In this older video below, we have the final few minutes of an interview of Tim Keller by professor David Eisenbach from Columbia University. The professor had written a book “…about the gay rights movement because [he] was appalled by the oppression and the discrimination against homosexuals in [his] America.”
Eisenbach pushes Keller hard. He is sober, straightforward, and keeps pushing his point. His disposition is, I must say, refreshing while Keller is clearly uncomfortable seems to use humor as a defense.
The first question is a good example of question begging. “What do so many of the churches have against homosexuals… ?” Keller could have simply answered with one word. “Nothing.” It’s the churches who do not preach the gospel to homosexuals that have something against them. The “gay rights movement” that Eisenbach spoke of, however, is a different story. Individuals and movements are not the same things. Churches ought to stand against any movement that seeks to glorify sin because to do so is love.
Keller also says that the Bible has reservations about homosexual practices and that the Bible says, “Homosexuality is not God’s original design for sexuality.” I don’t how else to put it than that Keller is being deceptive. He continually attempts to bring in love, because, as we know in these times, such topics are safe. Very safe. And they’re easy too. It might surprise many that Jesus didn’t talk that much about love. He did talk a lot about repentance, however, which, considering Man’s condition before a holy and righteous God, was one of the most loving things he could have talked about.
You can bet that Eisenbach knew what the Bible says about homosexuality. And he knew he was forcing this poor preacher into a corner. And he knew that Keller was squirming, and if he didn’t enjoy watching someone he hated squirm, he missed a wonderful opportunity to do just that. Keller would have looked stronger and more loving too if he would have simply laid it down straight for this poor professor. But he didn’t. I wonder why? I know he knows better.
My daughter told me about this couple. They are two homeschool girls who have set up a video blog called “Girl Defined” on YouTube. Their target audience is teenage Christian girls. Here is a sample:
But the real proof of the impact they’re making is in the comment section. It was Dennis Prager who said, “No one hates like a liberal.” I would personally one-up him on that with, “No liberal hates like a feminist liberal.” There is consistency in the hate, however. It is all self-righteous, as in, “Hate who we say to hate or you’re a hater, and love who we say to love or you’re a hater.”
And if that’s not enough proof, check out the Youtube feed for examples of even more self-righteous hate, the very kind of real hatred that Jesus said that His followers would have to endure. Way to go girls!
Regarding the video above, look at what the schools are doing as it pertains to modesty.
Geoffrey R. Kirkland of “vassal of the King” wrote a piece on responding to those who accuse street preachers of pushing people away from Jesus. Personally, I,m of the mind that this fearful thinking comes from the personal, Jesus-is-kinda-like-my-boyfriend-only-not, feminist-driven theology of our current zeitgeist. It is an unbalanced theology that ignores truth while laying mercy and love down as thick as molasses. It also raises Man up to a point of deserving God’s love. Salvation is a two-way street in this theology. There’s the one who needs salvation, who, except for a few flaws, is otherwise a good person deep down. And then there’s God, who looks through all the outer crud to the beauty inside each person, and pines away wishing that inner person would come to his senses. The fact that Man is Ephesians 2:1-3 is foreign. Fear is the result. Fear that man will be driven away from God, even though that would be impossible because he is already as far away as he can possibly get.
I love to see street preachers. I can remember walking past them as an unsaved man and feeling fear, a good sort of fear, a Biblical sort of fear to be exact. I was afraid of being judged by the almighty God that I knew existed and at the same time hoped didn’t. Some plant, others water, that sort of thing.
Anyway, here is Kirkland’s list:
I was exploring the idea of faith because I realize that, not only do I struggle with faithlessness, I live in a world that struggles with it.
The word faith has been bastardized as of late. Can I just say that? It has morphed from a trust that God is sovereign to positive, if-I-believe-hard-enough-I’ll-get-that-material-idol-I-so-long-for thinking. How does this bastardization play itself out in everyday life? Here are a few examples off the top of my head:
This is faithlessness friends. And in the same way that ethics is a major concern in a world that has essentially dispensed with ethics, faith in God is a major concern in a Church that has dispensed with faithfulness. We hear a lot about faith. Will he heal me. Will he get me that job. Will he prosper me. Will he slay me in the spirit or make me laugh for an hour. Will he make my folly spiritual?
I start my thinking in these times with the confession that something is wrong. I don’t assume, given that assumption, that the problem is always elsewhere. I’ve been guilty of every one of these examples of faithlessness at one time or another, to some degree or another, in some form or another. It is my belief that one of the problems we have with faith is that we haven’t identified our faithlessness in applicable ways.
In life we have the rules, and then we have the exceptions. A sampling of the rules go something like this:
All of these statements are not only true, they are obviously true, and so are the rules. But there are exceptions:
In the revolutionary shift that our society is now deep into, the shift appears to be based on the rejection of the rules in favor of the exceptions. Sometimes one exception can prove a rule false. If the rule is, there is no god, then the discovery of a tangible enough god to convince the most hard-core of the secular humanist would prove that rule false. The attempt, I suppose, is to carry this sort of logic into general life where one exception voids the rule and then attempting to order society and life around the exceptions. So these become the new rules:
So in contemporary thinking, the exceptions are the best way to order a society. But, as with all rules, there would appear to be exceptions even to this rule. Case in point:
This is the rule, yes. It’s not the exception to the rule. It is the rule. But since Islam is not Christian, and since Islam has a fair amount of vitriol for Christians and Jews, then the rule stands supreme, and so the exception:
…is suppressed. That this thinking is more dangerous than a gun is cast aside for whatever reason and we are left with this:
We live in a time of absurdity, to say the least, and it is a dangerous absurdity.
One of the most fascinating things about Christianity is its doctrine of grace; a terribly misunderstood doctrine in this day. While perhaps the majority of those who call themselves Christian in this age see grace as liberty to sin without eternal consequence, real grace bears no resemblance to that mindset.
Every time I have the opportunity to teach the children of parents who attend our church, I will always ask an all important question. How does a person get to Heaven? With very little exception the answer involves the flesh, or works. It looks inwardly at what man brings before God. Now granted these are children, but we must also realize that this is a spiritual deception, a deception that most likely pervades the home from which these children reside. That is man’s natural inclination. I am good, and because I am good I deserve good things.
The problem is that scripture states a clear case to the contrary. Man is not good. And even the best man that ever lived is still not good, but rather is as filthy rags. The vast majority of people I encounter see themselves as basically good people who deserve a wonderful afterlife. Christianity makes no promise that this is going to happen, and in fact warns that unless men repent of their sins it absolutely will not happen. The Bible is clear, very few in existence are headed to eternal bliss.
Perhaps one of the most shocking and perplexing realities of this truth can be found by contrasting people who see themselves as good with a serial killer of the worst sort, Jeffrey Dahmer. Dahmer visited gay clubs and bathhouses and put sleeping pills in the drinks of his victims. He brought them home, chopped them up, had sex with them after they were dead, ate parts of them and kept other parts for souvenirs. He was a walking nightmare.
One of the most fascinating aspects of grace is that Jeffrey Dahmer, by all indications, will be spending an eternity in Heaven while other otherwise good people will not. For the average man this seems beyond the pale. Here this one man is, he doesn’t cheat on his wife, he provides for his household, he pays his taxes and is a pillar in the community, yet he is Hell bound while another, who is the worst sort of human being is headed for heaven. To say that this appears to be unfair is an understatement.
The Christian however understands a key point. It is not how well we live but rather does Jesus Christ live in us, and us in Him? Are we depending on Jesus’ righteousness before God, or our own righteousness? This does not sit well with the man who does not understand the Gospel, as might well be imagined.
Dahmer was asked by his father “when did you first feel that everyone is accountable for their actions?” Dahmer’s answer is priceless, and it involves God’s law.
Well thanks to you for sending ah, that ah, creation science ah material. Because I always, I always believed the lie that ah, evolution is truth, the theory of evolution is truth, that we we all just came from ah, the slime and ah, when we, when we died, you know, that was it, there was nothing. So, the whole theory cheapens life and ah, started reading books about how–that show how evolution is just a complete lie. There’s no, there’s no basis in science to it, to uphold it, and have since come to believe that the lord Jesus Christ is the true creator of ah, the heavens and the earth, and this didn’t just happen, And I have accepted him as my lord and savior, and I believe that I will–as well as everyone else–will be accountable to Him.
We are currently looking for a Church. I listened to a preacher on line, one that I actually appreciated for not pretending that the things I deal with in my heart and head all week are not actually happening and so ignores it, and I was struck by a thing he said near the end of his sermon. (Sermon title: “Psalm 73”) I’ll paraphrase it from memory. He said that some Christians see Donald Trump as the savior of America, then he laughed and talked about how absurd that was. Well, I couldn’t agree more. But I couldn’t help but wonder where he got the idea that Christians see Trump as a savior. I also wondered if he realized that, in saying this, he was making a straw man. Now, while I’m sure that one could say just about anything they wanted, good or bad, about christians, and then find one that actually fits the description, I can only say that when it comes to a Christian who sees Trump as the savior of America, I’ve never met one. I’ve only met those whom it would be easy to make that accusation against, if one happen to be running a little short on charity as he was making it.
Still, as I said, I liked this preacher somewhat because what he preached was comforting to me in an age that has gone insane. He broached many a hot button issue in light of scripture, and then taught from the scriptures on how to hold to faith in the midst of it.
I also loved another thing he said, because I have been suspicious all along about this one thing, and he confirmed it for me. At the beginning of another sermon he gave a list of subjects that were the hardest to preach on, and of course, politics made that list. (Sermon title: The Marriage You Had At First 8/13) He said that he was once asked during a campaign season if he would be preaching on politics and his answer was no, because if he did he would lose his job. I really appreciated his honesty in admitting that he avoided at least that one subject because of his fear of man.
In another sermon (at about the 12 minute mark) from another church, the preacher presented a different straw man. I have to give this preacher some kudos though because the name of his sermon was, “The Gospel and Politics”. In his sermon he said that there were people who thought that the Bible should be put aside and that he should talk only about politics during the run up to an election. I highly doubt that anyone really wanted that, rather, I’m guessing that, by reframing their desire into a caricature, it was easier for him to reject them. He said that government can’t legislate morality. That’s easy preaching right there and I couldn’t agree more. He said that hearts have to be changed, and government can’t change hearts. That’s more easy preaching and I couldn’t agree more, and if this is revelatory news to his congregation I have to say that I kind of feel sorry for him and them. What I want to know is, what do these things have to do with politics? He’s told us what the government can’t do. Why doesn’t he teach what it is doing that it ought not be doing in specific terms? Of course, I know the answer to that one. It’s because a lot of what it is doing, like killing babies and indoctrinating children into a secular humanist LGBT mindset, many in his congregation love, and he knows they love it.
As for my own experience, the fellow Christians I’ve met realize that a government that teaches children that there is no god but government, that they are nothing but evolved cosmic dust, that homosexuality is a good and righteous thing, that calling the things sin that God calls sin is wrong and evil, that we can, if we want to, choose our gender, and that extends the red carpet for the butchers at Planned Parenthood to teach promiscuity and murder, is an evil government. But then again, another topic that made the list of unsafe topics earlier was the raising of children. So my guess is that, for a preacher to suggest that steeping your children in 12 years of LGBT and anti-Christ secular humanism training might not be one of the most loving things you could do, is unlikely to happen.
I also read an article this morning posted on Townhall, a site that I have the highest regard for, and that also presented a straw man. I like the guy who wrote it too. His name is Cal Thomas. But the subject wasn’t Trump this time. It was Roy Moore who is at present being accused of “sexual misconduct” during his campaign for the senate. Thomas presents for our examination an argument from the Bible given by some unknown fellow named Jim Zeigler in favor of Moore. I won’t address the argument he made, and whether it was a good or bad argument because that is irrelevant. True Christians (not blindly assuming that describes Zeilger) making bad arguments from scripture is not, after all, an uncommon thing. And if making arguments from the scripture wasn’t bad enough, when such arguments are made on behalf of a fellow sinner in an election campaign, such is more than likely akin to adorning your pigs with pearl necklaces during their morning slop.
Thomas’ slight of hand in the article is, I’m sure, unintentional. Here it is for you to judge for yourself:
That the religious left has made similar analogies to advance their political agenda is no excuse. It proves my point. Religious liberals long ago stopped preaching a gospel of personal salvation in favor of a social gospel that is more social than gospel.
Conservative evangelicals are repeating this error.
The straw man is “the religious left”, and if you support Moore then you are becoming just like them. But there is a huge difference between allowing your politics to inform your religious views and allowing your religious views to inform your politics. If you want to know what the religious left believes, all of them, the Bible is the last place you’d want to look. You’d get a more accurate picture by visiting the DNC website. And, to the extent that this is true for conservative evangelicals and the RNC website, I would have to whole heartedly agree with Thomas. The only trouble is, the RNC hates Moore just as much as the Democrats do. Ultimately, however, the question is, is Zeigler a true enough example of conservative evangelicals to label everyone under that heading as “making the same mistake”? I think not.
But in defense of those who are making this “same mistake”, I must admit that they have my compassion because when it comes to all things political, as I’ve already pointed out, it is a fairly safe assumption that their teachers on this subject were not their shepherds, because our shepherds were too afraid of being fired for broaching the subject. And the shepherds who have this fear of man have my compassion also, because we all have something to lose when it comes to speaking the truth in these dark times, and we were all raised in a time where silence reigned as supreme when it came to the touchiest of issues.
Thomas goes on with his article to take us into a confusing morass of apparent contradiction. To outline, he started with Zeigler’s Biblical argument and how he thought it was a bad argument. So far so good. Then he associates conservative evangelicalism with Zeigler and asserts that they are in danger of becoming corrupted themselves for being willing to overlook the corruption of Moore… I think… I guess. I honestly am not entirely sure. Then he suggests that political activism by conservative Christians is the same as confusing the Gospel with politics. After that he swerves right back on a true track with this paragraph:
In an essay for Modern Age Journal, titled “Beyond the Reformation of Politics,” Alec Ryre, professor of Christianity at England’s Durham University, writes that Luther believed governments were ordained by God to restrain sinners and little else. Real transformation of individuals and thus societies, he reasoned, could be achieved only by a changed heart, which is the work of the church, not government.
So I’m now completely confused. I look around me and see evil being condoned and institutionalized by my government. I see every day the carnage in lives. And my response is to… what? Not support Roy Moore who supposedly did something decades ago that can only be termed in our age as “inappropriate”? Am I suppose to believe also that “a changed heart” is an impossible thing to be hoped for when it comes to supporting a person who will have a little say in exactly how our government ought to go about “restraining sinners”? I agree with Thomas with all I can muster that the government has no mandate from scripture, and I’d add even the constitution, to “transform individuals”. Unfortunately, that’s exactly what our government does do, and on a massive scale via public education. Am I supposed to look at all of this evil and at the same time try to keep my own hands squeaky clean by not deigning to suggest that one corrupt sinner might do a better job at restraining evil than the corrupt sinner who is outspoken in his belief that we all ought to glorify more sin, teach more sin to children, and celebrate the killing of more babies?
But this is a normal thing in our day is it not? Christians are confused, and understandably so. We are hamstrung when it comes to being a salt and a light to a dying world. We watch with a feeling of helplessness all week long as our communities spiral downward. And we go to church on Sunday and we enter another world, a world in which the past 6 days never happened. We are asked to look inward, and to try to live more moral lives. When it comes to processing all the murkiness that we swam through the last 6 days, as we waded neck deep in politics from dusk till dawn, we can be assured that we will be offered no help on how to process it. So we are left with the Rush Limbaughs, Sean Hannitys, and Fox Newses, or maybe even the MSNBCs and CNNs of this world, and their worldly perspectives, to teach us how we ought to digest, respond and react to all the evil that we see. And then we are ridiculed for doing our best, and warned that we are in danger of becoming corrupted because we hate what we see and experience, and we think that the very evils being condoned by our government ought to be restrained.
I’m sorry, but I’m not buying any of it. I know I don’t love like I ought to love, but I still can’t drive by a school house without being heart broken. I can’t watch the vast majority of the young people I’ve seen grow up in our Churches walk away from the faith after 12 years of secular humanistic indoctrination, and not be a just little upset about it. If that’s wrong, if wanting a government that restrains evil with the power of the sword, rather than endorses and perpetuates it with that power, is the same as being corrupted, then I’m afraid that I’m hopelessly corrupted, and that I’ve horribly misunderstood the concept of being salt, light and love. But I dare not pray that what little love I do have grows cold so that I can be like others who are able to look with indifference on what I see, and proclaim within my own heart to my self, “at least I’ve got mine, at least I’m not corrupted like them”.
Let’s face it, guns are for killing. But it’s worse than that really. Yes, they are for killing animals for food and protection, but for the moment the killing of animals is not a problem. The fact is they are made for killing people, and for some, including myself, that’s a real problem.
When it comes to living in a Utopian paradise, put me in the front of the line. Who wouldn’t want to live in a place where there are no guns, and there is no need for guns, and whatever other fantasies one might have that seem ever to be in our futures if we could only get that one benevolent dictator to control us, and rid society of evil, and allow all us good folk to have no worry but how to enjoy ourselves? But… I’m also a realist.
Being a realist, I realize that there are harsh realities with which I must cope. One of the harshest of those realities is that man is not basically good in his heart and core. Those who preach the contrary are the same ones who create Hells on earth attempting to bring about their fantasy land Utopias. They’ll do great evils because they are convinced that their Utopian goals justify it. All the while they preach that evil is relative. They have to preach that in order to hold on to their concept of man as being, at his core, good while simultaneously observing the unpleasant realities that the same is not true.
So, what if they’re right? What if man actually is basically good? In that case, I’ll keep my weapons because they won’t be a problem anyway. I won’t need them to protect myself, and I won’t hurt anyone, because everyone else is basically good, and I’m basically good, and good people don’t do things that cause others to need protection from them. And what difference does it make if lots of other good people have weapons also? We’re all basically good. Right? But we all know that this is a pipe-dream, but it’s still a win for me, because my ability to protect myself and my family from evil is not threatened for one thing. And, there is a deterrence to evil for another thing.
On the other hand, what if they’re wrong about the heart of man? If man is not basically good, as the famers of the constitution supposed, then what man will we hand our guns to in order to bring about their promised Utopia? What government would we trust to not enslave us once we’ve been disarmed, as history teaches us that governments most certainly do? Well, the answer would be no one, which is why we have the 2nd amendment in the first place. So it’s another win.
CS Lewis said it in as good a way as I’ve ever heard it said. He accused the Utopians with: “You castrate, then bid the gelding, be fruitful”. We are told over and over that morality is relative, that what is right for one person is not necessarily right for another. We are preached to day and night that we evolved from nothing to life, that we are nothing more than bags of chemicals that exist as the result of happenstance. That, dear friends, is the moral castration. But then we are told to act as if morality and goodness actually does matter in the grand scheme of things. We’re not told why, we’re not given a basis for it, we’re just supposed to take someone’s word for it, because, Utopia. In short, we are told to be morally fruitful. Why, might I please ask then, are we shocked when people act according to what they are taught, and not according to a made-up morality that bears no ultimate consequence for ignoring. Yet evil continues to happen. Out of the moral fog of moral nothingness comes a hand that continues to slap us silly. And then we become confused. What we are told to think, and reality, are all of a sudden in mortal combat. And then we are comforted by the promise of ever more laws, as if the evil perpetrated against us was not already illegal. And blame is then placed on the realist, for he knows that laws can’t fix bad hearts, and bad governments who assist in making hearts evil can’t protect us.
This post has nothing to do with Trump, but, nevertheless, it’s a new day in politics thanks largely to him. The truth is, Trump is downstream of the political realities as are all politicians. So if we are going to discuss politics, we must look upstream of the politicians and Trump.
One of those realities is that we really do have a de facto three party system of sorts in the US. There’s the Democrat Party, of course, that’s one. And then there’s the Republican Party which is constituted by social and fiscal conservatives. So lets look at our current situation considering these three “Parties”. For the sake of discussion, I’ll not refer any longer to the Republican Party, but rather, I’ll refer to the Social and Fiscal Parties that actually do make up that party.
To start, there is no love lost between the Socials and Fiscals. They are in sync only as it pertains to fiscal policy. They are in favor, though in varying degrees, of less regulation, lower taxes and less spending, perhaps slightly more so than the rarely ever heard of group, moderate Democrats. But moderate Democrats do exist, and I’d say in larger numbers than we think. The Democrat must live with the likes of Frederica Wilson, naked men dancing in front of little girls, and men in the girl’s bathrooms. They differ from the Fiscals only in that they’d rather join with these guys and embrace tyranny than to be in any way associated with the Socials and their agenda. This fact has hitherto seamlessly welded the otherwise moderate democrats to the leftist radicals with which they share their party. They have always united around their holy grail, abortion. That’s why in every election abortion is a major issue that rises to the surface. It simply unites the left.
The fiscals, on the other hand, hate tyranny more than they love perversion, vice and the government funding and institutionalization of both. So they are willing to at least pay lip-service to the Socials, especially when they know that they are powerless to advance the their profile and pro-family agenda. It is in this way that Trump has leached the Republican divide to the surface. He is willing–or he is wonderfully bluffing–to, at worst, not stand in the way of the Social Party, and at best to help. That combined with a Republican majority has forced the Fiscals to tip their hand just enough to prevent the Social’s agenda.
Speaking as a Social, I see advantages in this given the fact that I live in a predominately liberal culture, which the US clearly is. One of those advantages is the fact that Fiscals are stymied in their desire to join with democrats in their agenda of advancing Secular Humanism, abortion and indifference to the importance of the family. Social’s, though I’m convinced that most of their unpolitical constituents don’t realize it, are a small group. And, when you throw in another twist that many of the Socials love their government checks more than they love the social agenda, then we can see that the power actually wilded by Socials is rather small. This is especially notable we we consider the ease with which those who want to indoctrinate the next generation into perversion and Marxism are allowed access to children in the public school system.
But what would it look like if there really was a split and the Republican party found itself relegated to the history books? Well, to start with, I think the Fiscal party would explode with an exodus from the Democrat party by giving the democrat fiscal moderate a place to go while still holding securely to their Secular Humanism, their holy grail, and their new perversions. It would hand the Democrat party over to the radicals, and perhaps for the first time in quite a while that party would be seen for what it is.
It would also force lip-service Republican politicians to choose between their pontificating and their actions. I’d venture to guess that considerably more than half would throw in with the Fiscals. But then, the Socials would also have to do some soul searching. Their favorite politician might force their own hands and their true allegiances. For those who deep down see the government as the ultimate provider of security, liberty can feel scary, perhaps a little too scary.
The final fallout would find the Fiscals as the largest party. It would be constituted by wealthy Republicans, moderate wealthy and middle class democrats and Socials beholden to their government checks. The second largest party would be the Democrats, constituted by the rich elites and their masses of uneducated, uninformed dependents from the inner city. The smallest would be Socials I do believe, because let’s face it, there are consequences for handing the institutions of indoctrination over to Marxists and Secular Humanists. There are the red states, and then there are the blue schools, but there is no such thing as red school… even in red states, and even if there were a couple, they are outside the reinterpretation of the constitution.
Still, to advance their agenda the Fiscals would need the help of one of the two other parties. So we could expect at least two things to happen, and the politicians, believe me, would understand this. Bills would be tailored to exploit the commonalities between the Fiscals and the other two parties. So we’d all get that tax cut because a bill would be presented to cut taxes and the Fiscals and Socials would be all in. The amendments thrown in to destroy the Bill, or to carve out pork, would be rejected outright. There would be plenty of opportunities for that later. Then a bill would be written with Secular Humanism’s agenda in mind. It would be perversion lite, yes, but it would pass because it would be written to appease the Fiscals and the Democrats. If you can imagine a way to expand abortion, even including being paid to have one perhaps, then it would get passed.
Second, spending would go through the roof, because government spending is the freeway to power. For the more liberal fiscals, there is no problem so big that government spending won’t cure it. Utopia has always been just beyond a little more government spending, and in search of that paradise this new party would go. The Fiscals will find their knew best liberal political friends most accommodating when it comes to advancing their agenda with the Democrats. Of course, the president would always be a Fiscal, sense he would be able to easily cast off the Social’s agenda, and the extremist sexual perversions that had before plagued liberal candidates during the campaign as well.
In my mind, the split in the Republican Party would be the last hoorah. Like the Titanic breaking in half before it sunk, this would be the end of America as we know it. The deficit would explode. Poverty would explode too, because lets face it, Fiscals are concerned only with keeping what’s theirs and not with creating a society capable of civility, and so therefore capable of prosperity. “I’ve got mine, and so the fatherless can take their government checks and go to Hell.”
If you’re still reading, I’d like to know your thoughts. I’d like to be challenged with some other angles.