Troll Tuesday

So here we are. Below are some of the letters I have received, along with my responses. Pardon our dust and all that. The comments are enabled for this post only, and so feel free to interact. Consider this Open Thread Tuesday, with perhaps the occasional Troll Tuesday. But please mind your Ps and Qs, My responses are indented and italicized, and will conclude with DJW. I am publishing the first name of the letter writer, unless the letter makes it obvious that I ought not to. If this works out, I can also turn the Content Cluster that runs on Thursday into an open thread as well. DJW

No, no, no. Part of the education here has been the followup conversation, comment and even fellowship that has taken place in the comment section. Unless your blog readers are asking for a change, don’t make one. Who is complaining about the trolls? Are you attempting to leave the world in order to avoid them? If you find monitoring this comment section a burden, find someone who knows what they are doing to monitor and manage the comments and followup conversations with gladness. Much of the encouragement I have received has come by other people’s interaction in the comments with your articles. You are not always able to respond personally to the concerns and questions – or the fears of those who read your blog. But the commenters have and I have valued their input. I have also valued the ease with which I could make my thoughts known and they could reply. The trolls brought us so much joy, so much vindication and so many examples of the problems you have described in this blog. Has this become a holy place that we must shut them out? You will always have the trolls among you. We are not threatened, we are not deterred, and we are not afraid. The whole point of the gospel was to make access easy to Truth and Grace. If Jesus was willing to suffer the inconvenience of flesh shouldn’t we suffer the inconvenience of trolls who live in the flesh? In attempting to remove the trolls, you may also remove or dislodge some of the Fellowship we have enjoyed as believers. Go back to using Disqus – please – and stop your nonsense, Doug :-)

David

David, yes, I was asked to consider shutting off comments by people who read my blog regularly. And the responses after the fact have divided pretty clearly down the middle. Some feel as you do, while others, as you will see below, were most grateful. DJW

Re: Farewell, Comments, Hello Letters Comments allow interaction. Please don’t disable. Yes, some of the commenters are trolls. Please get a moderator instead.

Bro. Steve

Steve, if we take into account the wages I would be able to pay, the moderator would have to be a drunk chimpanzee, which would not help us in elevating the tone. DJW

Probably wise move to disable comments.

Atticus

Atticus, thanks. Yes, I think so. But I hope to have an available open thread a time or two every week, and we will see how that goes. If we figure out how to turn on the comments for one post at a time, as I believe we have done, that will start today. And as for these published letters, as I post them, this will increase my ability to interact with readers, not decrease it.

Yay, a means of asking a question without posting it publicly! I’ve read Bahnsen’s argumentative works (Theonomy in Christian Ethics, By This Standard, No Other Standard), but don’t know of any works that deal with the present-day applications of OT Law. I.e., what would a Romans 13-type minister advocate as case law principles in our day and age as a “Theonomist.” Or, how does a Theonomist “engage” the culture and political arena today? If you (Doug) or your screener could point me to 2-3 works that address that, I’d be most thankful!

Name Withheld for Obvious Reasons

I would start with Richard Baxter’s Christian Directory (as a resource). I would also read Rushdoony’s Institutes of Biblical Law. Other works of Protestant casuistry like Davis’s Evangelical Ethics are good. DJW.

Obviously this is your forum and I am confident in you to lead as you see fit. I will say that I have found the comments section to be infuriating/boring but also really helpful to see the faithful dispose objections that you would never have the ime to do. So I would vote for at least some open comment threads.

Mike

Yes, we are going to try to have open comment threads. See above. DJW

Doug, I don’t know if it would be used much, but you might consider weekly, or biweekly, open threads. Over the years I have had some very interesting conversations here that were only marginally related to the original post, and it would be nice to keep a forum for that. Also, you should throw caution to the wind and list your “25 or so” favorite commenters so they will know that their voice is requested. I, for one, appreciate your continued work maintaining this blog. So… thanks! P.S for those of us squeamish about having our meatspace identity all over the web, you might make it clear whether anonymous/screen named letters are approved

Demo

Demo, the problem I have with listing the 25 or so commenters is that I know I would live someone important out, and then I would be sad. DJW

Well, a man’s blog is his castle, so let the dissenters cry.

Blake

Blake, thanks. Everyone should keep in mind that it is still possible for you all to repost something I write on Facebook, and have your discussion there. Or if you don’t want to post on Facebook, I usually do. But when an obnoxious thread breaks out on Facebook, it is not the kind of thing that people then attribute to my tolerances or sentiments. It is not happening in my living room, in other words. DJW

Doug, I understand your decision, but disagree with it. Similar to others I come to your blog both to read your posts and to read the discussion that follows. The discussion is edifying because of the high number of thoughtful commenters on the site. And although I very rarely comment here (or anywhere else), I look forward to reading those commenters as much as I do your posts. The opportunity to write letters to you will certainly keep you in touch with some of them, but will cut many of us off from their wit and wisdom. I hope you reconsider or consider an alternative. Best regards

James

James, thanks. I hope this will suffice for an alternative. DJW

I think this is a great idea. You write great posts and then the stupid threads start and it gets boring trying to find a comment worth reading.

Melody

Melody, others have felt the same. DJW

I understand the idea. I think it probably will have the effect of reducing readership. Being able to comment on a piece of media has become an essential part of our culture’s consumption of media and when that is taken away (e.g. CNN.com), it has the effect of driving readership to places where they can interact. I have noticed myself doing this. Never as a boycott…. only as part of the habitual way that I interact online. I go where I can enjoy commenting, adding my two cents, and interacting. But I wish you the best. I have enjoyed this blog almost as long as it has existed and definitely do plan to keep up. And I hope I am wrong because I think your voice is an important one that the world needs to hear.

Will

Will, one of the things I will be monitoring is what this will do to my traffic. Because this was a judgment call, and not a matter of biblical principle, the practical impact should be taken into consideration. DJW

Dear Doug. I understand the decision, and it certainly declutters your site/blog. It is a repellent feature of modern life that so many individuals find it within themselves to spew unhelpful, and often profoundly disagreeable comment. I often scan straight to the comments in order to determine how a given article is being received. That, in turn is an indicator of whether or not to repost an item. But then, I think that there is a value in this. The comments are a window onto worldviews. It is possible for Christians to see how they really ought not to be interacting with others. And hopefully, perhaps without too much mindless optimism, it is an opportunity for unbelievers to look in and see how Christians engage with each other. Yes, I know. There’s always the possibility that your own side will let you down. That’s the risk. I respect your decision, but I think there was value here. Other than that, God bless what you’re doing, and please keep doing it. Bests,

Kevin

Kevin, thanks. I do want to protect that which was of value. We will see how that part of it goes. DJW.

In response to “Farewell, Comments, Hello Letters”: Thank you very much. I eventually had to leave the comments alone since there was so little fear of God in sight. This is a very helpful change.

Blessings, Keith

Keith, thank you. DJW

Show Outline with Links

Conservative Colleges

Mr. Wilson (not of Dennis the Menace fame):

Your post regarding Dr. Throckmorton is timely for our family–having just last weekend visited GCC with our homeschooled, senior son.  I was not aware of Dr. Throckmorton or his efforts to thread homosexuality through the Christian needle. But I do question whether a committed reformed Christian should simply avoid GCC. Here are a few facts (at least as I understand them) as a preface to:

GCC is far from unified in its support of Dr. Throckmorton.  In fact many oppose his theological “insights”.

GCC has an excellent mechanical engineering program, the major our son desires to study.

Despite the tares who might support Dr. Throckmorton, I believe there is still vital, orthodox Christian wheat at GCC. Thus, it would have some advantages over a fully secular school with a good engineering program.

In summary, I am thinking of the part of the Confession where even the church acknowledges that she will always be subject to “mixture and error.” How much more can we expect affiliated Christian “ministries” to be subject to such mixture and error? I am not suggesting your assessment of Dr. Throckmorton is wrong–in fact I agree with your assessment. I am not sure that I share your broad diagnosis of avoiding GCC. Study psychology there? Perhaps not. But why would anyone study that pseudo-science in the first place.  ;-)

I am open to your response and willing to hear why you might think I am wrong or too lax in viewing this matter.

Best to you,

Doug Myers

Doug, I know there are good people at Grove City, and I wrote what I did to strengthen their hand, not weaken it. I hope it does so. But you have to understand that colleges will only respond to two fundamental pressure points—money that comes from enrollment and money that comes from donors. And the downward trajectory of so many Christian colleges shows that the lag time between the first obvious signs of apostasy and the subsequent crisis in enrollment and donations is far too long. And students at a secular school know that their instructors are hostile to true biblical faith. At a Christian school, they often don’t know, and don’t have their guard up. If the corruption has set in, as it is starting to a Grove City, a Christian college can do far more damage than a land grant Behemoth U. DJW

So, Pastor Wilson, I noticed this review on your Facebook page: “4/5: Michael Bull is at his best on Twitter, and this collection is fantastic. Even when he is exasperatingly wrong (e.g. on the covenant), he remains edifying.” You can say that even though one part of Michael Bull can be wrong, that the remainder of him, as reflected in a book that I presume you actually read, is still worthwhile. But you can take one college professor, say he’s wrong—on which I agree with you—and then absolutely trash the rest of the college, a college I suspect you have no first-hand knowledge of (please correct me if I’m wrong about that). Yes, “Conservative Colleges That Don’t Conserve” certainly looks a tad bit self-serving.

Tracy

Tracy, the problem is not simply that one professor is off the chain. That could happen anywhere, and probably will. The problem is that the administration of the college hasn’t dealt with it yet. And it is that decision that reflects on the college as a whole. DJW

Pastor Doug, My husband and I were looking for seminaries a few years ago and had a very hard time trying to find out just which ones were “really conserving.” Statements of Faith on websites, and really even anything on websites were mostly unhelpful. We ended up testing each one we were interested in by the topics where the church is under pressure: do they advocate ordaining women? Do they believe in evolution? We ended up at Westminster Theological Seminary (east), which has been very strong in its conservation of the Westminster Confession. We appreciate that but have found that we wanted a teaching style that was less indoctrinational. However, by our selection process we thought schools like Gordon Conwell and Southeastern were “conserving,” when now I find not so much. How can you really find out what the good schools are? Sincerely, Jessica P.S. Thank you for what you do with this blog. You write well and you stand up for the truth in a strong yet winsome way. You have been an encouragement to me. I am currently an east coaster but I have family in Moscow so maybe I’ll have occasion to visit your church someday.

Jessica

Jessica, this is a huge question, but in the current climate I would ask the recruitment office what public statement the institution has made with regard to all the various aspects of the unfolding sexual revolution. That is the current battle. If the college hasn’t been to court yet, a reasonable question is why not? If they do not have faculty or board members with skin in the game, out in the public square, then I would stay away. You don’t learn cultural warfare from functional pacifists. DJW

I know you didn’t make the list exclusive, but it’s my tendency to wonder why some schools didn’t make the cut. I’d be particularly interested in knowing if you think Reformation Bible College is not bending the knee to Baal. It would be the one college not on your list that I’d feel confident is walking the line. And I hope my confidence is not misplaced.

Bill

Bill, my knowledge of other colleges is not exhaustive and so I simply mentioned some of the faithful ones that I do know about. The mere fact that I didn’t mention one should not be taken as anything in itself. DJW.

Conservative Colleges That Don’t Conserve Doug, thanks for calling attention to kinks in the armor of some of these places. What an amazing war we’re in! Please keep up all the thinking out loud you’re doing on the gender issues. Besides being just plain winsome, funny and engaging, it’s helpful and reassuring to us who don’t have loads of time to come up with careful responses to these acts coming on the stage every day.

Yours, Eric

Eric, thanks very much. DJW

More on Roy Moore

New Testament statements about leading children into sin. For the benefit of those who support Roy Moore based upon his “Christian” religiosity. Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me, but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea. Matthew 18:5-6 Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone were hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea. Mark 9:42 It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were cast into the sea than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin. Luke 17:2

Donald

Donald, yes, exactly. But the issue for many of us is actually whether Moore really did those things. If he did, then all the passages you cite are relevant. But if he did not molest that 14-year-old, then all the millstone passages would actually apply to the one who is bearing false witness against him now (Dt. 19:18-19). A charge is made credible by biblical process, and not by random respected people simply saying that they find them “credible.” To give a recent instance of this, Jonah Goldberg—a man I respect—finds the charges against Moore credible. But here’s the thing. I recently wrote something that Goldberg retweeted, and someone else hustled up to let him know that I was not among the Approved. Goldberg said something like “jeepers,” and promptly sidled away. In other words, I happen to know how much work he does on stuff like this. We should hear from more witnesses who know what the world looks like from within the concerted smear vortex. Now it is possible that Moore is guilty. But it is also possible, and I think more than likely, that this is the kind of hit that I have seen multiple times. And we are likely to see more and more of it. DJW

Thank you for your willingness to call out TGC. I really appreciate their work tremendously, in all honesty, but they have swallowed the leftist narrative about race hook, line, and sinker. Highlighting their double standard on this is spot-on. We will see if they really do have convictions or if they are playing PR games to placate secularists.

BJ

BJ, yes. I believe that the Sexual Harassment Apocalypse has ushered in a new set of standards that nobody on the Left or the evangelical soft left will be able to abide. They have pulled down Deep Heaven on their heads. DJW.

Not to mention King’s less than orthodox positions on serious theological issues. They can’t find an orthodox civil rights icon to celebrate or is this MLK50 conference what I suspect it is, simple virtue signal pandering? Given that they are The ***Gospel*** Coalition, one would think that the Gospel would matter to them but based on their recent writings and their tendency to block on social media anyone who engages in wrong-think, I am not sure what their actual focus is these days. Gagnon raised an important question and tipped one of the most untouchable of sacred cows and for that he is to be commended.

Arthur

Yes. I believe that Gagnon has revealed himself to be a man of courage, if nothing else. DJW.

Where are you getting your information that MLK was adulterous? I have heard one unsubstantiated rumor to this effect and I have never heard that he was with three women the night before his death.

Robert

Robert, as I understand it, the basic facts are not disputed at all, and Gagnon summarizes them well. I only have one of these volumes (and haven’t read it yet), but I think this would be a good place to start.  DJW

Mr. Wilson, I understand some of your reluctance to believe the accusers, though I don’t agree with you and tend to believe Moore’s accusers. What I wanted to write about, however, was your comparison between Roy Moore and MLK Jr. While what MLK did was certainly wrong, your post seems to put MLK on the same standing of Moore when there’s a great difference between their two sins. Sexual assault and molesting a child is worse than committing adultery, and putting these sins on the same more level trivializes what Moore has done. The difference of heinousness between these two sins also explains why it may be appropriate to honor MLK where it would not be appropriate to Moore; certain sins disqualify someone more than others. Putting molestation & assault at the same moral level as adultery does not helpfully deal with this issue.

Sincerely, Josiah

Josiah, the actual comparison is between alleged child abuse and confirmed serial adulteries. Read through Gagnon’s summaries again. With King, we are talking about hookers, groupies, orgies, abusive behavior, and blasphemy. DJW

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John
Member

“We should hear from more witnesses who know what the world looks like from within the concerted smear vortex. ” A good reason to leave the “Comments” section on. It is easy to skip over the trolls but the serious commentators often add valuable insight to the topic at hand and that is sorely missed. It will be interesting to see if the number of hits your blog receives changes significantly.

Trey Mays
Member

I think the decision has been made. And we should let go of any disagreement or agreement, or even animosity, towards Doug for this decision. We’ll see if it was a good decision and if his traffic significantly decreases because of it. But it’s his blog and he’s made his decision. We can use the open thread days or his Facebook page to move our discussion.

John
Member

No animosity intended. I just remember when Bayly turned off his comments and I haven’t visited that site for quite a bit. But like you say, it isn’t my blog.

kyriosity
Member

I, too, have been wondering about how Mablog site traffic has been/will be affected by the commentlessness. I confess, I haven’t visited the site all week—just been reading on Feedly.

And thanks for the once-a-week comment thread. I am less forlorn.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Me too, Valerie! It has seemed like a long week!

Chadd
Guest
Chadd

I have very much enjoyed having the comments turned off. The blog is much cleaner now. Thank you.

John
Guest
John

I didn’t pick up a single reference by Doug to “traffic count” for this site — so for those making that point — whatever. But, regarding traffic quality, his concern is clear, reasonable, and inarguably legitimate.

All things considered, Doug, I think you are making the right choice. And, I understand why. And, thank you for Open Thread Tuesday!

kyriosity
Member

“Will, one of the things I will be monitoring is what this will do to my traffic.” Guess you could take that either way, but I don’t know how he’d monitor the quality from the data that an app can collect about site traffic. ????

CHer
Guest
CHer

The fact that so many want the “Top 25 Commenter” list released is a rather pathetic sign of the times IMO. It’s like people waking up and checking Facebook post “likes” first thing in the morning. We’ve all got better things to do than worry about those things.

kyriosity
Member

Shrug. Natural curiosity. I think it was clear from the original mention that Doug didn’t actually have that list written up, but just as some have enjoyed his music playlists and book recommendations, his commenter preferences would also be of interest.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

I think we probably all have our own favorite commenters. For me, it’s not something I want to know. It would be kind of like becoming a Calvinist–I could never imagine myself as one of the Elect but I’d just as soon not have confirmation that I’m not!

kyriosity
Member

Calvinists don’t think that only Calvinists are elect. We have good hopes for you. ????

Katecho
Member

Indeed.

Justin Parris
Member

Did anyone actually say they wanted the list published? I must have missed that. I just saw joking about the list in general. Did some joking myself.

Dan Jones
Member

Bringing the comments back once a week is a brilliant solution which I heartily applaud. Huzzah!
Much to my chagrin, I have nothing worthy of a week’s wait to say.

OKRickety
Member

Dan, But you do again have the photo of you with your cap. For whatever reason, it brings a smile to my face.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Yes, that cap gives me reassurance that there are nice things and friendly people just waiting to be discovered.

adad0
Member

It’s like he is that other kind of “cat in the hat”! ; – )

Dan Jones
Member

See, this is why the comment community on this blog is so wonderful. I feel like we could all get together for a Christmas party, sing ancient carols while Doug carved the roast beast, and some Grinch’s heart would grow three sizes bigger while we sang,
“Mark my footsteps, good my page
Tread thou in them boldly
Thou shall find the winter’s rage
Freeze thy blood less coldly.”
In his master’s step he trod
Where the snow lay dinted
Heat was in the very sod
Which the Saint had printed.”

paulm01
Member

Great visual…pass the beast thisaway.

paulm01
Member

I should add: …those Scandinavians, never know when they will break out in song during a meal!

adad0
Member

Don’t worry cap’n, a once a week “troll Tuesday” will focus more of the good, and perhaps aid in redeeming trolls , instead of enabling them.
Plus, if they are redeemed, they will also know what a redeemed hat looks like!????????????????

paulm01
Member

Missed “the hat”…thx for the smile.

Nathan Smith
Member

I just have to say, that meme describes me perfectly.

bethyada
Member

Sexual assault and molesting a child is worse than committing adultery, and putting these sins on the same more level trivializes what Moore has done.

This suggests that Christians are getting their morality from the world and not from Scripture.

Adultery and sodomy were punishable by death in the law (though not always). Fornication meant the man had to marry (and support) the woman. Touching a post pubescent female over her clothes is less serious than fornication.

Stop letting the screeching of secularists who solemnise sodomy and murder their children define morality.

Malik
Guest
Malik

I think everyone with a decent moral compass disagrees with you. And fornication and rape are very, very different. This suggestion is sick.

lndighost
Member

Hi Malik.

What is a moral compass, in your view? Does it mean having a visceral reaction to certain things and sensing that other things are okay? How do you know that you can trust your reactions? How do you test them for truth?

JP Stewart
Member

And do your visceral reactions mirror the culture’s? For the record, I think I brought up the Moore-MLK inconsistency here before Gagnon’s postings. But mine was a mere comment, while he’s gone into more detail. I’m glad there are still a few brave souls like him.

OKRickety
Member

Malik,

A little “rushed” here, too? Are you disagreeing with bethyada  or what he quoted from Josiah? What suggestion is sick? If you’re going to comment, please word it better than this.

More importantly, I think bethyada‘s point is that a Christian’s morality should be determined by God. I question whether the “decent moral compass” you describe meets that standard.

Justin Parris
Member

” I question whether the “decent moral compass” you describe meets that standard.”

Whether or not it meets the standard, it’s clear the standard isn’t much of a concern which is just as significant of an issue.

Malik
Guest
Malik

I’ll respond to all of these points at once, as they more or less are similar. First, rape and fornication are very different. Fornication means sexual intercourse between two people that are not married. So yes, the Bible’s point makes sence, adultery is worse. It’s worse to cheat than to have premarital sex. Furthermore, I believe, I’m not sure, but I believe that more was married by the time he abused these girls, but again I’m not sure. So the connection here is clear, Moore also cheated rather than fornicating. Now to the moral compass subject. First from just a… Read more »

nathantuggy
Member

Moore was certainly not married at the time of any of the accusations (1977 being the latest AFAIK, and 1985 being when he married his first and present wife), and no accusation has been made that he committed fornication properly speaking.

It should also be noted that saying “X isn’t as bad as Y” does not mean “X is totally OK or defensible”. Having a moderated and tempered understanding of the relative import of various sins or crimes is part of wisdom.

Malik
Guest
Malik

Ah, that’s interesting, so he was really old when he got married ig, that’s odd, especially for a conservative, but clearly he wasn’t as conservative in his younger days lol.
And I understand that, it just seemed like everyone was like jumping to a rape isn’t that bad stance, which is disgusting

Justin Parris
Member

” it just seemed like everyone was like jumping to a rape isn’t that bad stance, which is disgusting”

You should read their words more carefully.

Malik
Guest
Malik

I said more than once that it was a feeling I got reading not something they said, and that I was probably wrong. No one said what he did was awful everyone was saying well MLK was worse and stuff, that’s why I got that feeling.

adad0
Member

M’, one of many things you might not understand, is that a service academy like West Point, does not allow marriage.

A military career, which includes overseas deployment and combat, does tend to put a “hold” on common civilian activities, like marriage.

Katecho
Member

adad0 wrote:

M’, one of many things you might not understand, is that a service academy like West Point, does not allow marriage.

I was recently reminded that if the military wanted servicemen to have a wife and family, they would be issued one.

Malik
Guest
Malik

I understand that. I wasn’t attacking him for it just thought it was interesting. I’ve known many married people in the military.

paulm01
Member

The election result indicates those not wanting a “good R” in that seat got their desired outcome. (Moore was not a good R, plus the way he sits a horse shows a lot…painful to watch.) The real test will be how many of Moore’s accusers will follow through, I suspect they will fade from the limelight as quickly as they appeared [after 40 years of silence.]

CHer
Guest
CHer

There was an awful and extremely well-funded smear campaign in Alabama, too. Nightly robo-calls for the last few weeks, the playing of a non-existent race card (billboards about people killed in bombings 50 years ago, radio ads saying KKK types approved of some of Moore’s positions). It was guilt-by-association at its worse. They even had Charles Barkley run radio ads constantly. Whoever funded it (DNC, Soros, “Deep State,” take your pick) spent a fortune.

paulm01
Member

CHer: If this is the current opposition game plan for an interim election to refill a seat (effectively buying an election), imagine what the next full election will look like. I suspect total mayhem. Eventually no decent person will want to run for office, leaving the swamp to those who don’t mind wallowing in the pigsty. I was seriously made ill watching Jones’ victory speech, these guys act as if they won the Olympics. It politics, which is gross enough. And it’s only public office, not really high on my list for something to be proud after watching the current… Read more »

CHer
Guest
CHer

“leaving the swamp to those who don’t mind wallowing in the pigsty.:”

And for those candidates who will get a free pass instead of an FBI-level background check from the MSM.

paulm01
Member

I suspect people without a social agenda will eventually tune politics out (which appears to be the goal).

God says “keep your focus on me”. Still the best approach, otherwise we get dragged into the mire.

Malik
Guest
Malik

Everyone even your precious Republicans run negative ad campaigns. Not saying it’s right but it isn’t a “left” problem it’s a political problem.

Malik
Guest
Malik

The real problem here is the media. No matter what the women do you will no longer hear about them because it doesn’t matter so the media won’t report it regardless. They have vary little say. Furthermore there isn’t much they can do without the media due to the statute of limitations so their hands are pretty tied to be honest

Justin Parris
Member

“God created all of our consciences, and they function according to the Bible and his will.” Did. Past tense. We’re a fallen race. If people’s internal moral compass was by nature without error, you wouldn’t have any basis to call yours “decent” in comparison to bethyada. “anyone with a shred of decency and intelect would agree.” First, this isn’t a valid point, but I can’t resist. Of all the words to misspell, why did it have to be “intellect?” People make this same statement to back virtually every position imaginable. I’ve heard this to defend the dismemberment of children without… Read more »

Malik
Guest
Malik

Of course we are fallen, but we have the holy spirit to guide us and we still have an (imperfect but sometimes accurate) moral compass. And your other point is what I’m saying, right and wrong have been twisted but the underlying moral sence works, we just choose to break it or ignore it. And you have to have a larger ethics discussion as well. I see what you are saying, and I don’t think we disagree much, and if we do it over trivial technicalities. Regardless, I stand by what I said about rape being much worse. And maybe… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member

I never objected to your point of comparison between the two sins. I don’t find it dire enough of an issue to generate much interest. No, what I found concerning was your basis of objection. Bethyada was saying “the Bible says this” and your response was not “no it doesn’t” or “you’re misapplying that principle” but was “I feel differently”. It suggests you concede the point that Bethyada is correct about the Bible and just don’t feel the need to take God’s word all that seriously if you feel strongly about something. I may be being a bit harsh, if… Read more »

Malik
Guest
Malik

On the subjects of Trump’s tweets, as some countries do I feel that these are the most official statements we get from him, so as awful reading as they make I still try to keep up lol.
And yes, it was quite funny????
On the actual material I believe I started with some superficial exigesis. I corrected a definition she was misinterpreting originally. Then I was responding to others who were attacking both my moral compass and the idea of one having any authority. Of course I believe the Bible is the ultimate authority.

OKRickety
Member

Malik: “… attacking both my moral compass ….”

Both Malik and Jonathan have expressed this concept of being attacked  for their personal beliefs. It is rather a double standard. It is acceptable to say someone is a bigot for conservative beliefs, but umbrage is expressed when non-conservative ideas are questioned. It seems the victim  mentality is extended to almost everything except Christian or conservative thought.

CHer
Guest
CHer

Spot-on. It’s perfectly fine to start out with gun blazing, blasting Southern white Christians as some backward, monolithic group who belong in another century. But question the deceptions, lies and double-standards of SJWs? Blasphemy! And the hyper-sensitivity to any criticism is alarming…a sure sign of our emasculated culture. I’m speaking more of the latter person you mentioned, BTW.

Malik
Guest
Malik

I’m fine with decent southern white Christians. The ones yelling at immigrants to go back where they come from, that’s what I hate. And I don’t believe I have attacked an entire group except racists, while you attack the entire left as a matter of course. And I’m not hyper sensitive, you actually don’t know me.

CHer
Guest
CHer

You clearly didn’t read or understand my last sentence. Looks like another reactionary “rushed” response.

Malik
Guest
Malik

You said more about Jonathan, I believe this response would for the most part speak for him as well, and more doesn’t mean completely so I was responding to any part about me as well as well as the blanket idea that there is a double standard.

Malik
Guest
Malik

This is clearly rediculous. Attacking racism and attacking someone’s moral compass who you don’t even know are a world apart. If conservative values are racism and anti Islamic, then conservatives are worse than I ever could have imagined. But I actually know conservative people who don’t believe that, most of them don’t. This I don’t attack for being bigoted,racism I do.

CHer
Guest
CHer

“so the right man one and Moore’s moral bankruptcy is irrelevant moore or less”

So your moral compass shows that the pro-choice, pro-sodomy candidate is the “right” one? Sounds like it’s based more on Hollywood and the MSM than the Bible. I won’t comment on the irony of your spelling…

paulm01
Member

“So your moral compass shows that the pro-choice, pro-sodomy candidate is the “right” one?”

Maybe new phrasing for the current era: “…im-Moore-al” compass?

Malik
Guest
Malik

Pro sodomy, give me a break. That’s a terrible thing to say. And while I don’t support abortion, it isn’t an issue in the forefront that is going to be moving much in the near future, so it’s kind of irrelevant. I prefer him to a child molester.

CHer
Guest
CHer

“Pro sodomy, give me a break. That’s a terrible thing to say”

No, it’s just the truth. No one called you pro sodomy, just the candidate you supported. And it’s undeniably true:
http://whnt.com/2017/11/19/lgbtq-supporters-rally-for-doug-jones-across-alabama/

Malik
Guest
Malik

I know no one called me that, but pro gay marriage is a much better way to put this. Sodomy for one thing is just attacking but also makes you sound like you’ve been around since King James and haven’t changed your vocabulary.

Malik
Guest
Malik

Also, I’m more than happy to support a pro LGBT candidate

Katecho
Member

Malik wrote:

Also, I’m more than happy to support a pro LGBT candidate

Malik seems to be tipping his hand all of a sudden. Remember he was the one who wanted to lecture us about moral compasses.

Malik
Guest
Malik

Yes, I was not going to talk about it because I want to save it for later. But I have some reasonable Christian fact based reasons for this stance.

Katecho
Member

Malik wrote:

Yes, I was not going to talk about it because I want to save it for later. But I have some reasonable Christian fact based reasons for this stance.

I can certainly understand Malik not wanting to reveal his true agenda here, but before telling us how reasonable his stance is, why not spare us the intrigue and just lay it out for us to examine? If it’s “fact based” then stick to the facts.

CHer
Guest
CHer

So you don’t accept the Bible’s clear teaching about homosexuality? Obviously we’re going to have different moral compasses, then.

lndighost
Member

pro gay marriage is a much better way to put this. How is it better? Surely you don’t mean to argue that it’s a more biblical way to put it? Sodomy for one thing is just attacking Is it? It’s just a centuries-old term for an activity God does not permit. but also makes you sound like you’ve been around since King James and haven’t changed your vocabulary. The nature of the activity hasn’t changed. There is no biblical reason a Christian’s view of its morality should change. So why should the vocabulary change? Please read me carefully here. It… Read more »

CHer
Guest
CHer

“I prefer him to a child molester.”

So we can play judge, jury and executioner based on how we take sides on “he said/she said” from 40 years ago? Your compass is really off now.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

I find the vagaries of the human conscience very tricky because when principle comes up against human sentiment, principle usually loses. Not only does the principle get abandoned but we are warmed by a nice glow that we chose whatever makes people happy in the moment. My conscience, unmoored from religious teaching, would urge people to do what makes them happy as long as they don’t hurt anybody. Which means that it would be useless as a moral guide to leading a specifically Christian life.

Malik
Guest
Malik

That is a very interesting/provocative idea. I definitely agree mostly, although people who aren’t Christians often do things out of principal, not out of sentiment, so yeah, interesting idea

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

I think the problem with our moral compasses is that, unless we are very careful, they tend to be set by the culture without our even noticing. And, speaking for myself, exposure to certain kinds of sinners who are otherwise kindly, decent people tends to reduce my awareness that what they are doing is something the Bible says is sinful. I think it is good that we almost universally regard people who sexually prey on children as being wicked. There have been times in history when this horror was less keenly felt. But I know for myself that my revulsion… Read more »

OKRickety
Member

Malik, “… I believe that more was married by the time he abused these girls, but again I’m not sure.” Seeing that you are ignorant of the fact that Moore did not marry until well after most, if not all, of the allegations, I suggest that the rest of your suppositions about the allegations are thus also prone to the possibility of being wrong. In other words, gather all available information before making judgment. Obviously you have not done that in this case. “With the visceral reaction, look if something is so evil it makes me want to puke, I’m… Read more »

CHer
Guest
CHer

It’s really sounding like his positions and moral compass are guided by newsfeeds from social media and similar sources…which is really scary if you know how engineered and biased they are.

Malik
Guest
Malik

You DONT know me, I don’t read any news on social media, I may click through a Snapchat news feed once in a while to get the “sensational” news but I don’t take anything I hear seriously and then I move on to serious news sources. Each day I look through 22 news sources to get multiple perspectives. Again, you don’t know me.

Malik
Guest
Malik

His marital status seems irrelevant to wether or not the allegations are true.
And this is ridiculous, ofc there are worse criminals, I still don’t want this criminal in office. Thank goodness he won’t be.

Katecho
Member

Malik wrote:

And this is ridiculous, ofc there are worse criminals, I still don’t want this criminal in office. Thank goodness he won’t be.

Apparently Malik has already tried and sentenced Moore as a criminal. Ironically, Malik wanted to lecture us about moral compasses?

OKRickety
Member

Malik,

“Fornication means sexual intercourse between two people that are not married.”

That is the currently accepted definition. However, your biblical “exigesis” exegesis will be improved if you learn its biblical meaning.

Justin Parris
Member

How do you determine a decent moral compass? What if your moral feelings disagree with the Bible, do you drop your moral feelings or drop the Bible? If the answer is drop the Bible for your feelings, how do you account for being a fallible person?

OKRickety
Member

bethyada,

“Stop letting the screeching of secularists who solemnise sodomy and murder their children define morality.”

Excellent idea!

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Bethyada, I think that the sexual touching of a young woman against her will is still very seriously sinful on a different level from fornication. I am not referring to Moore here. A virginal sixteen year old can be frightened and distressed by unwanted sexual touching even over clothing. It leaves her feeling violated and defenseless, which is why I think it is appropriate to make it illegal.

Malik
Guest
Malik

????????????????

bethyada
Member

Jill, I agree with Malik that consent vs non consent makes comparisons more difficult. I also oppose rape and child molestation.

I don’t want a man touching my daughter. Nor would I want her touching a man against his will. But if she behaved sexually like MLK is alleged to have I would be distressed far, far more so.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Yes indeed!

paulm01
Member

Jill, while I see your point here (and am certainly not condoning bad or criminal behavior) this sounds like pop-psyche run amok if everything unwanted becomes “offensive or devastating’. If we make every “at the margin” behavior illegal pretty soon you create a weak-minded citizenry that can’t stand up for themselves. BOTH men and woman need to get back to basics…men need to behave (not all will), and woman need to grow up and not be so offended by those things male they don’t like (not all can). The boorish behavior we see now is the direct result of not… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Well, I do agree with you that people need to toughen up. I think I was thinking primarily of the kind of young girl I used to be in my early teens when I did find a creepy man in a movie theatre really distressing and was too sexually modest to tell anyone. I didn’t even know the words to describe what he was doing.

You can be sure my own daughter was brought up not only to expect this kind of creepiness but to scream bloody murder if it happened!

paulm01
Member

Jill: Agreed, your comment sparked the thought that society is getting soft in far too many areas, the latest at the top of the list is anything relational someone doesn’t like is now harassment, which most are not.

Malik
Guest
Malik

This is a ridiculous response to sexual molestation. Think about what you are saying

Malik
Guest
Malik

This is a great compromise. My letter didn’t make it???????????????????? jk.

Ian Miller
Member

Yay! We have comments! :)

lndighost
Member

‘Pumpkin rugby’ looks like fun. A New Zealand pumpkin that size is maybe 10 kilos and as solid as a rock though, so unfortunately I don’t think it will catch on here. There would be fatalities.

paulm01
Member

I was hoping for a Haka at the beginning.

melody
Member
melody

I am just so honored that you posted my super short letter and mentioned my name. I have enjoyed my 15 seconds of fame.

Andrew
Guest
Andrew

Thank you for turning off the comments. John Piper, Tim Challies, and other very helpful teachers have managed to convey massive quantities of biblical truth without tacking on a fifth grade food fight at the end of every post. Good call on your part!

adad0
Member

Proverbs 26 18 Like a maniac shooting flaming arrows of death 19 is one who deceives their neighbor and says, “I was only joking!” 20 Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down. 21 As charcoal to embers and as wood to fire, so is a quarrelsome person for kindling strife. 22 The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to the inmost parts. Well Wilson, per v. 20, by your format adjustment here, a more controlled burn has already been achieved! “flaming arrows of death, (v. 18-19) alleged by some… Read more »

Katecho
Member

There was a lot of good feedback under the original “Farewell, Comments, Hello Letters” post that disappeared rather quickly once comments were turned off. Glad to see that those comments are now rendering again. Thanks.

kyriosity
Member

Ah…I never saw your comments there before they disappeared…and now it’s gonna kill me even more that I don’t know who you are! (Gimme another hint: IRL or just online?)

Katecho
Member

In this age of untrasound, Google, and Facebook, maybe there is some value in clinging to a few mysteries. :-)

We now live in a time when people’s online views (easily obtained) can, and are, being held against them for promotion and employment. I’m glad Wilson isn’t in a position to give much thought to that. Maybe I give more thought to it than I should, but I’m erring on the side of caution for now.

So, my sincerest apologies for any distress to kyriosity. It’s a completely unintended side effect.

kyriosity
Member

I understand. But even that is useful data. Rules out lots of folks I know who ARE nonanonymously mouthy. ;^)

Katecho
Member

A delay imposed by once-a-week commenting would seem to encourage people to reflect more, and slow down a bit. Or it could just regularly throw open the gates to a landslide of rapid-fire, pent-up, back and forth. We’ll see how it works out in practice. I kind of like the notion of limiting comments to one per blog post, for each registered member. Not sure how easy it would be to modify existing comment code to enforce that, but I think it would vastly improve the signal to noise, and require arguments to be well organized. In any case, I’m… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member

Wouldn’t a 1 post limit punish those who post earlier, allowing later posters a full rebuttal without a chance for a response?

Katecho
Member

Parris wrote: Wouldn’t a 1 post limit punish those who post earlier, allowing later posters a full rebuttal without a chance for a response? Not sure that it would be that much of a “punishment”. I’d consider it a feature if it removed the advantage of a hasty first post. And patience is a virtue. If people really have a significant supplement or counter-argument to something Wilson is saying, then it shouldn’t matter whether they respond first or last. Their comment should stand on its own merits, and Wilson can respond as he sees fit. No need for the tonnage… Read more »

Mike
Guest
Mike

Hey all, I know this is random and maybe off topic, but I am looking for some thoughts on this little book on Amazon I just read called The Apocalypse of Jesus: The True Story of a Secret Manuscript. The author, Kevin Anderson (not his real name), says he is leaking some info about a very recently discovered new biblical manuscript which has a couple of interesting variations on Mark 13: Jesus says the sun will be darkened two times in seven years. Anyone heard or know of this supposed manuscript, which Anderson says will not be published for years… Read more »

Katecho
Member

Based on the timing of the claims about this “secret manuscript”, it’s likely referring to the recent identification of a Greek language manuscript of the alleged “First Apocalypse of James” that had been previously uncatalogued in the Oxford University archives (I assume this is the university’s archive of the Oxyrhynchus Papyri). The content of the “First Apocalypse of James” was already known from a set of gnostic manuscripts previously found at Nag Hammadi in Egypt. So the content was known, in the coptic language, since the mid 1940’s. All that seems to have happened recently is that a Greek version… Read more »