Tuesday, February 13, 2007

What makes our truth better than theirs?

What makes our truth better than theirs?

I do not approach Pentecostalism with equity. To treat someone with equity requires certain pre-conditions. Scientists generally will not take seriously people talking about things about which they are not trained. Pentecostals are generally deficient in objective rationality. In a rational society, we approach people with more or less equity, but what are the exceptions? The insane, the criminals, children who are not yet rationally developed, and so forth and so on.

I think it is a serious mistake to approach Pentecostalism with equity. This is the major mistake of the mainline churches in my opinion. It is also a defect within the American way of seeing things, and which has spread somewhat over the western world since the 1940’s and 1950’s.

Those of you who have experienced the atmosphere in the mainline churches, have you noticed that they are too tolerant of deviant religious movements in the United States? How many times have you noticed that they do not take seriously that Oneness Pentecostals are not only in a slight error, but that they are essentially not really difference from the mainlines? However, there is an essential, non-negotiable difference that the mainline churches ignore at their peril. Pentecostalism is not based on serious theology or praxis as are the mainlines and the Catholics. The difference is so broad as to be unbridgeable. There is a fundamental base of irrationality in Pentecostalism. Mainlines and Catholics have serious theology backing just about everything up – whether we all agree on their basis is another subject.

Now, there might be an argument from skeptical unbelievers that all religions are irrational and thus equal. This is to be expected in some sense from unbelievers who have left irrational Christianity and have become unbelievers. However, it must be understood that this skeptical position is not based upon a serious comparison and study; it is based upon mirror-imaging broader Christianity with the skeptics own experience – and who can blame them? I was such a person myself for many years, and I fully sympathize with the position. But, it is a fundamentally unserious position to equate Pentecostalism with mainlines or Catholics. There is too much theology supporting the mainlines and the Catholics and there is virtually nothing supporting the Pentecostals and Charismatic position. This is a very shocking thing to contemplate. Most people think that there has to be something supporting the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements. No – there is nothing. Read the histories of the movement when it started around 1901-1906. It is pure irrationality which mixed some Christianity with American paganism. The leaders of the movement were ignorant and uneducated with the exception of one out of several dozen leaders.

For a quick summary, the Catholics and Protestants take their reasoning traditions from Saint Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, and expanded upon this base throughout the Middle Ages with scholasticism. Augustine and Aquinas built upon the foundations laid by Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, who also built upon thinkers before them, whom I cannot recall at this time. The Protestants starting with Luther and Calvin were a very intellectual people who challenged the Catholics church of the time to reform. Everything about Christianity of the major Protestants and the Catholics is based upon extremely highly educated intellectualism. Pentecostalism was formed by uneducated and ignorant preachers. This is a fact. And this is the reason why Pentecostalism is not on an equitable level as the mainlines and the Catholics

This is why Ex-Pentecostals has a “better” Truth, as it were, than the Pentecostals.

[I wish I could expand further upon this basis some time. Perhaps a few of us might be able to do this.]

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

This is a very good article. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Not on topic,but i have to say you are doing a GREAT job with this blog! You have very intelligent and constructive thoughts on this new wave pentecostal crap! I have recently came involved with it in my country –Hungary- where this shame of the earth is called the „flock of faith” . I have almost become a victim of them. I was raised as lutheran in a semi religiuos family, i went to a lutheran high school. and i was a boy scout in a hardcore roman catholic boy scout team for 8 years. So i happen to know much about religion. I have always believed in God but i never considered myself christian. I didnt like any idea of organized religion at all.
I met these pentecostals a few years ago,through the medical university,where they invited me for a film „23 minutes in hell” the film was pretty retarded,but after it here was a conversation with these preachers,who somehow managed to scare the shit out of me,and they really threatened me that i am on my way to „the lake of fire” . I have nevered believed in eternal damnation(it just didnt make sense with the loving christian god separating family members,friends in afterlife for eternity) till that evening,nor have i lived with the fear of death.
These people have changed this,and now i live in constant fear everyday,even though i havent joined their church. These people have ruined my life,because i always have the feeling „what if they are right?!? What IF??? „ .
After this event i attended a few of their gatherings,because i was so so scared to death all day about hell and satan,and had nightmares frequently. However i just didnt like the idea of the religion they were offering me. All the people i was speaking to had this „irritating overwhelming syrup kindness” and that retarded stupid „sheep” smile . i have never ever in my life met so brainwashed people. I found them and their whole movement despicable,and extremely narrow-minded. They take the more than thousand year old bible as literal truth. How can someone serously be so braindead?!? The book is full of contradictions,misinterpretations,mistranslations,not to mention the bible was put together by the same catholic church they despise more than anything?!? (saying it is the „whore of babylon” ) i mean seroiusly how can someone think the world was created in 6 days?!? And saying that all the contradictions are not contradictions ,we „must not argue with god” because he „has it all sorted” „he works in mysterious ways and we are not to question that” and we do not have the right to think about it we just have to „accept Jesus Christ in our heart,and leave „everything else to God” ?!? how can someone say someone is going to hell just because he wasnt baptized as an adult ? Would you want to spend eternity with this „god”? i certainly wouldnt. I think this is a fake „god” made in mans own image. By the way as i got to know these people i found that they are HUGE hypocrites in general. They think they are good christians just because the are virgins(or reject sex since they were „saved” ) ,dont drink alcohol,dont smoke,and dont do drugs? Their whole life revolvs around going to church all the time,and donating huge amounts of cash to the „flock of faith” . they are like the pharisee –s int he bible. They follow RULES! And they seem to miss the most important christian value :LOVE…. They say all the lutherans,calvinists and catholics in our country are going to eternal torment,regardless of how much they believe. They have this extremely paranoid thinking seeing satans work in everything. One of them told me:”Satan wants you to think with your brain. God wants you to think with your „heart”(which in my interpretation means:learn to accept and not critisize completely irrational narrow minded thinking) They told me listening to your rational self will certanly lead you to eternal damnation,because it is the devils tool to turn you away from Christ. Their pastor is an incredibly evil and corrupt man(he has mental power over his flock similar to the one hitler had int he third reich),who is one of the most richest men in the country. How christian isn’t it?!? They have this stupid doctrine,that he who has strong faith,god will „bless” him with wealth and wont be sick ever. How hypocritical! This is against the bible,which they say they take as literal truth,written by God himself. LoL. Meanwhile they say who masturbates or smokes a joint or gets drunk in the weekends will be „taken out of the book of life and will be cast into the lake of fire”. They have these meetings called „prayer-commando”,in which they pray for illness,sorrow,and economical downfall of the people they proclaim as enemies(mainly catholics and people who renounced and left the flock of faith church) . Of course they find this completely compatible with scripture,saying „this is for their enemies own good,because this will lead them to repent,and accept the „true” christ as their savoir. LoL. Many people have been reported dying in cancer or commiting suicide after these „prayer commando”-s. it works like voodoo or somekind of a „psychic warfare”!
Not to mention their shady political agendas. Contrary to the traditionally soft rightist/conservative political view of the traditional churches they support a very contradictory leftist idea,which is opposed to patriotism(which is of the devil. Who else?!?),supports zionism and the politics of israel above all,even our OWN country politcs. (they say this is because jews are the supreme chosen race of god,and we have to bow before gods choice,even though the gospel says God loves each and every one of humans the same)

These guys have made me decide finally to avoid any organized religion in my life,especially christianty.I Will continue to believe in God,and believe in christian values(and try to maintain them in my life as best as i can ),but not the docrine itself. I think the more you are stuck on the details of religion,the more you miss out the most important big picture.

Anonymous said...

Wow that was a long comment. To the person before me. I feel bad for you. Don't listen to these strange people. Don't let them ruin a relationship with God. He is truly wonderful. If you love the Lord and have a relationship with him then you will be in heaven. The bible can indeed be very confusing but I still think there are good things in it that people should follow. Listen to your concious. You know in your heart the difference between right and wrong. Don't stress about this. I think the Lord gives is many chances not to end up eternally damned. I personally believe in hell, but not the fire and brimstone kind. I think its a true separation from God, that will be hell for people.Seems to me that your church really focuses in on negetivity. I heard a high priest in the Satanic churh say once, that at mass they would call on all the evil spirits by focusing on anything and everything negative. If it was a positive thing, they would turn it into a negative thing. When a church can pray for the illness and death of someone they dont agree with, to me that is devilish. I really hate when people use religion as a weapon agaisnt people. Im sorry the people in your beautiful country have been subjected to this horrible religion. Just dont lose your faith in Jesus. He loves you and is most likely very angry at what these people are doing, and rest assured they most likely are going to end up in hell for being heretics.

Bill Iskra said...

I was in the United Pentecostal Church for 14 years and I am embarassed to say that I accepted most of what I was taught because I never really studied the Bible or Church History for myself .It took me a few years to see how abusive that the leadership ir and how hateful many people are of anyone who disagrees with what they believe . I suffered alot of depression for years as I was brainwashed into believing that I would be lost if I did not attend a church that believed the same as the UPC .

The one thing I noticed over the years while I was in UPC is that many people in various denominations seemsed to be very happy and loving people . I saw good Catholics , Lutherans , Methodists , Presbyterians , and you name them . When I finally left the UPC , I gradually began to realize that having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and showing the love of Jesus Christ is what matters to God and many people obviously had the love of Jesus Christ in their heart .

I realize that many people will disagree with me but I believe that although a demoniation may be wrong on one or more points regarding the Bible , that does not make someone lost. I have read enough of the Bible to know that nobdy deserves to be saved on the basis of how well that they interpret the Bible . Actually the Bible does contain some errors and certainly God is not going to condemn someone for the errors in the Bible .

I believe that God knows what is in everyone's heart and He has provided the perfect sacrifice for our sins through His Son Jesus Christ . He knows whether someone has accepted or rejected His Son and He does not need alot of judgemental people judging them by how they were Baptized , what church they attended , whether they consume alcohol or not etc. Many people who are judgemntal need to spend time judging themselves .

I would like to conclude by saying that I believe there are some people who do not attend churches either because they are confused , fearful of not matching up to what is expected by many churches , especially those of require 10 percent of one's income , or they have been hurt so bad that their wounds never healed . To say that God does not accept those people and that the sacrifice of His Son Jesus Christ cannot cover their sins is to ignorantly declare that God cannot see inside ot each individual's heart .

Bill Iskra said...

This is my first time I have spent very much time looking at the posts . I can see people have been hurt by Pentecostalism and it is good there is a place where people can vent their feelings .

Healthy communications among Christians in various denominations is vital to Christianity . I do not believe that Christians have to comp;romise on what they believe the Bible teaches or what they see in Church History . I do however believe that they need to have enough love in their heart to listen to people who do not agree with them . I have a real p;roblem with people who think that they have so much knowledge of the Bible that it is their God given authority to tell Catholics that they cannot be saved if they do not leave the Catholic Church . Really ? Says who ? Then there are those who will find fauts with the Presbyterians or Methodists because of some of their problems and thet declatre that people cannot go to those churches and be saved . I am wondering who they think does the saving .

One problem I have run into with some churches is their insistence that Christians must give 10 p;ercent of their income to their church . That is in addition to what they give for offerings such as Sunday School or Foriegn Missions . I haoppen to know that it is not financially feasible for every Christian to do that . I also find no New Testament Scripture as a basis for tithing .

I have a love for the Bible and for many churches but I do not ever want to get to the place where I dictate to everyone where they should and should not go to church or that they have to go to church or that they have to agree with everything that I claim that the Bible says . I terminated a friendship with a couple of people in UPC because they were so insistent that the Baptismal formula must be in the name of Jesus in order to be saved and that everyone else that is not Baptized that way is wrong . I happen to have studied about Baptism and it does not teach that anyhone is saved by a Bap;tismal formula . I personally always feel good inside when I just try to be myself and let God take care of the differences in what people believe . I used to live in fear that God was going to punish me if I did not save enough souls . I know now that God does not want me to make myself sick trying to change everything that I cannot change .

Anonymous said...

To your final point:

Pentecostalism was formed by uneducated and ignorant preachers. This is a fact and...why Ex-Pentecostals has a “better” Truth, as it were, than the Pentecostals.

I also noticed that most of the congregation weren't the sharpest knives in the drawer either. But you do know that they would refute that my stating 1 Cor 1:27 out of context, don't you? ;-)

JSTER said...

I am an ex pentecostal (upci) preacher. I left 2 years ago and all of this is very helpful to me.
I would like to say that since being blessed with a departure from a cloaked satanic cult.....i have lost over 50 lbs. No more expensive trips to resturants at 10 pm. And fellowships....halelujah. I could... and eventually will tell my entire story (12 years in an emotional hell hole) but as to the gluttony issue I think it has alot to do with the preachers. They preach against absolutely everything except food. That is the only freedom prisoners have so what you have is a group of folks that splurge in the food area because they can. Its the one thing the preacher wont touch....most likely he also is a product of his enviroment.
To all those dealing with surviving a christian cult keep moving and healing. Accept being duped ithappens to the best of us, talk about it with someone who cares and most of all try and forgive but never forget...historicly tuition has always been expensive...use your eperience as edecuation. And edecuate others about the dangers of mind manipulaters...which the word manipulation is defined as witchcraft....(upci are masters)..cloaked houses of evil.

Janey said...

I agree fully with the article. However, I think the appeal of Pentecostalism is that it's emotional and anti-intellectual at its core. I think some worshippers feel the highly educated, intellectual approach to Christianity is cold, out of touch with the common man, and snobbish. I myself have no problems with intellectualism, but I know a lot of ordinary folks who feel "out of place" in traditional churches - hence the rise of Pentecostalism and similar sects.

Rachel said...

I second that thought: no more eating out at 10pm. I was getting fat and it was costing way too much, given that the church got the first fruits and all.

More to the post, our truth is better than theirs becuase we hav eht fire-ball preaching! Our truth is based mostly on how I feel and how well the crowd feels.

Anonymous said...

Very much untrue!! I am an educated Pentecostal!! However I do see your point concerning obesity, however that is also among Lutherans and Catholics! What we all need is a relationship with Jesus Christ. Thanks again for your concern. God Bless

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Anonymous said...

I am glad to see the above post telling the truth of Catholism and its Christian daughter religious organisations.

My Christianity comes from the Apostles of Jesus the Messiah. The promises of God has always been to the Jews and that who the Apostles were. Read it for yourself.

Acts 2