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Showing posts from September 14, 2003
And I do not think the evangelical denominations are just interest groups for the GOP. Rather, I feel that the mainlines are interest groups for whatever social cause is in fashion. Without the Gospel, they are just civil groups that make religious noises every now and then. Christians in posession of the true Gospel can stand outside the political fray and make valuable contributions to both parties. Yet as long as one party (the Democratic Party) remains committed to defending "abortion rights," they will not gain the allegiance of Christians who might generally agree with other policies.
I was reading about mainline church opposition to U.S. invasion of Iraq. My instructor was lamenting (or observing, to allow a claim of objectivity) the lack of impact those leaders' opinions had on Bush's policy. The list of denominations was less than impressive. ELCA, PCUSA, United Methodist? C'mon. Most real Christians are either considering leaving these denominations, or have already done so. If Christians perceive that the Gospel itself has been forsaken, why would leaders' opinions on "just war" theory mean anything? You can't assume that the more "conservative" elements are all Southern Baptists and independent evangelicals, either. Religion scholars have failed to account for the creation of new "mainline" denominations to replace the others, where doctrine and practice has remained strong and traditional, better explaining the huge groundswell of support for the war policies of our President. This is a much better explanation
So, today is the day for talking about whether Christians can lose their salvation. Can we? Depends on what a "Christian" is. Someone who walks, talks, and even acts like a Christian might not really be one. (1 John 2:18-19) "False sons in her pale," indeed. But we are assured over and over in Scripture that we will not fall away on account of God failing us. (John 6:37-40, Ephesians 1:13-14, John 10:27-30) Nor can we commit any sin so great that we cannot be forgiven if we truly repent (1 John 1:8-9). The real theme of Romans 8-9 is not election, but rather assurance. The same could be said for the first two chapters of Ephesians. How did we get where we are, and where are we going? Will God lead us out of the slavery of sin to perish in the desert of our own efforts? Surely not! The same grace that called us out of sin and death will sustain us. If we were dead in our transgressions and sins (Ephesians 2:1) and we were made alive with Christ (Eph. 2:5) surely He i
Crumpets. Tea and crumpets. I can't think of anything to say. It has been my experience that no one ever reads 2 Peter. That is, unless they're quoting something about losing your salvation, or other such foolishness. I'll do what can only be described as a column on this. Anyway, I've read Paul's letters a billion times, but has anyone ever quoted from the book of Amos? I've had people ask me if that book is in the Apocrypha. No, it's in the Old Testament, and it's not disputed. Don't ask me about Joel, either. You should know this stuff.
Today, class was supremely interesting. It's my Congress and Legislative Policy course. My instructor said that parties are getting stronger, and becoming more ideologically pure (less overlap). Let's hope so.
Much was made of the fact that George W. Bush did not meet with a single bishop (including his own) from the United Methodist Church before deciding to move against Iraq. On the other hand, I saw his bishop on a program discussing religion and salvation. If one is a Christian, or even knows a lot about it, one expects to hear a certain answer to the question, "How must I be saved?" Regardless of denomination, the answer, with little variation always is: "Repent and believe in the name of Jesus, God's only Son, our Lord." Never changes. Never should. Well, this guy said some ridiculously pluralistic drivel about how all religions are the same. Yours truly had to conclude that perhaps this man was no disciple of Jesus at all. I myself am not the Judge, but were I the President, I'd ignore this man's "religious opposition" to my policy in the same manner.
A little over a year ago, I unequivocally stated that Kurt Warner should be the starting quarterback for the St. Louis Rams. Today, I am changing my decision. It pains me to write this; I love Kurt Warner. He's my favorite football player. In case you're wondering, yes, it is because he's a Christian. Warner plays for my hometown team, and he's my brother in Christ. (Aside from the fact that he's also really good) Yet, Marc Bulger is better. I won't say that I'll have a Marc Bulger card or jersey. I won't follow his career when he leaves the Rams. But he deserves to start for my team. I will never have the intense loyalty to Bulger as I do to Warner, and Marc will have to understand that is true for many St. Louis fans. If they trade Warner, there's going to be an uproar. But what else will you do? 47 million dollars was paid to Warner after the Super Bowl victory. You can't have a backup with that much money! A seven-year contract. This is only