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This Month's Scripture Verse:

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.
2 Timothy 3:1-5


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Comments Which Conservatives Block From Their Blogs For October 15, 2014

Oct 8

To R. Scott Clark and his blogpost consisting of a quote describing the Left as big government treating people as parts of a machine. This appeared in Heidelblog.

If you would first realize that the Left is not a monolith, that many on the Left are for expanded democracy and thus distributed power, then perhaps you would not bear false witness against it. 

Then if you would realize that without that expanded democracy, you have elite-centered rule. And if you realized that many on the Right stand with the founding fathers in being opposed to democracy, that it is those on the Right who are in favor of experts being in control. But you don't notice that because the only time you believe it is bad for experts to be in charge is when they are from the public sector. However, it is ok for many on the Right to be nonchalant about experts from the private sector being in charge--especially corporate and financial sector experts.

And it is this double standard that favors elites from the private sector that seems to blind you from the fact that power can be consolidated in the private sector as well as the public sector. And this consolidation of power in the private sector is no less a centralization of power than that of the stereotype pejorative of the Left which you so freely employ.

Would it be worth your while to do some reading of the diverse views from the Left to see that it is not a monolith you claim it to be so that you don't bear false witness? And if you did read diverse views from the Left, you might even realize that Obama and the Democrats are closer Conservatives and Republicans than they are to the Left. To document the distinction, I was at a protest that was really a disguised rally for the Democratic Party. Some leftist groups also attended. I eventually joined a Socialist group from Ohio University that was attending. And as we were entering the main assembly area, we were chanting: Obama's not a socialist, we are we are. People on the Left do not recognize Obama and the Democrats as belonging in the same group. But how would you know that unless you read outside of your box?


Oct 13

To Lindsay Parks and her comments defending the prohibition of same-sex marriage. One of the reasons for her stand is that she claimed that the Bible called homosexuality, 'abuse.' Her first comments indicating that aim are found in her response to James Bradshaw . This appeared in Denny Burk's blog

Please tell me the specific greek word used in both passages that speaks of abuse. The only word I see that could is malaxoi and that word involves connotations of abuse only when it refers to catamites. The word doesn't always refer to that though. That word is not used in Romans 1. Rather, Romans 1 describes homosexuality as being against nature and indecent, but there is no mention of abuse. The added concept of something being against nature as abuse is confusing for as in I Cor 6, if malaxoi refers to catamites, there is abuse against a person, calling unnatural acts abuse simply because they are unnatural means that you are using the word differently. So if you see a greek word there that means abuse, please type it in.

In addition, your argument is based on the suggestion that Paul wrote in the King James version. His letters come to us in the Greek and if you want to suggest that he means abuse here, then you must be referring to catamites who were victims of abuse not because of homosexuality but because age. They were boys having sex with men. But, again, the greek word malaxoi does not always refer to catamites. As with many English words, Greek words can have multiple meanings.

Next, if you want to say that homosexuality is the ultimate sin of the unbelieving Gentile, you are saying that it is worse than murder. And there is nothing in the Scriptures that support that. In fact, note how Paul describes the unbelieving Gentile in Romans 1 and yet he states that the unbelieving Gentile is not worse than the believing Jew --see Romans 3:9. 

This not being worse than is the basis for Romans 2:1 that says we are not to judge others. That does not mean that we are not to say something is sinful, what it does mean is that we are not to condemn others for their sins because we stand worthy of condemnation ourselves. Thus, we can't single out the homosexual for special condemnation.

As for I Cor 5, again, we are talking about a different concept. Paul disciplines, judges if you will, someone for sexual sin. But note the Church consequences for that sin. It is to separate the person from the Church for the purposes of facilitating repentance. There is neither criminal nor physical punishment and the punishment is for Church members, not for those in society for Paul states that in I Cor 5.

As for Sodom and Gomorra,  note what Ezekiel 16:49ff says:

49 “‘Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy. 50 They were haughty and did detestable things before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen

Note that other sins preceded the abominations practiced by those from Sodom and that others who followed them in time were even more sinful than the residents of Sodom.

There is simply no scriptural justification for singling out gays for marginalization in any society that exists after the beginning of the NT. 


Oct 14

To Jordan Bailor and his blogpost warning those who work on Wall Street. This appeared in the Acton blog.

The problem with the article cited here along with this post is that it seems to target the abuse of the system rather than the system. Yes, Wall Street does not completely live according to the Free Market and employees of some financial sector firms are really acting as self-employed contractors who could care less about anything outside of them. 

Of course we should note how some of Wall Street does live by the free market and thus it lobbies Congress so that some of its financial products go unregulated. In addition, basic values and catalysts of the Free Market such as maximizing profit, self-interest is the only interest, and competition tend to act as siren calls for some to leave the free market. But we should also note that some corporate policies that hurt people, such as outsourcing jobs to other countries, work by free market principles.

The real problem is not in the failure to follow the Free Market system or in the corruption of its participants. The real problem is the system itself and the lie around the system that says what you make from  the intelligent/lucky  buying and trading of stock shares is earned income. In fact, this earned income is treasured more by society than the earned income that comes from working. And so the question becomes whether following the Free Market will eventually destroy itself because of its values and how it destroys the lives of people.

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