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

Dogs Walking on Hind Legs and Women Preaching

"A woman’s preaching is like a dog’s walking on his hind legs. It is not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all.” (Samuel Johnson, 1709-1784, English writer).

"It is no harder for a woman to teach a mixed audience than to only women when one gets used to it. For there is neither Jew nor Greek; there is neither slave nor free; there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Jesus Christ." (Miss Abbie M. Colby, Missionary to Osaka, Japan, as quoted in Life and Light for Woman, March, 1888, p. 87).

In our day, when some evangelical Christians hear women preach, they feel like Samuel Johnson did almost 200 years ago.They're surprised, and they don't like it.

Allow me to introduce you to Frances Elizabeth Willard (1839-1898).

The famous evangelist, D.L. Moody (1837-1899) supported Frances E. Willard (1839-1898) in her pioneering attempts to change laws that forbade women from voting in public elections. After working with Willard on suffrage, Moody learned of Willard's ability to "walk on her hind feet" (e.g. "preach").

Moody believed in Willard's spiritual gift to proclaim the Word of God so much that he invited her to join him in his itinerant work as a fellow preacher. After traveling with Moody, preaching from pulpits across America, Frances Willard wrote her own superb defense of women preachers, a short pamphlet entitled Woman in the Pulpit,

A couple of well-known evangelical pastors commended Willard's book Women in the Pulpit with the following written statements:
"About the subject of a woman's preaching, let me say that I do not think the story of the Gospel will be fully told until Christian women all around the world tell it." (T. De Witt Talmage, 1832-1902, a prominent Presbyterian preacher in America)
"I cannot but feel that women have a greater Christian work to do than many of us have yet realized or admitted, and that they have it to do for the simple reason that they are divinely qualified to do it." (Joseph Parker, 1830-1902, Pastor, The City Temple, London).
Frances Willard graduated from Moody Bible Institute. Yes, that Moody.  The flagship of evangelicalism education in the 1800's, Moody Institute was founded by a woman, Emma Dryer, and D.L. Moody became, in effect, its first dean.

In addition to Moody Bible Institute, Wheaton College, Wheaton Illinois, was founded in 1860 by abolitionist pastor Jonathan Blanchard (1811-1892). Wheaton, upon opening its doors, became the first college in America to open all courses and programs to males and females, something Harvard University didn't do until 1943, and only then because of the pressures of World War II made male student enrollment impossibly low.

In a superb article published by the Reformed Journal, author and theologian Timothy Larsen talks about what happened at Wheaton in the late 1800's.
"There were women faculty members at Wheaton even in its first decade (1860s). Frances E. Townsley, a student at Wheaton beginning in 1867, was particularly influenced by Helen S. Norton, who taught her Latin. Townsley gave a paper at Wheaton College’s Aelionian Society that was so moving that it prompted Jonathan Blanchard (1811-1892), founder of Wheaton, not only to weep openly, but also to give her a semester of free tuition!
Townsley became a school teacher after her Wheaton days, but she subsequently received a call to ministry. She had already been teaching men in an adult Sunday school class for years. Her first Sunday morning sermon was at Lincoln Park Congregational Church, Chicago. She then began to preach regularly in Congregational and Baptist churches. One minister, who subsequently came to endorse her ministry, approached their first meeting with suspicion and hostility. He protested that men who desire to preach first went to college. Recalling that almost no colleges accepted women at this time, he was considerably disconcerted to learn that she had already fulfilled that requirement. He next protested that the men study courses directly related to the work of public ministry such as theology and homiletics. The astounding reply was that so had she. Again, Wheaton was probably the only college in America at that time where a woman could take a homiletics class. He then proceeded to test the mettle of her theological education by asking if she had read Walker’s The Philosophy of the Plan of Salvation, the leading evangelical work in the field of apologetics at the time. She was able to reply that not only had she read it, but she had been taught by the author (who was a member of the Wheaton faculty) personally, and that he had written to her to confirm and endorse her call to ministry!
In the mid-1870s, Townsley became a full-time preacher and evangelist. Numerous people were converted through her preaching. She specialized in reviving dying churches. This led on to serving as interim pastor for a succession of Baptist churches in need of a minister. In the late 1880s, she was called to be the settled pastor of the Fairfield Baptist Church in Nebraska. She refused to administer Communion, however, as she was not ordained. Townsley observed that Baptist men who were aspiring to ministry but had not yet been ordained often presumed to officiate at the Lord’s Supper at that time, but she “was a stickler for church order.” Her Baptist church therefore unanimously voted that she should be ordained. Following Baptist custom at that time, she was examined as a candidate for ordination by a council that included the ministers and other representatives from no less than 14 Baptist churches from the surrounding area – far larger and more representative council than was the norm. This Baptist council again voted unanimously that she was a suitable candidate for ordination. This decision was praised in the National Baptist newspaper (published in Philadelphia), which added, 'There is not a pulpit in the land she would not grace.'" 
I recently announced that a woman would be "preaching" at Emmanuel Enid.

One of our church members, very politely, stated objections to "a woman" preaching. I listened intently (this person objecting is a friend), and then responded to the objection that "women have their roles" (which does not include preaching), and only "men have authority to preach, not women" by just as politely stating the following points.
1. I used to believe what you believe because I was taught it. After examining the Scriptures for myself, I believe with all my heart that leadership in God's Kingdom is shared by men and women with the requirements being humility, not honor; gifting, not gender; and character, not control (see 5 Reasons Why Women Can Pastor God's People, Divine Authority Is Never Office or Gender Based, and more...).
2. The best argument against a woman not preaching at Emmanuel Enid is that it might violate "the convictions" of some church members (a few, but definitely not the majority). I must then choose between following what I believe to be the leadership of the Holy Spirit or peace with my friends. I believe I know what I must choose.
3. I never seek to "persuade" someone else that I am right - and they are wrong - on the issue of shared leadership based on spiritual gifts. On the other hand, since I am Lead Pastor, I must do what I believe the Spirit and Scripture demands. 
4. I suggested that my friends "take a break" on the Sunday a woman is preaching (three times in 2020), and I would understand (thought I don't like it), if they had to leave Emmanuel Enid because their convictions were different. My conscience is bound to the Word of God, not the approval of men. 
My granddad used to have a lame dog who learned to walk on its back feet. I had much respect for that dog. So too, I respect gifted women preachers proclaiming the risen Christ.

I've grown used to it.

It's biblical.

It's Kingdom oriented.

It's a sign that Spirit-led revival is coming.
"In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams" (Acts 2:17). 

60 comments:

George L. said...

I agree with you Wade, but I wonder if the Oklahoma Baptist Convention will eventually kick you out. Gene Garrison I remember was basically shunned in the SBC after he came out for women deacons.

Rex Ray said...

Wade,
Great Post!

https://www.beliefnet.com/columnists/news/2012/03/billy-grahams-daughter-ruth-has-been-through-the-fire-says-its-time-for-honesty

Billy Graham’s daughter, Ruth, states: She wants to hear what her readers are enduring. In fact, she’s willing to make a very personal promise: If you’ll write to her, commenting on her column “Safe Place: Being Authentic in an Inauthentic World,” she’ll write you back.

“I want to hear from you. I want to know what’s going on in your life,” she says, “I want to create a safe place where people can come and share anonymously.”

Ruth wrote: “And I don’t like the fact that the deep things of God are taught in suffering.”

Rex said: her life story is full of heartache and sorry, and I’ve heard ‘Man’s sorrow is God’s opportunity’.

Wade, I’ve heard that her father said she was the best preacher in the family.

Wade Burleson said...

George,

Grabbing a tiger by the tail is not a typically wise act. :) As you know, I served as President of the Baptist General Convention twice. I've been around the block a time or two (as they say), and if here's the difficulty with "kicking Emmanuel Enid" out of the BGCO (and me).

1. It rings hollow to claim "autonomy of the local church" on sexual abuse, but take "authoritative action over churches" that believe in shared leadership.

2. If a church stands on Scripture, then any religious action targeted scriptural churches will be the anathema for any Convention.

3. I have history, Scripture, logic, and Jesus on my side - but accept those who disagree - within my history loving, Scripture loving, logic loving, and Jesus loving church.

4. Any such action will allow me to speak before the entire Convention (or association) and I relish that opportunity.

Thanks for your comment.

Wade Burleson said...

Rex,

As always, your comments are always spot on.

I have a Billy Graham story about his family that not only affirms what you said, it forever convinced me (through Mr. Graham) that the New Testament advocates shared leadership.

I'll share it sometime later.

Rex Ray said...

Wade,

Thanks.
A long time ago, my two sisters shared the ‘honor’ with Billy Graham of being ‘removed’ from Bob Jones University.

Wade Burleson said...

Rex,

Wow - that is a lifetime achievement award indeed! :)

Anonymous said...

I absolutely agree with you viewpoint on the matter, but am wondering about your response to someone who cites this as a weaker brother issue? Ken

Rex Ray said...

Wade,

https://www.greenvilleonline.com/story/news/2018/02/21/billy-graham-had-rocky-relationship-bob-jones-university-and-its-past-presidents/360074002/

Bob Jones told Graham it was a shame with his voice, he could have gone far, but Graham would just be a pastor of some small church.

My sister, Ann, had the ‘audacity’ to tell the University they should have a ‘Student Council’ to handle discipline problems. (Her younger sister kept getting into trouble.) They replaced her roommate with a ‘spy’ that kept a list of rules Ann broke; such as listening to radio stations other than “Bob Jones station”.

The Dean of Women was confronting Ann with the broken rules when Bob Jones entered the room. He said, I smell evil! I want this girl off the campus tonight!

Wade Burleson said...

Ken,

Great question about the weaker brother.

If anyone who shares their concern about hearing a women teaching confesses to being "weak" in the faith and "struggling" with the Christian walk, and hearing a woman teach would cause them to become "weaker" in the faith and is liable to cause them to renounce their faith in Jesus, then I will consider it.

I do not for one moment believe I will ever hear that confession of weakness from anyone.

Bob Cleveland said...

Aime Semple McPherson seems to have been a pretty good preacher, and left behind a church that , as of 2000, had 8 million members.

Anonymous said...

Aware of what Aime Semple McPherson did? Not a good act to follow.

Women preaching could be a sign of coming apostasy instead of revival.

Bro. Wade, I hope you show as much respect for those who will absent themselves from hearing a woman preacher due to convictions as you do those who will listen.

linda

Wade Burleson said...

Linda,

Of course. Respect will always be given. That's grace. That's love. That's wisdom.

Anonymous said...

Wade,
I wandered over to your blog from TheWartburgwatch.com. I read your article with interest, but I didn't see any scripture passages referenced in it that would change my mind on biblically allowing a woman preach from the pulpit. That said, I fully believe that woman are MORE than capable of sharing the gospel and have done so phenomenally throughout history.
However, I am not aware of any scripture that would put a doing so. However, my understanding of scripture is that there are no scriptures supporting having a woman lead over men. Minister to believers? Yes. Spread the gospel? Yes. Encourage, reprove, love? Yes. Lead a church and pastor over men? No. Change my mind.

Kindly submitted,
Somewhereintime

T. J. Garrison said...

WOW! You had me near the beginning when you said, "Yes, that Moody!"

Anonymous said...

ANONYMOUS, have you even head a woman preach ?
https://youtu.be/XyoxUwdSnzA

Anonymous said...

ANONYMOUS, have you even head a woman preach ?
https://youtu.be/XyoxUwdSnzA

Rex Ray said...

Wade,

Any predictions on the outcome of the “Impeachment trial” by the Senate, and if Democrats or Republicans win in the next election for President?

Wade Burleson said...

President Trump will win re-election in a landslide.

Rex Ray said...

Wade,

I believe you speak like a prophet.

Was this baby saved by a miracle?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xOseiuSDsPs

The ‘bad guy’ tried to stab the person who followed him before police arrested him.

raswhiting said...

I am curious who will be preaching in 2020, the women I mean?
I approve of your decision, by the way.

Rex Ray said...

Wade,
In our SS lesson today, the Scripture of Isaiah 58:6 NLT seemed to ‘jump’ at me: “…Free those who are wrongly imprisoned…”

Sirhan was arrested for killing Robert June 5, 1968. Policemen said he had a blank-glassed-over look on his face, and was less upset than people arrested for a traffic violation. Sirhan said on that day, he was on a gun range shooting at balloons which indicated he was hypnotized.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/true-crime/wp/2018/06/04/the-assassination-of-bobby-kennedy-was-sirhan-sirhan-hypnotized-to-be-the-fall-guy/

“Even as Sirhan was being captured, seconds after the shooting of Robert Kennedy, he behaved oddly. A group of men had tackled him, held him down and tried to wrest the gun out of his hands. But in the middle of a hurricane of sound and feeling, wrote one of those men, author George Plimpton, Sirhan seemed peaceful. Plimpton was struck by Sirhan’s “dark brown and enormously peaceful eyes. A Los Angeles police officer said he had a blank, glassed-over look on his face — like he wasn’t in complete control of his mind.”

http://www.garvandwane.com/conspiracy/pruszynski_recording.html

Link states: “Stanislaw Pruszynski was a journalist who had recorded Robert’s victory speech with a cassette recorder. He stopped the video, but the sound recorded two shots, a pause, and then a rapid-fire of 11 shots. Two different times, two pairs of shots occurred so close together, they couldn’t have been fired from the same gun.”

Robert’s bodyguard, Thane Cesar, was behind Robert while Sirhan was in front of him. Two powder burns were on the back of Robert’s coat and behind his ear. Sirhan’s gun held eight bullets, but the Pruszynski tape recorded 13 shots. (Eight shots and five shots that were louder.)

Sirhan had 22 short-hollow-points that he’d used on a gun range. A hollow-point expands to look like a mushroom, while a regular 22 bullet keeps its shape. Cesar had 22 long rifles that would make a louder noise. Sirhan’s wild shooting wounded five people. Cesar wasn’t tested for firing a gun. Shortly after the shooting, Cesar went to the Philippines.

Sirhan was found guilty because someone with a lot of influence:
1. Kept jury from seeing autopsy that would prove Sirhan innocent.
2. Kept jury from seeing Sirhan’s mushroom bullets. (All bullets looked the same.)
3. Furnished lawyers for Sirhan that tricked him to plead guilty.
Also, the Pruszynski tape recorder that recorded 13 shots was not available.

Rex Ray said...


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grant_Cooper

This link states that Sirhan’s more recent lawyers has accused Sirhan’s lawyer, Grant Cooper of deliberately throwing Sirhan’s case because Cooper would not mention that Sirhan had been hypnotized.
https://books.google.com/books?id=Bxt1a2N6E4gC&pg=PA301&lpg=PA301&dq=cooper+would+not+mention+that+sirhan+had+been+hypnotized.+why&source=bl&ots=wX4aLxNmNs&sig=ACfU3U0k4vXjot35JkR5kfVSiutWB0gt5g&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwihuL3P8YLnAhWHAZ0JHV7rB7UQ6AEwAHoECBMQAQ#v=onepage&q=cooper%20would%20not%20mention%20that%20sirhan%20had%20been%20hypnotized.%20why&f=false

This link tells how much Sirhan liked Kennedy. “I thought that he was the prince, sir. I thought he was the heir apparent to President Kennedy and I wish the hell he could have made it. I loved him sir…He was the hope of all the poor people, sir.”

Robert Kennedy Jr. wrote:
https://www.irishcentral.com/news/robert-f-kennedy-jr-thane-eugene-cesar

“On June 5, 1968, Thane Eugene Cesar, an employee in a classified section of Lockheed’s Burbank facility, was moonlighting as a security guard at the Ambassador Hotel. He had landed the job about one week earlier. Cesar waited in the pantry as my father spoke in the ballroom, then grabbed my father by the elbow and guided him toward Sirhan.
With 77 people in the pantry, every eyewitness said Sirhan was always in front of my father at a 3-6 feet distance. Sirhan fired two shots toward my father before he was tackled. From under the dog pile, Sirhan emptied his 8-chamber revolver firing 6 more shots in the opposite direction; 5 of them striking bystanders and one going wild.
By his own account, Cesar was directly behind my dad holding his right elbow with his own gun drawn when my dad fell backwards on top of him. Cesar repeatedly changed his story about exactly when he drew his weapon.
According to the Coroner, Dr. Thomas Noguchi, all 4 shots that struck my father were “contact” shots fired from behind my dad with the barrel touching or nearly touching his body. As my dad fell, he reached back and tore off Cesar’s clip on tie. A photograph shows this tie next to my dad on the floor.
Cesar lied to police claiming that he’d disposed of the gun months before the assassination. Cesar was a bigot who hated the Kennedys for their advocacy of Civil Rights for Blacks. Police have never seriously investigated Cesar’s role in my father’s killing.”

An inmate stabbed 75-year-old Sirhan many times last year. He is only guilty of being hypnotized. What could we do to get President Trump to pardon him?

Gerry Milligan said...

Wade, your answer to a question by Rex stated your beliefs that Mr Trump would be re-elected. One of the great things about living in the United States is that fact that we have freedom of expression, no matter how far out it might be. As for me, a born-again follower of Jesus, I struggle to see how purported believers could support the draft-dodging, misogynistic, sexual abusers who has over 15,000 distortions of the truth. The Bible speaks to this, 1 Corinthians 15:33 33 'Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”' And I do not want to be seen in the company with his evil

Ken F said...

"As for me, a born-again follower of Jesus, I struggle to see how purported believers could support the draft-dodging, misogynistic, sexual abusers who has over 15,000 distortions of the truth."

Hi Gerry,
Are suggesting that the other side has candidates that you fully support in all respects? The problem with our current political situation is the cream sinks to the bottom and the sludge rises to the top. For whatever reasons, we have a system where good people either don't want to run for office, or if they do they get demonized by both sides. And if they actually get elected, they become corrupted by the system. And the press is not helping as they participate in dragging candidates through the mud.

I believe the stats about evangelicals supporting Trump are misleading. When a person has a choice of not voting at all, or choosing among the least bad of a pool of bad candidates, it's not accurate to describe their vote as "support."

Gerry Milligan said...

Ken,
Thank you for your kind comments. There are often times in which I choose to not comment because not everyone is as kind as you or Wade.
To answer your first statement, no, I am not saying who I do support, only the characteristics of who I do not support.
As to your second statement, I research candidates and I only vote for those I support. Are you saying that people vote for those they do not support?

Anonymous said...

https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/trump-responds-critics-rising-federal-spending-debt-deficit-presidency-fundraiser-2020-1-1028833452

Ken F said...

"Are you saying that people vote for those they do not support?"

Hi Gerry,
Yes, that is exactly what I am saying. When the candidate field is very bad there are not many viable options. One can boycott the election, which seems pretty pointless. Or one can vote for an independent candidate whi has no way of winning, which is pretty much the same as boycotting. Or one can vote for the candidate that will do the least amount of harm. I believe there are quite a few people who vote this way. I suspect the people who vote as true supporters is a much smaller group than those who vote with one hand while holding their nose with the other.

Gerry Milligan said...

Ken,
While I do not doubt what you are saying, but that is truly a sad commentary on our society; voting for someone for whom they cannot support. I only wish that all voters would examine each candidate and their character (or lack of same) before being an evangelical "knee-jerk" voter.

Anonymous said...

Ken F said: "When the candidate field is very bad there are not many viable options. One can boycott the election, which seems pretty pointless."

My opinion is if the net result of voting is 'do you want to get kicked in the groin or punched in the nose?', then boycotting isn't pointless as you suggest.

I like your previous comment about how the sludge rises and cream sinks - this is exactly what happened to Ben Carson. I know a good amount about his top notch professional life having customers and friends that had used his services for their children's heart issues many years ago. He's about as "righteous" as they could get for a candidate (highly intelligent and articulate man), but didn't go very far in the (s)election process. Even if he was (s)elected, no doubt he would be railroaded and setup like Flynn was - too much corruption in all the departments.

The average moral and ethical level of the typical American has declined tremendously in the last twenty years and we're currently seeing the fruit of it. A reset would be in order politically and socially, but that would be a super slim chance of happening.

Ken

Ken F said...

"My opinion is if the net result of voting is 'do you want to get kicked in the groin or punched in the nose?', then boycotting isn't pointless as you suggest."

Hi Ken,
To make the analogy accurate, everyone will get kicked or punched based on the collective vote. The people who boycott don't get out of getting kicked or punched, they just cede their opportunity to influence which one it will be.

Anonymous said...

Ken F - agreed you made the analogy accurate, but seems you failed to address the elephant in the room - the moral issue of said outcome. Last time I heard of folks getting punched or kicked, they got injured or killed. :)

If the church and Gov have similar parallels (and I believe they do), and folks leave a church in order to stop contributing to its abusiveness and duplicitious/deceitful activities, then I guess another option would be to emigrate. Interestingly enough, I've seen more and more people doing so. We seem to forget that tall/long walls keep people both in and out.

Ken

Rex Ray said...

“Kicked in the groin or punched in the nose?”

Which of the above is:

Stock market at all-time high.
Unemployment at all-time low.

Anonymous said...

are we profiting off of our own kids' futures?

we leave them with massive debt and an earth on fire while we celebrate a draft-dodging demagogue?

someone ought to slap us up the side of the head

you don't sell out your own kids' future for your temporary benefit

Ken F said...

Hi Ken,
The problem is different people view things differently. For example, many (if not most) evangelicals view abortion as murder. So if the choice is between a candidate that supports nearly no restrictions on abortion, is that a better or worse choice than an immoral person? Which sin is worse? Doesn't that depend on the eye of the beholder? To do nothing, by not voting, is to condone whoever gets elected. Opting out is an option, but I personally don't believe it is a very Christian option.

Anonymous said...

"“Kicked in the groin or punched in the nose?”

Which of the above is:

Stock market at all-time high.
Unemployment at all-time low."

Actually both are, Rex, when considered from the viewpoint that both are dependent upon the concept of sophisticated slavery, and its Master ignoring the massive debt. :)

Good thing the Kingdom of God prevails in spite of the distractions of the kingdom of men. :)

Ken

Gerry Milligan said...

I think that I am responding to Ken F, but anyone can read it.

"So if the choice is between a candidate that supports nearly no restrictions on abortion, is that a better or worse choice than an immoral person?"
I think that this would be a time to examine what a candidate actually espouses. Single issue evangelicals paint all democrats with this brush when many candidates believe in supporting women's reproductive rights. That does not always mean they support abortion (which is the single issue that evangelicals hold to).

Rex Ray said...

Is anyone keeping up with what’s going on in the Senate in the ‘Trial of Trump’?
Today, ‘Shifty’ Shift spoke for four hours. I think he used Hitler’s philosophy: “Tell a lie big enough and long enough, and people will believe it. He repeated the same lies over and over so long, it wouldn’t surprise me if some went to sleep. According to him Trump’s greatest crime is his phone call to Ukraine.

This link below has the phone call between Trump and President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine.

https://fm.cnbc.com/applications/cnbc.com/resources/editorialfiles/2019/11/15/CLEAN%20UKRAINE%20CALL.pdf

Trump: “I’d like to congratulate you on a job well done, and congratulations on a fantastic election.

Zelenskyy: “Good to hear from you. Thank you so very much. It’s very nice to hear from you, and I appreciate the congratulations.”

Trump: “That was an incredible election.”

Zelenskyy: “Again, thank you very much. As you can see, we tried very hard to do our best. We had you as a great example.”

Trump: “I think you will do a great job. I have many friends in Ukraine who know you and like you. I have many friends from Ukraine and they expected you to win. And it’s really an amazing thing that you’ve done. I guess in a way, I did something similar. We’re making tremendous progress in the United States. We have the most tremendous economy ever. I just wanted to congratulate you. I have no doubt you will be a fantastic president.”

Zelenskyy: Brags a long time on Trump and invites him to the inauguration.

Trump: Tells him a great representative will be there…” An incredible day for an incredible achievement.”

Zelenskyy: Says he’s looking forward a representative coming, and tells how great Ukraine is. Again, he asked Trump to come.

Trump: Asked him to visit the White House.

Zelenskyy: Accepts Trump’s invitation and asked him to come again.

Rex Ray said...

This link cannot copy/paste. I took pictures and typed from my phone. Trumped said his phone call was “A perfect conversation”, and his trial was a “hoax”.

Since Shift lied to the Senate and the American people, I believe he should be ‘impeached’ to prison.

Ken F said...

"Single issue evangelicals paint all democrats with this brush when many candidates believe in supporting women's reproductive rights. That does not always mean they support abortion (which is the single issue that evangelicals hold to)."

Hi Gerry,
It seems to me that both sides have their favorite issues to push, and both sides tend to misrepresent how the other side views it. I used abortion as an example because it so clearly illustrates the problem. But I could have used other issues, such as immigration, gun control, climate change, welfare, impeachment, LGBTQ, etc.

In my view, our culture is losing its ability to have meaningful dialogue. Instead, both sides entrench themselves in their own little ditches and hurl weapons of various sorts to the other side. Compromise has become a dirty word. And entering into respectful conversations with people from the other side has become taboo. This needs to change.

I would think that this is an area where Christians could lead by example. But I don't think we Christians are doing much better than the culture around us. For example, it turns out that I am apparently "liberal compromiser who denies the pure milk of the Word" simply because I believe the universe is much older than a few thousand years.

Gerry Milligan said...

Rex Ray, you said, "Since Shift lied to the Senate and the American people, I believe he should be ‘impeached’ to prison."

I would only interject that our draft-dodging CIC has over 15,000 untruths that he has uttered. So, are you suggesting prison for him?

Gerry Milligan said...

Ken F., you said, "Hi Gerry,
It seems to me that both sides have their favorite issues to push, and both sides tend to misrepresent how the other side views it. I used abortion as an example because it so clearly illustrates the problem. But I could have used other issues, such as immigration, gun control, climate change, welfare, impeachment, LGBTQ, etc."

What I find interesting about your list is that each item mentioned is an issue opposed out of hand by republicans and supported by democrats. This is exactly why I advocate digging deeper for each candidate, not be a "knee-jerk" conformity to a political party.

Ken F said...

"What I find interesting about your list is that each item mentioned is an issue opposed out of hand by republicans and supported by democrats."

Hi Gerry,
You appear to be making the mistake I warned about. None of the issues I mentioned are strictly binary. Not only are the issues themselves nuanced, so are the views of members of both parties. In the case of abortion, it is only a fringe on one side that opposes all forms of abortion during all phases of pregnancy, and only a fringe on the other side that believes in no restrictions at all. In reality, the vast majority of people fall between these extremes - most republicans reject completely banning all forms of abortion, and most democrats reject eliminating all restrictions. However, there are loud voices out there on both sides demonizing the other side for their extreme views. Instead of giving so much voice to the extremes, we would all be much better off if reasonable people could engage in meaningful dialogue. But I don't think that will happen if people will not look past the caricatures. We have to get past the tendency to mischaracterize individuals by clumping them into extreme categories.

Gerry Milligan said...

Ken F.
Unfortunately, I am in agreement with what you just said.

Rex Ray said...

Gerry Milligan,

In the first place, I don’t know what “CIC” means. (Google didn’t know either.)

However, Google does know: “Shifty-Schiff”

"Why did Nervous Nancy allow corrupt politician Shifty Schiff to lie before Congress?" asked Trump on Twitter Sunday. "He must be a Witness, and so should she!"

Gerry Milligan said...

Rex Ray,
CIC means commander in chief. And you can speak of corrupt politicians but ignore the draft-dodging CIC who continues to spew forth with untruths, daily? He is at 15,000+ thus far. Do you think those untruths were honorable?

Anonymous said...

"To do nothing, by not voting, is to condone whoever gets elected. Opting out is an option, but I personally don't believe it is a very Christian option. "

Ken F - how do you absolve yourself from personal responsibility from all the immoral choices (resulting in the loss of freedom or personal property, or death of people, etc.) made by your candidate if he or she were elected? Last time I voted there was no box to check to opt out of this. Ken

Rex Ray said...

Gerry Milligan,

https://www.snopes.com/news/2016/08/02/donald-trumps-draft-deferments/
This link states:

“Donald Trump became eligible for the draft on his 18th birthday (14 June 1964) and registered with the Selective Service System 10 days later. He received the first of four college deferments on 28 July 1964.”

I guess you could call my brother and I “draft-dodgers” even though we wanted to fight in Korea, but our father told us, “One man in a family is enough. You stay in ROTC.”

After graduating, over half of our class were killed by pilot error or mechanical failure. I was disqualified from being a pilot because I went to sleep on a motorcycle. (If I’d never done that, I’d never met Judy.)

Rex Ray said...

Gerry Milligan,
https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1953/09/our-mistakes-in-korea/376243/

This link states how we started fighting North Korea and our mistakes caused China to fight us.

https://www.google.com/search?sxsrf=ACYBGNRZsk9tldgpOnDuNtSxHjb_Zku0Bg%3A1579884774514&source=hp&ei=5iArXq7NHISKtQWUwarYCg&q=how+many+americans+died+in+the+korean+war&oq=How+many+Americans+died+in+&gs_l=psy-ab.1.6.0l2j0i20i263j0l7.4396.22585..30082...1.0..0.489.4125.11j9j5j1j1......0....1..gws-wiz.......0i131j35i39.DMjB_WOKaE8

This link states: “Almost 40,000 Americans died in action in Korea, and more than 100,000 were wounded.”

Obeying our father by not dropping out of college and fighting in Korea, probably saved our lives.

Ken F said...

"how do you absolve yourself from personal responsibility from all the immoral choices (resulting in the loss of freedom or personal property, or death of people, etc.) made by your candidate if he or she were elected? Last time I voted there was no box to check to opt out of this."

Hi Ken,
This is not a clean question because it presupposes that there are perfectly moral and viable alternatives. When both parties offer us deeply flawed and immoral candidates there is no way to absolve oneself. The best one can do is answer that the alternative would have been worse.

Your question also presupposes that there are commonly agreed up on moral standards for all the various issues. But there are not. Take any issue and you will find people from opposite sides using moral arguments that are complete opposites. For example, one side argues it's immoral to deny a woman her right to choose and the other side argues it's immoral to kill a baby in the womb. What drives this debate is vastly different ideas of what constitutes morality.

Rex Ray said...

Gerry Milligan,

My brother and I obeyed our father by not dropping out of college and fighting in Korea, reminds me of, “Honor thy father and mother: that thy days may be long…” (Exodus 20:12 KJ)

On March 10, we’ll be 88 if we don’t meet Jesus before then. (Our Dad met Him at 93, and Mother at 94.)

Gerry Milligan said...

Rex Ray,
I do not have a problem with donald trump being deferred because he was in college (not the Wharton Business School he brags about), what I question is his bone spur deferment. A bone spur of the heel is correctable in an office visit. By the way, I was just as vociferous concerning Bill Clinton's draft dodging.

By the way, Rex...something has been nagging at my feeble brain. I think that my wife and I went through Strategy Leader's Training, conducted by the IMB, with your son and daughter-in-law. Could that be true?

Anonymous said...

"This is not a clean question because it presupposes that there are perfectly moral and viable alternatives. When both parties offer us deeply flawed and immoral candidates there is no way to absolve oneself. The best one can do is answer that the alternative would have been worse."

Ken F - thanks for your thoughts. I think the systems we grow up in tend to blind us, or at least make us myopic in our attempts to see all of our choices or options clearly. Seems you've created a false dilemma out of my question, imo.

On the issue of responsibility - If a church elects elders (via majority vote) who, in turn, elect a senior pastor (via majority vote) who turns out to be on the surface a wonderful pastor for many years, but ultimately is found out to be a child molestor and an embezzler, then those that voted to elect the elders are responsible/culpable to some degree, and the elders who voted the pastor in are culpable to even a much greater degree. Those that abstained from voting out of personal conviction are not culpable (unless they knew something of the pastor's criminal history and said nothing). Am I missing something here?

Your framing my question as merely a choice between the 'lessor of two evils' doesn't mean there aren't responsible alternatives that someone else might make, and also doesn't absolve you from being responsible to some degree for the bad boy or girl behavior of your candidate you threw a vote for. We are talking about people's livelihoods and lives, and their offspring.

Were the Germans who voted for Hindenburg as President in the early 1930's culpable in any sense for the future crimes of Hitler (since Hindenburg appointed him as Chancellor, then later died and Hitler was then big chief) against humanity even though they didn't vote for Hitler directly?
I think the only reasonable answer is yes - to some degree.

There are other effective options that I could mention - the cycles of history bear witness to. :)

Ken



Ken F said...

"Those that abstained from voting out of personal conviction are not culpable (unless they knew something of the pastor's criminal history and said nothing). Am I missing something here?"

Hi Ken,
Yes, I do think you are missing something. While I agree with you that there are always other alternatives, in many cases the desirable alternatives have zero viability. In the case of the 2020 election there was no viable 3rd party candidate, which meant there were really only two choices. The anti-Trump citezens who stayed home are directly responsible for him being elected because they are precisely the people who would have made all the difference if they had voted for Clinton. How can those people absolve themselves?

Would the country have been better off with Clinton? Approximately half the county thinks yes, and the other half thinks no. And the polarization seems to be getting worse. The 2020 election appears to be giving more of the same. Who is responsible for that? The party leaders? The media? Registered voter? Unregistered voters? The oligarchy? Until enough people get interested in other alternatives we will pretty much be left with something very close to Hobson's Choice.

As to the issue of absolving oneself from personal responsibility, there is no end to where your logic could lead. That argument can be used to make every person guilty of just about every injustice. For example, you are responsible for hungry children unless you can prove that there is absolutely nothing more that you could have done. Same with pollution, climate change, federal debt, or any other issue. There is no way to escape the logic that you personally could have done more, or could have done differently, so therefor you have responsibility. I don't see how that kind of shamed-based logic helps to solve all of these problems.

Rex Ray said...

Gerry Milligan,

My son, Joe, and his wife, Beth attended the Strategy Leader’s Training in London, England in 1997. He is 6’2” and she is 5’2”. (They had a ‘discussion’ about the year being correct depending on which baby they had at the time.) They ended up with five boys.

The closest they ever came for a Muslim to accept Christ was when one said, “I’d be a Christian if I knew God would give me five sons.”

Anonymous said...

Ken F - sorry for the delay responding.

You said: " I don't see how that kind of shamed-based logic helps to solve all of these problems."

Ok, then lets narrow the field to atrocious criminal behavior. There is enough of that regardless of which wing you vote for - its still attached to the same killing bird/plane/machine. There were three bombs per hour of every day of every month dropped in the year of 2016. All in the name of national security. After Trump does his eight years the record might be broken.

https://theantimedia.com/3-bombs-hour-2016/

https://theantimedia.com/daniel-mcadams-twitter/

My conscience won't allow me to vote any longer.

Ken

Ken F said...

"My conscience won't allow me to vote any longer."

Hi Ken,
How does capitulation absolve you from responsibility? If you truly believe that Trump is evil, you will be responsible for him getting re-elected if you refuse to vote against him. Since opnions are already mostly crystallized, voter turnout is really the only factor that will determine which party will be in power in the two branches. I don't see how not voting absolves one of responsibility.

As to your bombing example, if you paid taxes you helped fund the killing. How do you absolve yourself from that? Did you do all in your power to stop it, or did you mostly condone it through inaction? Do you also plan to opt out of paying taxes?

Anonymous said...

Ken F - Voting is voluntary, but paying taxes is motivated by the threat of violence and force - i.e. coercion. I pay because I don’t want to be thrown in a cage. My parents volunteered me into the system. Huge difference.

Seems like at some point in the near future as things get worse your options are going to be similar to choosing between Hitler or Pol Pot, etc.., and maybe you’ll still sever the moral nerve by rationalizing the choice as legitimate and Christ honoring. I hope not.

Ps. I don't think Trump is all evil, but the system he entered into is getting more and more evil.

Ken

Ken F said...

"I pay because I don’t want to be thrown in a cage."

Hi Ken,
In the days of the early church, would you have been one of those who burned incense to Caesar as a way to avoid being thrown into a cage? You make it sound like you are saying you will violate your convictions for the sake of your personal comfort. And now you are trying to lecture me on morality?

Anonymous said...

Ken F - while I admit I'm a work in progress, I fail to see how your example of the early church equally applies to me. Trump isn't wanting me to confess him as Lord. If he would, I don't have plans to.

My comfort often comes first over my convictions in relation to GOV. For example: the state I reside in insists I need their permission to conceal carry, while I personally believe this violates my right to carry without their permission (according to the bill of rights and natural law). The penalty of not getting their permission is a felony, so I reluctantly comply.

Ken

Anonymous said...

Also, there are times when my comfort overrides complying with law. For example: My wife and I live in what most people would consider a glorified dog house, bathe with rain water, and am off-grid on a friend's farm. County ordinances would consider this to be illegal, but my long- term chronic health issues force me to keep my world as small as possible, so this works for now without their permission and I don't feel guilty one bit.

Ken