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The Falling Away

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January 29, 2018, 01:21:57 am Christian40 says: It will be interesting to see what happens this year Israel being 70 years as a modern nation may 14 2018
October 17, 2017, 01:25:20 am Christian40 says: It is good to type Mark is here again!  Smiley
October 16, 2017, 03:28:18 am Christian40 says: anyone else thinking that time is accelerating now? it seems im doing days in shorter time now is time being affected in some way?
September 24, 2017, 10:45:16 pm Psalm 51:17 says: The specific rule pertaining to the national anthem is found on pages A62-63 of the league rulebook. It states: “The National Anthem must be played prior to every NFL game, and all players must be on the sideline for the National Anthem. “During the National Anthem, players on the field and bench area should stand at attention, face the flag, hold helmets in their left hand, and refrain from talking. The home team should ensure that the American flag is in good condition. It should be pointed out to players and coaches that we continue to be judged by the public in this area of respect for the flag and our country. Failure to be on the field by the start of the National Anthem may result in discipline, such as fines, suspensions, and/or the forfeiture of draft choice(s) for violations of the above, including first offenses.”
September 20, 2017, 04:32:32 am Christian40 says: "The most popular Hepatitis B vaccine is nothing short of a witch’s brew including aluminum, formaldehyde, yeast, amino acids, and soy. Aluminum is a known neurotoxin that destroys cellular metabolism and function. Hundreds of studies link to the ravaging effects of aluminum. The other proteins and formaldehyde serve to activate the immune system and open up the blood-brain barrier. This is NOT a good thing."
http://www.naturalnews.com/2017-08-11-new-fda-approved-hepatitis-b-vaccine-found-to-increase-heart-attack-risk-by-700.html
September 19, 2017, 03:59:21 am Christian40 says: bbc international did a video about there street preaching they are good witnesses
September 14, 2017, 08:06:04 am Psalm 51:17 says: bro Mark Hunter on YT has some good, edifying stuff too.
September 14, 2017, 04:31:26 am Christian40 says: i have thought that i'm reaping from past sins then my life has been impacted in ways from having non believers in my ancestry.
September 11, 2017, 06:59:33 am Psalm 51:17 says: The law of reaping and sowing. It's amazing how God's mercy and longsuffering has hovered over America so long. (ie, the infrastructure is very bad here b/c for many years, they were grossly underspent on. 1st Tim 6:10, the god of materialism has its roots firmly in the West) And remember once upon a time ago when shacking up b/w straight couples drew shock awe?

Exodus 20:5  Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
September 11, 2017, 03:40:40 am Christian40 says: those in america should better repent or things will only get worse
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« Reply #330 on: July 10, 2017, 08:05:19 pm »

No Christian Has Ever Taken The Entire Bible Literally  Huh



Recently the Barna Group reprised research that finds only 17 percent of self-described Christians who regularly attend church actually believe the core tenets of Christian teaching. Its new poll, conducted this spring, found that one-quarter of Christians think what is right depends on the views of each individual, and that four in ten are sympathetic to Muslim beliefs.

This spring Gallup also released a survey heralding the decline of biblical Christian belief in the United States. The story ran under the blaring headline: “Record Few Americans Believe Bible is Literal Word of God.” Unlike the Barna research, however, this survey says more about Gallup’s ignorance of Christianity than it does about the state of American Christian belief.

The survey purports to show that less than a quarter of Americans—only 24 percent—believe that the Bible is actually God’s word. By contrast, 26 percent say that it is a collection of manmade myth, history, and precept. Gallup offers as a possible explanation the hypothesis that Americans want to embrace the scriptures as divinely inspired while leaving themselves free to interpret away negative biblical statements about issues like gay marriage and physician-assisted suicide.

“Americans…still largely accept the Bible as a holy document, but most…downplay God’s direct role in it,” Gallup reports. The story sums up its findings by reiterating the conclusion that Americans hesitate to describe the Bible as actually God’s word: “Over the past three decades, Americans’ view of the Bible as the literal word of God has been declining.”
Devil in the Details

The problem is that the question Gallup asked its respondents has no bearing on the alleged finding of the survey. The question does not ask whether the Bible is literally the word of God, but whether the Bible is the word of God and should always be interpreted literally.

The question Gallup asked reads as follows: “Which of the following statements comes closest to describing your views about the Bible – [1] the Bible is the actual word of God and is to be taken literally, word for word, [2] the Bible is the inspired word of God but not everything in it should be taken literally, or [3] the Bible is an ancient book of fables, legends, history, and moral precepts recorded by man?”

Belief that the Bible is not “the literal word of God”—the wording used in Gallup’s conclusion—seems to mean belief that the Bible is not actually God’s word. (That Gallup means this is confirmed by its description of its contrasting second option as the belief that the Bible is “at least God-inspired if not God’s own words.”) On the other hand, belief that the Bible is not “to be taken literally, word for word”—the wording actually used in Gallup’s question—means to believe that some parts of the Bible are not to be interpreted literally, without making any judgment about whether the Bible is God’s word.

The two ideas are entirely distinct. Americans did not reject the idea that the Bible is literally God’s word. They rejected the notion that every part of it is to be interpreted literally.
No One Interprets Everything Literally

There is a further problem. No Christian well-educated in the faith would agree with the statement that the Bible is “the actual word of God and is to be taken literally, word for word.” The first part of the statement may be true, but the second part is certainly false. And a statement that conjoins a true clause and a false clause is false. This is not a question of liberal versus conservative interpretation. Qualified expositors of whatever stripe will agree that reading all parts of the Bible literally is simply terrible exegesis.

Gallup appears to think that reading the Bible faithfully means always reading it literally. Nothing could be further from the truth. Some forms of communication are not supposed to be read in a literal manner. Poetry is the most obvious example, and a significant part of the Bible consists of poetry. When the book of Psalms speaks of trees clapping their hands and mountains skipping about, no one in their right mind takes this poetic expression as intended to convey literal truth.

Idiom and figures of speech are also not meant to be read literally. If you tell Amelia Bedelia that you drank a glass of water, she might think you swallowed your cup, but most people understand that such expressions convey something different from the literal meaning of the individual words. Similarly, when Deuteronomy speaks of God leading the Israelites “with a strong hand and an outstretched arm” one is not supposed to take the expression as implying that an immaterial being has physical body parts.

Still another example is apocalyptic. The book of Revelation seems lurid and strange to the uninitiated reader, but it belonged to a well-known genre in the ancient world. Apocalypses were intensely figurative books. Instead of writing literally about the evil of serving pagan gods with one’s thoughts and actions, one might write figuratively about the evil of being branded on head and hand with the mark of an evil beast. To drive the point home, one might give that beast a “number,” 666, that corresponds to the name of a well-known despot (the emperor Nero).

In all of these instances, literal reading and faithful reading are two very different things. The purpose of faithful analysis of a text is to discover the author’s intention. If one interprets literally what the author meant to be figurative, one will fail to interpret the text correctly. The problem for orthodox Christianity in America, in other words, is not that fewer people agreed to Gallup’s first statement that the Bible should be interpreted literally, word for word. The problem is that anyone agreed to it at all.
What Does the Survey Mean?

Gallup’s survey did not find that few Americans believe the Bible to be literally God’s word. It is hard to say what it found, actually. Did fewer people say the Bible is to be interpreted literally because fewer Americans take Christianity seriously? Or did fewer people give that response because Christians are becoming better educated about their faith? And how many were confused because they realized there was no good answer and therefore chose option one or option two randomly as a result? It is impossible to say, based on Gallup’s data.

All one can really be sure of is the broadest dichotomy Gallup offered. Twenty-six percent of Americans believe the Bible is a human document. That is an increase of about 5 percentage points from two years back. Yet 71 percent of Americans still believe that the Bible is, at least in some sense, God’s word. That is perhaps a more surprising result, and certainly a more optimistic one for American Christianity, than the faulty conclusion of the study. Reports of the demise of American Christianity may have been greatly exaggerated.

Jonathan Ashbach is a PhD student in politics at Hillsdale College. Jonathan has worked in the hospitality industry and as assistant editor for the Humboldt Economic Index. His work has also been published on Patheos.

http://thefederalist.com/2017/07/10/memo-gallup-no-christian-ever-taken-entire-bible-literally/
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« Reply #331 on: July 20, 2017, 03:38:09 am »

‘Harry Potter and the Sacred Text’ podcast draws non-believers who find meaning in magical fiction

Mark Kennedy grew up a Catholic, and a Harry Potter fanatic. Only one stuck.

“I considered myself a non-spiritual person,” he said. He thought he was done with religion. And then he stumbled on the podcast “Harry Potter and the Sacred Text.”

The podcast told him that the Harry Potter series — the books that he always turned to for solace when he was angry or stressed or in need of an escape — could be a source of spiritual sustenance.

“I feel like I’m born again,” he said.

On Tuesday night, Kennedy came to an event space at Sixth & I Historic Synagogue in the District with hundreds of fellow fans of the podcast, who have found a surprising spirituality in the magical fiction series, which turns 20 years old this year.

Hosted by Harvard Divinity School graduates Casper ter Kuile and Vanessa Zoltan, the podcast “Harry Potter and the Sacred Text” became the number-two podcast in America on iTunes soon after it debuted last summer. It has inspired face-to-face Potter text reading groups, akin to Bible study more than book club, in cities across the country. In Harvard Square, ter Kuile and Zoltan host a weekly church-like service for the secular focused on a Potter text’s meaning.

In the episode they taped at Sixth & I, they used one chapter of the third Harry Potter book as a vehicle for discussing the topics of trust, betrayal, love and prejudice (against werewolves).

Touring the country this summer, the podcasters have been met night after night by adoring, mostly millennial crowds who want to soak up their secular meaning-making. For the growing slice of Americans who label themselves “spiritual but not religious,” Casper ter Kuile and Vanessa Zoltan are kind of pop stars.

[Meet the ‘nones,’ the Democratic Party’s biggest faith constituency]

The irony is, the pair are skeptical about secularism.

“It doesn’t speak to people’s hearts and souls,” Zoltan said during a recent interview. “I get that people get connection and meaning from Soul Cycle, but will [those people] visit you when your mom is dying?”

Zoltan and ter Kuile are complicated evangelists for their own cause. Even as their following grows, they are still pondering some big questions: Can non-traditional types of meaning-making build community? Can texts that are deeply moving to readers truly hold them to account in the way Scripture has among the God-fearing?

Neither one of them puts much faith in Humanism, though Zoltan tried working as a chaplain at the lively, cutting-edge secularism center at Harvard called the Humanist Hub, where there is a Sunday school for kids based on ethics. People who don’t want to join an organized religion aren’t looking to label themselves part of a religion for atheists either, ter Kuile said.

“That’s all being unbundled. You might get your ecstatic experience at Soul Cycle, and your community in your book group, and your [spiritual] formation in Harry Potter or ‘On Being,'” he said.

[Clergy who don’t believe in organized religion? Humanists think 2017 is their time to grow.]

The podcasters said they worry that these disparate experiences leave people much lonelier than experiences that are all tied up within one faith community.

“I’m scared what we’re going to do without the buildings. Some of the best things in the world happen in church basements,” Zoltan said. “That’s where you have sex ed classes, and that’s where you have kids on their church trip to build houses, and that’s where you house the new immigrant, and that’s where you register to vote…. I’m terrified if there aren’t these designated spaces. They’re called sanctuaries for a reason.”

On their summer cross-country tour, which concluded in the District this week, the podcasters did fill church and synagogue auditoriums with fans in their 20s and 30s, many of whom hadn’t set foot in a house of worship in years.

[How decades of divorce helped erode religion]

They said that their podcast doesn’t aim to offer all the benefits of a religious community, but does strive to provide the moral insights that seekers gain from study of Scripture. In their podcast, they use the rigorous methods they learned in divinity school, like the Benedictine monks’ practice of lectio divina and the medieval florilegium, to parse the lines of Harry Potter, which they typically refer to as “the text.”

In the seven-book adventure story of Harry Potter growing up, mastering his magical powers, forming friendships and fighting the evil wizard Voldemort, ter Kuile and Zoltan find an ethical theme in every chapter, like “duty,” “forgiveness,” “mercy,” love,” “heartbreak,” “sanctuary” and “grace.”

Onstage at Sixth & I, they parsed a solitary sentence from the third book, selected by the audience: “The important thing is, I was watching it carefully this evening.”

Following a Jewish study method called Pardes, they analyzed the sole sentence on four levels, leading from the actual events of the story — a professor, looking at a moving map to see if it reveals that his students are in trouble — to an eventual sermonic conclusion. “I think what I would preach is that everybody needs to be taken care of in different ways. You should take care of the person in the form they need to be taken care of, not in the way that works for you. We have to teach each other how to take care of each other,” Zoltan said.

She said in an interview that she hopes this sort of close reading teaches moral values.

“To me, the goal of treating the text as sacred is that we can learn to treat each other as sacred. If you can learn to love these characters, to love Draco Malfoy, then you can learn to love the cousin you haven’t spoken to for 30 years, then the refugee down the street,” Zoltan said.

Attendees at Sixth & I lined up to buy t-shirts reading “Harry Potter is my sacred text,” but Zoltan and ter Kuile say they’re not trying to create a new religious identity, and they don’t think anyone comes away from the podcast thinking his or her religion is now Harry Potter-ist. (They also say they have never communicated with J. K. Rowling, who wrote the texts that they study and promote.)

Sally Taylor, 23, came to Sixth & I toting her journal. The trip to Washington to see the podcast taping was her graduation gift to herself for finishing her degree at the University of North Carolina in Asheville. She’s been writing down “sparklets” — a word she learned from the show for phrases that stand out to the listener as imbued with meaning — and she wanted to write more during the live taping.

“It always gives me guidance in a way I didn’t know I needed,” Taylor, who said she has no religion, said about the podcast.

That’s the goal. For a book to be sacred, Zoltan said, “You have to believe a text can give you blessings. You have to read it with rigor, commitment and practice, and do it with others.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2017/07/19/harry-potter-and-the-sacred-text-podcast-draws-non-believers-who-find-meaning-in-magical-fiction/?utm_term=.f47cf023331c
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« Reply #332 on: July 28, 2017, 07:19:00 pm »

Australian Leaders React to Proposed ‘Jesus Ban’ in Schools – Faithwire



Government officials in the Australian state of Queensland have introduced a policy that would ban Christmas cards, references to Jesus, and anything that could be classified as “evangelization” from public schools, the Daily Mail Australia reported.

A recent Department of Education report voices concerns that unbridled freedom of religion has led to non-religious children being “forced” to entertain the Christian beliefs of their peers.

According to these officials, schools are expected “to take appropriate action” if they find that students who receive “religious instruction” are evangelizing to those who do not. “Evangelization” covers a range of speech and actions, including distributing Christmas cards with photos or words referencing Jesus’ birth and life, making religious-themed ornaments, and handing out bracelets to share “the good news about Jesus.”

If such evangelization is left unchecked, the report claims that it could “adversely affect the school’s ability to provide a safe, supportive and inclusive ­environment.”

According to the Daily Mail, the recent initiative comes after Queensland Education Minister Kate Jones promised to crack down on religious practices. The report has received negative reactions from religious freedom advocates and political leaders who fear Jones has gone too far.

Speaking to The Australian, Neil Foster, a religion and law professor, called the Department of Education’s requests “deeply concerning” and “possibly illegal.”

Centre for Independent Studies research fellow Peter Kurti said the report constitutes a “massive assault on freedom of speech and freedom of religion” and believes that the government’s concerns are completely unwarranted.

“I don’t think that children have the maturity to comprehend let alone evangelize,” he told The Australian.

On Thursday, Education Minister Jones assured that there have been no officials changes to state policy regarding the issue, stressing that “no one is telling a child what they can and can’t say in the playground,” Sky News reported.

Still, a number of Queensland members of parliament, including Fisher MP Andrew Wallace and Fairfax MP Ted O’Brien, have called the mere suggestion of such a policy “ludicrous,” and have called for the government to officially denounce the ban.


http://www.faithwire.com/2017/07/27/its-a-massive-assault-on-free-speech-australian-leaders-react-to-proposed-jesus-ban-in-schools/
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« Reply #333 on: July 31, 2017, 07:31:43 pm »

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« Reply #334 on: August 08, 2017, 02:16:24 pm »

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« Reply #335 on: August 08, 2017, 07:55:22 pm »

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« Reply #336 on: August 28, 2017, 04:22:35 pm »

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« Reply #337 on: August 30, 2017, 08:11:05 pm »

John Piper, James Dobson and John MacArthur Join Hands to Stand Against Apostasy



funny

https://www.charismanews.com/politics/issues/67070-john-piper-james-dobson-and-john-macarthur-join-hands-to-stand-against-apostasy
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« Reply #338 on: September 04, 2017, 09:01:39 pm »

More than half in UK are non-religious, suggests survey

For the first time, more than half of people in the UK do not identify as religious, a survey suggests.

Last year 53% of people described themselves as having "no religion", in a survey of 2,942 adults by the National Centre for Social Research.

Among those aged between 18 and 25, the proportion was higher at 71%.

The Bishop of Liverpool said God and the Church "remains relevant" and that saying "no religion was not the same as considered atheism".

The figures, shown to BBC Radio 5 live, reveal a downward trend for religious belief in the UK.

When the national centre's British Social Attitudes survey began in 1983, 31% of respondents said they had no religion.

A random sample of adults were involved in the latest survey and they were asked whether they regarded themselves as belonging to a particular religion.

Almost two in three 25 to 34 year olds said they were non-religious, while 75% of people aged 75 and over said they were religious.

Tamsin, a 26-year-old travel journalist, goes to the Sunday Assembly, a secular congregation that meets in London every fortnight.

Speaking to 5 live's Rosanna Pound-Woods, she said: "I'm not religious at all. I like the fact that this is a way for community to come together, without having to be about religion."

At times in her life where religion might be important traditionally, like deaths or weddings, she said: "I turn to my friends and just tend to celebrate or commiserate together."

Another member of the congregation, Mitsky, was raised as a Jain - an ancient Indian religion - but now considers himself more atheist.

"Most religions have good basic principles, but certain religions take them maybe in a different direction which I didn't really tend to agree with," the 38-year-old said.

"I was heavily involved in that community here in London and I do miss it, which is why I was looking for something else."

The latest figures show that for people who were born into a religious household, four in 10 are no longer religious.

rest: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-41150792
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« Reply #339 on: September 14, 2017, 09:13:37 pm »



http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=91417740492

The Spirit of Constant Conspiracy And Paranoia
9/14/2017 (THU)
Audio: http://mp3.sa-media.com/download/91417740492/91417740492.mp3
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« Reply #340 on: September 21, 2017, 08:35:48 pm »

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« Reply #341 on: September 26, 2017, 12:27:06 pm »

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« Reply #342 on: September 29, 2017, 09:11:53 pm »

http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/christian-church-england-dead-theyre-renting-church-buildings-glamping-pods/
The Christian Church In England Is So Dead They’re Installing Glamping Pods To Attract Customers
The scheme, which is being steered by the Archbishops’ Council, the Church’s "cabinet" chaired by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, comes as churches face smaller congregations and growing repair bills. The first church to have a pod will be St Michael’s in Dulas, near Hay-on-Wye, in Herefordshire’s Golden Valley.

9/29/17

Sleeping in a church is an unusual way to spend more time with God. But those wishing to soak up more liturgical atmosphere can now do so in luxury, thanks to a new Church of England glamping scheme.

“And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.” Revelation 3:14-16 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: Stop for a moment to consider that the entire world speaks the English language. Absolute temperature is Greenwich Mean Time, absolute temperature is measured in British Thermal Units. The preserved word of God resides within the pages of the King James Bible. Yet in spite of all this, and after the past 20 years of the UK ceding more and more ground to muslims and Islam, UK churches are so dead they have started to rent out glamping pods as tourist attractions and weekend spas. The Revelation 3 prophecy of Laodicea continues to be fulfilled before our eyes.

Cash-strapped churches are set to cash in on their scenic charms by hiring out “glamping” accommodation, with lets costing as much as £890 a week. Instead of asking guests to squeeze a sleeping bag between pews, churches will install luxurious oak “pods” – even in buildings where there are still regular services.

    WHAT IS GLAMPING? Glamping is a portmanteau of glamour and camping and describes a style of camping with amenities and, in some cases, resort-style services not usually associated with “traditional” camping. Glamping has become particularly popular with 21st-century tourists seeking the luxuries of hotel accommodation alongside the escapism and adventure recreation of camping.

The pods, which can be removed, will sleep up to six people and will be equipped with the latest flat-screen televisions, free wi-fi, state-of-the-art-kitchens, a lounge and bathroom, as well as under-floor heating and wood-burning stoves.

Ruth Knight, Environmental Policy Officer for the Church of England said, “The aim is for small, quite isolated churches that don’t have a community around them to be able to afford to maintain the building.”

Rural churches were, she said, “among our most cherished architectural heritage sites” as well as ‘community resources”.  She added, “We hope it will catch on. It is responding to a need.”
Holidaymakers will be able to book for days or even weeks, enjoying exclusive use of the historic buildings. But, in churches where Sunday services are still held, their stays will have to be tailored to avoid clashes with services or weddings.

“We would want to shut the pod when we are having services,” said Ms Knight.

“But churches are used to people going in and out, so it’s nothing new there.”

The money raised, which could run into tens of thousands of pounds, would be ploughed back into maintaining the ancient buildings, which, nationally, costs an estimated £100 million a year.

    The scheme, which is being steered by the Archbishops’ Council, the Church’s “cabinet” chaired by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, comes as churches face smaller congregations and growing repair bills. The first church to have a pod will be St Michael’s in Dulas, near Hay-on-Wye, in Herefordshire’s Golden Valley.

Architects have designed a £140,000 prototype that should be open in the 13th century church in 2019. But it is expected that the cost of the pods would drop to £70,000 when they are mass-produced.

Reactions from locals had been “positive” said Tim Bridges, Church Building Support Officer for the Hereford Diocese.

“The church has been closed for ten years,” he said. “But people are keen not to see the church fall down and want it to have a sustainable future.

“This will mean that we can repair this Grade II Listed building and give it a future.”

However, traditionalists have criticized the scheme. Former Conservative Party chairman, Lord Tebbit said, “I don’t think a church is an appropriate place for what would be such a secular use as this, not while it continues to be a working church.”

Anthony Kilmister, the president of the Anglican Association, added, “This has the potential to destroy the prayerful atmosphere of many churches.

“I understand the need for money in the bank, but the spiritual ethos of these buildings must be preserved. This scheme is a step too far.”

Church officials say that, depending on the size of the church, the pod could be constructed sufficiently far away from the altar to allow room for services to continue. The move capitalizes on the growing popularity of “champing”, basic camping in disused churches, which has seen bookings rise 300 percent this year. source
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« Reply #343 on: October 02, 2017, 03:53:09 pm »

http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/schools-across-england-remove-calendar-references-jesus-christ-switching-ce-bce/
Schools Across England Removing All Calendar References To Jesus Christ By Switching To CE And BCE
The traditional terms BC, Before Christ, and AD, Anno Domini, are being ditched for BCE – Before Common Era, and CE – Common Era. The new terms still denote the periods before and after the birth of Christ. Local authority committees drawing up religious education syllabuses say the old terms may upset minorities or non-believers. But critics blasted the move as a ‘capitulation to political correctness’.
10/2/17

Schools across the country have stopped using the terms BC and AD in religious education lessons for fear of offending non-Christians.

“And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.” Revelation 19:16 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: For hundreds of years, the world has used a calendar where each and every year is a direct reference to Jesus of Nazareth. Now in the country from whence the King James Bible first came into being, those references – AD and BC – are being removed from all calendars in the school systems. It is being replaced with CE for ‘common era’ and BCE ‘before the common era’ so favored by atheists, agnostics and Jehovah’s Witnesses. As we get closer to the Rapture of the Church, the world being left behind is preparing to meet Antichrist.

The traditional terms BC, Before Christ, and AD, Anno Domini, are being ditched for BCE – Before Common Era, and CE – Common Era. The new terms still denote the periods before and after the birth of Christ.

Local authority committees drawing up religious education syllabuses say the old terms may upset minorities or non-believers. But critics blasted the move as a ‘capitulation to political correctness’.

Former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey said the rulings by the religious education committees were a ‘great shame’.

Muslim and Jewish leaders were also mystified, saying they were not offended by the familiar terms.

Local authority committees – known as Standing Advisory Councils for Religious Education (SACREs) – from Brighton and Essex are among a growing number urging heads to ditch BC and AD.

The syllabus for schools in East Sussex, for example, reads: ‘BCE and CE are now used in order to show sensitivity to those who are not Christians.’

Lord Carey said: ‘I have never met a Muslim or Jewish leader who is offended by the Gregorian calendar’ while leading Imam Ibrahim Mogra said: ‘I don’t believe it causes Muslims offence.’ A spokesman for the Board of Deputies of British Jews said: ‘I don’t think anyone would mind if in mainstream schools they use BC and AD.’

Chris McGovern, the chairman of the Campaign for Real Education, said: removing BC and AD ‘is a capitulation to political correctness’.

National Association of Standing Advisory Councils on Religious Education chair Paul Smalley said: ‘Individual SACREs and schools can make a judgment over which form of dating is appropriate.’ source
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« Reply #344 on: October 17, 2017, 05:25:39 pm »

Good without God? More Americans Say Amen to That

 For the first time, a majority of Americans — 56 percent — say it is possible to be a good person without a religious belief.

So says new Pew Research Center data drawn from two polls conducted among about 5,000 American adults in June and July.

“God is not a prerequisite for good values and morality,” Greg Smith, Pew’s associate director of research, said in a post about the findings. ” … [T]he public’s increased rejection of the idea that belief in God is necessary for morality is due, in large part, to the spike in the share of Americans who are religious ‘nones.'”

Nones now account for about one-quarter — 23 percent —  of American adults, up from 16 percent in 2007. But their growth is not the whole story behind the numbers.

In the current poll, Protestants and Catholics were also polled, and 45 percent of them agree that God is not necessary for personal morality, up from 42 percent in 2011.

Even white evangelicals, who traditionally believe a relationship with God is crucial to morality, have budged. In 2011, one quarter of them (26 percent) said it was possible to be good without God, while now almost a third (32 percent) say so.

“To be sure, most white evangelicals still say belief in God is necessary for morality,” Smith writes. “But the share who say belief in God is a necessary underpinning of being moral has declined from 72 percent to 65 percent in just six years.”

The poll’s findings were published Monday (Oct. 16), four days before “Openly Secular Day” on Oct. 20, an event promoted by multiple organizations of atheists, humanists, agnostics and other secular individuals to highlight their lack of religious beliefs.

Hemant Mehta, who wrote about the poll on his Friendly Atheist blog, attributes the bump to the “coming out” of nonreligious people, including celebrities and friends and family members.

“It’s getting to the point where even devoutly religious people know somebody who’s an atheist,” he said in an email.

“Just as we saw with the LGBTQ movement, it becomes a lot harder for religious people to demonize us when they know us, and knowing us poses a direct challenge to the absurd idea that people can’t be good without God.”

http://www.christianheadlines.com/blog/good-without-god-more-americans-say-amen-to-that.html
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« Reply #345 on: February 20, 2018, 12:42:44 am »

Toledo pastor, family charged with aggravated robbery

A downtown Toledo pastor and his family are accused of robbing a Sunday school teacher at the church over the weekend.

St. Paul’s AME Zion Church Pastor Anthony Morris, 49, along with his wife, Zelda Morris, 46, and 19-year-old daughter Kamali Morris, are each charged with aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon, a first-degree felony.

Nickema Turner, 39, of Maumee was teaching Sunday school at the church, 954 Belmont Ave., when the younger woman grabbed her by the hair, according to a Toledo police report.

Mrs. Morris then began punching Ms. Turner, police said. The pastor also pushed Ms. Turner to the ground, according to the police report.

During the assault, Mrs. Morris is accused of dumping items from Ms. Turner’s purse and taking them.

Ms. Turner attempted to recover her belongings when Mr. Morris allegedly pulled out a gun and pointed it at her, police said. The woman told police the pastor threatened to kill her.

Two prescription bottles, a Taser, and a cell phone were taken from Ms. Turner’s purse, according to the police report. The cell phone was recovered, but the glass was broken.

The Morris family, who reside in the 3000 block of Evergreen Road, fled the church before police arrived. The couple have been arrested, though the daughter has yet to be located, according to Toledo police.

Ms. Turner was treated at the scene by Toledo Fire and Rescue crews. Ms. Turner and independent witnesses verified the information to police detectives.

The Blade attempted to reach Ms. Turner.

http://www.toledoblade.com/Police-Fire/2018/02/19/Warrants-issued-for-pastor-family-for-aggravated-robbery.html
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« Reply #346 on: June 07, 2018, 07:11:24 pm »

UMC Minnesota Conference Edited 'Father' Out of the Apostles’ Creed

At a recent multi-day conference, the Minnesota Conference of the United Methodist Church used an edited version of the Apostles’ Creed which removed a reference to God as “Father.” When the conference handed out liturgical folders for a worship service, Rev. Keith Mcilwain noticed the change to the historic creed.

Throughout Christian history, churches have recited the creed, which confesses, “I believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth. The edited version read, “I believe in God, the Creator Almighty, creator of heaven and earth.”

Rev. Mcilwain, the pastor of Slippery Rock United Methodist Church, snapped a photo of the edited creed and posted it on Twitter. He told the Christian Post that he obtained a copy of the liturgy from a friend who attended the service.

This move by the Minnesota Conference comes as many denominations are rethinking the way they refer to God, seeing the language as too restrictive. The UMC has been engaged in a discussion about how to use more gender-inclusive language since the 1980’s.

Mcilwain expressed disbelief that this major change to the creed took place with no debate or discussion. He told the Christian Post, "No United Methodist individual or body has the authority to edit those creeds which were formulated by the early Church and have helped define orthodox Christianity for the better part of 2000 years.”

Mcilwain sees this move as driving a deeper wedge into an already splintering denomination. The church has been embroiled in difficult debates for the last few years over marriage, gender, and sexuality. "To see the creed abused in this way is extraordinarily disheartening, further distances our already troubled denomination from the Church Universal, exacerbates already existing tensions within the Church, and harms those affirming the creed by failing to faithfully teach and uphold one of the core essential doctrines of the Christian faith — the Doctrine of the Holy Trinity."

He further added that this stands as a major undermining of traditional Methodist doctrine. "All ordained United Methodist clergy promise to faithfully uphold and teach the Doctrine of the Holy Trinity, which is shared and defined in Article 1 of our Articles of Religion; I fear that this edited creed represents a failure to be faithful to what The United Methodist Church believes."

The Christian Post reached out to the Minnesota Conference for comment, but they have not yet responded.

https://www.christianheadlines.com/contributors/scott-slayton/umc-minnesota-conference-edited-father-out-of-the-apostles-creed.html
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