Things I Think…

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44 Responses

  1. Dan from Georgia says:

    I probably have more concern and fear about the apostate church than the secular culture myself.

    When parishoners complain that Jesus is too weak and “woke” because he talked about turning the other cheek, what is left?

    When “God and Guns” is proclaimed around here in Dixie, the really mean “GUNS and god”.

    When a writer claims that the Holy Spirit was present at the January 6th, 2021 “gathering” at the mall in DC, the word “blaspheme” comes to mind”.

    When all you hear over the last 20-30 years is “take back our country” and “this is the most important election in our nations history”, no wonder there is an apostate church.

  2. Michael says:

    Dan,

    Excellent summary…

    The real work is yet to begin…how do we build faithful churches that are places where such is not welcome?
    They already exist of course…but we need more and more voices centered on the Gospel…

  3. Patrick Kyle says:

    Sorry brother, #6 Bears false witness regarding most of us and the movement in general. Most CN’s I know despise our BS brushfire wars/conflicts waged only for profit and to shore up a staggering empire. What gets me is the unspoken belief by those opposing CN that the enemies of Christ are morally and ethically superior to Christians in regards to leading our country. All I hear is Christians being terrified at the thought of Godly, wise men running our country, and arguments and excuses piled sky high, and books written about why we are better off with the enemies of Christ running the show. Strikes me as bearing false witness against the Lord’s people and a despising of our brothers in Christ. Spin it how you like, at it’s base. that’s exactly what it is.

  4. Michael says:

    Patrick,

    Christian nationalism is a heresy…period.

    One need only look at the champions the movement has chosen…immoral grifters for the most part.

    In the biblical scheme, this nation will go the way of all empires…beasts opposed to Christ.

    No one I know would have an issue with godly men running our country…I just haven’t seen any of the sort promoted…

  5. Duane Arnold says:

    Michael

    Crossed posts…

  6. Michael says:

    Duane,

    and still true today…

  7. Officerhoppy says:

    “Christian nationalism” is an oxymoron, don’t you think?

  8. Michael says:

    Officerhoppy,

    Yep.

    It’s basically baptizing some conservative views…some that I may agree with, in fact….but theocracys have passed…

  9. LInn says:

    i look back at ancient Rome, where the emperor had literal “free reign” to do whatever he wanted. Paul didn’t ask believers to either overthrow the emperor or to try to get a more godly one into office. Paul did instruct believers to a) pray for rulers so that they (the Christians) could lead peaceful and quiet lives pleasing in the sight of God (1 Tim. 2:1-2); b) submit to the rulers who were in power because they represented an authority that came from God (Rom. 13:1-2); to live quiet lives that glorified God so as to win the respect of outsiders (1 Thes. 5:11-12). The type of American politics currently practiced is very far from this model.

    I know there are times when resistance to the government from Christians is necessary (I shall go to the Hebrew midwives, Daniel, Daniel’s friends, and the wise men for my defense of occasional civil disobedience). However, in all of these examples, they were respectful of the authority in power, but insistent on what the ultimate Authority required from them.

    I find Christian nationalism abhorrent. I often wonder what would happen if Christians did less campaigning and more at church and the community. That might really transform the USA!

  10. Michael says:

    ” I often wonder what would happen if Christians did less campaigning and more at church and the community. ”

    In a few years that we be our only choice…and we should be making it now.

  11. LInn says:

    Michael-I agree!

  12. Captain Kevin says:

    Dan and Linn, great comments.

  13. Captain Kevin says:

    #2 – How can someone consider Jesus a loathsome weakling and still even think to call themselves Christian. Do they even believe the New Testament? Perhaps Islam would be a better choice for them.

  14. Captain Kevin says:

    #8 – Hmmm… interesting question. I believe genuine moves of the Spirit have definitely happened. The type of “revival” that many are pushing for now would not fall into that category.

  15. Michael says:

    CK,

    You nailed it…Islam advocates many of the same tactics for “God”…

  16. Michael says:

    Let me add something here I should have added sooner.
    I’ve “known” Patrick Kyle online for a long, long, time.

    He’s a good man, a great family man, and a brother…we disagree strongly on many things, but I will not speak negatively of him.

  17. Reuben says:

    4, 5, and 6!!!

    Especially 6! What the RO and Stalin did is precisely what MURICA wants today.

    7, I agree with the not bold print. The bold print is wrong. This is a nation built on religion, worse than Muslim nations, but not “built on religion”. The intent was to separate the law from the religion, however, the both have become one and the same. And it will get worse. Any strides to separate the two have been deteriorating since day one. At least England has made the state church as symbolically pointless as the Royals.

    Thanks for bringing thoughts to my head today that are not what they have been the last few weeks!

  18. Michael says:

    Reuben,

    Hopefully, this was somewhat of a diversion.

    Praying for you and James…you are carrying loads I can’t conceive of…but you know that.

  19. Reuben says:

    Excellent diversion. Something I have been looking for a lot lately. I sleep at night with HULU or Netflix on, just enough noise to put me to sleep, not enough to keep me awake. I still can’t bring myself to touch her things. I had to use her phone number 30 minutes ago to pay a bill over the phone. It hurt to recite it. Work is horrible these days as hot as it is, I’m an HVAC guy. But it keeps me occupied for at least 8 hours a day. I try to listen to a morning radio show on my phone when I have the chance. It’s the silliness of the show that keeps me preoccupied for a while. They ask dumb questions, I text in with dumb answers. I have gotten to know the radio show hosts. They text me since my wife died, always encouraging me. My son and I talked today about my first traffic ticket and laughed on the way home from school. Then I paid bills with money I don’t have. Bought some dog and cat food and some milk. These are the worst days of our lives. Any distractions help. 7 got my wheels turning.

  20. Michael says:

    You are a good man, my friend…you and James will save each other.
    I’ll try to make more diversions…though I spend a lot of time diverting myself…

  21. Captain Kevin says:

    Reuben, I’d like to say I understand, but truth is I can’t even imagine what you’re going through. That’s cool that the radio show hosts text you. Praying for you and your son.

  22. Reuben says:

    Thanks Kevin!

    Michael, I know that need for diversion.

  23. Terry says:

    8 – Revival for Baptists = Arena filled with thousands saying the sinner’s prayer, most not for the first time. Revival for Pentecostals = Arena filled with people laughing uncontrollably, plus signs, wonders and unverified healings. Both can point to the book of Acts for examples that vaguely resemble their definition. (Note that first century arenas weren’t used for revivals)

    9 – Has me thinking about Matthew 7:21-23. “Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”

  24. Patrick Kyle says:

    Heresy? Really? Suit yourself. Stew in your bitterness. Bye.

  25. Michael says:

    Patrick,

    What an odd response…but a sadly telling one.

    My statement is a theological one…one that I am willing to vigorously debate.
    CN is heresy…that is a theological statement.
    Your responses have all been personal and and insulting….and weird.

    I think we all pray for godly and wise leaders, but I suspect that breed has died.
    I’m not bitter about anything these days, except maybe about the treatment of cats at the local shelter.

    You’re welcome to engage again with ideas that actually address the topic…

  26. Kevin H says:

    A lot of good people unfortunately get wrapped up in heresies. One of the particular drawbacks to this current popular heresy of Christian Nationalism is the embracement of combative, insulting, duplicitous behavior, which is epitomized in its adopted leader. Having honest, civil, rationalized discussions are also usually frowned upon as such are not seen as leading to “winning”.

    Another difficulty with this heresy is that it is a bit difficult to clearly to bound or define. Desiring godly people in political leadership or thinking America is a Christian nation just in a sense of the Christian heritage of its people is not Christian Nationalism. However, somewhere along the sliding scale where desires for godly leaders starts leading to the abandonment of Christian principles for purposes of gaining power and belief in an American Christian nation leads one to believe that Christianity should be favored or empowered by our government over other religions or no religion at all, the heresy of Christian Nationalism begins.

  27. Michael says:

    Well said, Kevin.

    I still get surprised by the emotions this subject raises….it seems like people want to frame this in war like terms…

  28. pslady says:

    #9 Much to ponder when Christians in China & other nations are experiencing real persecution….will we be able to stand firm in Jesus Christ if that would happen here.

  29. Michael says:

    pslady,

    I don’t believe so…because our faith isn’t grounded in Christ, but in our system.

  30. PM says:

    @Kevin- I snipped your post above. It is one of the best statements on how good intentions and desires to have godly leaders shifts into CN and what I observe as a “win at great(all?) cost” mentality. Very good

  31. Kevin H says:

    Thanks, PM. Snip away.

  32. Duane Arnold says:

    The issue is theological, hence, heresy. Those involved in Christian nationalism want to make the issue political. Therefore, they have a sense in which a theological category does not apply. Christian nationalism is antithetical to Christian faith, pure and simple.

  33. Jean says:

    Kevin, You wrote:

    “Another difficulty with this heresy is that it is a bit difficult to clearly to bound or define.”

    It is difficult for a few reasons, but beginning with “What does it mean to be a Christian in the public square?”, I think right there you would have an impossible time defining just this question.

    If you get right down to brass tacks, I don’t think an authentic Christian nation could survivie in this world. For example, what differentiates Christianity from Judaism or Islam, is the radical love and forgiveness that God gives freely to the ungodly of all nations, which as forgiven repentent sinners, we are commanded in turn to give freely our neigbhors (yes, even our enemies). Somewhere it is written, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Now I ask you, Could a nation operate this way in this world and survive for even a single year?

    Therefore, I don’t think Christian Nationalism actually has anything to do with Christianity, because it is an impossibility, but with something else, something un-Christian actually. I do not like the word “Christian” being associated with this movement.

  34. Michael says:

    Duane,

    I concur…but you knew that… 🙂

  35. Michael says:

    Jean,

    Very well said.
    It would be impossible for an authentic Christian nation to survive for exactly the reasons you give.

    You are also correct that CN has nothing in reality to do with Christianity.

  36. Jean says:

    By the way,

    If people think society would benefit from having more Christians in it, then participate in and support (financially and with time and talents) your local church, because that is where Christians are made and nurtured, not by any government bearing the sword. Those are to different lanes.

  37. Linn says:

    Jean,
    God’s plan has always been the local church (although people do a great job of messing it up!). But, where you find strong local churches, you usually find a beneficial, strong local influence. The churches in my area that people respect the most are the ones that run tutoring programs, food pantries, recreation programs, and senior services that are open to the entire community, not just the church. But, the big secret to these programs/ministries is that they are also vehicles of spreading the gospel. They aren’t “let’s ram the message down your throat while you pack your groceries”, but consistently sharing the message of the Savior who loves them, and that the people who serve in the ministry love them because of the love they have for Jesus.

    I’ve worked in several such ministries (one where I worked full-time running my little preschool in a garage/after school tutoring programs and currently in my church where I help with children’s ministry in Spanish, translate for various large event outreaches, and head up our ESL program). I constantly meet people who started coming to our church food distribution, tutoring, ESL-and started to attend and came to faith. We don’t water down the gospel at all, but people who are looking for God really want to know the “whole” gospel, not just that we can do nice things for them.

  38. Jean says:

    Hi Linn,
    Your last comment has brought me a lot of encouragement. Thank you!

    You are blessed (and a blessing) to Iive in such a caring and impactful community. Your church reads like the light that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 5.

  39. LInn says:

    Jean,
    My church is one of many like-minded churches in my area. We are in an area that is considered a “church desert” because so many churches have closed or become so small that they really struggle. But, the churches that are serving in their communities seem to be holding their own. It takes intentionality and leadership that is willing to see beyond the four walls of the church.

  40. Muff Potter says:

    RE: Nr. 6 up-top:
    I am immensely glad and I bless providence that church and state do not ride in the same cart here in America.
    If they did, it would be as brutal a regime as any the world has seen.
    The Founders of our Nation were very smart men to ensure that the two (church and state), never get entwined.

  41. Ben Bogard says:

    # 8 – I think one could make a pretty good case for Acts 19 showing a revival in Ephesus.

    17 And this became known to all the residents of Ephesus, both Jews and Greeks. And fear fell upon them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was extolled. 18 Also many of those who were now believers came, confessing and divulging their practices. 19 And a number of those who had practiced magic arts brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. And they counted the value of them and found it came to fifty thousand pieces of silver. 20 So the word of the Lord continued to increase and prevail mightily.

  42. Michael says:

    Muff,

    I concur…

  43. Michael says:

    Ben,

    I think you have made an excellent point…worth looking into further.
    Thanks!

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