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Our Lord Jesus Christ loves you.
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1  Entertainment / Television / Re:Joan of Arcadia on: December 22, 2003, 10:15:25 AM
I fully respect your position.  I simply have a different take on in it and that's what adds flavor to life.  It's be pretty boring if we all agreed on everything.  The only time I get a little upset is when others want to take shows like this off when I really like it.  

As far as the cussing .... I don't have a big problem with that.  I'm not condoning it in any way, but I do accept that it is part of our society.  If you've been to high school lately, you will see how prevolent it is.  I remember in HS cussing like sailors.  It's not right, but its a fact.  Word/phrases/cuss words change with the times.  It's the language of the day.  I guess I just have a different tolerance for it.  Yeah, I do have a problem with my 2 year old and 5 year old hearing it and we do not use it in this house (although you should have heard me cuss 5/10 years ago).  We too have to watch what we watch on TV.  But so far JOA has kept it to a low count and I'm ok so far.  Just enough spice of the english language to keep it 'real' (as some would say).  As long as they don't have God cuss, then I'm cool.

As far as the Koran/Bible ... I agree with you.  It is a distorted view.  In a very literal sense, it is the same God.  They both worship the God of Abraham, but you and I know that this is where the similarities end.  I think they did that to 1) show that this God is not of anyone religion 2) just to get people thinking about God in a bigger sense.  I'm kind of ok with that.  I don't want to get hung up on this since I realize that this is not a Christian show.  It is a show about 'God' and how He interelates in our lives.  It is not and end-all and in know why defines our complete relationship with Him.  But if someone's been struggling with why doesn't God do miracles in their life ... then I think the explaination on the play ground with God as a little girl was perfect.  Some of their explainations to some of the big problems are very good and very Christian (without the 'Christ).  It gives a perfect inroad to talking about Christ.  I can say ... "You know then they said this ... well 'this' is what they really mean.  they just aren't talking about Christ in person, but this is what it refers to" or something like that.  So yeah, when you say you use it as a comparasion, I can see that.  But I don't use it as a complete opposite contrast.  I tell people that they're close, and then reveal the mystery to them.  Paul talks about feeding them like babies.  Many are not ready for meat, and we must be patient and feed them the bottle.  I see this as teh bottle vs other shows that are nothing at all.  I'll use this bottle for now and I pray for it's success.  If this show is successful, then maybe other shows about God (in good taste) will be created for prime-time.  Other shows have danced around God, but this one is kind of in your face about it.  Very cool.  So many shows do not get you to really think about your existance and purpose.  This show does.  If it gets some to think, then I say "praise God".  That is the first step to salvation.

Grace and Peace and Love to you all.
2  Entertainment / Television / Re:Joan of Arcadia on: December 21, 2003, 01:42:20 AM
I really like this show.  It has become one of my favorite shows on TV and I look forward to Friday nights.  I have been taping the shows and am going to use them in my Sunday night Sr. High classes.  I think they have awesome Christian lessons in there and they are presented in very unique poweful ways.  Except for the first show when "God" alludes that he is the "God" of many religions, I have not seen anything that contradicts Christianity.  If anything, I have seen it present God in very practical, useful ways.  

We have seen lessons of ...
1) God's timing
2) We are to look out for our neighbor
3) We don't always understand what God asks us to do and we don't always see the ramifications of obedience till later
4) Why God does not answer all prayers in the affirmative
5) and many others

We have seen these presented (I would argue) from as a God of Christianty would want them presented.  I absolutely love this show.  I love the Christian lessons taught and I love the way they are presented.  There is only one thing lacking .... Christ.  Please don't get me wrong and I am not downplaying this at all.  Christ is the central figure in our beliefs.  Without Christ ... we are still lost and running in vain.  

But know this ... there are many people that don't believe they need a savior and/or don't believe in God.  We have shows that preach Jesus all over ... they come on every Sunday morning.  The people this show is intended to reach are the one who do not watch on Sunday.  This is called meeting them where they are at.  If they don't believe in God or know some of the basic ideas, it is very hard sometimes to preach Jesus.  Jesus was preach early in Christian history to people who already accepted there was a God.  We don't always find that now.

So, we give them God, and His primary lessons.  I believe a show like this will open so many doors to so many people.  It gets them thinking about God, where they wouldn't have before.  This will lead them to the next step because I truly believe God will work in their hearts through this show.   Some may say ... well the show should preach salvation and Jesus.  I can understand that.  But do you think these same people will watch it?  I don't think so.  That in turn will defeat the purpose of trying to reach this particular group.  

I have also stated before that this give a very low key introduction to converse to people about God without putting them on the defensive.  I say stuff like "What did you think about God asking Joan to live up to her potential?"  It sparks non-confrontational conversations.  I understand that some do not care and they think that we should be up in everyone's face with the cold hard reality of the facts.  That's not my style.  I like to meet them where they are at and be patient with them.  God was patient with me and God calls me to be patient with them.  I may plant the seeds ... I may water ... but I leave the growing up to God and I'm comfortable with that.

Look at the positives my brothers and sisters.  God works in amazing ways with all kinds of things.  I will take a show like this over 95% of what's on tv any day of the week.

Just my 2 cents.

Grace and Peace and Love to you all.
3  Entertainment / Movies / Re:Matrix: Revolutions on: November 10, 2003, 10:41:32 PM
I've never been a big fan of Gospel gimmicks. It just isn't my thing.
I can understand that.  Each person has to follow their own convictions.  I just like the way Jesus and Paul used everyday things to explain what heaven was like or what it mean to be a follower of Jesus.  I have found it beneficial to follow that example.  I've worked with youth (mostly 9th through 12th graders) for years and I often have to relate the Gospel in ways that they can comprehend.  

The great thing is that God gives us a mulitude of tools to work with and then we get to pick and choose according to our ministries.  I was just wanting to point out that I have used some of these tools and wanted to give an example of how some of us have benefited from them.

4  Entertainment / Movies / Re:Matrix: Revolutions on: November 10, 2003, 05:01:03 PM
I would like to submit for your consideration ...

Using tv shows (ie Joan of Arcadia) and movies (ie Matrix) can be a very powerful tool in spreading the Gospel.  We have precedents for this through out the NT.  The Gospel was constantly explained in ways that the unbelievers could understand and relate to.  

Yes, I love the first one also.  It was so mind blowing in regards to both plot and graphics.  It was the ultimate eye candy that totally engaged the mind.  It will be a long time before we see something as engaging as this was.  

But through this, we were able to explain the Gospel in terms that others could understand.  We would tell them that they are born into bondage of sin just like the matrix and that what we see is not the real world.  It's not the way things are suppose to be.  Then after being freed, we want to free others.  How do you convince someone they are living in a fairy tale?  It's almost impossible to do.

Now ... what about the 3rd?  Can this also be used to explain the Gospel in new ways? Most definately.  There's so much language dealing with faith, love and choice.  Especially compelling is the dialog at the end with the Oracle.  I don't mean to express heresy, but I believe Neo was meant to be a Christ-like figure.  The imagery and language was very obvious.  This is not being sacraligious either.  It's just a different way to spread the Gospel, we should go with that.  Neo had to die in order to set everyone free.  Now that Neo has died, the rest of the people can be saved by just asking.  It no longer is going to take work, and for someone to intervene on our behalf.  Everyone has a free choice now.

Is this the exact Gospel?  Not really.  There are a lot of doctrines that Christians still debate today.  But I still believe that we can use this movie to bring the Gospel to new people in new ways.  Everyone's going to watching the movie.  This is a great time to use these conversations to explain spiritual matters in ways that they might be able to understand.

Just my 2 cents.

Grace and Peace to you all.
5  Fellowship / You name it!! / Re:E- VANGELISM - ANY IDEAS ? on: November 08, 2003, 02:58:13 PM
I would also like to give a small word of warning.  Just be aware of who you are talking to and how the conversation is going.  There will be some people who will ask you questions (particularily in the OT) that is meant to be leading questions for them to lead you to a conclusion instead of the other way around.  Just use discernment.  Some will act like they want to know, but they are really playing with you.  I'm not saying all.  I'm not even saying most.  But some.  Just be aware of the conversation and pay attention to determine the intention of the person on the other side.  If you are solid in your faith, you should be ok, but we should always be aware of what others are trying to get us to think.

6  Fellowship / You name it!! / Re:Purpose Driven Life on: November 07, 2003, 05:26:49 PM
It's a very intersting book.  It's a devotional.  You are meant to read on chapter (only 3-4 pages) each day and meditate on that idea.  I enjoyed it and would recommend it if you do not have a current devotional.  It's only 40 days, and I would recommend you do not read it all at once.  You are not meant to.  You are to take one idea and meditate on it, then the next day ... the next.  It is not meant to be read like a novel.

Anyways ... enjoy.

7  Entertainment / Movies / Re:Matrix: Revolutions on: November 07, 2003, 04:59:18 PM
I don't think this movie is perfect analogous to Christianity and didn't mean to imply such.  At different times, some of the Characters can take on different parts.  Maybe I did stretch a little on analogy of Christ starting His mission at 30 to be analogous with Neo not realizing who he was until late.  I still think Neo takes on Christ-Like, Messaih-Like, Savour-Like role in the movie.  (on a side note, not all Christians believe Christ knew who he was 'fully' His whole life).  

"I" definately see many Christian undertones in this movie, as in the first.  As you watch it, think about what I've said and see how much of a stretch it is.  As far as Neo being an idiot, you may make that case, but he was dealing with some pretty incredible stuff.  He whole world-view was totally blown.  I think I would be a little stupid also to be in his shoes.

8  Entertainment / Movies / Re:Matrix: Revolutions on: November 07, 2003, 03:31:07 PM
On a scale from one to 10, I would say a 6.5 - 7 right now.  I'm still trying to assimulate it all, so this number might change.  If you've seen the first two, it's definately a  must see.
9  Entertainment / Movies / Re:Matrix: Revolutions on: November 07, 2003, 09:30:08 AM
Spoiler ..... Spoiler ..... Spoiler ..... Spoiler ..... Spoiler .....  
Don't read if you don't want to know what happens in the movie.

You can take almost anymovie and inject your philosphy into.  Some are easier than others.  That's why movies touch each of us differently.  I am not alone in thinking the first one was very analogous to Christianity.  "The One" ... "Trinity" ... "Freed from Slavery" ..."Zion"... etc.  The first one really rocked my world.  The second one left me wanting ... and it was kind of meant that way.  It was really meant to be part of a larger whole which included the third.  That is another reason it came out so soon.

Now ... onto 3 which I saw yesterday.

I am not done trying to figure out what I think about it.  Like the first 2, it take time and discussion to start delving into the finer points.  I will say that at first I was left without a sense of closer.  I still had questions like ....
1) How was Agent Smith able to cross from the matrix to real life?
2) How Neo got his powers to affect the real world.
3) Where does the story go from here.  We are left with people in the matrix and people outside?
4) there are a few other questions as well.
But as I thought about it more, I can see more clearly what it was about.

I think all of these have answers.  But they are not plainly given.  I also think that many of these answers are left kind of open to interpretation, because they are not spelled out.

Here's a possible explaination submitted for your approval.  Tell me what you think.

Using Christianity as a model ....
Neo is Christ, Smith is death.  
Smith is spreading across the matrix ... this can represent spiritual death since they are sill the same person (as seen at the end when they revert back), but they are seperated from anything that can be interacted with.
Neo as Christ ... doesn't realize who he is or is purpose until he gets older.  Christ didn't start his ministry until age of 30.
Until the final battle with Neo/Smith, It took a lot of work to be freed from the matrix (sin), you had to have someone intercede for you (morpheus/Levites) to free you (forgive your sin).  Then comes Neo (Christ) who lives for a while in our world.  He consults with the oracle (possible the Holy Spirit) for advice.  He realizes that he has to go to Machine City (possibly Hell).  He doesn't want to, but he is obedient so that mankind can be freed.  He fights death, and could win, but gives in, in the end.  Jesus died for us willingly.  I don't understand all the dialog at this point, and I'm not sure how Neo did it, but what we know is that he overcame Agent Smith (spiritual death and/or physical death) and destroyed all of Smith all over the world.  It leaves us in confusion at the end whether Neo is dead or not, so it's hard to draw anymore analogies here.

But, the nature of things has changed according to the conversation between the Oracle (possibly the Holy Spirit) and the Architect (possible God).  No longer will people have to work to get out of the Matrix (free from the Law).  No longer will they need someone to free them (intercede for their sins).  We are told that those who want to leave, will be free to do so.  It's sort of like being in Jail and someone comes along and opens the cell door and says everyone is free to leave who wants to.  Now this is the state of OUR world we are in today.  Christ has done it all.  We can be freed from our sin (freed from the matrix), by simply asking now.

Another Observation: It was very plain that they were trying to paint Neo as a Christ figure.  Everywhere from openly calling him 'Savior' many times, to the point where he is in a crucifix position at the end of the movie.

Well, I'll stop here.  This is just a first quick draft based on how I'm feeling about the movie now.  I'm sure as I read some of your interpretations, I may find that I am totally off.  I also need to see the movie again to pick up on what I missed the second time.  I would appreciate to hear what yall thought, as well as if you think my interpretation holds any water.
10  Fellowship / You name it!! / Re:Four more days of vacation...and counting! on: November 06, 2003, 02:42:40 PM
What should I do with it?

Here are a couple of ideas ...
1) If you are in a realationship, suprise them with a night out to dinner and a movie.
2) If you have kids, pack a lunch and head to the park for a picnic
3) If you are alone ... go see the Matrix Reloaded.  Wink (That's where I'll be in about 1 hour).
4) Write a letter to a friend you have not spoken to in some time.
5) Write an encouraging email to your pastor telling them how much you appreciate what they are doing.
6) Invite a friend to play a game of basketball, or to just throw the football.
7) Clean up the house and the yard.
Cool Read a book you've been meaning to .
9) Just sit outside in a rocking chair and breath in life for a short time.
10) Spend some quality time with someone special.

Well, I gotta go see a movie.

Grace and Peace and Love to you.
11  Fellowship / You name it!! / Re:Truth on: November 06, 2003, 12:57:55 AM
Sorry to hit and run, but I'm not looking to join another thread.  I just wanted to point out something for consideration.  If it works for you, then great.

Isn't there something in the NT about eating meat sacrificed to idols or something.  It says (if I remember correctly), that it's really ok, because we're not under law.  As long as we are not concentrating in the idol part, but are just eating then we're ok (also as long as we are not being a stumbling block to our brother).

What I get from this, is that motive can play a big role.  We cannot go around all the time looking in our culture at who makes "what" and what was the original 'intent' on something in particular.  I frankly don't have the time, and don't care.  If God convicts me to stop doing something ... I stop.  and Vice-versa.  I celebrate the birth of Christ.  I know full well how it started ... and I don't care.  It doesn't mean that to me.  Yes, I have a tree and we decorate it as a family.  My tree holds no identification of Christ.  I recognize that.  We pass out presents and I really don't identify it with the 3 wise men.  There are several things I do, because it gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside.  I enjoy the special time with my family.  But, I hold that day very reverently.  I am absolutely aware that Christ was not born on this day.  I don't care.  This is simply the day I have set apart to celebrate His birth.  Yes, I celebrate it.  It was a miracle.  It was my personal Savior taking on the body of man and I am eternally gratefull.  It is simply a day I have set aside to remember what He had to give up to become man and for me to thank Him for doing this to me.  Yeah, I do a lot of other stuff on the side, but I know full well what this day represents.

Was it a pagan holiday?  I don't care.  Are their pagan symbols in this holiday?  I don't care.  It does not mean that to me.  I see Christ.  My eyes are on Him.  I celebrate Him everyday of my life.  This just happens to be one where I throw a physical celebration in a different format.  I'm ok with it.

I have prayed about this, and I do not feel convicted to stop it.  If you feel convicted, then you should stop.  If you feel convicted to tell others, then you should.  But you should fully recognize the not everyone is being convicted to stop celebrating Christmas and this does not mean that we are not Christians.  

Let's not break fellowship over this and recognize that we are at different places in our walk.  

Grace and Peace and Love to you.
12  Fellowship / You name it!! / Re:What kind of blessing would you leave behind? on: November 06, 2003, 12:39:35 AM
Here is something I have done.  I have several letters that I have written to be opened upon my death.  One is to my wife, one to my kids, one to my youth at church, one to my men's group I go to, and a few others.  When I die, I want them to know once more what they meant to me, and to pass on a few pieces of advice.

Think about it, what would it mean to your spouse to have a letter after you died.  How about your kids?  Do you think they would keep that letter for the rest of their lives?

This is just my advice.  Yeah, it's interesting to write a blessing here, but invest some time, write a letter(s) and put them up to be opened upon your death.  Every couple of years, get them and rewrite them.  That will be a true blessing you will leave them.

Grace and Peace and Love to you.
13  Fellowship / You name it!! / Re:E- VANGELISM - ANY IDEAS ? on: November 06, 2003, 12:34:05 AM

I want to commend you first on asking.  Too often I have seen Christians just jump in without really thinking about what they are getting into.

First and foremost, Prayer is needed.  I have a test I always run before I do anything.  I ask myself "What is my motive?"  Is this something I want to do, or is this something God is laying on my heart.  My first impression is that this could be something you are being led to do.  But continue to pray about it.  God will usually give you a passion along with the ministry He is calling you into.  If you are doing this because "you" would like to do it, that might be the wrong reason.  Check your motive.  If it is of God, and pure, then I would say proceed to the next step.

If someone wanted to go to ... say ... to Ghana to be a missionary.  What would we do?  Would we just put him on a plane and say "see ya later?"  ... No.  Mission work involves a certain amount of training.  Let me explain better.  Some will say "That's not true, we are in the mission field every day of our lives."  I would agree 100% with this statement.  But what you are outlining is different.  It is not just simply living your life and showing Christ through your actions and letting Him come up in casual conversation.  You are talking about a purposeful, targeted ministry.  I believe to be successful, you have started on the right path.  Inquire to what others have done.  Gain knowledge so that you may succeed where others have failed.  Find resources out there and educate yourself.  God asks us to prepare ourselves and He will guide us as we seek His will.

Let me give you a few other peices of advice.  Take it as you will ....
1) Don't use hit and run tactics.  Don't jump into a board and post a bunch of "repent or go to hell" posts.  That does not show Christ and it NEVER NEVER NEVER works.
2) Read the threads and refrain from posting for the first week.  Learn (by reading) who the people are, there, and gleen what they believe.  Identify the hostiles and those that are peaceful.  Learn the lay of the land, before you ever post your first post.
3) Join one board at a time.  Invest time there.  If you join too many boards, you will find yourself pulled in too many directions.  If this is going to be a long term ministry, join a board for say 2-3 months before moving on.  Sharing Christ is about building relationships.  This cannot happen overnight.
4) Which leads me to ... make friends.  Take time to get to know them.  Do not off handidly dismiss their ideas.  And do not 'force' your ideas on them.  As they get to know you, let them ask you questions.  Don't preach "at" them, but listen and discuss "with" them.  You don't have any right to ask them about their relationship with God and judge if it is healthy if you know nothing about them.
5) Which leads me to .... be very patient.  You don't know them and you will not understand some things they say.  You may assume one person hates God just because he wants to live an immoral life, but then later find that his mother is dying and withering away as he watches.  You may find that even though he doesn't admit it, he is really just gotcha8ed off at God.  Everyone is dealing with crap in their lives.  Everyone.  Be gentle and patient.  Get to know them.  But, do not push too hard.  Let them come to you.  If you are kind, and peaceful, and honest, and your  motives are pure, they will come.  Let God use you.
6) Which leads me to one of the most important points ... Show love ..... always!!!  If you join a board and someone says that you are #$@%@ who deserves to die.  You will find some that call you incredible names and question your integrity, your salvation, God, your morals, etc.  They may do it in the meanest possible way.  You must make your mind up NOW,  ahead of time, how you will react.  The great thing about boards, is that you can re-read your message and edit out the parts that are sarcastic and mean.  Show love all the time.  Think of their rants as waves beating against the shore.  I went to Hawaii on business this spring.  I noticed they had breakers put up along the beaches to protect the swimmers and calm the ocean (in that small place).  Think of yourself as the breaker.  Let them come at you. And Come. And come. And Come.  You take it and NEVER attack back.  You show love that can only come from Christ.  That is how you witness.  Anyone can attack.  You will not be unique if you do that.  But we are called to be different, to be Holy, set apart.  Show love ... always.  I'm asking you to be the calming spirit there.  Even if you are the only one.
7) Remember that you cannot convert anyone.  I don't know if anyone has ever told you that.  But it is completely impossible for you to convert anyone.  You are powerless.  You are a tool in God's hand.  He may use you to impart information and to help remove stumbling blocks, but it is God that is using you, it is God that is convicting them, and it is God doing everything in the middle.  Go into the board with the attitude of making friends and "sharing" Christ.  If someone comes to know Christ, then Glory to God, but you have no power in that.  Concentrate on your part and leave God's part to Him.  Trust me, if God's hand is in this, He will be convicting the unbeliever.  Trust that God is doing His part.
Cool  Don't always discuss stuff out in the open.  Let people know that they can feel free to talk to you in private via PM.  This isn't about a public forum all the time.  Sometimes people just need to be alone with you.  Some stuff is too private to tell the world.
9)  Just be a friend.  I've mentioned this before, but it is important.  I'm not talking about a phoney friend, motivated by "converting".  People are smart, they'll pick up on that.  I'm saying be their friend whether they come to know Christ or not.  You should not hinge your friendship on the qualification that they come to Christ.  Accept them where they are at.  You be you, and let them feel that they can be themselves without fear of being judged by you.  As they become at ease with you, and see that you are not being phony, and that you are going to be on their board for more than a few days, they may start to let their guard down and let you in a little.  Take it easy, and be real.  Never be fake.  These are real people with real feelings.  Be careful.  You would not want someone to fake a friendship with you and then trounce on it when you let your guard down.  Think about what you are saying and be gentle as you would someone you truly care about.
10) BEWARE!!!!!!  If you are going to a hostile board to Christianity ... beware.  First, be prepared to be attacked.  These people are not stupid and have seen the likes of us many times.  They are prepared for any subject and they have worked out answers ahead of time.  They have a very thought out world view and you will not change that with a few posts, or a few hundred posts and probably not with a thousand posts.  Unless God is calling there, I wouldn't go.  It will be very negative ... all the time.  I would make sure you are rock solid in your faith.  Some will play nice and some will not.  They all have one motive in mind though ... to "deconvert" you.  They will pull out every trick in the book. Be prepared for the attempt to be deconverted.  Some are very sly and tricky.  But have your guard up.  The problem is that it will be hard to make friends with your guard up.  This is the hardest of places to witness.  Many have gone to church in the past and many can argue the Bible with the best of them.  Of course their interpretations are always twisted, but to the uneducated Christian, it can be confusing.  Again ... if you're going here ... know your stuff and watch your back.  Also be aware that many here will not be converted.  They are just looking for debate.  They are in it for the debate.  My experience says that no one has come to God through a debate.  Try and stear clear of the debators.  They will eat up your time and take you away from you mission.  Try and find the people on the fringes.  Those that are not so dogmatic against God.  Look for those who are willing to talk and discuss, and stay away from the debators.

Well, I've got a little more I can say about this, but I'll let this sink in first.  I'll stop for now and see if you have any questions.

Sharing Christ is more than just quoting some Scripture.  Paul would spend months in a town.  Working right next to them ... getting to know them personally.  Sharing Christ comes from sharing yourself.  Letting them see Christ working in you.  If you say you are a Christian and quote a few verses ... and then get angry and mean at the first person that razzes you, then you have shown that you are no different than any other person.  Don't use the old line "I'm not perfect, I'm just forgiven."  I want you to rise above that.  I want you to show Christ.  Show love.  Before you ever press 'post', no matter how small the post ... read it again and again.  Make changes, take out anything that might even be considered mean or condensending or sarcastic.  It is not easy.  It never is.  But really think about how you are coming across.  Even if you never help bring anyone to Christ, remember that there will be E-Vangelist behind you.  What you don't want to do is turn them off against the next one that comes after you.  If anything, plant the seeds for the next one to water.  You don't have to save the world over night.  There is a Body of Christ out there working.  Feel confident in that.  Feel at peace with what God is asking you to do.

I hope this helps.

Grace and Peace and Love to you.
14  Fellowship / You name it!! / Re:your favorite hymn on: November 04, 2003, 05:55:50 PM
Hmmm.  This is a little tough because what do we consider a Hymn.  I go to a contemporary service, so we sing different songs.  I also sing songs of praise all day long that are not out of song books.

Some of my favorites are:
I'll Fly Away - always puts a smile on my face
I Can Only Imagine
Amazing Grace - explaination not needed.
God of Wonders - I think this is the name
15  Fellowship / You name it!! / Re:capital punishment on: November 04, 2003, 01:42:12 AM
I would say that you will find the biggest arguement for capital punishment in the OT.  Especially in the Law.  Of course we could make that arguement that we don't kill people for many of the offenses laid out.  We don't kill those who commit adultry or homosexuality or many other things anymore.  I think it comes down to a personal conviction.  I, personally, am for it in many cases.  I see sexual child molestors, rapist and murders at the top of my list.  This is what we would call worldly consequences.  But as Christians, we must pray for them, we must love them, we must care about them and try to bring the word of Christ to them.  But their body must suffer the consequences of their actions.  Love should be unconditional, but that doesn't excuse the harm done.  If my child commited a crime, I would love them and stand by their side, but they would have to suffer the consequences.  I would hate it, and I would support and console them with every ounce of my being.  This should be the same feelings we project to other criminals.  When you see a criminal, imagine if that was your son or daughter.  How would you feel?  What would you do?  Isn't this the same love Christ calls for us to feel towards everyone.  Suffer consequences?  Yes.  But don't neglect to love the entire time.  

Hope this helps.

Grace and Peace to you.
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