Dissecting Gracealone1’s Comment

***

Sometimes we have commenters here who like to challenge us. Sometimes the language and tone used seem familiar to what we experienced in our abusive churches. Commenter “gracealone1” has been engaging SSB readers on the comments in this article, JD Hall of Pulpit and Pen Launches Voice in the Wilderness Radio, and one of his comments in particular set off alarms for me. Most likely others had the same reaction. If you did, let’s talk.

The comment begins below and I added more paragraph breaks for easier reading.

 

-Julie Anne


 

Still here———-reading.

There is a great danger in how the after effects of spiritual abuse is handled. It takes no effort at all to let your emotions fester, to let anger rule your every word (something that seems to be the favorite accusation of those here who do not know the Biblical way to deal with abuse), to let bitterness swell to the point of hatred (some here are getting close), and to turn a deaf ear to the simple commands of the Lord Jesus. Some have fought their way throw this by the means detailed in the Scriptures and others continue their ill-gotten diatribes against those who would point them in the right direction.
There are many Biblical commands (there’s that pesky word again that few like) that lead in the proper way to deal with, get past and actually forgive those that have been abusers.

1) Thank God for the whole experience, no matter how long the duration or how severe the trauma you were treated to.

2) Did you seriously think that you as a Christian would escape such persecutions as these when your brothers and sisters have suffered far, far worse than we, now and throughout the centuries past? Why should YOU escape?

Heads are being removed even today for the testimony of the Savior, but somehow we feel it our right to bemoan our situation to the point of disgusting self pity, meanwhile sucking the life out of those we call upon to feel the same pity as we. Shame on you! Christ suffered the ultimate humiliation, His death on the cross, but yet we seek to justify our complaining of our “situation” rather than praise Him for being counted worthy to suffer for His Name’s sake.

Enter the “Warm & Fuzzy” crowd. Warm and fuzzy is completely useless here. In fact, it only does good for the one doling it out and accomplishes zero for the one who has been assaulted. Showing sympathy/empathy is not enough. Feeling sorry for another’s plight helps them how? It would be far more helpful to point such a person to the Scriptures, remind them of the promises of God for His beloved children, get them to seek their Lord and Savior until relief is realized.

If your description of the love of God does not go far, far beyond this blasphemous definition of “warm and fuzzy” it is highly likely that that person knows nothing of the love of God found only in Jesus Christ. [the question must be asked here for those in disagreement: did you ever repent of your sins? or was you ‘repentance’ bound up in the words “I repent”? For those who have known what it is to repent the answer is easy: it was probably the most emotional and gut-wrenching thing in their entire life. For those who have gone the deceitful way of easy-believeism it’s usually only a few words said in passing with the perceived or claimed ‘sincerity’ being immaterial].

3) Ask God for wisdom as to how to handle each persecution. If you walk with Him on a daily basis this will become a no-brainer (did you take up your cross today? if you did, then you should naturally expect to be crucified on it.) There are specific Scriptures that apply to all that I’ve said here and will be happy to cite them if you wish. There is more, but enough for now.

To allow the bitterness and ensuing hatred that is common to the natural man to control a person means that their persecutor has won the war, they are virtually useless in the service and obedience to the Savior, and things will likely only get worse over time. It results in constant attacks, especially toward those with whom they differ, skewed views of Scripture that accommodate their own specialized heresy, and an unteachable mindset (not unteachable by other men, but by the Holy Spirit). They refuse to humble themselves before the Lord and will get to the point where humility is only for the other guy, they have somehow (in their own mind) grown past the need to be humble before the Creator.

BTDT, if you had only read a little further you would have seen the real reason for my welcomed dismissal from SBCVoices was the fact that ALL of the commenters (by default, the moderator, too) had ganged up on man from Tennessee. They dog-piled this guy mercilessly over and over again simply because he asked a question that they did not feel was worthy of their consideration. So yes, I jumped in and fired at will. And guess what? I’d do the same for you in a similar situation.

To set the record straight, I am not a Calvinist (how many definitions are there now?) But I am a firm believer in the Scriptures that came centuries before John Calvin. Also, Calvin was right 100% when it comes to T U L I P. There are hundreds of verses that speak of predestination, election, being chosen, etc. etc. but those of the Arminian heresy dismiss them all in favor of man’s “free-will”. Something that has no part in a man’s salvation whatsoever. “You are saved BY GRACE through FAITH and that NOT OF YOURSELVES it is THE GIFT OF GOD. To state otherwise is to make the Word of God a lie and remembering that JESUS CHRIST IS THE WORD OF GOD one should take great care before they call Him a liar. If a man wants to believe the lie that by an act of his will he will gain salvation, then that man has no need of grace, and if grace is not how you were “saved” then you are still lost.

84 comments on “Dissecting Gracealone1’s Comment

  1. “2) Did you seriously think that you as a Christian would escape such persecutions as these when your brothers and sisters have suffered far, far worse than we, now and throughout the centuries past?”

    No, but I certainly never expected abuse to come at the hands of those who claim to be “brothers and sisters.”

    “Why should YOU escape?”

    How does one escape a cannibalistic “church?”

    “To allow the bitterness and ensuing hatred that is common to the natural man to control a person means that their persecutor has won the war”

    Then I really pity you. Your anger shows you lost to someone or something.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Julie Anne, you can delete my comment from the other post. I didn’t see it until I posted my comment.

    Gracealone1,

    You have a serious problem with emotions. Your own peers disagree with you in regards to doctrinal stuff, so as far as I can see, you are all over the place in YOUR belief system. You do not conform to any ONE doctrine. You have one doctrine from one place, another doctrine from another place, and so on. I’ve read your comments on more than one blog. People are trying to be nice to you, from your own peer groups, but your attitude stinks to even them.

    You had said:
    “we seek to justify our complaining of our “situation” rather than praise Him for being counted worthy to suffer for His Name’s sake. Enter the “Warm & Fuzzy” crowd. Warm and fuzzy is completely useless here. In fact, it only does good for the one doling it out and accomplishes zero for the one who has been assaulted. Showing sympathy/empathy is not enough. Feeling sorry for another’s plight helps them how? It would be far more helpful to point such a person to the Scriptures, ”

    1. We have the biblical right to complain of our situations.

    2. No one here is suffering for His Names Sake. No one is persecuting anyone here for being a Christian. That is what suffering for His Names Sake means. People here are suffering due to what others, claiming the name of Christ, did to them.

    3. Warm and Fuzzy: You have a problem with love as an emotion. Hate and anger is what you spew. You mention to BTDT about someone to whom you were trying to protect. Well, you know what? That isn’t the ONLY place that you have commented. I’ve seen other websites that you have commented from your own group of people (PEEPS, or PEERS) that believe in TULIP, just as you do, and they have had to put you in your place as well, based on your tone, as well as your differences in doctrinal topics.

    4. Feeling sorry for their plight helps them how? Are you kidding me? Empathy and compassion is what you lack. Show them scripture, you state:

    Well here ya go:

    Romans 12:15
    Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.

    Ed

    Liked by 7 people

  3. Gracealone1 – the Bible says to be thankful in all circumstances, not for all circumstances (or as you put it, “for the whole experience”). Big difference.

    Liked by 6 people

  4. BTDT,

    You said:
    “Your anger shows you lost to someone or something.”

    I agree very much with that statement. There is an underlying reason for his anger, for which many have noticed, even from his own peers. That is probably why he has a problem with love as an emotion.

    Ed

    Liked by 2 people

  5. “BTDT, if you had only read a little further you would have seen the real reason for my welcomed dismissal from SBCVoices was the fact that ALL of the commenters (by default, the moderator, too) had ganged up on man from Tennessee.”

    I’m going to put this link here, even though I already posted it at the end of the last thread. Most of the other commenters were very cordial . . . except gracealone1.

    http://sbcissues.wordpress.com/2012/12/06/341/

    Ed is right. You come across arrogant and prideful everywhere you post.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Wow. Wow. Wow. I don’t get on here every day, so I missed this discussion that inspired the comment featured in this post. Ugh. It makes me itch just to read it. Can’t. Go. There. My word. Whomever this was directed to (BTDT, was it you?) I am so sorry for you and you have my love and support.

    Liked by 4 people

  7. Thank you, Andrea. I’m not sure if it was directed at me or not. If so, I didn’t catch that. 🙂

    This isn’t the first time gracealone1 has been on SSB. There’s other comments.
    https://spiritualsoundingboard.com/2014/06/17/trying-to-make-sense-of-what-god-allows-good-and-evil/comment-page-1/#comment-124204

    Maybe he feels like it’s his calling to make us suffer for the cause of Christ? I don’t know. I do know I feel very sorry for him. He comes across as truly miserable.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. 1) Thank God for the whole experience, no matter how long the duration or how severe the trauma you were treated to.

    This comment is very short-sighted. I can now thank God for my spiritually abusive experience. It has taught me many lessons that I might not have learned otherwise, I have gained life-long friends through the process, etc. But to make a blanket statement that we are to thank God for being abused is out of line.

    You don’t get to determine when someone gets to the point in their recovery process that they are thankful. Would you tell a rape victim that they need to thank God for the whole experience?

    Liked by 5 people

  9. I have been following gracealone1 comments. His words bring back to my mind the graceless place I attended for years. I alternate between feeling scared of his dire, cold demeanor & outraged at his view on love=fuzzy Jesus.

    What keeps coming to mind is the scriptures that says: If I have not love I am nothing? You can have faith that moves mountains, the gift of prophecy & fathom all mysteries & knowledge… Y’all know 1st.Corinthians 13. Love never fails. Jesus never fails.

    I read this the other day at HeatherKingsblog, what she said, seems pertinent to our discussion. I agree with her, to try & reason with the likes of gracealone1 is probably useless. His mind is made up & it is his way or the highway to hell.

    “So trying to reason with such people is useless. You can only continue to look at your own sin, to pray for your own ongoing conversion, to tell stories. You can know that this battle between truth and error, the light and the darkness, is THE battle of the cosmos. It is the battle Christ fought and died for. It is the battle in which the victor–the most unlikely victor imaginable–is a child-like heart, quick to be hurt, quick to forgive, quick to wonder, slow to judge, forever amenable to correction.”

    I pray that I will have a child like heart in that I am quick to be hurt, quick to forgive, quick to wonder, slow to judge…
    Thanks to Ed & Amos & all for your contributions, I am smh, just floored by graceless.

    Liked by 4 people

  10. It’s a paradox, isn’t it? A rape victim should “thank God for the whole experience,” but a church that gets negative reviews should sue the one speaking less than glowingly about them.

    Liked by 5 people

  11. 2) Did you seriously think that you as a Christian would escape such persecutions as these when your brothers and sisters have suffered far, far worse than we, now and throughout the centuries past? Why should YOU escape?

    I have a big-time problem with this. Persecution has to do with being persecuted for religious purposes, not for ordinary ABUSE. Funny thing, abusive pastors, abusive spouses use the “persecution for righteousness sake” all the time to keep victims with their abusers. It’s not working here on this blog and I hope no reader here will tolerate or put up with abuse thinking that they need to stay so they will get their Persecution brownie points. Staying with an abuser is only enabling them to abuse more. LEAVE!

    Liked by 6 people

  12. 1) Thank God for the whole experience, no matter how long the duration or how severe the trauma you were treated to.

    God does not desire that I thank Him for the evil that was perpetrated on me as a innocent little girl. It was not His desire/plan for me. He doesn’t want or need me to thank him for being raped at 5 years old. It was evil that did that to me. I will never thank God for being beat, raped, along with many sick beatings on my bare bottom from 2 till 14 years old. God is not a monster, He grieved over the ways I was ruined.

    Liked by 8 people

  13. This is why I should stop reading blogs…! Just reading this post has my stomach hurting and in knots, and now I need to cry and find some adorable kitten videos.

    Liked by 4 people

  14. Oasis,

    I pray for your tummy hurting & being in knots. Mine was too, till graceless posted his # One rule. My blood boiled over, his comment is so far off the mark, I could no longer be shy & silent. Love you!

    Liked by 5 people

  15. Gail,

    Grieve. That is a word that gracealone1 hasn’t figured out from his determinist god, small g god. His god doesn’t and can’t grieve. His god pre-planned abuse from the foundation of the earth, after all, his god is sovereign.

    There have been others that have posted on this blog such wording that my last paragraph states from his camp in regards to Julie Anne’s own childhood experiences. They “pray” that Julie Anne will come to her senses and find their god, and ditch her God, for their god planned that abuse for her own good, so that good will come out of it.

    I never knew of these kinds of strange religious beliefs, calling it Christian, in all my life until just a few very short years ago.

    Ed

    Liked by 6 people

  16. Oasis,

    I wish I could share some of my kittens with you. We are feeding 7 feral cats under the house, and five of them are kittens. At least they were feral. It’s amazing what some love (and food 🙂 ) can do. They let us pet them, hold them, and, sometimes, bring them in to the house. Love is such a powerful thing. Even a wild animal will respond. I’d rather have love (and kittens) any day.

    Liked by 6 people

  17. BTDT- Thank-You.

    I am only one voice among so many others…

    That said, I do appreciate your kindness.

    WE ALL HAVE BEEN THROUGH THE MILL, SO TO SPEAK…

    XOXO- GAIL

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Aw, thanks, Gail! I understand – my blood always boils when people transform our loving and holy (SEPARATE) God into the one who betrayed us the most- ah, trying not to go off on a tangent. Love you right back!

    BTDT, wish you could, too! Thank you for being a wonderful human being and loving those babies! I love what you said about love being such a powerful thing…it is, for sure. Love and kittens, forever and ever, ’til the end of time!…or something like that.

    Liked by 3 people

  19. Whoa.

    (ill-gotten diatribes) against those who would point them in the right direction.

    Who gets to choose which direction is right? (This hit a nerve, as I’m sure the elders of our ex-church wished for our ultimate “good” — as they defined it — and only wanted to point us in their “right direction” of legalism, with its intrinsic failure and despair.)

    As others have pointed out, #2 is twisted and misapplied.

    Reading about those saints in Hebrews who were sawn in half (thrown to lions? burned alive as torches to light a Roman emperor’s parties? torn by wild beasts?) — the wild beasts, the torturers, the executioners don’t appear to have been self-proclaimed christians. (If so, wouldn’t they have been sawn in half, burned, etc. alongside the rest?)

    I don’t see any scripture anywhere that calls for people calling themselves christians to persecute (abuse?) followers of Christ. In fact, the Lord himself had some harsh words for those who hinder little children.

    But other people have answered much more eloquently already, so I don’t need to say much more.

    Except… I pity gracealone1. What a sad and lonely place to be in. Embracing abuse, and disdaining comfort.

    2 Corinthians 1:3-7 speaks not only of suffering, but also of comfort

    Liked by 4 people

  20. (I’ll break this up in two, three posts so as not to overwhelm with one long one.)

    As just said on the old thread, I am neither an Arminian, a Calvinist, and I think TULIP and John Calvin are wrong.

    God is the one who designed salvation so that a human being has to choose for or against Jesus, and there is nothing meritorious about a person making the choice, which TULIPists such as GraceAlone1 apparently continue to believe. It’s not pelagianism.

    Salvation is by grace thru faith thru Christ, but you have to reach out and grab ahold of it to make it effective. God does not pick you in eternity past to be saved, you are not “elect” in that sense. God leaves it up to you if you want to spend eternity with him or not – you exercise your free will on that one.

    As for GA1’s comments about anger and bitterness. I did not read through the rest of the posts that were left in that other, previous thread after I was there the other day but based on the ones I saw, I don’t recall any anger or bitterness.

    As a recovered codependent, I say let the anger and bitterness hang out if it is what you feel. Even books by Christian therapists will tell you that suppressing anger is not healthy for your physical health or relationships.

    The Bible may recommend to folks not to hold on to anger and bitterness, but it does not condemn anger per se, or feeling that emotion. Jesus got angry and yelled at people, and if you are a Christian, he is your role model.

    Liked by 5 people

  21. GraceAlone1 said

    “In fact, it only does good for the one doling it out and accomplishes zero for the one who has been assaulted. Showing sympathy/empathy is not enough. Feeling sorry for another’s plight helps them how?”

    There’s nothing wrong with people in online communities supporting one another. Receiving empathy/ sympathy from the people here has helped me emotionally. It’s been a support system for me since my mother died and my external family either yells at me or ignores me.

    GA1, IMO, protests too strongly against being “warm and fuzzy.” I have minor quibbles with “warm and fuzzy” Christian types myself, but not to the extent this guy has.

    GA1 said,

    “Heads are being removed even today for the testimony of the Savior, but somehow we feel it our right to bemoan our situation to the point of disgusting self pity, meanwhile sucking the life out of those we call upon to feel the same pity as we”

    Also don’t care for people like GA1 (or this attitude) who compare your suffering to that of others, claims it’s not as bad or serious as other people’s, so he tells you essentially to suck it up and get over it.

    It’s very unsympathetic and rude, and I have encountered this attitude from countless self-professing Christians and one of my family members (yet this family member still expects me to have compassion for her and her problems).

    GA said, “1) Thank God for the whole experience, no matter how long the duration or how severe the trauma you were treated to.”

    Why? I’m not going to thank God for awful, painful things that have happened to me or people I know.

    GA said,

    “3) Ask God for wisdom as to how to handle each persecution. If you walk with Him on a daily basis this will become a no-brainer “

    I think this comment is wrong.
    For years and years I used to have anxiety attacks, depression, other issues, and all that “walking with Jesus” stuff (and prayer, Bible reading, etc) did nothing for me at all, it didn’t heal me of depression or anxiety. I finally escaped those problems (still have some anxiety but not as bad as before) by reading books by secular and Christian authors who were psychiatrists.

    Liked by 5 people

  22. Wow. Havent been active the last few weeks and missed what lead up to this, been very sick with chemo. My esophagus closed from sores and it has been no fun. I should probably read up before I say anything….but that’s not me. First, my heart goes out to all here and not here who are or have been in such great pain.

    Personally, the comment(s) from the commenter in question sound a lot like bully language to me. Julie Anne, you are on point to jump on this. I struggle every day and ask God for what he wants me to do or not do, and I mess up sometimes. Your comment about a rape victim is exactly on point.

    For 32 years I dealt with that, 18 as an investigator specializing in crimes against persons. One was too many, hundreds more on top of hundreds changed me. Trained by the FBI on profiling and verbal and written statement analysis I have big problems with what is in question. Funny, how the abusive “Christians” talk the same and are always right in what even great theologians still disagree on. What has impacted me more than anything is to study what Jesus actually did, really dig in to His actions on Earth. Talk is cheap. The “right” words can be said by anyone.

    Am I a Biblical expert, NO. But I’ve been in too many situations where there was no time for talk, just that closeness with God sometimes in seconds. Rough around the edges, yes. The more I study and pray I feel in good company. Being 6’4″ 275, martial arts , strong, all the gun stuff blah blah didn’t make me a good cop. God’s gifts of compassion, empathy and lack of judging did. Still, to be at the top of my career and wake up after a bad heart attack to find my appointed position gone, loss of community and friends for filing a W/C claim, on a heart transplant list, 54 times in the hospital the last 4 years, countless serious injuries over three decades, now cancer at a young age, I am so thankful to have people like here to really love and care about me. Wow.

    God brought me closer through people like you Julie Anne and others here. Every doctor I have says I should have been dead many times. I thought with God and my family I would be ok. Blessed. Enter the cultish abusive pastors, one in particular the year of my open heart talking and meeting with my wife for hundreds of hours a month without my knowledge, fill in the blanks yourself. I knew something was wrong but was not on my game, sorry struggling to breath most of the day, comas , chest pain not myself. They stole my family and you know what, some of the same words I read tonight, sickening. Yes, it has effected me reading this tonight. Not helping with the constant nasuea. Crying, yes. Not thin skinned. Their manipulation and interjecting themselves into my marriage, ordained by God!

    Yes, I think sometimes what I should not. It’s too soon to forgive. To do so would not be genuine as I face all this without my family and my wife of 25 years. How quickly you can go from hero to zero. Some people won’t get it until it happens to them. How easy it is to spout off “advice “. Why was I a cop, long story, beginning with horrendous childhood abuse supported by my mothers church. Bullies at best, evil I believe. All the pain in my life is but a drop in the bucket to losing my family aided by and manipulated by these wolves in sheeps clothing. Even though I was told I was released from Mathew 18 I still tried. Finally getting a meeting with one of them. Wow, did the true colors come out. I see it again tonight. Can’t remember the commenters name thanks to the poison in me. Nor the exact words.

    But I can say this, call me and judge me to be whatever you want. I truly have nothing left to lose. I don’t care. I only care what God thinks of me in all my ineptness and stupid mistakes. I certainly didn’t expect to get blindsided by so called men of god ( small g on purpose) I pray every day for God to show me the way because what’s left of the man in me sometimes is not good with these perverted abusers. I commit to God every day that no matter what happens next I will never lose my faith in Him. But it is another sad night. I am so thankful that God led me to an old post at your old site Julie Ann where I feel loved by so many. My heart is heavy and goes out to everyone hurting here. If that makes me warm and fuzzy so be it. Sorry so long, if uts too much please feel free to not allow it. Just had to say it.

    Liked by 5 people

  23. Knowing that my conversation with gracealone1 began on the other thread, the following is what I was discussing to Darrel in regards to rules, specifically in regards to the word “commandments”, for which he, and most Calvinists just don’t seem to understand.

    Romans 13:8-10
    8 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.

    9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

    10 Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.

    NOTE: It is not love plus, but rather love only.

    Ed

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Comparing spiritual abuse with persecution is an apples and oranges comparison. Spiritual abuse happens frequently in America, in my estimation, because of the multitude of self-appointed clergy on every two street blocks. Inevitably, you get some horse’s butt who likes to treat the flock like crap and takes verses about obedience out of context. But gracelone1 thinks we must grin and bear it because someone on the other side of the globe is being unjustly persecuted.

    Well, tell that to John, who, in III John, publicly called out and promised to address the abuse of a man named Diotrephes, What he did NOT do was tell the people to shut up and stop complaining because Christians elsewhere were getting murdered.

    When I was leaning towards Calvinism because of a few convincing arguments that I was, at the time, unable to wrap my head around, I was thankfully deterred by a few folks like “grace”alone1. It is the general perceived and public nastiness of many Calvinists, such as Doug Phillips, Doug Wilson, Phil Johnson, JD Hall, Miano, Chuck O’Neal, etc. etc. that made me examine what it was about this particular brand of theology that seemed to bring out this sort of seemingly jerkish behavior in some. Ultimately, I came to the conclusion that these types are so hung up on the soteriology of their theology, that they often ignore the very basic commands of Scripture regarding how we treat others. And it is ultimately this, in my opinion, warped view of the sovereignty of God, that leads many to tell people crazy things, like to be thankful for being abused (because we are all really dirty rotten scum that God doesn’t like and we deserve it.) And it tells yet others that they must be tyrants and patriarchs in their home. And it even tells a few warped people from Westboro Baptist Church that they must protest soldiers funerals and say vile things.

    I’m done with Calvinism. It is, in its modern form, even on the nicest ends of the spectrum, a screwed up philosophy that aids many people to turn into absolute jackasses. It says, God sovereignly chose ME, and I am special, and you are not. So I will treat you all like crap until you see things MY way and prove to me that you are special like ME. And the worst part of it all, is that they people truly are being “Christians” in the sense of being Christ-like. Because the Christ they have warped in their theology is a mean God who commands all men, everywhere to repent, and then refuses to give them the ability to do so. That’s like beating your 1 year old kid for not being able to read and write.

    Liked by 3 people

  25. What does it even mean to say that one is not a Calvinist but TULIP is the correct theology? Umm..I hate to break it to you sir, but by definition, you are a Calvinist.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. “Some people won’t get it until it happens to them.”

    This is so true, John. So true. It would be nice if places like SSB didn’t even have to exist.

    Hope your body can rest and heal from the last round of chemo.

    Liked by 3 people

  27. John,

    My heart is hurting for you this morning, reading this comment. I am sorry that you are battling against cancer. I am so, so sorry that your family has abandoned you. I am sorry that your church family betrayed and stole from you. Dear brother in Christ, though it may not be much, I am grieving with and alongside you.

    Liked by 7 people

  28. Quick comment before I head off to bed:

    Julie Anne, I’m amazed that you let this gracealone/Darrel guy continue for as long as he did. If it were me, I’d have put him in the doghouse long ago. He obviously has no clue what it’s like to be abused.

    Much strength to you, sister.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Larry, well said.
    “Comparing spiritual abuse with persecution is an apples and oranges comparison. Spiritual abuse happens frequently in America, in my estimation, because of the multitude of self-appointed clergy on every two street blocks. Inevitably, you get some horse’s butt who likes to treat the flock like crap and takes verses about obedience out of context. But gracelone1 thinks we must grin and bear it because someone on the other side of the globe is being unjustly persecuted.”

    This is so true. I compare it to the way most of were brought up to “do what the doctor says”, never question them, they might get upset if you ask for a second opinion etc. WRONG! You better question and ask, it’s your life. I have so many AWESOME doctors but have also fired some.

    You are so right about self appointed! So much damage done. In my situation it is an independent church, chosen by my wife right after my health nosedived. My alarms were going off but wearing an external defibrillator vest ( they won’t implant one for 90 days because if insurance) and and being preoccupied with breathing, my heart just stopping for 10 seconds or so, get the point I wasn’t at my fullest, cognitively with damage from complete organ failure. Yes this is a pitch to all of you, please don’t tough things out, get checked. Please don’t be like me.

    Off subject, sorry, now the chemo has caused chemo brain and I lose track, sorry. Anyway, indie church, no elders, no board no accountability, grown 40 year old men talking and acting like teenagers. One a graduated baptist minister, one Wesleyan graduated minister, the alpha one, a self appointed ex bill collector turned semi “Christian rock singer ” kicked out of a big church for having an affair with a secretary while married. When I spoke with the lead pastor I was blown away at how quickly the real him came out. He turned like I have seen so many evil rapists etc with contorted face, changed voice and verbal attacks. When I pointed out the slick “non profit corporation they had set up with no accountability except from God, this preacher went nuts and said ” don’t you dare be abusive and bring God into this.” What????? I said God has been in this all along and he went crazy. The rock singer turned preacher,the one who really rubs things lives next door to me! He has twice threatened to “kick my ass”.

    While having a defibrillator, a two four scar from heart and stomach surgery, an ileostomy bag hanging on my stomach, after losing 80 pounds , big man. Wake up last week and on the way to Chemo and I see a for sale sign. It’s my wife’s! She’s a realtor. Broke down. They defend there outrageous no policy of talking with women alone as long as they want whenever, I’m talking 2 and 3 hour calls at 2 am etc. he said Jesus talked to women alone, my reply, you are not Jesus. This is like a nightmare. It’s not believable.

    Thank you Larry for a very informative comment.

    Like

  30. BeenThereDoneThat, thank you. I should have added probably wouldn’t get it if it did happen to them. Thank you for your kindness and concern so much.

    Nomoreperfect, thank you so much for your kindness . Thank you for walking along side with me. I have to say, Gods timing with finding this place was perfect. I was there, at my end and I read an old post of Julie Anne’s , she answered an email with such genuine kindness and the love of Christ, I joined and have never felt so accepted and loved! Thank you and I will do the same with you!

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Somehow it strikes me that the examples of Hymenaeus, Alexander, Diotrophes, and others listed as having caused problems in the New Testament ought to guide us. Now there is plenty of room for interpretation in these stories–Paul and John probably purposefully leave a lot of the details out for our edification–but we might infer a few things.

    1. Regrettably, due to our sin natures, there will be various sins committed within the church. We will characterize some of those sins as spiritual abuse–Diotrophes and Judas seem to be some of the clearest examples. Perhaps also Peter rejecting the Gentiles in Acts could come to mind as well.

    2. I infer a certain degree of irritation or anger in Paul and John as they write about these people–Christ too. I don’t think you say “it would have been better for him if he had never been born” without something of an edge to it. Not soulless Mr. Rogers by any stretch of the imagination.

    3. The results; OK, Diotrophes put people out of the Church–seems like some permanent harm done there, as the ancients do not appear to have readmitted believers as readily as we to today. Paul found himself alone and in chains in part due to the actions of spiritual abusers.

    4. The response; sometimes (Judias, Ananiah, Sapphira) it was punished by God, other times the leaders of the church appear to have stepped in (Diotrephes).

    Like

  32. Serving Kids in Japan said:

    Julie Anne, I’m amazed that you let this gracealone/Darrel guy continue for as long as he did. If it were me, I’d have put him in the doghouse long ago. He obviously has no clue what it’s like to be abused.

    Well, a couple of things were going on. I was in Portland playing and wasn’t reading comments very carefully. I saw a healthy debate going on and this group tends to self-monitor (for the most part).

    When I got back home and read in more detail, I saw what was going on. Interestingly, take a look at the first comment from Darrel/gracealone1 on the JD thread:

    Having read JD’s “apology” from last year (not all of it, I could only stomach so much) he comes across as the typical narcissistic big-shot (self-appointed) “preacher”. He’s been out of the lime-light for a few months and is having ego withdrawals, and so he’s back. Bottom line: he’s just another fraud, no matter how “orthodox” he claims his doctrine to be. To be certain, there are NO nationally prominent ‘preachers’ worth a hoot, they are ALL compromised whether by doctrine or those with whom they associate (yes, there most definitely is ‘guilt by association’ see 2Cor. 6″11-18).

    I think there’s a lot of truth in the above comment . . . but then it turned.

    This is kind of like what some of us have experienced in abusive churches. We were lured in by some truth and then it turned south. I like to give readers the opportunity to challenge people when they see something off (because they couldn’t without bad consequences in their churches). Of course there are far more readers than contributors to the thread, but they can see it all taking place and you can be sure some are saying in their minds, “Yea, what she/he said!” LOL

    Anyway, having a group of people sharing their concerns is helpful in discerning someone who is feeding us dangerous nonsense and that’s just what happened. Bravo!

    Liked by 3 people

  33. I have been away for a while, and….wow! I had no idea this was going on at the other thread. I also let this sit for a while before responding. I don’t want to respond in kind, but here are some thoughts.

    In regard to points 1 and 2, what bothers me the most is the attempt to minimize a person’s experience. I once heard someone say that we all have our boulders to roll. Yours may be bigger or smaller than mine, but we are rolling it all the same. Meaning that we all have problems and issues that we deal with. When someone tries to say that your problem isn’t as bad as…. it minimizes the problem that is being faced. So, for gracealone1 to suggest that a person’s experience “isn’t as bad” as a person being beheaded for their faith is ridiculous. While the latter is horrible, we do not deal with that situation in a country where the majority religion is Christianity.

    A person’s experience should never be minimized.

    The other thing that I noticed by gracealone1, and so many other like him, is the use of the words “bitter” and “hatred.” These words easily fly off of the tongue (or fingertips) of people like him as a response to someone who is sharing their experience or insight about faith. When I see words like this as a come-back response, I immediately will dismiss that person. Sorry, gracealone1, but most of us here have heard all of your rhetoric so many times and it doesn’t help us forget the actions and words by family, friends, or church folks who are abusive.

    Our experiences are worth talking about. We may forgive, but we will never forget. What good would forgetting do? It’s what keeps our head actively engaged and alert to people in our lives and the surroundings we find ourselves in.

    I am always amazed at what keeps people like gracealone1 around a blog (or the SSB FB page) such as this. Does he think that if he says these things a switch will flip in us and we will suddenly realize that we are in the wrong? I am all for healthy debate on topics. But if the participants are not respectful to each other, then it’s not worth debating.

    Liked by 5 people

  34. Haven’t read all the comments but wow! I’m nauseous after reading this comment from Gracealone1 (the name isn’t fitting the comment).

    BTW – He says things in his comment that don’t seem to apply to how his friends are continuing to treat Ergun Caner.

    Liked by 2 people

  35. “I think there’s a lot of truth in the above comment . . . but then it turned.”

    It turned in a vicious way, too.

    The rhetoric was eerily familiar to me. Many abusers are too sociopathic to say such things publicly. They know exactly how it’s going to sound to others. They usually reserve it for the one they’re targeting, and put on the charming persona for everyone else. This is sort of a case study of what some of us have endured in private.

    Liked by 6 people

  36. On the other blog post, there was one person that was “liking” graceonly1’s comments, just one. The name was “Lyn”. I clicked on the icon of Lyn, and it tells me that the account was deleted. Interesting.

    Ed

    Like

  37. The name “Grace” was in:

    Beaverton Grace Bible Church
    Sovereign Grace Ministries

    There was no grace in BGBC. I heard there was no grace at SGM. A lot of people on Twitter say on their profile, “Sinner, saved by grace” and I notice their behavior is graceless. It seems when I see people highlight “grace,” I see little of it. However, when people don’t highlight it, I see evidence of it. Why is this?

    Liked by 3 people

  38. BTW, if you sense things are going in a bad direction, please do not hesitate to e-mail me. Sometimes I am only able to skim the comments and could easily miss what you all are seeing plainly.

    Liked by 2 people

  39. Another interesting tidbit of “Lyn” was that her gravatar account is called “unworthy1”. It’s unfortunate that Christians are told how unworthy that they are, when in fact, we are so precious to God that he paid an ultimate price to get us. We must have been worth something for him to fight for us for his possession. So all this talk about our unworthiness is hogwash.

    Ed

    Liked by 2 people

  40. John,

    I always look for your comments on Sunday SSB. It is sad to hear how things continue to be so difficult for you. Thank-You for sharing yourself with us, as Lydia said, I wish we could do more for you. Now if you were in Michigan, Brenda & I could keep you company when you have chemo, it is heart breaking that you are the only patient alone when getting your treatment. Prayers for you buddy.

    Liked by 2 people

  41. Gracealone1 – I would like to see your reactions if you discovered your Christian Sunday School teacher was having sex with your 10 year old daughter, and then threatening her he would hurt her family if she told. Seriously…..rage is justified. Sometimes you Calvinists ought to look a little more into the Old Testament to see how God himself dealt with evil. Yes, He is gracious, but woe to them who claim to know Him and abuse others. Really, get a life, get off the blog circuit and start showing some compassion to others.

    Liked by 5 people

  42. chapmaned24 on January 7, 2015 at 9:53 AM

    Did you see the comments on the current article at that site and who wrote them?

    Like

  43. “Accursed Free Will Gospel”, Lyn states.

    I know Ephesians pretty well. And indeed I know sentence structure.

    We are saved by grace thru faith, not of ourselves, lest any man should boast.

    It is OUR faith, not a God imputed faith. That is what the word THROUGH.

    Not of ourselves is discussing the LAW OF MOSES. The law of Moses is WORKING for salvation. We don’t work. Grace is a free gift to those who believe, and God does not impute faith.

    Faith is NOT A WORK. The law of Moses is about work, and is NOT OF FAITH.

    Faith is not a work. When it is stated “not of ourselves” it is discussing the Law of Moses, period.

    These guys just don’t get it.

    I could continue in regards to all of their pet words, too, in regards to “choose”, “chosen”, “chose”, “predestination”, “elect”, “election”, and any other word that they use.

    It’s not about a word. It’s about the sentence structure in the paragraph, not just the sentence in the paragraph, either.

    They talk about exegesis all the time. But they are terrible at it.

    Ed

    Liked by 3 people

  44. One important observation that we usually see in situations like this is that there is little attention given to victims. Jesus went after that one sheep. He cared about the wounded. When He got to the wounded, did He tell them how sinful they were? That they should be ashamed of themselves?

    Liked by 3 people

  45. “It seems when I see people highlight “grace,” I see little of it.”

    I can only think of one exception at the moment– Boz Tchividjian’s G.R.A.C.E.

    Liked by 2 people

  46. Now while I’ve noticed our hostess’ comment about those who use the word “grace” often “protesting too much” (if I remember the Bard correctly on this), it’s worth noting as well that Paul uses the word a lot, too. I’m a touch reluctant to accuse St. Paul of this. :^)

    (I noticed and acknowledge the correlation, but let’s not take it too far as a sign that anyone who uses “grace” prominently lacks it)

    But more to the point, it’s worth noting that the big problem with the comment that is the header here is that it does not (per my first comment here) really deal with those who have been spiritually abused–it’s pious sounding rhetoric, but really doesn’t tell us anything about real Biblical examples of spiritual fraud and abuse like Diotrephes, Alexander, Hymeneaus (sp?), Judas, Ananias, and the like.

    Hence, “gracealone” misses the fact that the pain of Christ, Paul, and John appears to have been very real, and then the ways they dealt with it. What he substitutes is more or less a Stoic “suck it up”. No weeping with those who weep, morning with those who mourn for us. If you’re not able to shake it off, you’re less spiritual.

    It is as if Jesus came to Lazarus’ tomb and instead of weeping Himself (despite the miracle He was about to perform!), he told everybody to cut out the waterworks.

    Now I could perhaps go further and try to make a case that he’s infringing on grace, concentrating on works, but …..I wonder if I might do better simply to say

    Sir, I disagree, and Biblically, this is why.

    Liked by 2 people

  47. Gracealone clearly does not understand God’s intent for marriage at all.

    Marriage was never intended to be a form of bondage or torment, or to provide an environment to invite suffering for the sake of Christ. No, marriage is intended to be a respite from the world, a relationship where unity and a mutual, loving bond is formed and is evident, the very image of the love between Christ and His bride, the church.

    Why do we have marriage vows at all if they mean nothing? Love, honor and cherish can just as easily be replaced with torment, torture and castigate and presume that the bond is still attuned to God’s will? Appalling. Do you not know why God provided divorce in the law? He did so to free spouses from the hard-hearted, to uphold the sanctity of marriage Hebrews 13 says that “Marriage is to be highly esteemed among all…” Held in high honor and dignity. Not merely the office of marriage, but God’s design for it.

    “Grace” would attempt to see equanimity between what we may endure at the hands of an unbelieving world with the unwarranted cruelty of a spouse, in hypocritical defiance of the love that should flow between a husband and his bride? No, Ephesians 5 sets the biblical model before us. ” So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself;
    for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church, because we are members of His body.” You cannot treat your spouse with hatred and conclude that is God’s will for marriage. Furthermore, the one who claims God’s name and does not love is both a liar and a hypocrite and should be confronted and cast out as such – not enabled.

    I John 1:6 says, ” If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth…”

    I John 2:4: “The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him…”

    I John 2:9: “The one who says he is in the Light and yet hates his brother is in the darkness until now.”

    Enough said.

    Liked by 2 people

  48. This is kind of like what some of us have experienced in abusive churches. We were lured in by some truth and then it turned south.

    Yes, so true! At least, in our experience. I remember one thing that wooed me in our ex-church was that they were the only ones (at the time we were checking them out) we ran across who encouraged me to be a stay-at-home mom. Everyone else seemed to be saying that children are better off being cared for by professionally trained daycare workers and teachers, and women are wasted at home when they could be fulfilling themselves and contributing to society through work outside the home.

    It was only much later that I realized I’d been indoctrinated into the idea that the *only* “biblical” place for a woman, single or married, was in the home, under the thumb authority of a man.

    Liked by 2 people

  49. John, I am praying for you. May the Lord comfort you and guard your heart and mind with His peace that is beyond our understanding, but very real for all that.

    Liked by 1 person

  50. @JulieAnne:

    The name “Grace” was in:

    Beaverton Grace Bible Church
    Sovereign Grace Ministries

    There was no grace in BGBC.

    Sounds like the TV Trope “People’s Republic of Tyranny”.
    Where the more adjectives about “Democracy” there are in a country’s official name, the nastier a dictatorship it is.

    Liked by 1 person

  51. Right On, Tim!!

    Here is another:

    John 15:13 (KJV)
    13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

    Friends. So much for knocking warm and fuzzy. Jesus loves his friends.

    Here, from Jesus red letter Bibles, he shows his ONE commandment, which is his commandments. So, Jesus said it, John said it, and Paul said it. Can we say, confirmation? Commandments, plural, is Commandment, singular.

    10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.

    11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

    12 THIS IS MY COMMANDMENT, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.

    13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

    14 Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.

    15 Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.

    Friends are not unworthy.

    For Lyn, if she is still listening, YOU are not unworthy. Change your nick name to FRIENDTOJESUS. You are worthy. Jesus went after YOU, the lost sheep that he loved before you became lost, and even while you were lost.

    Ed

    Liked by 2 people

  52. Ed, even James (who might be labeled the sternest of apostles!) reiterated it: “If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself,’ you are doing right.” (James 2:8.) So Jesus, his brother, his close friend and the guy he smacked off a horse on the road to Damascus all get warm and fuzzy – love, love, love.*

    Tim

    * “All together now – love. love, love …”

    Liked by 1 person

  53. Thank you all for your kind comments. It is most encouraging to know that I can direct anyone to this site who is a sinner in need of the Savior and they will find many saviors (none of which can help them). Since I am a sinner of the worst sort I appreciate being told that there is forgiveness waiting for me if I will only confess my sins to the Lord Jesus. Your gentleness in handling my most egregious sins against you and God will doubtless find their way to the archives of heaven for viewing by all throughout eternity as the template for dealing with people you despise. You are a special people to your god (little ‘g’) and have performed according to the specifications of your father (little ‘f’). You have successfully duplicated the very thing that this site purportedly (but no longer) was set up to counter: spiritual abuse. You have become what you say you despise. May it please the Lord to forgive those of you who are His.

    Liked by 1 person

  54. I normally give a more direct warning, but your last comment went over the top for me, Darrel.

    Using sarcasm, an attitude of spiritual arrogance, and God’s Word as a weapon are not welcome here. Your behavior shows that you would rather beat wounded people with rudeness rather than show loving concern. You are now officially in the doghouse. Any comment you make will have to be approved by a moderator.

    dog house

    Liked by 2 people

  55. gracealone1,

    In your religion, if we are not saved, it’s because it’s your gods will. So, if it’ your gods will, then what are you wasting your breath here for? If your god wants us saved, he will save us, right? If your god is not going to save us, then he won’t, right?

    And since your god is sovereign, then you have no say in any of the matter, and according to you, we can’t make a decision anyway.

    So, dust your feet and move on to another victim of your nastiness. There are plenty of websites out there that you have posted on from your own tribe that wants nothing to do with you. You stir trouble with your own people, as well.

    You have some serious issues that go well beyond religion.

    Ed

    Liked by 2 people

  56. “I am a sinner of the worst sort….” Oh, woe is me!

    The only thing that self-degredation produces upon me is a very long eye roll.

    To second what Ed said – “It’s unfortunate that Christians are told how unworthy that they are, when in fact, we are so precious to God that he paid an ultimate price to get us. We must have been worth something for him to fight for us for his possession. So all this talk about our unworthiness is hogwash.”

    Liked by 4 people

  57. Over on another blog, Darrel had said the following:

    “That’s all we are called to do is sow and water, but it is God who gives the increase.”

    My thoughts on that:

    Based on his own posts here and in other places, it seems to me that he is seriously angry at god for not giving the increase, because he feels that he sowed and watered as god required of him, but he lashes out at those to whom he has sown and watered, because they refuse to believe what he believes. If his god is as sovereign as he states, then why is he trying to be god in forcing us to believe, when according to his beliefs, that’s the job of his god, not him.

    It’s as if he is screaming in anger at his “sovereign” god, “MAKE THEM LISTEN TO ME!”

    So, who is he really angry at? Us for not believing his version, since his god is the only one who can impute faith, or is he angry at his sovereign god for not imputing the faith upon us for us to agree with him?

    In my experience with debating Calvinists, or in his case, TULIP without Calvin, MOST, not all, but MOST of them are extremely angry people who lash out at the depraved, all the while preaching a sovereign god that tells us that we are too stupid to have faith on our own free will anyway. Well, if god is sovereign, as they say, then why do they get so blood boiling angry at those who do not believe in what they believe? If it is their gods will that we are not saved, shouldn’t they be happy about that? But instead, they are so angry. Blood boiling angry.

    One thing that I can say about the Jehovah’s Witnesses, even tho they knock on your door, they are peaceful people, and they don’t get angry at us for not believing in their doctrines. Mormons, the same. Mormons even ask if there is anything that they can “DO” for you before they depart. Mormons have more love in their hearts than gracealone1’s religion. But, gracealone1, what’s love got to do with it, huh?

    Ed

    Liked by 2 people

  58. Kathi, Very well said!

    Lydia00 thank you so much!

    Gail thank you again. You make me feel so welcome and loved! Sorry, this weekend was spent mostly at the ER. I missed everyone on Sunday. Praying for you also. Thank you for your kindness!
    Cindy burrell well said. What you said really helped me with false guilt I have been tormented with in my failed marriage. Thank you
    Refugee, thank you again for your compassion and making me feel like I belong with a special group of people!
    Julie Ann, you amaze me. Thank you for all you do so well! Thank you for your courage!

    Liked by 2 people

  59. Gracealone1, Wow. Bully tactics. In my 5th time at the hospital and cancer center since Saturday from complications I watched helplessly as a woman coded in the chair in front of me today during her first chemo treatment. I find myself wanting to dissect your last comment word for word but it is not worth it, you proved everyone’s concerns and points. It is not worth my time and I don’t like to “pile on”. I wonder, why are you here? Does it bring you pleasure to hurt people already hurt who have a place to belong , to and share, worship God, and walk along side each other? Not every hurt person is easily bullied. I will not spend anymore of my time reading or addressing your comments. I hope you realize that it’s your choice to offend, you could easily change it and be welcome.

    Liked by 2 people

  60. Well, John, even when I was in church I could never bring myself to sing the songs that were all about how wretched we are without Jesus. If our lives and souls are so wretched, that means that Jesus’ love was all for nothing.

    Liked by 2 people

  61. “I’m done with Calvinism. It is, in its modern form, even on the nicest ends of the spectrum, a screwed up philosophy that aids many people to turn into absolute jackasses. It says, God sovereignly chose ME, and I am special, and you are not.”

    Amen!! “We’re the Elect, and you’re not.” And: “Our poop don’t stink, but yours does.”

    Wow, I haven’t visited here in ages. This was quite a thread to come back to, LOL.

    Gail and John, God bless you both. Praying for you!

    OK, I confess that I have a few very nice Calvinist friends, on Facebook and in Real Life. Sometimes people are better than their creed, I guess. But I’ve also encountered more than my share of truly obnoxious Calvinists, mostly online. For them I have composed this little piece of doggerel:

    When you’re Elect,
    You’re Elect all the way,
    From your first teeny sect
    To your last PCA.

    [Or vice versa!]

    When you’re Elect,
    You can give people sh!t.
    They’re depraved,
    And you’re saved,
    So that justifies it.

    You don’t have to work
    Through trial and tribulation.
    So just be a jerk
    And trust Predestination
    For your salvation!

    Then you are set
    With a capital E,
    Which allows you to vet
    Every person you see.

    When you’re Elect, you stay Elect!

    ———–

    “Don’t pinch it; it’s copyright.” — Psmith in *Leave It to Psmith*

    Liked by 2 people

  62. Kathi, I agree. I would look around and see mouths moving, but hearts dying.

    John,
    That was what I saw at our ex-church in the months before we left. Ten years ago, we truly could rock the place with our singing — four part harmony, descants and all. I was too miserable, the past few years, to notice a transition — but in our last six months there, when we were discussing leaving in our family, and the last few holdouts were starting to come around, I started paying attention again. I noticed that the music sounded subdued somehow. No one was singing out. No impromptu descants. Some dutiful-sounding harmonizing, but most people quietly singing the melody line.

    I could use that as a starting point for some pondering, drawing parallels, maybe a devotional or spiritual lesson (and maybe adding 2+2 and getting 5), but I won’t. Suffice it to say, maybe I wasn’t the only one going through the motions in numbness, or at best, quiet desperation.

    Liked by 1 person

  63. Julie Anne said,

    I’m still trying to understand how one can believe in the Doctrines of Grace and TULIP and not be Calvinist. Another newfangled doctrine?

    I have seen others make the same point. They say they believe in TULIP but not Calvinism, or some get into saying they are 4 pointers not 5 pointers.

    Some of them seem to believe that Calvinism today is distorted and not how Calvin first taught it… some go the opposite and from what other Calvinists say, some other Calvinists are more gung ho about certain things than Calvin even was (they say if Calvin were transported to our day, he would not agree with stuff that is being taught in his name).

    Some guys at other blogs insist there is a difference between Reformed Theology and Calvinism, that a person can be Reformed without being a Calvinist, but to me, they are the same thing.

    Liked by 1 person

  64. John, you said something that struck me so powerfully: “Being 6’4″ 275, martial arts , strong, all the gun stuff blah blah didn’t make me a good cop. God’s gifts of compassion, empathy and lack of judging did”.
    Oh, this is so important, & this is a big piece of what harsh,unloving, graceless people don’t get. They are so utterly blind to the needs, the emotions, of other people, & then they create a “god” in their own image. They don’t want the God of the Bible; they want a god who plays favorites, who judges cruelly & unjustly, because that is who they are. By setting up an idol called “god”, they are able to pretend to be better than the rest of humanity.
    But, of course, this leaves them in a sticky wicket, because the one & only true God came to earth, took on our weakness, & suffered & died to save us from that horrible pagan deity whom they imagine to be their personal property…….

    Liked by 1 person

  65. OK, I was done, & then it hit me: People , if you want to see where this “theology” leads, drop by your local library or bookstore, seek out Fyodor Dostoevski’s The Brothers Karamazov, & read (or re-read) the chapter called “The Grand Inquisitor”. In that chapter, the author looks into the hearts & souls of those whose “god” is made in their own image, & imagines that Christ Jesus returns to this earth….and the “holier than thou, I’m elect & you’re not crew”, & instead of welcoming Him with psalms of joyous faith & love….

    They kill Him.
    The Inquisitor tells Jesus that they’re very sorry & all that, but that they can’t let Him destroy their neat, tidy, religious system, so He ends being crucified all over again. By people who call themselves “Christian”.

    Like

Thanks for participating in the SSB community. Please be sure to leave a name/pseudonym (not "Anonymous"). Thx :)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s