The Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity – “Christian Values”

The Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity

 

September 9, 2018

 

“Christian Values”

 

Matthew 6:24-34

 

Click here to listen to audio of this sermon.

 

“No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Matthew 6:24-34

 

The value of a commodity is determined by supply and demand.  If there is much of it and few people want it, it won’t be valued very highly.  On the other hand, if there is little of it and many people want it, its price will be high.  The wants of the people and the supply of what they want determine the value of land, houses, cars, food, education, hamburgers, and tacos.

 

People want good food.  They want nice clothes.  Their wants put a value on these things.  It makes sense that people will value necessities of life.  After all, you must eat to live.  You need clothes.  Before you know it, the mild weather will be gone and we’ll have to bundle up to go outside.  Food and clothing are a constant need.  No wonder people worry about them!

 

Jesus tells us not to.  He makes a simple but compelling argument.  Our Father in heaven knows that we need food and clothing.  Since he knows we need these things, we shouldn’t worry about getting them.  After all, if he feeds the birds, won’t he feed us?  We are more valuable than birds.  That’s what God says.  We’re the most valuable thing God created.  We didn’t arise from the slime, evolving over millions of years from some microscopic single-celled organism into a human being.  God created us in his own image.  He created us male and female.  He created us body and soul.  He treasures us so much that he chose to become one of us.

 

To be made in God’s image means that God made us to know him and to love him.  To know God isn’t just to know that he exists.  When we are on vacation up on Gunflint Lake on the border of northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Ontario, we often go for walks in the woods.  We see evidence of bears, sometimes martins, or even wolves.  I have never developed a friendship or personal relationship with a bear, a martin, or a wolf.  That’s the stuff of fairy-tails.  Animals can’t talk.  They are not persons.  People may humanize their dogs and cats, but that doesn’t make them into persons.  They’re animals.  We’re not.  We’re human beings.  We can know God.  They can’t.  God feeds the birds, but the birds don’t know it.  God cares for your dog and cat, but neither Spot nor Puff are capable of knowing God, loving God, or worshipping God.  They take from God what God gives.

 

But even while the birds and the cats and dogs, the bears, the martins, and the wolves do not know God or love God, they do rely on God, whether they know it or not.  The birds don’t worry about food.  They see the food and they eat it.  Where did the worm or the fish or the rabbit come from?  God put them there for the birds to eat.  God provides.  He feeds the birds.  They don’t make clothes.  They don’t build barns.  They rely on the God they cannot know or love.

 

We were made by God to know him and to love him.  So what are we doing then, when we worry about whether we will have enough food to eat and decent clothes to wear?  What are we doing when we worry about our future, the market, the bank account, the retirement fund, job security, decent prices, a decent salary, or any other thing?  We are worshipping a false god.  That’s what we are doing.

 

Jesus says:

 

No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?

 

Pay attention to his words!  He’s not talking about pining after wealth.  He’s talking about worrying about your basic needs.  He’s talking about food, drink, and clothing.  These are necessities of life.  When you worry about the necessities of life you are saying that your Father in heaven isn’t your Father in heaven.  You are worshipping the false god of mammon.  You are a materialist.

 

Materialism and atheism go together.  Atheists living in small town and rural Montana or North Dakota don’t usually advertise themselves.  It’s not socially acceptable to deny the existence of God.  There are places where atheism is quite respectable.  But to worry about whether you are going to have the necessities of life when God has promised to provide them for you is to believe like an atheist.  To worry about whether God will take care of you is to deny God.  It’s to think as if he doesn’t really exist, or if he does, he doesn’t care about us.  Do any of us really think that we know better than God what we need?  Do we really think that we are more capable than God of taking care of ourselves?  To trust in stuff – even the necessities of life – is to not trust in God.  You cannot love and you cannot serve both God and your material possessions.

 

The love of our material possessions is the source of no end of trouble.  St. Paul writes in 1 Timothy 6,

 

Now godliness with contentment is great gain.  For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.  And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content.  But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition.  For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

 

The love of money is idolatry.  We should be content with food and clothing.  Worry isn’t just a lack of faith in the God who will provide.  It is serving money.  Get more and more and more.  Then you won’t have to depend on God.  The reason Western Civilization is falling is because when God made the Europeans and Americans rich, they began to worship all their stuff instead of the God who gave it to them.  The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is ignored.  What used to be known as Christendom has fallen from the faith, worshipping the creation rather than the Creator.

 

If you want to know why churches are shrinking all over America, it’s not so hard to understand.  More and more Americans – especially younger Americans – no longer believe in the God who created them in his image.  They no longer consider God as their Father.  Their notion of God has morphed into something alien and strange.  When he isn’t their Creator he isn’t their judge.  When he isn’t their judge, his law can be ignored.  So people make up their own gods, make up their own laws, and worship what they have made in their own image.  They project on their manmade deities their own ideas, and the number one idea of all humanly crafted religions is that we are good.  The denial of our sin means that there is no such thing as idolatry.  It means that we need not seek God or his rule over us, but that we are, for all practical purposes, our own gods.

 

To which Jesus replies, “Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness.”  You must know God.  You must love him.  Until you know him and love him you are steeped in idolatry.  You worry about stuff you don’t have.  You worry about stuff you do have.  You have no peace, no true joy, and no knowledge of love until you know God as God reveals himself to you.  Where is that?  In his kingdom.

 

The kingdom of God isn’t a place.  It’s Christ ruling over you as King of kings and Lord of lords.  His rule over you is through his Word.  He speaks in the Bible, the book written about him.  He speaks in church through his ministers he sends to preach his word that is written down in the Bible.  By speaking to us he governs us.

 

What does he say?  He talks about his Father.  He says that he and the Father are one.  He reveals the intimate fellowship that exists between him and the Father – this was the topic of our Bible class last Wednesday – the fellowship or communion that exists between the Father and the Son.

 

But Jesus does more than talk.  He acts.  He establishes his kingdom by dying on the cross.  There we see the righteousness of the kingdom.  Now only a sinner who knows he’s a sinner and wants to be good but knows he’s not is going to care about the righteousness of God’s kingdom.  Jesus says this is the first thing we should seek!  The very first.  When you find yourself, a guilty sinner, an idolatrous, self-centered, and doubting sinner, standing in the nakedness of your guilt before God and your divine Judge does not judge you, but turns his eyes away from your shame and looks to his Son’s obedience and sacrifice, and clothes you in that righteousness, then you have found what is truly valuable in life.

 

The kingdom of God and his righteousness are more valuable than food, clothing, money, property, education, health, influence, or the cabin on the lake.  With Christ and his righteousness comes the Holy Spirit.  He persuades our doubting hearts of the faithfulness of our Father in heaven.  Surely if God gives us his only Son and justifies us freely by his grace in Christ, he will give us everything our bodies need.  The Holy Spirit persuades us of this.  He shows us the true treasure of having the forgiveness of sins, peace with God, and the guarantee of eternal life.  From knowing God in Christ, and knowing how much he loves us, we actually know him.  Not just stuff about him.  We know him as he really is.  And we love him.  In God’s kingdom his image is restored in us.

 

Amen.

 

Pastor Rolf Preus

About Pastor Rolf Preus

Pastor Rolf David Preus grew up on the campus of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, the fourth of ten children, where his father, Dr. Robert David Preus, taught for many years. Pastor Preus graduated from high school in 1971, from Concordia College, St. Paul, Minnesota in 1975 and from Concordia Theological Seminary in Ft. Wayne, Indiana in 1979. He was ordained on July 1, 1979, at Trinity Lutheran Church, in Clear Lake, Minnesota. He served Trinity Lutheran Church in Clear Lake (1979-1982), First Lutheran Church in East Grand Forks, Minnesota (1982-1989), St. John's Lutheran Church in Racine, Wisconsin (1989-1997), River Heights Lutheran Church in East Grand Forks, Minnesota (1997-2006), and First American Lutheran Church in Mayville, North Dakota and Grace Lutheran Church in Crookston, Minnesota from (2006-2015). On February 15, 2015 he was installed as Pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church, Sidney, Montana and St. John Lutheran Church, Fairview, Montana. Pastor Preus received his Master of Sacred Theology degree from Concordia Theological Seminary in 1987. His thesis topic was, “An Evaluation of Lutheran/Roman Catholic Conversations on Justification." Pastor Preus has taught courses in theology for Concordia Theological Seminary in Ft. Wayne, Concordia University Wisconsin, and St. Sophia Lutheran Theological Seminary in Ternopil, Ukraine. Pastor Preus married Dorothy Jean Felts on May 27, 1975, in Coldwater, Michigan. God has blessed Pastor and Dort with twelve children: Daniel, David, Paul, John, Mark, Stephen, Christian, Andrew, James, Mary, Samuel, and Peter. David, Paul, John, Mark, Stephen, Christian, Andrew, and James are pastors in the LCMS. God has blessed Pastor and Mrs. Preus with sixty-three grandchildren so far.

Comments

The Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity – “Christian Values” — 28 Comments

  1. The birds don’t worry about food. They see the food and they eat it. Where did the worm or the fish or the rabbit come from? God put them there for the birds to eat.

    Post-Fall, but not pre-Fall. An important distinction. Gen. 1:30.

  2. @Steve Drake #1

    Genesis 1:29-30 just says God gave human beings and animals plants to eat. It doesn’t say animals only ate plants. It doesn’t even really mean all plants (“I have given every green plant for food”) are food for all creatures, since some plants are poisonous for some animals. It’s just a general statement by God that he is giving plants for food.

    In a way, all animals do eat plants–even today. Plants feed herbivores, and carnivores absorb that same energy by eating their prey.

    God made many animals obligate carnivores. They have to eat meat or die. God also endowed many creatures with fangs, venom, defense mechanisms, camouflage, etc. It’s hard for me to see why he would do these things if all animals were originally intended to be gentle herbivores. And the Bible says nothing about God changing plant-eaters to meat-eaters after Adam and Eve sinned.

    It seems to me that God intended some animals to be predators from the beginning of creation. Just part of his plan.

  3. Let me say at the outset of this comment what I should have said in my first comment above to Pastor Preus: excellent sermon on Matthew 6: 24-34 and ‘Christian Values’. I read it with pleasure.

    It was not my intent to derail this excellent sermon with issues of creation, seeing that there was fairly decent discussion of that in the post “A Day is a Day is a Day” by Dr. Edmon last month.

    This is still my intent, so James, while your post #2 is inconsistent and incorrect, and I would be happy to go back and forth with you and show you your inconsistency with Scripture, perhaps we can wait until another post on “Creation” to discuss these issues.

  4. @Steve Drake #3

    If you didn’t want to “derail” the sermon with issues of creation, why did you bring one up?

    Just like last time, you never clashed with the substance of what I wrote.

    In that “fairly decent discussion,” you called me a blasphemer, a troll, and an idolator. So don’t call me James as if you were my friend. And you’ve obviously ruled out the possibility of my being a Christian brother.

    You want to straighten me out. No, thank you.

  5. @ James Gibbs #4,
    It is the height of hypocrisy to claim that I never discussed or dealt with the substance of what you wrote, due to the fact that you never wrote any substance. You not only mocked and denigrated the Word of God, but tried to influence a child of God to not believe the Word of God. A blasphemous act. You are seriously outside the bounds of orthodoxy on this issue, out of bounds with Luther, out of bounds with the Lutheran Confessions, and out of bounds with Church history. You are propagating false teaching, false doctrine, and a false gospel, and must stop. Disciplinary action is required.

  6. @Steve Drake #5

    “You never wrote any substance.”

    Sure, I did.

    Look at my first comment (#2): I disagreed with your notion that birds didn’t eat worms, etc. before the Fall by mentioning (a) Gen. 1:29-30 doesn’t rule out carnivory, (b) some plants are poisonous for some animals, (c) carnivores get energy from plants indirectly, (d) obligate carnivores, (e) animals’ attack and defense mechanisms, and (f) no mention in Scripture of God changing herbivores to carnivores.

    Those are six arguments against “no carnivory before the Fall.” Agree with them or not, you can’t say “You never wrote any substance.”

    And in the “A Day is a Day is a Day” comments, I gave the examples of Henry Morris, Duane Gish, Kurt Wise, and Ken Ham to back up my point that YEC “scientists” are hopelessly biased, and cannot be trusted to give real scientific evidence on the age issue. If you like, I can share links to the articles.

    You just said, in essence, “You never wrote any substance.”

    But I did.

    (And you still never clashed with my comments. On either article.)

    I also never knocked the Bible. All I made was two limited points: (a) don’t go to creationists for good science (advice to “Dan”), and (b) the Bible doesn’t rule out carnivory before the Fall. In fact, I went out of my WAY to say that if you believe the Bible demands a young earth, then believe it–and God bless you. I did not say, “Don’t believe in a young earth”–I said “Don’t base your faith in a young earth on bogus YEC science,” which is something I believed even when I was a YEC.

    I never tried to tell “Dan” to not believe the Bible. I just advised him to not base his view of Genesis on shoddy science. Why is that such a problem for you?

    And, by the way–you really, really ought to knock off the “blasphemy” stuff. You accuse me of that as freely as President Trump accuses his critics of being “traitors.”
    Why not just say you think I’m wrong? Does every Christian you encounter with doctrine different from yours get called a blasphemer? If so, you must have absolutely no non-Lutheran friends!

    “Disciplinary action is required”–wow. That reminds me of When Harry Met Sally: “Call a cop–it’s out there!”

  7. @James Gibbs #6

    James, you’re appeal to Genesis 1:29-30 DOES rule out carnivory. When Luther said things let “let Scripture interpret Scripture” and “plain reason”, this is it. The most basic and straight forward reading of the text is exactly what Steve says. PRE-FALL. Your eisegesis is so blatant I don’t know if I should laugh at it’s obnoxiousness, our feel deeply sad because you believe it so strongly.

    When many of us express this concern, it is because the appearance of your words and argumentation lead us to believe that you have very little faith in the Words of God. It is beyond ignorance. It is a hardening of the heart. You do this every single time you post here, and we are concerned for your soul. You refuse to be taught. While we may not see your heart, we can see your fruit, and it is bad.

  8. @Jason #7

    If you’re so concerned for my soul, why don’t you pipe up and defend me when people call me all kinds of names liked troll and idolator? When people judge and condemn me as practically an unbeliever? I’ll believe you care when you act like it.

    Do you really think every old-earth Christian, past and present, has “very little faith in [the Bible]”?

    Do you think the 300-odd delegates to the Synodical convention in July who voted to amend the creation resolution by removing the word “natural” have “very little faith in [the Bible]”?

    Look at my first comment (#2). Explain to me how I am wrong–how my six reasons were wrong–if you want me to “be taught.”

    Like Drake, you spend all your time talking about what a terrible guy I am, instead of actually clashing with my arguments.

    Have a pleasant day.

  9. We see a connection developing, and the false teaching must be rooted out. The fruit, as Jason #7 writes, is corrupt. Thank you Jason, for underscoring this. We have an example for us in the fortune-telling slave-girl of Acts 16:16-18. A pernicious tool of Satan to thwart the message and Word of God through Paul. Can unwitting Christians be used of the devil? One only has to read Matt. 16:23. Apropos in that we see a mind not set on the things of God, but on man’s.

  10. @Steve Drake #9

    Re-read my comments above (#2 and #6). You STILL have not even tried to refute my points. And YOU’RE the guy who once said, “If you wish to present your arguments, then please do so, and we can debate them here.”

    That was Aug. 16th. I’m still waiting for you to really answer my (very limited) points…

    “Tool of Satan”–again, just…wow.

    Reminds me of when YEC folks compare those who disagree with them with Satan (!) asking Eve, “Did God really say…” Which is an “argument” ANYONE could use against ANYONE who disagreed with them about ANY issue of Biblical interpretation!

    I believe in the Trinity, in the deity of Christ, in his bodily resurrection, in salvation by grace through faith, in the Real Presence of Christ’s body and blood in the Lord’s Supper…but because I think God took billions of years to create our world, I am beyond the pale, apparently. According to you.

    So a Christian who disagrees with you on whether or not tigers and sharks ate meat before Eve ate the apple…is like the demon-possessed enslaved girl in Acts 16? That’s just silly.

    And I DO have my mind set on the things of God. “Not bearing false witness” is a thing of God, and I don’t want to say, “Science shows the earth is young”–when it doesn’t. (You may disagree with my assessment of the science, but I would be lying if I said I believed the science supports a young earth.)

    Another thing of God is “sharing the Gospel.” I do think that, for some people, YEC is a stumbling block to belief, so I would like people to know that a YE is not the only Biblical option out there.

    I also think it is possible for Christians to disagree without being disagreeable. Try it sometime. Amping up the vitriol really, really doesn’t persuade anyone.

    If you truly think the Bible demands you believe in a young earth and neither animal death nor carnivory before 4,000 B.C., etc.–God bless you.

  11. I believe humans, plants, animals, stars, time, space and age all changed after the Fall when sin/death entered the paradise world/universe. The Bible does lend to that conclusion. Science, the intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment, may not necessarily always line up with that for it is practiced by fallen humans. Many scientific ‘facts’ have changed over the centuries. I am perfectly content with that because, by faith, God’s Word the Bible supersedes and bestows God’s blessings so as not to get overwhelmed by mysteries but to embrace them in Christ. So, biblically, is the creation relatively young? Yes. Does it scientifically often test old? Yes. So be it.

  12. @Robert K #11

    God bless you in your faith. In the end, trusting in Christ is the most important thing any of us can do.

    Obviously, I don’t agree with the Bible requiring us to believe in a young earth, but many people have struggled with these issues over the centuries and have come to different conclusions. Even the church Fathers disagreed over these things. Just because I think I’m right, that doesn’t mean I couldn’t be mistaken!

    If you have found an explanation that strengthens your faith, God bless you.

  13. First, from post # 4 this:

    You want to straighten me out. No, thank you.

    Then, from post #10, there’s this:

    You STILL have not even tried to refute my points.

    So, I’m confused. Does James want to learn something, or does he not? It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter at all. No matter what anyone says, he refuses to be chastened, to reflect, to rethink his position, because he’s convinced that he is not wrong. So no matter what I write, or anyone writes, to defend the orthodox position on Creation and its implication of a young universe and earth, James like Jannes and Jambres of 2 Tim. 3:8 who opposed Moses, opposes the truth, and is of corrupt mind. He is promulgating false teaching.

    But James is being deceptive, is he not? He’s hiding something. He’s hiding his allegiances. Who is he allegiant to? Is he a BioLogos man, who believes that God used evolution to bring about the biodiversity of life over millions and millions of years? Perhaps he is a Hugh Ross man, believing that God plunked down de novo the biodiversity of life at certain stages corresponding to the geologic column over millions and millions of years. Perhaps James believes in neither one of the above, but in one of the other compromise views of creation that have arisen in the past couple hundred years. All attempting to fit and cram and find room for the billions and millions of years that aren’t there, somewhere in Genesis.

    But James won’t tell us which man he is, will he? He hides behind one of them, with no backbone to declare which one it is: his allegiance.

    So it will do no good to explain anything to James. No good to tell him he is impugning the glory and majesty and beauty and marvelously engineered design of God and of a perfect and functioning creation with no sin and death, no disease and corruption, no carnivory and bloodshed, no natural evil or any hint of injustice and capriciousness prior to Adam’s sin. He won’t believe it.

    It will do no good to tell James that his belief in deep time and the billions and millions of years and the accompanying death, destruction, bloodshed and natural evil of the geologic column is a direct assault on the character of God, and is repugnant to the utterly pure and unblemished stain-free Holiness of God. He won’t believe it.

    It will no good to explain to James that to charge Christ in His work of creation with infusing, designing, allowing, into His Creation, the death of His creatures through cancer, tumors, disease, carnivory, bloodshed, natural evil such as megaquakes, tsunamis, huge meteorite impacts, hypercanes, and mass extinctions, is a charge against Christ of the foulest evil. An evil of monstrous proportions. Try to tell him that this is blasphemy against Christ. He won’t believe it.

    He needs to be turned out, delivered to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus (1 Cor. 5:5).

  14. So, when paradise is restored, hundreds of bilyuns of years from now, give or take, will we still have to keep lions in cages?

  15. Hey, Jason–here’s your chance to show your concern! Steve Drake is now calling me corrupt, deceptive, and a coward. “Defend [me], speak well of [me], and put the best construction on everything.” Show me how much you care! (Crickets.)

    St. Stephen, Carl Sagan was a brilliant astronomer who helped millions become interested in and excited about science through his TV programs and books. He achieved a lot. And that crack about his pronunciation of “billions” is a nearly-40-year-old joke. You sure showed him!

    Steve Drake–my original comment (#2) was about carnivory before the Fall. I gave six reasons why I think there was carnivory before the Fall. In four subsequent comments, you never answered any of my six points. I win!

    You think cancer, etc. before the Fall impugns God’s character. Telling people the world looks old but is really young (a form of gaslighting, btw) impugns his character, too. It makes God out to be a deceiver. Maybe God is bigger than either of us can comprehend–what a concept!

    Also, blaming all natural evil on the Fall doesn’t really solve anything. If a little kid dies of cancer as a “punishment” for the sin of Adam, that is still God doing it. I doubt the parents would find that very comforting. Why not just admit that natural evil is a mystery? God wants to comfort us in sorrow, not explain it. Theodicy is our invention, not his.

    No one appointed you an apostle (like Paul in 1 Cor. 5:5), so no one is going to listen to your urging my excommunication. Try taking yourself a little less seriously.

    Again, all I am is a Lutheran who thinks God took billions of years to create. Like many famous (and not-so-famous) Christians past and present. Not some arch-heretic.

    I argued that God let birds eat worms and bugs before the Fall, and you want to declare World War III.

    I now understand emotionally why two of my brothers want nothing to do with the church. Probably because of guys like you.

    Have a nice life!

  16. @Steve Drake #16

    I asked you not to use my first name. You keep doing it. Either you can’t read, you’re stupid, or you like being a jerk. Stop using my first name!

    What am I “hiding”–you really need to get out more. You know I believe in an old earth.

    As far as what I think about Hugh Ross or BioLogos–who really cares except you? I’m sure you are just DYING to let everyone know why either (or both) organizations are terrible, horrible, no good, and very bad.

    Hugh Ross seems like a very nice, Christian gentleman. He believes in tolerance and compromise. Horrors!

    Francis Collins founded BioLogos. He also seems like a very nice, Christian gentleman. I know he befriended the famous atheist Christopher Hitchens when Hitchens was dying of cancer, and showed genuine care for him. He is also the head of the National Institutes of Health, and was head of the Human Genome Project. A very eminent scientist, indeed. He says he became a Christian by reading C.S. Lewis, who I also admire.

    As far as “allegiance,” I only pledge allegiance to the Flag. I don’t use that word about anything else, as far as I know.

    What is your problem?

    (I’m sure you will let us all know.)

    Get a life, creep.

  17. @ James Gibbs #17,

    Is that you hiding behind that bush, James? Peek-a-boo! Who’s your deep-time daddy? You are peddling false teaching (an egregious sin) and are unrepentant about it. Take your false nonsense and peddle it elsewhere.

  18. @Steve Drake #16

    Look, Drake–I take back calling you a creep. Christians shouldn’t name-call.

    We obviously are not persuading each other. So let’s call it a day.

    If you’re right about Genesis, I hope I change my mind in the future to agree with you.

  19. @ James Gibbs #19,

    Stop being deceptive then. Stop hiding. You obviously don’t believe the traditional and orthodox view of a 6-day 24-hour day creation and concomitant young universe and young earth, so tell us which view you support.

    You praise both Francis Collins and Hugh Ross, yet the views that each man and their organization espouses are not the same.

    Are you a theistic evolutionist like Francis Collins and his BioLogos organization, or are you a day-age creationist like Hugh Ross?

    Come clean James, and then I look forward to the opportunity that perhaps we can have a productive dialog.

  20. @Steve Drake #20

    Gosh-DANG, you are annoying!!

    My last comment was an olive branch.

    But did you take it? No. You had to double-down, continuing to be rude (“James”) AND insulting (“Stop being deceptive”).

    Did it ever occur to you that I believe the earth is old, but I am simply not sure which “view” of how to reconcile the Bible and science I “support”?

    For the final time: you never have answered ANY of my arguments (see my comment above #6). But you have called me a lot of ugly names.

    “Productive dialog”–don’t make me laugh. To you, that means I listen while you lecture me and tell me what a misguided soul I am.

    Good luck learning some people skills.

  21. @ James Gibbs #21,

    My last comment was an olive branch.

    That was an olive branch? A fake one, right? An obsequious attempt to placate the exposure of your false teaching so that you can continue to peddle your false nonsense at another time and place.

    Did it ever occur to you that I believe the earth is old, but I am simply not sure which “view” of how to reconcile the Bible and science I “support”?

    Bingo! You hit the lotto right there, James, saying more in one statement than you’ve said in all your previous posts. Hiding behind “I’m not sure”, “I don’t know”, “I’m still waiting for more evidence to come in”, is more of the same self-serving deception you’ve employed thus far.

    Rejecting what’s written in the Word of God, you’re like the babe in Christ, still drinking milk, not having attained to the measure of the mature man (1 Cor. 3: 2-3). Fleshly, theologically light, like the natural man who does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them (1 Cor. 2:14).

    Rightly does Paul write: “Ever learning, but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Tim. 3:7).

    Claiming not to have a position on Genesis, but continuing to push your false narrative of an old earth and animal carnivory and bloodshed before sin, when Scripture clearly proves just the opposite, is like the Emperor who thinks he’s wearing his finest digs, but even a child can see he’s walking around buck nekid. You ain’t fooling anybody. What did God do to you, that you disrespect Him like that?

    For the final time: you never have answered ANY of my arguments (see my comment above #6).

    Right, sure. Rejecting the clear teaching of Scripture, you huff and puff, bloviating with false pride as if you can’t do a little research yourself and find answers to the questions. Read Luther’s commentaries on Genesis. Read the early Church fathers. Do a little historical research; don’t be a lazy layperson, who claims he’s a Christian but doesn’t know the first thing about his Christian doctrine.

    Stop the false teaching. Peddle it elsewhere.

  22. @Steve Drake #22

    Hey, Drake–I’ve thought some more about my last reply to you. I’ve decided I have more to say to you.

    When someone asks you to NOT use their first name, you need to COMPLY. I hope you don’t act this rude to people in person, or you are going to get punched in the nose some day.

    Also–STOP insulting me, STOP ascribing evil motives to everything I say, and STOP being a rude jerk!!

    And you don’t know me. You think I am lazy and ignorant about the Bible, about theology, and about science. Nothing I can possibly say will convince you of how wrong you are.

    Look back at my initial comment (#2). You claimed birds didn’t eat worms, etc. before the Fall. I gave six reasons why I disagreed. I did not attack you personally–I simply gave reasons for why I disagreed with you.

    You have NEVER responded (in eight comments) to ANY of my points. That tells me you can’t!

    Your “response” is to attack me personally and accuse me of blasphemy, deception, etc., etc. YOU’RE the one huffing and puffing!

    As George MacDonald said, truth is truth–whether from the lips of Christ or Balaam. Christians should be honest and fair-minded, and should be willing to say, “You have a point”–even to enemies of the faith!

    You are like too many creationists. Ascribe vile motives to your opponents, so you don’t have to confront whether or not what they SAY has any validity. You’re actually AFRAID there really is evidence of an old earth, evolution, etc.!

    Here’s a great example (I was actually afraid to read this webpage when I was a YEC): http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/compare.html. I challenge you to read it!

    I have had civil interactions with creationist Christians, here and elsewhere (Paul Edmon, notably). Too many times, though, they are rude and insulting–like you. Schoolyard bullies!

    I interact with OEC and TE Christians, and they are unfailingly polite and gracious. And this is in addition to the facts and the science being overwhelmingly on their side.

    Get lost, Drake. You’re mean.

  23. Is James Gibbs a YEC creationist shill? Or an OEC troll? If the latter, he trolls a blogsite dedicated to the Truth of God’s Word, and to a steadfast adherence to Biblical doctrine of the whole of Scripture, parading his ignorance of even the most basic of Christian doctrine. Professing to be wise, he is a fool. Lacking even the rudimentary principles of his Christian faith, he besmirches and bemoans and mocks those who do. He plays the victim card like it’s the joker in Five-Hand Jokers Wild poker, often and frequently, whenever it suits his game and he can use it to his advantage.

    If the former, and he’s really a YEC shill, then let me know guys and gals, and we’ll stop this merry-go-round.

  24. Comment Policy:

    “Do not engage in ad hominem arguments. We will delete such comments, and will not be obligated to respond to any complaints (public or private ones) about deleting your comments.

    “Interaction between people leaving comments ought to reflect Christian virtue, interaction that is gracious and respectful, not judging motives. If error is to be rebuked, evidence of the error ought to be provided.”

    Would it be more appropriate to exchange personal comments via private messaging?

  25. While deep-time idolators continue to praise Darwin, there is an interesting and informative article at Creation and Evolution Headlines, crev.info, located here: https://crev.info/2019/10/darwin-got-it-wrong/

    Crev.info has a host of great articles countering the millions and billions of years of Charlie and Charlie (Lyell & Darwin), and is a great place to keep abreast of current moy-boy tricks and treats.

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