Jesus wants you to judge

I’ve always been a pretty big fan of the Ten Commandments. My favorites is the one that says “Thou shalt not judge.”

Oh, that one isn’t in there, you say?

Sorry, it’s easy to forget nowadays, especially in this country where many Christians carry on as though the entire Bible could be summed up by the phrase, “it’s all good, bro.”

In actual fact, there are a lot of urgent truths and important moral lessons in the Bible. Interestingly, almost all of them have fallen out of favor in modern American society. Here are just a few verses that aren’t particularly trendy or popular nowadays:

(WARNING: Politically incorrect truths ahead)

“Whoever harms one of these little ones that believes in me, it would be better for him if a millstone where tied around his neck and he were drowned in the depths of the ocean.”

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart.”

“But I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, unless the marriage is unlawful, causes her to commit adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.”

“Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”

“For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.” We hear that some among you are idle and disruptive. They are not busy; they are busybodies. Such people we command and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and earn the food they eat.”

Strange as it may seem, enlightened, progressive Christians rarely attempt to wrestle Ephesians 5 or 2 Thessalonians 3 into a conversation. Yet, while the bulk of the Bible has ended up on our civilization’s cutting room floor, the warnings about “judging” are quoted and repeated incessantly, by Christians and non-Christians alike.

Apparently, the rest of the Book is outdated, outmoded, antiquated and fabricated, but the verses about judging — that stuff is gold, man.

Here’s a fun experiment: post something on your Facebook condemning any sin — not sinner, but sin. Maybe write a few paragraphs about why we shouldn’t kill babies, or why marriage is sacred. Write something defending truth. Write something combating popular cultural lies about morality. Write something where you call out an act — not a person — an act, and then sit back and wait for the responses. Statistically speaking, it will take only 4.7 seconds before a self identified Christian rushes in to insist that you must never speak out against any evil, ever, for any reason, lest you be guilty of “judging.”

And then the “no judging” chorus will begin:

“We’re not allowed to judge.”

“Christians shouldn’t judge.”

“Jesus said to never judge.”

“You’re not a real Christian because you are judging.”

“You’re judging so I’m going to judge you and tell you that you’re a piece of garbage because you judge so much!”

“Judger! You’re a big fat judge-face, all you do is judge all day like a judging judge McJudgePants!”

And so on.

Now, here’s the thing: they’re right — well, almost. Unfortunately, they left out an important word. It’s not that we shouldn’t judge at all — it’s that we shouldn’t judge WRONGLY. The idea that we shouldn’t judge at all is 1) absurd, 2) impossible, 3) very much at odds with every moral edict in all of Scripture. It’s also hypocritical, because telling someone not to judge is, in and of itself, a judgement. Any time you start a sentence with “you shouldn’t,” whatever comes next will constitute a judgement of some kind. Saying, “you shouldn’t judge,” is like saying, “there are no absolutes.”

Translation: you shouldn’t judge… except when judging people for judging. There are no absolutes… except the absolute that there aren’t any absolutes.

Yet, have you ever noticed that these “Don’t Judge” folks are nowhere to be found when the conversation turns to the Westboro Baptists, or domestic abusers, or the Nazis, or Republicans? I guarantee I could write a post condemning gay marriage opponents as bigots and homophobes and not a one of these pragmatists would swoop in to tell me not to “judge.”

Behind the Bible, my second favorite book is the dictionary. Let’s consult it, shall we?

Judge: To form an opinion of; decide upon; settle; to infer, think, hold as an opinion.

When you tell someone not to judge, you’re telling them to stop deciding things, to stop forming opinions, to stop thinking, and to stop inferring. Brilliant bit of philosophy, Plato. “Stop thinking and deciding!” Do you really think Jesus meant THAT when he told us not to judge? Well, I guess you can’t think about it one way or another if you’re adhering to this whole “never judge” schtick.

I know we live in a sound bite culture. Everything has to be condensed down to 14 syllables or less, and every concept must be communicated in under 12 seconds. Entire elections are decided this way. And while this strategy doesn’t work well in the democratic system, it’s an absolute catastrophic heretical disaster if you try to utilize it in the realm of theology. Yes, Jesus said “Judge not,” but you have to read the rest of that passage, and then the rest of the Book to put those two words into context. Once you’ve done that, you’ll understand that what He meant is precisely the opposite of how it is translated by modern cowards who are looking for any excuse to shrink away from the task of standing up against our culture and its many lies.

We must judge. We must exercise judgement. We must be discerning and decisive. We must expose evil and identify sin. Only we must do it righteously and truly. Judge, but judge rightly. That’s the point. We are to judge the sin, not the sinner. People seem to love the latter part of that phrase, and then selectively forget the first portion.

We can not condemn a man to hell. We can not see inside his soul. This is an important point, but it doesn’t mean we can’t speak harshly about the atrocities of a particular individual. If a guy commits adultery, I’ll call him an adulterer. That’s not an insult or an evaluation of his soul; it’s a true and accurate judgement based on the fruits he has produced. If a guy steals, he is a thief. If he murders, he is a murderer. If he commits tyrannies, he is a tyrant.

Jesus stopped a bloodthirsty mob from stoning a woman to death for adultery. Famously, he said “let he without sin cast the first stone.” This profound Biblical event has since been contorted to mean that nobody can condemn any (popular) sin, or speak out against any (popular) evil, because nobody is perfect.

Nonsense.

Jesus wasn’t telling the crowd to chill out and be cool with infidelity; he was telling them that they don’t have the authority to pass final judgement on another human being for their moral shortcomings. In the immediate sense, he was also stopping them from brutally killing a woman. This can not be construed into him strolling in with a shrug and saying, “Hey, live and let live, dudes.” In fact, after he forgave the woman’s sin, he commanded her to “sin no more.”

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. That doesn’t mean that we must be without sin before we can call a sin a sin. Just because we make a judgment does not mean we are throwing rocks at a helpless woman. Sometimes, it means we are shedding light into a terrifying darkness.

Remember, this is the same Jesus who told us to separate the wheat from the chaff and the sheep from the wolves; the Jesus who called his opponents “snakes” and “vipers”; the Jesus who made a whip and violently drove the money changers out of the temple; the Jesus who said he came to bring a sword and drive a wedge between families.

He was loving and peaceful, but He was also manly, strong, courageous, outspoken, decisive, and commanding. He wasn’t a hippy. He was, and is, a King and a Warrior. Our culture has an agenda, and the agenda has nothing to do with following Christ or His precepts. Flimsy modern weaklings have taken the “don’t judge” concept out of context — twisted it, perverted it, and used it as an excuse to sit silently while all manner of unspeakable evils happen in their midst.

They’ve tried to turn Christianity into a religion of apathy and permissiveness. I certainly make judgments about their slander of my faith. I judge it to be sacrilegious, evil, and despicable.

And I judge it rightly.

So, don’t judge? Wrong. Judge. We must judge. The Bible exists, in large part, to shape our judgement and to tell us how to judge. We must teach our kids to have good and moral judgement. We must equip them with the spiritual tools to exercise it publicly, without fear. We must show them how to be discerning, critical thinkers.

You can not raise your children without judgement; you can’t function as a civilized human being without judgement; and you certainly can’t be an obedient Christian without judgment.

I am a sinful person. If you would ever consider accepting and celebrating my sins for the sake of being “non-judgmental,” please do me a favor and stop doing me that favor. I don’t want to be made comfortable and confident in my wrongdoing.

I’d rather have you hurt my feelings as you help me get to Heaven, than protect my feelings as you usher me right along to Hell.

************

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1,056 Responses to Jesus wants you to judge

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  5. Blake says:

    1 Corinthians 5:12 “For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge?”

    • mitch53 says:

      Context brother not sound bites. Passage is talking about exercising discipline and punishment against church members who sin. We have no authority to punish or discipline those outside the church who sin.

      • Sara Edwards says:

        The first part of the verse explicitly states “For what have I to do with judging outsiders?” There is no sound bite, it’s self explanatory. But just to take it a step farther, God uses the Law to judge outsiders and we are to utilize that tool. 1 Timothy 1:8 Now we know that the law is good, if one uses it lawfully, 9 understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, 10 the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers,b liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, 11 in accordance with the gospel of the glory of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted.” Before we come to Christ, we are judged and condemned by the Law. After coming to Christ, we are set free and cleansed provided our conversion is truly genuine and we bear evidence of it. If our fruit doesn’t show our rebirth in Christ, Christians need to judge that as the 1 Corinthians passage clearly outlines.

        • rolanski says:

          I love how it only condemns MEN who practice homosexuality. Way to be sexist and homophobic simultaneously, but I guess the two go hand-in-hand. Kudos to your bible and its “sound” judgment. If a christian ever has the nerve to “utilize” this “tool” and preach their judgment straight to my face, you best believe I will bitch-slap them to next year. This is why the world hates christians, and you people still manage to play the victim every time. I wish you all would just drop dead.

  6. Brandi says:

    Oh my word if I could give you a standing ovation for this I would. This was the most inspiring blog I have read!!!!! We need more people with this mind set people not afraid of the truth!!!!

  7. rolanski says:

    Okay, so if I’m now allowed to judge, then I will judge you and your religion. And I happen to find your religion evil and despicable, especially considering that there are hundreds of verses in your bible (I intentionally refuse to capitalize that word) that actually condone the murder of nonbelievers and “sinners”. I think the most prime and most relevant example is Leviticus 20:13, which actually commands christians (again, I intentionally leave that word uncapitalized) to MURDER homosexuals, in plain English. So if that’s what 2 billion christians make the conscious decision to believe, then I come to the judgment that christians are ALL murderers, or at the very least, bigots. If you have a problem with a behavior between consenting adults that harms no one except for potentially its participants, then you ARE a bigot. And yes, that means that jesus and god are bigots, too (again, I refuse to grant those titles the honor of being capitalized). I would consider your god to be worse than a bigot anyway, even worse than Hitler, because god sentences human souls to eternal torture for such arbitrary reasons as being gay or lying. And don’t even start with this “liberals and atheists are picking on christianity” nonsense, because I condemn islam as being worse than christianity, but christianity is still pretty bad. The world would be a better place without any of the abrahamic religions, in fact. So go ahead and try me. I have all day.

    • Katie says:

      Um, you know Matt does not actually go through and read all of these, right? Sometimes he posts twice a day. And he gets emails. I really doubt he reads these. If you want a shot at a response, try the facebook page. (Or email him.)

    • HaMalYa says:

      Noticed you capitalized Hitler…neat!

      • rolanski says:

        Yes, I already explained why I did that, if you bothered to read the entire paragraph (the part where I explained why I might believe Hitler might not be as evil as the judeo-christian god). And by the way, I won’t be working at Jack in the Box forever, if you’re trying to insult me based on where I work. I need that job to pay for school, just to prove to you that I have bigger dreams in life. Piss off.

    • jameybaxter says:

      So, your evil top 4 are:
      (1) Allah & Muhammed
      (2) Holy Trinity
      (3) Hitler
      (4) Everyone else

    • Robert says:

      Wow I’m going to have to judge here and say you are a truly ignorant human being.. :O

      • rolanski says:

        You’re retarded. I’m ignorant for condemning the bible for what’s actually written in it? Because the bible does condemn homosexuals to death. The bible is a violent, hateful book that calls for the death of anyone who isn’t a heterosexual christian. Go kill youself, the world would be better without you.

      • rolanski says:

        Oh yeah, and I read your other comment below. So what’s wrong with your (the bible’s) definition of a homosexual “act” anyway? It harms no one and is nobody’s business but the participants’. The bible fails to justify its moral stance on gay sex in an objectionable way other than “because god says so”. I will hate your god all I want, and rightly so. Your god is a hateful bigot who concerns himself with how the talking primates on the small blue planet use their genitals. Go fuck yourself. I have all the time to win an argument with a retard like you.

        • Robert says:

          You say you will hate “MY” God?? He is your God too stupid lol.. Maybe God will let me stand and watch when your judgement comes.. Hopefully I can smile at you when your on your hands and knees, crying your eyes out like a little bitch, begging God to forgive you for denying him..Have a nice day :)

    • VegasVic says:

      Leviticus makes no command whatsoever on Christians. Leviticus was a part of the law. Christians are not under the law. If you don’t understand this simple fact, you seem to not really know much about Christianity.

      • rolanski says:

        VegasVic, who cares? The fact that the bible says that at all still pisses me off, and rightly so.

        And Robert, oh fuck no. This isn’t over. You’re lucky I don’t know where you live. I would enjoy murdering you over and over again. Too bad that “judgment” day won’t come, because YOUR god doesn’t exist, STUPID. If you can’t see the incongruity of biblical statements with scientific facts that have actually been proven, then YOU are the idiot here. Besides, if you have that kind of attitude, then I’m pretty sure you’d go to hell too, according to your own biblical laws. So I would enjoy watching you be judged and burn in hell, as well. Shit for brains. I hope you fucking die a slow, painful death. Piece of shit. Oh yeah, and by the way, if that “judgment” day does come, then I will have you know that I won’t be begging like a little bitch. I will go down swinging, just FYI. I will stand my ground until the bitter end. So FUCK you! Let’s keep going, there’s no way you will win this argument.

        • Robert says:

          First thing, your ignorance shows is that there is NO scientific facts that has ever been proven on how the universe and earth was created, but hte bible tells you how..

          Second thing, you can deny Christ all you want, but if you deny God then your soul is doomed period..

          Third thing, I have NO problem telling you where i live you MORON!! Come on by and i will give you the pleasure of meeting your maker (GOD)!! So I suggest you don’t ever threaten to murder me again or you will see Hells Wrath!! Have a nice day!! :)

      • rolanski says:

        Oh yeah Robert, I forgot to say how very christian of you! If you are any reflection of how god or jesus is, then I’m not interested. Just proves that your god/jesus is an asshole and doesn’t deserve any reverence whatsoever. Looks like god really did create man in his image: intolerant, sexist, homophobic, and violent. Anyway, arguing with a christian is like playing chess with a pigeon. No matter how good I am at chess, the pigeon is just gonna knock over the pieces, shit all over the chess board, and strut around like it’s victorious. Have fun being a pigeon for the rest of your life.

      • rolanski says:

        VegasVic, who cares? The fact that the bible says this at all still pisses me off, and rightly so.

        Robert, how very christian of you! If you are any reflection of how god/jesus is, then I’m not interested. Goes to prove that your god is an asshole and deserves no reverence whatsoever. If hell does exist, then the only people who deserve to go there are people like YOU for having such a hateful attitude. Looks like god really did create man in his image: intolerant, sexist, homophobic, and violent. This isn’t over by a long shot. It doesn’t surprise or impress me that this is the best “argument” you can dish out. You can’t dispute the facts, so you resort to this “judgment day” nonsense. If that day does come, I’ll have you know that I won’t be begging like a little bitch. I will go down swinging and stand my ground until the bitter end.

        Read Revelation 7:1. It says that the earth has 4 corners. So you believe in a book that literally says the earth is flat, and I’M stupid? Bitch, please. Arguing with a christian is like playing chess with a pigeon. No matter how good I am at chess, the pigeon will just knock over the pieces, shit all over the chess board, and strut around like it’s victorious. Have fun being a pigeon for the rest of your life.

        • Robert says:

          Rolanski how can i insult something you don’t have and most likely never will.? The only PRICK here is YOU and I think everyone on this forum is in agreement with that. Its funny that you want to discredit the Bible and our God, meaning yours and mine, like it or not, but you can’t come up with any scientific way to prove differently. There is always a flaw when someone tries to use science to disprove.. well just what is.. Sorry you don’t like it but you should stop being a little bitch about it, pull up your panties and get on with your life. You know you live longer when your not angry and stressed. Again have a nice day :)

        • rolanski says:

          You’re the one who keeps prolonging this conversation. Let me fax you my high school transcript. I got straight A’s and a 4.2 GPA. Who’s stupid now? Oh right, still YOU. Until you can prove to me in a scientific way that your bible is factual, then you have not won this argument. Oh wait, I thought that’s what the definition of the word “faith” is. Believing in something that has no proof? If the bible was proven, then what would be the point of faith? Isn’t it impossible to please your god without faith? Dumbshit, I bet you didn’t think that one through. Keep going, I will not stop commenting until you have stopped completely.

      • James says:

        Vegas vic, there is a difference saying Christians are not “under” the condemnation of the law and Christians do not have to follow the morals laws of the OT anymore. God does not save us from out sin for us to disregard the law.

        • rolanski says:

          Robert, I thought the bible says thou shalt not kill? And turn the other cheek? But I guess you choose to ignore those commandments. Some “christian” you are. The last time I checked, the bible hasn’t been proven either, so I guess we’re both in the same boat in terms of our “theories” not being proven. See you in hell, motherfucker! :)

        • Robert says:

          Well maybe you should learn to read and comprehend what the Bible actually says.. The Bible shows proof each and every day.. You should remember that history repeats itself and the only incident that hasn’t happen again is the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. So yeah the Bible is the proof.. The Bible says tho shall not kill.. meaning murder.. You can defend yourself..Of course I’m talking to a person that has an IQ of an eggplant, so I shouldn’t expect any more out of you.. Everyone sins every day just the same as me, but denying God is the ultimate sin that you should never do.. I doubt I will see you in Hell cause I figure God as a special place for you.. Hope you have a nice day and ask God for forgiveness.. :)

        • rolanski says:

          LOL! Nice try. There is no proof that jesus ever existed. There are no records in Roman historical texts anywhere. The bible is the only document that suggests the existence of a man named jesus. And I’m pretty sure I have more intelligence in one finger than you do in your whole body. My IQ is 135. I’m pretty sure yours is less than half of that. For example, I speak 7 languages. How many do you speak? Barely one. I will reiterate this again: revelation 7:1 states, in plain English, that the earth has 4 corners. If you believe in the bible, then you believe in the flat-earth theory. YOU are the eggplant here, not me.

        • jmobeox6 says:

          Just a couple of comments and one question. One historical – there are numerous extra biblical references to the historical figure known as Jesus. They can be found in Roman, Jewish, religious and secular sources. Second one practical, I regularly hear the phrase used today about someone who has been to, searched or traveled to the four corners or all corners of the globe. Just exactly what the place Christian need to be put into.

        • Robert says:

          WOW!! You are living proof that you shouldn’t argue with complete MORONS.. Hope you have a nice life and hope you get God in your life before it’s too late for you.. :)

        • rolanski says:

          I will have a nice life, and I’ll do it without your god. :) And stop insulting my intelligence when you have none. Ok jmobeox6, so “four corners” might be an idiomatic expression in the 21st century, but as recently as 500 years ago, it was believed to be fact, let alone 2000 years ago when the bible was written. Remember Copernicus? I only meant putting RUDE christians in their place, like Robert. I heard a saying that god prefers kind atheists over rude christians, and Robert is certainly not kind by any stretch of the imagination. Can you at least agree with that? Believe it or not, I’m a kind person, but I just have major anger issues, particularly with pricks like Robert. I simply cannot let him win an argument with me.

    • Leisa Hale says:

      You’re only kidding yourself Rolanski. You have been judging and condemning Christians ever since one of them told you homosexuality is a sin. Probably before that. You never needed anybody’s permission. However, your judgment is not righteous, because your judgment is justifying your own actions rather than confirming God’s (and that’s big G fella, you’ll meet someday, and explain your disrespect, but that’s up to you.) I won’t try you, nor will I respond again when you rebut me, because what’s the point? You already have your mind made up.

      • Leisa Hale says:

        And I apologize for being rude. This is one of those cases where I should have been quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger. Not the best things I could have said, but once it goes into moderation, I couldn’t withdraw the words.

        • rolanski says:

          Ditto. I don’t mean to be so hateful, but I admit that I have anger issues. Especially when it comes to rude christians who tell me I’m going to hell. How can a rational person NOT get angry at that? And sorry for sounding disrespecful again, but I do believe the only people kidding themselves here are christians, if they believe in a book that says the earth is flat and doesn’t move. And I was raised in the church, just FYI, and denied my own sexuality and happiness for many years because of it. Just so you understand why I might have a little vendetta against christianity.

  8. rolanski says:

    LOL. I love how my comments must await moderation, so that you can censor out the ones that don’t agree with your narrative. Typical conservative christian.

    • jmobeox6 says:

      Oh great and wise rolanski, that’s not a choice Matt makes. WordPress requires that for all new commenters. So that would make you a typical conservative Christian basher – rash and ignorant. Oh and I guess since you are reading this, Matt approved your comment which make him the better person. LOL

      • rolanski says:

        Oh no, there’s no way in a million years a christian can possibly be a better person than a non-christian, not if they knowingly subscribe to such a hateful and violent theology. And I’m glad to be wrong about Matt censoring my comment, it makes him a tiny bit less bigoted (just a tiny bit, though). And sorry for not knowing WordPress’s policies; I don’t have an account of my own and I don’t plan on getting one, I guess that makes me ignorant, huh? Not. And how am I ignorant for bashing christians based on what their bible ACTUALLY says? Keep going, I have all the time in the world to argue with an idiot.

        • James McKenzie says:

          I hear what you are saying, rolanski. Christians can be hateful, judgmental (in a negative way, not in helpful, loving, constructive way), and non loving. And just on human merit alone, there is no automatic higher level of goodness that Christians achieve just because they are Christian. If there are mean, hateful, and selfish people, they are that way because of their self focus whether or not they call themselves Christians or not. People also deal with problems and pressures in this life and are caught in a weak moment no matter who they are or their religious beliefs are. So I guess we should all seek how to speak with more love and grace. But there is a big difference between saying the Bible is hateful and violent and saying that Christians have been hateful and violent. Can you give me an example of some passages that you seem to think make the Bible a book of hatred and violence? Maybe I can help you understand them in their context, and maybe you will teach me something too. But I will apologize on the behalf of any other Christian who has ruined the Christian image, and their Bible, for you. I have heard good messages on the Bible, and I have heard messages and teaching that are flat out wrong and out of context. Some ways people interpret the Bible make God into a bully who only loves those who “put their faith and trust in Him.” God’s justice goes deeper than that. The Bible also says that God will curse who HE chooses to curse and show mercy on who He chooses to show mercy. So any Christian or non-believer who has never the Bible or of God should be noted and rest assured to some extant.

        • HaMalYa says:

          Of course you have all the time in the world…or at least until your 5-8 shift at Jack in the box begins

        • micantewaste says:

          Rolanski, Jesus would have come and ate at your house if He was on the earth today because He loves you. He was called lots of names by the “religious” leaders because he hung out with sinners. That is why He came here. Whether you believe or not, even if you hate Him, He loves you. He loved you enough to lay down His own life and die a horrible death so that you could spend eternity with Him. He was there the day you were created in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139). God didn’t create hell for humankind. He created it for Satan and his angels that rebelled against Him. He doesn’t put people in hell. We make the choice ourselves. Jesus taught love, tolerance, forgiveness. He practiced empathy and compassion. He died for people that hated Him. He gave Himself up as a sacrifice so that we don’t have to die. He took the full wrath of God upon Himself so that we could be reconciled to our Father. If God was so vengeful this world would have been destroyed completely and all of us doomed to hell. I lived my life apart from God for many, many years. I believed many of the things you do. I didn’t want anything to do with Christians because I had been hurt so deeply by them and their religion. I also wanted to live my life my way. If someone told me I was wrong I would raise up in anger and tell them how dare they judge me. My God never gave up on me though. He chased me, courted me, ran after me. He showed me love and compassion. He forgave a multitude of sins in my life and He continues to forgive me because I am a sinner and very imperfect. I am not going to defend my God because He is big enough to do that Himself. Whether you believe or not doesn’t make Him any less real. All I know is that before Him I was lost and with Him I am found. I pray that one day Jesus Christ will make Himself real to you. I will pray that you will come to know our Savior and fall in love with Him and want to serve Him. He loves you and has wonderful plans for you. He wants to spend eternity with you. He is preparing a special place just for you and all He asks is that you accept the free gift He gave you, His life, so that you could be set free. I love you brother. I mean that with all my heart!!

    • mitch53 says:

      have you noticed your comments are on here?

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  10. caitlin says:

    Thank you sir for your bravery and unashamed proclamation of the truth! I will stand with you, I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ for it is the power of God to salvation to everyone who believes. (Romans 1:16)

    • micantewaste says:

      Unfortunately the Cross of Christ is foolishness to those who don’t believe. Why would a man lay down His life for those who hate Him? I believe that Jesus came into our world not just to show us love and forgiveness but to understand what it is like to be human. Since He is perfect and without sin Jesus had to become like us in order to understand our struggles. He was tempted in every way that we are and He overcame. How? He stayed close to His Father through prayer and spending quality time with Him. If we are truly born again people and filled with the Holy Spirit, we would show the love of Christ to the world and be able to draw unbelievers to Him just as He did. We need to stop judging those that don’t believe and judge ourselves that do (1 Cor. 5:9-13). Jesus didn’t come to judge but to save and to show the love of the Father. That is how He won people to Him. He still woes people with love. I am tired of hearing “Don’t judge me” from Christians. We are to judge each other. We are not to judge those outside of Christianity. I don’t blame unbelievers for not wanting any part of us. The centuries have proven that we can’t be trusted. It’s time to change that. Stop paying preachers to preach and give to the poor and needy. Be charitable. Be forgiving, Show love to the lost and downtrodden. Be like our Jesus in every area of our lives. Stop showing up at gay rallies with signs that condemn them to hell but bring the love of Christ through hugs and charity. Let God deal with a person’s soul. That is not our job. Yes, we are to judge – each other. We are not to judge those who are apart from God. Win them and woo them in the same manner our Father wooed us. Remember the prodigal. It is the only time in God’s Word that shows Him running to His lost son. All Heaven rejoices when one that is lost is found.

  11. rolanski says:

    James McKenzie, I appreciate you trying to reconcile my feelings about christianity, and you seem to be a kind person who isn’t bigoted. But I already highlighted one of the most hateful verses in the bible in my original comment, leviticus 20:13. I can’t think of any other context that verse can possibly mean other than “kill homosexuals”. And that particular chapter in leviticus goes on to list all the different kinds of people who should be killed for having sex the “wrong” way. Sorry, but my mind was made up a long time ago.

    • Rolanski, emotions like the ones you have towards Christians are definitely built over a long period of time and with a lot of thought, so I don’t expect to change your mind. I’m a little disturbed by what you’ve said though, and I would like to help you understand how Christianity and the way you should relate to it is more complicated then you’re making it out to be. It doesn’t sound like you come from a religious background, so let me clear some thinks up for you. First of all, there are soooooo many views within Christianity, so to say we are all hateful and violent is a wee bit hasty. There have certainly been Christians who have done awful things, but that’s not necessarily reflective of what the religion is meant to be. I am a pacifist, as is almost everyone else in my church (I attend a Mennonite Church). My church openly accepts gays, as does the Christian college I attend, as do a LOT of others from many different denominations. The scripture you cited is from the Old Testament. That verse is not commanding Christians to do anything because Christians did not exist for another three thousand years, when Christ came down to us. The Old Testament has laws that are written to the Israelites, who were a group of slaves whom God helped escape from slavery in Egypt. He made a covenant with them, or agreement, that they would worship him and obey him, serving as his missionary people who would make him known to all nations as God. The laws in Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy were there to help give their society order (I don’t understand what the purpose of the verse you quoted was. Many scholars believe the original set of laws given to the people was much shorter, and their priests went on to modify them). God’s side of the covenant was that he would protect them from anyone who tries to harm them, and provide them the Promised Land in which they would live, or base their mission. God used violence regularly to establish his authority and to make sure his people were not destroyed and prevented from doing their mission. People can’t ignore violence; it is very effective in getting something started (keep in mind I am a pacifist, so I refuse to carry out any violence myself). God’s intentions in the Old Testament are to make himself known to all the people he created. As things happened though, the Israelites formed a monarchy and began fighting wars they were told to fight, and became very nationalistic and exclusive. They were not obeying God’s will, but they had successfully spread his presence a great deal from where it started. But then he sent Jesus to earth, who would initiate the next step of his mission. Christians follow Jesus teachings and worldview, not the Israelite ones. The Israelite laws had the purpose of creating a smoothly functioning, orderly, peaceful society, and the goal was to bring everyone into that community. Jesus came to fulfill that purpose, and in order to make it happen, he updated the laws. Christians follow an UPDATED set of rules. Jesus instructs us to be forgiving, and to love God, our neighbors, and even our enemies. Is that hateful? He instructs us to turn the other cheek and says “blessed are the PERSECUTED.” Is that violent? He also says to feed the hungry and clothe the poor, and brings up some other social justice issues. He gives himself as the ultimate example of vulnerability and sacrifice when he ALLOWS himself to be executed. One of the very last things he says is “forgive them father, for they do not know what it is they are doing.” He says this of the people who are KILLING HIM! Is that what bigots are known for doing? Expressing unconditional forgiveness? Yes, plenty of people who “follow” him are bigots, be absolutely isn’t. So Jesus speaks of heaven and hell and the devil, but he is actually very unclear about what exactly they mean. The Bible is stuffed with metaphors, poems, analogies, and that type of thing. Here’s one interpretation: heaven is a metaphysical realm of paradise where everyone who has followed God goes, and hell is the realm of torment where the “evildoers” go. Another interpretation: if we live for only ourselves and push others down to achieve personal gain we are gonna create a hellish world of torment and selfishness, while if we resist the drive to be self-centered and choose to put our faith in Jesus and all that he stands for we will end up with a world of heavenly peace (probably not a literal paradise). And there are other ways of interpreting it too. Personally, I think the latter interpretation is more true to the PURPOSE God expresses in the Old Testament of making himself known to all his people. But like I said, there are sooooo many different views among Christians. What a Christian is meant to be is someone who follows Jesus. When Jesus was asked what commandments are most important for us to live by, he said they are to love God with everything we have and to love our neighbors just as we love ourselves. That’s what a lot of Christians do not do, but that’s what they are all SUPPOSED to do. You judged my religion as evil and despicable. Obviously, I disagree. It’s very fair of you to see many followers of this religion as evil, but the religion itself is quite brilliant I think. And there are indeed many followers who are indeed loving and sincere like we are meant to be (and there are also atheists, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, etc. who live this way). I hope what I have said here gives you a better understanding of who the Christian God really is (which is not totally understandable to humans), and what his followers could and should be. All of what I’ve said is only my own understanding, and even though it is VERY long, I feel like there is a lot I had to oversimplify. Boy, this really is long! You did say you have all day though! I really hope this is helpful to you and I’m really sorry if I seemed overly defensive or offended you in any way. If you have any questions to ask or wish to challenge something I’ve said, please do so! I want you to figure this stuff out, even if you don’t agree with it. Blessings to you!

      • rolanski says:

        That’s a good analogy. Sorry for letting my emotions speak hateful things towards christianity. I still, however, can never have a fully positive opinion about your religion, unfortunately, because I actually was raised in a christian home. My father eventually disowned me and kicked me out of his house because I’m gay, and he used his religious beliefs as an excuse for his bigotry. Not to mention the other countless negative experiences I have undergone throughout my childhood and adolescence, growing up gay in a mostly hostile environment. I just wish all christians could be as compassionate as you.

        • I’m really sorry to here that happened to you. And sorry for jumping to the conclusion that you have never had any religious background. No one should have to be treated the way you were, so I definitely understand where your feelings come from. Even if it was a fact that homosexuality is wrong, there is no reason a Christian should distance themselves from someone they believe is sinful. After all, Jesus socialized with thieves and prostitutes on a regular basis. I don’t think there is anyone I know personally who would defend your father’s actions. Sadly, I do know a lot of Christians (and non-Christians) who insult homosexuality thinking it’s humorous to do so, although none of them would actually say or do anything to harm or degrade a gay on purpose. The good news is, there is a lot of evidence of society (including most churches) moving towards the acceptance (or at the very least, tolerance) of gays. But here is still a lot of room for improvement in all aspects of humanitarianism among Christians and non-Christians alike, including me and you. Anyways, thank you very much for taking the time to see what I had to say and responding to it.

        • James McKenzie says:

          Here is another point to consider: Jesus tells us the summary of the law is to love God with all our being and to love our neighbors as ourselves. The New Testament originally was written in Greek. This Greek word for “love” is agape which has the idea of unconditional love. God has commanded us to love unconditionally. If you run into Christians who are not doing this, they are not following the Bible. They are deciding what is right to do and not do for themselves.

        • rolanski says:

          James, homosexuality is found in thousands of species of animals. I have seen, with my own eyes, two male dogs humping each other. There is even a species of monkey where all the males are bisexual. It is a completely natural thing and should not be considered wrong by anyone. AIDS did not start with gay people or anal sex. Homosexuality has been around since the beginning of humanity, even pre-dating condoms, buts AIDS has only been around for 30 years. How do you explain that? I realize that unprotected anal sex is not safe, which is why I don’t do it. Homosexual behavior/love may be a choice, but a homosexual orientation is not. Anyway, I respect your choices and whatever works for you, but I know what makes me happy, too. :)

        • James McKenzie says:

          Everyone has to decide what is right and best for him. I am sorry to hear about your relationship with your dad. I do not know all the details and cannot pass any support or advice with that situation. I can tell you where sex came from according to the Bible, but only if you want to read it. Christians are supposed to love unconditionally no matter how different someone is. No matter choices anyone makes. We should all strive to love and accept everyone. I do not have to accept everyone’s choices though.
          Can I ask you an honest question though? How do you know you are gay? You would probably say, duh, I am attracted to the same sex. So I do not ask to judge, but I do not understand how people automatically come to the conclusion that they are gay.
          I know we live in a culture where it is not politically correct to question people’s choices. I also define love as a choice not just a feeling or attraction. My wife is not my “type” physically. I did not settle for her one bit either. When I pictured in my head who I might like to fall in love with, my wife was not who I pictured. My love for her is much deeper than physical attraction. We connect on values, common goals, sense of humor, similar personalities. I think my wife is pretty, don’t get me wrong, but my views on what is important have changed in a deep, loving relationship. Can two men love each other in deep way? Absolutely! Can two women love each other and have a great loving relationship? You bet!
          Love is always a choice too. And we all have standards. For instance: people disagree today if it is right to pursue feelings of the same sex. But most agree that it would be wrong for me to pursue another women who I was attracted to while already in a relationship commitment with my wife. So, at some level. We all agree that we have to forgo our feelings and choices because in some cases they would be not the best choice. Feelings and attractions are not all there is to it. I hope I haven’t lost you yet or offended you yet. I am pointing out a true realization that attraction does not automatically mean love. We are always making choices on who we love. Some might have different types and natural tendencies toward different genders, physical types, and personalities etc. But it ultimately falls on our choice to love someone.
          It may also seem mean of God to make such a law against homosexual activity in the first place. In reality, Leviticus 20:13 was a law to protect God’s people from possible diseases that come from homosexual activity. AIDS is rampant in Africa where homosexuality and multiple sex partners and rape is rampant as well. So what seems to be a deity bullying His people into conformity to what He wants. God was actually protecting His people. Call it tough love. The people back then were pagan too. The men had little regard for women and used them for pleasure and did not value the people they were. When you do not value your sex partner, you actually devalue sex altogether. God also had laws to protect the people from eating foods that could make them sick. Today, those laws have been considered no longer necessary based on different and improved methods on cooking and preparing food. Correct me if I’m wrong, but there is no natural way for two men to consummate a loving relationship (have sex). Anal sex is not sanitary and can still lead a partner to getting a disease and/or contamination. One can also ruin one’s anal muscle for constantly having anal sex. Oral sex will generate a good feeling (orgasm). But not all good feelings are good for you. A drug you inject in yourself might feel good, but that does not mean it is beneficial. So if you are still with me: attraction and good feelings are not the same thing as love.
          God created sex. The Bible records Adam and Eve as the first couple. God announced that they would become “one.” This is a neat Hebrew word. It has the idea of becoming one flesh, one entity, one unit, one in a bond of love. We all seek this oneness with someone else. It is an intrinsic need inside of us that God instilled in us. We are created for relationship and pursuing love. It is a profound need. When we are not loved and are rejected, it hurts us greatly. So what happens when use sex for recreation and pleasure outside of marriage (commitment with one person), we lose a part of our selves with every partner. We also desensitized ourselves to the joy of sex when we have it with other partners. It becomes a game of who gives me the best orgasm instead of who fulfills my life. Sex gets devalued.
          God created us. If anyone has the authority to say what sex is and what its purpose is, it is God. Even if you do not believe in God and that He created us and sex, you must still come to the conclusion that males and females are naturally made for each other in nature. If either evolutionary forces and/or God thought that man could be with man, I believe our bodies would possess better equipment to procreate with one of the same sex and to enjoy the relationship to its fullest natural and safe end. In the power cord world, you do not connect a male plug with another male plug. You could try, but it won’t work. I believe God designed sex to be between a man and woman because He knew it was best for us. He knew that we would do better as a society as a whole if we had families with male and female personalities. Are their stereotypes and exceptions? Yes, but stereotypes terms exist because the stereotype personalities and rolls do exist too.
          If you are still reading with an open mind, you might say. I am gay and have no desire to end a relationship and/or seek a female relationship. So no thanks. And that is your choice. I believe all attraction is a nature and nurture relationship. Yes, we all have certain types we are attracted to more than others. But we must decide to nurture the relationship that is best for us. I could decide today to break off intimacy with my wife. We would begin to drift. Then I could come to the false conclusion that I fell out of love. There is no such thing as “falling in love.” Love is a choice. We all have natural attractions. Some we must resist because it would not be a healthy relationship. I am a frugal person. If I pursued a woman who I was attracted to but who was not frugal, our financial wars would quite easily kills any chance we had at maintaining intimacy and love. It would be a hard, uphill battle we were not meant to fight. So I think we can agree that not everyone we are attracted to is a good “match” for us based on attraction alone.
          Can we think we found our “soulmate” based on how we feel around someone? Yes, remember that falling in love is an emotional adrenaline that wears off. It is not real love. Can one nurture a homosexual relationship and have a long, good life together? You bet! No matter who you are with, real love is commitment, a choice, becoming one with common goals and beliefs. Love should not be seeking hurt or possible pain for another person. Homosexual activity is not good for one’s body. But if you have found a way to make it work for you and your partner, than that is your choice.
          I have met people and heard testimonies of guys who used to be attracted to men and who are now married to a female. Love is a choice. It is your choice to hear this out as food for thought. I will never judge you for acting on a choice. It is a free country. You have the right to pursue anyone you want. So do I, but I love my wife and will remain committed to her until death due us part, and I believe anyone committed to love will be a better women and men because of their commitment.

        • James McKenzie says:

          I believe that homosexuality behavior is seen in the animal kingdom too. I also believe a dog who found a way to “self appease” himself will do it to. It does not mean it is right, per se. I just have a hard time believing that homosexual orientation is a natural, born given trait, desire etc. Where did the inborn trait come from? I can have a good feeling masturbating with my hand (I won’t), but if I did, that does not mean I love my hand. Where did this orientation come from? Certainly not from two homosexuals reproducing? I believe it is a nature versus nurture argument that will never be settled fully. Studies have been done and “produced” results for both sides. But it is a free country, and I believe it is okay to agree to disagree but still be civil with one another. To be hateful and insulting does not help anyone.

        • Robert says:

          I find it hard to understand why so many homosexuals get so confused and hung up on what is stated in the Bible.. You are not condemned because you choose to be “gay”.. You are condemned for homosexual ACTS… I will dumb it down for you though… homosexual ACTS is having a sexual relationship with the same sex… So please stop with twisting what the Bible actually says to try and justify your hatred toward God..

  12. holiday says:

    First off I would like to say terrific blog!

    I had a quick question that I’d like to ask if you don’t mind.

    I was curious to know how you center yourself and clear your thoughts prior to writing.
    I’ve had difficulty clearing my mind in getting my ideas out there.

    I truly do take pleasure in writing however it just seems like the first 10 to 15
    minutes are generally wasted simply just trying to figure out how
    to begin. Any ideas or hints? Thank you!

  13. rolanski says:

    James, homosexuality is not a genetic trait, like hair color or eye color. It is a natural variation in the development of the brains of animals. The bridge that connects the two hemispheres of the human brain, called the corpus callosum, is stronger in women than in men. But sometimes, the wires get “crossed” and a male is born with a strong corpus callosum, or a female with a weak one. It is nothing more than a deformity, like being born with a deformed appendage (and I use the word “deformity” in the most positive context possible). Nature makes mistakes; genetics isn’t perfect. Besides, how would you explain hermaphroditism? (Being born with a penis AND vagina, another form of gender ambiguity found in nature). Is that written in the bible anywhere? Do all hermaphrodites go to hell? LOL.

    • James says:

      I know that there are studies to show that homosexuality attraction is a deformity, a mistake in the gene, a mixup in brain development etc. there are also studies that show that some people have a chemical imbalance and will not produce the proper balance of chemical hormones or (whatever) and will suffer with depression. But i do not think that we will say depression is okay. We might cut people slack for being depressed and offer emotional support. Doctors have developed pills to help with the chemical imbalance too. But to say that homosexual attraction is okay to accept because the person has no other “choice” is wrong. I believe that many life choices, likes and dislikes are a product of acquired taste to some degree. Just because some will naturally be atteacted to the same sex does not make it right. On the same logic, Some babies are born as drug babies, but it is not good to stay that way. It will take harder work to fight what is more natural. But people have to choose to fight it. Some people have a natural taste for alcohol, some will never like. Some who like it will come to a conclusion that they are addicted and that there is no way out. There is always a choice. The difference is this. People are starting to accept that homosexual attraction is not wrong. People recognize that other harmful habits are wrong and should be fought. But it is still a choice. Some will have a harder choice than others depending on how unbalanced the individual person is. But just because it is seen in natural is not a logical argument to condone the behavior. Hatred is seen in nature too, we do not excuse hatred for good reasons. But it is a free country. Everyone has a right to choice what is right for himself to some degree. I also believe that anyone who has homosexual attraction can choose differently as well. This is just food for thought. I can not pass judgment on anyone who makes certain choices or who struggles with this or that. I struggle with depression myself. I have a choice to live in depression or work harder to fight it.

      • rolanski says:

        I’m sorry that you feel that homosexuality it somehow “wrong”, that a form of love is somehow “wrong”. How is love wrong? I honestly don’t care about the technicalities of homosexuality being a “choice” or whatever. It does not change the fact that homosexuality does not harm anyone. Sure, unprotected anal sex may not be safe, but don’t assume that only homosexuals engage in such activity, because heterosexuals do it, too. You can’t compare homosexuality with depression or drug babies, becuase love is a positive thing and depression/drug addiction can be destructive. You only believe homosexuality is wrong because the bible tells you to. There is no other logical reason to be morally opposed to homosexuality. I’m sorry for sounding harsh again, but I don’t consider people who have moral objection to homosexual love to be human beings. Anyone who opposes any form of love cannot be a good person, because love is a good thing. The opposite of love is hate, which is a bad thing, and the opposition to love can only breed hate. Moral opposition to love can only mean that you believe that form of love should not exist, which to me is despicable. This is why I am morally opposed to christianity, because the christian god is morally opposed to homosexuality. god is not love, god is hate. If god morally opposes love between same-sex partners, then that can only mean god is hate, because the opposite of love is hate. “Make love, not war.” That means I would rather have men loving and fucking each other than killing and fighting each other. christians really need to re-evaluate their moral standings on certain things. Keep going though, I’m ready to rebut anything you have to say using your christian “logic”.

  14. Karla summers says:

    :)

  15. Lee Carlton says:

    WHAT DO REASONS MATTER, WHEN IT IS SO? ” We are writting about the Word of Life who existed from the beginning, Whom we have heard, Whom we have seen with our own eyes, Whom we have gazed upon and touched with our own hands…what we have seen, we are telling you…so that you may be ‘included’ and your joy may be full. And this is the message, God is Light and in God there is no darkness at all…Anyone who hates one’s fellow being is in darkness, even now…Be not like Cain who took his motivation from the evil one and murdered his brother…we know we have passed from death unto life by the fact that we love our fellow beings…anyone who does not love one’s fellow being is at heart a murderer…Little children, let us not love merely in theory, or in speech but in deed and truth, in practice and sincerity. By this we shall come to know that we are of the truth and can reassure our hearts in the Divine presence…beloved if our hearts do not accuse us, then we have confidence towards God…and even if our conscience condemns us, God is greater than our conscience…We love, because God first loved us…God is love and everyone who loves is born of God…Any one who says they love God whom they have not seen and ‘abominates’ a sister or brother whom they have seen is a liar and does not know God.” – from the letter called 1st John, by John the ‘beloved disciple’. What does this tell us about the central teachings of the gospel of Jesus the Christ? do Christians today accept the authority of an eye witness, from one who leaned on Jesus chest at supper time and was the only disciple present at the foot of the cross with Mary, the mother of Jesus and Mary Magdalene. To John, Jesus entrusted the care of his own mother and said, “John, know your mother, woman know your son. And he took her to his house from that day forward.” Church history tell us that John later moved to Ephesus and took the mother of Jesus, Mary; with him.

    THERE IS A Myth/STORY, about John the Beloved Disciple as he grew to old age in the Church at Ephesus: Seems, as older people are prone to do; he took to sitting in the same pew,near a support pillar, every Sunday. At each service and out of respect, because the blessed saint had actually seen the Lord with his own eyes, he would be invited to say something…the story goes that St. John would pull himself up on the pillar near his seat, look at the congregation and say, “Little children, love one another!” and be seated. A younger convert, finally developed the nerve to approach the old saint and asked, “Brother, Elder John; “Why do you always say the same thing to us each Lord’s Day? Reportedly, St John, replied, “BECAUSE, THAT’S ALL THAT MATTERS!”

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  20. Lorena says:

    I swear I’m not trying to sound hippocritical when I say this, but when I read the verse “thou shalt not judge” I believed it meant to at least not try to judge others. So I don’t. If people want to sin, it’s their problem, not mine. Besides, who am I to judge? I’m not perfect, and in the end my judgement doesn’t matter. If anything, my judgement is even silly to consider after God decides his judgement. And if I even have any sort of judgemental thought, I never say it. You are probably saying that I’m a hippocrite right now and that I’m judging you, but I’m not. I never said I was against what you were saying, I was just saying why I’m confused about your post.

    • FaithLorraine says:

      Lorena, I don’t think you’re a hypocrite. You’re being honest about where you’re at and the questions you have. That’s not hypocritical. I just wanted to point out though that “thought shalt not judge” is not one of the 10 commandments. Matt was being sarcastic. The point of this blog posting was to inform Christians that they are to judge what is right and wrong but NOT to judge the state of someone’s soul by condemning them to hell. Only God can judge the fate of a soul. So, in the instance of the woman caught in adultery, Jesus was not saying “don’t judge sin”, he was saying “You don’t have the right to KILL her for this sin unless you are sin-free.” Casting the first stone is not about judging behavior with our opinion but about judging the PERSON with death and damnation. I hope this makes more sense. So, you CAN decide if a behavior is sinful (judge), but you CAN’T kill them or damnation them to their fate (also judging). One kind of judgment is good / healthy thinking and discernment. The other kind of judging is acting like God and using condemnation.

      • I get what you’re saying, but to me, your post is adding in context and language that isn’t there. Christ didn’t say, “Let he who is without sin go ahead and kill this adulteress.” Part of the function of stoning was that there is no single person who actually is THE executioner. Every stone cast hurts and does damage. With that context (and the context of his many other messages), he’s saying that before we do anything, say anything, take any action that might be hurtful to someone else, we need to make sure that we are fully and completely without sin as he was. (The catch being that the moment we consider ourselves righteous enough to be allowed to hurt someone else, we clearly are not. )

        We are to love as we want to be loved. We can instruct, as long as we do so in a loving way that will not drive a wedge (because if we drive a wedge between someone and God, we are responsible for our actions and the consequences). And we need to be extremely careful that when we instruct, we are actually instructing on something that is clearly an instruction from Christ for all people, not something that may have had context tweeked by translators of the early versions to poke King James for a suspected affair or is a cultural law, as Paul had to address with some of the churches that preached one could only become a Christian if one practiced the Jewish rite of circumcision, and both Paul and Peter had to address with groups that proposed a requirement to keep Jewish kosher dining.

        Sadly, far too many professing Christians today get so hung up on the issue of sexual orientation and how they feel about the current more commonly accepted interpretation (or possible misinterpretatiin) of that tiny portion of Levitical law that they happily ignore the other portions of Levitical law that directly mesh with the teachings of Christ, for example, the importance of not giving foreigners a hard time, but rather welcoming them as one would family; the importance of assuring that no one goes hungry, that everyone can easily access food without being treated as a thief, even if they took food that I consider mine. Too many also forget that Christ instructed us to NOT lay up physical treasures on earth, to not worry about tomorrow, to not worry about dressing in the latest fashions or styles, to not accumulate wealth (especially when someone in need is right outside our door). No, sadly, far too many professing Christians today find ways to justify ignoring all those direct instructions from Christ, and his direct instruction to not judge but to focus on personal spiritual improvement, but (again) cling to a potential misinterpretation of a cultural mandate handed down by Moses.

        And, in my opinion at least, that is a huge reason so many today have turned their backs on the church. It also explains why so many who have done so, who have sworn off religion completely, have such a great respect for the new pope, because they see him at least outwardly making sure his actions mesh with the actual teachings of Christ. They see him showing love and compassion for the outcast and the needy, and holding other religious leaders accountable. And that bit of instruction by example is going a lot further towards reconciling people with God than any amount of judging about someone’s orientation, or any talk of “loving the sinner but hating the sin” as has been mentioned in some of the comments (especially since, inherent in that statement is the assumption that “I” am worthy of differentiating between the sinners and nonsinners, which to me is someone assuming the role of God the Judge, a form of blasphemy).

        But I have gone on far too long. I hope this does not come across as an attack on you, but rather a gentle correction for what I feel is a misapplication of Christ’s message of love, forgiveness and reconciliation.

        • FaithLorraine says:

          Hello Lorena :) I do not feel attacked. I am glad you took the time to reply. I do not think your response was too long. Thank you for explaining your view. I do, however, respectfully disagree with 80% of your interpretation. I agree with Matt’s blog post on THIS subject 100%. To me personally, your interpretation of what it means to have love and compassion when someone sins sounds like moral relativism. Just like we should want to honor Jesus’ death and resurrection by hating the sin He died to save us from (NOT the people), we should want that salvation for our fellow human. Many times, being loving is SHOWING someone their error even while we’re aware of our own flaws. We will never be sin-free enough to not hold each other accountable for wrongdoing. One of Matt’s points in this blog entry was to point out that many Christians today are only using bible verses about grace or “not judging” but ignoring the ones about standing up against sin. The bible is about both because redemption is about both. I do not believe I took the stoning of the adulterous woman out of context. The stones were real stones, not hypothetical accusatory words, and the crowd around the woman was indeed going to kill her; condemn her to death because of her sinful life. Just like Jesus did for us, he did for the woman. He saved her from DEATH and then commanded her to stop sinning. James 5:20 says “remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of their way will save them from death and cover over a multitude of sins.”

          I do appreciate that you shared your view and I hope you don’t feel attacked either. As you can tell, we’ll just definitely have to agree to disagree. ;)

        • I understand your viewpoint. To me, though, and based on my life experience, the best way to communicate Christ’s message is by making his love apparent in every aspect of our lives. By living a Christ-like life, we become that witness far more effectively than by telling someone else (that we may or may not know) what we consider to be the sins in their life. But that’s just me! :-)

          I do appreciate the ability to discuss differences in theology rationally, without being perceived as attacking or feeling attacked. (Sometimes on these comment sections, it’s difficult to tell without contextual clues like facial expression, body language or tone of voice!)
          - Jeff

        • FaithLorraine says:

          I just realized “yetanothercat” is not “Lorena”. Sorry for not realizing you’re not the same person. :( I still appreciate your response and my answer is still the same.

        • And I apologize too for any confusion… I actually signed in with my name (Jeff) and email, blanking that WordPress would revert my name to that of an old sportsblog I attempted to start several years back.

    • FaithLorraine says:

      Sorry about the grammar. I didn’t double check my auto correct like I should have. ;)

      • FaithLorraine says:

        Hi Jeff (yetanothercat) :) I completely agree with you about letting our lives show our witness rather than telling people. If people are paying attention, which many are, our example should point them to God and this is way more effective. Unfortunately there are so many types of Christians and those of us not really living the way we should so our example sucks a lot of the time. This isn’t a reason to start talking at all, but merely an observation. I know I am many times embarrassed at how I appear to reflect Jesus because my life isn’t exemplary. :( We do the best we can. But I still really believe there are many times when a person (Christian or non Christian) needs to be told verbally when something is out of place. I have appreciated when people have pointed something out to me that I could change if I could tell they were sincere and wanted the best for me. Some people need to hear the gospel, including what is right and wrong because simply watching a Christian live well might not be enough to cause salvation to happen. Also, there are just plain evil people (some who call themselves Christians) who actually ARE being jerks on purpose and making life for other people a living hell, and therefore verbal accountability is necessary. Paul says in Corinthians that if we verbally warn this type of Christian and they refuse to turn from their ways, they must be kicked out of the church. That is a pretty hard core thing and nobody likes to read those bible verses because it means we have to acknowledge that there is a standard to live by.

        I’m thankful for your courtesy in discussing this subject without name calling. It’s nice to disagree with a person on a heated subject yet Remaining civil and respectful. :)

  21. rolanski says:

    micantewaste, I’m sorry that I will never agree with your theology, because I support science and empirical evidence. But thanks for your kind-hearted gesture, none the less.

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  25. Pingback: Thou Shalt Not Judge | RealGirls

  26. Jeanett says:

    Hi there, I read your new stuff regularly. Your writing style is awesome, keep doing what you’re doing!

    • Don’t forget, Jesus himself summed up all of the Levitical Law (at least, all that he considered to be relevant and applicable) with, “love the Lord your God with All your heart, soul and mind, and love your neighbor as yourself.”

      He also instructed not to judge others. He Also said that before you say anything about the slightest thing you see wrong in someone else’s life, you need to take care of all the problems in your own.

      It always bothers me when people profess to be Christians, who take passages directly attributed to Christ, that are clear in every translation of the Bible, and say, “He didn’t REALLY mean this (even though it is part of the entire underlying theme of his message and life example.) And here’s proof! Paul said something else, and so did Moses.” They fall into the trap of many in the early Church, that of deifying the messenger (most often, Paul or Peter, and if they’re really cantankerous, Moses), rather than acknowledging these were men putting their own personal interpretation on messages from God. Paul’s scriptures were almost exclusively letters of advice he was writing to various churches as to how he thought they should operate. Yes, there is some very good advice in there, but there is also some ridiculously flawed thought processes (prime example: his support for slavery and the inferiority of women, just two of his cultural biases). I am not judging him by calling him human and flawed just like me, just like I am not judging you by commenting on what appears to be mistaken theology, the claim that everything written down in the canon (decided some 200 years after Christ’s life, and in the case of the NT, mostly written down 50-200 years after the crucifixion) is representative of the will of Christ.

      Yes, we must exercise judgment in our own lives, but when we take it upon ourselves to start pointing at other people and talking about their sins rather than focusing on what we can do to make ourselves better, we are violating a direct instruction from Christ, and making a mockery out of his life example. Remember, the ONLY two groups of people he spoke harshly about were those who considered themselves religiously superior to others and those who had a means to help others but refused to do so.

      He associated with the dregs of society. He ate with them without pointing out every little thing they were doing wrong in their lives. He witnessed by his life example, and his love and compassion drew people to him by the thousands. Those who ignore his message and his life example, who say “he didn’t really mean what he said; he meant the opposite!” will sadly but surely discover the error of their ways, when those they ridiculed as being spineless for choosing to not join in with the finger pointing so common in today’s church are welcomed with open arms, as they sit in judgment, having all their faults listed out for them as they listed out the faults of others.

      And to me, that is a terrible fate, because I know I have many faults. And I know that I must work on addressing my own faults, per Christ’s instruction, before even thinking about pointing at someone else and saying, “You are a sinner.”

      And I am not writing this to attack, but in hopes that at least some who subscribe to the viewpoint you describe will pull out their scripture and re-read the gospels, focusing in especially on the passages directly attributed to Christ, and then make the decision to be a Christian in deed as well as word, and live by the instruction and example he provided, rather than looking for excuses in the writings of Paul, Moses or others for excuses to ignore portions of Christ’s direct instruction. The world would be such a better place if all who profess to be Christians would focus their lives on the Jesus creed.

  27. Don’t forget, Jesus himself summed up all of the Levitical Law (at least, all that he considered to be relevant and applicable) with, “love the Lord your God with All your heart, soul and mind, and love your neighbor as yourself.”

    He also instructed not to judge others. He Also said that before you say anything about the slightest thing you see wrong in someone else’s life, you need to take care of all the problems in your own.

    It always bothers me when people profess to be Christians, who take passages directly attributed to Christ, that are clear in every translation of the Bible, and say, “He didn’t REALLY mean this (even though it is part of the entire underlying theme of his message and life example.) And here’s proof! Paul said something else, and so did Moses.” They fall into the trap of many in the early Church, that of deifying the messenger (most often, Paul or Peter, and if they’re really cantankerous, Moses), rather than acknowledging these were men putting their own personal interpretation on messages from God. Paul’s scriptures were almost exclusively letters of advice he was writing to various churches as to how he thought they should operate. Yes, there is some very good advice in there, but there is also some ridiculously flawed thought processes (prime example: his support for slavery and the inferiority of women, just two of his cultural biases). I am not judging him by calling him human and flawed just like me, just like I am not judging you by commenting on what appears to be mistaken theology, the claim that everything written down in the canon (decided some 200 years after Christ’s life, and in the case of the NT, mostly written down 50-200 years after the crucifixion) is representative of the will of Christ.

    Yes, we must exercise judgment in our own lives, but when we take it upon ourselves to start pointing at other people and talking about their sins rather than focusing on what we can do to make ourselves better, we are violating a direct instruction from Christ, and making a mockery out of his life example. Remember, the ONLY two groups of people he spoke harshly about were those who considered themselves religiously superior to others and those who had a means to help others but refused to do so.

    He associated with the dregs of society. He ate with them without pointing out every little thing they were doing wrong in their lives. He witnessed by his life example, and his love and compassion drew people to him by the thousands. Those who ignore his message and his life example, who say “he didn’t really mean what he said; he meant the opposite!” will sadly but surely discover the error of their ways, when those they ridiculed as being spineless for choosing to not join in with the finger pointing so common in today’s church are welcomed with open arms, as they sit in judgment, having all their faults listed out for them as they listed out the faults of others.

    And to me, that is a terrible fate, because I know I have many faults. And I know that I must work on addressing my own faults, per Christ’s instruction, before even thinking about pointing at someone else and saying, “You are a sinner.”

    And I am not writing this to attack, but in hopes that at least some who subscribe to the viewpoint you describe will pull out their scripture and re-read the gospels, focusing in especially on the passages directly attributed to Christ, and then make the decision to be a Christian in deed as well as word, and live by the instruction and example he provided, rather than looking for excuses in the writings of Paul, Moses or others for excuses to ignore portions of Christ’s direct instruction. The world would be such a better place if all who profess to be Christians would focus their lives on the Jesus creed.

  28. I apologize for the duplicate posts. My phone acted like it was not submitting my comment (and I have no compunction against judging equipment!; lol). Have a great day!

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  31. Pingback: Following Christ, Keeping His Commandments, and Making Moral Judgments | the five minute Catholic

  32. rolanski says:

    Oh fuck no. Robert, this isn’t over. You’re lucky I don’t know where you live. I would enjoy murdering you over and over again. Too bad that “judgment” day won’t come, because YOUR god doesn’t exist, STUPID. If you can’t see the incongruity of biblical statements with scientific facts that have actually been proven, then YOU are the idiot here. Besides, if you have that kind of attitude, then I’m pretty sure you’d go to hell too, according to your own biblical laws. So I would enjoy watching you be judged and burn in hell, as well. Shit for brains. I hope you fucking die a slow, painful death. Piece of shit. Oh yeah, and by the way, if that “judgment” day does come, then I won’t be begging like a little bitch. I will go down swinging, just FYI. So FUCK you! Let’s keep going, there’s no way you will win this argument.

    • James says:

      Wow, rolenski, why so much hate here? I am dissapointed with Robert’s mean comments too. But i thought u were better than that.

      What empirical evidence are you talking about when it comes to science? Do you know the definition of science? Science is an idea, that gets tested, turns into a hypothosis, further tested, observe and duplicate the tests and results, and then it can turn into scientific fact. The things that science observes today that proves what is happening today is different than observing what happens today and trying to say we know how it all came into being. Science has not figured out where intelligence has come from. Science does not know where time, matter, and space came from. We can study the creation of stars and even know that what stars do. But where did the first matter come from to form the first star or anything for that matter.

      The truth is, man is not closer to figuring out anything. Science does not have answers for something phenominal to start life and matter itself. Design theory is also becoming more popular in the science community for good reasons.

      So while i do not blame you for believing in the Bible and that the God in the Bible is the real, only true God, i do not understand wha empiracal evidence you are talking about for the existance of the universe.

      • rolanski says:

        Sorry, James. I try to be better than that, but Robert was pissing me off. I have major anger issues, in case you haven’t noticed. I just want the world to be a better place.

        Ok, so why can’t christians treat the bible like a science? They tout it around like it’s FACT. It hasn’t been proven, either, so how can it be fact? That’s what pisses me off. We can prove how old the universe is via carbon dating. It’s called the half-life of isotopes. That’s how we arrived at the 13.8 billion-years-old figure for the universe. Oh yeah, and I forgot to mention dinosaur fossils. It’s kind of hard to disprove that; we have the physical evidence right in front of our eyes. It’s not compatible with the genesis theory, which states that in the beginning, god created the heavens and the earth and all life in seven days. Because it’s proven that the dinosaurs existed 65 million years ago, and humans have existed for almost 100,000 years. It’s also proven that monkeys are our closest relative, considering the fact that human DNA is 97% similar to the DNA of a chimpanzee. Heck, our DNA is 57% similar to the DNA of a banana. But go on and keep trying to dispute scientific facts with your fairy-tale bible.

        And of course science can’t prove the “meaning” of life. It’s not meant to. The only meaning life has is what we give it. Why does life have to have “meaning” anyway? I think Alan Watts said it best: “The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everyone rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.” Ponder on that one for a minute.

  33. Erevna Den says:

    I don’t think I have ever come across anything you have ever written that was not 100% SPOT ON! A true apologetic theologian. Gotta love the troll/spam/hate mail you get on here, spewing their garbage. Regardless, keep up the good work, brother. Hopefully one day, they will see the light. I’m loving this article. Re-posting on facebook, if you don’t mind. Cheers.

    • rolanski says:

      Lol, by “garbage” I assume you’re referring to my dissenting comments. The only “garbage” here is the bible itself, which says in revelation 7:1 that the earth is flat (the four corners theory). It’s amazing that 2 billion people can still believe that in the 21st century. It’s better to have “hate” mail than to see only one side of the story. I hope one day all of the religious zealots of the world will see the “light” that is the scientific truth, one of them being that planet earth is an ellipsoid, not a two-dimensional flat surface. Get ready, because I’m not gonna let you get away with this comment so easily.

    • rolanski says:

      Lol, I assume by “garbage” you’re referring to my dissenting comments. The only “garbage” here is the bible itself, which states in revelation 7:1 that the earth is flat (the four corners theory). It’s amazing that 2 billion people can still believe that in the 21st century. I hope that one day all religious zealots in the world will see the “light” that is the scientific truth, one of them being that the earth is an ellipsoid, not a two-dimensional flat surface. It’s better to get “hate” mail than to only read one side of the story. Get ready, because I’m not gonna let you get away with your comment so easily.

  34. ə-ˈnä-nə-məs says:

    Rolanski, you sure do have a lot of time to sit here all day and throw a shitflinging tantrum over a blog post.

    Just an objective judgement, champ.

    • rolanski says:

      Lol, I actually work two jobs. But I get email notifications for this blog’s comments, so I simply respond when I have the time. But thanks for your input, anyway.

    • rolanski says:

      Oh, you don’t believe that I have two jobs? I still have time to use the internet, believe it or not. I simply find it important to put christians in their place, that is all.

      • Jimmy says:

        Obviously the young man is upset and lacks the information to articulate his point. However I do….. Homosexuality has had studies shown both ways and the Christians argue that same lame argument that must be printed somewhere on the internet for them to read. You know the ” I would like to have sex with other women but refrain from using my emotions and lust because it’s sin” blah blah blah. Good job on fooling the young people with this speech tho. Do your research, autistic children have also not shown a specific gene for their condition either. By your explanation I suppose they choose to be autistic? Science had repeatedly proven your bizarre claims to be false, unfortunately the bible is very vague and can be interpreted in so many ways. You just keep changing your interpretation of the bible to suit your needs. The fact is you not I can prove it does or doesn’t exist simply because you can’t study something that is totally imaginary and in your head. If you would like to argue points that’s fine, I have questions you can’t answer.

        • rolanski says:

          Ok Jimmy, I’m totally confused. First of all, who are you talking to? Who’s side are you on, and what point are you trying to make? lol

      • Randall says:

        April Fools

        The fool says in his heart, “There is no God”
        (Psalm 14:1; Psalm 53:1)

        Some theists use this verse to declare that atheists are unintelligent. However, it’s pretty obvious to me that the atheists running in my circles don’t lack intelligence. In fact, many of them are brilliant.
        Interestingly, the Hebrew word for “fool” in the Psalms above is nabal, which better describes a “moral fool” than an “intellectual fool.” Therefore, according to the Psalmist, it’s not the intellectually-challenged that say in their hearts, “There is no God,” it’s the morally-challenged.

        In What’s So Great About Christianity (2007), Dinesh D’Souza puts it this way:

        “My conclusion is that contrary to popular belief, atheism is not primarily an intellectual revolt, it is a moral revolt. Atheists don’t find God invisible so much as objectionable. They aren’t adjusting their desires to the truth, but rather the truth to fit their desires…

        “This is the perennial appeal of atheism: it gets rid of the stern fellow with the long beard and liberates us for the pleasures of sin and depravity. The atheist seeks to get rid of moral judgment by getting rid of the judge.”

        In a 2005 interview with The Guardian, the late Christopher Hitchens gave us his angle:

        “There may be many things to be said against atheism – I’m not an atheist anyway, I’m an anti-theist. It would be horrible if it were true that we were designed and then created and then continuously supervised throughout all our lives waking and sleeping and then continue to be supervised after our deaths – if that were true, it would be horrible. I’m very glad there’s absolutely no evidence for it all. It would be like living in a celestial North Korea. You can’t defect from North Korea but at least you can die. With monotheism they won’t let you die and get away from them. It’s the wish to be a slave. Who wants that to be true? It’s demanding the servile condition.”

        Ernest Hemingway said, “All thinking men are atheists.” I used to love this quote when I was a “thinking atheist.” However, when I examine the lives of atheists such as Hemingway (and my prior self, for that matter), I’m compelled to question the true heart of these memorable statements…

        For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.

        Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools… (Romans 1:20-22)

        Keep Thinking,

        Randall Niles

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