Same Sex Marriages in Mennonite Church

After ban lifted, same-sex couples wed at Germantown
by Tim Huber, Mennonite World Review

After a federal judge ruled Pennsylvania’s ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional May 20, Germantown Mennonite Church in Philadelphia hosted two marriage ceremonies for gay and lesbian couples.

Pastor Amy Yoder McGloughlin said she performed a June 24 wedding for a couple in the church who had completed a covenant ceremony six years earlier.

Plans came together quickly to secure legal protections for the couple’s children.
“Oddly enough, these were my first queer weddings ever,” McGloughlin said, noting that a July 2 wedding she officiated fell on the 20th anniversary of the couple’s original covenant ceremony. “We were very clear about the difference between a wedding and a recommitment. This was not them doing this for the first time, this was them fulfilling their marriage rights that in our congregation they already had.”

The ban’s reversal, one year after the Supreme Court struck down portions of the Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional, took many in the church by joyful surprise. A third couple in the church traveled to Vermont to get married legally in early July, having made their plans before the federal judge’s ruling.

More here:

http://mennoworld.org/2014/07/14/after-ban-is-lifted-same-sex-couples-wed-at-germantown/

‘Wisely’ Revised Mennonite Perspective on Sin

The author of a recent article in The Mennonite, a monthly magazine for members of Mennonite Church USA, wonders if today’s same-sex marriage debate is a timeless biblical command or just one of the latest ‘wisely’ revised fresh perspectives of our culture.

“It is increasingly apparent that many Christians in covenanted same-sex unions manifest the presence and power of the Holy Spirit in their lives and ministries, just as Peter recognized the work of the Spirit in uncircumcised Cornelius. This witness is significant because the Holy Spirit’s presence suggests a life in faithful relationship with God and because the Holy Spirit often runs ahead of the churches’ formal decision-making. First came the Holy Spirit baptism of Cornelius and the irruption of the Gentile churches, followed by the Jerusalem Council’s process of discernment and authoritative decision.


Above all, it is clear that mutual, self-giving love can and does occur in a marriage between two Christians of the same gender, reflecting the union of Christ and the church. 


That is, a couple of the same sex can meet the “sacramental” requirements of marriage, illuminating Christ’s presence and serving as a means of grace to the world. No less than heterosexual marriage, such unions can be exclusive, permanent and issue in shared lives of service to God.”

- Martin Shupack, 2014-06-01 ISSUE: Beyond dual[ing] narratives on same-sex marriage The Bible, experience and Christian charity allow for the exception of same-sex marriage. http://www.themennonite.org/issues/17-6/articles/Dualing_narratives_on_samesex_marriage

At this rate, where will the Mennonite Church USA be found on the following list?

Where Christian churches, other religions stand on gay marriage http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/06/18/where-christian-churches-stand-on-gay-marriage/

How soon until all the dialogue and ‘wise’ revisions puts more Mennonites adrift in the sea of politically correct compromise. . .

Presbyterians (USA) Vote to Allow Homosexual ‘Marriages’ by 3-1 Ratio http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/?p=15681

Mennonites bending their ears to the earth

The earth is the LORD’S, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. Psalm 24:1

Next month, on July 28-31, Mennonite Church Canada will be gathering together at Native Assembly 2014 in Winnipeg, Manitoba.[1] Together, Mennonites and aboriginals are going to celebrate through song and ceremony on the land, hear from elders and teachers, and bend their ears to the earth. Here they will discover old and new teachings which will bring them “closer to the Spirit, to each other, and to the land.”

According to the schedule, each of the four days opens with sacred fire prayer times followed by workshops that teach such things as Water, Fire, Wind and Earth: Creator’s Medicine Chest, following the Natural Laws of Nature, and the 7 Sacred Teachings of the Ojibwe to see what the animals have to teach them. Another workshop is about reading the Bible outdoors in God’s ‘second book’, the land, to see what happens when one is read in the presence of the other.

Participants, leaders and speakers include representatives from the Mennonite Central Committee, Canadian Mennonite University, Mennonite Women USA and various First Nations members, leaders and elders.

One of the workshop leaders is Dave Courchene – Nii Gaani Aki Innini (Leading Earth Man), who carries his message of hope and peace to the world. He believes his ancient Indigenous knowledge is “the foundation in supporting the New Life that Mother Earth is now entering, and that the Elders have confirmed has arrived.”[2]

A member of the Pine Creek First Nation will light the first Sacred Fire on opening night of Native Assembly, and the Summer Bear Dance Troupe will perform on opening day.

“Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen” Jeremiah 10:2

As these Mennonites participate in First Nations ceremonies, bend their ears to the earth, and learn old and new teachings from aboriginal elders to bring them closer to the Spirit, each other, and to the land, are they not putting the creation before God, who created all things for His glory(Romans 1:25)?

That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Phil. 2:10-11

Endnotes:

[1]http://home.mennonitechurch.ca/event/NativeAssembly2014/theme
[2]http://www.trcm.ca/public-education/speakers-bureau/speakers-bureau-member-profiles/dave-courchene/

Related:

How should a Christian view environmentalism? http://www.gotquestions.org/environmentalism-Christian.html

The Environmental Agenda, The New World Religion: The Spiritual Roots of Global Government http://www.garykah.org/GaryKah/The_Environmental_Agenda_files/The%20Environmental%20Agenda%20.pdf

Cult of Green: The United Nations Environmental Sabbath and the New Global Ethic http://forcingchange.wordpress.com/2012/11/28/cult-of-green-the-united-nations-environmental-sabbath-and-the-new-global-ethic/

All for Gaia – Earth Day and Total Transformation by Carl Teichrib http://www.crossroad.to/articles2/forcing-change/09/4-earth-gaia.htm

Mennonite-Catholic Collaboration

A century old Mennonite church in Ukraine is being restored into a Greek Catholic church with help from Canadian Mennonites. The building fell into disrepair when Mennonites were forced to leave during the Soviet era.

“Observers call the project an example of Mennonite-Catholic collaboration in the spirit of other exchanges over the past decade or so….

“Initially Father Peter was afraid that Mennonites wanted to take back the church,” said George Dyck, treasurer of Friends of the Mennonite Centre in Ukraine, the Canadian-based charity providing partial funding to the project over the past year.
Dyck describes the involvement as a “mutual embrace of returning Mennonites with their former fellow villagers.”

… Darrin Snyder Belousek said the renovation “is the fruit of the renewal of the Catholic Church in Ukraine.” Snyder Belousek is executive director of Bridgefolk, a North American-based movement of Mennonites and Cath­olics with an annual gathering to learn from each other’s traditions.”

Source: Greek Catholics restore Ukraine church building
May 26, 2014 by Ron Rempel and Mennonite World Conference http://mennoworld.org/2014/05/26/greek-catholics-restore-ukraine-church-building/

The common ground for this collaboration is based on past persecution and remaining faithful. However, are these Mennonites remaining faithful, to the gospel or their founder, by building such bridges with the church of Rome? Would their founder, who renounced the teachings of the church of Rome, smile upon such compromise?

“I voluntarily renounced all my worldly honor and reputation, my unchristian conduct, masses, infant baptism, and my unprofitable life, and at once willingly submitted to distress and poverty, and the cross of Christ.”

-Menno Simons, MENNO SIMONS RENUNCIATION OF THE CHURCH OF ROME http://www.mennosimons.net/ft002-renunciation.html

RELATED:

Mennonite Pope? http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/03/20/mennonite-pope/

Call for an Ecumenical Mennonite Denomination http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/05/14/call-for-an-ecumenical-mennonite-denomination/

The Deception behind Evangelicals and Catholics Together http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2010/11/12/the-deception-behind-evangelicals-and-catholics-together/

Common Cause – for Concern http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2011/02/14/common-cause-for-concern/

Mennonite Students go to Benedictine Monastery to Sit in Silence http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2011/09/23/mennonite-trekkers-go-to-benedictine-monastery-to-sit-in-silence/

Mennonite seminary hosts conference on Mary http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2011/02/15/mennonite-seminary-hosts-conference-on-mary/

McLaren’s Palestinian Justice Speech, Part 2

In the last half of his plenary talk at a FOSNA conference this April in Portland, Oregon, in his case to prove that Christians are responsible for creating the injustice that currently exists in Palestine, Brian McLaren went into further detail about his problem with all the accounts in the Bible where God said to wipe out the surrounding nations, people and even animals, in what he calls the ‘texts of genocide.’

“Through its appropriation of “texts of terror” and especially through the application of those texts to the Jews, the Christian religion created the conditions for the oppression of Palestinians.”
-Brian McLaren, Seeds of Hope and Justice for Palestinians and Israelis [1]

McLaren then talked about the holocaust being one of many world wide genocidal atrocities which the church has been behind, saying that “The lament that Christians should have is that Israel is treating Palestinians exactly the way Christians treated Jews, and we now lament that past.”

But is it true that the Christian religion created the conditions for oppression of Palestine? While many atrocities in the world have been done in the name of Christ, is it true for McLaren to say that Israel is treating Palestinians the way Jews were treated in the Holocaust?

First of all, it was Hitler and the Unholy Alliance who were behind the annihilation of the Jews. Secondly, Israel today treats the Palestinians better than they are treated by their own leaders. Where is the genocide happening in Israel? Just this week Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu showed to the world “the true Israel, the advanced, modern and tolerant Israel, in effect, the only country in the Middle East that ensures complete freedom of worship to those of all faiths, guards the holy places and ensures the rights of all – Jews, Muslims, Christians, everybody.”[2]

Israel is not oppressing Palestinians. The exploitation of Palestinians appears to be coming from a leadership that does not want peace, using its people as pawns while trying to annihilate Israel.

The reality is that Israel, not only as a country, but as individual citizens, lives at peace with the Palestinians. Hard to believe – but it’s true. Since 1947, when Israel accepted the U.N. Partition Plan, which gave them sovereignty over a crumb of land, Israel has continuously reached out to the Arabs for peace, only to be met with a just as continuous chant of no, no, no.

-Israel at Peace, Palestinians at War http://www.frontpagemag.com/2014/gideonisrael/israel-at-peace-palestinians-at-war/

(It is important to understand all the facts in the above article if one is to counter the anti-Israel myths.)

Nearly at the ten minute mark in the second half of his talk, McLaren says that “More of us are going to have to stand up to the Christian Zionists and others…”

Christian Zionists everywhere should be alarmed by that statement and prepared to stand up for Israel and ask McLaren and friends how they think this is going to look.

In a classic misinterpretation of the Bible, McLaren said that after Jesus read the scroll of Isaiah and rolled it up (Luke 4), what he meant by doing that is that it’s time to move on from the ‘vengeance way’ of reading the Bible, the ‘exclusive way’ – and on to a ‘universal way’ of reading the Bible.

One day men like McLaren will tremble at the real reason that Jesus stopped reading in the middle of the prophecy. He purposely stopped at the comma because the next part was about his second coming. Jesus came the first time to do his ministry in order to set the captives free. We are now living in the comma, in the age of grace, the church age, before His second coming. When the other half of the Isaiah prophecy is fulfilled – then the world will see that the ‘vengeance’ part was not left out by Jesus to move on to a ‘universal way’, as Mclaren would have his listeners believe.

At the 12:22 minute mark, McLaren says: “It is time to join with Jews, Muslims, and others who seek peace, justice and the common good.”

Someone should ask McLaren to explain why (if the religion of Islam truly seeks peace) do the Muslim nations want to destroy Israel and drive them into the sea? If they really want peace, why did they not accept the peace offerings they were first given? Are Palestinians really ‘victims’ of an ‘occupation’?

Palestinians would not have become refugees in 1948 had they agreed to the 1947 UN Partition Plan. There would have been no Palestinian refugees, had they chosen not to attack and terrorize the Jewish community in Palestine in 1929, 1936-1939, and later in 1948, when they attempted to extinguish the nascent Jewish state. History repeated itself in 1967. After the Six Day War, Israel offered to negotiate peace with the Arab States. The response came from the Khartoum, Arab Summit, “No to Peace, No to negotiations with Israel, and No to recognition of Israel.”
… The “occupation” mantra is meant to appeal to emotions and not facts. Israel is the legal administrator of the territories until a peace settlement is reached. The “occupation” could have ended in 1967 if the Arab states and the PLO had agreed to make peace as UN Resolution 242 required. The Palestinians could have acquired statehood in 1947, or once again under the Oslo Accords process. They chose instead to launch an intifada (uprising) against Israel, rather than “end the conflict.”

- The Self-Inflicted Palestinian Victimhood http://www.frontpagemag.com/2014/joseph-puder/the-self-inflicted-palestinian-victimhood-2/

Near the end of his talk, McLaren promotes his new book, “We Make the Road by Walking” (a re-imagined re-telling of the Bible). On his powerpoint beside his book is a CS Lewis photo with the caption: “It is time to reclaim the Bible as “a book for grown ups.” This CS Lewis quote seems to be out of context. It is from Mere Christianity, where Lewis makes fun of those who reject the Christian’s idea of heaven because they don’t want to spend eternity playing harps. He says, “The answer to such people is that if they cannot understand books written for grown-ups, they should not talk about them” (p 121, Mere Christianity). Perhaps it is time for someone to suggest to Brian McLaren that if he cannot understand the Bible, he should not try to re-tell it [3].

Under McLaren’s powerpoint topical sentence: “We cannot be naive about the possible subconscious motivations for maintaining the status quo,” he notes that what happened recently with World Vision (hiring gays)[4] was just a matter of economic bullying by the elite. One of his other points, which he does not read out loud, is; “legitimization for a new scapegoat Islam”.[5] Does this mean that McLaren thinks that Islam is being bullied by the elite?

McLaren ends his presentation with a ‘thanks to Sabeel for the great leadership’ [6] followed by a very short Q&A where at 16 minutes he says that ‘the fundamentalist ways of reading the text are just soooo unfair to the text. When you really love a text you realize there is so much more going on.’ Does McLaren love the Biblical text enough to realize there is so much more going on?

After reading the question (at 19:30, followed by audience laughter): “Do you think peace in Israel will signal the end times?” – the moderator then asks McLaren to briefly comment on Revelation. McLaren answers that Revelation is a literature of the oppressed… a message that is speaking the truth indirectly. Like the sword on the guy riding on the horse that is coming out of his mouth (Revelation 19)[7]. If you wanna take that literally, says McLaren, that is comic. He then explains that the unarmed peaceful Messiah who rode in on a donkey is the real message, that peace is more powerful, and that the blood on his robe is only the blood of the powerless victim that overcomes the violence of his oppressor. (This is in keeping with the heretical non-violent atonement theory of Steve Chalke and others which denies the penal, substitutionary atonement of Christ on the cross.)

Teachers like McLaren cannot discern that the sword in Jesus’ mouth represents the power of His Word, that His robe is stained in either the blood of His enemies or His own blood (a reminder of the cross). They cannot see that this is not the meek and mild Jesus who came the first time as a lamb. This Jesus is the returning King, the Lion of Judah, who by His righteousness will demand attention and submission when He comes back (as prophesied) to the rebellious world in the day of vengeance at the end of this age of grace. How sobering for any man who dares to take away the power of that image in the words describing the things which shall be hereafter, as told to us in the revelation of Jesus Christ, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

“And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.” Revelation 22:19

Why is it important to critique the clever words of those like McLaren? Because of the way they are valued by Christian denominations, some Mennonite, who have allowed emerging church literature and resources with McLaren’s name on the label into their churches and institutes of learning, or have had him in as a guest to speak, or are involved in the same causes as McLaren and friends that contradict the Word of God. The question of urgency in these perilous times is: are you a friend Jesus, the soon returning King? Or Brian McLaren, friend of Sabeel and FOSNA[8], who says the guy on the horse with the sword is comic?

 

Endnotes:

[1] At about 4 minutes into the Part 2 youtube clip of his presentation, see: Christian responsibility for Palestinian Justice, Part 2 of Brian McLaren’s plenary talk at “Seeds of Hope and Justice for Palestinians and Israelis” at a FOSNA(Friends of Sabeel North America) conference, April, 2014 in Portland, Oregon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3hM7Us1wDzk
[2] Netanyahu: Pope visiting only Mideast state to offer true freedom of religion http://www.jpost.com/LandedPages/PrintArticle.aspx?id=353279
[3] http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/05/16/mclarens-new-book-a-new-kind-of-year-long-church-curriculum/
[4] World Vision: Why We’re Hiring Gay Christians in Same-Sex Marriages http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2014/march-web-only/world-vision-why-hiring-gay-christians-same-sex-marriage.html?paging=off
[5] Powerpoint slides available at
http://www.slideshare.net/brianmclaren/sabeel-2014
Published on Apr 21, 2014 by FOSNA Sabeel (Friends of Sabeel North America) (www.fosna.org)
[6] “Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center, headquartered in Jerusalem, has been a persistent source of anti-Zionist agitation in mainline Protestant churches in the United States since its founding in 1994. The organization subjects Israel, Jews, and Judaism to intense scrutiny while remaining nearly silent about Arab and Muslim extremism in the Middle East. In addition to publicizing the writings of its founder, Anglican priest Naim Ateek, Sabeel broadcasts its message via regional conferences in the United States and regular study missions to Israel. Far-Left American and Israeli Jews are given prominent display at Sabeel conferences, where Israel is held up to a strict biblical standard of conduct while its adversaries are held to no standard at all. By giving its followers the sense that they are engaging in a showdown with the forces of evil embodied by Israel and its U.S supporters, Sabeel reenacts the church-synagogue rivalry documented in early Christian writings.”
Read this and much more about Sabeel here:
Updating the Ancient Infrastructure of Christian Contempt: Sabeel http://jcpa.org/article/updating-the-ancient-infrastructure-of-christian-contempt-sabeel/
[7] Revelation 19 http://www.blueletterbible.org/Bible.cfm?b=Rev&c=19&v=13&t=KJV#s=1186013
[8] “Rather than truly seeking ways to coexist or to build up a normal Palestinian-Arab society, FOSNA has assembled a roster of Israel-haters and antagonists to present discussions and workshops geared toward delegitimizing and defaming Israel, hurting the Jewish state economically, and eroding support for Israel – particularly among American Christians…
.. Sabeel and Friends of Sabeel also distort history, international law, and the situation on the ground – casting Israel as “oppressors” and responsible for every “injustice” that allegedly afflicts Palestinian-Arabs. Everyone else is apparently blameless for their claimed suffering…
… Further, Sabeel considers all of the land as “Palestinian,” accuses Israel of practicing “apartheid,” and dates the “occupation” to 1948. The facts that the Palestinian Arabs rejected the U.N. Partition Plan in 1947 that offered them a state of their own, that the international community gave the land to the Jewish people for “close settlement” (as per the Mandate for Palestine issued by the League of Nations), that Judea and Samaria and the eastern half of Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip were illegally occupied respectively by Jordan and Egypt from 1948 to 1967, and that the charge of “apartheid” is laughable do not seem to matter.”
Source: The Palestinian Narrative: Seeking Peace by Waging War http://www.levitt.com/news/2014/03/29/

Related:

McLaren’s Palestinian Justice Speech, Part 1 https://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/05/27/mclarens-palestinian-justice-speech-part-1/

*Find this blog’s 5 part critique of McLaren’s teaching at Canadian Mennonite University in 2011, here: http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2011/03/17/cmu-student-found-refreshing-winds-very-cool/

**The following links may provide answers to some issues McLaren mentioned:

Why did God condone such terrible violence in the Old Testament? http://www.gotquestions.org/Old-Testament-violence.html

Why Would a Loving God Tell Israel to Wipe Out Her (enemies?) http://www.thebereancall.org/content/why-would-loving-god-tell-israel-wipe-out-her

Why would God order the destruction of men, women, and children? http://carm.org/bible-difficulties/joshua-esther/why-would-god-order-destruction-men-women-and-children

Christians condemn the Quran and Islam for all the violence taught therein, but say nothing about all the OT brutalities such as God commanding the utter annihilation of the Amalekites, including women, children and animals. Why this inconsistency? http://www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/q_amalekites.htm

Klavan’s One State Solution: Give the Middle East to the Jews http://moriel.org/MorielArchive/index.php/discernment/israel/klavans-one-state-solution-give-the-middle-east-to-the-jews

SABEEL ECUMENICAL LIBERATION THEOLOGY CENTER http://www.ngo-monitor.org/article/sabeel_ecumenical_liberation_theology_center

Attacks on Christian Zionism http://www.levitt.com/essays/christian_zionism

Palestinian Liberation Theology http://www.levitt.com/news/2012/02/15/palestinian-liberation-theology/?shared=email&msg=fail

***Also see:

The End of Evangelical Support for Israel? The Jewish State’s International Standing http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/?p=15597

‘Jesus Was a Palestinian': The Return of Christian Anti-Semitism by Melanie Philips http://www.commentarymagazine.com/article/jesus-was-a-palestinian-the-return-of-christian-anti-semitism/

Bethlehem’s ‘Christ at the Checkpoint’ Conference: A Personal Report By: Brian Schrauger http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/bethlehems-christ-at-the-checkpoint-conference-a-personal-report/2014/03/18/0/?print

Who Are the Peacemakers? http://blogs.jpost.com/content/who-are-peacemakers-0

McLaren’s Palestinian Justice Speech, Part 1

The Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA) regional conference recently took place this last April at First United Methodist Church in Portland, Oregon[1]. It was called Seeds for Justice and Hope for Palestinians and Israelis – What is required of US?

Since there are quite a few Mennonites who are fond of both Brian McLaren and Sabeel, it is fitting for this blog to draw attention to what was taught during McLaren’s one hour plenary session.

During the first half hour[2], McLaren’s talk began with his background in the Plymouth Brethren, Darby, dispensationalism, and the Jesus people movement. From there he went to questioning his beliefs in the Bible, fast-forwarding to Greenbelt to Sabeel to Israel – all parts of his journey to rethinking and writing.

Unfortunately, McLaren’s experiences on his quest left him with a jaded perception of ‘church’ as a place where there are questions you can’t ask and explanations you can’t give. Through his doubting and rethinking process, he concluded that in the same way that the Christian religion created Europe and failed Europe, the Christians created the injustice that currently exists in Palestine. Quoting several Bible passages that he calls Texts of Terror (Deuteronomy 7, Lev. 25, 1 Samuel 15:1-3, Rev. 19:11), McLaren explains that these are tickets to oppress, because people who think they are on God’s side feel they can do what is in the text, from the Middle East to Europe to the colonization of America, to slavery. (McLaren says that Columbus Day should also be changed).

Continuing on, in the last half of McLaren’s talk[3], he refers to passages from the book of the Revelation as “Texts of Terror.”

McLaren picks extreme examples of controversial speakers to make his points in this regard. One of those he quotes, who doesn’t even represent mainstream Christianity, is fringe speaker ‘Jeremy’ Boykin. (His name is actually ‘Jerry,’ not Jeremy, as McLaren has on his power point.) McLaren mentions that Boykin is a representative of Family Research Council when he said “The sword today is an AR-15, so if you don’t have one, go get one. You’re supposed to have one, it’s biblical.”[4] Boykin, an ecumenical Knight of Malta, is hardly a solid representative of the fundamentalist dispensational viewpoint.

Oddly enough, McLaren also quotes “a preacher down the road” who has said that:

“Jesus is not a pansy or a pacifist. In Revelation, Jesus is a pride fighter with a tattoo down His leg, a sword in His hand and the commitment to make someone bleed. He is saddling up on a white horse and coming to slaughter His enemies and usher in his kingdom. Blood will flow. That is a guy I can worship. I cannot worship a guy I can beat up.”[5]

McLaren does not mention that the name of this pastor down the road is the controversial Mark Driscoll (Seattle), who was once his friend and partner at the beginning of the emerging church movement, but has since distanced himself from McLaren and his false teaching.[6] Many Christians find that Driscoll takes too many liberties with his irreverent grunge vocabulary approach of teaching, earning him the reputation of the cussing mouth pastor[7].

Couldn’t McLaren have found more respected mainstream examples to represent the dispensational view of the book of Revelation? There are many pro-Israel Bible scholars and excellent, well respected teachers he could have chosen from who teach what the Bible says about the return of Jesus the Messiah as conquering King.

McLaren appears to have a few bones to pick with this view he was raised in as he defends his ‘re-thought’ position against it. Perhaps there has been a need in his pro-Palestinian camp to counter the effects of biblically grounded teacher Paul Wilkinson, who has recently been presenting his excellent expose of Sabeel and defense of Darby[8]. If you watch McLaren rehash and trash this same dispensational teaching model he grew up in as a Plymouth Brethren (in order to justify and invest his re-imagined ideology in the anti-Israel campaign), and then compare it with the presentation by Paul Wilkinson on the same topic, it becomes evident who is speaking in the power and name of God.

The next blog post[9] will examine McLaren’s views he expressed in the second half of his presentation where he went into detail on what he calles the ‘texts of genocide’ and ‘terror’ in the Bible, and blames Christians for the injustice in Palestine.

ENDNOTES:

[1] Seeds for Justice and Hope for Palestinians and Israelis http://mideastpeace.net/Portland_Sabeel_Conference_2014/Schedule.htm
[2] Christian responsibility for Palestinian Justice Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mz_caQ67gBM
[3] Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3hM7Us1wDzk
[4] See: Knight of Malta, Jerry Boykin quote – “…the sword today is an AR-15…go get one…it’s biblical” http://ephesians511blog.net/2014/02/26/knight-of-malta-jerry-boykin-quote-the-sword-today-is-an-ar-15-go-get-one-its-biblical/
[5]http://web.archive.org/web/20071013102203/http://relevantmagazine.com/god_article.php?id=7418
[6] According to Driscoll: “In the mid-1990s I was part of what is now known as the Emerging Church and spent some time traveling the country to speak on the emerging church in the emerging culture on a team put together by Leadership Network called the Young Leader Network. But, I eventually had to distance myself from the Emergent stream of the network because friends like Brian McLaren and Doug Pagitt began pushing a theological agenda that greatly troubled me.
-Mark Driscoll and the Emerging Church: http://www.driscollcontroversy.com/?page_id=9
[7] See: PROFANE PREACHERS CONTRIBUTE TO KILLING THE CONSCIENCE: http://www.newswithviews.com/West/marsha238.htm
[8] What is Christian Palestinianism: http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/02/21/what-is-christian-palestinianism/
[9] https://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/05/28/mclarens-palestinian-justice-speech-part-2/

RELATED:

Mennonite Palestinianism http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/02/21/mennonite-palestinianism/

The Anti-Israel Movement and the Mennonites: Part 1 – What’s it all about? http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/the-anti-israel-movement-and-the-mennonites-part-1/

The Anti-Israel Movement and the Mennonites: Part 2 – In the Name of Christ http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/03/08/the-anti-israel-movement-and-the-mennonites-part-2/

The Anti-Israel Movement and the Mennonites: Part 3 – Pawns at the Checkpoint http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/03/08/the-anti-israel-movement-and-the-mennonites-part-3-pawns-at-the-checkpoint/

Sabeel, Merton, Mennonite Convergence http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/03/13/sabeel-merton-mennonite-convergence/

“COME AND SEE”: MENNONITE LEADERS VISIT ISRAEL/PALESTINE http://www.mennoniteusa.org/2014/03/24/come-and-see-mennonite-leaders-visit-israelpalestine/

Mennonite Brethren Sponsored University Promoting the Labyrinth and Taize?

Is this Mennonite Brethren sponsored university condoning the labyrinth? Rather than warning about the labyrinth as an inter-religious and mystical device, this recent blog article appears to recommend its use…

Labyrinth
by STEVE VARVIS on JANUARY 8, 2014

I first became acquainted with labyrinths through my studies in Medieval literature and culture. One of the most famous labyrinths is embedded in the floor of Chartres Cathedral just south of Paris. Chartres is one of the most famous of medieval Cathedrals, and the labyrinth is well known because of this. The pattern of the labyrinth has been used in a famous study of Chaucer called “The Idea of the Canterbury Tales.”

Read more @ blogs.fresno.edu/stevevarvis/2014/01/08/labyrinth

Steve Varvis is Provost of Fresno Pacific University, an accredited Christian university established and sponsored by the Mennonite Brethren Church.

Coincidentally, also recently promoted at Fresno Pacific University was an ecumenical contemplative chanting prayer service called Taize:

TAIZÉ PRAYER.
Thursday, February 6, 7:00 p.m., Ashley Auditorium.
Taizé is a meditative prayer service that incorporates simple, repetitive song and chant, scripture readings, and periods of group silence in a setting of peace and soft light that fosters communion with God. Through Taizé, participants can worship in a community setting, while remaining open to the voice of God in their hearts.
Taizé Prayer is an ecumenical form of prayer meant to foster reconciliation and peace among all people. Christians of all traditions share in this ecumenical group. Taizé Prayer is meditative common prayer. Gathered in the presence of Christ, we sing uncomplicated repetitive songs, uncluttered by too many words, allowing the mystery of God to become tangible through the beauty of simplicity.

From Milt Friesen @ http://squawkbox.fresno.edu/node/602

Both the labyrinth and Taize are contemplative practices that being accepted by nearly every compromising Christian denomination today.

Related:

Mennonites and Prayer Labyrinths http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2011/10/27/mennonites-and-prayer-labyrinths/

The Labyrinth Journey: Walking the Path to Fulfillment?
By Carl Teichrib http://www.forcingchange.org/the_labyrinth_journey

Enter the labyrinth http://www.letusreason.org/Nam30.htm

Understanding Taize Worship http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/taize.htm