The Church and Race: Thinking Theologically

Raceandchurch

Background

Two open letters addressing racial injustice were recently published in the Christian Chronicle:

These were accompanied by an article including interviews with some of the authors.

The letters were, of course, inspired by the current controversy regarding the Black Lives Matter movement.

A little theology

As stated by James Davison Hunter,

The proclivity toward domination and toward the politicization of everything leads Christianity today to bizarre turns; turns that, in my view, transform much of the Christian public witness into the very opposite of the witness Christianity is supposed to offer. A vision of the new city commons [in which the church participates] … leads to a postpolitical view of power. It is not likely to happen, but it may be that the healthiest course of action for Christians, on this count, is to be silent for a season and learn how to enact their faith in public through acts of shalom rather than to try again to represent it publicly through law, policy, and political mobilization. This would not mean civic privatism [permanent withdrawal from the public square] but rather a season to learn how to engage the world in public differently and better.

To Change the World: The Irony, Tragedy, and Possibility of Christianity in the Late Modern World (Kindle Locations 3876-3882). Kindle Edition. (Emphasis in original.)

Interesting, isn’t it, that one of our deepest and most influential thought leaders regarding the church and culture thinks the American church is not ready to enter the public square and present our case. Why not?

Well, in part because when we do this, we often do a truly dreadful job of it. Too many of our leaders say things that don’t help at all — that even hurt the cause of Christ. And we’re so eaten up with the American culture that we think we have nothing to offer but the same, failed solutions offered by secular powers: better laws, better policies, and political activism (get the vote out).

We seem unaware of what make the Kingdom different. We have some regrouping and rethinking to do.

Stanley Hauerwas advises,

[W]e content ourselves with ersatz Christian ethical activity—lobbying Congress to support progressive strategies, asking the culture at large to be a little less racist, a little less promiscuous, a little less violent. Falwell’s Moral Majority is little different from any mainline Protestant church that opposes him. Both groups [the left and the right] imply that one can practice Christian ethics without being in the Christian community. Both begin with the Constantinian assumption that there is no way for the gospel to be present in our world without asking the world to support our convictions through its own social and political institutionalization. The result is the gospel transformed into civil religion.

All our ethical responses begin [in the church]. Through the teaching, support, sacrifice, worship, and commitment of the church, utterly ordinary people are enabled to do some rather extraordinary, even heroic acts, not on the basis of their own gifts or abilities, but rather by having a community capable of sustaining Christian virtue. The church enables us to be better people than we could have been if left to our own devices. …

As Barth says, “[The Church] exists … to set up in the world a new sign which is radically dissimilar to [the world’s] own manner and which contradicts it in a way which is full of promise” (Church Dogmatics, 4.3.2).

Hauerwas, Stanley. Resident Aliens: Life in the Christian Colony (pp. 81-83). Abingdon Press – A. Kindle Edition. (Emphasis mine.)

In short, yes, we should certainly support racial reconciliation in society. But the reason the church supports racial reconciliation is that the joining of the nations into a single community is a part of God’s mission, going all the way back to Abraham. But God’s solution is not community forums, retraining of police, DOJ oversight of local police departments, and new laws. God’s solution is Jesus – and thanks to the work of Jesus, the indwelling Holy Spirit.

Therefore, once the church takes the log out of its own eye and finally has the credibility to suggest a solution, that solution is going to be Jesus.  (If it’s anything else, why is the church giving such advice? I mean, the church as the church is not a consultant to the principalities and powers on secular, Jesus-less conflict resolution. We are called to preach Jesus.)

And so, as Hauerwas says, we’re going to find it very difficult to talk to the powers and principalities. We will be speaking from the only worldview that the church has, the worldview of Jesus, a worldview in which racism is being defeated by the transforming work of the Spirit. And if we seek, as the church, to change the world for the better without Jesus, we’re effectively declaring that Jesus is not needed. And this we cannot do and still be the church. And we’d be very wrong. There is no other solution.

Richard Beck says it well in his blog, Experimental Theology (emphasis in original):

In the bible justice flows out of the worship of God. Spiritual revival is the prerequisite of political change.

Political and economic systems orbit spiritual values and priorities. And until those spiritual values and priorities are brought into alignment with the kingdom of God political and economic systems will be stubbornly resistant to change. People with good intentions might agree that our political and economic systems are unfair and unjust, but until we begin to live with new values nothing much will change, politically and economically speaking. As the gospels tell us, the kingdom of God begins with repentance, a spiritual change that results in a new pattern of life. And change is what no one wants to do. It’s too costly and inconvenient. And so the political and economic systems of the nations roll on unchanged. Even as we name them as unjust and oppressive.

This is why calls for social justice are often so impotent. These calls frequently ignore the deep spiritual rot that is at the root of oppression. As the bible teaches us, the root cause of oppression is idolatry, worshiping the “god of the nation,” the animating spirituality guiding our political and economic arrangements. The bible discerns the diabolical aspect of these reigning spiritualities, a religious perspective many social justice warriors lack.

Amen! Amen! Amen!

And not only are we limited to the Truth — the Truth who is Jesus — but this is a truth that the world does not want to hear.

God, Jesus, and the Spirit are not welcome in the public square. Because of the First Amendment, the government will not be able even have such a conversation – and so it will continue its humanist program of making better people with better laws – a “solution” that cannot succeed. (Obviously enough, the civil rights laws have helped in very real ways, but they’ve not solved the problem — because they can’t. Only the Spirit can change us to be like Jesus.)

If my imaginings were to come true, the church would at least have the credibility to offer Jesus as a solution. If the log were out of our eye, the suggestion that Jesus is the answer may be unacceptable to the powers and principalities, but it wouldn’t be unbelievable.

But the principalities and powers can be very jealous. They want to be the solution so they can have the loyalty of and thus power over those they’ve delivered from oppression. They will not easily let Jesus take credit.

Boil it down to the individual level. Without Jesus, how do you persuade a secular police officer to arrest, rather than shoot, a man he considers a danger to society? Fear of the law? The law already makes this illegal. Fear of being fired? Police departments and unions already consider vigilante justice wrong. The problem is not a problem of law and policy and training but a problem of the heart. You can’t have enough cameras and laws and workshops to change the heart.

But if the individual policeman sees a community made of people transformed to love and live together as one across racial and ethnic lines, maybe he’ll see the wisdom of giving up racial bigotry. But how will a heart be changed without the Spirit?

(Rom. 7:18-19 ESV)  18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out.  19 For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.

The solution?

(Rom. 8:13 ESV) 13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

There is a rebuttal argument, of course. Let’s consider it briefly: Because the church loves its neighbors, and because the victims of illegal police shootings are our neighbors, shouldn’t we do something to help protect them from illegal police violence? That’s for the next post.

PS — One of the difficulties of having this conversation in the Churches of Christ is the denial of so many of the work of the Spirit to transform the individual Christian into the image of Christ. Without that doctrine, we really have nothing to say about racial hatred other than it’s wrong. We have no solution for it. Anyone can preach the superiority of a life built on love; only Jesus offers the Spirit as a Helper to actually do it.

Profile photo of Jay Guin

About Jay F Guin

My name is Jay Guin, and I’m a retired elder. I wrote The Holy Spirit and Revolutionary Grace about 18 years ago. I’ve spoken at the Pepperdine, Lipscomb, ACU, Harding, and Tulsa lectureships and at ElderLink. My wife’s name is Denise, and I have four sons, Chris, Jonathan, Tyler, and Philip. I have two grandchildren. And I practice law.
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175 Responses to The Church and Race: Thinking Theologically

  1. Mark says:

    “Too many of our leaders say things that don’t help at all — that even hurt the cause of Christ.”

    This is too true. My suggestion is to begin by cleaning up Youtube. I realize that this is like trying to clean up the ocean, but you have to start somewhere. If you search for “church of Christ sermon,” you will get some awful ones. People who know little about or are curious of what Christianity thinks, even if they are agnostic, may search for a sermon or some type of talk and might listen to 5 minutes of it, much like a podcast. Yet, quite a few of the sermons I find on there are not Gospel-focused but majorly anti-woman to say the least. I put sexism in with racism. Now, if you have to wonder if you have credibility after this type of sermon is watched, the answer is no. I realize this is not an easy thing to fix as it would require a discussion between autonomous churches about what one calls “sound doctrine” and the other calls damaging to Christianity. I also know Youtube is not on too many people’s radar as there is a lot of smut on it, but there is a lot of good on it too. I’m not saying all sermons must be as good as Ted talks but please don’t write one that harms the faith.

  2. Robert Solomon says:

    Jay, I am enjoying and being challenged positively by your thoughts and insights. Please keep them coming. It is truly a blessing. I believe we have begun to engage in this important discourse more critically than ever before.

  3. Gary says:

    I’m afraid conservative American Christianity has irreparably damaged its ability to be seen as having any credibility on accomplishing social justice through the Jesus it portrays. The elephant in the room of this subject at this time is that two thirds of American Evangelicals are telling pollsters that they support a man for President who has blatantly disparaged one minority group after another and hints at the use of violence against those who would oppose his new regime. This is not a matter of trying to use government to bring the Kingdom of God on earth. This is a question of whether those who claim to be Christ’s disciples will usher into power a man who threatens to use the power of the state against one vulnerable group after another. Without Evangelical support this man’s candidacy would have been stopped dead in its tracks long before now. Hopefully his quest for political power will fail. But how can the majority in this country ever possibly care again about what conservative Christians have to say?

  4. John says:

    Gary, good insight and well put.

  5. John says:

    Now that I think about it Gary, maybe we shouldn’t be all that surprised at the political choice of conservative evangelicals today. Many, Many conservatives supported George Wallace; and many of these actually liked David Duke in the seventies. I remember sitting at lunch with two other preachers when the subject of David Duke appearing on the Phil Donahue show with a Neo-Nazi came up. One preacher said he was disappointed that Duke had to be on at the same time with the Neo-Nazi because that kept him from getting a fair hearing and a better understanding. The other preacher did not disagree. What I also find disappointing is the thinking that as long as they accept Christians of color as “one with them in Christ”, then their belief that whites are superior in leadership, whether it be business or political, cannot be labeled racist.

    The Church of Christ, as well as a few other denominations, were again given a fork in the road…and once again they took the shorter one that came to a dead end, then circled the wagons.

  6. Profile photo of Jay Guin Jay Guin says:

    Gary,

    Your post is not remotely fair to your many brothers in Christ who support Trump.

    Is it true — honest to God true — that they are “telling pollsters that they support a man for President who has blatantly disparaged one minority group after another and hints at the use of violence against those who would oppose his new regime” or is the truth that they support Trump and YOU believe him to be guilty of these things? You make it sound as though evangelicals have reached these very conclusions — and I don’t believe that to be a fair characterization of your brothers in Christ.

    Second, you completely ignore the fact that many who poll in favor of Trump do so because they find Hillary even worse. You have nothing negative to say about her, which makes your objectivity somewhat suspect, don’t you think?

    Third, you further ignore the fact that many conservative Christians – black Christians — support Hillary as do many mainline white Christians. So you equate “Christ’s disciples” with “white conservative evangelicals” (Hardly true) And you equate “white evangelical” with “conservative Christians” which ignores conservative black Christians.

    In fact, the Christian vote is divided between the candidates along the usual lines. What has changed is not the split but the moral character of the candidates — and both leave much to be desired.

  7. Christopher says:

    Jay wrote:

    “But if the individual policeman sees a community made of people transformed to love and live together as one across racial and ethnic lines, maybe he’ll see the wisdom of giving up racial bigotry.”

    I think we need to be wise and smart enough to not accept the liberal leaning – even propagandistic – MSM’s presentation of reality. There are far more whites and Hispanics shot by police than blacks. But this is seldom reported in the national news. Just as you never hear about black children being murdered, but only cute white ones like Jon Benet Ramsey. Yes, blacks are killed at a higher rate per capita than whites or Hispanics, but they also (I believe) commit over half of the homicides. There is doubtless some racism in police departments, but the main problem being wrongly protested by BLM is not racism but police brutality. So the movement itself is racist in tenor, which in turn engenders a racist backlash.

    But I agree the answer lies in making followers of Jesus. Our culture, our nation, is headed off a cliff.

  8. Christopher says:

    Gary wrote:

    “Without Evangelical support this man’s candidacy would have been stopped dead in its tracks long before now.”

    That seems to be true. We don’t know how much Trump was helped by Democrats voting for him in the primary, on the theory he’d be the weakest candidate against Clinton. But there are a LOT of religious people out there who are not very righteous. The latter, indeed, might be small in comparison. So long as people embrace “easy believism” they will feel they have a license to sin.

  9. Gary says:

    Jay, I did mean that two thirds of white Evangelicals are telling pollsters that they support Trump. By the way I did not mean that all Christians should vote for Clinton. There are other candidates. There is also the option of not voting for any candidate for President. In 2000, 2004 and 2008 I did not cast a vote for any presidential candidate because there was no one I could vote for in good conscience. I did go to the polls to vote in down ballot races. I’ve been voting religiously since 1974 and I’ve only voted for a Democrat for President once in my life. So I did not make my comments based on partisanship. You may disagree but I stand by my main point. American white conservative Christianity will not likely recover in our lifetimes having credibility in our society after backing Donald Trump for President. Without Evangelical support he would never have gotten this far. I believe that in years to come it will be a badge of shame for those who are trying to elect him and especially so for Christians. This is not a liberal position. Many conservatives are saying much the same thing. Ordinarily I would not mix politics with religious discussions but sometimes our faith should compel us to take a stand against those who engender hate and intolerance. This is one of those times.

  10. John says:

    Again, Gary…AMEN! It does not matter who and how many claim they support a particular candidate; if that candidate is a disgrace and brings shame upon the nation, there is not enough Christian votes to dignify and make that person worthy of the office.

  11. John says:

    It has been on my mind much the last year or so, how we Americans can look back in history on other nations and ask, “How could good people support such bad leaders?” Yet, we never see ourselves doing that. Do we think we are above that? Evil leaders are not brought to power by evil people; they come to power by the support of ordinary human beings who surrender their thinking.

  12. Alabama John says:

    WE don’t know how involved God is in this election.

    He might have in mind something to happen that will help all Christians that would involve us having a certain mind set in our president.

    Things have got to change and fast or Christianity as we know it will disappear from the USA, especially if we are taken over by those of another god worshiping bunch. We can read of that being allowed to happen in the past and the consequences following

    Lets give God more credit than we are giving.

  13. John says:

    AJ, I find the mind of Christ is so many people. Yet, those on the right keep screaming that Christianity is disappearing. It just may be that many who have the mind of Christ, people with whom you have had no contact, could be looking at a segment of “Christianity” and saying to themselves, “Yep, that kind of “Christianity” needs to disappear”.

  14. John says:

    AJ, a number of months ago, I made the conscience effort to pray for this election twice a day, morning and evening, by praying The Beatitudes…period. They are the only words I use. And as I do I cannot help but recognize the shame that certain words bring upon this nation and its people.

  15. Christopher says:

    Though I do not “support” Trump, I plan to vote for him. The reasons are simple: 1) history shows is that there have been very few good leaders of ANY country. Just look at ancient Israel, Rome and England. LBJ, to me, makes Trump look like a Boy Scout. 2) the SCOTUS is usually far more consequential than the POTUS, and while there is no guarantee Trump will nominate conservative justices, there is a clear chance he will. There is no such chance with Clinton. 3) Trump is a “rude and crude” New Yorker. If you’ve ever been around one, you would not be so surprised at the way he talks.

    As for Evangelicals supporting Trump, the fact is America is NOT a theocracy. Trump is preferable to a Pat Robinson any day of the week. The best POTUS we have had in the last century was probably Reagan. That’s just reality. Maybe if, as Jay says, we bring hordes of people to Jesus we will nominate truly righteous leaders.

  16. John says:

    Christopher, I live very close to New York; made a number of trips into the city. Trump is still a disgrace and a shame. Besides, if Trump becomes president, his choices for SCOTUS will be in his interest only. Neither your interest, mine, nor anyone else’s will be any part of his mental process.

  17. Dwight says:

    I cannot defend many of the things that comes out of Trump’s mouth, as they are crude, but they may be more right, even though they are crude in ways that many hate to admit. And the level of contempt Obama has shown for his country while abroad is worse than many of the things that Trump has said.
    I would not be voting for Trump if there was a better candidate, but I don’t see Hillary as being better. Some of the recorded language she has used behind the scenes towards those she dislikes have barely made it to press, because the press would rather air Trump’s bad language. Many Christians are not so much pro-Trump as they are anti-Hillary, but this is the way most voting goes. Many voted for Obama because they hated Bush and thus the Republican party.

  18. Alabama John says:

    John,
    Prayer as you are doing will sure help but how God will answer may not be as we would have it ourselves.

    Most countries superiority only last for 200 or so years and then start a decline as greed starts taking over. Their people want, no, demand more and work less.

    The USA is in a mess and I fear another country taking over as history has shown us happens when countries have gotten as we have. This is an old story repeated many times, not something new.

    With the new leadership or financial dominance, along comes their religion. Folks will be drawn to it because it seems to be right as it has dominance so it must be right with their god and those gods that became popular in these same circumstances have recognizable followers and names today.

    This is nothing new, same in the Bible with Israel put in captivity. Our God rewards and also punishes His people.

    To stop this it always takes a bad a– leader that will do real bad things to get us out of this mess. Lots of people will die and suffer terrible disasters, disease, or worse.

  19. Christopher says:

    Well said, Dwight. We have had plenty of evil presidents. Just look at JFK, who is lionized by “progressives”. He was committing adultery every three days or so. Look at LBJ, Nixon and Clinton. People act like Trump is the most vile man to run for president and it simply isn’t so. History is our friend.

  20. Christopher says:

    John, you simply have no way of knowing the validity of what you claim regarding Trump’s SCOTUS picks – none. He has pledged to nominate conservative justices. He may not, but I’m betting he will. No one else will, that’s for certain. That’s the only play at preserving this nation I have this term.

  21. Larry Cheek says:

    One thing that we can be for certain about is there will never be a Christian candidate placed into office. Several have tried, notice how far they got. There is not enough Christians who can agree to vote for one Christian to place him in office. What I am interested in seeing is such a great landslide that it places a great test upon the Electoral College to allow the popular vote to place a candidate into office. Until then, why do we need to spend all this money to secure a popular vote?

  22. John says:

    Christopher, Trump has been all over the political map, stopping for a while where it helped HIM. There is absolutely no reason to believe he’s settled in to stay.

  23. John says:

    As matter of fact, Trump is all over the issue map now…one position today, another tomorrow. His surrogates spend their all their time explaining how he “really didn’t mean what he said”.

  24. Larry Cheek says:

    John,
    Does that mean that we should place our trust in someone whom we are sure that is opposed to Christianity?

  25. John F says:

    Larry: “One thing that we can be for certain about is there will never be a Christian candidate placed into office.” Perhaps you have not heard of James A. Garfield, our 20th president and member of the Disciples of Christ and who quite often preached on a regular basis. Of course, he was “Disciples” not CofC (cofC) and worshiped with instruments so perhaps he was not a true Christian. (I can provide to you Jerry Rushford’s thesis if you wish to follow up.)

    My own first criteria is the value of life (beginning with abortion and going on from there). That means I would feel compelled to vote for a raging Communist or Socialist if that upheld those values even to my own personal detriment (financial, social, etc).

  26. Gary says:

    Lyndon Johnson was a member of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Being a Texan he was well acquainted with Churches of Christ. As a Senator he spoke at a large dinner in Memphis in 1959 honoring N.B. Hardeman. He had some unsavory personal habits but he pushed through civil rights and voting rights laws that we take for granted today but which were bitterly opposed by most white Southerners in the 1960’s. He was slso the father of Medicare. I’m not sure if Medicaid came with Medicare or was enacted later.

    Ronald Reagan grew up also in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) of which his mother was a devout member. He graduated from Eureka College, a Disciples institution and taught Sunday School in a Disciples church well into his 20’s. His lifelong favorite novelist was a Disciple whose name I can’t remember. Nancy was Presbyterian so that’s what he was known as as President.

    In Great Britain the Prime Minister during WW1 was a member of Churches of Christ. This is off the top of my head but I believe his name was David Lloyd-George. He was a member of the Liberal Party.

  27. laymond says:

    Reading through the comments, brings a frown to my face, and a sad recognition of truth to what I have always questioned about the two branches of the church of Christ , even different members in the very same congregation. We have members like Jay who believes we receive the Holy Ghost and his guidance when we repent, and those like A.J. who says we must trust God,or the H.G. guidance in such matters as politics. then we have people like myself that say God turned over such earthy matters to the individual, when he gave humankind the powers and freedom of self determination, even determining whether or not to follow Jesus Christ, we make that decision on what we determine is best for our soul, and what we think God wants us to do. And when I go to vote I will vote for the person whom I believe will fill the job of president better. And the person with the most qualifications will get my vote.

  28. laymond says:

    I am not going to the polling place in early November to choose a religious leader, I made that decision when I was baptized into the name of Jesus, and I have not abandoned that decision, And I can’t foresee anything that could happen to change my mind.

  29. laymond says:

    Larry said; ” What I am interested in seeing is such a great landslide that it places a great test upon the Electoral College to allow the popular vote to place a candidate into office. Until then, why do we need to spend all this money to secure a popular vote?”

    I totally agree with Larry, to be fair to the individual voter the electoral of each state should be represented by the personal vote, I mean it you get 40% of the personal vote you should get 40% of the electoral vote. there are very few states that divide their electoral votes according to personal vote count. I don’t believe it is a fair way to decide a national leader, when one personal vote can decide all of the electoral votes in a state like Texas. Winner take all might be fine in a card game, but not in an election to determine the leader of the free world.

  30. John says:

    Larry, first of all, who are you talking about, that is “opposed to Christianity”. But, secondly, if someone is qualified, I don’t care what religion the person holds to. Besides, Trump acts more un-Christian than any candidate that I can remember in my life time…and I’m sixty six years old. I’ve seen a few. But his un-Christian ways don’t seem to bother a lot of good church folks. So, I’m not sure what you’re concerned about. If we can elect someone whose ways are un-Christian, what bothers you about electing someone who is non-Christian?

  31. Larry Cheek says:

    John,
    Have you not noticed the governments intervention into Christian freedom and ideals within the last decade? Would you expect that to change if the present party continues, I mean with a candidate who was in the white house in a previous 8 years was Christianity less restricted 16 years ago or were any restrictions elevated during that time?

  32. laymond says:

    Larry, don’t leave us sitting in the dark, name some of the restrictions that have been placed on
    Christianity ,( in the last eight years ) and please confine Christianity to what Christ taught.
    Because that is what Christianity is. You are the one making the accusations , you are the one to explain what you mean. please expound.

  33. Christopher says:

    I have yet to hear John criticize Clinton, which one would expect from one not voting for either. Who are you planning to vote for, John (in the interest of full disclosure)? I have said who I plan to vote for and why. Will you do the same?

  34. Larry Cheek says:

    Laymond,
    I said 16 years, would you not understand that to be the last 4 presidential terms? How are you affected by abortion issues, sexual misconduct, do you see the scriptures condoning the laws which have been placed upon us, bathroom facilities not only in the workplace but schools and all our facilities? How about the public proclamation that we were not founded as a Christian Nation. Wasn’t that statement made less than 16 years ago. For just a few of the many.

  35. dwight says:

    I would gather that the chipping away at Christianity largely has been happening since the 60s as in the freedom that has been embraced is the freedom from all social norms and values of which many of them are based on religious Biblical principles. Many have moved from God to self as society has become richer and more comfortable with making everything about themselves. Many of the magazines reflect the pursuit of self and self improvement/ happiness…Self..,Vogue….Men’s Health…Entertainment Weekly, etc. The internet has opened up porn. Etc. Society has become more ungodly, because God is decreasingly no longer in the view of much of society.

  36. laymond says:

    Just as I thought, you are not talking about Christianity, you are speaking of social morals. Do you believe we should pass laws forcing people to attend church, and control what the public watches on the net. If you were to check back you might blame the internet freedoms for the moral decline not government officials. If I am not wrong the government tries to stay away from church rules and regulations, so if the churches are in moral decline, maybe we should look in the mirror to find out why. maybe if Christians did a better job God would not be decreasing within society. unless i am again mistaken it is the job of the church , not the government to preach the gospel and bring sinners to Christ. and teach moral living.

  37. Larry Cheek says:

    Laymond,
    You are denying that government has passed laws that restructure Christian principles?

  38. laymond says:

    Larry Cheek says:
    “How about the public proclamation that we were not founded as a Christian Nation.”

    The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

    When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

    Larry, I do believe this country was founded on freedoms.

  39. laymond says:

    No Larry, I am asking what laws have been passed that restructure Christian principles? Name one law that prohibits a Christian from living a Christian life, under penalty of law. I know some laws that prohibit Christians from infringing on other’s rights. But those laws usually apply to only those who are not living a Christian life anyway. You can’t infringe on others just because they don’t live by your rules. And I can’t see how others living by different rules, could infringe on your right to live as a Christian.

  40. Bob Brandon says:

    Jay, you’ve reached the edge of your envelope in these matters. Contained in your response to Gary was this:

    “Second, you completely ignore the fact that many who poll in favor of Trump do so because they find Hillary even worse. You have nothing negative to say about her, which makes your objectivity somewhat suspect, don’t you think?”

    Everyone’s subjectivity is always somewhat suspect. And accusations of “completely ignoring” one thing or another is generally a cover for one’s own complete ignoring. You project onto others a fervor that mirrored in your heated rejection of her candidacy.

    As a retired intel officer and a trial lawyer, and based on the above statement – and the tenor of your entire response to Gary – I figure you’re a Trump voter, but there’s plenty of time for one to either confirm or refute my assessment. Me? I’m a HRC voter, because I have no intention of lending my support to an outright fascist and want a better future for my wife and daughters. As such, however, I expect Trump to carry Alabama, which is doing its own part by suppressing voter registration in predominately black counties.

    And as imperfect as HRC invariably is, and she in fact is a very mediocre candidate even for the base of Democratic voters in this country, she’s safer right now than Trump and which makes for a pretty sad state of affairs in this society. Electing HRC this fall doesn’t mean that she’ll be particularly successful or re-elected in four years. It does mean we stave off fascism for four more years. As David Frum puts it, Trump is “an authoritarian amoral president with undisclosed financial interests, under the sway of an unfriendly foreign power, unchecked by Congress.” If Alabamians want to vote for that, that’s their right, that is to say, the right of those who actually get to exercise their franchise.

    I can live with a HRC presidency under those circumstances. Under her presidency, your congregation, as well as mine, will continue to meet and delude ourselves that we’re meaning to do God’s work when we spend the vast majority of our contributions to keep up our clubhouses and pay our staffs. None of that will change. Our banterings about the “public square” will go on (I actually have a copy of Neuhaus’s book “Naked Public Square” more as a souvenir to poorly thought through ideas once held in my youth), notwithstanding the fact that the early church deal with the naked public square of their own day and endured. They didn’t whine about it either.

    What will change are, for one, my expectations. I thought our Churches of Christ might be able to ride out the inevitable demographic, economic, and cultural changes in this country – and elsewhere in this world – by reminding ourselves who we really were and what we’re really about. I don’t think we’re going to make it after all. We’re just too eaten up with the American disease. I have been advising my daughters of my impressions in that regard, and I hope they will not confuse the true gospel for the ersatz garbage being ladled about. If, you and yours have gone as far as what passes for “progressive” Church of Christ thinking can reach, You won’t make it; you won’t be able to see the Samaritan as the neighbor.

    See ya.

  41. Dwight says:

    Unfortunately we vote with our gut, as we have very little insight to what the next president will do or not do…we can only guess. Both Trump and Clinton are amoral with self interest at heart. Possibly the only plus side of Trump is that possibly the Republican party will have some sway over him. What I don’t like about Hillary, even though she is a better candidate and knows the system, is that she will pick liberal supreme court justices and bow to the liberal interest groups that push liberal agendas.
    Trump on other hand may not bow to anybody and that is equally dangerous.
    Rock>US<Hard Place

  42. John F. says:

    While some question the application of this: it is still my basis — sorry, but I did not introduce political discussion: the candidate that places the highest value on human life –from conception to life to conflict to death — will have my vote. If that means i vote for a dictator (if such were possible) rather than a libertarian, so be it.

  43. laymond says:

    John F. where in scripture does Jesus agree with you, that we should place “the highest value”
    on human life , or life on this earth. Value life over all else,? Does a true Christian believe Jesus said that. I seem to recall someone saying if you value this life most highly, you will surely loose it.

    If you lead your life as if it is the only thing of importance, you are bound to loose it.

  44. Christopher says:

    Bob wrote:

    “I’m a HRC voter, because I have no intention of lending my support to an outright fascist and want a better future for my wife and daughters. ”

    You must not be much of a trial lawyer if you, like most “progressives”, don’t understand that name calling is NOT an argument. To assert that Trump is a “fascist” is absurd, because the claim relies upon historical ignorance and unsound reasoning. He may not be an admirable or especially bright man. But he is no where close to being the monster LBJ was. And certainly not a Hitler or Mussolini.

  45. Dwight says:

    Laymond, I understand Jesus to have given his life for the life of others. Now this wasn’t so that they would live on this earth, but be saved while living so they could live again.
    Your argument pulls from a persons self worth and not his appreciation for the life of another.
    Jesus, John 15:13 “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.”
    The perception of our life must be as a servant and meaningless compared to another’s life.
    Now where Trump and Hillary fall in all of this is hard to say as Hillary is pro-abortion and Trump hated it, but was at one time pro-choice, but at least now Trump isn’t.

  46. Profile photo of Jay Guin Jay Guin says:

    Laymond,

    I agree. The scriptures don’t make human life the highest priority. Obviously, the scriptures see human life as connected to the image of God, and so value human life very highly. But the very highest? Well, there are several cases where God considered other things more important. Jesus allowed Lazarus to die. God took Uzzah’s life. Took the lives of the first born sons of all of Egypt. Didn’t kill Cain for his murder of Abel. Countless examples.

    Pope John Paul II argued about a “culture of life,” to oppose abortion and capital punishment — and while the Bible speaks to both, neither is declared the most important thing. The most important thing is —

    (1 Cor. 15:3-5 ESV) 3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.

    — which is why Paul had no ethical problems with risking his life for the sake of the gospel. The gospel is more important.

  47. Dwight says:

    Jay, I would disagree. God and Jesus is the mostest important (I know mostest isn’t a word), but man comes below that, not the gospel, after all the gospel was given for man sake. Jesus condemned the Pharisee for putting the law and the words of greater importance than the people around them, of which the law and words were meant for. Now if we are talking about our physicality, then that is indeed secondary to our spirituality and spiritual aim. God didn’t come to keep us physically alive, but to make us spiritually alive. But since our life is both physical and spiritual, until it is not physical, Jesus died for the world to live in Him.
    Considering the scripture you gave, perhaps you meant “the message of the gospel” is the most important to which I would agree, for through it man gains life. Not physical life, but spiritual.

  48. John F says:

    Laymond / Jay: Dwight’s words ring true; I spoke in the current political setting (I did not bring it up). Is there a better criteria suggested? I will listen. “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” John 10:10 To deny life’s value greatly diminishes (if not destroys) the purpose of the incarnation.

  49. Gary says:

    As I watch the news this morning about Trump’s predatory view of women it’s an incredibly sad indictment of white American Evangelicalism that Mormons are the first to withdraw their support of Trump while almost nothing is being heard from white Evangelicals. Political power and influence is the idol that the majority of voting white Evangelicals now worship rather than our Savior Jesus Christ. The Evangelicals may well follow in withdrawing their support from Trump but we’ve now arrived at a point in our country where Mormons draw the moral and ethical boundaries. I never thought I’d say this but thank God for the Mormons.

  50. Larry Cheek says:

    Is it normal for Christians to not extend grace which they have freely received from someone who confesses that what they had done in the past is wrong? There is something about the actions which are being promoted which is totally unlike our God.

  51. Gary says:

    Larry, of course grace and forgiveness are to be freely offered. That’s a long way however from supporting a, at least, wannabe sexual predator to lead our nation. Accounts are already coming out of the Donald actually groping women. If conservative Christians can swallow this and still vote for Trump they stand for nothing. Conservatism is no guarantee of avoiding the support of evil. There were even Nazi Mennonites in the 30’s and 40’s.

  52. Alabama John says:

    The USA will have to have a real bad person (one who participates in locker room talk) is not near bad enough. to straighten out all the corruption we have in our government.
    Heck, I even do that with my wife when I point out a butt for her to see that I admire.

    It will take a Hitler TYPE to get it done.

    A politician like we have had in the past cannot gwet it done by dealing with those in office now.

    It will take a person that builds a strong force that can destroy the graft and corruption that rules our country now.

    Of course that will not be a nice person but a srtong bully my way or the highway type to get it done by surrounding himself with what many consider bad folks that will run over our politicians enriching themselves off us.

    If we don’t elect a real butt hole, as far as politicians go, we will be, soon, a second class country as history shows us happens to countries that behave like ours is doing. That type person it will take is not going to be a nice guy after getting in office.

    Our thinking must change from everyone being a nice christian person to one doing the bad things necessary to rebuild our countries thinking and justice system. Only then can we relax our guard and God will help us.

    Remember. all Gods appointed, chosen leaders were not nice to their adversaries. Heads were even cut off. Those that won the wars God wanted them to win didn’t do it with talk, but with blood being spilled, not on their knees, but with swords in their hands ridding the adversaries and their rules and corruption by killing them.

    Those on the take today may be too strong now and if so, Trump will be killed in some manner.

  53. Larry Cheek says:

    Gary,
    You speak as if Mr. Trump is presently practicing what was exposed. Did you not hear his confession that he admitted that he was wrong? It takes a very special person to not lie about his events that which have been exposed. We have all seen the direction that was taken by former politicians. Have you noticed that they are set on being placed again into a position with out even an apology for lies that have been exposed.
    History has exposed the early Christians did not readily forgive Paul either. Would Christians really believe that they could withdraw support from one party without that withdrawn support being converted to support for the opposite party? How much more Christlike or less sinful is the opposite party candidate?

  54. dwight says:

    I don’t wish to vote for a megalomaniac, which leads me without a person to vote for, unless I vote for the one who I think will do the less harm. I won’t tell you who that is, but the chances that my vote will elect one who will tank America any more than it is already being tanked and will bring it back to its “glory” is very slim. I have to do my Christian duty and be a Christian despite who is leading or misleading the country. One of my favorite movies which just came on the other day is “A Face in the Crowd” with young Andy Griffith. It is a must see for those who think they understand the person who they vote for past the presentation. We at best are taking a wild guess and an educated guess based on what we think we see based on what we want in throwing our vote for anybody.

  55. Gary says:

    Larry, does it really take a “very special person” to admit that he is wrong when his offending words are on tape for the whole world to hear? Wow, that’s a new low for the low bar for Trump. That any conservative Christian would still back Trump for president at this point just shows how far the atrophy of white conservative American Evangelicalism has progressed. Their toleration of misogyny and racism in a man whom they think would advance their political agenda is pathetic. This version of Christianity deserves to die out.

  56. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    That any conservative Christian would still back Trump for president at this point just shows how far the atrophy of white conservative American Evangelicalism has progressed.

    Gary,
    That’s a bit ridiculous…and I am NOT a Trump supporter. You are ignoring the fact that Christians are faced with only two legitimate choices for POTUS: DT or HC. What would you have Trump supporters do? Cast their vote for HC? Because she is a pillar of morality and virtue? Come on, man!

    Their toleration of misogyny and racism in a man whom they think would advance their political agenda is pathetic.

    And the toleration of unrestricted murder of the unborn in a woman whom they think would advance their political agenda in not pathetic?? It cuts both ways, brother.

    This version of Christianity deserves to die out.

    You seem to be walking a very dangerous line, Gary. There are honest, sincere brothers & sisters in Christ who will vote for DT on the sole basis of his alleged pro-life platform. Conversely, there are honest, sincere brothers & sisters in Christ who will vote for HC on the sole basis of her alleged compassion for the poor. When we begin determining who is a proper Christian based on the highly subjective and nuanced decision to vote for a particular political candidate, we have added to the Gospel.

    The country is going to lose no matter which one of these clowns is elected. And we are getting exactly what we deserve. Thankfully, the Christian hope will not be realized through political means. King Jesus will continue to reign regardless of the outcome of this election. Things may suck, but may we all remember that we are Christians first and Americans second.

  57. Alabama John says:

    Its all of us against Washington. All other dividing lines are being put aside and that just might be the start of something good.

  58. Gary says:

    Kevin, you are welcome of course to your opinion. But the very fact that so many conservative Christians can vote for Donald Trump with a clear conscience makes a mockery of any serious discussion of overcoming racism in the church which is the subject of Jay’s post. The whole concept of Christians using political power to try to in effect force women to bear and give birth to children is dubious at best. I can’t think of any possible support for it in the New Testament. To be sure many conservative Christians seem overly enamored with the possibilities of reimposing the Law of Moses on Christ’s church today- or at least the parts of it that fit their agendas. Once the line of wishing for a theocracy is crossed then I suppose it would make sense to allow the state to police what women do with their bodies. But do you really think that signing on the dotted line to support a now theoretical overturning of Roe v. Wade justifies voting for a man who spouts misogyny and racism? Yes many conservative Christians have come to that conclusion and yes I hope that that perversion of Christianity will die out. But to get back to the subject of Jay’s post how can anyone seriously think that people of color in our communities would possibly want to be part of a church where Christians can vote for Donald Trump with a clear conscience? Anyone who can believe that such churches are going to help overcome racism is seriously out of touch with reality.

  59. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Ahh…I see. I have an “opinion” and you have a “fact.” Just fyi, you might want to brush up on your definitions. I’ll make sure that I tell my family of color about your “facts.” Should make for interesting dinner conversation because they are voting for Trump…not so much Trump “supporters” as anti-Hillary voters. Imagine…you, a white male, chastising people of color over how they vote. Could anything be more condescending? One might even call it racist…?

    Another newsflash, Gary…one can be pro-life without seeking to reimpose the Law of Moses. Most people oppose abortion because they believe it is wrong. I consider it to be the willful taking of innocent human life. It has absolutely nothing to do with the Law of Moses and everything to do with protecting the most innocent among us.

  60. Larry Cheek says:

    I would really believe that Christians who read their Bibles would be able to also interpret that this attack about “racism” is only a political by word. Would anyone believe that Trump does not employ workers from all races? Our employment laws prohibits discrimination by race. He would be on the “hot” seat from several jurisdictions of our government if they found that he had rebelled against this law. What really bothers me is the fact that we have government buildings protected by all kinds of electronic equipment and sensors to insure that no one can bring weapons inside (even ordinary pocket knives, keys, almost anything metal or anything with any sharp edge), o yes and you (dedicated American) are not exempt from inspection of these items. Yet government will allow immigrants to come into this country illegally and remain here without obeying our laws regardless of their race. I was a member of the military and believe that one of the major problems is knowing who is the enemy. In the church it is much worse because Satan fought the church from the beginning and was not winning therefore being a smart adversary he changed his tactics into infiltrating into the church to change it from within. The same picture is being observed in our country which was begun as a Christian Nation. The evidence of a Christian Nation is permanently carved into many of our government buildings and documents.

  61. Larry Cheek says:

    Kevin,
    Gary is probably more concerned about appointees for the Supreme Court. I believe that a change in administration could bring about some different laws than Gary would be comfortable with. The Law of Moses seems to be offensive to him.

  62. Gary says:

    Kevin, of course a relative handful of people of color will vote for Trump. No surprise there. But Trump’s support is fueled overwhelmingly by white resentment. Trump’s campaign is the high point for conservative white resentment. A decade from now ongoing demographic changes will make it impossible for a man like Trump to become the nominee of a major political party. But in the meantime the ugliness of American white resentment is on center stage for all the world to see. The most dangerous group demographically in our nation at this time are angry white straight conservative men. Their long reign is coming to an end and they are furious about it. But to get back to the subject of Jay’s post how can there even be a serious discussion about overcoming racism in the church when so many conservative churches are full of these same angry white straight conservative men? The rest of the country will more and more be running as far as possible away from such churches.

  63. Gary says:

    Larry, would you want to return to women who have been raped having to marry their rapist? How about stoning rebellious children? The truth is that all sane people today would find much that is offensive in the Law of Moses. It was given only to the Hebrew people who were at that time not far removed from the Neolithic age. It was never intended to be a universal law for all people for all time. It still has much wisdom to impart from our study of it today. But to try to reimpose it on the people of God today, in part or in whole, is a strange endeavor for any Christian to undertake.

  64. Gary says:

    Larry, wasn’t Trump characterizing Mexicans as rapists a racist taunt? Or his contention that a Mexican-American judge could not be fair because of his ethnicity? That conservatives can so easily overlook and explain away racism is deeply disturbing. Anyone who cannot see racism as a major problem in our country is part of the problem. By the way we know statistically that immigrants, documented or not, commit crimes at lower rates than native born Americans. What else then can explain conservative resentment against immigrants but racism?

  65. Dwight says:

    Gary, we must step back and realize that neither one of our choices for president are Christian and who we vote for isn’t a litmus test for a Christian. If so then it amazes me why so many church going people from the black communities have voted the Democratic ticket despite the pro-abortion stance and the pro-Muslim/anti-Muslim stance entrenched in the Democratic party. Hillary has been clocked in at saying some very bad things about Jews, women, etc. I am not saying this to absolve Trump, but rather to point out that we have as our candidates some rather amoral people and those who vote do so hoping that their candidate is the best candidate.

  66. Monty says:

    It is a shame that if one is to vote in this election cycle that it is definitely a choice of the lessor of two evils. One is the evil you know and the other is the evil you don’t know. They have pretty much both been proven to be liars, the only difference perhaps is that Hillary has lied repeatedly to the American public, and to Congress. Yet somehow, she skates by in things that the average American would be put in jail for proving what many have suspected all along that there is a standard of justice for the rich and powerful and then one for the not so powerful. The old Trump of 10 years ago has said and I’m sure done despicable things, maybe he’s the same person he was then. But we all know what Hillary’s husband has a reputation for. Has he changed? It’s not really fair to say Bill has changed and Trump is incapable of change, or vice versa. If Bill’s antics of the past and Hillary’s lies to the American people and to Congress and her scrubbing clean her emails isn’t enough for concern then why should Trumps antics 11 years ago be a concern or saying a judge with a Hispanic descent who is ruling on his case be as controversial as lying to Congress and to the people of this great land? Trump wants to heavily vet or not allow Muslims into the country coming from Syria, pretty pragmatic approach I think given what is happening in Europe. Hillary on the other hand would bring in tens of thousands of these refugees. I’m all for helping refugees but that doesn’t of necessity mean we bring them here, pay for their housing and give them money to live on each month and pay for all their healthcare. No one pays for my healthcare and I was born here. There are literally millions of Americans that if we just wanted to feel good about ourselves(such as the homeless and starving children) and be benevolent we could help without having to bring in people who by-in-large don’t like us or our way of life. If you want to bring in refugees displaced by ISIS how abut bringing in the tens of thousands of Christians? Why is the percentage of Christians given asylum here so small? Then there is the whole Supreme Court decisions to be made by either Hillary or Trump. Neither candidate can run on integrity. What ‘s left then is the issues like our borders, the Supreme Court, the Muslim refugee crisis, our growing debt, jobs, the plight of our inner cities, etc. More of the same failed policies or do we vote for change? I seem to remember Obama winning the first time around because folks wanted “change.”

  67. Gary says:

    Guys if you remember I said earlier I’m not at all saying that all Christians should vote for Clinton. Since I began voting in 1974 I have only voted for a Democrat for President once. There have been three elections in which I did not cast a ballot for President. I did go to the polls to vote in other races. So I’m not trying to be partisan. But does it not bother you that Trump’s misogyny is too much for most Mormons but not apparently for most Evangelical Christians? The difference reveals a low view of women among conservative Christians. What if we changed his comments just a little. What if he had said that he had tried like a b____ to f___ a married man- and that because he was rich and powerful he could grab young guy’s b____ whenever he wanted? Would there be a single elected Republican who would still be supporting him today? We all know that everyone in politics and government would have run away from him as if he had Ebola. The difference my friends is that misogyny and even sexual assault to a point against women is tolerated or lightly dismissed by a lot of conservative Christians even in 2016.

  68. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    But does it not bother you that Trump’s misogyny is too much for most Mormons but not apparently for most Evangelical Christians? The difference reveals a low view of women among conservative Christians.

    Gary,
    The problem is that you are making inaccurate assumptions and reaching unwarranted conclusions. This comment is an excellent illustration. You are neglected a mountain of other considerations in your analysis. Most evangelicals that I know who have decided to vote for DT are doing so based on one issue: the abortion of innocent human babies. These people don’t “support” DT. They don’t wear his hats or affix his bumper stickers. They didn’t vote for him in the primary. They recognize that he is deeply flawed on a host of issues. But so is the other candidate! So, what to do? Most of these evangelicals have decided to vote for DT rather than vote for a rabid supporter of abortion, to include the gruesome practice of partial-birth abortions. This is THE issue for many evangelicals. And there is nothing whatsoever wrong with that.

    You are basically criticizing these evangelicals for not elevating DT’s misogyny above HC’s murder of the unborn. That’s the problem when you paint with too broad of a brushstroke, which is exactly what you have done. You are guilty of stereotyping an entire segment of the population. Something tells me that you don’t appreciate it when it happens to you…

  69. Gary says:

    Kevin, Hillary Clinton has never murdered an unborn baby and Donald Trump being President would not prevent a single abortion. You cannot produce any biblical support for Christians using the power of the government to force women to give birth to children. Anyone who thinks Roe v. Wade will be overturned if we just put conservative Republicans in charge is living in a fantasy world. This idea that if a presidential candidate opposes abortion nothing else matters is destructive to conservative Christians who buy into it. As I’ve said before Evangelical/conservative Christians who support Trump are only hastening the demise of this political brand of Christianity that started with Jerry Falwell two generations ago. Maybe that will be a good thing. But to the extent Churches of Christ buy into this political-religious identity they will speed their own demise.

  70. Dwight says:

    Kevin, I believe you nailed the issue correctly. No Christian wants Trump in the office, but when faced with Hillary, Trump seems less morally problematic. Many people will vote against one person as opposed to voting for the other person. I know many Christians that have deep misgivings about Trump’ character, but view Hillary’s character as worse. I view them as both likely megalomaniacs who believe that they can do whatever they want to…one of them will be president no matter what. We all will vote our conscience.

  71. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Kevin, Hillary Clinton has never murdered an unborn baby and Donald Trump being President would not prevent a single abortion.

    You’ve missed the point entirely. For many evangelicals, their Christian conscience will not allow them to vote for someone who promotes, condones, and facilitates the widespread slaughter of the innocent.

    You cannot produce any biblical support for Christians using the power of the government to force women to give birth to children. Anyone who thinks Roe v. Wade will be overturned if we just put conservative Republicans in charge is living in a fantasy world.

    Again, you have missed the point entirely. I can find plenty of biblical support for the evil of shedding innocent blood. It matters not whether a politician does it himself/herself or not. Advocating, funding, and appointing pro-abortion judges makes one culpable in the eyes of many evangelicals.

    This idea that if a presidential candidate opposes abortion nothing else matters is destructive to conservative Christians who buy into it.

    That’s your opinion. These same evangelicals would tell you that it is better to avoid any complicity in the shedding of innocent blood than to worry about political consequences. Peter had the same attitude as I recall.

  72. Gary says:

    Kevin, I think you’ve described the situation perfectly. I don’t question the sincerity and heartfelt convictions of the Christians you describe. If that’s their belief they of course should follow their conscience. The flip side of their mindset however is that racism, misogyny and even threatening to imprison one’s opponent if elected are all now acceptable so long as a candidate signs on to the now 44 year quest to overturn a Supreme Court decision, Roe v. Wade. Time will tell but this mindset seems like a path to oblivion. I don’t see many Americans going forward being attracted to churches made up of this group of Christians. Even looking only at the abortion question this mindset would seem to only weaken the prolife cause over time by weakening the churches that tend to be prolife. All of us would do well to contemplate the ongoing demographic changes in our country that will reach a tipping point in the next decade. Religious movements, denominations, and political parties and philosophies that are now overwhelmingly white are going to fade away. The future of America is multi-racial, multi-ethnic and multi-cultural. Even if the abortion issue trumps all else the prolife movement has no future as presently constituted. It is an overwhelming white, conservative group of folks. By embracing a racist, misogynistic presidential candidate the prolife movement is gravely injuring itself.

  73. Larry Cheek says:

    Gary,
    Am I understanding you correctly as you seem to be affirming that Christians must align themselves to the actions that aborting a child is the right of a mother? You do not see that action as murder? We must do that because of The Supreme Court ruling of 44 years ago? Our own laws have prosecuted a killer of double murder if they have killed a mother who was pregnant. But, if the mother decides that she wants to kill her baby it is legal?

  74. laymond says:

    “a rabid supporter of abortion,” or a supporter of women’s rights. Kevin, when you exaggerate to the point to which you seem to want to go and try to change another’s words . in my opinion that could be considered a lie , especially when it is intentionally said to harm another. And when it is just not true.

  75. laymond says:

    Larry said; ” if the mother decides that she wants to kill her baby it is legal?” Or abort a fetus that with God’s help might someday become a baby human being. “Christians” seem to think if they use extreme language it enforces the point they are trying to make. When in fact it only incites hate and anger in other “Christians” which is a sin. And the one who incites this hate in other people will pay a price for doing so.

  76. Gary says:

    Larry, I do not believe that our government has the authority to effectively force women to bear and give birth to children. That doesn’t make abortion right but not everything that is wrong can be made illegal. Ultimately it is a decision for the woman to make. On a practical level for so many conservative Christians to embrace a man who is racist and misogynistic in the name of opposing abortion is a poor strategy for success to say the least. It’s the opposite of making friends for the prolife movement. Conservatives just keep doubling down in directions that are only hastening their demise.

  77. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    laymnd,

    I stated: “Most of these evangelicals have decided to vote for DT rather than vote for a rabid supporter of abortion, to include the gruesome practice of partial-birth abortions.”

    That’s a true statement in my opinion. You can spin it however you want—‘supporter of women’s reproductive rights’—but the end result is the same: more children slaughtered in the womb. Is HC a rabid supporter of abortion? I think so. Oh sure, she would phrase it differently, but we all know it is just semantics. The Southern States rebelled purely for States’ rights too; nothing to do with slavery and cheap labor at all. Right.

    Question: “My question is at what point does someone have constitutional rights, and are you saying that a child, on its due date, just hours before delivery still has no constitutional rights?” Answer: “Under our law, that is the case, Paula. I support Roe v Wade.”

    HC supports Planned Parenthood and opposes any decrease in federal funding for this organization. Yet Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards recently commented, “We need to challenge or repeal every [abortion] single restriction that’s out there.” That includes restrictions on abortions into the ninth month. After the release of several appalling PP videos last year, HC affirmed her support for the organization: “I’m proud to stand with Planned Parenthood.”

    HC opposed the 2015 U.S. House approved Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act to protect unborn babies 20 weeks and older from excruciating late abortions.

  78. Dwight says:

    Gary, If this statement didn’t include some realities I might agree “I do not believe that our government has the authority to effectively force women to bear and give birth to children. That doesn’t make abortion right but not everything that is wrong can be made illegal. Ultimately it is a decision for the woman to make.”
    But women aren’t being forced to have children, after all rape is not legal, but are being allowed now to abort that which they have made. Rape constitutes so little of the abortions, as most abortions are by women who have consensually had sex. They made the decision to have unprotected sex, which facilitates, according to biology, children.
    Sex creates an extremely high probability of children, but no sex creates no probability of children.
    And if I am not mistaken a man is involved in the making of a child, thus it is not all the women’s child in the womb, even though she may be carrying it. Paternity test never come back and say, “Nope, it has all the mother’s DNA”.
    I think Larry has well pointed out our hypocrisy “Our own laws have prosecuted a killer of double murder if they have killed a mother who was pregnant. But, if the mother decides that she wants to kill her baby it is legal?”
    It isn’t a baby when the mother harms it, but it is when someone else it is.

  79. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    On a practical level for so many conservative Christians to embrace a man who is racist and misogynistic in the name of opposing abortion is a poor strategy for success to say the least. It’s the opposite of making friends for the prolife movement. Conservatives just keep doubling down in directions that are only hastening their demise.

    That may be true, but it is also irrelevant to many evangelicals. They [not all for sure] care more about doing the right thing than about being political. “You shall not follow a crowd to do evil” still resonates. And many evangelicals believe that voting for a politician with an established pro-abortion platform is following evil or partaking in their evil ways. Again, it’s not that they love DT. They just see him as the lesser of two evils. I get it. I’ll probably abstain for this election, but I certainly don’t look down my nose at those deplorables who intend to vote pro-life.

  80. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Larry said; ” if the mother decides that she wants to kill her baby it is legal?” Or abort a fetus that with God’s help might someday become a baby human being. “Christians” seem to think if they use extreme language it enforces the point they are trying to make. When in fact it only incites hate and anger in other “Christians” which is a sin. And the one who incites this hate in other people will pay a price for doing so.

    If Larry’s very rational and well-reasoned post incites you to hate and anger, then you should probably find something else to do with your spare time. Seriously. I just read his post slowly and carefully to see if I missed something, but I didn’t. He wrote:

    Gary,
    Am I understanding you correctly as you seem to be affirming that Christians must align themselves to the actions that aborting a child is the right of a mother? You do not see that action as murder? We must do that because of The Supreme Court ruling of 44 years ago? Our own laws have prosecuted a killer of double murder if they have killed a mother who was pregnant. But, if the mother decides that she wants to kill her baby it is legal?

    Gary is exactly right. You can Google it. People have been found guilty of two counts of homicide when they killed a pregnant woman. It’s absolutely true. But that same woman could have chosen to kill her baby on the same day with no legal consequences and with federal aid to help pay for it. Riddle me that…?

  81. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    …Larry is exactly right. Sorry for the confusion.

  82. Monty says:

    Gary said,

    “and even threatening to imprison one’s opponent if elected are all now acceptable ”

    Gary that is not an accurate synopsis of what he said, he said, “He, if elected, would appoint a special prosecutor to look into her lies concerning her emails.”(not a direct quote ). He only spoke what millions of deplorables feel, that there is one system of law for the powerless and another for the powerful(especially if you are an Obama surrogate). She then came back and said something about aren’t you(audience) glad that we don’t have someone with the temperament of a DT running our country , to which he quipped, “because you’d be in jail.”

    Now I saw this even debated on Fox News and of course the left wing media is trying to make more out of it then was said(can’t imagine that). I took it that she was guilty of crimes(millions feel that way), that many people(as he said and others) have done far less and been locked up concerning confidential govt. info, but that she was not being prosecuted because of the Obama admin. In other words, if he had been President she would not have him as President keeping her from what she deserved as Obama has. He never said He would “lock her up”( he knows he doesn’t have that power or wouldn’t as President and yet everyone on the left is trying to make him out to be someone who would do away with our system of law(makes me laugh). Obama is that person who through executive privilege is trying to change our government.

    I happened into a small town local family restaurant the day after Comey came out and said no prosecution was coming for HC. It was the talk of the restaurant with virtually everyone(a dozen or so people) saying the same thing, that “if that had been me or you, we’d be in jail.’ But we’re not HC.

  83. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    BTW Gary, I also don’t look down my nose at those Christians who intend to vote for HC.

  84. Alabama John says:

    WE do not know the wrongs others have done like Hillary does.

    Being in politics all these years she knows a lot we do not know about many in power.

    That ability to tell keeps her safe.

    Throwing the book at those like us doesn’t cause those in power to lose any sleep worrying about what we might do back to them.

    Fill the privately owned prisons as they are a great money maker for politicians that own them.

  85. Gary says:

    Guys you just don’t get it. The issues that are so important to you are not important to a growing majority of the country. If you think the country is moving in a liberal direction now just wait until the next decade as older, conservative white folks become a much smaller portion of the population and people of color and moderate and liberal whites take the reins of control in our country. Roe v. Wade will never be overturned. If three Republican Presidents couldn’t accomplish a national reversal on abortion it’s sure not going to happen now. Every year more conservative/Republican voters die than are coming on board. Few young adults care about the issues that are so important to Trump voters. It’s over guys when it comes to conservative white people imposing their will on the rest of us. If you’ve noticed almost no community of color in the US votes conservative. Asians were a Republican constituency in the 90’s. The right-wing agenda and rhetoric is anathema to them sending them running into the arms of the Democrats. Every four year voting cycle the American electorate becomes about 2% less white. I’m not suggesting that you should go along to get along. Follow your conscience in everything you do. But you’re wasting your time working toward a mythical day when everyone wakes up one morning and becomes conservative on abortion, homosexuality and the rest of the right-wing agenda.

  86. Dwight says:

    Gary, what I have seen and still see it in other countries is that conservatism dies until it is needed again and then it comes back like a lion, stronger than ever. As the country moves into a more liberal stance and it will, a time will come when it will be seen as going the wrong way, collectively. This is kind of happening now as it is the only reason that Trump is in there on the conservative ticket, as he is barely a conservative. People want a change from the change even if it means a drastic change into the unknown. Now when times of national disaster hits, be it economical or physical, then people tend to vote more conservative. When times are relatively good people vote more liberal as that is the trend anyway.
    And trends to happen.
    And swinging happens.
    People vote for change and then they often have buyer’s remorse, and then vote for change again.

  87. laymond says:

    Kevin said; “Southern States rebelled purely for States’ rights too; nothing to do with slavery and cheap labor at all. Right. ” State rights, and individual rights are diametrically opposed positions , are you saying state rights should over rule a woman’s right to choose, what happens to her body. Or should men have individual rights , but the lowly woman should be ruled by state rights.

  88. Gary says:

    Dwight, what you’re saying boils down to fear working in favor of conservatives. With that I agree. Unfortunately the conservatism that feeds on fear includes racism, misogyny and xenophobia. Exhibit A is Donald Trump. A resurgence of such conservatism seems like an odd thing for a Christian to hope for.

  89. laymond says:

    “And many evangelicals believe that voting for a politician with an established pro-abortion platform is following evil or partaking in their evil ways. Again, it’s not that they love DT. They just see him as the lesser of two evils.”

    So it is alright to vote for “evil” as long as it is your evil. How about voting with the law abiding person. Roe V. Wade is the established LAW.

  90. laymond says:

    Gen 2:7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

    How can anyone argue you can take the life of one who has not been given life by the breath of God.
    Aborted means prevented. not murdered.

  91. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Guys you just don’t get it. The issues that are so important to you are not important to a growing majority of the country.

    Gary, I am not sure you get it either…we DO NOT care if the issue is not important to the majority of the country. We must obey God rather than men. That’s the issue. Just because the majority of the country does not care about the slaughter of the innocents doesn’t mean that we should stop caring. Think about it. Based on your logic, white Americans shouldn’t have cared about slavery way back when slavery was almost universally accepted. Who knows what the future holds? Advances in medicine continue to make pro-abortion arguments, especially partial-birth arguments, untenable. The point is this: just because a crowd moves towards evil doesn’t mean that we should follow. I am, frankly, surprised at you, Gary. You seem to chastising pro-life Christians for caring more about what they think is right and holy than doing what is politically expedient.

    But you’re wasting your time working toward a mythical day when everyone wakes up one morning and becomes conservative on abortion…

    Thank God for people like August Landmesser and Dietrich Bonhoeffer who refused this advice.

  92. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    layman,

    are you saying state rights should over rule a woman’s right to choose

    Yes. That’s exactly what I am saying. I believe the state has a right to tell a woman that she can not murder her unborn baby.

  93. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    layman,

    So it is alright to vote for “evil” as long as it is your evil.

    Exactly. When it comes to MY vote, I am free to vote on the basis of my views on evil. The fact that you don’t think I have that right is illogical.

    How about voting with the law abiding person. Roe V. Wade is the established LAW.

    Two things:
    1. If you had bothered to read all my comments you would have seen this: “BTW Gary, I also don’t look down my nose at those Christians who intend to vote for HC.”
    2. Slavery was also established law. As was the Three-Fifths Compromise. As was Germany’s Final Solution.

  94. Dwight says:

    Laymond,
    Before Roe vs. Wade was a law, it wasn’t as abortion was illegal. No one is arguing to break laws, but rather change them, but then again when the laws conflict with God…God should win. This is the lesson we learn from Shradrach, Meshach and Abednigo…when the law says to do evil, you don’t do it and if possible you allow your influence to change it.

    Gary, “Unfortunately the conservatism that feeds on fear includes racism, misogyny and xenophobia” is so wrong.
    Liberalism also largely feeds on fear as well and largely hate. The level of vitriol that came out against Bush was unprecedented towards a president, even Obama doesn’t get the hate that Bush got and for doing something that Congress was all for, but then against.
    I know many, many conservatives, who are Christian and who are against racism, misogyny, and xenophobia. Myself included.
    Following a conservative approach doesn’t mean you have any or all of the above qualities and they are not equal. In fact there are many social liberals who are fiscal conservatives and many social conservatives that are liberal in the way they give. Stereotyping doesn’t address the issues.
    Trump happens to defy the Republican stance in many ways often leaning more towards the liberal side and yet many hate him because he is on the Republican ticket, which many Republicans would rather not have him on. The same is true in regards to Hillary with Bernie supporters, in that she doesn’t lean left far enough. You can’t always get what want and many times you don’t even get what you need.

    Gary, It seems sad that you seem to be arguing that since the country is moving in this direction that it is the right direction and we should join the direction as well. Christianity, even though having a Jewish father, was counter to the Jewish direction of following the law of Moses as a justifier (as it was to follow Jesus) and was polar opposite to the Roman culture where paganism, prostitution, etc. was the norm.

  95. Gary says:

    Kevin, it’s a free country and if overturning Roe v. Wade is your goal go at it. I’m not suggesting anyone change their values. I’m just saying that trying to end abortion in America via the political process is an exercise in futility and it becomes even more futile with each passing year. The only exception would be if conservatives began to recruit substantial numbers of young adults and people of color to their cause. And we all know that’s not going to happen with Donald Trump don’t we? That’s why I say conservatives have set back their own cause for many years to come by embracing a man who loves to insult everyone except conservative white people- except for white military veterans; they qualify for insults too even if they were tortured as prisoners of war. Kevin you seem like a smart guy. Why would you possibly want to defend Christians voting for the man who most embodies the opposite of Jesus Christ? Is his mouthing the right words on the mythical quest to overturn Roe v. Wade really worth that? It seems like it would be better to work for the prolife cause at the grassroots level with pregnancy centers changing one heart at a time. With the damage Donald Trump is doing to conservative causes, including abortion, he might as well be on Planned Parethood’s payroll.

  96. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Gary,

    Kevin, it’s a free country and if overturning Roe v. Wade is your goal go at it.

    That’s the whole point. Let’s not disparage those who do vote for a particular candidate, especially if they are Christians. I disagreed with your earlier characterization of evangelicals that intend to vote for Trump. It’s a stereotype. You characterized them as keepers of pathetic agendas and supporters of racism and misogyny. That’s a very narrow perspective, IMO.

    Why would you possibly want to defend Christians voting for the man who most embodies the opposite of Jesus Christ?

    Gary, that’s a good question. I defend them because I know many of them. They despise Trump, but they despise the human sacrifice at the alter of Baal even more. Have you seen pictures of aborted babies? It is horrendous. It will make you weep. So, the question you ask is based on an opinion. Who really does least resemble or Lord, Trump or Clinton? Regardless of the answer, it will be opinion. I don’t want DT as my President for many of the reasons that you articulate. At the same time, I don’t want HC as my President because of her stated policy on abortion. I don’t plan to vote for POTUS this election, but if I do it will be for DT. I just can’t ignore the fact that we have killed over 58,000,000 children in this country since R. vs W. That’s our holocaust. We own that.

  97. Gary says:

    Dwight, the fruit of conservative Christians trying to force their will on the rest of the country via the political process is plain for all to see now in Donald Trump and it is truly sad. The long journey that began with Jerry Falwell mobilizing conservative Christians to oppose, among other things, the transfer of the Panama Canal Zone back to Panama has now culminated in the caricature that is Donald Trump. I’m still conservative in many ways but also liberal in others. But I was a card carrying conservative most of my life. I was thrilled in 1976 to meet Ronald Reagan and drive a car of journalists in his motorcade when he visited Nashville. I was privileged around that time to receive a free ticket to a $500 a plate dinner where all the Republican luminaries of Tennessee were gathered including Howard Baker whom I always admired.

    But the conservative movement began to grate against my conscience as a Christian in the 90’s when Newt Gingrich became Speaker of the House. The attitude towards the poor especially began to have a hostile edge to it. As those years passed the kinder, gentler conservatism that the first President Bush had advocated seemed to me to be forgotten among more and more conservatives.

    I won’t bore anyone with a chronological account of my transition but the conservative movement today seems to me to be an unrecognizable and ugly descendant of what I cut my teeth on in the Ford-Reagan-George H.W. Bush years. I simply cannot reconcile today the teachings of Jesus Christ in the Sermon on the Mount with American conservatism. There are exceptions of course. I love to read the columns of David Brooks and Michael Gerson. But they and the few like them are on the far edges of conservatism. All the ugliness that I saw in conservatism from Newt Gingrich on is dwarfed by Donald Trump. It boggles my mind that any disciple of Jesus Christ would endorse and vote for this walking volcano of hatred. Christians don’t have to vote. It is always an option to abstain as I have done before in three other presidential elections.

    It simply is no longer a realistic possibility that Roe v. Wade will be overturned. I honestly think it would take an authoritarian government to stop abortion. Plus who are we to say that no woman should ever have an abortion? Reagan and George H.W. Bush always made exceptions for rape, incest and the health of the mother. Most conservatives today would not make those exceptions. It really should be a matter that is between a woman and her doctor. Just imagine how horrible it would be to force a woman who has been raped to bear and give birth to the child. Only the woman can make that decision.

    In sum I still want a society that is greatly influenced by the followers of Jesus Christ in the direction of the Sermon on the Mount. But far too much of what I see and hear from conservatives would take us in the opposite direction. Just take the hostility of conservatives to immigrants. What is Christ-like about that? What is Christ-like about slandering Mexicans as rapists? Donald Trump is as close to the Anti-Christ as we have ever seen in an American presidential candidate. And Christians have put this man in the position of being the Republican presidential candidate. It is an odious situation that all Christians should wash their hands of.

  98. Larry Cheek says:

    Gary,
    Are you trying to tell us that Jesus is in favor of the Roe v. Wade law? Would Jesus tell a mother even though she was raped by a man that it is his will for her to be able to abort this creation Of course tho many of the abortions are not to abort a child which is produced from a rape. I would believe that the majority are children that have been conceived from out of wedlock affairs, sin committed by the mother. What would cause me to believe that; where is the father? The mother does not become pregnant without him, is it not his child also? If it is and he does not want it, and does not want to go through the public demanding him to provide child support. The mother can easily be forced to end the child’s life, he then suffers nothing. Free sex is the ultimate goal. If God’s gift produces a child just kill it and all is well.

    If you answer that Jesus is in favor of the Roe v. Wade law, then most Christians will wonder if you really do believe in Jesus. If you cannot say that Jesus is in favor of Roe v. Wade law then, we will understand that you do understand a lot about Jesus but refuse to stand for what he stands or in other words to be like him.

    I will have to add that it is not been given to Christians to control the government or to force non- Christians to live as Christians, but the Roe v. Wade law should not be considered as an avenue for a Christian to take even if raped. God is the giver of the life even in the womb, he closed some and opened some, if there is a child in a Christian mothers womb through rape, God was involved. He knew what was happening and could have closed the womb. Prevented the pregnancy. Anyone who interferes with the actions of God is not a disciple of God or Christ. Remember the actions of David and Bathsheba would we dare say that God was not in control of the end result.

  99. Dwight says:

    Gary, The problem with many “liberals” is that they see one action and replace it with another action. Take building a wall…this isn’t anti-Mexican, it is anti-illegal immigration and it just so happens that the majority of the people crossing the border are not Mexican, but Columbian, Salvadorian, etc. And these people are being allowed to cross Mexico by the Mexican government with the understanding that they not stay in Mexico. Mexico actually has a much lower tolerance for illegals than the US does.
    Yes, Roe vs Wade will probably never be turned over, but it is a shame.
    Again the contradiction that one can kill a baby in the womb and be charged for murder, but if a mother does the same then it isn’t. Can you explain this?
    The baby is strangely like Schrodinger’s cat where it can have two possible states while inside the womb…a fetus or a baby, depending upon the mother’s mindset.

    You said, “I simply cannot reconcile today the teachings of Jesus Christ in the Sermon on the Mount with American conservatism.”
    and yet the people that help out others and send money to foreign countries when they are in need are largely American conservatives and have traditionally been so.
    What American conservatives hate is the money being forcibly taken from them and then filtered through the government where the money it is spent on other things or horribly misspent and wasted.

  100. Alabama John says:

    Jesus is not in favor of Roe V Wade.

    If it had been in effect when Mary told Joseph she was pregnant and he, her husband, had not had sex with her, Jesus wouldn’t of been here.

  101. Alabama John says:

    Dwight,

    You are right that folks from many countries are crossing our border and many of them are being chased and delivered by several vehicles there by their own government as criminals they are happy to get off their land.

    You can bet when the wall is built, their will be guards on both sides, our side to keep them out and the other side to keep them from returning. Wall will serve two purposes.

    What will happen to those we deliver back to our border wall by those on the other side when we force them across through the gates will be very interesting and not talked about much if any.

    Might be a military machine gun turrent set up on the other side at every gate to kill those coming back across.

    This will sure be a serious discussion in the future.

  102. laymond says:

    I believe people here are saying things about what Jesus thinks , that they know nothing about, Give proof where Jesus talked about the life of a fetus. Stop putting your words in Jesus mouth.
    You are not Jesus, you are not God, God’s ways are not the same as man’s ways.
    All you wise men please tell me was God wrong when he killed all the firstborn of Egypt , did he murder thousands of children. What value did God place on those children? Why did all the firstborn have to die?
    Whatever you think Jesus likes or don’t, we were told to obey the laws of the land we are in.
    Jesus does not have to come around to your way of thinking, you have to obey God’s will not yours.
    As Jesus said your will not mine.
    Just when we think we have it all figured out , we don’t. As my mom always told me “just do as you are told”

  103. Gary says:

    Guys it’s like you’re living in an alternate universe. Roe v. Wade is here to stay and the wall that Trump has promised will never be built. That’s just the reality. Going forward officials at every level with the views you’ve expressed will increasingly be voted out of office in part by the very immigrants and their children conservatives are so rabidly opposed to coming here. The task of Christians is to be the salt and light of Christ in our society as it is rather than as we might want it to be. I know someone who attributes most of the world’s ills to our going off the gold standard under Nixon I believe. Everything would be set aright if only the dollar was linked to gold again. It’s sad to see Christians with obviously good hearts devote so much of their lives to these fantasies.

  104. Dwight says:

    Gary, I know many, myself included that really don’t think that much about Roe vs Wade or the wall, but we are upset that thousands of mothers think so little of their responsibility of having a child that they just exterminate it. We have stricter laws on animal cruelty than we do to protect our unborn “mistakes”.
    And the wall, it may or may not be built, but I get very little sleep about it, but am saddened that the gangs and corruption and drugs that has come through Mexico with Mexico pushing them through so they don’t have to deal with it.
    Most if not all of the organizations that give were built by Christians who are run by and are donated to by these conservatives you deride so much. When our neighborhood got flooded many of my neighbors got aid from the local churches made up of these conservatives. I was one of those conservatives that pulled down wet drywall and pushed out water in the evening.

    Yes Trump is sexist, as he is largely secular, but then again so is Hillary, when it comes to securing her political power to the point of attacking her husbands attackers.
    One of the things I have not heard is a public condemnation of Howard Stern who conversed with Trump during those sexist remarks and does so 24-7 on live radio. A movie was made about him and his exploits and rise to fame and he is lifted up by Hollywood and by those that are disgusted with Trump. But of course Hollywood and the music industry puts out sexist, women demeaning movies and music videos and songs all of the time and the directors and actors and singers get lot’s of money and praise. This is hypocrisy at its best.
    Again those voting for Trump perceive Hillary as worse, just like you perceive Trump as worse than Hillary. Those that are upset that Trump spoke badly about women are more disgusted that Hillary lied to Congress and the people over Benghazi and her emails. I’m not sure which is worse, owning up to your indiscretions and smiling as Trump does or denying them and smiling as Hillary does. Whichever one we end up with be the one we must live with and it shouldn’t change us as Christians, but it might change society to the worse and still we shouldn’t change as Christians.

    Laymond, “Give proof where Jesus talked about the life of a fetus”. Really. Jesus cared about people and life. Do you think Jesus would have told a pregnant woman to abort her child? I doubt it. For one thing most mothers had husbands. This problem of abortion is caused by the lack of love between men and women and the pride of life “promiscuity” and the lie that sin doesn’t have consequences and that we can just erase the problem “baby”.
    The miracle of the first born being killed was to show God’s power over life and death, as none of the Israelites firstborn were killed and this is something the King of Egypt should have been able to stop. But notice he killed the first born, not the unborn children. The first born could have been twenty years old. Every Egyptian household was affected.

    Again we don’t face the contradiction of why is it a baby when someone punches a woman and causes her to lose the child, but it is a thing when the woman chooses to get rid of a parasitic freeloader called a fetus.
    And why is it only the woman’s choice as it has an equal amount of DNA from a man who she created it with?
    This is like a person of an airplane saying to an unlucky passenger, “well it doesn’t really matter how you got on my plane to begin with, even though it was due to my selfishness and carelessness and you don’t really mean much anyway and you are weighing the plane down and you know, I don’t really want to fool with you later and since this is my plane” and then he pushes the other out of the plane.

  105. Monty says:

    Gary,

    Noticed you didn’t want to answer the questions about if you thought Jesus would be for or against abortion. That said, those of us who don’t vote Democrat because of the abortion issue (probably among other things but the biggest obstacle) we aren’t against abortion because we believe we have a good chance at overturning Roe v Wade. It would be nice, but we realize it won’t happen anytime soon, but it doesn’t matter. You seem (to me) to be saying, “you(we) need to give up our dream and join the Democratic cause because we’ll never get it overturned.” Regardless, we are against abortion on demand based in principle(the sanctity of the baby’s life).Not because we think we have a shot at overturning RvW. Murder doesn’t cease being murder because the general populace doesn’t feel like it is any longer. The taking of innocent life is murder because God says it is. Not because the Supreme Court says it is or isn’t. Whatever you wish to call a child in the womb, it is innocent life(human life) and I promise you God is against it. We can debate which political party in what given year treats the poor with more dignity but what’s not open for discussion is which party stands for abortion and which one is opposed to it generally speaking. The left has basically made abortion and Gay marriage litmus tests for even being a Democrat. A conservative Democrat is becoming an oxymoron. Those chickens will come home to roosts one day, IMO.

  106. Gary says:

    Monty, there are therapeutic abortions and there are spontaneous abortions or miscarriages. We don’t view a miscarriage the same as we do the death of a child after birth. You are probably aware that the Law of Moses treated the death of an unborn child differently than it did murder. I do believe that abortion is sometimes necessary. Girls as young as 9 have gotten pregnant from incest and rape and I would certainly think abortion in such situations is justified. The bottom line is that only the woman knows all the facts of her situation and only she can make the decision about what to do. This is my opinion of course but for Roe v. Wade to justify voting for Trump is severely misguided. Is anything too much for Christians like you to oppose Trump? What if he were a serial murderer? I have to wonder where you would draw the line.

  107. Dwight says:

    People, for some reason this voting conversation has turned ugly. “serial murder”, really. Skating the “ad hominem” there, but only Jay can make that call.

    When Jesus was confronted by people who were bringing a woman accused of adultery, Jesus countered to the people, “You who are without sin throw the first stone.”
    Well, stones are being thrown at each other in defense of candidates who are equally deeply disgustingly flawed. Both think and act as if they are above the people. Trump demeans and smiles and Hillary lies and smiles. Both of them are deeply flawed and unworthy of being President, although Hillary might be better at being cool and playing the political games (but that is why many don’t like her).
    People will vote their own conscience, not the conscience of another.
    I don’t think people are voting against Hillary based on abortion, but rather based on her ability to get out of situations that would have doomed another common person. She is arrogant.
    People will vote against Trump based on his attitude in general. He is arrogant.

    It is strange though that while Trump is getting thumped for his sexist talk from 11 years ago, that Howard Stern is somehow immune and not being criticized. I mean his show is one long 24-7 sexist, female demeaning diatribe.
    Stern even had a Hollywood movie made about him and his rise to fame. In general movies, music and radio are sexist and demeaning to women, ironically created and produced by people who claim they are pro-female.
    We live in a culture and society that is highly polarized and increasingly un-Godly, that is without God involved in its people.

    All in all, we may well have either a male Nero in office or a female Nero in office and either one of them could start a fire of a different type. But life won’t end and at the end of the day we will still have to be Christians and although we can’t change the world, we can only change another through the gospel.

  108. laymond says:

    Gary, people have ridden this horse for so long they are afraid to get off. They accept the Jewish god as their own, they accept the Jewish savior as their own, but they won’t accept the Jewish belief of when a fetus becomes a living soul . Just as Adam became a living soul with his first breath, so does a fetus . Jewish belief.

  109. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Afraid? Of who? That’s just silly. It has nothing to do with fear; it has everything to do with aligning ourselves with righteousness rather than evil.

    Adam is a horrible example. Based on the creation narrative from which you derive your evidence, neither Adam nor Eve ever were fetuses. Since Adam was never in the womb based on the narrative, of course he bacame a living soul outside of the womb!

  110. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Additionally, you may find it instructive to research what the rabbis actually teach about abortion. You seem to insinuate that Jews and Rabbis don’t have a problem with it. That’s not true.

  111. Gary says:

    Just today three women have come forward with credible claims that they were molested by Donald Trump. If that’s not enough we have Trump’s own words on Howard Stern’s radio program that he would walk into the dressing rooms of contestants in one of his beauty pageants while they were in his own words completely undressed. He said he could do it because it was his pageant. What he didn’t say on Stern’s show but what we know now is that some of the contestants were as young as 15. We also have Trump’s own words on another Howard Stern program that he was ok with his daughter Ivanka being referred to as a piece of ass. So let me get this straight. It’s still fine for Christians to vote for Trump so long as he wants to overturn Roe v. Wade? What would Trump have to do to be unacceptable to conservative Christians? Apparently opposing Roe v. Wade covers a multitude of sins.

  112. laymond says:

    Kevin, I insinuated nothing. I only gave the belief of the Jewish, as to when a fetus became a living soul. (after reading their opinion many years ago) I don’t make unsubstantial remarks. I did not comment on their belief on abortion, but since you did, the Jewish belief on abortion is pretty much along the lines of Roe v Wade . They say it must be done if the pregnancy endangers the woman’s life ‘ and that the unborn life is not equal to a living person. They give the example given in Exodus, and in many examples of Jewish writings of the biblical times. as their reason to believe as they do. and they also recite the example of Adam. Could it be that you are the one lacking in knowledge of Jewish belief.?

  113. laymond says:

    Oh by the way, “Afraid? Of who?” Change. if you were to change on one belief who would believe you on all the others ? That you are also wrong on.

  114. Monty says:

    Laymond,

    If you are married and if you have had kids, ask your wife if she would have lost a child in delivery if she thinks she would have just lost a fetus or her baby? Only by making a baby seem like not a person can you do extreme violence to it. Hence, people don’t abort babies who live in the womb they abort “fetus’s.” Sounds all clinical and almost humane. Dogs and cats have more rights than human babies in their mother’s wombs. Sad.

    DO you really believe God could care less if women abort their babies before they draw their first breath on their own? What about partial birth abortion? You do realize that babies that are no where close to full term can breathe on their own, if given a chance?

  115. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    layman,

    Sure you did. I am certain that I am not the only one who read your comment in this manner. You insinuated that since a baby doesn’t become a soul until it takes its first breath, then we shouldn’t get wrapped around the axle about killing a fetus.

    Again, I recommend that you brush up on what the Rabbis actually teach about abortion. It’s DEFINITELY NOT as clean as you insinuate:

    The easiest way to conceptualize a fetus in halacha is to imagine it as a full-fledged human being – but not quite.2 In most circumstances, the fetus is treated like any other “person.” Generally, one may not deliberately harm a fetus. But while it would seem obvious that Judaism holds accountable one who purposefully causes a woman to miscarry, sanctions are even placed upon one who strikes a pregnant woman causing an unintentional miscarriage.3 That is not to say that all rabbinical authorities consider abortion to be murder. The fact that the Torah requires a monetary payment for causing a miscarriage is interpreted by some Rabbis to indicate that abortion is not a capital crime4 and by others as merely indicating that one is not executed for performing an abortion, even though it is a type of murder.5 There is even disagreement regarding whether the prohibition of abortion is Biblical or Rabbinic. Nevertheless, it is universally agreed that the fetus will become a full-fledged human being and there must be a very compelling reason to allow for abortion.

    As a general rule, abortion in Judaism is permitted only if there is a direct threat to the life of the mother by carrying the fetus to term or through the act of childbirth. In such a circumstance, the baby is considered tantamount to a rodef, a pursuer6 after the mother with the intent to kill her. Nevertheless, as explained in the Mishna,7 if it would be possible to save the mother by maiming the fetus, such as by amputating a limb, abortion would be forbidden. Despite the classification of the fetus as a pursuer, once the baby’s head or most of its body has been delivered, the baby’s life is considered equal to the mother’s, and we may not choose one life over another, because it is considered as though they are both pursuing each other.

    It is important to point out that the reason that the life of the fetus is subordinate to the mother is because the fetus is the cause of the mother’s life-threatening condition, whether directly (e.g. due to toxemia, placenta previa, or breach position) or indirectly (e.g. exacerbation of underlying diabetes, kidney disease, or hypertension).8 A fetus may not be aborted to save the life of any other person whose life is not directly threatened by the fetus, such as use of fetal organs for transplant.

  116. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    layman,

    Oh by the way, “Afraid? Of who?” Change. if you were to change on one belief who would believe you on all the others ? That you are also wrong on.

    Yeah. That’s exactly it.

    You have completely ignored the fact that many of us have made NUMEROUS changes to our beliefs since reading Jay’s blog. How about we discuss our disagreements as adults and not resort to questioning motives? That’s reasonable, isn’t it?

  117. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Great point, Monty. Ask my wife. We lost two. My wife will tell you that she lost two babies…not two fetuses. It took her months to recover from the loss mentally.

    It’s deeply saddening and gruesome, but those who think that aborting ‘fetuses’ is clean and sterile and without moral condemnation should peruse the aftermath at http://www.silentscream.org and similar sites for reality check.

  118. laymond says:

    I don’t know what your point was except to bolster my statement of how Jews think about abortion. You posted pretty much what I said. “There is even disagreement regarding whether the prohibition of abortion is Biblical or Rabbinic. Nevertheless, it is universally agreed that the fetus will become a full-fledged human being and there must be a very compelling reason to allow for abortion.”

    “the fetus “will become” a full-fledged human being”

    Kevin just because you choose to follow another man, and replace your own beliefs with another’s opinions does not mean you have made the right change. It could mean that you are “luke-warm” on religion.
    What is to convince me you won’t change again ?

  119. laymond says:

    “There is even disagreement regarding whether the prohibition of abortion is Biblical or Rabbinic. Nevertheless, it is universally agreed that the fetus will become a full-fledged human being and there must be a very compelling reason to allow for abortion”
    “the fetus will become a full-fledged human being” Will become.

    Kevin, just because you replace your beliefs, with another man’s opinion, does not mean you have enhanced your chances. And if I choose to follow you, how do I know you won’t change your mine again.

  120. laymond says:

    Sorry for double posting, thought the first one was refused.

  121. Dwight says:

    Gary, “Just today three women have come forward with credible claims that they were molested by Donald Trump.”
    You don’t seem much concerned that Hillary has lied to Congress, has lied about her emails, chose to relay sensitive emails on an unsecured server, etc. Has misaligned those women who were taken advantage of by her husband. Makes light of a case where she has gotten a rapist off which of course was her “job”.
    Yes, Trump is a slob, but Hillary isn’t much of a decent person either. They are both terrible in their lack of humility.
    So people are going to make the best decision they think is the right one. You can’t fault people for this.
    The same in regards to abortion. The question will never be answered as to when life begins, but it is truly sad that we don’t give the benefit of the doubt for life and move to the line of a point in months as the determination, which can then be moved. And then we will prosecute another who causes an abortion as a child, but not the mother who does so as a fetus.

  122. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    layman,

    I encourage you to reread the post again…only this time more carefully. If you do, you will notice these comments from the author:

    Generally, one may not deliberately harm a fetus.

    Nevertheless, it is universally agreed that the fetus will become a full-fledged human being and there must be a very compelling reason to allow for abortion.

    As a general rule, abortion in Judaism is permitted only if there is a direct threat to the life of the mother by carrying the fetus to term or through the act of childbirth.

    These comments run counter to your thesis that there is no moral condemnation for abortion in Jewish thought. You insinuated that Jewish thought doesn’t oppose abortion because the baby is not yet become a living soul by taking its first breath like Adam. This is fallacious thinking for two reasons:
    First, it’s not true. Jewish thought does oppose the practice of abortion.
    Second, according to the Biblical narrative, Adam was not in the womb. God created him from the dust of the ground. If the narrative is myth, them you have made a literal application from a myth, which would be false use of the myth. If the narrative is literal, then you ignored the fact that Adam was never in the womb because he was directly created from dust as the first eikon. Either way, your reasoning here is specious.

  123. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Sorry for calling you “layman.” Auto-correct on my devices.

  124. laymond says:

    When Jesus asks me why I voted for Hillary, I will say “because I believed she would do her best for the country, and in my heart I knew she loved the little children, and would do her best for them”

    When Jesus asks why did you vote for Trump ? What are you going to answer? Because I hate Hillary ?

    I believe it will be written in the book of life, and when it is opened it will be there. and we need an answer .

  125. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    laymond,

    Kevin, just because you replace your beliefs, with another man’s opinion, does not mean you have enhanced your chances. And if I choose to follow you, how do I know you won’t change your mine again.

    Let’s just stick to the topic, shall we? First you question motives about why we are somehow afraid to change our minds on a single belief [your comment: October 13, 2016 at 7:35 am]. Then, when confronted with evidence that we have changed our minds on more than a single belief, you question why we won’t change our mind again?!?

    This sort of banter is unproductive and, frankly, juvenile. If you would like to discuss the issues in a productive manner, then I am in. Otherwise, I don’t have time for this sort of foolishness. I may passionately disagree with Gary, but he is engaging in a reasonable, mature dialogue.

  126. laymond says:

    Kevin, I hope you don’t believe I think aborting a fetus is appropriate in any and all situations, I do believe a woman has the right to protect her physical, and mental health , in cases like rape and incest , or endangering the life or health of the woman, who is fully a human being. I belief if a woman is forced to give birth and she dies, that is murder as surely as if she had been shot, just more prolonged with much more suffering. If a woman chooses to carry a fetus till birth knowing she might die, she is as much a hero as the young person in the foxhole risking their life for another. No I don’t see all abortions as just , but I also don’t see that as my call. or yours.

  127. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    laymond,

    [1] When Jesus asks me why I voted for Hillary, I will say “because I believed she would do her best for the country, and in my heart I knew she loved the little children, and would do her best for them”

    [2] When Jesus asks why did you vote for Trump ? What are you going to answer? Because I hate Hillary ?

    [3] I believe it will be written in the book of life, and when it is opened it will be there. and we need an answer .

    I added numbers for ease of answering.

    [1]. Okay. I respect that. I disagree that she would do the best for little children, especially the ~1.25 million that are killed in the womb each year in America (pity we can’t hear from the dead), but I am entitled to that opinion & I won’t apologize for it.

    [2]. I do not intend to vote for Trump ATT. But if I do, I will say, “Because I could not vote for a candidate that sets the conditions for a ~1.25 million per year holocaust.” I don’t hate HT. If fact, I would love to meet her and have a civil conversation about many things: Jesus, the military, defeating ISIS, college tuition, the national debt, any books that she is currently reading, the economy, her advice on living in the public eye, etc, etc, etc.

    [3]. Please define ‘it.”

  128. laymond says:

    You may define “IT” as whatever you are doing at the time. The book of life, means the record of “your life” . It is not a book that gives life, it is a book where our lives are recorded. I am sure this is a metaphor, because God does not need a written record to know how we lived the life he gave us, or the people we harmed or helped by the decisions we made, or why we made those decisions the way we did. God knows the heart of men. We as human beings can only form our opinion about the heart of men by the way those men act. I will vote on the public actions of the people running for president. words of the mouth can’t possibly tell all the truth about a person, since the devil invented the lie. and many people use the lie for self aggrandizing .

  129. laymond says:

    In my opinion, Mr. Trump is chief of aggrandizers . or liars which ever you prefer. even tho he has done nothing to make me want to vote for him, his lying is chief among my reasons.

  130. Dwight says:

    I don’t personally like Hillary or Trump. It is like having to choose a male or female skunk and at the end of the day it stinks.
    Laymond, you argue that Trump has lied, probably, although in his arrogance he largely just doesn’t care, but then are you arguing that Hillary hasn’t, because her emails show differently. Anybody else and they would be in prison for skirting the law with her private email servers and sensitive data, delaying and destroying evidence and immunity deals. I mean if you don’t have a case, why have immunity. Many in the FBI are upset because they have evidence, but James Comey has stonewalled any move to prosecute. Trying to move back Illinois primary a month…really?
    And yet on some level she might be a better candidate than Trump, whereas Trump is hot headed, she is cold and calculating.

  131. laymond says:

    Dwight, I know Hillary has lied, just as I know you and I have lied. But not to the extent that is all we do. Trump has lived his life, and now runs his campaign on lies. I don’t know of another person in the country that has based his whole life on lies and fraud, and belittling others. when you make a deal to pay a certain amount for other’s labor, then renege on the deal and cheat them out of what they rightly deserve, that is a lie you have told, and not only have you told a lie , you have profited off that lie. When your whole fife is bases on lies, that makes you the son of Satan, or so says the bible. As Hillary said some of those people who repeat his lies, are just not redeemable.
    And Christians should be walking away from them. Or so says the bible. When we see Trump doing something on tape, and he says I didn’t do that, If we believe him, we are either blinded or we have joined Trumps band of liars . We need to refresh our memory of what we have read in Revelation about the antichrist .

  132. laymond says:

    Jhn 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

  133. Dwight says:

    Laymond, Again you are making the distinction about Trump that for some reason argues that Hillary doesn’t lie all of the time. I assume you have a list of lies that Trump has told next to a list of lies Hillary has told so that you can compare the two and then there are the magnitude of the lies as well. If Trump has told 20 lies and Hillary 15, should we be endorsing either one of them?
    You seem to have an overly biased hatred of Trump that borders on…well hate.
    I mean “As Hillary said some of those people who repeat his lies, are just not redeemable.” as to mean that if one repeats a Hillary lie you are redeemable? Hmmmm.
    We also have plenty of Hillary statements on tape and most recently emails where she says that she didn’t do something, but did and yet many people are going to vote for her, so I guess that means they have “joined Hillary’s band of liars.”
    Perhaps she is the anti-Christ?
    Sixteen foreign governments donated up to $170 million after their representatives had meetings with Secretary Clinton, the AP reported. Must be pure altruism? I doubt it.
    I’m sure Trump has done something similar, except he hasn’t been in the government with government influence.

    It appears you have let the political landscape warp your sense of who will destroy the world.
    Even though I think Hillary is not a good person and will promote more of what we have seen in the last 8 years towards socialism, I don’t think of her as the anti-Christ.

  134. laymond says:

    #1 You seem to have an overly biased hatred of Trump that borders on…well hate.
    answer – I do not hate the sinner, I hate the sin. and what the sin would do, and has done to my country.

    #2 I mean “As Hillary said some of those people who repeat his lies, are just not redeemable.” as to mean that if one repeats a Hillary lie you are redeemable? Hmmmm.
    answer- there is no redemption for those who do not repent. have you heard those who support the provable lies trump has told repent.? provable by Trumps own words.

    #3 We also have plenty of Hillary statements on tape and most recently emails where she says that she didn’t do something, but did and yet many people are going to vote for her, so I guess that means they have “joined Hillary’s band of liars.”
    answer- I don’t know about the tapes you refer to, but the Russian hacked emails, don’t convince me.

    #4 Perhaps she is the anti-Christ?
    I believe he was referred to as male.

    #5 Sixteen foreign governments donated up to $170 million after their representatives had meetings with Secretary Clinton, the AP reported. Must be pure altruism? I doubt it.
    answer, what did these governments donate to, and for what purpose.?

    #6 I’m sure Trump has done something similar, except he hasn’t been in the government with government influence.
    answer – so if you harm people as an individual not connected to the government it is not a sin.

    #7 It appears you have let the political landscape warp your sense of who will destroy the world.
    answer- you have a right to your opinion.
    #8 Even though I think Hillary is not a good person and will promote more of what we have seen in the last 8 years towards socialism, I don’t think of her as the anti-Christ.
    answer – Which is preferable to you socialism , or communism ? Trump seems to prefer communism his hero is Putin, he said he preferd him over our president.

  135. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    laymond,

    You may define “IT” as whatever you are doing at the time.

    Okay. Then, I am comfortable with my previous answers to [1] and [2].

  136. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    laymond,

    As Hillary said some of those people who repeat his lies, are just not redeemable.

    That’s a very surprising response coming from a Christian. No one is irredeemable. Stephen prayed for those who were about to murder him; they were redeemable. Ironic that murderers are NOT beyond redemption but “Trump liars” are beyond redemption.

    #1 You seem to have an overly biased hatred of Trump that borders on…well hate.
    answer – I do not hate the sinner, I hate the sin. and what the sin would do, and has done to my country.

    I am not sure how you square this answer with your comment above about those who you perceive to be Trump liars.

  137. Gary says:

    Those Christians who continue to justify voting for an admitted sexual predator only illustrate the bankruptcy of so much of American conservative Christianity today. It is instructive to read about the enthusiasm of so many German Mennonites for Adolf Hitler. He was completely opposed to the godless Communists so they reasoned that he had to be the choice for real Christians to support. And it is true that whatever else we might say about Hitler he always opposed Communism. So if he was right about that one all-important issue he had to be the Christian alternative or at least to be the one most likely to advance the cause of Christ in Germany. Of course nothing could have been further from the truth. Now in 2016 in the land of the free and the home of the brave we have the unprecedented spectacle of loud shouts of “lock her up” at Trump rallies as if we were just another banana republic. How many of those thugs go to church regularly? Hopefully this brand of Christianity will fade away as the years go by. Young adults and people of color represent the American future and the great majority of them want nothing to do with this pied piper.

  138. laymond says:

    Kevin, if you are lost, you have to want to be found , in order to be found. Jhn 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.
    If you are to be redeemed, you have to want to be redeemed. If you are lost to God, you have to want to be saved. The Trump followers don’t want to change, so they won’t.
    Trump in my opinion shows the most evil personality seen in many years. any one who disagrees with, or says anything to tarnish his “glory” is attacked immediately, ask the established republican party. ask John McCain , a war hero, ask Mr. Paul Ryan the speaker of the house. Trump knows he is going down, and he is going to take the whole republican party with him. Trump has no respect for anything except money, that is his god and he talks about money most of the time. How much he has how he made it, how important it is to him. his base would follow him to hell just like one third of the angels followed Satan, do you think those angels are redeemable. even God gave up on them.

  139. laymond says:

    Dwight, and Kevin, please answer this question honestly . Would you invite Donald Trump to attend your family reunion, with young women and girls of your family present, after hearing all these “untrue” accusations . and let the parents of these young women know that you had invited him.

  140. Larry Cheek says:

    Let’s face it brothers, the news media becomes the only truthful body in the world, and they are not accountable to prove either side of these accusations . Anyone, should be able to analyze the information and determine what portions are reality. If DT had done the things which he is being accused of; these women with cases which could have been proven could have found multiple law firms to represent them, and collected hefty rewards.

  141. Larry Cheek says:

    If I remember anything about our system of justice, I believe that a man is considered as innocent until proven guilty. Now you guys are operating in reverse. He is guilty upon being accused. I don’t believe that you would want to be treated in that manner. You would want an evaluation of the evidence and a fair trial before the public would accept that you have committed a crime. According to the direction you are taking Bill should have been immediately impeached as President just like he was from the bar of lawyers. Why did that not happen. Did you voice your opinion that the news media and the women were lying? If you did not then you must have believed the media and the accusations and should have pressed for justice/impeachment. Since you did not do that to the President then you have no right to seek what you are attempting to apply to a Presidential candidate now. You become a bigger problem to justice than the the one who is accused. Looks like a lynch mob to me.

  142. Alabama John says:

    These politicians that are downing Trump should consider if he is elected how that will affect their future.
    Gangs of blacks killing one another in Chicago over the competition for drugs that he is promising to eradicate sure don’t want him elected.
    Anyone from outside the existing political bunch looks better than another from the same old crowd that has gotten us in this mess worldwide.
    Hitler I have mentioned before and we, like Germany back in those days, will need a leader that has to hurt a lot of folks to straighten out the mess we are in.
    Sticking with the same old bunch will never do it, They are embedded to deep in buddy, buddy, payoffs and kickbacks.
    Today, anreal good christian person doesn’t have a chance at getting elected and if he they did, they would not know how to stop this crookedness. It will take a crook to stop the crookedness as they know the game well.

  143. Alabama John says:

    Another thought.

    If what they are saying about Trump going after women is true, then either way the election goes, we will have a sexual predator in the white louse. President or 1st gentleman.

    And we make fun of Putin and Russia!!!

  144. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Gary,

    Those Christians who continue to justify voting for an admitted sexual predator only illustrate the bankruptcy of so much of American conservative Christianity today.

    Gary, it cuts both ways. Many Christians may answer your statement rhetorically: “Those Christians who continue to justify voting for infanticide only illustrate the bankruptcy of so much of American conservative Christianity today.”

    The mistake here is that you are judging Christians based on who they vote for. Why do YOU get to determine how a Christian should vote? What makes YOU qualified to determine that alleged sexual assault is far more important than the confirmed annual deaths of about 1.25 million children in the womb? Why do YOU get to decide who is bankrupt and who is not? Why do YOU get to take YOUR issue of choice so personally, and others do NOT get to take their issue of choice so personally? It’s very interesting.

  145. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    not sure why that last paragraph is in bold.

  146. Gary says:

    Larry, we have Trump’s own words that he is entitled to kiss and grope women whenever he wants because of who he is. If that’s not evidence of a proclivity towards criminal behavior what is? By the way Bill Clinton was impeached.

  147. Profile photo of Jay Guin Jay Guin says:

    Kevin,

    I fixed the bold. Let me know if it’s not right now.

  148. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Dwight, and Kevin, please answer this question honestly . Would you invite Donald Trump to attend your family reunion, with young women and girls of your family present, after hearing all these “untrue” accusations . and let the parents of these young women know that you had invited him.

    Absolutely! I would also host HC. Without a doubt.

    Why? Because it is an opportunity to share/reinforce the Gospel, to potentially appeal to their Christian beliefs, and to potentially shape their thinking on a host of issues. Absolutely. I would invite and cordially receive either one of them. I would treat both with the utmost dignity, grace, and respect.

    “Would I invite them” is a very different question than “Do I want them there”. I don’t personally like either Trump or Clinton, so I would rather not have them crash my party. But as a Christian, I would JUMP at the chance to host them.

    Another caveat:
    Would I allow DT to babysit my kids unsupervised? Absolutely not.
    Would I allow HC to babysit my kids unsupervised? Absolutely not.
    Would I allow you, laymond, to babysit my kids unsupervised? Absolutely not.

    Why? Because I don’t know any of you personally. That kind of trust is developed over time and based on more intimate relationships.

  149. Gary says:

    Ok Kevin, it’s reasonable in your view for Christians to vote for an admitted sexual predator to lead our country so long as he wants to overturn Roe v. Wade. You’re certainly entitled to your opinion. But I really would like to know where you would draw the line. How about an admitted rapist or an admitted murderer? After all someone could admit to loving to murder people and still walk around free so long as he didn’t admit to a particular murder. You may think I’m being absurd but is it not absurd to vote for an admitted sexual predator and to do so on the basis of one’s Christian faith? Anyone who can justify voting as a Christian for Trump can justify anything.

  150. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    laymond,

    Kevin, if you are lost, you have to want to be found , in order to be found. Jhn 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.
    If you are to be redeemed, you have to want to be redeemed. If you are lost to God, you have to want to be saved. The Trump followers don’t want to change, so they won’t.

    This is just so very wrong. I am astounded at the degree to which “politics” can negatively influence Christians…on both sides. May we all remember that the Christians hope will not be realized through political means and that our political affiliation is subordinate to our Kingdom affiliation.

    No convinced? Cogitate just a bit on both the Centurion near Capernaum and especially Cornelius. The latter became a Christian, an heir, a full-fledged member of the Kingdom. Yet he was also a member of the hated Roman Army. A leader within a military organization that systematically slaughtered Jews by the thousands, including our Lord.

    We don’t know what happened to either Centurion after their encounters with Christ and Peter. There is no indication that they abandoned their post and deserted the Roman Military. Lots of good lessons here to prayerfully dwell upon.

  151. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Gary,

    Ok Kevin, it’s reasonable in your view for Christians to vote for an admitted sexual predator to lead our country so long as he wants to overturn Roe v. Wade. You’re certainly entitled to your opinion. But I really would like to know where you would draw the line. How about an admitted rapist or an admitted murderer? After all someone could admit to loving to murder people and still walk around free so long as he didn’t admit to a particular murder. You may think I’m being absurd but is it not absurd to vote for an admitted sexual predator and to do so on the basis of one’s Christian faith? Anyone who can justify voting as a Christian for Trump can justify anything.

    IMO, we seem to be listening to you, but you don’t seem to be reciprocating.

    I think you are conflating Christianity with the American political process. We most often see this on the right, but it exists on the left as well. The Kingdom does not equal America. That’s worth repeating, America and the Kingdom are not the same. We are not akin to ancient Israel. We are not God’s chosen people in the modern world.

    You are defining Christians’ choices in terms of the American political process. Here is a sampling of your comments over the past several days:

    …so long as he wants to overturn Roe v. Wade.

    Those Christians who continue to justify voting for an admitted sexual predator only illustrate the bankruptcy of so much of American conservative Christianity today.

    Going forward officials at every level with the views you’ve expressed will increasingly be voted out of office

    The issues that are so important to you are not important to a growing majority of the country.

    If three Republican Presidents couldn’t accomplish a national reversal on abortion it’s sure not going to happen now. Every year more conservative/Republican voters die than are coming on board.

    Anti-infanticide Christians are not voting for pro-life candidates based on a political strategy. They are voting for pro-life candidates because they believe it is the RIGHT thing to do. You don’t have to like it, but as a Christian, you are expected to accept it!

    Your voting decisions seem to be calculated to achieve your party political goals. Okay; good for you. But to disparage Christians who regard the sanctity of innocent human life very dear and significantly high on their priority list for voting is just so very wrong.

    I am not sure that I believe you when you say:

    You’re certainly entitled to your opinion.

    You say that, and yet you continue to disparage those Christians who hold that opinion.

    But I really would like to know where you would draw the line. How about an admitted rapist or an admitted murderer?

    I already view one of the candidates as being complicit in the murder of innocent children. Honestly. HC has set the conditions for continued murder of the unborn. As POTUS, she will reinforce those policies that more easily enable the death of ~1.25 million children per year in the US. I hold her and other policy makers partially accountable.

    You stated:

    Anyone who can justify voting as a Christian for Trump can justify anything.

    One may reply: “Anyone who can justify voting as a Christian for Clinton can justify anything.”

    Both are 100% opinions. I urge you to cease disparaging fellow brothers and sisters in Christ based on your personal opinion with regard to this election. It’s wrong. You seem to intellectually understand that Christians are entitled to their opinion. Time to start acting like it.

  152. Gary says:

    Kevin, so anyone who does not want to have Roe v. Wade overturned is complicit in the murder of unborn children? I want to make sure I’m understanding you correctly.

  153. Gary says:

    Or anyone who seeks public office while supporting Roe v. Wade?

  154. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Gary,

    No. In my opinion, any elected leader who sets the conditions for the continued legalized killing of innocent human babies through either legislative support or judicial appointees is complicit / partially responsible / partially morally culpable.

  155. Gary says:

    Kevin, thanks for the clarification. But by that reasoning shouldn’t Christians cease to vote altogether? If we vote for a candidate who supports policies that hurt the poor, or promote racism, or encourage any number of other forms of evil aren’t we then complicit in those anti-Christian policies?

    The words of Trump in his 2005 conversation with Billy Bush promote a culture of rape. I don’t think you would disagree with that. How can, under your view, Christians then vote for either Trump or Clinton?

  156. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    Gary,

    Christians are not required to either vote or to not vote. For me, I choose to base my vote on the totality of harm, and I believe abortion has caused more harm in the United States since 1973 — approximately 59,000,000 violent deaths of babies — than other social travesties. That’s an average of 1,340,909 killings per year.

    Just to put that number in perspective, Nazi Germany slaughtered 11,000,000 innocent people from 1933-1945 during the holocaust. That’s an average of 846,153 per year.

    Future generations may look back on the American holocaust in the same way that we look back on Germany’s holocaust. “How – could – this – happen?” “How – could – they – simply – go – along – with – the killing – of – 60,000,000 – babies?” Food for thought.

  157. dwight says:

    Kevin, I believe you have the right of this. It seems as though who you vote for makes you complicate in their crime, which means that all those who voted for Bill Clinton was complicate in his crime against women. The problem here is that we are being spoon fed information by the press and through other sources and we will believe the feeding depending upon who we trust more.
    Gary you said, “Ok Kevin, it’s reasonable in your view for Christians to vote for an admitted sexual predator to lead our country so long as he wants to overturn Roe v. Wade.”
    He admitted to doing what I have heard many women say and I am not sure I would call them a “super predator”. A super predator would be more like one who commits an actual crime against women…maybe like Bill.

  158. Monty says:

    The Obama’s have invited many black rappers to come and perform at the Whitehouse. She(Michelle) is on record as saying that Beyoncé was the best role model for her girls. Seriously?Listened to any rapper lyrics lately? watched any Beyoncé videos lately. What a joke! Such hypocrisy. She doesn’t know any men they associate with who would talk down to women.

  159. dwight says:

    Yes, Monty the standards are twisted according the Hollywood. Female rappers are pro-women and preach respect and yet show themselves as objects of desire and feed an industry that grossly does this. An these people are lauded for their “work”.

  160. laymond says:

    Kevin, is using a condom murder.? Is using the morning after pill murder?

  161. Larry Cheek says:

    Laymond,
    You seem to present that life does not begin until birth. The Bible refutes that theory.

  162. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    laymond,

    Kevin, is using a condom murder.? Is using the morning after pill murder?

    No, to the former.

    Depends, on the latter:
    -No, if a child had not been conceived.
    -Yes, if a child had been conceived and the drug killed said child.

  163. laymond says:

    Dwight said, ” A super predator would be more like one who commits an actual crime against women…maybe like Bill.”
    Or someone that would take part in raping a 13 yr. old girl. Like Trump is accused of , and being sued for.

    Larry said, “You seem to present that life does not begin until birth. The Bible refutes that theory.”
    Where is this denial, Larry.?

    So Kevin if you prevent a potential life it is not murder, I believe that is what I said.

  164. Profile photo of Kevin Kevin says:

    laymond,

    So Kevin if you prevent a potential life it is not murder, I believe that is what I said.

    That’s not quite accurate. On October 11, 2016 at 10:22 am, you wrote:

    Gen 2:7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

    How can anyone argue you can take the life of one who has not been given life by the breath of God.
    Aborted means prevented. not murdered.

    According to your statement, there is no moral condemnation for killing an unborn human baby because the baby is soul-less…even up to a few seconds before live birth. Just a piece of insignificant tissue, I suppose. According to the precepts of your theory, we could even terminate the life of the newborn baby AFTER live birth as long as we are careful to avoid clearing the air passage and allowing the infant to draw in its first breath of air.

  165. I recognize that determining the spiritual identity of the human zygote is a difficult question. However, haggling over this misses the enormous rate of murders of unborn humans who have been around long enough to have changed their mothers’ hormones sufficiently to show up in a pregnancy test. The developing blastocyst is considered an embryo at about 4 weeks, which is about when you get a clear plus-sign on the little white stick. Perhaps we could simply focus on saving these unborn humans first, and reserve this particular conception/inception debate for that wonderful day when we have saved the lives of the vast majority of the current, obvious victims.

  166. Alabama John says:

    This debate wouldn’t be taking place if we didn’t have abortions due to unwanted babies caused by unwanted pregnancies. What have we turned into and come to today?
    Rather than planning ways to kill them properly or not, why not spend all that time instead of arguing after the fact, thinking and putting all the various birth control methods and programs in action.
    In my mind, morals should be the first, not the last to be emphasized and taught.
    Back in many of our days, someone getting pregnant and not wanting the baby was a scandal and very rarely heard of. Abortions were a shame and disgrace as they were illegal and morally wrong.
    Even in the military, rubbers were handed out by the handful at every liberty here in the USA and all foreign places. Address of an abortion clinic was not and was non existent.

  167. Dwight says:

    Laymond, “A super predator would be more like one who commits an actual crime against women…maybe like Bill.” Or someone that would take part in raping a 13 yr. old girl. Like Trump is accused of, and being sued for.”

    I have not heard this case of a 13 yr.old being sued for rape. I have heard gropes and remarks.
    If Trump did commit a rape, then he will be on equal footing with Bill in that department.
    This would not be good for either party.

    The argument on abortion is based on not when does life begin, but rather is this life impeding the life of the mother. We have laws against late term abortions, but many abortionist would love to have late term abortions as well, so it is just a matter of moving the line for abortion. The strange argument is that when the baby comes out it is somehow different than when it was in and yet there are many early term babies being born and they are still babies, unless they are not. Then the argument is can they sustain life outside the womb? But even a toddler cannot sustain life outside of the womb. It can breath air, but it is totally dependent upon the mother (parents), which is strangely the same argument when called a fetus.

    “Aborted means prevented. not murdered.”, but only by those who define it this way. But then again if a man hits a woman and she loses the child, he will be charged with murder, even though the baby was technically aborted, which is what an abortion doctor would do. Again shifting lines.

  168. Larry Cheek says:

    Laymond,
    Can you read these verses and explain that a child within the womb was not created and given life by God while within the womb? Unless you can show us scriptures which identify that the tissue within the womb is just a growth of tissue and bones while in the womb which does not live while in the mothers womb. I will have to believe what these scriptures portray.
    There many animals on earth which we readily see giving what is called live birth. Meaning that life began in the womb and were already alive prior to birth.
    With your theory all humans are born as stillborn then only when they begin to breath do they become a life. If that were true there would not be a heart beat which is controlled by the body being formed within the womb and the mass would never be capable of a life if the mother died prior to giving birth. Because it would die as the mother died. The mass of a body removed from the womb prior to birth would necessarily and miraculously be given life without the normal birth process.
    There are many animals, birds and fish which do not give live birth, normally an egg is laid and the same process which takes place within a womb is accomplished within the egg. I guess that all of these in comparison would only become a life after the object inside was able to break the egg shell to escape. I know of no one who would not believe that there was life within the egg prior to a breathing action. Your concept defies nature. I could easily comment after each of these portions of scripture to be sure you understand the message, but I believe that if you apply principles from above you will be able to understand with the help the Spirit from God.

    Job 3:11-16 ESV “Why did I not die at birth, come out from the womb and expire? (12) Why did the knees receive me? Or why the breasts, that I should nurse? (13) For then I would have lain down and been quiet; I would have slept; then I would have been at rest, (14) with kings and counselors of the earth who rebuilt ruins for themselves, (15) or with princes who had gold, who filled their houses with silver. (16) Or why was I not as a hidden stillborn child, as infants who never see the light?

    Psa 71:5-6 ESV For you, O Lord, are my hope, my trust, O LORD, from my youth. (6) Upon you I have leaned from before my birth; you are he who took me from my mother’s womb. My praise is continually of you.

    Psa 139:13-16 ESV For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. (14) I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. (15) My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. (16) Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.

    Ecc 11:5 ESV As you do not know the way the spirit comes to the bones in the womb of a woman with child, so you do not know the work of God who makes everything.

    Isa 44:2 ESV Thus says the LORD who made you, who formed you from the womb and will help you: Fear not, O Jacob my servant, Jeshurun whom I have chosen.

    Isa 44:24 ESV Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer, who formed you from the womb: “I am the LORD, who made all things, who alone stretched out the heavens, who spread out the earth by myself,

    Isa 46:3-4 ESV “Listen to me, O house of Jacob, all the remnant of the house of Israel, who have been borne by me from before your birth, carried from the womb; (4) even to your old age I am he, and to gray hairs I will carry you. I have made, and I will bear; I will carry and will save.

    Jer 1:4-6 ESV Now the word of the LORD came to me, saying, (5) “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” (6) Then I said, “Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, I do not know how to speak, for I am only a youth.”

    Jer 20:16-18 ESV Let that man be like the cities that the LORD overthrew without pity; let him hear a cry in the morning and an alarm at noon, (17) because he did not kill me in the womb; so my mother would have been my grave, and her womb forever great. (18) Why did I come out from the womb to see toil and sorrow, and spend my days in shame?

    Luk 1:41-44 ESV And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, (42) and she exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! (43) And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? (44) For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy.

  169. Gary says:

    I highly recommend a letter/essay in today’s (October 26) Washington Post entitled “Vote for Christian Values, Not for Trump.” It is written by Liberty University students who are not voting for either Trump or Clinton. Their reasoning is well worth consideration by conservatives.

  170. Alabama John says:

    We are voting for a President, not a preacher. Neither of the two would meet the coC standards for preacher.
    Can we just imagine all the talk among those that knew of the terrible things done to any and all Christians that would justly cause them to actively oppose and fear Paul when he became an apostle?
    There could be a big book written just about that.
    Maybe there was and the Catholics have it.

  171. laymond says:

    You are right AJ , name any church no matter the denomination that would name a man equivalent to Paul, and his record. as teacher, preacher, pasture, elder, deacon. most members would not attend a church where he was present. But you know what, God will. We should judge people on the qualifications of the job being applied for. If you truly believe Mr. Trump is the most qualified for the job of President, and commander in chief. well you know what to do.

  172. Dwight says:

    Yes, when you are looking at people so deeply and equally flawed as Hillary and Trump, although Hillary’s pro-abortion stance is horrible, you are then called on to choose who will do the best for the country with the least harm. It is a judgment call and maybe not a clear one at that. It has long been known that people mostly vote with their gut.

  173. Alabama John says:

    Laymond, its easy to bote right bi9blically for all us coC members. 1Timothy 2:12 says it all.
    WE do still believe Paul don’t we?

  174. Alabama John says:

    Computer error, should be VOTE right and biblically.

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