Gay Marriage • What slippery slope?

“Of course there will be no progression of the push for homosexual marriage rights to force ministers or churches to acquiesce to homosexual demands to marry them in their churches!” “All we want is the right to be married, that’s all!”

Those seem to be the arguments made against the possibility of further demands being made once the so-called gay rights movement has succeeded in achieving its current aim of what it calls Equal Marriage, which is code for homosexual and lesbian marriage on a par with traditional marriage, which has, in most nations, during most eras, been seen as between a man and a woman, although some cultures allowed polygamous marriage, albeit with a man being married to a number of wives, not to another man.

Those critics of gay marriage who have argued that there is a potential for Equal Marriage to lead to further demands have been largely shouted down or ridiculed by the homosexual marriage lobby, but now there is evidence that the slippery slope theory is being born out, as the Danish Parliament, which was the first to recognise homosexual unions, passed a Bill this week which forces the state Lutheran Church to allow homosexual couples to be married in sanctuaries.

Denmark forces churches to perform same-sex ‘marriages’

BY BEN JOHNSON

COPENHAGEN, DENMARK, June 7, 2012, LifeSiteNews.com

The nation of Denmark has voted to force churches in the established Evangelical Lutheran Church to perform same-sex “marriage” ceremonies inside their sanctuaries, although one-third of all the denomination’s priests say they will not participate in such rituals.

Danish parliament voted by an overwhelming 85-24 margin to compel churches to carry out unions for same-sex couples that are identical to heterosexual marriage celebrations.

The law takes effect June 15.

Since 1997, homosexuals have been able to get “married” in a blessing ceremony after the normal church service. Under the new law, priests may opt out of performing the “wedding” service for theological reasons.  However, a bishop must arrange for a replacement. The bill’s prime sponsor – Denmark’s church minister Manu Sareen, who is an agnostic – called the vote “historic. “I think it’s very important to give all members of the church the possibility to get married,” he said.

The Danish People’s Party opposed the legislation. “Marriage is as old as man himself, and you can’t change something as fundamental,” said Christian Langballe, the party’s church spokesperson.

Former politician Stig Elling said it was “positive” that “there are so many priests and bishops who are in favour of it.” “We have moved forward,” he said. “It’s 2012.”

The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Denmark has been Denmark’s official state church since 1849.

The question that should be raised here is, what right should a democratically elected Government have to force the Church to do its bidding?

Stig Elling, a former politician claims that this is a move forward because we are in 2012. But how can this be a move forward on any date, past or present, for a nation which is 80% Lutheran Christian?

It is surely a move backwards because now marriage has been redefined and one of the sacraments of the Church has been redefined. The point being that the Government should never be allowed to dictate to the Church how the Church conducts its affairs.

In similar news:

The passage of the Danish bill comes as pro-family activists the world over are warning that the homosexualist agenda is threatening the basic freedoms of religious believers all across the West.

Although the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution prohibits the government from dictating church doctrine, religious institutions have already been subjected to government censure or private lawsuits if they refuse to allow homosexual couples to rent their facilities for a ceremony that deeply offends the church’s core doctrines of marriage and family.

The city of Hutchinson, Kansas, recently adopted a non-discrimination statute that would require houses of worship that rent their facilities to the public to allow same-sex “marriages” on the premises.

“If a church has a parish hall that they rent out to the general public, they could not discriminate against a gay couple who want to rent the building for a party” such as a same-sex ceremony or reception, according to a city FAQ about the ordinance.

Jacksonville, Florida, is currently considering a similar ordinance.

In January, Judge Solomon Metzger ruled a New Jersey Christian retreat house affiliated with the United Methodist Church could not refuse to rent its premises out for a homosexual “wedding.”

There has to be a separation of Church and State for the Church to be allowed to be truly independent. Once the State tells the Church how to operate it has, in effect, control over the lives of the Christian population in regard to what they believe and how they function, and sets a dangerous precedent for other issues which may arise.

Traditionally Church affairs are dealt with by their Congress or Synod of Bishops, not by the State.

The likelihood is that this will also set a precedent for a gathering movement of a very small minority group, the homosexual community comprises of less than 2% of the population in most developed nations, dictating the familial arrangements of the majority.

Should minority groups be allowed to exercise this kind of power over democratically elected Governments, or should Parliament govern for the people by the people without interfering in the lives of the majority of the people based on minority demands?

 

Posted by Steve


289 thoughts on “Gay Marriage • What slippery slope?

  1. There has to be a separation of Church and State for the Church to be allowed to be truly independent. Once the State tells the Church how to operate it has, in effect, control over the lives of the Christian population in regard to what they believe and how they function, and sets a dangerous precedent for other issues which may arise.

    Agreed. It’s ridiculous that a parliament has any authority in ecclesiastical affairs.

    Also goes the other way too with Christians trying to enforce religious law on the rest of the population.

    This has been an issue before like in 1930-40s Germany when the Nazis appointed their own clerics and created their own Reich Church.

    The issue is whether or not STATE churches like, the Danish National and German Lutheran Church want to give up the privileges they have as the STATE church eg state funding, tax free status of church donations and giving.

    Denmark taxes its subjects and gives that money to the Danish National Church. Finland, Sweden and Iceland do too. To not pay the tax you have to officially leave the church.

    The state pays the salary for Norwegian clergy.

    Germany still collects taxes for churches and pays Bishops salaries. This is all based on ancient treaties.

    Tax collection: Any member of a state church in Germany gets the church tax deducted by the German tax authorities. This amounts to 4.2b € a year for the Catholic Church and 3.7b € for the Evangelic Church (Lutheran/Reformed). For this, the various state tax authorities are compensated with 3% of the collected tax in average. A small price to pay in order for not having to collect those taxes by themselves.

    Bishops’ salaries: this is a result of the secularisation at the beginning of the 19th century. The Princes of the Empire expropriated the vast land holdings the various bishoprics had held for centuries, so one of concessions made to the Vatican was the payment of the bishops’ salaries. This has been reaffirmed through the course of various treaties. For the Lutheran/Reformed side, the situation is more complicated, as the Evangelic Church is organised into several independent synods, each with its own set of treaties with the state governments concerned. Many guarantee payment of a fixed sum rather than payment of salaries.

    Not quite sure about the situation with the Church of England.

    This situation would be unthinkable in most other countries.

    Could you imagine Australians paying a tax to their church?

    I wonder if they have to tithe as well as pay a church tax?

  2. http://blogs.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/andrewbolt/index.php/dailytelegraph/comments/nationalising_the_churches_for_the_same_sex_marriage_agenda/

    The mainstream media has picked up on this story, albeit in an opinion piece. What is interesting is the comments. I’ll bet London to a brick that the majority of the commenters are not believers, yet still believe the same as Steve, Zorro, Margot and I. How telling that non-believers understand, yet God-despiser, Greg and wazza refuse to

  3. Of course it has been omitted from articles that this is a STATE church. This legislation does not apply to other religious denominations in Denmark.

    In 2005, a church member was able to have their excommunication overturned by the Supreme court.

    Notice that 30% of clergy would refuse to do it. That’s 30 out of 100 folks, hardly the majority and they’re not being ‘forced’ anyway.

    And it’s hardly a surprise given below

    A very large majority of Danes, including members of the state church, are in favor of this legislation. The Telegraph should have noted that the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark (also known as the Church of Denmark) is a “folk church.” I.e., it is most concerned with serving individuals on the basis of their Danish nationality and citizenship. It is intentionally vague on the question of whether homosexuality is a sin, and it permits openly gay and lesbian clergy. Since 1997, it has blessed members in registered partnerships. Most Danes go to church to be baptized, confirmed, married, and buried. Until now, same-sex couples were refused the third occasion.

    http://www.getreligion.org/2012/06/gay-church-marriages-in-denmark/

  4. @God-despiser

    “Of course it has been omitted from articles that this is a STATE church. ”

    Um, if you read the articles it is there in black and white. But, as I have said previously, comprehension is not your strong suit.

    Whilst you are furiously googling for more unicorns to throw in our path, you seem to be missing our point. It is the beginning of the slippery slope. And, it is happening elsewhere, in non-state churches. And the sickening thing is, it is all the fault of people like you, Greg and wazza. People who place the plaudits and back-slapping of men over honouring God and His precepts.

  5. “That’s 30 out of 100 folks, hardly the majority and they’re not being ‘forced’ anyway.”

    Many thanks for the heads-up Bones, I obviously haven’t been paying attention – I missed the point at which the Kingdom of God became a democracy.

    You teachers sure are smart people, aren’t you?

  6. Bones,
    First of all you claim the article didn’t mention that the Lutheran Church is the state church of Denmark, but, as Roundhouse pointed out it does, saying:

    The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Denmark has been Denmark’s official state church since 1849.

    If you’ll take the time to read through the article I posted you will see this.

    But you still miss the point of what is being said. The Danish Government has taken it further by legislating that the churches have to marry same-sex couples, which, if the Government had any Christian decency, empathy or knowledge, they would realise is controversial and unscriptural.

    Secondly, they have indeed taken it a step further than allowing gay unions, which they legislated for six years ago.

    It is now a precedent set for other Governments to follow.

  7. Sorry, the Danish Government legislated for it in 1997, which is 15 years ago, so enough time to allow people to get used to the idea of gay marriage, and push the agenda along to the next phase.

    And the churches are essentially forced. The priests have a choice, but if they decide not to marry gays, the church has to nominate someone who will. That is forcing churches to comply.

    It is said that over 440,000 church members have vowed to leave the Lutheran church over this.

  8. Nearly every person who acknowledges an aversion to homosexuality does so on the basis of what he or she believes the Bible has to say. In their mind, there is no doubt whatsoever about what the Bible says and what the Bible means. Their general argument goes something like this: Homosexuality is an abomination and the homosexual is a sinner. Homosexuality is condemned in both the Old and New Testaments. Therefore, if we are to be faithful to the clear teachings of Scripture we too must condemn homosexuality. Needless to say, this premise is being widely debated among evangelicals today and seriously challenged by biblical scholars, theologians and religious leaders everywhere.

    It rarely occurs to any of us that our reading of Scripture is profoundly colored by our own cultural context and worldview. In light of the post above and since I happen to speak and write on this topic, I thought you might find some of these posts of particular interest and relevance. I would particularly recommend the following:

    “Genesis 19: What Were the Real Sins of Sodom?”
    “Leviticus 18: What Was the Abomination?”
    “Romans 1: What Was Paul Ranting About?”
    “Romans 2: Paul’s Bait and Switch”
    “Genesis 1: Turning the Creation Story into an Anti-Gay Treatise”
    “Why No One in the Biblical World Had a Word for Homosexuality”
    “Exegesis: Not For the Faint in Heart”

    (Links to these and more posts may be found by simply clicking the link below and then selecting the “Archives” page.)

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  9. Hi Alex,

    Reading through your list I see there several topics which have been repeated not by serious evangelical or Biblical scholars, but by those who would also be considered liberal in their approach, some of whom deny much of he authenticity of scripture.

    In attempting to diminish the implications of homosexuality, and to normalise it, even suggesting it is not regarded by God as sin you join a throng which is prepared to produce error for the sake of promoting a lifestyle which is regarded by God as wrong.

    In other words, it is not merely the opinion of heterosexual evangelical ministers, but of God Himself.

    Only a person with ulterior motives could take the passages mentioned and attempt to revise their meanings based on a preconceived idea through eisegesis.

  10. You see, Alex, if you can sow doubts in the minds of those who believe marriage is Biblically expressed as being between a man and a woman, you make great inroads even into the theological processes of the average believer who relies on sound exegesis of trained scholars for their doctrinal stance.

    I have read the alleged exegesis of those who produce similar working titles to yours, and even discussed scripture with them, but they always rely on spurious interpretation of scripture coupled with assumptions which do not fit the whole pattern of the Bible, not to forget the need to exclude certain passages which some liberal theologians have deemed unnecessary or subject to question.

    Those of us who do not have the need to demonstrate that the homosexual or lesbian lifestyle is, as the Bible clearly and consistently states, sinful, can only watch in amazement at the way people are prepared to deconstruct truth into error to prove their point.

    As God says in Romans, even the Creation itself, or nature, if you prefer, testifies to the act of homosexual sex being unnatural, and clearly not in the mind of God when he created human beings.

  11. Did Andrew Bolt (or Steve – Bones) get /anything/ right in his post on marriage equality in Denmark?

    Here’s the Herald Sun story describing the first bill back in March, before it passed:

    DENMARK’S centre-left government has presented a bill in parliament that, if passed as expected, will enable gay people to marry in the state Evangelical Lutheran Church…

    According to the bill, a pastor will not be obliged to marry a gay couple if he or she does not want to, but couples can turn to another pastor who will agree to perform the ceremony.

    So – it’s only the government church, and even there priests can refuse to perform the ceremony.

    Sadly, it’s difficult to imagine how much more misleading Andrew Bolt could have been about it. First, his absurd headline:

    Nationalising the churches for the same-sex marriage agenda

    Who on Earth is talking about “nationalising the churches”? I defy Andrew to name even one prominent Australian calling for “nationalising the churches” at all, let alone “for the same-sex marriage agenda”. Name just one, Andrew.

    The Church of Denmark has been the state church for centuries. Unlike in Australia, there is an actual Minister in the parliament who administers it. As there has been for centuries.

    The UK Telegraph article Andrew Bolt quotes gets it wrong on the subject of which churches are affected (wrongly suggesting it’ll be “mandatory” for all of them), but even that version makes it clear that pastors don’t have to carry out same sex marriages if it’s against their beliefs:

    Under the law, individual priests can refuse to carry out the ceremony, but the local bishop must arrange a replacement for their church.

    Guess which critical sentence Bolt did not quote in his post?

    Instead he made the following outrageous claim:

    The criminalisation of conscience and faith is despicable and sinister:

    “The criminalisation of conscience and faith”?! Let’s be clear about this. Denmark has not made it a “crime” to be an anti-equality bigot, even if you’re a priest. Hell, it hasn’t even made it a sackable offence in its own church – you can just refuse to carry them out and someone else will do it for you. Nobody is going to be charged with a “crime” for refusing to marry two gay or lesbian people.

    “Criminalisation”, indeed.

    As for Andrew’s shamelessly disingenuous closer – “Is this the next-but-one step in the Australian campaign?” – that’s even quicker to deal with.

    There is no government-run church in Australia. There is no proposal to create a government-run church in Australia. And if, after the Marriage Act is finally amended to remove the gender-based discrimination, someone did for some crazy reason propose the creation of a government church – and I don’t know who Andrew fears doing that, because I doubt very much it’d be anyone on the diabolical “secular humanist left” – then the solution for people of bigoted conscience would be pretty darn simple: don’t become priests in that government church.

    So, to summarise:

    The Denmark situation is completely different to here because we don’t have a government-run church;
    Nobody is proposing to “nationalise the churches” in Australia, least of all gay people.
    The churches in Denmark aren’t “nationalised” either – as has been the case for centuries, there’s one state church and a whole host of independent churches and other religions;
    It’s only the government church in Denmark that’s going to be required to carry out same-sex marriages;
    Even within that government church religious people will retain the right not to carry out same sex marriages;
    Denmark has not “criminalised” the act of refusing to marry a gay person;
    The proposed legislation before the Australian parliament retains not only the right of both individual religious people AND also their churches to discriminate against gay people.
    Andrew Bolt’s post completely omits these points and shamelessly implies the opposite.
    If anyone confused Andrew Bolt for some sort of Libertarian, his campaign in favour of government discrimination and against individual liberty on the subject of marriage equality should put paid to that.

    UPDATE: Do you want to hear from the comments? Surprisingly enough, it looks like Bolt’s readers have fallen for it hook, line and sinker:

    You can now see these people are acting on Satan’s command. By trying to destroy God house. Final days are definitely upon us.
    The end is now clear (Reply)
    Sat 09 Jun 12 (11:11am)

    If there’s a reader on that front page who’s realised the truth of the Danish situation, it’s buried in so much deluded spittle I didn’t see it.

    http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2012/06/09/its-okay-if-bolt-shamelessly-misleads-readers-on-same-sex-marriage-because-the-godfather-of-one-of-his-kids-is-gay/

    Some interesting replies to his shameless piece of propaganda.

    I thought religion and state were separate entities; never the twain to meet. We are becoming more like the Islamic states where religion is politics.

    Rob G (Reply)
    Sat 09 Jun 12 (10:53am)

    The last resort when faced with such growing oppression is armed resistence. Government’s should remember that.

    Anthony (Reply)
    Sat 09 Jun 12 (01:10pm)Some asked: “what next”?

    Well, if they have achieved to make it compulsory for a priest to act against his religion, the next logical step would be to make it compulsory for straight folk to become homosexual, no?

    And I’m just getting sooooo tired of “we are discriminaaaaaated against”: since gays have alread complete legal equality, this is not about “marriage”, it’s about “bullying” and about “power”.

    Rita (Reply)
    Sat 09 Jun 12 (02:44pm)

    Certainly stirred up the nutbags.

  12. Should minority groups be allowed to exercise this kind of power over democratically elected Governments, or should Parliament govern for the people by the people without interfering in the lives of the majority of the people based on minority demands?

    Are Christians a minority group?

  13. First of all, Bones, I reported this here before Andrew Bolt at the Herald Sun. I had a different source. What Bolt says is his opinion. Your argument is entirely with him, but he hasn’t commented here.

    The fact is, since you had no argument to what we have said here, you needed to concoct something.

    Nice try!

    Secondly, I said the following:

    And the churches are essentially forced. The priests have a choice, but if they decide not to marry gays, the church has to nominate someone who will. That is forcing churches to comply.

    The priests have a choice but the bishops must nominate another if one refuses. That is being forced to comply. That is wrong.

    The point is that you are becoming more isolated and venomous in your defence of an ungodly wish.

  14. Bones, once again you live in cloud cuckoo land with your comments by contriving that Christians are making the demands. They’re not.

    You are.

    Christians (67%) are standing for what is already the existing definition of marriage, and not wanting those who are the minority (2%) making the demands to succeed.

    In Denmark 80% Lutheran.

  15. Drip, drip, drip…

    The UK Daily Telegraph reports:

    ‘Nicola Rothon and Helen Bicknell tried to register joint maternity after their daughter, Satya Amani, was born in December, but were denied permission.

    The women, both 34, then filed a claim alleging discrimination and demanding that state prosecutors protect their constitutional rights.

    Their case has led to heated debate in Ecuador and is being followed closely in a conservative society which is 80 per cent Catholic.

    The Catholic Church itself has so far kept a low profile in the dispute, but is emphatic in embracing only heterosexual marriage.

    Antonio Arregui, president of the conference of bishops, said: “There is only one mother.”

    Partners of lesbian mothers to get paternity leave 17 Apr 2009
    He added that the view of most Ecuadorians was that “a normal family is father, mother and children”.

    Miss Rothon and Miss Bicknell met 16 years ago in Kenya, where they worked as volunteers. They entered into a civil partnership in the UK in 2010.

    They now teach English and raise organic produce on the outskirts of Quito, the capital of Ecuador.

    Their baby was conceived using a sperm donor, who was a mutual friend, and Miss Rothon carried the child to term.

    In 2008 Ecuador adopted a new constitution extolling “families of diverse types” and recognising civil unions, giving them the same rights as marriage apart from joint adoption of children.

    Miss Rothon said she is concerned that, if she were to die, the government might keep her daughter because her partner has no biological tie to the infant.

    She said: “If something happens to me, does she go to an orphanage?” She added: “The constitution protects us but there is a loophole and that needs to be fixed. It will not be easy.”

    Miss Bicknell said: “It’s always the case that when you’re the first ones, you’ve got to fight to change the laws. For any child, it’s best if two people love them and want to give them the best.”
    The women are now considering taking the case to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.

    Isabel Salazar, 42, a member of an Ecuador group that rejects gay marriage and abortion, disputed the women’s claims to joint parenthood.

    She said child raising required the “complementarity of a male and female parent” and added: “We respect gays and lesbians, but they are a marginal group.”

    Sarahi Maldonado, an activist supporting the rights of sexual minorities in Ecuador, said: “It is outrageous to believe that you can’t have a family in which no man is present.”

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/southamerica/ecuador/9303573/British-lesbian-couple-in-Ecuador-maternity-battle.html

    Child: “Mummy, can I watch the two mummies on playschool, please””

    Mother: “Go and ask your mother!”

  16. Margo, you said: “Perhaps we could start by reading the Epistle of Jude, particularly verse 7…”

    ME: I’m familiar with Jude 7. I presume the Greek word that you are referring to is “ekporneuō,” often translated into the English as “sexual immorality”. The question I would have for you is: By what great exegetical miracles do you then conclude from this generic term for sexual immorality — “UM, IT’S HOMOSEXUAL; THAT SETTLES IT, LET’S MOVE ON.” That distances us from God, the writer and the text. Remember EXEGESIS is about getting out of the text what is truly there in the first place. We don’t get to read into the text things that are not there.

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  17. Steve, you said “Reading through your list I see there several topics which have been repeated not by serious evangelical or Biblical scholars, but by those who would also be considered liberal in their approach, some of whom deny much of he authenticity of scripture.”

    ME: Can you be specific? Who might those be? The overwhelming majority of the people I quote from are indeed serious evangelicals or Biblical scholars.

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  18. Steve you said, “Alex, if you can sow doubts in the minds of those who believe marriage is Biblically expressed as being between a man and a woman, you make great inroads even into the theological processes of the average believer who relies on sound exegesis of trained scholars for their doctrinal stance.”

    ME: As a graduate of one of the most academically rigorous evangelical seminaries the country, I have no desire “to sow doubts” in the minds of any one. I do, however, have a priority to apply responsible exegesis to the biblical text.

    Exegesis, as you likely know, comes from the Greek verb which means “to draw out”. Simply put, exegesis is about drawing out from the text the true meaning of a Bible passage. Or phrased a bit differently, it means getting out of the text what it originally meant to the author and to the original intended audience, without reading into the text the many traditional interpretations that may have grown up around it.

    Exegesis then is an investigation. The question we always have to be asking is: What’s going on here? The reader today must somehow try to enter the world of the biblical writer and seek to understand what the writer was saying. If we fail to pay attention to the world in which the Bible was written, we will simply read biblical texts, infuse them with meaning from our social and symbolic world and conclude that the Bible speaks directly to us.

    In contrast to this, what many, lie yourself, do instead is what some theologians refer to as “frontloading”, that is to say, they read their own personal, political or ideological beliefs back into the Bible, instead of reading out from the Bible what the original writers were saying. This process of reading one’s own ideas into interpretation of the Bible is called “eisegesis”. Exegesis and eisegesis are conflicting approaches to interpreting the Bible. Why? Exegesis is reading out from the Bible what the original writers were saying. Eisegesis is reading one’s own ideas or prejudices back into the Bible. Exegesis is about getting out of the text what is truly there in the first place. Eisegesis is about putting into the text something never intended by the author. Exegesis is drawing out the true meaning of a Bible passage. Eisegesis is at best unwise, and at worst extremely dangerous.

    But exegesis is not an easy task and is not for the faint in heart. Like most things of value in life, it requires some work on our part. We also must be mindful of the fact that we are all guilty of eisegesis, to some degree, because we all read the Bible with modern eyes. We all have our own beliefs, worldviews and biases, and letting them influence our interpretation of the Bible is an ever-present danger. So whatever we can do to leave our assumptions behind before we approach the text will only help to not taint what we’re going to come out with. It is respectful of God’s gift to us to go after the author’s intentions and meanings before arriving at our own.

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  19. If you contextualise Jude 7 you will understand where Margot is coming from, since scripture isn’t based on an interpretation of one word but on the meaning of the word within the whole canon.

    Since the reference of the extreme sexual depravity (ekporneuo) is given as Sodom and Gomorra, then we have a context in which to examine which kind of extreme sexual depravity is meant.

    You will say, by a stretch of context, that the sin of Sodom and Gomorra was lack of hospitality, to which we will say, where then is the extreme sexual depravity Jude is referring to if the sin was only lack of hospitality? It was in the men of the city wanting to have carnal or sexual knowledge of the angels, who appeared as men, who visited Lot to warn him to flee.

    Which is surely Margot’s point. Here, in Jude, is a reference, and very clear, to sexual immorality at Sodom and Gomorra, and not just ordinary sexual depravity, but ‘ek’-‘porneuo’, which indicates extreme sexual depravity.

    You will deny that this refers to homosexual sex demands made by the men of the city, but we will maintain that it surely does refer to male sexual advances, and that is why Jude mentions Sodom and Gomorra in the same sentence, adding that the men went after strange flesh, which equally indicates that the flesh they were sexually interested in was not female, since it would be normal for man to pursue the sexual favours of a woman, but strange for a man to pursue the sexual favours of someone or something other than a woman.

    For this they suffered the vengeance of eternal fire.

  20. Steve, you said: “As God says in Romans, even the Creation itself, or nature, if you prefer, testifies to the act of homosexual sex being unnatural, and clearly not in the mind of God when he created human beings.”

    ME: Arguments from “nature” have not carried their own weight Research into the Romans’ likely understanding of what it is or is not “natural” does not support our attempts to stigmatize gay sex as “unnatural. What Paul means by natural is what other writers of his day meant by it: it simply meant “what one expects.” Paul also applied the phrase “para physin” to God’s action in 11:24, when god engrafted Gentiles onto the Jewish olive tree — and there “para physin” was an appreciation, not a reproach. So, if same-sex coupling is, in Paul’s terms “unnatural”, so is your salvation.

    I’d suggest you read my posts, “Romans 1: What Was Paul Ranting About?” and “Romans 2: Paul’s Bait and Switch”. Links to these and more posts may be found by simply clicking the link below and then selecting the “Archives” page.

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  21. The point is that you are becoming more isolated and venomous in your defence of an ungodly wish.

    Rubbish. You are trying to instill fear and don’t talk to me about venom when you have those two vicious attack dogs on this thread. And yes you have tried to silence debate. Greg has gone. Those other two morons continue with their personal obscene attacks in an effort to bait and silence those who have an alternative point of view.

    This is what Signposts has become. I hope you’re proud of it.

    Personally I’m disgusted by your antics and your two lackeys.

    Enjoy putting up your anti-Catholic and homosexual hate. You and Zorro and Roundhead can all feel proud of what a good job you’ve done by silencing those, not through the quality of your argument, but through personal attacks. I just don’t want to hang around people like you.

    As for me, like Greg, I’m over it.

    Have fun reading your own articles.

  22. Steve, you said: “You will say, by a stretch of context, that the sin of Sodom and Gomorra was lack of hospitality…”

    ME: If you read my post, “Genesis 19: What the Bible Really Says Were the Sins of Sodom?”, you’ll see that what I do say what was going on the Sodom and Gomorrah passage is so much more than what you call “a lack of hospitality”. In Ezekiel 16, we read that the prophet declares the word of God saying that a self-righteously religious Jerusalem had not only imitated the vile deeds of the Sodomites, but had become even more corrupt. Then in Ezekiel 16:48-50 the prophet spells out explicitly what God calls the sin of Sodom

    Here we have the Bible commentating on the Bible. We can hardly get better Bible commentary than that. Here we have what the Bible says is God’s commentary on the story of Sodom and on Sodom’s sin. Note that contrary to what some are taught, there is no mention of homosexuality in God’s commentary of Sodom’s sin.

    It doesn’t end there either. As we go through Ezekiel 16 we find that God, speaking though the prophet, spells out in striking “in your face” condemnation explicitly what Sodom’s abhorrent conduct entailed.

    This is not my interpretation; it is that which is given in the Bible. You and I do not get to rip passages from their context and replace them in another age for the sake of convenience. And we don’t get to make things up as we go along. As always, we are stuck with the internal interpretation of the text as the primary meaning.

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  23. But, to make the point clear, Alex, we are not, in these posts, discussing whether homosexual sex is right or wrong, because homosexual sex is not illegal in any of the lands we are part of, and is only a matter of theological debate, and not part of this discussion, which is about whether equal marriage is necessary or homosexual marriage is Biblical.

    We could go off into a tangent and start a discussion which will go to and fro about whether or not homosexual sex is God given or part of God’s plan, or godly, or if it is regarded Biblically as sin or not, which would be a complete distraction from the point of the discussion here.

    The question on this thread is whether the homosexual lobby will make added demands on churches to marry them once the laws are passed which legalise what will be called equal marriage, certainly in UK, where the Government has already pledged to introduce the Equal Marriage Bill before the next election, a Bill which the Labour Party will surely not oppose. So it’s a done deal.

    But the deputy leader of the Coalition has promised there will be no demands on churches to perform homosexual marriages, even though it will be law that couples seeking marriage have to be treated equally regardless of gender or sexual preference.

    How will any church get around this if a gay couple challenges this in court, which they surely will?

    As we see in the two mothers case above, the lesbian attitude is now that it takes one person to start a change, and they are prepared to change law, even in a Catholic nation, despite the wishes of the majority to suit a very very small minority.

    So a mother is created by law, and not because she gives birth and was part of the conception process.

    Do you not see that this is a perversion of nature itself? To over rule nature with a law?

  24. That’s funny, Bones, I thought it was you calling people revolting names, and Greg hurling abuse.

    What have I said about the Catholic Church which isn’t correct, doctrinally? Nothing. Nothing I wouldn’t say in the presence of Christ. Nothing, either I wouldn’t say in regard to defending marriage as between a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others. Nothing! My conscience is clear on both counts.

    You defended error. You did so with ugliness and spite.

    I am not Zorro’s keeper. He has said worse things about me that about you in the past. That’s what he does. Who gives a rip? Do I stand by what I believe, or do I skulk off like a whining pussycat?

    Don’t blame me for what he says about you. He’s responding to your remarks, not mine. Wear your own discomfort, and don’t blame me.

    I’ve done my best to treat your often foul-mouthed objections to what I have said without resorting to same kind of revolting insults you have hurled, choosing rather to use expressive words over vile insults.

    And don’t blame me for what Roundhouse has said to you. I’ve even defended you against some of the things these guys have said, but you have given as much as you have taken, maybe even more, so, again, don’t blame me for your own bad habits.

    You even accuse me of having them as ‘attack dogs”! What kind of man are you to say these things? I have had more battles with Zorro than anyone here. He’s his own animal.

    Roundhouse represents his own views. Says things I would not say.

    I can’t help it if they agree with me on the issues of Roman Catholic error or protecting marriage as we know it. That probably just means they are opposed to your point of view.

    But don’t blame me for what they say as some kind of parting shot. Why couldn’t you just go gracefully?

    Greg’s behaviour over the Catholic and homosexual stuff has been disgusting. That is why he shunted himself off. But at least he apologised for insulting people. You haven’t. You just throw in a stink bomb and dismiss yourself as if you are the affronted party!

    I have no sympathy for you on this, and no apology for you. I said what I said because I believe it. Whether you accept it or not is up to you. But the one slinging language and accusations around was you, even in your leaving comment.

    All I have done is pointed out Catholic error and defend marriage as being between a man and woman.

    Frankly your means of leaving is cowardly and obnoxious, because you can’t even leave gracefully.

    Good bye, then!

  25. Actually, Bones, your last post was just a crock of garbage.

    Who is trying to silence debate?

    Two weeks ago, if you look back, this blog was dying on its feet, with more untreated spam ads than comments. I left it for a week,but no one was commenting, so I added a post which took off with almost 600 hits a day, up from 100 a couple of weeks go.

    It was the emergent church stuff which was stifling debate, because, frankly, no one gives a rip. can’t help that. People are interested in what they’r interested in.

    The marriage debate is current. I set it up and it has certainly encouraged very heated debate and increasing interest.

    You were one of the first to come back once the debate was set, and you, who oppose just about everything I stand for, were one of the most vocal opponents, even bringing an angry edge to the debate, which we let go.

    Greg also waded in with his rugby boots on, and proceeded to kick us around and defend you because he thought I was being rude to you, which was amazing really.

    But stifle debate? That is ridiculous.

    We’ve had Catholics come here, transvestites, homosexuals, who have put their case, and still are, without us being in any way rude or obnoxious. We differ in our views, but discuss them in a controlled manner. We give and take. These posts have encouraged debate, not prevented them. The figures demonstrate that.

    So what the flip are you talking about, stifle debate?

    What is you have been doing for the last two weeks, Bones? You and Greg? And wazza?

    And what has Signposts become?

    What was it? You man you’re proud of what it was?

  26. Steve, you said: “To make the point clear, Alex, we are not, in these posts, discussing whether homosexual sex is right or wrong, because homosexual sex is not illegal in any of the lands we are part of, and is only a matter of theological debate, and not part of this discussion, which is about whether equal marriage is necessary or homosexual marriage is Biblical.”

    I’m not sure that whether “homosexual sex is right or wrong” and whether “equal marriage is necessary or homosexual marriage is Biblical” are mutually exclusive issues. As I said in my first comment, nearly every person who acknowledges an aversion to homosexuality (or same-sex marriage) does so on the basis of what he or she believes the Bible has to say. Hence, it is of critical importance that we do responsible exegesis to the biblical text so that we’re drawing out from the text what is there and not reading into the txt what is not.

    That said, it might also be noted that the scary teaser always seems to be: “Same-sex marriage threatens the rights of those who oppose it.” Actually, any legal protection from discrimination more than “threatens” discriminators — it outlaws their “right” to discriminate. Though protections for churches and clergy are written into the same-sex marriage laws, some still worry that Christians may not be “comfortable” offering services to same-sex couples. Well, are they comfortable offering services to non-Christians, the divorced and remarried, mixed-race couples? Are they comfortable when loving their “enemies” as they love themselves?

    It’s been said that gay couples will take offense if they are not offered the same services traditional couples receive. Well, if the haves take offense when the have-nots get to have, why wouldn’t the have-nots take offense over the haves’ continuing selfishness?

    Perhaps this is something we need to think about too.

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  27. Alex, I’m on record as saying that I welcome the increased marginalisation of fundamental Christians because it means we have to now what we believe in and stand for it even if the authorities oppose it. It sorts out the men from the boys. It could even spell an end to nominal Christianity as an excuse for lazy discipleship.

    Frankly, I have expected these laws to be introduced or changed to suit the aims of homosexual lobbyists for along time.

    I know we disagree on these issues and on the Biblical account, and it may be that we will never find common ground, but I am not surprised by the moves being made globally in regard to the demand by homosexual lobbies to be able to marry in he church of their choice.

    If I were homosexual and in a loving relationship with a man I would obviously think that this was an option I should have, especially i I were not a Christian. One of my other posts states that there is no secular reason for denying ‘equal marriage’, but that those who would like to introduce polygamous marriage would have an even greater claim on purely natural grounds, so why should they be kept out of the equal marriage equation.

    In other words, once the various Bills have been ratified in Parliaments throughout he developed world, what will prevent lobbyists from moving to the next measure, which, as we have seen in Denmark, is already a precedent set.

    The discussion on these threads has been about whether marriage as it stands should remain between a man and a woman. I cannot see where the Bible states otherwise, and on that basis I defend marriage.

  28. Does the Bible state that Slavery should be banned? No? On that basis I defend slavery.

    Does the Bible state that Polygamous marriage should be outlawed? No? On that basis I defend Polygamy.

    There would be a lot of important reforms that could never be made if you demanded that the Bible should explicitly support them.

  29. @wazza

    “Does the Bible state that Slavery should be banned….blah blah ‘look at me, I’m so awesome for sticking up for the poor gay people’ blah blah blah……”

    Same tired old arguments that have nothing to do with the sin of homosexuality at all. But of course, you know that. Obviously you think that by throwing unicorns all over the place we might not notice that your ignorance is showing.

    Ignore scripture all you want wazza. Just don’t ever play the scripture card in any of your arguments on here again, because by ignoring scripture’s stance on this subject you negate any bible-based argument you attempt to present on any other subject on this blog. And the same goes for Greg and God-despiser (Bones) if he ever slinks back here. By ignoring what scripture plainly says everywhere throughout scripture regarding homosexuality and marriage (not just the obvious scriptures but also, you know, how we the church are called the bride and Jesus the bridegroom – modelled of course after God’s perfect design for marriage), any time you three try to use scripture to criticise, instruct or make a point, it will always be tempered and judged by your obvious contempt for the bible.

  30. My last word on this:

    when they met together, they asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”
    He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:6-7 NIV)

    When we attempt to institute a Christian worldview in our culture through lobbying and legislation we make the same mistake as the first disciples when they asked Jesus if he was planning to restore the kingdom to Israel. Jesus responded to their question by highlighting the most important function of the church – to be witnesses; to testify to what they had seen, heard and experienced of Jesus. Forcing people to live according to Christian morality will not save them. Jesus wanted his disciples to witness to the world not control the world. Worldly governments and laws have no bearing on the kingdom of God. Jesus wanted his followers to be filled with power, becoming supernatural examples and witnesses of his radically different kingdom. The restoration of morality in our culture is not a legal problem it is a witnessing problem. Legislating Christian morality is a poor substitute for acts of service, love and compassion. Not only is it a poor substitute, it is an admission by those imposing it that Christianity has no transforming power in our culture. It is an admission of our failure to be witnesses – an admission of our failure to represent Jesus….

    When I discuss this issue with people who are strongly opposed to gay marriage they often justify their position by claiming that they are somehow protecting children. I agree that the best environment for a child to grow up in is with their biological mother and father in a healthy family unit but this does not give me license to discriminate against gay couples any more than it does to discriminate against single parents or divorcees. The public debate surrounding homosexual marriage is cleverly hidden behind this type of propaganda; propaganda that is designed to make the agendas of both sides more palatable. Why can’t people simply be honest? Those who oppose gay marriage because of religious beliefs do so because it is their faith view… it is not fundamentally about protecting children. The protection of children has become a convenient (and dubious) ally to foist a biblical view of morality on our culture. If the Christian agenda was truly about the protection of children we would be more concerned about global financial aid, the obesity epidemic and the sexualisation of children than gay marriage. What about kids in the foster care system? Do we care about them enough to welcome them into our homes? What about child slavery and soldiers? Does the kingdom of God only extend to the problems we see in our country? People don’t oppose gay marriage because of its potential impact on children; they oppose gay marriage because it makes them uncomfortable both theologically and physically. When we hide our prejudice behind the false agenda of protecting children we lose our integrity in the debate.

    A holy mess

    Real Christianity is messy. It is about sharing life with all people, especially those whom our culture isolates and misunderstands – especially people who identify as lesbian, gay, bi-sexual or transgender. When Jesus walked around he was shunned for freely associating with the fringes of society. The religious police felt that this type of behaviour made him unclean but the beautiful, supernatural truth is the complete opposite. Jesus did not become unclean through these interactions, but those who spent time with him were radically healed, transformed and empowered – they became clean.

    Real Christianity is made of daily decisions to lay down our lives, willingly sacrificing for our enemies, protecting those who are isolated, separated and persecuted, giving generously and loving indiscriminately. If we want to stand with Jesus we need to change our attitude to gay marriage. Standing in the crowd, refusing to engage and pretending like this is a trivial issue is unacceptable. If we truly want to be witnesses we need to engage the homosexual community with such great love that they welcome us into their homes like Jesus with Zacchaeus. We need to serve so profoundly that they seek us out at night like Nicodemus or wash our feet with perfume as did the woman in the Pharisees house. We need to put aside our judgements and listen to their story at the city well and share prophecy that compels them to know God. We need to meet them in the streets where people would stone them and stand in front of the stones. We need to show honour, respect and love in such a way that any slander brought against us would be condemned by all. If we truly want to see a change in our culture we should be concerned about our hearts not our laws. The key to seeing transformation in our community and the establishment of God’s kingdom on earth is found in witnessing, not politics.

  31. Roundhouse, Bones may have a totally different opinion to you on many things, but a God-despiser he is not. Just look at the last thing he posted.

    ( Not agreeing with his opinion, or the way he debates – but it’s obvious he loves God).

  32. Jesus did ‘witness’ to an adulteress and a prostitute. After not condemning them and no doubt leaving them with an overwhelming sense of his acceptance and love, he said, ”Go, and sin no more”.

    In all the commendable stuff written in the post above, that last instruction of our Lord got conveniently omitted. It’s the hardest to deliver in today’s all-permissive society, yet the most important.

  33. Q,
    I also don’t agree with Bones being called a God-despiser. That is an aggressive insult towards someone who has a clear social conscience. It also ruins any kind of debate with a person to slander them like this. I disagree with his stance on a number of things, and with the strength of some of his name calling of Roundhouse, who probably responded in kind with this epithet, but that is not always wise, either.

    Zeibart makes a good point about the way Jesus’ last remarks to sinners. He didn’t say to the woman caught in adultery that it was OK for her to continue sinning. He mixed with sinners, but not to condone sin or allow it, rather to help them out of it.

    As He said, “A physician goes to the sick people, not those who are well!” But Hs point is that a physician goes to sick people to help bring the cure, not enter into their sickness.

  34. Bones,
    are you saying that we should never be involved in the decision making procedures of Parliament because we are Christians?

    What did Jesus mean a when he spoke of us being salt, light and savour in the community?

    Voting in Australia is compulsory. Are you suggesting Christians shouldn’t vote?

    Don’t we have a responsibility to bring a Christian perspective to the decision making processes at all levels 0f Government?

    If Christians had always followed the concept of no involvement in the affairs of State, there would not have been a Magna Carta or Westminster System, we would never have had the Bible in our own languages, or the liberty to gather in whatever local church we choose, as well as many other freedoms which have been brought about over the centuries since the Roman occupation of Jerusalem.

    Finally, no one is trying to create legislation about marriage except the minority gay lobby.

    Christians are merely saying they would like it to be retained as it is.

  35. Bones,
    the article you quote goes on to say the following:

    I can understand the desire to make a stand on the issue of gay marriage because of a religious worldview. I can also understand the view that this issue presents a slippery slope into moral decay and the removal of religious freedoms. It is a genuine concern that the agenda for equality could ultimately remove the ability of ministers to choose who they marry and that Christian schools could be forced to employ unbelievers (just to name a few). What is baffling to me is that this makes the church so afraid! Is God somehow limited by laws or persecution? History has shown the propensity for the church to flourish under these types of circumstances. I am suspicious that we are not really afraid of losing our religious freedoms but actually we are afraid of losing the comfort and structure of ritualised Christianity. We want to be able to live out our faith in the security of our nice buildings, comfy chairs and clean clothes.

    This is the point I have consistently made. I don’t agree with what this person says in all things as far as being salt and light to out community, but I have made the very strong point that I welcome the potential separation with the world that will come to Christians through legislation which applies non-biblical principles, and, in some cases, possibly makes Christians liable to prosecution for following Biblical principles, or even preaching the Bible, or holding Christian based seminars, which has already happened in Australia.

    I think this separation is inevitable, and will cause people to really think about whether they want to become a Christian. It may even drive the Church underground.

    But it will cause people to strongly consider whether they are a true believer or not, because they will have to take up their cross daily, and persecution will become the norm rather than the exception.

    You have actually fought me on this. You said there is no separation taking place, no possibility of persecution, the sky would not fall down, the sun is still shining.

    But how will they know we are any different to the world if we do not continue to preach the truth that is in the Bible, live it before them, and stand up for it’s precepts?

    No, we will have be even more vocal, and stand for truth like the Apostles and Disciples of the Book of Acts, and, like them, we will be ostracised for it, but many will come into the kingdom, because God is on the move regardless of what Governments say, or what they legislate for.

  36. wazza2,
    Does the Bible state that Polygamous marriage should be outlawed? No? On that basis I defend Polygamy.

    So what equivalence are you targeting today?

    What is being banned?

    You still haven’t given a definition of marriage. How will yours compare to Jesus’ definition?

    “From the beginning of the creation, God ‘made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’; so then they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.”
    Mark 10:6-9

  37. No, we will have be even more vocal, and stand for truth like the Apostles and Disciples of the Book of Acts

    I can’t resist that. The Apostles witnessed to the risen Jesus. It’s in all their speeches. For that they were persecuted. They didn’t preach political change or even try to change Judaic or pagan political structures. The silversmiths threw Paul out because people were converting to Christianity, not because Paul was lobbying to the general population that they shouldn’t buy idols.

    The early Church’s mission was to witness to the risen Jesus and proclaim Christ crucified. They weren’t distracted from that mission by being martyrs for social and moral change.

  38. The debate about Christians and politics is worth discussion.

    In Japan, it was mainly the efforts and influence of Christians that outlawed child prostitution. Before that not many people were worried about the rights of girls from poor families. But Christians in the political realm changed that. Christianity was seen as having a superior morality. And regardless of some Christian’s defense of slavery in the south in the US, WIlliam Wilberforce spent decades i the political arena. I think it’s perfectly fine for Christians to vote according to their conscience. Everybody in this country votes according to how they feel. There are people who vote for gay marriage even though they are not personally gay but believe gays should have those rights – BUT, those people do not see homosexual activity as “sin” or having a negative effect on society. But if they did, they’d no doubt vote against it.

    Different example – if they were a referendum tomorrow about changing the obscenity laws -so anything would be allowed on TV.

    Young men would predominantly vote for it. Muslims would vote against it. Some atheist feminists would vote for, and some would be against. And many people would be for it because they think everyone should have the right to watch anything and if the prudes don’t like it they can change the channel. But others who have no religious affiliation would be against it saying it’s filth and will just make society more dangerous and harder to bring up children.

    So Christians? How would we vote? Do we have to worry about inflicting our morals or our religion on a secular society? I say no.

    So, it’s not good or fair for everyone to have a voice in the running of the country – whether they are muslims, wiccans, sexual libertarians, or average joes who are a it of everything – but not Christians.

    I believe – that homosexual marriage is not biblical, or good for a society. So, I see nothing wrong with voicing that opinion or voting in that way.

    The other problem then is the way this is being done in the US. First they tried to say that the majority are for it (that society had evolved) so it’s put to the vote. But what happens when they lose? They then argue that the majority aren’t always right, and that majority opinion shouldn’t determine morality (sounding very much like Christians…). So, then bypassing the will of the people, the efforts are directed at going to the supreme court to argue about human rights. But then what does it come down to? Is there some kind of absolute truth that supreme courts judges in their knowledge and wisdom possess? No – there are liberal-leaning and conservative leaning supreme court judges!! You’d think the best legal brains in the country would have the same opinion wouldn’t you – that it was beyond opinion. But it’s obviously not – which is why elections are so important because the appointment of supreme court judges of the same political leaning can change a country for decades.

    So that’s the way I see it. I appreciate that many people have much more knowledge of hebrew and greek than I do, but nobody has convinced me yet that homosexual marriage would have been endorsed or supported by Moses, David, Jesus or Paul.

    But finally, I understand Bones’s approach of leaving legislation and political maneuvering, and sticking to the business of preaching the gospel and changing lives. I think that’s a decent argument, and many people who love God and are smarter than i hold to that.

    But lately, I’ve been thinking that if Christians took their spiritual lives as seriously and lived with the same passion as the LGBT lobbyists, it would be a completely different world.

  39. I can understand you all disliking my calling Bones “God-despiser”, but let me draw your attention to Proverbs 4:2 “He who walks in his uprightness fears the Lord, But he who is perverse in his ways despises Him.” I am not using the name as an insult, but as a statement of truth. Bones’ disdain for the truth written in the bible shows his obvious disdain for the written word of God, and so by extension his disdain, or despising of the one who authored the bible. He was using scripture as a bludgeon to whack us over our heads, trying to somehow prove how awful God is, or was. Is that not being perverse in his ways? Is not dragging out scriptures specifically to show us how much he believes God is a b*****d showing disdain for God? I was attempting to show Bones how much of a shaky, dangerous position he was taking, taking on the King of Kings and His glorious word by reducing it to some spurious insults and as ammunition to somehow prove to those of us who believe in His word that we are religious bigots trapped in the middle ages. Bone’s conduct is and was offensive, and perverse in his ways, therefore, according to Proverbs 4:2, Bones is a God-despiser.

    @Q, copying and pasting a few passages from elsewhere that contain scripture doesn’t make him suddenly a Christian. We know them by their fruits, and as I have stated many times, Bone’s fruit is rotten to the core.

  40. Q, adultery is a sin, is not illegal and adulterers are free to marry.

    Would you like to change that law as well?

  41. ”But lately, I’ve been thinking that if Christians took their spiritual lives as seriously and lived with the same passion as the LGBT lobbyists, it would be a completely different world.”

    I agree wholeheartedly Q. If Christians were as passionate about Christ as they were their football team, we might be the majority voice in the nation rather than being perceived as an irrelevant bunch of bigots. Funny thing is that to label a Christian a ‘bigot’ you have to call God the same. He CHOSE Israel. Imagine in today’s western, liberal society if God hand-picked a tiny nation to represent him. The UN would be up in arms (literally if it could ever get it’s military sh1t in one sock) at the ‘exclusive, bigoted, racist’ nature of God.

    But there we have it, and it’s the same thing today. Jesus offers new life to those who choose him, and not to all (much as the liberal Christian lobby would love to promote an all-inclusive Christian salvation message to assuage this spirit of the age).

    Back to your point on Christians in politics, it was clear that from Paul’s time to today, Christians have a moral obligation to display their faith in whatever forum they can, be that business, politics, local councils, sports, military service – you name it, we should affect it. Paul took his arguments straight to the centre of Greek thinking and debate, the Areopagus. In the days when religion and state intertwined, he was affecting their very way of life. Now that state and religion are mutually exclusive in most Christian-based countries (different for Sharia law ruled Muslim nations), it is seen as all but impossible to use scripture and Christian principles to sway political decisions. BUT, that shouldn’t stop the person motivated to ‘good works’ through the Holy Spirit from undertaking those deeds in the political arena.

    Those who hold to NT Spirit-led lives should shout all the louder at the constant erosion of Christian-based society by the squawking shrill cries of the secular liberal humanists, whose social agenda, when stripped back, is utterly selfish and foul. Oh, and be prepared to be thoroughly persecuted and vilified for it. The coming times will certainly sift God’s wheat from the ‘believe-anything-as-long-as-it’s-inoffensive-to-minorities etc’ chaff.

  42. @Steve : You still haven’t given a definition of marriage. How will yours compare to Jesus’ definition?

    “From the beginning of the creation, God ‘made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’; so then they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.”
    Mark 10:6-9

    Thats not Jesus’ definition of marriage, it was part of his argument against divorce. I find it rather strange that people use this passage to argue against homosexual unions, but then are able to effectively ignore the point that Jesus was making. Ie. “..what God has joined together, let not man separate”. In Pentecostal congregations before the 70’s if you got divorced you either left the fellowship or remained with indefinite pariah status. The ACC has now formally passed a policy on divorce which allows it in some cases, and hence remarriage in the church. Even the Australian Pentecostal churches have made concessions to social reality in this area, and although it does happen that some fringe people voice disapproval it is generally a non-issue and thought to be a personal matter.

    If the fundamentalists really were interested in protecting the institution of marriage from sin as defined by a strict literal reading of Jesus’ words, they would be speaking out against “no-fault” divorce and demonstrating outside registry offices when one of the partners had been previously married. Why be so silent on this issue when a literal reading of Jesus’ words seems to be so against it? Why the difference now?

    Queue the three amigos with their “God-despiser”, “You dont have a right to quote the Bible” type comments, but these types of ad-hominem attacks just underscore the point that you are being inconsistent and you dont have an answer for why you are being inconsistent.

    I implore you all to look deeper and question why.

  43. Paul took his arguments straight to the centre of Greek thinking and debate, the Areopagus. In the days when religion and state intertwined, he was affecting their very way of life.

    Paul pointed the Greek philosophers to God. Again he was not championing moral legislation in a society which was totally depraved. He didn’t shout against temple prostitution for example.

    There was nothing in Roman society which barred you from marrying whoever you wanted. Marriage was not a state issue. Nero himself married two males and even a horse(!), and there is documented evidence of same sex weddings in Rome in the first century.

    This seems an odd issue on which to die for. There are plenty of other issues ailing society which Christians need to think about how they can contribute to solving and be salt and light.. At a recent seminar I was told that within 5 years the majority of the kids I teach will be from divorced families ie the nuclear family will be the minority.

    Now what the consequences of that are going to be socially and long term and how Christians can contribute I have no idea but it is a reality. But sitting around saying how bad society is achieves nothing.

    You can shout as loud as you want, the proof is in the pudding. I think the world (and the West is post-Christian) is tired of being shouted at. Christians need to show they are the salt and light of the Earth, not just shout it out.

    And do we measure our passion for Christ on the loudness of our shouting?

  44. OK, when saying ‘shouting’ I mean not becoming an inconsequential, drowned out voice in a sea of counter-Christiananity.

  45. “And do we measure our passion for Christ on the loudness of our shouting?”

    James 1:20

    Amplified Bible (AMP)

    20 For man’s anger does not promote the righteousness God [wishes and requires].

  46. btw I’m not saying Christians can’t have a voice or be political. The political world of Modern Western society is nothing like Imperial Rome or Occupied Judea where really no one had a voice. And it was only when our friend Constantine started giving churches privileges that Christians had any say in political matters.

    But there are reasons why Christian political parties in Australia like the Christian Democratic Party and Family First have been so ineffectual and irrelevant and seen as basket cases. A belief rightly held about the CDP. No party is going to succeed based upon a platform of pure moral issues. The Greens have superceded both parties in terms of popularity and the debate on climate change and economics is far more important to the electorate than stopping gays getting married.

  47. Wazza2,
    your argument is so nonsensical it is hardly worth commenting on it. Don’t you think Jesus’ clarification of marriage covers all eventualities that are not, otherwise, marriage? I can’t believe you’d sidestep the way you did to even change the subject. But you did!

    Bones,
    no one is trying to stop anyone getting married, only to defend and maintain marriage as it is.

  48. Rev Ian Paisley has done great things for Northern Ireland over the years and would all the glory to God, despite making enemies along the way. Taking a stand is the first issue, and one which so many in today’s society, Christian or otherwise, are loathe to do. The woman who was denied entry to a 3am night bus because she was short 20p, and then raped and violently assaulted as she waited for a lift home, is a very sad case in point that highlights the insular malaise most people live in. Highly vociferous minorities, however, tend to make progress out of proportion to their societal need.

  49. I cant believe you would use Jesus’ words out of context to apply to something He wasnt talking about, while ignoring the key message He actually was giving.

    I havent changed the subject, you gave the quote. I’m pointing out what He was talking about.

    “Don’t you think Jesus’ clarification of marriage covers all eventualities..”

    Well, no. “God made them male and female” That dosent actually cover all the eventualities… but for the purpose of brevity and rhetorical effect Jesus didnt say “God made them male and female, and some people who are intersex, some are hemaphrodite – having both types of sexual organs. Still others are genetically male while being outwardly in all respects female – they may not know that they are actually genetically male. Some others have XXY chromosomes, so in some sense are both male and female. …”

    Whilst this would be scientifically accurate, it would not flow well as a moral or spiritual statement. And since it would only apply to a small percentage of people, Jesus probably didnt feel the need to give every exception. He probably thought that since the Father would send the Holy Spirit we could work out all the exceptions for ourselves. Perhaps He regrets that decision.

  50. Yes, I suppose the fact that Paisley had to be dragged kicking and screaming to the negotiating table to come up with some sort of solution to the Troubles in Northern Ireland says something about the man. He basically was threatened by Blair that the Brits would pull out.

    Paisley is a curious example of the sectarian past like when Catholics were denied selection to the Australian Cricket team.

    It’s ironic that your big friend in this will be none other than the Catholic Church.

  51. Zeibert, you are surely not implying that the bus driver should have let the woman on the bus when she didnt have the required fare???? Talk about a slippery slope – how much is good enough? 40p less? A pound? Pretty soon you’d have to make it free and all the low-life of society would be riding around on the bus!!! And then what would you have? Socialism!! thats what!!! I tell you sonny, we didnt win the war by discounting bus fares!!! Now get off my lawn.

  52. “Bones may have a totally different opinion to you on many things, but a God-despiser he is not. Just look at the last thing he posted.

    ( Not agreeing with his opinion, or the way he debates – but it’s obvious he loves God).”

    It is indeed obvious that Bones loves God. Unfortunately, the God with whom he is so infatuated is a construct entirely of his own imagination, rather than the one true God.

    The deepest desire of Bones’ heart is to worship a God who will bend to his will, rather than the other way round. Bones’ desire has been amply satisfied – along with leaness of soul, which is clearly demonstrated by his visceral dislike of and naked contempt for those who cleave to God in truth – and particularly those who love, trust and abide in God’s inerrant word, and who can rightly divide it.

    Bones’ bastardised theology is a curious admixture, an altogether bizarre synthesis of orthodox, heterodox and science-as-an-idol, that is informed by traditions and teachings of men and glued together by those parts of scripture that happen to suit (sometimes after they have been tweaked a little, sometimes when they have been mangled beyond recognition, often when they are taken out of context, and always without any understanding of the true spirit and intent of the Bible in its entirety). All of this comes from a man who sees himself as having above-average intelligence – and who purports to be a teacher, no less. And he wonders why he has no credibility. Truly risible stuff.

  53. “From the beginning of the creation, God ‘made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife […]”

    “That’s not Jesus’ definition of marriage, it was part of his argument against divorce.”

    Only if you can’t read. Tell you what: you can set Jesus straight on what marriage *really* is when you front him at the judgement. (Good luck with that).

    “If the fundamentalists really were interested in protecting the institution of marriage […]”

    You have a highly-inflated idea of your own importance. Marriage is exactly what God made it, and it doesn’t matter you or anyone else says or does or thinks about the matter. The government can pass whatever legislation they want, and churches can stage ceremonies and give their blessings if they so desire, but homosexuals will only ever be married in name, they will *never* be married in the sight of God – which is, of course, the one thing that counts.

    But you keep on with your huffing and puffing, your saccharine sentimentality, your broad-minded tolerance, your warm and fuzzy inclusiveness, and your buckets of syrupy nonsense. It’s not truth – it’s not now, and it never will be.

  54. zeibart,

    There is such thing as ‘self-righteous anger’ zeibart,expressed by man.That doesn’t come from GOD!

  55. Are you looking for a lecture on completely mis-placed humour as well all the rest wassa2?

  56. @ Wazza.
    “If the fundamentalists really were interested in protecting the institution of marriage from sin as defined by a strict literal reading of Jesus’ words, they would be speaking out against “no-fault” divorce”

    Good point. All I can say is that back in the day, I’d say churches opposed it. From memory …I think it was Mr Whitlam that brought that in, and it indeed led to a spike in divorces. I don’T think the US or Australia has recovered from the huge increase in divorce. I’d say the church think that battle has been long lost. Once laws come in and become accepted, there’s no going back. Same with standards. I’m old enough to remember it being pretty outrageous if people went away for a “dirty weekend”, and it’s cute to watch Basil Fawlty annoyed that an unmarried couple are staying the night.

    You make a valid point. I’d say that with all the divorce, conservatives don’t think legalizing gay marriages is going to help anything.

    And yeah, there is no shortage of aggression here. But, don’t you find that everywhere? I can’t watch a youtube video without someone saying that someone else sings it better, and then they start bashing the other person’s country. Meekness and gentleness aren’t really in fashion these days.

  57. @Bones

    “Q, adultery is a sin, is not illegal and adulterers are free to marry.
    Would you like to change that law as well?”

    I was actually wondering if you’d ask that. Can I get back to you on it?

    Your history lesson re Rome has piqued my interest too. Me thinks it would be worth me reading up on whether there was such a thing as political activism in the first three centuries.

    I really like the history stuff you throw into comments btw. I learn stuff, but also often starts me off on some study.

    Thanks

  58. Just on Steve’s original post as well as the British adoption services. Where organisations get government funding there is a requirement that they meet government standards.

    This is most evident in Private schools who are not to teach creationism over evolution as evolution is part of the school curriculum whereas creationism isn’t. To receive government funding schools must teach the National curriculum.

    The NSW board of studies spokeswoman said: “Parents are entitled to choose schools for their children that support their own beliefs. However, it has been repeatedly made clear to faith-based and other schools that creationism is not part of the mandatory science curriculum, cannot take the place of any part of the mandatory science curriculum, and will not be assessed in the mandatory School Certificate science test.”

    http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/school-in-clear-over-teaching-creation/2008/12/08/1228584743350.html

  59. JUDE 1: 5 I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. 6And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. 7Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.

  60. “Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them […] suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”

    Poof…and they were gone.

  61. There is very little consensus to be had on this subject. As long as each one here has examined himself with reference to the scriptures and their Spirit inspiration, and is at peace in their conscience, let Jesus be the judge, if indeed he sees it a worthy matter what view we held.

    Our sole duty in life is to present Jesus more and more clearly to those around us. When they are in his presence, it’s between them and Christ what happens next; we are now excused and should never judge the result; certainly not become like Jonah in his grumpiness at the Lord’s compassion.

  62. I’m sure that Jude was referring to the unions between angels and humans as ‘strange flesh’, not homosexuality.

  63. Sodomy (/ˈsɒdəmi/) refers to non-penile/vaginal copulation-like acts, such as oral or anal sex, or sex between a person and an animal.[1] The word is derived from the story of Sodom and Gomorrah in chapters 18 and 19 of the Book of Genesis in the Bible.[1] So-called “sodomy laws” in many countries criminalized not only these behaviors, but other disfavored sexual activities as well, but in the Western world, many of these laws have been overturned, or are not routinely enforced.

  64. Zeibart, the strange flesh is actually pinpointed as the sexual acts of the men of Sodom and Gomorra. And it was the result of constant misdemeanours, not just a one-off.

    wazza2,
    I’m not sure what it’s going to take for you to admit that what Jesus was talking about was God’s original plan for marriage, from ‘the beginning of creation’, which is long before the divorce issue of the Pharisees was even thought of.

    The reason the scripture is placed in inverted commas is because it references Genesis, where Adam declares what marriage is.

    In other words, Jesus ratifies for us what marriage is, and confirms it has been so since the beginning of creation, that it remains so today, and therefore gives us a Biblical definition, regardless of whether he is specifically calling the lawyers out for their appeal to divorce.

    Did you think, for some strange reason, that you were dealing with people who don’t actually know what the Bible says about these things?

    I don’t get you at all.

    You’re either a massive stirrer, or you really don’t have a clue how to read the Bible.

  65. Our sole duty in life is to present Jesus more and more clearly to those around us.

    Does that not include preaching, teaching warning and admonishing people, and especially revealing God’s will as written in the Word of God?

    Are we not called to represent the words of Jesus in regard to what marriage is?

    Are we not called to tell people what sin is and how to be set free form it?

    What exactly is the gospel message if it doesn’t reveal God’s will for mankind?

  66. Steve, my argument has been made before, it is not something I have just made up. I quote:


    They reject the argument that Jesus established an exclusive norm for heterosexual marriage in his comments about marriage in Mark 10:6-9.  He was responding to a direct question about the permanence of marriage, not making a philosophical statement about sexual differences and about the idea that human wholeness requires the merging of two incomplete halves.  As did Paul, Jesus spoke positively about singleness with no hint that single people were not whole human beings (109).

    Did you think I am just commenting for the sake of it? Did you think I don’t also take the Bible seriously and thoughtfully?

    Do you do any serious study of alternate views on this topic? Do you think an apology is in order?

    http://peacetheology.net/homosexuality/the-homosexuality-debate-two-streams-of-biblical-interpretation/

  67. I think, then, if you are serious, you are missing the fundamental point of marriage, that it is between a man and woman.

    It goes back to Genesis, to the Garden of Eden, to God’s declaration that it is not good for a man to be alone. So he made woman from his own flesh, and the two became joined as one flesh. How? Through consummation, through sexual intercourse.

    Jesus says, ‘from the beginning of the creation’, giving the time span, and also confirming the declaration, ratifying the marriage covenant as between a man and woman. He mentions man and woman, male and female.

    He does not, in any place, interpret this to possibly mean that marriage could be between a man and a man, or a woman and a woman.

    There is no apology required for truth.

  68. The apology is required for this statement:

    You’re either a massive stirrer, or you really don’t have a clue how to read the Bible

    This dismisses not only myself but the view of many mainstream christians and theologians as totally unworthy of consideration. It lowers the standard of discourse on this blog and is a poor examle to others.

  69. Marriage, to God, is essential to human life. We, male an female, are carriers of seed. Without male seed the female ova cannot be germinated.

    To carry this out, God gave the man and woman complimentary sexual organs. He also gave us the sacred institution of marriage, so that we could carry out the process of procreation form within both a safe and a guarded covenant relationship, which, in the human being, lasts until one passes away.

    The point of marriage is to provide a secure family environment for the nurture of the resultant offspring.

    In the last 50 years, the humanistic thinking of a gathering majority has lost sight of what marriage is. In fact, since the sixties, de facto relationships have begun to overtake marriage vows, and in the last twenty years, same-sex relationships have been promoted as normal.

    This is not new. The Greeks were known for homosexual practices, even having homosexual temple prostitutes, including boys.

    But we have to consider whether God, when he was factoring in procreation and marriage as his device for multiplication and increase, ever made a decision that men should have sex with men, or women with women.

    I happen to think that God is far more pragmatic than that. I’m sure he understood it would happen, because people would have a free will and sometimes it would rebel against what he considered rational behaviour.

    He made it clear, when letting his chosen nation, Israel, know what he expected form them, that men having sex with men was not something he could abide. He did this because he knew that Israel would come into contact with nations where this was accepted practice, Sodom and Gomorra obviously being one of them.

    He made an example of them so that future generations from Abraham onwards would be in no doubt that extreme licentiousness was not acceptable with him.

    He knew Abraham would pass on the information he gained to future generations. That is why Abraham was a witness to what happened to the Dead Sea cities.

    You won’t find a single instance where a man had sex with a man in the Bible, Old or New Testaments, and lived. Ditto with women having sex with women.

    I find it extraordinary that anyone who is a serious Bible scholar or student could possibly think that God could ever sanctify a sexual union between a same-sex couple.

  70. @ wazza2 – would be interesting to hear your definition of “mainstream” Christians, would that be another name for liberal?

    Spiritual consequences of homosexuality (from carm.org)

    “In Romans 1 we see what appears to be a unique judgment upon the hearts and minds of homosexuals.

    “For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error,” (Rom. 1:26-27).

    These two verses are a condemnation of homosexual practice. But notice that within them there is a declaration that God gives people over to the depravity of their hearts and minds when they’re involved with homosexuality. I know of no other sin mentioned in Scripture where it says the sinners are given over to it.

    Furthermore, not only are they given over to their sins (a type of judgment), but the result of this is that then they want to promote their sin to others.

    “And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; and, although they know the ordinance of God, THAT THOSE WHO PRACTICE SUCH THINGS ARE WORTHY OF DEATH, THEY NOT ONLY DO THE SAME, BUT ALSO GIVE HEARTY APPROVAL TO THOSE WHO PRACTICE THEM” (Rom. 1:28-32).

    This is exactly what we see in the homosexual agenda with its heavy-handed and persistent promotion in society, schools, movies, TV, internet, literature, and politics. As Christians, we need to be cognizant of the spiritual consequence and its effect on the material world. We need to pray for them and their deliverance from this great sin. Also, we Christians cannot remain isolated from the rising tide of homosexual social reconstruction. We need to take a stand against it so that we might promote the righteousness of God, inform sinners of the need to repent.” Matt Slick

    As one who is always saying “context, context, context”, I must admit I had not put those verses (26-32) in complete context.

  71. “Are we not called to tell people what sin is and how to be set free form it?”

    Good question. Given the amount of people I know who are living together outside of marriage, I’d have a pretty tough social, family and work life if I told people that fornication was sin.

    (not an argument -just thinking aloud)

  72. @Q

    Which position do you take? I ask this because you have posted some good stuff on the biblical stance, but then seem to be also wavering on the side of God-despiser, Greg and wazza. I cannot get a handle on what you actually believe. I understand your desire for harmony here, but we cannot maintain harmony by agreeing with everything everyone says, especially on a subject so serious to God like this one. Sooner or later we need to take sides, even if that means ruffling a few feathers. I am not expecting you to be as brash as I am (disclaimer: I am not deliberately being brash, it just comes from a point of complete exasperation at the blindness of these three), but, come on man, grow some kahoonas and express an opinion that is yours, without fear of being called vile names from these three!

  73. I have Q, and you say some great things, but I still can’t work out where you really stand!

  74. I’m even more conservative than Steve. But I’ve learned that people can have a completely different opinion than me and still love God and be intelligent.

    But in case you missed it.
    1. I believe that sex outside of marriage is sin.
    2. I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman.
    3.. I believe that gay marriage is absurd – both from a biblical and secular point of view.
    4. I am opposed to the legalization of gay marriage.
    5. I don’t believe sex-change operations should be allowed.
    5. I am even opposed to the legal recognition of gay civil unions.

    So, I probably have the most conservative views of anyone. I’ve stated the above before. Probably because I’ve stated the above before several times, I sometimes don’t comment for a long time – then I come out and post too much

    Not sure why you don’t think I have a position.

    Maybe you’ve missed some of my posts. I’ve had a lot of objections come my way from Wazza and Bones.

    I think Wazza, Bones and Greg are smart people (no doubt smarter than I am – which isn’t really that much of a compliment), who love God and have searched and are searching for the truth.

    So, I’ve given my opinion, but I’m not really interested in being on a “side”, and actually that usually takes more guts in life than being on a side.

    As for being called vile names, I can handle that. In fact, go ahead and call me a vile name! 🙂

    Okay, just looked over some posts. Maybe because I said “good point” and “valid point” to Wazza, and said I’d get back to Bones on something that you can’t work out my position?

    I simply thought some of Wazza’s points were good and valid, and thought that Bone’s question deserved more than a simple response.

    I often forget who says what – but I don’t think any of the people here are morons, idiots or God-despisers. Not anymore than I am anyway.

    Okay, here’s a hint to my personality. I’m the kind of guy who can watch a sports game, be delirious that my team won, but still think that the other team played well, and that my team may have gotten some lucky penalties. -and applaud brilliant play by the other team.
    And I’m not interested in getting into a post-match brawl.

    Maybe I’m getting old and I know too many good people who hold completely different beliefs. I’ve also hurt too many people in my time.

  75. Oh, and I haven’t done any great posts yet. I’d actually like to delete all of them and start again.

  76. Q,

    Come on over and join us on the Dark Side.

    There is no escape. You do not yet realise your importance. You have only begun to discover the power of reason. Join us and you will complete your training as a disciple. With our combined strength, we can end this destructive conflict and bring order to the galaxy.

    If you only knew the power of reason and rationality.

    There is one thing I want you know to know:

    I am your father.

    Search your feelings you know it to be true.

    Bones (Sith Lord and all round bad guy)

    Something, something…Dark Side.

  77. Oh good grief, this is all turning out like a local rugby derby: knock seven bells out of each other and then cheer each other off and jump in the same bath!

  78. The Valley of Dry Bones
    Ezekiel 37:1-10 – The Valley of Dry Bones

    1 The hand of the Lord was on me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. 2 He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry. 3 He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?”3 I said, “Sovereign Lord, you alone know.”

    4 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! 5 This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. 6 I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.”

  79. eyes – Men do not reject the Bible because it contradicts itself, but because it contradicts them. – E. Paul Hovey

  80. “jump in the same bath!
    I assume you mean that we’re all clothed.
    Not that there’s anything wrong with it…”

    I have some interesting Japanese bath stories to tell you guys if we ever get together for a few beers…. 🙂

  81. Still surprised that Roundhouse and Justine didn’t know where I stood on the gay issue….

    Wazza and Bones knew. Help me out Roundhouse. What did I say that made you not know?

  82. wazza2,
    The apology is required for this statement:

    You’re either a massive stirrer, or you really don’t have a clue how to read the Bible

    This dismisses not only myself but the view of many mainstream christians and theologians as totally unworthy of consideration. It lowers the standard of discourse on this blog and is a poor examle to others.

    Yes, I’m sorry I wasn’t a bit stronger.

    You think that dismissing error is a bad thing? No fair?

    You mean like when Jesus dismissed the error of divorce when he dealt with the lawyers? he gave them the actual definition of marriage and reminded them that it was never God’s intention for it to be either dissolved or interfered with.

    Yet you contrive to dismiss Jesus, not people like you who produce error, but Jesu Himself with your parody of Bible interpretation.

    And Paul, What of Paul’s dismissal of the Judaisers, who preached another gospel, which he called, twice, anathema, cursed!

    Do you think he cared much if he hurt their little feelings for pointing out their crass error?

    I don’t think so.

    Lowers the standard of discourse? What standard is that? Yours?

  83. And bravo to the Anglican Church which was front page news on the Metro Newspaper (free on every Tube train in London) this morning, declaring that they would have to shut down marriage ceremonies in their churches if Cameron brings in the Equal Marriage Bill, and that it is wrong that the Bill is being hurried through with only three month’s debate.

    Hurrah for the Church of England! May they thrive and multiply in their obvious defence of traditional marriage and open defiance of the preposterous ‘Equal’ Marriage Bill.

    As I said, there will be consequences.

    From the Telegraph:
    The Church of England has objected to the UK government’s proposal to permit gay marriages.

    The Church says in a document that its historic understanding of marriage is that it is a union of a man and a woman.

    The document, released today, argued that gay couples in the UK could already enjoy many of the legal benefits of marriage through civil partnerships, which were introduced in 2005.

    About a fourth of weddings in England take place in Church of England churches, which are legally obligated to provide a marriage service for any resident of a local parish, regardless of church membership.

  84. Background on the position of the Church

    The Church of England is committed to the traditional understanding of the institution of marriage as being between one man and one woman.

    The Church of England supports the way civil partnerships offer same-sex couples equal rights and responsibilities to married heterosexual couples. Opening marriage to same-sex couples would confer few if any new legal rights on the part of those already in a civil partnership, yet would require multiple changes to law, with the definition of marriage having to change for everyone.

    The issue of whether marriage should be redefined to include those of the same-sex is a more complicated picture than has been painted. Arguments that suggest ‘religious marriage’ is separate and different from ‘civil marriage’, and will not be affected by the proposed redefinition, misunderstand the legal nature of marriage in this country. They mistake the form of the ceremony for the institution itself.

    Currently, the legal institution of marriage into which people enter is the same whether they marry using a civil or a religious form of ceremony. And arguments that seek to treat ‘religious marriage’ as being a different institution fail to recognise the enduring place of the established church in providing marriages that have full state recognition. The Church of England will continue to argue against changing the definition of marriage, which has supported society for so long.

    http://www.churchofengland.org/our-views/marriage,-family-and-sexuality-issues/same-sex-marriage.aspx

  85. Is Dr Rowan Williams an Evangelical?

    I wonder if David Cameron listens to his own words

    David Cameron last night called on the Archbishop of Canterbury to lead a return to the ‘moral code’ of the Bible.

    In a highly personal speech about faith, the Prime Minister accused Dr Rowan Williams of failing to speak ‘to the whole nation’ when he criticised Government austerity policies and expressed sympathy with the summer rioters.

    Mr Cameron declared Britain ‘a Christian country’ and said politicians and churchmen should not be afraid to say so.

    He warned that a failure to ‘stand up and defend’ the values and morals taught by the Bible helped spark the riots and fuelled terrorism.

    At Christ Church Cathedral in Oxford, where Dr Williams used to teach, Mr Cameron said the time has come for public figures to teach ‘right from wrong’, and questioned whether the Church of England has done enough to defend those values in the face of the ‘moral neutrality’ that pervades modern life.

    https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2011/12/19/uk-pm-slams-archbishop-over-pc-values/

    It seems His Grace is on the good side whereas Cameron is prepared to use religion for his own political ends.

  86. Drip, drip, drip…

    Can you see the kind of unnecessary, unkind pressure anyone associated with a Christian perspective is coming under right now?

    It’s like the homosexual lobby is saying, give us our rights or we will shut you down, as if their rights are the only rights and their opinion is the only correct opinion.

    I’m only sad that Gloria Jeans felt so pressured that they were unable to find the courage to stand up to these bullies.

    The perverse, intimidating anger is in the commentary in response to the following:

    Hi Mike and Facebook followers,

    We’ve seen all your comments and feel that it is important to get in touch and put the facts on record.

    Yes, Gloria Jean’s Coffees did provide a donation to the Australian Christian Lobby in 2010, in support of the prime ministerial debate only. This was a once off donation during the time of the election.

    What’s more, it is important to reiterate that we are not religiously affiliated or affiliated to any other beliefs or preferences, including Hillsong. By the same token, nor do we discriminate against others based on their beliefs or preferences. We are proud of our culture of equality and embrace diversity across our entire business.

    The religious affiliation and preferences of some our management, Franchise Partners or Team Members, is their personal choice and bears no relevance to the way that our business runs day to day.

    Today, our sponsorship of many humanitarian projects is based on giving back to the communities who have helped us become the brand we are today. It is through With Heart, a Gloria Jean’s Coffees International Foundation, that we support both local and international projects including Red Cross, in local and global disaster appeals, as well as Special Olympics Australia, Variety, the children’s charity, and R U OK? Day.

    We are, as always, very happy to provide any further information, so shoot us an email to feedback@gloriajeanscoffees.com.au.

    Thanks, Team Gloria Jean’s Coffees

  87. The problem with Evangelicals is that they aren’t evangelical any more …

    they have stopped reading their Bibles.

    Liberals, on the other hand, do actually read their Bibles, which is why they are winning the arguments … even though their conclusions may be wrong.

    And before you say “How can liberals be winning the arguments?”

    The evidence is clear. The Church, as a whole, is far more liberal than it ever was. Some churches may still be very conservative, but I am looking at the whole picture.

    The undeniable downside to the picture is that also, as a whole, the Church in the west is in decline. Fewer numbers stick around.

    Why? I think that the old certainties have gone. Regardless of whether this is a good or bad thing, it is certainly true that human beings prefer things to be black and white rather than shades of gray.

    But for those that have stayed in the church, perhaps we prefer shades of gray so that no one is right … which means no one is ever wrong. No one to tell me my lifestyle is wrong … that I should stop watching TV programs with hot female actresses.

    No one to tell me to stop hanging around certain parts of town.

    No one to tell me to not get into debt to fund a lifestyle beyond my means.

    No one to tell me to stop looking at certain stuff on the internet.
    (I must stop checking out the Apple Store!)

    We don’t like to be told that sin is still sin. I know I don’t.

    But when I read the Bible, when I read what Jesus said and did, he told people off for being hypocrites and he showed people up in their sins. The Sermon on the Mount isn’t an impossible dream with the Holy Spirit empowering us … Jesus expects us to live it out, just like he did.

    We have no excuses.

    Now … that is not a liberal position to take, is it?

    Shalom

  88. Can you see the kind of unnecessary, unkind pressure anyone associated with a Christian perspective is coming under right now?

    Gloria Jeans can donate their money to whoever they want whether it’s the KKK, the ACL or Hillsong.

    Now who are the companies donating to the dreaded ‘Gay Agenda’?

  89. The evidence is clear. The Church, as a whole, is far more liberal than it ever was. Some churches may still be very conservative, but I am looking at the whole picture.

    Yes. My grandmother wore a hat to church until the day she died. Some churches still refuse women preaching/teaching in church. The Apostolics still have men and women on separate sides of the Church.

    You might have to look to the Catholics and the Anglo-Catholics who are preserving their traditions and fighting modernity.

  90. Australia is an island continent although I’ve always wanted to go to Tasmania.

    I have a feeling that this island will meet your needs.

  91. ‘Gays should all just go and live on an Island.’

    LIFE FINDS A WAY

    Jurasic park saying ,i know.

    However ,are we not seeing the use of technology to reproduce in this day and age.
    Stem cells are biological cells found in all multicellular organisms, that can divide (through mitosis) and differentiate into diverse specialized cell types and can self-renew to produce more stem cells.
    Just wait until the word work means,” DO YOU HAVE AN ANDROID “

  92. I don’t know any gay people except the ones I read about in the news. But I’m sure they’d all be happy living together on an island somewhere.

  93. Gay people are sinners like every one else. Are they my enemy? If so, (and I don’t) what does the Bible say about my enemies?

    I need to love them, pray for them, bless them, do good for them.

    Nothing about sending your enemies on an island somewhere.

    Then I am salt of the Earth, light in the darkness, a child of our Father in heaven.

    Matthew 5:43-44
    43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor[i] and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven.

    Romans 12:14
    Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.

    17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”[d] says the Lord. 20 On the contrary:

    “If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
    if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
    In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”[e]

    21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

  94. Bones, did you read the news today?

    THE Salvation Army is facing a backlash after its online anti-homosexuality and gay marriage stance sparked a social media boycott campaign.
    Gay pop star Darren Hayes – the face of ’90s hit machine Savage Garden and a mentor on The Voice – has called for the boycott.

    The Salvation Army has done more for the poor for longer than you’ve been alive. and you father.

    You are getting nowhere with your Chamberlainesque appeasement. You don’t know what you are dealing with. The savage attacks on Wendy Turnball, now attacking the Salvos, – you’re country in under siege, And you and Greg are happy to show them the way.

    I was kidding about the island. If you can’t tell that, then maybe you should be careful what you read.

    Overcoming evil with good, doesn’t mean legalizing everything. Overcoming evil with good doesn’t mean you love everyone so much that you let people do whatever they want whenever they want. You will be happy to talk about love now when it comes to gays…but I’ve never seen you show Phil Pringle, Joyce Meyers, or even Steve the kind of love you quoted from the Bible.

    Don’t you clowns understand? you are all just scared. The gay hordes can threaten anyone they want, and you just stand there kicking those on the ground saying yeah yeah, take that for something that happened centuries ago.

    The Salvos?! This Savage Gardener doesn’t know anything about the history of this country or the Salvos. So, it doesn’t matter how much an organization will love, and show love practically (who’s done more for the downtrodden than them?) – they will be attacked, and boycotted until they bow the knee and agree that homosexuality is okay, and that gay marriage should be legal.

    They won’t stop until then. If you can’t see that, then you are totally blind.

    And yes…..i know. Some christian some where did something naughty…. are you going to come up with some examples?

    I can beat you to it.

    So what. Once gay marriage is legalized, it won’t stop there.

    This used to be a decent country.

    You say that people have the right to boycott gloria jeans -so you support that. But if Christians boycotted a gay owned or politically active business, you’d probably all of a sudden become a lovey dovey Christian and attack them….so, in the end, we can’t win with your tactics.

    ANd why? I suggest the real reason is that you are just ashamed of biblical truth. Incredible that Aussies have become such a bunch of wimps that they can’t say “Men were not meant to have sex with or marry men”.

    Isn’t that the irony. On this blog, because I say I agree with something when I do, and am not interested in calling someone an idiot, everyone considers me the coward of the county!

    But you Aussies are too scared to just say something is wrong.

    Unless of course you get all tough-guy John Wayne theologian and ride into town shooting at people who preach about tithes, or that you can have an abundant life.

    Why? Because they don’t fight back. But gays, muslims? No way.

    There will come the day Bones, when a minister of the gospel won’t be able to tell someone in his youth group that homosexuality is a sin. There will come a day, when the gay person will say that at fist the church seemed loving and kind, but they didn’t let me become a home leader just because of my sexuality.

    It’s basically already here.

    Wake up . What an absolute shame and disgrace that the only countries in the world where gay marriage is gaining ground, are countries where most people said they were Christians – and even now they answer that way.

    Christians would have to be the dumbest bunch of lazy cowards on the planet at the moment.

  95. Wait for the next post. Bones will probably explain why some Salvation Army people were hypocrites in WW1 or something.

  96. No question.

    If gay marriage is seen as exactly as the race issue, then saying that homosexuality is a sin will be classed as hate speech or not acceptable.

    Of course. If you don’t believe me, go ask the gays?

    That my friend is why legislation matters!

  97. And that is why lawyers in the UK and US are worried.

    Maybe people here don’t know much about the legal world??

    A university, Christian or not, can not discriminate on the basis of race. REGARDLESS OF WHETHER what they believe about race is based on their beliefs.

    e.g Mormons had beliefs about races back in the day -but because of civil rights couldn’t continue with that.

    IF, and here it is IF, discrimination in any form on the basis of race, (not promoting to leadership etc), regardless of religious belief, then IF homosexual rights are the same as race rights, then OF COURSE the day will come when gays will argue that they are denied human rights in Christian organizations.

    What’s strange is, that if I talked to Christian gay activists, they’d totally agree with me. The only people who don’t see it are people like Bones who are naive. Yeah, that’s the word naive. Many people think that if we give them their rights, then they’ll leave us alone, because they will see how much we love them and that thinking they would want rights within churches is scaremongering.

    But it’s just the simple logical progression.

    ANd if I were gay, that’s the way i’d see it.

    They haven’t been able to win by popular vote. That’s why in the US they are going the way of the courts and arguing as a human rights issue. And if it works there, then the Europe/US worshippers, will say – look in the US … look in Europe it’s considered a basic human right.

    I can’t see why people can’t see this. It’s just the natural logical progression.

    Fancy the Salvation Army being under attack. That’s just not cricket.

    Anyway, this isn’t funny anymore.

  98. Got to go. But let me say, that for all the things people here say about someone like Joel Osteen -at least the had the guts to simply say that he thinks homosexual sex is wrong, and Billy Graham who doesn’t have much time left, publicly came out in support of the simple, previously undisputed concept that marriage is between a man and a woman.

    God bless Billy Graham.

  99. @Q

    Mate, well done!!!! I now know where you stand. It took a while for you to rev up, but when you finally let it all out, it was GOLD! Great stuff.

  100. They haven’t been able to win by popular vote. That’s why in the US they are going the way of the courts and arguing as a human rights issue. And if it works there, then the Europe/US worshippers, will say – look in the US … look in Europe it’s considered a basic human right.

    The only thing that will stop it being legislated federally in this country is Catholic Tony Abbott bullying his Coalition Party to toe his line. All others have a conscience vote.

    And it is legal in Qld too. There has been such a change here since its been legalised with gays getting married everywhere and taking over the state.

    The sky is falling.

    Look out Chicken Little.

    Now excuse me while I go and find some other sin to trumpet against.

    Might start with clergy committing child abuse.

  101. And yes I am more concerned with pastors ripping off other Christians to fund their lavish lifestyles then what a couple of gays who don’t know Jesus are doing in their bedroom.

  102. Bones, did you read the news today?

    THE Salvation Army is facing a backlash after its online anti-homosexuality and gay marriage stance sparked a social media boycott campaign.
    Gay pop star Darren Hayes – the face of ’90s hit machine Savage Garden and a mentor on The Voice – has called for the boycott

    Yep. That’s why we have freedom of speech and we are a democracy. You know that means people have different opinions. Also the Salvos rely on public donations not just from their church members.

    Happens the other way too – Christians boycott gays. But that’s OK.

    Let us know when you find a better form of government.

    Maybe back to the RC Church running the State.

    Oh and

    The Salvation Army in Australia is distancing itself from a statement by its international parent organisation that homosexuality is “an unacceptable urge”.

    The gay community has criticised the church’s online declaration.

    Church spokesman Major Bruce Harmer says its Australian arm believes the statement needs to be changed.

    He has denied the Salvation Army is homophobic and has appealed to the gay community not make judgements on the declaration.

    “If you had a bad taxi driver, you wouldn’t group all taxi drivers the same as well,” he said.

    “At the moment the international statement is our statement, but we are working behind the scenes.”

    He says the church’s position on homosexuality is being debated internally and the Australian arm believes it needs to be changed.

    Major Harmer says the Salvos offer services to all who are in need, regardless of sexual orientation.

    “The Salvation Army has worked for many years with gay and lesbian people through their treatment centres and welfare agencies, we have employees who are gay and members of our church who are gay,” he said.

    “So it’s easy to take one phrase and run with it, but in reality the Salvation Army is not homophobic.”

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-06-18/salvation-army-distances-itself-from-anti-gay-comments/4076812

  103. Might start with clergy committing child abuse

    eg

    Frank Houston, 2000

    Main article: Frank Houston

    Houston founded his first Assemblies of God ministry at Lower Hutt, New Zealand in 1960, and served as the superintendent of the Assemblies of God in New Zealand from 1965 to 1971. Moving to Sydney, Australia,in 1977 he founded Sydney Christian Life Centre, eventually becoming an Assemblies of God church and latter founding church of Hillsong, and with many other ministry arms including a Bible and Creative Arts College. [36]. He was also involved in over twenty CLCs being opened throughout New South Wales, Australia and overseas and held senior positions within the Assemblies of God in Australia.

    In 2000 he was advised to resign his ministerial credentials by his own son, Brian Houston the National President of the Assemblies of God in Australia, after Houston confessed to the sexual abuse of young (under-age) male members of his New Zealand congregation 30 years earlier.[37]

    Contrary to the requirements of New South Wales child protection legislation neither Brian Houston nor the AOG administration reported the matters to the police and Frank Houston was never charged or convicted. However, Houston did resign, living in Hillsong-owned accommodation until his death in 2004.[37][38]

    In August 2007 further allegations emerged that Houston had sexually abused a trainee pastor during counseling sessions in the early 1980s.[39]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_scandals_involving_evangelical_Christians#Frank_Houston.2C_2000

  104. Bones, re Houston, I don’t know what to say. That totally shocked me.

    re Joel Osteen, he is not in favor of gay marriage, says homosexual activity is a sin, and would not conduct a same-sex marriage. that’s my stance. On this site I have maintained two positions. One, that homosexual sexual activity is wrong. (and I wouldn’t ordinarily talk about it much except that some argue that it’s acceptable for a Christian to engage in homosexual sex). And second, that I am opposed to legalizing gay marriage. I believe in democracy. I love democracy – which is why I think Christians and other normal people should voice their opinions. Which is what I am doing here. And no, I don’t want the Roman Catholic church or any other church to run the government. I’m not even interested in voting or being part of a Christian political party because I think Christians are free to have differences of opinions on foreign policy, economics etc, not matter how we agree on moral issues.

    I don’t have much passion re gay marriage actually. But I get sick of reading the news and seeing it covered everyday.

  105. As for Joel Osteen and the Salvation Army – it just goes to show how much everyone is trying to love gays, and appear non-condemning. And that’s great – I do it too. But, I think we have to realize that they’ll never be satisfied.

  106. So let’s see, Bones. You are up in arms at Roundhouse for raising the pedophile equivalence with gays, and quite rightly, but very happy to bring it up in connection with church ministers.

    Can you not see a slight inconsistency there?

    Secondly, how can you equate the poor behaviour of one minister with that of the rest?

    I’m not sure exactly what you’re trying to achieve.

  107. Steve, in case you haven’t noticed, if you are not in favor of allowing homosexuals and those who surgically changed their gender to marry, you have very strict boundaries with which to argue.

    But if you in favor of it then you can bring up heterosexual divorce, centuries old slavery, child brides, the failings of ministers, and just about anything. Actually, note the “just about anything”, because they really will clutch at anything.

    But it’s a good tactic. Public figures are reticent to oppose it because then their personal life and failings going back decades are open to be used.

    It’s very simple. Hypocrites don’t have the right to tell people what to do argument. So, by talking about wrongs committed by any one associated with church over 2000 years, they can say “Well look at that! What right do you have to say anything”.

    If only that tactic could be used by kids, students, and criminals.

  108. No Bones, I do know what to say. Houston sinned. Houston sinning is in no way relevant to whether our great country should allow men to marry men. King David sinned. I’m not going to change marriage laws over it. Peter denied Christ.

    People sin, people repent, people are forgiven. I’m not interested in past sins. I don’t want gays put in jail. Just to repent, and stop having sex with men. That’s not what God intended for them when they were born.

    Just today baby boys were born. Should the doctor say “mrs Jones, it’s a boy. Well, for now anyway. maybe it’s really deep down a girl, in which case I’ll see you in a few years when I’ll be happy to remove his genitalia and supply hormones. Anyway, congratulation.

    Homosexuality, trans-gender – it’s just crazy. Just crazy.

  109. re passion. Gay marriage, insane liberal theology, sex before marriage, – this has all led to the increase of divorce.

    So, you are right. I am going to put my passion into preventing divorce. Here’s where to start.
    Teach men to be men. First, that will mean obviously that you don’t encourage them when they say they are really girls.
    Second, you do not encourage them when they say they love men and want to have sex with them and marry them.
    Next, teach girls not want to be men. Teach them that they don’t have sex with women or marry them, and they don’t have sex with men until they get married.

    Gay marriage, prositution, Greg’s “God doesn’t care what people do with their genitals”, free sex, abortion, – these are all the enemies of marriage.

    Stop boys from becoming girlymen. Which is what i basically became.

    But no more.

  110. Passion is what the homosexual and transgender people have in their quest to re-engineer society. It’s evidenced by that fact that for them, giving homosexual and transgender people the right to marry is more important than the livelihoods of workers in an Australian owned business, support to small groups like RUokay , and the great work of the Salvation Army.

    So, in these tough economic times, I say let’s support the Salvos who do such good work, and not sabotage the work of RUokay.

    The work of the Salvation Army needs support.

    Homosexuals won’t shut up, so why should heterosexuals?

  111. So let’s see, Bones. You are up in arms at Roundhouse for raising the pedophile equivalence with gays, and quite rightly, but very happy to bring it up in connection with church ministers.

    No Bones, I do know what to say. Houston sinned. Houston sinning is in no way relevant to whether our great country should allow men to marry men. King David sinned. I’m not going to change marriage laws over it. Peter denied Christ.

    Ah so we see the lack of moral outrage when our favourite Christian sins. Or the propensity to excuse sins committed by Christians.

    Instead Christians stand and self-righteously point at the world. Thank God we’re not like them they say.

    Only thing is they’re pointing back.

    At the hypocrites.

    Judgement begins with the House of God.

    Wonder what that means?

  112. Interesting recent quote from George Barna: ‘the role of the family has eroded significantly during the past four decades, making the media and public policy much more powerful in directing people’s thoughts, perceptions, and responses. Children are now being raised with a completely different set of authority figures, core values, and expectations than has traditionally been the case, leaving them defenseless against the onslaught of new and unfortunate ways of perceiving and responding to the world.’

    The socialist, liberal, one-world agenda has been hacking away at the family for years using all means at its disposal including the gay lobby. Bones et al are clearly in denial at this premeditated and concerted push, all nicely sugar-coated in the balm of ‘tolerant society’ mantras.

    No need to refute it; we can see the results before us, and the only ‘progressive’ outcome is that it brings the day closer when the amorphous blob of a global state-sponsored societal framework controls every element of life.

    I assume, Bones, wazza etc, you are seeking the lyrics of Lennon’s ‘Imagine’ to come to pass, because that is the end-state we are inexorably heading towards.

  113. Interesting recent quote from George Barna: ‘the role of the family has eroded significantly during the past four decades, making the media and public policy much more powerful in directing people’s thoughts, perceptions, and responses. Children are now being raised with a completely different set of authority figures, core values, and expectations than has traditionally been the case, leaving them defenseless against the onslaught of new and unfortunate ways of perceiving and responding to the world.’

    The socialist, liberal, one-world agenda has been hacking away at the family for years using all means at its disposal, including the gay lobby. Bones et al are clearly in denial at this premeditated and concerted push, all nicely sugar-coated in the balm of ‘tolerant society’ mantras.

    No need to refute it; we can see the results before us, and the only ‘progressive’ outcome is that it brings the day closer when the amorphous blob of a global state-sponsored societal framework controls every element of life.

    I assume, Bones, wazza etc, you are seeking the lyrics of Lennon’s ‘Imagine’ to come to pass, because that is the end-state we are inexorably heading towards.

  114. Zeibart has been reading George Orwell’s 1984 again.

    Ironically the biggest opposition to the One World government boogeyman are the rogue states like Syria, North Korea, Iran and Israel.

  115. @Steve

    “You are up in arms at Roundhouse for raising the pedophile equivalence with gays, and quite rightly,”

    I don’t know why you’re still going on about my mention of pedophiles. It seems you still didn’t get my point. I was simply stating that the things people say and believe about pedophilia now were the same things said about homosexuality 50 years ago. I wasn’t in any way comparing homosexuals with pedophiles, just the fact that pedophilia will be viewed as acceptable in the future, just as homosexuality is now.

  116. The gay agenda is really a smokescreen for the hidden agenda.

    The hidden agenda is polygamous incestuous bestial marriage for necrophiliac pedophiles.

    I think in 50 years they will be viewed as acceptable in the future, just as homosexuality is now.

    You know it makes sense.

  117. I’d never say any nation was a hurdle to attaining global governance. And if you can’t see large tracts of Animal Farm, 1984 or Brave New World lining up, you’re living in your own fantasy reality Bones.

    I suppose ones eschatology might dictate personal opinions on this. So after mass financial collapse what do you suppose will prevent a global solution from rising from the ashes? It’s thoroughly documented that once the extended family was broken down, the nuclear one will collapse soon, then every man’s an island to be picked off by Big Government.

    Why do you think that left-leaning technocrat caretaker govts are popping up all over Europe if not to push the socialist agenda of creating more and more public sector workers at the expense of the creative engine room in private business? It’s happening in France, Obama’s all over this mandate, look out UK and the other Euro dominoes. Get your head out of what ever left-wing, welfare state supporting propaganda you read and wake up to your future.

  118. shocking paragraphing, and a bit scatty that last piece – not sure what came over me, but you get the drift..

  119. A good one for all Signposters, especially, Bones, Zorro, Roundhouse, Steve, Greg, wazza, ok, all of us. Who said this:

    “The coarsening of our culture and the loss of civility in our civilization is one of the things that concerns me most about our nation. We don’t know how to disagree without being disagreeable. The fact is, you can — you can walk hand-in-hand without seeing eye-to-eye. And what we need in our country is unity, not uniformity. There are major differences, politically, religiously, economically in our nation. We have many different streams in our nation . . . What is solvable is how we treat each other with our differences . . . In fact, the Bible tells me in I Peter, show respect to everyone, even people I totally disagree with. So I’m coming from that viewpoint in that we must return civility to our civilization in order to get on. But the reason I do that is because of the deeper reason, there’s a spiritual root to my reason for civility.”

  120. regarding the idea that pedophilia will be acceptable in 50 years … absolutely not!

    Polygamy and maybe incest … but not anything where a vulnerable person is exploited.

  121. Rick Warren said that.

    Zeibart, I too have seen Tim La Haye’s Left Behind movies.

    I didn’t realise they were documentaries.

    Oh dear now we have Obama the AntiChrist! Better hope we get a real Christian like Mitt who’ll lead us into battle against the demonic left Bosheviks.

    I remember growing up how Communism was the AntiChrist, Now it’s moved to someone else.

    It’s a pity the UN doesn’t have more power to do something about Rwanda, Sudan and Syria.

    Of course the role of peacekeepers is to do the work of the AntiChrist. Only in Christianity do you get such (il)logic.

  122. That’s right Bull, Christians don’t practice polygamy.

    Oh wait a minute…

    Reformation period

    In the 16th century, there was a Christian re-examination of plural marriages. The founder of the Protestant Reformation, Martin Luther wrote: “I confess that I cannot forbid a person to marry several wives, for it does not contradict the Scripture. If a man wishes to marry more than one wife he should be asked whether he is satisfied in his conscience that he may do so in accordance with the word of God. In such a case the civil authority has nothing to do in the matter.”[31] Lutheran theologians approved of Philip of Hesse’s polygamous marriages to Christine of Saxony and Margarethe von der Saale for this purpose, as well as initial disapproval of divorce and adultery. As well as Phillip, there was much experimentation with marital duration within early German Lutheranism amongst clergy and their erstwhile wives.

    The theologian Philipp Melanchthon likewise counseled that Henry VIII need not risk schism by dissolving his union with the established churches to grant himself divorces in order to replace his barren wives, but could instead look to polygamy as a suitable alternative.

    Anabaptist leader Bernhard Rothmann initially opposed the idea of plural marriage. However, he later wrote a theological defense of plural marriage, and took 9 wives himself, saying “God has restored the true practice of holy matrimony amongst us.”[32][33] Franz von Waldeck and the other enemies of Anabaptist leader John of Leiden accused him of keeping 16 wives, and publicly beheading one when she disobeyed him. This was used as the basis for their conquest of Münster in 1535.[34]

    The 16th century Italian Capuchin Monk, Bernardino Ochino, 77 years old and never married, wrote the “Thirty Dialogues”, wherein Dialog XXI was considered a defense of plural marriage. Evidently, he borrowed some of his strongest arguments from a Lutheran dialogue written in 1541 in favor of plural marriage which was written under the fictitious name Huldericus Necobulus in the interest of justifying Philip of Hesse.[35]

    A different position was taken by the Council of Trent in 1563, which was opposed to polygyny[36] and concubinage.[37] The polemicist John Milton expressed support for polygamy in his De doctrina christiana.[38]

    The Lutheran pastor Johann Lyser strongly defended plural marriage in a work entitled “Polygamia Triumphatrix”.[39][40] As a result, he was imprisoned, beaten and exiled from Italy to Holland. His book was burned by the public executioner.[41] He never married nor desired wedlock.[41] Samuel Friedrich Willenberg, a doctor of law at the University of Cracow, incurred the hatred of the Poles by writing the pro-plural marriage book De finibus polygamiae licitae. In 1715, his book was ordered to be burned. Friedrich escaped with his life, but was fined one hundred thousand gold pieces.[41]

    One of the more notable published works regarding the modern concept of Christian Plural Marriage dates from the 18th century. The book “Thelyphthora”[42] was written by Martin Madan, a significant writer of hymns and a contemporary of John Wesley and Charles Wesley. Though Madan was an adherent only of polygyny in a Christian context, this particular volume set the foundation of what is considered the modern Christian Plural Marriage movement.

    19th century views

    John Colenso was the Anglican bishop of Natal, South Africa, in 1853. He was the first to write down the Zulu language. He championed the Zulu way of life, to include plural marriage.[43][44]

    A significant work, published in 1869 by James Campbell (pseudonym) entitled “The History and Philosophy of Marriage (or Polygamy and Monogamy Compared)”,[45] establishes a thorough development of the sourcing behind the modern movement of Christian Plural Marriage.

    Modern views

    The Nigerian Celestial Church of Christ allows clergy and laymen to keep multiple wives, and the Lutheran Church of Liberia began allowing plural marriage in the 1970s.[46][47]

    Several other denominations permit those already in polygamous marriages to convert and join their church, without having to renounce their multiple marriages. These include the African Instituted Harrist Church, started in 1913.[46]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polygamy_in_Christianity

  123. Bones,
    Ah so we see the lack of moral outrage when our favourite Christian sins. Or the propensity to excuse sins committed by Christians.

    Not at all. That wasn’t even what I was saying.

    If a man is guilty he should face the consequences. Frank Houston was wrong and should have gone through the courts.

    What I am saying is that you shouldn’t be so condemning of someone who makes entirely the same point you made. You should actually be acknowledging Roundhouse’s comment as essentially the same as yours, only with different targets.

    But you are radically wrong and hypocritical to take the sins of one person and lay them on everyone else in the same vocation.

    And I think it’s wrong of you to add my comment to Qs as if they were connected. They were not.

    Zorro did a similar cut’n’paste to make something I said into nothing I said by pulverising both the complete sentence and the context.

    You really are applying some cheap tactics.

  124. Roundhouse, I accept your explanation, but my point is that it is unwise, if not wrong, to bring the equivalence between homosexual sex and pedophile abuse, even if your motives are well intentioned.

    I think it is equally wrong for Bones to accuse all clergy of one clergyman’s sin.

    I don’t think pedophilia will ever be acceptable in the community.

  125. Bones,
    Instead Christians stand and self-righteously point at the world. Thank God we’re not like them they say.

    Do they? Who? You?

    But I’ll tell you what I do say, with Peter – “If the righteous one is scarcely saved, Where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?”

    Which is taken from exactly the same text you produced about the judgement beginning at the House of God.

    1 Peter 4
    12 Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you;
    13 but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.
    14 If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified.
    15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or as a busybody in other people’s matters.
    16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter.
    17 For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God?
    18 Now “If the righteous one is scarcely saved, Where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?”
    19 Therefore let those who suffer according to the will of God commit their souls to Him in doing good, as to a faithful Creator.

    Yes! Indeed!

    So when you read the context of what is being said, it is certainly not the world which is judging the Household of God, is it? No it is the world which is bringing the Church under a fiery trial of its faith in God.

    Yes, and if it begin with us, and we barely make it through, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God?

    So the fiery trial which comes on the Church is the testing of our faith, not some examination form the world to prove us to be hypocrites.

    What does the world know about judging the Church? If they knew how to judge the Church they would first judge themselves and repent.

    See how you subtly bent the truth with your liberal theology!

    The onus on us is to have a good report with those who are without, but not to comply to their demands for legalised sin. We are to resist all temptation to sin.

    What I see is the world gradually crowding the Church out of their humanistic secularism and bringing the separation we need to have to demonstrate that we are genuinely followers of Christ, and not followers of the world’s systems.

    That is what we will be judged for, Bones – whether we follow the world and bow to their pressure to comply to their systems, or whether we follow Christ and obey his Word, resisting the temptation to bow down to the world’s idolatry.

  126. Bones, for the hard of understanding – Obama is not the antichrist,(but may well be being influenced by the spirit of antichrist), pre-trib rapture is not scripturally sound (but post-trib is), and what you want to help usher in is a much more low-key and sophisticated version of communism. The communism of the early 20th C was a failed social experiment of the most tragic kind.

    Are you really a teacher of our nation’s youth?

  127. A rapture post might be interesting, but like Margot said, you kind of grow through the whole focus on when Jesus will come again (although if your preterist that’s a moot point).

    I tend to think rapture study is a bit like cider in that you cut your alcohol teeth on it and them move on to grown up drink (no offence to you scrumpy suppers 🙂 )

    Post-trib is the view that I think is held most clearly by those living in 1st C, after looking at the scriptures and early church writings.

  128. Are you really a teacher of our nation’s youth?

    Yes.

    Sorry, Zeibart, but nutbag eschatology is no longer part of the curriculum.

    Will it be up to the Christian right like Tony Abbott and Mitt Romney to stand up to the Jewish Bolshevik Illluminati takeover of the World?

    Someone give them a cape.

  129. The atheists are seeing to that, Bones, eh! What sort of voice do Christian teachers have in their schools? Any? Or do they have to sign a code of silence and renounce proselytism?

  130. But you are radically wrong and hypocritical to take the sins of one person and lay them on everyone else in the same vocation.

    Oh dear. Touchy aren’t we. Where on Earth did I say that every minister was a paedophile?

    What I did say was the community sees as hypocritical, Christians preaching to the world on their behaviour when their own leaders are lacking in moral fibre. In fact these leaders are celebrated as examples of successful ministries.

    Now you can indignantly rant and rave about that all you like but mud sticks.

    Of course that’s what happens when Christians set themselves up as the moral guardians of society.

  131. What sort of voice do Christian teachers have in their schools? Any? Or do they have to sign a code of silence and renounce proselytism?

    Like all Qld Public Servants, teachers (and chaplains btw) have a code of conduct specifically looking at 4 principles:

    Integrity and impartiality
    Promoting the public good
    Commitment to the system of government
    Accountability and transparency.

    Teachers standards are far more ethical than a lot of church structures.

    Also below:

    We have a responsibility to always conduct and present ourselves in a professional manner, and demonstrate respect for all persons, whether fellow employees, clients or members of the public.
    We will:
    a. treat co-workers, clients and members of the public with courtesy and respect, be appropriate in our relationships with them, and recognise that others have the right to hold views which may differ from our own
    b. ensure our conduct reflects our commitment to a workplace that is inclusive and free from harassment
    c. ensure our fitness for duty, and the safety, health and welfare of ourselves and others in the workplace, whether co-workers or clients
    d. ensure our private conduct maintains the integrity of the public service and our ability to perform our duties, and
    e. comply with legislative and/or policy obligations to report employee criminal charges and convictions.

    And as I’ve said even the most ardent Fundamentalist school has to teach evolution, whatever your personal belief. Nor can you judge people based on their sexuality (same goes with chaplains). I’ve talked about God and the Bible in classes eg science (formation of the Solar System), SOSE (traditional stories) and given my opinion on what I believe. But I always emphasise that’s my opinion.

  132. ”nutbag eschatology”

    So what exactly is the ‘sane and rational’ eschatology of Bones? Jesus has already come back in 70 AD?
    Jesus is never coming back in physical form?
    Who knows and who cares, it’s all impenetrable prophecy and flowery language open to individual interpretation?

  133. Who knows and who cares, it’s all impenetrable prophecy and flowery language open to individual interpretation?

    Pretty much.

  134. I shall look on with some amusement, Zeibart.

    Hopefully I can add to my list of AntiChrists.

    Yasser Arafat, ‘The Beast’ (the Super Computer of the EU in Brussels), Jimmy Carter, Bill Gates, Mikhail Gorbachev, John F Kennedy, Henry Kissinger, Martin Luther, Benito Mussolini, Nero Caesar, Pope John Paul II, Ronald Reagan, Pat Robertson, David Rockefeller, Anwar Sadat, Saddam Hussein, Willy Brandt, Caligula, King Juan Carlos of Spain, Emperor Frederick II of Germany, King George II of England, Emperor Justinian, Ayatollah Khomeini, Nikita Khrushchev, Sun Myung Moon, Napoleon Bonaparte, Czar Peter the Great, Pete Seeger, Josef Stalin, Kaiser Wilhelm, Boris Yeltsin, Saddam Hussein, Adolf Hitler, Jews, USSR, Catholic Church, European Economic Community, World Council of Churches, UN, fibre optics, bar codes, microchips, Communism, feminists, socialism, Barak Obama,

    Read More

    Naming the Antichrist: The History of an American Obsession
    by Robert C. Fuller

    In Naming the Anitchrist, Fuller takes readers on a fascinating journey through the dark side of the American religious psyche.

    http://books.google.com.au/books?id=Hb2mrW5gDbYC&pg=PA175&lpg=PA175&dq=pete+seegar+antichrist&source=bl&ots=-MOL9iDU5l&sig=fmkJldslnxi9B-yvMTgvDDTxgWo&hl=en&sa=X&ei=gvLiT97-IObYige3j6j8Dg&ved=0CGEQ6AEwBw#v=onepage&q=pete%20seegar%20antichrist&f=false

    Hal Lindsey says “Hi”.

  135. “I wish we’d all been ready” …

    Popular song, bad theology. The righteous are left behind and the wicked are taken into judgement. Luke 17:34-37 Matthew 24:40-41

  136. Interesting list of personalities, but naming names has never been in good taste. The observant believer, filled with the Holy Spirit, will know all they need to know at the right time, including the one called Antichrist.

    Further to your saying that ‘the righteous are left behind’, Margot, scripture would appear to be more precisely, ‘the righteous are either raised to life or transformed into their spiritual bodies’ (1 Cor 15).

  137. The context from those verses would suggest that the one taken could either be with the Lord or for judgement. It’s not clear nor does it have to be. Jesus’s point is that two similar looking, acting people may have totally different destinies at his return and we won’t know for sure who will be secure. Make sure your heart is ready is the message. This has no more bearing on the rapture than thinking thieves breaking in to houses will be happening.

  138. I listened to some of the second talk show. Since I don’t see pre-trib in scripture, most of the heavily delineated dispensationalism seems somewhat forced and not a little contrived. Consequently, Mr Ice’s view got bogged down trying to match events to verses when there is no connection.

    God has not planned an easy ejection seat to heaven for the church, that’s for certain.

  139. Bones,
    Teachers standards are far more ethical than a lot of church structures

    E.G.…?

    Should that be teacher’s, or teachers’ standards?

  140. That would be teachers’ standards (Showing possession of the plural teachers).

    Lol. You know you’ve won the debate when the other team starts critiquing your punctuation and grammar (or in this case keyboarding skills).

    Because they have nothing else.

  141. The Apocalypse of John and Its Mediators, or Why Johnny Cash Wrote a Better Apocalypse than John of Patmos!

    Johnny Cash the theologian

  142. This thread is rambling off into a slow death. Time for the next topic from those who post. No more flogging a gay dead Catholic horse for a while though please. Let’s be edified.

  143. “A gay dead Catholic horse” I wonder how long he would have to do in Purgatory?

  144. E.G…? = ‘for example’…?

    Well I had to spell put what e.g. means for Bones because he obviously missed it, judging by his claim he’d won some kind of argument based on a secondary comment I made about his punctuation.

    It is important in a way, because, if he was saying one teacher’s standards are higher than church standards, it could conceivably be correct, because there are undoubtedly outstanding teachers of the highest character and calibre, especially if they display Christian virtues.

    But if he was saying that all teachers have higher ethical standards than a lot of churches, I say he is wrong and should produce evidence to back his claims.

    Secondly, from a Christian perspective, holding to politically correct ethics could actually produce a tension between the values of secularism and he values of Christ.

  145. Greg,
    You know what we all ought to do is organise a signposts02 Conference…we all get to speak and we share the money according the number in our sessions…Steve you’ll have to pay to speak!

    I get the distinct impression you’re opposed to my contribution. Maybe I should just let you, Bones, wazza and Zorro share the spoils of your amazing oratories.

  146. Secondly, from a Christian perspective, holding to politically correct ethics could actually produce a tension between the values of secularism and he values of Christ.

    Like Christian schools having to teach evolution and not judging people based on their sexuality or the family God gave them.

  147. Pretty obvious that with scandals like child abuse, that churches have had to be dragged kicking and screaming into the light. They would have much preferred to deal (read ignore) with the problem themselves.

    Where of course in the state system it’s been mandatory to report cases for years.

  148. “Maybe I should just let you, Bones, wazza and Zorro share the spoils of your amazing oratories.”

    How about we invite “Dr” Phil Pringle to speak, Steve? He is a doctor, isn’t he? I mean, amongst the literati of C3 it is unanimously acknowledged that a doctorate from a diploma mill in the southern U.S. has been considerably more cachet than one from Harvard or Yale, or from Oxford or Cambridge, let alone any pathetically sub-standard Australian institution.

    (And of course there are all of Phil’s prosperous pulpit-pimping peers, amongst whom fake doctorates are the prop de jour. Why, one could hardly imagine the bare-faced impertinence of a word of faith preacher who would presume to ascend to a podium without first having a framed copy of the coveted toilet paper proudly displayed on their office wall).

    What about you, Steve? Have you been the beneficiary of higher education, or do you find that being under the “anointing” of C3 suffices? Maybe it’s enough for you to bask in the reflected glory of Phil Pringle as you eye the next rung on the Gnostic ladder (big fist pump and loud “amen” here, Steve, but cling on tightly with the other hand – don’t lose sight of the “vision”, and remember that you are “the head and not the tail”). Or do you perhaps aspire to be just like your movement’s illustrious super-apostle, erudite man of letters and undoubted polymath that he is? In any case, it’s heart warming to see that you have a place in C3 where you can find identity and purpose; if ever the realisation dawns for you that your leaders have feet of clay, you can always follow Jesus instead.

    P.S. please feel free to abstain from replying to this post; I would hate to hijack this thread – it would be far, far worse than the way that some “ministers” hijack the Gospel for personal gain. Besides, you wouldn’t want to be found feeding my “fatal obsession” – I’m sure that would weigh heavily on your all-too-sensitive conscience.

  149. @ Zorro – my goodness, the “cut & thrust” is for more piercing than the “cut & paste” so often done here! 🙂

    All I want is an answer to my previous question, being, is there anyone who can priovide some good exegesis of Habakkuk 2:2?

    The week before Vision Builders at C3, Ps. Phil put out a tweet stating “Write the vision. Make it clear so that he who reads will run!”

    Now this is either a warning that judgement against the Chaldeans for their wickedness is coming and God has forewarned Habakkuk to write and warn of said judgement.

    Or this has been eisegeted to prepare C3 for the unbiblical “vision” building of the “church” scenario, that represents C3 as God’s answer on this earth.

    Seriously, when are pastors who claim to read and understand historical Christian texts, going to correct this very bad use of God’s Word? Do they honestly believe they will not one day give an account for those under their care? Or are they truly not shepherds?

  150. Hello Margot,

    Thanks; I’m flattered that my copy meets with your approval.

    I enjoy really writing; it’s a welcome change from the things that fill my days at work. Poor old Steve, on the other hand, finds it all thoroughly discombobulating, to the extent that he has complained that the manner of my discourse is “intimidating”. (Oh, the irony! The biter bit; the thoroughly spiritually conversant C3 acolyte being “intimidated” by the anonymous nobody from outside that only true haven for the sheep, the blessed C3 fold!).

    Steve’s confusion arises, of course, from that classic C3 attitude which holds that anyone in Christendom who is clever is a C3 pastor, and that, conversely, any one in Christendom who is not a C3 pastor cannot possibly be clever at all. He has exhausted himself trying to dissuade me from taking the “leaders” of his beloved movement to task by resorting to a repertoire of tricks that would do an Olympic gymnast proud; sadly for him, it’s all water off a duck’s back.

    I have pointed out to Steve the fact that I can run rings around Phil Pringle, at which statement he took umbrage, claiming that it was nothing less than prideful boasting. Of course, his contention was ironic in the extreme, given that Phil Pringle himself is want to indulge in the most outrageously arrogant pontification and self-absorbed navel-gazing (and much of that from behind a supposed pulpit, no less).

  151. Zorro, when reading your posts, I can’t help thinking of Robbie Coltrane’s portrayal of Samuel Johnson in Blackadder 3.

  152. Margot, I would concur that Hab 2:2 is your first paragraph on it. God is preparing Habakkuk to receive revelation regarding his second question to the Lord. The verses 2:2-3 are preparatory, telling him to write down what is about to be said so that couriers can spread the message far and wide, to not be disappointed by seeming delays in fulfillment, and that it will come to pass according to God’s perfect timing.

    Not knowing what PP may have been preaching about recently or setting the church up to receive, it’s difficult to see how this verse can be used for much. Then again, I was ‘invited to find another church’ on the basis of Amos 3:3!

  153. LOL, Ziebart; that’s very funny.

    I would say that Steve is the Prince Regent: blankly uncomprehending, but struggling gamely to keep up nonetheless.

    (I note that the Prince Regent also admits to being a slow reader, and it wouldn’t surprise me in the least if dyed-in-the-wool C3’ers can only negotiate written material at the most laggardly of paces.)

  154. C3 College Combined Staff Meeting & C3 College student chapel

    Dr Phil needs more cash

    13 June 2012

    Apparently Phil gave us church and rambles about the houses he bought.

    Apparently Jesus looks at the Church’s abundance and prosperity and those that are modern, contemporary and alive.

    Now giving the option to pay by credit card and hoping to direct debit.

    You need to sacrifice something ie sell something and give the money to Dr Phil.

  155. Vision Builders 2012 video message – according to PP he is concerned with 5 things: buildings, facilities, communications, media and television. Presumably so as many people as possible can enter more contemporary bricks and mortar temples to hear a money message.

    How very Jesus.

  156. I can’t imagine any bible reading, Holy Spirit-dependent person attending this and not having the hairs on the back of their necks stand up with genuine concern. Either that or have to be woken from deep slumber.

    The fact that there were not mass walk-outs must mean that the Pringles assume that they are safely in the Christian superstar zone and act as if anything that drips from their mouths are highly prized spiritual gems that the audience is desperate to soak up. The audience are suitably brain-washed through the music and their pop-culture, pastor-on-a-pedestal framework of church that there is a totally unquestioning attitude to the sad drivel you linked to, Margot.

    Spiritually vacuous leadership is all too often in evidence today, but spiritually dangerous leadership is clearly operating in reasonable sized movements such as C3.

    That some here are prepared to rip into one denomination and stick up for this variety is quite staggering frankly. I’m really saddened by what I have watched and read coming from the C3 inspirational hub in the last couple of days.

  157. Good grief…this from the 2012 Vision Builders document:

    ”We see our future in buildings that glorify God”

    This is flawed on so many levels, it’s heartbreaking. I pray the entire movement comes crashing down in a sea of debt and financial ruin. They will be right up there with the Rev 18 merchants bewailing the downfall of Babylon, for that is their spiritual heart. They are totally bewitched and convinced that the lost can only meet Jesus inside a C3 building.

  158. @ zeibart – there are many starting to wake up from that slumber, a world wide awakening.

    I think Zorro pointed out an obvious problem, particularly addressing Steve – calling it a “blind spot”.

    Had an awful thought this morning, with the song “shiny, happy people” coming to mind – none of us want to believe we could be deceived (or come under a judgment for having “itching ears”).

  159. @ Steve (and Zeibart) – this response seems to prove the “blindspot”.

    I’m not sure if Zeibart just read the post and/or watched the hour+ youtube clip.

    I did both – I watched live on the day, literally with tears in my eyes (not of laughter) as a woman brought shame to the gospel. From the outset, the language, the flirting, the remarks about why she got her earrings, the abuse/spin of God’s word – tell me Steve, that’s the gospel?

    I’m not interested in what your beef is with Jake, but I care deeply for those who are held sway by this very obvious false teaching.

    My “reformed” position in this? You have got to be kidding!! The blatant twisting to make the bible fit some idea that dropped in her head (that you call poetic and prophetic!) – now that IS reprehensible.

    For what it’s worth, the author of the blog is a married woman, homeschooling 4 children, and though she probably would be more modest about it, is no theological lightweight if you care to read her other posts.

    I’ll leave you with her own thoughts on phariseeism…….

    “A few months back, I read this wonderful article on the Issues, Etc. regarding those who play the “Pharisee Card”. The author of this article addresses those who claim that you are being a “Pharisee” if you insist on doctrinal purity. He points out that Jesus did not condemn the Pharisees for their doctrinal purity but rather for holding tight to their own traditions and those man-made traditions were crowding out God’s actual commandments. They were actually condemned by Jesus for doctrinal impurity.

    I have been accused of Phariseeism before, more times than I care to count. The attitude that usually seemed to come from the other person was irritation that I held such a high view of God’s law and of his commands. And it’s usually not because I have condemned their actions but because I am choosing a course of action myself that makes them feel condemned.

    Now, at the same time, I know I have been guilty of my share of self-righteousness and have held to my own traditions, straining out gnats and swallowing camels. I think those instances are more rare than they used to be, but I’m not denying they happen. But there seems to be this general attitude among many modern Christians that our “freedom from the law”, which Paul proclaims most vociferously in the book of Romans and Galatians, that this would include freedom from holding a high view of God’s law. They also think we have freedom from needing to know it or do our best to obey it. (See Romans 6 for Paul’s opinion regarding this attitude. I think he would use bold print for this also if he had that option in his time.)

    With all this in the back of my mind, these same thoughts stumbled to the forefront as I was making my way through Psalm 119. I hope that most of my readers can agree that King David was a Pharisee. He and was a man of faith and repeated this heart of faith over and over in his Psalms. He followed the way of faith and had faith in a God of mercy who puts the law “do not murder” above the ceremonial laws, such as when he ate the bread of the presence in the Temple when on the run from Saul. (Matthew 12:3-4)

    Jesus himself said that he did not come to get rid of the law but to fulfill it and blessed those who kept the law and condemned those who would take even a letter or the smallest mark away from it. (Matthew 5:17) But especially startling is to look at the passages, just from Psalm 119, where David expressed his own feelings about those who despised God’s Word. There is almost one of these for each section of this psalm, but it’s especially astounding to me to look at them in immediate succession. I apologize that they are out of order. I took them down in a non-methodical fashion and, in the spirit of not being a Pharisee, I chose not to rearrange them. (Really it’s because my own nature is not bothered by such things. My apologies to readers who might find their disorder disturbing.):

    ““I hate and abhor falsehood.” (119:163)

    “I look at the faithless with disgust.” (119:158)

    “I hate every false way.” (119:104 & 128)

    “Put false ways far from me.” (119:29)

    “Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things.” (119:37)

    “Hot indignation seizes me because of the wicked, who forsake your law.” (119:53)

    “My zeal consumes me, because my foes forget your words.” (119:39)

    “I hate the double-minded, but I love your law.” (119:113)

    My eyes shed streams of tears, because people do not keep your law.” (119:136)

    Salvation is far from the wicked, for they do not keep your statutes.” (119:115)

    I could be wrong, but if King David showed up in 21st century America and started spouting these things in church, the reception would be cold, jaws would drop. (He might get dragged out and locked away!) He would probably be called a Pharisee, by today’s skewed definitions. But the more I come to love God’s word and see how Christ and his Cross is placarded from beginning to end and as I see (and as I experienced) how much misery is laid on the backs of Christians by teachers who teach false ways. And I realize that those teachers would have no audience if their listeners knew God’s Word better and knew how to interpret it soundly. And the more I learn myself, the more my feelings begin to line up with these voiced by David. (Voiced by God through David!) These verses used to disturb me, but now they speak my heart more than ever.

  160. And by twisting God’s Word the way she did (and being allowed to & approved of), Chris Pringle proves she is “despising God’s Word”…

  161. AND another thought, Steve, you’re ascribing powers and abilities to Mrs. Pringle, rather along the lines the Catholic Church ascribes powrs and abilities to Mary………same blind spot?

  162. I wouldn’t say Pharisaic, but it’s not a scriptural critique. It’s just a moan about things she doesn’t like, petty irritations from a person with a reformed opinion.

    I wouldn’t expect you or she to like Chris, but if she thinks she is going to get a theological treatise from Chris there are not many people who’d take you seriously. The sad thing is that you know better. In your heart y do anyway.

    And you know enough of the set up to see how Crenee is making some weird assumptions based on not knowing how C3 is set up. Chris is not the person you would look to for theological positions!

    But when it comes to exuding Christlike love, encouragement, grace and pastoral compassion, well, she does exude these qualities. She probably still loves you big time, eh!

    Petty niggles of Crenee include having to know everyone’s name! How a Pastor with a group as large as C3 would be expected to know everyone’s name is beyond me.

    No, Crenee I can excuse for being ignorant, but you know better, I’m sure.

    I love the purity of the Word, and doctrinally sound ministry. I wouldn’t sit under certain people if that was what I was craving, but I also occasionally enjoy encouragement, being loved on and knowing someone thinks I can give life in Jesus a good go. Chris is one of these people.

  163. Powers and abilities? Such as? I think she’s a generous, gregarious person with a big heart. I don’t worship her. She’s kind lady. I’ve seen people’s lives changed for the better under her ministry, and I’ve heard some theologically sound ministry as well. I realise she’s not everyone’s cup of tea. She doesn’t deserve some of the awful things that are said about her though.

  164. Steve – yes, she does if she is in the public arena. And it’s obvious that she has taken this same “message” around the world to other conferences.

    This is a very good example of the Heresy Two Step at play here, (mind you, something we see on a regular basis these days in various churches/denominations everywhere)

    ““The Heresy Two-step starts with two feet on the text. The illusion must be given that the text is going to be taught on. Then a sliding step backward is taken into an abstraction. You move from the text to an idea about the text or to a word in the text. Once the text is abstracted and a general principle or something along these lines is made. You can now wiggle around and go in any direction you want. You can make the text say whatever you want. Instead of teaching the text you are pontificating on this abstraction which was drawn from the text.” Ps.Bryan Wolfmueller

    Who gets to set the agenda here – who gets to set the tone of what the bible actually says? What to leave in, what to leave out? The person telling the story?

    She’s governing how the text is being told rather than what God has actually revealed as the Author of all the biblical text!

    There’s not enough biblical theology to fill a gnat’s navel, for goodness sake!

  165. As I understand it the text talks about a tree planted by the rivers of water, for which there are ample examples to draw from.

    For there is hope for a tree, If it is cut down, that it will sprout again, And that its tender shoots will not cease. Though its root may grow old in the earth, And its stump may die in the ground, yet at the scent of water it will bud and bring forth branches like a plant.

    How can a mortal man claim the same thing. Well he can’t without Christ. Sin will deal the death blow. But the offer of the new birth is like that scent of water to revive the man. And the dream. the vision, the potential of anything to do with our lives in Christ.

    How do you define a seed? It can be anything. What a man sows he’ll reap from. We can split hairs if we attempt to make religious the gospel.

    The seed, when it is sown can, given the right conditions, produce. What does it need to grow? Good earth, water and light. I can’t see that you can’t draw on these illustrations to encourage a person to depend on Christ and on he Spirit of Christ for their life and sustenance, for their survival, revival and the completion of their journey in Christ on the earth.

    Jesus used nature to illustrate all his sermons. Why shouldn’t we?

    That is what I got out of her message and I have been i the same room she preached it in. The essence of the message is sound. The delivery is subject to taste, I agree, but there is something refreshing about a person who is not bound by religion.

  166. What do you think of Paul’s exegesis at 1 Corinthians 14:21?

    In the law it is written: “With men of other tongues and other lips I will speak to this people; And yet, for all that, they will not hear Me,” says the Lord. Therefore tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; but prophesying is not for unbelievers but for those who believe.

    The original text from Isaiah 28:11 refers to an invasion from the Chaldean army upon Israel because they refuse to follow basic precepts from God, even though spells them out line upon line.

    Yet Paul applies this passage to people who speak in tongues as a sign to unbelievers that the Holy Spirit has filled believers.

    Isn’t he taking the passage in Isaiah out of context?

    Or is there another application to prophetic utterances?

  167. Steve, you proved a point to me. You should have been the one giving the message, not a biblically unqualified woman……..

    Chris has taken the “woman thou art loosed” into the realm of absolute silliness and heresy.

  168. I wasn’t invited to give the message. God didn’t give me the message. I heard it and saw it the way it was delivered. From my notes, in reference to the seed, she made it clear that a seed, or the kernel of the seed, has to go into the ground and die before it can produce. But it needs the water of the Spirit to live and thrive.

    Are you in any way artistic? Or are you an organiser?

  169. I’m very artistic (graphic artist by trade before retiring, with artists in family and a grandfather as talented as Norman Lindsay) – and funny thing, extremely organised.

  170. I was quoting from my notes. They were her ideas.

    I am surprised you don’t see the artistic element of Chris’ delivery then, or the context in which it is given, as a part testimony and part exhortation for leaders and pastors.

    O well.

  171. For what it’s worth, I’ve had a quilt displayed at Brentwood Cathedral with the organisers of Epiphany Trust also telling me that it was going to be displayed in the Moses Room in the House of Lords.

    This for a quilt done representing the war and its effects on children in Kosovo, a quilt given as a gift to one of their missionaries about 12 years ago.

  172. I don’t see that a woman is usurping a man’s authority if she is given permission to deliver a message by the leader.

    Most pastor’s wives I know would never teach or preach unless invited by their husbands.

    Even women I know with very large churches who would be considered the main speaker, or acknowledged as the Senior Minister, have the go ahead from their husbands.

    It is a controversial area I know but there have been some significant women throughout history.

    Chris, as you know, does some important work behind the scenes ad is not regarded as the main speaker for C3 by any means, but is highly respected in the flock for her leadership, generosity, love, grace and encouragement.

  173. Steve, seriously, with respect I could never look to that delivery as ” part testimony and part extortion” .

    I can however, open my bible and read Christ’s testimony of Himself and be exhorted by that. At least the content and context is unimpeachable, beyond reproach.

  174. I can however, open my bible and read Christ’s testimony of Himself and be exhorted by that. At least the content and context is unimpeachable, beyond reproach.

    Great. Me too!

    And I can also enjoy hearing someone who’s been through he tough yards of planting a church and the blood, sweat and tears of building it (in Christ, of course (qualification for the religious critics)), and the heart break that goes with some of the criticism, the loss of members through controversy, sickness, strife, or deception, the growing pains, entry into the unknown, mistakes made, wrong choices, big decisions, triumphs, sorrows, victories, growth spurts, changes, and everything else a Pastor and his wife and their children go through to get anywhere, let alone 30 years of sustained and continuous ministry and growth.

    I’d say she’s got something to say, however she puts it over.

    Critics come and go. Like Sanballat.

    Builders always leave some thing to be built upon. Like Nehemiah and Ezra.

  175. You won’t see it there now, it was only on display and 12 years ago. Having received a letter from the organisation that Archbishop Mirdita had come over from Albania to view the display at Brentwood Cathedral (there must have been other items) I have no idea where it is now, would like a photo as I had not photographed the finished work and only have progress drawings.

    The quilt was reproductions in fabric, paint & embroidery of a book called “Early Shadows: Children’s Images of Kosovo”.

    By the way, if you ever find it, let me know. It was originally given by me, to the missionary at a C3 Women’s Conference (back in the day) 🙂

  176. @ Steve – I’ve been mulling over something for quite a while now and that’s the link between the ordination of women and homosexuals. I believe I posted a document a couple of years from from the Lutheran Church that was tracking that development as well.

    Still something I’m researching but so are others….

    http://carm.org/denominations-women-ordination-and-other-errors

    Just letting you know that this is something you and I are going to have to deal with if not already.

  177. Margot, I guess we’ll all have to go Mars Hill.

    I’ve often wondered about the Pentecostal husband and wife routine. Two pastors for the price of one. Or maybe one brain for the price of 5?

    What do you think will happen after gay ministers?

    Ministers married to their horse?

    Doesn’t Archbishop Jensen allow women preachers in his diocese?

  178. ‘et tu Margot’

    Steve, thank you, thank you, thank you. I can legitimately post a link to this classic Carry On line now.

  179. Steve, I am totally of the anti-church buildings brigade, especially when they are the focus of repeated funding drives and the centrepiece of tithing messages week in, week out. You of all people should see through this unbiblical scam, yet you continue to pour scorn and vitriol on those who see fit to out this movement’s quite shocking tactics to raise a buck, by whatever means.

    I find it bewildering that you would expend many hours at the keyboard and in research to flag all the bizarre doctrines and traditions of the Catholic church, and are resolutely obdurate regarding the blatant push to demand 10% gross from the income of every church goer, no matter what your financial disposition, to spend on the latest media gadgetry and building projects. True modern-day cathedral creation if ever I saw one, don’t you agree.

    Once the people are corralled into this expensive, cutting edge environment, they get bombarded with vacuous messages, such as Chris Pringle’s, which major on money extraction and minor on understanding scripture for the advancement of the Body.

    See things through Jesus’s eyes. Did he die and send his Spirit, so his worldwide Body could sit in a funky building and hear largely empty messages from a priest on how we need to give money to the priest or we won’t be blessed. You can’t strip back the faults of RCC and be blind to C3 and its ilk.

    I would wager that the name of Jesus is mentioned perhaps 5x more often in a Catholic service than a C3 version. C3 love talking about God, and too often Jesus gets a quick side bar mention, maybe at the final prayer. My experience only, but if they are carbon copies of each other generally, it will be the same most every C3 service.

  180. To be honest, I couldn’t get through the Chris video. In all fairness though, it’s probably completely different if you are a C3 Pastor and have a long relationship with the Pringles. Otherwise it’s just seems like a whole lot of raving while some guy plays chords in the background….for some reason.

    But like I said, if you had lots of time on your hands, and you were part of the movement and really loved Chris Pringle (not being sarcastic), it would be different.

  181. And while we’re all blissfully off-topic….
    I just looked at another video. The basic spiel by Phil Pringle is that people love spending money on and doing up their house – and then inviting people over.

    In the same way, we should raise lots of money and make a really beautiful “House”, so that we aren’t ashamed, but feel proud to bring people in – who will like it. And so spending 150k on a screen is a good investment because then we can feel proud to bring our friends to the “house” (“House” means “house of God” which means the people of God, but has also come to mean the church building, and both and…but mostly the building??)

    So more people will come and they will give money so in the long run, the 150k screen is a small investment.

    Pringle is actually right. If lots of people give lots of money, and make a nice church (but full of life, music etc), then more people will come. As a business model it’s great. It’s great the most for him of course. Because The more people give, the better the house, the more people come, the more they give ….and his salary, benefits, book, painting sales, etc etc overseas travel increase.

    So it’s good church growth strategy, and good advice for those who want to be the Senior Pastor of a similar church.

    I’m not saying it’s wrong, or sin, or evil – but I will say that it has nothing to do with New Testament Christianity, and I personally don’t feel excited about giving more and more money so that a church building can be really attractive.

    But I’m the eternal idealist/and love the old time pentecostal thinking. i.e It’s not the buildings and the trappings, but the truth of the gospel, the power of the Holy Spirit, and the love of Christians should be enough.

    And if it isn’t enough, you might just find that 10 years down the track when a cooler, swankier, higher tech church opens up, that you’re left with a less friends around, lots of debt to pay off the building and salaries, but you slowly realize that the Senior Pastor and his wife and kids are doing just fine.

    Just sayin.

    In a strange way, it might all lead to “revival” for want of a better word. Think about it. More people knowing that they can start a church, get people tithing, and the more people coming the more money, and the better your own lifestyle – so i can see that increasingly there will be more churches starting all trying their darndest to be appealing. So, probably with all that more people will come to church.

    So, isn’t that a good thing…?
    (that’s part sarcasm, part honest question, part rhetorical)

  182. But, I think Phil Pringle and his wife are good sincere people. They seem to have a good marriage, are very positive and encouraging, and talented. And a man has as much right to teach tithing and giving financially as another man has to teach on his preferred mode of baptism or any other subject.

    And as Steve said, not every message or public sharing at every Christian event has to be an concise exegetical discourse. There’s a place for someone sharing their life experiences whether they be Steve Jobs, Ali, a donut franchise owner or a Pastor’s wife. If I listened to the whole of what Chris said, I’m sure there would have been something I could learn and benefit from.

    just…seems to be so much rambling these days..

    Not that I’d ever ramble..

  183. Wasn’t this supposed to be about gay marriage?

    I go away for a few days and this place goes to the dogs… 🙂

  184. This blog is really all over the place – but it’s cool.

    Pete Seeger as a candidate for the Anti-Christ???
    Loved the Larry Norman video. He was quite a character who was like all of us deeply flawed it seems.

    And Margot, I’m probably more amillenialist than anything else – except that as with most things I conclude that I might be wrong!

    This thread gave me an idea for a blog. Maybe you don’t need categories – just one endless conversation!

    btw is it my imagination or is there a completely disproportion number of British comedy freaks here – or is it just the age group?

  185. Well, there’s a Warragambah Dam overflowing = revival we could discuss? And how we are to judge the prophet/prophecy today, especially if it’s false…

  186. “Are you really a teacher of our nation’s youth?

    Yes…. but nutbag eschatology is no longer part of the curriculum.”

    I obviously have a weird sense of humor – but this exchange is great! 🙂 Bones deserves a free pint for that.
    Classic.

  187. In the same way, we should raise lots of money and make a really beautiful “House”, so that we aren’t ashamed, but feel proud to bring people in – who will like it. And so spending 150k on a screen is a good investment because then we can feel proud to bring our friends to the “house” (“House” means “house of God” which means the people of God, but has also come to mean the church building, and both and…but mostly the building??)

    So more people will come and they will give money so in the long run, the 150k screen is a small investment.

    Nope. I’m over screens. Just let me see the words and put them up in time. I don’t want closeups on the glamorous lead singer. Been part of all that too. Sheesh just give me a guy with a guitar or a piano/organ.

    Reminds me of when I was working in the Anglican Church in Brisbane. Archbishop Hollingsworth made it his vision to complete the new Brisbane Cathedral which cost millions. The fact that most of the Anglican churches were dirt poor at the time didn’t faze him. The monument was as much to him then to God.

    In the end Justice caught up with him.

  188. You think so? I thought it was a media witch-hunt because he was made GG by John Howard. Oh, well.

    Wouldn’t he be in amongst the group of leaders who neglected to properly deal with or sort out the pedophiles in the ‘Church’, which is a cross-over comment from the other thread related to the so-called ‘clergy’ who couldn’t be trusted with children who seem to have been hanging around either the Catholic or Anglican crowd, and had their activities covered up by people in senior positions?

    Still he had a lot on his mind with the building of the Cathedral and all, and perhaps the Eternal Virgin was having a holiday and couldn’t hear his prayers.

    Or maybe justice was served after-all.

    One has to ask, though, why is it that most of the Anglican churches were dirt poor?

    Do you have a solution to that question, a demographic perhaps, a reason for the inability of the local flock to maintain their own premises?

  189. Aaah Steve’s favourite topic – attacking other denominations.

    When Hillsong or C3 open a church in say Chinchilla or Childers you can discuss demographics.

    How many C3 and Hillsong churches are in Sydney and Brisbane compared to Anglican?

    Hollingworth took his eye off the ball and that affected his judgement including ignoring the sins of paedophile clergy.

    Of course Houston should be next.

    As for a solution – why don’t you ask Dr Phil. Maybe a $150 k screen in every church.

    Maybe churches aren’t meant to be ‘rich’.

    You don’t seem yourself since Zorro tore you a new one.

  190. Zorro? Haven’t seen him for a while. My offer is on the table.

    The only thing he tore was a hamstring getting out of here.

    Aaah Steve’s favourite topic – attacking other denominations.

    But you see how you’ve reverted to lying lately.

    I am a supporter of other denominations. Always have been.

    But the truth is that pedophiles were, at one time, notoriously safe within Catholic confines, and the Anglicans had issues too, including, as you readily admit, Ab. Hollingsworth.

    That is not an attack on either. Just an observation. You tried to make it a financial issue. I pointed out that it was more than this.

    If the Catholics would only get the majority of their doctrine to comply with the Bible I’d be happy to support them.

    The Anglicans, on the whole, are wonderful. In fact I was in one of their churches at a meeting just last week. I was saved through the witness of an Anglican minister.

    But my doctrine is from the Bible, not institutions.

  191. Not that Ab. Hollingsworth was ever accused of anything but ‘taking his eye off the ball’. But it was for rather a long time, don’t you think?

    I think he’s a basically decent man who was a product of his times and swept things under the carpet which should never have been allowed in the first place.

    You raised the issue of pedophiles in the church, and the gay clubs being safer places than churches, but the only churches these things were permitted to such a degree were Catholic.

    Houston was stood down.

    Many Catholic priests who were known abusers are still priests.

  192. “Houston was stood down” … after 30 years. And only because the victim had to go to the media after having tried unsuccessfully to take the issue confidentially to the church.

    And then Brian gave his best Colonel Klink impression “I knew nothink. Nothink…”

    The issue is a problem for all churches, the only difference is the way you excuse one and point the finger at the other.

  193. I have already mentioned Frank several times over time on this blog and condemned his actions, so don’t tell lies. I have never excused him for anything, or Brian Houston. Or maybe you can show us where? No, just another fabrication of the the truth to suit your own aims.

    Thing is, do you have any more Australian Pentecostals to accuse of such pedophile actions that you’d rather send your sons to a gay club than a Pentecostal church?

    I’m sure over time there have been a handful of really bad pastors, but I can’t recall pedophile Pentecostal pastors other than Frank.

    But Catholic priests who are exposed as abusers…where would you like to start?

  194. That’s what Bones said, wazza. He’d rather send his children to a gay premises than a Pentecostal church. That’s what I’m dealing with here.

    What about you? Would you send your sons to a gay club?

  195. That’s what Bones said, wazza. He’d rather send his children to a gay premises than a Pentecostal church.

    Hahaha.

    Where did I say that?

    My kids are going to a vacation Bible school organised by our Pentecostal church* next week.

    I’ve never been to a gay club.

    And I wouldn’t take my kids there.

    *Note: the previous children’s minister (and brother of the pastor’s wife) was not asked back. Then was front page news for fondling minors for which he pleaded guilty. No explanation to the church of course.

    Steve beats that strawman up.

    Take that strawman, and that and that.

    Did you see how much Steve disses out on da strawman?

  196. I think they would be less likely to be theologically, spiritually and financially abused there than at C3.

    Can you give me a link to Bones’ original statement. I cant see it on this thread.

  197. “Ultimately…who cares which denomination it was that held the larger number of pedophile ministers? ”

    True.

    It’s really hard for me to say this as I always liked Houston. But his case shows me how much we like to talk about the bad eggs in groups we don’t like, and use examples to smear the whole group, whereas we don’t with people we like. Steve, Houston was not stood down immediately. There were people obviously who knew about stuff who let kept it quiet. Basically, if Houston were a Catholic priest, and especially one has high up and revered in the Catholic church as he was in the AOG, his sins would have been in the papers continually. He never even went to court. And he is still spoken of in admiring terms and mentioned for all his good points. People can’t and don’t talk about Catholic priests guilty of the same things. You say it was much more widespread in the catholic church, but you are forgetting that there is one or more catholic churches in every town on the planet almost, and they’ve been around for, well a very long time. Houston was at the very heights and center of the AOG. If someone wanted to attack the AOG the way they do the Catholics, they’d be saying that the whole movement must be rotten for the most influential leader to have been guilty of such sin – and to have not dealt with it until he was forced to. And in the end, he was looked after by the church, defended by it’s lawyers, and spoken of in such admiring terms by everyone.

    Why and how a man like that could be involved in that kind of sin is beyond me. But if you want to excuse it by saying that he himself was abused and he also did great things for God which shouldn’t be forgotten, then why aren’t Catholics allowed to have the same mercy directed at their priests?

    He was stood down – but only because there were people breathing down their necks.

    Terrible sad case, and personally hit me for a six. And who knows, it took a long time for people to start coming forward publicly about abuse at the hands of priests. Who knows what would happen if everyone went public with abuse at the hands of evangelicals and pentecostals?

    Remember, there was hardly anyone more well respected in pentecosalism in Australia than Houston. They don’t have Popes, but if they did he was close to it. If the Pope was caught with the same sins, anti-catholics would be using that sin as evidence that the whole tree was rotten.

    So, I’m not interested in recounting the historical sins of the catholics. You’re left with Jesus saying “Which denomination that is without sin cast the first stone” – and there being no takers.

  198. That might be ok for you Greg, but my youngest isn’t 2 yet and the oldest of the five is 8.

    Now if you don’t mind I’m going to drop them off at the Blue Oyster Bar.

  199. Like I said, that’s really hard to say, because I’ve heard him speak, met him, heard people I respect say how much they respected him.

    It’s hard for me to think he should have been jailed and so too anyone who knew about his past but didn’t report it to the police.

    But if it were up to me, I’d hardly have anyone put in jail. I don’t think it does much good. But that’s another topic.

  200. “but my youngest isn’t 2 yet and the oldest of the five is 8.”

    So there you have it. Bones is catholic after all….

    Anyway, looks like you’ve decided to redirect our passions into blog commentating. 🙂

  201. Don’t feel too bad, Q.

    I took over from this guy.

    John Litton Elliott, a church elder who later became an Anglican priest, pleads guilty to 10 counts of sodomy and 18 counts of indecent treatment of boys aged 10 to 13.

    A lovely guy, Spirit filled and married. More than an acquaintance. He liked little boys and is in jail where he should be.

    As a CEBS leader (CEBS – Anglican Boys Society, Anglican version of scouts) leader, I took some of my teenagers to a big national gathering in Sydney. After what I saw there I wasn’t surprised that some of the other leaders were found to be in a child abuse ring.

    CEBS, a Christian ministry for boys which taught them bushcraft, leadership, camping and the Gospel, of which we had over 50 boys attending is now a source of shame in Qld.

    I know of others too. Who aren’t RC.

  202. Well I agree it doesn’t matter where they attend. Churches and schools will always be targets. That’s why we provide safeguards.

    The RC concept of forced celibacy has never been wise.

    I’ve about had it with the us vs them thing here, though.

    Them being Pentecostals.

    I don’t care if Bones claims to be one, or s&p, or whoever. The attitude has been disgraceful.

    The Catholic thing was largely to demonstrate what it’s like to be on the end of it, and Bones, Greg, and to a lesser extent, wazza complied.

    I never meant to start a religious war.

    I don’t think, at this stage, it would matter what I said.

    But I do stand by the posts which outline Catholic error.

  203. Bones, I just don’t understand that stuff. But the more I hear and read, the less i trust anyone. Never been abused in anyway myself, so until recently I honestly thought the numbers were exaggerated. But now, question everyone. The football coach in the US (don’t know if you follow US news) he’s another one that seemed like the last person to do that kind of thing. Scary.

  204. “No man or woman of God, whether their doctrine is accurate or not […]”.

    Well there you have it, ladies and gentlemen: Steve thinks that a “man of God” doesn’t need to have accurate doctrine. Of all the extraordinarily spiritually dull statements that Steve has made, that one has to be the most telling.

    So now we can understand why Steve won’t admit that he knows that Phil Pringle is a heretic – it’s because he doesn’t see that as a problem. Steve must therefore think that God doesn’t see it as a problem, which tells me that Steve is not serving the same God that I serve.

    It’s clear that Steve is blissfully unaware that a man’s doctrine and character are inextricably linked. Bad doctrine can only take root and grow in poor soil; even the most casual of observers can understand this. Steve simply hasn’t a clue, and his amazing degree of ignorance is, sadly, the entirely predictable outcome of being wedded to C3 “theology”.

  205. “[…] I’ve three times offered to engage Zorro on a C3 thread.”

    I will continue to engage you at time and place of my choosing, and in the manner that I see fit. I fully understand that you don’t care to hear irrefutable truths stated in a manner that emphasizes their incontrovertibility; however you must understand that this is entirely your problem, and not at all mine.

    “[…] i am known […]”

    Yes, I know that you are “Steve”. Surely there can’t be too many “Steves” in the world, can there?

    Seriously though, we all know you by your vituperative attacks against anyone who dares to question the infallibility of that esteemed personage – that most righteous of pastors – Pope Phil. In fact, one could even swear that your blind spot is getting bigger.

    “[…] I have indicated which church I attend […]”

    You carry on as though the church one attends is of the utmost importance, but those of us who know better understand that it is one’s relationship with God that matters.

    Did you know that people who prattle on endlessly about their undying allegiance to a church or denomination – or, more particularly, to the leaders thereof – are at best a little unbalanced, and at worst are caught up in a cult? C3 is nothing more than a gnostic greasy pole.

  206. “Zorro did a similar cut’n’paste to make something I said into nothing I said by pulverising both the complete sentence and the context.”

    I would no doubt excel if I deigned to attend a C3 “bible college”.

  207. “My offer is on the table.”

    Yes, and your theology is in the toilet and your brains are nowhere to be found.

    Maybe more energetic fist-pumping will put things to right.

  208. “[…] I also occasionally enjoy encouragement, being loved on […]”

    So do you have any nice stories to tell us about ear rings, Steve?

  209. “I think he’s a basically decent man who […] swept things under the carpet”.

    That’s the sort of statement one would expect from someone who is entirely lacking in moral sensibilities.

    Just so you know, those who protect abusers of children also enable them, and they share fully with them in their guilt. If you want to know how God views such people, you should listen to your “leaders” a little less and read your Bible a little more.

  210. “C3 is nothing more than a gnostic greasy pole.”

    Is that a Zorro original? I might use that one day.

  211. You havr s foul and reprehensible habit of cutting people’s comments to fit your ugly respobnse.

    If you’e going to quote me at least have the decency to use the whole phrase so people can judge for themselves what I am sayng and not what you cntrive with your juvenile contentions.

    I actually said about Ab. Hollingsworth:

    I think he’s a basically decent man who was a product of his times and swept things under the carpet which should never have been allowed in the first place.

    You turned t into:

    “I think he’s a basically decent man who […] swept things under the carpet”.

    Which completely alters the meaning.

    You are indeed a fraud. In more than one away.

  212. Back to the original thread

    Home Office Equal Marriage Consultation
    Formal critique of the Church of England’s submission (11 June 2012)

    This Formal Critique was prepared at the National Secular Society’s request by Dr. Ronan McCrea Ph.D., M.Sc., LL.B., Barrister and Lecturer in Law at University College London, Academic Fellow of the Honourable Society of the Inner Temple, who litigates cases in areas related to his expertise before the European Court of Human Rights, and is author of “Religion and the Public Order of the European Union”.

    25 June, 2012

    1. The distinctiveness of religious and civil marriage

    The Church of England’s response to the Government’s consultation states that “the consultation paper wrongly implies that there are two categories of marriage – civil and religious” and that “In law, there is one social institution called marriage which can be entered into through either a religious or civil ceremony”.The National Secular Society notes, in response, that there is a legal institution called marriage which can be entered into either through a civil or, in certain circumstances, through a religious ceremony. This does not mean that the legal definition of marriage and religious definition of marriage must be the same for all purposes. Since the introduction of civil marriage in the
    Marriage Act (England and Wales) 1836, the law has envisaged the possibility that individuals who are not married in the eyes of the Church may be married in the eyes of the law. Divorced
    individuals who subsequently marry for a second time while their former spouse is still alive, are, for example, married in the eyes of the law and the State but not in the eyes of the Roman
    Catholic Church. The solemnisation of non-Christian and non-Jewish religious marriages is not recognised by the State, so in these cases generally both religious and State ceremonies are held. Quite properly, the State maintains its own definition of marriage and leaves religions to define marriage for their own purposes. The fact that, in some circumstances, it accords religious organisations the right to marry couples for both legal and religious purposes does not mean that the religious definition of marriage must always mirror the legal definition.

    By failing to distinguish between social, religious and legal institutions of marriage, the Church of England response confuses the issues at hand. The legal definition of marriage is an important element of the social institution of marriage but the two are not interchangeable. Polygamous couples that are married in the eyes of their faith may be regarded as married by many in their community and social circle, but will not be seen as married in the eyes of the law. Similarly, divorced Roman Catholics in second marriages will be regarded as married to each other by the law, but will not be seen as married to each other by many in their religious community.

    It will undoubtedly be the case that the legal recognition of same sex marriage will increase social recognition of the relationships of same sex couples as equivalent to those of married
    heterosexual couples as well as broader social acceptance of homosexuality. This may be a social development that the hierarchy of the Church of England will regret, but that provides no grounds for asserting that the religious institution of marriage, as defined by the Church of England for its members, will be affected by the Government’s proposal to legalise same sex marriage.

    2. Performance of Same Sex Marriages by Religious Bodies

    The Church of England’s claim that a challenge to the prohibition on religious bodies performing same sex marriages may be successfully challenged in the European Court of Human Rights
    provides no reasons not to proceed with the legalisation of same sex marriage. Any successful court challenge would apply only to those denominations that wished to carry out same sex
    marriages. As an organisation opposed to same sex marriage, the Church of England would be unaffected.

    The National Secular Society is of the view that when the State allows religious bodies to register marriages, a sincere commitment to religious freedom requires those religious bodies that wish to carry out same sex marriages to be able to do so.

    Religious freedom and, the Society adds, the principles of secularism, dictate that religious bodies that do not wish to conduct same sex marriages should not be forced to do so. The Church of England fails to provide any evidence that they are likely to be forced to carry out such marriages by the European Court. The European Court has consistently recognised that the freedom of religion protected by Article 9 applies equally to state churches as to other religious organisations (see Knudsen v Norway (1986) EHRR 45). English law has also recognised religious conscience in the context of the State Church and marriage by providing in Section 8 of the Matrimonial
    Causes Act (England and Wales) 1965, that Church of England clergy are permitted to refuse to solemnise the marriage of a divorcee whose former spouse is still alive.

    Even taken at its highest, the Church of England’s assertion that the possible future lifting of the prohibition on religious same-sex weddings means that “further legislative provision” would be
    required “to protect the Church of England and other religious bodies” merely means that the Church’s position can be protected by minor amendments to the legislation, which, given the Government’s assurances repeated by a Minister to Parliament, it seems inconceivable that it would not undertake to table. This is therefore not a reason to abandon the entire project of legalising same-sex marriage.

    3. Same Sex Marriage and Establishment:

    The establishment of the Church of England has been defended on grounds of tradition and on the basis that it causes no real harm to individuals of other faiths or no faith. The National Secular Society does not believe legalisation of same sex marriage is inconsistent with the established status of the Church of England.

    However, if it is the case, as asserted by the Church of England’s response to the consultation, that establishment is inconsistent with the legalisation of same-sex marriage, then the burden
    placed on individuals who are not part of the Church of England or who do not wish to follow its teachings is considerably greater than previously realised. If establishment functions to prevent
    the enactment of particular laws in contentious areas of social policy, then it becomes indefensible on democratic grounds.

    http://www.secularism.org.uk/uploads/formal-critique-of-cofe-equal-marriage-submission.pdf

  213. What slippery slope?

    Three-person civil union sparks controversy in Brazil

    Some religious groups have expressed anger over the move

    Brazil gay couples get new rights
    A notary in the Brazilian state of Sao Paulo has sparked controversy by accepting a civil union between three people.

    Public Notary Claudia do Nascimento Domingues has said the man and two women should be entitled to family rights.

    She says there is nothing in law to prevent such an arrangement.

    But the move has angered some religious groups, while one lawyer described it as “absurd and totally illegal”.

    The three individuals, who have declined to speak to the press, have lived in Rio de Janeiro together for three years and share bills and other expenses.

    Ms Domingues says they have already opened a joint bank account, which is also not prohibited by any law.

    We are only recognising what has always existed, we are not inventing anything”

    According to Globo TV, the union was formalised three months ago, but only became public this week.

    Nathaniel Santos Batista Junior, a jurist who helped draft the document, said the idea was to protect their rights in case of separation or death of a partner, Globo reports.

    Ms Domingues, who is based in the Sao Paulo city of Tupa, said the move reflected the fact that the idea of a “family” had changed.

    “We are only recognising what has always existed. We are not inventing anything.”

    “For better or worse, it doesn’t matter, but what we considered a family before isn’t necessarily what we would consider a family today.”

    But lawyer Regina Beatriz Tavares da Silva told the BBC it was “absurd and totally illegal”, and “something completely unacceptable which goes against Brazilian values and morals”.

    Ms da Silva, who is president of the Commission for the Rights of the Family within the Institute of Lawyers, says the union will not be allowed to remain in place.

    Some religious groups have also voiced criticism of the move.

    While Ms Domingues has approved the union, it is not clear whether courts, service providers and private companies such as health insurance providers will accept the ruling.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-19402508?

  214. Plea to overturn war hero’s homosexuality conviction

    The Enigma code-breaker Alan Turing should be posthumously pardoned for his historic conviction for homosexuality, Stephen Hawking and other leading scientists have urged.
    In a letter to The Daily Telegraph in London, the distinguished physicist and 10 other signatories said the Prime Minister, David Cameron, should “formally forgive” Turing, whose work at Bletchley Park is widely credited with having helped speed the end of the Second World War.
    Turing died from cyanide poisoning in 1954 after being convicted of gross indecency at a time when homosexuality was still illegal. An inquest found he had killed himself.
    Lord Sharkey, a Liberal Democrat peer and one of the signatories, introduced a private member’s bill in the Lords to grant him an official pardon earlier this year.

    Other signatories include the Astronomer Royal, Lord Rees, the head of the Royal Society, Sir Paul Nurse, and Baroness Trumpington, who worked for Turing during the war.
    Describing him as “one of the most brilliant mathematicians of the modern era”, the letter pays tribute to his “astonishing achievement” in breaking the German Enigma code.
    “Yet successive governments seem incapable of forgiving his conviction for the then crime of being a homosexual,” the letter says.
    “We urge the Prime Minister to exercise his authority and formally forgive the iconic British hero.”
    In 2009 the then prime minister, Gordon Brown, made a posthumous apology to Turing, describing his treatment as “appalling”, but he was not officially pardoned.
    A later appeal for a pardon was turned down by the Coalition in February.
    The Justice Minister, Lord McNally, said the case was shocking but a pardon was “not considered appropriate as Alan Turing was properly convicted of what at the time was a criminal offence”.
    If Lord Sharkey’s bill passes both houses of Parliament before the end of this session, an official pardon will be granted without government consent.
    But Lord Grade, who drafted the letter, said he hoped Mr Cameron would use his authority to pardon Turing, who is regarded as one of the founders of computer science.
    He said Turing’s “brutal” treatment was “something we as a country should be ashamed of”.
    There was no reason that everyone historically convicted of homosexuality should not be pardoned, he said.
    The government introduced legislation this year to allow people convicted of homosexuality to have the offence removed from their criminal record.
    Lord Grade said: “I do not think anybody would object [to granting a pardon]. Any right-minded citizen of this country ought to be keen to see a hero recognised

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/world/plea-to-overturn-turings-homosexuality-conviction-20121214-2be4d.html#ixzz2F1P3zwDT

  215. So now in UK the gay community is readying itself to put pressure on the Church of England to endorse their same sex marriages once the motion has gone through the House of Lords after successfully negotiating the House of Commons with the proviso that the Church of England endorse same sex marriage alongside heterosexual marriage. In fact it will all be one marriage, whatever the person’s sexual orientation.

    Who was it that said they’d never press for church weddings if only they were granted same sex marriage?

    Pretty well a done deal in UK.

    What comes next down the slippery slope? Will it be polygamy or multi-transexual marriages.

    And what will you be teaching your children as they grow up, especially Christian families. Will you break the law by saying Gay marriage is not Biblical?

    Or will you be saying to your children that it’s perfectly acceptable for them to have a homosexual or lesbian relationship once they reach the age of consent?

    Will yah?

  216. I saw the new movie Lincoln the other day. Kept thinking of this thread. The slippery slope argument was the main argument for keeping blacks as slaves.

  217. You were one of the claimants saying they would never force pastors into marrying them.

    Do you think the polygamy crew will now get their way, bearing in mind that Muslims are already pushing for it under Shari’ah and Shari’ah is already a fact of life in UK?

    And why shouldn’t transexuals be considered ‘people’ once marriage is defined as being between two people?

    How long will it be before the ‘two’ is dropped?

    Soon you could be looking at an entire clan being married to each other, adolescents and all.

    “As in the day of Noah…”

  218. Church of England insists it will not have to host civil partnerships

    Vicars will not be forced to hold civil partnership ceremonies just as “a gentleman’s outfitter is not required to supply women’s clothes”, the Church of England has said.

    New rules come into effect on Monday that allow same-sex couples to hold the events, which give them the same legal rights as married in couples, in places of worship.

    There have been fears that religious organisations will face legal action if they refuse to register civil partnerships on their premises, even though the Government has insisted there will be no compulsion to do so.

    Related Articles

    Now the established church, which opposes a “blurring” of the line between marriage and civil partnerships, has written to the almost 500 members of its governing body to give its opinion on the “possible controversy”.

    It states that “no Church of England religious premises may become ‘approved premises’ for the registration of civil partnerships” without a formal decision made by the General Synod, made up of clergy, bishops and lay people.

    The two-page briefing note also declares the “clear view” of the Church’s lawyers that its opposition to the move does not constitute unlawful discrimination under Labour’s far-reaching Equality Act, which gives minority groups the right to equal treatment.

    It argues that churches which allow heterosexual couples to marry are “not concerned” with facilities to register civil partnerships for same-sex ones, and that the law does not require them to provide additional services for other groups.

    “Thus, for example, a gentlemen’s outfitter is not required to supply women’s clothes.

    “A children’s book shop is not required to stock books that are intended for adults.

    “And a church that provides a facility to marry is not required to provide a facility to same-sex couples for registering civil partnerships.”

    However the Church admits that this argument only holds while marriage and civil partnership remain separate services.

    “If Parliament were in due course to legislate for same-sex marriage, as recently suggested by the Prime Minister, we would of course be in new territory.

    “But that is a separate issue which would have to be addressed in the course of that new legislation.”

    Several Tory backbenchers, led by the Roman Catholic MP Edward Leigh, have signed an Early Day Motion calling for the new regulations to be scrapped, partly because they have not been debated fully in the Commons.

    So far just four small independent churches and two Quaker congregations have said they plan to host civil partnerships, prompting concern that same-sex couples who want to hold the events in places of worship will be left disappointed.

  219. You’re somewhat behind the time, Greg.

    That was civil partnerships. This week legislation passed to allow same-sex marriage. It effectively means marriage has been redefined. Included was legislation which requires the Church of England to comply.

    Now it may be that a priest can refuse to marry a gay coupe, but it is already being touted by gays that they will challenge this.

    Sliding, sliding!

    What are you telling your children, Greg?

    What is your plan for the day you tell them the birds and the bees? Will it be the birds and the birds, or the bees and the bees, or the birds the bees and any other critter they have a loving relationship with, say a fish, or a vole?

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