The Rally for Christian Rights in Atlanta; Can We Trust American Muslims Groups; Interviews former Muslim Dr. Mark Christian; and More on Politics and Religion

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Dr. Brown gives an update on the rally for Kelvin Cochran, dismissed as fire chief by Mayor Reed of Atlanta, then raises questions about whether we can trust statements renouncing terror made by major Muslim groups like CAIR, interviews former Muslim Dr. Mark Christian with GlobalFaithInstitute.org and then looks at the larger issues of the intersection of politics and religion. Listen live here 2-4 pm EST, and call into the show at (866) 348 7884 with your questions and comments.

 

Hour 1:

Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: When it comes to believing Islamic leaders, we want to do our best to give them the benefit of the doubt unless we have good reason to be skeptical.

Hour 2:

 

Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: Yes, things are really shaking and going in a negative direction in our country. The good news is people are finally waking up. Do you hear the alarm?

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This week, Dr. Brown is offering the beautifully put together resource, the Messianic Jewish Family Bible! This gorgeous and carefully constructed Bible comes packed with exciting new additions (listed below) and also includes the new translation,  the Tree of Life Messianic Version. Get your copy of this powerful and beautiful translation of the Bible, for the discounted price of $60, postage paid! Order Online HERE!

Other Resources:

Jesus Is Saving Muslims in West Africa (an Interview with Bert Farias)

Dr. Brown Catches Up On The News; and Religious Bigotry in North Carolina

Some Shocking Updates on Radical Islam, Thoughts on Psalm 2, and an Interview with Paul Wilbur

5 Comments
  1. The issue of the Bible’s teaching on homosexuality is relevant to today’s discussion on Kelvin Cochran’s firing over his biblical stance on homosexuality. I beg Dr. Brown’s patience in allowing me to expand an earlier post.

    Did Paul know about loving, committed gay relationships? The gay Harvard historian, Dr. John Boswell in his book, “Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality,” gives us a foundation for the answer to that question.

    http://books.google.com/books/about/Christianity_Social_Tolerance_and_Homose.html?id=v-MR5_AdG68C

    [Page 25] “Plato argued that pairs of homosexual lovers would make the best soldiers…and the Thebans actually formed an army of such pairs in what turned out to an extraordinarily successful experiment…”

    [see also http://www.laits.utexas.edu/ancienthomosexuality/readindex.php?view=26 for a discussion of the Theban “Sacred Band” of adult male lover pairs]

    [Page 28] “Unfortunately, an equally distorting and even more seductive danger for the historian is posed by the tendency to exaggerate the differences between homosexuality in previous societies and modern ones…”

    “One example of this tendency is the common idea that gay relationships in the ancient world differed from their modern counterparts in that they always involved persons of different ages: an older man (the lover) and a young boy (the beloved). Some scholars even propose that such age-differentiated relationships cannot be considered examples of ‘real homosexuality.’ …On the other hand, it does NOT seem likely that, with a few exceptions, the apparent prevalence of erotic relationships between adults and boys in the past corresponded to reality.” [my emphasis] “It was, rather, an idealized cultural convention. It is useful to note here that in modern European and American [Page 29] culture teenaged girls are ubiquitously standards of feminine beauty: advertisements, popular literature, pornography, movies and television, even vulgar humor…assume the sixteen–twenty-year-old female as an archetype of feminine beauty. It would certainly be wrong, however, to infer from this that most men either wish to or do have sexual relations with women in this age group. It is not even clear that this is the age group most attractive to all men…”

    “The same was manifestly the case with erotic relations in the past. Beautiful men were ‘boys’ to the Greeks just as beautiful women are ‘girls’ to modern Europeans and Americans. The actual age of the male involved may have mattered to some Greeks; to others it obviously did not. ”

    [Page 28] Footnote 52. [about pederasty] “The distinction is consistently drawn only in Greek, as ‘erastes’ and ‘eromenos’; it may only correspond to conceptual peculiarities of the Athenians. Whether these terms resulted from some sort of definite role expectation is difficult to assess at this distance. It is apparent that the roles were not predetermined, since there was often uncertainty about which person played which part, even when their respective ages were known…The same person, moreover, might be both lover and beloved of different persons at the same time…It is clear that in many cases it was superior beauty which earned one the position of beloved, not inferior age: while Socrates, known for his homeliness, always appears as the lover of others, Alcibiades, equally famous for his beauty, was a beloved all his life. In any event, one did not have to be young in any accepted sense: Euripides was the lover of Agathon when Euripides was seventy-two and Agathon forty; Parmenides and Zenon were in love when the former was sixty-five and the latter forty; Alcibiades was already full-bearded when Socrates fell in love with him. According to Plutarch…Achilles was a beloved when he was a father.”

    “Plato carefully [Page 30] distinguishes in his dialogues between men who are attracted to boys and those who are attracted to other men, but few ancient writers were so careful. Most used terms which suggested erotic attraction for young men and for older males interchangeably, clearly implying that age was a not a consideration. The term “pederasty” frequently has no more relation to the age of the objects of desire than ‘girl chasing.’ The convention of using terms implying youthfulness to express affection or intimacy survived throughout the Middle Ages. The persistence of Ganymede as a symbol of the gay male as well as Christian symbolic filial relations (e.g., between monks and their abbot or ‘father’) enriched the tradition even further. Alcuin addresses a cleric he loves as ‘beautiful boy’; Sain Aelred refers to Simon, his lover an contemporary, as a ‘boy’ and calls him ‘son’; Marbod, Bishop of Rennes, even refers to himself as a ‘boy’ in a letter to his lover.

    [Page 30, N.58] “Often the beloved in a discussion of ‘pederasty’ will be designated with a word which refers to an adult…and in very many cases where both parties are known to be full grown the words used imply youthfulness on the part of the beloved…IN THE MAJORITY OF INSTANCES HOMOSEXUAL RELATIONS ARE DESCRIBED AS OCCURRING BETWEEN FULLY GROWN PERSONS, AND NO DISPARITY IN AGE IS IMPLIED OR STATED.” [my emphases]

    However, would Paul have known these facts? Paul was born in the city of Tarsus, on the far northeast Mediterranean coast. Tarsus was a hotbed of intellectual activity. Strabo, the Greek historian and geographer (64 BCE to 21 CE) provides a stirring account of Tarsus and its intellectual life.

    13 “The people at Tarsus have devoted themselves so eagerly, not only to philosophy, but also to the whole round of education in general, that they have surpassed Athens, Alexandria, or any other place that can be named where there have been schools and lectures of philosophers. But it is so different from other cities that there the men who are fond of learning are all natives…”

    “Further, the city of Tarsus has all kinds of schools of rhetoric; and in general it not only has a flourishing population but also is most powerful, thus keeping up the reputation of the mother-city.”32

    Strabo then gives a long list of philosophers, poets, and Greek grammarians in Tarsus, finishing with this striking compliment:

    “…But it is Rome that is best able to tell us the number of learned men from this city;35 for it is full of Tarsians and Alexandrians. Such is Tarsus.”

    http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/Strabo/14E*.html

    In 67 BCE, Tarsus became part of the Roman province of Cilicia. “A university was established that became known for its flourishing school of Greek philosophy.” Furthermore, Tarsus was known for its huge library of 200,000 books.

    http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/583734/Tarsus

    One of the most famous Stoic philosophers was Zeno of Tarsus, the leader of the movement in his time. When Paul met those Stoic and Epicurean philosophers in Athens, he was used to them: he knew exactly how to handle them, without compromising the gospel.

    In Acts 21:39 Paul asserts: “…I am a man which am a Jew of Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, a citizen of no mean city [i.e., “a significant city”] and, I beseech thee, suffer me to speak unto the people.” Dr. A. T. Robertson, the great scholar of NT Greek, comments on Paul’s statement about his hometown:

    “I am…in contrast with the wild guess of Lysias…He tells briefly who he is: a Jew…by race, of Tarsus in Cilicia…by country…and proud of it, one of the great cities of the empire with a great university.”

    http://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/robertsons-word-pictures/acts/acts-21-39.html

    Paul was a “learned man” of Tarsus who was educated in Greek culture and history. He could quote, off the cuff, even minor Greek philosophers and poets such as Aratus and Cleanthes (Acts 17:28), Epimenides (Titus 1:12), and Menander (1 Corinthians 15:33). Paul (in First Corinthians 13:12) even quoted Plato’s insight in Phaedrus, “Now we see through a glass darkly…”

    ( http://classics.mit.edu/Plato/phaedrus.html )

    The evidence is clear: Paul must have known about the Greeks and their “committed, loving” adult gay relationships. Yet he, inspired by God’s Holy Spirit, condemned all “gay” relationships. Certainly, the omniscient God knew everything about this subject as well, which is ultimately meaningful to those of us who believe that God inspired the Bible.

    The Bible speaks about homosexuality (and the immorality of it) in both testaments: Genesis 19:1-9, Lev. 18:22, 20:13, Rom. 1:26-28, 1 Cor. 6:9-11, 1 Tim. 1:10, Jude 1:7 all condemn it.

    As our Lord Jesus Christ looked his disciples in the eye and taught them, in John 16:13, “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide YOU into ALL TRUTH: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.” The Bible contains “all truth” (spiritual) about homosexuality–that it is a broken, fallen, sinful, human experience.

  2. Islam is like a lethal virus that scientists discover in the jungle. By itself, it kills, but, if it is contained, there is no danger, it poses no threat. However, when it is weaponized, that is, used by certain politicians, certain governments, as a weapon, for instance, to destabilize a region, to provoke conflict, it is a hazard with immense ramifications.

    The response to the conflict, that is even more dangerous.

  3. Nicholas,

    Good points, but Islam is more like cancer. It causes little noticeable physical damage until it goes ballistic. While it is small and unobtrusive, it seems to be just another part of the body that it will ultimately try to destroy. If I am not mistaken, Mohamed counseled his followers to remain subdued until they had significant numbers to take over. He counseled them to pretend and lie until they could break out. The non-radical/benign elements of Islam are ultimately still sucking the life out of the culture and supporting the radical/malignant element in subtle and not so subtle ways. It is false/demonic religion that is used to steal, kill and destroy in any way that is possible. It does this in the spiritual realm even when it is temporarily at peace in the physical and cultural realm. The benign elements of Islam have been calmed by the chemotherapy and radiation of modernism, but these are not cures…they just slow the metastasization. The only cure is being born again from above via Y’shua Messiah.

    Shalom
    .

  4. Yes, Bo, only Christ can solve the world’s problems, but we are not appealing to God, but to humanist solutions. That is the problem. That is the dangerous response, when we take action ourselves, acting without the grace of God.

  5. I would like to apologize for the imprecise statement that Paul “quoted” Plato in 1 Cor. 13:2. I was rushing to get ready for church and I responded to the exact words of a translation I had just found; I did not take time to compare the underlying Greek texts. When I went back today and did the check, I discovered that Paul’s statement was a paraphrase, not a translation. Paul sometimes paraphrases parts of quotations, as he did in 1 Cor. 14:21 (partially quoting, partially paraphrasing Isaiah 28:11-12: compare the Greek texts of the NT and Septuagint passages). Plato’s statement is also very similar to 2 Cor. 3:18; Paul appears to have seen special significance in it, as it parallels his own revelation.

    Also, I would like to comment on the statement about the use of “Christians” in Acts 11:25-26. When I read this in the Greek text, I see that Paul and Barnabas (v. 25) are said to take certain actions (v.26). In the Greek there are three actions, given in three “aorist infinitives,” which are, unfortunately, not translated as infinitives in any translation I have come across.

    The text reads, literally, “25 and he went forth into Tarsus to seek Saul, and finding, he led unto Antioch. And it came to pass for them also a whole year ‘to be gathered together’ with the church, and ‘to teach’ a considerable crowd, and ‘to call’ firstly, in Antioch, the disciples ‘Christians’.”

    Translated literally, the passage says that Paul and Barnabas were the ones who called the disciples “Christians”. Here is the Greek text below, for anyone who can read it. I’m sorry that the format of this text is not compatible.

    ἐξῆλθεν δὲ εἰς Ταρσὸν ἀναζητῆσαι Σαῦλον, καὶ εὑρὼν ἤγαγεν εἰς
    Ἀντιόχειαν. ἐγένετο δὲ αὐτοῖς καὶ ἐνιαυτὸν ὅλον συναχθῆναι ἐν τῇ ἐκκλησίᾳ καὶ διδάξαι ὄχλον ἱκανόν, χρηματίσαι τε
    πρώτως ἐν
    Ἀντιοχείᾳ τοὺς μαθητὰς Χριστιανούς.

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