Religious Debates - keep it civil


I might have to visit here more often, myself. :slight_smile: I like reasoned discussion about religion, and that can be hard to find!

I think one thing a lot of people tend to forget when looking at the meanings and reasoning of scripture is the context of a) the rest of the Bible and b) the culture the Bible “grew up” in. The Bible wasn’t passed down or written in a vacuum.

There is much that is timeless, don’t get me wrong. There is much that was culturally specific that we can draw application from. But there is also the need to look at these hotly debated subjects and wonder what the danger was at the time of writing that made these passages important. (For instance, tattoos: Does God just hate skin art, or was there some pagan or cultural reason that God wanted people not to mark themselves permanently for someone or something that was not within the bounds of morality? Or was it a dangerous practice, before sanitation became more sophisticated? Before we invoke God’s everlasting condemnation of an action, we might be able to wield forgiveness and acceptance for something that might be harmless, relatively safe, and even used to proclaim God’s greatness in our culture.)

It blows my mind that people completely ignore that aspect of Biblical, even historical, truth to force their beliefs on others (or get others to reject their beliefs, which may be accurate but unpopular). I am not talking about anyone in this thread, but the attitude of Bible-thumping that @RoadRunner mentioned, or cherry-picking to “disprove” either a Christian or non-Christian argument.

For instance, I grew up in a church that didn’t allow women leadership in the services, because of one or two verses in the New Testament, addressing two different cultures, taken out of context to be God’s New Law for time and eternity. I struggled for YEARS (I still do, since old habits die hard, and my parents still attend that church and believe I’m wrong), until I was able to leave and find something more in line with my understanding of scripture. I now go to a church that is allowing me to speak on Romans 16 this Sunday. I’ve preached there several times now, but this is like icing on that cake. :slight_smile:

Being able to crush centuries-held beliefs on 1 Tim 2:12 under the weight of cultural context would be the cherry on top. Someday…

I have written (and need to write more) in a blog on the topic of women leadership and the roles of women in the Church at large. I want to branch out into other topics, but this one keeps being so relevant. :slight_smile: I’ve linked to it in the Literacy group, but I can link to it here, too: Seeking Aleithia


I’m agnostic, married to a Christian, and I sort of started this debate so an atheist should be welcome too :slight_smile:


I teach preschool once or twice a month. My theology usually doesn’t get past “Jesus Loves Me” and “God Cares”, and I prefer it that way.

I took our discipleship class and I’ve been doing men’s group for almost two years now so I’m learning more, and the more I learn the better I feel about it. I don’t use my religion as a weapon and I’m not learning that either. I have too many faults to worry about the mote in your eye.


Anybody interested in doing Daniel and Revelation?


What about them? I’m reading Revelations now. I find it interesting that people are all big on the mark of the beast on the right hand or forehead, but there’s also a mark of God on the forehead as well.


If you understand Daniel, then you will also be able to understand Revelation and the symbols used therein.


Israel Folau has been at it again.He recently posted a video clip of a pastor giving an extremely anti-gay sermon.
His comments around it were “With great love i wanted to share this video”.
Yeah, right. Dressing up hate speech by saying it is “with love” doesn’t make it any less hateful.

The rugby Australia (RA) boss has basically been completely useless and done nothing, despite Folau’s comments directly contravening the RA charter about inclusiveness saying that it’s a complex issue and that there are issues of free speech.
Well, no, it’s not complex. Free speech doesn’t mean freedom from consequences.
If I walk into an airport and shout “I’ve got a bomb” then I will be arrested, free speech be damned.
I am certainly free to make public statements that are in direct contradiction to my employer’s stated values, just as they are free to fire me for bringing the organisation into disrepute - again, free speech be damned.


If you look at Jesus’ life - He never condemned people of their sins, even Mary who was dragged to his feet and was condemned for adultery.

Interestingly, our Lord wrote three timea with his finger.

Once was on the wall in Babylon with Belshazzar. Once was to write down the Ten Commandments.

And the third time was to write down, in sand, the sins of Mary’s accusers.

Since His commandments were written in stone, you cannot erase them.

But our sins are written in sand, and He will erase our sins if we repent and ask for forgiveness, then He will be faithful and forgive us, and blot out our sins.

Jesus never condemns. He want to save.

It is the evil one who lead us into sin and then condemn us.