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  1. Kevin H says:

    Only have a couple minutes to stop by so I haven’t had a chance to read hardly any of the links yet. But let me just say, I hate the Yankees but I love Mariano Rivera.

  2. Rob Murphy says:

    on the repugnance of bloodshed, the critique of Schaeffer’s critique of Gorman’s work . . . the early Christian opposition to capital punishment and military participation – it would seem a cursory review of history would show that of course early Christians were opposed to capital punishment and military participation. The early collision between Christianity and the Roman Empire resulted in Christians being the ones capitally punished and used as ‘cannon fodder’ (yeah, I know there weren’t cannons), so yeah, I get the opposition, just like I oppose stuff today that wouldn’t hurt me or my family.

    Paul used his status as a citizen and the rights that came with it to advance the Gospel, why wouldn’t early Christians – rendering unto Caesar – also use military service to better their circumstance and also have opportunity to ‘further the Gospel’. Or does God not want soldiers to be saved?

    Seems the opening criticism isn’t well thought out, seems like many, many writers want to be ‘unencumbered’ from the rashly anti choice, war on women “Pro Life” (which it isn’t really, obviously, because ‘death penalty’) folks who are cluttering up the church these days.

    The world is becoming a place for tall, well aged, intellectually agreeable, fully ambulatory fetuses only. Good luck staying in that niche!

  3. Rob Murphy says:

    *”would” not ‘wouldn’t’, end of first paragraph. I had to enact an action that would lead to the extraction of my contraction, lest it become a distraction or lost in abstraction.

  4. Steve Wright says:

    I read the “How pastors get rich” thinking it was going to give me some tips. 🙂

    Just kidding…just kidding…

    But in all seriousness to that article. One thing I found strange is that the counter-strategy was always “don’t give” – and I did not see anywhere the suggestion the person flee that sort of church with that sort of pastoral leadership.

    The article concludes “I believe many church goers would be shocked if they could comprehend the real attitude their pastor has towards them. From my experience with both the cults and these money focused churches, it is my impression that instead of being looked upon with love, these pastors see their congregation as farm animals to be milked.”

    Well, if that is true, why on earth would there even be the latent suggestion one continues to stay at such a place as long as you close your wallet. It makes me wonder if the author understands the reason someone would go to church in the first place.

  5. Muff Potter says:

    Those who are gratified by bloody violence on the silver screen have never seen (up close & personal) what an 88 mm mortar round will do to an old toothless mama-san trying to lead a water buffalo to safety.

  6. Nonnie says:

    I like Janet Medford’s article.

  7. Steve Wright says:

    RE: Church vs. government and social welfare needs of the country.

    Benjamin Corey is onto something that would be a worthy discussion with all our different political ideologies adding to that discussion. From his point of view, he misses some very crucial issues – and no doubt I am blind to some issues that some of you might otherwise share.

    The biggest blind spot to the argument in that article is that whether or not there is a government shutdown happening, we still have to pay our taxes. ALL our taxes, and at the incredibly high rates of today.

    I know it is somewhat of a chicken and egg argument, but at least acknowledge the present tax burden when you criticize Christians for their giving amounts today.

    As an aside, while I am no prophet, I imagine there will come a day when this nation’s debt load finally does bring economic ruin – not due to any partisan political party battles, but the basic laws of economics. That definitely will be a day when the church can shine the brightest. Whether she will or not is anyone’s guess. We’ve already had some “what-if” scenarios at our place if true calamity hits and there literally is just no money coming from government to all the people who depend on it now.

  8. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    For some reason the Church gets all icky about sex or nudity but is okay with violence. We forget that we serve a God that hates violence, even David couldn’t build the temple because of the blood he shed. Even violence that would be considered brave such as previously mentioned Private Ryan can have a damaging and numbing effect on our brains

  9. It’s an odd thing about war movies and the beginning of Private Ryan is still too bloody for me.

    To this day, I have never watched a single Vietnam centered war movie … too personal. I have no problem with old WWII movies.

  10. Steve Wright says:

    My Dad is the same way, MLD

  11. Good links this week! I read a bunch of em.

    How Pastors get Rich is interesting, and a lot of truth there. I would point out to Steve, that the author makes sure to say that most pastors are working hard and not making much. I appreciate the disclaimer.

    I always feel like I need someone to do a commentary on Wenatchee’s posts before I understand fully what he is talking about 🙂

    I liked the Olsen article, and appreciate you linking to him so often. Funny, in my world Olsen IS a liberal theologian.

    Chuck Jr. has handled himself extremely well during this time. That says a lot about him, and a lot about the man who raised him.

    Medford did a fine refutation, but honestly, it didn’t take much. That TGC article was silly.

  12. Dude says:

    The church isnt dying
    Ed Steltzer is mostly on the money with this one

    Bob Dylan
    Started listening to him in 1968 when I was 9 yrs old and he remains on of my favorites.

  13. Jim says:

    TGC is shameless.

    I used to argue with liberals over “pro life hypocrisy”, but under our current justice system, I think I’ve changed my mind.

    Dylan’s a brilliant poet. I found the “writer of pop sings” designation funny.

  14. Rob Murphy says:

    on the unconditional love for the LGBT . . . comparing their ‘disenfranchisement’ to the sinners and tax collectors of Jesus’ time is a very difficult stretch. There is not a more empowered segment of society than the LGBT community in our country today.
    The reality is that our culture is not demanding tolerance, but mandating an applauding endorsement. There is nowhere in media that the LGBT community is not commended, lauded, preferred, promoted, celebrated, protected, mythologized, idolized, idealized.
    To equate labeling their behavior as ‘sin’ being equated to being outcasts – cast out from what, exactly? Because they do not enjoy the same preferred, promoted, celebrated status for an hour long service at a church they are not mandated to attend? That’s being outcast?
    The author even states with clarity that Jesus said “Go and sin no more” and He is/was perfect in love- but we can’t even read 1 Cor. 6 anymore without it being called ‘hate speech’.
    Puzzling that the author can be sure of Jesus’ clarity in one part of the Scripture but the Same Bible isn’t as clear in Romans (or 1 Cor., or Galatians, etc)

  15. Steve Wright says:

    Rob, maybe next time before the next article on “outcasts” is written they can join me on a trip to India and go visit the leper colony where my Christian brother has provided houses, a water well, shoes and clothing, child education to this particular group of people.

    We could then go to the slums and meet with those of the untouchable castes and see how they live…

    To get a perspective of what a true outcast in society looks like.

  16. Gary says:

    I thoroughly enjoyed Chuck jr’s remembrance of his papa. I’m gonna listen again.

    Hey everybody- Phil 4:5 KJV

  17. Me too, Gary. It was sweet.

  18. brian says:

    “Chuck Jr. remembers his dad” Great reflection, another side, if I ever I mean ever.

  19. Gary says:

    Now is a good time for ever.

  20. Nonnie says:

    I just saw the Christmas music article. It’s amazing how people want to take time off work for the Christmas holidays, but are opposed to Christmas. It’s crazy to have the schools have Christmas choirs, and assemblies but not be able to sing about what Christmas is all about. But then again, we know it is not a battle of flesh and blood but of powers and principalities.

    As secular as England has become, I am thankful that Christmas carols are still very much ingrained into the holiday traditions and we can sing them without anyone complaining….so far.

  21. Gary says:

    brian- You know Chuck jr and his dad had a falling out over theology. That gives some perspective to his tribute. Some argue that Chuck jr should’ve been disfellowshipped.

  22. Muff Potter says:

    Nonnie wrote @ # 21:

    As secular as England has become, I am thankful that Christmas carols are still very much ingrained into the holiday traditions and we can sing them without anyone complaining….so far.

    We Yanks are an odd lot Nonnie. Did you know that until 1681 the New England Puritan theocracy had laws on the books prohibiting any kind of Christmas celebration? They felt it was too paganish and too close to Romish Popery at the time.

  23. PP Vet says:

    An awesome set of links.

    PhxPr bashers needs to understand that even though what happens here may seem harsh and even unChristian at times, there are often, buried within these threads, antidotes and answers to the cultishness, hero worship, and other plagues that bind the church.

  24. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    as far as christmas goes, I thinks it funny when Christians get all ruffled up at the phrase “Happy holidays” as if they suffered some immense persecution

  25. brian says:

    Gary yes I did realize that. It made what Chuck Smith Jr said much more poignant and honoring. I wish I could have reflected the same way in public but I got this thing stuck in my head because of some bad experiences I cant grieve, which is stupid of course I can. I took several experiences and broad brushed an entire group of people with them and I dont know how to back peddle and stop doing it. Its like a knee jerk reaction or a tape in my head that I just respond that way. I need to learn to let go and forgive and stop being such a butt.

  26. brian says:

    I found some of this sermon / Homily a bit frustrating but the end was really touching. It is Rachel Held Evans giving the Homily at an Anglican Church.

    http://rachelheldevans.com/blog/make-it-work-homily-luke-17

  27. Gary says:

    I’m not faulting you brian. No way. I just wanted to add some perspective. I wouldn’t want people to think Chuck jr was just a yesman.

  28. Nonnie says:

    Chuck Jr.’s theology and his love and respect for his father is 2 different subjects.
    I think it is a beautiful picture of what the church should be. We can disagree on form and method for church and worship of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour, but still love and commend one another.

  29. brian says:

    No Gary I was talking to myself, every time grief is discussed I get into this funk and go into tape mode that says I cant grieve, all Christians say I cant and will get mad and that is just not true. I am just trying to find someway to stop repeating the same rhetoric in my own head. I liked what you said. Chuck Jr. is a good man he loved his father flaws and all.

  30. Gary says:

    I like Chuck jr so much cuz he lived in someone’s shadow all his life and it didn’t crush him. He isn’t naturally outgoing like his dad. He’s more introspective. I admire that type of person being able to get up in front of so many judges -er- I mean people.
    When your tape player wears out get a new cd player. It’s a whole new world.

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