Sincerity in Rule Keeping Can Destroy

You never know…lol

My friend gave me, “sincerity”, when I first started using the internet (which was a very long time ago) and I just keep using it. Sometimes it’s good…sometimes it’s bad. A bit sentimental to me now. :grin:

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I do not deny other influences. They are there. But societal pressure can be determinative. Look at the N word or “homophobic” comments. Society will not tolerate these, and those that do are punished severely. What if society took that view of premarital sex?

I agree with you that societal norms and pressure can be very powerful. When it was really frowned on to have a baby out of wedlock, it rarely happened. Now, with “Meh”, it is common.

There is a sense that we are on the same page. The difference is that you do not see any more or less objectively moral behaviors, while i see that there are some. And I would call them truth.

I have not heard about “The truth shall set you free.” No comment?

No objective truth, George?

I read a comment by a transgender person: “There are women with vaginas and women with penises.” Is that the truth? I have a relative that thinks the FBI is spying on him, and that some red cars on the road are those agents. is that the truth? He has a “truth well defined” view of it…

Of course, that is your view of it. But is it the truth? Was not in my heart when I said it, more a joke. But you are the arbiter of truth, right? Your view is the true view and others are the heretics. You do consider those against WO as “discriminators”, right? Is that the truth? Is your definition of discrimination the true one? Could there possibly be other views on the matter that might hold some truth?

I sense a touch of dogmatism on your part…

But the culture makes a huge difference. in the 20s and 30s primatial sex was not rampant as today. Yes, girls got pregnant, but the social sigma was high, and so there was a social price to pay for doing it and most of the time the taboo was honored. There are stats on this.

Do you think that in the Arab culture there is sex out of wedlock like here? And the story of Mary and Joseph also shows a cultures view of the matter.

I don’t sense that cultures are often built by design. Sometimes yes, but rarely. They come about by experience etc. That we, to be “faithful” must avoid sex before marriage is not impossible. Lots of people do it. You act as if the sex drive is untamable. it is not.

But our society makes a big thing of it. Do you remember the story of the cheer leader for the Cowboys, I believe? The other girls were speaking of their sexual experiences, and she said she was a virgin, and they went after her. I think the flesh can be conquered, but it is not easy. And society is no help.

Sure, while all of the babies out of the wedlock come as a result of “out of marriage sex”, that’s not ALL that “sex traditionalists” would object to. “Sex before marriage” tends to package a full spectrum of sexual activity, be it alone or with someone else, even when such activity has no chance of resulting in “babies out of wedlock”. Of course, it’s not something that we openly discuss in church, especially in sermons preached by pastors, because it’s a taboo issue that all are guilty of… hence it tends to be projected on our children as one’s hatred of personal shortcomings, or as Shakespeare would put it “The lady doth protest too much, methinks”

The problem is that churches tend to advocate sex repression in our children, while the pop culture then directs that repression when they dangle “alternative experiences” of “little bit here and there” to satisfy their sexual urges in exchange for anchoring these to some products, or celebrities that can then sell products, or simulated sex in a setting of porn consumption which becomes a major industry … mainly due to the culture of sexual repression. Likewise, we fail to distinguish that we don’t all have the same range when it comes to “sexual potential”. There’s a normal range of variation from a-sexual to hyper-sexual. Hence, a typical a-sexual wouldn’t understand the needs of hyper-sexual, and we project that onto some context of “obsession” when it simply a biology acting out.

So, without realizing it, we actually prepping our children for sexual exploitation by the culture. Whatever comes next is secondary to the root problem, which is the disconnect between our ideals that we attempt to raise and force on our children, and the actual reality of these ideals in culture that exists.

But we absolutely failing to address this issue in church, because we either choose to advocate suppression, or we don’t talk about it at all.

Hence, you can’t really compare abstaining from sex to abstaining from screaming “n words” :). I don’t feel an urge to scream “n word” when I see a black person. That’s not embedded into my biology.

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Well, the truth shall set you free is a concept told by Jesus to his disciples warning them that lack of ideals enslaves people to perpetual suffering of mediocrity.

But conceptual truth of Christainity isn’t academic, but it’s a full scope of truth that transforms societies. It’s more about “truth in hands” than it is “truth in one’s head”, and there is a difference that evades modern churches today who are satisfied with a concept of “knowing the truth” as that of correctly answering Sabbath school questions, while the person who’s sitting next to them is a single mom struggling to pay mortgage.

There’s nothing “freeing” about that brand of truth.



Sure, but we are not living in 20s and 30s, which I continually point out to you. The setting is different.

People are forced into late marriages by the very parents who say that they should marry before having sex, while sexual repression by traditionalists is exploited by corporate marketing who understand that packaging sex into an idea will have people who repress sex want the products that sex sells.

What it then turns into is the “freedom from repressive past” in a form of sexual revolution which Christian fundamentalism packaged as a giant bomb that exploded in their faces :).

So, I really don’t see how “more of the same” approach that you are advocating supposed to help anyone?

Sure, when a father disowns a daughter , or even worse - kills her, of course it serves as a great deterrent for out of wedlock pregnancies. Likewise, Arabs are paradoxically one of the largest consumers of pornography in the world, I’m not sure if they are trailing or leading Utah in that regard, but there seems to be a pattern there :slight_smile:

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t have or that we should give up on ideals. But ideal is not a dot. In certain scope it will be a range of “good-enough for now” rather than “you are never good enough unless”. And that’s the paradox of what we shift our children into today.

We recognize Biblical polygamy isn’t ideal, but Biblical narrative regulates it without prohibiting. Why? Because men could be contextual rarity in time of war and risks associated with male, and polygamy may be a necessary gap in time where women outnumber men, at least such is my personal hypothesis. Hence, Biblical narrative didn’t even count women, so we are only left to assume the demographics of the day. Men were necessary for survival, and they had to fill the gap for many women at times.

Hence, “Ideal” doesn’t always translate to “viable” or even “the best scenario now”, yet this is how we end up approaching these issues as though ideals are “locked in forever and ever” and have no cultural context against which we should weigh what we find more important in any-given era that we find ourselves in.

So, these are much more complex than “you do X and you will be better off”. Biblical morality is much more nuanced than what we’ve inhered from the recent iteration of fundamentalist past.


Sure, lots of people also run ultra marathons and graduate as Navy Seals. There’s a range of what each individual is capable of, and it has nothing to do with what “I want”. Why do you think some people find it difficult to quit smoking, while other just drop and never look back? People are different, and what they are able to accomplish or say “no” to greatly depends on the level of personal discipline, body chemistry, environment, etc.

I have enormous threshold for pain tolerance that I’ve developed using college sports, so I walk outside in the dead of winter and rub snow on myself to build up immunity to cold. People who see me think I’m nuts :). But I don’t just wake up one day and walk out in the snow. I start with cold showers all fall, so by the time snow comes it’s not that bad.

The point of the analogy is that we tend to separate ideals apart from reality that’s necessary for such ideals to be viable. And that’s what Church should be. It should be a community which supports each other from bottom up to achieve collective ideals.

Sure, if you don’t mind me asking a personal question, how accurately does that ideal reflect in your own life and experiences of people in your church? Again, it’s very easy to project an ideal, because projection of ideals doesn’t show “in between” requirements of achieving them.

It’s easy to put up a picture of David Goggins running a 100 mile race apart from the rest of the experiences that got David Goggins to accomplish what he did in life.

But, generally we are much more likely to project these ideals than we are to actually run and train with people to help them get there :). Hence, I would say… no. It’s not impossible, but apart from a support from family and community… that’s highly unlikely for many people who are left dealing with these issues on their own, because they are too afraid to admit their struggles on the open in church, because it’s not a safe thing to do… hence very few people actually do it.


IS Church a SAFE PLACE to discuss Inner Struggles???


IS Church a SAFE PLACE to discuss Inner Struggles???<<
I would suggest no!
Very Close friends on a “need to know” basis only…if one feels it needful.
Pragmatically, there are all levels of maturity and trustworthiness to be found “in the church.” Tread lightly, IT IS NOT HYPOCRISY…unless one is the town gossip.


There is a universal truth. What needs to be grasped is that we all experience and understand the universal truth differently. In a fast car, one passenger may sit there with white knuckles clenching the armrest wishing the driver to slow down. Another may sit there thinking “This car is so pedestrian.” The driver may be thinking “This is a nice safe, comfortable speed”. All of them experience the same reality, but they have different perceptions of it. So it is with Christ’s Love/Grace. The Grace (truth) is the same for all but we individually perceive & understand differently because of our past experience, because of our past learnings.


I disagree Robert,
God’s universal truths are not dependent upon the receptors judging them. They are true because He says they are true. The fact that satan’s “perception” rejected God’s truth’s does not mean they aren’t true.
Yes, indeed perceptions are different. I suggest one reason we have been here for 2000 yrs. since the cross is so we may hopefully by His forgiving grace and grace of instruction develop positions more attuned to His.
I suggest God’s view of Love is found in His justice, judgments, instruction and “unmerited favor”/stedfast love. I also suggest there are a few areas “at least” that we all might have a bone to pick with Him. :slight_smile:

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"I agree with you that societal norms and pressure can be very powerful. When it was really frowned on to have a baby out of wedlock, it rarely happened. Now, with “Meh”, it is common."

You will be pleased that things are changing:…/out-of-wedlock-births-declining-in-us-after-decades-…

"Do you think that in the Arab culture there is sex out of wedlock like here?"

There is, Allen…I know what point that you are making but there is definitely extramarital affairs by the men in those countries. In the oil-rich countries where money abounds it isn’t that unusual for men to have sex with foreign working women…or even have their own sex harems. Of course, extramarital affairs by women are punishable by death- so I suspect that they are less. :thinking:


According to the Christian Post (link that I provided to Allen) @ajshep :

"The Christian Post reported in August 2016 that contrary to conventional wisdom and their liberalized attitudes about sexuality, millennials are having less sex than previous generations, according to the data.

When controlled for time period and age, the only generation with a higher rate of sexual inactivity than 20 to 24 year olds was the one born in the 1920s, a study published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior showed."

So, it is closer to the 1920’s than one would think…

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The truth doesn’t change but the perception and understanding does. It is like the story of the blind men and the elephant. Each man was touching the elephant and describing something different - a different aspect of the same elephant. If one touched the sedan chair on top and started to describe that, it is not the elephant. It is useful to ride the elephant but it is not the elephant. The other problem with the sedan chair is that it is exclusive, it stops many from riding the elephant because they don’t fit.

No matter how dogmatic we get about our understanding of God, it is not the same as others. We can arrive at the same point, at the same understanding, from many different directions. Each has a different path but the path that I take and the path that you take, though they be different, I believe is still focused on the same God. Individuals who believe they have a full understanding of God, or the only understanding of God are deluded and arrogant. We have been provided sufficient understand in of God to be saved, but that is by no means all there is to God. We have eternity to learn and we still won’t learn it all.


Well, it is good the blind men Weren’t under his anus they would have had a lot of different perceptions.:slight_smile:
That is also why conservative Christians cherish the Bible. It removes a lot of “blindness” in the things revealed. The most important is that God has a Son who is God and He died for our sins. Jn. 3:16.


Let’s find the que from the word of God: At the Jerusalem council, was there an issue that needed to be dealt with, of course there was, and the issue was that the gentiles who had joined the church were required by the Jews to be circumscised, the Jerusalem council the matter was dealt there and then, Acts 11.
How can the two walk together unless they agree, the church must preach the truth according to the bible and seek to live by every word that issues from the mouth of God.
Wo is a call not from the scriptures but from men, it is inconsistent with scriptures. It’s become an emotional issues for those who can’t say “it is written”…if Jesus be our example of doing things, do we suppose He misjudged by picking only males of the 12 disciples?

Jesus also walked everywhere, with minor exception of using a donkey for transportation. I hope that’s a hint enough of what I would write up next, but I’m not sure it would convince you.


Maybe so, but that is still a valid and true pereception of an elephant. It is not the whole picture, but it is still part of the elephant.

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