Christianity Politics USA

The Kitchen Table 33 – Civic Religion.

On this weeks Kitchen Table Steve and I discuss my earlier article on Civic Religion 

The Kitchen Table 32 – Judgement Day

This is the song I mentioned….

358 comments

  1. There is a lack of focus on teaching doctrine and morality and this is reflected in the behaviour and lifestyle of the clergy.

    1. I am one of those who had to leave. They are all failing in this regard:

      “2 Timothy 1:13-14 NIV
      What you heard from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching, with faith and love in Christ Jesus. Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you—guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us.”

  2. Titus 1:9

    He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.

    So the “word as taught” is our yardstick for sound doctrine. The BrisAngs rejects the “word as taught” and reject the entire notion of doctrine and believe they are above rebuke. 😞 This is despite the fact that:

    2 Timothy 3:16

    “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness”

    Since they do not believe this claim, how can they believe anything in Scripture? They believe human reason instead and that all scripture and morality is culturally conditioned (hence, moral relativism) and NOT the clear, eternal, unchanging Spirit-breathed word of God. They believe by himan readon and science they can determine what God really meant that was kept hidden from our ancestors who misunderstood and God allowed to persecute homos because the ancient scribes and prophets could not clearly discern God’s message to us. Only in our enlightened, scientific age can we apparently discern that same-sex relationships are moral and
    safe (despite all the evidence about health risks to the contrary). Funny that the BrisAngs’ interpretations of morality concur exactly with current worldly morality, particularly that of a leftist bent.

    Hebrews 13:9

    9 Do not be led away by diverse and strange teachings, for it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace, not by foods, which have not benefited those devoted to them.

    Again, without a yardstick, how do we know what is strange? Did Borg, Spong or the Jesus Seminar ever answer this basic question or did they just write Paul off as not the Word of God?

    Titus 2:1

    But as for you, teach what accords with sound doctrine.

    A bit hard when these people don’t even believe in Doctrine, thus they write off huge parts of the N. T. as meaningless to us today.

    I’ll stick with Paul, Luther and Calvin.

  3. By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. And this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming; and now it is already in the world.

    — 1 John 4:2–3

    Many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh; any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist!

    — 2 John 1:7

    So these Progs confess Christ has come in the flesh but whether their conception of the Christ (“anointed one”) is God incarnate or not is left VERY ambiguous in their teachings.

    What they do deny though is that the Resurrection is of the flesh. I’d say they are skating on very thin ice with their claims and John’s words may well spply to them.

    Give me the sure, firm foundations of Biblical Christianity any day over these dubious new American theologies and the anti-intellectual BrisAngs promoting them and them.

    I confess Christ, the Son of God, came in the flesh, was crucified in the flesh, was raised in the flesh and will come again in the flesh.

  4. It is interesting to consider just how many pains the Gospel writers go to to emphasise the physical, bodily nature of the Resurrection: the descriptions of the empty tomb, the folded linens, the stone rolled away, the guards and so on. What is the logic to this according to these heretical priests who argue it is all just a metaphor? A metaphorical account would focus on transcendence. The risen Jesus we see has transcendental elements, to be sure, but He also offers to let Thomas put his hands in His wounds and is not above doing earthy things like barbecueung fish on a beach. What on Earth is metaphorical about that?It just shows what very, very poor students of literature these false priests are.

    No wonder they deny the importance of doctrine too since Christian doctrine emphasises the absolute centrality of the Resurrection and refutes so many of the speculative claims of these priests. They have to reject huge chunks of the Bible as one thing leads to another – denying one part, as they do, subsequently breaks the logic of several others, then when they deny some other part, the flow-on effects continue until they render most of the Bible irrelevant in their quest to redesign the religion to suit their modern secular mores, filling the gap left with New Age mumbo jumbo. Not only are they ashamed of the ancient, unchanging truths, their own morals have slipped so that they are as unethical and disingenuous as the worldly people around them. There is no longer any distinction.

    Thank goodness there are so many logical flaws in their arguments their anti-intellectual Liberal Catholicism/Progressive Christianity are readily apparent. Do they really believe that they alone have discovered how to interpret the Bible correctly after 2000 years and that they know more than the Early Church parishioners to whom the texts were addressed? Their approach leaves vast chunks irrelevant and, strangely enough, leaves only those parts that validate modern secular morality on issues like SSM. Why do they consider themselves followers of Jesus if they do not believe or cannot be sure of most of what He said? He becomes a nebulous, blank canvas figure on which they can project their own beliefs and, strangy enough He becomes a hippie SJW failed social reformer, just like these priests… In the meantime, they purposely ignore all of the serious research going on into the Gospels and cling to the beliefs fringe cranks like Marcus Borg and John Shelby Spong who were considered a joke in serious academia.

    At least Bower is honest in admitting he is diesn’t believe in the God of the Bible. These Jesus Seminar-inspired BrisAng cranks don’t even have enough integrity to admit they are not Christians. I just feel sorry for the people they are dragging down to Hell with them.

  5. Spot on, Anonymous Rhinoceros.

    It reminds me of what a medieval Roman Catholic cardinal said about the Bible: I know not this book but I perceive that everything written in it is against us.

    It is right to criticise these people for:

    “If I profess with loudest voice and clearest exposition every portion of the truth of God except that little point which the world and the Devil are at that moment attacking, I am not confessing Christ, however boldly I may be professing Christ. Where the battle rages, there the loyalty of the soldier is proved, and to be steady on all the battlefield besides, is mere flight and disgrace if he flinches at that point.”
    –Martin Luther

  6. I just read your friend McAlpine’s Christmas message in the link in your latest blog post. He sums it up nicely:

    “Slattery would be served well by having a chat with his fellow intellectual and philosophical traveller, the English writer and thinker, Douglas Murray. Murray observes that many of his formerly atheist, intellectual friends are turning to Christianity in these times of crisis and the absence of meaning in the West.

    And what forms of Christianity are they turning to? Not the liberal, disembodied, mystical version founded by the likes of Schleiermacher et al, but the crunchy forms such as Orthodoxy in which Christ really did rise from the dead, and for whom the church is larger than the world.

    [edit for brevity]

    Slattery… in his call for consumeristic Westerners to centre themselves on the mystical within the Christmas message… ends with this:

    ‘This is a challenge for all people who sense that they are on a spiritual, though not necessarily a religious, search. The challenge is to raise and enlarge the self, to move the mysteries at the periphery of daily existence to the core of consciousness.’

    Enlarge the self? Surely that’s the exact problem that the historical event of Christmas came to resolve. We are all for enlarging ourselves. Ever since our first parents reached out to be like God.

    The vitality of the Christmas story is the God of the universe who, rather than enlarge himself (an impossible task) shrank himself to the perspective of a helpless baby…”

    https://stephenmcalpine.com/sorry-luke-most-christians-do-believe-in-christs-miracles/

    Spot on and it shows how the Progressive Christianity forces are actually at odds with both intellectuals and popular currents. Their warmed over, Americanised, liberalism fails to meet the spiritual needs of our time and reveals itself ti be nothing but a cult of the self, concerned with personal transcendence, transforming this world in the image of one’s self, pushing one’s personal political agenda, etc. It vlaims to be about social justice and helping the other but it is nothing but a vanity project for a group of priests and priestesses who can barely conceal their disdain for the Bible, and orthodox Christian morality and the doctrines of traditional faith. They may claim not to be atheists but their beliefs are so far removed now from doctrine, faith and Biblically-defined beliefs that the only people that believe that are they themselves. They have tricked themselves onto the fast path to Hell. The tragedy is these false preachers are taking down other people – their small cult following – with them while, ironically, the former atheists in McAlpine’s article are, thankfully, turning to a strong orthodoxy instead, for which we can praise the Lord in great thankfulness.

  7. I just learnt the famous N. Z. bishop and honorary Quaker, Paul Oestreicher, is an agnostic.

    https://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/words-wisdom-dedicated-nz-pacifist

    He also once claimed that Jesus was probably gay.

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/commentisfree/belief/2012/apr/20/was-jesus-gay-probably

    It seems to me that promotion of homosexuality almost seems to grow in inverse proportion to diminishing belief in God.

    How Oestreicher can be an Anglican bishop when he isn’t even convinced God exists is beyond me. He sounds like another Bower. No wonder the church is in such a bad state when the powers-that-be promote people who don’t even hold to the most basic of their beliefs. . I’m surprised the BrisAngs didn’t headhunt him for a position. It sounds like he’d fit right in there.

    It seems obvious to me that the only reason the Progressive Christianity and Jesus Seminar crowd have come up with the innovation of reading most of the Bible as myths and meyaphors when this has NEVER historically been the case us because they lack belief that these things could have historically occurred. If some early Christians had read the books as metaphorucal, they might have a point but they are asking us to believe that all of the early Christian writers from the crude scrawlings of Mark to Matthew to a semi-literate fisherman like Paul, to the polisged prose of Luke were completely misunserstood by their original audiences and everyone subsequent to them – including the most sophisticated theologians throughout history – until “genius” fringe thinkers like Spong and Borg came along and recovered the original meaning to enlighten us all. Ludicrous. Never mind the fact that the Jesus Seminar had a clearly stated agenda to debunk Christianity. Never mind slso that reading the texts as metaphorical leaves them an incoherent mess.

    To change the topic, last night, I listened to a recording of one of Doctor Martin Lloyd Jones’ ancient Christmas sermons. He spoke of how no one was naive enough to believe the world could be changed into a utopua by politics anymore. With their focus on social justice at the exclusion of the basic tenets and doctrines of the faith, I guess the Progressive Christianity movement didn’t get the memo. With little to no belief in a personal God, the Bible or the afterlife, social justice political activities are all these fringe theologians have left to them. It is sad in a way because they’ll never affect any real change because their causes are so fringe but that is all they have left of their religion – a naive hope they can make things better (from their subjective perspective) in the short time we spend in this world, through radical leftist activism and groupthink.

  8. I think a lot of the problems are due to H. R. issues. To be hired as a priest in ACSQ, it seems like you have to be one of the most radical of radical leftists these days. Better yet if you are also gay or transgender. Normal people need not apply and heaven help you if you actually believe what is written in the Bible. Anyone with normal Christian values and views is identified and expelled in training at Saint Francis’ Theological College. As a result, the priests that graduate cannot relate to ordinary people in the pews with mainstream views. Eventually, all of the normal parishioners leave as the priests push their bizarre political and social agendas around mormalizing homosexuality, transgenderism, the environment and so on and marginalise those who hold normal Christian beliefs.

  9. Re: Saint Francis Theological College at one synod-would’ve been circa 2009-someone tried to move a motion that would’ve launched an enquiry into the school . Bishop Holland had the numbers to turn every clause of the motion criticizing the college into a clause commending it. I never trusted him again after that bit of politics.

  10. Someone put a very good comment about the mess on another site:

    “How can we truly say we truly love the homosexuals in our communities, when when we do not tell them the truth? The so-called progressive leaders (Apostates) such as the the very Reverend Peter Catt in Brisbane are in error and are leading so many astray.

    I believe, they are the ones who are instrumental in pushing same- sex marriage, today and belching “conservative Christian you are out of touch, you do not speak for me!” (Apostate leaders are you aware that some of the LGBTQI do not want you to speak for them either? The do not want same-sex marriage legalised and are very happy in their recognised civil unions?)

    God’s Word does not change. My heart is breaking. How much more does it break our Heavenly Father’s heart.”

    https://billmuehlenberg.com/2017/08/10/apostates-destroying-churches/

  11. The Apostles’ Creed specifically refers to “the resurrection of the body“, so the composers of that text were clearly NOT thinking of the Resurrection as a metaphor.

    Of course, the Apostles’ Creed also refers to the virgin birth and the ascension, which these people consider metaphorical, too.

    If the Creed is a basic test of Orthodoxy, then clearly this form of Anglicanism lies outside the definitional boundaries of Christianity. I do not say that lightly.

  12. The time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires; and will turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to myths. (2 Timothy 4:3-4).

  13. I’m glad to see people tell the truth about the Anglican Diocese of Brisbane. Here is a small thought of mine. Regarding the injunction of Jesus to resist not evil, Wikipedia says “R. T. France … notes that the word translated as resist, anthistemi, has a far more restricted meaning in the original Greek. The word translates more accurately as “do not resist by legal means”. Schweizer notes that this is how the word is used in Deuteronomy 19:18 and Isaiah 50:8. To France, and many other scholars, this verse is just one part of a discussion of legal principles, similar to the previous and subsequent verses.” This being the case why does ACSQ have so many lawyers and utilize legal threats and court cases against so many opponents?

  14. Thanks for your blog entry on the passing of Mandela. My Souh African friends here in Australia think it is accurate.

    https://theweeflea.com/2022/01/04/tutu-saint-or-sinner-tutu/

    Catt is of course gushing over him. His Anglo-Catholic extreme liberalism is a good match for the BrisAng mentality.

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/139q-wK6oYlVcnR3dSkc1Z1rTE9irduCP/view

    A very unusual view of blasphemy from Catt and an interesting quote from Tutu putting himself above God on the issue of homosexuality.

    ‘The incarnation begins with us’? Seriously? Sounds very New Age. Surely it begins with a God who is prepared to come down to us not us looking for light and goodness in ourselves to love ourselves more. Rather should we not focus on God’s love for us and His Son’s life of example and death of self-sacrifice as a way of defeating our selfish desires and teaching us instead to love our neighbour and put him first?

    It is disturbing to read Catt trying to talk about justice and trying to gain the moral high ground when he is one of the most injustice and hypocritical churchmen I’ve ever encountered, sadly. Is he trying to convince others or himself?

  15. Parishioners in ACSQ churches should earnestly reflect and pray on these words.

    “And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues” – Rev. 18-4

    God gives us plentiful warnings in Jude and Revelation, to name just two sources, of what He will do to churches that do not faithfully uphold His Word. I pray Brisbane Anglicans will heed these words and leave their fallen church before they are led astray by its false teachings.

    1. Here is someone on a main Progressive Christianity website explicitly denying that Jesus is God:

      “It’s okay for males to wrestle (God was imagined as male, remember) but not to cuddle (Jesus was imagined as God, remember).”

      https://progressivechristianity.org/resources/cuddling-with-jesus/

      Rod Bower must obviously believe this too since he doesn’t believe in a literal God (as noted on Rev. Ould’s website). Catt and his ilk obfuscate the matter and do not say exactly if or how they understand Jesus’ divinity. Anyway, it is interesting to see a member of their movement say this so unambiguously.

  16. Here’s another discussion of what Progressive Christianity actually means from one of its advocates:

    “Friends, Jesus isn’t God. Jesus didn’t die for our sins. Jesus wasn’t killed instead of us. God isn’t wrathful or vindictive. There isn’t a hell (other than ones that we create here on this earth). Going to heaven after we die isn’t what the faith or salvation is about. God didn’t write the Bible. There isn’t going to be a “rapture.” Jesus’ resurrection didn’t have to be understood as a physical one for it to be a real and meaningful one (Paul and many of the early disciples encountered a spiritually risen Christ). Science and faith aren’t incompatible. God didn’t create the Creation in 6 literal days. The earth isn’t only 6,000 old. Human aggravated global warming isn’t bogus. God isn’t male. Women are fully equal to men. Homosexuality isn’t a sin. Being transgender isn’t sinful or to be rejected. Racism is sinful. And Christianity isn’t the only way for humans to experience salvation.

    Instead, Jesus and his message are about living in love, loving-kindness, compassion, and grace. Jesus and his message are counter-cultural and subversive to all of the worldly powers that be. Following Jesus is about nonviolently resisting imperialism. Following Jesus is about pursuing God’s vision for restorative and distributive justice instead of human tendencies for retributive justice. Following Jesus is about trusting in the wisdom and blessedness of the ways that he taught that seem counter-intuitive according to the ways of the world. Following Jesus is about liberating humanity from the myth of redemptive violence and bringing us toward the reality of redemptive nonviolence. Following Jesus is about seeking to manifest the beloved community, the empire/kingdom of God, “on Earth as it is in heaven.” Following Jesus is to be familiar with the scriptures that informed and inspired Jesus to help inspire, embolden, and empower us as we follow this radical and challenging Way together in community with kindred spirits.

    Progressive Christians rightfully honor and celebrate Jesus as a unique and fully incarnate (poetically speaking) manifestation of God.”

    Source: https://www.patheos.com/blogs/rogerwolsey/2018/05/its-time-for-progressive-christianity/

    Heretical, woke nonsense.

  17. Yes, it is all New Age nonsense from Westar. This part explains the attitude of their priests and priestesses:

    “…leans toward panentheism rather than supernatural theism; emphasizes salvation here and now instead of primarily in heaven later; emphasizes being saved for robust, abundant/eternal life over being saved from hell; emphasizes the social/communal aspects of salvation instead of merely the personal; stresses social justice as integral to Christian discipleship; takes the Bible seriously but not necessarily literally, embracing a more interpretive, metaphorical understanding; emphasizes orthopraxy instead of orthodoxy (right actions over right beliefs); embraces reason as well as paradox and mystery — instead of blind allegiance to rigid doctrines and dogmas; does not consider homosexuality to be sinful…”

    This part explains why Peter Catt would not join a mainstream Christian pacifist group. Unfortunately, it also shows him to be even more hypocritical than I previously thought:

    “Following Jesus is about nonviolently resisting imperialism. Following Jesus is about pursuing God’s vision for restorative and distributive justice instead of human tendencies for retributive justice.”

    The author’s note at the end clarifies some things too. It explains why someone like Catt can say he still believes Jesus is part of the Trinity while not believing He is God Incarnate in the orthodox/traditional sense:

    “Caveat: I do believe that Jesus was divine (in the way that you and I are), and that he’s the 2nd person of the trinity. Christians rightfully honor and celebrate Jesus as a unique and fully incarnate manifestation of God. I don’t believe that he’s literally God (at least not what most people tend to mean by that word). We live and move and have our being in God, so did Jesus. The trinity is a beloved Christian poem of who God is to us. But poems don’t literally define things. Like all art, and theology, they point to what is beyond them.”

    Of course the early church did not believe anything remotely like this. It really is a religion for atheists who don’t like Biblical Christianity. It allows people like Rod Bower and Peter Catt to claim to be Christians when they really aren’t. It has nothing in common with the actual teachings of Jesus Christ, despite what its advocates claim. No wonder ACSQ is in such a mess due to this anti-Christian faith.

  18. I’ve been thinking about this. Progressive Christianity is probably most akin to the Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses: these groups all self-identify as Christian but they reject many of the classic tenets of Christianity twist and reinterpret the Bible’s teachings to conform to their own beliefs, and are not considered Christian by the mainstream churches.

  19. Normally unorthodox groups break away from an established denomination. What makes the Anglican Church Southern Queensland situation so unusual is that the unorthodox believers have come to dominate the dioceseband now through their recruitment and training practices they are reproducing themselves.

    Here is the dean”s latest sermon. He claims:

    * The water into wine story is a metaphor, not a record of an historical miracle

    * Traditional marriages (I assume he means arranged marriages) were about alliances between families to extend their power;

    * Women no longer have to obey in the marriage vows since they are increasingly equals.

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/13u9KsKBmriNyomYIJw7LIZ73eVBcGPFQ/view

    I am glad I am not part of that church.

  20. The last two paras seem like an attack on the traditional family “due to its “toxicity” and even contains an implicit endorsement of unmarried couples or at giving them equal status to married couples. It is very troubling to see a minister preach like this. No doubt this was informed by his feminism and promotion of homosexual culture.

    By contrast, my own pastor preached on the historicity of this miracle today and taught how marriage is about sacrificial love. His sermon, which would no doubt be considered “fundamentalist” by Cart because it argues that the miracle literally occurred contained far, far more spiritual depth and intellectual thoughtfulness than Catt’s progressive diatribe.

    I agree with the rest of you. The most disturbing thing is that these Anglican Church Southern Queensland ministers call themselves Progressive “Christians” while a multitude of their teachings and stances stand at direct variance to Christ’s teachings. They are a post-modern, New Age group that has branded themselves as Christian while promoting anti-christian stances.

    When these people eventually pass away, they are arrogant enough to think they are going to argue their way into heaven on technicalities – “I do believe in the resurrection, just not literally!” “I do believe Jesus is Lord – I just don’t believe He is literally God incarnate!” Well, it is between them and God but I wouldn’t like to be in their position on that day, especially since they are also leading their flocks astray with their ego trip-driven academic games and desire to refashion religion in their own image. They have made an idol of their own reason and seek the praise of the secular world with their PC liberal-left, secular teachings and downplaying of God’s Word and the rejection of the very doctrine He taught us through His mouthpieces like Paul.

    What a terrible tragedy for the city of Brisbane to have a wicked, wretched church like this. I will pray for them and for these heretical ministers so that some may even now repent and be saved. Thank goodness we still have faithful Anglican Dioceses like Sydney, Tasmania and Bathurst. God bless.

  21. My pastor also preached on the water into wine miracle this Sunday. He too affirmed that it literally happened. In addition, he pointed out the literary richness of the story -its parallels to the revelation of God to the Israelites on the third day in Exodus, the symbolism of the marriage between Christ and the Church, the similarities between Christ’s first and last words to Mary in John’s Gospel (His first revelation and God and His final crowning as king on the cross) and the fact that the wine we partake of in the Lord’s Supper is part of a neverending wedding feast. In short, our sermon was much richer and more of depth and thoughtful literary analysis of the text than Peter Catt’s radical approach. No doubt though he would dismiss us as fundamentalists because we are Bible-believing Protestants who also acknowledge the miracle really happened!

    It seems like the Progressive Christians put the Social Gospel and Love thy neighbour above all else. A noble goal but for the fact they then ignore all the minor laws and prophets that hang off the second great commandment and think they know best how to love our neighbour rather than listening to God’s guidance. Of course, their way of loving thy neighbour ends up being exactly the same as the secularlist left-wing socialist policies that have proved so disastrous in the past, like the political correctness gone mad of the Keating era and the current Greens. Therefore, they promote feminism, gay marriage, extreme forms of panentheistic environmentalism, and are unsure of where they stand on euthanasia or abortion. They claim to ignore doctrine and focus on moral behaviour but end up being deeply immoral hypocrites who fail to practice what they preach. As the person above said, they usurp the name Progressive Christians but they teach blatantly anti-Christian morals and beliefs.

    Peter Catt has turned the cathedral from an earthly glimpse of the New Jerusalem into a New Sodom and he has done so with Archbishop Philip Aspinall’s blessing.

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