Accusations of “Evil Questioning”

I’d like to dedicate this cartoon to anyone who has ever innocently raised their hand in a Sunday School class only to be told that the fact they would even think to ask such a question reveals that their heart was full of rebellion. I feel your pain.

80 thoughts on “Accusations of “Evil Questioning””

  1. Gah! Do Lord? I had happily forgotten that song and now it’s running through my brain again. I’m going to attempt to purge it with some Trevor, Matis and Lecrae.

  2. Thanks, everyone. Now I have Do Lord in my head.

    What always got me in trouble was wine v. grape juice. I still remember some youth leader yelling that he hated it when people said that Jesus drank wine because he did NOT! Not such a good idea to remind the guy that the Bible says Jesus turned the water into wine so how do you explain that? Yup no answer, just more yelling. Saying that you’d like to party with Jesus also gets you in trouble.

  3. My mom insisted we sing, “You do, Lord; You do, Lord; You do remember me” which is a little awkward. More than 30 years later, I always feel faintly guilty if I sing it the original way. After all, we don’t have to ask an omniscient God to remember us. Of course, He does.

  4. That feeling of betrayal that comes when a question is turned on you sticks with you for years. In my case, I just stopped asking questions and got answers from elsewhere.

    Ditto. I eventually learned to stop questioning verbally, but I never really stopped questioning. Instead I turned to the Bible, books, the Internet, friends, my diary, etc., and mulled things over in my head. To this day I find it extremely difficult to ask questions or express my opinions in church, school, or anywhere else where I do not feel that I can completely trust my interlocutor. Part of that is my personality but another part of that is the way my honest questions were treated the first 22 years of my life. :/

  5. Pastor? Who is Andy?

    Whadda ya mean?

    You know we sing about him? It’s your favorite song…


    “Andy walks with me, Andy talks with me, Andy tells me I am his own,
    and the joy we share as we tarry there…” You know… Andy. Is that who you get your sermons from?

    (fact is I know many rural IFB fundy m-o-g’s who use Andy Griffith for many of their sermin’ illustrations)

  6. Not really questioning per se, but I once had a youth pastor push me hard against the wall (age 14) for stating my opinion to another youth member that I didn’t think the KJV was the best translation to read.

    Oh, and we were visiting as a group another church trying to raise money to print KJVs in Spanish…

    And just in the last few months, I asked some people if IHOP was a cult…

  7. forgotten conclusion – The youth pastor asked me if I had every studied the issue, and when I replied I hadn’t, he told me not to talk about or say things I don’t know about or have no knowledge about without first studying them out. Then he released my shoulders and walked away.

    So I studied.

    And “won” the IFB high school debate arguing against KJV-Onlyism. Kinda like how a Christian who believes in evolution may “win” against a Young Earth Creationist.

  8. When I was 7 or 8, I asked my Sunday School what a virgin was. I don’t remember her answer, but I do remember that I shouldn’t have asked the question.

  9. @ Rob S. : “When I was 7 or 8, I asked my Sunday School what a virgin was. I don’t remember her answer, but I do remember that I shouldn’t have asked the question.” This is so wrong. We can’t tell kids things and not expect them to have questions about them. If you don’t want a kid asking it, don’t say it.

  10. @Christopher– I remember singing “Do Lord” as a child, but then when I was older, we had a song leader who liked to sing the song–almost every Sunday. It was then I realized I don’t like this song. At all. Why teach a kid a song that makes them worry that God just might forget them? If you’re not sure if God remembers you, how do you know if you’ve “got a home in Gloryland”?

  11. @ beth, that’s exactly why my mom always changed the words to “You DO, Lord!” 🙂

  12. Some questions that got me into trouble (all before I went to college)
    1. If Christ died for all men, but some men reject him, wasn’t that a waste of Christ’s perfect blood?
    2. Why do we sing the verse in the Battle Hymn of the Republic about seeing Christ coming in vengeance? I thought we were against amillennialism.
    3. If we say that God loves the sinner yet hates the sin, why does the Bible say that God hated Esau?
    4. If our salvation is of faith and not of works, then why do works matter so much to you?

  13. The song “Do, Lord” has, I think, had the lyrics corrupted over time. I have a very old songbook with these words that make much more sense:

    “True Lord, O True Lord, You do remember me..”

    Apparently, somewhere along the way, “True” changed to “Do”, and a couple of words were changed around.


  14. @ Markus – I agree with all your points, except “Battle Hymn of the Republic” is not a hymn and doesn’t belong in a hymnal. It is a Civil War battle song.

  15. @ Richard, that is interesting! It makes sense linguistically that people changed the “true” to “do”. It works alliteratively.

  16. My grandmother(born-again) would not hear of her grandchildren going to university: “they’d get ideas”. Considering I studied musicology, I guess she was afraid I’d get the idea that Mahler really composed eleven symphonies(including the unfinished Tenth). Oh dear…..I’m possessed!

  17. @Dan Keller: I agree, but I’d have to add The Star-Spangled Banner, America the Beautiful, and every other patriotic song that ends up in so many fundy hymnals to that list. Patriotic songs certainly have their place, but that place is NOT church.

  18. two memories: I was a public school kid, one of only two. I was not as holy as the deacon’s kids and the other christian schooled….so I’m 10 and I get asked during sunday scholl how many apostles there were. They figured they would throw my a softball (see above about unholiness). I answered 13. I defended my answer by saying I included Jesus. Annoyed teacher said Jesus was not a apostle, he was the leader. I was all “well, ok I mean, he was part of the whole gang, they all hung out together….” This bought me an involuntary trip to The Wilds indoctrination camp that summer, worst week of my life. (BTW I was the only kid who did not throw the stick in the fire, and I was shunned by every kid after that, they were instructed).

    Ok, so this one is better. I asked during Sunday school (same years) if NFL players were unsaved and going to hell since they had to practice on Sunday mornings and play ball all day and miss church. This left my male teahcer flustered. You see, football, for some reason, was like holy in my IFB. Games never got on the way of services, but the scores were immediately available after and inbetween via a portable TV (this was the 80s).
    I followed up by suggesting that we as christians were a stumbling block by supporting this Sunday sport….. good times.

  19. @Maybe gray–I remember those fire services at The Wilds. I always heard that if you had made a decision you were supposed to throw a stick in. I never threw a stick in because I never made any decisions there. But, yes, there was shunning. Lots of shunning afterwards. I had one counselor demand to know what was wrong with me that I didn’t throw a stick in. When I told her I had no reason to throw in a stick because I had made no decision, she was offended. Said I had a spiritual problem. I asked if she had a problem with honesty, and would she rather someone stay in their seat and be honest or go throw in the little stick and lie. It was one of those evil questions with no answer given.

  20. Beth,
    so similar to my experience, wow. A deacon’s daughter returned after the stick throw- in and looked at me and said that I needed to “get right with the Lord.” Then she tattled to the powers that be.

  21. The most frustrating thing about honestly questioning some fundies about their practices is this – when you say their views are legalistic, they’ll answer – “How DARE you call us a legalist when all we are trying to do is to live separated lives for the Lord? In fact, you’re the one who’s worldly because you’re trying to test the waters to see how much ‘liberty’ you can enjoy without sinning!”

  22. @ IFB No More, I’m learning that angry, belittling spirits aren’t of God, even when such people purport to be living for God. My Bible tells me that “the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere.” I’ve seen so much arrogance and cold-heartedness in the guise of Christianity, it makes me sick.

  23. @Dan I agree about the Battle Hymn of the Republic. I tried to tell the pastoral staff about that to begin with and was told the Civil War was a moral battle still being fought today and how dare I question the editors of a Baptist hymnal. To this day, I refuse to sing it at all.

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