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53 Responses

  1. Captain Kevin says:

    MacArthur just gets more rude by the day.

  2. Linn says:

    Calvary Chapel-always in the news for all the wrong reasons. My neighbor who attended there used to talk about men on roof watching for cop cars. They weren’t tracing cases very much at all during this time as there were too many of them.

  3. The New Victor says:

    I wonder how much $ is being spent by CCSJ on legal defense? That side does have a point, but they didn’t just return to worship but instead blatantly violated health rules, almost like they invited the fines. Of course, they at least doubled attendance and membership. New tithes and offerings can go a long way. It’s a horrible witness, IMO. Was that large influx of money used to actually help those in need?

  4. Muff Potter says:

    Captain Kevin wrote:
    “MacArthur just gets more rude by the day.”

    Let’s face it, MacArthur hates women.

  5. JD says:

    Calvary Chapel is not generally known for helping those in need.

  6. Kevin H says:

    Definitely more important to spend $1.2M to fight the culture wars and free your people from the horrible governmental oppression of having to wear a mask for a temporary period of time than it is to use that money to help the poor and needy or to fund missionaries who are spreading the Gospel.

    Priorities.

  7. Kevin H says:

    Here’s what I had previously written about the Fox News settlement:

    Companies may pay a few million, even tens of millions to make a problem go away, even if they don’t think they’re guilty, as the fight just isn’t worth it. Companies DO NOT pay $787.5 million if they don’t think they’re guilty. That type of money is more than worth the fight, many times even when a company knows they’re guilty but yet they hope they can trick the courts or that the known evidence against them is not compelling enough.

    Fox News knew they were guilty, and they knew the evidence was strongly against them, so they agreed to pay a huge sum to avoid an even huger sum. This is a reality that cannot be denied.

    While it will not happen, it is long past time for people to give up the fictitious, destructive, slanderous, and completely unsubstantiated accusations of widespread, election changing voter fraud. It is time they hold themselves accountable to truth and reality and hold accountable those who fed them these lies. The damage done to this country by such lies has been far-reaching and immense.

    For my Christian friends who have been caught up in such falsity and deception, please remember we follow after a Savior who is full of grace and forgiveness. In Him we are redeemed and find strength to change our ways.

  8. Kevin H says:

    Wouldn’t be surprised if someday we see the same headline about John MacArthur that we just did about James MacDonald. Bullies do what bullies do.

  9. Linn says:

    I think for some, FOX means Faithful Overcomers CXRostian news service. They are almost on equal par with a holy writ.

  10. Tim says:

    Kevin –
    With respect, I doubt you know how much money CCSJ spends on missions and/or local benevolence. (Nor do I, for that matter.)

    For my 2 cents, I think it was right for CCSJ and GCC and others to stand up to the oppressive lockdown mandates in clear violation of the 1st Amendment.

    In my city when the lockdown restraints were brand-new, we asked those who could to remain home, while we kept our doors open for those who (for whatever reason) did not access us via internet. We locked our doors one time, out of a deference to a command by our top county official…an action I immediately regretted and from which I publicly repented. Never again will these doors be locked as long as the gospel is being preached inside. Never.

  11. Linn says:

    Tim,

    I live in the same area as CCSJ. My church opened earlier than “allowed”, but we did not make a big deal out of it as CCSJ did. We also required registration for services, distancing, and masks. I chose the online for a few more months, but I did respect my church leadership, although I did not agree. However, there was no public thumbing the nose at local government or criticizing those who did not return. CCSJ, on the other hand, crammed their church as full as they could and made a huge deal out of attracting as much attention as possible to their cause. i have several neighbors who attend there, and they made a big deal out of staying open, too.

    I have a feeling that if they had been a bit more subtle about what was going on, there would have been no media attention and no fines. They were causing traffic issues, their neighbors were terrified of getting sick, and it was all-around (in my opinion) a very bad way to circumvent COVID.

    Just my opinion… there are different ways to deal with issues than being confrontational all the time.

  12. Tim says:

    Linn –
    I was looking for a way to give you a “thumbs up” acknowledgement of your comment…and realized I’ve used facebook and twitter for far too long. LOL.

    I’m not in San Jose, of course, so you would know better of the local situation than myself.

    So much of what we were initially told regarding the lockdowns was so vastly incorrect that I find myself questioning a lot of the response I originally had. Hindsight is 20/20 obviously…I would do a lot of things differently.

  13. Kevin H says:

    Tim,

    Linn already spoke to much to a lot of what I would say. Approach and attitude have a lot to do with it.

    I would also add, I have no problem with churches who chose not to follow measures which forbid gathering, but what CCSJ was fined here for was not that reason, but rather their refusal to follow masking requirements. We can debate over and over about the efficacy of masks, but to defy the government over such a thing which has little to no impact on a church’s ability to gather, fellowship, and worship is foolish and sinful disobedience.

    You’re right, I have no idea as to how CCSJ spends its money and how much they already give to missions and benevolence, but I can say with certainty that this $1.2M they ended up spending on fighting masks was a terrible and unrighteous stewardship of money. Just about any other prioritized use of their time and money would have been better.

  14. Michael says:

    The pandemic was plagued with theatrical productions politically and in the church, guaranteeing that the next pandemic wipes out more than the last.

    CCSJ was one of the more successful productions and 1.2 million (plus probably at least that much in legal fees) was just the cost of doing business.

    It also established the son as a successor to his father in the power structure of the sect…

  15. Michael says:

    Among all the lies told by media on both sides of the divide, the “stolen election” lies are the most damnable.

    When people in a democracy no longer believe that their vote counts, it is a small step from there to violent revolution.

  16. Em Wegemer says:

    I live with my youngest daughter, who has 37 years in the medical field, She and several docs were let go for refusing the Covid vaccine (it wasn’t a vaccine, btw.)!

  17. Michael says:

    There is much we know in hindsight…but we didn’t know much when this started.

    We need a full, honest, and bi partisan reckoning…which we are utterly incapable of doing at the moment.

  18. bob1 says:

    Mike Lindell — now there’s a unique and. special kind of stupid.

  19. Linn says:

    CCSJ has gone on record that they will take their fight to the Supreme Court. It will be interesting to see how it turns out.

  20. Linn says:

    Tim,

    I think many of us would have done things differently! I’m from a church where we had people with all kinds of opinions, and they even differed among the elders. The positives-acting prayerfully and wisely. We did lose a few people to CCSJ, but most stayed, either online or in person. We were asked not to judge and to act in love. When we were publicly open, space was made in the back for the masked and socially distanced and others could sit unmasked up front. Not perfect, but it got people back to church.

    I hope whatever the next national emergency is, that we will be more careful and thoughtful about our actions.

  21. Alan says:

    2020 represented an escalation in the narrative of stolen elections which goes back to at least 2000. Our democracy has been headed toward violent revolution since then.

    The totalitarians of the 20th century had histories of violent protestors going unchecked long before they consolidated their power.

    These two political parties in America are stoking flames that will not end without apocalyptic fury.

    The security state is the winner of these things. Since the Patriot Act we’ve been creeping toward the end of civil liberty.

  22. Victorious says:

    Too bad, CCSJ does not allow women pastors. The only McClure that acted like and treated people with the presence and character as a pastor during my day while living and serving there, was Jean. Jesus and a few special servants were very sweet during that time.

    On a side note;

    I actually was able to show my now wife the CCSJ facilities where I lived three decades prior in a mid May 2020 spur of the moment visit during a pandemic road trip to visit family. An elder and his wife had the fireside room open for anybody that wanted prayer on a weeknight. That kind of opening is what was needed rather than large gatherings.

  23. Alan says:

    Now into those things the body of Christ has a role to play but unless we reject the heresies of power offered by left and right we will have no role at all.

    It requires a very profound renunciation of these idols to mark out a place that will not be co-opted by one or the other.

  24. Alan says:

    There were good reasons for Jesus followers to align with their nation vs Rome in post ascension Israel – the writer of Hebrews call to go to Jesus outside the gate bearing his reproach required extreme political and religious courage. They were to renounce their security in every aspect.

    They were to have no nation, no security, no rights and no home.

    I don’t know how we can find such faith.

  25. Michael says:

    “I don’t know how we can find such faith.”

    By studying the examples given by Gods people in exile in the Scriptures…I believe Daniel and John have charted the course for us already…but it is a fearsome map…

    I bless you for your thoughts…we will not always agree, but the input is invaluable for all of us…

  26. Victorious says:

    Alan- In regards to finding that faith . . . I think Hebrews provides the answer for building a faith that ultimately has the capacity to go and live outside the camp while loving those who may mock, malign and/or maim.

    We build that kind of faith by continually experiencing the cleansing, building and strengthening varieties of mercy and grace found at the throne of grace as we renounce our supposed strengths and securities in His presence and find the strength and affirmations of Jesus freely available to reform our identities and practices experientially.

    Hebrews 4:14-16

  27. Victorious says:

    Amen to what you said as well, Michael.

    Studying the saints of exile or those resisting the “normalcy” of their times forges for and invites us into a new group identity for us to live humbly into that provides us with a “new and living way” connection with the same Jesus whom they had a glimpse of during their days. I think that is the thrust of Hebrews 11 and 12.

  28. Alan says:

    Vic

    I’m not sure you are perceiving the extreme nature of my point.

    We in America barely inconvenience ourselves for our faith.

    I know how to increase faith but not how to embrace self denial.

    Perhaps you do.

  29. Chris A says:

    I know how to increase faith but not how to embrace self denial……that is a really great statement. It reminds me of this quote:

    Dennis F. Kinlaw (1922-2017) stated, “Satan disguises submission to himself under the ruse of personal autonomy. He never asks us to become his servants. Never once did the serpent say to Eve, ‘I want to be your master.’ The shift in commitment is never from Christ to evil; it is always from Christ to self. And instead of his will, self-interest now rules and what I want reigns. And that is the essence of sin.”

  30. Officerhoppy says:

    Great quote Chris

  31. victorious says:

    How can the obedience of faith increase or grow without self denial? Seems like an oxymoron or we are not synchronizing our definition of terms. E.G. “ I exercise or grow in faith by refusing to retaliate when wronged or harmed by enemies and choose to forgive and pray for those who wronged me. To me that seems like I have also exercised self denial by laying down the choice to retaliate. In the case of being wronged by another believer I may attempt to offer some form of restoration of fellowship as well within reason.

  32. Alan says:

    Vic

    I affirm all that you’ve said but my original assertion is simply not understood. Perhaps I am too obscure for this kind of discourse.

    I simply do not think we have sufficient obedience to put ourselves in line for the loss of all things. We knuckle when our personal peace and affluence are threatened. That kind of faith will be required of some generation in the near future. The powers of this age are more and more determined to have our obedience to their values.

    But I have been wrong before.

    I speak in terms of the beastly powers that Michael is studying.

    But I affirm your assertions about our personal devotion and service.

  33. Em Wegemer says:

    10 years now up in these mountains and I am sick of them – prayer request

  34. Michael says:

    My studies are in the toddler stage, but I think I have discerned a few things.

    One of those things is that it is possible for Christians to live inside a beast empire faithfully, but they have to live in recognizable, strong communities of faith which are far more committed to pleasing God than critiquing empire or seizing the power of the beast.

    What we don’t have are those kinds of communities.

    While it is correct that the early church was not pristine (the Bible is clear on that) the goal was always to be a separated community within a community that served God and each other and the pagans surrounding them…for the sake of the Gospel.

    Their identity was to be the people of God and national interests were way down the line…perhaps because they believed that their true King had come and was coming soon to rule and reign with them…

  35. Alan says:

    Yes
    Kingdom theology is the true remedy to nationalism.

  36. Michael says:

    Em,

    You desire prayers for relocation?

  37. Duane Arnold says:

    “…the goal was always to be a separated community within a community that served God and each other and the pagans surrounding them…for the sake of the Gospel.”

    Yes, and the extraordinary thing about this was that early Christianity is mainly an urban phenomena. The faith took hold in urban centers much more readily and much more quickly than in the rural countryside. This means that the church was confronted with empire on a daily basis, but seldom do you see anything relating to this within the pages of the New Testament. A critique of secular society, much less of the politics of the day, is not seen. They were not interested in creating a new civil society, they were waiting for a kingdom which was not of this earth. The society that they were interested in was that of the church…

  38. Em Wegemer says:

    Relocation would be nice, Michael….. 😇

  39. Michael says:

    “The society that they were interested in was that of the church…”

    This is where we need to be.
    These communities were economically self sufficient in that they financially invested in the church to care for those who, for reasons of health, death of a spouse, or persecution, could not care for themselves.
    We need to separate out taking our money with us…instead of sending it to anti-Christ politicians in the hope that they will bring a kingdom that suits us…

    We need to invest all our efforts into the church to re-establish the foundational purpose of the church that it can be a sanctuary for the people of God.

  40. Michael says:

    Em,

    Then that is what we will pray for…

  41. pstrmike says:

    “the goal was always to be a separated community within a community that served God and each other and the pagans surrounding them…for the sake of the Gospel.”

    “The faith took hold in urban centers much more readily and much more quickly than in the rural countryside”

    We have to establish in our minds a better understanding of what a “separated community” actual means. I think the church has gravitated toward a cultural expression that comes close to prizing an adversarial position against secularism—this is how we define faithfulness— or we, for the sake of gaining marketshare, seek an popular cultural expression that lacks the depth of a spirituality of the Kingdom.

    Historically, urban centers have always been much more democratic in nature, and by that I mean a freer exchange of ideas than rural environments that are more secluded and insular. I understand that there are always exceptions, but this is generally true. My one concern is that we may have entered an era that will rewrite all the cultural rules and norms—another dark age if you will. A separated community in urban environments has to engage with other cultural expressions if the want a voice. That requires that we listen not only to be polite, but to hear the vein of truth amidst the distortions that are currently present.

  42. Michael says:

    pstrmike,

    Well said.
    I do think we are on the cusp of a “dark age” that will complete the rewriting of of cultural norms…making it even more critical that the church have a unique and recognizable identity that speaks mainly through how it lives.

    You make an excellent point about our warped definition of faithfulness…

  43. Michael says:

    I’m at that point in the day when I have a hard time being coherent, so bear with me.

    I think we are at a unique point in history…this empire is failing, but we still have much freedom and access to wealth and media.

    This is the moment to change course while we can…being laser focused on building these communities of faith, taking our cues from what the Bible tells us the role of exiles should be and purifying that which has been defiled.

    I could be totally full of it as well…but I think this opportunity may pass quicker than we think it will…

  44. Duane Arnold says:

    Here’s a Bible quiz…

    During the life of Christ and the writing and formation of the New Testament, there were 13 Roman emperors and imperial administrations. How many are mentioned in the New Testament writings? How many had their administrations critiqued or endorsed by the church?

    The answer should be informative…

  45. Michael says:

    I can think of two that are mentioned, none that are critiqued…

  46. Josh says:

    That is a neat thought, Duane.

  47. Em Wegemer says:

    Dr. Duane, dunno…… 🤔

  48. Linn says:

    1 Thess 4:10-12 is how we as Christmas should approach the culture.

  49. bob1 says:

    Facts are stubborn things…

  50. Linnea Sands says:

    “There is much we know in hindsight…but we didn’t know much when this started.”

    Michael, there were those that knew, based on divine revelation, that this was a problem but were banished from speaking.

  51. Michael says:

    Linnea,

    When it comes to medical issues, I’m not trusting anyones revelations except doctors.

    There is no doubt that our institutions failed us, but I would have rejected claims of divine revelation out of hand.

    I still find very few of those folks credible…but credibility is hard to find anywhere.

  52. Officerhoppy says:

    Divine revelation?

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