Comedy Sojourn – Women in Church, The Shack, My Son for Mayor

sojourn podcast

Peaches comes over to discuss why she hates the Bible. Emmi has a runny nose and it falls to me to take care of the lass. It is gross beyond description. Turns out that the Bible is not a Jedi mind trick. We discuss whether or not we can believe this without destroying our Christian faith. While we talk, Emmi ransacks the room with astonishing quickness and efficiency. Peaches says being nice to people won’t necessarily make them love Jesus. That’s great news because she’s rarely nice to people anyway. I’m not sure about praying for other people’s salvation. Β We talk a little bit about Calvinism, Carl. So…be prepared…
We ask the question, “should we ask questions?” The goal of many Christians is to provide answers and asking questions demonstrates a lack of faith. But that’s not what we think. Of course, we could be wrong. But we probably aren’t. What do you think?
We also discuss the role of women in the church. So if you aren’t angry with us about Calvinism, you can be angry about this. So which things are absolutely essential to Christianity? Emmi probably explains it but she talks like a baby so we can’t understand her. I may upset Grandma Turbo with some stuff I say and that will be a problem because everybody likes her more than me. Peaches says women are like truck engines. She is SO OFFENSIVE I CAN’T BELIEVE IT!
Emmi interrupts our important conversation with peek-a-boo. It’s adorable but terribly distracting. There is a video on the blog.
I’m doing an apologetics conference with Peter Heck on May 12th. You might want to come to it! And do you plan to see ‘The Shack’, Carl? We probably will but might wait until it’s on DVD.
Then, Timothy shows up and tells us his plans to become Mayor of Kokomo. He is very passionate and optimistic. He’s also far too honest to be successful in politics. We go back and forth about smoking in bars. We even mention walrus in jet-packs. The boy is a shoe-in.

Check out this episode!


38 thoughts on “Comedy Sojourn – Women in Church, The Shack, My Son for Mayor

  1. No trouble from this Carl on the Calvinist stuff. I’m not one either. πŸ˜‰ As far as women teaching, I do think Paul is talking about how things should be ordered during assemblies. I think it’s an authority thing, and would point to the qualifications for deacons and elders as other examples of the role men have in the church as being different from women. Just as men and women have different roles in the family. I would point to Priscilla teaching Apollos as an example that clearly women can teach men, particularly outside of assembly. Though I do know people who think that was only because she was teaching Apollos with her husband and would even make the case that women shouldn’t make comments in class even if a man is leading that class. I would disagree with them on that. As far as ignorant men takin that as license to teach when they shouldn’t be, I think that’s what we have elders for. To make sure the people leading class and preaching from the pulpit are doing so with wisdom and humility. It still happens (preaching seems to attract arrogance), but our elders, at least, are very good at checking that kind of behavior.

    I thought it was interesting when you were talking about churches today being afraid of questions. I don’t think a single one of our assemblies go by without our preacher or one of our elders inviting people to ask us questions of why we worship the way we do or to come to us if they find we are doing something contrary to the Bible. In fact we just had a Q&A service where our elders and preacher answered questions people had submitted. We got so many we’re going to schedule another one soon. We’re blessed to have elders who don’t shy away from difficult questions. And they’re good about not mistaking opinion for doctrine. They know we don’t have to agree on everything to be a unified church. We just have to make sure we agree with God.

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    1. Thanks for listening (as always), Whitney!

      I appreciate your perspective on the questions thing. And, as I was listening to the playback this morning, I wasn’t very happy with how I phrased that, either.

      What I said was that church leaders are afraid of questions…but what I meant was, many church leaders are afraid of leaving questions unanswered.

      As long as we have a pretty good idea of what we believe, then it makes sense to want to share it with those who aren’t as clear. But–I’m afraid it unintentionally creates a situation where the clergy does all the thinking, while the “baby Christians” (and, really, all the lay-people) defer to them.

      I think today’s Christians want to go to their pastor, like a Wisdom vending machine, instead of wrestling with theological issues for themselves. What I’d like to see is Pastors and Elders “answering” questions WITH MORE QUESTIONS, to get others thinking.

      Does that make sense?

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      1. Yes, I think I understood. It’s kind of like how we handle the passage of the women’s covering. We had a sermon that kind of laid out all the viewpoints (or the ones we’ve thought of, anyway!) and let people come to their own conclusions on it. There have been other things that we’ve done that on as well. Our church leaders are pretty insistent that every person have their own faith and not be reliant on the faith of the elders. In our Bible classes we’ve tried to cultivate a culture of participation with an emphasis on learning to think and study on our own rather than just getting an information dump from the teacher. We try to emphasize that the teacher is more leading the class than teaching. It helps that we have a good balance across multiple generations. Like a couple quarters ago I was in a class where the age range was from 18 to 101. There were a LOT of great discussions in that class! And the teachers are good about asking questions at the end for us to think about for the next week. As always what you get out will depend on what you put in, but in general our members put a lot into each class.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. John and mrsmcmommy,

    Just caught the podcast while driving a lot today.

    Some thought-provoking stuff, to be sure.

    I am pained, though, at the misunderstanding of what you call “Calvinists”. Though I dare risk the ire of our host… it was kind of a caricature.

    I would be glad to explain what Calvinists really think about issues, if the questions are asked. I am far from the final authority on the matter, but I have studied it extensively.

    Please, let us reason together and have a fun discussion as we have.

    Dave

    Proverbs 27:17 (ESV)

    17 Iron sharpens iron,
    and one man sharpens another.

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      1. @John – looking forward to the Calvinist rant! You might just bring out my inner troll, but Hopefully I can talk myself out of the spam folder that day >_>. ^_^

        Hopefully gonna give the podcast a listen whilst I dig my family out of the snow later today.

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      2. John,

        Me and the wisdom of the church fathers of old are ready to withstand your assault. I PM-ed Augustine, Luther, Calvin, Edwards, Knox, Bunyan, and Spurgeon to join in, but have not received an answer yet.

        πŸ˜‰

        Dave

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      3. John,

        Osteen? You wound me.

        I only PM great men of the faith, not a charlatan who isn’t into talking about sin and actual salvation in his sermons, and does not seem to care about the state of his members’ eternal souls. All you need is you best life now!

        Dave

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  3. As far as the Shack goes, I have not seen the movie ( it is out now, right?) but I did read the book. I read it somewhere between four or five years ago- thought the book was good on the whole.
    First, my grandmother read it and encouraged my dad to read it. Then my dad read it, and encouraged me to read it. Although, he told me “there were some things in there that had me confused or I didn’t quite agree with, but when you read the book, tell me what you think about it.”
    He didn’t tell me what specific parts he disagreed with, but he did ask me if I understood a chapter that he didn’t understand. ( how’s that for indoctrination?!!)
    And that’s how I think people should go about it. If there are in fact heretical material in there, I believe it is a great excercise for discernment.

    I’ve looked up some stuff on what people have thought was “heretical” and I’m thinking ” is that such a big deal?” and some other stuff I thought “I’m pretty sure that is not entirely what the author meant- but I could have looked at his words through my own theological lens.” So really, it has been so long, I don’t remember it being heretical, let alone so heretical that it was “avoid at all costs”.
    If somebody wants to point some out for me, that’d be great.
    However, I can see a point that people want to avoid false teaching, just like they avoid movies that encourage a message that is in steep contrast with the Christian message. For those consistent people, I understand their point.

    However, I do agree that many people that say it was heretical haven’t even read the book.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Listening to this now, I feel like you’re poking at me! haha.Yeah, for sure I know I can be naive in some ways still…only 7 years old in Christ! I believe in the Power behind scripture. It was the word of God spoken to me as a heathen that gripped my heart. It was the word of God that spoke forgiveness and I became new in Christ. The Power through the Word. I don’t know anything, I don’t label my self as calvinist or whatever, I just want to follow Jesus. and I don’t want to be ashamed of believing HIs word has power. Ya know what my favorite thing to do is? go for long runs listening to the Gospel..the story never gets old and I learn new things every time! I love Jesus πŸ™‚ I’m a woman, by the way, so you don’t have to listen to me πŸ˜‰

    I love listening to you guys, you’re not afraid of the nitty gritty and I thoroughly enjoy the stimulating conversations and topics you bring up. I am growing more resolved and firm in my faith, and you guys are doing a lot to help with the process, Thank you! I also have dear old Arkbuddy to thank, since after a conversation with him, I know without a doubt I believe what I believe! God is so good!

    For we are HIs workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared before hand that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10

    Keep doing your good work, John!

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    1. We welcome disagreement, Gene!
      If your experience has taught you there was supernatural power involved in the Scriptures you read, that’s hard to argue against! At least, in your case. Also, Lee Strobel testifies that it was his honest investigation of the Bible which led to his change of heart…

      But, I wonder, what do you make of the hundreds of Atheists who have read (or at least claim to have read) the Bible with no impact?

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      1. I don’t know, Peaches. I just know my dad’s heart hasn’t been softened by the Word alone. He’s a hardened man with serious foibled ideas about God. I was raised to figure things out on my own, sadly, and I had to learn the hard way most of my lessons I’m still learning. Thank you for speaking to me. I think God is moved by our prayers. I have wept and wept and lamented over thinking of Dad’s eternal destiny. I have seen hell. God is working whether we know it or believe it. It’s the Love, we mostly miss. the true love, the first Cor. 13 love. That is what’s changing my dad’s heart. He still doesn’t accept what the Bible says as Truth, but someday, I know God will open his ears. I just hope it’s not too late. Jesus please save my father.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Gene,

      I am sure that when we meet the Lord, He will not be disappointed in our frequent use of Scripture in daily life and blogging.

      Jesus Himself was rather fond of saying “It is written…”. And He certainly wasn’t quoting the Reader’s Digest.

      He used Scripture to beat back Old Snakey himself, and it left him speechless and fleeing, so I am confident that it is useful engaging us humble humans.

      Dave

      Matthew 4:10-11 (ESV) – Then Jesus said to him, β€œBe gone, Satan! For it is written,

      β€œβ€˜You shall worship the Lord your God
      and him only shall you serve.’”
      Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.

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      1. Agreed. πŸ™‚

        And, for the record, I also think it’s interesting the way ATHEISTS are always the first to bring up the Bible in conversation with someone like me, who doesn’t quote it. They simultaneously hate it and demand that you quote it, so they can trot out their rehearsed arguments against it. I recognize there must be power and truth contained within a book, when even the godless are obsessed with it.

        My goal certainly isn’t to discredit or disparage the all-time world’s best seller.

        Simply, we need to recognize that God gave us our minds AS WELL AS the Scripture (AS WELL AS the natural world). Our revelation would be complete without any of those.

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      2. mrsmcmommy,

        No argument from me there.

        I went to Bible college and got a Biblical Studies degree. We certainly didn’t spend our class times memorizing verses.

        We looked into the history and theology, studied those ancient heresies that just keep recycling in modern days under different names, and learned Greek and Hebrew. It was a degree program filled with reasoning and rather light on indoctrination.

        We covered differing views on the issues, as the students served were from all over the map of denominations. It was certainly not a Calvinist school, and I was in the small minority of Reformed guys.

        But, like here, there were never hostile disagreements and division over the issues. Many healthy debates, but it never escalated to the “more heat than light” stage.

        Dave

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      3. Well, we’ll see if we can change that! I’m just ITCHING to use this spear! πŸ™‚

        (Also, my dad spent the morning with the other “Dave” friend I mentioned, so it’s official: there will be a conversation about Calvinism on the next podcast, featuring an actual Calvinist, to do it better justice. I haven’t talked with Dad since he got back. Did you hide the body when you were done, Dad?)

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      4. Lol.
        Sorry about the tech issues. Maybe you really did push “record” when you were talking to Tim last week, and this is a recurring problem? I hope our trusty little podcast device isn’t in the process of biting the dust.

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      5. John,

        Are you sure you didn’t just erase the podcast in the light of Mr. Pendleton’s overwhelming and persuasive reasoning?

        πŸ™‚

        I anticipate with unquenchable eagerness the next podcast. even when we differ, it is good stuff.

        One thing, though… is there a way for you to balance the audio with the music and the intro? The “Welcome to the Podcast” chorus of miniature Branyans and the music in between segments blows my speakers up, as I have to turn it up to hear the conversation clearly.

        Dave

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Amen Sista! hahaha Oh I just love you. Yes, the word definitely has it’s place. It’s a good place. I really don’t know too much about arguing or debating, I just like to talk about God. πŸ™‚ It’s even better when I know the Truth! It’s our only offensive defense, that and our testimony. Plus, I just can’t keep up with you! Sheesh! Lol πŸ™‚

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  5. Do I make any sense? I don’t think I’m coming through, haha. Out of curiosity, what would you call me? I’ve thought about what I would be, but never quite fit into any category of classification qualifiers for being a Believer of Christ. Outcast! yeah! πŸ™‚ He really loves me πŸ™‚ haha

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    1. Not everyone fits comfortably in a category. Traditionally, there are five points to Calvinism.
      A friend of ours recently joked that he is a “three and a half point Calvinist.”

      I recommend listening to more conversations between Christians and deciding for yourself…

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      1. Lol, yeah, looking forward to hearing that lost conversation. This is definitely eye-opening. I’m not that outspoken in my faith, and knowing how many of the same questions are being asked, it’s incredible! and how many different interpretations people have of the same words, I get a little flabbergasted, myself. You guys have got a pretty good muck-rake to sift through the crap. Thanks for sharing your gifts!

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Ah, Gene, I would bet that the majority of Christians wouldn’t know how to describe what they believe in theological terms. I’m currently listening to a Church of God (the denomination- well “non-denominational movement” that I attend) conference that my dad went to at the beginning of this month- talking about Wesleyan theology and reformed theology. I just told my dad that listening to them describe what they believe is like me listening to Ben Folds describe a capella music on The Sing-Off: I know what I just heard- don’t know the sophisticated musical vernacular to describe the music. Like that, I know what I believe, but don’t know the sophisticated theological vernacular to describe my beliefs. If people were to throw out a theological term at me and say “what is your opinion on that?” I would have no idea how to respond- although I know what I believe in layman’s terms.
      Of course, the sad part about fields of public communication is that if you go beyond an 8th grade-level, you lose your audience (and newspapers are written at a fifth grade level). For example, years ago, the church that my dad attended, they wanted my dad to teach (he was a Sunday School teacher at the time- but it may have been a Wednesday night class) out of a book. It was a good, scripture-based theological book. By the third week, they wanted him to stop. So he did ( he had many chapters to go). So I doubt, from a public standpoint, that theological terms will be increased in use from pastors.
      There are many areas of the Christian faith, and theology is a rare focus, at least in the public setting. I think that is why older people always described the denomination they went to, because it specifically classified their theological beliefs. Now, with so many non-denominational churches out there, I think theology needs to become a revisited area of interest.

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      1. Matthew,

        I hear you. I am not one to throw around jargon, unless it is a gathering of people who all use it regularly.

        I, for one, pledge to keep my discussions on things theological at a level that is not “insider baseball”. I have heard people who like to throw in the technical terms when discussing theology when it is unnecessary. My first semester at Bible college, one guy a couple of years ahead of me quizzed me on my theological positions using Bible college words I had never even heard of before. It resulted in three things: 1) I felt embarrassed in the group of people, because I had to publicly admit I had no idea what he was saying, 2) It made me think he was being a pompous donkey, and 3) it made me determined to never do that.

        R.C. Sproul, one of my heroes, once said that if you can’t explain something in words a six year old can understand, then you just don’t understand it enough yourself. (That is a paraphrase… could not find the exact quote).

        I would rather discuss ideas than cause confusion over fancy words.

        Dave

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  6. Indeed, Matthew! It’s like describing a dance (music), you don’t REALLY know unless you experience it. I love to go deep in Scripture. God opens up whole new levels of understanding when we genuinely want it. He is so GOOD!!

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  7. Hey just listened and thanks for the seminar shout out. I am thinking about a picture maybe Darwin with the red circle and the line through it or the Darwin fish being eaten by the Jesus fish so many options. Bring on the heathens. Tim lying rant made me think of wasn’t there a story on a previous podcast about him ,cookies and Dad/Mom not being truthful. I see he has continued to point it out where he sees it. Good stuff enjoyed.

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