Gallup: Record Low 24% Believe Bible Is Literal Word of God

Gallup: Record Low 24% Believe Bible Is Literal Word of God

(Link):   Record Few Americans Believe Bible Is Literal Word of God

(Link): Gallup: Record Low 24% Believe Bible Is Literal Word of God by A. Cone

Excerpts:

May 16, 2017

Fewer than one in four Americans believe the Bible is “the actual word of God, and is to be taken literally, word for word” — a record low in 40 years of surveys conducted by Gallup.

The 24 percent of literal believers is a 4 percentage point drop from the last (Link): Gallup survey in 2014.

Among respondents, 26 percent believe the Bible is “a book of fables, legends, history and moral precepts recorded by man” — the first time that the biblical literalism view is not greater than biblical skepticism. In 2014, 21 percent were non-literal believers.

Continue reading “Gallup: Record Low 24% Believe Bible Is Literal Word of God”

Pat Robertson Basically Tells Woman Married to Lazy, Dead Beet, Idiot, Jerk-Face Man That Her Only Option is Separation (Not Divorce)

(The 700 Club episode I am discussing in this post: Air date Feb 21, 2017)

Women of America are STILL writing Pat Robertson for relationship advice. A phenomenon which prompted me to write this months ago:

(Link):  Women: Stop Asking Pat Robertson For Romantic Relationship Advice – Whether You Are Divorced or Single 

For the love of pickles, people of America, stop sending this guy your questions about dating, love, marriage, and divorce! Anyway.

Regarding the first letter on the video: Contra Pat Robertson, the Bible does NOT teach that the “husband is the head of the household.”

Don’t believe me? Then please check out the resources at (Link): this site, (Link): this site, or (Link): this site

But I am writing this post in regards to the second or third letter on this video (embedded below; Link to Video, You Tube).

Additional commentary by me is below this letter:

[Dear Pat]

My husband and I have been married for 21 years but have been together for 28.

We have two children, ages 26 and 25. Our 25 year old son is autistic and mentally disabled and needs constant care.

I alone care for our son.

My husband does not work or help in anyway. I struggle to make ends meet.

Continue reading “Pat Robertson Basically Tells Woman Married to Lazy, Dead Beet, Idiot, Jerk-Face Man That Her Only Option is Separation (Not Divorce)”

Alpha Females Part 2 – Defining the Terms – How Anti-Feminists and Complementarians Misrepresent Concepts or Terms

Alpha Females Part 2 – Defining the Terms – How Anti-Feminists and Complementarians Misrepresent Concepts or Terms

This commentary will be divided up among a few posts. Here is part 2.

(This post may be edited in the future to re-word things, polish things, add new thoughts or links)

More pages in this series:

Visit Part 1. | Part 3 |  A Response to Venker: Re: Personal Experience

Part 4

Introduction.

For those new to my blog:

I am a right winger. I was a Republican until recently. I am now a conservative Independent.

I was a conservative Christian for many years (I am no longer sure about what my religious views are), and I (Link): Am A Former Gender Complementarian (someone who believed in and lived out traditional gender roles, views which are based in large measure on incorrect interpretations and applications about gender in the Bible).

I sometimes agree with secular left wing feminists on some topics, but not always. At times, I disagree with secular and religious left wing feminists and have written several blog posts critiquing some of their views.

This series of blog posts is addressing the dating and relationship advice of author Suzanne Venker, who wrote a book called “The Alpha Female’s Guide to Men & Marriage” which she has lately been marketing online and on TV news shows.

Here is one article by Venker about her relationship views:

(Link, off site):  Society is creating a new crop of alpha women who are unable to love by S. Venker


Venker, like many conservative authors, conflate the word or concept of “feminine” (and “nice“) with terms, behaviors, or concepts, such as, but not limited to, being passive, quiet, demure, agreeable, docile, and “being a doormat.”

I have no doubt that Venker, and women like her, would likely reject that she is asking women to be doormats – but that is precisely what she is doing when she asks women, as she does in the articles I have read, to give up certain behaviors, especially if those behaviors are part and parcel of a normal, healthy adult’s boundaries and identity.

And Venker is insisting women do these very damaging things, insisting that they inflict damage on themselves, change themselves, make themselves smaller, all for the goal of capturing a man while single, or to keeping one happy while married. This is most definitely a throw back to 1950s America and earlier.

We’re in 2017, Venker, please join us here.

By the way, the type of man who needs a woman to repress her fierce nature, true views, or her voice and needs, to “be happy” in a relationship, and not feel like he’s being bossed around, are usually highly insecure or selfish men. Such men are not worth dating or marrying or trying to cajole or placate in the first place.

Many Conservatives further conflate the term “feminine” with women refusing to get their own needs met, and with always putting a man’s needs before their own (or the needs of children or other women ahead of their own).

Being feminine is defined as, or thought of, or confused by many conservatives and with most complementarians, with being a 1950s television show June Cleaver housewife, as though that is the one and only appropriate way for a woman to be.

In a nutshell, conservatives (this would include Christian gender complementarians) confuse “being feminine,” or mistake “being feminine,” with Being Codependent.

Codependency is not healthy for girls, women, or for their relationships.

However, codependent behaviors and attitudes are applauded and expected in girls and women by much of culture (certainly by most conservatives), and complementarian Christians often mistakenly assume that God designed girls and women to be codependents. This is so, even though the Bible through-out warns against anyone, male or female, being codependent.

The word “nice” is also often confused by a lot of people, certainly by complementarians and by some conservatives, with codependency.

When someone is “nice,” this generally means she will exhibit codependent traits.

She will not be assertive and stand up for herself or insist on getting her own needs met, but will go through life doing such things as quietly enduring suffering as boyfriends cheat on her repeatedly, co-workers take advantage of her on the job, or a husband strikes her with his fist.

Continue reading “Alpha Females Part 2 – Defining the Terms – How Anti-Feminists and Complementarians Misrepresent Concepts or Terms”

Why Progressive Christians Are Ineffective and Unpersuasive by P. Heck – Also: How Liberals Can Avoid Turning Off Right Wingers

Why Progressive Christians Are Ineffective and Unpersuasive by P. Heck

I agree with some of this guy’s points, but maybe not all.

He mentions Rachel Held Evans in his post – I think she’s right, for the most part, in her opposition to gender complementarianism, but I think she’s incorrect on other topics.

I have several more things to say below this link and long excerpt:

(Link): Why Progressive Christians Are Ineffective and Unpersuasive by P Heck

Excerpts:

… There is a reason that liberal Christian movements like those championed by Jim Wallis, Rachel Held Evans, Shane Claiborne and others are so ineffective and unpersuasive in American culture.

Rather than seeking to glorify and build the Kingdom of God, they regularly appropriate the language of Scripture to advocate for earthly, largely political causes that never address the principal need of humanity: redemption from sin.

Continue reading “Why Progressive Christians Are Ineffective and Unpersuasive by P. Heck – Also: How Liberals Can Avoid Turning Off Right Wingers”

Preacher Robert Morris Horrible Eisegesis and Mangling of the Book of Job – Having a Penis Does Not Make One Immune From Bungling Biblical Interpretation

Preacher Robert Morris’ Horrible Eisegesis and Mangling of the Book of Job

Edit (Jan 26, 2017): I received a tweet from someone on Twitter in regards to this post who assumes that preacher Morris was referencing some verse from the book of Job where God spoke to Job and asked Job if Job intended to defend himself by putting God down.

However, that was NOT the verse Morris brought up in his sermon – at least not the portion I listened to.

In his sermon, Morris referred to, I believe, Job Chapter 33 (Link) or later, where Elihu (or another person in Job) makes an appearance and judges Job.

Elihu, son of Barakel the Buzite, said that Job was seeking to justify himself in his own eyes or by his own righteousness (see Job 34 – 37). I may be getting the verses or character name wrong, but my point is, Morris pointed to a “friend” in the story who told Job (paraphrase), “You seek to justify yourself based on your own righteousness, and that is wrong.”

Morris agreed with this take on Job by Elihu (or by whomever in the text spoke it) – but the text itself does not say this this was true of Job.

The text does not say that Elihu (or whomever it was in the text who said this) was correct about Job or about God on this.

God shows up at the end of the book of Job to say Job had God right all along, but that Job’s “friends” (such as Elihu) spoke falsely of God – and I think God said the “friends” also spoke falsely of Job, if memory serves.

It makes no sense to me, why, when God says the “friends” (including Elihu) got things wrong, Morris goes against God’s own interpretation to say that Elihu (or which ever friend it was) was correct – very bad biblical exegesis on Morris’ part.

The guy (or woman?) who tweeted me cited Job 42:6 as saying Job repented – but the text does not say Job repented of “self righteousness,” which is what Morris was citing Job for.

Here is what that section of Job says (Link):

Then Job replied to the Lord:

“I know that you can do all things;
    no purpose of yours can be thwarted.
You asked, ‘Who is this that obscures my plans without knowledge?’
    Surely I spoke of things I did not understand,
    things too wonderful for me to know.

“You said, ‘Listen now, and I will speak;
    I will question you,
    and you shall answer me.’
My ears had heard of you
    but now my eyes have seen you.
Therefore I despise myself
    and repent in dust and ashes.”

(end quote)

It looks to me like one of the only things Job was repenting of in v.6 was:

Surely I spoke of things I did not understand,
    things too wonderful for me to know.

(end quote)

I do not see Job confessing in that section that he was relying on his own righteousness to be right with God and was also repenting of that.


One wonders why so many gender complementarians argue that women should not be preachers themselves but only listen to male preachers, when so many male preachers are heretics who get the Bible so horribly wrong on so many subjects.

This brings me to the topic of preacher Robert Morris and his sermon about the book of Job. (You can read the book of Job online (Link): here.)

I was watching Texas-based preacher Robert Morris (who is awful, for a lot of reasons I don’t want to get into in the here and now) of Gateway Church sermonizing about the Old Testament book of Job on TV a few days ago.

In the book of Job, God Himself refers to Job as a “righteous man” or communicates that concept.

As a matter of fact, God thinks Job is so great, godly, and righteous, he brags on Job to Satan. From the book of Job:

Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.”

— end Bible verse quote–

Here are a few more excerpts from the book of Job itself:

 In the land of Uz there lived a man whose name was Job. This man was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil.

— end Bible verse quote —

That sure sounds like a righteous man to me. If Job wanted to point to his righteousness to defend himself from the slander of his accusatory friends who show up later in the story, he would not be in the wrong for doing do.

If God Himself conveys that you are an upstanding kind of guy, it’s not bragging, or a sin of self-righteousness, for you to be in agreement with God on this, and to mention to your buddies you are righteous, godly, upstanding, what have you.

Continue reading “Preacher Robert Morris Horrible Eisegesis and Mangling of the Book of Job – Having a Penis Does Not Make One Immune From Bungling Biblical Interpretation”

American Christians, Liberals, Liberal Pet Groups, and Persecution

American Christians, Liberals, Liberal Pet Groups, and Persecution

(This post has been edited and updated, especially towards the bottom, to add more commentary or links)


For about the past year, I have thinking about blogging about this topic but put it off until now.

I have seen liberal Christians, ex-Christians, left wing Non-Christians, and moderately conservative Christians complain or mock American Christians who claim that American Christians are being persecuted in the United States due to being  Christian.

In the past, I’ve seen liberal Christian blogger RHE (Rachel Held Evans) comment on this subject on her blog, on her Twitter account, as well as the Liberal, quasi- Christian, Stephanie Drury bring this up on her (Link): “Stuff Christian Culture Likes” Facebook group from time to time.

bakecake
Above: Accurate Visual Representation of How Some Pro-LGBT Groups Treat Christians. (Artist Unknown.)

I’ve also seen moderately conservative Christians I am acquainted with discuss this in Tweets or on their blogs.

To reiterate a point I’ve made before, I do sometimes agree with SCCL’s Drury on some issues, and I even periodically Tweet her links to news stories I think she may want to share on her Twitter account or on her SCCL Facebook group.

However, I totally part ways with Drury on some topics – like this one.

The view of liberal Christians, ex-Christians, liberal Non-Christians, and even some moderately conservative Christians, is that American Christians are not under persecution in the U.S.A. for being Christian, or for practicing Christian beliefs.

I am not sure if the liberal or moderate conservative disagreement on this issue pertains to semantics (the terminology involved), or if they are actually blind and oblivious to the harassment that Christians, especially conservative, or traditional valued, Christians, face in American culture.

It is my position that American Christians do in fact face harassment – especially from the left wing – in the United States for being Christian, for wanting to practice their faith and carry it out in public, and for defending it in public.

If you are a liberal who objects to the term “persecution,” how about, instead, the words or phrases, “harassment,” “bullying,” “picking on,” “hounding,” or other terms?

I do not see American Christians getting a free pass in the United States to hold certain views or to practice their beliefs.

The left (and I’d include severe anti-theist atheists here, on this point, regardless of their political standing) insist that Christians keep their Christian faith walled off, private, and separate from all other areas of their lives.

Continue reading “American Christians, Liberals, Liberal Pet Groups, and Persecution”

One Foot in Christianity, One Foot in Agnosticism – In a Faith Crisis

One Foot in Christianity, One Foot in Agnosticism  – In a Faith Crisis

November 2016. (There is a moderate amount of swear words in the post below)

Some of the points in the post, in brief (the long explanation is below):

  • I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior before I was ten years old
  • I have read the entire Bible.
  • I spent many years reading books ABOUT the Bible (e.g., books about its formation and history)
  • I spent years reading Christian apologetic literature
    – so do NOT tell me that I “do not understand Christianity” or that I was “never a REAL Christian to start with”
  • I currently have doubts about the Christian faith and/or aspects of the Bible
  • I have not rejected Jesus Christ Himself
    (he’s pretty much Christianity’s only good feature or selling point, as far as I can see at this point)
  • I am not an atheist
  • I am not a Charismatic
  • I am not a “Word of Faither”
  • I was brought up under conservative, Southern Baptist and evangelical teachings and churches
  • Even though conservative Christians claim to believe in the Bible, they
    • cannot agree on what the Bible means or how to apply it – this is a huge problem as I see it in the faith
    • they diminish the role of the Holy Spirit or deny Him and that He can work for Christians today, because they are “hyper sola scriptura” and have reduced the Trinity to “Father, Son, and Holy Bible,” (this is also problematic),
      they usually do this because they are hyper-cessationist and paranoid or hateful of Charismatic teachings or practices
    • they teach that most to all of the biblical promises are not for Christians today but are only for the Jews of 5,000 years ago, there-by teaching that the Bible is NOT relevant for people today  (this is also problematic)
  • If you are a Christian, do not act like a smug dick about any of this and immediately disregard any points I have to make about God, the Bible, or other topics, because in your view, I am a “Non-Christian who was ‘never’ really saved” -not to mention, that is not even true.
    I was in fact “truly” saved, and I am / was, a “real” Christian.
  • No, I don’t want to enumerate a detailed list of reasons why I have doubts about God, the Bible, or the faith.If I were to provide such a list or explanation, your average Christian would only want to debate each and every point to argue me back into fully believing. (A witnessing tip to Christians: doing that sort of thing is NOT an effective way of “winning back a lost sheep to Jesus.”)

DETAILED EXPLANATION

I find that people who are both Christian and Non-Christian (and several other categories of people I bump into on Twitter and other sites) get frustrated when they cannot easily box me in.

People seem to be more comfortable with labels, but I’m not sure what label I would give myself these days.

I have briefly tried to explain my current religious beliefs on my Twitter bio, and I explain them a little more on my blog’s “About” page and have mentioned them in a post or two over the course of the last few years I’ve been blogging here.

Here is my background:

I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior prior to turning the age of ten.

That means: I believed that Jesus took my sins upon himself, he was without sin, he paid the price for my sins, and was raised from the dead three days after having been crucified – and if I believe in all that, if I put “saving faith in” Jesus (as opposed to mere intellectual assent), my sins have been forgiven by God, and I go to heaven when I die.

I read the entire Bible through when I was 18 years old, and afterwards, I read a lot of the Bible in the years after. Prior to that age, I had read portions of the Bible when younger.

Continue reading “One Foot in Christianity, One Foot in Agnosticism – In a Faith Crisis”

Gender Complementarianism – A General Response – from a Former Gender Complementarian Who Is Still A Conservative

Gender Complementarianism – A General Response – from a Former Gender Complementarian Who Is Still A Conservative

I was once a gender complementarian. ‘Tis true.

My old-fashioned Christian parents were gender complementarians and brought me up to assume that comp (gender complementarianism) is true.

The churches we went to were complementarian; the man was supposed to be “head of the household,” the wife was supposed to be passive and submissive; women were not supposed to hold “authoritative” or leadership positions within a church.

The Christian books and articles we had around the house were written from a comp perspective.

I was thoroughly indoctrinated in complementarianism from the time I was a kid.

I know complementarianism very well. I understand complementarianism.

I do not intend for this post to be an in-depth response, biblical or otherwise, to gender complementarianism. This is just a general response.

If you are a gender complementarian – as I once was – you are likely a conservative who takes the Bible literally, and you want to please God.

Furthermore, you have probably been told or taught…

-in or by complementarian materials, churches, preachers, or family members, that any other way of interpreting the Bible concerning passages about gender, gender roles, headship, submission, and marriage, are all “liberal” or are “playing loose with the Scripture.”

-There is only one “right” way to interpret the Bible, and by golly, it is the gender complementarian way, which is the only true “conservative” method, and hence, it’s the more “godly,” or “God Honoring,” method, and which takes the Scripture at “face value”

-Further, this reasoning goes, if you reject the comp hermeneutical method of the Bible, you will slide into secular, left wing, feminism and begin doing things that would make most any conservative recoil, such as start supporting abortion on demand and stop shaving your armpits; you will burn your bras.
You will join a liberal denomination that ordains openly lesbian lady preachers. You will want to grow a mustache because you want to be “just like a man.”
You may even start punching helpless, weak, defenseless kittens for fun.

Now, as a woman who is more than likely right wing, conservative, and adheres to traditional values, you are horrified or in deep disagreement with left wingers, the Democratic Party, and liberal social values (such as support of LGBT causes, abortion being legal, etc).

I get all that because I used to be just like you. In some ways, I still am very much like you, only minus a belief in complementarianism.

Continue reading “Gender Complementarianism – A General Response – from a Former Gender Complementarian Who Is Still A Conservative”

Teen-Raping Texas Pastor Gets life in Prison After using the Bible to Justify Abusing Women – Equally Yoked is BUNK

Teen-Raping Texas Pastor Gets life in Prison After using the Bible to Justify Abusing Women – Equally Yoked is BUNK

Far below is a link to a page about a pastor who raped girls in and from a church. Notice in the article how other church-goers who went to church with this guy described him as being “very nice” or as being a “good Christian.”

My Christian parents brought me up to think if I wanted to marry, that the best place for me to meet potential spouses would be at a church. I suppose the assumption with that is that the type of men who attend church regularly are going to be “safer” or better moral choices than the type of dude you might meet at a bar.

However, in the last few years of running this blog, I have seen (Link): so many news stories of church-going Christian men who get arrested for abuse or perversion, I now have my doubts about that.

Secondly, single women out-number single men in churches. I know that every church I’ve been to in person, I’ve been one of the few singles there. The only men in attendance and 80 years old, which would be fine if I were 80 too, but I’m not, and May December relationships (Link): make me want to barf. (I do not want to date or marry dudes who are over 5 or 10 years my age.)

I’ve done blog posts before about Pat Robertson, who has criticized women on his Christian TV show, for having married jerks, perverts, or abusers. Robertson seems to think women should be able to instantly spot if a man is a jerk, creep, loser, or abuser from the start. He’s wrong and an idiot about this.

The fact is, as this article below shows, even other adults who go to church with these kinds of deviant men are not aware of what a creep or pervert these guys are.

These are not people who are dating the guy – they are simply sitting next to him in church every week. If they cannot spot the perverts among them easily, why do Christian conservative men like Robertson think women who date men should be any better?

Continue reading “Teen-Raping Texas Pastor Gets life in Prison After using the Bible to Justify Abusing Women – Equally Yoked is BUNK”

On Not Filtering Every Choice Through the Bible

On Not Filtering Every Choice Through the Bible

This is one of those topics I’m working my way through right now. Maybe a year from now, my opinion will flip on it. But here is where I am now.

I was first made aware of this post from John Piper’s “Desiring God” web site via someone posting to SCCL Facebook group.

Here it is:

(Link):  How to Drink Orange Juice to the Glory of God by John Piper

Excerpts:

  • I said that one of my reasons for believing this comes from 1 Corinthians 10:31. “Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” I asked, “Is it sin to disobey this Biblical commandment?” Yes.
  • …Some of you then asked the practical question: Well, how do you “eat and drink” to the glory of God? Say, orange juice for breakfast?
  • ….Orange juice was “created to be received with thanksgiving by those whobelieve the truth.” Therefore, unbelievers cannot use orange juice for the purpose God intended—namely, as an occasion for heartfelt gratitude to God from a truth heart of faith.
  • But believers can, and this is how they glorify God. Their drinking orange juice is “sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer.”

Yes, it’s an entire post explaining why and how Christians may drink Orange Juice to the glory of God.

This is a part of Christianity that I am glad to leave behind. In my faith crisis of the last few years, there have been some advantages to ceasing turning to the Bible as an authority in decision-making in life in every area.

Continue reading “On Not Filtering Every Choice Through the Bible”

Christian Publisher: ‘Women are Losing their Salvation Because They Masturbate’

Christian Publisher: ‘Women are Losing their Salvation Because They Masturbate’

The chuckle-head espousing this view specifically cites the use of sex toys in his equation. I’m not sure if he realizes that women do not need to use any sex toys to masturbate.

I can’t figure out if this guy is against all female masturbation per se, or only women using sex toys on themselves, or what.

The Bible doesn’t even discuss masturbation (no, the story about Onan in the Old Testament is not about masturbation – it was about a guy’s failure to fulfill familial duties).

The Bible doesn’t say anything about masturbation forfeiting a person’s salvation. Even if a person wants to consider masturbation a sin, adultery, fornication and other sexual sins do not forfeit a person’s salvation, either. The Bible says God will forgive those sexual sins.

I sometimes wonder what these types of Christians expect randy, unmarried Christians to do – the ones who do experience strong sexual desire.

These types of wacko Christians – the ones who think masturbation is satanic – tell you (adult single) that you should not have sex with another person, but then they also tell you not to masturbate, either.

And so, how are randy Christian singles supposed to get that itch scratched, exactly? People are staying single longer than they were decades ago. Meditating on Jesus or singing a hymn or some Bible reading is not going to work.

The only positive take away I can leave with here is that this guy, as wacked as he is, at least realizes that Christian women experience sexual desire. Most Christians pretend as though most women (especially married ones) totally lack a libido.

In Christian-Land, only men are “visually stimulated” and want sex and experience sexual desire. Meanwhile, women in Christian-Land are mistakenly assumed to only care about emotional needs and only want to pursue non-sexual hobbies, like knitting scarves.

(Link):  Christian Author Mack Major Says Female Masturbation Is ‘Direct Path To Satan’ – Huffington Post

(Link): Christian Publisher: ‘Women are losing their Salvation because they Masturbate’ by D. Edwards

  • Christian author and publisher Mack Major warned over the weekend that “Christian women are losing their salvation” by using dildos, which he called a “direct path to Satan.”

Continue reading “Christian Publisher: ‘Women are Losing their Salvation Because They Masturbate’”

Unanswered Prayer and Diversity of Doctrine and Biblical Intepretation (podcasts)

Unanswered Prayer and Diversity of Doctrine (podcasts)

I was going over some of the other broadcasts of the Christian apologetics show “Unbelieveable” when I saw at least two topics that I’ve addressed on my own blog before.

A couple of problems I’ve been having with the Christian faith, among several, are unanswered prayer and the fact that Christians cannot agree on what the Bible says, how to implement what it says.

I wonder what the point is in having a book that is supposedly written by God, if those who say they believe in that book (and who say that they believe in that same God) never- the- less do not agree on what the book teaches, and that some of them use that book to justify abusing people (financially, sexually, emotionally, physically).

You would think if God wrote a book (through men or otherwise) that he would make all of that book’s points abundantly clear so that his followers would not mess things up and get into prolonged disagreements about what the book means or how to carry out that book’s teachings.

I also note that Christians who defend prayer try to “explain away” what the biblical text says about prayer.

Jesus does in fact say in one or more of the Gospels that what ever you ask for in his name he will do – but as quasi-Christians like myself point out to the true believers, many times, your prayers will go unanswered, to which they reply, well, Jesus did not REALLY mean to say that whatever you ask for his name will come to pass.

Here are the links to the podcasts:

(Link):  Does prayer make sense? David Wilkinson vs Ed Atkinson – PODCAST

(Link):   Can Christianity be true if Christians can’t agree on doctrine? Andrew Whyte vs Nabeel Qureshi – PODCAST

The ex-Christian guy who is on that show who argues that the conflicting interpretations of the faith and the Bible are problematic for Christianity, or may imply that Christianity is false, has a You Tube channel where he makes videos on this topic. Here it is:

After listening to both those podcasts a couple of days ago, I was not completely satisfied with the responses given to the skeptics by the Christians.

It seems to me that some Christians really under-estimate how damaging some of these particular doubts or criticisms of the faith really are.

Despite that, both shows were still interesting to listen to, and I related to what the ex-Christians or the skeptics were saying.

—–

Here are previous posts I’ve blogged about these subjects before:

Diversity of Interpretation:

(Link): Christians Who Can’t Agree on Who The Old Testament Is For and When or If It Applies

(Link): More Musings about Applicability of the Old Testament, Via One Man’s Testimony About Jeremiah 29:11

(Link): Christians Once Again Trying to Explain Who The Bible’s Promises Are For – TGC Article

(Link): Pat Robertson Contradicts Himself On Healing and God’s Will

Unanswered Prayer:

(Link): Critique of Pastor Groeschel’s “I Want to Believe But…” Sermon Series

(Link):  How to Deal with Unanswered Prayers via Pastor Bil Cornelius 

(Link): Christian Viewer Expresses Disappointment in God, Wants To Know Why, In Spite of Years of Service, God is Not Helping Him

(Link):   When All We Hear from God is Silence by Diane Markins

(Link):   Gordon Robertson’s Quasi Insensitive or Lacking Advice to Cancer Patient / Unanswered Prayer / Christians should just sometimes admit They Do Not Know

(Link): Blaming the Christian for His or Her Own Problem or Unanswered Prayer / Christian Codependency

(Link): On Prayer and Christ’s Comment to Grant You Anything You Ask in His Name

(Link): Gary Habermas joins Janet to discuss dealing with doubt in the Christian life (Re: Unanswered Prayer)

(Link):  When you show God you don’t want it, that’s when God will give it to you – according to Joel Osteen – I disagree

Additional:

(Link):  Gallup: Record Low 24% Believe Bible Is Literal Word of God (May 2017)

When Christians Love Theology More Than People by S. Mattson

When Christians Love Theology More Than People by S. Mattson

I first saw this mentioned on Defend The Sheep’s Twitter account.

I’ve been thinking the last few months of writing a similar essay. The guy who wrote this arrived at some of the same conclusions I have.

(Link):  When Christians Love Theology More Than People by S Mattson

Here is how the introduction starts:

  • Beyond the realm of churches, religious blogs, and bible colleges, nobody really cares about theology. What does matter is the way you treat other people.

Continue reading “When Christians Love Theology More Than People by S. Mattson”

Christians Who Take the Bible Literally Cannot Agree On Much of Anything

Christians Who Take the Bible Literally Cannot Agree On Much of Anything 

This is a page that touches on a topic I’ve brought up on my blog a time or two.

(Link):  Unpublished: Being Biblical Means Being Doctrinally Tolerant

The author of that ‘Unpublished’ page mentions Roman Catholicism.

As much as I consider the constant Protestant and Baptist disagreement over certain things in the Bible problematic, I don’t think the solution is becoming Roman Catholic and accepting that their Pope’s ex cathedra statements or their Magisterium is the answer.

Catholics, for one, get all sorts of things wrong – they believe that Mary was bodily assumed into Heaven; they believe that praying to or for the dead is acceptable; they believe in the perpetual virginity of Mary; they believe in Transubstantiation; they reject that salvation is by faith alone – all sorts of wrong things.

Then Roman Catholics tack on 3 or 4 books (called the Apocrypha) to the Jewish and Protestant canon to “prove” to the Protestants that yes, they have “biblical” support for some of their weird doctrines.

Although the Vatican tells Catholics that birth control is wrong and bad, and that pro-life is the way to go, I have seen many news reports that American Roman Catholic women get abortions and use birth control.

Several years ago, I even saw websites by American Roman Catholics who say they support the legalization of abortion. Catholics are not in unity – not even in doctrine, so I do wish they’d stop lobbing this accusation at Protestants, as though the RC is any better.

Their Pope and Magisterium can sit there all day long and claim that the official Roman Catholic stance on Topic X is “blah blah whatever,” but that doesn’t mean the rank and file Catholics are going to agree with it, or follow that doctrine or rule. Because sometimes they don’t.

I do by and large still believe the Bible should be taken literally – as opposed to the liberal Christians who treat the Bible with extreme skepticism or who act like it’s okay to treat the Bible as though it’s silly putty and warp it any way they want – but I do acknowledge some of the points raised in this page:

(Link):  Unpublished: Being Biblical Means Being Doctrinally Tolerant

Excerpts:

  • People who claim to literally interpret the inspired and inerrant Word of God do not agree on what the bible says.
  • Christian Smith calls this “pervasive interpretive pluralism.” And this pervasive interpretive pluralism isn’t just found among progressives and liberals. It is found among evangelicals and fundamentalists, among the very people who claim that they are reading the bible very, very literally.
  • Pervasive interpretive pluralism exists among biblical literalists.
  • Which brings us to the problem at the heart of Protestantism.
  • The problem at the heart of Protestantism is that the bible is unable to produce consensus. This isn’t a theological claim. This is an empirical fact.
  • Sola scriptura produces pluralism. The “bible alone” creates doctrinal diversity. Biblical literalism proliferates churches.
  • The alternative is to be delusional, pretending that opening the bible brings everyone to a consensus. Unfortunately, that just doesn’t happen.

Continue reading “Christians Who Take the Bible Literally Cannot Agree On Much of Anything”