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54 Responses

  1. jtk says:

    i’m trying to check any political bias here…
    but here’s my question:
    “which will be harder: my liberal friends accepting that Trump won the election in 2016
    or
    my conservative friends accepting Biden won the election now/post January 20th?”

    It seems pretty fair to me, it seems to be a good litmus test of whether I’m willing to treat “the other side” the way I want to be treated.

    It went disappointingly poor when I asked one side of the aisle today. I’m asking the other side tomorrow.

  2. As Christians, if our definitions of ourselves and others are mainly political, we are in a world of hurt. I’m hoping many bridges will be built in the days to come.

  3. Jean says:

    jtk,

    I don’t speak for anyone but myself, but I and every liberal I know (and on several issues I am a liberal myself), accepts that Trump won the election. We lament his winning. We were surprised he won. We did not like the Wikileaks disclosures or the last minute Comey announcement of an investigation. But we never denied that the voters elected Trump.

    Everyone I know acknowledged that Clinton was a flawed candidate and made a lot of unforced errors; we never made excuses for her having an email server in a private residence, for example.

    But, to be clear, neither I nor any Democrat I know of, ever argued that the vote was fraudulently rendered or counted. Trump got more votes.

    So the comparison of Clinton 2016 and Trump 2020 is really an apples to oranges comparison. Trump has propagated lies on everything from dumps of fraudulent ballets, to dead voters, to fraudulent voting machines. He denies that he’s not as popular as he thinks he is.

    And less anyone is not convinced, Clinton never incited a violent insurrection, which resulted in the loss of life, or ask various State and Federal legislatures and the Vice President to overturn the election.

  4. jtk says:

    Jean,
    Thanks for your honesty.

    I’m finding MY liberal friends, some of whom are believers and some who aren’t, had (and are having) a difficult time acknowledging what you acknowledge.

    I’ve yet to ask my close GOP friends, but from what I’m hearing, it’s quite difficult for them.

    Michael Brown, whom I’ve not been a follower, has been addressing this quite effectively.

    I know it’s apple and oranges, but I’ve had a problem with both sides not acknowledging facts that were inconvenient for their side all of 2020, at least.

    I was/am thoroughly sickened and upset by what at the Capitol.

    Thanks for the answers.

  5. Em says:

    Bottom line is that our leadership – nations – is according to God’s will, no matter how they got there….

    “Be still my soul
    The Lord is on your side…….”

  6. Jean says:

    jtk,

    Thank you for your comments and sharing your POV.

  7. Michael says:

    jtk,

    I believed Trump would win in 2016, so that was easy.
    What I couldn’t believe are the myths that grew around him.
    He had a strong record of being a godless narcissist and became a Christian darling.
    Many of my friends and family believe this election was “stolen”…facts be damned.

  8. Michael says:

    It was a huge mistake for the corporate world to basically eliminate Parler and for Facebook and Twitter to ban Trump.
    It’s a terrible precedent and simply convinces deceived people that “they” are truly out to silence them.

  9. Michael says:

    History will show that this country collapsed because it no longer had any agreed upon sources of truth.

  10. Jean says:

    Michael,

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/christian-evangelist-franklin-graham-slams-republicans-for-taking-30-pieces-of-silver-from-nancy-pelosi-in-trump-impeachment-betrayal/ar-BB1cO8aG?ocid=Peregrine

    I don’t deny Evangelist Graham his right to free speech, but I think his latest message is exactly what you and Duane have warned against: Civil religion or Christian nationalism.

    Why would a Christian evangelist try to shame elected political figures for carrying out their political responsibilities according to conscience? What authority has God given to an evangelist which would give him the God’s approval to enter the impeachment debate?

    Also, is voting to impeach a president analogous to the betrayal of Jesus by Judas?

  11. Jean says:

    By associating the Republicans who voted to impeach Trump with Judas, Graham is strongly implying that they sinned against God by voting to impeach Trump.

  12. Michael says:

    Jean,

    I have been fighting Franklin Graham for almost twenty years.
    I can’t stand the sight of him for reasons unrelated to politics.
    He is a representative of a huge number of people who practice the American civil religion…let him speak.
    I pay as much attention to him as I do the noise coming from a public restroom and count it as having equal value.

  13. Michael says:

    This year I want to spend twice as much time speaking about what the true church is and what the true church does then I do railing against these false expressions of faith.

  14. pstrmike says:

    “What authority has God given to an evangelist which would give him the God’s approval to enter the impeachment debate?”

    We both know the answer to that question. As a private citizen, the Constitution does give him that right. In my mind, Franklin does not speak for God, and like Michael, I consider him irrelevant. Although I will tell you that I had such mixed emotions when our son took his family to see him, and then my five year old granddaughter responded to his invitation. Of all people to lead her to Christ……. but I was grateful , and acknowledged that God has a sense of humor.

  15. Jean says:

    pstrmike,

    I’m very happy for your granddaughter. May her life be filled with faith!

    Michael,

    “This year I want to spend twice as much time speaking about what the true church is and what the true church does then I do railing against these false expressions of faith.”

    That’s a great idea. I will endeavor to support that focus.

  16. pstrmike says:

    faith and wonder is my prayer for her. . .

  17. Xenia says:

    This year I want to spend twice as much time speaking about what the true church is and what the true church does then I do railing against these false expressions of faith.<<<<

    This is good news! I'll try and do likewise.

  18. pstrmike says:

    “! I’ll try and do likewise.”

    I guess we’ll be hearing more about Orthodoxy! I appreciate Xenia’s input here, and she was helpful to me in loaning me resources during my dissertation. Thank you for your help, Xenia!

    I’ll try and weigh in more on Spiritual Formation.

  19. Michael says:

    My primary identity is that of a Christian.
    That is what I mainly want to talk about.
    There will be times when we have to address social or political issues, but my hope is to do so from a historic Christian perspective.
    God willing, Trump will be gone in a few days…Biden will present a different set of quandaries.
    If we are focused on Christ we will make a difference…and if we make no difference, we can be faithful.
    Orthodoxy and spiritual formation are wonderful topics to explore…

  20. Nathan Priddis says:

    JTK. In both 2016 and 2000 there was a smattering of individuals complaining about the Electoral College. If brand X won a majority of the popular vote, then the thought process went..its not fair that brand Y is inaugurated. I never heard any claims of Bush/Trump not being President. It was more a matter of permanent anger, even to the point of one’s identity could be a matter of hating Bush/Trump.

  21. Jean says:

    I love orthodoxy, both with and without the capital “O.” 🙂

    pstrmike,

    If it falls within what you consider Spiritual formation, I would love to learn some views on Paul’s exhortations in Romans 6, regarding being “set free from sin,” and “consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.” That seems to be the crux of sanctification, but it’s not clear to me how we, as Christians, can cooperate or exercise these teachings from Paul in our lives.

  22. Duane Arnold says:

    Michael

    “This year I want to spend twice as much time speaking about what the true church is and what the true church does then I do railing against these false expressions of faith.”

    I hope that we can. I’m currently watching younger friends RUN from most things labelled as “Christian” because the term itself has become largely attached in the popular mind to a movement that makes headlines for their political activities. For me, this represents what Paul described as “another gospel”. While this other gospel uses the same words and terminology as we do, the words do not have the same meaning. They have become something different…

    Perhaps the best we can do is to say that they are, in some sense, “separated brethren”. Meanwhile, there is a monumental task of reclaiming the words and symbols of our faith from those who have stolen and misused them. I think we have to do that not merely for ourselves, but for the sake of those who are running away from what the Church might offer to them.

  23. Everstudy says:

    JTK,

    I think it’s equally difficult for either side to accept the other side’s winner.

    W. was viewed as illegitimate by some because of the Florida mess. A Gallop poll in July, 2001 showed that 26% of votes did not view him as legitimate; 30% said he won on a technicality, and 17% said he stole it.

    Obama was viewed as illegitimate by some because of the birther myth (probably started by Andy Martin, Dem or Rep depending on what he was running for; alleged by Philip Berg in a complaint in federal court; encouraged by Trump, and believed by way too many republicans).

    Trump was viewed as illegitimate by some because of the alleged Russian interference/hacking (Donna Brazille, John Lewis, Swallwell, Sharpton, Nadler, Grijalva, Clinton). And we all remember the protests that marked his inauguration.

    I remember being in college when W. got elected, and it was common to have professors state the he wasn’t their president. I remember the campus democrats were passing out buttons that stated, “Not My President”.

    When Obama won, I remember looking at my wife and saying, “We’re not going to be like the other side, Obama is our president, like it or not.” When Trump won, I had a very liberal co-worker that stated the day after the election, “He might be president, but he’s not my president.”

    But, viewing the president as illegitimate is not new. CNN has a good article from 2010: https://www.cnn.com/2010/POLITICS/08/09/president.imposter/index.html

    I simply want the right to be held to the same standard as the left. But that starts with how we treat each other.

    “History will show that this country collapsed because it no longer had any agreed upon sources of truth.” Completely agree. We don’t even have shared definitions of words any more.

  24. Bride of Christ says:

    Eversudy, That’s an accurate summary and I agree. I never once said,” Not my President” when Trump won, even though I was very unhappy about it. I was furious at Comey’s last minute and highly irregular interference.into the election. My father, a Republican for seventy years, was ready to vote for Clinton until the moment Comey made his announcement. He changed his mind at the last minute and voted for Trump. I can’t help but wonder how many others were swayed by Comey’s involvement also. The Russians did interfere and spread lies and propaganda, but that was not a reason to declare the election invalid in my opinion. What Republicans are doing now is simply denying reality.

  25. Thanks to the online discernment thugs, our church always has at least a few people tripping about spiritual formation. But for me, its a high value.

  26. Nathan Priddis says:

    Adolf Hitler genuinely became Chancellor/Fuehrer. If I recall, Nazi polling was somewhere in the low – mid thirty range. The take away was a minority can achieve political supremacy when favorable conditions exist. Those conditions are mathematical.

    I found the Freedom Caucus to be a similar minority. They where able to somewhat paralyze Congress because the math favored them, despite their minority status.

  27. Linnea says:

    One things for sure since this last election….we need to be more grounded in our faith than ever before. Our country has become more divided, even amongst those who count themselves believers. We cannot become divided…the Holy Spirit has one mind, not two. We must cling to that which we know to be true through the scriptures. Hold on as never before and give each other more grace than ever before. This is what I know to be true.

  28. bob1 says:

    Speaking of denying reality–

    “The point is that we are all capable of believing things which we know to be untrue, and then, when we are finally proved wrong, impudently twisting the facts so as to show that we were right. Intellectually, it is possible to carry on this process for an indefinite time: the only check on it is that sooner or later a false belief bumps up against solid reality, usually on a battlefield.”

    George Orwell 1946

  29. Em says:

    Believing things we KNOW to be untrue?
    Sad and dangerous

  30. Jean says:

    Here’s how that works:

    First, someone like Sidney Powell or Rudy Giuliani creates a grand conspiracy theory that Dominion voting machines were hacked to change Trump votes to Biden. Notorious names are dropped, like George Soros, to lend credibility to the lies and also draw in the antisemitites. Powell and Giuliani know the truth, but create the lie to ingratiate themselves with Trump.

    Second, they tell Trump, who is looking for any means possible to overthrow the election and hold on to power, their theory. Trump doesn’t really care about whether the theory is true or false; he cares about whether the theory is persuasive enough and can be spread widely. He is results oriented. “Just find me the votes.”

    Third, Trump and his cronies spread the lie (Which the creators know to be untrue) to rank and file followers who trust Trump implicitly and also believe that Trump would never deceive them. Their loyalty to Trump (or hatred of Biden) creates a blindness that disables their rational reason.

    Fourth, Trump’s rank and file followers believe the lie.

  31. bob1 says:

    Jean,

    Yeah. I love how all of a sudden when the Dominion folks started suing for defamation, gosh, these righty sites suddenly “saw the light”! Yes!

    American Thinker magazine “apologized” after getting a defamation lawsuit. They said their stories about election were completely false.

    And that’s just one.

    Amazing how a defamation lawsuit will clear one’s head. 🙂

    And also, reports are that online disinformation fraud (lying) has dropped by 73% since Trump was blocked.

    https://www.mediaite.com/online/conservative-website-admits-its-stories-about-dominion-were-completely-false-in-massive-retraction/https://www.mediaite.com/online/conservative-website-admits-its-stories-about-dominion-were-completely-false-in-massive-retraction/

  32. Em says:

    Trump blocked may not be as purging as some here tell us. 😉

  33. Jean says:

    Em,

    Trump is not blocked. He can call a press conference or make a speech to the press or the nation at a moment’s notice. He can give interviews at a moment’s notice. He can call in to a talk show any time. He had multiple vehicles to communicate with the nation or his followers. He can call President Elect Biden any time like his VP did and uphold the dignity of his office.

    It seems he has purged himself.

  34. JimmieT says:

    I was reminded this morning of in the not too distant past a middle age women who attended our church came up before our service started and asked if I and the elders could lay hands on her and pray for God’s healing at the end of the service. This wasn’t the first time she had made this request as she had ongoing serious health issues. At the end of the service she made her way up front where we once again prayed for God’s healing. After praying we once again encouraged her with promises of God’s faithfulness & love from the Holy Scriptures. She returned home in her pain & suffering but encouraged in the promises of her God. We prayed God would miraculously heal her health issues and He did 10 hours later. He took her home to Him.

  35. Em says:

    thinking? well trying anyway…
    i “think” the earth is being groomed for the appearance of The anti-christ.. seeing news reports that give credence to UFOs and radio signals from outer space planets and strange beings among us and other miscellaneous outer space unidentified projectiles…?
    Good time, it seems to me, to stay brain-washed in the Word now 🙂

  36. Jean says:

    Em,

    Is it possible that he appeared already, but is leaving the stage on the 20th.

  37. Em says:

    Jean, okay, but doesn’t jibe with prophsey… 😁

  38. bob1 says:

    Great article by a history prof. knowledgable about democracy vs. fascism.

    Best part:

    “It is much more common for democracies to be undermined by seemingly legal actions taken from within than by violence from without. Hitler himself ultimately consolidated his power through legal instruments — for instance, the notorious Reichstag Fire Decree, which abolished the civil rights the democratic Weimar Constitution had granted.

    In recent times, we have seen this happen in Hungary, Turkey and Russia. We need to think about legal safeguards for our institutions more than we need to think about barricades. We need to know that our police and military commanders will be loyal and do their jobs. And there must be real consequences for officials who try to profit from spreading sedition. There need to be motions of censure at the very least against Hawley and Cruz.”

    https://www.latimes.com/opinion/story/2021-01-16/donald-trump-insurrection-capitol-beer-hall-putsch

  39. Jean says:

    Is anyone else enjoying the Saints vs. Buccaneers playoff game? For football fans, this is a great game, fun to watch. If the Buccaneers win, the street I live on will hear the shouting of one happy fan.

  40. Dan from Georgia says:

    “Watching” i.e….following on espn.com…the game. Not sure who to root for. I was a secondary Saints fan until Kamara 6-TD’d my Vikes.

  41. Dan from Georgia says:

    From what I read, Brees is done after the playoffs.

  42. Jean says:

    Dan from Georgia,

    Who, on earth, can give Mahomes a run for his money? Asking for a friend.

  43. Dan from Georgia says:

    Not sure. Wasn’t he injured in the game? If the Bucs win tonight (looking likely), that’ll be some game in Green Bay! Mahomes is just too good to beat also.

  44. Dan from Georgia says:

    Rogers vs. Brady in Lambeau!

  45. Jean says:

    Dan,

    Thankfully, that game will take place one week prior to my relocation to Wisconsin. I don’t know if it would be safe to root for Tampa Bay against the Packers within the borders of Wisconsin?

  46. Dan from Georgia says:

    interesting that you say that…I spent the first 42 years of my life in Minnesota and followed the Vikings…and secretly jealous of the Packers trophy cabinet. Of course being Packer-land, they take their football seriously. Not sure how they treat those that don’t root for the Pack, but I think you should be fine. But I can tell you that if you were a Bears fan and you rooted for da Bears in Packerland, I would fear for your safety. They are bitter rivals.

  47. Jean says:

    Dan,
    I was a huge fan of the Shuffling Crew back in the day.

  48. Dan from Georgia says:

    Was that 1985? The Super Bowl Shuffle! McMahon, Singletary, The William “the Refridgerator” Perry…wasn’t Walter Payton still around then?

  49. Jean says:

    Yes and Yes Dan.

  50. Dan from Georgia says:

    Possibly the most dominant Super Bowl team of all teams.

  51. Jean says:

    Dan,

    De McMahon/Payton/Ditka/ et al. Bears exuded panache. They were athletes and entertainers. A rare but fun combination from a fan’s perspective. They weren’t the team of the Chardonnay sipper, but the team of the working class Old Style drinker.

  52. WenatcheeTheHatchet says:

    a friend just highlighted this recent article at Firebrand that looks like a good introduction to the neo-charismatic/New Apostolic Reformation scene.

    https://firebrandmag.com/articles/neocharismatic-christianity-and-the-rise-of-the-new-apostolic-reformation

    It’s a robust introduction to changes in the last forty years in charismatic/neo-charismatic/New Apostolic Reformation scenes that this formerly Assemblies of God youth could not and would not sign on for. It’s also an interesting read to cross-reference to Julia Duin’s work at GetReligion lately.

  53. Dan from Georgia says:

    For you baseball fans, Hank Aaron has passed away today at the age of 86.

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