Open Blogging

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51 Responses

  1. Babylon's Dread says:

    Openness is in the mind of some people the greatest virtue. Someone was selling that to me. Or rather they were reproving me because I am so “close minded.” You know, that drop the mic accusation that is supposed to cause us to roll over and show our belly like a recessive dog. Well, in my obtuse way I quipped, “The only thing that is open to everything is the sewer.” Of course, they grabbed the mic back, to no avail. Anyway, stop rolling over for all the nonsense spewed by people. Walk right into their accusing arguments and challenge their premise. We can do it without rancor, without anger, and without fear.

    Anyway… the open blogging seemed a good place to drop the mic.

    Dread Nothing

  2. Michael says:

    BD,

    Was there a particular topic you were being rebuked about?

  3. Babylon's Dread says:

    Michael,

    I’ll be general on this… almost always the rebuke comes over my resistance to moral choices, or rather, any sort of suggestion that human relationships and/or sexuality has moral implications.

  4. Babylon's Dread says:

    However,

    The specific rebuke concerned my Christianity. Upon re-reading I thought I should note that.

  5. Duane Arnold says:

    “God has created me to do Him some definite service. He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another. I have my mission. I may never know it in this life, but I shall be told it in the next. I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons.

    He has not created me for naught. I shall do good; I shall do His work. I shall be an angel of peace, a preacher of truth in my own place, while not intending it if I do but keep His commandments.

    Therefore, I will trust Him, whatever I am, I can never be thrown away. If I am in sickness, my sickness may serve Him, in perplexity, my perplexity may serve Him. If I am in sorrow, my sorrow may serve Him. He does nothing in vain. He knows what He is about. He may take away my friends. He may throw me among strangers. He may make me feel desolate, make my spirits sink, hide my future from me. Still, He knows what He is about.”

    ― John Henry Newman

  6. Em says:

    Somewhere in the past i remember a picture of BD… As i recall he is an imposing figure. It would take a brave person to rebuke him …. course today, we do have a lot of mindless people doing an awful lot of mindless rebuking…. or so it seems to me 😐

  7. Michael says:

    BD,

    I’m rethinking how I approach those subjects of sexuality and morality…it seems to me we’re sinking into an abyss of not just immorality,but insanity.

    My primary concern is with young people who are being confused unnecessarily over what their primary identities are with great psychological harm as the result.

    It seems to me that while the church is working toward the full manifestation of the kingdom of God, the world desires to fully embrace the chaos of the fall…

  8. Michael says:

    Duane,

    That’s exactly what I needed to read this morning…wow.

  9. Em says:

    Come to think of it, i wouldn’t want to rebuke Michael… God give us more BDs and Michaels…. please

  10. Babylon's Dread says:

    Michael,

    I’m all in … it isn’t about gotcha morality for me … it is about the divine image and glory. I applaud the project.

  11. Michael says:

    BD,

    One of my issues is this.
    How do we speak to heart of this issue (which to me is all about the imago dei and the restoration of all things) without all the political trappings that demand you also follow party lines and divert from what our mission is?

  12. Em says:

    BD’s 10:26 is worthy of thinking on… How does one hold the line and hold the ground with God’s holiness as the focus, it always seems to end in accusations of sanctimonious self righteousness … “After all, He is a forgiving God of love… my standard of morality is my business – between me and MY God”

  13. Babylon's Dread says:

    Well,

    No matter how it is addressed it will offend. We must be willing to offend and strive to be cogent and compelling if offensive. I have no value system that tells me not to offend. We do have some mandate to speak coherently and insightfully when offending. An offensive spirit is what betrays us, I think. Nevertheless, these issues are so visceral they will never go down easy. We must be un-offendable while being offensive.

    Anyway we have been intimidated into silence by left and right, by our own fundamentalists and the avant-garde …

  14. Michael says:

    Em,

    Part of the issue is that we lead with “God hates these things” instead of “God loves you and His ways are for your good”
    We care more about the rules then the people we see breaking them.
    The balance is difficult…

  15. Michael says:

    “Anyway we have been intimidated into silence by left and right, by our own fundamentalists and the avant-garde …”

    Yes.

  16. Em says:

    Intimidated is a stance, or lack of, to think on… Is it inaccurate to say that God is not nice? He is patient, merciful, gracious… But how does holiness align with nice?
    My definition of nice involves compromise (sometimes we humans should). Does God compromise? Did the Apostles ever compromise in the things of God?
    Just pondering the offense issue; what i think may be key to living our lives IN Christ… a little late for me, but Truth is always timely, isn’t it…..

  17. j2theperson says:

    Crazy stuff happening over in my neck of the woods. Our pastor just tendered his resignation. His last day is the end of August. My husband is the senior warden so suddenly he’s basically in charge of the church. Didn’t really see that coming. These changes are exciting but daunting.

  18. Kevin H says:

    j2,

    I hope and pray things work out for your church. I know you’ve been expressing your concerns here quite a bit lately about your pastor and it may be best that he is no longer the pastor. I pray that God helps your husband and your church and your family through the “daunting” part of this experience.

  19. Duane Arnold says:

    j2

    Hope that all of this works out to the good…

  20. Kevin H says:

    As for BD’s, Michael’s, and Em’s conversation, I do not think God calls us not to offend. Speaking of the Gospel itself will be an offense to many. At the same time, I don’t think He wants us to always offend. The tricky part is figuring out when it is best to offend and when it is not. Our ever increasingly divided and partisan culture makes it all the harder to not offend somebody when trying to speak to any issue or situation.

  21. Kevin H says:

    I have not read this book, but from having read some excerpts and being familiar with some of Fea’s other writings, I think there likely will be some good stuff in the book:

    https://thewayofimprovement.com/2018/07/20/some-thoughts-on-the-audience-of-believe-me-the-evangelical-road-to-donald-trump/

    But I post this not necessarily to promote the book, but to commend Fea’s goals and desires he expresses in this blog posting. We could use more people with this way of thinking and approach.

  22. Jean says:

    “How do we speak to heart of this issue”

    I would say that the New Covenant witness is not just speaking, but speaking and doing, salting and letting one’s light shine before others….

  23. Kevin H says:

    The use of “Touch not the Lord’s anointed” has been a common topic here over the years. Looks like we got a real-life situation where it came into play:

    https://babylonbee.com/news/pitcher-hits-tim-tebow-with-fastball-turns-to-pillar-of-salt/

    🙂 🙂 🙂

  24. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    I have a question about Fea’s use of “81% of white evangelicals voted for Trump.”
    Can this be accurate – actually 81% of white evangelicals voted for Trump? Or is the truth that 81% of evangelicals WHO VOTED, voted for Trump?
    Big difference and I think it is used often in a dishonest way to make a dishonest point.

  25. Kevin H says:

    MLD,

    Fea actually uses the words “WHO VOTED” in his blog posting. So there is nothing at all dishonest going on his post.

    You misquoted him by saying, “Fea’s use of “81% of white evangelicals voted for Trump.””

  26. Michael says:

    KevinH,

    I’m a fan of Fea’s work…looking forward to reading the book soon.
    That was a good piece you posted…

  27. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Kevin, read #3 – I don’t read that as “of those who voted, 81% voted for Trump”
    I think the point is if only 40% of registered voters actually vote, then the number of white evangelicals voting for Trump may actually be around 30%.
    However, no big deal.

  28. Xenia says:

    The 81% of white American evangelicals who voted for Donald Trump.
    The 19% of white American evangelicals (and non-white evangelicals) who did not vote for Donald Trump
    Anyone who wants to understand why 81% of American evangelicals voted for Donald Trump.

    This sounds like he is saying 81% of Evangelicals voted for Trump.

  29. j2theperson says:

    Thanks Kevin and Duane. We’re hopeful. Our church isn’t out of the woods, but in some respects this was the best case scenario. Our pastor resigned due to personal issues not fully related to the stuff that has been going on and he did so before there was a huge exodus over theological issues.

    And I’m relieved to find out that the Bishop has a long term supply priest lined up so the senior warden won’t have as much responsibility as last time we were without a rector when we got by on short term supply priests.

    Maybe we’re just temporarily staving off the inevitable, but I do feel like there’s hope and that God may not be finished with our church yet.

  30. Xenia says:

    Is is kind of a big deal, at least for me. If I thought 81% of all Evangelicals voted for Trump, then I am majorly disappointed with a much larger chunk of American Christianity than if only 30% of them voted for Trump. Gives me more hope.

    All the Evangelicals I know voted for Trump, with a very few abstainers. My husband and I wrote in the name of someone we thought was worthy.

    If he is going to write a book and try to sort this all out, he needs to be accurate.

  31. Xenia says:

    J2, I am relieved your pastor has resigned. I hope your bishop sends you a great replacement.

    My husband is one of the wardens at our parish, too.

  32. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    It is common they say 81% voted for Trump – it is to make white evangelicals look stupid. As I say, perhaps 60% of people eligible to vote actually register and of those, perhaps 40% actually get out and vote.
    So I am guessing closer to 30% of white evangelicals actually voted for Trump.

  33. Em says:

    J2, i think some crazy DO happen when one posts prayer requests over there with dusty. 😊

  34. j2theperson says:

    Even if 81% did vote for Trump, that wouldn’t inherently bother me. It was a choice between 2 bad options. Some of the responses to some of the things he’s done since taking office are troubling but simply voting for him doesn’t reflect one way or the other on someone in my opinion.

  35. Duane Arnold says:

    j2

    Your diocese is historically a bit more stable than the rest of TEC. I hope your interim will take you through the process. Your bishop has an interesting background (Gordon-Conwell) to be heading a historically Anglo-Catholic diocese. You husband will have real influence in the selection of a new priest. You will very much be in my prayers.

  36. Kevin H says:

    After re-reading Fea’s post, I can see how some read him as saying 81% of evangelicals voted for Trump due to his point #3 essentially using that wording. I didn’t read it as such since his first point uses the wording of those “who voted” and so I assumed his following point #3 was speaking of those in the first point. Again, of those “who voted”. But I can see how others read it differently.

    I just went and re-read a couple other recent articles of Fea’s that have been published in various sources where he draws from information from his book and addresses this topic. In those articles, he consistently refers to the 81% of evangelicals “who voted” for Trump. So I give him the benefit of the doubt that his point #3 in the blog posting I linked here is just an oversight or lack of clarity in writing.

  37. Em says:

    A hypothetical … One of the Herods, Pilate and Caiaphas are running for governor … would Jesus advise his followers to not exercise their right to vote as the three are all evil men ….. or to write in a vote for Peter?
    Or, as ambassadors in an alien land, do we have any obligation to our King to not participate in civic affairs here at all?
    Or…. ?
    I know the manager of my grocery store is stepping out on his wife, romancing a cashier – do i quit buying groceries there? Is it possible to live in the two kingdoms? Where does the line lay?
    When have i entered into the legalist’s world? Should i follow my conscience? Or the rule of when in doubt, don’t?
    Or .. ?
    Another question… Does carnal = evil?
    Or ..? 😨

  38. j2theperson says:

    Apparently the Bishop has promised a lot of support. We’ll see if that happens. I can only hope that now that we’ve done this once just a couple years ago that we’ll be able to do it again but better the second time around.

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

    “People with handicaps teach me that being is more important than doing, the heart is more important than the mind, and caring together is better than caring alone.”
    Henri Nouwen

  40. bob1 says:

    I was happy to see that the Church of England is ramping up its requirements for
    aspiring clergy, especially with regard to narcissism.

    An ounce of prevention…

  41. The New Victor says:

    Michael
    July 20, 2018 at 10:22 am
    I’m rethinking how I approach those subjects of sexuality and morality…it seems to me we’re sinking into an abyss of not just immorality,but insanity.

    My primary concern is with young people who are being confused unnecessarily over what their primary identities are with great psychological harm as the result.

    A buddy of mine in Canada has a daughter who at 12 suddenly came out as a male. Unlike the “typical” gender dysphoria in children, it manifested suddenly with no prior issues. His high conflict ex has used this as a wedge to keep D12 and the two younger boys despite the joint custody order. Unlike in the USA, there has to be a police clause to enforce the order. He’s going back to court in a week or so to get it written in. Ex says D(S?)12 doesn’t feel “safe” at dad’s… he merely tried to understand what was going on and no questions whatsoever are allowed. She’s depressed, suicide ideation… when dad tried to bring up to the psychiatrist the history of the last 7 years, that mom left dad for another guy whom she married, their house is high conflict with other man becoming an opioid addict, lots of yelling and conflict where D had previously indicated to dad was stressful, the psychiatrist brushed it aside. Not to mention that the mother ruined her r/s with a daughter from a previous marriage. “No, she’s definitely got gender dysphoria” and she’s already started on hormone blockers, a chest binder… I can’t help but think that it might be similar if that happened to me here in California. I saw the sudden changes in her in pics online and I kind of wondered what was going on until he told me. Of course she had plenty of access to trans-literature for children at their public school, which helped validate encourage the feelings.

    I feel for him (and his girl… boy). He’s in a corner just to accept it or lose his child and possibly the r/s with his boys, who were and are also confused by their sister.

  42. Michael says:

    Victor,

    That’s exactly what I’m talking about…we’re going to screw these kids up beyond hope…

  43. Steve Wright says:

    To defend evangelicals and not Trump, let me say any analysis of voting is worthless without looking at how those same evangelicals voted statistically the same way and in the same numbers for Mormon Romney and evangelical hating McCain both of whom Obama beat like a drum. People may think they can blame evangelicals for Trump but that is objectively false as CNN exit polls clearly show. Evangelicals don’t explain Hillary losing states Obama easily won.

    Romney and Mccain both HATE Trump and vocally express it, yet the evangelical vote was very similar.

    The question isn’t Trump. It’s why those evangelicals who believe in voting for President refuse to vote Democrat, no matter their level of support or distaste for the Republican nominee. Maybe the Democrat party needs to look in the mirror at what they really fight for, and what they just give lip service to for fundraising.

  44. Michael says:

    Unfortunately, I have to agree with Steve to a point.

    The political opposition to Trump (which I fervently and feverishly desire to join if actually viable) lacks leaders of even partial substance and lacks any coherent plans or policies that actually address an issue.

    Identity politics and obscene memes can only take you so far…

  45. Jim says:

    “Part of the issue is that we lead with “God hates these things” instead of “God loves you and His ways are for your good”
    We care more about the rules then the people we see breaking them.”

    Golden.

  46. Jim says:

    I really think Christians should not worry themselves with the moral decline of the world.

    1 Cor 5:

    12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? 13 God judges those outside.

    Just a thought…

  47. The New Victor says:

    1 Cor 5:

    That is why I never judged my ex’s gay friend, even if he said sometimes offensive things to me at the occasional dinner. He’s not a Christian. Still, I did get some flack from them in the beginning for not supporting gay marriage.

  48. Kevin H says:

    Without a doubt, the Democratic party is a significant reason why Trump got a large percentage of the evangelical vote. I believe Fea addresses this in his book by giving legitimate concerns evangelicals have with the Democratic party, specifically things that happened in the Obama presidency and would have been expected to happen under a Hillary presidency.

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