turns to religious magazines, postal rates and Nixon’s uncharitable thoughts on certain Cabinet members. Graham then leaves and, a few minutes later, Nixon tells Haldeman, “You know it was good we got this point about the Jews across.”

    . . .

    http://www.rbvincent.com/wfgrmn.htm

    Like

  14. 16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21 envy,[d] drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

    25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.

    Like

  15. “Gee, it’s proud to be an Aussie at times.”

    At last, Bones has said something positive!!!!
    Release the pigeons!

    Like

  16. “we do not discriminate on the basis of gender or sexual orientation,…We serve all vulnerable children and value them as people irrespective of race, religion, sexuality, gender or ethnicity.”

    Ssssshhhhh

    Don’t tell American Evangelicals that.

    Gee, it’s proud to be an Aussie at times.

    Like

  17. “Poor Q, who drools in his own righteousness.”

    No, I’ve never said I’m righteous. Lying again.

    “Can’t answer basic questions.”
    I answered all of them. Lying again.

    “Why do Evangelicals lie about people so much?”
    They don’t. Why did you copy and paste lies about the Jews from that anti-semitic hate site?
    Why? Seriously. Why? Do you really hate Jews or are you just totally incompetent at “internet research”?

    “And they have the gall to preach to the rest of the community.”
    You do more preaching than anyone.

    “To become like them. Or else”
    Nobody said that.

    “We can all see your bullshit.”
    Who’s we? Who? Bones? The one who was so offensive that he was threatened with banning.
    Remember? lol

    “And it stinks, though you think you smell like roses.”
    I never said I think I smell like roses. Is that lying? Strawman? Slander? Or just your weird imagination on overdrive. I’m not good at all.

    “Btw if you don’t know about Russia’s gay laws than f**k off and find out.”
    rotfl

    I love that. So predictable. Whenever Bones is beat he starts with swearing.
    Tries to be clever, Gets refuted, then when he’s got nothing left, he starts swearing.
    lol
    What next? Coming back with the old Ian Roberts threats?
    Yes Bones. Ian Roberts could beat me up. And you could get all aroused thinking about it.

    Happy?
    lol

    Take a chill pill. And stop lying. And stay away from the anti-semitic hate sites.

    Like

  18. Poor Q, who drools in his own righteousness.

    Can’t answer basic questions.

    Why do Evangelicals lie about people so much?

    And they have the gall to preach to the rest of the community.

    To become like them. Or else.

    What effontery.

    We can all see your bullshit.

    And it stinks, though you think you smell like roses.

    Btw if you don’t know about Russia’s gay laws than f**k off and find out.

    Like

  19. “Btw I’ve no doubt that a lot of the animosity towards Obama is racially motivated.”

    What a slanderous thing to say about evangelicals. I don’t know any evangelicals personally – not one, who would not vote for a black candidate who they agree with politically.

    You are spreading lies and sowing discord. Evangelical and charismatic churches have a better mix of blacks and whites than other groups in the US.
    More than liberal churches. Go to mega churches and look at the staff.

    Vivacious lies Bones. Look at the black candidate – the doctor. Evangelicals aren’t against him. why? Because what matters to evangelicals is not color,

    Now this article you copy and posted . And may I say congratulations. Much better than others from weird websites you come up with.
    So Franklin publicly apologizes – not for lying , but for expressing an opinion that he now says is wrong, that used to be a good thing.
    But no, Bully Boy Bones from Bundaberg still wants an occasion to attack, vilify and criticize. And then accuse of racism! Black friends of Frankin would be offended by you,

    Bones you are the most unforgiving conscious slanderous man I’ve met.

    If you are representative of what ex-Christians become, people need to be warned. I know evangelicals. None as nasty and full of hate as you.

    Like

  20. “Poor Q.”
    Thanks. But I’m okay.

    “We should be afraid of sharia law. We should be absolutely afraid of it.
    Sounds like fear to me.”

    Well I fear for society if Sharia Law ever took over. I don’t think it will. But I didn’t think Boned should change from someone who thought gay sex was sin and believed in the resurrection to berating and attacking anyone who said gay sex was sin and that he didn’t know what he believed and was happy being an ex-Christian. I also believed gays years ago when they said they weren’t interested in marriage rights. So I’ve been wrong before. Or deceived?

    “How big of an issue is sharia law in the US or Australia?”

    I don’t know. But Muslims push for it in other countries, and if demographics change who knows what could happen in 30 years. We are learning they you have to look 30 years ahead. 30 years ago nobody was talking about gay marriage seriously in the US. Not even 20. Actually Obama was against in 10 years ago. No – 5. And Bones said he was. Christian who loved NT Wright 2 years ago. So, things change. Anything can happen.

    “Just another reason to take a dump on Muslims.”
    No, you are attacking a mans heart.
    Slanderous bully.

    “Do you agree that:
    Homosexual couples seek to ‘recruit’ children?”

    I don’t think all of them do. But did you read the case about the gay couple who adopted children then sexually abused them? No? Somehow it didn’t make groupsects news…..

    “Children are better off in an orphanage than with gay parents?”

    Most people would have agreed with that statement until recently. But I know many heterosexual couples in Australia who were unable to adopt children.
    Yes, I believe that it is better for children to be put in a family with loving heterosexual parents than one with two gay men. And still, most of the planet agrees with me.

    “Russia is leading the way as regards to legislating against gays?”
    I’m not familiar with their legislation. I’m against gays adopting and marrying. Crucify me!

    “It is better to withdraw your sponsorship than continue providing on the basis their MIGHT be a gay person involved?”
    There was no issue about this until a month ago. But it’s been solved and the man involved apologized. Though the “gay mafia” will keep attacking. Was that Bill Maher’s term? Apt!

    “(Though there might be anyway cos other World Vision Agencies like Australia aren’t as scared of bigots)”
    You have just called many wonderful people bigots – the majority if the people supporting kids. There is no end to the vicious meanness of Bully Boy Bones.

    “Obama has turned his back on ‘God and His standards’?”
    In terms of sexual morality – yes

    ” (Whereas God’s standard is to declare war and invade and kill like the previous president)”
    So now you agree that Obama has turned against God?? Because of the use of Drones? Or have you changed and now you secretly are against blacks?

    Or are you just trying to dump on Franklin because he’s a hated evangelical – like your wife and old friends?

    “Now one can only assume these lies, that’s what they are, they’re lies and they’re lies designed to demonise and discredit.”

    No you assume too much. Like always . Like when you assumed that horrible anti-Semitic vile website article about the Talmud was correct. You really have to learn to distrust your assumptions. Bundaberg teacher believes Fake anti- Jewish Talmud propaganda. ….
    Hey, that would make a good title for a groupsects new report. Wow. And this man talks about lies???? Lol
    No, make that crying out loud. You really should apologize at your nearest synagogue. Talk about vile!

    “So they’re vicious lies being put forward by the spokespeople for God.”

    No, no, no. You need medication.

    “The only reason such lies are being told, such cruelty, viciousness and wickedness, can only be out of fear or hate, no matter how they try to wrap it.”

    Cruelty, Viciousness and Wickedness”
    Bones motto!
    No, you are a slanderer of the highest order. So did you go and apologize at the synagogue for cruelly spreading vivacious and wicked lies about the Talmud and Jews?
    No? Not enough time between ant-evangelical posts?
    Sick man. The hate will kill you Bones.

    Like

  21. Btw I’ve no doubt that a lot of the animosity towards Obama is racially motivated.

    Franklin Graham Apologizes To Obama For Questioning His Faith Following Criticisms Of Sowing Racial Discord

    WASHINGTON (RNS) Evangelist Franklin Graham apologized Tuesday (Feb. 28) to President Obama for questioning his Christian faith and said religion has “nothing to do” with Graham’s decision not to support Obama’s re-election.

    Graham’s apology came after a group of prominent black religious leaders criticized the evangelist for saying he did not know whether Obama is a Christian and suggesting that Islamic law considers him to be a Muslim.

    Graham, president of the relief organization Samaritan’s Purse and the son of famed evangelist Billy Graham, said he now accepts Obama’s declarations that he is a Christian.

    “I regret any comments I have ever made which may have cast any doubt on the personal faith of our president, Mr. Obama,” he said in a statement.

    “I apologize to him and to any I have offended for not better articulating my reason for not supporting him in this election — for his faith has nothing to do with my consideration of him as a candidate.”

    More than a dozen members of a religious subgroup of the NAACP had accused Graham of “bearing false witness” and fomenting racial discord.

    “We can disagree about what it means to be a Christian engaged in politics, but Christians should not bear false witness,” the NAACP statement said. “We are also concerned that Rev. Graham’s comments can be used to encourage racism.”

    When asked in a recent MSNBC interview if Obama was a Christian, Graham responded, “I cannot answer that question for anybody.” He went on to say that because Obama’s father was a Muslim, “under Islamic law, the Muslim world sees Barack Obama as a Muslim.”

    By contrast, Graham said there is “no question” that GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum is a “man of faith” because “his values are so clear on moral issues.” Santorum has also faced criticism for saying the president has a “phony theology” that is unbiblical.

    “By his statements, Rev. Graham seems to be aligning himself with those who use faith as a weapon of political division,” the NAACP said. “These kinds of comments could have enormous negative effects for America and are especially harmful to the Christian witness.”

    Signatories of the open letter included presidents of the National Baptist Convention, USA; the National Baptist Convention of America; the Progressive National Baptist Convention; as well as bishops of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church and the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/28/franklin-graham-apologize-obama-faith-race_n_1307758.html

    Wonder why Franklin Graham lied about Obama?

    Like

  22. Poor Q.

    We should be afraid of sharia law. We should be absolutely afraid of it.

    Sounds like fear to me.

    How big of an issue is sharia law in the US or Australia? Just another reason to take a dump on Muslims.

    Do you agree that:

    Homosexual couples seek to ‘recruit’ children?

    Children are better off in an orphanage than with gay parents?

    Russia is leading the way as regards to legislating against gays?

    It is better to withdraw your sponsorship than continue providing on the basis their MIGHT be a gay person involved? (Though there might be anyway cos other World Vision Agencies like Australia aren’t as scared of bigots)

    Obama has turned his back on ‘God and His standards’? (Whereas God’s standard is to declare war and invade and kill like the previous president)

    Now one can only assume these lies, that’s what they are, they’re lies and they’re lies designed to demonise and discredit. So they’re vicious lies being put forward by the spokespeople for God.

    The only reason such lies are being told, such cruelty, viciousness and wickedness, can only be out of fear or hate, no matter how they try to wrap it.

    Like

  23. I know your last post isn’t addressed to me but I’ll point something out.

    “Evangelicals playing the fear card:
    Be very afraid of gays, Muslims, liberals, black presidents….”

    No that’s not right. It’s lying.
    Bones, you’re misrepresenting evangelicals.
    Evangelicals are mostly against gay marriage. Obama was too until 3 years ago. Your wife might be. I don’t think Obama was evil when he wasn’t for gay marriage.

    Muslims? Graham is against sharia law. So am I, and so are many people – religious or not.

    Liberals? Evangelicals aren’t scared of them.
    Black Presidents?? See that is just lying!
    You will lie and slander in order to spew your hatred of the people you used to love.
    No evangelicals were against Condi Rice when she was appointed by the Bush admin.
    There are black men who evangelicals will probably support in the next election. Maybe if you’re really that ignorant about US politics you shouldn’t comment.

    If you are just lying and playing the race card in order to attack, it’s pathetic. If it’s just due to a lack of knowledge about US political candidates due to your living in the country , then I suggest you read up.
    Once again, you have tried to be clever but just embarrassed yourself.

    Read more. Copying and pasting is fine, but reading and understanding is also necessary.
    Maybe you should see a doctor?

    Like

  24. “Oh poor Q.Getting ready to run off and have a sook and a sulk because no one shares your hatred of gays.”

    Lol no. I don’t hate gays. Stop slandering me and lying. I’ve had lunch with two different gay people recently. Strange man. And I’m not sulking at all.
    Although you did when you your behavior was criticized. So don’t start up again.

    “Wish I had a dollar for everytime you did that. I’d be richer than TD Jakes.

    Really. Tell you what. You give me your assets. And I’ll give you a dollar for the times I’ve sulked because people don’t share my hatred of gays.
    You’ll have to declare bankruptcy.
    Silly man! Lol

    “I’m surprised you don’t remember threatening to bash me.”

    Yep. Can’t remember. But if it was the time you kept swearing and saying I was gay, and kept talking about gay footballers …. Was that the time?
    Or after you posted fake stuff about the Talmud, saying Jews like sex with children from the anti-Semitic hate site?
    Well, you deserved at least a clip in the ear for that!

    “You must do that a lot then.”
    No. Not at all. Your logic is faulty.

    “That’s the evangelical world 4 ya.”
    I don’t think so. You were an evangelical. Did you threaten to bash people? Or did you only turn obnoxious and slanderous since you stopped believing?

    Anyway, try and be nice.

    Like

  25. Where Franklin Graham Has Gone Wrong

    By Peter Wehner

    The evangelist Franklin Graham had quite a run last week.

    In interviews and statements, he praised Russian president Vladimir Putin’s anti-gay policies. “I agreed with Putin. I think protecting his nation’s children, I think, was a pretty smart thing to do,” Graham told the Charlotte Observer’s Tim Funk. “I was very clear. I supported Putin in his decision to protect his nation’s children. And I think our Congress needs to do more in protecting our children.”

    When Graham said gays and lesbians cannot have children, Funk pointed out that they could adopt. To which Graham responded, “Yeah, they can recruit.” Refusing to use the word “adopt,” he added, “You can adopt a child into a marriage but you can also recruit children into your cause.”

    Like many other evangelical leaders, the Reverend Graham criticized the decision by World Vision to hire people in same-sex relationships. But unlike some others, Graham’s language was particularly shrill, saying, “It’s obvious that World Vision does not believe the Bible… I’m just heartbroken and I’m sickened that World Vision has taken this ungodly position.” (World Vision subsequently reversed its position.)

    In talking about the Obama administration, Graham said they “are anti-Christ in what they say and in what they do.” (In his Decision article, Graham wrote, “Our president and his attorney general have turned their backs on God and His standards.” In the past he seemed unsure about whether Mr. Obama was born in the United States, refused to accept Mr. Obama’s claim that he’s a Christian and couldn’t rule out the president is a Muslim. Graham later apologized for questioning the faith of President Obama.)

    When asked about how America can reverse its moral slide, Graham answered, “This is a good question. When you look at Scripture, when Israel turned their backs on God – and that’s what we as a nation have done and are doing – there was usually some type of calamity. There was a famine, there was a persecution from their neighbors, nations would come in and overrun them and destroy them.”

    In answering a question about the “demonization” of Muslims in America, and in reaction to Funk’s statement that “Christians in this country have opposed the building of mosques and are worried about sharia laws,” Graham said, “We should be afraid of sharia law. We should be absolutely afraid of it. No question about it. Because there’s no tolerance in sharia law. It persecutes those that don’t believe in Islam. And I would say to Muslims in this country, if they want to practice sharia law, go back to where you came from, to those nations that recognize sharia law.”

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/philosophicalfragments/2014/03/31/where-franklin-graham-has-gone-wrong/

    Evangelicals playing the fear card:

    Be very afraid of gays, Muslims, liberals, black presidents….

    Accept any lie to justify your worldview.

    I’ll still send a shoebox to Graham’s Samaritan’s Purse, even though he is a nutter and getting very rich out of it.

    Like

  26. Oh poor Q.

    Getting ready to run off and have a sook and a sulk because no one shares your hatred of gays.

    Wish I had a dollar for everytime you did that. I’d be richer than TD Jakes.

    I’m surprised you don’t remember threatening to bash me.

    You must do that a lot then.

    That’s the evangelical world 4 ya.

    Like

  27. PS Bones. Don’t bother quoting from the Protocols either. It will just make you look more foolish.
    It’s ..eh….a fake. Just like the dribble you posted from that anti-semitic hate site.
    iow, it was a nasty make believe world. Yep, very nasty! In fact, you should probably have gone and apologised at your local synagogue.

    Now, pipe down! lol

    Like

  28. “You mean where I was accused of being a paedophile because I refused to engage in bashing Muslims.”

    What? See you are clearly insane! I have no idea what you’re talking about.

    “I’m over that.”

    Over what? You are crazy Bones. “over what?” If you are talking about signposts02, you were the worst attacker and slanderer of all. And now you still crying about it? Look, if you promise to behave yourself, you can still comment there. Just tone it down. And be as forgiving as everyone has been with you when you’ve been in a spiteful rage.

    “You can have your own little nasty make believe world to yourself”

    Okay, not sure what that means. Are you referring to Christianity? A belief in God? Fine, you don’t believe anything. No problem. I just pointed out that Mike you you quoted didn’t need to cry over his Bloody Mary, because he wasn’t thinking properly when he watched that interview. And I still don’t know if you watched it. Which is normal – you copy and paste lots of things. But if you want to bring up things…? “I refused to engage in bashing Muslims” . Perhaps, but you sure don’t hold back bashing Jews? Remember your great post from the anti-Semitic website? Remember? You accused Jew of all believing in pedophilia. So, I think you of all people should drop the crocodile tears!!

    “and bask in your own ‘righteousness’.”

    BOnes. shut up. I don’t think I’m righteous. That’s you! You spend all your time attacking people – Jews, Christians, you name it.

    I don’t judge you for being an ex-Christian. That’s fine. But, when you’re pulled up over things, just answer normally.

    And maybe take some pills… anyway. Chill out man.

    Like

  29. The Evangelical worldview:

    1) Kids are better off with no parents than gay parents.

    On This Week with George Stephanopoulos Sunday, during a discussion of Russian President Vladimir Putin prohibiting same-sex adoption, former Christian Coalition director Ralph Reed was asked, “Would you rather have a child sitting in an orphanage than have gay parents?” Reed would not say that a child being adopted by gays would be better off. “I think the social science is just simply not in yet on same-sex couples,” he said. “I think the law has every right to set an ideal. And the ideal is a mother and a father.”

    Cokie Robert’s take on the same issue: “But the social science is also irrefutable that a child raised in an orphanage is in much worse shape than a child raised in a home. And the fact that people are willing to take these children and raise them, and raise them in a loving way, is clearly better for these children.”

    http://www.drudge.com/news/178281/ralph-reed-better-no-parents-than-gay-ones

    2) Oh and kids are better off dead than being helped by gays.

    I wish I could be that righteous.

    Like

  30. You mean where I was accused of being a paedophile because I refused to engage in bashing Muslims.

    Nah.

    I’m over that.

    You can have your own little nasty make believe world to yourself and bask in your own ‘righteousness’.

    Like

  31. And for the record, yes, you have been way more viscous and nasty. So nasty that Greg threatened to ban you –which of course is why you went into your big sulk……..
    How dare he? You thought you were on some team or something.

    Just grow up. It’s okay to reject Christ and lose your faith. You’re not the only one. And you’r not the only man who is in love with Ian Roberts. I’m sure he’s flattered.

    Just calm down.

    Like

  32. TO be honest I can’t even remember. But you are still going on about that????

    What a wuss. And you kept going on an on about ridiculous stuff anyway.

    So you accuse me of bashing gays? Because you say I threatened to bash you? So now you’re not only an ex-christian but an ex-christian gay? You just keep changing.

    But you just keep bringing stuff up from ages ago. Pathetic. Really pathetic. And you’ve said so much horrible stuff that you were threatened with being banned so stop being such a little fairy.

    But anyway, I refuted everything you said below, All you’ve got is trying to talk about a time when you kept raving about how much you were in love with Ian Roberts or something right?

    lol

    Okay, Bones, if you can find where I threatened to literally bash you in person and the context I’ll apologise and then you can drop it. And get back to whatever you were whinging about.

    You need to seek help.

    Like

  33. Franklin Graham wants America to be like this. Oh and Q. Let’s not forget the Evangelical influence on Uganda and their antigay laws.

    Discrimination in Russia: Arrests for Violation of St. Petersburg Anti-Gay Law

    In St. Petersburg, Russia, two men were arrested on Thursday for holding up a sign reading “Homosexuality Is Normal.” It marks the first arrests on the strength of the city’s new law against disseminating information on homosexuality.

    Homophobia remains widespread in Russia, and it is an open secret in the country that many public figures have sought to hide their sexual preferences by entering into marriages of convenience. The Russian Orthodox Church views homosexuality as a sin, and it was only in 1999 that homosexuality was stricken from the list of mental illnesses in the country.

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/two-arrested-in-st-petersburg-for-violating-city-s-new-anti-gay-law-a-826199.html

    If only I was a righteous as Franklin Graham. Or Vladimir Putin.

    Like

  34. You’ve really turned vicious and nasty…

    I haven’t threatened to bash someone on a Christian blog.

    Can you say the same?

    Like

  35. Bones,

    Your mocking tone regarding the concept of righteousness and holiness says a lot about your fundamental misunderstanding of who Christ is and what He is about.

    Ironic how you repeatedly quote Mathew 5:31-32, and like to accuse Pentecostals of ignoring Jesus’ teaching on divorce, yet you ignore the gravity and meaning of what Jesus is teaching us throughout Matthew chapter 5. Namely that righteousness involves responding to every situation in life in a way that fulfils God’s law, not just externally, but internally as well.

    Jesus sets a higher ideal, that outward adherence is not enough, it’s the state of the heart, and whether our heart intentions are aligning with God’s law and God’s will for us.

    This website quote explains Mathew 5:27-32 pretty well:

    “What does Jesus mean when he says “pluck out your eye “ or “cut off your hand and throw it away” if it leads you to sin? Is he exaggerating here? Jesus used forceful language to urge his disciples to choose for life — a life of joy and happiness with God — rather than for death — an unending life of horrible misery and separation from the loving presence of an all-good God. Jesus set before his disciples the one goal in life that is worth any sacrifice and that goal is the conformity of our will with God and what he desires for our well-being and happiness with him. Just as a doctor might remove a limb or some part of the body in order to preserve the life of the whole body, so we must be ready to part with anything that causes us to sin and which inevitably leads to spiritual death. Jesus warns us of the terrible responsibility that we must set no stumbling block in the way of another, that is, not give offense or bad example that might lead another to sin. The young in faith are especially vulnerable to the bad example of those who should be passing on the faith.”

    But by now I anticipate you have already moulded Jesus into your own self help guru, who was not divine, rather he was a sinner, who never actually performed miracles, nor was he resurrected, but hey who cares, he gives us some good guidelines to live a fulfilling life.

    Like

  36. “You mean like bashing gays. Q’s into that.”

    I have never bashed a gay. Are you mentally ill or something?
    Had lunch with a few homosexuals recently. I got on fine with them.

    You’ve really turned vicious and nasty since you stopped being a Christian.

    Like

  37. “I see Q still thinks that gays are after his kids.”
    No, wrong again. Nothing of the sort. Just saying that this Mike’s spiel was way over the top and dishonest to boot.

    “These Christians who are scared of gays obviously don’t have much faith than to be terrified of 1% of the population.”

    I don’t know any Christians who are scared of gays. I don’t think Franklin Graham is either. So they are only 1%? The homosexuals would argue with you over that.

    “Gays are more powerful than Jesus.”

    I disagree. Perhaps in your mind they are. I think Jesus is more powerful than homosexuals and bisexuals.

    “The demons are in Christian minds.”

    Don’t know what you’re going on about. Did you watch the interview that crying Mike got so enraged about?

    But that’s the point that he is missing. There was once a time when at Easter nationally known ministers might have been interviewed. Now, that just keep getting asked about homosexual marriage, as does any Christian when they go on TV. Never used to be the case. All this over 1%.

    So, did you actually watch the video?

    Oh, back to the scared of gays? Maybe some UK Christians are. A nursery teacher was dismissed because her lesbian teacher “friend” kept asking her what she thought the Bible said about homosexuals.

    Anyway, hope you had a Happy Easter and didn’t spend it crying like Mike.

    Like

  38. At the end of the day if a person says they are a christian you would expect some sort of evidence they are living a decent life and showing love to others without being perfect or super religious

    You mean like bashing gays.

    Q’s into that.

    He’s really righteous.

    So is Franklin Graham. Apparently gays don’t adopt kids, they ‘recruit’ kids.

    Franklin Graham defends Vladimir Putin, gay propaganda law

    http://www.washingtonblade.com/2014/04/21/franklin-graham-defends-vladimir-putin-gay-propaganda-law/

    I wish I was as righteous as them.

    Like

  39. These Christians who are scared of gays obviously don’t have much faith than to be terrified of 1% of the population.

    Gays are more powerful than Jesus.

    The demons are in Christian minds.

    Like

  40. Bones
    In regard to non believers there are many moral ones and some are more moral than many christians.
    Biblically speaking righteousness/holiness is applied to those who have accepted Christ as their saviour.
    In one sense morality and righteousness are similar but from a biblical view a moral person may be decent but not biblically righteous

    At the end of the day if a person says they are a christian you would expect some sort of evidence they are living a decent life and showing love to others without being perfect or super religious

    Like

  41. ” spent almost half of their allotted time explicitly and unreservedly demonizing gay people.”

    Most people on the planet would watch that interview and come to a completely different point of view.
    Ministers were asked questions and basically replied like ministers would have replied for decades.

    “as Franklin Graham is talking about how gay people are welcomed into heaven, as long as they “repent and turn,” the same as any sinner.”
    Pretty standard for Franklin, Billy, the Pope and most Christians.

    “It was Easter Sunday. And on national television, all these Christian leaders wanted to talk about was how evil and destructive people like me are.Easter morning. And the message they were moved to proclaim to the world was: Jesus is Risen. Protect our children from evil gays. Hallelujah.”

    First of all, they didn’t spend half the allotted time. That’s simply not true. They kept getting asked about it. Repeatedly. Secondly, the interview was taped before Easter. Was gay Mike even listening to the program or had the Bloody Mary’s taken over his brain?

    “I thought of my grandmother Mernie. I poured myself a Bloody Mary. And I cried.”
    So was Mernie in favor of homosexual marriage? If she wasn’t would he have called Mernie evil like he called Franklin Graham evil for simply saying exactly the same thing that Billy Graham always said? We don’t know because Mike the homosexual is too busy crying….

    Mike should have spent Easter hiding or hunting for Easter eggs instead of drinking Bloody Mary’s and crying. Maybe a 12 step program would be good. As for the crying…? Man up mike!

    Like

  42. Greg, righteousness is of faith, not works, and faith works by love. That is scripture.

    Romans 4:1-8
    What then shall we say that Abraham our father has found according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. For what does the Scripture say? “ Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt. But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness, just as David also describes the blessedness of the man to whom God imputes righteousness apart from works: “ Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, And whose sins are covered; Blessed is the man to whom the Lord shall not impute sin.”

    Galatians 5:6
    For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love.

    Faith isn’t negated or replaced by love. It is one of three enduring qualities – faith, hope and love, of which love is the greatest.

    1 Corinthians 13:13
    And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

    Consider the beatitudes, which speak of mercy, love, righteousness and holiness.

    Matthew 5:3-12
    “ Blessed are the poor in spirit,
    For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
    Blessed are those who mourn,
    For they shall be comforted.
    Blessed are the meek,
    For they shall inherit the earth.
    Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
    For they shall be filled.
    Blessed are the merciful,
    For they shall obtain mercy.
    Blessed are the pure in heart,
    For they shall see God.
    Blessed are the peacemakers,
    For they shall be called sons of God.
    Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness ’ sake,
    For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
    “Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

    Like

  43. Btw Bill, it’s good that you turned your life around.

    Bill do you think non-Christian people who don’t sell drugs, steal, fornicate or bash people up are holy and righteous?

    Maybe they do it out of love for their fellow human.

    Maybe you’re onto something there.

    Like

  44. After I had faith to believe in Jesus I stopped stealing, fornicating, selling drugs and punching people in the head.

    I didn’t know you were a pastor!

    Like

  45. Greg
    After I had faith to believe in Jesus I stopped stealing, fornicating, selling drugs and punching people in the head.
    Did I still want to fornicate and punch a few people …of course but I wanted to please God with my lifestyle and chose to love others instead of being selfish.
    Isn’t that what holiness and righteousness is all about …knowing that God has changed you internally and you choose to do the right thing by your actions.

    Do some people including some christians need a punch in the head….definitely but I decided to refrain 🙂

    Like

  46. Hosanna! Jesus is Risen! Let us bash some gays.

    [The below was written by my friend Mike Moore,* who is gay.]

    Easter when I was a young boy are among my richest memories. My Mom and I lived with my grandparents in the south, at a time when on Easter Sunday men got into their new summer suits, and boys were put into little blue blazers with snappy ties. Moms dressed like Jackie Kennedy in pastel suits and pillbox hats adorned with silk flowers. Girls were put into frilly, fully-meringue dresses and patent leather shoes. (I still feel sorry for them.) And woe to those poor same-sex siblings, made to wear matching outfits. The Help were off on Sundays, of course (we didn’t live in Mississippi, for god’s sake), but inevitably they would drop by with some special Easter treat, dressed to the nines with gigantic hats that offered sun protection for every kid within a six-foot radius.

    Easter baskets and egg hunts. Special early supper with the grown-ups. It was all so good.
    By far the biggest deal of the day to me was my role at church. My grandmother, Mernie, was the organist and choir master at our Episcopal church, and on Easters, she “opened-up” that huge pipe organ in a way that chest-rattlingly announced that Easter was no ordinary Sunday. Mernie was a dervish: fingers would be flying, playing the upper and lower keyboards, pulling and pushing the stops, feet pumping pedals. My job was to stand quietly by the side of the organ while she brought Bach to life. In contrast to the complex chaos of her movements, she would glance at me and smile, entirely at ease, as if she were dinking out “Heart and Soul,” and give me the slightest of nods—my signal to turn the page of the sheet music. The entire Easter service depended upon my doing that right!

    By 1967 my Mom and my new Dad had moved us to California. Easter still meant Sunday services, but some of the magic was gone. Soaring music became dour hymns. No grandparents. And no big black women in even bigger hats dropping off coconut cakes and baskets of goodies. However, my Dad invented a wonderful new Easter for me and my soon-to-arrive little brother. The man had a wicked talent for hiding Easter eggs, and he created the annual Egg Off, a great race to find your eggs first and win. (Hey, wait a minute: I don’t recall an actual prize for winning the Egg Off What a gyp. But a super fun gyp.)

    By the early 1970′s Easter had kind of fallen off the radar. If we went to church, I don’t really remember. I do remember still having the Egg Off, but afterwards it was Off to the Beach. In the evenings it was lamb, mint jelly, and homemade southern biscuits for dinner. Not like my grandparents’ Easters, but great days, always.

    By the late 70′s, evangelical Christianity had been brought into our home, and at 16, I happily joined in. Easter again became a day of joy and celebration of Jesus. Jesus Has Risen! Sunrise services. Bach and Mahler gave way to Keith Green’s “He is Risen” (with the accompanying and happy cringes as the congregation attempted to hit those high notes).

    Jesus is Risen … the crux of our faith. That which sets Jesus apart from the prophets who became before him and who have come since. A sacrifice so great it could change the world. I felt profound joy on those Easters.

    But years pass. Faith shifts. Sundays became more about Bloody Marys and the NY Times crossword. But my love for Easter has remained intact. Thousands of miles separate us, but on Easter my parents and I—for all our differences and dramas—still chat and laugh about the days of big organs and big hats and Egg Offs.

    And then yesterday, a very dark shadow descended over Easter.

    On ABC’s Sunday morning talk show, This Week, the Reverend Franklin Graham (I just gagged a little typing “reverend” in front of this evil man’s name) and Ralph Reed, former leader of the Christian Coalition and now head of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, spent almost half of their allotted time explicitly and unreservedly demonizing gay people.

    Rev. Graham first spoke of Jesus’ love, and then reiterated his admiration for Putin’s/Russia’s new anti-gay laws, which has wrought torture and death upon countless gay men. He talked about how children must be protected from gay people. They replayed an interview in which Graham made a point of saying that when gay people adopt children, what they’re really doing is “recruiting” them.
    Then Ralph Reed quoted statistics of “irrefutable” social science which he claimed proves how destructive to children it is to be raised by same-sex parents. (A minute later he was forced to admit that, in his own words, “the social science is just simply not in yet”—meaning he had just lied about the ‘irrefutable’ claims of harm done to children by same sex parents. But by then he had of course said what he wanted America to hear and believe, which is that same-sex parents destroy the lives of the children they raise.)

    That is Reed in the picture above, as Franklin Graham is talking about how gay people are welcomed into heaven, as long as they “repent and turn,” the same as any sinner.

    It was Easter Sunday. And on national television, all these Christian leaders wanted to talk about was how evil and destructive people like me are.

    Easter morning. And the message they were moved to proclaim to the world was:

    Jesus is Risen. Protect our children from evil gays. Hallelujah.

    I thought of my grandmother Mernie. I poured myself a Bloody Mary. And I cried.

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/2014/04/hosanna-jesus-is-risen-let-us-bash-some-gays/

    Like

  47. So, in your world, Jesus denied holiness for compassion and taught us that being righteous was no longer a requirement for faith.

    Jesus said: “Love the Lord your God…and your neighbour…this shall be the whole of the law…” I don’t see anything there about the need to be righteous in order to do have faith.

    Like

  48. The ‘christian’ mafia should be given cement shoes and then everyone can see if they have faith to float

    Like

  49. As I said, Bones, holiness with compassion, not a conversion from holiness to compassion, as you claim. He brings us to both.

    I actually pointed people to the whole passage, so I left nothing out at all. I suggested reading it all. That way you’ll see that Jesus made following law even harder, and with greater consequences for failure. But the law saves no one. We are saved by grace through faith, and it is faith which brings us to righteousness. We can’t be holy without Christ, but with Him we are made to be the righteousness of God and able to put on Christ, who is our holiness. But without God’s love at work in our lives, neither holiness nor compassion are any more than clanging gongs.

    Anyway. You have decided that holiness is unnecessary to a godly walk, and has been converted to compassion. I disagree. I say we need both in love.

    Go with God, Bones, that’s all I care about in the end.

    Love and peace to you and yours.

    Like

  50. Reading those verses it’s obvious that Jesus is turning the holiness code into that of love.

    “Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.”

    How?

    Well Jesus already explained it.

    By loving others. You know showing compassion, mercy.

    Even the adulterers passage Jesus shows that we are all adulterers, no matter how holy you think you are.

    It’s not rocket science.

    Notice you skipped the divorce one.

    That’s ok, no one else takes any notice of Jesus on divorce either.

    Like

  51. He rejected the Pharisees’ interpretation of holiness.

    Well, we already established that he rejected the righteousness of the Pharisees, and, therefore, the concept of holiness they had, but this in no way negates holiness as a lifestyle. It directs us to the godliness which comes through a right relationship with Christ.

    He, at best, redefined holiness as compassion.

    Why would he need to? Compassion already existed. He wasn’t replacing holiness with compassion. He was compassionate because he was sent with the mandate of love, grace and peace to a fallen world. God has always been compassionate. He has always been love. He has always been righteous. He has always been holy.

    If anything, Jesus upped the standards of the law regarding our conduct. He said that hatred was now the equivalent of murder. He changed the generally accepted eye for and eye response to wrong to love your enemies, and pray for those who spitefully use you. Go the extra mile. The Sermon on the Mount doesn’t reduce the concepts of the Law of Moses. It actually increases the level of intensity. Holiness isn’t replaced. It is increased.

    Matthew 5:27-30
    “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery. ’ But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.”

    Jesus speaking. Sounds like a call for holiness at a higher level to me. With compassion.

    Matthew 5:43-48
    Love Your Enemies
    “ You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.”

    You shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

    If you have ever read and grasped the significance of the Sermon on the Mount, you will know that Christ makes it clear that it is impossible to live up to its standards without him. That is the point. He is drawing us to holiness which is only attainable through God’s grace and faith in him.

    Compassion is important, but not without holiness.

    Like

  52. So you’re saying Jesus stopped being holy, teaching holiness?

    He rejected the Pharisees’ interpretation of holiness.

    He, at best, redefined holiness as compassion.

    Like

  53. Mercy and compassion are not in dispute.

    But clearly you have an issue with holiness.

    My post is in moderation…

    Like

  54. You seem to have overlooked what was sandwiched in there.

    7 “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.”

    Like

  55. Bones, a hunger for righteousness and to be ‘pure of heart’ are both synonymous with holiness. These are considered by Jesus to be blessed and virtuous.

    Your assault on the concept of holiness is at odds with Jesus’ teaching. It is also at odds with the apostles who were taught by Jesus.

    To argue that holiness is somehow in conflict with compassion is a false dichotomy.

    “The rejection of holiness is a license to sin. There is nothing in scripture to support this concept, and neither is there anything which supports the argument that we have a choice between compassion and holiness. We need both.”

    Says it all really.

    Also Bones, what of the person who professes they abhor both God and Jesus, yet show compassion to others?

    Like

  56. Matthew 5:6. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness:

    They want to be better; they are hungry and thirsty after more holiness. They boast not of personal perfection, they are hungering and thirsting after righteousness, but they have not attained to it yet.
    Matthew 5:6. For they shall be filled.

    God will fill them; and when he fills men with his fullness, they are full indeed.

    Matthew 5:7-8. Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

    There is such a connection between purity of heart and purity of understanding that the man whose eye is clarified by holiness shall see God.

    Like

  57. Given that they’re members of my family, what do you think?

    I don’t talk about my opinions on the same sex issue as I know I would be disowned by my family, friends and church.

    It’s a reason I no longer attend church much. There just isn’t room to question anything. It’s a pentecostal church and I get concerned with what they teach my kids.

    Sad, cos there’s great people there.

    Like

  58. So, in your world, Jesus denied holiness for compassion and taught us that being righteous was no longer a requirement for faith.

    And yet righteousness, according to all scriptural principles, is accorded because of faith, not works. In fact, the only way for a sinner to be made righteous is through faith in Jesus Christ and the work of the cross.

    Your misrepresentation that Jesus replaced holiness with mercy has no basis anywhere in scripture, or in the generally accepted tenets of the faith. Holiness is as necessary to a walk in the Spirit as mercy, grace, righteousness and compassion.

    Jesus was led of the Holy Spirit in all of His ministry. He was led by the Holy One. His name means ‘Holy One’. He was the Messiah, the Anointed, the Christ, which exactly and entirely means Holy One, and permanently points to His holiness, righteousness, grace and peace.

    He made clear distinctions between the life of a disciple and the attitude of the world towards Him and, therefore, his followers.

    You cannot separate, as a matter of convenience for your argument, mercy from righteousness, or grace from holiness, or compassion from godliness.

    Further, as a line of argument, you have created the misnomer that holiness equates to pharisaic theology and mercy to Christ, which is in no way either Biblical or true. Jesus made it clear that the righteousness of the Pharisees was legalistic, false and to be rejected. But he did not, then, reject true righteousness. He promoted it and led us to it by His death and resurrection.

    He displayed mercy, compassion and grace, but was also the epitome of holiness, righteousness and purity of Spirit.

    As Loser Bill has pointed out, you have a morality for those you reject and another morality for those you champion, but this is so inconsistent that it leaves your argument in tatters. To give the excuse that ‘no one is perfect’ is to say that we can actually have an anything-goes approach to what we consider morality.

    But the Bible is very clear on this, and fundamentally disagrees with your assertions. Paul, revealing his credentials says of his call from God that was sent to preach “concerning His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh, and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.”

    Like

  59. Bones
    Do you have love and compassion for the christian right or do you curse them like so many other left leaning christians?

    As I said before its very easy to be loving to those who agree and unmerciful to those who disagree and this takes place in all areas of christendom

    Like

  60. There’s no doubt that the Gospel writer has Jesus redefining Lev 11:44-45

    “Be holy because I am holy” = The Pharisees

    Becomes

    “Be merciful just as your Father is merciful” = Jesus (Luke 6:36)

    That is not a coincidence.

    Jesus is redefining God.

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  61. Holiness > Compassion = Pharisees

    Holiness > Compassion the teachings of Jesus

    It’s pretty simple.

    And radical.

    “The Pharisees did not have Christ. They interpreted the Law according to human concepts, and made rules out of grace, and that is what the opponents of faith do still today. They reject the instructions of the New Testament because they consider them either too hard, too restricting or too boring compared to the lusts of this world, which they prefer.”

    ergo we replaced one Law with another eg your friends in the Reformed camp.

    The Bible is not a rule book.

    God’s kingdom is not a kingdom of holiness.

    It’s a kingdom of compassion.

    It’s through compassion you find ‘holiness’ and are set apart.

    Not from rules or ‘sin’.

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  62. If Christianity is all about compassion and not holiness can you say you are compassionate about Hillsong, C3 Church or evangeilcals and do not expect holiness or moral behavior from them

    Are you or I perfect?

    I studied with clergy who where gay but hid it. I knew a very good gay priest who died of AIDS but the church covered ft up.

    What this site shows is what happens when the holy ones who have been set apart and placed on a pedestal aren’t really that holy at all.

    Morality, of course, is totally subjective.

    There was nothing compassionate or holy over C3s hounding of climate change scientist, Tim Flannery, because his predictions didn’t line up with Phil Pringle’s prophecies.

    Btw ripping off the poor, bullying churches and Christian organisations over homosexuality and preying on people’s fears or greed isn’t holy nor terribly moral.

    Oh and Hillsong has changed its attitude towards gays which is good to see.

    http://signposts02.wordpress.com/2013/08/28/sorry-steve-just-one-more/

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  63. To clarify my position as a pentecostal/evangelical…I have certain issues with how larger churches like Hillsong, C3 etc have done things in the past and personally expect ‘holiness’ to be displayed.
    When I say holiness I don’t mean perfection as no one is perfect but I do believe there are moral expectations on all Christians whether pentecostal, evangelical, catholic, anglican and liberal groups

    Compassion and forgiveness should always be at work but we cant choose who we want to express compassion towards and which groups we expect greater morality.

    Every group wants compassion for themselves but greater accountability for those ‘other’ christians.
    Since God is impartial he expects the same from all believers and so should we.

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  64. Bones
    If Christianity is all about compassion and not holiness can you say you are compassionate about Hillsong, C3 Church or evangeilcals and do not expect holiness or moral behavior from them

    It seems that many people get outraged when these above groups do not display holiness or moral behavior

    Why does this site even exist if not to expose the moral failures or should we say lack of holiness by pentecostals and evangelicals

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  65. Well, John also says we all sin, but the difference is that he also tells us that we can go to the Father for forgiveness and He is faithful to forgive us of all unrighteousness. The blood of Jesus washes us clean when we repent, Bones. Besides, I don’t think you know me as well as you think you do, and nor I you. I admire your stance for compassion, and, in many ways, agree to an extent with it, but not at the expense of holiness, which is, undoubtedly, an instruction for all believers.

    We are disciples, not part time followers who sin today and pretend to be holy the next. We consciously and deliberately strive to lead godly lives despite our shortcomings. We do not abandon the concept of purity, separation and holiness because we might occasionally stumble or fall. We cop the rebuke from God and repent. We confess our sin, renounce it, and get on with godliness.

    We don’t say holiness is an impossible or unattainable state, because we are not alone. We are in Christ. That is the point I have been making all along. Without Christ righteousness and holiness are impossible. With Him they are inevitable.

    The Pharisees did not have Christ. They interpreted the Law according to human concepts, and made rules out of grace, and that is what the opponents of faith do still today. They reject the instructions of the New Testament because they consider them either too hard, too restricting or too boring compared to the lusts of this world, which they prefer.

    What you have done is dismiss any and all scripture which doesn’t fit in with your worldview. There is a conflict between what the Bible demonstrates to be holiness and righteousness and the degree of compassion you would like to display towards those who reject God’s instructions. Where the woman in adultery is warned to sin no more, you seem to be saying it is fine for her to continue sinning and there will be no eternal repercussions, but that is not what Christ was saying. He was emphatic. “Sin no more”. When God says this we sit up and take notice. We all do. Without exception.

    Two things he said in that passage – “Let those who are without sin throw the first stone”. “Sin no more” Yes, he also said “I do not condemn you”, but that wasn’t a blanket statement which permitted sin. It preempted His work at the cross. He did not come to condemn anyone, but to save the world. But he wasn’t giving anyone a licence to sin. That would be a perversion of scripture. He came to liberate the world from the wages of sin. After he told the woman he did not condemn her, he warned her to sin no more. That is the significance of the passage. Sin is wrong. Don’t do it.

    So I agree that compassion is a calling card of Christ. There is no argument with you on this. And I agree that we need to be open to all people at all times, but with the message of the gospel, not acceptance of sin. The gospel is the great deliverance from sin, and Christ is the Deliverer.

    But you are asking people to abandon holiness as if it is evil, wrong or against God’s will. This is completely wrong. God never, anywhere, told us to abandon holiness. Scripture emphatically points Disciples towards godliness. God is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. When we are born again we receive of the Spirit, the Holy Spirit. We are born of the Spirit, the Holy Spirit. God is Holy. His Kingdom is a Kingdom of Holiness.

    So we need compassion, yes, but on the basis of holiness, which is only accessible through a relationship with Christ.

    The rejection of holiness is a license to sin. There is nothing is scripture to support this concept, and neither is there anything which supports the argument that we have a choice between compassion and holiness. We need both.

    Like

  66. When World Vision Drops Me

    Ben Moberg

    I got the news that World Vision had reversed its’ policy on employing gay and lesbians right after I got done with work. I was outside the school where I aid elementary age kids, special needs kids, and though I sometimes struggle with feelings of inadequacy in my job, I am actually a pretty awesome paraprofessional. Turns out, I’m pretty great at caring for kids in need.

    And I was in my car when I got the news and I sped away, lest any of my little guys climbing the bus would see me, should I start to cry.

    Before I headed home where I would find my mom, on the phone with another mom of a gay kid, telling her, “We will not respond the way they did. I refuse to be like them. We will be like Jesus, instead.” Before I got the text message from my brother, a very simple and needed, “I Love You.” I pulled over and parked in a vacant lot.

    I turned off my ignition and I didn’t cry. I just sat there. Breathing. Stunned and struck by betrayal and pain and anger, wave after wave of it, and I couldn’t form a coherent thought or calm my heart.

    Though I understand that World Vision essentially had a gun to its head after evangelical leaders incited a mass backlash of dropped funds, it doesn’t make what they did right. Their reversal hurts more than anything I read from the evangelicals ranting. It was the kiss of Judas. And in the end, this was simply wrong and ungodly and deeply defeating.

    I read Richard Stearn’s apology to conservatives through gritted teeth, because it is that bad. Richard Stearns, the man I praised the other day, disqualified me in a way against serving alongside him, and begged the forgiveness from those like Graham, Burk, Moore and Piper. And it does really hurt, this abrupt abandonment, this puncture of what was so much hope and pride and encouragement. Suddenly, reversed.

    But, and not many years ago, it was Richard Stearns who shook up my faith in the best possible way. I read his book The Hole in Our Gospel, twice, and I recommended it to every person I knew. It was and still is one of the best Christian books I have ever read.

    And who can understand the vehemence of yesterday upon him and his? Who can completely throw out he, Stearns, who left a life of luxury, to serve the world’s poor? Who can deny that World Vision is a rarity in Christianity, a group of folks whose sole purpose is to give the gospel hands and feet, bringing bread and water and mercy? Who can look at those pictures of kids being fed, of kids writing letters, those going to school and becoming kingdom builders themselves and write off an organization that is doing such beautiful work?

    The truth is, friends, I am sitting in a coffee shop and writing this, and my teeth are still gritted, because I am writing things I am not feeling. But I believe, wholeheartedly, that there will come a day when I will. I know I will.

    And when it comes to forgiveness, I take something like that very seriously. If it’s not flowing through my veins, then it’s not really there and I refuse to pretend it is. So I’ll say it true, as it is, right now:

    I am not ready to forgive those that held starving children as ransom because of who I am and I am not ready to forgive Richard Stearns for this profoundly deep betrayal. I am not ready to forgive either of them for the devastating message they have sent to gay children everywhere.

    But I can do grace. I can reach into the deep pockets of all that I have left and let it be a balm on my heart, let it tend to me until that moment comes when, as Anne Lamott says, “it finally becomes unimportant that you hit back.” I can give and give and give even as I’m pissed off and hurt because although they don’t deserve this, neither do I.

    And my rage isn’t wrong, because this isn’t right. And so I will channel it all into doing my job here as a blogger, as a believer, loving gay kids and talking about the Jesus that wouldn’t change them for the world.

    And though a Christian nonprofit embracing me, if just for a moment, is quite an event of subversion, I know in my own little world, the most radical act I can take is to say this: Yes, I love Jesus, too, and you’re my brother, and the Love of God makes us both enough. It might be offensive to you, infuriating perhaps, it might even tempt you into dropping a kid off the face of the earth and blame it on me, but here’s the truth:

    My chains are gone. I’ve been set free. My God my savior, has ransomed me.

    And like a flood, his mercy reigns, unending love, amazing grace.

    http://www.registeredrunaway.com/2014/03/27/when-world-vision-drops-me/

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  67. Sorry Steve but you’re not holy. That I do know. And yes you do sin despite what John says. I know that too.

    Paul has elements of Pharisaism and Greek philosophy and yes there are swathes of scripture that don’t apply unless your wife wears a hat in church and doesn’t preach. Talk of ‘not touching anything unclean’ is straight out Jewish holiness form the Law.

    The disciples themselves struggled with the Law and keeping it. Christianity is not about holiness. Jesus has shown that. The world is over that sort of nonsense and self righteousness. It’s where Christians fall into the trap of hypocrisy and obsession with morality and sexuality. It’s about compassion.

    The Pharisees used the same OT verse, be holy for I am holy. The fact is in your quest for holiness, you have become the set apart, the separated one, the Pharisee.

    Only a Pharisee would claim holiness while refusing compassion to the vulnerable like asylum seekers.

    None of this applies to the current debate anyway because homosexuality is no more a sin than heterosexuality.

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  68. I was quoting Paul from the New Testament, Bones. From 2 Corinthians 6. Are you saying Paul no longer applies to Christian teaching? I know there are schools of thought which think this, but removing swathes of Pauline scripture from the Bible doesn’t help anyone.

    2 Corinthians 6
    11 O Corinthians! We have spoken openly to you, our heart is wide open.
    12 You are not restricted by us, but you are restricted by your own affections.
    13 Now in return for the same (I speak as to children), you also be open.
    14 Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness?
    15 And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever?
    16 And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will dwell in them And walk among them. I will be their God, And they shall be My people.”
    17 Therefore “Come out from among them And be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, And I will receive you.”
    18 “I will be a Father to you, And you shall be My sons and daughters, Says the LORD Almighty.”

    I also quoted the New Testament earlier when I pointed out that God instructs us to be holy because He is holy, and that, without holiness no one will see the Lord.

    1 Peter 1
    13 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
    14 as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance;
    15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct,
    16 because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”

    Hebrews 12:14
    Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord…

    The Greek for ‘holy’ or ‘holiness’ is from hagiazo, from which we also derive ‘saints’, hagion. It means ‘separation and consecration to purity’, or ‘to separate from profane things and dedicate to God’.

    And John confirms this:

    1 John 3
    1 ¶ Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.
    2 Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.
    3 And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.
    4 Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.
    5 And you know that He was manifested to take away our sins, and in Him there is no sin.
    6 Whoever abides in Him does not sin. Whoever sins has neither seen Him nor known Him.

    ‘Everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure’, using from hagiazo, to cleans or purify oneself from sin. We can only do this n Christ. Outside of Christ it is impossible.

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  69. We aren’t saved from ‘separation from God’.

    What a lot of baloney!

    That’s the sanitized version of hell.

    “And Jesus did not disagree with the condemnation under the Law either.”

    You must have a different Bible to mine. (cf Lev 20:10) So who is to carry out the executions of God’s supposed Laws if sinful people can’t?

    We all know that those Laws aren’t from God at all.

    “Do not touch what is unclean…”

    “Do not be yoked with non-believers…”

    Why do you refer to scriptures which no longer apply, if they ever did?

    Nice try at trying to make yourself superior to everyone else though.

    The divide between believers/ non-believers is all in your head.

    Btw much of John’s comments on the Pharisees and ‘the Jews’ represents the mindset of the Christians in the Johannine community.

    In essence it is propaganda as opposed to history. Though you could replace the Pharisees with the word Evangelicals and get the same gist of the story.

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  70. Yet Jesus told the Pharisees they would die their sin and never see the Father. Which is compounded by his saying that we must be born again to see the kingdom. The woman caught in adultery was told to stop sinning.

    She wasn’t saved, was she? She could not be until after the resurrection. She was kept from the stones of those who wanted to condemn her. Why? Because they judged her for her sin, but were sinful themselves and worthy of equal judgment. “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone!” So sin condemned them, too.

    And Jesus did not disagree with the condemnation under the Law either. She was guilty. So sin is, in effect, a factor in grace and judgment.

    Jesus, when he walked the earth, demonstrated that he had the power to forgive sin. He never said that we could go on being sinful, did he? More than once he told someone to ‘sin no more’. He preached repentance. “Repent, for the kingdom of God is at hand!”

    But the issue for us today isn’t sin but faith. We are not saved by good works. They mean nothing. We are saved by grace through faith. Saved from what? Separation from God. What, then, separates us? Rebellion. Disobedience. Sin and trespass. Rejection of God. God’s grace is offered despite our sin, despite the fact that our words and deeds condemn us.

    Jesus doesn’t have to condemn us. We condemn ourselves. But God made a way back to Himself.

    Your understanding of holiness is flawed. Holiness in both the OT and the NT is separation unto God. That is the literal meaning. As if our own righteousness or goodness could ever come near to God’s holiness. It could not, will not. It is the perfection in Jesus which brings us into the Presence of God. Have you ever counted how many times Paul reminds us that we are in Christ, and of Christ, ‘in whom’ we have sanctification, justification and glorification?

    It is nothing of us, nor could it ever be. Holiness is separation from sin, onto God. A saint is a separated person, a sanctified person.

    “Come out form among them, and be separate” Says the Lord, “do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you, I will be a Father unto you, and I will call you my sons and daughters!” says the Lord Almighty.

    ‘Come out and be separate’. From what? From the unbelievers. From the world of sin. From darkness. “Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers!” Com out and be separate. That is what ‘holiness’ means. Separation. Sanctification.

    Well, you can’t do this when the judgment comes, can you? You can only be separate and sanctified on earth, during your lifetime, whilst God’s wrath is stayed, and peace is declared for all mankind, and the gospel is there to be preached to all the world.

    It is the holiness and righteousness of Christ which makes us holy through faith in Him. It is nothing of ourselves. It is all of Jesus.

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  71. John 8:10-11

    10 Straightening up, Jesus said to her, “Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?” 11 She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “I do not condemn you, either. Go. From now on sin no more.”

    This woman was in sin. An adulteress, yet Jesus doesn’t condemn her.

    Contrary to the Evangelical obsession with sin, morality and sex.

    Jesus just says ‘ sin no more’. Why? Because it’s destroying her.

    Now according to Evangelical theology, if this woman was still contemplating Jesus’s words and was stoned to death on the way home by a group of Pharisees following God’s Law, this woman would be condemned by Jesus after she dies.

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  72. @ Brett

    You have it all wrong like sadly most Evangelicals.

    Sin has nothing to do with God.

    Nothing at all.

    That’s what we get from the life and teaching of Jesus.

    It’s about us. Sin (whatever that is) causes death, damages relationships, hurts other people, allows people to starve, justifies sending asylum seekers into concentration camps, victimises people over their sexuality and their race. So yes , sin causes death. Not by God but from us. Sin does not keep us from God. What an Evangelical furfy that is and how criminal is it to teach that to people. It is unbiblical and presents a God which is only interested in good people.

    The antithesis of Jesus.

    The idea that God can’t abide sin is not bourne out in the life of Jesus who welcomed sinners and didn’t shy away from sin.

    Where does Jesus say sinners deserve death?

    Where?

    And Jesus was so holy he hung out with prostitutes and those considered the scum of society. He was so holy, he let a prostitute kiss his feet.

    If that was the case then he should have stoned the woman caught in adultery. That He didn’t shows He broke the Law.

    And don’t tell me the admonition to ‘ sin no more’ meant if you keep sinning I will burn you in hell.

    If God can’t abide sin, then how did Jesus handle being in a sinful world?

    You’re leading a sinful lifestyle right now. Also you have unrepentant sin in your life.

    And you will when you die.

    All of humanity is on that ship and it’s not heading for hell.

    And no ‘ Jesus is not a get out of hell free’ card.

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  73. Brett, so I can understand your meaning better.

    At what point can one have sin in their lives and still not be on that “ship”. In other words can one have unrepentant sin in their lives and still go to heaven when they die?

    If so what is the tipping point?

    The reason I ask is that the scriptures you quoted are ones calling for repentance and your preface only mentioned turning from sin. Not really much to God’s holiness. How do you understand how God can retain his holiness and accept us into heaven?

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  74. God is holy. Jesus is holy.
    A sinful lifestyle is akin to being trapped on a sinking ship which is listing badly and is hopelessly doomed to destruction. The wages of sin is death.
    Even though sin rightfully deserves death, God makes a way for us to be saved. He sends the rescue team… Jesus, who shows us love and compassion, despite our fallen sinful state.
    Jesus does not want us to perish due to a sinful lifestyle. He doesn’t embrace us only to say, just continue on in what you’re doing there, stay on the ship, it doesn’t matter.
    He urges to us to repent, and change our mind. He urges us to hop off the ship. Turn away from the sinful lifestyle and follow Jesus, away from the sinking ship.
    But it is our choice. He doesn’t take our free will away from us. But he does urge us to hop off the ship.
    Matthew 4:17
    English Standard Version (ESV)
    17 From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
    Luke 5:32
    English Standard Version (ESV)
    32 I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.”
    Luke 13:5
    English Standard Version (ESV)
    5 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”
    Luke 3:8
    English Standard Version (ESV)
    8 Bear fruits in keeping with repentance. And do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children for Abraham.

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  75. You haven’t dissected or blown away anyone’s understanding of Revelation, Bones. You’ve presented a case, but it isn’t in any way conclusive. It merely states your opinion.

    You can’t get away with dismissing what the Bible says that easily. It tells us that God has determined that certain people will be rejected from entry into the Kingdom and will suffer a second death. Besides, we do not base our understanding of God’s judgment, mercy, wrath and grace on one verse from one passage in one book, but on consistency of scripture, which is why I gave you two references to the same conclusion, that God is a righteous Judge, and sin will be rejected. We don’t need Revelation to understand the doctrine, but it is relevant to doctrine nonetheless.

    Dismissing passages and books of scripture doesn’t help you at all. It leaves you short of Christian and Biblical reference and opens you up to human logic based on opinion and potentially flawed supposition.

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  76. “Love the sinner, hate the sin!” comes the call from the right;
    “It’s no sin to be gay!” gets one into the fight.
    “You’re picking and choosing! You disobey God!”
    “Love neighbor as self! Your theology’s flawed!”
    “You toss out the Bible! For that you will burn!”
    “I study the Bible! It’s you who won’t learn!”
    For now furies are spent, and everyone’s spoken,
    On the field is left Jesus, his body all broken.

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/2014/04/his-body-all-broken/

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  77. @ Brett. You need to study the Pharisees and not Christian propaganda.

    They were no different to Evangelical Christians who based godliness and righteousness on rules.

    Jesus to gays

    “Of course they have to reject you because you’re gay. It’s because you don’t fit their interpretation of what the Bible says is a good person. Why do you think they had me killed?”

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/nakedpastor/2013/05/gays-rejected-but-so-was-jesus/

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  78. Bones, God calls us to be holy. Not a fake imitation of holiness, Pharisee style, which is motivated by works righteousness, and is ego driven. Rather genuine holiness, born of Christ living in us and His grace operating through us. If Christ is living in us then we will be motivated to live a life like Him, holy.

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  79. I think you missed what I said, there, Bones. I certainly answered you, and from scripture, which I know you have difficulty with. God is God and judges justly. He sees the end from the beginning, and has mercy on whom he has mercy, and hardens who he chooses, because all have sinned and fallen short of his glory, which means all have come under the reward for sin, which is death.

    This means all are subject to judgment, and, therefore, His wrath or His mercy. He has chosen to send His Son to pay for the sins of the world, but unless we receive His grace through faith we remain in sin. His compassion is revealed and sure, but so is His holiness.

    And, yes, he calls us to holiness, without which no one will see Him.

    Hebrews 12:14
    Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see The Lord…

    It’s God’s grace which saves, through faith in Jesus Christ. And holiness comes in Him alone. We are instructed to be holy because He is holy.

    1 Peter 1:13-21
    Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, “ Be holy, for I am holy.” And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear; knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you who through Him believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.

    It’s the blood of Jesus which makes us holy.

    Like

  80. So you can’t answer when prejudice and genocide are ok.

    Seems the God you believe in is no different to the Calvinist demon.

    It’s good that none of those atrocities like the Joshuan Conquest never happened.

    No matter how much you really want it to.

    Like

  81. Well it depends on the terminology used, of course, but…

    2 Thessalonians 1
    3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other,
    4 so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure,
    5 which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer;
    6 since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you,
    7 and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels,
    8 in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
    9 These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power,
    10 when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.

    Can you tell me when sin, treachery and rebellion against God are OK?

    It appears you are continually categorising God according to your own moral standards, and not His, and using humanitarian terms rather than those of holiness and grace.

    Your source wants us to decide between holiness and compassion, coming to the conclusion that compassion includes a tolerance for sin at any price, but God has not ceased to be holy, and demanding a holy people, so His compassion is an outworking of holiness, not a substitute. He still demands that we be made righteous and holy through the cross and blood of Christ. He came for the sinner, but so that the sinner can be saved, cleansed and made holy through the Word and Spirit.

    His compassion is for a fallen, lost world, and He has made provision for them to be recovered to Him, but they will not enter the Kingdom without the Spirit, and the only way to the Spirit is through faith in Jesus Christ. They will to enter if they remain in sin.

    Revelation 20
    3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God.
    4 “And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”
    5 Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.”
    6 And He said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts.
    7 “He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son.
    8 “But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

    I know, you don’t like it, but it does answer your question Biblically.

    Like

  82. Hmmm. Genocide is not wrong eh, Steve.

    Well at least we can dismiss the argument over absolutes.

    Btw the Bible writers were making God in their own image.

    God doesn’t control armies. God doesn’t control the weather. God doesn’t punish people.

    We know that now. The holocaust was not a punishment for the Jews.

    Can you tell me an instance where prejudice and genocide are Ok?

    Like

  83. I wasn’t humanising God, Bones. I was using your source’s standards to demonstrate the weakness of his argument. We are not a list of natures, we are complex beings with the ability to respond to a variety of situations. We do not have a personality disorder simply because we have a range of emotions and responses.

    I think you are creating a comfort God who fits your personal needs and standards. That’s fine. But you are a finite being with limited ability. God is omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent. He sees the beginning and the end. He knows all things. He acts on what he knows before it takes place.

    For you prejudice, judgment and vengeance would be wrong because you can only see into the past and present. For God it is not wrong, because he sees the end from the beginning.

    Like

  84. But what of Jesus? He provided clarity regarding who God is and how God relates to us and loves us. He also provided clarity with regard to God’s plan to redeem humanity. What of Jesus’ teachings and the way they resonate in such a powerful way and bring meaning? His words speak to the heart and transform us today. What of the way Jesus’ words transformed fisherman to become leaders of a movement that transformed much of the world? What of the way God’s words speak through the writings of Peter and Paul?

    People have been transformed through the Koran. Look at Cat Stevens.

    Buddhism transforms people, so do other religions.

    Though you would say their transformation is false.

    Of course people are transformed by the words of Jesus. Some aren’t.

    What we see in this issue is people who aren’t transformed by the teachings of Jesus but latched on to a couple of verses to justify their bigotry.

    Like

  85. Applying post-modern terminology and psychology to an analysis of God’s nature is merely humanising him. This can never work. He is God.

    Actually it’s an analysis of the psychology of belief.

    You’re the one humanising God.

    Like

  86. “That’s an amusing post-modern deconstructs view of God, Bones. ”

    An honest one though.

    As a parent I’ve never felt the need to slaughter my children.

    Or sacrifice one because the neighbour’s kids are naughty.

    Or tell them to invade their neighbours land and kill everything in it.

    Oh hang on.

    Victoria Soliz Allegedly Tries To Drown Son In Puddle Because Jesus Told Her To

    That’s no more revelation of God than revelation of people’s agendas.

    Of course you’d say the woman above was a nutter, wouldn’t you?

    Like

  87. Hello Bones,

    I had already read your article.

    Undoubtedly the Biblical depiction of God can at times appear contradictory and confusing. I can appreciate how this could lead someone to question the validity of the biblical account. I too grapple with these issues from time to time. I don’t understand some of the inconsistencies and I have many unanswered questions.

    I also understand the arguments of the biblical scholars who do not believe in God or the divinity of Christ. And therefore view the Bible through a prism of a naturalistic world view, which renders the Bible as a mere product of culture, and mythology.

    But what of Jesus? He provided clarity regarding who God is and how God relates to us and loves us. He also provided clarity with regard to God’s plan to redeem humanity. What of Jesus’ teachings and the way they resonate in such a powerful way and bring meaning? His words speak to the heart and transform us today. What of the way Jesus’ words transformed fisherman to become leaders of a movement that transformed much of the world? What of the way God’s words speak through the writings of Peter and Paul?

    From my own experience, the difficulties I have with biblical inconsistencies pale into insignificance compared to knowing Jesus, through faith, as my Lord and Saviour and through his word in the biblical account.

    One of the recurring themes of Jesus’ teaching was the concept of faith. Faith being essential to knowing God. Jesus also said “therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock”.

    Bones, you’ve got to be wise about what you are immersing your thoughts in. If you choose to saturate your thoughts in the writings of the Jesus Seminar, then it will undermine your faith and render the Bible lifeless… a book of mythology where you will have doubt in the veracity of any scripture you read.. If you choose to operate in faith, and believe Jesus’ teachings, as written in the New Testament, it will allow the word of God to speak to your heart and it will re-kindle your faith.

    Cheers

    Like

  88. That’s an amusing post-modern deconstructs view of God, Bones. The writer compartmentalises certain aspects of God’s revealed nature and then tells us we shouldn’t differentiate between them or we will be accused of having a God with a personality disorder.

    So by the same standard, if you or I, as parents, are displaying joy and laughter with our children one minute, but, after some misdemeanour on their part, we show anger, or bring correction, even sanctions, but then demonstrate mercy and forgiveness we are suddenly displaying symptoms of ‘personality disorder’!

    And the deconstructionists would compartmentalise each of these responses and claim that there is something unnatural about a person who displays a number of responses to different situations, why? Because the list he made says so! Why, this is the logic of a melancholy mind.

    In fact, the Bible speaks of God’s interaction with people, with the world which rejected him as their God, and in particular with a people he chose to carry us to the Saviour, the Seed of Abraham, Jesus. His nature was revealed in his dealings with their cantankerous and disobedient nature, and the way in which he had to nurture and steer them to the time when the Word was made flesh and dwelt amongst us, went to the cross to pay for the sin of the world, and was raised to enable us to become sons of God through faith in him.

    God is who He is. That is how he revealed himself to us. But he is more than his responses ad interaction with a sinful world. What we see in the Bible only reveals the way in which he dealt with the problem of a wayward world.

    Applying post-modern terminology and psychology to an analysis of God’s nature is merely humanising him. This can never work. He is God.

    “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Preached among the Gentiles, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.”

    Like

  89. Read the article I posted.

    Sums up pretty well what I believe about God.

    biblical images of God

    The ancient Jewish and Christian communities who created the Old and New Testaments of the Bible reveal many different images of God in their stories:

    a God of life and creation
    a God of destruction and global genocide
    a God of liberation and salvation
    a God of wrath and anger
    a God of laws and requirements
    a God of war and ethnic cleansing
    a God of justice and protector of the poor
    a God of holiness and otherness
    a God of nearness and tenderness
    a God of faithfulness and longsuffering
    a God of graciousness and generosity
    a God of condemnation and damnation
    a God of comfort and compassion
    a God of acceptance and forgiveness
    a God of violent retribution
    a God of peace and love
    a personality disorder?

    All of these images of God are biblical. Because of this, some critics claim that God has a serious personality disorder.

    These wide-ranging images cannot with any honesty or integrity be seen as different aspects of the same God. They are not descriptions of a single God with changing moods, or varied behavior reflecting good and bad days. And despite the fact that many Christians want to believe that God is “the same yesterday, today and tomorrow,” these images cannot by any stretch of the imagination be integrated or blended together.

    Some claim that the differences can be explained because the God of the Old Testament is angry and judgmental while the God of the New Testament is loving and forgiving. But anyone who reads the Bible with open eyes and a critical mind soon finds that both images of God exist side-by-side in both parts of the Bible.

    These images represent very different perceptions of God’s character by different biblical writers at different times in history. Sometimes, these images were shaped by the dominant culture of the time or by the political objectives of the nation’s leaders. At other times, these images were shaped by prophetic men and women who called their nation to restore peace and social justice. Most images of God were and are shaped by the believers themselves.

    Like

  90. Bones,
    How do you establish who Jesus’ God is for start, if you reject the validity of the biblical account, and consider much of it to be fairy tales?

    Are you just going to deconstruct the biblical account and reconstruct it to reconcile it with the a 21st century humanist value system?

    How do you derive truth?

    Maybe you are at peace with your God because he is of your own making. In the mould of your own reasoning and sense of moral justice. What room does that leave for God’s sovereignty?

    Jesus can be whomever you want him to be if you reject the validity of the biblical account.

    Like

  91. Speaking of putting God in the dock.

    This article does just that. Puts your God in the dock and examines Him.

    You’ll be surprised how the Evangelical God differs to Jesus’s God.

    The Religion of Jesus

    http://www.followingjesus.org/leader/religion_jesus.htm

    eg

    what is the character of your God?

    What is your God like? Is your God angry or compassionate? Does your God punish sinners or welcome them in as beloved children? Does your God directly intervene in world affiars and personal lives, or does your God quietly watch human life from a distance? Is your God a person, a presence, or an experience? Is your God a separate being or is your God part of the fabric of everything that exists? The answer to this question will determine the content of your religion.

    Like

  92. Funny. I posted this issue about the Christian mafia as a response to the Mozilla CEO resigning in another forum.

    When Christians persecute others = righteousness
    When gays persecute others = gay agenda.

    Btw if you’re a CEO promoting values which are contrary to your organisation then you have to step down.

    The Christian mafia will be gunning for the World Vision fella to be gone.

    Like

  93. @ Brett

    It’s your God in the dock not mine.

    I’m quite at peace with my God.

    Far more so then when I was a raving evangelical.

    All of a sudden things make sense.

    Like

  94. I’ve got the moderation blues…..

    The epitome of human arrogance is to put “God in the Dock”. I’ve been there. I had the pride and the ignorance to assert my moral judgement was superior to God’s. How wrong I was, and how flawed. But God never gave up on me, despite my failings. His grace and persistence and love and forgiveness made a way for me despite my short comings.
    Until you come to your senses Bones and humble yourself I fear you will be rudderless and empty in spirit.

    There is no peace like God’s peace. Same goes for love and joy, and judgement, and grace. Nothing compares. Our human intellect and reason are feeble and minuscule compared to God.

    Like

  95. Silly moderation delays.

    The epitome of human arrogance is to put “God in the Dock”. I’ve been there. I had the pride and the ignorance to assert my moral judgement was superior to God’s. How wrong I was, and how flawed. But God never gave up on me, despite my failings. His grace and persistence and love and forgiveness made a way for me despite my short comings.
    Until you come to your senses Bones and humble yourself I fear you will be rudderless and empty in spirit.

    There is no peace like God’s peace. Same goes for love and joy, and judgement, and grace. Nothing compares. Our human intellect and reason are feeble and minuscule compared to God.

    Like

  96. No big deal. Believe what you like. Just wondered. But there’s obviously no use discussing much about Christianity with you on this or any other site. I genuinely feel sad for you. Hope everything goes well with you and your family.
    I’ll be spending time elsewhere from now on. Cheers.

    Like

  97. Dunno.

    But then I don’t believe that God’s going to damn people for having an incomplete or no understanding of the resurrection of Jesus if it happened. Most people have no idea about the resurrection.

    The notion that God is interested in correct thinking and beliefs is another fallacy of Evangelicals used to keep people in line and work out who’s for us and who’s against us (‘us’ being God).

    Bit like the gay sex thing.

    Like

  98. The epitome of human arrogance is to put “God in the Dock”. I’ve been there. I had the pride and the ignorance to assert my morality was superior to God’s. How wrong I was, and how truly pathetic. But God never gave up on me, despite my shame. His grace and persistence and love and forgiveness made a way for me despite my terrible short comings.
    Until you come to your senses Bones and humble yourself I fear you will be rudderless, just floating along.

    Like

  99. The Bible is not God breathed nor divine nor the word of God. Neither is it inerrant, in fact it is frequently errant in it’s understanding of the world, science and history. So it certainly can’t be seen to be an accurate portrayal of God.

    We take out of it what we can. We find principles to live fulfilling lives.

    It’s not worth worshipping a God who’s more interested in sex and his supposed followers ‘morality’ while children starve.

    Like

  100. Bones, you wear your unbelief like a badge of honour.

    Careful sharing and teaching your unbelief to your son. You could rob Him of the Gospel. If it’s all fairy tales to you, the resurrection will eventually be rendered the same, and the next gen, seeing the bible as just a feel good book, will reject the Gospel.

    The bible is not man made ramblings. It’s God breathed. It’s the Word of God man and it’s powerful and life changing. But unbelief and pride will limit you from hearing what The Lord is speaking to you. Intellectualising the bible too much can do the same… It can steal the joy of knowing Him.

    If you are grappling with faith, I would encourage you to humbly ask Him for faith. Fasting and prayer is also a great way to align your heart with Him. If you want to do a prayer fast, I can join you man.

    Like

  101. And of course you’ll explain that the sex outside of marriage laws were for a different time.
    And that the idea of eternal life and life after death was just an ancient idea too. And of course you’ll explain that it was of course a myth that Jesus was more than a man. Right?

    Don’t worry, nobody is going to accuse you of being an evangelical or a Christian. Stop worrying.
    Nobody thinks you are either.

    Like

  102. Had a great discussion last night with my 10 year old who was asking me why God made dinosaurs millions of years ago, yet the Bible said it happened over 7 days.

    Thought it was time to start educating him about the Bible so he doesn’t become one of these ignorant Bible bashers.

    Went through his Action Bible with him and went through all the stories like Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, Noah, the Exodus, Samson, Ezekiel’s Valley of Dry Bones even Revelation and how they didn’t actually happen but were written for a purpose and from the viewpoint of an ancient people 2500 years ago.

    They were just stories. Like the parables Jesus told. Even talked a a bit about the context of Revelation and how it had nothing to do with the future.

    Even he could see that God doesn’t send armies to kill people. That’s educating a child to read critically. I even told him some people won’t like you for saying that.

    Hopefully when he encounters verses on homosexuality these discussions will help him and he’ll be open-minded.

    The Bible is not a law book. The laws it contains are for a different culture and a different time and are as relevant as Ancient Egyptian Laws.

    I’m not going to be responsible for raising a religious bigot.

    Like

  103. “Call me something else. That’ll make everyone happy.”

    Okay,. Raving Nutcase. That’s probably more fitting.

    Go jump in the Burnett and cool down! lol

    Like

  104. If evangelicals are the ‘true’ Christians than I don’t want to be one.

    Call me something else.

    That’ll make everyone happy.

    Like

  105. How evangelicals won a culture war and lost a generation

    (CNN) – On March 24, World Vision announced that the U.S. branch of the popular humanitarian organization would no longer discriminate against employees in same-sex marriages.

    It was a decision that surprised many but one that made sense, given the organization’s ecumenical nature.

    But on March 26, World Vision President Richard Stearns reversed the decision, stating, “our board acknowledged that the policy change we made was a mistake.”

    Supporters helped the aid group “see that with more clarity,” Stearns added, “and we’re asking you to forgive us for that mistake.”

    So what happened within those 48 hours to cause such a sudden reversal?

    The Evangelical Machine kicked into gear.

    Albert Mohler Jr., president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, said the decision pointed to “disaster,” and the Assemblies of God denomination encouraged its members to pull their financial support from the organization.

    Evangelicals took to Twitter and Facebook to threaten to stop sending money to their sponsored children unless World Vision reversed course.

    Within a day of the initial announcement, more than 2,000 children sponsored by World Vision lost their financial support. And with more and more individuals, churches and organizations threatening to do the same, the charity stood to lose millions of dollars in aid that would otherwise reach the poor, sick, hungry and displaced people World Vision serves.

    So World Vision reversed course.

    Stearns told The New York Times that some people, satisfied with the reversal, have called World Vision headquarters to ask, “Can I have my child back?” as though needy children are expendable bargaining chips in the culture war against gay and lesbian people.

    Many of us who grew up evangelical watched with horror as these events unfolded.

    As a longtime supporter of World Vision, I encouraged readers of my blog to pick up some of the dropped sponsorships after the initial decision. I then felt betrayed when World Vision backtracked, though I urged my readers not to play the same game but to keep supporting their sponsored children, who are of course at no fault in any of this.

    But most of all, the situation put into stark, unsettling relief just how misaligned evangelical priorities have become.

    When Christians declare that they would rather withhold aid from people who need it than serve alongside gays and lesbians helping to provide that aid, something is wrong.

    There is a disproportionate focus on homosexuality that consistently dehumanizes, stigmatizes and marginalizes gay and lesbian people and, at least in this case, prioritizes the culture war against them over and against the important work of caring for the poor.

    Evangelicals insist that they are simply fighting to preserve “biblical marriage,” but if this were actually about “biblical marriage,” then we would also be discussing the charity’s policy around divorce.

    But we’re not.

    Furthermore, Scripture itself teaches that when we clothe and feed those in need, we clothe and feed Christ himself, and when we withhold care from those in need, we withhold it from Christ himself (Matthew 25:31-46).

    Why are the few passages about homosexuality accepted uncritically, without regard to context or culture, but the many about poverty so easily discarded?

    As I grieved with my (mostly 20- and 30-something) readers over this ugly and embarrassing situation, I heard a similar refrain over and over again: “I don’t think I’m an evangelical anymore. I want to follow Jesus, but I can’t be a part of this.”

    I feel the same way.

    Whether it’s over the denial of evolutionary science, continued opposition to gender equality in the church, an unhealthy alliance between religion and politics or the obsession with opposing gay marriage, evangelicalism is losing a generation to the culture wars.

    A recent survey from Public Religion Research Institute revealed that nearly one-third of millennials who left their childhood faith did so because of “negative teachings” or “negative treatment” of gay and lesbian people.

    Christians can disagree about what the Bible says (or doesn’t say) about same-sex marriage. This is not an issue of orthodoxy. But when we begin using child sponsorships as bargaining tools in our debates, we’ve lost the way of Jesus.

    So my question for those evangelicals is this: Is it worth it?

    Is a “victory” against gay marriage really worth leaving thousands of needy children without financial support?

    Is a “victory” against gay marriage worth losing more young people to cynicism regarding the church?

    Is a “victory” against gay marriage worth perpetuating the idea that evangelical Christians are at war with LGBT people?

    And is a “victory” against gay marriage worth drowning out that quiet but persistent internal voice that asks, “what if we get this wrong?”

    I, for one, am tired of arguing. I’m tired of trying to defend evangelicalism when its leaders behave indefensibly.

    I’m going AWOL on evangelicalism’s culture wars so I can get back to following Jesus among its many refugees: LGBT people, women called to ministry, artists, science-lovers, misfits, sinners, doubters, thinkers and “the least of these.”

    I’m ready to stop waging war and start washing feet.

    http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2014/03/31/how-evangelicals-won-a-culture-war-and-lost-a-generation/

    Like

  106. All hail the Defenders of the Faith!

    Where would we be without them to tell us what we’re doing wrong.

    We need more Oliver Cromwell’s to defend the apostle’s beliefs. Hoorah!

    Let’s live in Uganda. Yay!

    They’re holding up the standard for Jesus!

    Bullshit!! You really are no different from Westboro. You’re just nicer and smile as you say God hates you.

    What we have seen from evangelicals is a deadset inquisition especially when the boogieman of gay sex comes up. We’ll stop dicks in bums, no matter how many kids starve!!

    We’ll defend the faith by attacking others, whether it’s to do with your gay bigotry or because Hillsong talks about Muslims.

    The howls of heresy and apostasy come out from the indignant evangelical unions.

    I don’t know what God’s truth is as most of it made up but I know that most evangelical beliefs are evil and godless based on an uneducated and uncritical ability to read 2000 year old texts.

    They are the true apostates who have swallowed the gnat.

    That’s deadset true.

    Like

  107. “Thou shalt not commit logical fallacies”. Ad hominem: Attacking your opponent’s character or personal traits instead of engaging with their argument.

    Bones, is a civil discussion possible without playing the man?

    It comes down to where and how we derive truth, and what assurance we have that our truth is consistent with what is the actual truth, ie God.

    Where and how do you derive truth? What assurance do you have that your belief’s are consistent with God?

    How as a Christian can you come to a place where you would see “preservation of the Christian faith as received from Christ’s teaching and that of the apostles”, as myopic and bigoted. A view which humanity is better off without? Are you just shooting your mouth off or is this your conviction? I’m sure atheists would applaud your statement.

    Western society is increasingly becoming a Godless society, centered on humanism and a false counterfeit morality it represents. It short changes people and leaves them spiritually empty and lost, and it ultimately leads to death. Is it any wonder that true followers of Christ would increasingly be marginalized as their value system is completely at odds with the mainstream?

    Irrespective of prevailing mainstream belief systems of the day, and popularity of belief systems, God’s truth is truth, and we have total dependency on Christ for quality of life, salvation, meaning and eternal life.

    Like

  108. The inevitable path of the evangelical old guard is toward the margins of culture and society, where, like their fundamentalist ancestors, they will preach doom from a distance.

    I wasn’t even aware World Vision was a Christian organisation before this.

    I’ve never heard God mentioned in any of their ads or spiels.

    It wouldn’t worry me if someone was helping kids in Rwanda was in a committed gay relationship and having anal or lesbian sex.

    That someone sees that as a problem says a lot about how tiny their minds are.

    Like

  109. Christians must be vigilant to prevent erosion of the Christian faith, as it was received from Christ, the apostles, in the New Testament.

    The sooner this myopic and bigotted view of the world and humanity is eroded away, the better for humanity.

    Like

  110. And now the homosexual marriage activists on Facebook are threatening to not support the “kiddies”.

    Everything was okay two weeks ago.
    Oh, Tobias – get back to work!

    Like

  111. Bones, Christian opposition to same sex marriage isn’t born of hatred of gays. It’s just bollocks mate. A lame straw man argument to misrepresent Christians and to defame them.

    As you know we all need Christ’s blood to redeem us. Christ implores us to sin no more. So how can we in good conscience, encourage others to “do as thou shalt” irrespective of the eternal consequences? How is that loving others?
    I think it would be rash and premature for Christians to have cancelled their sponsorship, to the detriment of the child. But the lobbying would have been totally justified, as Christians having made a commitment to a Christian organisation.
    Christians must be vigilant to prevent erosion of the Christian faith, as it was received from Christ, the apostles, in the New Testament.

    Like

  112. World Vision’s Rich Stearns: ‘A bad decision, but we did it with the right motivations’

    In an interview with Religion News Service on Thursday, Stearns suggested that the number of sponsors lost was under but around 5,000. Those who sponsor a child pay $35 each month, so the loss could have tallied up to $2.1 million a year.

    5000 kiddies eh.

    I hope they all wrote to their sponsor child who they care for so much to tell them why.

    Like

  113. By the time the policy was overturned, the agency reportedly saw a loss of 2,000 child sponsorships — an initial drop of at least $840,000 per year.

    That showed those gays, hey?

    Good work Evangelicals, Jesus would be so proud of you.

    Like

  114. ‘Anyone in opposition is branded a hater and a bigot.’

    Yeah pretty much. Just like someone who doesn’t believe in racial equality isn’t a racist, hey?

    Stop using the Bible to justify your immoral stand.

    The Christian Right agenda is on display here,

    To bully and cajole.

    Keep your money, Brett.

    Stopping the gays is more important than helping the poor.

    Like

  115. Bones,
    Why post such a loaded diatribe of thinly veiled hate speak?
    John shore has clearly got an agenda to portray a twisted version of Christianity and Christian motives for the sole purposes of demonising Christians to frame them as haters. The irony being he is the one bubbling with hate.
    It seems champions of same sex marriage want their lifestyle choices to be accepted by Christians as legitimate, moral, Godly. Anyone in opposition is branded a hater and a bigot.
    Many of these guys won’t stop piling on the hate until Christian ministers are compelled by law to conduct same sex marriage ceremonies.

    If World Vision strays from its Christian moral system then I think it is quite reasonable it’s Christian supporter base would feel alarmed and would be compelled to act. The danger of the slide from its Christian moral standards is that it eventually will reach a point where it is no longer Christian based.

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  116. Q, can you back up your claim of the ” majority of people in the world who ARENT Christians think homosexual marriage is ridiculous”?

    While I personally do not favour it the Australian Government did go out and do a survey on that very question. Have a look at http://www.aph.gov.au/parliamentary_business/committees/house_of_representatives_committees?url=spla/bill%20marriage/survey.htm

    It would seem that at least in Australia your claim may not be accurate. Some 177 thousand agree to changing the law and some 98 thousand disagree.

    Its an interesting read (the submissions) and may change your view on what the world really thinks on the matter. I hold the view that we as christains have no biblical (God given right) to control what the world thinks or does, but rather the commission to preach the Word to them and pray for them.

    Like

  117. From John SHore

    Why the surprise at learning how much evangelicals hate gay people?

    There’s been a lot of chatter around the Internet lately from Christians who, thanks to the World Vision debacle, have been surprised to learn just how deeply the evangelical right despises gay people.
    How can that possibly be a surprise to anyone? Where in “You’re going to hell because God deplores you!” does anyone see even a hint of affection or respect?

    The evangelical right’s attitude toward gay people has always been about pure hatred. The Bible’s just an excuse (and a shallow one at that) for that hatred.

    The difference between the Westboro Baptist hate-mongers and the Southern Baptist Convention (the largest Protestant body in the United States) has never been a difference of substance; it’s only been a difference in style.

    Why does anyone think that so many of us out here have been fighting so hard for so long to bring a new and freaking better Christianity into the world? LGBT people get beaten. They get killed. They get spat upon. They get run over. They get doused with gasoline and lit on fire. They get bullied so ferociously that they kill themselves rather than suffer another moment of it.

    Those things don’t happen sometimes. They don’t happen every once in a while. They happen all the time, all over the world. And it’s all perpetrated in the name of Christianity. If you believe that the Bible teaches God condemns to hell all “unrepentant” gay people, then why wouldn’t you pound to death every gay person you saw? Doing so would be doing God’s work, by extending God’s will into the world. That’s what Christians are supposed to do.

    We need a new Christianity. And we need it now. (I defined one, by the way. This shit’s not complicated.) And I think one of the first things we also need to do is be very clear about the fact that no one who believes that God finds gay people morally reprehensible is, in fact, a Christian.
    They’re just not, okay? Saying “I’m a Christian, and gay people are going to hell” is like saying, “I’m a feminist, and women should remain pregnant and obey their husbands,” or “I’m not a racist, and white people should own black people.” One automatically cancels out the other.

    No one gets to declare that they follow the Prince of Peace while at the same time declaring that gay people deserve to be burned alive forever. I don’t care who you are, or how respectable you pretend to be: that pig doesn’t fly. Ignorant bigotry is ignorant bigotry, whether it’s wearing a tie or not. I know it. You know it. And God sure as hell knows it.

    This is a war, folks. It’s always been a war. It was a war when the evangelicals said the Bible supports slavery. It was a war when they said the Bible supports denying women the vote. And it’s a war when they say the Bible condemns homosexuality.

    In a war people choose sides. They have to, because they realize that not doing so will only cause more death and suffering.

    If you’re a Christian who is just now realizing that you are part of the problem if you don’t refute the Christian right with anywhere near the vigor with which they so horrendously persecute gay people, then hallelujah for World Vision’s ignorant cowardice.

    The middle ground is where people fall and die. Stop standing there. Come to our side. Join us in fighting the good fight. We who know that the Bible does not condemn gay people will win this fight, because God is always on the side of what is right and just.

    The sooner you join the winning team, the better for all. And most certainly the better for you, should you have to, say, answer to God tomorrow for why you waited.

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/2014/03/why-the-surprise-at-learning-how-much-evangelicals-hate-gay-people/

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  118. ‘Compassionate people all over America are now marked as hateful and murderous. ‘

    Actually I knew it was always there. This just confirms it.

    They’d rather people die then have their morality upset.

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  119. I suppose you wouldn’t care if the paramedic who rescues you or the surgeon who saves your life is a faggot.

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  120. “While same sex marriage might be deemed normal and morally acceptable in a secular humanistic value system”

    Might be worth remembering that the majority of people in the world who ARENT Christians think homosexual marriage is ridiculous. The homosexuals are trying their hardest to convince people that only fundamentalists are not for homosexual marriage, but it simply isn’t true.

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  121. Well there is a secular humanistic value system in conflict with a biblical based Christian value system.

    While same sex marriage might be deemed normal and morally acceptable in a secular humanistic value system, it is totally at odds with a biblical based Christian value system.

    Given World Vision is a Christian based aid organisation its no wonder they alienated a huge section of their Christian partners when they made this error.

    When secular humanism creeps into Christian organisations I think it undermines the Christian belief value system. A bit like those Christian schools who accept non-Christian teachers. The teaching inevitably undermines Christian belief within the students.

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  122. Phoenix Preacher note: I found this compelling and asked if I could reprint it and Pastor Hawkins graciously agreed.

    “World Vision’s Shortsightedness: Alan Hawkins”

    World Vision is on everyone’s mind. They stepped into the middle of the most volatile religious-political conflict on the planet. Offering a neat self-exhonerating explanation of a new policy giving tacit endorsement to gay marriage they threw their conservative constituency into frothing confusion. 48 hours later, an apology and a recanting of their avant-garde policy put them back in step with their constituency.

    What they gave us was a glimpse into the future. What they failed to anticipate was collateral damage. I write this because that piece of the problem has been so overlooked. When multitudes complained and many promised to withdraw pledges it changed the scenario. Suddenly two issues arose. One got all the attention the other is my focus. The first was of course the benefactors of World Vision dollars, specifically the children supported by pledges.

    Overlooked in all of this was the pending demonization of World Vision’s constituency by untold numbers of people who spoke up for the children. Most of those who spoke up were condemning people for withdrawing pledges while they themselves had not been donors. To be fair many new pledges were garnered but where were all of these concerned and compassionate souls before this political hot potato? Where were these morally outraged people before WV tossed their hat into the ring of political correctness? Doesn’t it seem odd for people who were on the sidelines to condemn people who had been in the game, many of them for years? It was the height of hypocrisy for people doing nothing to condemn people who were doing something.

    America is first and foremost the land of freedom. Central to that freedom is the freedom of conscience. The freedom to determine the dictates of ones’ own heart. Freedom to live by conscience without coercion. At the root of religious liberty is a respect for individual conscience. World Vision created a perfect storm. They set the grid for future suppression of conscience. In the middle of it all? The lives of children. The discussion of our cultural conflict over homosexual marriage was obfuscated behind a wall of kids. You would think that the WV donors were literally throwing kids into the abyss by all the hue and cry that was raised. You would think the donors were terrorists hiding within a schoolroom.

    World Vision cannot hide their guilt in this. They put children at risk and they put their donors in a conundrum of conscience that they knew could not be easily solved. They forced people to choose between conscience and children. The left, secretly could not be more pleased. Even in losing this round they won again. They were able to portray Bible believing Christians as bigots, hate mongers and murderers of children. Witch hunting has found a new definition in America but the school text books will never tell you the unvarnished truth.

    Compassionate people all over America are now marked as hateful and murderous. It is easy to dismiss those that you consider evil. World Vision has retracted and apologized but they have inadvertently labelled their own constituency as enemies of virtue. WV leaders were careless stewards of the people who support them. This sad chapter will have endless implications. However, it is not the faithful donors who should account for this mess. It was conscience that drove them to support WV and a crisis of conscience that cause them to be endlessly condemned. We must not hate conscience. We must not destroy it. We must find ways to solve our cultural dilemmas without harming innocent people whether they be donors or benefactors. We must find better means to wage our wars.

    http://michaelnewnham.com/?p=16967

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  123. Well the board of WV unanimously realized that they had made a mistake and brought disunity.

    Looks like everything’s back to normal.
    Unless people now start attacking WV for going back to their long standing policy of 3 days ago. Let’s hope the attack hounds let WV get back to their original goals.

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  124. It’s criminal that people would withdraw money to support the world’s most marginalised people over such an issue.

    I sponsor children through a Catholic agency.

    I really don’t care what their attitude to gays is, though I suspect it would be traditional.

    They’re doing the work of Christ.

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  125. Looks like they just returned to their position of a week ago, and the week before that, and last year etc.

    But watch now for the real backlash.

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  126. Oh, and it’s not “gay panic”. It’s the leadership of a Christian organisation making a terrible decision that was obviously going to cause problems. As such, it’s irresponsible.

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  127. “and most will not go looking for another organisation to support”
    I don’t know how you can say that with any certainty.

    The leadership of World Vision made an error in judgement on this. It’s not ethical to do what they’ve done.

    I don’t support any children through world vision, but if I did, I wouldn’t stop supporting the individual child that I had some relationship with though.

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  128. In part she says: I’m a longtime World Vision supporter and I’ve seen firsthand the effectiveness of its work, particularly child sponsorships. Like my friend Nish, I beg Christians not to drop their sponsorships or monthly giving to World Vision because they don’t like the idea of gay people working for the organization. (If you’re having second thoughts about that, just imagine writing a letter to your sponsored child explaining exactly why you can’t help him or his community anymore.)

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  129. THIS blog post by Rachel Held Evans is right on the money regarding this story….and it is so very telling of the state of some peoples thinking that she had to close off comments after only a few days as things spiraled into hateful commenting.

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  130. Good grief! Of course the fact that as they ‘punish’ this apostate organisation by stopping their giving (and most will not go looking for another organisation to support) they will themselves have transgressed by swallowing a camel (not feeding, clothing, caring for the sick, the needy, the naked) while straining a gnat.

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