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65 Responses

  1. Babylon's Dread says:

    Methodists also lie 😉

  2. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    We need to go back to old language – what a bunch of pervs in the pulpit

  3. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    The perversion is not their sexual activity – it’s that they want to be excused of it.

  4. Dallas says:

    Link to the study referenced in the adult clergy abuse article.

    The numbers, at least to me, were surprising. Planning on doing some further reading on this later.

  5. Babylon's Dread says:

    Praying for infertile couples is routine in churches like mine. Some pastors offer simple petitions and others follow their theology toward proclaiming fertility as a remedy. Either way it is very very common to see couples conceive after receiving prayer. It is not scientific and would not meet anyone’s criterion for such. In scripture many women cry out to God and conceive. The aid of God in childbearing is a fairly most common testimony in the text.

  6. Babylon's Dread says:

    Lots of articles about misbehaving clergy this week,

  7. Josh the Baptist says:

    Olson made good sense on the bathroom issue.

    Of course, he’s full of hate or phobia or something I’m sure.

  8. London says:

    Where’s the links to people in the church doing the right thing?


  9. Michael says:

    Post some if you have them.
    If folks see a link of interest you can post it here or send it to me before I put up the article.

    I hate doing Linkathon with a passion…I’ll take all the help I can get.

    Unfortunately Tuesday at 11:00 AM is also the most popular time on the blog so we’ll keep doing it.

  10. Josh the Baptist says:

    What in the world is going in UMC? Wow.

  11. Steve Wright says:

    Jesus spoke often about avoiding hell. Making that a focus of evangelism is fine by me. Those who do, certainly do not simply preach “fire insurance” or argue that having received the Lord we don’t need to walk with Him.

    Maybe the problem is too little interaction with the elderly, the dying, the destitute, where eternity is much more at the forefront of their thoughts than somehow going forth and obeying all Jesus taught. Hard to talk about the glories of the kingdom in their midst in between the nursing staff changing their diapers.

    My first ministry was leading Sunday services in an elderly Alzheimer’s home. I did that for over five years. All I did was talk about heaven, the cross, forgiveness. When all is said and done my guess is it will be the most important ministry I ever held…in the Lord’s eyes. Which is all that matters.

    Of course, when someone on the internet, no matter how popular he was, starts his article mocking Bill Bright and the work for the Lord accomplished by Campus Crusade for multiple DECADES (and continuing)…well…that speaks volumes to me.

    I met and had a chance to speak with Bill Bright once. I more humble man I have never met since.

  12. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    I think preaching about hell is fine … as long as it is not preached at the believer.

  13. Babylon's Dread says:

    “Jesus spoke often about avoiding hell.”

    Apparently I need to reread…

    I would maintain that he virtually never made avoiding hell the basis of evangelism, so I gotta reread.

    Most of the judgement talk is aimed at covenant Israel and I am not sure how much of that was about hell. Most of that seems to have been about the impending destruction of Israel.

    I need a fresh reading

  14. Michael says:

    I don’t see how the article was “mocking” Bright.
    It simply pointed to a better and more accurate portrayal of the Gospel.

    “Evangelicalism is a religion of decisions and transactions. Jesus proclaims the arrival of the reign of God. There are decisions to be made, but reducing the Gospel to a decision to accept “God’s plan for my life” or giving the right answer to the question of how to go to heaven seems to have moved well past what Jesus was doing in his earthly ministry.
    The decisions most often presented to Jesus’ hearers were: (1) the decision to recognize the reality of the Kingdom of God, and (2) the decision to recognize Jesus as the Messiah who is bringing that Kingdom into the world.”

    I don’t understand what Bright’s character has to do with his theology.

  15. Dallas says:

    London, maybe it’s just a matter of perspective. Sure, many of the articles that get shared here are on negative subject matters such as abuses in the church. On the other hand there are generally at least a few that in themselves are good works that are being done by fellow believers (the church). They might be mucking around in the dark corners of the church, but surely there are those that are being ministered to by the truth being brought to light.

    There are many ugly things that Michael has helped bring to light since I have frequented this site, which is why I have no problem recognizing him as one in the church who is doing the right thing.

  16. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Michael – which article?

  17. Michael says:


    “Jesus didn’t ask for decisions, He made proclamations…”

  18. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    I read about half and then read the comments – I must not have gotten down to the part Steve was speaking of.
    I’m going back in.

  19. Judy says:

    I am more and more convinced as I read through these things that people have lost or are losing their minds at a very fast clip. Black is white, white is black, and no one is wrong. Everyone is right. And willing to fight.

    It’s really very sad.

  20. Steve Wright says:

    I would maintain that he virtually never made avoiding hell the basis of evangelism, so I gotta reread.
    I think even using the term “evangelism” is pretty loaded when it comes to the teaching ministry of Jesus Christ.

    If we define the gospel that Christians preach, believe and by which they are saved as per the opening verses of 1 Corinthians 15 – and I think most of us do (and if not, you can take it up with Paul..or maybe better, The Holy Spirit) then it is awful hard to find that in the teaching ministry of Jesus Christ when He walked the earth in the years before the cross.

    Jesus was born under the Law, lived and obeyed under the Law, died under the Law – and yes, taught under the Law.

    I just was in the passage where He heals the leper and tells the leper to go show himself to the priest (per the Law). He did not come to destroy the Law but to fulfill and He does not even mention His cross (much less the purpose of the cross) until well into the ministry when those core disciples are finally able to receive it, even a little (and we know they did not fully receive until after He rose)

    Anyway, Jesus said don’t fear people on earth who can kill you but fear the One who after death can send you to hell. If that ain’t some form of evangelism, I guess I don’t know what qualifies.

  21. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    I agree with Judy … unless she is talking about me.

  22. Steve Wright says:

    When Jesus said, “I have a baptism to be baptized with.” we all recognize He was not speaking about a pending water baptism.

    Why do we not see likewise that if you look at the first chapter in Mark, and he is preaching “the gospel” (which simply means good news and has different connotations in context) He is not going around saying that He has died and risen for the sins of the world there in Mark One, nor is He predicting He will do so. However, when He does rise and tells His disciples to go into all the world and preach the gospel, that THERE He is referencing His cross and victory over the grave (as Paul notes).

    Words like gospel, kingdom, baptism – have different connotations in Scripture.

    Kingdom of God for example can speak of any one of FOUR different realms depending on the context of the passage and recognizing that is part of rightly dividing the word of truth.

  23. ( |o )====::: says:

    “Where’s the links to people in the church doing the right thing?


    Methinks they’re done in secret (with no blog links),
    to please The Heavenly Father,
    Who sees in secret,
    and rewards in secret.

    …but, shhhh, ‘cuz it’s a secret! 😉

  24. Steve Wright says:

    A final point before I need to split. Understanding Jesus as teaching under the Law makes sense of many of His remarks, such as telling the disciples to obey the scribes that sit in Moses’ seat, when He asked other people “What did Moses say” when asked a doctrinal question. Having the leper fulfill the law in going to the priest, and especially his teaching on divorce which did not contradict Paul (nor Paul, Jesus) but was an answer in the context of the debate about divorce in the Law. Paul supplements the divorce teaching in light of the New Covenant.

    However, I am NOT saying Jesus was simply some final authority on the Law of Moses. He also taught not just to clarify the generations of error that had arisen due to interpretations and oral traditions (for example, over the keeping of the Sabbath) but taught in a preparatory way for what was about to be ushered in. He spoke about the Church that He “will build” (future tense when spoken) – and of course prepared those disciples of His choosing for the work they would one day be called upon to do.

    Lest anyone conclude I am arguing Jesus was just a glorified Old Testament scholar when it comes to His teaching and that He really had nothing to say to us who are not under the Law today. Far from it. Not my point at all, but we must recognize the context of the Law in not just the life, not just the ministry, but the teachings of Jesus on earth pre-cross.

  25. London says:


  26. Em again says:

    so many feel what Judy expressed – i listened to Attorney General Loretta Lynch yesterday throw down the gauntlet in front of N. Carolina and IMV it was disturbing – just how much does the nation have to give to the gender challenged? our own dignity? she was condemning those who weren’t sensitive to what “these people must cope with everyday” – exactly what does it mean to be “sensitive?” if you put on a dress, go into the ladies’ room, go into a stall and relieve yourself, wash your hands and walk out – there’s no problem – might be a little more difficult for the well developed curvy lady to pull off the same thing in the men’s room, but in that case, just use the ladies’ room… forcing this issue – making a cause out of this – is way beyond common sense – i smell a rat, an insane one

    the NPD link is a great check-list IMHO

    JW’s and Mormons NEED to see Jesus as a separate being sent by God, why is that? not long ago i asked a door knocking JW, if we agreed that Satan’s challenge was to God when he said that he would be like the most high God? He said, “absolutely!” i then asked him to set the Bible aside and ask himself, if the challenge was made to God, why would God send another being to answer that challenge? i don’t know why, but the two men just melted, almost literally as they backed away and left. It might be because they are thoroughly schooled in comebacks and they hadn’t come to that question before… it probably wasn’t because of my logic/common sense…

  27. Josh the Baptist says:

    Jesus often spoke about the Kingdom, but the original hearers had some concept of what He was talking about. They were expecting The Kingdom.

    However, when He spoke spoke to the Samaritan woman in John 4, He spoke about living water.

  28. ( |o )====::: says:

    I tried 😉

  29. London says:

    I was hoping for something a little more current 🙂

  30. ( |o )====::: says:

    It’s pure inspiration from a current generation of what can and must be done.
    By the way, Bernie is part of that march.

  31. Jean says:

    I think Preston Sprinkle gets the LGBT in the Church issue just right:

    I wish someone in the UMC had this kind of wisdom, but I haven’t seen it from the leadership of the Bishops.

  32. EricL says:

    Try the article on “Why God Has Dirty Hands”on God drawing near to us, or the one about “Dreaming of an Ideal Mission Trip”, which is a quirky idea of a sort-of reversed short-term missions. Maybe we had too many negative stories this week, but sometimes that’s all that we can find in the news. 🙁

  33. Michael says:

    I love the way Sprinkle does theology even when I don’t agree with him.

  34. j2theperson says:

    ***Either way it is very very common to see couples conceive after receiving prayer. It is not scientific and would not meet anyone’s criterion for such.***

    I bet it’s just because you pretty much only ever hear back from the couples who do get pregnant. The ones who don’t conceive after being prayed over don’t mention anything to you and it’s not like they’re necessarily being actively followed up with in most situations. I’ve been prayed over multiple times and have had multiple people praying for me regularly for coming up on two years, so forgive me for being more than a little dubious that prayer accomplishes anything in this regard. And, if it does for other people, then that just leaves me feeling extra super abandoned by God, whereas, if prayer does nothing for this then at least I’m not being overlooked and abandoned.

  35. j2theperson says:

    Re: The sanctified testosterone link…

    I pretty much just tune out now whenever I hear men complaining about how the church has failed men. It’s reminds me of all the articles out there about how men are being left behind in the new American economy. Really it just comes across to me as whiny, lazy men not accepting that things are not as they would like it and learning to live with reality as it exists instead of as they wish it were. Churches shouldn’t have to do jack crap to somehow recover this mythical manhood that they think existed at one time. Men should just suck it up and go to church regularly, pray at least once in a while, and try to treat their wife, children, and the people they come in contact with decently. It’s not rocket science. If you don’t like the church you’re currently attending, walk 100 yards down the road and try a different one. Just stop whining about it and acting like it’s somehow so extra hard for men to be good Christians in this day and age. Because, odds are it is no more difficult than it ever has been, nor is it uniquely more difficult for men than it is for women.

  36. Em again says:

    “Men should just suck it up and go to church regularly, pray at least once in a while, and try to treat their wife, children, and the people they come in contact with decently” one of the best definitions of a man that i’ve heard in a long time

    hmmm… i think what both men and women out there are feeling these days is confusion … i feel so sorry for the kids today coming into adulthood

    j2, i could give some platitudinous responses to your #35, but you and God will work it out, many’s the time i told God that He wasn’t very good at His job … the walk isn’t always easy, i don’t think
    for the record, He was and is very good at His job

  37. I say a hearty amen to J2’s #36 – men today, especially in the church are such sissies it is ridiculous. J2 has hit the nail on the head – mean feel entitled to their ‘feelings’ when really they need to do what men have always done – suck it up.

    Now that I think about it, perhaps Target has done a great thing for our sissie society – they have given men a place to go sit down and pee.

  38. j2theperson says:

    ***perhaps Target has done a great thing for our sissie society – they have given men a place to go sit down and pee.***

    Hah hah. I totally thought about making a similar joke in my post but then decided against it. 🙂

  39. Josh the Baptist says:

    Yeah – Another amen to J2’s #36. That should be the only thing said at every Biblical Manhood Conference.

  40. Disillusioned says:

    Agree w you about the NPD article. An important read and eye-opening!

  41. Josh the Baptist says:

    About the NPD article – I think we need to stop diagnosing people by blogs. It’s silly. We aren’t capable, and it makes us look paranoid.

    Instead of playing amateur shrink, we could actually just talk about the issues we have with certain leaders or type of leadership, and seek to avoid those issues.

  42. Josh the Baptist says:

    Read the comments on that article. Notice that everyone is sure their pastor is NPD!


  43. j2theperson says:

    ***j2, i could give some platitudinous responses to your #35, but you and God will work it out, many’s the time i told God that He wasn’t very good at His job … the walk isn’t always easy, i don’t think for the record, He was and is very good at His job***

    I appreciate the absence of platitudes. That’s the thing that’s really getting to me now. It’s been a long enough time that people have started telling me ridiculous horrible things–like, maybe God is preventing us from having another child because He knows if I did I would die in childbirth or something, or that it’s idolatrous for me to want another child. Both of those are ridiculous, pathetically horrible and uneducated things to say, but I just kind of have to suck it up and not get too mean or snarky because it’s well-meaning people who are close to me saying these ridiculous things.

    It’s, honestly, more comforting to believe that God does not specifically give anyone children because if that’s true it means that he specifically is placing a bunch of children in horrible, abusive situations, and it would be way to painful to think that He willing to put children with abusers but somehow he thinks that I’m not a good enough parent to warrant another child. It’s a lot easier to deal with believing that God has put a reproductive process in place and it either works or it doesn’t but He’s not overseeing the specifics.

    Oh, and the guy in the original article sounds like a class A jerkoff.

  44. j2theperson says:

    ***Read the comments on that article. Notice that everyone is sure their pastor is NPD!


    Come on, Josh. It’s a well-known fact that if you don’t like a person in a position of authority the person in authority must have NPD.

  45. Josh the Baptist says:

    Only since Tony Jones and his wife had a public blowup on the internet. I’m not sure I had heard of NPD before then.

    Now, I’m an expert.

  46. j2theperson says:

    Labelling people as having NPD seems like the latest fad. I mean, isn’t it possible that all these people being diagnosed over the internet with NPD are just jerks with no underlying mental health problem to excuse it, or maybe the people doing the labelling and the people being labelled simply don’t get along.

  47. Josh the Baptist says:


  48. Mr Jesperson says:

    Personality disorders are real. I know real people who are not pastors who have been diagnosed. I have seen it up close and personal. I have no problem believing that many pastors also have personality disorders. One pastor I had was clearly bi-polar. He was so charismatic when he was on the up cycle. His personality appeared to completely change when he was crashing. It was like having two completely different men pastoring. One time while crashing he gave a sermon called “Can a Christian be Saved.” The end of that was that he was not sure what the true answer was. Worse sermon I ever heard. Worst teacher too. He would preach completely different when he was running on adrenaline in the manic phase.

  49. Josh the Baptist says:

    Mr J, Did a doctor diagnose and treat him, or do you just assume because you think you know something about personality disorders?

  50. Josh the Baptist says:

    Let me go ahead and follow this up –

    Mr J – We believe that personality disorders are real. I do not believe that you can diagnose such a thing without some serious time in school.

  51. WenatcheeTheHatchet says:

    I have moments where I suspect that NPD is the pop psychology Christian diagnostic fad today that recovered memories was decades ago. There are plenty of ways to constructively criticize a church leader without resorting to a pop psychology diagnosis. If someone’s genuinely trained to diagnose that’s another matter, per Josh the Baptist’s comment.

  52. Josh the Baptist says:

    Bingo WtH – You could just say: That guy is a jerk, controlling, a liar…you could actually talk about the issue you are having rather that try to label him the new boogeyman.

  53. Alan says:

    I find it pathetic that R Moore just now figured out that the GOP doesn’t represent Christians. But somehow this clown (Moore) supported Romney, McCain and Bush. What a joke.

  54. Michael says:


    I’m not a Republican…not even close.
    But, I like Moore a lot…his book is excellent.

  55. Em again says:

    #56 – i became aware of this compassionate outreach some years back – it does break one’s heart – for many reasons – and any honest woman would say, “that could have been me, but for the mercy of God” … over on the freedom thread i have watched Pastor Steve’s comments distorted and disparaged to a degree that ought to embarrass an honest person … FWIW – MLD is focused on going to the strip club doesn’t cause one to lose their salvation … Pastor Steve, on the other hand, would be there doing the work in the manner of what JoelG linked … just the way it looks from here after reading the other thread …

  56. Josh the Baptist says:

    Alan – Where is the joke? Are you saying Russell should just support Trump even if his conscious dictates otherwise?

  57. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Em, polish those reading glasses 🙂
    I have not focused on going to strip clubs – I have not focused on sin at all. For the sake of that article, I could not care less about sin.
    My focus has been on going out and serving your neighbor – which is exactly what these ladies have been doing.

    Now to your comment – you are correct, if some one came to me and said I am a Christian but I have this thing in me to go to strip clubs, am I going to lose my salvation? My unequivocal answer is no you will not lose your salvation for going to a strip club. So while we are on the topic, going to a strip club is sin for 2 reasons (1) because it manifests itself in you in lust – which is sin and (2) because your lust encourages women to dehumanize themselves to work in the industry to satisfy your lust.

    So, repent, stop going, stop sinning and go your way … in Jesus power and name.

  58. JoelG says:

    Confession: I was that Christian several years ago. And the fact that I knew what I was doing drove me further from God from fear of Him. To this day I fear sinning and falling outside of God’s grace. The truth is that God’s grace in Jesus Christ is boundless. And instead of running away, we are free to repent and live out our lives serving our neighbors knowing we are securely hidden in our Savior Jesus, just as MLD is teaching.

  59. Em again says:

    #59-see, MLD, you can make good, solid Christian sense, too – when you focus 🙂

    it sure looks like keeping our focus, our balance requires concentration – and good teachers, may our Lord enlighten and convict the scorekeepers and the guilt trippers

    what, perhaps, we should fear is not our sins, but our hesitancy to own them, confess them to God and receive His cleansing … “we” because it’s me, too

  60. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    em – I have not had the need to focus – I have said the same thing from top to bottom on that thread – it flows naturally out of me – as I am free in Christ.

    But I do wonder why you focus so much of the christian life as avoiding sin? My focus is in doing good for the neighbor – I let God worry about my sin.

  61. JoelG says:

    “what, perhaps, we should fear is not our sins, but our hesitancy to own them, confess them to God and receive His cleansing … “we” because it’s me, too”

    Amen. Not only to own them, but to own the fact that we ARE sinners. It’s what we do, day in and day out, countless times. This is why the Gospel of Jesus is so good and why we are truly free to live out His Kingdom despite our sinfulness, which we hate.

  62. Em again says:

    #62 – “focus so much of the christian life as avoiding sin?” MLD – i see you are very focused to the point of having tunnel vision 🙂 you won’t find me anywhere, ever on Michael’s comments advocating for an inward focused walk (a Christian life that is BASED on “avoiding” sin is one focused on self)

    for the record, my input to anyone who is born again (if you wish, substitute your own definition of a follower of Christ) would be concentrate, learn all you can of Christ – most of it will come from the Book, but a good teacher of same helps … develop the mind of Christ (we miss so much because we do so poorly in this) – it isn’t done by closing your eyes and holding your breath – Matt 11:28-30

    i love to think of Michael’s hero, J.I. Packer, as a perfect example of what i’m talking about … perfect example and yet … not perfect in this life; none of us are … what a privileged position we have in Christ and how we waste it … speaking of myself

    should you do good works? you WILL do good works, like fruit from the Vine you’re grafted into, if you make Christ your most important Person

    can you manufacture good work? sure anybody, redeemed or otherwise, can do that, but they won’t stand the fire in the end … we way underestimate, maybe cannot even grasp, what a Holy God He is

  63. Em again says:

    #63- amen, JoelG, amen to your elaboration

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