Politics

A story of fundy craziness ripped from recent headlines (or page E8, whichever comes first)

Two Oklahoma City Council candidates attend a church observers have criticized for flying the Confederate flag, making political commentary from the pulpit and training children to use automatic weapons at a church camp.

Windsor Hills Baptist Church‘s activities have been described as radical by critics who fear it could influence city council decisions if its members are elected Tuesday.

Tom Vineyard, senior pastor at Windsor Hills Baptist Church, said the church stands by its actions, especially the firearms training.

“I’m not going to have a silent voice just because I’m the pastor of a church,” Vineyard said. “You cannot be a good Christian if you’re not a good citizen. In order to be a good citizen, you’ve got to be active; you’ve got to participate in what’s going on.”

Windsor Hills Baptist Church is an independent, fundamental Baptist church. The church runs Windsor Hills Baptist School and Oklahoma Baptist College, all at 5517 NW 23 in Oklahoma City.

Read the full story at newsok.com
(and don’t miss a few follow-up facts from GetReligion.com)

157 thoughts on “Politics”

  1. Seriously? This isn’t that crazy. I mean I don’t see why a church needs to teach kids how to use weapons but people get weapons training all the time. The part about them teaching girls how to shoot? I think that’s probably worthwhile. Women are often at a disadvantage when attacked by men and proper firearms training might be what it takes to help equalize the situation.

    From what I read it said they had a play or reenactment of some sort where they had North versus South and of necessity would have confederate flags. The article didn’t say they flew a confederate flag, contrary to the headline.

    Their politicking is no different than what goes on in African American churches every election cycle.

    It seems a bit odd and they’re probably fundies but the article doesn’t read as badly as the headlines make it out to be.

    1. No, it was not a reenactment. It was a contest where the teams were identified as the North and the South. The South team members were given Confederate flags to wave. That’s quite a different thing from a reenactment.

      to quote the Get Religion article

      Oklahoma Baptist College, which trains preachers, holds the North South School of the Prophets at the end of the school year.

      Students divide up sides and are judged on sermons they give. Photographs of the event posted on the collegeรขโ‚ฌโ„ขs website show one group of students holding American flags and the other group of students holding Confederate flags.

      So you’ve got a bunch of preacher boys giving sermons for a competition and waving Confederate flags. Unless you’re an unreconstructed member of the Old South, you’ll easily see where the issue is. If you are one of such then I guess it’s best to just move along and talk about something else.

      1. Not so much worried abou the North South stuff. Not all that uncommon, even today, the NCAA still plays the Blue/Gray Bowl of seniors from the North/South. Don’t hear too much crying over that.

        1. Darrell – Do you think it is wrong for the confederate flag to be displayed anywhere? What about organizations like the sisters of the confederacy, and other organizations that remember and memorialize those that fought for the south, what do you think of them?

          Do you think its wrong for southerners to be proud of their heritage?

        2. I’ll quote a historian friend of mine here:

          Southerners lost the trademark on the Confederate Battle Flag decades ago.

          When the hard-core racists adopted it, white Southerners should have been out there saying, “You can’t misuse that flag like that.”

          But they weren’t. And then in a reaction to political correctness, the trademark is supposed to be reclaimed?

          No way.

          If you are a white Southerner who wants a historical flag to display, I’d suggest the Bonnie Blue. It’s a great flag with a great heritage.

          But the trademark on the CSA Battle Flag has long, long, long since been lost.

        3. @Darrell

          Good point. It is amazing how smart people sound when they actually study history instead of having other people tell them what to think.

        4. @ Darrell,
          let me play devil’s advocate here (I am not defending the use of the Confederate Battle Flag)

          If a group hijacks one’s symbol according to your friend: Southerners lost the trademark on the Confederate Battle Flag decades ago.

          When the hard-core racists adopted it, white Southerners should have been out there saying, รขโ‚ฌล“You canรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt misuse that flag like that.รขโ‚ฌย

          Does that mean a hi-jacked symbol is forever lost and forever must take on the meaning of the group that hijacked it? Like say, the Rainbow? Two different groups have hijacked it, is it no longer a Christian Symbol?

          Again, I am not fighting for the Battle Flag I’m just asking a question.

        5. I would argue there’s no good connotation for the confederate flag. Even before it was a symbol of overt racism, it was a symbol for those dedicated to defending the antebellum South and institutional slavery. There’s no way to seperate slavery from the confederate flag. The South wasn’t seceding to defend states rights to set sales & income tax rates, they did so to establish & defend their essentially eternal right to protect the wealthy’s ability to own human beings as property.

        6. Hi Don,

          I do think a symbol can be lost – forever is another story. Meaning is conferred on symbols, they have no inherent meaning within themselves. The Christian faith “hijacked” the symbol of the cross from the Romans as one of fear and transformed it into a glorious one. The rainbow has had a new meaning given to it by the gay community. If the majority of people within a society confer or derive a certain meaning from a given symbol, that is the meaning it will generally have in that society. The cow was a symbol of the sky goddess Hathor to the Egyptians, while it was a symbol of enlightenment to the Buddhists. There are tons of examples like that. Just like words can change meaning over time or among various cultures, so can symbols. Forever? Who knows. Just my two cents.

        7. Darrell, who is this “historian friend” of yours?

          He is blatantly wrong.

          I say that and I don’t even fly the Stars and Bars.

      2. Yeah that quote is a nice thought but it doesn’t stand up to the least bit of scrutiny. Fundies have misappropriated dress clothes to show their spiritual superiority. Because they have claimed suits and ties as the de facto religious attire you are now unable to reclaim it for yourself. You can never wear a suit and tie, or short hair, or dress on women, and not be fundy. You should have protested but you lost.

        1. If you can’t see the qualitative difference between wearing a suit and the explicit symbolism of a flag then I’m afraid I don’t know what to tell you.

          Lots of people wear suits for many different reasons. A suit in and of itself sends very little explicit message. Lefties wear them. Righties wear them. Poor and rich people wear them. White and black people wear them. Jews, Muslims, Christians, and Hindus wear them.

          But a flag is a very specific thing with a very specific message. When was the last time you saw a black person wearing a t-shirt with a confederate flag on it? Anybody?

        2. People in the Middle East call the US the “Great Satan.” Some of this disdain is socio-economic, some political, some religious. There is a valid complaint that the United States, for various strategic interests, has supported less than savory leaders from time to time. We have often preached democracy while supporting monarchs and dictators. They burn American flags over there regularly. To some of them it is a symbol of hate and oppression. Putting an American flag in a church has no more place than a confederate battle flag if you want to reach out to ethnic immigrants.

          My point is that if you’re going to be offended then be consistent.. or else you’re just being bigoted.

        3. I’m with Darrell on this one. Where I live (Atlanta), the Confederate flag is strongly associated with white supremacy and racism.

        4. donb123, in the same way that missionaries learn about the area to which they’ll be going, local churches should learn about their neighborhoods. If you have a highly ethnic, immigrant neighborhood, you wouldn’t do something that would purposefully alienate them.

          If your neighborhood is traditional, third-generation American (or more), a large 4th of July BBQ on the grounds with a barbershop quartet might be an awesome thing to do.

          Know your community. It’s no more hypocritical to adapt to your exact community than it was for Paul to become all things to all men.

        5. Hope I get this quote thing right:

          I donรขโ‚ฌโ„ขt care for any nationalist flag being flown in church.

          Here here. I dream of the day the American flag is never again spotted in a church let alone on the stage. You can be as patriotic as you want, there’s no reason for the flag to exist in a church building.

        6. Suits ( that are worn on a daily basis all over the world) and Confederate battle flags are so incredibly different that there is simply no comparison.

          You might as well argue over the use of the swastika. It used to be a symbol of good luck and had many different meaning, such as healing, in indian cultures. But after WWII, that symbol is done being acceptable to patch on your clothes or slap on the back of your car without getting immediately branded as worse-than-crap. That swastika symbol (to us in the western world) equals pure evil, not what it used to mean.

          I can say that over time certain people who carry many of the same prejudices about other races, religious creeds etc. have started using the confederate battle flag in much of the same way. These people have NO clue about the history of the Confederacy or even much about the Civil War, yet the fly this flag? That’s a clear sign that it’s not being used for the right reason.

          Its sad that a group of idiots can take a symbol from history and make it an evil sign, but I would argue that perhaps the swastika is the bigger loss in this than the confederate battle flag, which has its origins as a battle flag used by states that supported slavery.

        1. Susan – I’m curious what state do you live in and what kind of activities are the Klan involved in.

          I thought there were only 15 of them left, and they were sitting around a campfire in Alabama.

        2. Greg, I don’t want to be too specific (I have to live here), but I live in Florida, and shortly after we moved here the Klan had a parade right down the main street of the nearest town.

          My grandfather, and my dad (an ifb preacher) were both members of the Klan, a fact I discovered only recently but which put a few puzzle pieces into place for me. If they were still alive, they would likely be ashamed of me and my liberal ways. ๐Ÿ˜›

          KKK is alive and kicking elsewhere as well. They just have to be more “discreet” now.

        3. Susan – Tks, I didn’t think that the actual “KKK” still actually did anything, having given way to the “skinheads” and other hate-mongers.

        4. KKK is alive and well in Indiana. I had no idea, either, until I learned they were doing marches and such.

        5. I live in Pennsylvania and it shocks me how much white supremacist activity there is here. You want to talk about “heritage”? What about Gettysburg?!

          It’s surprising to think that this was almost eight years ago now (I think)…but right before I went to college, the KKK had a parade through my college town in northwestern PA. (There were a lot of protesters, too, but still, the concept that something like that would happen – in 2003 – is bizarre to me).

          Oh, and that kind of thing was also alive and well when I was a little kid in rural Mississippi. But that just fits the stereotype, unfortunately.

        6. Silica – I know that the hate group “The Black Panthers” are very active in PA. Their latest most public outrage they were involved in was verbally assaulting white voters during the last presidential election at polling places, they were armed, and neither the Bush administration nor the Obama administration pursued charges against these violent haters. Unbelieveable

    2. In case you haven’t figured out by now, Darrell has a very distinct way of thinking. If you don’t agree with him, then you are labeled a “fundy” and are subject to ridicule from all of his readers. They are constantly accusing fundies of being narrow-minded, but fail to see that they are guilty of the same thing.

      1. Last time I checked, it was HIS blog. If you really disagree with him, maybe you could make a “Stuff Stuff Fundies Like” blog instead of harping on him in the comments.

        1. There, there. If I were a fundy I would question his spiritual condition, delete his comments, and banish him. But this comment section doesn’t just belong to me anymore it belongs to the entire community here so people are free to say what they want up to a point.

          If he wants to take shots then that’s cool. If I can dish it out I’d better be willing to take it.

        2. Darrell has already most certainly proven that he can’t take it though.

          Fundy is as fundy does, it just depends on the “Fund” you fund.

          I picked a good day to prowl here after awhile….it seems that not everybody here is oblivious to the obvious.

          SFL is nothing more or less than a bitter anti-IFB slander sight thinly veiled as satire.

          Maybe, I’ll visit back in a a few days in my spare time, just to see my point repeatedly proven again. (-and likely see another cowardly and juvenile post from some wanna be bully pretending to be “John’s Mom”)

          Or maybe Darrell will get a conscience and shut the whole thing down.

        3. And of course, John Keeter jumps in with the ubiquitous ad hominem.

          Nice one, John. All my best to you and yours.

      2. Jonathan, you’re objecting to being labeled a “fundy” but you just labeled “all of his readers.” You grouped every one of us in one large, sweeping generalization.

        Last I checked there were over 300 members on the forum and I have no idea how many readers, and if you go back and read the instances where people have labeled someone a fundy and been critical of what they posted, you would find nowhere near 300 people replying.

        Stereotyping the entire readership of a blog is definitely not the way to win friends and influence people or to get anyone to take your opinion seriously.

      3. Jonathan Pearson – Darrell doesn’t care if you disagree with him. But Darrell is keenly aware of the negative impact Christianity has on the world – both past, present and future. There are two types of Christians: Those who see Christianity as the aggressor, and those who see Christianity as the oppressed. Those who feel oppressed as Christians often feel that “America needs to get back to God” or that “Christians are or will be persecuted like the did in Rome 2000 yrs ago” And because of these fears, they hunker down and from a protective community – which usually ends up being oblivious to their faults.

        Darrell’s narrow mindedness is directed at fundies who want to defend their self destructive ways. In part because there’s not an argument that he hasn’t heard or used himself, and because the point of this blog is Independent Fundamentalism not really a choice, but forced spiritual and emotional abuse.

        Are you the exception Jonathan Pearson? If you are, you have no idea how happy (and i’m being sincere here) that makes me. Are you a proud that your fundamentalist wife can wear shorts, make up and work on her law degree while your daughter volunteers with the Young Democrats of America? I have never met the exception, maybe you are it.

      1. Well, they did keep that “chirtian” flag flying but at a pretty significant cost that could’ve better been spent elsewhere and at a lot of damage to the man who initially complained. Instead of love, he faced ridicule and stalking, even having pictures of his house and his name posted on FB. They may have saved a made up flag that has nothing to do with Biblical Christianity but completely failed at living up to any standard of the Christian life that was clearly laid out in Scripture. So, Bravo! ๐Ÿ™„

        1. alm517 – I appreciatte the time that these patriotic christians spent defending the placement of this “chirtian” flag, and take exception to you or anyone else that tries to tell christians how “best” to spend their time.

          How understandig and tolerant was the guy that was complaining.

          Maybe that flag means nothing to you, but it certainly did to those folks that wanted to keep it flying, and now you are gonna tell everyone in the U.S. how to live up to the standards of the bible, now that sounds very fundy to me.

      1. I’m pretty sure this wasn’t a discussion about the civil war but Abraham Lincoln was the first president to suspend habeas corpus, imprison citizens for war crimes, shut down the presses, and other dastardly crap that Dubya caught flack for. I’m awfully happy that the nation is no longer divided and that slavery was abolished in both the North and the South (Lincoln’s plan was for the South only) but all this doesn’t really paint a picture of what I’d call the “good guys.” Things are rarely that black and white… well only in the fundy world.

      2. I like this quote from “Night at the Museum.”

        ๐Ÿ˜† Civil war dudes… You guys are brothers, for God’s sake… You gotta stop fighting… North wins… Slavery is bad… Sorry… Don’t want to burst your bubble but South, you guys get Allman Brothers…
        …and… Nascar. So just chill!
        ๐Ÿ˜†

    1. At a Civil War reenactment, my young children wanted to know who were “the good guys.” I tried explaining that they were all Americans with different ideas about the power of the state and national government, although for most people it included the issue of whether slavery should be allowed or not. They said, “But who are the good guys?” So I told them, “The guys in blue.” I’m a New Englander, born and bred!

      Thankfully, though, in Christ there is no east or west or north and south!

    2. It’s not just fundies. Many folks love the history of the civil war, my cousin was and is a huge fan of the civil war, and to my knowledge hasn’t set foot in a church in 45 years, he is a civil war re-enactor and collector of all things civil war related, he had a bit part in “God’s and Generals”
      My old boss and my last chief of police (retired) was a tremendous fan of the civil war, has a library of civil war books, has visited, if not all, most of the sites of the major battles, has no ties to any church. I have many friends that metal detect for civil was stuff, our area (norhtern shenadoah valley) is loaded with that stuff, I had a relative that had 2 rooms of his house dedicated to displaying civil war memorbilia, he had found it all by metal detecting, he sold all of it, and has started right back collecting again. (doesn’t attend church either)

      This idea that folks are crazy or prejudiced because they are interested in the civil war is way, way off base.

      1. Did they wave Confederate battle flags in order to cheer on a preaching contest?

        There’s a huge difference between collecting memorabilia and using it in that way. Perhaps next year they can play “Cold War” and half the preacher boys can wave the old USSR Hammer and Sickle.

        I mean…if it’s all in fun then why not?

        1. Lol.. or putting an American flag or Christian flag in your church? What’s the diff? Just because it’s weird doesn’t make it bad.

        2. In other words, Darryl, you seem particularly offended that it’s a confederate flag. I have been to many evangelical churches that had Independence Day celebrations that really blur the line between religion and patriotism. I remember at one the music reaching a crescendo and a big flag unfurled and a dude jumped up with his hands raised. From my vantage point it looked like he was worshipping the flag. I’m not sure any flag belongs in church {unless you]re use Christian banners of some sort.)

          Perhaps you dislike the use of all flags as do I. What I’m reading could be construed as regionalism which is sadly the only politically correct stereotyping that’s allowed anymore. You know- you can’t make fun of black/asians/jews/gays/et.al. but did you hear the one about the Southerner/hillbilly/redneck/trailer trash/West Virginian…

        3. There are a lot of people on this blog who have expressed their dislike of flags in church (not wall banners). I’d never even thought of that until reading it on SFL. I’d always thought the Christian flag was rather contrived, but I’m very patriotic, and I love our country, and I had no issue at all having an American flag at church. It’s been interesting to me to read others’ opinions on this. I can see their point, but I’m still not fully convinced! ๐Ÿ™‚ (Although when we changed our church platform around recently, the flags got removed.)

        4. I don’t really care for any flags being displayed in the church. Any nation’s flag carries human baggage with them that doesn’t really represent Christ or His Church correctly.

          But the American Flag has no implicit racist overtones to it. The Confederate Flag does. You may thing that’s unfair, or historically inaccurate, but it is what it is. And you will turn off a large segment of the population when you begin waving it around. Just as you would if you waved the hammer and sickle or the swastika. (and no good calling Godwin’s law here, it’s a legitimate reference)

          You may look at that flag and see Old Southern glory. Millions of others look at it and see slavery, racism, and death due largely to its association with racist groups after the war. And as the wronged party it is their right to feel that way. So for that reason I say that using the Confederate Battle Flag in any context within the church is crazy.

          In my comment to greg above I noted that there are several other flags of the confederacy that have great historical roots without the symbolic baggage. If you absolutely must wave a flag, wave one of those. Leave the Battle flag in the history books, the collectors galleries, and museums where it belongs.

        5. Having problems so sorry if I’m repeating myself but my post didn’t seem to be going.

          Darryl,

          If you think the US flag doesn’t have any “implicit racist undertones” then you are wrong. I suspect that plenty of Native Americans and plenty of those in countries where we preach democracy and support monarchs would disagree with you. (The geo-political realities of why these things happen isn’t the point of my comment.) Now just because they think this way doesn’t make it so and therein lies my point. Just because you think one flag is free from stain and another isn’t doesn’t mean others don’t feel differently- even if it’s a minority opinion If you’re going to reach out to all ethnic communities then you need to dump them all.

        6. I’ll say again for the third time that I’d prefer no nationalist flags at all to be flown in churches.

          Not quite sure how else I can phrase it.

          But in general I’m not talking about the American flag being used in other countries (including sovereign Indian territories) I’m talking about its use in general American society.

          If I choose to fly the American flag over my house or place of business in America that’s not going to generally be perceived as a racist statement but rather a nationalist and patriotic one. If I choose to fly a rebel battle flag in my yard or over my business that’s going to be perceived as a very different sort of thing by a large part of the population.

          Again, if you can’t see the difference, I’m afraid I don’t know what else to say.

        7. donb123, it certainly depends on your context. If I were starting a church in an area with a large Native American population, I would definitely not fly the American flag in my church. If I were overseas, I wouldn’t. Even if I were in the USA, if I were in a city with a high immigrant population, I wouldn’t use the flag because all these groups – as you said – may have negative connotations of the flag, and the focus of the church is Jesus not America. For most Americans however, the American flag is a positive symbol; note how many people immediately displayed it after 9/11. Most of the general population in America love to see the flag.

          This is not true, however, about the Confederate flag. Whether in the north or the south, significant portions of the population feel strongly against it as an oppressive symbol. Christians should be willing to sacrifice all, even a beloved symbol, to be able to demonstrate love to their neighbors.

        8. The American flag does not represent racism against Indians. We’ve treated the poorly, but the American flag in regards to Native Americans would be representative of an Empirical desire to build US into a continental power (World Super Power didn’t seem possible at the time) and Indians were just obstacles to our Manifest Destiny. There is no American doctrine or practice of enslaving Indians. We treated the poorly, reneged on our treaties, stole, etc. You can put slavery somewhat on the American flag, but it rarely is associated with that by anyone. It is often still a symbol of Empirical domination of the rest of the world (which we are resented for), but the Confederate flag is 100% inseparable from the slavery the South was fighting to establish in perpetuity.

    3. It’s not just fundies. Many folks love the history of the civil war, my cousin was and is a huge fan of the civil war, and to my knowledge hasn’t set foot in a church in 45 years, he is a civil war re-enactor and collector of all things civil war related, he had a bit part in “God’s and Generals”
      My old boss and my last chief of police (retired) was a tremendous fan of the civil war, has a library of civil war books, has visited, if not all, most of the sites of the major battles, has no ties to any church. I have many friends that metal detect for civil was stuff, our area (norhtern shenadoah valley) is loaded with that stuff, I had a relative that had 2 rooms of his house dedicated to displaying civil war memorbilia, he had found it all by metal detecting, he sold all of it, and has started right back collecting again. (doesn’t attend church either)

      This idea that folks are crazy or prejudiced because they are interested in the civil war is way, way off base.

      Ease up alittle!

      1. My comments were to Mark, to just demonstrate many folks love the history of the civil war and love to collect books, memorbilia etc, and love to dicuss the battles and so forth, and are not affiliated with any church (necessarily)

        I’m not interested that much, but I certainly know that these guys aren’t trying to promote some sort of a political agenda with their hobby.

    1. I guess that comment doesn’t make sense to some. Fundies love “handing over the reigns” to their offspring or some other relation. Looks like Jim and Tom Vineyard are no exception.

      1. I know only too well. I was in a fundy church where the pastor let the assistant pastor go because his new son-in-law was a preacher boy, and he overrode the church board to hire him. Later he moved to another state, and son-in-law, daughter, and grandkids went with him. Another fundy preacher replied to my concerns about so many of his family members leading in various ministries with, “Who would not want his family around him, ministering with him?”

    1. Yes, Tom Vineyard is Jim Vineyard’s son (the one that didn’t blot his copybook). I presume his father recommended him; after all, better to tell the people who should be their pastor than allow such untaught, ignorant, unwashed masses to select their own pastor! ๐Ÿ˜‰

      ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

  2. Lancaster has become very political too. They got a deacon’s wife elected to the city counsel, the pastor is great friends with the mayor (even before his election), they have had a staff member and former deacon on the building commission, have had their college students hired to pass out political propaganda for the mayor’s election, and can spin the congregation into a political frenzy at the drop of a hat.

    Gaining political power is not the job of the church, at least not a God-centered church.

  3. Meh. I went to a church day camp and took hunter safety courses. They were essentially glorified skeet shooting with adult supervision, which didn’t stop one girl from putting the stock of her 12ga right up against her cheekbone and pulling the trigger. ๐Ÿ˜€

    Then I went to a church singles outing where the three LEOs in the group brought all their service weapons and we spent the next four hours learning to shoot Greenville County’s hardware.

    Must have been a slow news day or something. Either that or FUD is a way of life for that publication.

  4. I think that I have more of a problem with the fact that these people link their politics with their religion and feel that those who disagree with them are less spiritual.

    I think the reason that some people have a problem with the waving of the confederate flag is because of the symbolism and offense that it would be to some people. My guess is that this particular church is not very multicultural. Yes, they can keep having this particular contest, but if they want to reach to people that are different racially than them, they would probably choose not to.

    1. Kevin,
      I have a real problem with that also. I think you have to tread a very fine line. I think the converse is equally as bad- to believe that your religious views don’t inform your worldview. They should!

    2. Paul’s words challenge me when he writes of becoming all things to all men that he might win some. I have to be willing to forsake anything that might make men stumble at my message; Christ alone is the stumbling block. If they reject the Gospel, let it be truly the Gospel that they are turning against, not my American, traditional, conservative expression of it. Truly this is dying to self.

      Yes, Southerners can be proud of their heritage, but it cannot distract from our showing Christ to the world.

      I think the problem is that the IFB church has isolated itself so much from society that the church has to become EVERYTHING for some folks: thus, church members who love the South want to express that in church with like-minded believers. The problem is that that’s not what church is for! They need to join a group in the community (like Daughters of the Confederacy, etc.); that way they get to express their personal interests, but they’re also 1) keeping the church focused on Christ and 2) meeting unsaved folks and learning to befriend them and show them Christ.

  5. Wow, Darrell, struck a few nerves today, huh? The rationalization slinging is thick on this one. I agree that good Christians should also be good citizens, and gun classes, well, whatever, but there seems to be a lot of “la la la, let’s ignore the fact that some of these guys have strayed seriously off the reservation”.

    Just my opinion, but the day politics comes into the pulpit is the day that church, ANY church, black, white, large or small, should get taxed.

  6. Well Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammo! :mrgreen:

    Seriously, I don’t have a problem with the firearms training….the confederate flag…that’s another issue….

    BUT, even though I might despise the idea of a rebel flag in church, since I am believer in the first amendment and the right to free speech…to each his own I say. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ If they want to do that and act like crazy people…hey..that’s their problem…

      1. When the press says automatic weapons were used you need to be a little sceptical. They may have been talking about semi-autos, reporters don’t make the distinction very often.

        1. I am skeptical personally about the weapons being full auto, those were probably perfectly legal semiautomatic AR-15’s or something, but having that in the news reports most definitely doesn’t help.

  7. As long as he keeps the politicing out of the pulpit, I’m OK with it. I don’t agree with fundy religion but he is still a citizen and still has as much right to particpate in government as the rest of us.

      1. Yes, it would. But revoking his tax-exempt status for it would not. Tax-exemption is not a constitutional right.

        But legalities aside, this is a sad display of Christianity. Whether this ought to be tolerated as legal by society is a different questions from whether this is good for the Church. I would give you two different answers to those questions.

        1. I don’t have a problem with revoking their tax exempt status. I never believed churches should be tax exempt to begin with.

          As for it being a sad display of Christianity, personally I think fundyism as a whole is sad display of Christianity, period. And it has done more damage than good to the Church (as in the universal body of Christ…not the group of 20 IFB folks that meet in the corner storefront every Sunday).

      2. I think if it’s alright for liberal churches like Barack Obama’s then it should be alright for all. I personally don’t think it should be in the church at all. The Bible has plenty to teach us without us having to add politics.

  8. Not much of a story. My 2-cents? Abraham Lincoln was an EVIL EVIL warmonger who suspended habeas corpus and other Constitutional rights in a wrong-headed effort to save his precious “Union”. Yuck! Growing up in NY, all I ever heard was that North=good, South=rayciss and bad. Not true; as with most things the truth is more difficult to comprehend than childish platitudes and bromides. The term “Civil War” is also a misnomer, as there were NOT two groups vying for national control (unlike the Russian Civil War). This was a war for independence, a second American revolution. It was also the last moral war Americans have fought in. ๐Ÿ˜

    1. Slavery and racism aside, there is a case to be made that the Confederate States were just exercising their 10th amendment rights. The Constitution clearly states that any power not explicitly given the Congress is reserved exclusively to the States or “the people”. Some believe that it was Lincoln that actually started the shift towards a centralized, all-powerful federal government where the states are simply clerks of the federal system. The original intent of the founders was that was to be a republic of free states, and definitely not the mess what he have today.

      1. For some reason it seems popular to say the civil war war not about slavery but about succession. Although succession started the war the real problem began before Lincoln came it office. It fomented because the south wanted to expand slavery into Missouri and the north controlled congress and wouldn’t allow it. When Lincoln came into office the south lost any chance to win so they practiced Democracy and decided the quite the union. (Like Wisconsin) Lincoln then went on to save the Republic.

  9. The quote I have an issue with is:รขโ‚ฌล“You cannot be a good Christian if youรขโ‚ฌโ„ขre not a good citizen.”
    This is patently untrue. The state of my salvation, sanctification, justification is not affected by which system of governance I am under. I can, and should be a good example of Christ under democracy, constitutional monarchy, socialism, dictatorship, or anarchy.

    1. Yep…you must be a good little citizen…until the government does something you don’t like…then we’re “celestial citizens” and “this world is not our home”

  10. Wow, Darrell, you’ve struck a lot of nerves today.

    My 2 cents? We must be the only nation in the world that would allow a REBEL flag to fly and have it legally protected! Maybe we should have just let the Confederacy go and form their own country. I wonder how much better off the United States would be for that.

    John–Go stick your head back up your ass, that’s the most appropriate place for it. Or do you have someone up there already?

  11. FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY!

    A lot goes on when a girl goes to work.

    Okay, let me start by saying that Darrell’s name is spelled D-A-R-R-E-L-L, not Darryl or Daryl or Daril or Darreel or Daorol, etc.

    Second, I AM southern and I’m proud of being southern. My family goes back into the state of NC before it was a confederacy. They were colonists who became confederates who became Americans. I am proud of that.

    But, you will not see a confederate flag on my family’s land nor anywhere on my property.

    Why?

    Because, it represents a time when owning a slave was as accepted as owning cattle. It was raised to defend slavery and continues to be raised to defend white supremacy.

    And, with that in mind, cannot and will not fly one nor allow it to represent me as a southerner.

    1. Natalie – Isn’t it about time for you to be cruising? Anyway you got me to thinking with your post, as much as I love my country and love to wave ol glory, maybe I should re-think my position. Does this great flag also represent the legally murdered, millions of slaughtered, innocent babies? As bad as slavery is and was, it doesn’t come close to the savagery that is abortion

      1. I clicked that as well. I think it’s meant as some kind of commentary maybe? I don’t think there is any site actually. At least I didn’t find it on google if it is, but could be so new if it actually exists. I still think some kind of commentary, although the meaning is kind of lost on me.

        1. I would have liked to link it to a picture of John Calvin but I don’t have the time for making this fun. I just watch

  12. The NT teaching with respect to the Christian’s relationship to the state is diverse. Paul tells us to obey our rulers and calls them God ordained. John the Seer in Revelation calls the same empire (Rome) and its rulers satanic. John was certainly not patriotic. I do consider myself patriotic and I believe I have just cause to be, but the link between patriotism and the Kingdom of God is dubious at best.

  13. Whoa! I guess mixing the two taboo topics, Politics and Religeon, can prove volitile.
    The issues of the Civil War have never really been settled due to the token issue of slavery. NOT that slavery should not have been ended but the 10th amendment issues did get lost in the shuffle.

    1. They didn’t go to war over states rights to do anything abut allow slavery. How people can call that a states rights is beyond me. Most presidents have laws overturned on constitutional grounds. John Adams passed & enforced the Alien & Sedition Act (far worse than the suspension of Habeus Corpus), Bill Clinton passed and would’ve enforced the online decency act (not positive of the exact name), Bush passed the P.A.T.R.I.O.T. Act, Obama has approved the assassination of an American Citizen. Suspending Habeus Corpus was wrong, and was remediated. IDK how that is supposed to invalidate Lincoln, and the states have absolutely no right whatsoever to allow slavery.

        1. I’m fairly certain the ACLU has filed suit, that was just the first story I found when searching yahoo news. Was last year, they had him classified a terrorist without a trial, and have approved assassination of him, and as far as I know hasn’t been overturned yet (I hope it will be).

        2. Somehow I missed that story. Sad, sad, sad. And outrageous, of course. When we start murdering people as an official policy, all the other countries are likely to follow suit.

      1. That bait was so over the top it was ridiculous, or so delusional there’s nothing you can even start with that has some kind of tangential connection to reality. There just wasn’t any point in taking that serious stink bait.

      1. At the risk of sounding like a fundamentalist–I do hate unions.

        Why?

        Because when I worked at Kroger I had to join the union. No choice.

        What did the union ever do for me?

        Nothing, except steal a good chunk of my pay.

    1. Kansas was on the verge of becoming a state, and whether it would be a free or slave state, and if it was a free who would become a slave state (OK potentially, I suspect) was a lot of the precursor to the actual War. John Brown was involved a lot of the anti-slavery fighting in Kansas before attempting to overthrow the federal goverment by season the weapons respository at Harper’s Ferry, WV (was still VA at the time)

  14. The picture at the top of the post leads to me thinking at once, “get that flag out of the Pulpit.” It seems to be an American thing. At least, it’s not a British thing. The Church owes no allegiance at all to the state, and displaying the national flag in Church is a bona fide confusion of Church and State – shame on all Baptists who do it!

    The confusion of patriotism with Christianity is, in my opinion (and the thinking of Peter Hitchens, Christian brother of the atheist Christopher) one of the causes of the decline of Christianity in Europe. When the Churches acted as recruiting agencies for World War I, clergy calling young men to march off and die, comparing the death of the soldier in battle to the death of Christ, is it any wonder that people came to be disgusted?

    1. What adds to the confusion is the fact that our Founder’s were, for the most part, people of faith, that in fact, came and settled here to escape religious persecution and the forced attendence and submission to the church of England.

      And then right on up to the founding Father’s (whom I know weren’t all card carrying KJVonly baptists) but nonetheless, a very religios group, as evidenced by their reliance on God and admission of such, in nearly all of our historical founding documents.

      So to deny America’s religious heritage is simply foolish, but oh my, how far we have fallen from the great country we were and could have been.

        1. ๐Ÿ™‚

          It was religious persecution the founders (not the Puritans) were trying to escape, nothing to do with taxation or representation, it was all the religious persecution in the colonies by the English!

        2. Speak up Stony, exlplain to us why nearly all our founding documents reference God, if these guys weren’t religious?

        3. We can both quote mine all day to support our positions, but I’ll address your question directly: for the same blessed reason our modern candidates profess hard core Christianity — pandering.

          And in the spirit of this blog: “Shake off all the fears of servile prejudices, under which weak minds are servilely crouched. Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call on her tribunal for every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason than that of blindfolded fear.” Thomas Jefferson – letter to Peter Carr, Aug. 10, 1787

  15. RobM – I’m not following you. The Puritans came to, and settled in America because of being “forced” to worship, attend, and pay tithes to the church of England, are you denying that?

    I didn’t really know who David Barton was, so I googled him, looks like he’s doing some pretty good stuff, I spent less than a minute on it, but you seriously aren’t denying the Godly heritage of the U.S. are you?

    1. Thank you for affirming David Barton! I figured you’d think he had some validity.

      For the record he’s been thoroughly disproven, and when he accidentally says a historical fact it’s a small miracle.

      Am absolutely denying any of the founders were anything resembling Christian. Deists primarily, and the country was founded on enlightenment principles of the rights of man and self governance, not any kind of Christian principles.

  16. RobM – Tks for your honest reply. I’m not affirming David Barton though, I told you I looked at his site for less than 60 seconds, don’t let your prejudices rule you so easily. I would simply direct you to read not only the founding documents, but their actual hand-written letters, I have a number of resource materials here, but I’m home sick today, and definitely don’t have the energy to dig it all out, perhaps another day. Btw, yes there were some deists in the mix, but again, to deny America’s godly heritage is simply ludicrous!

  17. The Civil War was the worst thing that ever happened in the United States. I can see why people study it, but I don’t understand why people want to re-enact it, even in play.

    Some of my ancestors apparently fought on the Confederate side in the Civil War, although my knowledge of what they did in the war is hazy. I would never try to deny that part of my family history, but I would be crazy to be proud that they fought a war in a desperate attempt to keep slaves in bondage (slaves were around 30% of our state’s population at that time, by Census figures). In school, I was taught (as many Southerners were) that slavery was sort of a side issue in the Civil War, which was mostly about tariffs and State’s Rights. That sounded fine until I read some of the acts of secession passed by the different Confederate states. They all list preservation of the institution of black slavery as their main reason (or one of a few main reasons) for seceding. The state’s right that concerned them most was the right to enslave people and to preserve the means to stop slaves from running away. There’s really no way to make this respectable. The right to enslave human beings, or to own enslaved people, is simply a cause I am unwilling to defend, and I can’t respect anyone who does defend it.

    1. ๐Ÿ™‚

      It’s not within a state’s rights to allow slavery. No 10th ammendment issues were addressed in the Civil War other than settling that question forever.

      1. Apparently, the war also established that states cannot secede from the Union, at least not solely on their own say-so.
        Again, though, the reason some of them tried to secede in the 1860s was to prevent the liberation of their slaves. They had other grievances as well, but slavery was the one they went to war for.

        1. How about a bit of civil war trivia? Did any of you realize that there were in fact some black plantation owners, in the south, who also themselves “owned” slaves?

          On a personal note, a friend of mine had a book that listed names of civil war veterans from our area, I looked through the book and found only one man with my last name and he was a deserter.

          So much for that.

        2. I don’t recall saying anything about black or white. American slavery was a moral atrocity. I can’t vouch for the veracity or lack thereof to the idea of black plantation slave owners.

        3. I guess I did say elsewhere the confederate flag is a symbol of racism (which it is) and you mean that?

          The exception that proves the rule does not in anyway validate the confederate flag.

  18. RobM – Calm down Rob, and go to your peaceful place, my last comment was not in reference to anything you said, just some trivia.

    Btw, the southern poverty law center appears to “dislike” certain hate groups more than others.

  19. I would like to go on the record of having gone to Windsor Hills during my 8th grade year. Oh the stories I could tell…Bizarre does not adequately describe it, and this story does not surprise me. I will never forget the day I sat through the “How to be a lady class”

      1. Well, some of the highlights as I recall were tips like not painting toenails red. Not riding in a red convertible. Now that I think about it, they were kind of anti-red ๐Ÿ™‚

        1. Anti-red!? Forget that. Give me those bold reds and screaming hot pinks.

          Whoever said anything anti-red can bite me.

          Hm, come to think of it, some Orthodox Jewish groups also tell women not to wear red. I did not know this until *after* I showed up at a Kosherfest in a modest, but very red, dress.

  20. Jefferson’s belief in God is immortalized within the Jefferson Memorial in D.C. 3 of the 4 inscriptions chosen to represent his mind and outlook acknowledge Almighty God as a personal God, involved in the lives of His creation. These include quotations from the The Decalaration of Independence, the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom and his autobiography. They give God the glory for being the benefactor of all our gifts and freedoms as a nation, attest to God creating the mind free and man equal and assert that without His blessings and His hand upon our nation, we would be insecure, He said:

    Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed the conviction that these liberties are the gift of God? I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, and that His justice cannot sleep forever.

    This from a letter to Dr. Benjamin Rush, dated April 21, 1803.

    My views…..are the result of a life of inquiry and reflection, and very different from the anti-christian system imputed to me by those who know nothing of my opinions. To the corruptions of Christianity I am indeed opposed, but not the genuine precepts of Jesus himself. I am a Christian in the only sense in which he wished anyone to be, sincerely attached to his doctrines in preference to all others.

    Could this great man of faith be any clearer, please RobM and Stony don’t impute to this great man some sort of anti-christian system, you truly know nothing of his opinions, just as he says, but guess who does? I have stacks of these letters if anyone wants to continue, please don’t taint this great man’s legacy.

    Btw I’m ready for any and all comers related to the “Jefferson Bible Myth”

    Yes I am feeling much better today thank-you.

  21. I am of Southern heritage, and had ancestors on both sides of my family fight for the South in the Civil War. That said, I am absolutely disgusted by the ‘church’ that flies the Confederate Battle Flag just up the street from me. The last Confederate veteran died in 1959. His funeral was the last time the flag could have been said to represent Southern honor. As another poster said, if the people who wanted to celebrate the good aspects of Southern heritage wanted to preserve the Battle Flag as an emblem, they should have spoke up against the racists who appropriated it years ago.

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