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Evangelicals Are Not Christians

Evangelical Christianity has been a significant force in American politics for nearly 40 years. It dominates the Republican Party and through that much of the debate on public morality. This is a strange development for many reasons, however.

Given that about 25% of all Americans identify as evangelical protestants, they are far from a majority. They owe their influence to a rigid deference to leadership and a high degree of stubborn political action. For all of this power beyond their numbers, however, the biggest mystery is where their agenda comes from.

It’s certainly not the Christian Bible. Very little of the evangelical agenda is justified by the good book, and some is even directly opposed to the words of Jesus. It’s long past time to call out the beliefs of this group and question their agenda because it is, if anything, not generally backed by consistent Christian writings or tradition.

The Sermon on the Mount. You know it’s Jesus ‘cuz it’s in red.

I do not want this to be taken as any statement of my faith or indeed as some “contest” to see who is the best Christian. My faith is a highly complicated and personal matter which is constantly being refined by prayer and study and is not the issue here. My favorite version of the Bible is a King James version with the words of Jesus in red. I admit that sometimes I bleep over the black stuff and get right to what I think is the most important part of it.

In the course of my studies of Christianity and other faiths I have come to some conclusions which many might find surprising, ut they work for me. My background is grounded in the Lutheran belief in Grace, or universal love, and reinforced by a very Mennonite desire to get right back to the words of Jesus himself.

Judge me however you wish. I am here to present facts which have guided my personal beliefs, not to state my beliefs in their entirety.

Abortion

The Bible is absolutely silent on the topic of abortion. It simply does not appear anywhere in it, at all. Where this is the single largest driving force in the life of Evangelicals, there is no basis in scripture for their stand. If anything, there is a vague understanding under Jewish law that life begins at birth, but it is not spelled out in any way, positive or negative.

Public Prayer (ie, in School)

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus preached the basics of Christian life and practice. It begins with the famous Beatitudes, worth discussing at length elsewhere – along with their insistence on compassion, empathy, and mercy. But he continues from there and comes to this passage just before introducing The Lord’s Prayer:

And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

Matthew 6:5-6 (NIV)

Yes, prayer in public is specifically called out by Jesus himself as something for hypocrites.

The War on Christmas

Much has been made of “The War on Christmas” by those with an agenda to push. The truth is that Christmas has always been problematic for many reasons, especially in the old English tradition of being a drinking holiday. But the Christian spirit of the holiday has come and gone over the centuries and lately is indeed under attack. The enemy? If you listen to fervent believer Charles M. Schultz, the problem is materialism. Indeed, “Happy Holidays” didn’t start out as a liberal plot but as a retail way of inviting everyone to come and spend money.

Evangelicals have never called out materialism. Those who preach a “Prosperity Gospel” actually embrace it. But the true enemy of Christmas as a sacred holiday for family and faith has indeed always been the rush to spend and give. Schultz had it right. Where did he get his values from? Jesus, again, in the same sermon:

No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.

Matthew 6:24 (NIV)

I have yet to hear Evangelicals call out commercialism or indeed capitalism as a whole, and certainly it has never been an important part of their agenda.

Homosexuality

This is a more difficult one, because a prohibition against homosexuality does appear in the Bible. It’s part of Leviticus, a series of laws given by God himself to the Jews (more on that later). It’s very harsh.

“If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.

Leviticus 20:13 (NIV)

The problem is where this appears. It’s right after the same prohibition, and punishment, for serving as a medium to the spirits, committing adultery, and disobeying your parents. It’s one chapter after the more general prohibitions against shellfish, mixing meat and milk, tattoos, and mixed fiber clothes.

These laws were generally tossed aside by Christian tradition, which is why they are not practiced today. To emphasize one but not the other is to pick and choose, which is in itself rather blasphemous. We should, instead, be asking what Jesus said about homosexuality, and that much is clear – he said nothing at all. Not a word.

For his own part, Paul commented further.  This is clearest condemnation of homosexuality in the Bible, but it isn’t really all that clear.  In his letter to the Romans, Paul saw it as a sin, certainly, but again put the root problem with materialism.  It’s hard to condemn one without the other:

Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

Romans 1:24-27 (NIV)

The Ten Commandments

Some Evangelicals are very insistent that the Ten Commandments should be put on public display. In fact, doing so with stone tablets in the Alabama Supreme Court was what got Roy Moore kicked off the bench the first time. But there is a big problem with them.

Rabbi Meniades found that there were a total of 613 laws given directly by God, not just the first ten. They are enumerated in Leviticus, as above. Most are ignored by Christians, but not by Orthodox and many Conservative Jews. Many are repeated in the Qu’ran.

What about the other 603? Evangelical Christians are silent, except the one they like (as above).

But staying with the first Ten, we still have an issue. The wording on them is slightly different in Jewish, Catholic, and Protestant traditions but the Fourth one is pretty clear in all of them: “Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it holy.” The problem is a simple one – the Sabbath is on Saturday. Christians chose to move it to Sunday, the day Jesus rose. Evangelical Christians, excepting Seventh Day Adventists and a few other small groups, violate one of the big ones every single week.

Where Does This Leave Us?

If you read the words of Jesus himself, it’s all pretty clear. There is a new covenant that cast aside the harsh laws of the past and is based on love. That love is for all of creation, of which we are a part. That’s not to say there won’t be people who say otherwise, but Jesus had a lot to say about those who would misrepresent his word for political gain:

Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.

Matthew 7:15-20

This particular passage was elaborated on by Paul in his letter to the Galatians, who wanted to know more. Is it really that simple, that we’ll know who is good and bad? Paul said it was:

The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

Galatians 5:19-26

In this outline of what a good person and a good leader is, we are given a handy tool for evaluating who is indeed righteous. They will possess and practice love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. If that doesn’t describe your leaders, either of your political movement or of your nation, there may be something of a problem – that is, if you are indeed a Christian.

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45 thoughts on “Evangelicals Are Not Christians

    • Thank you. I have had my fill of this and have decided it’s long past time for me to be shy about my own personal studies and beliefs. I do not wish to be like them so I’ve been private for a long time. But that silence is starting to feel like complicity.

  1. In my very late 60’s, i was raised in church, watched Billy Graham crusades with my dad whenever they were televised, attended Bible camp for many years in my teens, tend to quote verses in King James English & evidently was living in a bubble since i never paid much attention to politics until Donald Trump was became the nominee for president. So, it hit me hard when i found that Evangelicals were supporting him. upset me when Franklin Graham praised him & wonder if it is what the Bible calls the “falling away from the the faith”. Thank you for this post.

    • It is beyond astonishing that they follow that man. He fits the description of Satan so much better than that of Jesus. It’s not my place to anyone who is worthy of following, but I can say that this is clearly not what Jesus taught.
      I also prefer King James, as I was raised with it. But the language of the NIV is more contemporary, so I thought it would reach a wider audience. 🙂

      • KJV the first Interpretation. Is all about Born Again from flesh and matter World and to “Love One Another” because the Spirit (light, energy) cannot be created or destroyed. We are not the matter cycle (s). We are all on our journey who can compare one journey to another? Matthew 5:45. Says there is no GOD running earth Your Free Will and personal choice opens the door to you Self -Realization from just Waking and Dream states of Matter to eternal Light and Spirit State from Within and the Universal Cosmic Consciousness. I call Super Conscious State beyond matter and the physical material world.

    • Free Will is the Basis of America and Individual is a Natural Consciousness of birth (wakening of flesh and dreams). A new soul that has yet to have conscious actions. Group are not born they are man-made for a Need to belong and Survive. Free Will is free as long as it obeys social law. Another man-made group. Nature has no man-made, animal or plant laws. Just the Law of survival.

      Human Wants, Desires, Emotions and Sense Pleasures are what makes humans different. No harm, no foul.

      “Red” Letter are what they said “Jesus Said” or the WORD of John 1. Jesus said: “God is a Spirit and must be worshiped in Spirit. A purpose of Life to live not or the flesh or mammon, but a higher state of spirit/Light beyond matter. About 100% of what man know. Existed before man knew it already existed in this matter world.

      Quantum Physics is learning that in the Light/Energy the Sub-Atom World their is Light Eternal and not just matter and flesh. Proving a higher Consciousness not a person or higher state of Matter. This Super state of Consciousness breaks the matter cycle of evolving matter and recycles of matter simply changing form. It proves Patanjali’s 8 steps of Yoga (Krishna, Buddha), Born Again Jesus flesh to spirit, etc. Not a worship of flesh a body or Jesus, Krishna, Buddha, Muhammad or Moses. A church of human matter worship. Being a Krishna, Buddha, Christ, Muhammad or Moses, etc.

  2. For me – Humanist Atheist – it is all easily summed up in your last paragraph and the passage from Galations. I might shrug at the bit about idolatry and witchcraft – one is not a concern to atheists and the other has always mostly been a method for controlling women, while neither affects a person’s character. But it is horrifying to watch how today’s evangelicals have so twisted the words of the document they propose to follow. I think this is an excellent summation of their errors.

    • Thank you. Yes, we can all find various things we like or dislike in any statement of faith. But we also all know decency when we see it, and that is indeed the root of the teachings of Jesus and his followers. So let’s just start there and point out where that failure occurs. It’s pretty straightforward and easy.

      • LOL.. Root that Energy cannot be created or Destroyed is a false Root? that materialization of matter is all that there is?

        The root is Quantum Physics identifies Matter is Energy. A limited time and space of Waking Consciousness or Dream Sub-Consciousness is but matter changing form in Materialized Energy, just slow/gross energy.

        Like every atom is 99% space so are human’s.

        Within every atom (sub-atomic) there is Light/energy the Light and Truth of existence (creation). Man does not know WHY, WHEN or HOW life began.

        Hating a Man-Made name or Believing or Believing NOT Seems so Childish or immature to me. The Earth Spins at 1100 mph, Solar System at 180,000 mph and Soaring through Vast Space at Millions of mph.

        Reminds me of my first masturbation orgasm. Maslow calls it a 1, Physiological Need of sex, not BELONG (flesh or Spirit) and LOVE need.

        Society all of a sudden know nothing new. Sex is sex and love is not sex.

        The evolution of rotting bacteria in a wheel chair. Cannot get beyond the physical material world. So it cheats and lies to itself for personal Wants, Desires, Emotions and Sense pleasures. Pretending the Universe is rooted in the mind. Not living the wonder of the Universe. As Jesus Said:

        Obviously you are intelligent and learned. Please Interpret this for me. Hint, “May is archaic meaning YOU CAN”

        Matthew 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;

        Matthew 5:45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.

        Matthew 5:46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?

        Matthew 5:47 And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?

        Matthew 5:48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

        Other wise someday you rotting flesh evolution will be the last island of earth with no food, clothing, shelter, and no survival.

        No big deal because there are more Planets. I only prey the Human species exists before this one Kills itself for Loving Matter resulting in over population and consumption of the sustenance required for matter to exist. This creation might account that human and humanity was planned put into the DNA of the purpose of existence. But life existed before human and can exist after humans. So if you believe in only Matter. Gee, you belief more than Church or Churchianity. Be I am He, a Christ, Buddha, Krishna, Muhammad, or Moses. Self-Realized on my journey to be Light and True. I worship no flesh. I loved my mother and father, sibling’s not so much except the physical blood of matter we shared. Instead I love the Life, Light and Truth. Not a gambler. Hated taking cash, ego and pride from human flesh worship. It added no cupid onto “Love On Another” Like basic training we all were in the same circumstances. I simply made my choices work for me. Manipulating my body, my mind and my Spirit. Not yours or their.

        Enjoy

    • Only the individual can control how they treat and are treated. Man did not invent procreation, birth or death of matter changing form Man-made is human creation. Not nature. “Is life not more than bread alone”? You should search for Maslow’s Hierarchy of Individual Needs. Think about our Matter Consciousness (birth/death) is ab single path not a man-made state or physical attributes of flesh (sex, age, color, race, place of Origin, etc.)

      Every living thing on earth is an expression of individual. Unless man interrupts forb a bigger berry for bigger profit, flavor, etc. Separating good from evil is an individual consciousness. Not a fake group consciousness. “There will be Peace on Earth When each heart has Peace. Women will be strong, in control from within not out. My mother had to go to work and feed here family and my Grandmother had her Castle, Garden, succulent fruit, vegetables, and flower, Canning, cooking of Ice Cream Roll to family Turkey Dinners. Never missing a trip to the Mountain for Wild Flower or Camus or Wild Onions. My Granddad made the cash bread and she mad the bread of the earth. A wonderful world of Matter. In Spirit they did not speak the simply ACTED like Saint Francis of Assisi with out Words. I was raised Independent, but Responsible. Treat a women bad? Be treated bad by a women. You would here stories of a 1st wife screwing their best friend or anyone. Free Will suck up the pain. Resist bad behavior.

      Free will to fight Nature or Natures GOD. But energy cannot be created or destroyed and matter (flesh) simply changes form in it’s evolution of matter (bacteria).

      Errors (evil action of humans). Physical Harm (murder), Mental (Harm (psychological) and Spiritual (FORCE of belief and Mind beyond the Individual free will with no harm). If we are all light how can you kill, harm or feel you are insufficient place in a nature, not by man or nature’s GOD.

      “Love On Another” because WE are not flesh, Spirit by what we DO?

  3. This is shocking to me. Abortion isn’t mentioned in the bible? I was taken a back by your headline but when I got to the end I realize what you mean. Wherever they get their agenda it isn’t the bible. This is just a shock.

    • It most definitely is not. Their agenda is NOT the Bible, not by a longshot. It is made up and they use Jesus for cover. It is despicable if you ask me. People can be against abortion and I can understand that. Don’t tell me Jesus said so. And don’t lie and treat people like dirt for not following that false witness against Jesus.

      • True.. It is what you do… Not think, belief or MANIPULATE

        I cannot say it is Evangelisticism? Just Human’s being the Human Condition (selfishness, surviving and comparing for short lived advantage. A narrowed perspective of the purpose of Life. Purpose of Life: Righteousness, right spiritual action by the reactions effect on others by what you do.

        So they at stuck in matter again and again till they REALISE. All Matter is Energy. Just ignorant of the Universal Consciousness. We are not man-made flesh. Evolved or Not. We are the Light. the WORD that cannot be created or destroyed..

    • Is not Life and Living a plant, cow, wart, and even cancer? Is FREE WILL not life? Is not Matter materialized energy. Organic or inorganic? The unique vibration in every atom is not life? As the Sub-Atomic energy create light and energy even in a rock?

      Matthew 3:9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.

      LOL… Killing each other for Land that is all immaterial.

      Matter is Energy… How do you kill energy except in you own minds delusion and EGO. The longer the particle wave of more EGOTISTICAL the delusion of Reality.

      Energy Cannot be Created or Destroyed. It is the light and Truth of existence/creation. Not the smell of matter perceived by an individual or mass of individual in matter/flesh consciousness. I am HE, Christ, Buddha, Krishna, Muhammad, Moses, Einstein and Sagan Consciousness.

  4. As a Catholic we were never told to read the bible. I can see why as I grew up. Some of what you say here reinvigorates my faith through Pope Francis because I agree that capitalism has gone crazy. But the rest of it is too much to take in. If the bible is really pro-choice you should come out and say so because that it a total game changer.

    • What exactly do we do at Mass for the first half? We read Scripture. So while nobody may have said specifically for you to read your Bible, you heard it all of the time and it is pretty standard practice for a Catholic to open a Bible and read it, at least that’s how it is supposed to be. The Catechism of the Catholic Church–the other book a Catholic is supposed to own–outlines how the Church understands Scripture as well as how the lay faithful are meant to pray with Scripture. You can’t level the blame entirely on the Church. While I believe the Church suffers from a lot of self-inflicted wounds, we have an obligation to figure out what we are supposed to believe. So if you want to know what the Church actually teaches, then you’re going to have to put the effort in.

      The Bible is not the ultimate authority for the Catholic Church. How could it be? She compiled it after centuries of oral tradition in the 4th century. Sacred Scripture, Sacred Tradition, and the Magisterial teaching office make up the three pillars for how the Church approaches divine revelation. If you believe that the Bible specifically must mention something by name to be immoral, then you do not understand the Catholic Church. Pick up the Catechism. Not only will it explain the Church, it will explain how we understand Scripture, the moral law, and how the Church in being instituted by Christ preserves and teaches the fullness of truth which has been handed on for 2000 years.

      If you’re looking for an exact mention of abortion–even though infant sacrifice and abortion are practices repeatedly mentioned in the Old and New Testaments according to Scripture scholars who can interpret Scripture in accordance with Sacred Tradition and the authority of the Church, precisely because these practices offered to Baal, Moloch, were frequent in pagan religions–the ancient Didache of the Early Church discusses it. You have an obligation to study what the Church teaches. Faith is not spoon fed from the pulpit. We have to put in the effort to figure out what the Church teaches beyond press releases that are often distorted about Pope Francis. If, your faith is based on the Pope then you have fallen for an ancient heresy. The actual Jesus Christ, the living God is who Pope Francis worships and he does so in accordance with the teaching and morality of the Church, including the fact that abortion is morally repugnant and gravely evil. That will never change. There are 33,000 denominations to choose from where people pick and choose what they like from Scripture. For the Catholic, we choose to love and accept her teachings or pray for the conversion to do so. That’s what a Catholic is, one who loves Christ AND His Holy Church.

      As to the author of this piece, since you presume–as do Evangelicals–that you have authority to open the Bible and interpret it as you see fit, then you make the exact same mistake as those who you criticize. Scripture is not the ultimate authority. In fact sola scriptura cannot be found in the Bible anywhere. Rather, the fullness of truth is Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition (this came before the Bible, how do you think we got the Bible?!) as is interpreted through the Apostolic successors who are the Bishop and the head is the Pope. Christ instituted a Church. A practicing Jew was not going to do away with religion as a whole. That is a modernist lie and betrays everything we know about the ancient world and God Himself. A person reading their Bible by themselves could not possible come up with all of the proper interpretations for all of the historical, allegorical, symbolic, linguistic, etc. knowledge that is needed to understand what the Bible teaches about salvation history and the moral law given by God. Instead of proving anything other than that ideology is harmful to Christianity, you’ve merely replaced your own ideology with that of Evangelicals.

      • Very good. There is a lot of historical interpretation, and I am willing to accept that. For example, Evangelium Vitae teaches that the Catholic Church is pro-life in every possible sense of the term. Is that exactly what Jesus taught? No, but it is consistent and honorable. It is also taught in a way that emphasizes the direction of the hearts of believers and not political action in conflict with other institutions which include non-believers. It’s completely different in that sense.

      • A 50 year Yogi of Parmahansa Yogananda. Who came West in 1920 to BIND the Spirit of GOD in both East and West Teachings.

        His first assignment was to read the “red” letters of KJV end to end several time. 20 minutes seems to be the best I could do.

        The importance of “red” letters, Jesus Said” or the WORD. Should not have any less meaning to Believers or Believers NOT to those who live for Mammon or the NAME GOD. Energy cannot be crated or destroyed by a human or nature. It is the Creation or Existence. Name it DNA, Rotting Flesh of Matter changing form. So yes, replace ideology does not replace Science (Waking State and Dream State Consciousness (matter) or Cosmic Consciousness of the Universe, Quantum Physics defines Matter is Energy, I call GOD the creator and Creation of the Universe. Sagan or Einstein cannot disagree. Free Will to choose is an individual free choice. Why peace, joy and bliss are a personal choice.

        But what POWER of a man’s flesh is more important than another’s The teaching of Jesus (written in English KJV “red Letters) is the horses mouth so to Speak. When I became Learned in any discipline. It did not make be Subservient to a teacher. Part of my learnedness was not to follow the Teacher (I selected on purpose) but to be the teacher or more perfect the subject matter

        I have known on teach in body that can teach the Spirit to others It is a self-realization of being Spirit. John 4:24, Matthew 5:45-48, Matthew 6:21-24, John 3:3, 5, 13 tell you HOW TO BE not JESUS or the STORY of the flesh of Jesus 2000 years ago. TO BE a Christ/Spirit like GOD. Same as a Buddha, Krishna, Muhammad and Moses. Not to worship their FLESH.

        What church or man’s knowledge can replace this: It is a Self-Realiation in Body, Mind and Soul. Is it NOT?

        ohn 15:1 I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.

        John 15:2 Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.

        John 15:3 Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.

        John 15:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.

        John 15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.

        John 15:6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.

        John 15:7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.

        John 15:8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.

        John 15:9 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.

        John 15:10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.

        John 15:11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

        John 15:12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.

        John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

        John 15:14 Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.

        John 15:15 Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.

        Church are where you gather and share and 2 more has the Spirit of Jesus, etc.

    • I see this WORD as it was written In 1500 or the Time a Christ in Dead Sea Scrolls as meaning Energy Cannot be Created or Destroy. Mammon and GOD are Free Will Choices of what you do or Support in human behavior. I guarantee these words the Word. Express an Ideal of human behavior beyond selfishness of humans and the ravage of nature. Dying with a Spear through the Heart or your child’s brains being blown apart by a Drone titled “USA, USA, USA. Does not change Matter is Energy. Just pssd poor human existence that has evolve DNA unrelated to human Mental Delusion. Each individual (MAY, CAN BE, WILL BE) choose to live within nature of Good v. EVIL. Not a popular belief or following of man-made. My father and grandfather lived Righteously (right spiritual acting). That all humans are the same atoms in a stone. That their actions defined them by the reaction they have on other humans. Does not mean you bend over and let bad behavior EAT you Children… The opposite. Still you preserve the individual right of Free Will as long as it harms no won regardless their Sex, Color, Race, physical material age, etc. We exist in Nature under a Nature’s GOD Not man-made. And not all humans are equal by what they do. Many do not even understand or will in this Matter life Cycle. Many seeking Need of Love and Belonging, Rush in where Wise Men fear to Tread. Blind Following, Believing or Not Believing. The light and Truth cannot be created or destroyed. I dwells within all organic or inorganic MATTER. Matter is Energy… Quantum Physics.

      Matthew 5:45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.

      Matthew 6:22 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.

      Matthew 6:23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!

      Matthew 6:24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon

      There are selfish people PUSHING other humans into Simpleton choice of Love/Hate, Liberal/Conservative, Believe/Believe NOT. This is not Self-Realization of Science or “LOVE ONE ANOTHER” life is eternity. Death is a mater recycle of matter simply changing form. Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs explain a free will to perfect the body and mind. Soul is a transcendence of body and Spirit. The Born Again to SEE or ENTER the light/Spirit World. Not water or blood… Flesh of water and blood to Spirit beyond matter/flesh/body. Find a Rocket Ship that give you behavioral action you can SEE and BE a Christ…

  5. Quote>This is a more difficult one, because a prohibition against homosexuality does appear in the Bible. It’s part of Leviticus, a series of laws given by God himself to the Jews (more on that later). It’s very harsh.>End Quote

    Hi Erik,

    There appears to be many people who have a problem differentiating between Jews, Christians and Israelites. Especially when studying The Word

    In your above stated quote you state that God gave his laws to the Jews as written in Leviticus. At that time He actually gave the laws to ALL of the children of Israel – Not only the tribe of Judah.

    As you are aware, the children of Israel eventually divided. The northern kingdom of Israel did not include Judah(Jews), Benjamin and eventually the priestly tribe of Levi.

    In fact the first time the word Jew is used in the Bible(KJV) relates to a time when the northern kingdom of Israel was at war with the kingdom of Judah – 2 Kings 16.5-6

    The majority of the descendants of Jacob(Israel) are not Jews and never have been.

    Generally, when the Bible speaks of the house of Israel and the house of Judah it is speaking to us about two entirely different peoples. Many confuse the two. Thus, misunderstandings occur as to what The Word is actually saying to us.

    When the Bible speaks of the children of Israel then it is speaking about ALL of the descendants of Jacob – including Judah.

    The original converts to Christianity were Jews, however, over time, as so-called Gentile converts became numerous and became increasingly divorced from the original teachings of Christ and the Laws it led to many asemblies going off down the wrong path. As so it has continued upto the present day.

    The modern nation of Israel would have been better called Judea. In fact it was a discussed topic at the time of the nations resurrection.

    A little off topic perhaps, but I believe it is important to differentiate between the children of Israel otherwise it is difficult to understand what the Word of God is revealing to us.

    Regards

    John

    • Thank you. Exactly what to make of the Old Testament is difficult. I later presented the Sermon on the Mount exactly as it is because that is where my sense of faith, the Anabaptists or Amish/Mennonite/Brethren comes from. No matter what, I think that seeing it all through the grace of Jesus has to be a starting point – which is to say starting with love and decency. If someone or some faith is opposed to homosexuality I can understand this, but I cannot understand being nasty.

      • Math. 5.17 “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. 18 “For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.

        The Old Testament is the foundation of the New. As Jesus makes plain. The Old Testament was not only written for the descendants of the Jewish tribes, but for all of the children of Israel. Much of the New can not be understood without an understanding of the Old.
        It was Jesus Christ, Himself, as the WORD, in the beginning with God, who made all things.
        John 1, 1 thro 5

        The Bible would not include an Old Testament if it was not relevant.
        Many people appear to believe that the Nerw Testament nullified the Old. Nothing could be further from the truth.

        Regards
        John

      • There is a great debate that groups of man-made religion confuse the light and Truth.

        Jesus did fulfill the Laws of Moses. A continuation or replacement. Is a personal human perspective. Not light and Truth of you Self-Realization, the result of you practice. Being a Spirit. John 4:24 God is a Sprit and must be worshiped in Spirt. You are what you do: righteousness is being Christ. Not human characteristics that have modern women, color, races, age and place of origin in matter consciousness at ODD with the light and energy of the Universe organic living or inorganic is all atoms and the Sub-Atom light within the Atom. Human, the flesh/matter has to be Born Again from within not a Human Nation State, church or religion . Only you can self realize you flesh to Spirit. “Deny yourself, Pick up YOUR CROS and FOLLOW ME (to the Spiritual World.

      • I follow only the “red” letter and practice the Perfection of Will, Perfection of Single-Pointed Concentration and Perfecting the Deep Meditation of the Cosmic Vibration of the Universe. Not a church or a religion both man-made. Becoming Spirit. Bottom Up, Not TOP DOWN Matthew 5:45.

        Again we are all on our own journey. There is no one journey.

    • John 3:13 And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.

      Righteousness right Spiritual Behavior is not BEING a super Jesus. Living better flesh. Surely not bad behavior bad flesh. It is becoming Spirit because of the Science of Nature and the creation/existence that all is Light/Energy/Spirit. Bad Evil Behavior is ignorance of Light and Truth. That cannot be created or destroyed, Why living for Spirit not mammon or man-made. Look what man has done.. A caveman with Drones… not Clubs. Killing weaker Power and Wealth.

      Romans 8 is the paraphrase of Matthew 5 and 6. How to be Spirit not Flesh

      Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

      Romans 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

      Romans 8:3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:

      Romans 8:4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

      Romans 8:5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.

      Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

      Romans 8:10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.

      Romans 8:11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.

      Romans 8:12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.

      Romans 8:13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.

      Romans 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

      John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

      John 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.

      John 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

      John 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

      John 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

      John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

      John 1:13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

      John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

      John 1:17 For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.

      John 1:18 No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.

      John 1:32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.

      John 1:33 And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.

      John 1:34 And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.

  6. Pingback: What Did Jesus Teach? And Why? | Barataria - The work of Erik Hare

  7. Pingback: Sermon on the Mount | Barataria - The work of Erik Hare

    • Who cares. Judge the TREE by the FRUIT it bars is human behavior. Result of being Spirit or human flesh. Individual journeys are the result. Are you FLESH or Spirit.

      Maslow speak of human hierarchy of needs each human has.

      1990’s adapted Hierarchy of Needs including Transcendence needs
      1. Biological and Physiological needs – air, food, drink, shelter, warmth, sex, sleep, etc.
      2. Safety needs – protection from elements, security, order, law, limits, stability, etc.
      3. Belongingness and Love needs – work group, family, affection, relationships, etc.
      4. Esteem needs – self-esteem, achievement, mastery, independence, status, dominance, prestige, managerial responsibility, etc.
      5. Cognitive needs – knowledge, meaning, etc.
      6. Aesthetic needs – appreciation and search for beauty, balance, form, etc.
      7. Self-Actualisation needs – realising personal potential, self-fulfillment, seeking personal growth and peak experiences.
      8. Transcendence needs – helping others to achieve self actualisation.

      My 8: Born in perfected body and Again in Spirit/Light/Energy. Some choose to help others like Christ, Buddha, Krishna, Lao Sui, Spinoza, Babaji, etc. others save their own soul from flesh.

  8. I personally don’t call myself an “Evangelical” just for the sake of the fact that I prefer the term Christian (or Nazarene) only, however, doctrinally, I suppose one could say I am indeed Evangelical/Protestant, whichever term you would like to use.

    Let me begin by saying that reading through this post was hard for me. Not because I was convicted, but because there were so many errors and misunderstandings of even basic Christian doctrines, I don’t even know what to say.

    “The Bible is absolutely silent on the topic of abortion. It simply does not appear anywhere in it, at all. Where this is the single largest driving force in the life of Evangelicals, there is no basis in scripture for their stand.”

    How about the dozens of Scriptures that forbid the shedding of innocent blood? How about the Scriptures that clearly and emphatically teach a human life is completely present in the womb? Or how about the fact that God Himself is the one who knits together each human life in the womb for His own purposes, which we have no right to kill. Saying “the Bible doesn’t mention a 21st century practice of killing a fetus” is not only a misleading, it’s embarrassing.

    “Yes, prayer in public is specifically called out by Jesus himself as something for hypocrites.”

    Are you serious on this one? The verse is clearly referring to those who pray for the sake of being seen so people would think they were very righteous and devout people. People who make a spectacle out of praying. What does this verse have to do with children in school? Please do tell me.

    “These laws were generally tossed aside by Christian tradition, which is why they are not practiced today. ”

    No, they’re not. The Mosaic covenant was fulfilled in Christ, but there are still universal moral truths which transcend specific covenants. Lying was wrong before Moses, and is still wrong today. Same sex relations are specifically repeated in the New Testament as still wrong.

    “The problem is a simple one – the Sabbath is on Saturday. Christians chose to move it to Sunday”

    No, they didn’t. The Sabbath was always Saturday, sunday is an entirely different day having to do with the Christian tradition of meeting on the day Christ rose, it was not a day set apart for rest.

    Please, before writing a lengthy article attacking a group of people whose teachings you have no desire to understand, do a little bit of studying.

    Sincerely-

    N

    • I definitely agree with you on many of these points. However, I do understand where Erik is coming from. He bases most of his statements on what Jesus said rather than the rest of the Bible. I think the error here comes in saying that the only important things are what Jesus said. We were given the whole Bible for a reason, and a huge part of that Bible is the Old Testament. While what Jesus said is important, things that God said are important too, and that is easy to forget in an age of feel-good Christianity. Jesus did change a lot of things, but that doesn’t mean that the rest of the Bible is unimportant, and I think that is where the misunderstanding comes in in this post.

    • You explained this very well. I felt the same way while reading. The verses were taken out of context. The other text in the bible support the words of Jesus. If you only go off of the words in the bible that come from Jesus, then i’m not sure there is belief that the bible was inspired by the Spirit. If there is no belief in the whole bible, how can we believe only certain pieces (Jesus’ words). The other text is there for a reason.

  9. New Testament of Fulfilling the LAW. Born again to See and Enter the World of Spirit, from flesh to Spirit (like Jesus’ flesh to Christ. John 15 My Commandment to you is “love on another” and you are my friend not my servant.

  10. I think the message of the Bible is that we are all sinners in need of the saving grace of Jesus Christ. In regards to the rest, we all fail repeatedly to do what Christ tells us and we all misunderstand what he wants us to do. While it’s important to discuss these differences and to correct our brothers and sisters in love, cutting off an entire limb of the Church seems more hurtful than helpful. Christ is the head and he decides who is part of the body, not us. Let’s leave that judgment where it belongs and focus on fellowship, love, gentle correction, and especially following Jesus Christ together. After all, someone somewhere probably thinks you or I are not Christians because of something we believe too.

    • I know for a fact that many people do not consider me to be a Christian. I have been told this directly. And I do not begrudge anyone their beliefs, certainly. But when they say their beliefs came from Jesus and they most certainly did not? What should we say?

      I see nothing wrong with asserting that those who do not follow what Jesus taught are not actually Christian. This does not condemn them to Hell or anything like that. It simply means that wherever they got their beliefs it certainly wasn’t from Jesus. And I think we can easily show that.

      • But being a Christian isn’t about what we do, it’s about who we follow. We can say to them ‘what you’re doing isn’t in keeping with the one whom we follow’. But none of us ever succeeds at that all the time. So when we say someone isn’t a Christian because they’ve failed at following Christ’s commands, we’re just accusing ourselves of the same thing. People are not Christian who do no follow Jesus Christ as their Lord and saviour. Apart from that, we’re in this together. We’re a family called to love and compassion. Is it possible for us to vehemently disagree with one another and still remember our love for each other? Even if that love is out of obligation to our Lord Jesus?

      • I’m not trying to minimize the pain and frustration of hearing followers of Christ say things we disagree with or that we believe hurt other people. I understand that, and I’ve been hurt by my brothers and sisters in Christ who say many of the things in your blog post. But we are Christians and we persevere in love, not by alienating ourselves from those who’ve hurt us. Jesus came to save the world, who are we to try to dictate who qualifies for that salvation?

  11. Erik thanks for your post. I do not call myself a Christian but I read the Christian scriptures and I believe in God. I particularly like the four gospels where Jesus speaks. For me, Jesus speaks about turning away from the materialistic life and being born again in the living waters of spirit. Jesus spent 40 days in the desert and then was tempted by Satan by what is in the world – Jesus rejects Satan – it cannot be any clearer to me that Jesus was about this turning away from the material world and a return to spirit. I find the Evangelical support for Trump to be a clear sign of their infatuation with the world; they seem to have nothing to do with the teaching of Jesus. It seems as if they made Jesus into God – they are followers of a God they named Jesus, violating the first of the 10 commandments. Jesus was all about the Good above the Truth – as the Pharisees practice their religion to form (the truth) but do not hold the good in their hearts.

  12. Pingback: Matthew 10:16-23 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Sent Forth as Sheep among Wolves | Belgian Biblestudents - Belgische Bijbelstudenten

  13. Having been a Baptist minister (and “born again”) for almost 20 years and now considering myself a follower of “spirituality”, I see many things differently. First, there is the authority of the bible. We give authority to things or people; think that through. Some would like us to believe that the bible is “God’s word”, but that idea is something that some human beings decided to believe. I still believe the bible is very helpful in many ways, but it’s a HUGE assumption to declare it “God’s word” simply because of religious history.

    Next there is the foundational belief in the Fall/Redemption. It’s important to realize that much of the bible is composed of stories. I now see the beginnings of Genesis as nothing more than human beings’ attempts to explain the “human condition”. Why a “fall”? Why not this is simply the way we are? Matthew Fox’s “Original Blessing” does a wonderful job in explaining this. Of course, this puts the role and purpose of Jesus in a completely different light. Let’s just say that I now believe that Jesus was a the great example and not the great exception. The one who is called the “light of the world” also told us that we are the “light of the world”. Ultimately, it’s about following Jesus, who told us about the kingdom of God within and living by faith vs adherence to a particular belief system and a particular church. It’s about the God inside and not the God out there somewhere.

    Regarding a “red letter” bible, we have assumed that somehow, through divine inspiration that what we have are actually the words of Jesus; a HUGE assumption. How many of us accurately remember what people said many years or decades earlier? The Gospel narratives were not taped interviews. We have declared that God intervened and gave us essentially exactly what Jesus said. People did not make mistakes in memory? Stories that were told were told absolutely accurately and then passed down again and again accurately? No one had bias and remembered what they wanted to remember and did not change the story a bit like we all do? So, a group of men hundreds of years later, with doctrines and theology already established (of course, there was an East vs West church difference) somehow, under God’s direction gave us exactly (or almost) what God wanted? That’s a belief that is part of a system and not faith. Then, people debate about what it says “in the Greek” when Jesus spoke in Aramaic. We have just a “decent” idea of what Jesus said and was about, but we made it into churches with doctrines and beliefs that must be adhered to for “admission” (i say that with a bit of sarcasm).

    Yes, we humans are far from perfect, but we are learning more and more about our minds and how we work. Science, which seeks truth and is willing to change “beliefs”, unlike most churches which hold on dearly to the “old, old story” seems much more spiritual. Churches seem to put their faith in their beliefs vs faith in the God who inside. It’s about human responsibility and not so much a belief system. Jesus expected us to be the light of the world and shine so that people would see goodness and there for glorify God. Most would prefer to find “security” in a belief system vs being a responsible follower of the light inside.

    Hey, if you disagree and love your belief system, fine with me. Even if you declare me “not a christian”, that’s OK too. I’ll respect your beliefs and most importantly, you.

    Philip Bourdon

  14. Very well thought out and stated. I am all about Grace. It is the true gift we have to give to each other. My family worships in a Methodist church. There’s a very strong sense of Grace there. Gonna pass your blog along to my son who is training to be a local pastor at a small Methodist church here in Utah. His blog is The Path of Grace. And thanks, btw, for the follow. (https://brandonlbc.wordpress.com/)

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