Archive for Religion

Haiti’s Deal With the Devil

Posted in Humanity, Religion, Top Posts with tags , , , , , , on January 14, 2010 by raingeg

It seems that every time a large disaster happens there is always going to be someone that blames it on sin. Pat Robertson, yesterday, did just that. I know that he said it was because of a deal with the devil, but in essence that would be a sin. I find it hard, given what the Bible says, to agree with Robertson’s assessment of the situation. The truth of the matter is that it goes far beyond any deal with the devil that Haiti did or didn’t make, it goes back to Adams sin.

Scott Richards of Scott Richards Live put it this way.

So when we are hurting or find ourselves hurting others, it goes back to the fall. When we find ourselves struggling with a sense of emptiness and frustration in the deepest part of our souls, it goes back to the fall. When we at once see the remaining traces of the beauty of creation, and the mind-blowing destruction that same creation can deliver, it goes back to the fall. And so, in a sense, Pat Robertson was right. When Adam and Eve listened to the voice of the serpent, the result was a cursed creation. But that curse isn’t restricted to Haiti, or the coasts of Indonesia and India when the tsunami disaster hit. It effects all of us. And every time we sin, we ratify that same decision that rendered the once “very good” creation into what we live in today. But the good news is, in spite of what we have done, God continues to love us.

Jesus, in the book of Luke, seems to refute Robertson’s claim.

1 There were present at that season some who told Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2 And Jesus answered and said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things? 3 I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish. 4 Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them, do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwelt in Jerusalem? 5 I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.” Luke 13:1-9

What message should we get from these words? Turn to Christ, its no matter whether or not you’ve made a pact with the devil. Turn to Christ and you will be set free. You will not be set free from the trials of this world, be it an earthquake or the common cold, that is not the point, we still live in a fallen world.

In the book of Hebrews it says.

23 Therefore it was necessary that the copies of the things in the heavens should be purified with these, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. 24 For Christ has not entered the holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us; 25 not that He should offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood of another— 26 He then would have had to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now, once at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. 27 And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, 28 so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.

That means that you need Christ. So was Pat Robertson right when he said that the people of Haiti need to turn to God? Yes, but lets not limit it to the people of Haiti. We are all sinners and we all need God. Was he right to say that the people of Haiti are more deserving of the destruction because of their deal with the devil? No, as Christ said “unless you repent you will all likewise perish.” We are all sinners and we are all deserving of death, that is why we need Christ.

UK Priest Tells Church to Shoplift

Posted in Economy, Politics, Religion, Top Posts with tags , , , , , , , on December 24, 2009 by raingeg

In the U.K. a priest has said that its ok to shoplift, but only if you steal from a big business. This is all done as a way for people to stay away from violent or degrading actions like mugging or prostitution. Where on earth do these people come from?

Father Tim Jones is the man behind the new call to shoplift. So if prostitution and mugging were compared to heroin, shoplifting from big businesses would be the methadone that is supposed to “solve” that problem.

What does this stem from? The idea that the Christmas season has become too commercialized and everyone just feels the need to spend, spend, spend and in hard times some people just can’t.

Jones does do something good here, he’s using this issue to call attention to problems with the welfare system in the Britain, though, sadly he seems to be advocating more welfare. “I offer the advice with a heavy heart and wish society would recognize that bureaucratic ineptitude and systematic delay has created an invitation and incentive to crime for people struggling to cope.” Unfortunately that doesn’t really seem like a plea for less government involvement, instead the exact opposite. That is still not an excuse to steal. Why are people so eager to look for excuses to sin?

Jones says that it doesn’t break the eighth commandment because “God’s love for the poor outweighs his love for the rich.” What a ridiculous claim. First, I think God has enough love to go around. Second, there is no biblical proof that God has more or less “love” for the rich and the poor. The rich are held to a higher standard than the poor, that is true, but that is different than love, I don’t think God has a love-O-meter and only has a finite amount of it, the implication puts an everlasting God into a finite world and that cannot be done. Thirdly, the poor cannot simply blame the rich anytime they want to sin.

Can we admit already that the welfare state cripples the incentive for the individual, and apparently now some portions of the church, to do anything to help the poor. Jones says “Let my words not be misrepresented as a simplistic call for people to shoplift. The observation that shoplifting is the best option that some people are left with is a grim indictment of who we are. Rather, this is a call for our society no longer to treat its most vulnerable people with indifference and contempt. Providing inadequate or clumsy social support is monumental, catastrophic folly.”

The main question that we must ask ourselves here is, why is there inadequate social support? Could it be that government never does a good job at providing social support? Could it be that as the government gets more and more evolved in the peoples lives that the people become less and less apt to give of themselves? The U.K. is arguably further left than the United States, but American leftists always looks with reverence at the European system and say “that’s what we need to do!” And look at what effect it has on the people of their country.

The more the government gets involved, the less the individual gets involved. When the government is taking all of the peoples money individuals don’t have the ability or the desire to do anything about problems that rid society, because they think the government has it under control.

I’ll leave you with this in closing. The church, no matter what denomination or location, cannot keep letting society guide it. We need to adhere to sound biblical principals and not ask ourselves if society approves. Jones should have been telling the well off of his congregation to start helping the poor, instead of giving the poor permission to sin.

The Cross Debate

Posted in Politics, Religion with tags , , , , on October 8, 2009 by raingeg

Story from the AP on the Mojave National Preserve cross debate. Here’s what Scalia had to say. Commentary on this subject coming in the near future.

As the Supreme Court weighed a dispute over a religious symbol on public land Wednesday, Justice Antonin Scalia was having difficulty understanding how some people might feel excluded by a cross that was put up as a memorial to soldiers killed in World War I.

“It’s erected as a war memorial. I assume it is erected in honor of all of the war dead,” Scalia said of the cross that the Veterans of Foreign Wars built 75 years ago atop an outcropping in the Mojave National Preserve. “What would you have them erect?…Some conglomerate of a cross, a Star of David, and you know, a Muslim half moon and star?”

Peter Eliasberg, the American Civil Liberties Union lawyer arguing the case, explained that the cross is the predominant symbol of Christianity and commonly used at Christian grave sites, not that the devoutly Catholic Scalia needed to be told that.

“I have been in Jewish cemeteries,” Eliasberg continued. “There is never a cross on a tombstone of a Jew.”

There was mild laughter in the packed courtroom, but not from Scalia.

“I don’t think you can leap from that to the conclusion that the only war dead that that cross honors are the Christian war dead. I think that’s an outrageous conclusion,” Scalia said, clearly irritated by the exchange.

Religion Vs. Religiosity

Posted in Religion with tags , , , on July 16, 2008 by raingeg

When it comes to words, the word “religion” is a very divisive one, especially when it comes to Christianity and much of its effort to communicate why “religion” is not necessarily a good thing. So when I was thinking about where the barrier is I figured out that Christians are somewhat at fault when it comes to spelling out what exactly their views on religion are.

There are many way’s that people misuse the word within Christianity. I will now give the classic example and then proceed to use it that way in the following paragraph. The best example is, religion won’t save you.

Within Christianity there are people, myself included, that have come to the conclusion that religion will do nothing to get you anywhere, it will not make God love you anymore than He already does, it will not get you a better seat in heaven, and will not up the odds of you getting into heaven. But in making that statement I have to find a better word to replace “religion”. Because if I talk to another Christian they automatically understand what I mean, whereas if I am not talking to a Christian it will go straight over their head.

Religion – people’s beliefs and opinions concerning the existence, nature, and worship of a deity or deities, and divine involvement in the universe and human life.

After reading that I have to say that my religion is Christianity. I believe in God, the Trinity, and everything that goes along with the Religion of Christianity. And to a degree, to be completely straight forward, within Christianity there are some slight steps that you have take, however small they are, even if it is just believing, that is a step and you have to take it, so that qualifies it as a religion. Christianity has beliefs and opinions on all of the things listed in the above definition, so that too qualifies it as a religion. So now that we have established that Christianity is a religion, why has it caused so much division among Christians and generally people outside of Christianity?

That comes down to how we as Christians use the word. For the most part the word religion is only there to allow one to state, in a broad way, what particular faith one follows without going into great detail about a particular denomination. For example one might say there religion is Judaism, Islam, Hinduism or Christianity. That way they do not have to say I am an Orthodox Jew or a Baptist Christian. It is just a simple way to show where you stand.

I’ve heard many words that accurately replace “religion” in this debate, those being, words like works and acts. But those are still words that are to broad and often heard totally different from the Christian ear than they are in the secular or non-Christian ear. I’ve decided on Religiosity.

Religiosity – excessively or sentimentally religious: excessively, sentimentally, or affectedly pious.

To put it loosely, going through the motions of the ocean. Just kind of doing what you need to do and not paying attention to what you are really doing. Trying to attain something while not moving forward at all. Just blindly making your way through life and being there. If you were to take this person to an extreme they would be classified as your classic hypocrite. This is the person that thinks because they do a certain thing that it will matter to God. This is the person that is so pious that they are not looking out for their religion or the people around them,, they are looking out for themselves. And that’s what it comes down to, they are serving themselves and no one else. The no body but me mentality is the primary reason that religiosity is a problem. They want glory and do not want to give any of the glory to God. That might make someone a religionist.

Religionist- excessive religious enthusiasm: excessive or affected religious enthusiasm.

First off God loves you, second your works should be something that is a result of your faith not a means to obtain faith, and third there are many people that do great things and accomplish great things in this world, some in Gods name and others not, and frankly some of those people that work in Gods name are not any different inside than the people that don‘t. It matters not what you do it matters how and why you do what you do and who you do what you do for. And in all actuality religion is nothing but a way for you to identify where you belong. Don’t let religiosity get in the way of your faith.

All definitions provided by:
Encarta ® World English Dictionary © & (P) 1998-2004 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Point Panic

Posted in Life with tags , , , on July 13, 2008 by raingeg

So right about now I am in California. Check out this song! This is quite possibly the most boring video on Youtube.com, that’s alright the tunes make up for it. This is The Safari’s with “Point Panic”.

I had the song “Point Panic” here but youtube deleted it.

And if you want, check out The Joel Gaines show this afternoon. Go blogtalkradio.com or thejoelgainesshow.com for more info. I’m going to run the show from California so it should be interesting.

And don’t think that just cause I’m out of town I’m not posting. I’ve got a new post coming up this week about Religion and how its incorrectly used within Christianity. Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Poison Water

Posted in Politics, Religion with tags , , , , on May 2, 2008 by raingeg

There is a little metaphor that’s used a lot, I am not particularly fond of it, but it makes sense. If I have a cup of water and someone puts a drop of poison in it, is that good water anymore? Why not, it only has a drop in it? Lets take it a step further, lets just assume that my cup of water is the best and purest water, and then someone puts a drop of poison in it, is it the best and purest water anymore? No its not, it has poison in it and it is not pure or good to drink. I say this because the people in the media that automatically defended Reverend Wright are put into a strange position. They didn’t think Obama would condemn his pastor, so they stood up for Wright. I read articles and heard reports of people swooning over Wright. He was in the military and he is educated, both things that are admirable. But just like in the “poison in the cup” metaphor Wright’s message became defiled by his blatantly vile words.

When we start talking about these strange theological differences like the belief in a black Jesus and stupid lies of the like, we have to wonder if anything he say’s after that is the truth. Obviously Obama does not approve of him anymore, but this realization only comes after it proved detrimental to his campaign, a realization 20 years in the making. Does Wright’s ideology not just bring division into the church? I feel that I have to say this, the real Church that belongs to the Body of Christ does not have a black side and a white side, it has no side, it is the Church. Christ sees no race, Christ is loving and forgiving and he could care less what color a person’s skin is. If we really desire to be Christ like, we as humans should adopt that ideal. Wright obviously doesn’t believe in that ideal because he believes that African Americans are different from white people, outside of just having a different skin color. I don’t know his heart, but judging by what I can see and hear him say, I don’t like his ideas about what the Christian Church should look like.

I know this post is late as far as the news goes, but my computer broke and I just got things up and running again.