• Deconstruction, Deconversion, Joshua Harris, and the Awful Christian Reaction

Deconstruction, Deconversion, Joshua Harris, and the Awful Christian Reaction

Josh Harris is a guy who wrote a book about sexual purity and dating in the 1990s (“I Kissed Dating Goodbye”) when he was in his late teens or early 20s – it’s a book that upset a lot of Christians who claim now that as teens, that book stunted their relationships and harmed them in other ways.

In the past couple of weeks, Harris announced on his social media he’s divorcing his wife and is “deconstructing” from the Christian faith.

In one of his social media posts, Harris said something or other about apologizing to women and to LGBT persons he may have wounded with some of his former teachings and beliefs.

At no time (that I recall) did Harris say he is now a flaming liberal who is a big time pro-LGBT- lifestyle- affirming SJW.

But some Christians are assuming he is now such.

Some are assuming either he is now a liberal, or else that he was seduced to (possibly) rejecting the faith because he was seduced by liberals or liberalism.

It’s not immediately clear to me if Harris rejects Christ now or is merely reevaluating the faith.

Before I continue discussing Harris and the Christian reaction to Harris’ comments, I will point you to a few off-site articles or editorials, so that you may gain any additional background information you may be wondering about (I’m not interested in covering all the nitty gritty in my own post here):

Author Joshua Harris Kisses His Faith Goodbye: ‘I Am Not a Christian’ – via CBN News (Christian site)

Joshua Harris falling away from faith: ‘I am not a Christian’ – via The Christian Post

‘Purity’ advocate dumps Christianity, apologises to gays
– Via Patheos, non-religious blog

Regardless of where Harris is faith-wise, I am disturbed, angry, and horrified to see how 98% of professing Christians are reacting to Harris and dealing with the subject of leaving the faith.

I have not seen many Christians demonstrate kindness or understanding.

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• Soteriology – Are Some Types of People “UnSavable?”

Soteriology – Are Some Types of People “UnSavable?”

I was just asking this on another blog. I will copy and paste most of my comment from there to here.

I’ve been wondering about this for months now.

There are some Christians, who, unfortunately, make holding “correct doctrine” a necessary component of receiving salvation, though I do not recall the Bible anywhere teaching this.

At most, the Bible says belief of Jesus as the Christ and acceptance of Jesus as Savior is the barometer of saving faith, and not whether or not one agrees with or believes in things such as Gender Complementarianism, Transubstantiation, the Pre-Trib Rapture, a literal Hell, an allegorical Hell, Old Age of the Earth, Young Earth Creationism, and so on.

There is the OSAS (once saved always saved) Vs. Conditional Security debate: some Christians believe once a person accepts Christ as Savior, she can never have her salvation taken away or revoked, while other Christians believe it is possible for someone who accepted Christ to have her salvation nullifed or cancelled because of personal sin.

I’ve done a lot of reading about Sociopaths and Psychopaths, and I’ve watched documentaries about them. Continue reading

• Is Complementarianism Merely Personal Conviction? by C. Schatz

Is Complementarianism Merely Personal Conviction? by C. Schatz

Is Complementarianism Merely Personal Conviction?

A selection from that page:

August 2008

This post is a response to Randy Stinson’s article titled Is Complementarianism a Merely Personal Conviction?

In Randy Stinson’s article it appears that there is a lot of fear that comes through even to the point of suggesting that if one is an egalitarian they will be affected negatively for their entire life, even to the extent that they may not remain in the Christian faith.

  I would like to unpack some of the key points of Randy Stinson’s article to look at the underlying message to see how it brings a divisiveness into the body of Christ.  …

1.  The authority of scripture is at stake.

Mr. Stinson greatly overstates his case in this point and draws the reader to the conclusion that egalitarians do not hold to the authority of God’s word.

While he says that the Bible “clearly” teaches that men and women have distinct and complementary roles in the home and the church he does not mention the fact that a growing number of evangelical Christians who strongly hold to the authority of scripture read the hard passages of scripture in their context and see something that is not so “clear” at all that there are differing spiritual roles for men and women.

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• Christianity Did Not Help Me, It Did Not Work For Me

I was a very devout Christian from childhood up to my early, maybe mid, forties.

These days, I don’t know what I am (religiously speaking).

As I look back over my life, I can see that not only did the Christian faith not help me much, but as some of its teachings were taught to me, it created obstacles in my life, and kept me stuck in harmful patterns or ways of thinking.

Supposing there is an afterlife with a Heaven and a Hell, and acceptance of Christ means a ticket into Heaven upon death, that works out just fine. I can sure see how that is beneficial later on.

Christianity, though, did not really help me with very much in the present life.

Any pain, problems, or stress I’ve had so far were not relieved by the Christian faith.

Prayer, Bible reading, believing in Jesus, volunteering at charities, attending church – none of that alleviated my problems.

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• You may be reading the Bible wrong. Pete Enns says the Bible itself shows a better way – RNS

As I grow older, my views on the Bible have shifted. Some of my views are similar to what Enns discusses below. I don’t think the Bible is meant to be a rule book for each and every situation in life, as a lot of conservative evangelicals treat it.

You may be reading the Bible wrong. Pete Enns says the Bible itself shows a better way – RNS

Snippets:

Feb 20, 2019

The Bible isn’t a rule book, an instruction manual, or a road map, says Peter Enns, a Hebrew Bible scholar and the host of the popular podcast The Bible for Normal People.So what is it?Something more complicated but infinitely better, as he explains in his thought-provoking new book How the Bible Actually Works: In Which I Explain How an Ancient, Ambiguous, and Diverse Book Leads Us to Wisdom Rather Than Answers—and Why That’s Great News.

RNS: I loved this book, which seems to be about the importance of honest wrestling with the Bible. You focus here on the Bible as a model of situational wisdom: what it teaches is not always consistent from one situation to another, and our job is to figure out how to navigate that.

Enns: In this book I take a more constructive approach than in my other books, which focused on deconstructing some points of view about the Bible that are very problematic.

I’m trying show what the Bible’s antiquity, ambiguity, and diversity tell uspositively how the life of faith is more like a quest for wisdom than following a road map or book of instructions.

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• Conservatives Still Misunderstanding and Misrepresenting the Concepts / Terms Toxic Masculinity and Traditional Masculinity – The Christian Post Editorial by M. Brown

 Conservatives Still Misunderstanding and Misrepresenting the Concepts / Terms Toxic Masculinity and Traditional Masculinity – The Christian Post Editorial by M. Brown

A very brief reminder of who I am or what I believe:
I used to be a Christian gender complementarian, but I left complementarianism years ago, and I now question (but did not reject altogether) the Christian faith.
I do not identify as a feminist for reasons I explain here.
I remain a conservative but left the Republican Party approximately three years ago.
(In other words, I am not a liberal, I not a feminist, and I am not an atheist.)

In the past few weeks, debates and conversations about the concepts and phrases of “Traditional Masculinity” and “Toxic Masculinity” broke out once again thanks to the APA and a television commercial by razor company Gillette.

A few days ago, I was skimming the headlines at The Christian Post site and stopped to read this, by a Michael Brown:

Is it harder to be a man or woman in America today?

In that editorial, the author, Brown, discusses Traditional Masculinity and Toxic Masculinity (in this post of mine, I will pretty much use both phrases interchangeably).

In that editorial, Brown linked to a Tweet he made, in which he inserted a Twitter poll, asking ‘who has things worse, men or women.’

After I finished reading Brown’s editorial on The Christian Post site, it was evident to me he has a flawed understanding of what the term “Toxic Masculinity” means, so I tweeted at him to say as much, and I was very polite through the entire exchange.

I did not use profanity, lose my temper, engage in name-calling or personal attack (ad hominem) when tweeting to Brown.

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• A Blue Pigment Suggests that Women of That Time Were More Involved Than Thought in Producing Religious Texts

A Blue Pigment Suggests that Women of That Time Were More Involved Than Thought in Producing Religious  Texts

A Woman’s Work Was Sometimes Blue by Steph Yin

Snippets:

A rare blue pigment, discovered on the teeth of a Medieval nun, suggests that women of that time were more involved than thought in producing religious texts.

[Photo caption below photo of teeth]
Blue flecks of lapis lazuli in the fossilized plaque of a 10th-century nun. Researchers believe they suggest the woman likely was an accomplished painter and manuscript illuminator, and used her teeth to shape her paintbrush.

…But several years ago, when studying the dental plaque of a nun from medieval Germany, Dr. Radini [Anita Radini, an archaeologist at the University of York, in England, who studies ancient tartar (dental plaque) on teeth] saw something entirely new: particles of a brilliant blue.

She showed the findings to Christina Warinner, another tartar expert, who was shocked.

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