Please use discernment on all these Heaven books and movies!

It is so sad that people flock to books and movies like “Heaven is for Real.” Please let your friends know how these “I went to Heaven and came back” books are all false. The are un-biblical, anti-biblical and they don’t even agree with each other. If you want to know about Heaven then read the Bible and this: In Light of Eternity by Randy Alcorn. It is a terrific, simple read and thoroughly biblical.

Or least get this FREE booklet by the same author, Heaven: Biblical Answers to Common Questions.  It should be must-reading for anyone reading those other books or seeing the movies.

Please watch and share this:

Please read these timeless and simple investing tips

Yes, that is the most boring title ever, but please read anyway.  This is important.

The Sheep and the Wolves: Smart Investing Made Simple had some great advice for all investors.  There are always risks — especially in the economy we’re suffering through now where a major crash is possible — but this advice should work well regardless.  The risk of completely sitting out of the market is that inflation drives stocks up for a time and you miss out on those gains.

The odds of you timing the market perfectly or even well are extremely low.  Most experts can’t even do it.

Even picking individual stocks is a challenge for amateurs and pros alike.  When I used to work for Compaq / HP I sometimes had access to earning per share results and projections, the holy grail of investment information (no, I never abused it — I always invested steadily and could only trade in narrow windows each quarter).  But even with that knowledge I couldn’t guess where the stock would go, because we would sometimes see the stock dip even after record earnings.  Why?  Because of some comment about future earnings or even a misstatement by our CEO or CFO.  The lesson?  Don’t try and be an expert about market timing.  Even with the ultimate inside information I still wouldn’t have been sure to win.

I also saw how a company could drive up a stock price by mortgaging the future.  They would rush out a new product to hit quarterly earnings then suffer for years because of quality issues and customer dissatisfaction.  Or if times were tough they would consume financial reserves that had been built up in conservative years.  That gave the illusion that things were still going well, but eventually the reserves ran out.  In theory the Big 4 auditors would have done something about that, but their value is highly overrated (I say that as a CPA who used to be in a Big 8 firm, back before they started merging).

I was glad to see that two of the Vanguard Funds I’ve used for years were listed (VGSTX and VTSMX).  Vanguard is easy to use and their low cost model is crucial, especially in down years.  If your broker is churning your investments and charging you upwards of 2% over the course of a year, then in a year of 5% returns he has taken 40% of your gains, leaving you with nothing after inflation.  Buying a mix of mutual funds and holding them is the key.

The other key, of course, is to start early.  There are lots of ways to convey the benefits of compound interest, but no matter how much you make I urge you to start young.  If you save 10% per year for your career you will be fine in retirement.

Here’s a sample of the link.  I encourage you to read it all.

Stock-market investors are like these sheep farmers. Collectively, they enjoy investment returns of roughly 10 percent per year. Individually, however, things are different. Most investors suffer severe losses from the wolves of Wall Street. Wolves, by the way, who don sheep’s clothing to convince investors to trust them. (These investors also have a tendency to make things worse by selling their flocks when sheep prices fall and expanding them when prices rise.) If you want to be a successful farmer, you have to understand how farming works, and how to protect yourself from the wolves. Fortunately, it’s not as tough as it seems.

The financial industry wants you to believe that investing is difficult. If you buy into their message, if you accept the premise that you need help to invest wisely, they can charge you big bucks to handle your money. The truth is somewhat different. Investing is simple. In fact, it can be one of the easiest things you do while managing your finances. How simple? Let’s boil it down to just a few sentences.

Here’s how to invest wisely:

Set aside as much as you can in investment accounts. Prefer tax-advantaged accounts (like a 401(k) or Roth IRA) before taxable accounts.

Invest all of your money in a low-cost stock index fund, such as Vanguard’s VTSMX or Fidelity’s FSTMX.P

If the stock market makes you nervous, allocate some portion of your money to a bond fund. Or invest instead in a low-cost combo fund like Vanguard’s VGSTX or Fidelity’s FFNOX.

Continue investing as much money as possible. Never touch it. (Nothing makes a bigger difference to the size of your flock investments than how much you contribute.)

Ignore the news and ignore your fund.

That’s it. Seriously. That’s all you have to do to earn returns better than 90 percent of other investors.

There are scores of books and published research papers that support this strategy. It’s also the strategy that Warren Buffett (and other top pros) recommend for 99 percent of investors. If you’d like, you can spend days or weeks or months reading about why this works. Or you can trust these folks and do it.

Heterosexual supporters of “same-sex marriage” are going to get mugged by reality

Here’s why: Their support for these “marriages” will also justify support for polygamy, polyamory, bi-sexual multiple marriages and more — and their spouses will have the option to participate in those without their consent.  The woman who supports “same-sex marriage” today may regret it when her husband brings home another woman — or another man — to legally share her home and finances.

Please read this post carefully so you’ll be able to show people how the pro-gay movement can have deep and personal impacts on them.  This is not a “slippery slope” fallacy, it is a logical slippery slope (or, as I like to call it, a cliff argument), where the arguments for one position automatically support another position as well.  And don’t say, “That can’t happen!,” because it is already getting mainstreamed.  

The consequences are huge and have already manifested themselves in many places.  Their agenda has and will continue to cost people their personal liberties, religious freedom and parental rights — and those are design features, not bugs.

There is a simple reason that the gay lobby focuses mostly on the “LG” (lesbian and gay) part of the LGBTQX alphabet soup: The reasoning of the rest of the acronym is harder to sell because of the logical consequences.  But if they can get the first part affirmed and codified then it will be too late to backtrack to prevent the rest from taking place.  Case in point: Have you noticed how they never talk about bisexuals and their “civil rights” to be able to marry at least one person of each sex?  After all, all the same arguments for gays and lesbians should apply to them.

We have such obvious and sound arguments on our side.  By nature and design, one man / one woman relationships produce the next generation and only those unions can provide a mother and a father to a child.  Therefore, the government has an interest in those unions, because they form the foundation of society.  We don’t even have to use religious arguments, though of course God’s ideal is one man / one woman marriages and homosexual behavior is a sin.  The Bible could not be more clear.

But our arguments have often been ineffective.  Why?  Because the foundational lie of the gay lobby works so well.  They combine a lie (“Agree with us and it will cost you nothing while helping others”) with the truth (“We will relentlessly harm you if you disagree”) and that is too much for many people to withstand.  They have made it very easy for people to switch sides and repeat false sound bites (they were born that way, Jesus never said anything about it, it prevents bullying, it doesn’t hurt you, they love each other, we shouldn’t ban same-sex marriage, etc.).  People are really good at rationalizing lies to seek pleasure and avoid pain.

So I encourage you to try this reasoning: Ask the other person if they’d mind if their spouse (current or future) decided to maintain their relationship and marry someone else of the opposite sex — or the same sex.  Would that bother them?  If so, why aren’t they living consistently — even just hypothetically! — with their own worldview?  If they claim it wouldn’t bother them, ask if you can use your home polygraph test on them.  The other person may lie to you and pretend that they wouldn’t care, but you will have given them something to think about.  Later in the post I’ll show what that conversation could look like.

The argument takes the pro-gay reasoning to its logical conclusions and shows how most people will not like the possibilities.  That should help them re-think their entire argument.

It starts by demonstrating the truth that marriage is something we describe, not define.  As Greg Koukl at Stand to Reason has noted, marriage has always described something that existed: A union of a man and a woman.  But if people think marriage is something we get to define, then anything goes.  Sure, they pretend that they just want to define it as any two adults who love each other, etc.  But why pull up the drawbridge there?  If you choose to define it rather than describe it, then why can’t others define it their way?

Then it points out the logical conclusions: If marriage isn’t just a union of a man and a woman, then why can’t it involve three people?  Why can’t it be polygamous?  Why can’t a man have a wife and a husband in two separate but simultaneous marriages?  Why can’t you marry your dog?  As Koukl notes, when the other person says those are silly examples, you get to agree with them!  Yes, they are silly — but they are your arguments, not mine.  If your position is that we can define marriage how we like, these possibilities are open for others who are more “open minded” than you are.

Here’s how that conversation might look.  Remember to be nice!  This doesn’t have to be combative.  You aren’t trying to grind them into a fine powder, you want them to see where their worldview is taking them.  Oh, and you want to work the Gospel in wherever you can.

Christian: So what do you think of this “same-sex marriage” and adoptions by gay people?

Pro-gay person: I’m all for it.  Hey, they love each other and that’s what it is all about.  You have a civil right to marry who you like.  It doesn’t hurt me or my marriage.  And the Bible never said it is wrong.

And gay people adopting is fine. Kids need love from anyone.  It doesn’t have to be a male and a female.

C: Actually, the Bible couldn’t be more clear, and even two out of the three types of pro-gay people agree that it considers homosexual behavior sinful.  We can come back to that if you like.

So do you think marriage is something you define or describe?  I mean, is marriage a thing that exists and then we describe it, or is it just a word that we can change the definition of?

P: I think we can redefine it.  It used to be that interracial marriage was forbidden.

C: But the definition was the same: A union of a man and a woman.  So if you can redefine it, I assume you are OK with polygamy, polyamory (group marriage), polyandry (multiple husbands), one or more spouse of each sex, marriages to animals, etc.?

P: Oh, don’t be silly.

C: I agree that those are silly, but they are your arguments, not mine.  If marriage is something you define, then who are you to say others can’t define it their way?  All the same things apply: It is the same love, they were born that way, Jesus never said anything about them, etc.

P: But those things won’t happen.

C: They can and they will.  The polygamy and pedophilia movements are already latching onto the gay agenda gains and using the same reasoning. ABC just ran a fluff piece on polygamy and The Atlantic is advocating for polyamory.  This is how they change the culture to accept what used to be unthinkable.  Who would have predicted 10-15 years ago where we’d be now with “same-sex marriage?”  Who would have thought that Christian bakers could lose their businesses for not baking cakes for same-sex “weddings?”

So why are you pulling up the drawbridge on these other people who want to live out the way they were born?  How do their loving relationships hurt you?  If a bisexual was born that way, how can you deny him the fulfillment of marrying a man and a woman?

And who says that you can only love one person?  Why can’t a man or a woman have two or more spouses of any gender?

Real feminists should hate where this is headed.  Women will devote their youth to raising kids, only to have their husband be able to bring another partner into the household.

P: Well, I guess . . .

C: You are married with kids, right?

P: Yes, I’ve been married to my husband for 12 years and we have 2 kids.

C: OK, so consider this: Your husband comes home and tells you he loves you and wants to stay married to you, but he has always been attracted to men as well.  And there is a man he really loves.  So for him to be complete he is also going to marry him.  His “husband” will live in your house with you and your kids and they will have sex together.    

P: That’s ridiculous.

C: But it could happen, right?  Lots of men have abandoned families for gay lovers and women have left for lesbian relationships.  Episcopalian “Bishop” Gene Robinson is a Leftist hero for leaving his wife and kids for his gay lover.  Why shouldn’t these guys stay married and just add on?

Again, I’m using your born that way / same love / etc. logic.

So what would you do in that situation?

P: But our vows were to “forsake all others.”

C: Uh, sorry, but are you not familiar with no-fault divorce?  Wedding vows used to be like a real contract where you couldn’t unilaterally abandon your obligation.  But with no-fault divorce either party can leave for any reason.  So with the political clout LGBTQ people have things like this are inevitable.

P: Well, my husband would never do that.

C: Probably not, but if he had wanted to he probably wouldn’t have told you until society and your Left-leaning church decided that “same-sex marriage” was a civil right.

Again, what would you do?  It is just a hypothetical based on taking your views to their logical conclusions, so please don’t be offended.

P: Well, I’d divorce him.  Or I’d marry another husband!

C: And what makes you think another guy would want to be involved in that?!  “Yeah, my husband married a guy that shares our bed now, so I want a second husband.”

Wouldn’t you want your husband to be happy and fulfilled and to be who he really is?

P: Not at my expense!

C: Indeed.  So if you divorced him, do you realize that some Leftist judge would probably give him parental rights? 

P: No way!

C: Way.  Think about it: You and society have decided that it is illegal for adoption agencies to “discriminate” against gay couples.  So they are “obviously” just as fit to parent your kids as a heterosexual couple.  And there would be two of them — your husband and his lover — versus just one of you.  And given how politically incorrect it would be to give custody to you, the judge would almost certainly side with them.  

So the logical conclusion of your worldview would be you — or someone else — either living with your spouse and his new spouse (man or woman) and you would have no legal control over it.

P: I still don’t think that would happen.

C: It will, because the logic is already in place once you grant civil rights to sexual preferences — whether allegedly inborn or not.  

Let’s try another example: Regular polygamy.  I picked the “bisexual polygamy” first because, oddly enough, they are ahead of the regular polygamists in getting civil rights for their sexual preferences.  But how can you argue against polygamy at all?  At least those relationships fit the original definition of marriage — that is, one man and one woman.  By nature and design they could produce children and provide a mother and a father to them.  They “just” involved more than one of those relationships.  

P: But polygamy is wrong! [Note: The Leftists may not even think it is wrong, but I assumed so in this case to make it harder to convince them.]

C: We agree, but you’ve already made the case for them: They love each other (“same love!”), they were born that way, etc.  They can even claim that there are more parents around to love the kids.  So your support of government recognition of same-sex unions unwittingly made the case for polygamy.

So here’s another hypothetical: What if your husband decides he’d like a younger wife but doesn’t want the costly divorce?  He’ll be able to marry someone whether you like it or not and bring her into your house.  She would share in all you have built up over the years and actually live with you.  Think of the guys who dump their spouses for “trophy wives.”  Polygamy may be much simpler and cheaper for them.

P: My husband would never do that!

C: But if society tells him it is OK, he might change his mind.  Remember how much people are influenced by the “if it is legal then it must be moral” line of thinking.  Even Planned Parenthood said this about abortion in a 1964 advertisement: “An abortion kills the life of a baby after it has begun.”  Just years later half the population thought that abortion was an inalienable right and a completely moral solution.  So give it a decade or two and it may seem natural for your husband to consider a younger model.

And even though the Bible clearly teaches that God’s ideal is one man / one woman marriages for life, it is a thousand times easier to twist the Bible to support polygamy than it is to support “same-sex marriage.”

And even if your husband wouldn’t do that, what about all the other women and children impacted by it?

Now don’t feel like you have to answer me now, or at all, but I encourage you to think carefully about these things and see if perhaps you should reconsider your views.  If you think I’ve stated something incorrectly or illogically, please let me know.  But I firmly believe that those are all logical consequences of assigning civil rights to sexual preferences. Even if gays were born that way, there are no good reasons for the government to get involved in their relationships and there are many bad things that will inevitably happen — if not to you, then to others.

And please remember what the word of God says about this:

  • 100% of the verses addressing homosexual behavior describe it as sin in the clearest and strongest possible terms.
  • 100% of the verses referring to God’s ideal for marriage involve one man and one woman.
  • 100% of the verses referencing parenting involve moms and dads with unique roles (or at least a set of male and female parents guiding the children).
  • 0% of 31,173 Bible verses refer to homosexual behavior in a positive or even benign way or even hint at the acceptability of homosexual unions of any kind.

God created this world and knows exactly how it works.  Living in denial of that reality is always a recipe for pain.  The Good News is that all sins can be forgiven through repenting and trusting in Jesus.

—–

Conclusion: I encourage you to try this reasoning with people who hold pro-LGBTQ views.  I think it is a provocative way to get them to quit spouting fallacious sound bites and to think more carefully about the logical conclusions of their views.  Yes, it is an emotional argument, but one grounded in facts and logic.  The Left falsely uses emotional arguments, but there is nothing wrong with use using them properly.

——

By the way, if you a conservative using this on a Left-leaning spouse, be sure to tell them these are hypothetical situations!  You don’t want them to freak out too badly.

Roundup

Woman who slept with 18 guys shocked that no one wants to marry her — This week’s episode of Mugged by Reality.  It is a sad tale of someone who willingly bought the lies of Planned Parenthood, the entertainment industry, public schools and the rest of the Left.  Will they be there to console her and be her companion for the rest of her life?  Of course not.  Satan doesn’t mind being inconsistent.  He’ll be glad to mock you for having believed his lies.

24 Invaluable Skills To Learn For Free Online This Year – The Excel link alone is worth reading.  There are more on music, singing, languages and even tying your shoes (?!).

Why I Cannot Blame Russia and India for Taking on the Gays – 

Russia remains stalwart in its laws that aim to curb the influence of the West’s gay-friendly culture on Russian youth.  Meanwhile, last week, in a stunning turn of events, India’s high court reinstituted a nineteenth-century law against sodomy.  On cue, the ligbitist kibitzers are going crazy in such homophile haunts as the New Yorker and the Guardian, expressing total outrage that there should exist, anywhere on the globe, nations that do not think it’s normal or appropriate to subsidize and celebrate men sodomizing boys. . . .

Gay male culture in the United States, Canada, Latin America, and much of Europe is sick.  It is literally plagued with disease — not only HIV (which is rising again), but also syphilis (which has made a comeback).  And Michelangelo Signorile, the dowager prince of gay news at the Huffington Post, admitted at long last what gay watchdog groups had been denying for decades upon decades: the chronic, timeless state of the homosexual man is to chase after pubescent boys.

Incognito Gone – The Incognito tab on Google Chrome is obviously a way for people to try and hide porn usage.  And guess what?  Google does not give you an option to disable it!  It is almost as if they are encouraging porn use.  The “don’t be evil” people can be very creative in redefining evil to make themselves look better.  The good news is that someone created a tool called Incognito Gone to remove it from Chrome and the equivalent private browsing option on Internet Explorer.  If you let your family surf unprotected, you are doing them a great disservice.

Trouble at the lab – Scientists like to think of science as self-correcting. To an alarming degree, it is not – It is fascinating how people think that science isn’t tainted by original sin.

Seven Minimum Wage Facts That Have Democrats Worried – If you are talking to someone who advocates to increase the minimum wage, you can be sure that they are uninformed about basic economic concepts and/or are just using it as class warfare or a distraction from Leftist failures.

1. Just 2.8% of American workers earn at or below the minimum wage.

2. Half of all minimum wage workers are 16 to 24 years old.

3.  Labor workers already make well above the minimum wage.

4. Even those who support minimum wage hikes concede it could kill jobs.

5. Minorities and the poor are hit hardest by the minimum wage.  Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman famously noted that “the most anti-black law on the books of this land is the minimum wage law.” …

6. Even progressives concede the minimum wage is no panacea for America’s economic woes.

7. 21 states already have minimum wages that are higher than the federal $7.25/hr rate.

Lesbian partner violence fact sheet – They cover this in “comprehensive” sex ed classes in public schools, right?

Shocking Video – CNN Anchor Reveals Obama Administration Officials Threaten Journalists Who Make Obama Look Bad – The title says it all.  How can you be surprised?  This is by far the most lawless administration ever.  Second place — including Nixon’s — isn’t even close.

Significant Insights with guest Robert Oscar Lopez – This is a fascinating interview with a gay raised by two lesbians.  He is straight now but initially assumed he was gay because of how he was conditioned.  And he highlights the tragic but common cases where older men preyed on him by exchanging a faux father image for sex with him.

He also thought he must be gay and/or took the easy way out because he was uncomfortable around women and didn’t know how to approach them.  I know of people who obviously wanted girlfriends but ended up “gay” because they struck out too much.

When “pro-lifers” make pro-abortion arguments

Rachel Held Evans is a “progressive Christian” who argues for the anti-religious freedom aspects of Obamacare via Privilege and The Pill.  Along the way she makes several arguments on behalf of the pro-abortion lobby, such as this comment about when life begins:

Rabbit trail: The fact that a woman’s body naturally rejects hundreds of fertilized eggs in her lifetime raises some questions in my mind about where we draw the line regarding the personhood of a zygote. Do we count all those “natural abortions” as deaths? Did those zygotes have souls? Will I meet them in heaven? Honestly, the more I learn about the reproductive system, the harder it becomes for me to adamantly insist that I know for sure the exact moment when life begins. And it’s even harder for me to insist that everyone else agree.

But with arguments like that, “pro-lifers” like Held hand ammunition to the pro-abortion forces.  That’s a great argument, unless your opponent has the ability to see the difference between A and B:

A. Human being dies of natural causes (inside or outside the womb)

B. Human being has skull crushed and limbs ripped off by a 3rd party (inside or outside the womb)

In other words, deliberate abortions are vastly different than fertilized eggs dying of natural causes, just as murders are vastly different from grandma dying peacefully in her bed.

Held and Co. also ignore the scientific fact that the unborn are unique, living human beings from fertilization.  They have no excuse for missing that.

And even if we didn’t know when human life begins, shouldn’t we err on the side of life?  If you thought that what you are about to do might destroy an innocent human life, shouldn’t you stop what you are doing? The “we don’t know when life beings” fallacy naturally leads to abortion on demand at any stage of pregnancy.

She was also wrong about abortions and “morning after” pills:

Andrew Walker and I have published a response over at the First Things website, and we argue that her essay is mistaken on a number of levels. For instance, Evans denies that “morning-after” pills have an abortifacient mechanism. Yet somehow she misses that the FDA label on Plan B’s package says otherwise. But you don’t have to believe me. You can read the label for yourself. Notice the second sentence in bold underneath “Other information” . . .

The pro-life movement does not need any help from faux-lifers like Held who make the arguments of pro-abortionists for them.

Valley of Vision: A collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions

One of the tragedies of how the U.S. teaches history is how the Puritans get distilled down to a silly and false stereotype of being prudish buzzkills.  The truth is that they were very knowledgeable, passionate people.  Valley of Vision: A collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions is a terrific book that has many of their profound prayers and devotions.

It is amazing how this book of prayers that are hundreds of years old that was published almost 40 years ago seems to be everywhere.  I heard about this on Stand To Reason and got it for Christmas.  Then a pastor and an elder at church read from it on separate occasions.  And then Glenn quoted it on Facebook.

I encourage people to get it.  Here’s a sample.  Thanks to Glenn for typing it into Facebook!

O LORD GOD,

Thou hast commanded me to believe in Jesus; and I would flee to no other refuge,
wash in no other fountain, build on no other foundation, receive from no other fullness, rest in no other relief.

His water and blood were not severed in their flow at the cross, may they never be separated in my creed and experiences;

May I be equally convinced of the guilt and pollution of sin, feel my need of a prince and saviour, implore of him repentance as well as forgiveness, love holiness, and be pure in heart, have the mind of Jesus, and tread in his steps.

Let me not be at my own disposal, but rejoice that I am under the care of one who is too wise to err, too kind to injure, too tender to crush.

May I scandalize none by my temper and conduct, but recommend and endear Christ to all around, bestow good on every one as circumstances permit, and decline no opportunity of usefulness.

Grant that I may value my substance, not as the medium of pride and luxury, but as the means of my support and stewardship.

Help me to guide my affections with discretion, to owe no many anything, to be able to give to him that needeth, to feel it is my duty and pleasure to be merciful and forgiving, to show to the world the likeness of Jesus.

Responses to common atheist objections

I thought I’d share this thread from a recent commenter on the How many translations did your Bible go through? post.

Thanks for returning to comment. You seem unwilling to carefully study the arguments for and against your position, and you continually offer logical fallacies as arguments. The primary way you do this is by misstating your opponent’s views and then attacking that position. But that doesn’t prove anything.

You just said that the evil committed in the name of Christianity, was violating its basic tenets. Well, the same goes for atheism. Pol Pot, Hitler, and Stalin were just insane people, simple as that. They have nothing to do with atheism.

What grounding do you have to claim they were insane or that they did anything wrong? In a Darwinian worldview they were obviously the most fit for a time.

Also, there are a lot of atheists who haven’t killed anyone.

That’s not much of an accomplishment, but I’m glad to hear that.

The people you mention are violating atheists basic tenets as well. I’m an atheist, and I haven’t killed anyone. Sam Harris and Richard Dawkins are atheists, and they haven’t killed anyone. There are a lot of atheists in the world, and we’re just as moral as you are.

But atheism has no core tenets other than insisting that there is no God. We agree that murder is wrong, but your worldview can’t explain why.

This is a quote by Richard Dawkins.

“Do you really mean to tell me the only reason you try to be good is to gain God’s approval and reward, or to avoid his disapproval and punishment? That’s not morality, that’s just sucking up, apple-polishing, looking over your shoulder at the great surveillance camera in the sky, or the still small wiretap inside your head, monitoring your every move, even your every base though (Richard Dawkins)”.

Dawkins commits fallacies similar to yours. First, the reward for being good is legitimate because it is innately tied to the act. There is a reason that students who study hard are rewarded with better grades, why employees who perform well are rewarded with promotions and raises, etc. There is nothing wrong with avoiding sin so as to avoid punishment. What could be more logical than that?

Dawkins’ argument, even if true, wouldn’t disprove God.

Christians love making the argument that you can’t be moral without God. Dawkins states that if you can only be moral because God’s watching you, that’s pretty sad.

Atheists love making the false argument that Christians love making the argument that you can’t be moral without God. There have been nearly 3,000 posts on this blog plus tens of thousands of comments. Please find where Christians have made that claim. You’ll be looking a long time. What you will find is that we say that without God you can’t logically ground morality. It isn’t that you can’t be moral if Darwinian evolution is true, it is that there would be no such thing.

Jesus did not rise from the dead. Your “evidence” aka, Bible is false and is full of contradictions.

We have much more evidence than the Bible, though of course that is part of the evidence. You have already demonstrated that you’ve never studied the Bible seriously. You are just repeating atheist sound bites. There are answers to all your alleged contradiction claims (though I doubt you could name 3 supposed contradictions without having to search for them).

Most scholars believe that the gospels are written between 70-100 A.D. That’s plenty of time to get facts wrong.

There are many good reasons to believe that the Gospels — at least the first three — were written before that. Please see http://4simpsons.wordpress.com/2008/06/25/when-was-the-new-testament-written/ — that is, if you are truly interested in facts and logic.

And it is fallacious to say that just because things could be wrong that they must be wrong.

Also, how come there isn’t one contemporary eyewitness for Jesus Christ? Everyone claims that there are several eyewitness, yet all of the writings are after Jesus died. Isn’t that a little odd?

I don’t follow . . . if nearly 1/3 of the Gospel texts address the last week of his life and if the entire religion is based on him dying for our sins and rising again, and if the Bible records that his earthly ministry was the last three years of his life, and if the Bible records that his followers didn’t realize He’d die and rise from the dead, then exactly why would you expect the writings to occur before He died and rose again?

Atheism does have really good arguments, but you’re too blinded by your faith to see it.

I could say the same about you regarding Christianity, only I’d have the truth of the Bible to back me up: Romans 1:18–20 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.

But you have nothing in atheism to back up your statement. If your worldview is true, then random chemical reactions are solely responsible for my conversion from atheism to my belief in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. Why be so mad at your own worldview if it is the “obvious” cause for Christianity?

It’s funny how you say that I’m the one who’s been conditioned to repeat soundbites. Christians are told from birth not to question the dogma of their religion. Even questioning their religion is considered a sin.

Once again you show that you haven’t read the book. Please note these two teachings then reconsider your statements:

Acts 17:11 (ESV) 11 Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.

1 Thessalonians 5:21 (ESV) 21 but test everything; hold fast what is good.

Christians are specifically told to use good discernment in testing truth claims.

No, I haven’t come up with excuses to avoid the Bible. I have looked at the evidence and drawn my conclusion that the Christian God is no different than any other myth. The truth is that we don’t know what created the universe. It may have been a “God”, or something else. The point is we don’t know.

We can use logic and facts to demonstrate that it came into being at a point in time, and it is obvious that whatever created it had to be more powerful and significant than what was created.

It’s pretty sad how Christians preach about love of their God. If their love doesn’t work then they preach about eternal damnation.

That is another one of your made-up claims. We preach the entire truth of God. We do love him, and for good reasons. He is a God of love, but will also punish sin as any just judge would. And we love our neighbors, so we tell them the truth about Jesus: He died on a cross for the sins of all who would repent and believe in him. If you want to pay for your own sins for eternity, that is your option.

That doesn’t sound like a loving God to me. Why aren’t you afraid of Zeus, Allah, or any other Gods that have been worshiped throughout history?

Because I have good reasons to believe that those are false.

It’s because you have been brought up from birth to believe in a certain God. If you haven’t been brought up, you’ve been indoctrinated in some form.

Then you are an atheist because of where you were born, right? You know nothing of the Bible. I’m a Christian because God made me spiritually alive and turned me to him through his Word. He does that all over the world every day. People convert from all sorts of belief systems to Christianity.

Just because you believe in Christianity, it doesn’t make it right.

I agree with you. That is another made-up argument on your part.

Christianity is based on geography, and nothing else.

No, it is based on trusting in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus and in repenting of sins. Really, read the book. Eternity is a mighty long time to regret spouting atheist sound bites in rebellion against your creator.

Good pro-life news from Kenya

Abortion is the worst export from the West.  Thankfully, many countries are resisting this evil.  I have a real heart for Kenya after five mission trips and numerous dear friends there, so I was glad to see this: Kenya Pro-Lifers Defeat Western Effort to Expand Abortion.

When Kenyans voted on a new constitution in 2010, a massive publicity campaign – heavily funded by the Obama administration – assured voters it would not legalize abortion. In fact, “Life begins at conception” is in the constitution.

But the Constitution also allowed abortion in certain circumstances. Pro-lifers warned there would be more to come.

Abortion proponents, including those from the United States and Europe, drafted a set of policies for the Kenyan Ministry of Health that would have imposed abortion on the Kenyan medical system. The policies were rejected this week, according to a source close to the effort. Pro-lifers now want Kenyan legislators to denounce the attempt to expand abortion through the Ministry of Health.

What is truly despicable is how the Left is so pro-abortion that they borrowed money from our grandchildren to try to increase abortions in Kenya.

During the referendum for Kenya’s constitution, the Obama administration spent $18 million and directed U.S. personnel, including Peace Corp volunteers, to campaign for it. President Obama would visit Kenya, it was promised, if they passed the Constitution but he never did.

That’s what you should expect from a political party that is so pro-abortion that they want to increase abortions by removing restrictions and requiring taxpayer-funded abortions.  From the Democrats’ platform:

The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right.

If you voted for Obama and other Democrats then you are part of the problem.  Please reconsider your views.  

Wendy Davis fought for late-term abortions, so you should vote for her.

And anyone who opposes her is anti-women.

At least that’s what the Left would have you believe.

It doesn’t matter that she lied under oath about her background.

It doesn’t matter that her lies were uncovered by a reporter who leans left politically, it was obviously the fault of the Right.

It doesn’t matter that she blamed her opponent, Greg Abbott, even though he had nothing to do with the story — and even if he had, it wouldn’t have changed the fact that Davis lied.

It doesn’t matter that her “feel sorry for me” campaign is built on lies.

It doesn’t matter that this self-made, reliant woman divorced her 2nd husband the day after he made the last payment for her law degree (after that he went into his retirement savings to pay for her education).

It doesn’t matter that she was such a bad mother that her biological daughter wanted her step-dad to have custody of her when Wendy divorced him.

It doesn’t matter that a court ordered her not to use alcohol or drugs before meeting with her daughters.

In documents obtained by RedState, Wendy Davis’s own child requested her father be her custodian. Likewise, in filing his divorce against Wendy Davis, her husband requested the courtenter the temporary restraining order.

The court, without an evidentiary hearing, did so. See the temporary restraining order here. The court ordered that Wendy Davis “be immediately restrained from . . . using illegal drugs or consuming alcohol within 24 hours before or during the period of possession of or access to the child.”

The court also ordered Wendy Davis to keep out of her residence anyone she was having “intimate or dating relationship[s]” with while children were present between 10pm and 6am.

The Dallas Morning News reported Davis’s husband, who paid Davis’s way through Harvard Law School by cashing in his 401(K) and taking out a loan, claimed Davis committed adultery on him.

Davis’s husband got custody of the children and the court ordered Wendy Davis to pay child support.

It doesn’t matter that even the majority of pro-choice people oppose late term abortions, making Davis a pro-abortion extremist by any standard.

It doesn’t matter that nearly all gender-selection abortions kill females for the sole reason that they are female.  That isn’t the ultimate misogyny, it is a female’s right to kill their unborn daughters for being female!

It doesn’t matter that so many women abort their children because of the pressure from the fathers of the children (such as this case where the abortive mother found healing through Christ) and that so many males support abortion rights.  This is a woman’s issue!

It doesn’t matter that most of these abortions are to kill babies with “defects,” real or imagined, because the issues can’t be diagnosed until later in pregnancy.  And it really doesn’t matter that if Greg Abbott’s disability was noted in utero instead of happening as an adult that Wendy would have fought for the right to abort him.

It doesn’t matter if you claim that your wheelchair-bound opponent hasn’t walked a day in your shoes, because the Leftist media will give you a pass.

None of that matters.  If you are a pro-abortion extremist then you can be hailed as an “incredible woman” by the Girl Scouts. You will be fawned over by the Leftist media.  People will donate to your campaign.

This is how extreme the Left is: They love abortion so much that you can get away with anything as long as you support unrestricted abortions.  This isn’t news, of course.  We knew when the feminists gave Bill Clinton a pass that all they really cared about was abortion.  They should have led the parade for an accomplished woman like Sarah Palin.  But she was pro-life so she had to be destroyed.

The Left’s love of abortion is Satanic.  It is best summarized in the platform of the Democratic party:

The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right.

It is too bad that the enduring image of Davis portrayed by the Left is of her tennis shoes and not the bodies of those killed by abortions.

The Tiny Bible of the Theological Left: Read it all in 5 minutes!

I came across this from 2011 and wanted to re-post it.  It started off as a tongue-in-cheek exercise, but I just kept thinking of more and more examples until my fingers cramped from typing so much.  Seriously, the more you think carefully about what they teach and claim to believe about the Bible the more obvious it is that they are wolves in sheep’s clothing.  

—–

There used to be a video store near us that rented movies with objectionable parts removed so the whole family could watch them.  I remember thinking, “What a time saver – you can watch Pulp Fiction in 5 minutes!”

In the same way, you can read the Theological Liberal Bible in about that time, and that is barely an exaggeration (although in this case there are no objectionable parts — at least to believers!).  Thomas Jefferson famously made his own religion with his “Jefferson Bible.” Theological Liberals just go many steps further.  I’m pretty sure this post is longer than their Bible.  Seriously, think about all the things they have to leave out:

First, they must delete the many warnings against false teachers.  There are loads of those, even in the Sermon on the Mount that they think they like but don’t really understand.

Matthew 5:17–18 has to go from the Sermon on the Mount because it shows how Jesus fully supported all the Old Testament.

Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished.

Then they need to delete various passages that warn not to add or remove anything from the word of God.

They must cut the 100+ passages passages explicitly or implicitly teaching that Jesus is the only way to salvation.  You can’t have that while you’re busy teaching that all religions lead to the one true God.

They must delete the ~3,000 verses and surrounding texts that claim to directly speak for God.  In their hypocrisy many will claim that God is still speaking to them – such as with the UCC slogan “God is still speaking;” – but they don’t believe the original claims made in the Bible.  They treat it as a purely man-made book.  Why should we believe He is speaking to them in a reliable way?  Are we to believe that God has always been a 21st century far Left politician and was just waiting until the culture drifted his way before He was brave enough to speak?

All the claims that the Bible is the word of God have to be cut.  Psalm 119?  Gone.  2 Peter 3:16?  Gone.  And so on.

The beginning of Genesis must go, because they worship Darwin more than God and they “know” how we really came into being.

The countless passages in the Old Testament commanding us not to worship other gods.  For those of you who have actually read the Bible, you know how hard it is to go more than a couple pages without that warning or without reading about the horrible consequences of disobeying it.

The whole book of Joshua, because they think it would have been genocidal for God to clear out the promised land — even if the Canaanites had sacrificed babies and committed other atrocities for 400 years.

The messages about Adam & Eve, Sodom & Gomorrah, Noah and Jonah have to go, of course – as well as Jesus’ unapologetic commentary on them and his treatment of them as real events.

The whole Exodus passage, because they can’t believe that those miracles happened or that God would judge Pharaoh and the Egyptians.  And most of the wilderness experience and the Tabernacle creation must be removed, because they don’t think God really did miracles like providing manna or gave guidance to the Israelites.

The whole book of Judges, because they think God wouldn’t really punish Israel for cycle after cycle of turning from him and worshiping false gods.

Psalm 139 is out, because it teaches how we were knit together in our mother’s wombs by God.  And the same goes for all the other passages acknowledging the humanity of the unborn, such as when John the Baptist kicks in the womb of Elizabeth when Mary, pregnant with Jesus, comes to visit.

All the do not murder / do not shed innocent blood passages have to be cut to support unrestricted abortion rights.

The book of Daniel, plus all other prophetic works, because their stunning accuracy leads theological Liberals to say they must have been written after the fact.  They seem to think that the proper Christian worldview is that Bible writers were big liars, so how could you possibly include those books?  After all, their god could never know the future like the God of the Bible.

Most or all of Paul’s letters, because they think he was a homophobic misogynist who could not have spoken for God.  There goes nearly half the books of the New Testament plus a big chunk of Acts.

The story of Abraham almost sacrificing Isaac, because they think God wouldn’t do that.

All the animal sacrifices, because PETA opposes those and God wouldn’t really command blood to be shed as payment for sins.

All the passages about God having the Northern Kingdom and then the Southern Kingdom taken into captivity for disobeying him and worshiping other gods, because the god of liberal theologians would never do that!

The beginning of the book of Acts, because it has Jesus there after a physical resurrection.

All the passages about judgment and Hell (that’s a whole bunch of the red letters, btw).

All the Gospel presentations in Acts, because they never mention how much God loves us unconditionally but they continually mention that Jesus died and rose again for our sins and that we are commanded to repent and believe.

1 Corinthians 15, because it claims that Jesus was physically resurrected.

Most of the passages about the crucifixion being God’s idea, because that would be divine child abuse.

All the claims for Jesus’ divinity.

All the claims for the virgin birth.

All Jesus’ miracles, because they “know” those couldn’t have really happened.

All the Gospel accounts of Jesus rising from the dead.

All the passages saying Jesus died for our sins.

All the passages about sinners and how humans can’t be good on their own.

All the passages about Satan and demons (there are more than you might think).

Most of the passages about human sexuality, marriage and parenting, because they view that version of God as homophobic, misogynistic and hopelessly politically incorrect.

All passages about God’s wrath.

They even have to take out Leviticus 19:18 (” . . . love your neighbor as yourself”) because they dismiss the rest of Leviticus with their flawed “God hates shrimp”argument.

Pretty much all of Revelation, and especially chapters 2-3 where Jesus addresses the faults of many churches.

And so many more!  Truly, they are the original Dalmatian Theologians, claiming that the Bible is only inspired in spots and that they are inspired to spot the spots, or Advanced Dalmatian Theologians, where God is also changing spots and adding/removing spots, and, oddly enough, He is only telling theological liberals and progressives.

Leave a comment with others I missed and I’ll update the post.

So what’s left? Roughly a dozen verses, which they take out of context or just plain misinterpret.  Examples:

  1. Matthew 7:1 Judge not, that you be not judged. They don’t have time to read the next 4 verses that explain how He meant not to judge hypocritically – which, ironically, is exactly what they do when they use that verse in isolation to judge you.
  2. Matthew 5:39 But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. They use that to oppose capital punishment, among other things, even though it is hard to turn the other cheek if you are the victim of murder and to apply it would mean you’d oppose not only capital punishment for murderers but any punishment at all.
  3. Matthew 25:40 And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ They love mentioning the least of these to justify asking Caesar to take from neighbor A to give to neighbor B, but of course that isn’t what Jesus meant.  And they ignore the other language of eternal judgment in the passage.  Oh, and they are pro-legalized abortion and pro-taxpayer-funded abortion, which means they are pro-abortion.  I can’t reconcile that with helping the “least of these” or with loving your neighbor.

Seriously, we have a precise, highly technical theological term for people who hold those views about the Bible: Non-Christians.  Run, don’t walk, from their “churches.”  Highlight their errors until your throats are raw and your fingertips are calloused.  It is the loving thing to do for scores of their church members headed towards Hell.  Jesus didn’t die on the cross for us to ignore those who claim his name then lie about him.  He didn’t call us to be politically correct.

An honest but still inconsistent atheist

Even when atheists try to be candid and concede many of our points, they still have trouble being consistent with their worldview.  Via An atheist explains the real consequences of adopting an atheistic worldview.

Let us stop sugar coating it. I know, it’s hard to come out and be blunt with the friendly Theists who frequent sites like this. However in your efforts to “play nice” and “be civil” you actually do them a great disservice.

We are Atheists. We believe that the Universe is a great uncaused, random accident. All life in the Universe past and future are the results of random chance acting on itself. While we acknowledge concepts like morality, politeness, civility seem to exist, we know they do not. Our highly evolved brains imagine that these things have a cause or a use, and they have in the past, they’ve allowed life to continue on this planet for a short blip of time. But make no mistake: all our dreams, loves, opinions, and desires are figments of our primordial imagination. They are fleeting electrical signals that fire across our synapses for a moment in time. They served some purpose in the past. They got us here. That’s it. All human achievement and plans for the future are the result of some ancient, evolved brain and accompanying chemical reactions that once served a survival purpose. Ex: I’ll marry and nurture children because my genes demand reproduction, I’ll create because creativity served a survival advantage to my ancient ape ancestors, I’ll build cities and laws because this allowed my ape grandfather time and peace to reproduce and protect his genes. My only directive is to obey my genes. Eat, sleep, reproduce, die. That is our bible.

I’m glad he was candid about his core beliefs. That is useful in exposing atheism. But even when they are trying to be honest they are still inconsistent:

So be nice if you want. Be involved, have polite conversations, be a model citizen. Just be aware that while technically an Atheist, you are an inferior one.

But he just got through saying there is no standard and glibly states he is just obeying his DNA. How can he say someone else’s atheism is inferior?

You’re just a little bit less evolved, that’s all.

Again, there’s that standard implying that more evolution is better than less.

I know it’s not PC to speak so bluntly about the ramifications of our beliefs, but in our discussions with Theists we sometimes tip toe around what we really know to be factual. Maybe it’s time we Atheists were a little more truthful and let the chips fall where they may.

Again, why be more truthful if there is no merit in it? And why persuade anyone to do anything if we are all just obeying our DNA anyway?

Here’s why: Because their worldview is foolish rebellion.

Romans 1:18–20 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.

More bad news: You’ll be judged on the standard of Jesus, not by comparing your best traits to your neighbor’s worst traits.  All your deepest, darkest secrets will be brought to light and judged by a holy and perfect God.

Romans 2:15-16 They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus.

Favorite dish of the theological Left & skeptics: Shellfish

This is one of my all-time favorites bits, originally posted in 2007.  It addresses a very common argument used by atheists and those on the theological Left.  The argument they use is wildly illogical but never seems to go away.

I just added another response at the end that I can’t believe I didn’t put in the first time: The claim that Christians are inconsistent if they say homosexual behavior is a sin if they don’t also avoid shellfish, mixed fibers, etc. would mean that they anyone claiming to be Christian who complained about bestiality, child sacrifice, adultery, gay-bashing, etc. would also be inconsistent if they didn’t obey the Jewish ceremonial laws.  That is transparently false.  You should use this counter-argument against “Christians” making the shellfish / mixed fiber / etc. claim: Unless you also follow the Jewish ceremonial laws, then you shouldn’t advocate for any of your [allegedly] biblical views about government, helping the poor, gays, abortion, etc.

—– 

shellfish.jpgAs always, this is about careful thinking and proper analysis of the Bible and not about picking on homosexuals.  We are all sinners in need of a Savior.

Many liberal theologians, skeptics and pro-gay lobbyists use the “shellfish” argument to undermine and/or dismiss parts of the Bible they disagree with, often mocking about how they love shrimp and such.  They use the same reasoning with other Old Testament restrictions such as not eating pork or mixing fibers in garments.  This video by Jack Black is a recent example.

Their argument goes like this:

  • Yes, Leviticus 18:22 says Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
  • But Leviticus 11:10 says, And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of all the living creatures that are in the waters, they are an abomination unto you
  • Therefore, the Bible cannot be the word of God and homosexual behavior must be moral because the Bible is an undependable, contradictory book that equates shrimp eating with sexual immorality.  And people who teach that homosexual behavior is a sin are bigoted hypocrites who only follow the parts of the Bible they like.

Here’s a sample of how they present their conclusions.  Search for Leviticus shellfish or see sites like God Hates Shrimp for more examples.

The above exercise proves that anti-gay fundamentalists selectively quote the Bible. They enthusiastically and openly embrace those parts of the Bible which affirm and justify their own personal, pre-existing prejudice against gay people, while declining to become as enthusiastic about verses like the ones listed above.

After all, how many times have you heard a fundamentalist say that eating shellfish was an abomination? But they sure don’t hesitate to say it about gay people, do they? What does that tell you?

Actually, I find those questions to be ironic, because I think the facts will show which side is most likely to pre-judge, selectively quote the Bible and take it too literally.  I hope they take this analysis seriously and reconsider whether their premises and conclusions were sound.

On the one hand, their argument is effective because it is catchy and very few people know how to respond to it.  Many people can’t even articulate the simple Gospel.  When was the last time anyone read Leviticus?

On the other hand, their argument is ineffective because the facts do not support it.  Also, it deliberately and unnecessarily undermines confidence in the word of God.  I expect that from skeptics and non-believers, but I am always disappointed that those claiming to be Christians use it to attack the word of God.

The argument appeals to those who take passages literally when it suits them.  Both passages say abomination (or detestable, depending on what translation you read), don’t they?  And if eating shellfish is obviously a morally neutral act then homosexual behavior must be as well, right?

However, if you follow the basic principle of reading things in context and you attempt to understand the original languages better on difficult or controversial passages, then you’ll realize that the shellfish argument is not supported by the facts.

The short version: There were different Hebrew words translated as abomination.  They were used differently in the individual verses and were used very differently in broader contexts.  The associated sins had radically different consequences and had 100% different treatments in the New Testament.  

The longer version

1. The words translated abomination in the original Hebrew are different.  In Lev. 11:10, it means detestable thing or idol, an unclean thing, an abomination, detestation.  This word is typically used in the Bible to describe unclean animals.

In Lev. 18:22 the Hebrew term תּוֹעֵבָה (toevah, rendered “detestable act”) refers to the repugnant practices of foreigners.  As noted below, the word is also used to describe bestiality, child sacrifice and incest.

Therefore, the whole “same word!” argument self-destructs immediately.

2. Even a plain reading of the passages shows that the homosexual behavior is considered detestable to God, whereas the shellfish are to be detestable to the Israelites because it made them ceremonially unclean.  Those are key differences.  Being detestable to God is quite a bit different than being detestable to a person.

3. The broader contexts show completely different types of regulations.  Read Leviticus 11 and Leviticus 18 yourself and note the contexts.  I’ll wait here.

The beginning and end of chapter 11 make it clear that this passage is about dietary rules just for the Israelites:

Leviticus 11:1-2 The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Say to the Israelites: ‘Of all the animals that live on land, these are the ones you may eat:

Leviticus 11:46-47 These are the regulations concerning animals, birds, every living thing that moves in the water and every creature that moves about on the ground. You must distinguish between the unclean and the clean, between living creatures that may be eaten and those that may not be eaten.

Now consider the beginning and end of chapter 18, where the Israelites are told not to be like the pagan Canaanites.  God expected the Canaanites to follow these moral laws and was about to vomit them out of the land for failing to do so.  Therefore, they obviously weren’t Jewish ceremonial laws.

Leviticus 18:1-3 The Lord said to Moses, “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘I am the Lord your God. You must not do as they do in Egypt, where you used to live, and you must not do as they do in the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you. Do not follow their practices.

Leviticus 18:30 Keep my requirements and do not follow any of the detestable customs that were practiced before you came and do not defile yourselves with them. I am the Lord your God.”

4. The punishments for eating shellfish and homosexual behavior were radically different.  There were about 15 things in the Israelite theocracy that could result in capital punishment, and homosexual behavior was one of them (And no, I’m not suggesting that should be the punishment today.  The punishments were for the Israelite theocracy, which is clear when you read the context of those passages.)  But eating shellfish just made one ceremonially unclean for a period of time.

Again, note how the moral laws with their steep punishments are tied to offenses God held the pagans responsible for, yet the unclean animal passages were for the Israelites only and were brief (It could have been for health reasons and/or symbolic reasons.  Animals on the ground were like the serpent and thus symbolized sin and pagan religions often sacrificed pigs).

 Leviticus 20:13 “‘If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.

Leviticus 20:22-26 Keep all my decrees and laws and follow them, so that the land where I am bringing you to live may not vomit you out. You must not live according to the customs of the nations I am going to drive out before you. Because they did all these things, I abhorred them. But I said to you, “You will possess their land; I will give it to you as an inheritance, a land flowing with milk and honey.” I am the Lord your God, who has set you apart from the nations.

‘You must therefore make a distinction between clean and unclean animals and between unclean and clean birds. Do not defile yourselves by any animal or bird or anything that moves along the ground—those which I have set apart as unclean for you. You are to be holy to me because I, the Lord, am holy, and I have set you apart from the nations to be my own.

5. The ceremonial dietary laws were clearly and emphatically overturned in the New Testament, whereas the commands against homosexual behavior (and other sexual sins) were not.   Also see Acts 15:28-29 (It seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us not to burden you with anything beyond the following requirements: You are to abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality. You will do well to avoid these things. Farewell.)

6. The claim that Christians are inconsistent if they say homosexual behavior is a sin if they don’t also avoid shellfish, mixed fibers, etc. would mean that they anyone claiming to be Christian who complained about bestiality, child sacrifice, adultery, gay-bashing, etc. would also be inconsistent if they didn’t obey the Jewish ceremonial laws.  That is transparently false.  You should use this counter-argument against “Christians” making the shellfish / mixed fiber / etc. claim: Unless you also follow the Jewish ceremonial laws, then you shouldn’t advocate for any of your [allegedly] biblical views about government, helping the poor, gays, abortion, etc.

And if someone tries to play the “Leviticus is outdated” card, remind them of this verse and ask if it still counts: Leviticus 19:18 “‘Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord.”

Remember, anyone calling themselves a Christian should be seeking to hold the same views as Jesus.  And Jesus fully supported the Old Testament law — every last letter and mark.

Here’s another answer from Tektonics, a terrific apologetics website:

A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an abomination – Lev. 11:10, it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don’t agree. Can you settle this? Aren’t there ‘degrees’ of abomination?

The point of this question – aside from the matter of not knowing what ritual purity is all about – is lost; if there is a sincere interest in knowing if there are “degrees” of abomination, just ask this simple question: Are there degrees to which things may be found “abominable”? Are the works of a robber baron not less abominable than those of a murderous dictator? In any event, if shellfish is a matter of ritual purity only, and homosexuality is a matter of higher morals as argued, then indeed, eating shellfish would have been a lesser abomination. (Indeed, the fact that the words used for “abomination” in both passages are different suggests that by itself. The word used for the shellfish is used only a few times in the OT, always of unclean animals, whereas the word used for homosexuality is used for things like bestiality, incest, and child sacrifice!)

So if anyone uses the shellfish argument with you, ask a few questions to see if they have really thought it through.  Everyone I have ever seen use it was either unaware of these responses or deliberately ignoring them. 

Also see Problems with Pro-Gay Theology and Responding to Pro-Gay Theology.

A&E shocked to find out that Phil Robertson, a Christian, believes the word of God.

Breaking news: ‘Duck Dynasty’s’ Phil Robertson on Indefinite Hiatus Following Anti-Gay Remarks.

I think they picked on the wrong guy.  This should be interesting.  I’m pretty sure that the Duck Dynasty fans won’t take kindly to Phil Robertson being shelved for speaking his mind about what God says about human sexuality and sin.  I’m reminded of Esther 4:14 For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”

A&E has placed Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson on indefinite hiatus following anti-gay remarks he made in a recent profile in GQ.

“We are extremely disappointed to have read Phil Robertson’s comments in GQ, which are based on his own personal beliefs and are not reflected in the series Duck Dynasty,” A&E said in a statement. “His personal views in no way reflect those of A+E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely.”

My guess is that Phil won’t be back without an apology from A&E.  He already threatened to cancel the show for making it look like they were swearing with fake bleeps and for cutting out the prayers and mentions of Jesus.

The news comes after Robertson compared homosexuality to bestiality in an interview with the magazine. He’ll likely appear in season four, which bows Jan. 15, since production is largely wrapped.

Their problem is with God, not Phil Robertson.  Homosexual behavior and bestiality were condemned by God in subsequent verses in Leviticus 18: 22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination. 23 And you shall not lie with any animal and so make yourself unclean with it, neither shall any woman give herself to an animal to lie with it: it is perversion.  

100% of the verses addressing homosexual behavior describe it as sin in the clearest and strongest possible terms.  100% of the verses referring to God’s ideal for marriage involve one man and one woman.  100% of the verses referencing parenting involve moms and dads with unique roles (or at least a set of male and female parents guiding the children). 0% of 31,173 Bible verses refer to homosexual behavior in a positive or even benign way or even hint at the acceptability of homosexual unions of any kind.

“It seems like, to me, a vagina — as a man — would be more desirable than a man’s anus,” Robertson says in the January issue of the men’s magazine.

And he’s right.  That is part of the pathology.  Gays have 40+ times higher rates of Syphilis and HIV, partly because 62% of men who know they are HIV-positive have unprotected sex with men.  How twisted is that to deliberately have sex with people knowing you could be giving them a deadly disease?  Why isn’t that front page news?

“That’s just me. I’m just thinking: There’s more there! She’s got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I’m saying? But hey, sin: It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical.”

 

During a discussion about repentance and God, Robertson is asked what he finds sinful.

“Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there,” he says. “Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men.”

He goes on to paraphrase Corinthians: “Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers — they won’t inherit the kingdom of God. Don’t deceive yourself. It’s not right.”

Yep.  Note how he also included sleeping with lots of women as a sin.  Will the fornicators call him a hater as well?

GLAAD on Wednesday condemned his remarks as “some of the vilest and most extreme statements uttered against LGBT people in a mainstream publication” and said “his quote was littered with outdated stereotypes and blatant misinformation.”

“Phil and his family claim to be Christian, but Phil’s lies about an entire community fly in the face of what true Christians believe,” GLAAD spokesperson WilsonCruz said. “He clearly knows nothing about gay people or the majority of Louisianans — and Americans — who support legal recognition for loving and committed gay and lesbian couples.

Uh, sure, because GLAAD is the go-to source for authentic Christian beliefs!  And note how they refer to allegedly popular opinion and not what the Bible says.

Phil’s decision to push vile and extreme stereotypes is a stain on A&E and his sponsors, who now need to re-examine their ties to someone with such public disdain for LGBT people and families.”

Robertson released his own statement in response: “I myself am a product of the ’60s; I centered my life around sex, drugs and rock and roll until I hit rock bottom and accepted Jesus as my Savior. My mission today is to go forth and tell people about why I follow Christ and also what the Bible teaches, and part of that teaching is that women and men are meant to be together. However, I would never treat anyone with disrespect just because they are different from me. We are all created by the Almighty and like Him, I love all of humanity. We would all be better off if we loved God and loved each other.”

So Phil admits he was a sinner who needed a Savior, and now he wants to tell other sinners about that Savior.  Oh, the humanity!

Duck Dynasty has become a breakout hit for A&E, regularly luring 9 million-plus viewers.

A&E milks Duck Dynasty.  I started watching it last Summer.  Based on how quickly they fill up my Tivo, they seem to do daily DD marathons.  I hope that the rest of the cast backs Phil up and that A&E loses millions over this.

. . .

The Human Rights Campaign also slammed Robertson for his remarks.

For starters, remember that the Human Rights Campaign people are pro-abortion extremists, which is rather odd considering that the ultimate human right should involve protection against being crushed and dismembered because you are unwanted.

“Phil Robertson’s remarks are not consistent with the values of our faith communities or the scientific findings of leading medical organizations,” president Chad Griffin said in a statement. “We know that being gay is not a choice someone makes, and that to suggest otherwise can be incredibly harmful.

Those are lies.  The HRC knows about as much about the Bible as GLAAD, and the science is clear: People are not “born that way.”  Lots of people move in and out of those preferences.  Things change.

Yes, the show is corny and stiff at times and obviously staged.  But it is so refreshing to see positive family situations where dads are leaders in the house and not buffoons, and where people openly talk of faith and live it out.   It shows how far this society has fallen that someone could make such simple, biblical statements and have people go into full freak-out mode over it.

I’m cautiously optimistic that Phil won’t be the kind of guy to back down over this and that the media and entertainment elites won’t know what to do about it.  Hopefully it will inspire other people to stand up for the truth.  One day all believers will face God.  You’ll have all of eternity to remember whether you had the guts to call a sin a sin.  As Erick Erickson says, Ultimately There Will Be No Option for Silence or the Sidelines. You Will Be Made To Care.  If you can’t affirm the truth of God’s word then you should get out now.

Having said that, remember that we’re all sinners in need of a Savior.  You don’t have to “fix” LGBTQ people before sharing the Good News with them.  Here’s an example of how I handle situations like that.

——–

Further reading:

Opposing late term abortions is good morality and good politics

Republican politicians have a bad habit of either ignoring abortion or saying stupid things about it.  I addressed easy ways to fix the stupid things problem in How pro-life apologetics–and a little common sense–could have swayed the elections.  But that was more about making proper arguments when asked about the issue.

But does that mean they should otherwise avoid the topic?  Not at all, especially when considering issues like late term abortions, where 70% of people agree with us.  Remember, the Democrats are on record as pro-abortion extremists.  I say that without hyperbole.  Taxpayer-funded late term abortions are right there in their platform:

The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right.

Via A Winning Issue: Abortion and Pascal’s Wager, check out the impact of taking this issue on in Virginia, where Ken Cuccinelli found out too late how to take on Terry McAuliffe..

What moved the voters most was an attack on McAuliffe’s positions on abortion; a single phone message emphasizing McAuliffe’s support for unrestricted, late-term, and taxpayer-funded abortions shifted support a net 13 to 15 points away from McAuliffe and toward Cuccinelli. The cost per vote here was a remarkably cheap $0.50 per additional vote, and even less expensive still when targeting the most persuadable segment of the electorate.

. . .

Essentially, this paper presents the abortion issue as a political version of Pascal’s Wager. For a GOP candidate running for office and ignoring abortion is not possible. You have to decide to be either a sufficiently virulent variety pro-abort that makes it impossible for you to be attacked by Planned Parenthood or you have to be vocally pro-life and attack the issue head on.

The decision should be easy.  Abortion is criminal. There is no medical reason for abortion. Late term abortion is indistinguishable from infanticide. Abortion has nothing to do with women’s rights and everything to do with how we value the most vulnerable members of our society. Every culture that has embrace abortion has inevitably moved on to embraced post-partum infanticide and euthanasia.

There is no reason our candidates should refuse to take a stand against abortion, but especially against late term abortion. It is not only moral, it is good politics.

So be prepared with sound arguments and don’t avoid the topic!  Again, the Democrats are on record as pro-abortion extremists.  Republicans should remind people of that all day, every day.

P.S. Opposing all abortions is good morality and good politics as well, if you do it right.

Dear theologically weak churches: Here’s how to save millions on your next church building expansion!

Don’t expand, but preach the Bible more faithfully.  That will clear some space in the pews and the parking lot.

Sure, things have gotten crowded and you are sure you need more space.  But there is a win-win solution that is far superior to wasting more money on facilities: Just preach verse-by-verse through the Bible faithfully and accurately.  You won’t pull up all the tares, but enough of them will transplant themselves to other watered-down churches or leave altogether that you’ll have plenty of space.  And that’s OK!  Trust God with the process.

Worried about losing money?  That could happen, but my guess is that your committed believers are the biggest donors anyway.  And your faithful teaching will probably result in more authentic converts attending your church.

It comes down to this: Do you trust the word of God to accomplish what the word of God promises it will do, or do you have to edit it on his behalf?  Sounds absurd, right?  Yet that is what countless churches do.

Yes, you’ll chase some people away if you go verse-by-verse through Romans 1 and explain what it really means.  But here’s an easy out: Just tell them that if they don’t like it, their problem is with God, not you.  It completely takes you off the hook.

And yes, I know that some non-believers may be converted while at your watered-down church.  By God’s grace it happened to me, but it was in spite of the church I was attending, not because of it.  But again, do you trust

And maybe you’ll convict some people in the process.  The worst-case scenario is that you’ll honor God.

Warning: Your church might grow like crazy, though.  My youngest daughter’s church is in a very Leftist city.  Yet they joke that as they preached on sin (with a balance of grace, of course) each week through the book of Romans they grew dramatically.

If we did this right we could go decades without building new churches.  We’ve got all the buildings we need for those that are authentically seeking God.

One of the best blog posts I’ve seen. Really.

And I’ve read tens of thousands.  There is a reason that Matt Walsh’s blog readership is growing like crazy.  He has great writing and a sense of humor along with a solidly Christian worldview.

This is one of the best apologetic pieces I’ve seen, and a terrific eye-opener for the atheists who just spout silly sound bites.  Via Why do you Christians always throw the Bible in my face? | The Matt Walsh Blog.  Go read it all.

Seriously, it hurts. Stop it, will ya? Yesterday I walked by a church and the pastor barreled out of the door, ran into the street, screamed “BIBLE!” and chucked it right at my head.

Well, that didn’t LITERALLY happen. But he did say, “good afternoon, God bless,” which is basically the same thing.

In any case, Christians are always shoving their religion in people’s faces. Everything they say, every position they hold, every thought they express — it’s all RELIGION. Even if they don’t explicitly say, “I think this because of my religion,” we all know the score. If it comes from RELIGION, as a secularist, I must hate it. If it’s been heavily influenced or transformed by RELIGION or RELIGIOUS people, I must hate it. That’s why I’m not a big fan of art, architecture, democracy, science, medicine, philosophy, astronomy, the university system, the abolition of slavery, America, Natural Law, Natural Rights, mathematics, the justice system, literature, music, and civilization.

Devious. Devious Christians. It’s like they have this secret plot and they use all of these methods to subversively give glory to their fake sky wizard. That’s a good line, isn’t it? I take this idea of God; the uncaused cause, the first mover, the Creator, the Absolute, the Answer to the riddle that no quantum physicist has ever been able to solve, and I equate it to a “wizard.” As if belief in dimensions of existence that transcend our physical plane can somehow be fairly compared to belief in magical Disney creatures. It’s an effective tactic, isn’t it? Aquinas, DaVinci, Shakespeare, Washington — most of the intellectual giants and great leaders in the past two thousand years have been guided by this conviction, but I can utterly dismiss it with one sarcastic and belittling phrase. There are thousands and thousands and thousands and thousands of pages of Christian apologetics written by some of the smartest men and women to ever walk the face of the Earth, yet I can chalk it all up to something as absurd as the Tooth Fairy. And you know what? I can do that without even reading ANY of those pages! You know why? Because I’m a critical thinker, my friend.

A critical thinker — I think about criticizing things. And then I do, without understanding the depth, enormity and beauty of that which I mock.

Stupid Christians. Stupid Christians and their “truth.” You know what they do, don’t you? They all meet in dark rooms around small tables and plot their continued peaceful takeover of the planet. That’s why they prowl all over the Earth, trying to spread their “message” to the disaffected masses. These people – they’re everywhere. You can’t find a single corner, crevice, desert, or third world wasteland that isn’t infested by Christians and their “charities”, and their “hospitals”, and their “ministries”. Believe me, I’ve tried. Sure, it’s getting better here in this country. Christians did the work of settling, building and establishing our nation, but then, in the 1960s, us anti-theists chimed in and said, “thanks, but we’ll take it from here.” There just wasn’t nearly enough nudity, drug usage, and nihilistic apathy, and we knew there never would be if Christians kept running the show. Oh, AND we led the Civil Rights Movement.

Well, the icon of Civil Rights was a reverend, but still.

I’ve tried to escape these Christians. I went to Ethiopia, thinking, surely, I’ll be free of their propaganda in this forsaken pocket of poverty and misery. But what did I see? Christians. Christians down there in the muck and the dirt, serving and loving and healing. Nobody else. Just them. They can never mind their business, can they? Oh don’t give them credit for this “charity.” They’re only doing it out of obedience, reverence and faith. Selfish jerks.

And so I left that place and I traveled east, and then south, and then back north, and still I found them. Everywhere, I found them. I found them in places where their kind is tortured, murdered and persecuted. But they remain. They stay and they spread their Gospel like a virus. It’s quite sad to see those who are brainwashed by it. They smile in the face of pain and sing songs of praise — PRAISE — while they suffer. Christians are far more ravenous and extreme in destitute countries. Hopefully the Christians in America never borrow even a fraction of the enthusiasm and passion that their brothers and sisters in the Third World possess.