Thursday, June 24, 2010

Tea Parties and TAMPERING

PLEASE CHECK OUT LA SUNSETT'S BLOG........AND PLEASE SEND THE INFORMATION TO NON-BLOGGING FRIENDS...PEOPLE NEED TO BE AWARE OF VOTE SPLITTING THROUGH FAKE TEA PARTY CANDIDATES.....NOVEMBER'S ELECTION'S NEVER BEEN QUITE SO IMPORTANT AND WE CAN'T LET THIS HAPPEN.

96 comments:

Ducky's here said...

How do you spot a REAL Bagger candidate?

LASunsett said...

Ducky, you do your homework.

That's how.

You must know what they stand for by taking enough time to process and evaluate their history, their words, and their actions. It's not a I know one when I see one kind of thing.

The situation with Alvin Greene shows just what happens when people who don;t look into things a little deeper than just the surface. SC Dems did not vet him, but they saw he was the black candidate and decided that he the man. Big mistake.

I am sure that the white Dem would stand little chance against DeMint, anyway. But the lesson is still there.

Z said...

The Ashjian candidacy of NV was an excellent example. When his name first came out, the Tea Party people were asking "Who IS HE?"

That's a pretty good clue.......when people involved in the TP ask, that's something we have to be aware of. I urge all Dems, Indies, and Republicans to check into the TP candidate who's appealing to them... LA SUNSETT's advice is sound.

Anonymous said...

Why am I NOT surprised. If you can't win honestly, anything goes.

Silvrlady

Karen Howes said...

Yup, it's important to be aware and research candidates.

Speedy G said...

How do you spot a REAL Tea Party candidate?

They spell 'g'overnment with a small 'g'... and G_d w/a BIG one.

Faith said...

At least this means they must not think they can pull off sufficient voter fraud at the polls, they expect votes to be counted.

Z said...

Thanks for your comments...

Speedy, that is a FABULOUS point.

Faith...it just might be :-)

Ducky's here said...

LA, I was thinking about the candidate in Nevada. The one that suggested bartering chickens for health care.

I would imagine the movement would want to consider her an anomaly but she may be a legit Bagger and barely sane in te eyes of high functionals.

Faith said...

For your information, Ducky, the Nevada candidate who used the example of bartering for health care with chickens was Sue Lowden and she was not adopted by any of the Tea Parties, in fact they rejected her.

Faith said...

She also lost the primary. Sharron Angle won.

Z said...

Ducky, no more 'bagger'...we don't use that expression here. I'll delete.

Thanks, Faith.

Anonymous said...

I'll just say, liberals or leftists don't want you to know the truth, conservatives do.

People who believe what they're doing is right, don't need subterfuge and dirty tricks.

And Ducky, evidently you fit this leftist image to a "T".

You either lied or didn't know what you were talking about. However, no one here would take anything you say regarding politics seriously anyway.


Faith, good going !

Pris

LASunsett said...

//LA, I was thinking about the candidate in Nevada. The one that suggested bartering chickens for health care.//

1. Sue Lowden. She didn't win the nomination, Sharron Angle did. Moot issue.

2. That's not what she was saying, she was speaking of how medical expenses were paid back before there was insurance. Putting into perspective on how we can barter for healthcare today.

Right now, insurance companies negotiate costs with providers. I think she was suggesting that private citizens could do the same thing.

Context, Ducky, context. It's very important when trying to interpret intentions, motives, and the meanings behind the rhetoric. You must look at the context in which the statement was made. In this case, I think you didn't do it.

Ducky's here said...

Well it is hardly a moot issue. There is no formal party so just how does one identify an authentic candidate?

Does the candidate have to be Rand Paul (great name) insane? Or do some of them live in the current century?

Craig and Heather said...

It would be nice to have a legitimate second option. I'm afraid most of us have been played by the Republicrats for years.

It really is similar to the "monkey business" video, Z. People are told "count how many times the white team passes the ball". And while everyone's doing that, half the audience misses the gorilla that waltzes through the game. And, when you know to watch for the gorilla, you may well miss the other significant changes that you weren't expecting.

A honest-to-goodness second party might offer a real voter's choice at least.

Heather

LASunsett said...

//Well it is hardly a moot issue. There is no formal party so just how does one identify an authentic candidate?//

The candidate that advocates for the solutions that afford the most freedom and the least amount of government intrusion. Others may come from a different perspective, but that's my opinion.

I know you like government and you think it's a panacea for all that ails. But I see government as creating problems that they bill as only fixable by them. In other words, they make the problem so they can fix it. That makes it a scam.

More problems = more government = more problems = more government, etc etc etc.

It is a vicious cycle that has to at some point be broken. At some point when the government has nationalized everything so they can fix it, where will it get the revenue to operate?

It's not that hard, when you use logic to solve the equation.

LASunsett said...

//A honest-to-goodness second party might offer a real voter's choice at least.//

Choice of what? The Democrat?

Because that is exactly who will benefit from a third party at this point in time.

I am not excited with most of the GOP either. but this election is too important to let the Dems have two more years without a check or balance to slow this perilous agenda, from converting the nation into ashes.

Maybe later down the road a third party can work if the GOP does not give us what we want. But, we will never know if we throw away our vote and let Obama's cronies solidify their influence.

If this happens, there may never be another Republican in the WH or in control of either House ever again. Once they legalize every illegal in this nation, they will guarantee themselves a solid majority until long after all of here are gone.

All politicians play us, but right now we have to decide who will play us the least. Maybe, just maybe, many in the GOP (who once took our support for granted) have learned their lesson.

There are no guarantees with anything, even a third party. We know what the Dems are offering and no one here is happy (except maybe Ducky) with the progressive big government agenda. Sometimes we just have to roll the dice and take a chance.

Craig and Heather said...

Our country's a mess and we've been moving in basically the same direction for years.

I'd like to believe the Republican party actually represents those who value family, conservative values and freedom. If I come across someone I feel will do a good job, I'll likely vote (R). But personally, I'm done voting for any candidate that my burns my conscience. This is in God's hands and I have to answer to Him concerning who I consider my savior.

I doubt Ducky's happy with anything the Democrat's have to offer either. He sees some of our problems pretty clearly, even if he may not fully recognize the root problem or have a perfect solution.

I'll be back after I slip into my flame retardant suit ;)

Heather

Faith said...

I agree, Heather, but I did give in and vote for McCain -- because Obama was just SO rotten, and at the time Palin's presence covered a multitude of sins for me. But for the longest time I wasn't going to vote at all, and I'm basically back to that position. Except this time I've got Sharron Angle in Nevada I can vote for, and I won't have any problem doing that.

Z said...

"Because that is exactly who will benefit from a third party at this point in time."

LA SUNSETT's right.

I keep remembering the Old Testament and how God never 'twanged any magic twanger' to fight his battles, he employed the Israelites....That's us these days. Our party, like it or not (and I sure don't like a lot of the people nor the machine-feeling of it) is closer to the founding fathers' goals and God's plan, in my humble opinion......
We have to fight and not voting isn't in that equation.
I think a LOT of Conservatives stayed home "WE'LL SHOW THE REPUBLICANS!"
Ya, good work.....now the whole country's suffering badly from this president... REAL good work (sarcasm)

We have to vote for whoever's closest to our beliefs....and our beliefs are a belief in God and the Scripture and why He formed this great country. We have to save her from bankruptcy, save our people from complacency and welfare, give our people freedom to be who they can be, to worship God, to raise families, etc etc.....

We will have no chance after November if we don't win big...they will give illegals the vote (wait for it) and that will be it. open palms....anchor babies.........

End of America. Case closed.

Craig and Heather said...

Faith,

I do understand the temptation to go for the "lesser of two evils". I've done it myself before.

We each need to be asking the Lord for direction. And we need to be ready to listen and do what He says.

Keep beating your "repentance" drum. :)





Z: I keep remembering the Old Testament and how God never 'twanged any magic twanger' to fight his battles, he employed the Israelites....That's us these days.

Israel fought on a physical level. But God directed the outcome of each battle and He did not fight for His people when they disobeyed Him.
When they disregarded His instruction or failed to trust Him, they tended to lose badly.

I do take the OT pictures very seriously and personally have had to re-evaluate my own tendency toward misplaced loyalty.
I'm in no position to judge you or anyone else on this count, but I feel it's at least worth mentioning.





H

Ducky's here said...

The candidate that advocates for the solutions that afford the most freedom and the least amount of government intrusion. Others may come from a different perspective, but that's my opinion.

---------------------

And you take it as a matter of faith that those two concepts are necessarily independent.

Yup, that's right wing "thought" for you. Simplex in the extreme.

Craig and Heather said...

Now, if this sort of Republican is "for real", I might consider voting for him.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQQdZFtHJD8&feature=related

Z said...

H...that's why we have to not disregard God...but fight the battle.
And, yes, that Republican is certainly for real and I"d vote for him TOMORROW if he were running for president (and I'd heard more of how he feels on international business)

Ducky...great freedom and government intrusion? And you think WE'RE messed up :-)

Craig and Heather said...

Sunsett: The candidate that advocates for the solutions that afford the most freedom and the least amount of government intrusion. Others may come from a different perspective, but that's my opinion.

---------------------

Ducky And you take it as a matter of faith that those two concepts are necessarily independent.

Yup, that's right wing "thought" for you. Simplex in the extreme.


*****************************

A wide range of freedom is a blessing which comes with heavy responsibility. And those who have been gifted such need to manage it wisely.

When individuals rightly self-govern, there is little need for strong, centralized external govt to be pushing people around.

Unfortunately, America, as a whole, has done a really good job of squandering her freedom on selfish pursuits.

God is patient but He doesn't let His people get away with idolatry indefinitely. I'm thinking those of us who claim Christ's name need to be carefully examining our motives for wanting to maintain freedom and control of our own lives.



H

Z said...

H " thinking those of us who claim Christ's name need to be carefully examining our motives for wanting to maintain freedom and control of our own lives. "

Can you explain what you mean here?

Faith said...

I don't know what Heather meant with the comment about desiring freedom. But on the general subject of voting our conscience,
Christians disagree about what that means but what Heather seems to be saying, and I agree, is that our conscience should prohibit us from voting for anyone who promotes policies that violate God's government. It doesn't improve the choice if that person is less of a violator than the other guy.

I believe we have to follow a strict understanding of our moral obligation -- even if I do give in and decide to vote for a McCain at times. You can't win the battles that matter by siding with an enemy of God, even a lesser enemy of God. That is just a formula for a continual slide into worse and worse.

Those who argue that if we refuse to vote we are then the reason the worst guy / other party won need to consider that if their party wants our vote they need to put up candidates we can support. It isn't our job to save the party. They have to meet the standards of their constituents, not the other way around. They are supposed to represent US, remember?

If the country has nothing but bad and worse candidates, that's terrible for the country, but my job IS to be true to my conscience and NOT support anyone who is opposed to God. I don't regret my vote against Obama, I couldn't NOT vote against such an antichrist, but in a way I'm glad McCain didn't win.

I do believe the country is under God's judgment and the only way out of that is a radical turn back to God's standards. And the only way that is going to happen is through a truly miraculous revival. I pray for it. It's possible.

LASunsett said...

//This is in God's hands and I have to answer to Him concerning who I consider my savior. //

As do we all. You are not alone in that regard.

LASunsett said...

//Yup, that's right wing "thought" for you. Simplex in the extreme.//

Fine, if that's what you want to call it. Adding more bureaucracy to an already saturated bureaucracy with all of the incompetence, laziness, and corruption that already exists does not make any more sense than being allergic to poison ivy and rolling around in it.


Time and time again, government fails the people. It is failing people now in the Gulf, it fails every time it doesn't give the taxpayer a return in their investment. Government is run by people who are fallible, and then add the corruption into it and you have an even lower common denominator.

So, Ducky you can put your faith into that kind of system if you like. To me, it is not logical.

Craig and Heather said...

H " thinking those of us who claim Christ's name need to be carefully examining our motives for wanting to maintain freedom and control of our own lives. "

Can you explain what you mean here?


Sure. I'll try to be brief and do hope you will consider where I'm coming from.

Not long after President Obama was elected, I started becoming quite agitated over what I could see happening to our country under his leadership. The stuff he's been pushing is not God-friendly by any stretch of the imagination and he appears to be incredibly incompetent.

By inauguration day I was having panic attacks because I was sure we are all going to be rounded up and shipped off to the secret re-education camps I'd read about on the conspiracy websites I inexplicably kept encountering.

The Lord left me that way for several months, even as I begged Him to do something to change the circumstances or at least bring me back from the edge of insanity.

When I was finally ready to listen to Him, He prompted me to take an unvarnished look at my real reasons for not wanting Obama and co. burning down our system.

And, for the most part, it was pure selfishness. I don't want someone wresting "my" property from me and redistributing it to those who haven't earned it. But neither was I looking for anyone with whom I might share what God has graciously entrusted to my stewardship.

I don't want the govt shoving into my family's business but had to admit that God often uses severe physical hardship to bring lost souls to Him or refine those who already know Him. I had to ask myself whether I trust God enough to safely handle the souls of my loved ones regardless of what happens to the US and, at the time, the honest answer was "no, I didn't".

Spiritually, we often can stagnate when life is easy. There is a reason Jesus likened a rich man's entry into His Kingdom with a camel passing through a needle's eye. The "richer" we are in this life, the less likely we are to see our true spiritual bankruptcy. I often liken America to the Revelation church of Laodicea. We are fat, full and largely blind to both our own neediness before the Lord and the neediness of those around us. Ease of existence has a numbing effect on the soul and our faith in God often does not get properly exercised and strengthened because we can turn to our bank accounts, insurance policies, jobs, TV's, toys, food or whatever in order to distract ourselves from the reality that we are basically at God's mercy at all times. It's easy to say God's in control when life is smooth sailing. But when things get ugly, it is tempting to think He fell asleep or something.

Like Peter, who rebuked Jesus for saying that He would have to suffer and die, my mind was most definitely on earthly things rather than the things of the Lord and it broke my heart to realize it.

Z, you've been to my site and seem to have appreciated the things I blog. I'm not particularly talented or educated. The ability to see Scripture the way I do came as a direct result of the thrashing I got for being so stupid and self-centered about the political and economic mess we are in. The Lord picked me up and has helped me to look at both people and this situation more from His perspective. And, although the external circumstances have worsened, I now have confidence the Lord will only allow what is necessary to accomplish His perfect will.

My motive has changed from "I must pick the best political scheme in order to save America" to "God is saving His people and I need to be on His side".

Does that help?

H

Craig and Heather said...

And, for the record, Ducky's not a short-bus window licking communist agitator.

For all his crustiness on this site, he has made some accurate observations about what is wrong with our nation and he's not any happier about the mess than anyone else. I'm reasonably sure I disagree with the majority of his ideas on how to fix things, but the man is not an idiot, nor does he "hate" America.

As far as his Catholicism goes, he and the Lord will need to sort that out. Over the past 20 or so months, the Lord stripped my religious insulation down to where all I had was my belief that Jesus alone saves. It's a scary place to be, but also has been very healing as He built me back up.

Heather

Craig and Heather said...

Faith,

I can't copy-paste your entire comment, but yes! You understand quite well what I meant.

Heather

Speedy G said...

Defeating bands of outsiders is much easier than defeating a bunch of dreamers. They're so much easier to recognize.

Z said...

H, as for Ducky, he has made some correct observations: he might not hate America, but I"ve known him for 12 years and he has never presented anything that helped America but to suggest socialism and to malign about everything our founding fathers stood for....

I thought that's what you were saying, it turns out I did understand, as it turns out, but am very glad for the clarification...and additional thoughts.

As far as trusting God in regard to your stewardship and redistribution, for me, that's micro and macro...In GENERAL, I don't welcome redistribution and believe it goes against the Word of God; In specifics in my own life, I think you're so right, that it is our stewardship to help others and I try to. I believe that builds those people up, it's "giving the fishing pole, not the fish"...But, I can't stop there as some Conservatives do, believing we must NEVER give the fish!..I believe we need a fish for a while, or maybe always, and if the pole can put us on a more self-reliant path, that's the better plan... But, for society...not just the fish....

I used to not give a buck to a homeless man on the street when asked because I figured he'd drink it...now, I don't consider that; what he does with my help is not my business. But I have to help.

I will probably continue to vote like that, too.....I want to defeat those who are looking to completely change our country to one of dependence in its citizens ... and, of course, I can't vote for a pro abortion candidate, for example...

Heather, in this vein...could you vote for Mormon Mitt Romney were he to run again?

Craig and Heather said...

Hi Z,

Glad the explanation helped.

Concerning socialism vs capitalism. I don't believe either system is inherently "good" or "evil". Those who understand the basic human nature to be one of depravity can honestly assess the pros and cons of either. I don't have time to detail an explanation at this time, but an understanding of WHY either economic system can be a complete failure rests in the reality that human beings are involved and will make mistakes regardless of having good intentions. Then of course, there are those who are completely given over to our inherent wickedness. The problem isn't as much the system as it is those who are running it.

I'm not saying Ducky's suggestions are particularly helpful, and won't try to argue with one who's known him as long as you have. I just wanted to publicly say that (assuming he answered my e-mails truthfully), I don't see him as simply being stubborn or stupid or anti-American. It seems as though his view is similar to mine in that the America conservatives would like to preserve is not the America that exists at this time. Again, I don't have time right now to explain that, but if you would like to know what I mean, let me know.


There are a lot of people who feel a restlessness of spirit right now and although Ducky might be looking in the wrong direction for his answers I do believe the Lord has thumped him over the head. He may well be experiencing a similar spiritual battle to the one I outlined in my previous novel-length comment.


Personally, I'm afraid that if we continue to view the economy as the "bottom line" then we just might all be looking in the wrong direction.

I'm all for voting conscience...and we all have a different tolerance level concerning the trustworthiness of candidates.

I would need to know more about Romney before I could answer your question.

Hope your day is blessed!

Heather

Faith said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Faith said...

I just have to stick my two cents in here, Heather, and say that while I agree with you that it's fallen human nature that misgoverns the world, I believe socialism IS inherently evil because it steals from some to give to others and it creates bureaucracies that make for waste and builds up government against the citizenry. In fact I think it is a counterfeit of Christian principles applied by fallen human nature and therefore it is doubly evil.

I believe America was founded on Christian principles and that includes the principle of maximum freedoms for all, economic and otherwise, with the caveat that if it is not carefully guarded it can be twisted to serve fallen human nature instead of God -- and clearly that has happened over the last few decades. The founders were clear that the system of government they gave us could serve only a MORAL people -- and at that time some 99% of the country was seriously Christian, perhaps not all born again but certainly morally and ethically Christian. That can't be said of today's America.

I do think that capitalism is the best possible economic system in this fallen world, but it needs to be regulated because of fallen human nature which is selfish and will exploit others if not restrained. But in itself the system is good, or at least it's the best system possible, and handled rightly with Christian ethics it builds wealth FOR taking care of the poor. We've fallen down on that job too -- and that may be a big part of the reason we're in the pickle we're in these days.

Z said...

H, I think the question is more his Mormonism than Romney himself...I ask because their religious views are different...

I wish I did need an explanation about how America as we knew her doesn't exist anymore. I'd love to think you and Ducky are wrong, believe me. I write about this frequently...how I really don't think our values can ever be the same again because they've been so watered down and even gone the extreme opposite. One can't live in an America which is offering condoms to 9 year olds and think this country still exists as we'd like her to.
Still, I think there are enough people who do maintain the values of our founding fathers and that would be my goal more than veering to Socialism, which is Ducky's solution.

There's a happy medium but I will stand up for Conservative values and respecting and even revering Christianity in our country again over anything else. It's one of the reasons I blog.

Z said...

Wow, Faith, I wish I'd read your comment before I wrote mine!!
Well done...that's very much how I feel, mine more simply written (as usual) but nonetheless very similar to yours.

Faith said...

...how I really don't think our values can ever be the same again because they've been so watered down and even gone the extreme opposite. One can't live in an America which is offering condoms to 9 year olds and think this country still exists as we'd like her to.

Right, this is certainly NOT the America of the founders and unfortunately we no doubt deserve socialism and all the other forms of destruction coming at us, even, God help us, Sharia law?? But the immorality itself is a form of judgment.

BUT REVIVAL COULD CHANGE ALL THAT. I wish I could set a fire under all Christians to seek revival as if everything depended on it because in a very real sense it does. All true revivals -- the coming down of God to convict and change His people -- CHANGE THE MORAL CLIMATE -- without anyone having to TRY to change it. God Himself convicts people -- starting with Christians -- who then have the power to take the gospel out in a way we just DON'T have it otherwise -- and everything changes.

Revival ALWAYS starts with REPENTANCE. Before that it starts with PRAYER, lots and lots and lots of prayer. This is our only hope. And I feel terrible preaching this because I can't do it myself except for very sporadically. So I guess I have to keep preaching it to myself too. It's the only way the country can be saved, the ONLY way.

Z said...

Faith, beautifully said.
The other night at a Church lecture series (THE TRUTH PROJECT, which I HIGHLY recommend), one of our parishioners said he thought bringing out country back to Christianity was over zealous ...based on something I had said about wishing our country would at least stop taking Christian symbols and values OUT of America.
I had to say "Sam, you don't think that my suggesting we return to our Christian roots means shooting anybody who won't become a Christian, do you?"
it created a little of a flap because, apparently, even at our church, there are a few (very few, but a few) who suggest that repenting and turning again to God means FORCING NON CHRISTIANS TO ACCEPT JESUS!
Sure, WE WISH, but to even consider that is what we mean is kind of scary.

Faith said...

Oh, your church has the TRUTH PROJECT! Wonderful! YES, I've also been recommending it. My brother bought the set himself and let me borrow it but it's usually shown at church gatherings. I'm so glad you are getting to see it. You will be VERY pleased with his presentation on the American founding assuming you aren't there yet -- it's near the end of the series. But the whole thing is good.

Oh I know what you mean about people thinking our wanting our Christian country back means -- oh I don't know what all, pogroms and inquisitional torture and something like Sharia law? They don't understand that their FREEDOMS came out of our Christian principles and the tyranny comes when the Christian principles are all gone. America had learned from Europe how NOT to run a Christian country and that lesson infused every aspect of our Constitution and laws.

The Truth Project, by the way, is one of a few hopeful signs I see on the horizon. The more churches see it the more Christian worldview will be reinstated and maybe we can even get people praying for revival (not that he promotes revival, but getting our Christian worldview sorted out is a good platform).

Z said...

Connie, YES! We saw the founding fathers bit Wednesday night!! It was OUTSTANDING.

But, there's a Christian woman sitting there listening, shaking her head in agreement the full hour long ...and then says "I think Obama's such a good man" You can't make this stuff up.
She said that, also, after seeing last week's lecture on the unGodliness of Redistribution ,etc etc.........!!! EVERYTHING Obama's doing is anathema to The Truth Project, but she loves the lectures and LOVES OBAMA! (I'll email you what happened Wed night...with her...grrrr)!! I don't get people who don't THINK.
You can like Obama..FINE.
You can like the Truth Project's message..WONDERFUL.
But to admire BOTH!? impossible.
and yes, we should put nonChristians in camps, right? :-)

Faith said...

Oh it gives me a headache to think of the confusion in that poor woman's head.

Craig and Heather said...

H, I think the question is more his Mormonism than Romney himself...I ask because their religious views are different...

Well, Z,
The election is still a ways off and at this time, I do not know for sure that the Lord would forbid me to vote for Romney.

We've had past leaders in the US who were not necessarily Christian, but, as Faith pointed out, were moral and respected the Law of the land.

At this time, the honest answer to your question is "I'm not sure whether I'd vote for Romney". If, on election day, I was still unsure, I probably would not vote for him.

At any rate, I try to be careful to not become emotionally wrapped up in a candidate's personality or place my hope in him personally to save us all from immanent danger.

H

Craig and Heather said...

Faith and Z,

I want to clarify that when I speak of socialism, I do not mean what most of us think of as "Socialism".

Secular socialism is an utter failure as it attempts to take biblical principles of sharing resources and goods and caring for the weaker members of a society, removes God from the equation, rewards irresponsible behavior and basically forces people to look to the government as god. I'm not talking about that sort of socialism and am right with you in your opposition of such a system.

I'm only speaking of the theory of socialism in which all members of a community willingly share so that no one lacks. Ideally, all would contribute and all would benefit. The early church appears to have done this and I don't see that it is condemned.
I tend to think it is highly unrealistic to believe this sort of socialism could be pulled off on a large scale with as mixed a population as we have in the US. There is no commonly held standard for religion or morality and too may people have already proven they would just "work" the system. Of course, if a socialistic society was set up according to biblical standards, those who refuse to work would also not get to eat :)


Capitalism has it's good points, too, as workers are encouraged to excel in their professions, and are fairly compensated for doing well. Also, when one owns personal property, he is able to freely bless others as the Lord directs.

On the other hand, human nature also can take advantage of this system as some individuals grab for more and the needs of less well-off members of a society often can go ignored. Not everyone goes hungry just because he *won't* work.

Personally, I believe there needs to be a proper balance of the positive elements in both systems. And I believe that the local Church (not the federal govt) ought to be the one caring for the truly needy among us.

Does my perspective sound less scary now?

I considered this a while back and if you are interested in wading through my blog post, I can give you the link.


Heather

Anonymous said...

Heather and Faith, are you saying you may not vote for a Mormon, but tolerate Obama, who is most likely a muslim or an atheist?

In fact, if I could vote for someone I was convinced loves America, her people, respects the Constitution, and loves freedom, I would.

I consider freedom as the bottom line, and I would say the most evil of all governments in my lifetime were and are socialist. Hitler and Stalin come to mind.

There is nothing wrong with consumerism, if one's wealth is honestly earned, and personal responsibility is observed.

Finally, my main concern regarding the future, are my children, and grandson. Mr. Pris and I have had our turn seeking the American dream. I'm concerned with our children having that same right.

I would not support a theocracy of any kind, but a government which observes freedom of religion and recognizes our Judeo-Christian heritage and foundation, while respecting others' right to observe their religions as well.

Jesus did say, "render to Caesar, that which is Caesar's", so, I think we have to be careful not to demand Christian purity from those who represent us, but allegiance to America as she was founded to be.


Pris

Z said...

Hi, Heather:
YOU SAY: (I'LL KEEP YOU IN LOWER CASE AND I'LL STAY IN UPPER CASE):
Secular socialism is an utter failure as it attempts to take biblical principles of sharing resources and goods and caring for the weaker members of a society, removes God from the equation, rewards irresponsible behavior and basically forces people to look to the government as god. I'm not talking about that sort of socialism and am right with you in your opposition of such a system.

YOU'RE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT THERE...


I'm only speaking of the theory of socialism in which all members of a community willingly share so that no one lacks. Ideally, all would contribute and all would benefit. The early church appears to have done this and I don't see that it is condemned.
I tend to think it is highly unrealistic to believe this sort of socialism could be pulled off on a large scale with as mixed a population as we have in the US. There is no commonly held standard for religion or morality and too may people have already proven they would just "work" the system. Of course, if a socialistic society was set up according to biblical standards, those who refuse to work would also not get to eat :)

I BLOG ON THIS OFTEN, OR AT LEAST COMMENT RE THIS WHEN IT APPLIES.....WE USED TO HAVE FAMILIES WHO LIVED TOGETHER AND SUPPORTED EACH OTHER, WE HAD NEIGHBORS WHO KNEW EACH OTHER, ATTENDED CHURCH OR SYNAGOGUE TOGETHER AND HELPED IN TIMES OF NEED.....THEY'D NEVER CONSIDER NOT HELPING THEIR FAMILY OR NEIGHBOR/FRIENDS...TODAY, IT'S NOT SO TRUE. THIS HAS PROMOTED THE 'BIG GOVERNMENT HAND OUT' MENTALITY.

Capitalism has it's good points, too, as workers are encouraged to excel in their professions, and are fairly compensated for doing well. Also, when one owns personal property, he is able to freely bless others as the Lord directs.

On the other hand, human nature also can take advantage of this system as some individuals grab for more and the needs of less well-off members of a society often can go ignored. Not everyone goes hungry just because he *won't* work.

DID YOU SEE MY POST ON HOW CAPITALISM CAN'T EXIST WITHOUT CHRISTIANITY? I BELIEVE YOU PROBABLY DID....IT'S AN OVER SIMPLIFICATION OF MINE BUT IT'S NOT TOO OFF THE TRUTH...WHEN PEOPLE WHO 'HAVE' AREN'T HELPING THOSE WHO 'HAVE NOT', CAPITALISM CAN'T WORK......BUT THE HELPING SHOULD COME FROM THE HEART...CHRISTIAN GIVING...AND SO WITH PEOPLE DOING THAT LESS AND THE RICH DOING LESS OF HELPING THE 'HAVE NOT' (IN GENERAL), WE'VE GOT A PERFECT STORM FOR THE TYPE OF SOCIALISM WE DON'T ASCRIBE TO.


Personally, I believe there needs to be a proper balance of the positive elements in both systems. And I believe that the local Church (not the federal govt) ought to be the one caring for the truly needy among us.

Does my perspective sound less scary now?

IT WASN'T SCARY, BUT YES, YOU MAKE FINE SENSE HERE.....AS THIS SOCIETY TALKS PEOPLE OUT OF CHURCH (GOD IS DEAD, RELIGION'S A CRUTCH, ETC), FEWER PEOPLE ARE GOING AND SO THE CHURCHES DON'T HAVE AS MUCH TO CARE WITH!! ANOTHER REASON SOME WILL SAY 'GOVERNMENT MUST HELP...CHURCHES AREN'T'...WAIT TILL CHURCHES LOSE THEIR TAX EXEMPTION, WHICH I BELIEVE IS COMING ANY MONTH NOW..AFTER NOVEMBER, OF COURSE.


I considered this a while back and if you are interested in wading through my blog post, I can give you the link.

LINK AWAY..! XXX

RE; MITT ROMNEY, I ONLY ASKED BECAUSE YOU SORT OF SPOKE OF NOT VOTING FOR THOSE WHOSE FAITH IS NOT SCRIPTURAL.

Z said...

AND AGAIN PRISCILLA WRITES ALMOST WHAT I WAS SAYING..ABOUT ROMNEY:-)
WE DO THIS ALL THE TIME, PRIS!!

Anonymous said...

Good grief Z, we have to stop meeting like this!!! Ha Ha. I mean, what is this a mind meld?

Pris

Craig and Heather said...

Heather and Faith, are you saying you may not vote for a Mormon, but tolerate Obama, who is most likely a muslim or an atheist?

Goodness, no!

We have what we have with Obama. God allowed it, so I'm trying not to whine, but I cannot believe the man is still in office. If an elected official proves to be either incompetent or criminal, he ought to be held accountable regardless of what he says he believes.

I would say the most evil of all governments in my lifetime were and are socialist. Hitler and Stalin come to mind.

My understanding is that socialism is simply an economic model but, because of the way godless men attempt to establish, it must be backed by a forceful, often violent governmental regime.



Z

here is the link
http://onmysoapbox2.wordpress.com/2008/10/18/heather-waxes-political-sort-of/


Your remark about giving money to the homeless also reminded me of:

http://onmysoapbox2.wordpress.com/2009/09/14/a-long-story-a-lesson-learned-a-faith-strengthened/

You might enjoy that.

H

Faith said...

I didn't say a word about Romney one way or the other, Pris, and the question wasn't addressed to me. If I find all his principles are in keeping with Christian ethics, as I often do with Mormons, I would probably vote for him against any liberal.

But I would have to give it careful thought, because of the behemoth of the Mormon church that's behind him and my knowledge of their twisted theology, which at the higher levels amounts to Satanism. Yes I would have to pray about it and give it a lot of thought.

Faith said...

Heather, your idea of a voluntary socialism was only practiced by the Jerusalem church and as far as I know it didn't continue past that generation and it wasn't a standard for Christian life. It is one possibility, however, that Christians can consider doing. But I personally think that economic freedom that allows us to prosper in our work is the best basis for taking care of each other and the poor of society.

There were Christian socialist experiments in America in the 19th century, most of which didn't work out, but some did. It's one option. In that same period of time liberal Christianity also rose up, out of which came Roger Baldwin, the founder of the ACLU, and I think Marx himself got some of his inspiration from his liberal Christian upbringing. He tried to secularize and dogmatize the principles of the first Christian commune but it doesn't work. It always leads to tyranny and murder. Always. Socialism EXCEPT for the rare TOTALLY VOLUNTARY society, is inherently evil.

Faith said...

I read your linked posts, Heather, not carefully I must admit and I may go back again, but my impression is that you are focused on Jesus' teachings on giving, and that has absolutely nothing to do with socialism. It's good to have it emphasized, however, and I think we Christians often fail there, but it's not socialism.

Craig and Heather said...

Faith,

The post keyed off of the quote from the novel.

I do not believe Jesus was a "socialist". Yet I find it interesting that much of His teaching on giving and sharing (minus Him) finds it's way into socialistic thinking. I believe the reason Jesus and His teaching gets attached to govt mandated social programs is that secular socialists are not spiritually minded. They see "take care of physical need" and figure this is the primary message.

The thing is, if we understand that Jesus is referring to Himself and His mission of redemption first, the physical picture (giving, sharing, serving) that He instructed for us to follow makes more sense. We cannot earn a place in heaven but we can physically imitate what Christ has done for us spiritually.

He is the one who gave all of Himself so that we hopelessly naked sinners (helpless, needy) could be clothed with His righteousness before the throne of judgment. He is the Bread that was broken in order to feed starving souls and He is the beloved Son who made it possible for us spiritual orphans to be called children of God.

Does that make sense?

Heather

Craig and Heather said...

Socialism EXCEPT for the rare TOTALLY VOLUNTARY society, is inherently evil.

Well, I suppose I can't convince you otherwise.

But I look at it like this:

If something is good in it's original, God-approved context, it can't be inherently evil. I would tend to say that it is evil when cut-pasted into an artificially beneficial system.

So far as I know, neither satan nor man can create things. We can only distort and pervert that which God intended for good.

I can agree to disagree on this, I suppose.

H

Z said...

H; well put "To tie all this back into our current political situation, I would leave this thought…Perhaps there would be no threat (due to lack of public insistence) of our country’s government morphing into a socialistic mess if God’s children would simply follow His instructions. Share with others, care for the underprivileged, feed the hungry, stop selfishly chasing after worldly trinkets, pray for those who oppose us and humbly serve one another. There would be no platform on which to run if the job is already being handled."

THIS is the job that should be handled voluntarily, yes...following God's word and God's plan. Good job, Heather.

As for the other piece on the man you met on the street, it's a wonderful story and SO fascinating; what a great lesson and what good things you gleaned from it. Thanks for sharing that. It's an important lesson....If we REALLY BELIEVE, how can we do anything but put His kingdom first?

Faith said...

Maybe I did misread you somewhat, Heather, but really I'm still a bit confused about what you think.

Maybe I didn't say clearly enough what is evil about socialism: it's NOT VOLUNTARY. The early Christians voluntarily joined together to support one another. Some communes have done the same since then.

Jesus' commands to give to others have nothing to do with socialism at all. Nothing. We are moved by love of Christ and love of neighbor and especially by the power of the Holy Spirit to give. I see nothing here at all related to socialism.

But socialism as applied by government is not voluntary. You cannot opt out of it, you cannot refuse to pay into it, and whether you like it or not you must give your earnings to support others, and perhaps to support programs that offend your conscience, such as abortion.

Do you still disagree with me now?

Faith said...

Put it another way: The Lord exhorts us to GIVE to others as He Himself gives.

Socialism TAKES from us to give and we are not allowed to exercise our own desire, conscience, compassion in the giving.

This is not GIVING. For a Christian, giving is a voluntary act that springs from love of Christ.

Faith said...

I agree completely that if Christians had been obedient as we should be, the nation would not be in the mess it is in.

Craig and Heather said...

Faith,

I understand what your saying. And I think perhaps my use of the term "socialism" for both instances is messing with you a bit. But I do it because one is just a thin shadow of the other.


What Christ's Kingdom IS, secular socialism tries to be. In a Christian "socialistic" system, individuals under the influence of the Holy spirit do what is right and care for needs. It's voluntary, you're right.

Secular socialism tries to imitate the results apart from God. With no unifying, internal compass directing people, government takes the place of God and an external force must be applied as a substitute conscience in order to get people to move in a desired direction. The removal of God and His guidance is what causes governmentally centralized socialism to become abusive and fail.



If you don't like to use the word socialism for the Christian pattern, I'm fine with that. My point was that the principle of generously caring for the needs of others is God-honoring when retained within the original context.

Christ's way is not evil. But when a society replaces God with human government and tries to fake His provision, evil consequences naturally result.



H

Anonymous said...

I have a cute story, and it's true. Many years ago, during a baseball game, A player named Jesus(pronounced Haysoos) Alou, was in the habit of coming up to the plate and between each swing of the bat, would make the sign of the cross across home plate with his bat before each swing, and take his time doing it.

Needless to say he was up there a rather long time, and the catcher, John Roseboro, said, "why don't you leave God alone and just play baseball"?

I think Roseboro had a good point. We do have something to do with our actions. Perhaps we should own what we do, and give God a break.


Pris

Faith said...
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Faith said...

Yes, Heather, you are misusing the word and that is a big problem. No, one is not a "thin shadow of the other" -- you are missing the point entirely. Coercive "giving" is not giving at all and you cannot compare the two.

Socialism does not describe what Jesus is teaching about giving. For one thing He's talking to individuals, he's not suggesting anything in the form of a collective.

And again, the main difference is not just that the secular world is doing it, it's that it's not voluntary when done by government.

Secularists could certainly form a collective and take care of each other the same way the early church did and that would be a form of socialism that would be voluntary. And please note, they took care OF EACH OTHER, it wasn't about taking care of anyone outside the circle.

I think you are confused and you are confusing the issues.

Faith said...

Pris: What's your point?

Faith said...

Secular socialism tries to imitate the results apart from God. With no unifying, internal compass directing people, government takes the place of God and an external force must be applied as a substitute conscience in order to get people to move in a desired direction. The removal of God and His guidance is what causes governmentally centralized socialism to become abusive and fail.

This is an interesting way to try to put it together and as I said I think Marx was inspired by his liberal Christian upbringing, but there's more wrong with government socialism than just "the removal of God." As I say in the post above, you COULD have a completely secular voluntary socialist society that works fine without the coercion AND without God but government socialism is coercive and in fact it's theft.

God does not compel our behavior in any way. God engages our will to do His will.

Faith said...

Heather: I keep pondering this and I think what you are trying to say is something like this:

Christians have not been sufficiently obeying our Lord's commandments about giving, while at least socialism DOES try to take care of the poor.

That I can agree with. But the Christian calling IS NOT SOCIALISM. Let's not confuse terms.

Elmers Brother said...

I know I've said this befoer but it bears repeating. If you read Arthur Brooks book you'll see that we don't need socialism to be giving. We as a people give more than any other country and he attributes it to our religious values. In fact we outgive socialist countries by a factor of as much as 7 times.

Elmers Brother said...

THis is the name of the book:

Who Really Cares: The Surprising Truth About Compassionate Conservatism

Craig and Heather said...

Christians have not been sufficiently obeying our Lord's commandments about giving, while at least socialism DOES try to take care of the poor.

That I can agree with. But the Christian calling IS NOT SOCIALISM. Let's not confuse terms.


You are misunderstanding me as I did not intend to give anyone the impression that I believe Christians are called to be socialists in the understood sense.


Faith, (and whoever else doesn't get what I'm saying)

Sorry you chafe at my using the term "socialism" for a state of voluntary Christian community. Probably a mistake on my part as I did not realize you'd react so strongly as to have the word itself become the central issue.

I'm not promoting socialism as a national economic/governmental model. I don't approve of forcibly taking someone's stuff in order to redistribute wealth. Nor do I believe that Jesus came to institute some sort of "Christian welfare state".

I'm trying to say that

1. Rebellious man attempts to be god for himself and will steal ideas from God and distort them as he attempts to build his rebellious counter-kingdom.


2. Man that has determined to remove himself from under God's authority is basically a spiritual anarchist, so a socialistic false system of "sharing and caring" requires that a strong govt make people give up stuff so others can have food, clothing, shelter, etc.

3. The physical act of caring for the needy is an individual response to the spiritual reality of Christ having come to provide for His people. Those who cannot see with Spirit-directed vision cannot comprehend the meaning beyond the physical implications of food, shelter, etc. When such a person reads scripture, he often sees "Jesus wants us to form one big community in which everyone is equal and there is no physical lack".

The reality is that Jesus' Kingdom is one of no lack. But for now, it overlaps into this world where there most definitely will be physical hardship. Even while our souls can be full of Him, our bodies just might suffer.



Heather

Craig and Heather said...

we don't need socialism to be giving. We as a people give more than any other country and he attributes it to our religious values. In fact we outgive socialist countries by a factor of as much as 7 times.

I get it.

Honest!

Occasionally, I like to play devil's advocate in order to try to understand why "the opposition" comes to the conclusions it does.

My observations include:


Those who do not have hope beyond this existence are completely unable to comprehend the reality of the spiritual realm. But they often grab at physical pictures as they attempt to blindly "get it right".

Christians who don't yet see the big picture will often become confused by godless man's attempts at imitating God's truth. And undiscerning believers can fall into the trap of thinking we are supposed to be busy eradicating poverty, disease and physical hardship.

I've often considered Jesus' words when He rebuked those who grumbled about the woman "wasting" her vial of spikenard on His feet.

For you have the poor with you always, and whenever you desire you may do them good. But you do not have Me always.
Mark 14:7



That does not even remotely suggest to me that Jesus wants His followers to put our energy and resources into building a communistic society. It might even look as though He doesn't care much about the plight of the poor.

But, the implication to me is that the continual presence of poor and hurting people will assure believers in all ages of ample opportunity to serve Christ by (individually and sometimes corporately) selflessly serving others who have no ability to pay us back for our "good deeds".

Caring for the needy is the physical picture of God coming down to helpless humanity to serve and care for us wretches who are unable to pull ourselves out of the ash-heap. The church continues to play her role as a living portrait of Christ's love for the world to see that He is indeed alive and His presence is with us even today.

Sadly, much of the American church has gotten sidetracked by health and wealth teaching, building of mega-churches, internalized weekly programs and entertaining side-shows on Sunday morning.



Heather

Faith said...
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Faith said...

OK, apparently I totally misunderstood you, Heather.

You quoted the Sermon on the Mount at your blog in this connection, which has nothing to do with socialism, and you ALSO referred to the mutual support community of the early church -- which also has nothing to do with socialism unless you are very very careful to distinguish its voluntary nature from what the word applies to today, and I wouldn't use the word at all to describe the early church's community -- and between the two I got very confused. You refer to "caring for people" and now you say you are talking about what the "opposition" takes that to mean.

Perhaps we agree in the end about what you are trying to say -- but I do have to say I'm not completely sure. I'm just going to give up.

Craig and Heather said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Craig and Heather said...

No worries, Faith.

You're definitely not the first person I've confused.

I should have been more aware of how my use of "socialism" could affect readers of this blog. I forget how polarizing this term can be.

Distilling my swamp of thoughts down to:

Socialism is not an "original" concept. It is, at best, a misapplication of Christ's teaching and, to a more extreme degree, a God-rejecting, demonic perversion of a beautiful spiritual truth concerning the generosity and compassion of our Lord Jesus toward us beggars.

I do not believe Jesus was teaching His disciples how to be socialists. Actually, the Sermon is my current blog project and you're welcome to browse my online notes if you are concerned that my view is anti-biblical. I'm open to correction and constructive feedback.

Heather

Faith said...
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Faith said...

Heather, you can't just define words to suit yourself and that seems to be what you are doing with "socialism." I don’t think this is just a problem with how we at this blog understand socialism, I think you are misusing the concept.

Socialism is not an "original" concept. It is, at best, a misapplication of Christ's teaching and, to a more extreme degree, a God-rejecting, demonic perversion of a beautiful spiritual truth concerning the generosity and compassion of our Lord Jesus toward us beggars.

You are apparently trying to say that socialism is an intentional appropriation of Christ's teaching to a secular application, and I think there's something to that. But that doesn’t make Christ’s teaching itself socialism though you seem to say that at times.

You yourself do apply the term to the early church's voluntary sharing of resources. You objected when I called socialism evil because you think the term describes what they were doing. It does not. I can agree that socialism may be a misappropriation of some Christian teaching and practices, but it is NOT right to call the Christian teaching and practices "socialism."

I do not believe Jesus was teaching His disciples how to be socialists.

Well, but you did at times equate Christian practices with socialism, so you haven’t consistently been saying that socialism misappropriates these practices, you’ve been saying at other times that the teaching on giving and the sharing community ARE socialism.

I'm sure I'll come look at your blog eventually.


=====================
Wikipedia: Socialism is an economic and political theory based on public ownership or common ownership and cooperative management of the means of production and allocation of resources.

Craig and Heather said...

Faith,


I acknowledged that godless government-mandated socialism has tried to mimic biblical truth. I never meant for anyone to think that I equate the two.

I am not redefining socialism to suit my personal fancy. I am using the exact same definition you quoted.

Wikipedia: Socialism is an economic and political theory based on public ownership or common ownership and cooperative management of the means of production and allocation of resources.

Please explain how the above definition does not fit what the early church apparently practiced, voluntarily, on a small scale.

And please point out what is inherently evil about sharing and cooperating as a community.

I see nothing to indicate that the given definition that we are both referencing requires that the concept of "socialism" must be considered evil in and of itself.

When socialism is put into practice by human beings who do not cling to God's very Being as the ultimate standard of right and wrong, evil is unavoidable within such a system. But, the same can be true of capitalism as well. Democracy can degrade into anarchy when every man's supposedly equal voice is not subject to a higher authority.

Again, I'm not advocating for socialism as we know it. There is too much historical fact backing the reality of horrific failure when the basic concept of socialism (see your definition) is attempted within a society in which a large portion of the population is unregenerate.

The basic concept of socialism is theoretically possible when people are united in purpose by the Holy Spirit.

People who don't listen to God will mess up even the most perfect of governmental systems.


No pressure to read my stuff. Just thought it might offer a bit of info concerning what I believe.

Heather

Z said...

Isn't the whole point SOCIALISM being put UPON the people (as we see happening with redistribution in our country now, etc..forcible taking from those who have to give to those who haven't) versus Socialism as Heather(and I)'d described earlier...people helping others because they WANT to...?

Faith said...

I am not redefining socialism to suit my personal fancy. I am using the exact same definition you quoted.

Wikipedia: Socialism is an economic and political theory based on public ownership or common ownership and cooperative management of the means of production and allocation of resources.

Please explain how the above definition does not fit what the early church apparently practiced, voluntarily, on a small scale.


1. It had absolutely nothing to do with "an economic and political theory."

2. It has nothing to do with the "means of production."

3. I'm not sure "cooperative management" is part of the picture either.

4. Or that "cooperative management of ... allocation of resources" applies.

5. About the only similarity is in the "common ownership" part of the definition.

Acts 2:44-45 And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.

It's easy to see how Marx, and other forms of socialism, appropriated this idea, but since for them it's a theory and it's not voluntary and it's managed by government, it isn't right to call the church model by the same name. The political theory is socialism.

And please point out what is inherently evil about sharing and cooperating as a community.

I already made it clear that sharing and cooperating as a community is a valid choice people may make voluntarily, but that socialism is evil.

I see nothing to indicate that the given definition that we are both referencing requires that the concept of "socialism" must be considered evil in and of itself.

I believe that is because you are misusing the word.

Faith said...

Perhaps I missed that discussion, z, but apparently I simply disagree with the use of the term "socialism" to describe anything that is voluntary, and I believe the Wikipedia definition refers only to the political system which we know is coercive and not voluntary.

Faith said...

To use the term "socialism" to refer to "helping others because you WANT to" is apparently what has made a chaotic mess of this discussion from the beginning. That is not socialism and to use the term that way is to fall for leftist thinking anyway. THEY think all socialism is doing is helping people. NO, it's stealing, it's tyranny, it's coercion, it's ultimately murder. That is what socialism IS. Helping and giving and sharing and cooperating should never be muddied by that term.

Craig and Heather said...

Z said:

Isn't the whole point SOCIALISM being put UPON the people (as we see happening with redistribution in our country now, etc..forcible taking from those who have to give to those who haven't) versus Socialism as Heather(and I)'d described earlier...people helping others because they WANT to...?

Z, I probably should have just pointed Faith back to your comment. You seem to have a good grasp of what I've been saying.

Faith, the early church didn't simply kick around a theory about sharing and community. They lived it. You don't believe the record indicates that they cooperatively managed their pooled resources? It doesn't say they didn't work together.

I asked you to explain from the definition you offered what is inherently (naturally built into the concept) evil about socialism.

There is nothing in the given definition about forcing anyone to do anything. Marx's name isn't in there, either.

it isn't right to call the church model by the same name. The political theory is socialism.

Most Christians believe the Church practices some form of government. Along with individual, family and civil government, it is one of four spheres of government within our society.

I'm afraid we're talking past each other here. I do apologize for not thinking about how you might react to my use of the word "socialism".

Can't help being amused, though as I'm reasonably sure I could make the same comments I've made here on some rabidly liberal socialist's site and I'd be blasted for something like being an intolerant religious bigot that blames society's problems on man's inherently sinful nature instead of capitalism.

Ah well. Ya can't win em all, I guess. :)

Take care.

H

Faith said...

Faith, the early church didn't simply kick around a theory about sharing and community. They lived it.

Huh? THAT is an answer to ME???

You don't believe the record indicates that they cooperatively managed their pooled resources? It doesn't say they didn't work together.

Huh?

It says they shared their POSSESSIONS.

PERIOD.

I do now completely GIVE UP. Good grief!

Craig and Heather said...

It says they shared their POSSESSIONS.

Possessions can qualify as resources.
Dictionary definition:

resource: n.
1. something to which one can turn for help or support or to achieve one's purpose (this can include money, personal possessions--even God Himself and can be involved in what I see as localized "Christian socialism")
2. a means of relaxation or amusement
3. ingenuity; quick wit
4. available assets; as source of wealth to a country (I believe this is specifically the definition you use--and rightly so, when applied to nationwide socialization, which I also reject as a healthy possibility)

Wish we could have come to an understanding on this. It isn't my intention to act as a burr under your saddle.




I'll go play in my own sandbox, now.

H

Faith said...
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Faith said...

Heather, a dictionary definition isn't going to deal with this. Context and commentaries on that passage make it possessions as in "things," and you can't force another meaning by trotting out a dictionary definition.

Back at your sandbox you write some good stuff about your experiences. I appreciated your encounter with the apparently homeless man and your experience of being led by God to help him out.

You aren't so good with the logic and the analyses.

Faith said...

I guess if I'm going to give up I should give up. But I went and looked up some commentaries on Acts 2:44 and 4:32:

=======
And had all things common - Perhaps this has not been well understood. At all the public religious feasts in Jerusalem, there was a sort of community of goods. No man at such times hired houses or beds in Jerusalem; all were lent gratis by the owners: Yoma, fol. 12. Megill. fol. 26. The same may be well supposed of their ovens, cauldrons, tables, spits, and other utensils. Also, provisions of water were made for them at the public expense; Shekalim, cap. 9. See Lightfoot here. Therefore a sort of community of goods was no strange thing at Jerusalem, at such times as these. It appears, however, that this community of goods was carried farther; for we are informed, Ac 2:45, that they sold their possessions and their goods, and parted them to all, as every man had need. But, this probably means that, as in consequence of this remarkable outpouring of the Spirit of God; and their conversion, they were detained longer at Jerusalem than they had originally intended, they formed a kind of community for the time being, that none might suffer want on the present occasion; as no doubt the unbelieving Jews, who were mockers, Ac 2:13, would treat these new converts with the most marked disapprobation. That an absolute community of goods never obtained in the Church at Jerusalem, unless for a very short time, is evident from the apostolical precept, 1Co 16:1, etc., by which collections were ordered to be made for the poor; but, if there had been a community of goods in the Church, there could have been no ground for such recommendations as these, as there could have been no such distinction as rich and poor, if every one, on entering the Church, gave up all his goods to a common stock. Besides, while this sort of community lasted at Jerusalem, it does not appear to have been imperious upon any; persons might or might not thus dispose of their goods, as we learn front the case of Ananias, Ac 5:4. Nor does it appear that what was done at Jerusalem at this time obtained in any other branch of the Christian Church; and in this, and in the fifth chap., where it is mentioned, it is neither praised nor blamed. We may therefore safely infer, it was something that was done at this time, on this occasion, through some local necessity, which the circumstances of the infant Church at Jerusalem might render expedient for that place and on that occasion only. –- Clarke

=====
and had all things common: that is, their worldly goods, their possessions and estates; no man called anything peculiarly his own; and whatever he had, his brother was welcome to, and might as freely take, and use it, as if it was his own.
-–John Gill

=====
3. (44-45) Their close hearts and sharing in the common life of Jesus.

Now all who believed were together, and had all things in common, and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need.

a. Now all who believed were together, and had all things in common: With the influx of more that 3,000 believers, most of whom stayed in Jerusalem and didn’t have jobs, the family of Christians had to share if they were to survive.

i. We shouldn’t regard this as “early communism,” because it was voluntary, temporary, and flawed to the extent that the church in Jerusalem was in continual need of financial support from other churches. Also, we don’t have any evidence this continued very long.

b. The Jews had a tremendous custom of hospitality during any major feast like Pentecost; all visitors were received into private homes, and no one could charge for giving a bed or a room to a visitor or for supplying their basic needs. The Christians took this tremendous feast-time hospitality and made it an everyday thing.

c. Sold their possessions and their goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need: The power of God is evident here because Jesus became much more important to them than their possessions.
--David Guzik

Craig and Heather said...

Faith, I appreciate your concern for me.

I don't disagree with the commentary you cited. As I said, we are not connecting well on this. There's a lot more to my view than simple redistribution of goods and I don't believe (most) Christians are called to live in communes.



I was aware of the poverty of the Jerusalem church and it wouldn't surprise me at all if the Lord arranged for this so other churches could practice self-sacrificial kindness toward their brethren.

We don't know each other, so it's probably going to be pretty nearly impossible for me to explain how the Lord dumped me on my face specifically over my worry about a potential national socialism and some instances of personal idolatry and I cannot go back to my previous view that "socialism" = bad and "capitalism" = good.

To me, it's no longer that simple. I really wish you'd give me the benefit of the doubt on this. But I can't force you to see what I see.

Heather

Craig and Heather said...

You aren't so good with the logic and the analyses.



Tell you what. I'll be the official Wearer of the DUNCE Cap around here.

But you need to remember that I earned it and don't feel motivated to share it at this time. We'll have none of this socialistic nonsense of robbing from the rich in order to redistribute the wealth to someone you might feel is more deserving.

;)

Heather

Z said...

Ladies, as you know, the 'victory' is always His...in any of it...we all have our opinions and I do want to thank you so much for the stimulating exchange! VERY stimulating.

thanks VERY much..

Faith said...
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Faith said...
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Faith said...

Sorry, Z, sorry, Heather, can't resist another comment.

Heather: The Lord's dealing with you about your worries over socialism does NOT mean He's saying socialism is GOOD. He's merely pointing out something in your own personal spiritual life that He wants you to learn and your fear of a socialist regime brought it out. He took you to an understanding of His teaching on selflessness and giving, but that does not mean socialism represents that, it merely means that your fear of it involved a clinging to your possessions, as you yourself wrote. It's a personal lesson for you, not a revelation of the goodness of socialism.

I also thought at the time I read your description of that experience that the Lord may also be indicating that we might all have to come under a socialist government as the nation comes under judgment, and the church comes under persecution -- so He's teaching dependence on Him as a cure for fear in such a situation. Which was also part of the lesson you learned, as you also wrote.

As the Rumanian pastor Josef Tson says, who suffered for his faith under Ceaucescu, //the rest of the world doesn't wonder when the Great Tribulation is coming, they wonder when AMERICA will go through it// --since they have already been through it, many times over in some cases.

It may be our turn soon. But far from making socialism a good thing that clearly makes it a bad thing, an instrument of judgment we will have to learn to bear.

The meaning of your encounter with the Lord may extend beyond its personal meaning for you to a prophecy of sorts about what's coming. Maybe. In any case, there is NOTHING GOOD about socialism.

Faith said...

By the way, Josef Tson is a good one to hear for strengthening dependence on the Lord in hard times. Here he is on You Tube.