Tales of the Occult

Witches and Warlocks and Satanists, oh my!

The approaching day of Halloween is the perfect time for fundamentalist pastors to dig out one of their favorite topics: How Practitioners of the Occult are planning to take over America’s youth via television shows and storybooks. That fact that these dabblers in magic have allegedly been working tirelessly since the 60’s with very little to show for it does not bother fundamentalists in the least. The more you don’t see them the more you know they’re there.

It’s easy enough to gather fodder for these types of claims since any reference at all in a book or video game to magic, magical creatures, spells, black pots, goats, wizards, spirits, or even unicorns can be construed to be the subtle hand of the New Age Movement subtly instilling a love of Satan in people’s hearts. And here you thought you were just watching Sesame Street. You fool.

Do you practice Yoga? Read your horoscope? Believe predictions from the Weather Channel? You might as well be sacrificing a virgin and branding Satan’s mark on your forehead. But never fear, if you’re an evangelist who can claim to be a former believer in the occult it’s worth its weight in spell books.

Never mind that the total number of Wiccans, Pagans, and other such folks is less than 0.1% of the population. Never mind that folk tales about the fantastic and supernatural have been around for as long as time. The world’s of imagination and make-believe evidently have no part in the fundy’s worldview unless the writer’s name happens to be Lewis or perhaps Tolkien.

320 thoughts on “Tales of the Occult”

  1. The world’s of imagination and make-believe evidently have no part in the fundy’s worldview unless the writer’s name happens to be Lewis or perhaps Tolkien.

    And sometimes not even then. I have known fundies who flatly reject both as peddlers of the occult. To make matters worse, Tolkien was Catholic, and we all know how fundies feel about that.

    I could wail about this subject all day, but in lieu of that I’ll give you the unlikely marriage of Jack Chick and “Mystery Science Theatre 3000”: http://www.humpin.org/mst3kdd/

    1. From the link:

      Crow: Wait I thought she was a wizard?

      Mike: No she is a cleric named “Wizard”.

      Tract: …you have the personality for it now.

      Tom: What kind of personality is that?

      Mike: One that is easy to manipulate and fool.

      Crow: Oh. Baptists.

      That made my morning.

    2. Yup! I wasn’t allowed to read “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” because there was a witch in it. I read it in college and fell in love with Narnia.

      1. I never discovered Narnia until I had graduated from college and was out on my own. My kids, though, did not have to wait that long. We all love those books.

        1. Out of the closet?

          😀

          (It’s just a joke. Just pretend someone else said it and laugh like you would if it wasn’t me–and I love Narnia BTW and took my kids to the theatre(gasp) to see the first two and will the third as well)

        2. True….glad to see you admit that your comment(s) were indeed petty meaness and childish rudeness.

          There’s hope for you yet

        3. John,
          Childish games like yours do not help in convincing us you are intelligent, funny, or Christlike.

        4. Hard core, missing the point, drunk the kool-aid and came out smiling, sharp edged fundamentalist.

    3. By the way it ends really well as well:

      Crow: Well I don’t know about you, but Chick taught me witches rock. We get to fight zombies, wear cool black clothes, cast real spells and hang out with Ms. Frost!

      Mike: Witches aren’t really like that at all, neither are D&D players.

      Tom: So we should be Christians then and burn stuff!

      Mike No, Christians aren’t really like that either. Just a weird fringe.

      Crow: (knocking off his witch hat) Well now I am confused. What are we supposed to believe in?

      Mike: Well most people believe in worshipping the person that gave them life, be it God or Goddess.

    4. What version of D&D was that? I’ve never heard of a game where you kick people out of the building for dying… usually it’s “roll a new character.”

      Tomb of horrors would have made this the shortest lived D&D gaming group of all time :razz:.

      1. The best bit about playing D&D was dying. I hated it. I tried to play a rogue that was chaotic neutral. I failed every role and was imprisoned before the campaign even begun. I tried to role play it properly, so I stole stuff from my party and sold it. Then I rolled a new character. And then I went home and never played again. Except for that one time I played “Hunter” the Reckoning, and decided to hammer a demon thing with a fire extinguisher. And then I was convinced that roleplaying was weird (plus the demons weren’t exactly appealing) and I never played again. Except when I tried to play Heavy Gear (which is awesome).

    5. Well, that’s the first time I’ve seen a Jack Chick tract since I left the baptist church. That preacher is full of rubbish about salvation. He quotes Acts 2:38 and conveniently leaves out baptism and changes the words so it says “repent of your sins” instead of “repent and be baptized”. He then quotes Acts 19:19 and says that in order to be saved, you must burn all your D&D stuff (the Ephesian church had been part of the body of Christ for about two years before they burnt their magic books). And then he talks about deliverance (I’m not so sure Jack Chick is a baptist…).

        1. Not at all. I don’t think Acts 2:38 should be used in regards to our salvation today, because Gentiles were not even in the audience, and there is no mention of salvation through Blood anywhere in Acts 2 or 3.

        2. Basically what I was saying was that Jack Chick changed a bible verse to make it say what he wanted it to say (when if he actually quoted it properly, it would have sounded like you must be baptized to be saved, and for a guy who makes such a deal about the King James, he blatantly changed it to say something else).

          I don’t believe you have to be baptized to be saved. I don’t even believe you have to “repent of your sins”. I actually found a verse that says “repent of your sins”. It’s in the book of Mormon haha

          The gospel is turn to God and He will save you through Jesus Christ. Repentance is a change of mind from unbelief to belief in the saving work of Jesus Christ and His total forgiveness through His once for all sacrifice for sins.

        3. “change of mind” back then was a radical change in the entire person, not just a change of choices or even a change of assent.

        4. @BASSENCO – while I don’t disagree that the grace of God, once understood, will change a person (Titus 2:12), people can change their mind without changing their actions as shown by Jesus’ example in Luke 17

          Luke 17:3-5Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him. And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him. And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith.

          The brother here sinned against another brother. He came and said “I repent” (literally – I was wrong – he changed his mind after being rebuked). Yet he did it again. Jesus never implies his change of mind was insincere. The emphasis was on the trespassed brother to forgive, as Christ forgave. That love – that goodness – leads men to repentance. The apostles reply was “Increase OUR Faith”. Today, many Christians who are offended say “Lord, Increase THEIR faith”.

          People can be saved, and are saved, without a radical life transformation immediately. Sometimes it happens straightaway, other times it takes time. Either way is a testimony to the grace of God – his miraculous workings and his longsuffering.

          However, noone is saved by “Repenting of their sins”. They are saved by a “repentence from dead works, and faith in the living God”. People need to stop trusting in their own goodness, their own works, and trust God.

    6. Poor Black Leaf, it’s a cool name, but rogue is a hard class to play (or ‘thief’ as Mr. Chick pronounced it).

      It is clear that Jack Chick knows as much about D+D as he dose about any reputable account of history.

      But seriously, this is a terrible testimony. Any unsaved person who is mildly acquainted with D+D would know that this guy is either lying through his teeth to prove a point or just making stuff up off the top of his head. How are they supposed to trust any gospel presentation he makes? Or Christianity in general if this is viewed by any as being representative of it?

  2. Ha Ha Ha! I cannot believe the number of chain emails I get forwarded every year about how Satanism is creeping into every aspect of peoples lives.

    The funny thing is, not only do Wiccans and Pagans not worship Satan, they do not believe he exists.

    1. I picked up a really good book on Paganism this year from the book bin at the local Goodwill store. It tied in to how many Pagan beliefs were tied into Christianity and what the true beliefs of Pagans are/were. Good read.

    2. Hmm…our family does, in fact, celebrate “Satan’s B’day” (Halloween…for those wondering) Party hats, noise makers…one of those oversized cards you put in your yard (“lordy lordy look who turned 40,000,000,000,000”) and the who nine-yards. Actually going to see the new Harry Potter this month. 👿

  3. Sad to say now, but at one time I didn’t mind Driscoll that much, but now he sounds a lot like a Fundamentalist. I think it is Fundy redeux http://www.jesusneedsnewpr.net/yoga-comes-from-demons-says-pastormark/

    Anyway yea, it is funny how the conspiracy theory is basically based on the idea that it is so subtle and so slight that only your pastor found it. And so that is all the more reason you should fear it because if he hadn’t have preached on the subject you’d be demon possessed by now. The fact is that people have always through all of eternity had a fascination with the macabre and fantasy/myth. That is life. there is no demonic conspiracy.

    1. If you look at Driscoll’s actual comments, he wasn’t saying that Yoga the exercise is bad for you. He was pointing out that true yoga also comes along with eastern mysticism and new age philosophy.

      1. That’s not how I interpreted his comment, but maybe that’s because I’m biased, having heard enough other things that he’s said to already be convinced that he’s a fundamentalist in reformed clothing. The gender roles stuff, for one, and his church leadership structure, for another.

      2. @Kevin,

        Truth is that really isn’t how it is interpreted. I get what he might mean, but even still there is no demonic or earth shattering conspiracy with even the religiosity that comes with yoga. But I’d recommend listening to his bit on Avatar. He sounds exactly like a Fundy preacher…actually I know because a lot of Fundy preachers were saying the same thing.

        Also you should look at his philosophy on gender roles particularly what he thinks “manliness” is. It is some of the most sexest and perverted stuff you can find. Other then the fact that he wears jeans, watches tv, and listens to devil music his rhetoric and in many ways doctrine is Fundamentalism part 2.

        1. @Mark. I wasn’t referring to the majority of the dumb stuff he said. Thanks for changing the subject (I think there is a logical fallacy in their somewhere). I was simply referring to his actual statement regarding yoga, which I find definitely defendable.

          The more that I have practiced yoga, the more I find that it is inexorably linked to new age religion. It doesn’t mean that people that do yoga automatically and mysteriosly fall into new age religion without knowing about it. However, it is something for people to be knowledgable about which is all that Driscoll seems to be saying.

        2. I don’t agree either with everything Driscoll’s says. As a Pastor you should stick to the Bible and try to stay away from preaching on/against current events.

          I don’t mind Driscoll giving his opinions when asked about certain things but he should not use his pulpit/platform to preach his preferences.

          ——

          I think Christians should be aware and be careful of everything they see, watch and do. There are false philosophies, truths and problems in pretty much everything you see, read etc. I don’t think it’s wrong to expose yourself to some of these things as long as you go back to the Bible to make sure you are still pointing to the right direction. And the line of exposure will differ from person to person. (For example: Recognizing that sex out of marriage is wrong in a movie and actually watching/exposing yourself to a xxx scene are two different things).

          I see some people use the meat offered to idols argument when it comes to halloween and yoga. We first have to come to the conclusion that halloween and yoga are actually (amoral) pieces of meat. For the sake of argument let’s say they are actually meat. We absolutely can not ignore the EXPEDIENCY clause. Just because you think it’s just meat doesn’t mean you should eat it.

          Just because you think yoga, halloween and whatever else is OK doesn’t mean it is expedient for you to engage in those things. Especially knowing that yoga and halloween is tainted. This is just a food for thought. I think many people ignore the expediency clause.

          BTW I don’t think it’s a sin to engage in yoga and halloween. Personally I don’t think they’re expedient. I will have to rethink about halloween when I have kids but I don’t think it’s the end of the world not to participate in halloween.

        3. Christians don’t need to go searching for boogymen. Yoga is a viable exercise and most people are smart enough to figure out where the exercise ends and the philosophy begins. Clearing the mind and focus among them any other things that yoga teach aren’t necessarily bad and won’t make you fall into the occult. I guess for me I don’t go out of my way to find what might be wrong with something. I live life in the freedom of Christ knowing that he is my savior and nothing, no philosophy or exercise, is going to take that away.

          So seems like a non-start from the beginning. Christians should know where Yoga comes from sure. But that doesn’t mean there is some devil conspiracy to take over our minds and make us all demon worshipers. Part of being smart is knowing when something is harmless.

    2. Seriously, Mark, most things that are really serious threats are pretty obvious and not the least bit secret– nuclear weapons, viruses, armed robbery, tsumanmis, droughts, global warming, stupid television and movies, etc.
      The ones nobody but the illuminati knows about are not likely to ever come around.

  4. This brings back the memory of one of the first times I was in an IFB and I heard the preacher go off on ouija boards and D&D. That may have been the first “layer of the onion” that peeled away for me.

    I heard not too long along from a fundy that they bought a children’s book for their grandson. While reading it they realized it had wizards and spells in it. They proceeded to throw it out.
    I mean really? If you believe in “magic” and spells, how gullible are you? 😯

        1. @AvgJoe I think the point he is trying to make is not that “magic spells” never exist but usually the magic depicted in storybooks is not the same “magic” used by the witch who brought Samuel back.(I think it’s somewhere in Kings or Chronicles)

          Honestly though, the witch was shocked and scared when she brought Samuel back and I don’t think it was really her doing.

        2. And, if you read the text, the witch is afraid of Saul, not the ghost of Samuel. Look at the words out of her mouth, “Thou art Saul!” She doesn’t say boo to the ghost. The most ancient of epics also record communication with the dead. Either it’s all hogwash and the Old Testament is telling us a mythic story (similar to the epics); or else there were people who could talk to the dead (ad God does take pains to forbid the practice), even if there are not any now.

          But what the OT calls witchcraft is necromancy: speaking to the dead (usually or always by shedding blood first). It’s not the Glenda the Good Witch stuff we see today.

        3. Bassenco, ok, I thought she was also spooked by the fact Samuel did come. But yeah, she was also not too happy about Saul being the one who had deceived her into helping him.

  5. Oh does anyone remember the Smurfs show? I wasn’t allowed to watch that because of magic or demons or some such nonsense. Not that I am worse off for not watching that, but people still look at me like I just landed off of a space ship from Mars when I tell them I wasn’t allowed to watch that show as a kid.

    1. I was amazed when I got to BJU and discovered I had classmates who were not allowed to watch the Smurfs or the Care Bears or anything that sounded like magic at all. I didn’t know there was anything wrong with those shows, and my poor roommates were looking at me as though they wanted to throw me out, just in case some of the leftover Smurf magic might rub off on them or something …

    2. My mom once explained to me that I wasn’t allowed to watch the Smurfs as a child because “they held those things … you know, nuances.”

      Do you mean seances, Mom? 🙄

    1. And since the “H” word falls on a Sunday this year, I’m sure on Oct. 31st, IFBs across the country will be on fire with the preaching against bobbing for apples and dressing up like Lady Gaga (not that a fundy preacher would be that hip to know who Lady G was, they would probably use Madonna as a reference).

      Isn’t strange that fundies are against little kids getting dressed up and going door-to-door?

        1. I’m sure they found out through repeatedly watching her videos so they could “warn the flock.” :mrgreen:

      1. Oh, not knowing who Lady Gaga is won’t stop them as long as they’ve heard her name. That’s enough to preach against her. The thing that made my finally read the Harry Potter books (and I enjoyed them!) was a chapel message by Steve Hankins at BJU. He railed against Harry Potter for 20 minutes or so, then admitted that he hadn’t actually read a word of the books.

        1. Pronounced Lady Jaja, no doubt. “My pastor told me just stay away from that Harry Porter, Lady Jaja Binks, all of that stuff!”

    2. This is a subject that has always bothered me. They say that they don’t believe in Halloween (yeah, I said it) yet they have a party with costumes, etc. and call it a Hallelujah party or a harvest festival and it’s o.k. If you don’t believe in Halloween it does not bother me, but don’t celebrate Halloween and call it something else. That’s hypocritical

  6. My parents were surprisingly non-alarmist about stuff like this. I even got to dress up as the devil for Halloween one year. Looking back on those painfully embarrassing pictures now, though, I kind of wish they wouldn’t have let me.

  7. I remember being terrified of Satanism multiple times in high school/college. Then I got a job @ AOL working next to a satanist. Was one of the funniest/most charming people I ever met, and loved cats (his & others). Had a lot of peircings, and liked to wear black, but was a very decent guy once you got past that. Was a total shock that he wasn’t sacrificing animals, etc.

    1. I left fundyland when I went to college (and was able to find my own place) for the Episcopal church, but one of the best “christians” I ever met was a Wiccan–she was everything that Christians were supposed to be. And, I think that, because of her, I’ve become a better Christian as well. And, she wasn’t sacrificing animals at all 🙂

      1. Wiccans have a respect for the earth and animals that Christians would do well to imitate. God has provided us with natural resources, but they are not infinite – it’s sad so few Christians see the importance of caring for the planet.

  8. My ex-wife made my kids throw out their Star Wars videotapes because they were “demonic.” (And these were the original 3, not the ones with “evil” Jar Jar Binks!)

        1. Steve Hamilton? Is that Ron Hamiltons brother? The same Steve Hamilton that went to third base with Pastor Steven Anderson of Arizona?

        1. I think Darrell could’ve posted a stick figure drawing today, or an audio podcast and @Scorpio would’ve been the first to see the white piano! 🙂

  9. Hmm . . . So I suppose I’m worshipping the Devil whenever I play my Sonic the Hedgehog games. Talking animals that walk on two feet, magical emeralds, time/dimension travel . . . and let’s not forget the fact that the entire point of the game is to stop the innocent human scientist who just wants to take over the world . . . Hmm.

    On the other hand, nothing spoils a game of Sonic the Hedgehog like having an environmentalist say “Hey! That’s a green game! You’re destroying technology! Yay!”

  10. These stupid rules drove me crazy as a kid! For one thing, nobody was consistent. Some people allowed things, and some didn’t. It was a glaring example of the “pick and choose” buffet-style Fundamentalism. I also wasn’t allowed to watch the Smurfs growing up, but…then my grandma bought me Smurfs toys and I was allowed to keep them. I even had a Smurfs themed birthday party. Yet…I wasn’t allowed to watch the show because it was “demonic”. They had characters named after the devil, what more evidence did you need?

    Oh, I did watch it though…I watched these “banned” shows while my mom was napping after a long day of teaching, and my dad was at work. I learned early on to buck the system, I guess. Oh, and I watched He-man too, OMG!

  11. I think the thing that bugs me most, is usually things are deemed “demonic” or “witchcraft” without having even seen or read said offender. The Harry Potter books are a glaring example. Calls for banning the books from libraries, yet many calling for that didn’t bother to actually, you know, read them!

    1. That drives me absolutely nuts. If you are going to decide that something is bad, at least evaluate it yourself instead of slurping down someone else’s regurgitated opinions.

      HP is a great series – excellently written, lots of good imagery in there, and can’t imagine that anyone would think the books would truly lead kids to worship Satan unless that person had been reading The Onion.

      1. I read the first four before I ever even heard of the Harry Potter ban. I took one on a youth trip a few months after my family was introduced to Fundyland and the pastor’s daughter freaked out and I had to throw it away. I asked the Pastor about it and he gave me an article stating that the HP books were the direct cause of mass conversions to witchcraft and that the books themselves contained evil spirits. I was one freaked out 14 year old after that conversation. I threw mine away but caved and read the final one when it came out in college. I had it in my bookbag in chaple and I was sure it was going to fly open and hit the Pastor on the forehead. How very little I thought of the power God.

        1. My apologies for the many typos. Adding comments via phone is not a plesant experience. I just can’t stay away. 🙂

  12. //The world’s of imagination and make-believe evidently have no part in the fundy’s worldview unless the writer’s name happens to be Lewis or perhaps Tolkien.//

    Couldn’t have said it better.

    nicodemusatnite.blogspot.com

  13. A local church left a flyer in my door the other day for their “Pre-All Saints Day Party” to be held the evening before All Saints Day…which just happens to be All Hallows Eve…i.e., October 31. They’re getting disturbingly creative!

    1. Of course if you’re Lutheran or Reformed you can always celebrate Reformation Day (October 31) by dressing up as the Reformers. No resemblance to any other holidays by doing that. 🙄

      1. My church is doing that this year. There’s also going to a presentation on John Calvin and how awesome he was. Just what the kids were hoping for! I’m (mostly) Reformed, but they can also cross the line into hero worship. A John Calvin party? Blech.

        1. I regularly pass out bilingual copies of the 95 Theses on this day. I like to think it gives people something interesting to talk about.

      1. Barney is evil

        W-E-L-L… I’ll have to go fundy on that one because he is evil! well, maybe not as evil as Baby Bop.*shudder* …I love you,*shiver* you love me,*spasm* let’s get some rocks and stone Bar-ney… *tick* 😈

      2. Awright, you guys is meddlin’ now. Yer makin’ me rychussly indignated! My daughter sang on the first-ever Barney video. Can’t bring myself to listen to it, but still!

    1. I jus read through some of the comments for that book….This line: “We all have memories of monsters, shadows, dark spirits that visited us in our bedrooms.” Made me say, WOW….just wow. I can’t say that I have ever had a ‘dark spirit’ visit me in my bedroom.

      1. I did. It was a real demon and it scared the crap out of me. I quit seeing it after we moved out of that apartment.

        (My parents didn’t believe me and tried to console me with kiddie stories about monsters in the closet.)

      2. P.S. I’m not saying HP is evil or everything on that website is right. But don’t discount all these stories just because a little kid is the one telling you the story about the creepy thing.

        I’ve met other people that his has happened to and it really hurt that our parents didn’t believe us.

  14. The approaching day of Halloween

    Don’t you mean “the devil’s holiday?” Any *real* fundy knows that Halloween is nothing more than a day to worship Satan! 😈 I was never allowed to watch Sesame Street because of the evil “rock music.” Come to think of it I don’t think the Count helped, either. Of course, my family never even owned a TV during the first 10 years or so of my life, so watching it wasn’t even an option during that time. Granted I’m probably better for it (to this day I prefer reading over watching TV), but all the same I definitely get some weird looks whenever I mention I’ve never seen certain shows.

    One last thing: my fundy mother, the one who has ranted against the evils of Harry Potter (despite never having read the books or seen the movies – not that seeing the movies is any substitution for the real thing!) and has taught my siblings and I that Halloween is “the devil’s holiday,” has no problem whatsoever with practicing yoga or reading/watching the Chronicles of Narnia. Yeah, I don’t get it either. ❓

    1. So many fundies don’t see the contradictions in their own lives. If they say Harry Potter is wrong but yoga and Narnia are OK, doesn’t it really just mean that we all have CHRISTIAN LIBERTY to decide for OURSELVES what things we should permit or not? I personally don’t do yoga, but I’ve let my 11 year old read all the Potter books and we’re discussing them together. She’s eagerly awaiting the last movie too. I totally understand Christians who don’t feel free to do certain things; I just don’t like it when they say anyone who does those things must be evil or sinning. It’s like our former church members who had fits when we sang praise and worship songs or referenced Tim Keller, but had no problem with their kids being on dance teams or dating unsaved kids. Personally, I found the dance teams tended to lewdness and I believe Christians should only date Christians, but that was my personal opinion. I didn’t tell them they weren’t allowed to make those choices, but boy, did they let us know when we happened to transgress against their sacred cows!

      BTW, my parents didn’t let us have a TV until I was about 16.

      1. Yay for Christian Liberty! Thank you, PW, for saying what I think. :o) I am still confused by all the contradictions in these supposed standards. I was allowed to watch Smurfs and He-Man and Mr. Rogers and Care Bears, but we didn’t celebrate Halloween (It goes against God, my mom said) and we didn’t celebrate Valentine’s Day (It’s all about the evil “s” word, my mom said), and we didn’t get Easter baskets at Easter. My classmates always thought I was a Jehovah’s Witness b/c of all the holidays I didn’t celebrate. But I could go to movies and listen to secular music and I – gasp – went to a public school.

        1. “… Valentine’s Day (It’s all about the evil “s” word, my mom said)…”

          Sales?
          Smarminess?
          Saccharine?

        2. Gary,

          D) None of the above. My mother told me, when I was in kindergarten, that asking someone to “Be My Valentine” was the same as propositioning that person for s.ex. I was seriously traumatized by this statement, and therefore had NO problem agreeing with her that it would just be wrong for me to pass out Valentines to my classmates, even if I gave them nice, Christian ones.

        3. Let’s see…. Holidays at my house growing up….

          Easter- my brother and I got Easter baskets and tons of candy though we were always taught the real meaning of Easter and ALWAYS went to those Sunrise (get it “SON rise”) Services at church. We weren’t allowed to have our baskets till after Church. Longest service of the year.

          St. Patrick’s Day – not observed because our house didn’t believe in “luck”. Now however, my brother decks himself out in neon green.

          Valentine’s Day- THEN- I couldn’t even talk to a boy without getting dirty looks from my mother much less have a valentine. NOW- I have a boyfriend. 😛 and my brother gives valentines to all the girls in his class.

          Halloween- THEN- HAHAHA! That was Satan’s day, and boy did we look down on those “Christian’s” that celebrated Halloween. BUT, I was allowed to dress as a Bible character and got to the Harvest Festival at my grandmother’s church. NOW- STILL not observed to my brothers frequent protest. They both love Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas…..figure that one out… And me, I’ve never gone to any Halloween parties so I’ve never gotten do dress up.

          Thanksgiving- We just ate a lot.

          Christmas- we ALWAYS had to read the Christmas story right before we ate and then my uncle prayed for FOREVER. I was STARVING.

          New Years- Meh, nothing exciting at all.

      2. Oh, I completely agree. If you have a problem with Harry Potter, fine, don’t read or watch it. There are millions of other books you can read and movies you can watch. (My own philosophy is that trying to make it through all the books I want to read is like trying to kill a hydra; for every one I finish at least at least two more spring up to take its place.) My problem is with saying that someone is sinning by reading/watching them, especially when you contradict yourself by allowing, say, Narnia, with all its witches, magic, and pagan gods. It’s called Christian liberty.

    1. Keep in mind that the Doppler effect (which Doppler radar uses in a very general sense) was named after Christian Doppler.
      Leave it to satan to use a christian to develop a tool used to forecast the future! 😀

  15. Went along with my cousins for trick-or-treating for my first real Halloween last fall, somewhat to my parent’s consternation. Glad I can finally say that I have engaged in this tradition.

    It wasn’t, like, absolutely thrilling, but it surely wasn’t what it had been portrayed to be by my parents and pastor. If there were any Satanists hanging out, I didn’t see them. It frustrates me to try to explain to anyone more conservative than I that if you have to inform someone of the bad things they might be tempted to do by participating in a harmless cultural tradition, that you are actually putting thoughts into their head and possibly “leading them into temptation.” The fundies I have said this to never did have a great reason for what they did, but simply whipped out the “appearance of evil” verse. 😐

    Side note: now what DID concern me was how perfect the scenario was for a little kiddie to get snapped up by some costumed SO taking the opportunity to check out a nighttime kids’ event. 😯

    1. When you consider how many kids go Trick-or-Treating and how few problems there are with it, it’s really pretty darn safe.

      Every year about this time, we get warnings not to let kids eat treats that weren’t plastic-wrapped. Never mind that no child has ever been poisoned by Halloween candy (except for one or two where the poisoners were members of their own families, and tried to use Halloween as a cover). Never mind that it’s quite easy to re-wrap food after you’ve tampered with it. Everybody wants to believe that mysterious strangers are out to get us, and we won’t be swayed by the facts, but we will have our fears allayed by some magic spell (like only eating wrapped candy).

      1. Nah, I meant I was concerned about kids getting kidnapped. I dunno how likely it is; just saying that I noticed that it would be decently easy because of the fact that adults completely costumed were allowed near kids at night in an environment where you could mistake one kid for another and not miss them for awhile. Not saying that it was so dangerous that I wouldn’t let my future kids participate.

        1. I don’t know how it is other places, but where I live, SOs have to stay home on Halloween and keep their porch lights off. Not sure how this is tracked… but that’s the law.

        2. Kids being snatched by bad people also happens far less than most people think. Almost all kidnappings are done by the kid’s own relatives in custody disputes or other family feuds. The rather few cases where a stranger takes a child get a very disproportionate amount of publicity. Not that that isn’t horrible; but it’s not very common.

    1. Well, I personally don’t do yoga because I believe that by centering my thoughts on the eternalness of the Lord, realizing that there is no circumstance in life that inherently includes reason for worry (‘sides… most of the things we worry about are man-made, non-concrete “situations”) and focusing on my never-changing, loving relationship with God through His Son, I can achieve peace. I am not judging anyone who practices yoga, though.

      1. *Forgot to mention that most of the things we worry about are also cultural, and the more you travel, the more you realize that “reality” changes according to where you are.

    2. Yoga is what it is, regardless of whther people go “all the way” with it or not, and you can stretch without Yoga.

      Besides, if he had beat Emporer Palpetine in the first place there wouldn’t have been a Darth Va– wait. Nevermind.

      1. Ha! I kept thinking of Yoda too! BTW, I did a few stretches today that some might have called yoga. But my mind was active–thinking about my freedom in Christ, and thinking about this thread! 😉

        1. I actually agree with you Bass—it’s like Karate, as long as you junk the spiritual mumbo jumbo it is great physical excercise and discipline ( I speak as a former student who wishes there was dojo within driving distance)
          I also agree with Mohler that Yoga is by definition somehting to be more careful with because it is mostly mental/spiritual witht he physical being secondary, but that’s just my opinion.

        2. @bass/john

          please shut up in regards to personal attacks. i’ve been enjoying a satirical website for a couple months now, and both of you are destroying it for me, as well as a few other people i’d assume. not only is it a shoddy tactic of debate, it’s also quite unbecoming to your witness as christians. i realize that you both think the other an apostate, but i don’t see where that allows you to demean each other. just give it a rest already – speck in the other’s eye, log in your own and all that.

    3. There are those of us who would consider Mohler fundamentalist 2.0. He’s got a lot of the same cultural hang-ups, the same culture war line, uses much the same rhetoric, and dismisses his opponents in much the same way as the IFB type of fundamentalists (fundamentalists 1.0). Just saying.

  16. I am excited that this year I actually get to celebrate Halloween. I will be – gasp – dressing in costume and passing out candy at work, and a friend has invited me to her party.

    My therapist suggested that I dress as a Fundy for the party. I don’t think I’m quite ready to put THAT costume back on, but the thought did make me giggle.

    1. {giggle} One of my favorite Halloween memories is the year I went to a friends party dressed as Tammy Faye. Picked up the tackiest, big-shouldered polyester dress I could find at Goodwill, put on a blonde wig and lots of fake gemstone jewelry and for a finishing touch, went total mary kay with the makeup and even splashed my eye makeup so the mascara would run. Got quite a few laughs.
      maybe you could wear a pink wig and go as Jan Crouch?

      1. Tammy Faye will never go out of style! Who could resist someone who started her own line of “Christian cosmetics,” and applied them to herself with a shovel, even though on almost every one of her daily TV shows she cried until colored streaks ran down her face?

    2. Jenni,

      He-he-he…dress as a fundy. Classic!

      Looooong Khaki skirt
      Long sleave blouse
      Cheap Keds knock offs
      White socks

      Come to think of it….I no longer own any of this stuff!

      Yay me!

      😀

  17. I remembered when I was in a public high school, being a new IFB convert I asked preacher whether I could go to the school’s Mardi Gras. Of course you know the answer.

    In the end I tore up the ticket (what the IFBx pastor wanted me to do) instead of selling it away (which was what I wanted to do) – because if I sell it away – it’s “helping others to sin”.

    Sigh, sigh, sigh. But hey, it’s IFB(x) no more! 😛

  18. I really liked transformers growing up. My mother would allow me to buy the toys, but only if I bought the autobots. I couldn’t buy the decepticons. Oh and the same with GI Joes. Even as an 8 year old (or however old I was) I remember thinking, “this is the stupidest rule ever.” I also remember actually saying, “Well who am I supposed to battle against?” “I don’t know, not my problem.” Well autobots don’t fight themselves you know. Good times.

    1. You made me laugh! I have a young son now, and I DO worry a bit about him identifying with the bad guys not the good guys, but, yeah, who DO you fight against when you’ve only got autobots?

  19. Hmm. Welly well well.
    As a former occultist, (and not the garden-variety “I want to play with a Uoija board and hang out with chicks who smell like patchouli and body odor and have a copy of a book of spells handy to impress my friends”), and one who still has scars on his body where I would cut myself to get blood for certain “encounters”, I find Halloween to be a most deplorable and despicable “holiday”.

    When I was unsaved, I looked at Halloween as my version of Christmas. Nothing good came out of the things I did specifically for Samhain. Nothing.

    I consider, with mild amusement, how the post-modern Christian tends to eschew the reality of Samhain and attempt to “Jesus-fy” it by making sure it is called a “Harvest Festival” or some other such nonsense. (As long as the kids only dress up in fun and happy costumes, it is okay.)

    To me this is subtle deception at its finest. Would I say that if a Christian embraces Halloween that they are bound for Hell and Eternal Damnation? Of course not. That’s not my call to make, ever.

    I would say, though, that when Christians downplay the occult, (And let’s be honest with each other: Halloween glorifies the dead, monsters, witches, etc, but we all view it as harmless and cute. The general feeling of Halloween is not one to foster joy or peace, but fear.), they simply fall prey to being ambivalent towards those things that seek to exalt themselves above the knowledge of Christ.

    Post-modernism, and The Emergent Church Movement, would like to downplay the reality of false spirits and the like because it was what their parents taught them growing up in the church. In their desire to distance themselves from such things and to make sure they resemble nothing of the sort, it is necessary to ridicule and mock the idea that false spirits are real and they actually do hate us all.

    But, hey, like the Satanic Bible teaches: “Do as thou wilt.” Halloween is just child’s play, right? No harm in dressing up and getting candy, is there? I mean, it’s all in good fun, isn’t it?

    Donald in Bethel, CT
    http://warriorchristianity.wordpress.com/2010/09/20/halloween-the-easter-bunny-and-santa-the-great-compromises-of-christianity/

    1. Do you now believe that every time you see someone using “magic” on TV or read about wizards in a book that they are in fact promoting the practice of the occult?

      I think this is one of those places where the “weaker brother” rule actually applies. If you’ve got an association with an event or an observance that causes your conscience to tremble then don’t do it — and we won’t make you. But see that you grant to us the same liberty.

    2. Donald, regarding what you said in your above comment:

      “and one who still has scars on his body where I would cut myself to get blood for certain “encounters”, I find Halloween to be a most deplorable and despicable “holiday”.”

      OK. So you did some really stupid things when you were younger. Who hasn’t? That doesn’t mean that you get to try to instill into us your fear and trepidation of an event that causes you some discomfort because of bad memories. I find this not too far from the fundy who was a drunk, or who came from a family of drunks and becasue of that are convinced that no matter what the bible says, they are against alcohol.

      And I will answer the 3 questions at the end of your comment:
      Yes
      No
      Absolutely

    3. OK, Donald, i looked at your link. Balderdash. You seem to be a cage-stage Calvinist, which is another variety of Fundamentalist. All those “Satanic Things”: Social misfits acting up. I’ve been through the mill – heard all the sermons, read the books (Kurt Koch, anyone?), and here’s the thing: Was Satan defeated at Calvary or not? A demon-behind-every-bush theology necessitates the wrong answer to that question. People love to ascribe to some occultic power the actual sinfullness of their own heart – immoarlity, greed, perversion etc etc. It is not some object, some festival – it is that sinful human heart, the old Adam.

      Santa Claus comes from St nicholas, saint and philantropist (who personally struck Arius because of the latter’s heresy at the council of Nicea – nice Santa story 😛 ). Halloween is the precursor to All Saints Day, when we remember the saintly departed etc etc.

      A lot of “occultic things” are actually the result of shoddy research during the nineteenth century – including a lot of the beliefs of the so-called neopagans etc.

      1. Yes, I’m more that a little suspicious this account as well, anytime someone’s story matches up with a fundy tale of said philosophy/religion/whatever, I have a difficult time buying the validity. Answering the questions, yes, no, and absolutelty. Easiest questions I’ve had all week.

      2. Well said, S.O. People do bad things, but that doesn’t prove that some supernatural force made them do it. We are free from such things in Christ.

        My answers to the three questions: Yes, No, Absolutely.

        1. You mustn’t know very many Calvinists then. Paul Washer, Tim Conway (two massively popular calvinists on youtube) are fundies to the core (and their followers are worse). John Piper and John MacArthur are both fundy in their approach to sanctification (which, as I have noted before to Don, is my only real experience with them when examining the Lordship position of salvation and sanctification). They just preach under a different label, but their message is the same – “you aren’t doing enough to prove you are saved are you sure you are really saved a true Christian would do this and that you are probably going to hell”. Conway preached a sermon where he told his entire congregation most of them were probably going to hell. That kind of preaching is utter bondage and fear mongering.

        2. If you think Macarthur and Piper are fundamentalists then we have two radically different views on fundamentalism.

    4. I don’t have a lot to add to this because…I don’t, but I’m sure you understand that Easter and Christmas both predate things you claim have been hijacked from the church. If it weren’t for those non-christian days there would be no specific remembrance of the Resurrection (other than your average Sunday service) or the birth of Christ.

      “I have maintained that the loudest Jesus ever roared thus far was when He drew His first earthly breath and cried aloud, announcing to the enemies of men that Salvation had arrived.”

      It’s cute. It’s poetic. It ain’t good history but it’s good preachin! And it’s not true.

      1. I was into the occult before I became a Christian. I won’t make any claims about not being a common occultist though. If there’s one thing I notice about occultists is that they are NEVER themselves a common or garden occultist, they are always the chief warlock or whatever. It gives more scary thrills to whatever gullible Christians cross their path.

        Generally I try to steer clear of Halloween, especially as it is now with the American influences. And as we live in a house in the middle of a dark wood we don’t get any trick or treaters visit.

        But our neighbour invites us to her Halloween parties now and in the interest of being sociable we go. Can’t say it does us any harm.

        1. “If there’s one thing I notice about occultists is that they are NEVER themselves a common or garden occultist, they are always the chief warlock or whatever. It gives more scary thrills to whatever gullible Christians cross their path.”

          🙂

    5. I think you’re full of crap, Don. In fact, I think you’re using a schtick to fool gullible people. Lots of great stuff has come out of Halloween: family time, for one thing, as Mom and Dad take the littlest kids over to the neighbors to show a costume and get a treat. And that brings me to the second point: visiting neighbors with your children and establishing bonds. It’s also a drug-free and alcohol-free way to celebrate a holiday. Plus, you get lots of candy!

        1. Ignore Bassenco to your own detriment. She makes more sense in a few sentences than most people can manage in a lifetime.

        2. @Jordan: I’ve got my Halloween costume now. Troll hair, with a tshirt that reads, JOHN. Thanks!

      1. Point of Order!
        Folks Pleese… There is “Don” (moi)
        and now there is “Donald”
        Please let me off the hook and use his full moniker. I have cringed a couple of times until I see the reply is not to me. 😯

    6. Not really sure where to post this reply. Many of you have addressed my comments, but there seems to be no place for me to properly address each of you. Such as it is.

      Okay, so…

      Let’s get down to this, shall we?

      I appreciate your comments, ALL your comments, although of course I disagree with them. Whatever. Not the first time I have disagreed with someone else and I’m quite sure it won’t be the last. No worries.

      I do have a singular and simple question, to those who directly commented on my first real walk into the foray of this website here:

      Do any of you know me? Have any of you read the whole of my blogs and been able to discern anything about me? Or have you simply knee-jerked and thrown comments at me based on this piece of typing above?

      And please believe me, I am not seeking to ask any loaded questions. I might actually know some of you, maybe. I live in Bethel, CT. It’s a small town. Weirder things have happened.

      However, I have this small character flaw that will not allow me to engage in arguments with people I know I shall never meet face-to-face. I learned this from my days of writing for some other Internet sites. I mean, let’s be honest here– we are all just faceless names on computer screens who rant and rave without fear of being known, and we hide behind such anonymity.

      I, at least, provide my real name and real blog address and even invite folks to see who I am on Facebook. (Oh, I’m listed under “House Borsch” on FB. Enjoy.)

      Drawing a very hard line in the sand regarding the Holiness of God is surely not the Fundamentalism you seek to mock. Some of you have made some preposterous presumptions about me, a person you do not know. (By the way, the word ‘balderdash’ used by The Singular Observer,…LOVED IT! That is a great ‘old word’ that needs to be used more often!)

      I reckon what I am failing to say, sorry I am a bit tired tonight, is that you don’t know of the extent I was into the occult. You don’t know my Salvation, or how it is I was confronted by Jesus. You don’t know anything about me other than a small look into my world through my blog Warrior Christianity and A Christian Commentator. Such a shame, really.

      Anyhoos, your comments were noted and filed away in my mental library. Thank you for speaking so…openly.

      Like I mentioned before, I simply do not have the time nor inclination to argue or defend myself against people I shall never actually meet face-to-face this side of Heaven. However, I am quite sure I shall be ‘bumping’ into you on this site.

      Who loves ya, babies.

      Donald in Bethel, CT
      Friday night 15 Oct 2010 2123

      1. Don – I checked out your blog, poked around a bit. Liked how you had an entry just for SFL readers. 🙂
        You have to realize that most of the readers and commenters here are here because of their experiences with fundyism. Usually not pleasant experiences. Because of this we have what you might call “fundar” (sort of like “gaydar” which is the ability to sense someone is gay just by their actions/mannerisms). In other words we can sniff out a fundy from 500 yards 😀
        Seriously though, when we read comments that have hints of “fundyism” in them (like yours kind of did) it’s like sharks with blood in the water.

        Anyway, have a good night and see you around SFL.

        1. Scorpio,

          You said:
          “Because of this we have what you might call “fundar” (sort of like “gaydar” which is the ability to sense someone is gay just by their actions/mannerisms). In other words we can sniff out a fundy from 500 yards 😀
          Seriously though, when we read comments that have hints of “fundyism” in them (like yours kind of did) it’s like sharks with blood in the water.”
          ————————————-

          Seeing how you were so polite as to respond to my last posting without vitriol, (thanks!), I wanted to reciprocate that courtesy.

          Right now I am seeing two distinct camps within The Bride. One being The Fundies and the other being The Emergent Church. I have no allegiance or familiarity with either, save for a knowledge of them based on some real-life experiences and a lot of research.

          So. This website here is very clear about its purpose. I have found myself laughing aloud at some of the photos and such that I have seen here! Seeing as I detest legalism, SEVERELY detest legalism and the machinations of the modern-day Pharisee who seeks to nullify The Scriptures for the sake of their traditions, I was told by a friend about this website and told that I would probably enjoy it. I do. What you call a Fundie, I call a legalist. Semantics, I reckon. But the same thought prevails.

          I do have a very, very hard-line stance on The Holiness of God. I say this as to mean I loathe it when anything, be it man-made or otherwise, seeks to infringe upon His Holiness. I have a hard-line stance on Halloween, ’tis true, because like I noted, when I was in The World I embraced the occult and Halloween was my version of Christmas for the Christians. (Someone said that they believed I was misleading others or seeking to shock others with my confession about being in the occult. So it goes. I have nothing to prove and will let The Holy Spirit reveal if I am lying or if I am speaking the Truth. Anyhoos…)

          By my having such a hard-line stance on The Holiness of God, does this make me a Fundie? I also have an extremely hard-line in the sand about Jesus being the Way, Truth, and Life and no person comes to The Father but through Him. Does this also make me a Fundie? (I am asking these questions openly to you, Scorpio, because like I said, you have been polite to me.)

          Perhaps I need to acquaint myself with what the general consensus is around here regarding what a Fundie is and is not. It seems to be as fluid of a definition much like what defines The Emergent Church. Kinda like grasping at smoke. You now it when you see it, but it is impossible to accurately define. (Did that make sense?)

          I detest Halloween because I know the spirit behind it. I detest anything that seeks to instill fear or glorify the occult, especially when it is presented in a nice shiny wrapper for folks to enjoy and indulge in. But that’s just my take on it, I reckon. Like I said, do I believe if a Christian takes part in Halloween that they are going to Hell? Oh my. Of course not. Such an idiotic and impetuous remark to make. I simply view it as not being the best thing a Christ-follower could do. (Cue the responses where Christians here will now say I am trying to force my opinions on them, and blah blah blah.) Listen, I have nothing spiritual to mention about smoking cigarettes, but I also know they ain’t exactly healthy. So if I said, “Hey, you shouldn’t smoke. It’s not good for you.”, I know the knee-jerkers will say I am being a Fundie legalist. Oy.

          I appreciate your responses, Scorpio. For what it is worth, that is. Like I mentioned, this is the Internet, and what do you and I really know about one another? I’m just a bunch of words typed out on a computer screen.

          I look forward to “seeing you” again, Scorpio. Oh, and to those who would challenge my “credibility”: Seriously. Go screw yourselves. I don’t have the time to engage in tedious back-and-forths with jackasses. I would hope you feel the same way about me.

          See ya, Scorpio. Have a great weekend. I know I will.

          Let God be true and every man a liar, indeed.

          Donald Borsch Jr.
          Bethel, CT

        2. Emergence did kind of just fade away a few years ago. There still are more movements and directions going on than simply emergence or fundyism. Life is rarely as simple as a dichotomous. (SP?) choice like that.

        3. Donald, What a person believes about God, Jesus and Truth does not by themselves make that person a fundie. It is how that person applies their interpretation of these things that would define if they fit the moniker of “a fundy”.
          That is a very fluid definition, for what is a fundy to me may not be a fundy to someone else. May I suggest that you spend some time going through old posts and comments here to get a feel for what is generally considered a fundy.
          That would help paint a picture so you can see what might be triggers for some of us.
          One more thing, and I do want to be careful how I say this as you have been courteous to me……I would tone down the “You don’t know me” and “I’m not here for an argument” rhetoric. You can’t wander into a blog and post comments, that touched a nerve with some people, and then hide behind those statements becasue people disagree with you. I’m just saying, I’m not trying to get into an argument 😀

        4. Scorpio,

          To respond to your latest comment:
          You said-
          One more thing, and I do want to be careful how I say this as you have been courteous to me……I would tone down the “You don’t know me” and “I’m not here for an argument” rhetoric. You can’t wander into a blog and post comments, that touched a nerve with some people, and then hide behind those statements becasue people disagree with you. I’m just saying, I’m not trying to get into an argument 😀
          ————————–

          Understood and noted, Scorpio. My insistence on saying such things is to stop any needless discussions or debates or arguments about things that we probably will not agree upon. (I am using “we” in the generic sense. I am not referring to you.)

          However, again, I appreciate your courteous tone and I hope to dialogue with you again. I am analyzing this whole Fundie-Emergent thing in my spirit and I hope to soon be able to lay something out there to define them both accurately. Thus far, on this website, I see that it is either one or the other, and not a lot of middle ground. And some folks here are here strictly to bash Fundies for the sole purpose of, well, bashing Fundies. While this is amusing, it isn’t where I am at. I would much prefer to attack the spirit behind legalism and the like. Just sayin’.

          Always a pleasure to ‘chat’ with you, Scorpio. 😀

        5. My Catholic deacon said I shouldn’t smoke. I don’t think he’s a fundamentalist Baptist.

          The irony of all ironies is, he was talking about how my body is a temple AS he was borrowing a lighter from me to light his incense.

          Dunno, maybe you Catholics out there will get it.

          Very entertaining thread. But I have to finish my Harry Potter movie before my poker tourney starts.

      2. “However, I have this small character flaw that will not allow me to engage in arguments with people I know I shall never meet face-to-face.”

        But apparently will allow you to begin said argument. If you’re going to post here, you can’t make such bold statements of opinion, then hide under the “You don’t know me!” rock when replies disagree with you. Since most of us don’t actually know most of the others here, we have to take comments themselves on their own.

        1. Diachenko,

          Not seeking an argument. Not seeking to engage in endless debate. I took the liberty that is afforded all of us and said what I wished to say and then that was it.

          I have no desire to have any other dialogues but ones that edify. I can go to The World and the atheists if I want to have a good argument!

          So far, “Scorpio”, a commenter here, has responded to me in such fashion as to actually appear to want to chat. I dig that.

          But when presumptions are made about me, what’s the point? I am bringing myself to this table, if you will, to share what I know and Who I know. I’m definitely not looking to be bombarded and then respond endlessly. Who wants that? I have other things to attend to.

          Thanks for reading!

          Donald in Bethel, CT

      3. The thing is that satanism is far more of the “do as thou wilt” than it is the halloween hollywood type witchcraft depicted in goofy movies and preached in fundyland, and I can’t help but question those stories. Do as thou wilt thing is unredemptive enough (on even just a human level without any use of God or scriptures to condemn it). Halloween is just a commercial holiday/event to sell candy and costumes. If you truly are disturbed by it, you shouldn’t participate, and I suspect most people Christian or not would respect that in person once tbhey knew

        1. I’ve seen Church of Satan-variety Satanism described as “Ayn Rand with horns on”, which is pretty apt.

  20. I do have a question about all this:

    Where is the line drawn as far as separation from the world?

    I understand that just because a song, show, movie displays something sinful does not necessarily promote that sinful activity. However, I personally believe that Harry Potter promotes magic and all that stuff as well as living a life with the exclusion of God. Does it promote good things as well? Yes, the characters display tremendous amounts of love and friendship for each other and care for one another, which is always a good thing.

    I’m trying to get grips around what is true separation from the world. Someone please help me out.

    1. Don’t you think some of that is for each individual Christian to decide where his weaknesses or sinful propensities are and to avoid those? As far as Harry Potter, when I allowed my daughter to read them, I asked her to not act them out. I didn’t want her pretending to be casting spells and having magic powers. I felt she could READ about it, but I didn’t want her mentally putting herself in the position of a witch.

      A weird weakness in Harry Potter was its lack of clarity on the afterlife. Where DID his loved ones go when they passed beyond the curtain? Was there an afterlife? If so, what was it like and what qualified you to be there?

      (BTW, we all use Harry Potter as an example, but what about Percy Jackson and the Olympians?)

      1. I understand that it’s a part of Christian liberty, and one must use wisdom. I just need to remind myself that it is possible to read books like this and not feel like you’re be influenced by its un-Christian characteristics and morales.

      2. One thing that I think makes Harry Potter great for kids is that the magic is so *unrealistic.* Disappearing rooms, invisibility cloaks, candy that hops around, shrinking buses … these are not things that anyone would expect in reality. I think kids have a better grasp on what is real and what is pretend than adults often give them credit for.

    2. There are two things to define here: first is the ‘world’ and second is how we get corrupted by it.

      The world is not ‘the stuff the world dose’, like going to work and eating candy bars and having facial hair. The world is the system Satan is using to pull people away from Christ and attempt to take God’s glory. It is easier to spot then most think sence it always manifests itself in the same things – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life.

      How we are corrupted is from what we do, not what we see, taste, smell, etc. It is not what comes into a man that defiles him, but what comes out. Keep in mind, however, that the choice to watch, read or listen to something for entertainment (where you have a choice and already know the content) is an act.

      Our primary concern, however, is not to be void of worldliness, but to be filled with godliness. You want to stay away from the flesh – then walk in the Spirit.

    3. In my case, I have to know my own weaknesses and not play into them.

      I’m not tempted in the least to practice witchcraft, so I’m OK with someone reading Harry Potter even though I don’t read it myself (not really into novels). I do, however, have a nasty temper; so I do not play certain online games involving violence because I simply don’t need that stuff bouncing around my head. Some of my friends have to avoid HP but can play the games without a problem.

    4. Remember Joe, if you personally believe something, and then you make it public, it’s not personal any more. It’s public, and you are seeking commentary, rebuttal, discussion, etc. All of those are fine, but they are public, not personal.

      Moving on from that, if you are offended by Harry Potter, don’t read it. (I have never read an HP book or seen an HP movie, BTW.) But if you check both Romans and I Corinthians, you will see that Christians have a wide latitude. There are aspects of Halloween that I think are bad, but it’s my decision to draw the line, and I draw it where I think best. Somebody else may draw it here, and somebody else may draw it there. But int he end, neither Halloween nor Harry Potter can harm the Christ who conquered death.

    5. @AJ
      Have you ever read the Harry Potter Books? If not I would highly recommend reading them.

      My problem with Americanized Christianity is the weak, anemic, powerless, god it presents. The fundy god especially, is so weak and pathetic that he can not protect his own from the daily sin we all deal with, so he has to have a cadre of lawmen with their multitudiness “Thou Shalt Not’s” protecting his own.

      The weaker the view of god the more legalistic the M-O-g.

      1. That’s something I’ve been noticing in the last year or so – what an anemic God so many of us really believe in. We say that we believe in an almighty, omnipotent, good God, but our actions often show that we really believe in gid-in-a-box. For example, I had a dear friend ask me a few months ago if she committed a grave sin (which she was planning to do) did I think that some time in the future there could be any remote possibility that God might still be able to forgive and accept her if she should seek Him. I was shocked that she, a woman born and bred in the depths of Fundyism and Baptistic religiosity, could possibly doubt the ability of our God to forgive sin. I mean, what do we think Christ came for? Just for fun? No! To forgive sinners!! Because He loves us for no good reason! And since there never was a good reason for that love, since we were fundamentally sinful to begin with, adding another sin isn’t going to somehow make God suddenly unable to cope with our sinfulness. We have a very poor understanding of the depth of our own depravity (I think sometimes we don’t really believe the Bible – “The heart of man is desperately wicked, who can know it?”) and we compound that error with a commensurately poor understanding of the scope of God’s grace, love, and mercy! Being forgiven was never about us – it is and always has been about God!

  21. “Halloween glorifies the dead, monsters, witches, etc, but we all view it as harmless and cute.” I’ve seen this, and I do personally have a big problem with glorifying the dark side. It seems that there are many levels to Halloween: 1) families having fun dressing up and getting candy, 2) teens using the day as an excuse to act out, 3) people trying to get away with dressing provocatively and behaving more outrageously that they would normally, 4) people indulging in displaying morbid, grim things (maybe a little “whistling in the dark”; we know we’re all going to die, but one day a year we’ll make fun of all that we secretly fear — of course, in Christ we needn’t fear death, but I speak in general), and 5) people involved in paganism celebrating their “white magic” and 6) people trying to honor Satan.

    Is there a place for “to the pure all things are pure”? For people who have never participated in the dark meaning behind Halloween, can they see it as a fun way to participate in the community? (We always enjoyed seeing and greeting our neighbors who usually hide in air-conditioned houses playing video games!)

    If I put a jack-o-lantern on my porch to frighten away evil spirits, I as a Christian would be sinning, because Christ is my strength not superstitious rituals. But what if I just put it out as a decoration? (The same thing would apply to Christmas trees. Does having one automatically mean you are honoring an ancient pagan ritual?)

    I know people who think Christians bands like Third Day “bad” because loud music with a beat reminds them of their sinful behavior in clubs before they were saved. But does that mean that the music is bad or that it is just wrong form those particular people? Having not indulged in the club scene AT ALL EVER 🙂 I have no sinful memories with such music and feel nothing but joy when I listen! Can Halloween fall under this sort of Christian liberty?

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and praise the Lord that He redeemed and rescued you!

    1. Thank you again, PW, for speaking what I was thinking. I think this is one of those instances where, for example, if my friend gets in my car, I will respect her beliefs by not playing music that offends her (whether she’s Fundy and therefore offended or recently saved from a clubbing lifestyle and therefore offended or what have you), but I also will not look at someone who listens to things that I won’t listen to and think, “Man, that person is SO unspiritual. I’m glad I’m not a sinner like them. Dude.”

      I think many of the Fundy rules are simply there to make sure that no one ever offends anyone else at all, which becomes complicated, because anything can be offensive. There was a student at BJ when I was there who was campaigning to make women not wear backless shoes b/c he thought seeing women’s heels was too revealing.

    2. I think Halloween is a great way to introduce the concept of death into our thinking. Yes, it is cathartic, and it does get those little kids to stop and think every now and then about some heavy stuff.

    3. PW, I’m two years out of fundyland. I had been having my doubts about it (fundies) and moving away probably a couple of years before actually making the move. This halloween business though was one I pretty much agreed with the “man of God” on. But after reading yours and others comments I may decide to ease up alittle bit. Btw I can tell you have alot of wisdom and appreciate you sharing it with the rest of us. TKS

  22. Col. 2 and 3 have greatly strengthened me with regards to the issues separation and Christian liberty.

    Col. 2 tells us that we are redeemed by Christ and that we are not to be bound by man-made regulations. What God has not said, we do not say. Anything sinful with celebrating Halloween? Or listening to rock music? Or even going to a club? The Scriptures are silent!

    So many of these rules and disciplines with the intention to stop one from sinning (which is what IFBs are famous for), they may look good on the outside, they may be good for discipline, but they do nothing to curb the desires of the fallen heart, from which originates evil things.

    But, Col. 3 also says if we are risen, we should seek Christ. Set our minds on Him, not on the things of this world. Pursue compassion, humility, gentleness, etc. Love God. Love others. Flee ungodly desires (lust, greed, hatred etc.). Such is the antidote against sin. Now examine some of the fundies, when they gloat over some evangelical leader when they get involved in a scandal, instead of feeling sorrow and compassion. Is this Christian love?

    So I believe things which the Bible is silent, we should decide for ourselves, will this help us in our (and others’) walk with God? Give you one example – alcohol. Some Christians glorify God by partaking in it – in moderation. Some glorify God by abstinence, knowing their own physical weakness (get drunk easily). Either way both glorify God through the gift of temperance.

    That’s the strength of Christian liberty. Many choices, one purpose.

    1. “So many of these rules and disciplines with the intention to stop one from sinning (which is what IFBs are famous for), they may look good on the outside, they may be good for discipline, but they do nothing to curb the desires of the fallen heart, from which originates evil things.”

      It never ceases to amaze me how Fundamentalism in general underestimates or flat out ignores the power of the Spirit in a life.

      They paint the picture that all that stands between us and certain eradication at the hands of an overwhelming enemy is the walls and standards we erect with our own hands. There is vey little attention given to growing in grace and becoming more mature and able to interact with life without falling. The overwhelming majority of IFB people I have meet (particularly in the south) are consumed with fear and have no concept or hope of victory or recovery from the sin that is closing in on them – held back only by the standards they think will protect them.

      1. The only thing the Holy Spirit does in a fundy is “convict” them. Even though Jesus said the Spirit only convicts unbelievers of sin (John 16). If all the Holy Spirit did (supposedly), was make me feel bad, no wonder they try to find ways to do his job instead.

        1. Too true. 🙁

          As far as ‘conviction’ is concerned, the religion of many fundamentalists is every bit as emotionally dependent as the ‘feel good’ churches they criticize. The difference is the fundamentalists are dependent on negative emotions rather then positive ones.

          As far as the Holy Spirit is concerned, I think 1 Cor. 3 states His role in conforming us into the image of God very well.

          I have never thought about the Spirit only convicting unbelievers – I’m not sure I agree, but I shall give it more thought.

      1. Lol at the question. I laugh at the idea of “Christian clubs” where there’s no booze and dance and where there’s CCM. If you want the real deal, hang out at a real, “secular” club.

        As a college student, what burdens me the most is why conservative evangelical Christianity, whether it is Arminian, reformed or fundamentalist or otherwise, is WHY have they ignored folks our age.

        I see many people my age, these ‘happening’ people, they work hard for their degrees, they party hard, travel, wine and dine. They are discovering the world out there. I befriend many of them, hang out with them from time to time, and try to understand them.

        And cultural-conservative “Religious Right” Christianity as a whole views them as heathens and disapprove their lifestyle. They are quick to associate their lifestyles with gangsterism, drunkenness, immorality, fornication etc. That’s why 20 somethings DON’T go to church. You can package all you want including “Christian clubs” and talk nice to them but they still won’t come because they know the church DISAPPROVES their lifestyle WHOLESALE.

        Many think, “Ok, stop trying to preach to us because we know what you’re saying. You’re not REALLY interested in us. You just want us to mould into your defined lifestyle. You don’t care about us. You think you’re more MORAL than us. But you don’t behave like Christ with your judgmentalism. No way!”

        And then they hit their 30s, they get married, then they come back to the church. ‘Cos their priorities have changed to child-rearing. But hey, isn’t a church supposed to have people of all ages?

        You win people by example. Sure, bars and clubs have their temptations, and it is our duty to warn one another of its potential pitfalls, and some of us should abstain if we believe it is bad for our walk with Christ.

        You understand why I attend a conservative traditional (and reformed) church in spite of all that I said? Because these folks care and nurture and love one another. Encourage? Yes. Warn? Certainly. But they never act as though they are God or “His anointed”.

        One great illustration of how the virtue of Christian love is shown when a old-fashioned churchman can sit down at the same pew and worships God together with a “in-fashion” young adult.

        The Kingdom of Heaven is not about food or drink but about righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. (See Romans 14:17).

  23. The fundy church I was in always had the kids wear their costumes on a Wednesday night and they would set up the SS rooms and hand out candy. There was a list handed out beforehand of what could and what could not be not be worn of course. Can’t have the flock exercising their own spiritual discernment for goodness sake.

    1. For us, the issue wasn’t the flock being unable to exercise spiritual discernment because they could. Our guidelines were for the neighborhood kids who came without parents. They had NO guidance at all, so we tried to help because we really didn’t want bloody vampire hookers at our church harvest celebration.

        1. OK, maybe I was exaggerating a bit on the hookers part, but the costumes I’ve seen kids wear today are pretty shocking. (Uh-oh, now I sound like a REALLY old person!)

  24. I heard about the Smurfs when in Highschool- long after they were off the air, of course.

    I had to chase my eyeballs across the room…..

    Speaing of the Smurfs, has anyone noticed the Smurf toys? I was all excited thiking that maybe they will comeback like Care Bears and My Little Pony- but no. *cry*

  25. “unless the writer’s name happens to be Lewis or perhaps Tolkien”

    Ah, Tolkien and Lewis. This blatant inconsistency used to drive me crazy; so, in my legalistic youth I religiously avoided all appearance of make-believe. I abhorred these two even though I had never read them.

    When I discovered that fantasy and mythology was not filled with mind-gremlins who would jump inside me and involuntarily transform me into a Satanist, I read some.

    Now I’m about half way through writing a fantasy novel of my own. :mrgreen:

    In other news: I have read Harry Potter and I cannot cast spells.

    1. Agnes Moorehead’s daddy was a conservative Presbyterian preacher who sympathized with BJSr. She was considered a “friend” of the school. I like to think it was just a joke, but, who knows?

      1. No, no, no any monies that BoJo may have received from Ms. Morehead was “Showboat” royalties. Perfectly acceptable to take “that” money given BJ’s history regarding race relations.

  26. I thought this stuff died down in the ’80s. I guess I just don’t run in the right circles any more. I remember my dad having Bob Larson books. In high school, I drew the symbols I learned from my dad’s Christian books on the occult on my notebooks to look “spooky.” 😯

  27. The end result of ALL of this back when I was a kid and spending Saturday afternoons looking for jackal heads in the ice cubes of liquor ads in the TV Guide?

    0% respect for the adults all around me who “raised” me. In fact, they now know and have known for years that it was all a bunch of bunk, but will not admit it. Which puts that 0% into negative numbers. 🙄

    1. Ooooh, you just reminded me of that 70s book, “Subliminal Seduction,” about how all the magazine ads had naughty pictures and/or words hidden in them. It was fun, but ultimately fairly preposterous. Most of the examples given were like those “Magic Eye” images– try as I might, I never saw the hidden picture.

  28. A couple of general comments: Harry Potter – great books. Instead of bit*****, uh, complaining about them, why doesn’t some good, Christian author come up with 800 page books kids would want to read? Complain all you want, give the world quality back and watch the response. I’ve used “The Gospel According to Harry Potter” for middle school Sunday school before and it’s great.

    You who have children make the ultimate decision about your kid’s trick-or-treating, and, those of us who don’t have children or who made different choices should shut up and respect other people’s choices.

    I do believe in the Occult, but I doubt trick-or-treating or even Ouija boards will “open a door” to that “lifestyle.” People really need to come up with better conspiracy theories than “Proctor and Gamble is an occult organization,” and, “Ouija boards are blessed by Satanic priests at the factory.” C’mon. God gave us brains and sense.

    1. I am very disappointed with most Christian fiction I read. There are some incredible YA authors out there whose work blows away anything I see coming from Christian authors; whenever I read them, I find myself wishing I could find a Christian author who wrote so compellingly and convincingly.

      1. There’s a Christian series I loved as a YA called “The Chronicles of Joona.” It’s sadly out of print, but can be found used on Amazon.com. I highly recommend it.

    2. There are a few, but they tend to be imitations of popular secular books.

      However, and it’s not really “Christian” in any real sense, except a lot of the stories take place in an abbey, the Redwall series is really good for kids. It’s about a bunch of nice little critters (animals – mice, otters, hedgehogs and stuff) that live in an abbey. And the rats and ferrets are evil (mostly). Plus the badgers have massive armour and live in a giant mountain fortress named Salamandatrom. I fondly remember them.

    3. What do you mean by “Christian” fiction? Fiction written by a Christian? Fiction written by a Christian with no magical elements? Fiction written by a Christian that relates fictional conversions?

      I am a Christian, and I would like very much to write fiction. But it is unlikely that I will ever incorporate very much of my daily faith into my writing. Worldview, yes; Christ, no. I believe it’s close impossible for even the best writer to pen a fictional encounter with Christ that will do Him justice. The experiences I’ve had with those published authors who try are uniformly poor, and other students who tried when I took some writing classes in school bordered on the unintentionally sacrilegious.

      All this to say that there is possibly much good “Christian” fiction out there that is not advertised as such. As for the fundies themselves generating good fiction, well… hope isn’t exactly springing eternal.

      1. I’m using “Christian fiction” as an advertising term: the books marketed under Bethany, Tyndale, Zonderzan, etc. for the Christian market. When I hit used book sales, I look for Christian publishing companies, then check out the book’s title and author to see if I’m interested. I own TONS of books marketed as Christian fiction, and I am highly disappointed in nearly all of them.

        “All this to say that there is possibly much good “Christian” fiction out there that is not advertised as such.” Absolutely! They’re just harder to find! (A fav of mine is a trilogy by Penelope Wilcock; book one is “The Hawk and the Dove.”)

        1. Again to my rant against the Americanized Christian Sub-culture.

          Today’s rant takes on the “Label it Christian” marketing system.

          I would rather read a good book written by a Christian laced with his/her Biblical worldview than to read a book written specifically for the “Christian” sub-culture market.

          end rant: 😯

    4. Seriously. I just can’t understand how people think that if it were indeed possible to talk to the dead, that the tool needed would come mass produced from a Chinese sweat shop.

  29. I remember my mother becoming fearful of “Occult” influences soon after we moved within range of a religious talk radio station. Saturday morning cartoons became an ordeal. She thought that the Ghostbusters franchise was the worst thing ever.

    When we moved to The Bible Belt, she discovered Bob Larson on the radio. He was a mixed bag of a one-man inquisition of whatever he thought was in league with the Occult, and he was also entertaining in a sensationalistic way.

    Many of these stories seemed to be “I heard it from someone, who knows someone. . .” kind of stories. Like an Ouija Board story about how one night, someone disturbed the wrong evil spirit, and it came alive, started to levitate then fly around the room, screaming, took three people to hold it down, while someone else got an axe, hacked it up, threw it in the fireplace, and the next morning it materialized on the back porch, intact. Heard this one from a kid at Fundie private school.

    Eighth grade homeroom teacher from the same school, played This Present Darkness audiobook. He thought it was important, because this novel demonstrated, through hammy but spooky oral interpretation, his demon-behind-every-tree cosmology, and The-New Age Movement – will – reach – critical mass – someday world view. This teacher said he knew of someone who had the ability to levitate during Transcendental Meditation. Can’t recall if he knew this person personally, or knew somebody who knew him or her. He also claimed to know a witch, when he was younger, that had powers of telekinesis. She could make small appliances and other objects fly around a room. This guy fashioned himself as an expert on The Occult.

    1. incredibly, none of this is caught on a simple camera phone, ever AND no enterprising occultist thought to open a bewitching Vegas show. It would sell out and imagine the savings on special effects!

  30. Darrell, this also ties in with some of earlier “if its old its ok, if its modern, its not” posts.
    Example: Hansel and Gretel, ok. Nightmare Before Christmas, no.

  31. i think halloween is anathema to fundies not so much because of the devils and ghosts and satanism and what-have-you, it’s because it’s an acknowledgment of the Catholic liturgical calendar, insofar as it’s the eve of all-Saints’ day. and we know that nothing is more steeped in the occult than the dreaded romish poperist church.

    (as an aside- the Orthodox all-Saints’ day is always the sunday after Pentecost, which i suppose would make our halloween the saturday after Pentecost (usually sometime in may). if we were to dress up as things that are scary to old-country Orthodox people, i guess we’d be dressing up as moslems & communists)

    1. “if we were to dress up as things that are scary to old-country Orthodox people, i guess we’d be dressing up as moslems & communists”

      Or Presbyterians.

      1. Ha! although Presbyterians are less likely to chop off your head for not becoming a Presbyterian, and i don’t think the commies were too keen on the Presbies.

        The greeks would just be confused, since the word for priest is presbyter, and the priest’s wife is presbytera.

    2. Fundies have “instant history” as part of their culture. They tend to think that the entire history of the world revolves around them. I think anything that predates Fundamentalism is suspect by them. Anything that is not embedded into their distinct retelling of all things (like that Baptists go all the way back to John the Baptist, that wine in the Bible is grape juice, that the New Testament churches were all independent, autonomous, churches, etc.) is highly suspect to them, and they instinctively try to shut it down.

      True, Reader Mo, Catholicism is a handy target. But even without it, I think the fundies would be howling about Halloween.

  32. fundies should make a special candy corn (we’ll call it “fundy corn”) that has the plan of salvation colors instead of the evil, pagan, harvest-worshiping brown, orange, & yellow.

    it can have black (for our hearts), red (for the blood of Jesus), and white (for our hearts after accepting the aforementioned red).

    they might wanna put some blue in there somewhere, too, since blue is on ol’ glory (the symbol of gid’s chosen nation).

    Then there can be a fundier-than-thou group that rejects the fundy corn as “worldly”.

      1. Now, now, don’t go correcting established traditional imagery with what the Bible actually says. Besides, who’s going to notice a red layer next to a red layer. 😎

  33. There were a few trade paperbacks that my mother used as warning guides against the fear of New Age infiltration of pop culture. I remember reading Like Lambs to The Slaughter by Johanna Michaelsen, for a book report. She claimed that certain New Age practices for children were undergoing beta testing in gifted classes in California public schools, and coming to your kid’s school in Middle America. She also made some rather extraordinary claims about children’s experience with demonic manifestation. I’ve read a few chapters of her memoir The Beautiful Side of Evil, and I have a hard time believing in the concept of Psychic Surgery, which she claimed to have been an assistant to a creepy Mexican psychic surgeon. She recalled how she was able to sense and even see various evil spirits. Psychic surgery is an obvious con game involving pork blood and chicken fat.

    Another book was Ravaged by The New Age by Texe Marrs. Profoundly paranoid, along with his other works of the same theme. Today, Marrs has gone off the deep end with his paranoid conspiracy theories, but back then he was regarded as an authority on The New Age Movement.

    Authors who wrote about warnings of The New Age Movement all had a common belief that it would develop into the One-World Religion of The False Prophet, and I think this worked even a little bit better on many Evangelicals who did not necessarily hold to strong anti-Catholic sentiments, and did not necessarily have solid preconceptions about The Vatican being The Whore of Babylon.

    1. I thought I heard that this Johanna Michaelsen was discovered to be a big fake much like the much-touted “ex-super-high-powered warlock” Mike Warnke. At one time, he was a very popular speaker on the occult until it was uncovered that he was full of crap.

    1. Down page, the entry “Memorable Sermons”, still has more replies at the present moment. I’d say, in the end, probably. Because if any of us remember the ’80s, tales of Satanism were real, some of our parents got scared over New Age Movement Conspiracy that was supposed to be something of the Last Days, and was everywhere. As a result, I did for some time, have a fear of the dark. Many of us have lots of scary stories.

  34. ‘even unicorns can be construed to be the subtle hand of the New Age Movement subtly instilling a love of Satan in people’s hearts.

    Unicorns??? Who put them into the KJV then??

    (Job 39:9-12)

    1. But. . .but. . .the Unicorn Tapestries were woven about 1500AD. What’s New Age about that? Oh, I forgot–Fundie history doesn’t go back that far.

  35. -“[Driscoll]’s a fundamentalist in reformed clothing”
    -“There are those of us who would consider Mohler fundamentalist 2.0.”
    -“a cage-stage Calvinist, which is another variety of Fundamentalist.”
    -(former post) “New Calvinism [referring to MacArthur, Piper, and Mahaney] still has many fundy characteristics.”
    -(former post) “[Holiness Pentecostal] is a different stripe of fundie.”
    -“anytime someone’s story matches up with a fundy tale of said philosophy/religion/whatever, I have a difficult time buying the validity.”

    All of these quotes (two exceptions) are taken from the comments on this one post. It’d be interesting to go through SFL’s comments history and compile more like them. Based on the sampled data, the whole world would be considered fundamentalist. But don’t you dare accuse the commenters here of seeing a fundy behind every bush…

    Moral of the story: if you don’t like someone, call them a Fundamentalist. It automatically validates your disagreement with them, makes their whole ministry suspect, and elevates you to a place of relevance and discernment.

    Bible teachers beware: agreeing with a fundamentalist on absolutely anything, or even something that sounds like a fundie might say, makes you one of them.

    And “ex-fundies” will then perform second-degree separation on you. It’s contagious, ya know.

      1. Yes, but a frustrated one, who is clearly tired of the constant name calling, and criticism you get on a severla times a week or more. And is sensing the same thing here, when most commenters have left the nuthouses, enjoying life, and laughing at ours recognitions of our own pasts. Obv that can be painful for people still living there.

    1. Lowercase Dave

      Ah! Common sense rears it’s head here for once!

      “But don’t you dare accuse the commenters here of seeing a fundy behind every bush…”

      Exactamundo! The rule here is to label and ostracize any not specifically in the camp as fundies, you know—EXACTLY as they accuse fundies of doing with the “liberal” label.

      “ex-fundies” my foot–they just changed brands so they could smoke, drink and still be judgemental and self righteous.

      ….and they don’t even know it!

      Bleh, they just don’t like wearing khaki
      😮

      1. ‘“ex-fundies” my foot–they just changed brands so they could smoke, drink and still be judgemental and self righteous.’

        Since leaving fundyland, I’ve been more free from sin than I ever was with all the laws and rules.

        1. People like John and lowercase dave aren’t even worth responding to. They just love to come on sites like this and cause trouble. Like all fundies they’re not happy unless they’re making someone else angry or miserable.

          And hey, you two–go ahead and respond and know that I’m over here laughing at you.

        2. lowercase dave is just a college kid, and he is worth responding to. Have compassion on him and pull him out of the fire. He’s genuinely upset by what he is reading here and he’s raising his points of criticism. If you can’t form an answer don’t blame him: blame yourself.

      2. “so they could smoke, drink”

        John – don’t forget dancing, fornicating, getting tatoos, voting democrat, listening to rock music.
        I always say go big or stay home 😀

    2. lowercase dave: -“[Driscoll]’s a fundamentalist in reformed clothing”
      -“There are those of us who would consider Mohler fundamentalist 2.0.”
      -“a cage-stage Calvinist, which is another variety of Fundamentalist.”
      -(former post) “New Calvinism [referring to MacArthur, Piper, and Mahaney] still has many fundy characteristics.”
      -(former post) “[Holiness Pentecostal] is a different stripe of fundie.”
      -“anytime someone’s story matches up with a fundy tale of said philosophy/religion/whatever, I have a difficult time buying the validity.”

      Well dave help us out. Provide a definition for what a Fundamentalist is, and perhaps the writers of the comments you quoted (or others) can explain how these people strike them as Fundamentalist in behavior.

      It doesn’t get Fundamentalism off the hook to point out that somebody who blames Fundamentalism too much is wrong. We’re stills tuck with a disobedient religion full of child molesters and all manner of unspeakable abominations, which refuses to police itself and has built a counterfeit holiness based on parameters not even mentioned in Scripture.

      1. Fundamentalism has so many definitions. Some say it’s just adhering to the fundamentals of the faith, which makes almost everyone a fundamentalist. Practically, fundies won’t call you one of their own unless you’re a militant separatist with conservative music in your services. As an exfundy, I tend (wrongly) to define fundamentalism as strict standards, closed mindedness and pretty much everything we snark on here. However, standards, polity, theology etc aren’t really the dangers of the movement. So when I hear that Piper doesn’t own a TV, my “fundar” does ping, but it shouldn’t. When I hear Mohler is anti-yoga, I get another ping, but remember just because someone has a seemingly unreasonable standard, it doesn’t make them fundy. The true dangers of fundamentalism is their abusive nature. I don’t care if they want to live separately, wait for the rapture and never hear a backbeat….just don’t harbor molesters, worship the pastor, demand faithfulness to the organization, manipulate, abuse spiritually etc. As Jeff VanVonderen said (paraphrasing) “I don’t separate over anything, except grace.”

        1. In my opinion, the polity of the IFB is a huge danger of the movement. It’s what makes each “mannagawd” a mini-pope, and it has created a system of near total immunity for preachers because accountability itself is considered evil.

          But for lc-dave to get clear on why people would classify Piper and MacArthur as fundies, he needs to supply his definition of Fundamentalism so that whoever made the claim can at least clarify the point.

          As for Mohler and yoga, it’s not a problem if Mohler doesn’t *do* yoga. The fact that he took it upon himself to start condemning all yoga (“eating meat offered to idols”) as a spiritual danger even to those who do it only for stretching does make him a Judaizer or legalist. And that’s certainly similar to the broo-ha-ha that the fundies are so often clamoring over in regard to many modern past times or holidays.

          I classify the thinking of Mohler as ancient Gnosticism: the idea that a seemingly harmless behavior is rich with spiritual influence because it is part of an intricate and mysterious web of spiritual strands that bind us. And that brand of old Gnosticism is found all over Fundamentalism. Nothing is merely meat or denim or make-believe or candy or stretching: it’s all part of an esoteric but unseen reality that has enormous spiritual consequences and that makes us dependent on the enlightened preacher to navigate us safely. And that BS. More precisely, it’s warmed over Gnosticism.

        2. @bass: I agree with everything you said. ::exiting stage, going back to pencil sharpening:: 😀

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