How Jefferson Bethke Showed Me I Was A Jerk

About a year ago, I blasted a dude named Jefferson Bethke who made a video called “Why I Hate Religion But Love Jesus,” which currently has over 23 million views and attracted all kinds of criticism and praise — and I was one of the guys who hated on him.

I left a mean comment on YouTube, went wild about it on my blog, and accused him of “thin doctrine” and a “poor choice of words” about the Christian faith.

Only a couple weeks later, I came to my senses and snapped out of it with a semi-apology.

I don’t know Mr. Bethke or anything about his faith and life — but in my arrogant selfishness and a subconscious attempt to piggyback off his success, I called him out on stupid secondary nitpicks that only made me look like an insecure moron.

Plainly speaking, I looked like an ass.

Continue reading “How Jefferson Bethke Showed Me I Was A Jerk”

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Question: Walking On Spiritual Eggshells

Anonymous asked:
Thanks for posting that “You Are Loved” post. I listen to a lot of Reformed Theology (which I like) and theologians are always talking about God’s perfectness, his holy wrath, our total depravity, etc… (all of which I agree with). That I very often forget he loves me. In my spiritual walk I tend to walk on eggshells and not try to do anything that will provoke God’s righteous wrath on me. He feels very distant and unapproachable sometimes. I always have to remind myself “God loves me.”

Thank you for your kind message.  You’re referring to this (or this).

May I stretch you a bit here? If you’re always listening to teaching that’s unbalancing your view of God — and God never wants you to be on eggshells like that — then it’s possible that 1) you’re seeking self-punishment or self-loathing, which says a lot about your mindframe, or 2) you could consider expanding what you hear about God. 

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Getting Back The Grace-Card

You’ve heard this: Give me back your man-card, usually after a statement like Twilight wasn’t that bad or I need a fork for these hot wings or Nothing less than 500 thread count sheets.

In hundreds of conversations with veteran pastors, new seminarians, drug addicts, ex-cons, single moms, high school drop-outs, and lonely outcasts: It’s easy to tell when someone has given away all their grace-cards.

It’s the slightly clenched inflection in their voice.

The head shaking back and forth with too much relish.

The blame, the shiny perfect version of themselves, the mocking of the other person’s voice.

The re-telling of so-called horror stories: And so he was like — And she goes — And can you believe that?

The constant demonizing, generalizing, categorizing, contempt-disguised-as-pity, the seething disgust and bitterness.

Never an insight into another’s point of view, never an empathy from another’s perspective, never even a half-sincere attempt at trying to understand upbringing, culture, wounds, and influences.

Or it’s just as simple as never mentioning the word grace.

I imagine the angels in heaven, right before Jesus was about to save the world by first heading to the earth as a baby in a manger, and all them telling him, “Don’t do this. Not for these people. They’ll ignore you, despise you, betray you, torture you, and kill you. You’ll come out of the grave and they still won’t believe you. Don’t do this, Jesus. Not for them.”

And Jesus telling the angels: “Give me back your grace-cards. Maybe you’ll get them back after you stop some car accidents or draw my face in more toast.”

Where is the grace?

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“Some Preach from Envy and Rivalry”



An article from Nick Bogardus on The Resurgence.

Excerpt:

“Want to know the easiest way to build a platform these days? Set yourself up as the antithesis to a person or position of influence. Be the contrarian or critic who rides the coattails. It’s easier to be known for what you’re against than what you are for.

“Their ability to make a living is based on site traffic and conference invitations, and they build their reputations—and traffic—by walking over others.

“We’re more likely to tear each other down—and that means the people who are around us—than put in the effort to build each other up. Because rage is easier than rationality, and it’s more popular.”

Continue Reading at The Resurgence


Read Related:
— Us Vs. Them: A Church of Religious Superiority
— A Christian Is Not Up To Your Damned Standard
— I Love My Doctrine More Than Jesus: Why No One Cares About Your Theology



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