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nChrist
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« on: November 28, 2006, 02:13:16 PM »

I've been wanting to ask this question for a long time, and now is a good time to ask it.

What does the term "Christian Fundamentalist" mean to you?

Please don't look it up. Your own definition is what I'm really curious about. If this was done under scientific controls, I'm sure there would be a lot of different answers.


This is like many other terms that come up in conversations between Christians on a fairly regular basis - everyone has a different definition. Let's have some fun and share some personal perceptions about what this term means. If we have enough fun with this, there are many other terms that might be fun to discuss. Please do share every detail that comes to mind and forget the dictionaries. Dictionaries would ruin the fun.

Love In Christ,
Tom

Philippians 3:20-21 NASB  For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ;  who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.
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Len
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« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2006, 05:12:30 PM »

My perception of a fundamentalist Christian is changing. I used to think they were uptight,self-righteous, over-bearing people with a holier-than-thou attitude. While these adjectives fit some FC's, they don't fit most FC's. And now that I am reaching a plateau of sorts in my walk with Christ, I see myself as an FC who tries really hard to not take on the afore mentioned characteristics.

And there are a lot more non-believers with those characteristics than believers. While hypocrisy is alive and well among Christians, its breeding and nurturing ground is among non-believers.

Am I uptight? A little, I think. But I try to be tolerant without violating my belief system. And in today's American culture, Brother, that can be very difficult.

Am I self-righteous? Not in a realistic sense. If there is anything righteous about me, it is because of the shed blood of Jesus covering my unrighteousness. It is certainly not a result of anything within my own power.

Am I over-bearing? I suppose sometime I am. But that is MY nature...not Christ's supernature. (God is working on that in my life.) 

Am I holier than "thou"? Or anyone? HAHA! I assure you, my Brothers & Sisters, there is NO ONE less holy than me. When Paul called himself the chiefest of sinners, he made that claim having never met me. But one day, we'll meet and Paul will say, "Well, I don;'t feel so bad about myself now."  Grin

Am I an FC? Oh, yeah. And glad of it. I think now that an FC is one who believes in the fundamental truths of God's Word. An FC believes in the inerrancy of God's Word. An FC knows without a doubt where he/she will spend eternity. An FC believes Romans 8 (kinda covers everything) to every jot an tittle.
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« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2006, 05:28:25 PM »

I use to think of a fundamentalist Christian as being a bit of a nutcase.

But like Len, my view has changed over the years and i now look at them as people who have the guts to say what they believe and are not scared what people and the world think of them. Over the years, society has changed and now accept as normal, things which past generations would have no way entertained. But i believe that a FC would stand up and say to heck with the norm, the bible says it wrong and so its wrong. And they won't be scared to confess that, whatever the world may say.
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« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2006, 05:46:25 PM »

Ok so now we will find out that many feel the same way Smiley  Cause I used to think the same as Len and Joey.  When you are outside or new you think of "fundamentalist" as almost like "extremist".  So I usually thought of them as crazy. 
But as God has worked more in my life I have found myself more and more relating to those that I once thought crazy.

And now that my mind draws a blank...there are a verse or two that relate to what the world would see of us... to them it is foolish...something along those lines...bad day...second monday of hte week.

Smiley
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« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2006, 06:11:02 PM »

 Grin  Yes, I think this is going to be some fun, but it may also be very informative. It's interesting how stereotypes are formed and when they are formed. As an example, many younger Christians stereotype older Christians.

Some of the stereotypes have been mentioned, but some haven't. We did hear something about "holier-than-thou", and this one is normally associated with Christian Fundamentalists. BUT, is it true or just part of a stereotype?

I'll give those who are dying to state their stereotype some ideas:

"Goody-two-shoes" an old term
"Stuffed-shirt" an old term
"Square" an old term

The definition by some might even contain thoughts of Puritans or the "Salem Witch Trials". Do you even visualize a stern and scowling face and an old man wearing a Puritan hat? Do you even have visions of the gallows, burning at the stake, and stoning?

The definition by some might involve harsh Old Testament Law and someone desiring to go back to Mosaic Law.

Have I hit any stereotypes for those who really want to answer this question and haven't yet?   Wink  Go ahead - let's have some fun. Tell us what you really think.
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« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2006, 07:09:59 PM »

I was just mentioning something about this in another thread. Many words change depending upon a persons outlook due to age, societies use of those words, misconceptions of their true meaning (perhaps due to lack of proper education? ), the reason can go on to even more I am sure.

Perhaps it is because I'm old school but I have always considered the word to mean the understanding and abiding by the basic fundamentals of anything. In reference to it's useage with Christians I have always felt it meant a person that took the whole word of God to be the literal word of God not just a guide book as "guide books" are meant to be just that a basic guide that can be twisted or turned according to different situations and desires. Non-fundamentalists do just that, pick and choose what they want to believe and discard the rest as being old fashioned or out of date.
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« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2006, 10:24:20 PM »

Pastor Roger, Brothers and Sisters,

I think that believing in all of the basic principles of the Holy Bible would be near the top of the list in terms of describing a Christian Fundamentalist. The argument might come in with various beliefs about what the basic principles are. Maybe we could start a list of the most basic ones first and see if there is enough agreement to add to the list and discuss again.

I would like to begin this list and see what everyone thinks. If we get close to reaching agreement, we can proceed with more. I really do think this might be interesting and informative, and we really might be surprised how close we are. So, here we go:

1 - Salvation is simple enough for a child to understand, but I'm going to put things as if I were talking to young adults and over. Salvation is faith that JESUS CHRIST died on the Cross about 2,000 years ago for the sins of mankind. Sin is disobedience of GOD, and all men sin, so we are all under a curse of sin and death. JESUS CHRIST was VERY GOD made manifest in the flesh, and HE was the ONLY HOLY AND PERFECT sacrifice who could rescue sinful man from the fires of hell. JESUS CHRIST and the CROSS were a GIFT from GOD from HIS matchless GRACE and LOVE - a precious GIFT that no man deserves or can earn. Man no longer has any sin offering or sacrifice that can be made which pleases GOD because the ONLY PERFECT AND HOLY SACRIFICE is JESUS CHRIST. So, faith in JESUS CHRIST and accepting HIM as Lord and Saviour is the ONLY WAY for Salvation. JESUS CHRIST arose from the dead on the third day and was seen by many witnesses before HE ascended back to HIS Rightful Place in Heaven. JESUS CHRIST is our Living Lord and Saviour forever for those who have Faith in all HE has done for us. In all reality, JESUS CHRIST died in our place and took the punishment we deserve in HIS OWN Precious and completely HOLY BODY. HE died - the JUST for the unjust - the HOLY for the unholy - the RIGHTEOUS for the unrighteous.

2 - ALMIGHTY GOD is a HOLY TRINITY - THREE HOLY DEITIES, yet ONE ALMIGHTY GOD. GOD THE FATHER, GOD THE SON (JESUS CHRIST), AND GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT are and always have been the ETERNAL and ALMIGHTY GOD - THE CREATOR! There are THREE - YET THEY ARE ONE and have been ONE for eternity past and will be ONE for eternity future. They crucified GOD HIMSELF - JESUS CHRIST - on that CROSS 2,000 years ago, and ONLY the precious BLOOD of JESUS CHRIST on the CROSS washes away our sins. ONLY JESUS CHRIST saves us and makes us fit to become children of GOD and receive a full inheritance with the Saints in LIGHT, the LIGHT of JESUS CHRIST. JESUS CHRIST holds HIS ARMS out in welcome to ALL, telling us that HE Loves us and wants all of us to come to HIM. GOD doesn't want any to perish in their sins without JESUS, but GOD won't force us to accept JESUS. The GOOD NEWS is that ALL who have Faith and come to JESUS will be accepted, regardless of the magnitude of their sins.

3 - The Holy Bible is GOD'S WORD - not the words of men. The writers of the Holy Bible were simply instruments that GOD used to record HIS MESSAGE to us. It is a timeless TRUTH from cover to cover, and ALL of it is for us to study and use to understand GOD'S MESSAGE to us. We must diligently learn how to study the Holy Bible and rightly divide the WORD of TRUTH as the WORD applies to us today. It is necessary to understand how the WORD applied during various times of history before we can fully understand and appreciate how the WORD applies to us today. I'll only mention a few of the major considerations that must be understood and applied:  1) Law versus Grace;  2)  before the CROSS versus after the CROSS;  3)  Israel versus the CHURCH WHICH IS THE BODY OF CHRIST.

4 - There is only ONE TRUE CHURCH, and it isn't made with human hands, nor does it have a name devised by man associated with it. The ONE TRUE CHURCH isn't made of brick and mortar, nor is it of this world. All truly saved children of GOD, the living and the dead, are members of the BODY OF CHRIST. CHRIST HIMSELF is the HEAD of this eternal CHURCH and we are members of HIS BODY. Israel is dealt with separately by GOD and we must distinguish between Israel and the BODY OF CHRIST. Separate promises were made by GOD to each of them, and they are NOT one and the same.


Brothers and Sisters, I hope this might be a good start. Let's all try to keep things basic and try to pleasantly discuss them as we go. If someone disagrees, we can agree to disagree and continue, but I don't think that I've listed anything so far except the most basic Biblical facts.

Love In Christ,
Tom

Ephesians 2:8-10 NASB  For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.
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« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2006, 01:25:09 PM »

Len you took allllllll the words right out of my mouth.

Yes I am proud to be an FC, some people may at times think I may go overboard especially when I praise God for things He's done for me, or when I offer to pray for them, or even when I give them Biblical answers to their problems. But then again I don't really care if they think so, just because they are ashamed or they may not want to hear the truth. I have a Higher Authority to answer to.

Am I self righteous, ABSOLUTELY NOT, I find myself asking God to forgive me for the same things over and over again. If it were not for the Blood of Jesus, I would be condemned forever.

WHERE WOULD I BE WITHOUT MY SAVIOR?

I want people to see the fruits of the Spirit in me, I want them to want Jesus in their life too.
I don't have all the answers to everything, but I know WHO does.  Cheesy Cheesy

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« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2006, 03:50:06 PM »

I will agree,
FC is a stereotype that was given to out, abused even, to those who seemed to be a bit "crazy" (if I can use such a word) at times.  I have also heard those claiming to be Christians say "Watch out, he is a "born again" Christian" as if there were another kind.  Then I remembered back to my younger days playing sports and my father, who was my coach at the time, repeating the fact that we had to have the basic fundamentals down so that we had a foundation to build upon.  It sort of makes me laugh how labels are given out.  I'm still very young however labels don't seem to phase me as much anymore, but I'll agree with my father, you have to have the fundamentals down. If that makes me a FC then I guess I'm a FC.  Great thread!

 Cheesy
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« Reply #9 on: November 29, 2006, 04:09:16 PM »

Did you all know that there was no such thing as “Fundamentalists” or "Fundamentalism" name tags before the early 1900's (1909 to be the earliest that I can find) ? The reason for this is mentioned in the threads above.

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« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2006, 11:36:51 PM »

GREAT THREAD!

Sister Maria brought something up that I would like to mention again. A Christian Fundamentalist would know that JESUS CHRIST is the only man who ever walked on this earth who didn't have sin and many things to be ashamed of.

A Christian Fundamentalist would KNOW that they are simply a sinner saved by the GRACE of GOD.

A Christian Fundamentalist would KNOW that they have NO RIGHTEOUSNESS of their own at all.

A Christian Fundamentalist would KNOW that the ONLY RIGHTEOUSNESS that a Christian has is in JESUS CHRIST. It isn't our righteousness - it's ONLY the RIGHTEOUSNESS of JESUS CHRIST.

So, I would conclude that all Christian Fundamentalists pray for forgiveness on a regular basis and KNOW that there is NO SUCH THING AS SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS - it just doesn't exist IN US. We are seen in and through JESUS CHRIST, and only HE makes us fit to obtain our inheritance as children of GOD. Galatians talks about people trying to establish their own righteousness as impossible and the obvious REQUIREMENT to YIELD to the RIGHTEOUSNESS OF CHRIST. CHRIST imputes some of HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS to us, and that is the ONLY RIGHTEOUSNESS we will ever have.

Love In Christ,
Tom

Romans 11:33 NASB  Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!
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« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2006, 12:49:41 AM »

Fundamentalism has become a word used as a stereotype meant as a derogatory word but when it was first taken on in 1909 by a group of Christians it was in response to what was known as Modernists. Modernists were those that wanted to change the meaning of the Christian beliefs to allow more freedom in varied beliefs. Some of the fundamentalist preferred to be known as Evangelicals. This group published a 12 book volume on the fundamentals of Christianity known as "The Fundamentals". This series is out of print and very hard to get a hold of however R. A. Torrey modified it and put it out in a four volume set due to money constraints. This four volume set can be found on the internet for free.

It is full of many beautiful truths just as this thread is.


Amorous mentioned "that we had to have the basic fundamentals down so that we had a foundation to build upon". This is something that we are also taught in the Bible. From the first verse, the entire first chapter,  in Genesis the foundation is being set. If we change the story of Genesis or throw it out, as some would have, then it changes everything all the way through Jesus and the cross. It gives the doctrine of the Being of God; the origin of the universe; the creation of man; the origin of the soul; the fact of revelation; the introduction of sin; the promise of salvation; the purpose of the elected people; the preliminary part in the program of Christianity.
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« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2006, 02:15:10 AM »

Amen Pastor Roger!

There is a reason why GOD gave us Genesis. HE wanted to tell us that HE is the CREATOR and HE is to be obeyed. We had a beginning, but the HOLY TRINITY does NOT. This alone is very difficult for human beings to understand, but it's just a minor fact for ALMIGHTY GOD. Man is very fortunate that our CREATOR Loves us, has some patience with us, and is merciful to us even when we disobey HIM. BUT, we also know that ALMIGHTY GOD can be a GOD of terrible wrath and HE hates the sin of disobedience.

Darwin can't even spell CREATION, much less describe it. All of the TRUTH that man knows about CREATION was given to us by GOD in the Holy Bible - HIS WORD. ALMIGHTY GOD CREATED all, and HE told us what HE wants us to know. It would be silly for a human being to think that they know about all the ways and means of GOD. Again, GOD has told us what HE wants us to know about HIS POWER and absolute dominion over ALL HE has CREATED. Saying that GOD'S account of CREATION in Genesis isn't truthful is calling the CREATOR - ALMIGHTY GOD a liar. Someone with common sense would know that it isn't smart to call their CREATOR a liar, but some self-professing Christians believe Darwin over ALMIGHTY GOD.

A Christian Fundamentalist believes every WORD of GOD and wouldn't dare call HIM a liar.


Love In Christ,
Tom

1 Corinthians 1:9-10 NASB  God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment.
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« Reply #13 on: November 30, 2006, 07:08:40 AM »

I will agree,
  I have also heard those claiming to be Christians say "Watch out, he is a "born again" Christian" as if there were another kind.  Then I remembered back to my younger days playing sports and my father, who was my coach at the time, repeating the fact that we had to have the basic fundamentals down so that we had a foundation to build upon.  It sort of makes me laugh how labels are given out.  I'm still very young however labels don't seem to phase me as much anymore, but I'll agree with my father, you have to have the fundamentals down. If that makes me a FC then I guess I'm a FC.  Great thread!

 Cheesy

Brother AM you made a very valid point here ("Watch out, he is a 'born again' Christian") As if people had to watch out for Born Again Christians, these are the very ones who think that it is "Born Again" Christians have the power to judge, save, or condemn anyone. They don't even stop to think that God's Omnipotence, Omniscience, and Omnipresence. He is unchangeable and He is Eternally God, that is who they should always remember, that no matter what they think, say, do, or where they go, He is always there, unlike FC Christians whom people think could condemn them. Those who call Christian fundamentalists are already judging themselves. The only problem is they are not doing the only thing that can save them.
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« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2006, 01:40:46 PM »

This a great thread.

My definiation of FC has changed from: Being an extremist and a nut case to someone being very passoniate about spreading the word and saving the lost. I now see them as someone who is on fire about Jesus and wants to spread the good news to all. I would consider myself a Fundamentalist Christian and would consider myself one. I am not on fire for Jesus like I should be but I do get my moments when I am on fire.
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