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ChibiHorsewoman

Televangelist Underfire

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[QUOTE=Bloodseeker]My question is why the hell did the news people need to go and make a big deal out of it? If they hadn't brought it up, I never would have known, and there's a good chance that it never would have reached the middle east and made things even more tense than they already were.

Sometimes the stupidity of our news media amazes me...[/QUOTE]

[color=darkviolet]Word of advice buddy, [i]don't[/i] go on Jeopardy. Venezuela is in South America, I think it was mentioned in the article.[/color]

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I agree with you part of the way, but...

[quote name='Dan L']Personally I think he's acting very Christian. The reason behind that is that a lot of Christians are very, very messed up people. There was once a time when Christians were hated because they were just so damn persistent to preach salvation through this guy who none of the other religions believed was the son of God. And they were loved because they truly did their most to pool together and help each other out, as well as helping the poor. And they were well known for not turning anyone away- in fact one of the main cultural problems with Christianity is that people didn't approve of different classes of people being in the same room.[/quote]

Christians are messed up people? Since when? I've known some messed up Christians, but no more than I see in the rest of society.

[quote]Whereas these days, it's all "we hate gay people- oh no, no, no.. we [i]love[/i] them, but we [i]hate[/i] what they do!" (or in the case of [url="http://www.godhatesfags.com/"]www.godhatesfags.com[/url], not even that small allowance of love is given) "we don't like this", "we won't stand for that", "you're not allowed in church cos you do this!".. And then there's "If you give God some money, he'll give you 10 times back", "If you recite some crazy little prayer we made up it means you're saved and best of all, you get to spend forever with US!!" (If you see all of the above, it's your cue to start running!).[/quote]

That isn't what donations are about. The idea is that churches need money for upkeeping just like every other place in the world. God's love isn't going to magically keep the place clean and prevent dry rot and cockroach infestations... they need to hire janiters for that. As for modern churches turning people away because they don't like the way that they dress or whatever... I've known people that stopped going to church because of that. When you decide that a person that dresses like a goth can't be a Christian, you're placing yourself a few notches above God, and as a church man, you're not supposed to do that, seeing as how the idea of church is that God is the almighty being that will accept anyone that will accept him.

[quote]Of course, the main problem with church is that it's inhabited by people. The other main problem is that we have a label "Christian" that we wear with pride. If you're a Christian you get all the perks- you get to be involved in stuff, if you stick with it for a few years you get to lead stuff, and if you're a 50 year old Christian maybe you get to lead a church!.. but if you lead church from a young age, and you're a 50 year old church leader, now that's anointing!!![/quote]

Is that any different from the rest of society? You pay your dues in the community, make contributions and encourage people to join, why shouldn't you get some recognition from the rest of the community?

[quote]Don't get me wrong. I'm a Christian, and I think God is great. I even think that a lot of Christians are great- I really wouldn't have stuck with this without them. What I don't think is great is stupid theologies and the mentality that Christianity is some kind of league table where everybody's trying to make it into the Most Holy spot at the top of the league, leaving all the others trailing in their wake. Christianity is about being the body of Christ. Everyone helps each other out- if someone's a church leader, that doesn't make him the Holy One of the church, it makes him the one responsible for that church. In other words, it's probably more important that a church is well-led into good teaching (unlike "let's kill that guy!") than that they have a leader who seems to be doing pretty good by himself. Even if the guy has a 25,000 strong church, it does [i]not[/i] make him a good leader. It might just mean he has a lot of people in this God club where everyone's in on this little salvation secret thing.[/quote]

That's the whole recognition thing... its not wrong to put somebody in charge if they've been making contributions and pushing the faith. But what is wrong is when they start to view themselves as some giant entity that practically next to God. I've known people that left the church because the guy that ran the place seemed to think that he was holy himself.

[quote]Fact is, you can't tell whether someone's a good leader by whether or not they have a big church or they're on TV or whatnot- it's only when they make stupid statements like that that you can tell whether or not they are a good leader. Of course, the majority of people know that, but there seems to be a little Christian myth, that goes "hmm.. he's got a good ministry.. he must be right!!" and a lot of Christians can get ensnared by it. The bible says to weigh up everything that is said to you against everything in the scriptures.. not against the size of someone's ministry...[/QUOTE]

Contributions to the faith again... even pastors and evangelists deserve recognition if they make strides towards spreading the faith around society. And did they put that good ministry in place? If so, that makes them a good leader. Good leaders know who to put in charge of what. That's one of the biggest roles of a leader. On the other hand, I always think that its stupid when people assume that someone's right just because they're in a position of power... one of the biggest problems in the US today is that a lot of people just let the government think for them most of the time. It took them until things started going really bad for them to see what was wrong with the war in Iraq... they just assumed that the government had planned everything out perfectly.

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Oh geez, not [I]another[/I] thread morphed into a religious debate! First the hangings of gay teens in Iran, then the silly dinosaur thread, and now [I]this[/I]? All in the last month! Give the subject at least a break, guys!

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OK, those are all good points- this is more of a clarification than an argument.

[quote name='Bloodseeker']Christians are messed up people? Since when? I've known some messed up Christians, but no more than I see in the rest of society.[/quote]Well, look at it from this point of view- let's say that the Christian faith is right about a lot of things, primarily the idea of there being a God and an enemy of that God, called Satan. He'll do whatever he can to turn the vast majority of the population against God, so that God's plans for them won't happen.

In theory, what better way is there to do such a thing than to try and get the people who are meant to be on God's side, to behave in a way completely contradictory to what they're meant to believe, in either a small or large, but either way noticable, way.

Now, that's all well and good in theory, but it also happens a lot in practice.. now don't get me wrong, as I also made clear, I know a lot of good Christians, but at the same time there are a lot of bad examples out there to follow- a hell of a lot.. and although I agree that society is messed up too, but a lot of the time it can be observed that Christians are actually some of the most judgemental people out there, and yet also those very same judgemental Christians are the ones most prone to scandal. A Christian pastor falls into some kind of sin- and often the first to condemn him are the Chrsitians. "He should have known better" we say. Grace and understanding have no part in the equation. Nor does the consideration that any one of us is capable of making any great fall, and the most inaccurate thing we can say is "that [i]could never[/i] happen to me".

Point accepted, there are just as messed up people in society. But given our message you have to admit that there is a hell of a lot of hypocrisy, which whether it was put in place by the Devil or not, it turns people away from the faith. There's people who persecute Christians because of their faith, and then there's people who want nothing to do with their beliefs (that is, of the individual, not necessarily the faith as a whole) for good reason.



[quote]That isn't what donations are about. The idea is that churches need money for upkeeping just like every other place in the world. God's love isn't going to magically keep the place clean and prevent dry rot and cockroach infestations... they need to hire janiters for that. As for modern churches turning people away because they don't like the way that they dress or whatever... I've known people that stopped going to church because of that. When you decide that a person that dresses like a goth can't be a Christian, you're placing yourself a few notches above God, and as a church man, you're not supposed to do that, seeing as how the idea of church is that God is the almighty being that will accept anyone that will accept him.[/quote]Hey, don't worry, I know that's not what donations are about. But there is a little crazy phenomenon known as "prosperity gospel", which primarily puts forward the idea that that's exactly what donations are about- getting even more back.

And actually the other problem applies to far more than just how we dress.. Is there anyone at all that you would decide "shouldn't be coming to church".. let's see.. gay people, prostitutes, that person that annoys the hell out of you just for fun? Jesus said that prostitutes (note: not repented prostitutes, but prostitutes) were entering the kingdom of heaven ahead of the Pharisees. That isn't meant to belittle the value of repentance- but to clarify it. Repentance is a turn of direction- even if you're still a long way off from being anything like God, if you're heading that way, you're repenting. But if you're very, very close (as the Pharisees were in theory) but moving away from him, you're not. It's not your proximity to the state God wants you in that decides your part in the kingdom of heaven- it's your direction. Jesus was drawing ordinary sinners nearer day by day- and even though they were a long way off, they were being changed, and who can deny that they were in God's kingdom, seeing as Jesus said it himself?



[quote name='Bloodseeker']Is that any different from the rest of society? You pay your dues in the community, make contributions and encourage people to join, why shouldn't you get some recognition from the rest of the community?[/quote]Again, what did Jesus do? he took twelve ordinary guys. Today, you might have said "he took twelve ordinary schmucks off the street" and gave them stuff to do, and stuff to learn, and put them in charge of a big movement later on. The Pharisees had been leading the people in their faith for years, but Jesus didn't take the brightest and the best to lead his new thing he was doing in the Jewish faith- he took some fisherman, a dodgy tax collector, and other random blokes.

The problem with the church is that we have so many "entry levels". You become a Christian, and then you get involved- but Jesus' model was that people got involved- and then it wasn't until three years later that Christians really started to exist! He got people involved in what he was doing long before they actually knew what he was doing. Whereas in church today more often than not you have to tick a box to say that you believe in a whole load of things before you can even help out with the church bookshop (if there is one :p). To put it a way that I've heard preached, many traditional (and a good few of the less so) churches have an entry pattern that goes behave-believe-belong. That is, first of all you obey the rules, then you become a Christian, and then you get to do stuff. But the way that Jesus did it was belong-believe-behave. First he got people involved, then they believed in him, and then their attitudes started to change naturally.

And finally, the Kindgom of God isn't about "you've believed for 50 years, you can lead a church now". It's about being faithful with what you're given. If you're the church cleaner, then clean that church like it's never been cleaned before- and if you're the leader, then lead to the absolute best of your ability. Anointing doesn't just acculmulate with age- God either gives it or he doesn't. There are church leaders of all ages, and some of the younger ones are better leaders than the older ones.

But it's interesting to note that God doesn't give out rewards in heaven based on what we [i]do[/i] here- but on how we use what we've been given. If the church cleaner performs to his utmost potential, and the pastor of the church holds back by a long way, although in theory the pastor may do a more important job than the cleaner, the cleaner has done everything he can, and on that ground he will be rewarded for it, and the pastor much less so- because God made us all equal despite our differing abilities, so he will reward us equally in relation to how well we use our gifts- not how many gifts we have- because he gave them, right?


[quote name='Bloodseeker']That's the whole recognition thing... its not wrong to put somebody in charge if they've been making contributions and pushing the faith. But what is wrong is when they start to view themselves as some giant entity that practically next to God. I've known people that left the church because the guy that ran the place seemed to think that he was holy himself.[/quote]Yes, but it is wrong to be seeing yourself as on some holy league table as I said. And like it or not, contributions and pushing the faith come from more kinds of people than just leaders of churches and ministries.

The problem as I see it is not that we value contributions, but that we only value ones that we deem to be important. The problem with holy league tables is that it inevitably involves comparing yourself to others, and deciding for yourself whose contributions matter most- but at the end of the day, if everyone's pulling their weight, no-one's contributions matter any more than anyone else's.

Leadership is not something that should be given on the basis of your contributions necessarily but because of your giftings. Obviously your giftings will often decide what your contributions are, but sometimes people just rise up out of the blue.

As for recognition- if we take the biblical message seriously, we will get all the recognition we want in heaven, and then some, both good and bad. Everything good and everything bad will be there on display- the only way around it is to "beat him to the punch" :p as I heard it put so well once. Get as much of the bad stuff out while you can, so there are not as many nasty surprises for those you know. (By the way, I'm not saying you need to bare every nasty secret to everyone you meet- but it's important to confess our sins to one another, as the Bible also says :p).

[quote name='Bloodseeker']Contributions to the faith again... even pastors and evangelists deserve recognition if they make strides towards spreading the faith around society. And did they put that good ministry in place? If so, that makes them a good leader. Good leaders know who to put in charge of what. That's one of the biggest roles of a leader. On the other hand, I always think that its stupid when people assume that someone's right just because they're in a position of power... one of the biggest problems in the US today is that a lot of people just let the government think for them most of the time. It took them until things started going really bad for them to see what was wrong with the war in Iraq... they just assumed that the government had planned everything out perfectly.[/quote]As I said, good leadership isn't shown by the [i]size[/i] of your ministry. It's more by the quality of it. And from the outside, that is a very hard thing to tell, so we tend to go by it's size because we think that's a pretty fair indicator.

Good leadership, as you say, involves knowing who to put in charge of what. But Christian leadership isn't simply about making your ministry get bigger and bigger, but it's about actually improving the state of people's spiritual lives. So good Christian leadership is a completely different thing- it's about knowing how best you can help people to grow in their faith. And one of the best things that has happened to many churches in the UK is the introduction of cell groups. People don't just go to church to hear the preacher preach any more, they're meeting up in the week in these groups, and discussing their faith and generally forming community.

And when a cell group gets to about 15 people... it splits! Good Christian leadership is also about knowing when you need to spread out rather than just grow. The great thing about cell groups is that it's a small enough community to get to know people- whereas if you're in some big church, you're just part of an anonymous crowd. Although church sermons and stuff can be essential to the christian faith, we're finding that it's just as important, if not more so, to have a small group with which we can discuss our faith and genuinely know each other. I go to a church which apparently has around 2,000 people in it. But without cell groups, we wouldn't be any different from any other anonymous crowd, but with a Christian background. It's the fact that there's real community that counts. In fact, we [i]never[/i] tend to meet as a whole 2,000 odd at all. Instead there are various different services that go on- ranging in number from 60 to 600.

Now I'm not saying that we're perfect as a church- however that way does seem to make a lot more sense. There's not as much dazzle and good looks as 2,000 people in a crowd, but there is much more discipleship going on in a deep way.

The big question is, what is the Christian faith about- hearing a message or helping each other keep it in our hearts? Arguably both, which is why I'm very passionate about the strengths of cell groups alongside church services. And the thing is, cell group leaders contribute no less to the people than the big leaders, and our church understands that. The only difference is in the types of responsibilities, not the importance of the person carrying those responsibilities out.

[quote name='Sage]Oh geez, not [i]another[/i] thread morphed into a religious debate! First the hangings of gay teens in Iran, then the silly dinosaur thread, and now [i]this[/i']? All in the last month! Give the subject at least a break, guys![/quote]Hey come on now.. the original post was on about the messed up-ness of some guy's preaching about how some other guy should be shot. The messed up guy was Christian, and I commented on the messed-up ness of Christians, and bloodseeker responded. Other than talking about messed up Christianity in a different way, I really don't think we're off topic. (Pardon the lack of technical terms and names, it's 1:15 am and I really need to sleep)

And uh.. Christianity is a religion, technically :p like it or not

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[color=darkviolet]Personally I think if these televangelist guys want to do some worth while praying and suggesting they should start praying for a cure for AIDS or world hunger or the war on terror?

Or at the very least lower gas prices. I mean, I [i]know[/i] God (dess) has a sense of humor- but shouldn't (S)He stop laughing now?

But no they have to pray for a meteor to hit Disney Land :rolleyes: and take out a guy fixing poor people's eyesight. Go figure. God you can stop laughing now![/color]

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I mainly agree with you Sol-Blade, but there's one point that I'm going to have to disagree with.

The head pastor and his ministry are not Jesus. They don't have divine miracles at their disposal to instantly convert non-belivers into lifetime followers. As such, there has to be entry levels if you want to get active in the church. Letting just anybody into a leadership position is grounds for getting the wrong messages across. You have to observe them and make sure that they're fit to lead. Now what I disagree with is excluding certain people from church activities, and honestly, I've never heard of that up until now. If it were back in my church days (I quit going because the church sucked... there were never any fun activities, just hearing the same stories that I'd already heard a thousand times before) and my pastor told the "harlot" that she couldn't go with us to have some fun up in the mountains, I'd have to cuss him out let him know that he's not worthy of being a leader in a house of God with that sort of attitude.

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[color=#6699cc]And on that note... [url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/4188578.stm]The Rev Ted Haggard, president of the National Association of Evangelicals, wants [...] to meet Mr Chavez face to face and apologise for Mr Robertson's remarks.[/url].

Anyway, the comment in the article about oil probably helped the assumption that Venezuela was in the Middle East. I mean, when was the last time you heard anything about South American oil?[/color]

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[quote name='Lore][color=#6699cc']Imagine if he and Chavez were classmates! [/color][/quote]

I smell a sit-com!

Ahem. Clearly, from a Christian perspective, asking God to kill people is kind of a no-no. And while he may have the right to do so, I think it's fair to say that the people who follow religious leaders hold them to a higher standard tha that, with the exception of extremists. To my knowledge, Robertson's flock aren't a part of that classification.

Granted, from a legal perspective, Robertson has the right to say what he will as a private citizen, but he also must accept the consequences and criticisms that come from his statements.

Not that I'm a fan of Chavez ("Yes, Mr. Chvez, I'm sure Casto's a great guy once you get to know him"), but I'm not wishing death upon him...

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[COLOR=DarkRed]If Robertson taught us anything, it's that Freedom of Speech is only good in moderation. When every nutjob/idiot can get a TV show and spread hate, ********, lies, and just generally be a dick, you know the bounds have been overstepped.

Oh, and don't badmouth Castro.[/COLOR]

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[QUOTE=DeathBug]I smell a sit-com!

Ahem. Clearly, from a Christian perspective, asking God to kill people is kind of a no-no. [/QUOTE][color=#6699cc]Interestingly enough, there's a psalm where David does just that. Lines like "may his children be fatherless," and stuff like that. [url=http://bible.cc/psalms/109-9.htm]Looked it up, it's Psalm 109[/url].[/color]

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[quote name='Lore][color=#6699cc]Interestingly enough, there's a psalm where David does just that. Lines like "may his children be fatherless," and stuff like that. [url=http://bible.cc/psalms/109-9.htm]Looked it up, it's Psalm 109[/url'].[/color][/quote]

Do you know the context of that? Because David goes rogue towards the end of his life, if I recall correctly.

And I'm afraid it will be a cold day in Hades before I stop badmouthing Castro, Ilium. But that's an entirely different subject.

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Haha, When I went to my brother's church yesterday, they mentioned this. The Pastor was about to have a rant about it too. I never really liked televangelist. To me it seems they spend more money on their cloths, hair and jewellery.

But, why would he say that! A really christian wouldn't say such things. He should of said I pray for the person's soul or something.

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[quote name='DeathBug']Do you know the context of that? Because David goes rogue towards the end of his life, if I recall correctly.[/quote]
[SIZE=1]Yeah, he goes rogue, but that's not the context of the quote.
[B]
[url]http://www.pbc.org/dp/stedman/psalms/0394.html[/url][/B]

Check that, it's not what David's saying, he's quoting what his opponents say about him.[/SIZE]

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Oh those wacky televangelists and their assassination schemes. I remember seeing something a while ago about a televangelist being caught hiring a hitman to kill his wife. I'm not sure if it was the same guy, but I remember that he, too, hated Disneyland.

Anyway, I was using this story to do a history assignment, and I came upon two more articles on cbs.com: [URL=http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/08/28/world/main798843.shtml]Venezuela Wants Pat Robertson[/URL] and [URL=http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/08/24/national/main793257.shtml]Robertson Apoligizes[/URL] .

Here's what I found funny:
[QUOTE]Earlier, Robertson said that his controversial remarks were "misinterpreted" and that he never called for the Venezuela's president to be killed.[/QUOTE]
Now let me repeat a part of Robertson's statements:
[QUOTE]It?s a whole lot easier to have some of the covert operatives do the job and then get it over with.[/QUOTE]
Of course! He obviously meant that the covert operatives should sit down and have a nice chat with Mr. Chavez. 'Cause, you know, that's what covert operatives do.:p

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[SIZE=1]Interesting, most interesting.

My own take on this is that this is that it was a stupid thing to say and not very many people are going to take notice of it, with only a fraction of that tiny percentage actually agreeing with him and a tiny proportion of that percentage willing to take up arms and try to take out President Chavez. In other words, he might as well stick his head up his rear for all the good it'll do him, a true Christian doesn't spout such words of violence against another person.[/SIZE]

[quote name='Molleta][COLOR=SeaGreen]As for this guy, I've seen him, and while he has the right to say whatever he wants, I will use the same right to say I find him nutty. I agree with Sage, that more than he, it is the [i]followers[/i'] that maybe a problem. Hopefully we don't have any rogue covert agent to do his bidding. lol Besides, does he think an assassination won't start a war? Has anyone heard of Archduke Ferdinand?[/COLOR][/quote]

[SIZE=1]Hit the nail on the head, assassinating a country's leader is a very good way to start a war rather than avoid one, though if the Bush administration had intended to assassinate the Venezuelan President, I think it would have happened before now and looked like an accident. Either than or I'm reading too much Ludlum for my own good. [/SIZE]

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Chistianity is a classic "do as I say, not as I do" religion. God hath laid His wrath upon mankind many-a-times. The Bible is filled with cases of God's will causing the deaths of plenty of people. There are also multiple instances of completely normal humans killing in the name of God, or for whatever reason. What religious extemists tend to forget is that somewhere between God laying His wrath and man making war, God told mankind to not kill. Pat Robertson is one of those delightful people who forget key passages and Commandments at a moment's notice simply to get his sinful points across.

The fact that the man urges his crazy followers to pray for the destruction of [b]The Happiest Mutha-Luvin' Place on Earth[/b] and encites potential terrorist activity by saying a world leader should be assassinated is just ridiculous. The Freedom is Speech in this country has limits. I say if you can't yell "fire" in a theatre, you can't call for the blood of a world leader on national television. I'd like to say that it's common sense, but it clearly isn't.

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