Frederick Meekins is an independent theologian and social critic. He holds a BS from the University of Maryland in Political Science/History and a MA in Apologetics & Christian Philosophy from Trinity Theological Seminary. Frederick holds a Doctor of Practical Theology through the Master's Graduate School Of Divinity in Evansville, Indiana. Dr. Meekins is pursuing a Ph.D. in Apologetics through Newburgh Theological Seminary.

Saturday, November 29

Combative Ministries Dreaming Of A Disputatious Christmas

An old adage warns that, the more you do for people, the more they you know what all over you.

Actor turned evangelist Kirk Cameron may be becoming personally acquainted with that classic truism.

Merging these divergent vocations, Cameron has produced a documentary examining the Christian origins or at least basis of Christmas.

Surprisingly, some of the harshest criticisms are not coming from the militant secularists or even outright atheists but rather from Cameron's fellow believers.

Cameron is coming under condemnation for including in his film a segment on Santa Claus being inspired by Bishop Nicholas of Myra.

It is from this figure that the legend of St. Nicholas is derived.

But instead of commending Cameron for highlighting little known facts of church history, according to ChristianNews.net, Mike Gerndon of Proclaiming the Gospel Ministries is peeved that Cameron kept his presentation on an ecumenical level and did not go all Jack Chick in exposing the jolly red elf's Roman Catholicism.

The evangelist is quoted as saying in an article posted 11/12/14. “The fact that the Roman Catholic Church made Nicholas a saint should be a red flag to anyone who knows only God can convert sinners to saints by the sovereign work of His Spirit.”

Does it really matter if Nicholas was Roman Catholic or not?

It's not like there were many other churches to pick from in his time if one wanted to express one's religious faith in terms of an orthodox Biblical theology.

However, for Gerndon, even getting his rear this high up on his shoulders is not enough.

His joy this time of year seems to be derived apparently by attempting to ruin every one else's holiday season.

Gerndon continued, “Born again Christians should not be joining Roman Catholics in any spiritual...activity. Paul called on us to remain separate from the unbeliever. When people say 'Merry Christmas'....They are mixing the holy name of Christ with a pagan holiday and a blasphemous representation of Christ on an altar.”

Like many other conceptual formulations, Christmas is imbued with the meaning that we put into it.

By saying “Thursday” or “Saturday”, are fundamental Evangelicals rendering homage to the pagan deities for which those particular days are named?

Scripture urges to call upon the name of the Lord and be saved.

At no time is salvation dependent upon how vehemently one opposes those historic points and personalities where this particular understanding of the faith intersects with another with which it is at times at distinctive variance.

By Frederick Meekins

Sunday, November 23

Should Churches Be Subsidized For Preaching Politically Correct Propaganda?

In compliance with the state mandate to curb storm water run off, the Prince George's County Department of the Environment is considering a proposal that would waive the unpopular impervious surface property tax assessment for their properties if churches agree to preach environmentally friendly sermons or engage in other forms of mental conditioning.

What's the big deal, some will ask.

After all, does the Bible not teach us to be good stewards of God's creation?

God's word also instructs the believer to be on guard against wolves in sheep's clothing.

If governments grant tax code favors to religious organizations for ideological compliance in regards to one issue, what is to prevent them from doing so in regards to more controversial matters?

In the name tolerance and diversity, what if governments granted tax and regulatory relief to congregations supporting gay marriage?

What if a government wanted to promote pluralism and inclusion by lavishing all manner of benefits upon a church that agreed not to lift the name of Jesus above all names but instead only reference a nondescript generic God or no God at all but rather just the Ultimate Concern as formulated by Paul Tillich?

How about putting the shoe on the other foot for a moment?

What if to bolster declining birthrates a government lavished tax favors upon churches promising to preach prolife messages?

It is said that the power to tax is the power to destroy.

Advocates insist that that the program is strictly voluntary.

However, government programs that start off voluntary can easily end up becoming mandatory.

Anybody remember the assurances of if you like your healthcare plan you can keep your healthcare plan?

From one perspective, the program is completely voluntary with no government shocktroops raiding churches failing to put in the environmental upgrades or enunciating church dogma in such a way to win the approval of the state (at least not yet anyway).

Yet from another perspective, aren't churches that refuse to have their very thoughts policed in this manner punished by having to pay the tax?

Courts have forbidden graduation prayers for being less of a mental intrusion.

By Frederick Meekins

Pastor Badgers Congregation To Boycott C.S. Lewis

In a series of sermons against C.S. Lewis posted at SermonAudio.com, Pastor Jason Cooley creates the impression that it is wrong to read that particular author's works because of areas in which the famed scholar's theology was deficient by the standard of Biblical orthodoxy.

So why is it not wrong for the pastor to have either read these works or to have familiarized himself with this material?

At one point in the sermon, Pastor Cooley shouts like a lunatic asking if anyone in the congregation still wants to read the disputed books or watch movies inspired by these particular texts.

And what if someone responded back “YES!”

In this series of sermons, Pastor Cooley insisted that the title alone of “The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe” ought to be enough to get the believing Christian to avoid the book.

So if witches are evil, what is wrong with casting one in the role of the villain?

Maybe that role should instead, as in the case of many of Stephen King's works of speculative literature, be reserved for ultralegalistic ministers attempting to assert too much control over their congregations and parishioners.

From the sermons, it becomes increasingly apparent that, while Pastor Cooley has a commendable grasp of these areas where caution regarding Lewis would be prudent, the minister does not have much appreciation for the techniques of the literary arts.

This is particularly evident in regards to the scenes Cooley analyzes of Lucy's encounter with the fawn Mr.Tumnus.

For example, Rev. Cooley insists that, since fawns are noted in mythology for their seductive powers, that what Lewis is advocating are indecent carnal relations between underage minors and demoniac spirit beings.

Instead, the greater truth Lewis could be attempting to convey might be for the need to be cautious of that which we might initially find appealing if we consider the literary motif associated with the fawn and how the narrative plays itself out with Mr. Tumnus wanting to capitalize on his initial encounter with Lucy by handing her over to the White Witch.

Sometimes these unsettling realities that we are reluctant to face can be easier to grapple with or stick in the brain in the form of an engaging story rather than be constantly hollered at alone.

However, apparently Pastor Cooley is not much of a proponent of the old adage about a spoonful of sugar getting the medicine to go down.

In his tirades against C.S. Lewis, Pastor Cooley remarked that science fiction is nothing but witchcraft.

As justification for such a claim, Pastor Cooley posits that witchcraft consists of any power that does not come from God.

Once again, what Pastor Cooley possesses in terms of a desire to preserve sound doctrine he sadly lacks in literary understanding.

Admittedly, magic is often an intrinsic component of many forms of fantasy.

However, though science fiction can contain certain mystical elements such as the Force in Star Wars, over all, the genre attempts to provide a technological basis for the impressive wonders described in these works of imagination.

As such, though science fiction can be utilized to promote questionable philosophies, science fiction is morally neutral like most other forms of technology.

As such, does Pastor Cooley condemn the use of electricity or the internal combustion engine?

For though these are based upon natural forces set into motion by God's sustaining power, as in the case of literary speculation in conjecture like science fiction, these are the result of the human mind reflecting upon a fact or a concept and extrapolating from these to configure them in such a way as to result in an until then unrealized application or insight.

Interestingly, developers of these technologies expressed affinities towards ideas and affiliations perhaps even more questionable than those to which C.S. Lewis was drawn.

Henry Ford disseminated “The Protocols Of The Elders Of Zion” to promote his particular brand of anti-Semiticism.

Thomas Edison wasn't just at one time a member of Theosophical Society; his research into electricity was intermingled with speculation regarding spiritualist phenomena and communication.

Therefore, does that mean that to remain consistent with Pastor Cooley's call for a radical degree of separation, that Pastor Cooley must repent of his electronic ministries and instead must in faith rely only on those methods utilized by the Apostles in the early days of the Church?

By Frederick Meekins

Tuesday, November 18

Cosmologist Plots Theocide

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Are Pastafarian Accessories Protected Religious Apparel?

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Episcopals Forge Alliance With Islamists To Destroy America

Of the Muslim prayers allowed in the structure on 11/11/14, the National Cathedral posted on its Facebook page that the service was open only to attendees and interfaith guests.

So apparently the National Cathedral doesn't have a problem with religious exclusion when doing so promotes that institution's anti-Christian and anti-American agendas.

Would a radical Christian sect that opposed homosexuality be allowed to promote their particular theological viewpoint within that particular edifice with the vestry's blessing, especially if the sponsors or participants advocated the use of violence or extend moral approval to those utilizing such to achieve their socioreligious objectives?

Then why is this privilege being extended to Muslims having participated in such outrages?

Monday, November 17

Are Stores Open Thanksgiving Deserving Of Wide Scale Divine Retribution?

Granted, retailers opening on Thanksgiving might not have been the most family-friendly or magnanimous gesture in relation to their employees. However, the response on the part of certain theologians and critics might have gone a bit overboard.

In particular, one such condemnation intoned that from this alteration in commercial operational policy that America is an evil nation worthy of God's judgment.

So because Walmart was either open on Thanksgiving or opened their doors later that evening, nuclear destruction and annihilation or something comparable should rain down across the nation. That is, of course, what is usually meant by the euphemism of “God's judgment”.

To justify this hardline response to opening stores on Thanksgiving beyond simply frowning upon the decision to actively wanting to see lives ruined because of it, Biblical prohibitions regarding the Sabbath are often invoked.

The intentions might possess a nobility in that these sentiments attempt to construe all of reality through the light of God's word and theology derived from it. However, in terms of religious jurisprudence, the position falls a bit short in terms of serving as a platform upon which one can stand to look righteous in calling for blatant ruination and upheaval.

God no doubt delights when His children offer up gratitude for what He has provided and is angered when this appreciation is not evident. However, it does not follow that one cannot express gratitude in a scheduled ritualized manner prior to engaging in orderly commerce later that same day.

One might even claim that God does not really care one way or another to a great degree about the statutory observance of Thanksgiving Day. It may come as a surprise, but there is nothing found within the pages of the canon of Scripture demanding the observance be commemorated a particular Thursday in November.

It must also be asked to what extent do those enforcing Thanksgiving Day under the Mosaic regulations upholding the Sabbath want these punishments and prohibitions enforced? From Exodus 20:9-11, it is learned that the Sabbath is the seventh day of the week. Jehovah is quite explicit about this.

In our system of chronometric tabulation, Saturday is the Sabbath. What the vast majority of Christians celebrate each Sunday (especially in the morning) is technically not the Sabbath but rather the Lord's Day to commemorate the bodily Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

These have been conflated in the minds of many, especially those under the sway of a strict legalism. However, these days are not the same.

So are those demanding compulsory observance of the Sabbath willing to turn themselves over for execution should they find themselves violating the extensive prohibitions regulating the day? For according to Exodus 31:14, that is the stipulated punishment for those failing to observe the Sabbath of the seventh day if such a regulation still applies beyond Deuteronomical Israel.

When those attending compulsory Sabbath observations return home, do they intend to walk rather than operate a vehicle? For that is the extent to which the most observant Orthodox Jews adhere to the exactness of that divine decree. Senator Joseph Lieberman would not even place his own subway fair card into the electronic ticket-taker.

Furthermore, do those deliberating to make such a chore of relaxation intend to only eat leftovers from the night before or unheated prepackaged foods? Because if the true believing Christian must abide by every Biblical decree in excruciating detail for fear of befalling God's indignation, the preparation of consumables is forbidden as well.

Those more interested in ruining everyone else's celebration rather than simply maximizing their own will respond that simply pointing out what is said plainly in certain passages of Scripture downplayed as a result of those advocating them not wanting a greater majority of Christians to grapple with what is being said actually obscures the greater truth of the principle that is being conveyed. Fair enough.

If not for the principles conveyed by God to the Hebrew forefathers of the need for rest and reflection, mankind might have never comprehended the need for a work environment beneficial for all sides of the economic transaction. Before this revelation, for the most part laborers were little more than fodder to be worked until they dropped and quickly discarded.

However, are those insisting up a slavish adherence to the letter of the law really getting that point across when their homiletical formulations cause the listeners to stop and wonder if what really gets the motors of these scriptural exegetes running is rather body counts, the destruction of property, and overall social upheaval. For are not these in some form or another what is meant by the phrase “God's judgment”?

In these times of widespread debauchery and systematic subversion of Western culture, one usually tries to distance oneself from feminist critiques and condemnation of traditional religion. However, if one desires to be an honest observer of the human condition, one is forced to admit that only a man sitting back with his feet propped up would construe Thanksgiving Day as a Sabbath free from labor.

On the classic sitcom “Home Improvement” starring Tim Allen, one of the wittiest lines ever uttered on the series was verbalized when his sidekick Al Borlin quipped that dinner does not make itself. The remark was very similar to an observation made by my own mother.

If a man fails to realize that Thanksgiving is not some magical occasion where one of the most delicious dinners of the year just sprouts fully formed on the table in a manner akin to manna from Heaven, it is most likely that a woman in either the form of a wife, mother or even unwed concubine has spent much of the day laboring away in preparation.

Interestingly, those often complaining the loudest about the growing irreverence with which the day is treated are not absent from the kitchen because they are given over to the higher spiritual pursuits such as prayer, Bible study, or theological contemplation. Instead, they are plopped in an easy chair or on the sofa watching the most typical of entertainments. And I am not talking about the Westminster Kennel Club but rather NFL football.

The conspicuously religious claim that they are opposed to retailers being opened on Thanksgiving because their delicate consciences are disturbed by something so crass and base as mere commerce being transacted on such a solemn occasion. Then why do they have their peepers glued to the boob tube?

It is quite instructive that this contempt for free market exchange is limited to when it is engaged in by the laboring and servile classes. For the last time I checked, it is doubtful that the players, assorted team personnel, or the media conglomerates were putting on a complimentary exhibition game.

No doubt, millions upon millions of dollars exchange hands to orchestrate whatever number of games take place on this particular day. I am not really aware of the exact number. I usually watch the dog show while eating canned pasta just so I can say I had spaghetti for Thanksgiving.

So why are those deciding to go shopping on Thanksgiving more worthy of having death and misery inflicted upon them more so than those instead either attending the football game or even watching the event on television? Confronted so boldly about what it is that they are advocating, those previously enunciating a desire to see God's wrath dispensed over something as commonplace as going to the mall might attempt to linguistically backpedal by claiming that, in their call for judgment, they did not mean to wish misery or death upon those participating in a disputed activity or behavior.

I've pretty much been in or around Christian circles my entire life even if I don't feel welcomed within them entirely. The phrase “God's judgment” rarely has connotation other than that of sorrow and lamentation unless in rare instances where one is referencing the rewards that will be bestowed upon the believer for the good deeds they did honoring to Christ.

Furthermore, in the vast majority of instances, it's not like those participating one way or the other were prevented from enjoying the primary festivities of the Thanksgiving celebration or were not duly compensated in some manner.

For example, though likely not a universal beneficence bestowed on all employees, most laboring to make the sales happen were probably paid some kind of overtime. If not, such personnel were probably not compelled to work beyond their normal allotment of hours for that particular week. As such, they were payed with their scheduled adjusted to be off at another time.

Of even less moral concern ought to be the ones deciding to participate in these sales events on the consumer side of the transaction. For example, many of these sales were designated to commence well after the customary dinner hour.

As such, by that point in the evening, most would have already cogitated upon whatever thoughts of gratitude would have otherwise fired within their respective synapses. Most are in a turkey-induced catatonia, bloated and passing intestinal gas as they glare in a stupor into the television.

Interestingly, if we are raising the opposition to the opening of retailers on Thanksgiving to the level of Biblical law worthy of incurring divine retribution for violating, it must be pointed out that the commencement of these sales technically aren't even occurring on Thanksgiving. In the context of Hebrew culture and religious jurisprudence, the rendering of the day is not determined from midnight to midnight as occurs in the contemporary system. The day is instead rendered from sundown to sundown.

If one wants to be a stickler to Biblical detail, it must be noted that many of these Thanksgiving sales often commence well after dark. Therefore, under Sabbath prohibitions, it is no more immoral to shop from the disputed 8 to 11:59 PM than it would be during the 8 to 11:59 AM period Black Friday morning.

Those wanting to impose the Old Testament as binding civil legislation insist such must be done because God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. So if Americans deserve nuclear annihilation, plague, or whatever manifestation of the Apocalypse tickles your particular eschatological fancy for simply going to the store on Thanksgiving, should our nation also be destroyed for altering the method of rendering the days in compliance with the interpretative principle just enunciated?

It can indeed be upsetting to see what one perceives as our culture moving away from Godly foundations. However, enunciating a desire to see lives ruined and destroyed for such is probably a greater violation of explicit Biblical imperatives (such as the careful invocation of judgment) than the modification of a practice that (though commendable and worthy of continuation) is more of an interpretive application of the divine imperatives to begin with.

By Frederick Meekins

Religious Leftists Attempt To Turn Thanksgiving Into Socialistic Guilt Trip

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Apostate Clerics Bestow Blessing Upon Racailist Mob Violence

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Islamist Desecrating National Cathedral A Terrorist Sympathizer

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Thursday, November 13

How Much History Is One Obligated To Study?

Because God in Christ worked out the plan of salvation in a particular moment of time, I don’t see how it follows that the true Christian is obligated to have a lifelong love of history to the point where you read the discipline regularly.

Isn’t that akin to saying that if you don’t possess a physician’s or nurse’s level of knowledge of anatomy that you don’t appreciate the body as the temple of the Holy Spirit?

Everybody’s got different things they are interested in.

It is commendable to have a knowledge of church history.

But I don't see the point of laying on a guilt trip on those that really aren't into the topic as an avocation or hobby.

Should the bookworms not that great at math beyond balancing a checkbook be condemned for not being skilled in what is often described as the language in which God wrote the universe into existence?

It is commendable to have an understanding and appreciation for church history.

However, if one becomes to absorbed in the discipline, isn't there a danger of keeping stoked to too intense a degree ancient disputes of long ago?

Just how worked up should the believer still be over the Defenestration of Prague?

by Frederick Meekins

Legalistic Fanatics Condemn Kirk Cameron For Defending Santa Claus

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Wednesday, November 12

Church History Sermon Fails To Consider Profound Lesson

In a sermon on the importance of church history, it was argued that the church rather than the biological family was the primary social and psychological relationship in the life of the believer.

That might provide a degree of comfort if one's biological family is urging one to engage in blatantly anti-Biblical behavior.

However, such a grandiose sentiment itself needs to be circumscribed by carefully delineated boundaries.

You will always have a higher priority to those through whom you came into the world.

There is something downright shameful regarding some of these missionaries that will willingly die on behalf of the Pygmies in the African bush but hardly give a second thought to their aging parents here in America.

In classical Christian thought, this is the idea of subsidiarity, that your most profound obligations are to those closest to you.

Secondly, by insisting that a more profound loyalty is owed to one's church family than one's biological family can expose the gullible to a shocking litany of potential abuse on the part of church leaders.

For Jim Jones will live in infamy for conditioning numerous followers to place obedience to church structure over the well being of spouses and children, with the coercion and manipulation he subjected them to in the isolation of the jungle ending with hundreds dead.

It is a shame that a sermon purporting to admonish the need for the Christian to heed the lessons of history failed to take into account one of the twentieth century's most profound.

By Frederick Meekins

Rowan Williams Would Allow Teachers To Parade Around Classroom In Full Heathen Regalia

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Mormon Church Admits Founder Was A Sex Pervert

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Increasing Number Admit To Despising Compulsory Handshaking Rituals

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National Cathedral Surrendered To Islamists

Yes, these are Islamists.

If just interested in quietly practicing their Islamic faith, they'd simply find somewhere else to prayer.

Will women be allowed to participate?

The National Cathedral has embraced the libertine sexual agenda so wholeheartedly that the bells were rung following a Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage like a war had ended or a new monarch crowned.

How many mosques or Islamic centers are open to distinctively Christian prayers?

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A Biography Of Martin Luther

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Tuesday, November 11

Colorado Educators Prefer Students Discuss Legalized Pot Than Theology

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Ebola: The Blood Serpent & The Horsemen Of The Apocalypse

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For Thinking It's So Evil, Preachers Can Certainly Rattle On About Harry Potter's Specifics

In a discussion of the Harry Potter novels that was broadcast interestingly enough as part of the program that just days before heralded Larry The Cable Guy as a philosophical humorist on par with Will Rogers, the host lamented that 50% of all children in America have read at least one of the novels in that particular series and how said it was that many of the children claim to be Christian.

But what if a youngster, particularly as they move into the adolescent and teenage years, is able to discern spiritual truth from deception for themselves?

If that aptitude is irrelevant to the discussion, what about these ministers and teachers that go beyond the message that witchcraft is to be avoided but can themselves go into exacting detail regarding the plot twists of the Harry Potter saga that it is obvious that they have either read the books or seen the movies?

That is akin to simply not warning of the dangers of pornography but being able to critique how convincingly particular actors in that debauched genre are able to pull off roles as pizza delivery lads or coeds needing the dormitory plumbing snaked.

Should they be called upon to repent as well?

What gives this occupational class an exemption to research this material first hand but not the remainder of us?

If we are to be forbidden from investigating these things on our own, how do we know that the line they are pedaling us is really true?

By Frederick Meekins

Monday, November 10

The Dreadful Legacy Of Mark Twain

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Mark Twain's Battle Against God

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Researchers Hope To Respark Interest In Da Vinci Code Hooey

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Scandal Erupts That Consumation Of Duggar Wedding Insufficiently Prayed Over

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Will The Jesuits Brainwash The Gullible Into Surrendering To Extraterrestrial Invasion?

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Are Certain Evangelicals As Obsessed Over Sexual Identity As Radical Gay Activists?

Controversy has erupted over a Notre Dame University conference titled “Gay In Christ: Dimensions In Fidelity”.

The purpose of the meeting was to reflect upon and address those that embrace Catholic teaching on marriage and the family but also experience homosexual temptation.

But instead of encouraging those that are struggling to live the right way despite the desires of their flesh, some have instead decided to criticize the goal of reconciling these combating inclinations.

Ryan Dobson, the slovenly tattooed beatnik son of James Dobson of Focus On The Family, is quoted in a ChristianNews.net article as saying, “Sexuality is not an identity; sexuality comes from one's identity. My identity does not come from my intimate relationship with my wife; my identity comes directly from my relationship...with God.”

Those words can be a powerful encouragement for those struggling against this variety of sin --- both homo and heterosexual.

However, haven't those affiliated with Focus On The Family over the years such as James Dobson and Albert Mohler carved out for themselves lucrative niche ministries guilt tripping those not married by the age of 25?

In essence, these ministers and scholars have come dangerously close to reducing individuals to little more than their sexual identities.

In these circles, it is not simply enough to teach that heterosexual marriage is the only relationship in which the manifestation of carnal affections is not a profound sin.

On his broadcasts and audio recordings, Mohler has suggested that churches should actually interrogate and verbally harass young adult singles as to why they have not yet married.

Our identity is indeed grounded in Christ and not over what elicits a stirring in the loins.

As such, perhaps it is about time for churches to leave alone those that have not fallen into open sin in this area of their lives and lend sensitive support rather than condemnation to those that have requested assistance in battling these particularly vexing temptations.

By Frederick Meekins

Audio: Church's Opposition To Holidays Borders On The Cultic

Because God in Christ worked out the plan of salvation in a particular moment of time, I don’t see how it follows that the true Christian is obligated to have a lifelong love of history to the point where you read the discipline regularly. Isn’t that akin to say that if you don’t possess a physician’s or nurse’s level of anatomy that you don’t appreciate the body as the temple of the Holy Spirit? Everybody’s got different things they are interested in.

Wednesday, November 5

Christan Bale Damns Moses As Barbaric

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Present Shock: When Everything Happens Now

Disciples Of Christ Congregation Spices Up Hymn Sing With Free Booze

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Has The Pope Abandoned Christianity In Favor Of A Platonic Mormonism?

In addressing the Pontifical Academy Of Sciences, Pope Francis pontificated, “When we read about Creation in Genesis, we run the risk of imagining God was a magician, with a magic wand able to do everything. But that is not so.”

If this wasn't bad enough, Pope Francis further elaborated, “God is not a divine being or a magician, but the Creator who brought everything to life.”

In other words, Pope Francis is not so much a Christian but rather a Platonist.

Christianity holds that God brought forth the world from nothingness.

John 1:3 reads, “All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.”

Colossians 1:16-17 stipulates in concurrence, “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth...And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.”

Platonism, on the other hand, believes in accord with the assumptions hinted at in the Pope's statement that matter exists eternally and independent from God.

God merely reshaped to the best of His ability that which was already there.

Pope Francis is to be commended for his attempt to preserve the metaphysical freedom of human beings in playing a role in determining their eternal destiny.

But in positing the cosmology that he does, what guarantee are we provided that the system won't go spiraling out of control or that the promises made by God are even trustworthy?

For example, if God did not bring matter nor the laws governing physical substance into existence and is Himself subject to these limitations as inviolable standards rather than by His own volition, why ought we to believe that He is able to cause a virgin to conceive a son, and for that son to rise from the dead after dying upon a cross so that we might have the forgiveness of sins and beatific eternal life?

For are not these greater contraventions of how the universe operates than to bring the cosmos into existence within the span of six literal days?

In Luke 5 in the account where Jesus heals the paralytic lowered through the roof, Christ inquires in verse 23, “Whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Rise up and walk?”

Thus, if the laws of nature cannot be suspended as the Divinity sees fit, on what grounds ought we to believe that He really has paid our debts in full?

On old adage asks is the Pope Catholic.

Maybe so, but these days it seems that, in terms of his foundational presuppositons, he might be trending Mormon but hopefully with a much less active sex life. By Frederick Meekins

Tuesday, November 4

Understanding The New Testament

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Should We Abandon Or Reform American Protestantism?

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Church's Opposition To Holidays Borders On The Cultic

In the equivalent of the self-denunciation that occurs in a variety of cults and Vietcong prisoner of war camps, the congregation of Grace Fellowship Church in Davenport, Iowa celebrate assorted holidays by not only being harangued by their pastor as to what wretched Christians they are if they are caught participating in these festivities but they are also expected to confess to one another just how much they despise these occasions as evidenced by a number of sermons posted at SermonAudio.com..

In an anti-Halloween sermon, the pastor remarked that any parents that have taught their children about Santa Claus are guilty of having lied. He then remarked how delighted he was of his son for having responded to an inquiry that Santa Claus was a wicked elf from the north. So the moral of that story must be that falsehoods are acceptable then they advance the family theological agendas and pecularitiies.

In a sermon condemning Halloween and nearly all other holidays, the pastor suggested that if you enjoy the accouterments of a particular celebration, you can partake of it at another time of year. As an example, he suggested saving your marshmallow peeps until May or June.

But if you are required to live your life in such a controlled and contrived manner, aren't you still living still beholden to that particular holiday? And more importantly, isn't such an individual still seeking the approval of man rather than God?

In an anti-Halloween sermon, the pastor made the argument that Trick Or Treating was wrong because the custom encourages children to dress up as something they are not and to hoard something that “appeals to the flesh” (that being candy). So in the case of this preacher, it would not be a sin for him to dress as a donkey because he's certainly a dumb you know what.

In a sermon on Halloween, it was claimed that the customs of Halloween are designed to take children away from God at an early age. Couldn't something similar be said about legalistic churches and Christian schools pushing children away from God with too many nitpicky and asinine rules?

The pastor devoted a portion of his assorted tirades exposing that Frosty the Snowman was based on a lie. Who over the age of six believes he is real? Even the History Channel hasn't stooped that low yet. By singing about Frosty, you are no more worshiping Frosty than you would be worshiping Calijah The Wooden Indian or worshiping The Gambler by singing those classic songs.

Particularly unsettling and disturbing were the verbal confessions members of the congregation were expected to engage in order to receive approval and affirmation from the pastors and elders.

One gentleman confided how much he had wanted to celebrate Christmas the previous year but instead submitted himself to the eldership of the church. Buddy, the elders might have say as to whether or not the church building is decorated for Christmas. However, they don't have any say whatsoever as to what you do in your home.

In being prodded further by the leadership as to why he no longer celebrated Christmas, this individual responded because the authority in his life had instructed him as such. At no time did he clarify whether or not by that he meant the Holy Spirit or rather merely those holding position at church. If you are going to relent to pastoral control over your life to such an extent, please for the sake of your family, decide for yourself now if you are going to let the pastor sleep with your wife and molest your kids when he comes asking or drink the sour Kool Aid when he orders it.

Another seeking approval during this protocultic ritual admitted in her confession to tossing out a Fischer Price Nativity set because of the adoration her granddaughter exhibited towards the Baby Jesus figurine. The grandmother reflected, and rightfully so to a certain extent, that often we prefer the adorable Baby Jesus that is not a depiction of the Christ of wrath and judgment.

But shouldn't we be cautious about tossing out the messianic baby with the baptismal water? Isn't there a profound and beautiful truth in God in Christ condescending to our level by becoming one of us?

There are indeed both gentle and wrathful sides to God. And in the spirit of the Book of Ecclesiastes, there is a time and purpose to contemplate each of these under Heaven.

Would it be better to deny this obviously spiritually sensitive and receptive child the tender side of Jesus and instead replace Him only with the hard-edged disciplinarian Jesus that the most thoroughgoing Fundamentalists seem to have a preference for? About the only thing the child is going to retain of this entire encounter is that granny tossed out such a beloved toy or decoration. Her family will no doubt sit around twiddling their thumbs years down the road baffled as to why the child is no longer close to God.

A pastor opposed to the celebration of Christmas remarked that no one that has considered the material he has made available regarding the subject and prayed seriously about the topic has told him that despite these that they will continue celebrating the holiday. The statement was made to promulgate the impression that there is little chance for the true believer to come to any conclusion other than that of this particular pastor.

However, there are at least two other alternatives.

Firstly, the individual believer could have been convicted by the Holy Spirit that there is something more profoundly wrong in that particular congregation than the celebrating of Christmas. Concluding such, they retreat hastily from that particular assembly and flee to another house of worship.

Secondly, they might have considered what the pastor had to say, came to a different conclusion, and felt their was no need to inform the pastor of the decision. Especially in light of those matters where the individual is granted some measure of personalized conviction, it is not really the preacher's business what goes on in your home. If this brand of theology and ecclesiology makes such a fuss over Roman Catholic confession, they can't really then invoke some kind of expectation that you are obligated to blab about everything you do.

In these churches where the congregations don't celebrate Christmas, is it out of a desire to please God or have they been so brainwashed by the pastor that they are afraid of ticking him off?

A pastor can repent of celebrating Christmas as much as he likes. However, it is really not his place to homiletically manipulate and coerce you into doing so.

By Frederick Meekins

Christianity & The New Liberalism

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Now, on his commercial where he says that he and Gloria Copeland are married forever, does Kenneth Copeland speak rhetorically about this life or has he adopted the Mormon teaching on marriage. Might as well. Sounds like his old pal Pope Francis is adopting a more Mormon understanding of Creation.

(Audio) Has The Pope Abandoned Christianity In Favor Of A Platonic Mormonism?