“In the beginning, before time and space as we know them, before creation, before there was any reality distinct from God which could be the object of the love of God or the setting for His acts of freedom, God anticipated and determined within Himself … that the goal and meaning of all His dealings with the as yet non-existent universe should be the the fact that in His Son He would be gracious towards man, uniting Himself with him. In the beginning it was the choice of the Father Himself to establish this covenant with man by giving up His Son for him, that He Himself might become man in fulfillment of His grace. In the beginning it was the choice of the Son to be obedient to grace, and therefore to offer up Himself and to become man in order that this covenant might become a reality. In the beginning it was the resolve of the Holy Spirit that the unity of God, of Father and Son should not be disturbed or rent by this covenant with man, but that it should be made the more glorious, the deity of God, the divinity of His love and freedom, being conformed and demonstrated in this offering of the Father and this self-offering of the Son. This choice was in the beginning. As the subject and object of this choice, Jesus Christ was at the beginning.”—Karl Barth (via wesleyhill) (via christianity)
If you’ve heard the word porn in church recently, in a small group or from the pulpit, chances are you hardly blinked. Thanks to ministries like Promise Keepers and Operation Integrity, the research of sex addiction expert Patrick Carnes and neuroscientist William Struthers, and individuals courageous enough to admit they have a problem, American churches have squarely faced porn’s destructive and tragic effects. We know porn is highly addictive, and we have more tools than ever to break its stranglehold. Praise God.
Progressives in America are often keen on promoting the European welfare state as an argument for big government, not least in the healthcare debate. They point to European countries, often the social-democratic Nordic countries, as role models, with their universal healthcare, public school system, generous social-safety net, and all the happy people who live there.
In a SPIEGEL interview, Egyptian-German political scientist Hamed Abdel-Samad talks about his childhood as the son of an imam in Egypt, why he thinks Islam is a danger to society and his theories about the inevitable decline of the Muslim world.
Conservatives recognize that social order is hard to achieve and easy to destroy, that it is held in place by discipline and sacrifice, and that the indulgence of criminality and vice is not an act of kindness but an injustice for which all of us will pay. Conservatives therefore maintain severe and — to many people — unattractive attitudes. They favor retributive punishment in the criminal law; they uphold traditional marriage and the sacrifices that it requires; they believe in discipline in schools and the value of hard work and military service. They believe in the family and think that the father is an essential part in it. They see welfare provisions as necessary, but also as a potential threat to genuine charity, and a way both of rewarding antisocial conduct and creating a culture of dependency. They value the hard-won legal and constitutional inheritance of their country and believe that immigrants must also value it if they are to be allowed to settle here. Conservatives do not think that war is caused by military strength, but on the contrary by military weakness, of a kind that tempts adventurers and tyrants. And a properly ordered society must be prepared to fight wars — even wars in foreign parts — if it is to enjoy a lasting peace in its homeland. In short conservatives are a hard and unfriendly bunch who, in the world in which we live, must steel themselves to be reviled and despised by all people who make compassion into the cornerstone of the moral life.
Anne Rice isn't throwing away her faith. She still dedicates her life to the lord Jesus Christ. She just doesn't want to be categorized as a lot, not all, of judgmental, hateful people. In the Bible, it doesn't say that you have to follow a certain group of people to be accepted by God.
I just linked the article, I’m just the messenger. But yes, you need to be a part of the church to be a part of the body of Christ. And nope, I see these people you call hateful being the most hated by the world. Don’t forget that hate is not bad or intrinsically evil, it is good if you hate what God hate. There is no way you can love if you do not hate. To love something, you need to hate what its against it. That mean, if you love God, you hate sin, you hate the devil and so forth.