Evangelical christians spreading love


Sometimes I think being an evangelical is hard work. One Rachel Evans died and even before she can be sent off to rest, they have come out guns blazing telling us her unfortunate soul is in hell.

As fellow traveler, Ark, put it, god bless the internet.

If you are like the fellows in that post by Bruce, you need to either change beliefs, or your god or both.

Advertisements

About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

64 thoughts on “Evangelical christians spreading love

  1. john zande says:

    A lovely bunch, those evangelicals. Just saw that they will imprison women for life for having an abortion in Georgia.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. shelldigger says:

    This is the despicable side of x-ianity that towers over the message with a menacing smile.

    Like

  3. Evangelical Christians are largely vermin.

    Like

  4. Barry says:

    Evangelical Christians, my foot! They’re evangelical bibliolatrists – Bible worshipers. A totally different species.

    Liked by 1 person

    • makagutu says:

      They are a special species. We call them evangelical christians so they don’t accuse of committing the no TrueScotsman fallacy; they say they are christians, we take them at their word

      Like

  5. Barry says:

    The Nazis called their movement the National Socialist German Workers’ Party. That really didn’t make them socialists by any stretch of the imagination.

    Like

    • oh they are Christians if you read the bible which is all about control.

      Like

      • Barry says:

        It’s about control if you’re a fundamentalist/evangelical. At the other end of the Christian spectrum it isn’t. There are not prescribed set of beliefs and there is no authority to exert control.

        Like

        • I’m meaning that the Christian god requires control, and requires that its worshippers control others. For instance it requires that people force religion on their families or kill them. And yes, I know that’s in the OT, but JC said that all of those laws are to be followed. WE also have that the bible says that all non-Christians will be murdered by JC for only that reason in the supposed end times. That seems to be about control.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Barry says:

            That’s your understanding. It certainly isn’t mine. Your understanding of Christianity is no different from the fundamentalists who in this country are a tiny minority. Don’t judge Christianity on a subset of it. That would be like observing Stalinist USSR and concluding that is what all Socialist states are like.

            Like

          • we’ve been through this before Barry. Christianity is based on the bible. That’s where the whole thing comes from. That bible supports all of those nasty things that conservatives get from it. And the bible is all about control, not love. Love isn’t when this god wants unbelievers murdered. I’m glad that some Christians have invented a nicer version but they ignore what is there.

            Like

          • Barry says:

            Check your history. Christianity existed for centuries before the Bible was compiled. Christianity is based on the presumed teachings of a first century itinerant sage/ teacher/revolutionary (depending on one’s interpretation). The Bible is an amalgam of Jewish scripture, myths and stories surrounding Jesus, and a selection of writings of some of his early followers.

            Today it is difficult to know how much of the Bible was written with the intent that it be taken literally or to be “true” for all time, but it seems to me that the Bible reflects commonly held beliefs, values and customs of the culture at the time the stories came into being. I fail to understand how beliefs, values, customs or traditions that existed between 2000 and 3000 years ago should apply in any literal sense today.

            Following a literal interpretation of the Bible does not make one a Christian, although I accept many such people do make that claim. If you were to ask me what a Christian is, I would say that it is someone who practices the values ascribed to Jesus, liberally interpreted in the light of current knowledge.

            The problem is that you have bought into the myth that Christians have always considered the Bible to be the word of God and therefore inerrant and must be interpreted literally. In fact it was a conservative/traditionalist (and mostly American) Christian reactionary response to the Enlightenment that has been exported to practically every corner of the world with varying degrees of success. Fortunately it was a late arrival here and has only a small following.

            It is people like Lloyd Geering who have had a far greater influence on Christianity in this country. Geering is held in high esteem and holds our highest civil honour (Order of New Zealand) for to his services to religion.

            The likes of those in the link provided by makagutu make up a very small minority of people who claim to be Christian in this country. Again I accept that the situation might be very different in your part of the world. But please don’t insist that your experience of religion (and Christianity in particular) is more accurate representation of “true” Christianity than mine.

            Liked by 1 person

          • and the bible is made up of all of those jewish stories and claimed sayings of Jesus. In that Jesus has all sorts of contradictory statements, then by your claim, a Christian can be damn near anything. But I’m guessing you only mean the nice fuzzy statements, and ignoring the ones that say abandon your family, etc.

            Christians have picked and choosed their bible from day one, but parts of it are always considered literal, e.g. that nonsense about the resurretion, and if you read the bible, there is little reason to think that most of it was somehow to be considered metaphor, etc. JC is written to consider the OT literal.

            Your Geering made up a version of Christianity, just like you have, Barry. Each Christian makes up their religion and their god in their image. And for all of your admonitions to me, it seems you can’t follow them yourself.

            Like

          • Nan says:

            Just as a interested bystander, your remarks come across as rather snide, clubschadenfreude — which doesn’t seem worthy of you from other input of yours that I’ve seen. Maybe I’m missing something?

            Like

          • what sounds snide? and what is wrong in my statements?

            Like

          • Nan says:

            If you’ve read other comments by Barry, you’d see he’s a fairly moderate Christian. In fact, to some Christians, he would be considered a heretic! So taking this into account, your comments just seemed rather harsh … more like an attack. But I admit, I came into the conversation late and I may be misinterpreting. If so, mea culpa.

            Like

          • As far as I know Barry isn’t a Christian at all. The issues I have with what Barry says are in my reply to him just a few minutes ago. My point is that Christians can call themselves that as they want, and that they can make a case for their vicious Christianity as much as universalists do. To try to ever claim that Christianity is a good thing is wrong since its *all* built on the bible and its horrific stories. It’s just that some people ignore those bits.

            Like

          • Barry says:

            Correction: I’m a Quaker, not a Christian. The example of Christianity as linked to by mak is why I don’t want to be directly associated with the term. That being said, if someone associates my values as being Christian then I’m not going to to disagree any more than someone associating my values with humanism. Ideally they’re the same thing. In the end it’s not what one believes but how one lives that is important. In so many of these arguments, this message seems to get lost.

            Liked by 1 person

          • makagutu says:

            Given the fact that what or how to be a Christian has been at the centre of many church schism, I think Geering is right in trying to find a Christianity that comports with his senses. He doesn’t want to believe absurdities. Just like those famed church fathers tried for example anslem with his argument, Aquinas and all

            Liked by 1 person

          • I agree. Modern Christian shave essentially no choice but to invent something that isn’t as ridiculous.

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            and it seems to me, the Aquinases did a better job than our contemporaries

            Like

          • Barry says:

            Each Christian makes up their religion and their god in their image“. I agree with you entirely on this point which is why I think it unreasonable to make universal claims about all Christians. My original comment of “Evangelical Christians, my foot! They’re evangelical bibliolatrists – Bible worshipers. A totally different species.” was an attempt at hyperbole – something that was used very effectively Jesus. Makagutu’s reply is actually consistent with my point of view, but if we are to be consistent, then we cannot refer to all who claim to be Christians as if they have a common set of beliefs.

            I have a son who is a fundamentalist, and although he claims to “love the sinner, hate the sin” his attitude to the rainbow community means that he is not welcome in my home when we have some of our friends around. No matter what he claims, it is clear that his attitude to them is similar to what mine would be if I knew someone had a “hobby” of torturing animals for fun. I couldn’t help but be antagonistic towards them. He claims he’s a Christian, and he’s correct when he claims history is on his side in that regard – pre Enlightenment. However, time and knowledge do not stand still.

            He claims he’s a Christian, yet I have other friends who also claim to be Christian and hold completely different and incompatible beliefs, even about ones as “fundamental” as a bodily resurrection of Jesus or that he was in any way a supernatural being or God in human form.

            I make no claim of being a Christian, unlike my son or some of my friends, but if I am to choose between who are “true Christians”, I would choose my friends’ version over that of my son. They are very liberal in their interpretation of the Bible and without exception universalists. Unlike my Christian friends, my son refused to attend the gathering outside the local mosque on the Friday following the Christchurch massacre to show solidarity with the Muslim community. He genuinely believes that such action to be sinful!

            My point is that Christians like my friends are more plentiful here than Christians like my son. And to get back to your original comment, control is kind of impractical for believers who are universalists don’t you think?

            Like

          • Believers who are universalists are cherry picking their bible too. In that this is where all of this nonsense started, the stories that were written down to form the bible, In either case, universalists or evangelicals, they all claim to be Christians and they all pick and choose. You pick the Christians you like as true Christians; no surprise there at all. But they are all Christians since that is the name that they take and that their cherry picking is the same as any other self- proclaimed Christian. That silly book can be made to support anything.

            this is why I found fault with your claim that evangelical Christians aren’t Christians and only “bibliolaters”. Something that could also be applied to most, if no all Christians, they just idolize different parts of the book.

            Like

          • Barry says:

            Cherry picking is what it boils down to. Bible literalists believe the Bible is The Word of God. It’s a rule book that must be obeyed and is the source of all “truth”. They start from that basis. So yes I would agree that if they obey one command but ignore another, then it reasonable to consider they are cherry picking.

            More progressive Christians don’t start from that basis. They start from the basis that the ‘spirit’ (sorry, I can’t think of a better word) conveyed in words such as love, inclusiveness, compassion and care is what is important. They would argue that for them this is best conveyed by the example of Jesus. They would also acknowledge that the same wisdom is available from other sources and is not uniquely Christian. They acknowledge that the Bible is written by man and as well as containing wisdom and inspiration contains the prejudices and accepted “truths” of the authors’ culture.

            The fundamentalists work on the principle “Its in the Bible so it must be true for all time” whereas progressives ask “Why was this included in the Bible?” Just because it’s in the Bible doesn’t make it true.

            And you have misconstrued my comment about evangelical Christians. As I thought I explained, it was an attempt at hyperbole. My son calls himself a Christian and I accept that. However, as I have already illustrated, he holds views that are incompatible with those I hold and I believe are incompatible with the majority of Christians.

            Like

          • Barry, all Christians start with the bible. That’s the only place they get their stories. they do differ in what they claim as true and as not, but they all take at least parts of it as completely true. and true “for all time”. Fundamentalists do this as well as progressives.

            Like

          • Barry says:

            So what part of the Bible to Liberal and progressive Christians believe are completely true? The divinity of Jesus? A bodily resurrection? A great flood? The main difference between fundamentalists and liberal/progressives is the authority given to the Bible. That is where the prime difference lies. Fundamentalists also insist that what they believe also applies to everyone else. Progressives and liberals do not.

            Like

          • as I’ve said, they all pick and choose and they all start with the bible. Even liberal Christians claim that some of the nonsense in the bible is literally true. As for progressives and liberals insisting that other people believe as they do, they may not be as vocal, but they still think each other is wrong and with the same lack of evidence.

            Like

          • Barry says:

            So you keep repeating. Unfortunately that doesn’t make you claims any more true than does a fundamentalist repeatedly claiming that the world is only 6000 years old.

            As for progressives believing fundamentalists being “wrong” it is in regards to their words and deeds (how they act as human beings), and in this, they are no different from any person who places a high value on respect of person and social justice. Theology, or lack of theology, is entirely a personal choice. There is no right and wrong. To progressives, it is of no importance whether you are Christian, Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu, Wiccan or atheist.

            Like

          • Barry, it is your choice to deny what I’ve pointed out. That’s fine with me.

            Like

          • Barry says:

            I’m not denying. I’m asking for evidence instead of vague assertions

            Like

          • evidence of what? that evangelical Christians are still Christians?

            Like

        • makagutu says:

          And this is where the problem. The fundamentalists will not consider you a Christian and you see them as bibliolaters

          Like

    • makagutu says:

      I agree with you on this point

      Like

  6. basenjibrian says:

    There are very kind and educated people who can cherry pick from the Bible and Christian traditions and become a far better person than, say, I. (From his posts, I would say Barry is one of these!)

    But I would disagree that this is the dominant message, in either the Old or New Testaments. The underlying message is the Three Omni deity REALLY, REALLY screwed up His creation….but is all OUR fault.

    …I had a salowe vision
    wherein were fiery serpents and scorpions and drought
    …sand, in an abrasive swirling murk,
    covered the crackled book of life…

    A testimony
    from the dimension of regret.
    This voice comes
    from the second right after the disaster
    when all there is left to say
    in a distressed whisper is
    It is too late.

    The irreparable has been carved in stone
    and those made accountable for it are you.
    Standing, shivering in cold dim light
    waiting for the sentence of the Holy Dead
    like Adam and Eve at the end of time.

    One may argue that it was flawed
    since the beginning
    that the dice were loaded
    that God had it all within
    that He is the Source.
    O heavenly Father!
    pathogenic agent of contamination.
    harbinger of catastrophe,
    icon of the impending Fall:
    but what difference does it make?
    Altitudines Satana
    the vertigo of Liberty
    tipped the scales.
    A shadow of horror is risen.

    This will not be redeemed
    no matter how sincere the genuflection
    and ardent the confession.

    Like

    • makagutu says:

      The dice are indeed loaded.
      In defence of Barry, he has said clearly he takes the bible as a work of men, with some useful teachings here and there, but just a book and would be, in my view, unlikely to cherrypick go justify a given position.

      Like

    • Barry says:

      I don’t make a habit of reading the Bible. It doesn’t do much for me. About the only time I read a passage is when someone quotes from it and I feel the need to verify the accuracy of the quote and the context in which it was used.

      I’m not a Christian and don’t see a need for more than a passing familiarity with the Bible. If the occasion arises where an in depth understanding of a section, there’s plenty of literary criticism available from many sources. Simply put, the Bible is not the source of my beliefs. They come from the examples of values as lived by those around me including Christians, agnostics, atheists, Muslims, Buddhists, a Wiccan, and a great many more of whom I have no idea what religion (if any) they profess. My values are mine alone and while I would like them to be more universally accepted (but isn’t that true of everyone?) I acknowledge that evolutionary processes have made our species more belligerent and uncompromising than I’m comfortable with.

      As far as the content of the Bible is concerned, I have a recollection of a theologian (it may have been Geering but I’m not sure) who said something along the line that the Bible is an anthology of works containing every genre known including horror, romance, eroticism, mystery, fantasy, inspirational and biography among the better known ones. That’s how it should be read. I tend to agree.

      Liked by 1 person

We sure would love to hear your comments, compliments and thoughts.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s