A Progressive Theo-Political Blog Bringing You The Best and Worst of Baptist Life.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Is Dwight McKissic The AntiChrist???

Of course not!

But Dwight thinks that a gay man is the AntiChrist....

In late September, the Rev. Dwight McKissic made this assertion at a Values Voter Summit attended by other prominent Religious Right figures.

Rob Boston reports...
McKissic, pastor of Cornerstone Baptist Church in Arlington, Texas, put forth slim evidence for the assertion, citing a murky passage in the eleventh chapter of the Book of Daniel. Interestingly, the verse in question, Daniel 11:37, does not mention the Antichrist by name. It talks instead about a prophecy concerning a Persian king who will amass great power and oppress God’s people.

This monarch, the King James Version of the Bible says, will not share “the desire of women.”

Although other translations of the scripture differ radically, to McKissic, the KJV text is proof enough. He asked the crowd, “Could it be that the Antichrist himself may be homosexual?” Read more here.

McKissic has a history of making reprehensible Falwellian-like statements...

After Hurricane Katrina devastated the city of New Orleans, McKissic wondered out-loud if God sent Katrina "to purify our nation."

In the latest installment of his 13-part series entitled Possible Solutions for What Ails The SBC, popular blogger Nathan Finn writes....

Southern Baptists are not evangelistic because of the culture war....Seriously, Southern Baptists are not evangelistic because the last couple of decades our passion for lost souls has been weakened by our passion for politics. Not that Christians should retreat from politics. And not that Christians should fail to engage the culture. But Southern Baptists in particular seem to be under the corporate impression that marriage amendments, more pro-life judges, more Ten Commandments displays, government-sponsored school prayer and Bible reading, and ignoring the environment (you know, the platform of the Religious Right) will somehow soften the heart of our lost culture and make it easier to share the gospel. Whatever. I know that many probably take umbrage with this reason, but the fact remains that the people in our pews are much more concerned with gay marriage than with their lost neighbors. And so are our pastors. And so are our seminary and college students. What a terrible tragedy if conservative Christians actually “wins” America for the Religious Right while failing to truly share the gospel with lost Americans. Quit inviting politicians with vague commitments to Jesus to speak at the Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting. Quit holding Justice Sunday rallies at churches.

Quit passing out those obnoxious voter guides at churches; you know, the ones that not-so-subtly inform people they will incur the wrath of the Almighty if they don’t vote for the candidate with a “higher” rating. Quit preaching sermon series and writing books and articles that imply the highest calling of the Christian it to elect the right politicians so they can pick the right judges. Be an evangelist for Jesus instead of an evangelist for the Republicans, and no, they are not the same thing. And they never will be the same thing (no matter how many times a Republican politician lies to you and tells you he supports your values).

Wow. I couldn't agree more...

Following that same line of thought, I propose that Partisan Personalities like the Rev. Dwight McKissic are what truly AILS the Southern Baptist Convention.

Evangelist for Jesus or Evangelist for the Republican Party?

Further, why has a faction of Southern Baptists (i.e. Memphis Declaration supporters) aligned themselves with a man who sounds more like Jerry Falwell than an "irenic conservative"???

Southern Baptists who desire reform and wish to stop their tee-pee sized "Big Tent" from shrinking should think twice before jumping in bed with a man who has become a leader in the radical Religious Right.

Unfortunately, I believe that mistake has already been made...

Daily Show and Left Behind Video Game

The Daily Show weighs in on the new Left Behind video game in This Week With God.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Wiley Drake Calls Obama "The Enemy"

Yesterday, the Associated Baptist Press reported that Rick Warren's Saddleback Church is hosting a two-day Global AIDS Summit. Leaders from churches, denominations, health, NGO's, Christian organizations, governments, businesses, and the entertainment industry will meet together to discuss how they can work with the community of faith to end the AIDS Crisis which has killed over 25 million people since 1981. Summit participants will hear messages from Laura Bush, Sen. Bill Frist, Sen. Sam Brownback, Bill Gates, Bono, Franklin Graham, President of World Vision, President of World Relief, and dozens of well-known doctors, psychologists and psychiatrists who are concerned about AIDS. The Summit is NOT a Church Service and its speakers will include both Republicans and Democrats - Christians and non-Christians.

Senator Barack Obama (D - III) will also be in attendance.

Thus far at least 18 pro-life groups have condemned Rick Warren for inviting Obama, who is pro-choice.

The loud and controversial Wiley Drake has called on Warren to rescind the invitation "to the enemy Senator Obama."

Currently, Wiley Drake serves as the second vice-president of the Southern Baptist Convention and as pastor of First Southern Baptist Church of Buena Park, California. Wiley is known best for leading the SBC in their 8-year long boycott of The Walt Disney Company and his personal ties with the Unification Church (Moonies). Wiley also insists on calling gay men "sodomites." But his obvious obsession with the so-called homosexual agenda must be left to a future post...

On his characterization of Senator Obama as "the enemy" - let's remind Wiley of his words in 2001...
"Under no circumstances does my affiliation with any religious organization or any religious leader endorse or give my approval of their beliefs,"

Surely, Rick Warren would agree as well! Inviting Senator Obama to the Global AIDS Summit does not mean that Rick Warren endorses Obama's pro-choice position!

Another question for Wiley. Should Laura Bush be uninvited as well??? In 2001, Laura sounded like a pro-choicer when she declared that Roe v. Wade should not be overturned. Is the wife of President Bush the enemy as well? What about Bill Gates? The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has given the Planned Parenthood Federation over 12 million since 1998. Uninvite - yes or no?

So, Partisan Wiley can cooperate with Moonies but not a popular Democratic Senator who happens to be pro-choice?

Talk about narrowing the parameters of cooperation.....good grief.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Queen James and North Carolina Baptists

Will Gay Unfriendly Southern Baptists Expel King James???

That's what this popular article asks. For a chuckle and more than you ever desired to know about King James himself - check it out.

Now that the North Carolina Baptist Convention has threatened to expel any church that is friendly to gays, does this mean that they are going to abandon the King James Bible? After all, his subjects joked "Elizabeth was King: now James is Queen."

Southern Baptists and anti-gay fundamentalists might not like to hear it but just listen to what King James wrote to George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham: "I naturally so love your person, and adore all your other parts, which are more than ever one man had." James also wrote that "I desire only to live in the world for your sake."

Lest there be any doubts among Southern Baptists investigators about this being erotic as opposed to platonic affection, the far older James called angelic young Villiers "my sweet child and wife, and grant that ye may ever be a comfort to your dear dad and husband." In return, Villiers, the subject of the nursery rhyme, Georgie Porgie, wrote James that "I cannot now think of giving thanks for friend, wife, or child; my thoughts are only bent on having my dear Dad and Master's legs soon in my arms." Villiers wrote as a man who "threatens you, that when he once gets hold of your bedpost again, never to quit it." James wrote to Villiers that "whether you loved me now . . . better than at the time I shall never forget at Farnham, where the bed's head could not be found between the master and his dog." READ IT ALL.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

A Tribute To Those Annyoing Techies....

After a horrible season with losses to both VANDERBILT and KENTUCKY, you still can't win. We're down and you let us do the kickin. Absolutely Embarassing...

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Private Prayer Language in the Waco Trib

Kay King of Eddy, Texas has her Letter to the Editor published in the Waco Tribune on Private Prayer Language. Check it out. Also stop by later for the best PPL cartoon yet...
“Seminary votes to prohibit praying in tongues,” reports the Trib Oct. 19. Voting against a gift God himself thought his people needed?

[Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary president] Paige Patterson’s intolerance of private prayer language among his seminarians is more dangerous than the delusion of an unbeliever.

In their zealous quest to control denominational agenda and protect traditions of man, have these voting regents lost their fear of God to the level of exalting themselves to be like the Most High?

God’s word — all of it — is already settled in heaven. Where, then, are these theologians who dissect, vote on, forbid or choose not to “make room for” God’s gifts?

Tragically, far from the beginning of wisdom.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Purpose-Driven Terrorism?!?!?!?!?

Last week Southern Baptist evangelist and best-selling author Rick Warren travelled to Syria and met with Syrian President Bashir Assad.

Apparently Warren's visit left a bad taste in the mouths of some fundamentalists...

Joseph Farah of WorldNetDaily writes...

For a long time I've held off criticizing mega-church leader Rick Warren, author of the best-selling "The Purpose Driven Life," even though I have been sorely tempted.

When he joined up with now-disgraced National Association of Evangelicals leader Ted Haggard to suggest man-induced global warming represented an impending calamity, I didn't say too much. I questioned it, but I let it go.

When he joined Haggard again in writing an open letter to President Bush urging government action to fight global poverty, I didn't say a word – even though I thought it ironic. After all, it is the church's responsibility to help the poor. It is not government's responsibility.

But now that Rick Warren has traveled to and provided legitimacy to a hostile foreign government, presided over by a brutal fascist dictator who hates Jews, threatens Israel, subverts neighboring Lebanon, imprisons and terrorizes its own citizens and even kills them in massive numbers when they stand up in revolt – now I have to denounce this impostor in the strongest terms possible.

It is my biblical mandate to do so.

In response to his critics, Warren said....

"I believe it is a mistake to not talk to nations considered hostile _ isolation and silence has never solved conflict anywhere, whether between spouses or between nations,"

Warren's planned visit in March to North Korea has also raised conservative eyebrows. In an interview with the PBS show "Religion & Ethics Newsweekly," Warren commented....

"People say, `Well, you're being a pawn. You're being used,' and things like that. The truth is I want to get the Good News out," Warren said. "My reasoning is: why not? There are people in North Korea that have not heard for 60 years there is a God."
Good for Rick Warren. Southern Baptists are supposed to be Great Commission Christians, right???

Perhaps Warren will soon pull a Jimmy and shower those Communist Cubans with a little Christian Love????

Sneaky suspicion, but if that were to happen my gut tells me that the messengers to the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention would promptly denounce Warren and Saddleback.

We all know that the SBC is some-kinda-good at telling the world what and who they're AGAINST....

Sorry I couldn't resist. 23 posts and over 40 days since I gave the SBC a good kick, BigDaddyWeave-style. Just needed a little inspiration of sorts.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Here's Your Patriot Act.....

Watch as the UCPD taser an unarmed student at least four times inside the UCLA library.

As he's being dragged out the student screams....

"Here's your Patriot Act, here's your {beep} abuse of power"

Students who shouted at the officers to stop the tasering and demanded their names and badge numbers were told to leave or they too would be tasered.

I've seen quite a few folks get kicked out of the UGA library. A couple were even arrested. But nobody was tasered. Absolutely Incredible.

Read a first-hand report here with other links as well.

Tennessee Baptists and the Bible

Bible Not Good Enough For The Tennessee Baptist Convention

I'm not surprised either...

Friday, November 17, 2006

On Faith

Check out this new project created by The Washington Post and Newsweek magazine called "On Faith."

Throughout the week, moderators Sally Quinn and Jon Meacham will pose various religious questions to the panelists. Each panelist can response and the readers are allowed to post their own thoughts and comments.

Panelists include well-known names such as Madeleine Albright, Randall Balmer, Marcus Borg, John Dominic Crossan, Sam Harris, Richard Land, Martin Marty, Brian McLaren, Al Mohler, David Saperstein, Gardner Taylor, Cal Thomas, Desmond Tutu, Rick Warren, Jim Wallis and Starhawk!

Check out the website. Sign up for the XML Feed.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

New House Majority Leader is a Baptist

This is the face of the 2nd most powerful man in the United States House of Representatives.

His name is Steny Hoyer

He's a Democrat AND a Baptist.

Majority Leader Hoyer is a long-time member of Broadview Baptist Church in Temple Hills, Maryland. Broadview is affiliated with the Alliance of Baptists.

Note to Richard Land and Baptist Press: Broadview is not a Southern Baptist Church. At least get your facts straight....

Earlier this month, Rep. Hoyer was elected to his 14th term in Congress defeating Steve Warner by a margin of 66% (83-17).

Currently the House Minority Whip, Hoyer has represented the 5th district of the State of Maryland since 1981. Before being chosen as the Minority Whip in 2002, Hoyer served as the Deputy Majority Whip from 1987-1989, chair of the Democratic Caucus from 1989 to 1994 and as the chief candidate recruiter for House Democrats from 1995-2000. Since being elected to Congress in 1981, Hoyer has built a reputation as a defender of Federal employees and a leader on education and human and civil rights issues. Learn more about Hoyer HERE and HERE.

Note: Steny Hoyer is expected by most to soundly defeat John Murtha (see this post) in tomorrow's election for House Majority Leader.

UPDATE: Hoyer is NOW the Majority Leader. It wasn't even close (149-86).

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Mike Huckabee's Long Long Honeymoon

Arkansas Governor and Southern Baptist, Mike Huckabee, has been touted as a candidate for the 2008 Republican nomination. According to the Times Record, ole Huckabee has found a nifty way to get around laws preventing public officials from receiving personal gifts worth more than $100. State law allows public officials to receive wedding gifts. Celebrating his 32nd wedding anniversary this year, Mike Huckabee is still accepting wedding gifts.
“Wedding” registries in the names of Gov. Mike Huckabee and his wife, Janet, have been set up at two department store chains in advance of the Huckabees’ move out of the Governor’s Mansion into a private home.

The term-limited governor leaves office in January, and friends of Janet Huckabee created the registries at Dillard’s and Target stores to help facilitate their transition to private life, Huckabee spokeswoman Alice Stewart said Friday. The Huckabees purchased a 7,000-square-foot home in North Little Rock this year. “Some ladies who are friends of Janet’s are giving her a housewarming party,” Stewart said.


Sunday, November 12, 2006

Feingold Declines To Run In '08

To much surprise, Russ Feingold WILL NOT be running for President in 2008. Although Feingold would likely have received much netroots support, this may be a good decision. With control of both the House and Senate, we need as many Progressive voices as possible on Capitol Hill. Feingold's seniority on the Foreign Relations, Intelligence, Judiciary, and Budget Committees is also a bonus. Check out a snippet of Feingold's statement below...

Dear Friends and Supporters, On Sunday, November 12th in Racine, I will hold my 1000th Listening Session with the people of Wisconsin. Before reaching that milestone, I want you to know that I've decided to continue my role as Wisconsin's Junior Senator in the U.S. Senate and not to seek the Democratic nomination for President in 2008....

Yet, while I've certainly enjoyed the repeated comments or buttons saying, "Run Russ Run", or "Russ in '08", I often felt that if a piece of Wisconsin swiss cheese had taken the same positions I've taken, it would have elicited the same standing ovations. This is because the hunger for progressive change we feel is obviously not about me but about the desire for a genuinely different Democratic Party that is ready to begin to reverse the 25 years of growing extremism we have endured.

I'm sure a campaign for President would have been a great adventure and helpful in advancing a progressive agenda. At this time, however, I believe I can best advance that progressive agenda as a Senator with significant seniority in the new Senate serving on the Foreign Relations, Intelligence, Judiciary and Budget Committees. Although I have given it a lot of thought, I cannot muster the same enthusiasm for a race for President while I am trying simultaneously to advance our agenda in the Senate. In other words, if I really wanted to run for President, regardless of the odds or other possible candidates, I would do so. However, to put my family and all of my friends and supporters through such a process without having a very strong desire to run, seems inappropriate to me. And, yes, while I would strongly prefer that our nominee in 2008 be someone who had the judgment to oppose the Iraq war from the beginning, I am prepared to work as hard as I can through the Progressive Patriots Fund, and consistent with my duties in the Senate, to maintain or increase our gains from November 7 in the Congress and, of course, to elect a Democrat as President in 2008.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Why I Still Like Jesse Jackson...

Because of stories like this....
Last Wednesday he was on CNN answering the questions about his relevance and how it felt to be 65.

Last Thursday he was in Pontiac, Mich., campaigning for attorney general Amos Williams and to help prevent Proposal 2 from going into effect.

Last Friday he was inside the Sacramento Kings' locker room.


But this time there were no cameras, no invited media pundits, no staged junket -- nothing to serve his personal purpose, like so many of the "events" he shows up at where he's accused of being there for himself and not for the people in the middle of the storm.

This time Jesse Jackson was legit. Sincere. He knew this had nothing to do with him. He first went to the Bulls' locker room and asked Ben Wallace to come with him. Unable to say no, Wallace followed him down the corridor into the locker room of the team that had just beaten the Bulls by one, after the Bulls had a four-point lead with 17 seconds left.

Back in the mirrored area, where the media is not allowed, Ron Artest was finishing getting dressed.

Ron, meet Ben. Ben, meet Ron. Let us pray.

It was the first time since they initiated the brawl in Detroit almost two years ago that Wallace and Artest had been face-to-face in the same room. It was a moment the Reverend had to be a part of, if not cause. Amens said, hugs given, within minutes it was done. Over. Wallace left the locker room, Artest finished getting dressed.....

For so long he's been accused of being a lot of things -- grandstander, opportunist, philanderer, agitator, instigator are just a few words that often accompany his name -- but being a bird of prey in this was not one of them.

In the name of sports -- of which he is a huge fan -- Jesse Jackson came genuine. No hidden agenda, no self-indulgent prophecy, no political posturing, no grandstanding. No selfishness.

Just selflessness.

And Ted...Meth Was A Bad Choice

Earlier today, we discussed the Ted Haggard debacle in my American Christianity class at Baylor. After that discussion, I stumbled upon this image of Ron Burgandy giving Ted Haggard a telling off...

Frank Melton: Gun-Toting Mayor???

One of my best friends from high school and college will testify next week as a defense witness at the trial of Jackson, Mississippi Mayor Frank Melton.

Last February, Mayor Melton was invited to speak (by my friend) at the Young Democrats club of the Mississippi College School of Law. Later, Melton was arrested and charged with a felony for allegedly bringing a gun onto the campus of Mississippi College. However, my friend "did not notice whether Melton was armed when he was on campus." If convicted, the Democratic Mayor will be forced to resign from office. Read more HERE.

Frank Melton is indeed an interesting character. Elected in 2005 with over 80% of the vote, Melton is known for his "hands-on" approach to attacking black-on-black drug crimes. Melton has been accused of racial profiling by the ACLU relating to his drug searches and raids. However, many have called the charges against Melton to be politically motivated and a handful of civil-rights leaders have come to his defense - including Charles Evers, the older brother of the late Medgar Evers.

Less than two months ago, Mayor Melton was indicted on malicious mischief and burglary charges....

The 56-year-old Melton was indicted last week on malicious-mischief and burglary charges, accused of leading a group of teenagers with sledgehammers in smashing up a house that he claimed was a drug den. He was also charged with carrying a gun on school property.

If found guilty, Melton could get up to 50 years in prison. Two police officers who served as Melton's bodyguards were also charged.

The indictment was the culmination of a furor that had been building for months around Melton, the city's second black mayor in modern times, over his penchant for picking up a gun, putting on police gear and taking part in sweeps, raids and roadblocks despite warnings from prosecutors that he was impersonating an officer. The arrest has led many people in this crime-ridden city to rally to Melton's side. Days after his indictment, the mayor promised a throng of supporters outside City Hall that he would stay the course, despite calls for his resignation from some City Council members.

Ironically, just months ago Melton came under fire from NRA activists for promising to ban all gun shows on the Mississippi State Fairgrounds....

Dateline NBC is planning to cover Melton's Gun-Toting trial beginning next week.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The Blame Game Begins

From today's Washington Times...

The Rev. Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics and Religious Liberties Commission, said, "Republicans would have been better off with Mr. Bush heading the ticket, as if it were a presidential year, because Southern Baptists and evangelicals don't feel the same frustration toward Mr. Bush as they feel toward Republicans in Congress. They have much more affection for him than for Republicans in the House and the Senate."

Let me be as polite as possible. This man is a proven MORON. Southern Baptists, how much do you pay this guy to say such foolish things? Six figures I bet. Land has his head so far up Bush's Butt that he can't see the Forest for the Trees....

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Ride the Democratic Wave...

Today was a Good Day.

Tomorrow is Gonna Be Better....

In the words of the great Fisher Barfoot...

Dems, You Done Did Good.

My childhood Congressman, Jim Marshall of Macon, was re-elected.

My Congressman while at UGA, John Barrow, was re-elected.

My current Texas Congressman and member of Calvary Baptist Church, Chet Edwards, was re-elected.

My former boss, Congressman John Lewis, was re-elected.

And hopefully, the United States Senate will have one less RACIST by tomorrow!

Monday, November 06, 2006

We Are Deceivers and Liars...

The following is a portion from Ted Haggard's letter of apology read to the congregation of New Life Church...
I am a deceiver and a liar. There is a part of my life that is so repulsive and dark that I’ve been warring against it all of my adult life.

For extended periods of time, I would enjoy victory and rejoice in freedom. Then, from time to time, the dirt that I thought was gone would resurface, and I would find myself thinking thoughts and experiencing desires that were contrary to everything I believe and teach.

Through the years, I’ve sought assistance in a variety of ways, with none of them proving to be effective in me. Then, because of pride, I began deceiving those I love the most because I didn’t want to hurt or disappoint them.

Jim Wallis offers a nice response to this sad sad situation in an article entitled We Are All Sinners.

Ted Haggard says, “I am a sinner. I have fallen. I desperately need to be forgiven and healed.” And that’s just what we should all pray for now - for Ted, his family, and his church. In the letter to his church, Haggard said, “I have an overwhelming, all-consuming sadness in my heart for the pain that you and I and my family have experienced over the past few days.” Me too, Ted, me too.

Andrew Sullivan also addresses the Haggard debacle in his Quote of the Day...

"There is part of my life that is so repulsive and dark that I've been warring against it all of my adult life," - pastor Ted Haggard, referring, I suppose, to his homosexual orientation.

For those who still - amazingly - believe that being gay is somehow a "choice," consider Haggard. If he could have chosen not to be gay, don't you think he would have? Even though he apparently believes being gay is "repulsive and dark" (while it is, in fact, just another wonderful way to be human), he still cannot prevail against it. It is integral to him. It has been "all of [his] adult life".

One day, he may realize, and I pray he does, that the only dark and repulsive thing is the closet, the betrayal of his wife and children, the destruction of a church, and the demonization of others in the same boat - all as a function of his own inability to face the truth. What is dark and repulsive is dishonesty.

Unfortunately for Haggard, his wife, and five kids - he will be submitting to the oversight of Dr. James Dobson per request of New Life's "overseers." The "assistence" Haggard sought in the past didn't work, so now he's turning to James Dobson and his pseudo-science ministries.

Hopefully, the hypocrisy of Ted Haggard will bring about some good. Perhaps the evangelical community as a whole could use this opportunity to build some humility. A little loving and welcoming of our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ could go a long long way....

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Bill Moyers for President?

From Ralph Nader's article at Common Dreams...
Moyers brings impressive credentials beyond his knowledge of the White House-Congressional complexes. He puts people first. Possessed of a deep sense of history relating to the great economic struggles in American history between workers and large companies and industries, Moyers today is a leading spokesman on the need to deconcentrate the manifold concentrations of political and economic power by global corporations. He is especially keen on doing something about media concentration about which he knows from recurrent personal experience as a television commentator, investigator, anchor and newspaper editor.

Moyers would bring to the Democratic Party a much needed understanding of the South, its political, populist and religious history and contemporary dynamics. His Baptist, Texas background would help his Party understand how to stop writing off the South to the Republicans from the Presidential to the state and local levels and how to become engaged in this fastest growing region of the nation.

Few people can bridge the perceived gaps between political regions. His books demonstrate that unique and calm ability to persuade people to come to grips with fundamentals. His presence in the Presidential primary debates would not be marginalized.

I'd vote to send this Texas Baptist to Pennsylvania Avenue. What about you?

Worst Person In The World!

Olbermann to Limbaugh: "Please Go Back On The Drugs"

Introducing E. Glenn Hinson....

Over at Levellers, Michael Westmoreland-White is doing a series on his mentors.

His fourth mentor is E. Glenn Hinson

Hinson was indeed a hated man during the Fundamentalist Takeover.

In 2001, the William Whitsitt Baptist Heritage Society awarded Dr. Hinson with their annual Courage Award. Get some Baptist Education and check Michael's post out.

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