J Walking

J Walking

Evangelicals staying home, pt. 12,940

Ok, I may not have posted on this 12,940 times but I think I’m close. Anyway, an interesting piece in the Los Angeles Times:

A fundamental shift is transforming the religious right, long a force in presidential politics, as aging evangelical leaders split on the 2008 race and a new generation of pastors turns away from politics altogether.
The result, in the short term, could be a boost for the centrist candidacy of former New York City Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani, whose messy personal life and support for gay rights and legal abortion have not produced the unified opposition from Christian conservatives that many anticipated.
Over the longer term, the distancing of religious leaders from politics could prove even more consequential, denying the GOP one of the essential building blocks it has used to capture the White House in five of the last seven presidential races.
The shift is evident in this Rocky Mountain community at the heart of the evangelical movement.
“As far as me standing in the pulpit holding a voter guide, that’s not going to happen,” said the Rev. Brady Boyd, 40, who leads a congregation of 10,000 at New Life Church. He will use his position to teach the Bible to believers. “I won’t use it to influence their vote,” he said.
That suits many in his congregation just fine. “If he starts talking politics, that makes me very uneasy,” said Wolfgang Griesinger, 56, a political independent.
“It’s not his place to tell us who to vote for,” said Marsha Thorson, 54, a Republican who is leaning toward Giuliani.

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posted November 16, 2007 at 8:35 am

It was an interesting article. The fact that the divorce between some churches and the GOP is happening was no surprise, especially after I’ve read about it here 12,939 times but for New Life and Colorado Springs, that’s like the sack of Rome.

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Elvis Elvisberg

posted November 16, 2007 at 10:06 am

Now that it’s plain to everyone with eyes to see that President Bush and the GOP are unworthy idols, the dominant political Christianity is falling away.
But it’s not obvious what will emerge in its place. There’s a tension between living the message/i> of Jesus– love your enemies, divorce should be illegal, and whatnot– versus worshipping the icon of Jesus– he’s good, so I’m good, and other people are bad. Many of the latter group will be drawn to Giuliani.
Reactions can fall into either camp. Here’s an example of someone falling back on the message.
Maybe one can find an example somewhere of someone falling back on Christianity as a tribe that provides clear lines as to who to resent and hate. I leave this as an exercise for the reader.

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posted November 16, 2007 at 10:34 am

Andrew Sullivan is an example of a voice for Christians NOT to listen to. He’s a pompous Elitist selling debauchery in an intellectual wrapper. At the end of his day is the gay agenda. Not the Gospel of Christ Jesus. “Love” means doing the right thing. Unconditionally. Which of course logically shows the conditions of unconditional love are as immutable as the declaration of it.
From the link: “Gay marriage, abortion, and hawkish war policies, seem to drift from Christ’s central message of unconditional love.”
The “condition” for marriage is a man marrying a woman. That is what Jesus taught as immutable. It is certainly “unloving” to teach or promote something else. To Christians anyway. Men, are supposed to have unconditional love for their wife, and vice versa. Abortion is almost always for the continuation of sexual immorality. It certainly isn’t forgiveness. What does the unborn child have to be forgiven of? Where’s the unconditional love FOR the child? “War” is not a way to spread the Gospel. Jesus was clear that people were free to reject the Gospel. As Andrew Sullivan and his way of life does. “IF” there are voices from the hawish war promoters, that Christianity being spread is their message, they are as wrong as the promoters of same-sex marriage are.

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recovering ex-Pentecostal

posted November 16, 2007 at 10:48 am

“want decency and morality to make a comeback.”
Then you could start them off by doing to others as you would have them do to you, donny, instead of bearing false witness like “At the end of his day is the gay agenda.”
“Love” means doing the right thing.”
You sure can type that well, donny. Much harder to live it.
“The “condition” for marriage is a man marrying a woman.”
“That is what Jesus taught as immutable.”
More hogwash.
“It is certainly “unloving” to teach or promote something else.”
How would you know?
“Men, are supposed to have unconditional love for their wife”
Except homosexual men don’t have “wives”. Those of us who are married have husbands. DO try and keep up.
“As Andrew Sullivan and his way of life does.”
Sullivan does NOT “reject the Gospel”. God’ll get you for that one too.

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posted November 16, 2007 at 11:45 am

Hogwash or Biblical truth? A man can not have a “husband.” Which “one” of two men would be the master of the house? (The old norse concept that came down as “husband.) Jesus never mentioned same-gender marriage because there is no such thing. He didn’t mention the Tooth fairy, the Easter Bunny or santa Claus either. Same-gender marriage is a thoroughly un-Godly thing. I guess Jesus is a liar to Liberal theologians, but not to me. The history of the Hebrew/Israelites/Christians support the immutablity of marriage as a man and a woman. But hogwash to the typical rewriting of Bible’s inconvenient truth for the Liberal. Progressives are even worse.
“Except homosexual men don’t have “wives”. Those of us who are married have husbands. DO try and keep up.”
We’re forced to. You will not allow us our peace and leave us alone about your sexual propensities. We are forced by law to have to “tolerate you.” But the same is not applied to us. Homosexuality is a sex act. The Apsotles taught that you can get married once you repent of your sins. To a woman. Men don’t have “husbands.” Why, or how, can you even present such hogwash? Liberal/Progressive nonsense that’s how. God has dealt with that throughout the history of mankind.
Do whatever you want to do in your non and un-Christian life and lifestyle. But believe me, you will not succeed (nor will Andrew) in subverting and perverting the Christian Church. Not for long anyway. Even our youth know that. You’ll pick off a few children here and there, but NOT with the help of Christians. I’ve seen the facts of that. If Sullivan holds that “marriage” can be had by two men or two women as marriage partners, he is rejecting the Gospel there. I will take my stand on eternity and judgment, with marriage as a man and a woman. Jesus is not a liar to me. And that those that violate marriage, can be forgiven IF they repent of their sin. Jesus is not a liar there either. I’m confident on what God will and will not do to me about that. I do not hold to an altered New Testament for political correctness. It always boils down to the two issues of 21st century politics. And both have to do with sexual immorality being made acceptable and forced to be legal. But neither can be so in the Christian life.
I’m a recovering ex-Liberal-Progressive. Actually a traitor to their cause. So to speak.

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posted November 16, 2007 at 12:21 pm

I have long thought that the “great falling away” described in the NT was being realized by the growing numbers of people falling for the call of politico-evangelical Christianity. As time has shown us the leaders of this movement are more interested in power and money than in advancing the Gospel. What we see today in the unravelling of this ungodly movement is simply the Church returning to its first love…Jesus.
As the old guard in this movement dies off we see that there is nobody to replace them. The next generation has seen what this bastardized form of Christianity has to offer, and they are finding that it falls far short of the message presented in the Bible. Jesus did not come to empower a political party, he came to change the world.
Heresies have come and gone, but consistent throughout it all has been the solid message of love contained in the Gospel, the “good news”. Perhaps in a few more years the tired voices of the old evangelical wing of the GOP will continue to fade, and the Gospel will be restored to its rightful place in churches across the land. Maybe then the church will return to ministering to people instead of catering to politicians.

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posted November 16, 2007 at 12:55 pm

Well said RJ. A LOT of things will be straightened out by the proper preaching of the Gospel. Especially in regards to the family and marriage as Jesus taught it. Along with the tired old voices of the GOP disappearing, will be the old guard of the Democrat’s drugged out promiscuous and lascivious licentious voices of the sixties hippies turned greying Liberal-Progressives. Once their heresy is extinquished from the Church, then the New Guard can get on with Evangelism. I will go into my day with the future looking bright from your response.

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posted November 16, 2007 at 6:58 pm

Donny – if you’ll lay aside your James Dobson Study Bible for a moment, you will find that MOST of what Jesus had to say about the family/marriage in the NT presents them as an obstacle to discipleship or taking up one’s cross to follow him, of relevance only in this (short) life and/or brief clarification of OT teaching. Nowhere do you find him attending family reunions or going out of his way to nurture relationships w/ his earthly father, mother, brothers, sisters. If marriage/family is all that you make it, why didn’t Jesus get married and/or have a family. Because, as St. Paul also affirms, marriage and family is a diversion to wholehearted devotion to Christ.
There’s an idol in most North American Christian homes today – it’s not the TV, it’s the computer; it’s the family.

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Larry Parker

posted November 16, 2007 at 10:21 pm

This, IMHO, was a key turning point few people seem to recall:

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