Wednesday, February 08, 2006

I Wish I Had Said That...

About seven years ago, I started posting online about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and defending the tenets and values of Biblical Christianity. At first, I began posting on various message boards; most of which were involved in discussing Christian oriented themes. Then, I found a few athiest/agnostic message boards and decided to meet the challenges they would throw at me regarding Christian faith.

In December of 2001, my husband gave me a very special Christmas gift. He gave me the opportunity to have a website. I was so excited about this! However, I wasn't sure what I wanted my website to be about. While I was trying to figure out what (and for Whom) my website would be about, my husband told me that he had to choose a domain name. He decided to name it Angels-Helper. You can read about the story behind choosing that name here. (Note: I searched but couldn't locate the post! I will include it when I do find it.)

Soon after, I asked him if we could add a message board. One reason for this was the fact that our local newspaper often rejected guest commentary articles that I had written. In my dealings with the editors there, I found out that the reason for the rejections were often due to my conservative ideology and Biblical stances on issues. The articles which I had submitted where in an attempt to counter the one-sided views of the newspaper's liberal commentators that dominated the editorial pages and letters section. The paper did print a few of my commentaries, but it always took several submissions to get them in print. Sometimes they would edit the titles or leave out one or two points made within the commentary, but most of the original work was left intact. This showed me that it wasn't my writing inabilities that made them reject my original submissions. It was more likely the ideological opinions expressed that they didn't approve of.

Fast forward to April of 2005. I discovered blogging! I was pleased that I had found a forum where I could have my say without the censorship that often occurs in the liberal newspapers. I had found my niche!

However, along with such a freedom comes a LOT of responsibility. Especially when I had chosen to be a spokesperson through sharing God's Word. It can be a daunting task!

I knew that being an imperfect servant of the Lord would mean that I would make some mistakes.

I knew that being honest about God's Word towards those who do not accept it would cause controversy.

I knew that there might be instances where denominational differences between Christians could cause arguments.

I knew that choosing to be a "Godblogger" (a title chosen by the Biola University GodBlog Conference organizers) would be a much more serious subject than, say, if I had chosen to discuss gardening.

I knew that discussing God, Jesus, Creation, and the Bible would carry along a burder of responsibility like no other.

I knew that discussing the Gospel of Christ meant sharing the bad news (which includes sharing the consequences for sin, the need for confession of sin and the need for repentance), as well as the Good News of Jesus Christ, (including His sacrificial death, burial, resurrection to life, and hope eternal for believers) would draw many different people and their opinions to this blog.

I knew that because different people would read what I write. They would then form their own opinions about it which would inevitably invite ideological discussions that might turn ugly.

I knew that comments might run the gamut between those that give praise for our Lord and Savior and His Word all the way to the other side of the spectrum which would include ridicule, disdain and accusations.

I knew that some would probably presume that I am hateful for what I have written.

At the GodBlog conference, someone mentioned that if we fear saying something wrong on our blogs, we would never write anything! Good point! Writing is always something that needs to carefully be considered. However, no one is perfect nor can anyone ever be perfect in such an endeavor. If each of us waited to say only the perfect things, we could never, ever even get started...amen?

But God's Word IS perfect. This is (or should be) our standard of measurement for all that we do and say as Christians.

Sharing the mercy, love and grace of God is the easy part. Informing people of what the Bible tells us about holiness, righteousness, and the ultimate justice of God is often a very touchy subject and is not as easy to convey lovingly to those who are perishing. But the Gospel requires both. Why? Because God has all of those attributes.

I have found that sometimes I have been successful with some topics, yet at other times I have not been so successful. It may have something to do with mixing politics with evangelism. I am learning that there are some topics that I may not have handled correctly. For this reason, I want to offer a sincere apology to all who have come here and have been hurt by my words. This wasn't my goal. That isn't my heart. But just like in any endeavor, a person's true heart and motives can sometimes be misconstrued because improper words were used while attempting to minister.

Have you ever read something written by another person and you've thought..."I wish I had said that?" I had that experience this morning while reading a very moving guest commentary in the Christian newspaper called, "The Good News, Etc.." In my opinion, the words of the author applied all of the attributes of God simultaneously and in a very loving way. If you read it and happen to disagree, please share why.

First and foremost, I ask for forgiveness from my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Second, I'd just like to offer up my sincere apologies to those dear acquaintances and commentors here who may have been hurt by my words, including Thomas, Boo, Joe, Mamalicious, JJ, Juan, Clandestine, MadGayHousewife, and Crackerlilo (if I've left anyone out please let me know and I will add you). I have come to realize that perhaps I am not the person who should even attempt to minister to homosexual men or lesbian women. I also want to apologize to my dear formerly gay friends Stephen Bennett, Susan Smith, DL Foster and Dean Greer for anything that I may have said, done, or have written that would have hurt any of you or hampered your respective ministries in any way.

In an email a while back, I shared an analogy with my friend Susan in Jerusalem. It came from my training in the cosmetics industry. It goes like this:

When in conversation, the way a person words what they are trying to convey really matters. Take the following two sentences.

"You have a face that could stop a clock."

"When I look at you, time stands still."

They, in effect, say similar things, but one can literally be seen as hurtful and a put down while the other compliments and builds up.

My dear friend Susan! Your kindness towards me; your loving words towards me; your attempts to help me realize that many words can hurt where few words can often build up; your silence when you know that I needed to hear from the Lord; your encouragement directed at me in those few times when I "get it right"; your gentle correction even when I have completely blown it in those times of fleshly error; your unwillingness to condemn me (even when I probably deserved it); and most of all your steadfast faith, love and support in Jesus Christ radiates towards me and has been such a blessing in my life!!

The love of our Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ, shines through like a bright light that has successfully pierced my dark, fleshly heart and revealed what God would have me do, as well as what He would not have me to do. THANK YOU...DEAR SISTER IN CHRIST!

Susan, I know that you have been praying for me for quite some time now. Thank you so much for all of your prayers! It took a while, but God's timing is perfect. I will be praying ever so much more fervently for guidance. I may still have moments where I blow it, stumble and fall again, but He is always there to lift me up!

I want to thank my bible study leader and new friend Mimi for sharing great wisdom from God's Word during our talk yesterday. Your wonderful input and the influence through our current Bible study has helped me so tremendously!

Thank you, also, to all of the aforementioned commentors listed above. It has been through your prompting that I needed to get back on my knees and pray to the Lord for forgiveness. I hope that each of you might forgive me as well.

I may not create any new blogposts about this particular topic again for quite some time. However, each and every one of you are welcome to visit and comment on any of the new topics I plan to cover in the coming days, weeks, and months.

God bless,

Christine

15 comments:

Susan Smith said...

I love you Christine as I blink back my tears. Your humility is worthy of emulation by all believers. With many words there is sin. Love never fails.

Yours in Christ and much love to my sister on the West Coast from Jerusalem. (ss)

mamalicious said...

I appreciate your heart-felt apology. This is the most loving post you have written while I've been reading your blog.

You're right - we all struggle. We explore, we pray, we do what we can to find what is good and right for our lives...and for our children. The best we can do is love each other and respect each other in the journey.

Boo said...

The problem as I saw it was that you seem to let your enthusiasm for fighting "the gay agenda" overwhelm everything else, to the point where you didn't care what it was you were claiming or passing along as long as it was against "the gay agenda." Regardless of your religious views, you're going to have to face up to the fact that a lot of the people on "your side" lie through their teeth on a regular basis.

It didn't bother me so much that you fell for the lies, it bothered my that you didn't seem to care.

mamalicious said...

I just want to say, too, that in the last several weeks I've examined my motive for having "conversations" with you. I think that I want you to see that I'm a mom, just like you...that I want a good, wholesome life for my children and believe that I am giving them that. The fact that I'm gay doesn't matter - I see to be loving and kind and do what is right. I know you do, too. Our paths have just kind of crashed...and it's been interesting to try and work things out.

Clandestine said...

I also appreciate your apology. I think that you do mean what you're saying, and that you do recognize that some of things you have said may not have come accross as lovingly or 'Christ-like' as you may have intended.

As mamalicious said, I think my intent in commenting here before was to try to show you and others that there are more viewpoints out in the world and that it will never happen that we all agree. I know you don't like the saying or premise "agree to disagree," but that's what we have to do if we want to share the planet.

Sometimes I want to comment, but know it won't matter. Maybe that will change? We'll have to see. Your truth is not mine, and it never will be, but perhaps what's more important than proving that we're right is proving that we can get along even when we disagree.

We'll see...

Joe Brummer said...

This is just a beautif post. I believe you can write about gays issues, but also take the time to get to know some gay folks. See that we are not anything like the picture that has been painted of us. As Robyn said on Stephen's show it is hard to speak out against people you have taken the time to know and understand.


I have said before, and will say again. I truly believe in the principals of non-violence. The biggest teachers of non-violence were Christ, Gandhi and MLK. With that said Christine, I wold be happy to have to you to dinner at my house with my partner anyday of the week but Monday. (I just hate Mondays.)

I think your post was thoughtful and hopeful. I, so admire your ability to say what you have said. It takes courage to say these things. I hope I have never said anything to hurt your feelings, also.

Big hugs and warm wishes.

Jaded&Opinionated said...

I offer my apology to you as well for being as aggressive as I have been in the past. We do agree on one basic thing... Christ was born, He died for our sins, He rose from the dead and He will come again. We each celebrate that and worship Him in the way we feel is best. We each have a relationship with the Lord that is satisfying and fulfilling and we each believe that our walk with the Lord pleases Him. Our paths may be different, but our destination is the same. There isn't a person alive who has all the answers. No one ever will. But we search for those answers on the journey and pray that we've listened as He's guided us.

As for homosexual issues and gay bashing, well... it's not up to me to judge any human being. I don't get to decide who goes to heaven and who doesn't. I think in the end we will all be pleasantly surprised at just how loving and merciful God is. I see no reason to single out any particular group for any reason and tell them that they're going to hell, even if you believe that's what it says in the Bible. We can't know what is in anyone's heart, nor can we know the depth of anyone's private walk with the Lord. I believe the best way to reach people is to welcome them with open arms and love. Live a good life, love each other, show kindness to everyone, feed the hungry, give to those less fortunate and through your example, people will want to have the kind of peace and happiness that you have. When you tell them that your peace comes from Jesus, perhaps that will lead them to Him.

Just my opinion.

Christinewjc said...

Thanks everyone, for your kind and thoughtful words. I really appreciated reading them. I can't blame some of you for still feeling a bit skeptical, so in your cases, as you have stated, we will have to see how we proceed from here.

My friend Rocky often sends me such timely emails. Perhaps he reads my blog but chooses not to post. Maybe I should ask him...duh! ;-)

Years ago, he did give me the open invitation to post his work anywhere that I saw as a fitting forum. This email really spoke to my heart this morning and is especially significant as it relates to my original post.

Read it and see if you agree!

Christine

*******

How to Change

I labored to change my ways
But I learned that I should watch my speech instead

James 3:2 We all stumble in many ways. If anyone is never at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check.

I labored to change the words of my mouth

But I learned to guard my heart instead

Luke 6:45 The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.

And so I labored for how to put good things into my heart

This is when I saw Martha and Mary

Luke 10:38-42 Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word. But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me. And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.

Mary fixed herself on Jesus
That fed her heart

So out of the abundance of her heart she spoke

The good things she spoke brought good things and good behavior

She became a light as she was filled with the light of Christ

2 Cor 3:18 And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

2 Cor 4:6 For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.

We reflect Him

We reflect the light of God

Not to just ourselves, but also others

Because we stare into His face everything is changed

Our hearts, our words, our ways, even those around us


Rocky

*******

Rocky...you are a beautiful brother in Christ!!

Boo said...

"Thanks everyone, for your kind and thoughtful words. I really appreciated reading them. I can't blame some of you for still feeling a bit skeptical, so in your cases, as you have stated, we will have to see how we proceed from here."

But that's the thing, Christine. You keep doing it. Your latest post again promotes the lie-filled "Marketing of Evil" book. And from the new article Kupelian wrote, we find he's not just a liar, he's a racist:

"There's a force out there that wants evil in my life and my generation's life. It's not just the fact that they want our money. They are purveyors of evil.

It disgusted me to see so many of the so-called "coolest" and looked-up-to kids being revered when in fact they were suffering from a hideous identity crisis. Any white senior wearing a Malcolm X hat backwards and intentionally altering his voice so as to sound like an uneducated black male raised in the ghetto is nothing but a joke to me now. The strange thing is, this is what my peers like and respect."

Kupelian seems to have no problem reprinting without any criticism this letter he claims to have received, wherein the writer essentially equates being an uneducated black man from the ghetto with being evil.

In the article the chapter from his book was based on, "Why today's youth culture
has gone insane," he equates body piercing with amputation fetishism, "suspension," and bug chasing. I might think somebody with six piercings in one ear looks a little odd, but it doesn't make them an insane satanist in love with death, it just means their tastes are different from mine.

"Well now, is it just my imagination, or is there something about today's celebratory piercing and tattooing of the body, and the free sex that permeates this culture, that literally evokes the spirit of Sodom and Gomorrah? It's as though the rebellious spirit of reprobate, pagan civilizations of the past was being tapped into (dare I say "channeled"?) by today's pop culture."

Hmm, yes, I see the direct connection between having a belly button ring and being a violent rapist. Has it ever occurred to you that Kupelian could be the one doing the marketing? This is not a good man, Christine. Jesus doesn't need people to lie and whip up paranoia for Him.

Christinewjc said...

Boo,

In your particular opinion, David Kupelian's book is 'filled with lies.' He has cited many reliable sources where he gathered the information so it is probably your claim that is most likely bogus and your opinions of him are obviously ideologically driven.

Just because you don't particularly like what he has written doesn't mean that it isn't truthful and accurate.

I'm curious, have you read the book? Or are you just forming your opinion based on one or two chapters and/or hearsay?

Anyone can twist another person's motives and reasons for stating what they do when writing a book. David's views come from the Biblical Christian worldview (which you obviously don't agree with based on your replies to me here at this blog) and he has the free speech right to state them.

The young people who wrote those letters to David were expressing their own personal views about what has been happening to them in the culture. If they were unhappy with their lives and wanted to get away from former behaviors, why do you have to make disparaging remarks about the man whose book helped them do just that?

What it is with you Boo? You want to keep the unhappy ganstas and piercers, cutters, etc. in their closet of pain and suffering or what?

Never mind. Don't even reply. You have revealed your true motives and purpose for coming to this blog. You are not here for conversation, you are here to rant and rave against anything that you don't like. So be it.

You obviously disagree with and disdain practically everything that I write about. I am politely requesting that you please find another blog where the conversation will be more to your liking. Your Jesus comment was really uncalled for. I think that parting company would do us both a lot of good.

mamalicious said...

Wow, Christine. I really thought we were going to see you make an effort to continue the dialogue. I think Boo makes some valid points, too. Your response is just mean. I have only seen Boo's comments to be intelligent and patient. She has valid questions and I know this is your blog, but I don't see why you're kicking her out.

Boo said...

"In your particular opinion, David Kupelian's book is 'filled with lies.' He has cited many reliable sources where he gathered the information so it is probably your claim that is most likely bogus and your opinions of him are obviously ideologically driven."

Here's something I really don't get: when it comes to the Bible, a book compiled over thousands of years in a vastly different culture which has gone through many translations, you insist there's only one right way to look at it, period. Yet when it comes to the claims of the current anti-gay movement, which can actually be factually verified, suddenly you're all about how everybody has differing opinions. Which is it?

"I'm curious, have you read the book? Or are you just forming your opinion based on one or two chapters and/or hearsay?"

I've read the first chapter, wherin he made a number of claims which were not true, including that the "blueprint" for the gay rights movement is an obscure 18 year old book nobody outside of right-wing circles has ever heard of, he equated the entire gay rights movement with ACT-UP, he falsely claimed both that "sadomasochists, leather fetishists, cross-dressers, transgenders," are only found in the gay community and that the gay rights movement is some kind of trojan horse for them, he called the Dr. Laura boycott "psychological terrorism" while conveniently ignoring AFA's regular boycotts of Ford, Disney, NBC, and too many others to list, and he falsely claimed that the gay rights movement will somehow overturn the 1st amendment and criminalize anti-gay speech.

I then read the article WND states became the basis for his third chapter, wherein he falsely equates body piercing with bug chasing, sadomasochistic torture, and Sodom and Gohmorrah.

So, with 2 for 2, I figure he doesn't have a very good track record.

"Anyone can twist another person's motives and reasons for stating what they do when writing a book. David's views come from the Biblical Christian worldview (which you obviously don't agree with based on your replies to me here at this blog) and he has the free speech right to state them."

Indeed, anyone can twist another's motivation, like David Kupelian does when he claims navel piercing is part of a satanic plot. He has the right to state any views he wants, but he's still lying.

"The young people who wrote those letters to David were expressing their own personal views about what has been happening to them in the culture. If they were unhappy with their lives and wanted to get away from former behaviors, why do you have to make disparaging remarks about the man whose book helped them do just that?"

The young man who wrote the first letter to David made an extremely racist remark, and David put it in the article without comment. The fact that many black men in inner cities have certain clothing and speaking styles that aren't to everyone's taste does not make them evil.

"What it is with you Boo? You want to keep the unhappy ganstas and piercers, cutters, etc. in their closet of pain and suffering or what?"

This is the same mistake Kupelian makes (besides the lying). Anything he doesn't like becomes "evil." Any behavior he doesn't care for gets associated with the most extreme, unhealthy behaviors he can come up with. Nose rings get equated with bug chasing. Baggy pants get equated with cutting or "self-inflicted castration."

"Never mind. Don't even reply. You have revealed your true motives and purpose for coming to this blog. You are not here for conversation, you are here to rant and rave against anything that you don't like. So be it."

I'm here to try and get you to be a little more critical of the people who are using you to spread untruths.

"You obviously disagree with and disdain practically everything that I write about. I am politely requesting that you please find another blog where the conversation will be more to your liking. Your Jesus comment was really uncalled for. I think that parting company would do us both a lot of good."

Actually there are a lot of things you write that I do agree with. My Jesus remark was blunt but on target, but you're probably right. There are some things you're just not ready to face up to yet, so I guess we should part company.

Christinewjc said...

Mamalicious,

I don't agree that Boo made "some valid points too."

Why did you label my response as mean and hers not? You don't think that constantly accusing me of lying and spreading such lies through the recommendation of a book that agrees with most of the morals and values of mainstream America is meanspirited?

You don't see anything wrong with her "Jesus doesn't need people to lie and whip up paranoia for Him" comment? What if I said that to her? You would probably call me on it. But it appears that you're not willing to recognize her insults hurled towards my beliefs. Is this because I happen to agree with much of David's analysis regarding the marketing of evil in our culture?

Why don't you see her arrogance in her "Jesus" statement? She portends to know what Jesus would want in these situations, yet she obviously rejects the Words of truth contained in the Bible. What is wrong with that picture?

I don't want to argue in such a way. It is undesirable for me to continue to do so. It is also unfruitful.

Most people who argue in such ways think morality is relative and whatever is 'right in their own eyes' is a valid way to live. That's fine if she wants to believe and live in that way. But the Bible has a very different way of looking at such a mindset.

As David writes in the "killer culture" chapter:

"The fact is, what has risen "out of the pit" in today's world bears a striking resemblance to the ageless spirit of defiant paganism, a spirit now inhabiting millions of people "freed" by trauma (drugs, illicit sex, bodily mutilation, and so on) from the pain of their own conscience - which is to say, freed from God and the divine law written deep down in every person's heart. Why? Same reason as always: so they can be their own gods and make up their own rules."

He also states, "Of course, in a very real sense they are also victims - they've been set up for all of this."

That is David's main point. Kids have been set up to accept practices and things that in the past would have been absolutely shunned. I agree with him that this is directly responsible for many of the ills currently swirling around in our culture; all to the detriment of our children. What is so sad is that much of this usually occurs below the radar screen of the child. They don't even know that they have been had!

However, when they are awakened to the farce that they have been presented with (i.e. through Kupelian's book) and recognize the indoctrination that they have
been subjected to and experienced, it is quite illuminating and liberating.

I have seen the resentment of so many young people. It is so sad! It turns into a suppressed kind of rage which is in turn destructive and unpredictable.

David states, "It is like a radioactive foreign element in their makeup which leads them into every manner of problem, complex, and evil imaginable."

They feel compelled to act out and rebel against all authority out of revenge for falsely thinking their parents have failed them. It makes every forbidden thing appear to be attractive and they incorrectly think that they are on the road to personal freedom.

But as David vividly points out in his book, they are being sold corruption disguised as freedom.

My daughter and I have had long talks about such corruption and those friends and acquaintances who desperately need help with their thinking. But they often refuse to trust or listen to those who love them the most and want the very best for them...their parents.

Yes. There are some bad parents out there, but the situations between these particular teens and their parents are due to good parents being rejected by their kids because of bad cultural influences.

In my daughter's case, there were a few instances where if I wasn't on the lookout for her total well-being, she could have succombed to the miserable subculture that lurks out there to devour her.

She was raised with real understanding, moral fortitude and insight and was thus protected from most of the insanity of the popular culture until she was old enough and strong enough in her convictions to go out in the world and make her mark. She is still growing tremendously in this kind of light and I pray it grows!

Now that she is in college, she is seeing the poor choices often made by students who think that licentiousness is liberty. Just the opposite often proves to be true. These kids have been caught into a web of lies which often lead them into terrible unhealthy behaviors and sexual choices. They are locked in rebellion. Such rebellion often leads to much misery. Many are already reaping the consequences of their awful choices and habits.

Well...didn't mean to type this much but perhaps I needed to.

I didn't kick boo out as you had stated. I politely requested that she seeks out a blog that would probably be more in line with her views. She appears to only have contempt towards me and everything that I post here. Thus, it isn't very pleasant for either one of us.

One blogging acquaintance of mine calls people who constantly post and act in negative ways like this, "trolls." Here is her definition of a troll:

" [R]egularly posts specious arguments, flames or personal attacks to a newsgroup, discussion list, or in email for no other purpose than to annoy someone or disrupt a discussion. Trolls are recognizable by the fact that they have no real interest in learning about the topic at hand - they simply want to utter flame bait. Like the ugly creatures they are named after, they exhibit no redeeming characteristics, and as such, they are recognized as a lower form of life on the net"

Now THAT'S extremely harsh! I have only had one person in the past who actually fit that entire description (hashishan prophet).

But several others have fallen into the category of "wanting to utter flame bait."

That hp character was the only one whom I have actually thrown off of my blog. She was absolutely despicable in her abominable cursing hurled at our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. She deserved to be banned and her posts were all deleted, too. I just won’t have insults about Jesus on my blog. This is my forum, and no one has the "freedom" to insult the name of Jesus on it!

Sometimes it is more difficult to recognize those who are only here to "utter flame bait." But when people come here to hurl insults and disagreement with everything being said, my question is why are they even here?? Why bother? The only logical reason is for them to engage in inflaming, disparaging and insulting dialogue. Who wants or needs that? I can take some of it, but when it is constant and consistently thrown at me, I think I have the right to say when enough is enough.

mamalicious said...

Hi Christine;

Perhaps I see your posts as very emotionally charged (as I'm sure they are). I see Boo as trying to be rational and ask important questions. You get really defensive sometimes with your responses and that's all I was really trying to say. Maybe "mean" wasn't the right word. I'm sorry about that.

I think it's very much worth questioning the people we read.

"Most people who argue in such ways think morality is relative and whatever is 'right in their own eyes' is a valid way to live."

This comment is dangerous. It's another generalization that does none of us any good. Can you see that?

I see every day that our culture has contributed to moral decline. I see kids who have fallen prey to many types of influences...I don't disagree that a parent must be present and questioning at all times. I worry very much about my own children...I can agree with you in much of what you said in that regard.

Can we just continue the conversation respectfully? Just because Boo asks you to take a good look at the motives and the truth behind the author doesn't mean you're a bad person - it just means that we all need to be careful what we read and what we believe. I tell my children and my students all the time to be well-informed but to make sure they're getting good and accurate information. Isn't that what we're all looking for?

I'm sorry if I offended you in my last post - I probably reacted too harshly. I know that if we want to continue the conversation we need to be respectful.

Boo said...

Ok, a few last points that are probably pointless to make by this point:

"Why did you label my response as mean and hers not? You don't think that constantly accusing me of lying and spreading such lies through the recommendation of a book that agrees with most of the morals and values of mainstream America is meanspirited?"

I don't think you're a liar, in the sense of someone intentionally saying things they know aren't true. I think you're being used to spread the lies of others. The degree to which Kupelian's book "agrees with most of the morals and values of mainstream America" is irrelevant to whether or not its claims are true.

"You don't see anything wrong with her "Jesus doesn't need people to lie and whip up paranoia for Him" comment? What if I said that to her? You would probably call me on it. But it appears that you're not willing to recognize her insults hurled towards my beliefs. Is this because I happen to agree with much of David's analysis regarding the marketing of evil in our culture?"

Actually, the Jesus remark was about David, not you. If you made that remark to me, I'd agree with it, because it's true. I have yet to come across an ex-gay or anti-gay activist who does not resort to saying things that aren't true sooner or later. Even the ones who take pains to claim how different they are than all the others, like Warren Throckmorton or Chad Thompson, I've caught them in lies. I'm sorry you perceived my remark as an insult to your beliefs, especially since your beliefs about the person of Jesus are probably pretty close to identical to mine.

"Why don't you see her arrogance in her "Jesus" statement? She portends to know what Jesus would want in these situations, yet she obviously rejects the Words of truth contained in the Bible. What is wrong with that picture?"

I would assume we could all agree Jesus doesn't like people trying to build His kingdom on lies. I don't reject the Bible, Christine, I just disagree with you about some of the interpretation of the Bible (and probably quite a bit less than you think).

"Most people who argue in such ways think morality is relative and whatever is 'right in their own eyes' is a valid way to live. That's fine if she wants to believe and live in that way. But the Bible has a very different way of looking at such a mindset."

I don't understand your logic here. If I believed that morality was relative, then I wouldn't believe it's not ok for the David Kupelians of the world to lie. I definitely believe in objective, transcendant morality, I just happen to disagree with you about some of the content of that morality (again, probably quite a bit less than you think).

"That is David's main point. Kids have been set up to accept practices and things that in the past would have been absolutely shunned. I agree with him that this is directly responsible for many of the ills currently swirling around in our culture; all to the detriment of our children. What is so sad is that much of this usually occurs below the radar screen of the child. They don't even know that they have been had!"

Personally, I suspect David's main point was to write a polemic that would stir up the religious right base, but that's just my personal suspicions and I can't read his heart so I hope I'm wrong. He's got some valid points about how marketers manipulate kids and how the internet has helped to spread unhealthy behaviors like that "body modification" web forum, but he wraps it all up with paranoid anti-gay rhetoric, lies, and the assertion that it's all part of some kind of deliberate satanic plot.

"I didn't kick boo out as you had stated. I politely requested that she seeks out a blog that would probably be more in line with her views. She appears to only have contempt towards me and everything that I post here. Thus, it isn't very pleasant for either one of us."

I don't have contempt for you, although I do have contempt for many of the people who are using you. I've actually liked a lot of your scriptural posts. You may have developed a different impression of me if I had posted more in support of the posts I agreed with, and for that I'm sorry. I guess I've been more eager to condemn the bad than affirm the good.

I'm sorry you see me as only being here because I am "wanting to utter flame bait." What I've been wanting to do is get you to be a little more critical of people who seem to have no concern for truth or who they might hurt even if they are on your side of the issue.

However, at this point it looks like that's pretty much a lost cause. You're just not willing to look at anything outside of your own particular worldview. It may be easier for you to assume that people who disagree with you must be moral relativists, but the world simply isn't divided into your own particular brand of fundamentalism vs. the pawns of Satan. I guess we'll just agree to disagree and pray for each other.