Religion as Extortion Racket

I don’t usually write about religion in isolation. The few times it has appeared in my articles there has been some political angle. Tonight will be an exception. It will also be personal and not the least bit academic. Recently in the comments section of my blog there was a lengthy discussion of religion and it, in part prompted the following musings.

We need to begin at the beginning. The year is 1992. Soon after the election of Bill Clinton and shortly before her 72nd birthday, my grandmother succumbed to cancer. What followed was absurd and the resulting pain perhaps well deserved. My grandmother was not religious, not remotely. In fact, after my grandfather lost his right arm in a factory accident and the dust had settled, my mom asked my grandmother if she prayed in the immediate aftermath of the incident. My grandmother responded, “of course not. Who was there to pray to?” That was the mark of  true non-believer, someone who when the chips were really down, still did not believe in a higher spirit. So it was absurd that my grandmother should receive a religious service and burial. Most of us who have lost a loved one know that the funeral arrangements are as much for the living, if not more so, than for the deceased. And so it was the wish of my grandfather and my grandmother’s sisters that she should receive a religious service.

Since my grandmother did not attend church, the pastor at the service did not know her from Eve. His ignorance of how she lead her life was obvious from the moment he opened his mouth. Had he known her, he would have known she was the finest, most decent woman imaginable. Only my mother and my wife could match her. My sister and I use her as a yardstick for how far we have come and how far we have yet to go. Yet at the height of his eulogy, when emotions in the room were most raw, he declared “let us all pray that God will accept this woman into His kingdom even though she did not accept Christ as her savior. Perhaps though her soul is in peril, God in his infinite wisdom and compassion will have mercy on her.”  Soul in peril, indeed. From a moral and ethical standpoint, my grandmother could have wiped the floor of that funeral home with everyone assembled including the minister. I was enraged. You see, even though I was not religious at the time, I at least gave religion some credit for its healing powers. I believed that ministers, doctors of the soul so to speak, abided by the same creed as real doctors — “first, do no harm.” On that late-November day in 1992, that minister did harm. He wounded the hearts of at least some of the bereaved.

Fast forward to April of 2010. It is almost 18 years later and my grandfather, on the verge of turning 90 had lived his allotted time. It was now time to bury him. This funeral would be the exact mirror image of the one I attended 18 years ago. You see, late in life, my grandfather “found Jesus Christ”. The minister knew my grandfather’s second wife very well and knew granddad at least well enough to talk credibly about him. However his most important message was clear. “All those who have found Christ, will see this man again one day. But understand, if you have not found the Lord yet, do not delay because no man knows when his time will come.” Ah, I see. So the only way I will ever get to see my grandfather again, is to accept Christ as my savior. This sermon echoed the same sentiment as the one almost two decades earlier. Comfort could only be found in Christ. Non-believers would suffer, not only in the next world, but even in this one because if you do not believe, then you can only despair of ever seeing your loved one again in the afterlife. The proceeding started to resemble a multi-level marketing meeting as various people rose to eulogize my grandfather, but more importantly to declare their belief in Christ and how THEY were going to see granddad again someday.  It was a club you see. We were not here to talk about the life of a man. We were here to celebrate our membership in the club and how only members would reap the benefits of membership.

As I sat there I saw religion, at least in this instance, exposed as an extortion racket. Either believe, or your soul will be at risk. So will your well-being, your ability to deal with your own death and the death of your loved ones. You can have peace of mind but there is  a price to be paid. Only through Christ will any comfort come. The content of your character is irrelevant. As long as you pay up at the faith counter, all will be good. And when do the proponents of this racket choose to pry their trade? When loved ones are most vulnerable and in the most pain. That is what I found so shameful and unforgivable. What should have been celebrations of the lives of my grandparents were little more than sales pitches for a product.

With all this said, I still know that religion does bring many people comfort. I do know that right-minded churches work hard for their communities and donate time and money to those less fortunate. It’s that very knowledge that leaves me irreconcilably confused. How could people practicing a belief system of love, turn it into some membership scheme and extort non-members using their peace of mind as leverage?

I am not religious. But I do not go around denying the existence of God. I am not smart enough to disprove the existence of God. I don’t let His existence or lack thereof dictate the course of my life. I do know this much. A loving God honored my beautiful grandmother and demanded nothing in return and he forgave my imperfect grandfather. And if there is a heaven somewhere, both of my grandparents arrived there.

And my grandmother is kicking my grandfather’s ass, as we speak.

Respectfully,
Rutherford

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139 thoughts on “Religion as Extortion Racket

  1. R,

    An extortion racket?

    Have you ever read the bible or studied any of the monotheistic religions? That whole faith, afterlife thing is kind of important and is rather pervasive through and through.

    Club? A rather jaded way of looking at it, and kind of ignorant of the points he was making based on the tenents of the faith.

    Oh by the way, the bible more or less says that even if you are the best person in the world, if you don’t accept Christ, then you don’t get into heaven. I’m not saying anything either way, other than that is an important element to the eternal life premise of the faith.

    Besides, really, if you want to talk about faith, was this really the best way to go about it? Two anecdodal incidents- seperated by nearly two decades- where you were emotionally distrought?

  2. I expect I’m walking into a world of pain by commenting – but, Rutherford,

    a) first, I’m so sorry for your losses. And for the losses of our world of these two wonderful people.

    b) I’m definitely faithful – but of a different faith – and my faith is no less fraught with madness and strange rules and edicts, most of which I have flaunted. This is how I get clear of the challenge you identify…

    There are times when people are talking to themselves – and not to you. Exit interviews for jobs are all about the interviewer, not the exiter. breakups. basically, partings of ways, but also plenty of other conversations. Usually one person finds it is a good time to validate their faith in the institution they are still a part of. We usually help them, when we’re in the other chair. It’s not you, it’s me. This was a great company, but I want to be a farmer.

    A funeral is basically the same thing. We’d like to think the preacher can get past himself to have a conversation that is soothing and sympathetic to his congregation. But these gentlemen did not – perhaps because their own faith was challenged that day. Perhaps because they are always too self-centered. “Men of God” are, first and foremost, just men.

    So, he said what he had to say to make it okay for him to continue in his path in life without questioning it, in both cases. His faith asks him to give up a lot (a banker’s salary, monthly trips to vegas, bacon, etc.) and he needed to justify that the departure of these people did not make his sacrifice for naught.

    In a sense, it is a compliment. I bet, in their shoes, I would have a pretty easy time performing a routine eulogy over time. But, I bet performing a funeral for an amazing atheist with a crowd of loving mourners watching would be seriously challenging to my core.

    God may be.. well.. God. But religion is, at a minimum, run by man. And you can’t expect more from these organizations than you go the government or your favorite large enterprise.

  3. Huck,

    You would be wrong – I find this entire story tragic, for it wasn’t today until I knew how hardened and cynical Rutherford was. Just how confused he is about what Christ really represents.

    Nonetheless, I am grateful for Rutherford’s honesty. If more on the Left were like Rutherford, perhaps I could come to respect the other side more, or at least listen. At least Rutherford speaks from the heart.

    Rutherford has been surrounded his entire life by unbelievers and the sad fact is, that he probably never stood a chance. Perhaps that is why I should be eternally grateful for my own mother. Without her, I may have been just like Rutherford.

  4. Huck,

    I will say this. We have all been to these types of funerals. They’re both tedious and trivial. They either quickly become a bore, or so uncomfortable and so pretentious, you squirm in your seat waiting for them to end, secretly praying to no one in particular that the family simply makes it through without further anguish.

    In this one I sympathize with both Rutherford, and the preacher that Rutherford condemns at his grandmother’s funeral. The preacher may be tone deaf and have an apparent lack of timing with about half his audience, but how can you not sympathize with a man that is asked to

    (1) Talk about somebody he knows nothing about besides what is written in an eulogy?

    (2) Provide comfort to the unbelievers while comforting the believers? What could he possibly say uplifting to all in attendance, and would it be better to say “dust to dust” and that’s it? What? That she was a great woman? Are there any of us who can truthfully say that we didn’t think at least somebody in our family at one time or another deserving of sainthood?

    Personally, I think it a good idea for each of us, while there is still time, to put in writing exactly what we want our funeral to be. And if it is apparent that the deceased is an unbeliever, quit pretending as such.

    I recently attended a grave site service like this and nothing was spoken of God, but there was a moment of silence that served no purpose. Afterward, we gathered at the house for the afternoon and shot the bull. I am sure the spouse had a few hours of reprieve.

    But we all know what happened later when the house grew silent.

  5. Arizona checking citizenship status is misguided/racist/Nazi/etc. Obama checking citizenship status…not so much.

    Seniors are being asked to provide their birthdates, Social Security numbers and citizen status to the Secret Service so background checks could be performed. Such a check is required for anyone who gets within an arm’s length of the president, students were told at their senior breakfast Friday

    Meanwhile, a 3rd Obama administration official that has been publically critical of Arizon’a’s law has admitted that he has not actually read the 16-page bill.

  6. I wonder if any of the Arizona-haters here can shed some light on why the Secret Service feels the need to check the citizenship of people getting near the POTUS.

    It’s almost as if they are suggesting that non-citizens pose a security threat.

    Oh wait, that is what they are saying.

    Not to mention that the SS is making your worst nightmares come true—they are asking American citizens to prove their citizenship.

    So it’s time for you folks to decide who is the hypocrite—this administration—or you.

  7. Rutherford – “inherently evil” Graychin here….

    I have been to funerals like that too – but never for a person to whom I was particularly close, as you were. I even saw an altar call at a funeral! Unfortunately, “tone deaf” preachers like that are not particularly rare here in Oklahoma.

    Since the preacher didn’t know your grandmother, perhaps he might have spent a few minutes with you and other members of your family learning about her life, hearing some stories about her, instead of pulling pseudo-religious nonsense out of his rear.

    “Either believe, or your soul will be at risk. So will your well-being, your ability to deal with your own death and the death of your loved ones. You can have peace of mind but there is a price to be paid. Only through Christ will any comfort come. The content of your character is irrelevant.”

    You summed up that particular flavor of so-called Christianity very well – believe, or else. But the problem (ONE problem) is that a person can’t really choose what to believe. I don’t believe what I choose – I believe what I must. Apparently, so do you.

    If someone told me that I had to believe in the Great Pumpkin in order to be saved, I might be able to answer an altar call and SAY I believed it. But I really wouldn’t believe. How many so-called Christians populate Christian churches and are doing their best, trying to believe, but really don’t deep down? There is no way to know, but my bet is that it’s a lot. Many professing Christians need a Fox Mulder poster on their office wall – “I WANT to believe.” Maybe by hanging out with men and women of absolute certainty, like the congregation of that preacher, that faith will rub off. Maybe.

    All through the history of Christian Europe, people have been persecuted for their beliefs – or non-beliefs. Bloody wars have been fought over religious faith. There is something about Christianity that makes it far less tolerant of diverse beliefs than almost any other faith – with the possible exception of a few modern Islamists. I seriously doubt that your grandmother’s funeral was the first time that particular preacher separated the fine believers in his pews from the unsaved rabble in the streets. It was probably what he learned in the seminary, and no doubt his flock attended that church because it was exactly the message they wanted to hear.

    “Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried.” – G.K. Chesterton

  8. Simple question…

    Do we really want a United States senator who fucks up his words so badly that when he tries to say he served “during” the Vietnam War it comes out as serving “in” the Vietnam War?

  9. Yet at the height of his eulogy, when emotions in the room were most raw, he declared “let us all pray that God will accept this woman into His kingdom even though she did not accept Christ as her savior. Perhaps though her soul is in peril, God in his infinite wisdom and compassion will have mercy on her.”

    I’d like to share your outrage at a pastor saying something that is consistent with the Gospel he preaches, but I have not been a captive to Obamapolitics long enough to get angry with consistency, rather than lies. It is one thing to recognize the absurdity of religious survivors insisting on religious observances for the irreligious dead, but it is quite another to expect such people to say something inconsistent with what they believe is true. My clergy relatives did this at my father’s funeral, and I still reflect on their waxing poetic of his being in a Heaven that he himself never subscribed to.

    I am not religious. But I do not go around denying the existence of God. I am not smart enough to disprove the existence of God. I don’t let His existence or lack thereof dictate the course of my life. I do know this much. A loving God honored my beautiful grandmother and demanded nothing in return and he forgave my imperfect grandfather. And if there is a heaven somewhere, both of my grandparents arrived there.

    Rutherford, love is never blind.
    You’re a parent; surely you know better than to believe that love is all kittens and sunshine with nothing expected of the recipient.
    I love my sons. I will always love my sons. Because I love my sons, I have rules that I expect to be obeyed, much in the same way I expect to be obeyed when I command them to do something. Part of the process is to teach them to make good choices, so they can avoid the unpleaseant consequences of bad choices. “Don’t touch the stove” prevent burned fingers. “Don’t drink at a party and then drive home” prevents the unfortunate consequence of death or maiming, of yourself or others. And when their experience with my rules is complete, then it is up to them. I don’t love them less if they drink and slide into a family of six, no matter how long the jail sentance is, but I can’t change that consequence for them either.

    Your statement baffles me. You don’t partake of the training, yet you “know” enough to make an ultimate conclusion. If we were discussing any other topic, I imagine that you would be able to recognize the folly of such a statement straightaway, and would likely avoid saying something so silly.

    You don’t like what you perceive it to be, and don’t want any part of it for that reason. I get it. But you’ll forgive me if, having spent time studying at least one religion, I reject your certainty in favor of what scripture says.

  10. “Your statement baffles me. You don’t partake of the training, yet you “know” enough to make an ultimate conclusion. If we were discussing any other topic, I imagine that you would be able to recognize the folly of such a statement straightaway, and would likely avoid saying something so silly.”

    Since he has an opinion on the AZ bill I suspect he has not read, I think you are giving him a bit too much credit.

  11. Do we really want a United States senator who fucks up his words so badly that when he tries to say he served “during” the Vietnam War it comes out as serving “in” the Vietnam War?

    Probably not. People like that can be a disaster.

    For example, we once had a U.S. President who once claimed to have “served in the U.S. Air Force,” that he’d “been to war,” and that he had “firsthand” experience with the consequences of combat. But none of that was true.

    And he was definitely a disaster.

    But he was also a Republican, so we can’t possibly use the same standards to judge him as we use for the clown in Connecticut.

  12. For example, we once had a U.S. President who once claimed to have “served in the U.S. Air Force,” that he’d “been to war,” and that he had “firsthand” experience with the consequences of combat. But none of that was true.

    Who knew we had Dan Rather amongst us? Unfortunately, Dan lost his job over lying – and unfortunately, we don’t have those same repercussions here.

    I do remember a disaster and serial rapist for President who loathed the military some years back.

  13. “Either believe, or your soul will be at risk. So will your well-being, your ability to deal with your own death and the death of your loved ones. You can have peace of mind but there is a price to be paid. Only through Christ will any comfort come. The content of your character is irrelevant.”

    I wasn’t going to say much because I like Rutherford and it pains me to a degree that his loss pains him. I’m not without compassion and understand his loss as I have lost all of my grandparents, all of whom I would have considered of good character.

    But since the inherent and uninformed evil fraud and post modern Christian basher has entered the fray, I am afraid I must make a few corrections.

    First, to the best of my knowledge Christ makes no promises about some supposed comfort upon death. There’s a promise of hope for things to come. Please note that Christ does make that promise upon his return where there will be no more death, no more tears (see Revelation 21:4-5 if interested) – but during the age of grace? Not that I’m aware. Christians and unbelievers alike share in the grief of a loss.

    I am continually amazed that people who believe they understand the Bible, and in fact tell me they have read it many times, think “character” has something to do with salvation, as if you can work your way into heaven by being “good.” We all have differing opinions about character and goodness. For instance, I might think Rutherford has some good qualities and good character though an unbeliever, but I believe Graychin has incredibly poor character and an excellent representative of real evil.

    Again, you unbelievers ask your questions incorrectly. You place yourself and your opinions as sovereign to an Almighty God discounting exactly what it is that He said. Good works are but filthy rags to the Lord, as you can not be good enough to make it to heaven (if you are to believe what Christ said).

    While obedience follows Christ’s commands to love thy neighbor as thy love thyself, that alone does not get you into heaven either. You have missed the most important component.

    Salvation is a gift that can either be accepted or rejected. It is free to all that ask and believe. It is the only means of salvation and the new birth. Rejection will bring the second death.

    But bringing comfort and an easy life with no worries if you believe in Jesus after suffering a personal loss? Nah, I have found just the opposite. Faith is no magic bullet or substitute for an imperfect world, and was never intended to be. Paul spoke of finishing the course and keeping the faith.

    If there is a problem with that message and you disagree, your argument is not with me. You will need to take your complaint to the One who said it. Me? I’m only the little messenger boy.

  14. I’ll comment at greater length later but first:

    1) Lily, thanks for the business analogy. Based on our backgrounds you knew that would hit home with me.

    2) I want to sincerely thank Tex for a thoughtful response. But for the eye-grabbing headline, I wanted to convey my feelings in this article in a serious but not ranting sort of way. Whether or not I achieved that, most of the responses I got were insightful.

    I’ll comment on specifics later. Dinner time now. 🙂

  15. I am continually amazed that people who believe they understand the Bible, and in fact tell me they have read it many times, think “character” has something to do with salvation, as if you can work your way into heaven by being “good.”

    In my view, understanding the Bible is not necessarily the same as believing that every word in it must be taken literally. Or even that SOME of it MUST be taken literally, so long as Tex is around to tell us which parts to believe and which parts to discount.

    So people who believe that “character” ought to matter to a just God in deciding who he sends to hell are only following their own sense of justice, whether that sense of justice is a Platonic ideal or a culturally influenced characteristic.

    I think it is entirely unjust that God would decide to reward and punish people based on what they believed, in all honesty and good conscience, and not on whether they beat their wives or were warmongers or serial killers or good parents. Many people agree with that viewpoint, including perhaps a majority who call themselves Christians.

    But I’m “inherently evil,” so what could I know?

  16. (Having read none of the comments … sorry if I’m retreading, here.)

    I suspect that this is going to be one of those conversations in which the believer and non-believer don’t speak the same language.

    Yes, there are people who get involved with religion for “fire insurance,” as it’s often put.

    There are other people who have a real relationship with God.

    Sometimes, members of the first group do become part of the second.

    But I give very little thought to hell. It isn’t a consideration for my (after) life at this point. Rather, I focus on love.

    Yes, part of that love was shown by saving me from ever having to think about hell … but there’s more than that. I know God.

    To those who don’t, I realize, this sounds similar to the stuff that gets people locked up in asylums. I’ve come to terms with that.

    But I don’t go to church every week out of fear. I don’t serve on my worship team out of fear. I don’t read my Bible out of fear. I do it all out of love — for God, for the body of believers in my church, and for others whose paths I cross.

  17. But I’m “inherently evil,” so what could I know?

    Yes, you are inherently evil and woefully misled – the epitome of neo paganist and modern day Pharisee – that who Isaiah called woe be to those…the answer to your question – an obvious “not much.”

    I need not interpret scripture for you Bible scholar Jack Black Jr. as you feel yourself imminently qualified to take sovereignty over God and tell us minions which parts we should believe and which parts we can discard, including that which Christ taught. I’m just wondering when you’re going to take the Jews to task for their ignorance as well, or does that interfere with the vote?

    Here’s the truth Jack Jr. and it’s the honest truth. Of those many scoffers I’ve debated with over the years, you’re not even a particularly good one. So my suggestion is if you are going to mock and criticize, at least get wise enough to be effective. 😉

  18. “I think it is entirely unjust that God would decide to reward and punish people based on what they believed,”

    Yeah, but … here’s the thing …

    We have all earned punishment. While I’ve never commanded the extermination of the Jews or lynched people for their skin color or beaten my wife … I’ve sinned. I’ve earned condemnation, if the standard is perfection.

    However, by grace I’ve been given the gift of being considered perfect when I come up to that judgment. Yes, I’ve earned condemnation. But I can be rewarded differently.

    If Hitler repented at the moment of his death, he might well be forgiven, too. It’s not my place to judge who is or isn’t going to be given the same gift that I am.

    I didn’t earn it, either.

    That does take a stab at any pretense of vanity or self-righteousness. Since salvation is always and absolutely undeserved, there’s nothing for me to brag about in myself.

  19. But I give very little thought to hell. It isn’t a consideration for my (after) life at this point. Rather, I focus on love.

    While it is true Christ told us to focus on love, Christ also talked far more of hell than heaven. The apostles may have been meek – but they were not cowards about the defense of the faith or the message. Each except John was killed for the extending the message, and thousands of 1st and 2nd century Christians met the same fate. Yet even for the greatest of apostles, there came a time to shake the dust from their feet. Not to get all “fire and brimstone”, but that is the “gospel” truth and it needs to be repeated often.

    Your Mom can’t save you; neither can your Grandma. Buddha, Confucius, Allah, all mortal and all dead. Character doesn’t save you and neither does goodness. When Christ told us we must be born again, He meant an entire transformation ruling out the how “did Jack put it?” the wife beaters, or warmongers, or serial killers. Yet even a thief on the cross gained salvation through belief.

    True Love first requires real Truth. And the truth of the matter is Christ most definitely taught that He alone is the only way. That makes many in the world very uncomfortable. But those are Christ words, not mine.

    Graychin, you want to mock me for believing it all God’s Word, so be it. Won’t change me in the least, nor am I the least bit embarrassed to admit as much. If that makes me weak or stupid in your book, I don’t care. Really I don’t.

    Time will tell which one of is right. Believe as you must…

  20. Graychin, ** PUKE **

    You mock anything and everything that does jibe with your opinions, including God’s Word. Have no fear, though. The only chip I have on my shoulder is the one worn from carrying a sack of rocks called Graychin.

    But right now, I don’t care. I’m going to brag.

    My oldest daughter just got her MCAT scores and had the highest score I’ve ever heard of – she absolutely shredded her dumb old daddy’s score, and anybody else in my own medical school too – rated in the 97 percentile. Too cool!!!

    YEAH!!! I was more nervous for her than I was when I received my own set of scores.

    Life is good, and even you can’t ruin it! 😛

  21. “Since salvation is always and absolutely undeserved….”

    I don’t believe that either. It requires belief in “Original Sin” – the idea that we are all worthless roaches because someone ate an apple – which God knew very well that they would eat when he told them not to.

    My sweet grankids are going to hell if they die in their youth because of that apple? Sorry, it makes no sense. But it’s the traditional interpretation of the Garden of Eden story, which some believe to be literally true. I believe that it’s allegory.

    But we’ll have to check with Tex to find out the Truth.

  22. But it’s the traditional interpretation of the Garden of Eden story, which some believe to be literally true. I believe that it’s allegory.

    Spoken from one Oklahoma’s finest inbred born and bred, I’ll bet. This man waffles between comical and tragic when I read of this man’s inane nature. Clueless..

    Here Graychin, set this to memory since you asked. But, but, but, it’s from the Old Testament you don’t believe, so I wouldn’t count on it if I were you. As it sits right now, they (the grand kids) won’t be seeing you for long and your own kids will be grateful.

    I have no idea the magic age because their isn’t one – apparently God in His wisdom discerns for each of us the appropriate time of accountability.

    Isaiah 7:16
    But before the boy knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, the land of the two kings you dread will be laid waste.

    That’s called an age of accountability – it’s a shame I have to teach you these things now, because you will have failed your grand kids as you apparently failed in most things. If I were you, I’d get to studying, because you’re way behind and a horrid example. 😉

  23. “There is something about Christianity that makes it far less tolerant of diverse beliefs than almost any other faith”-Greychin

    That is the most historically inaccurate thing I ever read in my life.

  24. “There is something about Christianity that makes it far less tolerant of diverse beliefs than almost any other faith”-Greychin

    Rabbit, do you have any idea of how to even begin to address such idiocy? The man is a complete pagan, mocks Christianity daily, and lives in a country where three out of four people call themselves Christian? Does Graychin appear in any danger to you?

    I guarantee Graychin has confused the word tolerance. My Lawd, Jack Black’s grand dad by his own example of mocking the Christian faith openly, proves Christians are some of the most tolerant people on earth.

    I’ll bet you a buck Rabbit that Graychin is that old curmudgeon that all the neighbors avoid like the plague – some grizzled, old hate monger who screams when somebody walks through his yard. 😆

  25. “There is something about Christianity that makes it far less tolerant of diverse beliefs than almost any other faith”-Greychin

    That is the most historically inaccurate thing I ever read in my life.

    The history of Christianity one of bloody intolerance. One Holy War and witch burning after another. How can you possibly deny it?

    In he present day, you are exhibit “A” of the sort of intolerance I’m talking about.

  26. But before the boy knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right, the land of the two kings you dread will be laid waste.

    How you find an “age of reason” to be a central point in that verse is beyond me. The emphasis in it sentence is on laying waste to two kingdoms. There’s the Loving God again.

  27. I don’t know why Graychin has a fetish about bloody intolerance while fighting against Muhammad’s legion in the Crusades. I know Graychin’s history is as poor as his attitude, but if he has to refer to some sin 600 years ago to designate guilt, Christianity must be doing something right.

    The one thing I can’t determine, is why Graychin would have a problem with the shedding of blood. Graychin’s beloved Dimocratic party declared war on the unborn in 1973 and hasn’t quit since. 50MM dead and counting…

  28. Oh well, if you wish to condemn the kiddies to the never land to follow you, who am I to argue? There is that generational sin…

    But before the boy knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right

    This isn’t rocket science Jack. That’s how I find “age of accountability.”

  29. “There is something about Christianity that makes it far less tolerant of diverse beliefs than almost any other faith”-Greychin

    I’m impressed. Very few people get so far in life with such prominent displays of ignorance.

    I’m sure the Hindus track with this…especially with their idea of a caste system which one is born into and never moves beyond (at least until the next life), or the Muslims, who demand submission to their bloody rock-worshipping ways…unless it is more profitable to tax the eyeballs out of you with their jizya. Or maybe the sihks…they are perfectly harmless.

    Yes indeed. Those Christians? IN-tolerant, I tell you. Draw a picture of the pedophile prophet of Islam and you get chanting throngs in the street howling for your head to be separated from your body with a rusty scimitar, but put a cross in a glass of urine, and those evil intolerant Christians commit the brutal act of asking to not be made to pay for the priviledge of being insulted by “art”. Oh, the humanity!

    We have people charged with the protection of US citizens who can’t even bring themselves to admit publically that the biggest threat to peace and security in this nation are the adherants to the Religion of Pieces, but at the same time, the self-appointed intelligentsia cannot condemn Christianity…the same Christianity that has been the bedrock of western civilization for centuries…fast enough.

    GC, I really don’t care if you and the rest of left loathe yourselves. I loathe you too, but when you engage in sustained acts of progression, you should be ready for the average person to toss the bullshit flag, and call the penalty.

  30. “I don’t know why Graychin has a fetish about bloody intolerance while fighting against Muhammad’s legion in the Crusades.”

    This fact doesn’t make Graychin correct, but Crusaders killed more than just Muslims on their way to, and upon conquering Jerusalem.

  31. Let’s not stop with the Crusades. There were also the Tudor religious disputes in England, between papists and Protestants. Many beheadings, torture…. All in the name of Christianity, of course.

    The Spanish Inquisition.

    Protestant/Catholic terrorism in Northern Ireland into the late 20th Century.

    I know you don’t want an exhaustive list, but I’m sure it’s easy to find.

  32. Graychin,

    You going to refuse service I assume in Catholic and Baptist hospitals west of you? Better head to Arkansas if you need hospital care. It will severely limit your choices if you head this way. Of course, you’re going to be limited in Arkansas too, but one of those wonderful gov’t sponsored types serving the homeless will do. It will demonstrate your “piety” you’re always insinuating that only you capable of carrying.

    But I’d have a lot more respect for you if you simply lived by your own rules and avoided these evil and phony Christians all together.

    So why is that you never get around to listing all these charitable works of yours? That fine, upstanding citizen of Eucha, OK. Shoot, as sweet and intelligent as you are and in a town that small, I’ll bet they’ve built a monument by now to you in the town square. If you’re half the trick pony you lead us to believe, can’t you list but a few of your works we would all recognize to fulfill that sense of superiority you like to carry?

    ——————————–

    Here is what you do Graychin, whether religion or politics. It’s your pattern every time and the worst case of intellectual dishonesty because it is not debate; it’s hypocrisy.

    You find fault, any fault – then smear it across the spectrum. You hold people or politicians you don’t like or support to perfection, when anybody honest recognizes the churches themselves are full of fallible people and lost souls.

    So I think it is overdue time you start to answer questions instead of simply making accusation and probing for answers to use as later ammunition. I’ve attempted to answer your questions – now you return the favor.

    See, you never get around to addressing your own very visible weaknesses. You man enough to answer a few questions?

    Man up and prove me wrong.

    Let’s play a game.

    Why don’t you show me the good works from the Left. The godless, the pagan, the atheists, the pseudo worshipers and union jacks you run. Why don’ t you show me the good works from your pseudo church over in and around the Grand Lake area. Take Jay, Grove, Eucha, as far as you need to extend it across Eastern Oklahoma.

    I want you to list all of the works you can think and find from either your progressive party or your progressive church, which are actually one and the same because your politics is your religion.

    Then I will list what these phony churches in just Oklahoma have done in the name of Christianity as good works recently and we can compare.

    And we will let a 3rd party decide who walks the walk. I’ll let you pick the participant here to make the decision about who does what? Rutherford, anybody…

    You put your list of progressive accomplishment next to the head lopping, village razing churches, tyrants, and pedophiles pastoring these evil organizations you mock on a regular basis.

    I believe I recognize a hypocrite, liar and phony. I think you’re just as self-absorbed old fool with Leftist politic about all you’ve got to fill you day. I think you lie about half the time. I don’t think you’re anywhere near as saintly as you make yourself out to be, nor are these losers you call friends.

    So prove me wrong Jack. 🙂

  33. gray you fail with your argument due to at least two points.

    #1 you have a bad understanding of “original sin” and the gap between God and humans.
    #2. looking at the folks that epically fail at practicing Christianity (Spanish inquisition,Salem Witch,Catholic pedo-priests etc.)and using that to judge Christianity is just too whacked.

  34. Protestant/Catholic terrorism in Northern Ireland into the late 20th Century.
    near and dear to my heart. if you think religion was the primary mover in the troubles you are troubled.

  35. Tex, you have never been wrong in your entire life. You have given me a hopeless task. Why bother?

    Besides, “progressive” churches in Oklahoma are pretty darn rare, except for Catholic churches. And they become less progressive all the time as they direct their focus more tightly on anti-abortion efforts and less on helping those people who have already been born.

    Alfie, I respectfully disagree that I have a bad understanding of original sin. I also understand the whole business of Redemptive Incarnation perfectly well.

    I just don’t happen to believe any of it. It makes no sense to me at all. Perhaps I understand it TOO well.

  36. if you think religion was the primary mover in the (Northern Ireland) troubles you are troubled.

    You are right to an extent. Often conflicts that are disguised as religious or racial are really about which group will have power and control.

    Or they are more about cultural differences than racial differences, explaining why Irish immigrants experienced discrimination when Irish people are completely “white.”

  37. @gc re original sin. My comment to you was coming from my perception that you see original sin in the very parochial manner best seen put forth via the Catholic church.It’ not that baby are sinners,or saw a pre-marital vagina or know nothing.
    As a human you are simply separate from God.That gap just is and Jesus is the bridge.
    I dislike getting into faith threads so I’ll walk now with a nod to a good follow up on the NI thing.

  38. I confess that my theological knowledge (not my belief) has come through a Catholic filter.

    But Catholics are Christians too. Aren’t they? And more numerous world-wide than Protestants?

  39. Catholic Churches are “progressive” in Oklahoma? I’ll be damned. I’ve been married to a devout one for 23 years, raised two kids K-12 through their schools, and never once knew the Catholic Diocese was “progressive.” In fact, it always appeared to me to be just the opposite.

    Jack, I didn’t say anything about you finding “progressive” churches. Don’t limit yourself – expand your mind and find me all those “progressive” do gooders in any capacity, including the T-World board. You know, Planned Parenthood, Indian Casinos with free fire water, pubic education with 7% literacy rates. Those kind of fine “progressive” institutions of good works.

    And that reminds me, would you do me a favor? Would you tell the “Democrat” on the T-World board, perhaps the most vocal and pompous of “progressive” thinkers, and the one that bragged of being the “teacher of the teachers” in Tulsa public schools, that Keyboard Cowboy said congratulations are in order. A 7% college competency rate upon high school graduation is outstanding! 😆 😆

    That’s like being a hitting instructor in the major leagues and having a team batting average of .071. That is progressivism at its dead level finest! 😛 I mean, if I had only know of your mindset’s greatness before hand…

    I guess when they started war on the Christians in public schools back in the 70s, removed all the symbols, and about 175 years of history, so we all moved our kids elsewhere, those libs like you knew exactly what they were doing!

    You guys are terrific! 😉

  40. But Catholics are Christians too. Aren’t they? Asked in total innocence that question is still dangerous. No thread could do justice to any explanation I can offer there. I will say I grew up in a hyper Catholic environment (Boston) and am married to a practicing Catholic.
    Bottom line babies are not guilty of a sin unique to being a baby. they are humans and are on a path that will,if they choose,if they are exposed to it etc. need to decide if they are want to go on the Path.
    There is no limbo,purgatory,separate places for the Baptists,Methodists etc. uuuugggggggg
    Honest I can’t go on. Religion isn’t great. Faith is a beautiful thing.I personally know JC is right for me. I don’t desire to go here though no offense.

  41. Alfie,

    If you haven’t figured this out by now, Graychin is “probing.” 🙂

    Find anything, any fault which will stick to anyone who claims to be affiliated with any faith under the banner of Christianity, and work on condemning the entire institution from there.

    Original sin…check
    Social justice…check
    Hypocrisy….check
    Leviticus…check
    Genesis….check
    Love The Neighbor…check
    Divorce…check
    Sexual sin…check
    Paul a homosexual….check

    {Ad Nauseam}

  42. Tex, I’m not your secretary. Tell him yourself. Besides, I don’t post there any more.

    Alfie, how can a question be dangerous? Perhaps Tex will agree with you and explain.

    I never meant to imply that babies are guilty of a sin unique to being a baby. It’s just that everyone is born with original sin, including babies. Catholics used to teach that unbaptized babies who die don’t go to heaven, but rather to “limbo.” But I understand that the Vatican has somehow abolished limbo in recent years.

    But that runs into trouble in the “salvation through faith alone” paradigm. How can a baby believe? How can a Hottentot of 1,000 years ago have believed? Isn’t the bible pretty clear in its insistence that those Hottentots went to hell?

  43. Tex, I’m not your secretary. Tell him yourself.

    I just figured you guys were good pals. You think alike, you sound alike, the proof of performance is alike. 😯

    You know, like a favor to your old friend “Tex.”

    I mean come on Jack Sr. What greater testimonial to liberalism and big government than our outstanding public education results? I would have used the post office, but it is going out of business soon. California and Detroit, MI, seemed like rubbing salt in the wound and all. And I mean, who can forget Obama’s phenomenal record fighting the war employment, not to mention his terrific performance concerning the war on domestic terror.

    I think perhaps the greatest accomplishment for Obama, is that he has been able to remove the words “radical Islam” from our lexicon.

    I expect our economy to boom on that point alone! 😉

    You know Gray, you still haven’t listed for me one success of liberalism besides getting elected yet.

  44. I am beginning to worry about my friend Rutherford.

    Rutherford? Rutherford? Are you still with us Rutherford? It would be a fitting tribute if his last Twitter were another link to a Palin Bash from somebody nobody has ever heard of.

    —————————

    Take your pick Graychin…more helpful if you can keep it recent so we don’t dredge up the history you controlled until about 1980.

    Why don’t you start at 1980 like I did? That ought to be a fair test.

  45. Questions and comments in the static environment of a blog thread,void of face to face humanity can easily be dangerous. The slippery slope is very slippery there and best not trodden. I would require a real world forum to tackle the pro’s and con’s of any church,denomination or faith.
    As for the great history of liberalism I’m game to see an example that dates it prior to say 1910

  46. I think people are starting to get it about how to deal with progressivism and the race hustling pimps. This is how you fight back against liberals and shut their big mouths. You want to boycott Arizona L.A. city council? Have it your way Jorge….

    http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/local-beat/Power-Play-Over-Immigration-Law-94251079.html

    Put those sons of bitches in the dark with no stoplights and rolling blackouts. Let them get a taste of LA when the city is about 95 degrees with no air conditioning and covered with smog. Boycott this mofos! 😆 Let the frickin’ racists swelter in the heat, and if they try to cross into Arizona? Ready, Aim…

    The next thing I would cut off is their water supply and the road system. Frickin’ California trucks can detour via Nevada & Utah. Dam that aqueduct up and let these bastards thirst for awhile too. They can drink out of the Pacific.

    How’s that post racial President looking to you now Graychin?

    Hasn’t Obama done a swell job of unruffling feathers like you promised?

  47. “Why don’t you start at 1980 like I did? That ought to be a fair test.”

    Not exactly. For only three of the past the thirty years since 1980 has there been a Democratic Congress and a Democratic president. And Clinton was a mealy-mouthed centerist, not a real progressive.

    Since your guys have been in a position to obstruct anything progressive for 90% of the past thirty years, do you REALLY think that’s a fair test?

    That said, I consider the enactment of the recent health care bill to be one of two major progressive accomplishments in that time, although its full implementation is still years away. And it is deeply flawed from compromises with the likes of Lieberman and Nelson, and needs a lot of fixing, But the foundation has been built.

    The greatest recent progressive achievement was saving the nation from a repeat of the Great Hoover Depression. As it was, it was restrained to be only the Great Bush Recession.

    Americans with Disabilities Act? Check. I see that Rand Paul wants to repeal it.

  48. a. Not Hoovers Depression.
    b. there are studies that show the ADA hurt the disabled worker stats.
    c.PPAC? omg
    d. Great Society? scratch that as it demonstrably failed.
    e. national Parks? Dammit that was Republican,does that still count?
    f. FDR and the new Deal. MM court stacking count much?
    I think we should define the terms if we’re gonna stack the 2 up.

  49. Your rant proves that he doesn’t lead a post-racial nation.

    As did Obama’s calling out the Boston white cop and siding with a known racist without all the facts. Or maybe his chide of “they bring a knife, we’ll bring a gun.” My favorite was “get in their faces.”

    However, my rant no more so than your anti-Semitism, phony white assuage, or blatant Christian bias.

    How’s that transparency working out for you Graychin. And to conclude, do you remember when you and I started conversing again? Our very first conversation from recent past. Where you sung the praises of Europe?

    😆 Your timing is prescient old, wise Jack Sr.

  50. I consider the enactment of the recent health care bill to be one of two major progressive accomplishments in that time

    Was it the 2-1 disapproval of the nation, or the additional $2.4 trillion in debt that won you over? Of course, the CBO, after all the arm twisting an lying had to revise their estimate of cost overrun, which they now estimate at about $300,000,000,000,000.00. And it will be a fiasco – if we don’t lose our AAA debt rating over it.

    Yes sir, that’s progress all right.

    Now how exactly did the Progressives bring us out of this great recession again? Quadrupled the deficit, higher unemployment, and Mahmoud spitting in THE ONE’s face with his dialogue, while we stiff our allies.

    Yes sir, that’s progress all right.

    American with disabilities Act…. 😆

    Mind numbing. Jimmy Carter is happy, though. I rest my case.

  51. ADA was signed by President George H. W. Bush.

    You can’t blame Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton for EVERYTHING you don’t like. But keep trying.

  52. OK, now some comments. I’m trying to avoid late night commenting so I’ll handle a few now before the night zips by.

    Two anecdodal incidents- seperated by nearly two decades- where you were emotionally distrought? – Gorilla

    Ah yes G. Religion if nothing else is intensely personal. So two anecdotes where my emotions were running high are very good examples to use. And the two decade separation adds more fuel to the fire. My concerns can’t be appeased by “oh well, that was just the way it was back in the day.”

  53. You’re a parent; surely you know better than to believe that love is all kittens and sunshine with nothing expected of the recipient. – BiW

    BiW the reason I think your parent analogy fails is that you did not ask your children to worship you (I’m guessing 😉 ). You did not tell your children that you were omniscient or omnipotent. As parents we set guidelines in the hope that our children will become productive adults. We love them even when we punish them for doing the wrong thing. But you know what else I think most of us do?

    Now I can’t say this for sure because I’ve never been there. But I’m guessing that any of us who have ever LOST a child have very little room for anger and recrimination. I’m guessing we forgive our children their trespasses as we try to overcome our grief over their loss. If humans can exhibit that kind of forgiveness in death, why cannot I not expect that from God?

  54. The whole notion that saint and sinner alike have an equal shot at heaven as long as they accept Christ defeats, in my opinion, one of the major benefits of religion. Religion, when it works, guides us on how to live. How to treat each other. If I kill 25 four year olds and then suddenly find Jesus on my deathbed, Jesus ought to say, “sorry dude, you weren’t thinking about heaven when you killed those kids”.

    Also, I thought more about the whole extortion angle and came up with another analogy. When I was told that if I accepted Christ I’d get to see my Granddad again, it kind of reminds me of kidnapping. “If you ever wanna see your kid again, you’ll pay me 1 million dollars.” Except in this case it’s “if you ever wanna see your Granddad again, you’ll accept Christ as your savior.” It’s a form of blackmail, extortion.

  55. You can’t blame Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton for EVERYTHING you don’t like.

    Yup that 101st Congress was something else bwahha.

  56. Rutherford I’ll extend my e sympathies but have to swerve immediately after.
    It’s not extortion. If you don’t like the rules at the playground get your own ball,sandbox whatever and have a nice day.
    Why did an atheist have a minister at their funeral?

  57. Your example in #62 fails to prevent an oversimplification of things you don’t know or really even respect.
    Whether a murderer truly repents isn’t up for your judgement. I would caution you not to believe God believes everything we say though.

  58. You don’t partake of the training, yet you “know” enough to make an ultimate conclusion. – BiW

    Two thoughts. First, I didn’t say I knew enough to make a conclusion. I was expressing my notion of what a loving God must be. I think a lot of people shape God in their preferred image. I think you do that BiW. I think you picture God as that firm father.

    Second, why should I need “training” to have a relationship with God? I wasn’t trained to have a relationship with my wife or my daughter. I simply relate to them. If I chose to believe in a God, who are you or anyone else to “train” me in my relationship with Him?

    This reminds me of another point that I find fascinating. Our relationship with God is a very personal one and I would guess Tex would agree it is one of the most important relationships one can have. That being said, a lot of the comments in this thread have been dryly academic. I deliberately said at the beginning of my article that it would be personal and not academic. No Bible verse can mitigate the damage of a man telling a bereaved person that his grandmother is going to hell unless she gets lucky and finds God in a good mood that day.

    This is why I disdain organized religion. I have no problem with folks who believe in God or in Christ or that they were one and the same. I have a problem when that belief is overlaid with process, bureaucracy, cronyism and product sales. Organized religion suffers from the same problem as every other organization. Why can’t people worship privately? Why is the club needed? Why the exclusivity?

  59. One more thing … a couple of you have made a very valid point and I alluded to this when I called my grandmother’s funeral absurd and that perhaps the pain that resulted was well deserved.

    Why on Earth give a religious funeral to a woman who did not believe? I agree 100% this put the minister in an awkward position. It was the height of hypocrisy. But again, funerals are often more for the living than the dead, and much of my grandmother’s family WAS religious. My mother, who was not, did not want to hurt the other’s feelings and she agreed to let things go as they did. Ultimately, it was folly. Although I was hurt, I considered the minister more of a fool than anything malicious.

    I guess this seems contradictory that I knew the funeral was executed poorly to begin with and yet I expected a different result, but there it is.

  60. Ain’t Rand Paul a kick in the ass? You know in my old age I could see myself becoming a Libertarian but both Ron and Rand show some bad history with minorities. The messenger makes me worry about the message.

  61. If you don’t like the rules at the playground get your own ball,sandbox whatever and have a nice day.
    Why did an atheist have a minister at their funeral?

    I think I answered that in #67 Alfie but I’m guessing your comment and mine crossed in the ether.

    I agree with Graychin that 99% of religious people are of the cafeteria variety. Unlike Graychin, I don’t really defend this. See my old post about Patrick Kennedy. If you don’t like the rules of the club get out of the club.

    As I said in #67, any of us who were hurt probably had it coming, but it didn’t make the hurt any less severe.

  62. Hey, I apologize. I added two too many zeroes when I added the cents for effect.

    Make that 3,400,000,000,000.00 budget overrun so far by President Impotent. We want to be fair and all.

    I didn’t say who signed ADA Jack Sr. I said it was a doodah – that is why I was laughing at your list of accomplishments. The Jimmy Carter comment was until recently, the most inept, moronic President.

    Jimmah is now happy that he no longer holds the title of worst President in the last 100 years.

  63. Rutherford, I hope you’re feeling better. I was half joking but I was starting to fidget thinking you really might be in bad shape. Glad to see you here. Now I have to rip you. 🙂

    I think a lot of people shape God in their preferred image. I think you do that BiW. I think you picture God as that firm father.

    BiW shapes his belief by what is written Rutherford, just like I do. Both of us far from perfect, but we both believe and attempt to obey.

    No Bible verse can mitigate the damage of a man telling a bereaved person that his grandmother is going to hell unless she gets lucky and finds God in a good mood that day.

    Why should the Bible mitigate the damage? The Bible clearly says what happens when one rejects the Creator. Luck had nothing to do with the decision – but the decision was solely your grandmother’s. You need to accept this.

    This is why I disdain organized religion. I have no problem with folks who believe in God or in Christ or that they were one and the same. I have a problem when that belief is overlaid with process, bureaucracy, cronyism and product sales. Organized religion suffers from the same problem as every other organization. Why can’t people worship privately? Why is the club needed? Why the exclusivity?

    I too disdain organized religion – it has become gift wrapped, bureaucratic, and I believe Jesus would disdain what much of it has become. Much of it is a poor excuse for worship and I no longer attend much of it. But that doesn’t hold for all of it.

    However, we are to worship publicly as that the essence of sharing the Good News. And Christianity is exclusive, for we believe there is no other way.

    I agree with Graychin that 99% of religious people are of the cafeteria variety. Unlike Graychin, I don’t really defend this

    I don’t find you or Jack Sr. qualified to make this statement. Though your both somewhat different in your approach, you both come to false conclusions. You Rutherford are simply uninterested and (and I don’t say this maliciously) clueless, because you simply don’t have the depth or knowledge base to fairly make a conclusion – you have little exposure. Jack Sr. is openly hostile to Evangelical religion – he’s clearly an enemy, a scoffer. I find Jack Sr. a complete phony and always have. I don’t believe you will be judged as harshly though I believe you to be completely foolish, but then I am not the judge. I’ve got enough faults of my own to contend with. 😉

    What’s weird is I’m typing all of this with tornado sirens going on all around. If I don’t report back to duty, you’ll know I should have taken cover instead of dicking around.

  64. See Rutherford,

    In my conversation with Jack Sr., formerly known as Graychin, I had noted that Jimmy Carter was a happy man because he no longer could be labeled as the worst President ever.

    I see that I’m not the only one that shares that opinion. Colorado is now on board too. 🙂

  65. If you don’t like the rules at the playground get your own ball, sandbox whatever and have a nice day.

    You mean if I don’t like the rules that the Christian God has allegedly laid down, I’m free to move to another planet where maybe different rules apply? Where maybe child molesters and Tim McVeigh won’t be in heaven, but all those unbaptized babies will? I just might take that deal.

    I had no idea that was an option. 😀

  66. “You know in my old age I could see myself becoming a Libertarian “-Rutherford

    Oh yeah? How is that possible?

  67. By the way, the election of Rand Paul once again proves everything you have ever said about the Tea Party wrong.

  68. Jack Sr.

    Since we started to carry on our “new” dialogue on the R.L. blog, I have determined one thing about you – one immutable truth.

    You’re a red diaper baby! Kind of a quasi-communist, as long as you don’t have to play by the same rules you wish to enforce on everyone else. I knew you were irreligious as all get out, and I’ll let your foolish be dealt with accordingly, but I never realized how steeped you were in closet Jew hating.

    You’re really far left of the normal Oklahoma rube. You’re more like the hags from Code Pink, the SDS crowd from the 60s – the America hating, traitorous type that resides on the coasts.

    And the only thing I haven’t been able to figure out is why you haven’t picked up mammy and moved to libbie land. You’re like a fish out of water in the state you live.

  69. Oh Rabbit, my poor long eared off kilter friend.

    You know what the election of Rand Paul means? It means that the Tea Party shouldn’t be reinventing the wheel. Now maybe I misunderstand what a Libertarian is but I’m pretty sure Ron Paul and his son pretty much fit the bill. So, why on Earth do the Tea Party gang need to run around with their amorphous, unfocused anti-government rant when they could simply call themselves libertarians and get some respect. You see, I believe that the Tea Party is not making Rand Paul … on the contrary, Rand Paul is going to get some respect for the Tea Party because he’s overlaying their gibberish with a tried and true political philosophy.

    Now … you doubt how I could possibly become a libertarian in my old age. OK, again, I may be attributing the wrong things to libertarians but here is a list I could sign off on:

    Government out of the bedroom
    Government out of the recreational drug business
    Government out of military presence in every corner of the globe
    Simplification of the tax code

    As I get older I will probably become even more of a selfish bastard than I already am and I will care less about social justice …. or at least cynically finally give up on it. So I’ll be less concerned with how government is going to protect the vulnerable without sufficient tax income to pay for programs.

    The problem with Ron Paul and his son: they both have really spotty records regarding civil rights. The father had a newsletter that demeaned blacks (he has disowned any responsibility for it) and the son says the Civil Rights Act should not have been passed and the ADA was a bad idea.

    Now I’m only guessing, but I kinda think there are buildings that I can get into now thanks to the ADA that I might have needed assistance getting into pre-ADA. Good thing for me. 🙂

  70. Oh Tex on a side note … I have a Twitter acquaintance who lives in Oklahoma who nearly went Dorothy Gale last week when a tornado touched down five miles from his house. So, my good thoughts are with you dude. Run to that damn basement if you need to.

    As for your daughter … congrats on the MCATs!! Maybe you’ll get over your East coast resentment and encourage her to apply to Harvard Med School. 😉 Take it from someone who knows, at least 50% of getting into Harvard is dumb luck. She’s got the scores — I assume she’s got the GPA — so spin that wheel of fortune and see where it takes her! 🙂

  71. Thank you “R” – we did the Snoopy dance about my daughter last night – last hurdle to med school, unless she blows the interview, or something.

    Gotta brag – she’s a 4.0 student in biochemistry and genomics at A&M with a minor in mathematics. Can you imagine taking Differential Equations or Calculus II for elective? Only sick people do something like that. Hell, I took crap like Music Appreciation for my electives. 🙂

    She should graduate Summa Cum Laude and has never made a B. I married a woman a heckavu lot smarter than I am (she really was a good student), and our oldest seems to have adopted all of the same qualities.

    There was one downer – my daughter finally asked about my MCAT score.

    My daughter absolutely torched my MCAT – she was almost perfect in the Physics/Chemistry portion and I can assure that is an absolute bitch of a test. I was almost embarrassed when she asked me last night what I got.

    She’s such a sweet kid she goes, “It’s okay dad – I’m proud of you for making it and you were pretty good at math.”

    That’s code for good lawd, my dad is a moron. And I had her fooled all those years of high school. 😆

    But I don’t see her applying to Harvard for one reason “R”. Her beau is also going to med school at U of Texas – Houston branch which is about as good as it gets around here at the Anderson Center. I can’t imagine she won’t try to follow. He’s one year ahead of her. My daughter is a Texas girl through and through now.

    Love your baby “R” – once they leave for college and find a boyfriend, you’ll be lucky to hear from them once a month. Everything is filtered through mom.

  72. “Government out of the bedroom
    Government out of the recreational drug business
    Government out of military presence in every corner of the globe
    Simplification of the tax code”-Rutherford

    I guess that’s part of it. Blow jobs and butt sex should probably be legal. Not high on my priority list, but whatever.

    I didn’t realize the last 3 on your list were so important to you due to your incessant knee jerk support of Obama. My bad, I must have not read those blogs. And you are an Obama sycophant why?

    Libertarians have a pretty big tent but I’m not sure your giant stimulus package and monstrosity of health care bill would fit in it.

    As for the Tea Party….why do they have to call themselves anything to “get” respect? I don’t “get” that comment.

    It aint jibberish to me, buddy. It’s about throwing your legion of heroes out of office. Our government has SUCKED big time for a LONG time. One does not have to be “focused” to find fault with that bloated pig and make that pig realize they serve us.

    It’s simple really. Lets quit giving the bloated pig our money.

    Do you have any idea how much money I see wasted every day at work? Millions upon millions. Bureaucratic parasites. Government gangsters. And that’s just in the Department of Education. Your bloated pig is so big, dude. It’s every where. Soon, it will be sitting it’s fat ass on our hospitals and doctor offices, thanks to you and your big government pals.

    And you, my friend, want it more bloated.

    So don’t try and pretend you’re now some kind of hipster, sir. You aint no libertarian. You have done nothing but defend the big bloated pig on here for almost 2 years.

    It’s going to be soooo sweet in November.

  73. R, emotionally distrought people don’t think rationally, which is why liberals continuously get things wrong.

    You don’t think your frame of reference changed at all in 20 years? That these two instances were completely surrounded by the same context?

    I have my own views on religion, but I know enough to not take two events of hyperbole and to use them as the norm, and then come to some conclusion on the general nature of things.

  74. I trust that the Chin is going to start laying waste to Islam any second now, right? If you want to talk about events and theologies of hypocricy, would not Islam be ripe for the picking?

    Or do you only hate Christianity?

    This is something I’ve noticed from the left over the years, Jews and Christians- get under the bus. Muslims, etc- you poor abused thing you.

    I’ll just say this, yes there are instances were religious tenents drove bad things to happen (Salem witch hunts), but by and large, religion has been used as a cover for political action. The Spanish Inquisition wasn’t approved by the Pope, the violence in Northern Ireland revolved around political representation. The Tudor disputs were more about sovereignty (and a little infidelity) than anything else, with the crux being their legitimacy from the Pope or from God. Even if you look at Islam, it is vastly political wrapped in the cloak of pious promise.

    Your points are, well, rather pointless since you have completely failed at understanding the examples you use.

    If you want to debate doctrinal or theological points, have at it, but clearly history isn’t your strong suit…

  75. I don’t talk as much about the many faults of Islam as I do about those of Christianity for one simple reason – I know almost nothing about Islam. I know that a little thing like ignorance doesn’t deter most of you Islam-bashers, but it does deter me.

    For example, there is a photo of a pickup truck with a decal on the tailgate showing the Twin Towers in flames, with the caption “All I need to know about Islam I learned on 9/11.” The decal says a lot about Islam-bashers, but not the message that was intended.

    There is also the fact that I live in a culture saturated with fake Christian piety and religiosity, often for political gain, while honest-to-God disciples of Jesus are drowned out by the noise.

    I don’t hate Christianity at all, Ape. I wish that the teachings of Jesus (not Paul, Jesus) about how to live on this earth would flourish. But I do despise the brand of judgmental, absolutist, intolerant, holier-than-thou “Christianity” which is so dominant in my part of the world, and of which Tex Taylor is such an outstanding example.

  76. Gorilla,

    This man you are speaking to – he’s delusional. Trust me on this one. Graychin lives about fifty miles down the pike from me where the poverty stricken live life off the public dole – “lake people” are what they are referred to in civilization. Hence, the broad support for Progressive thought – a dependent.

    One minute Graychin is telling us he knows nothing of Islam like he does here – but on another board he’s cutting and pasting from Wiki like he is a historian, taking me to task. Jack Sr. says this here:

    I don’t talk as much about the many faults of Islam as I do about those of Christianity for one simple reason – I know almost nothing about Islam.

    Yet on Alfie’s board not 30 minutes before, listen to this response:

    Arabs are an ethnic group or race that usually speaks the Arabic language, historically originating in the Arabian Peninsula, and spread to North Africa 1,000+ years ago.

    Muslims are people who follow the religion of Islam. The ethnicity of predominantly Muslim countries ranges from West African to Indonesian. Indonesia is the most populous Muslim nation.

    Since perhaps 90% of Muslims are Sunni (as opposed to Shia), and since a clear majority of Muslims are ethnically non-Arab, it isn’t even close to the truth to say that Sunni Muslims “are considered Arab.”

    There are two things I wish Graychin, the resident religious expert from Buttfuck, OK, could clear up for us.

    One, if Graychin is no expert on Islam as he admits, where does he get the authenticity to tell us how we are profoundly stupid when we mention how radical Islam is?

    Two, exactly how it is that Jesus thought enough of Paul to personally call Paul to ministry, have Paul pen most of the New Testament, have Paul start the movement of Gentiles vis-a-vis the 1st Century Church, yet according to the profound wisdom of Graychin, Paul a heretic and false prophet? That Paul just flat out wrong about what it means to be a Christian?

    I’m just curious Graychin. How did you determine that you more qualified to write what “true Christianity” is than the personal author called by Jesus himself?

    I had no idea we were dealing with a man of such magnitude. Neither did I realize when I hunted you down, I was conversing with such profundity and piety. Graychin, Holy Man of Grand Lake.

    You should author a new Bible Jack Sr. before your time draws to a close – unless of course, your time will draw to a close Graychin Koresh.

  77. You should author a new Bible Jack Sr. before your time draws to a close

    Well Tex, Gray could probably do at least as good a job as the Book of Mormon, dontcha think? 😉

    Isn’t it funny (unless I’m missing something) that no one since Joseph Smith has been taken seriously when they claimed to get a direct line from God and wrote it all down? Koresh, Jim Jones, etc. all fringe characters despite their following. (Oh yes, let’s not forget Marshall Applewhite and the Heaven’s Gate crew.) Why is it that for most of us (including you) the ability to suspend disbelief stops at modern-day prophets? Why are they called wackos?

  78. Poor Souder. The dick is mightier than the pen or the sword. The minute anyone lectures about family values, they should be viewed with suspicion. As I’ve written here before, I owe my fidelity to 40% ethics and 60% lack of opportunity. I can only hope if the opportunity percentage changed, that I could muster the ethics to do right. The last thing any of us needs to do is be holier than thou about getting laid.

  79. ADA is bad but perhaps here and now isn’t the place.
    People will always look for something and be open to finding it in all the wrong places.
    part of the reason modern day prophets don’t get much respect is a better educated audience. You all can have non consesual non contextual fun with that if you want.
    The dick is mightier than the pen or the sword
    FALSE!!!! It would be the corresponding female part that has the power. The problem guys have is that the penis has control,an off switch as it were,temporary as it may be of the brain.

  80. Why is it that for most of us (including you) the ability to suspend disbelief stops at modern-day prophets? Why are they called wackos?

    The way the question is phrased could lead to a discussion in itself to the distinctions between prophets with a capital “P” and those with a lower-case “p”, and the sects that disagree with whether they are stil among us as those who have been blessed with one of the gifts of the Spirit described in the Bible. Tabling that issue for now, I would return to your question and say that for some, it is because of this warning in the Book of Revlations, Chapter 22, Verses 18-19:

    18 For[a] I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add[b] to him the plagues that are written in this book; 19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away[c] his part from the Book[d] of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

    For others, it might be because they test the words of these prophets (your term) against the Word of the Bible, and the prphets fail in the consistency department.

    For those like you, they don’t believe anyway, so they don’t give the speaker any more legitimacy than they would any other religious figure.

    And then there are those whose BS detectors start howling like banshees when they listen in to these people.

  81. Why can’t people worship privately? Why is the club needed?

    Because not all of the gifts of the spirit are distirbuted in equal measure. From 1 Corinthians 12:4-11:

    4 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. 7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: 8 for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same[a] Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.

    These gifts make the church,-the Body of Christ- whole, and allow for correction when a misunderstanding is embraced. This doesn’t mean that it is impossible to have a relationship with God, or to understand the full dimension of the same, but if you are doing it yourself, it will likely take you a whole lot longer to understand aspects that may be easily understood by your bretheren. Nor does it mean that attendence in church is your ticket to the Kingdom. It isn’t a Union; what you get out of it is a corollation of what you put into it, much like anything else in life that is worthwhile.

  82. Careful BiC,

    You’ll offend Jack Graychin’s sensitivities by using a letter from Paul in the defense of the faith – that is unacceptable doctrine in Eucha, OK.

    See BiC, the Bible according to Jack Graychin Sr. starts at Matthew 1 and ends at, while we are not sure, but it can’t go past someplace in Luke – because Jack Sr. didn’t like the Gospel John either when I provided scripture documenting who John said Jesus was. More so, only certain parts of the Gospels are acceptable in the “Bible according to Graychin”, because they don’t jive with the Left Wing of the wholly pact of the Democratic party either.

    And since you and believe all scripture inspired, I have no idea why the book of Matthew, Mark, or Luke should hold much inspiration either for Jack Sr. – but who is to argue with “judge not lest ye be judged?”

  83. but who is to argue with “judge not lest ye be judged?”

    Wow. I might feel convicted if I hadn’t read the whole chapter and had done so with discernment. But then, I wasn’t speaking to GC, either, I was answering Rutherford, who was asking a question honestly. 🙂

  84. “R”,

    Well Tex, Gray could probably do at least as good a job as the Book of Mormon, dontcha think?

    No, because the Book of Mormon does have a large flock of followers – and most are devout people. I can’t help but admire the way many Mormons carry themselves.

    The Book of Jack Graychin Sr. has one devotee – if you believe his blog, and that one is been pronounced certifiable.

    The Mormons are an enigma to me. While in medical school I happen to pal around with three of them – all fine and incredibly talented people. In many ways, they provide the best glimpse of how Christ tells us to carry ourselves – devoted to family, serious in their walk. The debate ensues when you get to the details.

    They invited me to join them and we had a frank discussion of differences. While I came to admire them as people and at one time colleagues, as I am convinced they are indeed truthful in their walk, I simply and politely begged out after we begin to share our differences. For instance, the belief that man is what God once was.

    Ironically, BiC used the very scripture I would have used to say why I believe the real message stopped at The Book of the Revelation.

    Christ tells us that He is the Beginning & the End; the Alpha & the Omega. I choose to believe that.

    I’ve been thinking about you “R” since you wrote this post. I’ve been wondering how foreign my thinking must be to you – how much of must sound like mysticism or silliness; perhaps in some ways, I look toward the Mormons. Ironic you mentioned them.

  85. BiC,

    Since Graychin is fond of the Sermon on the Mount, I always wanted to ask him what I old Jack Sr. thought of the verse which says,

    “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.

  86. How can I not like a man that spews this type of honesty?

    As I’ve written here before, I owe my fidelity to 40% ethics and 60% lack of opportunity. I can only hope if the opportunity percentage changed, that I could muster the ethics to do right.

    I think one of the faults many Democrats make in judging citizens who vote predominately Republican is that they believe we feel somehow the Republican party the party of morality. When I hear the term “family values” come out of someone’s mouth, my antennae immediately goes up and the B.S. meter clicks on.

    What are family values but cheap cliche?

    I can only speak for myself, but that is certainly not my reasoning for lending my past support to the Republicans. So many of these delusional idiots are obvious snake oil salesman. I don’t believe many of them anymore than I believed Bill Clinton.

    I vote Republican because I believe in limited government. The fact those in power continue to disappoint me does cause me a high degree of consternation. But the mantra of the nanny state of the Dimocratic party leaves me little choice but to continue to vote against the Democratic party. Throw in infanticide under the guise of pro-choice, “it’s fer the children”, the push for gay marriage, failed public schools, anti-Americanism and cowardice, and the push for socialism by any name makes the decision to pull the “R” lever an easy.

  87. Other then the gay marriage thing, which, in a vacuum, doesn’t really sway my voting one way or the other, that last paragraph by Tex pretty much sums up the politics of the Rabbit to a tee.

  88. I can’t really vote for a pro-life candidate anymore.

    It has nothing to do with law, at this point. I just can’t trust someone who doesn’t see what abortion really is. It’s not rocket science. It’s the most revolting thing about America. I find it to be even harder to stomach then the history of slavery. (And I’m not remotely dismissing the sick realities of slavery.)

    The truth about abortion against the backdrop for why 90% of them take place has made the Dead Rabbit literally weep once before.

    An aborted baby lived for 24 hours just the other week.

    I defy any pro-choicer to do their homework. But they never take me up on it. Thus, people like me carry their guilt and sorrow.

  89. Tex, I know very little about Islam, but I definitely know the difference between an Arab and a Muslim. There is overlap, but the two are very different.

    I admit my ignorance about Islam, but obviously I know more about it than you do.

    There are real family values, and there is the cheap cliche. When a politician starts talking about family values, bet the ranch that he’s into the cheap cliche.

    I vote Republican because I believe in limited government.

    Like the “patriot” act? Warrantless eavesdropping? Detention without charges? Suspension of Miranda warnings? Is that the kind of “limited government” in which you believe? Or do you just believe in “limited government” for multinational corporations?

  90. Exactly how it is that Jesus thought enough of Paul to personally call Paul to ministry…”

    Because Paul says so, of course. Even though Paul never met Jesus until after Jesus’ death, burial, resurrection, and ascension, he claimed to know more about what Jesus taught than the apostles and disciples who actually knew Jesus during his time on earth.

    Paul tells us about his experience of meeting Jesus on the road to Damascus. That’s how we know that Jesus chose Paul. There isn’t anything mysterious about it.

    Which is why through the ages organized Christianity has followed the teachings of Paul more closely than the teachings of Jesus himself.

  91. Because Paul says so, of course. Even though Paul never met Jesus until after Jesus’ death, burial, resurrection, and ascension, he claimed to know more about what Jesus taught than the apostles and disciples who actually knew Jesus during his time on earth.

    Really? Paul said this? Can I trouble you for a citation?

  92. Jack Graychin Sr.,

    Tex, I know very little about Islam, but I definitely know the difference between an Arab and a Muslim.

    Yes, and I know the difference between American and a Christian. There’s an overlap to those too. I know a few Syrian Christians, Lebanese Christians, and even a few who would call themselves Arab Christians. I don’t see either of us an expert an Islam or Arab history. My interest stops at my neighbor’s front yard and what I’ve read since 9/11, as I’ve read all I need to know of Islam to call it what it is right here:

    The angel of the LORD also said to her [Hagar]:
    “You are now with child
    and you will have a son.
    You shall name him Ishmael,
    for the LORD has heard of your misery.

    He will be a wild donkey of a man;
    his hand will be against everyone
    and everyone’s hand against him,
    and he will live in hostility
    toward all his brothers.”

    That was approximately 4,000 years ago from the “Old Testament” book of myths. 😉

    I have no idea what you call your “religion”, but if I were to venture a guess, I would call it progressive politic, mixed it with whatever self-absorbed hocus pocus you need to serve up that day to fit your politic. It is you god.

    If you don’t believe in Paul, and you think he’s a fraud, and you find all of the Bible a disgrace except parts of the Gospel, and you think the Road to Damascus trip garbage, who am I argue? I have the utmost confidence that the 1st Century Church leaders, Peter, the remaining eleven disciples, and even the lowly peasant who worshiped The Way were far better judges than you understanding the truth of Paul. I choose to believe them and not a foolish, old man who will be gone soon enough 2,000 years after the fact.

    But to be consistent, you should also condemn Peter too who says much the same thing.

    Like I’ve said, believe as you must Graychin. I won’ t attempt to lecture you as it not my intent to change your heart. You are the very definition of lost cause in my book and if it weren’t my weakness for liking to pluck your nose as I find you a pompous ass and always have, I should leave well enough alone. Unlike my feelings for Rutherford, I think you more than lost or confused or simply not introduced – I find you wicked and evil.

  93. Like the “patriot” act? Warrantless eavesdropping? Detention without charges? Suspension of Miranda warnings? Is that the kind of “limited government” in which you believe? Or do you just believe in “limited government” for multinational corporations?

    The ultimate red herring, besides maybe the charges of Roe v. Wade and “rape, incest and mommy’s life.”

    What is the purpose of the federal government Graychin? I’d be interested in your take. Does my stating I believe in limited government then invalid the protection of its citizens?

    Of those you’ve listed, I noted Obama has followed suit by none other than BushChimpyMcHitler and Darth Cheney. You forgot GITMO. Shoot, I even give Obama credit – after campaigning against the Bush Doctrine, apparently Obama had a change of heart and picked up the pace of the Bush Doctrine. 😆

    Now Obama’s aiming at American citizens with Predator drones.

    Oh, and he has my permission and an attaboy. Now you’re getting it Barack!

  94. Tex, somehow you have convinced yourself that I support whatever Obama does, but it’s only your vivid imagination. It would be so much more efficient if you would trouble yourself to argue against my real opinions rather than against your imaginary ones.

    You say that you favor limited government. But you really don’t, do you? You would suspend the Bill of Rights itself to give yourself the illusion of a bit more safety.

    Your “principled” belief in limited government is pretty flexible, isn’t it?

  95. Tex, somehow you have convinced yourself that I support whatever Obama does, but it’s only your vivid imagination.

    No, I was just saying your accusations are bogus. Your messiah got a wakeup call when the reality of protecting the country set in. He still doesn’t get it as indicated by his dismal record, but even President MaObama recognizes good information necessary to protect against domestic terrorism.

    Please show me what liberties you personally have experienced that have been infringed upon? One will do…short of taking your shoes off at the airport.

    You say that you favor limited government. But you really don’t, do you? You would suspend the Bill of Rights itself to give yourself the illusion of a bit more safety.

    I’ll go further to add fire to your furnace. If the federal government that you so espouse can’t protect its own citizens, then I see no need for a federal government and we can revert back to each state operating to its own accord.

    So now that I can tailor my arguments against your “real” opinions, I would like to know which amendment concerning the Bill of Rights has been infringed upon.

    If you can’t list specifics, I say your a liar and full of shit, as usual.

  96. Jack Sr.

    By the way, you being the secular Bible scholar, why don’t you show your vast theological intellect and answer BlackisWhite’s question from above?

    I noticed you have a habit of skipping questions when and where convenient after you’ve made stupid statements which you have no intention of backing. You do that to me often as well.

    I thought you the superior intellect with all the answers Graychin? Here’s your moment to shine. 😉

  97. Actually, seeing as how most scholars I am aware of peg Luke as the author of the Book of Acts, in which the story of Paul’s conversion is detailed, and evidence that Luke and Paul were travelling companions and that Luke was Paul’s physician, I’m wondering where, exactly, Greychin gets off questioning Paul’s christianity.

    But I expected no answer from him regarding my previous question. I too have noticed his habit of failing to answer questions regarding some of the sillier things he has said.

  98. BiW,

    I’m not surprised our resident quasi-intellect is confused about Luke and Paul being traveling companions. This will further put Graychin in the hole, because small parts of Luke are the small portion Graychin had previously chosen to believe. I really think when this discussion finally comes to its conclusion, Graychin will be left with “judge not lest ye be judged.” 😆

    Over on another thread, he’s flapping his wings about me “using proof” of something I already believe when I mentioned Apologetics. 😆 How do my kids say it? Well, yeah!!!

    I’m almost embarrassed now that I invited Graychin here. At one time, I thought him similar in capability to Rutherford. I’m afraid Jack’s more on par Maxine Waters. See Graychin, I am wrong about a few things – misjudging your limited capability concerning theology to be a big one. 😈

  99. By the way, you being the secular Bible scholar, why don’t you show your vast theological intellect and answer BlackisWhite’s question from above?

    Which part? That Paul never met Jesus during Jesus’ life? That we must take Paul’s own word for his experience on the road to Damascus? That his influence on the development of Christianity from his own time to ours is beyond profound?

    And BIW needs a SOURCE for all that? You’ve got to be kidding! The source is Paul’s own testimony in his epistles. Actually, I expected you to ‘fess up and admit to BIW that what I said is accurate, even if it puts on a spin that makes you uncomfortable.

  100. Which part?

    Because Paul says so, of course. Even though Paul never met Jesus until after Jesus’ death, burial, resurrection, and ascension, he claimed to know more about what Jesus taught than the apostles and disciples who actually knew Jesus during his time on earth.

    Really? Paul claimed to know more about what Jesus taught than the apostles and disciples who actually knew Jesus during his time on earth? Once again, I ask for the citation to where he claimed this. I mean, certainty of that kind must be supported by actual proof, right?

    I’d say that it isn’t endearing when you play stupid, but I suspect you aren’t playing.

    That we must take Paul’s own word for his experience on the road to Damascus?

    Really? Again, I point to the conclusion of most scholars that Luke was the author of Acts, not Paul, and it is Acts in which the story of Paul’s conversion is relayed. But if you are now going to call Luke a liar, and presumably also Ananais, the head of the Damascus church, who baptized him after being commanded by the Lord to lay hands upon Paul and restore his sight, then I really don’t know what to say to you.

  101. Graychin, you’re spinning and dodging again. You truthfully dance poorly Pops.

    You said and I quote,

    he claimed to know more about what Jesus taught than the apostles and disciples who actually knew Jesus during his time on earth.

    BiW in return, as for your citation as proof. BiW then went further and mentioned correctly that Luke and Paul traveled together, and hinted that you need to explain to all of us how you would know better than Luke – that small part you do believe of the Gospels Luke.

    That led to me reminding you that Peter and Paul preached much of the same message, and with Peter being a disciple that walked with Jesus for 3 1/2 years, why did Peter not dispute the message of Paul?

    Can you answer any of these simple questions. Was Peter also a self-loathing homosexual?

    P.S. – next time you read the Road to Damascus story again, you might note it was Jesus speaking to Paul. You know, like your own Bible where the “RED PARTS” are Jesus speaking?

    Or do we need to doubt all of that too?

  102. Well, the testimony of Ananias in Acts 9:15-16, was recounted again by Luke in Acts 22:14-16, but I am sure that Luke really had no idea, and was simply being a shill for Paul and his brilliant hijacking of Christianity. Afterall, I’m sure Jesus did not mean it when he told the disciples in Matthew 10:19-20, or that if he did, that he still meant that the Spirit that dwelled inside of them would remain silent in the presence of a pretender like Paul, who could not possibly have the commission of God that he spoke of, and clearly usurped the authority that he had because Jesus did not seek him out and call him as a disciple when he was living.

    Of course the other possibility is that Luke and Peter, having spent time with Paul and the other disciples in Jerusalem after he was called, recognized that he too had been commissioned by the same Lord they served, in order to bring the Word to the Gentiles. That is speculation on my part, but for the life of me, I do not know another reason why they would have tolerated his presence, since they did not have to stay when he came to them. Unless of course, that never happened, and once again Luke lied to us.

  103. I meant I can’t vote for a pro-choice candidate anymore. I’m such an idiot!!!!! What scares me is nobody even corrects me anymore. I am the new sensico.

    I am the class room dunce!!!!!!

    I always screw the pro-choice, pro-life thing up. Always!

    Pro-choice. What a dumb fucking word by the way. It should be pro-termination or pro-infanticide.

    I’m a moron.

  104. Rabbit, my old pal. You know I never would disown you. I went looking you up to get back where you belong. The place was starting to be infested with maggots like Graychin and nobody rips a new one like you. We need our resident pesticide control expert.

    You just seem a bit troubled lately – not quite yourself. Figured you needed time to rant a little and something was bugging you. Figured you might share it when time permitted. I was just waiting for you to get back in the groove.

    And on your worst day, you’re a far cry from Densico. 😆

  105. LOL DR I knew what you meant also and resisted the temptation to correct you.

    You are right about one thing. “Pro-choice” is stupid because women who do not have abortions choose not to have them. They are pro-choice also. They simply make a consistent choice on the side of life vs the alternative.

    I’m up too late again … tomorrow a full post on Rand Paul and what he teaches us about ideology in general. 😉

  106. Concerning Paul:

    Many Christians believe that Luke’s account in the Book of Acts of Paul’s conversion on the road to Damascus is a result of Luke and Paul having been traveling companions. But why would Luke the Christian have been traveling with Saul of Tarsus, the persecutor of Christians?

    It is more likely that Luke heard the story some time later, either from Paul himself or from other sources besides Paul, or both. So it is likely that the entire story of Paul’s conversion originates with Paul and from no other source.

    Paul’s conversion occurred after Jesus’ crucifixion, death, burial, resurrection, and ascension into heaven. Both Paul and Luke say this unashamedly, and Paul’s conversion experience is the only recorded face-to-face meeting between Jesus and Paul. Tex, will you at least stipulate to this much?

    Paul speaks frequently of his revelations from God. In these revelations, Paul received information that Jesus himself apparently denied to his disciples during his time on earth.

    We know of Paul’s disagreement with Peter (the “rock” upon which Jesus would build his church) from Paul’s own words, principally in Galatians: “When Peter came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he was clearly in the wrong.”

    Paul refers to himself as the “Apostle to the Gentiles” (Romans 11:13) and almost everyone, perhaps even including Tex, agrees that Paul bears primary credit for the spread of Christianity beyond the Jewish community.

    Since Jesus healed Peter’s mother-in-law, it is clear that Peter was either married or widowed. There is no basis for claiming that Peter was homosexual. I have no idea how Tex came up with that idea.

    Which of my earlier “controversial” remarks have I failed to support?

  107. “Pro-choice” is stupid because women who do not have abortions choose not to have them. They are pro-choice also. They simply make a consistent choice on the side of life vs the alternative.

    Both “pro-choice” and “pro-life” are labels with more spin than substance. Rutherford makes a good point about a decision NOT to have an abortion being a “choice” – although “pro-life” forces would make that choice mandatory.

    The label “anti-abortion” as a substitute for “pro-life” seems accurate to me. The term “pro-abortion” is a slander on most pro-choice people, including me. Most of us wish to reduce the number of abortions, not cheer for them. Unfortunately, most “pro-life” forces fight the very measures that would reduce abortions, like actual sex education and easy access to contraception.

    And ironically, a majority of “pro-life” people are found within a political party that all too often cheers for war and favors capital punishment, and which is stingy with resources for children who are already born.

  108. It is more likely that Luke heard the story some time later, either from Paul himself or from other sources besides Paul, or both. So it is likely that the entire story of Paul’s conversion originates with Paul and from no other source.

    Graychin, you continue to throw up chaff. That answer you gave was almost meaningless. You make generalized statements without support.

    So you think Paul the Zealot was marching himself down the road to Damascus to kill the infidels by himself, hey?

    See, again your argument falls short because is that nagging problem with many, many eye witnesses – including the ones to witness “the falling of the scales from the eyes”. Paul was not alone, and in fact the crowd with Paul during the conversation was terrified. Again, I show you corroborating evidence and you show what? Your opinion about some hokum about he was converted before or after? It’s irrelevant – further, you don’t even mention why it is relevant.

    To the uninformed, reading your answer it would appear that Peter and Paul disagreed about the message of Christ. Quite the contrary:

    For God, who was at work in the ministry of Peter as an apostle to the Jews, was also at work in my ministry as an apostle to the Gentiles. James, Peter and John, those reputed to be pillars, gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship when they recognized the grace given to me. They agreed that we should go to the Gentiles, and they to the Jews. All they asked was that we should continue to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do.

    I could provide a hundred other examples.

    Read further, and you can clearly see that Paul also wins the argument with Peter about the association with Gentiles – amazing that Paul, the homosexual and liar as Graychin attests, would be allowed in front of the pillars of the Christian community with disciples who walked with Christ before and after the resurrection to rebuke Peter and have it stand.

    And being that Paul was executed soon thereafter, not one person ever corrected what Paul had written and it made it into Bible with the approval of 1st Century Church elders. That is what you are asking us to believe.

    Graychin, you’re simply denying almost the entire New Testament. There is no need to argue further because you’re an uninformed fool. You try to confuse the issue with your opinions, but that requires proof.

    I stipulate as much about Luke to make you feel better.

    I guarantee if we were to carry the conversation further, even about Jesus, you would deny the resurrection in some capacity too. Jesus would be a good man, or some other baloney.

    I think God would have me say to you, “Satan, I rebuke you in the Lord’s name.”

    You sound like the “scholars” on the History Channel.

  109. Like the “patriot” act? Warrantless eavesdropping? Detention without charges? Suspension of Miranda warnings? Is that the kind of “limited government” in which you believe? Or do you just believe in “limited government” for multinational corporations?

    All still going on under and previously supported by (D)’s

    Unfortunately, most “pro-life” forces fight the very measures that would reduce abortions, like actual sex education and easy access to contraception.

    That is one of the most intellectually vacant comments I’ve ever seen

  110. Alfie,

    That is one of the most intellectually vacant comments I’ve ever seen

    Which one of Graychin’s comments are not vacant? He’s a windbag of contradictory thought. Want an example? This poses as answer to our questions from above:

    Paul speaks frequently of his revelations from God. In these revelations, Paul received information that Jesus himself apparently denied to his disciples during his time on earth.

    Paul’s message pretty much parallels Peter’s message, except that Peter’s message was spread to the Jews.

    Want another?

    And ironically, a majority of “pro-life” people are found within a political party that all too often cheers for war and favors capital punishment, and which is stingy with resources for children who are already born.

    Graychin would like you to believe that the humane execution of a serial killer or some other insidious crime (by the way, also commanded) and the slaughter of an unborn child are basically one and the same. How’s that for vacant?

    As far as stingy with the resources for the “already born”, I challenged Graychin long ago to meet me at a mend crisis pregnancy center where I volunteered for a time to observe how wrong he was about stingy.

    A place where toys, diapers, food pantries, baby and mother clothes are provided for free without government intervention – mostly from the generosity of evil church folk and those like Rabbit who find abortion and abomination. The center has one paid staff member – the rest of the funds go to “already born” child care.

    Needless to say, Graychin never showed – but he does continue to mouth the same meme. The man is a walking, talking vacuum. 🙂

  111. Where do we find the testimony of all the supposed witnesses to Paul’s conversion? Did they see what he saw?

    I have never called Paul a liar. Why do you continue to argue with statements I did not make or even imply?

    I believe that Paul experienced something on the road to Damascus. I have no reason to believe that he was anything but truthful in describing it. He may well have had companions who watched him experience his conversion, but it’s fairly certain that Luke was not among them

    All that I have been saying (which has made you go so ballistic) is that the only record of Paul’s conversion comes by way of Paul. Why is that such a threat to you?

  112. Extortion … kidnapping …

    Rutherford, to be honest, you’re picking this stuff out by selectively reading into single sentences as if that explains the full of a person’s theology, and then extrapolating that to religion as a whole.

    Sort of an absurd way to look at the thing, I think.

    You already know that there is more to religion than “Sign up if you ever want to see your dead relatives again.”

    You’re better than this kind of soundbite-thinking.

  113. Well, Wickle, of course I know religion doesn’t simply distill to extortion and kidnapping but can’t you see this element exists and can easily be a turnoff to those who are exposed to it?

  114. Good grief. How many of these deceived demagogue’s posts do I have to refute?

    I have never called Paul a liar. Why do you continue to argue with statements I did not make or even imply?

    For the record Jack Sr. record. If this isn’t implying the man a deceived liar, I don’t know what is… 🙄

    I’m not a big fan of the Christianity of Paul, although he is the real Founding Father of Christianity as we know it today. He was an odd character – one of those guys who swings from one extreme to the other overnight. First he was a violent persecutor of Christianity, then its most influential promoter, surpassing even Jesus in that regard. Paul was like a devout Marxist who becomes a raging anti-Communist, or Malcom X who went from being a criminal to his version of a spiritual leader. (Insert obvious joke about evangelists here. Or about Malcom X. Or about Obama or Nancy Pelosi – whatever.)

    I suspect that Paul was one of those self-loathing gays that we were talking about – celibate himself as far as we know, but preaching to others about the evils of homosexuality in particular, and not very approving of sex in general. In many ways he turns the teaching of Jesus on its head.

    ———————

    Where do we find the testimony of all the supposed witnesses to Paul’s conversion? Did they see what he saw?

    I thought you the Bible Scholar Jack? Try Acts 9

    As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”

    “Who are you, Lord?” Saul asked.

    “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,” he replied. “Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”

    The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone. Saul got up from the ground, but when he opened his eyes he could see nothing. So they led him by the hand into Damascus. For three days he was blind, and did not eat or drink anything.

    In Damascus there was a disciple named Ananias. The Lord called to him in a vision, “Ananias!” “Yes, Lord,” he answered.

    The Lord told him, “Go to the house of Judas on Straight Street and ask for a man from Tarsus named Saul, for he is praying. In a vision he has seen a man named Ananias come and place his hands on him to restore his sight.”

    Lord,” Ananias answered, “I have heard many reports about this man and all the harm he has done to your saints in Jerusalem. And he has come here with authority from the chief priests to arrest all who call on your name.”

    But the Lord said to Ananias, “Go! This man is my chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel. I will show him how much he must suffer for my name.”

    Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord—Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here—has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” Immediately, something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he could see again. He got up and was baptized, and after taking some food, he regained his strength?

    Yes, there were witnesses, yes Paul was ordained by Jesus. If you imply Paul was simply making this up, or dreaming it up, you are implying Paul a liar throughout his entire testimony and witness. Every apostle from the New Testament validates the authority of Paul, including those of the Greeks.

    If you wish to discount it, fine. If you want to discard it, that’s fine too.. That is your choice. But you’re a farce if you call yourself a believer. Like I’ve said, you vacillate between deceit and arrogance, but always still played as the fool.

    We’ve got 2,000 years of the historical record, eye witness testimony, church fathers who translated it to hundreds of languages from the original Greek, a movement that founded Western Civilization, literally split time, and I’m debating this with some old bohunk from Eucha that knows better.

    I must be out of my mind to bother. There’s that twisted hope sometime the light bulb comes on for the bohunk.. 😈

  115. Good Lawd…the utterly depraved mind is now having reading problems too. I never gave thought maybe it’s just the presbyopia that set in many years ago…

    The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone.

    and

    Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord—Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here—has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit.”

  116. I don’t mean to be “e” rude but can I say to this:

    Well, Wickle, of course I know religion doesn’t simply distill to extortion and kidnapping but can’t you see this element exists and can easily be a turnoff to those who are exposed to it?

    Isn’t that a contradiction of sorts? I’d also offer that someone being turned off from any religion isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Cuts down on false faith and zealousness.

  117. But Tex, you’re going in circles. All that originates with Paul’s account of the story.

    So Luke just wrote what Paul told him? Wow. I wasn’t aware he had so little credibility as to not take his confirmation any farther. I certainly wish I’d had the benefit of your knowledge before I took his word for it

  118. pfffft….

    But Tex, you’re going in circles. All that originates with Paul’s account of the story.

    I have but one simple question left Mr. Pragmatist. Why are you taking Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John’s account of the Gospel then?

    I have no idea why you to cowardly to admit to the most obvious – you don’t believe any of it.

    This must be some game with you. One that serves no apparent purpose but to pass the day in Bohunk, OK.

  119. Hey BiC,

    I need legal counsel. What is the legal term for evasive witness (besides liar, fraud, charlatan, flimflam)? 🙂

    You know, a witness that parses words, plays semantic games, avoids direct questions. Kind of like:

    It depends on what the word is, is type folk?

  120. Isn’t that a contradiction of sorts? I’d also offer that someone being turned off from any religion isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Cuts down on false faith and zealousness.

    Alfie, I don’t see the contradiction, One aspect of an experience can ruin the totality of the experience for you. I don’t find that odd at all.

    As for your second comment, I fully agree. Folks who are turned off by religion, shouldn’t be religious. It’s better for them and for the institution as a whole.

  121. Sorry to detour from the Paul, Peter, Jesus, Luke thread but I have a really stupid question for which I’d like a serious answer.

    The first man was Adam. Eve was born of Adam’s rib. Eve was the first known “sinner”. Why then did it take God from that moment all the way to Jesus’s time to choose to sacrifice his only son? For example, why didn’t God, the minute Eve sinned, impregnate the very next woman that came along and then sacrifice that son? Why the centuries long wait?

  122. It’s is a mystery Rutherford and not a stupid question in the least. I wish I could answer it, but I can’t. Maybe BiC would take a stab at it – that question is beyond my understanding. But the requirement for a “blood” sacrifice for atonement is mentioned immediately with the story of Cain and Abel.

    All Genesis says is that a woman’s seed would crush the head of the serpent, thereby providing the first prophecy of the virgin birth.

    It was probably thousands of years between Adam and Abram (the lineage of Christ). Like Creation, many events between Adam and Abraham are not explained in much detail – I wish they were, for it would make my “job” much easier.

    There are even a few references that confuse all theologians. I have no idea for instance who or what the Nephilim in Genesis 6 were. Commentaries are divided on who exactly the Nephilim really are. No one can make a definite statement and it remains a mystery.

    It’s as if there are some things written we either we can’t understand or were not meant to understand – perhaps at least partially explaining why we call it “faith.”

  123. Seems fitting…

    Cussing in Church

    A Crusty old man walks into the local Lutheran Church and says to the secretary, “I would like to join this damn church.”

    The astonished woman replies, “I beg your pardon, sir. I must have misunderstood you… What did you say?”

    “Listen up, damn it. I said I want to join this damn church!”

    “I’m very sorry sir, but that kind of language is not tolerated in this church.”

    The secretary leaves her desk and goes into the pastor’s study to inform him of her situation. The pastor agrees that the secretary does not have to listen to that foul language.

    They both return to her office, and the pastor asks the old geezer, “Sir, what seems t o be the problem here?”

    “There is no damn problem,” the man says. “I just won $200 million bucks in the damn lottery and I want to join this damn church to get rid of some of this damn money. ”

    “I see,” said the pastor. “And is this bitch giving you a hard time?”

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