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FireDragon76

I'm done with church

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I finally came to the realization a few months ago that I'm done with my church (conservative ELCA congregation).  I do not agree with evangelicalism approach to spirituality anymore, even in a relatively tolerant, quasi-mainline form.  There's too much potential toxic religious ideas there.

So, I'm not sure what I do now... if I consider myself Buddhist or just become a religious none.  It's a new thing for me.   I accept the conclusions, more or less, of the Jesus Seminar, especially Marcus Borg's views on the subject.  I'm not a pure skeptic, but I am a pragmatist and since I don't have a realist view of God, I would need a really good reason to remain identified as a Christian.

I suppose my worldview is Jungian, something closer to that.  I'm not a materialist, nor am I inclined towards scientism.  I just don't accept the dogmatism and anti-intellectualism that's part and parcel with evangelicalism.

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1 hour ago, FireDragon76 said:

I finally came to the realization a few months ago that I'm done with my church (conservative ELCA congregation).  I do not agree with evangelicalism approach to spirituality anymore, even in a relatively tolerant, quasi-mainline form.  There's too much potential toxic religious ideas there.

So, I'm not sure what I do now... if I consider myself Buddhist or just become a religious none.  It's a new thing for me.   I accept the conclusions, more or less, of the Jesus Seminar, especially Marcus Borg's views on the subject.  I'm not a pure skeptic, but I am a pragmatist and since I don't have a realist view of God, I would need a really good reason to remain identified as a Christian.

I suppose my worldview is Jungian, something closer to that.  I'm not a materialist, nor am I inclined towards scientism.  I just don't accept the dogmatism and anti-intellectualism that's part and parcel with evangelicalism.

Theology is good for getting around things that are barriers to faith but you are never going to find a church that is a perfect fit.  Look for a good bible study.  Messianic jews have some great ones.

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Many of us here have been through such changes also.  Religion and any beliefs concerning God really are a personal perception.  I hope that you find whatever it is you are looking for and my only advice, if you are even asking for any, is to relax and not feel the need to identify a box for yourself that you have to fit into.

Peace to you, whatever that may entail.

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I recently found this video.  There's some interesting food for thought:

 

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=what+is+causing+decline+in+ELCA%3f&view=detail&mid=8A7DB7202884B61943988A7DB7202884B6194398&FORM=VIRE

 

It's good that some people are thinking about these issues.  I know I have.  What's frustrating is when you are in a congregation where the pastor simply doesn't care about the relevance of the religion.  That is offensive to somebody like me who values their own time.  Coddling octagenarians is all fine and dandy but misunderstanding and refusing to listen to younger people who come to church is simply unacceptable, it's organizational suicide.

 

Plus, I'm not sure that the trend towards individualism can be halted, or that it even should be.  People have just lost faith in the Christian narrative of the world.  There are some real alternatives to the loneliness Pr. Baumann talks about, such as practicing mindfulness, that doesn't require a community.  Perhaps that is the spirituality of the third millenium.  We have to find new practices and new stories that center our lives and that cannot be swindled away by con-men.

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There comes a time in a journey such as yours where church organizations may no longer provide you with that which you require for spiritual growth. There are many others just like you. This short sermon/writing might be of some consolation to you. Here  ---------> Click on title below

 

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" The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance."

Allen Watts

 

PS. BTW , i disagree with some of the things mentioned in the video including Americans giving to charities and philanthropy which has risen , not declined in last few years. Also Volunteering here in the US is at record high levels.

Edited by JosephM
added PS

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I have never been church religious, FireDragon … so it is not something I miss. It never made sense to me. I lost belief in any sort of god almost forty years ago. Don't miss that belief either.

While I see many parallels of my path to that of Buddhism, Buddhism is not my path … though I would recommend Stephen Batchelor's flavour, if that is what you are after

I volunteer. Married for coming up to 44 years.

Trying to get a grip on the vagaries of reality. Anyway if you are interested here is my more lengthy take on religion

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On 12/27/2019 at 10:22 PM, Burl said:

Theology is good for getting around things that are barriers to faith but you are never going to find a church that is a perfect fit.  Look for a good bible study.  Messianic jews have some great ones.

Messianics in my experience are generally preaching a fundamentalist evangelicalism, not appreciably different from the sort of thing I've already come to reject, just packaged with Judaica.

 

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20 minutes ago, FireDragon76 said:

Messianics in my experience are generally preaching a fundamentalist evangelicalism, not appreciably different from the sort of thing I've already come to reject, just packaged with Judaica.

 

My experience is “Jews for Jesus” types can be like that, but the Messianic firmly deny the divinity of Jesus and their OT viewpoint is different.

But whatever.  Just a suggestion.

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On 12/27/2019 at 10:16 PM, FireDragon76 said:

I finally came to the realization a few months ago that I'm done with my church (conservative ELCA congregation).  I do not agree with evangelicalism approach to spirituality anymore, even in a relatively tolerant, quasi-mainline form.  There's too much potential toxic religious ideas there.

So, I'm not sure what I do now... if I consider myself Buddhist or just become a religious none.  It's a new thing for me.   I accept the conclusions, more or less, of the Jesus Seminar, especially Marcus Borg's views on the subject.  I'm not a pure skeptic, but I am a pragmatist and since I don't have a realist view of God, I would need a really good reason to remain identified as a Christian.

I suppose my worldview is Jungian, something closer to that.  I'm not a materialist, nor am I inclined towards scientism.  I just don't accept the dogmatism and anti-intellectualism that's part and parcel with evangelicalism.

I love that you have done with church. Is time to follow only Jesus and the author that have written the Bible through God. I can answer all qustions Biblical, because by digging deep in God's word He have open my mind. We are FEW that can answered all qustions Biblical. 

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13 hours ago, Pipiripi said:

I love that you have done with church. Is time to follow only Jesus and the author that have written the Bible through God. I can answer all qustions Biblical, because by digging deep in God's word He have open my mind. We are FEW that can answered all qustions Biblical. 

But Pipiripi you must know that the Bible, specifically the NT was created by those 'in the community(s) of the Church." There was never a Bible without Church. Both those communities that created what we call the OT and the communities that created the NT believed they wrote 'through' God. This seems a false separation of Church and Bible.

P can you explain your background for me, I'm simply curious. I'll also be glad to share mine.

But heres a Biblical question: which genealogy is correct Matthew or Luke?

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Okay, I'm gonna used this cine for you my brother. Sorry for my English. Put yourself in this picture.

There was a car accident that had occurred right in your face. You have seen exactly how it has happend. You have seen someone flying out the car. I was in the living room and I have heard the squelching of the tires, then I have heard the noise of the crash. When I saw the accident I saw some one in the street. 

Now there is a third person who was far away he heard but don't see nothing how it have occurred. He ask me what happens and I told him my version. An other person that don't heard and have seen nothing was passing by and ask you what has happened? You tell this person exactly how it has happend.  That person go to the. News paper and write your story. The one that has talk to me are going to the radio and tell exactly how I tell him.

So, both is right they have tell what they have heard what (me and you) have tell.

Let's go to the Bible. Matthew, Mark, and John was living with Jesus they have heard all that Jesus has told them. Sometimes Jesus was only with one of them or two teaching them. Luke is not an Apostle of Jesus. Luke is a doctor and he have investigated that all what they say about Jesus is right. He was in the service of the king. He has wrote the book of Acts. Why he is in the Bible, His conclusion is that all he heard and see is true. And he became one of them.

I hope that you have understand. Don't follow who has wrote or not. If it was against our Mighty God, we cannot find it in the Bible like many others that they have found after the Bible was completed. WHAT WE HAVE IS ENOUGH FOR OUR SALVATION. 

Let me hear from you. I answer all qustions Biblical. 

Edited by Pipiripi

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2 hours ago, Pipiripi said:

Okay, I'm gonna used this cine for you my brother. Sorry for my English. Put yourself in this picture.

There was a car accident that had occurred right in your face. You have seen exactly how it has happend. You have seen someone flying out the car. I was in the living room and I have heard the squelching of the tires, then I have heard the noise of the crash. When I saw the accident I saw some one in the street. 

I like your example P.

However given your example I am the actual witness and you never saw the accident but only the aftermath so you would have to include in your version that you did not see the accident and you only have partial and very limited information.

Now, if one of us said it was a car and in reality it was a motorcycle, there is a right and wrong. If one of us said it was 8 people in the car and it was a couple on a motorcycle, one of us is wrong. If one of us traces the line of Jesus through Joesph to establish his credentials as a 'son of David' or from the house of David and the other does it through Mary, we can't both be right. And if Joesph is not the natural father of Jesus why would anyone bother to trace that lineage to David for Jesus would not be a blood relative? Plus where did they get their information? Couldn't be Jesus because he would know and tell the same story to both and it couldn't be God the Father because he too would know and only speaks the truth - so the stories in both case would have to be the same since they got the information from the same source.

In your example, both are not right and one has only limited information.

 

Now, we don't know for sure if Matthew, Mark, Luke and John were the actual authors and it is questionable if one of them actually heard Jesus. As an example, was Matthew the disciple? Was Luke the secretary to Paul - Paul who never met the historical Jesus? Was John writing in 90-100 CE alive to have heard Jesus 70 years ago? Possibly but was the John of the Gospel the beloved disciple?

 

Thanks P

 

Edited by thormas

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Pipiripi

Where did you learn the Bible? Was it through your church, was it a formal education, was it self learned? All answers are fine just curious. Mine was first through my church and religious schooling then more formally in higher level schools but mostly, later in life, through my own 'self-learning' by reading and listening to experts in the field - and it continues today.

 

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9 hours ago, thormas said:

I like your example P.

However given your example I am the actual witness and you never saw the accident but only the aftermath so you would have to include in your version that you did not see the accident and you only have partial and very limited information.

Now, if one of us said it was a car and in reality it was a motorcycle, there is a right and wrong. If one of us said it was 8 people in the car and it was a couple on a motorcycle, one of us is wrong. If one of us traces the line of Jesus through Joesph to establish his credentials as a 'son of David' or from the house of David and the other does it through Mary, we can't both be right. And if Joesph is not the natural father of Jesus why would anyone bother to trace that lineage to David for Jesus would not be a blood relative? Plus where did they get their information? Couldn't be Jesus because he would know and tell the same story to both and it couldn't be God the Father because he too would know and only speaks the truth - so the stories in both case would have to be the same since they got the information from the same source.

In your example, both are not right and one has only limited information.

 

Now, we don't know for sure if Matthew, Mark, Luke and John were the actual authors and it is questionable if one of them actually heard Jesus. As an example, was Matthew the disciple? Was Luke the secretary to Paul - Paul who never met the historical Jesus? Was John writing in 90-100 CE alive to have heard Jesus 70 years ago? Possibly but was the John of the Gospel the beloved disciple?

 

Thanks P

 

My brother for you to better know me is to see my belief. end-times-prophecy.org

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12 hours ago, thormas said:

Pipiripi

Where did you learn the Bible? Was it through your church, was it a formal education, was it self learned? All answers are fine just curious. Mine was first through my church and religious schooling then more formally in higher level schools but mostly, later in life, through my own 'self-learning' by reading and listening to experts in the field - and it continues today.

 

As this thread is FireDragon76's thread about changing views on church and spirituality, please start a new thread if you would like to know more about Piripi's background and sharing yours, as it is not in context with this thread.  Much appreciated in advance.

Piriripi,as you are new here, please understand that we try to keep threads roughly on track with the theme they start with rather than digress into other messages and lines of discussion.  Please also consider starting another thread if you wish to convey other messages that are a different subject matter to the intent of the thread.  Thanks also, in advance.

Paul

(As Administrator)

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There you go. Pipiripi, I guess the appropriate context, if you care to provide some background, is the Intro section where we can 'share a little background.' But if you want to start a new thread, that's fine also.

 

Edited by thormas

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Pipiripi.

I realized that I provided a little background on my intro a number of years ago. So it is there and I look forward to yours if you care to share.

 

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16 hours ago, PaulS said:

As this thread is FireDragon76's thread about changing views on church and spirituality, please start a new thread if you would like to know more about Piripi's background and sharing yours, as it is not in context with this thread.  Much appreciated in advance.

Piriripi,as you are new here, please understand that we try to keep threads roughly on track with the theme they start with rather than digress into other messages and lines of discussion.  Please also consider starting another thread if you wish to convey other messages that are a different subject matter to the intent of the thread.  Thanks also, in advance.

Paul

(As Administrator)

Thanks Paul.

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4 hours ago, thormas said:

Well P, we are at the end of the road.

I have asked questions and now you direct me to an 'end-time-prophecy' site. I see your belief but it is not one I share nor one I am interested in exploring.

I have no interest. What you're presenting is a direct opposite of my understanding of God, how God 'works' and the meaning of revelation and prophecy.

I have never looked to the book of Revelations for prophetic wisdom. I don't read it as prophecy but as commentary on its time now long past.

4 hours ago, thormas said:

Well P, we are at the end of the road.

I have asked questions and now you direct me to an 'end-time-prophecy' site. I see your belief but it is not one I share nor one I am interested in exploring.

I have no interest. What you're presenting is a direct opposite of my understanding of God, how God 'works' and the meaning of revelation and prophecy.

I have never looked to the book of Revelations for prophetic wisdom. I don't read it as prophecy but as commentary on its time now long past.

 

 

 

Okay, how can I answered your questions and you don't interest what is the meaning of the book of Revelation. It is impossible for you to understand without an open mind the book of Revelation. It is full with symbolic languages. That's why you cannot undestand and give up living for God. You will never come to an understanding because you are not interested. This is not a progressive Christians. Just let an other person that really have interested in what time we living in.

 

 

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1 hour ago, thormas said:

 

I have no questions for you P.

I have spent years studying the Bible: simply because I don't look to Revelations for prophecy does not mean I have never studied it or that I don't understand it.

 

Why then debates on somthing that is irrelevant to you? Talking about something that you don't have interested anymore. I call this a wasting of time speaking about somthing that doesn't and cannot make you happy. I have the real Jesus for you bro. 

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5 hours ago, thormas said:

I'm not debating but, just for the record, what is irrelevant to me is not the Bible but your interpretation of the Bible and Revelations.

As for Jesus: have him, never lost him, don't need a literalist interpretation of him.

 

I know that  you cannot answer anybody questions. I want you to teach me. What mean a woman in symbolic language in the Bible? What is an Archangel? What means water?  My brother your problem is because you don't know, and you want nobody also to know. I'm not here by my own. God has send me here,specially for those that are for many years really want to know in what time we are living. Go read Matthew 24. It is exactly what that you are doing. Can you preach the Three Angels Messages? I think NOT!! Don't you know that it is a warning message for salvation of our soul?  Do you know what is written in 2 Thimoty 3:10-15 verse 13 is for you my friend. You are fighting against God, not the true Christians. Ephesians 6:10-17. Do you have the ARMOUR OF GOD? I'm think NOT, otherwise now you are helping us helping saving life for Christ. Just the way that He have command  us. 

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Several posts of Thormas' and Pipiripi's have been hidden as they not in context of the original post and are better suited to Personal Message or a new thread, despite previous Admin request.  Thormas & Pipripi - please adhere to Admin instructions.

Paul (As Admin)

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Not sure what you're talking about since the posts are gone and I agreed (with you) that a new thread begin by P or back in the Intro section was the appropriate location?? So not sure what instructions you mean.

Edited by thormas

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14 minutes ago, thormas said:

Not sure what you're talking about since the posts are gone and I agreed (with you) that a new thread begin by P or back in the Intro section was the appropriate location?? So not sure what instructions you mean.

Your four posts and Pipiripi's three had nothing to do with the original post.  You both continued to digress even after the instruction - it's that simple.

Paul

(As Admin)

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