The History of Christianity: Resist Liberal Changes, Then Capitulate.

Most readers in their 60′s and older have had experiences like mine.  I recall as a boy overhearing my Grandfather, a native of Sweden, telling my mother, “The Bibles today are not like the Bible I grew up with.”

Doing field work on the farm was considered a violation of the, “Keep the Sabbath Holy” commandment.  Virtually all stores were closed on Sunday as well.

Divorce was considered a religious issue.  It still is in the Catholic church.  The church I grew up in, as well as the huge Methodist denomination, considered alcohol a sin.  In my chruch, use of the standard “Deck of cards”, ballroom dancing and swearing were all sins. Parts of Protestantism opposed interracial marriage.

Movies were very suspicious in my church.  When the one channel of television arrived, church members did not know if it was sin or not.  Our young preacher we had bought one and everyone else rushed to the TV store.

As time went on, the church resisted approval of these behaviors, but eventually moved on.  It turned out the sin label had been arbitrary and negotiable.

We see this same pattern playing out before our eyes today.  Historically, few Protestant or Catholic branches approved of gays, gay pastors or gay marriage.  As these became more acceptable, Christian groups resisted.  Predictably, they are capitulating.

The practice of capitulating on sin has saved the faith from disappearing.  It seems like capitulation could happen sooner and not hurt a thing.

http://juicyecumenism.com/2013/03/13/methodist-history-reviews-tooleys-book/

Local readers, Freethinkers Potluck is this Sunday, March 17. Come, chat and eat.

Avatar of Jon Lindgren

About Jon Lindgren

I am a former President of the Red River Freethinkers in Fargo, ND, a retired NDSU economics professor and was Mayor of Fargo for 16 years.
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37 Responses to The History of Christianity: Resist Liberal Changes, Then Capitulate.

  1. Avatar of Mac Mac says:

    Being born in the 60′s I grew up during ‘women’s lib’ and the sexual revolution, so of course anything sexual rose to the top of the sin chart.

    Anything outside of post-marriage sex was sinful and really bad. Being Lutheran, we didn’t get hung up on birth control; but sex was still so shameful that no one talked about recreational vs. pro-creational sex either.

    Looking into your crystal ball, what do you think the next big sin issue will be?

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Mac 1:17 “…what do you think the next big sin issue will be?”

      Recently, Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University approved wearing flip flops. It’s going to be hard to stop any kind of sin now–all the gates are open.

      More seriously, the new sins will be like the old ones, they have to be ones people in the pews want condemned. With income distribution becoming so unequal, I see little hints, like use of the term “middle class”, that might suggest the next preoccupation. Maybe too much money will make the leader board.

    • entech says:

      Mac, I was at my peak in the 60′s, the big sin at the time seemed to be music. buddy Holly, Elvis Presley were the downfall of civilisation as we knew it.

      Everley Brothers, the respectable face of rock n roll had a song “wake up little suzy” it was about a couple of teens at the drive in and the movie was boring and they fell asleep till after curfew! it was banned on some radio stations, there was no suggestion of sex, quite the contrary in fact, the main problem seemed to be the discussion about how they were going to explain themselves “what’re we gonna tell your momma?” Perhaps even then the underlying theme was sex was evil, sex was sin, man is a sinner and will be at it at the slightest chance was prevalent so an excuse was needed.

      Hypocrisy never changes though, a few years later Lou Reed sang “walk on the wild side” and no said a word, could it be that no one knew what the song was about or more likely wouldn’t admit it.

  2. Stanta says:

    I don’t have much but I will put $20 down that we won’t see gay marriage in the Catholic Church before 2043, I should last until then.

  3. Henry says:

    Jon: “The practice of capitulating on sin has saved the faith from disappearing.”

    Jon, your theory doesn’t wash. The PCUSA is dying after going gay. They are broke. Their hearts are not into it, and their treasure has moved elsewhere.

  4. Ed says:

    Jon….when you say that a very strict church upbringing did not sour you on the bible and your faith, I have to shake my head. We all might be atheists!

    Thought you would enjoy this. It hits the nail squarely on the head….and I do look forward to your reply……..

    If a Republican doesn’t like guns, he doesn’t buy one.
    If a Democrat doesn’t like guns, he wants all guns outlawed.

    If a Republican is a vegetarian, he doesn’t eat meat.
    If a Democrat is a vegetarian, he wants all meat products banned for
    everyone.

    If a Republican is homosexual, he quietly leads his life.
    If a Democrat is homosexual, he demands legislated respect.

    If a Republican is down-and-out, he thinks about how to better his
    situation.
    A Democrat wonders who is going to take care of him.

    If a Republican doesn’t like a talk show host, he switches channels..
    Democrats demand that those they don’t like be shut down.

    If a Republican is a non-believer, he doesn’t go to church.
    A Democrat non-believer wants any mention of God and religion
    silenced.

    If a Republican decides he needs health care, he goes about shopping
    for it,
    or may choose a job that provides it.
    A Democrat demands that the rest of us pay for his.

    If a Republican reads this, he’ll know it’s so true.
    A Democrat will delete it because he’s “offended”.

    • Brad says:

      Pretty much all of that is false. None of those points apply to any Democrat I know, including myself. In fact some of those are the exact opposite of the truth. It’s based on a fictional stereotype of liberals that Fox News and Rush Limbaugh have invented. No connection to reality, just fictional freak show characters conjured up mainly to spread more hate.

      But that’s what I have come to expect out of today’s conservative movement. Keep it up though, because while it may sell just fine in this little pipsqueak Republican Hell better known as North Dakota, it’s failing miserably nationwide.

      • entech says:

        Look back on past posts from Ed and you will see that he just mouths of, pay no attention.

      • Henry says:

        Brad: “Republican Hell better known as North Dakota”

        Go live in the democrat bliss of Detroit. I previously gave you some links of the high life.

        • Brad says:

          “Democrat bliss of Detroit”?? Detroit was destroyed by globalization, foreign competition, predatory loan sharks, and the housing bubble, all of which were brought to us by 30 years of Reagan Republican policies.

          I get it though. This is all part of the GOP 2 point plan:

          1. Destroy America
          2. Blame Democrats

        • Henry says:

          Brad: “Detroit was destroyed……by 30 years of Reagan Republican policies…….GOP 2 point plan:
          2. Blame Democrats”

          Sounds like you invented that plan.

          • Brad says:

            Sorry, I can’t take credit for Republican atrocities, as genius as they may be.

          • Henry says:

            More blame. Sounds like you have the talking points down.

          • Brad says:

            Gotta assign blame where it belongs. When you push corporate policies to drive wages down and ship jobs overseas while destroying cities like Detroit in the process, it’s a little tough to blame liberals for that.

          • Henry says:

            Brad: drive wages down and ship jobs overseas while destroying cities like Detroit in the process”

            Let’s see….”drive wages down” simultaneous with “ship jobs overseas”. These are contradicting actions. If wages are driven down, it is more economical to manufacture a car in Detroit. If wages are not driven down, it is more economical to manufacture a car somewhere else (“jobs [shipped] overseas”). To extract a conspiracy from these as you have is rather strange.

          • Brad says:

            “Let’s see….”drive wages down” simultaneous with “ship jobs overseas”. These are contradicting actions.”

            Actually, it’s the shipping of jobs overseas which drives wages down here, or at least that’s one way they drive wages down. Another way is through illegal immigration. Cheap labor, whether it’s overseas or illegals coming here, is the new 21st century version of slavery.

      • Matt says:

        now now i think we can do better than the cheap shots at ND, after all we do have quite possibly the most succesful economies in the country….just sayin….

        • Brad says:

          Oh, silly me. I forgot that the Republicans magically injected all that oil into the Hoeven…er Bakken Formation, and magically controlled the weather and the ag commodity prices over the past decade. And of course getting $2 back for every $1 paid into the Federal gov didn’t hurt either.

          Funny thing though, our economy really sucked before the Republicans performed their magic a few years ago. Why did they wait so long to wave their magic oil producing wand?

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Ed 2:46 I’d call the list amusing–maybe some truth to a few. I’ll try to make one up that reflects how I see Republicans and Democrats:

      When a Democrat wants government involved, he calls it growth of government and thinks everyone should have access to it.

      When a Republican wants government involved, he calls it less government and wants the government only for himself and his friends.

      (It represents, to some extent, what I found in local government. Requires too long an explanation for this time of night.)

  5. Candyman says:

    where does it say that in the NT? …They worship me in vain; their teachings are merely human rules.’” Matt 15:9 Jesus disliked all the rules that the Pharisees burdened the people with he said Mat 16:6-12 Jesus said to them, “Watch and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” (7) And they began discussing it among themselves, saying, “We brought no bread.” (8) But Jesus, aware of this, said, “O you of little faith, why are you discussing among yourselves the fact that you have no bread? (9) Do you not yet perceive? Do you not remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? (10) Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? (11) How is it that you fail to understand that I did not speak about bread? Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” (12) Then they understood that he did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

    If you are using your freedom in Christ is sin, this is a whole different paradigm. Heb 12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,

  6. Brad says:

    Religion has to to keep changing and adapting to that dirty little thing called “reality”, otherwise it would have died off centuries ago. It’s just that some religions are in total denial about it, and others embrace it.

  7. Michael Ross says:

    “The practice of capitulating on sin has saved the faith from disappearing.” It may have save the “faith” but condemned the civilization.

    “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God”(Psalm 9:17) Why do all civilizations end up in the dustbin of history? Because they refuse to covenant with God. Will we lose America? We lost America many years ago, 1913 if you want to put a date on it. We went into a Babylonian style captivity. I believe God is about to pronounce judgement on Babylon the Great and entreats His people:

    “And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues” (Revelation 18:4)

    • Wolfy32 says:

      I had a similar back ground to Jon Lindgren. Mine was the conservative evangelical background of “Pentecostal” or Assemblies of God.

      I grew up in the 80s / 90s. I didn’t go to my first movie until 1995 when I was turning 18. Movie theaters were full of evil smut / origies.. (I can’t find those theaters, I’ve tried my hardest! Ha! ) Alcohol would lead to sinful, whatever… School dances led to origies. And I was allowed to rent movies that probably were worse than what a theater would have allowed me to see. And Gambling of anytype — I got spanked by my dad for playing “Go Fish” At daycare.. Because Go fish leads to a lifetime of gambling…

      For Jon and others, yes, Dogma is nothing I’m interested in. Religioun / political influences.. Again nothing I care about. Abortion is something we’ll never ever resolve and the issue is only brought up as a political tool to distract from real issues. I would fear the day that everyone agrees on Abortion.. There’s no point in arguing such a heated topic.

      As to Gays.. Well, I don’t care what people’s sexual orientation.. Imagine if we had hetero parades to celebrate heterosexuality like the gays do? Again another political tool for distraction while real issues that affect everyone are decided under the radar.

      As to the dogma of it all. I place my faith in God, not in an institution, not in an organization, or a pope, or a pastor, or a building, or a group of like minded brainwashed people. I think freely for myself and have faith in God. I don’t think the God of the universe is going to care if I saw a rated R movie. I think he’s going to care more about whether I go out on a violent rampage or not.

  8. Ed says:

    Jon3:34 wrote…….When a Democrat wants government involved, he calls it growth of government and thinks everyone should have access to it. When a Republican wants government involved, he calls it less government and wants the government only for himself and his friends.

    Jon… Not bad, but let me edit slightly………….

    When a Democrat wants government involved, he calls it growth of government and thinks everyone should have access to it regardless of cost.

    When a Republican wants government involved, he wants to be sure the government isn’t creating more dependence for those who can, but chose not to, take care of themselves. And if it is needed, he asks if the government can pay for it.

    Entech. 3:41….I am certainly OK with you not paying attention to my posts.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Ed 11:15 “When a Democratic wants government involved…regardless of cost.”

      Get serious, Ed. W Bush started two pointless wars. He told us not to worry, “Go shopping”.

      On gay Republicans being quiet, apparently you have never heard of the Republican gay rights organization, Log Cabin Republicans.

      The reason the comparisons you pasted from somewhere don’t jive with me is because of my political experience locally. Early when I was a Mayor, I asked a political science professor friend, “I don’t understand it. All these Republican businessmen want me to raise taxes and spend more money. Aren’t they supposed to be fiscal small government conservatives?”

      He smiled and said that one of the observations politican scientists had made for decades. Republican businessmen like bigger local governments because they make money off of them. One of the on going political problems I had was being a fiscal conservative in a Republican business town.

      These people wanted faster snow removal in the winter, more mowing in the summer. They wanted, and got, a great big airport terminal when a smaller one would have worked just fine. They wanted more bridges and interchanges, street reconstruction, more traffic lanes, stop lights instead of stop signs, I could go on. Once, I tried to convince the City to cross train fire fighters and police officers, done in other cities. It would have saved lots of the public’s money. No support from Republican business types. I tried to impliment a gasoline tax to pay for city streets, using the principle those who use should pay. Opposition to the max.

      I was often on the outs with both Democrat and Republican citizens for various reasons.

      In addition to being a Mayor, I was on an on water board. Lots of large Republican farmers like irrigation because the government pays for most of the infrastructure.

      Then, let’s not forget the times some Republican insisted on more regulation stores that sell porn. These were already heavily regulated, but they were not about to let individual store owners and customers decide for themselves.

      The issue of abortion, paients and doctors cannot be trusted by Republicans. Only government is honest enough to decide for them. It’s in the Republican Platform. There is the Farm Program, backed by every Republican Senator and Representative in the Middlewest for several decades. It is Republican dependency. Have you been out of the country for several years, Ed?

      On the other hand, these business instincts can be helpful. Gay and women rights have been advanced in some cases because the are profitable, in spite of Republican opposition.

      I’m having so much fun here, but I have to stop.

      • Henry says:

        Jon: “W Bush started two pointless wars.”

        Presidents can’t start wars. Congress authorized those wars prior to “starting”. The democrat led effort at intelligence even commissioned the intelligence report of WMD’s in Iraq prior to invasion. The democrat’s actions made Bush’s henchman, Colon Powell, look silly after the fact as the WMD’s found were not to the quantity indicated.

        • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

          Henry 5:31 The last I knew, the standing President appoints the heads of all government agencies that collect intelligence. Did that change during the Bush Presidency?

          • Henry says:

            They followed the directive of the democrats who commissioned the study.

          • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

            Henry 5:58 “They followed the directive of the democrats who commissioned the study.”

            And, President Bush/VP Chaney came into office the second term vowing not to attack Iraq? And, they did not start their own intelligence operation in the Pentigon outside the normal intelligence channels so they could get the intelligence they wanted??

  9. Ed says:

    It’s easy to attack any President for being at war. But to those of you who want to fold up our military and scale back spending…..I’m just glad that with Iran and North Korea and the other nut jobs that hate America ….that you’re not Secretary of Defense!

    Most Repuublicans admire, respect, and appreciate the good job Hillary has does the last 4 years. President? No.

    By the way Jon….I could tell you were indeed having fun writing…and your analogies comparing Republicans with Cass County farmers were also fun for me to read.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Ed 8:09 “and your analogies comparing Republicans with Cass County farmers were also fun to read.”

      Cass County farmers, the majority, are Republicans. That’s how the vote. They are one and the same. They would not apreciate you inferring they are Democrats. The majority of Cass County Farmers, highway contractors, downtown bankers, the Chamber of Commerce, etc. (I could go on) are big government Republicans.

      • Stanta says:

        My Mayville uncle who farmed said he always made more money when Republicans were president but always voted Democrat. Never explained that and I was too young to question him. They finally got indoor plumbing when Ford was in office, then almost lot his butt during the grain embargo on Russia.

  10. Stanta says:

    Now Jon, explain why so many donation bundles for Obama have gotten so many Green Energy grants for businesses that promptly go belly up?

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Stan 10:55 “Now Jon, explain why so many donation bundles for Obama have gotten so many Green Energy grants for businesses that promply go belly up.”

      I did’t say Democrats are good government saints. I said there are millions of big government Republicans. What’s amusing about Ed’s cut-&-paste is it’s assumption Dems create some entitlement to or dependence on government while Republicans are we-take-care-of-ourselves.

  11. Brad says:

    Warning: Do not drink the kool-aid that Ed and Henry are drinking. It causes political blindness.

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