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Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Post-Christian USA

It shouldn't be a surprise that most US citizens lack a Biblical worldview. Relatively few of them, including many self-identified Christians and self-identified Jews, have any idea what the Bible actually says.

A new study by longtime evangelical Christian researcher George Barna finds that 94% of Americans do not hold a biblical worldview.

The study found that the most common worldview among Americans (88%) might best be termed syncretism, said Barna, describing it as a "disparate, irreconcilable collection of beliefs and behaviors that define people's lives."

Barna's American Worldview Inventory was conducted by the Cultural Research Center at Arizona Christian University, which Barna directs.

The 2021 edition is the first of its kind to measure seven prominent worldviews: biblical theism, secular humanism, postmodernism, moralistic therapeutic deism, nihilism, Eastern Mysticism and Marxism, along with its offshoot, critical race theory.

But Barna found that no single worldview was embraced by a significant percentage of Americans.

"Syncretism is a cut-and-paste approach to making sense of life," he explained. "Rather than developing an internally consistent and philosophically coherent perspective, Americans embrace points of view or actions that feel comfortable or most convenient. Those beliefs and behaviors are often inconsistent, or even contradictory, but few Americans seemed troubled by that."

Syncretism is the only philosophy that is accessible to those whose minds are limited to rhetoric. This is why it's so completely useless to attempt to communicate with them using dialectic. One might as reasonably resort to Japanese or Pig Latin. 

And attempting to appeal to a syncretist's sense of right and wrong is pointless. They don't have any such sense.

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144 Comments:

Blogger Harris April 21, 2021 2:44 PM  

A whole lot of people don't let the Bible get in the way of what they believe.

Blogger dienw April 21, 2021 2:51 PM  

Ah, yes, TULIP and Westminster Confession.

Blogger Brad April 21, 2021 2:52 PM  

"Syncretism is the only philosophy that is accessible to those whose minds are limited to rhetoric. This is why it's so completely useless to attempt to communicate with them using dialectic. One might as reasonably resort to Japanese or Pig Latin."

I have had this exact experience recently when talking about the Chauvin trial to an atheist Progressive. I was not even saying Chauvin was "not guilty" but just discussing some of the points that were not being reported in the MSM. I was called an apologist for a murderer. SMH

Blogger Ahuehuete April 21, 2021 2:55 PM  

I cringe every time I hear some dingbat refer to "kharma"

Blogger Iceeater April 21, 2021 3:02 PM  

Son has PHD in philosphy - says 80% of people can not reason. Of the remaining 20 % than can, 80 % of them will not change their mind no matter how well a reason they are given.


Blogger teemac April 21, 2021 3:10 PM  

syncretism--kinda like everything happens for a reason, however shallow the conclusion.

Blogger Jason April 21, 2021 3:15 PM  

Pope St. Pius X wrote on this in his encyclical titled Pascendi over a 100 years ago. Quite excellent and prophetic.

Blogger Storm Rhode April 21, 2021 3:15 PM  

Lack of a common understanding of the Bible is one of the first things I noticed that caused me concern about society. Instead of cultural cues from the bible people were/are relating to pop culture. It was back in the 90s when I noticed it.

Blogger Stilicho April 21, 2021 3:23 PM  

Moralistic therapeutic deism (39%): Spiritual skeptics, LGBTQ adults, those not registered to vote, political liberals and individuals who attend a predominantly black or Catholic church are the most common adherents of this worldview.

If it feels good, believe it. There is very little daylight between this and "do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law" .

Blogger islanti April 21, 2021 3:27 PM  

Political Correctness is the overwhelming ideology of the West. It is what modern people have instead of religion

Blogger Azimus April 21, 2021 3:27 PM  

I've been pondering the rhetorical vs dialectic thinking concept lately, so this is timely. There are some people who are strictly dialectic minded, but that number is small, and probably has a perfect overlap with high IQ. And there are some who are strictly rhetorically minded, and that number is many and probably overlaps with low IQ. But what about the mid-range, the 100-130 IQ group that makes up almost half the population? They have the ability to think, to grasp logical concepts. What do they do? Is it a sliding scale of susceptibility to rhetoric, which diminishes as IQ increases? Is it a function of training and knowledge? Personal character/choice?

For example, say whatever else you want to about him, Aaron Rodgers is an intelligent man. On the football field he is driven by logic, hypothesis-experiment-conclusion-type thinking. But off the football field, on the surface he's a moral coward who has all but renounced hos Christian faith by saying things like "I'm not into exclusionary dogmas" or things like that. So off the football field its all zero-intelligence, zero-logic feel-goodism. Or is it? Is he just posturing to avoid losing lucrative sponsorships?

Is rhetoric vs dialectic really a binary? 100% of the time for 100% of people, or is it a function of other factors including education and experience? I would tend to think the latter - which means people can be reformed, fixed if you will - at least some can anyway.

Blogger ThatWouldBeTelling April 21, 2021 3:28 PM  

They have a "sense of right and wrong" as you well know from those who've attacked you for being a Christian etc. It's not even Blue and Orange Morality per TV Tropes, but a crazy irrational one, and sometimes definitely demonic. Like your TOR bête noire who assaulted John C. Wright's wife, it was guessed at the time more than anything else because she too is Christian.

Some of these people can be reached with the right rhetoric, although one wonders how reliable they can be as allies. Some are probably too far gone; we certainly have strict limits to any duty to try to bring them to a righteous path.

Blogger pixelroper April 21, 2021 3:35 PM  

the result of unchecked post-modernism... no surprise there

Blogger heidi April 21, 2021 3:38 PM  

This is an imperative truth when attempting to dialogue with even those who claim to be Christians. They have almost no biblical foundation or understanding and instead misquote adages by Benjamin Franklin or sound bites from televangelists and faith healers as their deep and abiding truths.

I have had the pleasure of learning that we use the same words but we do NOT speak the same language. Engage at your own risk but know that if you have a 1923 3rd grade level understanding of the bible you might as well be Spurgeon to everyone else out there.

Blogger Tim in DC April 21, 2021 3:46 PM  

“We have reached a critical mass of stupidity”

Blogger Tim in DC April 21, 2021 3:47 PM  

“We have reached a critical mass of stupidity”

I quote myself from the 2008 election of Obama

Blogger Tim in DC April 21, 2021 3:47 PM  

“We have reached a critical mass of stupidity”

I quote myself from the 2008 election of Obama

Blogger Tim in DC April 21, 2021 3:47 PM  

“We have reached a critical mass of stupidity”

I quote myself from the 2008 election of Obama

Blogger CoffeeGroundsBear April 21, 2021 3:53 PM  

“Syn-Cretin-tism”

Blogger Twisted Root April 21, 2021 3:59 PM  

Modern Western philosophical outlook:-
A moveable feast of convenient hypocrisies so arranged as not to damage the self-image of the holder as a good person.

Blogger Jeff aka Orville April 21, 2021 4:04 PM  

Years ago, I went on a mission trip with my church to Central America. People would mob you for the gospel. That hunger cut across all socio-economic ranges in that country.

But in this country today, the response to the gospel is as if you were trying to hand to them a fresh dog turd. They recoil more often than respond with at least a little interest.

My son has lately taken to initiating religious conversations with people as a means towards steering them to Christ. He too, is finding grab bag of miscellaneous incoherent beliefs.

Blogger Geoffroi de Bohemonde April 21, 2021 4:07 PM  

WRT Catholicism you do not know what you are talking about. It is the only Christian faith that demands one arrive at belief through reason. Catholic religious education emphasizes philosophical inquiry most of all.

Blogger Rattlesnake_Kid April 21, 2021 4:10 PM  

pixelroper wrote:the result of unchecked post-modernism... no surprise there

Not everything is the fault of the usual suspects. This is purely the result of a nation walking away from God. That their choice was supported and hastened by said suspects doesn't change their guilt.

Blogger Conan the Cimmerian April 21, 2021 4:10 PM  

@4 "I cringe every time I hear some dingbat refer to "kharma""

Let them know that they will reap what they sow. The Lord will not be mocked

Blogger Jack Amok April 21, 2021 4:19 PM  

Moralistic therapeutic deism

AKA Churchianity.



Blogger Unknown April 21, 2021 4:19 PM  

Syncretism has been the dominant religious view of every society except historical Christendom and the Muslim world.

Ridding itself of syncretism was one of the great achievements of Christendom. This is one reason the scientific method could only have been developed in the Christian West.

The whole concept of "freedom of religion" was nothing remotely new, it just brought us back to syncretism.

Blogger Autarky Bear April 21, 2021 4:22 PM  

I’ll have to look that up

Blogger Autarky Bear April 21, 2021 4:27 PM  

This is exactly the issue I have when speaking to Vatican 2/ Novus Oreo Catholics. They embrace moral degeneracy and justify it by 1 council (pastoral) when thousands of years of tradition and several previous councils would condemn them otherwise.

Blogger Covmudgeon April 21, 2021 4:33 PM  

Utray Orystay

Blogger Unknown April 21, 2021 4:37 PM  

Azimus wrote:I've been pondering the rhetorical vs dialectic thinking concept lately, so this is timely. There are some people who are strictly dialectic minded, but that number is small, and probably has a perfect overlap with high IQ. And there are some who are strictly rhetorically minded, and that number is many and probably overlaps with low IQ. But what about the mid-range, the 100-130 IQ group that makes up almost half the population? They have the ability to think, to grasp logical concepts. What do they do? Is it a sliding scale of susceptibility to rhetoric, which diminishes as IQ increases? Is it a function of training and knowledge? Personal character/choice?

I think dealing *exclusively* in dialectic is not a sign of high IQ, but a sign of autism. If someone is both smart and wise, they certainly will not lack the ability to deal in rhetoric, but rather be fluent in both. Many smart people are very rhetorically minded, such as Donald Trump.

Blogger Unknown April 21, 2021 4:45 PM  

@Azimus

Rhetoric and Dialectic are orthogonal to each other, mostly. Dialectic is the art of conveying information and organizing arguments, while Rhetoric is the art of emotional appeal. Rhetorical speakers will naturally tune out Dialectic's formal proof structure as "nonsense" or "technobabble".

For instance, take Giuliani's reported investigation of election fraud. He brought in his experts to demonstrate why the 2020 election fraud happened, and couldn't understand, so he had them summarize at a higher and simpler level. To his credit, this is how most judges also work. Most judges want to be told the narrative and fill in the facts for themselves, rather than learning facts, then building the narrative from that.

Pure Dialectic speakers typically assume Rhetoric speakers are lying because of the reliance on emotional trigger points.

Blogger The Observer April 21, 2021 4:50 PM  

Syncretism is the only philosophy that is accessible to those whose minds are limited to rhetoric. This is why it's so completely useless to attempt to communicate with them using dialectic. One might as reasonably resort to Japanese or Pig Latin.

And attempting to appeal to a syncretist's sense of right and wrong is pointless. They don't have any such sense.


This is the state of most people, and that will never change. Attempting to make a new, better man has been tried and failed repeatedly. The foot soldiers of the prometheans will mouth that while the impossibility is a fact, the attempt is still worth something, but examining the fruits of said attempts prove uniformly rotten, as opposed to the impossibility of being as perfect as Christ, where efforts to approach it bear good fruit.

Hence, the obvious answer is Christian society, where making following the Good, Beautiful and True may not be wholly without peril, but comfortable and convenient for most people.

Blogger glueballs April 21, 2021 4:56 PM  

Hear Me Out, Ima Post-Christian …

... Slater. Why I ever worshipped that guy, if I did, I shall never know. Today it’s worshipping looted sneakers for me and mine. A-Oooook-A! GIB ME DA GIBS BOTTALINE.

Blogger Harambe April 21, 2021 5:15 PM  

I won't pretend to be a Bible scholar but I get this urge to strangle anyone who brings up karma unironically. Or those people who make Jesus out to be like the dad from Cocomelon who just wants us to be happy.

Blogger wahr01 April 21, 2021 5:19 PM  

Syncretists have a very firm moral code of narcissism.

In about 2009 there were a series of articles discussing stratospheric rates of narcissistic personality disorder among those under 30. I don't recall the exact figures, as they varied from article to article, but it was the vast majority of women and roughly half of men.

Looking back on it this was journos of the period looking back over their shoulders at their future cancellers and saying "I say! Those guys look pretty unsavory".

Blogger Merely a traveller April 21, 2021 5:34 PM  

Yes, I was just making the same point to a friend, it's like people believe what they see on TV and movies is reality and the truth and there is no convincing them its entertainment and a creative product imbued with the creators biases and interpretation. No point in pointing out inconsistencies.

Blogger Daniel April 21, 2021 5:35 PM  

And if not...

Blogger Ron Winkleheimer April 21, 2021 5:36 PM  

I have had the pleasure of learning that we use the same words but we do NOT speak the same language. Engage at your own risk but know that if you have a 1923 3rd grade level understanding of the bible you might as well be Spurgeon to everyone else out there.

That has been my experience. I'm no great Biblical scholar, but I have read it, some parts multiple times, which is way more than most people, including Christians, do.

Blogger Yukichi Sensei April 21, 2021 5:48 PM  

Holding any exclusive view is anathema to the modern. Syncretic with leanings describes most my students.

Blogger Philipski April 21, 2021 5:51 PM  

I myself come from a highly agnostic-into-atheistic family, but after about age 19, the shock of learning that - gasp! - so much of what my school teachers had taught me was false (this including matters that are illegal to query in most of Europe). But, it is very hard if you didn’t grow up with religion much of an issue to give it primacy in very many daily thoughts. I’m particularly disgusted by the fact that no Catholic church (the one where I have it in the fam’s background) in the area I live in has done anything to stand up to the ridiculous Boomer Virus Lie... but then, who expected as much?

Blogger daddynichol April 21, 2021 5:53 PM  

Syncretics have a Bible buried under a stack of "faith based" self-help books.

Blogger Merely a traveller April 21, 2021 5:55 PM  

I'd say 99% of people no matter what religion don't let the canons or religious texts get a way of anything. Even if they identify as religious they will still rationalize any thought or action that is contrary to the dictates of their religion, ideology or worldview. People just want to be considered good regardless of their intentions or actions, they want immortality so everyone up to their level of morality will go to heaven. There is no hell, except for Hitler and a few others, it's more an exception. And finally live and let live, I'm ok, your ok, just don't have strong opinions.

Blogger Swamp Fox April 21, 2021 6:01 PM  

That definitely fits with my experience. Even if some read the Bible or attend church regularly they pick and choose scripture on a subjective basis based on their idea of how Christianity or the world should be. Churchians.

Blogger Oswald April 21, 2021 6:13 PM  

I'm sure the boomers are responsible.

Blogger Valar Addemmis April 21, 2021 6:14 PM  

Azimus wrote:They have the ability to think, to grasp logical concepts.

This is true. But then you're jumping right to believing that being able to grasp logical concepts truly drives their beliefs and behavior, which is a pretty big leap. It's just as possible that they simply use thinking and logical concepts to justify the beliefs that just feel right. This would comport fairly well with neuroscience research indicating that most decisions appear to be made before the person thinks they make them.

Blogger Warunicorn April 21, 2021 6:24 PM  

I would say my faith in God is as strong as ever. My faith in society, however, took a nosedive these past few years. It was already in a bad place but the last year alone did it in. There's just so much craziness that it's a mass psychosis.

Anyone that does not personally know me but is willing to treat me and others as automatic lepers just because we don't want to wear a mask can't be trusted when it comes down to brass tacks.

Blogger Chill Penguin April 21, 2021 6:43 PM  

this guy quotes himself constantly and wrote two layers of articles about data that I can't find on his website. I'm interested in comparing
> Secular humanism (16%): Spiritual skeptics, residents of the West, people 75 or older and political liberals dominate those who support this life perspective.

with
> Our nation is steadily moving towards the elimination of the biblical worldview as the cornerstone of our society

I agree that secular humanism is for old people, however, that implies that the biblical worldview was already eliminated as the cornerstone of our society 100 years ago before the people making the tv and movies used to indoctrinate these pre-boomers were developing their worldview.
Anyway, I don't know what's going on in this guy's data, but it sounds really useful.
@12, exploring blue and orange morality is the difference between the secular humanism of Star Trek and the postmodernism of The Next Generation

Blogger The Observer April 21, 2021 6:43 PM  

I think dealing *exclusively* in dialectic is not a sign of high IQ, but a sign of autism. If someone is both smart and wise, they certainly will not lack the ability to deal in rhetoric, but rather be fluent in both. Many smart people are very rhetorically minded, such as Donald Trump.

One of the king's tasks is to translate the autistic ramblings of the wizard into policy the rhetorical masses can follow.

Blogger Br'er Shaygetz April 21, 2021 6:48 PM  

This of all things saddens me the most. Few things I love more than teach the Bible as personal accounts and not just stories. Folks just want the "Your best life according isaiah" and not a lot of intectual horsepower is needed or wanted.

There comes a time to defer to the barbarian...

Blogger Newscaper312 April 21, 2021 7:06 PM  

@Heidi
Re 1923 3rd grade level.
I have my deceased father's 6th grade literature book he used about 1941, published a few years earlier.
It was easily high school level back in the early 80s, when I was in HS.
I can only imagine it equivalent to college level now, and not the English 101 'this is a pragraph' retard class.

Blogger Cappuccinobear April 21, 2021 7:07 PM  

I'm sure they at least played an oversized role.

Blogger Avalanche April 21, 2021 7:20 PM  

@1 "A whole lot of people don't let the Bible get in the way of what they believe."

Nor reality.

Blogger LoneWolf April 21, 2021 7:23 PM  

With thousands of various sects all claiming to be "Christian," and with the animosity of most of those sects against any other "Christian" sect which differs from them in credo, what exactly IS Christian America? It's absurd to suggest that this country is a Christian nation. There are some Christian trappings shared between various claimants to the title "Christian Church," such as Baptism, Matrimony, and a few other things, but it ends there. And what of it? Christians are to be one, holy, catholic and apostolic. The Founding Fathers of this nation were most definitely NOT Christians, rather they were, for the most part, deists. But that's our problem---Christianity, our lack of it. God is sorting it all out as we speak. He will have the last word. He founded a Church 2000 years ago. It's called The Catholic Church (NOT to be confused with the outfit currently run by the clown, "Pope" Francis). If people did historical research they would learn, inescapably, that the Catholic Church is the only church that goes all the way back to Christ.

Blogger Jack Amok April 21, 2021 7:27 PM  

But what about the mid-range, the 100-130 IQ group that makes up almost half the population? They have the ability to think, to grasp logical concepts.

You've been around here long enough to know those are the midwits. They think they're smart, but they're not really very smart at all.

At IQ 130, you've just barely started out of linear thinking territory. 2nd order thinking is still mostly beyond them, and because they think they're smart, they will assume someone using 2nd order reasoning must be stupid because it doesn't make sense to them.


Blogger MichaelJMaier April 21, 2021 7:31 PM  

The churches caving to COVID madness was a wake-up call for me. I really would have thought more people would have spines in this world. Sad to be so wrong.

Blogger heidi April 21, 2021 7:39 PM  


Dialectic is hard to witness and even harder to engage when you have people who lack the basic grammar (fundamentals) of their chosen thought process. There are too many who skip directly from information to attempted rhetoric. They show themselves completely incapable of forming credible and influential opinions simply because they have no idea how to take a concept apart and put it back together.

Much like those who live in a disposable society and assume that they could wander out to a homestead and live off the land because they read a book on it once in the 8th grade.

The work, the REAL work, necessary to develop the understanding to wax rhetorical is as obtainable as a 47 year old couch potato dead lifting 200.

Or the mental equivalent of an SJW attempting a sense of humor.

Blogger Dire Badger April 21, 2021 7:59 PM  

To be fair, even those of us that are not particularly bright have the ability to use and perceive logic... as long as we are willing to 'do the work' of laboriously plotting out what is obvious and comparing it to what we are told.

living by the sweat of your brow means being willing to think to those same standards, and it is as available to those of us with sub-120 IQ's as it is to the genius crowd.

The problem is NOT stupidity. It is Laziness, and has always been laziness.

Blogger Didas Kalos April 21, 2021 8:11 PM  

Who even reads the Bible anymore?
In 72-80 hours or so you can read through it. Neither do most Christians ever check what the pastor says against the Scriptures.

Blogger RedJack April 21, 2021 8:19 PM  

I have been reading a book about Williams Jennings Byran lately.
Swamp Fox this crap was huge in the gilded age, and explains much of the politics of the time

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 21, 2021 8:20 PM  

"And attempting to appeal to a syncretist's sense of right and wrong is pointless. They don't have any such sense."

Every last one of them thinks they do though. "If I like it it's good, if I dislike it it's bad." Enlightened self-interest, meet your successors -- the people who are convinced they are enlightened particularly strongly because they are not.

Blogger 7916 April 21, 2021 8:30 PM  

I'd be curious enough to look at the questions used as the basis for the study.

Blogger Shane Bradman April 21, 2021 8:35 PM  

Geoffroi, what Catholic education are you talking about? They taught us a few stories such as Jesus as a child, the wedding at Cana and briefly the crucifixion. They didn't teach us anything beyond that like the parts that confront the decadent, worldly lifestyle, or let us know the consequences of sin on our life on Earth and beyond. The Catholic worldview is coherent and theologically sound, but nobody is taught it. Catholic schools are notorious for making children into atheists because there's no consistency or orthodoxy, only confusion and deceit that serves the hedonist at the cost of the moral soul.

Blogger Mr Smith April 21, 2021 8:51 PM  

Of course they are. No generation has vampirically clinged to a Faustian bargain, to live within a decayed corpus in a forever-now, in this hellscape of a world, as the Boomers have. Never believing that there's a better world after this one.

It's the Boomer ethos in their anthem, by John Lennon.

"Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people living for today."

Blogger MeneMene April 21, 2021 9:12 PM  

Jeremiah 23:“Is not My word like a fire?” says the LORD, “And like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?"

Hebrews 4:For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

If you spend time in it, it will change you.

Blogger CarpeOro April 21, 2021 9:31 PM  

@Azimus
I think your barking up the wrong tree. From what I've seen in life, there are very smart people that that waste time building reasoning systems that are built on false premise - like there not being a God. On the other hand I've met guys of average intelligence that don't know who St. Augustine was but would readily comprehend his faith.

IQ is a tool you have been gifted - not a measure of value or faith.

Blogger The Last Roman April 21, 2021 9:46 PM  

I asked the lady that runs my RCIA about some of the history and philosophical arguments made in defence of the Roman Church and how they differ from those of the Byzantine Church. She replied that it's not her job to make Catholics. I guess there's not much hope for those outside of the Church when I get that response from someone in her position.

Blogger Jack Amok April 21, 2021 9:47 PM  

Hence, the obvious answer is Christian society, where making following the Good, Beautiful and True may not be wholly without peril, but comfortable and convenient for most people.

If you read through the linked article and look up the "worldviews" the author finds most dominant, you'll discover it's exactly what you described - a (sub?) version of Christianity that's comfortable and convenient for people to follow.

"Moralistic therapeutic deism" is the Churchianity of today, where "...God requires little, and the church is a helpful social institution filled with nice people..." It's churches that fly the rainbow flag so the congregation doesn't have to worry about being mean to the LGBTQ crowd, and really, where "we're all sinners" morphs into "hey, what's the big deal, everybody does it."

Blogger Chill Penguin April 21, 2021 10:01 PM  

@53 everyone who works in God's vineyard gets the same penny, but there are levels of knowledge, from the guy who is saved but doesn't know much of the Bible. We should try as much as possible to be at peace with other men, but there are some unsaved people who we can live with more than others, it's much harder to live with people who think divorce is ok or don't respect monogamy and the views that people have in many European countries are shocking. So there's more to the assertion that this is a Christian and Christian-friendly country than to complain that educated people today are more ignorant of the Bible than anyone would have been 100 years ago.

Blogger Doktor Jeep April 21, 2021 10:10 PM  

"cut-and-paste approach to making sense of life"

That paste is the glue called "solipsism".

Blogger Azimus April 21, 2021 10:20 PM  

30. UnknownApril 21, 2021 4:37 PM
I think dealing *exclusively* in dialectic is not a sign of high IQ, but a sign of autism. If someone is both smart and wise, they certainly will not lack the ability to deal in rhetoric, but rather be fluent in both. Many smart people are very rhetorically minded, such as Donald Trump.


I was thinking purely in terms of inputs to decision making, and I realize now I was not specific. You're thinking in terms of outputs I expect, but every output is also an input, take your example of Donald Trump. He definitely mixed data/facts with emotional appeals. My contention is that there's a cross-section of individuals in the population where dialectic can appeal in certain scenarios and rhetoric in others in making decisions like voting. For example "Her name was __________ " when talking about some pretty girl murdered by a thug illegal to vote for tighter border controls, the same person who is unmoved by a statistic like "there were 76,000 arrests last month on the Texas border." That same person might vote no in every single school district property tax levy referendum because it would cost them $100/yr, but be unmoved by "its for our children" rhetoric. I'm trying to figure out if its binary or not, and if not, how does one get the upper hand over the other in the same person?

Blogger DrivingDissent April 21, 2021 10:27 PM  

A house built on shifting sands will not stand.

Blogger Azimus April 21, 2021 10:37 PM  

31. UnknownApril 21, 2021 4:45 PM
Rhetorical speakers will naturally tune out Dialectic's formal proof structure as "nonsense" or "technobabble"... dialectic speakers typically assume Rhetoric speakers are lying because of the reliance on emotional trigger points.


I agree with all this, and I myself tend strongly to the dialectic side, but I'd be lying to myself if I said rhetoric does not have its effect from time to time. Take covid as an example, I'm looking at data set x, and it shows "covid bad, covid real bad." I'm instantly on a "challenge" footing, assuming it was manipulated in some way. But then I look at data set z, and it shows "covid the flu bro" and I get this feeling of edification and "damn straight we got the science" - I'm on an automatically-agree-like-and-share footing. Maybe I'm the only one that does this? Is bias an rhetorical appeal to one's self? And how did I arrive at this bias in the first place, I am an engineer and a plant manager, not a doctor?

Blogger Azimus April 21, 2021 10:45 PM  

45. Valar AddemmisApril 21, 2021 6:14 PM
This is true. But then you're jumping right to believing that being able to grasp logical concepts truly drives their beliefs and behavior, which is a pretty big leap. It's just as possible that they simply use thinking and logical concepts to justify the beliefs that just feel right.


This. But do you think this peculiar to the midwits? Why not the high IQ? And if the latter can do it, is there any such thing as actual dialectic thinking, or is it a process of just selecting the data one's bias pushes you to, hence everyone being syncretic?

Blogger Azimus April 21, 2021 10:51 PM  

54. Jack AmokApril 21, 2021 7:27 PM
You've been around here long enough to know those are the midwits. They think they're smart, but they're not really very smart at all.

At IQ 130, you've just barely started out of linear thinking territory. 2nd order thinking is still mostly beyond them, and because they think they're smart, they will assume someone using 2nd order reasoning must be stupid because it doesn't make sense to them.


Agreed. But disregarding for the moment the power of the dialectic mind in question, is there some kind of "rhe-alectic" middle ground where rhetoric leverages decision-making in the same person some times, and dialectic others? I don't mean opinions - my opinion on covid doesn't matter a damn one way or the other, for example - I mean on actual decision making and acting - voting, buying, selling, picking a major, marrying, buying a stock, starting a business, etc, etc, etc? And if there are these "mixed" people, how come they to be that way?

Blogger Azimus April 21, 2021 11:07 PM  

57. Dire BadgerApril 21, 2021 7:59 PM
To be fair, even those of us that are not particularly bright have the ability to use and perceive logic... as long as we are willing to 'do the work' of laboriously plotting out what is obvious and comparing it to what we are told.

living by the sweat of your brow means being willing to think to those same standards, and it is as available to those of us with sub-120 IQ's as it is to the genius crowd.

The problem is NOT stupidity. It is Laziness, and has always been laziness.


In the end a 5HP pump could pump Lake Michigan dry just as well as a 20,000HP pump, it is just a matter of time, that is true. So the low-IQ CAN use dialectic, and I conflated the potential with the current reality. If we simply removed the "post-need society" lethargy and introduce urgent needs amongst the low-IQ, something like "Where will I get food tomorrow?", I think we would be surprised what ingenious devices they create to get by. And this fits well with the history of man.

And if it is tied to laziness, how does that square with someone who is sometimes persuaded by rhetoric, sometimes dialectic? Can you be situationally lazy? Or are you suggesting that there is no mixed-bag population out there?

Blogger brbrophy April 21, 2021 11:20 PM  

"Most people seem more interested in living a life of comfort and convenience..."
Pray for God to makes us uncomfortable.

Blogger Paid Soros Troll April 21, 2021 11:34 PM  

Was that really worth 4 posts?

Blogger GammaCatch April 21, 2021 11:37 PM  

Eastern Mysticism and Marxism, seeing that creep into EVERYTHING 30 years ago, absolute rage. And it never stopped.

Blogger Sean Carnegie April 22, 2021 12:37 AM  

Tim in DC wrote:“We have reached a critical mass of stupidity”

I quote myself from the 2008 election of Obama


Each time of the four is more ironic than the last.

Blogger Sean Carnegie April 22, 2021 12:45 AM  

Tim in DC wrote:“We have reached a critical mass of stupidity”

I quote myself from the 2008 election of Obama


And the two that did here in Alberta, GraceLife and Fairview Baptist (that I used to attend), have been getting flak from everyone Christian and non. Then the Polish Church that was showcased on Breitbart opened on Easter. Nothing else even thinks about it because "sanctity of life" and other nonsense.

Blogger Arthur Isaac April 22, 2021 1:52 AM  

My views, no matter how convoluted and idiosyncratic are right. Your views, no matter how reasonable, cohesive and consistent with reality are wrong. That is why 2+2= you're a racist bigot.

Blogger "William Berke" April 22, 2021 2:07 AM  

"Syncretism is the only philosophy that is accessible to those whose minds are limited to rhetoric."

That is not a philosophy. If an individual is limited to rhetoric, they have no philosophy.

Blogger cyrus83 April 22, 2021 2:39 AM  

This has been more or less of a problem since Constantine, when a whole bunch of people became Christian because it was the religion of the emperor. Empires tend to syncretism to try and reconcile their multiple religious views with about as much success as the idea of mixing the races.

It's not surprising America is syncretist by and large given the wide spectrum of religious views it has had since its founding.

Blogger soonercraze6 April 22, 2021 3:19 AM  

Considering the Roman Catholic Church was founded 3 centuries after the death of Christ and actually persecuted apostolic christianity, I am thinking the reformation is not to blame here

Blogger ButcherBear April 22, 2021 3:35 AM  

99% of actual saved Christians have not ever read the bible cover to cover. 99.999% of people who identify as Christian, who don't know the Gospel, of salvation by grace, through faith, haven't read any bible. Now add in that many people dont use the correct English bible, the KJV, and you have an ignorant population. Most churches don't preach anything other than peace and love, when Jesus said he came to bring division, and a sword. Everyone needs to be in a good, soul winning, fire breathing, independant baptist church.

Blogger FrankNorman April 22, 2021 4:34 AM  

22. Geoffroi de Bohemonde April 21, 2021 4:07 PM
WRT Catholicism you do not know what you are talking about. It is the only Christian faith that demands one arrive at belief through reason. Catholic religious education emphasizes philosophical inquiry most of all.


Do you actually, seriously believe what you posted there?
Roman Catholics are Rationalists now? What happened to everyone being expected to accept whatever "The Church" taught?

But hey, if edgy young Atheists can claim to have arrived at their beliefs through "reason" when in reality they are merely parroting whatever some self-appointed intellectual posted on the Internet, why can't Papists?

Blogger Geoffroi de Bohemonde April 22, 2021 5:17 AM  

It surprised me at first when I read that Satan was the number one search topic a few weeks ago when the Nike shoe premiered. Then it occurred to me that people were literally that ignorant of the Bible nowadays. It was a sobering realization.

Blogger Geoffroi de Bohemonde April 22, 2021 5:36 AM  

Some were Deists, most were one or another of the major protestant denominations of Britain at the time. Our revolution was a continuation of the English Civil War to a great extent. Most colonies banned Catholicism. Firebrand evangelicals fueled the revolution. The British called them the Black Robe regiment. We need such men to return in large numbers.

Blogger Geoffroi de Bohemonde April 22, 2021 5:48 AM  

I listen to Word on Fire CDs, Church Militant, Archbishop Fulton Sheen, Father Malachi Martin, etc. The church is the foundation of Western Civilization. You need to seek it out a little but I am barely scratching the surface. No other church can claim such a rich basis in study.It is just largely in the past. Prophecy provides updates and maintains contact with God on a daily basis. Read City of God or Confessions to start.

Blogger Geoffroi de Bohemonde April 22, 2021 5:55 AM  

One can say the same about Protestant churches. Much depends on the bishop and local priests. All churches have been corrupted, but individual parishes vary considerably as do Protestant sects. I have little doubt that the Smoke of Satan has entered the sanctuary. But I can say that church attendance among Protestant sects is dropping faster than with Catholic churches.

Blogger Unknown April 22, 2021 6:08 AM  

Honest questions, not trying to score smart boy points or troll.

What are the positives of being a Christian in 2000s America?

Depending on the church and community, a sense of tradition, or extended family, or desire to belong. Some of the bigger churches also provide weekly events, entertaining services, and sometime meaningful interesting messages.

Some communities/churches also provide business links, but that is rare now.

What are the negatives?

Most services are boring, dry lectures and songs better suited to the early 1800s. The difficulty of getting the kids up on your one day to sleep in, now that greedy corporations have turned Saturday in work from home on email and documents day.

If Catholic, the real possibility that your priest rapes little boys or covers up for those who do. And a moderate side helping of SJW.

If mainstream Protestant, SJW BS shoved down your throat.

The real question is, why is the Christian faith still doing okay in the US?

Either people realize the core faith is real, or the Holy Spirit is working.

Blogger rumpole5 April 22, 2021 6:15 AM  

This is not a new problem: "In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes." Judges 17:6.

Blogger Unknown April 22, 2021 6:27 AM  

The problem with reason is that one can reason themselves into believing pretty much anything.

Blogger LadyGerbil April 22, 2021 6:37 AM  

It is terribly sad that the deceivers have succeeded in deceiving the whole world now. Christians quote the popes, or church fathers, judaists quote malmonides or a rebbe, muslims quote Muhammad or the hadith. None bother with the Word of God any more.

Christians are wrapped up in traditions and lawlessness. Idols in churches, eating swine flesh, terrible to see. Judaists are wrapped up in even more traditions and lawlessness, added thousands of laws to God's laws, and deny Jesus is a messiah and son of God still. Muslims were fooled by the false prophet, and obey some of the law, but not much, and also deny who Jesus is.

None of the above actually even appreciate who Jesus truly is, and none of them, not one, keep the Sabbaths as set by God's lunar-solar calendar. Or new moon days, or the holy festival dates, or making offerings.

This is why the the first shall be last, because all of the above think they are in the right, and they won't change, and won't make the cut. But the last, in these times of sorrows, the babes in faith, most will see the truth, thanks to God's mighty Hand and a final outpouring of His grace, through the blood of His son, the anointed man, Jesus.

Blogger Bearable Pain April 22, 2021 6:41 AM  

Brilliant. I recently read the whole Bible four years ago while investigating Judaism and it's theological roots. I was shocked at what I found. I was raised Orthodox and also attended Mennonite Bible study as a child and I can say that American Zionist-Protestantism is a syncretism of Judaism and Christianity which obviously is irreconcilable. Karl Marx alludes to that syncretism in his essay, On the Jewish Question and Israel Zangwill confirms the syncretism in his essay The Position Of Judaism where he states Israel became a Protestant Nation in it's need to align itself with the Christian majority in Europe. The worship of money is the god that most people worship and end up being terrorized by. You can't put one name on it like Marx did because that would be anti-semitic.

Blogger Unknown April 22, 2021 8:28 AM  

The "Shut down church services" Christians cite Romans 13 for justification. I don't hear much talk from them about Hebrews 10:25? "Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another; and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching." How can you exhort your brother and sister sitting at home on Sunday?

Blogger Harambe April 22, 2021 8:36 AM  

Unknown wrote:Honest questions, not trying to score smart boy points or troll.

What are the positives of being a Christian in 2000s America?



Well there was this one study that found we had more satisfying sex lives...

Blogger Harambe April 22, 2021 8:39 AM  

One thing that is clear from the comments here is that the catholics will try to kill us all again the moment they gain power.

Blogger Colonel Blimp April 22, 2021 8:41 AM  

You do realize RCIA is often taught by older church volunteers that often don't know very much? What you need is a fantastic sponsor that is more on the academic side and also sit down with a decent priest and pick his brain. Let's be honest if you ask 99% of Americans to tell you the difference between Byzantine and some other Church you're going to get the same clueless response. Be less spergy and more open to the love of God. If it's not as a Catholic so be it, but be careful your pride doesn't lead you the something that fits you instead of making you fit Him.

Blogger FrankNorman April 22, 2021 8:55 AM  

94. The Child April 22, 2021 6:37 AM
None of the above actually even appreciate who Jesus truly is, and none of them, not one, keep the Sabbaths as set by God's lunar-solar calendar. Or new moon days, or the holy festival dates, or making offerings.


Please pull your head out of the Old Testament. None of that special lunar day stuff applies to Christians under the New Covenant.

Blogger Some Guy April 22, 2021 9:15 AM  

"What are the positives of being a Christian in 2000s America?"

Eternal Life....?

Blogger LoneWolf April 22, 2021 9:17 AM  

@ 84. soonercraze6April 22, 2021 3:19 AM:
"Considering the Roman Catholic Church was founded 3 centuries after the death of Christ and actually persecuted apostolic christianity, I am thinking the reformation is not to blame here"

Wanna back that up with historical sources, or it that just something which you WANT to think?

Blogger LoneWolf April 22, 2021 9:21 AM  

@ 98. Harambe:
"One thing that is clear from the comments here is that the catholics will try to kill us all again the moment they gain power."

You're a comedian, right?

Blogger Newscaper312 April 22, 2021 9:35 AM  

I think one of the few things Vatican 2 got right was turning away from the relish with which older school Catholicism insisted other Christians were going to be roasting in Hell for not completely toeing the line from Rome on doctrine. The opposite of this not that differences are irrelevant, but that the [presumed] "best" should not be so eager to hate "better". Lord knows the RC Church has historically had some pretty bad flaws.

Blogger dienw April 22, 2021 9:53 AM  

LoneWolf wrote:@ 98. Harambe:

"One thing that is clear from the comments here is that the catholics will try to kill us all again the moment they gain power."

You're a comedian, right?


History calls you to be either an uninformed fool or a blood thirsty liar.

Blogger OneWingedShark April 22, 2021 10:14 AM  

Unknown wrote:Most services are boring, dry lectures and songs better suited to the early 1800s.
Have you been to a church in the past 20 years?
I take it you haven't actually listened to sermons from the 1800s, or actually listened to the traditional music.
Traditional American hymnody is packed full of great theology, which is why it's largely been dropped typically in favor of the disgusting "Jesus is my boyfriend"- and "repeat a word"-style bullshit.

rumpole5 wrote:This is not a new problem: "In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes." Judges 17:6.
You do realize that in Heaven everyone will do that which is right in their own eyes too, right? (The main difference is that there our eyes will be clear, and we will truly & fully understand sin and its consequences, and most/best of all: "And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Look! God's dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God." [Rev 21:3])

Blogger The Observer April 22, 2021 10:20 AM  

If you read through the linked article and look up the "worldviews" the author finds most dominant, you'll discover it's exactly what you described - a (sub?) version of Christianity that's comfortable and convenient for people to follow.

"Moralistic therapeutic deism" is the Churchianity of today, where "...God requires little, and the church is a helpful social institution filled with nice people..." It's churches that fly the rainbow flag so the congregation doesn't have to worry about being mean to the LGBTQ crowd, and really, where "we're all sinners" morphs into "hey, what's the big deal, everybody does it."


I think you misunderstand my intent. That's not following the Good, the Beautiful or the True. Quite the opposite, in fact. I didn't mean that Christianity should be dumbed down into Churchianity, but society could be, and was arranged such that the easiest and way with least conflict would be one that involved living rightly. Much like the way most people follow the "stay in school, go to college, get a job" life plan without thinking.

Something as simple as socially ostracizing people who didn't attend church on Sunday, or being able to confess that Jesus is Lord publicly without an evil state religion coming upon you like a ton of bricks, or people who lead simple, upright lives being conferred social status by those around them as opposed to the inversion we have today.

I'm not sure if I explained it best, but I hope I got my point across.

Blogger Didas Kalos April 22, 2021 10:25 AM  

@lonewolf. Not necessary. Everyone knows.

Blogger Didas Kalos April 22, 2021 10:26 AM  

@lonewolf again. Not hardly. 3 minutes of your eyes open and you will know like all others know.

Blogger Yukichi Sensei April 22, 2021 10:42 AM  

This is one of the strangest moves of modern Cathy folks. "Reason leads to catholicism" okay butter cup. By Cathy logic odds are equally likely to be Eastern Orthodox or Anglican. Their warrants are of similar strength.

Blogger Dire Badger April 22, 2021 10:47 AM  

Azimus wrote:And if it is tied to laziness, how does that square with someone who is sometimes persuaded by rhetoric, sometimes dialectic? Can you be situationally lazy? Or are you suggesting that there is no mixed-bag population out there?

Of course there is situational laziness. Humans, even the most simple ones, are not simple beings. One has only to look at the enormous work truly lazy people will do in order to avoid work.

We have things we like to do and things we do not like to do, and there is a rather old saying that "Truth and hapiness are mutually exclusive". Being too lazy to seek the truth is the path to short-term happiness for MOST people, no matter how it bites the grasshoppers in the ass later.

There is a solution, but it is a solution most people abhor. It is the solution presented by Gabriel in the 'Constantine' movie. Humans thrive on Horror. They are at their noble best when their survival is at stake. The only way to shake them out of their laziness, moral, intellectual, and physical, is to create a situation where full responsibility for each of those choices strikes them immediately.

Not going to happen. We are far too good at altering our environment to allow the weak, pathetic, lazy, and selfish to thrive.

Humans are simply in the same rut they have always been. Strong men create soft times. Soft men create hard times. Hard times create Strong men. Ad infinatum.

So the only real solution is to allow the hard times to come. Encourage them, even knowing that they will take a horrifying toll, and try to preserve the good things for the use of later generations... not ours. we are soft, and we will die, heralding the hard times with our deaths.... as has happened to humans forever before us.

Yeah, it sucks for us as individuals, but that's why Jesus decided to stop by and hang out. We will have the chance, each time the cycle restarts, to watch the human race push that tiny bit farther in the NEXT cycle.

Blogger Tars Tarkas April 22, 2021 10:54 AM  

From how I understand it, Evangelical non-denominational Christianity is the denomination of YOU.
You pick up your preferred translation of the Bible and read it without any other knowledge or language skills, decide for yourself what it means, decide which parts are important and what parts aren't and then add it all together and call it a "personal relationship with Jesus"

People read their own biases into the Bible. I was watching a series on YT about some Amish peoples' struggles with modernity. One woman and her family started doing the whole evangelical thing and found Evangelical Christianity and Jesus really wanted her to have a car and electricity and to wear regular clothes.

A Mennonite finds Jesus wants her to have a car, feminists find Jesus wants her to have an abortion, SJWs find Jesus wants her to be an anti-racist etc. Isn't it funny how Jesus wants for you all the things you desire...
It's you-ianity, not Christianity.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd April 22, 2021 11:02 AM  

Unknown wrote:The "Shut down church services" Christians cite Romans 13 for justification.
Churchians use Romans 13 as an excuse to side with Satan. If Satan gets hold of the government, they go along. That is definitely not the point Paul was getting at.

Blogger RandyJJ April 22, 2021 11:42 AM  

@112 Tars Tarkas
From how I understand it, Evangelical non-denominational Christianity is the denomination of YOU.
You pick up your preferred translation of the Bible and read it without any other knowledge or language skills, decide for yourself what it means, decide which parts are important and what parts aren't and then add it all together and call it a "personal relationship with Jesus"


No, you're taking one possible motivation and extrapolating it to everyone. You give many examples of people finding what they want in the Bible instead of trying, with prayer and humility, to find the mind of God and assert that this describes an entire segment of people.

If one asserts that Catholics don't care about understanding God and just want someone to tell them what motions to go through, it doesn't make it true. The fact that there are Catholics like this (believe me, there are) doesn't mean that is what Catholicism is.

Instead of judging Evangelical non-denominational Christianity based on how it appears in a fat, decadent country where it is culturally the norm, try looking at Evangelical non-denominational Christians in countries where they are persecuted and judge based on that. I think you'll find the difference as stark as that between America's Democrat-voting-Biden-and-Pelosi Catholics and real Catholics in poor countries.

Blogger Jack Amok April 22, 2021 12:19 PM  

I think you misunderstand my intent.

I understand your intent, I'm just saying that it's not easy to make it easy. Even your point about socially ostracizing people who don't show up at church is a problem. People are getting taught MTD in church after all, and a lot of the degeneracy in mainstream churches is justified as "outreach."

Blogger Crush Limbraw April 22, 2021 1:32 PM  

We all reap what we sow.
Christendom built Western Civilization by establishing a structure of ethics and education through the Middle Ages. All society benefited...until the 'termites' entered in the 19th century and eventually changed Christendom to Churchiandom - which Gary North describes as Christian Humanism - and here we are.
Apostates are dealt with regularly by God - He did so with apostate Israel in 70 AD. The usual method is by simply destroying the powers of the evil mongers, often by war against another military power or by earthly natural events like floods, earthquakes or plagues.
Reading the Bible itself makes it quite clear - God is very jealous of His sovereignty and His dominion - and will not tolerate any usurpation of it. One can believe this or not - there either is a God or not - if not, nothing matters. It there is - EVERYTHING matters and we either are Christians or we ain't.
Anything in between is an evil delusion!

Blogger Tim in DC April 22, 2021 1:53 PM  

Hebrews 10:25 “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.”

Blogger Azimus April 22, 2021 2:09 PM  

@ Dire Badger

Well said my friend.

Blogger LadyGerbil April 22, 2021 2:16 PM  

@Frank Norman,

>Please pull your head out of the Old Testament. None of that special lunar day stuff applies to Christians under the New Covenant.

Paul told the Colossians to proceed with obedience to the law as regards feast days, new moons and sabbaths.. Jesus told us not a jot nor tittle of the law shall pass. Both NT scriptures btw.

You want to argue with them and remain in sin (which IS lawlessness), see how that works out for ya, me, I will obey God's laws, through my faith, thanks to the blood of Christ and the Holy Spirit.

Blogger dienw April 22, 2021 2:16 PM  

Tim in DC wrote:Hebrews 10:25 “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.”

Look,most churches are apostate; you do not attend them; you are to come out of Babylon or else you will suffer the plagues that will come upon them. Nor are you to follow false teachers lest you obtain the same consequences.

These are Biblical commands. No excuses.

Blogger RandyJJ April 22, 2021 3:20 PM  

@119 The Child

Paul told the Colossians to proceed with obedience to the law as regards feast days, new moons and sabbaths..

No, he didn't. He said to let no man judge them regarding these things. While one could read an implication into this verse to mean no one should judge their [commanded] observance of these things, a cross reference with Romans, where he says not to judge one another because one man treats a day as holy and another doesn't, indicates that it is more consistent to read it as: let no man judge your stance on these topics, whatever it may be.

Blogger FrankNorman April 22, 2021 5:05 PM  


119. The Child April 22, 2021 2:16 PM

@Frank Norman,

>Please pull your head out of the Old Testament. None of that special lunar day stuff applies to Christians under the New Covenant.

Paul told the Colossians to proceed with obedience to the law as regards feast days, new moons and sabbaths.. Jesus told us not a jot nor tittle of the law shall pass. Both NT scriptures btw.

You want to argue with them and remain in sin (which IS lawlessness), see how that works out for ya, me, I will obey God's laws, through my faith, thanks to the blood of Christ and the Holy Spirit.


People like you seem quite brazen in your ability to pretend that a passage of Scripture means the opposite of what it plainly says.
Seriously... what part of The Law of Moses was for Jews under the Old Covenant, not Christians under the New can't you understand?

Do you just ignore everything Paul says about the two different covenants?

Blogger Crew April 22, 2021 5:24 PM  

I think a big part of the problem is the reduction in average IQ over the 20 or so years (maybe more).

You need a relatively high average IQ for people to develop a consistent philosophy and theology ... otherwise they are just animists and witch doctor types.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd April 22, 2021 5:28 PM  

dienw wrote:Look,most churches are apostate; you do not attend them; you are to come out of Babylon or else you will suffer the plagues that will come upon them. Nor are you to follow false teachers lest you obtain the same consequences.
Absolutely true.

Still, we are to encourage one another, pray without ceasing for one another, build one another up - there are a whole raft of ``one anothers.'' We can't do all those one anothers unless we gather ourselves together.

Do not forsake the gathering together, but certainly don't gather with unbelievers. Find or start an unpozzed church, and gather with them. Just ten tithing families could support a pastor, if they can find or train one who will preach God's Word like He wrote it.

Blogger OneWingedShark April 22, 2021 5:28 PM  

The Child wrote:@Frank Norman,

>Please pull your head out of the Old Testament. None of that special lunar day stuff applies to Christians under the New Covenant.

Paul told the Colossians to proceed with obedience to the law as regards feast days, new moons and sabbaths.. Jesus told us not a jot nor tittle of the law shall pass. Both NT scriptures btw.

You want to argue with them and remain in sin (which IS lawlessness), see how that works out for ya, me, I will obey God's laws, through my faith, thanks to the blood of Christ and the Holy Spirit.

Are you greater than the Holy Spirit? (See verses 19-21 & 23-29.)
Now, either this letter that is recorded in the Bible is true and correct, even in its claims that "it has seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to impose on you no further burden than these essentials", or else you are calling the Bible false, or possibly you are setting your opinions as higher than the Holy Spirit.
There are no other options, other than ignorance, in which case you should apologize to the Holy Spirit and submit to His authority.

Blogger Valar Addemmis April 22, 2021 6:03 PM  

Azimus wrote:But do you think this peculiar to the midwits? Why not the high IQ? And if the latter can do it, is there any such thing as actual dialectic thinking, or is it a process of just selecting the data one's bias pushes you to, hence everyone being syncretic?

I think it's fairly universal, not a hallmark of midwittery *necessarily*. Now, why it gets associated more with midwits is that they tend to assume they know everything, or at least "if it's true I would have heard about it" type stuff. Truly smart people need no such pretension.

If by "actual dialectic thinking" you mean thinking completely free from any taint of bias, then I would argue it does not exist in the flesh. Your thinking cannot be severed completely from your person or your reality. You may be able to reason, but who can account for why you thought this one thing instead of another? Can you rule out any biases? No, but no point keeping yourself at night over it. You do the best you can, and if it's your thing pray for guidance/wisdom/discernment.

In terms of everyone being syncretic, that's probably unavoidable to at least some limited degree outside of having an official governing body ensuring common/official interpretations (see the RC church, or Orthodoxy).

I do analysis for a living. I believe I do an admirable job in that task generally starting with the data and letting it drive the analysis/interpretations/conclusions, even in cases where I have an opinion on what I think is likely or even possible. And I have proven myself wrong before. But even there, in something separate from myself and no eternal stakes, I still could not claim that biases did not shade my analysis and how I collected and interpreted data, despite my best efforts. At some point you need to stop navel gazing and just do the best you can.

Blogger SmokeyJoe April 22, 2021 7:00 PM  

@ 91 Unknown
"Most services are boring, dry lectures and songs better suited to the early 1800s. The difficulty of getting the kids up on your one day to sleep in, now that greedy corporations have turned Saturday in work from home on email and documents day."

Sounds like you'd be more interested in studying chapter by chapter, verse by verse. Using a concordence to learn the meanings of words as they are in the manuscripts. Do a search and find one, of the few, that teach that way.

Blogger bw April 22, 2021 8:03 PM  

One of the funniest jests since the fake terrorist propaganda started is that Islam believes more Christian dogma than most anyone you know....

Blogger Jack Amok April 22, 2021 8:06 PM  

is there some kind of "rhe-alectic" middle ground where rhetoric leverages decision-making in the same person some times, and dialectic others?

I don't know that I would characterize it that way, and certainly not with sub-130 IQs. What most people do instead of thinking through a question to arrive at an answer is to justify what they want the answer to be. That's why rhetoric is so effective, it essentially primes them to want the answer the rhetoric favors. Of course we're not talking about simple direct things like don't touch a hot stove with your bare hand - there's no second order thinking needed there.

But when it comes to a worldview, second order matters because it's about how society behaves as a whole, and that means how other people's behavior changes in response to your behavior. If my doing X causes you to do Y and that makes Z happen, and I'm not smart enough to understand X -> y -> Z, then I'm standing around thinking Z just randomly happened and had nothing to do with X. "Huh, must've been bad luck..."

Blogger Akulkis April 22, 2021 10:20 PM  

>> . Neither do most Christians ever check what the pastor says against the Scriptures.


A Good pastor directs the congregation to the exact book, chapter and verse before quoting the Bible, because he wants you to KNOW that he is NOT making up what he is about to say, but taking it directly from the Bible.

Blogger Akulkis April 22, 2021 10:46 PM  

>> Now add in that many people dont use the correct English bible, the KJV,

The KJV is a good translation, but due to linguistic to drift, it is not the best translation for most people. The KJV is very difficult to understand, considering that some words in English don't have the same connotations today as the connotations which they had 400 years ago.


IN case you didn't realize it, the Bible was written in a number of languages, not a single one of them even being a Germanic language, let alone English.

Blogger Akulkis April 22, 2021 10:57 PM  

>> Please pull your head out of the Old Testament. None of that special lunar day stuff applies to Christians under the New Covenant


Imagine his surprise when he finds out that the United States hasn't been operating under the Articles of Confederation for the last 238 years.

Blogger LadyGerbil April 23, 2021 7:25 AM  

@FrankPaganNorman,

You have the 2Thes2 delusion, you will burn. Good riddance to bad rubbish:

'Everyone who practices sin practices lawlessness as well. Indeed, sin is lawlessness.c 5But you know that Christ appeared to take away sins, and in Him there is no sin. 6No one who remains in Him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has seen Him or known Him.

7Little children,d let no one deceive you: The one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as Christ is righteous.e 8The one who practices sin is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the very start. This is why the Son of God was revealed, to destroy the works of the devil.

9Anyone born of God refuses to practice sin, because God’s seed abides in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born of God. 10By this the children of God are distinguished from the children of the devil: Anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God'

Blogger LadyGerbil April 23, 2021 7:30 AM  

@cowherd,

>Find or start an unpozzed church, and gather with them. Just ten tithing families could support a pastor, if they can find or train one who will preach God's Word like He wrote it.

All churches are pozzed.
Tithes are not to be given to those peddling a gospel, often a false one.
Tithes are of animals and crops, for the Levites, the poor, the widows and the fatherless and the sojourner. No Levites currently, so tithe to the poor, not to mercenary lying pastors, that's against the laws of God.

Blogger RandyJJ April 23, 2021 10:53 AM  

@134 The Child

Tithes are not to be given to those peddling a gospel

How does that square with I Corinthians 9:11-15; particularly verses 13 and 14?

Blogger RC April 23, 2021 11:05 AM  

@The Child. IIRC, you are relatively new to the faith, correct? And by new I mean less than ten years. I'm still connecting dots and I've been at this process for forty years. People here are giving you some worthy paths to investigate. You'd be wise to quietly do so. Seriously, your statements over the past week or so claiming revelation just guts your credibility.

Blogger FrankNorman April 23, 2021 11:58 AM  

133. The Child April 23, 2021 7:25 AM

@FrankPaganNorman,

You have the 2Thes2 delusion, you will burn. Good riddance to bad rubbish:


Tsk.
As is typical of Judaizer shills, you are blatantly ignoring everything in the New Testament that contradicts your position. All the Bible verses you quoted prove nothing, because you are begging the question.

No, to "practice righteousness" in the sense the Apostle John meant it doesn't mean celebrating New Moon festivals or offering animal sacrifices! I suggest you try reading the entire letter, not just the proof-texts you've been taught to quote.

There's this thing we do, see, called rational debate. Which involves giving reasons for why others should agree with you, and if they respond with arguments to the contrary, listening to their objections and responding to them.

And then there's the thing people like you do, which is slam your views down on the table, and throw a hissy-fit at anyone who disagrees. Which to us, indicates that you know that you cannot answer us.

The Apostle Paul made it plain that Christians are not expected to obey all that stuff from the Old Testament. That's not what obedience to God is about. This has been pointed out to you already.

Why are you so wanting to push stuff you know is false?

Blogger LadyGerbil April 23, 2021 2:50 PM  

@Randy

>3This is my defense to those who scrutinize me: 4Have we no right to food and to drink?

As per the law, and the way Jesus was treated, and taught his disciples, Paul was entitled to food and drink when on his travels/ministry, he was not in one place all of the time. Those verses are very badly translated too, they are not about making a living selling a gospel, look at the Greek, as always, for example verse verse 14:

https://biblehub.com/interlinear/1_corinthians/9-14.htm

The gospel to live, not the gospel to receive a living. Food and drink is all an apostle should expect, ideally a roof over his head, not $30k a year plus a house and pension. But yes, pastors and organised religions have twisted those verses to justify salaries from unwise flocks, a terrible thing. You just don't need anyone to teach you, the Holy Spirit does that, just meet in homes once or twice a week, women silent, and study the scriptures, avoid the risk of a wolf getting in the door by always testing your study back to the Word, line upon line, precept upon precept.

@RC, the matters of truth are revealed to babes you know, not the wise and learned. So, I am taught directly by my Heavenly Father, read Jeremiah 1 and reflect, and remember the Sabbath.

@Frank Norman Pharisee,

Lotsa words, no scripture, typical of your kind.

I will not waste my time responding to you any further after this comment, because you have the 2Thes2 delusions, you are doomed to a final judgement and burning. Serves you right for believing some crap from the pulpit, rather than simply being fearful of and obedient to God. To prove your delusion, here's your quote:

>The Apostle Paul made it plain that Christians are not expected to obey all that stuff from the Old Testament. That's not what obedience to God is about.

Here is Paul:

'Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. On what principle? On that of works? No, but on that of faith. 28For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the law.

29Is God the God of Jews only? Is He not the God of Gentiles too? Yes, of Gentiles too, 30since there is only one God, who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through that same faith.

31Do we, then, nullify the law by this faith? Certainly not! Instead, we uphold the law.'

You nullify the law, and I uphold it. You are the Pharisee.
I am Israel, the branch, you are a lawless pagan faker. Off you go, with these words ringing in your ears:

21Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of
heaven, but only he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22Manywill say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and
in Your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’
23Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you
workers of lawlessness!’


Blogger ex-pastor April 23, 2021 4:26 PM  

Romans chapter 14 would like a word with you.

Blogger LadyGerbil April 23, 2021 4:52 PM  

Meat or vegetables?
Food offered to idols or not?
You find these things hard to understand, Mr Wolf.

'For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.'

UNLESS YOUR RIGHTEOUSNESS (YES, YOU) EXCEEDS THAT OF THE PHARISEES, YOU (YES, YOU) SHALL IN NO WAY ENTER THE KINGDOM OF GOD.

Keep looking for excuses for your sin, by twisting Paul, and IGNORING CHRIST, and suffer the consequences, wolf.

Blogger FrankNorman April 24, 2021 10:05 AM  

138. The Child April 23, 2021 2:50 PM
@Frank Norman Pharisee,

Lotsa words, no scripture, typical of your kind.

I will not waste my time responding to you any further after this comment, because you have the 2Thes2 delusions, you are doomed to a final judgement and burning. Serves you right for believing some crap from the pulpit, rather than simply being fearful of and obedient to God. To prove your delusion, here's your quote:

>The Apostle Paul made it plain that Christians are not expected to obey all that stuff from the Old Testament. That's not what obedience to God is about.

Here is Paul:

'Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. On what principle? On that of works? No, but on that of faith. 28For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the law.

29Is God the God of Jews only? Is He not the God of Gentiles too? Yes, of Gentiles too, 30since there is only one God, who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through that same faith.

31Do we, then, nullify the law by this faith? Certainly not! Instead, we uphold the law.'



So you're calling me a Pharisee now? That's rich, considering how you are the one pushing law, law, law.

Have you ever read on from that point where you stopped your quote? Because if do, you will see him start talking about Abraham, who was justified by faith, not by keeping the Torah, which had not yet been given. And this is taught in the Torah. In this sense, Paul upholds the Torah - by being true to what it teaches.

On the other hand, you are not upholding it, you are abusing it, by pretending that everything it says applies to everyone without restriction.

So... have you offered animals as burnt offerings?

Blogger LadyGerbil April 24, 2021 1:35 PM  

As I have a few spare minutes, and for the benefit of anyone else who is still reading this thread:

>'So you're calling me a Pharisee now? That's rich, considering how you are the one pushing law, law, law.'

The Pharisees didn't push the law, they pushed traditions of men, such as hand-washing. Hence Jesus said 'they sit in the seat of Moses, so be careful to do what he (Moses) tells you, for they do not practice what they preach'.

Jesus hated the Pharisees, for that reason, and Jesus kept and taught the law (Mark 1:44 an example), and I refer you to my earlier quote of Jesus, that workers of lawlessness will not enter into the kingdom. You are literally arguing with Jesus, because you have the delusion.

>'Abraham, who was justified by faith

Christians seem not to know that justified means 'accepted as if they were righteous'. https://biblehub.com/greek/1344.htm That's what we get from God though His grace, through faith in Him and the blood of Christ, He justifies us in the first instance for our sins, before we know Him and the Lord. That is a one-off gift, followed by the period of sanctification where we have an advocate if we slip as we are being cleansed of sin, through the Holy Spirit, wherein one should submit to its teaching and (obviously) become holy and righteous and perfect, obeying the laws of God (see 1 John chapters 2-5 to confirm). You won't see it though, you have the 2Thes2 delusion.

>'not by keeping the Torah, which had not yet been given

The laws of God were given a long time before Moses re-stated them to Israel. Read the book of Enoch, Jasher, Abraham was taught the laws as a youth, he celebrated all of the feast days and made offerings etc. Moses reintroduced it, as it needed re-teaching, ditto for Ezra's re-teaching later on.

>So... have you offered animals as burnt offerings?

Of course, every sabbath, new moon days, holy feast days, peace and thank offerings too, all as commanded in God's laws, as best I can being in a pagan land without my own herds and flocks.

You know when Jesus said 'Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.', well it just so happens I am the man he was referring to. Just pot luck, was a huge surprise to me last year, but I have come to accept and give thanks for my destiny and the opportunity to serve my Father in heaven.

If you ever read Daniel 8, 9 and 11, and wondered why it mentions daily offerings:

'It magnified itself, even to the Prince of the host; it removed his daily sacrifice and overthrew the place of his sanctuary. 12And in the rebellion, the host and the daily sacrifice were given over to the horn, and it flung truth to the ground and prospered in whatever it did.'

That's referring to the second exodus location, in the mountains of Israel, when the beast will attack and stop (for a brief period) the daily offerings that will be taking place out there.

>On the other hand, you are not upholding it, you are abusing it, by pretending that everything it says applies to everyone without restriction.

As Jesus said: 'not a jot nor tittle of the law shall pass til heaven and earth have passed and all is fulfilled'.

I just checked outside my window, the earth is still there. So, obey the law, as best you can, in the true spirit of the law, as Jesus taught. Or you'll burn.

Blogger FrankNorman April 24, 2021 5:35 PM  

Time for some Bible. :-)

Galatians 3:23:

23 Before the coming of this faith, we were held in custody under the law, locked up until the faith that was to come would be revealed. 24 So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith. 25 Now that this faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian.

26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.




You know when Jesus said 'Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.', well it just so happens I am the man he was referring to. Just pot luck, was a huge surprise to me last year, but I have come to accept and give thanks for my destiny and the opportunity to serve my Father in heaven.


Aaaand I think we are done here! :-P

Blogger Mamabear37 April 25, 2021 5:55 PM  

"Syncretism is the only philosophy that is accessible to those whose minds are limited to rhetoric. This is why it's so completely useless to attempt to communicate with them using dialectic. One might as reasonably resort to Japanese or Pig Latin."

It's true. It donned on me this past weekend and I trailed off midsentence, thinking, yeah this is pointless. He's already given them over to a depraved mind- I can't argue them out of hellfire.

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