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About Okrahomer

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    Separates Water & Dry Land

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  1. Divine Love Is Conditional

    I love this!
  2. First: please accept my apologies. I do not object to you personally. I'm sure you're a fine fellow, a good husband and father, and a valuable member of your community. I'd probably love having you as a neighbor, and I personally would have no problem with you enjoying an adult beverage in my presence. It does not offend or hurt me. I grew up in Oklahoma around all kinds of Christians who drank, and it has never caused a problem for me. Second: I have been the recipient of an SOS call in the wee hours of the morning to pick-up a friend (a life-long Lutheran) who had gone a little too far with his "Christian Liberty"; and I saw firsthand how alcohol impacted his life in a very negative way. We had been friends since childhood, and so he trusted me; and he was right to do so. We love each other as brothers to this day; and he has told me that it was his faith--more than anything--that helped him get sober. But what I have difficulty with is using scripture to justify a lack of empathy and love with respect to those who do not believe as I do--including Jehovah's Witnesses. This is exactly the point (among others) Piper, MacArthur and others make in their sermons. Third: I did not say that Piper and MacArthur argue that abstinence should be a requirement for Christians. What I said is that they advocate for it as the best choice for most Christians; and much of the reasoning they use (Piper's is the easiest to follow) is the same. But the idea of abstinence is not the primary issue here, is it? At least that's not what I was trying to explore with you. I was much more interested in the idea of "stumbling blocks" and how that impacts (or not) your decisions about drinking. Finally: There was an interesting article in Christianity Today a few years back which may be relevant to you. It was written by an Evangelical woman--not sure she mentioned a particular denomination. She described how she and her husband had moved to a poorer part of a city in the Midwestern US. She described the terrible addictions (alcohol, tobacco, and drugs) that plagued their new neighborhood. She and her husband eventually came to the conclusion that they simply could no longer feel good about "looking people in the eye" when they went to purchase alcohol at their local liquor store. Their conversion (if you will) to total abstinence was complete when they realized their purchases were supporting an industry that had purposely enslaved so many of their new neighbors [not to mention millions of their countrymen.] Her rhetorical question to other Christians [paraphrased]: How is it so many of you seem never to have met an alcoholic?
  3. I used the term "Christian Liberty", because I see it used frequently in Reformed online sources; and I wanted to speak directly to you so that you would better understand what troubles me. I apologize if I gave the impression that it has any sort of LDS context. I had thought (wrongly as it turns out) that the "scare quotes" would indicate that. I agree that it is not an LDS term, and I have never read or heard it used in LDS teaching. With respect to the CFR: Please see John Piper's sermon, "Total Abstinence and Church Membership" where he says this: "For myself and my family the way I have decided to go is total abstinence. I also believe, in general, that this is the best way for all believers in America today to go." Also, please see John MacArthur's Sermon, "Interrogating Alcohol" where he says this: "I will never use my liberty to offend someone else. I’m happy to put my liberty aside. After all, it’s not necessary to drink and it’s not the best to drink, it’s not the highest and the best. And that leads me to the seventh, will it harm my testimony? Can it harm my testimony? And I’ve already answered that question, it can. I want to do all to the glory of God. I don’t want any…anybody to think less of me as a Christian. I’m happy to set aside any freedom for the sake of a clear, clean, Christian testimony." MacArthur's blog post "Beer, Bohemianism and True Christian Liberty" is also worth a read. This article from Focus on the Family concludes with this: "Finally, the advice Paul gives regarding "scandals" and "stumbling-blocks" in I Corinthians 10:23-33, bears special application here. The question should always be not what might or might not be "permissible" for me - a self-centered approach - but how my choice (and especially how I communicate my perspective) might impact other people (Philippians 2:3-4). To put it another way, Christians have a responsibility to regulate all of their behavior in every area of life according to the royal law of love (James 2:8)." And with that, I'll simply close with a heart-felt, "Amen!"
  4. I always expect but seldom see more evidence of human kindness and charity in your responses. What I see instead is someone who seems to relish the logic of his “Christian Liberty” above all—it all seems a bit too conveniently blamed on scripture. I find it interesting that rather than taking the “lowest common denominator” you choose in fact to defend the highest. So I won’t trouble you with citations from John Piper, John MacArthur or any other Reformed theologian who do—in fact—advocate that Christians sacrifice their liberty in order to be sure that one is never a stumbling block to the weak—believing or not. I don’t believe that loving one’s neighbor only extends to those who attend my church or who believe exactly as I do. My reading and study of the scriptures simply won’t allow it. My discernment is that everyone I meet is a potential believer.
  5. In these situations, how do you know who is or isn't a believer? How do you know when a believing addict is "cured" to the point that your drinking will not cause him/her to stumble?
  6. (Bold mine) I appreciate and agree with your approach. So one wonders how (or even if) you allow 1 Corinthians 8 or Romans 14 to inform your values? What about folks in your workplace who have personal weaknesses and/or sensitivities toward alcohol consumption? Is it possible that your drinking creates a stumbling block for them?
  7. I’m watching coverage of President Monson’s funeral. I can’t help but feel gratitude for this kind gesture by our Catholic brothers and sisters.
  8. Forgetting to much, and falling to much!

    I love you too, dear Brother; and pray for your improved health. And this in spite of what Your darned Bulldogs did to my beloved Sooners. 🤓
  9. Did anyone else get a Pro-Islam PM, here at Christmas?

    I got one as well. The message had several references to the Koran, which showed (as I recall) that Muslims hold Jesus and Mary in fairly high regard. I responded with thanks for furthering my understanding of Islam as well as an expression of my personal belief that our Father in Heaven (Allah) works through all religions to accomplish His purposes.
  10. LDS Woman "a Mother to 2,000 People"

    “I hope that my legacy here is that the people that I have touched, the refugees or the Greek people, will always remember that I cared about them. That they were special and important. That they were worthy of that care...I'm going to stand as a witness. I'm going to talk about what has happened here. I'm going to try to make people understand that we are all human beings.”
  11. Wishes and Candles

    BYU combined Choirs Light the World musical message...
  12. My Dad

    I’m sorry for your loss, Jeanne. May the Lord speak peace to you.
  13. Youth trek historical accuracy

    Former Trek chairperson here (about 6 years ago): We had an enjoyable and interesting training session at our site (Deseret Land and Livestock at Wahsatch, UT.) The fellow who did the training used a LOT of humor to illustrate and emphasize the wisdom of not creating false historical connections. We did NOT have anti-Mormon ruffians ride into camp, and we did not have people dressed in white act like people who died along the way. We DID have an afternoon for playing authentic pioneer games (like stick-pulling), and my impression was that the kids really had a good time with that. We DID have a chuck wagon, so that the food was actually edible. And we DID have a women's pull, but it wasn't linked to supposed hardships created by the Mormon Battalion; rather it was linked to actual pioneer women like my great, great Grandmother Sarah Goode Marshall who as a widow with 6 children pushed and pulled her handcart all the way to Zion without any help from a man. Edit to add: If we'd been advised against the women's pull, we would not have done that; but I just wanted to point out that there were in fact real historical pioneer women who had to do it all alone. I also wanted to add that having sufficient medical personnel is a must. We ended up having a couple of kids who decided they didn't need to drink water along the way--and they ended up needing IV's. Also, it can be incredibly dangerous if the weather decides to be very hot. I think it was last year in my home state of Oklahoma that one of the "ma's" on a Trek at the LDS-owned ranch near Pawhuska actually died from the terrible heat.
  14. Spiritual Uplift...

    The playoffs will be in the Rose Bowl (Pasadena) and the Sugar Bowl (New Orleans) this year. The Bulldogs and Sooners will meet in the Rose Bowl, and Clemson and Alabama will square off in the Sugar Bowl. Both sound like great matchups.
  15. Spiritual Uplift...

    Well, since I’m from Soonerland, ...I will at least hope all sides play a great game. :-)