Nashville: Kevin H

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130 Responses

  1. Captain Kevin says:

    Yes Lord, have mercy, please.

  2. Em Wegemer says:

    Captain Kevin, AMEN again

  3. Em Wegemer says:

    My late husband and I used to worship at the Presbyterian Church at the base of our hill. One Sunday morning a same sex couple walked in with their arms around each other. I thought they were trying to bait that church – dunno

  4. Duane Arnold says:

    Michael,

    Well said…
    For myself, I have no tears left. The current extremes hold no answers or comfort, but to move towards the middle and compromise is seemingly beyond our comprehension or ability…

  5. Michael says:

    Duane,

    Thanks…KevinH wrote this one.

    The inability to compromise for the common good will be the end of all we know…

  6. Em Wegemer says:

    Compromise for the common good?

  7. Michael says:

    Compromise for the common good is how we made a democracy work…refusal to compromise will be the end of it…

  8. Kevin H says:

    We all have certain things that we won’t compromise on and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The problem is that our list of what we won’t compromise on has seemingly grown exceedingly long, and that is where you can’t maintain a democracy, or relationships of any significance at that.

  9. bob1 says:

    Barry Black is a man I deeply admire. He’s a pastor with the SDA, FWIW. He’s also the Senate Chaplain. He has been since 2003.

    Here’s his opening prayer today:

    “Lord, when babies die at a church school, it is time for us to move beyond thoughts and prayers. Remind our lawmakers of the words of … Edmund Burke: ‘All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing.'”

  10. Muff Potter says:

    bob1 wrote:

    “Lord, when babies die at a church school, it is time for us to move beyond thoughts and prayers. Remind our lawmakers of the words of … Edmund Burke: ‘All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing.’”

    Yes it is time to move beyond ‘thoughts and prayers’.
    We can start by pestering our lawmakers that not just any Bob, Bill, Daryl, and Betty should allowed to purchase firearms, 2nd Amendment be damned.
    Please note that I am a gun owner myself who believes in reason, common sense, the public safety, and the rule of law.

  11. Michael says:

    A former contributor wants to point out that the shooter was a transsexual.

    This is fine…as long as we look at the profiles of other shooters who weren’t…and most were not.

    Mental illness is a factor…among many.

    What was Tim McVeigh’s problem?

  12. Officerhoppy says:

    Good OP Kevin!

    As a side note, hats off to the police officers who responded, and methodically and quickly ultra liked the threat. Uvalde should examine the video and take notes

    And BTW—Jean-Pierre is blaming Republicans for the shooting. No one plays the blame game better than Washington D.C.

  13. Officerhoppy says:

    Should read “nuetralized” the threat.

  14. Officerhoppy says:

    Damned spell check!!

  15. Michael says:

    Most mass shooters are young white mails.
    It appears that this is the second case of hundreds of shootings that has been carried out by a trans person.

    https://nij.ojp.gov/topics/articles/public-mass-shootings-database-amasses-details-half-century-us-mass-shootings

  16. LInn says:

    In the 20 years I have been in my present school we have enhanced our security. More cameras, more security guards (we’re a private school), access only to the front office as all gates are locked at 8:15. We haven’t barcoded the kids and staff yet, but I guess it could happen.

    it would still be incredibly easy to get in here, as it was for the Memphis shooter yesterday. Climb a fence, shoot in a glass door…climb a fence, sprint across the field gain, access to the main building and shoot, disguise yourself as a delivery person…it’s crazy where my mind goes sometimes when I’m sitting at my desk and my students are working on a test. i constantly pray for quick reflexes and God’s protection if it ever happens here.

  17. Officerhoppy says:

    I’m not sure that the shooter was a transgendered woman is relevant to the Nashville shooting. Maybe—i just don’t know. But I do know, as evidenced by the fact the perpetrator was able to amass a cache of weapons, that the primary cause of most of the mass shootings is the easy access to guns here in America.

    Unlike any other country in the world, there are more guns in this country than people. We’ve gotta do something about that—IMO

  18. Michael says:

    Officerhoppy,

    We have someone on the back end who wants to make it the single issue…

  19. Steve says:

    Kevin, I think this shooting is one the church will remember for some time and will not forget. At least to me it seems it was a calculated direct attack on the church. To me this seems like a visible picture of an invisible spiritual war that we Christians all are in. My honest question is how should the church respond when it receives a direct hit like this?

  20. Officerhoppy says:

    Steve
    I’m an x-cop. There are probably some mental issues that played into the shooters decision to attack the school. Certainly there are spiritual forces at work but I see this as something more tangible than spiritual. At least that’s how to address the problem—unless of course we can get everyone to come to Christ—even then there is no guarantee situations like this can be stopped.

    For what it’s worth, a start would be to remove assault rifles. Granted, people kill people and if one is determined to kill another human being, they will find the means. But by removing assault rifles, which are designed to kill a lot of people in a short time, e may be able to minimize the damage caused by these people.

    I am not against owning weapons. But assault rifles, have no place in society.

    Just my opinion.

    What do churches do? Sad to say we need security and armed personnel. To bad it’s come to this but my motto as both a police officer and a pastor is “to protect and serve”

  21. Michael says:

    Steve,

    That may be one of the top 10 most offensive comments in the history of this site.

    There have been 373 school shootings since Columbine.

    There are six pages of mass shootings this year.

    https://www.gunviolencearchive.org/reports/mass-shooting

    So…all those dead kids that were shot before…and now the church sits up and takes notice?

    It is incomprehensible to me that someone would even think this way…what the hell…

  22. Michael says:

    You know what surprises me after 20 some years…that one or a dozen of the kids abused and betrayed in the church haven’t walked in and blown a few places to hell…because the church has done more damage to more people than trans people could even muster…

  23. bob1 says:

    That’s gotta be one of most idiotic, tone-deaf comments I’ve seen on here in a long time.

  24. Jean says:

    There have been dozens of mass shootings within schools over the past several years. They appear to be getting more requent. At some level, behind ever mass shooting is a mentally deranged mind. A sane, reasonable, mentally well person would not kill teachers and students in a school.

    It is the deliberate policy of our politicians to do nothing about limiting the ability of people who are mentally dangerous to others to acquire the means to mass murder other people’s children. In my theological opinion, large parts of our culture are slaves to idolatry. Like any religion (except Christianity), sacrifices are made to one’s god.

  25. Steve says:

    Michael,. I in absolutely no way am diminishing the tragedy of any shooting anywhere. I made no mention of any trans person whatsoever. It’s your reading into what I wrote. I’m addressing this shooting specifically because it’s part of a denomination I once was part of and a pastors kid was killed and targeted. I don’t have answers for how the world is supposed to respond to the evils in society. I’m not attempting to do that. I specifically was asking how the church is supposed to respond to this. So far, what I have heard is the church needs more security and armed guards and I guess more outrage at how how terrible the church is and it actually deserves it. Talk about offensive! Anything else?

  26. Kevin H says:

    Steve,

    I know your original question was posed towards me but others jumped on replying to you. You have already been castigated quite a bit so I won’t pile on.

    I will say this – These mass shootings have taken place in all kinds of different locales and environments with all kinds of different motivations by the shooters. With that understanding, I believe it is mistaken to focus on just this one shooting and get all concerned about the “church” being attacked, as all kinds of other entities and people have been attacked so the church is not unique at all in this regards. Any and every attack like this is a “spiritual war” as I am convinced they are influenced by Satan.

    How should the church respond? Again, this specific attack took place in a church environment but most others have not. To any of these attacks, the church should respond by continuing to be about God’s work and God’s Kingdom. In these particular instances of tragic shootings, I would envision such things as trying to provide whatever care possible through physical and emotional means, weeping with those who weep. I would envision work through practical means to try to prevent future shootings from happening throughout all society – be that through advocating for measures that would restrict the acquisition of guns that contain far more killing power than any ordinary human would ever need, or restricting the ease of acquiring firearms by those who show red flags of being potential threats, or considering the placement of more armed guards to help protect those places that are vulnerable to attack. And as I address in this article, I would envision the church working to bring calm and peace to the rhetoric and attitudes of the culture wars which have fomented increasingly violent “us” vs. “them” attitudes and contribute to creating and emboldening those who carry out such heinous attacks.

  27. Alan says:

    What is obvious is that we have neither solutions nor even language to talk about this horror. Removing guns will be the “solution” but that will require the creeping government to leap. America is headed in collectivist directions. The experiment with individual rights and freedoms is giving way to safety concerns and national emergency powers.

    That prophet Dave Matthews noted that the tourniquet is not holding anymore in spite of our twisting.

    To be free you must be good and our nation has no capacity to produce the kinds of people who can be free very long. I lament the unending disdain for what is called “the church” in this space. It isn’t helping.

    And Steve, your comment was not deserving of the vilification but public discourse does not allow your kind of expression at this time.

  28. Steve says:

    Alan, I share your lament and appreciate your comment.

  29. Kevin H says:

    Before we go any further, I just wanted to underscore that as much as guns are chiefly embroiled in this issue, the intent of my article was not to deliberate guns but rather to challenge attitudes – attitudes that have polluted our nation and have very much seeped into the church.

    And despite our misguided and destructive attitudes, to cry out that God may have mercy on us and bring healing and restoration.

  30. Alan says:

    Yes the skill of turning every issue that rises into another opportunity to decry the church is noted.

  31. Kevin H says:

    Alan,

    For as much as many parts of the American church will regularly decry the ills and evils of the world around them (and there is validity to a good portion of their decries), there are far less in the church who will decry the ills and evils that exist within. I say this from my own observations of culture, Christian media, personal conversations, and my own Facebook feed which is populated with many Christians and for every one post I see someone dealing with a difficulty within the Christian culture, I will see 10-20 posts decrying Biden or the “woke” or the “baby-killing” Democrats. Now maybe my experiences in these things are unique only to myself, but I have strong proclivity to think they are not.

    The strong focus on the wrongs on the outside help to create the “us vs. them” attitudes that are in many ways antithetical to how God calls us to see and love others. All the more from what I see in Scripture, as Christians our concern with behaviors and attitudes is to be focused much more within our own family of faith than on those who are without. Thus, agree with it or not, my aim is to in whatever little way I can, to bring a measure of corrective balance in an important manner where I believe the church has allowed itself to become significantly unbalanced.

  32. Michael says:

    Alan,

    With all due respect (as I have slowly come to understand your despite of identity politics) I should be decrying what represents the “Church” even more…because the American church in general bears no resemblance to the NT church or the early church in the centuries afterward.

    Very little…in fact, it stands in opposition to much of what the NT church standards are.

    At this point, it is another corrupt identity group claiming oppression…

  33. Alan says:

    As a gospel minister, my attitude toward the church is not negotiable; I am to love the church and give myself for it and I am to wash the church with water and the Word. (Ep 5) Perhaps that is what you intend. It is what Christ did and what he beckons from us.

    Guilt and stain is the language of both sacred and secular spaces these days. Everyone is really trying to mark themselves as innocent by whatever means. The religious question IS unyielding and will not be denied. So it goes on here too.

  34. Michael says:

    How should the “church” respond?
    Buy a Bible and read it.
    It tells you what the church was created for and what it wasn’t…then do what you just read.

  35. Alan says:

    Michael,

    I would say we resemble the church of every age. I don’t think there has been a pure or innocent church era. Otherwise I would have to rip out the epistles. They expose a church needing reformation from the beginning.

  36. Michael says:

    I wonder how the church in question will respond.
    The pastor just lost one of his reasons for living.
    No one with a child will ever feel safe again, anywhere.

    There are questions that come with the death of children that eclipse anything else we suffer.

    Mainly, they will suffer and they will suffer for the rest of their lives…because so far, we have decided there is nothing else we can do.

  37. Michael says:

    Alan,

    The difference is that the epistles shine a light on that behavior with real intent to correct it.

    It isn’t worried about the drag show downtown or the prostitutes down at the temple…it is always cleaning its own house.

    We demand that the house be seen as clean despite the smell and rot that tell us otherwise.

  38. Alan says:

    Michael,

    “I wonder how the church in question will respond.” Indeed and your notes about suffering are a profound YES and God help us.

    There is more to this story. That shooter likely had an intentional grudge that may nor may not surface but the leaders of that church will know something of it.

    I think the pastor will respond in the grace of Christ. I think the comforts of Jesus will sustain him. I think he will show us a grace that only his family can know. We will see.

    Pretty much every space in this nation is going to be in the process of becoming like an airport. We will likely choose safety over liberty. We don’t have the freedom to continue living in liberty. Our slavery is ruling. The gods of this age are constricting us. We are suffocating.

  39. Duane Arnold says:

    “In 2020 (the most recent year with available data from the CDC), firearms were the number one cause of death for children ages 1-19 in the United States, taking the lives of 4,357 children. With the exception of Canada, in no other peer country were firearms among the top five leading causes of childhood deaths. Motor vehicle accidents and cancer are the two most common causes of death for this age group in all other comparable countries.

    Combining all child firearm deaths in the U.S. with those in other OECD countries with above median GDP and GDP per capita, the U.S. accounts for 97% of gun-related child deaths, despite representing 46% of the total population in these similarly large and wealthy countries. Combined, the eleven other peer countries account for only 153 of the total 4,510 firearm deaths for children ages 1-19 years in these nations in 2020, and the U.S. accounts for the remainder.

    Firearms account for 20% of all child deaths in the U.S., compared to an average of less than 2% of child deaths in similarly large and wealthy nations.”

    Kaiser Family Foundation

  40. Michael says:

    I’m at the end of my long war to try to be the light of Scripture to our churches…I don’t have many years left, if I have years at all.

    I will leave behind family who desperately need the church to be a safe place, the family of God, committed to Jesus and each other.

    I grieve that I can’t find such a place for them…I worry constantly that they will be indoctrinated with one of the false gospels used to fill the pews that collapses under siege from the world, the flesh, and the devil.

    I have to contend with these false gospels daily as they have replaced the Scriptures…whatever the opposite is of “woke” is now the basic message of many.

    I spend most of my prayer life interceding for my loved ones that Jesus will protect them from from the world and what the church has become…

  41. Duane Arnold says:

    “…because the American church in general bears no resemblance to the NT church or the early church in the centuries afterward.”

    This is simply the historic truth for anyone who cares to do the least amount of study or reflection…

  42. Michael says:

    Alan,

    You may well be right…but we will get what we deserve.

    Freedom does indeed require people to be good and part of that good is in selecting leaders with a concern for the common good.

    We have no leaders.

    We eschew personal responsibility for being and doing good if our silo is threatened with a placard.

    We no longer have a concern for the common good, but a frantic hope to defeat the other.

    The political square has failed, but it is not part of my calling…my calling is to tell other believers that we should be living in an alternative space with the King…

  43. Michael says:

    “This is simply the historic truth for anyone who cares to do the least amount of study or reflection…”

    Thank you, Duane…I do not understand why this is even a question…

  44. Duane Arnold says:

    It is a question because far too many expect what they call “church” to simply be a reflection of their own opinions and prejudices.

  45. Michael says:

    I could be wrong…but it seems to me that we have allowed ideology to make mental illness related to gender issues normal and worth affirmation.

    I’m too old to start that fight…

  46. Alan says:

    It is clear that the ideology of gender transition is considered normal and that it must be affirmed. That is virtual public policy at present. What do you mean?

  47. BrideofChrist says:

    20% of child deaths are caused by firearms in the United States according to the Kaiser Foundation? God help us. Pro gun Republicans appear to be the actual” baby killers” in America. God help us! I pray the scales will fall from their eyes and they will see the blood of innocents on their hands.

  48. Michael says:

    I mean it’s time to say that it isn’t normal and we need to quit protecting our ideologies and say so.

    The current silos all have destruction built in…

  49. Michael says:

    This shooting wasn’t simply an attack on a church because the shooter hates Jesus…the church was simply the focus of this weeks insanity, by a sick person.

    There was a long history there…

    It was an attack on sanity and order and any sort of standard of normality.

    Such things will continue as we all protect something less than the common good to someone else’s disgust…

    I long to be left alone to be a feral cat farmer…

  50. Xenia Moos says:

    “Yes the skill of turning every issue that rises into another opportunity to decry the church is noted.”

    This is the main reason I am no longer a part of this blog community.

    Nevertheless, I hold you all with great affection.

  51. Michael says:

    Xenia,

    Yet you have no issue decrying the culture…I simply say the church, if truly loved, should be the focus of our demands for reform.

    I’m saying the same things Paul and the apostles and our Lord said…but do what makes you comfortable.

  52. McGarrett says:

    I believe that the HIPPA Law, is to protect our medical record rights. Why can’t there be some kind of policy, without full disclosure, that when a person goes to purchase a firearm, that part of the background check is if they have a medical record dealing with mental issues? Probably would never be allowed but just a thought.

  53. Michael says:

    McGarrett,

    I would fully support such a check…

  54. Michael says:

    Now that my pain pills are kicking in…here’s a proposition for my critics to consider.

    I think we would all agree that the only real hope for humanity is the Gospel and the church is the steward and agent of proclamation for the Gospel.

    We may also agree that the church is empowered by God as it follows the leading of the Spirit in obedience to Jesus.

    If the church will not follow and obey…what hope is there at all?

    That is what the fight is for and why we fight it.

    The only real hope we have…

  55. Kevin H says:

    I reserve most of my writings these days to my own Facebook page as to not stir up too much consternation here.

    One thing I have found on my Facebook page is that I have often received complaints about being too negative, judgmental, pharisaical, and so on about the church and Christian culture, to the extent I have even been called satanic. I am told I am self-righteous, deceived, and of course, “woke”.

    Sometimes I point out to many of these same people that they are often commonly negative, judgmental, condemning, etc. of leftist things and people they likely don’t consider to be in the faith, or at the very least they have no difficulty with people who are negative, judgmental, etc. in these ways. I then will counter with Scriptural instructions that tell us that we are to be more concerned with and more ready to call out the bad conduct within our own church family than with those outside the faith.

    In return, rarely do I get any engagement to these assertions. Rather they are often completely ignored and/or people will argue that Scripture tells us we are only to lift up the church and encourage our fellow believers and/or they just go on complaining about how bad the woke. liberals, etc. are and tell me I just don’t get it.

    And I am left wondering why anyone hardly ever engages what I have actually said.

  56. LInn says:

    As I mentioned in my previous comment, i”m a teacher in an elementary school. As I’ve gone through the comments, I’ve again been brought to that place where I want to go up on the roof of whatever building I’m occupying and shout, “We must stop playing the blame game and DO something!”

    We need to ban private citizens from owning assault rifles. We need to run better mental health evaluations to decide who can be a responsible gun owner and who cannot. We need a national gun ownership registry for those who are determined unfit to have a firearm.

    We can turn school, churches, shopping malls (choose your venue) into fortresses, but as long as an unstable person can get in with a gun, no one will be safe. Wringing our hands and yelling at each other doesn’t help…it won’t stop until we decide to stop it.

    When I first started doing active shooter drills at schools with young children, we told them that “bad dogs” were on campus and that they had to hide and be quiet so that they wouldn’t be bitten. Now we teach them to barricade the room and run for their lives if they have the opportunity. Instead of conquering the enemy, we have let him conquer us. I find it very shameful.

  57. Alan says:

    The Gospel is the only hope and the church is the only steward of the Gospel in the world.

    I Co 10 is instructive for this reality.

  58. Michael says:

    Alan,

    Glad we agree.
    Now I would also assert that the presence of the church and it’s demonstration of a Gospel life and obedience to Christ is designed to create an alternative society within a society for the sake of the attracting people to the kingdom of God.

    We are called to police our own ways lest we grievously misrepresent King and kingdom…and that should be our primary concern above all else.

  59. Michael says:

    KevinH,

    You are welcome here…always.

    What people actually object to isn’t usually what we write…they object thinking that their particular political ideology is being diminished or misrepresented.

    The idea that we could actually be writing about church concerns slips past in a fog…because they think their political ideology and the Word are the same.

  60. Captain Kevin says:

    “…they think their political ideology and the Word are the same.”

    I’ll say a sad Amen to that statement.

  61. The New Victor says:

    Per Linn’s earlier comment, bay area schools have erected fences and gates due to an increase in vandalism, thefts and radno people coming on campus during school hours. That the schools are a little more impenetrable to a shooter is good, but not 100% for a determined evil person. I tell the kids that a shooter is a near impossibility here, yet being injured or killed by a car as a pedestrian is a real concern. A 9 year old in a crosswalk was killed during school drop-off in a school near here recently. A perp also tried to abduct a 2nd grader near my daughter’s pre-k through 5th school last week. The kid was smart enough to run to a crossing guard who saw the van speed off, but couldn’t get a plate #. A few months ago, a rando adult chased my 7th grader and his buddies as they walked home from school, so they no longer do. There’s a sickening degradation going on all around.

  62. Everstudy says:

    “Pro gun Republicans appear to be the actual ”baby killers” in America.”

    And this is why we can’t have a rational discussion about the topic.

    “20% of child deaths are caused by firearms” is an example of how statistics can be framed to say whatever you want them to say.

    The study excluded children up to the age of 1 because there are more deaths in that age group that died from certain fatal conditions unique to children under a year old (4,403 deaths from congenital abnormalities, 3,141 deaths from preterm birth and low birth weight, and 1,389 deaths from sudden infant death syndrome). There were 11 infant deaths caused by a firearm in 2020.

    The use of the word “child” is also misleading, as traffic accidents kill far more kids 0-12 than gun violence, with the trend swapping at 13 and rising almost exponentially to the age of 19 (traffic: 970 (age 0-12), 2873 (age 13-19); firearms 422 (age 0-12) & 3946 (age 13-19).

    I think the situation here is multi-faceted; a mentally ill transgender woman, the apocryphal language of the current culture (if A happens, then something bad is guaranteed to happen; and the constant claim of trans genocide), and the loss of connections and those things that used to bind us together have all added up to this shooting.

  63. Duane Arnold says:

    Everstudy

    What number of childhood deaths from gun violence in a given year is acceptable?

  64. Everstudy says:

    None.

    But that’s not the point. If it was, we’d ban children from cars as well.

    My point was the predictable response of “Republicans are the baby killers” and the fact that we can’t have a reasonable discussion about it.

    In this instance, the media has shifted to blaming anyone but the shooter, saying that if it wasn’t for Christian anti-trans bigotry, or Tennessee banning child mutilation (aka gender affirming care), or for Republicans’ “love of guns”, this would not have happened. They can’t blame the shooter because she is part of the left’s victim class, and a victim cannot be a victimizer.

    Back to lurking…

  65. Duane Arnold says:

    “None”… and I would say that is exactly the point.

  66. Everstudy says:

    The point I was trying to make was about having reasonable discussion… but nevermind…

  67. Michael says:

    One can understand accidental deaths involved in transporting people…and we have passed all manner of laws to try to make transportation of children safer.

    I cannot understand how access to a gun for a child is in any way equivilent.

    I do not know what the “media” claims as there is media all over the political spectrum…but I blame the shooter…and a system that allows such easy access to the creation of death.

  68. Steve says:

    We are called to police our own ways lest we grievously misrepresent King and kingdom…and that should be our primary concern above all else.

    ___________________________________

    In other words, we should be open to correction when we err. Michael, this is so true but it starts I believe with ourselves as an individual. Lets not forget that Jesus did tell us to first remove the plank from our own eye before we remove the speck from our brothers. Somehow my comment made the top 10 most offensive comments of all time. I’m a bit puzzled and I’m still processing that. I take that criticism very serious and therefor will no longer post on your blog. I have similar seniments to Xenia. For, what it’s worth as I try to remove the log from my own eye, I do offer this. I believe you are in need of correction in both attitude and practice in some of your inflammatory comments that in my estimation can be misconstrued and cause tremendous harm. I can not judge your heart or motives, however, your outward expression of disdain for the church is deeply troubling. I’m not a pastor and take no salary. I’m not posting because I’m part of a power play or have strong political ideologies or alliances. I have neither.

  69. Michael says:

    Steve,

    I have people who can exercise authority over me.
    They have my phone number and none of them are afraid to use it.

    My position is simple…the New Testament demands all manner of conduct and discipline in the church community…and we ignore most of them to fight culture wars.
    The church has become as corrupt as any worldly organization.

    The primary responsibility of the Christian is not the rebuke of culture but the holiness of the church.

    My most inflammatory comment I will leave you with is that most Americans are so poorly taught that when you cite the standards and practices for what a church is, responses like yours are what I get.

  70. Michael says:

    When a black church was the target I don’t hear the “direct attack by the hordes of hell” narrative…nor when it has been a synagogue…nor does that narrative explain all the other children’s blood that has been shed…but it elevates one attack on a Christian school above all the others in terms of importance.

    It’s the absurdity that somehow when the violence comes to us …then it’s important.

  71. Captain Kevin says:

    “…your outward expression of disdain for the church is deeply troubling.”

    That’s laughable at best. You have no clue, Steve. It is Michael’s love for the church that has driven this site for more than two decades.

  72. Officerhoppy says:

    “ We are called to police our own ways lest we grievously misrepresent King and kingdom”

    While a true statement, it’s just not practical so we have laws and law enforcement officers. Our sin nature and its impulses never leave us—even with the indwelling HS. It’s always there waiting to cut us out at knees.

    We need a practical means to control gun violence. We can start by removing assuslt style weapons from common people’s hands.

  73. Michael says:

    CK,

    Thanks…perhaps I have not been clear enough…perhaps.

  74. Michael says:

    Officerhoppy,

    I’m not sure that’s possible…if so, it would be helpful.

    We have a cultural mythology around guns and a social environment that lends itself to absolute hostility…we need lots of work in a lot of areas…

  75. BrideofChrist, Janet Linn says:

    I’d just like to point out that the Senate Chaplain led a prayer in Senate Chambers a few day ago and he prayed out loud to God,”Lord, babies are dying in our schools….evil persists when good men do nothing… thoughts and prayers are not enough.” – his words not mine. Babies are being murdered by guns in public spaces in America. Pro gun Republicans are the enablers of this carnage. Children need to ride in cars to go to the doctor, to visit their grandparents, etc, so comparing car accidents to murder by firearms is absolutely ridiculous. Children shouldn’t have to die because men want to own guns. Your freedoms end when they infringe on others freedoms. Most Americans want more gun control and that’d an inconvenient fact for Republicans. I’d like to add that the words “baby murder” appeared previously in this very thread early on. Why is it okay for Republicans to use the term but not okay for anyone else to say what’s obvious? I have an 8 -month-old baby daughter I help care for, so I am fully aware of the impact of my words. I also have a grandchild in kindergarten and I taught elementary school for 30 years. I’ve done my share of stranger alerts and mock shooting drills with my second graders. It’s the stuff of nightmares. I don’t regret my previous post in anyway.

  76. Steve says:

    Michael, I hope your leaders call you. So much has to do with context. Lets weep with those who weep for this tragedy because this one is raw right now. There is a time and place for everything. The narrative you think I was portraying is wrong. Personally, I was deeply wounded in a PCA church many years ago. Its not like Im super fond of this denomination and call it my own now. The same denomination this recent Christian school shooting was part of. If I were to have read your comment at 8:48 who knows how that would have affected me over 25 years ago. Thank God he has healed me now but your rhetoric is dangerous. This is the invisible internal spiritual war I was alluding to. BTW, I agree with Kevin that every attack is like a spiritual war and I won’t diminish anybodies suffering.

  77. Michael says:

    Steve,

    As usual, you are unwilling or unable to address anything I write that falls outside your own narrative and experience.

    I am unwilling to address it any more than I already have on this thread.

    I think you made a wise decision to stop posting here and I commend you to some place you find more felicitous.

  78. Steve says:

    Michael,. Your attitude towards me is sad. It’s obvious your unwilling or unable to be corrected. Love you brother.

  79. Michael says:

    Steve,

    I don’t believe I need corrected…I believe you were and are wrong.
    So far, you have not engaged my statements in the least.

    You don’t love me and I don’t love you…let’s not spiritualize a simple dispute.

  80. Michael says:

    Someone has actually sent in some correction.
    I confess that I am harsh to Steve as I find him very frustrating in every way.
    My apologies for the harshness…but I will no longer engage with him.

  81. Steve says:

    Michael,. It’s not a simple dispute. If we don’t love each other it’s a huge deal. I do whole heartedly agree with your 9:20 comment about reading the bible and doing what it says. I’ll leave it at as the only thing we can agree on.

  82. Josh says:

    I am for removing the getting rid of the second amendment. That amendment has been abused to the point that it no longer has any use. Lets dump it, and then start a real conversation on gun control.

  83. Michael says:

    I’m not sure real conversations are possible anymore…guns are a symbol of freedom to too many…and I’ve never felt less free in my lifetime…

  84. Rob Murphy says:

    Yeah, the church with the school in the state with the hostile policies and gun laws are to blame.
    I don’t know what I dislike more, the insipid writing or the inflammatory logical fallacies. Alan, Steve, Xenia, good on you trying to bring reason. I see only an amplification of the eclipse of Christ based on fallen or flawed followers and that amid a eucharist of the bread of twisted statistics and a bitter wine of disdain for the bride of Christ.

    These folks made shirts, too. But I’m not supposed to notice reality.
    https://www.transradicalactivistnetwork.org/transdayof-vengeance

  85. Michael says:

    In all my insipid writing, I have not blamed anyone but the shooter. Because the vast majority of shooters have been straight, white males, I’m not sure how we address this properly.

    I’ve fought for the bride for too many years…and I’ll continue.

  86. Duane Arnold says:

    Speaking of statistics… Gun violence thus far in 2023…
    https://www.gunviolencearchive.org

  87. Jean says:

    “That amendment [the 2nd] has been abused to the point that it no longer has any use”.

    Certainly no use helpful or beneficial to the sanctity of human life, the maintenance of law and order, or preservation of a democratic Republic.

  88. Kevin H says:

    Over the years I have had people comment on something I have written, telling me my writing is boring or too long and nobody reads it. Now it’s “insipid”. Makes me wonder why the very people who find me so boring and so insipid seemingly continue to read? Surely if it was so, they wouldn’t even waste their time reading. Or maybe they just don’t like it and feel the need to insult it, and that’s the best they can come up with.

    Speaking of insults, Rob, rather than engaging with written content, you choose to just come with insults and accusations, along with a jab at a group you find to be an enemy in the culture wars. You have capably demonstrated the very spirit that I spoke of in my original article.

    I will gladly take the insults and continue with my insipid writing if it is the result of being faithful to what God has prompted me to do and striving for His Kingdom.

  89. Michael says:

    Kevin,

    I’m thinking of changing the blog title to “Insipid”…then they can’t say we didn’t warn them… 🙂

  90. Michael says:

    Honestly, it is painful when Rob addresses me this way.

    We were once friends.

    What I won’t do is question his love of Jesus or the church…we define both radically differently, but that would be a hollow accusation for the sport of conflict.

    The fact that he won’t grant the same grace is something we’re used to.

    I’m going to keep doing what I do and hope Kevin remains here and faithful to his calling with us.

  91. Kevin H says:

    Michael, churches these days are always trying to come up with catchy names, why can’t we do the same for the blog? 🙂

  92. Michael says:

    Kevin,

    Exactly…we already have one vote for it!

  93. pstrmike says:

    Reading this thread nods me of Stephen Stills song For What it’s Worth…..” nobody’s right, if everybody’s wrong.”

    A more recent live version:

    https://youtu.be/zkbEJUpPPbc

    But I’ll give each of you credit for trying to bring something to the table. I have no answers. I don’t even know if I’m asking the right questions……. But I question how many of you are actually listening to the other side…..

  94. DH says:

    ” I don’t think there has been a pure or innocent church era”

    Well then, what is Julie Roys going to Restore us to, she said she is Restoring The Church with Truth.

    I thought Jesus is the Truth.

  95. DH says:

    I have to kinda challenge that most mass shooters are white males. the perimeters they set are basically a shooter has to kill at least four that he/she doesn’t know… so a drive-by that kills two gang members and only “injures” 7 kids isn’t in the “statistics”.

  96. Josh says:

    Oh boy. The racists have arrived.

  97. Alan says:

    Collectivized guilt is the direction of this discussion. That’s the credo of the current atheistic religion.

    Guilt and stain remain front and center but we have no redemption. Even here this discussion is about how to smear someone while remaining free of stain.

    We join the world in flying new banners that obscure the blood of the lamb on the doorpost. We signal our innocence according to the demands of this Christless cultural accounting system.

    Rainbows await our adoption but only blood stones. That’s why humans go to war.

  98. Alan says:

    *atones

  99. Michael says:

    Alan,

    That is only the case if you’re reading the thread the all the current paradigms…in which case the blame falls solely on you for using those lenses.

    My critiques (and Kevin’s, I believe) echo those of the Lord through the prophets and the Apostles and our Lord through the epistles.

    In my opinion, we have never needed to amplify those echoes more.

    What is really being argued is the place and purpose of the church…that is my passion…because it is the passion of Jesus…I’ll engage that argument with those who choose to bring something to the table.

  100. Michael says:

    I don’t think it’s racist to bring up the question of gang related crime, but it should be brought up categorically, not to point out that “it’s not just us”… just as I think that it is not beyond question to ask why America has this problem and most other nations don’t…

  101. Kevin H says:

    “Guilt and stain remain front and center but we have no redemption.”

    I reference for you, the concluding sentence in my article – “May God bring repentance, healing, and restoration to us, a people in need.”

  102. Alan says:

    Sorry your blanket condemnation obscures your faint attempt to cover your intent.

  103. Josh says:

    Dh’s last comment is racist. It assumes that black people are involved in drive-bys and gang shootings. Its a stupid “us vs. them” mentality, “look, they are just as bad”. Is this article about gang violence or a school shooting? Why was gang violence brought up? Oh, because black people do it, apparently.

    No, that’s not racist at all.

  104. Josh says:

    If we can’t issue a banket condemnation against school shooters without a whole bunch of apologies, then we are just a little too soft.

  105. Michael says:

    Now we are able to discern intent despite clarification…amazing.

  106. Michael says:

    Josh,

    I understand your argument…but I also understand this other side.

    There is a belief that all evil is being blamed on old white men…and other societal evils are ignored to pursue that agenda.

    Thus the outrage over Jan 6 compared to the BLM riots…white school shooters vs. the gang violence in Chicago and other cities…we need to hear what people are actually saying, not react as the prevailing culture demands…

  107. Michael says:

    My guess would be that statistically far more gang shooters are black or Hispanic than white…that is simple numerical fact….just as the numbers for mass shooters are statistically white…

  108. Kevin H says:

    Alan,

    Since you seemingly know what my intent is better than I do, please share.

  109. Josh says:

    Its not equivalent. You don’t solve the school shooting problem by saying “Look what the black people are doing.” Again, racism 101. Do I understand it? Sure. I grew up in a small town in the south. Is it still racist? Absolutely.

    Its amazing that old white guys have run the world for, oh, as long as we know, and everyone else has taken crap for eternity. Now, give the slightest pushback against the old white guys and the pearl clutching is instantaneous.

    Without reading the article I could have told you Alan and Rob’s responses. Soft.

  110. Michael says:

    I don’t think it’s necessarily racism…it’s a desire not to be saddled with all the blame for the sad state we’re in.

    If we’re going to solve any of these problems (and I doubt we will) we have to have a holistic sense of law and civil order…

  111. Josh says:

    Heavy is the head that wears the crown. If you are going to forcibly run the world for centuries, you are going to take a lot of blame when stuff breaks down. Its all part of the game.

    Personally, when I see a white kid goes and shoots up a school it doesn’t make me feel any better to go find a black person who is doing what I deem to be an equally evil act.

  112. Michael says:

    Josh,

    Maybe it’s time to deal with where we’re actually at and how to move forward…we can and should acknowledge past sins but that won’t change the future…and the future looks pretty bleak from where I sit.

  113. Josh says:

    But anyway, that’s beside the point. Gun control would work for school shooters, gang members, domestic violence, etc. I’m against every form of killing.

  114. Josh says:

    Again, I only addressed it because DH came on to remind us how bad the blacks are. It had nothing to do with this case, and acknowledging such helps none in solving the school shooting problem.

  115. Michael says:

    How does gun control work when there are already more guns in circulation than people who live in this country?

    I have no issue with common sense gun laws…but the devil is in the details.

    We have to address the environment in which all these guns live…

  116. Michael says:

    Josh,

    I hear you…but calling someone a racist has become a form of curt dismissal , just as we dismiss people for being “liberals” or “Trumpers” or any other shorthand to keep our silos pure…it’s not working…

  117. Kevin H says:

    Cultures that are primarily white and primarily black in this country both have significant violence problems, although in somewhat differing ways.

    When trying to deal with the violence that is prominent in one culture, it does no good whatsoever to point out, “Yeah, but they do it, too.”

    Given that white people have long lorded power (and sometimes even horrific abuse) over black people in our country’s history, it is particularly arrogant, callous, and obtuse when white people feel the need to point to something wrong in the black culture when confronted with something that is wrong in their culture.

  118. Josh says:

    Yes Kevin! Well said. Perfect!

    Now, off the racist thing and back to gun control – You have to start somewhere. Stop the manufacture and selling of these weapons is point 1. Stricter background checks, etc is another step. Getting these guns off the street is another. Repeal the 2nd Amendment. Whole lot of things we can be doing that are better than doing nothing.

  119. Kevin H says:

    I think better gun control would have some positive effect on gun violence in this country. But, yes, given the great proliferation of guns in this country, it’s hard to see how much that effect would really be. One thinks it will take a great amount of years (talking generations) from when significant gun reforms are put in place until they start having a truly significant effect.

    There is also the risk that because there are so many guns in circulation, if severe restrictions or confiscations are put in place, it will end up with an uneven proportion of the “bad guys” having guns compared to the “good guys”, as law abiding citizens will abide by the rules while criminals will find ways to circumvent the rules and still keep or acquire guns. It is possible that such a scenario could even make things more dangerous, at least for a time period.

    But I agree, despite the difficulty of the task and the potentially long timeframes until we would start to see significantly positive effects, we still need to start somewhere.

  120. Duane Arnold says:

    Our arguments tend to be in the abstract. This article examines the real results of being on the wrong side of an AR15…
    https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/02/what-i-saw-treating-the-victims-from-parkland-should-change-the-debate-on-guns/553937/

  121. Jean says:

    “How does gun control work when there are already more guns in circulation than people who live in this country?”

    If one disgruntled employee, one troubled youth, one abusive spouse, one anarchist,
    and/or one racist is is prevented from obtaining a weapon on a whim, (1) hundreds of lives a year will be spared, and (2) our first responders will be respected by the citizenry.

    We can’t do nothing because of the magnitude of the problem. We can only do our best today, for the sake of ourselves and our future generations.

  122. DH says:

    Even if Michael’s ‘statistics’ were correct, which they are not, under those metrics only 54% of white males do “mass shootings”, which is skewed terribly by any metric

  123. DH says:

    Josh said telling the truth is racist.

    Musicians have a fantasy mind sometimes.

  124. Josh says:

    Yeah! That’s what Josh said! And since everything here is written communication, I should be able to scroll up and see exactly where he said that!

    Except he didn’t say that.

  125. Kevin H says:

    DH,

    I refer you to my comment at 11:15am on March 31.

    Maybe you’re not racist, but one should be aware when they make comments like yours at 11:45pm on March 30, it very well can give that impression.

  126. Alan says:

    When you call someone racist the discussion is over. That’s a good place to start repenting. Don’t do that.

    In my case I can ask Kevin what he means instead of telling him. That’s fair. Kevin I can accept that you were willing to begin with yourself when you say “we.”

  127. Officerhoppy says:

    I dunno…kinda easy to throw the word “racist” around. If I said I don’t like black licorice I’d probably be labeled racist.

  128. Josh says:

    Ah yes, the unforgivable sin of recognizing racism.

  129. Kevin H says:

    Alan,

    Thank you for asking. Yes, I do begin with myself when I say “we”. I get quite disturbed when seeing the public-facing and public-interacting behavior of many of my fellow evangelicals and so I must keep trying to check myself in regards to my attitudes and expression of words to them that I stay focused on speaking truth and honoring God and not that I just want to denounce and complain to make myself feel better or superior. Also, I will regularly use the word “we”, whether it be addressing a very broad audience of Americans in general, or a little more specific audience such as theologically and even politically conservative evangelicals because I consider myself to be part of those families. So I am speaking to my own, and not “them”.

    I decry so many of the ills of the church not because I hate the church but rather because I love the church and I desire to see her honoring God and holding up a good witness of Jesus Christ. As I have grown in my adulthood, I have come to recognize many of the foibles that go on in my family of American conservative evangelicals that are at best unhealthy and at worst seriously immoral. Over the last several years, these foibles have seemingly increased exponentially in both number and intensity. Although I may fail at times to express it as such, it is out of love that I exhort the church to cast off the snares in which she is entangled and to follow after God and His ways.

    I also take seriously the commands in Scripture that judgment begins in the house of the Lord and that we are to be far more concerned with the behavior of our own than of those outside of us. Thus, that is why I reserve the majority of my denouncement and exhortation for my family of believers….. for “us”, rather than “them”. All the more, as I survey Christian behavior through personal experiences and also what is publicly visible, I find that there are far more Christians who are focused on the behavior of “them”, rather than themselves or their own, and I seek to set an example (although far from perfectly) of a more Christ-honoring perspective and conduct, even it is not well received by many. In no manner whatsoever do I claim any kind of equivalency, but I am emboldened by the examples set by the prophets of old, who although they were many times rejected by God’s own people, they stayed faithful to speaking the messages that God gave them.

    I hope this brings more clarification to my true intentions and motivations.

  130. Alan says:

    Thanks Kevin — I will come back to this with more time

    Josh —ego te absolvo

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