Author Topic: Political/cultural/religious division  (Read 20854 times)

peter_speckhard

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #180 on: January 11, 2022, 03:56:03 PM »
https://issuesinsights.com/2022/01/11/americas-u-haul-revolution/

This article takes the cultural divide as a given and predicts how population shifts will affect the culture. They essentially say that those with the wherewithal are moving from blue states to red states, which will deepen the cultural divide and give a bit more congressional representation to red states in the future.

Other articles examine voter registration patterns to determine whether those leaving blue states will bring their politics with them and turn the red states purple. The answer so far appears to be emphatically no. The reverse is happening. Those relocating to red states are doing so because they like the redness of the destination and are registering to vote accordingly. That means that most of them were probably conservative voters who were frustrated political minorities in blue states, which means the blue states will be better bluer just as rapidly as the red states get redder. The only difference will be that the red states will be growing and the blue states shrinking.

The nattering nabobs of negativism continue to be the hopeless, hysterical hypochondriacs of history, one muses, leading them to live shrunken, aging and blue on the left lower and right upper coasts.  I punched the link to this article by I and I and not by the way was immediately shown an ad by Google on that site to rid the elected US world of the Muslim, Ilhan Omar.  So along with the right column showing who else I and I likes to read, I got the impression that this might be a slightly conservative site.  True?  Or just middle of the road common sensical?

Dave Benke
I’m assuming Issues and Insights is a conservative publication, but I don’t know much about it. What difference does it make? Do you doubt the migration patterns? The population trends? It seems like a preemptive ad hominem argument.

Rep. Omar is a radical and an embarrassment to Congress (if such a thing be possible) so I would interpret that as as no different than the regular warnings about fascist threats to our democracy one encounters on progressive websites.

Pilgrim

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #181 on: January 11, 2022, 04:21:03 PM »
Charles,

I know that this is a couple of pages back, but you wrote: "an essential good in humanity," As a Lutheran Pastor, do you truly believe that? It would explain you for years...and would explain your view of the world. If Genesis 3 is truly descriptive of the human condition, such a view is naive at best, and heretical at worst. People are NOT essentially "good". They are captive to being their own god, more often than not without their knowledge or consent, granted, but nevertheless... Do you dare admit that this also applies to us all, whether Democrat or Republican, Liberal or Conservative, you and me, etc.? Grace alone, dear Charles, is the only antecdote of your apparent failure to understand the heart of human nature and the general tone of your posts over all these years.

Tim
Pr. Tim Christ, STS

Dave Benke

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #182 on: January 11, 2022, 04:47:13 PM »
https://issuesinsights.com/2022/01/11/americas-u-haul-revolution/

This article takes the cultural divide as a given and predicts how population shifts will affect the culture. They essentially say that those with the wherewithal are moving from blue states to red states, which will deepen the cultural divide and give a bit more congressional representation to red states in the future.

Other articles examine voter registration patterns to determine whether those leaving blue states will bring their politics with them and turn the red states purple. The answer so far appears to be emphatically no. The reverse is happening. Those relocating to red states are doing so because they like the redness of the destination and are registering to vote accordingly. That means that most of them were probably conservative voters who were frustrated political minorities in blue states, which means the blue states will be better bluer just as rapidly as the red states get redder. The only difference will be that the red states will be growing and the blue states shrinking.

The nattering nabobs of negativism continue to be the hopeless, hysterical hypochondriacs of history, one muses, leading them to live shrunken, aging and blue on the left lower and right upper coasts.  I punched the link to this article by I and I and not by the way was immediately shown an ad by Google on that site to rid the elected US world of the Muslim, Ilhan Omar.  So along with the right column showing who else I and I likes to read, I got the impression that this might be a slightly conservative site.  True?  Or just middle of the road common sensical?

Dave Benke
I’m assuming Issues and Insights is a conservative publication, but I don’t know much about it. What difference does it make? Do you doubt the migration patterns? The population trends? It seems like a preemptive ad hominem argument.

Rep. Omar is a radical and an embarrassment to Congress (if such a thing be possible) so I would interpret that as as no different than the regular warnings about fascist threats to our democracy one encounters on progressive websites.

Here's the rating of Issues and Insights from Media Bias Fact Check, an online source:  RIGHT BIAS
These media sources are moderately to strongly biased toward conservative causes through story selection and/or political affiliation. They may utilize strong loaded words (wording that attempts to influence an audience by using appeal to emotion or stereotypes), publish misleading reports and omit reporting of information that may damage conservative causes. Some sources in this category may be untrustworthy. See all Right Bias sources.
Overall, we rate Issues & Insights Right Biased based on story selection and editorial positions that favor a libertarian/conservative perspective. We also rate them Mixed for factual reporting due to the occasional reliance on poor sources as well as two failed fact checks.

I think this is an important ingredient in dialoguing about political/cultural/religious divides -- are the sources themselves biased?  Certainly the virus has caused lots of people to move from three states in particular in raw numbers - California, New York, and Illinois.   That's well known.  The best theory for the migration by far is economic.  It costs way, way more to live in those big Cali cities and in NYC for sure.  The people I know who have left just can't afford the overall cost in NYC.  $2300 per month for a 300 square foot apartment.  Are you kidding?

The rating demonstrates that the source is in line with those who are on the libertarian small government side of the aisle.  That doesn't make the facts right or wrong, but it can definitely influence the interpretation of the facts.

Dave Benke



Charles Austin

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #183 on: January 11, 2022, 05:02:23 PM »
Peter writes:
Rep. Omar is a radical and an embarrassment to Congress (if such a thing be possible) so I would interpret that as as no different than the regular warnings about fascist threats to our democracy one encounters on progressive websites.
I comment:
And what do you make of Marjorie Taylor Greene, or the member of Congress that said we had to take a “balanced” view of Nazism and fascism? Or the Members who said Jan. 6 was “normal tourism”? Good grief, if you want to talk about embarrassments to Congress Party by Party, your guys win by a mile.

Pastor Christ writes:
I know that this is a couple of pages back, but you wrote: "an essential good in humanity," As a Lutheran Pastor, do you truly believe that? It would explain you for years...and would explain your view of the world. If Genesis 3 is truly descriptive of the human condition, such a view is naive at best, and heretical at worst. People are NOT essentially "good". They are captive to being their own god, more often than not without their knowledge or consent, granted, but nevertheless... Do you dare admit that this also applies to us all, whether Democrat or Republican, Liberal or Conservative, you and me, etc.? Grace alone, dear Charles, is the only antecdote of your apparent failure to understand the heart of human nature and the general tone of your posts over all these years.
I comment:
Yes, I believe there is an essential goodness within humanity. I also believe that it is tainted by sin, whether original or under whatever other category we want to put on it. And some are more tainted than others, and some are less tainted than others. We can look at humanity as totally depraved and corrupt, or we can look for the goodness which God created within us. There is a type of spirituality that focuses on how awful we are. I would like to see more focus on how good we could be.
Christians come to whatever “goodness” they can muster through the grace of God, repentance, conversion, Jesus, whatever. Others might find other paths to their “goodness” and we should rejoice in that as well.
Retired ELCA Pastor. Former national staff Lutheran Church in America And the Lutheran world Federation, Geneva. Former journalist. Now retired and living in Minneapolis.

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #184 on: January 11, 2022, 06:33:14 PM »
Charles,

Thank you for your candid reply. I do understand your inclination but with well over 35+ years of ministry under my belt (not as many as you granted), I would suggest that Luther's Bondage of the Will would be worth re-reading, as well as more modern insights of Family systems and what I refer to as "theological psychology" as over against the "we're basically good people" myth that is constantly promulgated. Again, it is the sola's that transform lives and even then, who truly knows? Thus, at the last is the cry not "Lord, have mercy!"

Tim Christ
Pr. Tim Christ, STS

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #185 on: January 11, 2022, 07:02:03 PM »
Charles,

Thank you for your candid reply. I do understand your inclination but with well over 35+ years of ministry under my belt (not as many as you granted), I would suggest that Luther's Bondage of the Will would be worth re-reading, as well as more modern insights of Family systems and what I refer to as "theological psychology" as over against the "we're basically good people" myth that is constantly promulgated. Again, it is the sola's that transform lives and even then, who truly knows? Thus, at the last is the cry not "Lord, have mercy!"

Tim Christ


Some quotes from the Apology (Kolb & Wengert's edition) about our ability to do good, i.e., "civil righteousness". Boldface added.

Now the scholastics mingled Christian teaching with philosophical views about the perfection of nature and attributed more than was proper to the freedom of the will and to “elicited acts” by teaching that human beings are justified before God by philosophical or civil righteousness (which we also admit are subject to human reason and are somehow within our ability). (p. 114, 12)

If the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, the flesh certainly does not love God. If it cannot submit to the law of God, it cannot love God. If the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, the flesh sins even when we perform outward civil works. If it cannot submit to the law of God, it certainly sins even when we perform works that are excellent and praiseworthy in human eyes. The opponents consider only the commandments of the second table, which entail the civil righteousness that reason understands. (p. 125, 34)

For although we are able to do external works that are not commanded by the law of God, nevertheless it is vain and ungodly to trust that these works satisfy God’s law. (p. 211, 143)

Therefore, it is helpful to distinguish between civil righteousness, which is ascribed to the free will, and spiritual righteousness, which is ascribed to the operation of the Holy Spirit in the regenerate. In this way outward discipline is preserved, because all people alike ought to know that God requires civil righteousness and that to some extent we are able to achieve it. (p. 234, 9)

Thus, even our Confessions indicate that we have some ability to good as required by civil righteousness and is seen as good by other people. However, this goodness is never good enough to satisfy God's demands.
"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]

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #186 on: January 11, 2022, 07:14:15 PM »
Charles,

Thank you for your candid reply. I do understand your inclination but with well over 35+ years of ministry under my belt (not as many as you granted), I would suggest that Luther's Bondage of the Will would be worth re-reading, as well as more modern insights of Family systems and what I refer to as "theological psychology" as over against the "we're basically good people" myth that is constantly promulgated. Again, it is the sola's that transform lives and even then, who truly knows? Thus, at the last is the cry not "Lord, have mercy!"

Tim Christ


Some quotes from the Apology (Kolb & Wengert's edition) about our ability to do good, i.e., "civil righteousness". Boldface added.

Now the scholastics mingled Christian teaching with philosophical views about the perfection of nature and attributed more than was proper to the freedom of the will and to “elicited acts” by teaching that human beings are justified before God by philosophical or civil righteousness (which we also admit are subject to human reason and are somehow within our ability). (p. 114, 12)

If the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, the flesh certainly does not love God. If it cannot submit to the law of God, it cannot love God. If the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, the flesh sins even when we perform outward civil works. If it cannot submit to the law of God, it certainly sins even when we perform works that are excellent and praiseworthy in human eyes. The opponents consider only the commandments of the second table, which entail the civil righteousness that reason understands. (p. 125, 34)

For although we are able to do external works that are not commanded by the law of God, nevertheless it is vain and ungodly to trust that these works satisfy God’s law. (p. 211, 143)

Therefore, it is helpful to distinguish between civil righteousness, which is ascribed to the free will, and spiritual righteousness, which is ascribed to the operation of the Holy Spirit in the regenerate. In this way outward discipline is preserved, because all people alike ought to know that God requires civil righteousness and that to some extent we are able to achieve it. (p. 234, 9)

Thus, even our Confessions indicate that we have some ability to good as required by civil righteousness and is seen as good by other people. However, this goodness is never good enough to satisfy God's demands.

I don't know if you realize it or not, but while the Confessions state that humans have a certain "Civil Righteousness" they also state that there is NO "essential goodness within humanity." They  also state that humanity is not merely "tainted by sin," but is, in fact, dead in sin.

Please do not try to confuse the issue.
The significance of the passage of time, right? The significance of the passage of time. So when you think about it, there is great significance to the passage of time. -- VP Kamala Harris

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #187 on: January 11, 2022, 07:47:33 PM »
Charles,

Thank you for your candid reply. I do understand your inclination but with well over 35+ years of ministry under my belt (not as many as you granted), I would suggest that Luther's Bondage of the Will would be worth re-reading, as well as more modern insights of Family systems and what I refer to as "theological psychology" as over against the "we're basically good people" myth that is constantly promulgated. Again, it is the sola's that transform lives and even then, who truly knows? Thus, at the last is the cry not "Lord, have mercy!"

Tim Christ


Some quotes from the Apology (Kolb & Wengert's edition) about our ability to do good, i.e., "civil righteousness". Boldface added.

Now the scholastics mingled Christian teaching with philosophical views about the perfection of nature and attributed more than was proper to the freedom of the will and to “elicited acts” by teaching that human beings are justified before God by philosophical or civil righteousness (which we also admit are subject to human reason and are somehow within our ability). (p. 114, 12)

If the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, the flesh certainly does not love God. If it cannot submit to the law of God, it cannot love God. If the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, the flesh sins even when we perform outward civil works. If it cannot submit to the law of God, it certainly sins even when we perform works that are excellent and praiseworthy in human eyes. The opponents consider only the commandments of the second table, which entail the civil righteousness that reason understands. (p. 125, 34)

For although we are able to do external works that are not commanded by the law of God, nevertheless it is vain and ungodly to trust that these works satisfy God’s law. (p. 211, 143)

Therefore, it is helpful to distinguish between civil righteousness, which is ascribed to the free will, and spiritual righteousness, which is ascribed to the operation of the Holy Spirit in the regenerate. In this way outward discipline is preserved, because all people alike ought to know that God requires civil righteousness and that to some extent we are able to achieve it. (p. 234, 9)

Thus, even our Confessions indicate that we have some ability to good as required by civil righteousness and is seen as good by other people. However, this goodness is never good enough to satisfy God's demands.

I don't know if you realize it or not, but while the Confessions state that humans have a certain "Civil Righteousness" they also state that there is NO "essential goodness within humanity." They  also state that humanity is not merely "tainted by sin," but is, in fact, dead in sin.

Please do not try to confuse the issue.

Methinks that you have confused the issue by taking Charles comment and turning it into a theological issue when he meant it as a civil righteousness issue.

At least I gave you quotes from the Confessions. A quick search for "essential goodness within humanity" didn't give me any hits in the Book of Concord. Can you give a reference for your quotes?
"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]

Rob Morris

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #188 on: January 11, 2022, 10:14:37 PM »
I don’t know if it’s the passage Pr. Butler has in mind, but FC I is pretty clear: “We believe, teach, and confess that original sin is not a slight, but so deep a corruption of human nature that nothing healthy or uncorrupt has remained in man’s body or soul, in his inner or outward powers… (Ep. 3)

Human nature itself is not sin, but there remains no beachhead within us that sin has not twisted or stained. Appeals to the better angels of our nature will inevitably end in disappointment. Thus, my own political philosophy prefers those approaches that put guards against human  sinfulness, rather than those that assume human goodness. It’s why I believe that communism will always fail, while democracy at least has a puncher’s chance. A republic democracy is even better… if you can keep it.

peter_speckhard

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #189 on: January 11, 2022, 10:19:12 PM »
https://issuesinsights.com/2022/01/11/americas-u-haul-revolution/

This article takes the cultural divide as a given and predicts how population shifts will affect the culture. They essentially say that those with the wherewithal are moving from blue states to red states, which will deepen the cultural divide and give a bit more congressional representation to red states in the future.

Other articles examine voter registration patterns to determine whether those leaving blue states will bring their politics with them and turn the red states purple. The answer so far appears to be emphatically no. The reverse is happening. Those relocating to red states are doing so because they like the redness of the destination and are registering to vote accordingly. That means that most of them were probably conservative voters who were frustrated political minorities in blue states, which means the blue states will be better bluer just as rapidly as the red states get redder. The only difference will be that the red states will be growing and the blue states shrinking.

The nattering nabobs of negativism continue to be the hopeless, hysterical hypochondriacs of history, one muses, leading them to live shrunken, aging and blue on the left lower and right upper coasts.  I punched the link to this article by I and I and not by the way was immediately shown an ad by Google on that site to rid the elected US world of the Muslim, Ilhan Omar.  So along with the right column showing who else I and I likes to read, I got the impression that this might be a slightly conservative site.  True?  Or just middle of the road common sensical?

Dave Benke
I’m assuming Issues and Insights is a conservative publication, but I don’t know much about it. What difference does it make? Do you doubt the migration patterns? The population trends? It seems like a preemptive ad hominem argument.

Rep. Omar is a radical and an embarrassment to Congress (if such a thing be possible) so I would interpret that as as no different than the regular warnings about fascist threats to our democracy one encounters on progressive websites.

Here's the rating of Issues and Insights from Media Bias Fact Check, an online source:  RIGHT BIAS
These media sources are moderately to strongly biased toward conservative causes through story selection and/or political affiliation. They may utilize strong loaded words (wording that attempts to influence an audience by using appeal to emotion or stereotypes), publish misleading reports and omit reporting of information that may damage conservative causes. Some sources in this category may be untrustworthy. See all Right Bias sources.
Overall, we rate Issues & Insights Right Biased based on story selection and editorial positions that favor a libertarian/conservative perspective. We also rate them Mixed for factual reporting due to the occasional reliance on poor sources as well as two failed fact checks.

I think this is an important ingredient in dialoguing about political/cultural/religious divides -- are the sources themselves biased?  Certainly the virus has caused lots of people to move from three states in particular in raw numbers - California, New York, and Illinois.   That's well known.  The best theory for the migration by far is economic.  It costs way, way more to live in those big Cali cities and in NYC for sure.  The people I know who have left just can't afford the overall cost in NYC.  $2300 per month for a 300 square foot apartment.  Are you kidding?

The rating demonstrates that the source is in line with those who are on the libertarian small government side of the aisle.  That doesn't make the facts right or wrong, but it can definitely influence the interpretation of the facts.

Dave Benke
Media Bias is an interesting site.

https://adfontesmedia.com/download-the-media-bias-chart/

Notice that the NYT is much further to the left than FoxNews is to the Right. And all the mainstream sources cluster to the left of middle. And I'm glad you pointed out that story selection itself is one of the markers of bias.

Imagine for a moment that the Waukesha rampage through the parade had been done by a fundamentalist Christian in a MAGA hat. That would be still be the number one story on CNN. There would be a public health crisis of fundamentalism requiring congressional hearings. But since the actual story went against the grain of favored narrative- minority perpetrator, left winger, no guns involved, Soros-backed DA policies clearly at fault-- the story just kind of disappears.

peter_speckhard

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #190 on: January 11, 2022, 10:28:39 PM »
Interestingly, if you use their website search, the NYT comes out as CENTER-LEFT BIAS with  "slight to moderate liberal bias." Fox News comes out as RIGHT BIAS "moderate to strong conservative bias" even though on Media- Bias's own charts Fox is closer to the middle than the NYT. The reality is that the NYT is where progressives find out what they think. By story selection, headline wording, preferred "experts," etc. the NYT speaks exclusively to the Left and acknowledges the Right as a topic of discussion, not something they expect their readers to be a part of.

Probably there are multiple groups going by some variation on Media Bias, each with their own unacknowledged bias by which they evaluate everyone else as though they are objectively the middle.   

Jim Butler

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #191 on: January 11, 2022, 10:43:32 PM »
Charles,

Thank you for your candid reply. I do understand your inclination but with well over 35+ years of ministry under my belt (not as many as you granted), I would suggest that Luther's Bondage of the Will would be worth re-reading, as well as more modern insights of Family systems and what I refer to as "theological psychology" as over against the "we're basically good people" myth that is constantly promulgated. Again, it is the sola's that transform lives and even then, who truly knows? Thus, at the last is the cry not "Lord, have mercy!"

Tim Christ


Some quotes from the Apology (Kolb & Wengert's edition) about our ability to do good, i.e., "civil righteousness". Boldface added.

Now the scholastics mingled Christian teaching with philosophical views about the perfection of nature and attributed more than was proper to the freedom of the will and to “elicited acts” by teaching that human beings are justified before God by philosophical or civil righteousness (which we also admit are subject to human reason and are somehow within our ability). (p. 114, 12)

If the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, the flesh certainly does not love God. If it cannot submit to the law of God, it cannot love God. If the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, the flesh sins even when we perform outward civil works. If it cannot submit to the law of God, it certainly sins even when we perform works that are excellent and praiseworthy in human eyes. The opponents consider only the commandments of the second table, which entail the civil righteousness that reason understands. (p. 125, 34)

For although we are able to do external works that are not commanded by the law of God, nevertheless it is vain and ungodly to trust that these works satisfy God’s law. (p. 211, 143)

Therefore, it is helpful to distinguish between civil righteousness, which is ascribed to the free will, and spiritual righteousness, which is ascribed to the operation of the Holy Spirit in the regenerate. In this way outward discipline is preserved, because all people alike ought to know that God requires civil righteousness and that to some extent we are able to achieve it. (p. 234, 9)

Thus, even our Confessions indicate that we have some ability to good as required by civil righteousness and is seen as good by other people. However, this goodness is never good enough to satisfy God's demands.

I don't know if you realize it or not, but while the Confessions state that humans have a certain "Civil Righteousness" they also state that there is NO "essential goodness within humanity." They  also state that humanity is not merely "tainted by sin," but is, in fact, dead in sin.

Please do not try to confuse the issue.

Methinks that you have confused the issue by taking Charles comment and turning it into a theological issue when he meant it as a civil righteousness issue.

At least I gave you quotes from the Confessions. A quick search for "essential goodness within humanity" didn't give me any hits in the Book of Concord. Can you give a reference for your quotes?

Charles is quite clear: he believes there is an "essential goodness within humanity...that it is tainted by sin." Moreover, one should not look at humanity as "depraved" but we should "look for the goodness which God created within us" and how good we can be.

Pr. Christ notes that this contradicts Luther's Bondage of the Will. It also contradicts Article I of the Formula. In the Epitome, the Confessors state, "we believe, teach, and confess that original sin is not a minor corruption. It is so deep a corruption of human nature that nothing healthy or uncorrupt remains in man’s body or soul, in his inward or outward powers. (paragraph 8).

Under the negative theses, the Formula states, "It is so deep a corruption of human nature that nothing healthy or uncorrupt remains in man’s body or soul, in his inward or outward powers." (para. 13)

The Formula specifically rejects the idea that we are merely "tainted" with original sin: "We reject the teaching that original sin is only a slight, insignificant spot on the outside, smeared on human nature, or a blemish that has been blown upon it, beneath which the nature has kept its good powers even in spiritual things." (para. 14)

Finally, the Formula states that, "Original sin...is inherent to the nature, substance, and essence of humanity. So even if no wicked thought should ever arise in the heart of a corrupt person, no idle word should be spoken, no wicked deed should be done, human nature is still corrupted through original sin. Original sin is born in us because of the sinful seed and is a source of all other actual sins, such as wicked thoughts, words, and works." (para 21)

(All quotations from the McCain Kindle Edition. Still waiting for Fortress to put KW on Kindle.)
The significance of the passage of time, right? The significance of the passage of time. So when you think about it, there is great significance to the passage of time. -- VP Kamala Harris

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #192 on: January 12, 2022, 01:26:04 AM »
Charles,

Thank you for your candid reply. I do understand your inclination but with well over 35+ years of ministry under my belt (not as many as you granted), I would suggest that Luther's Bondage of the Will would be worth re-reading, as well as more modern insights of Family systems and what I refer to as "theological psychology" as over against the "we're basically good people" myth that is constantly promulgated. Again, it is the sola's that transform lives and even then, who truly knows? Thus, at the last is the cry not "Lord, have mercy!"

Tim Christ


Some quotes from the Apology (Kolb & Wengert's edition) about our ability to do good, i.e., "civil righteousness". Boldface added.

Now the scholastics mingled Christian teaching with philosophical views about the perfection of nature and attributed more than was proper to the freedom of the will and to “elicited acts” by teaching that human beings are justified before God by philosophical or civil righteousness (which we also admit are subject to human reason and are somehow within our ability). (p. 114, 12)

If the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, the flesh certainly does not love God. If it cannot submit to the law of God, it cannot love God. If the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, the flesh sins even when we perform outward civil works. If it cannot submit to the law of God, it certainly sins even when we perform works that are excellent and praiseworthy in human eyes. The opponents consider only the commandments of the second table, which entail the civil righteousness that reason understands. (p. 125, 34)

For although we are able to do external works that are not commanded by the law of God, nevertheless it is vain and ungodly to trust that these works satisfy God’s law. (p. 211, 143)

Therefore, it is helpful to distinguish between civil righteousness, which is ascribed to the free will, and spiritual righteousness, which is ascribed to the operation of the Holy Spirit in the regenerate. In this way outward discipline is preserved, because all people alike ought to know that God requires civil righteousness and that to some extent we are able to achieve it. (p. 234, 9)

Thus, even our Confessions indicate that we have some ability to good as required by civil righteousness and is seen as good by other people. However, this goodness is never good enough to satisfy God's demands.

I don't know if you realize it or not, but while the Confessions state that humans have a certain "Civil Righteousness" they also state that there is NO "essential goodness within humanity." They  also state that humanity is not merely "tainted by sin," but is, in fact, dead in sin.

Please do not try to confuse the issue.

Methinks that you have confused the issue by taking Charles comment and turning it into a theological issue when he meant it as a civil righteousness issue.

At least I gave you quotes from the Confessions. A quick search for "essential goodness within humanity" didn't give me any hits in the Book of Concord. Can you give a reference for your quotes?

Charles is quite clear: he believes there is an "essential goodness within humanity...that it is tainted by sin." Moreover, one should not look at humanity as "depraved" but we should "look for the goodness which God created within us" and how good we can be.

Pr. Christ notes that this contradicts Luther's Bondage of the Will. It also contradicts Article I of the Formula. In the Epitome, the Confessors state, "we believe, teach, and confess that original sin is not a minor corruption. It is so deep a corruption of human nature that nothing healthy or uncorrupt remains in man’s body or soul, in his inward or outward powers. (paragraph 8) .

Under the negative theses, the Formula states, "It is so deep a corruption of human nature that nothing healthy or uncorrupt remains in man’s body or soul, in his inward or outward powers." (para. 13)

The Formula specifically rejects the idea that we are merely "tainted" with original sin: "We reject the teaching that original sin is only a slight, insignificant spot on the outside, smeared on human nature, or a blemish that has been blown upon it, beneath which the nature has kept its good powers even in spiritual things." (para. 14)

Finally, the Formula states that, "Original sin...is inherent to the nature, substance, and essence of humanity. So even if no wicked thought should ever arise in the heart of a corrupt person, no idle word should be spoken, no wicked deed should be done, human nature is still corrupted through original sin. Original sin is born in us because of the sinful seed and is a source of all other actual sins, such as wicked thoughts, words, and works." (para 21)

(All quotations from the McCain Kindle Edition. Still waiting for Fortress to put KW on Kindle.)


I agree. Our sinful inner nature will corrupt everything that we do; but that doesn't mean that sinful beings cannot do loving deeds for their neighbors that are deemed good by the neighbor. That is the civil righteousness that we are able to attain. It has nothing to do with salvation; but it does have something to do with loving our neighbors - and fulfilling the positive meanings Luther gave for the Ten Commandments. For example: We can speak well of our neighbors. We can live chaste lives. Doing so doesn't remove the sin that lies within that is likely to corrupt our good intentions for doing good for neighbors.
"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]

Dave Benke

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #193 on: January 12, 2022, 08:50:54 AM »
Interestingly, if you use their website search, the NYT comes out as CENTER-LEFT BIAS with  "slight to moderate liberal bias." Fox News comes out as RIGHT BIAS "moderate to strong conservative bias" even though on Media- Bias's own charts Fox is closer to the middle than the NYT. The reality is that the NYT is where progressives find out what they think. By story selection, headline wording, preferred "experts," etc. the NYT speaks exclusively to the Left and acknowledges the Right as a topic of discussion, not something they expect their readers to be a part of.

Probably there are multiple groups going by some variation on Media Bias, each with their own unacknowledged bias by which they evaluate everyone else as though they are objectively the middle.

Or in the words of the ancients, "quis custodiet ipsos custodes."  Who's the custodian's custodian?  Through the years, when stuff is missing from churches, I've found a good place to start to be looking at the person who has all the keys and is on site after hours by her/himself.  Same for guards, or evaluators.  Who evaluates the Internal Affairs Division of the police?  An independent watchdog group.  Appointed by whom?  For how long?  With connections to whom?  For what reason?  It's an endless circuit, determined in advance by who's "us" and who's "them" in the mind of the one checking in. 

Dave Benke

peter_speckhard

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Re: Political/cultural/religious division
« Reply #194 on: January 12, 2022, 10:09:52 AM »
Here is another interesting article on the cultural divide.

https://bariweiss.substack.com/p/hollywoods-new-rules