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Getting Real : Faith No More

Is the Family Christian?

from porceleindoll - Sunday, July 27, 2003
accessed 2745 times

What do you think? Can the Family be classified as a Christian organization?

They claim to believe in Jesus and pray to Him and give their lives in service to Him, yet there are other elements of the group that are not in accordance with Christianity.

What do you say, and what elements do you think are not in accordance with the Christian belief? If you are convinced the group is NOT Christian, what do you use to stand on that belief, and vice-versa.

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from fuckedinthehead
Tuesday, January 16, 2007 - 17:39

(Agree/Disagree?)

if you lived in the family.....and ever went pounding the streets with "literature"....and tricked someone into getting saved....then you must know also that the family claims its not a religion. christianity is a religion...i guess that would make them a cult!!
(reply to this comment)

from fuckedinthehead
Tuesday, January 16, 2007 - 17:39

(Agree/Disagree?)

if you lived in the family.....and ever went pounding the streets with "literature"....and tricked someone into getting saved....then you must know also that the family claims its not a religion. christianity is a religion...i guess that would make them a cult!!
(reply to this comment)

from jordypordy
Thursday, November 09, 2006 - 07:58

(Agree/Disagree?)
Im a christian and from what I hear about the family they are so not!
There seems to be nothing about knowing God personally and there is so much legalism!
(reply to this comment)
From Oddman
Thursday, November 09, 2006, 13:41

(Agree/Disagree?)
Oh, they get very personal with god. They practice what they call "loving Jesus".
They have imaginary sex with Jesus, while jacking off and saying stuff that would make Peter North and Jenna Jameson blush. They get very personal yes.

Legalism? Didn't see any of that. Saw a lot of illegalism though. :P

Child laborers, pornography, prostitution, false documents, obstruction of Justice, kidnapping, Parental kidnapping, beatings, rape, torture, contributing to the delinquency of a whole generation of minors. stuff like that.(reply to this comment
from krush
Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 01:37

(Agree/Disagree?)
Christianity as a catch all covers anyone who follows Christ. Many Family members most likely are true Christians, whether one can classify The Family as an organisation as a Christian movement is debatable. If one goes back to what the religious text followed by Christians state (at least in translation) then most likely The Family would not be classed as Christian as it were since there is a great deal of deviation. Just a personal thought.
(reply to this comment)
from krush
Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 01:36

(Agree/Disagree?)
Christianity as a catch all covers anyone who follows Christ. Many Family members most likely are true Christians, whether one can classify The Family as an organisation as a Christian movement is debatable. If one goes back to what the religious text followed by Christians state (at least in translation) then most likely The Family would not be classed as Christian as it were since there is a great deal of deviation. Just a personal thought.
(reply to this comment)
from Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003 - 20:22

(Agree/Disagree?)

Anyhow back to the subject at hand: "Is the family Christian?"

Well If you judge by the very basics they could be considered Christian because they believe in God and in Jesus as the Son of God and have some of the basic "Christian fundamental beliefs." But after that everything else is pretty non-Christian or borderline. i.e. the way of life with all the promiscuity, spiritism and a lot of the doctrines and beliefs that Berg came up with.

So really you could say in theory that they are Christian but in reality (in deed) they are more like liberal New Age'ists and psychics. (I think that’s what you would call it.) (and I might add false prophets)


(reply to this comment)

From Sir Rantalot
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 03:06

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

You've just proven how subjective the Christian religion is, either we go by the dictionary definition of Christian which clearly classifies TF as Christian, or we can start debating each individual flavor of Chrisitanity out there. We can make a list dividing all the current "jesus worshippers" into true Christians vs fake Christians, if we were to make such a list, by what guidlines would we classify each church? Oh right the Bible, I can see this will be a long, confusing and pointless attempt.

Whatever defines false prophets? I've been reading many different religious texts, not to find my brand of choice, more to realize how similar Christianit is to all the other 'truths' out there. Hell, I've been reading Goetian Magik, supposedly written by king Solomon, teaching ceremonial rituals for evoking 72 demons, if King Solomon supposedly 'departed from the faith' and delved into the occult because his heathen, how come in all his spells he refers to Jehovah as 'the one and only god' & invoking Jehovas' protection and standing in a pentagram is the only way to protect yourself from certain 'demons'. WTF???????? What about Gnostic Christians? Just to say you 'Christians' are a confusing lot.

I'll stick to being an anti-Christian Agnostic, I don't defend them, I don't excuse past behavior, I really battle to see any positive influence Christianity has on our society, and I get real pissed off when I see non-believers passively writting off Christianity as something vaguely good. It is this passive standpoint on something evil that a lot of the non-believing public has, and which I'm hoping will change in the future. I dream of the time when admitting to being a Christian will be as embarrasing and odd as admitting to a sex change today.

"oh, hes hasn't come out of the closet yet with his christianity" LOL!!! (reply to this comment

From porceleindoll
Saturday, August 02, 2003, 20:03

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

You said "I've been reading many different religious texts, not to find my brand of choice, more to realize how similar Christianit is to all the other 'truths' out there." I've been doing the same, mostly to find out why is it that religion has such a hold on civilizations and individuals. I was thinking that the OT seems to contain elements that are similar to the religions of the area, the idea of making sacrifices to please or pacify your god, and God commanded Abraham to sacrifice his son, which is the same as the other guys were doing. Although he didn't actually kill Isaac, in his heart, Isaac was as good as dead, in his heart he had committed the deed. How different is this from the other religions?

So I find it interesting too how similar Christianity was/is to many other religions, each seems to hold basically the 'same truth' just adjusted to the local traditions or flavor of the area.

But I have to agree with Gar that if you judge the Family simply on 'believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved' then yes, the Family is Christian, as well as the Mormons and a few other non-mainstream groups.

Here are are a few other responses I got over this question:

--< u>Berg having some credit for the salvation of many : Remember one of Berg's stories about a lady praying for bread? A man threw her a loaf just to mock her after she started giving thanks to God. He said, "Ha! it was not God but me". So she continued thanking God: "Thank you for the bread even if you used the devil to do it". Berg was being used to bring the Gospel and I recognize him for that, regardless of the real intentions of his heart. But in either case, he was not the end-time prophet, he was not even a prophet, he was not even a man of God but a salesman who had lots of snake oil. I have even wondered many times if he was really a man.

Christianity is more than just believing in John 3:16 or confessing with the mouth, the Sermon of the Mountain has some pearls: (Mt:7:21) Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. (Mt:7:22) Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

Berg will receive credit for what he did: "It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea" (Mt:18:6).

-- Mormons are not Christian just because they believe Jesus is the Son of God but that is not enough. The devil also beliefs, and trembles. The non-Christianity of Mormons is widely available in the Internet. I spent 2 years within their ranks and some in my flesh and blood family are Mormons to this day. As individuals, they are wonderful. Most of the Mormons I致e met are some of the most upright (and uptight, sometimes) people I know. It is a perfect club I would like to belong to. Too bad they are not a club but a religion that engulfs one's soul and takes it to depths of peril. Even if they have and use Jesus in their literature and speech they not Christians.

--..."the verse, "Why call ye me Lord, Lord & do not the things I say?" She never understood the verse till she lef the cult & saw how perfectly it applied to the Family. Then there's Titus 3:5, "They say they know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient and unto every good work reprobate." And Revelation, "Thou hast a name that thou livest, but art dead." That's the Family for you. The only true Christianity inside the group is the individual little people with their personal link to God.

(reply to this comment

From Mack
Sunday, August 03, 2003, 22:49

(Agree/Disagree?)

Well, said.
I don't believe that TF is Christian its just another Cult, and as with every Cult in the past TF was formed by a person who had another motive behind wanting to separate from the main Christian body. In David Berg's case his motive was a non-Christian sexual appetite he liked sex, and the only way to justify his appetite was to find verses in the Bible he could use in order to start his own doctrine (The Law of Love). Before I talk more about this lets look at the first real Cult in history it was the Church of England the King (King Henry VIII) of England wanted a divorce, but the Catholic Church would not allow it so he started his own Church. Other English Kings were not so insightful if they wanted a divorce they would just cut their wives heads off and the marriage would be over but that option was not feasible for King Henry VIII considering he was married to the Spanish Royalty and killing his wife (Catherine of Aragon) would have created a war also the King was in love with on of his mistresses (Anne Boleyn), his current wife was having trouble baring him a male heir and became too old to conceive. So he founded the Church of England and began persecuting Catholics.
As with David Koresh's case and his Texas based Cult "The Branch Davidians" Koresh was very similar to Berg in his sexual appetite for younger women and little girls etc. But I would not say Koresh was Christian either he was living for himself he even changed his name to David Koresh in order to fit into the Bible verse he used to found his Cult.
I will say that some of the members of these Cults are sincere of their faith in Jesus, and I will even say that some Cult members are genuine Christians. I'm using the word Christian in the spirit of the law and not the letter. Meaning that a Christian is a person who trys to follow in a life style that Jesus and the early Roman Catholic Church did, pure holy, not in sin and walking and talking about Christ, Salvation the Gospel.
It seems that today TF is really trying to change their image and are embarrassed of who their founder really was. Our parents know what a sick person he was and some of the younger generation does as well but they are either convinced he was righteous in his own actions according to "The Law of Love"; or they are just institutionalized in their life style of easy women and fairly easy money.
Look at how easy it is to sell some balloons, posters or CD's and make a couple hundred dollars in 4-6 hours. They choose their own work schedule and by being a member they are provided with the publications and recourses necessary make a decent living. TF answers to know one besides their Shepard and if they don’t like him or their current home they can get 3 members together and start their own little TF home. Every day people tell them they are serving God, better than the rest of the world, and are building a Palace in Heaven. They are only successful in Countries, which are already Christian, for example Central, South America and Europe. So clearly they are not telling very many people about Christ who weren’t already raised Christian they are only trying to convert people to their life style or get support from these true Christian people so that they can avoid getting a real job or being responsible. If this wasn’t true then they would let the public know of their doctrines up front and they would stay out of Countries that are already Christian. It's their own reality, and it's so sad. (reply to this comment

From Gar
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 10:29

(Agree/Disagree?)

Are agnostics all the same?? It seems that agnosticism is about as subjective as you can get. At least Christianity has a set of Rules (the ten cmmandments) that God laid down for people to follow. If they choose to follow them or not that is their choice. And some people try to follow some rules others pick and choose. (alot of them ignore them all together, including King soloman, Berg and the many, many idiots out there that do "evil" in the name of Christianity.) Divine choice, we are not robots. If I were go and kill someone and then say I did it in the name of agnosticism would it reflect on you? No, it's my choice on how I follow my belief. (Of course agnostisism doesn't really have any rules so I don't think I would be breaking any "agnostic" rules if I go and kill someone, I might just hurt another agnostic's feelings or something, or maybe hurt your sense of justice)

By the way the Bible has to be divided into two categories for it to make sense,

1. Stories and or events: things that happened

2. God's actual word to man (or laws)

If you confuse the two, than the Bible can be very confusing and that is what people (Berg one of the main culprets) do to justify their ridiculous actions. They say "well it's in the Bible" and aren't smart enough to discern between Gods will for man and mans actions regardless. So really if you know how to read the Bible in this context it is not confusing and makes a lot of sense.

As far as the possitive influence of Christianity... well I can see your point... there are a lot of freeks out there and a lot of stuck up jerks that think that they are better than every one else. But I have met (since I left TF) many very good people (Christians) who live decent lives, teach their children right from wrong and are actually doing good for society. So I can't speak for all Christians, (and don't want to just as much as you would speak for all agnostics) but I can speak for myself and those I know. I am trying to make a possitive difference in my community.(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 20:38

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Let's step back a minute and ask a larger, more important question: Are Christians morons? Yes. Are Family-members morons? Yes. Isn't the fact that they're all morons good enough? Let's group them, along with suicide bombers, shariah law stoners, alien abductees, and Amway salesman into one big category: People who believe in stupid shit! Then let's get on with our fucking lives!(reply to this comment

From Mir
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 16:21

(Agree/Disagree?)

I'm a Christian Joe, and I am definitely NOT a moron! However, I do understand how you lot feel about the subject. For us who were brought up in the cult, religion, but especially Christianity is a very emotive subject. One that conjures up all manner of uncomfortable feelings. I could sit here and argue with you till the cows come home, but at the end of the day it all boils down to one thing: Do you REALLY want to know the truth? (I'm not just picking on you here Joe) If you don't, that's cool! But if you DO want to know the truth MORE than anything else in the world, then all you have to do is ask. Ask GOD to prove himself to you. Not another human being. Why would you want a human being to give you a second-hand account of their experience? The thing is, when you ask someone for something, it's generally because you need or want something, and admitting that you want or need something can be somewhat embarrassing and or humiliating (in my experience anyway, unless of course you are asking a close friend or relative for a favour or something, in that case it's cool because you know that person). So anyway, if you don't want to put yourself in that position, that's fine! Certainly do not allow anyone to push their belief system on you (I think I may be teaching granny's to suck eggs here...:-)

That's my two cents worth people. You see, when I was 26, I really wanted to know the truth so I asked and something happened to me, Miriam. There are loads of things that I don't understand about the Bible or God, and there have been times when I've listened to preachers preach and I've though "gimme a break". But there is one thing that I know better than anything else in the world, and that is that God is there and that He loves me. This knowledge, which cannot be tampered with by another human being, is the thing that makes me tick. And d'you know what? I don't give a damn if you think I'm being "simplistic" and "un-intellectual"!(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Friday, August 01, 2003, 17:27

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Well I asked him a while ago and I'm still waiting for a response. I suppose I could go on the fact that I'm alive and well despite of all the stupid situations I've put myself in, but that seems a little tortured. I'll just chalk it up to luck until I see some real evidence to the contrary. But I think God prefers people to think rationally. And the fact that I'm trying to be a good guy regardless should earn me extra points at the end of the day if there turns out to be some kind of judgement. I'd like to close with something a wise biologist once said:

"If there is a creator, he has a preference for beetles"(reply to this comment

From Mir
Sunday, August 03, 2003, 16:22

(Agree/Disagree?)

LOL!

I think you are wonderful Joe!

When you say you are still waiting for a response, do you mean that you asked Him a few years ago and then got busy kinda getting on with your life, or do you mean that you ask Him say, once a week and you still haven't heard? If it is the former, then you might think about asking again when you're ready. If it's the latter, then don't worry about it! All in good time. There must be a reason why he hasn't answered you YET. Believe me, He has His own reasons and those reasons are there to benefit you. Maybe He knows that now is not the right time for you...(reply to this comment

From porceleindoll
Saturday, August 02, 2003, 20:08

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I've asked God as well and am waiting for a response. I figure if I gave most of my life to Him in His service then He can at least help me through my doubts right now.

And doesn't it strike you as funny that the 'heathens' living around you seem to have the same 'blessings' Christians thank God for? House, food, basically safe life...(reply to this comment

From Mir
Sunday, August 03, 2003, 16:10

(Agree/Disagree?)

And He will Pdoll. But contrary to the CoG's beliefs, He is not in a hurry to "beat" you into believing in Him. (The only reason He wants you to believe in Him is because He loves you... that was the HARDEST thing for me to wrap my head around. God was perfectly patient with me, perfectly gentle, never pushing or pulling me around) It took me 8 long years before I could acknowledge that He might be there. I read lots of different books about lots of different religions, boozed, partied, took drugs. I had some brilliantly fun times and some terrible, terrible times as well. I don't regret any of it. However, I was empty and depressed.

I think it all started when I was living alone in an old flat and I started to get really scared at night. (It could've had something to do with the amount of weed I was smoking tut-tut!) I would try different "techniques" to try and calm myself down but nothing worked. In the end I thought it might be an idea to recite something to myself and the first thing that sprang to mind was The Lord's Prayer. I though "well, I don't believe in it but I'll try anything to help me snap out of this horrid fear I'm feeling" and it did. After that it was a long process of what I now understand was God gently bringing me closer to Him. I now know that He wanted me closer to Him so He could heal me and prove to me that He loved me, Miriam.

Now that I'm a mother I can really understand how much He loves me. How he PATIENTLY waited for me to be ready. Imagine if someone had stolen our children when they were toddlers and brought them up to believe that all the horrible things that were happening to them were actually "good" and that that was the way that "your mummy told me to bring you up, she really approves of the way I discipline you etc etc" Imagine that our children then escaped from their captors when they were adults and that we, their mothers found them again and tried to build a relationship and show them that actually we HATED the way they were being treated but were powerless to take them out of that situation. There were some things that we could do for them behind the scenes that they never knew about (like the time when I was 7 and I was going to get a severe beating from our male childcare worker. I prayed and asked God to save me from the spanking, and to my astonishment, he changed his mind and didn't spank us, which NEVER EVER happened.) I think that we as mothers would be prepared to wait for a loving relationship to form between us and our children FOREVER if that's what it took. God will wait for you. Don't let anyone push you and don't be hard on yourself either.

You are right that "heathens" have the same blessings we pray for. I think the main difference, at least for me, is that when I worry about something such as someone abducting my son, abusing him, accidents etc etc, I turn my worries into prayers. But I know that these are not empty prayers because I know in my heart that God hears me, and if He hears me I know that He will take my worries upon Himself, so therefore I don't need to worry anymore. It's such a relief!(reply to this comment

From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 21:12

(Agree/Disagree?)
Why don't we ask "are agnostics morons"? Yes. why don't we just put them in the same category with all the serial killers, Ive heard a lot of them were agnostic.(reply to this comment
From frmrjoyish
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 22:54

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

How many agnostics do you know who ruined thousands of peoples lives, or are/were serial killers and child molesters? Now ask how many religious crazies have gone off and done the same??? Lets start counting......David Berg, about a zillion Catholic Priests, another zillion TV evangelist con artists, Heavens Gate, Jim Jones, Rev. Moon, these new crazy cloning cults,...can anyone think of anyone else????

An agnostic just admits that they don't know, not claims a bunch of BS that they can't prove!!(reply to this comment

From Gar
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 12:30

(Agree/Disagree?)
frmrjoyish: This has nothing to do with your comment, but I just wanted to say that I like your little blurb under your pic. It is so true about that "bond". No one else in the world can understand us like we can eachother and we have to stick together! (regardless of our beliefs)(reply to this comment
From frmrjoyish
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 16:34

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Gar: I completley agree! I may get involved in some heated debates, but I don't take anything personally and I certainly don't try to hurt anyone's feelings or hold anything against anyone whose opinions differ from mine! Politics and religion are touchy subjects even to the best of friends and family. Like I said before, I rather someone give an intelligent argument even if I disagree! But, I'll sure as hell argue my point with ya'!! :) (reply to this comment
from Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003 - 11:57

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I think it is important for us who have left to make sure we distinguish between real Christianity and the imposter (or TF and Berg) I thought this article was pretty compelling about true Christianity (which I defend) I don't know if I am supposed to put anything here that is not my own comments, but I couldn't have said this any better so here goes. Hey, and if you really are an open minded person you should read this so that you can eventually come to an educated decision on your faith.

How I know Christianity is True
Pat Zukeran

Because Christianity Teaches the Correct WorldviewAmong all the religions and philosophies, how do we know Christianity is true? While there are many ways to address the question, let's begin by saying that Christianity makes sense of the world around us. In other words, it presents the most correct worldview based on the world in which we live. There are three worldviews that lie at the foundation of all religions and philosophies: theism, naturalism, and pantheism. Theism teaches there is a personal God who created the universe. Naturalism teaches there is no divine being and that the universe is the result of time and chance. Pantheism teaches that the universe is eternal and that the divine is an impersonal force made up of all things. All three worldviews cannot be true at the same time and if one of them is true, the other two must be false.

The evidence from our study of the universe points to theism. Unfortunately, time will allow me to go over only three lines of evidence.

The first is the argument from first cause or the cosmological argument, which states if something exists, it must have either come from something else, come from nothing, or have always existed. What is the most reasonable conclusion of the three for the existence of the universe? Scientists confirm that the universe has a beginning. Many call this the "big bang." Since the universe assuredly has a beginning, the worldview of pantheism bears the burden of proof. Second, to say the universe comes from nothing goes against responsible scientific inquiry and human logic. For example, any invention in human history is not brought about from nothing. It comes from materials and ingenuity that existed before its inception. Therefore, the naturalist worldview has no logical ground to stand on. The best conclusion is that the universe is the result of a cause greater than itself. That cause is God.

Second, we have the proof of design or the teleological argument. Complexity and design point to a designer. For example, although all the parts of a watch are found on the earth, no one would assume it evolved as the result of natural, unguided actions of chance. Why would we conclude otherwise when we look at the human brain or the human anatomy, which is much more complex? The more we discover about the universe and nature, the more we realize how unlikely it is that this could have all happened by accident. Therefore, the burden of proof is on the worldviews of naturalism and pantheism, which hold to a position of evolution.

Finally we have the moral argument. All people have a sense of right and wrong. In every culture, adultery, murder, and stealing are wrong. Where does that universal sense of right and wrong come from? A moral law code requires a moral Lawgiver who is personal and reflects the moral law in His character. Since we are made in God's image, we reflect His moral law. C.S. Lewis stated, "As an atheist my argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust?"{1} Naturalists and pantheists have difficulty accounting for the human conscience.

For these reasons, theism is the only possible worldview that can remain true to scientific and philosophical scrutiny.{2}
Because the Bible is God's WordAmong all the books written by man, none have the credentials that equal the Bible. The second evidence for Christianity is the Bible, which proves itself to be true and divinely inspired.



The Bible proves itself to be true because it is a historically accurate document. Thousands of archaeological discoveries confirm its historical accuracy. Numerous civilizations, rulers, and events once thought legendary by the skeptics have been confirmed by archaeology. Even miraculous geographic events in Sodom and Gomorrah, Jericho, and Sennachareb's defeat in the 7th century B.C. have passed the test of archaeological scrutiny.

Another proof of the Bible's truth is in historical records outside the Bible. Numerous historical records from ancient civilizations confirm the historicity of the biblical accounts. Dr. William Albright, who is still respected as probably the foremost authority in Middle Eastern archaeology, said this about the Bible: "There can be no doubt that archaeology has confirmed the substantial historicity of the Old Testament."{3} The historical evidence upholds the premise that if an ancient historical work proves to be accurate again and again in its detail, we can be confident that it is accurate on the material we cannot confirm externally.

The Bible's divine inspiration is attested to in its unity. Although the Bible is written over a 1500 year period, written by over forty different authors from different backgrounds, and covers a host of controversial subjects, it maintains a unified theme and it does not contradict itself in principle from beginning to end. This indicates that a divine author supervised the entire process and guided each writer.

Second, we have the remarkable record of prophecy. Hundreds of detailed prophecies are written years before the event takes place. For example the prophet Ezekiel in chapter 26 describes accurately how the city of Tyre will be destroyed years before it occurs. Daniel predicts the empires of Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome. Prophecy shows the divine hand of God because only an eternal being could have inspired the writers to leave such a legacy.

Finally, the Bible answers the major questions all belief systems must answer. Where did we come from? What is the nature of the divine? What is our relationship to the divine? What is the nature of man? How do we explain the human predicament? What is the answer to the human predicament? What happens after death? And how do we explain evil? Any system that does not answer these questions is an incomplete system. The Bible gives the most complete and accurate answers to the truly important questions of human existence.

No other book ever written has these credentials. A book written by God would have the fingerprints of God all over it. The Bible alone has His fingerprints.{4}
Because Jesus Confirmed His ClaimsHow do I know Christianity is true? Another source of confirmation comes from the person of Jesus Christ. Among all men who ever lived, Jesus stands apart from each one. Throughout the gospels, Jesus claimed Himself to be God. He claimed to have authority over the law, creation, sin, and death. John 10:30-33 states,




'I and the Father are one.' Again the Jews picked up stones to stone Him but Jesus said to them, 'I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?' The leaders replied, 'We are not stoning you for any of these but for blasphemy because you a mere man, claim to be God.'

The Jewish enemies of Christ clearly understood His claims and it is for this reason they killed Him. His disciples also understood His claim and presented it in their message. Not only did He make an extraordinary claim; Jesus confirmed it. There are numerous ways in which Christ proved His claims. I will cover only four.

The first confirmation of Jesus' claims is His sinless life. Jesus' most intimate companions stated He committed no sin that He needed to repent of. Paul writes of Christ, "God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God." (2 Cor. 5:21) It would have been hypocritical of Jesus if He had indeed sinned and never repented, for He taught all men this principle. Even His enemies could find no sin in Him. Pontius Pilate, after examining Jesus, stated to the angry mob, "I find no basis for a charge against him." The Bible declares God is holy and Jesus showed Himself to be holy as well.

The second confirmation is the impact of Christ on mankind. More schools and colleges have been built in the name of Christ than any other man. More hospitals and orphanages are built in the name of Christ than any other person. More literature and music are written about Christ than any other person. More laws and ethical codes are built on His teachings than any other man. He has had a tremendous impact on every area of culture like no one else.

The third confirmation is the miracles He performed. God's existence makes it reasonable to assume He would use miracles to confirm His message and messenger. Miracles are a powerful confirmation because it authenticates the creator's authority over His creation. Christ's miracles over nature, sickness, spiritual forces, sin, and death displayed this authority over every realm of creation.

The fourth confirmation is the fulfilled prophecies. Before He set foot on the earth, there were over seventy specific prophecies made by the Old Testament writers about the Messiah. The prophecies included the city of birth, His method of execution, His betrayal, the date of His death, etc. Jesus fulfilled each of these. The probability of His fulfilling just eight of these by chance is very close to a mathematical zero.

No one has both made the claims of Christ and confirmed them, as He did. His life is another proof Christianity is true.{5}
Because of the ResurrectionJesus further confirmed His claims to be God by rising from the dead. Jesus openly proclaimed that as God He had authority over life and death. He states in John 11:25, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and he who believes in me will never die." The resurrection is proof that His claim is true.



Many skeptics have presented alternative theories to the resurrection. Some of the most famous include: the theory that the disciples stole the body, the disciples went to the wrong tomb, the disciples hallucinated the resurrection, Jesus did not die but went unconscious on the cross, and the most recent theory is that wild dogs ate the body of Jesus.

However, these arguments have been shown to be severely flawed and could not account for all the facts surrounding the events of the resurrection. Many have done detailed analysis of the evidence and have concluded that the resurrection must be a historical event. The late Simon Greenleaf, the former Royal Professor of Law at Harvard, performed one of the most famous of these studies. In his book, The Testimony of the Evangelists, the Gospels Examined by the Rules of Evidence, he concluded,


They had every possible motive to review carefully the grounds of their faith and the evidences of the great facts and truths which they asserted; . . . It was therefore impossible that they could have persisted in affirming the truths they have narrated had not Jesus actually risen from the dead, and had they not known this fact as certainly as they knew any other fact.

As an atheist, lawyer and journalist Lee Strobel did a two-year investigation on the resurrection interviewing some of the great scholars on both sides. He finally concluded in his book The Case for Christ ,


In light of the convincing facts I had learned during my investigation, in the face of this overwhelming avalanche of evidence in the case for Christ, the great irony was this, it would require much more faith for me to maintain my atheism that to trust in Jesus of Nazareth.{6}

No one has been able to conquer death by raising himself or herself from the dead. Jesus by His resurrection proves He is God. For only God, the giver of life has the authority over life and death. Since Jesus substantiates His claims, we conclude He is divine and what He teaches is true and authoritative.

Jesus also taught the Bible to be God's Word. Therefore, the Bible is the foundation for all truth to all of mankind in every culture and for all time. Any teaching that is contrary to those of Jesus and the Bible are false.{7}
Because I Have Experienced ItJesus Christ and the truths of the Bible are not simply facts to be stored in our minds, they are truths that we are invited to experience in a personal way. God invites us to a personal relationship with Him. The evidence points convincingly toward Jesus Christ. After reviewing the evidence, we each must make the decision to move in the direction the evidence is pointing. It is then that we experience the reality of God in our lives. Although an individual's experience is a subjective thing, it is part of the proofs that authenticate faith.



When I first heard that the God of the universe loved me and desperately wanted a relationship with me, I thought it was the greatest news I ever heard. As I began to share my newfound discovery, I met scholars who seemed to have convincing proof that this was all a religious fantasy.

As I searched for answers I came across several Christian scholars who were able to defend the authority of the Bible and the claims of Christ. As I weighed the arguments and questioned men and women on both sides, I could not deny the overwhelming evidence that supported the Bible and the claims of Christ. Eventually I came to the conclusion that Jesus Christ is Lord.

I then realized it was time for a decision. Often we do not have all the answers, but we move in the direction in which the evidence is pointing. For example, many of us do not really know for sure if the person we are marrying is the right one. However, we make our decision based on the evidence we see at the time. If I find that I can communicate with my fiancé, our personalities are compatible, and that we share the same values, we move in the direction in which the evidence is pointing. When we make the commitment to marry, then our decision is confirmed definitively. Till we make the commitment, we base our decision on the evidence at hand. The same is true with becoming a Christian. Although we do not have all the answers, we can have enough faith to make a decision. When we commit our lives to Christ, we then experience the fullness of a relationship with the risen Savior.

It was then that I made the conscious decision to believe in Jesus Christ. I asked Christ to forgive my sin and invited Him to be the Lord of my life. Although nothing dramatic happened, I knew I had changed. I experienced the peace that comes from knowing your sins are forgiven. I experienced the joy of knowing I was placed here with a purpose and that there is meaning to my existence. Although I still had some questions, sins that I struggled with, and difficult trials, I had an ever-abiding peace and joy I had never had before.

The more I studied the Bible, the more the world around me began to make sense. I gained a new understanding in all my academic studies. The complexity of life on earth, biological organisms, and planets reflected the character and intelligence of a loving Creator who wants us to enjoy His creation.

My struggles in relationships were the results of selfishness, and a sinful attitude in my heart. Once I began to follow the principles of Christ's love, my friendships became much more meaningful and joyous, not competitive. I experienced freedom from living up to others' expectations because the God of the universe loved me just for who I was.

I experienced the reality of the Bible promises as I applied them to my life. My faith continues to grow each time I see that God's truth works in every day life. The more time I spend with God in prayer, in study, and in worship, the stronger my faith becomes.

How do I know Christianity is true? The facts behind it along with my experience of God's promises confirm it.

Notes



  1. Lewis, C.S. Mere Christianity. (New York, NY: Macmillan Publishing, 1960), 45.

  2. For more extensive discussion read the Probe article, "Evidence for God's Existence " by Sue Bohlin.

  3. Albright, William. Archaeology and the Religion of Israel. (Baltimore, MD: John Hopkins, 1953), 176.

  4. For more extensive discussion read the Probe article, "The Authority of the Bible."

  5. For more extensive discussion read the Probe article, "The Uniqueness of Christ."

  6. Strobel, Lee. The Case for Christ. (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 1998), 265.

  7. For more extensive discussion on the resurrection read the Probe article, "Resurrection, Fact or Fiction."


Suggested Reading

Apologetics General

Boa, Kenneth. I Am Glad You Asked . (Colorado Springs, CO: Victor Books, 1994).

Craig, William Lane. Reasonable Faith: Christian Truth and Apologetics. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 1994).

Geisler, Norman. When Skeptics Ask . (Wheaton, IL: Victor Press, 1989).

Lewis, C. S. Mere Christianity . (New York, NY: Macmillan Publishing, 1960).

McGrath, Alister. Intellectuals Don ' t Need God and Other Modern Myths. (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 1993).

Moreland, J.P. Scaling the Secular City . (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1987).

Murray, Michael J., ed. Reason for the Hope Within . (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans Publishing, 1999).

Nash, Ronald. Faith and Reason . (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 1988).

Probe Mind Games Notebook . (Probe Ministries International, 1998).

Stroebel, Lee. The Case for Faith. (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 2000).

Zukeran, Patrick. Unless I See. . . Reasons to Consider the Christian Faith . (Dallas, TX: Brown Books, 2000).

Worldviews

Nash, Ronald. Worldviews In Conflict: Choosing Christianity in a World of Ideas . (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 1992).

Phillips, W. Gary, and William E. Brown. Making Sense of Your World: A Biblical Worldview . (Salem, WI, 1996).

Sire, James. The Universe Next Door: A Basic Worldview Catalog , third ed. (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1997).

Note: Material on the subjects below can also be found under the "Apologetics General" heading above.

The Existence of God

Jastrow, Robert. God and the Astronomers. (New York, NY: Norton & Company, 1978).

Dembski, Bill. Intelligent Design . (Downer's Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1999).

Evans, C. Stephen. The Quest for Faith: Reason and Mystery as Pointers to God. (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1986).

Kreeft, Peter and Ronald Tacelli. Handbook of Christian Apologetics. (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1994).

Moreland, J.P. The Creation Hypothesis . (Downer's Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1994).

Ross, Hugh. The Creator and the Cosmos . (Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress Publishing, 1993).

Zacharias, Ravi. Can Man Live Without God? (Dallas, TX: Word Publishing, 1994).

The Bible

Bruce, F.F. The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable? (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1983).

Geisler, Norman, and William Nix. A General Introduction to the Bible . (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1986).

McDowell, Josh. Evidence That Demands a Verdict . (San Bernadino, CA: Here's Life Publishers, 1972).

_______. More Evidence That Demands a Verdict . (San Bernadino, CA: Here's Life Publishers, 1975).

Price, Randall. The Stones Cry Out . (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1997).

Jesus Christ

Greenleaf, Simon. The Testimony of the Evangelists: The Gospels Examined by the Rules of Evidence.

(Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1995).

LaHaye, Tim. Jesus, Who Is He? (Sisters, OR: Multnomah Books, 1996).

McDowell, Josh. The Resurrection Factor . (San Bernardino, CA: Here's Life Publishers, 1981).

Morison, Frank. Who Moved the Stone? (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 1958).

Strobel, Lee. The Case for Christ. (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 1998).

Is Jesus the Only Way?

Anderson, Norman. Christianity and the World Religions . (Downer's Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1996).

Carson, Donald . The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism . (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 1996).

Nash, Ronald. Is Jesus the Only Savior? (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 1994).

Netland, Harold. Dissonant Voices . (Vancouver, BC: Regent College Publishing, 1991).

Okholm, Dennis. Four Views on Salvation in a Pluralistic World . (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 1995).

Richard, Ramesh. The Population of Heaven . (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1994).

© 2002 Probe Ministries
(reply to this comment)

From Nancy
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 20:16

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I don't give a flip about Christianity. So many terrible things, like hate and discrimination, have been commited in the name of Christianity. So many "Christians" give the word a bad meaning.

But, I heard a new song by Live recently. It went something like, "I don't need to be told of God. I see the sunset, and I know He exists. Don't talk to me of heaven. I see my daughter, and I believe." I don't have it just right, but it's sort of close.

That sums up my doctrine. (reply to this comment

From Nancy
Friday, August 01, 2003, 13:55

(Agree/Disagree?)

Okay, this is how the chorus goes:

I'll believe it,

When I see it for myself,

I don't need no one,

To tell me about heaven,

I look at my daughter,

And I believe,

I don't need no proof,

When it comes to God and truth,

I can see the sunset,

...I don't need no one.

The song is called Heaven. It has just been released. It is by Live. Sure, you're thinking of the same one, Joe?(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 20:40

(Agree/Disagree?)
I hate that fucking song!! Trite, sappy piece of crap! Are you sure that was Live?(reply to this comment
From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 20:36

(Agree/Disagree?)

You're right, there are lot of idiot's out there, but I wouldn’t blame it on God, it's called "freedom". And hey if you "believe" without calling it Christianity, all power to ya!

I think the main purpose of calling it "Christianity" is to identify a belief system. If people misuse that "identity tag", it's their fault not a necessarily a flaw in the belief system.

(reply to this comment

From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 20:36

(Agree/Disagree?)

You're right, there are lot of idiot's out there, but I wouldn’t blame it on God, it's called "freedom". And hey if you "believe" without calling it Christianity, all power to ya!

I think the main purpose of calling it "Christianity" is to identify a belief system. If people misuse that "identity tag", it's their fault not a necessarily a flaw in the belief system.

(reply to this comment

From frmrjoyish
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 13:40

(Agree/Disagree?)

I applaud your effort to present what seems like logical evidence, but if you break it down, it doesn't make sense!

"Scientists confirm that the universe has a beginning. Many call this the "big bang." The Big Bang Theory has not been "confirmed" by science as your author claims. While it seems to be the currently accepted thoery, it is a very controversial one, and so far has not been accepted by many many prominent scientists.

"Second, to say the universe comes from nothing goes against responsible scientific inquiry and human logic accepted by a great many scientists." This completly contradicts the first statement. If science "confirms" the Big Bang Theory, then science would have to confirm that the universe did indeed come from nothing. Your author should be careful when trying to twist scientific theory around to support an argument for christianity! Usually the two don't mix, except in the minds of pseudoscientists who begin their theories trying to prove the Bible...which is unacceptable in order to adhere to the Scientific Method.

"Second, we have the proof of design or the teleological argument. Complexity and design point to a designer. For example, although all the parts of a watch are found on the earth, no one would assume it evolved as the result of natural, unguided actions of chance. Why would we conclude otherwise when we look at the human brain or the human anatomy, which is much more complex?" This is a very simplistic, human oriented view of the natural world. Human ingenuity is no match for the complex designs of nature. A single cell is far more complex in its design and function than the most advance technological breakthroughs humans can ever claim to have created. Organisms are made up of one cell to trillions of cells all working together, thereby becoming even more comlex than a single cell. While in the simple human logic, something must be "created", our logic will never be greater or even near equal to whatever "force" is behind the natural world (of which we are a part of). In order to completly "explain" something, one must completly understand it. We are nowhere near understanding the complexities of ourselves and our environment, therefore we have no right to chalk our existence up to some supernatural force.

"The more we discover about the universe and nature, the more we realize how unlikely it is that this could have all happened by accident. Therefore, the burden of proof is on the worldviews of naturalism and pantheism, which hold to a position of evolution." To the contrary, the more we discover about the universe, the more we discover that things are still "happening". To say something "happened" implies a finality, a completness which is just not present in nature. All the study of the natural world suggests that things are still "happening", still changing, still evolving. As far as evolution goes, well, the evidence needed is there in far greater amounts than any so called "evidence" backing up the Bibles version. I'm sure nothing I can say would influence you in that area, so I'm not goona waste my time.

"Because the Bible is God's WordAmong all the books written by man, none have the credentials that equal the Bible. The second evidence for Christianity is the Bible, which proves itself to be true and divinely inspired." "The Bible declares God is holy and Jesus showed Himself to be holy as well." The rest of the argument basically amounts to "The Bible says its true so it must be true!"

As far as the influence of Jesus on the world, you may not be aware of this, but, most of the world is not Christian! And as far as the "morals" of Christianity go, the majority of historical wars have been fought on the basis of religion esp. in the name of "Christianity", hardly an argument for the "morality" of organised religion.

Although I disagree with your views, I do respect anyone who can make some attempt at an intelligent argument and not lean back on bible thumping and preaching to make their point.






(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 18:55

(Agree/Disagree?)

Yeah, Gar, this is pretty embarassing. Berg said the same stupid shit about how the world is complicated, so God must have made it.

This is your logic: "I know God is real because the Bible says so" "But why should you believe the Bible" "Because it's God's word" I'm sorry, but that's called question-begging or circular reasoning. Take it over to NDN!(reply to this comment

From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 19:53

(Agree/Disagree?)

Hey, quit putting words in my mouth man, I don't know where you got that impression. (did you even read the article?) I am the kind that wants proof and I believe, because of all the evidence I have read, (non-Christian and Christian science) that there is intelligent design. I definately don't believe it just because the Bible says so. (I learned not to do that by growing up in TF.

First of all you have to believe that the Bible is a credible source for information and to do that you have to test it. (Archaeologicaly for one, and science)

Just because people like Berg and many others have misinterpreted it and used it for their own agendas doesn't take away from it's credibility.


(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 20:43

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Since there isn't proof, I'll do you a favor and point out a nice cushy little loophole in your own belief system that'll make you feel a lot better: You're not supposed to look for proof of God's existence, you're supposed to take it by faith, you dumbass. Nowhere is this more clearly evidenced then in the words of the man you think is the son of God: "Blessed are they who have not seen, and yet have believed"

You say "I believe... because of the evidence" That's a contradiction. When there's enough evidence of a fact or hypothesis, you don't believe, you KNOW! Go back to school.(reply to this comment

From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 21:07

(Agree/Disagree?)

Why don't you go back to school you little shithead and learn some manners.

First of all you are taking it out of context and unless you can provide me with a balanced argument it's not worth talking to you. Why don't you go find someone else you think you can push around.(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 21:18

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I don't need to provide you with a balanced argument, your own religion forbids you from having this discussion. Evidence? Don't you think that if God wanted you to be able to win these kinds of arguments he would have put clear, irrefutable evidence of his existence? If you're so insecure of your faith, don't come around here. Go to one of your local Christian youth groups, they'll pamper and nurture it and make sure no critical thoughts or evil boogeymen agnostics with bad manners ever threaten it.

Can I make this any more clear?:::

Christians believe in God by faith.

Heathens look for proof.

You're a heathen, so your entire argument is pointless. (reply to this comment

From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 21:27

(Agree/Disagree?)
and by the way who said I was insecure in my faith...I think you are the one who said you didn't know if God exists or not, that sounds more like someone whois insecure to me. And tell me chapter and book on that theory of "Heathens look for proof" (reply to this comment
From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 21:22

(Agree/Disagree?)
who said this was a heathen site? I didn't read that anywhere?(reply to this comment
from Sir Rantalot
Wednesday, July 30, 2003 - 09:03

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Christianity is a subjective religion, this discussion really is pointless. Here are a few posts I've made the christianity subjectFor the full debate go here: http://www.bluelight.nu/vb/showthread.php?s=&threadid=88341&perpage=25&pagenumber=4


This all sounds good in theory Beanergirl, but history has proven otherwise.

I can easily interpret the bible & believe blacks are cursed, and the best thing to happen to a homosexual is some fire & brimstone raining on his head.

You may mean well, as do all other Christians, but when I talk to Christians about the atrocities their faith is responsible for it's always the 'other' Christians, those who interpreted the bible wrongly, etc. It's starting to get a little pathetic after you hear that so much. Compartmentalizing is a skill Christians are excellent at, ignore the bad, no matter how horrible, exaggerate the good. Never underestimate the power of denial!

The very basis of Christianity is guilt & ignorance, like it or not. You do not question, you do not think, you just believe. A prime example of this is the fall of Adam & Eve in the garden of Eden. So this Christian God puts man on a beautiful paradise, but forbids them to eat from the tree of Knowledge. Then, since god made us intelligent and curious, we ate from it, so God make us feel ashamed of our nakedness?

Then the whole 'Christ paid for your sins on the cross', you were born in sin (product of sexual intercourse, ugg, how horrid!), so as soon as you are born you already have this unpayable debt with God! WTF???

Christianity is a denial of nature, it is a denial of our very human nature: do not indulge in earthly pleasures, you do use your head, you must cover up & be ashamed of your body.

And if you say, "well, it's not a religion, it's a relationship" or "it's only some of the older, less understanding folk in a congregation", then you are in denial. There are verses in the bible in which Jesus promotes and encourages 'the Church', the group(Thou art Peter, and upon this rock shall I build my church, to the endless advice Paul gives in his epistles on how to manage a church). The Christian faith is the Church. I grew up in a Cult, by definition it was a Cult, it was a cult lifestyle, it had everything you would define as a Cult, funny though, the worst thing you could do was call it a cult! Why no, it was a 'missionary organization', or 'a community of end time Christians'. Denial, ever present yet again.

If you are a real Christian, then you cannot accept others having a different faith to yours, and it is your duty as a Christian to convert as many of the heathen to the Kingdom of god as possible (I am the way the truth and the light, no one cometh unto the father but by me. ...Preach the gospel to every creature). How can you see a Buddhist eye to eye when you believe that ultimately he is heathen and wrong?

Beanergirl, I see your point of view & that view of Christianity would be brilliant, I also at one stage tried to reconcile my Christian belief with my lifestyle(drug use, sex before marriage). Christianity is not a ‘personal’ religion, it’s a group thing, it’s do what your elders say, be humble, have a low self-esteem(rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft).

Just as I cannot be apologetic towards communism, national socialism or capitalism because I cannot ignore their history, how can I accept something which has been the cause of so much pain and death? From the millions killed in the name of Christ in the past, to the psychological torture & physical beatings me and peers of mine grew up to, and from which we are still recovering? No one, in their right minds could accept Nazism as a school of thought, due to it’s past history, logically, shouldn’t it be the same with Christianity?

I am not an atheist, as you can see I haven’t pointed out that you cannot prove god exists, or other well articulated scientific points backing evolution. I don’t make assumptions about the infinite, I just long to find peace, a peace I attempted and failed to find in Christ.

___________________________________________

I totally agree there, Sweet-e. Even with Beanergirl’s excellent theological knowledge and research, she has confirmed one of Christianity’s biggest flaws: it’s way too open to interpretation. See how well you can argue pro and contro the idea of hell, using Bible verses as proof? While I find no malice or flaw in Beanergirl’s version on the ‘facts’, I cannot help but remember Bible studies I had as a teen which were also well-backed in scripture, on subjects such as Discipline(an occasional beating was in order), sex(sex was a natural act, wife-swapping was encouraged and in some cases demanded), to seclusion(“what communion hath light[the Family] with darkness[the rest or the world]”). I have yet to meet 2 Christian theologians who have the same idea on god, hell, sin, redemption. In RSA there is yet another flavor: Rhema church believes that if you are not doing well financially then God is angry with you, so financial success = will of God.

I also understand Christianity very well, the very reason why I find Christianity dangerous is it is too open to interpretation. The RIGHT interpretation(non-extremist, beneficial to society) always seems to correspond to the socio-political status quo at the time. Today racism is out, as well as spanking naughty Children(it goes so much with the current ‘stuff them with Ritalin’ view of today), sexual promiscuity is still Christianity’s last bastion of moral belief. How easy could it be for us today to twist the scriptures & thus believe that a new holy war on Islam is due? It’s happened before and it can happen again. Beanergirl, I can see you are an intelligent person, but what about the masses of ignorant sheep who blindly let faith cancel out the little logical thinking thy have left? On an individual level, Christianity may even be positive to one’s personal growth, but as a whole, it is a dynamite of extremism waiting to blow. Yes all religions have they’re dark histories, but you cannot compare the horrors for which Monotheistic religions are responsible, directly or indirectly, to the squabbles for which Buddism, and say Paganism is responsible.

It has always been a vicious cycle with the many flavors over the centuries, from the schism of the Roman Catholic Church, to the birth of Protestantism, to the creation of the Anglican church, to the Puritans and the Separatists that left England for America, to the numerous Cults, Sects, and Christian-tainted NRMs of the past 100 years. They start off with ‘good’ intentions, usually by saying that the current church has departed from the simplicity of Christ, or that they have become slack and departed from the straight and narrow. This small group is persecuted by the established church, in some cases annihilated, if not they gain public consensus and form their own church, who’s greatest selling point is their criticism of the older church. Those evangelicals love having a go at the Catholics, The Family loved having a go at the Evangelicals. All of course, could back their newer, more righteous interpretation from well-selected verses in the Bible, as I see you are doing now.

I am currently reading up on Neo-paganism & Magik. I find this belief system to be less flawed, and most importantly, lacking that dangerous zealotism far too present in the Bible. The many Flavors of Paganism do not waste their time critizing the other flavors, as I see Christians are so good at, no matter how noble their intention. I also can agree much more on their view of nature, life, sin & redemption.

Sweet-E: Try reading the story of Slaine, the Horned God, I find it much more inspiring to reading Genesis, or the Birth of Christ in the Bible. Mind you, after being a Brain-washed cult member, I don’t easily fall for any religion which tries to prove to me they have the truth, I’m you might say I’m allergic, what I find interesting in Neo-Pagan & Thelemic belief is: don’t believe, find out for yourself. I find this view refreshing because for once, a belief system confirms the conclusions I already have come to by myself, instead of me rewiring my ingrained logic to conform to a religious belief/personal relationship with Christ/meditation method I must try to believe in because my parents say so.

____________________________________

Joe Blunted: Shamanism is exactly how Christians would have us believe their religion is, “not a religion, a relationship”, there always is some new prophet in Christianity, be it, Luther, Wesley, Mormon, David Berg, etc, they always end up making the same mistakes they railed against, setting up a cult of personality, which the many dumb sheep love to follow instead of encouraging them to think for themselves, that, as has been stated earlier, is a hindrance to progress.

I’ve already said this in another post and I’ll say it again, stop fighting the drug war on the problems caused by monotheistic religions, stop fighting the symptoms of the disease: racism, religious intolerance, gay bashing, lifestyle choices intolerance, the drug war, sexual insecurity, gender discrimination. Get to the fucking problem: Monotheistic religions! On of the biggest enemies of free-thinking and sensible drug laws is Christianity.

Another analogy I’ve used before has been comparing the Bible to the constitution of a nation, as with Christians the Bible is their code of conduct & ethics, just like a constitution defines our rights and limitations of the state(god) in our regards, the bible defines Gods relationship with his believers: his promises, his laws, his punishments. Imagine if a country’s constitution on one paragraph states, “all men are created equal, the law is the same for every citizen”, then on the next paragraph goes on to say that blacks have a higher tendency to commit homosexual rape & murder, and that they are well predisposed to working as servants. Do you think that country would be free from racial violence? We all know a constitution must be written clearly, so that in no way anyone can twist the wording and infringe upon our rights, it must be foolproof! Can you say this about the Bible?

JoeBlunted, so while you can say that the Bible does not directly preach violence and hatred, you’re in denial if you think it does not have a direct cause-effect link to such violence throughout the centuries.

Individuals are smart, people are stupid, whoever released such a potentially dangerous religion on the masses has a lot to answer for. Can’t believe I wasted 18 years of my life in a religious mental box, and I’m pissed off!

Why do Christians need to congregate? Because it helps to calm their logical minds & keep them from rejecting it due to the pure insanity of it. If you start to doubt, go to your pastor, go to a service, the feeling of camaraderie and being united for the same cause will dispel any doubts creeping up. Stay away from a church & a Bible and watch how quickly you lose faith. They grow you up as kids being taught that the word ‘doubt’ is negative and the word ‘faith’ is good, it gets so ingrained, as soon as you ‘question’ something, you start to feel naughty, dirty, almost like the first time you jerked off or had a wet dream.

I almost might start a thread in which I excuse and defend Nazism, and anything you say against it I’ll counter with, “Hitler was a complex man, he worked in mysterious ways” or “stop doubting your race, how dare you!”
(reply to this comment)

From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 10:36

(Agree/Disagree?)

I guess you have to go back and decide how you believe the world even got here before you argue about religions. Because you can say all you want about the Bible and all it's "flaws" etc... but youv'e got to believe in something, and it seems that you all are more of a relitavist than anything and relitavism destroys itself.

I believe that TF started out Christian (or somewhat) but that Berg gave in to his perverted lusts and decided to make up his own theology to give him the liberty's he wanted. As far as Christianity, I haven't let TF and all it's mixed up theology destroy my faith. I think that is a big mistake that a lot of people make when they leave (and I think it's TF's fault for making it impossible for people to keep their faith in God, if they ever got any in the first place because it's mostly faith in TF that is preached not Christianity)

So that to say, that I don't think you can just throw everything out the window without really learning what the Bible really has to say, not "Bergism". If you want to argue Christianity, KNOW YOUR SUBJECT, because it's not at all what we were taught in TF we were taught "Family-anity" and it's very different. All this stuff about "Christians this" and "Christians do that" is all subjective unless you have a better explanation of the meaning of life. Come on people, we are only here on this earth for about 70 years is that it? Is that all there is???? (reply to this comment

From geo
Sunday, August 03, 2003, 22:44

(Agree/Disagree?)

Are we allowed to say that we dont know? You say weve got to believe in something, people like to say this, i wonder why. Many people i know especial religous people and especialy those "seeking the truth" seem at least uncomfortable if they dont have something to believe in. I guess its a basic human need maybe we feel insecure without solid easily understood answers and beliefs, maybe we get tired of searching or we cant except that we may be unable to find what were searching for. Im not an expert on religion, i dont really think i want to be, but i have seen stuff i liked in the bible and other religions, enough so that i dont ingnore that there may be something to them. But at the same time im much at peace with the insecurity of having very little to believe in, it may be that i havent yet given up on the so called search for truth or that religous hoopla has really become less interesting or less important as my life goes on but i think its that more than anything i refuse to except any substitute for whats real and true no matter how convenient it may seem. i think i would sooner become a herion junky then believe a delusion and spend my life convincing myself it where true. Im not calling christianity or any other belief a delusion but that im just not sure yet. And im able to except that i dont know and possibly may never know.(reply to this comment

From Sir Rantalot
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 03:15

(
Agree/Disagree?)

Gar, read this article on memes(mind viruses):
What are Memes?

The term meme was first used by Richard Dawkins in his 1976 book The Selfish Gene . (Updated and extended in 1989, leaving the original text intact, BUY THIS BOOK, you will not regret it. Published by Oxford University Press.)

Memes are ideas that spread through human cultures and across the generations. The word was invented to suggest a strong analogy with genes. I hope the great man will allow me the liberty of quoting his work at length:-







“I think that a new kind of replicator has recently emerged on this very planet. It is staring us in the face. It is in its infancy, still drifting clumsily about in its primeval soup, but already it is achieving evolutionary change at a rate that leaves the old gene panting far behind.

The new soup is the soup of human culture. We need a name for the new replicator, a noun that conveys the idea of a unit of cultural transmission, or a unit of imitation. 'Mimeme' comes from a suitable Greek root, but I want a monosyllable that sounds a bit like 'gene'. I hope my classicist friends will forgive me if I abbreviate mimeme to meme. If it is any consolation, it could alternatively be thought of as being related to 'memory', or to the French word même. It should be pronounced to rhyme with 'cream.'

Examples of memes are tunes, ideas, catch-phrases, clothes fashions, ways of making pots or of building arches. Just as genes propagate themselves in the gene pool by leaping from body to body via sperms and eggs, so memes propagate themselves in the meme pool by leaping from brain to brain via a process which, in the broad sense, can be called imitation. If a scientist hears, or reads about, a good idea, he passes it on to his colleagues and students. He mentions it in his articles and his lectures. If the idea catches on, it can be said to propagate itself, spreading from brain to brain.”
Richard Dawkins


A meme does not try to be propagated. Neither does a gene. Looking back with hindsight we can see that certain patterns within the meme or the compatibility or otherwise of that meme to the surrounding culture has an impact on the survival of the meme. A meme is just an idea, it has no goals or intentions. A gene is just a chemical, it has no plan to take over the world. That which has what it takes to be replicated will be replicated.

Memes are like viruses of the mind. As they change from host to host they change their physical make-up without losing their defining pattern. Just like a biological virus. When I get "my wife's cold" I am suffering from a virus that is separated by several generations from that which my wife has, it has no molecules in common, just the patterns of arrangement. The virus particles still in my wife neither know nor care that copies of them are now in my body, and being spread to more potential hosts. Likewise there is no payoff to an idea that gets spread, the idea has no real physical existence. A wave has no real existence, it is not any one group of molecules, it is a gross pattern of behaviour of a fluid, but it is a pattern of behaviour that can please the eye, thrill the surf-rider or flood a city. To say that a wave does not exist is not rational, a meme is just as real. You cannot point to it but you recognize it when you see it.

The truth of a meme is irrelevant to the success of the meme. The classic example is the urban folk tale. If URBAN LEGENDS are your thing you should check out this site: The AFU and Urban Legends Archive.

The "poodle in the microwave" story has been passed around for many years because it is a good meme, it is a little bit shocking, a bit revolting, very fascinating and borderline believable. In case you have lived on Mars since the 1970's I will recap the story. Old lady / scatterbrained woman / blonde has a poodle / other small dog / cat which gets wet in the rain / is washed. To dry off the animal the woman (that part is universal) thinks that drying the animal quickly is called for and so into the microwave goes Fluffy / Fifi etc. Often it is claimed that the story is true, the woman is always a friend of a friend or similarly unnamed person. That meme has been going on since the first microwaves came out, I heard it as a boy. But that is a young meme compared to the belief in the afterlife meme or the son of God meme.

Note: I wrote the paragraph above six months before I read Sue Blackmore's book The Meme Machine in which she uses the very same story as the classic example of a meme.







Very little of what appears in the Bible is memetically novel. Noah's flood seems to be a hearsay account of a tribal memory of a catastrophic flood beyond any normal tsunami or deluge. There is a novel theory that it began with the opening of the Bosporus, allowing the waters of the Mediterranean to enter and flood what is now the Black Sea, an area of fertile land surrounding a much lower level large freshwater lake. An event like that is going to be talked about for thousands of years! Whether or not that is true there is a lot of evidence that flood stories abound in the Middle East which predate the Bible account by centuries. The son of God meme naturally has a pre-Christian, non-Jewish origin. Alexander the Great was the first man who encouraged his followers to proclaim his status as the son of a god.

The virgin birth meme began with a biblical mistranslation. The word for 'unmarried woman' was translated as 'virgin'. Whether or not that was a mistake or a calculated deception it certainly had an effect or two on the world. The faith meme is a classic. This meme helps reinforce any other meme it is associated with. It acts just like the AIDS virus, attacking the immune system. By neutralizing logic and reason the faith meme will allow the other memes it is associated with to take a firm hold on the minds of its host. Christianity is a very advanced form of adaptive multi-stranded meme complex. Like many biological viruses it has smaller units within it that soften up the target, spread the "payload" rapidly and at the same time react with ruthless efficiency against any of the brain's immune responses.

None of this should be seen as conspiracy theory, I hardly ever subscribe to them. That which survives and prospers is that which happened to have the necessary qualities. If Christianity was not good at making conversions, absorbing heresies and older beliefs and resisting de-conversion then it would not be as widespread as it is. The College of Cardinals does not sit about planning ways to make their religion more potent or palatable, they believe in it themselves. Misguided fools.


It is quite a common fallacy that if an idea is shown to be a meme that it is somehow either devalued or discredited. The term virus of the mind is too easily imbued with value judgements that are not appropriate. Ideas spread, if they continue to spread they can be seen as memes and analysed in such a way. Memes can be wrong or right, they can be helpful or harmful. In the main memes are probably more beneficial than harmful. For a harmful meme to spread it must be very powerful and tap into our hopes, fears or desires in a powerful way. Harmful memes are sexier study material, it takes more intelligence to explain why the meme for say, aggressive skinhead haircuts, can spread through a society than the spread of the meme for eating Chinese style food. To say that Christianity is a meme is not to say that it is an evil manipulation, it is just to acknowledge that it spreads in ways that are memetic. Seeing value judgements where there should be none is a very common human weakness.

I think that people who have taken onboard the "meme meme" are in danger of misunderstanding what it is all about. It is essential at all times to remember that memes are not real. They do not have a physical existence in the way that genes do. Genes and memes are both replicators but that does not mean that every property of the gene should be expected to find a correlation with the meme. Just as whales and submarines have similarities but also many differences, almost all of their similarities are far from coincidental, but their differences are very important.

Memes have no shape or structure. They are an abstraction. An abstraction in the same way as "crime" is an abstraction but all too real. It is easy to prove that they do not exist because they have no form, but conversely memes are a very good way of explaining and predicting behaviour. Memes are a way of looking at events. When we look at the universe as if memes were real replicators with their own purposes then we can make sense of things that are otherwise hard to explain. I always have to keep thinking "as if" whenever I think about behaviour that has either genetic or memetic advantage. Some writers have obviously taken the idea to heart and are not constantly pointing out that all the meme stories are analogy and abstraction, but I believe that they do understand the point. I fear that many sceptical people, that is people who are sceptical about memetics, do not fully grasp the necessary "as if" step and try and fail to understand memes as physical entities.

For me memes are real, but in a different, abstract, way compared to genes. Genes are just strands of a chemical. They have no intrinsic meaning. Their meaning comes when they are decoded by the cell structures they help to make. This is an exquisite form of "bootstrapping". DNA without a cell is dead. A cell without DNA (or alternative replicator material) is dead. Only when the two are together is there life.

Memes require intelligent and communicating minds. The marks inscribed on the Voyager space probe are just marks until they are perceived by other intelligent minds capable of communication and copying of behaviour. If that ever happens those marks will become memes again, perhaps the most powerful memes of all time.

It is very easy to wilfully disbelieve something that you would prefer not to believe. Many people are very dismissive of memetics and when they do read memetic books they do so in order to pick holes in the arguments. If you doubt my point about wilful ignorance being easy just try the following experiment; look up in an encyclopaedia or technical book how something like a ink jet printer, mass spectrometer, CD ROM or mobile 'phone works, and as you read it try to not believe it, try to doubt every concept. It is very easy to do, if you put the burden of proof on the new idea you can kill it quite easily, it becomes very easy to dismiss any idea that you do not want to understand. This is the way that creation scientists work. They know what the truth is, anything that casts doubt on that truth has to pass their level of credibility, it doesn't stand a chance, any idea that lends credibility to their version of the truth is obviously easily believable.

(reply to this comment

From Gar
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 10:32

(Agree/Disagree?)

Thanks Sir Rantalot I will check it out when I get a minute here.

(reply to this comment

From Gar
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 10:31

(Agree/Disagree?)

Thanks Sir Rantalot I will check it out when I get a minute here.

(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 20:27

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Gar, I'm not in any position to dismiss God. I'm an agnostic, so I just don't know if he's there or not. But I can tell you this - the Bible is a load of crap. You'd be better of running on your life on the adventures of Tom Sawyer - it's a lot less open to interpretation. Go read skepticsannotatedbible.com and see for yourself. (reply to this comment

From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 21:00

(Agree/Disagree?)

Ok, forget about the Bible how can you not believe in God? How can you be an Agnostic when it is foundationless. How can you be so certain that something is so wrong if what you beleive in has no certainties.(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 21:13

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Agnosticism has great foundations - the idea that you'll never be wrong if you know when to say "I don't know." I'm certain the Bible's a bunch of crap because I've read the entire thing and I don't like a lot of what's in there. It's confusing, contradictory, and atrocious. Reread it and see if you're comfortable with a racist, sexist God, who claims to give a crap about his people but lets millions of them die everyday. There is plenty of proof that the loving God you claim exists, doesn't. (reply to this comment
From Sir Rantalot
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 02:38

(
Agree/Disagree?)

Enough with religious and atheist absolutism, hurray for "I'm not sure"!!

This world could use a lot more agnostics, there would be less wars!(reply to this comment

From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 21:21

(Agree/Disagree?)
Just because you don't understand something doesn' make it wrong. That would be like me saying that because I don't understand what that Chinese guy over there just said than it must be wrong. If you don't believe in God than what set your standard for right and wrong, how do you even know that all those 'atrocities" in the Bible are "atrocities" who's to say that they were? you? You see, unless there is a standard to base your belief of right and wrong by, then you cannot judge anything.(reply to this comment
From frmrjoyish
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 22:47

(Agree/Disagree?)
Whoa now, Gar!! If there's one thing people on this site understand its Christianity and the influence of religion on people! It makes people go gaga crazy and argue in favor of things that have no proof!! Christianity does require faith, not proof, otherwise there'd be no christians! "For we walk by faith and not by sight". Sound familiar???(reply to this comment
From Gar
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 23:21

(Agree/Disagree?)

Well, I "believe", due to the proof, and for someone that "doesnt' know", you seem to have pretty strong opinions of right and wrong. Just tell me what you base your sense of justice on. How do you even know that being a child molester is wrong? Who's to say that what a serial killer is doing is wrong? And when you say that all these religious fanatics did all these crazy things and ruined so many peoples lives, according to who's standard are you basing your assumption on. Are we to go according to your opinion as to whats right and wrong? Who's law are we to go by? There is no way that you can sit there and judge anybody? You cannot say one more judgemntal thing until you tell me by which standards you are judging it. Otherwise, it's just your opinion and that's as good as anyones.



you say "ruined thousands of peoples lives, or are/were serial killers and child molesters? Now ask how many religious crazies have gone off and done the same??? Lets start counting......David Berg, about a zillion Catholic Priests, another zillion TV evangelist con artists, Heavens Gate, Jim Jones, Rev. Moon, these new crazy cloning cults,...can anyone think of anyone else????"

An agnostic just admits that they don't know, not claims a bunch of BS that they can't prove!! (reply to this comment) new(reply to this comment

From frmrjoyish
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 01:18

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Do I really need to explain why serial killing is wrong??? Or why Catholic priests shouldn't have sex with little boys??

Who knows where human values and morals originated from?? I don't!! But I do know that they did not originate from Christianity. All throughout recorded history there have been "rules", if you will, and general behaviors that a society has followed in order to work together and function as a group. Of course these vary according to each particular society.

Since humans are social in nature, groups are essential to survival, thus, an individual has a better chance by being a functioning member of society! Of course these behaviors vary according to each particular society. I'm not saying people shouldn't have their own beliefs and individualities, so don't go getting all in a hissy about that! I'm just saying that at the core, humans have to interact with one another, therefore must follow certain guidelines.

I base my "judgemental opinion" on child molesters because they hurt and damage little children emotionally, psycologically, as well as physically!!! The same goes for the Catholic priests who abuse thier position of power and authority over innocent trusting boys causing them emotional and physical harm. I say cult leaders suck because they lead people into ridiculous anti-social behaviors and ways of life, then children are produced with no knowledge of any other life and no choices of their own!

As for myself, I try to live my life by causing as little suffering to people as possible and doing what I determine to be the "right thing" in a given situation. It may differ from yours or someone elses opinion, but so be it.

As far as "not knowing", I was refering to the fact that I am an agnostic. I do not know if there is a God, there may be one, but I don't know! Once its proven to me one way or the other, then I'll change my mind but not until then, anything else is just arrogant asumptions. How's that for a judgmental opinion for you? (reply to this comment

From Joe H
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 00:57

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
So if the Bible provides the only moral code, how come Japan has less crime than most other developed nations? Most of them have never even heard of Jesus or the Bible. I know certain things are right and wrong because I have common sense! I don't need Jesus or Moses or Berg to tell me! (reply to this comment
from frmrjoyish
Wednesday, July 30, 2003 - 01:29

(Agree/Disagree?)

I think the the religion of TF should be called Berganism!

The majority of their teachings and lifestyle come from the teachings of Berg not the teachings of the Bible. True, they do make reference to Jesus every once in a while, like when they're praying for something they want or cursing their own children, but most of the focus is on the writings of their founder, Berg. If they were really dedicated to following the teachings of Jesus in the Bible, why the need for the 3,000+ Mo letters, not to mention the thousands written by Zerby since his death? Even their outreach programs are based on not based on the Bible but on their own pamphlets, posters, singing, performing, etc. everything but the "word of God".

It's somewhat similar to the Mormons, who were based on Christianity but eventually veered off and became so different that they now have their own Bible. Even followers of Islam recognize and follow some of the teachings of Jesus, but that does not qualify them as Christians!
(reply to this comment)

From Wolf
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 08:45

(Agree/Disagree?)
Webster’s definition of “Christian”: a person professing belief in Jesus as the Christ, or in the religion based on the teachings of Jesus

By this definition TF is Christian. I see no reason why a person can’t believe in the writings of Berg and Christ at the same time. In contrast, Muslims are not permitted to believe that Jesus is the son of God.

BTW, though I don’t want to be involved in any organized religion at this time, Mormons are my favorite variant of Christianity.
(reply to this comment
From Joe H
Thursday, July 31, 2003, 01:03

(Agree/Disagree?)

Whoa, whoa, whoa, what the fuck is so great about Mormons? The leaders of that cult need to be taken out and shot!

http://www.bible.ca/mormon.htm(reply to this comment

From frmrjoyish
Wednesday, July 30, 2003, 23:21

(Agree/Disagree?)
Ok, Wolf, I can't argue with Webster!!! I still like my new word better: Berganism...with a side order of Christianity!!!! :)(reply to this comment

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