Tuesday, May 24, 2005

another fight

When I was a youth pastor I was trying to get along with the other youth pastors, and for the most part did alright. I had to keep my mouth shut a bit, and if you know me, that wasn't easy. They realized that I was a bit nuts and just tryed to humour me.

But I was developing a problem. I had really made an effort to talk to my kids about relationship evangelism. And sought very hard to not use guilt, shame and fear as a motivator. I wanted people to understand that sharing Jesus is based on the love we have for Jesus, and others, not because we were scared of hell, or felt guilty about our friends going there.

But every single summer and winter camp I went to ended with the evangelism sermon. At the height of the brain washing spectacle, when the kids were at their most vulnerable, the preacher would tell them essentially, "if you friends aren't Christians, and they die they will go to hell, and they will be burning in agony for ever screaming, 'why didn't you tell me'" In other words they will go to hell and it will be your fault.

I went to the next camp meeting and told the other youth pastors, "if this message is given again, I will never come back to another camp, Jesus didn't value our salvation so much that He came and insured it Himself, only to leave it in the hands of a bunch of jr. high school kids"

They didn't agree with me, but agreed to not give that message again.

I love winning :)

the rev

21 comments:

Garth said...

Ah... the church loves its control...."we will make you evangelise your friends and get you with our program".

Perhaps they didn't count that anyone would actually think for themselves and say the obvious? Well done mate!

Christop said...

Don't forget that we are the church, though.

The Rev said...

this seems like a primary message of yours, could you explain why?

the rev

Punk Rocker 86 said...

Yeah im a teenager and sometimes i find it hard to evangilze (sorry bout the spelling) and i do belive that sharing Jesus with others should come from a love that we have for them. And i do think sometimes pastors do use the hell speech a lot, but when you think about it, it should break your heart when you know that they are going to Hell. So sharing Christ doesnt come from fear, but love, and concern for that persons life.

Punk Rocker 86 said...

yeah its me again, writing two things in a row but i was reading through some of your other blogs and you swore, do you think its right saying your a christian and swearing on the same page?

Pastor Eddy Wayne said...

Well Put,
Thanks
Eddy

The Rev said...

Punk Rocker 86 said...

yeah its me again, writing two things in a row but i was reading through some of your other blogs and you swore, do you think its right saying your a christian and swearing on the same page?

I never swear, I sometimes use words that some other people put on the naughty list. And yes I think that is okay. If this is a major problem for you I can make an indepth article on why I believe that using "cuss words" is not contrary to scripture.

But at the end of the day, does it really matter whether you say shit or poo poo? I don't think Jesus is too worried about it.

the rev

Tim said...

I've just been writing an essay on hell and spent a lot of time focussing on what Jesus actually said in which context. It is very interesting to note that Jesus didn't preach about hell to the masses. He spoke about it with the religious elite of the day, but never to the masses. Jesus certainly never threatened normal people with hell. Interesting ...

MS said...

Never really got the threat of Hell, but then again, I'm not a Christian of anykind. Since its pretty easy to get into Heaven, I never really saw the big deal about it.

Punk Rocker 86 said...

I guess its your choice to call what are swear words or not, but ive made a personal choice not to use those words. If you want to write the article about the swear words you can, but if you dont want thats fine. Its your choice, just make sure its right.
-86

Punk Rocker 86 said...

Isnt one of the ten commandments "Do not swear"...
and doesnt that send mixed signals to nonchristians around you?
just wondering

Keith Lowell Jensen said...

Regarding the swearing, as far as I know the Bible says nothing about some words being good and others being bad. Combining words in ways that disrespect your parents, or take the lord's name in vain, yes, but curse words, nope. Not that I've ever seen.
Who decides a word is a curse word anyway. There's not difference between shit, crap and poop. They all smell the same. The whole idea of certain words being naughty is ridiculous. Diry Sanchez is way dirty, and that one I can say on TV!
George Carlin was on a show where they let him say shit in reference to marijuana but not in reference to poop. So it was the opposite of the real world. He COULD smoke some shit, but he could NOT take a shit.

Keith Lowell Jensen said...

"You shalt not swear falsely by the name of the Lord..." - This commandment is to never take the name of God in a vain oath. In Exodus, the text reads "in a vain oath" while in Deuteronomy it reads "in a false oath.

I think this is the one you mean, and you'll see it does not refer to what some people regard as swear words.

The Rev said...

No, in fact as my little brother pointed out there isn't much written about certain words being bad. If you study the scriptures that say things like, "let no unwholesome thing come from your mouth" they seem to be in the original greek applying mainly to sexual kinds of talking, innuendo and so forth.

It is funny that most Christians get all bent out of shape about "cuss words" yet they don't seem to have a problem with gossip which is talked about way more explicitly in scripture.

Another issue is culture, if you use the word sucks you will offend my mother. Aww that sucks, is to her a very offensive thing to say, as is scum bag, which to her would mean a used and discarded rubber. However in her lifetime these two words have changed in meaning and now are "acceptable" words. And again as I pointed out, you can say very dirty nasty things without using "cuss words".

As for non Christians getting mixed messages, I think the typical Christian gives them mixed messages. God loves you, but you have to change and be just like other people. Or even worse, it is okay to drive around in a sixty thousand dollar SUV while people are starving all over the world, but don't say shit, cause that is bad. My non Christian friends understand that being a Christian means following Jesus, not following a bunch of silly rules that only make sense to church people. They see the way I love my family, and my God, and them, and take comfort in the fact that even though I live in pursuit of a higher ideal, I still talk to them on their own level and don't appear holier than thou.

the rev

Punk Rocker 86 said...

keith thank you for the correction, that was the one i was refering to, thanks for the clarification. In Eph. 4:29 "Dont use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them."
I know that this doesnt specify actual swear words but i think that swear words can be classified in foul.
k i dont want to change into a big argument, so i guess its just a personal choice and whatever you're comfortable with.
Philippians 4:8-"fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise..."

Punk Rocker 86 said...

for the last thing the rev said i think you are right, as i was looking over the Bible today i noticed the same thing about the unwholsome thing. I think it is still a bad thing, personally, but there are bigger things out there to worry about than swear words.

Punk Rocker 86 said...

im done with this topic,
i just found out one of my friends mom died on her motorcycle on her way to pick him up from school. Please pray for him, they are both atheists.

The Rev said...

that is truly tragic. I will pray for him and the rest of his family. I will also pray for you to be Jesus to the family in the midst of this tragedy.

Funny how the little stuff goes away in the midst of the important things in life.

the rev

Punk Rocker 86 said...

Thank you for praying for him.
I set a personal boundry for myself to not swear, just because i know my limits and if i swear i know I'll end up hanging out with other kids and go down the wrong road. It is ok to use these words i guess if you want to and know your limits. i just know that if i started swearing i would end up away from Christ.
Well its been fun having this discussion, In the mean time I'll keep looking for more topics.
God bless,
-86

Christop said...

I'd say, don't do anything that's against your conscience, because it'll weaken your conscience. And don't do anything that would amke other people go against their conscience.

With regards to swearing, there weren't any offensive words in Hebrew or Aramaic because they didn't regard the body as being evil and the spirit as pure.

Boltono said...

"9-02pm punk rocker 86" wrote something about should followers of Jesus swear.
Of course they can!! And do. Unless they are religious suppressive hypocrites who can't even imagine thet God fully knows what the underside of their bottom looks like when they go to the toilet.
Let's be human. There are times for everything under heaven. Sometimes a stream of swearwords expressed in exasperation towards God helps in the search for Christ in us and spiritual cleaning and development.
http://boltono.typepad.com I've written more about this at my blog, but the main article I hope all read is "Basic how to live" which is not in "recent posts".