Church Sign: Santa is Satan


The Christian Post reports that this is an actual church sign put up by people who must be a heck of a good time at office Christmas parties.

Some have pointed out that this sign presents a theological issue if taken to its logical conclusions. After all, if Santa is Satan and Santa is imaginary then Satan is…you get the idea.

570 thoughts on “Church Sign: Santa is Satan”

  1. I keep just missing the “first”. Darrell, I’m starting to think there’s something to your “get right with God” theory… Doc Proc, what’s your secret?

  2. How many different words can you come up with using the letters

    how about

    That’s almost as bad as the one at a local bunker that read:
    “Let God be your hitch in life”

    yeah… I don’t know what they were trying to say with that one either, I’m not as fluent in redneck as I once was.

    1. noooo, we’re not judgmental, anti-social, angry, mean-spirited religious elitists at all, why we welcome all who believe as we do. And even if you don’t we will mold you to our group think in no time.

  3. I often wonder how immature folks like this must be considering all the negative attention they draw to themselves with stunts like these. It’s probably more “suffering for the LAWD!”

  4. The last comment in the article seems to explain it: “…While sin is running rampant, the church sits quietly by and hopes to go unnoticed.”

    So, they put the sign up to be noticed. How does it go? Even negative attention is better than nothing at all? Except that doesn’t work for Christ and his church.

    1. They could be intimidated by Santa’s progress in the works righteousness sector. When you can’t beat the competition, badmouth them. Santa is like the wicked missionaries who hand out money instead of preaching on the streets, hay-men?? It’s better to get people saved off of the naughty list and institutionalized than to give them any small help in the real world.

    2. .. Or it means “Hey, you elves!! Get back in OUR workshop or you won’t hit your quota for the month! Some little kid in Timbuktu will be in hell tonight because you were making toys for Santa instead of tithing and driving a bus!”

  5. It’s true. Satan Claus wants to crawl down your chimney and eat your cookies and milk. He also watches you while you’re sleeping. Actually gives you gifts when you’re bad. He has your name on a list. He’s checking it twice. And next week…

    He’s coming to town.

    1. Nah, he’s clearly a capitalist overlord. He works one day a year, getting fat off the milk and cookies he gets as kickbacks, while he presides over a sweatshop full of elf laborers.

      1. Just ignore the fundy overlord who works one day a week copying sermons. He only gets kickbacks like free internet, cell phones, and housing while presiding over his sweatshop of free labor.

      1. Politburo member Rudolph Ivanov sat in his living room. His, wife, Yelena Ivanova, came into the room and said, “Have you mowed the lawn yet?”
        “I can’t,” said Rudolph. “It’s raining hard out there.”
        Yelena went to the window and looked. “No, it’s sunny outside.”
        “Rudolph the Red knows rain, dear,” came the angry retort.

        1. Rudolph has a red nose, but all the others have brown noses because of Rudolph’s habit of stopping without warning

        1. I’m visiting my Grandmother’s cat, Milo, this Christmas. He is an Ocicat, and he is really mine. Or I am his. Something like that. We are two kindred bandits separated by a fur coat and two essential amino acids.

        1. I actually think that our cats may be more intelligent than the person who designed the church sign!

  6. This is priceless! There really isn’t a whole lot you can say about this level of utter insanity. I’m guessing this warm welcome isn’t doing much to fill the pews.

  7. True story: I once taught at an IFB school. Didn’t realize how hard core they were before the hire and I was young and desperate for a job anyways.

    Around Christmas, I wore a Santa tie which played “Jingle Bells”. Kids loved it, but about an hour into the day, the principal/assistant pastor pulled me aside and explained unto me a more perfect way. Good news though, I actually got to teach the rest of the day without a tie.

    1. my pastor wears a santa ona motorcycle tie cuz he’s a biker. I hate it, but he likes it. Each to their own. oh, and, yes, he’s a “fundy” preacher. Go figure.

        1. I don’t know. You tell me. Is that what you think? Sounds strange. You’re a Christian if you accept Christ as your Savior. All else are side issues.

        2. Brian sez “you are a Christian if you accept Christ as your savior. All else are side issues.”
          Im not a “Fundy” but I grew up in the Evangelical Protestant subculture of Northern Ireland. The similarities are startling. That is why so much on this site resonates with me. My exeprience is that Christians are constantly judging and being judged, and that “side-issues” are often ot side-issues at all. If you don’t tick the right boxes, – “Standards” -other Christians may wonder if you are saved at all. I’m talking from personal experience. It is easier to prove a person is not a Christian than to prove that they are. I have been judged with great harshness and to my shame I have judged others just as harshly.

        3. Yeah right Paul–every “appearance.” Unless you have a Bible translated into modern English. Ironically, the KJV has become a tool of Santa….errr I mean Satan……I mean fundies…hey wait a minute, Fundies=SATAN. I figured it out! I’m the man.

        4. What exactly are you talking about? You make very little sense in the statement you made? My pastor was a rebel biker before he was saved, and he still rides his motorcycle, so? That’s an appearance of evil? Okee dokee. The KJV a tool os Satan. LOL. everything CAN be a tool of the devil. ha ha. So here we go again, someone painting a broad brush stroke against everyone who may call themselves a fundamentalist by equating the whole lot with satan. nice!

        5. Brian:
          I apologize for not making myself clear. Sometimes I forget that there are those here–like yourself–who misunderstand the “appearance of evil” phrase because they only know that verse from the KJV and they have never learned that the word “appearance” had a completely different meaning in 1611 than it does now. A better word in today’s American English would be “kind.” So, by describing it as a tool of Satan, part of what I was trying to say was that the KJVonly movement has done immeasurable harm to the cause of Christ by not only promoting the use of an outdated edition of Scripture, but also demonizing the use of other, easier to understand “perversions.”

        6. interesting, I actually think the KJV is clearer. I never had any different understanding than what you said. “Better” word is a bad choice of words, in my opinion. One thing the KJV has done for me is expand my mind and help me learn a lot more about the English language and its development, as it actually caused me to study more precisely what words mean, rather than engaging in lazy, spoon-fed reading. I do believe modern versions have been corrupted. Will judge me for a personal belief? I don’t push that on others. It’s MY belief. Most people i have known accept that verse in context in terms of other verses that talk about being careful about stumbling blocks. Basically, we are to do all to the Lord, so that our life honors Him, and, in so doing, the forms of evil we can be prone to in our lives will certainly be diminished as we seek to live for Him. We all stumble, of course, and none of us live perfectly, but it is what we strive to do.

        7. To be more succinct, your confusion illustrated my point precisely. Thank you for your unwitting assistance my hapless friend.

        8. Sorry you feel that I illustrated any point you were making, because I did not. I was actually playing you. I was not confused really, just baffled you would feel the need to make such a spurious point, as if you automatically assumed I would feel that way. It was just a silly comment to make. You were projecting on me what your pre-conceived notion of “fundy” beliefs is, and you failed, with all due respect.

        9. Brian:
          I’m still unconvinced that you know the definition of the word “appearance.” That verse was one of the most misused and misunderstood verses I heard growing up in fundystan. It was used to justify all kinds of legalistic rules. If there had been a better understanding of how the English language has changed over the centuries, a boatload of harmful legalism and judgmentalism could have been avoided.

        10. sorry, but, though you wish to pat yourself on the back, you are sadly mistaken, I BELIEVE. There is no doubt, taken in context, not out, of the whole teaching on the matter within scripture, it fits well with all teachings in the Word how we are to conduct ourselves in all manner of conversation (manner of life) towards those without (outside the body of Christ) as well as other believers, especially new converts who may have weak consciences, and that we are to do ALL to the glory of God, heartily as to the Lord, to put no stumbling block that may offend before our brother, and to live in a manner worthy of our calling. Now, Jesus also said, BE PERFECT as your Heavenly Father is perfect. All these are ways of living we should strive for individually, but will never attain fully in this life. I woefully come short every day, but I do desire to be confirmed into the image of His dear Son. Feel free to tell me how wrong and uninformed I am.

        11. In other words, Brian, that verse was intended to mean, “don’t do these things because they ARE evil” not “don’t do these things because they LOOK LIKE evil.”
          This distinction is not my opinion. It is verifiable fact.

        1. May I politely say that Brian needs to lighten up most days?

          It’s gonna be okay, hun…

          Give it a few years…

        2. Actually, many people who ACTUALLY know me, think I go a little overboard sometimes with being light-hearted and joking. My kids think I’m “weird” because I am always goofing around and embarrassing them in public – just having fun. But, since you don’t know me, you are forgiven. ๐Ÿ™‚

        3. You dig your judgmental, collective holes ever deeper with such absurd statements. Actually, he is a loving man of God, a heart for people and a personal friend who you don’t know from Adam.

      1. Hmmm, let’s see what we do, and all the churches I’ve been in, in fact: Visit prisoners, visit the sick and dying, visit nursing homes, provide clothes and food to the needy, provide toys to needy families at Christmas, offer help freely in different areas, and other kinds of outreach. So all we do is send missionaries? Another false, blanket, judgmental statement.

        1. Good for you. Just because your church does doesn’t mean it is normal within fundamentalism. And many of the good deeds churches do are are seasonal or occasional, not regular ministry. In some churches it is almost like a check-off list. One weekend for this. Done. Nothing to really make a noticeable difference in people’s lives. Just enough to make people feel better about themselves, and possibly to help justify some prejudices.

          So I am glad your church is better than others. That does not undo my point.

        2. The way you judge others is astronomically amazing. Just the kind of judgment we are NOT to make of others, rather than the kind we ARE to do. Yours is not righteous judgment. For you to know what you said in that statement is to know a person’s heart, which you don’t. So, just coincidentally, all six churches I have served in had outreach ministries for helping others in so many ways, but that is NOT characteristic of those kinds of churches? Boy I really hit the lucky strike, huh? If I had served in a seventh then I am sure I finally would have been abused in all manner of disgusting ways, judged, looked down upon, rejected, called a heretic, been exposed to public humiliation, been indoctrinated into all kinds of false teachings and been disallowed of the right to engage in certain activities and behaviors. Thank God that He protected me from that seventh church, which would have set me down a path of a mournful life of sadness, depression, regret and having to routinely come to a site like this to mock and ridicule others’ beliefs and make myself feel better in doing so!

          On another note, you know what kind of church I attend (well you think you do, anyway, cuz you have been wrong on almost all counts about it thus far) and, in fact, the exact church I attend, which I openly shared. So what kind of church do you attend? I am also curious, Mark, with that about you also. I am getting to the nitty gritty here. I would be interested in as many people as possible on this site sharing what types of churches they serve in that are so sound and that have all the “right” Christian characteristics. I do not need for you to be as honest and revealing I have been in subjecting my church to the scrutiny of perfect strangers on this site. – just the kind, not the specific ones you attend. If the Lord is going to show me how wrong I and the churches I have been in are, then I need to know where to look elsewhere. Perhaps it’s time. I’ll thank you in advance for your honesty in sharing what kinds of churches.

        3. Yes sir. Just discount all the others on this board. You know best.

          Thank you for playing. At this point, I am done with trying to explain anything to you.

          Not that I blame you. I don’t. It took me long years to leave fundamentalism. Many of those years I wouldn’t have admitted to faults in the churches, either. It is hard to believe what you have not experienced.

          Have a blessed Christmas. You are my brother even if we disagree on these things. I wish you no ill. I do hope that you will always find acceptance and grace anywhere you are.

        4. as well to you. It is sad I have not gotten answers to some of my legit questions, but truly tried to answer yours.

  8. You know, as a fairly conservative Christian, if I were going to choose a hill to die on, it wouldn’t be Christmas and Santa. Nor would it be the Easter Bunny (much as I despise that creepy rodent). For that matter, tattoos and piercings, filthy language, and cartoons about odd yellow people aren’t worth my time and energy either.

    What would happen if Christians dropped their foolish stands and fed the hungry, cared for the sick, visited the prisoner, and protected the orphan?

    1. This is what revolutionized our view of Christianity: giving up the IFB standards, the nit-pickyness that had a basis in desiring to be holy yet which led to isolationism, feelings of superiority, and distraction from what Jesus actually taught. Returning to what Jesus said, however, hasn’t been an easy path. I don’t feel like I’m living the way I imagined living when we first started this journey, but it certainly is much more authentic.

    2. Hey, here’s a novel idea. Like Jesus said to the Pharisees who did all their outward deeds but missed the most important, and He said they SHOULD do those things but not neglect the others, how about we DO keep the standards the Bible spells out and ALSO do all those good deeds? Is that so hard. No one does it all perfectly, but there should be NO standards and things we aspire to being better about? everyone has different opinions about things. So how about we just don’t condemn others for theirs stand and just worry about our own? Good idea?

      1. Brian, I don’t think you get the real idea of what “standards” is all about.

        No one here is saying you should be immoral, disrespectful, sloppy about what you do or demeaning to others. That has nothing to do with “standards.”

        “Standards” go above and beyond the Scriptures. The Bible says not to get drunk with wine. So people put in “standards” saying it is wrong to drink any alcohol — despite the fact that the Bible shows Jesus making alcoholic wine, and the Old Testament Law endorsing “strong drink.” In the effort not to “sin,” the standards-makers redraw the lines tighter than what Scripture says.

        Jesus called that “teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.”

        And “standards,” the creation of men that they are, do not make people “better” morally. They may actually do the opposite as those who meet the standard look down on those who don’t. You go to church to remember the Lord? That is only fulfilling the Scriptural expectation for believers. “Standards” say that once a week will not do. No, you must also add Sunday night, Wednesday prayer meeting, Monday visitation, and Saturday Men’s Prayer Breakfast.

        And yes, here on SFL you can find a video of a preacher castigating a young woman for missing Wednesday night because she is going to college to get a better job! He is well known as a fundy.

        Paul talked about the worthlessness of these externals in the spiritual life. If you read his epistles, that becomes evident! He wrote that there was only one thing he would glory in — the cross of Christ! Not attendance. Not wearing a tie. Paul would even eat meat offered to idols! He approached others on their own level, not “above” on a pedestal of “standards.”

        Your “standards” means you won’t accept me as Jesus accepts me. It means you add requirements that God does not.

        Think about it. There are “Christians” who wouldn’t accept you, because you don’t meet their “standards.” (There are!). That isn’t right, is it?

        1. Actually, you apparently read nothing I wrote. I actually agree, in principle, with virtually all you said, just not how you would define standards specifically. Some meanings of standards: “a level of quality, achievement, etc., that is considered acceptable or desirable; ideas about morally correct and acceptable behavior.” Those definitions fit well within the biblical model of standards or principles. I made it clear I was talking about PERSONAL standards and NOT imposing those on others as a matter of requirements. That’s the Lord’s business, not mine. Paul said a lot more than what you quoted, many about standards or principles we should strive to adhere to in our lives. Yes, his ultimate glory was in the cross (or sacrificial death, and, no doubt,resurrection of Christ), as all of ours should be.

        2. “So how about we just donโ€™t condemn others for their stands and just worry about our own?” you accused me the other day or missing the larger point you were making, and that is precisely what you have done with me here. Did you somehow miss my last statement?

        3. ” I made it clear I was talking about PERSONAL standards and NOT imposing those on others as a matter of requirements.”

          Unfortunately, Brian, this does not seem to be the prevailing attitude among the Fundies I’ve known. I’m talking about multiple churches, Christian schools, homeschooling programs, colleges, and mission organizations. They did take personal standards and make them requirements for others. And your spirituality was judged on these standards.

          It’s been such a breath of fresh air these last years to attend a church where people are encouraged to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit in all matters not specifically laid out in Scripture. That means there’s a lot of diversity in the way the members act, and that’s okay!

        4. Amen to that. Actually, it is quite rational, acceptable and understandable that a church, as an organization, would maintain some level of standards for decorum, professionalism, behavior, etc., even as businesses do and so forth. The problem we enter into is when such standards become a measuring rod to judge others, to castigate, to belittle and even condemn them. That is when a line is clearly crossed. I’ve experienced that with some Christians, even in myself at some stages in my Christian walk, but I have not experienced it as a rule in the churches I served in, which were four Baptist and 2 “Bible” churches. All would be considered by most, especially on the outside, as fundamentalist. Some called themselves that, some did not. None, as I continue to state, exhibited, as a rule ,any of the extremes that are repeated over and over on this site.

      2. The Bible doesn’t spell out standards of dress code, music choices, acceptable holidays, hairstyles, and a multitude of other areas IFB schools/churches try to mandate. Therefore, I can agree with you: keep the TWO commandments Jesus gave us: Love God, and love your neighbor. Ignore the man-made standards of dress, Santa, music, and all. Here’s a good test: if the standard applies across centuries and cultures, it’s biblical; if it doesn’t, it’s man-made.

        Focus on what Jesus taught, on what separates the sheep from the goats.

        If we truly love our neighbors as ourselves, we will live our lives in a way that causes little personal offense (e.g. we won’t post signs bashing holiday aspects, and we won’t make snide comments about people who don’t dress like we do).

        If we truly love God with our whole hearts, souls, strength, and minds, we will be able to see others — women, children, Muslims, gays — as God Himself sees them: the ones He came to seek and save. We will also see ourselves as God sees us… and be humbled.

    1. โ™ซIt’s Love Brother Love, say Brother Love’s traveling salvation show
      Pack up the babies and grab the old ladies and everyone goes
      ‘Cause everyone knows Brother Love’s showโ™ซ

  9. Some time ago there was a street preacher in my area who carried a “Santa=Satan” sign around. He also had a “God is a Republican” sign, and another that said aborted babies went to hell. He had attended TTU for awhile, but as his craziness became more evident, they distanced themselves from him–especially when he ran for a local political office.

        1. Isn’t that the whole joke?

          My favorite in the genre:
          Two men walked into a bar, but the third one saw it and ducked in time.

  10. Santa is Satan, ehh? So, instead of “the Devil made me do it” we can say that “Santa made me do it!” It was his naughty and nice list! I had to help that person because I wanted Santa to bring me presents.

    Uhhh. Wait. Satan is supposed to tempt you to do bad things, right? Santa wants you to do good things. So good is bad? Or Satan’s part-time employment is to undermine his day job?

    Gotta love the fundy mentality — what there is of it (which isn’t much).

    1. Um, no, and I do not go to the extreme of what this discussion is about, as I have no problem watching fantasy movies about santa and so forth, since that is all it is, like Star Wars, Narnia, etc, but we never lied to our kids that this big fat phoney was real or that he had any part of our christmas celebration. What did that do to my kids, um, let’s see: Did they get less presents? Nope? Did they ever learn mommy and daddy were liars and might be lying about other things they hold precious in life? Um, no either. Did they miss out on candy, and good food, Christmas music, plays, fun times, family, friends, decorating, Christmas Trees? No again. Um, well, did they grow up knowing what the true main focus of a Christian Christmas celebration was, namely Jesus is the Reason for the Season? Yep. Did they grow up realizing Who is REALLY the One who provides every good and perfect gift, and who TRULY knows when you are sleeping, when you are awake when you’ve been bad or good, who truly does miracles, what the real Christmas story is? Oh yes, to all of those. Did they, from the start, know who actually worked hard all year to be able to be thoughtful and giving and provide them with all the neat gifts they received every year (namely, mommy, daddy, friends and family)? Yes again! Did they walk around deceived and delusional thinking that some overweight, badly dressed old guy who liked having little kids sit on his lap was some kind of real being who could virtually be everywhere at one time on one night all over the world and was keeping a list of all the bad stuff they did to decide if they were worthy of gifts. Of course not. My kids grew up knowing the difference between fairy tales and reality. And what, now, did they miss out on? Oh yeah, nothing. Now 20 and 17 years old. Both straight A, well-adjusted, social, thoughtful people, one studying criminal justice and the other one getting ready to study interior design, and, who by the way has commissioned and sold paintings and published her first novel at the age of 15! I’m so tired of people bashing Christians for not lying to their kids. No santa is not satan, but he is a big fat, stupid lie.

      1. Here:

        I’ve given you some paragraph breaks. ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Seriously: we didn’t have Santa & stockings either. And one of us kids grew up normal. I think. My siblings are all strange. As far as lying to kids, I only lie about the Tooth Fairy. Is that okay?

      2. My kids grew up with “Santa” — though by the time they were six they pretty well knew who “Santa” was in our house.

        There was no trauma. There was no shock that we had “lied” to them. They saw Santa as a good story of a person who loved children and was kind to them. They learned about St. Nicholas, a person who would put money in poor children’s shoes so they could have something to eat.

        A phoney? No! “A big fat stupid lie”? No! Not unless compassion and love and giving are “stupid lies.” The culture does not show “Santa” as a real person, but as a personification of what is good and right, taking care of the innocent.

        That you see “Santa” in such a negative way as you do means you have absorbed a lot of hate and negativity for no good reason.

        No, there is nothing wrong with “not” having Santa in Christmas. But there is nothing wrong with having Santa in Christmas, either. When you give a gift to another out of love, you imitate the best of what “Santa” actually means.

        And of course, on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, the focus of our family and untold millions of others is the Gift God gave us of His Son.

        1. “A phoney? No! โ€œA big fat stupid lieโ€? No! Not unless compassion and love and giving are โ€œstupid lies.โ€ The culture does not show โ€œSantaโ€ as a real person, but as a personification of what is good and right, taking care of the innocent.

          That you see โ€œSantaโ€ in such a negative way as you do means you have absorbed a lot of hate and negativity for no good reason”

          Actually, I will try to be as clear as possible, saying to MY CHILD, “Honey, there is this guy, see, a fat old guy, who lives up in the North Pole, where no one actually lives, but he does, and his little friends called elves, and they make all those toys you get for Christmas,and oh yeah, he flies around in a magic sleigh pulled by reindeer and visits EVERY house on Christmas eve all around the world, and he knows EVERYTHING about you and what you do. So you better be good, or this big, fat, old guy is not going to bring you any toys” Is actually what I was talking about and is absurd and a lie. All the other things you mentioned: compassion and love and giving, are all the qualities of Christ Who is the actual One we are celebrating and also are exhibited in the lives of my children’s family and friends. They do not need to believe in a lie to experience all those wonderful things.

          I see lying to my kids about a fantasy as negative, yes, and for you to carry that to the conclusion that I have “absorbed a lot of hate and negativity” is not only ridiculous but personally insulting.

          Finally, you have blinders on if you actually believe the culture does not put forth Santa as real. Parents go through great and convoluted means to keep the lie alive and well in kids’ lives.

  11. I suppose Satan could disguise himself as Santa.
    Satan uses many disguises.
    He disguised himself once as an angel of light.
    Is it possible he could be disguised as a preacher from Harlem, Georgia?
    If one looks for evil he will surely find it.
    If one looks for goodness he too will surely find it.

    1. WELL, “Santa” IS a lie, and Satan the father of lies, so it’s not a far stretch. I know it’s easy for those who love mocking others to join the crowd and do so, but it does all make sense. No, santa is NOT satan, of course, but the influence of the lie is certainly there. I guess I could ask all of you, what is wrong with NOT including santa in Christmas? Does it make you right because you do? So you are the righteous ones?

      1. The point is: those who celebrate with Santa will not try to guilt those who don’t. Those who don’t celebrate with Santa need to offer the same respect. That’s all. It’s not something to cause strife over.

        1. I think you misunderstand. The mocking is about those who try to force their beliefs on others.

        2. Actually, I saw a lot of specific mocking of people just for believing a certain way, not just because they were trying to impose beliefs on others.

      2. Dude, calling Santa a lie is a pretty big stretch. I mean, how far are you willing to slaughter make believe in the name of The Truth? No Sesame Street? No Mr Rogers? And where do babies come from, exactly? You see, kids have this ability to play that lets them put admittedly false stories around all kinds of experiences. And it is perfectly normal and ok. I don’t give a care if you include Santa in your celebration or not – that’s your choice. But if you have to go overboard with the rhetoric, you might be stretching it.

        1. Are you serious? No, really? Did you actually read ANYTHING I said? I made it clear I have no problem with fantasy. Some of my and my kid’s favorite stories and movies: Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Narnia, and many others like them. My favorite comedy of all time is Elf. For the 20th time I still laugh my head off when I watch it. There is a huge gulf between allowing kids to use their imaginations or enjoy the imaginations of others in stories of fantasies and parents simply outright lying to their kids about something that is not real, which is what millions of parents do every year. If you have no problem with that, then have at it, and if you think telling them a certain man exists with all those powers who actually doesn’t,then that is between you and God. It’s not my choice. And, yes, THAT would be the definition of a lie. My kids enjoy Obi Wan Kenobi, but they don’t look up at the sky expecting His Jedi starship to come swooping down, him jumping out and lighting up his lightsaber, dude. See the difference? I hope so.

        2. My favorite comedy of all time is Elf.

          Well there’s your problem right there. Repent before it’s too late.

        3. LOL. Finally genuine comic relief. Liked that one. Repenting – oh, wait, going to grab my sackcloth…check! Ashes…check! Yep. All set. Thanks! Now, going to watch Elf. Well the dog does return…oh, never mind!!!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    1. “Which is typical for most independent fundamental Baptists nowadays.” WOW! There are thousands of such churches. Have you been to MOST of them? So I’ve been a member of six fundamental, to varying degrees, churches and not one is as you described. That’s just my experience, but that’s all the ones I have served in. I have also visited others that I would not say are that way. Please let me know the large number of churches you have not only served in, but that you have extensively studied in detail to know for sure that it just is the case for ” MOST independent fundamental Baptists nowadays.

      1. Just out of curiosity, Brian, why are you still here? “A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.” I mean, you’re welcome to hang out, as is everyone, but I doubt anyone will change his/her mind about anything.

        1. I find this fascinating. I feel like I am observing a fish tank or a hampster cage. No, I am not comparing you to lower lifeforms. It is such a microcosm of the culture on this site, and I feel like an observer of that. I find the group-think mentality more and more magnetic and the irony of so many mocking others who, in the end, are really ending up doing essentially the same kinds of things. It’s hard for me to break away. The main reason is that I keep getting responses in my inbox so go back to check them out. I figure it would be rude not to respond. To some degree, I am having fun. I have gotten over the initial shock of the absurdity of the lumping everyone together mentality and the silly, juvenile term “fundy”, which apparently using said word makes a lot of people on this site feel proud of themselves. Not all, but some, no doubt. Well, that’s how it seems, anyway. . I do realize now so many have had bad experiences that they cannot seem to break beyond that point and realize we are all individuals and churches of all stripes around the world are made up of those individuals, all with different thoughts, ideas, beliefs, practices, stands, problems, errors and on and on and on, and that everyone that may fall under a certain title doesn’t fit the pat definition that so many wish to ascribe to them. Look at the catastrophe that was the church at Corinth. What a mess, but still the church of God. Anyway, peace out.

        2. I am tired. My eyes are blurry and I am very busy with other things. This is just a periodic brief diversion. Thanks for pointing out my many grammatical errors. ๐Ÿ™‚

    2. Brian, if you believe that we are individuals who have a right to different opinion go talk to the relatives of “mollywallydoodle”. There are a LOT of stories like Or do you believe mollywallydoodle, and others who say similar things, are making that up, or at least blowing everything out of proportion?

      1. That sounds like a name that might be on Sponge Bob or something. what on earth is that? If you are referring me to something else that happened somewhere else to someone else, then that has NOTHING to do with me nor my experiences. Ok, we’ve all had bad experiences in our lives. OK, now let’s move on. Nothing to see here, folks. I could go to an anti-secular humanist site, since my life was so incredibly messed up when I was under the influences of that mindset and sit there all day mocking, ridiculing and bashing such people who would identify with that term, as if all were of the same ilk, but why would I? It’s not the way of the Lord and it is also a supreme waste of my time and energy.

        1. It is easy to say “let’s move on” to victims of abuse when you have never experienced abuse yourself. Call the victims “bitter” if you want, but it can difficult to move on when the abusers are often protected, even revered.

        2. how do you know I have never experienced abuse. That is assuming a lot. Actually I have! Still, let’s move on. I have NO problem at all with a mature, godly site for hurting people, where there can be some humor, but is not all about mocking others and ridiculing a whole group of people from every walk of life, lumping them all under one category, simply because of YOUR personal experience. I had one idiot on this site, and I stand by that word, who actually said I would go to a cancer ward and ridicule and condemn the patients for not being right with God and that is why they have cancer, while I have two parents with Cancer as I type t his. That is SICK. This guy doesn’t know me from Adam, but it is the type of commentary I see on this site over and over again about people the attackers do not even know.

        3. “Let’s move on, folks” is the kind of statement BJU is making to the report of its abuse.

          “Let’s move on, folks” is the kind of statement people like Schaap said when caught molesting little girls.

          “Let’s move on, folks” is the kind of statement one uses to ignore problems you don’t want to deal with. It circumvents justice. It blames the victim.

          There are things we should “move on” about. But sometimes the wounded need to be carried and cared for even as we are moving.

        4. I have nothing to do with that, nor do millions of others. You all have continually missed my points. Your site is all one-sided, lumping everyone into one camp without distinction, labeling everyone a “fundy” (just by using that term in the first place) and you are too blinded to even see, or, perhaps, admit what you do realize. I am not diminishing anyone’s pain. I don’t know about these situations. I’ve already said, in other ways, in other statements that such things are horrible. They have not been MY experiences in any of my churches or ones I’m familiar with. I’ve had plenty of my own pain and am, in fact, dealing with a great deal of it my life right now.

        5. I pointed that phrase out because it has been used time and again to deflect real issues. If you do not wish to be associated with those kinds of arguments or situations, don’t use those kinds of words. “Get over it already” is a blame-the-victim statement.

          Whether you like it or not, and you don’t, fundamentalists are pretty much a self-described group. Their writings are voluminous. The evidence is great as to what they, as a group, believe. There are individual differences, but there are valid group characteristics.

          And despite the fact that you appear to have not experienced the same kinds of abuse that others in the group have, their sum total experiences far outweigh yours. So yes, they have a right to speak every bit as much as you do. It takes no genius to see the common threads.

          Christian Schools indoctrinate thousands and thousands of young people every year. Every year, thousands are graduated, many going into the ministry with the same ideas as they were taught. If a student learned to deal with a problem in what can be considered a spiritually abusive way from the school, what is the likelihood he will do differently in the ministry?

          No, from the roots of the tree the leaves share their nourishment. So I know what fundamentalism is. You might as well stop harping on that, telling me I don’t know. I do. I talk to others, I read, I listen.

          I am sorry for your hurts and your sorrows. Please, then, have the good graces to understand that others deal with their hurts and sorrows differently than you do — and that doesn’t make it wrong.

          But ultimately, I think we will simply have to agree to disagree. I will never convince you, and frankly, I don’t write with that as a goal. You will likely never convince me, for a variety of reasons. I will read what you write, and respond if I feel like it.

          I wish you well.

        6. Actually, to clarify, that is used in terms of a general attitude, not people’s individual circumstances. Everyone takes different amounts of time to recover from abuse. It took me two years, by God’s grace, to slowly recover and learn how to cope and also rise above such things in my own life, but I give Him all the glory. there is nothing good innately in me that enables me to do so, in fact, during that time, and it was very humbling, the Lord also revealed things within myself I needed to change that helped contribute, to a degree, to the chaos that occurred, and I have grown thereby.

          Fundamentally speaking (pun intended), there is really, in the broader sense, nothing wrong with the fundamentals fundamentalists, of which I include myself, believe. after all, in every important sphere of life fundamentals are essential: fundamentals of science, fundamentals of mathematics, fundamentals of cooking, fundamentals of fire safety, fundamentals of languages, fundamentals of basket weaving, fundamentals of Christian faith, and so on. All I can do is speak for myself, my experiences, my acquaintances, my learning, re-learning, studying, how I have seen God work in my life, and so on. In all those, I see there are basic fundamentals that MOST Christians from the most liberal to the most extreme “far right” would be agree on, the deity of Christ being one. There are others we may disagree about. For me, it simply relates to those things that a Christian believes are foundational to Christian belief and way of life and personally embracing them. Some of those for me are the one I just stated, as primary, the gospel, the inerrancy of Scripture, the doctrine of the Holy Spirit, of heaven and hell, the essential aspect of walking in faith, among others. To me, to be a fundamentalist is similar to one who is a Constitutionalist, someone who accepts the basic foundations and principles on which our country are based. In my almost 30 years as a Christian, I have seen many variances in the degree to which different fundamentals are accepted or emphasized in different churches. I would be interested to hear what specifically you believe to be unscriptural in IFB churches you have been exposed to. My first pastor taught some things I thought were off the wall, but he was a great guy, mostly sound in his faith and doctrine, and also highly educated. He was a very specialized mechanical engineer, so much so that there were only about three people in the country that could actually do his particular type of engineering. He could often talk way over my head because of his education, but was very kind and personable as well.

          You said “even if God is wrong, He will still be right because He can crush you and send you to hell. ” which is fallacious in calling Him wrong, but right in calling Him right, because, as you pointed out, only He makes the rules, He is truly beyond our finite limits of understanding, and ultimately, as you said, is right. No point in questioning that. I take Him to be altogether righteous with no sin or “wrong”. If you feel differently, I guess we will both know one day. But God is bigger than our doubts or squabbling.

          I’ve experienced very few “angry” fundamentalists. In fact, I have often found some too “soft” for my taste when dealing with some biblical issues, but most, as a whole, have been fairly balanced. However, there is a place for appropriate anger in the bible, thus in Christianity: Eph 4:26; 1 Timothy 5:20; Galations 2:11; Jude 11 – 19; Deut. 6:15. I’ve mostly found my preachers preaching about the love and forgiveness of God.

          ALL students are “indoctrinated”, no matter what form of schooling they attend. Actually, my children attended a Christian school (it so happened to be more charismatic than fundamentalist) most of their lives. My son did his last year in a Catholic one. Both are now in secular schools. In both the Christian and Catholic schools, there was a much higher percentage of those going on to college (mostly secular colleges) than the national average for high school graduates. Also, in both schools, when taking national standardized testing, ALL grades tested at one to two grades higher than the national average. This is also true in the school my church runs, which my kids did not attend, but the testing is on par. The on my son graduated from, virtually all of the graduates received multiple scholarships heading into recognized, accredited colleges. These speaks well for a Christian education, as opposed to the indoctrination of the brainwashing public schools that teach centralized government-mandated courses, where there is a very high percentage of drop outs and low test scoring. I need to clarify something at this point, though, are YOU a Christian? I think you said you are, but you just seem very negative about anything that is Christian, including Christian schooling, which would seem strange for a Christian, to ME anyway. What is wrong with schooling that sticks to the basics of learning, without all the social engineering going on in the public schools that also has an emphasis on faith and teachings of Jesus Christ?

          Your negative comments about God are pointless for me to comment on, since those are you beliefs, which I simply do not share. So we can agree to disagree, kindly.

          I also focus on all those things you concluded with, however, i also agree, and seek to follow the premise of Paul’s words: ” I have not shunned to declare to you ALL the counsel of God. Take heed therefore to yourselves, …after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears” There is a place for much more than the “warm and fuzzies” of God – the whole counsel.

          Peace to you, brother.

        7. “If you are referring me to something else that happened somewhere else to someone else, then that has NOTHING to do with me nor my experiences.”

          “Surely he hath borne our griefs and carried our sorrows.”

          “Bear ye one another’s items, and so fulfill the law of Christ.”

          “Ok, weโ€™ve all had bad experiences in our lives. OK, now letโ€™s move on. Nothing to see here, folks.” What a difference between the Scriptures and this attitude! The Scriptures do not minimize our experiences or our pain. They do not gloss them over. Christ shares them with us so that we may find strength to heal. So we should do for others.

        8. Brian, I’m glad you were able to move on from your experiences. Others haven’t been able to do that yet. Maybe someday they will. Maybe I will too.

  12. My parents were anti-Santa. We didn’t even listen to Christmas songs which referenced him. At age three, my very literal, life-is-black-and-white little brother got the idea that if we weren’t to celebrate Santa then he must be evil. So he would go through stores pointing at anything Santa-related, saying “That’s a BAD MAN!”

  13. Well,,,,my in-laws do not allow Santa in the house and do not buy gifts for their grandchildren…that’s part of the Santa evil, of course. (Everything we’ve seen says they don’t care about relationships with them…they’d rather be really righteous hard-workers). We may come over for soup, crackers, and sliced fruit Christmas evening but it will NOT be jolly.

  14. While doing Christmas cards this year, did anyone else sort through their stack of free return address labels and make sure not to put anything so vile as Norman Rockwell Santa labels on certain people’s envelopes? I felt ridiculous and mad while finishing that job at 2 a.m. but really it’s a dumb, little issue in the sea of “how dare you leave our most right church” sea of drama right now.

      1. Actually I already have some great pharisee detectors – tattoos – but its too cold at this time of the year to walk around in a t shirt, so I need something that will work now. Would cards with verses from the New International Perversion work as well? Any other suggestions?

        1. How about the stamps that show Mary with a naked baby Jesus?
          That ought to make Fundy heads turn to dust.

        2. BG –
          Jesus was tempted yet without sin.
          Naked is a sin.
          Therefore, Jesus was born with a tunic.

          Your argument is invalid.

        3. Doc F, I’ve always said that if God wanted us to run around with no clothes on, we’d be born naked.

      1. If it really wouldn’t make our family more mad and more convinced we’ve gone off our rockers/were never really saved, I would because it’s beyond dumb. We’re still working on “you’re throwing your kids to Satan by sending them to charter school,” and “you didn’t back up my psycho rant at the poor librarian for playing B-I-N-G-O with a beat.” Add in the fact that we are not literal 6-day creationists and don’t believe that seeing a guitar on-stage at church is a sure enough guarantee that the church has no true believers is enough that the most converstation we are getting out of anyone is stiffly polite and a great hardship on their part. No grace….I’m not going to poke at them with a Santa label…. Our kids already go months between seeing their cousins when they used to see them constantly. :^(

        1. I feel for you. You want to maintain good relations with your own family but are having to pay a very heavy price to do so. You are bending yourself into a pretzel to accommodate them and respect their narrow set of beliefs but don’t feel that they are doing the same for you. They are right. you are wrong. They only accept you if you believe as they do. Sorry, but it seems that your family are classic ifb cult apparatchiks. Is there any common ground? I don’t know what to say to you to help, but I will pray.

        2. Oh yes! All the additions to the gospel that fundies inevitably put forward.

          I am familiar with 6-day creationism. I was one, raised in it, schooled in it (home-schooled, that is!), brainwashed into thinking that scientists just hated God so they had this elaborately made-up fantasy that wasn’t at all true.

          Trouble is, evolution actually exists, and the theory is powerfully predictive. If it was a lie, would the theory help us so much as it has to discover other things about the world?

          Well, the church my wife and daughter attend have a substitute “AWANA” program for the younger children called “Kids for Truth.” A whole major section (several weeks long) is devoted to teaching kids (and their teachers) that you can’t believe in Jesus unless you believe in a literal six-day creation and a young earth. Anyone who believes otherwise isn’t saved.

          It is rank heresy, of course. But the church has accepted it. I attempted to point out problems with creationism to the pastor, but he brushed it off. He wasn’t a scientist, he said. He just believed the Bible so he didn’t need to know that other stuff.

        3. There is no problem with genuine creationism. We can agree to disagree. However, there is a problem making a judgment that someone is not saved because they accept evolution. THAT is absurd.

        4. You may indeed believe in “genuine creationism” — whatever that means. I know of three or four distinct “creationism” with several flavored of each. All unpalatable, in my opinion. At least now. I used to eat it up, as it were. But each flavor or kind of creationism claims to be right while the others are wrong.

          But if you believe in creationism, you will never be a very good scientist. You can’t be both at the same time.

          I have no problem with someone believing it if they want. I do have a problem with those who want to mandate it into the science classroom.

        5. Praying is good….and it’s good to not feel alone. My spouse and I used to be of that mindset (though never so severe) and God mercifully brought us out of it together so I have hope. They have camped in this wierd place that doesn’t really exist between lost and saved by grace, controlled by do/do not’s to earn God’s good will. There is no better good will than Christ. Common ground….hmmm….they really know I’m not crazy, have pointed many factual things, but the cognitive dissonance isn’t driving them crazy yet. Maybe they will choose to be gracious to a heathen? :^) We will just continue to stand on the issues we can’t bend on and show as much bend as possible toward them on no Santa labels and appropriate wrapping paper stuff. Ha.

  15. My parents were anti-Santa. We didnโ€™t even listen to Christmas songs which referenced him. At age three, my very literal, life-is-black-and-white little brother got the idea that if we werenโ€™t to celebrate Santa then he must be evil. So he would go through stores pointing at anything Santa-related, saying โ€œThatโ€™s a BAD MAN!โ€

    1. My little daughter did that too! Cool. It was always a hoot. And my kids had awesome Christmases without the big fat lie. Presents, trees, decorations, food, candy, relatives, friends, Christmas songs and movies and TV shows (watched movies with santa, cuz it is just fantasy), of course Jesus, and all the trimmings, just no lying to my kids. Go ahead and mock me for not lying to my kids. LOL. Merry Christmas! ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. Congratulations on repeatedly congratulating yourself on not being a liar (like everyone else is). Practice salt and light graciousness much? It helps your, “Merry Christmas,” not ring so hollow.

        1. No, actually, this site is bashing people for deciding NOT to have santa in their Christmas season and ridiculing them as if there is something wrong with that, so I’m just giving a little back, plus, the point still remains, my kids had/have great Christmases without the big fat lie. I just call it that. Not patting myself on the back at all.

      2. You had a tree? Isn’t that pagan? How many steps away is that from Santa. If you want to be consistant, ban trees too. In fact, there should be no giving of presents either. according too a couple of your fellow fundamentalists, the tradition of giving presents at this time of the year is originally a pagan custom. Once pagan always pagan.

        1. Ps . I will try to find the sites that say that giving presents is an act of pagan worship and post links. I know you don’t buy into that, Brian, but a number of your fellow Fundamentlists do, people who see themselves as Defenders of Truth. Those who disagree with them are probably not saved at all. Meanwhile the unbelieving world thinks we’re nuts. It looks on nd laughs. At Christians. At the Church. At Jesus. At God.

        2. I know people like that, and I simply allow them to believe as they wish, which is their right. I also know all the origins. So? I do what I believe is right. I answer to God, not you, not my pastor, not my church, not to anyone, but God. We are accountable to each other in some ways, but, ultimately, I am judged by the Lord.

        3. i was waiting for that foolishness to come up. It took a littler longer than I expected. No, I was talking about LYING to kids, not using pagan symbols that TO US are “re-used” in a Christian way. There is nothing wrong with that. Christ reclaims lives and we can do the same thing with things for his glory. I have no problem with all those things you mention. My post was clear. You failed to understand it. I made it clear we used ALL those things in our celebration, but I had a problem with the LIE of santa and it taking the place of Christ in so many ways at Christmas.

        4. To be fair, Brian hasn’t promoted the antiSanta negativity that it seems he is being accused of. I think he is just saying that he never taught his young children that an actual real Santa Claus would be bringing the presents on Christmas Eve. My wife and I raised 5 kids and we made the same choice he did. In our house we celebrated the history, legends and myth of Santa while simultaneously maintaining the primacy of Jesus during the season. Both my wife and I were raised in antiSanta homes and we vowed not to be one. Our children love the legend of Santa, and have not learned to correct kids who “believe” in him the way we learned to correct as children.

        5. Thanks, Mark. My pastor actually dresses as Santa on Christmas eve and drives around on his motorcycle like that. I don’t like that, but THAT’S ME. Also, in church today there was a fair amount of talk about santa. We used to have a cartoon about the historical truth about “St. Nick” for our kids, but now I am even against that, because, after doing more research, I have come to see that there is actually every scant evidence that such a person ever lived or at least most of what is taught about him is true. I simply see no point in including him in the celebration of Christ’s birth and I am dead set against lying to kids about it. There is just no point. But, AGAIN, I do not look down on those who do. It’s MY conviction, which I am freely sharing here. I never put anyone down or criticize people I speak to about it, but kindly just share my perspective if they are interested.

        6. Actually, who are YOU to even suggest what I SHOULD do? Isn’t that what you accuse “fundies” of doing. I actually don’t insist ANYONE should do anything. I will give account to my Lord alone, as will you. Perhaps you missed this, but, for the umpteenth time, the santa thing is MY conviction. My main objection is lying to MY kids that he is real. We watch movies like Elf, The Santa Clause, The Grinch, etc. It’s all fantasy. My kids always knew that, as much as they knew Star Wars and Narnia was fantasy, and that’s the realm it stayed in. It never became REAL to them. Only Jesus, Who is real, was real to them. Understood now?

        7. If you choose not to do the Santa business with your kids, I have no problem with that.
          If you say anyone who does choose to do the Santa routine is an agent of Satan, I think you’ve gone off the rails.

        8. And, I Never said that, did I? My OWN PASTOR does the “santa thing”, even dressing up like him and riding around on his motorcycle. Got it now?

      3. Isn’t “It’s A Wonderful Life” more dangerous than Saint Nick ?

        Saint Nick:
        1. Actually existed (as St Nicholas, bishop of Myra in the 320s)
        2. Is associated with presents for children because of a legend about how he saved three impoverished girls from having to become prostitutes
        3. is a reminder of the greatest Gift of all, the Incarnate Word.

        Whereas “A Wonderful Life”
        1. Looks realistic because it is set in the small-town USA
        2. deals with social problems that do crop up
        3. could leave children with the impression that real social problems can be made to vanish

        – such fantasies as that are dangerous, because they are realistic . But how is the figure of a jovial old fellow on a sleight drawn by reindeer who visits every home in the world in a single night to give presents to millions of children he has never met even remotely realistic ?

        Father Christmas is so remote from reality that the FC story can’t for long be mistaken for reality – but the fantasy of “A Wonderful Life” is realistic enough to lead children to have unrealistic expectations of real life.

        Some would say that because “A Wonderful Life” & other such seasonal fantasies are “not real” they are as much “lies” as Father Christmas, his reindeer, gifts & sleigh.

        1. Seriously? I mean, really? Why do I bother? IT IS WRONG TO LIE! OK, we got that out of the way. I enjoy such FANTASIES, as do my kids, as Elf, Polar Express, The Santa Claus and others. They are ALL fantasies – made up stories – parables – life lessons, etc. I don’t care if it is “IAWL”, Elf, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, whatever! Who cares? What’s wrong is lying to kids. I didn’t. You can if you wish. THAT is between you and your God. OK? What a firestorm errupts on this site by simply sharing one’s OWN reality and how he dealt with something and what he believes about it! I never condemned or ridiculed anyone for using santa in their Christmas, but shared what I believe and why. So why do you feel such a need to defend it and seek to win an argument about it with lame illustrations? Which, by the way, do not make the point you are so desperately trying to make. No, I’m not angry. ๐Ÿ™‚ One last thing, as I pointed out a number of times before, there is ample evidence to suggest that this “St. Nick” actually was not even a real person, and, if he was, claims about him are greatly distorted or exaggerated. There is no reason to have “santa” in Christmas (my opinion).

        2. There is still a huge difference between lying and pretending.

          The current Santa is pretend. My kids are figuring that out and having fun pretending with me that he fills their stockings.

          The tooth fairy is pretend. One of my kids has figured that out. (I know because when he lost a tooth a few months ago, he went to my purse and helped himself to tooth money.) The other still partially believes in the tooth fairy because she is at an age where many things seem magical.

          Aslan’s Country -this hurts to write- is pretend. But I still dream of someday going there.

          Pretending is normal and healthy for children. Parents who encourage these elaborate pretences are helping their children grow and develop.

          There is a big difference between pretending and lying.

          And regardless of whether Santa is a lie, the original post was about a stupid church sign. Even if the sign were correct, can you really picture Jesus putting up a passive-aggressive sign to address an issue? As I recall, he went in person to confront people.

        3. I work with my church’s Spanish congregation, where the members are very low income. I don’t talk a lot about Santa because, if gifts are received, they often come from donation programs. One of my little girls is a true believer, though, and she talks about Santa all the time. She doesn’t talk about what she wants, but about the magic of elves and reindeer and flying through the night. She will know soon enough, but I love to see her eyes sparkle whe she talks aboutt Santa.

        4. That’s fine for you. My little girl had the same reaction as we put up our manger scene and talked about the angels, the Power and Love of God and His greatest gift, the wonder of the shepherds, the pondering of Mary, the humility of Joseph, the long, amazing journey of the Wise Men, and so much more. I only say this because, though you chose the santa legend, we did not, and our kids had the same wonderment, but it was fueled by the truth of God, not by make believe – BUT, they had PLENTY of make believe in their lives and knew the difference.

          I find it amazing how so many point all the errors in IFB churches, yet when someone from the outside even suggests some possible things for YOU all to examine in yourselves, you get all bent out of shape, rather than having a little introspection and humility and at least conceding there MIGHT be something to consider there.

        5. Brian-the little girl I made reference to was from the Spanish congregation. She is not mine. The point-children can easily end up believing in something or someone, even if they are not directly instructed.

          I think it would be good for you to slow down, and stop trying to micromanage everything you read on the site. You come across as angry, repetitive, and non-reflective.

          I was in a fundamental church for the first ten years of my faith journey. However, I broke ties with them after going away to college, meeting many different kinds of Christians, and getting ready for mission work (which I did for 15 years here and overseas).I found that many of the “fundamentals’, in terms of lifestyle, emphasized by the three churches I had experience with, were not things I needed to worry about. I currently attend an EFCA church and would consider myself a conservative evangelical. I actively serve in our Spanish ministry.

        6. What I would say is that “I think it would be good for you to slow down, and stop trying to micromanage everything you read on the site. You come across as angry, repetitive, and non-reflective.” is, as one of your group suggested about something I said, the pot calling the kettle black. All those descriptions fairly describe so many of the comments and attitudes rallied at me over the past few days. Many of you indeed seem very angry and bitter. I am very calm, actually and amusedly smiling as I type this, a bit of a smirk on my face (just so you know). I am not heated nor angry in the least bit, in fact, I chuckled briefly as I typed that part also, as it is so what I am not. I have been way over-tired the last few days, working long days and then spending unexpected hours on this site responding to you all. I know it has become a bit of an idol to me, in that I should be doing other things. So that is my personal conviction, and I will be bidding you all a kind adieu very soon. I am sure you will greatly miss all the excitement and you can just go back to preaching to the choir in your happy little bubble here in anti-fundy land. Some of my buds might come on here together sometime just for entertainment purpose (do not misconstrue that and twist my words to suggest I mean anyone’s pain is something to be amused by, but rather it is some of the silly comments and attitudes towards other that are). Smile.

        7. I don’t care about the sign. It’s stupid. It’s theirs, not mine. My church would never put a sign up like that. The sign on our website? a pic of a sleeping baby with a tag that says, TO: All Mankind, FROM: God. World’s Greatest Gift.

          My point stands. My kids are two of the most creative and imaginative you could ever meet. We played pretend all through their childhood. I STILL do, and they think dad is weird. Lying and pretending, two distinct things. IF you tell your kids and reinforce that something not true IS true, it’s a lie. If you pretend,for fun, and they know that’s all it is, then that is just that, having fun. Once again, I am not judging you. I don’t even know what you do, and I don’t care.

        1. It isn’t arrested development that bothers me so much as arrested ethics and morality. I can’t tell you how many people – inside and outside of fundystan – are rude, obnoxious, angry, and basically display the opposite of the fruit of the Spirit. There is a whole movement of Christians (more than one, actually) who believe being right excuses being an ass.

    2. Ken Ham had some good things to say. I am not current on where he is or what he is doing. It was probably a good 15 years ago that I gave him a serious look, so I cannot comment on his status at this point. I do believe he was/is a good man of God who loves the Lord and had good motives. I simply cannot make a current judgment about his work presently.

      1. I can. Ken Ham was featured for about a week at Northland Baptist College (“Northland International University” for about a year or two, going defunct this next July!). My son was there and gave me extensive reports. That, and of course his web site, his books, his debate with Bill Nye “the Science Guy,” and a host of other things covering it.

        Ken Ham is a liar. That is one of the first things one needs to know about the people who have created and promote this Creationism stuff. They lie about what the science is, what science does and how science does it. They lie about what scientists say. They lie about their qualifications. They lie about the Scriptures, twisting the Scriptures to make it appear they are saying something they are not.

        I was once a creationist. When I was told about the lies (quote mining, misrepresenting what scientists were saying, misrepresenting what the science was, etc.) I was shocked. I had believed them so firmly that to come face to face with the fact that they were deliberately lying almost caused me to lose my faith.

        And yes, the lies are deliberate. Many of the people in this “field” writing the books fundamentalists and conservatives gobble up claim “doctorates” that have come from diploma mills. And if the doctorate is real, they are doubly damned because they have to know better! In any case, they cut and snip to try to get you to think a scientist said something they didn’t. Sometimes they make up “quotes” out of thin air.

        They misuse scientific terminology, using fancy language to completely mix up their followers, then they try to indict scientists based on their nonsense. Whenever you hear Ken Ham say, “The Second Law of Thermodynamics,” you’d better hold your nose. Not only is he wrong, he knows he is wrong. Scientists have for years been correcting his errors, but he won’t be corrected.

        Ken Ham and his cronies actively discourage people from going into the sciences and learning what scientists say first hand. And while Ken Ham will say (in one place) he isn’t saying that you have to believe a literal six-day creation in order to get saved, he strongly insinuates it in other places and outright tells you that if you don’t, you are undermining the Scriptures and the message of salvation.

        Jesus said, “By their fruits ye shall know them.” By this measure, Ken Ham is rotten to the core.

        1. A succinct appraisal, and 100% correct.
          The “creation science” promoters are deeply dishonest people.

        2. And YOU are as pure as the wind-driven snow. Nice to know I have found a perfect Christian. Thanks for sharing. Good to know none of YOUR fruit is rotten but that Ken Ham’s is. I have been straightened out. Yay. Now gotta take my tongue out of my cheek and go eat my humble sandwich. I will do some of my own research now and see BOTH sides. Thanks for pointing out the HIS sins.

        3. Brian, I never said I was perfect. But I am honest.

          I don’t pretend everything is okay when it isn’t. I don’t pretend the “Man of God” is better than others. I don’t wink at my own sin or the sins of others. I believe the punishment should fit the crime. I believe that salvation should actually mean something in the life, and that it should be expressed toward others as Jesus showed us. I have heard the self-serving rhetoric, witnessed the lies and the refusal of pastors to receive knowledge and instruction. I have been publicly humiliated for asking for help, and God forgive me, I let them do it to me.

          I no longer trust them with God’s message. The messengers are corrupt, the false shepherds are feasting on the flock they are supposed to feed.

          Supposedly the pastors and Christian leaders should be looked up to as examples of a Christian life. Instead of having a good reputation among the unsaved, they cause the gospel to stink.

          Whether you like it or not, I am qualified to see the works they do and judge the fruit as rotten. Christ tells us to do that. I am trying to obey that command.

        4. My point stands. I do not know if Ken Ham lies or not and do not need to know. I do not follow Him, but Christ. I have not, as I stated, followed what he was up to for many, many years. You are not perfect and I am sure have many struggles in your life. If you know for sure that Ken Ham PURPOSELY seeks to deceive and lie to others, then that is between you and him. Things I have read from him seem reasonable and seemed to indicate a person who genuinely loves the Lord and others. I have no interest at this time. I have my own life to live, my own church, family, friends, job and other things I need to deal with, including a struggling marriage and parents with cancer. I stopped a long time ago going on witch hunts regarding other believers, as I know I have enough of my own issues in my life to deal with before God. If I know of deception that I feel the Lord would have me reveal, I will do so.

  16. [sarcasm]Good going, IFB church! Way to make little children who see your sign cry![/sarcasm]

    “Mommy, so if that church doesn’t tell the truth on their sign, should I believe anything they say?”

  17. Thirty years ago, in a Bible college (but not a Fundy one), one of our professors talked about how being against a cultural norm, like Christmas, could really get out of hand. His parents refused to celebrate Christmas because of its association with pagan Roman holidays, but they decided that New Year was okay as it was just a calendar event. So, they had a New Year tree, New Year presents, etc., but to a little kid it all looked like Christmas. Our professor said he was one confused little kid!

      1. Are you sure they weren’t successful? My good friend’s mother- in- law ( who lives in Moscow) visits their home near Atlanta every year around the Christmas holidays. She always makes a big deal about New Years’ Eve/Day but cares little for Christmas.

        1. Maybe she is or was a Communist?
          In any case, Russian (Orthodox) Christmas falls on a different date (January 7 by our calendar).

        2. Weirdly enough, Christmas seems to be increasingly popular with non-Christians in Asia.
          Due to Hollywood influence?

      2. She may have been a communist. Next time I see her I’ll give her the President Reagan communist detector test. I’ll leave my WWRD bracelet laying around and see if she spits on it.

        1. Many Russians of her generation love Reagan, because Reagan got very good press in Pravda and Isvestia during the Gorbachev years.

        2. BG:
          Here goes for the second time. My first post of this comment showed up in the wrong place.
          Can’t I get at least a small chuckle for WWRD bracelet? You are a tough crowd.

  18. My favorite Christmas story. A little boy was shanghaied into taking part in his Church’s Nativity Play. He was a shepherd and had a few lines to say. All went well during rehearsals but on the night, when his bog moment came he got stage fright. He forgot his lines. His mother was in the wings trying to help him. Eventually she said “just say anything!” So he went up to Baby Jesus in the manger and said on a loud voice”Aww, isn’t he just like his Daddy!”

  19. The church sign has so little room but is seen by people all the time. So it always makes me scratch my head when churches choose something other than the Good News to put on their sign.

    1. i think they are, yes, trying to be provocative, but for the purpose of getting maybe some people to think differently outside the box, other than they normally will. We are so spoon fed ideas and traditions, being automatically indoctrinated into group-think mentalities in government run schools, that it truly becomes difficult to think outside those ideologies drilled into our heads year by year. It is a radical departure from the “normal” way of thinking to radically embrace Christ into one’s heart, but it does take an open mind and the ability to be both humble and willing to look at something from a different perspective. As one who grew up believing in santa but then being saved and choosing not to bring my own children up that way, I can see both sides of the coin. With all that said, I would not use church sign space, personally, for that purpose but, rather, a message of God’s welcoming love. That’s just me, though. I’m not the judge.

  20. Nothing to do with Santa/Satan but I have just been watching a program on the national geographic channel about the 2004 Boxing Day Tsunami. It was hard to watch.

    1. In the immediate aftermath of the disaster some well-known Christians claimed that it was Gods Judgement. Just what for, seemed to vary. God seemed to have lots of reasons to punish people, especially those who don’t believe. Like rtgmath, I still such disasters hard to deal with.

      1. I do believe there is a level of judgment, perhaps incrementally, that God does bring on this earth. It cannot all be ascribed to God and we cannot possibly know His mind when he does, so we cannot make such emphatic assumptions, but the Bible certainly talks about God using natural judgments against cities and nations, i.e, Egypt, Sodom, Nineveh, of course different examples in Revelation, and others. Just an observation, to not go to one extreme or the other in this matter.

        1. I think that christians often DO make assumptions about the Judgement of God and not just the lunatic fringe of fundentalism, either. Something bad happens to someone who does not think as we do, that is God’s judgement. The same thing happens to us, it is an attack of Satan. I have seen that mentality among christians in my own subculture in Northern Ireland. The certainty of such an outlook, is much more comforting than the unease that is created within us when an almighty God allows really bad things to happen to good people. Unless you think that there is nothing good in anyone who does not know Christ… then God is justified in inflicting suffering on them …

      2. Yes. I am still angry with God about this one. And yes, I admit it.

        If God’s hand was in the earthquake or resultant tsunami, then God committed mass murder, without warning, for no apparent reason.

        Of course, standard theologies tell us that God cannot do wrong, everything He does is right — because He is God. But I have come to see it differently. Abraham reminded God of His Responsibilities to do right, as did Moses. Both Abraham and Moses saw that God’s character would be judged by others, and that right and wrong were external characteristics by which God could be judged.

        Not that God would be hurt by anyone deeming Him unrighteous. After all, Might makes Right. A little omnipotence goes a long way, and even if God is wrong, He will still be right because He can crush you and send you to hell.

        Frankly, as a student of the sciences I understand the process of sublimation of tectonic plates, earthquakes, displacement and wave formation and all that. As a scientist I could leave God out of the equation. The tsunami would be a disaster, an impetus to design better warning systems and evacuation procedures.

        But emotionally I still face the “angry God” of fundamentalism, always looking for a reason to “judge” someone (“Hulk smash!”), and the huge lot of preachers that have to open their mouths to proclaim that He is judging for thus and such. Christmas, gays, Islam, whatever. So I am angry with this “angry God.”

        I do note that if it is God’s judgment, God has particularly poor aim. He causes a lot of incidental damage, kills innocent children, hurts the weak and the helpless while the rich and powerful have resources to escape and judges the righteous with the wicked — showing that He has forgotten the Lesson Abraham Taught Him (Genesis 18).

        Whenever I remember this incident, my chest tightens and my heart hurts. I get to feeling sick in my stomach. Whenever I remember this, I almost wish I could be an atheist. At least I wouldn’t get the feeling that all these years I have been worshiping a Monster.

        So hang the theology. I focus right now on Jesus coming as a baby, dying at the hands of wicked men forsaken even by his own disciples, and yet He said, “Father forgive them.” His life was marked by doing good, comforting the poor and the sinners, telling people that God is merciful and we should be, too, and lambasting the arrogant and comfortable religious leaders.

        Sounds good to me.

        1. I really feel like assigning someone blame for the way you feel rtgmath. But I don’t think it is God you should be angry with. I think it is the worst of fundamentalism that has shaped the attitudes and perspectives and feelings you have today. I truly believe that fundamentalism damaged your ability to see God for who he truly is.
          Fundamentalism causes some people to lose faith in God the same way abusive parents can cause people to lose faith in parents in general. Sorry to psycho-analyze rtgmath–but I just wanted to share my thoughts. I am trying to empathize.

        2. Mark, straighten me out, as you seem to be a reasonable, thoughtful guy, and I mean that, what is it about believing the fundamentals of the Christian faith that may have contributed to RGT having a sour attitude about God Himself? My beliefs, the teachings I have been exposed to for 30 years, the fellowship of the saints, the love I sacrificial love and caring I have witnessed, etc, have only strengthened my love, adoration, and appreciation for my Lord, His undeserving grace, His everlasting, unconditional love and my unworthiness for it, but deep gratefulness because of it. So I am truly perplexed and await your insight.

        3. Brian, for all that Fundamentalism says it is about believing in “the fundamentals of the faith”, it isn’t. It never has been. From the start, fundamentalism was turned from its stated inclusionary focus to an exclusionary force, going far beyond “the fundamentals” in what people had to believe.

          I recited, along with the congregation, the Apostles’ Creed. That should be a sufficient coverage of the fundamentals of the faith.

          Fundamentalism, however, adds new doctrines, eschews scholarship, denies reality, condemns those who don’t agree with their wild interpretations and terrible hermeneutics, supports political positions that deny justice, blame the victims, hurt the poor and give to the rich. They insist on literalism — when it is convenient — and explain away clear commands of Scripture as “not for this age.”

          Maybe you in your experience with your six churches never understood this, but these are well-documented facts about “the movement”. It says nothing about any particular individual, especially those who are deceived by the false teachings. The true fundamentals may not be in error. But the add-ons create a cult-like effect.

          Are there good people in fundamentalism? Yes. Does their doctrine lead them to do bad things? Yes. And even to be proud of them.

        4. OK, thanks for saying a lot and and saying nothing. You made a lot of ad hominem attacks on the movement without ONE actual example. I can say all kinds of things that people do, but then offer no verifiable proof and I have just wasted time and effort for nothing. I can say YOU are deluded, deceived, overly liberal in your theology, rejecting of sound doctrine, deceiving others by making blanket statements about people you don’t know, watering down the gospel and the Word of God, denying the power of God and so forth. But what have I done but make statements Such words without evidence are the kinds of cases that get thrown out of court.

          Example of Ad Hominem

          Bill: “I believe that abortion is morally wrong.”
          Dave: “Of course you would say that, you’re a fundy.”
          Bill: “What about the arguments I gave to support my position?”
          Dave: “Those don’t count. Like I said, you’re a fundy, so you have to say that abortion is wrong. Further, you are just a lackey to the KJV, so I can’t believe what you say.”

          Better yet, can you, as a Christian, name five to ten things that you DO believe or practice as a Christian? It would be interesting to see how close we actually are. Thanks.

        5. Brian, this is a forum, not a d****d research paper requiring footnotes, annotations and original sources.

          You won’t be convinced no matter what I tell you. I don’t expect you to be. But there are lots of people here who have experienced bad things in fundamentalism. Are they all liars? Are you the only brave one standing up for the Truth (TM)?

          Look up the history of it yourself. Don’t just read the narratives of those who pat themselves on the back.

        6. Once again, since things in the weeds of multiple posts often get lost in translation, here it is in a nutshell:

          1. I am SURE many people have been harmed in IFB churches. No doubt. Some actually abused, though different people may disagree with what abuse constitutes. Things that are actual crimes should be dealt with by law enforcement and the courts, and that goes without saying. Some, as the Bible says, can be handled within the church by “wise men”. I didn’t say it, God did through His Word. Paul put one church to shame for not being able to handle some matters internally. He called them babes, sucking on milk, when they should have been teachers, devouring steak dinners.

          2. There is nothing wrong with seeking help for such things, in fact, it is essential. Different people get help in different ways.

          3. It is perfectly reasonable to have some kind of website for helping such people, to seek encouragement, shared stories and resources, and to share examples of actual abuse cases and actual documented, publically exposed events. However, we should use caution and discernment in sharing the “dirty laundry” of churches, as ALL things should not be exposed. SOME things should remain private, but not all. The Bible makes clear distinctions about such things.

          4. What I think is absurd is having a site that seems almost exclusively dedicated to mocking and ridiculing others, rather than exposing in a mature and biblical manner. That is and of itself wrong and should be rebuked and exposed for what it is. I have done some of that to an extent and called out many of you for behaving in very unChrist-like manners on this site. It almost seems like an addictive behavior for some that cannot be stopped, perhaps due to PTSD’s.

        7. I was just mistaken. RTG was responding to my question to Mark, who I thought I was responding to. Also, I will say to you, that it seems your understanding of “literalism” is a bit off the mark. Perhaps it was taught you in an erroneous way?

        8. Mark, that may be. Fundamentalism (ism) has indeed damaged me.

          I have been “talking to God” (praying) a lot more frankly than I used to, using the examples of Abraham, Moses, and Jeremiah. So far, God hasn’t struck me down for being angry, even when I tell Him that by allowing certain people to represent Him, He is blackening His Name among people. Or when I ask Him what He thinks he is doing allowing all this evil to go unchecked, especially since He is all-powerful and all-loving and Providentially In Control and all that.

          I take comfort in the Scripture that He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows. I figure that includes my being able to tell Him how I really feel. If He is a God worth worshipping at all, he shouldn’t get upset with my distress and desire for answers.

          Then again, He let Job talk until He’d had enough, then He thundered at him and cowed Job into submission without giving him a single answer. It was all, “I’m big. You’re little. I’m right. You’re wrong. And there’s nothing you can do about it.”

          I trusted Christ as my Savior 41 years ago. I have never “taken it back.” I have found out for myself that fundamentalism is much more culture than Scripture, more about control than freedom in Christ or fellowship, and is mostly a religion of vain works instead of faith in a living God. Yes, that is my judgment. And no, I don’t say that every person attending a fundamentalist church is that way.

        9. You are 100% correct. As I said earlier, the Lord is bigger than our doubt and squabbling. When we are not faithful, He remains faithful. Hallelujah. He can take your anger and my occassional misplaced words out of fervency.

          I have found the circles you condemn as being just the opposite. When I came to Christ in 1985, I became very confused. I attended some really looney, out there churches. I did not see in them what I saw in the Scriptures: strange beliefs and practices, lots of holier than though, super spiritual attitudes (I even had one Catholic charismatic say “Why should I go to a Baptist Church when they don’t have what I do?” – so arrogant), not the true unity I expected from believers, etc. I was so troubled that I began being depressed and not even believing there were true churches left on the planet. The Lord gently and lovingly protected me as a babe in Christ, till I was ready. I so wanted genuine fellowship and to experience the unity I saw in Acts and throughout the Bible, but I could not. I simply prayed and honestly admitted to the Lord how I was feeling and asked, “Lord, if you truly have churches that follow You in this world, please lead me where You want me to serve you and I will trust you” and I did just that.

          Over two years after being saved, lo and behold, what church did the Lord lead me to that was accepting, not judgmental, welcoming, loving, the right balance of grace, mercy and sound doctrine, honoring Jesus Christ, allowing the Lord’s timing for growth in each believers’ life? Yep, my first IFB church. I hate labels by the way. I do not even like to say I am a Baptist. I just say Christian or born again or a believer in Christ, or, sometimes, that my faith in Christ is important to me. I hate all labels like that. I grew tremendously in my faith in four years there. It was far from perfect, as all churches are, but the majority of people were sincere, loving earnest seekers of the Lord and contenders for the faith, reaching out to the greater community with Christ’s love. We had people from all walks of life and backgrounds, different stages in their walk, and different levels of understanding. No one was rejected or cast aside. I finally experienced the love and unity of the church I saw in Scripture and I have never looked back. Amen.

        10. rtgmath wrote, “I have found out for myself that fundamentalism is much more culture than Scripture, more about control than freedom in Christ or fellowship, and is mostly a religion of vain works instead of faith in a living God.”

          Yes sir. That is what I’m finding as well. I’m having a very difficult time finding any redeeming qualities in “American Fundamentalism.”

          It’s like that glass of skim milk I poured the other day; Even though it appeared good, was still within the expiration date by a day or so, and displayed the reputable qualities of the dairy from which it came, it was spoiled and made my stomach turn.

          That’s American Fundamentalism to me.


        11. Seriously? Darrell you are killing me here. I don’t want to await moderation, just to change my moniker. Rules, rules, rules!

          So yeah, I know, this is going to get posted twice. But I am not patient.

          Anyway, here goes:

          At ease, Seaman rtgmath. Or is it Petty Officer?
          the Admiral

        12. Brian:
          I am going to remain calm and patient with you because I think you’re probably a pretty nice guy. My answer was by no means meant to be sarcastic. In fact, I meant for both of you to take me quite seriously. I do in fact think the main problem here is a simple disagreement or misunderstanding about the term fundamentalist. My suggestion to you was meant to be taken seriously–mostly because I’ve been where you are, I think I understand where you’re coming from, and I have implemented that suggestion in my own life. Don’t get me wrong–it was only meant as a suggestion and was offered because you asked for my input. I’m sorry that you were put off by my comedic approach–I was just trying to lighten the mood. I hope the best for you. I believe you are a sincere Christian who loves God and loves your neighbor and I don’t think you have any ill will toward the family here at SFL.
          the Admiral

  21. I find it remarkable that some hang their entire theology of “standards” based on our Lord’s admonition to the Pharisees in Luke 11:42!

    How easy it is to pervert the gospel for the sake of our traditions.



    omg, look at all the people with fake smiles, fake hugs and love, and , oh my, there are even “ethnic” people, and, heavens to Betsy – women with skin exposed, even tattoos, oh my – what kind of IFB church is this???? What is this world coming to.

    and, what? Girls with tight pants on and SANTA CLAUSE!!!. This can’t be. Don’t all “IFB” women HAVE TO be dressed from head to toe in appropriate Amish type dresses at officially approved and certified “IFB” churches? And isn’t santa BANNED altogether????? Something must be wrong with THIS church!

    1. psy-cho-path
      Word Origin noun
      1. a person with a psychopathic personality, which manifests as amoral and antisocial behavior, lack of ability to love or establish meaningful personal relationships, extreme egocentricity, failure to learn from experience, etc.

    1. Let me throw some endarkenment on the subject of what constitutes a true fundamentalist. There are at least four characteristics that are shared by a large proportion of those who would have the word “fundamentalist” in their title:-
      1. A belief that the King James Bible is the only True Word Of God in the English Language – or any modern language and all other (per)versions are satan-inspired deceptions that lead people astray and ultimately into worship of the Antichrist.
      2. Fundamentalism is right. Anyone else who does not follow Fundamentalist doctrines and adopt the standards of fundamentalism and in error, and it is doubtful that they are saved at all.
      3. Complete separation from all those who are in error is anyone who is not a fundamentist, or does not adopt fudamentalist doctrines AND standards. How can light have fellowship with darkness?
      4. Anything that is accepted by the Roman Catholic “Church” is clearly NOT of God, and should be rejected as a Satanic Deception.
      Maybe your church is not anchored in those four points, Brian, but it is in rhe minority.

        1. Nope. What invalidates or calls into question what you are saying is the suggestion that the way you worded those points is actually accepted by the majority of fundamental churches. All of what you said could have a ring of truth, but you worded them in a way to paint them darker than they are. I will not do the breakdown for you, as I feel I will be whistling into the wind.

      1. A fifth one is a rejection of authority above the Pastor. This places the Pastor in a nearly Pope-like position where his words are law and are considered to be THE correct understanding of God’s will. Such power tends to lead to financial and doctrinal irregularites.

        1. Actually there is no higher authority than pastor in the church body, as far as leadership, but that has limits. The church can remove a pastor and there are appropriate methods clearly laid our for rebuking, correcting and admonishing leadership. I know some pastoral authority is taken WAY above and beyond what is warranted in Scripture, but to the same token it is undeniable from Scripture the authority and role the pastor, elder, etc plays. It is NOTHING like a pope. My pastor and everyone in our church would laugh you out of the building if you suggested such a thing, in fact, every pastor I have served with would. They are leaders, pure and simple, and we are told to “give them double honor”. That means something. I have great respect for the role God calls a pastor to, and equal disdain for those, like Jimmy Swaggart and Jim Bakker who abuse it. There are those in ALL kinds of leadership roles who abuse their authority, not just IFB. To even suggest such a thing shows a great degree of disingenuousness.

        2. Actually there is no higher authority than pastor in the church body, as far as leadership, but that has limits.

          It’s not every day you get to see someone claiming to be a pastor, and replacing Jesus with whomever happens to be a Pastor at a local IFB cult. Spend less time making incorrect comments on blogs, and more time boning up on Scripture, pal.

        3. Excuse me. Do you think? I’m sorry, but I really cannot even wrap my brain around your twisted “logic”. Did I say a pastor is higher than Jesus? Amusingly, I was waiting for such an asinine comment and set my statement up as bait to see who would bite. LOL. I ALMOST put in there that of course Jesus is THE Authority over the church and pastor, but then decided to leave it out to allow such ridiculous comments to be made. I needed a chuckle. All organizations have leadership. The word “leadership” has a meaning. You simply don’t seem to understand that. ARE there roles in the church body? Did the apostles have ANY authority? DId the early church leaders exhibit ANY authority and were they shown respect and honor in their roles? I don’t need to “bone up on my Scriptures’ on this subject, but you sure do.

    2. Have you considered that it might be a diagnosis instead of an insult?

      Seriously. You come into the group dressed for war, tell us that the premise of the group is all wrong, rebuke Darrell, question the salvation of a lot of folk here, tell us that we are lying, that our experiences of fundamentalism can’t be true of a movement in general because you have never experienced it, and ….

      The kicker is that while you said there is no hate in your church, you have definitely shown hate in yourself. Your attitudes have been typically “fundy.”

      Yes, we have given back in good measure. We have reasoned, teased, cajoled, explained, snapped at you, used sarcasm. We aren’t perfect. We never said we were. In point of fact, many of us are still connected to the fundy world and are striving to get out before it infects us any further. There are broken people here needing healing.

      I am very sure you are a nice guy overall. The people in the IFB church I “separated” from are, as individuals, quite nice. At least as long as one doesn’t challenge their preconceptions and encourage them to get out of their comfort zones. Some of them have a truly vicious side you would never guess at from being in church, but their nature is definitely shown.

      The thing about false doctrine is that while you are in it, you think you have the “truth.” You can’t see why others don’t see it the way you do, since it is so plain and clear. If you are plugged into a system and are in good standing, you feel the love and acceptance. It is what you do with people who don’t conform, don’t accept your authority, don’t believe the way you do that brings things into focus.

      Go ahead and bask in the love of your church. Believe what you want. Enjoy it while it lasts.

      Please forgive me for my offenses and offensiveness. I have strong feelings about the subject. I am sometimes too direct or blunt. I probably have been here. I definitely talk too much.

      I wish you peace and joy as you grow in Christ.

      1. I am so weary of this. You have no idea how many MORE e-mails I have to weed through from you guys. GIve it a rest, man. I was not dressed for war. I was doing a search for something about Christmas, of all things, and it took me HERE – the Twilight Zone I am beginning to think: Man enters website and is simply unable to ever leave. LOL.

        How did I rebuke Darrell? I think I actually heard from him once. He has been quite absent through all this as far as I can tell. I’ve actually been rebuked, mocked, insulted, ridiculed, lied about and falsely accused and wrongly associated more than anyone since this all began. No one ever addressed the issue of that idiot suggesting I would go to a cancer ward and and blame the cancer patients for their cancer and basically insult and mock them. That is just sick, and not one person rebuked HIM for such an inflammatory insult. THAT is indicative of hate, nothing I said. Tell me ONE thing I said that smacks of hate. I hate no one nor do I display hatred.

        To the contrary I said I WAS aware of abuses and behaviors in some IFB churches. Missed that one too? My qualm is with the mocking, very unChristian and, yes, often hateful tone of this website, not that it points out perceived errors and abuses, some of which, I am sure are true. BTW, go WAY back to a few days ago when I first was led here by the Lord. Remember when I asked forgiveness for some of my initial tones and word choices? Have you noticed a change? I guess people in anti-fundy land hold onto grudges for a long time? Yes, I give as good as I get and still use sarcasm, but in kind when it is applicable. I have mostly been thoughtful and serious of late, and I think you know that.

        You simply seem to have heavy blinders on. Case in point this statement: “Some of them have a truly vicious side you would never guess at from being in church, but their nature is definitely shown. ” RGT, whatever your real name is, do you genuinely NOT know that that statement is true of EVERYONE and in every arena in life? What kind of church do YOU attend? Do you realize not one person here has been gracious enough to answer that very simple question. You all know a lot more about me than I you. I would like an answer.

        your next statement demonstrates your own blindness and the need to remove that huge pine plank sticking out of your eye: “The thing about false doctrine is that while you are in it, you think you have the โ€œtruth.โ€ You canโ€™t see why others donโ€™t see it the way you do, since it is so plain and clear. If you are plugged into a system and are in good standing, you feel the love and acceptance. It is what you do with people who donโ€™t conform, donโ€™t accept your authority, donโ€™t believe the way you do that brings things into focus.” I know you don’t, but I will ask anyway: Do you realize that entire statement seems to be about YOU? The very think you despise is the way YOU are coming across with every self-righteous statement of greater enlightenment and knowledge that you believe you possess over those of the “fundy” persuasion. So NOW you have THE Truth and all the answers. Good for you, Ol Boy! I’m happy for you.

        Finally, your last statements, which I will not quote, are nothing but condescension, for you to presume to know, at the age of 49, after 30 years of walking with my Lord, mostly faithfully, with some valleys in there, that I have NO clue of what I speak, that “it” will not last (are you a prophet now also) and that I am under some delusion about the people I know and love? Yes, I also have “strong feelings” as well. And this is becoming very draining. I see very little freedom, grace, kindness, humility, graciousness or true joy exhibited on this site, and that is very sad. Go to my church’s site, which SHOULD BE , since it is supposedly a “fundy” church, so hard and cruel and domineering and DOGMATIC (cue the drums and dramatic music) but what you see is real and just the opposite, and, I might add, just the opposite of this site as well.

    3. Brian,

      That was not an insult, merely an observation.

      For all your verbage you haven’t seemed to really “listen” to what is being said here. You’re like the accused who represents himself in a jury trial. We all know how that works itself out in the end.


  23. You and many on this site need to take a long hard look in the mirror and do a lot of introspection. You really do not know how you appear to outsiders stumbling upon this site. It has been a fascinating study for me, to say the least.

      1. what a laugh. All ANYONE on this site has been doing is trying to tell ME how wrong I am and that I ‘just don’t get it” and that I won’t listen. So how many of YOU are listening?

      1. Actually, NO. I’M the outsider looking in, not you. So I am not the pot calling the kettle black (my kettle is silver anyway). Sorry. Try again. Those in the fishbowl have a hard time understanding the outside world. There really is one – really – not kidding. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      1. I am SO tired. What part of the country are you in? Anway. “Santa” is a made up character, like Mickey Mouse, Elf, Obi Wan Kenobi, The Tooth Fairy, etc. Satan is VERY real. So, no, they are not the same. Now, do you people in anti-fundy land deny Satan DOES have great and subtle influence in this world? Do you KNOW what, in fact, he (or his minions), have or have not had SOME specific influence over in order to deceive and lead people astray? Crickets chirping. I didn’t think so. DId he have some influence in the santa myth, in the lying to kids about it, in the taking attention away from Jesus to put it on santa? I don’t know. Possibly. Now, oh much more enlightened ones, do tell me what the REAL TRUTH is, since you all have it. BTW, yep, overheard in store today: “Honey, if you don’t listen and take care of your things, santa isn’t gonna bring what you want.” Impressionable little girl: “Why, mommy?” Deceiver, I mean, Mom: “Because you have to listen and do what you’re told and take care of your things OR ELSE SANTA will not bring you the things you want.” I just love listening to parents lie to, bribe and extort their own children in public. It does a heart good.

        1. No one is telling you that you have to include Santa in your Christmas. No one here has said you must.

          On the other hand, you accuse those of us who have or do tell our children about Santa of lying to them. And since lying is wrong, you are telling us that by including Santa in our Christmas that we are sinning.

          Get over yourself. As the Scripture says, let each person be fully persuaded in his own mind. Those of us who include Santa are not sinning. You by excluding Santa are not sinning. You can believe Santa is a “big fat lie,” but we don’t have to. Santa’s origins are in St Nicholas, a real person.

          Tired? Give it up. You are not going to spread guilt on us. You stand before God, as do we. We have to make our own decisions.

        2. Actually, you are creating a straw man. I never suggested anything about what YOU should do or not do. Just the opposite. I spoke the truth. Telling someone something not true is a lie. Period. I chose not to do that. Can I state that? What you choose is your decision. Don’t use subterfuge to deflect truth away from you. IF you feel guilt (I don’t know if you do) then that is YOUR conscience. It has nothing to do with me speaking the truth. If you tell your children a giant meatball roams around the country at night eating cows to get bigger and is going to swallow the world some day, well, first, that would be stupid, but, second it would be A LIE. Cuz it ain’t true! Do what you want. Tell your kids about some guy who may have existed a long time ago(there is even doubt about that) who has nothing to do with the gospel and the story of “God so love that world that He gave His only begotten Son…God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world but that through Him the world might be saved…etc”. and then go even further and try to convince your children that not only did he exist, but he still does and he is, well., you know the rest of the fable told as truth. Go ahead and tell it. I’m not better than you. I sin. I mess up. I believe THAT is a sin, since lying is a sin, but I’m not judging you, meaning condemning you or saying you are bad or anything. It just is what it is. That’s sin one I don’t do. Others I do. OK? Can we ALL agree ALL have sinned and come short of the glory? Can we? I am NO better than any of your, nor you me. We are all under the SAME grace. Amen.

        3. NOw, can we STOP – please? I have presents to wrap. First, though, is there anyone courteous here who can answer some legitimate questions for me, since no one has yet?

          1. I would be very interested in what kinds of churches many of you have ended up attending, just so I will have a better context for what you all think is a “true church”. I am genuinely interested. I really have no clue. As I said, you all know a lot more about me. All I know is you seem to have a lot of bitterness towards those you call fundies.

          2. What specifically, without long prose, are some major DOCTRINES you feel “fundies” are wrong about. I just want some of the big ones in a nutshell. Also, without sarcasm, please throw in some of the practices you have felt were extreme, unscriptural, hurtful, etc.

          3. Without naming names or condemning individuals OR specifically identifying yourself as a victim, can some of you share with me real abuse situations that occurred so I can have a better idea of what many are recovering from. And I don’t mean things that have been reported in headlines, but things you all have personally experienced.

          Thanks. I’d appreciate some responses.

        4. Brian – you have questions. Here is your answer.

          Go back and read the previous posts. And the comments. Read them all. That will answer every question you have. And it may, I repeat may, give you some empathy to our stories.

        5. Sorry, I actually have a life, a family, and a holiday to celebrate. I believe I considerately took the time to answer virtually every question asked of me. Surely, if anyone here has focus in their lives regarding those things I asked, a few simple answers should be easy enough.

        6. Current church: Pentecostal

          Doctrines: salvation by works (this is not stated, but implied, if a person does not confirm to an outward standard, they must not have been saved in the first place); once saved, always saved (ignores a good portion of Hebrews); focus on minor things while ignoring major things (using the pulpit for political agenda while ignoring the hurting people living next door); God is an angry, vengeful god

          Abuses: depression is a sin, most likely caused by demon possession; the body is a temporary dwelling, therefore don’t take time off for health problems; sexual abuse is not as bad as the bitterness and anger a person has about the abuse; forgiveness means allowing a person back into relationship with you

        7. I will gently respond to each point, even thought I should be up watching Christmas with the Kranks with my parents…

          MY experience in six churches and MANY more I have been affiliated with, as well as hundreds of others (believers) I have known in thirty years:

          Salvation by grace alone, though faith alone – emphasized deeply and heartily. I never heard or believed anything else nor heard anything else preached.

          As RTG pointed out yesterday, By their fruits you will know them. He used this against Fundies to state he believed some were not really saved, which you are now accusing fundies of doing. I have never seen that. I have seen an attempt at discernment with OPINIONS that someone MIGHT not be saved, just at RTG suggested, but not in a critical, hurtful way. We all have opinions, but I never saw nor engaged in what you are expressing.

          I believe eternal security is a clear biblical teaching that I once did NOT believe, till the Lord humbled me and allowed me to see it clearly in His Word. I believe your understanding of those Hebrew passages in context with the entire Scriptures is faulty. We can agree to disagree on this one. Believing this does not make a church “bad”. It is a testament to the power and enduring love of the Lord for all His children.

          I’ve seen very little focus on “minor things”. Sometimes there’s talk and preaching about lesser issues, as in ALL churches, but the major doctrines of the faith, the work of the ministry, serving and witnessing of CHrist to others both in word and deed out of genuine love have been the primary focus of my churches and my life.

          I cannot relate to a church, nor a life, of ignoring hurting people, ever. Most of my pastors have used expressions such as the church is a Holy Spirit hospital or a place of healing. I’ve heard few people express this and live it as much as my current pastor and so many people in my church.

          God IS an angry God of vengeance : speaking of Hebrews, vs 10:31; Rom. 1:18; Ex 4:14; Is 35:3 – 4, BUT He is ALSO a loving, kind, compassionate, forgiving, and eternally merciful God. You cannot deny what the Scriptures teach. They clearly teach both. So teaching the whole counsel of God makes a church wrong? How so?

          Depression CAN be caused by sin. That ALSO is in the Bible. I know personally times when I elevated my own will and desires above God’s and became depressed because of my heart attitude. However, depression can also be clinical, which I have had. There is also a difference between sorrow and depression. So, depression is not always caused by sin, but it can be. Once again, you seem to want to pick and choose what is truth, like off a menu. NO ONE should be judged due to depression, but shown compassion. I’ve never seen a hurting person in church hurt BECAUSE of their hurt.

          People actually tell people not to take time off for health issues? You guys really were in EXTREMELY troubled “churches”. I’ve never heard of such a thing. It seems we have health issues we are praying on all the time in our church and reaching out in love to those folks. I’ve been on the receiving end of that love and outreach.

          The thing about sexual abuse is twisted. Again, it’s never happened in my entire 30 years of ministry. I’ve been in leadership positions and would have known, unless something was covered up. I do know that some people were required to leave due to such issues and the law was involved.

          I was not sure what you meant about the forgiveness part, if you were saying that was wrong. Not sure. Forgiveness is the release of a debt, no matter the form. Jesus, of course, is our supreme example of that.


        8. Brian,

          When the IFB churches I’ve been associated with focus on the true fundamentals of the faith, I have no issues. For example, I could recite the BJU Creed happily and agree. I am someone who would probably now self-identify as a conservative evangelical (still weird to write that after spending most of my life calling myself a fundamentalist).

          The problem is that an inordinate amount of time is spent (in my experience) on issues that are not fundamentals of the faith yet are turned into major doctrines.

          1. Separation – I don’t have it all figured out, but certainly Jesus Himself didn’t “come out from among them and be ye separate.” He lived among us. He didn’t isolate Himself. And He prayed that we would be one. I wish all churches that agreed on the fundamentals of the faith COULD be unified, but the IFB won’t, preferring to separate over countless issues, some doctrinal, some related to standards. I grew up thinking nearly every other Christian that wasn’t IFB was backslidden and perhaps even unsaved. What a terrible assumption!

          2. KJV-onlyism – So much vitriol and untruths were directed at other Christians if they didn’t use a 500-year-old translation.

          3. Music – It’s fine for churches to sing only hymns with only piano — that’s their freedom in Christ to do so — but I firmly believe that they are wrong when they teach that other churches are evil and worldly if they choose to worship a little more in keeping with Psalm 150.

          4. Legalism – Most of the IFB fundamentalists I know define this as needing works to be saved, thus saying that it doesn’t apply to them, but Paul is clear in Scripture that if we begin by faith, we do not continue through our own efforts. The Gospel is for us today, now, always, not just on the day we prayed the sinner’s prayer. The IFB churches I was part of were clear that “good” Christians behaved certain ways, and many of those things were EXTRA-BIBLICAL, issues that now I believe are under Christian liberty and should not become areas in which we judge one another (and separate from one another).

          5. Focus on appearance – The church was so focused on certain outward standards like church attendance and clothing that issues like love, patience, and gentleness were often ignored! Also sometimes serious sins have been ignored because dealing with them would tarnish the perfect image the church was trying to project.

          6. An inward-focused life – everything was about church: being at church, inviting people to church, serving at church instead of focusing on living out our Christianity in the world, among our neighbors, in our culture.

          7. Teachings on the Kingdom – Because of dispensationalism, I was taught that the Jews rejected the kingdom and thus we are now in the church age so Jesus’ teachings on the kingdom did not apply to us (like Matthew 5-7). I disagree with that now. The risen Christ said to go into all the world and teach ALL that He had told them, not to ignore some of it because it was now “the church age.”

          Not all of these things were baldly stated, though some were, but these things DID make up the atmosphere of most of the IFB churches I attended and I believe they distract from the message of the Gospel.

        9. As far as self-titles, you call yourself a “conservative evangelical “, very similarly I prefer for myself a Constitutional Christian, meaning as far as my politics, I line up with the constitution, and as far as my faith, I line up with Jesus Christ (or try to).

        10. BTW, I freely acknowledge that not all IFB churches are KJV-only, but my personal experience has been heavily influenced by them.

        11. Pastors Wife, my experience of Ulster Protestantism is very similar to your experience of American Fundamentalism. I have, however experienced all kinds of christoanity from extreme rule-keeping consevatism to wall-bouncing Charismatic, and have the scars to prove it. Right now a lot of people would describe me a “Conservative Evangelical” and I can live with that.

        12. Personally I would prefer to be known as a “christiam ” or a “follower of Jesus” but some people need to see labels. I just hope I don’t get lost under all the labels other christians want to stick on me….

        13. Brian, I was not picking and choosing about the doctrines and/or abuses I’ve encountered in the four IFB churches I’ve attended. Perhaps I should have put the word “only” in front of several items. Depression is only caused by sin. God is only an angry god. The focus is only on minor things. Etc.

          Anyways, I know I will not convince you that I have encountered these teachings. But I only lie about the tooth fairy and where those Snickers mini bars went. ๐Ÿ™‚

          Merry Christmas!

        14. Did you just actually suggest I thought you were lying about those things? In everything I said, when did I ever give that impression? I certainly do not. I KNOW, as I have stated so many times, I KNOW there are extremes (yes I have a habit of using caps to emphasize – sorry). All I have done is point out MY experience, which is entirely genuine, but which most on this site have mocked, since what I have described does not fit into the IFB model you have constructed and that you think all people of that persuasion fall into. I simply don’t fit the mold and I think it confuses many of you. For instances, honestly, how many of you were stunned or at least doubtful that my pastor actually dresses up as santa to go drive his motorcycle and visit people and that I actually OPENly disagree with him about that, or about the very eclectic types of movies I enjoy as a “fundy”, or that I actually DON’T look down critically on people who think or act differently than I? I’m sure some of you are still scratching your head raw wondering how a “fundy” could be that way.

        15. I didn’t intend to make you angry; I intended to make you laugh about the tooth fairy. I apologize.
          I have heard you. Your churches were not like that. Mine were. Obviously you found the good ones. I didn’t. I believe you that there are many Fundy churches with people who love the Lord.
          This site is to help those who’ve encountered the other kind. And much like people who work in stressful jobs develop “gallows humor”, those who are recovering from abuse develop sarcasm. Eventually people heal and grow, but it’s not a process that can be rushed.

        16. I’ve been on an emotional abusive roller coaster ride for two years in concentrated fashion, yet it has not made me bitter, but better, not sarcastic, but sanctified. NOW PLEASE LISTEN!!!! I am NOT saying I am better than you, nor that you are faulty in anyway. I am saying such things do not NEED to make one that way. I do not like blanket statements, and you made one in saying “those who are recovering from abuse develop sarcasm.”, and that is only true with some people, and it does not have to be true. I actually feel badly, truly, in my spirit for some of the sarcasm I have used on this site in kind. It is genuinely not a characteristic of mine of late, but it is easy, unfortunately, to “let loose” on the internet, and the Lord has been speaking to my heart, even as I have sat here the last few hours. So I am sorry for times I have been over the top and ask everyone’s forgiveness for those times. I pray you can truly find full healing in the Lord for what you have endured, and truly casting all your care on Him for He cares for you, and knowing he IS ABLE to do abundantly more than we can ask or even think is such a blessing. So I trust He will enable you to lay it at His feet, like Mary, and receive His healing.

        17. You’re very angry. I wonder why.
          But this baiting game has gotten dull. I do wonder if it will hit 500 comments.

        18. TieceyKaye, do you think it is possible for people to be angry and judgmental while being convinced they aren’t?

          Remembering my fundy days, I wouldn’t have described myself as angry, and I wouldn’t have considered in expressing my beliefs that I might be abusive and have a bad attitude. In my mind I was right, the other person was wrong, they ought to have seen it my way and I had no need to see it their way.

          In fact, pastors “training” us would tell us that we should be in control of the conversation. Too much empathy and understanding could lead us astray.

          So I would tell myself that I was being calm and rational and loving, even when I sliced others to bits.

          We all practice some amount of self-deception at times. We know it is common in the churches we came out from. Maybe is really is more common than I have been thinking.

        19. RTG, that SEEMS like an underhanded swipe at me. Not sure. But I assure I am not angry in the least. LOL. I truly thought we moved beyond that last night.

        20. As far as you and I are concerned, things are a lot better. The problem is, I think, that you don’t realize how you come across to others.

          That is a common problem. I’m pretty sure it happens to me. You probably make some of the same misinterpretations I do, writing emphatically but not understanding that those who read it will read angry. Then too, some of our emphasis may have a bit of anger behind it that we don’t recognize.

          So it wasn’t a swipe. It was an observation. Some of your writing sounds angry, even when you say you aren’t.

          In a lot of ways I think you and I are similar. That may explain part of our clashes. So maybe, if I look at you in much the same way I look at myself, then maybe I can understand you better.

        21. Well, for one, I did admit to some wrong tones and word choices already. I have also repeatedly admitted I am not perfect and also do not always see things clearly. I’m human. I know that. Once again, and maybe this IS (emphasis) where we are similar, many of the things you say about me I see the exact same kind of attitudes exhibited here by many, lots of bitterness, anger, scorn, and those who engage in it seem blinded to it. Anytime people get into a a group of like thinking, it is EASY (emphasis, not anger) to get caught up in the mood and tone of said group, get tunnel vision and not realize how outsides see the group. Touche that you could say that same thing to IFB churches (but, wait, also to any group of people with a certain mindset). I’m really done trying to point any of that out. Love in Christ.

        22. another judgment of another’s heart by another person on this site. I am not angry in the least bit. I have seen a lot of bitterness, however, demonstrated on this site, not by all, but by many. Merry and Joyful Christmas to you and yours!

        23. That’s true.
          That type of pastor training is sick, BTW. I thought the Scripture said to weep with those that weep. But our teacher training was to remain a stranger to our students and their parents, so I’m not surprised.

        24. My pastor genuinely weeps every church service over some known hurt, or tears of Joy for the Lord’s goodness. I experience LOTS of weeping with those who weep in our church, including in my own life. Peace.

        25. Actually, for me (each to his own) caps = EMPHASIS. I admitted I have a BAD habit of doing that? So you are actually going to judge me about that? So “fundy” of you. ๐Ÿ™‚ Love.

        26. And that sounds snarky and sarcastic. Sarcasm is cutting with words.

          I know, I do it too. But it is something I have to apologize for. When others feel sliced and diced, you can’t blame them for getting out their cutting tools as well. The only way to stop the bloody mess is for someone to stop, and not start back.

          I guess that goes along with the “ye that are spiritual ” sort of thing.

        27. In all seriousness, it is interesting that I am doing a study currently on the difference between righteous anger and ungodly anger. I actually don’t have either of those towards any of you at this time. I did have SOME (emphasis) godly anger at some of the more hurtful things said on this site that smack of ungodliness, mocking and scorning of others who are godly people, but I prayed for those engaged in it, and it passed. Love in Christ. ๐Ÿ™‚

        28. I have found that what I interpret as “godly” or “righteous” anger usually isn’t. There may be the briefest of moments when it starts that way, but all too quickly devolves.

          Of course, that is me. But I doubt I am unique in that area.

        29. Ah. “For me…” is a great answer to many arguments. It requires no logic whatsoever.
          This is fun! I wonder how off-topic we can take this thread. Pot-stirring is my specialty. Pot-smoking is my neighbor’s.

    1. There you are again, Brian. Are you for real? Surely you are joking or really, really naรฏve. I say so not to insult you but to encourage you to get out of your cramped little box and actually “seek the Lord”. When you find him you’ll be amazed, liberated and blessed with greater understanding. All else will pale in comparison.

      1. There I go again? That is an old post. Trust me, I have sought the Lord and found Him to be my all in all and sufficient to my every need. I think you have missed a lot of the very kind and civil communication between others and myself since long after I posted that response. Peace.

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