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Review Of Book Ten Wrong Things....


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Off and on since the end of January I have been writting out an outline on my review on the book, "Ten Wrong Things i Learned From A Conservative Church." I have written this from the view of a Progressive Christian XJW. The results seem to be that this project is turning out to be HUGE. Infact, it's ended up like I am writting my own book in response to the author's. It's going to take me a long time. But here's the outline that i have created so far....

 

Ten Wrong Things Reviewed By a Progressive XJW

By BeachOfEden

 

CONTENTS

 

 

Introduction

 

Issue #1 The 'Difference' Between Inspired Orginal Bible Manuscripts vs. All Modern Day Bibles

and 'Claiming' That They Are 'Inerrant.'

 

Issue #2 Examing Liberals Fear of the Ransom Belief &The Reasons Behind It.

 

Issues #3, and #4 The Teaching That Jesus Is Thee Highway To Salvation &

The Conservative Church [JW's 'Organization'] Own Thee Only OffRamp

That Leads To It.

 

Issue #5A Conservative Christians

(Fundamental Protestants, Non-Liberal Catholics & The JW 'Organization)

Issue Against The Use of Contemporary Sounding Worhsip Music

During Religious Services, & Against The "Seeker-Sensitive" Approuch,

& Basic Phobia Of Too Much Joy, Fun & Recreation.

 

Issue #5B Understanding the Serious Problem of Alcohol Abuse Amoung

JW's & The Need For A/A

 

Issue #6 Understanding Progressive Christian XJWs & X-Catholics Fear of

Participating in Communion. ( Explaining What The 10 Wrong Things Author

Does Not Understand About XJWs & XCatholics Uncertanity About Communion

 

Issue#7 The Problem of Contridictive Sexism In Fundamental Protestantism,

Non-Liberal Catholicsm & Jehovah's Witnesses.

 

Issue #8 The Issue of Homosexuality. The Problems of Conservative Faith

Groups Trying To Marry The Opposite Sex. The AIDS Crises.

 

Issue# 9 The 10 Things Author Embraces The Resurrection Of Christ as Literal...

But Dismisses All Other Mircles in the Bible as Mere 'Myths'. Why?

 

Issue #10 Conservative Judeo-Christian Faith Groups Always Preach About

Freedom Through Christ...Yet They Teach Inslavement Of Morbid Fear

Of God. When Hellfire, Getting "Left Behind," or Armageddon Are Used

Fear Tactics Tools For Minipulation & Spiritual Abuse

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Well of course I'm not an ex-JW (I think as an ex-CS I prob. share some of your concerns and not others and of course have a whole set of my own).

 

But I had a few comments on some of these:

>Fundamental Protestants, Non-Liberal Catholics & The JW 'Organization)

Issue Against The Use of Contemporary Sounding Worhsip Music

During Religious Services, & Against The "Seeker-Sensitive" Approuch,

& Basic Phobia Of Too Much Joy, Fun & Recreation.

 

I thought that Fundamentalist were the first to really use the Seeker Sensitive type approach with contemporary music. (In fact I think "Seeker Sensitive" churches are exclusively fundamentalist, though I might be wrong?). I think some more liberal churches have their own contemporary programs, if they are large enough (the UMC down the street has quite a large one). OTOH, smaller churches since they can't have both, will tend to keep the old. After all they do have older members who have been active for years. I go to a UCC which is pretty liberal/progress. We do not have a comtemporary worship, however, elements of more contemporary things are brought in. The New Century hymnal which does the inclusive language to the hilt, well it does have hymns from non-European countries, which I think is kind of neat. We have liturgical dance (which you can keep, imo, but there it is). We have a permenant place for "young people's time", which naturally becomes a source of some pretty funny stuff (a couple weeks ago we had the kids acting out "square land" and "circle land" or something on a very funny little bit on diversity).

 

>Issue #6 Understanding Progressive Christian XJWs & X-Catholics Fear of

Participating in Communion. ( Explaining What The 10 Wrong Things Author

Does Not Understand About XJWs & XCatholics Uncertanity About Communion

 

Well I don't know about this personally, but this did come up in the new members class. Apparently some ex-Catholics can not get over the idea that the bread and wine (or grape juice in our case) are literally the blood and body of Jesus. I'm sure if they would be able to accommodate to the more Protestant type sentiment they would be able to participate but we know that for many people conversion to a different belief system doesn't come in one big jump. I don't know that that explains everybody, perhaps not JWs. Perhaps if there is no communion service they don't quite know how to integrate it. CS do not have any ritual elements, but I was quite happy for them and just felt very comfortable since I thought it was a missing piece in my life. But some people might feel differently and feel fear over something different.

 

>Issue#7 The Problem of Contridictive Sexism In Fundamental Protestantism,

Non-Liberal Catholicsm & Jehovah's Witnesses.

 

Funny thing, but CS even though it was founded by a woman has rampant sexism. Men are almost always "first readers" (the closest there is to any clergy), while women are almost always "second readers". I understand that until fairly lately all major positions were typically occuppied by men. I think all this just mirrors society in general. (Of course it is institutionalized in many Fundamentalists and Catholic churches where women do not hold places due to supposed Biblical injunctions. Or say the fact that Jesus happened to be male.)

 

 

>ssue #8 The Issue of Homosexuality. The Problems of Conservative Faith

Groups Trying To Marry The Opposite Sex. The AIDS Crises.

 

J. Wallis made the case that homosexual marriage is kind of a scapegoat for all that is wrong with the family. 50% divorce rate, blame it on gays; single parent households, high teen pregnancy rate-- it's all gays! I also think that despite what they say some of them do show rampant homophobia. I mean those that are obsessed with it and mention it over and over like some type of mantra.

 

Of course AIDS isn't much of a homosexual crisis any more. The largest spread of AIDS is in Sub-Saharan Africa. But to the extent it IS a crisis, I think some Right wingers see it as punishment. I don't know what it is in Africa then.

 

 

--des

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Off and on since the end of January I have been writting out an outline on my review on the book, "Ten Wrong Things i Learned From A Conservative Church." I have written this from the view of a Progressive Christian XJW. The results seem to be that this project is turning out to be HUGE. Infact, it's ended up like I am writting my own book in response to the author's.  It's going to take me a long time.  But here's the outline that i have created so far....

 

Ten Wrong Things Reviewed By a Progressive XJW

                                                                                                                      By BeachOfEden

 

                                                    CONTENTS

 

 

Introduction

 

Issue #1 The 'Difference' Between Inspired Orginal Bible Manuscripts vs. All Modern Day Bibles

and 'Claiming' That They Are 'Inerrant.'

 

Issue #2 Examing Liberals Fear of the Ransom Belief &The Reasons Behind It.

 

Issues #3, and #4 The Teaching That Jesus Is Thee Highway To Salvation &

The Conservative Church [JW's 'Organization'] Own Thee Only OffRamp

That Leads To It.

 

Issue #5A Conservative Christians

(Fundamental Protestants, Non-Liberal Catholics & The JW 'Organization)

Issue Against The Use of Contemporary Sounding Worhsip Music

During Religious Services, & Against The "Seeker-Sensitive" Approuch,

& Basic Phobia Of Too Much Joy, Fun & Recreation.

 

Issue #5B Understanding the Serious Problem of Alcohol Abuse Amoung

JW's & The Need For A/A

 

Issue #6 Understanding Progressive Christian XJWs & X-Catholics Fear of

Participating in Communion. ( Explaining What The 10 Wrong Things Author

Does Not Understand About XJWs & XCatholics Uncertanity About Communion

 

Issue#7 The Problem of Contridictive Sexism In Fundamental Protestantism,

Non-Liberal Catholicsm & Jehovah's Witnesses.

 

Issue #8 The Issue of Homosexuality. The Problems of Conservative Faith

Groups Trying To Marry The Opposite Sex. The AIDS Crises.

 

Issue# 9 The 10 Things Author Embraces The Resurrection Of Christ as Literal...

But Dismisses All Other Mircles in the Bible as Mere 'Myths'. Why?

 

Issue #10 Conservative Judeo-Christian Faith Groups Always Preach About

Freedom Through Christ...Yet They Teach Inslavement Of Morbid Fear

Of God. When Hellfire, Getting "Left Behind," or Armageddon Are Used

Fear Tactics Tools For Minipulation & Spiritual Abuse

BeachofEden:

 

Great start, I welcome the result. IMO the Bible to these people is the 1909 Publication,"The Fundamentals", not The Bible as we know it today.

 

The Bible and "The Fundamentals" IMO both preach our separation from God also which is another "Wrong" for your research.

 

Jeep

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"Well of course I'm not an ex-JW (I think as an ex-CS I prob. share some of your concerns and not others and of course have a whole set of my own)."

 

Yes, I believe in mnan cases here CS as well as SDA could well relate to many of this, and perhaps i could mention this in there.:)

 

"I thought that Fundamentalist were the first to really use the Seeker Sensitive type approach with contemporary music. (In fact I think "Seeker Sensitive" churches are exclusively fundamentalist, though I might be wrong?)."

 

What I would like to examine is that I believe using the "Seeker-Senstive" concept is a good idea...'if'....it not use as a tool to mass fear tactics or hidden bigotries. In other words...that i see no problem is making grape flavored medicine unless the grape flavor is meant to mask the fact that there is poision underneath. :P

 

"I think some more liberal churches have their own contemporary programs, if they are large enough (the UMC down the street has quite a large one). OTOH, smaller churches since they can't have both, will tend to keep the old."

 

I attended a UMC for Easter and I was impressed because it was both contemporary and Progressive..though indeed small..30 people I think..but they did a great contemporary version of the old hymn "How Great Thou Art." :)

 

"After all they do have older members who have been active for years. I go to a UCC which is pretty liberal/progress. We do not have a comtemporary worship, however, elements of more contemporary things are brought in."

 

The Progressive churches like UMC and Presbyterian have been very slow to this..and thus why there groups are small..but hopefully will grow over time.

 

"Well I don't know about this personally, but this did come up in the new members class. Apparently some ex-Catholics can not get over the idea that the bread and wine (or grape juice in our case) are literally the blood and body of Jesus. I'm sure if they would be able to accommodate to the more Protestant type sentiment they would be able to participate but we know that for many people conversion to a different belief system doesn't come in one big jump. I don't know that that explains everybody, perhaps not JWs."

 

This is very good that you explain this FACT about Catholics so that those who have not been raised Catholics would understand. Also I talked to someone who said another reason as an X-Catholics feel uncomfortable about communion is because Catholics make such a big deal about only serving communion to worthy Catholics..that once a person does not want to be catholic anymore than everytime they think of communion they think of embracing the Catholic church and it's views which they do not want to do.

 

In JW the belief is that each person chooses in their heart which type of after life he or she best desires and whether they desire a non-organic/supernatural relm or an earthly organic paradise. They make a big deal about if you don;t know what you are doing then you might be saying you wish to spend enternity in the version of paradise that is non-earthly..and to me I always picture this is a version of paradise devoid of organic matter and animals which i loved. Thus both JW's and Catholic warn so much about not taking communion if you don;t understand it..that a person fears taking it..because they are confused about what these symbols mean and it's meaning to their after life beliefs.

 

Because of this confussion I think many Progressive XJWS and Progressive X-Catholics perfer to focus on the meaning of Christ's ransom and resurrection..then to actually particpate in the taking of the actual symbols.

 

"Funny thing, but CS even though it was founded by a woman has rampant sexism."

 

You know it is precisely the same thing in Seventh-Day Adventists. The founder

was a woman and yet SDAs forbid women from beings elders. JW's brag that it is mostly women who do all the door-to-door work or making converts and they let them do sketches on the stage but they forbid them for being elders as well.

 

"Men are almost always "first readers" (the closest there is to any clergy), while women are almost always "second readers". I understand that until fairly lately all major positions were typically occuppied by men. I think all this just mirrors society in general. (Of course it is institutionalized in many Fundamentalists and Catholic churches where women do not hold places due to supposed Biblical injunctions. Or say the fact that Jesus happened to be male.)"

 

And the same in catholic..women can serve as nuns but only men can be priests or bishops. <_<

 

 

>ssue #8 The Issue of Homosexuality. The Problems of Conservative Faith

Groups Trying To Marry The Opposite Sex. The AIDS Crises.

 

"J. Wallis made the case that homosexual marriage is kind of a scapegoat for all that is wrong with the family. 50% divorce rate, blame it on gays; single parent households, high teen pregnancy rate-- it's all gays!"

 

That IS SO true!

 

"I also think that despite what they say some of them do show rampant homophobia. I mean those that are obsessed with it and mention it over and over like some type of mantra."

 

I think it's because the straight white old men that run these religions don;t wan't people examining their own sex lives or how they treat their wives.

 

"Of course AIDS isn't much of a homosexual crisis any more. The largest spread of AIDS is in Sub-Saharan Africa. But to the extent it IS a crisis, I think some Right wingers see it as punishment. I don't know what it is in Africa then."

 

And all of this can be examined. I have two gay guy friends maybe they could offer their insights on this.

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Beach-

 

I haven't read the book, but I would caution you in making sweeping generalizations of conservative churches. Since I am member of one of those terrible churches, I'll make a few comments:

 

1. Our service is about as contemporary as they get--we've got a full band, show videos, etc. We're open to changing any methods, communication, etc., without changing the message

 

2. People are happy, joyful, some dressed casually (shorts), some wearing suits and dresses...pretty free, indeed.

 

3.

Conservative Judeo-Christian Faith Groups Always Preach About

Freedom Through Christ...Yet They Teach Inslavement Of Morbid Fear

Of God. When Hellfire, Getting "Left Behind," or Armageddon Are Used

Fear Tactics Tools For Minipulation & Spiritual Abuse

 

We certainly don't teach "enslavement" of fear, but we do teach about, fear, because it is in the BIBLE. Just a quick search of the NT gave me these verses:

 

Luke 1:50 "And His mercy is on those whofear Him from generation to generation".

 

Matt 10:26 "Therefore do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in Hell."

 

There are many others, but the point is that we teach fear because Jesus, Paul, and others teach it--not out of some desire to manipulate people or abuse them. The key is that it is not a "fear" that causes us to be scared of God and run away from Him, but rather a deep respect of His holiness, power, might, etc. It causes me not to be casual about my sin or about who He is. And I run to Him with all my cares, concerns, frustrations, shortcomings, etc. That is the confidence I have in Christ Jesus.

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There is a 'difference' between a healthy fear of doing wrong verses when a person or group misuses the theme of fear to minipulate people or as Jesus once phrased it to, Lord it over the people."

 

What I wish to address and question as a part of my research is....

 

All this passionate 'ZEAL' on behalf of fundamental faith groups to street witnesses and invite people to crusades or revivals and bringing in larg numbers of converts....is it simply based on agape? that is, unconditonal love of God and neighbor?...Or is much of this ZEAl motivated by an UNhealthy FEAR of Armageddon coming? Or The threat of hellfire or getting "Left Behind"?

 

If devote memebrs of fundamental faith groups are constantly going around pestering family, friends and co-workers to come to 'their' church and "get saved"..even though these people HAVE told them they ARE Christian already...then we must ask what is feeding this agressive behavior? Is it merely agape? Is it simplt because they love Christ? Or is it because their pastor/elder(s) keep giving sermons/talks warning their congergational members that Armageddon of hell is trying to get their family members, friends and co-wrokers who are in those 'other' religions????

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There are many others, but the point is that we teach fear because Jesus, Paul, and others teach it--not out of some desire to manipulate people or abuse them.  The key is that it is not a "fear" that causes us to be scared of God and run away from Him, but rather a deep respect of His holiness, power, might, etc.  It causes me not to be casual about my sin or about who He is.  And I run to Him with all my cares, concerns, frustrations, shortcomings, etc.  That is the confidence I have in Christ Jesus.

Thanks for sharing this! I agree 100% -- the religious left is always in danger of forgetting how truly transcendent God is. There is a lot of intellectual gymnastics about transcendence and immanence (which are important to conceptualize about and understand, don't get me wrong), but in practice we progressives like immanence a lot more than transcendence as a general rule. God is so REAL, that to even get a glimpse of God's face would expose the terrible reality of our hearts and minds.

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Or The threat of hellfire or getting "Left Behind

 

That was Jesus saying "fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in Hell."

 

So I don't see anything unhealthy, mean, manipulative, abusive, etc. about sharing with others what my Lord said Himself. Certainly that message can be delivered with compassion, concern, etc. But for me, to not say it would be anything but love. Jesus is sounding a very serious warning in that verse.

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Or The threat of hellfire or getting "Left Behind

 

That was Jesus saying "fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in Hell."

 

So I don't see anything unhealthy, mean, manipulative, abusive, etc. about sharing with others what my Lord said Himself. Certainly that message can be delivered with compassion, concern, etc. But for me, to not say it would be anything but love. Jesus is sounding a very serious warning in that verse.

 

There is a big difference between what we read that Jesus said in the Bible and our interpretation of what Jesus said. When some of Jesus sayings are interpreted in such a way that someone is led to believe that hell has a literal location in some kind of afterlife, and that there is going to be some kind of "rapture" as claimed by the Fundamentalists, I think there is all kinds of unhealthy, mean, manipulative, etc, results which can follow.

 

Of course, there is also the backward step into the premodern world.

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Whatever it (hell) is, it is clearly not good, can we agree?  And Jesus is clearly warning us against it.  And reminding us to fear God to avoid it.  So to pass that warning on would not be mean or manipulative.

No; I just think that most on this board would take issue with the way it's generally handled in a literalist approach to Scripture -- i.e., join my religion or cook in an oven forever and ever while God exacts his just punishment. I know that's a horrible simplification, but I spent half my life in a Fundamentalist church, so it's not an outsider's perspective. I believed this quite literally. Many people I know still do. You may be one of them, and though I respect that, I disagree with it.

 

But we progressive types also need to take seriously the Christian doctrine of Hell. The choice to accept or refuse God's great gift (and its enormous -- and sometimes painful -- responsibility to allow God to transform us into the image of Christ) is one of infinite significance.

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But we progressive types also need to take seriously the Christian doctrine of Hell.  The choice to accept or refuse God's great gift (and its enormous -- and sometimes painful -- responsibility to allow God to transform us into the image of Christ) is one of infinite significance.

 

OK. I think I can agree... but I do so by thinking of hell as judgement in the form of regret for those lost opportunities to (in Process terms) "actualize God's Initial Aim". "What could have been" is lost for eternity. Which is what I think I hear you saying?

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Fred-

 

I think you are right. When I use scripture on this board, I try to use mostly Jesus' own words, because I know many here don't put much weight in the words of Paul and others. And Jesus talked about hell quite a lot. Anyone claiming Christianity (wherever on the spectrum) or even curious about it has to deal with the doctrine of hell.

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Jesus talked about hell quite a lot.

Well, I don't think I'd say "quite a lot." Tally up references to the Kingdom of God/Kingdom of Heaven in the Gospels sometime vs. anything about Hell -- and by the way, don't be too quick to retroject a fully articulated doctrine of Hell back into every colorful statement Jesus made about being banished from God's favor. Anyway, on any tally, Hell comes up really short. (And to be clear, I'm talking about all references here, not ones this or that group believes Jesus actually said -- though when Matthew or Luke clearly quotes Mark, that's one reference, not two or three.) The ones that do show up are memorable, and worth paying attention to, as I've said; but I don't think he obsessed over it.

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OK.  I think I can agree... but I do so by thinking of hell as judgement in the form of regret for those lost opportunities to (in Process terms) "actualize God's Initial Aim".  "What could have been" is lost for eternity.  Which is what I think I hear you saying?

I'm not sure a sigh of regret is strong enough to capture it. I'm inclined to think Eternal separation from God (and by now I've probably made it somewhat clear what I mean by Eternal, or at least don't mean) is really a terrible destiny. We've all seen what Hell can look like even in this life.

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In the Hebrew scriptures, the KJV translates the Hebrew word Sheol as hell and grave and pit.

 

(It uses the word "hell" whenever the context seems to be implying damnation. It uses the word "grave" whenever the context does NOT seem to be implying damnation. Job prayed to go to Sheol during his suffering. Why? I would think finite suffering would be preferable to eternal suffering (if that's what sheol is.))

 

In the Christian Scriptures, the KJV translates Hades (greek for Sheol) as hell. It translates Gehenna as hell. It translates Tartaros as hell. LOL! :rolleyes:

 

If we retranslate Sheol as Sheol and Hades as Hades (which are NOT a place of damnation) and Tartarus as Tartarus (which is only referred to once, in referrence to fallen angels), that still leaves Gehenna, which can be found 12 times in the NT.

 

I know what I think Gehenna was supposed to mean, but that belief is a left over of JW theology. Whether it's an actual place of torment or a state of nothingness or an eternal seperation, as Darby said, it's BAD. :P

Edited by AletheiaRivers
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Well let me share with you '3' different fundamental faith group's interpretation of hell.

 

#1. Southern Baptists= hell is a literal place of eternal hellfire torment for those who reject Christ is this age and the next.

 

#2. The Present view of The Roman Catholic Church= Hell is not a an eternal firepit of punishment..but rather it is an eternal state of consciousness and seperation from God.

 

#3. Jehovah's Witnesses= Hell is the unconscious state of those in the grave. On one hand JW's say there IS a second chance at accepting Jesus as Savior during the resurrection...but then they say if you reject the offer to be JW in this persent life then you will die at Armageddon or never be resurrected back to life again.

 

Upon observation i would say that ovbiously #1 is the worst of these, that #2 is less hideous but there's still the eternal torment consciousness thing..and some may think that other than the idea that one has to be JW to be saved...that #3..to simply cease to exist forever is the most humane interpretation of Scripture out of all these...commonly called Conditionalism..and indeed many Progressive Christians and Moderate embrace conditionalism....Never the less ALL of these CAN and ARE used as minipulation tool of fear. All three of the above fundamental faith groups mentioned DO use these '3' different interpretations of hell or sheol to controll their members and to discourage them or scare them for questing their fundamental ineterpretations of Sciptures...and when this is done is is is emotionally unhealthy and can be considered spiritual abuse by religions.

 

Follow Progressives here, what do you think of this all?

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I tend to call it "or else theology"... all I can say is, a contract made under duress is an invalid contract. Hence the scripture about those who cry "lord, lord" and I (Jesus) will say, "I have never known you". (paraphrase :) - to lazy to go look it up right now).

 

I think of hell as separation from God... I really like CS Lewis' portrayal in The Great Divorce. That made a lot of sense to me. Choosing to be the grumble rather than a human who grumbles... its now, then, anytime, anywhen :huh:

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I'm in full agreement that control, manipulation, and abuse are wrong. My point (similar to Alethia's several day's ago) is that warning someone of something you think is dangerous or harmful (hell in this case) is no more manipulative than warning someone of dangerous road conditions, a live electrical wire, drowing, etc. In both cases, it is your concern for that individual, not some selfish desire to manipulate/abuse, that should motivate you.

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Agreed Darby! The problem is the church... and most religion or any human endeavor... falls badly when presented with power. The old adage - power corrupts... I think that is why many people are suspicious of religion - and why they should be... no one's interpretation (and that's all we've got to offer folks) is perfect. The Westminster Confession of Faith even addresses this. Encouraging a relationship with God - whether or not you agree with the individual's "answers" on social or theological questions - seems, to me, to be the most mature and Godly response.

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My father served as an a JW elder for some years and he gave a talk once in which he told the crowds that you can threaten your son or daughter with a whipping if they don;t take out the trash..and out of fear they will take out the trash..but threatening your kids with punishment can not force them to love you.

 

He explained God is not pleased with religions or religious use fear tacticts to inspire people to accept God. If you constantly warn people of hellfire or end times you may indeed get them to obey God but this does not mean you can use these fear tactics to inspire them to LOVE God. God wants Unconditional love not merely obediance based on fear of trying to escape wrath. Too bad many JW's take not follow the wisdom of this advice.

 

i have heard the old example of warning people of a storm out of love, concern for neighbor before both by Calvary Chapel's pastor Greg Laurie as well as JW's who give this example to explain why they go door-to-door. But if if were not for their FEAR of family and friends going to hell or getting "Left Behind" would they still be as equally zealous to invite their friends, family, neighbors to revivals and Harvest Crusades? If if were not for the FEAR of Armageddon getting their non-JW family, friends and neighbors would JW's be as equally zealous to go door-to-door?

 

If all this so called LOVE, and zeal was NOT based on FEAR..or end times of hell getting non-members would either of these fundamental faith groups be SO motivated to witness to others and invite them to crusades, assemblies, rivals, meetings????

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I think Darby appears to be more of an evangelical vs a fundamentalist. What he is describing sounds internally logical to me (though I don't agree with it). I know there are some Christians who believe in hell as a literal place (as described in the Bible) but don't use it as a method of behavior control. There are others that really do use fear of it as behavior control. All the tent type revivals would have gone out of business if it weren't for the idea of hell, as hell is also good entertainment (well not if it were an actual place but talking about it can be made quite entertaining the way horror movies entertain. And all the more entertaining as it is supposedly describing an actual place.

 

--des

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Beach, I understand that fear can be greatly abused. I'm just not willing to discard all the verses (both old and new test) that talk about fear of God, hell, hellfire, etc. I am open to discussing verses, meanings, etc., but I do not take the liberty of passing over verses I don't agree with in my flesh. I know I hold the Bible more literally than you, so that is where our disagreement is. And I realize you have been hurt by those who, IMO, have completely misused/abused "fear" and it's correct connotations. As I've said before, I'm sorry for that.

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One of the main themes of disagreement betweenProgressive Christians, such as myself verses Evangelical Protestants is the nature of hell. I embrace the view of hell called "conditionalism" or "ahilationailsm," as they sometimes call it. We have discussed this many times on this forum as well as the debate and challenge forum owned by this board..so if anyone cares to review our discussions on this topic of hell and why us Progressives embrace the conditionalist interpretation of hell verses the fundamentalist view of hell...they a free to to search the date base here by searching the key words "hell" or "conditionalism." Or if anyone here requests it, I can find the conditionalist articles on my file and copy and past them on here.

 

But millennialism also is a part of this theme and whether one belives in a physical destruction of this earth by God or merely a cleaning of this society. The 3rd issue that plays into this topic is elticism, that is did Jesus die for 'ALL' or does he rasom only count for those who agree with a certain interpretation of the Bible? The 4th issue that ties in to all this is....FEAR of God..and is this FEAR a healthy respect of displeasing God? Or is it a unhealthy fear created by imperfect religious humans to try and minipulate people and try and scare people from questioning 'their' interpreations of the Bible?

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