228 thoughts on “Rights for Me (But not for Thee)”

  1. Galatians 3:28 1599 Geneva Bible (GNV)
    There is neither Jew nor Grecian: there is neither bond nor free: there is neither male nor female: for ye are all [a]one in Christ Jesus.

    Did Satan preceed Jesus Christ?

    1. Good point. So, to the extent that equal rights is a biblical teaching and they are ascribing that teaching to the devil, isn’t that how most demoninations define blasphemy of the Holy Spirit?

  2. In the article about this that Darrell shared on fb, the pastor said they did it just to see if people are reading their sign – that’s a flat out lie.

    1. And in the article linked above (might be same article) it says they changed the sign to read:

      “Didn’t mean to offend. Everyone needs Christ.”

      The church just Jesus-juked the town!

      1. Whenever someone says “no offense,” it means, “I know this is offensive, but you’re not allowed to take offense, because I said so.”

        “No offense, but you’re almost as stupid as you are fat.”
        “No offense, but your kind never get these very funny jokes about how dumb, lazy and greedy you are.”

        1. A spinoff of this is the tendency I’ve noticed lately for young people to say “Don’t judge me!” as they tell you something horrible they do.

      2. The pastors explanation that the sign was just general life advice about courtesy and unintended consequences holds no water whatsoever. The unintended consequences of expanding rights is much more intentional marginalization of the Klan, various chauvinistic interests, etc, and not any real harm at all to innocent bystanders.

        1. Oh, so he was saying that demanding equal rights is merely discourteous to those who want to deny you those rights?? Okay, I understand now, I shall return to my local IFB church this Sunday and rededicate my life to God’s true church. Amen, whew, guh-lorry!!

        2. That seems to be his defense in the article I read, just general life advice that you should consider the feelings of oppressors when you are objecting to oppression.

        1. PCC was on that bandwagon for quite a while when I was at PCC. I couldn’t help but noticed they seemed to think they had to right to have A Beka Books be untaxed while the “no rights” policy primarily applied to students interaction with the school’s authority.

        2. I got that in all the various incarnations of fundy I have been in. My parents told me the only rights I had were to obey them instantly and without question. The churches and BJU told me I had no rights except to obey God. God has all the rights to make choices, decided the rules and the outcomes, and so on.

          Very, very anti democratic. “Democracy” and the right to vote was often railed against. “We are a Republic, not a Democracy” was often declared. The only “right” really praised was the right to bear arms, and that went with the gnashing of teeth over the fact that citizens weren’t allowed to bear WMDs. The right against self-incrimination was good for US citizens, but not for blacks.

          Yes, you get the disconnect.

    1. Especially when one considers that fundamentalist Christians are out front and center bitching and whining about their “rights” with a fair bit of regularity.

  3. After so many posts on this site that were unbelievable, this one is what dropped my jaw to the floor.
    It amazes me more each day how these types of churches go way out of their way to offend as many people as possible. They are Pharisees, in every sense of the word. They proudly pose with their HUGE black Bibles for pictures, with the required suit and tie, slicked backed hair and a self-righteous smile. And, THAT is supposed to attract people to Christ. My mind goes back to Jesus’ time. The Pharisees marched around the temple with their best clothes on…….and Jesus was actually going where the people were….because that’s where you have to go if your goal is to find people to lead to Christ. Not march around the temple/church with your fancy clothes on and expect people to flock towards you.
    I didn’t think I brought my Soap Box to work today, but I found it. 🙂
    One story this reminds me of is from my fundy church I grew up in. This happened after I left. Right before church started, a lady came in the door to visit the church, dressed in what I’m sure were nice clothes. It was her first time. One of the deacons, a guy I knew, met her in the lobby and said, “You must be a visitor. OUR ladies don’t wear pants.” She turned around on her heel and walked right out. Talk about offending people. What if that were her only attempt to go to church?
    Off my soap box now.
    Y’all have a great weekend.

    1. Are you sure he said “OUR ladies don’t wear pants”?? In most fundy churches he would have just said: “LADIES don’t wear pants” and left it at that.

        1. Wanna know what’s funnier? The Vagisil ad about stopping “feminine itch” above the two-person underwear.

          Too weird.

      1. I showed my parents (who work in non-fundy Bible translation) the God’s Glory Bible. Back to a few weeks of ads for that. Oh well, they sent it to their formerly Muslim coworkers, who got a good laugh and suggested they’d ask the Taliban to sponsor that translation project.

    2. You got me thinking Bert. And I don’t recall seeing your name before so welcome to the community.
      How many times have we heard that we need to be different in order to make a difference with the expectation that people would want to know why we were different? And then being different means music, dress code, party affiliation, theater attendance, KJV, pet peeve du jour. Mt 5:16 is where the premise comes from that our light and saltiness is what will cause people to glorify our Father. Except rather than secular (oooh WORLDY) standards from the 1950’s, the things that create light and salt are the preceding beatitudes. Being poor in spirit, mourning over unrighteousness, being gentle, desiring personal rightness with God, being merciful, being pure in heart, and being a peacemaker. I think this is paralleled by the fruits of being Spirit-led in Gal 5:22,23. In other words, personality traits having nothing to do with the vaunted “standards” and certainly the exact opposite of this sign or the smug self-superiority of Shelton’s homeless tweet. In fact, those standards would seem to be a lot closer to practicing your righteousness in order to be noticed by men (Mt 6:1)

    3. I don’t know if this is true but I heard a story of a lady whose life was starting to fall apart -lost job, marriage falling apart, daughter astranged from her – was in despair, and decided to try God. She wanted someone to talk to, and pray with her. She went to the nearest church, which was not IFB by name, but little different from them. She was clean and neatly dressed, but was wearing pants. She went to the church but was stopped at the door. “Women should not come into church dressed like that. How dare you! Go away!” She went away, and ended her own life that night.

      1. At the church I grew up in, the pastor’s wife was sent to tell a visiting woman (who was wearing pants) that women did not wear pants to our church. However, this happened after the service–they generously allowed her the chance to get saved first. Needless to say, she never returned!

        1. At least it was a woman who told her, and they were nice enough not to embarrass her in front of the church. I do hope she found a church not so legalistic.

  4. So they are shocked that people took offense to the sign?
    Fundamentalists seem to lack self awareness. They are unable to hear how others hear them or see themselves the way other see them. So they create this sign and no one is able to step back and say this might be a problem? Or do the people who saw the problem remain silent so they are not silenced?

  5. Oh Tony Green. …. what a stupid thing to say. Although I can see Bob Bevington making a joke like that from the pulpit.

    To there credit, even though the part of town they are in began to run down, rather than move the church as some parishioners wanted; they chose to stay and minister in the community.

    1. Did they do it because they had ministry in mind or because moving out would seem defeatist as if they really just needed to knock more doors. My church went through that same situation where the demographics changed.

      1. Not sure . I know it was a predominantly white congregation that wanted to move to the suburbs. They chose to stay and serve what has become a majority undeserved black demographic.

        1. RTG you made the exact comment I was about too. Isn’t it funny how one letter changed things…

  6. I notice that on the Knoxville Baptist Tabernacle’s web page about its bus ministry, the word “buses” is misspelled.
    Do they call themselves a “tabernacle” because they can’t figure out how to spell “church”?

    1. There’s history behind the use of “tabernacle” and “temple” instead of church. It has to do with lack of church registration under the Church of England if I recall correctly.

      I’d have to look it up.

      1. Darrell, you are looking very dapper in your photo these days.

        My mother said she preferred not to attend Baptist Temples/Tabernacles because “those were for the Jews.” She also hated calling it the “altar” for the same reason.

        1. You’d think she’d start ignoring the Old Testament, since the you know whos wrote it for their fellow you know whos.

      2. Following on from Darrell’s comments on “temples” and “tabernacles” some of the church denominations here in Northern Ireland send their kids to Sabbath School” which sounds much more Christian and *holy* than Sunday School…….

        1. Except it doesn’t mean the same thing. “Sabbath” means “seventh day,” which is Saturday, not Sunday.

        2. Oh make it stop! I knew this homeschool family when I was growing up that called Sunday “Lord’s Day” because Sunday referenced the name of a pagan god. (Apparently this was not a problem that carried over to the other days of the week.)

          My mother, meanwhile, used to wax poetic about how she liked to “think of” Sunday as the last day of the week because God washes away our sins on that day and gives us a fresh start (I have no idea where she came up with this). I pointed out to her that this idea was just too precious but was contrary to Christian tradition in the sense that Christians selected the FIRST day of the week for worship to commemorate Christ’s resurrection. She was not amused, to say the least, that I dared to poke holes in her latest pet theory.

        3. Nobody likes holes poked in their pet theories, least of all, parents.

          My son helped me fix the plumbing in our house. He knew more than I did, and he was “the boss” as far as I was concerned. He taught me a lot during the job.

          In that I consider I had some success as a parent. My son took his rightful place at the lead in an area he knew best. I was comfortable following that lead. It was a role reversal from years past, but I felt good about it. Even when he had to fix my mistakes.

          Parents should look forward to their children surpassing them.

        4. The Tunbridge Wells closed Peebs I grew up in all call Sunday, ”the Lord’s Day” in a hushed and holy voice. Bleck.

        5. I have never been much of a cook, but my daughter was married to a chef for 10 years (they are now divorced.) When I had my grandchildren for the afternoon a few days ago, they were telling me about the crab and stuff they had for dinner the previous evening, which their momma cooked. I realized then that I need to let my daughter give me cooking lessons!

      1. They may have used a spellcheck program. Since “buss” is a word meaning “kiss,” it probably wouldn’t show up as a misspelling.
        But I’m guessing the writer didn’t mean to say, “Under the direction of Bill Whitehead, the Tabernacle runs kisses each Sunday morning to North, Northwest, East, and South Knoxville.”

        1. Gives a whole new meaning to the Fundy hymn
          “The Blood of Christ
          And the Kynge Jaymes Version
          And church busses runnin’ everywhere…”

        2. Actually, per the Oxford English Dictionary, “busses” is an acceptable standardized spelling of the plural for bus, although it does note that this is primarily seen in the U.S.

        1. I don’t know about the spellcheck stuff, but I have herd that he’ll hath no furry like a women scorned.

        1. Well, that’s certainly popular interpretation. But it isn’t Scripture.

          The only place the serpent is identified as the Devil or Satan is in the last parts of the Book of Revelation. Never beforehand.

          The Scripture identified the serpent in the garden, the one who talked, as a beast of the field. Nothing more.

        2. Rtg, Dr.
          True, what you are saying about the serpent being referred to as a beast of the field, and the Devil being called “that old serpent” or something like that in Revelation.

          I was trying to make a joke about some pastors being “snakes” by being manipulative… I’m still working on my newfound craft called humor…. 😉

        3. No problem. Your humor just happened to get close to one of my pet peeves.

          I don’t really mind with you and the good people here.

          I can’t really remember when I discovered the connection between the snake and Satan had no Biblical basis until the Revelation.

          But it startled me. The effect of teaching it was really Satan in the garden was to render all understanding of that scripture up to when John wrote erroneous. When I questioned why God would allow the true meaning of Scripture to be hidden by the plain words of it, I was told that “Scripture interprets Scripture” so later Scripture thousands of years after the first placed the right interpretation.

          I objected that crawling in the dust was not an appropriate punishment for the Devil and was referred to the so-called ProtoEvangelium (I hope I spelled that right) where the “seed of the woman” would crush the seed of the serpent. Not *that* serpent, mind you.

          Oh, and in the story, the snake told the truth and God lied. They became as gods, knowing good and evil (God said so to … Somebody). They didn’t die in the very day they ate the forbidden fruit as God had promised. “Spiritual death” was an unknown concept and has nothing to do with the passage.

          Since then (well, maybe before) I was on the lookout for other interpretations that didn’t fit.

        4. Rtg, I don’t mind if you point out discrepancies like that. I actually prefer that you or anyone here does. That’s what keeps me coming back. It’s fun to laugh at my past, but not quite as fun if someone shows me that I may still be carrying some of the errors with me. But I’m no better unless challenged to read the scriptures again without the spin I have been raised in. I was a dispensationalist. Now, I am not so sure what I am. But I am learning from some who are in a much older denomination that seems (in my view) to line up with the historical church much better than dispensationalists do. Not to mention that they don’t ever seem to have to tell me that the Bible isn’t really saying what it is saying. Re: the serpent was really the devil, “Repent and be baptized” means “repent”, etc.
          I have also begun lessons in reading Koine Greek. God help me!

        5. “I objected that crawling in the dust was not an appropriate punishment for the Devil …”

          In “The Book of Genesis Illustrated by R. Crumb” (which I recommend), Crumb draws the Serpent as having legs in the garden. It makes sense: If crawling on the ground was his punishment, it follows that the Serpent did not crawl on the ground before that judgment was pronounced (Genesis is silent on the number of the Serpent’s legs, if any).

          http://www.amazon.com/The-Book-Genesis-Illustrated-Crumb/dp/0393061027

          (It amuses me that the cover of Crumb’s book has a disclaimer, “Adult supervision recommended for minors,” since the book is a word-for-word rendition of Genesis, with nothing added or subtracted.)

        6. Appropriate punishment for the serpent–maybe. Though the serpent did tell the truth and God did lie! But not appropriate punishment for Satan, if, as all too many have said, he used or inhabited the body of the serpent to do his dastardly deed.

          IF Satan was responsible for the Garden Incident, then God failed to punish him. But in the Scripture we have a distressing list of “judgements” that fall hardest on the innocent.

        7. My own hunch is that the business about the Serpent and the Tree of Knowledge is, like so much else in the OT, a treatment (mythological, in this case) of the rivalry between the God of the Hebrews and and the multitude of other Middle Eastern deities. We do know that there were cults in the region that revered snakes and that snakes were associated with wisdom, knowledge, and cleverness (as in, “… be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves”).

        8. I tend to agree that many of these things should be allegorized.

          I ask, “How would a person hearing this for the first time have understood it?” The Hebrews were not interested in science. Their cosmology was a world formed from the Waters of Chaos that threatened just past the firmament. They had come out of Egypt and were having to learn about their God. They had no Scriptures. Almost no one could read. Their basic need was to survive.

          What would they relate to? The Egyptian creation story had humans created by accident and without thought, from the tears of a god. The Babylonian creation story, which they would have heard, was that the gods created man as slaves to tend their garden. But man escaped. In either case, the gods were not concerned with the welfare of man. They were much more interested in fighting among themselves. The disasters that happened in life were the unseen conflicts between minor deities. People suffered by being in the line of fire.

          What the children of Israel needed was a different point of view.

          So one of the creation stories showed God making man as a deliberate act. Man was no accident, no slave, but God’s best work from his own hands. The Potter formed man, breathed into him His own breath, made a place for him to live, and even provided a mate.

          Man was His Child. Everything was provided.

          Children were expected to obey their parents. God was like every parent, in that He over-stressed consequences of certain actions. Every person remembered parents saying, “If you do such and such I will kill you! I’ll whoop you within an inch of your life,” and so on. Fear has always been a tool for parents to control their children.

          And each person remembered the times they had disobeyed. Finally, when it was clear they were going to heed their own counsel instead of their parents, they were sent out to live life on their own. Disobedience had a price, but for parents it wasn’t death. It was having to learn the hard way out in the world.

          So the Garden Story resonated. Man disobeyed his Parent, and the consequences had never been death–what parent would do such a thing to his child? No, it was time for them to take responsibility for themselves and learn about life on their own.

          But God was still the Parent. He had made man deliberately. Man was no accident, no slave. The world belonged to them. There were no demigods to fear. No squabbling deities.

        9. Christians (not just fundies) usually get it bass-ackwards. Harmless as serpents and wise as doves.

        10. An irreducible problem in reading the Bible as moral instruction (rather than as nothing more than a collection of myths) is that so many of the punishments and rewards meted out seem, at least to us moderns, grossly unfair or wildly disproportionate. To some extent, we can explain or theorize some of it, but our attempts fall short of reconciling all of it.

  7. I can’t even figure out what it is they’re trying to say with that message. Even if I accept the premise are they saying treating people equally is sin? It just perpetuates the “you’re not like me so you’re wrong” mentality.

      1. My initial thought was that this was racially motivated. But thinking some more about it, it very well may be about yucky gay marriage.
        Either way there is no justification. Just another stupid church sign with a hateful ignorant message by people who claim to be better than everyone else.

        1. Scorpio, as a women, my first thought was that they were speaking to women. You know, get back to the kitchen and have more babies. They have created a sign that is equal opportunity in it’s offensiveness.

        2. I initially thought women too. Darn those suffragettes — demanding the right to vote, as if anyone wants to hear a mere woman’s opinion.

      2. This Tabernacle reminds me of my fellow Texan, state Rep. Tony Tinderholt, who is taking extraordinary action to try to block the marriage of two Austin women, one of whom has late-stage ovarian cancer.

        Tinderholt, 44, is currently on his fifth marriage, and is apparently incensed at the suggestion that the two women’s marriage might be as valid as any of his.

        http://www.star-telegram.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/bud-kennedy/article11593922.html

        1. Of course he is. The sanctity of his 5 marriages are all offended by the cancer patients! That’s infinitely more moral outrage of people following the Pauline instruction to not marry.

      3. If they wanted to attack gay marriage there is always the infinitely more whitty: “It’s Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.” That one always gets some laffs and has been instrmental in helping millions of people see the light on the gay marriage issue.

      4. Yeah. They can’t directly scream “FAG! FAG! FAAAAG!” so they phrase it in a way that sounds like their Ku Klux forefathers when the subject was White Supremacy.

        In the Former Confederate States yet, where race is still a REALLY touchy subject.

        Way to go, genius.

        1. Headless Unicorn Guy, FAG! FAG! FAAAAG! would make for an honest church sign at least! I bet they could get some conversation going with the neighbours with it, too!

  8. Perhaps it’s a not so subtle message that the sheeple don’t deserve all the perks, benefits, rights and demands of the MOG. Some of us are more equal than others.

    1. Before we come down too hard on Knoxville Baptist Tabernale, we should probably consider the unintended consequences that may result from defying authority in order to secure one’s rights. To help us understand these consequences, it might be helpful to quote, in context, the words of a well-known rebel, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness…”

        1. Haha, Tabernac? For a shocked moment there Ben, I thought you were swearing. It doesn’t get much worse than that in Québécois.

        2. MiriamD, you have previously mentioned that you live in Ontario. Since you also speak French, may I ask if you live near the border with Quebec.

          P.S. I will make a point of not taking the name of the tabernacle in vain.

        3. Nope I do not live near Quebec. I married into a Northern Ontario Francophone family. It was learn to speak French or sit all by myself in the corner every time the family got together. Poutine is delicious stuff but a little hard on the arteries…

      1. Hmmm. The unintended consequences of demanding our rights.

        The U.S. became a nation. And the march toward justice and equity that began with the Magna Carta has continued. Doctrines as the Divine Right of Kings have been swept away. People have opportunities for education. Slavery is no longer considered a legitimate social construct.

        I’d say those unintended consequences are okay. Having to really think about morality for ourselves instead of just doing what we’ve always done and thinking what we’ve always thought is a Good Thing.

        The consequences of not demanding our rights is having the world in chains.

        1. When I watched a TV show about King Henry VIII, I was struck by how much power he had and how people had to bow to his whims or demands simply because he was the king. There was no freedom of conscience: if you wanted to exercise such freedom, you’d probably end up dead.

          I’m so so glad I don’t Live in a world where one man would have that type of control over me.

        2. I liked the BBC series on Henry VIII so much I bought it. Lots of beautiful women and beheadings of men.

      2. A ‘well-known rebel’ who had his own dark side regarding his animate property.

        Though actually I cut weird church signs some slack. Think about the poor schmuck who’s in charge of the sign. Having to come up with a different profound Spiritual one-liner Twitter Tweet every week, week in, week out; after a while you run out of the good ones and that’s when hilarity ensues.

  9. “Be careful when you demand your equal rights that you don’t hurt others around you. You’ve got to consider everyone around you,” he said.

    Ah huh. That’s right, slaves. Demanding to be free hurts your master since he won’t be able to order you around.

    Women, demanding to be paid the same as men for doing the same work hurts your employer’s profit margins!

    LGBT people, your demands to be able to marry, to even exist without persecution hurts the feelings of superiority of religious bigots. Why should they have to treat you right? Jesus’ command to love your neighbor as yourself didn’t include you!

    You have to admit it, that is an ugly, self-centered statement. Please, people! Be content with our disgraceful treatment of you!

    Nothing to misunderstand here! People are upset because they understand it all too well.

  10. First-time poster. I just discovered this site a few weeks ago, and I love it. It’s such a relief to know I’m not the only person recovering from a fundy background.
    I remember my former pastor saying more than once, “The only right a Christian has is to serve God.” Um, OK…the nonsense that he spewed on a regular basis was unreal.

      1. Um, no. While there are lots of “rights” that are not actually rights – FDR’s four freedoms come to mind – God did give us several more than the right to serve him. Or to actually use Scripture, the right to be called the sons of God. Reading the second 5 Commandments, we have been given a right to be free of aggression against our property. For instance, if God prohibits stealing, then He has given us a right not to be stolen from.

        1. Funny that right didn’t belong to the Canaanites.

          How would you define “real” rights? How would you distinguish and extinguish those that aren’t?

          And property rights even for the Israelites were not absolute. There were lots of restrictions.

        2. I completely agree with you, Joshua. The pastor I grew up under was a real clown. Most of what he “preached” was regurgitated from other pastors. I have finally realized that he had no clue what he was talking about. Ever. Most of the time I left church wondering what the heck I just heard. He never made sense. And, I don’t think he has any clue about the Bible or God.
          I’m still trying to deprogram.

    1. Still better than the one I kept hearing on Christianese radio, always delivered by this one radio preacher at high volume:
      “YOUR ONLY ‘RIGHT’ IS TO DESERVE ETERNAL HELL!!!!!!

        1. No, no. Though he paid for the gift you have to receive it a certain way. Blow that and you don’t get it.

          For God so loved the world that Ge gave his only begotten son, that whosoever doesn’t believe in Him will be tortured for eternity in a lake of fire. Yes, He loves you THAT much!

      1. Oh my! That is much worse than what I had to listen to. That doesn’t surprise me, though. Fundies are all hellfire and damnation; no love or grace.

  11. Fundys: Never missing a chance to ignore context in order to make a point. Lucifer wanting to be equal with God is a little different than diverse humans expecting to be treated equally.

  12. Don’t move pastor tony!! there appears to be a small furry rodent asleep on your head!!

    Somebody needs to be honest with that man about that decision.

    1. From one interpretive position, I suppose. The Fundamentalist Position, particularly. But to make the flat claim of it being “Biblical” — well, …

      Luke: Ben! Why didn’t you tell me? You told me that Darth Vader betrayed and murdered my father.
      Obi-Wan: Your father… was seduced by the Dark Side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and “became” Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true… from a certain point of view.
      Luke: A certain point of view?
      Obi-Wan: Luke, you’re going to find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.

      I would have completely agreed with you some years back. My POV has changed, however. I do not find Fundamentalism particularly “biblical” any more.

      1. I think the reference is to Isaiah 14. The passage actually relates to the King of Babylon, but the mocking hyperbole has been interpreted as being a revelation about Lucifer. “I will be like the Most High” is an included statement.

        One could stretch the point to claim this is a demand for equal rights. If you stretch it beyond recognition. It could, more reasonably, be considered an expression of hubris, that the king felt he had the very power of a god among mere mortals.

        The reason the passage is seized upon as a reference to Satan is that there are precious few passages about him. But the passage itself tells the tale, and reading it without the supernatural baggage we want to impose on it makes better sense.

        1. Yep. Almost every passage about Satan in the OT is actually about someone else. But really, faced with (some very well founded) arguments from Marcion, etc., the early church decided that the only way to fit the OT into the Christian canon and meta-narrative was to interpret it figuratively. This is not without merit – Jesus himself supposedly explained the law and the prophets as referring to him, so I don’t have a problem with people going beyond what the text actually says. I just want them to be honest about it.

      1. Uhhh, I don’t know about that.

        Before your head explodes, hear me out.

        You believe in what you believe about God. But you have no way to verify if what you believe about God is actually so. Frankly, all religious experience is belief in believing.

        How well do you know the Scripture? Really? Are you absolutely certain everything you believe is so? If you were to be shown to be wrong about any aspect of your belief, what would you do? Is reality as important as faith? In what way?

        In your own way you have set yourself up as the arbiter of right and wrong, truth and error, good and evil. You have done it for yourself. You choose to believe thus and such, and choose not to believe something else.

        That doesn’t make you equal with God. But it is close enough. You choose not to believe the Quran. You choose to believe what you think you know about the Bible in some ways, not in others.

        In other words, absent meeting God in Person, getting direct revelation, viewing miracles and seeing for yourself all of God’s actions of creation, you are in the position of the grown man who has left the Father’s house without having ever really met your Parent, left the schoolmaster, and stand in the world having to make your own decisions–as Paul described in Galatians!

        It is tough having to make decisions for yourself and others. But you do. You choose whether to deal to others good or bad. Because you have eaten of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. And as God said, “Behold, the man has become like us, knowing good and evil.”

        This isn’t arrogance. It is reality. It is taking responsibility for one’s self.

        1. I have never seen making decisions for myself as being a God-like prerogative. Perhaps it’s fundamentalist training that makes some people see it that way.

  13. Setting fundies aside, this is a textbook example, albeit an exaggeration of the norm, of why I think church signs like such are such a ridiculous idea. Put the freakin’ service times up there and move along and stop trying to put up some sort of catchy one liner thinking it is going to save anyone. Too often, they sound idiotic.

    I was in a church once that was on a deep decline? The response? Let’s invest 20k in a super fancy LED sign, cause all the people will oooh and ahhh and come join the church. Did it work? Need I answer?

    Frankly, its evangelistic laziness. I’ll throw my idea up on a sign and sit in my recliner instead of volunteering at the homeless shelter or providing a real community service and gaining a real platform for someone to hear what I’ve got to say.

    You’ve got to love the first world problems and solutions of American churches. I’m sure Pastor Saeed is sitting in his Iranian cell thinking about what he’s going to put up on next week’s smart aleck sign.

    1. I was in a church once that was on a deep decline? The response? Let’s invest 20k in a super fancy LED sign, cause all the people will oooh and ahhh and come join the church. Did it work? Need I answer?

      BUT ALL THOSE SILICON VALLEY IPO STARTUPS ARE DOING IT!

  14. The pastor stated that they were not targeting a specific group and I believe this is probably true. The statement is vague enough that it can target all of the groups that fundies have preached against having equal rights over the years including Blacks, women, gays, lesbians, lgbt, illegal aliens, legal aliens, Muslims, Catholics, children, atheists, liberals. and many more. Even within the church there is a hierarchy with people that don’t attend regularly on the bottom, then Sunday morning only crowd, then Wednesday night attenders, then leaders, deacons, and finally the pastor on top with the most rights. I have heard pastors preach that members that only attend often enough to maintain their membership shouldn’t be allowed to vote at meetings.

    After awhile it becomes apparent that if fundies had their way they would implement some type if “fundy” law just as abusive as any sharia law and it round be admistered through the local church. The pastor, of course, would have all authority and they think that would make America a “godly” country.

    1. Fundies trying to put their own form of sharia law into effect is exactly what is happening in the USA.
      I find it an odd thing–most fundies I know are hyper patriotic. USAmerican freedom and patriotism is a Christian value to them. They complain their freedoms are being taken away by the liberal heathens. And yet they would deny any rights and freedom to those who they disagree with politically or religiously. They label those Christians who read the Bible differently than they as heretics and wolves in sheep’s clothing–and pretty much excommunicate them. Somehow they believe if they don’t consider them to be true Christians that silences them. And for the nation, they would deny the right for people to be free. If they had their way, prohibition would be the law of the land–so people would not have the freedom to choose to “sin” or not. People would not have the freedom to live out who they truly are in the nation. Anything they consider to be a sin would be outlawed–taking away people’s freedom. Their intellect is truly dizzying.

      1. I read a very interesting blog post recently about ”us” and ”them” and how that is really how most fundy groups deal with people they don’t agree with. They insist on complete compliance if a person wishes to stay ”us”, if they don’t get the compliance, the person becomes ”them.” Problem solved, for the group. They really don’t care what becomes of the person once they have become, ”them.”

        1. That’s not exactly true that they don’t care what happens to you. Once you are a “them” then anything “bad” that you do or happens to you is proof that you rebellious and have a bitter spirit. Now your a sermon illustration to keep others in line through fear and intimidation. So yea, they care. They WANT bad things to happen to you.

        2. I have had that experience. To a certain group I became a nobody, a zero. It hurts. Then I realised that my identity in Christ did not depend on what this group – or any group – thought of me. So stuff them.

        3. To my family and the Peebs, I am ”them”, the apostate, the one who put her hand to the plow and turned back. I was, according to them, ”in the Place” I had the blessing of truth and I gave it all up. They are so proud of their narrowness and don’t realize or care that they are discarding people that God loves. Yeah, stuff them

      2. I think most of Sharia law is pretty agreeable. It’s not all honor killings and such. Since there isn’t really a compendium of what Sharia law is, it’s difficult to say either way, but the Muslim standards of restorative justice and corporal punishment is a lot more effective than sticking people into giant cages for the rest of their life while providing nothing to the victim.

  15. What stands out to me about their website is not so much what is there as what is not there. If I were an unsaved person who was searching for answers I would see nothing on Knoxville Baptist Church’s website that would appeal to me. I see nothing that would make me feel I was loved, welcome or accepted by them or their God. All I see on their website is them talking about themselves.

    1. Jason B, you are not their intended audience. They don’t want you to come to their church or be part of their ministry. You are too much of a free thinking person. Their website appeals to fundamentalist mind sets. Only those who are going to prop up their belief system and the political system of that church are going to be enticed by the website.

    2. the thing that turned me off most about their website was the 9:30 AM soul winning on Saturday. Saturday is the one day I can sleep in or slouch around in my pajamas for a while and God forbid someone come to my door before noon. That is just wrong.

      1. I know of one guy who had a unique way of dealing with unwanted visits from JWs. His house was a the end of a long lane, so it was private but he could see the JWs coming. When they reached his front door he was ready for them. He opened the door naked, holding a large jar of Vaseline. He was somewhat disappointed the didn’t stay for a theological discussion, but he was never bothered again. Would that work with Fundies. I wish I had the nerve to try it myself.

        1. I have a friend who keeps all and sundry religious pamphlets she comes across in a box by the door to hand to JWs when they show up. Some of the stuff she gives them has given all who know her many laughs thinking of the kind of person the JWs must think live in that house.
          If you do ever get up the nerve to try the Vaseline approach remember, if you don’t get in on camera it didn’t happen.

        2. I guess the guy was lucky not to be reported for Indecent Exposure or something…. but his house was well hidden from public view and I think the visitors were too unnerved. Where I am the front door opens onto a fairly busy street, so I might not get away with it. Pity.

        3. Maybe I could appear at the door in a Borat-style “mankini” holding a Vaseline jar in one hand and maybe a whip in the other…. would that have the desired effect on Fundy visitors? (or would it just give me a reputation that would be hard to shake off?)

        4. Jay, sometime we’ll have to talk about the difference between opening a door naked and opening a naked door.

          English is an analytic language.

        5. My method is kind of the opposite. A JW asked me if I’d heard of a particular verse, so I took off my dish gloves, bustled over to my shelf of Bibles, and started pulling out assorted translations and enthusiastically talking about the passage. He could only take about 10 minutes of it for some reason.

        6. Here is what I did. I asked, “You have your Bible, right?” I asked, knowing the JWs are as rabid about their New World Translation as many IFBs are about the KJV.

          Then I asked them to look up Proverbs 30:4 and read it.

          Here it is in the ESV.
          Proverbs 30:4.
          Who has ascended to heaven and come down?
          Who has gathered the wind in his fists?
          Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment?
          Who has established all the ends of the earth?
          What is his name, and what is his son’s name?
          Surely you know!

          Here it is in the New World Translation.

          4 Who has ascended to heaven and then descended?+
          Who has gathered the wind in the palms of both hands?
          Who has wrapped up the waters in his garment?+
          Who has established* all the ends of the earth?+
          What is his name and the name of his son—if you know?

          The lady freaked out. God has a son!

        1. God so loved the WORLD. Not a select few.

          And Jesus ” came not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved by Him.”

          Funny how those who hold up John 3:16 signs never hold up John 3:17 signs.

      1. Jay I’m still not sure what your point was. 16 says “whoever believes in him”. 17 says “that the world might be saved”. Are you interpreting this as the entire world would believe in him? Otherwise, there would be some who don’t believe in him who are not saved.

        the Admiral

  16. I discovered this site about two weeks ago and I have found it to be the Pool of Bethesda for Ex-Fundies. I must duly note that as a former member of the Church of Christ, I probably only qualify as Ex-Fundie Lite but I can certainly relate to the authoritarianism and legalism that SFL exposes. One does not have to spend much time on the site before one senses a true spirit of community and sharing among those who post regularly and as an added bonus, it’s frequently hilarious. Brother and Sisters, you’re doing the Lord’s Work here, even if it’s not in Jacobean English.

    1. Thou wilt find that several of us are visited by the spirit of inspiration from time to time and doth speaketh (typeth) with the nonsensical verb endings and antiquated pronouns so that ye all may knowest that we exhibiteth all that pertaineth to godliness.

      1. Verily, verily I say unto thee, he that goeth to Stuff Fundies Like shall have his chain yanked. And greater yanks than these will he pull on others. For mirth in the heart overcometh sadness, and laughter sootheth grief.

    2. Thou hast mentioned the many sisters on the site, but thou makest mention of only one brother. Of which of our brethren dost thou speak? Verily the curiosity is great.

      Thou didst not make mention of the grammarians which inhabit the site and which make great mirth over any minor mistakes. The most mistaken one appears to be called George, for which reason, I know not.

  17. As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Continue in my love. If you keep my commandments you will abide in my love. Love one another as I have loved you. – Jesus

    1. Funny. These guys never mention that Moses was married to a black girl. Interracial marriage! And God struck Miriam (not MiriamD) with leprosy because she criticized her brother about it.

  18. Well then, I guess I doth be on the wrong side (hint hint)…what with not wanting to be demeaned all through life by Fundy men or by ridiculous religious bravada. Maybe my goals are set too high for a woman. Hmmm? Guess I should just stick to goofing off with the heathen boys in the back pew lol oh well, can’t win ’em all.

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