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“40 Questions For Christians Now Waving Rainbow Flags”

1/07/2015

The Gospel Coalition website has posted the following questionnaire and commentary from Kevin DeYoung, senior pastor of University Reformed Church in East Lansing, Michigan:

“[P]erhaps what’s been most difficult is seeing some of our friends, some of our family members, and some of the folks we’ve sat next to in church giving their hearty ‘Amen’ to a practice we still think is a sin and a decision we think is bad for our country. It’s one thing for the whole nation to throw a party we can’t in good conscience attend. It’s quite another to look around for friendly faces to remind us we’re not alone and then find that they are out there jamming on the dance floor…

“If you consider yourself a Bible-believing Christian, a follower of Jesus whose chief aim is to glorify God and enjoy him forever, there are important questions I hope you will consider before picking up your flag and cheering on the sexual revolution. These questions aren’t meant to be snarky or merely rhetorical. They are sincere, if pointed, questions that I hope will cause my brothers and sisters with the new rainbow themed avatars to slow down and think about the flag you’re flying.”

Fair enough, Kevin. After the jump I will take you at your word that you are sincere in your desire to understand why we believe what we believe.

For the rest of you, here are the Beatles going to work…

animated abbey lane

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What Is “Sin”?

28/06/2015

Paul wrote, “For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.”

Well…duh!

We don’t have God’s power or might or authority.
We can’t create a universe out of nothingness.
We can’t transcend time and space.
We can’t create life or consciousness, only pass them along.

Chiding human beings for not being as glorious as God is mean spirited at best, hypocritical at worse.

Unless Paul wasn’t writing about God’s
power or might or authority at all.

Jesus, in the Sermon on the Mount, said, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”

How can we possibly do that?!?!?

Well, let’s start by looking at those verses not in isolation, but in context.

Jesus is delivering the Sermon on the Mount; the verses immediately preceding “be…perfect” are these:

“Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.

“And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also. And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain. Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.

“Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.

“For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?

“Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”

Jesus is not talking about power, Jesus is talking about love.

Love: The one thing humans can do as perfectly as God if they choose to.

Paul, when he writes of humans failing and coming short of the glory of God, is writing about that: Not humans breaking cultural taboos and traditions, but failing to love one another.

If you love others, you won’t kill them unjustly.
If you love others, you won’t steal from them.
If you love others, you won’t betray them.
If you love others, you won’t lie to cause them trouble.
If you love others, you won’t want to take what they have.

If you have to be told not to do these things, you are not perfect in love as God is.

If you avoid these things only because you fear punishment, you are not perfect in love as God is.

If you avoid these things because you seek a reward, you are not perfect in love as God is.

If you even have to think about these things, you are not perfect in love as God is.

When you love others, your instinct is to see what is best for them, what will make them happy and able to find peace.

When you love others, you can only find your own peace and happiness when you know others are free to find their peace and happiness.

Sin is not watching certain forms of entertainment or wearing certain clothes or smoking certain plants or ingesting certain compounds or eating certain foods or saying certain words or not following certain rituals.

At worse, those are just symptoms of sin.

I’ll tell you what sin is:
Sin is the opposite of love.

Helen Keller on Satan

Sin is attitude, not action.

Action can do great harm, of course, but unless the attitude motivating the action is sinful, the act itself is not.

And if the attitude is sinful, no action is necessary.

This is what Jesus was getting at when he taught about lusting in one’s heart being the same thing as adultery, or calling one’s brother a fool being the same thing as murdering him.

He wasn’t equating noticing a person’s attractiveness with sin;
you can look at pretty people all day long and not sin.

Sin comes in when one stops merely appreciating the other person’s beauty and instead begins thinking of how to satisfy their desires with that person regardless of how it might hurt someone else.

If you are single and the other person is single, you’re free to see if it might be possible to build a relationship with them. If either of you is in a committed relationship and yet you still pursue them, your attitude is one of supreme disregard to the mate who is being betrayed.

That’s not love.

That’s sin.

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Problem/s Solved

10/06/2015

R
SEX
L
I
G
I
O
N

always for love
never for money

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We’re Not From Here

3/05/2015

The Anti-Theist vs Young Earth Creationist hissy fit continues apace, with both sides screaming “Is not! / Is, too!” at each other ad infinitum.

iso-propyl-cyanide

The truth, as always, seems to elude both of them.

Latest clue to the puzzle points us back into the depths of interstellar space again.

“Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins, which are important ingredients of life on Earth,” the study’s lead author, Arnaud Belloche, of the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy… The detection of a molecule with a branched carbon backbone in interstellar space, in a region where stars are being formed, is interesting because it shows that interstellar chemistry is indeed capable of producing molecules with such a complex, branched structure.”

So in other words, more evidence that life may have originated off of this planet instead of on it, and if it did originate on Earth then it may have still be significantly changed and irrevocably altered by extraterrestrial influence.

Bad news for the Anti-Theists:
Intelligent Design can’t be taken off the table since there is no way of determining where & how life originated.

Bad news for the Creationists:
Billions and billions of years, poindexters.

Good news for the rest of us:
Ain’t the universe wonderful?

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Everything Else Is Bullshit

3/05/2015

meet Jesus

There is only one way to love God, and that is by following His teaching thru Christ:
“A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”

Anything other than loving one another as God loves us thru Christ is bullshit (Jesus’ words, not mine). Love never seeks to harm, love always seeks to help and, if help is rejected, is prepared to help if the person changes their mind.

Past that, we are to mind our own business, live as peaceably as possible, and look out for those in need. Period. End of discussion. That’s it. Everything else is commentary; fun to discuss but pointless without love.

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What I Believe

16/04/2015

I believe there is a Prime Mover behind the universe, a transcendent consciousness we Western Christians commonly call God.

By definition, an eternal & infinite conscious which by nature is constantly aware of every iota of its creation.

A consciousness which on occasion has made its presence known much like bonsai masters make their presence known to their trees.

I believe the teachings of the rabbi we refer to today as Jesus Christ are a manifestation of what the Prime Mover desires for us. I believe nothing is forbidden if it is done from love (and the Golden Rule is the first litmus test in that).

I believe the physical universe behaves under a set of observable scientific principles, and many of the things the Bible refers to as miracles are either a transcendent Prime Mover alerting people to a natural event ahead of time, or a rare but nonetheless statistically inevitable event occurring at a time that benefits the observers.

That being said, I think there are times when the Prime Mover acts directly in human affairs.

But the most important thing in my mind is this:
All of the above is trivia if we do not love and care for one another as the Prime Mover loves and cares for us; to love one another is to love God, and to love God is to love one another.

THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE.

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Troublemaker

3/04/2015

should have obeyed the law

 

Della Reese – “Troublemaker”

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A Message To My Christian Brothers & Sisters

26/03/2015

This one is for my co-religionists, so here’s a cute animated gif of a bouncing cube of red jello for the non-Christians.

animated bouncing jello cube

I’ll see the rest of you after the jump.

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Teacheth Not Thy Childe The Bible

17/02/2015

After the jump I prattle on about a topic only of interest to Christians — and even then only some, not all. To entertain the rest of you I present this animated gif of Tex Avery’s Droopy:

animated droopy hooray

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Indians

10/02/2015

05_discovery_wyeth_indianprayer

a good Indian
stays on the reservation
a better Indian
leaves it

some people think
that means they are better
because they stopped
being an Indian and left
to become something else

actually it means
they’re better Indians
because they aren’t letting
others decide who is / is not
a good Indian

when others decide
who is / is not an Indian
they’re making “bad Indian”
the default
and the good Indian
is the Indian who stays
where they’re told

the better Indian
ignores this

I am a follower of Christ
and I’m off the reservation

.

.

.

art by NC Wyeth

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