Thursday, April 30, 2009

Comment of the Week


It's been a long time since I took a few minutes to highlight the sage words of a specific visitor to this site, but I felt I just couldn't let this one remain tucked away in the darkness of the comment section.

Everybody, give a warm welcome to Justyna:

"If today we watch movies to find out the truth instead of studying the Bible, I suggest go watch the movie Knowing* and think outside of the box.

Jesus never had kids. Don't know if that was a joke (?). People distort the word of God in every possible way, internet, discovery channel, wikipedia, your own belief, or the 850 Christian denominations, all unreliable to that dusty book in your hotel room.

Obviously, the best source is still the bestseller book written by prophets and people who walked with Jesus. Actually God already said he’d come in the flesh in the Old Testament [Isaiah 9:6] 'For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.'

Jesus of Nazareth came to fulfill this prophecy, was called ringleader of the Nazarene sect, and he resurrected on Sunday, 3 days after his crucifixion.

[John 2:19] Jesus answered them, 'Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.'
The Jews replied, 'it has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?' But the temple he had spoken of was his body.'

[Mark 16:1] "When the Sabbath was over...Very early on the first day of the week...When Jesus rose early on the first day of the week"

The 4th Commandment? 'Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy...the 7th day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God'

So why do so many Churches worship on Sunday, the first day of the week?

We must study the Bible correctly with spiritual eyes before calling it null and void. God reminds us to keep the law of new covenant, but Satan leads the world astray like a wolf in sheep’s clothing....i.e.: Jesus came with the new covenant Passover through his body and blood so we may live (does that say Communion?). Did he break bread or easter eggs? If God said Tuesday is recycling day, then Tuesday is recycling day.

Jesus said in his first coming: [John 14:26] 'All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you.'
Reread Isaiah and put it together. I invite anyone who is interested to study. That way we can understand God’s master plan and not repeat the same mistake made 2,000 years ago, rejecting Christ."


That was posted in response to the "Tuesday is Recycling Day" piece on James Cameron from the other day. Then there's this one, also from Justyna, written in response to yesterday's Jesus license plate story:

"This picture, 3 screws joke, and all of your comments make me see why the Lord will lay waste to the earth. Sun-worship is the devil's oldest tactic. Don't fall for it, there's nothing cheery when everything is revealed."

Now I'm not going to go too hard on Justyna, since A) I've met her and she's very nice, and B) she's a 23-year-old Christian living in Brooklyn -- which should in theory make her the loneliest person in the world. Also worth mentioning is that she's a spectacular artist -- which would make her comments seem like the work of an excellent satirist, were it not for the fact that I know they're completely sincere.

Regardless, this does shine a bright light on one of my oh-so-favorite qualities of those who count themselves among the Warriors for Christ: their propensity for preaching even to those who don't want to be preached to. Put another way: I don't believe in the Christian God or faith-based religion in general, but I don't troll Christian websites, arguing with the beliefs of their hosts and trying to convince them that they're wrong. Debate is one thing; proselytizing is something entirely different. I don't usually see a need to do either -- certainly not on someone else's internet property. It would be the equivalent of me walking into your home and arguing with you over your personal views; it's rude and anyone with a lick of good manners or common sense wouldn't do it. And yet, many True Believers don't see it that way; they have no compunction about knocking on your door -- or leaving long, rambling comments on your website -- and witnessing to you. Non-believers don't pull that sort of crap simply because the lack of belief is exactly what it sounds like: a negative state -- a default setting. It's nothing that needs to be shouted from the rooftops any more than breathing air would be.

I'm not saying that Justyna's unjustified in her comments, since it's not as if they're coming from a complete stranger (to me anyway), but that's not really the point.

It takes balls of steel to approach someone unsolicited and tell him or her that hell awaits those who don't believe in Jesus, then begin spouting scripture. And yet that's what millions of Christians -- particularly of the Southern Baptist, Evangelical variety -- do all the time. They do it because they honestly think God commands it (although it's worth mentioning that there's a word for someone who really believes he or she is personally getting instructions from God).

Speaking of which, if God said Tuesday is Recycling Day -- and that's something I came up with for this site, does that mean I'm God?

Oh, you fuckers are in so much trouble.

Anyway, welcome to the fold, Justyna. Good to have you.

*Really? You find religious inspiration in a Nic Cage movie? That worries me, honey.

49 comments:

B8ovin said...

"That way we can understand God’s master plan and not repeat the same mistake made 2,000 years ago, rejecting Christ."

It's a small thing I'm sure, but why did Jesus make the mistake of telling people that disease is caused by demons and not turn his people onto germ theory? Certainly he must have known this information, and could have saved millions, if not billions of lives.
To paraphrase Freud: Sometimes a man on a cross is just a man on a cross.

Deacon Blue said...

While there are ways prostelytizing can work, I'm sure, and more overt evangelism can be done in a non-dickish fashion, I know...I have to agree with Chez that it's generally a ballsy and ineffective line of approach. And I say this as a follower of Christ.

I tend to subscribe more to the "let Christ's light shine through you" philosophy. No one can come to Christ unless they WANT to, therefore all a Christian can do is provide insight, inspiration and support for that.

In other words, I'd rather be the non-lethal bug light attracting folks over so that we can chat about religious shit and they can make a decision, rather than doing some Gopher-bashing action with a Bible.

Which is pretty much why I only comment about religious stuff around here or debate folks when I think Christians are getting unfairly slammed.

Lord knows, though, we certainly have enough among our ranks that are willing to make us easy targets.
;-)

Ethnic Redneck said...

Any religion that condemns me to hell simply because I don't follow it precepts, regardless of whether or not I have ever heard of them, is automatically suspect. Basically, any religion which says "Well, you lived an exemplary life but since you didn't sign form 22-B, it's off to Hell with you." is capitalizing on a very specific fear of being 'Left Behind' (TM'd by Fear Mongering, Inc.) That kind of manipulation is the hallmark of cults and salespeople.

jrm78 said...

I too find inspiration in Nicholas Cage movies. Though people always wonder why I'm screaming "The BEES! No! Not the bees!!"

Though that reminds me of a religious coworker I had ~10 years ago at Circuit City, who said that Steve Buscemi's character singing "Jesus loves the little children" at the end of Con Air was proof that god loved us since he "converted" from creepy cannibal molester to harmless twit singing a lame religious song while playing with a child.

Anonymous said...

@B8ovin: I'm not jumping in here to either defend or rebut either side's views, but do you think that people 2000 years ago would have been able to handle the concept of germs? Would they have confused that concept with demons living in the body?

I bring this up because it was shown that washing hands would save lives by Ignaz Semmelweis, but doctors wouldn't do it. If you could travel back in time and give that information to those people, do you think that they would be ready to accept it?

If you really wanted to go down the path of God telling you not to do things, wouldn't you consider the current swine flu outbreak to be a good reason not to own or eat pork? What about the current link between circumcision and STDs? Of course, this probably occurred based on observations by people in the past and not by a command from God. I'm not arguing either way.

Heather Hansma said...

I thought my three-screws joke over on FB was particularity funny. Her art is alright. She has skill, but she isn't cohesive and needs to work on her critical eye. I can't help but come down hard on art. It is my life, after all.

RottweilerTOM said...

Chez, fucking poetic!

One of your best pieces ever...

Hey Justyna:

which version are you talking about?

Nancy said...

Uh-oh. Our entire TOWNSHIP is in deep doo-doo. By edict of the Board of Commissioners, we recycle on THURSDAYS. Oh, the shame of it!

Jeremy said...

Well, I'm a believer. I usually state my bias if I leave a comment on one of your religious posts and leave it at that. I don't think I've ever proselytized. It isn't my style. I figure if God (your conscience, karma) wants to deal with you, he/she will.

In Justyna's defense, I have family who are very "on fire" and their concern (although at times insulting because I see my faith as a personal "each man must work out his own salvation" prayer closet kind of relationship between myself and God), is usually done out of completely selfless concern for the people they love.

It doesn't mean you aren't correct that it's something that could be seen as somewhat rude. But I don't think it's was meant to be malicious.

You are also wrong about non-believers not "proselytizing". I had an acquaintance who used to stop by MY house to have coffee and play chess on weekend mornings who loved to try and argue with me about why my faith was so wrong-minded and misguided and the source of all ills in the world.

I'd tell him that my quiet prayers for world peace and greater patience weren't hurting anything, and such like, and suggest he roll a joint when he got too excitable (this was back in college).

But he was a very fanatical atheist. My favorite thing, when he got so worked up, was to ask him if he got that bent out of shape about the tooth fairy or the easter bunny of other mythical constructs too.

So yeah, there are just rude folks on all sides sometimes.

Anonymous said...

Here's the thing that always gets me about any god-based religion. Here's a guy who demands my worship or will condemn me to eternal punishment. Yet he can't be bothered to give a call every couple of years? Seriously, he created the whole fucking universe in seven days but can't make the occasional public announcement? Imagine if every ten years, March 1st is "God's Day" and at noon GMT god speaks directly to the entire world. - Ding - "Hey everybody, God here, just want want to remind everyone that I'll send you to hell if you don't believe in me. Have great a great life, I'll see you when you're dead."

-Rob_F

Suzy said...

RRREEEEEEEEE_TAAAAARD.

Maybe her artwork would be helped by doing a nude of Carrie Prejean.

Chez said...

Now, now.

The Manimal said...

Here's a good one: Jesus walks into a motel, hands the clerk three nails and asks, "Can you put me up for the night?"

I'm so going to hell in a gasoline suit.

Nate said...

I agree wholeheartedly. I work in the astronomy department at a major university and once a week, I have to go around and tear down the religious flyers that some asshole staples to every bulletin board on the first floor of the building. I don't go into your church and put up flyers about how the bible is repeatedly proved wrong by science; don't come into my place of work with your biblical hullabaloo. I am perfectly happy to live and let live, I only ask that you pay me the same respect.

Michael J. West said...

I apologize in advance, since you say here that you don't see much need for debate, but I have to challenge you on this point:

they have no compunction about knocking on your door -- or leaving long, rambling comments on your website -- and witnessing to you. Non-believers don't pull that sort of crapOh, yes they do. Loudly. Just because YOU don't pull that sort of crap doesn't mean that non-believers as a whole don't. Richard Dawkins? Sam Harris? Christopher Hitchens? Penn Jillette? Proselytizers, all. Jillette, in fact, goes so far as to say that he doesn't respect people who DON'T proselytize, on one side or the other.

And if you don't think that the Christian websites are full of trolls who come in just to mock and/or undermine the beliefs of the sites' intended targets, I've got a bridge or two that you might be interested in. Hell, I used to BE one of those trolls before I grew up.

Your overall points about proselytizers are well taken, IMO, but let's not pretend that the faithful are the only guilty party.

kanye said...

I've come to the conclusion that a great many of those who count themselves among the faithful don't so much believe in God, but rather they believe in the belief of God.

gina r. said...

I grew up in Montgomery, Alabama, which is nicknamed 'the Buckle of the Bible belt.' I was raised roman catholic (might as well have been a jew as far as the populace was concerned), and was routinely approached by the rabid, brain washed children of southern baptists and every other flavor of protestant and told that I was going to hell. Occasionally was told they were praying for me. Occasionally the parents would join in. Whee.

I would like to thank all of the people who took the time to alternately villify and pity me (called "witnessing"), because it helped shape my world view. Justyna, thanks to you and your "well intentioned" ilk, I can laugh at the Bible I once prayed from. I can see it all as bedtime stories that inspire some to acts of kindness and service, and others to horrendous blood shed in the name of a big bearded dude in the sky that hangs out with naked winged babies and cares about my masturbatory practices.

Making a point by quoting from the bible ranks among getting porridge recipes from three particular bears and building tips from little pigs. bah.

You wanna pray for me? Go ahead. Love me and the rest of the damned sinners in silence, please.

I prefer Carl Sagan, astronomy, and feeling a simple minded happiness in being awed by the scope of what I don't know and can't understand. There's my two cents.
*curtsy*

Chez said...

Michael, indeed a cottage industry has sprung up out of being an atheist these days -- but I really do see it as more a reaction than an action. That said, one on one -- not in book form or on a talk show -- you're much more likely to run into a stranger who tries to convince you there's a god than one who tries to convince you there isn't.

Benoit from Ottawa said...

@ Jeremy: maybe it's just me (a devout atheist), but it seems to me that the frustrations of atheists which sometimes, or often, come out as vehemence are grounded in the fact that religions always garner sooooooooooooooooooo much airtime and reverential attention, if not necessarily respect.

O.k., so the U.S. is highly "religious", going by the numbers who self-declare as such, but what I just said is also true, I think, internationally and across religions. For instance the Pope visiting any country, or the Dalai Lama. Also, in Canada (not as religious as the States), swearing on the Bible is still the first option. (We can also swear on our honour.)

I know that for years, now, my dander has come up quickly and often. For instance about some Catholic priests' *AHEM* "indiscretions". Because of the soft treatment long accorded the Catholic dioceses here and there, sometimes abuses that have been known about for decades are now just getting more finally dealt with.

But it's not just a thing with the Church (after all still a power structure). Anytime anyone steps to a mike and talks of God, huge reverential silence. No matter how inane the pronouncement. (Don't let me get started on angels!)

It's a pain in the posterior, mentally, to constantly have to put up with official acknowledgment of what seems to you like children's beliefs.

Anyway. Maybe that helps explain the 'splodin' by your friend.

CatBallou said...

If Justyna thinks that any part of the bible was written by "people who walked with Jesus," she's just shamefully ignorant about her own religion.
And to the anonymous commenter who thinks that people 2000 years ago weren't ready for the germ theory, what do you think is the intellectual difference between a baby born 2000 years ago, and one born today? Nothing. We don't inherit knowledge. So anything that we, who are born with no knowledge, are capable of learning and understanding, a person born centuries ago would be capable of learning and understanding. "God" would just have to lay the groundwork.

Jason said...

Personally I am glad when starts to proselytize to me.

I know then to avoid them like the plague.

Nothing is more annoying than watching a beautiful, divine human being be brainwashed into a power structure that is based on active denial.

Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love spiritual people that have a handle on their human spirit. However, I am of the firm belief that anyone who takes the Bible literally has mental health problems.

Michael J. West said...

A reaction it may well be, Chez, but I'd file that under "Two wrongs don't make a right." It's a mistake to assume that what makes Christian proselytizers annoying and offensive is that they're Christian - it's that they're proselytizing.

When I hear an agnostic or atheist counter-proselytizing (to coin a term), regardless of context, I don't think "Vindication!" I think "Great. Another jerk who can't keep his [non]beliefs to himself."

Aike said...

I've already reconciled with the fact I am going to hell. If it isnt hell, then it will be gehenna or I will be reincarnated as a fruitfly. No matter how you spin it, I am going to break some rule, somewhere. There simply are too many of these damned religions to follow, and they all want you to do something else. It's a dilemma. I suppose I could become a scientologist, but that's too expensive. Ah well... so, hell it is. At least it will be warm and I hear the company is better, I mean anyone that ever was interesting went to hell. I'll hang out with Mark Twain and Oscar Wilde over Pope Pious II and that crazed psycho lady with the sandwich board who chases after old people with crucifixes ANY day of the week. Especially if it is going to be for eternity.

I suppose I could bank on the whole forgiveness thing, but that defeats the whole purpose, really. I mean if you can do what you want and then just say your sorry... that sort of is pointless, there is a catch.

In the meantime, I declare myself an Orthodox Daoist. Much more satisfying. No-one knows what it is, and if they do, they won't argue with you. Of course, if you go by the movie/anime take of Daoism, you can claim wanton crazed sex as research into achieving immortality. Bonus.

Deacon Blue said...

Benoit,

I'd have to say yes and no to your assertion that Christianity gets more play.

In the media and daily life as a whole, Christianity is still mostly drowned out by other stuff. I'm not saying it doesn't exert a noticeable impact and get some attention, but really, there is way more that gets aired out there than religion, and much of what gets aired is 180 degrees from most religious precepts.

Now, it is true that too many politicians use religion as a springboard and rallying point for actual law and policy, and that sucks, especially in those areas where Christians are such that they just rubber stamp that shit.

Also, I think it's pretty fair to say that in most places that aren't super-damn homogenous, mentioning Jesus will get people to leave a room or stop paying attention faster than damn near anything else. I've yet to see very many people flinch when a person mantions fortune tellers, Wicca, Buddha, or anyone else...even God. But damn, mention Jesus at all in serious terms and you get labelled a Jesus freak.

I know, I contributed to that kind of thing in the past, and I've experienced it myself since becoming born again, even when I don't get in anyone's face.

Janean said...

It's fear I think. That's my personal experience anyway. I think a lot of people do that when they are confronted with anyone that doesn't believe in God because just hearing someone mention the remote possibility that everything they've been told is wrong is terrifying. Even when I got to the point of questioning just how much of this stuff I want to accept I found myself defending the IDEA of God out of a reflexive fear from all of the hell-fire and brimstone Baptist programming I've received for much of my life. I may have even done that here at some point (sorry). We were also taught that if we didn't claim our christianity loudly and publicly Jesus would deny us later. So I think much of it is based on the fear that a.) they could be wrong and b.) they'll go to Hell if they don't argue with every non believer they meet.
I still have religious beliefs; I've just become willing to admit they aren't necessarily rational, and I no longer think it's a horrible tragedy if other people don't share them. The last several years have helped me understand that religious beliefs should be personal and should not be a part of government and politics, and that absolutely nothing positive is gained from trying to force people to take your religious beliefs seriously when they are based on ideas that actually sound quite ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

@CatBallou: I'm not saying that we're any smarter. Nowhere in my comment did I imply that. I'm saying that people today are better able to understand and accept the theory of germs because of the environment in which we are reared/educated. There were people that probably could have grasped the idea of germs and acted accordingly living in that period. I'm advocating that as a whole, people of that time period would not have been able to handle it.

Did you even read the link about hand washing? The doctors had experimental evidence that hand washing prevented deaths and continued to do so. This was in 1847.

If you read any about the history of science in general, it's amazing to see how things fall into place once enough context is established. This is especially true in mathematics.

So, you can't just tell someone something and expect them to believe it. They need to have enough context. If you wanted to at least show them micro-organisms existed you would have to build a microscope. The microscope was not invented until 1595. The proof of germ theory didn't happen until 1875.

Check out the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis. It's absolutely amazing if true. (I believe that it is, but can't offer proof.)

B8ovin said...

Anon, I'm not sure I follow your logic. You're assuming Jesus was real and would have tole his followers the "germ theory" and I am assuming that Jesus wasn't real AND that the Bible doesn't explain illness correctly. One of the reasons doctor's were resistant to germ theory is because of a western culture of knowledge based on Biblical authority. IF the Bible had explained germ theory it would have saved lives, not just in ancient times but through the generations that treated demons. The reluctance to give credence to scientific ideas in deference to the Bible is alive and well today in the climate change debate through certain deniers of the science.
I can't believe you are serious in your equating Old Testament bans on pork with today's "swine flu". Pigs are not intrinsically harmful, nor is pork when handled correctly. Indeed, germ theory would have disillusioned an ancient nomadic desert group of pork's indecency. One could make the argument that tribalism, a theme of great concern to the Biblical authors, is much more dangerous than pigs, as it is through populations that viral strains adapt resistant strains.
In short, I see no real helpful information in the Bible apart from remedial moral philosophy that would indicate an all knowing God inspiring the authorship. As such I question its usefulness as an argument for changing my mind about my atheism.
And give me a break Michael J. West. Writing a book and speaking in response to invitations is not proselytizing. By your use of the word no one with a contrary view point would be allowed to discuss that view without being labeled "proselytizer". None of the people you mentioned induce people to atheism, they merely discuss the problems with assumptions of religious faith and defend their atheism against attack. Not the same thing.

cgwalt said...

Her artwork is weak.
Sorry, but it is.

Chez said...

Sorry, folks. I'm a layman. Looks fine to me.

Deacon Blue said...

Well, her artwork is universes ahead of anything I can do. Like Chez, I'd give it fairly high marks.

But in defense of the artists critiquing her, I (as writer and editor) would probably talk trash about a best-selling Harelquin romance writer

Anonymous said...

@B8ovin: Yes, I took the tact that Jesus did exist and that providing that information would not have been accepted by the people of that time. The modern printing press (Gutenberg) did not exist so any teaching would have occurred to a small group of people with limited resources.

The political and economic conditions at that point made it easier to use the existing messianic teachings of the Jewish people. Even then it took a three hundred years for it to become accepted.

As far as pork is concerned, yes I know that it is safe to eat. I eat it all of the time. However, the mixing of large populations of animals and people is key here. Pigs are the current "scapegoat". The same thing applies to birds. Don't forget cow pox either. Mixing the populations is what allows the diseases to jump from one to the other. Even with our current understanding we don't know how to prevent this from happening. We will probably never be able to prevent this from happening.

I don't know what you were trying to say with the tribalism remark.

I thought about your idea that some all knowing being should have taught something that would have helped the people. (Or maybe a time traveller.) My personal feeling is that teaching people to create a Gutenberg printing press would have been more useful invention. If you read the link, just the creation of the printing press would require the creation and teaching of a lot of other science. Also, it would have required resources that would have only been available to the powerful. Only a select few would have had the ability to read.

kanye said...

As cgwalt falls off the potential wingman list...

Jeremy said...

@Benoit

Totally understood. But its essentially the flip side of the coin of the rabid guys on the other end... the ones who, because of the media they surround themselves with, are convinced that every movie about two cowboys falling in love or lesbian actress who wants a family are a threat to what they see as reason.

I'm not saying they are right, not by a long shot. In fact I'm inclined to agree probably more with you on most things, as far as criticisms of the organized church. I think "those folks" have perverted religion and made those of us who find real value in our faith an ungraspable anomaly to many of our more thoughtful acquaintances.

But I still don't understand the rage. Especially when its directed at the folks who aren't shoving things down your throat.
You wouldn't go into a tribal society and ridicule their rituals while a guest in their village (or maybe you would, I don't presume to know you, but we'll assume for the sake of argument you aren't a complete douche since you were trying to logically explain my friend's POV). To me, its just as disrespectful and distasteful to come into my home and flip out over my bible being out in view.

I will concede that the flood of tearful evangelist on every other TV channel Sunday mornings is more than a bit disturbing. As are the networks like TBN. I'm with you there. But even as someone who identifies as a Christian, I have enough respect for the beliefs (or non-beliefs) of others that I can accept some respectful coverage of events like a visit from the Dalai Lama. It's no different than sitting quietly through a lecture with a scientist you might disagree with on some point, before respectfully asking questions at the appropriate time.

(Of course, my only problem with scientists is astronomy and theoretical physics, because I can't ever begin to understand the mathematics involved in calculating red shift, and all the other formulas used to calculate the expansion of the universe. It might as well be Latin and I an illiterate peasant relying on the parish priest to translate for me. So I have to take it on faith and while I can have faith in something I can read and understand myself, and work out in private prayer, I can't have faith in something that I rely on a man either priest or professor, to tell me is truth because they "say so." Science that I can observe with my own eyes by looking at fossils and living animals, like evolution, I got no problem with.)

Jeremy said...

@Janean

I think you are very much on the right track about fear. I didn't really appreciate all the inherent beauty in my faith until I got past that, and the fear manifesting as proselytizing almost put me off Christianity altogether (still not quite over the opposition to organized religion).
As you note, its the fear that everything they've held onto might be wrong, or fear of having their faith tested. And it's that fear, that hellfire and brimstone fear, that has been instilled in them from their earliest days.

I remember that in the rural Appalachian county where I grew up, there was a little Baptist church with a sign out front that said "What if the Bible is right and there really is a Hell?"

I drove past that sign every day on my way to my high school, and it would poke at something in the back of my mind. IF there was a Hell, and I ended up there, didn't I probably deserve it? And because I'd done horrible things, like we've all done horrible things.
Accepting Jesus was supposed to help me understand that I wasn't saddled by those things, that despite my humanity I didn't have to live in Hell, either self-imposed on this earth or some fiery punishment after I shuffled off this mortal coil (I kind of like to think the first, metaphorical interpretation is more in the spirit of things.)
If that was the case, these so called christians were all on the wrong path. They were all going to hell (or were already living in their own personal little hells, as one lady with an abusive husband once told a congregation member, "Joey is my cross to bear".)

I always wanted to replace that sign with one that said "Fear of damnation is not the save as Salvation." I felt like a lot of people bound up in their hair-shirts could benefit from that. But I was just a kid, and by the time I had the balls to go through with it, I thought better of it.

Besides, it smacked too much of proselytizing for my tastes.

justjustyna said...

The funny thing about me coming off as super-Christian is someone said to me today “I can tell you’ve been studying this for about 30 years.” No way, I opened the Bible 3 months ago for the first time. How’s this possible? Nothing is done by our own power so we have to let go of arrogance. God uses us like tools. This message is spread worldwide; we are just fulfilling a prophecy.

Why I do it? if you had the cure for cancer would you keep it to yourself, or would you try to save as many people who were dying as you could? It's true anyone can come to Christ if the way is opened for them, except many people are blinded with the worldly mind. Before, Justyna used to enjoy philosophy, or theory of evolution, or check out what the Buddhists are up to...but now? what is philosophy but high sounding nonsense? are scientists creating new species or just discovering God's creations? and when we're in a crisis, is an ancestor going to help us? Kill your idols.

How did my life flip over in such a short time? Friends don’t recognize me anymore and the bonds that once held us are broken. When I was baptized in the name of the Holy Spirit (bc we’re not in the Jesus Age anymore) I stepped out of the matrix, and spiritually don’t belong to this earth. Einstein already “discovered” different dimensions, but what might that say about how many more God dwells on? That’s why this book of prophecy is not of this Earth (a speck of dust in the galaxy in the middle of a meteor shower) but a way to teach us how to return to heaven’s dimension, through Passover. It’s no secret. Many are invited but few hear. [Hebrews 4:2] “but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.” It’s not easy to accept the truth, we love to eat from the tree and follow satan.

Talking to people is like I get transported from 2009 to the 1400’s and try to talk about America but they don’t believe because the world is flat. I hope someone here comes to study.

I thank Christ Ahnsahnghong our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me faithful, appointing me to his service. Mother Jerusalem lives.

Michael J. West said...

Proselytize v. to recruit or convert especially to a new faith, institution, or cause.

Sorry, b8ovin, but anyone who does the above, be it in a book, at an invited speaking engagement, or on a street corner, is proselytizing.

Jillette, as I indicated before, considers HIMSELF to be a proselytizer. Of the three others I mentioned, one has gone on the record stating that God is a "delusion"; another, that "religion poisons everything"; and the third, that the very idea of tolerating the religious beliefs of others is dangerous and in error.

The context in which they say these things is irrelevant. So while you may choose not to regard these people as proselytizers, B8ovin, with all due respect you're kidding yourself.

gina r said...

well, that explanation isn't creepy at all. referring to oneself in the third person, swallowing whole and regurgitating a doctrine in 3 months, cutting ties with those that have loved you, stepping out of the matrix.
aaalrighty.
good luck with that.
i'm gonna go drink some sin coffee and dream of the day when I am surrounded by artists, intellectuals, and drag queens, in Hell.
kill your idols in-frakin-deed.

Peach said...

Meh. Honestly I think every group touts it's business in it's own way.
Vegans? Snobbery at it's finest...
Vegitarians? Smug...
Christians? Preach...
Athiests? Superiority complex...
Muslims? Insist to much...
Jews? Cling to ethnocentric ideas...
Black Americans? Think they're all fly...
White Americans? Think they're way too smart...
Asian Americans? Stick together in packs..
Hispanic Americans? Refuse to assimilate...
Arab Americans? Take themselves too seriously...
Agnostics? Cant make up their damn mind...
Hipsters? Bored already...
Rockers? Fighting the invisible 'Man'..
Brothas? Dont actually give a fuck...

Am I forgetting anybody here?
Anybody?

Amish? Condacending until they need a flu shot...
Hacidics? As bad as Catholics...
Stay at home moms? Lazy...
Stay at home dads? Feminine...
Republicans? Insane...
Democrats? Spineless...
Independants? Indecisive...
Marxists? Annoyingly naive...
Che supporters? Apparently down with homosexual death camps...
KKK? Fighting a loosing war...


It just seems to me that every 'group' has it's own failings. To go after this one in particular, to me, seems boring and passe.
It's like arguing over what is 'art' or 'music'.

Allthough I must say, I do love the art.

Jeremy said...

Waitaminute...
Justyna, you talk about the Passover salvation and then said "Ahnsahnghong" Christ.

Both set off little alarms.

Do you mean the Korean Ahn Sang-hong? Guy who converted from Buddhist to Seventh Day Adventist before declaring himself the second-coming?

I appreciate your journey of spiritual discovery Justyna, but be careful of folks who claim to be God or the Second Coming.

I know many Christians who believe we are in the last days. If they are right, by their own doctrine many will be deceived by false prophets and left behind. Scripture says that when Jesus comes back its going to be a big production, coming back in glory. Clouds and trumpets and all that jazz. He's not going to come back, die, and pass his legacy on to someone else.

Just look at your teachers with a more critical eye please. There is nothing wrong with questioning the words of men. Think and pray about it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Mission_Society_Church_of_God

Deacon Blue said...

I've been officially born again for well over a decade, and I had to Google "Ahnsahnghong" after reading Juntyna's recent comment.

Y'all can research as well as I can. I won't say anything except to say to you, Junstyna, that I know spiritual change can and often does happen quickly. I know from experience, and it's something that a person not operating from a faith base is usually going to understand, except to assume delusion or stupidity.

But still, what I've seen thus far about the whole "Christ Ahnsahnghong" thing makes me concerned that the speed of your changes and the degree of them may have more to do with being in with a small group of possibly charismatic folks who may be espousing fringe doctrine.

Having been in a small church recently that I saw go from being based in the Word to being heretical and cultish in a matter of months, I urge caution, my dear. It is easy to get caught up and to lose sight of the message of the gospel in favor of flashier things that lead you away from the path.

blackbird said...

I don't want to start any blasphemous rumours....

memphisto said...

>I don't usually see a need to do either -- certainly not on someone else's internet property. It would be the equivalent of me walking into your home and arguing with you over your personal views; it's rude and anyone with a lick of good manners or common sense wouldn't do it.

I'm sorry, but I can't go along with this. This internet is anything but anyone's home. It's a public space. And a blog isn’t a conversation with like-minded friends in your living room; it’s going to the park and shouting at the other people. If some of the people shout back, well, good for them. And if you are going to blog and post your opinions, especially if you solicit comments, you are tacitly opening the debate to people you may not agree with. Personally, I think comment moderation that goes any farther than profanity or advertisement hunting is an act of cowardice. To use the home analogy- if you can’t take the heat, stay out of the kitchen.

I may not agree with Justyna’s comments, but I will defend to the death her right to post them. There are a lot of things worse than having to listen to opinions you don’t agree with, and not hearing them is one of those things.

Chez said...

I disagree -- to an extent.

The internet is certainly a place where a free exchange of ideas is possible and even encouraged -- and no one wants to hear from only those who agree with his or her opinions; at least I don't. But you can't tell me that showing up at a relatively small, single-person blog like this one -- one that you don't normally read -- just to try to shout down the host's opinion, isn't the equivalent of, say, a redneck showing up at a bar in Harlem just to pick a fight. I'm not saying that it's out and out wrong; simply a really stupid and unnecessary idea -- especially when the topic is religion since, I'm sorry man, but you're not going to change anyone's mind on the subject, regardless of which side you're on.

As for comment moderation -- tough shit. I've made it clear in the past what will get a comment dumped and very few do. Free exchange of ideas or not, this is still my house. Don't like it? As I've said a hundred times before: It's a big internet -- get your own blog.

gina said...

there's only one way to settle this:

Dance Party.

Chez said...

And you know, Justyna -- the 3-months-of-Bible-study thing kinda makes sense now, seeing as how when I ran into you last, you didn't seem this, um, "on fire."

Congrats, honey. You're officially in a cult -- and a really fucking insane one at that (not that there's typically any other kind).

Michael J. West said...

Not knowing Justyna, what troubles me is the comment that "Friends don’t recognize me anymore and the bonds that once held us are broken" -- said so offhandedly and matter-of-factly, as though this was just something that happened, not an emotional experience in any way.

Seriously, Justyna -- when your friends can't relate to you anymore, the first thing that goes through your mind ought to be "What the hell's gone wrong?:

Deacon Blue said...

Gina,

Dance party? Nah. I'd rather see a "walk off" like in "Zoolander."

gina said...

Deacon,

Can't we do Both? I'll make cupcakes and punch, and we can all play twister and have a pillow fight.

Till the breaka breaka dawn.

memphisto said...

>But you can't tell me that showing up at a relatively small, single-person blog like this one -- one that you don't normally read -- just to try to shout down the host's opinion, isn't the equivalent of, say, a redneck showing up at a bar in Harlem just to pick a fight.

I may not be able to tell you that, but I would surmise that you haven’t been in many barfights if you think so. The very fact that inflicting violence on someone would be equated with hearing a differing or even offensive opinion just shows how fragile and precious we have become about our views. Sticks and stones… In a free society, one predicated on enlightenment and group determination, I think the market of ideas is paramount. Have “echo chamber” media outlets such as Fox News done anything but help fossilize opinions? We need more honest debate, not less, and the places that debate can happen have become few and far between. Certainly not in the media, or the workplace, or the church, or the university. It seems the only two places you see real expression anymore are on the net and freeway rush hour. And only one of those has any hope of intellectual debate;-)

Saying that you aren’t going to change anyone’s mind is both defeatist and demonstrably wrong. People’s minds have and do change about religion, and a whole lot of other things. People get converted and people fall away. New mores replace old ones. It’s a slow process sometimes, but it starts with everyone having a chance to have their say and listening to everyone else.

Sure, it’s your ball and bat and if you don’t like the way the game is going you can take them and go home. But at the risk of Cuisenarting metaphors, that redneck in Harlem is going to get the crap beat out of him. And while I don’t espouse violence, I agree with James Randi when he says that booting his cat through the door smartens it up considerably. Perhaps that redneck is going to think twice after conducting his little experiment, and perhaps the unwanted poster is going to think a little too.

(PS. I didn't mean to imply that your comment moderation was draconian, just pointing out that moderation is basically censorship by definition- even for the reasons mentioned. And inherently carries certain connotations.)