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Our Lord Jesus Christ loves you.
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Symphony
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« on: October 20, 2003, 10:58:59 PM »

I'm responsible for the care and ongoing integrity of a rural property and its elderly owner.  

Under Current Events here, on a thread entitled, "Terrible Thought"(back on about page 4, Aug. 15), I presented the same question in current terms, that is basically asked in the Gary Cooper western, High Noon.

That is, if your town is being forced down a wrong road, should you say something--regardless?

Much of the movie builds climaticly, as Cooper, the marshal, increasingly realizes that, as he goes about town to elicit help in preparing for the return of four gun-slinging thugs, that everyone is only self-absorbed--his own deputy abandons him.  Only a 14-year old kid volunteers.  Towards the ultimate showdown, everyone has run and hidden.  He goes to the church, everyone there shrinks.  He goes to his old friends, they obviscate, or make excuses, or run and hide.  Even his wife, prepares to abandon him.  And as she's leaving the one hotel, the deskclerk says satisfactorly, "It's time he was gettin' his comuppance."--right to his wife.

For some years I have been writing occasional letters to the editor here in a rural US town, many of a moral tone, some specific about the gay thing--I was in disbelief when Clinton announced his policy about it in the military, in 1993.  Virtually no one here said anything.  ONe fellow who did, was domesticated away by family duties, or reponsiblities as a public servant, and no longer said anything.  He no longer even lives here.

I talked with the sheriff here; he condemned it vociferously--but that was only in the office.

Likewise one of the largest employers in the area, he likewise condemned it, to me, directly.  But never publiclly, in the newspaper, or any other way that I know of--at least for the community's sake, yet he is in the newspaper occasionally.

The gay movement is here.  I know so, because a church is, apparently, teaching that Jesus Christ was a homosexual.  I know that people are aware of this, at least some.  

But despite that, I also know that for some years now, it has been already in the regular media.  I know that people are aware of what is happening.  And family members are going that way.  

So I'm thinking I need to call a spade a spade--publicly--not just in a church somewhere.  Either with a published pamphlet using that intro from the Terrible Thought thread referred to above, or a separate one I have prepared as my most recent Letter to the Editor, which was refused(the newspaper office will apparently have nothing to do with me anymore...    I used to work there.  And the owner and editor there I know.  Just like in High Noon.  Even the town judge, there in High Noon, abandons his own marshal(Cooper)).

But, if I do this, via pamphlets, handing them out, or posting them, or some other method, I can already tell from many people, just by their silence--some of whom I've know since I was a kid--classmates, teachers, "friends", that I will pay the price.  It may mean even not being allowed in the grocery stores.  I could be accused of immflamatory speech, etc.(?) (Maybe bep here might know of what possible citations might be involved...).

But most importantly, it will mean the possible failure or forfeiture of the property and elderly person I am responsible for.  It will mean when I call for help on the property--the furnace man, the plumber, the painters, etc., they will no longer come.  The bank will certainly ask me to close the account--they won't want me coming in.  I have already been refused from taking night classes at the public school(computers), and refused from participating in public services that they offer. (Yes, that's illegal, at least w/o a court injunction against me, but it would mean challenging, which would probably mean getting a lawyer... and creating an unnecessary stink...and suing my own high school, a rather stupid thing to do).  The library is always helpful, but even there, I am "tolerated". .


Jesus on the cross gave responsiblity for care of his mother there to that disciple.  And there are many other scriptures supporting this, that we care for our own.

Alternatively, if I love even my own wife, or parents, or children, more than Jesus, I cannot be his disciple.

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nChrist
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« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2003, 11:50:44 PM »

Oklahoma Howdy to Symphony,

You have posed a very complicated scenario. I'll try to help in part of it, but I know the biggest part of it must be in prayer.

First, the newspaper might face legal liability in printing issues such as this. Winning or losing the court battle would be a moot issue, as the battle would be terribly expensive and time consuming. An individual would not have the same risk exposure as a newspaper, but there would still be laws that vary from place to place regarding the distribution of pamphlets. Hate speech is a relatively new area that I don't know much about, but it might apply depending on what is said and how it is said. Anything that might suggest violence or advocating the dispensing of wrath, justice, and cleansing should be avoided. You might want to check this issue.

There are other legal issues you should check out. There are legal ways that you can distribute material that simply tells the truth. Problems might arise in some of the following areas: (1) laws regarding the distribution of pamphlets, handbills, etc. , (2) laws regarding inciting to riot or disturb the peace.

Reference #1, many cities have ordinances about what can be distributed and how it is distributed. Some involve littering laws in leaving material under windshield wipers or on doors. Some cities address whether the person had permission to distribute the material on property that did not belong to him or her (i.e. trespassing).

Reference #2, most cities have numerous laws regarding keeping of the peace, prevention of riots, prevention of destruction of property, and especially prevention of physical injury or death. It would be one thing to identify a Biblical truth and quite another to suggest the Old Testament solution (i.e. stoning). An officer would be duty bound by oath to arrest anyone inciting violence, destruction of property, physical injury, or death.

I would say that what you are suggesting can be done legally if you determine the specific law that deals with where you live. One set of laws would deal specifically with whether violence or death is suggested in the material. In the absence of this suggestion, many laws would not apply.

I hope that I've helped you some. What I said was very general. Each jurisdiction and State has it's own laws that might or might not apply. On the other side of the coin, there is your constitutional free speech that is also very complicated by the intent or suggested intent of that speech. I know this sounds like a bunch of "mumbo-jumbo", and it is.

In Christ,
Tom
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« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2003, 07:10:21 AM »

Wow Symphony~  Undecided

Under Current Events here, on a thread entitled, "Terrible Thought"(back on about page 4, Aug. 15),

I just read through that. I'm sorry I missed it earlier. The one thing that jumped out at me was this quote:

RK said:
"I have my beliefs, other people have theirs, and you are entitled to yours.  Force them on someone else, however, and you'll get them thrown back in your face.  Deservedly."

Yet isn't that what's happening TO Christians? A forcing of beliefs on us?

As for your dilemna, I'm afraid that's where we are all heading. To speak of things in church, where it's 'safe' (for now), is one thing. To be taking on a whole town, so to speak, is another.

My initial thought is that if you are speaking Scriptural truth, the Lord won't forsake you and your needs will still be provided for. However, that isn't to say that there won't be much you'll forfeit. I'll have to think and pray about this. In the meanwhile, I'll be curious as to what others think.  Embarrassed

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Symphony
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« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2003, 08:24:32 PM »


Nope, bep, that's definitely not a bunch of mumbojumbo.    Actually, yours is an excellent short essay on some of the things we do need to think about--esp. for those of us who may not be exactly up to speed on those invisible realities.  Plus, we are to "rightly divide the truth".  And the ever-present danger is of coming down as malicious, or otherwise inappropriate, for a believer, or Christian, when we do begin in this direction.  Such is the "blackeye" Christians historically are leaving others with, in the name of "righteousness".

Thank you, sincere.  Yes, your reply re: RK, nails the issue.  There in Acts 4, and again in 5, Peter and John and the disciples are facing this against the Sanhedrin.  They are unequivocal, and don't mince words at all.  Sometimes God intervenes, like releasing Peter from prison, sometimes He doesn't(James is put to the sword).

I use to go on float trips.  "Float" implies downstream.  On one trip, just in a bend in the river, and after heavy spring rains, we capsized.  Don't ever capsize in a bend.  The downstream current we'd been pleasantly coasting along with, was suddenly now this mammoth, constant juggernaut pinning the johnboat under water against a submerged tree trunk.   My point, when you go against the current, you're suddenly aware of this very hostile force you never even knew was there.

Yes, I'm "sorta" taking on the whole town.  My amazement was the virtual, apparent, blackout on saying anything publicly, now years ago.   Even though privately, I'm sure that certainly most of the men must be equally as incredulous.  But its amazing to see how cowering we apparently can really be, when the pressure from down upon high.  It seemed exactly like there in High Noon.  All the men suddenly became docile little puppies.  And many of the men here are ex-military, a few special forces, etc.  

But if you can't say it publicly--wasn't that one of the whole points in the Revolution, in the first place--saying stuff publicly?   And besides that, what point is the Gospel, if it isn't a public Gospel?

But again, as bep cautions, prayer and serious consideration, and, as you say, sincere, remaining scriptural...  Definitely  walking in the Spirit.

What is that verse, if any shrink back, my soul has no pleasure in him? (can't remember where)

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« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2003, 08:28:01 PM »


But if you can't say it publicly--wasn't that one of the whole points in the Revolution, in the first place--saying stuff publicly?   And besides that, what point is the Gospel, if it isn't a public Gospel?

But again, as bep cautions, prayer and serious consideration, and, as you say, sincere, remaining scriptural...  Definitely  walking in the Spirit.

What is that verse, if any shrink back, my soul has no pleasure in him? (can't remember where)


Oklahoma Howdy to Symphony,

You can do it publicly. I guess that I should have addressed that as well. It would involve something like a parade permit. An assessment would be made of the risks to public health and safety, and someone would have to post a bond and insure adequate security. The last big and possibly violent event we had was an anti-abortion rally where they wanted thousands of people to be holding signs along a major 6 lane highway through the middle of town. Meetings were held about what could be legally done. I think they had a 5 million dollar bond for the event, and all participants had to know exactly what they could do and could not do and stay off the roadway on publicly owned easement. Everything had to be addressed, not limited to blocking business drives, hampering people from going into or out of businesses, cornering unwilling participants, etc., etc. It really boiled down to standing along the road in about a 10 foot strip, holding their sign, and being quiet. Obviously, they could do anything to cause an accident. The bond covered what could go wrong, and participants realized they would be arrested if they violated the terms of the permit. Some would say that isn't fair because they had to pay for a permit and agree to all of those restrictions. I think the permit was $7.50, and the city probably spent $5,000 processing it. The City Council had to meet and approved security arrangements, etc. It was agreed that it shouldn't be a big problem if everyone did only what was allowed on the permit.

If you want to do a speech in front of City Hall, you can probably get a permit to do it legally if that's what you want to do. There you would be talking about the time of the day, methods to allow city business, what types of sound equipment, etc.. Being able to make the same speech in an official City Council meeting would probably never be possible.

All of the rules would change if you took the speech to private property and change again if you took the event inside a building of some type. You would not need a city permit for a speech inside a private building that couldn't possibly cause traffic accidents or a host of other public related problems. You would simply post a sign for the event and worry only about applicable law (i.e. seating capacity, fire codes, legal parking, etc.).

Just some more thoughts for you.

In Christ,
Tom
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« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2003, 07:48:17 AM »

Where are you now with this, Symphony?  Undecided
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« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2003, 11:34:29 AM »


Mmmm, thanks, sincereheart.


I've printed out bep's responses and read them several times over.

Plus, just letting it sink in.

There are still probably many things one can do.  I hear of people keeping selected tracts with them, leaving one or two in public places--restrooms, counters, etc.   That's always a start.

At least in the area where I live, though, there's definitely a climate of hostile "tolerance" to Christians generally(--er, or, at least Christians who happen to read simple little stuff like the caveat on homosexuality, etc. ...).    Most of the churches seem intent on complicity, and silence.

So, I'm just reading the Word, reading widely, working, and taking it all one step at a time.   That's all we can really do--constantly waiting upon the Lord, looking to him, and understanding "...what the will of the Lord is..."(Coloss. 1:9)

I just saw a very interesting "Frasier" where he is confused with gays, and the whole unravelling that then occurs.  It sorta profiled the subtlety--at least to me, with which this immorality can sneak in.

The thing that "Frasier" and other sitcoms like that--perhaps "Everybody..Raymond"--that make fun of  the gay lifestyle, is, that, for in order for them to be funny, they have to rely upon an original premise that something is wrong with the behavior they're portraying--thereby admitting that there really is something wrong.

This particular episode would be perfect to show to an acquaintance of mine who is determinedly gay, even as he admits he doesn't know what to do about Romans 1.  Yet, strangely, he would be putoff by it--and here, something coming from the liberal-left Hollywood, no less.

So it's all from different sources, different ways of looking at things.  And you begin to realize there are truths being put forth--for instance, here with Kelsey Grammar, in Frasier, that they may not even be aware they are actually expressing.

God's truth, and the truth of Jesus Christ is just that.  Like tough roots growing up under concrete sidewalk.  No matter how thick you make that concrete, those tiny little roots can raise a slab of concrete.

So I'm looking at more than just a confrontational, or preaching, type of approach.  That's not to diminish confrontation, or preaching, though, of course!!
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« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2003, 01:14:43 PM »


Hmm.  More than two weeks later now.

Am working on it, Praise God.  That's for sure.  Every waking hour, as I do other stuff.

A collection of issues here to synthesize and develop.  Essential to have an accurate "sense of proportion", in all of this.  Very easy to lose the path, to be distracted, from what "is", to what "is not".

Two enemies at present :  1) Being Vindictive.  That in any "offensive" action(and as Christians, we're always to be on the offensive--to quench the firy darts of the evil one, bringing every stronghold into subjection under Him), that I not ever be vindictive.

And 2), Pontificating.  That I  not be using this as a soap box, or for self-advantage, grand-standing.


Largely for these two main reasons I'm wanting to take this "vewee, vewee swollwee"(as Elmer Fudd might say, hunting wascally wabbits-- Grin).  Hehe.


    Lips Sealed

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« Reply #8 on: December 20, 2003, 12:35:47 PM »

Yes, it's been more than a month now, since last post, tho not a moment nor an hour now that I'm not thinking about this--for us, as believers.

Note, for instance, one latest twist--just yesterday(addressed separately here, under Public Schools, Prophecy):12/19/2003

A Dupo High School senior is protesting the school administration's demand that he refrain from saying "God bless" at the end of a daily bulletin he broadcasts over the school's televisions each day.

http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/news/stories.nsf/News/0D129174F7DD019B86256E020013C5F4?OpenDocument&Headline=Dupo+student+protests+his+ban+from+broadcast+over+%22God+bless

I'm being watched like a hawk now.  There's a defiance in the air, just you dare mention God (much less Jesus), on public property...    Outwardly, authorities may claim for the same reasons cited in the above article, they can't be honoring one "religion" over any other, so they bar all of them.  I'm seeing this as more an excuse to advance just basic, godless, socialism--which is what it is--making themselves instead "God"(everyone has a "god"--atheists have a god--themselves.  They make themselves god--(that'ss why they're atheists)).

Those in public life here who use to speak to me, now look the other way, tho I've said nothing for months now.  Maybe they see the allusions I made publicly are now coming true more than ever.

I continue to see retired teachers, for instance, normally in daily community life, etc.; polished churches with apparently adequate memberships.  Plenty of ads for worship.  But, no one saying anything.


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« Reply #9 on: December 20, 2003, 03:44:28 PM »

Wow, Symphony! I can't believe I didn't see this thread before! That is great that you're willing to take a stand. Great. I'll post more later, but the thought occured to me that you might want to pray about it. Find out if this is a fight God wants you to fight. If it isn't, He may call you to brush the dust off your feet. Which of course, isn't merely a disgruntled farewell, but an imparting of judgment. A very serious deed, which God may be calling you to do. Because I really believe this nation is ripe for judgment.

But I will join you in prayer. God may be calling you to something really, really big. I'd pray that He leads you and guides your every word, your every contact, your every step, for the glory of His name and to your blessing in that service. If you do this, I have a feeling a challenge of god versus God will arise before your eyes. I've seen this happen. It wouldn't surprise me if He was planning this again, and you were His servant in this regard. Spend a lot of alone time in prayer and reading if you can, and I will do the same for you.
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« Reply #10 on: December 20, 2003, 06:39:08 PM »


Thank you, Whitehorse

I'd pray that He leads you and guides your every word, your every contact, your every step, for the glory of His name and to your blessing in that service. If you do this, I have a feeling a challenge of god versus God will arise before your eyes. I've seen this happen. It wouldn't surprise me if He was planning this again, and you were His servant in this regard. Spend a lot of alone time in prayer and reading if you can, and I will do the same for you.

Thank you for that wonderful prayer.  Yes, that's very good suggestion.  Yes, exactly, I'm praying and you are right, it requires submission to His will, care, and prayer.

Yes, I was feeling that god vs. God thing today, for sure.

It may involve me doing, actually, very little, activity-wise.  I've already done quite a lot, vocally, or publicly.  In some ways, the silence is as useful as the activity, since it allows growth to appear and for others to act or re-act, too.  I'm praying the Lord will give me the whole community, and environs, to His Lordship.  It will be interesting, b/c in some ways its as stiff-necked as those in Jeremiah.  Roll Eyes

Many think there is such a thing as neutrality.  Imagine the creature you've created then telling you that he doesn't have to acknowledge you anymore.  Smart move.  Roll Eyes

   
     Wink

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« Reply #11 on: December 22, 2003, 04:38:41 AM »

Oklahoma Howdy to Symphony,

I agree completely with Whitehorse,

I do believe that prayer in seeking HIS Will and guidance is the highest priority. I will continue to pray for you that GOD will guide your steps into HIS purpose.

Love In Christ,
Tom
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« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2003, 12:09:00 AM »

Symphony. I'm excited for you. This sounds really awesome. You're right-silence can be very powerful, too. Good point.

BEP, amen. There is great power in the agreement of prayer.

Sym, please keep us posted. I fully believe God is going to do a marvelous work through you.
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« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2004, 08:23:50 AM »

Any updates?  Undecided
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« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2004, 07:35:31 PM »

I fully believe God is going to do a marvelous work through you

Thank you, Whitehorse.  Yes, actually, I pray he would/will do a marvelous work through all of us, each of us, in our respective positions.  Each in our own way.  

Thank you, sincereheart.

Walking by faith is a peculiar thing.  I act, but I can't act before "the time".  Then, the Spirit working everywhere else too, that I'm not.  So sometimes, you never know what He's going to do next, or when He's going to do it, or where He's going to do it--whether through you, or someone else.

Folks are pretty self-determined.  And we proceed further with still greater determination.  Human beings are eternally self-willed; very wilful creatures.

Today's MA Supreme Court decfision re: gay marriage perfect e3xamploe.  I'm gathering now that even most in my own area are at least indifferent to that, if not approving.  

So the whole situation means walking circumspectly.  It's all quite evil, actually.  And you're not allowed to say very much anymore, it seems.  I could list a dozen right here locally who would have the clout to scream at this one; but everyone remains silent.  Everyone wants economic improvement; community betterment....   If you disagree with them, they can make it very difficult for you.  It's all quite evil.  Because the new policies, always evolving--or DEvolving--creep in only gradually.  Before you know it, you're a part of something you don't even recognize.  Like the common criminals who'd only intended to steal, but end up complicit in something much worse.  Only this time it isn't "common criminals"....

Of course, rhetoric such as this will get you the label of "paranoid".  But that would only be true if what you were recognizing in fact were not happening.  But it is happening, and people are going along with it, and those in responsible positions who know better are conspicuously silent.
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