My Photo
Name:
Location: United States

I am a 1967 graduate of The Citadel (Distinguished Military Student, member of the Economic Honor Society, Dean's List), a 1975 graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (M.Div., magna cum laude, member of the Phi Alpha Chi academic honor society); I attended the Free University of Amsterdam and completed my History of Dogma there and then received a full scholarship from the Dutch government to transfer to the sister school in Kampen, Holland. In 1979 I graduated from the Theological Seminary of the Reformed Churches of Holland (Drs. with honors in Ethics). My New Testament minor was completed with Herman Ridderbos. I am also a 2001 Ph.D. graduate of Westminster Theological Seminary (Systematic Theology) in Philly with a dissertation on the "unio mystica" in the theology of Dr. Herman Bavinck (1854-1921). I am a former tank commander, and instructor in the US Army Armor School at Ft. Knox, KY. I have been happily married to my childhood sweetheart and best friend, Sally, for 43 years. We have 6 children, one of whom is with the Lord, and 14 wonderful grandchildren.

Monday, October 29, 2007

More on the California Wildfires (II)


This morning (10.29) helicopters are still flying overhead in an attempt to get the wildfires fully contained. The one closest to our home is 50% contained, which is the good news. The bad news is that today will once again be hot and breezey with the additional prospect of the Santa Ana winds kicking up again by mid-week or by Friday. Please pray that this does not occur since there are still many hot spots that could flare up and do more damage.
As we begin to clean up and get back to "business as usual" out here the list of suspected arsonists grows. It is now believed that the Malibu fire was started by a downed electrical wire and, quite possibly, the rest were the work of arsonists. The San Diego fires were started, in part, by those who wanted to create a diversion so more illegals could pour across our already porous borders. They succeeded!
Its more than just a little ironic to observe how the fires are now being politicized. Our illustrious gaggle of Democrat elected officials have long since forgotten that they are elected officials. They typically ignore the citizen unless, of course, the citizen agrees with them. If you call their offices, you get some "kid" who takes the call, acts annoyed that you disagree, and promises to pass your comments along. Right. Fortunately, our elected officials have backed off from the "the fires were started by global warming" mantra, but they are still, no doubt, Bush's fault.
There's always a sympathetic ear for the illegal aliens (usually called--even by some PCA pastors--undocumented workers) that it's somehow our fault that they're coming here and we're just wrong for not extending to them every conceivable welfare opportunity. But it's not just us: a number of states on the East Coast wants to issue driver's licenses (you know, the kind you can use to board airplanes loaded with jet fuel) as do our Democrat officials out here on the Left Coast. What price a vote?
The upshot of today's "office memo" is a request for your prayers for the weather and also a prayer for the well being of our state. We are affluent, self-centered, self-absorbed and don't realize how truly poor we are. To make matters worse, the so-called spiritual leaders who "talk" to tens of thousands adherents every Sunday only make matters worse.

Labels:

53 Comments:

Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

7:53 PM  
Blogger Rattlesnake6 said...

You're naive and disgusting.

8:36 PM  
Blogger Rattlesnake6 said...

One more thing O Compassionate One. Illegal aliens were caught in San Diego at the stadium stealing the aid that was destined for the people who had to evacuate. God help the people you lead! You need to wake up and take a look at reality. Simply because men and women are created in God's image does not mean we are to tolerate immorality. I've already written on illegal aliens and the OT sojourner. We KNOW that some illegals set the fires here; the jury is still out on the Republicans who started the fires so they could build new homes. Unbelievable!

8:45 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:34 AM  
Blogger Rattlesnake6 said...

You are pathetic. For all your supposed background you don't know the first thing about the Bible. Typical pomo and/or CRC.
I know, Randy, because I have some connections with law enforcement, but they're all evil Republicans.
Since we all sin, why not tolerate murder, adultery, homosexuality, and kleptomania in the church? Are you really this stupid or is this some vain pomo attempt at being provocative?

10:45 AM  
Blogger Steve said...

Ron,

How can you be upset that Democrat kids were "irritated" by opposing positions, when your response to Randy's disagreement with you is to call him "naive", "disgusting", and "pathetic"?

4:19 PM  
Blogger Kyle said...

Randy,

There's something sinful about deporting people who enter our country unlawfully?

Steve,

You could review Randy's long history on this blog.

5:58 PM  
Blogger Rattlesnake6 said...

Steve,
Kyle is correct. I have booted Randy from this blog and have put up with his silly, ridiculous comments for years.
I take exception to the fact that Republicans set fires out here so that they could build new homes, that our government brought the Twin Towers down intentionally, and that "illegal" no longer means anything to Christian Americans.
Randy's naivete is overwhelming, his conspiracy theories are disgusting to me because I actually put my life on the line for my country and I have a much higher view of my country than that it would intentionally murder 3,000 men, women, and children for the sake of politics.
It is pathetic that anyone who claims to be even fundamentally conversant with Scripture would make such outlandish and outrageous statements--over a long period of time.
Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go out and set my neighborhood on fire so that more of my Christian illegal brothers and sisters can come into our country. Gosh, it would seem that if they were really my brothers and sisters that they'd take keeping the law a little more seriously.

6:38 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:31 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:38 PM  
Blogger Rattlesnake6 said...

It's more than a little odd that someone who clamors for justice refuses to do justice when it comes to illegals.
Following numerous previous entries, Randy, you have completely skirted my question to you about murderers, homosexuals, and kleptomaniacs. This is your "modus operandi."
Instead you give us some goofy story. Step up to plate and answer the question.
BTW, just for the record, the ethics of Jesus were no different from the ethics of Isaiah, Daniel, Amos, Ezekiel, Paul, Peter, John, or any other human author of Scripture.
Those who make a constant plea for the ethics of Jesus (Jim Wallis, John Yoder, Brian McLaren) are barely theists, let alone Christians.

6:58 AM  
Blogger SolaMeanie said...

Let me throw a few questions into this maelstrom? Should one justify bad behavior by pointing to other bad behavior?

What part of "illegal" don't we understand?

What does the Gospel have to do with cracking down on lawbreaking and border security?

How is the Old Testament statement on the "aliens in our midst" being distorted from its original meaning and purpose?

How do we know that illegal aliens are our brothers and sisters in Christ? Have they been born again? Have they come to a saving knowledge of Him? Would people who name the name of Christ as their Lord and Savior violate His Word by breaking the law?

Is universalism a true Christian doctrine?

There. I have asked so many questions without answering them that some might think I'm an Emergent.

11:35 AM  
Blogger Kyle said...

Randy,

"The same law shall apply to the native as to the stranger who sojourns among you" (Ex. 12:49).

This was with referrence particularly to the requirement that a stranger and all males in his household be circumcised to participate in the Passover. Applying the same principle to the situation with illegal aliens: if you want to live and work in America, you must come to live here by the proper legal channels.

7:51 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Ron,

It is sad that someone equates a person being made in the likeness and image of God as therefore being brothers and sisters in Christ. Where in the world is this theology from? Actually, don't worry, as SBC Ed Stetzer predicts, the emergent church is going to become the next generation of the mainline church. And just when we could only hope that the mainline church would have died on its own!

It's also incredible, but when our classis presented an overture to Synod sharing our study about how to deal with illegal aliens who want to take the Lord's Supper in our Latino mission churches, the fact that we even brought the issue up led to a spanking from Synod and a demand that we meet with the Director of Race Relations for the CRC to help understand the pain we caused for even asking the question. Shame on us for even wondering how to even begin to deal with this in a way faithful to Scripture and the confessions!

I don't know Randy from Adam. But I just looked up PoMo. Now I understand.

8:01 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:25 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

9:03 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

9:06 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

9:24 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

9:41 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Randy,

The reason the question of should illegal aliens receive the Lord's Supper from our churches is that when an illegal stays in America beyond his allowance, it is, in my (admittedly minority opinion) a public flaunting of sin.

Consider it an equivalence of one discipline case we had of a woman who divorced her husband so she could live a lifestyle of irresponsibility. It was a public abuse of even our (CRC) liberal view of "infidelity". It was a public, unrepentant sin. Staying past your visa date and not returning to your country of origin is a public flaunting of sin. And those who publicly, unrepentantly flaunt their sin are excluded by Christ and His Church from the Lord's Supper (check the old CRC formularies for the Lord's Supper).

There was one church in the classis, doing a latino ministry, who had known illegals partaking of the Lord's Supper, and the host church went to classis to ask for its guidance. Classis "studied" the issue and basically called for a case-by-case approach.

Having said this, I was once a foreigner in a strange land. I served a wonderful summer internship in Ontario. It was a blessed time, but I had only 6 months to stay in Canada. And the terms of my internship said that I could not hold a regular job. I could only receive a stipend from the church I was serving since it was an internship. I had to live by their rules, and as a law-abiding American, I left Canada when I was done, with a great appreciation for the people in the pews in a very liberal classis.

Why is the question asked? Because the Lord's Supper is a holy thing. It's a holy act of Christ's part in which he brings his body and blood to those who are repentant for their sins and who partake in faith.

If an immigrant has problems back home, if its a persecution problem, let him apply for refugee status with our Homeland Security Administration. But if it's a matter of needing the basics of life, let him go home and return as the law states. God expected me to obey in Canada. He expects the same of illegals in America today. poverty has never been an excuse for violating God's will.

7:43 AM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10:02 AM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Randy,

I'm really having a problem with your concept of a one-time act. When you illegally cross into the United States, its a crime against the people/government of the United States. And the fact that you stay here is a continuing act of sin (admittedly, providing that the law is a just law). The sin is an offense that continues each day you resist the governmental authorities by staying here illegally.

Likewise, if you stay here past your date for leaving, the sin continues each nano-second you're still disobeying the authorities.

I think you see this as a speeding violation which ends when you stop speeding. As I see it today, staying beyond your exit date is a continued sin, and a public one that continually resists the state.

As per the "ger" of the OT, I agree with Ron that I can be compassionate to the illegal in their immediate needs, without accepting their illegal presence here. Yes, I have no problem justifying making sure an illegal has shoes on his feet while calling the INS to take him away. The two actions are not contradictory before the sight of God.

You also need to be a little more sensitive to the situation in Southern California, compared to the situation in Southwestern Michigan. In Cali, the illegals have become well established in gangs and are committing great acts of violence and murder. Here in the bottom of the mitten, our problem is far less, though we now see in Holland that Latino gangs are becoming more and more violent, and the Holland Police are undertaking greater vigilence against them. It's not as bad as it is in California where it is totally out of any kind of control.

Now, admittedly, a local situation doesn't change the truth of Scripture, but it does make the enforcement of the law more needful and urgent. And in reality, any law that is just before God should be equally applied everywhere. It wasn't enforced in Southern California at all and the situation is out of control. The law is somewhat being applied in Michigan, and it's starting to become a problem.

And I must admit, when I read in the paper or see on TV a Hispanic committing a crime in West Michigan, particularly in Holland, I ask, "are they legal?" I know that may be racist in presupposition, but I look at what has happened in Cali, and I worry for the peace of our communities. Granted, this itself may be a sin on my part. Nonetheless, the law needs to be enforced, and, Ron is right. Our government is not doing complete justice in this matter.

2:44 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

5:19 PM  
Blogger Kyle said...

Randy,

This is a simple matter of logic. If you tell someone they must leave your home after 10:00PM, and they continue to stick around into the wee hours, they don't trespass once and are no longer trespassing. They are in a state of trespassing so long as they remain in your house beyond the time you allowed for. Another anology might be a man and a woman who "cohabit" and are in a constant state of fornication.

Illegal aliens are in a state of illegally residing in the U.S. They didn't commit a one-time crime, but are breaking the law continually. Deporting people who have continued to reside here illegally is not oppression. Hiring them so you can keep wages down might be, however.

9:35 PM  
Blogger Blake's Blog said...

This fascination with one form of law breaking by the clergy is fascinating to me. As Christians, we are bound to uphold the laws of our land. I dont think anyone here is in disagreement. The comparisons of "above the poverty line" educated US Citizens going back and forth between Canada & The U.S. to the hispanics coming to the United States is a far stretch.

Another fascinating thing is the graciousness in the dialog - Pathetic, Naive, Disgusting. Randy starts with "My Brother", Ron responds with "You're Naive and Disgusting." I'm no bible scholar, but that doesnt sound like the ethics of Jesus, Paul or Moses! I dont think Randy is suggesting we throw out Jesus and start worshipping Baal. Is Randy suggesting there are 9 persons in the Trinity?

Randy, apparently you were asked to leave this blog. Why do you come back for punishment?? I applaud your efforts, but do you really like to be belittled, made fun of by our dear Presbyterian brothers?

Shalom!
Blake
blakeberk.wordpress.com

7:49 AM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

9:31 AM  
Blogger Kyle said...

Randy,

Yet I also believe this idea doesn't bode well with the Scriptures idea of how we are to treat aliens and strangers in our midst.

Does Scripture prohibit the maintenance of the integrity of our borders?

9:41 AM  
Blogger Rattlesnake6 said...

Randy,
I honestly don't know where to begin. I will start, however, by stating that you need to ask Calvin Sem. for a refund. You got taken.
Next, where in the world did you get 6 million for a number of illegals? You should at least double that number--conservatively.
You did insinuate that Hispanic illegal aliens were our brothers in Christ because they are created in God's image. That might not be what you meant to say but that was the implication.
Your speculation that the American economy would collapse if the illegals left sounds like something from a left-wing web site, which is probably where you got it. How in the world do you think the American economy survived before the glut of illegal aliens? Unbelievable.
Once again, you have posted several rants that meandered all over the place without a shred of scriptural evidence.
By the way, just for the record, you still have not answered my questions regarding what you would do with adulterers, practicing homosexuals, and kleptomaniacs in your congregation. If you are true to your previous form, I do not expect that an answer will be forthcoming. You simply enjoy venting your spleen, hurling your accusations, and ignoring what people ask of you. Typical pomo.

11:56 PM  
Blogger The Future Dr. Martinez said...

WOW! I've got to say, that overall this was a frivolous battle. Rationale is nowhere to be seen in the elongated discussion of the fires. Let's see... Oh yes. I've done some writing on the subject of illegal immigrants for my English class. I got an A. Point here being that the country should help its citizens first before it can extend its hand to others (i.e., undocumented workers). The fact that some were caught is indicative of some affiliation to the fires (a probability factor).

Randy said: "I do know they are good people. I know they work hard. I know they place high value on family and friendship. I know our American economy will be in serious trouble without them."

Although that may be so (that they are friendly), and even altruistic (that we should help), they still violated the law. (And I don't agree with Randy as to the economy's calapse without them. In my paper, I argued that we, in fact, lose more than what we earn from their cheap labor.) I am a son of two parents who migrated from Mexico long ago. They did it correctly, and I believe should be likewise pursued in the same manner by all. After all, it is the law. That is not to say that everything the "law" delineates should be followed. I do believe, as did Henry Thoreau, that there is a place for civil disobedience. However, the justification is not procured by these undocumented workers. Yes, we should help them, but we're not obligated to do so. They need to get in line. The country needs to take care of its own first, viz. its tax-payers. We are the bulk of this country, not them.

And finally, there was a mentioning of the deviants who disobey civil law and the tantamount disobedience to God's moral code. I do believe that there are implicit ideas that go along with these two "norms" (that breaking the civil code is breaking God's moral code); however, I don't believe they are in complete agreement--these two ideas. Here is where I must stick to my theonomic convictions. The penal sanctions of the law must be pressed, and only sola scriptura can give us a sound norm for the church to follow, ad hoc civil issues in any and every form of government. I do believe that we should take care of those who come for help. God shows us how in the OT. However, there are stipulations contemporaneous to the times that each expatriate should follow, and those are delineated in the mandate of this country.

1:57 AM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10:07 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Randy,

Do you honestly believe that you have NO homosexuals, kleptomaniacs, or adulterers in congregation of which you are a part? SERIOUSLY?!

Just this past week, I believe I met a man who may very well be homosexual, but he is living a life of faithful celibacy as far as I can tell. And that is all I will say lest there be anyone who tries to guess who he is through West Michigan Dutch Bingo/Six Degrees of Separation!

Forgive me, for being judgmental, Randy, but if don't have any homosexuals in your congregation, you're probably either ignorant or you're creating an atmosphere in the congregation you're a part of that is unwelcoming and unaffirming! LOL.

Okay, that last part was a cheap shot. In the words of that great Nebraskan Larry the Cable Guy, "Lord, I apologize!" I know you Emergent folk hate to not be known as "welcoming and affirming." We missional guys are more "welcoming" but far less "affirming" than the Emergents are.

As per granting the same rights to aliens as citizens, you might want to check with Judge Andrew Napolitano (Fox News Senior Legal Analyst) http://www.judgenap.com He says that those rights already exist for the alien, because the Constitution does not say, 'citizens' it says 'persons'. So even the illegal alien has the right to due process when he's in between the shores of the United States--hence all the secret CIA prisons in central europe and the detaining of war criminals at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.

As per the economy collapsing in America if all the illegals left, I don't think it would collapse, but I think you WOULD see significant inflation pressure on higher wages. I'm under no illusion, by the way, that businesses don't love to pay minimum wage (or less if they can get away with it e.g. the illegal, asian, indentured servitude at Chinese restaurants in West Michigan). But do remember, if the Michigan Honeycrisp apples are worth harvesting, they'll find someone to do it at a higher wage. It is the glory innate to the free-market system we have.

Best pastoring insights, my brother are "Spirit-led"? I must tell you, I'm afraid you're driving a wedge between Word and Spirit. "All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, correcting...etc." There I go using that ESV again. Bummer!

The point, Randy is that the New Testament is incredibly helpful in terms of pastoral insights. When I read the Epistles, especially the pastoral ones, there is such incredible insight there that I KNOW, thanks to the Holy Spirit's testimony (see Belgic Confession) that I really DO know that they were written by Paul--when others deny it, because they don't like his strong stand against WICO.

1 Timothy 1:5 The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.

2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.

I know you never said that Paul didn't write the pastorals. That must be for those neo-orthodox guys in the Emergent movement to write. But I will say that the great truths I need to do the work of ministry is found in Scripture, because He who authored it, supports it, and orients us towards it when it is He who is leading us. There's no division (that maybe you unintentionally left) between Word and Spirit.

Okay, that's more than enough for me from clearing out the backlog from the Lord's Day...More important things to do like preaching the Word and making sure I have a powerpoint to go with it, (Being Missional and all!) and printing out both a proposed overture to our classis about NOT seating women delegates at classis, AND fixing up this poorly written new "covenant of ordination" in the CRC. Way to busy, even for Ron's blogspot!

But since I'm not adjusted to the extra hour yet, I'm up way too early AGAIN.

3:10 AM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:36 AM  
Blogger Rattlesnake6 said...

Randy,
This is the last time I'll respond to you. My question about homosexuals, etc. in a congregation was directed at this point: is it against the law of God?
Do the citizens of a sovereign nation such as the U.S.--even if we have NAFTA (that was the most absurd thing you've said recently, and you've said a lot of absurd thing)in place--have to obey those laws (Rom. 13)?
According to the OT, nationals and aliens were both held to the same laws. Illegals should be held to the laws of this country. What is your problem?

10:04 AM  
Blogger SolaMeanie said...

Let me go one further on this issue about the "aliens in our midst."

I have often attempted to explain to people that we can't necessarily juxtapose government under Israel's theocracy to our government today. While it is true there are certain principles established by the Lord that are timeless - and the nations will be judged according to Scripture - the 613 laws of Moses do not apply to the church, nor do they apply to the Gentile nations. It would take an in depth discussion of the Covenants to explain this, but I don't have time for that now.

When Scripture makes reference in the Old Testament to "aliens and foreigners," it is referencing general principles for the nation of Israel to follow for non-Jews in terms of treatment and justice. It does NOT establish carte blanche for immigrants today to violate the laws of nation states. To insist that this is the case does violence to Scripture - indeed this discussion has produced some of the worst eisegesis I have ever seen.

6:22 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

Ron

I didn't know that was the question. I was simply responding to the question set before me. Sorry for the confusion.

Are these things agaist the laws of God? I believe so. I know stealing is against the ways of the kingdom. As for homosexuality - I don't know. I believe it is a very complex issue that doesn't have an answer that is helpful. Thus far the Christian community has not done justice to the biblical text regardless of the position taken.

I know that answer will set you off but let's PLEASE leave it behind for a moment.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
As for NAFTA - this is NOT my opinion. Many of the best economists and best business minds in America hold this position regardless if they are 'right' or left.

In reality real wages have decreased for the average American after the implimentation of NAFTA.

You may determine the reasons. This is reality though.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
As for the biblical text and 'illegals'... You can't use that as an excuse to wiggle out of the references to aliens.

You are suggesting that American law and being 'illegal' takes priority over the biblical definition of 'alien.' How do we come to such conclusions? Is not the biblical text both normative and authoritative for our lives?

You ask me about homosexuals as if I am forgetting the place of the text. YET. The biblcial text is MUCH more direct regarding aliens than homosexuals.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Finally. Why was that your last time to respond to me? I'm wondering about the biblical text for not being willing to dialogue?

It seems that a conversation among believers should ultimately be helpful and useful if both sides are willing to learn...

In Christ.

6:34 PM  
Blogger Kyle said...

Randy,

I don't believe the issue of border security is mentioned in Scripture as it wasn't an issue... their idea of soverign nation-states generally allowed for much more passing across one's land/nation.

Yes, that's but one reason there isn't a one-to-one correspondence between the laws governing the kingdom of Israel and the laws governing modern nation-states.

Here's something to consider:

Leviticus 25:23
" 'The land must not be sold permanently, because the land is mine and you are but aliens and my tenants."


Do you even understand what this has to do with? This has to do with ensuring that an Israelite would not lose his inheritance in Israel because of becoming poor. This is very specific to the land of Israel and to the Israelite families who inherited that land.

And, do you think it's appropriate to be able to buy and bequeath slaves as long as they are of foreign stock or the sons of aliens among us? (Lev. 44-46.)

My, but don't we like to pick and choose which of the "social justice" laws we'll apply in our day.

So perhaps we need to hold our own rights to this land a bit more tenderly and recognzie the biblical texts call to treat aliens as people having the same laws and rights as citizens.

America is one of the most open nations in the world, Randy, even after 9/11. We're more open even than Mexico, where the majority of illegal aliens are coming from.

7:39 PM  
Blogger Rattlesnake6 said...

Randy,
"As for homosexuality-I don't know." Precisely therein lies the problem. Typical pomo answer. Did you think that up by yourself or did you plagiarize McLaren?

10:22 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Randy,

I was afraid of what I just read. And frankly, you're no longer missional. You're emergent. I was afraid of that and I'm sorry for that.

If you cannot say that the Bible is clear about homosexuality being a sin, in both Old and New Testaments, while claiming that justice for the aliens in our midst is clear, you are being politically correct and intellectually dishonest, if not apostate.

If you'd like to seriously talk about a life guided by Scripture, then you're welcome to dialogue with me. But if you're going to use an approach to the exegesis of Scripture, I'm not interested and I understand that problems that Ron has with you.

4:19 AM  
Blogger Jeff said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

4:19 AM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Correction--
Randy, if you're going to use a neo-orthodox or apostate approach to the exegesis of Scripture where you pick to apply the things you like while choosing to ignore others because they don't mesh with your theological or emotional sense of "justice", I'm just not interested.

4:25 AM  
Blogger Randy said...

Hey Guys

While I may be guilty of no being fully accurate with the biblical text with the homosexual issue - you are doing the same with the aliens in our midst.

The Scriptures speak clearly of how we are to treat aliens MUCH more than the homosexual. Hiding behind American law and American soveriegnty doesn't do anything to make the biblical text secondary. This is also simply a means of political correctness.

Good exegesis with the Hebrew and Greek text shows that the word "homosexual' is never used. The word wasn't know to be a noun or verb in either language at that time. Your good language studies would show such to be the case.

My point is that we (u and I) at least equally manipulate the biblical text. For the refomers and those following to believe they are not doing the same totally forsakes the idea of total depravity of which I completely believe to be true.

Simply because we study Scriptures we do not automatically nor ever fully escape our own lenses/paradigms/perspectives through which we see and understand the text.

While I believe in the reformed tradition - I have also become aware that reformed theologians generally hold their positions with a bit of arrogance. I don't suggest this to necessarily be your perspective.

Yet. To believe that one person or one tradition holds all of the best theology/understanding of an almighty God?

I simply can no longer stomach the idea that one very small corner of God's people hold all of the answers. It suggests that the Spirit of God is only most active among particular reformed people.

It also limits the power of God... and I'm simply not willing to do that to the one who calls himself "I Am who I Am."

And yes. I am a friend with Brian McLaren. He's a passionate follower of Jesus who believes the church can do much better than it has done here in America in recent years.

7:56 AM  
Blogger SolaMeanie said...

Randy,

I begin to think there is a reading comprehension problem here. No one suggests American law trumps Scripture. The debate is over the applicability. The Mosaic Law applies to the nation of Israel. Even applying standards there to the treatment of aliens by Gentile nations, there is nothing in those Old Testament passages on the alien that negates a country having laws governing its borders, access and citizenship. You are guilty of eisegesis here, not exegesis.

Did you not read my post? Apparently not because you didn't respond to it.

9:11 AM  
Blogger SolaMeanie said...

And as to Mr. McLaren, it astounds me that someone can call himself a follower of Jesus only to impugn His Word in subtle ways.

9:12 AM  
Blogger Randy said...

Solameanie

So what exactly do you mean by 'eisegesis'?

I do believe we can have laws that govern our boarders. I believe most Americans do believe this is a good thing.

The problem comes when we treat them as less than 'welcome' and less than second class people when in actuality we have a nation and economy that depends on them.

Yet we don't want to face this reality that we've allowed/helped create this system.

While 'illegals' are not doing justice to the law by being in this country. Neither is our country doing justice to the law by not recognizing that our economic system depends on them.

For example: If we get rid of all illegals -- then we will stop producing many of our own fruits and vegetables. We simply can not affort to compete with nations (ie. the rest of the Americas) where taxes are generally less/regualtions are generally less/wages are much much less.

We can't produce apples or stawberries or flowers or bananas or celery or onions when we need to pay people $12-$15/hour to work. Our profit margins are already very very small... and often simply sustaining.

So to presume that we don't need cheap labor is a false notion. I wish we could demand higher wages. I wish we could pay higher wages. The reality exists that 'free trade' is not free.

Free trade comes at great price - and one of those things is the necessity for cheap labor for many sectors of our economy.

So to support NAFTA and not realize that it necessarily means we need more cheap labor in Ameica (migrants in many cases) does injustice as well.

One of those injustices is the way we fail to recognize that we've created the problem as much as it is those who are illegally coming to America.

1:35 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

I really wonder why I'm even replying to this, but I figure I'm having the same problems with Randy as Ron does.

As per homosexual, you're right, there is no word "homosexual" in the Hebrew or Greek. Let's examine both:

Hebrew: one who lies with a man as one lies with a woman, abomination.

You're right, Randy. No "homosexual" word here.

Greek: penetrator, receiver of anal sex.

Right again, Randy, no "homosexual" word here. 1 Corinthians doesn't use the word "homosexual". Good for you.

The Bible doesn't use the word "Trinity" either. But it's still true.

Emergent indeed. It's quite sad.

2:56 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

9:12 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Ron,

I'm not in the place of God to declare Randy apostate. But he is using the an apostate approach to interpretting Scripture: "Progressive Revelation=Liberal Interpretation." (Amazing--Ursinus, Oliveanus, and Berkhof would be rolling over in their graves to see that spin on "progressive revelation".

And now he calls me the equivalent of a pharisee, even though he doesn't know the sinner that I am who needs the assurance of grace every hour.

But, because I believe that receivers of grace should strive to live by the seventh commandment, I'm a "righteous one."

I'm not in God's place. Nor am I in your place, but since he's put himself in God's place to know my own heart--feel free to boot him again if you're able.

Liberals can be the most intolerant bunch if you just don't agree with them. This is why I strive to be missional and NOT emergent in my own ministry.

6:30 AM  
Blogger Kyle said...

Randy,

I daresay Scripture is MUCH clearer on the status of homosexuals than it is on the appropriate treatment of illegal aliens. But we aren't suggesting either group be stoned, although homosexuals (i.e., men who lie with men as with women) were supposed to be stoned under the same law that provided for aliens to be treated as native-born. So you're going to have to work quite a bit harder to convince us that the levitical application of laws concerning aliens are 1) being materially violated by the enforcement of U.S. immigration law, and 2) are more applicable than the levitical laws concerning men who lie with men as with women.

While you're at it, you might actually prove your assertion that deporting illegal aliens would seriously damage our ecomony. From what I've seen, that's a disputable assertion at best. It also doesn't account for the social costs that have come with illegal immigration in those areas most prone to it.

For a recent, relatively mild but extremely public, example: here and here.

By the way, "eisegesis" is reading your own thoughts into the text, whereas "exegesis" is reading out the meaning of the text.

8:16 PM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:52 PM  
Blogger Rattlesnake6 said...

Randy,
You wouldn't know good Hebrew & Greek exegesis if it hit you between the eyes. Yes, Randy, we are aware that the word "homosexual" isn't used in the Bible. And your point is? Is the concept there? Does it talk about "soft" men? Does it mention "unnatural sins?" You really are pathetic.
Jeff, I'll apologize for Randy. We'll all had to endure this kind of pomo nonsense from him for all too long.
Just pray for the poor souls that are under his care. And people wonder why Christians are concerned about the Emergent Church.

10:22 PM  
Blogger Kyle said...

It just seems ironic that reformed theologians are the most confiden in their theology and yet want to hold to total depravity...

Well, you see, we're really not quite so sure that Scripture actually teaches Total Depravity. We may just be reading out own assumptions into it.

6:06 PM  
Blogger The Future Dr. Martinez said...

Randy sounds like a deconstructionist: every reading of God's word is a rewriting of it. Sounds dangerous. This is tantamount to saying that we are constantly writing the word of God. Not to consistent with sola scriptura, are you? Perhaps your idol, Jorge Louis Borges could keep you company. I hear he loved to read modus operandi deconstruction. You sort of sound like Erasmus when Luther wrote against his triad. The Scriptures are not recondite, as Luther stated. They are clear, and every reading of a text is not a rewriting of it. The terminus of scripture is clear: "The whole counsel of God concerning all things necessary for His own glory, man's salvation, faith and life, is either expressly set down in Scripture, or by good and necessary consequence
may be deduced from Scripture: unto which nothing at any time is to be added, whether by new revelations of the Spirit, or traditions of men..."

Deduced? Nothing added? Wow, we must be wrong in asserting this, aren't we. Deduction denotes a pulling out of knowledge, i.e., extrapolation. This is contrary to your deconstruction tendencies.

4:09 AM  
Blogger Randy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10:37 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home