Author Topic: Contraception  (Read 9425 times)

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #90 on: October 28, 2010, 08:11:10 PM »
Well, not just Mongolia.  When you get in your car and drive across the States you realize how empty most of our country is - we cluster in the big cities and the burbs, but my goodness, there's lots and lots of empty land here.  I notice it driving out to MD (east), but it is even more striking when heading west (my brother lives in Montana). 

I lived in Wyoming -- lots of empty spaces. However, even with all this empty space, do all the people who are now filling the earth have clean water to drink? Do they have sufficient food to eat? Do they have what is necessary for shalom in their lives?

I remember reading about an experiment with guppies in a fish bowl. In one case, the experimenters started with two guppies -- a male and a female. Over time, they reached x number of guppies in the bowl. In another case, the experimenters started with the same size fish bowl, and filled it with many, many guppies. Over time, they reduced their numbers by killing off the weaker ones to x number of guppies -- about the same number as when they started with two.

If we are allowing people to starve to death, perhaps the earth has reached the capacity population that it can handle.

I am sure none of our bellies are flapping against our backbones...

It isn't about us, but about them whose bellies are flapping against their backbones. We think that as long as we have enough food to feed 19 children we can have them, as long as we have enough energy to heat and cool a 8,000 square foot house, we should have it, as long as we can afford the gas for the large, fuel-guzzling SUV, we should be able to drive it, etc.

Do you not think that God has put us here in wealthy America so that we have some power and wealth to help the powerless and poor around the world rather than use that wealth just for self?
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

kls

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #91 on: October 28, 2010, 08:49:08 PM »
Do you not think that God has put us here in wealthy America so that we have some power and wealth to help the powerless and poor around the world rather than use that wealth just for self?

I'm willing to bet the larger families in our churches are probably some of the better stewards among us.  Family size does not equate in any way with the ability to help others who are less fortunate.  In fact, I'll bet they're more motivated to help others at a greater rate than the rich, spoiled kids sitting around playing on their DSIs and texting on their cell phones.  I wish you would apply this same logic about using wealth for self to the abortion argument.

Karl Hess

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #92 on: October 28, 2010, 08:54:46 PM »
Without those good old days in which people had a lot of children and lived in poverty, would you even exist?
Maybe not, but then again Hitler Stalin might not have existed either. Hard to judge God's will.  Maybe I don't actually exist, come to think of it...my brain hurts!

BTW, I used the example of my mother's grandparents, but my father's grandparents in Anne Arundel Co. had an much more tragic story (only 2 of 10 children made it to adulthood, my grandmother being one of the two).
Kurt

God intended good to come from Hitler and Stalin too.  They too were given as gifts to their parents.

That sounds good, but can you really know that?

It gets into the hidden will, omniscience, and predestination of God, doesn't it?

Mike

No, it gets into the revealed will of God.  "Children are a blessing from the Lord."  "God desires all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth."  Going beyond what God says about human beings in verses like those is getting into the hidden will of God.

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #93 on: October 28, 2010, 10:12:22 PM »
No, it gets into the revealed will of God.  "Children are a blessing from the Lord."  "God desires all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth."  Going beyond what God says about human beings in verses like those is getting into the hidden will of God.

I checked two different translations. Neither Bible has "Children are a blessing from the Lord." Where does that come from?
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Matt

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #94 on: October 28, 2010, 10:21:12 PM »
Psalm 127:

Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD,
    the fruit of the womb a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
   are the children of one’s youth.
Blessed is the man
   who fills his quiver with them!
He shall not be put to shame
   when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.


Kurt Weinelt

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #95 on: October 28, 2010, 10:31:05 PM »
Well, not just Mongolia.  When you get in your car and drive across the States you realize how empty most of our country is - we cluster in the big cities and the burbs, but my goodness, there's lots and lots of empty land here.  I notice it driving out to MD (east), but it is even more striking when heading west (my brother lives in Montana).
Lots of open land, but as a westerner I would be remiss if I didn't point out that there is not enough water to sustain large populations in much of the West. That is why there is so much open country that we are truly blessed with.
"Learning about history is an antidote to the hubris of the present, the idea that everything in OUR lives is the ultimate." David McCullough

Matt

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #96 on: October 28, 2010, 10:38:13 PM »
Lots of open land, but as a westerner I would be remiss if I didn't point out that there is not enough water to sustain large populations in much of the West. That is why there is so much open country that we are truly blessed with.

You mean large populations like Los Angeles, Phoenix, Dallas, Las Vegas and San Jose? :)

I think it is more accurate to say that water is more expensive in the West, and certainly more political. Las Vegas has had explosive population growth in a very dry place and yet, somehow, water still comes out of every tap in town. I know water management issues are a big deal in the West but I don't think it has constrained growth in any meaningful way. Otherwise, how do you explain Las Vegas?

James Gustafson

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #97 on: October 28, 2010, 11:18:12 PM »
Well, not just Mongolia.  When you get in your car and drive across the States you realize how empty most of our country is - we cluster in the big cities and the burbs, but my goodness, there's lots and lots of empty land here.  I notice it driving out to MD (east), but it is even more striking when heading west (my brother lives in Montana).  

I lived in Wyoming -- lots of empty spaces. However, even with all this empty space, do all the people who are now filling the earth have clean water to drink? Do they have sufficient food to eat? Do they have what is necessary for shalom in their lives?
I remember reading about an experiment with guppies in a fish bowl. In one case, the experimenters started with two guppies -- a male and a female. Over time, they reached x number of guppies in the bowl. In another case, the experimenters started with the same size fish bowl, and filled it with many, many guppies. Over time, they reduced their numbers by killing off the weaker ones to x number of guppies -- about the same number as when they started with two.

If we are allowing people to starve to death, perhaps the earth has reached the capacity population that it can handle.

Lets assume for a moment that this line of reasoning was adopted by the governments of all humans and that at the first sight of famine they crack down on population control.  Abram would not have prayed for or accepted the promise of God that he should have children because there was famine in the land and it was severe (Genesis 12:10), so Abram should have told God that there wasn't enough food and good water for the whole world so he shouldn't have any children to inherit the land...  And again, God promised Isaac during times of famine that he would have MORE children and the famine is to be endured, but Pr. Stoffregen's method would have had Issac telling God that there wasn't enough food and good water for everyone so he shouldn't have children since the world must be full. And what about Joseph, he must have been such a fool, building up storehouses when what he really should have done was put in place a government enforced population control methodology.

No,  you see, none of that is right.  The human race has NEVER had a period of time that met the requirements set forth by Pr. Stoffregen, there was never a time since Adam and Eve left Eden that there was plenty for everyone, never a time that everyone was fed and no one starved and everyone had clean and plentiful water.  Its a false dichotomy to claim that since we don't have it now for the entire world the world must be full.  ::)   Since the Pharaohs or the Kingdom of Ur, from the Stone age, Bronze age, and Iron age, through the Axial age and the industrial revolution, from Chinese to the Incans, the fantasy requirements of everyone having enough food and water has never, ever, occurred.  WE, globally,  now have a higher percentage of the people with good food and reliable sources of water than any other time in the history of civilization and humanity itself.  Now is the best time in the history of the world to have children.  The likelihood of being able to clothe and feed them and they can live long and healthy lives is higher now than any other time in history.  What irony it is to now claim that since we can't guarantee food and water for every soul born we should produce less born.  Funny stuff, self focused absurdities, are.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2010, 11:23:38 PM by James Gustafson »

Karl Hess

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #98 on: October 28, 2010, 11:37:24 PM »
No, it gets into the revealed will of God.  "Children are a blessing from the Lord."  "God desires all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth."  Going beyond what God says about human beings in verses like those is getting into the hidden will of God.

I checked two different translations. Neither Bible has "Children are a blessing from the Lord." Where does that come from?

It was a paraphrase from memory, but I think an accurate paraphrase of some verses you no doubt know:

Ps. 128:3-4

Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olive shoots around your table.
Lo, thus shall the man be blessed who fears the Lord.

And also what mr. Jamison said.

Matt

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #99 on: October 29, 2010, 12:37:25 AM »
Well, yeah. You can run "Jesus is the Messiah" through your Bible search engine and get no hits. This doesn't mean that it is not a clear teaching of scripture.

This kind of makes me wonder if Brian Stoffregen has ever really read a Bible.

Karl Hess

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #100 on: October 29, 2010, 12:52:11 AM »
Oh he has. 

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #101 on: October 29, 2010, 02:19:33 AM »
Well, yeah. You can run "Jesus is the Messiah" through your Bible search engine and get no hits. This doesn't mean that it is not a clear teaching of scripture.

But I wouldn't pretend that I was quoting scriptures if I write, "Jesus is the Messiah." At the same time, I can point to the scripture that calls Cyrus the Persion "his [the LORD's] messiah," although many translations just call him "his anointed."

There is no clear biblical understanding of what it means to be a messiah (an anointed one) which was used of priests, kings, and prophets.

Quote
This kind of makes me wonder if Brian Stoffregen has ever really read a Bible.

I read it often, usually more than once a day, and often in the Greek for the New Testament. I do challenge people who quote what they think is in the Bible when it's not there. For instance, the Bible never says, "God helps them who help themselves."
« Last Edit: October 29, 2010, 02:26:01 AM by Brian Stoffregen »
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Charles_Austin

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #102 on: October 29, 2010, 03:22:20 AM »
Too many people who do read the Bible think they already know what it says before they read it.

olarmy02

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #103 on: October 29, 2010, 07:10:09 AM »
Well, not just Mongolia.  When you get in your car and drive across the States you realize how empty most of our country is - we cluster in the big cities and the burbs, but my goodness, there's lots and lots of empty land here.  I notice it driving out to MD (east), but it is even more striking when heading west (my brother lives in Montana). 

I lived in Wyoming -- lots of empty spaces. However, even with all this empty space, do all the people who are now filling the earth have clean water to drink? Do they have sufficient food to eat? Do they have what is necessary for shalom in their lives?

I remember reading about an experiment with guppies in a fish bowl. In one case, the experimenters started with two guppies -- a male and a female. Over time, they reached x number of guppies in the bowl. In another case, the experimenters started with the same size fish bowl, and filled it with many, many guppies. Over time, they reduced their numbers by killing off the weaker ones to x number of guppies -- about the same number as when they started with two.

If we are allowing people to starve to death, perhaps the earth has reached the capacity population that it can handle.

I am sure none of our bellies are flapping against our backbones...

It isn't about us, but about them whose bellies are flapping against their backbones. We think that as long as we have enough food to feed 19 children we can have them, as long as we have enough energy to heat and cool a 8,000 square foot house, we should have it, as long as we can afford the gas for the large, fuel-guzzling SUV, we should be able to drive it, etc.

Do you not think that God has put us here in wealthy America so that we have some power and wealth to help the powerless and poor around the world rather than use that wealth just for self?

To answer your question, yes.  However, it is about us Pastor Stoffregen, there is a reason the good Ol' USA is the fattest country on earth.  There is a reason we consume more gasoline, drive more cars, etc....  We as a nation over-consume.  If we over-consume and others under-consume (starve) what does this mean?  We are over populated?  Or maybe we need to consume less and as you say "help the powerless and poor".  I'd rather feed them, preferably like Norman Borlaug, than pass out condoms and the pill.  "Oh you are starving, then you have too many children here are some condoms and the pill."  "But I am still starving."  "No worries this will all correct itself in a generation or two."  It almost sounds like a Monty Python skit.

Rev. S.P. McMaughan
"there is no distinction between true and false interpretation of scripture without the formation of confession"  Sasse

Kurt Weinelt

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Re: Contraception
« Reply #104 on: October 29, 2010, 08:31:03 AM »
You mean large populations like Los Angeles, Phoenix, Dallas, Las Vegas and San Jose? :)
I think it is more accurate to say that water is more expensive in the West, and certainly more political. Las Vegas has had explosive population growth in a very dry place and yet, somehow, water still comes out of every tap in town. I know water management issues are a big deal in the West but I don't think it has constrained growth in any meaningful way. Otherwise, how do you explain Las Vegas?
To sustain high populations in the west, scarce water must be diverted from other uses. Las Vegas? Hoover Dam, of course. The Colorado is so dammed that Mexico gets only a trickle from that once mighty river. The tradeoff is that the Grand Canyon ecosystem is forever changed. Very little of the Rio Grande water that flows from Colorado into New Mexico makes it into Texas because of irrigation in New Mexico. During drought years, the Rio Grande sometimes disappears before it gets to the Gulf.  If we have a major drought like the 13th century (as I recollect) that drove the Anasazi (Ancestral Puebloans) out of their homes, and you'll see major upheaval out west.  Water is more expensive because it is scarce; like any other resource, shortages trigger higher prices and surpluses trigger lower prices.
Now I'm off to school to teach my Economics classes. ;) Though it seems like a digression, population distribution does play into this debate in general.
Kurt
"Learning about history is an antidote to the hubris of the present, the idea that everything in OUR lives is the ultimate." David McCullough