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Wednesday, October 04, 2006

So Much For Tolerance!

I recently commented on a blog of a dear friend’s sister who was writing about her “de-conversion” from “christianity”. It is amazing to me that those who adhere to a belief strictly in a “gospel” of the good works of Christ and “humanitarian chrisitianity” while preaching tolerance and “being nice”, are some of the meanest and most intolerant people I have come across when they are challenged with opposing views. See for yourself- read the posts here (scroll down to the post for the 27th of September, "On not being a Christian" and previous posts on the subject, as well as comments) and see my comment below (which was rudely deleted so no one would have a clue that I was actually not the demon I was made out to be by her response!) Her comment back to me (currently viewable in the comments of the post, but may be deleted at any time) was, “Mrs. H - Do not EVER cross the cyber threshhold onto this blog again. EVER.” When asked “who is Mrs. H”, she wrote, “Someone who will lose this url if she has any sense (and her husband too).”

She pulled the same stunt with my husband last year, as he documented here (most of the details are in the posts he links to, one of which has conveniently been deleted). As I’ve said before, no matter how nicely and respectfully you present the truth to someone who doesn’t want to hear it, the truth hurts!!

Here was my comment:

Let me start by saying that I appreciate your honesty, openness, and genuiness. It is nice to see someone admit that there are non-negotiable beliefs that are required to be a Christian, and to see you admit that there are “Christians” who only believe and practice the humanitarian aspects of who Christ was.

I am wondering what you think of this verse in light of your comment that the gospel message “doesn’t make sense” to you. “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. (1 Corinthians 1: 18-20)

Here is an example that may help it to make more sense to you:

What do you value more than anything on this Earth? Your own life? Maybe. The life of your child? Definitely. God loved us so much that to reconcile us to Him He came to Earth and sent His precious only Son to be tortured, mocked and crucified to take the punishment for our sins when we repent and trust in Christ. He loves you so much, Jennifer, even when you turn away from Him, that He died for you to have eternal life when you believe in Him. I know you already know all this, but it’s one thing to have head knowledge, and another thing entirely to have that knowledge applied to your heart. There is no hope apart from Jesus Christ. There’s no other path that leads to God apart from Christ. “Humanitarian ‘christians’” are not saved will not be in heaven because there is not one who does good, no, not one. Our works can’t save us, only Jesus’ blood can.

It saddens me to see your friends simply giving you a pat on the back as you “bravely” deny the only source of salvation- Jesus Christ. I know your sister loves and cares for you and is praying for you, and I am, too.


I hope you don’t take offense to this, but what makes you think you were ever really “Christian” in the first place? Did you ever have a deep and personal relationship with Jesus Christ? If you say yes, then you are admittedly denying the Lord. I’m not even sure if this is possible, since this is blasphemy of the Spirit. If you say “no” or “I’m not sure” (which probably means you didn’t), then you never really “de-converted” from anything, because you never had a regeneration or rebirth experience in the first place. I am praying you will come to know the Lord as you search for answers.

(End of comment)

My husband also commented, with this simple word:

“Thank you for your intellectual honesty, Jennifer. It is refreshing. I will pray for you as you continue on your journey.”

She deleted that as well.

It’s no coincidence that I heard a sermon this week by Alistair Begg where he said, “Don’t be surprised when you stand firm on the word of God and boldly proclaim the truth that people will say to you, ‘Who do you think you are?! You arrogant…’

Remember Jesus’ words: “If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. He who hates me hates my Father also. If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would have no sin; but now they have seen and also hated both Me and My Father. But this happened that the word might be fulfilled which is written in their law, ‘They hated Me without a cause.’” (John 15:18-24)

16 Comments:

  • I was absolutely appalled at the hatred towards you and your husband. I saw comments from her previously where she welcomed and rejoiced in having "differing opinions" to contribute on her blog...however, none were all that different..by that I mean, no one spoke to her lovingly-yet honestly, like you did. THAT is why you were deleted.

    I apologize, sincerely for having mentioned to you that I was saddened by her "de-conversion" post. It was laying heavily on my heart, and I had been saddened by her posts and the pats on the back for denying Christ-I told you about it, then you got flamed. I apologize.

    It's her blog, and she has the right to comment any way she chooses. However, it is common decency and respect (that these compassionate people only seem to have for their own friends) to leave the comment of the poster that you do not agree with present for people to read while you attack them, otherwise, no one has any idea what was said.

    I am glad you posted it here, as your love, compassion and concern was evident..so was her hatred, and the gossiping hatred of others, towards you, your husband and the truth.

    P.S. I had to create another screename because I can't post now that I have switched to beta...eyeroll...

    By Blogger Rightthinker2, at 10/04/2006 04:30:00 PM  

  • Be careful about drawing major conclusions, though. I've never been to any site where flame wars didn't develop from time to time. I've seen those on the left do it and those on the right. I've seen it happen in debates about Shaq versus Kobe. Everyone always believes the other side is worse, uglier and more rude. Everyone.

    By Blogger Mark, at 10/04/2006 07:27:00 PM  

  • Yes, Mark, I agree that there are two sides to every story. A right one and a wrong one...

    By Blogger mrshammer, at 10/05/2006 12:43:00 PM  

  • Let me clarify for anyone reading both this post and the links provided. First of all, the ONLY reason I made this current post is because MY COMMENT WAS DELETED from Jennifer's blog, and I wanted others to see that my comment was not rude or hateful, and I did not deserve the attack I received in return. My post here is not an attack, as anyone reading it can see, and I truly resent my new title of "Nothing" and the way I am being treated. I simply wanted my words to be heard so that readers of both blogs (which I know there are some) will see this for what it is.
    I appreciate the verses Jennifer used on her blog, and I will certainly be "shaking the dust off my feet" and moving on, even though this was the very first (and last!) comment I have ever made on her blog! You'd think I'd been pestering her for months the way she reacted. I spent a long while composing my comment to make it as loving and unoffensive as possible, while still being truthful- that's the irony of it. I am so sorry Anna, if I have made this very uncomfortable for you. I never should have commented on Jennifer's blog. Little did I know! You can't reach those who have no desire to hear the truth- she is exactly right. I am done commenting and reading blogs from this circle of ladies. Frankly, they are scary and I lose sleep over this- it's not healthy for me!
    My heart aches for those who are so blind to the truth, who are so opposed to the gospel, and lost in their sin. I was once there- but thank the Lord He saved me even though I don't deserve it!
    I don't know what else to say except that I'm very sorry to anyone who misconstrued my tone, intentions or misunderstood my point in posting this blog. I never meant to offend anyone or come across as pointing a judgmental finger or give the impression that I am perfect while others are "heathen". I am far from it, and while I do belive it is a Christians job to be salt and light, it is impossible to be that to those who choose to be in darkness and hate the light of God's word. It is never my place to point a haughty finger of condmenation at anyone while basking in an attitude of "self-righteousness"- and that is NOT what I am doing here. It is our place as Christians to "judge righteous judgment" and alarm people as to their need for a Saviour and question and gently and lovingly correct those who claim to be Christians yet have seriously flawed ideas of what that means. We must make others aware of those who proclaim Christ with their lips, and then live a life contrary to His word that those people are indeed not Christians and don't know the Lord, otherwise we are in danger of being decieved and allowing others to fall into a trap of deception, as well. God is the Judge, and He will certainly have the last word, but we should and must boldly proclaim the Bible's truths and lead others to a relationship with the one true God through Jesus Christ! We must point out to the lost WHY they need to be saved (they are sinners) and what Christ did to save them, or we are not doing our jobs as Christians. Sometimes, it's not a pretty sight and you don't get the intended result (as in this case!) but seeds of truth are always planted and it's in the Lord's hands. And, that's where I'll leave it, because I am DONE!
    Again, I never would have dedicated a whole post to this subject had my comment not been deleted.

    By Blogger mrshammer, at 10/05/2006 01:22:00 PM  

  • As I read this post, and compare it to the response on that person's blog, I am struck by the absence of attack here.

    Mrs. H posted what she commented (and what I did), that those comments were deleted, and quoted the nasty comments she received in reply. The only thing that could have possibly been construed as an attack was that she was "mean and intolerant" - which I do not think are unreasonable descriptives for the acts described. Should I ever delete comments because they differ from my opinion (or even differ from fact) and tell someone never to come back again "EVER" "if they have any sense", I would expect to be called much worse.

    I identified that person as an non-Christian and God hater over a year ago in emails to her as I tried to work out our previous discussion as well as in emails to another blog friend. I never publicly posted that level of "attack" because I wasn't sure it was appropriate.

    Apparently it may not have been appropriate, but it was certainly true. Such a thing can only be proven by the conduct of the actor in question. I know that many say that we can't discern a person's heart by their words, that somehow a person's "fruit" does not include their words. I, and Jesus Christ, disagree:

    "Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad, for the tree is known by its fruit. You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned."
    (Mt 12:33-37)

    Thanks be to God that my "good treasure" is not my own, but of Him, in Him, and by Him. I am not a good person, but the Christ within me is responsible for every good thing I think, say or do. The bad things are mine. It is everlasting grace that He has justified me through his blood!

    By Blogger Hammertime, at 10/05/2006 01:58:00 PM  

  • My comment before was based on just skimming what you wrote. I simply wanted to warn you not to take one person's actions as "proof" of an entire group of people.

    However, now that I've read everything more carefully and looked at the original site I have to point something out. You said:

    I hope you don’t take offense to this, but what makes you think you were ever really “Christian” in the first place? Did you ever have a deep and personal relationship with Jesus Christ? If you say yes, then you are admittedly denying the Lord. I’m not even sure if this is possible, since this is blasphemy of the Spirit. If you say “no” or “I’m not sure” (which probably means you didn’t), then you never really “de-converted” from anything, because you never had a regeneration or rebirth experience in the first place.

    Let me translate how that comes across to the person you are talking to you. You basically just said:

    Jennifer, you are a liar

    I understand why you wrote what you did and understand why your world view requires you write it the way you did, but that doesn't change the how it will come across.

    Ultimately, what you wrote doesn't come across as someone sharing a view but as someone who has absolute knowledge. (Which makes sense as that is what you actually believe.) That will tend to be considered arrogant and condescending.

    By Blogger Mark, at 10/05/2006 08:03:00 PM  

  • Mark,
    I understand that what I wrote to Jennifer could appear arrogant and condescending- why do you think I mentioned the sermon by Alistair Begg in my post? This is a typical reply so that instead of actually reading what I had to say and taking it to heart, people can feel justified to disregard it and call it "arrogant". If you would read my previous comment here, you can see that isn't my attitude and I am sincerely concerned for Jennifer's soul and those of the commenters (for the most part) on her blog. The thing I appreciate about Jennifer (and you) is that you don't claim to be Christian and present a distorted picture of what that means. She acknowledges exactly what it means to truly be Christian, but admits that she chooses to deny it. I appreciate intellectual honesty like that and don't understand those who call themselves Christians, yet completely deny the Biblical gospel. What is the point of even calling yourself a Christian, then?
    For example, here's a comment from Jennifer's blog:

    The christianity characterized by classic atonement theology is not the christianity I practice. There are other interpretations of the faith that I find liberating (like liberation, feminist and queer theology).

    I am christian but I certainly don't believe most of what might be labeled orthodox theology (substitutionary atonement, salavation through Jesus only, virgin birth, resurrection of the body, hell, etc.).
    All this said, I think it is healthy and good to leave christianity. Its triumphalistic faith claims have hurt and oppressed people for 2000 years!
    I just want to keep christianity open to multiple interpretations.


    Now come on, John and others who attest that we cannot determine who is and who is not a Christian by what they say, or that we can never judge (determine) who is or is not a Christian. Please, give me a break!

    Mark, you interpreted what I said to Jennifer (the part you italicized) as "You are a liar", but what it really says is this: Jennifer, you have deceived yourself into believing you were once something that you never were! You can't be a liar if you don't even realize you weren't what you thought you were! The only way she could be a liar in this case is if she actually knew she was never a Christian, but claimed to be.

    This is one of the reasons I say that we need to point out to those who claim they are Christians but clearly aren't that their seriously flawed theology is contrary to Christianity. Some may not even realize that they are in need of salvation if they think they are already heaven bound.

    Thanks for reading and for your input, Mark!

    By Blogger mrshammer, at 10/05/2006 08:43:00 PM  

  • The world hates you because you're psycho.

    By Blogger truechristian, at 10/06/2006 10:26:00 AM  

  • Hey, "Truechristian",
    If you're going to make such a rude comment, at least don't hide- having no profile to go with that comment makes you look like the "psycho" here. That's fine- call me what you like. Jesus was called a "psycho" and worse, too. We can expect to be called names when we seek to imitate and proclaim Him.
    Now, that's an "obnoxious" comment which deserves to be deleted, but I'll let it speak for itself because I don't think deleting things that oppose, contradict or argue my points should be hidden.

    By Blogger mrshammer, at 10/06/2006 11:48:00 AM  

  • "truechristian" was also created today. It's safe to say we know what circle they came from...

    By Blogger Hammertime, at 10/06/2006 12:00:00 PM  

  • Oh, I see... I told you they were scary! Why do that kind of stuff in the darkness? This sounds like my 11 year old son when I say this, but really: "if you have something to say, say it to my face!" Meaning, don't hide behind a fake profile and username. That is so childish and uncalled for.

    By Blogger mrshammer, at 10/06/2006 12:15:00 PM  

  • It's cowardice, darling, pure and simple. Back to studying Hebrew for me!

    By Blogger Hammertime, at 10/06/2006 12:22:00 PM  

  • Hi Mrs Hammer,
    The truth is always going to be offensive..the darkness hates the light.I read nothing mean or offensive in your writings,but no matter how kindly we state the truth it will always offend. Besides if you were blending in with the world and compromising the truth just to avoid stepping on worldy toes,then I would be worried.
    You and Mr Hammer are doing great...I apreciate your blog and the fact that it isn't "wishy-washy",meaning you present the truth as the truth.Keep up the good blogging!
    Blessings,
    Tina
    PS..Alistair Begg is great..love to listen to him too.

    By Blogger Skooter, at 10/06/2006 12:52:00 PM  

  • There is a built in oxymoron to the liberal concept of being intolerant of intolerance. Those who cannot see the internal conflict are powerless to actually help the cause; instead they just promote hate of another type. This reminds me of something David Brin posted at his blog recently:

    For many years I have spiced up some speeches (about memes) with the notion that we must “CRUSH every other worldview that does not preach tolerance!” It gets a laugh plus applause... and I say “those of you who ONLY applauded, without laughing at the irony -- a deeply cautionary irony -- aren’t qualified to wage this holy war. You just don’t get it. In fact, your eager help may only ensure our eventual defeat. The way to truly crush intolerance is the way parents deal with the hysterics of small children. By taking the small hammer-blows, absorbing the tantrum, firmly disallowing any larger harm, and wrapping the frenetic soul in an embrace of patient confidence.

    “Calm down. The only way to attain freedom of action is if you learn not to hate.”"


    Jennifer doesn't get it; "truechristian" really doesn't get it.

    By Blogger Mark, at 10/07/2006 03:47:00 AM  

  • Mrs. Hammer,

    Not to go around in circles too much, I really did understand what you meant (and said so, I thought) but wanted to point out how it comes across. Every statement has two meanings, the one the speaker intends and the one the listener receives. It takes great effort on both parties to keep those two as close together as possible.

    ...you don't claim to be Christian and present a distorted picture of what that means

    True, but realize this has many layers and is actually more complex than stated. I do claim that I used to be a Christian, or at least thought I was. You and your husband believe it is not possible that I ever was. At one level this feels like being called a liar but I actually don't have a problem with that because ultimately I agree.

    Because being a true Christian fundamentally requires that true Christians are actually correct. And if I thought true Christians were correct, I'd (still) be one.

    In other words, I don't think you are a true Christian either. Because nobody is.

    But once we've gone around this line of reasoning we find ourself in a situation where the word Christian no longer has any meaning. Yet people call themselves Christian all the time. It doesn't really make sense to say no one is a Christian.

    So ultimately, despite (or perhaps, because of) my intellectual honesty I have to allow the word Christian to simply mean anyone who claims they are.

    And around and around the logic goes.

    But yes, for the record I accept your definition, at least for now, during conversations at this site.

    By Blogger Mark, at 10/07/2006 04:05:00 AM  

  • Skooter-
    Thank you so much for your encouragement and support. Your comment really meant a lot to me and I appreciate your kind words. God bless!

    By Blogger mrshammer, at 10/07/2006 01:45:00 PM  

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