"I went to Jerusalem to become acquainted (Gk. istoria) with Cephas" - Paul's words from Galatians 1:18.

When an Atheist Makes More Sense than Louie Giglio

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Louie Giglio is a wonderful man, a great evangelical speaker, and is doing a fabulous work among the youth of our nation. Louie spoke at Emmanuel years ago, long before he became well-known in our evangelical community. Louie is a captivating speaker and we sincerely desire the Lord's continued blessing upon his life and ministry. This post is not intended to be critical of either Louie or his ministry; it is written as an encouragement for Christians, particularly young ones, to be cautious about swallowing what you hear from great, evangelical speakers "hook, line and sinker." For those of you love to fish, you know that if the hook, line and sinker are all swallowed, the fish is often unintentionally gutted and killed trying to retrieve the items.

The embedded video above is Louie speaking to thousands of young people on the subject of laminin. Laminin, in essence, is the "glue" that holds the biological universe together, including your body. Louie has toured the United States and spoken to thousands of young people, telling them that laminin is designed by God as a molecular cross--meaning the cross of Christ holds everything together. The best way to get an understanding of his concept is to watch the video.

Recently, I came across another video, produced by an atheist who, unlike me, is mocking Louie for his laminin speech. Normally, I would never agree with an atheist bent on minimizing the influence of an evangelical brother, but frankly, the atheist makes a good point. He posits that laminin has a closer resemblance to a cadeceus. The atheist suggests that flashing a photograph of a double helix laminin in front of thousands of young people should remind them of the magic wand of Hermes, not the cross of Jesus Christ.

The atheist rightly concludes that someone could just as easily point to laminin and urge people to follow the Greek gods. Ironically, it was through closely observing nature and the heavens that the Greeks created their list of multiple gods. The atheist's/humanist's video can be seen below.



One of the reasons I believe Bill Gothard got way off track is because he began pointing people to "nature" and left off the sound expositional/exegetical teaching of God's word. When an evangelical points people to the animal kingdom and deduces Christian "principles" by which they are to live, rather than pointing them to the simple (yet profound) teaching of the sacred text, there will soon be trouble within the hearts of the hearers. When an evangelical begins to point people to look within the toilet to see whether or not excrement "floats or sinks," rather than pointing people to the inspired and living Word of God, there will soon be cracks within Christendom. Likewise, when one of the more prominent evangelicals among us begins pointing impressionable young people to pictures of nature for "confirmation" of their faith, rather than directing them to be "workmen rightly dividing the word of truth," we might discover a generation arises that is unable to give an answer for the hope that is within them.

There is no understanding of the gospel of God apart from divine verbal or written revelation. Nature does not reveal the God who saves sinners. The holy Scriptures alone reveal for us the nature of a gracious God. Further, confirmation of our faith in this gracious God comes from our understanding of His specific revelation (the written word of God), not our understanding of His general revelation (nature).

"The New Testament emphasizes God's redemptive grace as decisively manifest in Christ, that Jesus was "put to death for our sins" and was raised to put us right with God (Rom. 4:25; cf. 1 Pet. 2:24, 3:18). Forgiveness of sins without substitution and satisfaction is biblically inconceivable for it would impugn God's justice (Rom. 3:21-26)." --- Carl Henry (See God, Revelation, and Authority Vol. 6: The God Who Stands and Stays, Waco, TX: Word Books, Publisher, 1983 p. 364)
Because biblical understanding is far more important to our faith, I hope and pray this generation of young people becomes more inspired by an excellent exposition of God's Word than an inspirational talk on laminin.

In His Grace,

Wade

108 comments:

greg.w.h said...

Because Christians generally are weak intellectually, we easily fall prey to snake oil salesmen. Unfortunately, both Giglio and Gothard seem to be more interested in their celebrity and fame than in reason. That Christians find that attractive is a source of great shame for those of us who were trained in the sciences (though we are not "Christian Scientists", I have to be careful to point out. ;)

One of the more bonehead ones from Gothard was his claim that rock music is based on african drum rhythms and since the ones who created those rhythms weren't saved, they're heavily influenced by Satan and, therefore, rock music is satanic. The most embarrassing part of it was that my mom bought that reasoning. That is shamanistic reasoning and Christians ought to avoid buying into it.

But generally Christians reach so hard for self-validation of their decision to follow Christ that they will accept pretty much anything that a recognized leader tells them. Instead, we ought to be like the Bereans--as Paul commended us to be--and search Scripture to compare what we are taught to what we find there.

Greg Harvey

P.S. Yes, the character cards that Gothard sold were very shamanistic in comparing animals to character traits that we should develop. That is so close to being a totem as to scare one with any exposure to shamanism. Yet Christians drank it up and I suspect more than a few have a quite a bit of it on their shelves at home. Not saying what he did was completely wrong, just that it seemed a lot more about him than the Bible.

Darby Livingston said...

I've seen similar attempts to strengthen the faith of Christians in a video reporting to show the sight of the Red Sea crossing and Noah's Ark. As Jesus said, They have Moses and prophets. If they won't believe them, neither will they believe if one returns from the dead.

Salvation is of the Lord and faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. You're right, Wade. The Word that never returns void doesn't really need any help.

Wade Burleson said...

Greg,

I think I agree with most of what you say except maybe for one point. You mention:

Both Giglio and Gothard seem to be more interested in their celebrity and fame than in reason.

That seems to go more toward character and motive, and my post is about their teaching. I would object to the above statement for two reasons:

(1). Having myself been numerously accused of the same thing you allege in Gothard and Giglio, I can sympathize with those whose motives are being questioned. I would think motives are hidden, and only I and God know mine, as only Gothard and Giglio and God (sounds like a singing group) know theirs. I know you said, seem, but I prefer that we stay away from assigning motives.

(2). I think both mean care about reason. It's just their reasononing seems unreasonable. Smile.

In other words, the problem I have with your statement is motive and character. To me, those things should not be questioned. Taking a few liberties with MLK, I'll put it like this:

It's not the content of one's character I'm addressing, but the content of one's teaching!"

I always learn from your comments. Thanks for writing and blessings to you.

wade

Wade Burleson said...

Darby,

Agreed.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

As one who frequently disagrees on here allow me to continue in like manner. Signs and wonders are not necessary for strengthening faith, but can allow the believer to, even for a moment, bask in the glory of God. I am personally amazed at the symbolism of laminin. I do not personally believe that the entire structure of the molecule needs to be dissected, but rather the general overall, first impression--that of a cross--tends to make one smile, be it God's intent or not.

Take for instance the placement of the tribes around the Tabernacle in the book of Numbers. If one sticks to a linear directional placement, a clear cross is formed, and when the Shekinah glory came to rest on the Mercy Seat, it did so in the middle a huge cross in the wilderness.

I will take joy in that even though many do not. I am not advocating things like "the Bible Code" or other out of context symbolic referents from the OT or even in Revelation. But once in a while "creation declares the glory of God" to such an extent that it makes this 5 point Calvinist smile.

Now, as with the second YOOTOOB vid, I agree, it’s NOT "all about the laminin."

It may not even be for you and me. But I am thinking that there is some scientist out there who cannot get that image of the cross out of his or her mind. Creation declares the glory of God.


And it WILL! Even when we do not.


K


PS: That God that Wade has discovered YOOTOOB!!! :)

greg.w.h said...

Wade:

I know what you want me to admit: that I've judged the men without knowing them adequately. I didn't do it lightly and in Gothard's case it is entirely deserved in my opinion.

I'll recant the comment with respect to Giglio, though, and simply reply to it in the same way I'd like to reply to Kevin:

When I cross my shoe laces to tie them, they make the form of the cross. When I write in block letters, lower case 't's are in the shape of the cross. The origin of a two-dimensional, Cartesian graph is in the shape of a cross.

While I can privately smile at seeing that (and have during various points in my life when I first noticed these things), I have a very difficult time not treating the repeated discovery of patterns like that as the same kind of disorder that is pictured in A Beautiful Mind. It is, perhaps, not unlike a Christian praying for their favorite sports team to win or to find a more favorable spot in a parking lot.

Leading believers to search for that kind of ikonography (yes, I spelled it with a 'k' on purpose) might be God's intent. But I think we sometimes turn it into a strange--if not silly--kind of superstition. And I know for a fact that non-believers find it quaint if not odd.

Hopefully that sharpens my criticism from being merely critical to being a bit more informative about what bugs me about it.

Greg Harvey

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Greg,

I have never personally prayed for a parking place. I park in the same place at Wal-Mart every time I go. It is the same parking place to the side of the building where no one else goes, I can enter through the Tire Lube Express and bam, there is sporting goods. (I do not mind checking out groceries from the other end and walking out the front door all the way around to my truck. In fact I rather like it. But I can tell you that my mother has prayed a many times for a parking place. And many times the Lord has honored her request. She has taught me in those little circumstances that:

1. God is real
2. God answers prayer
3. nothing is too small a request for God
4. God loves to be needed
5. God loved to please His people

Now I would likely not use praying for parking places or laminin in an exegetical sermon outline, but I might "compare" stories someday with a brother or sister as we "bask in the glory of God" together.

:)

PS: Greg, do not be so hasty to negate the real origins of out english letter "T" It has its origins to the Greek letter "T"(Tau) and has a rather interesting history. You might be open to looking that up someday.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

PSS: Greg,

I am not sure if your "funny" in spelling iconogrophy as "ikonography" was in reference to me: "K" But here the history of the word "icon."

It comes from the Greek word

eikon (using the "k", kappa, and a long "o"): meaning image or likeness.

So you were more right than you realized.

Christiane said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
WTJeff said...

The Passion movement the Lord started through Louis Giglio over 15 years ago has done as much to further missional Christianity as any event, teacher, preacher, seminary professor, or laymen sacrificially living out their faith. For that reason, I think it's important to distinguish that Giglio's teaching as of late hasn't centered on turning to nature over biblical fidelity. This is one session he taught, probably numerous times across the country, and the sum and substance of his ministry shouldn't be lumped in with the likes of Gothard based on it.

Whether you like it or dislike it, it seems more care could have been taken in this post distinguish this one session from the rest of Giglio's ministry.

Christiane said...

'IN HIM,
ALL THINGS HOLD TOGETHER. . . '
from the Book of Colossians
(1:17)


I think the discussion of 'laminin' is interesting. I am not familiar with the chemistry involved, but the statement about the 'cross of Christ' compared to a molecular 'cross', is not found in scripture, as such.

What IS FOUND in Scripture is the reference in Colossians 1:17

"He (Christ) is before all things, and in him all things hold together."

So beautiful this verse is, in all of its implications for our personal existence:
If Christ, the Lord of Life, removes His Hand from us, we would cease to exist,
He is that close to us. He is that close to all who live.

The Judaic tradition honors the Creator as tje ‘Breathe of Life’. The rabbis teach that each time we breathe, we are to be consciously honoring Him who sustains our being.

Imagine this.
The Scriptures, being in tune with Creation, and with nature,. are awaiting discovery.
We just do not understand all the details of Creation, which contains so much that to us appears to be hidden. The ancients would say that Creation contains the secrets of the Universe. The German word for 'secret' is 'geheimnisvoll', which means 'full of mystery.
And we, also made by the Creator and placed in the midst of it, have been designed by Him to be ‘curious’: we are made for a reason to be 'full of wondering'.
Thomas Aquinas was not the first to understand and to teach that we can know of God's existence from the observation of His Creation.

God, in His infinite mercy, did not leave atheists without a way to find Him.

Wade Burleson said...

Greg,

Well stated, and, articulate as usual.

Wade

Bob Cleveland said...

Unless I'm misreading something, the actual shape of the laminin molecule is not the form of a cross. That's how scientists diagram it. Physically, according to what I've seen, it's an arrangement with three short legs and one long one. The pictures don't seem to look anything like the diagrams.

God says that those who haven't seen, yet believe, are blessed, but folks do seem to desire seeing, anyway. I think that's what this deal is about.

Sola scrptura? I hope so, but....

Wade Burleson said...

WTJeff,

Whether you like it or dislike it, it seems more care could have been taken in this post distinguish this one session from the rest of Giglio's ministry.

I don't disagree with your comment. I thought the first few sentences of the post were doing what you desired to see. In hindsight, I could have been more specific and said something like the following:

The Passion movement the Lord started through Louis Giglio over 15 years ago has done as much to further missional Christianity as any event, teacher, preacher, seminary professor, or laymen sacrificially living out their faith

But the above sounds a little like hyperbole to me (which is not unusual for me), though I'm not in any disagreement with the sentiment.

Christiane said...

Hi BOB CLEVELAND,

You wrote: 'God says that those who haven't seen, yet believe, are blessed, but folks do seem to desire seeing, anyway. I think that's what this deal is about.'

I agree.
Think how kind Christ was to Thomas, who doubted and needed to be shown. Christ, Himself, guided Thomas' hands to His Wounds.
We are created a certain way.
Christ knew this and cared for Thomas with great gentleness. Would that we could also be as compassionate and gentle with those among us who doubt.

greg.w.h said...

Kevin:

It was a two-fold allusion: one was to the icons of Orthodox tradition, and the other was to the Holy Spirit's work to conform us to the eikon of Christ Jesus. I don't think that the discovery of hidden symbols (and other gnostic meaning) is what is the essence of our conformation to the eikon of Christ Jesus. Thus searching for those kinds of pictures and symbols runs the risk of emphasizing the graven image over the Master Engraver and therefore the artist above the Master Artisan.

I'm not belittling people who pray (or, at least, that isn't my intent.) But I, like, Paul, want people to desire the meat and to eventually give up the milk. Honestly, this stuff seems to me to border on less than milk since it doesn't seem nutritional at all. But I acknowledge that there are times when we need to see God most of all and somehow, someway through things like this we see him and faith is renewed. It would be blasphemy for me to declaim that if it is indeed the work of the Holy Spirit. And it might very well be.

But a constant diet of it? Perhaps not?

Greg Harvey

WTJeff said...

Wade,

"But the above sounds a little like hyperbole to me (which is not unusual for me), though I'm not in any disagreement with the sentiment."

I can see how you might see some hyperbole in my statement. I guess I'm more passionate about Giglio's ministry because OneDay 2000 is where God first lit my missional fire as a student minister. It was around the same time that voices like Piper, Stetzer, McNeal, and Driscoll began to be heard. I was attracted to their teaching due to what God taught me at the OneDay gathering.

I simply felt the tone of this post seemed to indicate that Giglio had gone down the same path as Gothard rather than just teaching a questionable session. I've seen the impact of Louis Giglio's ministry both in my life and the life of my former students and it's due to that impact that I wanted to make sure the distinction between this one session and the rest of his ministry was clear.

Bob Cleveland said...

Christiane,

No argument .. but one thing I can do is to approach everything with a desire to do that which takes them most faith. And that includes decisions to believe without seeing, when God says something's so.

I do not heed physical evidence, in matters of faith, as I would never consider physical evidence which disputes faith, either.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Greg,

It would almost appear to me that you have sort of classification system for different levels of Experience with God. As if there is a primitive way to meet God (milk), and an intellectual way (meat). Forgive me, but I don't but that at all. Even the Puritanistic accounts of knowing and savoring God would to me classify as "milk" according to this system.


I am all for an intellectual and scholastic approach to Scripture. But it cannot stop there. I am a "Founder's" man all the way, but I see all to often in my circle of Founder's friends almost a disrespect for folks who want to experience God without a Lexicon.

I am meeting regularly with a charismatic/Pentecostal brother for Bible study, accountability, prayer, etc. and man I have to tell you, I will not/cannot deny his experiences. Our theological differences aside, God is more real to him than me because he sees God in EVERYTHING.

I already made it clear that I do not believe in symbolizing the Bible to death. I believe the Bible cannot mean for use today...(Gordon/Fee)

Call it milk if you want, but I even love to hear the Gospel explained using a sand dollar.

I sometimes wonder if we Baptists and Presbyterians were suckled on meat, and are lacking the milk. Does that make any sense?

Obviously we have redefined milk and meat somewhat here, but in this context...

Tom Kelley said...

greg.w.h said...
Because Christians generally are weak intellectually ...


Quite a generalization there. Is this Christians of all stripes, or just evangelicals, or just fundamentalist Baptists? American Christians only, or all believers worldwide? Any formal stats or studies that bear this out? You may be right, but on the surface your claim sounds quite insulting to the body of Christ (and maybe a little arrogant).

As to the OP, having at one time been heavily influenced by Bill Gothard's teachings, I can say pretty confidently that, as much as I now have difficulties with what he teaches, I have even more trouble with the attitudes of his devout followers. You have never really known scorn until you have raised questions about one of Gothard's teachings to a die-hard Gothardite.

Christiane said...

Bob,
Yes, I understand. And I have thought about this.

There are times for some people, when the natural world around them points quietly to its Creator. And when they begin to awaken to Him through what they CAN see, they then become more pre-disposed to receiving, in faith, what is 'unseen'.

The Scriptures tell of the centurion who said 'Lord, I believe. Help Thou my unbelief'.
For such people, it is said that the Waters of Life will mercifully cover all who seek them.
I agree we should be there to point towards Christ the Lord, knowing, in faith, that the Holy Spirit will do the rest.

In the last post, Liam gave a moving testimony about the quiet witness of a Christian family helping to lead a young woman to faith. There is more 'of Christ' in that kind of quiet witness than we know.
Sometimes, I think 'talking and shouting' has been highly over-rated as a means to reach those in need of Him. The shouting and stomping across a stage, the 'hook' in the sermon, the 'angle', 'the gimmick' may get the attention of something in us that is worldly;
but is it able to reach that part of us that hungers and thirsts for the peace of the Lord ?
Honestly, I think there is more of God to be found in the stillness of a garden, or on a forest path, or a mountain-top, than on the shrill stage of a mega-church.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Off Topic:

I am an hour away from finishing my all time favorite and most helpful book as a man.

"Wild at Heart--Discovering the Secret of a Man's Soul"
by John Eldredge

This one is for the men... I have posted alot of quotes from it on fb. My name on there is KevinMCrowder

Its a must read for men, fathers, sons, etc.

Thy Peace said...

Excellen post. I concur with Greg Harvey's observations. Though I am put off more with the background music in Louis Giglio's sermon.

I also remember one Mac Brunson sermon where he shows the cross in a black hole. I was skeptical with that observation too.

My guess is the preachers are trying to be more hip by attempting to include Science or the images in Nature and Science and attempting to find the image of the cross. Nothing wrong with this, except these patterns are just patterns that the human mind biased with the images of cross is seeing.

I would be more than happy to listen if the sacrifice of Our Lord on the cross is borne out in these patterns.

It might make more sense if they just taught the text of the bible.

greg.w.h said...

Tom Kelley asked:

Quite a generalization there. Is this Christians of all stripes, or just evangelicals, or just fundamentalist Baptists? American Christians only, or all believers worldwide? Any formal stats or studies that bear this out? You may be right, but on the surface your claim sounds quite insulting to the body of Christ (and maybe a little arrogant).

Yep. Sure is. I think it's generally true. I believe Catholics generally do a better job than the evangelicals at teaching the intellectual basis for their traditions and their point of view of our faith. Aquinas's discussion of grace may be flawed 20 ways to Sunday, but it at least exists and is in at least 1600 years of continuous theological and philosophical discussions that are inarguably Catholic in origin. I think Baptists and especially Southern Baptists are making progress, but we traditionally have a very strong anti-urban, anti-intellectual bent.

My background, if it helps, is as a child of a preacher, missionary, and denominational worker both at the national and state/regional convention level. I've got a Bachelor's in a hard science (Chemistry) and just under 30 hours towards an MDiv from Southwestern. My career is in the IT/computer industry where I've worked in and with some 30 companies from mom and pop startups to (several) Fortune 500 companies as an analyst. Surprisingly enough, you have to make what we call "best engineering judgment" calls in my line of work that aren't always capable of being based on extensive surveys including regarding human behavior.

As almost a footnote at this point in my career, I also worked for a couple of years at Membership Services developing both the System 90 and Luvvit solutions which were (kind of) enterprise software for churches. I've also served in various teaching and director positions at a half-dozen or so Southern Baptist churches where I've been a member during my adulthood.

The comment isn't intended to be derisive, though the judgment about falling for snake oil salesmen is intended to be provocative. Again, your anecdote about Gothard and passionate followers of his ministry goes further to make my points--like them or not--than it does to refute what I said.

I have a general distrust of polling especially with the kind of absolutely tiny sample sizes and biased questions that you often see in the national news media. I have a great deal of respect for George Barna's and Ed Stetzer's work and confess that I am not approaching my comments from that viewpoint. I'll also offer that my comments are opinion and while perhaps based on a life-time of experience, they're not made in such a way as to be universal truth claims but as casual observations.

I apologize if somehow you thought I misrepresented myself and have repeated background that I've posted before on Wade's comment streams to try and rectify that.

Greg Harvey

greg.w.h said...

Kevin:

You just debate to debate with very little substance and it often comes across as you're chastising someone else to make yourself look smarter. Perhaps I'm guilty of the same thing.

Greg Harvey

Kevin M. Crowder said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Steve said...

Tangentially:

I tole y'all I could read. In the book -

I just got to Wade's e-mail to Tom Hatley in January 2006. What a scream!! Oh, to have been a fly on about twenty walls that week!!!

Darby Livingston said...

Off topic Kevin,

My favorite Wild at Heart quote: "God is a person who takes immense risks." I'm sure he fits right in at Covenant. :) I think Eldredge has painted a picture of men that could be just as idolatrous as what he's trying to correct, having them quitting their jobs to walk the Appalachian Trail at the expense of their families in search of adventure.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Darby,

Sometimes men's jobs ARE at the expense of their families. John Eldredge's heart from what I can see relates to:

1: boys drugged up for be boys
2. the emasculation of men
3. the rebuking of "posers"

You ought to like the last one, which he lumps in many theologians, ivory towers, elegant pastoral offices, and bullies of all stripes and ages.

In my year an a half as a pastor, part of my vision was to tear down the female structured church, and rebuild it a biblical fashion. I am not talking about leadership here. I mean flowers and doilies and "sit up straight boys" and long haired dress wearing Jesus pictures and women only SS teachers. Boys hate church. Even with male only pastorates, the church is designed to emasculate men.

Now Eldredge, in "Wild at Heart" deals mostly with the family paradigm (Father/Son). Let’s face it. Most men are crappy fathers. That is why boys misuse the “beast within.”

What a book! I will read more of his.

K

PS: It breaks my heart to see the way fathers (even in my own church) treat their sons.

Steven Stark said...

Kevin Crowder,

I wonder how the people who had their parking places taken away by God feel about Christians praying for those spots?

Christiane -“God, in His infinite mercy, did not leave atheists without a way to find Him.”

I appreciate the emphasis on mercy, but perhaps a Road to Damascus revelation would be a bit less ambiguous. BTW, I appreciate your more Eastern viewpoint.

Bob Cleveland, I agree with your assessment. I looked up photos of laminin a year ago or so, after being referred to Giglios’ speech. It doesn’t resemble a cross very much.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Steven Stark, "Can I call ya Joe?"

:)

God owns a few good places. He providentially plans His people's days so that the timing just works out. Oh the logistics of being God. :)

K

Cindy said...

Kevin, you wrote:

Signs and wonders are not necessary for strengthening faith, but can allow the believer to, even for a moment, bask in the glory of God...

I suspect that we all can agree that we run into error when we stray too far off focus, ascribing too much meaning or even too much attention to an aspect of truth or beauty.

About 20 years ago, I read an article in Scientific American that discussed the Right Handed chirality in nature. Very few things spin to the left(atoms spins and the way that matter's structure bends light, sea mollusks and things that have a twist to them, down to the molecular level) and most all things have a right twist to them. I immediately thought of all of the Scriptures that talked about the righteous right hand of our creator. It was great cause to celebrate.

But then, I've got to live in the real world where the handedness of the universe does not come up in most conversations. It is not a primary focus of the Gospel any more than creation is, family, worldview, or a host of other hobby horses that we find in the
Word as minor doctrine.

Groups like Gothard miss the forest for the trees by way of focus, both by degree and direction. He overfocuses on the creature aspects because he favors a works-based system, but he does so because of the ideal of good stewardship of our health. In a way also, misdirected focus also promotes the chance that we will use the end to justify the means. That is what I see underneath the surface of all of these examples. Remember that one of the errors in spiritually abusive systems is unbalanced focus (lack of self-control) through majoring in minor doctrine.

Cindy said...

There is another consideration here also, I think.

I recently read an excellent article written by an amazingly honest naturalist who notes that not only do we put too much faith in science (believing that it will solve more problems than it can), we cannot derive any kind of ethics from science. (The article is well worth the read.)

In terms of this discussion and after contemplating this related topic, our society does put a tremendous amount of faith in our ability to acquire knowledge in order to improve our lives, a worthy cause. But we also get off balance in this area, even as Christians.

The Bible and the moral framework is essential, and we cannot understand the stuff that we are made of without some ideal. Ultimately, even the scientist will delve into the profane because it proves itself to be empty.

Just another peripheral aspect to this discussion that I think is worthy of mention. It all starts with the Word, in the beginning. As Christians, that must remain our focus, our starting point and our end. (Again, we get distracted in the means that we use to get to the worthy end.)

http://onthehuman.org/2009/11/the-disenchanted-naturalists-guide-to-reality/

Cindy said...

Note: Maybe I would be better to say "nonessential doctrine" instead of minor doctrine, as some things are absolutely essential (Christology) and some are not central, open to different interpretations in a spirit of charity.

(It is catchier to say majoring tin the minors, however.)

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RRR said...

Wade says: “There is no understanding of the gospel of God apart from divine verbal or written revelation. Nature does not reveal the God who saves sinners. The holy Scriptures alone reveal for us the nature of a gracious God.”

If you are saying that it is necessary for there to be a written Bible or even an inspired evangelical preacher before the Gospel can be communicated, I respectfully disagree.

Scripture itself confirms that a gracious God is revealed in nature through His creation in Romans 1.

God often reveals His presence, grace, righteousness and holiness through dreams.

But perhaps you would interpret this as “divine verbal” revelation in which case I could agree.


Wade says: "The New Testament emphasizes God's redemptive grace as decisively manifest in Christ, that Jesus was "put to death for our sins" and was raised to put us right with God (Rom. 4:25; cf. 1 Pet. 2:24, 3:18). Forgiveness of sins without substitution and satisfaction is biblically inconceivable for it would impugn God's justice (Rom. 3:21-26)."

Is this statement meant to say that the presence of a Bible is necessary for the salvation plan of God to be revealed to someone?

It’s true that forgiveness of sins without substitution and satisfaction is inconceivable and Christ indeed did satisfy those requirements as portrayed biblically.

But that does not discount that the living Word of God actively communicates and informs people through means other than written Scripture.

Wade says: “I hope and pray this generation of young people becomes more inspired by an excellent exposition of God's Word than an inspirational talk on laminin.”

Why would we not celebrate someone being saved as a result of an inspirational experience (the miracle of the birth of a child) or presentation that portrays the wonder, sovereignty, and grace of God?

Perhaps you are simply stressing the importance of accessibility to Bibles and preaching in which case I would certainly agree.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Cindy,

Your comments and perspective are excellent. I think we see 2 sides of the same coin here. I happen to like both sides. I am certainly a Biblicist, affirm the Chicago Statement on Biblical inerrancy (at least in spirit) and believe the Bible to be "sufficient for all things."

But I also place a ton of weight in creation. Not as a means to salvation, but holding a place in the story and revelation of God.

I admit that my Reformed perspective made me shrink a bit when I first watched the Giglio YOOTOOB vid. But I had to give it deeper thought. I had to actually Google the pictures and purposes of this protein.

Quite honestly I am sold! In fact, I want a 2'x2' picture of the thing neatly matted and framed to hang above my desk.

I love God! I love his creation. I could quite honestly care less whether a person thinks it is billions or millions or thousands of years or seconds old. Hold to the fish bowl theory--none of that bothers me anymore. I am a 6/24 Ken Hamm no death before the fall creationist but really who cares??? The earth is here. The hills and the mountains and the deer and ants and the sun and trees and the sand and bees. Seen any Hubble pics lately? Oh the beauty of the canvas of my Lord. I read a couple years ago about a sea creature called the flashlight fish. Lives at the bottom of the deepest parts of the ocean. We have not known about it long. Abraham and Noah and Adam prolly never saw this fish (Ok, maybe Adam swam down to name it). God created it for Himself. He liked it. I like God. So I like the fish. :)

God is pleased to feed a Zebra to a Lion. So I am pleased with God. God is pleased to leave His finger prints on His creation. I am pleased to finger print creation, and declare His glory to the world.

My God created this protein regardless of its shape. He created bacteria. He created the HIV virus. He created the antiretroviral drugs to treat it. He is pleased make all things work in accordance with His will.

I am pleased to smile when I see God and hear His voice even while the church frowns.

K

Steven Stark said...

Kevin,

Awesome, that's great!

It makes me wonder too, from a Calvinist perspective, are there people that God naturally favors to get the good parking places, so He causes them to pray and ask Him, so that He can then give the good spots out to His "objects of mercy"? Are all the "objects of wrath" parked way out in the boonies merely there so that the "objects of mercy" can see them and appreciate their short walk in to Wal-Mart?

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Thy Peace:

The "cross in the black hole" that you referenced is also a Louie Giglio staple in his sermons on the universe. He uses that as the climax of his sermon on the solar system.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Steven,

There is a certain mystery to all this. I personally like the "God is the grand puppeteer" theory, but am not sure I can find definitive biblical evidence to support that. Obviously I believe in salvific predestination, but parking places? Hmm. Good question. I do know I chose to stay up late plowing into my second book in as many days...

...or did I? Maybe the Lord has a purpose for me staying up late. To answer your question at 1:25am? Surely not. :)

So that Greg will not think me attempting to show you or he or anyone else up, allow to give a final simple answer: I ain't got no friggin' clue!

:)

Lydia said...

"I think Eldredge has painted a picture of men that could be just as idolatrous as what he's trying to correct, having them quitting their jobs to walk the Appalachian Trail at the expense of their families in search of adventure."

Darby, You are right on. The worst part is that I have to stay home in my princess tower and wear frilly dresses. If I wanted to hike the trail, too, I would not be the damsel in distress like Stasi and would not spend my time waiting for my husband to make me feel beautiful.

By the way, men who can do these things are celebrities in ministry who can write about it and sell lots of books. That IS their job. :)

It also annoys me that he talks about his wife's depression all the time. Hmmmmmmmm

Darby Livingston said...

Lydia,

It's what happens when one gets his theology from fairy tales, the movies and pop psychology instead of the Bible. In that way, I guess it's not off topic from Wade's post at all.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

"It also annoys me..."


Ya, well, you annoy me. I think he might call you a poser.

Stop being a poser you poser!


:)

PS: You might sign up to attend their upcoming "Love and War" Tour in a city near you. It is refreshing to see other believers be "real in public" for a change.

Lydia said...

PS: You might sign up to attend their upcoming "Love and War" Tour in a city near you. It is refreshing to see other believers be "real in public" for a change.

Fri Jan 08, 11:04:00 AM 2010

Kev, Believe me when I tell you I have had years and years of watching folks who get their beliefs from books written by "Christians" instead of the Word. They love roles, rules and formulas. And what man would not love to act out what Eldridge teaches?

I do know a parapelegic that cannot, though. Does that make him less than a man?

Eldridge got his start with Dobson which is a good career booster with instant inroads to publishers.

Now, I do get to see the fall out from such books, too. When the fairy tale never comes true or the young boys bad behavior is excused as boys will be boys. It is usually the preachers kids or the seminary professors kids. And they have read the book and want to raise real men.

(As a direct result of Eldridge, many churches are doing wild game feeds where they hunt and then eat the kill. It is for men only. I am curious how this makes them more Christlike? I have no problem with the concept of hunting and eating what one kills but I also know some women who are mighty good at it, too. But that does not make the men feel like real men so they are not invited to participate)

Lydia said...

Kev, One more thing..some churches are using race car and sports themes as decor to make men like church more. Personally, I would like that more than doilies or flowers but seriously, how is any of this 'of Christ'?

You can read about some of this ridiculous stuff all over the internet: Riding motorcycles on stage, big light shows, wearing cammo on stage, etc.

Those are the 'real in public' you are talking about? Are they not posers using props?

Louis said...

Just wondering... what would happen to Giglio's "cross in the laminin" and "cross in the black hole" sermons if it were to be discovered that the cross on which Jesus died was not shaped like a lower case t, but like a capital T (with the crossbar laid on top of the upright, not intersecting it part way down). Silly, I know--but it's just a thought that occurred to me.

Incidentally, there is a great parody video on youtube called "Ignatius the Ultimate Youth Pastor" in which this sort of thing is skewered. The video can be found at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLGLBVSpBzY

The portion of the video which is relevant to this conversation begins at about the 6:14 point.

Mara Reid said...

Very sad, about the results of reading Elderidge's book.

I, for one, loved it. Felt drawn to the cover and title. And God used it for ME to get free from religious restraints. I loved it so much, I had my husband read it.
All it did for him was give him the right, in his own mind, to be more of a jerk than what he already was. I was sorry I encouraged him to read it.

Very sad.

I understand the message Elderidge was trying to get across. It was the right message for me at the right time. Not to become a more manly woman, but to foster my own 'wild heart', a new term I needed since the phrase 'freedom in Christ' had been so overused, misapplied and/or misdefined that I need a stronger term, 'wild freedom' not constrained by the boxes religion builds for us (men and women)

But just as on person will get one thing from a book and another will get something different...
God used that book for me. It was a good one for me at the time.
It was a very bad book for my husband. And now I see that it has not been a very good book for other men as well, for which I'm sorry. I was hoping my dear one was the exception and not the rule.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

"wearing cammo on stage"


SWEET!!!

I have been trying to think of how I can incorporate a shotgun as a sermon prop. :)

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Mara,

The book did not change your husband nor give him validation to be more of a jerk. He misread the book. He saw the fantasy over the message. He was more of a jerk because he always WAS more of a jerk. He was a poser. John Eldredge would likely hold your husband in great disdain for abusing his manliness. He is a disgrace to his part of the image of God.

I can see where this book might be bad for some men. God is in the process of retooling me for life and ministry. This is not the first book I have read. I do not read books in place of Scripture.

Wild at Heart is replete with biblical verses and passages exposited correctly. The examples from movies and "fairy tales" are an effort to bring real life application to the mind of a man, which is inherently "wild."

The problem is the emasculation of men.

Your husband has other issues. Issues which need to be resolved between him, a group of Godly men, and a few 2x4's.

But here is the thing. Your husband only really read the first3-4 chapters...then he petered out. (total pun intended). Had he given the last half of the book as much attention as the first part...had he actually looked up the passages John quotes and studied them in context...had he prayed for deliverance...well, don't blame the book. Blame the jerk!

I am sorry for the pain he has caused you, on behalf all men who know what God-given strength really is.

kevin

Lydia said...

http://theresurgence.com/randy_stinso_2003-10_is_god_wild_at_heart

Here is an interesting review by Randy Stinson of CBMW fame. Of course I do not agree with all of Stinson's claims including that the church has been feminized but he makes some very good points about the Sovereignty of God and how Elderidge misses that.

BTW: How can the church have become feminized since mostly men can lead it? I have never understood this. And, except for doilies, exactly what does this 'feminization' of the church mean?

Are not both men and women to be bold witnesses for Christ? Is there a pink Christ and a blue Christ?

Kevin M. Crowder said...

"Emasculation happens in marriage as well. Women are often attracted to the wilder side of a man, but once having caught him they settle down to the task of domesticating him. Ironically, if he gives in he'll resent her for it, and she in turn will wonder where the passion has gone." -John Eldredge, ("Wild at Heat" Chapter 5)

"The Church has very efficiently pared the claws of the Lion of Judah, making him a fitting household pet for pale curates and pious old ladies" -Dorothy Sayers (Is that the God you find in the Bible?)
Taken from WaH Chapter 2

"Every woman wants an adventure to share...So many men make the mistake of thinking hte woman IS the adventure. But that is where the relationship immediately goes downhill....she wants to be caught up in something greater than herself" -John Eldredge

"Capes and swords, camouflage, bandanas and six-shooters--these are the 'uniforms' of boyhood."

"Little girls so not invent games where large numbers of people die, where bloodshed is a prerequisite for having fun."

HAHA!!!!! I love this book!!!!!!!

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Lydia,

Why would you use Stinson's review? You have nothing in common with him. He is a Complementarian through and through. What he likes about the book you hate. His only 2 issues (which I do agree in part) miss the point of the book and presuppose the men reading this book are seminary studs. Not so. This is an "in the trenches" book. From that perspective Eldredge is NOT leading men astray theologically. He is very careful in the book infact to NOT do so. Sure, he relies on the Holy Spirit and is not a "Bible worshipper." (I know that irks you)

The Bible is timeless. But cultural relevance and application is not. In fact the church herself is so outdated she is still dressed in fig leaves. (Notice that cleaver tie in) :)

Wild at Heart is NOT a "read it, do it, fix it" book.

Maybe that is Eldredge's only flow. He lacks the warning label. Men read and are hard wired to "read it, do it, fix it."

Wild at heart requires a complete engine rebuild. Only a few men REALLY have the tenacity for that.

K

Lydia said...

Kevin, My mom took film footage of me playing with my brothers tin soldiers lining them up to wipe out the British. All the while, my brother was trying to entice me away with a doll. He finally gave up and played the part of the British.

So what to do if the woman is wild at heart? Is she in sin because her wildness emasculates the man?

You do realize that you are claiming that women have the power to emasculate men. And you are blaming women when you have the "control" and "authority" granted to you by your pet interpretation of the Word.

Sounds to me that, once again, women are an easy target for blame. This goes back to the teaching that Eve enticed Adam to sin.

(Are you familiar with Sayers' husband?)

Here is something else from Sayers:

From the book: Are Women Human?

“‘What,’ men have asked distractedly from the beginning of time, ‘what on earth do women want?’ I do not know that women, as women, want anything in particular, but as human beings they want, my good men, exactly what you want yourselves: interesting occupation, reasonable freedom for their pleasures, and a sufficient emotional outlet. What form the occupation, the pleasures and the emotion may take, depends entirely upon the individual.”

Lydia said...

"Sure, he relies on the Holy Spirit and is not a "Bible worshipper." (I know that irks you)"

It can't irk me because I have no idea what you mean?

Corrie said...

Tom,

"As to the OP, having at one time been heavily influenced by Bill Gothard's teachings, I can say pretty confidently that, as much as I now have difficulties with what he teaches, I have even more trouble with the attitudes of his devout followers. You have never really known scorn until you have raised questions about one of Gothard's teachings to a die-hard Gothardite."

You can say that again. :-)

I was in ATI, Gothard's highly private homeschooling organization, and I am intimately familiar with the bulk of his teachings. I was challenged by some people to examine his teachings and when I started looking up the verses Gothard claimed to support his assertions, I was shocked that most times the scriptures had NOTHING to do with what he was asserting.

The Character Sketch books are horrible. His nature story about crows is just one such example.

I spent many years running a list, along with other godly men (one of whom, was a pastor, who just died and I will greatly miss him) that discusses his teachings. I received all sorts of "scorn" for merely questioning his teachings.

Gothard preps his followers by telling them that anyone who questions or has a problem with one of his teachings is either bitter, jealous or has some closet addiction to rock music, has low standards or has been divorced. So, when you question one of his teachings to one of his followers, you will be met with an accusation of one of these things because Gothard has prepped them.

Lydia said...

"Why would you use Stinson's review? You have nothing in common with him."

But you do.

He is one of Mohlers boys so I thought you would bow to his teaching...:o)

B Nettles said...

Kevin,
Why not go all the way and imitate Patterson driving an assault vehicle on stage? That'll get things "fired up."

Seriously, have you checked out The Star of Bethlehem DVD by Rick Larson. It's a good examination of the "star" and extends to astronomical happenings at the probable time of the Cross.

While I personally think that Giglio gushes a little too much at the laminin, we need to remember that God has always used types and symbols when communicating with mankind. We choose names for our children which reflect goodness, strength, beauty; anybody out there name their daughter Rahab or Jezebel, or a son, Judas?

while laminin doesn't necessarily teach us anything about the Gospel, the Cross symbol is a reminder. Maybe the full moon should be a monthly reminder of the Passover lamb. Maybe the "O" that we print should be a reminder of the open, empty tomb. But those things come from having a mind which is already focused on Christ and aren't, in my opinion, designed to teach or prove anything.

I think Greg and Kevin both have points: Christians are often gullible and non-thinking when it comes to symbolism, and Christians should appreciate the beauty and order which reminds us of Gospel ideas.

On the other side of the coin is Packer, who, in Knowing God suggests that deliberate posting of images of the cross might be idolatry.

Darby Livingston said...

"Capes and swords, camouflage, bandanas and six-shooters--these are the 'uniforms' of boyhood."

"Little girls so not invent games where large numbers of people die, where bloodshed is a prerequisite for having fun."

This is just stupid. Ideas have consequences. Were the Hitler Youth in uniform strapping specimens of God-designed boyhood? That's what happens when boys' natural desires are channeled instead of corrected. Why are we to conclude that this "bloodshed is a prerequisite for having fun" is a result of creation and not the Fall? Those quotes are not an exposition of any Scripture, but one man's twisted view of reality.

Jonathan Edwards preached his closing sermon on "Charity and its Fruits" entitled, "Heaven is a World of Love." Heaven will have an eternity of infinite enjoyment through love, not bloodshed. Law enforcement and war and protecting young ladies walking the street at night is a necessary evil on earth because of the Fall and the curse, but it isn't to be celebrated as a call of the wild. But in Heaven, the former things will pass away.

If you need this book, Kevin, to feel like a man, I feel sorry for you. Again, read "On the Altar of a Nation" to see how Eldridge's view of manhood (and Vision Forum's for that matter) can kill off a whole generation of young men in four years.

It is utterly ridiculous to think that man's fallen martial instincts aren't celebrated enough and that's what's leading to the problems in the church and in marriage.

Corrie said...

"Every woman wants an adventure to share.."

I love and thrive on adventure but I have always made my own. I don't mind sharing an adventure but I also do not, as a woman, sit around waiting for a man to present an adventure that I may "share".

I also have never been a woman who has pined away for a prince to come and rescue me. That is a fairy-tale and it only brings disillusionment and disappointment.

Lydia,

Love the Sayer's quote and I couldn't agree more with what she has said concerning what women really want. I love her illustration about a woman and a man riding on a bus. Men will say that women pick the side of the bus where they can see the shops but men pick the side of the bus that is most comfortable since it doesn't tilt too much even though both genders are picking the same side of the bus. She goes on to say that women pick that side of the bus for the same reason men do- comfort. Many times men, according to Sayers, try to find female reasons why women do things when women do things mostly for human reasons just like men do.

Corrie said...

"Darby, You are right on. The worst part is that I have to stay home in my princess tower and wear frilly dresses. If I wanted to hike the trail, too, I would not be the damsel in distress like Stasi and would not spend my time waiting for my husband to make me feel beautiful."

Lydia,

Blech!

I would rather be out training for a half-marathon or lifting weights at the gym, getting all sweaty and feeling like I accomplished some new goal.

As for all the props that this new wave of "manly men" are using to defeminize the church and get more men to attend, have you ever checked out the "Church for Men" site? Basically, men hate going to church because there are too many women and they come up with all sorts of gimmicks to get men to come to church. Which includes, calling the pastor "coach" and hooting at the sermon as if they were at some ballgame.

As for what makes a church "feminized", I don't know what people mean by that. But, I have heard complaints of "kleenex boxes" and "pastel colors" as the culprits.

Most of it sounds like a lot of whining, imho. And it is a slap in the face to the women who are many times the silent backbone of the church. Women who do all the behind the scenes work, work the nurseries, cook the food for the meals, etc. No one is holding these guys back from becoming full members of a church where they contribute to the health of the body except for their own selves, their own flimsy excuses and their own laziness.

Corrie said...

"In my year an a half as a pastor, part of my vision was to tear down the female structured church, and rebuild it a biblical fashion. I am not talking about leadership here. I mean flowers and doilies and "sit up straight boys" and long haired dress wearing Jesus pictures and women only SS teachers. Boys hate church. Even with male only pastorates, the church is designed to emasculate men. "

Female structured church? The church is designed to emasculate men? I don't know where to begin on this.

I guess I will start with a question:

What does a male structured church look like and why is a male structured church ("biblical") the way to go when you consider that at least half of the body of Christ is female?

And why does everything bad in the church always get labeled "female"? That bothers me as a female as if there is something inherently defective about being a female and that maleness is far superior than femaleness?

BTW, I am not at all into frills and lace and doilies and pastel colors but then there are a LOT of women who are not at all into these things and would rather spend their time digging into theology than worry about frills. I tend to be unemotional (therefore not needing much Kleenex), rational and logical. I am also a critical thinker. I don't understand books written about how women think (supposedly); the woman outlined in these books are foreign to me.

Does that make me more masculine? Or does that just make me human? And is there a place for women in the church other than in the nursery and the kitchen?

Steven Stark said...

Kevin: "I ain't got no friggin' clue!"

Almost always a respectable position! ;)

Lydia said...

" Many times men, according to Sayers, try to find female reasons why women do things when women do things mostly for human reasons just like men do."

Corrie, I can even draw parallels in this entire conversation to the testimonies I heard from from former homosexuals.

How many of the guys said their interests leaned toward art or wordsmithing when their parents wanted them in sports. They were not 'wild at heart' enough.

It became a huge tug of war and they ended up going where they were accepted at college with little discernment and getting sucked into the horrible sin.

Some boys would rather paint or sculpt. Some girls would rather play basketball (like me) than dress up like a princess. My own daughter finds great pleasure in collecting rocks and leaves and getting very muddy. She does not like dolls or dress up. And would never fix her hair unless I make her. She could care less.

BTW: ONe mega church I know the MEN chose the pastel decor based upon counsel from the big church designer people. There were no women on the committee. :o)

No one asks me to cook for church events anymore. Not since the grits debacle. :o)

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Dr. Nettles,

I love and respect Dr, Packer, but my ONLY criticism of "Knowing God" is Packer's seemingly misunderstanding of the 2nd commandment. We are a physical people. Signs and symbols are what make us tick--especially men.

Anyway,


Folks, is this what Christianity is all about? Fighting and slamming others views? As if God has only ordained one way to get His Gospel across?

Word Verification: reecks

As does the stinch in this place!

Lydia said...

Kevin, Wild at Heart is not the Gospel.

Lydia said...

"We are a physical people. Signs and symbols are what make us tick--especially men. "


Which is why that plastic fish on the car is so important?

Off to go sledding...school is out because of snow and I am wild at heart!

Kevin M. Crowder said...

You Pagan snow worshiper. :)


Have fun, and please do not break your typing finger. ;)

Darby Livingston said...

"Off to go sledding...school is out because of snow and I am wild at heart!"

Won't you rip the lace on your dress?

Corrie said...

"Signs and symbols are what make us tick--especially men. "

Kevin,

I sincerely ask you: What are the signs and symbols that make us tick and why do signs and symbols especially make men tick?

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Corrie,

I suppose I should define "signs and symbols" fist. By symbols I would mostly refer to symbolic referents in Scripture (i.e. the thrown as God's power, etc) But I like to think of the seasons we experience (and we experience them all here in Missouri) as symbolic of the newness we have in Christ, Symbolic of His power over the created universe, etc.

Signs on the other hand are everywhere. "Creation declares His glory." A baby born, an open parking place :) An unexpected check in the mail.

Baptism and the Lord's Supper are also signs and seals of His death and resurrection. Even the Sun rising each morning reminds us of several things not the least of which is the resurrection.

God did not just leave us a Bible covered in your choice of two-tone or calf-skin leather. He left us His Spirit.

In fact He told His disciples that it was imperative that He DID leave, else the Spirit would not come. And it was the Spirit they really needed, as the physical Jesus was limited by His unipresence.

We are a people who need to be reminded that God exists. I am person who needs to be reminded. I am not a fan of the crucifix, but I wonder if we as Baptists would do well to focus year 'round on His Passion rather than just at Easter. The crucifix help Catholics do just that. A reminder only. I see nothing inherently wrong with that.

K

Lydia said...

"Off to go sledding...school is out because of snow and I am wild at heart!"

Won't you rip the lace on your dress?

Fri Jan 08, 02:49:00 PM 2010

In honor of Kevin, I wore my princess tiara over my ski headband. :o)

Lydia said...

off topic:

Some leftists are angry

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s0bh77k2Wdk

happy gram said...

1)we didn't get to this place in 1 year and
2)not all "leftists" are angry.

Kevin M. Crowder said...

Don't worry grams, they will be!


HAHA!!

Joe Blackmon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lydia said...

"1)we didn't get to this place in 1 year"


Actually, we have had quite a bit of "change" over the last year. Not much hope, though. Unless one likes socialism with nationalized banks and industry.

Joe Blackmon said...

Actually, we have had quite a bit of "change" over the last year. Not much hope, though. Unless one likes socialism with nationalized banks and industry.


And we know if there is one thing that lefties LOVE is socialism and one thing they HATE is capitalism--almost as much as they hate America.

Liam Madden said...

Liam,

Hi Lydia and Joe,

You two wouldn't be talking about folks like me again would you?

Lydia, in earlier post you accused me of re-writing history just because I pointed out some of President Obama's successes this year.

But then, you argued that FDR (who is consistently ranked in national polls as one of the top 5 U.S. presidents of all time)was the moral and political equivalent of Adolph Hitler. Isn't it actually you, then, and not I who was re-writing history? Or do you alone possess some secret "true" knowledge of U.S. history and the rest of Americans are "brainwashed"? It seems that it is you, and not the rest of America, that has ingested a good deal of propoganda.

And in your quote below you stated:

"Actually, we have had quite a bit of "change" over the last year. Not much hope, though. Unless one likes socialism with nationalized banks and industry."

Once again you distort the truth, since in fact, the president and the congress did not "nationalize" the banks but merely bailed them out, which is not the same thing. None of the bailed out institutions were nationalized. And a handy pie chart (if I had one, but I am not Ross Perot) would show you that even with the bailouts, the U.S. government still has a stake in less than 1% of the entire U.S. economy, so where is the big threat of socialism?

Similarly, you argued that "free markets" should be left alone to right our economy, but wasn't it unregulated capitalism that caused the financial crisis in the first place?

You also made toward me a snarky remark, saying, "I hope you merit the bread that is being taken from others on your behalf." I'm not sure what you mean by that because I have private insurance that is paid for by my employer. I don't mind paying a tax, though, to help someone who doesn't have healthcare get some. These costs are already passed along to taxpayers, I figure, so why not spend a bit more to get a system that provides some preventive care and not just critical care.

I do not understand nor do I agree with the logic (which is contradictory) of "conservative" Christians which is that it is perfectly fine for the government to be an instrument of harm (as in elective or pre-emptive war, global dominance) but not to heal. Have you complained as much about the wasteful spending on Iraq reconstruction, which was largely a boondoggle and a scandal as you do about potential spending on healthcare reform? Where's your consistency?

Christiane said...

GOV'T INTERFERENCE IN HEALTH CARE:

"WHEN ‘HEALTH CARE ‘, AS WE KNOW IT, WAS FORMED.

Everything old is new again . . . . .
‘the less care they give ‘em, the more money they make ‘ Ehrlichman speaking.
‘not bad’ Nixon replies . . . .


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RmHTte8jRLk&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iGKkPEvD2OM


And people worry about the Democrats?
Please.

Joe Blackmon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Liam Madden said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Liam Madden said...

Joe,

In many cases I would agree with you, but for me the issue is sustainability. Even the scripture says that "for everything, there is a season, a time for war, and a time for peace." And George Orwell mocked the idea of perpetual war for perpetual peace as illogical, absurd, and monstrous.

In the wake of 9/11, I was all for the Afghan war, but thought that the Iraq War was a mistake. They had no WMD's and there never was conclusive evidence of a connection with al-Qaeda. Saddam was a tyrant, but at least his regime wasn't a fanatical Islamist one. G.H.W. Bush understood this and made the smart move by destroying most of Saddam's military might, but leaving him in power as a stabilizing force and a buffer against his longtime enemy Iran.

Do you not agree that the pre-emptive war in Iraq has led to a mess, a defeat, and another Vietnam-style black-eye for this country? How do you think that the message of Jesus: "Blessed are the peacemakers," and "He who lives by the sword, dies by the sword" applies to our situation today. Your view seems to be that peace only comes from the sword. Is that what you really believe and is that all that you really believe? I'm not trying to pick on you, it's just that given your views expressed here, it seems like a valid question.

Lydia said...

"Lydia, in earlier post you accused me of re-writing history just because I pointed out some of President Obama's successes this year."

Liam, we simply disagree. You see them as successes.

"But then, you argued that FDR (who is consistently ranked in national polls as one of the top 5 U.S. presidents of all time)"

So popularity is what counts? isn't that our problem, we are poll driven instead of fact driven?


"was the moral and political equivalent of Adolph Hitler. "

That does not sound right. bring the quote over and lets look at it. You come off real nice Liam but now I am finding, like a typical liberal, it is all for show. Underneath you are quite willing to twist anything.

Give me a Joe anyday who says what he means and means what he says even if he is mean. I cannot STAND phonies.

So, bring the quote of mine here and lets look and see if I called FDR a Nazi.

After that, it would be best if we do not interact because now I cannot trust you anymore.

Liam Madden said...

Lydia,

You're right. I overstepped. You did not compare FDR to a Nazi. I misread and took a quote from Christiane that got pasted into one of your posts (in which she was teasing you about maybe believing that FDR started the Depression and WWII) as your own words.

I assure you that I'm not a forked-tongued person or trying to be disingenuous here. It's my mistake. No hurt feelings intended. I thought you liked to debate me because you had a lot to say in our earlier exchanges on the topic and I never got to answer because I was traveling back from my vacation.

Best,

Liam

Christiane said...

Liam,

Some people use hyperbole in their writing and people laugh.

I use it, and it comes 'round and hits me on the back of head. :)

I think I need some aspirin.
Oy.

Christiane said...

Hi LIAM,

Take a look at this:

http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2009/jul/19/behind-closed-doors-c-street/

Apparently, the founder of this 'Family' was inspired by a man that feared FDR's work.

The 'FDR' thing isn't entirely a joke: for some, unfortunately, it is connected to a cult involving people called 'The New Chosen'.
Is this disturbing?
Hmmmmm . . .
Not once it is brought out into the light.

I predict the cult will die from exposure. But the 'Family' has a lot of money and a lot of power, and a lot of influence over the far right media. So, we shall see.

Darby Livingston said...

L's

Why have you never expressed concern about the company President Obama keeps? Not just his mentors but members of his administration who claim Chairman Mao as a personal hero. Why aren't they cause for concern if this "Family" is?

Christiane said...

Hi DARBY,

The 'Family' or 'the Fellowship' has existed for about seventy years.
It's 'coming out' now into the light. I did not know of its existence prior to the C Street scandals.

What do you know about 'The Family'? Its history and its goals?
Do you know that the founder claims that God visited him and gave him a revelation?

I think it may be a cult.
Or maybe some Christians see it as a new denomination.
?

Are you concerned that people are being 'exposed' at C Street ?
Is Obama a reason not to take a good look at C Street?

I want to know EVERYTHING about the 'New Chosen', don't you ?

Darby Livingston said...

Not so much because I agree with you that the group may die from exposure. Do you know how many sects and cliques there are in the world? Neither do I. :)

Christiane said...

This one is interesting.
'The Family' or 'The Fellowship' has put roots down in African politics. Apparently something to do with homosexuality and the death penalty.
A peculiar combo of 'religion' and politics makes this 'cult' stand out.
Personally, I don't think it has anything to do with Christianity.
Which means that, assuming you read Wade's new post, if the great preacher Spurgeon were alive today and got wind of C-Street, he would probably take a flame-thrower to the place. :)

Liam Madden said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Liam Madden said...

Christiane,
Thanks for sharing the article. I read a lot of news and watch out for cults. My literary studies have, at one time or another, dealt with works of fiction that explore the role that secret societies may or may not have had on history. But I have never read or heard anything about this "Family" before, and I really appreciate your sharing.

I have additional thoughts to share on this topic but may wait until I'm better rested to post again. To be honest, I feel a little guilty for apparently hurting Lydia's feelings. I certainly didn't intend to. It may make me stop blogging for a while. Silence can a be a spiritual discipline. I want to be more about preserving the unity of the faith and building people up than simply winning occasional arguments. I felt that the previous round of criticism of my views on the application of Christian values to social concerns such as healthcare was sort of a right-wing beat-down of me, to which I never got a chance to respond because of being on the road. But I didn't expect Lydia to get her feelings hurt by me because she comes across as so strong. Probably, none of us are as strong as we like to come across. In any case, thanks for posting and your efforts to have a kind of conversation with me.

Wade Burleson said...

Liam,

Sorry for the delay in responding to your Facebook note. Just found it this morning. I don't use Facebook that often; it takes me a while to respond to about 150 daily emails. :)

So, I really appreciate the work you are doing overseas. I am passing on the information you gave me to Dr. John Stam, our missions pastor, and we are going to see what we can do to provide some folks for the project. We are highly connected to Africa, India and Japan this year (trips to all three places), so I'm unsure if we can do what is needed as quickly as you would like, but you never know!

Wade

Lydia said...

Liam,

I am not so silly as to get my feelings hurt over a blog comment. You attempted to paint me something I am not based on someone elses words. I called you out on it. I would expect you to do the same with me if need be. It is about honesty and integrity.

I deal in facts. We can disagree on facts, no problem.

What I find particularly grievous is deception and fakiness in communications. Folks who dodge questions and use lots of platitudes to present themselves as something they really are not.

I have noted how 'nice' you have been on this blog but when your politcal hero was questioned, you went for the jugglar and tried to malign the messenger. That is pure politics. Instead of dealing in facts we could debate, you resorted to personal attack that was not true.

That is cause not to trust you and has nothing to do with feelings but the facts of the situation. I accept your apology (it was, I think?) but you can forgo the tactic of presenting it as hurt "feelings". My personal "feelings" left on the last train to Georgia many years ago. :o)

It is not about feelings. It is about trust.

As Eleanor Roosevelt used to say: No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.

Joe Blackmon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Liam Madden said...

Lydia,

I think you criticism is fair and I'm glad to apologize again if you will accept it. I think I kind of wanted to get your attention a little because I felt you were being a little unfair in some posts several weeks ago painting me into a corner as some kind of typical leftist, liberal college professor, which I hope that I am not.

Politically, I'm a conservative democrat and have been able to reconcile being theologically conservative and generally socially conservative, with some exceptions for healthcare and education, two concerns that I'm passionate about. I get a little frustrated sometimes when ultra-conservative types (not meaning you, just anybody) tries to paint me as too far to the left because I try really hard to occupy the sensible center.

My own feeling is that politics have skewed too far to the right for my taste in the last many years, and maybe for that reason I tend to tack back to the left. In any case, as a I re-read your posts, their thoughtfulness and sincerity impressed me more, and I do believe that your convictions are well thought through and also backed up by experience. I'd like to learn from you and dialogue with you if you. I hope we can be friends here, and again, I'm sorry for the hurt that I caused. But I don't want you to think that I'm two-faced. I was just tired and let my impulse to defend myself get the better of me. Pride can be an ugly thing when it shows its face. I'm not immune to sin and would appreciate your prayers.

Christiane said...

JOE BLACKMON:
"Bush didn't make up the intel that led he and other world leaders to believe that Sadam had WMD's and as much as those of your political stripe would LOVE to believe it he didn't know the information was incorrect and lie about it."

GEORGE W. BUSH:
""You know, one of the hardest parts of my job is to connect Iraq to the war on terror." --interview with CBS News' Katie Couric,
Sept. 6, 2006'

Lydia said...

"My own feeling is that politics have skewed too far to the right for my taste in the last many years, and maybe for that reason I tend to tack back to the left."

Just for grins, go listen or read some old JFK speeches. He make George Bush look like a lefty. A lot of the old Dems sound like republicans. It is amazing how far to the left has become normal.

Just remember, for some reason a lot of people wanted to live here bad enough to brave some serious challenges and originally, it was not for the handouts.

Apology accepted. Let's stick to facts even if we disagree.

Liam Madden said...

Dear Wade,

Thank you very much. My students have really gotten into facebook and now most of my old college friends and family are on it. I probably spend too much time on facebook, but I really enjoy it. It was nice to see you on there.

Thanks for your words of support and for passing the word along about the ministry opportunities there. I'll be happy to provide contacts and help make connections for anyone who wants to go. I remember what a blessing it was to have such individuals or teams come and serve and share their testimonies.

I really appreciate you writing to me about this and ask for your prayers for our church team and our guest as we prepare for traveling in about two months.

Blessings,

Liam

Lydia said...

Joe, The bottomline is that we WERE going to have to fight Saddam sooner or later. It was going to happen. He often declared he was the next Sultan Suleiman.

Liam Madden said...

Lydia,

"Apology accepted. Let's stick to facts even if we disagree."

Hey, thanks for that. I really mean it. I like your historical perspective. I'm probably too lenient or tolerant toward slackers. I'll think about that. My students better watch out, hm? :)!

Thanks very much and blessings to you.

Christiane said...

Hi JOE,

Concerning Saddam, I must agree:
"Further, I might remind everyone that we caught him and killed him. That was a good thing."

It's just that we need to remember, remember, remember what is cost us to do it:

"Iraq:
There have been 4,693 coalition deaths -- 4,376 Americans, two Australians, one Azerbaijani, 179 Britons, 13 Bulgarians, one Czech, seven Danes, two Dutch, two Estonians, one Fijian, five Georgians, one Hungarian, 33 Italians, one Kazakh, three Latvians, 22 Poles, three Romanians, five Salvadoran, four Slovaks, one South Korean, 11 Spaniards, two Thai and 18 Ukrainians -- in the Iraq war as of January 7, 2010, according to a CNN count. The list below is the names of the soldiers, Marines, airmen, sailors and Coast Guardsmen whose deaths have been reported by their country's
governments. The list also includes 13 U.S. Defense Department civilian employees. At least 31,616 U.S. troops have been wounded in action, according to the Pentagon."

This death list does not include the civilian men, women, children, and babies that died in Iraq.
The estimates are 'guestimates':
the further to the right you are, the lower the 'guess'. The average 'guestimate' is somewhere around one hundred thousand human deaths.

Well, we got him: Saddam.
USA and Coalition got him.
Done. He's gone.

The next time you see one of our young soldiers walking with prostheses: remember to go up and thank him for his service.
It's the very least we can do.
HIS is the sacrifice WE signed on to.

Lest we forget.

Joe Blackmon said...

L's
I make it a point everytime I see a solider in uniform to thank him/her for their service. I also point out to my kids when we see soldiers and tell them that they protect our freedom and we should be thankful for them. We go to the Veterans Day parade every year to see the heroes.

Oh, and your "quote" from an interview--total red herring. That does NOT prove that he lied. Nice try though.

Christiane said...

Joe, it was a nice try, you have to admit. :)
I disagree about the significance of what he said, though.

I also thank our soldiers. We have more than a few in our community who have had devastating injuries. I hope I never 'get used to' seeing them like that. But at least they are alive. And home. Thank God for that.
Love, L's

Christiane said...

JOE,

My niece Lindsay is going to deploy to Afghanistan some time soon. She is a Navy nurse: surgical, trauma, intensive care unit, etc.

I'll let you know when she leaves and you can help me pray for her.
Love, L's

Joe Blackmon said...

L's

joe.blackmon72@yahoo.com

Liam Madden said...

Another cost of ou wars that many are not considering is opportunity cost. Consider this excellent article by Thomas Friedman:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/10/opinion/10friedman.html

Corrie said...

Hi Kevin,

"But I like to think of the seasons we experience (and we experience them all here in Missouri) as symbolic of the newness we have in Christ, Symbolic of His power over the created universe, etc."

Yes, *we* sure do! ;-) I have lived in Missouri almost 3 years and I am a native of Wisconsin. I am looking forward to the "warmer" weather this week and I never thought I would say that since moving down to Missouri.

Thank you for explaining what you meant by signs and symbols. That was helpful and I understand what you meant by your comment now.

Anonymous said...

Dear Wade,
I saw this video for the first time today so I am extremely late to this discussion. I too felt a certain rush when I heard Louie's message. After doing some additional research on very reputable sites I have reached a far different conclusion than most. The arguments refuting Louie's message have it backwards.The Laminin protein is not used to "prove" scripture but rather simply is one of a myriad of evidences of God that exist in His creation. Even if Laminin is not in the shape of the cross the fact that proteins like Laminin exist simply indicate the existence of a designer - GOD! That is exciting. We can see the evidence of God all around us. Obviously what we know of God comes from scripture first not the other way around. Thanks for allowing me to comment.
William Henderson