Christian Era |OT| W.W.J.D

My main counter to the idea that the senior pastor of a church has to be male because he has to be a stand-in for Christ is that, well... to me, disallowing a woman to fulfill that role is about equivalent to disallowing someone with a physical disability from taking that role. Christ was of whole body, after all. Why is His maleness a non-negotiable quantity in those who seek to be a reflection of Christ while other physical qualities are rightly understood to be immaterial to the position? Why can only a man properly reflect Christ in this role?

Furthermore: to my knowledge, most senior pastors are flawed, sometimes deeply flawed, individuals like anybody else. Christ was anything but flawed-- and I'd hazard a guess to say that a hypothetical woman who was without sin in the same way Christ was would have more in common with Him than, say, you or I do. If we're going to talk about a reflection of Christ, I figure the moral element, the element of day-to-day action, matters more than gender.

Anyways, just my two cents.
 
I am sad that this thread is so slow.

It's the least contentious place I've encountered among Christians on the internet.

Makes me wonder if the so much of the Body of Christ thrives on conflict, on imperfection.

I recently sat in on a charity dinner for the Interfaith Council of Justice and Peace. Though I don't agree with everything, I thought it was...nice.
 
I'm actually out on vacation with the family in Florida right now, so that's a major part of why I've been AFK. Conflict is part or human nature, but I do believe that conflict in the body has a tendency to get in the way of the mission. What impresss me about this place is how diverse the viewpoints are while remaining respectful of one another. I love that we can actually do that on the web, it's such a rarity to find that.
 
Man, I wish Catholic Priests could marry. I really want to be one, but that's such a huge obstacle.

I guess I have another year at my current job to decide. I can definitely make the sacrifice. I just... don't want to.

I really do feel like it's my calling, though.
 
Man, I wish Catholic Priests could marry. I really want to be one, but that's such a huge obstacle.

I guess I have another year at my current job to decide. I can definitely make the sacrifice. I just... don't want to.

I really do feel like it's my calling, though.
I understand where the tradition of celibacy comes from in the Catholic church.

And yet it is still unfathomable to me.
 
It's probably staggeringly unhealthy to be a priest and stay celibate like that. Isn't there something like non-denominational priesthood or something that could be a better fit?

Or... friars. Do they still do friars?
 
I'm actually out on vacation with the family in Florida right now, so that's a major part of why I've been AFK. Conflict is part or human nature, but I do believe that conflict in the body has a tendency to get in the way of the mission. What impresss me about this place is how diverse the viewpoints are while remaining respectful of one another. I love that we can actually do that on the web, it's such a rarity to find that.
Usually when i see a religion discussion online it mostly end up in petty arguments that brings nothing worth to anyone. So i have to agree with you on this.

Even though this thread is usually slow, it is still far better than the majority of "popular" places because of this.
 
I'm not gonna change my denomination just to get around something like that. Beliefs aren't like picking out fruit at the grocery store. I disagree with the need to remain celibate, but I agree with everything else about the Catholic faith, so...

It stems from a time when they didn't want priests to push their sons to be priests. It's about time we accepted married men and women into the priesthood. It might, you know, solve the massive shortage of priests problem
 
Usually when i see a religion discussion online it mostly end up in petty arguments that brings nothing worth to anyone. So i have to agree with you on this.

Even though this thread is usually slow, it is still far better than the majority of "popular" places because of this.
Agreed.

I'm sad that it's slower here but I rejoice that we're not consumed with didacticism.

At any rate, when I "sounded off," people replied, so that's encouraging. Whenever one of us has something to say, we all get alerted that someone has posted.

My church is looking for board members. I'm considering applying.

I'm already part of the pastoral advisory committee, which is basically a group where the pastor can submit his ideas to certain congregants for feedback before he goes to the board with them to vote.

Did I mention I was promoted to the board at Geeks Under Grace? Also, praise the Lord, but two writers have contacted me out of the blue to join my team. I am sad that one was running his own website, but had to stop for reasons that have not (yet) been disclosed, but he's an excellent writer, so I was not sad at all, lol! Another was running their own blog, and wants to be part of a larger team.

I unfortunately lost one person on my team. To keep a long story short, they were not being completely honest with the content found in a certain popular JRPG, as they disagreed with the dominant interpretation of scripture on the matter. We (that is, GUG and this writer) parted ways amicably, but I still lament the loss, because this person was talented--not necessarily the best writer, but they oftentimes thought outside of the box when submitting articles, which the church desperately needs (rather than regurgitating stuff that we've already heard before, which is why I do not find devotionals edifying).

The two that I will acquire will "make up" for the one loss on paper and production, but we still took a hit in diversity.

I think the next time a woman applies, I'll take her on my team regardless of her qualifications and train her to become better at writing. The only woman on my team of currently 13 has a Ph.D., but English isn't her first language, so I took her on as a developmental project. Over the past year, she has picked up on translating Chinese idioms to English very well. Her stuff used to be such that one might wonder if they knew how to write at all. Now, I hardly have to touch her submissions. I am proud!
 
That's really cool, Phoenix RISING! Glad to hear that things are going well. I think you should apply to your church's board. What I've seen of your character here has always been positive and... I dunno, it just feels like a good idea to me. Is GUG looking for more writers/contributors than the two that have applied, by the way?
 
I think part of the reason it can be slow in this thread is quite a bit of thought seems to get put into many of the posts, i.e. they are lengthy and dense. There's not a lot of one-word responses or gifs.

SolVanderlyn , can you educate me a bit? Why is that catholic priests have to remain celibate? Who decides that? (I know very little about the Catholic church.)
 
Agreed.

I'm sad that it's slower here but I rejoice that we're not consumed with didacticism.

At any rate, when I "sounded off," people replied, so that's encouraging. Whenever one of us has something to say, we all get alerted that someone has posted.

My church is looking for board members. I'm considering applying.

I'm already part of the pastoral advisory committee, which is basically a group where the pastor can submit his ideas to certain congregants for feedback before he goes to the board with them to vote.

Did I mention I was promoted to the board at Geeks Under Grace? Also, praise the Lord, but two writers have contacted me out of the blue to join my team. I am sad that one was running his own website, but had to stop for reasons that have not (yet) been disclosed, but he's an excellent writer, so I was not sad at all, lol! Another was running their own blog, and wants to be part of a larger team.

I unfortunately lost one person on my team. To keep a long story short, they were not being completely honest with the content found in a certain popular JRPG, as they disagreed with the dominant interpretation of scripture on the matter. We (that is, GUG and this writer) parted ways amicably, but I still lament the loss, because this person was talented--not necessarily the best writer, but they oftentimes thought outside of the box when submitting articles, which the church desperately needs (rather than regurgitating stuff that we've already heard before, which is why I do not find devotionals edifying).

The two that I will acquire will "make up" for the one loss on paper and production, but we still took a hit in diversity.

I think the next time a woman applies, I'll take her on my team regardless of her qualifications and train her to become better at writing. The only woman on my team of currently 13 has a Ph.D., but English isn't her first language, so I took her on as a developmental project. Over the past year, she has picked up on translating Chinese idioms to English very well. Her stuff used to be such that one might wonder if they knew how to write at all. Now, I hardly have to touch her submissions. I am proud!
Congratulations on your promotion! I dont know what it means to join a church board, but if it will give you a better position to help others perhaps it is worth a shot?


I think part of the reason it can be slow in this thread is quite a bit of thought seems to get put into many of the posts, i.e. they are lengthy and dense. There's not a lot of one-word responses or gifs.

SolVanderlyn , can you educate me a bit? Why is that catholic priests have to remain celibate? Who decides that? (I know very little about the Catholic church.)
At least for me this is true, i always reflect far more before making a post here then on the gaming side for example. I also think that another reason this thread is kinda slow is because the vast majority on this forum are not christians, in fact a lot of them despise us. So there is just very few of us here.
 
I think part of it is that the Hangouts system is itself a bit weird. There's a directory, but unless you see the thread, good luck.

Also, Ivellios: I also would say most posters here don't hate or despise us-- not even a lot of them. Organized religion as a whole? Definitely quite a few, but then again I'm not exactly keen on what it's become these days. Plenty of people think that it's some kind of gold star that they're not religious, I'll give you that. And plenty of people hate political positions that are frequently held by Christians. But those are hardly universal. Hate is... never really great, but what I mean to say is I don't really think we're persecuted here or would be if the majority of the world reflected ERA's proclivities. At least, I hope not.
 
Still, you'd think there'd still be more than like 10 of us. I mean, there are Billions of Christians in the world, lol.
It is as Deffers said, many dont even know this thread exists because it is almost never on the first page. I had no idea it existed as well because of this, until one day while i was browsing i found it.

I think part of it is that the Hangouts system is itself a bit weird. There's a directory, but unless you see the thread, good luck.

Also, Ivellios: I also would say most posters here don't hate or despise us-- not even a lot of them. Organized religion as a whole? Definitely quite a few, but then again I'm not exactly keen on what it's become these days. Plenty of people think that it's some kind of gold star that they're not religious, I'll give you that. And plenty of people hate political positions that are frequently held by Christians. But those are hardly universal. Hate is... never really great, but what I mean to say is I don't really think we're persecuted here or would be if the majority of the world reflected ERA's proclivities. At least, I hope not.
I used to believe that, but read carefully any religious thread on off topic, it is full of hatred and disrespect towards christians. And as you said there is also the people who thinks they are brilliant and smart just because they are atheists who mocks christians.

I have atheists friends who are good people and dont go attacking other people religions just because they dont believe it, same as i dont try to shovel my religion down their throats. We even talk about the subject in a completely friendly manner. Its called mutual respect.

In this forum finding people like that (who posts on these thread anyway) is very rare.

You say we are not persecuted here, while i agree persecuted is a strong word and it does not happen, try to post in a religious thread, identify yourself as a christian and disagree with the mob on something. After you get dogpiled and the ban is over you can post the results.

Uh reading my post it sounds agressive, but its really not, i just dont know how to type this and express what i want to say in another manner, sorry.
 
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I used to believe that, but read carefully any religious thread on off topic, it is full of hatred and disrespect towards christians. And as you said there is also the people who thinks they are brilliant and smart just because they are atheists who mocks christians.

I have atheists friends who are good people and dont go attacking other people religions just because they dont believe it, same as i dont try to shovel my religion down their throats. We even talk about the subject in a completely friendly manner. Its called mutual respect.

In this forum finding people like that (who posts on these thread anyway) is very rare.
Oh, the mockery is definitely real and definitely uncomfortable. Particularly those who like to use blasphemous comments for it. You can imagine how well I deal with that. But I don't think there's real, genuine hatred there-- just people with a bone to pick with religion in general and the same Christians we end up having a problem with as well in particular. The people involved have to interact with religious people everyday, and it's gonna be a precious few of them who hold that attitude to the religious people in their lives day-to-day. I'd guess that they feel stifled in their own opinion of religion in their regular lives and use the Internet to cut loose. I can definitely tell that more than a few irreligious people think less of me for holding my position-- and I also know what you mean by having atheist friends that actually value and respect my religion.

The main reason I even speak in the defense of these people is that in a lot of the circles we frequently criticize here, the prevailing narrative is that in countries like the United States there is major persecution against Christians by atheistic elites. We live in a world where Christians are, to this day, jailed for their beliefs and even killed as well. Iran for the former, Syria for the latter. Pointedly, not here. I know you aren't like that, lemme be clear; but it's precisely because the nature of these disrespectful comments and responses are so galling and irritating that I try to maintain a perspective on what these people are probably actually like in their day. Because in the first world, at least, the narrative of Christian persecution seems to be more reflective of pursuing certain political goals than it is reflective of the extent of the danger we're in. I sometimes wonder if these people aren't primarily exposed to fundamentalist expressions of religion, since it's frequently been the case that actively discussing my beliefs with them can soften their positions a lot.

I get that the constant nature of disrespectful comments towards Christianity can be pretty deeply hurtful and discouraging. But believing that we are hated by the people around us has an effect on the way we interact with others, so I always feel it's important to be very careful and mindful about when I decide someone genuinely hates me.
 
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Oh, the mockery is definitely real and definitely uncomfortable. Particularly those who like to use blasphemous comments for it. You can imagine how well I deal with that. But I don't think there's real, genuine hatred there-- just people with a bone to pick with religion in general and the same Christians we end up having a problem with as well in particular. The people involved have to interact with religious people everyday, and it's gonna be a precious few of them who hold that attitude to the religious people in their lives day-to-day. I'd guess that they feel stifled in their own opinion of religion in their regular lives and use the Internet to cut loose. I can definitely tell that more than a few irreligious people think less of me for holding my position-- and I also know what you mean by having atheist friends that actually value and respect my religion.

The main reason I even speak in the defense of these people is that in a lot of the circles we frequently criticize here, the prevailing narrative is that in countries like the United States there is major persecution against Christians by atheistic elites. We live in a world where Christians are, to this day, jailed for their beliefs and even killed as well. Iran for the former, Syria for the latter. Pointedly, not here. I know you aren't like that, lemme be clear; but it's precisely because the nature of these disrespectful comments and responses are so galling and irritating that I try to maintain a perspective on what these people are probably actually like in their day. Because in the first world, at least, the narrative of Christian persecution seems to be more reflective of pursuing certain political goals than it is reflective of the extent of the danger we're in. I sometimes wonder if these people aren't primarily exposed to fundamentalist expressions of religion, since it's frequently been the case that actively discussing my beliefs with them can bring with them.

I get that the constant nature of disrespectful comments towards Christianity can be pretty deeply hurtful and discouraging. But believing that we are hated by the people around us has an effect on the way we interact with others, so I always feel it's important to be very careful and mindful about when I decide someone genuinely hates me.
Man, your posts are very wise and i mean that. I agree hatred is not the right word (to the majority of them anyway), and maybe most of them only met christians institutions and people who only judge others, not showing love or compassion, churches extorting members for money, and so on. I believe my first or second post in this thread was based on this argument if i recall. But even though i agree with you, i still stand firm in my belief that many of them cross the line in mocking christians. Just because i dont agree with someone point of view, does not give me the right to say whatever i want to offend them. Especially on a forum where the gold standard is to respect everyone in sexual choice, color, etc (which i admire). I just believe christians should be respected as well.

Im not from the United States, and even though your argument was not adressed directly to me, i just want to make clear that i dont believe in the slightest that christians are persecuted in religious free countries, on the contrary i think some of the bigger religious institutions (at least on my country) end up "persecuting" others.

And im glad you touched the subject of the true persecuted christians, on countries where being a christian is against the law, as they are the people who i admire the most in the world, because they truly give everything they have for Christ. Most donations i ever made in my life was toward organizations who help these christians and their families.
 
Man, your posts are very wise and i mean that. I agree hatred is not the right word (to the majority of them anyway), and maybe most of them only met christians institutions and people who only judge others, not showing love or compassion, churches extorting members for money, and so on. I believe my first or second post in this thread was based on this argument if i recall. But even though i agree with you, i still stand firm in my belief that many of them cross the line in mocking christians. Just because i dont agree with someone point of view, does not give me the right to say whatever i want to offend them. Especially on a forum where the gold standard is to respect everyone in sexual choice, color, etc (which i admire). I just believe christians should be respected as well.

Im not from the United States, and even though your argument was not adressed directly to me, i just want to make clear that i dont believe in the slightest that christians are persecuted in religious free countries, on the contrary i think some of the bigger religious institutions (at least on my country) end up "persecuting" others.

And im glad you touched the subject of the true persecuted christians, on countries where being a christian is against the law, as they are the people who i admire the most in the world, because they truly give everything they have for Christ. Most donations i ever made in my life was toward organizations who help these christians and their families.
Thanks! I really appreciate your kind comments. I do agree that a line is crossed-- even if the people we're discussing are in a point in their lives where they feel they have to vent, the comments can end up being hurtful, have a chilling effect on discourse and, furthermore, have issues with playing into the hands of the aforesaid special interests. Given that, I'd actually propose we should act to see if we can't get better norms established for that kind of stuff. I think we might want to consider approaching mods as a group the next time a thread with that kind of language comes up and see if maybe we can't, yunno, discuss boundaries that we feel should be established.

I feel the same way that you do about Christians who suffer persecution for their belief. They really are a model to us all. There is no greater love than to lay down your life for your friend, and whoever believes in Christ is a friend to Him. It's a laudable and complex sacrifice that embodies the full potential of Christianity, because it's about preserving the truth of those ideals as a service to the world.
 
I think the next time a woman applies, I'll take her on my team regardless of her qualifications and train her to become better at writing. The only woman on my team of currently 13 has a Ph.D., but English isn't her first language, so I took her on as a developmental project. Over the past year, she has picked up on translating Chinese idioms to English very well. Her stuff used to be such that one might wonder if they knew how to write at all. Now, I hardly have to touch her submissions. I am proud!
I'll be praying that you find the right gal to join your staff Phoenix, I do believe that your desire to widen your GUG's perspectives will be rewarded.

At the very least you'll be able to pour into someone and help give them a stronger voice. I'm also speaking as someone that's technically a development project at their own workplace, and it's worked out great so far.

As far as how the main board treats Christians, I actually do sense a lot of hate in sentiments, but they tend to be aimed at concepts, Christ, and God rather than the individual who is espousing those beliefs. There are insults lobbed around, sure, but the word is pretty clear that we will have to get used to that.

The Apostle John tells us in 1 John 3:13 in a passage concerning loving one another that we should not be surprised that the world hates us. It echoes the words of Christ in John 15:18 - 27. The verses that stand out to me in particular are 18 & 19.

"If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.
John 15:18‭-‬19 ESV

Jesus is divisive, let's not kid ourselves here. I do believe in being respectful, but I never assume that it is something that I will receive back. That's part of turning the other cheek. Not that we should be doormats, but that we should know and understand that by following Christ we choose the harder road because of who he is and how counter-cultural his ways actually are.

I'd like to take this opportunity challenge each of us to take some time to dwell on both John 15 and 1 John 3 and see how we can live these out in both our everyday lives and as we post on this board. I believe that we could see a lot of growth from just taking these two chapters in.
 
John 15 dwells on my mind a lot. I understand that Christians, generally speaking, were told by Jesus they were going to be hated. The main thing is... they did get hated and are hated to this day. The persecution of Christians in the past and present, though, tends to dwarf anything anybody's even said they wished they could do to me. Jesus is definitely divisive-- even within a social microcosm, you don't notice it at first, but trying to live up to Christian principles can mean a lot of weird faux pas. It's always made me wonder if I'm doing my "job," so to speak, properly, because I live in a place where I feel confident my beliefs will be looked at with respect.

I would argue I don't see much hatred of Christ or God, at least on ERA (though I have definitely seen the latter on occasion)-- after all, isn't one of the most widely-used criticisms against any given Christian about how well they do or do not live up to the principles of Christ? People wouldn't criticize Christians for failing to live up to Christ's teachings if they believed Christ's teachings had no value. Gandhi had that whole quote about Christians being so unlike Christ-- that's the sentiment that I see echoed most often. Very few people have much to speak against the commandments Jesus gave His flock. They're good commandments to pretty much everyone! Once you get past the gospels and Acts you do tend to see more pushback against particular passages. But the people who raise those objections obviously tend to have read the Bible to begin with-- fewer and farther between.
 
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I'll be praying that you find the right gal to join your staff Phoenix, I do believe that your desire to widen your GUG's perspectives will be rewarded.

At the very least you'll be able to pour into someone and help give them a stronger voice. I'm also speaking as someone that's technically a development project at their own workplace, and it's worked out great so far.

As far as how the main board treats Christians, I actually do sense a lot of hate in sentiments, but they tend to be aimed at concepts, Christ, and God rather than the individual who is espousing those beliefs. There are insults lobbed around, sure, but the word is pretty clear that we will have to get used to that.

The Apostle John tells us in 1 John 3:13 in a passage concerning loving one another that we should not be surprised that the world hates us. It echoes the words of Christ in John 15:18 - 27. The verses that stand out to me in particular are 18 & 19.

"If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.
John 15:18‭-‬19 ESV

Jesus is divisive, let's not kid ourselves here. I do believe in being respectful, but I never assume that it is something that I will receive back. That's part of turning the other cheek. Not that we should be doormats, but that we should know and understand that by following Christ we choose the harder road because of who he is and how counter-cultural his ways actually are.

I'd like to take this opportunity challenge each of us to take some time to dwell on both John 15 and 1 John 3 and see how we can live these out in both our everyday lives and as we post on this board. I believe that we could see a lot of growth from just taking these two chapters in.
Thanks for this, it has been a while since i read the bible (something i should do far more) but today i stopped to read these 2 chapters you mentioned, it was a very good reading and i will follow your advice. Though being truly hated at, to the point being arrested and worse, like Deffers said, is something we probably wont ever face like the persecuted christians the past and presents face.

John 15 dwells on my mind a lot. I understand that Christians, generally speaking, were told by Jesus they were going to be hated. The main thing is... they did get hated and are hated to this day. The persecution of Christians in the past and present, though, tends to dwarf anything anybody's even said they wished they could do to me. Jesus is definitely divisive-- even within a social microcosm, you don't notice it at first, but trying to live up to Christian principles can mean a lot of weird faux pas. It's always made me wonder if I'm doing my "job," so to speak, properly, because I live in a place where I feel confident my beliefs will be looked at with respect.

I would argue I don't see much hatred of Christ or God, at least on ERA (though I have definitely seen the latter on occasion)-- after all, isn't one of the most widely-used criticisms against any given Christian about how well they do or do not live up to the principles of Christ? People wouldn't criticize Christians for failing to live up to Christ's teachings if they believed Christ's teachings had no value. Gandhi had that whole quote about Christians being so unlike Christ-- that's the sentiment that I see echoed most often. Very few people have much to speak against the commandments Jesus gave His flock. They're good commandments to pretty much everyone! Once you get past the gospels and Acts you do tend to see more pushback against particular passages. But the people who raise those objections obviously tend to have read the Bible to begin with-- fewer and farther between.
Yes i agree in parts with you and i actually feel pretty sad about people who call themselves christians but do not act like one in their everyday lives, and when this board criticize these people i have no problems with it. Actually one of my favorite gospel books, written by Richard Wurmbrand, he writes something like this "There are people who are truly christians in this world and there are people who truly believe they are christians, but in reality they are not." and its so true, especially in these days.

And though i agree with you when you say the majority dont hate God or Christ, they do mock the bible and its words. Just read some comments against the bible, inappropriate memes and so on. The problem as i stated before is that some of these cross the line and disrespect others.

Also i have some good news, i went to the doctor on tuesday, and my health exams came out pretty good! he was even surprised at how much better they are! Im truly grateful for God taking care of me all my life like that, even though i kinda feel like i dont do anything useful for him.
 
I'm very happy to hear of your good health, Ivellios! One of God's greatest gifts to countless people is truly good health, and all the ways we get to experience the world because of it. Sometimes it's good just to be present and mindful of the simple ways we're blessed.

I will say, the discussion of people who fail to live up to the faith does, however, bring up a personal struggle that I have myself; non-judgment. I always feel it is worth mentioning in tandem with discussions about what it means to fail as a Christian because I believe that the stakes are pretty high. I've put my thoughts on the matter under a spoiler just so it doesn't get too unmanageable and doesn't cause too much of a derail.

Jesus, both in Matthew 7 (first verse, in fact) and Luke 6, exhorts us not to judge others, that we be not judged. In general, this is a big thing for Christ-- He asks of us to forgive our brothers and tells us, many times, that the measures we use on others will in turn be used on us. Furthermore, both of these exhortations in Matthew 7 and Luke 6 are followed up rebuking His audience for wishing to remove a speck from their brothers' eye while they have a plank (which in the original language was closer in meaning to a roofing timber IIRC) in their own eyes. I've mulled this passage over (or passages, but Matthew 7:1 in particular is the one that I read most often) a lot. To me, the meaning of the passage is clear but the endpoint of that journey remains somewhat opaque to me.

A pertinent example, as I have alluded to, is those forms of Christianity which I find to be problematic. Take, for example, the prosperity gospel. I tend to see prosperity gospel in all of its forms as a pernicious distortion of Scripture. I'm pretty steadfast in that opinion, on the whole. But I find myself uncomfortable saying, for example, calling a prosperity preacher a bad person, even though there's clearly still a part of me that holds, say, the fact that one of 'em has three private jets and is looking for a fourth against them. In fact, I view it as a personal failing, and potentially a sin, that there's still a part of me that holds that judgment. I would argue that I'm wrong to even have that gut feeling.

Of course, prosperity gospel represents a logical extreme to an interpretation of Scripture that has, for the most part, helped me greatly. A less extreme position where this point of view has been helpful is that I think that branches of Christianity that promote predestination are generally inaccurate and may even harm the spiritual development of believers-- but that shouldn't affect my individual perception of any, say, Calvinist. I've met some pretty great Calvinists! Even a preacher who promotes that point of view, in my opinion, shouldn't be called bad even if listening in on a sermon of theirs would confirm my worst fears regarding their particular brand of predestination.

To me, the passages about not judging encompass a variety of issues. Seeing yourself as a moral authority, for example-- the parable about the timber in someone's eye is clearly meant to highlight the absurdity of moral hypocrisy and our own unmindfulness about our failures. Jesus' own command, in John, that he who is without sin should throw the first stone are an evident reflection of this as a general attitude taken beyond the specific case. The adulterous woman is spared because Christ reminds those present of their own failures in the eyes of God. To me, though, Jesus extends this exhortation beyond the literal legal case; His own followers, after all, would not be part of the Sanhedrin, say. Jesus was also talking about the internal judgments we hold about our brethren, in my opinion. Which implies that there is a genuine weight to holding the belief that someone doesn't live up to Christ's teachings-- with genuine spiritual consequences. To me, it's also a reminder that nobody is beyond redemption. For my part, I've done some pretty terrible things in my own past, even though I've pretty much always been nominally passionate about my religion. I have a hard time judging anybody because of that.

Anyways, this was a rather long digression, for which I apologize; but it is something that I feel I would be remiss in not bringing up after having guided the conversation towards a topic that predisposes itself to passing judgment on others.
 
I'm very happy to hear of your good health, Ivellios! One of God's greatest gifts to countless people is truly good health, and all the ways we get to experience the world because of it. Sometimes it's good just to be present and mindful of the simple ways we're blessed.

I will say, the discussion of people who fail to live up to the faith does, however, bring up a personal struggle that I have myself; non-judgment. I always feel it is worth mentioning in tandem with discussions about what it means to fail as a Christian because I believe that the stakes are pretty high. I've put my thoughts on the matter under a spoiler just so it doesn't get too unmanageable and doesn't cause too much of a derail.

Jesus, both in Matthew 7 (first verse, in fact) and Luke 6, exhorts us not to judge others, that we be not judged. In general, this is a big thing for Christ-- He asks of us to forgive our brothers and tells us, many times, that the measures we use on others will in turn be used on us. Furthermore, both of these exhortations in Matthew 7 and Luke 6 are followed up rebuking His audience for wishing to remove a speck from their brothers' eye while they have a plank (which in the original language was closer in meaning to a roofing timber IIRC) in their own eyes. I've mulled this passage over (or passages, but Matthew 7:1 in particular is the one that I read most often) a lot. To me, the meaning of the passage is clear but the endpoint of that journey remains somewhat opaque to me.

A pertinent example, as I have alluded to, is those forms of Christianity which I find to be problematic. Take, for example, the prosperity gospel. I tend to see prosperity gospel in all of its forms as a pernicious distortion of Scripture. I'm pretty steadfast in that opinion, on the whole. But I find myself uncomfortable saying, for example, calling a prosperity preacher a bad person, even though there's clearly still a part of me that holds, say, the fact that one of 'em has three private jets and is looking for a fourth against them. In fact, I view it as a personal failing, and potentially a sin, that there's still a part of me that holds that judgment. I would argue that I'm wrong to even have that gut feeling.

Of course, prosperity gospel represents a logical extreme to an interpretation of Scripture that has, for the most part, helped me greatly. A less extreme position where this point of view has been helpful is that I think that branches of Christianity that promote predestination are generally inaccurate and may even harm the spiritual development of believers-- but that shouldn't affect my individual perception of any, say, Calvinist. I've met some pretty great Calvinists! Even a preacher who promotes that point of view, in my opinion, shouldn't be called bad even if listening in on a sermon of theirs would confirm my worst fears regarding their particular brand of predestination.

To me, the passages about not judging encompass a variety of issues. Seeing yourself as a moral authority, for example-- the parable about the timber in someone's eye is clearly meant to highlight the absurdity of moral hypocrisy and our own unmindfulness about our failures. Jesus' own command, in John, that he who is without sin should throw the first stone are an evident reflection of this as a general attitude taken beyond the specific case. The adulterous woman is spared because Christ reminds those present of their own failures in the eyes of God. To me, though, Jesus extends this exhortation beyond the literal legal case; His own followers, after all, would not be part of the Sanhedrin, say. Jesus was also talking about the internal judgments we hold about our brethren, in my opinion. Which implies that there is a genuine weight to holding the belief that someone doesn't live up to Christ's teachings-- with genuine spiritual consequences. To me, it's also a reminder that nobody is beyond redemption. For my part, I've done some pretty terrible things in my own past, even though I've pretty much always been nominally passionate about my religion. I have a hard time judging anybody because of that.

Anyways, this was a rather long digression, for which I apologize; but it is something that I feel I would be remiss in not bringing up after having guided the conversation towards a topic that predisposes itself to passing judgment on others.
I read your entire post, even the spoiler. Reading my post again it seemed like i was judging others, but that is far from what i meant. In fact what i tried to say is precisely how some christians act like mighty beings superior to everyone else, judging every single action of others.

I shall name one example, a lesbian girl died assassinated here in my country and you know what? some "christians" said that the price of sin is death, judging her on the sole fact that she was lesbian, so she deserved to die. Now im not juding these persons, but from everything i learned, from others and from my own studies that these people are not true christians, because christianity is about loving and compassion, not jugdement. I could name a few similar examples but i think i made my point very clear. Again this is not judgement, its knowing what is right according to what the Bible teaches us.

Now for the prosperity church and "judging" its preachers. It is the same thing, just read the gospels about how Jesus treat the prostitutes, the sinners, the sick and so on. It is full of love, compassion and forgiveness towards them. Now compare how he speaks about the majority pharisees. He warn us time and time again not to follow their deeds, how they are corrupt and only care about their outward appearance, because inside they are completely rotten.

Now understand one thing, you are not judging these prosperity church preachers, you are only doing what Jesus warned us: To not follow their path, if you dont do that you risk you yourself becoming like them. This is why you can also read in the bible how we should be careful of false leaders who will trick many.

This is precisely what i meant when i said about "non true christians" as in christians, both leaders and members, who only judge others and care about their external appearance towards the world, thinking themselves better then everyone else, while ignoring the word of God in the bible.

What im trying my best to say here is, that there is a very clear difference between judging others, as in believing yourself to being superior to them, and protecting yourself from following a wrong path, as in not be "seduced" by the influence of others who are christians in name only. I believe the right way to do that is always reading the bible, learn from the right leaders, and pray for wisdow.

As for your internal struggle, i think we all did or do bad things we regret, but as long as you are trying to change for the better and ask for forgiveness to God, them i believe in the Bible when it says that we are forgiven because of what Jesus did for us, otherwise not every single one of us would deserve to be saved by our deeds alone.
 
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Let me be clear, by the way; I didn't think you were being judgmental, not directly. You didn't name anybody and there's nothing wrong at all with pointing out the obvious in that not everyone who claims to follow Jesus does so. It's just that the subject matter lends itself to that kind of thinking so it's worth bringing up lest we forget, dunno?

I agree that avoiding temptation is important-- and that it's OK to take a hardline stance against some practices. It's just that I feel the most effective way to do that is focusing on the practice rather than the individual. In any case, scenarios like the one you discussed aren't something I'd think less of anybody for reacting strongly to. It's important to care about everyone's life, after all.

Lastly, You're definitely right: we all still remain in anticipation and need of the mercy of Christ. Cognizance of that fact will forever remain more important than particular implementations of spiritual discipline.
 
SO that one thread about whether you should redo or go to heaven sure did make me realize that a lot of people have... strange ideas about God and heaven. The weird ideas about God thing doesn't surprise me-- there's enough pop philosophy and pop culture about divine tyranny, for some reason, that it doesn't surprise me. It's typically reflective of extremely repressive religious upbringings, IMO, so that makes sense. The part where people genuinely can't conceive of a pleasant eternity at all threw me for a bit of a loop, though. People can conceive of eternal anguish pretty easily. Eternal joy? No dice.

I mean, I have a weird time describing heaven, or the world to come, or both or neither-- the time of the Resurrection, to be brief-- because what I think it will be is pretty esoteric. Sometimes, though, I find it strange that people who tend to have a clear picture of how big the Universe is have such a small conception of its Creator. As Christians, we believe and forward the idea that there is a Being who basically brought all that exists into being from nothing. We have a better understanding than we ever did of how overpoweringly, cosmically vast that creation itself is-- and by that same understanding we have to conclude that the majesty it shows is a shadow of the majesty of the One who made it. Lesser by comparison by necessity. Even if someone doesn't believe, that should make sense. So how bleak is it that most people can only seem to imagine God as some dude? Heaven as some really nice, like... I dunno, lounge? I've mentioned before that I've done a lot of reading on other religions. I think I'll always appreciate Kaballah, Jewish mysticism, because as a philosophy it delves into just how indescribably majestic God is-- greater than Infinity, creator of number and letter and thus concept and ontology. Within this view, the Resurrection is a change on a fundamental level that defies description because it by definition introduces new concepts to reality. And maybe that's not true-- I make no claims as to the canonical status of even the oldest manuscripts of Kaballah. But it asks of people to use all of their faculties to try and conceive of merely God's own majesty, not even God Himself-- and shows how much greater God is than even this. That much, we know to be true.

So I guess it just frustrates me to see applying so little imagination to what God could show us or give us or share with us in the world to come. I thought it would bring up interesting discussion to talk through that frustration so I posted here-- it's pretty related to our usual topics of discussion, I figured.
 
Still, you'd think there'd still be more than like 10 of us. I mean, there are Billions of Christians in the world, lol.
Horses for courses. There's something about the overall culture of this community that conflicts with being a Christian. We are just the exception. I am scared expressing my honest opinions on certain topics even within this thread, mainly because we are in the minority.

Just consider yourself blessed that we can have this thread, because there' s no way it would have existed in the other place.

I hope your ban isn't for too long, brother.
I think part of the reason it can be slow in this thread is quite a bit of thought seems to get put into many of the posts, i.e. they are lengthy and dense. There's not a lot of one-word responses or gifs.

SolVanderlyn , can you educate me a bit? Why is that catholic priests have to remain celibate? Who decides that? (I know very little about the Catholic church.)
I don't want to insult any of my Catholic brothers, but the whole celibacy thing in the Catholic Church is condemned by the Orthodox church (which technically precedes it) because you are holding priests to a higher standard than the Apostles and Saints of their own Church many of whom were married.
 
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ShadowSwordmaster

Community Resetter
Member
SO that one thread about whether you should redo or go to heaven sure did make me realize that a lot of people have... strange ideas about God and heaven. The weird ideas about God thing doesn't surprise me-- there's enough pop philosophy and pop culture about divine tyranny, for some reason, that it doesn't surprise me. It's typically reflective of extremely repressive religious upbringings, IMO, so that makes sense. The part where people genuinely can't conceive of a pleasant eternity at all threw me for a bit of a loop, though. People can conceive of eternal anguish pretty easily. Eternal joy? No dice.

I mean, I have a weird time describing heaven, or the world to come, or both or neither-- the time of the Resurrection, to be brief-- because what I think it will be is pretty esoteric. Sometimes, though, I find it strange that people who tend to have a clear picture of how big the Universe is have such a small conception of its Creator. As Christians, we believe and forward the idea that there is a Being who basically brought all that exists into being from nothing. We have a better understanding than we ever did of how overpoweringly, cosmically vast that creation itself is-- and by that same understanding we have to conclude that the majesty it shows is a shadow of the majesty of the One who made it. Lesser by comparison by necessity. Even if someone doesn't believe, that should make sense. So how bleak is it that most people can only seem to imagine God as some dude? Heaven as some really nice, like... I dunno, lounge? I've mentioned before that I've done a lot of reading on other religions. I think I'll always appreciate Kaballah, Jewish mysticism, because as a philosophy it delves into just how indescribably majestic God is-- greater than Infinity, creator of number and letter and thus concept and ontology. Within this view, the Resurrection is a change on a fundamental level that defies description because it by definition introduces new concepts to reality. And maybe that's not true-- I make no claims as to the canonical status of even the oldest manuscripts of Kaballah. But it asks of people to use all of their faculties to try and conceive of merely God's own majesty, not even God Himself-- and shows how much greater God is than even this. That much, we know to be true.

So I guess it just frustrates me to see applying so little imagination to what God could show us or give us or share with us in the world to come. I thought it would bring up interesting discussion to talk through that frustration so I posted here-- it's pretty related to our usual topics of discussion, I figured.
I would need to think about this. Thank you for posting this.
 
SO that one thread about whether you should redo or go to heaven sure did make me realize that a lot of people have... strange ideas about God and heaven. The weird ideas about God thing doesn't surprise me-- there's enough pop philosophy and pop culture about divine tyranny, for some reason, that it doesn't surprise me. It's typically reflective of extremely repressive religious upbringings, IMO, so that makes sense. The part where people genuinely can't conceive of a pleasant eternity at all threw me for a bit of a loop, though. People can conceive of eternal anguish pretty easily. Eternal joy? No dice.

I mean, I have a weird time describing heaven, or the world to come, or both or neither-- the time of the Resurrection, to be brief-- because what I think it will be is pretty esoteric. Sometimes, though, I find it strange that people who tend to have a clear picture of how big the Universe is have such a small conception of its Creator. As Christians, we believe and forward the idea that there is a Being who basically brought all that exists into being from nothing. We have a better understanding than we ever did of how overpoweringly, cosmically vast that creation itself is-- and by that same understanding we have to conclude that the majesty it shows is a shadow of the majesty of the One who made it. Lesser by comparison by necessity. Even if someone doesn't believe, that should make sense. So how bleak is it that most people can only seem to imagine God as some dude? Heaven as some really nice, like... I dunno, lounge? I've mentioned before that I've done a lot of reading on other religions. I think I'll always appreciate Kaballah, Jewish mysticism, because as a philosophy it delves into just how indescribably majestic God is-- greater than Infinity, creator of number and letter and thus concept and ontology. Within this view, the Resurrection is a change on a fundamental level that defies description because it by definition introduces new concepts to reality. And maybe that's not true-- I make no claims as to the canonical status of even the oldest manuscripts of Kaballah. But it asks of people to use all of their faculties to try and conceive of merely God's own majesty, not even God Himself-- and shows how much greater God is than even this. That much, we know to be true.

So I guess it just frustrates me to see applying so little imagination to what God could show us or give us or share with us in the world to come. I thought it would bring up interesting discussion to talk through that frustration so I posted here-- it's pretty related to our usual topics of discussion, I figured.
I find that people don't so much take issue with God or Jesus or the "wild" claims about who they are or what they do - they seem to be more influenced by the failures of the followers, historical sins of the church, division and hatred that is perpetuated by the modern church, hypocrisy, how science does or does not reconcile with religion, etc. It's all really unfortunate to realize this because I think it just means the church (collectively) isn't doing a good job of glorifying God in the way that the Bible commands us to.

On another note, I have this really vivid memory as a child where I tried really hard to grasp the idea of the size of the universe, how it was created, where the "end" of it was, how many stars there were, etc. It was actually such an overwhelming experience that I remember it almost bringing me to tears (as a child). That's one memory that reinforces the existence of God, to me. My mind simply couldn't grasp the idea that this "reality" is some sort of accident or by chance. The universe is God's canvas and his creativity is shown throughout. It's literally so big, expansive, and somewhat unexplained that it is a constant reminder of how small we are, as people.

Part of my frustration is that people seem to not want to accept this few of God because they think it takes away their agency or something. That "someone else" created them or is in charge of the universe is somehow insulting or they interpret it as someone else "owning" them. In the same breath, though, they will blame God for bad things or for not coming to their rescue. It's funny how we as humans will try to put God in this lose-lose situation where we refuse to accept his existance but will still blame him for not fixing what is wrong with the world.
 
I find that people don't so much take issue with God or Jesus or the "wild" claims about who they are or what they do - they seem to be more influenced by the failures of the followers, historical sins of the church, division and hatred that is perpetuated by the modern church, hypocrisy, how science does or does not reconcile with religion, etc. It's all really unfortunate to realize this because I think it just means the church (collectively) isn't doing a good job of glorifying God in the way that the Bible commands us to.

On another note, I have this really vivid memory as a child where I tried really hard to grasp the idea of the size of the universe, how it was created, where the "end" of it was, how many stars there were, etc. It was actually such an overwhelming experience that I remember it almost bringing me to tears (as a child). That's one memory that reinforces the existence of God, to me. My mind simply couldn't grasp the idea that this "reality" is some sort of accident or by chance. The universe is God's canvas and his creativity is shown throughout. It's literally so big, expansive, and somewhat unexplained that it is a constant reminder of how small we are, as people.

Part of my frustration is that people seem to not want to accept this few of God because they think it takes away their agency or something. That "someone else" created them or is in charge of the universe is somehow insulting or they interpret it as someone else "owning" them. In the same breath, though, they will blame God for bad things or for not coming to their rescue. It's funny how we as humans will try to put God in this lose-lose situation where we refuse to accept his existance but will still blame him for not fixing what is wrong with the world.
I will agree, as always, that the historical failings of the church (although, really, even with the nightmarish history of colonialism, we can really say "the failings of the church in the past two hundred years") are most likely why people have such bad feelings about religion these days.

I think people just don't deal well with the idea that they're going to be or ought to be judged in the afterlife outside of for things they perceive as egregious. That combined with the antiquated nature of some of the laws in the Old Testament and the people who insist that all of them are still in full effect (regardless of whether or not they even follow said laws) tends to result in people dismissing a bunch of stuff. We've already had pretty wide-ranging discussions about perceptions of men and women in Biblical times ourselves. It's almost like people got gaslighted by hardliners to genuinely believe that if God exists, He must be judgmental in the extreme like they say-- even though He makes His sun shine on the just and on the unjust and makes His rain fall on the wicked and on the good. It's a strange, but not wholly incomprehensible position. So often, the most hateful voices in the religion have found themselves magnified.

To me, by the way, the vastness of the Universe is itself... well, it's indicative of the nature of God, for sure, but I think one of my favorite musings on God is somewhat more fundamental than this. There's a book called the Sefer Yetzirah-- it's a highly obscure Kaballic manuscript of the Second Temple era that contemplates the nature of the divine, and forwards a particular cosmogony based on Hebrew lettering. One of the things that it asks though, is this; "before one, what do you count?" Now, to us, the answer would be "zero"-- but this manuscript was actually written prior to the establishment of the mathematical concept of zero (its latest possible dating is around when the concept of zero first appeared in India). What it is properly asking us is this-- what do you count before one exists in the Universe? See, God's creation was posited not to just extend to the material that we perceive and interact with, or the heavenly that lies beyond our grasp-- but also the conceptual. Before multiple things existed, God had to have laid the groundwork for multiplicity to be possible. Likewise, before unity was possible, God had to have laid the groundwork for unity to be possible. So before the concept of "one" existed, God existed. When we refer to the unity of God we are doing so to to denote His lack of division, and the reason is this: His being, His nature, predates number, because He made it possible for numbers to be. (Incidentally, this is part of why I find it weird that Jewish people object so strongly to the concept of the Trinity). When we realize this, we realize that the same is true of all possible connections or relations-- not just between matter, but between concepts. All forms which are possible are only possible because God defined them so. All possibilities are held in His hand for this reason-- and that web is by necessity larger than even everything that the universe is right now, because it encompasses everything that the Universe could be. It's on this basis that later philosophers would go on to propose that, maybe, in the Resurrection, the universe would change in a way that's deeper than anything it's even possible for us to conceive of, because it could be that in the age of reconciliation, God would introduce into the world new fundamental relationships that would... well, alter the world entirely. It's exciting to think about, inasmuch as it is even possible to think about.
 
Hey there,

Mainly lurk but wanted you guys to know there are more than 10 Christians on this site. Doubt I'm the only one who lurks ;-)
I'm not confident enough in my online presence to join in your dialogue as I've become used to (and wary of) the negativity that ensues the second our faith in Christ is shared.
It's a real blessing to read your thoughts and insights!

God bless!
 
Hey there,

Mainly lurk but wanted you guys to know there are more than 10 Christians on this site. Doubt I'm the only one who lurks ;-)
I'm not confident enough in my online presence to join in your dialogue as I've become used to (and wary of) the negativity that ensues the second our faith in Christ is shared.
It's a real blessing to read your thoughts and insights!

God bless!
Welcome Dunno!

I mostly lurk in this forum, i think this is the thread i have more posts if im not mistaken. But you can read this entire thread and at least here there is no negativity we may not always agree with one another but there is always respect in our conversations. And as you said this is rare when religion talk is involved (at least in my experience).

So feel free to post anything you want here, and this apply to others lurkers as well, since it would make this thread more lively as well.
 
This prayer really moves me:

O spotless, unstained, incorruptible, undefiled, pure Virgin, Lady Bride of God,
who through your wondrous birth-giving united God the Word with mankind,
and linked the fallen nature of our human race with the heavenly;
the only hope of the hopeless and the help of the persecuted;
the ready support of those who seek refuge in you, and the shelter of all the Christians:
do not despise me, the wretched sinner who have defiled myself with shameful thoughts and words and deeds,
and through negligence of thought have become slave to the pleasures of life.
But as the Mother of our compassionate God, and a friend of man, have compassion on me the sinner and prodigal,
and accept this prayer from my impure lips; and using your motherly standing,
entreat your Son and our Master and Lord to open unto me the depths of his loving goodness and,
overlooking my innumerable faults, to return me to repentance and make me a worthy servant of
his commandments. Stand by me forever; in this life as a merciful and compassionate and good and lovingly warm protector and helper,
by repulsing the assaults of the adversary and leading me toward salvation; and at the time of my death,
by embracing my miserable soul and driving far away from it the dark fares of the evil demons;
and at the awesome day of judgment by redeeming me from eternal hell,
and proclaiming me an heir of the ineffable glory of your Son and our God.
May I enjoy such fate, my Lady, most-holy Theotokos, through your intercession and protection;
through the grace and love for mankind of your only begotten Son, our Lord and God and Savior Jesus Christ.
To whom belong all glory, honor and worship, together with his beginningless Father, and the all holy and good and life giving Spirit,
now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen
 
Hey, guys! I went to the Families Belong Together march today, and it was... there was a pretty big religious presence! It was cool. There was not one, but two pastors (or a pastor and a reverend?) speaking for the crowd, and they pretty directly countered Session's use of Scripture to justify the splitting apart of families. It was really cool, particularly since they came together in part with an interfaith coalition and shared the stage with socialist and gay rights causes. I really enjoyed that. On the train ride back home I overheard someone in a DSA tee talking to someone in a DSA toque about how they met a third person outside of the whole socialist milieu through church and had come together for this. It was really inspiring!

They also did... kinda charge us with spreading the word about some of these resources, so I thought I should do that here since I don't, yunno... have a physical church where I can talk about these things. It turns out that here in Colorado we've got sanctuary churches, that provide space to undocumented immigrants being sought after by ICE and the like. Keeps them safe and cares for them. Our churches here in Colorado also created Casa de Paz-- House of Peace. It's a home across the street from our local detention center that's constantly stocked with food and cleaned so that anybody who has family they want to talk to has a place to stay gratis. They also do stuff with other immigration groups in the area, unsurprisingly. I guess I thought maybe we could sound off on the sorts of stuff the rest of our religious communities are involved in to help the people currently suffering from the present immigration crisis. And, to make sure that our fellow brethren from outside of the US can also participate, maybe that discussion could include what local churches are doing to help people involved in the refugee crises in Europe, say. Dunno. Just... this is what I thought I could do. Bring awareness to the sorts of church programs that do exist, or get people to maybe look at spaces that are lacking in their communities.
 
Hey friends, been quiet the past few months due to all the craziness at work, so I guess I'm due to check in. Things are going well with me. I found out recently that one of my teammates at work is not only a Christian but also a poster here on Era!

The way I found out the first one was pretty funny, we had a demo that required us to remote into his PC and he forgot to turn off his Spotify mix. Next thing you know, worship music is playing out of the conference screen. I had a feeling he was a believer based off of earlier conversations and his sweet spirit, but that was the moment that made it click. It's pretty rare to run into believers in my industry, especially on the technical side, so to have one of the guys I work closely with being a Christian is a real blessing.

Other than that, I've been doing more volunteering with media at Church (we're studying Colossians right now), will be back to playing guitar this Sunday, and am in the process of moving. So is our church. We are blessed to be in a position where we can potentially sell our current location and be able to get a new one that will better serve our ministries without going into debt. In fact, we would be getting out of the hole our current location is in by selling it. There's already a few potential buyers, so please pray that the land would be a blessing to whomever ends up buying it (I know that the school district is extremely interested in it), and that our church would stay receptive to what the Lord would have us do in our community to better serve and share his message.

On a separate note, how are you all feeling about the upcoming EtcetEra change? I was a bit surprised at us getting a mention in the post, but it's cool that we did. Hopefully it means we're doing something right!
 
So little activity in this thread is disheartening
Yeah me too though i am part to blame as well since i barely entered this forum anymore due to being really busy lately

Hey friends, been quiet the past few months due to all the craziness at work, so I guess I'm due to check in. Things are going well with me. I found out recently that one of my teammates at work is not only a Christian but also a poster here on Era!

The way I found out the first one was pretty funny, we had a demo that required us to remote into his PC and he forgot to turn off his Spotify mix. Next thing you know, worship music is playing out of the conference screen. I had a feeling he was a believer based off of earlier conversations and his sweet spirit, but that was the moment that made it click. It's pretty rare to run into believers in my industry, especially on the technical side, so to have one of the guys I work closely with being a Christian is a real blessing.

Other than that, I've been doing more volunteering with media at Church (we're studying Colossians right now), will be back to playing guitar this Sunday, and am in the process of moving. So is our church. We are blessed to be in a position where we can potentially sell our current location and be able to get a new one that will better serve our ministries without going into debt. In fact, we would be getting out of the hole our current location is in by selling it. There's already a few potential buyers, so please pray that the land would be a blessing to whomever ends up buying it (I know that the school district is extremely interested in it), and that our church would stay receptive to what the Lord would have us do in our community to better serve and share his message.

On a separate note, how are you all feeling about the upcoming EtcetEra change? I was a bit surprised at us getting a mention in the post, but it's cool that we did. Hopefully it means we're doing something right!
This is nice to read, im glad you found another christian friends, and that you and your church are doing fine! What is this etctera change? i barely visited this forum lately so i dont know what is happening, can anyone fill me in?

I pray that everyone of you guys are doing fine!
 
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I'm glad your church is doing well and that you are as well, LuxCommander. I hope it keeps up that way. It's always nice to find a fellow-Christian.

As for the Etcetera change, I... don't really know how it'll work, but it looks like Hangouts are going to be axed, and instead we're going to have a section for games, a section for entertainment, and then everything else will go in Etcetera. That should be good for our hangout in terms of activity, with the downside of giving it a much bigger cross-section. A lot of people in PoliERA, for example, are... really worried about having to explain political basics over and over again. Over on Socialism, well, the thread's founder is wondering if he should reiterate that the thread is primarily for socialists. Extrapolate those woes over to ChristianERA, and... yeah, I guess we're gonna have to see how this goes. Honestly, though, I feel like we probably won't have some weird religious debates from newcomers, but we might end up getting more people finding us. I guess we should pray for it to go well!
 
I'm usually only active on the Video Games side of the forum, but because of Emily's news post on the structural changes of the EtcetERA side of the forum and the gigantic list of topics she named there, I found out about this topic. I didn't know of its existence until now haha.

we might end up getting more people finding us.
So yeah, this happened. :)


Edit: About my background, I'm part of a group (we don't really call ourselves a church) where we focus on what the Bible says and study it. We compare texts with each other, educate ourselves about typological meanings of words/objects in the Bible, on Hebrew words and their different meanings in different contexts (so where the same word is translated differently in different contexts) and their numerical value and the meaning of those. It goes pretty deep and I'm still learning a huge lot of things every week.
 
I'm usually only active on the Video Games side of the forum, but because of Emily's news post on the structural changes of the EtcetERA side of the forum and the gigantic list of topics she named there, I found out about this topic. I didn't know of its existence until now haha.


So yeah, this happened. :)
Glad to hear it! Welcome, welcome!
 
I'm usually only active on the Video Games side of the forum, but because of Emily's news post on the structural changes of the EtcetERA side of the forum and the gigantic list of topics she named there, I found out about this topic. I didn't know of its existence until now haha.


So yeah, this happened. :)


Edit: About my background, I'm part of a group (we don't really call ourselves a church) where we focus on what the Bible says and study it. We compare texts with each other, educate ourselves about typological meanings of words/objects in the Bible, on Hebrew words and their different meanings in different contexts (so where the same word is translated differently in different contexts) and their numerical value and the meaning of those. It goes pretty deep and I'm still learning a huge lot of things every week.
Welcome! this group seems really nice, i used to have one as well to study the bible a very long time ago and it was really productive
 
Hello everyone , just found this thread on the community list thread, I am baptist christian from Brazil, looking forward to everyones posts ITT.
 
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