Toward understanding Muslims: 9-25-08
Creating a moral world: 9-27/28-08

Entering the 'Luther Decade': 9-26-08

Ah, those Lutherans. They really know how to celebrate.

Luther

How else to explain a whole decade devoted to Martin Luther (depicted here)? Yes, the Luther Decade got under way this week in Germany and will have ripple effects around the world. Or at least the Christian world. Or at least the Protestant part of that world.

It was 500 years ago that Luther, then an obedient German monk, showed up in Wittenberg. He was obedient but ultimately troubled. He couldn't figure out how he ever could be deserving of God's mercy and forgiveness. He tried and tried to be on his best behavior, but inevitably he'd falter.

Then, as the story goes, he was reading the book of Romans and came across a verse in the first chapter -- No. 17, taken in it context -- that showed him that God offers salvation as a gift of grace, not as a reward for good works.

Liberated by this insight, he began to look about the church and find various ways that he thought its practices were in error and out of step with the gospel of grace. Eventually, in 1517, he nailed his 95 theses to the door of the castle church in Wittenberg, challenging the church, and eventually setting off the Protestant Reformation, though that wasn't his goal at first.

Is it possible to make the case that it's time to get beyond Protestantism and to find a way to reunite the splintered church? Indeed. And I say that as a Protestant. There are some efforts at that, but any global church under one umbrella still seems a long way off.

But maybe by the end of the Luther Decade, we'll be several steps closer. Any bets?

* * *

AND TODAY'S TEXT WILL BE. . .

A church near St. Louis encourages its members to use their cell phones to send text messages with questions to their pastor while he's preaching so he can answer them in the sermon, this report says. OMG. ROFL. IOOH.

* * *

P.S.: What do you think of the effort by the Alliance Defense Fund to get preachers this Sunday to violate IRS rules and endorse political candidates from the pulpit? I think it's a terrible idea, though I think civil disobedience is a proper tool to use if needed to make social changes as long as the person committing it is willing to suffer the legal consequences. I hope these preachers are.

To read my latest Kansas City Star work, click here. (My column tomorrow will talk about the necessity of reconciliation.)

Comments

Just Thinking

I wanted to correct something terribly ignorant that someone wrote the other day: they claimed that something cannot be in two different places at the same time. Yes, it can. More blatantly false claims about science from those who are ignorant of science. And this science can alter our perceptions and interactions with the Universe, but only if we're not ignorant.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G5poD3nXdJ8
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ja0UUKbVlhA

Matter can be entangled in such a way that the same object can be in thousands of places at the same time!
Never let fools tell you what to believe. Seek truth for yourself.

People have a spiritual existence and a physical existence. People may be in proximity spirituality and yet far away physically. Or, vice-versa. Of course non-spiritual types are free to ignore things about spirituality, but these things are not as far-fetched as they may first appear. Those who are not ignorant know how strange this PHYSICAL world can be, and how that strangeness can easily lead one to deeper thoughts of even stranger things. :)

Some people are so poorly-informed, close-minded and ignorant that they do not even know that they are poorly informed. They buy what others tell them instead of investigating Truth. Too many people are content to be spoon-fed by fools. Martin Luther was someone who searched for the Truth. He was not content to be spoon-fed by fools, and it was the Truth that set him free, too. When Martin Luther began to search the Bible, he found the glorious truth of God's grace that could not be earned but which was freely given to those who were seeking God. Everyone can investigate the Truth of the Bible; they don't have to automatically believe sound bytes from those who profess to know truth. Truth seekers can decide for themselves.

Just Thinking

I HAVE SPOKEN TO YOU OF EARTHLY THINGS AND YOU DO NOT BELIEVE; HOW THEN WILL YOU BELIEVE IF I SPEAK OF HEAVENLY THINGS?

John 3
Jesus answered, "I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying, 'You must be born again.' The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit."

"How can this be?" Nicodemus asked.

"You are Israel's teacher," said Jesus, "and do you not understand these things? I tell you the truth, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony. I HAVE SPOKEN TO YOU OF EARTHLY THINGS AND YOU DO NOT BELIEVE; HOW THEN WILL YOU BELIEVE IF I SPEAK OF HEAVENLY THINGS? No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven—the Son of Man. Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life. "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son.

adam harrison

There is a lot of talk about churches and the IRS.

But at the same time, the church and state are supposed to be separate.

And yet, if the State can tax the church, they aren't separate; the church is not separate but subservient to the state.

THE POWER TO TAX IS THE POWER TO DESTROY!

The churches should not surrender their free speech for a mess of porridge called an exemption.

Go ADF! The church is subject to God, not the state!

adam harrison

The IRS is going to monitor the churches!

Reminds me of the time a couple of years ago when the Main Stream Coalition in Kansas went around sending spies into the churches.

This is the type of stuff reminiscent of the old style Soviet officially atheistic governments.

(And that is why our side has had spies attend atheist meetings...to monitor them.)

Dolores Lear

Part 1.
I was a Lutheran from Birth to 50 years. I was taught and accepted as a Child, that Lutherans had the Truth of Life, and I loved Jesus.

At 49, this High Tech Science Human Lifestyle Experience, happened to me. This changed how I understood High Tech Science in the Christian Bible, and connected it with the Myth of Atlantis.

I left the Lutheran 'religion'. This Truth of Eternal Human Life is a New Human Equal Lifestyle, not a Religion.

My Protest 'is' against the Human Killing of Each Other. Like Luther, I do not want to start another Religion. It is not possible anyway. Time is running out, for our Eco System to support Life as we Know it, on Earth.

Misbred Religious Humans have Nuclear Bombs on Land and Sea. How does this Prove their Love of God and Jesus. My Hope is built on nothing less, than the High Tech Science Translation of the Genesis Record, of a Perfect Human High Tech Colonization of Life on Planet Earth.

Perfect Human Species Humans, with Eternal Physical Life After Birth is possible on Planets, with Travel in Spaceships. The Gods in fiery chariots, were Humans in our Image, not some type of Supernatural Spirit Humans.

What happened? The Perfect Brother/Sister Clones, not Reproduced by Heterosexual Sex Body Birth, started Reproducing Inbred Humans, by Heterosexual Sex. The end of Perfect Peace Human Soul 'Meets', began.

The Inbred Imperfect Second Generation Humans were Reproduced as Human 'Mates'. The Males began Killing Each Other and All God's Life. Misbred Brother/Sisters have Killed Each Other Ever Since.

Division, Marriage, Races, Religions, Creeds, Commandments, Governments, Many Laws, etc., were set up for Unequal Birth Male and Female Humans.

Without a Higher Knowledge High Tech Science translation of Religion and Myth, Lower Birth Humans called this Knowledge Supernatural.

High Tech Science Human Birth 'is' Supernatural, to Animal Heterosexual Human Body Birth Humans.


Dolores Lear

Part 2.

High Tech Science Gods, with Colonization and Reproduction, were called Supernatural Gods, in Religion and Myth Writings.

High Tech Male and Female Equal Clone Birth, in the Beginning in Genesis, is the Way to 'Eternal' Peace Human Life After Birth. Animal Heterosexual Body Birth Humans, Kill Life.

Abraham came from a Goddess/Heathen religion in the East, and set up a One Father God Religion, that became the Hebrew Religion at Jesus' time.

Then Jesus a Jew, with Contact with our High Tech Ancestors, taught an Equal Male and Female Celibate Lifestyle, with Equal Sharing.

This New Jewish Movement, taught by Jewish Peter and Paul, became a Christian Trinity Religion in Rome. It was different from the Father, Mother, Son Trinity Religion, of that day.

Now I a former Lutheran, am Protesting like Luther, the Christian Religion I was raised in. I accept a High Tech Science Equal Male and Female Lifestyle like Jesus taught, is not a Religion.

This Lifestyle was 'in the beginning' in Genesis. This High Tech Truth has met with Resistance also.

Jesus led a Movement of Equality of the Resources and Male Celibacy, as the Answer at the Time of the Unequal Human Society. Any Monetary Unbalance on a Planet, cannot continue, but Implodes.

This happened during the Noah/Atlantis Society, with a Planetary Flood, and is again a Planetary Monetary Problem, today. Unequal Humans are setting up the End Times Planetary Fire Judgement Day with their Greed.

Our Human Ancestors in our Image, were called a He God, and Unequal Trinity Gods, Goddess and a Son, in Killing Religions, and Unequal Gods and Goddesses in Myth.

Eternal Physical Life 'is' for Peace Loving, Equal Pure-bred High Tech Male and Female Human Clone Helpmeets, on Planets and in Spaceships.


Dolores Lear

Jesus' Eternal Physical Life After Birth!

Humans have to Understand GODs Elements that make Physical Life as we Know it. Life is made from The Atom (Flesh), and the Electro-Magnetic Force (Spirit).

We can see Atom Flesh, but we cannot see the Spirit, that make Flesh Alive.

When a Human dies, the Elements return to GODs Elements. The Spirit leaves at once, but the Body takes longer to return to Dirt/Atoms.

The Second Birth, for Jesus, born by Body Birth, was the Regeneration of his Physical Body to Pure-bred, called by the Holy Spirit, but done by our High Tech Human Ancestors.

Our Ancestors do have Eternal Purebred Physical Life on Planets and in Spaceships. They do not need a Second Birth. They do Start Perfect Human Life on Planets.

Unless, Keeping their Eternal Physical Life, by High Tech Regeneration, can be called a Second, Third, etc., Birth.

Life on Earth did not Evolve from Algae. How did Life as we Know it Begin in the Universe? That may never be part of the Knowledge of High Tech Humans.

But Genesis and Myth can prove Life on Earth was Colonized by High Tech Science Humans.

Eternal Human Life After Birth, is possible.

What does Eternal Life After Death mean, except the Elements that make a Physical Body, return to GODs Elements. Spirit to Spirit, Dust to Dust.


RichB

I think if churches want to talk about politics, they blur the line between church and state. If they do so, the state should tax them.

If the churches want to be free, they can always follow what Jesus said: render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and unto God the things that are God's.

The church should be about preaching the Gospel. I understand this as teaching Christ crucified and resurrected, with all that it entails. If in service of this singular goal they they need to pay taxes or don't need to, that's up to Caesar to decide and shouldn't concern the churches. The churches should do whatever they have to in service of the Gospel.

adam harrison

Of course we should render unto to Caesar that which is Caesar's and to God that which is God's.

And that is an extraordinarily revolutionary statement, because NOTHING belongs to Caesar and it ALL belongs to God.

Joe Barone

Though RichB didn't interpret my comments of a few days this way, I don't believe ministers should endorse candidates from the pulpit. I do believe they should have the right, as individuals, to join political organizations and stand for what they believe.

PreacherDJ

RichB,

"I think if churches want to talk about politics, they blur the line between church and state."

In what way? How does a church talking about politics violate "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"? Does not the IRS policy violate that far more explicitly than a church talking about politics?

I think it is generally unwise for a pastor or a church to officially endorse a candidate, but I think the IRS policy is just plain wrong, and was implemented by a politician being petty because he didn't like churches talking against him.

Dolores Lear

J.T.

Thanks for the High Tech references.

This was happening back in the 60s on, and along with Star Wars, etc., it was fascinating.

This is the type of High Tech Our Ancestors have, and used in their Spaceships to travel in Our Universe, to Colonize our Earth. Jesus is Alive and is with them today.

They will return for the Judgment Day, Alive in Physical Bodies, in our Image.

a theist

JT,

'Entanglement'

You're joking right?

Patricia

It would seem to me that there are very practical reasons for the laws requiring that churches give up their non-profit tax status, in order to function as political clubs.

If there weren't such a law, it would have essentially enabled the Pendergast machine or any other primarily political body, to meet in churches and enjoy the benefits of being a charity. Which completely changes the nature of a charity and the reasons for a non-profit status.

I don't happen to believe that it's healthy for the churches themselves when they become political agents. If people are benign observers of certain churches' practices when those practices are non-political, it's easily turned to antagonism, when politics enters the scene.

The next step is religious war.

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