387 thoughts on “A Welcoming Spirit”

        1. Yes, the common error–mistaking Old Time Religion for anything prior to 1950 America.
          Prior to 1950 America it turns into the Old Time Heresy. I have often made that mistake.

      1. Or like Robert M. Price would say, they use ventriloquism on the Bible. Like a puppet, they have it say what they want it to say.
        “God helps those who help themselves, right kids?”

      2. In my half-century as a churchgoer, I’ve seen one, and only one, type of ministry creepier than puppet ministries:

        Clown ministry.

        Just typing those two words makes me shudder.

        1. Clown ministry was a big fad some 30 years ago. I was forced to endure one session about ten years ago. Horrible.

  1. I see a lot of IFB churches with this sort of stuff on their web site.

    Churches like this won’t really grow much, because the only people who will read this and say “Yeah! Exactly what I was looking for!” are the ones who are already IFB to begin with.

    They’re trying to convert people who are already converted.

    1. BINGO! They are those “who are already IFB to begin with.”

      Also, those of the super-hyper-right wing political persuasion may be so inclined to join up.

      The positive side is that they clearly proclaim where they stand so there are no surprises should you darken the doors to their sacred brick and mortar.

    2. You’d be surprised. I met a young couple a few weeks ago who told after becoming disillusioned with the charismatic church that they were saved in a couple of years ago, they began to look for a new church. After a bit of research online, he determined that the type of church they were after is a “Independent Fundamental Baptist Church.” They had never been to one before, but based upon what they read, it was the type of church for them!

      Pretty big swing though, from Charismania to Fundamentalism… but on second thought, maybe not too different after all. It is just two different types of crazy (my apologies to those who identify with either).

        1. Litugard hats off to great social welfare systems like in Norway and Sweden. I have extended family there. I should also note that I do speak basic norwegian! (Tried to comment where it fit in but couldn’t reply to that one)

      1. Definitely some people want to follow strict rules. Some new believers are on fire for Jesus and are eager to “prove” their love by giving up things or by adding spiritual disciplines to their lives. Others feel overwhelmed spiritually and find it relaxing to follow a set of rules that someone else tells them is holier than anyone else’s rules. There is an appeal to being in an “in” group, an inner circle that REALLY knows the score. That is appealing to some people. And there are others who love to focus on externals because then they can ignore the uncomfortable issues of having their heart transformed.

  2. I know it’s because I was raised in a very different background, but I just have so much difficulty understanding the mindset of people who think “multiculturalism” is a bad thing. Especially for Christians, when the Bible is very clear that the early church was comprised of a variety of people from a variety of financial/cultural/social backgrounds.

    I just… learning about the world around you, borrowing from other cultures, showing love to everyone even if they’re unfamiliar to you, these are bad things now? On a fundamental level, I fail to understand this view.

    But I suppose if your entire system is built on hemming people in and keeping them in line, of course you wouldn’t want them to be exposed to new things… it might make them realize how much better life could be and how much more God loves them.

    1. It’s very much flirting if not blatant white supremacy. Our culture is better than the blacks & hispanics, and they do not deserve the Gospel. I would not want to have to explain those kinds of vile attitudes to my creator.

        1. I see what you did there. I try to avoid gender references when discussing the Almighty , but often forget and don’t mind any gendered pronouns if either gender.

    2. Well, as all good Christians know, Israel in the OT times was a representative of the United States of America, that is our Good and Holy Nation, the Yew-NI-ted States of America itself, can I get an amen? And because Israel was the forerunner of our True Nation the Yew-ni-ted, I say Yew-ni-ted States of America, we are to resist, resist I tell you in the name of Jesus, the infiltrating of these foreign peoples just as Gawd Himself told us to come out from among them and be ye separate! He has intended for us to be separate from the foun-DAY-shuns of the earth! We are to resist, to fight back, to deny all forms of multiculturalism in our churches, in our military, in our schools all across this great nation! Can I get another Ay-men!

        1. I forgot to put an eye roll at the end. Sorry! Rinse your mouth out with a little Welches grape juice.

    3. Multi-culturalism does not allow for conformity.
      It allows for unity which is awesome, but IFB does not want unity. It wants conformity.
      It’s a shame since the differences in cultures are absolutely beautiful. God made a variety of people! And each culture gets a slightly different perspective of Him. It’s awesome.
      Listening to a guy who’d lived in Egypt for several years talk about Jesus, I heard him emphasize different aspects from my friend from Central America. And she emphasizes different attributes than my friends in the US. Cutting ourselves off from other cultures cuts off some great perspectives, thoughts, and conversations that we can’t have alone simply because one group of people tend to think in one direction.

      It’s also the idea that apparently on the 7th day God created white, middle-class 1950s America. So you know, we need to make the world like that. Not like Jesus.

      1. I was a white, middle-class American who came to know Jesus through an ethnic church in the large city where I grew up. I owe a debt of gratitude to those dear folks, who loved me and cared for me as my family was falling apart, and sent me off to college well-equipped for adulthood. Camp pictures were fun as I was the only Anglo in the group.

        1. At a no-longer-IFB church that I used to attend they embraced multiculturalism. On Sunday mornings for the scripture reading they always include a reading from one of the native languages spoken in the church. It’s a blessing to hear it read in Spanish, French, Mandarin, and Russian. Reminds me that we are all just pilgrims and ultimately citizens of another kingdom.

    1. Any church “against socialism” would not dare to be tax exempt I’m sure. That seems like something that someone could check if they are taking advantage of social charity by being tax exempt.

        1. I think one can find a middle ground. One can be opposed to socialism/communism politically and yet still feel that an endless pursuit of happiness through material things is unhealthy and unprofitable.

  3. Against multiculturalism because we all know that Scriptures were written in the original 1789 English as God’s choosing the IFB culture as being superior that everyone else on the planet must join. There will be no translations, and all who wish to be saved must conform to this culture.

    1. As long as all those missionaries teach the people in the nation they go to to be good little American fundies. And not marry them.

    2. Their featured missionary was sent to the wilds of Canada to preach to the Godless. After all, multi-culturalism is officially sanctioned by the government here.

    1. Yeah, and they’re sending missionaries to Canada, according to their website. I guess they don’t know that parts of Canada are bilingual, by law.

      Gotta save those bilingual heathens.

        1. Canada as a whole (as in everything administered to by the Federal government) is bilingual. On the provincial level, only one province is officially bilingual. In Quebec, there are actual laws restricting the use of English.

        2. I think so. Quebec definitely by provincial law, but I doubt the western provinces.

          Some years ago my wife and I vacationed in Quebec. We didn’t have too much trouble figuring out the French signage in most cases.

          One evening we went to dinner at a beautiful inn on an island. We were handed menus in French. I knew that “bouef” means beef, so I pointed to a selection under that heading.

          My wife said “Wait!” and asked for the English menu. We found that I had ordered cow brains!

          Quickly I changed the order to something safer.

        3. Quebec claims to be unilingual. New Brunswick is bilingual. Provinces can pass laws enabling them to provide for French communities in places like Manitoba . Government services across Canada are offered in both languages. Territories offer services in aboringinal languages as well. Bring on the multiculturalism, it’s beautiful to me!

        4. My son and I were in Montreal a few years ago and had no trouble navigating the Metro system even though the signage was in French. We found most people to be polite and helpful, but a few acted very rude when spoken to in English, insisting they did not understand us, and being obviously unhelpful. There are a number of Québécois who will only speak French, even if they have learned English.

        1. How do you know him?

          I’ve heard him speak a few times, and was generally impressed.

          I was NOT impressed when he gave up a pastorate to become president of Tom Neal’s college.

          When Tom Neal drove the church into bankruptcy, I lost track of B. McSpadden. Looks like he is pastoring in Indianna these days.

        2. Guilt Ridden I went to TN’s bankrupt church lol He definitely lightened the uptight college feel, and was generally a lot of fun, him and his wife. Still not sure why he left, they kept things like that pretty hush-hush even though he apparently left on amiable terms.

  4. I always find it interesting what comes first in one’s statement of faith. Most fundies place their understanding of Scripture there. Then second or third on the list is usually God.
    This one actually put their political views above God which is interesting. And they place their doctrine of Creation above even God or their doctrine of Scripture.
    I do appreciate the fact they come with a warning label–of sorts. It has left off the harmful results their poor theology has on one’s soul.

    1. Thanks for once again confirming that this site has nothing at all to do with “silly fundamentalists” and that the true intent of the site is to slander scripture and historic Christianity. Evolution is only a theory, and a relatively newcomer to the plate as well. Pushing evolution seems to be one of the pet issues of this blog, which is fine. The reason this site is a joke and not taken with an ounce of credulity is because it is full of false advertising. It’s advertised as a “silly, funny, fun, blog to make fun of IFB’s.” When in actuality, it’s a place to make light of the fundamentals of the faith, which really don’t have anything at all to do with IFB or not. If this “Darrell” guy (if there really is such a person) would have the journalist integrity to quit calling this place a place to “spoof the funny and odd beliefs of IFB’s,” he’s actually get respect and some people would take the site seriously. Why not just be honest and say it’s a site to spoof Christianity and the historic fundamentals of the faith, with maybe a side dish of making fun of some oddities that are peculiar only to IFB’s?

      1. Can you list the original “fundamentals of the faith” as put forth in the book The Fundamentals for me please? Do you know what they are?

        And I really don’t see Creation/Evolution being a big deal around here. Calvinism is way more controversial. This is more than a blog – it’s a community of diverse people with many different beliefs. The thing that we all have in common is that we find humor, comfort, education, or release here. Don’t be scared – freedom of thought won’t hurt you.

        That being said, you’re welcome to your beliefs, but it’s rather rude of you to come to Darrel’s blog and insult him.

        1. Sadie H., I’m not being rude to Darrell. In fact, I’ve complimented him on occasion for allowing diversity at the website in that someone with a Christian and/or conservative point of view is allowed to comment. No, I’m not being rude, I’m just requesting some more journalistic integrity.

          From the self-described notes about the site: “This latter separation includes a large focus on certain types of music, styles of dress, the movie theater, alcohol, and a seemingly endless number of other activities. In reality it is these standards rather than any true doctrinal test that define the “fundamentals” for most Independent Baptist Fundamentalists.”

          One would tend to think that the site’s main role is to explore the interesting and sometimes odd beliefs of the IFB movement. But time and time again, the site devolves into nothing related to the IFB movement, but just a general spoofing and making fun of all things Christian and/or conservative. Again, no one is questing the right of the site to do this. But when the true ethos of a blog has changed from spoofing the odd things about the IFB to a site that is mainly constituted of ardent leftists and Socialists, atheists, etc, and a proponent of their accompanying beliefs, then it’s time to revamp the website and rewrite the blog’s mission and purpose. Maybe the owner’s mission and purpose have not changed, I have no idea. But the fact that the blog’s constituents are mainly radical leftists by default gives the blog its character and personality, regardless of any other stated purpose or belief of the owner.

        2. RE: “But the fact that the blog’s constituents are mainly radical leftists by default gives the blog its character and personality, regardless of any other stated purpose or belief of the owner.”

          There are actually a fair number of conservative commenters here and most likely a majority who identify as Christian.

        3. ‘Radical leftists’?

          HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA…

          *wiping my eyes*

          Stacy, apparently you don’t know any true radical leftists. They are nothing like the folks here. Most of the people posting here are Christians, perhaps more liberal than you are, but certainly not as far out as that. Your perspective says a lot more about you than it does about us.

        4. Wow. I think it’s very telling that (1) Stacey happily flaunts her ignorance of all things scientific, but also theological. She’s a perfect victim for the snake oil salesmen who have been fed her with all the poison she comes spouting off here.

          No answer to “what is it you think are the actual fundamentals” is absolutely an admission that she doesn’t know. Hint (and I fully expect Stacy will have no clue what this means): Machen was fully aware of day-age, and other hermeneutics on Genesis, and didn’t address.

        5. Let’s see, just for one example, evolution is a pet topic on this site, and anyone who dares believe in creation is often trivialized and mocked. Are you people really this ignorant that I have to spell it out for you?

          I didn’t mention the real* fundamentals of the faith because I sort of figured you would have picked up that, from the general context of the site.

          Do I really have to spell it out for you this much? Rejecting the Bible and thousands of years of Christian history and coming up with your own version of history and life that you like better is – hint! – hint! – a rejection of the fundamentals.

        6. Luitgard,

          The fact that a person can reject the Bible, and pick and choose which parts they want to believe or not , or are good or worthwhile and NOT be considered a leftist tells us more about your beliefs than anything, assuming this is what you were referring to.

        7. oh stacy! You still think creationism is a fundamental. It’s almost cute in it’s childish insistence.

      2. It is not slandering Scripture to put it in its rightful place–which is not on equal standing with God.
        I didn’t push evolution, simply said I find it odd that Creation is the most important doctrine to them–above the very person of God Almighty.
        Perhaps you are the one with the agenda….but that is already proven by the fact of your trolling.

        1. Leanne, my apologies if I read you wrong. You seemed to be mocking creationism. Perhaps I just read your statement wrong and misinterpreted your meaning. In any event, many of the posters in general do mock creationism and it is a common theme around here.

        2. Stacey,

          I used to be a creationist. I am one no longer. I have my reasons, and they are good ones. I do not mock those who believe creationism. However, I tell the truth about it — that is, that the people who created the doctrine did so on a pack of lies, and have attempted to make faith in that doctrine a prerequisite to faith in Christ.

          There is no doctrine prerequisite to faith in Christ. None. Nada. Zip.

          If little children have the kind of faith Christ’s Kingdom is made of, then there can be no prerequisites.

          Creationism — which I used to believe and fight for — lies about what science says. It lies about science’s motivations. It lies about the evidence. It lies about the processes. It lies about science’s conclusions. I have found prominent authors in creationism tear quotes out if context to make it seem that a scientist had admitted to something when he had not.

          As a mathematician and scientist, I have to tell you that the “proofs” they present are bogus. Their physics is gobbledygook, and the learned papers they write are for show. They do not have the facts. They twist the data.

          If I sound outraged, it is because I am. I lost years of my life to a blatant set of lies. It took me years to get things straightened out.

          I have the books. I have the pious-sounding nonsense. I almost lost my faith entirely when I discovered the massive deception.

          But as I have learned, it is what fundamentalists do. If something real does not fit their preconceived theology, they will blatantly lie about it. And somehow, they will convince themselves that their lie has to be truth as from the mouth of God.

          If God’s Truth has to be supported by a web of lies and deceits and manipulations, then It is effectively worthless. “No lie is of the truth.” Truth and lies do not mix.

      3. and that the true intent of the site is to slander scripture and historic Christianity

        As long as your history begins with Darby in 1830 or so, then you can claim “historical” Christianity.

        1. I have no idea why my comment is italicized. I did not use the html commands there.

          Likely a new ploy by George.

        2. Historic Christianity goes back–all the way to the Day of Pentecost.

          Liturgical churches see no need to write and re-write “statements of faith.” What we believe are written in the Apostles and Nicene Creeds, and every phrase is backed up by the Bible (KJV or otherwise).

          . These creeds been around a lot longer than any IFB “statement of faith,” and they’ll last a lot longer, too.

        3. @Jay, I got to say. You’re brilliant. Stacy is re-born without a word of protest. Damn. You’re. Good.

        4. We say the Apostles Creed every week, except for Communion Sundays, when we say the Eastern Orthodox version of the Nicene Creed.

        5. @Jay, I am still in an IFB church. It does have some problems, but for the most part is mostly harmless. (Even at that, I may not be able to stay a whole lot longer)
          In my College and Career Sunday School class, we just went through a series on what the church is according to Scripture. Week one in the study I began with this line from the Nicene Creed- “We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.” We referred to it almost every week.
          Part of why I stay is to try to open the kids in the class to “new” ideas that are part of true historical Christianity. I even reference the Historical Church teachings and remind them Christianity didn’t start with Darby, Finney, or Scofield.

          I wish I could teach some of the things from my small class to the regular adult class, but then my heresies would likely get me excommunicated from the IFB. Not that that would hurt my feelings any.

        6. @BJg

          I’m confused by the Jay/Stacy thing. It did seem like Jay outed himself as the Stacy Poe last week, but if you get called out on being the Poe isn’t it netiquette to own up to it? I haven’t seen Jay even ack that he was called out or confirm it was/is him, and “Stacy” showing up again as if still in play, is either a massive failure to come clean or we misread Jay outing himself.

        7. @RobM, I don’t know what the proper Netiquette would be for a Poe. I did think it was pretty clear about who was ghostwriting for Stacey. I could be wrong.

        8. @rtgmath,
          No, we are not Plymouth Brethren. Very few, if any people in our church would even know who the Brethren were/are. Because of a class members question from his Systematic Theology class at Semi-Fundy U, we are discussing Dispensationalism for a few weeks. (Not going into why he is there in this discussion. If you knew him and the training he already has for his life ambition, it would make sense.) I enjoy history, and wind up learning backgrounds to anything I study. Dispensationalists have a particular view of end-times which dates back to the late 1820s and early 30s with Darby, and later Scofield, who took Darby’s teachings and incorporated them into his notes.. The more I look into IFB roots, the more I see “doctrines” which never existed before the last couple of hundred years. Even though most IFB mogs would claim they are not dispensational, they have absorbed a lot of their teachings.

          The more I explore church history, not just Baptist history, the more I see Scripture in a way that makes sense in the whole of its writing, not just as a series of proof-texts that need round-a-bout explanations to be understood.

      4. Dear stacymcanderson:

        Regarding your antecedent post…

        Please explain how Leanne’s post validates your very broad generalization regarding the greater website.

        Please cite specific statements in which Leanne clearly slanders both Scripture and/or historic Christianity.

        Please validate the honesty of your assertions that this site intentionally spoofs Christianity and historic fundamentals. Why exactly is that claim to be believed? What exactly makes it true? With judgment day honesty, doesn’t the ninth commandment require greater care with truth on your part, stacymcanderson?

        Your 10:45 AM reply to Leanne classifies socialism as an anti-Biblical value. On SFL post, ‘E-mails from Fundies, Scott S. Edition’ [ http://tinyurl.com/lp6ce4x ], I list many ways that Scripture witnesses a social component. And these are not proof texts but concern Israel’s worship deliverance, Sabbath, covenant and more. You have said repeatedly that socialism is anti-Biblical. You are free to reply to my points at any time.

        Other questions remain, but for now, I will give you opportunity to respond to these points.

        Christian Socialist

        1. CS (not lewis),

          There’s no point in responding to your post because this blog entry is now a couple of days old or so and is therefore considered ancient history. You would not see the post, and neither would anyone else. Maybe we’ll meet up again on some blog entry that is current and up to date and not so out of fashion as to being a couple of days old.

      5. Hello Stacy.

        You came back! You couldn’t stay away!

        Yes, we make you mad. But you find yourself drawn irresistibly to us. The ideas stick in your brain. They resonate. You desperately want to refute them, but they have found root and are growing.

        It may take some time, but eventually you will be one of US. Welcome to the family.

        1. Of course stacy came back. She is very lonely and thinks SFL is a dating website. I am trying to think who we could set her up with…….

        2. BG, that’s a weird movie. I watched part of it because the description sounded good but I regretted it soon after.

    2. Leanne, by the way, I’m not purposefully singling you out. I’m sure you’re a nice person who is sincere, but sincerely misguided. You just fit it at the right place to make a comment. Pushing evolution seems to be one of the biggest goals and wishes of the constituents of this blog. Other important issues seem to be promoting Socialism and other anti-Biblical values. You certainly have your rights to promote such things, and no one is opposing those rights. The main thing that gives this site a “joke” status is that it’s a bait-and-switch site whose goals and agendas seem to be not even close to it’s purported purposes: making fun if the oddities of IFB’s. Again, historic fundamentals of the faith such as as believing in creation and not evolution, not supporting cruel governmental systems such as Socialism, don’t really have anything at all to do with IFB’s.

      1. No I take it as a compliment. If my comment warrants you taking the energy to point out how wrong I am, my comment rocks!
        I’ve been where you are. And I would be worried about my theology and soul if you didn’t consider me sincerely misguided. It is when one ruffles the feathers of the religious and pharisees that one is living on the edge of true faith.

      2. ” Again, historic fundamentals of the faith such as as believing in creation and not evolution, not supporting cruel governmental systems such as Socialism, don’t really have anything at all to do with IFB’s.”

        Stacy, you’re playing a broken 78 rpm record.

        1. Jay, are you trying to start an argument with your alter ego? I bow with respect for your mastery of P.O.E.try.

        1. Required viewing of the last two seasons of “Vikings” from the History Channel. They’ll be so busy trying to get the Vikings saved from their regenerate lifestyles that there won’t be any more time to bug the nice people on SFL.

      3. “…Other important issues seem to be promoting Socialism and other anti-Biblical values.”

        That’s interesting. My former fundy CEO was a true socialist, though in word preached against it in our government (ie, he hates Obama and all thing democrat).

        Socialist you say? Yes. He preached often that HIS flock needed to give more; more time, more money, more loyalty and devotion to HIS church, HIS leadership, HIS political opinions. As long as you gave sacrificially for the common good (the mortgage and his salary) you were good to go.

        So, please spare us with your self-righteous religiosity.

        All this in a word? HYPOCRICY

        B.R.O.

      4. This is the list of the original five fundamentals:

        Biblical inspiration and the inerrancy of scripture as a result of this
        Virgin birth of Jesus
        Belief that Christ’s death was the atonement for sin
        Bodily resurrection of Jesus
        Historical reality of the miracles of Jesus

        1. It’s too late at night for me to be reading. I read, “vaginal birth of the Lord Jesus Christ,” and wondered why that was even an issue.

        2. Because if Joseph had to perform a C-section, it would spoil the miracle of a 13-14 year old girl giving birth to God the Son. Not to mention that Joseph was only a carpenter and it would have taken a miracle to turn him into a surgeon.

  5. 1) Given such a laundry list of what they stand against, I would wager that 90+% of the sermons preached in this venue are filled with moral relativism.

    2) They claim that every individual will stand and give an account for his or herself but I can guarantee that they believe the only acceptable account will be what lines up with their standards. (practicing spiritual pragmatism)

    3) They practice bibliolatry. The final ( and only) Authority is Jesus Christ… not the Bible. The Bible is the revelation of God to mankind, it is not an AUTHORITY, I don’t care if it does say it’s authorized.

    1. On #3, I know of one IFB church sign that reads, “God’s Word – Our Sufficiency – Our Authority.”

      You are right on, Don, regarding the disregard of the true “authority,” Jesus Christ. I also find it interesting that the words of Jesus Christ Himself are ignored in the same breath.

      Didn’t Paul say somewhere that his sufficiency was Christ Jesus and that he counted all else as rubbish…his life as a Pharisee, his education, his keeping of the law?

      1. there IT is.. the LAW. They have made their own laws in addition to what the Bible says. They can keep neither.

        Whatever one makes a law they will soon find that they have transgressed it in some form or fashion. Then they stand condemned by it.

        In this SoF there is no Gospel.
        Their statement regarding the only way to heaven is through faith in Jesus Christ is reductionism to the point of worthlessness. The devils believe in Jesus Christ but it does them no good whatsoever.
        -Where is the Gospel? (they give the term Gospel a passing mention but fail to exhibit it)
        -Where is Christ exalted and lifted up?
        -Where is the Good News?

        All I see is a man-centered theology where man is in charge and God is a passive by-stander waiting on his creation to give him permission to save them. There is no Grace in this SoF, only LAW and man centered theology. They are the soul-winning agent not Christ.

        1. Yes.

          But not only is God a “passive bystander,” but God’s people are passive while the Mog rules from his pulpiteering throne.

      2. Sounds a bit like “gid said it, I believe it, that settles it”.
        Of course it may really be “(The Man-O-)gid said it, etc.”
        Makes sense to me. 🙄

  6. I always find the missionary list interesting. This church has a missionary to Bus Ministry and another missionary to worldwide. I’m not into the whole bus thing but if you are and you want to support someone who goes to tell other churches how to eat live goldfish and whatnot, then fine, it’s your money, knock yourself out. But this worldwide missionary is described as reaching the world through electronic media. What on earth could that possibly be other than a blog troll? Somebody break down for me what that guy’s day is like.

    1. Ooh I knew a guy in Australia who came here from America and was trying to do the whole online missionary thing.

      He was a real creep.

        1. What kind of music does the Dave Hyles Band play? I’m guessing:

          “Honky Tonk Woman” by the Rolling Stones

          “dirty woman” by Pink Floyd

          “You Shook Me All Night Long” by AC/DC

          “Closer” by Nine Inch Nails

          And that Beatles song that opens with “She was just seventeen”

  7. So very sad. I am grieved by how unscriptural and unchristian this statement is.

    To start a start of faith with everything one is against is jaw-dropping. To include being against multiculturalism when scripture talks of the redeemed “from every tongue and nation”, when it speaks of there being “neither Jew nor Greek” and that we are “all one in Christ”. To include being against socialism when the early Christians had “all things in common”. To not define any of these terms is simplistic.

    Literal creationism is listed before statements about God Himself – (as is the list of what they hate). Such heterodoxy.

    What about “whosoever will may come”? What about a God who died for the whole world, not just those who had all the right social and theological positions to start with?

    Though I guess there’s a sense in which this statement’s brutal honesty is a public service announcement and will save a seeker of God the trouble of having to attend in order to find out that God isn’t there…

    1. Their understanding of every tongue, tribe and nation coming to Christ in Revelation probably is interpreted by them as every tribe and tongue and nation conforming to this IFB’s standards and lifestyle. Its why many fundy missionaries go to other nations and make them change their style of dress and hair length and traditions. It is not about Christ coming and relating to that culture. It is about that culture being obliterated and them embracing the fundy culture.

    2. Dear Clara English:

      Scripture makes a profound argument for Christian ecumenicity when Paul declares that we are ambassadors who plead with all peoples to be reconciled to God.

      The world is a place of sinful brokenness. The church is charged to go into a broken world with God’s message of reconciliation. The problem is that as God’s people go into the world, the sinful divisions of the world penetrate back into the church, with the result that the church is broken along the same lines of division that characterize the world. In other words, the church is a mirror reflection of the world, which is why this statement opens with an affirmation of sinful, earthly divisions.

      How can a broken church serve as God’s agent of reconciliation in the world?

      Christian Socialist

  8. At first I thought it was a good disclaimer for their church, then they said something about being brave enough to try it.

    Makes it sound too much like a thrill ride.

    1. It is a thrill ride, but there’s no hills or dips, it just goes round and round and round in a circle, and you have to keep pretending you’re having the time of your life. The most important part is constantly waving and screaming with joy, making sure everybody sees, and always saying how wonder it is and that others need to get on it too, forget the evil merry-go-round or sinful tilt-a-whirl or the infernal ferris wheel, this is the only proper right in the park. Oh, and there’s no way to stop it, either, so you can’t get off without jumping and some physical bruising. 🙄
      Sort of like this:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=01j8HHt0CA8

  9. Did they really have to say Marlene Evans wrote that drivel about McSpadden BEFORE she died? Really?

    Wasn’t McSpadden involved in some kind of scandal which prompted his departure from Mecca, er, Hammond?

        1. Marlene Evans was different. She was allowed to speak because her favorite topics were loyalty to the pastor and the evils of pants (I forget the other three Sins of Christian Women, but I don’t think I’ll ever forget her voice).

  10. I’m glad they documented how looney they are right up front. It’s clear; it’s almost itemized, and for a Fundamentalist church, it’s fairly articulate in telling me what to expect (sexual scandals aside). Now I know that I ought to avoid them, and I will!

    1. I thought that same thing! If I were new to the area, looking for a church, the name “Liberty” would peak my interest.
      This disclaimer lets me know, in no uncertain terms, to keep looking. This is probably the only nice thing they do for “the world.”

    2. I’ve got to admire the chutzpah* of honestly saying, “You probably won’t like our church” right up front.
      I don’t think even the Church of Scientology does that.

      *multicultural term

      1. Makes deciding not to join or even go that much the easier. 😀 “Didn’t you tell me I wouldn’t like it? Just like I know I wouldn’t like getting my leg gnawed off by a bear either, so I’m not even going to try.”

        1. Yep. Put that down with the Cinnamon Challenge as one more thing I don’t need to try before assuming I wouldn’t like it.

  11. “we believe those who reject Christ….”

    This presupposes that everyone who has never heard of Jesus Christ will get a free pass into heaven because they were not given the opportunity to hear of him…
    it fails to recognize the natural state of mankind is hatred of God and the things of God. There is no good no not one. That we are all dead in trespass and sin. We are the enemy of all things Godward.

    This view presupposes a passive God who is unable to woo and work his will upon his creation. A God who is subject to his creation. NO! God is not a passive God waiting around on his creation to give him permission to save them! He is in active pursuit of those he is saving.

    I am reminded of Francis Thompson’s poem, “The Hound of Heaven.” http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/the-hound-of-heaven/

  12. So this is one of those hell-fire and brimstone-preaching IFBs that is more about stomping toes than it is about feeding souls.

    Basically, move along folks, nothing new to see here.

    That’s really the saddest part about this.

    1. The church Jerry Falwell pastored was called Thomas Road Baptist Church if I’m not mistaken. His school is named Liberty University.

      Jerry Falwell was a big target, both literally and figuratively, but he was a decent human being who actually did more than just pay lip service to meeting people’s physical needs.Although his school wasn’t Harvard (and he didn’t make that silly comparison) Jerry genuinely respected education, and the school is light years away from places like Hyles-Anderson “College.”

      From what others are saying, Pastor McSpadden sounds like Bill McSpadden of HA”C” fame. At least at one time, the guys from Hyles would have been more likely to preach against Jerry Falwell than praise him. Falwell’s school would also have been more likely ridiculed than pointed to as an example to be emulated.

      Like the rest of us, Jerry Falwell was nowhere near perfect, but he doesn’t deserve to be lumped in with guys like Hyles.

      1. Yes, this is Bill McSpadden, who was at HAC… when I knew him, he was pastoring in, I think, Iowa, and then he took a position president of Tom Neal’s college. After Tom Neal ran the church to bankruptcy, I think he tried to start a church nearby (?), or maybe was appointed to one, then he must have found this position. It says that he has been pastor since 2011.

      2. Jerry Falwell was a monster who turned against the victims of sexual abuse at Trinity Baptist Church in Jacksonville Florida just when they need him, and when his words could have altered the way Fundamentalism treats victims. He was not a decent man. He was a man who hobknobbed with Jack Hyles (and spoke at the 1978 HAC graduation) and knew all the dirt on everybody in Fundamentalism.

        1. Jerri,

          Since you are an advocate for the abused, I defer to your knowledge of Jerry Falwell’s behavior regarding the victims of Trinity Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida. I would be interested in learning more about his behavior. Not defending the abused and siding with their oppressors is a serious sin and you may have access to information which would change my opinion of the man.

          Falwell’s earlier association with Jack Hyles along with his speaking at HA”C” in 1978 don’t bother me nearly as much since they occurred before Jack Hyles was exposed. Hyles fooled a lot of people. If Jerry Falwell deliberately covered up, or simply remained silent about, the ongoing, unrepented sins of his colleagues for his own benefit, that would also be a black mark against his name. Once again, I would sincerely be interested in seeing evidence of this in spite of the fact that it might force me to reevaluate my opinion of Jerry Falwell.

        2. Jeri,

          By the way, apologies for misspelling your first name in the previous post.

          I had some involvement with one of Jerry Falwell’s ministries in the 90’s, but I didn’t really follow him later on.

        3. Falwell also defended segregationism in the ’50s and ’60s and shilled for South African apartheid to the bitter end of minority rule there.

          His Moral Majority was a highly partisan political lobby under the cover of religious tax exemption. All the communications of the Moral Majority organization were loaded with outrageous falsehoods. He was not a good man, and his impact on America was highly destructive.

          I’ve talked to several people who met him, and they all said he was quite agreeable in person. But still. His works were evil on top of evil.

        1. Ted Nugent’s “Bound and Gagged” is probably the main song played at this “church”.

          Is Jim Vineyard their pastor? This certainly sounds like a church run by Jimmy V.

  13. I’m surprised there’s nothing about fancy coffee drinks.

    “If you spend money on them frou-frou coffee drinks instead of giving it to our work, you’ll probably not like our church”.

        1. Maybe Nico could come up with a comedy routine for that along the the lines of Jeff Foxworthy’s, “You might be a redneck if…” monologues.

  14. Translation for normal people:
    We are an old-fashioned (but not older than the late 19th century, when things like e.g. The Rapture were invented)
    Bible believing (Bible being code word for the socio-cultural norms inherited in our small sect), Bible preaching (see previous), independent Baptist church (accountable, therefore, to no one). We believe and teach that the only way to get Heaven is by faith in Jesus Christ as your personal Savior (faith being defined as reciting the Proper magic ritual and the obeying our rules). We believe that those who reject Christ will suffer eternal punishment in Hell (which looks vaguely like a never-ending IFB church service). We are a soul-winning, bus-running church actively engaged in spreading the Gospel to every creature (Gospel being defined as conversion to our way of life). We are conservative in our standards and music (conserving practices that stretch back into far antiquity; like 1950 or thereabout).
    We are against communism, socialism, liberalism, and materialism (string of random scary sounding words, which the pastor will explain from the pulpit as being “not us”). We are against naturalism, moral relativism, multi-culturalism, pragmatism, utopianism, existentialism and post-modernism (Except when it comes to preaching, when our deconstruction of the text will cause Derrida to smile in his grave).

    We believe in a literal six day creation of the world and universe by the direct action of God and reject the theory of evolution as a philosophy spawned by the Devil (because a theory of biological mechanics is a philosophy. And the Devil. And those multicultural troglodytes that wrote the Bible couldn’t possibly have possessed the writing skills to write in anything more complex than a literalistic accounting of what happened utilizing modern rational-empirical paradigms).

    We believe God is real and that someday every person shall stand before God to give account of himself (And fwiw, we get to define God).

    We believe the Bible is the Word of God and it is the final authority for faith and practice in our lives (which is why we spend so much energy making it agree with our religion).

    We believe in the literal, bodily resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and that at any moment He may physically return to rapture His redeemed people (because the first 1850 years of Christianity were deceived. Everyone knows there will be a secret rapture followed by the seven year reign of a naturalistic, moral relativistic, multi-culturalistic, pragmatic, utopianistic, existentialistic and post-modernistic Antichrist) .

    We stand unapologetically for the old-time religion (It’s almost 150 years old!).

    If this is the type of church you are looking for, or if you are brave enough to try it, you are welcome to attend Liberty Baptist Church (because appealing to the flesh is our default MO).

  15. I wonder how many they keep as adult members from the Bus Ministry. I suspect few if any, which makes one wonder why they keep doing it.

    Any guesses which aren’t – “We’re IFB so we have a bus ministry durrr!”

    1. I helped in BM for about 3 years in a rural part of the country (city of about 8,000) . To us it was more of a way to instill Bible stories in children regardless of their lives during the week. For the parents it was a nice break from their kids. Sometimes, for the kids, it was a nice break from their parents. But yes, very few actually continued to attend after their younger years as is often the case.

  16. You will not like this church if you enjoy beer from a keg on a summer night, dancing, mixed bathing, or playing cards. You will not like this church if you watch MSNBC or that evil PBS. You will not like this church if you smoke or chew. You will not like this church if you stand for unions, public education, literacy, reading, libraries, or science.

  17. … But I’d bet there’s a long, drawn-out altar call at the end of every service. For whom, I don’t know, because apparently they don’t want you to darken their doors unless you are already their kind of ‘Christian’.

  18. I’m intrigued by “We are a soul-winning, bus-running church actively engaged in spreading the Gospel to every creature.”

    I sort of want to go along on Saturday soul-winning to see them presenting the Romans Road to squirrels, beetles, grackles, and raccoons. Do they use the Wordless Book and/or the Witness Stick (TM)?

        1. I highly recommend it having done it myself… but of course you know I’ve done it before – who else would be ministering to the whale sharks with waterproof KJV Bibles? But I keep well clear of those whale-whales; they are much too into those demonic beats.

          (In all seriousness, if you an get to, swimming with whale sharks is a fairly awesome experience – and in the original sense of that word. Quite humbling. I wish I could go again sometime. I went on it out of the Horn of Africa.)

  19. Since, like most liberals, you people are devoid of any ability to have a conversation unless the topic is “homophobia,” misogyny, “multiculturalism” or your “carbon footprint,” how ridiculous and hypocritical do you think it is to have Janet Yellin as the chair of the Fed? Don’t you think that having the crash of the dollar come under the only time a woman has been in charge of the Fed is a pretty cruel and a sick joke? Of course, none of us knows when the crash of the dollar will come, other than very likely under her term. To me, this was misogynistic to set up a woman to take the fall.

      1. Big Gary, you can’t help those who’ve already deeply drank the proverbial Koolaid. “Off topic” is merely a symptom of the larger problem…

        Ignorance.

        B.R.O.

    1. 1. I am a conservative.
      2. I’m very confused what this church’s website has to do with the crash of the dollar and with Janet Yelling.
      3. I’ve never yet had a conversation about homophobia, misogyny, or carbon footprints — except when I asked my kid not to walk across the floor after tromping through charcoal.
      4. I am multicultural.
      Can I be multicultural, mixed-race, and conservative? Is this allowed? Has my whole life been one big lie?

    2. Terrible, isn’t it, Stacy?

      You have to rant and rave! That is the only way you can stand against the camaraderie you find here! It is the only way the ideas of a real Gospel don’t hurt so much. The wide variety of ideas here disturb the monotonous rhythms you have been addicted to all your life.

      But somehow they connect. They draw you. You have to come back for more! Because as time passes you are becoming one … of … … us. Relax! It won’t hurt *too* much!

      Stacy McAnderson, resident of the Twilight Zone, participant in Stuff Fundies Like!

  20. I just went to their website and listened to his sermon on what the Bible says about wine. Evidently Jesus made Welches grape juice and if he made alcoholic wine then he sinned. Wow!…just wow!

    I also discovered I can have a curse from God if I as much as pass a drink to someone at a ball game. If I order one myself then I am not likely a Christian. Would love to attempt to have a discussion with this great self-proclaimed philosopher.

      1. Yes, because only Welches’ Grape Juice supports that holiest of crusaders, the John Birch Society, still vigilant to those dirty evil Commies even now. 😛

        1. Oh no, do they? Disappointing to hear that (although, to be honest, I actually loathe grape juice) given that they’re somewhat local to me.

      1. KOB, I was trying to engage you people in conversation. Since you view the entire world through “gay-colored glasses,” it’s impossible to talk to you people unless the topic is related to homophobia or your fear of how great a carbon footprint you are leaving. So no, I am not responding to the wrong website. I’m simply joining in in the only way you know how to talk.

        1. Ah. Gay colored glasses. They sell those? Are they next to the gay jeans?

          Seriously, if you’re looking for a place to blast pro-evolution arguments, Leanne’s post far above about how the church in this particular post chose to list its favorite things (in this case, creationism was higher than where some – even creationists, I’ll wager – would place it in relation to other facets of the Christian faith. You chose to burp out a knee jerk reaction about how we all loves us some evolutions or something. I am happy that you were able to vent about that; just saying that it was an odd place to do so, as Leanne didn’t discuss the merits/demerits of either origins argument. Anyway, get back to equating discussions on the Nicene Creed and Jerry Falwell to the Fed and gay glasses.

        2. So, Stacy, now you have the power to discern people’s sexual preferences, proclivities and practices. (See, I can alliterate!)

          We’re all very impressed with your new-found powers.

        3. I think Stacy McAnderson just needs to get laid. She’s clearly suffering from female hysteria and needs dilated.

        4. Liutgard, you’re absolutely right. I’m sorry for jumping on that bandwagon. It was inappropriate of me, too.

        5. Gary–

          Well. Yes, it’s crude and I probably owe an apology to the women folk like Luitgard. Not really sure how “gay colored glasses” is less offensive. But in case anyone’s wondering– I don’t subscribe to that theory, really. But I do think Stacy (the ficticious person) has some sort of pent up aggression or energy.

        6. “you people?”

          Stacy is a troll. I will now do what I should have done when this person, whether male or female, first posted….

          Ignore.

        7. @oneflewout We’d get along fine. I’m a liberal who drives a Dodge duallie diesel crew cab long bed truck. Excellent!

    1. Kind of Bored, LOL, I may have a few (or several) disagreements with the good (but misguided) folk here, but I at least try to be courteous. Are you sure you’re not being a bit hard on Charlie Taylor?

  21. Check out the Latin (I think) on the About-Staff page (looks like their web master missed one):

    Staff bio goes here. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua ut enim.

      1. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet. Per ipsum, et Latine scribere. Ubi est album piano. Volo tibus pulvinar. Cogito ergo sum​​. Quando omni flunkus moritati.

        Which means, Thanks to Google, I can write in Latin. Where is the white piano? I want my butt cushion. I think, therefore I am. If all else fails, play dead.

  22. I wonder how Liberty Baptist would even pull off a church plant in my area of California? The church I attend, and love, is full of all kinds of colors, biracial marriages and parents who have adopted children from overseas. We also have a very active Spanish congregation (no, we do not make them worship in English). We aren’t a perfect church, but we are growing, joyous, and making a difference for Jesus in our community. We represent many other similar churches in our area. One of the reasons I left Fundyland was the obvious racism in some sectors (not all). We’ll pay our dollars to convert the “heathean” overseas, but we certainly will not tolerate immigrants, blacks, Hispanics, Asians next door!

  23. Hello, i am a member of LBC, and it appalls me to see that so called “Christians” would mock people who have standards and are doing right for The Lord. If you “Christians” weren’t to busy trying live sinful lives under the guise of “grace”, you wouldn’t be on this site bashing good people of God, you wouldn’t be so miserable.
    Get right with God!! Repent!!

    1. Dude, why are you on this site again? I mean, what would your pastor say? I suspect that visiting SFL has GOT to be right up there with walking into a movie theatre or shopping in a grocery that sells alcohol. Seriously — isn’t it one of the top five worst sins EVA!

      You really need to repent!!!! And GET RIGHT WITH GAWD!

      Oh, and get off SFL before your testimony is damaged any further and you send folks straight to hell.

      1. Ma’am, I am here because I heard about how this place was making fun of LBC and had to set the record straight, Ma’am, by testimony is clear before God and my Pastor, I’m hear to tell you all, before all of your “hippy” ways and free love, and Jesus with a Budweiser in his hand ( should be called Bud-Dummer),
        You all need to get right with real Bible living, Bible Preaching, King James type if religion in your hearts!!!!

        1. “Ma’am, by testimony is clear before God and my Pastor, I’m hear to tell you all, before all of your “hippy” ways and free love, and Jesus with a Budweiser in his hand ( should be called Bud-Dummer),”

          Gramatically, this sentence is a mess. Moral: never mess with an English major!

          By the way, I’m curious how you found out about our ‘hippy’ ways and free love. We had the curtains closed!

        2. Jesus was never drink Bud! Guinness, yes. And many others. But not no stinkin’ Bud!

        3. Oh, there you go with your assumptions again.

          I’m married and have been for many years. There is no “free love” going on here, unless by free love you mean that my husband and I freely engage in coitus, in which case, ok, you got me.

          As for drinking, I don’t. And even if I did, I certainly wouldn’t be drinking beer.

          I’ll cop to the hippy thing, though, but should you really be discussing my body shape here? Seems a bit inappropriate. And rude.

        4. @Jay, he was probably peeking in the curtains.

          (Or maybe peaking would be more appropriate here. And that thought just gives me the willies.)

        5. Again, you are bashing blindly without any proof.

          Not sure what you mean by Bible living, Bible preaching, King James type of religion.

          Personally, I find religion offensive.

          I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and fellowship with Him through His Word.

          I do not follow the rules of men, as is (unfortunately) common in IFB churches – such churches, the pastor is treated as infallible; I hope that such is not true at your church.

          I do attend church where the pastor proclaims the Scriptures, and God regularly speaks t ome through the preaching of His Word. I hope you can say the same.

        6. “You all need to get right with real Bible living, Bible Preaching, King James type if religion in your hearts!!!!”

          Bible living – as in Bible-time living, which isn’t much possible now as the Roman Empire is well gone? Or did you mean Old Testament, which is even less likely? Or living like they did in the Bible – the multiple wives, the extremely common wars, the communal living, etc? Unclear term.

          Bible preaching – using the Bible as a springboard (hehe Bible thumpers) for whatever you want to talk about (if any Bible is even used), reading several verses out of context to make up a new Bible principle, reading several verses in context in an attempt to determine how God really wants us to live in today’s world, or reading an entire passage of Bible and simply explaining what it means. Again, unclear term.

          King James type of religion – uh, I doubt you’d much approve of King James’ religion or standards of behaviour. If you mean King James Bible, you should say so. And why would I ever want any religion in my heart featuring any name but Jesus?! Even your King James Bible makes quite a bit of this guy Jesus – you might want to check Him out!

        7. @Bald Jones Grad – I think you may have mistaken me for someone else? The reply function has us all replying to something so far up that it’s rather confusing. I say things wrongly and am misinterpreted regularly, but I can’t think of anything in my comment just above yours that is at all Poe-like. Though it is nice to have been missed 🙂

        8. @Janet, you’re right. I was confused and I retract the Poe. That happens more the older I get:)

    2. Glad to have you here, Steve. What is “mocked” here are weirdness of various IFB churches.

      Your church qualified because of the “You probably won’t like our church” — it’s now what one sees at most churches. (Most churches say “Welcome”, you know)

      I am not trying to live a sinful life; you are bashing ME. No one was being “bashed” in the original post; some of the comments have been made about your pastor’s reputation. How well do you know his background?

    3. I am so bitter right now I just can’t help back-sliding in to the sin of reading the stories at SFL. I haven’t read my Bible yesterday, today, or tomorrow. I spent my tithe on a weekend getaway. I’m afraid our “above and beyond” giving money, well, that just went to buying boxed wine. NOT grape juice. Let’s not talk about where the “above and beyond above and beyond” money went. So you’re absolutely right. I do need to get right with God. (Sarcasm font off. )

  24. I was listening to one of his sermons… rather sad:

    He was saying that he doesn’t go to fellowships because he is too busy doing the work of the Lord.

    The work of the Lord is people; I would counsel him to spend time with church members; the ministry is people.

    It is NOT primarily seeing how many people you can manipulate into saying a prayer.

      1. What kind if a CHristian calls himself a socialist? Is that a sick joke?
        Seriously, what kind of person would do such a thing? Socialist kills Christian in communist countries!! You find that funny?

        1. 1. There’s a difference between socialism and communism.
          2. I’m a Christian anarchist. One can call oneself anything that one wants to call oneself. After all, I’m sure you call yourself a Christian.
          3. I find it funny that fundies are spending their time ranting and raving and stomping their feet in someone else’s virtual living room. No, actually, I don’t find that funny at all. I find it annoying.

          Many of us here were born and raised into fundydom. Then we grew up and got the hell out of it. There’s absolutely nothing you can say to change anyone’s mind, so instead of spitting your “pearls” of idiocy at us while calling us swine, how about you move on to someone that WILL appreciate your bloviating? May I suggest the bathroom mirror?

        2. a) Are you familiar with the social structures of the Early Church? They were living in common. Essentially communes. A community. There are linguistic ties there…

          b) Socialism and communism are not the same thing. Socialists don’t kill people in Communist countries.

          Modern Socialism works. Look at Scandanavia. Their people are educated, well-housed, they have enough to eat, they have excellent health care. And when the studies come out evaluating overall happiness, they consistently come out on top- in part because the based social supports for living give them the freedom to pursue other things that enrich their lives.

          And no. Because I don’t speak Danish or Norwegian. 🙂

  25. Dear Mr. McSpadden:

    Isn’t Capitalism a man-made system as much as communism, socialism, liberalism, materialism — and conservativism for that matter?

    If you reject everything about the material world, doesn’t that incline you toward Gnosticism? And doesn’t that compromise youir belief in Jesus’ incarnation?

    Haven’t you overlaid an host of other issues on the theology of the cross? this isn’t ‘off message,’ what does ‘off message’ look like?

    Could I be a member in good standing of your church as a committed socialist? If so, how do you justify your vilification of socialism? If not, how do you contend that the gospel is for all?

    How much of what you do is actually indicative of Biblical religion? Why should we believe that?

    Christian Socialist

        1. Because I am such a genteel lady, I refrained from correcting someone’s verb choice on this thread. I did really want to point out that when using an auxiliary verb one must use the participial form of the main verb, but then I thought it wouldn’t be proper to do that. You know, the whole usurpation of authority over a man issue.

    1. It’s always interesting the isms that get left off the list of things to oppose. Capitalism, Militarism, frankly Creationism, Nationalism, Conservatism, Romanticism (of the idealized 50s), Racism, etc seem to always get a pass….

  26. Again, no one is questing the right of the site to do this. But when the true ethos of a blog has changed from spoofing the odd things about the IFB to a site that is mainly constituted of ardent leftists and Socialists, atheists, etc, and a proponent of their accompanying beliefs, then it’s time to revamp the website and rewrite the blog’s mission and purpose. Maybe the owner’s mission and purpose have not changed, I have no idea. But the fact that the blog’s constituents are mainly radical leftists by default gives the blog its character and personality, regardless of any other stated purpose or belief of the owner.

    So, this is a response from a person who happens to be a registered Republican, and believes in free speech–why are you here?! If you disagree with the purpose of the site, then you don’t need to be here. There are many other forums where you can state your opinions. If you were even slightly on topic, it would be helpful. But the way you spit out labels, it quite obvious that you have no idea, or respect, for the scope of ideas and opinions voiced on this blog. The fact that your inane comments are not edited off the site by Darrell give me much more respect for him than for you.

  27. I was raised in a church that identified itself as Evangelical Friends/Quaker. Um, yes…we even had segregated seating on certain Wednesday night services. That kind of Quaker. The God I learned was the OT God of judgement and damnation – that salvation was temporary depending upon whether or not any sin was present. So…there were lots of altar calls, lots of times I went forward to “get saved” when the question was asked: “if you died tonight, where would you end up?” Revivals were huge for us. As were evening VBS programs – anything to snatch sinners (all of us) from the hands of an angry God…because we were ALL sinners and any of us could/might go to hell for some slight, forgotten sin at any moment.

    I lived in moral fear.

    Then, when I turned 13, my parents switched churches. Yep, Baptist. Independent Baptist. Small, country church…huge doctrinal changes. Calvinism, once-saved always-saved philosophy. Talk about a mind-shift. I was left hanging in right field. It took forever for me to figure out who was right, what verses they used…why those were “right” and why the Quakers were “wrong.”

    Then, we began homeschooling. We were pioneers. In the mid 80’s homeschooling in Ohio was illegal. It was also deeply religious. This was the era of quiver-full and patriarchy and HSLDA, ACE, Bob Jones, A-Beka…all before people had names for them.

    I graduated and then went to a Baptist university: Cedarville. No complaints. Still in the same wheelhouse. Graduated there and, of course – continued to seek out churches with which I was familiar: Community, Non-denominational, Baptist.

    This past 18mos I have found myself on a journey. My husband revealed to be a sex addict with compulsive sexual behavior of 30 yrs, leading a double life, abusive & manipulative to me and my 5yr old son (who has kidney cancer) throughout our 8yr marriage (sexually, psychologically, financially, emotionally, socially). In seeking help from my church, I was further manipulated…so I left, seeking respite from another denomination trained in abuse.

    To say I have experienced spiritual & domestic abuse throughout my life is to put it mildly. To assign blame…well, that isn’t why I’m here. I am trying to educate myself and learn.

    What I want to know and understand from you is this: How are you defining fundamentalism? I have read the items on your website and still I am left uncertain as to how this has impacted my past. The leaders you list are not those who shaped my life…yet perhaps there are many you would consider part of the fold; identifying them as “fundamentalist” would be my job. Are all fundamentalists “evil?” Are there denominations exempt from “fundamentalism” – for instance, the church I am attending now is Lutheran (Missouri Synod)? Or is the idea more of a case by case study dependent upon the church and it’s leader/pastor rather than actual denomination? Or are you thrusting the responsibility back in the lap of the individual…for instance, I can attend what might very well be a “fundamentalist” church yet choose not to live or practice “fundamentalism?”

    Thank you for entertaining my questions. I am rather deep in the fog at the moment. It is an uncomfortable place to be; freedom is worth seeking.

    1. Hi Charis,

      Firstly I want to say that I’m sorry for the family trauma that you’re dealing with. I have great respect for you for leaving and protecting your child first. It is sad how many women don’t do that. I have had a similar journey and it has been very hard (although, three years later, things are much better now.)

      As far as how we define fundamentalism: Well, this site focuses on the fundies who form the Independent Baptist Church. There are many flavours of fundies within this group, so sometimes we’ll be reading about BJU-affiliated fundies, sometimes HAC, sometimes WCBC, sometimes Bill Gothard. That said, people who have had experiences with christian fundamentalism outside of the IFB sometimes drop by and are very welcome, because some of their experiences are very similar.

      As to what makes a fundamentalist church? Well, there are a myriad of people here and they’d probably all define it in a different way. One point that keeps coming up is the fact that fundamentalists focus on extra-biblical standards, and will actually ignore biblical commands in order to do them. So you will find that fundamentalist churches are very controlling and teach people how to dress and behave in situations that the bible never mentions (my old pastor taught that cremation was sinful and a good christian is buried after death, for example) but have little focus on the commands that Jesus claimed was important, for example, love the Lord your God, and love your neighbour.

      There are many other issues that are common in fundamentalist churches but that aren’t necessarily in all fundy churches. For example, many IFB churches are KJV only, but I believe that BJU is not. The pastor is put on a pedestal and cannot be held accountable, even when his actions are criminal. Women are treated as being worth less than men. There’s a very long list of issues that can come up.

      Anyway, feel free to drop by the forum and introduce yourself in the ‘meet and greet’ forum. It’d be good to have you around.

    2. Wow, Charis! It is good to meet you!

      Fundamentalism has a lot of forms and degrees. It basically insists on a literal interpretation of Scripture, but always has those caveats that allow it to make Scripture mean what it wants it to say. It is the hallmark philosophy of a socioeconomic group that abhors any change that costs them their power to dominate others or makes them think that their theology might be in error. So fundamentalism abhors science, since discoveries about how the natural world work and its principles take away from the idea of miracles, and there is less room for God to be arbitrary and unknowable. They have their favorite “out-groups” as the poor and lower-class (which many are in, but are determined to not admit it!), liberals, immigrants, and so on.

      They practice a kind of group-think. They tend to blame marriage troubles on the wife as long as the husband maintains a good Pharisaical relationship with the church. Problems you have may be attributed to God punishing you for some sin you have that is causing you to unknowingly rebel against God. No problem is ever their fault.

      Fundamentalism is not so much a denominational issue as it is a socio-economic one. Still, groups like Baptists are prey to it. It grows there because the conditions are great for it. Other churches that have to answer to a hierarchy above themselves are somewhat less susceptible, but are not proof against it.

      The names change. In this blog we are mostly familiar with the Independent Fundamentalist Baptist strain of the disease. It does have different strains. The names change, but the messages are remarkably similar. There is a claim to *THE TRUTH*, those who do not follow this interpretation and way of thought are said to be under the power of the devil, haters of God and righteousness, etc. God is punitive, much more interested in punishing you than in indulgently remembering that you are not and cannot be perfect. Wrath is considered a more potent means of persuasion than love.

      If you look at the messages in Fundamentalist Islam and compare them to Fundamentalist Christianity, you will find they are awkwardly similar. God is everything, man is nothing. Man’s only duty is to obey God, in the manner of interpretation of this or that cleric or preacher. Your money, time, energy, and life are devoted to being against other people and giving good things to those who are unworthy. And those who want to disturb your way of life or cause you to think differently are evil.

      And it takes time to come out from it. Many of us never get out from under it completely. It takes a lot of grace to move very far from what you have always known.

      Your story resonates with me. Different, but the same.

      Lurk here a while. Participate when you are comfortable. You are among friends, and the occasional snarky ones who like to cause mischief. We are diverse in ideas, somehow each able to state how we feel and believe without causing too much of a ruckus.

      You are welcome here.

    3. Charis,

      -A short answer to your question, most “fundamentalist” churches describe themselves as such, although the manipulation tactics and abuse run rampant through all sorts of churches/denominations. It sounds as though you’ve had your share of it, from a few places.

      Thank you for sharing your story. I am so, so sorry for all that has happened to you. Prayers for you and your son, may God heal you both.

      Come inside the forum, where many will engage you in conversation, answer your questions, and relate to you in your troubles.

    4. Dear Charis:

      Here is some of my perspective on this discussion.

      In my experience, Christian fundamentalists has a strong Gnostic bent. This ancient heresy sharply distinguishes the physical and spiritual. In some forms, this led to ascetic practices and denial of the body such as Paul addressed in writing the Colossians. In other forms, it led to reveling in corruption such as Paul addresses in writing the Corinthians. Generally, Gnostics regarded the physical world as inherently evil.

      Christian fundamentalists also tend toward the Manichean heresy. In this variant of Gnosticism, evil is objectified with the result that everything tends to become ‘black or white.’ US political discourse in highly Manichean in nature. ‘You’re with us or with our enemies’ well captures this idea.

      Christian fundamentalism has a weak doctrine of creation. Because Christian fundamentalism is tainted by Gnosticism and depreciates tends to hold the physical world as suspect at best, this probably shouldn’t be surprising.

      Christian fundamentalism therefore sees a world which is largely abandoned by God and is outside God’s plan of redemption. The world is subsequently a place of fear and danger.

      Outside fundamentalist institutions, few arrangements exist to administer grace. It’s pretty much, ‘our way, or you’re on your own.’ This gives fundamentalism’s practitioners exorbidant influence over many of those in its orbit.

      Christian fundamentalism fears God’s grace. Grace is powerful and sets before us the God of love. Whereas Christian fundamentalism tends to give lipservice to love and grace, God’s grace actually liberates. It brings assurance of life in the world, affirms that the world itself shall be redeemed, allows us to live in love as opposed to fear, and opens us up to a relationship with God.

      Christian fundamentalism can ‘save’ you from the world [when world is defined on its terms], but God’s grace can save you from Christian fundamentalism, a movement largely untouched by the gospel and which needs conversion to Jesus Christ.

      Lastly, welcome to the forum, Charis! Blessings!

      Christian Socialist

    5. Many thanks to all 3 of you for responding. You have each given me much to consider. I also read a few other websites, including Julie Ann’s blog at the Spiritual Sounding Board – and that has greatly helped where Family of Origin & spiritual abuse is concerned (http://spiritualsoundingboard.com/).

      I believe I originally found this site from either the Spiritual Abuse Survivor Network blog (http://www.patheos.com/blogs/nolongerquivering/spiritual-abuse-survivor-blogs-network/) or the Scarlet Letters blog (http://scarletlettersblog.wordpress.com/)…which were referred to me from A Cry for Justice website – an excellent resource on all things abuse (http://cryingoutforjustice.com/). I have been lurking at ACFJ for quite some time, educating myself and feeling not so alone as I read through the comments thinking these people must have been watching my live on closed circuit TV; their experiences are just that familiar to my own.

      Thank you, again, for responding – and thank you for your kind words of encouragement. I know I have much to learn as the fog clears…extending patience and becoming a gentle observer of self is something I am learning to practice.

      Much grace to you.

  28. I pray that at this site, everybody would come to the saving knowledge of Jesus! That would repent and return to their first love!, if they ever were saved to begin with and find a good King James Bible preaching church that preaches that “soul stirring” sermons!!!!

    1. I pray that you meet Stacy McAnderson at an “afterglow” and , after an appropriately awkward courtship, marry her and replenish the earth with 6-8 homeschooled children that you raise on welfare because you can’t get a job with your church basement Bible college degree. Can I get an amen?

      1. HAY-men and then some! and may all those little arrows sing barely well enough for you to going touring every Fundy church in the Tri-State. 😛

    2. I am saved, thank you. I love God. Too much to idolise a book translated in 1611. Too much to disobey God by attending a church that’s goal is to offend the little ones that Jesus dearly wants to draw near. One day you will have to stand before God and give an account for supporting this church’s website – for slamming the door shut on those God loves.

      Of course, you’re just a Poe. I get that.

        1. It’s always meant a lot to me, too. 🙂

          I think if more Christians focused on that verse instead of all the “fluff,” our world would be a much better place.

        2. Somehow, I suspect that Mr Tate will not list this – churches like his often say that “soul-winning” is THE first love.

          So I wanted to see what he said.

  29. Did anyone look at the school attached to the church? I teach at a private Christian school as an OUTREACH ministry. In other words, we have kids that no LBC school would ever take. And they are happy and loved.

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