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View Full Version : Confronting Right Wing Christians: Is it worth it or are we going about it the wrong



Junebug68
06-05-2008, 01:03 PM
Evoman (1000+ posts) Thu Jun-05-08 04:14 AM
Original message
Confronting Right Wing Christians: Is it worth it or are we going about it the wrong way?
Edited on Thu Jun-05-08 04:18 AM by Evoman
One of the conventional ideas I see from many of the atheists here, along with a heaping number of liberal christians, is the idea that we need to confront the fundies and right wing christians. Not only do we need to disagree with them, but we need to be active in "fighting" them or debating them.

The more I think about it, the more I am starting to come to terms with the fact that that is the wrong way to go about doing things. These realizations come less from conversations I have with people on DU or on the internet, but more with the realities of my life and experiences. It's something I have been spending considerable brain power on, for one reason or other.

As many of you know, I have several christian friends, including a couple that would actually classify as right wing christians. No lie, I am friends with christian fundamentalists. Good friends. Since elementary.

If they were truly your friends, you wouldn't see the need to change them. You would love them as they are.


......... So what am I trying to say here? As far as I've seen, there are three useful, effective ways to get fundies to change their world-view:
1)Introduce to them to people who don't believe as they do, and force them to confront their prejudices and stereotypes. If they hate gays, get them to meet gay people.

Note the use of the word "force." Nice.


2)Subtly encourage them in any intellectual pursuit. I like to think that I encouraged my friend's interest in history, which led him to university to study history. Education, especially in the social sciences, correlates high with a reduction on religousity (so I've heard).

So if you didn't encourage them, they would never engage in any intellectual pursuit? Riiiiight.


3)Encourage them to see fundamentalism as non-normal. If there is one common characteristic I see of fundies, is that they like being a majority, and like to conform. When they stay insulated in their christian communities, they don't get a chance to see that fundamentalism is really not as big a majority as they think it is.

Just because you don't like it doesn't mean it's "non-normal."


..........It ain't always fucking easy, thats for sure, but I'm serious. Fundies, despite all their bullshit, have some good chacteristics. Many of them can be loyal, hard-working people. They just have to broaden their damn horizons, and they can't do it unless we all give it shot. I think liberal christians have a better shot at this than we atheists do, but we can't just sit on the sidelines.

On a higher level (society level), I agree. Don't think I'm getting soft, because I'm not. When fundies are trying to pass laws, change government, and oppress people, you got to keep them in fucking check with everything you have. You have to fight the fight. You can't give them a free pass, like we have been giving them for the past 30 years.

Suppress the will of the people!


But on a personal level, fighting just isn't going to get you anywhere. The fundies have such compartmentalized mind, and are so immune to reason, that we aren't going to change minds by fighting. If you fight them, if you confuse them, if you out-logic them, they just run back to the isolation of their fundie communities, and you just lost your chance to do something important. Influence can be so fucking strong if you give it a chance.

The ignorance and hate in the post makes me want to puke. And he doesn't even know it, he thinks he's doing good by keeping people in "fucking check," that's the scary part!


AlinPA (1000+ posts) Thu Jun-05-08 07:27 AM
Response to Reply #6
8. Yep, but I'd prefer just to ignore them and not associate with them. Life is too
precious to try to do maintenance on irrational people. Patience is maintenance.

Nice stereotyping. Apparently, that's only ok when liberals do it.

And so on and so on....



http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=214x174404

Elspeth
06-05-2008, 01:27 PM
Actually, that's fairly tolerant for DU. You should see what happens every time the Catholic Church gets mentioned.

Junebug68
06-05-2008, 01:33 PM
Actually, that's fairly tolerant for DU. You should see what happens every time the Catholic Church gets mentioned.

True. Still repulsive though.

BSR
06-05-2008, 01:34 PM
As a right-wing "Fundie" I would like to tell this DUmmy where he can put his thoughts and opinions about what I should or should not be doing/saying/thinking. My convictions are alot stronger than his, and nither he, nor DU as a whole, or Democrats as a group are going to change the way I feel or think about what I hold as my values.

Junebug68
06-05-2008, 01:45 PM
As a right-wing "Fundie" I would like to tell this DUmmy where he can put his thoughts and opinions about what I should or should not be doing/saying/thinking. My convictions are alot stronger than his, and nither he, nor DU as a whole, or Democrats as a group are going to change the way I feel or think about what I hold as my values.

Amen!!!!!!!!!!!!

Elspeth
06-05-2008, 01:47 PM
True. Still repulsive though.

Oh, no doubt. The liberal Christians over there get reamed. I remember once posting a link to Antiques Road Show about an Einstein letter:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=show_mesg&forum=389&topic_id=3343712&mesg_id=3345019

Not much in the way of response. But lots of response to Einstein's criticisms of religion.

MrsSmith
06-05-2008, 05:46 PM
Of course, these are the same people who think it should be illegal for those fundies to explain their beliefs. Proselytizing and worship should be kept completely private...all that "go into your closet" stuff they take out of context so frequently. :rolleyes: But we're the ones who need "educated."

Shooster
06-05-2008, 07:19 PM
It's hard to believe some people actually think this way. I have always known they believe they are more intelligent than the right wing but this is beyond comprehension. :eek: I wonder if we could get them to try it out on the Taliban and see how it works. :D

jinxmchue
06-06-2008, 12:59 PM
Now imagine the DUmp monkeys' reactions had this guy been posting about how to change atheists' beliefs.

LogansPapa
06-06-2008, 02:09 PM
I have zero problem with people of faith.

Like gays or anyone else, I employ my peripheral vision and avoid them like the plague.

I simply donít allow them to sponge my time - as I recognize it for what it is, a waste of resource. ;)

Aklover
06-06-2008, 02:17 PM
I always thought it best to avoid discussions with irrational people, that applies just as easily to libtards as it does to fundamentalist.

jinxmchue
06-06-2008, 04:27 PM
I always thought it best to avoid discussions with irrational people, that applies just as easily to libtards as it does to fundamentalist.

So I'm irrational?

movie buff
06-06-2008, 07:53 PM
As a conservative Christian who recently completed my first year at a theological seminary to prepare me for one day entering the monistry, I would point out to "Evoman" what a colossal hypocrite he is, based on that thread.
He claims to have Christian friends, but I wonder how many of them would stay friends with him if they read that hateful, insulting thread in which he encourages bigotry against their beliefs. He slings around the deliberately insulting, anti- Christian slur term 'fundy' (If he wasn't deliberately trying to insult them, why not just stick to more neutral terms like 'Conservative Christians'?), and also slings around vicious, inaccurate stereotypes of Christians (He thinks we're "Immune to reason?" You can't get much more hateful than that). In fact, it's hysterical that he discusses how prejudiced and intolerant Christians supposedly are, yet his hateful comments in that thread reveal that if he wants to really confront bigotry, all he has to do is look in a mirror. Finally, in a true display of hypocrisy, he at one point states that "Fundies" are trying to "oppress people," while at another section of his thread, he encourages his fellow DUmmies to force conservative Christians to change their beliefs. If that is not the true definition of oppressing people, I don't know what is.
I'll pray for "Evoman," that his heart would be softened and purged of his hatred, and that in fact, his Christian friends would be the ones having an influence on him, rather than the other way around.

Aklover
06-07-2008, 12:15 AM
So I'm irrational?



Not that familiar with you yet.

MrsSmith
06-07-2008, 03:20 PM
Not that familiar with you yet.

Jinx is a "fundie," as am I...meaning that we are both conservative Christians, living in a personal relationship with Christ and understanding basic Christian theology. :)

InspiredHome
06-07-2008, 10:02 PM
Me three. As well as a history and political science student. Delving into personal study of originalism. :D
Fascinating stuff.

(formerly MrsFerret)

AmPat
06-08-2008, 08:11 AM
I have zero problem with people of faith.

Like gays or anyone else, I employ my peripheral vision and avoid them like the plague.

I simply donít allow them to sponge my time - as I recognize it for what it is, a waste of resource. ;)

You have no faith in anything?:confused:
Many here at CU are professing Christians, you spend time here.:cool:

LogansPapa
06-08-2008, 10:21 AM
You have no faith in anything?:confused:
Many here at CU are professing Christians, you spend time here.:cool:

I have faith - I just choose not to cram my faith down the throats of strangers on the street. My faith is a solemn thing - to be shared with few and only in an appropriate place. Shaking a Bible in someone's face and condemning them to Hell is not faith.

;)

The Night Owl
06-08-2008, 12:56 PM
So I'm irrational?

I would say that your faith is irrational, but I would not go so far as to say that having faith makes you irrational about everything. If believing in God were rational, faith would not be required.

InspiredHome
06-08-2008, 04:45 PM
I have faith - I just choose not to cram my faith down the throats of strangers on the street. My faith is a solemn thing - to be shared with few and only in an appropriate place. Shaking a Bible in someone's face and condemning them to Hell is not faith.

;)

I prefer to read my Bible rather than shake it in someone's face. If you're not living it you have no business telling others how to live.

MrsSmith
06-08-2008, 04:51 PM
I have faith - I just choose not to cram my faith down the throats of strangers on the street. My faith is a solemn thing - to be shared with few and only in an appropriate place. Shaking a Bible in someone's face and condemning them to Hell is not faith.

;)


No person can condemn anyone to hell, except him/herself.

Sharing the truth of Christ with a fallen world is an act of love.

MrsSmith
06-08-2008, 04:52 PM
I would say that your faith is irrational, but I would not go so far as to say that having faith makes you irrational about everything. If believing in God were rational, faith would not be required.

In point of fact, when you have a personal relationship with His Son, faith is nothing like you imagine it to be. It would be not only irrational, but completely insane to disbelieve Him.

The Night Owl
06-08-2008, 05:08 PM
In point of fact, when you have a personal relationship with His Son, faith is nothing like you imagine it to be.

You're stating an opinion, not a fact.


It would be not only irrational, but completely insane to disbelieve Him.

Faith based on insufficient evidence is always irrational regardless of the depth of feeling.

InspiredHome
06-08-2008, 05:19 PM
You're stating an opinion, not a fact.



Faith based on insufficient evidence is always irrational regardless of the depth of feeling.

I find the evidence to be extremely sufficient. To some, no amount or type of evidence will be. There will always be a reason to disbelieve. Christianity is a faith based on evidence. It is not blind faith. Some Christians, yes, can not explain what they believe or why and to me this is a disgrace. However, there are many, much like myself who are versed in apologetics and are able to give the reasons for our beliefs. These reasons, however, are not meant to convert anyone but only to answer objections. If there is no will to believe than no amount of evidence will be enough to change hearts and minds.

The Night Owl
06-08-2008, 05:56 PM
I find the evidence to be extremely sufficient. To some, no amount or type of evidence will be.

Feel free to present your evidence.

MrsSmith
06-08-2008, 06:22 PM
You're stating an opinion, not a fact.
No, I'm not. :D I merely pointing out to a blind man that the rainbow has colors. I can't force you to see it.




Faith based on insufficient evidence is always irrational regardless of the depth of feeling.

Exactly. However, there is no insufficiency in the evidence.

InspiredHome
06-08-2008, 06:30 PM
Tag team fundies. Hee hee :D

LogansPapa
06-08-2008, 07:07 PM
I prefer to read my Bible rather than shake it in someone's face. If you're not living it you have no business telling others how to live.

But see - that's where folks take their 'mission' way past their place. They feel, because they know their crap doesn't smell, they can do His job and judge you. That's where I become extremely angry and protective of my personal space, time and resources. Save it for church - is my position. On the street - I treat these folks just like panhandlers, and believe me, it ain't pretty.

3rd-try
06-08-2008, 07:08 PM
Feel free to present your evidence.


You're arguing something you have no understanding of. The reality is, neither do I. At this point, I don't have this amazing faith that gives strength in the worst of times. But, I've damn sure seen it in action. I've known some brilliant people who were very religious. Very committed, and their religious teachings figured into every major decision they made. No, I don't "get it" yet, just like you.
However, I don't simply assume my powers of logic are above anyone who's deeply religious. I think it's way more complex than that. All I'm saying is, don't develop some DU'ish attitude toward the possibility of life altering faith. I've never met a person who regretted finding. You never know.

BSR
06-08-2008, 07:34 PM
But see - that's where folks take their 'mission' way past their place. They feel, because they know their crap doesn't smell, they can do His job and judge you. That's where I become extremely angry and protective of my personal space, time and resources. Save it for church - is my position. On the street - I treat these folks just like panhandlers, and believe me, it ain't pretty.

Christians dont "feel like their crap doesn't smell" we know we are all sinners, not just you. We also don't think we "can do his job and judge you". You are judged by one person, "big guns upstairs". We aren't judging you, but sharing with you the word of God so can see you go to Heaven with us.

LogansPapa
06-08-2008, 07:49 PM
Christians dont "feel like their crap doesn't smell" we know we are all sinners, not just you. We also don't think we "can do his job and judge you". You are judged by one person, "big guns upstairs". We aren't judging you, but sharing with you the word of God so can see you go to Heaven with us.

Let's try to even half-way honest about this topic - ALL supposedly devout Christians yearn to be Their Brother's Keeper. It fills a massive hole they have in their lives and I've been set upon by folks that have dope addict children that think they've got the answers for what they believe troubles me and my family. Instead of addressing the massive cavern in their own experience - they jump over one square on life's chess board and glom onto somebody else's existence to make them feel whole and have purpose in their dreary life. For me at least, and the way I was raised - that defines hypocrisy perfectly.

BSR
06-08-2008, 08:01 PM
Let's try to even half-way honest about this topic - ALL supposedly devout Christians yearn to be Their Brother's Keeper. It fills a massive hole they have in their lives and I've been set upon by folks that have dope addict children that think they've got the answers for what they believe troubles me and my family. Instead of addressing the massive cavern in their own experience - they jump over one square on life's chess board and glom onto somebody else's existence to make them feel whole and have purpose in their dreary life. For me at least, and the way I was raised - that defines hypocrisy perfectly.


Completely false and you know it. Its a stereotype that Liberals "think' Christians are doing and you just perpetuate it.

I personally don't share the word of Jesus with anyone. The true meaning of spreading the word of Christ is to share with people who don't know about him that he is your savior and giving them the opportunity to learn about him. Everyone in America has heard of Jesus by now, its between you and him if you accept him as your savior. Not my business. I do support financially as well as spiritually, missions to spread the word of Jesus in parts of the world where they've never heard of him. Giving them the chance to accept Jesus or not. If they choose not to, that between them and God.

So no, Its not ALL supposedly devout Christians yearning to be their brother's keeper. Because you are not my brother. We might have the same father, but we don't know each other. But that's your choice, not mine or other Christians.

MrsSmith
06-08-2008, 08:15 PM
Let's try to even half-way honest about this topic - ALL supposedly devout Christians yearn to be Their Brother's Keeper. It fills a massive hole they have in their lives and I've been set upon by folks that have dope addict children that think they've got the answers for what they believe troubles me and my family. Instead of addressing the massive cavern in their own experience - they jump over one square on life's chess board and glom onto somebody else's existence to make them feel whole and have purpose in their dreary life. For me at least, and the way I was raised - that defines hypocrisy perfectly.

ALL supposedly devout Christians yearn to be Their Brother's Keeper. It fills a massive hole they have in their lives...

Actually, the presence of Christ fills the hole that all people have in their hearts. "Keeping our brothers" is not a yearning, it's a command. It's done to please our Savior. I'm sure it must be terrible to have people in your life that are willing to help you if you need it. :rolleyes:

InspiredHome
06-08-2008, 08:29 PM
Let's try to even half-way honest about this topic - ALL supposedly devout Christians yearn to be Their Brother's Keeper. It fills a massive hole they have in their lives and I've been set upon by folks that have dope addict children that think they've got the answers for what they believe troubles me and my family. Instead of addressing the massive cavern in their own experience - they jump over one square on life's chess board and glom onto somebody else's existence to make them feel whole and have purpose in their dreary life. For me at least, and the way I was raised - that defines hypocrisy perfectly.

Hurling elephants much? We as Christians desire to walk in the light. If we see a fellow believer erring we will first go to him privately, than to two or three others, the elders etc. just as it is prescribed in the Bible to address such issues among BELIEVERS. We cannot hold unbelievers to the same standards. That is between them and their maker.

BSR
06-08-2008, 08:30 PM
Hurling elephants much? We as Christians desire to walk in the light. If we see a fellow believer erring we will first go to him privately, than to two or three others, the elders etc. just as it is prescribed in the Bible to address such issues among BELIEVERS. We cannot hold unbelievers to the same standards. That is between them and their maker.

Exactly...

Space Gravy
06-08-2008, 08:42 PM
So I'm irrational?

Fred Phelps, Yes. MrsSmith and you, probably not.

The Night Owl
06-08-2008, 09:01 PM
You're arguing something you have no understanding of. The reality is, neither do I. At this point, I don't have this amazing faith that gives strength in the worst of times. But, I've damn sure seen it in action.

Evidence is defined as an outward sign. None of us can evaluate in any meaningful way what you're describing as evidence of God.

You may have experienced what you firmly believe to be evidence of God or evidence of God's will in action, but that, in and of itself, is not evidence of anything other than your willingness to believe.


I've known some brilliant people who were very religious. Very committed, and their religious teachings figured into every major decision they made. No, I don't "get it" yet, just like you.
However, I don't simply assume my powers of logic are above anyone who's deeply religious. I think it's way more complex than that.

I haven't argued that religious people are stupid. Such an argument would be impossible to defend because human history is replete with examples of highly intelligent religious people.


All I'm saying is, don't develop some DU'ish attitude toward the possibility of life altering faith. I've never met a person who regretted finding. You never know.

As a person who once had faith, I can assure you that I don't want it back.

The Night Owl
06-08-2008, 09:17 PM
Fred Phelps, Yes. MrsSmith and you, probably not.

Fred Phelps is a Calvinist and that makes him somewhat different from the average Christian of today, but what really makes him different from the average Christian is not what he believes but the fact that he is willing to employ confrontational and reprehensible tactics to espouse his beliefs.

BSR
06-08-2008, 09:30 PM
Fred Phelps is a Calvinist and that makes him somewhat different from the average Christian of today, but what really makes him different from the average Christian is not what he believes but the fact that he is willing to employ confrontational and reprehensible tactics to espouse his beliefs.

Fred Phelps doesn't represent true Christians anymore than Osama Bin Laden represents true Muslims.

So my question is, do you label all Muslims as terrorists like you label all Christians as Fred Phelps policy followers who just don't speak their minds ?

The Night Owl
06-08-2008, 11:00 PM
Fred Phelps doesn't represent true Christians anymore than Osama Bin Laden represents true Muslims.

I didn't claim that Fred Phelps represents true Christianity, whatever that is. In fact, what I wrote is that Fred Phelps is different from the average Christian in that he is...

1. A Calvinist.
2. An extremist.

AmPat
06-08-2008, 11:05 PM
Originally Posted by LogansPapa
I have faith - I just choose not to cram my faith down the throats of strangers on the street. My faith is a solemn thing - to be shared with few and only in an appropriate place. Shaking a Bible in someone's face and condemning them to Hell is not faith.
I see these same arguments used for anti-Christian threads. In fact I see it so often I doubt that it happens more than it is used as an excuse to bash Christians. I have been a Christian for many years and have never committed any of the above offenses.

LogansPapa
06-08-2008, 11:06 PM
When it comes to passing judgment on those of other beliefs, not 'of the body', Christians have spread their oppression as far as ships of old would take them. So save the "we do it for our brother's good" noise. The supposed charity never comes without a very sharp hook.

BSR
06-08-2008, 11:12 PM
I didn't claim that Fred Phelps represents true Christianity, whatever that is. In fact, what I wrote is that Fred Phelps is different from the average Christian in that he is...

1. A Calvinist.
2. An extremist.


No, you implied the only difference between me (The Average Christian) and Fred Phelps isn't what we believe, but the fact he uses confrontational and reprehensible tactics. That is offensive,


but what really makes him different from the average Christian is not what he believes but the fact that he is willing to employ confrontational and reprehensible tactics to espouse his beliefs.


Let me help you out here. What Fred Phelps believes is EXACTLY what makes him different than average Christians. We do not believe "Fags die, and God laughs" we don't believe "Thank God for 9/11"


Fred is a proclaimed democrat as well, maybe he holds your beliefs?

BSR
06-08-2008, 11:16 PM
When it comes to passing judgment on those of other beliefs, not 'of the body', Christians have spread their oppression as far as ships of old would take them. So save the "we do it for our brother's good" noise. The supposed charity never comes without a very sharp hook.

You're not our brother, LogansPapa. I only hold other Christians accountable for there actions. I am my Christian brother's keeper, just as much as they are my keeper. We hold each other accountable in the eyes of the Lord. You have to answer for yourself when you meet your maker. Your a non-believer that will have to answer to God on your own.

BSR
06-08-2008, 11:18 PM
I see these same arguments used for anti-Christian threads. In fact I see it so often I doubt that it happens more than it is used as an excuse to bash Christians. I have been a Christian for many years and have never committed any of the above offenses.

It's the anti-Christian mem. Proclaim to have faith, but not like Christians because they follow a specific stereotype. :rolleyes:

LogansPapa
06-08-2008, 11:23 PM
I'm a student of history and there's a great deal to answer for in the last two millennium. Our presence in the Middle East presently is just a continuation of that bile. I've got alot of shit to answer for but none of it's anything to do with an attempted conversion of anyone.

BSR
06-08-2008, 11:24 PM
And with that, I am out of this thread. I made a promise with myself along time ago never to debate politics or Religion. Neither one of us are going to chance each others mind, or convert each other. All we are doing is yelling in the wind. SO, instead I will pray that God one day restores your faith Night Owl and LogansPapa in Jesus. I would hate to see you not make it to Heaven. I don't want you to burn in hell like you might think, I want you Heaven with me.

megimoo
06-08-2008, 11:38 PM
Fred Phelps, Yes. MrsSmith and you, probably not.
Calvinists were the original pilgrims driven out of England by the authority's for their religious extremeism that settled in Boston town.

Calvinists are at the extreme edge of Christianity . and Calvin didn't preach forgiveness for sin only that once a sinner always a sinner and all sinners are hell bound .

His justification for a pre damned sinner doing any good in the world was the goodness of GOD that would require a sinner to be good in return but still be hell bound !

"The most important theological position that Calvin took was his formulation of the doctrine of predestination. The early church had struggled with this issue. Since God knew the future, did that mean that salvation was predestined? That is, do human beings have any choice in the matter, or did God make the salvation decision for each of us at the beginning of time? The early church, and the moderate Protestant churches, had decided that God had not predestined salvation for individuals. Salvation was in part the product of human choice.

Calvin, on the other hand, built his reformed church on the concept that salvation was not a choice, but was rather predestined by God from the beginning of time. This mean that individuals were "elected" for salvation by God; this "elect" would form the population of the Calvinist church." !

AmPat
06-09-2008, 04:23 AM
I'm a student of history and there's a great deal to answer for in the last two millennium. Our presence in the Middle East presently is just a continuation of that bile. I've got alot of shit to answer for but none of it's anything to do with an attempted conversion of anyone.
I have nothing from the last two millenia to answer for either. I do believe I have to give an account for the last 49 years and counting.

Are you attempting now to convert people to your viewpoints?

The Night Owl
06-09-2008, 09:09 AM
No, you implied the only difference between me (The Average Christian) and Fred Phelps isn't what we believe, but the fact he uses confrontational and reprehensible tactics. That is offensive.

I think I was pretty clear when I wrote that Fred Phelps is somewhat different from the average Christian in that he is a Calvinist.


Fred is a proclaimed democrat as well, maybe he holds your beliefs?

Fred Phelps was a Democrat many years ago before he started his God Hates Fags campaign, but I haven't seen any evidence that he considers himself one now. I have, however, read an interview in which Phelps indicates that he considers himself to be to the right of Jerry Falwell and the Moral Majority.

The Night Owl
06-09-2008, 09:27 AM
And with that, I am out of this thread. I made a promise with myself along time ago never to debate politics or Religion. Neither one of us are going to chance each others mind, or convert each other. All we are doing is yelling in the wind. SO, instead I will pray that God one day restores your faith Night Owl and LogansPapa in Jesus. I would hate to see you not make it to Heaven. I don't want you to burn in hell like you might think, I want you Heaven with me.

Unless you're going to ask God to send me lots of money, which I will split with you if it comes, then don't bother praying for me.

Seriously, if God exists and is the type of tyrant who would let beings suffer merely because they chose not to believe in his existence during their brief time on Earth, then I want nothing to do with him. Moreover, I see no difference between an eternity of bliss and an eternity of suffering because an eternity of anything eventually becomes intolerable. I mean, seriously... an eternity of repose?

LogansPapa
06-09-2008, 10:05 AM
I have nothing from the last two millenia to answer for either. I do believe I have to give an account for the last 49 years and counting.

Are you attempting now to convert people to your viewpoints?

Not at all. I'm glad folks have found a place that makes them feel safe, warm and dry in a thunder storm - as long as they don't try to tell me the noise is from the hand of God. If He does exist, then He does so but for our tears.

lacarnut
06-09-2008, 10:30 AM
I enjoy dealing with people of faith.

Don't Like gays, liberals or anyone that tries to impose their beliefs on me, I employ my peripheral vision and avoid them like the plague.

I simply don’t allow them to sponge my time - as I recognize it for what it is, a waste of resource. ;)

FIXED :):):)

InspiredHome
06-09-2008, 03:13 PM
The only suffering of "hell* is due to God's granting the wishes of those who asked to be left alone. God withdraws his presence. To me, that is truly hell.

MrsSmith
06-09-2008, 07:08 PM
When it comes to passing judgment on those of other beliefs, not 'of the body', Christians have spread their oppression as far as ships of old would take them. So save the "we do it for our brother's good" noise. The supposed charity never comes without a very sharp hook.

The "supposed" charity goes all over the world, with food, clean water, clothing, shelter, and whatever else is needed. Christians are the most charitable people in world. Along with all the good done for the needs of this world, many are also shown the way to the joy of the Lord and the treasures of the next world. Strangely enough, passing judgement is not a Christian trait. It's amazing how much disinformation is believed in a free country, where anyone could easily learn better.

InspiredHome
06-09-2008, 08:25 PM
Not to mention passing judgment is actually a human trait among a plethora of many. If a Christian is passing judgment wrongly it is not a theological issue it is a human one. Christianity has had such a positive impact on Western Civilization. We enjoy its fruits but fail to acknowledge its contributions. The influence of Christianity on Western Civilization is a topic near and dear to my heart. I wrote a paper on it for a college class during the fall semester last year and I hope to continue to research and write more upon it. Ignorance is not an excuse to rail against the one faith that has made the most positive impact on history.

LogansPapa
06-10-2008, 01:54 PM
Christians are the most charitable people in world. Along with all the good done for the needs of this world, many are also shown the way to the joy of the Lord and the treasures of the next world. Strangely enough, passing judgement is not a Christian trait. It's amazing how much disinformation is believed in a free country, where anyone could easily learn better.

Wonder what these folks would say about that perspective now and how Columbus went about bringing Europeís great bounty to their heathen existence.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a5/Langs_N.Amer.png/661px-Langs_N.Amer.png

Rebel Yell
06-10-2008, 03:17 PM
Unless you're going to ask God to send me lots of money, which I will split with you if it comes, then don't bother praying for me.

Seriously, if God exists and is the type of tyrant who would let beings suffer merely because they chose not to believe in his existence during their brief time on Earth, then I want nothing to do with him. Moreover, I see no difference between an eternity of bliss and an eternity of suffering because an eternity of anything eventually becomes intolerable. I mean, seriously... an eternity of repose?

TNO is to religion what Eyelids is to white people.

LogansPapa
06-10-2008, 03:24 PM
TNO is to religion what Eyelids is to white people.

Maybe just too challenging to address, but no Eyelids.:cool:

Rebel Yell
06-10-2008, 03:30 PM
Maybe just too challenging to address, but no Eyelids.:cool:

His whole reason for being here is to argue religion. Check his post history, I bet at least 80% of his posts are in religious threads. Don't stoop to defending him. At least you're wrong about an array of things, not just one.:D

LogansPapa
06-10-2008, 03:39 PM
His whole reason for being here is to argue religion. Check his post history, I bet at least 80% of his posts are in religious threads. Don't stoop to defending him. At least you're wrong about an array of things, not just one.:D

As in religionís the last vestige of true communism? ;)

Rebel Yell
06-10-2008, 03:42 PM
As in religionís the last vestige of true communism? ;)

That would be true, except for that whole Freedom of Religion thingy.

LogansPapa
06-10-2008, 03:48 PM
That would be true, except for that whole Freedom of Religion thingy.

As in you're 8 years old and you actually have a choice?

Molon Labe
06-10-2008, 04:20 PM
The "supposed" charity goes all over the world, with food, clean water, clothing, shelter, and whatever else is needed. Christians are the most charitable people in world. Along with all the good done for the needs of this world, many are also shown the way to the joy of the Lord and the treasures of the next world. Strangely enough, passing judgement is not a Christian trait. It's amazing how much disinformation is believed in a free country, where anyone could easily learn better.

That is the way it's supposed to work, but there are unfortunately many so called "Christians" who have done things in the name of Christianity that are really not very "Christian" at all. They give all of us a bad name.

LogansPapa
06-10-2008, 04:25 PM
Ainít that the truth.

The Night Owl
06-10-2008, 06:38 PM
The only suffering of "hell* is due to God's granting the wishes of those who asked to be left alone. God withdraws his presence. To me, that is truly hell.

Okay, so let us say that damnation is nothing more than God abandoning those who wish to be abandoned. Once the abandoned realize what a mistake they've made, then why doesn't God, who supposedly has infinite love and mercy, offer them a chance for redemption? Why must the abandoned be allowed to suffer for eternity for making a bad choice in what is, compared to eternity, an ever shrinking span of time?

The Night Owl
06-10-2008, 06:40 PM
The "supposed" charity goes all over the world, with food, clean water, clothing, shelter, and whatever else is needed. Christians are the most charitable people in world. Along with all the good done for the needs of this world, many are also shown the way to the joy of the Lord and the treasures of the next world. Strangely enough, passing judgement is not a Christian trait. It's amazing how much disinformation is believed in a free country, where anyone could easily learn better.

So, do Christians do charity because they think it is the right thing to do or do they do it for the promise of reward in the afterlife? The way I see it, if charity is a good thing to do, then it is a good thing to do regardless of whether God is involved or not. So, why even bring God into it?

The Night Owl
06-10-2008, 06:43 PM
His whole reason for being here is to argue religion. Check his post history, I bet at least 80% of his posts are in religious threads. Don't stoop to defending him. At least you're wrong about an array of things, not just one.:D

I have been summoned to action by The Four Horsemen.

LogansPapa
06-10-2008, 06:46 PM
The price of the charity is the sponging of your time and focus - without end. (reference Jehovah Witness methods for an education on this reality) A doctor heals you wound and sends you on your way, without a lifetime commitment and the entrails of you life being drug out in public for group judgement.

MrsSmith
06-10-2008, 06:54 PM
Wonder what these folks would say about that perspective now and how Columbus went about bringing Europeís great bounty to their heathen existence.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a5/Langs_N.Amer.png/661px-Langs_N.Amer.png

I work with quite a few Native Americans...none of which have ever complained to me about living in insulated houses instead of teepees or mud huts, none of which has ever mentioned wistfully the times when their babies were born without modern medical intervention and half of them died, the times when nature didn't provide quite enough so they starved during the winter, the times when they could expect to live to be 35 or 40, and many died much younger in inter-tribal wars.

Even more strange is the fact that quite a lot are Christians. They support their churches, attend church, believe just as most Christians around the world. Of course, they live in today's world, not the world of hundreds of years ago...

MrsSmith
06-10-2008, 06:59 PM
That is the way it's supposed to work, but there are unfortunately many so called "Christians" who have done things in the name of Christianity that are really not very "Christian" at all. They give all of us a bad name.

Christians are human. Humans mess up all kinds of things. However, for every Fred Phelps out there, there are thousands of real Christians who live the lfe.

Along that line of thought, I heard today about a bike rally at a church in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The Guts Church is hosting a Harley rally and a band (forgot the name) to raise money for work in Haiti. The church has already raised 1/4 million, but need more to support the church, school, and hospital they've built. They currently feed something like 1000 kids every day, but really need to expand that program. They also are working on digging wells to provide clean water.

Strangely enough, this normal Christian occurance did NOT make national news...though it might if Phelps could be convinced to protest it.

MrsSmith
06-10-2008, 07:03 PM
So, do Christians do charity because they think it is the right thing to do or do they do it for the promise of reward in the afterlife? The way I see it, if charity is a good thing to do, then it is a good thing to do regardless of whether God is involved or not. So, why even bring God into it?

Christians give because it is a good thing to do, and because it pleases Christ that we do so. I guess some believe this is tied to a reward in heaven, but most don't. The reward is that it pleases our Savior. What more could we want? :confused:

As for not bringing God into it, what's the point of caring for the needs of this world while ignoring the huge and wonderous benefits of the next? How could we be loving our brothers if we withhold from them the path to joy in this world, and joy in the next? How horribly cruel, to feed the stomach while allowing the soul to wither.

MrsSmith
06-10-2008, 07:06 PM
The price of the charity is the sponging of your time and focus - without end. (reference Jehovah Witness methods for an education on this reality) A doctor heals you wound and sends you on your way, without a lifetime commitment and the entrails of you life being drug out in public for group judgement.

Point one, Jehovah's Witness theology does not match Christian theology. Many consider them a cult born of theologic ignorance.

Point two, and I may be mistaken, but haven't you agreed with the notion of "free" healthcare...instead of having the doctor heal your wound and then extract payment for years and years. :D

LogansPapa
06-10-2008, 07:10 PM
Point one, Jehovah's Witness theology does not match Christian theology. Many consider them a cult born of theologic ignorance.

That's funny - that's exactly what they say about "regular" Christians.


Point two, and I may be mistaken, but haven't you agreed with the notion of "free" healthcare...instead of having the doctor heal your wound and then extract payment for years and years. :D

You'll need to show me - exactly - where I ever said that.:rolleyes:

LogansPapa
06-10-2008, 07:16 PM
I work with quite a few Native Americans...none of which have ever complained to me

Maybe they were just busy trying to thing up the verbiage for the Thank You card they were all going to send you - for their ancestors - for the smallpox, VD, rape and executions by firearms your Christian ancestors brought them, long ago. In as much as many padres saw to it that young Indian men here in California were regularly executed if they werenít willing to help construct the various missions of the time - I can see how their upbringing under the cross has carried on.

MrsSmith
06-10-2008, 07:24 PM
That's funny - that's exactly what they say about "regular" Christians. Of course. As I said, the theology is greatly different. You're the one who called them "regular" Christians.




You'll need to show me - exactly - where I ever said that.:rolleyes:

You may not have. I said I could be wrong. It just seemed funny to act as though the doctor would let go of you quicker than a voluntary organization.

MrsSmith
06-10-2008, 07:30 PM
Maybe they were just busy trying to thing up the verbiage for the Thank You card they were all going to send you - for their ancestors - for the smallpox, VD, rape and executions by firearms your Christian ancestors brought them, long ago. In as much as many padres saw to it that young Indian men here in California were regularly executed if they werenít willing to help construct the various missions of the time - I can see how their upbringing under the cross has carried on.

Thank God they never killed any white (or other color) people!! Imagine how hard it would be to hold a war against us forever if they'd done any killing themselves! Not to mention the smallpox!! It's so weird that a disease that never killed anyone anywhere else would kill so many here. But "my" Christian ancestors had very little to do with any of this, of course. Much was done by the US military and government...which we've been told endlessly are not and never were Christian-based in any way, shape, or form. What may (or may not) have been done by those political and UnChristian leaders of the Catholic church will certainly have been answered for already...as those leaders have all met their Maker also.

Molon Labe
06-11-2008, 08:02 AM
Christians are human. Humans mess up all kinds of things. However, for every Fred Phelps out there, there are thousands of real Christians who live the lfe.

Along that line of thought, I heard today about a bike rally at a church in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The Guts Church is hosting a Harley rally and a band (forgot the name) to raise money for work in Haiti. The church has already raised 1/4 million, but need more to support the church, school, and hospital they've built. They currently feed something like 1000 kids every day, but really need to expand that program. They also are working on digging wells to provide clean water.

Strangely enough, this normal Christian occurance did NOT make national news...though it might if Phelps could be convinced to protest it.

Oh...I don't disagree. The problem I have is that there are alot more Joel Olsteen's with Mega churches and a bull horn than there are John Pipers. Basically the Christian leadership that the public sees is not clear Christian doctrine. It's the people in the trenches that get scant attention.

MrsSmith
06-11-2008, 08:22 AM
Oh...I don't disagree. The problem I have is that there are alot more Joel Olsteen's with Mega churches and a bull horn than there are John Pipers. Basically the Christian leadership that the public sees is not clear Christian doctrine. It's the people in the trenches that get scant attention.

Christian leaders that espouse clear doctrine are either dropped from the MSM completely, or very carefully and selectively quoted. Take Dobson for example. He isn't an actual minister or anything, of course, he is a psychologist, but of the millions of words he airs every year, only about 20 make it to national news...very carefully editted and quoted to make him appear offensive. Christian leaders like D. James Kennedy or Ken Hutcherson are treated much the same way. Compare the coverage on Hutcherson's stance on gays, and on his program for helping people adopt. Many people are determined to "hate" Christians regardless of any facts, and the MSM is definitely working to assist. There are many who've slipped from true doctrine, but those who have not are demonized by any means possible.

LogansPapa
06-11-2008, 10:29 AM
What may (or may not) have been done by those political and UnChristian leaders of the Catholic church will certainly have been answered for already...as those leaders have all met their Maker also.

So let me get this straight - the "non-regular Christians" are:

The Catholics,

Jehovah Witnesses,

and, maybe, The Mormons?

MrsSmith
06-11-2008, 05:47 PM
So let me get this straight - the "non-regular Christians" are:

The Catholics,

Jehovah Witnesses,

and, maybe, The Mormons?
Neither Jehovah's Witnesses nor Mormons follow standard Christian theology. There are some points of difference between Catholic theology and conservative Protestant, but they are generally very close...probably closer than some of the more liberal Protestant churches.

In general, the "regular" Christians, however, are all the people who have accepted a personal relationship with Christ, regardless of anything else. As a huge part of theology is resident in the relationship with the Holy Spirit, the points of disagreement are much diminished.

Gingersnap
06-11-2008, 08:54 PM
To clarify a bit on Mrs. Smith's excellent point: Jehovah's Witnesses do not believe the Trinity and they do believe that the battle between Christ and Satan has already happened (in 1914). The LDS also do not believe in an orthodox conception of the Trinity and have divergent views on salvation. The Catholics have a salvation perspective that is more dependent on works than most Protestant views although virtually all Protestants consider them Christian - just "funny".

The first two (as well as Oneness Pentecostals) are usually not considered Christian by traditional or orthodox Christians - they are Christian-Lite. The latter are Christians. Mostly. :p

LogansPapa
06-12-2008, 10:32 AM
Sounds like a separatism fest to me. My Godís better than your God. Jesus wept.

Nathan S.
06-12-2008, 12:10 PM
This thread took a while to catch up on. You know, I believe in the Lord of the Bible. I don't belong to any denomination, I haven't studied for years at a seminary. As for that, the Word is meant to be plain to those who read it.

It's wasn't written so only the elite teachers could disperse it's wisdom. So having said that, I feel I have a good understanding of His Word and no where do I find justification for the horrible things Fred has done. It's easy to lay blame on christianity for so many wrongs done in His name, but that doesn't make it so, that Christianity, or Christ himself is to blame.

At the same time I understand it seems like an "out" to "fall back" on something like this (we won't take credit for the bad, only the good) as I hear in other forums. But there it is all the same. The easiest way to see if something is advocated is to study the top advocate - Jesus, in this case.

Does the bible really seem so convoluted to most non-believers? Well. . . just as I wrote that I remember back when I was a very ticked-off angry atheist liberal. And yea, I guess it was to me.

MrsSmith
06-12-2008, 09:45 PM
Sounds like a separatism fest to me. My Godís better than your God. Jesus wept.

There is only one God. He did weep, for us, for our misery and pain. What an awesome God!

MrsSmith
06-12-2008, 09:49 PM
This thread took a while to catch up on. You know, I believe in the Lord of the Bible. I don't belong to any denomination, I haven't studied for years at a seminary. As for that, the Word is meant to be plain to those who read it.

It's wasn't written so only the elite teachers could disperse it's wisdom. So having said that, I feel I have a good understanding of His Word and no where do I find justification for the horrible things Fred has done. It's easy to lay blame on christianity for so many wrongs done in His name, but that doesn't make it so, that Christianity, or Christ himself is to blame.

At the same time I understand it seems like an "out" to "fall back" on something like this (we won't take credit for the bad, only the good) as I hear in other forums. But there it is all the same. The easiest way to see if something is advocated is to study the top advocate - Jesus, in this case.

Does the bible really seem so convoluted to most non-believers? Well. . . just as I wrote that I remember back when I was a very ticked-off angry atheist liberal. And yea, I guess it was to me.

I wonder how many actually read it...and how many fall back on the anti-Bible websites and books that cherry-pick verses to create the "proper" slant?

I know that I used to have a very hard time reading the New Testament. I'd always bought the "Jesus, meek and mild" description, with no variation, and that just isn't the Jesus speaking in the Gospel. That is a man full of power, He actually sounded so arrogant to my inner ear. One of the clearest signs of the Holy Spririt, to me, was my change of attitude.

AmPat
06-13-2008, 04:49 AM
Sounds like a separatism fest to me. My Godís better than your God. Jesus wept.

OR...............My understanding of My God is more accurate in MY OPINION than your understanding.:cool:

The Night Owl
06-13-2008, 08:50 AM
...He actually sounded so arrogant...

Something we can agree on.

Phillygirl
06-13-2008, 09:09 AM
To clarify a bit on Mrs. Smith's excellent point: Jehovah's Witnesses do not believe the Trinity and they do believe that the battle between Christ and Satan has already happened (in 1914). The LDS also do not believe in an orthodox conception of the Trinity and have divergent views on salvation. The Catholics have a salvation perspective that is more dependent on works than most Protestant views although virtually all Protestants consider them Christian - just "funny".

The first two (as well as Oneness Pentecostals) are usually not considered Christian by traditional or orthodox Christians - they are Christian-Lite. The latter are Christians. Mostly. :p

When I was in high school we were studying something related to the Catholic Church and the teacher asked who was Catholic and familiar with what was being talked about. When I raised my hand I was schocked to see only about 4 others out of 30 raise their hands. A girl in front of me who I had been friendly with looked at me with surprise and blurted out "I didn't know you were Catholic. It was odd. Up until then I had never thought about my being Catholic as being different at all. I also realized that just about all of my close friends were Catholic. I guess all those years of CCD sort of did it.

LogansPapa
06-13-2008, 02:36 PM
OR...............My understanding of My God is more accurate in MY OPINION than your understanding.:cool:

OR..........you're comfortable with living in a communal system and your supposed understanding just gives you comfort about being a communist?

Molon Labe
06-13-2008, 04:43 PM
Not to mention passing judgment is actually a human trait among a plethora of many. If a Christian is passing judgment wrongly it is not a theological issue it is a human one. Christianity has had such a positive impact on Western Civilization. We enjoy its fruits but fail to acknowledge its contributions. The influence of Christianity on Western Civilization is a topic near and dear to my heart. I wrote a paper on it for a college class during the fall semester last year and I hope to continue to research and write more upon it. Ignorance is not an excuse to rail against the one faith that has made the most positive impact on history.

Not to mention that most of these intellectuals that deny God or self congratulate themselves on their own wisdom are capable of enjoying the fruits of the Renaissance affects on our literature, philosophy, art, science and, religion because of Greek culture and Christian men. Someone is responsible for the the process of breaking out of the middle ages and it is not those that were Atheists. Some are too arrogant to look below and see the Giants shoulder's they stand on. They take it as...well...self evident that their unbelief in God is the most rational way.

MrsSmith
06-13-2008, 08:15 PM
Something we can agree on.

Did sound...past tense. Now we see through a glass darkly...but even now, with this limited understanding, His words are powerful and true, not arrogant.

MrsSmith
06-13-2008, 08:16 PM
OR..........you're comfortable with living in a communal system and your supposed understanding just gives you comfort about being a communist?

:D:D Great joke!! Communist... :D