Thursday, December 29, 2011

This Is My Body, Broken For You

And when he had given thanks, he brake it and said, 
Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: 
this do in remembrance of me.
I Cor. 11: 24
Mighty Creator, the Everlasting did something He had never done, nor would again ever do in human history. Yahweh, Lord of Lords, touched stones and inscribed His thoughts. 
Man writes, but God doesn’t. God speaks. “Let there be light, and there was light.” Yet, for a great and profound mystery God reached down from above the stars and with his fingers carved into two rocks the Covenant between Himself and His son, Israel. 
After communing with the face of God for forty days, Moses embraced those precious stones understanding their eternal significance then walked down the mountain to give the law of the Covenant to His people.
The tablets were God's work, and the writing was God's writing engraved on the tablets. ...It came about, as soon as Moses came near the camp, that he saw the calf and the dancing ; and Moses' anger burned, and he threw the tablets from his hands and shattered them at the foot of the mountain. From Ex. 32: 16-19 
What had Moses done! How could Moses have been so enraged as to fling down and shatter the miracle entrusted into his hands?  
Seventh-day Adventists teach that the significance of the Ten Commandments being written in stone rather than upon vellum was that they should, from generation to generation, stand as a witness to the perfect law of God.
However, what the Adventist theologian does not fully understand is that these tablets were not displayed to verify the accuracy of Moses, subsequent leaders and scroll copyists in teaching God’s law. The stones were never even to be read by the individual Hebrew. These tablets would soon be buried within the protective heart of the ark, placed inside the Holy of Holies and disappear from human eyes forever. A wholly unseen holy relic. 

Moses was instructed by God to record His words in a book that would be spoken to God’s people at their holy assemblies--the Torah would never be copied and given out to the masses like published books are today. 
There is a nuance within SDA teaching that by recording something on stone, Israel could remember what God spoke. The eternalness of rock would prevent the Hebrews from forgetting His commandments. 
This too is a misunderstanding of the sovereign power of God. Engraving rock neither ensures permanence (we know this by the fact that Moses destroyed them) nor safeguards His people from forgetting. God’s word. In no sense is it more secure because it is written. God’s Word stands when He speaks, the words eventually written down and even those never written.
Then what would be the purpose of God, Yahweh, writing the Ten Commandments on stone? 
Notice that Moses was not punished for defacing the irreplaceable Holy Stones touched by the very hands of God (when later he would be bitterly punished for angrily striking the rock that brought forth living water). The reason for this was because Moses had acted according to God’s will by breaking the tablets of law.
The Lawgiver placed within Moses the righteous wrath that took the tablets held them high within the sight of the wickedness and broke the stones. 
This was a foretaste and prophecy of the Savior. 
For that Rock was Christ. One day, Christ would be raised upon a tree, taking upon Himself the grievous sins of the world and the eternal consequences. 
Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. Isaiah 53: 4, 5

Millennia later, just as Moses held up the rock before Israel and split it beneath him, our Savior Jesus Christ sitting with His disciples at the last meal lifted up the bread of life...
And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. I Cor. 11: 24

Jesus became the broken one, the manna from heaven and the rock of our salvation.
Today, we observe this same eternal sacrifice in our worship. Our priest, as the New Covenant Moses,  lifts high the Body of Christ, the eternal Bread of Life who because of love, healed our brokenness by being broken.
As we gaze upon the suffering passion of infinite mystery, of Emanuel, God-with-us placed upon a tree of curse and suffering: 

We behold the Alpha and the Omega
We behold the enraged Dragon of deception thrown from Heaven, 
We behold the Light of Creation dawning upon a dark and desolate world, 
We behold Adam and Eve awakened and roused from their sleep,
We behold the crushing moment when Abram lifts the knife upon his son, 
We behold swirling white Manna, like pure snowflakes falling from Heaven, 
We behold angered Moses throwing down and shattering the Ten, 
We behold the repentant King David rise from his knees with a clean heart, 
We behold Nebuchadrezzar shedding his beastly and confused mind,
We behold Elijah fade as John is revealed in the desert,
We behold the Ave Maria, gratia plena becoming the New Eve,
We behold the Revelation of Jesus Christ,
We behold a new heaven and new earth, a universe washed clean.
We are beholding the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world
Behold Him who is broken for thee!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Why are you an Adventist?” I ask my family and friends who are progressive or liberal SDAs. 
I give them the “progressive” label because of their undying fidelity to the Sabbath even when they reject the legalisms of their doctrines of diet and sabbath keeping. Also because they have no more attachment to Ellen White than Christian pop vocalist Amy Grant. SDA prophecies about the last days? “Whatever”....they will shrug smugly. “Most Adventists don’t believe that other stuff anymore,” they claim defensively.
“Then become Messianic Jew or Seventh-day Baptist or some other mainstream church  you agree with and who offer Sabbath services? Even better, come to Saturday mass with me at my Catholic church?”
They become uneasy at my question. 
“No, I’m not going to change churches. I’m okay being SDA because it really doesn’t matter what sabbatarian church you go to as long as you love Jesus.” And that statement really means: It’s not just the Sabbath doctrine that is important to me. Because if it was just about Sabbath, they would easily slide into a different church that aligns more with what they believe.
Liberal Adventists are comfortable with their unique lifestyle and aren’t going to change churches even if other denominations do hold Sabbath services. It simply comes down, for them, to the SDA people. Most Adventists will stay in the pew no matter how much they disagree with some of their church’s teaching because they like their family and friends. 
Many of the more liberal Adventists don’t want to be pinned down with doctrinal structure. They don’t think doctrines are as important as people. And frankly I think some confuse doctrines with people. Let me back up and explain:
Nice People
In a general sense, Christians today perceive doctrines as sterile statements of belief. Okay, they will admit to a few vital essentials--like the progressive SDA who picks the Sabbath issue and sticks with it. But other than the bare essentials, American Christians embrace that deep, philosophical theory of KISS and wear it as a badge of humble, spiritual sincerity. Or they give up, confused, and assume that truth is unknowable.

Therefore, since the importance of doctrine has been minimized, Christians look to people to fill that theological vacuum. Holiness by means of obedience to God’s truth (expressed in doctrines) has been replaced by righteousness via niceness. You discover a nice Christian leader? Well, he’s got to be right. He couldn’t possibly lead you astray.
So Christians rest comfortably in the bosom of “nice” leaders. However, there is a problem with nice people. Affable, unpretentious, enjoyable preachers who satisfy our inspirational and entertainment needs... could be wrong--dangerously wrong. Nice and right aren’t synonymous. So a sweet, affable shepherd is substituted for one who teaches correct doctrine.
When I point out to an Adventist that the Investigative Judgement isn’t biblical nor been taught by historic Christianity, they will look at me like I just hit their warm and compassionate pastor and they respond “... but Adventists are so kind” as if the two are linked in some way. I am constantly being accused of being critical of Adventists when I refute their sabbatarian doctrine! 
And this is true for many Christians today. Nice has become our litmus test for truth. Nothing else seems to matter. Good-natured, pleasant, well-meaning and likable people somehow equal good people. Nice is the new righteousness. 
The dilemma is that almost ALL people are nice. Bad people don’t know they are bad, they see themselves as humble, kind-hearted understanding and often they ARE! Nobody sees themselves as wearing the black hat and they go about in life acting in a way in which people cannot see their thoroughly evil doctrines that produce a life of sin.
These people didn’t begin with the intent of leading people astray. Their intent was benevolent and sincere. But without true doctrine, we each believe we can create our own doctrine and often that nullifies God’s truths. And the people falling for it are sometimes even more caring and more sincere, more zealous than those who rigidly and even coldly remain within true doctrine. Nice is not rigid like truth. Nice is like a loose gas that expands to fit any space. 
People assume true godliness looks, sounds and feels unassuming, neighborly, hospitable, attentive, modest, tolerant or nonjudgemental. The insidious notion that we can trust nice leaders completely ignores scripture and history. Anything, the worst of human atrocities can be spun by clever propaganda to appear big-hearted, benign. And those doing the manipulating the propaganda sincerely believe what they are doing. They think they are being honorable and heroic.
And even if they air their sins openly, they are so personable, mild and meek and sympathetic, so friendly that everyone thinks they must not be such a bad guy. When in reality--a reality based upon the laws of God--they are living in open defiance of God’s commandments and are  acting wickedly. They may have the appearance of being good, these people feel lamb-like, think polite thoughts, but they have no business shepherding God’s flock. They are false shepherds. 
Reviewing the 2,000 year history of Christianity, I will make a bold statement. All the wolves in sheep clothing, all the arch-heretics of all time were nice. No one follows a  jerk. It is the gracious and friendly charismatic charmer that wins hearts and leads people down the wide path to destruction. Spiritual wolves think they are good shepherds. They are as self-deluded as their followers. They are the blind leading the blind and they are utterly unaware that they are blind. False shepherds, very gently and with what they believe to be sincere love, enthusiastically  drive their flock off a cliff. They wear a white hat. They project a born-again relationship with Christ, they claim sola scriptura and a deep understanding of the Bible. They often have Ph.Ds in some Biblical studies or theology. They talk the talk. They are agreeable, congenial and people follow and look the other way at their idiosyncrasies that may not match with what our Lord, Jesus Christ as well St. Paul demands of a true shepherd.

I can still see many of your wide-eyed, credulous response:

“But they are pleasant,  amiable, soooo nice!” 
And to many that is all that counts. 
Now let us broaden it to a people group and return to our SDA friends. Because Adventists are so deferential, docile, kind, industrious, helpful--it is assumed that this alone makes them safe to reside within its culture. Progressive Adventists cannot see past people to doctrine. They don’t even know why one would need to do such a thing. Doctrine just isn’t a top priority. Nice people trumps true doctrine. 
Did you know that the word “nice” isn’t found in the KJV, ASV, ESV, RSV, NRSV nor the NIV. The only place I could find it in the NAS version is in Jeremiah 12: 6 and it is a warning:
For even your brothers and the household of your father, Even they have dealt treacherously with you, Even they have cried aloud after you. Do not believe them, although they may say nice things to you.

We are people who naturally close our eyes and our hearts to difficult truths. But our Lord was very clear that we must worship in both spirit and truth. And truths found in doctrine spoken in love, may make us seem... not nice.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Former Adventist Survey Summary

Former Adventist Survey Summary 
November 2011 
By Sandy Snelling Whetmore

Summary of Results
Over two hundred former Adventists participated in an anonymous online survey. Respondents were amazingly honest, open, and clear about their opinions and experiences.

Characteristics of the Respondents:

More than two thirds (68%) of those who took the survey had been members of the Seventh-day Adventist church for over twenty years. This would seem to imply that their knowledge of the doctrines, culture, and organizational system was quite extensive.

“The primary reason I left the Adventist church,” according to an overwhelming 86% of the respondents, was, “Doctrinal differences: disagreement over what the church teaches.” A smaller group (5.5%) reported leaving over, “Hurt feelings/anger with another person or group.” The remaining respondents (8%) said they, “Just didn‟t care anymore.”

Female respondents (56%) outnumbered males (44%). Over 80% were between the ages of 30 and 60 years of age. Most (71%) were married. There did not appear to be any clear political affiliation or conviction which included a predominant group, although 41% described themselves as “conservatives.”

Most participants (83%) were former members of the North American Division, while 6% were from the Southern Asia-Pacific Division and 9% from the South Pacific Division. However, several were not sure in which division they reside (see comments to Question #25).

Participants reported that 74% of them became members of the church when they were 13 years old or younger. Only 13% joined the church when they were older than twenty.

Probably related to the age at which they joined the church, 46% reported that, “I was too young to really make an informed decision about church membership.” Another 15% agreed that, “I probably didn‟t really understand all the aspects of becoming a Seventh-day Adventist when I joined the church.” Also, 22% said, “At the time, I thought I understood the doctrines, but it turned out there was a lot more to it that nobody told me about until after I joined the church.”

Because they were only able to choose one of the offered Adventist education options, there was some confusion over how best to respond to this question. However, it is interesting to note that only 12% of those answering the question had never attended an SDA school of any kind.

The educational level of the group of respondents was clearly above average: over 87% had attended college. Participants included 25% with a bachelors degree, 14% with a masters degree, and 6.5% with a doctoral degree.

Most of the respondents left the church as adults: 26% in their twenties, 24% in their thirties, and 24% in their forties.

Only 10% reported that one of their parents had been a member, but was now a former Adventist. Some of the respondents said that their parents were paid employees of the SDA church (15%), a pastor (8%), or a teacher (9%).

Asked about their level of participation in their local church six to twelve months prior to leaving, over half (52%) reported they, “Attended church regularly,” and 40% said they, “Regularly paid tithes or made other financial contributions.” This should be balanced with the report that 20%, “Rarely attended church,” and 11%, “Rarely contributed any financial gifts.”

Participants included a group of 30% who, “Were involved in a leadership position,” in their local church, some (4.3%) who, “Were involved in a leadership position,” in their conference or union, and others (7%) who were church employees when they left the church.

71% of those taking the survey said their decision to leave the Adventist church was influenced by intensive Bible study. Other influencing factors included, “Online information site or blog,” (42%), “A book I read (besides the Bible),” (33%), “A conversation with a friend or family member,” (32%), and “Studying with others,” (26%).

Over half (52.5%) confirmed that their name is still included on the books as a member of the Seventh-day Adventist church. Respondents‟ comments indicated frustration with trying to have their name removed and a reported great reluctance by the church to remove names from membership lists (see comments under question #9).

A few respondents (6%) reported that, “The church voted me out as part of „cleaning up our records,‟ and I was fine with that.” 53% just stopped attending. However, 35% wrote a letter asking for their membership to be removed.

Over 61% said that when they left the church their family and friends, “Were fearful for my salvation.” Other reactions included: “They tried to get me to change my mind,” (45%), “They felt betrayed,” (29%), “They really didn‟t care,” (28%), “They were shocked,” (28%), “They were embarrassed,” (23%) and “They „shunned‟ me,” (24%).

Many of the participants describe their “current religious beliefs” as “active Christian” (68%.) The largest portion of those attend, “A nondenominational Christian church,” (30%.) There did not seem to be any one religious organization which included more than 5% of the respondents. Another 45% reported they currently attend, “No church.” Seven per cent described themselves as atheists and 12% as agnostics.

Former Adventists appear evenly divided on their views regarding church membership. 40% “Do not believe being a member of a local congregation or denomination is necessary.” 27% are currently members of a church. 23% “Do not want to be a member of any church ever again.” 23% “Have not yet found a church where I wish to become a member.”

When reporting on their level of participation in the church they currently attend, only 40% say they, “Attend church regularly.” Another 43% attend church rarely or not at all.

Respondents described their initial emotions related to leaving the Adventist church in many ways: “Relief” (71%), “Joy” (41%), “Sadness” (40%), “Frustration” (25), “Anger” (22%), “Guilt” (20%), and “Fear” (20%).

However, participants described their current emotions related to not being associated with the Adventist church as: “Relief” (70%), “Joy” (63%), “Sadness” (14%), “Frustration” (7%), “Anger” (4%) “Fear” (3%), and “Guilt” (3%).

Comment Sections
The question which generated the most comments, #57, was about jewelry and adornment. 161 respondents expressed an opinion. Most of those comments, though, were statements that the topic was irrelevant. Many people took time to mention that, “The Bible says nothing that leads me to believe that there is anything wrong with wearing jewelry or adornment.”

The other three questions which generated a large number of comments were #59, “Music in church,” (156 comments); #63 “The role and writings of Ellen White,” (157 comments); and #65, “What to consider when choosing a church,” (153 comments).

Comments under the question about, “Cultural inclusiveness in church,” reflected views including apathy, general frustration with a lack of acceptance for those with different political views or sexual orientation, and disgust over separate conferences for racial groups.

Doctrinal Disagreement
The doctrines with which former Adventists disagreed the most were: 
#45 “The gift of prophecy:” 80% strongly disagreed.
#51 “The investigative judgment:” 75% strongly disagreed. 

#47 “The Sabbath:” 68% strongly disagreed.
#40 “The remnant and its mission:” 67% strongly disagreed.
#46 “The law of God:” 61% strongly disagreed.
#27 “Overall fundamental beliefs:” 59% strongly disagreed.
#56 “Concluding
doctrinal statement: fundamental beliefs:” 59% strongly disagreed. 
#35 “The great controversy:” 55% strongly disagreed.

Note: Comments provided by respondents have not been included in this summary. You may view those in a similar document entitled, “Full Report.” 


Saturday, October 1, 2011



Oh the delicious irony, so dear to the heart of a writer and I was right in the middle of it.

In my agnostic youth, I was a fiery columnist for a university journal, affably titled, “It’s All Good.”  It cerebrally embraced multiculturalism as a panacea for the world’s ills.  We cried out that people were victims of damnable doctrine which was, by its nature, competitive. Tolerance seemed especially difficult with imperialistic religious dogma, especially the ideas of sin and salvation. 
Later, as contributor to the “Pen Mightier Than Sword” an international writers-for-peace blog dedicated to helping all religions co-exist, I realized that as long as one group claims some superiority of truth or morals, there can be no compromise and peace is impossible.  With competing ideas one wins and one loses. So we better come up with a good idea that will win against all these religious beliefs or the world will be perpetually at war.  This propelled me into embracing ardent anti-theism. 
Recently, I was hired by the UN to promote the agenda that there is one tolerant idea, “COEXIST” that will bring peace and will peacefully silence all other intolerant ideas. The soul of the movement is respect; respect each other’s gods, each other’s beliefs and moral values.  
With the upcoming COEXIST: Looking Forward Conference being held in Brussels, I was given the task of updating the words for the opening song, sung by an interfaith children’s choir. So, my atheistic pen--wielded for decades--began rewriting “Jesus Loves Me”  Laughable, but easy enough since the COEXIST committee accepted, “Being” as the universal name for God, Allah, Gaia, Buddah, etc... (inching out the anglo-centric “Providence.”) I scribbled:
“Being loves us, this we know,
For ancient writings tells us so.” 
Horrific. I shuttered on so many levels. I was relieved to find the committee decided it should be sung in French and the task was passed on to the Paris branch. My new project was to write the history of the United Nations COEXIST movement from an American perspective to be part of the conference’s resources.
Again, the irony struck me as I recalled the first time I wrote about the movement. I was just a kid, already used to being jetted all over the world as a peace-demonstration reporter.  Held in the desert of Sedona, Arizona, the rally was much larger than expected. COEXIST4Peace, the American branch of the movement, had encouraged all religions to participate. 
Unfortunately, a group of men with JN3:16 tattooed on their forearms got into a debate with some neo-pagans about how one is saved. This particular branch of neo-pagans believed they alone lived after death, evidently no Christians were allowed. When the Christian insisted that all are saved through Jesus alone and began singing the hymn, “Jesus Saves” a fight broke out where several were hospitalized. 
Smugly, I reported that doctrines about who saves can get you killed.
After similar incidences--including one skirmish about the reality of an ever-burning hell, all debate was banned from the rallies. Then distributing tracts that promoted a religion was banned. Because of that the Mormons must have decided they couldn’t co-exist anymore, because I never again saw a visible presence of their church.
Then at another event in Boston, a lesbian bishop was asked to offer a blessing over an ecumenical communion and when the Catholic priests did not participate, the LGBT group was insulted and formally boycotted the next few events.  After the UN strong-armed the U.S. bishops to offered a pathetically weak apology, the group became even more inflamed and began protesting during the COEXIST rallies worldwide. Homophobes began counter-protesting and again, casualties became common.
The following weeks, I began a full frontal assault on the cancerous position that there is something called “sin” that can be universally identified. To authentically co-exist that bloodthirsty belief must be evolved out of us, by compulsion if necessary.  
By far, the worst rally was in Cairo when the speaker went long and conflicted with the evening Moslem prayer. As the speaker paused while the worshippers placed their prayer rugs on the ground and prostrated themselves, two well-meaning American Jewish women, caught in the ecumenical moment, knelt beside the Moslems and placed their hands on the men’s back to pray with them. They didn’t know that their behavior not only invalidated the Moslem’s prayers, but the fact that their female bodies were not fully covered was an insult to Allah. When this was reported on Al-Jezeera, the Middle East cascaded into bedlam, synagogues were torched, fighting broke out in the streets and dozens of people were killed.
Eventually, after a year to calm down and regroup, the UN prepared for a new wave of the COEXIST campaign. This time, with a more aggressive platform for peace. 
A small think-tank was brought in and their COEXIST stealth plan was approved.  We watched it unfold all during the early part of this century without even realizing it.
Their first step advanced the idea of a voluntary PRBS--Personalized Religious Beliefs System. This international campaign promoted the idea that to COEXIST all religion should be a private matter between you and your god (now, Being). 
The PRBS committee retained some celebrities to star in a reality show about how to create your own “designer religion” based upon your private covenant with your Being.  American forefathers’ writings were misquoted or even fabricated to seem as if they encourage a patriotic, individualized spirituality. PRBS was suggested as the perfect solution to preserved the sacred separation of church and state. 
As an incentive, the PRBS would allow one to voluntarily register one’s personal moral code with the government to be kept in an international data file so that the person could gain a tax-exempt status as his or her own religion. (Of course that status was revoked later.) The fine print stated that you could only hold one religion at a time and all non-PRBS religious affiliations must be relinquished.
The brilliant second step was this: during a presidential campaign, a “Fair Speech” bill was passed that required political advertising to give equal time to the opposition. A religious clause was added at the last minute that required the same from religious advertising. That discouraged fundamentalist billboard ads when they realized they would have to pay for another billboard nearby with the opposite view.  
Simultaneously, a “Truth in Advertising” law was passed that demanded fact-checking at every presidential speech, commercial and financial disclosure. Again a clause slipped in also demanded this of religious organizations. Since churches had no way to prove their doctrinal positions, they could no longer publicly advertise in any way. 
But to show good faith to all the religious Americans who had been growing unnerved with what they perceived as these new anti-religion laws,  The Golden Rule was quickly sent through congress and signed by the president, as seen in internet photos, with a back drop of grinning clergy. 
Then celebrities went public alongside well-known religious leaders to promote The Golden Rule as a brilliant resolution to achieve peace through a respectful citizenship. It was a kumbaya moment as clerics and movie stars linked arm-in-arm to spell out the word COEXIST. 
The details later revealed that The Golden Rule meant a ban of religious hate-speech including proselytization--touted as terribly discourteous and a public annoyance. It outlawed divisive speech about an actual heaven or hell; as well as public prayers as discriminatory indoctrination. Oral and written speech could not denigrating anyone’s sincerely held values; the most legally protected being those registered at the PRBS. 
In a Green Initiative a proviso was slipped in that outlawed new permits to build churches, renovate or add additions to existing church structures.
COEXIST’s next step was to foment (in reality, employ) zealots to vandalize opposing churches. When the crimes were against major religions, it was reported as understandable actions from frustrated and victimized minority believers. When violence was against the minority religions, it was reported as expected considering the long history of inexcusable, abusive domination of religion itself.

International commercials aired deriding public religion. Some will recall the famous black and white mock Victorian-era commercial where friends sharing tea in a parlor blushed over religious comments as if they were shameful, sexually-explicit jokes. 
In recent memory, COEXIST4Peace sponsored The Anti-Simony Act. Nicknamed “Religion Must be Free,” by a large group of people claiming to have very conservative and generous PRBS’s. The act made it illegal for anyone to profit from religion in any way. No earning a living from book sales, religious publications or materials. 
Soon after that all citizens were required to have a PRBS licensed by the state. 
The government anticipated a backlash to these laws and prepared for religion to go underground.  A new branch of the feds was discreetly created to root out subversive charismatic leaders who might brainwash a gullible and uneducated public. 

The feds arrested some young men with illegal religious downloads on their computers. Clearly bigoted passages from the Bible inferred that marriage is a monogamous relationship between one man and one woman subverting the COEXIST Marriage Act which legalizes all relationships as long as one entity (of any species) is judged able to maintain a stable commitment for at least one month.
Coexist international issued resolutions that encouraged countries to enact laws denouncing circumcision as child abuse and banning clothing such as head scarves, veils, Hassidic curls and skull caps. Nothing  could be publicly displayed to identify one’s religious, so in defiance some young Jewish men were jailed when they sewed the Star of David on their jackets.
For almost a decade COEXIST4Peace held back from any more legislation to give society time to adjust to this new privatized religion. 
We encountered pockets of religious prejudice as local Taiwanese illegally banned together and kidnapped child prostitutes in order to “rescue” them. Reporters suggested these religious outlaws believed that paying for sex with a child was immoral. This moral stance had not been stated in their PRBS, and even if it had, no moral beliefs can go beyond the person. 

Their unregistered belief clashed with attitudes that have historically been lax towards the practice. Since COEXIST legally protects all beliefs equally, the Taiwanese outlaws were eventually apprehended and jailed. 
No matter how much effort went into educating the populations about peaceful co-existence of religious views, the UN was shocked when a international poll revealed that 87% of people still considered religious views other than their own as false or even evil; 34% conceded that they secretly belonged to a religious-oriented organization that proselytized. 
Almost all of the group polled acknowledged that history books had influenced their decision to believe a doctrine other than the ones they originally registered in their PRBS. Some admitted they believed religious organizations were busy preparing for a public resurgence.  
Because COEXIST was run primarily by educated atheists and anti-theists whose philosophy is based in objective, scientific realities, we were not prepared to encounter the ignorance ingrained into the vast human population. Cultivated beneath the idea of right and wrong, good and bad, heaven and hell, morals and “sin” religion had programmed this deep bigotry into brain synapses in such a way that it was virtually impossible to reverse the thinking patterns. 
History supports this idea when we look at the Middle East. The religious wars that have plagued that region for a millennia can be blamed on an unfiltered ingestion of their sacred scriptures.  This generational bigotry must be defused before and during the formative years. So the implementation of an international child-rescue effort was initiated. 
Almost immediately, a resolution was brought before the UN international panel of religious scholars, to stop the false and distorting historical referencing in children’s education about religion. 

UN Bill H6843 “Getting History Right” passed unanimously. It was introduced by the COEXIST chairman reading a quote from Napoleon, “History is a set of lies agreed upon” and urged the international community to begin the process of reconstructing an authentic history, rather than the lies we have accepted through the years.
All sacred writings must have clearly on the cover a warning that nothing contained therein is historically verifiable and it is a fictitious work of hate speech written to promote intolerance and invoke hostility against the Golden Rule. 
All upcoming educational books were to erase references to religion. 
At the UN announcement, there was a standing ovation when Mein Kampf and Luther’s The Jews and Their Lies was placed on the “Stupid People Read This Book” list. 
There was tentative scattered applause when Foxe’s Books of Martyrs, as well as books about the Inquisition, and the Jewish holocaust were included in the list. These, again, promoted a false history that incites religious bigotry. 
The panel assured everyone that the legality of the list of banned books was based not upon censorship, which they were absolutely, strongly against, but because readers assumed the works were part of some legitimate history. Once the new history books had been written and taught, at some future date, these books would again be released under the heading of fiction.
The only legislation that met a great deal of resistance was the “Children’s Right to Free Thought” act that required all parents to obtain a license to teach their children religion. Parents had to undergo rigorous training and supervision so that children would have the same access to all perspectives. No child would be allowed to be baptized or claim a religious preference till voting age, and at that time they would undergo an anti-indoctrination course before being allowed to legally register their Personalized Religious Belief System.   
For a time, personalized religious beliefs were registered by the state under the name of the person, for example,  registered: Jane Lois Doe PRBS. Descriptive names (such as Jehovah believer, Aryan, Zen) were deemed too divisive. Parents then began to name their boys Calvin, Mohammed, Buddah, Christian, Moses; girls were named Grace and Faith. Even the attempt at being enigmatic naming offspring “Tulip” or Bjornagain” failed and the UN issued a list of acceptable names for children. To prevent a person feeling his private, personalized religious rights ha been violated, a clause was added that allowed a monthly rental for non-approved names, the fee going into  an anti-discrimination fund. 
From then on Personalized Religious Belief Systems were issued by random lottery number--as it was now illegal to name your religion.  
Whew, a few concentrated notes about the last fifty years of the movement--at least what I can remember at the moment, jotted down in a hurry. And now, I am caught up to today.
Pondering my reply, if asked how I would take COEXIST forward (which certainly will never happen). Here are my initial thoughts anyway:
Universal tolerance will be an eternal, yet necessary human-rights struggle.  Peace can be maintained through the equal protection of all multicultural beliefs. 
The overwhelming success of the Personalized Religious Belief System has proven a good solution to keep out of the public sector an imperialistic and dogmatic morality.
Threatening expressions such as “evil” and “sin” have no place in a civilized world. Combative faith that claims salvation exclusively through one god or truth must be vigilantly contained until eradicated. 
COEXIST is convinced that our sacred Being-given rights are best expressed by not expressing them. Indeed my only suggestion for another further step would be to convince people that religion is, in fact, no more than personal thought and that any real god would be private, unspoken thought itself. For eternal peace, “Being” must never leave the confines of the individual. This is the only way that I can see COEXIST remaining successful in the future.
Note: There is a huge difference between the idea of coexisting and unity. The coexist movement divides us into little units of fearful silent neutrality, which supports the tyranny of Relativism and all gods equally. Coexisting uses the veil of respect and tolerance to intimidate and silence its opponents. It's inevitable that the coexist movement become dictatorial. 

Unity brings us together under ONE truth and one God. 

You must choose which you will submit to, for we will have to submit to one. Anarchy, autonomy and freedom is promised in one--but after entering that deceptive facade, it enslaves. Obedience is required of the other--but it brings joyful citizenship in the Kingdom of Heaven. One brings death, the other brings life. It isn't about you and your rights. The Devil doesn't care. And he sets out the bait of liberty and freedom to catch you. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


A         RC  H     Y             RULES!!


And what I mean by that is that I am a devoted Roman Catholic who promised faithful submission to God’s appointed leaders the pope and Catholic tradition and their authoritative interpretation of the infallible written Word of God.

Hey, this is America and I have a right to believe anything I want and call myself anything I want. Being a Total Anarchist words have no other meaning than what I personally recognize. And being a Total Anarchist, words should never have a consistent meaning because that would be too structured, so tomorrow I’ll probably define Total Anarchist as a Fundamentalist Baptist who is faithful to the pope.

Being a Total Anarchist, I don’t care if this makes any sense to anyone else but me. Indeed that is a fundamental principle of anarchy. Chaos. Duh mooooor kayyyoss zee butter. Shoot, that was way too clear, let me try again--”me no love chaos, you Jane.”

Huh? you react? Yep, then I’ve done my duty.

Okay, here’s my point:

In today’s culture we all consider it our right to self-label no matter how far from the traditional meaning a label is. We create our own personalized dictionary and we don’t care whether it remotely resembles how society takes it.

“I am a Calvinist,” he casually tosses out. But really that person is meaning that he was baptized a three point, neo-Dutch Calvinist, but he neither attends church and knows more about Calvin Klein underwear than Calvin’s doctrine.

“I’m a Seventh-day Adventist” another person claims and then the hearer assumes that the speaker’s beliefs resemble something of the 28 Fundamentals and then puts a check mark in their brain such as, “do not ask this person to join me in a shrimp cocktail at the fashion show next Saturday.”

Yet, actually it is a Progressive Adventists who would love to join the hearer in a shrimp cocktail next Saturday at the fashion show.

Very confusing.

Words have lost their meaning. Faith, salvation, grace, born-again, law--all these terms have radically different meanings to different religious traditions. Communication is hard enough without creating an anarchy within our religious terms. And yet that is exactly what has happened.

Being a Catholic means that you submit your opinions, your interpretations and your rights to God’s appointed authorities in Rome. So why are so many Catholics out there claiming you can be pro-choice, pro-same-sex marriage when the church has always been clear on both points for its 2,000 year history? Being pro-life and pro life-long monogamous marriage between one man and one woman is a dogma that can never change no matter who is sitting on the pope’s seat. People who claim they are Catholic or SDA or any other religion but don’t agree with the basic tenets are creating their own mental church and labeling it anything they want.

It would be much simpler if we would all just call ourselves what we really are. If you are not in agreement with the 28 fundamental beliefs of the SDA church--say, perhaps you don’t believe Ellen White was a prophetess, why not just call yourself a sabbatarian or a levitical law sabbatarian. Why label yourself as SDA and confuse everyone?

You have a right to label yourself anything, but why not label yourself where others can know what you believe. Otherwise you’re technically an anarchist.