23 June 2008

Won't get fooled again?

Are the kids alright?
by Frank Turk

These kids are apparently not reading what Phil and I are writing, and don't really get what happened to their allegedly-religious parents on the right.

Do they not even listen to the music of the revolution? "Meet the New Boss -- same as the old boss"?

UPDATED: Even when I agree with what Dobson says, I can't bring myself to agree with why he says it.







84 comments:

Celestial Fundie said...

Am I a 'Young Evangelical'?

I wear relatively trendy clothes, listen to secular music, feel disatisfied with traditinal ways of 'doing church' and favour mroe government spending on welfare. Do those things make me qualiy as a 'Young Evangelical'?

donsands said...

"I see an entire generation of young people who want a Christianity they can wrap their hands around," said Claiborne, who wears his hair in shoulder-length dreadlocks. "They don't want to just believe stuff. They're saying if you want to know what I believe, then watch how I live."

I'm actually going to hear this young man on Friday in DC.

I'm not really looking forward to it, but, let's say I'm wanting to hear for myself in person what he's all about.

Seems like he doesn't care about doctrine and the Bible as he should, and that's the scary thing.
Not loving God's word, and trying to love and serve Christ.

Drew said...

I was at the conference, and the article does not represent it well, and it definitely doesn't represent Claiborne well.

While some speakers called for greater political involvement, many did not. Shane was clear in stating that he believed that American civil religion is another "gospel," and Obama and all the Dems are just as much a part of it as Bush. When somebody asked him about voting, he started his answer with "if you vote . . ."

Celestial Fundie said...

If I was American I am sure I would vote Republican, but it does make me nervous that so many American Christians seem so uncritically attached to right-wing politics.

I think there is room for a number of different Christian perspectives on politics, much as I think Socialism is utterly wrong and detestable.

God Bless

Matthew

DJP said...

What evidence do you have that the attachment is "uncritical," Matthew?

Celestial Fundie said...

Oh, I just get that impression. I could be wrong.

I just don't see that much critical reflection on political theory among Christian bloggers.

Then again, it may just be that all the blogs I visit are just obsessed with debating Calvinism.

DJP said...

Perhaps. But this is an odd blog to pick to make that comment, since we've had some back-and-forth 'twixt the three of us, over the last month.

Celestial Fundie said...

I guess Drew's comment brought it out of me.

Drew said...

Although it is not the case on this blog, in the popular "media" evangelical and republican have become nearly synonymous.

That's why this article is so surprised by "young evangelicals" like they are something new. There have been non-republican evangelicals for some time (well, around 2000 years, give or take), but they are a complete surprises to those who only know of Christian Coalition and Moral Majority "evangelicals."

Frank Turk said...

teresita --

um, I think the Catholic Catechism rules out that category. You should review its opinion about the Scriptures and about salvation before you get too far in your reasoning.

wfseube said...

It's amazing (well, not really) the kind of positive press that Christians get when they're pursuing the same liberal political goals that they support. But when a Christian is caught supporting politically incorrect objectives such as elimination of abortion or homosexual marriage, we are portrayed as Satan on earth.

Personally, I use this kind of thing as an anti-barometer. If Christians are getting positive press, chances are they're doing something wrong.

(What, cynical? Me?)

Rick Frueh said...

Politics is compromise, it cannot be done in moderation. Like a snake, its head must be cut off from the church for its fangs dig deeply, and even unnoticed, into the gospel core of our calling.

It is a well meaning and well intentioned attempt at moral legislative change, but in the end it is spiritually duplicitous. With the article referenced, are we going to argue political topics? Our political issues are Biblical - yours are not.

Let us see clearly that every Biblical issue is dealt with fully within the calling of the church and the disipleship of Christ's followers. Let the aniti-christ system continue to provide a redundant mirage that is full of sound and fury...signifying nothing.

Daryl said...

"Let the aniti-christ system continue to provide a redundant mirage that is full of sound and fury...signifying nothing."

Ummm...Paul didn't think so...

Romans 13:1-4

"there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God.
2Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves.

3For rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same;

4for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil. "

IronWill said...

I just don't see that much critical reflection on political theory among Christian bloggers.

I'm not sure why that's a bad thing. Christianity isn't about politics. Christianity is about the Gospel. As much as the right wing conservatives and the left wing liberals and the young evangelicals like to confuse the Gospel and politics, they're putting their faith in the wrong place. I could care less about political theory on my own blog, what I am concerned with is Christian culture, particularly that of American Christian culture. Politics will not spread the Gospel, and the Gospel will not further politics. Since that's the case, I don't make it a big deal. I think that too often my generation...the younger generation...gets far too caught up in the idea of a social gospel or something similar, or the concept that politics will somehow mete out social justice. Ain't gonna happen.

Solameanie said...

Isn't it interesting that this group of "young evangelicals" is always noted for its tattoos, dreadlocks and patchy beards rather for any strong theological standard. And that's by the secular press.

Let's all die on the hill of self-expression instead of expressing and identifying with Christ.

Okay, that's my snark for the day.

Rick Frueh said...

Daryl - are you suggesting that if God ordains the concept of human government, that implies the church should be a part of that? Does that mean the church should have partcipated in Hitler's government as an agent for moral change?

The word I used "antichrist" was intended to illuminate the pluralistic nature of the American government which accepts all religions as equally legitimate. The verses you cite do not suggest participation, they suggest obedience where it does not conflict with God's commands. Democracy was invented by the humanistic Greeks in order to elevate the huamn species and his divine-like importance.

What you have basically is the carnal whims ($) of man governing himself.

Mike Riccardi said...

Rick,

It sounds like you're not a fan of the freedom of religion. Is that right? Do you think that a biblical government should require people to be Christians?

Just wondering.

DJP said...

Me, I think Rick already tried his "Hide me! Hide me!" philosophy last week, and it got thumped.

Rick Frueh said...

"It sounds like you're not a fan of the freedom of religion."

God isn't a fan of either. China has the fastest growing evangelical community while America has a stagnant compromising one. The freedom about which God is concerned is in Christ, not Washington.

Washington doesn't espouse Christianity and allows freedom of religion, they espouse them all as equal. Pluralism. Kinda like a governmental Mason's oragnization.

David Cho said...

Frank, what do you mean by "Meet the New Boss."?

Nowhere in the article I see anything about this new breed of Evangelicals aligning themselves with "the new boss," as you try to paint. Who exactly is the new boss unless you believe moving away from the Republican party equals to a vote for the Democratic Party (which is what hardcore partisans do actually believe).

From the article (emphasis mine)

"If anything, they're becoming more independent in their outlook."

Most favor stricter laws to protect the environment, for example, an issue not typically associated with Republican platforms, yet remain conservative on issues like opposition to abortion and support for the death penalty.

Both McCain and Obama will be hard pressed to attract voters like Tonya Grant, a 23-year-old Bible college student from New Jersey, who said she voted for Bush in 2004.

"It seems like he (McCain) is playing the evangelical Jesus card," she said. But she's not sold on Obama either, and she doesn't favor his health-care reform proposals.

She does not align herself with any political party and is critical of how so many evangelicals supported Bush. "I think a lot of that is apathy and laziness, letting people tell them how to vote," she said.

Mike Riccardi said...

So... you're not going to answer the questions I did ask?

Rick Frueh said...

It sounds like you're not a fan of the freedom of religion. Is that right? I have no opinion.

Do you think that a biblical government should require people to be Christians? No.

Frank Turk said...

Any political solution is "the boss" -- the wrong boss -- for those who are philosophically Christian.

Polycarp said...

The "'Christian' Left" is nothing new either--just humanism dressed up in new clothes. From the Gnostics to the so-called Age of "enlightenment," the broad road has been continually paved with new layers of heresy: unitarianism, transcendentalism, "'new' theology", "progressive Orthodoxy," ...anything but Truth.

PS: Perhaps Shane can partner with Nintendo to bring the youth of today "Virtual Christian"..now that's something they can "get their hands around"

donsands said...

"A new president isn't going to help America. Lower gas prices isn't going to help America. Becoming more moral isn't going to help America.

America needs the Gospel, just as any nation does, just as any person does". paraphrased from Pastor MacArthur on 'Grace To You' today. Pretty good message, if any body wants to check it out. This pastor can preach.

Chris Hemmelman said...

Oh the humor in all of this...Frank's point, if I've read him correctly, is that the next generation is no different than their parents, its just they've substituted the politics of the "Religious Right" for the politics of "independent"(whatever that is supposed to mean). But the fact remains, they are STILL NEGLECTING THE GOSPEL, and substituting it for a political agenda.

The funny thing to me is I don't see too many of these "yong evangelicals" embracing the politics of small, limited government. The argument now is not how to get government out of our lives, its how best to managage it and harness its power for such and such agenda. Any movement, "Christian" or otherwise, that calls for MORE government is rightly labeled "leftist".

Drew said...

Chris: this is not true, at least in the case of Claiborn. He, like most anabaptists, wants Christians to have no part of government.

The Doulos said...

As a "non-young evangelical", I find this not terribly interesting or surprising. I have no idea who Mr Claiborne is or what specifically was said or not said at this event, etc. But what I see and hear in the news article's quotes from this new generation of flip-flop wearing, tatted and soul-patched gen XYZers sound to be simply the logical outcomes of the new wave of emergent/liberal leaders they largely are listening to. In place of the unthinking and doctrinally deficit political religion of their parents, which leaned right, they are likewise following the new improved version of the same. Which has a decidely leftist leaning. As others have stated here, either way the Gospel of Christ is being marginalized.

Phil Johnson said...

Drew: "this is not true, at least in the case of Claiborn. He, like most anabaptists, wants Christians to have no part of government."

No, Chris was exactly right. Claiborne might have an anabaptist view of government (or an anarchist's contempt for it--or even a Marxist's faux-contempt for it), but he has still replaced the true gospel message of sin and redemption with a political message, involving the redistribution of wealth and the social empowerment of politically and economically disadvantaged people.

In fact,he's one of the prime offenders in the promotion of the follies being pointed out here.

Drew said...

Shane calls for Christians to redistribute their own wealth, voluntarily. While this is "political," it is also consistent with the gospel.

Chris criticized young evangelicals for not embracing small government. I guess he is technically accurate, because many of us embrace no government at all! Many (even most) of us do NOT call for "more government" at all.

And until you show me where he has replaced sin and redemption with something else, I am not going to believe it just because you say otherwise.

Celestial Fundie said...

Chris, do you think those who advocate 'big government' are contradicting Christian principles or do you think they are simply misguided politically?

Celestial Fundie said...

Solameanie, do you think dreadlocks, tattoos and patchy beards are unacceptable for Christians?

Daryl said...

"Shane calls for Christians to redistribute their own wealth, voluntarily. While this is "political," it is also consistent with the gospel."

To be accurate...where this is described in the Bible it involves believers 'having all things in common' among themselves. I think the church in Acts understood that we are to take care of our family but that taking on the responsibility of feeding the poor at large as a mission, would necessarily water down the gospel.

Not that feeding the poor is a bad thing, it is a good, even great thing, but when that becomes the mission of the church or even a responsibility of the church folk, I think it leads to problems. Witness the social gospel movement and the current EC movement.

Daryl said...

"Solameanie, do you think dreadlocks, tattoos and patchy beards are unacceptable for Christians?"

That question would constitute an exercise in missing the point methinks Mr. C-fundie.

IronWill said...

Chris, do you think those who advocate 'big government' are contradicting Christian principles or do you think they are simply misguided politically?

I'm not Chris, but I would say that they are misguided politically, and possibly contradicting Christian principles in some instances, depending on what they favor politically.

-Will

wfseube said...

Drew wrote: Shane calls for Christians to redistribute their own wealth, voluntarily. While this is "political," it is also consistent with the gospel.

Oh really? What part of the Gospel says that we must redistribute our wealth? Last I checked the Gospel had nothing to do with belongings and wealth - the Gospel message is "We are all sinners and in need of salvation, and Jesus Christ is the Savior that provides that salvation." Social gospel adherents may have stretched and morphed the Gospel to say that, but THE Gospel certainly doesn't have anything to do with wealth redistribution.

Mike Riccardi said...

Looks like that's what they're after, Daryl.

IronWill said...

Oh really? What part of the Gospel says that we must redistribute our wealth? Last I checked the Gospel had nothing to do with belongings and wealth - the Gospel message is "We are all sinners and in need of salvation, and Jesus Christ is the Savior that provides that salvation." Social gospel adherents may have stretched and morphed the Gospel to say that, but THE Gospel certainly doesn't have anything to do with wealth redistribution.

In this instance, and probably many others, emergents have taken descriptive passages from the Bible(notably the book of Acts where it talks about believers holding all things in common) and have made them prescriptive. In other words, it's faulty Biblical interpretation.

a_simple_bloggTRotter said...

Is it rude to ask if "young evangelicals" wear shoes in the house?


I'm just asking

Solameanie said...

C-fundie..

I have no desire to derail the thread with a discussion of tats and studs. I probably should have kept my mouth shut. If I answer your question the way I'd like to answer it, that would derail the thread indeed and possibly result in an explosion. Stuff like this can bring out my caustic side pretty easily.

In a nutshell, no, I don't think evangelicals doing these things will keep them out of heaven. But I don't approve of it, and think it's very unwise.

That's about as polite and non-caustic as I can be on the subject. Maybe one day I'll post on my own blog about it and nuke the hornet's nest.

But not here.

Drew said...


Last I checked the Gospel had nothing to do with belongings and wealth


Really? Read Luke and tell me if you can stand by that statement.

Jesus talked more about money than heaven and hell combined.

I'm not saying that it's the whole thing. But I am saying that if you call Jesus "Lord," it means he is Lord. Not money, not possessions, not power.

Becoming a Christian is more than just a belief or an intellectual assent (although it certainly isn't less than that). It leads to changed lives. And changed lives means changed earning/spending/saving/giving habits, and that means wealth re-distribution.

a_simple_bloggTRotter said...

Drew,


I had a post for your last comment, but I think it as a little harsh.

Here is a part, that contains the germ of my question to you:

I have to wonder if seeking “Social Justice” ( and I do not pretend to have a clue of what it means to those who bat the term around as if they know what it means) has elements of unbelief in it in that sneaky way that some “humility” rots with arrogance and defiance.



Not to be rude, but Its sort of hard to see the computer monitor right now because there are so many red flags from your comment, for me, anyway.

a_simple_bloggTRotter said...

Ironwill,

Right on.

greglong said...

drew said:

[QUOTE]
Shane calls for Christians to redistribute their own wealth, voluntarily. While this is "political," it is also consistent with the gospel.

Chris criticized young evangelicals for not embracing small government. I guess he is technically accurate, because many of us embrace no government at all! Many (even most) of us do NOT call for "more government" at all.

And until you show me where he has replaced sin and redemption with something else, I am not going to believe it just because you say otherwise.
[/QUOTE]

Shane Claiborne said:

I learned such a narrow lense of Scripture growing up; this idea that it's all about what we believe. And yet we're not to make believers but disciples. Tony always says, "I wish it was a doctrine test, that we got to the gates of heaven and Jesus said to us, 'Virgin birth: Agree, Disagree, Strongly Disagree.'"

[And we'd say], "We'e in! We're in! That's easy! That's easy!"

And yet I think the question is going to be actually--it says all the nations are before him--and He says, "When I was hungry, did you feed me? When I was thirsty, did you give me something to drink? Did you visit me in prison and welcome me into your home when I was homeless?"

It's those things in which we embody God's love.

[...]

Once we're brought to life, we're meant to whisper that same thing to the world--that you are loved; you are beloved of God.


I think that's a false dichotomy--it's not works instead of belief, but faith that is evidenced by works (Eph. 2:8-10).

Listen to An Evening with Shane Claiborne. It's all about helping others just like Mother Teresa did; there is little to nothing about the Gospel. It's all about the life of Christ; there is little to nothing about his death.

Frank Turk said...

All this from two copped lines from a song by Pete Townsend?


YYYYEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!

Solameanie said...

Frank,

Quote "White Rabbit" from Jefferson Airplane and see what hairballs come up in the meta. ;O

Frank Turk said...

Go ask Alice.

When she's ten feet tall.

Drew said...

Simple,

I find it hard to believe that the idea that our conversions should extend to our behavior sets off red flags.

Is it ok for fornicaters to remain fornicators after their "conversion?" Of course not! If they remain that way, than we would say that they are false converts, right?

It is the same way for idolaters. If you hold on to your money when the call of God is clearly to share the resources God has given you, than you are making an idol out of money.

Faith comes first, but works follow shortly after. They do not cause salvation, but they are a result of it.

Because of that, Jesus, in Matthew 25 can use "works" as a test of salvation, rather than virgin birth, etc.

donsands said...

"All this from two copped lines from a song by Pete Townsend?"

I'd call that a bargain.
Not that it's the best you've ever had though.

IronWill said...

Becoming a Christian is more than just a belief or an intellectual assent (although it certainly isn't less than that). It leads to changed lives. And changed lives means changed earning/spending/saving/giving habits, and that means wealth re-distribution.

Nonsense, the Bible teaches no such thing, and you haven't produced any Scripture to support this.

a_simple_bloggTRotter said...

Drew,

(I typed this a few times, but it still sounds grouchy. I don't know...maybe I need to ditch the corncob pipe or something.)


Being faithful with your finances is not the issue I was reading into your comment. I am sorry if I was in error. There is no doubt that regeneration produces a change that always translates into practice.

What I cannot stomach is equating stewardship ( or, in obedience and gratitude, my giving , then God using His money that He has blessed me with the for the furthering of His kingdom) with Socialistic blathering.

Also, please, do not misunderstand me, this is not a question of works, or better, fruit.

If your point is that stewardship is one of the many ways we show ourselves to be believers ( See 1 John for a few more , by the way), then I have no problem with your comment and I will wash my pick-up with all those red flags.

However, if this is a way to prop up a pomo “Social Justice“ slant , then it does indeed matter your confession about the Virgin Birth AND your living out the fruit of the gospel , i.e., stewardship , fellowship, holiness, and evangelism. Because, truth matters in all contexts.

Now, If I read it wrong, I do apologize. But, if “wealth re-distribution” means anything other than being faithful with all that we are given in Christ (including our time, and the truth of the word of God), then I still take issue.

Rick Frueh said...

"Come on ye childhood heroes!
Won't you rise up from the pages of your comic-books
your super crooks
and show us all the way.
Well! Make your will and testament. Won't you?
Join your local government.
We'll have Superman for president
let Robin save the day."

Extra credit for the author.

Drew said...

Simple,

If Christians start living faithfully, and bearing fruit, then they will create communities of justice.

It's not about lobbying the government, or forcing anybody to do anything. It's just what happens when God saves people. They live generously, according to God's ways, and God brings greater justice.

Will said...

I blame Rob Bell for this.

Vote Pro Life. Period.

Mike Riccardi said...

LOL!

I love it!

IronWill said...

If Christians start living faithfully, and bearing fruit, then they will create communities of justice.

It's not about lobbying the government, or forcing anybody to do anything. It's just what happens when God saves people. They live generously, according to God's ways, and God brings greater justice.


I have no idea what this means, or what you have derived it from Biblically. Don't just toss out some fancy rhetoric, add some substance to explain what you mean, and back it up with Scripture.

Drew said...

What part did you not understand?

Mike Riccardi said...

Speaking generously, I think what Drew's trying to say is that true conversion brings good works.

That is, of course, true. But where I think, Drew, you're taking a leap too far is presupposing that at least some those good works will necessarily be in the realm of "society" and "community" and that they will bring external reform even to unbelievers and to an evil world system.

We can be confident that Christians are to have changed lives and give generously and do good to all people, especially to those of the household of faith. But what we can't assume is that takes the form of political involvement, social action (as the term is being used), and societal reform from the outside in.

a_simple_bloggTRotter said...

See, there go those red flags again.


" They live generously, according to God's ways, and God brings greater justice."

Maybe I am missing something.

The gospel is not about justice, it is about the Grace of the infinitely holy God of the universe extended to those (me being chief), who deserve nothing but wrath and hell ( the eternal nature of which tells much, of the offence).

There is atonement, in Christ becaues of the cross I am reconciled to the Father.

There is propitiation, the wrath of God satisfied, and there is substitution, because “In my place, condemned He ( Jesus) Stood”.

Communities, ( pronounced, The Local Church) living "generously" is good, if not in the Brian McLaren (sp?) way but rather sharing the wealth of grace and hope in Christ Jesus in the gospel. And living sacrificially, giving, and going, and holding white-knuckled and with their last breath to the un-changing truth of the word.

I just have to say that I am at a loss as to what “and God brings greater justice." means. To who(m)?
The body? Is that not in Christ? To the unbelieving world? Ummmm, I do not get it. Common Grace? More than is in providence already? Again, what?

If you are suggesting that there is yet greater justice ( again, whatever that means) beyond Christ, then we have an even bigger issue here.

a_simple_bloggTRotter said...

Mike Riccardi,

Maybe you are correct.
Still, I am kinda leaning Ironwill' direction at the moment. Maybe Drew can put some meat on that last statement's bones.

Drew said...

by "greater justice," I mean justice where there was none before.

I find it hard to hear that the gospel is not about justice.
How do you reconcile this viewpoint with Matthew 12:18 (to say nothing of God's concern for justice repeated over and over in the Old Testament)?

As for the recipients of that justice, I also believe that it should be "for the nations." Do you believe that people should be treated unjustly because they do not believe?

As I have repeatedly said. This is not to be accomplished through government (maybe, at best, governments can play a part, but we cannot put any trust/hope in them).

I know that some don't like the term "social justice" or "social action," but they seem to be the best terms to describe just action amongst people (ie "society").

IronWill said...

I find it hard to hear that the gospel is not about justice.
How do you reconcile this viewpoint with Matthew 12:18 (to say nothing of God's concern for justice repeated over and over in the Old Testament)?


Mat 12:18 "BEHOLD! MY SERVANT WHOM I HAVE CHOSEN, MY BELOVED IN WHOM MY SOUL IS WELL PLEASED! I WILL PUT MY SPIRIT UPON HIM, AND HE WILL DECLARE JUSTICE TO THE GENTILES.


Not sure what connection you're drawing on here. Perhaps you can explain further? I'm not getting enough of an explanation from you to make a real conclusion based on whatever facts or beliefs you're holding to here.

Frank Turk said...

Frueh:

Jethro Tull lyrics are passe, dude. There are no "red letter" Christians who could credibly quote Tull. They have better things to do -- like ministry.

Drew said...

This verse claims that Christ was to declare justice to the gentiles.

Why would Christ waste his time declaring something other than the gospel?

Seems to me that if he was chosen to proclaim justice, than justice is part of the Gospel.

IronWill said...

This verse claims that Christ was to declare justice to the gentiles.

Why would Christ waste his time declaring something other than the gospel?

Seems to me that if he was chosen to proclaim justice, than justice is part of the Gospel.


The Justice that he was declaring to the Gentiles was the Gospel. Not "a part of the Gospel." This passage is dealing with the fact that the Gospel message was to the Gentiles as well as the Jews. It has nothing to do with social justice or any other such concept.

Drew said...

Right. Justice is not foreign to the Gospel. Christ's justice IS Gospel.

IronWill said...

Right. Justice is not foreign to the Gospel. Christ's justice IS Gospel.

I'm afraid you've got that backwards. Christ's Gospel is Justice. There's no concept of social justice in that passage, unless you count the idea that the Gospel was for the Gentile as well as the Jew. It has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with the concept of redistribution of wealth. It has nothing to do with the emergent understanding of Social Justice. It's about the Gospel.

Drew said...

I do not understand how justice can be anything BUT social justice. What is individual justice? Justice, by definition involves more than one party.

When Justice is established, by God, through Christ, people are changed.

Part of that change is that people stop being greedy, and start being generous. As God changes people's lives, wealth gets redistributed.

Whether you say Christ's justice is Gospel, or Gospel is Christ's justice is fine with me.

a_simple_bloggTRotter said...

The word kree'-sis is probably best translated “judgment”.

So, yeah, if your interested in “social judgment”, sure, I guess.

Judgment is sure after all.

Still, I don’t get how its sounds like you are interested in the poor but are not mentioning proclaiming Jesus over “justice” (pronounced “judgment”).

As for all nations, the gospel, is to be proclaimed to all nations.

Right?

Carlo said...

Frank: Even when I agree with what Dobson says, I can't bring myself to agree with why he says it.

What is it that you can't bring yourself to agree why he said what he said?

Mesa Mike said...

Just what does it mean to "declare justice"? Is it really something anybody wants?

I don't want Yeshua's justice. I want His mercy.

a_simple_bloggTRotter said...

I am reading over my posts and I believe I need to be clear here: The idea of justice is not bad to me at all. I believe there is great good that is done by believer living their lives in a way that honors God.

I also made a hasty post in regard to Matthew 12:18. I am going to take time and pray and read on this scripture because fat and lose in not a way to treat God’s word.

I am also still reading an adversarial tone in my posts that aught not to be there. I am sorry about this and will try to do better editing and post a little slower.

Drew, I have enjoyed the exchange today. God bless.

Susan said...

Drew said: "I find it hard to hear that the gospel is not about justice."

Simple is right, Drew. The gospel has nothing to do with justice. It has to do with God's MERCY and GRACE: His mercy toward forgiving our sins and His grace to give us eternal life in Christ. RC Sproul Sr. once cautioned his listeners not to ask for justice because, he said, "You just might get it." For all who have sinned and fallen short of God's glory, God's justice requires that they die and suffer his eternal wrath. Yet because of God's mercy and grace, repentant believers in Christ have their sin removed by Christ's atonement and receive Christ's righteousness in its stead. THAT'S the gospel.

As for wealth redistribution...aside from feeling slightly unsettled by its socialistic overtones, I still wouldn't call that JUSTICE. I'd call that LOVE. The disciples in Acts 4:32-35 were examples of such love. Such love springs from knowing Christ, yes, but it is a RESULT of their conversion, not the gospel itself nor part of it.

Drew said...

I am getting tired, so this will be my last comment of the night, but I am ok with either word choice. Justice involves judgment, right?

I don't know where you got the idea that I wasn't into proclaiming Jesus, but it is not correct.

Jesus is the source of justice, of good news for the poor, freedom for captives, jubilee--any good news comes through Christ. I preach repentance because none of these things can be established by human efforts--they only come by the grace of God in Jesus Christ.

I'll check back tomorrow morning.

a_simple_bloggTRotter said...

not fat..."Fast and lose"

IronWill said...

I do not understand how justice can be anything BUT social justice. What is individual justice? Justice, by definition involves more than one party.

Hmmm? I'm sorry, what's that? Break it down, and add some substance.

When Justice is established, by God, through Christ, people are changed.
Justice or the Gospel? Those terms are not interchangeable.


Part of that change is that people stop being greedy, and start being generous. As God changes people's lives, wealth gets redistributed.
I don't recall reading anywhere in Scripture that God redistributes people's wealth all over the place willy-nilly as part of the fruit of Salvation. Lydia, for example, was a wealthy woman. She used her money for certain things to advance the Gospel(not Justice) yes, but it was her money, and she had the power to do with it as she wished. The Apostle Peter said something to that effect to Priscilla and Aquilla. They didn't have to sell all their goods and give it to the church. Their goods were theirs to do with as they wished. Scripture never requires, and never insinuates, that we give away our goods as part of being Christians, or that it's a fruit of Salvation to do so. This is a concept not found in Scripture except in a couple of descriptive passages. It's never prescriptive of the Christian life, and never given to us as an example of what we should do. You're still not backing up your claims with Scripture.

Whether you say Christ's justice is Gospel, or Gospel is Christ's justice is fine with me.
No, sorry, a cow may be a mammal, but it is not a horse. The Gospel of Christ being preached to all nations is Justice, but Justice is not a part of the Gospel. You're coming with unscriptural ideas from out of nowhere. If you're going to continue to debate this, please back up your ideas with Scripture.

I also have to agree with Blogtrotter here, the word translated justice in the translation I used is probably better translated judgment.

Susan said...

Sorry, Simple--did you mean "fast and loose"?

a_simple_bloggTRotter said...

ummm, yeah, its late here too.

( wow, I get a nickname, and its "simple". not bloggtrotter, not, sb, but "simple". sigh)

Will said...

If we take human life seriously, we have to vote pro life. If we say that all men are created equal, we need to say that counts everyone. Once we start to make exceptions (they are too black, too white, too tall, too small, too smart too dumb, etc) then holocaust follows. We saw this in WWII; we saw this in the Antebellum south. We see it today with the unborn.

Say what you want about Dobson, he understands one thing: Christians are called to protect the weak against the bully. The unborn are getting chopped up by the billion dollar abortion industry and by one entire political party and we as Christians need to stand up on thier behalf. If we don't we are no better than the so called Christians who helped Hitler keep the trains running on time (straight to auschwitz).

There is a difference between protecting the unborn and enforcing morals. They are on different levels. We can't fix America's moral decay by snappy laws on sodomy or porn. But we can throw abortion doctors in jail when they chop up some little baby that didn't do anything to anyone.

wfseube said...

Drew wrote Really? Read Luke and tell me if you can stand by that statement.

Jesus talked more about money than heaven and hell combined.

I'm not saying that it's the whole thing. But I am saying that if you call Jesus "Lord," it means he is Lord. Not money, not possessions, not power.

Becoming a Christian is more than just a belief or an intellectual assent (although it certainly isn't less than that). It leads to changed lives. And changed lives means changed earning/spending/saving/giving habits, and that means wealth re-distribution.


I am well aware of what's in Luke and in Matthew, Mark, and John as well. Jesus also says that one should gouge out their eye if it should make them sin. Do you have your eyes still? If so, then you are obviously not living by "the gospel". The fact that Jesus uttered a phrase does not make it part of THE Gospel. There are many things Jesus said to make a point and are not necessarily central to why He came (ie. The Gospel).

"changed earning/spending/saving/giving habits ... means wealth re-distribution." Really? Wow, that's a whopper of a stretch there. Now I suppose if you consider giving one's earnings to the church as "wealth redistribution," then I suppose so. But based on your past postings, I don't think that's what you mean.

a_simple_blogtrotter says it well: "if “wealth re-distribution” means anything other than being faithful with all that we are given in Christ (including our time, and the truth of the word of God), then I still take issue."

as does Susan:
"The gospel has nothing to do with justice. It has to do with God's MERCY and GRACE: His mercy toward forgiving our sins and His grace to give us eternal life in Christ." She also hits a home run with this statement: "Such love springs from knowing Christ, yes, but it is a RESULT of their conversion, not the gospel itself nor part of it." Exactly my point.

Thank GOD I am not the recipient of Biblical justice, or my next stop would be the fiery furnace; rather, I am the recipient of God's glorious grace as a result of Jesus' sacrifice. THAT is the Gospel.

Celestial Fundie said...

Rick, that is a Jethro Tull song. Can't remember the song title.

From the 'Thick as a Brick' album.

Rick Frueh said...

Frank gets the prize and since I am not a red letter Christian Ian Anderson's lyrics are sometimes haunting even from an unsaved source.

If Obama was pro-life and anti-gay Dobson would support him no matter how he distorted the Bible. I'm not sure Dobson would have a ministry were it not for those two political fundraisers. Wait till Obama gets elected, It will be a monetary watershed for ministries like FOF!

Like all the conservative radio and television talking heads, a president Obama will provide a raison d'tere for all of them.

“And the world looks just the same
And history ain't changed
'Cause the banners, they are flown in the next war”

Please remember, the words before we won’t get fooled again - “Then I’ll get down on my knees and pray”. It is one thing to realize God’s way, it’s another to walk in it.

Drew said...

This year will be interesting. Obama is spending a ton of money on "Christian" radio ads, and in every other media, money talks. Especially considering the largest Christian Media company is a for- profit enterprise, we may hear some interesting opinions on the subject.

It is interesting to consider whether Obama would get support from Dobson if he were pro-life. I wish we had a chance to find out. Dobson continued to sponsor ralliess that lifted up Rick Santorum even when he was challenged by a pro-life Democrat.

Back to the discussion I was involved in: God's grace and God's justice are not opposed to one another. They come together. Grace is not a canceling of justice, but a fulfilling of it.

As for the association of justice and gospel, I have already provided one. Christ's call, from Isaiah, in Luke 5 is another example of how Gospel looks like justice.

I usually wouldn't use the words as synonyms, to be honest. At one point, a commenter said that they had nothing to do with each other. This is ridiculous, and I pointed it out. Then, iron, you said they were one in the same, so I went with it. Now, you are challenging me to back up YOUR ideas. Make up your mind.

My position is simple. Changed hearts lead to changed lives, which leads to different choices. Yes, Lydia didn't give it all away, but she did give to the church. Zaccheus and the rich young ruler were called to give it all away. I still have money in my savings account, but now that I am a Christian, I approach the poor with an open hand. Rick Warren was called to give away 90% of his wealth. There is a different story for every Christian, but the truth is that when we are made one with Christ, we become his disciples, and that means different behavior.

I don't feel like looking up scriptures for you, but the great commission is a good start. I will add emphasis as I type.

make DISCIPLES of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and teaching them to OBEY ALL that I have commanded you.

Frank Turk said...

I just want to point out that I am always gratified when I can make a post which collects more responses than there were words in the orginal post, including title.