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19 Responses

  1. Jean says:

    I can’t read every article touching on the Gaza war and retain my sanity, but I read Evangelicals in Israel and Gaza Speak. I found this relevant:

    “Regarding the traditional support for Israel by many evangelical leaders in the West, Al-Saliby pointed out that they should first partner with “local churches and ministries in the Holy Land and in the Arab world that are working for reconciliation and laying the foundations for a just peace”.

    In the midst of this conflict, I haven’t read a single word about Christians in Gaza, nor have I read a single word about the relevance of the Gospel. Where is the church of God in this matter?

    Is the church of God one with physical temporal borders? Is the church of God focused on those who can destroy the body, or Someone else?

    One would think that the American churches would support those entities in the Middle East which proclaim Christ, regardless of nationality or geography. By proclaiming Christ, I include Christ’s love and forgiveness of sinners of any race, nationality or gender.

    Right about now, some folks are getting really pissed at me. “How can you not be unequivocal about the blame deserved by Hamas?” How can you introduce any light between America and Israel?

    Folks, you assume that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a manifestation of the Law of Moses!

    Does the Church of God have the vocation to judge the cause of an attack on a hospital? Is the Church of God entrusted with the vocation of judging the laws of war? Did anyone hear see these topics taught in Seminary?

    As Michael wrote yesterday: “But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.”

    My call to all Christians and especially clergy is to return to your God given vocation to work in the Lord’s vineyard and harvest of souls for his kingdom.

  2. Michael says:

    Jean,

    Well said…thank you.

  3. Jean says:

    For some reason that I don’t fully understand, Christians in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza do not seem to matter to American Christians. Even though many of them are American citizens and/or in our denominational fellowships, we seem to subordinate them to the discrimination, laws and priorities of the government of Israel. I never have understood that.

  4. Michael says:

    Jean,

    Look no farther than dispensational theology and partisan politics…these both “trump” biblical Christianity…

  5. Linn says:

    Andy Stanley- it would be so much easier if he just came out and said that homosexuality and transgenderism are God-approved. Then he can take his church off on their new adventure while those of us who disagree can continue to work through the mess we have created.

    I do think churches who oppose the LGBTQ+ agenda need to lovingly reach out with the message that the hope of Jesus provides while dropping the name-calling and vitriol. And that may leave a small number of churches standing on the sexual norms of the Word of God.

  6. Pineapple Head says:

    I was able to preach in an Arab Christian church in Haifa some 5 years ago. Not a perfect church (they were in the midst of some internal strife…not unlike the stuff we Americans struggle with), but their love for Jesus was clear. And such hospitality! Got to interact with a lot of Arab Israelis (believing and not) and enjoyed their zest for life.

  7. Captain Kevin says:

    The commentary on the Magnificat was a sweet diversion.

  8. Michael says:

    Linn,

    “I do think churches who oppose the LGBTQ+ agenda need to lovingly reach out with the message that the hope of Jesus provides while dropping the name-calling and vitriol. ”

    Maybe they should clean up the sexual sin and abuse in their own ranks first…then we would have the moral authority to speak to the culture…

  9. filistine says:

    willie nelson and revival–very good, well-reasoned, well-intentioned article.

  10. Terry says:

    Should Christians watch horror movies… Like the video’s creator, I grew up loving the Universal films. Like the works some of them were based on, they were like morality plays, with clear definitions of good and evil.

    What I have never enjoyed were the slasher films that emerged in the 70s. They had no moral compass and seemed to enjoy the violence. I’ve still never watched the Friday the 13th, Halloween, or Nightmare on Elm Street films.

    But… I really like Jordan Peele’s recent horror films. They are full of meaning and insight into the modern cultural experience.

  11. WenatcheeTheHatchet says:

    Hamori has a new book coming out? I’ll have to get around to getting that one

    I’ve “liked” Peele’s movies but Get Out and Us fell apart almost completely in their third acts for me, whereas I really liked Nope across the run time. I do like that he plays with horror tropes without going slasher. By contrast, Ari Aster drives me up the wall with trailing entrails lame retreads of the concept of The Wicker Man.

  12. pam says:

    I do not understand why Christians live in Gaza or Palestine.

  13. Michael says:

    pam,

    Many have lived in the area for generations…others have converted.

  14. The New Victor says:

    Mike Flannaga’s Midnight Mass explored a lot of religious and philosophical themes in-story, including religious zealotry. I didn’t think it was a critique of Christianity or the RCC.

    Currently watching The Fall of the House of Usher which is about as Christian as the original Poe stories though this and the original material certainly explored moral themes.

    Verna is an anagram for Raven. She’s not a demon, but a Harbinger age she gives each Usher child a choice and a way out of their impending, gruesome deaths. True to their characters, which are utterly depraved, they make the wrong choices.

    In Unforgiven, Will Munny said, “deservin’s got nothing to do with it” though the viewer might disagree. In TFotHoU, they all deserve it, especially the patriarch who lords over all. Several of the children are also hedonists, not portrayed as a positive. No one who is innocent suffers the curse, even those connected as romantic interests or spouses (except for one spouse who “bites the apple” and was given an out by Verna, but chooses to stay and suffer the consequences.

    The modern take is that Usher’s Big Pharma company is a stand-in for the company responsible for the opioid crisis. They became billionaires by destroying ordinary people.

  15. Michael says:

    WTH,

    You have an amazingly broad set of interests…you may be as close to genius as we have here.

  16. Captain Kevin says:

    Michael, I’m glad you said that. Most of the time, when I read WTH’s comments here, I think, “Man, I’m stupid.”

  17. Robin says:

    The CT article was straightforward “Jesus was not a pacifist”. I think that’s a bold claim, and reckless. Maybe the question should be if Jesus taught us to be pacifists? And being pacifist does not mean being relativist. We can say that Israel was the one wronged and still pray and hope for cooler heads and live to prevail ultimately. Does being pacifist mean that we believe nations should not fight? I think not, it means I personally should turn the other cheek and love my enemy.

  18. Michael says:

    Robin,

    Anyone who reads the Revelation knows that Jesus is not ultimately a pacifist, though He lived and died as one.

    The NT is clear that the state has authority to wield the sword…individual believers, not so much.

  19. WenatcheeTheHatchet says:

    well, the Hamori book arrived. 🙂 Will eventually have to post about it at the usual site when I’m done reading it. I’ve read a couple of her books over the years, the first being …

    Women’s Divination in Biblical Literature: Prophecy, Necromancy, and Other Arts of Knowledge.

    She contributed to an SBL publication called:

    Prophets Male and Female: Gender and Prophecy in the Hebrew Bible, the Eastern Mediterranean, and the Ancient Near East.

    She also co-edited a fun book called:

    Perchance to Dream: Dream Divination in the Bible and the Ancient Near East

    with Jonathan Stokl, who edited a book on divination as political speech in ancient near eastern empires, which is tet another SBL publication. She’s Union Theological Seminary based and “probably” quite a bit more “liberal” than I am on a few topics I’ve enjoyed reading her work and wanted to give it a plug in case people hadn’t heard of her work before and were interested in reading more of it.

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