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.

Friday, August 11

Headline Potpourri #98

It was lamented in a SermonAudio podcast that the average worker does not stay at a job for more than five years. But so long as the worker puts in a reasonable day's labor and usually has the future job lined up before the current position is left, is this really an issue for pastor's to hand down authoritative pronouncements regarding? If most employers no longer have your back for an entire career since, as the Fox News pundits enthusiastically beam, such is the nature of 21st century capitalism, shouldn't the employees take advantage of this as well if jumping ship is to their contractual advantage?

A pastor remarked that Christians ought not to be seen engaged publicly in interactions that might be categorized as bickering or disagreements. If so, whose interpretation is going to be allowed to prevail in regards to issues or incidents where Christians can come to differing conclusions? If the reasoning for this position is that such makes the church look bad in front of the unbelievers, does this mean that since it is doubtful that the garden variety reprobate knows the difference between the two, that Baptists should not openly disagree with Vatican pronouncements? If one preacher says that women can indeed wear pants or that Christians can take anti-depressants if struggling with the physical aspects of depression, does that mean a pastor that disagrees should otherwise remain silent?

So if the Southern Baptist Convention is going to condemn the “Alt Right Movement” but say nothing critical of minority supremacist groups such as Black Lives Matter and La Raza, perhaps predominately White congregations should withdraw from this organization established nowhere in the pages of the Bible if they want to be “sola scriputra” and see how long it lasts without these funds or personnel.

So after rightfully hounding Obama hard for eight years, is the official Fox News position now that the slightest criticism of a presidential administration will result in wide scale violence or even the collapse of the Republic?

It was remarked in a SermonAudio podcast that Jesus would not have been a conservative nor a liberal because He did not get involved with politics. Likely true, but that really doesn't have prohibitive bearing for those instinctively draw to that area of life primarily because the aforementioned social spheres were not the direct intent of His purpose. Without this kind of clarification, one could argue that the Christian Scientists are in a sense correct to avoid involvement with the medical establishment because Jesus did not come primarily to attend to minor physical pains and ailments.

An episode of Ancient Aliens hypothesized that Judeo-Christian religious institutions were the ones responsible for casting Lucifer or Satan in a negative light. Instead, the program suggested, we ought to consider other myths from around the world where a fallen cosmic being bearing light, from a sense of beneficence, bestowed rudimentary technology and enlightenment upon the earliest human beings and cultures. But if the Judeo-Christian belief system is to stand accused of promulgating propaganda against Satan, why shouldn't we assume that Satan would not take steps through his Luciferian devotees to formulate a narrative interpreting events in a manner where he would appear to be the hero? He is, after all, referred to as “the father of lies”.

In the Hoover Institution interview of Senator Ben Sasse, one gets the impression from these snob academics that probably sip dainty cups of tea with their pinkies outstretched that we are expected to willingly die grizzly deaths or endure permanent mutilation for the purposes of fulfilling the social vision of those that have likely never gotten a single grain of dirt under their manicured nails.

In a SermonAudio podcast, a pastoral staff lamented the tendency of the contemporary newsroom to denounce the contemporary system while profiting from it. And how is that much different from the typical congregation or pulpit?

The Southern Baptist Convention condemned the dangers posed by the “Alt Right Movement”. Did this ecclesiastical association ever come out as forcefully about Black Lives Matter associates looting electronics stores or ghetto brats playing the knockout game? Usually when those kinds of outrages take place, about the closest thing to a response from the Southern Baptist in crowd is Russell Moore rending himself homiletically in sack cloth and ashes over how ashamed he is to be a White Southerner.

Fascinating. On these nature documentary programs the narrators and the interviewed drone on and on about humans living in the “animals' environment”. Then these productions turn around and lament or even condemn the reality that our species has dared to carve out designated environs in which people are expected to dwell. Maybe those making these kinds of complaints out to offer themselves up for elimination by the elements or applaud when such a fate befalls their own offspring.

Interesting. When Prince Phillip befalls a serious infection he seeks hospitalization and we are all expected to come to a screeching halt to express concern in hopes that he will pull through. But didn't he at one point express a desire to be reincarnated as a biological plague for the purposes of killing off vast swaths of humanity? So why does he seek medical attention while the rest of us are expected to willingly die in the name of environmental preservation?

Leftist media is condemning Donald Trump for admitting that he would not want poor people in administrative positions overseeing the economy. So which of the journalistic elite directly entered their prestigious correspondent position from that of being a Walmart greeter or gas station attendant? How is what Trump said any worse than someone admitting that they wouldn't want an Amish carpenter as Secretary of Defense?

I dreamed I had to guide my mom away from a pack of hyenas circling the perimeter of the extended care facility where she stayed temporarily.

In a podcast, Russell Moore pondered why church attendance is declining. At least in regards to the Southern Baptist congregations that would do things the way Russell Moore would approve of, maybe a significant number are tired of getting bashed over the head for little more than happening to be White and conservative individualists in terms of their political ideology.

During the “News In Focus with Adam MacManus” segment of the 6/22/17 edition of Generation's Radio, it was said that the best protection against terrorism is to share the Gospel with refugees from Islamic nations. However, this assertion is in contradiction of the Calvinist soteriology held by the broadcast's benefactor Orthodox Presbyterian Minister Kevin Swanson. For if God preordained that hardly any refugees were to come to Christ, that would in no way one way or the other neither increase nor decrease the chance of preventing a terrorist attack. If one intends to maintain belief in presdestination, one is forced to admit that all this appeal was intended to accomplish would be to frighten listeners into compliance in terms of monetary contribution.

On an episode of Generation's Radio, Kevin Swanson and his cohost mocked the listeners of Alex Jones as wearers of tinfoil hats that think the world is controlled by aliens from outer space and lizard people. Some of Jones' theories could be construed off the deep end. However, they really aren't that much more out of line than some of the notions peddled by Swanson such as that an intense interest in Little House On The Prairie could lead to lesbianism and that those not married by 25 years of age are the moral equivalent of the town's deadbeat lush.

In his condemnation of Alex Jones, homeschool activist Kevin Swanson flat out admitted that he would not want Alex Jones to be a member of his church. Swanson went on to argue such a position because he believed that Jones would be disruptive when the provocateur did not get his way regarding so-called “secondary issues”. But why is Swanson's viewpoint presumptively assumed to be the one that ought to prevail in this theoretical ecclesiastical scenario? Applying Swanson's own worldview presupposition, should a church refuse membership to an outspoken individual that holds to Swansonite positions that the only legitimate form of education is home education or that young adult women having reached the age of majority should still be denied by their parents the opportunity to pursue formal higher education and career opportunities outside of the family home?

Feminists are outraged that Donald Trump complemented an Irish reporter on the beauty of her smile. Given that she was probably from the British Isles, maybe the President was just surprised that she had any teeth at all. It must also be asked were these critics as condemnatory of Bill Clinton when he intimately probed Monica Lewinsky's oral hygiene?

On the podcast of Veggie Tales creator Phil Vischer, Christian skepticism of climate change was condemned as “premillennial eschatalogical residue”. Wonder how long until such highfalutin terminology will be invoked to justify the curtailment of the liberties and the ultimate persecution of those holding to particular theological interpretations disputing the prevailing consensus imposed by prevailing technocrats.

It was explicitly stated on Ancient Aliens that dragons never existed. Seriously? The whole series is predicated on the assumption that what humanity understands as mythology and religion is merely the attempt of our forbearers to understand extraterrestrials. But somehow it the belief in dragons that apparently goes a step too far.

Many of the victuals available for purchase at Whole Foods are as ugly as the hippies shopping there. If that is what food is supposed to look like, I think I have lost my appetite. Ironic how the same beatniks complaining the loudest about food being overly packaged at other retailers are noticeably silent about the items for sale at this supermarket being just as tightly wound in cellophane and related hydrocarbon byproduct. Cereal for $5 a box is a bit much when I am used to getting it for 99 cents at Pennsylvania food outlets such as Sharp Shopper and Go Grocery Outlet.

In an episode of his podcast. Phil Vischer lamented the pervasiveness of consumerism. As such, does he intend to renounce and return the fortune he accumulated from the creation of Veggie Tales, probably the epitome of Christian consumerism and disposable income?

It was conjectured on the Phil Vischer podcast that the election of Donald Trump was a statement that we only care about ourselves. As an alternative, at the time of the final decision, were we supposed to elect Hillary Clinton with that statement of caring about others implemented in the form of higher rates of confiscatory taxation and projections of acquiescence or capitulation abroad? A nation doesn't have to be overly aggressive, but ultimately the government of such exists to protect the interests of those foremostly within the borders of such jurisdictions holding sanctioned status. Do you ever hear China or Russia go out of their way almost in the anguish of a mental health crisis in need of therapeutic intervention over how pathetic they feel for standing for their respective interests?

A pastor preached that God cannot forgive a sin that is not explicitly confessed. So what happens if someone dies before the nightly review of daily shortcomings or if someone forgets a particular sin such as eating one potato chip too many if this is apparently the path certain Baptists want to start walking down?

If missionaries to Africa can wear culturally significant apparel in honor of the people group they are attempting to reach, does that mean missionaries to ComiCon or MUFON can wear Starfleet uniforms in the pulpit? Can missionaries to Appalachia wear camo pants and a flannel shirt or are hillbillies too White to be granted this exception?

In a sermon, a missionary insinuated that it is not enough to use the gifts God has given us on behalf of the Body of Christ. We must also ask if He wants us to use these gifts on behalf of a part of the Body of Christ apparently on the other side of the planet. So basically one ought to set aside the elderly in one's family as this missionary and his wife have essentially done.

In a church choir's Fourth of July celebration, the verbal narration claimed that those crafting and implementing the Declaration of Independence did not draw swords but rather their pens. But wouldn't their effort have been futile if not for those Americans that did?

A Yahoo headline laments that Trump planned to have supporters bused in to his Poland oration. How is that appreciably different than the tactics utilized by Black Lives Matter or related Sorosian agitprop groups? At least Trumpites aren't likely to loot local businesses for electronics and haircare products.

Hobby Lobby has been convicted of smuggling over 5000 artifacts from Iraq. As part of the judgment, Hobby Lobby is obligated to return the disputed antiquities. However, will these items be respected as they ought as historical treasures? Or will they ultimately be destroyed at the hands of Islamic extremists?

Am beginning to wonder for the best way for Trump to have exerted influence over policy would have been to remain a commentator. With Fox News seemingly unraveling from the inside, the time would have been ripe for the news network the mogul had hinted at establishing.

Mark Zuckerberg remarked that Facebook has the potential to fill the role once played by the physical church in people's lives. However, the concern is not so much that people will gravitate towards these more ephemeral fellowships. Rather the greater concern ought to be the extent to which Facebook will be the determinant in what will be allowed in terms of doctrine and belief given the social network's track record of intervention that some might categorize as censorship.

By Frederick Meekins