I agree that it was a message from demons . . .

1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus

Lest anyone think this is gratuitous Catholic-bashing, please note that I spend way more time addressing false teachers within Protestantism.

The Mother Mary Facebook page shared this story about how demons allegedly fear Mary and her power for salvation.  These demons also give you tips on how to be saved — but only because they were allegedly forced to.  I completely agree that the message is demonic in nature, just not in the way the author intended it.  I see these possibilities:

1. A demon really said it, but was lying because Satan wants to confuse people about Mary’s role, take away glory from Jesus and keep people in bondage.

2. Someone made it up as “evidence” of the Catholic Church’s false claims about Mary.  And we know who the father of lies is.

This is only believable to those who don’t study the Bible and/or those who are hostile to its truths.

When Saint Dominic was preaching the Rosary near Carcassone, an Albigensian was brought to him who was possessed by the devil. Saint Dominic exorcised him in the presence of a great crowd of people; it appears that over twelve thousand had come to hear him preach.

During the exorcism, the demon was forced to speak the following about devotion to the Mother of God: “Listen well, you Christians: the Mother of Jesus Christ is all-powerful, and She can save Her servants from falling into hell. She is the Sun which destroys the darkness of our wiles. It is She who uncovers our hidden plots, breaks our snares, and makes our temptations useless and ineffectual.

Please stop and consider for a moment whether a demon of Satan just might lie about how people are really saved. 

So we are supposed to be her servants and not Christ’s?  Mary is all-powerful?

The Holy Spirit forgot to mention any of that in the Bible when He addressed the faith once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 3).

“We have to say, however reluctantly, that not a single soul who has really persevered in Her service has ever been damned with us; one single sigh that She offers to the Blessed Trinity is worth far more than all the prayers, desires, and aspirations of all the saints.
“We fear Her more than all the other saints in Heaven together, and we have no success with Her faithful servants. Many Christians who call upon Her when they are in the hour of death, and who really ought to be damned according to our ordinary standards, are saved by Her intercession.

They slip up here when referring to “our ordinary standards.”  Uh, wouldn’t that be God’s standards that are involved with the damnation question?

“Oh, if only that Mary (it is thus in their fury that they called Her) had not pitted Her strength against ours and had not upset our plans, we should have conquered the Church and should have destroyed it long before this, and we would have seen to it that all of the Orders in the Church fell into error and disorder.

So they fear Mary but not Jesus?  Interesting.

“Now that we are forced to speak, we must also tell you this: nobody who perseveres in saying the Rosary will be damned, because She obtains for Her servants the grace of true contrition for their sins, and by means of this they obtain God’s forgiveness and mercy.”

So we’re saved by saying the rosary and not by repenting and believing in Jesus?  I missed that part in the Bible.  Must have been right after the part about vain repetition.

For the record, I think that some people in the Catholic church are saved but just don’t know what the foundations of the religion really are (works-based justification, Mariolatry, indulgences, purgatory, etc.).  I also think that many in the Protestant church aren’t saved.

But people who believe what that Facebook page said have some wildly inaccurate theology.  The comments there were as creepy and sad as the post itself.  I beg people to read the Bible for themselves and abandon these man-made / demon-made tales.  Read the Book of Acts, the history of the early church, and ask why Mary was only mentioned once — and that was merely noting her presence a room.  Why no mentions in Romans?  And 1 Corinthians?  And 2 Corinthians?  And so on.  If the Bible was given to us by the Catholic religion, as it falsely claims, then why doesn’t it include more about Mary?

This is from another post on that site.  I don’t recall any Bible verses about this, either.

mary

Roundup

Shocking Video: ‘Normal’ Muslims Supporting ‘Punishments in the Koran’ Like Stoning for Gays, Adulterers — So who are you going to believe, the false teachers and useful idiots who say that Islam is a religion of peace, or the words of these mainstream Muslims?  He claims that every Muslim has these views but doesn’t tell others about them.

The conference was held in Oslo and was sponsored by Islam.net. In the video clip in question the event’s moderator and organizer, Fahad Qureshi (seen above), openly asked the audience questions about the punishments in the Koran and if any agreed that such punishments are OK to use still today. Time after time the crowd enthusiastically agreed that the archaic punishments are perfectly acceptable to them even today. As he began, Qureshi asked, “How many of you are normal Muslims, Sunni Muslims?” Most in the audience raised their hands. Next he asked, “How many of you agree that men and women should sit separate?” Again most agreed. Qureshi then got more explicit. “How many of you agree that the punishment described in the Koran and sunna–whether it’s death, whether it is stoning for adultery, whatever it is, if it’s s from Allah and his messenger – that is the best punishment ever possible for humankind–and that is what we should apply in the world? Who agrees with that?” When nearly every one agreed again, he joked, “Are you all radical extremists? No one?” “So what’s the politicians gonna say now?” Qureshi concluded. “What’s the media gonna say now? That we’re all extremists?”

‘GAYS’ ADMIT ENDA GAME: OUTLAW CHRISTIAN MORALITY — You shouldn’t be surprised.

One of the most dangerous and discriminatory pieces of legislation in modern times – the ironically tagged “Employment Non-Discrimination Act,” or ENDA – passed the U.S. Senate on Thursday by a vote of 64-32. Ten Republicans disgracefully joined liberal Democrats in this effort to ultimately outlaw the Judeo-Christian sexual ethic. According to its leftist proponents, ENDA would merely insulate people who choose to engage in homosexual conduct (sexual orientation) or those who suffer from gender confusion (gender identity) against employment intolerance. In truth, however, this legislation effectively would codify the very thing it purports to combat: workplace discrimination. Writing in the Huffington Post, popular homosexual radio personality Michelangelo Signorile confessed that, of any potential ENDA legislation that might reach President Obama’s desk for his pledged signature, “none should include any religious exemptions” whatsoever. If Signorile and other “LGBT” activists get their way, this would mean that churches, mosques, synagogues, religious schools, Bible bookstores, as well as any and every other business in America with 15 or more employees, would be forced, under penalty of law, to abandon the biblical and traditional-values viewpoint on human sexuality, and hire (and otherwise not offend) those who openly flaunt expressly sinful and demonstrably self-destructive sexual behaviors. Though in its current form ENDA contains an extremely weak religious exemption that might – and I mean might – partially protect some churches and religious organizations (until they’re sued by “gay” activists), this so-called exemption would leave most others – such as the aforementioned Bible bookstores and many Christian schools and para-church organizations – entirely unprotected. It would additionally crush individual business owners’ guaranteed First Amendment rights. Although Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., attempted to amend the bill to strengthen religious protections, his amendment was shot down 55-43. Unbelievably, he voted for ENDA anyway. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., on the other hand, wasn’t even considerate enough to feign concern for the First Amendment. He promised homosexual pressure groups that Democrats would remove all protections for Christians and other people of faith on the flipside – after ENDA passed. The homosexual news site Washington Blade reports that homosexual activist Derek Washington of “GetEqual” confirmed Reid’s promise. In a conference call with homosexual activists last week, Washington admitted that Reid vowed, as goes any religious exemption, “the main thing to do was get the vote taken care of, and then deal with it later. As often times happens, you don’t get something perfect the first time around, you go back and fix it later, so that was basically his take on it.” According to the Blade, “That account was corroborated by Faiz Shakir, a Reid spokesperson, who said the Democratic leader understands the concerns, but wants to get the bill passed first, then go back and address the exemptions.” They’ve stopped pretending, folks. This is about criminalizing Christianity.

In Hookups, Inequality Still Reigns — As if women needed any more reasons to avoid casual sex.

Like generations before them, many young women like Ms. Gadinsky are finding that casual sex does not bring the physical pleasure that men more often experience. New research suggests why: Women are less likely to have orgasms during uncommitted sexual encounters than in serious relationships.

Sexual orientation link to past: study — Still not “born that way.” Then again, Lady Gaga wrote a song saying otherwise, so there’s that rebuttal.

New Zealanders who identify themselves as homosexual or bisexual, or who have had a same-sex encounter or relationship, tend to come from more disturbed backgrounds, a University of Otago researcher has found. Information extracted from 13,000 face-to-face interviews clearly showed those with same-sexual or bisexual orientation were more likely to have experienced negative events in childhood, Associate Prof Elisabeth Wells said yesterday. People who had experienced sexual abuse as children were three times more likely to identity themselves as homosexual or bisexual than those who had not experienced abuse, she said. Also, the more adverse events someone experienced in childhood, the more likely they were to belong to one of the “non-exclusively heterosexual” groups.

Coming Next: Race-Based Car Loans — Because car dealers and banks would much rather be racist than make money by selling to people who are likely to repay their loans.

And even more against the “born that way” lie — Evidence that teens CAN change sexual orientation.  Don’t expect that to be taught in so-called “comprehensive” sex ed classes.

The Rosary — from the Sola Sisters on Facebook.

A Christianized pagan ritual to assuage the consciences of those enslaved to the dead religious system of Roman Catholicism.

rosary

Satan knows where your lost keys are.

No, the title isn’t the worst name ever for a horror film.  It is the thought that goes through my mind when I read things like Novena [a devotion] to Saint Anthony to Find a Lost Article –The Patron Saint of Lost and Found:

St. Anthony of Padua is invoked thousands (maybe millions!) of times daily to help find items that have been lost. This novena, or nine-day prayer, to find a lost article reminds us as well that the most important goods are spiritual.

NOVENA TO SAINT ANTHONY TO FIND A LOST ARTICLE

St. Anthony, perfect imitator of Jesus, who received from God the special power of restoring lost things, grant that I may find [name the item] which has been lost. At least restore to me peace and tranquility of mind, the loss of which has afflicted me even more than my material loss. To this favor, I ask another of you: that I may always remain in possession of the true good that is God. Let me rather lose all things than lose God, my supreme good. Let me never suffer the loss of my greatest treasure, eternal life with God. Amen.

I mean the title quite seriously.  This Anthony fellow is dead and there is no biblical support that he can hear the prayers of billions of people simultaneously in all their languages and that he then can tell you where to find your keys (or whatever you lost).

Let me break that out for emphasis.  Allegedly, he and other saints can:

  • Hear from billions of people at once and know which messages are for them
  • Understand all languages
  • Have the power to communicate back to you in some way

So having read the Bible through quite a few times I’m pretty skeptical of those claims.  Apparently people think that certain dead people can answer certain types of prayer requests.  It reminds of the line in This is Spinal Tap about St. Hubbins being the patron saint of quality footwear (see the 2:03 mark here).

But guess who does know where your keys are?  Satan and/or his demons.  I think it is much more likely that any prayer to Anthony is being “answered” by Satan, because by praying to the dead you opened yourself up to it.

I encourage people to read the Bible and just go straight to Jesus.  There is one mediator between God and man, and He is Jesus.  Do not pray to Mary or any other human being, dead or alive.  Just stick with any member of the Trinity, or any combination of the three.

Now let’s talk about Mother Teresa . . .

. . . because taking on Gandhi last week wasn’t enough.

First, I must say that I appreciated her anti-abortion efforts.  I love how she got in the faces of Clinton et al on the topic.  Good for her.

But theologically speaking, I have some sizable issues with her.  These articles explained them well:

First, The Myth of Other Teresa:

She was revered around the world as an example of Christian love and charity and as someone who dedicated her life to the noble cause of advancing the gospel to the poor and needy of the world while caring for their physical needs. Her legacy will doubtless be as one of history’s great humanitarians.

Upon examination, though, the Mother Teresa portrayed by the media and popularized in our culture is glorified (soon to be beatified) and almost deified. A close examination of her beliefs and the work she did shows that her legacy may be little more than fiction. . . . We also see her belief that Mary, the mother of Jesus, is a mediator between God and ourselves (see Catholic Catechism, paragraph #969#1172 and #494) and as such, plays a role in our salvation. . . .Through the entire book there is never a hint that she relies on Christ alone for her salvation. Rather we read things like, “I’ve always said we should help a Hindu become a better Hindu, a Muslim become a better Muslim, a Catholic become a better Catholic” . . . “I love all religions. … If people become better Hindus, better Muslims, better Buddhists by our acts of love, then there is something else growing there.” Or in another place, “All is God — Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, etc., all have access to the same God.”

Her soteriology (he doctrine of salvation through Jesus Christ) was a train-wreck:

“We never try to convert those who receive [aid from Missionaries of Charity] to Christianity but in our work we bear witness to the love of God’s presence and if Catholics, Protestants, Buddhists, or agnostics become for this better men — simply better — we will be satisfied. It matters to the individual what church he belongs to. If that individual thinks and believes that this is the only way to God for her or him, this is the way God comes into their life — his life. If he does not know any other way and if he has no doubt so that he does not need to search then this is his way to salvation.”

. . . Time and again we see her expounding such universalist beliefs. In an interview with Christian News a nun who worked with Mother Teresa was asked the following in regards to the Hindus they worked with, “These people are waiting to die. What are you telling them to prepare them for death and eternity?” She replied candidly, “We tell them to pray to their Bhagwan, to their gods.”

Huh?!  But the Bible teaches over 100 times that Jesus is the only way to salvation!  You can’t miss it.

And she chose to let people suffer:

Contradictions in her beliefs, then, are apparent. We see similar contradictions in her humanitarian work. The common belief is that Mother Teresa worked with the sick and destitute to lovingly return them to health. An examination of her missions will show that this is far from the case. Mother Teresa believed that there is spiritual value in suffering. Once, when tending to a patient dying of cancer, she said “You are suffering like Christ on the cross. So Jesus must be kissing you.” (Christoper Hitchens – The Missionary Position: Mother Teresa in Theory and Practice, p. 41). For this reason she would not prescribe pain killers in her clinics, choosing instead to allow her patients to experience the suffering that she believed would bring them closer to Christ. Despite the tens of millions of dollars donated to her charity each year, her missions were rudimentary and offered no real health care. Her missions mainly catered to the critically ill and simply afforded them a place to go to die. It is interesting to note that when Mother Teresa became ill she would travel to the finest health care facilities to receive treatment. . . .

What, then, is the importance of debunking the myth of Mother Teresa? The answer is this. Pastors of Protestant churches around the world continue to speak of Mother Teresa in saintly terms. They hold her up as the ultimate example of self-sacrifice for the sake of the gospel. From the pulpits they discuss how she responded to Christ’s Great Commission to spread the gospel to all lands. The reality, though, is that if she preached at all, she preached a false religion. In so doing she provides us with an example not of a Christian responding to God’s call, but an example of deeds of charity and compassion completely separated from the Truth.

Also see Mother Teresa in her own words:

In an interview with her biographer, the following exchange was recorded:

Biographer Naveen Chawla: “Do you convert?” Mother Teresa: “Of course I convert. I convert you to be a better Hindu or a better Muslim or a better Protestant. Once you’ve found God, it’s up to you to decide how to worship him.”

That doesn’t sound very Christian.

Finally, see French study claims Mother Teresa not so saintly:

She was “anything but a saint,” the Canadian study authors found, as Newser reports. In fact, she found beauty in watching people suffer, the authors say.

The study is based on accounts of doctors who visited Mother Teresa’s so-called “homes for the dying.” The found terrible conditions, Newser reported — poor hygiene among patients, hunger, lacking medical supplies. Some patients were even denied necessary medical care, doctors said. Even Mother Teresa didn’t get care there — she went to an American hospital, Newser reported.

And the reported conditions weren’t for lack of money. Teresa’s Order of the Missionaries of Charity had hundreds of millions in donations, Newser reported.

The authors of the study allege the Vatican purposely ignored the truth of Mother Teresa’s charity. Rather, church officials helped to set the stage for her image as a saint, and even pushed through her beatification to avoid scrutiny.

Did she do some good?  I suppose so.  But it is unfortunate that she is held up as such an icon when her theology was false and her good deeds rather suspect.

Roundup

Thoughts on the new Pope: The Reformation happened for a reason.  Actually, 95 of them, and they are still valid reasons to avoid the Catholic church.  I deeply respect their positions on abortion, real marriage and various other topics, and I think that many Catholics are indeed saved — but in spite of what Rome teaches on sanctification, Mary and other topics, not because of what they teach on them.

Having said that, I like the conservative stances of the new Pope, and his humility in how he lives.  It is always good to see the Leftists in full pants-wetting mode over the fact that the head of the Catholic religion actually believes what the Catholic religion teaches.  How dare the Catholic leaders ignore the desires of those who oppose everything the leaders stand for?

More from the Nanny State: Lots of unintended consequences from the “ban” on large sodas (because people will never find a way around that, right?!  Everyone knows that Prohibition was a great success with no negative side effects.) — Nanny Bloomberg’s Big Sugary Drinks To Cause Problems With Coffee Shops.  It is a good thing that New York has solved all its other problems, such as how Eighty Percent of NYC High School Grads Lack Basic Reading Skills or how more than have of its black babies are killed in the womb.

Dunkin’ Donuts and McDonald’s will no longer add sugar at all. Dunkin’ is handing out fliers explaining what’s going on and have trained their workers to explain it all to customers. Some independent coffee shops have simply eliminated drinks above 16 ounces. There’s lots of confusion and angst. Starbucks is waiting for the result of the lawsuit filed against the city.

Canadian Supreme Court Ruling Has Implications for Christian Witness – coming soon to a country near you.  As always, the truth sounds like hate to those that hate the truth.

The ruling also states that suppression of “hate speech”—such as claiming that homosexual behavior is immoral—is so important that it justifies infringing on religious freedom and provides a basis for a “reasonable limit on freedom of religion and is demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society.” The court also explained that truth was no defense since “Truthful statements can be presented in a manner that would meet the definition of hate speech, and not all truthful statements must be free from restriction.”

This standard is then used to justify a draconian standard of censorship: If, despite the context of the entire publication, even one phrase or sentence is found to bring the publication, as a whole, in contravention of the Code, this precludes its publication in its current form.

. . . If criticism of homosexual behavior is construed as criticism of homosexuals then a “simple reading” of the Lev. 18 and context clearly shows that the passage “could objectively be viewed as hate speech.” While Canada’s Supreme Court justices may not understand what is in the “holy text” used by Christians, homosexual rights activists certainly do—and they will expect the legal system to consistently apply the logic of the Court’s ruling.

Equally troubling is that Christian ministers who condemn homosexual behavior can be subject to hate crime prosecution. Canada’s Supreme Court has determined that speaking out against destructive homosexual behaviors could be construed as vilification of homosexuals and therefore is prohibited in most circumstances. This is a radical standard that could severely hamper Christian witness.

Although Jesus said “the truth will set you free,” in Canada speaking the same truths proclaimed in God’s Word could potentially land Christians in jail.

What should we do when we visit the sick?  Click the link for more.

In summary, then, Calvin encourages all Christians, and especially ministers, to keep several things in mind as they visit the sick.

  1. People need the gospel more than ever when they are ill.
  2. Remind the sick from the word of God that God is sovereign over their illness and has sent it for their good.
  3. If the illness is severe, comfort the sick with the sure knowledge that those who die in the Lord have nothing to fear.
  4. If the sick consider their sins to be light and trivial, teach them of the justice of God and call them to embrace the mercy of Christ.
  5. If the sick are afflicted in their consciences, help them find rest in Christ.
  6. Don’t be afraid to bring some small token of physical relief—books, flowers, balloons, games, movies, a homemade card.

The Democrats’ war on women continues: Dem: No Need For Guns, Just Tell Men Not To Rape.  When Republican’s say things a fraction as inflammatory as that it swings major elections.  When Democrats say it, the media yawns.

The Christian Alert had a write-up of how Richard Dawkins plays the “You only believe that because of where you are born” and the “evidence for God = evidence for unicorns” cards.   Ugh.  Typical poor reasoning from Dawkins.  Using that logic, he’s only an atheist because of where he was born.

And the unicorns / flying tea pot / flying spaghetti monster / etc. argument demonstrates the childishness and lack of seriousness of atheists like him.  To claim that the cosmological, teleological, historical, moral, etc. arguments are akin to those is a concession speech to their Romans 1 poster boy rebellion.

Good news: Arkansas legislature overrides veto, restores “heartbeat” abortion restrictions

I think I’ve posted this before, but someone passed it along and it is worth re-posting: 10 Questions a Pro-Choice Candidate Is Never Asked by the Media.  I would pay lots of money to see all politicians asked those questions, and to have the media force them to answer and not just change the subject.

Good news that someone didn’t succumb to moral schizophrenia: Surrogate Mom Given $10K to Abort “Imperfect Baby,” Rejects Offer

When it comes to babies who are diagnosed with some sort of fetal abnormality in the womb, the pressure is high from doctors, family members and society to have an abortion. That’s why approximately 90 percent of babies with Down syndrome, for example, become victims of abortion.

When a surrogacy pregnancy is involved, the pressure brought to bear is only intensified.

But one surrogate mother has rejected that pressure — and an offer of $10,000 to have an abortion. Crystal Kelley was offered $10,000 to have an abortion after ultrasounds showed the baby she was carrying for another couple had severe medical problems.

Courtesy of Right Klik: “If you’re worried about getting killed by a gun, you should be about 5300% more worried about dying of heart disease.”

A fun way to finish – some of Dan Phillips’ #CheckYourJesus tweets:

If the “Jesus” you worship isn’t too jazzed about every bit of God’s Word, you might want to#CheckYourJesus
— Dan Phillips (@BibChr) March 5, 2013

If the “Jesus” you worship wants everyone to have his “best life now,” you’d better#CheckYourJesus
— Dan Phillips (@BibChr) March 6, 2013

If the “Jesus” you worship doesn’t love the church, you’d better #CheckYourJesus

— Dan Phillips (@BibChr) March 5, 2013

If the “Jesus” you worship says “Love” and you think “Statist bureaucracy confiscating & redistributing wealth,” you should #CheckYourJesus

— Dan Phillips (@BibChr) March 6, 2013

If your Jesus wouldn’t have cared about the RCC perverting the Gospel and the Word bec they’re pro-life, you should #CheckYourJesus

— Dan Phillips (@BibChr) March 6, 2013

If your Jesus taught you to call everyone who actually does take His words srsly a “hater” or “self-righteous,” you’d better #CheckYourJesus

— Dan Phillips (@BibChr) March 6, 2013

If the “Jesus” you worship keeps handing you “God told me” cards without Bible verses on them, you’d better #CheckYourJesus
— Dan Phillips (@BibChr) March 6, 2013

If your “Jesus” is OK with you hating his bride, #CheckYourJesus

— Machel (@trogdor42) March 6, 2013

#checkYourJesus if He doesn’t forgive your sins, but rather justifies them.
— Frank Turk (@Frank_Turk) March 6, 2013

If you claim Christianity but don’t know the gospel #CheckYourJesus
— ❂Captain Morgan ⚓ (@MorganSteelman) March 6, 2013

If your Jesus wants you to pray to his earthly mother, you need to #CheckYourJesus
— Chris Rosebrough (@piratechristian) March 6, 2013

If you think grace can forgive your sin but not mortify it, time to #CheckYourJesus
— Machel (@trogdor42) March 6, 2013

If your “Jesus” has a generous orthodoxy & claims He has followers who are practicing Buddhists, Hindus & Muslims U need to #CheckYourJesus
— Chris Rosebrough (@piratechristian) March 6, 2013

Dear Catholics who voted for Obama,

Does this bother you at all?

  • The Democrats consider anyone who holds Catholic views on marriage to be “haters.”  The Pope himself would not be eligible to speak at Obama’s inauguration.
  • The official platform of the Democrats is to have unrestricted abortions funded by taxpayers.  They aren’t pro-choice, they are pro-abortion.
  • They are forcing your organizations to pay for birth control, including abortifacient drugs, and to permit same-sex couples to adopt children.  They would rather your hospitals and adoption clinics close down rather than relent on these issues.

If you vote for Democrats you should quit calling yourself Catholic.  They strenuously oppose your organization on the key social and moral issues of the day, and are working overtime to take away your religious freedoms.

Note: There is a reason I’m not Catholic — actually, 95 of them — but I have always appreciated their pro-family, pro-life views, and I know many “bad Catholics” who hold to the Protestant (i.e., biblical) view of justification.

Roundup

And then they are all mine – the real agenda of some college professors.  Hey parents, have you prepared your kids for these college educators who will take $100,000+ from your wallet while deliberately trying to separate them from your values and religion?   Church youth groups should focus more on apologetics and sound biblical analysis than entertainment.  Hat tip: Stan

Jesus.org looks like a very good set of resources by some solid contributors.

Liberals Spend Your Money Promoting Islam Overseas – what happened to that separation of church and state thingy?

Four Pointer has two great series going: “Paul Never Quoted Jesus,” where he demonstrates just how often Paul did quote the Lord directly or indirectly, and Jesus is Lord in _____, where he examines all the passages noting the deity of Christ.  Good stuff.

Catholic apologist would rather threaten to sue James White than agree to normal debate terms.  Sheesh, why not just stop whining and debate?

The poor and social justice – great summary of how theological Liberals misinterpret the Bible to make up their own gospel.  Here’s a sample:

…the alleviation of poverty is simply not the main storyline of Scripture. Some Christians talk like the Bible is almost entirely about the poor, as if the story from Genesis to Revelation is largely the story of God taking the side of the poor in an effort to raise the minimum wage and provide universal health care. As we tried to show earlier, the biblical narrative is chiefly concerned with how a holy God can dwell with an unholy people. Granted, one aspect of living a holy life is treating the poor with compassion and pursuing justice, but this hardly makes poverty the central theme in the Bible. If our story does not center on Jesus Christ, and the story of Jesus Christ does not center on his death and resurrection for sin, we have gotten the story all out of whack.

More evidence of the myth of pro-life democrats – why do they protest a 24 hour waiting period before a human being is destroyed, the choice to view an ultrasound of the human being about to be destroyed, or even health regulations of medical facilities?  They aren’t pro-choice, they are pro-abortion.

Nice summary by Ann Coulter:

Evidence for the Proposition That Liberals Lie About Republicans Being Racist: Video of a supporter of Rand Paul’s opponent pretending to be a racist Paul supporter; Oregon public school teacher Jason Levin caught operating a website asking liberals to show up at Tea Parties pretending to be right-wing racists; The New York Times’ Maureen Dowd claiming she heard Rep. Joe Wilson shout, “You lie, boy!” when he shouted “You lie!” during Obama’s speech to a joint session of Congress; and the mainstream media lying about civil rights hero John Lewis being called the N-word 15 times at an anti-ObamaCare protest, with no one ever being able to produce a videotape, despite a $100,000 reward.

Roundup

Yeah, I think this pretty much sums it up for us accounting / finance types:

Thanks, Comics.com

The Real Reason For Lefty Malaise – great explanation by Rich Karlgaard of Forbes about why Leftist ideas look swell in college classrooms but fail in the real world.

Pandering to Hispanics — L.A./Chicago Boycott Arizona… Unless There’s Money to be Made on red light cameras.  You can always tell how deep principles run when people hold them tightly — provided it costs them absolutely nothing.

Supreme Court: Public schools can deny funding to Christian student groups that bar gays — a horrible decision that only passed when they tweaked it to say that groups can’t exclude anyone.  But what will they do if hundreds of Christians join the Muslim group and change its leaders and by-laws to say that Jesus is the only way and Mohammad was a false prophet?  Make up your own examples!

More inconsistencies — We’re Here, We’re Queer and We’re in Abject Denial — gay groups support Palestine, even though the Palestinians would kill them all if they had a parade there while Israel would not.

Israel. The only place in the Middle East where one can be gay in public, without fear of being jailed, tortured or killed. The useful idiots aligning with Palestine don’t even realize that Hamas, a terrorist organization intent on “wiping Israel off the map,” is also oppressing some of its own people, particularly women and homosexuals. But, see, this doesn’t matter to them. Hamas is anti-Israel and anti-America. This is all that matters. Because George Bush. And evil capitalist America. They are willing to turn a blind eye to true oppression and homophobia so rampant that it results in bloodshed and death, as long as it fits with their preferred global agenda.

Hillary: Let the babies starve until we fund abortions – they love expanding abortions so much that they’ll hold food and medicine for babies as a result.  You can really feel the love, eh?

Besides, Hillary’s statement is nothing short of idiotic.  Maternal health does not depend on abortion.  In fact, abortion is a rather moot point when it comes to the stage of worrying about the health of mothers of newborn infants, isn’t it?

Darwin Meets Orwell – call this one, “Thanks for the concession speech, Mr. Naturalist!”  We’ve said for some time that naturalism can’t ground morality and this “expert” fully concedes the point.  His logic and conclusions are muddy, but the net of it is great to hear.  Yes, yes, we agree!  If your worldview is true then people can’t be held accountable!

Glenn’s last piece on his Catholic series, Catholic Iconography and the “Saints.” Nice summary.  I know many Catholics who, based on what they profess to believe, would be in the “true Christian” category.  They either weren’t taught or don’t believe the false doctrines from Rome and they do believe the essentials.  But that doesn’t mean I’d point people there.  The Reformation happened for many good reasons.

. . . These are the heavy burdens of legalism placed upon the members of the Roman Catholic Church, which result in the Roman Catholic Church being a cultic organization, in which the majority of its members are not true Christians (as testimony after testimony of ex-members attest).

How do we then witness to Catholics? The best way is to show them that salvation is a one-time thing and that it is not as a result of works. Point them to Christ, and not to Mary, for salvation. And that everything their leaders say should be passed through the grid of Scripture.

As noted on my Facebook page, my backup dog chewed through the mesh and inside of my suitcase to get to some candy stored in the front compartment.  She ate the Mikes AND the Ikes.  This is a re-enactment; she ran away when I was coming down the hall the first time.  She has lost a lot of teeth but still managed to chew through the fabric.

IMG_0028

Digg This

Roundup

The Disclose Act passed the house – it will address corporate contributions but coincidentally enough it exempts unions.  Go figure.

Pray for Joni Eareckson Tada, who has cancer.  She is an amazing woman.  I read her biography as a teen (I think I was home sick or something and my Mom suggested it . . . usually I would have been reading something like Helter Skelter).  I wasn’t a believer then but it still made an impression on me.

10-Year-Old Grand Marshal at Gay Rights Parade Sparks Controversy Across U.S. – something about millstones comes to mind for whoever is subjecting kids to that.

I like Right Klick’s take on objective journalism:

Should they try to be “fair and balanced?” Surely. Should they present multiple viewpoints? Of course. Should they exclude their own opinions? I don’t think so.

Readers should consider the writer’s point-of-view when assessing the validity of the writing. But they can’t do that if the writer’s interpretation of the story is hidden behind a façade. So political writers should plainly state their own opinions.

Moreover, I think political writers should be prepared to provide full disclosure. Who do they plan to vote for in the next election? To which politicians have they contributed?All conflicts of interest and relevant financial relationships should be clearly identified. Follow Mika Brzezinski’s example.

Open bias is better than fake neutrality.  But that would require honesty.

The latest on the Ergun Caner situation, for those of you following it – Looks like Liberty University was moving the right direction but fell far short of being as transparent as they should be, and Caner still isn’t fully ‘fessing up.  Shame on them.  Muslims will rightly mock this for decades when Christians try to witness to them.

The 2nd Amendment still matters: In UK, Grandmother jailed for five years for owning family heirloom handgun

Glenn is on a roll: Mary, “Mother of the Church,” Is Not the Mary of the Bible – read it for an analysis of some serious errors regarding Mary

Obama won’t close Gitmo in first term – That must be a typo.  When he campaigned he said he would close that first thing.

Digg This

Roundup

From the “Good, I’m not the only one!” category, Alyssa puts spinach in her shakes as well.  They really don’t impact the taste much and it makes the shakes more nutritious.  I could never eat cooked spinach. 

One of my first posts was about my Veggie Boy shakes.  We just replaced our vendor by splurging on a Vita Mix and I’m glad we did.  The old one had a 2 HP motor as well but didn’t nearly blend as well as this one.  Oh, and the old one was “arcing,” which is apparently a bad electrical thingy.  I had noticed the blue sparks when the lights were low but just ignored them for a while.  Having lots of fun with the new blender. 

Adult stem cells used to restore sight to patients blinded by chemical burns – now that is great news.  And they didn’t have to destroy human beings to find the cure. 

Extra creepy: Planned Parenthood to offer "insemination services," marketing lesbians – they prefer to kill the ones conceived naturally then sell the ones conceived artificially.  Because every kid wants a sperm donor Dad and Lesbian Moms. 

Female condoms with teeth – yikes.  You read that right.  Hope it works to punish rapists and/or reduce rapes.  It definitely has potential for misuse, but given the rate of rapes in some countries I can see why some would find it appealing.

Glenn on The Catholic Eucharist: Unbiblical and Idolatry

Good analysis of the Islamic event in Dearborn, Michigan, USA.  This should be front page news.  It is “creeping Sharia” law, where Muslims get more and more aggressive with their demands and restrictions on the religious freedoms of others.  

Again the value of video footage simply cannot be understated. On Sunday evening the weekend of their arrest, after being released on bail, David Wood and Paul Rezkallah returned to the Arab Festival in Dearborn, MI, to conduct something of an experiment (along with a friend, Antonio Santana). Instead of going inside the festival, they stood outside of it and distributed pamphlets of the Gospel of John in Arabic and English. The video of the experience is incredible.

For three individuals standing on a public street handing out religious pamphlets in an American city, the Dearborn Police Department responded in under five minutes with a total of eight uniformed officers and arrested them. This is the assault on the rights and freedoms of Americans that is taking place in Dearborn, Michigan. Every year for three days in June, pursuant to a decision by U.S. District Court Judge Paul Borman, the protections of the First Amendment are suspended within the Arab International Festival and its “outer perimeter” which, as we can tell from David’s experience here, apparently constitutes a five-block “buffer zone.” So anywhere within that five-block perimeter and the festival itself, the rights and freedoms of Americans is curtailed.

 

Digg This

Mega Roundup

AP Bias: Name That Party Blasts Repubs, Leaves Dems Unnamed in Stories – same author identifies party affiliation for one side but not the other.  This is very common.

Obama flip-flops on health care mandates – now it IS a tax – When he adamantly said the requirement to buy insurance wasn’t a tax, what he really meant was that it was a tax.  Clear?  And you can totally trust everything else they promised about the bill none of them read.

Glenn on Unbiblical Catholic Sin, Purgatory and Indulgences – this is an important issue.  While I know many Catholics who don’t hold to these doctrines or are unaware of them, Catholic catechisms still teach un-biblical concepts of purgatory and indulgences.  For example:

Catechism, Para 1471: …“‘An indulgence is a remission before God of the temporal punishment due to sins whose guilt has already been forgiven, which the faithful Christian who is duly disposed gains under certain prescribed conditions through the action of the Church which, as the minister of redemption, dispenses and applies with authority the treasury of the satisfactions of Christ and the saints.’” ‘An indulgence is partial or plenary according as it removes either part or all of the temporal punishment due to sin.’ The faithful can gain indulgences for themselves or apply them to the dead.”

As Glenn notes:

Scripture tells us our sins are forgiven in Christ and that He paid the penalty for that sin. Since Christ was purged for our sin, there is no need of purgatory, and if there is no need for purgatory, then there is even less need for indulgences to pay for lessened time in purgatory.

The Wasp Evolution Forgot – interesting take on a wasp and its associated tree that both forgot to evolve for 34 million years or so.  It reminds me of an aquarium that had to change a sign about how some species had evolved over the years, until they found a specimen that was really old (200,000 years, I think).  “Oops, what we really meant to say was that it must have perfected itself long ago.”  Such is the way of tautologies.

Democrats Kill Free Checking Accounts – More counterproductive big government actions.  Now those of us who obey the rules get to pay the fees for those who overdraft their accounts.  Swell.  One more reason to join a Credit Union.  Either the Democrats didn’t see that consequence coming or they didn’t care.  Both are bad.

Christians Taken Away in Handcuffs, Cameras Confiscated, While Muslims Chant "Allahu Akhbar!" on US Soil – Amazing.  This isn’t the first time the 1st Amendment rights of Christians have been trampled at these public Islamic events.  More details here.

I tweeted from my phone late last night that David Wood, Nabeel Qureshi (Acts 17 Apologetics Ministry) and two other Christians were arrested and taken away in handcuffs by the Dearborn, MI police. . . . David and Nabeel have reported on their experience here, having been released after spending the night in the Dearborn jail (they will never deal with the stories of the persecution of the early church in the same way again, I assure you). I do hope proper legal representation will lead to a meaningful civil action that will re-establish the rule of law (not Sharia) in Dearborn. As long as their cameras are not tampered with or destroyed, that should be the result, if justice prevails.

But I ask my readers to consider well what would have happened had the situation been reversed. What if Muslims were dragged away in handcuffs to the jeering chants of "Hallelujah!"? What kind of response would have come from such an event? Would not CNN and all the rest be on the spot? How much violence would you expect to see? One wonders.

This should be front page news in every paper and the lead story on CNN and the like.  Don’t hold your breath.

Please watch this video from 2009.

The FCC has no good reason to regulate the Internet.  As Red State summarizes from this video, here are three good reasons they should leave it alone:

  1. There’s no actual need for them to regulate it.
  2. The FCC will just muck it up anyway.
  3. They FCC is mostly doing this to continue justifying their existence and expansion.

Unlike many other industries, the Internet has absolutely exploded and thrived without government control.  Does anyone really believe that once you give government power that they won’t abuse it?

Video by Ray Comfort — good example of what the average person believes and what the Bible teaches and how to navigate the conversation. 

 

Digg This

Roundup

Friendly reminder: Everyone will spend eternity somewhere.

Do gun-free zones prevent multiple-victim public shootings? – No!  This common sense, people.  You just need to stop and think like a bad guy for about 10 seconds.  Just because people are criminals doesn’t mean they don’t process things through a risk / reward filter. 

“Contrary to public perception, Western Europe, most of whose countries have much tougher gun laws than the United States, has experienced many of the worst multiple-victim public shootings. Particularly telling, all the multiple-victim public shootings in Western Europe have occurred in places where civilians are not permitted to carry guns. The same is true in the United States: All the public shootings in which more than three people have been killed have occurred in places where civilians may not legally bring guns.”

The article has a list of MVPSs in Europe. They all occur in gun-free zones, where guns are prohibited by law.

When a government bans guns, the only people who have guns are criminals. And they know that there is no one to stop them when they open fire. That is why violent crime more than doubled in the 4 year period after the UK banned handguns.

Free audio Bibles – you can download the New Testament from the Faith Comes by Hearing site or Podcast it via iTunes. 

Thorough yet concise overview of Pope stuff — “several examples of how many popes acquired their office, the behavior of popes, and the unbiblical teachings of popes . . . the Catholic doctrine of the infallibility of the Pope . . . questions to ask about the papacy”

How to find a church – Christians need to be in church.  There are remarkably few valid excuses not to do so.  If you can’t find a good church, then find the one that is the least bad and try to improve it.

Study says kids of Lesbians are “healthy” and have “fewer behavior problems” – Well, gee, if a study says it, then it must be true and we should make that the new societal ideal.  Or perhaps there are some other things you should know about the study . . .

Abortion activist complains, "There aren’t enough of us" – of course, the sad and morbidly ironic reply is, “Maybe if you hadn’t pushed for all those abortions . . .”

The sound of ice cream trucks went from being joy-inducing to really annoying 37 years ago.  This would make them more interesting. 

 

Digg This

Guest post: A Catholic says, “Thank God for the Protestants and Evangelicals.”

While I always contend that the Reformation happened for good reasons and they are still valid, I thoroughly enjoy LCB’s diplomatic and well-thought out comments. Therefore, I’m publishing this guest post of his. Dive in!

—–

It’s been a rough few weeks to be Catholic. Really rough. “I wonder what’s going on with the Eastern Orthodox these days” type of rough. For many devout American Catholics (and I don’t mean the Nancy Pelosi type of devout) it’s been brutal. Worse than the “Long Lent” of 2002 (when the Boston Globe set off the scandal here in the States, as the period is often called in Catholic-shorthand). In this Easter season, for the first time in my life, I am thanking God for the Protestants and Evangelicals in general. Not just particular Protestants and Evangelicals (who I have been thankful for in the past), but the entire groups. I know a number of other Catholics who are feeling the same.

Central to the agony of the last few weeks has been a series of unrelenting and baseless attacks upon Pope Ratzinger. The media, unable to connect the man to wrongdoing, has instead adopted a policy of radical slander, ad hominem attacks, innuendo, and even outright lies. Run a false headline on the front page one day, print a small retraction of the entire story the next day on page Z-99, in 6 point font. Run a quote from a plantiff’s lawyer as if it were unbiased, only mention 30 paragraphs later (or not at all) that the man has made millions on sexual abuse lawsuits, and is currently trying to permit the Vatican to be sued in US court. I could go on. And on. And on.

The worst part has not been the Catholic Church’s liberal branch (AKA “The 5th Column”) who have gleefully joined in on the assaults. We’ve been living with them being the main quoted Catholic “balance” in AP and NYTs articles for two generations now. The worst part is that the media has been so brazen in attacking Catholicism that Catholics who are trying to defend against the attacks can’t manage to get any coverage at all. Bishops and Cardinals speak out to correct mistakes, no coverage. Bill Donahue screams something into a microphone (seriously, I like him, but he needs to learn about the “inside voice” rule), no coverage. Catholic intellectuals release detailed counter-points, no coverage or publication.

The pall of silence and non-coverage of authentic Catholic responses to the attacks has is so bad that the Catholic League has resorted to taking out a full page ad in the NYTs in order to present its rebuttal to the NYTs own coverage. Let that sink in for a minute. The only way Catholics can now reply to the NYTs hatchet jobs is by spending $50,000+ for a full page ad.

But there are voices that the MSM will listen to, and will still publish, and is even writing articles about. These voices are the Protestants and Evangelicals who are speaking out in defense of truth, who recognize that this assault is about much more than abuse that occured in Wisconsin in the 1950s. It’s about an attempt to silence a voice that speaks with moral authority. In the midst of this constant media assault the Protestants and Evangelicals are arriving on the field of battle (since, in the end, it remains we Christians vs. the World and its prince) even as our own 5th column is turning on us like never before. And the Protestants and Evangelicals are saying (quite loudly at times) “It is wrong to smear the good name of a good man who has a decades long reputation of trying to fight this problem. Smearing people with lies is wrong, and what you in the press are doing is wrong.”

It hasn’t just been in the media, either, where my fellow brethren in Christ have shown their dedication to Truth above all else. It’s been in a multitude of personal interactions and local sermons where good men and women have spoken out against what they see to be wrong. Where my voice is ignorned (“Oh you’re just a Catholic of course you’ll say that”) the voice of my brethren has been heard and they have given a mighty witness to Christ in the process.

Now UN Judges are calling for war crimes charges to be brought against Pope Ratzinger. Dawkins and Hitchens are funding a legal team to try and have a warrant issued against Pope Ratzinger before his visit to Britain… and they may likely find a sympathetic judge who will do just that. The charges? “Crimes against humanity” and a great many Anglicans are rising up in defense of the Pope (that’s a sentence one doesn’t type every day) on this matter.

So, for the first time in my life, I am saying “Thank God for the Protestants and Evangelicals.” Not just particular individuals, but for the groups entirely. The witness of standing up for what is right is a mighty witness for Christ– especially in this Easter season. It’s been a long road since October 1517. The attacks and persecutions against the whole of Christianity have consistantly brought the brethren closer together in Roman Times, under the Ottomans, during the French Revolution, in the Soviet Union, and in modern China. In times and places of great trial Christians with extreme doctrinal divides have united in defending Truth and presenting the Gospel of Christ and His saving love to the world in ways that have radically changed history.

It is my sincere prayer that, just as Christ’s suffering on His Most Holy Cross brought about mankind’s unity with one another (in the Body of Christ, the Church) and with God the Father in and through the power of the Holy Spirit, that so too may our current suffering bring about greater unity among we separated brethren and bring about the conversion and salvation of many souls throughout the world. Especially those that seek to attack Christ and the Church.

So many denominations!

I saw another blog make the claim that there are an inordinate number of Christian denominations. 

According to a quick Google search, there appears to be over 38,000 different Christian denominations.

Yes, there are many denominations. No, there aren’t 38,000. In fact, the previous urban legend claimed that there were 33,000, so I see that the figure has grown recently.

The definition of what makes a denomination can be fluid, so I’m not sure what the real figure is. But I think the solution is simple: Whoever claims a number should defend the number. Whoever claims 38,000 should have a list of them all, right? Otherwise, how do they know it is 38,000?  I’ve seen Catholics use the 33,000 figure to “prove” that they are the real church, and I find their logic to be transparently faulty.  Again, just ask them for the list of 33,000, including names of the denomination leaders.

You can also use the 80/20 principle to see if it even matters that there are a lot. Add up the figures for the top denominations (say, 30 or so) and see what percentage that is of the total estimated Christians. Then divide the remaining estimated number of Christians by 37,970 and see how many people per denomination you get. I think the number will be pretty small, thus proving that even if there were 38,000 then the members per denomination would be insignificant.

Of course, I think that estimates of the number of Christians are as inflated as the 38,000 figure — especially in the U.S. Lots of people check the “Christian” box but are anything but in terms of beliefs.

I think the denominational differences are unfortunate, but sometimes overblown. Yes, some falsely consider themselves the “one true church,” but many do not. They just recognize that they have different beliefs on non-essential issues (e.g., predestination, forms of baptism, forms of communion, etc.). I attend a Methodist church but would never claim it is the one true church. If I meet Presbyterians or Lutherans I don’t try to convert them to Methodism.  So we aren’t quite as divergent as people think. 

And as Lone Wolf Archer noted:

The religious (and non-religious) world often misuses the term “denomination”. Denominations aren’t necessarily “different beliefs”, but they have have their own governing board or governing body that directs the various congregations. 

I used to do lunchtime Bible studies at Compaq and we’d have a great diversity of people by all measures, including denominations.  But you would have had a tough time guessing what denomination anyone was based on the discussions.  When we just read the biblical texts there was more agreement that you’d expect.

I enjoy serving in CareNet Pregnancy Center and Kairos Prison ministries as well, which both have Bible-believing Christians from many denominations who work together seamlessly to advance the kingdom.

The number of denominations doesn’t prove that Christianity isn’t true, any more than the divergent views of atheists proves that there is a God.  The “one true church” is made up of people who have authentically repented of their sins and put their faith in the real Jesus.

Guest post: Is science more infallible than the Pope?

From Neil: Some of the many terrific commenters here don’t have blogs of their own, so I welcome guest posts from time to time to get other views and generate discussion.    Welcome to a guest post by LCB.  Usual caveat — if I disagree with something in a guest post and care enough to write about it, I’ll do so in the comments section. 

———-

Those that don’t know I am a staunch Roman Catholic generally figure it out pretty quickly, between citing the Popes and Aquinas, to my extensive posts on the importance of liturgy no matter the denomination. I even have a Catholic bumper sticker. My Catholicism stands out.

In the last few days Neil has had some great posts on Liberal Christianity, the mis-interpretation of Scripture, and proselytization. This is a topic that Neil and I have chatter about quite seriously in the comment sections. An excellent book on the topic is J. Gresham Machen’s “Christianity and Liberalism.” Almost a century old, it remains a seminal work. Its essential premise is this: Liberal Christians use the same words as Orthodox Christians, but they use them in fundamentally different ways and assign to them fundamentally different meanings. Neil has previously linked to an excellent podcast on this book (and I hope he inserts it here, I don’t have the link). [From Neil: Couldn't find the link.  I recall that it was from an Apologetics.com Podcast.]

In our conversations I have expressed (and I suspect that Neil agrees) that Roman Catholicism has had an epic internal struggle against liberal Christianity. Though we have strong disagreements on the topic of Roman Catholicism, this is something that almost all persons can agree upon. At one point we even had an anti-modernism/liberalism oath that people were required to take. This struggle is similar to the struggle that the oldline/mainline/deadline Protestant branches have had. It has played out on a worldwide stage, and the most formidable Catholic minds of the last century have been involved in our internal debate. This debate has raged across Protestantism too. From Schweitzer’s conversion and African journey to Bonhoffer’s final prayer on the floor of Flossenburg, the best of men have risked everything over this.

It’s also important that we consider the stakes of the battle with Liberal Christianity, no matter the denomination. Hundreds of millions of souls, billions of souls, are at stake. Western Civilization itself, and it’s ability to stand against Islam on theological and philosophical grounds without surrendering, is at stake. That’s kind of a big deal.

Yet, the battle is really a 3-way battle. Orthodox Christianity vs. Liberal Christianity allied closely with Secular Liberalism.

We Orthodox Christians (broadly speaking, those that will assert that Jesus is Lord and that we depend on Him alone for salvation) make various claims of infallibility. All agree upon the infallibility of Scripture. We Catholics make some additional claims, but the best known is a claim that “The Pope is Infallible.” Those that have studied apologetics or Catholicism even a bit know that this is a limited claim. If the Pope says “Sure is a nice day” it doesn’t mean the day is nice. If he says “Cats are the best pets” we know he certainly is in grave error on that matter.

The classic definition is “Infallible on matters of faith and morals.” And even then, only when he is trying to be infallible does it count. The classic way that a Pope exercises this authority is when he speaks on behalf of all the world’s Bishops (he is “first among equals” of the Bishops, based on the principle that Peter was “First among equals” of the Apostles). To claim infallibility is a serious claim. When the Pope has clarified, on behalf of all the world’s Bishops and through the teaching authority of the Church, that abortion is always and everywhere wrong, he is saying “It is impossible for me to be wrong on this matter because this truth is revealed by God through the Apostles since the earliest days of the Church.” You may agree or disagree partially or fully, but all can certainly agree that to make such a claim of infallibility is a tremendously serious matter that should be evaluated with equal seriousness.

At this juncture one may think, “What is he leading up to? Why all this laying of groundwork to talk about science?” And those are excellent questions. I have laid this groundwork so as to make clear what the ally of Liberal Christianity– Secular Liberalism– is claiming. Liberal Christianity often uses the claims of its ally to bolster their own case.

They are claiming the infallibility of science. That science can not be in error and is a source of revealed truth.

Consider, if you will, the way a Catholic (like myself) would present an argument from authority on certain religious matters. “XYZ is true.” And you ask, “Why is that? How do you know” and I reply with firmness “Because the POPE says so.” It’s not a circular argument, I’m not proving what I assume. Rather, I’m simply assuming the Pope has the authority to make such claims. Arguments like this are a special type of “argument from authority” because I am claiming that this authority can never, under any circumstances be wrong. An argument from Scripture works the same way, especially among those that describe themselves as Bible Believing Christians. “XYZ is true” “Why is that” “Because SCRIPTURE says so.”

But, whereas Scripture is written, the Pope is a man. What is written in Scripture will stay written in Scripture and won’t be changing anytime ever. The Pope can speak anew. And once he clarifies what is in Sacred Tradition, it can’t be un-clarified.

Now consider how the Liberal Christian and the Secular Liberal attacks with a similar argument from authority. “XYZ is true” “Why is that?” “Because SCIENCE says so. There is a SCIENTIFIC CONSENSUS.”

That is an astounding claim. When the Catholic Church holds an ecumenical council (which, when it chooses to be infallible, is also infallible) it must at least take an actual vote of all the Bishops in attendance. And those Bishops (rather you agree or not) are at least claiming to have a special ability by virtue of their ordination as Bishops to teach on matters of faith and morals. I know of no scientist that claims holding a Ph.D provides a special grace endowed by God to avoid error when teaching.

Yet, taken as a collective, SCIENCE is invoked as if it is infallible. And even more astonishingly, a field that has nothing to do with faith and morals claims infallibility of matters of faith and morals. The Pope’s claim is at least understandable (in that it makes sense that a Pope might claim such authority in matters of faith and morals, but not in geography or math). But what claim does science have over faith and morals? How can a field unrelated to faith and morals possess expertise, infallible expertise, on those matters? It strains logic and reason past the breaking point.

Let’s be clear here. The Liberal Christians and Secular Liberals are claiming a greater level of infallibility than the Pope. Whereas the Pope may speak anew only on matters of faith and morals, Science is claiming the ability to speak anew on all matters of all sorts, unrestricted by expertise or competence in the area.

Even the Catholic claims of infallibility are tempered and restrained. They are restrained by Scripture (and can not be contrary to Scripture), they are restrained by Sacred Tradition, they are restrained by Ecumenical Councils, and they are restrained by the many Bishops. But the Liberal Christians and Secular Liberals are claiming absolutely unrestrained infallibility in the name of Science. Whereas the Catholic teachings are bound by previous teachings, the Liberal Christians and Secular Liberals are free to overturn any of their previous teachings at any time in favor of new teachings. How? Science.

Why is abortion acceptable? Science. Why can Scripture be ignored? Science. Why don’t miracles happen? Science says so. Even though data doesn’t exist, how do we know the globe is warming? Science. How is the globe warming and cooling at the same time? Science. How is contradictory evidence for the same thing always proof of the pre-determined conclusion? Science. Why is it wrong to proselytize? Science. Why is morality whatever we want it to be? Science.

When we consider this matter carefully, we even see who the targets of this attack are. The targets are anyone who makes truth claims that aren’t based on Holy Science. Orthodox Christianity? Unacceptable. Liberal Christianity where everything is just a metaphor and Holy Science is allowed to be the final source of all truth? Acceptable. Philosophy? Stupid and ignorant, unless it places Science first. Political conservativism that allows people to worship something other than science? Trash, ignorant people that ignore science. Secular Liberal politics? Scientifically acceptable, since science is placed first.

Consider some of the most common criticisms of Orthodox Christianity in general. “They are anti-Science.” And what was a common criticism against Bush? “He was anti-Science.” Catholicism- “They are against abortion, and thus against science. They even persecuted a scientist!” Those that make moral claims about homosexuality? “Science disagrees.” When a serious reply is pressed on these matters what are some of the common replies? “You are just a flat earther” “You probably think the earth is the center of the solar system” “What next, demons cause sickness instead of germs?” Even in the face of a challenge to their premise, they simply return and reassert the premise louder and add more ridicule.

And if you continue to dare challenge Holy Science, you are promptly informed “Well, you aren’t a scientist” (often by a non-Scientist). Unless you are repeating the claims of scientists, you aren’t even allowed to have an opinion on a matter that Scientists have decided the truth on. Non-adherents are not permitted to question the truth, adherants are not permitted to question the truth. The truth is unchanging, until Scientists change it, and then the new truth remains unquestionable.

Notice the constant appeal– to Holy Science. And what is the insult– “You are ignorant of science!” Why science? because science is more infallible than the Pope.

The Immaculate (Mis)conception

I was recently corrected by a fellow blogger because I used the term “Immaculate Conception” in an erroneous way.  I always thought the term referred to Jesus’ conception, but it turns out that it refers to the false teaching that Mary was conceived without original sin.  My bad.

(As noted on the Sorry, but Mary can’t save you post, there is no biblical justification for Mary being sinless and plenty demonstrating that despite her unique role and great example she was a sinner in need of a Savior just like us.  If Mary “had” to be sinless, as many commenters claimed, then by that reasoning her parents had to have been sinless as well, and their parents, and so on.  And if she could have been sinless through some other means, then of course that could have applied to Jesus as well.  If you need more please read that thread.  I don’t want to replay that discussion here.)

But back to my mistake . . . there are a few takeaways from this experience.

Important life lesson: If you become sure that you are wrong about something then the best thing to do is quickly concede that point.  It is an effective strategy at work and at home.  Don’t let pride get in the way.  It just makes you look bad.

The person who corrected me was factual, polite and discreet, taking the time to gently correct me via email.  A comment on the blog would have been fine, but I appreciated his extra effort and friendly tone.  I let him know that I sincerely appreciated the correction.  I would have hated to continue using the term in error, so what he did was the loving, Christian thing.

Also, it is fun to point out to my critics that I’m not the rigid, dogmatic fundy they like to pretend I am.  You see, if you show me legitimate evidence that my views are wrong I will gladly change them.

It is just that I’ve exhaustively studied issues like abortion, oxymoronic “same sex marriage,” what the Bible teaches about human sexuality, the divinity of Jesus, the fact of Jesus’ resurrection, the exclusivity of Jesus, etc.  and am extremely confident that the facts support my views.  Is it possible, in a hyper-technical sense, that I could be wrong on any of those topics?  I suppose so, but the evidence just isn’t there to demonstrate that. 

But under no circumstance can they claim I’m not correctable.  I seriously doubt that they’ll be correctable on their false view that I’m not.  Abandoning life in Stereotype Land is just too hard for some people

Speaking of immaculate things, I do have faith in the Immaculate Reception and the Immaculate Interception.  Go Steelers!