Thursday, December 6, 2012

On Gun Control and Bob Costas

Since losing my voracious appetite for watching football, I rarely tune into any games.  Perhaps I will watch a few moments here and there, catching a play or two before heading off to other endeavors or crashing out at night, but those moments are pretty rare.  Happenstance, I had decided to catch one of those moments on Sunday night during the Cowboys/Eagles' game.  Happenstance, it was halftime.   And, happenstance, I caught Bob Costas' commentary on the Jovan Belcher murder/suicide in Kansas City.


Costas caught all sorts of flack for these comments.  Apparently, he believes he was misunderstood and violated his own reporting rules by tackling a complex issue in too small a time frame.  I think he's trying to cover his tail end, but I'll let you decide.


As a pastor and gun owner, I pause in wonder sometimes at such commentary.  Costas paints some broad generalizations regarding a "gun culture" and some of the things happening in society.  I think Costas needs to get out more and realize there is more than one gun culture in this nation.  There is a legal gun culture and an illegal one.

Costas tells the story that Tony Dungee once asked his team, "How many of you own a gun?"  65 out of 80 raised their hands.  Costas makes two assumptions.  He says "Even if they were all obtained legally..." casting doubt that all the gun owners legally possessed their firearms, and then suggests young males subject to impulse shouldn't own guns because they will make violent choices. 

Costas makes an incredible leap of logic.  First, just think about the numbers of professional athletes.  If 85% of said athletes own firearms, the actual number of those committing crimes with said firearms is minuscule--on the magnitude of between 1 and 5 percent.  That's very, very small in proportion to the number of athletes who own guns.  Secondly, his conclusion that young males who are subject to impulses combined with firearms will lead to tragedy--perhaps this is the case in the illegal gun culture, but in the legal culture, I believe it is less likely to happen.  Sure, there are stories of firearms being discharged by kids who fatally kill other kids.  There are also stories of parents who leave their firearms within reach of their children, and bad things happen.  There's no dismissing such stories.  Yet, it is still a fact that more kids drown in  personal swimming pools than get killed by guns.  No one is going after swimming pools. 

And, on a personal note, kids in the legal gun culture tend to be trained and monitored by their parents.  I received my first gun when I was seven years old.  It was a bb gun.  I received it on Christmas with the timely advice, "If I see you point this at a person or an animal or anything you shouldn't point it at, I will break it over your backside."  My dad meant what he said, and I followed his advice.  Furthermore, my dad taught me the destructive power of guns at an early age.  At about the same age, dad took me out one morning with my great grandfather's double barrel shot gun.  I'm not talking about the newer models which are light weight and pretty easy to maneuver.  I'm talking about the old time guns which are heavy and deliver a punch when you squeeze the trigger.  Dad made me shoot the gun.  It nearly knocked me down.  I learned a lesson about the power of those guns, and to this day, I have a very healthy respect for them.  I've hunted since I was 12 or so, and, through my dad, I purchased my first gun when I was 14.  I know dozens of people my age whose experience is the same, and there is little evidence that we cannot handle the responsibility of firearms at a young age.  The same cannot be said for the illegal gun culture, I believe.  A different set of rules apply there, and most of our laws are geared toward that gun culture.

Costas goes after those rules saying that guns are easily purchased and readily available.  For who?  Not when you purchase them legally.  A few months ago, I legally purchased a new hunting rifle.  Sure, I was able to walk away with it the same afternoon I purchased it, but I had to go through a lengthy process to buy the gun.  I had to fill out an application.  I had to go through a criminal background check.  I had to fill out all sorts of other information and be subject to all sorts of safety lectures and pamphlets before I could walk out with my purchase.  If at any point a red flag would have been raised, I would have been denied.  For those purchasing guns legally, this is standard.  In the illegal gun culture, it is a different story.

But, that's the key, isn't it.  It's the illegal gun culture.  There are laws pertaining to it.  Laws that aren't always being followed or enforced and sometimes purposely broken (see Operation Fast and Furious).  And yet, when some sort of tragic shooting occurs, there is a clamor for more and better gun laws?  Seriously?  Try enforcing the ones we have now, and give our law enforcement the funding and manpower to do the job!

Some might just be wondering how I square all this gun stuff with my Christian faith.  Doesn't violence beget violence?  Didn't Jesus say "Turn the other cheek?"  Didn't he also say, "Those who live by the sword (gun) will die by the sword (gun)."? 

Yes.  Jesus said those things, and as I said to a Facebook friend who commented on my status once, I believe guns are not the answer. 

But there are folks who do not believe this.  There are folks who are willing to use guns to get what they want.  There are those who live by the gun.  And if law enforcement is not able to control such folks?  If such folks are willing to impose violence upon those who try to be non-violent, what happens?  The violent folks always win.  They always impose their rule over others.  History has shown us that time and again.

I do not live by the gun.  I try to live by the Word.  I try to live in peace.  It's what I believe is best for society and for the world.  And in a perfect world, all would do that.  In a perfect world no one would strike out in violence.  In a perfect world, we might not even have guns.  In a perfect world we wouldn't have to worry about anyone striking us.  In a perfect world, we wouldn't even have to worry about what Jesus said, "If someone strikes you on the cheek, turn to him the other." 

But we don't live in a perfect world.  We don't live in a world where people will strike you in the cheek with their hands.  Sometimes, they choose to strike with firearms, and it's awfully hard to turn the other cheek if you are lying in a pool of your own blood dying.  In fact, you can't.  You're dead, and those who once counted on you to provide for them, to care for them, to nurture them are left in a heap of trouble.

Therefore, I choose to protect myself as best as possible.  I choose to be a gun owner.  I choose to use this tool with great respect and great care, and I will teach my children to do the same.  I want them to be a part of the legal gun culture--a culture which I believe is compatible with my Christian faith. 

36 comments:

Rob Roop said...

Classic opportunity to ask what would Jesus do.

Imagine, Jesus at home with Mary and Joseph. Someone breaks into their house threatening them with a gun. Of course, Joseph owns a gun. In fact, being a skilled woodworker it has a beautifully crafted stock and his metalworking friend has beautifully engraved the heirloom as well.

Does Jesus jump up and grab the gun? Does he sit quietly by while Joseph does? No, he instructs Mary to give the criminal what the asked for and forgives them on their way out.

If you own a gun for "protection" you have a fantasy that one day you will use it to kill someone. You can hide behind the claim that you are a responsible gun owner but that contradicts your protection fetish and your Christian faith.

I own a gun for hunting. I teach my kids to be responsible around guns but I don't kid myself by believing that taking a life is in any way aligned with my desire to live a Christ-like life.

Kevin Haug said...

Hi Rob,

I love hypotheticals, so let's push this just a little more. Let's say said criminal doesn't break in just to take something, but said criminal is intent upon killing Joseph and Jesus while saving Mary for rape and then murder. WWJD?

Do I have a fantasy that one day I will kill someone? That's a good question. I believe a fantasy is something that cannot happen a la going on a quest to destroy a magic ring of evil, so by that definition, I have no fantasy of killing someone. Do I face the possibility I may have to defend my family or my life some day? Yes. I do. The odds are slim that such a thing might happen statistically, but there is the eventuality that it might happen. I hope to be prepared to defend my family and even lay down my life for them. If by doing so I claim the life of another, then I will bear that responsibility and ask for forgiveness.

Rob said...

So, in your personal faith you believe that Jesus was capable of hurting another human?

I note that he did not resist his unjust arrest in the garden and chastised Peter for using violence to protect him when Peter cut off the ear off the priest's servant.

Kathy said...

Interesting. Until our world is perfect -- until Jesus comes and establishes a Millennial Kingdom, if in fact that is what the Scripture means -- we will have this problem.

Just yesterday, my daughter was walking her son down a country road, to the school bus, and was threatened by a tattoo-covered biker. She was shaken up and called me. I told her to call the police.

When her husband came home, she told him what happened. He went to their safe, pulled out the gun, took her into the back yard and taught her how to use it. He now wants her to wear a holster to the bus stop.

In my case, as I said on Facebook, I lived through the 80s in Miami -- I was assaulted twice and we had a home-invasion. Somehow, I managed to worm my way out of these bad situations. (Maybe it was the guardian angels?? Who knows.)

My family lives in the Chicago area and I am aware daily of the horror there. I don't think things are getting any better.

I don't know the answer... but I do not think the degrading of our culture has helped. What if Jovan Belcher and his girlfriend had live by the counsels of St Paul for married people, instead of the culture of feminism and sexual freedom?

Where does the ELCA stand on these issues? Does not the church condone sex outside of marriage and support feminism (women's liberation)?

Kathy said...

Rob and Kevin --

Hope you don't mind if I comment....

A beautiful thing about our Faith is that we have very clear guidelines in these matters.

Killing a person in self-defense is justified. It is not a sin. Kevin, you would not have to ask for forgiveness.

Jesus chose to die for our sins, for the reasons we all know.

We ordinary people can defend ourselves. The early martyrs ran from one town to another trying to escape death.

If our culture becomes so horrible that we all need guns for self-defense, then so be it.

And Kevin, I do believe Jesus would have shot a murderer trying to kill his family. It would completely depend on the second-by-second circumstances, but we have the right of self-defense.

Kevin Haug said...

Thank you again for commenting, Rob.

Whether or not Jesus was/is capable of hurting someone physically is an intriguing question. I'm not sure I know the answer. Hence, my pushing the envelope further in the hypothetical situation you described. I don't think I defined what Jesus would do, I left that for you or someone else to decide.

I stated what I would do, and I stand by that.

I can say with scriptural evidence that Jesus wasn't above hurting someone's feelings (the Pharisees on numerous occasions by taking to task their theology and practice) or their pocketbooks (see the money changers in the temple)--and why would He need a whip to carry out that task? Things that make you go, hmmm.

As for Peter in the garden and resisting arrest, you are correct in your assessment. I won't belabor the point. Yet this is also where Jesus made the comment, "those who live by the sword will die by the sword." (Matthew 26) Interestingly enough, in John, there is a different twist. Jesus chastises Peter because 1. He had already asked those coming to arrest Him to allow His followers to go. and 2. Because it was ordained for Jesus to drink the cup He was supposed to drink, i.e. the crucifixion.

I have already declared it is not my intention to live by the sword; however, I do not believe you have addressed the reality that there are those who have chosen this path. Is it justifiable for a Christian to allow someone to kill, rape, maim, or commit some other type of injustice upon another? Is it justifiable for a Christian to allow such a thing when he/she has the means to prevent it?

Note, I am not saying that said action is according to the will of God. I believe God abhors such bloodshed on the part of those who would take innocent life and by those who take life in protection of life. Yet, to stand by and allow atrocity is not something I in good conscience can do.

Kathy,

I agree with much of what you say, and please know you are always welcome to comment. I am not quite as sure as you in regards to what Jesus would do in said hypothetical situation. I just simply don't know.

Kathy said...

I love conversation like this because it touches on so many issues -- maybe all of them -- and gets to "the heart of the matter."

Technically, this is called Moral Theology.

I think I learned all I need to know about M.T. during my 2nd pregnancy. I had what Duchess Kate has (had), the doc didn't know what was wrong with me, and I was fading fast.

The doc wanted to "terminate." (No one asked me.) My husband said: Wait and see.

It was a minute-by-mintute situation. We had to trust the Holy Spirit. As it turned out, I made it (obviously) and the baby was fine.

Kevin, I am not "sure" what Jesus would do, because each situation is different.

The Church gives us instruction. We don't have to live in the dark. My question is: What is the True Church?

Kevin Haug said...

The True Church is the congregation of saints in which the Gospel is rightly taught and the Sacraments are rightly administered. ;-)

Kathy said...

Define "rightly," por favor.

:-)

Rob said...

It is sad and interesting to me that people can use humanistic logic to justify killing another person and then claim a basis for this in Christianity.

If in our faith as Christians it is our responsibility to try to live as he did then we have to avoid violence and follow his command to turn the other cheek.

Self-defense is a secular legal principle and is not based on the teachings of Christ. If you resort to violence under the pretext of saving yourself then you may not be guilty of a crime but you have sinned by not living up to the expectations of your Savior.

Kevin Haug said...

Hey Kathy,

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rightly

Kevin Haug said...

Rob,

I very much appreciate your commenting on this post; however, I am beginning to wonder why it is that you do not answer any of the questions I pose?

Kathy said...

Happenstance, I have that particular dictionary on my desk, and I just looked up the definition.

I know that you are quoting Luther. Happenstance Rob is asking you about how you interpret Scripture. What would your Jesus do? He is asking about the Christian teaching on self-defense.

What can you tell him? What can you tell me?

These are the questions that must be answered: Who has the authority to interpret Scripture? What does "rightly" mean in terms of Church practices and theology? Ultimately, who is "right," who is acting "rightly" -- or do we just get mad at each other and leave the Church and start our own church?

BTW, it gives me great joy to discuss these things, especially at Christmas! :-)

Rob said...

A person is either a literalist or is not when it comes to living a Christian life.

Modern Christians avoid most if not all of his direction. Whether the greatest command 'to love the Lord, your God', to love your neighbor as yourself, to sell all that you have and give it to the poor and to pray privately and without ceasing.

I realize I started this conversation with a response to your blog that posed a hypothetical and you responded with a series of hypothetical questions.

I don't believe that based on what Christ said or the example he set that killing is ever justified, that he would use violence to stop potential violence against another person or to prevent a robbery. If we were living a true Christ driven life we wouldn't have anything worth stealing in the first place.

The questions you ask are more akin to what is the nature of man and why is he that way. We have a strong instinct to survive. Where does this instinct come from? We were made in God's image were we not? Yet, are we not also born in sin? From which side does the instinct to survive, to defend ourselves, our homes or our families come from? Some, must come from the love we feel yet much must also come from pride.

If you don't want to take the words of Christ literally then you are faced with a far worse dilemma in which you pick and choose what you believe is relevant and have no business deciding whether or not another person's choices are moral or not. Examples of this abound, people who are against abortion, for the death penalty and against programs to feed and care for the poor.

I feel like I have said all that I can on the subject (on a iPad no less-apologies for spelling) and wish you all a happy and merry Christmas.

Kevin Haug said...

Rob,

I very much appreciate your final comment, and I wish you'd continue in the conversation because I believe we are getting to the heart of the matter, and you articulated the questions and thoughts beautifully.

First the comment on literalism: yes, you are correct, either one is a literalist or one picks and chooses, and the reality is: we all pick and choose which parts of the teachings of Christ we follow and which ones we don't. It's an unfortunate fact, and your assessment that if we lived as Jesus taught: without possessions, without family, living a life for and about God, this issue wouldn't even arise.

But the vast majority of Christians have families, own possessions, and live for God while being a part of a broken world where sometimes, people of violence seek to rob us of said material goods and relationships. For my own self, I care almost nothing for my material goods. They are just that--material, inaninimate objects. They can be replaced or done without.

Yet, my relationships with my wife and children...that is another story. These, I cherish, perhaps too much. My desire to protect and care for them stems perhaps a little from selfish desire, but from much, much more. You see, I would gladly die for each of them without hesitation. I'd take a bullet so that they didn't. And I'd kill to ensure their lives were not taken.

Perhaps Jesus would do no such thing. We don't have any scriptural evidence to support what He would or wouldn't do in such a circumstance. I do know what I would do, even if it does put me at odds with what Jesus commanded and spoke.

Which does bring us back around to that whole human nature question. I believe thoroughly that I (along with all other Christians) am both saint and sinner. I have a side which embraces the teachings of Jesus and seeks to employ them in the midst of my daily life; yet, I also have a side which rebels constantly against Christ and His Word. If we are honest with ourselves, we know this to be true and are in constant need of forgiveness. Knowing we are in this state gives us a deep humility which is careful to judge another for his/her breaking of Christ's teachings.

This does not mean we cannot argue whether or not something is right or wrong or make any sort of moral judgement, but we make that judgment knowing that we stand under the same sort of judgment for our own lack of ability in following Jesus.

This is where God's grace leads us. There is more, but I'll stop at that.

Merry Christmas to you and yours, Rob. I've enjoyed our banter.

Kathy said...

Again, I apologize for inserting myself into this thread.

David Lose, a well-known and highly respected ELCA theologian, recently posted an article saying "Anyone can read the Bible."

True. This is what Luther said.

Anyone can read the Bible, and we all are free to interpret it, but in the CHURCH, who interprets the Bible?

Pastor Kevin and Rob have 2 very different views of the Mind of Christ.

In my long experience in church groups and in raising a family, I have found it -- ultimately -- helpful to say: "Well, son (or Well, Mr. Jones), you have a right to your point of view, but the Church teaches XYZ."

I sincerely believe this is the Way of Unity and the Will of God for the Church. This is Reconciliation in a Broken Church.

Kevin Haug said...

Ah, yes, Kathy, back to "The Church says x,y, and z." It's a respectable argument until one realizes The Church has and does get things completely wrong at times.

For instance, the Roman Catholic Church to which you adhere to at times and in some places still consider it to be a sin to eat meat during the Fridays of Lent. This despite Jesus' clear teaching that the eating of certain foods does not defile a person. Even more intriguing is The CHURCH's assertion that fish isn't a meat. Now, I did not get a PhD in biology, but last I checked, fish meat is still meat.

Another most intriguing teaching of "The CHURCH" is its argument that priests should not be married despite the clear biblical reference that the first pope-Peter himself-had a wife.

Now, Kathy, it is all well and good to be able to say, "The Church says..." however, one must constantly realize "The Church" is swayed by politics, greed, and the sin of human nature--just as all humans are swayed by politics, greed, and human nature. (Just look at my own denomination's stance on quite a few issues. They tend to be in lock step with the Democrat party instead of being founded upon Scriptural principles.)

And so the issue is a bit muddled considering all can be led astray.

Kathy said...

Oh, my dear Kevin! Oh, I cannot wait to start my blog!!!

I am breathless. My fingers are tied in knots as I think of how to respond to this MAGNIFICENT comment. It is a gift!

As I told you, my son is getting married this week -- a big wedding -- and I have a million little things to do. Otherwise, I would spend the day answering you!

What fun! I can't believe it!

Kathy said...

My clothes for the wedding are ready -- well almost, so I want to continue....

I was trying to say that your comment is one of the most "fertile" few sentences I have ever read. If you don't mind, I would like to use these points for my first blog post.

So you say that the Church has had some problems in the past? What a shock! You mean in 2000 years, with countless billions of members, there were some bad apples and mistakes were make? Why couldn't Jesus have foreseen this when he appointed Peter the first pope?

Now, of course, the ELCA has noticed this -- and just doesn't bother to teach anything. This is why people are just following the winds of the culture and doing whatever "seems right." Remember Hillary Clinton's famous advice to Chelsea? -- "Do the right thing."

Of course, with no one or nothing to DEFINE the "Right Thing," the folks turn to Hollywood.

Do you think my kids were born perfect? Sadly, they were not. I taught them The Faith, and they rebelled. They had something to rebel against. Now, as adults, they are both devout Catholics -- and so are their spouses.

I have soooo much more to say. I WILL DO a blog -- even though I feel afraid....

Kevin Haug said...

Ahh, Kathy, "a few mistakes"... if only. The two items I pointed out aren't merely mistakes, they are part of the official Roman Cathoilc doctrine, and they are completely contrary to Scripture. Furthermore, there is quite the unwillingness on the part of the Church of Rome to repent of such things and get in line with the teachings of Jesus and the historical fact of Peter's married state as the first Pope. Simply saying, "Oh, we've made some mistakes" without acknowledging the continuation of said mistakes and the knowledge that there is a higher authority than the interpretation of "The Church" is a bit disingenuine.

The fact of the matter is, the higher authority we appeal to is the will of God which at the same time is perfectly clear in some cases yet perfectly hidden and mysterious in many others. Strange, is it not, that oftentimes different church bodies will take what is clear and try to hide it and then take what is mysterious and try to make it perfectly clear.

Kathy said...

Ahh, Kevin, it is with tears of joy in my eyes that I type. Oh, how I love to answer your questions!

Your 2 items are fish on Fridays and married clergy.

1) Fish. Different teachings and doctrines have different weight. The "Fish on Fri." thing is small potatoes which is why Vatican II made it optional. Holy Mother Church (hereafter referred to as "HMC") wants us to progress in holiness. The small discipline of fasting from red meat on Friday is helpful. We learn self-control. We also, with that small sacrifice, honor Jesus' great sacrifice.

2) Married clergy. A much more serious issue is female clergy. The Church thinks married clergy is OK -- we may see it in the Western Church in our lifetime. This was a practice that was instituted in the Middle Ages for practical reasons. BTW -- St Paul recommends that people stay single.

Now I have tremendous respect for you, and I don't want to get too personal or, God forbid, insult you BUT: My dear Kevin, you have TWO vocations -- husband & father AND priest. You -- more than I -- can make a case for celibate clergy!

As I said, the issue of female clergy is much more complicated, and I fully intend to address it on my BLOG!!!!!!!!!

Kathy said...

One other thing: You say that Peter was married according to Scripture, therefore priests (clergy) can be married. True. THIS IS POPE BENEDICT'S ARGUMENT FOR MALE CLERGY! Jesus chose 12 men to be the first clergy. YOU CANNOT HAVE IT BOTH WAYS!

I actually do not fully agree with the Pope. I am arrogant enough to think I know better -- there are much deeper reasons. Maybe Benedict knows this and just doesn't want to confuse millions of people....

Kevin Haug said...

I am not using the same argument as Pope Benedict. Far from it. I am using scriptural evidence for the marriage of priests in that the first pope was married, and there is no condemnation of it! Period.

As to female clergy, for certain, Jesus chose the first 12 disciples as men. Scripture is clear. However, who is open to becoming a disciple of Jesus? "If you continue in my Word, you are truly my disciple and you will know the truth and the truth will set you free." Those who continue in Jesus' Word are His disciples, do you disagree?

And in the New Testament, aren't Jesus' disciples called to go forth and make more disciples? Don't we have evidence of women going forth to make disciples? I know you wish to point back to the priesthood in the OT as the roots of the Church; however, Jesus did something completely new. He instituted a different kind of worship and a different kind of priesthood. The worship is now in Spirit and in Truth, and the priesthood is the priesthood of all believers.

Scripture is clear about such matters as is the baptismal calling to look beyond gender (Galatians 3).

Kathy said...

When I have my own blog, I will go into these issues in depth. Augustine and Irenaeus were both defenders of the Faith against heresies in difficult times. Are we not in difficult times?

I feel confident, armed with the CCC and the Companion, that I can do a good job in answering questions. My foundational premise, my thesis, is going to be that paradoxically, even though Luther cried: "Faith, faith," he lost his faith -- not in God but in the holiness of the Church.

The One Holy... Church. This is what I mean when I say "the heart of the matter."

I hope you will comment.

Kevin Haug said...

Kathy, you are correct in the fact that Luther lost his faith in the holiness of the Church--at least the Church of Rome. Can you blame him? When the church supported brothels; was selling bishoprics; was meddling in politics; was selling forgiveness of sins; told folks they could obtain forgiveness by venerating relics; was corrupt to its very core. Yes, Luther had lost all faith in the Church of Rome, but he never lost faith in the Church universal as proclaimed in the Creeds.

Your failure to make such a distinction does you no service.

Kathy said...

Of course I see the distinction. That was a little comment, not a post. Luther was not insightful enough to make the distinction between the abuses created by some individuals and the structure created by Christ. (My word for that is "dummkoff.") Also, he had many other motives and problems. Did you read the post by "ELCA Conservative"? That says it all. I will certainly comment on it in my blog.

Let the festivities begin!

Kathy said...

So... Pastor Kevin, WHAT, pray tell, IS your famous "Church universal as proclaimed in the Creeds"??? You tell me what it is -- and I will join it. I promise. Is it St. John of Cat Spring? Is it the church your parents belonged to when you were a child?

The Creed says "One." Martin Luther spawned gazillions.

Kathy said...

You say:

"When the church supported brothels; was selling bishoprics; was meddling in politics; was selling forgiveness of sins; told folks they could obtain forgiveness by venerating relics...."

Beautiful! I luv it! This is true -- and it was also 500 years ago. Today -- as I type -- ordained Lutheran pastors are committing sodomy with each other, with the full approval of the Lutheran Church. Which is worse in the eyes of God? The latter -- for sure!!!

Your argument about the Bad Ol' Days in Rome has no force -- not after 2009.

Kathy said...

Kevin -- If you want to cite Scripture about Peter being married, fine, but then you also must read Paul on sodomy and Jesus Christ on divorce and re-marriage. You can't have it both ways. Either we accept Scripture or we don't.

In 2012, which church follows Scripture more closely -- Lutheran or Catholic?

Kevin Haug said...

Kathy:

#1. Luther had more understanding of the Church in his little toe than you and I have combined. I think you should read some of his work to discover this.

#2. You are already a part of this Universal Church. Unfortunately, your definition of the church is pretty myopic.

#3. I have already jumped through the discussion of adhering to one part of Scripture instead of following through with the whole of it with Rob. Perhaps you should read through such matters before wanting to rehash them.

Kathy said...

I have read plenty of Luther. Tim Lull adored him -- I have read all of Tim's book. I think Luther was a puffed-up ignoramus. He was from a back-water town in Germany -- at the dawn of the Northern Renaissance. He had very narrow views. He was very poorly educated in the Faith. This is abundantly clear from Roland Bainton's book. Have you read it? I invite you to a discussion on anything written by Martin Luther.

Of course there is a spiritual universal church, and all baptized persons are a part of it. Guess what? Jesus came to bring the Kingdom of God to Earth -- spiritual AND -- I repeat -- AND physical. It is a total cop-out on your part to stand behind point #2.

The discussion between you and Rob went nowhere. It was ultimately your personal views against his personal views. Are you the ultimate authority? If not, who is? What do I tell my kids? Pastor Kevin believes and teaches XYZ?

That's not gonna fly.

Kevin Haug said...

If you were a follower of Christ, you would simply say, "Jesus teaches x, y, and z." (Yes, I realize that comment is full of snark. Mea culpa. Mea culpa. Mea maxima culpa.)

Kathy said...

Yes, and you need to go to Confession. I feel sick. I think I am becoming fast one of those nut cases who think the world is ending.

Kathy said...

Just another thought (since I hope it will take my mind off what's on TV news): You say: "If you were a follower of Christ, you would simply say, 'Jesus teaches x, y, and z.'" I agree. What does Jesus teach about divorce and re-marriage? (Mt 5 & 19, Mk 10) What does St Paul say? (1 Cor 7:10)

Jesus says: "Heaven & earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away." Which Church teaches the words of Jesus? I will stay with the Church that teaches as Jesus taught. It is one thing to cry "Sola scriptura," and another to buck the culture when it's really hard.

I have started my blog, but haven't written anything. Maybe tomorrow.

Kathy said...

End of thread? Will you answer my question on my blog?

Back in '54, my dad came home from New Trier High School -- he was a teacher, my grandfather was a dean -- and said "There was this woman at a meeting today. She lost the argument, and said: 'It's just so hard when you know you're right!' She's a Catholic. Disgusting."

I never forgot this.

Kevin Haug said...

You can use whatever in your blog. Just give me proper citation.