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“Historic Orthodox Christianity” (and “spiritual change”). The most appealed to authorities in conservative Christian debate

April 9, 2023

There needs to be a “biblical conservative” response to religio-political conservativism (especially “fundamentalism”)

They have long claimed to be “biblical”, and that any opposition to them is “anti-Bible”

Even in the Civil Rights era, the segregation-holding religious conservatives were allowed to turn the issue into one of “fidelity” to “the Bible”. It was basically the same as with evolution. You either take the Genesis “literally”, and believe in both the young earth 7 day Creation, AND the “curse” of Ham, or you reject the Bible, and follow the “ungodly world” views of natural descent, and “egalitarianism”. When nearly the only opposition to either doctrine took the latter view, it “proved” to them their hypothesis that they were believing “truths” from God, that mankind was naturally in rebellion against.

It seems no one really came out and directly challenged whether their readings of scripture (such as the “curse of Ham”) were truly scriptural.

It was just easier to reject scripture altogether, or at least minimize such portions of it (which were like virtual “admissions” that they were being properly interpreted in maintaining racism). So neither side saw any difference between Creationism and racism. They were allowed to “stand or fall together”; being from the same “Genesis”. People allowed racism to be portrayed as “based on a literal reading of the Bible”, and then when they wanted to question Creationism, which really is based on a “literal” reading, the fundamentalists could lump both issues together under the banner of “believing the Bible”, and then later use that to minimize the race issue, where they really had absolutely no ground to stand on, scripturally, and focus on creationism, where they did have a much stronger scriptural case.

Most criticisms of conservative Christianity have boiled down to them being “meanspirited” and “judgmental”, which they only respond with what they call “hard truths”, and thus further confirms to them that they are the ones who hold the “truth” (and are being “persecuted” for it).

In the race area, most mainstream “fundamentalists” today will profess to reject racism (“colorblindness”; and even go as far as to blame it on evolutionism now!), yet they quickly deflect by denouncing “wokeism”, “activism”, etc. and tag it all as “Marxist”. Then, they will claim the purpose of these movements is “redistribute” the wealth of the nation (and some supposedly “hard working” class), to these people who “refuse to work” (playing off of the same old racial stereotypes used ever since slavery, to justify that system and every other form of discrimination since).

The ultimate taboo obsession

The new “discrimination” issue that has risen to the forefront today is homosexuality. Unlike race, where they have buried the old sentiments behind the “colorblind” tactics, here, they (as we would expect) are firmly, openly standing their ground, and condemning not just the homosexuals themselves, but anyone who supports, or even does not condemn them hard enough.

This stems from an inordinate obsession the Church has had with sexuality (gay or straight), ever since, at least Augustine! Homosexuality was the last taboo; the ultimate “sin” to them (since they assumed it was based not just on “lust”, but on lust driving people to “unnatural” behavior), and while they’ve had to bend on race and other issues (grudgingly), this last area must be just “too much, already”!

Unlike the race issue of generations ago, this current generation has risen up to challenge the “scriptural” arguments in this area more.
However, the conservatives, with their “conspiracy against Biblical authority” narrative by now solidly entrenched and firmly in place (not having been answered well by those previous generations), just lump it in with “liberal readings of scripture”.

Pro-LGBT arguments have focused on the “eunuchs” Christ mentioned, the “arsenkoites” in the NT, and that perhaps even the original command of Leviticus may have been referring to something else (temple prostitutes and pederasty, etc). They do make good points in some of these areas, regarding the original Hebrew and Greek words, though I still find some of the conclusions farfetched. Some have even turned to David and other figures and have tried to say they implied homosexual relations. These I greatly question, and all the conservatives have to do is lump it into the “homosexual agenda” of “making everything gay”, without even really disproving them.

Another common defense is that Christians “make some sins worse than others”, which has been true, but to apply it to this issue is then basically an “admission” that you’re “sinning” and willfully continuing it —based on the premise that “others sin too”, which no one will accept as an “excuse”.

The Biblical, “Gospel” answer to this is that any condemnation of homosexuality was part of the Law (just as many other OT practices the Church now rejects).
When the conservatives scream against the dismissal of the Law and hurl out terms such as “antinomianism”, we must keep reminding them that they do not follow the Law either, and have decided for themselves which parts of it are still in effect or have been abrogated. (they are basically what are called “neonomians”).
And even with parts of the Law being maintained in the NT, the NT period is really an “overlap” of covenants, and the “Blessed Hope” they were all waiting for was the complete end of the condemnation of the “old age[“world”]” of the Law, which would occur in their lifetimes (Matt.16:28). This will be the hardest point to sell, since most Christians believe the “end of the age” is still future, and so the default condemnation and need to get “covered” continues indefinitely (whether by “faith”, “works”, “faith plus works”, “faith” defined as “works”, “proven by “works”, or minus works, with just “belief” as the “duty”, or just plain “unconditional election” of only some, with or without works, as all the various groups argue).

One evidence of this is that Romans 2:7-10 appears to teach salvation by works, and was used throughout Church history to teach that (until Protestantism came up with “Faith Alone”; and cults still use it that way, of course), but the context is those under the Law using it on others, but violating it themselves!

A big outcry erupted when President Obama bathed the White House in the “Pride” rainbow colors, around the time same sex marriage was legalized across the nation. Christians roared that this was an “in God’s face” mockery of the rainbow He gave Noah as part of His “promise” not to punish the earth with a flood again. For one, I don’t even think whoever created the Pride rainbow was even thinking of the Noah story. The colors represented other things. (But of course, Christians will surmise some hidden conspiracy, which may not have even been conscious).
But look at it this way; the Law (Leviticus, etc.) may have condemned homosexual acts, but the “rainbow” of Noah, being about God’s promise to mankind (Grace), foreshadowed the removal of condemnation, which was by the Law (and which still had some authority over the people in NT times, and was finally removed in AD70, though not recognized by the later Church, which still has mankind under the condemnation of the Law until some future event).

Here is one site’s response to the issue, which sums up their whole approach


Becoming a follower of Jesus includes honoring God’s vision for sexual relationships, whether through opposite sex marriage or in a life of sexual integrity through singleness. In Mark 10, Jesus reveals how He thought about human sexuality:

“…from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.” Mark 10:6-9 NASB

Within Jesus’s words “God made them male and female… two” are the Biblical mandate for sexual identity. No matter where we identify ourselves within the LGBTQ spectrum, before God we are none of these. He sees us as we are—the way He made us as a man or woman. Because God knows us as we truly are, we trust Him to renew our minds and our understanding of ourselves so that we may fully enjoy what He placed within us. Our identity as God’s sons and daughters enables us to fully belong within His family. We no longer need to identify ourselves by cultural labels.

In this passage, Jesus points to creation itself—not the Torah law—to understand marriage. He discloses that sexuality, expressed within a covenant only between a man and woman, is a vital part of human creation that uniquely reflects the Divine Image. This sexual union reflects something of God’s identity and personality, and hints at the nature of the Trinity. Marriage is not merely a “Law” or social construct. The theme of marriage is used throughout the Bible to help us understand God’s desire for an unbroken and purehearted relationship with humanity, and is highlighted at “the beginning” to demonstrate God’s particular care and concern about our sexuality.

The binary division of the sexes and the intimacy of “two” are vital parts of God’s message to us. By these, humanity reflects God in the miracle of creating human life. This is a profound mystery of reciprocal communion and fellowship with God. Christopher West points out in Our Bodies Tell God’s Story that men and women are complete, independent entities physically in every way except one: our sexuality. A woman cannot bear children by herself, apart from the reproductive system of a man, just as a man cannot bear children apart from the womb of a woman. They must have each other to be fully expressed.

CHANGED does not believe that sexual union between two people of the same sex adequately reflects the identity and purposes of God in humanity. Such a view actually distorts our understanding of God.

Human sexuality provides a shadow of understanding of God’s intent for intimate, joyful, and unbroken relationship with humanity. Therefore, Jesus’ mission to redeem our identity as His image bearers includes restoring all facets of our lives through the power of the Holy Spirit. To embody God, we must be reconciled to our physical and emotional maleness and femaleness, protecting sexual intercourse for marriages that express Jesus’ self-sacrificial and unconditional love.

They have here gone to great lengths to universalize binary gender, and tie it to the “nature of God”. (Notice, the jab at the notion of the commands being from the “Torah law”). This permanently fixed Him to our earthly existence. It leads right to the old argument of fundamentalists that there cannot be life elsewhere in the universe, because we, and we alone are “in the image of God”. The new-evangelicals have dropped that part of it, but are still holding onto this related view. On one hand, they claim this creation is totally corrupted, and God needs to come and destroy it, and recreate it from scratch, and with no sex. But for now, that one part of our existence is everything to Him!

You can see here how Augustine and the Church after him basically become right on everything; the obsessive focus on sex. You can conquer and kill whole nations of other people, and it’s not only OK, but God is likely the one who sanctioned it! That doesn’t “violate His nature”! They were “godly”; compared to today! But just as long as the society as a whole is sexually “pure”, or at least “modest”. Then, to throw the Trinity in there is a further attempt to tie it to the “eternal submission of the Father to the Son”, but this actually eternalizes the “subordination” of the Son, in an ontological fashion (rather than simply “economical”, which was the pre-Augustinian position), which was at that same time in Church history considered a total heresy that denied the Son’s full equality (similar to the Arians, but just moving the “generation” of the Son from Creation, back to past eternity! It is still an unequal division within the eternal Godhead!) We already saw this idea in the organization that produced the big evangelicalism-wide Statement on homosexuality.

They on one hand will say God has no gender, but of course, in the past, it was generally taken for granted that “He” was male; the pronoun is male, for crying out loud, and we still use it, and those who represented Him in art generally drew an old man.
Now, more modern theologians have adopted a “God’s nature includes both male and female elements” view, with such scriptural portrayals as a mother hen, etc. which are generally also used by more liberal viewpoints as well (including those who want to address God as a “Her”), and you would think that would be good, for the modern cause of feminism; but we can see here where this will be used against nonbinary sexual identities and nonhetero orientations (though technically, it could itself be considered a nonbinary identity, as I’ve seen a few articles claim!)

These two arguments (the “spiritual change” concept, and the “God’s nature” argument) are the leading, assumedly ultimate, irrefutable cases they have come up with, and what need to be addressed in a more biblical, theological response.

My first argument is that Christ’s affirmation of “male and female” in marriage indicating we have to live that out in our sex lives is an assumption, and not a “biblical statement“.
But this is what “historic orthodoxy” always does; as can be seen in claiming the later creedal languange of the Trinity, is a “biblical statement”. It’s something the Church put together later, in opposition to other teachings, and then read it back into select scripture statements which were admitted to not be directly “teaching” it, but rather “hinting” it. (Though some, as we see, are ironically willing to compromise even that doctrine in this issue!) This is the same with an official change to Sunday, formally paid leaders, Catholic “oral apostolic traditions” (which include those things), etc. And the IFB’s assertions about what constitutes godly or “ungodly” music. Or Campbellists’ and Primitive Baptists’ “regulative principle” on the use of instruments in the church altogether!

When it’s all put together, this then adds up to scripture “clearly teaching” it. No other possible interpretations are allowed. (In Jungian type theory, this is by a perception process called “introverted iNtuition”. You take disparate bits of information, and “just know” it comes together in a particular, set way. This will even seem like divine revelation and be very “universalistic”, since it’s not really based on the tangible evidence. Some have said “inferential doctrine is just as valid as clear statements”. Then, a judgment process called “extraverted Thinking” appeals to established external authority such as “historic consensus of the Church” as determining “truthfulness”).

I also offer celibacy (which we see they affirm) as technically violating this “divine pattern”. But of course, since that is allowed and even somewhat encouraged for some in scripture, it will be seen as a legitimate exception (and especially since it’s one where there is presumably no sexual pleasure involved). But this still contradicts the arguments, above, of “the intimacy of ‘two’ are vital parts of God’s message to us. By these, humanity reflects God in the miracle of creating human life”. People who frowned on celibacy (such as ancient Israelistes) could then say that forces a different interpretation of the scriptures mentioning celibacy, or reject them as scripture to begin with (especially since they were “New Testament” anyway)!

To the double standard of saying the world is corrupted and to be replaced anyway, they will appeal to before the Fall. But this doesn’t change the fact that they, taking from Christ’s message to the Sadducees, believe we will not be exactly like Adam and Eve, including regarding “marriage and giving in marriage”. So then how can that state of humanity be so much to God, what these teachers are making it out to be? (This is the same as the argument of sabbatarians, that the 7th day Sabbath was “God’s memorial of creation”, which they too, as the premier Millennarians, believe He is going to come and destroy it (yet this somehow proves this “memorial” of this creation to be “eternal”); while “historic orthodoxy” claimed the sabbath was supplanted by an “eighth day”; i.e. the first day of the following week, as pointing to a new creation. Neither group (fully united on homosexuality) sees the inconsistency of their arguments.

But what I’ve suggested is more an argument of what scripture does not say, which tends not to seem as strong as positive claims of what it [supposedly] “does” say. So there needs to be more of an addressing on these points, rather than thinking the current alswers alone disprove them.

But in any case, the different conservative groups all agree that homosexuality is wrong, from being “unnatural”, and that God will “cure” it “supernaturally”, and if one is not cured, it was really because of their “refusal to give up their sin”. There seems to be such “unity”, on this “historic orthodox” position! Yet, one’s strong stance on homosexuality means nothing if you’re seen as erring somewhere else. This particular ministry likely falls within the “new evangelical” category, and so others like IFB’s will still see them as “compromising” on “modern Bible versions”, and various issues of “separation” and “therapeutic” concepts (especially given they mention stuff like “our past traumas”. You only need to just mention those things to be accused of “psychoheresy” and preaching “other gospels”!) Those who are bigger on getting the Trinity right may condemn them for subordinationism. To Catholics and Eastern Orthodox, they’re all wrong on not following the “one holy catholic church”.

Something is just severely wrong with a Church that across the board appeals to “divine guidance” (i.e. by the Spirit who will “lead you into all truth”), yet is so fractured on important doctrinal issues.
(And “united” only on issues like this, regarding control of other people’s behavior! I dwell on the homosexual issue so long, because this is really where the Church is rising up, to offer what looks like a “united” voice, with the appeal to the “historic” position. But in reality, this unity is totally illusory, and only reflects the “unity” in this case being a “historical” obsession with sexual issues).

The appeal to the Spirit as the ultimate condemnation

The Spirit of God is appealed to as offering people “help” in resisting an otherwise unmitigated pull of nature to instincts such as sex, pleasure and other “sins”. This is now the number one argument against the homosexuals. Even those who completely abstain from the act, and are celibate, or even go as far as to force themselves into a hetero marriage (in the name of “surrender”) are still condemned by some if they testify to “struggle” or a non-hetero “sexual identity”.

I should add at this point that I also see there are actually names for the different levels of LGBTQ position in the issue “Side A” is totally affirming, while “Side B” is basically the common modern view that you can hold the identity, but just don’t “indulge” in it. “Side X” would be the “ex-gay” movement. So what I’ve been pointing out is that sides B and even X are still being criticized as “denying the power of the spirit” if they don’t eradicate every inkling of gayness. This is likely by those who would fall under “Side Y”, which focuses on the concept of our “identity”, as the above site does. (This would basically be the [racial] “colorblind” analogue in this issue! The link says “And unlike Side X, Side Y does not strive to make all Christians heterosexual” and thus places it “between” B and X, but apparently don’t realize that hetero is basically the default position in the view; they’re just removing the label. They are clearly more conservative than X, [whom they also condemn as denying the power] and are held by groups such as the IFB’s and I believe, the Lordshippers).
The site also says “It should be said that Side A has no scriptural basis whatsoever”, even though it listed their scriptural arguments and didn’t even refute them there. It adds: “The other Sides have varying degrees of biblical support. It is up to Christians to study, pray, and decide for themselves whether Side B, Side X, Side Y, or somewhere in between, best represents their convictions.” Yet even with this somewhat limited “tolerant” approach, they still accuse each other of being unscriptural; namely the more strict position to the less strict! Side B in particular thinks it is being reasonably “balanced” and “sensible”, but this only garners criticisms of “compromise” from Sides X and Y, but also charges of being “just as homophobic as X and Y” by the LGBTQs themselves! They end up pleasing nobody! The only thing agreed on by sides B, X and Y is condemning Side A!)

The formulaic answer given by those condeming the less strict “sides” is that it’s a “complete denial of the Holy Spirit’s power to change one’s thoughts and desires upon repentance and faith.” This has also been used for every other problem man has had, whether “anger and bitterness”, addictions, and even “all psychological problems” (among the IFB Jay Adams followers), etc.

But being this is generally admitted to be “unfelt”, it is not well defined, or it is expounded as a series of mechanical daily ‘steps’ that will change our behavior and our thoughts (paralleling Cognitive Behavior Therapy, and other disciplines the “unregenerate” world practice, and the conservative Church condemns as “godless humanism” when not expressed in a “biblical” frame and terms. (A related term, “God’s purpose for your life” is likewise not well defined, and usually ends up assumed to be some Church or evangelism related “service”, and for women, may just be being a good wife and mother). Yet another one is “the will of God for your life”, and especially the variant “doing the will of God”. This also is typically generalized to right behavior and spiritual activities).
They tell you this “change” is not “instant”, it’s a “process“, yet first, “upon repentance and faith” sounds instant; and sure enough, they harshly judge people (as not “showing signs” of repentance or faith) as if it were to be instant! (Hence, the condemnation of even Side X, while chastizing Sides A and B for ‘giving up’ on their “new identity” when “just offering prayer or fasting” didn’t work!)

It’s really about fighting against it for the rest of your life (for we deserve the discomfort after all, and it is far better than the “Hell” we really deserve), and “positively confessing” basically (though noncharismatics won’t use this term) “victory”, as if the desire was taken away. That’s what represents the instant “change”! (The “secular humanists” at least admit that such a “process” is all on individual human effort in his own “inner strength”. The Christians say it’s “God’s work”, yet then condemn people for lack of good “choices”. We see here the original Calvinist “God’s sovereignty; man’s accountability” premise, which is still present even in Arminian “free will” theology in areas like this).

This is all based on an assumption that the Gospel (or “salvation history”) is about a “tug of war” between God and Satan, where Satan’s goal is to use behavioral “freedom” or “good feelings” to set man at odds with God. Man’s “fall” then became a state of deliberate animosity towards God, (which God “ordains”, and yet holds “helpless” man “accountable”), God became infinitely angry at man and cursed him with a physical life of deliberate pain (hardships, etc.), and an eternal existence of intense suffering, and “grace” was His making an exception (at least for the eternal pain) of a “chosen” people who would be “fixed” to show good behavor, and be persecuted by everyone else who are God’s “enemies”.

So in this scheme, Satan is seen as using pleasure to lure man against God, and God (and His Spirit) are the accusers, using shame and the Law (and later, “conscience”, and leaders and societies maintaining knowledge of “good and evil” to judge all by) to try to fix man (“or else!”), and the Son was His means of showing “Grace” and “Love” by saving the “elect”.

But in the actual scriptural revelation, the Fall was the taking on of the knowledge of good and evil, and shame was its result, which is what led man to run and hide from God, and God then to have to move to be the one to reconcile with man. Satan was the one who “accused” men with the Law, and deceived those who claimed to be God’s spiritual institutions, not to “softening” down teaching of the Law, but to hype it up against the people (while secretly violating it or its true intents themselves).

The “power” (John 1:12) offered by the Spirit was the ‘right’ to be children of God (Rom.8:16), in the face of these accusations by the corrupt institutions.

The FEAR motivation

The final answer to that is that Jesus said that “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” is the fulfillment of the Law, and other scriptures mention love, as opposed to fear.

They will say if you teach unconditional grace, then it becomes making it “OK” to sin; but under this assumption, fear then becomes the only reason to repent, and it doesn’t stop those set on doing something anyway; it just scares less resolved people into compliance.
(Those not scared simply ‘confirm’ the ‘deliberate sin’ premise, so we want the world divided between the scared compliers and the deliberate “rebels”, which supports the binary “us vs them thinking of conservative religion).

They claim that removing all fear leads to society running out of control, but this is when we can mention stuff like slavery, colonialism and all the evils of the past, where they HAD that “fear of God”, the tough preaching that swayed everyone, great “revivals”, prayer, public reverence for God, [outward] sexual morality, etc. but society as a whole still decided that these OTHER acts they did to other people didn’t matter. Or, they appealed to scriptures (mainly from the Old Testament, such as “kill the heathens”), and then claimed they were in fact on the side of scripture.

So then, fear must not be what controls sin! It didn’t control it then! (Only certain select behaviors, and even then, rules and restrictions often went way overboard). That in fact was the whole lesson in the Gospel, which the people back then in Bible times missed, and the church afterward followed suit!
It only forces sin to be hidden; selectivized as to what is sin or not, and from there, that which society deems acceptable is even justified with scripture. Those fear-preaching leaders will enjoy the control they have over people’s behavior and lives, but it will not be about REAL righteousness (that is, until later generations rebel against their authority; then they will complain of being under “attack”). So this CONTROL is the real aim here!

Their own beloved historical leaders operated on a theology that contradicts this! Leading Reformer John Calvin said that conversion due to “mercenary affections” (trying to get something from God— a pardon from Hell, rather than coming to Him out of ‘love’ for Him) would not save!
Anyone who has ever received Christ after being warned of Hell or told the benefits of Heaven can fit into this category! Who then can be saved, really?

“Fundamentalist” Arminians and “Lordship” Calvinists alike loudly necessitate this fear method of scaring people into being saved (lamenting “all the modern preachers” who don’t preach like this anymore), but according to the original teaching, if they came in because of being scared/fear, they’re not saved! None of them ever thinks of this when praising the “revivals” that followed the ideal they hold up, of Spurgeon and Edwards’ preaching, after people “clenched their seats” in fear! All that mattered was that the fear motivated them to better behavior, good “works”, and more religious “fervency”, such as increased church attendance, and don’t forget, obedience to the leaders, and voilà; there, you have a great “revival”! Regardless of whatever else the peoplel or society may do). Yet according to Calvin, the people were not saved; but it sure was beneficial in getting people under control!)

It should be clear this teaching is of pure evil, straight from “the enemy” (the spiritual one, that is)! But it seems nobody has even questioned this, including the “contemporary” Christians who are being criticized for turning away from these old standards. Thus, nobody ever tries to refute it (and its associated “sin=deliberate animosity against God” and “Satan=pleasure dealer” foundations) scripturally. It’s just easier to call them “judgmental” and just toss out terms such as “love” without ever expounding it scripturally.

The one sided area of “Repentance”

“Repentance” ended up as the sword (i.e weapon) always used by the more conservative, holding on to and defending old ways. Progressives (including moderates) generally declare the old ways to be too restrictive, or “mean”, “unloving”, etc. and then just proceed to try to change them, in both their own behavior, sneak the new trends into the older institutions, and eventually, when they gain some social power, enforce them through what is now dubbed “cancellation” (censorship). But they have not so strongly come up with more logical arguments; and on the Christian front, more scriptural arguments; or, commands of “repentance”. (Ironically, the conservatives end up going from stereotypically anti-intellectual, to becoming the ones claiming “logical” fact!) That the old ways were not just “mean”, but also morally, and most importantly, scripturally wrong, and (just as much as any “modern”-day sin), needed to be repented of. But that is not apart of their vocabulary. It’s always the more conservative telling them to repent, and them appearing to simply “ignore” it and “do whatever they want”. This just ‘confirms’ to the conservatives that what they were preaching was “the truth” all along, and like with parents (or Biblical “Israel” in the days of the prophets), the “rebellious children” are totally wrong.

With this seeming validation firmly in place, the beliefs become completely grounded, and the liberals and moderates wake up one day to find all their “progress” threatened. (Most glaring example, Roe vs. Wade! Within the conservative Church, I could picture possibly a resurgence of ‘old-line’ thinking, and perhaps ignoring some differences and coming together, now that the “godless world” is ‘really‘ coming against them now, with issues such as homosexuality and more active “wokeness”. Moderates again ignored the old-liners, and yet the music and worship changes, and spiritual and doctrinal apathy and other trends they condemned have gone further and further seemingly off the deep end. Some observing this may finally see that the old-liners “were right all along”; we “never should have left ‘the old paths’; they were ‘safer ground’ after all” [which is why they still respect, and won’t criticize them now], and begin renouncing all the modern trends, and “return” to the old “fundamentalism”. We can see in this article the increasing appearance of a radicalized form of fundamentalism).

Like looking at Jeff Durbin’s “Dissenter” (dsntr) page and an increasing number of similar ones, you see a lot of harping on “modern evangelicals”, and the common targets, the televangelists (Osteen, Jakes, Myers, etc.) As much as he aims for “dissension”, conspicously absent are groups such as the IFB’s (including the KJVO’s), who denounce his movement; apparently, MacArthur “Lordshippism”, (which still falls within the category of “new-evangelicalism”). You would think they would be on the same page, as they say a lot of the same things, regarding both doctrine and secular affairs. The pages resemble each other, with all the modern “false teachers” listed throughout the page. Both are harshly criticizing evangelical trends, along with Catholics, cults and the world in general, and even the SBC (which to the “world” has traditionally been seen as the ultimate epitome of “fundamentalism”, yet is now being denounced by IFB’s and Lordshippers alike).
Yet the IFB’s still see MacArthur and his circle as “compromising” when it comes to “separation”; just like the rest of the new-evangelicals. Since the IFB’s are not doing the things they see the other groups as doing wrong, they probably figure they are “preaching the truth”, and so are not the problem, and perhaps ultimately, “on their side”. Yes, they are more strict than we are, and “don’t agree” with us, but their strictness is at least better than what all of these others are doing! So just ignore them. I’ve seen articles in CRI finally respond to the Bobgans (the leading IFB Jay Adams “Biblical Counseling” teachers), but seem agree with the simplistic “spiritual help/transformation” principles such as “curing” fear of the dark simply by telling the counselee that “Jesus is the Light”. So of course, CRI and others will not respond to them on that point, which is really the basis of their whole denunciation of “therapy”, and consistent with what the modern church still preaches, regarding the Spirit. (And as I said, that actually is the same thing basically as CBT; which emphasized “changing your thoughts, to change your feelings, and then actions”. Recall, the spiritualized “change one’s thoughts and desires”. In both views, it’s a process of “changing your thoughts” as the start of the “process”, but in the latter view, made “supernatural”, and thus a cudgel against anyone who “struggles” or doesn’t get over something. Hence, the whole “Side A/B/X/Y” judging in the gay issue).

So we end up with the criticism going one way, making the most conservative feel as if they are unrefuted, and in fact, unrefutable. Everyone then “punches downward” to those the less strict, whom they can claim as “less obedient” to “the Word of God”. Only when going after “the cults” (meaning those who err on the Godhead and other similar “historic orthodox” issues), do then they punch upward to the more strict (and then will claim stuff like “faith alone”, even though they essentially deny it when going back to criticizing the less strict body of the mainstream church).

For an example of this apathy I have seen, when I was in an IFCA church for awhile, and once or twice told “evangelical” brethren what the IFB teaching I was exposed to said about their music and worship, they told me “If you’re in that church, submit to them!” (Like they’re trying hard to prove themselves “the bigger person” and be so reverent to “the Church” and its authority, regardless, and to “not judge another man’s servant” (i.e. Rom.14:4) as one once told me. The IFB leaders certainly wouldn’t return the favor. They would never say that to me if I told them about the evangelical and/or charismatic churches I had been involved with. They would tell me, squarely to get out of those churches as they are “false”! I should have told those people, if I did “submit” to them, I wouldn’t be here talking to you friendly, but rather preaching at you, as a “compromiser”!)
To the “new-evangelicals”; either they’re right and you’re wrong (“compromising”, etc. and then why aren’t you “repenting” of this?) or they’re wrong and slandering the Gospel (evangel) as supposedly being represented by you! (And so why aren’t you defending the Gospel, as you do against supposed “outsiders” like the “cults”?)

A lot of tough pronouncements on “THE TRUTH”, but no UNITY!

But it shows, that no matter how “strict” a path you follow, someone more strict will come along and acuse you of “compromising”. An evangelical will condemn my criticisms of futurist “duty faith” as too “universalistic”, and defense of LGBT as “liberal”, and it’s like I should re-adopt their beliefs. But when I did agree with them on those positions, I saw the IFB’s and Lordshippers accusing us of stuff like not being “holy”. I could give into the Lordshippers and become one of them, but the IFB’s will still say our music and worship are too “modern”, and we’re not standing against the Catholics enough. If I become an IFB, the Lordshippers and other Calvinists will say I believe in a “weak god that depends on man” in salvation. So I can join some group that combines elements of both (like Spurgeon’s church), but now all I have done is take the “lowest common denominator” of “toughness”, and it’s no longer any “Good News”. For all the talk of “orthodoxy”, there is just no unity; only a bunch of men trying to sell their views and control others through tough talk. (Just like in the larger secular world). For every group you listen to and obey, there’s always another one saying it’s not enough!
They’ll all brush off using others as an “excuse”, and tell me to “read the Bible on my own”, but that’s precisely what I have done, and they seem to all be wrong. (Which is possible, while it’s not possible for them to all be right). They’ll cite 1Co 2:14 “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” So your not coming to their understanding is simply proof you’re spiritually “dead” (so nothing you can argue is valid). Yet everyone is claiming this (including groups considered “cults”! Herbert Armstrong quoted it all the time, and really sounded convincing with it!) Telling me to read it for myself (or also, to “follow the Spirit”) was only under the assumption that if I really did, I would see it promotes their view. Anything else, I’m misreading it, or ignoring the Spirit, to provide an “excuse” to “hold on to my sin”. (And that includes aspects of each others’ views!) So now, we’re right back to where we started! Again, who should I listen to? Any of them? Or myself? Or the “spirit” (but only if it agrees with their views)?

“The conviction of the Spirit” in past society’s sins?

Conservatives will often respond that the horrors of the past were “just the way people did things” back then.
But it must be pointed out that this relativizes morality, which is precisely what they have condemned modern society for!

The answer to that is to point out the double standard, and that they are simply being held up to the impossible standard they are holding the world up to. Jesus had said “with what judgment you judge, you shall be judged” (Matt.7:2), and they should not complain, as if they are above this principle.

The world naturally, understandably and rightly questions a morality demanded of them, with “no excuses“, and supposedly empowered by the Spirit through “conversion” (regeneration, sanctification etc.), when it didn’t really work that way in practice for the “model” Christian Church and society of the past that is upheld as the godly ideal.
If you reject this point, we end up with a “do as I say, not as I do” situation, which is just pure control, and with so many people in the world trying to control others, via different means, then why should they believe you?

If the Spirit can cure homosexuality, mental problems, or anything else as conservative Christians claim, when why didn’t it correct (convict, reprove, etc.) slavery and colonialism, and the upholding of discrimination for centuries afterward? Why, when Christians (from leaders on down) back then read the scriptures (which the Spirit is supposed to “enlighten” us to read properly), and came to Genesis 9:25-27 “And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren. God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant“; why didn’t the Spirit direct them to just one verse earlier (24), which tells us who “he” is: NOAH, not God is the one who uttered this curse (and God is never shown granting it; let alone to the present!) Or 2 Cor.6:4 “Be not unequally yoked”. With whom? Another “race”? Just read the next two words: “…with unbelievers”! Yet it was used to justify segregation and condemn “miscegenation”, even if both parties were believers! (and then, fundamentalist institutions holdig oto this reading until recent years are angry at new-evangelicalism for not “separating” from Catholics and “modernists”, when they themselves have not even read the passage properly!)
The plea of “we’re still only human” will only go so far when you’ve loudly told the rest of humanity there were “NO EXCUSES” for “human error” (including wrong scripture exegesis), and claim the enlightenment of the Spirit! These were terrible reading comprehension errors that men don’t even need the Spirit to have read properly! Christians claim one is supposed to read the whole Bible, not just a verse here and there, so how did they even miss the previous verse or even a second half of the verse that “interprets” the following verses itself?

In a typical statement, Peter Masters (of Spurgeon’s Metropolitan Tablernacle, and is respected in IFB circles) has been quoted: “When I was a youngster and newly saved, it seemed as if the chief goal of all zealous Christians, whether Calvinistic or Arminian, was consecration. Sermons, books and conferences stressed this in the spirit of Romans 12.1-2, where the beseeching apostle calls believers to present their bodies a living sacrifice, and not to be conformed to this world. The heart was challenged and stirred. Christ was to be Lord of one’s life, and self must be surrendered on the altar of service for him.”
But what they fail to realize is that “bodies” is not just talking about sexual behavior, or drinking (and other pleasure-related things as people assume with these ridiculous fixations the Church has had!) It’s what you actually devote yourself to; whether Christ and His Gospel, or a false “gospel” of dead works! (which are often done and pitched under the banner of such aterms as “consecration” and “service”!)

As always, we get into the assumption that this Anglo-American Christian culture the “old-liners” hold up was so godly. These people hate the race issue, but then that’s because it’s a big spot that destroys their whole premise! So you really insist their “selves” were all “surrendered” in “service” to Him back then? (They seemed too busy making others surrender to them!) It’s just a matter of what works one considers “service to Him”, or “service to self”. All decided according to what exalts what one identifies with, and demonizes others!
Plus, the Church of previous centuries said the same things about stuff the old liners uphold, such as what’s now the ‘old’ music style, for instance (which Masters has been a big defender of); even down to common chords and church instruments being of “the Devil”; etc. so they wouldn’t see that generation as “consecrated” either!

The real truth to be told, is that the race and class issues are deemed simply unimportant to God (and only illegitimate, ungodly “Marxist” agendas for the purpose of taking something away from “God’s” people or nation), as men deserve suffering anyway; while only sexual behavior and reverence for God (and some other cultural and political issues) are important.
They dismiss race as just some modern “woke” issue of the Left, but don’t realize that it only seems this way because they have overfocused on the issues they have defended and preached as most important. (Mostly sexual issues, and the influence religion “should” have), and minimized an issue they didn’t want to deal with because their beliefs or the previous society they identified with were guilty. Yet the racial doctrines are a bigger violation and threat to the Gospel (and thus the “nature of God” and His ideal “Creation”) than people’s personal sex lives, or obedience to an institutional Church or “Christian culture” that is not even biblical. They have long criticized “deciding for ourselves what is sin”, but they had already done just that.

The further truth is that the reason race was seen as unimportant to God was originally because He was seen as being in fact behind it, through the “curse”! But most did not want to admit this anymore, and so brushed off the subject as only something the conniving Left and the discontent blacks themselves (now all lumped together under banners such as “wokeness”) harped on.

What really is “Historic Orthodoxy” anyway?

Their responses to every change in the church and the world, such as, now, the issue of homosexuality, is to appeal to what they call “historic orthodox Christianity“.

This term is usually given by those following what is known as “evangelical Protestantism”. They at this point ignore that the “reformers” they follow, arose in the 16th century, and so were going against 1500 years of [literal] “historical orthodox Christianity”, which was by that time embodied in the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches. (And themselves already divided as such by that time! Some “fundamental Baptist” groups, as well as various other sects will claim to follow an “unbroken succession” of small persecuted groups, usually including the Waldensians, and leading to the Anabaptists, and from there, to whichever group the teacher is representing. This is called the “Trail of Blood” theory or “landmarkist successionism”. While spme of them can justifiably claim some [limited] amount of continuity with the anabaptists, the other groups were totally unconnected (spread out all across Europe, separated by centuries), and believed vastly different things; many being “ascetic” and even “gnostic”, which fundamentalists and the other sects will reject. They generally respond that this is just the “slander” of the large institutional groups against them, but they have no proof otherwise; they just find a small group with a teaching that resembles one of theirs, and which they were persecuted for, and declare the group as their predecessor. The Waldensians, in fact, still exist actually, and even have churches in the US “Piedmont” area of the South. They had joined the Reformation, and are now a Reformed type group, so “Arminian revivalist” independent Baptists, and other “free will” sects such as the sabbatarians, Church of Christ, etc. who claim ties to the Waldensians, are shown to be wrong).

So that should be the ultimate proof that “historical orthodox Christianity” can be wrong, and is not what we are to appeal to; and that includes in readings and interpretations of scripture!
But I had noticed, in many areas, this is the final arbiter in scriptural interpretation. They say their views are “biblical”, but it’s really what “historic Christianity has always taught” a particular scripture means. (Such as apologist Walter Martin’s final statement against Herbert Armstrong’s anti-trinitarian view in Armstrong and the Radio Church of God). This is identical to the Catholics’ “ubiquity, antiquity, unanimity” criteria they use to justify seemingly unbiblical positions as the Papacy or transubstantiation, and thus, the Protestants themselves are in the same position as “the cults”. They uphold doctrines such as the Trinity, Sunday and Hell where they share the “historic” view, and pretend to have total solidarity with “orthodoxy”, against the modern sects, but deviate against that same “historic” orthodoxy in areas where they decide the historic Church went off track. If they can do it, why can’t anyone else? They will appeal to the same “historic” consensus they are going against in some areas!

The term “Christianity” is not even in scripture! It was apparently first coined in 110AD, by Ignatius of Antioch. This leader also frequently pointed his readers to the authority of the “bishop”. Bishop is mentioned over a hundred times in Ignatius’ seven short epistles; but only six times in the entire NT! One of them referring to Jesus, and another, to an OT quote. It was a simple “overseer”, not a power figure, as the later Church made it out to be. But within a few decades of Ignatius, the one in Rome had already become powerful enough to press other parts of the Church on issues of practice (such as the Quartodeciman controversy, where the original biblical Passover date for the Communion [extending from the old “seder”] was suppressed in favor of what later became “Easter” Sunday). A couple more centuries, and it empressed the emperor enough to make it the state religion. This is now when they used their power to call “councils” where they set doctrines and issued official “creeds” (the first seven shared by many Protestants), and in which dissenters were condemned to death. This is the origin of “historic Christianity”!

So the Protestants (and “independent fundamentalists”) reject the system that was arising out of those centuries, yet have claimed their unbiblical title, and even use it to condemn others, just as that previous institution had done!

The only thing uniting “historic orthodox Christianity” is that there was a man named Jesus, who was a “second member” of a “tripartite” Godhead (a doctrine based on scriptural revelation, but greatly overformulated in the 4th century), with a divine birth, death and resurrection, and now has an organized institution of paid, professional leaders who are to stand in front of a congregation and use a modified divine Law to control others’ behavior through fear, with “faith” as a duty to gain “salvation”, and an obligation to prove it through improved behavior. (Some have minimized the latter points, drawing criticism from those maintaining them, in the name of, naturally, “historic Christianity”. A few cross over into a confession of works salvation, usually by redefining “faith” in terms of works).

—Oh, and of course, that homosexuality is abhorrent to God. Hundreds of evangelical leaders actually spent the time around the 500th anniversary of the Reformation by gathering together to issue a Statement on homosexuality! The rationale was that the very “heart of the Gospel” was at stake. (As we can see based on the above quoted statement). The original Reformation was over the issue of justification and redemption (salvation), which is naturally a foundational issue to the Gospel. People’s private sexual behavior has been elevated to the same thing, with the secular world, and perhaps “gay” Christians they deny as truly Christian, apparently holding the place of the Church institution “persecuting” the faithful, and that need to be “reformed” by God’s leaders! (This is how they generally portray the secular society, as if it were a wayward part of the Church, under their rightful authority).

But again, if “historic Christianity” could have gone so wrong on the doctrine of salvation (pre-Reformation), why do they think it can’t be wrong on this issue (or the whole notion of ongoing “duty faith” altogether, which is what maintains that the Law and its condemnation continues into the foreseeable future; hence the condemnations of people for their behavior!)

So LGBT advocates and others (female pastors, etc.), should not try to infiltrate or change the Church to make it “accept” everything. It only “proves” their conspiracy narratives of being “persecuted” by some evil, subversive “agenda”. Let them have their “historic” institutions, and little power bases. The institutions are not biblical, but rather secular (i.e. legally chartered) business corporations framed around select religious beliefs (many of which are not even always biblical). They’re not what you should be seeking! We can even appeal to Rev.18:4; being the postapostolic Church did follow lock, stock and barrel the errors of the Old Covenant system that was over the NT Church and before. (So with a Preterist soteriology, we can still have a bit of an “Idealist” view, and say the “endtime” scenario does essentially repeat throughout history in minuscule ways).
Coming up with more biblical responses is the better way to handle them and prevent them from having the power to discriminate.


So many people come to us claiming many things and commanding our response. Why should we listen to this one group, using God, Christ and the Bible? Anyone can claim those authorities.
They believe, essentially that God needs to control man’s behavior, and He’s called them to lead this for Him. Why should anyone listen to them, and not anyone else trying to control people?

Conservative Christians will then deflect any pointing out of “sin” among their own ranks, and then appeal to “grace”; that they are saved by their “faith” (which in practice is a set of correct beliefs).
But it needs to be pointed out that they are the ones who start off playing the devil’s game of accusation and works-righteousness, and so should accept being held up to the same standards they have preached to others.

This is actually what the first two chapters of the book of Romans was addressing!

LGBT defenders need to recognize and point this out more.
To properly answer them, you must point out the true context of such passages; that what is so abhorrent was those who come in the name of divine Law, preaching it to others, and yet do the same things themselves. (Rom.2:1, 3)

This then should be held up as legitimately calling into question their statements about the work of the Spirit.
They apparently are not understanding it correctly. They are turning it into yet another burden placed on others, that neither they nor anyone else were ever able (or willing) to bear. (Matt.23:4, Acts 15:10).

This is what we need to bring to the table in the debate with Christian conservatives!

We need to start all over again, in reading scripture, (The IFCA church I was in had a little chorus “Take a new look from the Old Book”, which in that movement is never actually put into practice), and not filter it through “historic orthodoxy”. By their own profession, it has been wrong before, and why should we believe them, and not, perhaps the original “historical” institutions (which similarly have proof-texts for all of their doctrines and practices; appealing to “apostolic oral tradition”, if all else fails, and they even have proof-texts for that concept!)

  1. Ben Masters permalink

    “But it needs to be pointed out that they are the ones who start off playing the devil’s game of accusation and works-righteousness, and so should accept being held up to the same standards they have preached to others.”

    And nowhere is this more evident, IMO, than when it comes to entertainment– some of these preachers loudly complain about how sexual and otherwise objectionable much of today’s entertainment (both film and television) is, and so we must avoid it.

    But that’s not all– some of them seem to think that we should not only avoid what’s on now, but also avoid every single thing that has ever been made in those areas (especially television), whether it’s classic or modern, B/W or color, sex or not, violence or not; even if it hardly has anything objectionable and is one of the cleanest shows that has ever been made, it is still immorality and sin just because it’s from Hollywood.

    The worst thing is, they use the very same medium they preach against, to preach against it– what they do not realize is that we are watching television like they tell us not to do when we are watching them preach against television, and so, also IMO, if they’re as much against it like they say they are, they need to drop their television “ministries” and just stick to radio and books and CDs and other formats.

    • Hi;
      Their philosophy is generally, “use the Devil’s mediums/[weapons, etc.] against him”. Like Jack Chick got his whole idea of comic book tracts from Communist propaganda (which seems a bit ironic given how conservative they are.
      I take it, it’s more “fundamentalist“ types like that you are referring to, as most modern evangelicals aren’t that restrictive. They do set certain boundaries you still can’t cross, such as music style for movements like Chick’s).

      The issue, a always, is one of control, and they have no control over secular media, but do have control over their own uses of media, and have recognized its effectiveness in spreading a message. So in that way, they are more like their opponents than they think!

      • Ben Masters permalink

        “I take it, it’s more “fundamentalist“ types like that you are referring to, as most modern evangelicals aren’t that restrictive.”

        That is correct– I was painting with too broad a brush; when I was at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Alabama with my sister and brother-in-law, they just focused on how we are to let Him lead, guide and direct us in those areas, for one thing, and in general, how we are to love Him and love people, IIRC (they didn’t even talk about the end times and last days and tribulation and Rapture).

        Better yet, they weren’t even picky about Bible versions; I went in with a NASB, fully expecting them to inveigh about how the only true Bible is King James, but to my pleasant surprise, they said absolutely nothing about it (refreshing for a Baptist church, and why I wanted to go back for a second time); I also went to a Methodist church with them when they lived in the town of Grant, and a nondenominational one in Mobile where they currently live (the town of Daphne, to be exact).

        All that said, this is why I said “some” have said such things as I said in my first comment (I didn’t say all, because, as you said, not all evangelicals are that restrictive and hardline).

      • I just looked them up, and if that is the one in New Market, it’s part of the “Cooperative Baptist Fellowhip”, and is described as coming from “a group of moderate churches of the Southern Baptist Convention”, and even classified as “Mainline Protestant”. It looks very moderate, even from the website. So yes, they are not going to be focusing on translations and last days. (And I’m sure they’re not “traditional hymns only”, as well). Churches that focus on these things and on “preaching on sin and Hell” all the time (or some Reformed types who are also big on soteriology and other doctrine) will see them as a “case in point” in the “slide” from “historic orthodoxy”. (As I’ve said, many that I have been discussing already see the SBC as sliding!)

        The “Baptist” label is very diverse now, and many have moved from the old “fundamentalist” stance, and some moving faster than others (like the SBC is moving, but more slowly), while IFB’ are the ones holding all their old ground (and again, some Reformed as well. SBC seems to be a battleground between those trying to hold on vs. those trying to modernize, and some from either side will give up, and separate into a modern fellowship, or just become “independent fundamantalist”).

        I have to be careful how I frame things too, as I was recently in a debate with someone who thought I was knocking all Christians (or “Christianity”; though I point out that term is not even in the Bible). I’m criticizing the people who have risen up the loudest under these banners, and seeking to cast out others based on a “historic position”, when the history itself was full of gross error they have basically brushed off!

  2. Ben Masters permalink

    “I just looked them up, and if that is the one in New Market, it’s part of the “Cooperative Baptist Fellowhip”, and is described as coming from “a group of moderate churches of the Southern Baptist Convention”, and even classified as “Mainline Protestant”.”

    You are absolutely right about its location– I remember that Huntsville suburb.

  3. “Propitiation” is supposed to be one of the “fundamentals”, where God is angry at man because of his sin, and accepts Christ’s death as the only “payment” that would satisfy what is basically, an infinite anger [Christ being God, too]. This raises questions of “why God would pay Himself to save us by having Himself killed” (or some other phrasing of it). The whole Law is seen as being based on this, with the emphases on sexual purity truly being from our natural form being “dirty”.

    I always took this for granted, but it seems much of the Law (which is what necessitated the concept of “propitiation”) was based on man’s hangups, being man is the one who fell, and the main effect of this was shame. (It was man who hid from God in the garden, nto God who his, as would be consistent with the Church’s interpretation of “God cannot look upon sin”).
    So then propitiation, as well, was basically a concept man needed to allay his guilt and shame.

    Historic Christianity has not come up with a good explanation of why menstruation and even leprosy were “unclean” under the Law. This is what left the world to assume the entire Law was just “ancient man’s [unscientific] fears and hangups”. Man’s response to them actually were those things, and the Gospel offered the solution to it. But instead, the Church just plugged it into their dualistic views of nature.
    This is the basis of saying the need for “propitiation” was in man’s mind. They will reject this, as “liberal” or whatever, but for one thing, propitiation never fully occurs in their view, as the vast majority of man ends up still “paying” for their sins, forever. So then God’s “wrath” is NEVER satisfied (for ‘eternity’ means ‘never’. Even though Rev.15 does say this “cup“ will be “filled up”, and in a very finite time!)
    Augustine’s soteriology seemed to be what harmonized and explained all of these points regarding “God’s sovereignty” and man’s sin and shame, but it did so in a way that left no Good News.

    The “man’s view” of propitiation is illustrated by the fact that God “wrote the lesson” of the Gospel through the Law. God wasn’t “trying” an approach of “fixing“ man through the Law, which failed, so then God then had to come up with Christ as the “better” solution. The Law was given to address man’s natural reaction to his sin (shame and the attempt to make up for it through his own efforts). That was why the Law forbid what was “odd”.

    Edit, this article aso questions some of these notions:
    If Jesus Didn’t Die For Our Sins, What Did He Die For?
    It’s not as clear cut as you think
    View at

    (Note: I wouldn’t say He didn’t die FOR our sins, and that it was “just” an “example. Since the primary result of the Fall was shame (where man hid from God and tried to fix things by his own efforts, such as making the fig leaves, and then all the religions leaving ritual sacrifices), then Christ paid this “ransom” and “penalty” that existed in man’s mind. (Which would key into the “example” view. Views 2, “Jesus died to pay off God” from the 11th Century Anselm of Canterbury and 3: “Jesus died to take our punishment”, i.e the “Penal Substitutionary Theory of Atonement,” (Calvin) are based on a fixation with behavior, reflecting the later Church’s agenda of control of people’s lives. Modern evangelicalism is now an amalgam of these views, which as we see, developed separately over centuries. They ultimately betray the Gospel of Grace, in favor of works, but simply try to credit God with producing the works, to avoid the charge of human effort, though it never works as they say, and it ends up as effort, by fear. This is one of the things that has driven people away).

    Other problems with “historic” teaching

    They also have not come up with a decent explanation of why special revelation ceased. They say “God wants faith”, but He always wanted faith. They say because we have scripture, but no one can even agree on what it teaches.

    They teach we “know the truth” by “conscience”, but when opposing doctrines such as Hell and reprobation, then counter that our sense of justice is corrupted

    We cannot “prove” we tried our best (to others, or even ourselves, given our lack of total objectivity), so salvation tied to “choices” would only be viable when special revelation was present.

    Christians speak of “justice” and God’s “offended Holiness”, but don’t seem to think He would care about many of the slights people suffer. Particularly when they take the “rugged individualist” stance and speak of people needing “thicker skins“. It seems He only cares about attacks against “Christianity” and “Christian

    The Church comes at the world from this premise of “we’re at war with you“, but then [the more moderate modern Church, at least] expects them to open up to us, and then fail to see the mixed message of all the “love” and entertainment more contemporary Christians try to sugarcoat the original ‘war’ premise with.

    “Good news” is not “your behavior needs to change, OR ELSE”, and it’s very difficult and most don’t want to do it”!

    Christ describes “the end”
    “Some of YOU STANDING HERE shall not taste death until you see [this]”
    [Josephus reports “image” of Christ in clouds during the final War]
    In these final “bowl” judgments is “the cup of God’s wrath FILLED” (COMPLETE)
    (If all the judgment were about an ‘eternal’ afterlife, then the cup of wrath would NEVER be ‘filled’!)
    This was the “Gehenna” promised, as Jerusalem and the Temple were destroyed by fire, and along with them, any hope of being ‘saved’ by that system.
    Special revelation ceased
    (1 Cor. 13:8 does not teach “what is perfect” to come is the completion of a written canon. –which itself is a partial admission of a past fulfillment. All the other scriptures mentioning “the perfect“ are what they claim are the future return of Christ! How is only this one something else, that is already long past?)

    People are playing with others’ consciences through threats based on presupposition and tradition (when very little is clear or not verified)

    Church wrongly made itself the prosecutors and judges (and in the past, the executioners) of the world. (Much moreso than ‘loving’ “beggars showing other beggars where to find food”)

    The need for clarity is why those who talk the toughest game (with devices of faux certainty such as “presuppositionalism”) have an admired quality. But when they mix their own agendas in, which skew whatever truth they may have, then it just becomes manipulative

    Church puts down pleasure focus, but the whole notion of the Fall assumes an ideal original creation of pleasantness.

  4. “The ‘worst’ sin”

    “Judge not, lest ye be judged”
    Moses gave you the Law; none of you keeps the Law.
    Matt.23 “Bind heavy burdens and would not lift them wlth their fingers”
    whited sepulchres, making clean the outside of the cup
    parable of the unjust steward
    parable of the vineyard workers (another form of judging)
    Acts “placed a yoke of burden neither we nor our fathers could bear”
    Romans 1, 2
    Heb.10:25 seeing true grace as “cheap”

    Man’s including “traditional Christianity’s” view:
    as long as you’re “trying” (as opposed to “practicing” sin), you’ve truly “repented” (fosters excusing and covering up of impulsive sins)

    In the “resurrection”, conservatives will see that their doctrine and actions were shaped by survival instinct just as much as everyone else (actually proving the
    doctrine of sin they preached so fervently), and that they caused untold pain (including to their own children, etc.) with their fear message and control tactics.

    They have forgotten the message of the Pharisee and the Publican, focusing on the ACT of “asking for forgiveness”, which they have added so much baggage to, to the point that one thinks he can truly be thankful he is not still as this “sinner” over there, and the only difference is crediting God for your “life change”.

  5. Bible Banned in Schools as Book Censorship Backfires Big Time
    How Christian parents ignited a book-banning revolution, only to face the fallout
    View at

    (Immediately brings to mind a Twitter page “Conservative Self-owns”!
    Great points, though these ideals of what’s wrong and what should be done instead (inclusiveness, diversity, etc.) they will justify their position (including the whole “war” premise), with the notion that the Gospel is supposed to be an “offense”. What they ignore (and really need to be informed of), is that this “offense” mentioned in scripture was of people very similar to themselves, trying to hold on to rules and old way (thus dismissing Grace)!.

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